Ukrainian forces successfully retook significant portions of Russian-occupied territory, underlining the efficient Ukrainian defense strategies and operational planning. Despite Russian military shortcomings on the battlefield, it’s critical to understand that Russian military strategy and conceptual understanding are innovative, with roots in Soviet strategic culture and military thought, which have potential implications for the future of warfare.
- Russian military strategy has a history of correctly predicting implications of advancements in weaponry and sensor technologies, which have implications on current warfare strategies. These advancements have led to a shift towards smaller, more dispersed military units for improved survivability.
- Soviet/Russian military concepts—nonlinear warfare and noncontact warfare—have significantly impacted contemporary Russian military thinking regarding the conduct of large-scale conventional warfare. These concepts, born in the late 1980s and early 1990s, are largely driven by advancements in military technology.
- The Great Patriotic War (World War II) marks the high point of Soviet operational art, with key elements being “deep battle” and “deep operation”. This strategy involved simultaneously attacking enemy forces throughout their entire depth using artillery, air strikes, and air landings.
- The advent of nuclear weapons prompted a change in Soviet military strategy, increasing the importance of mobility and smaller, more agile units to reduce vulnerability. The battlefield is increasingly seen as fragmented, offering greater independence of action to individual commanders.
- In response to advancements in U.S. military technology, the Soviets developed the reconnaissance-strike and reconnaissance-fire complex to preemptively attack Western deep-strike and deep-attack systems. This represented a shift towards a network-centric warfare strategy, emphasizing the importance of accelerating the detection-decision-action cycle.