... states exist for the sake of war;
they are the embodiment of readiness for war.
Oswald Spengler "Prussianism and Socialism"
they are the embodiment of readiness for war.
Oswald Spengler "Prussianism and Socialism"
Foreword February 25, 2022
This article was written a few days before the start of the attack on Ukraine, but it was approved too late and it did not have time to go out. However, the author decided to publish it nevertheless - but with comments from February 25, when the course of events became approximately clear.
It's quite interesting to trace where and how you "hit the mark", and where you "missed". In general, the reader is offered a "pre-war" text, but with "military" comments already. This way you can better see what was clear before the start of the conflict, and what was wrong. Detractors will even be able to gloat, if possible.
The operation that Russia undertook stunned everyone, firstly, by the scale of the tasks assigned, and secondly, by the speed with which the Russian troops initially developed success.
Two days later, telegram channels are full of photos from the battlefields and with broken equipment - alas, far from being only Ukrainian. And the bodies of soldiers left on the battlefield - also not only Ukrainian.
Crisis points have been identified - in the middle of February 25, this is Kharkov, where the army cannot yet overcome the resistance of the Ukrainian troops and where we have the biggest losses, and until the middle of the 25th - the Gostomel airfield, where Russian troops landed about 30 hours ago - 200 people either from the MTR, or from the intelligence of the Airborne Forces. It was in this operation that two "Alligators" were lost - or, one helicopter and some other aircraft from which it was possible to eject. The Ukrainians claimed three times that the airfield was taken, and the landing force was either destroyed, or knocked out and fled through the forests and were forced to refute their words three times. Well, they've refuted it.
Our unofficial channels claimed that the guys were either holding on or had already been saved.
The Ministry of Defense was silent, as if there was no landing, a breakthrough to the target right under the fire of MANPADS, landing right in front of the positions of the Ukrainians and kicking them out from there under the cover of "turntables". And only in the middle of the 25th, when our Tanks broke through to the airfield, the Department of Information and Mass Communications finally told about them.
And if the Ukrainians succeeded, then what, DIMK MO continued to pretend that nothing had happened?
Now there are already sluggish battles in Kyiv itself, but the resistance of the Armed Forces of Ukraine is slowly growing, and our losses are also growing. Kharkov is still a problem and it is completely incomprehensible what awaits us in Dnepropetrovsk and around - our troops are not yet in the very center of Ukraine. More and more troops are being introduced into the country, but the APU still has numerical superiority.
But the analysis of what happened is better to do later.
The entire text below is an article written a day before the war, and timed to coincide with the recognition of the DPR and LPR, but with late comments.
Russia has taken a step that many have been waiting for from it for many years, and many were afraid, including inside the country. In a sense, this is the crossing of the Rubicon - the political situation now is not at all the same as in 2008, when South Ossetia and Abkhazia were recognized, but in any case it happened - President of the Russian Federation V. Putin announced the recognition of the independence of the Donbass republics. Apparently, at an extraordinary meeting of the Federation Council, everything will be brought to an end.
Is it good for Russia? The question is inappropriate, there are millions of our compatriots, with considerable sacrifice, fighting for their right to be themselves. It simply cannot be discussed. Yes, and questions like “is it not too late” or “is it not worth it to do it right away” are now of strictly theoretical interest. In any case, it's all over.
But what now takes on real importance is how ready Russia is for the consequences, primarily from a military point of view.
The modern Ukrainian identity, in the form in which it was introduced (and implemented) by the post-Maidan Ukrainian authorities, is built on foundations, some of which are directly related to us, moreover, without connection with Crimea or Donbass. Let's briefly list them.
"Ukraine is not Russia." This was even included in the title of a book by one of the former presidents of Ukraine L. Kuchma. That is, a Ukrainian exists precisely as a Ukrainian, largely because he is not Russian, and Ukraine exists precisely as "not Russia." If there were no Russians and Russia, then the Ukrainian identity in its current form would also not exist, and it would have to be “recreated”. Historical analogies that someone can try to draw are inappropriate here, since we are talking about a new identity that did not previously exist in this form, although it has common features with the previous one.
Cultural and civilizational superiority of Ukrainians over Russians.
It sounds like an idiotic joke - but nevertheless, a large part of the Ukrainian population believes in it.
The following follows from this point.
Ukraine is an outpost of European civilization, opposing the Asian barbarism of Russia.
Comments are not needed here.
The loss of Crimea and prolonged hostilities in the Donbass gave rise to another “pillar”.
Ukraine must repel “Russian aggression”, on the one hand, in order to maintain its cultural and civilizational superiority, on the other hand, because it has it: "stupid katsapnya" not only should not win, she also cannot do it, since she is an "Asian rabble", incapable of anything, unlike Europeans. This sounds simply mockingly stupid for a normal person, especially in the light of real (not fictional) Ukrainian "achievements" of their own, but nevertheless they believe in it. Perhaps the point is that they compare not their achievements with Russian ones, but Western ones in general, since Ukraine is supposedly also the “West”, and the achievements of the West are also the achievements of Ukraine, at least, of the civilization to which Ukraine belongs. This is also part of their new identity.
The first specific feature gives rise to antagonism - Ukrainians cannot be with Muscovites, since they are “not Muscovites”, the opposite phenomenon.
The remaining features create the most powerful militant chauvinism, the basis of which is a fictitious superiority over Russia and the Russians and, attention, an urgent need to prove the existence of this superiority in practice.
Further, a quote from an old Articlesdescribing the psychological consequences of such moods:
Superiority requires sometimes pointing out to others their status. The most intelligible method to point someone in his place is humiliation, and the highest form of humiliation is what? This is murder...
But what if someone who, in your opinion, is inferior to you, but behaves like an equal, and you cannot put him in his place at once, how will you feel towards him?
But what if someone who, in your opinion, is inferior to you, but behaves like an equal, and you cannot put him in his place at once, how will you feel towards him?
The latter is the main problem. The fact is that such sentiments are very strong. Having suffered a defeat in Russia in 1812, the French, who had a similar attitude towards the Russians, were forced to invent a lot of theories justifying the defeat of white people inflicted on them by "these savages." Basically, everything here, as we remember, revolved around Russian frosts.
A little later, to the same agonizing question “why?” in their memoirs, with pain in every line, the generals of the defeated Wehrmacht tried to answer. Unwilling to accept the reality that they were defeated by people who they seriously considered a faceless biomass, they could not answer their question.
But all these people were defeated in a hard struggle. Unable to recognize the inaccuracy and perniciousness of their ideas of their national superiority over us, they nevertheless were broken emotionally and psychologically. Without admitting that they were defeated by people, they could not deny that they were defeated after all.
A quick Russian security operation in the Donbas would put the “nationally oriented” Ukrainians in a situation where they have defeat but no defeat. There is no emotional breakdown, no horror of loss, no memories of how one survived among a pile of charred corpses of his friends - "brothers". All these medical procedures will become the lot of the absolute minority of those who are now going to go and press the “cotton wool” “to the nail”.
That is, the chauvinistic militaristic frenzy, in which part of Ukrainian society is now, will not disappear with the withdrawal of Donbass from the blow, an understanding of what a war with the Russian Federation can be for each of these “Svidomo” Ukrainians, these people will not arise.
Now we add here the Bandera ethics, for example, that it is acceptable for the "Svidomo" to destroy the civilian population, we add here the low level of intelligence of this fraternity: on the entire Maidan, among the thousands of activists, there was not a single person who could understand the text of the document on association with the EU, rejected at the last moment by V. Yanukovych. As a result, people thought that they "do not want to be allowed into the EU." This is a very striking characteristic of this contingent. From here we get the final conclusion - they will not be able to understand or accept the new reality, and their chauvinistic frenzy will push them to, firstly, not to give up, and secondly, to take revenge.
And this revenge can be a serious challenge.
Comment from February 25: at the moment, the will of the Armed Forces of Ukraine to resist is not even close, the number of their attacks on our rear columns is growing. Video from telegram channels filmed by residents of Ukraine shows that, with the exception of Kharkiv, where friendly moods are quite common, although there are reverse examples, in other regions of Ukraine, to put it mildly, we are not welcome. This applies to Russian-speaking residents of Ukraine and not only.
Provocations and terror
First, we run the risk of facing terror.
We can recall, for example, the murder of rebel leaders immediately after the signing of the Minsk agreements, and, characteristically, the murder of one of the signatories of these agreements, A. Zakharchenko. We can recall the actions of Ukrainian saboteurs on the territory of the Russian Federation, and not only in the Crimea.
Here, very serious efforts will be required from the FSB. Moreover, they will be required in conditions when the “office” will be overloaded with already existing anti-terror tasks and additional tasks for cleaning the Donbass from Kyiv agents.
Secondly, this terror may not necessarily be on earth.
Let's remember that we completely lack mine defense, and the British advised the Ukrainians to carry out covert laying of mines from civilian watercraft in 2014, during the Crimean events.
Moreover, what is important, Ukraine can buy mines or even get them for free from the West within a matter of days. And how much time do we need to repair and modernize old minesweepers?
We cannot rule out simply provocations by the Ukrainian Navy, and, unlike the Ukrainian boatmen who meekly went to the slaughter under the Kerch bridge, these can be really dangerous armed provocations.
The author has written more than once about the threat posed by the Ukrainian Navy, for example, the latest material “Ukrainian saboteurs will have to be drowned on the distant approaches to the shores of Russia” or earlier article “Dangerous as cadaveric poison. A little about the Ukrainian Navy", where the issues of the Ukrainian threat at sea are disclosed in detail.
We will have to add to these materials the fact that our ships, including those in the Black Sea Fleet, have never reflected a dense, small-scale, missile salvo from 4–8 low-altitude anti-ship missiles. That is, we simply do not know whether our air defense systems will be able to repel such a strike, and not a single target, but we can guess that the task will be very difficult.
The question arises - what will happen in the event of a real Ukrainian missile attack against our ships? For example, what did the Egyptians do with respect to the Eilat destroyer? Will we famously beat off their salvo or will we get shame on the whole world and the lost ship?
Alas, this question is now open.
If we are not talking about missile strikes or laying mines, but about sabotage by combat swimmers, then, alas, there are also problems in our anti-submarine sabotage defense. M. Klimov wrote something about this in an article "To prevent Port Sudan from becoming Port Arthur: base defense". It should be understood that there are other problems in the organization of EITI, in addition to those described. There is no reason to believe that Ukraine cannot exploit these weaknesses and vulnerabilities, especially with the help of allies.
Comment from February 25th: Obviously, with the outbreak of hostilities, the leadership of the Russian troops also regarded the Ukrainian Navy as a serious threat. Therefore, they were almost completely destroyed, and now they do not affect the course of hostilities. In the conditions of the war, this was an absolutely correct decision, on February 24, 2022, only a very narrow-minded person could laugh at the Ukrainian Navy, and it’s good that they were immediately neutralized. At the time of writing the original article, however, nothing was known about the scale of the planned operation.
But let's digress from terror, mines and provocations. Ukraine may well try our troops for strength, and here, instead of counteracting individual provocations, we will have to fight stupidly, albeit in a limited space. And here, too, there are a lot of questions.
Comment from February 25th: Under the limited space here meant the areas around the Donbass, and the Donbass itself. The scale of the actually started war, however, turned out to be completely different.
Everything that is written below should not be misunderstood - the Ukrainian troops in a clash with the RF Armed Forces are doomed in any case. But there is the question of the price of victory, and it cannot be ignored.
We politically cannot afford to deal with this adversary at the cost of the same losses as the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU). Society, apparently, will accept a loss ratio of approximately 1:100 in our favor, but, let's say, a 1:10 alignment will raise questions for the authorities.
And now a few examples of how the Armed Forces of Ukraine today differ from themselves in 2014.
In 2015-2016, the Armed Forces of Ukraine received American AN/TPQ-36 and 37 counter-battery radars. Less than a year after receiving these radars, Ukrainian artillery often returned fire after the third projectile fired by the militia. Then they were knocked out for a long time and knocked out, but the personnel who knew how to work with them were not knocked out, and the Western countries themselves could again covertly set up the stations.
As a result, it will be necessary to work only with self-propelled artillery according to the Western scheme, when at once a large number of guns in different places receive a common target, stop, fire literally two shots each and change position at maximum speed, leaving the retaliatory strike. Or prepare for serious losses. And for such shooting, an appropriate automated artillery control system is needed. Do we have it? And what about the training of crews of self-propelled guns, headquarters?
The Armed Forces of Ukraine have a well-functioning connection between infantrymen and armored vehicles. At the positions - wired encrypted digital communication based on fiber-optic cable lines - neither listen, nor connect, nor detect the fact of work, nor suppress it with interference.
They know how to correct artillery fire with drones and shoot down our UAVs. And they have shown it time and time again. They also have drones, although here they apparently do not fly long. But they can manage to inflict a couple of painful blows on us.
Or such a small, it would seem, example - often photojournalists "snatch out" photos of Ukrainian soldiers who have everything weapon in the hands caught in the frame is equipped with collimators. Here in this video, for example, they are.
A trifle? But the Donbass is a highly urbanized area, in some places there is continuous development, the distances between towns and urban-type settlements are often measured in kilometers. It will not be possible to demolish them with artillery, multiple launch rocket systems and similar weapons - there are civilians there, some of whom might not have been evacuated, and we cannot simply take them and kill them together with the Ukrainian military. This means that motorized riflemen will have to dismount and fight in built-up areas, relying on heavy weapons capable of direct fire (tank and infantry fighting vehicle cannons, heavy machine guns, ZSU), and ... personal weapons.
Let's leave the question of how ready our 19-year-old infantry is for this, although this is also a very important question.
But the fact that aiming from a collimator is more accurate and faster at times is a fact. Let us recall one of the most intense episodes, when the US solved the problem of attracting large infantry forces (mainly marines, note) to street battles - the Iraqi city of Fallujah in 2004 (the second battle for Fallujah).
The city was stormed, during which 54 American Marines were killed in the first, active phase, and 107 people, mostly Americans, died in total of American, British and Iraqi (from the newly formed pro-American army of Iraq) military personnel.
The losses of the rebels were measured in thousands, and a great proportion of them were shot in the head. The Americans even conducted a special investigation to make sure that we were not talking about the execution of prisoners, and found that 4x optical sights each Marines led to the fact that the soldiers massively hit the enemy fighters in the head at any attempt to lean out from behind the wall and look around.
An ordinary soldier of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, trained in shooting from a machine gun, when equipped with a collimator, the results of firing at once improve by 30-40% without any additional factors.
Do we have collimators? Yes, in many parts. But, alas, the fathers-commanders do not want to answer for them, as a result, in order to prevent the fighters from breaking them by mistake and not to account for them later, the fighters go into battle without them. With all the consequences. And no one controls it. Is there such a problem in the units that are now part of the Donbass republics? I would like to be sure that it is not.
Russian soldiers in Crimea, 2014. All have old machines without collimators or optics. Photo: AP/dpa
Or an example with a night vision device. Is there a bracket on the helmets of the RF Armed Forces for its quick installation? Rhetorical question. Ukrainians do not either, but - (see above) we can't be like them, we have to be better than them, and much.
And in general, it would be interesting to know how it is with the provision of troops with night optics and preparation for a night battle, otherwise conscripts returning from service say nothing about this, nothing at all.
Helmet of the US Army, on the forehead a bracket for quick installation of a night vision device. Photo: US Army
Comment from February 25th: The first day of the war caused conflicting assessments. It seemed that the Armed Forces of Ukraine were falling down, but the truly wonderful, complete destruction of their air defense and air force beyond the control of even the Americans was true. We will return to the latter, but today we must admit that the Armed Forces of Ukraine have not been able to realize their potential. And they didn’t have so many radars. By this moment, the Lugansk police were able to capture only one counter-battery radar, the effectiveness of counter-battery fire of the Armed Forces of Ukraine has not shown any miracles yet, although it is apparently not zero, and artillery can operate much more freely than expected. However - an important point - it was not a foregone conclusion. At this moment, the enemy actually played a giveaway with us, not regaining the opportunity that he had previously.
As for the rest... the street fighting is already there. Sumy, Kherson (Antonovka), paratroopers in Gostomel, and at the time of updating this article, there is a heavy battle in Nikolaev, "at the rifle station" judging by the sounds - this has already been encountered, while we were lucky, the enemy, stunned by the attack, which he did not expect, unable to organize effective resistance.
And this is just the beginning - the battles in the Minsk massif of Kyiv and Obolon are already underway, huge Kyiv is ahead, and besides, Mariupol, full of Nazis from Azov and units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, where they have been preparing for street battles for two days. How they prepare for them is a separate question. The question is how ready we are for them.
As for the night optics... Half a day ago, one of the former leaders of the militia in Donetsk, A. Khodakovsky, said that the advance of the troops stops at night "for natural reasons." Alas, the Russians, it seems, too, otherwise the Ukrainians near Kharkov, who were otherwise deprived of "night vision", could notably be beaten this night, having won back the day's delays and losses. But this did not happen, after the night they were finished off for half a day. Now there seems to be progress.
There are actually many such examples. And the last of these are the notorious Javelin anti-tank systems and the NLAW rocket-propelled grenade launcher.
Video about NLAW.
From the latter, you need to stay further than 800 meters - none of the means of protection available to our tanks will help, especially the ridiculous bars over the roof of the tower. This alone should seriously change the tactics of the troops in the offensive, otherwise it will end with apocalyptic blockages of stuffed armor, as during the first assault on Grozny, and the corresponding losses in people.
With Javelins, due to their range, the situation is even worse - here you will have to implement a lot of measures to make their use difficult, smoke screens, infrared blinding of the enemy, diverting armored vehicles to the rearguard of troops advancing on foot, using heavy flamethrower systems to destroy living forces in the attacked positions - and this is all in the field, and in the development everything will again rest against the infantry, sights, the ability to shoot and killer drones, which should be in sufficient numbers. Do they exist? And the rest of the measures are being worked out in the exercises? Or will it be the same as always?
Comment from February 25th: today it became clearly visible that with the anti-tank systems and NLAW, the Ukrainians turned out to be not a horse's fodder, as they say. The Armed Forces of Ukraine have not yet been able to organize an effective anti-tank defense using these means, as a result, our troops do not have the problems described above. In addition, there is reason to believe that a significant part of these funds was destroyed in warehouses during the first strikes. But another problem is brewing - some of the Ukrainian anti-tank systems of all types are spreading over various surviving detachments, special forces and the like, and they begin to attack with them the rear guards and rear columns of our troops. The latter are driving around Ukraine without guards, as if it were their own territory, hence all these videos of broken Grads, Kamaz trucks with howitzers in tow, and so on. What to do about it is still unclear. So far, it is clear that communications must be protected, and that they are not protected.
In general, the Armed Forces of Ukraine are a difficult adversary. And we really should take this enemy seriously, although many of its shortcomings are already obvious.
Comment from February 25th: The potential of the Armed Forces of Ukraine was crippled by two things. The first, for which we must say thanks to our headquarters - strikes on the command structures of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. They seriously disorganized the Ukrainian troops, and made it impossible for them to coordinate resistance - now it is focal, here it is, there it is not.
The second culprit of the Ukrainian problems is the own command of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, which could not use the resources of its troops.
The enemy played a giveaway, this is a very important point, to which we will return more than once.
There are questions about the readiness of the troops to act against a serious and motivated enemy, in principle, without reference to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
News about the armament of the Ground Forces in recent years has been puzzling. For example - "BMP-1AM "Basurmanin": practical modernization".
Without evaluating the name, I would like to ask a question - did you receive any additional BMP armor? The fact that it is security that determines the ability of a combat vehicle to perform a combat mission became clear following the results of the 1973 Arab-Israeli war. But in the USSR, due to the specific decision-making system, few people were worried about this.
In Russia, the situation is different, especially in demographics. And the question is - since the Ministry of Defense has already invested in the modernization of the BMP-1, was it not worth equipping these vehicles with additional armor according to the scheme of the "Afghan" BMP-1D and BMP-2D with enhanced armor? Or normal, not handicraft on-board lattice screens from the Research Institute of Steel? Or both of them?
Yes, they will lose buoyancy, but there are things much more important than buoyancy. Ordinary BMP-1 or BMP-2, by modern standards, can be considered armored with reservations ...
BMP-2M with additional armor protection and lattice screens. In the BMP-1, our soldiers are cheaper or what? However, combat "twos" are not so protected. Photo: Rosoboronexport
Was it not worth it to radically increase the number of smoke grenade launchers on them (we will not dream of a fragmentation projectile fired from such a grenade launcher)?
There are actually many such questions. And together they largely determine the level of losses on the ground.
Comment from February 25th: The war came and our soldiers went into battle on ordinary motorcycle leagues that remember Chechnya. That's all. Well, not only on them, of course, on everything - up to the BRDM-2. Today in the West they joke about the fact that Russia is fighting like in the Second World War. This, of course, is not so, but what our troops went into battle with in Ukraine is not impressive, to say the least. And it's not about the money. We always had BMP-1s, the possibility of re-booking them too, 30-mm cannons and normal sights at least in the old towers could have been put, and it would not have cost some fantastic money, but it turned out quite differently. And the contrast with exemplary video footage from exercises, such as the same Kavkaz-2020, is very sharp. A big (our biggest after the Second World War) war came and we all saw what our troops were equipped with in 13 years of rearmament.
And in the air? Ukraine has an air defense system, and no matter how much we laugh at this country, it is apparently more powerful than that of Iraq in 1991. In any case, Iraq did not have the S-300, at least the first modifications, but Ukraine has it, like the Buks.
How is the situation with stockpiles of high-precision weapons for aviation? How is the situation with anti-radar missiles for strike aircraft? With container jamming stations? With small-sized Kh-59M cruise missiles for tactical strike aviation? Are there sufficient stocks?
After all, it’s simply not possible to fight with Ukraine in the same way as with bandits in Syria - this is not the enemy that can be bombarded with “cast iron” from a safe height. There will be a need for means capable of hitting Ukrainian S-300s and Buks from a long range, and these means will be needed decently. Do they exist?
Again, don't misunderstand. A lot has been done for the army in recent years. But it’s not a fact that everything is possible, and, as the example of collimators shows, it’s not about money, they were and they spent it. But sights in many parts simply do not give out.
Comment from February 25th: Here we must again say thanks to the planners and intelligence. As will be shown below, we do not have enough high-precision weapons. But our forces managed to literally catch a very significant part of the Ukrainian air defense forces on the spot and destroy them in the first hours of the war, before they even deployed. Some people had to be finished off with planes with live pilots - we recall the photo of the Kh-31P anti-radar missile shot down by Ukrainians - this is exactly the weapon that should be used in such circumstances. It should be noted that the fact that she was shot down says a lot about the skill of anti-aircraft gunners and their equipment. This is a very difficult goal.
But basically they crushed the radar successfully.
It is impossible, however, not to note that not everything was suppressed - the "completely destroyed" Ukrainian air defense "spoke" today - below is a photo from the telegram channel "PMC-media"
This is a residential building in Kyiv, on which fragments of a downed Kalibr cruise missile fell. What hit her? Good question, the goal is very difficult.
Nevertheless, one cannot but admit that in the first days of the conflict, the air defense potential of Ukraine was greatly undermined - but first of all by intelligence and planning, and only then by the WTO.
Because we have issues with the WTO.
We look at the photo, taken from the telegram channel "Turned on Z War"
This is the Chuguev airfield. It can be seen that there was no total destruction of aircraft, some airfield buildings were destroyed, including, judging by the smoke, a fuel depot.
The planes were not all destroyed, although they also "flew".
The fragments could not but cut the cars in the parking lot, in addition, there were more than one such hit, but the fact is that not all planes were destroyed, moreover, on February 24, Ukrainian fighter planes flew, just a few, they were shot down. That is, Ukrainian aviation was not completely destroyed at the airfields, the airfields themselves too.
As the most striking example of how well Ukrainian aviation was destroyed, let's cite the fact that Ukrainian Mi-24Ps fired missiles at our landing force in Gostomel. Nobody interfered with them and nobody brought them down.
Why was not all Ukrainian aviation destroyed?
The targets were not hit by aircraft, they were hit by cruise missiles, absolutely from ships, possibly from ground-based launchers of the Iskander OTRK, and possibly (but this is not certain, this is a "naked" guess) from bombers.
In addition, it makes sense to quote one US Marine Corps officer who had the opportunity to observe what the US Armed Forces observed in one of the operations centers (in Yokohama, where everything was also broadcast). Quote:
Watched a bunch of SRBMs fly in the Operations Center. Chat room traffic is.....busy, to say the least. I won't comment on the accuracy of what we're seeing but.....I'm glad Ukraine isn't my AO.
I saw a bunch of flying OTPs in the Operations Center. The ops center messenger traffic is... busy, to say the least. I will not comment on the accuracy of what I saw, but ... I am glad that Ukraine is not in my operational zone
That is, the Iskander complexes were used. Without a doubt, this is a high-precision weapon, but let's also admit that we do not have so many cruise and tactical missiles to plow all Ukrainian airfields with them, so they were not plowed. There were not enough means of destruction.
Why weren't they covered by planes?
Firstly, because of the unwillingness to inflict unnecessary losses on the Ukrainians - clearly, the use of aviation in this operation is subject to the most severe restrictions. Only today there are first signs that they will be removed.
The second reason is that with unguided rockets and free-falling bombs, it was possible to get under the "destroyed" Ukrainian air defense.
And correctable ammunition in the required quantity is simply not available, especially since the battle for Kyiv, for a million-plus city, is ahead, and accurate strikes will be needed precisely there, because we cannot afford significant destruction, we cannot afford losses, and We don’t have time to gnaw through defenses without aviation. Unless, of course, the Armed Forces of Ukraine do not "merge" again. But how can you count on it?
In truth, even the United States would not have been able to destroy the entire aviation of Ukraine in one morning, there would not have been enough time, with any outfit of forces involved. We also did not have enough means of destruction.
It is impossible not to note that the enemy again played along with us. His planes were drawn up at the airfields wing to wing and the Ukrainians did not even try to disperse them. What if they were concentrated?
Now there is an emergency build-up of the grouping, more and more columns are entering from Belarus and Crimea. And the war hasn't really started yet.
It is not surprising that D. Peskov has already announced that Zelensky is still considered the legitimate president, and high-ranking leaders of the Russian Federation have already begun to demonstrate their readiness for negotiations. Zelensky, meanwhile, is distributing weapons to everyone in Kyiv, they don’t even ask for documents. And these people really want to fight! However, this is another question, about street fights, sights and the night, he was already here. We will not repeat.
Comment from February 25th: Both the United States and the leading NATO countries refused to fight for Ukraine. But force majeure can never be ruled out. For example, the attempts of "stoned" Kievans with machine guns received on the street to attack Russian troops will inevitably cause their mass death, and it will give a "juicy" picture for the Western media, which, ultimately, can lead to the same effect that the Russian victory led to fleet in Sinop - the insane mass manifestation of the desire of the masses of the West to fight with Russia. And everything can change, and in the same format in which the USSR participated in Korea - below the nuclear threshold. And then all of the above will suddenly become a reality. Maybe even next week. The United States is slowly moving troops to Europe.
Another unpleasant moment is our airfields. We do not practice the construction of concrete shelters for aircraft at air bases, and recently, according to foreign satellite photos, the dispersal of aircraft around the airfield has not been practiced either. Our planes stand wing to wing, freely observed by satellite reconnaissance, and just a few cluster bombs or cluster warheads for missiles are enough to immediately deprive us of dozens of planes that came under attack at the airfield. NATO, on the other hand, has such a level of protection for aircraft at bases that only a nuclear strike can guarantee the complete destruction of aircraft, and one ammunition is not always enough. The successful attack of the militants against the Khmeimim air base forced them to build concrete shelters there, however, they are incomparable with NATO ones, firstly, and secondly, these shelters are in line, dispersal of aircraft around the air base without their withdrawal from shelters is impossible. On the territory of Russia itself, nothing changes, although it is impossible to guarantee that some of our airfields will not be hit during a major war.
Satellite photos of the airbase Inzhirlik in Turkey. Concrete hangars are dispersed over a large area, the presence of aircraft from the satellite is not determined, the simultaneous destruction of all aircraft with non-nuclear weapons is difficult, many dozens of missiles are required in a salvo, at least one per shelter. Photo: freeze frame of the video channel "Divan Legion Strategist"
A typical Russian airbase, lined up aircraft in the parking lot, without shelters, are easily hit by several weapons with cluster warheads. Photo: Google maps
Comment from February 25th: And the second day of the war gave us an example - the Ukrainian missile attack on the Millerovo airfield, in the Rostov region, during which 4 people were killed and one Su-30SM fighter was destroyed. That is, NATO did not attack, but we received a blow to the airfield, we lost 4 people and a plane.
Details, here, there are photos and videos, for cheers-patriots. The episode, by the way, makes you ask - how are we doing with Russian air defense? The S-400 would easily intercept such a target.
One of the photos in the link.
The hit is clearly not direct, in a concrete shelter the plane could have survived
Again, on the other hand, we have an effective military air defense, which cannot be suppressed without a large-scale air offensive operation, and the West will not go for such an operation right now.
Our position is by no means hopeless, we can win in Ukraine even with limited American and European intervention. The question is the price.
For a very long time, one of the approaches often shown in Russian military development was that combat readiness should be paid attention, of course, but to the rest of the resources, to what remains after the industry is fed and the PR is absolutely incredible in scale.
When it was necessary to painstakingly choose what to spend our meager budgets on, we played Poseidons, unarmed patrol ships, super-expensive ship radars that do not work, the Yunarmiya, ekranoplans and other similar things. Our type of combat aircraft produced does not depend on the needs of the Aerospace Forces, but on the fact that aircraft factories should not be idle. We have Tu-22M3 long-range bombers, but we don't have a compact cruise missile for them. As a result, they turn into a thing in themselves - against a modern enemy, free-falling bombs do not win much.
But we have PR for the Kinzhal complex. So what? During the ongoing exercises, the MiG-31K with the “Dagger” was transferred to Syria, but we never saw a strike on a sea target - instead, there was a strike on a ground target, which was accompanied by a miss of a promoted missile.
And if there was a maneuver of the ship, would there be interference (they will be when attacking the ship)? How would the advertised "Dagger" cope with this task?
Again, do not misunderstand the situation - today it is already obvious that this missile is needed to deliver nuclear strikes against especially important stationary targets, such as American nuclear weapons depots in Europe, and therefore a miss of 10-20 meters is not fundamental for it , and you don’t need a lot of them, but with us this weapon was promoted and promoted in a completely different way, and most importantly, this is not PR together with real weapons of the Aerospace Forces with massive high-precision weapons, this is PR instead him. And this is completely different.
I don’t want to say bad things about S. K. Shoigu, objectively he is one of the best defense ministers in our recent history, but this is precisely his personal failure, and it’s stupid to deny him. Yes, a lot was done for the combat power of the RF Armed Forces, including by him personally, but a lot of "holes" in the defense capability were left, "holes" that no one thinks to close and which will come out sideways to us in a real war, because the enemy knows about them.
And then suddenly this most real war was on the threshold - suddenly, as usual. We have been pouring money into the armed forces since 2009. Time to prepare is over, it's time to show the results, but what are they?
Comment from February 25th: by the end of the day you can see what. Yes, Russia is winning. Yes, Russia will win. But - the old "motorcycle leagues" endless ambushes of single vehicles, Ukrainian aviation working on Russian troops and everything else is higher on the list.
Is the merit of S.K. Shoigu, how quickly did we get to Kyiv? Yes, definitely.
Is it his fault that, in fact, we are trying to defeat the 35-million-strong state by a grouping that is slightly larger than the one that entered Chechnya in 1999, which is strangely rare compared to the same Syria, you can see drones, well, everything else is like minimum expected? Definitely too.
It turned out that today, in February 2022, the RF Armed Forces do not have the qualities necessary for such operations. Although they could.
However, the fact that such operations had to be carried out at all is also a failure, but S.K. Shoigu is no longer involved in it.
The Dutch sociologist Sebald Steinmetz wrote in his book The Philosophy of War:
“...historical justice is carried out in the war. In the war, the entire significance of a given people is brought to justice, which has found its expression in all the circumstances of the life of the state and its social forces. There is nothing more magnificent, more uplifting, and more useful than this implacable judgment! In war, everything, absolutely everything, without exception, contributes to success or defeat, everything past of the people (the past - Approx. A.T.), and all its present, with all its strengths and all its weaknesses, finds appreciation here.
Hegel wrote that war is "the triumph of the one who is better." Better not in the sense of being more honest and correct, but in the sense of being stronger, smarter, more resolute.
We suddenly come to the point where we have to take the exam and prove that we are better. Business, not PR. And we will be assessed not by enthusiastic patriotic inhabitants from the comments on the Internet, and not paid propagandists, we will be assessed by our enemies, obsessed with the idea of our murder and not accepting any other possible options. And this will not happen sometime in the future, it will happen now - our troops are already entering the Donbass, and Ukraine does not even think about stopping the shelling. Only a few days left before the collisionas it turned out later - there were 12 hours left).
And the enemies are indifferent to what you personally believe in absolutely, and they will not die from the fact that you believe in the omnipotence of the “Dagger”, your belief that everything is right with us will not kill any of them. PR cannot kill, and that is exactly what is needed in a war.
And I must say that, apparently, this has begun to reach people from the high corridors of power.
Let's remember the provocation with the American submarine in our waters. Read more in the article by M. Klimov "Shaposhnikov against" Virginia "at Urup. What was it". And now we are watching the video of the report of S. K. Shoigu to the Supreme Commander.
Somehow, the minister's youthful confidence in everything, which he had demonstrated earlier, diminished. And why? But because the enemy took and showed his real capabilities. And it turned out that PR cannot fight submarines. The president also looks somewhat dissatisfied.
The behavior of the director of the Foreign Intelligence Service at the historic meeting of the Security Council is also indicative.
What was it? It was stress of a level that a mere mortal simply cannot imagine. Naryshkin, like no one, has a good idea of what we are now up against with weapons in our hands, and such a reaction is understandable. It is for fools from the Internet that the West can be overturned with one left, but in reality the gap in our and their capabilities is terrible. Here the person also was worried, happens.
But pleased with the unity of the elites. These confessions on camera that the Republic of Donbass must be recognized are almost an oath of allegiance, if you like. People went to confrontation with the West, publicly burning bridges behind their backs and remembering how it ended for Hussein and Gaddafi at the time. This, of course, is good, and knocks the thesis about real estate in London out of the hands of anti-Russian propagandists. It may be, this real estate, but it has just been neglected indicatively.
But do they all accurately imagine our capabilities?
Comment from February 25th: Now it is clear that it is definitely not. The elites overestimated the military capabilities of the Russian Armed Forces, and underestimated the will of the Ukrainians to resist. But the author hinted at a war with NATO. At the same time, we, of course, will break Ukraine. But, "on the verge", with difficulty. Though fast
There is no doubt that Russia will win any confrontation with Ukraine.
There is no doubt that Russia will defeat NATO if there is a limited-scale clash in Ukraine.
But, alas, there is no doubt that in previous years the complacency of our leaders created a number of critical weaknesses and vulnerabilities in our military capabilities - such that were not due to objective difficulties, nor the economy, nor the weakness of industry, but only stupidity. some leaders and the evil will of others, and occasionally a vicious control system "on the ground" (sights, for example). Many of these people are still in power and positions.
The crisis in Ukraine and the upcoming military clash on its territory is the last, really the last warning for our country. There will be no others. Passing this “exam” with any grade other than “excellent” will mean that in a serious fight in our current state, we simply will not survive - and the arrogance of the Americans is largely due to the fact that they understand everything.
We must immediately begin to get rid of our shortcomings, and get rid of them very quickly, otherwise the "inexorable court of war" will pass a death sentence on us. Just a little later, with another enemy, not with Ukraine.
Afterword of February 25th
Now it is obvious that the original plan of the operation went "slightly" not as planned. We did not manage to reach Kiev on time and now there is a risk of encountering unplanned strong resistance there. They did not enter Kharkov and until the middle of the 25th they could not defeat the grouping near the city, and even now it is not clear what is there. Near Nikolaev, the Armed Forces of Ukraine calmly form brigade battle groups, maneuver and use helicopters. Happy. They began to bomb them only on the night of the 25th to the 26th, before that they fought like that.
In the Donbass, militiamen tie down the outnumbered Ukrainian troops at any cost, moving them several kilometers a day to prevent them from transferring reserves against the Russian Armed Forces from there. Let's remember their contribution and the price they pay for our common success.
And what did we show our opponents? On the one hand, there is courage and readiness to solve really big problems with small forces.
On the other hand, they showed that, for example, we are no longer ready for a full-scale war with a country of the level of Poland. With decisive goals - for sure. Although we will win, of course, too, but at an unacceptable price.
They showed that our mega-cool PR does not reflect reality. In PR, we have "Zircons", in an offensive in a real war - "motorbike leagues". True, there are also infantry fighting vehicles, just not modernized.
In PR, we have the Russian Aerospace Forces, in real life we "ted" five missiles per airbase.
And showed a lot more. And they didn’t show much, drones, for example, which we generally have, didn’t show. Despite the fact that we can fight, and we will win this war, and in such a way that Western planners with their 20-year fiasco in Afghanistan and almost the same in Iraq will envy. But there are "nuances" and they are unacceptable.
But the most important thing in all this is that it is time for us to correct ourselves. PR can't kill.