Ukraine needs to pay close attention to the growing numbers of the Russian armed forces. It seems that the Russian command plans to continue the war by relying on numbers rather than combat skills.
That’s according to Lieutenant General Mykhailo Zabrodskyi, First Deputy Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada Committee on National Security, Defense, and Intelligence, who penned an oped for Ukrinform, entitled "Partial mobilization in Russia: things aren’t that simple."
"Three hundred thousand personnel is not a small operational-strategic quantity... This number of servicemen is approximately 60 to 100 combined military brigades. As you know, everything depends on the assigned task and staffing. We will not frighten ourselves with the prospects of such incredible and at the same time unreal, even for the Russian army’s capabilities, army groupings being created. Those called up for service will be distributed to replenish the losses and personnel shortages in the already existing military units and groupings. Some of them can be used to form new ones. We don’t know the true intentions of the Russian General Staff, so for relative objectivity, we should conditionally divide the 300,000 mentioned in half. In this case, the number of brigades potentially likely to be formed is reduced – to the range between 30 and 50. Let's take the average number 40 as a base," Zabrodskyi said.
In his opinion, even such an ephemeral grouping is not a trifle at all. It gives the Russian command the opportunity to additionally form 80 to 120 battalion tactical groups. "This number of troops is comparable to the size of the Russian invasion army in the spring of this year! However, thousands of people sporting military uniforms are not brigades or battalions. Unsurprisingly, the main question is the following. Four dozen combined military brigades imply about 1,200 tanks, up to 4,000 IFVs or APCs, about 1,600 atillery guns and MLR systems. The question expands into two. Where will they get them? What exactly will these samples be and what will be their technical condition?" Zabrodskyi emphasized.
According to the lawmaker, Russia does has plenty of depots, warehouses, arsenals, so estimated quantitative indicators seem to allow the Russian Federation to equip a larger number of combined military units. At the same time, the lieutenant general recalled that the newest or not too old BMP-3 IFVs and T-72B2 MBTs began to rapidly vanish back in April, and since early summer, the main replenishments of the Russian occupation forces in terms of tanks and IFVs included T-62s, BMP-1s, and MTLBs. So, according to Zabrodskyi, apparently, Russian stocks of military equipment, even those of mid-20th century, can also exhaust.
At the same time, an experienced military officer warned against taking lightly the increase in the number of Russian troops at the expense of the current “partial mobilization.”
"The most dangerous thing for us, and certainly justified for the enemy, is only one of the so far potential outcomes of Russian partial mobilization. The use on the territory of Ukraine of any additional number of replenished or newly formed units will give the Russian command an expanded opportunity to apply its favorite principle of military strategy by (Prussian general - ed.) Clausewitz - the massing of forces at a selected area. Such mass is capable of relegating to the background the issues of motivation, level of training and equipment. The possible consequences of this can be extremely destructive for the Armed Forces of Ukraine. "It seems that the Russian command is planning to continue this war by employing numbers, not skills," Zabrodsky noted.
He added that it would be quite appropriate for Ukraine to take preventive measures as early as today.
As Ukrinform reported earlier, on September 21, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree on partial mobilization in Russia. According to the Kremlin chief, the decree applies to military reservists, primarily those who have served in the ranks of the armed forces, have certain military accounting specialties, as well as relevant experience. Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu announced that some 300,000 reservists would be called up as part of partial mobilization.