Sino-Russian led Dessert Storm

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madrat

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Unread post16 Jun 2020, 12:57

weasel1962 wrote:Chechnya is a counter-insurgency operation, similar to US efforts post Iraqi freedom (to which US also suffered several thousand casualties). The parallel would be the Soviet experience in Afghanistan (excepting that Chechyna's still part of Russia).

Chechyna isn't the same as desert storm.


Counter insurgency? I don't think that was the case at all. This was a direct conflict after Russia meddled in Chechnya internal affairs on the guise of protecting ethnic Russians. At the time Russia was dealing with blowback of exporting Russians into local populations during Soviet times. And Chechnya had the Gulf States, China, and a host of proxies feeding their militia. The Chechnyans turned to terrorism when it was clear they couldn't match up with Russians even with the benefit of external aid. Although the Chechnyans did not have the luxury of heavy arms and an air force, they were very much organized to fight using classic ground maneuvers. Russia drew them into the cities when they invaded because they were directing fire indiscriminately on Chechnyan cultural targets.

The U.S. took the lessons from this conflict and applied it in the gulf. There was a time the U.S. would have made similar mistakes. But the U.S. wages war differently because they are progressively building on past lessons. Not every country does.
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weasel1962

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Unread post16 Jun 2020, 14:39

https://www.benning.army.mil/MSSP/Counterinsurgency/

Regardless of what some people might think, a simple Google of "Chechnya counter insurgency" would reveal the more than significant amount of literature including us army ones on the subject. Fully expect to have to repeat this.
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nastle

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Unread post16 Jun 2020, 14:41

a very interesting thread overall zero-one thanks

I think its very easy to overestimate soviet military capabilities when it comes to fighting expeditionary warfare and easy to underestimate them when fighting the kind of war they were designed for i.e against China in the east and NATO in the west.
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milosh

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Unread post16 Jun 2020, 20:24

nastle wrote:Soviets would be uable to escort any of their transport aircraft with fighters [ as they had no IFR]
if iraqis can send a squadorn of mirage F1 on a log range intercept mission it would be tunisia all over again


Iraq's Mirage F1 would need to fly long over enemy territory to be able to enter in Mediteran or Red Sea. If it survive that, it would met ships with lot of SAMs.

But even MiG-25 and MiG-25 can reach Syria from Crimea, MiG-29 with three fuel tanks, MiG-25 with one huge fuel tank, while MiG-31 and Su-27 could do that without fuel tanks and with full A-A loadout.

So Soviets could send escorts to Syria and from there they will escort cargo planes, then they will also have fighters in KSA and SAMs so I really don't think Iraq could do much against air lift.
nastle wrote:120 SS-23 were sent to DDR/bulgaria but using them in full light of the USA/NATO is highly unadvisable IMHO can lead to far bigger problems


US accept that transfer even though they criticized it because they afraid USSR could rearmed them with nukes. But if ~120 SS-23 are spend in WarPact ODS problem of SS-23 is solved.

nastle wrote:one solution could be to use the Kh-55 of the Tu-16/tu-22 of the strategic aviation, they are very long range missiles can reach bagdad if launched from bombers deep inside syria /KSA and supersonic and very large warhead


I doubt that because Kh-55 was as it is today strategic cruise missile. What they could do if no SS-23 is avabile even though their satellites had them, is using Scud-D warhead and guidence on Scud-B (Scud-D was upgraded Scud-B export only) so they will have still have INF allowed weapon but with CEP of SS-23 (~30m).

nastle wrote:true soviet marine fleet is massive but scattered ,and a prisoner of geography.And not backed by a true blue water navy [USSR had blue water ships but essentially a green water navy].The soviets would struggle to get past the turkish straits w/o NATO help and /or enter the persian gulf


Scattered as any most merchant navies, no one have big merchant navy in reserve for massive invasion but what play on soviet card is region, it was very important for Soviets and they had lot of satellites there so not small % of merchant navy was already in region.

Why would they sail in Persian gulf?

Closest route is Black sea - Ageian sea - Mediteran - Red sea.

Turkey can't close straits because of martine laws, they would surely loved to stop Russian shipment to Assad before 2016 coup d'état. But martine laws didn't allow that.

On other hand straits will somewhat slowed down sea lift but still distance is noting. Also some non esencial shipment could be even send around Africa to red Sea.
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weasel1962

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Unread post17 Jun 2020, 00:50

Back in those days, the Soviets did have a sizeable sea transport fleet. Besides the phibs comprising 3 Ivan Rogovs, 27 Ropuchas, 14 Alligators and 36 Polnocnys, they also had a merchant fleet of ~2800 vessles including 125 Roros, 14 bage carriers and 48 passenger liners with about ~20% based in the baltic.

Back in those days, Romania and Bulgaria were still part of the Warsaw pact. I think there would be some political resistance including from Nato about the use of the Bosporus (and Gibralter straits) to transit the large amounts of troops thru these regions. It may be easier to air transport thru Albania to circle thru to Syria.

Also possible to land attack thru Iran as a 2nd prong.
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icemaverick

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Unread post17 Jun 2020, 02:51

The US suffered several thousand casualties in Iraqi counterinsurgency operations after steamrolling the Iraqi forces and occupying their territory with relative ease. Baghdad was taken in less than a month. This is an area much larger than Chechnya (~437,000 sq km vs 17,600 sq km). The US may have suffered casualties but they held the territory and were not ousted from Iraq by force. On the other hand the Russians were unable to successfully seize territory from a far weaker military force. They also resorted to leveling Grozny and they still couldn't prevail against a non-professional army. On the other hand, the US military was much more concerned about civilian casualties than the Russians were. They never resorted to carpet bombing like the Russians.

If the Russians struggled to even seize territory from a bunch of Islamist militias they would have had a much harder time against a far superior foe in the Iraqi military during the Gulf War. The Chechen soldiers were mostly equipped with Kalishikov rifles and MANPADs. They didn't have MiG-29s, Mirage F1s and SAMs. They didn't have tanks. They didn't have advanced radar installations. While Chechnya is contiguous with Russia, Iraq was a foreign country separated from the Soviet Union by Iran and Turkey. This would have made the task even harder for the Russians.
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weasel1962

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Unread post17 Jun 2020, 05:02

Terrain wise, Chechnya was wooded mountains. Lots of places to hide and conduct guerilla non-conventional warfare. Iraq, other than certain areas in the east is generally open desert. No place to hide. Ripe tank country. What the US did was to smartly allow the Iraqis to bear the brunt of the insurgency. US casualties were low, and despite the open terrain, the Iraqis' casualties weren't low. What one doesn't read in America is the Iraqi "police" and civilian body count.

The thread topic however is not about counter-insurgency ops. Its about Desert Storm.

1990/1991 comes after a 10 year war between Iraq and Iran, which is why Iran could have allowed the Soviets to attack thru Iran. Iraqi AF inventories were all Soviet (other than mirages) which meant that the Soviet knew exactly what their status were and how to handle their own missiles. The best the Iraqis had were Mig-29s. The Soviets had flankers. Iraqi IADs similarly used Soviet SAMs (other than Roland), which meant the Soviets knew the frequencies in which the missiles operate. Even tank wise, the Soviet never sold the Iraqis their latest T-80 tanks. Sure, agreed the Soviets won't be as effective as the US but invasions aren't exactly new to the Soviets. The last before 1990 was the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. 3 divisions airlifted in a short period of time.

At the time, the gulf invasion risk the Soviets posed was deemed so great, the US developed the Carter doctrine (which eventually progressed to desert storm). It also meant that if the Soviets had actually invaded Iraq in 1990/1991, the US would have intervened on the side of Iraq.
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skyward

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Unread post17 Jun 2020, 08:30

Soviet was able to implode in 1990. They just don't have the will to do Desert Storm deployment. In spite of all that, Soviet have never move that many troops before by ship or plane. The US move half a million troops for Desert Storm. Soviet have never done that before but the US have done it many times.

Whats with this idea of use Iran. First of all Iran, Iran will say no to the many troops on the ground. It like an invasion. The fact that they don't like the Saudis. The same country that help bank roll the Iraqi Iran war. It is more likely Soviet nuke Iraqi then Iran help Saudis and save Kuwait.
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weasel1962

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Unread post17 Jun 2020, 09:13

The Soviets maintained more than 600,000 troops in Eastern Europe until they were politely asked to leave in 1990/1991. "Only" 9,000+ tanks, 5,800 artillery pieces, 12,000 combat vehicles, 1,700 military aircraft, 700 helicopters in Eastern Europe.

They moved exactly that from 1990/1991.
https://www.rbth.com/history/332046-how ... its-troops
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milosh

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Unread post17 Jun 2020, 16:04

@icemaverick

ODS was classic military operation, massive clash of armor for what Soviet doctrine was build. Totally different for Afghanistan or Chechnya.
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nastle

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Unread post17 Jun 2020, 17:16

skyward wrote:Soviet was able to implode in 1990. They just don't have the will to do Desert Storm deployment. In spite of all that, Soviet have never move that many troops before by ship or plane. The US move half a million troops for Desert Storm. Soviet have never done that before but the US have done it many times.

Whats with this idea of use Iran. First of all Iran, Iran will say no to the many troops on the ground. It like an invasion. The fact that they don't like the Saudis. The same country that help bank roll the Iraqi Iran war. It is more likely Soviet nuke Iraqi then Iran help Saudis and save Kuwait.

agreed lets not forget russia and persia have fought several wars over the centuries and are not friendly neighbors
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nastle

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Unread post17 Jun 2020, 17:17

weasel1962 wrote:The Soviets maintained more than 600,000 troops in Eastern Europe until they were politely asked to leave in 1990/1991. "Only" 9,000+ tanks, 5,800 artillery pieces, 12,000 combat vehicles, 1,700 military aircraft, 700 helicopters in Eastern Europe.

They moved exactly that from 1990/1991.
https://www.rbth.com/history/332046-how ... its-troops

do you have any source that details that gigantic peacetime operation ? thanks
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nastle

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Unread post17 Jun 2020, 17:19

icemaverick wrote:If the Russians struggled to even seize territory from a bunch of Islamist militias they would have had a much harder time against a far superior foe in the Iraqi military during the Gulf War. The Chechen soldiers were mostly equipped with Kalishikov rifles and MANPADs. T.

the same argument was used against US in vietnam and today in afghanistan

classic case of apples and oranges [rather berries and melons]
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skyward

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Unread post17 Jun 2020, 20:40

weasel1962 wrote:The Soviets maintained more than 600,000 troops in Eastern Europe until they were politely asked to leave in 1990/1991. "Only" 9,000+ tanks, 5,800 artillery pieces, 12,000 combat vehicles, 1,700 military aircraft, 700 helicopters in Eastern Europe.

They moved exactly that from 1990/1991.
https://www.rbth.com/history/332046-how ... its-troops


That is totally an apple orange things. US did it in few months and Soviet take more then a year to pull troops out of Eastern Europe.
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madrat

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Unread post17 Jun 2020, 21:41

skyward wrote:
weasel1962 wrote:The Soviets maintained more than 600,000 troops in Eastern Europe until they were politely asked to leave in 1990/1991. "Only" 9,000+ tanks, 5,800 artillery pieces, 12,000 combat vehicles, 1,700 military aircraft, 700 helicopters in Eastern Europe.

They moved exactly that from 1990/1991.
https://www.rbth.com/history/332046-how ... its-troops


That is totally an apple orange things. US did it in few months and Soviet take more then a year to pull troops out of Eastern Europe.


Honestly, the Soviets opted to leave much of their equipment and allow it to get lost in the shuffle. The Soviets were a conscripted army, and much of it simply deserted to go home. They had no pay, no food, the electrical grids were broken, and by all appearances were in very poor shape before the CCCP disbanded.

The reality is that the Russians blew through resources in Afghanistan that would weaken themselves systemically. A power move on a gulf state was going nowhere fast. The mythical merchant fleet of the Soviets was not as brilliant as its been portrayed in this thread. They could not have gone through Iran. They had no border to move an army over land. They lacked resources for sustainable logistics. Going through Syria was fraught with perils of NATO intervened. It just was an untenable position.

We aren't even to the point where qualitative comparison is practical. If you can't get to the fight, there is no fight.
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