Military Review

Technology fights in modern war

Technology fights in modern warSenator Viktor BONDAREV, Chairman of the Federation Council Committee on Defense and Security, a combat general, Hero of Russia, Honored Military Pilot of the Russian Federation, met Alexander Sharkovsky, Deputy Editor-in-Chief of the Independent Military Review weekly, and answered a number of questions regarding modern military practice and theory.

- Victor Nikolaevich, tell us about your view on innovations in using strategic and long-term aviation in modern wars. Is it possible to continue the use of "strategists" in the Syrian war? Is strategic and long-range aviation obsolete as a means of nuclear delivery weapons airborne?

- The war in Syria is actually over. I think it is now possible to talk about it in the past tense.

Strategic aviation will not become obsolete in the foreseeable future. And above all, because the range of goals and objectives of its use, as well as the range of its capabilities is very wide. Bombers of this class with high accuracy hit both stationary and moving ground objects on a large radius. And they achieve this effect by using the most conventional non-nuclear weapons: both bomb and missile. They require minimal fighter cover. They are maneuverable, easily escape from the means of destruction of the enemy's air defense system, from the means of destruction of the enemy's combat aircraft. They have the most up-to-date electronics capable of recognizing the means of enemy air defense systems and avoiding them.

But, of course, the main advantage of strategic aviation is the ability to strike with nuclear ammunition.

Together with intercontinental ballistic missiles and nuclear missile submarines, strike aircraft, "strategists" constitute the nuclear triad of our Armed Forces. That is, they ensure the security of Russia in the modern world, restrain the aggression of a potential adversary.

Strategic aviation is an elite type of videoconferencing, which will be improved, developed further, because the country's leadership and the Ministry of Defense decided to resume production of the Tu-160M.

- How do you see the future of long-range and strategic aviation (if there is one), will it turn into something resembling space shuttles?

- The future of long-range and strategic aviation seems to me bright and promising. We have the development, production and commissioning of a promising long-range aviation complex (PAK DA), which in the future will replace both Tu-22Mz and Tu-95MS. However, with this project, we are already focusing on 25 – 30-s. The modernization potential of these “Tu” is huge, they are still flying. Well, while the “white swans” are planned to be exploited further, they will fly in 15 – 20 years. Although in the future, PAK DA will replace them too. Universal will be a machine with a wide range of functions. Now the research work on the project has been almost completed, we have come close to making the first prototype. And the beginning of the delivery of these new aircraft to the armed forces is scheduled for 2025 – 2028 years after the tests.

The parallel with the space shuttles seems to me incorrect. The main task of the “strategist” is the carrier, everything else must be solved by a rocket.

- What is new in tactics and operational art for the VKS gave the Syrian war?

- Do you know that the Syrian campaign has become the largest Russian military campaign in recent years? Last time we fought in 2008, when the Georgian-Ossetian conflict broke out. And before that - two Chechen wars, that is, these wars have already gone into the last century.

In the 21st century, war is a fundamentally new phenomenon, both in essence, and in logistics, and in economics, and in all other meanings. This is a high tech war. Given the kind of breakthrough science has made, the art of war is also transforming. On the one hand, it becomes more complicated: that is, more complex combat schemes, more sophisticated and sophisticated weapons and military equipment (IWT) become available to the armed forces. On the other hand, it is simplified: in the sense that, thanks to high technology, a certain result is now achieved with less combat and labor costs than before.

Now the main hostilities take place in the air, which means that the most serious burden falls on the VKS. Accordingly, it becomes necessary to win air superiority first. It was then when we succeeded, for example in Syria, to make this domination lasting, the course of further events was predetermined, and the defeat of the terrorists was only a matter of time. In general, the percentage of participation of the VKS in the structure of the troops involved in standard military operations is growing. And with the further development and widespread introduction of high-precision weapons, military operations in the future in general may possibly take place without a land component.

In general, high-precision weapons (WTO) in many ways changed the tactics, operational actions, strategy and nature of the war of a new generation, gave it a number of distinctive features in comparison with the wars of the past.

Firstly, the use of the WTO reduces the time of combat operations. We have cleared Syria of terrorists in just over two years. But by September 2015 they filled up more than 70% of the country!

Secondly, the high accuracy of shooting increases the striking force of the projectile, which means it saves on their number (especially if the projectile power increases simultaneously with accuracy). That is, the war, of course, is becoming more expensive due to financially intensive technologies, but it is getting cheaper by increasing the effectiveness of the use of weapons.

Thirdly, thanks to the WTO, the depth of the enemy’s fire engagement is increasing, which means that the groupings of his troops are forced into combat operations at a greater depth of operational formation. This greatly depletes the enemy.

Finally, fourth, the WTO determines the evolution of hostilities: from direct front-line contact, the troops moved on to the method of delivering long-range strikes, remote actions began to prevail confidently over melee combat. Due to this, fire strikes and combat operations have moved from a “continuous” to a “pinpoint” character.

In the Syrian war, the tendency to massive strikes and attacks strengthened. Let me remind you that thanks to such actions, Palmyra and Deir ez-Zor were liberated.

Further. An important component of modern warfare (and Syria has shown this) is high-tech intelligence. It includes both electronic warfare and space satellites. Our unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) in Syria have shown themselves very well. The development of reconnaissance assets not only greatly simplified the search for targets for strikes, but also made it possible to effectively deal with various enemy methods used to disable our control and communication systems. The high techs used by the scouts made it possible to increase the speed of adjustment of military aviation to deliver accurate strikes against targets, taking into account the actions of the enemy. After all, it is possible in real-time to monitor the slightest changes in the situation, immediately respond to them.

The most important help to ensure success in modern war is the capture of urbanized areas. Accordingly, the city becomes the battlefield of the city. But since it is often very difficult to deploy ground armored vehicles there because of its low efficiency in the city due to vulnerability, the first violin in the combat "orchestra" again goes to the VKS.

The Syrian war is a war in a foreign land. Plus, there was the fact that we did not fight alone, but in close cooperation with the ground forces of the army of Bashar al-Assad, who know the terrain like the back of their fingers.

City conditions impose severe restrictions on the process of warfare. After all, the main task is not to hit civilians, schools, hospitals, mosques. In no case citizens should not have suffered with our air strikes. And this rule was strictly observed by Russian pilots in Syria. And the militants often used people as human shields. We tried to strike less, solve more issues peacefully, providing corridors for the militants to leave (as was the case in Aleppo and Palmyra).

An important point - the objects of air strikes Russian VKS. We tried as much as possible to eliminate the infrastructure of the militants and cut off their channels for feeding weapons, money and food. Human resources are human resources. Of course, they are important. But if the enemy has blocked the oil, energy, financial "oxygen", if they run out of ammunition, then his defeat will go several times faster. And the volume of destroyed at one time the livelihood of bandits will increase significantly. When it is possible to destroy the economy with strategic means, industrial, military facilities of the enemy, his army itself comes to defeat. I can not say that this is an innovation. In the course of previous wars, it has already been practiced. However, the scale of attention to the elimination of vital infrastructure has increased: before the emphasis was placed on manpower.

I want to note that the war in Syria has cost us minimal losses of personnel and aircraft. Of course, every loss is a huge tragedy. Maximum preservation of the lives of our servicemen and weapons and military equipment became possible thanks to the combat training of pilots, engineers, technicians, officers, personnel of the air defense forces, UAV operators and many, many other specialists who participated in the operation, advanced and very high-quality Russian weapons and military equipment informational support of the entire campaign.

- How will military aviation develop in the near future, taking into account the experience gained in Syria, emphasis will be placed on the number or quality of aircraft, what can we expect in training of personnel?

- The experience of not only the Syrian, but also all wars shows that quality is always a priority over quantity. Especially with regard to the air sphere.

Our VKS showed themselves, not afraid of the word, brilliantly. This high characteristic applies to the pilots, and aircraft, and to the weapons that they carried. Therefore, fundamentally something to change it at the end of the Syrian operation should not be. It is necessary to continue to develop and improve our military aviation industry, as well as continue to prepare the flight personnel using methods that have proven themselves in action. It is important to conduct this work synchronously in order to avoid a technical or personnel gap. For example, so that it did not happen that for the most up-to-date aircraft of the new generation, we didn’t have qualified pilots who could operate them effectively.

And those particular shortcomings, for example, technical properties, which were discovered at the beginning of hostilities, were eliminated very quickly by our design engineers.

- In what form will the development of attack aircraft take place? What should be the new "attack aircraft"? There is an opinion that assault aircraft need to be fully robotized (so that their UAVs are the basis)?

- Of course, if you operate with precisely such categorical phrases, it sounds pretty fantastic. But on the other hand, after analyzing the pace of automating many of the most complex functions, it can be concluded that total robotization of attack aircraft is even possible. Once the pilots themselves took aim, directed the projectile, and now all this is done by an automated system.

I think the time will come, and artificial intelligence from the realm of fantasy will move to the world of real combat processes. Robots will be able to go to the avant-garde of our aviation, including assault. The use of attack robots in a group with centralized control from the ground, which will be carried out by one person, is not excluded. Imagine how much it will save both material, and financial, and, most importantly, human resources?

By the way, just recently the general designer of the United Aircraft Building Corporation Sergey Korotkov said that the main task in this area is not the creation of a specific drone, but the construction of an unmanned aircraft system as a whole.

Let me remind you that we are pioneers in the development and launch of unmanned aerial vehicles. We were the first in the world to land the Buran rocket-orbiting ship in automatic mode and without crew on board, and this happened in the distant 1988 year.

True, the introduction of artificial intelligence in certain areas is a very subtle, delicate moment, the error in which can threaten with catastrophe. Still, an intelligent, but soulless machine will not fully trust the operation. Trust, but verify, as they say. Control must be thorough. After all, the program can fail, it can be hacked by the enemy, and then the mind of the machine will turn against its operators. Therefore, the functions of management and decision-making will still remain for the intellect natural, not artificial, that is, for man. And we will provide the robots with action in their entirety under their control.

- What are the reasons for your departure from military service?

- This is the decision of the leadership, and I am a military man. Being the commander-in-chief of the Russian Aerospace Forces, I did what I had to do. By the way, the decision to leave military service on my part did not meet any obstacles. Rotations everywhere should be. I consider that I have fulfilled my military duty to the Armed Forces of Russia, I performed it with dignity, I was an effective commander. Now is a new page of my life.

- Your opinion as a military practitioner and theorist is interesting - is there a real threat of war with the United States (NATO)?

- The threat of anything cannot be ruled out. Theoretically, a meteorite could fall on us and wipe out all life from the face of the earth, and turn the Earth itself into a set of chemical elements. A long-promised apocalypse can happen. Why guess?

The military-technical resources of our countries are very strong, while being almost equal, but with some Russian advantage. The United States really appreciates this, whatever they are broadcasting to a global audience. They have something to lose. The war with Russia does not meet the economic or geopolitical interests of the Americans.

In general, the United States does not need a world war, a “big” war, especially one in which they would not be an international “arbitrator”, “peacemaker” (read: sponsor), but a party to the conflict. They have enough pinpoint regional conflicts or civil wars on which they can earn: sell weapons and military equipment, control oil flows, and therefore oil prices, control the labor market and cheap labor.

And even more so, the United States will not be able to withstand nuclear power. Please note: no matter how much they threaten the DPRK, they do not dare to start a hot phase of the struggle. Moreover, North Korea has significantly less powerful nuclear capital than we do. The United States is much to fight with weaker opponents: Libya, Syria, Iraq. And only economic and information war can be waged with us.

- How, in your opinion, will relations develop with the current CSTO partners in the next two to three decades?

- The CSTO is an authoritative, well-established international union that provides security in the post-Soviet space. The territory of the CIS is a potentially vulnerable macro-region. After all, here, some 27 years ago, separatist sentiments could have matured into such a cardinal result as the withdrawal of entire republics from the USSR. Therefore, it is very important to strengthen our ties with our closest neighbors, in the past, compatriots.

There is a lot of instability in the world today. Foci of tension often flare up in the border areas. We are building a line of defense with these threats in mind.

We have reliable relations with all members of the CSTO: with Belarus, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan. They recognize the central role of Russia in this alliance, our military might and political power. And when, in addition to the separatist world, the terrorist threat also increased, these countries rallied more closely around the Russian core. We have a regional grouping of troops of Russia and Belarus, we successfully conduct joint exercises.

We sell the CSTO countries the latest weapons, high-quality military equipment. We teach military personnel for their national armies. It is possible that in the future the organization can be replenished with other participants.
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  1. Same lech
    Same lech 24 December 2017 06: 18
    - The war in Syria is actually over. I think it is now possible to talk about it in the past tense.

    Even so ... what but in my opinion not so ... until the issue of a political settlement of Syrian society has been resolved, the war is far from over.

    Jaish al-Izza militants launched artillery strikes at a Russian base south of the n. Halfaya in the north of the province of Hama in Syria.

    This was reported by both opposition and government sources. Currently, there is no accurate information about the damage caused, as well as about possible victims and injuries.
    ... information not yet verified.

    The title of the article must be supplemented ...
    In modern warfare, technology is fought by skilled and motivated fighters.
    Without them, all sorts of technologies are worth little.
    1. Vard
      Vard 24 December 2017 06: 56
      That's right ... No matter how cool the car would be ... Ultimately, everything is determined by the gasket between the steering wheel and the seat ..
      1. bandabas
        bandabas 24 December 2017 09: 32
        New Year's Eve. And then the election. A .. Also, the praise. And the 2018 World Cup. Full soup set. And then- "Yes! Yes! A frog! And another earthworm!" We hear you, Kaa.
        1. Chertt
          Chertt 24 December 2017 10: 33
          What's happening?. Victor BONDAREV bought in.? Not a day goes by without being "licked", in the most indecent way
      2. To be or not to be
        To be or not to be 24 December 2017 10: 49
        "Technology is fighting in modern warfare .."
        In battle .. battle. technology operations help to win the victory .. "In any war," said V. I. Lenin, "victory is ultimately determined by the state of mind of the masses who shed their blood on the battlefield."
        In war, victory is determined by many system factors. From the type of war .. the determination of leadership and the spirit of the people .. to the presence of a strong rear ... mob reserves ..
  2. rotmistr60
    rotmistr60 24 December 2017 07: 31
    Our VKS in Syria really showed what they are capable of and that Russian military aviation can give odds to someone. Regarding the "end of the war in Syria" I agree with the comment "The same LEKHA", it’s too early to report about it.
  3. jolly deckhand
    jolly deckhand 24 December 2017 08: 10
    "- CSTO is a reputable, well-established international union,"
    I do not agree. From the word SOVSEM. They will not come to our aid.
  4. groks
    groks 24 December 2017 09: 59
    Of course it’s good to have high technology (whatever that means). And motivated fighters too. Who argues.
    What did Syria show? Yes, Allah knows him. ISIS did not counteract aviation in any way. It couldn’t. This is good, of course. But where can such an experience be applied? This is our elite what is preparing at all?
  5. Mikhail3
    Mikhail3 24 December 2017 10: 29
    We won the conflict in Syria, which was artificially projected, according to an old song - "little blood, on foreign territory." The conflict was not projected by us, but by our enemies. ISIS didn’t have air defenses, the Americans weren’t crazy yet to arm people with limited control. We have shown that gangs of militants are not afraid of us.
    That is, we played with the United States. Seth is after us. The dead fighters lost, of course, but they then entered the game as pawns voluntarily. The Syrians are grateful to us, because in the game we did not forget them and covered them as we could. But all this is not a “modern war” at all. It’s just training and that’s it.
    Our opponent will fight fundamentally differently when he decides to strike for destruction. However, he has already seriously advanced in our destruction, clearly winning in the space of the mind. Perhaps there will never be a “hot” war. Our people practically do not listen to songs in Russian and do not sing them. This is a defeat that cannot be compared with a thousand Syrian victories. The fact that our commanders do not understand this is a tragedy. We, as usual, are not ready for the enemy’s strike and do not see him.
    I’m only afraid that this time there will be no one to repel the blow. For thousands of years we have risen after terrible blows and snatched victory first of all because we are Russians. Is it still Russian? Are you sure? Are there still those who rise again? Terrible doubts torment me ...
    1. sevtrash
      sevtrash 24 December 2017 11: 53
      Self-identification is not enough, it is not enough to feel that you belong to a historically great nation. We need a constantly maintained state power due to the rational rule of an adequate system of government. First of all, the basis of everything is economics, and for a country that wants to be great and act in the political arena, the economy should be just as great. If there is no advanced economy, you need to attach yourself to the tail of a great country. There is no third.
      1. Mikhail3
        Mikhail3 24 December 2017 11: 57
        And you think about the question - what is the "advanced economy"? What it is? This, you know, is not so simple ...
        1. sevtrash
          sevtrash 24 December 2017 19: 30
          There are a lot of parameters for this, the main ones seem to be the GDP and PPP GDP. So everything is simple - GDP. Everything else is from him - money for education, basic and applied research, armed forces, etc.
          1. KaPToC
            KaPToC 24 December 2017 23: 52
            Quote: sevtrash
            The main ones seem to be considered as the GDP and PPP GDP.

            They incorrectly believe that production indicators should be watched, how much iron, electricity, and food are produced.
          2. Mikhail3
            Mikhail3 25 December 2017 09: 12
            Where there is a "mass of parameters", the response is not visible. For this, a lot of parameters are needed. The strength of the state depends only partly on the economy (even if this part is quite important). The main power of the state is people, namely, dreams, fantasies and ideas of people. And these intangible, imperceptible, in some ways funny things with their “non-importance” are the main reason for the existence of any state.
            Because the state primarily exists in the minds of men. It is there that it originates, grows stronger, and often weakens and disappears. And then the army, territory, and economy collapse powerlessly. There is no salvation for a state that has left the minds of its former subjects.
            Following in someone’s wake, the most important thing is not to miss the moment when people turn away from this wake.
            1. sevtrash
              sevtrash 25 December 2017 12: 22
              Being determines consciousness. If a person needs to put all his strength into survival, there will be no time for dreams. The economy is primary, it makes no sense to argue here, it is enough to recall the history of civilization. The parameter of the economy said - GDP, the most important, brought one.
              1. antivirus
                antivirus 25 December 2017 13: 19
              2. Mikhail3
                Mikhail3 25 December 2017 16: 31
                That is why I asked you to think about what an advanced economy is. In response, you have issued a set of stamps. Have you noticed? I highly recommend arranging for yourself a serious cleaning of ideas and ideas. Here is what you answered me?
                Quote: sevtrash
                If a person needs to put all his strength into survival

                Ha. Survival? Mercedes old and nothing to refuel? Or do not keep your legs from hunger? Why, most likely the first than the second. And you know that, it’s just that the look of the old Mercedes is terribly scratching the ego, how is it that Lexus is around, the Padjeriki are fresh, and I, like a sucker .... This is another problem. Quite another.
                1. sevtrash
                  sevtrash 25 December 2017 18: 18
                  You do not seem to be friends with the essence of things. Maybe before advising others to brainwash, arrange it yourself? Enter the name of any country on the wiki, open it and see what indicator, first of all, characterizes the state of the economy. Probably very surprised, but this is GDP and PPP GDP.
                  1. Mikhail3
                    Mikhail3 25 December 2017 18: 46
                    No need to get annoyed. And use the wiki less often if you want to rule over your mind and therefore over the reality available to you. When you manage to suppress irritation, you will understand why it arose.
                    But it arose because you pressed the familiar button, and for some reason I didn’t jump back. You used the “we are all on the brink of survival” psycho stamp, and you habitually expected me to go along the deep track of the other vaccinated psycho stamps. But I did not go. It hurts, right?
                    I apologize, but the mind does not accept shackles and despises traps if it is the mind, not a dump of finished pieces. If you are still a person, and not a hopelessly stamped piece of someone else's car - think! Only reason is truly free!
                    If propaganda crushes you from morning till night, you are a beggar, a beggar, A POVERTY !! so this is not a reason to listen to her, you know. What, did the mouse hang in the fridge? Muscles refuse hunger? Is it hard to stand? Or is the matter different? In a completely different way ...
                    1. sevtrash
                      sevtrash 26 December 2017 15: 30
                      Quote: Mikhail3
                      If propaganda crushes you from morning till night, you are a beggar, a beggar, A POVERTY !! so this is not a reason to listen to her, you know. What, did the mouse hang in the fridge? Muscles refuse hunger? Is it hard to stand? Or is the matter different? In a completely different way ...

                      Quite severely your situation. Well, in fact, have something to say? Let me remind you, GDP and GDP with PPP as the main indicators of the country's economic development. Or your "power over your mind" wassat labeled GDP as "vaccinated with psychostrain"? Ooh ... And there is no this power of fetters and traps ... He is free ... And he is a beggar, a beggar, a beggar !!! And also this mouse ... Oooo ... And how to stand, how difficult it is ...
                      1. Mikhail3
                        Mikhail3 26 December 2017 17: 56
                        You are interested in a “victory” in a dispute. Alas. In vain I got involved.
    2. gridasov
      gridasov 27 December 2017 00: 35
      And you do not think that the Americans simply provoked the Russians by the war in Syria. At the same time, on a foreign land, they showed the ability of the Russians to mobilize and use their armed forces of the 2017 model with the wrong hands. I think that it was worth the money they invested in this war to find out closer and deeper than the enemy. And in this regard, I think. that Russia has lost a lot. Why? Because in any war, and especially when the enemy is equal, the winner is the one who has and knows how to correctly use the reserve, which can always outweigh the scales in his favor. And I suppose. that the Americans, if they don’t have what can defeat the enemy, then after the war in Syria they will definitely know which way to develop their weapons. However, everything is mutual. And Russia is again drawn into the active phase of the arms technology race. Therefore, the Americans should pay tribute to the fact that corporations are participating in the war and for them it is a profitable company, and Russia is fighting the whole country. and for her it’s all much more “complicated."
      1. Baikal
        Baikal 29 December 2017 11: 02
        My boobs, Gridastov, an astral engineer, didn’t my native Lviv region receive a handout from the Pindos Embassy and gave out a salary for July? laughing
        Gentlemen, be careful! The delirious man went hunting! laughing
  6. iouris
    iouris 24 December 2017 14: 08
    The first thing technology does. Well, girls? And then the girls. Reasonable.
    The nature of the war is "modern - non-modern." This is generally a new word in theory.
    But the question of the causes of the Tu-154 crash was not raised at all.
  7. Curious
    Curious 24 December 2017 15: 43
    "The war in Syria is actually over. I think we can talk about it now in the past tense."
    I wonder at what level of audience are these “messages” designed for?
    The war in Syria is a struggle for control of the European energy market.
    Now a third of the energy consumed by the EU countries comes from Russia, and most of Central and Southeast Europe uses only Russian gas, while there simply is no other.
    At least half of the European hydrocarbon market is at stake. Therefore, victory in Syria can only be considered a guarantee that Qatari gas and Saudi oil will not go to Europe through the territory of Syria. And no one will give such a guarantee at present. Therefore, talk of victories in Syria and the end of the war is an air shock for known purposes.
    1. antivirus
      antivirus 24 December 2017 18: 30
      the whole Arab East at gunpoint.
      no one will ever know: how and who will download from Libya and where
      what about Egypt? + Israel?
      and through the Sahara, including from Nigeria? through Algeria-Spain or through Libya-Italy, maybe to Greece and the Balkans.
      it's even without question marks
      writing on the water with a pitchfork.
      managed to defend their positions in the PP countries. this is work for China - there to drive out of the PP
      Africa who gets ????
      1. iouris
        iouris 25 December 2017 11: 19
        Quote: antivirus
        Africa who gets ????

        I would have your problems.
        1. antivirus
          antivirus 25 December 2017 12: 18
          in yellow, hot Africa you can’t see ... "
          Are you purely specifically responsible for the fin flow of 10 billion dollars per year?
          or for training - coaching bankers from the second (scary to say - the first) hundreds of Forbes-RF
          Oh, yes!
          nothing is predetermined.
          and everything hangs in the balance-- easy to grab, hard to hold for decades and pump loot
  8. zyzx
    zyzx 26 December 2017 10: 00
    Technology fights in modern war
    Resume 17 moments, everything will be explained there.