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In the mythology of Ukraine’s resistance against Russia’s invading forces, light-footed infantry armed only with shoulder-fired anti-tank missiles from the U.S. and Europe have played the starring role. Yet that’s only part of a story where old-fashioned artillery is helping create decisive wins.

Artillery’s less articulated but central function explains why the U.S. and other nations that collectively make up Ukraine’s arsenal are now putting so much emphasis on providing 155 mm howitzers — in the case of the U.S., at least 90 of them, worth as much as $750,000 a piece, plus 184,000 rounds of ammunition.

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