From September 8 to September 14, the Belarusian Armed Forces are conducting a command-staff exercise. In its social networks, the Ministry of Defense of Belarus regularly publishes photo reports showing the cheerful completion of combat-training tasks by servicemen. We noticed that unusual military equipment appeared in the pictures.
For example, the pictures published by the Ministry of Defense show the following:
Self-propelled anti-aircraft weapon system ZSU-23-4 Shilka / Ministry of Defense of Belarus
– Self-propelled anti-aircraft weapon system ZSU-23-4 Shilka. According to open sources, it was mass-produced from 1964 to 1982. There is an article about Shilka on the website of theMinistry of Defense of Belarus in the section devoted to the armament of the Land Forces of the Armed Forces of Belarus. However, according to open sources, the troops use more modern Tunguska system. We note that the photos of the Ministry of Defense show Shilka system without a license plate.
122-mm BM-21 Grad multiple rocket launcher based on Ural-375D chassis / Ministry of Defense of Belarus
– 122-mm BM-21 Grad multiple rocket launcher based on Ural-375D chassis. Grad launchers are used by artillery units of the Belarusian Armed Forces. The captured vehicles had no license plates. Such vehicles used by the troops must have either the old Soviet black and white license plate or a modern license plate.
Bogatyr armored vehicle (Chinese DongFeng Mengshi EQ2050) / Ministry of Defense of Belarus
– Bogatyr armored vehicle (Chinese DongFeng Mengshi EQ2050) with installed 12,7 mm DShKM machine gun. We note that the website of the Ministry of Defense of Belarus in the section devoted to the armament of the Land Forces of the Belarusian Armed Forces does not mention DShKM machine gun. Previously, there was no information in open sources about the installation of DShKM machine gun on armored vehicles.
It turns out that the Ministry of Defense of Belarus, in the framework of the command-staff exercises, uses samples of weapons and military equipment (sometimes quite old) that have been removed from storage. It would be logical to assume that the purpose of these events is to test their performance in a combat training situation. The involvement in the exercises of equipment removed from storage fully complies with the declared purpose of the exercises – to overcome Lukashenka’s fear of a potential military invasion by Ukraine.
It should be noted that judging by the available photos, which show the number of military equipment involved in the exercises, there is no reason to talk about large-scale decommissioning of the equipment in storage.