U.S. Can Attack Russia - June 2008

Moscow is publicly claiming that the West can attack it with nuclear weapons by 2015. Is this an alarmist politically driven rhetoric? Perhaps. It's alarmist propaganda meant to galvanize the people around the central authorities. It's done by authorities across the world. However, in my opinion, the rhetoric also contains a certain degree of truth. Thus, the Russian paranoia we are seeing is rooted in reality. Russia's military today, although resurgent, is overall in a very bad shape. The 1990s was disastrous for Russia not just economically, but also politically, demographically, sociologically and militarily. Majority of its land, sea and air forces consists of weaponry, equipment and hardware produced much prior to the Soviet collapse. More importantly, Russia's Soviet era nuclear missiles (the majority found within its nuclear arsenal today) are said to be in very poor condition. Some military analysts are suggesting that Russia's thousands of Soviet era ballistic missiles and nuclear warheads are in such bad shape that a large percentage of them might not even function properly if ever used.

The aforementioned is essentially why the Russian Federation is currently investing large sums of money in developing new missile systems. However, it will be many years before the new missile systems fully replace the older unreliable ones. It takes time to integrate new systems. As a result, there will be a certain time period when Russia will be, theoretically at least, vulnerable to an initial nuclear strike. This is exactly why the Kremlin has recently placed most of their spending emphasis on nuclear deterrence such as renewed strategic bomber flights, the procurement of mobile TOPOL ICBMs (SS-27, land and sea versions) and the development of Iskander (SS-26) medium range nuclear missile system. It wasn't by chance that Medvedev's first presidential visitation was to a TOPOL ICBM site to an undisclosed site in Russia.

Regardless of whether or not the US is capable of destroying Russia's nuclear deterrence in a surprise attack, Moscow is taking the situation very seriously. Even theoretical vulnerability is not accepted when the topic in question is concerning nuclear deterrence. Therefore, theoretically at least, the US military is currently capable of posing a serious danger to the Russian Federation. The proposed anti-missile defense systems in Western Europe, for example, are seen by Russian officials as very serious strategic threat for the Russian Federation. By its very nature, these anti-missile defense systems can potentially null the nuclear deterrence factor that keeps the peace between existing superpowers. With the help of better aerial/satellite surveillance and real-time military intelligence, the West can theoretically knockout Moscow's nuclear strike capability with a first strike against Russia's nuclear missile carrying submarines and land-based missiles. Surviving missiles that may get launched can then be detected and shot-down by a ring of early warning radar systems and their accompanying anti-missile defenses.

These early warning radars and missile systems are currently being positioned around the Russian Federation.

Whether or not the US is willing to take such a high risk gamble is altogether another story, especially now that the West has more on its plate than it can handle and because Russia is rapidly modernizing its armed forces and is currently on high alert. Although theoretically the danger is clearly there, nonetheless, the US today (and for the foreseeable future) is in no shape to attempt such a doomsday scenario. But, as far as military planner in the Kremlin are concerned, they are not about to take any chances.

Arevordi


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U.S. can attack Russia in 2012-2015 - Russian military analyst

June, 2008

After 2012-2015, the U.S. will be able to annihilate Russian strategic nuclear forces by a non-nuclear preemptive strike, said Konstantin Sivkov, the first vice president of the Russian Academy of Geopolitical Problems. "I declare that the likelihood of a military threat is great as never before now," Sivkov told Interfax on Saturday. Western military experts have recently started to talk about the possibility of attacking Russia and annexing its territory, Sivkov said. "Russia is supposed to be dismembered into three parts, with the Western part going to the European Union, the central part and Siberia to the U.S., and the eastern to China. This is a rough scenario," he said. Russian armed forces will be unable to successfully counter an aggression, Sivkov said. "At the present time, the conventional armed forces cannot properly perform their duties in a regional war, like the Great Patriotic War, even in theory. Even if fully deployed, their potential is limited even in local wars. The only factor that deters [the U.S.] now is the nuclear arsenal," he said.

Source: http://www.interfax.ru/e/B/politics/...issue=11975866


U.S. 'plans to neutralize Russian nuclear weapons by 2012-2015'


The U.S.-proposed European missile shield will eventually spread along Russia's borders and may neutralize Russia's nuclear potential by 2012-2015, a Russian political analyst said on Wednesday. Commenting on reports that the United States and Lithuania were formally discussing deploying elements of the U.S. missile shield in the ex-Soviet Baltic state should Warsaw reject Washington's plans to station 10 interceptor missiles in Poland, Leonid Ivashov, the head of the Moscow-based Academy of Geopolitical Sciences, said: "We should expect that elements of a U.S. missile shield will be placed not only in Lithuania, but also in all territories bordering Russia and controlled by NATO." So far, the Czech Republic has agreed to host an early-warning radar on its territory. Poland has taken a tough stance in missile talks with the U.S., demanding that Washington upgrade its air defense systems in return. Ivashov said the main purpose of the U.S. global missile shield was to neutralize Russia's nuclear potential by 2012-2015 and that NATO eastward expansion was part of this plan. He said Ukraine's and Georgia's possible accession to NATO would have dire consequences for Russia's defense capability. "There is no doubt that elements of the U.S. missile shield will be placed in Georgia and Ukraine immediately after they join NATO," the analyst said, adding that Ukraine already had radars [in Mukachevo and Sevastopol] that may be used against Russia. "The U.S. wants to create an impenetrable shield capable of intercepting and destroying Russian nuclear missiles on launch pads, in the initial trajectory, in orbit and on the final trajectory," he said. Ivashov criticized the Russian leadership for "wasting time in empty rhetoric with the West," rather than taking concrete steps to counter the looming threat. He suggested that Russia should threaten to sever all relations with NATO if the U.S. missile shield is eventually placed in Europe. "Russia must also warn the European countries that...in case of a potential military confrontation...capitals, large cities, industrial and communications centers of the countries hosting elements of the U.S. missile shield will inevitably become the primary targets of [Russian] nuclear strikes."

Source: http://en.rian.ru/russia/20080618/111155009.html


 

In related news:



Gates' reference to Russia's nuclear capabilities alarming

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said in his address to officers at Langley Air Force Base in Virginia that Russia was focused on strengthening its nuclear capabilities rather than building up its regular armed forces, which makes maintaining the U.S. nuclear arsenal increasingly important. The two nuclear superpowers may be building up their nuclear capabilities, but no reasonable person can imagine using them. On the other hand, more armed conflicts are taking place in the world every year, which means the world needs more conventional arms, or better still, precision weapons with effects comparable to those of nuclear weapons.

As it draws attention to a Russian nuclear threat, the United States has accelerated its transition to conventional armed forces, lessening its dependence on its nuclear arsenal. Acting Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security, John C. Rood, said as much in late May. Why is Gates expressing this concern about Russia's nuclear strategy? Does he know more than we do? And, is Russia really preparing to make a breakthrough in the sphere of conventional weapons? According to Reuters, "Moscow has boosted military spending as part of an effort to make Russia more assertive on the world stage after the chaos of the post-Soviet period. It has also tried to reform its military to create a more professional, well-equipped and mobile army. But that reform has been slow, some critics say."

"Russia is really not investing very much in their conventional forces. It's really clear and for a whole bunch of reasons, demographics and everything else," Gates told reporters after his visit to Langley. It seems to me the Americans are painting the situation in Russia's defense sphere all black. Colonel General Leonid Ivashov, president of the Russian Academy of Geopolitical Problems, commenting on Russia's triad of strategic nuclear weapons, including ground-based missiles, submarines and bombers said, "We are really worried by what is happening. The mobile Topol-M missile systems are vulnerable to conventional strikes; their mobility is no longer a guarantee of concealment or protection. Rather, they have become a deterrence factor only toward the east." "The airborne component of the nuclear triad is degenerating, despite promising projects underway in design bureaus. The state defense contracts do not stipulate the creation of modern strategic cruise missiles," the general said. "The situation in the naval section is also dramatic; there are no clear ways out of this dead-end."

Ivashov was clearly referring to the Bulava ballistic missile, which is to be produced for the Russian armed forces this year although the missile needs further development. Gates should be happy that even Russian generals, who cannot be suspected of love for the United States, are openly talking about the weakness of Russia's nuclear capability. In early June, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said deadlines for the creation of new weapons for the army and navy should be streamlined. "We must make financial decisions to accelerate the completion of promising R&D projects already launched. We must restore order with deadlines for their implementation," Vladimir Putin told a June 10th meeting devoted to Defense Ministry orders due in 2009-2011. The demand to "restore order" definitely means that there is a lack of order in the development of new weapons.

In late March, Sergei Ivanov, then first deputy prime minister, told arms producers in Tula, "Many defense enterprises are not prepared for serial production of modern high-tech weapons that are in high demand on the global market." He was referring to problems with batch production of the S-400 and Pantsir-S1 air defense missile systems, which can repel precision offensive weapons and form the core of the country's aerospace defense command. The United States is working to create a global aerospace defense system whereas Russia has very few such weapons on combat duty, and all of them were created decades ago. The opinions expressed in this article are the author's and do not necessarily represent those of RIA Novosti.

Source: http://en.rian.ru/analysis/20080617/110933648.html

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Arevordi will be taking a sabbatical to tend to personal matters. New blog commentaries will henceforth be posted on an irregular basis. The comments board however will continue to be moderated on a regular basis.

The last 20 years or so has also helped me see Russia as the last front against scourges of Westernization, Globalism, American expansionism, Zionism, Islamic extremism and pan-Turkism. I have also come to see Russia as the last hope humanity has for the preservation of classical western civilization, Apostolic Christianity and the traditional nation-state. This compelled me to create this blog in 2010. Immediately, this blog became one of the very few voices in the vastness of cyberia that dared to preach about the dangers of Globalism and the Anglo-American-Jewish alliance, and the only voice preaching the strategic importance of Armenia remaining within Russia's orbit. From about 2010 to 2015 I did monthly, at times weekly, commentaries about Russian-Armenian relations and Eurasian geopolitics in general. It was very difficult for me because I had no assistance from anywhere. The time I put into this blog therefore came at the expense of work and family. But a powerful feeling inside urged me to keep going; and I did. When Armenia joined the EEU and integrated into Russia's military structures a couple of years ago I finally felt a deep sense of relaxation, as if a very heavy burden was lifted off my back. And when Prime Minister Karen Karapetyan reemerged in Armenian politics, I finally felt that my personal mission was accomplished. I therefore felt I could take a step back as I really needed the rest.

Simply put: I have lived to see the institutionalization of Russian-Armenian alliance. Also, I feel more confident now that Armenians are collectively recognizing the strategic importance of Armenia's ties with Russia. Moreover, I feel satisfied knowing that, at least on a subatomic level, I had a hand in the outcome. As a result, I feel a strong sense of mission accomplished. I therefore no longer have the internal urge to continue as in the past. In other words, the motivational force that had propelled me in previous years has been gradually dissipating because I feel that this blog has lived to see the realization of its stated goal.

Going forward, I do not want to write merely for the sake of writing. Also, I do not want to say anything if I have nothing important to say. I feel like I have said everything I needed to say. Henceforth, I will post seasonal commentaries about topics I find important. I will however moderate the blog's comments section on a regular basis; ultimately because I'm interested in what readers of this blog have to say and also because it's through readers here that I am at times made aware of interesting developments. To limit clutter in the comments section, I kindly ask all participants of this blog to please keep comments coherent and strictly relevant to the featured topic of discussion. Moreover, please realize that when there are several anonymous visitors posting comments simultaneously, it becomes very confusing (not to mention extremely annoying) trying to figure out who is who and who said what. If you are here to engage in conversation, make an observation, express an idea or just attack me, I ask you to at least use a moniker to identify yourself.

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