Valery Gerasimov, Russian military commander in Ukraine.

Introduction.

With all the accumulated defeats suffered by the Army of the Russian Federation in its «special military operation» in Ukraine from February 24, 2022 until now, Vladimir Putin does not rest, he is irritated and has no peace.

The latest «ace up his sleeve» is Army General Valery Gerasimov, born in the Russian city of Kazan, 67 years ago and Chief of the General Staff since 2012.

An almost ideal age for the work that is coming up. Defined by organization, structural changes, discipline, sufficient flow of means and a strong hand.

Almost as USSR Marshal Georgi Zhukov had it. When he went to important battle places to preside, on behalf of STAVKA, the General Staff of the Workers’ and Peasants’ Red Army, the main offensives of his Front Groups against the Germans, A Front was the Western equivalent of Army Group, although the Red Armies were smaller in men and means than the Western ones.

MARSHAL OF THE SOVIET UNION GEORGI ZHUKOV, WITH ALL HIS AWARDS.

When Putin appears with his senior military commanders in the photos, his Defense Minister Shoigu is to his right and Gerasimov, the chief of the General Staff of all the Armed Forces, is to his left.

As Assistants at his Main Command Post, probably in Crimea, Gerasimov will have the Chief of the Land Forces of the Russian Federation, to which the vast majority of the troops present in that theater of operations belong, and the current deputy chief of his General Staff (his G-1, in our nomenclature).

At first there was talk that the appointment of Gerasimov was a maneuver by the top Russian military commanders. To see how an intellectual general, a modern hybrid warfare theorist, performed in the field. But, it is not true that he has no combat experience. He has enough of her.

Gerasimov already participated in his day in the two «anti-banditry wars» or counterinsurgency (Russian name) in Chechnya. That was fighting hard for his independence from Russia, as the heir of the USSR, the former imperialist oppressor. In the second, in 1999, he was the deputy head of the Russian armed forces in the campaign. He is accused of war crimes against Chechen populations for his direct action.

He also acted, already as Chief of the General Staff of the Russian forces, during Russia’s campaign in direct support for the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad, since 2015, making frequent trips to the Syrian theater of operations.

Based on his direct experiences and his ability to analyze and synthesize the issues of his profession, Valery Gerasimov developed his Theory of Military Doctrine, currently in force in Russia. It’s his Hybrid War Theory.

Although it is nothing more than a Compilation of diplomatic, heterodox foreign, economic and military action policies and their trends. In short, what Gerasimov advocates is to use against the enemy all the means of a modern State in a great centripetous and synergistic action: diplomats, heterodox exteriors (various support for internal enemy dissidents, including armed forces, boycotts, promotion of popular discontent), economic, military

Thus, Putin decided with his military leadership to replace the «butcher of Syria» Colonel General Surovikin, as military chief of the Ukrainian campaign, appointed just a few months ago. He was the fourth replacement for the Russian campaign manager in Ukraine.

The general of ideas and methods with a strong and intransigent hand and centralized orders, which were given from top to bottom, by a general with more flexible and fresh training and ideas.

Based on his direct experiences and his capacity for analysis and synthesis of the issues of his profession, Valery Gerasimov developed his Theory of Military Doctrine, currently in force in Russia. It’s his Hybrid War Theory.

Although it is nothing more than a Compilation of diplomatic, heterodox foreign issues, economic and military action policies and their trends. In short, what Gerasimov advocates is to use against the enemy all the means of a modern State in a great centripetous and synergistic action: diplomats, heterodox exteriors (various support for internal enemy dissidents, including armed forces, boycotts, promotion of popular discontent), economic, military

Thus, Putin decided with his military leadership to replace the «butcher of Syria» Colonel General Surovikin, as military commander of the Ukrainian campaign, appointed just a few months ago. It was the fourth replacement of the Russian campaign commander in Ukraine.

The general of ideas and methods with a strong and intransigent hand and centralized orders, which were given from top to bottom, by a general with more flexible and fresh training and ideas.

That adapted the stagnant and heavy working of the Russian Army to a war of IV (guerrillas) and V (hybrid) generations.

Fighting against a very well equipped enemy (with better equipment and materials than theirs, for a conventional war, in general), committed and determined in their fight, with highly trained officers and cadres, tremendously motivated.

And, educated, trained and mentalized for a modern war, both of «operational movement and combat» and of «guerrillas and counterguerrillas».

Some Problems for Gerasimov.

Many are the problems accumulated by the Army of the Russian Federation and not all of them are solvable in the short term. Probably because they are already structural.

Continuous, effective and sufficient military logistics.

One of the star, creaking, problems of the Russian military is to establish a modern and effective comprehensive military logistics. Even defining it is quite simple for a professional.

INDOCTRINATION IN A SOVIET STATE AGRICULTURAL COOPERATIVE.

But, in the USSR and now in the Russian Federation, they have not been able to or did not know how to do it well.

In the USSR it was a classic that the potatoes collected in a kolkhoz or sovkhoz rotted in the field. Meanwhile, a few tens of km away, the urban people suffered from hunger or a nearby alcohol manufacturing industry did not receive the potatoes to produce it, from the starch of them.

Probably, the seminal error comes from the Marxist-Leninist economic doctrines, far from reality even in theory. In this case, the economy.

Where logistics is not considered, nor is «added value» attributed to it in the economy. Therefore, in the Budgets and the theoretical Soviet Five-Year Plans it was not taken into account.

The “total value” of a good comes from the “labor of the workers” and, later, of the peasants as well. And, amen.

As all the value of the good is attributed to the producers, the difference between the sale price and the production cost of the workers, the famous surplus value, is accused of being Appropriated (Stealed) by the bloody capitalists.

Capitalist production is not simply the production of commodities; it is essentially the production of surplus value.

This is one more theoretical fallacy of communism, with disastrous economic and military consequences for the country.

Although communism has already disappeared from Russia as a theoretical ruling force, many of its styles, ideas and methods, applied for 70 years, have penetrated and endured in the idiosyncrasies of society and its culture.

(To be continued)

The Opportunity as Command’s Instrument for Victory

Introduction.

The opportunity arises from the play of dialectical actions between the opposing units. Opportunity is the tactical, even operational, weakness that arises in an enemy sector or is about to do so. We can act on it and even precipitate it with our combined weapons system in an «action interface» especially favorable to us. In opportunity always underlies an enemy error. If this was insurmountable for him, it would be due to the unforeseen, surprising circumstances that concurred. Opportunities are a useful and advantageous feature provided by the dialectic of actions in the chaos of war.

The intermediate objectives foreseen in the plans are not opportunities. They are forecasts derived from the planning and the well-founded resolution of the command. When contacts with the enemy begin, its achievement begins to be tested, as Moltke said, in the dialectics play.

Functioning.

Of this play in a chaotic environment, independently of the greater or smaller deviations from plans, will arise the opportunities and the dangers. The dangers would be the enemy opportunities on us. Both are unexpected, but accessible and exploitable during a certain time. The reason of the unpredictably of the opportunities in the time is in the number almost infinite of variables and individual and collective actions that concur to define asituation” and the successive cycles of action in which it develops.

The opportunity arises when the enemy fails to use his forces and means of support. It can originate in differences in the qualities of enemy forces and in the transitability of a given terrain, that debilitates a defense or the momentum of an attack. It also appears in the negligence of the enemy in presenting an exposed flank, that is, an interface of action real or potential favorable with us, not properly taken care of by him to face our available combined arms system. The opportunity is an emptiness in combat capacity that arises in a cycle of action for a unit, or a sector, that is unprotected and neglected for long enough allowing it to be detected and exploited by the enemy.

It is necessary to take advantage of opportunities quickly. The dynamics of interaction in a chaotic environment makes opportunities unattainable after a short time. The succession of cycles of action continually modify circumstances.

Developing.

To detect opportunities at any level of military activity, intelligence is necessary (elaborated the exploration and reconnaissance and converted into useful, continuous, sufficient knowledge) and the sufficient presence of the corresponding command. To take advantage of them, simple and vertical communication is necessary, supported by implicit communication between subordinate leaders and mobility, flexibility and combat capacity available in the units and commands involved. If the opportunity is transcendental, the tactical or operational center of gravity of the military means is transferred to it by the command. If it is important, their use must contribute concentrically to its creation and development.

The same characteristics just mentioned, but focused on ourselves, are the ones that, in turn, will protect us from enemy dangers or opportunities. This will prevent its appearance, compensate for the danger or mitigate its presence and reduce our time of vulnerability. If despite foresight and care, surprising or unexpected circumstances concur in its appearance, even due to a mistake on our part, the means to be used are the last two actions mentioned for its detection and use.

What is that sufficient presence of the commander? The one that allows him to take advantage of the opportunities that arise at his level of activity. All of this is directly related to the two different command styles or forms for carrying out the tasks of the different levels of command.

Tactical command must be exercised bySensing the “action interface” with the enemy, exchanging actions with him on the ground. The limit of tactical command is clearly in the brigade. And, in large operations or in the attack or in the armored forces, it probably reaches in greater or lesser degree to the division, whose commander must drive forward the march or the attack behind the first important marching force of the bulk of the unit.

The command of the army corps is clearly an corps’ operational management and must have a broader perspective of the whole. As well as a greater distance from direct contact with the enemy, which overcomes the interface of action and its immediate rear. This gives the command breadth, vision, serenity and security.

In the immense chaos that is created in a combat, the foresight of the command can impose and outline its evolution in a direction and sense.

Like the effective command, is capable of «searching» and «feeling» the enemy’s signs of weakness and discouragement. And then he prepares the forces that he will use in the persecution and the support that he will give them. Putting them under the command of an energetic, spirited, leading and lucid commander.

The command must prepare «rapidly available forces» in the units under its command. For example, a mixed company in the battalion; a combined arms battalion in the brigade. In such a way that the appearance of the opportunity, close and surprising, allows him to take advantage of it. Since the surprise will help the opportunity to be seized at first by a relatively small force of their own. And that may soon be reinforced by the bulk.

Example of the effective, non-physical presence of a High Command.

Erich von Manstein directed the counterattack operation of the German Armies Group Don, mainly against the Soviet Southwestern Front of General Vatutin, from his headquarters in Zaporiya. By mid-March1943, the Germans had eliminated six tank corps in the order of battle of Vatutin, recovered Kharkov and settled a resistant defense front from Tangarov to Belgorod, supported in the Mius and the Donetz. They also had enough mobile reserves in the south of Russia to reject possible soviet operational ruptures in the zone. And, after the setback of Stalingrad, they had recovered the strategic initiative, at least in the southern theater of operations.

HITLER, WORRIED, VISIT MARSHAL VON MANSTEIN AT ZAPORIYA, UKRAINE.

An attack against the Kursk salient, completed its formation by von Manstein‘s advance on Belgorod, which would have begun in April, then had a chance of success due to the lack of Soviet preparation.

This same offensive, which began in July 1943, determined that no more mistakes by the German High Command (Hitler) were of any importance: then, the subjet of total strategy or state strategy was no longer who would win the war, but how long it would take to do so.

A Failure in the effective presence of command.

Let’s see an example of an inadequate presence of the commander, in relation to the echelon that he is supposed to command. It starred Rommel in North Africa in November 1941.

Rommel’s advanced command post in the desert.

Mistakenly believing that the British armor was dispersed after some fighting, Rommel ordered to concentrate his Panzers on the Libyan-Egyptian border. Directly dedicated to it, acting as a regimental commander, he was involved in the repulse of a British attack. He was even isolated with his command vehicle, due to a mechanical problem, for half a day at the front.

This temporarily deprived him of control of operations in Tobruk. This was Rommel’s main operational objective, while resisting the German siege was the main objective of the English. Due to this unjustified distraction, Rommel had to abandon the attempt to take that fortified port, located in his operational rear, which he could have consolidated for his defense of his won territory.

In less than a month, the advances of the English tanks and infantry forced him into a long retreat towards Tunisia. He had to give up almost all the ground he had gained since March, when he arrived in Africa, until he recovered and was able to fight back, as British pressure lightened.

Fallen Russian Generals in Ukraine.

Russian Generals missing from their Battle Forward Post in Ukraine

Introduction.

There are hundreds of videos of Ukrainians neutralizing Russian air, naval and ground vehicles. That more than fighting at close distances, it seems that they pose as if they were shooting ducks at a town fair.

Cuatro generales rusos muertos en Ucrania en 20 días, tantos como en  Afganistán en 10 años

These videos are mostly produced by almost unknown film companies.

And sometimes even a supposed Russian general falls almost in the battle’s first rows.

Developing.

A general never accompanies or stands in combat with a platoon lieutenant or company captain or a battalion commander or lieutenant colonel.

His tasks are not to hit shots. Nor haranguing the men around him. Or drive them into combat by his example. That is done by the officers in charge of the units and the non-commissioned officers in immediate command of the soldiers. Who know their soldiers like nobody else. Or will it not be so here?

Ucrania mata en un mismo día a dos generales rusos y pone en evidencia el  grave problema del ejército de Putin

The task of the general officer is to conceive and conceptualize the combat and the maneuvers of his tactical units, fulfilling the Tasks and Missions of the Army in campaign.

And, facilitate the means in: combined arms units; anti-tank, artillery and air support for them and the logistics for it: from health to supplies of all kinds, from fuel to ammunition, through maintenance teams and removal of damaged vehicles and kitchens and food distribution to the collection points of the units.

Baja en el ejército ruso: muere el alto general Sukhovetsky - AS.com

He harangues and drives the commanders and chiefs of units dependent on him. And, to all the soldiers on rare occasions.

To fulfill Those, fulfilling the universal principle of the economy of human and material means. That is, following the best and most optimized use of it.

And, as I have said before, the death of a general is a national disaster. And, the death of a 4-star general, commander-in-chief of an army of many tens of thousands of soldiers, is a national catastrophe.

Simply because they are very important military assets.