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  #61  
Old January 29th, 2017, 08:33 PM
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Default Re: Russian Invasion of the Baltic States

You might be surprised hopefully the build up would not go undetected but even with that the time it would take for the West to react is frightning, putting units in piecemeal will just cause there loss so the West needs time.
If we can win the air war that will be down to the airforce targeting logistics not the front line tonstop by cutting the supply line.
If that fails why do you think the West wont escalate the situation with nukes to gain time, if we lose the air war how do you propose stopping them.
Not looked at for years but most of the plans in cold war era including holding the Middle East if Russia decided to go for the oil resulted in the West being the one that escalated things.
Its all about getting your initial forces in place & then its down to logistics & supply especially if you want to advance.
How about initial strike being cruise missiles & everything the airforce can muster, take out there airforce before reinforcments arrive. Now as Russia I would get ready to take out the units transfering across the atlantic while they were vulnerable, dont let the forces mass. This is where Russia might escelate taking out the carrier groups is important, if needs the odd nuke in the sea would do the trick & is the least use of nukes, no collateral damage.
Over simplified obviosly but what happens now, full escalation by the West?
I cant remember the details but towards the end of the cold war the West was ready to launch when the Soviets were conducting exercises. Same happened in 83 when we conducted exercises though they did not get as close to it as we did.
I knew a guy in the signal core at the time he always joked he would never see the war as despite being mobile keeping track of the people listening to you was vital so you would be an initial target. If I remember they broke protocul & asked there conterparts just what the hell was going on.

Probably shouldnt say this but I got a wifi dongle off him that was excelent, had l would guess about 3 times the range of mine & could connect to anything, security protocul just meant waiting for around 30 seconds.. Doesnt do the latest protocul as its old but I bet the existing kit does.
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  #62  
Old January 29th, 2017, 09:29 PM

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Default Re: Russian Invasion of the Baltic States

No one, with half a working brain, is going to use nuclear weapons over the Baltic States, I very much hope.

Hell I don't actually think NATO, and certainly not UK, should fight for them at all, since they are not a vital interest in any way shape or form.
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  #63  
Old January 29th, 2017, 10:45 PM

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Default Re: Russian Invasion of the Baltic States

The Russians have two reasons for caring about the Baltics:

1. The first is defensive. Think about this from the Russian perspective: 70 years ago a coalition of western/Central European states invaded Russia and killed 30 million Russians. Thirty years before that, a coalition of Central European states (German and Austria-Hungary) invaded Russia and killed a whole bunch of Russian. Sixty years before that, a coalition of Western European States and The Ottoman Empire invaded Crimea and killed a bunch of Russians. Forty years before that, a coalition of western/Central European states under Napoleon invaded Russia and killed a whole bunch of Russians. And on and on. They look at history with a great deal of mistrust towards the west. Add that to the fact that the Baltic states were actually part of Russia from 1721-1918, and part of the USSR from 1945-1991, and the fact that all the previous invasions of Russia had to start much further west, and you can start understand why they care about the Baltics.

2. The second reason is offensive: how can Russia destroy NATO today? Not by marching to the Rhine. The way Russia can destroy NATO is by invading a NATO country and then by nuclear brinksmanship or other means demonstrate that the alliance is unwilling to defend its members, which is the organizations entire reason for existence. If they can do that, they destroy NATO's legitimacy and the alliance could unravel.

As far as willingness to use nukes, the Russians have been very open about the fact that they are. They recently refused to renew a treaty that pledged that they would not use nukes first, and they've been open about threatening states like Denmark with nukes for accepting US missile tracking sites. They ar banking on the fact that NATO is NOT willing to go that far, and that this unwillingness would bring Europe and the US to the peace table in the event of a shooting war. It's scary stuff.
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  #64  
Old January 30th, 2017, 04:55 AM

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Default Re: Russian Invasion of the Baltic States

I am certain UK would use nuclear weapons in response to a nuclear attack on British territory and, perhaps, on British forces. A large scale Chemical attack, that caused a lot of casualties, might also trigger that response. I am not sure much else would, outside an actual attempted invasion, or that it should.

I really cannot see why on earth the EU, or NATO, wants the Baltics to be in their orbit rather than being a more or less neutral buffer zone between Russia and the West. To me exactly the same thing applies to Ukraine. I would try to defend nothing further East than Poland.

To my mind the EU has many, huge, internal political problems, and next to no military muscle -especially since Brexit- to back it up its extravagant ambitions. The EU's, largely unelected, political elites attempts to create EU armed forces are not only almost certainly doomed to failure but are actually very dangerous from the point of view of NATO, that remains the actual cornerstone of Western European defence and security.

To put it bluntly if the USA loses interest in NATO, Europe is up s..t creek without a paddle.

Last edited by IronDuke99; January 30th, 2017 at 04:58 AM.. Reason: cannot spell for toffee
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  #65  
Old January 30th, 2017, 10:36 PM
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Default Re: Russian Invasion of the Baltic States

IMHO the EU suffers primarily from a lack of cohesive interests aside from economic. And as you said if the US decides to quit footing the bill to defend Europe, which Trump may well do if Europe doesn't start meeting it's NATO commitments, things will get "interesting".
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  #66  
Old January 31st, 2017, 02:44 AM
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Post Re: Russian Invasion of the Baltic States

Given a full-scale invasion of the Baltics, “The main Russian objectives would be securing control over the air and blockade the Baltic Sea. Kaliningrad region would be used to blockade the land route through Suwalki, Poland to Vilnius and Riga (my emphasis). Russia would not necessarily need to assault Suwalki itself, but rather secure control over Lithuanian towns of Kybartai, Marijumpole, Kalvarija and Druskinskai. First cities to fall would be Narva, Tartu, Balvi, Kārsava, Rēzekne, Krāslava and Daugavpils. Since Vilnius is close to Belarusian border it would be first Baltic capital to be attacked.”

Source:”Russian Invasion of the Baltics: Nightmare or Reality,” https://latvianhistory.com/2016/07/09/.

Blocking the route up front Suwalki would appear to be a likely objective of Russian planners. And, I would venture to say, a prime objective which must be achieved within the first hours of the conflict. Departing a bit from Grant1pa's scenario, I would envision Russian paratroopers tasked to hold the intersection of A7 and E67 at
Marijumpole until heavy mechanized and armor forces are brought out of the Kaliningrad.

I would not anticipate Belarus sending forces to capture Vilnius, but I could see a joint Russian Belarusian military exercise occurring just prior to the start of hostilities as a ruse to enable Russian forces from inside Belarus to attack the Lithuanian capital.


This is the basis of the scenario Grant1pa authored. You can find it here: http://forum.shrapnelgames.com/showp...41&postcount=1.

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  #67  
Old January 31st, 2017, 08:47 AM
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Default Re: Russian Invasion of the Baltic States

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Originally Posted by shahadi View Post
Either way, what would be the response of Sweden and Finland, two countries not a part of NATO?
Sweden has declared it will not remain neutral with the so called “declaration of solidarity” and participates in a number of NATO drills and NATO operations (Cold Response, Afghanistan, Libya). The Swedish ground forces are however in a pitiful state when compared to the large but less advanced cold war army. Sweden could I imagine contribute no more than a battle group of battalion(+) size as a sort of symbolic force at present. But could also open its borders and air fields to NATO air.

But, in Sweden there is an anti-immigration party which seems to steadily be gaining ground. This party views Putin/Russia in a favourable light. Should this party be in power at the time of a Russian invasion of the Baltics I assume there would be no Swedish reaction (assuming the invasion takes place a few years from now)...


Finland has retained the conscription army and can mobilise considerable conventional forces should Finland come under threat. Even if Finland does not deploy forces to the Baltic states I imagine Russia would not leave the northern flank completely open…
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  #68  
Old January 31st, 2017, 01:55 PM

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Default Re: Russian Invasion of the Baltic States

Quote:
Originally Posted by shahadi View Post
Given a full-scale invasion of the Baltics, “The main Russian objectives would be securing control over the air and blockade the Baltic Sea. Kaliningrad region would be used to blockade the land route through Suwalki, Poland to Vilnius and Riga (my emphasis). Russia would not necessarily need to assault Suwalki itself, but rather secure control over Lithuanian towns of Kybartai, Marijumpole, Kalvarija and Druskinskai. First cities to fall would be Narva, Tartu, Balvi, Kārsava, Rēzekne, Krāslava and Daugavpils. Since Vilnius is close to Belarusian border it would be first Baltic capital to be attacked.”

Source:”Russian Invasion of the Baltics: Nightmare or Reality,” https://latvianhistory.com/2016/07/09/.

Blocking the route up front Suwalki would appear to be a likely objective of Russian planners. And, I would venture to say, a prime objective which must be achieved within the first hours of the conflict. Departing a bit from Grant1pa's scenario, I would envision Russian paratroopers tasked to hold the intersection of A7 and E67 at
Marijumpole until heavy mechanized and armor forces are brought out of the Kaliningrad.

I would not anticipate Belarus sending forces to capture Vilnius, but I could see a joint Russian Belarusian military exercise occurring just prior to the start of hostilities as a ruse to enable Russian forces from inside Belarus to attack the Lithuanian capital.


This is the basis of the scenario Grant1pa authored. You can find it here: http://forum.shrapnelgames.com/showp...41&postcount=1.

=====
Exactly the way I researched it. I agree with the use of paratroopers as a major element in any Russian incursion. I just went a different direction with the emphasis on NATO's defense from mechanized forces (one of the major concerns of the Baltic governments).

The inclusion of a "southern" axis of attack through Belarus is definitely an option and would be predictable. Kudos Shahadi!

Some further readings for those that are interested:

http://www.globalsecurity.org/milita...uwalki-gap.htm

https://www.rand.org/content/dam/ran...AND_RR1253.pdf

Tom
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  #69  
Old January 31st, 2017, 09:34 PM

IronDuke99 IronDuke99 is offline
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Default Re: Russian Invasion of the Baltic States

Quote:
Originally Posted by wulfir View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by shahadi View Post
Either way, what would be the response of Sweden and Finland, two countries not a part of NATO?
Sweden has declared it will not remain neutral with the so called “declaration of solidarity” and participates in a number of NATO drills and NATO operations (Cold Response, Afghanistan, Libya). The Swedish ground forces are however in a pitiful state when compared to the large but less advanced cold war army. Sweden could I imagine contribute no more than a battle group of battalion(+) size as a sort of symbolic force at present. But could also open its borders and air fields to NATO air.

But, in Sweden there is an anti-immigration party which seems to steadily be gaining ground. This party views Putin/Russia in a favourable light. Should this party be in power at the time of a Russian invasion of the Baltics I assume there would be no Swedish reaction (assuming the invasion takes place a few years from now)...


Finland has retained the conscription army and can mobilise considerable conventional forces should Finland come under threat. Even if Finland does not deploy forces to the Baltic states I imagine Russia would not leave the northern flank completely open…

At the risk of getting too political why would an anti immigration party in Sweden (and I presume it is anti Islamic immigration) be pro Putin and Russia? Or, to put it another way, why would a pro Islamist immigration party be anti Putin and Russia? Surely Putin's Russia is not the biggest threat to Sweden right now?

I am genuinely puzzled by this, given my own ideas about who the enemies of Western civilisation actually are: To my mind all forms of militant Islam, closely followed by China (actually a huge longer term threat) and, way back, North Korea.

I do think there is a window right now to make Russia much less of a potential enemy than she has been any time since the early 1900's. It may, or may not, get taken...

Last edited by IronDuke99; January 31st, 2017 at 09:44 PM..
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  #70  
Old February 1st, 2017, 04:24 AM
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Post Re: Russian Invasion of the Baltic States

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Originally Posted by Grant1pa View Post

I read the article by Rand on a Russian invasion of the Baltics. What I found most striking is the lack of attention to Lithuania, in particular the Sulwaki Gap. In fact, Sulwaki was not even mentioned in the analysis.

In my reading of the Rand report the absence of heavy armor and the lack of an army corp (at least three cited in the study are needed) is a recipe for failure. Now, here is the rub, “…one challenge NATO would face in the event of a Baltic crisis would be moving heavy equipment and supplies from storehouses and ports in Western Europe east to Poland and beyond .”

With the Kaliningrad to the Northwest and Belarus to the East that only leaves the rail line through Sulwaki to get heavy formations into the battle. The Sulwaki Gap is critical to any NATO strategy, yet it is not mentioned in the Rand report.

I do not believe Russia would enter into Poland at all, that would widen the hostilities to a nuclear tipping point in my opinion (tactical nukes.) So, the battle would take place at the Polish/Lithuanian border along route E67 and the rail line up from Sulwaki into Marijumpole. Else NATO cannot get the heavy stuff into the battle area. Game over.

Talking about games, Rand war gamed a NATO response. I found it most enlightening. For, the old school table top and board game guys with pencil and paper here is the link: https://paxsims.wordpress.com/2016/0...f-the-baltics/

And, here is the game board


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