Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Zapad 2017

While we should watch Russia's September 2017 Zapad military exercise closely for clues about how Russia will fight (with a small worry that Russia will use the exercise as a cover to mobilize and invade NATO), we should watch it very closely to detect what Russia conceals and what they want us to see.

Soviet exercises in the Cold War featured Soviet tanks fording rivers with their snorkels, making it seem as if Russia could road march across river barriers.

But I recall that the Russians would actually pave the bottoms of those rivers to allow the tanks to cross rather than bog down in the mud and become a tomb for the crews. We didn't see the preparation part that took a lot of time and only saw the river crossings rapidly take place.

Russia, if it isn't planning to invade NATO any time soon, has an interest in making the West think Russia can invade NATO at any time they choose.