Thoughts on the military and military activities of a diverse nature. Free-ranging and eclectic.

Friday, March 31, 2006


This is coolbert:

Well, I was right about the Russian web site . This site IS active. A web site devoted to the ex-Soviet and now Russian airborne forces. The VDV. Aerial descent forces [parachutists].

The site is in Russian. It would be interesting to do a BabelFish translation of this site, just out of curiosity.

During the Cold War [World War Three [WW3]], the Soviets were justifiably proud of their parachute contingents.

Suvorov actually refers to "parachute psychosis".

"To give some idea of the scale of the VDV, on maneuvers in 1934, 900 men were dropped simultaneously by parachute . . . In Belorussia in 1936 there was an air drop of 1800 troops and a landing of 5700 men with heavy weapons . . . By 1938 the Soviet Union had six airborne brigades with a total of 18,000 men . . . In 1934 these clubs had 400 parachute towers from which members made up to a half a million jumps, adding to their experience by jumps from planes and balloons. Many Western experts reckon that the Soviet Union entered the Second World War [WW2] with a million trained oparachutists. . . . The parachute is not just a weapon and a form of transport. It also acts as a filter through which courageous soldiers will pass through, but weak and cowardly men will not. The Soviet government spends enormous sums on the development of parachute jumping as a sport. This is the main base from which the airborne troops and spetsnaz are built up . . . The parachute psychosis continues."

NO LESS than seven airborne divisions existed at one time in the Soviet military. All in a special category and under the direct command of the General Staff [Stavka].

Were considered to be a force that could be deployed, with rapidity, to ANY part of the world, to perform "socialist duties".

Several blog entries have referred to apocrypha regarding the Soviet parachute corps. Such as:

* A quantity of Soviet weaponry, pre-positioned, was found by the Israeli in Lebanon that would be sufficient to equip two such Soviet airborne divisions.

* That no less than FIVE Soviet airborne divisions, in an enormous "show of force" flew from the Soviet Union to Ethiopia, disembarked their equipment, and then returned home, all JUST TO DEMONSTRATE TO THE WHOLE WORLD THAT THE SOVIET UNION HAD AN INTERNATIONAL REACH WITH ITS MILITARY FORCES!!

Look at the photo that accompanies this blog entry. This photo is taken from the web site. Shows a parachutist holding a weapon that is unfamiliar to me. Appears to be a silenced sniper rifle!!?? At least that is what I make it out to be. A weapon I am not familiar with, but a weapon mentioned as being in the inventory of the Spetsnaz troops.

There are a whole series of gallery photos that accompany the desantura web site. And they are all good. This is the sort of thing I think during the Soviet era that would be strictly forbidden. The VDV seems to have had and probably does have a very high esprit de corps.



Thursday, March 30, 2006


This is coolbert:

I did a web search using Google to see what I can come up for the Caracal radio and found almost nothing.

I did find this under the web site for Thales. But Thales of England.


"Jaguar-V was the world's first frequency-hopping military VHF radio, and was sold to many countries worldwide, earning in excess of £300 million for the (then) Racal group. The development of the frequency-hopping and synchronization algorithms, and of the ASICs that implemented these, was carried out at TRT (UK) in the late 1970s. TRT was also involved later in the development of a compact handheld version, known as Caracal."

The Jaguar-V was the first frequency hopping radio, and led to the Caracal. Seems that Caracal=CA+Racal? Racal was and perhaps is a manufacturer of top-of-the-line military radios.

Caracal is described as:

"compact handheld version, known as Caracal" [CompactAdvancedRACAL [??]].

This presumably is the Special Forces pee-watt one watt transceiver with built-in encryption??

But I cannot find a thing on the internet about the Caracal. Maybe it is a classified version of the radio that information to is limited?? I doubt that.


GRU Iraq?

This is coolbert:

Here are extracts from the entire web site page that describes the purported GRU intelligence operation in Iraq from Three years ago. I have extracted pertinent portions with my comments.

[I must say that the author of the web site seems to be all over the place. Describes himself as being a moderate but disillusioned Republican gravely disappointed with President Bush. But ALSO seems to be a Holocaust denier too. Denies that 6 million Jews were gassed and killed in atrocious manners during World War Two!!??]

"It is a matter of published record that the Russian military
intelligence had broken all of our military codes prior to the
invasion of Iraq and was reading every one of our top secret
messages during the opening phases of that military disaster."

[published records??!! Every top secret message??!! This seems to be too much!!]

"These reports were published on the internet at the time and are
certainly not a secret and most certainly it should not have taken
an allegedly reputable American media entity three calendar years
to discover this."

[well, it did take ME three years to catch up with this too!!]

"The following is the English translation of the official Russian
description of how their GRU (the GRU is Russian military
intelligence [the Main Intelligence Directorate, or GRU].
successfully broke the purportedly secret U.S. military
communications encryption. This material, plus a complete daily
compendium of secret American military messaging was published in
2003 in Russian and available to the general public. It was
published by TBR News in its entirely at the time, three years
ago! Readers can find this in our archives. BH"

[BH is the author and editor of the web site publishing this article.]

"The U.S. military used the SINCGARS (Single Channel Ground and
Airborne Radio System) frequency-hopping radios in the field.
FHSS military radios are synchronized daily to use the same
frequency modulation algorithm."

[such a system does exist and has been used for some time. Yes, this is so!!]

"Military radios in the U.S. armed forces commonly use encryption
and the frequency hopping methods provide an additional layer of
security during transmission of the encrypted signal."

[we are talking about the same technology as is used in remote phones for the home. Remote phones that work in the 900 MHZ range and above. Have both frequency hopping and encryption both. A normal scanner could NOT be used to intercept such transmissions using frequency hopping!]

"Special Forces would be the Caracal RPM 4740 manufactured by
Thales Communications of France."

[this is what is used by American Special Forces??]

"Caracal contains high-grade internal digital encryption and has an
output of 1 W."

[that is a very low level of power. One watt is NOT much.]

[I looked up Caracal and Thales on the internet. Caracal is NOT mentioned at all except for web sites that mention the same material I am talking about here. And Thales does exist, but their radio equipment as advertised seems to be limited to GPS equipment, and nothing more!!??]

"However, security afforded by frequency-hopping methods is very
dependent on strict adherence to protocols for operating such
radios. The U.S. troops and other operators of frequency-hopping
radio sets frequently disregard these protocols."

[this is true. And this is also the same sort of stuff that occurred in Vietnam. Persons disregarding protocol for security for the ease of transmission.]

"Even when proper protocols for using frequency-hopping radios are
being adhered to, interception and decryption of these signals is
still possible."

[intercept is possible. If the transmissions are encrypted, that is an additional layer of security and makes the job of the interceptor that much more difficult. Just intercepting is NOT enough. You WANT to hear and understand the transmission too!!]

"An example of such a reconnaissance device would be the FH-1
frequency-hopping interceptor manufactured by VIDEOTON-MECHLABOR
Manufacturing and Development Ltd. of Hungary."

"A special unit of the Russian military intelligence carried out a
secret operation in Iraq against the Americans. A veteran of one
of the elite units of the Russian army, a participant of the
website forum yesterday informed about that."

[I wonder if this web site is still active? Further investigation is warranted!!]

"This website is dedicated to the various commandos units and
military intelligence (GRU) of the Ministry of Defense of the
former USSR and Russia."

[desant is the Russian word for "descent". Usually associated with paratroopers.]

"Despite various details, Vladimir Kucherenko's message on secret
GRU operation in Iraq caused serious doubts. His book "The Battle
for Heavens" is written as a weird mix of historical genre and
fantasy. Besides, it is full of rather odious, nationalist-
patriotic style rhetoric. And the author failed to specify a
source of the information on this confidential operation in Iraq."

[this book is supposedly a detailed account of GRU ops in Iraq in 1991 and 2003??]

"On this background the message of the participant of the forum seems much more trustful."

"In total, since the autumn of 1958 up to the beginning of 1990
8200 Soviet military experts and advisers worked in Iraq."

[the old Iraq under Hussein and others before him was considered to be in the category of a Soviet "client state". Iraq had purchased so much Soviet equipment and had so many troops trained in the old Soviet Union to use that equipment.]

"Pavel Felgenhauer, a respected independent Moscow-based military
analyst, said Friday that the report was within the realm of

[our Pavel who has been mentioned before.]

"It's quite plausible,' he told The Associated Press.

"'He said at that time a Russian Internet site called 'The Ramzay
Files' was causing a stir in Moscow's military and diplomatic

[Ramzay is one of the names given on the web site postings of the GRU intel dope sheet!]

[that such info, if true, would be posted openly on the internet is just beyond me. That the Russians or anyone else for that matter would have the capability to "read" top secret American radio traffic would be ordinarily a secret guarded VERY CLOSELY!! Would not be a topic for discussion on the internet. In the old Soviet Union, to disclose such info would call for the death penalty!!]

[and, once again, intercepting frequency hopping transmissions is not enough. If the transmissions were further encrypted, you WOULD NOT be able to "read them". "Reading them" says that very high level encryption methods such as Advanced Encryption Standard and such are subject to being "broken". This would be unanticipated!!]



This is coolbert:

More Dope on the GRU Iraq War Dope.

It seems that I am not the only one that has noticed the web sites detailing the Iraq War supposed intelligence passed by the Russian GRU [military intelligence] to the Iraqi. NOR would I have ever supposed that I was the only one to pay notice.

It did strike me as strange that such info would HAVE EVER BEEN posted on the web or made public knowledge in ANY manner. Period!

Go here to see what others have to say about the subject.

More on this later.


Wednesday, March 29, 2006


This is coolbert:

  Charles Taylor Update.

Here is the latest on the antics of Charles Taylor. When he found out he was to be extradited from Nigeria for war crimes and crimes against humanity, Charles went on the lam. Left his palatial sea-side villa in Nigeria, where he lived in comfortable exile, and fled for his life. Was "missing". But has been "found".

It appears that Charles was on the way to Chad. Possible from there onto Libya. Charles and others from various west African nations were "graduates" of a school for revolutionaries run by the infamous Libyan Colonel Khadaffi. Birds of a feather will flock together, goes the saying!!

NOW, for the extradition, trial, hopefully conviction and sentencing. Too bad the international community is so squeamish about the death penalty. Persons such as Charles deserve it and big time too!!


Big Red.

This is coolbert:

During the period of the "Cold War" [1945-1990[, NATO military planners had to deal with the POTENTIAL nightmare situation of "Big Red moves west". A Soviet invasion and conquest of western Europe.

Such an attack, as planned by the Soviet General Staff [Stavka] would have included massive numbers of tanks, massed. [I use the term massive and massed here for emphasis. Such a use of redundancy is valid in this case!!]

We are talking about an attack of Soviet tank divisions, Soviet tank armies, and groupings of Soviet tank armies. Tank units of colossal scale. All for the purpose of rupturing NATO defenses and exploiting these ruptures.

The goal of course would be Clausewitzian in nature. Invade the enemy's country, defeat the enemy's military, and break the will of the enemy populace to further resist!

Soviet planners were enamored of the tank and it's uses:

"The tank army [normally would consist of three tank divisions and one mechanized infantry division] is brought up to a breach in the enemy defenses only when a real breakthrough has been achieved and once the Front's forces have room for maneuver . . . A tank army is like a rushing flood, tearing its way through a gap in a dyke, smashing and destroying everything it its path."


"he [the Commander in Chief of a Strategic direction] brings his striking force, his Group of Tank Armies, into action . . . This Group of Tank Armies consists of two Tank Armies."

Suvorov speaks almost lovingly of the tank and the smell associated with tanks:

"Tanks have a quite distinctive smell about them. It cannot be confused with anything else. Do you like the smell of tanks? I do too. The smell of a tank is the smell of metal, of enormously powerful engines, of field tracks. Tanks roll into towns from the woods and fields, bringing with them the lingering smell of leaves and fresh grass. The smell of tanks is the smell of wide open spaces and of power. It is a smell that intoxicates. Like the smell of wine and blood."

As for what Soviet tanks would mean for the populace of invaded NATO nations, Suvorov is again eloquent:

"The city seethes, seized with fear and indignation, and along its streets thunder column upon column of tanks . . . As the drivers change up, the engines throw out clouds of dense black smoke . . . an old man, weeping, with shaggy gray beard, shouts something and shakes his fist."

NATO commanders had of course the option, with permission, to use NUCLEAR weapons in an attempt to stop a Soviet attack on western Europe. But this had consequences that everyone wanted to avoid. The belief was that even using "smaller" tactical atomic weapons on the battlefield would run the risk of escalation to a full-scale global thermonuclear war.

NATO commanders had to be given other options. Defensive weaponry that could stem the advance of Soviet massed tank formations.

Considerable thought MUST have given to this topic. A lot of anti-tank weapons WERE developed that gave the NATO forces a tremendous anti-tank capability.

Among the many weapons available to NATO that were to be used in an anti-tank capacity were:

* Maverick.

* Hellfire.

* TOW, Dragon, and LAW. [these three were infantry weaponry that gave the average foot soldier an ability to engage and destroy Soviet tanks.]

* Copperhead. [an anti-tank round fired in an indirect mode from a conventional artillery piece.]

* The A-10 USAF ground attack aircraft. [equipped with a 30 mm cannon that was a real tank killer!!]

* My favorite, the Rockeye. A "dumb" cluster-bomb-unit [CBU] that would "rain" 247 bomblets on the target. Each bomblet was a shaped charge that could penetrate 7 1/2 inches of armor.

The Rockeye was to "rain" anti-tank munitions on the tops of the tanks. Where they are most vulnerable. Have the least thickness of armor. Soviet tanks carried extra fuel and ammo in compartments that were relatively lightly armored compared to the rest of the tank, the fuel and extra ammo detonating when hit by Rockeye bomblets DROPPED FROM ABOVE!!

If the bomblets hit the engine compartment of the tank, the tank would become immobile and could not advance further. This is a valid counter to a tank. Rendering the tank immobile is almost as worthy as destroying the tank outright.

So important was the Rockeye that it was put on a list of weapons NOT TO BE EXPORTED, PERIOD!!

[it was even suggested that in the years prior to Gulf War Two, that if Saddam Hussein made offensive overtures against his neighbors, B-2 bombers ALONE, dropping, prodigious numbers of Rockeye bombs upon Hussein's Revolutionary Guards tank formations, could forestall any attack!!]

Could the NATO forces stopped the expected massive Soviet tank offensive in western Europe using ONLY conventional weapons like the Maverick, Hellfire, etc!!??

[this of course assumes that the Soviets would NOT HAVE initiated combat against NATO without using nuclear weapons FIRST!!]

Yes, but with great difficulty. Hell, what is there that is easy in this world??!!



Tuesday, March 28, 2006


This is coolbert:

There are whole bunch of M113 APC variations already developed that could be used to "round-out" the vehicle mix for my Ghurkha IBCT.

The entire concept of having an "all-tracked" unit has supposedly been contemplated and attempted, without success. Perhaps just NOT enough thought was given to the subject. Expedient means were more easily and cheaply implemented. With what degree of effectiveness I just cannot say?

Among those vehicles are:

* M58 Wolf Smoke Generator Carrier

* M113 Armored Medical Evacuation Vehicle AMEV

* M548 Cargo Carrier

* M577 Command Post Carrier

* M981 Fire Support Team Vehicle (FISTV)

* M1059 Lynx Smoke Generator Carrier

* M1068 Standard Integrated Command Post System (SICPS) Carrier

* M1108 Universal Carrier

Plus this "future concept" useful for engineers:

* M113A3+ Engineering Squad Vehicle (ESV)

"The M113A3+ ESV is the only affordable solution that meets the Combat Engineer Squad requirements to transport an eight man engineer squad and all of their equipment while providing mobility and survivability equal to the maneuver force."

How this mix of M113 APC variations can be organized into the TO&E of combat support and combat service support for the Ghurkha IBCT is not clear at this time. Some thought will have to be given to the matter.



This is coolbert:

The use and utility of smoke as a weapon of war is "obvious to even the most casual of observers" - - Howard Cossell.

Perhaps the most obvious use of smoke is as an obscurant. A smoke screen used to hide troops and shield troops from enemy observation.

"obscure - - 1 : to make dark, dim, or indistinct 2 : to conceal or hide by or as if by covering

Almost all self-respecting main battle tanks of the world powers, and even those of lesser powers, are all equipped with built-in smoke dispensers. Grenade launchers that "pop" smoke to conceal the tank from enemy observation. The thought is simple. If the enemy cannot see you, they cannot kill you.

The use of smoke for obfuscation is most important in the age of precision guided weapons [PGM] such as the Maverick [laser guided], or the Dragon [ultra-violet beam] variety of anti-tank-guided-missile [ATGM].

"ob·fus·cate - - 1 a : DARKEN b : to make obscure 2 : CONFUSE

The smoke of course, not only conceals the target, but dissipates and diffuses the guiding laser or ultra-violet beam in such a manner that the missile being guided goes "off course".

You may ask, "well, to what extent does smoke degrade the effectiveness of enemy fire??"

It has been determined that by putting smoke on YOURSELF, you reduce the effectiveness of enemy fire by 1/4 [25 %].

By putting smoke on the ENEMY, you reduce the effective of enemy fire 3/4 [75 %].

Historically, smoke has been employed sometimes on a basis that can only be referred to as "Biblical proportions".

Just prior to attempting the crossing of the Oder river in 1945, enroute to attacking the German positions at Seelowe, the Soviet General Zhukov employed fast moving fighter aircraft to lay a dense smoke screen along a THREE HUNDRED MILE FRONT, AND DID SO IN MINUTES!!

[this must have been done by injecting oil into the carburetor of the fighter planes. The oil, when burned, creates smoke!!]

When marching south from Manchuria to attack United Nations forces in Korea [1950], the initial advance of 400,000 Communist Chinese troops was screened by smoke from massive forest fires deliberately set to obscure observation from American aerial surveillance and photographic reconnaissance. This method DID work. The entire Chicom force was able to move south without detection!!

It can be suggested from some quarters that forward-looking-infra-red [FLIR] optical detectors [goggles, cameras, viewers, etc.] have negated the concealment capability of smoke.

FLIR is amazingly effective and impressive. Allows the user to "see" through the smoke and detect the target.

HOW effective and impressive??

It is reputed that during the Gulf War ONE, an Abrams tank was able, using FLIR, to "see" an Iraqi T-72 tank THROUGH A SAND DUNE, AIM, AND FIRE A SABOT ROUND THROUGH THE SAND DUNE, DESTROYING THE IRAQI TANK!!

[the heat from the engine of the T-72 must have given it away!!]

Keep in mind that FLIR, like other devices that allow the user to "see" in the dark, are now available, cheaply too, to almost anyone in the world that wants one. Even nations that have only an elementary industrial capability can possess and use FLIR!

Strangely enough, U.S. forces currently have a capability to defeat enemy use of FLIR. This can be categorized as "smart smoke". Smoke with vaporized oil particulats or graphite flakes CAN defeat existing FLIR. American forces already have this in THEIR inventory. Credit is to be given to the innovators that thought of "smart smoke" [that is what I call it!!.

I am wondering if the current U.S. military HAS the capability to lay down a smoke screen ala' Zhukov at the Oder crossing?

U.S. ground forces certainly can "lay down" a smoke screen, but NOT on the scale of say an Oder operation? Both the current Hummvee and APC M113 can be configured for a smoke capability. But smoke can be used only on a limited basis. I guess that is considered to be adequate. The use of smoke on a monumental basis is just not required in the minds of U.S. planners.

I know that UH-1 [Huey] helicopters DID have such a capability. Does a smoke screen capability still exist with say the Blackhawk helicopter?? I just don't know.

I am unsure about the Air Force. Perhaps such a capability has not been appreciated or even thought of. Being able to "lay down" a smoke screen using fast mover aircraft I hope is a consideration that is available to American forces. My inclination tells me otherwise.


Monday, March 27, 2006

Charles Taylor.

This is coolbert:

I see that Charles Taylor, the former dictator/warlord of Liberia, and the instigator of war in Sierra Leone, is now in custody in Nigeria. Was forced to leave Liberia as part of an accord bringing "peace" to that part of west Africa.

I use that word peace in a figurative sense.

The forces of Taylor used murder, rape, and mutilation as "methods" during their various campaigns. Taylor is wanted for crimes against humanity. Seventeen counts to be exact. Each count carrying the sentence of life in prison.

The taking into custody of Taylor is in line with similar arrests and trials of other "bad guys" of recent history. Such as Milosevic and Hussein.

IN the cases of the latter two, things [trial for war crimes and crimes against humanity] did not and have not gone as planned.

In the case of Milosevic, the former dictator of Yugoslavia was under arrest for five years and on trial FOR FOUR YEARS. For four years on trial without resolution to his case??!! How could this be??!! A trial takes THAT long??!! And Milosevic died a natural death and is now gone from the scene, without a verdict being reached. The point of a trial is now moot!!

As for Hussein, well, it seems that the man has TAKEN OVER THE TRIAL AND THE COURT!! Disrupts and makes a mockery of the proceedings. It SEEMS THE MAN IS STILL IN CHARGE AND CANNOT BE CONTROLLED!!??

This is not what the victorious parties at the end of World War Two [WW2] had in mind when the Nuremberg Trials were held. Bringing the Nazi war criminals to justice in a fair and equitable manner. And quick and speedy too. With swift and sure punishment. Hanging!! For the top Nazi war criminals, the whole trial and punishment took about two years max!! And that was that. And no one shed a tear. Rather the opposite, the general consensus was that justice was done.

It was felt at the time [circa 1947] that the Nuremberg Trials would serve as a model for future prosecutions of perpetrators of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

This HAS NOT turned out to be the case!!

For some reason, there DOES seem to be a hesitancy to try bad guys of this world for their heinous actions. On occasion, what can only be described as desultory action is taken, but that is about all.

Why this is I am not entirely clear about!!??

And for the murder, rape, and mutilation of about 500,000 persons, what would be the maximum sentence Taylor could get?? Life and that is that!!?? Is that justice for crimes of such magnitude??

I think not!!


Sunday, March 26, 2006


This is coolbert:

Evidently there has already BEEN a degree of ferment in the area of TO&E for what are called intermediate brigade combat teams [IBCT]. Independent units that have an organic combat capability and are readily deployable.

Using the M113 APC as the base vehicle for such an IBCT is not new
either. This has and is being gone over, right now, in Iraq. Has created a lot of interest in some circles.

It would be suggested that this is a blast from the past and is not to be taken
seriously, using the M113.

The way to go for the "experts" is the Stryker vehicle, currently the base vehicle for the Army's current concept of things.

Anyhow, here is from the StrategyPage web site a forum entry on the subject of the TO&E of a M113 equipped IBCT.

I will contrast at least my combat arms ideas of such a brigade with this TO&E as proposed.

Here it is:

"I'm gonna go ahead and post a watered down verison of my ideas
for the TO&E of a M-113 equipped IBCT.

Each company contains:

3 platoons @ 4 M-113 infanty carriers and about 40 dismounts.

[this would be a rifle platoon of four squads, ten men ["dismounts"] per squad. My proposal was a platoon would consist of three rifle squads of ten "dismounts"]

1 M-113 carrying 7 man sniper team, commanded by company XO.

[I had not included a sniper team my TO&E, but then my TO&E was a work in progress.]

1 Fire Support Platoon with:

Mortar Section-2 M125s with 81mm mortar.

Mobile Gun Platoon- 4 M113s with 90mm cannons in turrents( similar
vehicle used by South Korea).

[my fire support platoon, called a weapons platoon, would have the same number of M113, but task tailored, i.e., .50 caliber MG, 40 mm cannon, 81 mm mortar, ATGM.]

Also each company includes:

1 command and control vehicle.

one Fire Support Vehicle to call in air and artillery fire,

one M113 based ambulance.

and a few trucks and Hummvees for logistics and utility roles.

[Trucks and Hummvees were not a consideration for me. I wanted to go totally with all M113 APC and not wheeled vehicles.]

3 companies form 1 battalion.

[I wanted four companies per battalion. So that an "infantry square" concept can be employed by the brigade.]

Each battalion also features:

a repair section with 4-6 repair and recovery vehicles.

additional EW and C2 vehicles.

[EW=electronic warfare, C2=communications and command.]

a larger medical section with 4 ambulances.

and a mortar platoon with 4 M125s mounting 120mm mortars.

[the 120 mm mortar would be found in the weapons company of each battalion in my TO&E.]

Also, trucks, HUMMVEES, and other vehicles as needed.

[again, the desire is to have an all tracked brigade of APC's, no supporting wheeled vehicles.]

3 such battalions are the core of the IBCT.

[my TO&E was to have four battalions of combat arms, again, so as to use the "infantry square" concept.]

Also attached are:

[attachment here is not clear. Is this for each battalion or at the brigade level?]

1 Tank Destroyer Company with:

3 platoons with 3 M901 ITVs (improved TOW Vehicles).

[it is not clear if this means three platoons with three ITV's per platoon. [nine total.]]

and one FSV.

[In my TO&E, ITV's would be found in the battalion weapons company or the brigade fire support battalion.]

1 Cavalry Squadron with:

[a squadron is a battalion size unit. My cavalry unit was a troops strength unit, i.e., company sized.]

3 Recon Troops with:

[a recon troop is a company sized unit.]

13 M113s .

1 Heavy Company Task Force with:

2-tank platoons with 4 Abrams per.

1-mech infantry platoon with 4 Bradleys.

1-headquaters element with 1 Abrams and 1 Bradley.

1 Surveillance troop with:

UAV's and UGV's, trucks, HUMMVEES, and a few M113s to carry equipment.

[UAV=unattended aerial vehicle, UGV=unattended ground vehicle].

[my cavalry troop would be strictly APC with attachments for fire support from brigade as necessary. NO gadgets and geegaws for the Ghurkha cavalry troop would be contemplated. Ghurkhas rely upon the human factor, NOT the technological factor!!]]

2 engineer companies with:

M113s, bulldozers, dump trucks, earhmovers, bridgelaying equipment, Hummvees, and trucks.

[Engineers I have not given consideration to.]

MP company with:

23 Uparmored Hummvees and 10 Armored Security Vehicles.

[MP's I have not given consideration to.]

1 Artillery battalion with:

3 howitzer batteries with:

[a battery is a company sized unit.]

8 M198 155mm howitzers (to be replaced with M777 light weight howitzers when they enter service).

[This is eight tubes per battery?? It is not clear?]

[these are towed howitzers. NOT the Paladin self-propelled variety I would prefer for my IBCT!!]

1 rocket battery with 8 HIMARS truck mounted Artillery Rocket Launchers.

[I had made no consideration for HIMARS as it it truck mounted.]

Also includes M113s to carry supplies, C2 vehicles, trucks and Hummers, Firefinder radar section, and other support units.

Air defense company with:

[an air defense company is more correctly called a battery.]

16 Avenger air defense vehicles.

[Avenger is the Stinger mounted on a Hummer.]

10 2-man, man portable Stinger teams [MANPADS].

[it is not mentioned how the AD battery is configured, i.e., how many platoons of how many squads!]

1 Logistics battalion with:

trucks, Hummvees, and M113 cargo carriers.

Also, Civil Affairs, administrative, command and other attached units.

[I have not given consideration to logistics, a support battalion, civil affairs and such. NOT YET!!]

This force is considerable easier to deploy than a heavy brigade and even a Stryker Brigade given the M113's greater transportability.

Plus the force is much more survivable and lethal than MVL [??] or Dingo equipped forces.

Also all but the 90mm gun carrier version are in/have been in US service, similar gun carrier designs have served with other nations though. This simplifies logistics and training.

All M113s have been retrofitted to M113A3 standard including:

* "external fuel tanks, more powerful engine, improved tracks and suspension, spall liners, and provisons for appligue armor."

[improved M113's of the type currently being fielded in Iraq right now. Including slat and applique armor and a souped engine which will be required for the increased weight commensurate with such additional equipment.]

* "Also the vehicles have receieved much of the sensor and computing technology of the Strykers and 'digital' heavy forces already in service."

[to include a CLAWS type RWCS?]

Note: The ICVs are armed with one man powered turrents fitted with a .50 cal MG and a Mk 109 4o mm grenade launcher. This combines firepower with lower logistical burden.

The Cavalry Vehicles are fitted with 25mm cannons in low profile turrents, upgraded sensors and communications, and 4 scouts. They also function as direct fire support vehicles with their chain guns."

[my cavalry APC's would be armed with only the .50 caliber, additional 7.62 mm MG, and forty mm cannon.]


Friday, March 24, 2006


This is coolbert.

Pavel Felgenhauer.

I looked up Pavel Felgenhauer by doing a Google search and found a lot of stuff for him posted on the web.

It seems that Pavel is a self-described independent military analyst with a lot of contacts in the Russian military.

Here is just a sampling of sites for Pavel:

At one time, there was a Soviet citizen named Vitali Lui that went by the nom de plume' of Victor Louis. When the Soviets wanted to confuse the western world, they had this Victor, posing as a journalist, "leak" vital information from Soviet leaders that Victor said, "he had been told in confidence".

This Pavel presumably is NOT the same type of shill as was Victor Louis. More of a western news analyst specializing in military affairs.

This I would hope is so!




This is coolbert:

Speak of the devil. I have been talking about the purported free-lance GRU [Russian military intelligence] operation in Baghdad three years ago now. "Independent" reporting on the war.

And today, what is in the headlines?

"Report: Russia gave Iraq info on U.S. war plan
Russians got intelligence from U.S. military command"

This is from MSNBC. See the web page that has the full information.

It does seem that a GRU unit was active in Baghdad before and during the war.

"WASHINGTON - At the onset of the war in Iraq, Russian intelligence intercepted top-secret U.S. military communications detailing plans to attack Baghdad, U.S. military officials told NBC News on Friday.

It is believed the Russians received their information via electronic eavesdropping"

Electronic eavesdropping. Sounds familiar, does it not??

"Pavel Felgenhauer, a respected independent Moscow-based military analyst, said Friday that a Russian military intelligence unit, known by its abbreviation GRU, was actively working in Iraq at the time of the U.S. invasion of Iraq."

I will have to look up this Pavel and see what is what about him.

Anyhow, what particular information was supposedly passed from the Russians to the Iraqi beast??

These particular pieces of intelligence:

* "That the movement of U.S. troops into southern Iraq from Kuwait was a diversion. (In fact, it was the main avenue of attack, supported by special forces entering from Jordan and paratroopers flying into northern Iraq.)"

* "That the ground assault on Baghdad would not begin until the Army'’s 4th Infantry Division was in place, around April 15. (In fact, the 4th Infantry, whose originally planned invasion route from Turkey was blocked by the Turkish government, was not yet on Iraqi territory when the Baghdad ground assault began April 7. Thus, by design or chance, the information from the Russians actually reinforced a U.S. military deception effort.)"

* "That the main focus of U.S. ground forces moving toward Baghdad from the southwest was the area around the city of Karbala. (This was true. After crossing a bridge over the Euphrates River outside of Karbala, the 3rd Infantry Division had a clear path to the Iraqi capital and Saddam’s chances of stopping the assault had ended.)"

* "That U.S. troops moving through southern Iraq would not attempt to occupy cities but instead bypass them. (This was true and was a central feature of an invasion plan that stressed speed and tactical surprise.)"

Does this not look familiar? Where has this been seen before?

Contrast this particular piece of intelligence with the GRU dope sheet [iraqwar_ru_reports] items.

"That the movement of U.S. troops into southern Iraq from Kuwait was a diversion." - - MSNBC report.

"Russian Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU) believes that all the talk about the attack on Basra is nothing more than disinformation designed compliment a diversionary strike to pin down large Iraqi forces around this city." - - iraqwar_ru_reports.

"Based on the intercepted US military communications the Russian military intelligence believes that the US command is attempting to create a false impression of a pending massive ground attack on Basra." - - iraqwar_ru_reports.

It would seem that the free-lancers in Baghdad DID have available to them some pretty good intelligence. Why this was if they were ex-governmental employees is just not clear. And why put this sort of stuff on the web for all to see??!!

More intrigue.


Thursday, March 23, 2006


This is coolbert:

This is a very serendipitous discovery of mine. Found this on the web site just now.

Allows one to understand, in a small way, the fevered mind of the jihadi.

From the dhimmi site: [dhimmis are of course non-Muslims that behave in an obsequious manner so as not to OFFEND Muslim sensibilities!!]

"Muslims, just like Japanese businessmen, or faddists at American business schools, look to Best Practices. And what are Best Practices in Islam? They are the practices, the acts, the words, the silences, of Muhammad himself, uswa hasana, al-insan al-kamil. If he did it, if he said it, if he permitted others to do or say it by remaining silent and not condemning or contradicting, why then it was right for All Time, for All Mankind. That is what Believers in Islam mean when they talk about Best Practices. They abhor the new -- bida, or innovation -- but not in the trivial sense of new gewgaws, the products of others, which of course may and should be exploited for the well being of Islam, the furtherance of Islam."

[an atomic bomb to set off in NYC of course would NOT be forbidden, I would assume!!]

What is one of the Best Practices that the fever minded ones believe should be followed? Eating with the fingers from the communal food bowl of the umma [Islamic nation]. According to Saadi Yusef, who I have blogged on before:

"Now, for the Arab population, there's really no reason for them to use terrorism. The real terrorism would be to go into the schools and begin to educate people and begin to bring them to a level of more scientific knowledge. You fight for something like this. They want to really apply a religion that's different from the religion of Muhammad. For example, in Algeria in certain places, if you're sitting in a chair and you're eating with a fork, what you're doing is considered to be against Islam. You're the enemy of Islam. Because the Prophet Muhammad didn't eat with a fork -- you have to eat with your fingers!"

Eat with your FINGERS. And DO SO because Muhammad did not eat with a fork. And ONLY eat with your fingers.

Whoa boy!

Well, taken in the context of the cartoons, this is just one more example of how the jihadi thinks.

[Saadi needs no introduction. He was a revolutionary who fought what he believed to be his Islamic nation. He cannot be called a stooge of the west or anything like that!!]

Need I say more?

This of course would be categorized in the "know your enemy" category.



Ann Curry.

This is coolbert:

I see that the distinguished TV journalist [hostess?] Ann Curry has made a trip to Darfur. In the Sudan. The scene of genocidal carnage for several years now.

Arab marauding militias called the janjaweed have conducted a Sudanese government sponsored campaign of "cleansing" against black tribesmen [tribesmen who are also Muslim] of Darfur.

This "cleansing" has been the subject of several blog entries by myself.

Hard to have anything but sympathy for the victims of the genocide. And that is what it is, genocide.

[the destruction of a people, in PART or in WHOLE is how genocide is defined].

My original blog entry on Darfur was almost two years ago now. So it would seem that Ann Curry and her crew were a little bit behind on the learning curve. But better than not at all.

My previous blog entries on the situation in Darfur revolved around three topics. All germane to the atrocity currently being pepetrated even now, as we speak.

These topics were:

* Rape as a weapon of war.

* The difficulty if not impossibility in getting help to the victims.

* And the use of CRIMINALS by the Sudanese government in perpetrating the genocidal campaign.

Since my original blog entries, and the arousal, to some degree, of the international community, it seems little HAS BEEN DONE for the tribesmen of Darfur.

I use the word tribesmen figuratively here.

From what I see in the Ann Curry piece, the men are all dead. The refugees are almost without exception women and a whole bunch of small children. The men are either dead or unaccounted for [dead??].

I also observe a scorched earth policy being used by the Sudanese bad guys.

Here I use the word "scorch" literally and not figuratively.

The very ground is burned black from the arson of the janjaweed. NOTHING but bare blackened earth is left. Pathetic to see.

And roads are more or less impassable. Aid, if on the way, WILL have a hard time getting to the victims. NOT to mention military help. This situation is both impossible and pitiful at the same time.


GRU Iraq War Reports.

This is coolbert:

Again, I am on the subject of the purported GRU [Russian military intelligence] group that posted on the internet intelligence reports during the earliest days of the Iraq War II. From three years ago this month.
These "experts" describe themselves as being:

"All the 'updates' came out from a compact group formed a few years ago in the framework of a special service. The group used to work for the government for a long time but all its members have left the service and now act as an independent analytical group that has kept some capabilities."

And further, about the sources of information for the reports:

"This gives an answer to the most common question – about the sources of our information . . . . Our updates were not genuine materials from any of Russian or other special services, but rather an 'intellectual product' of the group itself, product of its operative, informational and analytical abilities. But compiling the updates we used materials available from our friends from special information structures."

This would seem to indicate that the persons comprising the "compact group" are free-lancers having a GRU or similar background. And are either developing the info themselves for analysis through informants in Iraq OR intercepts of coalition radio communications done BY THEMSELVES.

As to the sources of info used by the "compact group", I have highlighted those sources as best indicated in the reports. Radio intercepts provide the vast bulk of the sources, as will be seen.


April 7, 2003, 2400hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST)

"According to communications between American commanders the status of least 15 men is unknown."

April 7, 2003, 1914hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST)

"According to intercepted radio communications up to 5 marines were killed, at least 12 wounded. 3 APC and 1 tank were destroyed."

April 5, 2003, 1357hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST)

"After analysis of intercepted radio communications and reports of American commanders it was specified that at the airport there were only parts of the 1st brigade troops, up to 2 enforced battalions with the help of a self-propelled artillery division 3 thousand soldiers and officers strong, 60 tanks and about 20 guns."

"The morning messages about the town Kalak captured have not been confirmed yet, and according to the radio surveillance data the actions only take place at the approaches of the town"

April 4, 2003, 1507hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST)

"According to electronic surveillance the coalition command in Qatar order the attacking US forces to halt on at least three occasions."

"Intercepted radio communications indicate at least three killed or wounded US troops."

"According to radio surveillance, the coalition forces were forced out of the town and thrown back 3-5 kilometers as the result of a three-hour-long firefight."

"Radio surveillance reveals Iraqi resistance units fighting on the territories occupied by the British."

"A Kuwaiti radio source reported an attack last night resulting in a fire on one of the oil wells where the previous fire was just recently extinguished."

[This would be presumably a non-military, open channel, unsecure radio source.]

"Radio surveillance indicates that yesterday coalition troops conducted a massive operation in the town to find the resistance members."

"The US Brig. Gen. Osman, who commands the US troops in this area, told one of the Pentagon officials during a phone conversation: 'for them [the Kurds] to move forward we literally have to throw a stack of dollars in front of them!'"

[This compact group seems to have a lot of disdain and antipathy for the Kurds!!]

[This was a phone conversation with the Pentagon by a General officer in the CLEAR!!??]

April 3, 2003, 1301hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST)

"The radio surveillance units reported the loss of another plane to the north of Baghdad."

April 2, 2003, 1335hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST)

"Intercepted radio communications show that the coalition troops are retreating in small groups and have no exact information about their own losses"

April 1, 2003, 1404hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST)

"Intercepted radio communications show that one US APC was destroyed and at least 5 soldiers were killed and wounded."

"Radio surveillance indicates that during the morning hours of today there were 5 medevac helicopter flights to this area."

"This was reported by one of the US journalist located in this area during a phone conversation with the editor."

[U.S. journalist making report using unsecure open radio channel??]

March 31, 2003, 1828hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST)

"At the same time morning radio intercepts uncovered a large US military convoy moving around the Razzaza Lake."

"Intercepted radio communications indicate that the Marines engineering units are ordered to build a pontoon crossing up the stream from An-Nasiriya and move up to three battalions of Marines and troops from the 82nd Airborne Division to the left bank of the Euphrates for a future strike in the rear of the An-Nasiriya garrison."

"This conversation was taped by the journalist and sent to the editor via a cellular phone network."

[This would indicate that journalists are sending reports, again, over unsecure channels after gleaning information. Open channels subject to intercept and exploitation.]

"Based on the radio intercepts and internal information networks of the US field hospitals as of this morning the coalition losses include no less than 100 killed US servicemen and at least 35 dead British soldiers."

[Internal networks? Unsecure medical commo?]

March 30, 2003, 2042hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST)

"According to radio intercepts, the coalition commander Gen. Tommy Franks has visited the US forces near Karabela."

"During a personal phone conversation with another serviceman in the US one participant of this meeting called this technical state 'depressing'. According to him "...a third of our equipment can be dragged to a junk yard right now. We are holding up only thanks to the round-the-clock maintenance. The real heroes on the front lines are not the Marines but the 'ants' from the repair units. If it wasn't for them we'd be riding camels by now..."

[International communications that the participants thought to be "secure" and unimportant were anything but!! Perhaps this was an Intelsat phone commo?]

"Based on the intercepted radio communications, reports from both sides and other intelligence data, since the beginning of the war the coalition lost 15-20 tanks, around 40 armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles, more than 50 military trucks and up to 10 helicopters."

"Radio intercepts show that 2 Marines were killed and 5 were wounded."

"In a closed radio address to the coalition troops the coalition command asked the soldiers to show 'patience and restrain' and 'not to let loose their emotions and feelings of anger'"

[A closed address that was monitored??]

"since yesterday morning all phone and Internet lines used by the coalition troops to maintain contact with relatives in the US and Europe have been shut down at the division level and below."

[So the Russians and presumably others are able to intercept phone and internet commo used by soldiers for "private" usage.]

March 29, 2003, 0924hrs MSK (GMT +4 DST)

"The order for the attack will be given by the coalition commander Gen.
Tommy Franks, who, according to intercepted radio communications, will personally inspect the troops during the next several hours."

[This sort of intelligence can get a commander killed.]

"Intercepted radio communications show that the helicopter was heavily damaged in a combat mission."

"Radio intercepts show that in this attack the Iraqis shot down a British helicopter."

"According to the report, analysis of the television broadcasts, intercepted radio communications, interrogations of Iraqi POWs show that psychologically the Iraqis are now 'more stable and confident' that they were during the last days before the war."

[Psychological evaluations of Iraqi prisoners from video broadcasts.]

"Radio communications intercepted during the last five days suggest that the coalition is using Israeli airfield for conducting night air strikes against Iraq."

"[Russian] radio intercept and radar units observe increased intensity of radio communications coming from the Jordanian air force and air defense communication centers during such overflights, as well as changes in the operating modes of the US Army 'Patriot' tracking radars deployed in Jordan.

March 28, 2003, 1448hrs MSK (GMT +3)

"According to the latest intercepted radio communications, the command of the coalition group of forces near Karabela requested at least 12 more hours to get ready to storm the town."

"Latest radio intercepts from this area show that under a continuous artillery and aerial bombardment the Iraqis have begun to gradually withdraw their forces toward Basra."

March 27, 2003, 2321hrs MSK (GMT +3)

"Intercepted radio communications indicate that tomorrow we should expect a powerful attack by the coalition."

March 27, 2003, 1425hrs MSK (GMT +3)

"Intercepted radio communications show that at around 0615hrs this morning the lead of a flight of two A-10 ground attack planes detected a convoy of armored vehicles."

"Yesterday one of the Russian intelligence sources obtained information about a secret agreement reached between the US and the Turkish government."

[This could very well be a HUMINT source.]

March 26, 2003, 1230hrs MSK (GMT +3)

"radio intercepts indicate, all available repair units have been deployed to the front."

"as intercepted radio communications show, the coalition command is trying to establish the whereabouts of more than 500 of its troops that fell behind their units"

March 25, 2003, 1230hrs MSK (GMT +3)

"According to intercepted radio communications the coalition advance will be tied to the end of the sand storm and is planned to take place during the night of March 26-27."

"there is information about two coalition combat vehicles destroyed by landmines."

[Source of information not specified!!]

"According to radio intelligence at least two US soldiers were killed and no less than six US soldiers were wounded."

"According to satellite reconnaissance it seems likely that the Iraqis had time to remove the captured Apache Longbow attack helicopter of the 11th Aviation Regiment."

[This is from imagery from outer space?]

"There is plenty of intelligence information indicating that so far the US electronic reconnaissance was unable to locate and to penetrate the Iraqi command's communications network, which is an indication of the network's high technological sophistication."

[Information from unspecified sources.]

March 24, 2003, 0800hrs MSK (GMT +3)

"'We can only thank God for having air dominance!' said the commander
of the US 15th Marines Exp. Corps Col. Thomas Waldhauser in a private
conversation with one of the CNN reporters. Later the CNN journalist
cited the Colonel in a phone conversation with his editor. The conversation
was intercepted."

[Journalist betrays confidence of the private conversation by using unsecure means of communication.]

"According to the intercepted radio traffic, the US forces have sustained up to 40 killed, up to 10 captured and up to 200 wounded during the fighting near An-Nasiriya."

Around 2300hrs (MSK, GMT +3) March 23

"Radio intercepts and satellite images show that the town was under constant bombardment throughout out the night."

[Satellite images available to those in Baghdad?]

"Intercepted radio communications indicate that today the British command will attempt to regain the lost ground after spending the night reinforcing their units on Fao with two additional marine infantry battalions."

"Intercepted radio traffic indicates another lost coalition plane this morning."

March 23, 2003, 1200hrs MSK (GMT +3)

"Satellite and signals intelligence show that both sides actively employ armored vehicles in highly mobile attacks and counterattacks."

"According to intercepted radio communications, the British marine infantry units in defensive positions on the Fao peninsula have requested emergency air and artillery support after being attacked by superior Iraqi forces"

"Other intercepted radio traffic suggests that, as the British and US forces bend the Basra - An-Najaf line of defense, the Iraqi command will pull back its main forces to the Al Ammara - Ad-Divaniya line."

"According to radio intercepts during today's night the coalition begun airdropping troops in northern Iraq from airfields in Turkey and Jordan."

"Russian military intelligence has uncovered a range of facts pointing to a separate arrangement between the top leadership of Jordan and the US military command."

[A range of facts from what sources?]

"Available information indicates that coalition special ops units, including up to 400 troops and their command headquarters, have been deployed to the Jordanian Zarka military base and to the home base of the Jordan's 71st special ops brigade."

[Available information from what sources?]

"Intercepted coalition radio traffic shows that most of the bombing attacks against Baghdad are carried out by the US strategic aviation and by sea-launched long-range cruise missiles."

"[Russian] radio intercept units have reported the loss of two coalition planes."

"intercepted radio communications
show that the actual number of coalition casualties is at least 55-70 troops killed and no less than 200 wounded."

March 22, 2003, 1300hrs MSK (GMT +3)

Additional information about the situation in the primary combat areas in southern Iraq became available by 1300hrs (Moscow time, GMT +3).

[Additional information from what sources is not specified.]

"Intercepted radio communications indicate that during the morning period of March 22 the US forces lost 10-15 tanks destroyed or disabled and up to 30 other armored vehicles."

"Our sources report that during the early morning hours in southwestern Iraq in the vicinity of Akashat the Iraqi forces have engaged and surrounded a tactical paratroop unit of the 101st Airborne Division."

[Sources not specified.]

"[Russian] radio intercept units report that one the US attack helicopters providing close air support was shot down."

March 22, 2003, 0800hrs MSK (GMT +3)

"Information received during the last night is very contradictory."

[Source of information not specified!!]

"According to intelligence reports, at Umm Qasr American and British forces have sustained 10 killed and around 40 wounded soldiers and officers."

[Sources of intelligence reports is unspecified.]

"According to intercepted radiocommunications,
this division was fighting as a part of the 3rd Army Corp (Al-Nasiriya)."

"Analysis of the video footage of the captured Iraqis, distributed by the coalition press-service, makes it difficult to accept the Iraqi army's "moral breakdown" story advertised by the Americans."

[Analysis of video footage with regard to psychological state of prisoners.]

"Radio intercepts show that up to 25,000 British and American troops are already in the Basra region."

"Russian radio intercept units are certain that at least one coalition combat plane was shot down in these air raids."

"Our sources believe that the high-intensity air strikes will continue for another 24 hours and after that the coalition will be forced to scale down the attacks to conduct additional reconnaissance and to regroup its forces."

[Sources are not specified.]

"A radio intercept made last night at approximately 4:40 am indicated that two British helicopters were shot down by a "Strela" SAM system after flying into a SAM trap."

"During a "radio-bridge" with the commanders of all units Gen. Franks expressed his concern with the mounting casualties and the stubborn Iraqi resistance."

[It is not mentioned if this "radio-bridge" [conference call type of communications via radio] was open or not!!??]

March 21, 2003, 0930hrs MSK (GMT +3)

"The GRU GSh RF radio intercept units reported that during one of such pursuits the Americans lost one of their helicopters."

"According to the intercepted radio communications, mines destroyed some two US armored vehicles."

"Based on the intercepted radio communications Russian military intelligence believes that the Marines have encountered one the Iraqi mobile units."

"Russian intelligence reports that the peninsula is being defended by up to two Iraqi regiments and by the armed civilians from the local population supported by several artillery battalions."

[What the reports have as sources is not specified.]

March 20, 2003, 1015hrs MSK (GMT +3)

"According to Russian radio intercepts of US military communications some 40 cruise missile launches and 200 combat flights were carried out by the US during the first 6 hours of the war against Iraq."

"Based on radio intercepts, several US combat units deployed in the demilitarized zone were bombarded by Iraqi artillery around 0730hrs Moscow time."

"However, Russian agents are reporting that this plot was either uncovered in time or was under control of the Iraqi security agencies from the very beginning."

[Russian agents under control of the GRU. Persons perhaps in the Iraqi security apparatus.]

"Information obtained by the radio intercept units of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Russian Armed Forces (GRU VS RF) shows that the majority of the Iraqi air defenses did not take part in the deflection of the initial US air strike."

March 19, 2003, 0403hrs MSK (GMT +3)

"Based on the intercepted US military communications the Russian military intelligence believes that the US command is attempting to create a false impression of a pending massive ground attack on Basra."

March 18, 2003, 0126hrs MSK (GMT +3)

"According to the information received from one of the Russian Defense Ministry's radio intercept units, certain aspects of the planned military operation against Iraq were uncovered by the Russian military intel. During one of the radio communications between Kurd troops information was intercepted indicating that during the next 48 hours there may be a large-scale airdrop of US troops in Kurd-controlled northern Iraq."

"Information obtained from additional sources shows that Turkey's refusal to permit a large number of US ground troops on its territory threw into turmoil the US plans for invading Iraq from the north."

It is not specified what "additional sources" are. Presumbably HUMINT?

"Radio intercepts of Kurdish and some Turkish sources allow for a reasonable conclusion that with the beginning of the military operation the US will rely on Turkey's permission to use its airspace to transport between 18,000-22,000 troops in two days to Northern Kurdistan."

[With regard to the reporters and journalists being briefed and then sending their "take" via cell phones and unsecure radio commo is something that the enemy in VIETNAM was able to exploit. NO matter if the U.S. unit used secure commo, the units situation could be compromised by unsecure commo usage of an embedded journalist.]



Wednesday, March 22, 2006


This is coolbert:

  GRU Dope Sheet - - Iraq War - - Reprise.

Again, go here to see a web site that has a series of reports on the Iraq War II, as seen through the eyes of the GRU.

War in Iraq - GRU's take on things

"March 23, 2003

The IRAQWAR.RU analytical center was created recently by a group of journalists and military experts from Russia to provide accurate and up-to-date news and analysis of the war against Iraq. The following is the English translation of the IRAQWAR.RU report based on the Russian Army Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU) information."

"journalists and military experts from Russia".

Journalists?? Well, the function of a journalist is not unlike that of an intelligence case officer. Find sources and cultivate and mine the source for info.

Military experts? Ex-GRU personnel? Staff officers? Hard to say exactly who these folks are without further data.

These folks seem to be knowledgeable and write very well. Type of reports the higher echelons of military and governmental command would see. Well done.

This is good stuff!!



This is coolbert:

With regard to the remote control weapons systems [RCWS], here is a cartoon from "Doonesbury" that says a lot:

[you may have to click on the cartoon to enlarge and read the text. The frame on the far right is what "says a lot"]

[it seems that the CIA intern has accidentally and remotely fired a Hellfire missile from a Predator drone and wiped out an Al Qaeda hideout!!]

It IS the gaming. Primarily the video gaming that all kids nowadays have grown up with. They become very proficient at the various games available, many of them violent and having a WAR theme.

Look at the joystick and video monitor for the CLAWS system.

Heck, the gunner might as well be at home fighting the bad guys with a computer or a MS X-Box.

Indeed, one expert from the Army said that the Columbine killers, Harris and Klebold, who were known to have frequented arcades and "loved to death" to play violent and very realistic video games, must have killed thousands at "play" before they did the thing for real at the high school. They had achieved A HIGH DEGREE OF PROFICIENCY BEFORE HAVING ACTUALLY EVER DONE THE THING [killing people] FOR REAL!!

Some of the same actual video arcade games used by Harris and Klebold WERE and maybe STILL ARE used by American Special Operations troopers to train.

And with broadband access, it is possible for TEAMS of video warriors to engage other TEAMS in video combat competitions, with unit commanders issuing real-time instructions, players forming buddy teams as would be found in actual real-life combat and the degree of realism being startling!! I am thinking here about the Tom Clancy "GhostRecon" series of games.

[I am sure that Du Puy would have some comments here. Of course, video arcade game players do not have someone shooting back at them, trying to kill THEM! The element of FEAR is missing!!]

[so important did the Soviets consider simulators to be for their anti-tank-guided-missile [ATGM] crews of the Sagger variety, that during the Yom Kippur War of 1973, at the advice of the Soviets, the Egyptians were seen to back trucks with simulator vans up to the front during lulls in the fighting, so as to allow Egyptian ATGM gunners to practice their gunnery!!]



This is coolbert:

The current Stryker light armored vehicles [LAV] as being used in Iraq employ a remote control weapons system [RCWS].

These RCWS seem to be all the rage!!

A gunner from within the vehicle, under cover, can control, aim, and fire either a fifty caliber machine gun or the forty millimeter [mm] cannon integral to the LAV.

These RCWS have great merit. Allow the gunner to fire on the enemy without being subjected to counter-fire. Fire applied by the gunner on the target is more accurate and has greater effect.

Apparently such systems have been conceived as early as World War Two [WW2]. Electronics until recently was just too finicky to allow for effective and useful systems to be deployed.

CLAWS is one such system. Consists of the weapon, the control, the electronic brain, and the monitor and joystick as used by the gunner.

The CLAWS website states that this RCWS can be fitted onto a M113. Fancy that!!??

Such a system currently is used only for the fifty caliber machine gun and the forty mm cannon. Undoubtedly, again, with a little ingenuity, a RCWS can be also developed for the 106 mm recoilless rifle as well.



This is coolbert:

Go here to read about the SABOT round. Currently the state-of-the-art round fired by main battle tanks [MBT's].

I am sure that with a little ingenuity, and on a crash and very quick basis, such a round could be developed for the 106 mm recoilless rifle [RR].

When originally fielded, the 106 mm RR possessed a HEAT, anti-personnel [fletchette], and spalling round.

But not a SABOT round as is currently fielded by all self-respecting armies of the world for their MBT'S.

What you have with the SABOT round is a steel/tungsten dart, arrow like, coming at you at incredible velocity. Kinetic energy [KE] allows the dart to penetrate armor of even the greatest thicknesses.

Persons that have hefted the steel/tungsten dart of the SABOT all remark that it is amazing that something so SMALL could weigh SO MUCH!!

Such a SABOT round would greatly enhance the capability of the 106 mm RR. Give it an additional anti-tank capability AND a role in city fighting as well. Allow for a round that will penetrate the thickest concrete and cinder block walls.



This is coolbert:

Someone has already fitted the 106 mm recoilless rifle [RR] to the M113 APC. Pakistan Ordnance has fitted TWO of the 106 mm RR to the APC and IS fielding right now this vehicle.

Read the full article about the fitting of the RR to the APC.

Evidently this bad-boy even has a laser sight built into the unit for ranging. The gunner does not have to expose himself to counter-fire and can range, aim, and fire the RR from inside the APC. Sort of a remote control weapons system. [RCWS].

"Pakistan Ordnance Factories have also developed a twin 106 mm recoilless rifle mount which, for trials purposes, has been fitted onto an M113A1 APC of the Pakistani Army. The system also integrates a laser rangefinder into the existing sight of the 106 mm recoilless rifle to replace the elbow telescope. This allows the range to be displayed for the gunner in the sighting optic, which means that he can apply the superelevation and fire without having to look at another instrument."

It is not mentioned about loading and reloading.

A loader may have to reach up from inside the APC and load or unload the round, exposing only his arms and hands in the process. This is not clear from the article.

But can the fitting of the 106 mm RR to the M113 APC be done? As would be done with the Ghurkha brigade I propose? Certainly. It is already being done.


Sunday, March 19, 2006


This is coolbert:

Here is another experiment regarding the GRU [Russian Military Intelligence.

Taken from FAS web site.

55°29'42"N 37°19'43"E
The GRU Space Intelligence Directorate manages the Russian space reconnaissance program in coordination with the Fleet Intelligence Direction of the Fifth Directorate. The Fleet Intelligence Direction is responsible for space systems that provide intelligence supporting naval forces. The Space Intelligence Directorate is responsible for the development, manufacture, launch, and operation of Russian space-based reconnaissance systems. The directorate is located at Vatutinki, 50 kilometers southwest of Moscow. It operates its own cosmodromes, several research institutes, supporting mission ground centers, and a centralized computer processing facility."

Here is what Suvorov has to say about Vatutinki:

"Vatutinki is a top-secret little town near Moscow, where the GRU's main radio-receiving center is situated. Everything is secret there. Even the cemetery. Vatutinki is paradise. But like a real paradise, it has one inconvenience. There is no way out. Anyone who lands up in Vatutinki can rest assured that he will be buried in that same cemetery and nowhere else."

Vatutinki really does exist.

Try Google Earth for instance. I have recommended this before. Enables you to see the world as a satellite would. Has all sorts of features that allows the everyday average Joe to see things that once again, were once restricted to a handful of persons in the highest echelons of government.

Once you get Google Earth up and running, type in the coordinates for Vatutinki, which are: 55°29'42"N 37°19'43"E.

Let Google Earth run and lo and behold, up comes Vatutinki, Russian Federation, from an altitude of about 3000 feet. A small town.

Pan around the area until you come to these coordinates:

55°30'08.01"N 37°21'29.42"E.

At those coordinates appears a building with clear cut areas extending outward as spokes on a wheel would. Maybe two dozen or so clear cut areas. It is hard to count exactly the number with certainty. This whole structure is best viewed from say an altitude of about 4000 feet.

If you examine closely one of the clear cut areas in the southeast quadrant, at about four o'clock, you can see, and you must zoom in closely to see this, the shadows of what appear to be masts. Masts as you would find in an antenna field!! Other clear cut areas show similar shadows at about the right angle for the position of the sun at that time of the day. These very well might be masts for an antenna farm. Antennas of a rhombic, Beverage, or log-periodic-dipole-array design. Designed for good reception of high frequencies [short-wave] over long distances.


Again, remarkable that in this day and age, the average Joe has access to such material at his finger tips, and free too!!!