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SOVIET MILITARY POWER 2009
Ever since Soviet General Secretary Gorbachev resigned on April 2 1992 and was replaced by Gennady Ivanovich Yanayev there has been an emphasis on reforming and reclaiming within all aspects of Soviet life in the past 17 years. As stated in the 1994 version of this document the main focus on reform was to revamp the failing Eastern Bloc economy. The new general secretary Yanayev was hailed a genius by the party elite for his insight into the economic issues, a lack of diversity in products being sold and a lack of products in general, (product meaning any consumer goods.) As he stated, " our people can buy a lamp in Leningrad that is the same in Warsaw or Berlin, their is no need to improve or grow in such conditions, for this we shall introduce organized competition within our industries to inspire those in charge to do great deeds of labor, least they forget they are the working intellectual." General Secretary Yanayev also put a hold on all military spending for five years and ordered new " product" designs and formulas within the economic structure, the new five-year plans as he called them. General Secretary Yanayev showed he had no regrets using the military might of the Warsaw Pact, however weak, to get his way with "intervention" in Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia. Soviet intervention to Yugoslavia was critical because it was the last Non-satellite Eastern Bloc Nation to fall into Soviet hands. Prior to the invasion Yugoslavia was Titoist not Marxist-Leninist. Because the Eastern Bloc economies have fully recovered by 2004 and The New Soviet Primer Vladimir Putin and likely successor to Yanayev refocused on the falling military structure within the Soviet Union which brings us to this versions main focus, the new gear, structure, and doctrine of the Warsaw pact forces.
CH1 the current strategic situation. It is clear that the USSR is not pleased with the American presence in Afghanistan and the pressure President Bush is putting on Iraq. Probably the greatest thaw in the cold war came after Al Qaeda and their allies attacked the U.S. The Afghani frontier is fast becoming one of the coldest fronts primarily due to the fact that well armed American and Coalition troops are near and on the Afghan-Soviet border. Soviet recon-teams regularly cross the border and there have been several shoot downs of Soviet drones in the past year, up by 20%. Another concern is the very close relations between the Soviet Union and India. The USSR and India have developed a number of pieces of hardware together most notably the Su-30MKI. The Republic of India has also purchased a large number of T-90s from the USSR. The Soviets prefer to arm Iraq over Iran despite Iran’s far more powerful military and the fact that Iran openly opposes the U.S. and western activities in their region. The clear reason is that Iraq is much more secular and openly socialist than Iran which is Islamist and has no real position on economic matters. Two reports have come out one in 2004 and the other 2008 that the USSR is supplying Iraq with uranium and technical aid to create a nuclear program but the CIA can not confirm these reports due to the high amount of security provided by the Republican Guard and KGB. The Soviets have clearly aided and financed the Lebanese Communist Party and PLO above other pro Soviet groups due to their proximity to Israel and their ability to counter Islamic radical groups in the area. In the case of the PLO bring a more moderate message. The main frontier of the cold war has changed from south east Asia, Korea, and Europe to the Middle East. Note (This section printed before 4/4/09 Korean missile test, This test listed as high priority by the CIA.)
CH2 CH2s1 The new Soviet land doctrine. Among the main changes of the Warsaw Pact forces doctrine is the shrinking of the largest maneuver element from the division to the Brigade. There have been many claims that the Soviet military may be trying to westernize its structure. The Soviets may have shifted their maneuver doctrine but this is probably a reaction to changing western doctrines. CH2s2 A recent report by the CIA and JARIC(MI4) appear to shed light that the Soviets are sending recon teams across the border at an increasing rate. These appear to be ether local troops who know local languages and customs or Spetsnaz teams. Their purpose is most likely to recon NATO activity and monitor the local governments activities as well. This comes as a surprise after two NATO air strikes have killed members of these teams due to the fact that the were believed to be Taliban. The use of special forces has always been an integral part of Soviet military thinking but given the War on Terror happening on the Afghani-Soviet border and the unlikelihood of a full scale conventional war breaking out the USSR will keep developing its special forces to counter terrorism and threaten the West. A major change in Soviet thinking is the remphasis on artiliary and a focus on the quality of tank rather than quanity.The furture face of the Soviet tank force is the T-90 MTB and T-84 MTB with a large number of T-80s and T-72s. Many of the older T-72 have been passed on the Warsaw Pact nations replacing their T-54/55s.
CH3 The Soviet Nuclear Threat. The main changes in Soviet Nuclear doctrine have been primarily defensive. A major increase in what is known here as "civil defense" training for the population of the Soviet Union has baffled many western observers due to the fact that the Soviet government has never launched a campaign for "civil defense" like this. Most analysts point to the increase of civil defense training in the 1980s as a sign that this many be a political move rather than a practical one , (the 1980s is when soviet power was quickly weakening), in order in increase fear about the west. Considering the likelihood that a nuclear conflict would be virtually unserviceable this very well may be the case. The Soviet high command has shown interest in increasing the mobility of their nuclear arsenal. It is believed that four new ICBM Trains have been put into service and that hundreds of warheads have been mounted on Topol-M mobile ICBM's , these were seen at the 2008 Victory Day parade. There are rumours that the Soviet Union is seeking to build a stealth cruise missile believed to to code named вітер(wind). This would allow for a possible nuclear surprise attack. This matter is very serious to the CIA. Adhering to the Non-proliferation Treaty the Soviet Union has built no new nuclear warheads. The USSR seems to be trying to gain in area it has fallen behind, bombers, this would be the reason the Soviets are seeking to build up their bomber force many Tupolev Tu-160 and Tupolev Tu-22Ms.
CH4 The Soviet Navy Today.
As it has primarily been during the cold war the main focus of the Red Navy has been to prevent a seaborne nuclear strike on the Soviet Union and her allies. The Soviet high command has felt that MAD is the best way to prevent attack and has shown this by building far more ballistic missile subs than attack submarines. The Project 955 Borei is the latest version of the growing Soviet nuclear armed submarine fleet. The Soviets have also shown an increase in their interest in building carriers a clear that a new "combined arms sea assault" for land specialists theory has become the new focus for the Red Navy.
Sources Global Security.org CIA World fact book.