A few days ago, Lieutenant-General Herbert Raymond McMaster, Head of the Land Forces Training and Doctrine Department, spoke at the Washington Center for Strategic and International Studies. The speech of the military leader summed up the research work “The Russian New Generation Warfare” (“Russian methods of the new generation war”). American experts studied the latest changes in the Russian armed forces and made certain conclusions. As the study of the topic showed, the situation is changing rapidly and no longer allows foreign countries to ignore it. The full text of the report is still available only to specialists of the US military, but its main provisions have already been announced during the speech of G. R. MacMaster
Studying the Ukrainian conflict, in which the Russian armed forces allegedly take part, the authors of the report “The Russian New Generation Warfare” came to some conclusions. They determined that Russia possesses artillery with high firepower, is armed with excellent combat vehicles, and also learned how to use reconnaissance unmanned aerial vehicles of a tactical level. According to General McMaster, if the American army will have to face the Russian land forces, such a conflict could be a “rude awakening.”
At the same time, the general criticized the existing views on the development of his own army. Much has been said about the benefits of high-precision long-range missiles. However, this is only a means by which you can enter the main door. This raises the question of what and how to do after entering through this "door". G.R. McMaster recalled the means available to Russia to counter attacks. In particular, the presence of semi-professional forces capable of literally dissolving among the civilian population makes it possible to strike at the infrastructure of the troops. As a result, the enemy of the Russian troops will be forced to engage in close combat and lead almost hand-to-hand combat. At the same time, it should not be forgotten that the American command was neglecting the possibilities of close combat.
One of the ways to remedy the situation, the general called the development of artillery. You should use the old and new systems, as well as increase their number. General McMaster recalled that while the US reduced artillery units, Russian troops were engaged in the development of this kind of troops, creating new systems and ammunition for them. As a result, to date, the United States is losing to Russia in terms of the number of artillery, which negatively affects the balance of power and requires new steps to reduce the backlog from the US military leadership.
Another method of correcting the situation G.R. MacMaster called the concept of Cross-domain fires, implying the formation of large information and control networks. In this case, the troops will be able to detect various targets in different environments, and then carry out a strike using one or another means. It is assumed that in this case the shock potential of the troops will increase significantly. Currently, everything is being done to build such systems.
Philip Karber, who is the head of the Potomac Foundation, told about another direction in which there is a lag. This specialist worked for some time in Ukraine and collected information on the methods used by the parties to this conflict. Analysis of the collected data shows that the United States overestimated the importance of high-precision artillery ammunition and unreasonably underestimate the massive strikes using conventional projectiles. Back in the eighties, the American armed forces gradually began to get rid of conventional ammunition for artillery.
Over the past decades, progress has not stood still, which has led to the development of various ammunition. Thus, at present, thermobaric ammunition is one of the most dangerous classes of Russian weapons. According to F. Karbera, Russian troops, using cluster bombs with armor-piercing striking elements and thermobaric ammunition, in just three minutes were able to destroy two mechanized battalions. The specialist also recommends that you carefully study the topic of thermobaric ammunition in order to know their potential.
F. Karber notes the active use of electronic warfare by Russian troops. Systems of this class are used to detect command posts and military units. In addition, using interference is the suppression of communication channels. The head of the Potomac Foundation claims that the Russian troops, allegedly operating in Ukraine, with the help of electronic warfare could simultaneously “jam” all communications in large areas. In addition, a system was used to disrupt the electronic fuses of artillery shells.
Lt. Gen. McMaster believes that there are problems not only with missiles and shells, but also in other areas. In particular, the American armored vehicles lost their advantage over the Russian technology. So, the MXDUMX Bradley infantry fighting vehicle has high performance and has worked well, but now the situation has changed. Russia is implementing new projects for the development and construction of armored vehicles, as well as various systems for them. In particular, additional protection complexes are being created. The US military is required to return to the active development of armored vehicles.
American experts say that the Ukrainian conflict was a real test for Russian tanks T-90, and they passed the test with great success. Such armored vehicles have already been used in Dagestan and Syria, and now, allegedly, have shown their potential in Ukraine. According to F. Karber, there is not a single known case when Ukrainian troops managed to destroy the T-90.
Modern electronics of this tank allows the crew to work in difficult conditions, in any weather and at any time of the day. In addition, the T-90 is equipped with a dynamic defense system that drastically reduces the likelihood of being hit by anti-tank weapons. Also, tanks carry opto-electronic suppression complexes that are capable of disrupting attacks. F. Carber quotes a Ukrainian tanker who allegedly had a chance to run into T-90. According to this fighter, there was a “wonderful shield” around the enemy tank, because of which the guided missile went up and did not hit the target.
A curious feature of the current conflict in Ukraine, experts call the method of using unmanned aerial vehicles. Unlike the military of other countries that use similar equipment to search for priority goals, both sides of the Ukrainian war use it to search for any enemy targets. Thus, drones solve the same problem as the aircraft during the First World War. According to American experts, the pro-Russian formations use 16 types of unmanned vehicles.
F. Karber also claims that a new ammunition for multiple launch rocket systems was developed in Russia. It starts with a standard launcher, after which the body is reset. The load of this product is a drone that can patrol in a given area and, if necessary, destroy the specified target. However, the expert is not sure that such systems were used in the Ukrainian conflict.
G.R. McMaster believes that the development of all technologies, well-proven in recent conflicts, will change the face of war in the near future. However, upgraded weapons and ammunition will not be the decisive factor for them. People will still occupy and hold territories, and also perform various additional tasks. In addition, an important tool to reduce losses and end the conflict is the search for compromises. According to General McMaster, operations should be planned in such a way that the outcome of the war is decided by political means. In this case, special priority is given to negotiations, mediation between the conflicting parties and the achievement of agreements.
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