"Armatami" on sanctions

"Armatami" on sanctions
"Armatami" on sanctions

The growth of military spending will help the domestic economy

The sharp increase in spending on national defense in the Russian Federation in 2015, despite the general problems in our economy, as well as the actual refusal of the executive branch to sequester these costs, became the subject of lively discussion.

Of course, among the domestic liberals, what is happening has caused talk about the inadmissibility of "militarization", especially in the current situation. One of the community's most prominent figures said late last year that a country's fate is determined by economic, not military, power. A double (!) Reduction in military spending has now become one of the most important slogans of the entire liberal opposition.

"Armatami" on sanctions

One can only be amazed to what extent people are unable to draw conclusions even from completely obvious facts. Against the background of the Ukrainian crisis, talking about the "militarization" of the Russian economy, about the inadmissibility of such high military spending is either a conscious enemy of one's country, or, to put it mildly, an extreme dogmatist (although much stricter definitions suggest themselves).

Of course, without a powerful economy, a country cannot have a strong army. But the opposite is equally true. The Armed Forces have a very specific economic function - they protect the country and its productive forces from destruction as a result of external aggression or internal destabilization. It is possible to consider them a parasite only with a complete loss of connection with reality.

It has long been clear that the world's economic center has moved to Asia. But the most powerful leap forward of the Asian countries is not at all a consequence of their economy on the armies. Against. China, India, Taiwan, Japan, both Koreas, almost all ASEAN countries are rapidly building up their military power. They are actively developing their own defense industry complex so as not to depend on arms sellers. The corresponding expenditures here tend to grow faster than GDP. And the military center of the world is also moving to Asia.

Europe is the exact opposite example. Endless savings on military spending did not save the EU countries (almost all of them are NATO members) from years of economic stagnation, when GDP growth of one percent per year is considered a very good result, and recession has long been commonplace. The Old World does not even dream of high rates of economic development, and the European armies are now much weaker than the Asian ones.

The impotence of the thrifty

The European example confirms the fact that it is impossible to pursue an independent foreign policy without military strength. This was clearly manifested in connection with the Ukrainian crisis.

Unfortunately, a significant part of the Russian population continues to believe in propaganda tales about the NATO threat. We do not at all understand the fact that the problem for us, paradoxically, was not the strength, but, on the contrary, the weakness of NATO. European countries today are incapable not only of aggression, but even of defense. Russia's actions in Crimea and Donbass have caused a real panic in Europe (especially in Eastern Europe). The convulsive-hysterical movements of the alliance to "strengthen the defense of Eastern Europe" underline this. The creation of "rapid reaction forces" looks especially amusing, despite the fact that NATO has had such for a long time, and there is also "first-priority engagement forces." Neither one nor the other is completely incapable.The same will happen with the new RRF, since in them, despite the panic, almost no one is going to provide any real contingents.

As a result, the United States appeared for the EU as the only defender, because only America now has real military power in NATO (and also Turkey, which, however, is pursuing a completely independent foreign policy and is not going to save Europe from Russia). Therefore, Brussels unquestioningly follows orders from Washington, although this directly contradicts the interests of the EU. That is, saving on military spending did not ensure any economic growth, and now the weakness of Europe causes it direct economic damage from sanctions and Russian countermeasures. Once again, it was confirmed that the real parasite is the army that was stingy. For it still absorbs a certain amount of money, but at the same time it does not fulfill its economic function. Accordingly, all the funds spent can be considered wasted. That is, the real blow to the country's budget is inflicted precisely by the economy on the Armed Forces.

In this regard, one can hardly find a brighter example than the Ukrainian one. It must be considered without political assessments, then everything becomes especially obvious.

Immediately after the collapse of the USSR, the Ukrainian Armed Forces, according to their potential, shared the third or fourth places in the world with the Chinese Armed Forces. The Armed Forces of Ukraine still share the first and second places in Europe with the Turkish army in terms of the number of equipment on paper (if we exclude the RF Armed Forces from consideration). However, all 23 years of independence Kiev saved on the Armed Forces. They did not receive new equipment, while the existing one was practically not serviced. Combat training was almost at zero, the standard of living of servicemen (except, of course, generals) was extremely low. For some reason, this did not bring economic prosperity to Ukraine. On the contrary, industrial production, the social sphere, the standard of living of the population stagnated, according to all indicators, Ukraine fell lower and lower every year.

The events of 2014-2015 became a natural consequence of this “wise policy”. The military weakness of Ukraine led to the country's loss of significant territories and huge human casualties. As for the economic damage, it is now even difficult to calculate it, especially since it will grow in any case. It is only clear that it is several times, if not orders of magnitude higher than the entire 23-year "economy" on the aircraft. And the feverish attempts of the current Kiev authorities in the context of the ongoing civil war to reanimate the army did little to help it, but inflicted an additional powerful blow on the economy and social sphere, guaranteeing a further drop in all relevant indicators.

On the other hand, Russia, which has largely recovered its military power over the past five years, may have absolutely no fear of forceful pressure from NATO. Reducing defense spending in the current situation will not improve our economy, but worsen it, and qualitatively, because then the West will talk to us not in hysterics, as it is now, but in the genre of an order, tightening sanctions pressure. In general, on the eve of elections to the State Duma next year, the attitude of the party to the military budget should become the most important criterion for its assessment by the electorate. If a citizen is interested in the future of his own country, he will never vote for a party calling for a reduction in defense spending.

Of course, huge amounts of money allocated for military construction should be spent as intended, and not on the welfare of the heads of individual defense industry enterprises. This is not about corruption, it is an absolute evil and a systemic problem of the entire country, but this is a completely separate topic. It's about how best the military budget is spent, in particular, on the purchase of new military equipment. There are definitely opportunities to save money on some programs in favor of other topics and areas.

Hidden reserves

There are, of course, classes of weapons and equipment where no economy is allowed. This is, firstly, the strategic nuclear forces.All programs are needed here - both on mobile monoblock missiles and on heavy silo missiles and on SLBMs. Secondly, savings on ground air defense are absolutely excluded. Moreover, the 28 two-divisional regiments of the S-400 air defense system, which the Ministry of Defense promised us, is not enough. There should be more regiments and divisions in them. Thirdly, as the war in Ukraine remarkably demonstrated to us, you cannot skimp on artillery. She is still the god of war. This is especially true of rocket artillery. Fourthly, submarines will always form the backbone of the Russian Navy. All programs for their construction must be preserved without fail, and some, apparently, expanded (first of all, PLA pr. 885).

With armored vehicles, everything is not so simple. We are talking about three families of machines that have not yet been put into production, but have already become world "stars": "Armata", "Kurganets", "Boomerang".

"Armata" is, undoubtedly, the largest success of the modern Russian "defense industry" and, in general, one of the most outstanding achievements of the Russian military-industrial complex in its entire history. A lot of good weapons were made in our country, but something revolutionary and breakthrough was very rarely created. As a rule, we were catching up and not going ahead. "Armata" is a breakthrough thing. This refers not only and not so much to the concept of the tank, now known as the T-14, but to the fact that it was originally a family of combat vehicles, one of which was the BMP T-15. It has long been clear: the current BMP concept has outlived its usefulness. Two and a half hundred infantry fighting vehicles that burned down in the Donbass (on both sides), at least 50 Bradleys, which found their end in Iraq and Afghanistan (in the context of anti-guerrilla wars), were further confirmation of this fact. The only chance to save this class of armored vehicles is unification with tanks. This is exactly what is being done within the framework of "Armata". As a result, it becomes completely incomprehensible why we need "Kurganets". This is just a traditional BMP. Perhaps very good, standing on a par with the German "Puma" and the South Korean K-21, but nevertheless the same "mass grave of the infantry." If it has come down to us that it is necessary to make an infantry fighting vehicle on a tank chassis, why spend huge amounts of money on parallel production? Of course, the T-15 will be more expensive than the Kurganets, all the more so, transfer all the money from it to the Armata and build really “correct” BMPs in the required quantity (several thousand units).

Big questions are also raised by the "Boomerang", which, moreover, is clearly much heavier than the "Armata" and "Kurganets". In this case, there is a well-known foreign analogue - the American Stryker. In the United States, the attitude towards this car is extremely ambiguous. In Iraq and Afghanistan, at least 77 "Strikers" were lost, despite the fact that even RPGs and ATGMs were rarely used against them. Almost all vehicles were destroyed by land mines. Had the Stryker been in a classic combined-arms battle (as in the Donbass), the losses would have increased by an order of magnitude. In this sense, it is extremely significant that Israel abandoned the Strikers, although the Americans imposed them extremely actively. Jews know a lot about ground warfare, both classical and counterinsurgency. And long ago they came to the conclusion that the only means of transporting infantry on the battlefield should be infantry fighting vehicles based on tanks. Now the Israelis are producing the Namer BMP on the Merkava chassis, and before that they preferred the Akhzarits and Nagmashots on the chassis of the ancient T-55 and Centurions to the newest, but "cardboard" Strikers. A similar Russian "Boomerang", apparently, will be redundant for police operations (for them BTR-82A, "Tiger" and "Typhoon" are enough), and in a classic battle it will become another "mass grave". Accordingly, isn't it easier to abandon it right now, and give the money back to "Armata"?

In aviation, the problem of duplication, that is, the simultaneous production of several types of machines of the same class, is extremely acute in our country. Moreover, no one in the world allows anything of the kind.

The United States still has a gigantic military budget, with three huge aircraft - the army, the air force, and the naval. For the first one, one type of combat helicopter is currently being produced - the good old Apache, whose production was resumed in 2005 after an 11-year (!) Break. For the Air Force, one type of combat aircraft is produced - the F-35A. For naval aviation - the same F-35 in modifications B and C, as well as F / A-18E / F, the production of which, however, will be completed this year. For the Marine Corps, the production of another good old combat helicopter, the AN-1 Cobra in the Z modification, has been resumed.

China today is the second largest military budget in the world and an absolute record holder for the physical production of military equipment of all classes. But even his type of technique is very limited. One heavy fighter (J-11) and one light fighter (J-10) are produced, only modifications are changed that enter service sequentially, and not in parallel. For carrier-based aircraft, the J-15 is produced - the naval version of the J-11 (that is, the Su-27). There is also one combat helicopter (WZ-10).

Russia, despite the growth of military expenditures, is very far from the USA and China in their absolute value. But by the type of aircraft it surpasses them put together. For the Air Force today, four types of aircraft are produced simultaneously, created on the basis of the Su-27 - Su-34, Su-30SM, Su-30M2 and Su-35S. The start of serial production of the T-50 (Su-50?) Is expected. In addition, the production of the MiG-29K has begun for the only aircraft carrier. That is, after the start of production of the T-50, we will apparently be producing six types of front-line combat aircraft at the same time. Even the USSR did not allow itself such a luxury. The same applies to combat helicopters, of which three types are now being produced - Ka-52, Mi-28N, Mi-35M. For the Ka-52, there is also a naval version of the Ka-52K. This is not known not only by domestic, but also by world aviation history.

The author of this article is plagued by vague doubts about whether we need the T-50, but I will leave them to myself. But it is absolutely certain that at least one, and maybe both, Su-30s are superfluous. Having saved on them, it is better to produce an adequate number (several hundred each) of Su-34 and Su-35S. It is highly doubtful that a new type of aircraft is needed for the only old, not quite full-fledged aircraft carrier. As for helicopters, one should be selected based on the results of the operation of these three types. The current situation is absurd and represents not so much a strengthening of defense capability as a triumph of lobbying. Moreover, it is necessary to significantly increase funds for the development of unmanned aircraft, where the backlog of Russia remains very serious.

The adventure with the Mistrals ends in the best possible way: the French will return the money to us, leaving two senseless iron boxes for themselves (although the disputes over the amount of the return may drag on). I would like to hope that the adventure will not be revived in an even more insane version of "we ourselves will build no worse." I also want to believe that in the next 10-15 years, at least, talk about aircraft carriers will remain just talk. The arguments of the supporters of their construction are so amazing (in the sense of being out of touch with reality) that sometimes it seems as if you are dealing with aliens. Apparently, in the foreseeable future we can do without a new destroyer, although its meaning is at least clear. The program of corvettes of projects 20380/20385 unambiguously requires the closure (after the completion of the already laid down ships). Instead of them, it is better to purchase additional batteries of coastal anti-ship missiles, and to them several "Armor" - it will be much more efficient, more reliable and cheaper.

In the coming years (ten years), we will need only two classes of surface ships. Minesweepers - on the same type of raid, base and sea, while it is desirable to provide for the possibility of their use and as patrol ships in the corresponding zones. And frigates. True, here we are now building two types at the same time. It is necessary, having launched all the mortgaged ships, to make a choice in favor of one.And it is possible that the well-mastered project 11356 will turn out to be more necessary for the Russian Navy than the futuristic project 22350, since the frigates need to have at least 20-30 units. It is both cheaper and easier to build Project 11356 in such a quantity.

Once again, it must be emphasized: the funds saved on reduced or canceled programs should be transferred to expanding the production capacities of the military-industrial complex or, for example, to military R&D, but in no case should they be taken outside the limits of defense construction. It is necessary to sharply increase funding for all technical and exact sciences that are directly related to national security. Permanent catastrophes of space rockets are a natural consequence of the collapse of national science and its replacement by religion. As they write on the Russian Internet, our missiles are increasingly hitting the firmament. With the continuation of such a policy, all discussions about what kind of technology we need will simply lose their meaning - there will be no one to develop and build it. Until now, rockets have been created and launched by the mind, and no one has ever managed to do this by prayer.

As for such, of course, the most important substances

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