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Cotton wall: reflections of an officer of the special intelligence...
Material posted: Valetskiy OlegPublication date: 07-06-2013

The article "Quilted wall..." Sergei Podergivaniah was published a few years ago on the site of Military intelligence,but its relevance is not lost

Armed forces, force structure primarily designed to ensure the security of the state from external military threats. Bad practice orienteering army special forces to perform the tasks of "fighting terrorism" within the country, and not abroad, as do those of special operations Forces of the U.S. and other countries, is not good for him.

The distance from the special forces reconnaissance and sabotage part of its combat mission, but military intelligence from reconnaissance missions does not fit with "the security of States from external military threats". An attempt to separate the officers to reach out to "higher authorities" with specific proposals for improving the system of combat training of troops, requiring a minimum investment of budget funds (for the sake of modern financial economists) cotton meets the wall, any shock which is extinguished by officials of various stripes. From the concrete walls even though the buzz is that cotton absorbs everything...

Almost all of the modern army of the world's States are composed of reconnaissance and sabotage forces, traditionally referred to as special forces. The special forces of the Russian Armed Forces on 24 October 2005 officially 56 years old, but its history goes back to the time of the campaigns of the ancient Russian Prince Oleg and Svyatoslav, action housing korolenkov Peter the great, the partisan Denis Davydov formations in the war of 1812, the Cossacks of the Russian army scouts and sabotage units of the red army. Part (communication) of a special purpose of Russian Armed forces is intended to refer to the intelligence and effectively subordinated to the Main intelligence Directorate of the General staff of GRU GSH.

According to all guidance documents, intelligence is considered as one of the main types of combat support. But the actions of special forces in modern warfare are not just providing a character, and are and form independent fighting. In Afghanistan, these actions are called the "reconnaissance combat", in the North Caucasus - "search and ambush". Both of these concepts did not disclose the essence of the combat use of intelligence agencies for special purposes. Now in everyday life introduced the concept of special action.


Afghan lessons

Finest hour Patriotic special forces was the "Afghan war". Army special forces were best suited to the conditions of counterinsurgency war in a mountainous-desert terrain of Central Asia. In the mid eighties of the last century, the Soviet spetsnaz in Afghanistan represented the formidable force to be reckoned with not only field commanders of the Afghan bandit formations and their Western backers - "...the only Soviet forces that have successfully fought in Afghanistan were special operation forces, acting on the helicopter" - the newspaper "Washington post" of July 6, 1989. Effective action of the Soviet forces in Afghanistan, would not have been conceivable without its close cooperation with other branches of the military, and especially with army aviation (helicopters).

Acting suddenly, decisively and boldly, relatively few reconnaissance groups and special forces groups caused the enemy considerable loss in manpower and arms. The Soviet spetsnaz significantly limited sabotage and terrorist activities of the Afghan militants. As a result of special operation "the Veil", which aims to "stem the caravans of terror", intelligence agencies have significantly restricted, and in some areas and completely thwarted the delivery of arms, ammunition and equipment to the Afghan Mujahideen from neighbouring Pakistan and Iran. "Only in 1987 by spetsnaz units intercepted and destroyed 332 of the caravan with weapons and ammunition, which did not allow the leadership of the rebels to put in the internal province of Afghanistan more than 290 pieces of heavy weapons (recoilless rifles, mortars, heavy machine guns - approx. ed.), 80 MANPADS, PU 30 MS, more than 15 thousand anti-tank and anti-personnel mines, 8 million rounds for small arms... So every fifth mortar and DShK, every fourth piece of small arms, RPGs, every third, every second recoilless gun were taken in battle scouts" (of order 40 of the headquarters of the combined arms army) And this despite the number of special forces not exceeding ten per cent of the total OXV in Afghanistan.

Until 1979 the army special forces had no experience of the fight against irregular armed groups. The main purpose of the special intelligence was the intelligence-subversive activity in the rear of the regular troops of the enemy. The complexity kontrpartiya fight in Afghanistan scouts of knowledge in practice - similar to the postwar experience of the red Army and the NKVD-MGB in Central Asia, Western Ukraine and the Baltic States had in good faith forgotten, or were kept behind seven seals.

Poslavsky for the entire period, in contrast to North Americans who made serious conclusions after the defeat in Vietnam, the chaos of the Gorbachev of destroying the country, we did not have time to draw the necessary lessons from the military "Afghan war". The war in which we suffered no military defeat, but paid for the mistakes of politicians more than thirteen thousand lives. The loss of the special forces dead was about 900 people

Now, the uniquely Afghan experience, mostly positive, already forgotten. Not made timely conclusions and actions of the Patriotic forces in the North Caucasus, the special forces of foreign countries in local wars and armed conflicts of modernity (Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Lebanon).


To write or not to write?

What can explain numerous publications in the press of combat experiences of the special forces? Only the lack of understanding on the part of officials of the importance of the analysis and implementation of combat experience in the practice of training and combat application of troops. Combat veterans, without having reached the door of the officials, to share their experiences with colleagues through open sources of information - print and online. Let's leave the moral and legal aspect of the problem. Yes, our potential opponent may use the information obtained from open sources. And gets... in the form of the book "guerrilla war in Afghanistan", published for the first time the Command of the U.S. marine corps in 1996, and analysing over 300(!) examples of clashes, "Afghan rebels" with Soviet and Afghan troops. And with quite truthful stories of the leaders of the gangs, maps, diagrams, and actions... recommendations. Not less eloquently described "the exploits of Afghan fighters for the faith" in the book of the officer of intelligence of Pakistan Mohammad Yusuf and CIA agent Mark Adkin "Trap for the bear". Hundreds of instructions and directions labeled "All Modjahedin Force" exhibited on Internet sites. Moreover, this literature for extremist organizations more accessible than Russian troops (to buy on the salary of the computer and to connect to the network, not everyone can afford). Those who calls himself a "Mujahideen", in whatever part of the world they haven "Jihad", very quickly share experience of the armed struggle. This explains the copying of Chechen fighters of the tactics of the anti-Mullah group Namangani in Tajikistan (autumn 1992), and the action "Hezbollah" in Lebanon, Chechen experience . Israelite, analyzing the loss of their armored vehicles and manpower in Lebanon, concluded that the militants "Hezbollah" all repeated the experience of conducting defensive battles in Chechen fighters in Grozny.

Those who are not encumbered by misunderstandings of the official rules and regulations, not rarely lost its relevance even during long-term development and adoption of practices far from the people who are in a better position. The example of captain Edward Ulman, acting in accordance with the requirements... are not articulated, eloquent proof. He guided competently written military code, the Law on States of emergency (contrary to all logic, so is not entered in due time in the Chechen Republic) and other legal acts, demand it was the other...


Unclaimed experience

Return to the experience of the Soviet and Vietnamese guerrillas, the Afghan Mujahideen, the Iraqi insurgents, Chechen and Lebanese fighters in the confrontation between the regular army of the enemy. Who does not like Russian special forces, you need a thorough study. After all, the commandos must be prepared to perform reconnaissance and sabotage tasks behind enemy lines. God forbid repetition of the tragic experience of 1941-1942, when on the eve of the great Patriotic war were repressed commanders and officials preparing in case of war organized guerrilla movement. After all, we come here in the summer of 1941 to guerrilla warfare on a professional level, it is unlikely that the Germans have reached Moscow. Reconnaissance and sabotage groups is to act on the stretched communications of the Germans, depriving shock mechanized parts of the Wehrmacht of fuel and ammunition, the headquarters of sustainable radio and telephone communications, not to mention informing the headquarters about the enemy. On this and many other wrote in his writings of the legendary spy-saboteur Ilya Starinov. Now it works, which of his conclusions formed the basis of combat application and practice of combat training of reconnaissance and sabotage units? Alas, to boast of... But there is something to be ashamed of. For our officials from intelligence shyly pulled of jargon the notion of "sabotage", "intelligence-saboteur" (in the red Army there was such a position), and identifying the notion of "reconnaissance and sabotage actions," with "subversive and terrorist acts". Ashamed "of the Lord" - not comrades...

In every war and armed conflict sweat and blood have been developed and perfected the tactics of action that optimally respond to the specific conditions of operational-combat situation. But time passed, changed the military-political situation, left the experienced intelligence officers, and paid for with the blood of combat experience had been forgotten. Forgotten, doesn't mean no demand.

Unfortunately, during the campaign for the restoration of constitutional order in the Chechen Republic ("first Chechen war"), and the conduct of counter-terrorist operation in the North Caucasus region (the"second Chechen war") was not used even by the Afghan experience. The only exception was occasional episodes of special actions organization, management and provision, but in the merit of individual soldiers only media unique combat experience rather than systematic analysis and implementation in practice of combat application of troops.

Compare Afghanistan and Chechnya is not correct. Despite the seeming similarity shared tasks - combating gangs, operational and combat situation in both conflicts was completely different. Moreover, in Chechnya, and divisions of the Ministry of defense and the MIA of Russia were deprived of the level of support recorded in Afghanistan. Asking the question - why? Come to the conclusion - there is no system, it reformed, read - disorganized... there is No systematic approach to the preparation of professional personnel (soldiers, sergeants, and most importantly, the officer corps), to manage the forces and means of combat, technical and rear provision of troops. This affected all forces and means of armed struggle and the spetsnaz is no exception.


Spirit single

Despite the incredible decline of moral principles and the absence of any ideology besides "hack loot and enjoy", the officer corps of the country has kept the morale of the older generation of defenders of the Motherland and their ancestors. The actions of some (unfortunately only some) of military personnel, units, parts, and power departments of Russia at performance of fighting tasks of Severnom the Caucasus deserve the highest praise. High morale kept the airborne troops of the special forces of the Ministry of defence, special forces of internal troops of the Ministry of internal Affairs, employees of special forces of the Ministry of internal Affairs and FSB of Russia. We can only guess who and what can be the object of the next stage of "reform" of the army, if the authorities in the country will come again perestroyika and Pro-Western reformers.

Fortunately, in recent years there has been some progress in strengthening the defense capability and security of our country. The army, until recently keeping in the morale and the enthusiasm of commanders, chiefs and military groups, will start to receive modern weapons, were again carried out military exercises, begins to solve the housing problem.

The main thing - not to allow kinking. Some destructive force, for example, may have orientation of the Russian Armed forces to "combat terrorism". Abandoned from overseas bait - "stand up against terrorism!", already performs a specific destructive role. Imbalances of the combat training of reconnaissance units led to that some of the officers-scouts unable to distinguish domestic from foreign fighter. Fifteen years ago in the reconnaissance divisions even soldiers conscripts could produce basic interrogation of prisoners in one foreign language, to know the structure of units of foreign armies, the markings and characteristics of foreign military equipment is better than other current intelligence officers...


Learn from the enemy

Corrosive the reader to catch the author at his word - what is the linkage between the Afghan experience of the struggle against irregular armed groups and knowledge of foreign armies and ways of action of the regular forces of the enemy and actions of intelligence agencies in their the rear? Direct. Performing combat missions in Afghanistan, razvedochny operated under similar operational-combat situation in the rear of the regular army of the enemy. The Afghan armed opposition, consisting of about one million people, was merged into dozens of fronts, composed by 1988 1335 of combat units and groups. In the mountains, deserts and valleys of Afghanistan to the Soviet forces confronted virtually the regular army of the opponent, having a well controlled rear with territorial defense, air defense, intelligence, logistics, communications and reporting. There were rebels of modern small arms and antitank weapons, ammunition engineering, artillery systems and anti-aircraft weapons. The most important conditions for successful actions of intelligence agencies, the special forces were stealth, when you clash with the enemy rapidity of action and close cooperation with supporting aviation and artillery is all that is required for successful operations in the rear of the regular army of the enemy. And techniques actions of the Mujahideen, well understood by our troops in Afghanistan can serve as an example to follow... or not repeating mistakes.

Such errors as were made by the bandit group Gelaeva in December 2003 in Dagestan. On one of her only mistakes can teach our scouts to operate behind enemy lines, and what techniques and methods to eliminate these bandits. But this unique experience was waved away. The word is the only example of the two "Chechen wars" when in the course of the special operation all the members of the gang were killed or captured. All!


... Intelligence or intelligence - there is no other way

Orienteering army special forces and military intelligence on the "war on terror" at the end of the active phase of the counterterrorist operation in the Chechen Republic, the imperfection of the legal framework of the use of military weapons; and the lack of clear requirements of the guidelines, undermine the main mission of the army special forces and reconnaissance and sabotage activities, as such, the concept, even without the additions - behind enemy lines. The lack of registration of "behind enemy lines" due to the urgency of such tasks not only in the rear of the regular army of the enemy, but on the territory controlled by irregular armed groups, and individual leaders and infrastructure of the gangs and abroad...

Upon completion of the military phase of the antiterrorist operation in the North Caucasus, special forces actually turned into a field gendarmerie (gendarmerie not abusive, that is what it became after the coming to power of Bolsheviks in 1917 - approx. author), the functions of which are designed to address military units and special forces of Internal troops of Russia. The scouts are not performing their functions very harmful, first of all, the destruction of the sense of belonging to the caste of the troops scouts. To explain in words this feeling, like the feeling of love is difficult, but to the uninitiated in intelligence enough to remember literary examples or episodes of really artistic films about the scouts, not from the current telescreen. After analyzing them, you can get an idea about the concept of Honor scout, the sense of camaraderie and zealous regard to the fulfilment of the combat task, the dedication and the Fatherland, and even courage.

Intelligence without courage - that the cattle without feed - dying. The attempt to separate army officials to deprive the scouts of a certain spirit of freedom (not to be confused with permissiveness and lack of discipline), both in daily training and in the choice of methods and means of combat mission, will certainly lead to unfortunate consequences. It is the freedom of the commander of the reconnaissance element in the choice of methods and ways of action due to the high efficiency of actions of the special forces in Afghanistan and other hot spots. Among the most successful commanders of the reconnaissance groups and detachments, with rare exception, were exemplary in all of the lifers. The bulk of the Intelligence is quite extraordinary personalities with an inherent share of reasonable "sloppiness". While fighting is going on they are quite satisfied with crunched teeth superiors, redeeming their "everyday" sins of the German "languages" and valuable documents captured (Great Patriotic war), destroyed caravans and bases of armed groups (Afghanistan), liquidated the leaders and members of bandit groups (North Caucasus region) and other military achievements. In peace the same army life, such people very quickly become objectionable to "the yard", talking briefly with Junior..., senior - obsolete-scenes intrigue. No wonder the military has an expression that some officers can prove himself in war, others in civilian life. Those who wins the war, unfortunately, lose in civilian life (Marshal of the Victory Georgy Zhukov is a good example). From this, does not require evidence of axioms, the first is not becoming easier. But the Armed forces when transitioning to civilian life losing my best military officers, "hung with" reprimands "for negligent... for failing... failure... low rigor... assumption of security breach...".

In any situation, including this one, there is a way - as you know the truth lies in the middle of the two extremes. But the trouble army, that the captains, with rare exception, are not ready to compromise. Especially sharply this problem arises, when the intelligence come indifferent to it or worse, dislike it, trying to make it in the ranks of the elements of the "soldatesca" and "Granovsky". They paralyse any initiative on the ground, trying everything to make "parallel and perpendicular". As a rule, with the arrival of such people to the management or control of the exploration all the better: for years and generations of accumulated experience and traditions, innovative ideas and desire to change things for the better give in to a tough audit or ignored in favor of short-term political interests and personal career ambitions.

Quilted wall...

Sergey Podozrevat


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