Do you know bouncy castles for children? In the scenario of the war in Ukraine, Kiev is also fielding very similar “weapons”, dozens and dozens of tanks and gigantic HIMARS missile launchers ready (apparently) to vomit bullets and ammunition against the Russian army. Looking at them from a distance, one would think of a group of armored vehicles and artillery pieces ready to go into action, but this is where the deception lies: in fact, it is enough to get close to discover that in truth they are only inflatable decoys, positioned on the field of battle to confuse the enemy. The trick is simple and effective: place hordes of fake Leopards or HIMARS in the front line and wait for the Russians to hit them, wasting tens or hundreds of ammunition. It is not excluded that the Russian armed forces also use similar systems to deceive the Ukrainian ones.
While waiting for actual armored vehicles to arrive in Kiev, the army leaders have decided to resort to an old trick, that of confusing the enemy with inflatable weapons: decoys are already widely used in military polygons for training, but the their use was now massively envisaged even on the battlefields. As Reuters explained, the decoys are made by Inflatech Decoys , a Czech manufacturer specializing in fake military equipment which has seen its earnings soar in the last year. The company has a catalog of over 30 different, full-sized, inflatable lures that it sells to customers around the world. Now the 31st “model” has been added: that of the HIMARS.
The decoys, which include missile launch batteries and even war jets , are made using light plastic materials and, in addition to visually misleading the opponent, have a thermal imprint. It therefore means who enemies can see them on radars. Shipping them is simple: each model comes packed in bags that can be carried by two to four soldiers. They can be inflated in about ten minutes and with a few hours of work a perfectly believable scenario can be set up, for example by placing dozens of tanks in line.