In addition, Washington is actively developing cooperation with Romania and Poland on the creation of a global missile defense system. Poland is still viewed by the United States as an important buffer between Germany and Russia, a tool for anti-Russian policy in Eastern Europe. It is possible that Poland will become the springboard of the American troops if they are asked from Germany. Therefore, it is not surprising that while most of the countries of the Old World are reducing armed forces, heavy weapons, focusing on the concept of "contactless war", Poland, on the contrary, pays great attention to strengthening ground forces, increasing the number of heavy equipment and weapons.
Polish Minister of Defense Tomash Semonyak after meeting together with his colleagues from Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, he said that the military departments of Poland, Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia agreed to annually coordinate a common position on defense issues. According to the Polish Minister of Defense, Warsaw is in favor of closer cooperation within the European Union. The ministers of the four states discussed the strengthening of quadrilateral cooperation.
Lithuanian Minister of Defense Juozas Olekas expressed the hope that now their voice in the European Union and NATO “will be stronger”. The Lithuanian Minister commended the Steadfast Jazz large-scale NATO exercises in early November 2013, stating at the same time that it was necessary to be ready for new challenges for the region and the entire world community, in particular, related to cybernetic and energy security.
Let me remind you that the teachings of Steadfast Jazz were the largest NATO maneuvers since the beginning of the century. These teachings have opened a new page in stories NATO and restored the practice of large-scale military exercises in Europe. The maneuvers were held on the 11 ranges in Poland and the Baltic countries, they were attended by more than 6 thousand soldiers, 13 ships, more 50 airplanes and helicopters, 350 armored vehicles from 19 NATO member countries, as well as the military of the two partners of the North Atlantic Alliance - Sweden and Ukraine. 8 headquarters took part in the command-staff part of the exercise. According to the exercise scenario, the fictional country of Botnia attacked Estonia. Botnia is a major regional power, “possessing significant reserves of oil and gas,” which was affected by the socio-economic and political crisis, and its leadership decided to unleash a war. NATO, in accordance with the 5-th article of the Washington Treaty on Collective Defense, provided military assistance to Estonia. In Botnia you can easily see Russia. In parallel with the “Strong Jazz” maneuvers, the Baltic Host 2013 military maneuvers were also conducted, with our likely adversary testing the readiness of the military infrastructure of the Baltic countries to accept NATO troops. Thus, the NATO countries do not hide who their main enemy is in the eastern direction. Especially often they raise a hysteria about the “Russian threat” in the Baltic States, Scandinavia and Poland.
The Minister of Defense of Latvia, Artis Pabriks, noted that Poland and the Baltic countries belong to the few members of the North Atlantic Alliance and the European Union, which implement the defense expenditure recommendation in the amount of 2% of GDP. He also noted that the Eastern Partnership and the Scandinavian countries are of defense interest for the four Eastern European states. The ministers of war also raised issues of regional cooperation in the field of anti-missile and air defense, the development of special forces, joint exercises and military education.
A few days after this meeting, the National Center for Strategic Studies of Poland announced report: “The military geography of the Baltic Sea. Conclusions for the modernization of the Polish Navy. The analytical report clearly states that a potential adversary for the Polish armed forces is the army of the Russian Federation. According to the authors of the report, the Polish armed forces must be ready to participate in a military conflict “short-term and intensive,” but not necessarily very tense.
The report's authors reported that in the next 20 years, Poland may be attacked by Russia. A political or economic conflict with Belarus or Russia, the desire of Warsaw to influence the countries economically controlled by the Russian Federation (apparently a hint of Ukraine) or worsening the geopolitical position of the Polish state can lead to war with Russia. Fighting is also possible in the Baltic, where Poland may be drawn into a likely conflict between NATO allies and Russia.
An analysis of the military-strategic importance of the Baltic region, where the political, economic and military interests of many states intersect, shows its serious interrelation "with the question of the existence of independent and sovereign Baltic countries, as well as Belarus and Ukraine." Therefore, effective regional military cooperation with Sweden and Finland is gaining an important role. It is noted that in the event of a military conflict, Russia may use the ports of the Baltic countries. As a result, the independence of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia is becoming one of the key factors for operations in the Baltic Sea. Ports in Tallinn (this port does not freeze most of the year), in Riga, Ventspils (a port that freezes very rarely), in Liepaja and Klaipeda are of military strategic importance. From a military and strategic point of view, it is important to prevent the Russian armed forces from seizing the Estonian coast, which will allow them to break through the blockade. The fulfillment of these conditions, according to the authors of the report, will lead to the fact that the Polish armed forces will receive a strategic advantage in operations in the Baltic.
Polish analysts tried to answer the question: how can a conflict scenario develop between Poland and the Russian Federation? According to Polish experts, the military conflict in the Baltic Sea can develop rapidly and erupt from a single spark, as it was during the war between Russia and Georgia. The Russian armed forces during this war showed the whole world how, within 24 hours, it is possible to switch from peaceful to martial law. In recent years, Russia and Belarus have been practicing various military scenarios, including a conflict with Poland. Representatives of the National Center for Strategic Studies believe that the armed forces of the Russian Federation are organizationally and technically ready within one day to create a group of forces against Poland. Its creation will be implemented by the transfer of military transport aviation formations and units of the airborne troops and special forces in Belarus and Kaliningrad. As a result, a group of forces with a total number of 160 thousand bayonets will be concentrated in the territory of Belarus and the Kaliningrad region.
They further declare that the Russian armed forces would launch Polish airfields with rocket attacks from the Tochka-U and Iskander tactical missile systems, destroying the basis of the Polish Air Force — the 48 F-16 fighter jets. Then the Russian attack aircraft Su-27 and Su-30 neutralize the command posts and communication centers of the Armed Forces of Poland. After that, the Russian Air Force planes without any problems will strike the country's infrastructure — power plants, pipelines, highways and railroad junctions, large industrial enterprises, etc. Russian fighter aircraft in the number of 200 planes will easily win air supremacy. The defeat of the Polish troops will complete the blows of the Russian artillery and armored and mechanized formations, which can go all over Poland with an avalanche.
Thus, Polish experts are clearly impressed with the recent successes in restoring the combat potential of the Russian Armed Forces, as well as the military defeat of Georgia, and paint such a gloomy picture that they immediately recall the most successful operations of the Red Army during the Great Patriotic War. Apparently, analysts want once again to frighten the Polish leadership and society with the “Russian threat” so that Warsaw should pay more attention to the army. Indeed, in reality, the state of the Russian Armed Forces is far from ideal and a lot of effort must be made to keep them at the proper level.
Received in 2002 from the German Bundeswehr Tanks Leopard 2A4 of the Polish 10th Armored Cavalry Brigade of the 11th Luba Armored Cavalry Division named after King Jan III Sobieski
Taking into account the above “black scenario” of the development of a military conflict with Russia, experts of the National Center for Strategic Studies suggest:
- to establish good neighborly and trustful relations with neighboring states, including Russia and Belarus;
- to intensify cooperation with the countries of the North Atlantic Alliance and the European Union;
- improve and develop the potential of the Polish Armed Forces;
- it is noted that complete strategic security of the Republic of Poland can only be ensured by a strategic partnership with the United States. In their opinion, the deployment of American troops in Poland will not only deter potential adversaries from a military strike, but also allow the national armed forces to be brought to a new technological level that meets modern requirements.
Hopes for Washington are also supported by periodically appearing in the Polish media reports that, despite the Pentagon’s budget cuts, the United States will maintain its military presence in Europe. Thus, General Philip Breedlove, the commander-in-chief of the NATO Joint Armed Forces in Europe, said that it was simply not possible to reduce US bases, because then the United States would lose the ability to react promptly and actively to threats in Africa, the Middle East and Eastern Europe. Therefore, we should expect the redeployment of 15 thousand US troops from Germany to Poland and the Baltic countries, closer to the borders of Russia. It also deployed elements of a global missile defense system. The fact that the US missile defense system in Europe is directed against Russia is obvious to almost everyone.
True, Polish experts, relying on the United States, clearly forgot the sad experience of 1939. Then in Warsaw they focused on Paris and London, hoping for the help of the British fleet and a powerful offensive by the Anglo-French forces on the Western Front. However, England and France showed complete indifference to the fate of Poland. They formally declared war on Germany, but actually did not fight, giving Berlin calmly crush the Polish state. Moreover, the Polish military-political leadership then missed the only chance to preserve the Polish state in the then geopolitical situation - an alliance with the Soviet Union. Although Moscow aggressively offered itself to the allies, which gave Warsaw a guarantee of security against a Wehrmacht strike. The Polish and Soviet armed forces together were clearly stronger than the German army. So now the Poles are clearly overestimating the importance of the United States in the security of Poland. Washington, without batting an eye, will sacrifice Warsaw if American national interests demand it. Americans, and Western Europeans, will not fight for Poland.
Polish modernized MiG-29
The report of the National Center for Strategic Studies fully coincides with the previously adopted new military-political doctrine of the country (“Polish fangs”). Warsaw made a decision to reorient the expenses from the support of international military operations, for example, in Afghanistan, to the development of mobility and firepower of the armed forces, priority is given to ground forces and the development of the national air defense-missile defense system. It is planned to spend about 2022 billion dollars for the program of modernization of the Armed Forces before 45, which is a record amount in the conditions of the economic crisis that hit Europe.
The main programs under this strategy are:
- A significant part of the funds will go to the development of the national military industrial complex. Consolidation of disparate military enterprises is underway, in September, Prime Minister Donald Tusk announced this. The Polish Armaments Group should include the companies WZMS, HSW, Polish Defense Holding, as well as other small manufacturers;
- Purchase from the USA of 1250 air-to-air, air-to-ground missiles and bombs for F-16 fighter-bombers. Among weapons - 158 air-to-air missiles with an infrared homing head, 284 bombs weighing a ton of 1 each, they are capable of penetrating reinforced concrete overlapping 4 meters thick;
- in 2011, the program of repair and modernization of 16 MiG-29 air forces of the country (13 single and three combat training MiG-29UB) was launched. Total armed with the country are 32 machines. MiGs upgrades must be completed by the end of 2014. After that, the MiG-29 will serve up to the 2028 year. In mid-November, the Polish Air Force received the fourth modernized MiG-2013A fighter jet in mid-November. Until the end of the year, two more aircraft must be upgraded;
- In October 2013, the Polish Air Force received the last upgraded training aircraft PZL-130 Orlik TC-II. Total Polish Ministry of Defense received 16 aircraft. And in 2011, in Poland, a program was launched to develop a new modernization of the Orlik training aircraft;
- In November 2013, the European aircraft manufacturing concern Airbus handed over Poland the last two military transport aircraft C-295. Five PTSs were purchased in the 2012 year. Now the Polish Air Force 17 transports C-295 (the first eight were purchased in the 2001 year, in the 2006-2007 - four);
- to 2018-2020 Poland's Ministry of Defense plans to buy unmanned aerial vehicles to 205. In total, the development and purchase of unmanned aerial vehicles is planned to spend about 650-975 million. The UAVs will become the basis of the country's reconnaissance troops; special forces, artillery units and ground forces will receive them. In November 2013, special forces and artillery regiments received Fly Eye 12 vehicles. The supply contract was signed in February 2013. Total plan to get to 50 such UAVs. In 2014, the Polish military are going to select a supplier of unmanned aerial vehicles for the ground forces. UAVs will be used at brigade and divisional levels. Negotiations are underway with representatives of French companies Dassault, Sagem, EADS and Thales, the French will have to work in consortium with the Polish company WB Electronics. In a consortium with a Polish company, French firms will have to develop various types of UAVs, including drums;
- At the beginning of 2012, a contract was signed for the supply of five W-3WA Sokol multi-purpose helicopters and the upgrading of 14 machines. Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk announced in September 2012 plans to purchase new military helicopters for the 70 army. In particular, a tender was announced for the supply of 26 multi-purpose helicopters;
- In 2012, the Navy's development plan for the year before 2030 was announced. Given the lack of funds and the priority of other areas of change will be small. They plan to buy three new submarines and get three new ships. In addition, the sailors will receive several attack and search and rescue helicopters, coastal missile systems, autonomous surface vehicles and drones. In October, the Polish Ministry of Defense resumed the 2013 Corvette project of the Gavron project, it was nevertheless decided to be completed (the construction program of such ships was closed in the 621 year), and they also ordered the construction of three new minesweepers. All ships must be handed over to the Polish Navy in 2012;
- At the start of 2013, the Polish Ministry of Defense signed contracts with Bumar Elektronika for the supply of 15 radars for the Air Force and the ground forces. The contract amount was 161,2 million. Delivery of the radar will begin in the 2015 year, and will end in the 2017 year. The Air Force should receive eight upgraded mobile radar stations TRS-15M Odra-M. Earlier, the Air Force had already received six such radars. The ground forces should receive seven mobile radar stations for detecting enemy fire weapons RZRA-201 Liwiec;
- In the summer of 2013, the Polish Ministry of Defense announced a tender for the supply of medium-range anti-aircraft and anti-missile systems. The cost of the program to create a national air defense system - PRO Vistula is estimated at 8,4 billion dollars. The bet is made on mobile connections capable of protecting the country from short-range and medium-range missiles. Before 2022, the Polish military plan to get six batteries of medium-range Wisla missiles, Narew short-range systems, Poprad self-propelled complexes, Pilica missile artillery systems, Perun missile launchers and missiles, and radar stations Sola and Bystra. It is also possible to purchase an MEADS or Aster-30 medium-range air defense system. At the same time, Poland is one of the key countries in Eastern Europe for hosting components of the NATO missile defense system. The United States is planning to deploy SM-2018 Block IIA interceptor missiles at the Polish Air Force base in Redzikowo by 3;
Polish short-range ADMS POPRAD
- Much attention is paid to the development of ground forces. In 2012, plans were announced to double the tank fleet in Poland. Polish ground forces have more than 900 tanks: Leopard 2A4, variants T-72. The Polish army plans to acquire up to 1 thousand new tanks in various versions. Thus, work continues on the Anders light tank program. Anders is a combat platform that is designed to create a range of vehicles: a fire support fighting vehicle (light tank), an infantry fighting vehicle and special vehicles. In November, 2013, Poland signed a contract for the acquisition of 119 German Leopard tanks (14 Tanks Leopard 2A4 and 105 Leopard 2A5). They will be delivered in 2014-2015's;
- to increase the firepower and mobility of the army, the Ministry of Defense concluded several contracts. 307 BRT Rosomak ("Wolverine") was purchased, to date, the army has about 570 such multipurpose armored personnel carriers. The contract for the supply of 690 machines was signed in 2003 year. More 307 machines are bought on 12 July, 2013, they will be delivered before 2018. To increase mobility, the military department bought 2013 910 Jelcz 422.32 (Jelcz) vehicles in early December. All cars will be delivered in 2014-2018's. Apparently, later will follow new contracts, as it is necessary to replace thousands of obsolete machines;
- The army's shock power is being increased by the supply of X-NUMX-mm self-propelled Krab howitzers and X-NUMX-mm mortars Rak. The Ministry of National Defense of Poland in 155 and 120 signed contracts for the supply of 2008 self-propelled Krab howitzers (three batteries), 2011 armored fire control machines, six WA ammunition hauling machines and one weapon repair vehicle. Before 24, they plan to get some more 11 howitzers. In 2025-100 several dozen 2014-mm self-propelled Krab howitzers will be purchased.
Installations from the first serial battery of the Polish 155-mm self-propelled howitzer Krab from the 11 Mazury Artillery Regiment
Thus, the Polish armed forces clearly do not follow the European trend to reduce the number of troops and heavy weapons. On the contrary, Poland is building up the strength of its armed forces. Polish experts almost openly say that Russia is the main enemy of Poland.