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  #151  
Old 06-05-2014, 12:08 AM
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Well it's some consolation that the Russian Army is mostly a conscript force, but their equipment stockpiles and longstanding mobilisation doctrines would allow them to expand very quickly, albeit no doubt with somewhat patchy training and skill levels.
True, but Russia is currently taking measures to professionalize its army, especially at the NCO level, and in highly technical fields. Moving forward, this should provide a fairly competent corps around which to build up a larger conscript force should the need arise. It would probably still be patchy in terms of training and skill level, but the backbone of any decent army is its NCOs so building capacity in that department is a start, at least.

The Russian army has had a reputation for being a massive hoard of unschooled peasants since, at the latest, WWI. To a fairly great extent, that's not an inaccurate statement. But, Russia has also shown what overwhelming numbers of even poorly trained conscripts armed with half-way decent armaments can do to a smaller, albeit more technologically sophisticated foe. In several important categories, Russia still maintains a better correlation of forces compared to NATO and, as you pointed out, will likely be able to mobilize greater numbers of men and machines in a national security emergency than its potential Western foes will. Unless NATO ups its military spending almost across the board, that Russian advantage will continue to grow.
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  #152  
Old 06-05-2014, 12:29 AM
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Both Russia and to a greater extent China will need to move away from high causality forms of warfare for the years 2025-2030. China's forced one child policy and Russia having one of highest abortion rates in the world will lead to huge labor pinch during those years i they decide that causalities do not matter during the early stages of the conflict.

China also would see huge internal pressures if large numbers of families are losing their only child on missions where the gains would not justify the loses.

Yes these countries could crack down on internal dissent, but if they are seen as throwing away lives willy nilly, any popular internal support could evaporate very quickly.
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  #153  
Old 06-05-2014, 12:42 AM
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Both Russia and to a greater extent China will need to move away from high causality forms of warfare for the years 2025-2030. China's forced one child policy and Russia having one of highest abortion rates in the world will lead to huge labor pinch during those years i they decide that causalities do not matter during the early stages of the conflict.

China also would see huge internal pressures if large numbers of families are losing their only child on missions where the gains would not justify the loses.

Yes these countries could crack down on internal dissent, but if they are seen as throwing away lives willy nilly, any popular internal support could evaporate very quickly.
True, and that's probably why both the Russian army and the PLA are doing more than ever before to provide their troops with decent individual body armor and more and better communications equipment. They're both working hard to modernize their forces, structurally, technologically, and doctrinally. I agree that the days of human wave attacks are probably over. The point I'm making is that they still both enjoy somewhat a quantitative advantage over western militaries and that's got to count for something (in a speculative near future war scenario.

Also, I've heard tidbits about China loosening its one child policy and I've also come across mentions of a Russian government PR campaign touting the nationalism/heroism of motherhood. Not sure if the latter will pay off by increasing birth rates, but it indicates that Moscow's aware of the problem and taking steps to try and rectify it.
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  #154  
Old 06-05-2014, 12:53 AM
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True, and that's probably why both the Russian army and the PLA are doing more than ever before to provide their troops with decent individual body armor and more and better communications equipment. They're both working hard to modernize their forces, structurally, technologically, and doctrinally. I agree that the days of human wave attacks are probably over. The point I'm making is that they still both enjoy somewhat a quantitative advantage over western militaries and that's got to count for something (in a speculative near future war scenario.

Also, I've heard tidbits about China loosening its one child policy and I've also come across mentions of a Russian government PR campaign touting the nationalism/heroism of motherhood. Not sure if the latter will pay off by increasing birth rates, but it indicates that Moscow's aware of the problem and taking steps to try and rectify it.
Both countries are trying to increase birth rates, but even if things turned around today any new children would only be 10 years old at the beginning of the conflict.

2030 is actually seen as the year that China will have the fewest people of working age since the 1970s iirc. A really large portion of the population will be around 60 at that point.

This chart shows how upsidedown their population will be in 2025


Russia is better but look at the minimum line in the 25-29 bar. They actually have more men aged 60-69 than they do 20-29.



Here is the US for compariason

Last edited by kato13; 06-05-2014 at 01:09 AM.
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  #155  
Old 07-24-2014, 06:59 PM
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An interesting article on Russian vs. American military procurement policies.

http://foxtrotalpha.jalopnik.com/wha...y-t-1540829820

And another, from the same blog, on the possible near-future irrelevance of the modern supercarrier.

http://sploid.gizmodo.com/i-just-can.../+TylerRogoway

I may be coming across as a hater, but I'm not. I greatly admire and root for the U.S. military and I hope that it overcomes the hurdles, some self-inflicted, others imposed from outside, that it faces moving into the next half of this decade. I just feel the need to counter the fanboy "we're invincible 'cuz we won the Cold War" thinking that some of my fellow Americans still cling to. What I like about these articles is they offer solutions, instead of just blithely defending current doctrine.
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  #156  
Old 07-24-2014, 08:39 PM
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"Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall."
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  #157  
Old 07-25-2014, 09:29 AM
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I may be coming across as a hater, but I'm not. I greatly admire and root for the U.S. military and I hope that it overcomes the hurdles, some self-inflicted, others imposed from outside, that it faces moving into the next half of this decade. I just feel the need to counter the fanboy "we're invincible 'cuz we won the Cold War" thinking that some of my fellow Americans still cling to. What I like about these articles is they offer solutions, instead of just blithely defending current doctrine.
And I, for one, applaud your efforts for striving for a balanced, more rationale appraisal. It must be quite difficult when your own government is the main generator of this fanboy-ism. There's many of us who were amazed that the US government decided to issue a medal for "winning" the Cold War when it was well known that it was a "war" of economics and influence rather than pure military might (and thus we see the medal as inappropriate because it's a reward that encourages a wholly fabricated ideal of what happened).

In Australia we have a culture of "taking the piss" out of friends and colleagues and so we aren't so eager in our expressions of patriotism (although we do tend to take it too far sometimes and succumb to the "cutting down of tall poppies" syndrome and all the viciousness that that brings). Although we don't seem to fall for the same sort of hero worship that's been manufactured in the US at times, we are seeing some of the same sort of thoughtless/mindless pride in ourselves, the military and the country. It bothers me to see the public of any country manipulated via patriotism and the public too ignorant or apathetic (or both) to question it.
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  #158  
Old 09-18-2014, 07:20 PM
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A 4000-5000 man speed-bump.

http://news.yahoo.com/nato-fast-trac...161436927.html

I applaud NATO for addressing Russian aggression and the threat to the Baltic States, but this seems like little more than a token gesture to me. I don't think that a unit such as the one briefly outlined in the article could realistically stymie a concerted Russian attack on any/all of the its former Baltic republics or Ukraine proper, especially if the U.S. contingent is based in Italy. But hey, it's a start, I guess.
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  #159  
Old 09-23-2014, 10:28 PM
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I hope this assessment is wrong.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/paulrode...-destroy-nato/
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  #160  
Old 09-24-2014, 12:02 AM
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I don't think the West or Russia really want to go to war against each other despite Russia's virtual annexation of the Crimea and the eastern Ukraine. You can put any spin on how bad Putin is or could be and how Russian forces have no right to be in the Ukraine, but Putin is far from stupid and he will not be invading the Baltics anytime soon.

On the other hand almost everyone in the West and the rest of the world really does want to go to war with ISIL. ISIL is absolute vermin and needs to be annihilated. I would be happy if the US napalmed every one of their bases, and then sent every special forces team in NATO after them to flush them out of their rat holes with flamethrowers, and then let the survivors fight hand to hand against Gurkha's with Kukri knives and televised it.
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  #161  
Old 09-24-2014, 02:28 AM
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ISIL is absolute vermin and needs to be annihilated. I would be happy if the US napalmed every one of their bases, and then sent every special forces team in NATO after them to flush them out of their rat holes with flamethrowers, and then let the survivors fight hand to hand against Gurkha's with Kukri knives and televised it.
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  #162  
Old 10-01-2014, 09:58 PM
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Who'd have thunk it, even 20 years ago?

http://www.businessinsider.com/r-us-...t-line-2014-10

All of this posturing makes me nervous. It'll be interesting to see how Moscow reacts.
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