Sunday, April 18, 2021

How "Stretching" Looks like.

Andrei Raevsky (The Saker) made an astute operational-strategic observation yesterday when noted that:

Now you can see how it looks like, observing how 4 Baltic and Northern Fleets' BDKs (Large Amphibious Ships) pass through Bosporus yesterday on their way to the Black Sea.

These ships are of a good ol' Ropucha-class (pr.775) of the Soviet times (many of them were built in Poland) and are capable of hauling a variety of armored vehicles ranging from tanks to APCs and 300+ personnel of naval infantry (marines). So, once you add these guys to the already substantial organic amphibious component of the Black Sea Fleet, now augmented with 10 or so of Serna-class fast landing craft. Well, you get the idea--Russia can land, if need be, at least one full brigade of marines anywhere along the Black Sea coast and Ukraine, certainly, is forced now to consider what it has to do and what forces it needs to allocate along its coast to at least hold this force off for a little while. 

All these deployments are performed by Russia in order to remove any idiotic thoughts from whatever is running Ukraine from Kiev and make sure that they do not attempt any moves on LDNR. Some people go further and even propose that Russia, actually, has everything in place to solve Ukraine's issue once and for all. Yes, that is true, Russia has enough forces to dispose of the proto-Nazi Ukrainian state but will she? I don't know, but it is an option which people in Kiev view as not entirely improbable, so it remains active and contributes to Ukraine's strategic confusion (not that they ever resided outside this confused state), which plays in favor of LDNR. 

Obviously, once mighty Albion, after Biden Admin recalled two US Navy DDGs from their Black Sea deployment, decided to show that London still matters and Royal Navy announced that it will be sending two Type 45 destroyer and Type 23 frigate to the Black Sea in an apparent show of support for Ukraine's regime:

Type 23  frigates are good ol' work horses of Royal Navy and are used primarily in ASW role, granted that they carry good ol' Harpoons (8 in total) and Sea Ceptor AD missiles, claimed to be able to fight off "saturation attacks" by super-sonic anti-shipping missiles. Type 45, which is much newer class of destroyers, carries the same Harpoons (8 in total) and is known as a dedicated air-defense ship carrying Aster AD complex. So, just another (European) iteration of US Navy's DDG of Arleigh Burke-class, albeit with a smaller AD missile load. Russia is trembling from fear and is sending diplomatic mail to London constantly begging for this terrifying British naval might to be recalled (wink, wink). I, personally, think that London, sending these two ships to the Black Sea, simply wants to remind everyone that it still exists and is somehow relevant to a massive geopolitical game three giants of US, China and Russia are playing. You know, glorious history, phantom pains from lost empire and greatness. Well, you get my drift. Moscow is "impressed", not. 

Alexander, being a British analyst and journalist has a better insight into the British thinking. So, listen to his excellent description of British reasons. 

I am glad that Alexander mentions Crimean War and its history and Tennyson (or Iron Maiden, depending on preferences) and the Light Brigade. Enjoy his voice from within UK.

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