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"Tactics and Lessons Learned in Ukraine" Topic


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02 Jul 2024 8:54 a.m. PST
by Editor in Chief Bill

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Wolfhag02 Jul 2024 8:06 a.m. PST

This is from an acquaintance who went to Ukraine in March 2022. He's a 75-year-old retired VN vet ANGLICO Marine. He was in north Kyiv fighting the Russians as a volunteer.

AS you noticed a while back Month or so, you did not hear from me for a while. Was taking a "holiday" were you mentioned. Went on a hunting trip with xm109 (Barrett .50cal) hunting man eating squirrels. Bagged one. Taught the people I was with how to use, assemble, clean etc, because squirrels sometime are hard to hit. When squirrels are riding in APC to gather nuts. will penetrate and bounce around inside, knocking their bag of peanuts to the deck. I was called, and asked to give classes on how to use this squirrel rifle (gun for any liberal who may be reading my email) Flew in, dropped in, sky hooked out and I did not have to pay for the exciting ride.

russians depend upon MASS to attack. MOSTLY not all, they attack TWICE in a day, then settle in for the night. This is the time we would hit between 02-0400 their security is Bleeped text for the most part. Broke them (Ukrainians) into 5 man teams and told them NOT to engage in force fire fights but to pick off a few squirrels and then move down the line. Sun Xu methods. If I could get my hands on some UPS drones because they can carry 75 pounds+ it would be excellent to outfit them with the two method I described before hand. Maybe start a start up converting these drones to carry and release. They would be cheap.

Here is one method I found to be very effective. Ambush. One set is Far away. The other set is between 25-30 FEET with cover. when the squirrels walk into the kill zone, the FAR set opens sustained fire and scopes picking off moving targets. This accomplished the following things.

1. The squirrels turn to the area where they are receiving fire. They hunker down with their BACKS to the close ambush. After they have settled down, the CLOSE ambush opens fire with automatic weapons. Sweeping the backs of the squirrels before they realize they are about to donate their pelts to the great green earth. Ambush over in 2 mikes or less, no survivors unless we want some, and those we have popped in legs. After receiving intel, we send them on their way to their good buddy stalin. Also every one who is playing dead received a injection to the head to ensure they are not playing opossum. The BEST ADVICE is to keep moving place to place to keep theses squirrels off guard. Weather to me SUCKS but I am use to jungles where it is nice and warm. Please pass on to your friend and our brother.

Of course, squirrels are Russians.

Wolfhag

Royston Papworth02 Jul 2024 10:50 a.m. PST

Lessons learned, have lots of trained soldiers, backed with plentiful, well supplied artillery.

Zephyr102 Jul 2024 2:49 p.m. PST

From what I have read elsewhere, it's also turning into a drone war, with the drones being used to hunt down individual soldiers (as large targets are getting rarer.) Think WW1 trench warfare with drones, making the whole front line a No Man's Land…

JMcCarroll02 Jul 2024 3:31 p.m. PST

With all those drones a long range shotgun would be use-full.

The range would need to be over 200 yards. Maybe an exploding canister fired from a mortar ?

Personal logo Legion 4 Supporting Member of TMP02 Jul 2024 4:11 p.m. PST

Good intel Wolf. But yes the new weapon on the board are drones. But as with any other new weapon. Tactics and anti-drone weapons will evolve.

Nine pound round02 Jul 2024 4:44 p.m. PST

Even at full choke, I couldn't hit a pheasant at 200 yards with my 12 gauge. Not sure what your real counter-drone weapon is- maybe a pencil-sized missile of some kind?

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP02 Jul 2024 5:27 p.m. PST

Anyone have seen yesterday the video with 22 Russian (China) motorcicles destroyed by Drones?… a whole Company of those raiders wipped out in seconds…

Armand

35thOVI Supporting Member of TMP02 Jul 2024 5:35 p.m. PST

Speaking of Drones

Subject: Welcome to Skynet: Ukraine Emerges as Hotbed of Development for Killer AI Drones


link

Personal logo aegiscg47 Supporting Member of TMP03 Jul 2024 6:06 a.m. PST

I'm not sure that there is much to be learned from this war so far. You have the Ukrainians using their M-1s and Leopard 2s as mobile pillboxes, the Russians have no idea what close air support is, and it's basically attritional, WW1 style warfare. Yes, drones have come into their own, but as with every new type of weapon there will be defenses against it and my guess is that if U.S. forces ever get involved, you will see a huge decrease in effectiveness of drones against those forces. The U.S. (and probably the UK, France, etc.) have the resources and technology base to create effective anti-drone defenses.

Personal logo Legion 4 Supporting Member of TMP03 Jul 2024 1:47 p.m. PST

Not sure what your real counter-drone weapon is
I'm sure the guys at DARPA, etc. are working on something. As there is a need to help balance the battlefield. But yes, they don't tell me … so we will have to wait and see.

I'm not sure that there is much to be learned from this war so far
Well there is always something to be learned even if not how to do things. The Russian are great example of that since Day 1 for over 2 years ago.

Ukrainians using their M-1s and Leopard 2s as mobile pillboxes,
They reverted back to their initial role of Infantry Support. But they can still kill enemy AFVs if the targets present themselves. The Russian's lost about 8000 AFVs to the Ukrainians. Someone is doing something right. And it ani't the Russians in appears.

With the Russians fighting a WWI style war of attrition. Having little concept of how to use the Infantry-Tank Team. It was made clear since the early battles of the war.

U.S. forces ever get involved, you will see a huge decrease in effectiveness of drones against those forces. The U.S. (and probably the UK, France, etc.) have the resources and technology base to create effective anti-drone defenses.
Agreed … we really have no idea what is going behind closed doors at DARPA, The Pentagon, Bigelow Aerospace, etc.

Personal logo Legion 4 Supporting Member of TMP03 Jul 2024 1:47 p.m. PST

Not sure what your real counter-drone weapon is
I'm sure the guys at DARPA, etc. are working on something. As there is a need to help balance the battlefield. But yes, they don't tell me … so we will have to wait and see.

I'm not sure that there is much to be learned from this war so far
Well there is always something to be learned even if not how to do things. The Russian are great example of that since Day 1 for over 2 years ago.

Ukrainians using their M-1s and Leopard 2s as mobile pillboxes,
They reverted back to their initial role of Infantry Support. But they can still kill enemy AFVs if the targets present themselves. The Russian's lost about 8000 AFVs to the Ukrainians. Someone is doing something right. And it ani't the Russians in appears.

With the Russians fighting a WWI style war of attrition. Having little concept of how to use the Infantry-Tank Team. It was made clear since the early battles of the war.

U.S. forces ever get involved, you will see a huge decrease in effectiveness of drones against those forces. The U.S. (and probably the UK, France, etc.) have the resources and technology base to create effective anti-drone defenses.
Agreed … we really have no idea what is going behind closed doors at DARPA, The Pentagon, Bigelow Aerospace, etc.

LostPict03 Jul 2024 5:12 p.m. PST

And we hope to keep that way. There is lots of innovation going on in Ukraine, but it's mostly classified. Astonishingly cool things that will shape the future battlefield. The next war will indeed see lots of drones, lots of autonomous systems, and lots of anti-drone stuff. Still plenty of room for ground pounders, arty, and AFVs.

Cuprum203 Jul 2024 7:19 p.m. PST

Are you now talking about that wonderful Western army that fled from Afghanistan, leaving the bearded victors with 85 billion dollars in military equipment? About that army that can't do anything about the Arab guys in slippers and skirts who have been blocking shipping in the Suez Canal and the Red Sea for six months now? ;-)

35thOVI Supporting Member of TMP04 Jul 2024 5:44 a.m. PST

Cuprum2, the Russians didn't exactly win garlands in their time campaigning in Afghanistan either. 😉

In our case, it wasn't the armed forces, but the "leader", responsible.

Cuprum204 Jul 2024 7:10 a.m. PST

In our country, too, the order to withdraw was given by the traitor president, Mikhail Gorbachev.
But compare how the Soviets left Afghanistan: systematically, under unfurled banners, the commander of the Soviet military contingent was one of the last to leave the territory of Afghanistan.
And the Soviet-trained Afghan army still fought, without any outside support or help, for three years.

The last column of Soviet troops leaves the territory of Afghanistan. General Gromov, the Russian commander-in-chief of the Afghan contingent, reports that the Soviet contingent has left Afghanistan completely:

link

The song of the musical group, which was created by veterans of the war in Afghanistan, "Cascade", written for this event: "We are leaving"… (with English subtitles)

link

Personal logo Legion 4 Supporting Member of TMP04 Jul 2024 7:17 a.m. PST

Hmmmm … now I understand …

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP04 Jul 2024 10:55 a.m. PST

Gee, the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan almost sounds like a proud moment, Cuprum2!

I think Russia has lost a lot more soldiers and equipment in Ukraine than the US did in Afghanistan. I don't recall us dialing up North Korea to get help on more stuff after Afghanistan. If Russia still had a surface navy, it might have helped restore trade being blocked by Houthis. Er..maybe not, Iran would not like that, no more drones for Russia….

Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP04 Jul 2024 3:46 p.m. PST

"Gee, the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan almost sounds like a proud moment, Cuprum2!…"

Ha!Ha!…


Armand

Cuprum204 Jul 2024 5:42 p.m. PST

Tortorella, yes, compared to how the United States ended its war, this is quite a reason for pride. Even defeat can be worthy…
Of course, Russia lost more soldiers and equipment in Ukraine than the United States did in Afghanistan. But this is a war on a completely different scale – it's a pity that you are not able to realize this. Thousands of kilometers of front; economic and military support for the enemy from more than fifty states; sanctions unprecedented in history; the enemy's superiority in surveillance and reconnaissance means, due to the fact that Russia does not dare to shoot them down due to their false neutrality.
All this was not against the United States in Afghanistan – but… You fled in disgrace.

Russia has no problems with the Houthis – Russian ships calmly use this route. This is your problem – you have to solve it.

Yes, Russia bought technology for the production of some drones (kamikazes) from Iran. But now we produce them ourselves and constantly modify them. I don't see any problems in this. We did not pay attention to this area in a timely manner – the war showed this mistake and we corrected it in the most rational way.

Oh yeah – you didn't call North Korea. But you called South Korea))) NATO could not find the required number of shells for Ukraine – they had to buy Korean ones. And long before Russia.

Russia does have a problem with its surface fleet – but we do not have a constant need to project power thousands of kilometers from our borders. A powerful fleet is not our main task. The protection of our coastline and communications is enough for us.

Nine pound round04 Jul 2024 6:35 p.m. PST

I hate to say it, but I believe in giving the devil his due- and Cuprum is not mistaken: the Soviet withdrawal from Afghanistan was far less precipitous than the American withdrawal- and no attempt to change the subject or take cheap shots about naval casualties can change that.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP05 Jul 2024 5:14 a.m. PST

Less precipitous, yes. But the war itself was far more disastrous in my opinion from what I have read. A factor in the collapse of the Soviet Union? Far more tanks and aircraft lost, billions of rubles, far more Soviet casualties than the U.S. suffered, thousands of civilian deaths, perhaps millions. There were a number of proxy participants, were there not, on both sides?

The embarrassment of the US evacuation as a @#$# operation has made me defensive in that civilian leadership, not the military, was at fault. A distinction should be made.

I stand corrected on your Korean aid point, and the Houthi, it was a cheap shot.
Your point about the navy has merit and it was also a cheap shot on my part.

However the Soviet surface fleet was not inconsiderable and did serve a projection function for some time via missile carrying cruisers and destroyers. Amphibious ships, and a merchant fleet with amphibious conversion capabilities, helicopter and fixed wing carriers as well.

Cuprum205 Jul 2024 5:45 a.m. PST

The Mujahideen who fought against the USSR were supplied and armed by the USA, Great Britain, China, Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Japan. The United States alone spent about $20 USD billion on military assistance and training of Afghan jihadists and mercenaries. They received the most modern weapons, such as Stingers.
If you want to compare the Soviet war in Afghanistan with a similar US war, compare it with Vietnam…

The fleet is an expensive pleasure. After the collapse of the USSR, both the navy and the Russian army were significantly reduced and were rather poorly funded (remember the Russian army during the Chechen wars – a sad sight). After this, the Russian army was made small, but relatively well-equipped, aimed exclusively at small local conflicts (countering terrorism). The main attention was also paid to nuclear rearmament (as a means of deterrence). So a large fleet, with the exception of carriers of nuclear missiles, was also of little interest.

Personal logo Legion 4 Supporting Member of TMP06 Jul 2024 4:57 p.m. PST

Well, it has been said by the top US leadership that the Military's #1 Priority is climate change. Saw the footage a number of times. As long as our enemies know that the events that have occurred in some places of the world demonstrates the USA is not serious …

LostPict08 Jul 2024 8:19 p.m. PST

Climate change is a complex topic. Sea level rise has a direct impact on USN and USMC facilities at the coast and impacts navigation as ship channels and currents change. This article discusses some of pragmatic effects and investment tradeoffs.

link

Personal logo Legion 4 Supporting Member of TMP09 Jul 2024 6:14 a.m. PST

Understand that … But IMO the armed force's priority should be prepare for war.

A long time ago as a Rifle Plt Ldr then Mech Co. Cdr back in the '80. old fart Can think of very few things we could do to effect climate change.

35thOVI Supporting Member of TMP09 Jul 2024 6:51 a.m. PST

"A long time ago as a Rifle Plt Ldr then Mech Co. Cdr back in the '80. old fart Can think of very few things we could do to effect climate change."

But Legion, what about electric tanks and other vehicles? We could build charging stations all over the world and build charging vehicles. How much would a battery weigh for HBT? What size would it be? How many miles per charge? Would the weight increase like it has for other vehicles? Would roads and bridges need to be modified for the weight? What happens while we experiment with these and a major war breaks out? Will our enemies follow our lead? Or will they stay with conventional weapons, for which their military industry is already set up? Out producing us in spades. How do we dispose of these batteries? How about all the ingredients that come from our opponents for those batteries? Lastly, war itself destroys the earth itself.

But DA#N the possible disasters to our military and abilities to wage war! The troops can say "we cared! We were saving Gaia!", as they are defeated and die.

Yes, the militaries priorities should be readiness and preparation for war. Not DEI and environmentalism. IMO we have lost our way.

Tortorella Supporting Member of TMP09 Jul 2024 8:14 a.m. PST

"The six Army modernization priorities long range precision fires, next generation combat vehicles, future vertical lift, network, air and missile defense, and Soldier lethality"

This has been the same for the last several years. But the new army Chief of Staff has added command and control. Updates for tech and organizational systems. Climate change may be a factor in some of these. I don't know. But I think media sources regularly fail to portray the priorities factually as they keep featuring incidents related to diversity training or climate to fuel more outrage. The priorities are a long way from diversity parties.

Here is the Senate's budget authorization summary for this year. I don't see anything about climate change or diversity in it, unless I missed something. It is focused quite a bit on the well being of personnel.

PDF link


My opinion:
The issue here in discussions of electric vehicles, despite the acceleration and power they can deliver, has often been the "recharging problem". But I am not sure that this is significantly more of a problem than fossil fuels. The advantage is that we already have the infrastructure in place for fossil. But that involves clunky expensive production and delivery issues from drilling oil to processing to storing, moving, protecting it. There are still issues with electric: battery production, source of recharge power, etc.

This means some sort of practical transition period, hybrids, back-up systems, etc. the electric tech will not look the same in ten years. We need both for a while to see how things go, nuclear as well. Cannot have all the eggs in one basket.

As for climate change, it seems to be getting addressed as part of fighting efficiency. Severe weather events are taking a toll, including regular heat waves that reduce human performance.

Storms patterns are changing the world environment. Arctic warfare territory is changing. Sand and dust will need further mitigation. Coastline installations are changing. Population centers will shift. Little or no home insurance available for many areas now. I have already met climate refugees from the south here in New England. The oceans are warmer and producing more big storms, which could impact naval projection and commerce.

Or it will all go away, as a pattern we are going through. I sure hope so. But it's not looking good these days.

Personal logo Legion 4 Supporting Member of TMP09 Jul 2024 6:01 p.m. PST

But Legion, what about electric tanks and other vehicles?
When the tech gets there I'll laud it. But it ani't there yet … not even close.

The six Army modernization priorities
As long as they make the Armed Forces better at warfighting and wining wars.

It is focused quite a bit on the well being of personnel.
It had too. The enlistment numbers makes that very clear. E.g. the conditions of troop and family housing in many cases is embarrassing. In many cases sons & daughters are not joining like their dad or mom did in the past.

A number of considerations effects this of course … The current social environmental concepts, beliefs, etc. plays a part. Not everybody is OK with DEI, CRT, LGBTQ, etc. dogma that is going on. The economy affects it too. As well as our leaders in DC have some influence. That is just off the top of my head.

As for climate change, it seems to be getting addressed as part of fighting efficiency.
Weather has always been a consideration when waging wars. And influences battles. Even just when training as well. But if the tech is not there yet, don't try to force it. E.g. Pushing EVs where the tech needs a lot of work to really be useful.

"Orville, we just flew 12 seconds at a very low altitude. We are not ready to try crossing the Atlantic … yet."

Dagwood10 Jul 2024 3:18 a.m. PST

Lots of breakthroughs in technology come from military research (or space research). Probably because they are government supported with huge budgets. The prospect of military use of battery powered vehicles could well result in real improvements in battery size and weight.

But I can't see MBTs being wholly electric for some time …

Personal logo Legion 4 Supporting Member of TMP10 Jul 2024 7:06 a.m. PST

Lots of breakthroughs in technology come from military research (or space research). Probably because they are government supported with huge budgets.
Yes, of course, many things we use in the civilian sector came about from military, space tech etc.

The prospect of military use of battery powered vehicles could well result in real improvements in battery size and weight.
It could but there are still a number of tech issues to be addressed. But yes, tech evolved all the time.

But I can't see MBTs being wholly electric for some time …
Totally agree … Much more tech to come about at some time in the future.

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