Surprise or Deception? The dilemma in every planner's mind.

Discussion in 'Defence & Strategic Issues' started by SATISH, Sep 2, 2010.

  1. SATISH

    SATISH DFI Technocrat Stars and Ambassadors

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    "All wars are based on deception"

    "The enemy must not know what hit him"

    These are the two major phrases used in planning a doctrine. The enemy must be killed before he even gets the slightest clue of which direction the attack came from. This can be achieved by using two basic keywords which most of us armchair generals aren't Unfamiliar with. Surprise and Deception. These words and the execution of these two in the battle field and on paper by the military thinkers is what decides how the course of war will be.

    There are many examples in the modern warfare where both have been equally successful and is hard to separate both surprise and deception. But when planning only one of these can be employed.

    Deceiving the enemy and overwhelming him is what the military commanders always want to do. But sometimes it backfires. We are here to discuss about how our cold start doctrine works according to these 2 basic words namely "deceit" and "surprise"

    Deception:

    This is done mainly by feeding the enemy with false information and making him feel that he is always better placed and over confident. He is made to think that the enemy is no match for him and can be routed out, while he actually dosent see your plan until it is too late either to relocate his troops or establish a proper supply chain to endure the attack.

    Surprise:

    This is to keep your enemy guessing till the last moment of your attack and overwhelm him. This is also called as Pre- emptive strike so as to neutralize your enemy's forward defensive posts when he least expects it.

    We are here to discuss on which part must our doctrine lay more emphasis on and how can we possible do it.

    Any valid inputs will be valuable.
     
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  3. SATISH

    SATISH DFI Technocrat Stars and Ambassadors

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    Let us start with World war II our analysis on these two and we have different battles that teach us a lot of things. Here we will discuss how two great minds, Cluaswitz and Zhukovsky tried to attack and counter-attack each other and where they went wrong.

    German Offensive on the Eastern Front:

    It all started with Operation Barbarossa. The German air force with precision strike on most of Russia's forward airbases rendered almost the whole of Red Air force unusable. This is one of the best example of pre- emptive strike that was huge and well co-ordinated (remember the Pearl Harbour incident? Both resemble the same). In this co-ordinated well planned attack on the Red air force caught the whole of Russia in shock and awe. The same time when people were thinking and fighting in trenches like the previous war, the Germans had totally changed the tactics and doctrines. They started a new kind of warfare called as the "mechanized warfare" to surprise the enemies on the ground. The also co-ordinated air strikes and softening the targets before the infantry marched in with massed amount of fire with automatic weapons ( that was possible because they designed weapons based on their doctrine). The shots which were fired got closer to 300 yards rather than the previous 700 yards. The German infantry moved faster then usual and didnt give time for the opponent to amass enough reserves. This surprised the Russian central command and needed time to think hard and owing to the Russian land mass they had to relocate to the Ural mountains and make their plans there Which would bring a whole new meaning to stop the rolling behemoth of the Nazi army and the ultimate defeat of the Nazi forces in Germany.

    Birth of new weapons and War fighting capabilities of the Soviet Forces post 1941:

    After operation Barbarossa everyone knew that "surprise" triumphed. But General Zhukovsky and Stalin (yeah they are the psychotic mass murderers) harbored plans that would not only make the Soviet Union a leader in Military technology but the rolling behemoth of the nazi army in its back foot. This is when the attrition war started. The soviets knew that first of all the German army must be slowed down to get themselves time to think and develop. Who else can do it better than the Red snipers? Snipers are specially trained sharp shooters who can stop a batallion on their tracks and strike fear into the hearts of the advancing army. Stealth and range are a snipers's major advantages. It was a difficult task for the Germans first to spot a sniper and neutralize him, thus slowing down the objectives reached by the German troops. The Russians also knew how harsh the climate would be during the winter season and here started the war of attrition.

    In the mean time the Russians in their workshops in the Ural mountains came up with a new strategy. They knew very well that the Panzers and the Ne 109 were technologically advanced pieces of equipment and the production rate was very slow. So the Soviets went on to produce something cheap and robust and on par with the German war machine that can be produced in large numbers. Out came the IL-2 strike aircraft and the T 34 tank.
     
  4. Ray

    Ray The Chairman Defence Professionals Moderator

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    Here is Operation Barbarossa in a nutshell.

    Operation Barbarossa

    Clausweitz contracted cholera and died on Nov. 16, 1831, shortly after his return to Breslau as far as my memory goes.

    World War II commenced on 1 September 1939, with the invasion of Poland by Germany.

    As Soviet forces suffered reverses on all fronts, Zhukov was compelled to sign the Directive of Peoples' Commissariat of Defense No. 3 which called for a series of counterattacks. Arguing against the plans laid out by the directive, he was proven correct when they failed with heavy losses. On July 29, Zhukov was sacked as Chief of General Staff after recommending to Stalin that Kiev be abandoned. Stalin refused and over 600,000 men were captured after the city was encircled by the Germans. That October, Zhukov was given command of the Soviet forces defending Moscow, relieving General Semyon Timoshenko.
     
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2010
  5. SATISH

    SATISH DFI Technocrat Stars and Ambassadors

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    The new Red armed forces:

    The Russians after their experience in their first assault were sure that they had to develop their own strategy to defeat the German Blitzkreig and hence they needed simple weapons that matched the Germans. As they didnt have time to develop a technologically advance ones and couldn't rebuild their factories they found ingenious methods to defeat the Germany's technologically advanced weaponry. The T 34 did the same thing. The T 34 carried the advanced 80mm gun which had a longer range and was a medium tank as it could maneuver easily in the Russian slug rather than the heavier Tiger tanks. The most groundbreaking part of the design of the T 34 was the "sloping turret armour". This helped the tank to maintain lesser weight by defeating the tank rounds because they tend to bounce away. The tank was medium weight and hence could out flank the well trained and well armoureed German tanks. The greatest advantage that the T 34 had was its ease of manufacture. This is the second largest manufactured tank in the whole world. This helped the Russians to overwhelm the German war machine.
    The T 34 because of its ease of manufacture and capability to hit the tigers at longer range and the capability to outflank them became the hero of WW2. This combined with the IL 2 was devastating and then the battle of Kursk, the largest tank battle in modern era took place. Every one knows that the tank with better firepower and mobility wins. The Russian tank commanders used Ingenious ways to stop the advancing German tanks by running into them. With heavy losses the Russians were capable of overwhelming the Germans.
    After the Withdrawal from Moscow the Germans had to withdraw to the marshes in Russia that proved fatal for them in the Russian winter as they were ill-prepared and ill equipped to handle the Russian winter.

    This was how the German "Surprise" was defeated by the Russians with surprise. But they paid a huge cost in form of lives of the people and they couldnt break through the German stronghold until Operation Bagration took place.
     
  6. SATISH

    SATISH DFI Technocrat Stars and Ambassadors

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    Sir,
    It was still their ideas that the whole of ww2 was fought on.
     
  7. pankaj nema

    pankaj nema Senior Member Senior Member

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    Today the modern battle field is becoming digital .The growing use of UAVs ,satellites ,AWACS and other reconnaisance tools on either side will make surprise and deception difficult.

    The country which shortens the The " SENSOR TO SHOOTER LOOP" wins the battle.
    The killer drones have shown what real time intelligence is all about.

    With respect to the Cold Start doctrine :

    1. The surprise element will come from para commandos who will dropped behind enemy lines
    2 . Since there is a good deal of information about the presence of the ARMY of the enemy , the idea is to "take him out" or damage him with massive firepower BEFORE , our ARMY comes in contact with the enemy's army.

    The Cold start doctrine also relies on multiple "shallow" thrusts along several axis and destroying the COMBAT capability rather than taking territory.
     

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