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US Stryker armored fighting vehicles help Ukraine recapture lost territory in Kharkiv region, report says

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Ukrainian forces recently recaptured territory near the city of Vovchansk in the region, according to the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) think tank. It cited geolocated footage published on May 22.

Vovchansk has been the scene of fierce fighting in recent days as Russia continues its attempts to drive Ukrainian forces back from the border with Belgorod Oblast.

Sources told the Kyiv Post that the Ukrainian fightback in the area was being led by the elite 82nd Air Assault Brigade, with support from special forces — and the US-supplied Strykers.

Leaked military documents from last year showed that the powerhouse 82nd unit is one of Ukraine’s best equipped, with around 150 armored infantry carriers, including 90 Strykers and 14 British Challenger tanks, per Politico.

The brigade was kept in reserve until August last year when it was finally sent into battle around Robotyne in the region of Zaporizhzhia in southern Ukraine to support the counteroffensive, which ended in disappointment for Kyiv.

A video posted online by the 82nd Air Assault Brigade appears to show the Strykers in action in Vovchansk.


A series of Stryker armored vehicles.

Stryker vehicles.

Picture Alliance/Getty Images



According to the manufacturer, General Dynamics, Strykers come in 10 variants, including an infantry carrier, a reconnaissance, and a mobile gun system.

They can hit a top speed of 62.5 mph and have a cruising range of 330 miles.

The vehicles first saw action with the US Army during Operation Iraqi Freedom, with the 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team (BCT) arriving in Iraq in 2003.

The eight-wheeled infantry transporter proved highly effective in urban warfare and quickly earned praise for its operational mobility and command-and-control network.

In 2017, Theodore Kleisner, then a lieutenant colonel who had served as a company commander in the 3rd BCT in Iraq, praised the Stryker: “We used Strykers to maneuver around and to stop bullets. We stayed in them until we thought we were at a point where we needed to establish dominance of terrain.”

Stryker BCT, Maj. Walter Gray II, in a 2017 study, noted that Strykers built a positive reputation among soldiers for their “maneuverability, speed, and quiet operation,” saying that they were “favorable for raids, patrolling, and cordon-and-search operations in the urban streets of Mosul.”

“The Iraqis began calling the Strykers ‘Ghost Riders’ because they were so quiet,” he added.

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