Rare photos showing Syrian army positions with old Soviet M-240 mortars deployed have been uploaded to the internet, according to a report by Rossiyskaya Gazeta. The photos clearly show the mortars and their ordnance.
And that's not even the biggest thing the M-240 can fire: there is an even bigger shell that weighs 230 kg.
Military experts have pointed out the high precision of these supermortars — their accuracy is only diminished by the accuracy of their spotters' coordinates.
The high weight of their ordnance reduces these mortars' rate of fire, though, to a sluggish one shot per minute. However, judging by the photo, the Syrian army has managed to mechanize the reloading process by using a truck with a crane.
Images of this weapon being used in the Syrian Civil War are rare, with only a few uploaded to the web.
The M-240s were developed in the Soviet Union back in the 1950s. During the 1971-2000 reign of Hafez Al-Assad, the father of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad, the Soviet Union provided Syria and Iraq with various weaponry, including the M-240s. These two countries are the only ones who still have the ancient M-240s in service. In the Russian armed forces, they were replaced long ago by a tracked, self-propelled artillery, the 2S4 "Tyulpan."