ARMENIA ESCALATES THE CONFLICT BY STRATEGIC WEAPON SALVOS BEHIND THE FRONTLINES

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ARMENIA ESCALATES THE CONFLICT

BY STRATEGIC WEAPON SALVOS BEHIND THE FRONTLINES

 

Dr. Can Kasapoglu, Director of Security and Defense Research Program, EDAM

Sine Ozkarasahin, Researcher, EDAM

 

 

Political-Military Assessment:

  • On October 4, Armenian missile forces hit Azerbaijan’s highly-populated city of Ganja, claiming the lives of civilians.
  • Armenian forces, overwhelmed by Azerbaijan’s intensive drone warfare campaign, opt for exercising an effective intra-war deterrence strategy to control the escalatory patterns within the ongoing war which, so far, has been dominated the Azerbaijani military. The underlying objective is to spark a massive Azerbaijani retaliation to the Armenian principle which would inevitably drag Russia into the conflict due to the security agreements between Moscow and Yerevan.
  • Armenia has several multiple-launch rocket systems and tactical ballistic missiles in its arsenal to execute the attack. Although the Russian-manufactured SS-26 Iskander is one of them, we believe that, at this point, Armenia would not escalate the conflict to the utmost extreme by using the highest-end Russian weaponry available.
  • Azerbaijan’s response, as to the target set and locations, will determine the trajectory of the conflict.
  • Depending on different launch positions, below, we prepared 4 major scenarios as to the weapon system of choice, possible launch areas, and estimated flight path for the homing missile or rocket.

 Scenario 1:

CONOPS (Concepts of Operations): Tactical ballistic missile launch from the Armenian 4th Army Corps positions in Yeghengnadzor

Estimated flight path: More than 130km

Possible Weapon Systems of Choice:

  • SS-26 Iskander (280km max. range for the export variant at the Armenian inventory – low probability & high impact scenario, as the SS-26 remains the most advanced strategic weapon in the Armenian arsenal –)
  • Scud-B (300km range)
  • Tochka (advanced variants up to some 180km range)

Scenario 2:

CONOPS: Tactical ballistic missile salvo from the launch positions around Erebuni airbase

Estimated flight path: Some 160 – 170km

Possible Weapon Systems of Choice:

  • SS-26 Iskander (280km max. range for the export variant at the Armenian inventory – low probability & high impact scenario, as the SS-26 remains the most advanced strategic weapon in the Armenian arsenal –)
  • Scud-B (300km range)
  • Tochka (advanced variants up to some 180km range)

Scenario 3:

CONOPS: Multiple-launch rocket systems (MLRS) or tactical ballistic missile launch from the Armenian frontier into Azerbaijan.

Estimated flight path: Some 60km

Possible Weapon Systems of Choice:

  • MLRS:

BM-30 Smerch (300mm heavy MLRS, 90km max. range with the modernization in the 2000s), WM-80 (Chinese-manufactured 273mm MLRS, up to 120km range)

Tactical Ballistic Missiles:

  • Scud-B (300km range)
  • Tochka (advanced variants up to some 180km range)
  • SS-26 Iskander (280km max. range for the export variant at the Armenian inventory – low probability & high impact scenario, as the SS-26 remains the most advanced strategic weapon in the Armenian arsenal –)

Scenario 4:

CONOPS:  Tactical ballistic missile or MLRS launch from the Armenian-occupied Azerbaijani territories, Xankendi.

Estimated Flight Path: Some 100km

Possible Weapon Systems of Choice:

  • MLRS:

WM-80 (Chinese-manufactured 273mm MLRS, up to 120km range)

Tactical Ballistic Missiles:

  • Scud-B (300km range)
  • Tochka (advanced variants up to some 180km range)
  • SS-26 Iskander (280km max. range for the export variant at the Armenian inventory – low probability & high impact scenario, as the SS-26 remains the most advanced strategic weapon in the Armenian arsenal –)