Jump to content


Photo

Cold War, The Reimagined Series


  • Please log in to reply
5812 replies to this topic

#1 BansheeOne

BansheeOne

    Bullshit filter overload, venting into civility charger

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12,813 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 08 March 2014 - 0435 AM

I thought about how it would look if NATO would return to a protracted standoff with Russia and its influence sphere some time ago already. However, since the Ukrainian festivities kicked off, I've come to realize that this wouldn't be your daddy's Cold War - with conscription largely gone and the budgetal strains of modern systems, there are just not enough troops around on either side to keep the same strategic posture covering all of a demarcation line running the length of Europe. Though obviously things might change again, the technology-manpower-cost triangle is not conductive to a return of the mass armies for most actors.

 

According to globalsecurity.org, Russia has the following ground combat formations:

 

 

Western Military District (Moscow)

 

- 1 x Motorized Brigade

- 2 x Spetsnaz Brigade

- 1 x MLRS Brigade

- 1 x Missile Brigade

- 3 x Air Defense Brigade

- 2 x Engineer Regiment

 

6th Army (Agalatovo)

- 2 x Motorized Brigade

- 1 x Artillery Brigade

- 1 x Missile Brigade

- 1 x Air Defense Brigade

- 1 x Engineer Regiment

 

20th Army (Mulino)

- 2 x Motorized Brigade

- 2 x Tank Brigade

- 1 x Artillery Brigade

- 1 x Missile Brigade

 

 

Southern Military District (Rostov)

 

- 2 x Motorized Brigade (Armenia)

- 1 x Air Defense Regiment (Armenia)

 

49th Army (Stavropol)

- 1 x Motorized Brigade

- 3 x Motorized Brigade (Mountain)

- 1 x Commando Brigade (Light)

- 2 x Spetsnaz Brigade

- 1 x Artillery Brigade

- 1 x MLRS Brigade

- 1 x Missile Brigade

 

58th Army (Vladikavkaz)

- 6 x Motorized Brigade

- 1 x Reconnaissance Brigade

- 1 x Air Defense Brigade

 

 

Central Military District (Ekaterinburg)

 

2nd Army (Samara)

- 1 x Missile Brigade

- 1 x Air Defense Brigade

 

41st Army (Novosibirsk)

- 8 x Motorized Brigade (one in Tajikistan)

- 1 x Tank Brigade

- 2 x Spetsnaz Brigade

- 2 x Artillery Brigade

- 1 x Missile Brigade

- 2 x Air Defense Brigade

 

 

Eastern Military District (Khabarovsk)

 

5th Army (Primorie)

[...]

 

29th Army (Chita)

[...]

 

35th Army (Belogorsk)

[...]

 

36th Army (Ulan Ude)

[...]

 

 

In the two districts bordering NATO or disputed territory like Ukraine, we thus have 17 motorized brigades of this general type, per Wiki (no idea if and how the "mountain" brigades differ:

 

702px-Russian_Ground_Forces_-_Motor_Rifl

 

http://en.wikipedia....r_Rifle_Brigade

 

Plus two tank (which I guess have a three tank/one motor rifle battalion mix) and six Spetsnaz/Commando/reconnaissance brigades as maneuver elements. Bringing up Central District units would add another eight motorized, one tank and two Spetsnaz brigades. I'm disregarding the Eastern District here, but there are the

 

 

Airborne Troops (Moscow)

 

- 2 x Air Assault Division

- 2 x Airborne Division

- 1 x Airborne Brigade

- 1 x Spetsnaz Regiment

 

800px-Russian_Airborne_Forces.png

 

http://en.wikipedia....Airborne_Troops

 

and the Naval Infantry with one brigade in each of the Northern, Baltic, Black Sea and Pacific Fleet, the composition of which we already discussed on the Ukraine thread, plus some separate battalions.

 

http://en.wikipedia....fantry_(Russia)

 

It's still a sizeable force, much larger than any other European nation's, and particularly heavy on artillery which somehow seems to have gone out of fashion in the West with all those bughunts in sandy places. However, even including the Central District it's less than the old Western Group of Forces and spread over a far larger area further east, and with separate commitments in the south. My first take is that even NATO's "first" and "second" line nations in Eastern and Central Europe could have a matching quantity of troops on their eastern border to counter a possible threat without exerting themselves (though realistically you probably would have to include the Belorussian forces in the enemy camp). I have a rough outline for a possible organization, but need to take a closer look at type and quality of national formations.


  • 0

#2 Soren Ras

Soren Ras

    Molehill Mountaineer

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 3,170 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Denmark
  • Interests:This Theater of the Absurd

Posted 09 March 2014 - 0855 AM

As long as Russia just gets that corridor to Kaliningrad, there'll be no more trouble at all... :ninja:

 

--
Soren


  • 0

#3 BansheeOne

BansheeOne

    Bullshit filter overload, venting into civility charger

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12,813 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 09 March 2014 - 0926 AM

I've been working on this, but as usual wanted too much to soon and got bogged down in the details of which battalion with what equipment would be where. The higher echelons are much clearer. Assumptions:

 

- There will be no new NATO members. Finland is free to join now, but as they haven't done so over the last 20 years, they may feel they're besser off alone than with the alliance obligations that come with a membership. Sweden has shown even less aspirations, as has Austria. Ukraine won't get in with open territorial disputes with Russia, as will Georgia or other former Soviet states.

 

- There will be no increase in troops or equipment other than what is currently planned (including upgrades of existing systems), though decisions to get rid of "outfashioned" non-expeditionary heavy stuff may be revised and existing units may be shuffled around to get formations better suited to conventional warfare. Strained budgets still rule.

 

- NATO members on the eastern border will primarily task their troops to protect their own soil. "Second line" nations may deploy some forces forward, but not to the extent of the Netherlands or Belgium who had basically all of their active land components based in Germany during the Cold War; additional global obligations are unlikely to reduce to the levels of that period again, though they will be given less priority.

 

- Southern members will stick to the traditional mission of securing the Mediterranean flank, though with borders moved to the Black Sea, this is a much less likely threat now. There will be no major relocation of forces from the US and Canada to Europe.

 

The most basic divide could be between JFC Brunssum dealing with the northeast from Norway to the Black Sea, and JFC Naples with the southern flank including Turkey and the Black Sea itself. Below Brunssum, existing corps take over sectors, reverting from their prevalent role of expeditionary HQs today. In fact I envision ARRC becoming responsible for Norway, since that country has a small "front" and is not the most likely target for Russian expansionism, therefore not needed to be heavily garrisoned rather than reinforced in crisis. NOR Brigade Nord could be quickly backed up by UK 3 Commando Brigade (including a NL Korps Mariniers battalion group) per their old Cold War mission, and UK 16 Air Assault Brigade. If that's not enough, I see that under Army 2020 UK 3 Division becomes the designated reaction force with three armoured infantry brigades (plus, I guess, some armoured field artillery regiments and other attachments).

 

Multinational Corps Northeast could take over the Baltic states; it's there I'm currently stuck due to overorganizing peace and wartime assignments for the minuscule local forces. The corps has GER 1st Panzer, POL 12th Mechanized and Danish Division assigned today (though the Danes seem to have plans to switch to ARRC); the current German plans for alliance support amount to a division command capable of taking in partner forces, with two brigades, division troops and a strong mixed helicopter force (probably one Tiger and NH 90 squadron each) as national elements. If we're actually basing them forward, 1st Panzer's current brigades would need some swapping of units though since as our primary reaction force, unlike the British plans they have gotten more light infantry rather than armor battalions, which is exactly what is not needed there. They also have currently just one of the grand total of four artillery battalions we have left.

 

Danish Division is a HQ in peacetime only, and they have just two brigades total; I guess one could round out 1st Panzer in peacetime, and DANDIV would only fully deploy in crisis (grand total of Danish artillery: one firing battalion). Their third brigade could be Lithuanian "Iron Wolf" with whom I understand they have an association agreement. This is the only real active mechanized brigade in the Baltic states; they could be under POL 12th Mechanized in peacetime though since they're immediate neighbors, so the Poles would only need to deploy two brigades, too (which they might also want to swap around a bit to have their Leopard 2-equipped units work with the Germans and Danes for logistical ease). That would leave them eight in two divisions under POL 2nd Mechanized Corps to take care of their own border, possibly reinforced by GER 10th Panzer Division in crisis. The Latvians and Estonians are very mobilization-dependent and have only two and one active infantry battalions respectively in peacetime (which could also attach to the Germans and Poles), but will form four brigades each in wartime.

 

South of Poland, I'm not sure yet. The Romanians can also form their own corps of three divisions, but I'm a bit worried that they are driving, in the end, merely much-updated T-55s for MBTs. In the center, the Hungarians and Slovaks have two brigades each with another two Czech ones in the rear; the Bulgarians have also two behind the Romanians, all of the latter using various modernized T-72 variants as armor. I thought the Italians and/or Greek might want to move some Ariete/Leopard 2-equipped brigades forward, though they're strictly speaking on the southern rather than the eastern flank. The French have also traditional good relations with the Romanians, but only two heavy armor brigades left; I see them more as bringing up their wheeled armor as quick reinforcements in crisis, along with airborne forces (this includes the future joint Dutch-German air assault division and US 173rd Airborne Brigade).

 

The only other US maneuver elements left in Europe are of course 2nd Stryker Cavalry Regiment and 12th Combat Aviation Brigade. Maybe they could back up the center, though I would like that better if those M1s recently redeployed to Germany for training purposes would be in actual operative use.


  • 0

#4 wendist

wendist

    Crew

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 547 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Skåne,Sweden

Posted 09 March 2014 - 1750 PM

I idly wonder what kind of effect it might have on Sweden. True at the moment they have no alliance affiliations (than being in the EU) but whereas the previous Cold war fixated upon the IGB, this one is probably going to be more about the flanks. When you look how contentious the Baltic states might be, you kind of wonder if that may actually make them throw in their lot with Nato.

 

 

Swedens reaktion to the current developments is extremely difficult to predict. Our military capability is at a historical low, this is particulary true for the army which is half way through a massive reorganisation going from a conscript based mass army to a slimmed down force of professional and semi professional soldiers. Manpower levels are seriously under target and important weapon systems such as artillery or SAM units are basically non existant.

 

The only part of the armed forces that could react more or less immediately is the air force and then only in very limited numbers.

 

Those swedes who are the least bit interested in defence issues are by now quite used to the idea that we cooperate quite closely with NATO in peace time. Some 1400 swedish soldiers are part of the 16000 man force in exercise Cold Response 2014 in northern Norway right now. But to go from there to convince a majority of swedes that we should join NATO is a big step. Should it happen though then it could actually go pretty fast, all those years in PfP have prepared the ground.

 

Ironically it´s our weakness that may be the strongest argument for joining NATO. Should for example the situation in Ukraine get worse or should Putin show an unhealthy interest in the Baltic countries then a NATO membership would be the quickest way to improve Swedens defence.


Edited by wendist, 09 March 2014 - 1806 PM.

  • 0

#5 Colin

Colin

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 16,290 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Vancouver, Canada
  • Interests:tanks, old and new AFV's, Landrovers, diving, hovercrafts

Posted 09 March 2014 - 2001 PM

In this scenario I would like to see a mixed NATO force stationed in Poland, this in essence makes a tripwire and would force Moscow to recalculate what they can get away with. I fully agree that the eastern countries will have to do the heavy lifting, which is fair considering they are most at risk. Prepping the borders and inland defence points would be important as well.


  • 0

#6 BansheeOne

BansheeOne

    Bullshit filter overload, venting into civility charger

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12,813 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 10 March 2014 - 0630 AM

Avoiding needless provocations is another layer in planning. For example, you might want to avoid deploying German troops to contain the Kalinigrad area, or Russia is going to project a lot of its own imperial recuperation tendencies. OTOH, forward-deployed NATO forces make the commitment of the alliance clear, though the only real aspirations for NATO territory I can see would concern the Baltic states since they are former parts of the Russian empire. Ukraine is also very much at risk, but whether the West would actually risk war with Russia if the latter made a grab for the rest of the country is a highly doubtful proposition.

 

The Baltic area might face a total immediate force of five motorized, two tank, two Spetsnaz and two naval infantry brigades, plus three airborne divisions; working  Belarus into the Russian camp, another three motorized, two airmobile and one Spetsnaz brigade. Call it 23 brigades overall, ten of which "heavy". Under my basic scheme, there would be 18 active NATO brigades in Poland and the Baltic states, plus one in Norway, eleven of which heavy.

 

I think the Russians would find it hard to bring up troops from their Southern Military District as reinforcements due to the troubled situation in the Caucasus and Black Sea area, other than 7th Air Assault Division. But maybe eventually, another half-dozen motorized and two Spetsnaz or other light brigades could be shuffled around between the Southern and Central Military District to be released, bringing the total in the north to 33, 16 of which heavy. But then my plans call for NATO reinforcements of another 16 Brigades from Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands, UK and Baltic reserves for a total of 35, 16 of which heavy.

 

Numbers on the ground are thus rather well-matched; however I find that nobody in Western Europe seems to put much importance on artillery and air defense anymore, where the Russians have a definitive edge. Now air forces are yet another layer which I haven't looked at so far. It's also much harder to get a grip on the southern sector, not just due to the uncertainty of scenarios involving Ukraine, but also because Russian units might be much more easily moved between the Western, Southern and Central Military Districts for operations there.


  • 0

#7 BansheeOne

BansheeOne

    Bullshit filter overload, venting into civility charger

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12,813 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 12 March 2014 - 1133 AM

working  Belarus into the Russian camp, another three motorized, two airmobile and one Spetsnaz brigade.

 

Ah.

 

Belarus ready to station more Russian aircraft for joint exercises due to NATO activity

 

12.03.2014 15:40

 

MINSK, 12 March (BelTA) – Belarus will invite Russia to consider stationing up to 15 more aircraft in Belarus within the framework of joint exercises due to NATO activity. Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko made the statement at the session of the Security Council of Belarus on 12 March. The session was held to sum up preliminary results of the first phase of the Belarusian army’s operational readiness test, BelTA has learned.

The head of state remarked that Belarus intends to adequately respond to NATO’s decision to build up military presence near the Belarusian borders.

“We were calm about it until the large-scale exercise in Poland’s south began and until Poland requested reinforcements and an increase in the scale of the exercise. I wonder why. Why does it have to happen now when things are not calm already in this region?” noted the President. “Moreover, I am told that more than ten additional aircraft were transferred yesterday’s evening, in the night, or this morning from Italy to the exercise area (after aircraft were relocated from the UK to Lithuania). We can clearly see an increase in tensions near our borders”.

“We have to respond to it but absolutely adequately. It is no secret. Among other things we have a joint Belarusian-Russian military group in this direction, with the Belarusian army at its core. It has been done within the framework of the Union State of Belarus and Russia. The group has an action plan, including actions for this eventuality,” noted the Belarusian leader.

“We may not need the additional air force, but in line with the action plan the Russian Federation is supposed to support Belarus, including in terms of air force,” said Alexander Lukashenko.

“If about 15 aircraft have been relocated from Italy, I think it is necessary to get in touch with the Chief of the General Staff of Russia and suggest a reinforcement of, let’s say, 12-15 aircraft at most, which Russia is supposed to give us. The aircraft should be relocated to Belarus, patrol routes and backup routes should be determined the way it has been done for Belarusian aircraft and may they work, patrolling the skies. We have nothing to hide,” said the Belarusian leader.

 

http://news.belta.by...ident?id=742433

 

I've only taken a very superficial look at air power on both sides so far. At first glance the Russian arsenal looks very formidable, though I have no idea how much of it is really serviceable. Regardless, my point remains that ground-based air defense in the West has been shockingly neglected. Poland, which is one of the few NATO members to retain a classical heavy force, still has AD battalions in every mechanized brigade plus corps-level units, all equipped with fUSSR systems; the Romanians are similar though they have some Western gun systems, including the Gepards Germany apparently considered useless for the future. The Bulgarians are also reasonably well-endowed for their size. Everywhere else, mobile AD is mighty thin.

 

Most countries seem to have subordinated all ground-based assets to their air forces, including France, Germany and Italy. Those are largely either VSHORAD or semi-stationary systems like Patriot - already somewhat rare with a regiment/wing in Germany, Greece, Poland (?) and Spain each plus a Dutch squadron. There is NASAMS in Norway, the Netherlands and Spain, Spada in Italy, Crotale in France and Greece, Roland in Spain and Slovenia, but its all just a couple batteries each. France and Italy are procuring SAMP/T; Hawk soldiers on in Greece, Spain and Romania.

 

This is an area where NATO might actually depend upon US forces; they have about zilch mobile AD capabilities these days, too, but could at least bring lots of more Patriots. Not to speak of some F-22s to restore the belief in air superiority.


  • 0

#8 RETAC21

RETAC21

    A la lealtad y al valor

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12,902 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Madrid, Spain
  • Interests:Military history in general

Posted 12 March 2014 - 1540 PM

I beg to differ, the Russian Air Force is mainly equipped with Cold War leftovers and they are modernising with a lot of pain and effort. Nowadays they would be mostly targets vs F-22s and be a little better vs Rafale/EF-2000s supported by AWACs. Smart bomb capability for NATO is exponentially bigger than in 1989 so the question becomes one of how many targets can be serviced. AD did I hear? sure, when something can knock down a B-2.
  • 0

#9 BansheeOne

BansheeOne

    Bullshit filter overload, venting into civility charger

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12,813 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 13 March 2014 - 0424 AM

I'm not so much worried about their fighter capabilities - though those ca. 270 Su-27/30/35, 250 MiG-29/35 and 130 Mig-31 with their long-range missiles Flightglobal lists gotta be good for something - than about air-to-ground down in the weeds, particularly their ca. 350 attack helicopters. Yeah, most of those are big old Hind-E and -F, just like most of the ca. 510 strike aircraft are Su-24 and 25, and they are targets to look-down/shoot-down fighters too; but as a ground pounder I would still feel a bit naked to OPFOR air sneaking around the trees - a sentiment probably not shared by the other side with its substantial organic air defense assets. While AWACS and stealth aircraft work tremendously in the West's favor, I'm unsure about the real-world impact of a limited number of shooters against a large competent enemy, not some Third World player.

 

 


  • 0

#10 Colin

Colin

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 16,290 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Vancouver, Canada
  • Interests:tanks, old and new AFV's, Landrovers, diving, hovercrafts

Posted 13 March 2014 - 0557 AM

How many F-22 are they going to get to Europe, how many missiles in war stocks?


  • 0

#11 BansheeOne

BansheeOne

    Bullshit filter overload, venting into civility charger

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12,813 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 13 March 2014 - 1028 AM

I think we would be lucky to get a full wing which is what, 48?

 

Though looking around Europe, the fighter situation is indeed not bad. Listing only aircraft of at least F-16C/D standard and including procurement planned at this time:

 

F-16C/D: 582 (Turkey 270, Greece 157, USAFE 87, Poland 48, Romania 24)

Typhoon: 472 (UK 160, Germany 143, Italy 96, Spain 73)

Rafale: 180 (France)

F-15: 72? (USAFE)

Gripen: 28 (Czech Republic and Hungary 14 each)

 

F-35: 327+ planned (Turkey 100, Italy 90, Norway 52, UK 48+, Netherlands 37)

 

Attack helicopters are not so sparse either:

 

Apache: 174 (UK 67, USAREUR 48, Netherlands 30, Greece 29)

Tiger: 161 (France 80, Germany 57, Spain 24)

Mangusta: 119 (Italy 59, Turkey 60 planned)

Cobra: 67 (Turkey)

Mi-24/35: 54+ (Poland 29, Bulgaria 23, Czech Republic 12, Hungary ?)

W-3W/WA/PL: 32 (Poland)


  • 0

#12 sunday

sunday

    Bronze-age right-wing delusional retard

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 10,467 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Badalona, Spain
  • Interests:Technology, History

Posted 13 March 2014 - 1045 AM

Spanish F-18s are not too shabby. Also I think the final amount of Tigres bought would be 18, not 24, and there are some pending deliveries.


  • 0

#13 BansheeOne

BansheeOne

    Bullshit filter overload, venting into civility charger

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12,813 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 13 March 2014 - 1201 PM

There are probably some inaccuracies in that list which is mostly Wiki, some probably due to equipment already phased out in reduction measures or in storage rather than operational service. For example, the number of 57 German Tigers is the result of lengthy negotiations with industry to cut the original order of 80; only 40 are actually intended to be introduced, the rest probably to be sold on directly somehow. But they will be built, and then the Russian numbers are similarly doubtful, so I went for all of them.

 

I thought to include the Spanish F-18As, but then I would honestly have had to list all the older F-16s in Europe too which are much more farspread and time-consuming to fit into a common format. The existing list already establishes a numerical superiority of Western fighter aircraft anyway, largely obviating that particular worry (though I remain defiant about the need for more mobile air defense systems).


  • 0

#14 Gregory

Gregory

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 8,408 posts

Posted 14 March 2014 - 0012 AM

Unless the baloon goes up tomorrow, I think we're due for rebalancing of some US forces back to Europe.  It would be rather shocking if the force posture of EUCOM did not change as the result of these developments.


  • 0

#15 RETAC21

RETAC21

    A la lealtad y al valor

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12,902 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Madrid, Spain
  • Interests:Military history in general

Posted 14 March 2014 - 1229 PM

There are probably some inaccuracies in that list which is mostly Wiki, some probably due to equipment already phased out in reduction measures or in storage rather than operational service. For example, the number of 57 German Tigers is the result of lengthy negotiations with industry to cut the original order of 80; only 40 are actually intended to be introduced, the rest probably to be sold on directly somehow. But they will be built, and then the Russian numbers are similarly doubtful, so I went for all of them.

 

I thought to include the Spanish F-18As, but then I would honestly have had to list all the older F-16s in Europe too which are much more farspread and time-consuming to fit into a common format. The existing list already establishes a numerical superiority of Western fighter aircraft anyway, largely obviating that particular worry (though I remain defiant about the need for more mobile air defense systems).

 

It does, but you need to take into account that the older platforms have gone through MLU that makes them as good as the new ones, that procurement of AMRAAM and smart munitions have been ongoing over the last 20 years and that the Russians have been unable to upgrade their stuff or procure enough new munitions in this period. The one thing I would be worried is short range ballistic missiles, which conceivably could be stopped by ABM systems, but begs the question of wether cover is enough to cover supply choke points.


  • 0

#16 Marcello

Marcello

    Crew

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 1,204 posts

Posted 17 March 2014 - 1420 PM

Futher rounds of cuts incoming...


  • 0

#17 BansheeOne

BansheeOne

    Bullshit filter overload, venting into civility charger

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12,813 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 20 March 2014 - 1228 PM

I'm currently too busy in the real world to do much projecting on the internet, but the case of the two Mistral-class LHDs France is currently building for Russia under a 2011 contract has captured my attention. The first is already fitting out at Saint Nazaire and due for delivery in October; the other, laid down last June and ironically to be named Sevastopol, next year. Two more were planned to be built in Russian yards. The French are naturally reluctant to forego a € 1.37/$ 1.89 bn deal, and obviously Russia has threatened to sue for damages if it is cancelled. I don't know the contract, but apparently it included an advance payment which they would certainly have to get back. Not sure how legalities would look if delivery was blocked by official sanctions.

 

An actual arms embargo against Russia would be part of level three sanctions under the EU's current three-stage plan which would be enacted if Russia "further destabilizes Ukraine"; the way it is read now, this would apply to actions transgressing beyond Crimea (which is obviously considered lost for all practical purposes, further sanctions thus reserved as a deterrent against invading Eastern Ukraine rather than leaving Putin nothing to lose by doing this). But even so, the deal still looks awkward in the current situation; hard to condemn Russia for circumspectly invading a neighbor, then supply them with some amphibious assault capacity.

 

The question is, what do you do with two more-or-less finished billion-dollar ships sitting around? It would probably help the French if somebody else took them off their hands. Germany has had plans for acquisition of two Joint Support Ships for several years, but there was never any money. Last May there was a statement of intention to procure, and crew, them jointly with Poland as part of the deepened defense cooperation; however, the idea was more for extended-capability AORs, similar to the Berlin-mods planned for Canada or the incoming Dutch Karel Doorman. The Mistrals would probably be overkill for either Germany or Poland, and I'm not sure we could pay them; plus they might have to be modified from their current outfit for Russia at extra cost.


  • 0

#18 RETAC21

RETAC21

    A la lealtad y al valor

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12,902 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Madrid, Spain
  • Interests:Military history in general

Posted 20 March 2014 - 1518 PM

There's consternation in St. Nazaire over the possibility the deal is cancelled, and since the ships are going to be delivered unarmed, they are going to become "car carriers" soon.


  • 0

#19 BLAH

BLAH

    Crew

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 1,414 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Interests:AFVs

Posted 21 March 2014 - 0153 AM

140mm may see its day in a tank yet.

 

People are probably kicking themselves for selling all those Leopard 2s to Asia [and the ME deals].

 

Who'll get the first "free" M1s?


  • 0

#20 BansheeOne

BansheeOne

    Bullshit filter overload, venting into civility charger

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 12,813 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Berlin

Posted 21 March 2014 - 0354 AM

There's consternation in St. Nazaire over the possibility the deal is cancelled, and since the ships are going to be delivered unarmed, they are going to become "car carriers" soon.

 

I thought you were half-joking, then I saw the post on the main Ukraine thread where the French defense minister maintained those were really "civilian hulls". ROFLMFAO! :D

 

I just saw some unofficial thoughts that the planned German JSSs should be mostly dock-based in landing operations, have at most two helo spots and carry rather less than 400 personnel in addition to crew, in a package of not much above 10,000 ts. The Mistrals would be totally out of size for that. Maybe they could be jointly purchased for a NATO sealift squadron akin to the Heavy Airlift Wing (really just a flight)? Of course warships have somewhat more stringent legal requirements than aircraft as I found out when I investigated such constructions some years ago; there are actually two research vessels flying the NATO flag, but they are not warships. However, I think a solution could be found if Germany and Poland could find some additional partners.

 

Regarding tanks, there are tentative plans for joint French-German development of a next-generation MBT, though nobody was sure so far if it would actually ever come to pass. It's probably more likely now, but I still don't see anybody springing vast amounts of money for new tanks while the current fleets are still running.


  • 0




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users