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Russian Defense Minister Provides Insight Into Effect Of Operation In Syria

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Russian Defense Minister Provides Insight Into Effect Of Operation In Syria

IMAGE: Marina Lystseva/TASS

The military operation in Syria has boosted Russia’s international prestige and fast-tracked the development of its armed forces, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoygu said on March 25.

At a meeting in the Federation Council, the defense minister said that a majority of Armed Forces commanders, 90% of Aerospace Forces personnel, 61% of air-defense specialists and 98% of naval officers have gained combat experience during the operation.

Shoygu also revealed that a new class of elite pilots, each with 200 or more combat sorties, has appeared in Russia as a result of the operation.

“[Our troops] are equipped with modern, reliable weapons tested in battle,” vesti.ru quoted the minister as saying.

Since 2015, the Russian military has successfully tested more than 200 weapons systems in real combat conditions in Syria. These tests have enabled the military to develop and upgrade many of these systems.

According to Shoygu, by 2020 capabilities of the Russian Armed Forces had more than doubled. This allowed Russia to maintain the “strategic balance” with the NATO.

The military operation in Syria was without a doubt a chance for the Russian military to gain valueable combat expirience. This allowed it to improve own anti-terrorism, fire support and air-defense capabilities.

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  • Swift Laggard II

    Russia seems to have good weapons, but it has very weak overall strategic engagement with it’s allies and partners. It places it’s interests above and against those of the parties it seeks to partner with. We have seen thousands of airstrikes by foreign forces on Syrian soil, while Russia pretends to be a guarantor of Syrian sovereignty. Many of these strikes done with it’s knowledge and acquiescence. How do you let allies who you are fighting with on the ground be targeted and eliminated by their adversaries? This will always be a Russian weakness. Many pundits try to pass it off as strategic patience and focus, but in reality it is the defeatism of weakness and guile. One thing i know is that for all her faults, Murica would never allow such a situation, ever. She would not allow here allies to be in such a situation. Buy Russian stuff only if you have no other choice, because she will always betray you.

    • AG Korvin

      For war has nothing to do with truth or justice.

      It has to do with reasons like this: testing more than 200 new weapom systems.

      And of course, war is never had anything to do with the people engulfed in its flames.

      • Swift Laggard II

        none of what you have written has addressed the central point of my thesis: that good Russian weapons lack the strategic cooperation framework and security guarantees that will ensure your enemies fear to touch you

        • Squeeth

          The US is a predator that attacks its “allies” whenever it is expedient. All that Russia and China have to do is behave a little better than that and the pendulum will move ever faster towards them.

          • Swift Laggard II

            the US treats it’s allies badly at times no doubt, because it has the leeway to. it knows it’s weight and that no other nation is currently capable of matching her importance to her allies, and the kind of security guarantees she can provide. But let me ask you and answer very objectively: would US ever allow any nation to conduct airstrikes against any of her real allies without a robust response? for instance would she countenance any nation striking the tsionists or the wahabis in riyadh without giving a massive response to such a strike? that is why nobody would dare do such a thing. Iran tried in the refinery attack, the us took it’s time and you know what happened. that is what it means to sell security guarantees – you buy our weapons, we watch your back. Even if tsion and the wahabis had conflict of interests the us would never let them fight – they will work behind the scenes to hammer out some deal which will ensure none of the side attacks the other. That is how the US balances her allies like Greece and Turkey. If you are not her ally, you would niot even think to attack her ally, because you know it would be a bad idea. Russia is much much worse than this. She will actively exploit your situation to cut deals with your enemy all while using you for her purpose. This is what I have seen in every single situation. She has sold out Iran when Iran wanted to buy S300, delaying delivery for a decade while Iran had already opaid. She has stood aloof while Tsionists and Turks savaged her allies who are doing the real fighting on the ground, all the time meeting yahoo and idogan in Moscow every few months – how many times have Kamenei and Assad been invited to Moscow? Russia will ALWAYS betray you.

          • Squeeth

            Tautology, the US does not protect its protectorates, it varies the means by which it sucks them dry.

          • Swift Laggard II

            That’s a pathetic reply. US security guarantees are Iron clad, whatever jokers like you say

          • Squeeth

            Tell that to Saddam Hussein, oh you can’t, he’s dead and his country is in ruins. Ghaddaffi? Oh, ‘e’s gorn too; the list goes on assuming you aren’t historically illiterate.

          • Swift Laggard II

            Saddam and Gadaffi were never clients or allies of the Muricans or the West. I realize am arguing here with stup1d ideologues who cannot offer cogent arguments, just bla bla bla

          • Squeeth

            Course they were, The CIA helped Hussain with his Ba’athist coup. The US engineered a rapprochement with Ghaddaffi when the Reign of Terror began. Do your homework.

          • Swift Laggard II

            too shallow for debate. I did not know southfront is inhabited by fuuls

          • Squeeth

            You’re an American, aren’t you? ;O)

          • Swift Laggard II

            No. I am your uncle. This is the kind or rubb1sh I don’t engage in. My nationality is utterly irrelevant. I did not know that this forum is a place for fuuls and shallow ideologues to pat themselves on the back cheer leading for their favorite team. I don’t operate at that intellectual level. Bye

          • Squeeth

            Still here? I grant you the last word.

          • Swift Laggard II

            I have recently been reading an over view of the strategic thinking and considerations by Algerian defence and security planners. One thing that has shaken them to the core are Russian actions in Syria i.e. how they have allowed attacks on their allies so brazenly. They have come to the conclusion that Russia is not reliable as a strategic security partner though they have been buying weapons almost exclusively from them. So now they will diversify to buy some insurance, slowly but very steadily they will bring western weapons into their inventories and cultivate relationships with western arms supplies just as an insurance policy. Already they are cutting major deals with German arms companies, have bought some Murican radars, and will continue to expand this portfolio and cultivate the West as an alternative supplier. That is the price Russi will pay for her unreliability

          • Squeeth

            Who are these Algerians working for?

          • Swift Laggard II

            who do you think they should be working for?

          • Squeeth

            Come on, you can do better than that.

          • Swift Laggard II

            better than that is not to debate fuuls who shout slogans while dying under tsionist airstrikes

          • Squeeth

            Apologies, I was wrong, you can’t.

          • Swift Laggard II

            No I can’t. I don’t engage with people of low intellectual ability as I have found on this forum. I would usually not say it but I am surprised this is the kind of clientele entertained by this blog. Bye

          • Squeeth

            ‘Ow dare you! I have an O level, you know.

          • George King

            You do not understand the difference of vassal versus allies, unilateral zero sum versus multi polar partners.

          • Swift Laggard II

            rather be a vassal and be totally secure, than be an ally and get bombed by ‘friends’ of your security guarantor day and night under some supposed concept of ‘multi polar partnership’ which in reality is nonsense. States do not enter in security arrangements just for the sake of it as many of you here seem to think. it is a matter of life and death for your citizens including your soldiers. Russi has failed to understand this and to guarantee the security of her allies. that is why even big and long time partners like India are moving away from the bear gradually but very very surely towards Murica and the West fro her security needs

          • Willing Conscience (The Truths

            You’re banging your head against a brick wall, even linking official Russian government statements won’t help you convince the totally devoted, Putin could start killing and eating babies and get away with it on SF, the pro Putin supporters would find some excuse to legitimise their heros new madness and rationalize his abhorrent behaviour.
            But don’t give up, some of us like hearing a bit of honesty from our fellow readers, the mindless comments you just recieved can become increasingly overbearing without a small dose of sanity every now and again.
            But I would like to point out that blaming Russia for the current state of affairs is perhaps not quite accurate, I personally think it’s more accurate to say Russia under Putin’s leadership is responsible for the changed state of affairs, the USSR was never known for wavering loyalty or unfulfilled responsibility.

      • FlorianGeyer

        Russia is, in fact, putting out the flames caused by the US Coalition of Terror.
        Including the muppets in NATO.

    • seawolf

      here are your five cents .

      • Swift Laggard II

        five cents for what? what have i written that you object to? why would any nation buy Russian weapons without the associated security guarantees? I better go with Murica who even if they extract serious prices from you, will give you iron clad security guarantees once you buy their stuff

        • I guess Saudi Barbaria got their money’s worth when their oil facilities were bombed and American Patriot Defense systems did nothing to stop it.

          • Swift Laggard II

            But us responded with k1lling sulemani. So you can be sure Iran will not be taking such reckless actions again any time soon

          • Ronald

            Saudi’s oil facilities were bombed by the Houthi’s, not Iran, Saudi is loosing.
            Assassinating Soleimani was the biggest error in American history, if not the most shameful.

          • Swift Laggard II

            we are not debating the war in Yemen or whether or not k1lling sulemani was a good or bad idea. we are debating the shortcomings – vis a vis the West – of having Russia as a supposed ally and security partner as has been shown many times over the last two decades

          • Jens Holm

            What a joke. Those are made in Bandar Abbas and must be gift from someone rich uncle or something else.

            I dont like Saudis as well. You are kind if the same.

          • Jens Holm

            Tempting to mention S300 and S400 in Syria. Maybee they are plastic because Russians dont trust the Dyrian forces.

            Next might be Iranians fire their first nuke i Teheran airport.

            USA did respond, dint they. Then there was the balistics and then USA bombarded shiit bases in Iraq.

            You RAM most be the fast in fast out version:(

        • Ronald

          Nations buy weapons for themselves to use for self defence.
          No one buys weapons and presumes that in doing so it is buying an “Alliance”. That is a separate political matter.

          • Swift Laggard II

            Not true. Your understanding of international affairs seems very rudimentary

          • Jens Holm

            Thats is far our and against all well kept bad traditions.

            Buying often is expected. S400 form Turkey did have an effect, didnt it – and still do.

    • Rhodium 10

      Murica left his SDF Kurdish ally alone while Turkish army bombed them in Afrin and Northeast Syria…because have economic and strategic interests with Turkey…like Russia has( Pipelines) with Israel ( who ban Saudi/Qatar gas through its territory) and with Turkey ( Turkstream)….

      • Swift Laggard II

        SDF was always ally of convenience. SDF seriously expected US to prioritize them over a NATO ally? A rag tag militia over a strategic nato ally? SDF should be very very happy for the deal they got: money weapons air cover etc. it’s not as if the unislamic state was going to just leave them to live their lives – they would have been massacred by is were it not for Murican intervention. So yeah, they should be extremely pleased with the deal they got

        • Rhodium 10

          Also Syria would have been massacred by terrorist and NATO air support ( like in Libya) if Russia would not have intervened…..SDF was betrayed by USA!…for other side Russia are testing its own made air defense system vs Israeli airstrikes which have a ratio of 50-70% of Interceptions.. but lately about 90%…

    • George King

      Again you are punch drunk and should leave any strategic thinking to those who recognize reality and “dance like a butterfly and sting like a Bee”. Hmm, didn’t Trump try to steal German manufacturer to fight corona virus and under the conditions that they supply only to the US exclusively and not even share much needed emergency services to Germany itself.

      • Swift Laggard II

        the tsionists have stung your men thousands of times and all you have are stup1d slogans. blind fuuls who live in an alternative universe

    • Paul

      Then give us a scenario where Russia can respond to foreign aggression in Syria that wouldn’t make the situation dire. You seem to think that the conflict is simple. Should Russia attack Israel?, what would be the repercussions of that move? Should they directly attack Turkey who borders Syria and can deploy land forces by the tens of thousands? Maybe they should directly attack US forces in Syria. I’m sure the yanks wouldn’t do anything about it. Please give your analysis on how Russia can stop these attacks without making things worse?

      • Swift Laggard II

        That is exactly the point. Russia has no inclination to enforce any security guarantees that should come with the arms you purchase from her, so buying her weapons is a useless and futile venture. But if Russia wanted to I am sure she can put a stop to the Turkish and Israeli attacks. You know it is not a one way street – they also have been extremely careful not to mess with any Russian assets because they know the consequences. But Russia wants to cut deals with all sides, to please Tsionists Turks Saudis Qataris everyone except her allies.

      • Swift Laggard II

        Russia had no problem bombing a turkish convoy last month in idlib. when they feel like they can act apparently

    • chris chuba

      I don’t agree with you (or entirely disagree with you either) but you are making a reasonable argument. People should not treat you like Hasbara troll.
      Where I disagree … Russia does not make promises she does not keep. Her partners know what to expect. Where I agree, maybe too cautious.

      Iran is the best at building local alliances and partnerships. She treats all of her allies as peers and works very hard at it.

      The U.S. is the absolute worst, we treat everyone except for Israel like total dirt. We use bribery, coercion, threats, and still betray them. We accuse Iran of having ‘proxies and surrogates’ but that is sheer projection of what we wish we had but cannot manage to pull off. It’s as if we cannot even imagine what Iran has unless it is by bribery and coercion.

      • Swift Laggard II

        I do not believe that the US is that bad – not from my open source research over the years. If it was that terrible, nations would not work so closely with them. Except perhaps in Latin America and Vietnam, most of the world has a favorable image of the US, despite their many blunders and shortcomings, unless of course you are their enemy. I read that even many Iranians especially the educated middle class have a favorable attitude towards the US. Everywhere you find US it’s because they have something to offer. But whether or not they are a force for good in the world (which is arguable) my argument is that based on my observation and research over the years, a US security guarantee which comes with major weapons purchases (essentially meaning you become a client state of the US) is more valuable, meaningful and potent than engaging with Russia. Russia treats her allies like dirt. In fact in my observation, Russia has no allies, she has clients who she engages only on a transactional basis, and the basis for her engagement is primarily to secure her interests, which in most cases are diametrically opposed to those of her clients. Russi acts like a prostitute – you get anything if you are willing to pay, but that is the limit of her engagement. There is no long term relationship or commitment, and if it is necessary to stab you in the back she will do it without blinking. US is very very unlikely to operate this way. They may discourage you from certain actions because they do not want you to misuse their guarantees, but it is rare for them to throw you under the bus if you are their client. Look at every single relationship Russia has and tell me one in which she is established, steady, stable and in concert with her clients. Even her biggest long term partner India realized Russi has little to offer, and begun moving into the American orbit. How can you imagine you can for instance pressure India by selling Pakis weapons as Russi did some time back just to make a point? It just shows Russia is driven by transactional instincts, not strategic long term alliance considerations. Buy weapons from her if you have no alternative, or you will be very dissapointed on the day when it really matters

      • Jens Holm

        Iran are that because they need it because ot the boycut kept by USA. Befoe that they behve as masters of the universe.

        Your last 5 lines might be a little correct, but as a start, think You should clean Your own house first. Well You cant. It strictly forbidden by Your Goverment and if not its mukra or haram accoding some big book on its dirty pages.

        True we westerns are not like You. It would be nice if You could give a link for something better for all of us. Maybee You even can give us loans :(

        You are not we. Thats fine. But I thonk You also are very much wrong. USA cant be united in everything.

  • Redadmiral

    The symbiotic relarionship between Russia and Syria are overwhelmingly evident. Russia continues to improve it’s defensive weapons capability as is attested to by the 73% success rate of the Pantsir and Bok systems against incoming Cruise missiles. The Pantsir since that 110 cruise missle strike, has been upgraded to the Pantsir SM which can track incoming up to twice the distance, 75K. Russian drones from being well behind their NATO adversaries have jumped way in front of them. While on the other hand Syria has gone from being on the cusp of Defeat 4 and a half years ago have turned that into being on the cusp of victory at present.

    • Swift Laggard II

      The Iranian qoods with their allies Hiz-b-ut-alla and the expeditionary legions of hazaras and afghanis have done the heavy lifting on the ground. without them Russian intervention would have achieved little. Then Russi has the gall to stand aside and let these guys be bombed year in year out. I would not want such an ally. Someone else captured it very well elsewhere: if I was a boxer, i would not want a coach like Pudin

      • George King

        This is why boxers have business managers because typically they have brain damage and coaches tend to come from the former boxers group and suffer the same brain damage (punch drunk). I would put you in the same category from your comments.

        • Swift Laggard II

          My comments are objective. I don’t do stup1d ideology; i do pragmatic analysis and self interest. I know even the Iranians are pissed off mightily at their supposed ally, and they have very long memories. For now they fight, and wait, but one day when they are in a better situation, they will make their anger known at how their men have been sold out by the russi

          • George King

            Your words betray your lack of understanding on global history and events.

          • Swift Laggard II

            what is there to understand? fuulish ideologues who are always trying to excuse away obvious failings from Russia. How many SAA and Iranian legion have died in enemy airstrikes since 2015 while supposedly under Russian air cover? Spare us your rubb1sh and nonsense

          • Jens Holm

            In that world Leaders dont die as long as they have spendables and You dont kill leaders and burn parlaments, where parlaments are made for non parle but fear and bajonets.

          • Jens Holm

            No it doesnt. It supports it very well. It quite sober and neutral. You dont know what neutral and sober is.

            You probatly live in a cotry where all history of Yours were created by firty nationalisme of the worst kind or fx 1946 and after that the fiacos in warfare against Israel and Co.

            And You have learned nothing. Nothing at all. Let me say it as I see it. I was not born when israel was born and would not have supported it – BUT – Syria certainly has shown, they dont deserve Golan at all.

            Now You also has sold Afrin and even more to Turks.You dont clean and optimize Your countries. That goes for Russia as well.

            Ypun are only experts in cheating Yourself and blaming others. A pety there is no Nobel Price for that.

            You dont understand global history at all or at least great parts of it.

        • Sadde

          Bearing in mind that I like both Syria and all of its partners (Hezbollah, Iran and Russia), I must admit that @swiftlaggardii:disqus actually has an important point against Russia’s shortcomings. Russia’s strategy seems to be based on total avoidance of losses and keeping friendship with everyone on both sides simultaneously (US, Israel, Turkey, SA, Europe, Hezbollah, Iran, Syria). This strategy may be great for Russia, and I have nothing against it but it has an inherent weakness vis a vis its allies e.g pulling back air cover for Hezbollah, Iran and Syria for not risking conflict with Turkey or Israel every now and then. For good or bad in the end no honest analyst can ignore this fact.

          • Jens Holm

            Yes. People do forget Russia might not be a friend but has its own agenda. Russia only promised to keep Assads safe.

            I allow me to add, that USA gave half of SDF as a russian problem as well.

            Facts are ignored to much here.

          • Sadde

            No!

            Not comprehensible!

            No!

        • Jens Holm

          Swift Laggard is highly correct.

          Most comments here are comming from blindfolded hooligans. Western weapons always are talked down and You seemes to know nothing about Your enemies as well as logistics.

          If people like You would look at internet and fx see military strength, You would see a lot of You babling talk is nonsense.

          Number one is You insist in knowing nothing about You enemies and fx Nato and others will behave like stupid sitting ducks.

          If You need a job, I can recommend You to my worst enemies for aq top job. Many here even think that their WW1 armies will be attacked by USA and then they will try to kill all those little primitive tin soldiers.

          GET IT. If USA went ro war with Iran or for that matter Turkey, You would have no logistics such as internet, electricity, water, bridges and roads.

          None are as stupid in warfare as You blindfolded hooligans assume.

          I was – when I was 8 to 12 years old and matchboxes was made into tanks on a table or in the garden and each witrh big canons. Here I also did not know, that most tanks are less armed and has smaller kalibers then fx the Russian series of T34 and up.

      • You have to consider:
        1. Russia did not “only” provided the air force for the Syrian war, it provides Intel, military equipment, relief supplies and know how on many different levels.
        2. Syria (as well as Iran) are isolated internationally, Russia is one of the few countries not complicit in it. And by because of it stand, Russia was sanctioned and villanized by half of the world.

        3. Russia maintained practically a restricted No-Fly zone over Syria’s west with the stationing of their advanced air-defense systems, and by Veto in the UN security counsel it protected Syria from many Resolutions, which would else led to a defeat of Bashar.
        4. At last it is just Russias beeing in the game, that all the players still are able to fight, without Russian presence, NATO would have serious bombed Syria years ago.

        • Jens Holm

          WEll, You should wonder why there are those boycuts to Iran, Russia and Syria.

          But You dont. Thats strictly forbidden.

          Assads and later supported took solution 3 and now they are killing each other very well. USA did not need help form Nato.

          And NATO said no to anything in Syria. So why should they say yes just because You have forgot all about it and put in another lie about Nato.

          Nato is invitited BACK by the Bagdad Governess. Therefore it very strange for me to see most of the most illitarrate Arabistanis say they should leave being enemies.

          WE are not in the USA-IRAN conflict. We actually are fighting the ISIS leftovers but main are trainers for the Iraqi military forces.

          We still dont understand those ballistics. And we only are there because we were promised safety by Bagdads.

          I have no relations to Iran. My own oppinion is let them do as they wish unless they dont harm us. To me they have created their own dark. Its fone if as many as possible with weapons in ME kill each other. We have no friends there. Some might een give a + + . because You probatly wont send them to here in coffins.

          • I am sorry Jens, but my reply was to Swift Laggard II, therefore I am not sure if we talk about the same subject my friend.

            By the way I am not an Arabistanis, though I am not sure if it was related to my person or in general.

  • gustavo

    This valid also for Iran and Hezbolah forces.

  • Peter Jennings

    Not only did US sanctions boost the Russian economy but their meddling in the ME has made their ‘enemy’ stronger and more capable. I wonder what other gems are to be gleaned from the failing foreign policy of a failing empire.

    Free popcorn maybe?

  • Swift Laggard II

    I did not know southfront is inhabited by shallow fuuls and ideologues. Now I know. Enjoy yourselves.

  • Jens Holm

    Thats how it is.

    The “has doubled” is a relative. He dont know that at all.

  • Willing Conscience (The Truths

    And for the last 2 years it hasn’t been costing the Russians anything more than they’d normally be spending, most of the Syrian campaigns military expenditure is allocated from the existing research and development budget.
    So they would’ve been spending that money anyway even if there was no war, but as this article points out, they did all the research and training in real life combat situations, making the research/development and training even more effective.
    So for the last 2 years it’s cost the Russians no more than they would’ve spent normally on their military budget, but thanks to the continuation of the Syrian war, they got real life combat experience as a bonus, so why would the Russians be in a hurry to stop that, oh hang on, they weren’t, mmmm.