Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation image.

Russia Prepares for War

Is Russia preparing for war? Today, newspapers around the world carried headlines claiming that Russia was gearing up for World War 3. Warfare.Today asks whether that really is the case.

Several reports from the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation described the situation in depth.

A special, combat readiness inspection was announced on 7 February:

Today, the Minister of Defence General of the Army Sergei Shoigu has held teleconference with the leadership of the Russian Armed Forces. General of the Army Sergei Shoigu stated that the unannounced combat readiness inspection had started in Russian Aerospace Forces under the order of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief.

According to him, military control bodies, formations and military units have been put on highest levels of combat readiness starting from 9 a.m.

“Special attention is to be paid to combat alert, deployment of air defence systems in wartime, and readiness of aviation groups for repelling aggression. Tactic drills and control exercises are to be held with all involved military units and formations,” ordered the Defence Minister.

He also ordered to follow safety requirements, provide security of armament and munitions, and prevent damage of state property and bad influence on the environment.[ref]

Further details were made public on 8 February, revealing the extent of the operation:

About 45,000 servicemen and 1,700 pieces of armament and hardware, including 150 aircraft and 200 air defence complexes, are involved in the unannounced combat readiness inspection of the Aerospace Forces. This was stated by the Deputy Defence Minister Alexander Fomin at the meeting with Military Attachés. The unannounced combat readiness inspection of the Aerospace Forces started by the order of the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin on February 7. The inspection is to be finished on February 9. According to the Deputy Defence Minister, assessment of readiness of military control bodies and training level of troops is the main goal of the inspection. Alexander Fomin stated that a part of forces of the 1st air defence and missile defence army and 15th special Aerospace Forces army (Moscow air defence zone) as well as Command of long-range and military-transport aviation had been put on combat readiness. He stressed that special attention was paid to deploying of the air defence systems and readiness of aviation groupings for repelling aggression. Within the first day of inspection, military units have been put on highest levels of combat readiness and military control bodies developed plans for further operations. Air defence missile divisions of the Moscow air defence zone are being projected on new position areas. A part of long-range and military transport aviation has been checking readiness of radar units for performing assigned tasks in new position areas. “Moreover, transport aircraft are projecting air defence units on the Ashuluk range. The units will conduct firing there,” stated Alexander Fomin. “Readiness level of the military control bodies will be assessed in course of command-and-staff training. Training level of military units and formations will be assessed in course of tactic exercises. Units, which do not take part in the inspection, will hold combat training activities,” said Alexander Fomin.[ref]

Earlier in the day, the Russian Ministry had released details of air defence and radar units:

Air defence and radar units of the Russian Aerospace Forces took new position areas in course of the combat readiness inspection.

Crews of radar stations as well as S-300 and S-400 air defence missile systems arrived at new positions and took the combat duty. Units of radiotechnical troops started transferring radar data to the command centre of the aid defence troops. Mobile radar stations of combat regime conducted marching and started expand radar zone on unequipped positions.[ref]

The Russian inspection is a muscle flexing exercise that must have been anticipated by NATO commanders following the deployment of troops to Estonia.

Photo: Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation image.

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