Blyatskrieg

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by EACLucifer » Thu Feb 16, 2023 5:45 pm

Martin Y wrote:
Thu Feb 16, 2023 1:02 pm
I had to Google those places; right down South clustered around the route to Crimea where it narrows. Tempting to run away with the idea they're suppressing Russian air defences there for some imminent air operation, but things almost never turn out to be that obvious.
The thing that I find interesting is that a similar campaign happened in the first week or so of August, after HARM was first supplied. Then on the ninth, the great balls of fire at Saky airbase and about a dozen Russian jets wiped out on the ground. That was later claimed by Zaluzhny as a missile strike, but what missile was never specified. A lot of speculation has been related to the developmental Hrim-2 complex, a short-ranged ballistic, but Neptune, a cruise/anti-shipping missile is possible too. Clearing out a bunch of air defences might be about opening a path for cruise missiles, improvised cruise missiles based on old Tupolev recon drones, or other long range loitering munitions instead of crewed aviation.

It's also possible the Russians got complacent about their radar use and ZSU took the opportunity to attrit their air defences with anti-radiation missiles or possibly GMLRS.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by Martin Y » Thu Feb 16, 2023 5:58 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Thu Feb 16, 2023 5:45 pm
... It's also possible the Russians got complacent about their radar use and ZSU took the opportunity to attrit their air defences with anti-radiation missiles or possibly GMLRS.
That's what I suspect. If you're going to take such opportunities, it makes sense to get as many as you can in one go before they recognise their mistake.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by EACLucifer » Thu Feb 16, 2023 6:32 pm

Martin Y wrote:
Thu Feb 16, 2023 5:58 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Thu Feb 16, 2023 5:45 pm
... It's also possible the Russians got complacent about their radar use and ZSU took the opportunity to attrit their air defences with anti-radiation missiles or possibly GMLRS.
That's what I suspect. If you're going to take such opportunities, it makes sense to get as many as you can in one go before they recognise their mistake.
It's the most likely, and still a good outcome for Ukraine. If it was paving the way for something else, though, we'll see in the coming weeks.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by bjn » Thu Feb 16, 2023 6:47 pm

The latest episode of the We Have Ways podcast, which is generally dedicated to discussing WWII, has colonel Hamish de Bretton Gordon as a guest. He was a Royal Tank Regiment commander and is talking about modern tanks combat, how it fits in historically and Ukraine. He’s also advising Ukraine on counter NBC measures, having run that as well. Most of what you all probably know, but still good to hear it from an expert.

https://shows.acast.com/wehaveways/epis ... in-ukraine

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by EACLucifer » Thu Feb 16, 2023 7:12 pm

I mentioned tanks getting their barrels tangled the other day. Couldn't post footage as I generally aim not to post combat footage where people are visibly injured/killed, and there was a particularly nasty event happening more or less exactly at the same time and place. However, there is now footage of the aftermath.

Behold, the truest expression of Blyatskrieg.

I'm not a hundred percent sure this is the same incident, or if it is another example of tanks getting their barrels in a tangle.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by EACLucifer » Thu Feb 16, 2023 8:04 pm

Ukrainians are reportedly learning to operate Patriot missile systems faster than expected.

This was also the case with Gepard. And about every other system where training times were discussed.

It's partly determination and a recognition that peacetime regimes are quite relaxed (pictured, below), and it's partly that Ukrainian troops are extremely experienced - the Ukrainian tank crews coming to learn Leopard and Challenger have rather more recent tank combat experiences than the instructors. So much discussion of aid to Ukraine has acted as if Ukrainians just wouldn't be able to understand complicated systems. It's bordering on racism. This is especially true if you realise a lot of NATO systems are designed to be quite user friendly compared to the stuff the Ukrainian troops are used to using.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by Woodchopper » Thu Feb 16, 2023 8:51 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Thu Feb 16, 2023 8:04 pm
Ukrainians are reportedly learning to operate Patriot missile systems faster than expected.

This was also the case with Gepard. And about every other system where training times were discussed.

It's partly determination and a recognition that peacetime regimes are quite relaxed (pictured, below), and it's partly that Ukrainian troops are extremely experienced - the Ukrainian tank crews coming to learn Leopard and Challenger have rather more recent tank combat experiences than the instructors.
Yes, what I've heard is that UK and US instructors have described working with experienced Ukrainians as one of mutual learning where the NATO instructors gain a lot of knowledge from the Ukrainians.
EACLucifer wrote:
Thu Feb 16, 2023 8:04 pm
So much discussion of aid to Ukraine has acted as if Ukrainians just wouldn't be able to understand complicated systems. It's bordering on racism. This is especially true if you realise a lot of NATO systems are designed to be quite user friendly compared to the stuff the Ukrainian troops are used to using.
Odd, I don't recall anything like racism. But perhaps we are following different debates.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by EACLucifer » Thu Feb 16, 2023 9:13 pm

Woodchopper wrote:
Thu Feb 16, 2023 8:51 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Thu Feb 16, 2023 8:04 pm
So much discussion of aid to Ukraine has acted as if Ukrainians just wouldn't be able to understand complicated systems. It's bordering on racism. This is especially true if you realise a lot of NATO systems are designed to be quite user friendly compared to the stuff the Ukrainian troops are used to using.
Odd, I don't recall anything like racism. But perhaps we are following different debates.
It's only in some of the discussion, and it's implicit rather than explicit, but "this system is complicated, those people won't be able to get their heads round it" can quite easily cross the line into acting as if Ukrainians and potentially eastern europeans in general are unintelligent or uneducated.

Some of the commentary around HIMARS back in the summer crossed that line, and was also notably ignorant as GMLRS was not a new concept for Ukrainian troops - they had a system in service, Vilkha, at the start of the war that was designed and made in Ukraine, but sadly the ammunition was also made in Ukraine and couldn't be replenished.

Some people, Americans more than Europeans it seems, seem to assume that Ukrainians are all sturdy peasant farmers or coal miners, ignoring that it is a large, modern country with universities, an engineering and defence industry, a radically revitalised military with competent and often quite young and dynamic officers and so on.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by EACLucifer » Fri Feb 17, 2023 9:24 am

EACLucifer wrote:
Wed Feb 15, 2023 9:28 am
Woodchopper wrote:
Wed Feb 15, 2023 9:09 am
Western intelligence shows Russia is amassing aircraft close to the border with Ukraine, an indication that Moscow is preparing to throw its jets and helicopters into the war to support a stuttering land offensive.
https://www.ft.com/content/3fd6e91f-71e ... 20a2a78763
US officials have stated they don't see a massing of fixed wing aircraft, so bear in mind this is disputed/unclear. Any significant attack with fixed wing aircraft would have to contend with Ukraine's increasingly strong air defences, which have, for the most part, kept Russian crewed aircraft on their side of the lines.
Some evidence of aircraft buildup at Baltimor airbase in Voronezh, 270km north east of Kharkiv.

Was sceptical of the FT as they've reported a couple of really off stories on the war over the last year. But so have a lot of newspapers, and US officials absolutely don't get everything right either, and on top of that, apparent disputes can appear due to things as simple as different interpretations of a question.

If Russia commits a substantial number of helicopters and jets, it could nudge things in their favour on the front line, but at a very substantial cost. The goal with an offensive isn't just to advance, it is to break through so units can manoeuvre freely and so advance quickly and without paying a heavy price for doing so. Ukraine is a very large country, it cannot be conquered if the price of a mile is hundreds or thousands of soldiers and dozens of armoured vehicles, as has been the case with Russian offensives recently. The same is true of jets - if Russia can move the lines a few miles, or a few tens of miles, but at the price of much of their combat aviation, it will be radically harder for them to resist when Ukraine moves the lines back again and more.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by headshot » Fri Feb 17, 2023 11:18 am

EACLucifer wrote:
Thu Feb 16, 2023 9:13 pm
Woodchopper wrote:
Thu Feb 16, 2023 8:51 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Thu Feb 16, 2023 8:04 pm
So much discussion of aid to Ukraine has acted as if Ukrainians just wouldn't be able to understand complicated systems. It's bordering on racism. This is especially true if you realise a lot of NATO systems are designed to be quite user friendly compared to the stuff the Ukrainian troops are used to using.
Odd, I don't recall anything like racism. But perhaps we are following different debates.
It's only in some of the discussion, and it's implicit rather than explicit, but "this system is complicated, those people won't be able to get their heads round it" can quite easily cross the line into acting as if Ukrainians and potentially eastern europeans in general are unintelligent or uneducated.

Some of the commentary around HIMARS back in the summer crossed that line, and was also notably ignorant as GMLRS was not a new concept for Ukrainian troops - they had a system in service, Vilkha, at the start of the war that was designed and made in Ukraine, but sadly the ammunition was also made in Ukraine and couldn't be replenished.

Some people, Americans more than Europeans it seems, seem to assume that Ukrainians are all sturdy peasant farmers or coal miners, ignoring that it is a large, modern country with universities, an engineering and defence industry, a radically revitalised military with competent and often quite young and dynamic officers and so on.
If one is heavily incentivised, I suspect one can learn things a lot more quickly than under normal conditions.

I’ve always been terrible at languages, but if someone said “learn fluent German in two months or we’ll kill your family” I’d probably invest a bit more concentration, time and effort.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by Woodchopper » Fri Feb 17, 2023 3:23 pm

Argument against the UK sending Tranche 1 Typhoons. I’m not in a position to assess it in detail. But given the identity of the author and publisher it may be the establishment view.
https://rusi.org/explore-our-research/p ... ic-gesture

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by dyqik » Fri Feb 17, 2023 3:46 pm

Woodchopper wrote:
Fri Feb 17, 2023 3:23 pm
Argument against the UK sending Tranche 1 Typhoons. I’m not in a position to assess it in detail. But given the identity of the author and publisher it may be the establishment view.
https://rusi.org/explore-our-research/p ... ic-gesture
Or it may be an establishment person publishing because he's annoyed at being ignored.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by Woodchopper » Fri Feb 17, 2023 5:26 pm

dyqik wrote:
Fri Feb 17, 2023 3:46 pm
Woodchopper wrote:
Fri Feb 17, 2023 3:23 pm
Argument against the UK sending Tranche 1 Typhoons. I’m not in a position to assess it in detail. But given the identity of the author and publisher it may be the establishment view.
https://rusi.org/explore-our-research/p ... ic-gesture
Or it may be an establishment person publishing because he's annoyed at being ignored.
That too. We can wait and see what happens

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by EACLucifer » Fri Feb 17, 2023 5:28 pm

dyqik wrote:
Fri Feb 17, 2023 3:46 pm
Woodchopper wrote:
Fri Feb 17, 2023 3:23 pm
Argument against the UK sending Tranche 1 Typhoons. I’m not in a position to assess it in detail. But given the identity of the author and publisher it may be the establishment view.
https://rusi.org/explore-our-research/p ... ic-gesture
Or it may be an establishment person publishing because he's annoyed at being ignored.
It's overstating relatively minor issues, and also ignoring that Gripens probably aren't available in the short term, whereas T1 Typhoons are. While the US is perfectly capable of stupid, self-limiting decisions that ignore long term issues, it ought to be possible to supply them with AIM-120D.

From what I can gather, the Typhoon isn't actually mechanically much - if at all - worse than the Gripen at short field operations, it's that Sweden heavily emphasise short-field operation compared to most nations using Typhoon. Remember that Typhoon was considered for the QE class carriers for a format where the aircraft would have taken off without catapult assistance (STOBAR), which gives you a clue as to their short-field capabilities. Most canard configuration aircraft with decent thrust to weight are very good at quick takeoffs, and for the landings Typhoons do have a brake chute.

As for low altitude, they are perfectly capable of operating at low altitude, hell, I've had them come over shockingly low while trike riding in the north Pennines before. Being designed around flying high does not mean it can't fly low. The only really solid criticism is the limited air to ground options, but it will take months to train the crews, and the processes used to integrate Storm Shadow and Brimstone onto the Typhoon are known. There's time to upgrade them to one or both of those weapons.

If a Gripen user were willing to send some of their Gripens and accept Typhoons as backfill, that's worth considering, but there's Typhoons available, and they are one of the best options out of those that are available.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by Martin_B » Sat Feb 18, 2023 12:44 am

EACLucifer wrote:
Fri Feb 17, 2023 5:28 pm
As for low altitude, they are perfectly capable of operating at low altitude, hell, I've had them come over shockingly low while trike riding in the north Pennines before. Being designed around flying high does not mean it can't fly low.
I've seen Typhoons flying from above, when in Snowdonia. It was a while ago, but I think I was walking the Ranger trail and a couple flew down the valley
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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by bob sterman » Sat Feb 18, 2023 7:59 am

EACLucifer wrote:
Fri Feb 17, 2023 5:28 pm
From what I can gather, the Typhoon isn't actually mechanically much - if at all - worse than the Gripen at short field operations, it's that Sweden heavily emphasise short-field operation compared to most nations using Typhoon. Remember that Typhoon was considered for the QE class carriers for a format where the aircraft would have taken off without catapult assistance (STOBAR), which gives you a clue as to their short-field capabilities. Most canard configuration aircraft with decent thrust to weight are very good at quick takeoffs, and for the landings Typhoons do have a brake chute.
Some discussion among pilots of the Bronk article on PPRuNe...

https://www.pprune.org/military-aviatio ... n-out.html

Some debate there about whether the Typhoon with underslung air intakes is more vulnerable to sucking in debris from short rough poorly maintained runways.

PPRuNe for those not familiar - is a place where you could find postings from actual fast-jet pilots alongside Walter Mitty characters. So some posts could come from extraordinarily knowledge folk - and others from bullsh*tters.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by EACLucifer » Sat Feb 18, 2023 11:28 am

bob sterman wrote:
Sat Feb 18, 2023 7:59 am
EACLucifer wrote:
Fri Feb 17, 2023 5:28 pm
From what I can gather, the Typhoon isn't actually mechanically much - if at all - worse than the Gripen at short field operations, it's that Sweden heavily emphasise short-field operation compared to most nations using Typhoon. Remember that Typhoon was considered for the QE class carriers for a format where the aircraft would have taken off without catapult assistance (STOBAR), which gives you a clue as to their short-field capabilities. Most canard configuration aircraft with decent thrust to weight are very good at quick takeoffs, and for the landings Typhoons do have a brake chute.
Some discussion among pilots of the Bronk article on PPRuNe...

https://www.pprune.org/military-aviatio ... n-out.html

Some debate there about whether the Typhoon with underslung air intakes is more vulnerable to sucking in debris from short rough poorly maintained runways.
I'm not going to go over that discussion too much, as it's covered there and in other places, but there are a couple of things I'd add, which are applicable to military aid in general.

The first is exaggerating the differences between systems. Gripen has very good short field performance, but it ends up becoming "the one with good short field performance", which can lead people to assuming that everything else falls well short. Similar can be found in tank discussions - Challenger is "the one with the very thick armour", ignoring that very similar armour is found on the Abrams and others worldwide. No platforms is perfect or good at everything, and platforms should be viewed as tools to be used by the ZSU to achieve their goals. More capable tools give more options as to how to use them, but very seldom will one platform radically change things on its own.

The second is that delivering military aid is a process, it isn't just find half a dozen Typhoons, or a dozen tanks or whatever and hand them over. One criticism of the idea of sending tanks is that Ukrainian armoured recovery vehicles would struggle with the weight - but those paying attention will have noted that pledges aren't just MBTs, support vehicles, including ARVs, are promised too. Providing jets is a medium term goal, which means we aren't talking about jets as they exist now flown by pilots as they exist now from runways as they exist now. When discussion turned to jets, Ukrainian officials started talking about building/improving runways for them. Likewise with armaments, there's time to work on that. Famously the GBU-28 guided bunker-buster was designed, manufactured and deployed in three weeks during Desert Storm. There's time to say what weapons are needed, and how can they be fitted? The obvious ones to consider are long range standoff munitions (JASSM, Storm Shadow/Scalp EG, KEPD 350 etc) and fire and forget ground attack weapons, with Brimstone the obvious candidate as it can be used without exposing the jet to the risk of MANPADS. There's time to work out an optimum package of jets, pilot training, ground crew training, armaments, basing and so on.

And just to repeat a couple of things from the thread linked, Typhoons do operate off fairly rough surfaces in some countries, and MiG-29s and Su-27s already in use have low-mounted intakes.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by bob sterman » Sat Feb 18, 2023 1:17 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Sat Feb 18, 2023 11:28 am
And just to repeat a couple of things from the thread linked, Typhoons do operate off fairly rough surfaces in some countries, and MiG-29s and Su-27s already in use have low-mounted intakes.
Some MiG-29s have "anti-FOD" intake doors that protect the intakes from sucking in stuff at slower speeds on the ground. I think the Su-27 might have some sort of wire mesh screen that performs the same function. So both have special features for coping with rough contaminated surfaces.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by EACLucifer » Sat Feb 18, 2023 1:53 pm

bob sterman wrote:
Sat Feb 18, 2023 1:17 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Sat Feb 18, 2023 11:28 am
And just to repeat a couple of things from the thread linked, Typhoons do operate off fairly rough surfaces in some countries, and MiG-29s and Su-27s already in use have low-mounted intakes.
Some MiG-29s have "anti-FOD" intake doors that protect the intakes from sucking in stuff at slower speeds on the ground. I think the Su-27 might have some sort of wire mesh screen that performs the same function. So both have special features for coping with rough contaminated surfaces.
Typhoons can and do sometimes operate from relatively rough surfaces, though. And F-16s have a similar intake issue to the Typhoon, and they've visited Ukrainian airbases before. And even with an optimistic delivery schedule, there's many months to work on improving runways, and while they'll be a target, Russia doesn't have that much in the way of truly precise missiles, they notably missed every hangar, runway and ramp when targetting a Ukrainian airbase early on with Iskanders, and SAMP-T and Patriot, which should arrive before any western jets, will reduce that kind of risk too.

I'm not saying runway concerns are invalid at all, but that the community discussing these issues has a way of taking one issue and inflating it to the point it becomes the only issue - a good example would be the Abrams, with much obsession about it having a gas turbine and various claims it only runs on jet fuel and using three gallons per mile, whereas in truth it's got a multifuel engine, it uses just over one and a half gallons a mile and that's only a little worse than a T-72 and better than a T-80 (which also has a turbine).

The ideal jet for Ukraine is cheap and available. It's got AIM-120D or better yet Meteor. It's got long range standoff missiles and the ability to carry multiuple fire and forget missiles for ground attack work. It can cope with austere or nonexistent runways. It is invisible to radars. It's easy to train pilots on. It's available for export and can be delivered in what ever quantities needed. It's easy to maintain.

There's going to be compromises on some of those points. Between the existing use of Typhoons on less than ideal runways and the possibility of improving runways in the months it takes to train pilots, I don't think the intake location of a Typhoon is a dealbreaker and I suspect those planning the transfer of Typhoons and training of Ukrainian pilots are well aware of the issues. There are also a number of other jets that would be pretty good, it's a matter of what's available and who has the political will to do it. Typhoons might not be the optimum option, but they might be the available one, and once in the air, they are damn good aircraft.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by EACLucifer » Sat Feb 18, 2023 1:58 pm

Sunak claiming the UK will be the first country to supply long range weapons, presumably relating to discussion of Storm Shadow, though Harpoon's also been discussed. Not sure what would be significant about supplying Harpoon, though as a number of nations, including the UK, have already sent them. If anyone knows, please let me know.

Also reports of the UK running a program to develop drones for Ukrainian needs.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by Woodchopper » Sun Feb 19, 2023 7:45 am


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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by Martin_B » Sun Feb 19, 2023 1:10 pm

1) I'm surprised by how small some of the vehicles are.
2) I'm not sure what the Toyota is doing in the middle of the parade! :lol:
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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by EACLucifer » Sun Feb 19, 2023 1:29 pm

Martin_B wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 1:10 pm
1) I'm surprised by how small some of the vehicles are.
For an armoured vehicle, the larger it is, the more area needs to be armoured, which makes it heavier, necessitates a more powerful engine and potentially wider tracks which can in turn add extra weight and potentially extra volume, which starts the whole cycle over again. An armoured vehicle should be as big as required to do its job, no bigger. The smallest of those are, I think, BMD-3s, which are designed to be airmobile to work with VDV units. Not only are they very small and cramped, their armour is paper thin. One area in which western vehicles differ Soviet ones is greater focus on ergonomics. It makes the vehicles larger, and thus heavier, but they can be more effective - the manual loader in a Challenger 2 has plenty of space to work and can load the gun faster than a typical autoloader, or the manual loader on a manually loaded Soviet tank (T-55, T-62).

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by EACLucifer » Sun Feb 19, 2023 1:30 pm

The Russian disaster at Vuhledar continues. There's visual evidence they've actually been pushed back a bit now, with Ukrainian forces now present in the dachas south of the town itself.

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Re: Blyatskrieg

Post by bjn » Sun Feb 19, 2023 9:11 pm

Increasing noise coming out of the US in favour of providing F16s to Ukraine, including GOP dickhead Lindsey Graham.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/ ... ambassador

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