The ongoing Russia-Ukraine war continues to witness remarkable ingenuity and innovation on the battlefield, as exemplified by a recently surfaced video featuring a contraption made of six AK-74 assault rifles.
On July 7, a video emerged on Twitter depicting a weapon positioned at the edge of a field, equipped with a crosshair iron sight, while two targets soar overhead; the operator then proceeds to engage the target.
The emergence of this recent video follows the release of footage two days ago, where the same weapon was showcased without firing.
Throughout the nearly 17-month conflict between Ukraine and Russia, the battlefield has seen abundant displays of creativity, and technological innovation, exemplifying the continuous efforts to overcome challenges and develop strategic advancements in warfare.
It is highly possible that the contraption, consisting of six AK-74 assault rifles, has been repurposed by Ukrainian forces for counter-drone operations.
In the footage, the AK-74 rifles are visibly secured to an internal frame with a central charging handle and trigger system that interconnects all six individual triggers.
The synchronized discharge of fire from six AK-74 assault rifles creates a visually striking spectacle; however, it does not seem to successfully intercept the target drones, suggesting limitations in its effectiveness against airborne targets.
Despite its limitations, the video, along with other available footage, demonstrates that the improvised system does possess operational functionality. Meanwhile, the video does not provide information regarding the type of drone targeted in the footage.
The AK-74, introduced in the 1970s as a successor to the AK-47, now serves as one of the primary service rifles the Ukrainian military utilizes.
The AK-74 is known for its ease of control and suitability for the cold environments prevalent in Ukraine. Its long-stroke gas-piston system is particularly effective in such conditions, which are prevalent across a significant portion of Ukraine.
In the video, alongside the improvised AK-74 weapon, on the left side of the frame, another individual can be observed firing a Degtyaryov DP-27 machine gun—an older design from before World War II that is still in use in Ukraine.
An Anti-Drone Drone Weapon
The development of the improvised weapon serves as a testament to the influence of Russian kamikaze drones, which have significantly impacted the war in Ukraine.
Initially, Russia deployed Iranian Shahed-136 kamikaze drones against Ukraine, which overwhelmed the Ukrainian defense and later exhausted their air defense missiles. However, they swiftly adapted to the situation by forming specialized anti-drone groups that employed military lasers to effectively combat the threat posed by suicide drones.
The Iranian-made Kamikaze drones, known as “Geranium 2” in Russian military service, have proven formidable weapons utilizing GPS coordinates to achieve precise and accurate targeting.
Since September of the last year, these drones have inflicted significant damage in Ukraine, prompting repeated appeals from Ukraine for advanced air defense systems to counter the threat.
The new multi-rifle contraption also appears to be designed with the intention of utilizing readily available firearms and ammunition to enhance the volume of fire, potentially increasing the likelihood of hitting these hostile aerial targets.
But, the actual effectiveness of this approach remains uncertain.
Despite the questionable operational impact that the improvised multi-AK-74 weapon may have against Russian drones, it undeniably stands out as a fascinating sight from a mechanical standpoint, highlighting the ingenuity and resourcefulness of those involved.
The inclusion of the improvised multi-AK-74 weapon in Ukraine’s arsenal adds to a lengthy list of their continuous efforts to adapt and innovate on the battlefield.
Prior to this development, Ukrainian forces have been observed utilizing decoys, including dummy soldiers, artillery pieces, tanks, and aircraft, as a strategic measure to deceive and confuse Russian forces.
Overall, the conflict between Russia and Ukraine has earned the reputation of being a “technology war,” where the application and experimentation of state-of-the-art technologies have taken center stage.
However, it is important to recognize that the global spotlight has also been drawn to the unconventional and non-technology-related innovations that have emerged from this war.
Thus, these non-traditional innovations have captivated attention by demonstrating the significance of resourcefulness, strategic improvisation, and unconventional thinking alongside the deployment of cutting-edge technologies.