War is Less About Technology; More About Expert Analysis

When you write under a dictatorship, not least one at war, which those who lived in the Soviet Union are well practised at doing, you have to make any criticism in muted and indirect form. Turning to history is to be recommended.

At a time when Putin is openly threatening military-industrial enterprises with direct state intervention and confiscation of profits to ensure that new weapons appear on time for the battlefield in Ukraine, an article appears emphasising the human factor: better intelligence may be more important than better weapons.

That is the message from three old hands in anti-missile air defence now retired from active service but still at the blackboard for the benefit of the next generation. On Thursdays Nezavisimaya gazeta contains a supplement, the Nezavisimoe voennoe obozrenie, which takes a broad look at the battlefield from the current standpoint. Just the other day it appeared with an interesting article on “the factor of surprise in contemporary geopolitical and geostrategic conditions”.

It was written ostensibly as a sober response to a less than level headed article that appeared on the 20 January in the same supplement. That piece refers in exaggerated terms to some kind of general attack on Russia by the United States following the “proxy war” in Ukraine, and compares the situation with the Soviet Union’s lack of preparedness in June 1941. The response from the three authors avoids any direct reference to the “proxy war” leading to a general war, and implicitly decries the tub-thumping boasts about “super” missiles which filled the front pages of Russian military publications much of last year.

The conclusion of the three veterans runs as folllows:

“It is advisable for the military-political leadership of the state to spend less time advertising achievements in the development and mastery of the latest weapons, and to care more about misleading the enemy. Commanders and staffs of the Armed Forces at all levels should master the art of organizing surprise moves against the enemy in order to repel a sudden attack on its part.”

Read from the Ukrainian side of the battlefield, it suggests that the Russians have to confront their failure in the art of war rather than in seeking salvation in better equipment.

Nezavisimoe voennoe obozrenie:

02.03.2023 18:37:00

Разведка доложила – анализ подкачал

Версия для печати

Обсудить на форуме

Фактор внезапности в современных геополитических и геостратегических условиях

 Юрий Подгорных 

 Валентин Дыбов  

 Максим Колодько 

20.01.2023 00:10:00

Фактор внезапности вчера и сегодня

Версия для печати

Обсудить на форуме

Как не прозевать начало агрессии

 Александр Бартош