Military Review

Syria: kontrutnelnaya fight

The tunnels dug in soft sandstone, like any other underground structures, we recall at least the underground areas under the stadium in Mosul and Raqqah, where the militants' equipment was located, are used exclusively by terrorist groups. The number of tunnels is incalculable: being an extensive network of underground utilities, they continuously grow with new branches and passages, which are painstakingly penetrated by the militants.

The tunnels are used by militants to move between combat areas, to communicate with each other, to deliver weapons, equipment, workshops and workshops for the manufacture of improvised means of destruction, as well as mainly to capture or destroy positions, command posts of government troops, important government buildings.

Typically, tunnel widths range from 70 cm to 1,2 meters; height - from 1,5 to 2 meters; length - from 250 meters to 2,5 km. Many of the tunnels are equipped with communications, video surveillance, air supply system, lighting.

Syria: kontrutnelnaya fight
CCTV equipment in the tunnels
Air supply to the tunnel (through pipes with the help of the HLF installed on the surface)
Lighting equipment in the tunnels

Remote control explosive devices:

- anti-tank mine, installed in the factory;
- a mine mounted in a tunnel for destruction tanks;

- anti-tank mine installed on the road;

- anti-personnel landmine installed in the factory;

- anti-personnel landmine, installed on the destroyed roof of the building;

- anti-personnel landmine installed in the couch;

- no inscription.

Usually, tunnel fragments and the removal of rock are carried out by militants under the cover of panels stretched between houses or structures sprinkled with sandy or concrete dust on top, almost indistinguishable from the surrounding landscape. Intelligence, including from air reconnaissance vehicles, cannot detect tunnels. Therefore, the search, detection and destruction of tunnels (or their stripping and further use in the interests of government forces) is a very important task in the Syrian conflict.

Search and detection of tunnels is carried out mainly in two ways:

- out of touch with the enemy - by the search groups from the 398 fortification department of the engineering troops of the armed forces of the SAR using georadars;
- units engaged in blocking the areas of concentration of illegal armed groups with the help of instruments of interception of Syrian production, as well as undercover intelligence.

The main technical tools used are the GC-2 georadars used in the Russian Armed Forces, and German-made eXp 5000 anomaly detectors, however, more simple tools designed in the form of stethoscopes and even conventional hearing aids are used. However, the main number of tunnels was opened precisely with the help of georadars, which allow detecting approximately from 15 to 20 tunnels per month.
Search for tunnels using GPR
Search tunnels using the GCE-2
Indications when analyzing data of the eXp 5000 GPR
Indications on the control unit of the GCE OK-2

After the discovery of the tunnel, the decision is made and implemented either to destroy it or to use it in the interests of the government forces. In most cases, the tunnels are destroyed using counterparts and undermining with good old thermobaric ammunition, but in some cases the movement of fighters through them is blocked by a fragment of counter-tunnel ditches to a depth of 18 meters.

In the event that a tunnel or entrance to it is discovered in an territory controlled by an illegal armed formation, a bombing strike is carried out on it aviation or mining is carried out (including remote mining) with the simultaneous organization of observation.

Obviously, it was precisely the presence of a large number of tunnels that caused the continued resistance of terrorist groups in Eastern Gute and in the suburbs of Damascus, despite the complete ground superiority of the government forces. Work on underground communications is a very lengthy and time-consuming process that cannot be put into the framework of urgent planning of hostilities and operations, which means that it will continue after the establishment of full control of government forces over ground areas.
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  1. dSK
    dSK 25 January 2018 06: 47
    Kurds say they shot down a Turkish aircraft. According to media reports, the aircraft crashed in Afrin near the village of Shekhurze. Responsibility for the attack on the plane took on the fighters of the Kurdish "National Self-Defense Forces." (Channel "Tsargrad" 22: 49,24.01.18)
  2. aszzz888
    aszzz888 25 January 2018 07: 15
    Tunnels are one of the features of the war in Syria. I believe that the Syrian soldiers have experience in finding them and the final result.
  3. XII Legion
    XII Legion 25 January 2018 07: 30
    Recall the mine-underground war
  4. Des10
    Des10 25 January 2018 11: 41
    Become concise but pleasantly informative.
    I, as a techie, but a military pensioner, are interested in another question - to open such passages, tunnels and rooms - manually? Fighters?
    "The number of tunnels is not calculable: being an extensive network of underground utilities, they are continuously growing with new branches and passages, which the militants have been carefully breaking through."
    Nevertheless, it seems that they have competent engineering support in the form of designers, civil engineers, workers (slaves), the supply and cover service is the industry as a result.
    Militants themselves will not even dig a trench.
    1. miner
      miner 29 January 2018 17: 38
      In one of the videos, I saw how the militants dig tunnels using a conventional hammer drill, in jackhammer mode. The soil is soft but firm. The tunnels are without fasteners. If they were installed, the construction would become more complicated several times. I doubt that in Russia there are places where you can build the same.
      Engineering support - it seems to me that there is enough school geometry course and the presence of a laser level.
  5. nivander
    nivander 25 January 2018 12: 47
    Incidentally, in Syria, the book "The device of underground structures and communications in the conditions of superiority of the enemy, taking into account the experience of the struggle of the heroic Korean and Vietnamese peoples against the Imperialist invaders" is in use and often reprinted. USSR Ministry of Defense 1977. Well and of course "Methods of combating the underground structures of the IEE based on the experience of the USSR's International Aid DRA" ed.MO USSR 1990
  6. Rostislav
    Rostislav 25 January 2018 19: 42
    Work on underground communications is a very long and laborious process, which cannot be placed within the framework of urgent planning of military operations and operations, which means that it will continue after the establishment of full control of government forces over land territories.

    Who would doubt that. Just remember how long after the war Bandera caches cleaned out.
  7. Vladimir 5
    Vladimir 5 25 January 2018 22: 29
    Perhaps drilling in tunnels and pumping thermobaric mixture, CO gas and other surprises.
  8. rumatam
    rumatam 9 February 2018 15: 33
    let tunnel rats create.