One of the US Army’s most popular weapons, the HIMARS multiple launch rocket system (MLRS) Drills , missed its target during a live-fire exercise in the South China Sea on April 26.
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This year’s Balikatan military drills included a live-fire exercise,
Which Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. watched from a tower
While sitting next to US Ambassador to the Philippines MaryKay Carlson.
The exercise’s target—a decommissioned warship—was missed by the much-heralded
High Mobility Artillery Rocket System, or HIMARS.
The two HIMARS launchers attempted to sink the BRP Pangasinan,
a former Philippine navy corvette, six times, but were unsuccessful each time.
Eventually, the ship was sunk by a barrage of weapons from US and Philippine artillery and aircraft.
The Balikatan exercise, the biggest ever in terms of troop numbers with more than 17,000 US
And Filipino forces, is reported to show more proof of the Philippines’
clear inclination towards its longtime friend, the United States, under the leadership of Marcos.
Although the Philippines is one of several nations involved in a territorial dispute
With China in the South China Sea and China continues to assert control over maritime territory
Claimed by the Philippines, Manila appeared to be moving closer to Beijing under former Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte.
A combined intelligence fusion effects centre (CIFEC) at Camp Aquino in Tarlac received the information
About the target vessel’s location from the Hermes 900 drone and other redundant sensors,
Which then gave instructions to the fire units.
The warship was invisible beyond the horizon
While a narrator over a public address system detailed the incident down range.
HIMARS’ Failure To Hit Its Target
To simulate a real-world scenario in which troops have to sink an adversary ship,
The first HIMARS rocket was targeted at the center mast of the vessel to take out its communication system,
While the rest of the five rounds were intended to sink it.
However, the first shot missed the target because the vessel was drifting and “was not in the correct location,”
As announced by US military personnel.
The first shot missed the target vessel by approximately six to nine meters,
While the five other shots hit different points.
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