VIDEO: Tension mounts as French forces try to halt progress of suicide truck

Originally published at:

1 Like

Yeesh that is a lot of open ground to cover.


Considering the small amount of smoke the first missile created, that main explosion was huge!

Also, towards the end, you can hear “Be careful with your gun!” as I imagine everyone was waving theirs around. And we say “putain” a lot in France…


OH yes, some of those IED and suicide blasts are just massive. IIRC a lot of them use scavenged artillery shells, with the projectile packed full of high explosives. There are a ton of videos of their devastating effects in the Middle East as well as places like Serbia and Kosovo.


Frame by frame the video… a tiny missile comes down from directly above the van. You see a pretty big fireball (that missile) and then an enormous very high velocity explosion (what was inside the van). Air support seems to have bailed them out. Small arms just weren’t cutting it.


It was a Javelin missile. They fly over the target and then attack from above.


How the hell does it know when to turn?

Electronic wizardry. It’s a fire-and-forget missile: on launch it knows where the target roughly is, so in top-attack mode it flies an offset course, then turns and uses its onboard sensor to identify and home in on the target.


Holy cats! That’s awesome!


I think the targeting system is in the launcher. No idea beyond that.

The military has some scary, scary toys.


Yeah, it kind of is. But also:

The Milan missile that misses earlier in the video is an earlier generation Command to Line of Sight missile, which means that the operator has to keep the target centred in the launcher sight during the flight, so that the launcher can send corrections to the missile along a wire. It depends on the operator being able to keep the sight centred on a moving target at long range for several seconds (while possibly being under fire), and the missile itself doesn’t have any smart electronics, just a little better than a radio-controlled plane.

With Javelin, the operator just has to identify the target then send the missile on its way, leaving them free to change position or ready another missile.

…I may know more about this subject than is strictly healthy.


Ah, I wondered about that. The first one I thought might be a TOW, which is also has a wire control.

The Javelin is much more expensive, but the results speak for themselves.

1 Like

I wonder if that sort of target tracking has usefulness outside of the military - I’d imagine it has applications in spaceflight, at minimum, if not flight in general.

Well, space probes use a combination of command and on-board sensors, generally. A rocket tosses the probe in the general direction of the heavenly body, that’s pre-programmed. The probe is tracked by the deep space network, and mission control sends it course corrections periodically. If it has to land then it will use a radar or laser altimeter to track its own descent, and then do preprogrammed stuff at various heights.

Landing is generally harder than just hitting something, though. /cough/Schiaperelli/cough/.


Hollow Earth Crystals, they are integral.

Are the Hollow Earthers and Expanding Earthers friends or enemies?

I guess the first rocket fired was a calculated attempt to save money. War is hell.


After the trauma of initial viewing, I highly recommend replay while muting the sound and listening instead to the Grateful Dead song “Truckin’.”

Let the healing begin.


Possibly not so good for tracking firewyrms flown by airborne strike of the morningstar empire that are under a powerful geas, amiright, @Nelsie (making a presumption here based on your avatar)? Though i can’t remember if the RAF used javelin missiles.