The M22 subsystem was the first standard helicopter missile armament of the US military. The M22 consisted of six AGM-22 wire-guided counter-tank missiles, which was a licensed version of the French SS.11. SS.11 is the designation of the Nord Aviation MCLOS wire-guided anti-tank missile. The missile entered service with the French Army in 1956.

SS.11 Anti Tank Missile being jointly tested by ARGMA and Army Aviation Command at the Redstone testing grounds, 1959

Introduced in the early 1960s, the M22’s baptism of fire dates back to October 9, 1966, when 2/20 ARA (Aerial Rocket Artillery) UH-1B helicopters fired AGM-22B missiles at several bunkers and barricades constructed by Communist forces in Binh Dinh Province, South Vietnam.

The mission was carried out as part of Operation IRVING, conducted between 2nd and 24th October 1966 by the 1st Cavalry Division, supported by elements of the 22nd Division of the ARVN and by the Capital Division of the South Korean Army. It should be noted that, in addition to the destruction of the enemy fortifications, that mission also led to the capture of 55 Vietcong soldiers.

With the introduction of the TOW and Cobra antitank in the 1970s, the M22 disappeared fairly quickly from the US Army arsenal.

Bell Helicopter Company Ad from 1962 with AGM-22: The Hottest Thing In Helicopters Today!

What? Bell’s turbine-powered Iroquis. This U.S. Army helicopter is a leader, now being produced in quantity by Bell’s turbine talent team.

Why? Bell’s Iroquis supports field troops with firepower from the air… supplies them in inaccessible areas… searches out and evacuates combat casualties. it is mission balanced… big enough for the tough jobs… small enough to be transported by air. The Bell Iroquis is an of-the-shelf helicopter available to other U.S. services with the major costs of research and development behind it.

Where? On the production line… lowest cost per airframe pound. On the flight line… highest availability and performance. In the military… greatest utility in its class. Soon these same values will make the turbine-powered 204 the hottest thing in business and industry, where today, three out of four commercial helicopters are Bells. The 10-place 204 will move more people or pounds per operating dollar than any helicopter in its class.

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