• Tue. Jun 21st, 2022

This guide shows how to defeat Russia in modern warfare


The US military has published a manual on how to defeat Russia’s hybrid warfare strategy.

The Russian New Generation War Manual, published in December 2016 and recently released on the internet, examines Russian hybrid military tactics and how the US military can counter them.

The manual, a nifty sixty-eight-page publication filled with photos and data on Russian equipment that could be used to wage an asymmetric warfare, focused on Russian operations in Ukraine and the Crimea, which involved small troops from the United States. special operations – sometimes operating under cover – and small, heavily armed formations of Russian regular troops supporting local separatist groups. He concludes that the Russian strategy is based on achieving regime change by partnering with local proxy forces, rather than on a conventional military victory for Russian troops. “Because the new objective is the change of an entire system of government, the RNGW approach can use any leverage within its reach to effect this change,” explains the military study. “Not all regime change has to be resolved with a military option, but when a military lever is activated, it is done by, with and through segments of the local population. The involvement of the local population gives validity to military action on the world stage.

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The manual notes that Russia has taken the US approach of covering the battlefield with manned and unmanned sensor systems to detect enemy forces, which can then be destroyed by air power and artillery. “At the tactical level, the Russian forces’ approach to modern warfare can be summed up as’ the acquisition of objectives’,” explains the army.

“The Russian forces took this concept and applied it to their doctrine. The Russian concept consists of the ability to launch devastating indirect fire, while staying at bay from their enemy and protecting their own forces through the use of ADA. [air defense artillery] and EW [electronic warfare]. Once adequate fire has been delivered, ground forces begin to maneuver, preferably with an armored element to ensure time and space for indirect fire and protection platforms to advance and restart the cycle.

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The US Army manual also looks at Russian tactical operations in Hybrid Warfare. In eastern Ukraine, Ukrainian troops were immobilized – leaving them sitting like ducks for air and artillery – by Russian F1 wire hand grenades. “An old guide wire, from an anti-tank guided missile, provides the RLSF [Russian-Led Separatist Forces] with a supply of trigger wire that looks like normal battlefield debris. RLSF also uses fishing line dipped in motor oil to blend in with the normal colors of the surroundings.

Russia has also widely used several layers of snipers in Ukraine. “The first rank will be made up of proxy forces trained as designated shooters. Behind them will be a mixed force of better trained proxies / mercenaries and snipers, not institutionally trained snipers with Russian soldiers. The bottom row consists of highly skilled snipers and will be the best equipped. All of these rankings focus on one target area together.

The manual identifies several Russian weaknesses that US forces can exploit. Not surprisingly, they resemble the problems of the old Soviet army. Conscript soldiers lack motivation (although this will become less of a problem as the Russian military becomes a professional force). Tactical leadership is stereotypical, logistics are weak, and air and artillery support tends to be rigid and dependent on volume rather than precision.

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The manual recommends that US forces train to fight in an environment where electronic warfare scrambles GPS and radios, and the establishment of a large command post bristling with antennas is an invitation to a Russian roadblock. Yet, it is interesting to note that while the US military warns of the potency of Russian air defense and electronic warfare equipment, it also notes that these items are currently scarce and concentrated in Kaliningrad, Ukraine and Syria. “They don’t have the depth of digits to support the losses in the system and still operate on a broad front. The loss of just one of these systems is a blow to the Russian forces and creates a vacuum in their A2AD [antiaccess/area-denial] exploitable bubble.

Michael Peck is a contributing writer for the National interest. It can be found on Twitter and Facebook. This one first appeared in 2017 and is reposted due to reader interest.

Image: Reuters

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