Anti-aircraft missile systems: “Halberd” versus “Stealth”

Classic halberd tips.
Papal guard with a halberd. Halberd

) - a polearm bladed weapon with a combined tip consisting of a needle-shaped (round or faceted) spear point and a battle ax blade with a sharp butt. It was in service with the infantry of a number of European countries from the 13th to the 17th centuries, becoming most widespread in the 16th centuries as an effective weapon against well-protected cavalry. Later it was used as a ceremonial weapon, and is still in service with the Vatican Swiss Guard to this day.

A close resemblance to a halberd is the pollex.

The design and principles of operation of the halberd

The halberd was a combination of a spear point and an ax blade with a sharp butt on a long (2-2.5 meters) shaft with a total weight of 2.5-5.5 kilograms. The tip of the halberd could be equipped with a hook. Halberds differed mainly in the shape and size of the ax (wide and narrow; crescent and flat; convex and concave; ax or hammer) and the number of hooks. There were also halberds without a spear point. The classic type (formed by the 15th century) is a halberd with a narrow hatchet of various shapes, a needle-shaped point and a triangular butt slightly curved downwards. Boarding halberds were equipped with a large hook and a longer (about 3 meters) shaft. Halberds were used to pierce all types of armor with the tip, pull riders off their horses, pull ships together during boarding, and deliver chopping blows with a blade or the butt of an ax.

Demand creates supply

Firms from a number of countries working in the sector of production and modernization of air defense systems wished to take advantage of the favorable situation. And here the palm was given in advance to companies from Russia. However, quite unexpectedly, Russian developers had to face competition from military-industrial complex enterprises in Poland, Ukraine and Belarus.

Thus, Belarusian enterprises proposed several options for modernizing the Pechora air defense system. This is the S-125 2 project, proposed by the Tetrahedr enterprise, as well as the S-125 2BM “Halberd”, developed under the auspices of Alevkurp OJSC.

According to media reports, the development of the S-125-2BM "Halberd" air defense system under the leadership of Alevkurp OJSC has been carried out since 2011. Its co-executors were VolatAvto (an enterprise formed by MZKT) and the 2566th radio-electronic weapons repair plant.

For the first time publicly, a sample of the S-125-2BM "Halberd" air defense system was demonstrated in July 2014 as part of the MILEX-2014 defense exhibition held in Minsk; during the presentation it was stated that a few days before the exhibition, tests of this system were carried out.

According to the developers, the Halberda anti-aircraft missile system is a modernized version of the Pechora-2M air defense system, created almost a decade and a half ago by the Belarusian-Russian international financial and industrial group Defense Systems on the basis of the Soviet S-125M Pechora series air defense system. .

Pechora-2M air defense missile system. Photo

Taking into account the fact that the main developer of the “Halberd” and the leading executor of the Pechora-2M project was the Minsk enterprise “Alevkurp”, experts, not without reason, made the assumption that in the new project of this team the most successful design and technological solutions used during the creation of Pechora-2M. In this connection, it would not be amiss to once again note the most significant of them.

The S-125M modernization program to the Pechora-2M level primarily provided for the replacement of the main analog equipment of the original complex with the digital equipment used in the S-300PMU1 air defense system. As well as the introduction of new means of protection against active and passive radio interference; devices for auto-acquisition and auto-tracking of targets in the TOV teleoptical channel; a device that provides special methods for scanning space.

A very important element of the S-125M air defense system modification program was the transfer of all the main subsystems of the complex (control cabin, antenna post, launchers) to off-road vehicle chassis of the Minsk Wheel Tractor Plant.

The main tactical and technical characteristics of the Pechora-2M complex are as follows: hitting a target at a range of 2.5-32 km; hitting the target in height - 0.02-20 km; shooting time - less than 30 minutes; escort of up to 16 air objects.

Types of halberd ax

  • Convex
    - a standard type of halberd, borrowed from the ax itself. Was typical for the early Middle Ages.
  • Flat
    - a more advanced type of halberd, which replaced the usual one, was distinguished by a more powerful blow and better penetration of armor compared to a convex axe. Was typical for the middle Middle Ages.
  • The crescent
    is the final stage of the halberd, which has replaced the flat one. It was distinguished by an even more powerful blow and better penetration of armor compared to a flat axe. Was typical for the late Middle Ages.


halberd in Wiktionary
  1. Godenbak // Encyclopedic Dictionary of Brockhaus and Efron: in 86 volumes (82 volumes and 4 additional). - St. Petersburg, 1890-1907.
  2. Hall, James.
    Dictionary of Plots and Symbols in Art = James Hall, Kenneth Clark. Dictionary of Subjects and Symbols in Art / Transl. from English and introductory article by A. Maikapara. - M.: "Kron-press", 1996. - 656 p. — 15,000 copies. — ISBN 5-323-01078-6. P. 55
  3. Ill. 182. Sergeant of the Infantry Regiment from 1700 to 1720. The view depicts the Marienburg Fortress in Livonia, conquered by Russian troops in 1702 // Historical description of clothing and weapons of Russian troops, with drawings, compiled by the highest order: in 30 volumes, in 60 books. / Ed. A. V. Viskovatova.

An old but true weapon

The history of the S-125 air defense system dates back to 1955, when the Soviet Union began developing means of combating potential enemy aircraft at altitudes of up to 20 km and destruction ranges of up to 25 km. In 1961, the complex was put into service. At that time, its characteristics were impressive: the S-125 could hit an aerial target flying at speeds of up to 550 m/s with two missiles with a probability of 0.98.

The “baptism of fire” of the S-125 air defense system took place in 1970 on the Sinai Peninsula. Photo

In real combat conditions in Vietnam and the Middle East, this air defense system proved to be a very effective air defense weapon, especially for destroying low-flying targets. In Soviet times, it was quite widely exported and is still in service with the armies of more than 35 states (about 400 complexes), including former Soviet republics, countries of Eastern Europe and foreign countries.

The Pechora air defense system was used during the Arab-Israeli war in October 1973. Then Syrian and Egyptian troops fired 305 missiles and hit 54 aircraft. It was used to combat enemy air in a number of military conflicts over the last two decades (including in the Persian Gulf and the Balkans). During the fighting in Yugoslavia in 1999, two Pechora air defense missiles shot down an American F-117 Nighthawk aircraft built using stels technology.

Long service life and experience in combat use of the Pechora air defense system have shown that, despite its significant service life, the complex has a large modernization reserve. This, along with well-established tactical techniques and the presence of well-trained combat and technical personnel, made it possible to speak about the effectiveness of extending its service life in the context of the limited capabilities of the defense budgets of potential customers from among poor developing countries.

Many experts consider the defeat of Libya by a coalition of Western countries to be a direct impetus for revival in the segment of the world market offering programs for modernization of Soviet-made air defense systems and systems. Then, already in the first days of the operation, coalition aircraft almost completely suppressed the air defense of Muammar Gaddafi. First of all, because it no longer met the requirements of modern warfare.

This circumstance forced a number of countries that had been postponing the rearmament of their air defense forces to find funds for their modernization, putting value for money at the forefront.


  • Halberd // Encyclopedic Dictionary of Brockhaus and Efron: in 86 volumes (82 volumes and 4 additional). - St. Petersburg, 1890-1907.
Slashing Boarding Ax · Battle Ax · Beard Ax · Brodex · Valashka · Lochaberaxt · Battle Scythe · Celt · Palstab · Ax · Sagaris · Mace Ax · Chasing (axe) · Francis
Piercing-slashing Halberd · Berdysh · Voulge · Glaive · Kuza · Siege knife · Siege knife · Palm · Polex · Sovnya
Impact-crushing War hammer · Beam · Buzdygan · Mace · Klevets · Multi-bladed mace · Morgenstern · Pernach · Chasing · Shestoper
Throwing Angon · Dart · Jid · Sulitsa · Pilum · Lancea · Soliferrum · Plumbata · Falarica
Other Gaff · Berdysh gun · Combat grip · Guizarma · Lucerne hammer · Mancatcher · Tournament spear · Swedish feather
Note: The template does not include hunting weapons or polearms from other regions of the world
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Excerpt characterizing the Halberd

– Mot d'ordre? [Feedback?] – Dolokhov held his horse and rode at a walk. – Dites donc, le colonel Gerard est ici? [Tell me, is Colonel Gerard here?] - he said. – Mot d'ordre! - Without answering, the sentry said, blocking the road. “Quand un officier fait sa ronde, les sentinelles ne demandent pas le mot d'ordre...” Dolokhov shouted, suddenly flushing, running his horse into the sentry. – Je vous demande si le colonel est ici? [When the officer goes around the chain, the sentries do not ask for feedback... I ask, is the colonel here?] And, without waiting for an answer from the guard who stood aside, Dolokhov walked up the hill at a walk. Noticing the black shadow of a man crossing the road, Dolokhov stopped this man and asked where the commander and officers were? This man, a soldier with a sack on his shoulder, stopped, came close to Dolokhov’s horse, touching it with his hand, and simply and friendlyly said that the commander and officers were higher on the mountain, on the right side, in the farm yard (that’s what he called the master’s estate). Having driven along the road, on both sides of which French conversation could be heard from the fires, Dolokhov turned into the courtyard of the manor’s house. Having passed through the gate, he dismounted from his horse and approached a large blazing fire, around which several people were sitting, talking loudly. Something was boiling in a pot on the edge, and a soldier in a cap and blue overcoat, kneeling, brightly illuminated by the fire, stirred it with a ramrod. “Oh, c'est un dur a cuire, [You can’t deal with this devil.]” said one of the officers sitting in the shadows on the opposite side of the fire. “Il les fera marcher les lapins... [He will get through them...],” said another with a laugh. Both fell silent, peering into the darkness at the sound of the steps of Dolokhov and Petya, approaching the fire with their horses. - Bonjour, messieurs! [Hello, gentlemen!] - Dolokhov said loudly and clearly. The officers stirred in the shadow of the fire, and one, a tall officer with a long neck, walked around the fire and approached Dolokhov. – C'est vous, Clement? - he said. – D'ou, diable... [Is that you, Clément? Where the hell...] ​​- but he didn’t finish, having learned his mistake, and, frowning slightly, as if he were a stranger, he greeted Dolokhov, asking him how he could serve. Dolokhov said that he and a friend were catching up with their regiment, and asked, turning to everyone in general, if the officers knew anything about the sixth regiment. Nobody knew anything; and it seemed to Petya that the officers began to examine him and Dolokhov with hostility and suspicion. Everyone was silent for a few seconds. “Si vous comptez sur la soupe du soir, vous venez trop tard, [If you are counting on dinner, then you are late.],” said a voice from behind the fire with a restrained laugh. Dolokhov replied that they were full and that they needed to move on at night. He gave the horses to the soldier who was stirring the pot, and squatted down by the fire next to the long-necked officer. This officer, without taking his eyes off, looked at Dolokhov and asked him again: what regiment was he in? Dolokhov did not answer, as if he had not heard the question, and, lighting a short French pipe, which he took out of his pocket, asked the officers how safe the road was from the Cossacks ahead of them.

It's been a couple of days since Quel'Danil's lodge was cleared of corruption. The Silver Covenant detachment was slowly settling into its new place, and new quel'dorei were arriving from all corners of Azeroth. For Bel it was a pleasant surprise to find a spearman among the new faces. Still, among his people, polearms were not as popular as bows or magic. It's always nice to meet a kindred spirit, even if that kinship lies only in the choice of your favorite weapon.

Getting to know each other a little and chatting about life, the two elves decided to find out what was better - a good old spear or a halberd. Well, how to find out such a delicate issue, if not through a good fight? Moving to a clearing nearby, the quel'dorei stood opposite each other and prepared for battle.

Bel struck first. The halberd broke through the enemy’s defenses and stopped right in front of the enemy’s face. However, revenge was not long in coming and Rem launched a swift counter-attack, thereby equalizing the score. Several more pokes and thrusts followed each other. The opponents fought at the same level, not allowing anyone to get much ahead in the score. Soon Sergeant Violessa Sun Song came out to see the spectacle, to which Bel was distracted and deservedly received several heavy pokes. Everything was starting to go against him.

However, unlike his opponent, Baloren did not take this sparring too seriously, rather as a warm-up for stagnant bones. For a couple of decades now, the elf had not had the opportunity to fight a worthy opponent, and Remesif was just that. His endurance and refined technique could be the envy of many veterans of the First and Second Wars, but the boy still lacked real combat experience. He fought like a textbook, which made his actions quite easy to predict, but even so Bel had big problems. Only great luck and a little cunning allowed the pointy ear to emerge victorious from this battle. Having blinded Rem, he delivered the finishing blow and the sparring was over.

To the surprise of the joyful Baloran, Remesif reacted very negatively to this outcome of events. After exchanging a few banal pleasantries, the two suddenly entered into a stupid argument about personal values, which is not worth repeating out loud and from which no one ever emerged victorious. A few hours later, the elves talked again and seemed to have found some kind of compromise.

(Some of the screenshots were not taken, so I am attaching the logs.)

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