Russia forces in a war for the Baltics.

Discuss air warfare, doctrine, air forces, historic campaigns, etc.
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jessmo112

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Unread post23 Nov 2021, 19:07

With the recent Russian military build up on the Ukrainian border, people have begin to analyze Russian capabilities.
A very good article was posted today discussing Russian logistics challenges out side of 90 miles of the Russian frontier.


" Herein lies the dilemma. Overwhelming local forces in the Baltics before NATO troops arrive does not give Russia time to establish railheads, forcing reliance on trucks. At 130 miles, they can only do one trip a day, generating a truck shortage. Russian planners could commit fewer maneuver forces and risk failing to overwhelm defenders. Alternatively, they could take a logistics pause for two to three days and give the Baltic states time to mobilize and NATO’s Very High Readiness Joint Task Force time to arrive

"Feeding the Bear: A Closer Look at Russian Army Logistics and the Fait Accompli - War on the Rocks" https://warontherocks.com/2021/11/feedi ... logistics/

What are your opinions on this from an airpower perspective?

1. Can the Russians just keep their armies supplied via air bridge? Can enough be air dropped?

2. Can the Russians secure Nato or Ukrainian Air fields and air transport the supplies?

3. Can the Russians keep allied forces suppressed by scuds tac-air and islander? Enough to resupply?
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hythelday

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Unread post23 Nov 2021, 21:42

This isn't a very good article at all, because it either oversimplifies the problem, makes some rather strange assumptions as well as contradicts itself in many places. It is however a breath of fresh air in a sense that it approaches the problem from a very important logistical angle rather than the usual "S-400 rings of death" dullness.

The idea that Russia could airdrop more supplies than it could ferry in using trucks is rather outlandish too.
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madrat

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Unread post24 Nov 2021, 01:36

Ratniks and Spetnaz have already been counteracted by Ukrainian irregulars.

How exactly is Russia supposed to overwhelm Ukraine?
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weasel1962

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Unread post24 Nov 2021, 03:34

This thread is confusing. The "war in the rocks" article is talking mainly about the possibility of a blitzkrieg into Poland with a sidetrack on a baltics occupation per the Rand study on a baltics campaign
Link to Rand study on Baltics campaign: https://www.rand.org/pubs/research_reports/RR1253.html

This thread is conflating the issue with talk of an invasion of Ukraine but titling the thread as a war in the Baltics? Different region.

Then someone else starts talking about an air bridge? Not sure why an air bridge is required in any scenario whether Baltics, Poland or Ukraine.

and if anyone bothers to read and understand the "war in the rocks" article, logistics within Russia isn't an issue. So an Iskander brigade which has a 500km range wouldn't need to go outside of Russia to target the Baltics, Poland or Ukraine.

What exactly is the scenario again?
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element1loop

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Unread post24 Nov 2021, 04:56

weasel1962 wrote: What exactly is the scenario again?


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jessmo112

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Unread post24 Nov 2021, 15:19

weasel1962 wrote:This thread is confusing. The "war in the rocks" article is talking mainly about the possibility of a blitzkrieg into Poland with a sidetrack on a baltics occupation per the Rand study on a baltics campaign
Link to Rand study on Baltics campaign: https://www.rand.org/pubs/research_reports/RR1253.html

This thread is conflating the issue with talk of an invasion of Ukraine but titling the thread as a war in the Baltics? Different region.

Then someone else starts talking about an air bridge? Not sure why an air bridge is required in any scenario whether Baltics, Poland or Ukraine.

and if anyone bothers to read and understand the "war in the rocks" article, logistics within Russia isn't an issue. So an Iskander brigade which has a 500km range wouldn't need to go outside of Russia to target the Baltics, Poland or Ukraine.

What exactly is the scenario again?


Ok let's go slow.

1. There has been alot of talk about a Russian invasion of the Baltics over the last year or so Rand even put out a study awhile back.

2. The build-up outside of Ukraine is very similar to what Russia would need to do to secure the baltics, IE a large build up of forces with supply dumps aplenty. Yes we are aware that Ukraine and Poland are two different places.
Are you still with us.

3. The article pours cold water on the Russian threat to the Baltics because.

A. The way the Russians fight relies heavily on the Russian rail system for resupply. Russian Rail systems are a different size than western rail sizes. Therefore we conclude that the Russians can only push so far into NATO held territory because of a logistics bottle-neck.
B.Trucks are not sufficient, and after some thought neither is an air bridge.

We Therefore conclude that the Russian war machine is specialized to fight on Russian turf, and would be crushed by NATO trying to fight deep in Natos turf.

IMHO the article isn't click bait its one of the 1st articles that actually tries to address Russian strengths and weaknesses.
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hythelday

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Unread post24 Nov 2021, 16:21

The article is a mess almost from start to finish, and RAND wargame from seven years ago is also far from stellar.

Jessmo, you now seem to concede that "air bridge" isn't viable, so I guess that answers your question. I am curious as to why you changed your mind between two posts.
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weasel1962

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Unread post24 Nov 2021, 16:51

That would explain why the Russians could never take Crimea then...but wait...

The issue is not whether the Russians can take the Baltics but why they would want to trigger a war with NATO. Militarily, Russia will always be able to put more troops in the field. When the US army sent a bct into the Baltics, the russkis sent a division into Kaliningrad. It doesn't make sense to have a large permanent force stationed there even though that's what the Baltic States want. The vulnerability of the suwalki gap makes it an ultimately a less defensible position. Poland is a different story.

Seriously, which is more cost effective. A US bct deployed thousands of miles from home base or a European brigade?

Imho, the solution is economics, not military. Poland alone is half of Russia's gdp and 1/3 it's population. The rest of Europe is far larger than Russia. They don't need the US but it's alway smarter to get US to foot the bill. The US strangely seems happy to do so whilst Europe is happily buying Russian gas. That should be the scenario.

China is enough justification for a large defense budget. US generals are being greedy for more. It's about time the US should let the Europeans take responsibility for a European problem.
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jessmo112

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Unread post26 Nov 2021, 01:58

If you know history this is a familiar scenario.
The reason than Russia won't take the Baltics is because of the U.S.. Europe couldn't defend itself during ww1 or 2.
What makes you think that they would pit up a fight without us? And BTW how many tactical fighters does Germany have in flying condition right now?
Didn't they run drills with wooden rifles during Afghanistan? And this will stand against the Russian bear.
I'm about to marry a European woman soon, and trust me they are different from Americans. They don't have the Can do spirit. They don't work as hard as we do. They don't have any cowboy in them. Maybe a few countries in Eastern Europe. But no offense the French Germans, Dutch, ect ect. Are soft as butter. That's my opinion.
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weasel1962

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Unread post26 Nov 2021, 03:28

Chicken and egg. The reason Europe can't defend itself is because its relying on a US crutch. Remove the crutch and Europe will naturally increase its defense expenditures.

Not saying that the US should pull out entirely. Just that it doesn't have to be in the forefront. Why can't 4 Polish divisions hold out long enough for a "reforger" reinforcement? The rest of NATO (excl US) won't sit idle either. The Germans are not going to let the Russians sit on their border. Better to have the battlefield in Poland than Germany.

Russia is a shadow of its former self. At full strength its air force comprises only ~700+ legacy fighters. Why wouldn't NATO excluding US put up a fight with 7 European countries (Norway, UK, Italy, Natherlands, Belgium, Denmark and Poland) operating hundreds of F-35s? F-35s can't fight? I'm not even counting NAtO F-16s, Typhoons, Gripens or Rafales. Its the same at the land forces military balance.

No need to hype the Russian threat. I think let Europe be focused on Russia and let the US focus on the Pacific.
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hythelday

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Unread post26 Nov 2021, 06:06

jessmo112 wrote:If you know history this is a familiar scenario.

So either Russia can't do sh*t because they can't drive trucks more than 90 miles, OR Russia can invade half the Europe because it's old tradition of theirs. Make up your mind already.

jessmo112 wrote:The reason than Russia won't take the Baltics is because of the U.S.


And I thought it's because Russia can't drive trucks far enough?


jessmo112 wrote:Europe couldn't defend itself during ww1 or 2.
What makes you think that they would pit up a fight without us?

Who again were fighting in Europe in WW1 and WW2? United Europeans versus *checks notes* ah yes, aliens.

jessmo112 wrote:And BTW how many tactical fighters does Germany have in flying condition right now?
Didn't they run drills with wooden rifles during Afghanistan?


That is exactly the point. Broomhandle guns and grounded fighters are artificially created nerf, result of a deliberate policy.

jessmo112 wrote: trust me they are different from Americans. They don't have the Can do spirit. They don't work as hard as we do. They don't have any cowboy in them.


From a well respected military expert Jessmo-"China will lose a war because they have small johnsons"-112 comes they next golden rule of combat: one has to wear a Stetson 10 gallon hat to win a war.
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jessmo112

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Unread post26 Nov 2021, 19:32

hythelday wrote:
jessmo112 wrote:If you know history this is a familiar scenario.

So either Russia can't do sh*t because they can't drive trucks more than 90 miles, OR Russia can invade half the Europe because it's old tradition of theirs. Make up your mind already.

jessmo112 wrote:The reason than Russia won't take the Baltics is because of the U.S.


And I thought it's because Russia can't drive trucks far enough?


jessmo112 wrote:Europe couldn't defend itself during ww1 or 2.
What makes you think that they would pit up a fight without us?

Who again were fighting in Europe in WW1 and WW2? United Europeans versus *checks notes* ah yes, aliens.

jessmo112 wrote:And BTW how many tactical fighters does Germany have in flying condition right now?
Didn't they run drills with wooden rifles during Afghanistan?


That is exactly the point. Broomhandle guns and grounded fighters are artificially created nerf, result of a deliberate policy.

jessmo112 wrote: trust me they are different from Americans. They don't have the Can do spirit. They don't work as hard as we do. They don't have any cowboy in them.


From a well respected military expert Jessmo-"China will lose a war because they have small johnsons"-112 comes they next golden rule of combat: one has to wear a Stetson 10 gallon hat to win a war.


I think your missing all of my points here. I can't tell if your being wilfully ignorant. Or you just don't know.

1. My point is that Russia has limits.

2. It's not one or the other most European countries don't even want to fund militaries let alone fight. At the same time Russia is greatly diminished.

3 it has been u.s boots on the ground fighting various forms of Tyranny for well over 100 years now. And every time in every generation the argument is made to let Europe fight its own battles. Unfortunately we are sucked back into Europe every time. Do you want to guess what the headlines and opinions were in America pre pearl Harbor.

4. I don't doubt that Europe has the manpower or the kit to fight. I doubt thier resolve to fight.

5. Who ever Mentioned Crimea. I doubt that Latvia Estonia and Poland will be as easy as Crimea .
For one the Ukrainian AF is no where near as sophisticated as NATO.

The article correctly points out that against a U.S. backed Nato coalition the Russians are at a disadvantage because of Russian military doctrine and its effects on logistics.. It correctly points out Russian aversion to house to house urban war, and points out that the Russian military likes to mass indirect fires ( rockets and artillery). If they didn't want to clear out a handful of Chechen rebels what makes you think they are going to face western special forces in the streets of Warsaw.?
They will mass artillery and rockets. This is the Russian way and it has Consequences.
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ricnunes

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Unread post26 Nov 2021, 21:05

hythelday wrote:
jessmo112 wrote:Europe couldn't defend itself during ww1 or 2.
What makes you think that they would pit up a fight without us?

Who again were fighting in Europe in WW1 and WW2? United Europeans versus *checks notes* ah yes, aliens.



:lmao: :lmao: :lmao:


P.S. - And again the Brits are forgotten. BTW, if it weren't for them (British) resisting against the Germans in WWII then the Americans would never be able to take the fight well into Europe in this same war!
“Active stealth” is what the ignorant nay sayers call ECM and pretend like it’s new.
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jessmo112

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Unread post26 Nov 2021, 23:49

ricnunes wrote:
hythelday wrote:
jessmo112 wrote:Europe couldn't defend itself during ww1 or 2.
What makes you think that they would pit up a fight without us?

Who again were fighting in Europe in WW1 and WW2? United Europeans versus *checks notes* ah yes, aliens.



:lmao: :lmao: :lmao:


P.S. - And again the Brits are forgotten. BTW, if it weren't for them (British) resisting against the Germans in WWII then the Americans would never be able to take the fight well into Europe in this same war!


I'll give Britain credit, for being the country that would put up a solid fight. They definitely are more capable than Germany when it comes to thec Military and Readiness.
Thier generals during WW2 seemed to be a cutting above the rest in Europe. I seem to remember British general Monty being remembered in the history books, But I cannot remember any French, Dutch, or Belgian generals for their battlefield accomplishments. There is Charles De Gaul but his army was defeated. The British have Monty and El Alamein The Americans had Mac. Even the Germans had Rommel. I think it says something about your country's military when they have proud generals who had successful campaigns.

Anyway we are getting way off. The Russians like to use rockets, why have a heavy impact on logistics. These are the facts.
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milosh

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Unread post27 Nov 2021, 09:43

Brits evacuated from from France so they were beaten too. Only reason why Brits stay in fight was poor german air tactic which didnt make invasion of UK possible. If German panzers had land connection with UK, UK would fall as others europian countries.
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