According to the latest study of Russian and U.S military technology and capacity, senior researcher at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, Lisa Sawyer Samp, says the Russian army is ahead of the United States in creating a deterrent “defense area”. This comes with the help of long-range missile systems, in the use of combined combat arms, electro-magnetic pulse technology, supply-line security, and also in cyber wars.
Samp pointed out that the United States’ lagging behind Russia is more than real, and is clearly evident in Central and Eastern Europe. And while the rivalry between Moscow and Washington around the world seems dubious, Russia has some potential and resources to meet the challenges of the United States and its allies in a particular region, the expert said.
Former US Undersecretary of Defense Evelyn Farkas said Russia, unlike the United States, is very competent in modernizing its Armed Forces, despite not spending as much as the United States on defense. Moscow is increasing its forces in key areas, with increased cruise missiles and anti-aircraft defense systems, which in the future will cause major problems for the Americans.
The reform of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation was announced in 2008 at a private meeting of the country’s Ministry of Defense.
The modernization program includes, among other things, the organization of units and networks throughout Russia, with a wide range of systems and complexes – from the most recent fighters to upgraded tanks.
Russian military doctrine is primarily defensive in nature, not boasting the navy that the US has. Unlike the US, which has over 800 military bases and installations around the world, Russian doctrine is based chiefly around the defense of the Russian motherland, a vast territory spanning nine time-zones, from the Baltic Sea to the Black sea vertically, and from the border of Poland in the west to the Pacific Ocean, Korea, and Japan to the east.
Thus, in 2017 alone 16 vessels, including warships, 190 modern aircraft and helicopters, 800 armored tanks and armored combat vehicles, 170 anti-aircraft missile systems and complexes, and 1,950 multifunctional vehicles were introduced into use by the Russian military.
A decade ago, US elites appeared to be creating buzz around the idea that they had build a complex network of underground bases, tunnels, and veritable cities for some portion of the wealthy and well-connected population to live in the event of a total war, involving the exchange of potentially thousands of nuclear warheads between the US and Russia. China, Israel, France, Pakistan, and India are also nuclear powers, and their involvement would also be highly likely. Such an event would see the end of civilization as we know it on the planet.
However, a number of events ostensibly occurred, particularly at the major underground installation located under the international airport in Denver, Colorado, where a bunkerized city was apparently under construction, including a ‘Washington D.C 2.0’. These events, recorded as ‘large blasts’ may have made such an installation impossible to complete. Rumors and speculation continue to surround that event.
A highlight of the Russian defense is the S-400 missile system, the most sought after missile defense system in the world. This has been a major point of contention as many states allied with the US or part of the US-led NATO alliance, such as Saudi Arabia and Turkey respectively, seek to purchase these systems.
Another area where Russia is ahead, as mentioned above, are EMP devices. EMP blasts, or Electromagnetic Pulse blasts, are more than just a creation of science fiction but are a deadly reality and a very real threat. Earlier in February Russia’s military boasted its ability to cripple enemy warships, planes and communications.
EMPs are typically deployed by detonating a powerful nuclear blast in the above the enemy target, which releases a devastating electromagnetic radiation. Such devices may have been used by Russian forces on the Russian-side of the border to jam and crash Ukrainian or American surveillance drones being used over the break-away Donbass Republic, in the former east of Ukraine.
At the same time, studies like this are a double-edged sword. On the one hand, they may in fact correctly reflect areas where the Russian military has some advantage. On the other, is the reality of ‘closing the gap’ lobbying on the part of the military industrial complex.
It is a difficult and fine line to walk – balancing an exaggeration of the US’s military deficiencies in order to garner further congressional budget approval, vs. having allies or subordinates come to believe that the US is unable to defend its international ‘interests’ and ‘obligations’ (maintenance of empire).
Yet nevertheless there is a real criticism made in the study. The US absolutely overspends on the military in terms of the returns on the ‘investment’. This is due to the total privatization and profit motive of the US’s military industrial complex. Generally, the government is massively over-billed for items which are procured by other country’s militaries at a fraction of the price, sometimes by an order of 100/1 or more. Famously submarine toilet seats which cost $0.80 cents to produce, are sprayed with questionable ‘anti-thermal’ coating, and are billed to the US Navy at hundreds of dollars per unit. In contrast, soldiers are often underpaid, and the Veteran’s Administration, underfunded. This makes the US military not only economically unsustainable, but greatly reduces morale and ‘fighting spirit’.