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Czech Republic Learns from War in Ukraine and Equips its Army with FPV Drones.

The Czech Republic is preparing to enhance its ground units with small FPV (first-person view) drones for reconnaissance and strike missions. This initiative is part of the newly approved Concept for the Construction of the Army of the Czech Republic (KVAČR), although initial discussions on drone deployment and defense were minimal.
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The ongoing conflict in Ukraine has highlighted the importance of technology, particularly unmanned vehicles. (Picture source: Ukrainian MoD)

The ongoing conflict in Ukraine has highlighted the importance of technology, particularly unmanned vehicles, in modern warfare. Aware of this, the Czech army plans to extend the use of small drones beyond special forces and paratroopers to all soldiers in the field. Experimental training courses have already begun, with a massive deployment expected within three years. An essential component of this initiative is protecting current and future military equipment against drone threats.

This initiative is driven not only by the conflict in Ukraine but also by the Czech military's involvement in supplying Ukraine with thousands of FPV drones. These drones are assembled in the Czech Republic using primarily Asian components.

Milan Mikulecký, co-founder of the D Group association, explained, "The final assembly takes place in the Czech Republic. We verified that we can produce all the components, but it would not be economically viable, so we import some things from Asia."

General Karel Řehka, the head of the Czech army and honorary chairman of the D Group association, emphasized the benefits of assisting Ukraine, stating, "Thanks to Ukraine’s help and the supply of these drones, we are also gaining the necessary know-how for our army."

Initially, the Czech military intended to acquire large surveillance and attack drones but has since reevaluated this strategy. General Roman Hyťha, director of the army’s intelligence security section, highlighted the need for soldiers at basic tactical levels to have real-time situational awareness, similar to everyday drone users.

The Czech army will procure hundreds of small drones for widespread use to address this. Colonel Magda Dvořáková, the army spokeswoman, explained that extensive preparations, including training courses, are underway to integrate drones into the arsenal across all units.

Soldiers are currently participating in experimental training courses for small tactical attack FPV drones, with plans for early implementation. The army is also exploring loitering munitions, or suicide drones, within a three-year timeframe.

The Czech army is also negotiating with an Israeli supplier for standby ammunition systems, aiming to acquire ten sets and over two hundred missiles, including practice ammunition. Though the supplier's identity remains confidential, it is speculated to be UVision from Israel, which collaborates with Rheinmetall, a German arms manufacturer.

The Czech army's strategy includes not only deploying drones and suicide munitions but also enhancing defense against these threats. This involves modifying tactical and operational procedures, employing camouflage, deceptive targets, advanced detection, and other measures. According to Dvořáková, the army continuously analyzes protection solutions, drawing insights from exercises like the Drone Shield and incorporating these findings into future projects.

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