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Subject: Artillery in Afganistan    12/23/2001 5:56:18 AM
The news shows much footage of guns being fired in Afganistan and they seem to be Russian 122mm or 130mm howitzers (or guns?) being fired by 2 or 3 guys off into the distance. Is this for show or do the bad guys and good guys on either side use artillery the way they used to teach it at Ft. Sill: battery formations, effective fire direction control, forward observers, counter battery, and everything else involved in a modern war? It seems to be single guns firing direct fire across the desert but news footage can be deceiving. Do these guys know what they are doing or are cannon like large single shot rifles to these people? Just wondering.
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stingers    RE:Artillery in Afganistan   12/23/2001 8:42:41 PM
Probably just pointing the gun in the general direction and firing off a round. Or using it for direct fire (ie field gun), which the D-20 (122mm) can do ... the M-46 (130mm) can also be used as a field gun.
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ex-artillerist    RE:Artillery in Afganistan   2/20/2002 6:09:56 AM
Most of the guns used in Afghanistan and seen on TV and newspapers are D-30 122mm howitzers. I haven´t seen any 130mm but few 152mm guns (D-20 and M-1937). They can be used quite well for direct fire and they seem to use them that way quite often. They also probably have forward observes and commands are given via radios- there´s very few rangefinders if at all and all (one) I have seen was an old optical one in one picture where there were some tajiks on a hilltop observing taliban entrenchments (1999). Fire is probably directed by simple commands and distances are measured by eye. It´s not so hard and after 4-5 shots they have quite accurate fire if the target is fixed. Over twenty years warring and lack of ammunition means that they just can´t afford to bombard deserts and they probably are quite experienced in that kind of shooting even though very few have formal training. Probably their technics don´t differ much from those used in WWII.
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