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Russia's Arctic Expansion

This is a discussion on Russia's Arctic Expansion within the Geo-strategic Issues forum, part of the Global Defense & Military category; Not trolling at all, I just don't agree with your reading of the situation in relation to what Norway will ...


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Old September 29th, 2014   #31
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Not trolling at all, I just don't agree with your reading of the situation in relation to what Norway will and will not allow. What I have stated is what I know to be correct based on my contact with the Norwegian Foreign Office over the past couple of weeks. I sell to Russia, I have to know what I can't and can't sell and who I can and can't sell to. Unless the situation changes I can sell to gas projects and non deep water oil projects, I also have a list of companies I can't sell to. So far Norway hasn't defined what deepwater is, neither has Europe, the US defines it as over 400m.

And yes I do have a vested interest in the conflict being over and sanctions removed, it makes my job far easier when unworkable sanctions like this don't exist, they are IMO causing as much grief to European companies as they are to Russia.
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Old September 29th, 2014   #32
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Which is what the US has been doing in Central and South America since forever, there is no difference between Russian policy and the Monroe Doctrine IMO, even though Kerry has said it's dead (yeah right).
I have no interest in making moral judgements here. It's politics, morality doesn't exist there. I knew the state of Finland during the Cold War, but I didn't know that it was a term (finlandisation). It's interesting, and certainly likely that Russia seems to be pursuing a similar state with regards to the Baltics. I'm not sure it will work though. Finland had intelligent and flexible leadership, while the Baltics are enamored with their small-town nationalism. I'm not sure countries that host SS veteran parades will be able to adapt flexibly to a complex situation like Finland was. On the other hand NATO isn't going anywhere, it certainly isn't losing a world war like the 3rd Reich was. So the Baltics have a powerful backer. I think they will choose confrontation.
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Old October 1st, 2014   #33
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Two new Arctic Brigades will be formed, one possibly the 80th Motor-Rifles near Murmansk, and another un-named in Yamal. ELINT stations, and radar pickets are planned on many of the Arctic islands.

”енис œок€ƒˆин - А€к‚и‡еская г€ƒппи€овка
”об€о пожалова‚Œ в жƒ€нал *ос‚овского ž€ла - А€к‚и‡еские б€игад‹

Meanwhile Pacific Fleet Marines landed on an Arctic islands (Vrangel' Island). It was part of Vostok-2014 exercises.

https://www.google.com/maps/place/Wr...dca925085b4bc3
http://twower.livejournal.com/1437404.html

All of this points to their intent to gain the ability to physically put boots on the ground across the Arctic.
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Old November 4th, 2014   #34
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Do you know more about this?
So here's confirmation of my prognosis about 2017-18 for the mass production of the next-gen platforms. Khalitov, a representative from UVZ, on a public radio talk show, states that they are preparing for serial production of the Armata tank in the 2017-18 timeframe. The interview is in Russian, and unfortunately no text, just a youtube video. Let me know if you need help with translation.

Gur Khan attacks!:
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Old November 4th, 2014   #35
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So here's confirmation of my prognosis about 2017-18 for the mass production of the next-gen platforms. Khalitov, a representative from UVZ, on a public radio talk show, states that they are preparing for serial production of the Armata tank in the 2017-18 timeframe. The interview is in Russian, and unfortunately no text, just a youtube video. Let me know if you need help with translation.

Gur Khan attacks!:
Thank you for bring this to my attention. Russian is my first language so I should be good. 2018 seems like a bit of a delay, IIRC Armata was scheduled for 2016? Curious how he neglected to mention the T-80 as part of the fleet.
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Old November 5th, 2014   #36
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Thank you for bring this to my attention. Russian is my first language so I should be good. 2018 seems like a bit of a delay, IIRC Armata was scheduled for 2016? Curious how he neglected to mention the T-80 as part of the fleet.
It was scheduled for 2015. Originally LRIP was to start in 2014 with experimental exploitation to commence side by side with state trials. Then in 2015 serial deliveries were set to begin.

The T-80 has mostly been phased out. There's a few still left, but they're firmly in the minority and on their way out.
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Old November 5th, 2014   #37
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Mokrushin actually participated in Kara Summer 2014, which is a Rosneft expedition to the Arctic. His posts on the subject can be read here, with the tag экспедиция. They are, of course, in Russia but even the photos are worth looking at.

Денис Мокрушин
I sold all the lighting for Akademik Treshnikov the vessel used in the expedition, one of the most challenging lighting specs for any vessel we had done up to that time.

Argentina were looking at building a sister vessel a couple of year back.

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Old January 21st, 2015   #38
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Update time.

The new OSC is called Northern Fleet, not North. It appears that the VMF will take charge of the arctic expansion.

Денис Мокрушин - О новом ОСК

The 80th Arctic Motor-Rifles Brigade has been formed, with an unclear structure, and MT-LB VMK for it's standard vehicles. New vehicles are expected in the next few months, currently in trials. What's interesting is the amount of infrastructure that's been built, including a new school and kindergarten, and apartments for officers and NCOs.

Денис Мокрушин - 80-я омсбр
bmpd - 80-я мотострелковая (арктическая) бригада СФ-ОСК "Север" получила Боевое Знамя
Денис Мокрушин - О 80-й арктической

A second arctic brigade is planned in 2016.

Денис Мокрушин - ОСК "Север"

They're also getting an S-400 regiment this year.

prokhor_tebin: С-400 на Севере

Photos from the second naval convoy to sail into the arctic with troops and supplies, part of the program of setting up Russian military presence on the various arctic islands.

«Второй Арктический конвой и не только» в блоге «Фотофакты» - Сделано у нас

SpetzStroy has completed another military base on an arctic island in the Land of Frantz Iosif.

«Спецстрой сдал в эксплуатацию в Арктике третий военный городок» в блоге «Армия и Флот» - Сделано у нас

And the MoD is conducting mobility trials of various vehicles in the arctic, probably to determine what kind of equipment the arctic troops actually need.

Минобороны *оссии направило колонну военной техники в Арктику

Old (November 2014) photos of the Temp airfield on the island Kotelniy, in the arctic ocean. The airfield was only reopened last year.

Добро пожаловать в журнал *остовского Орла - Вертолеты на аэродроме "Темп" на острове Котельный
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Old January 23rd, 2015   #39
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The Russian committment to their Arctic territory is something we in Canada can only dream about. We might actually build 5 AOPVs and an icebreaker. Expect completion with the disappearance of the polar ice-cap.
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Old August 9th, 2015   #40
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Some interesting updates. The 80th Arctic Motor-Rifles have been formed for some time now. Here's a little info on a recent training exercise with OSC North, where they dispatched a btln. Previously the brigade was confirmed to have MT-LBs for APCs, which is a logical choice. They have excellent mobility and cost basically nothing (giant stockpiles still exist from the Soviet era). They have also been used in Arctic conditions by another motor-rifle unit (the 200th MRBde near Murmansk).

However new tracked (presumably unarmored) vehicles have also been spotted. They look like the TTM 4902, which was earlier proposed for Arctic Brigade use. The planned new armored arctic vehicles are yet to be seen in the metal.

bmpd - Ÿе€вое ƒ‡ение пе€вой а€к‚и‡еской б€игад‹

The brigade has also taken delivery of 4-wheel ATVs, and possibly other equipment. The Army-2015 forum certainly provides food for thought, though do keep in mind that those are not MoD displays, but rather done by the manufacturer.

The giant arctic MT-LBu is particularly interesting. It's certainly a better option then the current MT-LBs, with the decent combat module, and dozer blade (not to mention much greater internal volume). However if it does get purchased, it would likely mean that the arctic vehicle program is in trouble, and a stop-gap is necessary. Technically a filial of UVZ is responsible for the new Arctic armored platforms, so money shouldn't be the issue. Nor can it be that hard to armor a DT-30P, and stick an unmanned combat module on the roof.

alexeyvvo - А€мия-2015: ‚е…ника для а€к‚и‡ески… б€игад
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Old August 9th, 2015   #41
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This has been going on silently for quite some time, but it's reached a new level. A new Military District in all but name is being created. It will be called Operational-Strategic Command North. It will include the Northern Fleet, and a number of land forces and air force units. A new set of bases on arctic islands is being built including a big one on the Novosibirsk islands.

A special new type of unit, called the 99th Tactical Unit, will mix coastal AShMs with Pantsyr-1 SHORAD.

OSC North will include the 200th Motor-Rifles and 66th Marines Brigade.

”об€о пожалова‚Œ в жƒ€нал *ос‚овского ž€ла - 99 ‚ак‚и‡еская г€ƒппа Севе€н‹й Фло‚
”об€о пожалова‚Œ в жƒ€нал *ос‚овского ž€ла - 5‹й ’оенн‹й žк€ƒг на базе Севе€ного „ло‚а

I'm going to see what else I can dig up. I know they conducted several large scale exercises, including using nuclear icebreakers to lead VMF taskforces to the islands, and to conduct landing operations there. They can currently fly Mi-26s and apparently An-74s there.

So the question has to be what is it all actually for?

All that expense and fire power just to reinforce raw material exploration and shipping rights or is it something much more?

Do Russia see the arctic as a way of inching closer to US territory realising that bases in the Caribbean and South America are just not feasible? US alliances with Cuba have made that option impossible.



I can't help thinking that this is a huge commitment and the intentions are much more far reaching. This is to defend Russia's vast northern border from NATO. Russia is rapidly becoming a military first nation like North Korea.

http://www.businessinsider.com/chart...-arctic-2015-8
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Old August 9th, 2015   #42
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So the question has to be what is it all actually for?

All that expense and fire power just to reinforce raw material exploration and shipping rights or is it something much more?
Russian political elites see the Arctic as the new Siberia in terms of resources, and act accordingly.

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Do Russia see the arctic as a way of inching closer to US territory realising that bases in the Caribbean and South America are just not feasible? US alliances with Cuba have made that option impossible.
US alliance with Cuba?

Seriously?

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I can't help thinking that this is a huge commitment and the intentions are much more far reaching. This is to defend Russia's vast northern border from NATO. Russia is rapidly becoming a military first nation like North Korea.
Not even close. Russia is still the oligarchy it was. Serious internal shifts will have to happen to change that. Just look at the elaborate dance they're doing over gas transit. Turkish Stream, North Stream 2, etc. They've made a serious effort to shift their trade away from the west, but the nature of the state has not changed.

A very misleading map. These are not plans. This is what is already there. This is not future investment. It's also not up to date by a significant margin. It doesn't include the combined SAM-AShM teams deployed, or the new 80th Motor-Rifles.
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Old August 9th, 2015   #43
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Russian political elites see the Arctic as the new Siberia in terms of resources, and act accordingly.
Sure but it still remains a huge investment bearing in mind Russia is not about to access those resources any time soon.

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US alliance with Cuba?

Seriously?
It has already begun. Trade links are about to be re-established. A military alliance may not be on the cards but the old hostilities seem to be in the past.

New York plays catch up on trade with Cuba

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Not even close. Russia is still the oligarchy it was. Serious internal shifts will have to happen to change that. Just look at the elaborate dance they're doing over gas transit. Turkish Stream, North Stream 2, etc. They've made a serious effort to shift their trade away from the west, but the nature of the state has not changed.
The political system is not the point. The point is that it's military seems to be rapidly expanding in relation to it's shrinking GDP. At a time when most of Russia has archaic infrastructure and people are generally poor; just like N Korea where top priority is given to military spending to protect the elite and not the people.

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A very misleading map. These are not plans. This is what is already there. This is not future investment. It's also not up to date by a significant margin. It doesn't include the combined SAM-AShM teams deployed, or the new 80th Motor-Rifles.
Date of the website is April 2015. Difficult to find an up to date map in a continually changing situation; it gives a good idea of the massive scale of the investment and proximity to N America.
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Old August 9th, 2015   #44
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Sure but it still remains a huge investment bearing in mind Russia is not about to access those resources any time soon.
Well a lot of this was started when prices were high, and it looked like Russia might make use of them sooner rather then later. That having been said, it's not that huge of an investment. Not compared to other things they're spending money on

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It has already begun. Trade links are about to be re-established. A military alliance may not be on the cards but the old hostilities seem to be in the past.
So no alliance. As is Russia has good relations with a few Latin American nations, but realistically I don't think Russia wants bases there. There's not much point to having bases there.

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The political system is not the point. The point is that it's military seems to be rapidly expanding in relation to it's shrinking GDP. At a time when most of Russia has archaic infrastructure and people are generally poor; just like N Korea where top priority is given to military spending to protect the elite and not the people.
The Russian government has actually spent a lot on infrastructure in the past 10 years. And they have cut planned spending quite sharply. That having been said, they do spend a lot on the military. More then they should. This doesn't make them North Korea.

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Date of the website is April 2015. Difficult to find an up to date map in a continually changing situation; it gives a good idea of the massive scale of the investment and proximity to N America.
Eh. Massive compared to what? Their military investment elsewhere is much bigger.

I don't think it gives a good idea of their new investment at all considering it ignores it.It also puts dual use infrastructure on there.
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Old August 12th, 2015   #45
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Some updates, aerial views and details on Russian airfields in the Arctic being rebuilt. One will apparently be a semi-permanent base, the rest just backup facilities for a sudden buildup.

Naryan-Mar.

Денис Мокрушин - *еконструкция аэродрома "Нарьян-Мар"

Alykel.

Денис Мокрушин - *еконструкция аэродрома "Алыкель"

Vorkuta which is going to hold a MiG-31 squadron, and 9 Tu-95s, 1 A-50, 9 Il-78, and 2 Il-76.

Денис Мокрушин - *еконструкция аэродрома "Воркута" (Советский)"

Anadyr'.

Денис Мокрушин - *еконструкция аэродрома "Анадырь"
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