"If the Russian leaders consider that conflict is inevitable, they will have a strong incentive to seize the initiative and go on the attack," write two U.S. defense analyst.
From the point of view of the Kremlin, the world is a scary place.
The defence Alliance NATO under US leadership has spread to Eastern Europe and the Baltic States, and has established partnerships with many countries surrounding Russia in the South — Georgia, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, to name just three.
NATO deployed four battle groups in the Baltic States, at about two hours drive from the second largest city of Russia, St. Petersburg.
The armed forces of the United States great superiority in regard to how the air force and electronics, as well as missiles and other weapons systems long-range.
At the same time, Americans invest billions in different types of missile defence, which casts doubt on the main Russian weapon of deterrence — a nuclear missile.
© AP Photo, File. The rocket UR-100N (SS-19 the classification of the US and NATO) the destruction of, a military unit near the village of Vakulenchuk
In addition, the Russian leadership believes that Western countries support the regime change in the countries around Russia and opposition groups within the country. In 2014, Putin's man on Ukraine, President Yanukovych was forced to flee the country from large-scale protests, and the Kremlin is the most obvious and frightening example.
In light of this, the Kremlin believes the annexation of Crimea and support for rebels in Eastern Ukraine, a strategically defensive actions, according to, for example, an expert on Russia Richard Sokolsky (Richard Sokolsky) of the Carnegie endowment for international peace.
The West — of course, the opposite opinion.
Countries included in NATO after the fall of the Berlin wall, did it willingly, and Russia is not concerned. The annexation of the Crimea illegal. The battle group in the Baltic States is a very restrained response to Russia's aggression against Ukraine. NATO is not a threat to Russia.
The nature of war
It is quite clear that the relations between Russia and Western countries is now worse than ever in a long time. The Swedish Committee on defence in its latest report claims that the attack on Sweden can not be excluded.
The Finnish government has been informed about the same.
But if you start a new big war, how it will look? A new report from the American analytical center Rand describes, how Russia is likely to generate conflict.
1. Defence will be attack
Russian armed forces are placed and distributed so as to protect the country.
But the arms build-up in the last ten years has provided Russia a powerful non-nuclear forces that can be used outside of the country.
"Russian military theorists have a strong commitment to assault. Their view mostly is that the best defense at the tactical and operational level is an intensive attack. If Russian leaders decide that conflict is inevitable, they will have a strong incentive to seize the initiative and go on the attack," writes Rand.
The Swedish defence research Institute (FOI) in its latest report has announced that Russia's military potential will be enough to conduct an offensive in two directions simultaneously, leaving for 15 thousand people in each direction.
To attack the West, Russia may collect 14-19 airborne assault brigades, supported by artillery, land-based rocket launchers, air defense systems and 220 fighters.
© RIA Novosti, Sergei Maligawa. Anti-aircraft missile system s-400 "Triumph" air defense regiment in Feodosia
Total will be 150 thousand people, of which two thirds belong to the ground forces.
For comparison, Sweden on paper there are two teams, but on the battlefield in the short term it will be difficult to collect even one.
2. Quick mobilization
Russian ground forces no longer consist of large compounds with low readiness that need much time to mobilize. Now rely on smaller combat units, who are constantly at hand.
Connection learn quickly to mobilize, throwing power together with all the Arsenal in different points of Russia.
Most of the 60 documented Russian crews (including ground army, Marines and airborne units) may, according to Rand, to provide one to two combat battalions, consisting of fully professional soldiers.
3. A powerful blow, quick cum
Russia ammunition and economic resources much inferior to the USA, European countries members of NATO or China, and the conflict will give them more and more.
Therefore, most likely, Russia will try to reach their goals quickly and then try to end the conflict on favorable terms, for example, threatening with nuclear weapons.
For fast operations, Russia will resort to a small elite troops that you can use for a short time: for example, airborne troops, Marines, special forces. They are very mobile, but can still go to the battlefield with banyankole and to perform complex operations with the other troops.
4. Cut off the head
Russia in case of conflict, would put as a priority the weakening of the leadership of the enemy and his communications.
It could be:
- about the destruction of the places where being out of control or means of communication with long-range weapons, such as ballistic missiles, or neutralize them with, say, cyber-attacks;
- the introduction of the enemy troops by concealing or using false information or baits;
- about the promotion so fast that the enemy will be at least time to prepare responses.
5. Air defense provides a local advantage
Russia is intensively investing in air and missile defense, providing the most complex and an elaborate air defense network in the world. Russian ground forces are also usually protected by powerful defense systems.
If none of the parties will not be able to operate freely in the air, Russia will have a big advantage on the ground thanks to her superiority in ground firepower.
6. To block and beat the storm with fire
Russia has a serious advantage in terms of indirect (indirect) fire and ability to concentrate fire quickly and efficiently.
While the American brigade normally supports a battalion of artillery, the Russian often cover two battalions of self-propelled howitzers and a battalion of rocket artillery.
Therefore, Russia will not try to meet an equal opponent face to face, but rather by maneuvers will try to fix and lock it, then to destroy a storm of artillery fire.
The Finnish response
Finnish armed forces in recent years have changed their doctrine on ground combat.
Approved defence lines and trenches left over from world war II, will be removed and the new doctrine will be based on smaller, more maneuverable compounds that can quickly mobilize to deliver a powerful blow, and then retreat.
Rather, the goal is to inflict as much damage and undermine its will to continue the war, not to protect certain geographical points.
"It became clear the probable course of hostilities. Large separate connections, such as brigades, would be destroyed pretty quickly. Small outdoor units can be concentrated to achieve some effect in a certain area, and then split up again," says Charlie Salonius-Pasternak (Charly Salonius-Pasternak).
It is relatively easy to force the soldier to dig in on defense and wait. The new system requires much more from each individual soldier. "It requires a strong mentality and the ability to communicate, including reservists, and it is therefore necessary to devote more exercise," says Charlie Salonius-Pasternak.
Despite all the speculation, no one really knew how will look like conflict.
"Believability that it will happen the way we planned and planned, is practically zero. We are talking about a real live opponent. Even in chess, where you can see all the opponent's pieces, unexpected events. We can't say when, where and why, but that was not so, as usual, and a bit of a surprise. It will not just little green men, but with distinctive features," says Charlie Salonius-Pasternak.
The Russian military forces: Western theater of military operations
There are three armies and one army corps, which in total included 15 air assault brigades, and three airborne brigades.
Western strategic command, the headquarters in St. Petersburg.
The 6th army headquarters in St. Petersburg — three teams.
20th army headquarters in Voronezh — four teams.
1st Panzer army, headquarters in Moscow — five teams, divided into two infantry divisions and four armored divisions.
11th army corps, headquarters in Kaliningrad — three teams, namely, 79th infantry brigade 7th motorized rifle brigade and 336 brigade of Marines.
© RIA Novosti, Igor Zarembo. Russian-Belarusian military exercises "West-2017" in the Kaliningrad region
Landing connection: 76th airborne brigade, the 98th airborne-assault brigade, the 106th airborne assault brigade.
Support: three artillery brigades, three anti-aircraft brigades, three missile brigades, one brigade of radiation, chemical and biological protection, three engineering and two logistics brigades.
Note: This compounds which are in full readiness in the Western military district. In the event of war in the West, Russia will probably pull together additional resources from other military districts.
Niklas Vent (Vent Niclas)
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