U.S. delivers Raytheon Javelin antitank missiles to Estonia


On February 15, the United States delivered 128 anti-tank Raytheon FGM-148 Javelin missiles to the Estonian Ministry of Defense and Estonian Defense Forces as part of a larger contract signed by the Estonian Center for Defense Investment and the U.S. Department of Defense.


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U.S. soldiers fire FGM-148 Javelin during an exercise with the Indonesian army on Aug. 22, 2019, during Garuda Shield (Picture source: U.S. Army)


The shipment will continue to build upon Estonia’s defensive capabilities and further strengthens our nations’ strategic integration while ensuring interoperability among NATO Allies and partners. The Javelin anti-tank missile systems are part of an on-going cooperative effort involving joint financing from the U.S. Department of State and Estonian national funds.

The Estonian Defense Forces and United States European Command continue to work together to achieve joint strategic objectives and guarantee stability in the region. The United States has provided Estonia with over $100 million in joint defense cooperation over the past few years and takes part in over 150 military-to-military engagements between our service members each year.

The FGM-148 Javelin is a man-portable fire-and-forget anti-tank missile fielded to replace the aging M47 Dragon anti-tank missile in US service. It uses automatic infrared guidance that allows the user to seek cover immediately after launch, as opposed to wire-guided systems, like the Dragon, which requires the user to actively guide the weapon throughout the engagement. The system consists of three main components - the Command Launch Unit, the Launch Tube Assembly and the missile itself. The Javelin's HEAT warhead is capable of defeating modern tanks by attacking them from above, where their armor is the thinnest and is also useful against fortifications in a direct attack flight. So far, more than 5,000 Javelins have already been fired in combat situations.


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