Author`s name Dmitry Sudakov

Russian planes and ships demonstrate economic and political power

The drills that were launched on the night of July 13 in Russia, following the order from the Supreme Commander to check the combat readiness of the Eastern Military District, have become the largest military exercise of the Russian Armed Forces. In fact, the drills have not finished yet, but it is possible to come to certain conclusions already.

The Russian President said that the drills have been more than satisfactory. He had to be canceled the landing of commandoes on the Trans-Baikal range Tsugol due to weather conditions. Almost all other operations, with rare exceptions, went smoothly.

The 247th inter-specific range Tsugol was the venue for the final phase of the large-scale maneuvers that started on Saturday. President Putin personally observed the last stage of testing combat readiness of the Eastern Military District. He also visited the Uspenovsky range near Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, and Tsugol became the final point of his work route. However, the drills will last at least until July 20.

It is worthy of note that Russian neighbors in the Far East, and even European countries, have been closely monitoring the drills. So far no one has said anything negative about it. Foreign countries treat this with understanding, Deputy Defense Minister Anatoly Antonov said on Monday, after a meeting in Moscow with foreign military attaches.

In general, large-scale exercises are needed to see how all structures of the state, not just the army, could exercise in the management of all troops and local government agencies in critical situations. The Army and the Navy must be on the move - they need to constantly improve their skills and knowledge. Against the background of a large-scale rearmament of the army and the navy, exercises of this kind are particularly important, because one needs to understand how and who will use the new technology in modern combat action.

It must be said that foreign intelligence agencies, the diplomatic corps and analysts, who follow the media very carefully, always prioritize just such global exercises. This, of course, is not incidental.

The plans for the mobilization and deployment of troops are traditionally considered most secret in the military. Military maneuvers reveal some of these plans, of course. However, as long as observers, including foreign ones, can only see a small part of the process of military deployment, they can not come to any conclusions regarding the general situation in the army...

The current drills take place with the participation of more than 160,000 troops, about 1,000 of tanks and armored vehicles, 130 long-range aircraft, military transport, fighter and bomber aircraft and dozens of navy ships - more than six thousand pieces of military equipment in total.

Summing up preliminary results of this exercise the president said: "We can today be proud of our army." Presumably, these words expressed confidence in the future of the Russian armed forces.

However, Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu criticized the actions of some of his subordinates. He was extremely unhappy about the fact that aircraft in Khabarovsk took off ten hours later than they should have - it turned out that there was no fuel prepared for the planes.

It remains unknown how the minister will punish negligent commanders, who were not even smart enough to seek help from civil aviators. Reportedly, when one of the generals started talking about the timely funding of military aviation, Shoigu severely responded: "Money does not refuel aircraft." 

Shortly before flying away from the Far East, the president talked to reporters, summing up his brief two-day visit.

"This exercise is large indeed. We have not conducted such drills either in Russia's recent history, or in the Soviet era. The army and the navy must be in motion to improve their skills and knowledge. Against the background of large-scale rearmament of the army and the navy, such exercises are extremely important. The difficult side of it is the fact that it was not only an exercise, but a sudden inspection. Divisions were raised entirely and everything worked well. This is a large complex of problems associated, in particular, with providing food, ammunition, medical supplies .... The drills are being held in a coordinated way, there is not even one serious violation there. The goal has been reached almost completely. One had to work in unusual circumstances, on new range grounds, so it was impossible to do everything perfectly. We have not hit every target, but combat missions have been carried out."

If Russia really shows its strength and determination not to dance to anyone's tune, all sorts of business negotiations will take place in a more favorable line for our country ...

Andrei Mikhailov


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