Only the next time, the consequences could be far worse. Russia rushed in at the endgame to make a dramatic gesture of deploying its share of the peacekeeping force into Kosovo. Three immediate implications for Russian military planners suggest themselves. Tactical flexibility will be a necessary condition for the accomplishment of battlefield objectives that would otherwise remain at risk. Soviet operations in the Great Patriotic War were designed for a command and control system that maximized the flexibility of operational and strategic commanders, at the expense of very restrictive guidelines for tactical commanders in the Soviet ground forces, division or lower.
Third, offensive and defensive information warfare, including both information-supported military operations and information-based psychological warfare against enemy societies, moves to the head of the lecture circuit among topics in the armed forces general staff syllabus. Russia has now seen the United States fight four wars or multinational peace operations based more or less on information superiority: Operation Desert Storm in ; Kosovo in ; Afghanistan in ; and Iraq, in Although armed forces are frequently studied from the perspectives of their military doctrine or combat tactics, they are less frequently analyzed as holistic institutions subject to periods of institutional steadiness or stress.
Beyond a certain point, incremental adaptation to a radically different environment is no longer possible: the organization must change its institutional ethos or cease to function with the same set of role perceptions. It can continue as an organization but not as the same institution it once was. In the judgment of some leading post-Soviet Russian commanders, Russia had no option but to adapt to this information-based military template:.
Moreover, the primary targets in the course of the conflict were clearly specified: key installations of the economic infrastructure, elements of the state and military command and control system, and lines of transportation. The diffusion of the appropriate portable and desktop workstations and information bases throughout the Russian armed forces chain of command must certainly affect everything else that armed forces do. There is a curvilinear relationship between the ability of communications and electronics technology to augment combat effectiveness and the eventual and additional vulnerability that this technology establishes, once forces have become dependent on it.
A particular concern for the Russian armed forces would be the danger of having tactical units isolated and cut off from one another. Such an outcome is not inconceivable to Soviet military planners; it happened to them in the week following 22 June The U. The first side to lose its command, control and communications may also lose its combat stability and thus, its ability to fight a war with small unit cohesion and combat system interdependence. If, for example, the tactical air or air defense component of a modern ground force can be electronically isolated from the remainder of the force, then the remnants of that force can be swallowed up at the discretion of the opponent.
Future generations of war-winning strategies below the threshold of nuclear escalation may have to rely on the 'implosion' of the opponent's command and control system and the subsequent collapse of the opponent's ability to coordinate the use of formations of various sizes and composition. However, Russian military planners might reasonably assume that the initial period of war can be one of great danger. What seems politically absurd in a day and age of U.
Russian and Soviet historical experience so dictates. As the authoritative strategic assessment group Stratfor noted in April, The Russians can conceive of it. They remember that Germany in was crippled. By it was overwhelmingly powerful. Six years is not very long, and while such an evolution is unlikely now, from the Russian point of view, it must be taken seriously in the long run — planning for the worst and hoping for the best.
Russian intelligence will place equally high importance on the detection of enemy political decision to attack strategic warning as on the acquisition of order-of-battle data and other information essential for response to tactical warning. In this regard, the U. Reaching agreement on the reduction or elimination of European non-strategic nuclear weapons may present both domestic and foreign policy difficulties.
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The Russian government attitude toward TNW appears to represent a complex mix of domestic and bureaucratic politics, mis perceptions, and idiosyncrasies. Russia is threatened neither primarily nor immediately by NATO. Preparedness for these contingencies of limited and local wars, regular and irregular, will require a smaller, more professional and more mobile military than post-Soviet Russia has fielded hitherto As Lilia Shevtsova has explained, the primary objective of the Russian system domestically is to preserve the monopoly of power held by the ruling elite.
As she explains, Russian foreign and security policies have to pursue apparently contradictory paths:. Of course, whether domestic or international influences act as independent or interdependent variables is highly situational. Grateful acknowledgment is made to Stephen J. Blank, David M. Glantz, Dale R. Kipp, and Timothy L. Thomas for insights into this topic, and appreciation is also extended to Elisabeth Sieca-Kozlowski for editorial suggestions.
They bear no responsibility for any arguments or opinions stated hererin. Ivanov, Nachal'nyi period voiny: po opytu pervykh kampanii I operatsii vtoroi mirovoi voiny , Moscow: Voenizdat, Rostunov Ed. I, Moscow: Nauka, , Ch. See, for example Lt. See also A. Grechko, et. For an appraisal of Soviet threat assessment between the two world wars, see J. May Ed.
The scale of strategic operations increased accordingly. See B. Panov, V. Kiselev, I. Kartavtsev, et. David M. For a discussion, see Ch. On the impact of nuclear weapons on Soviet military thought, see D. Nekrich, 22 Iiunia, Moscow, Nauka, , in V. Petrov Ed. This source also contains excerpts from debates among Soviet military historians about the responsibility for Barbarossa.
Muslims, high technology, and the Soviet military - Persée
Erickson, The Soviet High Command. Martin's Press, , pp. See also M. Svechin, Strategiia, Moscow, Voyenizdat, , esp. I gratefully acknowledge Sally Stoecker for helpful insights here. Wohlstctter and R. Carter, J. Steinbruner and Ch. Zraket Eds. For counterarguments, see R. For other cases and theory, see Klaus Knorr and Patrick M. Morgan Eds. Lebow finds significant number of historical cases in which a state's commitment was challenged by another on the assumption that the first state would yield, an assumption which flew in the face of a great deal of information to the contrary.
Gareev, M. Kokoshin and V. Martin's Press, , and M. Kir'ian Ed. Blank and R. Weitz, Eds. Army War College, July , pp. See also: N. He is not responsible for its application here.
Cimbala and S. Waldman, Eds. Blank, Threats to Russian Security , op. Dee, , pp.
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For comparative perspective, see J. Blank, Ed. Army War College, November , pp. Army War College, June , pp. See D. Se also: A. Cohen and R. Army War College, June , and R. Army War College, June Stephen J. A humanities journal specialised in armed forces and military structures in post-Soviet societies. Health insurance. Money Deals. The Independent Books. Voucher Codes. Just Eat. National Trust. Premium Articles. Subscription offers. Subscription sign in.
Read latest edition. UK Edition. US Edition. Log in using your social network account. Please enter a valid password. Keep me logged in. Try Independent Premium free for 1 month See the options. Voices Vladimir Putin is positioning himself as the main player in the Middle East It would be Russia who does the rebuilding of Syria after the war and Saudi Arabia who paid for it. Shape Created with Sketch.
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Foreign relations of the Soviet Union
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