The Northern Fist of the United States against Russia: The Threat of Kaliningrad and Nuclear Forces
After the beginning of the Ukrainian crisis, the flow of anti-Russian propaganda in the world reached the span of the times of the Soviet Union. But while in most EU countries there are relatively neutral forces calling for reconciliation, in the countries of Scandinavia and the Baltic states the line towards Russia is as radical and destructive as possible. It is in these countries that US influence is constantly growing: in the Baltic States there are no independent states at all, and in Scandinavia, the process is actively going in the same direction. Interestingly, of the four Scandinavian countries (we assign Finland to them as well - it does not always appear in this geographical concept) NATO includes only Norway and Denmark, while Sweden and Finland still maintain non-blocking status, at least in words. Nevertheless, the wave of anti-Russian hysteria and militarization is overwhelming and these two states.
Disinformation and lies at the highest level are used: what was it worth история with a Russian nuclear submarine, supposedly swimming in the territorial waters of Sweden. Only now, why did a heavy missile carrier need to swim there and how could such an object be missed, no one answered - irresponsibility in big politics is now in vogue. Norway, in general, constantly pours “crocodile tears” - focusing attention on flights of the Russian strategic aviation (which, by the way, has never violated anyone’s borders), and most recently put forward a ridiculous assumption that Russian research vessels "spy" behind them, located at the former Olavsvern submarine base. The Norwegian authorities sold the base a few years ago themselves, since the cost of its operation was huge, but it didn’t have much military meaning - it won’t save one on one in the war with the Russian Federation, although it really is a powerful refuge for submarines, but in the global In the conflict, the underwater part of the Norwegian Navy is an insignificant force - only 6 Ula-class diesel-electric submarines.
The rhetoric in Denmark and Finland is not so harsh, and the amount of very obvious disinformation voiced by officials is much less. But we are about words. And the actions are no different - Denmark has already agreed to take part in the formation of the European missile defense system (EUROPRO), and Finland is actively establishing interaction of its armed forces (Armed Forces) with the armies of other Scandinavian and Baltic countries (especially Sweden) and, of course, with the US Armed Forces .
Military tandem Sweden - Finland
The most active is the formation of the military tandem Sweden - Finland, and although the intentions to create a military bloc with the participation of these countries were officially refuted, in fact the opposite is happening. Countries expressed their willingness to create joint ground and naval brigades, and at the end of March they held joint exercises of the air force. They were also attended by the US Air Force, who arrived at the Estonian airfield Emari. Moreover, the integration of the Air Forces of these two countries will continue to grow - instead of 62 aging American F / A-18 fighters, Finland is going to buy either Swedish SAAB JAS-39 Gripen of the new modification or French Dassault Rafale, and most likely the choice will fall on the "Swedes". In both cases, the interaction of the Air Forces of the countries will noticeably increase, and in the case of the purchase of JAS-39 it will reach a maximum - even the weapons and spare parts will be unified.
Now the key task for the United States in this direction is to draw these countries into NATO. The population of states is actively preparing for this - in the event of another escalation of the Ukrainian conflict, the entry of Sweden and Finland into NATO can become a matter of time.
The active deployment of US troops in the territory of Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia, as well as ongoing NATO exercises there, suggest that these three countries will become a springboard for NATO forces, including for Scandinavian aviation. The geographical location of these countries makes it possible to simultaneously strike from there both in the direction of the Kaliningrad region surrounded by NATO and in the direction of the Leningrad and Pskov regions. The armed forces of the Baltic countries themselves are extremely weak and few in number - in the sum, they can deploy only about 23 thousands of servicemen, while they cannot boast with any significant amount of military equipment, and these countries have practically no air forces. So, the main role of these states - to become a springboard for NATO troops and a battlefield - is not the most rosy prospect, but this cannot interest the anti-people authorities of these countries, "dancing to the tune" of the overseas "ally".
Norway: arctic oil bait
Among the Scandinavian countries, Norway is perhaps the highest degree of anti-Russian hysteria. And unlike the Baltic states - there is also a material substrate here - namely, Arctic oil reserves, for which the Norwegians have serious views, however, like us. This is superimposed on pressure from the United States, leading to a kind of “resonance”. In addition, the Americans can “warm up” the Arctic appetites of the Norwegians, killing two birds with one stone - forming a new enemy for Russia and increasing the supply of their weapons. Thus, Norway finds itself in a kind of "trap", the basis of which is its energy ambitions. As for the purely military component, Norway is strong with its Air Force and fleetas well as a high level of training of soldiers. Deliveries of 5th-generation F-35 American fighter jets will begin very soon, which will be purchased in the amount of 52 units, in addition to (and in the future, replacement) to the 57 F-16.
"Northern Fist" against Russia
As we can already see, the countries listed above are increasingly militarizing and uniting around anti-Russian ideology. Under the patronage of the United States formed a kind of military "fist", threatening the north-western borders of Russia. What forces and in what directions can these states advance against the Russian Federation?
1) A powerful air force group capable of operating from the Murmansk region and up to the Kaliningrad region - along the entire length of the conventional front line. In total, it includes almost 300 fighter - 62 F-18, 134 JAS-39 Gripen and 102 F-16. All airplanes are lightweight, but of quite good quality and in very serious quantities.
2) Two naval groups - the first in the "northern seas" (Northern, Norwegian, Barents), represented mainly by the Norwegian fleet. It includes 5 frigates of the Fridtjof Nansen type, equipped with Naval Strike Missile anti-ship missiles (ASM) and the Aegis combat information control system, 6 Skjold type missile boats with the same missiles and 6 Ula-type diesel submarines.
The second is in the Baltic Sea, represented by the Finnish, Swedish and Danish Navy. Here can be thrown into battle: 5 Danish frigates with American anti-ship missiles Harpoon and a good air defense system; 5 Swedish diesel-electric submarines with torpedo armament and 9 corvettes with RBS-15 RCC, 5 of which of class Visby, created using Stealth technology; 8 Finnish missile boats with anti-ship missiles RBS-15 (maximum launch range 200 km), 6 mine barriers and 13 mine sweepers.
3) Ground forces - we will not consider Danish forces here, since geographically they are somewhat “torn off” from the scene. Finland, Sweden and Denmark in total can put up 31 thousand soldiers, 284 German tank Leopard 2 and about 1000 units of various artillery. Another 23 thousand, however, completely deprived of technology, have the Baltic countries. As you can see, ground forces are the weakest point in these countries.
In addition, there is an American presence in the Baltic States - so far a small, only a few dozen pieces of equipment and several hundred personnel who officially arrived at the exercises, but so far are not in a hurry to go back to the United States.
Kaliningrad region - target number 1
The Kaliningrad region, which is actually surrounded by NATO forces, due to the presence of land borders only with Poland and Lithuania is the most vulnerable target for a potential enemy. Already, Lithuania is often satisfied with the problems in the delivery of goods across its territory, a complete land blockade, as well as an energy one, is theoretically possible.
The forces of the RF Armed Forces stationed in the Kaliningrad region are not very large, but they are actively rearming, for example, already in 2012, the most modern C-400 anti-aircraft missile systems turned out to be there. However, the number of troops is small - only about 10 thousand people.
At the same time, up to 80, thousands of servicemen can be thrown into battle from Poland and from the Baltic states — and this is without American support. The forces of the Northern Fist can provide powerful air support to Polish ground forces and try to create a naval blockade of Kaliningrad. The Baltic Fleet of the Russian Navy will oppose this attempt to take Kaliningrad in full siege - its forces are approximately equal to the combined forces of the Northern Kulak Navy: 2 destroyer of the 956 project, 2 of the modern patrol ship of the 11540 project (built using Stealth technology), 4 of the patrol ship 20380 project, 12 missile boats, 3 diesel-electric submarines. All of these ships are armed with anti-ship missiles of various types, most of which exceed the characteristics of the Scandinavian and American anti-ship missiles. So the victory in this confrontation depends more on the level of crew training and third-party factors, such as intelligence, etc.
The task of the RF Armed Forces in the event of such an aggressive attempt to occupy the Kaliningrad region should be the speediest penetration of the land corridor through Latvia and Lithuania - here they can try to prevent the ground forces and aviation of Sweden, Norway and Finland by linking part of the forces of the Western Military District (ZVO) in the Leningrad region . Of course, the ZVO forces, which concentrate up to 40% of the personnel of the RF Armed Forces, are incomparably more powerful, but nonetheless the forces of the Northern Fist may gain time until reinforcements from Western Europe and the USA approach.
Limited nuclear conflict
Is the scenario of such a major European war real in the presence of large arsenals of strategic and tactical nuclear weapons? weapons at the opposing sides? If the same Baltic states, Poland, Belarus, Ukraine, Finland, Norway — that is, non-nuclear states — become the main “battlefield,” then it is real. Nuclear strikes will not be applied to the states that possess them. Nevertheless, in this situation, the use of tactical nuclear weapons causes little doubt - this is especially relevant for us, since the number of NATO armies exceeds ours by several times in almost all indicators. As a result - in such a war the losers will be those countries that now most of all are fighting for the fight against Russia. And there will be no winners in it - both camps will receive hundreds of thousands of destroyed soldiers and mountains of destroyed military equipment. Nevertheless, humanity, as history shows, cannot long exist without wars - and there are no (major) of them in Europe since 1945. How many more years will a nuclear weapon be able to restrain aggression and hatred? It is clear that the war would have flared in Europe back in March of 2014, if not for this deterrent.
Conclusions and perspectives
1) The "Northern Fist" is really being formed. His goal so far is geopolitical pressure on Russia and the creation of a threat to the Kaliningrad region.
2) The grouping of troops in Kaliningrad should be maintained in the maximum combat-ready state; its strength, if possible, should be increased.
3) The United States, by creating a “mini” military bloc in Scandinavia and the Baltics, is even more tightly squeezing the ring of the military environment of Russia.
4) Norway, despite its ambitions, is still far from being able to deal with Russia in the Arctic. The Northern Fleet of the Russian Federation is a serious power, with which it is impossible to use 6 diesel submarines, several frigates and missile boats. Russia has 45 submarines here, including the 23 nuclear, the aircraft carrying cruiser Admiral Kuznetsov, the heavy nuclear cruiser Peter the Great and many other ships.
5) In addition to geopolitical reasons and the struggle of the US against Russia, there is a much more pressing task - to make the military-industrial complex work at full speed, despite the economic problems in most European countries. Now even conditionally impoverished Baltic states are beginning to allocate some money for the purchase of military equipment.
6) A big war in Europe can still occur - the level of tension at some moments is really close to critical. And the presence of a large number of weapons and active preparation for war can cause excess self-confidence.
7) The next step in the expansion of the European missile defense project could be the deployment of anti-missile systems in Scandinavia. The GMD (Ground-based Midcourse Defense) missile defense system will be able to intercept a portion of Russian intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) flying across the North Pole to the United States. And most importantly, to intercept them prior to the withdrawal of combat units — after all, most modern ICBMs in Russia have separable warheads. This alignment is quite possible after the 2020 year, when the current stage of the European missile defense system will be implemented and the GMD will be “brought to mind”. The temptation to start a war after such a step will naturally be even higher.
8) The countries included in this new anti-Russian bloc are not the beneficiaries - rather, on the contrary, they will have the worst of all, in which case they will become the battlefield. To the United States, as before, far away.
9) All countries that are close to Russia and host elements of US missile defense must be warned at the highest level that they will be the very first target for the strategic nuclear forces of the Russian Federation and they will receive not death, but vice versa, mortal danger. The statement should not be at the level of the ambassador, as was done in Denmark, but at the highest. The population of these countries should know what the decisions of their governments lead to.