BMP FV510 Warrior on the teachings of the British army. Photo by the British Ministry of Defense
Since last year, the UK has been actively helping the Kyiv regime with the supply of various armored vehicles. Armored cars, armored personnel carriers and even basic Tanks. In addition, more than a year ago, the first rumors appeared about the possibility of sending FV510 Warrior infantry fighting vehicles to Ukraine. The final decision on such deliveries has not yet been made, but unconfirmed reports have already appeared about the start of shipment of this equipment.
According to unconfirmed reports
The British authorities began discussing the possibility of transferring their combat vehicles to the Kyiv regime back in February-March 2022. Over the next few months, they made a fundamental decision and began delivering various samples. At the same time, the list of completed and planned deliveries did not include the FV510 Warrior infantry fighting vehicles and their modifications.
However, in mid-June, reports appeared in the blogosphere about sending the first batch of Warriors to Ukraine. As proof of this information, a short video was cited showing the transport of a number of BMPs by rail. The telegram channels that published it reported that the video had already been filmed on Ukrainian territory. However, the quality of the video and the captured objects did not allow us to unambiguously determine the location of the shooting. Voice-over speech in Russian with obscene inclusions and a characteristic accent also did not add clarity.
Transportation of "Warriors" by rail. Frame from video June 2022 from Telegram / "Militarist"
It soon became clear that reports of the delivery of the FV510 to the Kyiv regime should be considered rumors or a deliberate "stuffing". British or Ukrainian officials did not confirm the transfer of such equipment, and in addition, it did not appear in the war zone or in the rear in the future.
In early January 2023, The Daily Telegraph published an article about the current processes of assistance to Ukraine written by the former Chief of Staff of the British Armed Forces, Richard Dannat. Considering the possibilities of his country in the context of sending equipment to the Kyiv regime, he remembered the Warrior BMP.
R. Dannat pointed out that the Warriors are already considered obsolete, and the army has drawn up a plan for the gradual decommissioning of such equipment and replacing it with modern models. He believes that decommissioned equipment should not be sent for dismantling - it should be transferred to Ukraine.
From this proposal it follows that by the beginning of 2023 the British side did not transfer its old BMPs to the Kyiv regime. Moreover, at that time they might not have even discussed the possibility of providing such assistance. It should also be noted that the Daily Telegraph cited only the personal opinion of the former military leader - with the corresponding perspectives.
Transportation of British infantry fighting vehicles, August 2023. Frame from the video from Telegram / "Militarist"
Over the next few months, the Warrior cars were practically not remembered. However, the other day again there was information about the possible start of deliveries of such equipment. Once again, a video from the railway, filmed in an unknown location, has spread through thematic Telegram channels. This time, two echelons with British infantry fighting vehicles got into the frame at once. According to the caption to the video, the transportation of equipment to Ukraine is carried out under the cover of the Iron Storm exercises.
It should be recalled that the name "Iron Storm" hides the annual exercises of the British ground forces, conducted both domestically and at foreign training grounds. This year, the maneuvers began in April and continued until mid-July. After that, the units and subunits involved in the exercises began to return to their places of permanent deployment.
The transportation of personnel and armored vehicles to their bases continues almost to this day. It is possible that this process was captured on a recent video. Evidence of the transportation of the Warrior BMP towards Ukraine and the receipt of equipment at the disposal of the Kyiv regime is not yet available - just like last time.
Decision not made
Thus, over the past year or more, the British FV510 infantry fighting vehicles have been mentioned several times in the context of assistance to Ukraine, and there have even been reports of the start of deliveries of such equipment. However, none of these reports has yet received worthy confirmation - from officials, from new owners or from the Russian military, who will eventually have to deal with such armored objects.
British IFVs return to base, August 2023. Still from Youtube video / George JG
Apparently, despite the rumors and reports, the British leadership has not yet made a decision to supply the Warriors to the friendly Kyiv regime. Moreover, in open statements and discussions at the official level, such infantry fighting vehicles are not mentioned at all. Probably, they are not going to be shipped - unlike the equipment of other classes, up to MBT.
Recall that the Warrior BMP and the family of armored vehicles based on it entered service with the UK in the late eighties. In 1987-95. the British army received almost 790 vehicles of all types and modifications, incl. almost 500 infantry fighting vehicles. In the future, all of them were actively exploited, but in the XNUMXs and XNUMXs, a gradual reduction in the active fleet began. The equipment was decommissioned or sent for storage due to damage, resource development, or in order to reduce the cost of the army.
According to The Military Balance 2023, the British Army currently has about 390 Warrior infantry fighting vehicles and a number of unified vehicles. As recent events around the Challenger 2 tanks have shown, not all of them can be ready for operation and combat use. Moreover, the number of infantry fighting vehicles will be gradually reduced. Back in 2021, the command announced that by the middle of the decade, such infantry fighting vehicles and other models of the family would be replaced by vehicles on the Ajax and Boxer platforms.
"Warriors" on exercises. Photo by the British Ministry of Defense
British industry and foreign contractors have already begun production of the required equipment. The process of re-equipping motorized infantry and other structures also started. At the same time, they face serious difficulties of a different nature. In particular, Agexes have still not been able to get rid of a number of technical shortcomings, while the cost of the program continues to grow.
In such a situation, the ground forces will have to seriously reconsider their plans and change their attitude towards available armored vehicles. Due to the insufficient pace of rearmament, they will have to extend the life of the Warrior family. This will allow maintaining the required size of the armored vehicle fleet until the start of mass deliveries of new vehicles and full re-equipment.
Accordingly, a further reduction in the Warriors fleet - regardless of its reasons and objectives - is practically impossible and threatens the combat capability of the ground forces. Their condition in its current form causes concern to the command, and an additional reduction in the fleet of infantry fighting vehicles and other unified equipment will become a serious threat to national security.
Armored vehicles in Afghanistan. Photo by the British Ministry of Defense
In addition, the British command should already understand that the allocation of new aid to Ukraine is in fact useless. In 2022-23 the Kyiv regime received a significant number of armored vehicles, armored personnel carriers, self-propelled air defense systems, etc. - and most of this equipment has already been destroyed. Not so long ago, Challenger 2 MBTs were sent to Ukraine, and they are still intact only because they remain in the rear.
In a difficult situation
Thus, all reports of the delivery of British Warrior infantry fighting vehicles have not yet been confirmed. Shipments of such equipment have not yet begun and, it seems, are not even planned. However, they cannot be completely ruled out yet. The British leadership wants to complete the Ukrainian adventure with favorable military-political results. Perhaps, for the sake of this, it is ready to continue to sacrifice the fleet of equipment and the combat capability of its army.
However, the current situation as a whole gives us reasons for optimism. It seems that the UK has chosen all the "free" stocks of armored vehicles for delivery to Ukraine, and further combat vehicles will be transferred only in limited quantities. In addition, any new shipment of armored vehicles worsens the position and prospects of London - and in the case of the Warrior BMP, this is especially pronounced.
With all this, the appearance of the "Warriors" in the combat zone will not be a serious challenge for the Russian army. Our personnel and domestic weapons have already shown the ability to effectively deal with various foreign armored vehicles. At the same time, some of the destroyed vehicles were a more difficult target than the British BMP. It follows that the UK should not send its Warriors abroad, and its leadership seems to be doing just that.