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Thread: The Russian Military: Declining or Better?

  1. #121
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    You must register to get this article...but well worth reading.....

    Russia's Art of War
    https://www.foreignaffairs.com/artic...id=soc-tw-rdr#

  2. #122
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    Norwegian military intelligence warns of increased threats from Russia
    http://dlvr.it/NJmgfr

  3. #123
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    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09 View Post
    Will Belarus Be Putin’s Next Victim?
    Another Kremlin-driven crisis may be coming to Eastern Europe

    http://observer.com/2017/02/belarus-...ladimir-putin/
    I'm not sure what Schindler is adding here that Beckhusen didn't two days earlier...

    As for the scenario of Polish interference in Belarus, there isn't any evidence that this scenario is being taken seriously by the administration. As you have yourself complained, the NSC is comprised of hundreds of people and no doubt confusion is reigning more than it did during Obama's tenure, when Rice and Rhodes held sway.

    Having said that, Poland does watch Minsk quite closely and uses its proximity to Belarus and the presence of ethnic Poles there to gather intelligence on its neighbor. Both Minsk and Moscow have taken a dim view of Polish espionage and subversion (pro-democracy activism) in Belarus, but I have no doubt that Minsk now sees Poland as an interlocutor.

    If the NSC were looking to learn more about developments inside Belarus that only HUMINT could provide, it would turn to Warsaw. It is quite possible that Polish contacts in Belarus and Russia's propaganda about a Polish invasion of Belarus have become confused.

    Schindler is criticizing an administration that has not found its bearings yet, and yet it has incredibly capable people as Secretaries of State and Defense (albeit Carter is my favorite since Cheney). As with most people upset at Trump's election victory, Schindler seems to conflate what Obama did do (not much) with what Hillary might have done (stronger support for Ukraine). Just because John "Bloviator" Kerry and Samantha Power aren't around to lecture Russia in the media and at the UN, doesn't mean that Trump is less interested in the fate of Ukraine or Belarus than Obama was.

    If Trump is as isolationist and as pro-Russian as the Neo-Conservatives and Liberal Interventionists claim, then why would Lukashenko throw down the gauntlet now? You would think that Lukashenko would have forced the issue when Obama was in power and when he was more likely to receive assistance, no?

    You may want to consider that the foreign policy platform upon which Obama was elected called for the withdrawal of US forces from Iraq, an end to major ground combat operations, an end to foreign interventions, reductions in defense spending, less security engagement overseas and the de-prioritization of foreign policy in favor of the domestic economy. Obama has attempted to stay within that mandate, Libya notwithstanding, and has been subjected to anti-war criticism from both the Democrats and Republicans. Had Hillary Clinton, Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio or Ted Cruz been elected, Congress and Americans would have seized on any increase in defense spending or military activity overseas. Yet Trump's election has erased the memory of the Iraq War and caused a surge in the willingness of Americans to confront Russian aggression and support NATO. Interesting times to be sure. Perhaps Lukashenko believes that his position is stronger now than during the past 8 years?

    Below are Belorussian AFVs using newspaper as camouflage. Lukashenko has every reason to be worried.

    Last edited by Azor; 02-07-2017 at 06:59 PM.

  4. #124
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    Quote Originally Posted by OUTLAW 09 View Post
    Russia MoD tv: S400 fired during combat readiness tests in Kaliningrad, just 80 miles from Poland.
    Kaliningrad borders Poland.

    There are heavy US ground forces in Estonia and Poland, both of which border Russia.

    In addition, rumor has it that Alaska is creeping east, hoping to seal off Bering.

  5. #125
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Moderator at work

    I am trying to keep the Ukraine at War thread focused on events within the war, with some other factors. So I have just moved six posts on Russian military activity and the speculation on the future of Belarus to here.
    davidbfpo

  6. #126
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    Default Gersasimov Doctrine rotating back towards hard power?

    Gerasimov Revamps Russian Military Hard Power, Based on Syria Lessons
    Publication: Eurasia Daily Monitor Volume: 14 Issue: 14
    By: Roger McDermott

    https://jamestown.org/program/gerasi...syria-lessons/

    While the reputation and prestige of Russia’s Armed Forces was damaged abroad by its involvement in Ukraine, the intervention in Syria has been reaping dividends both at home and abroad. The General Staff attaches greater importance to learning lessons based on the Syria conflict than its performance in Donbas (eastern Ukraine). Recent statements by the top brass as well as the promotion of the Russian commander of operations in Syria point to the overall utility of this conflict in Russia’s force development. It is less clear as to what the lessons are for Moscow and how these may be applied to Russian military strategy in the future (Krasnaya Zvezda, February 5).

    From the outset of Russia’s first foreign military intervention beyond the former Soviet Union since Afghanistan (1979–1989), the country’s media has transitioned from speculation concerning the risks of conflict escalation and possible embroilment on the ground to a recognition that the Kremlin’s relatively low-key intervention has avoided such traps (Ekspert, RIA Novosti, accessed, February 7). Moscow has used force at a minimal level to influence the politics of the conflict much more than the war. Across the Russian media there is widespread praise for the role of the country’s Armed Forces since the intervention began in the fall of 2015, but little attention to anything that went wrong (RIA Novosti, accessed, February 7).

    Judging by such news coverage, the Russian campaign in Syria is well used to praise, implying the General Staff is left only with the challenge of incorporating some of this into future military planning while excluding a lessons-learned approach. The ongoing nature of the operation renders a full assessment premature at best. Nonetheless, it certainly is difficult to ascertain what may have gone wrong and how the General Staff could remedy such issues. According to the chief of the General Staff, Army-General Valery Gerasimov, the Syria conflict is simply way beyond Russia’s experience of conflict in terms of magnitude and importance. As such, Gerasimov suggests that the officer promotion policy should now prioritize officers with combat experience from operations in Syria (Krasnaya Zvezda, February 5).

    Gerasimov based this on the assertion that real officers are “born in combat,” rather than trained and educated, which he sees as a path to produce only competent administrators. He also assesses the experience in Syria as “priceless” for the Russian military. Gerasimov notes the high priority during the campaign for the Aerospace Forces (Vozdushno Kosmicheskikh Sil—VKS), but also states that other branches and arms of service gained invaluable experience. Gerasimov notes, “We need real military leaders in every sphere of the armed struggle.” This also, therefore, relates to ground forces commanders as well as the VKS and other services operating in Syria, including the special forces. The purpose is to foster initiative among strong-minded and energetic commanders who will be better equipped to secure future objectives in conflict. It seems this experience was narrower and less useful in Donbas, at least in Gerasimov’s estimation (Gazeta.ru, February 4). Gerasimov also highly esteems the role of Russian military advisors working closely with the Syrian Arab Army (SAA), though sometimes compelled to step into combat roles due to the degradation of the SAA. Underscoring these views, in September 2016, the commander of the Russian operation in Syria, Colonel-General Aleksandr Dvornikov, was appointed to command the Southern Military District (Izvestia, September 20, 2016; see EDM, July 26, 2016).

    An analysis of the Russian military’s performance in Syria, published last year by the Moscow-based Center for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies, Siriyskiy Rubezh, outlined among a number of themes the operational achievements of the campaign to the summer of 2016. The same book, however, also stresses the highly impressive logistical achievement by Russian combat-service support in moving supplies across great distances through air and sea lines of supply. Its summary of the operational success in Syria suggests it should be seen as an unprecedented performance by the VKS: as of July 2016, the VKS had sustained only one operational loss, the Su-24M shot down by the Turkish Air Force. And among three helicopter losses, only one resulted from combat. The campaign in Syria offered the VKS an opportunity to test new systems and tactics. Moreover, the air campaign had interdicted rebel and terrorist supply lines, inflicted high levels of damage on enemy forces, and arguably prevented the downfall of President Bashar al-Assad’s regime. It also promotes the idea that since the VKS gained significantly more operational experience in Syria compared to air operations in the August 2008 Russia-Georgia War, the Syrian experience will be used exponentially in the development of the Russian Armed Forces. The work reflects the sine quo non of Russia’s role in the conflict as affording a testing ground for the Russian military, but offers no clear insight as to the purpose or unifying trends of what the testing was about.

    Of course, such assessments risk ignoring the simple fact that the operation and, indeed, the civil war in Syria is not yet over. Much remains at stake in deciding the conflict, handling the ensuing peace, and trying to cobble together a working arrangement between the interested parties. Some Russian Middle East specialists see parallels with Moscow’s experience of the Civil War in Tajikistan in the 1990s, with the need to pacify or stem a flow of militants toward Russia’s borders followed by declining interest in the years afterward. How the Russian military handles the remainder of its conflict involvement may prove just as important as how it entered in the first place and conducted its various divergent missions (Voyenno Promyshlennyy Kuryer, January 31, 2017; Utro.ru, December 21, 2016).

    Syria is now being put forward as the cornerstone for future Russian officer promotion, presumably to capture some of these lessons and instil higher standards in a new generation of officers. The defense ministry boasts that 95 percent of all officer posts are now filled as well as commanding more attention to incoming officers on the part of their superiors (Krasnaya Zvezda, February 5).

    Although Gerasimov confirmed the importance of the Syria campaign for Russia’s military development as an experience above recent conflicts, he also had something unusual to say: Returning to his theme expressed in 2013 considering the ratio between soft and hard power in modern warfare as “4:1,” Gerasimov recently told the General Staff Academy that hard power is no less valuable (Krasnaya Zvezda, February 5). Perhaps this is the fundamental lesson for the top brass.

  7. #127
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    Default Russia is powerful without tanks & more

    An interesting commentary by a UK defence academic, Dr. Rod Thornton an ex-soldier and IIRC has been teaching in Kurdistan of late - so able to watch events locally.

    He poses two questions, actually at the end:
    why would the Russian military need to consider the conventional use of force? What utility does it have?
    He opens with:
    Russian military thinking seems to have reached the point now where the idea of using force intentionally in conflicts with peer-state adversaries has been almost completely ruled out. This seems a radical move. But there has been a clear recognition within this military that better strategic outcomes for Russia will result from the use of non-violent ‘asymmetric warfare’ activities rather than those which will or can involve the use of force – such as conventional war or hybrid warfare.
    Link:https://defenceindepth.co/2017/02/17...etric-warfare/
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 02-17-2017 at 10:11 AM. Reason: 72,026v
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  8. #128
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    Russian non linear warfare hard at work......

    Russian private mercenaries for hybrid warfare
    https://informnapalm.org/en/russian-...ol-of-terror/#


    Russian 'private military companies' are a “tool for the implementation of national interests without the direct participation of the state“
    Translation: Putin's special ops forces not connected to the Russian state/FSB/GRU. Except for the law permitting their existence.
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    Last edited by davidbfpo; 02-26-2017 at 07:06 PM. Reason: Moved from Ukraine 2017 thread, sits better here.

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    Check this out and note the number of car accidents
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    Last edited by davidbfpo; 02-26-2017 at 07:06 PM. Reason: Moved from Ukraine 2017 thread, sits better here.

  10. #130
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    NATO officials concerned about degree of closure & final range at which #Russia's aircraft approached NATO planes
    http://www.atlanticcouncil.org/blogs...-a-single-day#

    NATO had 3 encounters with #Russia's Su-24 attack aircraft & 4th was with Ilyushin Il-38 maritime patrol aircraft
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 03-02-2017 at 08:12 PM. Reason: Moved from Ukraine thread

  11. #131
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    RIA claims that Iodine-131 leak came from Ukraine by fake-quoting The Barents Observer.


    Rostec CEO says KRET working on a counter-drone system which fries their onboard electronics.
    http://tass.ru/armiya-i-opk/4087648#

    CEO of Rostech: Rus (@KRETRussia ) has EW sys/s to burn up "Perdix" UAV electronics. UAV becomes "useless piece of iron".
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    Last edited by OUTLAW 09; 03-12-2017 at 12:56 PM.

  12. #132
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    Russian UAV «Orlan» used for artillery recognisance during recent exercise near Saint Petersburg
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    Russian UAV operators during recent exercise near Saint Petersburg
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    Russia: Almost 6,000 troops have been alerted in military units in the Southern Military District in a sudden combat readiness check.
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    Actually an important article as it goes back to what the west would watch for in the Soviet exercises in the 80s.....

    WELL worth reading thoroughly in light of previous Russian snap exercises that exercised Russian attacks on Poland..Sweden and Estonia...

    REMEMBER Russia has never registered any of their snap exercises in advance with OSCE requirements nor allowed western observers as required and as NATO allows....

    Rekindled Train Wagon Debate Calls Into Question Planned Size for ‘Zapad 2017’ Exercise #Russia
    https://jamestown.org/program/rekind...017-exercise/#
    Last edited by OUTLAW 09; 03-14-2017 at 09:40 AM.

  16. #136
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    Another threat from Russia, via MoD/Armed Forces TV: "Europe is afraid of Russian submarines in Gibraltar"
    https://twitter.com/zvezdanews/statu...7111978672129#

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    Again NATO SIGINT on the move.....

    UK RC135W ZZ664 ASCT7145 heading east over the North Sea...

    AND at almost the same time.....

    Latitude 67N SIGINT‏#@Sigint67n 2h
    2 hours ago
    RuAF VHF traffic in the Gulf of Finland consistent with tactical aircraft - Ladoga started?

  18. #138
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    New @amsecproject tracker of #Russia's Military Incidents. By @vasquezja1
    http://www.americansecurityproject.o...dent-tracker/#

  19. #139
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    Russian Pantsir-S1 combined short-medium range SAM and AA artillery weapon system exercises in Kaliningrad region
    http://tvzvezda.ru/news/forces/conte...1856-5q93.htm#

  20. #140
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    Default Moderator at work

    I am trying to keep the Ukraine at War thread focused on events within the war, with some other factors. So I have just moved seven posts on Russian military activity to here.
    davidbfpo

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