Poland has signed an intergovernmental agreement (LOA) with the United States for the purchase of the AGM-114R2 Hellfire missile, produced by Lockheed Martin. The U.S. State Department has made a determination approving a possible Foreign Military Sale to the Government of Poland of AGM-114R2 Hellfire missiles and related equipment for an estimated cost of $150 million. The Republic of Poland has requested to buy eight hundred (800) AGM-114R2 Hellfire missiles; and four (4) M36 Hellfire Captive Air Training Missiles (CATM). Also included is Tactical Aviation Ground Munition Program Office technical assistance; Security Assistance Management Directorate technical assistance and other related elements of logistics and program support.
Poland plans to integrate the AGM-114R2 Hellfire missiles with the Leonardo AW149 multi-role helicopters. The contract, signed between the Polish Ministry of Defense and the firm PZL-?widnik (a Polish subsidiary of Italian defence company Leonardo) for the supply of 32 AW149 multirole helicopters is valued at €1.76 billion. The integration of missiles with the helicopters will be handled by the PZL Swidnik. The helicopters’ configuration, fully meeting the requirements of the Polish Armed Forces, will also include, among others, observation systems, small arms, guided/unguided rockets and missiles and self-defence systems. The armament, depending on the helicopter variant and configuration on the helicopter’s external hard points.
Poland’s Armament Agency says it has reached an agreement with the United States to receive eight Boeing AH-64E Apache attack helicopters sooner than previously expected. Poland in 2022 announced its intent to purchase 96 of the powerful rotorcraft from Boeing under its Kruk programme. Warsaw selected the AH-64 over Bell’s AH-1Z Viper attack helicopter. The nearly-100 AH-64s are meant to replace Poland’s current fleet of 30 Soviet-era Mil Mi-24/35 helicopters. However, the eight aircraft coming from the U.S. Army are apparently meant to more rapidly field the capability to NATO member Poland, which is positioned on the military alliance’s far eastern flank – sharing a border with both Ukraine and Russian ally Belarus.
The AGM-114 Hellfire is an American air-to-ground missile (AGM) first developed for anti-armor use, later developed for precision drone strikes against other target types, especially high-value targets. It was originally developed under the name Heliborne laser, fire-and-forget missile, which led to the colloquial name “Hellfire” ultimately becoming the missile’s formal name. It has a multi-mission, multi-target precision-strike ability and can be launched from multiple air, sea, and ground platforms, including the MQ-1 Predator and MQ-9 Reaper. The AGM-114R “Romeo” Hellfire II entered service in late 2012. It uses a semi-active laser homing guidance system and a K-charge multipurpose warhead to engage targets that formerly needed multiple Hellfire variants.