CIA HISTORICAL REVIEW PROGRAM RELEASE AS9
Soviet Policy During
the Next Phase
of Arms Control in Europe
Special National Intelligence Estimate
This Special National Intelligence Estimate represents the views ofthe Director of Central Intelligencetiu-in- .'nil assistance of thc US Intelligence Community.
Soviet Policy During
the Next Phase
of Arms Control in Europe
Information available as of8 washe preparation of this Special National InrciUgcnce Estimate.
7/ie following intelligence organizations participated
in the preparation of this Estimate:
The Central Intelligence Agency
The Defense Intelligence Agency
The National Security Agency
The Bureau ol Intelligence and Research.
Department ot State
The OH.ce ol the Deputy Cine? ol Slatl lor (mergence. Department of (he Army
Tlie Office ol the Direclor of Naval Intelligence, Department ot ihe Navy
The Office ot the Assisiunt Chiel ol Stalf. Intelligence. Department ot the Air Force The Director of Intelligence. Headauaiters, Marine Corps
Ihis Estimate was approved for publication by the National Foreign Intotogcncc Board.
Neulial and Nonaligned
NATO and Warsaw Pad Forces Within Ihcne
We judge (hai (he Soviets and their alliesumber or interrelated military, political, and economic reasons to engage the West inarms control:
To improve the correlation of forces and to reduce what they perceive as NATO's capability tourprise atiack.
To impede NATO's force modernization plans and to prcvenl or impede NATO's deployment of advanced technology weapons.
To demonstrate the "new thinking" in Soviet foreign and domestic policy.
To appeal to foreign and domestic public opinioneneralized way, while adding to Moscow's overall arms control posture and enhancing the USSR's imagerustworthy, rational player in the inicrnational arena.
To reduce the threat from NATO and thereby reduce lhe urgency on ihc part of ihc Soviet Union to match or bcucr NATO's high-icchnolugy modernization programs.
To make it politically easier io allocate economic resources within lhe Soviet Union from the defense sector lo thc civilian sector to carry out perestroyka.
We believe the Soviets and ihcir allies prefer to negotiate with NATO to achieve mutual reductions of conventional forces. Militarily, it makes more sense to iradc force reductions, therebyalance in thc correlation of forces. However, thc Warsaw Paci probably realizes thai negotiating an agreement with NATO thai is acceptable to ihc Soviets could takemight not even be possible.
In the short lerm (up lo twoe believe Ihc Pact will pursue aaimed ai reducing thc West's perception of thc Soviet threat in ihe expectation that this course will make it difficult for NATO governments to maintain or increase defense spending. The Pact will engage NATO in the Conventional Stability Talks and probably will introduce sweeping proposals for asymmetric reductions.
We predict thai, when formal negotiations concerning conventional forces in the Atlantic-lo-thc-Urals zone begin, the Warsaw Fact will quicklvormal version of its public diplomacymighl'cvcnraft treaty very early in thc negotiations. It will probably insist on an initial discussion of data regarding asymmetries between thc two sides' forces and will probably suggestorking group on data.
Thc Warsaw Pact states will not accept the current NATO proposal, which in effect calls on the Pact to take giganlic cuts in tanks and artillery for mi-nor cuts on thc NATO side so lhat ihcrc is parity between thc Pact and NATO. Kor example, this would mean the Pact would have to withdraw or destroy0 tanks while NATO would withdraw or destroyanks.
Outside of thc negotiating process itself, for political effect, the Soviets may also take unilateral initiatives:
We judge the Soviets could garner significant political gains in Western Europe at tolerable risks by unilaterally removing some of Iheir forces from Eastern Europe, especially all from'Hungary. Thc evidence on Soviet timing and conditions is insufficient to predict with confidence when andithdrawal announcement might be made.
Given thc West German concern about short-range nuclear-capable forces, it is possible that the Soviets mightesture by unilaterally withdrawing some short-range ballistic missile launchers from Eastern Europe; however, we judge lhc likelihood ofove to be low for lhc period of this Estimate.
The Sovicls may atlcmpt to portray force restructuringnilateral force reduction; however, wc judge lhat the ongoing restructuring of thc Soviet ground forces is intended primarily lo make units more cffeclive for prolonged convcniional combai operations against NATO.
We judec (hat, among our NATO Allies, France will be lhc most resistant to potential Soviet gambits, with thc Unitedtrong second. Of the majoi partners, the Federal Republic or Germany will be thc most responsive to such ploys, because of ils strong desire to reduce defense spending arid to reduce the chance of the country becoming Europe's nuclear battleground. The challenge for the United Slates and the resl of NATO will be lo continue the ongoing NATO modernization, while ai lhc same lime negotiatingossible agreementore sophisticated adversary in an environment where thc public pcrceplion of lhc Warsaw Pact Ihrcai has been soflencd significantly.
Economic Con side
Eastern Europe: Thc Risk of
Western Europe: Implications for Ihe NATO Alliance
A Sovicl Short-Range Nuclear force13
Warsaw Pact Ground Forces
Constrsiwls on NATO Miliury
Implications for ihc Uniied States
Annex: Soviet Perceptions of NATO's Military
Soviet-Warsaw Pact Conventional Arms Control Proposals
orbachev proposes at the Eastparty congress that NATO and the Pad make "substantial" reductions in all components of their ground and "tactical" air forces. Units would be disbanded and weapons either destroyed or stored on national territories. Tactical nuclear weapons would also be reduced. The area of reductions would be all of Europe from the Atlantic to the Urals. Dependable means of verification would be used, including on-site inspections "If need be."
zone would be East Germany. Ciechoslovakia. Poland, and Hungary; and on the Western side. West Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium.and Denmark.
he Political Consultative Committee repeats virtually verbatim the PCC declaration6 and reiterates that the Pact's militaryis defensive andact-NATO discussion of doctrines.
he Warsaw Pact's PoliticalCommittee issues the Budapest Appeal that formally "blesses" Gorbachev's proposal. The Pact leaders call for mutual NATO and Pact reductionsilitarysoonurther cut byf ano:ersonnel. Ground forces and "lactical strike aviation" and tactical nuclear weapons musi be reduced. The qualification "if need be" is dropped in discussing on-siiebut the Pact's "verification"proposalsonly lhe reductions of forces.
n Prague. Gorbachev acknowledges there are. "of course, "asymmetries in the armed forces ofthe Pact and NATO and says the USSR Javors rectifying inequalities by reductions by the side thatumerical advantage.
May liSJ; Polish leader Jaruzelskilan callingradual withdrawal/reduction of nuclear delivery systems, especially thoseangeraJualof conventional weapons, anin the nature of militaryo they would be "exclusively defensive."confidence-and-lecurity-building measures, and mechanisms for sirici verification. On the Eastern side, the
oreign Minister Shevardnadzethat the Soviets are willing toon Ihe issue of dual-capable weaponIn Bonn, he says the USSR (and Pact) want to discuss the delivery systems within the context Of the conventional forces talks, but would be witling io negotiate on the nuclear warheads for the systems separately.
orbachev proposes to Presidentin Moscow thai reductions be taken in phases:
Identify and eliminate asymmetries.
Make further mutual reductions of upen with their equipment.
Make still further reductions so that NATO and the Pact will have only "defensive" forces.
he Political Consultative Committee issues another statement that endorsesproposal to the President.
oviel Defense Minister Yazav tells the US Secretary of Defense that the Warsaw Pact summit leadersithdrawal0 Soviet personnel from Eastern Europe in return for an unspecified NATO reduction from the southern region.
The Warsaw Pact's public diplomacy on conventional arms control hasumber of publicby Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, proposals from thc Warsaw Pact's summit-level PoliticalCommittee, and hundred* of statements and press articles by lower ranking officials, all of which have stressed lhc Sovicl Union's deiiirc for aarms reduction agreement (sec inset).
la public statements, in the negotiations in Vienna, and in diplomatic contacts with the West. Soviet and East European spokesmen have emphasized thePact's willingness to negotiate with NATO large bui mulual reductions of conventional ground force units with iheir equipment and what Ihc Pact terms "tactical strikeince Gorbachev first raised thc possibility in Pragueacthave also consisieatly advocated thai ihe Pact and NATO firvl eliminate lhe "asymmetries" in forces, then negotiate further reductions Other themes of lhc Warsaw Pact regarding negotiated reductions include:
should be by units.
Equipment affected should be destroyed or stored on national territory.
Reductions of forces must be subjectenficanoa."
. In additionoe proposals, of course, lhe Warsaw Pact states have been negotiating in Vienna wiih representatives of allATO slates since7 toandate for new conventional arms controlfar called Conventional Stabilitywill haveone of application
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"Europe fiom lhe Atlantic to theee inset onor an outline of the various forums ni which arms control has recently been discussed.
Wc judge lhal the Soviets and Iheir alliesumber of interrelated military, political, andreasons to engage the West in conventional arms control. Their primary military objectives are probably: to improve lhe correlation of forces and lo reduce what Ihey perceive as NATO's capability tourprise aiuck; and io impede NATO's force modem rat km plans and lo prevent or impede NATO's deploymenl of advanced tcc.inolofiyIn the Soviel view, success in achieving ihese objective* would significantly reduce lhe threat from NATO and thereby reduce lhe urgency on ihe pari of ihe Soviet Union to match or beiler NATO's high-lecfinology modernisation programs. This, in nun. *ould make il politically easier to allocate economic resources within the Soviet Union from the defense secior to lhc civilian secic* to carry oul ptrtttroyke Other related objectives arc:
To reduce NATO's capability for mobilization and reinforcement wiih particular emphasis on reducing ihc abilily of lhe West German Bundeswchr to mobilize forces.
To attain,ignificant reduction of US forces in Europe, and cast doubts on ihc US nuclear umbrella
To reduce and, ultimately, to eliminate tactical nucleario Europe.
The Warsaw Pactenuine concern about NATO's military prowess, appraises lhc miliiarydifferently from lhe West, and fears NATO's
Other Arms Control Forums
Mutual aad Balanced Force Reductions (MBFR) Negotiations: The Warsaw Pact states and most NATOnotbeen meeting in Vienna3 to discuss mutual reductions of ground and air forcesone that encompasses East Cermany, Poland, and Czechoslovakia; and West Germany, theBelgium, and Luxembourg. The talks have been moribund for years and should end when (or soon after) the Conventional Stability Talks begin.
The Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europehis conference, which includes the United States. Canada, and alt European states exceptnriginally met in Helsinki and issued the Helsinki Final Acthe conference dealside range of European security, economic, scientific, and hw manitanan issues, bul isisarmament forum because reduction of forces isopic. There have been several fotlowup meetings sinceincluding the one in Vienna thai began in6 and is currently running (as of. Agreements must be byand are politically but not legally binding.
The Conference on Confidence-and Security-Building Measures and Disarmament in Europehe sametates met from1 to6 to negotiate the Stockholmackage of corifidcncc-buildingincluding mandatory advance notification of
certain military exercises, mandatory invitation of observers to certain exercises, and provisionsimited number of on-site challenge inspections. The zone of application is "Europe from the Atlantic to theDE was held under the auspices of ihe Conference on Security andin Europeecond phase ofCDE IB by lhebegin at the same time and in the same city as the Conventional Stability Talks.
Conference on Disarmamenthis conference is sponsored by the United Nations, andN members participate in meetings that are held alternately in New York and Geneva. Il deals with chemical and biological weapons, space issues, and many other issues. The United States and USSR hold bilateral talks on chemical weapons "on the margin'and "under the auspices" of the CD.
Nuclear and Space Talks(NSTM The "umbrella" under which the United States and USSRon Intermediate-range nuclear forcesnd continue io negotiate on strategic nuclear forcesnd defense and space-related issuesl This conference has met in Geneva5 and is noteworthy, of course, for the successful conclusion of the INF Treaty.
to continue to produce advanced technology nonnuclear weapons and lo mobilize and reinforce military forces. The Sovicis are particularlyaboul NATO's aircraft, which (hey consisicnl-ly rate as superior lo corresponding Sovicl aircraft. Soviet planners view thc improvements NATO has made tn ils air forces a* threatening their goal of achieving ahcmicala conventional war in Europe. In addiiion. the Soviets
have repeatedly expressed concern about NATO's overall naval capability. Therearallel trend in Sovicl assessments to attribute greater eflcciiveness ihan NATO docs itself io most NATO conventional weapons, especially antitank guided missiles (ATGMs) and aiiack helicopters.
The Sovicls have also frequently discussed Ihc threal posed by-capons and often claim that these weapons' destructive power approaches Ihat of low yield nuclear weapons For example, the Soviets refer in particular to "vacuumnd ihey often discuss Ihc dancers of precision location strikelhe US lermacuum bombucl-air explosive
NATO's miliiaryhus, it nowustained Warsaw Pact theater offensive operation against NATO in Central Europe would probably involve four fronts instead of Ihree fronts in the first strategic
*^Thc Soviets associate US advanced technoloey conventional weapon systems with NATO's Follow-on Forces Attack (FOFA)They recognize the threat such weapons pose to ihc Pact's ability lo reinforce.
Thc Sovietsave concerns about bow quickly NATO, especially lhe West Germans, can mobilize forces and how quickly thc United Slates can tend reinforcements lo Europe.^
Fconiiniic Considerations When Gorbachev came to power, he inherited abackward economy thai hadecade of slowing growth cbaractenzed by industrial boitlenecks, labor and energy shot laces, and declining efficiency of Investment. Recognizing thc urgency of thc situation, hcold strategy of peeesiroyka and industrial moderniution designed to deal with many of tbcajor part of this strategy has involved an effort lo boost productivity through lhe large-wale replacement of capital stock in civilianstrategy that so far has beenIndeed, despite stepped-up investment in the civilian sector of (be economy, tbc Soviet economic situation over the past three years has failedmprove, ai the hoped (or gams in produciivtiy have not materialized.
The Pact's perception, probablyorst-case scenario, of how quickly NATO can mobilize and its perceptions of improved defense capabilities have led the Pacthange iu minute of Ihc site of forces required io ensnie Pad successonventional war. (Tbe annci elaborates on Soviet perceptions of
From Ihc beginning. Gorbachev's efforts to refurbish the country's industrial base have held the poieniial for heated competition with defense for many of the resources involved in weapons production Most ofthe machinery neededrbache*'s rnoderniration proeram is manufactured by the machine-buildingindustrial secior also responsible for thc production of military hardware. Moreover, many of thc inputs used in the defense production, such as microelectronics and high-qualiiy machinery, arc vital to tbe modernization progiam Al least iailially. however, the defense sector was insulalcd fromcutbacks, and thc leadership apparently hoped that it could achieve economic improvements without affecting weapons development and production
As lbc economy has continued to stumble, however, thc Soviet leadership has stepped up its pressure on the defense industries to provide additional resources for its civilian program. In particular, it hasits demands that tbc defense sector assume gi eater responsibility for producing civilian goods. For example, during an7 Central Committee conference. Premier Ryzhkov announced Ihat the defense industries must increase deliveries ofto the food-processing sector by "four-fold to nine-foldew months later, thc Ministry of Machine Building for light and Food Industry and Household Appliances was disbanded and most oflants resubordinatcd lo the defense industries. Subsequently. Premier Ryzhkov ordered Ihe defense industries to start newly acquired civil plants with iheir best people snd lo give tbe production of food-processingigher priority, wartime thai anyone who failed lo gel with the program "isiglthough Ihesc steps have noi had any discernible impact on major weapons programs so far, if ihe leadership follows through on its demands, il wiil almost certainly lead to stretching oul orof some future weapons programs.1
To buttress the justification foi reallocating resources, Gorbachev and olher Soviel officials have called for "new thinking" in thc formulation of national security policy They have crnphasircd three themes
Thr economic dimension of notional security.leaders have linked an improved economy to thc expansion of lhe USSR's influence, and they have contended that ihc challenge posed by (he arms race to thc USSR's superpower status is as muchit it ts iniiiury. They aad the military leadership agree that significant improvements in ihc high-technology sector of the economy arclo compete wiih lhe West in lhe production of advanced weaponry.
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"Reasonablesufficiency."Some civilian reformers have defined (his concept ai having lhe necessaiy forces to deter aggression and indicated that the Soviets already have sufficient power io do so. The Parly Congress in6 endorsedcall to "restrict military power within ihc bounds of reasonable
The Soviets recognize thai they cannoi depend on reaching major conventional arms control agreements in ihe near future. However, wc judge thai Gorbachev has raised the arms control process to tbc forcfroni of thc USSR's national security agenda in an effort lo reduce both external and internal pressures lo spend more onleast until hc can reap the productivity gains he hopes to achieve from hismodern Nation program. Wiih lhe vasl majority of Soviet defense spending devoted io the continued modernization of conventional forces, anywith NATO that would allow lhe Sovietseduce ihcsc expenditures could make additionalavailable for the civilian economy. By actively engaging NATO in thc arms control process, lhe Soviet leadership clearly hopesndercut support in the Wesi for NATO's conventional and lacticalweapons modernization programs, in reducing ihr threat from NATO, and thereby reducing theto match or better NATO's high-technologythe Soviets thereby creaie an environment that would facilitate cuts in defense spending.
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Political Coieidcra (ions
In lhc broadest sense, Ihc Sovicl Union's "disarma-meni campaign" concerning ccnvcniioaat forces is pari ofenchant for sweepingproposal* to dcmonjlraie lhe "new thinking" in Soviet foreign and domestic policy. The publicarc intended lo appeal to public opinion al home and abroadeneralized way. whileoscow's overall arms control posture and enhancing us imagerusiworthy and rational player in ihe international arena.
Initially, ihe Sokl and Pact proposal* on conveeiion-al forces were also reactions to criticisms ofsweeping proposal of6 io rid lhe world of nuclear weapons. Many Westspokesmen from leftist polilicalout critically Ihitorld tsilboui nuclear weapons lhe Warsaw Pact's conventional forces would become relatively more threatening and dangerous.ihen quickly introduced his proposal for mutual and large cuts in NATO and Warsaw Pactroposal formally "blessed'* by other Pact leaders in Budapest ineportingorc-ovci. suggested lhat lhc Soviet-Warsaw Pactcalculated appeal across the polilical speciram in NATO (and neutral countries) io allay fearsonventional war in Europe would be more likely if the United Slates and USSR conclude an agreement on strategic arms
The Pact's willingness to discuss conventional forces reductions is also characteristic of the moreand flexible approach Moscow has adopted over the past two yean. Thus, in sharp contrast to hispredecessors, Gorbachev has tried to influence West European governments and public opinion by using carrots more than slicks. For example, while lhe Soviets have noi abandoned lies to leftist opposition parlies, ibey have built bridges to pro-NATO and pro-nuclear conservatives such as British PrimeThatcher and West German Chancellor Koht and arc now working on doing thc same wiih French President Mitterrand. The SovieU also appear to recognize ihai creating doubts aboul tbe US cotrnru'.-meni to Western Europe's defense could lead lo efforts lo strengthen both NATO's European pillar and European ties lo the Uniied States. For example.
one of Moscow's concerns following ihc6 US-SovkI summit meeting at Reykjavik was thai it could trigger latent Wesi European fearsurope decoupled from Ihc US nuclear deterrent' -which in lurn could spur etTorls by NATO to upgrade ils conventional and tactical nuclear forces.
This more active, notKocfrontattonal engagement ol Western Europe represents at oneajoi tactical sbifl to obtain long-term Soviel goals in the region. Ai ihe same lime. Moscow is stronglyio see tbe arms control process produce tangible results Thus, in the nuclear arms control held, lhe present Soviet leadership sought and madecompromises in its negotiations wuh the Untied Stales io conclude arms agreements. For example. Moscow's acceptance of on-site inspections In the 1STkey lo us accepiabiliiy lo the United Stales anda major reversal of previous Sovicl policy on verifieaiion procedures lliai dales back to
In ibe conventional arms control process, wc expect thai for lhe short term (two years) the Pact states will continue iheir elTorli lo lake advantage of theamong the Western Allies. The Warsaw Pact, however, will desire thai NATO nor be so divided as lo preclude negotiating and perhapsutually beneficial arms oontrol agreement.
Over the longerthere is no progress toward reaching agreement within iwoSoviels and their allies mightore propagandisoc approach designed to cause dissension within NATO and especially lo create European suspicion of ihe Uniied Slates. Moscow would seek to play onWest European misgivings aboul Washington'son such issues as SDI. ABM. SALT II. and short-range nuclear-capable force* (SNF)to create the impression among Europeans lhat thc United States is an unreliable, or perhapsangerous, partner.
The major Soviet polilical consideration behind Sovicl conventional arms control initiatives is lhe reduction of European electoral and political support for
increased defense spending io support NATO'sprogram. Moscow probjbly hopesconventional arms conirol campaign, alongdomestic pressures, will slow suchcomplicate Alliance decisionmaking, andEuropean suspicions that the United Slatesproperly understand or lake fully intoeconomic conditions and domesticEuropean
publics' perceptionoviet threat tohas diminished considerably in recentthe same lime, European NATO
govcrnmcntsnavc generally been unable to fund substantial increases ia defense spending encouraged by the Uniied States.
Finally, Moscow also sees the arms control process as reinforcing its diplomatic efforts to engage the major West European slates in polilical dialogue bothandand in ihe processlhe Uniied Siaics and thereby developing greater leverage, through US Allies, on US policies toward the Soviet Union. In this res]>ect. thc Soviets have already achieved some
Despite lhe Warsaw Pact's public relationscalls for conventional forces rcduciJons talksas soon as
lhal Ihe Pact was still thrashing out its position^ Jseee believe thai internal differences within the USSR and some differences between thc Soviets and iheir allies have limited thebility tocmprehensivearms control negotiating strategy.
The extensive debate going on wiihin lhe USSR on the question of "reasonable suffiaeiKy" suggests ihai there are divergent, slrongly held views aboul lhe future sire and rale of modernization of the Soviet armed forces Thc lack of consensus may befor the delay in tne Sotiei decision mating pioccss
regarding the detailsonventional arms conirolregarding what and how much the USSR should offer to "iradc"btain Western reductions. The differing argumenls being made by Gorbachev's civilian advisers and the miliiary suggest that tbe subject is being negotiated in the context of sellinc thc parameters for Ihe nexi five-year plan.'
We believe lhe Soviet military may have somewith ike political leadership over possible tactics lo be employed concerning conventional arms conirol, bul thcIhe topnor oppose arms control per se. Thc miliiary knows lhat Gorbachev's overall policies are motivatedby lhc desire to help preserve and advance Ihe USSR's power and to improve its positionlobal superpower. The miliiarytrong supporter and poteniial primary beneficiary of ihese overall goals.
Wc believe Ihc miliury has outlined al least iu "bottom line" on armsdiminish the sianding and reserve canahilitics of both US and West German forces, particularly tactical strike airciaft. and to slow NATO modcrnixaiion. Negotiatedthai include reciprocal Western obligations arc far preferable to unilateral reductions We believe lhe polilical leadership will accede to most of ihesaggf about the details of arms control, but ultimately thc outcome of any debates will be determined by lhe policy agenda and polilical power of the party leadership.
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The Warsaw I'aci Negotiating Position
are connected to the CSCE fallow-on meeting, which deals in part with human rights, and the Soviets have only reluctantly mode concessions on human rights issues.
The Pact's cellata exchange andbefore formal negotiations begin, perhaps, inelaying tactic. Given the record of MBFR. the complexity of exchanging dala on forces from the Atlantic to the Urals, and the time required to verify the data, ihe Pact has calledrocess lhat it almost guaranteed toong time and perhaps preemptdiscussion ofroposals.
The Pact's most recent public "call"forarms control. The Warsaw meeting in8 of Ihe Political Consultativerehashed earlier Warsaw Pact proposals without elaboration.
Hungarian statements, including one by Premier and party leader Gross in lateoting that conventional arms control It amcomplex issue" ihai has "not been clearlyso far..
A plethora of Warsaw Pan meetings in late October, including another meeting af theliiinrmaincni Commission.
Pact wat still working on its position as ofNovem-
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Vienna negotiating position, it builds eonsttiently
Theegotiating record at lhelhe Budapest Appeal with very specific descrip-
talks" in Vienna shoeing lhe Pactof cutbacks of "comparable divisions" and
unlit recenily. io make any concessions onartillery pieces, and aircraft within three
portani issues and reluctant to "give" ontones and in three phases It includes. In
ones This record reflects in partthird, or outer some,ertain part" of the
ould alsoact desireof ihe United States, and ihe naval forces
to expedite jotmat negotiations One reasonthe Atlantic andPad's approach is ihai the mandate lalks
Gorbachev, moreover, appears lotrongin (be leadership lo maneuver on foreign policy issues and arms control. Although (here appeare some icservaiions about hiv policies, he has repeatedly dcmonsiiaied his ability toonsensus to support major foreign policy initiatives, such as (be INF aft cement and the Soviet withdrawal from AfEhanislan. Over the course of his ihree years as party leader, suppori for bis foreign policy appeais lo have increased in the leadership as il has begun to produce results. Gorbachev's ability to set ihc foreign policy agenda has been strengthened by recentchanges that nut his allies Shevarnadrc and Politburo and Secretariat member Yakovlev in charge of ihese issues. Mosi members of lhe leadership would appear lo use (heir poliiical capital lo light bailies on domesticwhich most of ihem arc more directly concerned. If Gorbachev is willing to push hard, he could probably win approvalold, but wdl conceived, arms control policy.
The Easi Europeansifferent set offor lhe Soviet leadership. Although our evidence is very scanty, il seems io suggest ihat the East Europeans would like to "benefit" from convent ion si arms conirol in the sense thai ihey too would either likeeduce Ihcir forces or al leasi noi compensate Tor any Soviet reductions. Regarding Soviet forces, the Easi Europeans do noiommon posilion on conventional arms control, and thc Sovieu therefore musi rcs|Hind io different sets of Interests. To provide further aggravation, Romanian leaderlay his highly idiosyncratic rote and threatencd lo block all progress in Vienna unless his views arc accepted. The Soviets and other Eastesult, occasionally refer to Ihc "Warsaw Pact Six plu>nd finally, ihe Special Commissionsarmarncnt established by tbc Pact apparently has been unable lo formulateasic policy on whichormulate proposals.
We believe, moreover, lhal. while the Soviets aadallies appear lo have resolved some of the fundamental issues regarding ihe negniiahons. ihey have ydgree on many important details of how any reductions oo the Pact side should be apportioned Fo* example, if the Soviet* withdraw forcestem Europe. Iiom which countries should the
Soviets withdraw and how much of Ihc Groups of Forces should be withdrawn? Again, the evidence is scanty, but we surmise thai Hungarian leadenand Polish leaders would suppori at least partial withdrawals. Czechoslovak leaders are likely divided on thc questionoviet withdrawal. East German leaders probably wouldartial withdrawal of Soviet forces from East Germany (which now compriseank and motorized rifleut wouldajor withdrawal.
There it no doubt that control over lbc substance of Pact policy in international negotiations will remain firmly in Soviel hands The Soviets, however, may find it hard to ignore demands from some of lhe East Europeans tbat they participateossiblescheme. The USSR probably will also pay attention lo possible warnings from other Eastthat stability in their countries could be alTcct-ed by major Soviet withdrawals. The bottom line, then it lhal Moscow may find il more difficult (han in (be past to manage iu alliance, and intra Wanaw Pact differences may complicic Ihe formulation of Puci positions.
WarW* Pad Option*
Over ihe long term, we believe Ihe Soviets and iheir allies prefer lo negotiate with NATO to achieve mutual reductions of conventional forces. Militarily, ii makes more sense to trade reductions of forces, therebyalance in lhe correlation of forces However, the Pact probably realizes ihat ncgotiaiiag an agreement with NATO (hat ts accept* able io them could lakemight not even be possible. In thc meanlimc, the Sovieis fear that NATO could continue lo modernize its forces, which would compel the Soviets either io match thatorerious shift in the correlation of forces Such an arms race would, of course, almost certainly derail Gorbachev's attempts lo rcslorc the Soviet economyigh-investment strategy.
In (he short term (iwoe believe lhe Warsaw Pad willlralcey aimed al reducing (heerception ot (hc Soviel threat in thc eipecta-don that ihis course will make il difficult for NATO governments to maintain or increase defenseThe Pact will engage NATO in ihc Conventional Stability Talks and probably will introduce sweeping proposals for asymmetric reductions, and perhaps lake unilateral initiatives designed for poliiical effed, bui having limited impact on overall Warsaw Pact miliiary capabilities. By emphasizing the arms control process they will attempt lo capture the publichigh ground while not allowing NATO lothose advantages that the Soviets and most Pad allies currently perceive.
We prod id ihat, when formal negotiations concerning conventional forces in tbche-Urats rone begin, the Warsaw Paci will quicklyormal version of iu public diplomacymight evenrafl treaty very early in lhe negotiations. (The Pact dsd rust that in the negotiatiocs on Mutual and Balanced forcet will probably insistiscussion of data regardingbetween the two sides' forces and probably suggestworking group on
The Warsaw Pad stales will mot accept tbe current NATOhich in effect calls on lhe Padake gigantic cuts in tanks and attillery inor minor cuts on the NATO side so lhal ihere is parity in these weapon systems. (This would mean the Pad would have to withdraw or destroy0 tanks while NATO would withdraw or destroyhey will admit iheyumericalin certain items of equipment, bui will not accept at face value the NATO view of lhehey will continue to insist thai ihere is an overall "parity" between NATO and Pad forces and ihat NATO has numerical superiority over thc Pact in Certain kerns of equipment.
Western publics would most likely support ihcgovernments' rejection ofaneuver. The Pad, therefore, may fairly quickly suggest anin that (be Pad might propose taking greater reductions lhan NATO in similar uniis of account (say, divisions) and/or propose trading greater reductions in one item of equipment for NATO's reducing another ilem, such as tanks for aircraft. Gorbachev himself has strongly impliedumber of statements, beginning wiih his7 address in Czechoslovakia, lhal this would be the Pact's position
More recently, in what isreview of (his type of proposal, senior Soviel officials have claimed thc USSR wouldubstantial force from Eastern Europe under an agreement wiih NATO in which NATO also withdrew some forces Soviet General Chcrvov recently asserted that Pad leaders have approved plansartial Soviet withdrawal from Crechoilovakia. Hungary, and East Germany as part of an agreement with NATO. Chcrvov, in elTccl. wasomment Defense Minister Yazov made io Secretary or Defense Carlucci. Yazov said lhe Pad hadoviet withdrawal0 personnel from Central Europe in return for aNATO response in southern Europe
The military impact on ihe Warsaw Pact if an asymmetrical proposal were accepted andwould vary depending on how ibe Padit. Variables would include:
Whether the Soviets look all thc reductions or whether one or mote East European slates also reduced forces.
Wbdher ihc Soviets withdrew forces from Eas(ern Europe, reduced forces in ihc USSR, or did some of both.
Whcilicr withdrawn Soviet forces were simply moved or disbanded.
equipment were destroyed or stored Thc greatesi military impact would occur if (be Soviets look all the reductions by withdrawing forces from Central Euiope. disbanding the units, andtlie cquipme.il.
Paci realizes ihat NATO would rcjcci any proposal calling for neatly equalihai
In general, withdrawals/reductions of Soviel forces from lhe entire Allanlic-lo-Urais regionodes!fewer than,ot seriously affect long-term Pact miliuryunless lhc Pact took lhc unlikely slep ofmodern equipment Modest withdrawals,mean lhal il would ukeew days longer than now is the case for the Warsaw Pact lo mobilize, retrain, and reintroduce forces Io lhc forward area.
The Soviets would view the miliury impacl on NATO ofegotiated agreement as being dependeni
ihe Uniied Suies withdrew forces from Europe, and whether the United States withdrew equipment as well, and especially if this withdrawal included tactical nuclear weapons and dual-capable
extent to which thc Bundeswehr participated in reductions and how the Bundeswehr tookis. by "thinning out" or by calling anus (Wc believe the Soviets are well aware West Germany wants to participate in any NATO reduction! forand polilical reasons and would no! permit any deal in which the Bundeswehr "gel* off cheap.*')
We judge Ihc Soviets and iheir allies would be willing io make an asymmetrical offer and. upon agreement with NATO, implement it. They presumably assume Ihai ihe impact on Western force modcrntraiion would outweiRh what lhe Pact mighi viewhort-lerm miliiary disadvantage in some categories. Were Ihe Pad stales to offer to trade "tanks fore assume Ihey would defend their proposal by reversing Western arguments about the difficulty of monitoring aircrsfi reductions and about how aircraft can be moved bat quickly reintroduced. They would point out:
Aircraft have plated an integral role in surprise attacks.
Il would be Ihe Paci stales lhal would have lo worry aboul monitoring reductions and about the rcintro-duction of Die aircraft
Thus. Western arguments should lead the Wcsi to acceptroposal, which NATO itself once offered
Unilateral So<irl Withdrawal Previous Soviet unilateral withdrawals have mostly been for public diplomacy, as inroop withdrawal by Brezhnev. in which concurrent unit expansions actually resulted in overall Intrrasts in Soviet forces. Bul since thc Warsaw Pact issued thc Budapest Appeal inhere have been numerous reports and rumors that tbc Soviets would unilaterally withdraw forces from Eastern Europe. These reports and rumorsduring every trip by Gorbachev to an Easi European capital and several limes when thereS-Sovici sum mil.
"^the Soviets have seriouslywithdrawing some or all of their Southern Group of Forces fSGF) from Hungary. In response lo receni articles in lhe Western mediaossibleSoviet drawdown in Hungary, the Sovietsruled cutove. Some Sovietespecially lopnilateral gesture is unacceptable. Moieover. Ihe Warsaw Paci Polilical Consultative Committee session ended onuly without mention of unilateral Soviet withdrawals from Eastern Europe or any other unilateral Warsaw Pact moves
issue was contemplated and much groundwork was laid, possibly including an agreement in principle between Moscow and Budapest. Moreover, Huncar-ian officials have indicated publicly thai they are cuniinuing to discuss wiih Moscow the timingeduction of Soviet forces The evidence is mixed as io whether the Soviets would opt lo make the reduction unilaterally, but any step contingentestern response would differ little from previous Soviet offers and would be difficult for Moscow- to portrayold new initiative
If ihe Soviets decide lo reduce ihcir forces in Eastern Europe unilaterally, wc judge ihey wouldove thai would secure maximum political imp-it in ihe Wesi without unduly disrupting Soviet military capabilities. They wouldithdrawalsufficientlyup lo iworetain same flexibility in ihc event of changingand would expect to spread iheirgains over Ihc entire period Unilateral wiih-drawal of allarge pan of tbe Southern Group of Forces from Hungary would best satisfy IheseAlternative unilateral gestures frequently mentioned by thc Fast since the Warsaw Pact's6 Budapesttoken withdrawalhinning of Soviet foices throughout Easternlack the dramatic appeal of removing allarge part of thc Southern Group of Foices.
Senior Soviet military officers would be likely initially lo resist any withdrawal on ihe grounds thai ii would reduce thcii ability to conduct operations against NATO, and lonilateral tiep. lf_L
^however, lhe wilhdrawn units were to be relocated to thc USSR and downgraded, ihe military leadership would be hard pressed lo argue against thc move because Ihere would be no Overall reduction in forces.
Thc military's principal objectionone for which they would probably find some support within ihc poliucalbehe unilateralof lhe withdrawal. Defense Minister Yazov, Chief of ihe Genera) Siatf Akhromeyev. and oihci senior officers have consistently opposed unilateral reductions. Akhromeyev publicly denied their utility during his recent visii lo Washington These miliiary leaders would probably be joined in Ibeir arguments by lhose Politburo members who in lhe past have expressed reservaiKins about Gorbachev's approach. They would cite the risk ili,il any unilateral move sets
a dangerous military and political precedent. Bui Gorbacheviwo most powerful Politburo critics,Chebrikov and Yegor Ligacbev, apparentlya sciious setback at the party plenum in8 when Iheir responsibilities were shifted away from Ihe KGB and ideology, respectively, and Ihey were moved io oew commissions on legal reform and agriculture. In lhe near term, therefore, Gorbachev remainsowerful posilion to carry through with arms reductions be believes would be prudent.and his supporters would maketo critics Ihat unilateral reductions have the advantage of notegotiated timetable or being subject to verification Some miliiary leaders might alio be swayed by the prospectnilateral withdrawal could place enough pressure on Weslern governments io bring about some reductions in NATO forces or io forestall planned NATO
Editrr* Lmiopcz Tht Klik af Inuabiliiy. The Sovieis would probably anticipate thai lhe most negative potential consequencenilaicial withdrawal from any Easi European stale would be thc possibility for unrcsl. Soviel forces stationed in Eastern Europe arc not configured or employed as occupation forces and are trainee, equipped, and organized to conductoperations againsi NATO. However, they help keep popular pressures for change in check byMoscow's willingness lo use force to maintain Com nm mil regimes iunilateralfrom Hungary, where the Soviet miliury presence is associated historically with violent repression, might be inicrptctcd by opposition elements and leaders alikeign thai Moscow intended io delegate more of the responsibility for maintaining order to Ihe local Communist regimes. Whilereformers within party leaderships tochange, ibe Soviets may be concernedithdrawal could encourage demands for changes ihat go beyond permissible bounds.
evaluation of these risks might affect the Scwiets' timing (or announcing andithdrawal, but the Soviets probably would calculate that Eastern Europe conk) be insulated (ram them if thc withdrawal were carefully designed:
lengthy withdrawal timetable would give Ihet opportunity to limil instability in Eastern Europe. Moscow would gain immediatecredit lor withdrawing the SGF, but the actual
. removal of lorces would be gradual and could be adapted lo changing events in the region
Soviet and East European leaders could agree in advance on measures to blunt the impactithdrawal announcement on East Europeanand coordinate their response* to possibleunrest. Their confidence in local security forces should have been enhanced byI Polish implementation of mania) law.
Rcfoi mers and dissidents elsewhere in thc bloc might temper their demands if Grosr successfully contained "inappropriate enthusiasm" in Hungary.
la thc end. thc Soviet* probably -ould view ihc continued presence of their forces elsewhere in Eastern Europe a* an effective dclcrreni lo any fcrmeni possibly sparkedithdrawal from Hungary.
Western Europe- Implications for the NATO Alliance- Hrom the Soviet perspective, the major benefit of unilaterally removing thc SGF, (orwould be lhe positive reaction from Westleader* and publics. At tbe very least, Moscow would dramatically reinforce its other efiort* tothe Sonet Unioneaceful surscrpower. West European leaders wouldnilateral withdrawal of Soviet forcesungaryictory for Ihe Alliance's strategy of holding oui for asymmetrical forceut they would differ on how bestespond publicly and in future conventional arm* control negotiations They would also recognize that Gorbachev had seized the public relations initiative. Some would be likelyear thatramatic Sovicl gesture could strengthen calls in Ibeithdrawal of at least some US forces fiom Europe
On balance, (hen, we judge lhe Soviets could garner significant political gains in Western Europe alrisk* by unilaterally removing some of Iheir forces from Eastern Europe, especially all from Hungary. The evidence on Soviet liming andis insuthcient to predict with confidence when andithdrawal announcement mighl be made. Gorbachev might now delay unlil formal talks begin on reductions of conventional forces or unlil lhc new US administration is in place. On Ihe other hand, considerable groundwork apparently has been laid, and Gorbachev, whose liming in making foreign policy gcslures has someiimcs been starlling. might be prepared to unveil the plan sooner.
A So>id Snorl-Range Nuclear Force Witbdraoal Given tbc West Germans" concern aboul short-range nuclear-capable forces (SNFV it is possible lhal the Soviel* and their allies mightesture by unilaterally withdrawing some short-range ballistic missile(SK HM) launchers from Eastern Europe lhc actual number probably would be small and mighl consist, for example, of lhe withdrawal of one of lhclauncltcr, front-level Scud missile brigades located in East Germany. The offer could involveithdia<-al ofr il might be linkedore general conventional arms proposal:
ihc Allantic-to-lhe-Urals region, ihc Pact has fieldedcud SRBM launchers andRBM launchers, while NATO has lessotal SRBM launchers located in the region. In Casiern Europe alone, lite Pact maintainscud andaunchers1
The Pact's primary objectives inesture of this type wooVI include:
improve Soviet- West German relation*..
In mMiXmtr,n4 Ikeite PMl lumui'i O'ti
."li IMR. until Inn-lint in the AlUniiet** mnuln/iMttK ut yvailsbV foi ill Pre SKBMFitOt> luuiKhrn
To convince West Germany (oat leastcommitment to accept fielding of new SNF weapons, as advocated by the United States and the United Kingdom, tcmaiively scheduled for thc.
although Paris would take into account thc action's impact on ibe West German domestic scene as ii formulated its response. The smaller Allies would, for the most part, reaci favorablynilateral Sovici action on SNF. Most would refrain from commenting, however, until tbey had an opportunity io discuss thc technical aspects of thc proposal with tbc larger Allies.
To suppori the Cast German and Czechoslovak desireuclear-free zone along the innerborder.
To create major dissension within NATO, especially lo sow discord between the United States and West Germany and toolitical wedge between the West Germans and the French.
We judge it unlikely that the Sovicls would actually destroy any SRBMs unilaterally; rather, we believe
thai ihey probably would restation Ihem in thc USSR.
From Ihcre the weapons would be unableeach
NATO targets in Central Europe.risis, lhe SRBM launchers could be relumed to Eastern Europe. Thus, there would be minimal change in ihc balance of forces, bui the Soviets could argue ihat iheyresponding toest
The West Germans would welcome any Sovielreduction of Pact SNF missile systems,if the reductions were substantial (more lhanercenti and Ihe weapons were destroyed rather lhan simply withdrawn. Although we judge boihreductions and destruction of weapons as unlikely, if they did occur. Boon probably wouldOliow-on to thc lance SRBM. The Uniled Kingdom would be more reserved, withthat lhe West carefully analyze the East's actions belore responding The United Kingdom would also insist that, in any case, thc West musl preserve the right lo modernize its SNF forces. France would be ihc most cautious of the larger European Allies.
Th. MM o(orninl -onlei decate in Btrl on wtirihcr tbe Sovieu withdrew only SRBM bunch uniia. o<
hcli irlWmjux suroon WW*
We believe, however,oviet unilateral SRBM withdrawal would not mean thai tbe Paci wasits posilion thai dual-capable SNF delivery systems (as opposed to warheads orhould be discussed and negotiated within lhe context of conventional force negotiations. In addition, thewill remain unwilling lo negotiate on the basis of the Western definition ofincludes only artillery. FROGs, andthc expense of their definitions of "tactical" and "operational-iacti-eal" nuclear systems that abo include aircraft. Wc judge, moreover, lhal. even in the event of an SRBM unilateral gesture, the Soviets would remain unwilling io limit any subsequent SNF negotiations solelyi-etission of SRBMs.
Although, from the Sovieis" respective, thereare incentivesithdraw unilaterallyof their SRBM force from Eastern Europe,the likelihood ofove lo be tow forof this Estimate. An excellent opportunitySoviclstageove appeared wiihofRBMs from EasiSS-2J. which was to replace the Scud until itby lhe INF Treaty, had been fielded wiiharmy in Easi Germany. The October visitby Kohl provided an ideal opportunityio lanouisce ihat no replacement forwould be fielded. Thc Soviets, however,ihe United Slates lhal ground-basednoi covered by INF provisions willacilities in East Germany beginning
unit there is convening back to the Scud. Thus.Thr
apparently have decided lo restore Ihc Scud force lo lhc level thai existed before tbc introduction
of Ike SS-2J:
Thc SKBM's role in conventional strike operations ha* grown considerably, andow regarded by the Sovietsey ingredient in the success of iheir conventional fire-support planning against NATO. Because of ihis.oviel operationalthe number of SRBM weapons now stationed in lias tern Europe is insufficient to carry out all assigned tasksimely and effective fashion.
A family of improved conventional munitionhas been developed, and more arc under development, for Soviet SRBM systems to improve their performance in conventional strikes. Coupled with ongoing programs to increase the accuracy of SR BMs, such as lhe Scud, lhc Soviets areonsiderable investment in these systems lo improve (heir capabilities in carrying out conventional attack operations.
Many targets assigned to the SRBM force must be attacked al lhe outset of hostilities in order toigh probability of success in destroying them These include highly mobile targets andhat would field-deploy early in any conflict. Thus, ihc Soviets could not be certain thai any SRBM systems withdrawn lo lhc USSR could be brought forward quickly enough lo ensure their availabiUiy for use al the sun of combaL
SRBMs arc viewed by the Soviets as imporunt weapons in offsetting NATO's tactical strikeadvantage. They would be employed againsi NATO airfields and air defense systems, and thus would be crucial in the battle for air supremacy. Thc air supremacy campaign would be conducted earlyact-NATO war. and SRBMs would have to Ik available immediately lo participate In operolic Soviets might link any SNF drawn-downeciprocal NATO reduciion in ils tuciicjl strike aviation.
act (iround Forces Restructuring
Wc bclvcve ihc Soviets have been considering for several years an alternative organization for thcit
ground forces lhal, if adoptedarge-scale basis, would change ill complexion beyond anyattempted since World War II. Allhough no Eastern source hasossible forceto an arms control move, such an association could be made as (he negotiations proceed. There is not enough information currcnlly available lo determine whether the Soviel* have made the decision lo alter fundamentally the structure of their ground forces We also have no information on thc ultimate design and scope of any intended alterations, or Ihc timing of iheir implcmentation Tbe Soviets may. as they have indicated, continue to experiment with alternative organizational concepts before decidingreferred siructurc. Under any circiiinstances, wc believe that any sizable restructuring plan, once decided on, would proceed gradually and require several years to corn-pleie in thc forward area. Nevertheless, because there have been increasing indications since thchat the Soviets arc experimenting with new ground force unit organi rat ions, we judge ibe futureof Sovicl ground forces toistorical perspective of restructuring, see inset)
Over tbe past two yean, lhc Soviets have created combined-arms battalions in motorized rifleby adding one unk company to lhe existing three motorized rifle companies. This configuration has been detected thus far in two moiorized rifle divisions and two tank divisions in tlte Group of Soviet Forces, Geimany (GSFG) and appears to be becoming the standard for Soviet forces in East Germany and perhaps the forward area. The creation of Ihese battalions represents another step ia lhc Soviets' utilization of combined-arms concepts lo structure their forces more effectively for conventional combat operations against NATO. We cannot yet confidently assess whether battalion restructuring is carrying lhc Soviet ground forces toward an expanded division-regimentivision-brigade organizatron. ora first slcp toward the eventual emergenceorps brigade lormation. In any case, expandedwould create substantially larger maneuverin armor holding*.
1 Top Scorer-
Reorganization ana"istorical Perspective
Soviet force structure is constantly being modified in order to assimilate new weapons and respond to the ever-changing demands of thebattlefieldhese changes have tended to be incremental. The vast she of the Soviel Army also precludes the concurrentof structural changes on aforcewide basis. On two occasions since World War II. however, the Soviets have launched forcewide re-Organizations of their ground forces units becauseeassessment of their warfighting doctrine and their corresponding military requirements. Both Involved major force reductions.
The first forcewide reorganization occurredfollowing the war when the mobileaf the Soviettank andconverted to divisions. In making the transitionartime to afooting, the Soviets also demobilized several million men and disbanded numerous units.
The second reorganization occurred in thefter Khrushchev came to power, andesult of his belief that the next war would inevitably be nuclear. Khrushchev reorganized and reduced the size of the Soviet ground forces byillion men in an attempt to make them more survtvable and capable of offensiveon the nuclear battlefield. The restructured tank and motorized rifle divisions were heavier in armor-but lighter in infantry and artillery, since they were designed to operateuclearwhere mobility and radiation protection were
Judged more important than conventionalKhrushchev said he took Ihe reduction
unilaterally because NATO would have tied him
"in knots" during negotiations.
Many reliable sources indicate ihat in ihe early, the Soviets concluded Ihat, in aTO-Pactrolonged conventional phase might precede escalation to general nuclear war and that the use of nuclear weapons might be deterred altogether. Soviel military writings also suggest ihat unilsore balanced mix of tanks, infantry, and artillery are now required to overcomeTO's increasingly strong antitank defenses.
During the pastears. Sovietions have grown into balanced, combined-arm's organizations. Also,wo Soviet divisions were reorganized into larger independent corps with subordinate brigades rather than regiments. Thisin size and function to the mechanised corps af World Warunique inery high proportion of infantry and anillery io tanks, and for the first time mixed tanks and infantryermanent basts at the baiialion level. One of these independent corps, however, has now revertedivision. We are also beginning to observe changes within maneuver divisions.6 tank companies have been added io motorized rifie battalions to form similar combined-arms battalions in several divisions.
ill! tile Siiav
a corps-brigade siruciurc is supported by ongoing restructuring in the Non-Soviet Warsaw Paci ground forcesiic Hungarians converted their one tank division and five motorized rifle divisions into ilnec corps. Thc Bulgarians lepoitcdly willorps-brigade structure for their ground forces in
I9S9 Alihough thc Hungarian and Bulgarian corps arc organizationally distinct, the changes apparently arc boih intended to reduce officer personnel and perhaps save olher resources. Othereduction in headquarters personnel, there docs noi appear io
eciease in peaociimc active duty strength. The wartime manpower authorized strength, however, appears to have beenIn any case, neitherungarian nor Bulgarian corps would likely serveoviet model.
From an arms control perspective, increasing thc armor holdings of motorized rifle and tank divisions-regardless of whether the new formations become expanded divisions or evolveorps-brigadetbe possibility that the Soviets could remove one or more tank divisions from thc forward area while offsetting anv significant reduciions in the overall tank inventory.^
JIf thc expanded-battalion structure were adoptedjdcscale basis,eallocation would be necessary unless the Sovieu decidedignificant overall net increase in armor holdings opposite NATO. Of the few units that have adopted thc expanded battalions, the two motorized rifleappear to have eliminated their independent tank battalions and reallocated their tanks to thc motorized rifle battalions.^
The possibility cannoi be discounted, however, that ihc Sovieis arc seriously interested in reducing both thend ihc perceived offensive character of their ground foices for long-icrm economic, political, and security reasons. Restructuring under thesewould probably be required to distribute cuts evenly and toore efficient force out of remaining manpower andhiftorps-brigade structureigher proportion of infantry and artilleryower proportion of tanks, for example, couldore balanced combined-arms force and effectively minimize thc resulting low of combat power thai major manpower and tank cuts
Theo mtyie to hey aiicmpied
all llt(1iihe.rforce-UriKiurct By ecduciu,aoipmemeHniauri*E., Winera li-
would invariablymaller force siructurc could also allow some icduclion in cquipmenlif the Soviets arc satisfied with thc current raie of weapons modernization in key regions and can accept decreased amounts of cquipmenl in Ihcir inventory.
Wc judge thai the ongoing restructuring of the Soviet ground forces is intended primarily to make units more elTectivc fighting formations in prolongedcombal operations against NATO. Wcbelieve that, while thc restructuring could result in some unilateral force reductions, depending on the eventual design and scope ofthe new organization, wc doubt the Soviets intend to use these changesas panchemeeigned arms reduction move in Eastern Europe. The Sovieu realizearge-scale redisiribulion of their armor assets within East Germany would be delected andby NATO. Moreover, (hey almost certainly believe ihat if the redistribution resulted in little or no reduction in Soviet armor holdings, this would be discovered and reported by NATO.cheme involving thc removal of tanks from certain divisions in order to augment others, and ihc subsequeni withdrawal of ihc skeletal remains of thc divisionshe Soviet Union, would almost certainly beham by NATO if the Soviets aucmpied lo claim lhal an arms reduction had occurred. On thc other hand, if the restructuring resulted in an actualin armor holdings opposile NATO, then the Soviets would attempt io extract the maximumadvantages possible from this "unilateral" zt,-lure. While we cannoi yet determine how ihc ongoing rest mem ring will affect armor holdings opposite NATO, we are confideni in our ability to dclcci whether large-scale shifts in the Soviet armor lory in East Germany are thc resulteallocation of existingeduction in the Current equip men inventory, or lhe introduction of new equipment
Constraints on NATO Military; Anilities Il is dear that the Warsaw Pact will continue its long-term clTorts to restrict Western freedom of navigation in international waters and airspace and to impose otheras limiting the sire ofand imposing restrictions on where exercises may takethc adverse effect on NATO is greater than on thc Warsaw Pact. The Soviets and their allies will also again play "declaratory arms conirol" by suggesting agreements on nuclear- and chemical-weapons-frce zones, "no first use" of nuclear weapons. "frccKs" on defense spending, and other such measures ihai arc designed particularly to appeal to the NATO publics.
NATO has studied Soviet proposals over tbc pastears. In almost every instance, NATO has concluded that these proposals would benefit the East more than the West- To date. NATO's approach has been to weigh each individual future constraint proposal on iu own merits, and we would expect most Allies to respond in lhe same vein lo any consiiaint thai thc East might put forward. However, some Allies,thc West Germans and Ihe Duich, arc more open lo constraintsoncept ihan oihcrs. Thc West Germans, in particular, lend to lee arcaier political advantages resulting from constraints than other Allies. In thc miliiary sphere, they see constraints as another potential means for deterring surprise attack.
iThusoviet constraint proposal is likely to make Utile headway wiih mosi Allies. Moscow can expect to receive at hast moreolilc hearing from the Wcsi Germans.
Some of lhc proposals ihai arc particularly attractivehe Soviets arc those aimed al restricting lhe operations and deploymenl of NATO, andUS. naval forces. The Soviets have becomeconcerned in receni years by the growing US naval capabilily. which they see as presenting a
serious threat to thc Soviel Union ia an area in which they arc particularly vulnerable. In particular, thc Soviets arc concerned lhal
rolonged period of conventional combat. NATO (primarily US) naval forces could seriously deerade the Sovicl nuclear-powcred ballistic missile submarine (SSBN) fled.
Western conventional naval forces, especially air-Craft carriers and units armed with land attack cruise missiles, could attack Soviel territory,command-and-control facilities and land-based nuclear forces as well as forces throughout the theater of war.
Althoughubstitute for building and rncdermz ing their own naval forces, the Soviets recognize the potential value of naval arms control agreements and limitations on naval activities. Of particular interest to them probably are:
Improving lhe survrvabiliiy of iheir SSBNs through thc establishment of zones in which antisubmarine warfare (ASW) openiiions by lhc other side would be prohibited.
Meeting the submarine-launched cruise missile (SLCM) Ihreat by prohibiting or limiting thedeployed and restricting the geographic areas in which Ihey would be deployed.
Complicating ihe execution of lhe US Maritime Strategy through agreements (hat would prohibit peacetime US naval deployments in areas dose lo Soviet (errnory or, at lhe least, inhibit them through restrictions or lhc creationolilical climalc in which such deployments would run counter to Ihc letter or spiiit of such an agreement.
In addition io proposed limitations on navaland cutbacks In naval strategic systems, thc Soviets also continue to call (or actual reductions in the size of lhe general purpose order of battle of ilic US and Soviet names, with particular interest in mutualns on (he numbers of aircraft earners
Since lhc Sovicl* normally portray limitationsEuropean Reactions
naval uciiviiics at mutually binding. Ihey arcattractive to thc West European publics thatot familiar enough with the fundamental* of naval strategy to recognize that thc eflect of ihese proposal* Ls highly favorable to the Warsaw Pact.
Anotheropenhe Warsaw Pact is toormal proposal to Ihe NATO stales to begin
'In-',v j! aims Control Th*1
already laid the public diplomacy groundwork for doing so in lhe commcciKjoes issued after several foreignnd summit meetings. Wc doubt that the NATO Allies would agreeuch abulroposal would cost the Pact nothing, and the Soviets and their allies would gain some public diplomacy advantages even if NATO replied in tbe negative.
NATO took special pains to exclude naval forces from both MDFR and CDE. The Allies have also agreed that navil forces should notubject ofin the upcoming CST or CDE follow-onbc NATO partners recognize that Moscow's goal in
attempting to constrain naval forces would be to
affect (he West's ability to launch attacks on the
Soviet Union from the sea and lo movefiom North America and (he United Kingdom
to the Coniincnt.Q*
Despite more lhan two years of discuvsion, the NATO Allies as of8 still bad not resolved many issues regarding the new negotiations. Mote recently, in the aftermath of the successful INF negotiations. European leaders have shown greater interest in reducing conventionalignificant Soviet gesture, suchighly visible withdrawal of some forces from Eastern Europe, probably would raise expectations of progress in conventional aims control and could reduce aupport for costly West European weapon modernization programs.
Implications for lite Uniled Slates
The United States willumber of major challenges in the conventional arms control arena, (he most important of which will be
To maintain the uniiy of (he NATO Allianceime when ibe French and West Germans are generally approaching conventional arms control from different angles. Furthermore, thc Westarc fixed on (he notion of dealing in some fashion wiih short-range nuclear forces, whereas current USis not to ncgoiiatc on these forces.
To convince Allied governments, parliaments, and publics that NATO is correct in replying negatively to what may appear superficially to be attractive Warsaw_Pact offers to reduce forces as partegotiation, but which are in reality only beneficialhe Watsaw Pact.
Conversely, to convince these same bodiese flexible and read positively should thc Pact offer a
Given the large numerical superiority tbc Warsaw Pact has over NATO in almost every major type of miliiaiy cquipmenl, the Pact's heretofore effective publicnd Gorbachev's penchants forhc Soviets and (heir allies arcosition
to offer manylse Pact's ability ro offer unilateral reductions/withdrawals will present afourth major challenge to the Unitedoffer convincing arguments io Allies lo "pocket" ihc bcnefils of such actions by (hc Pad without feeling obligated to respond in kind.
We judge, however. lhal certain aspects of NATO's approach to conventional arms negotiations serve to protect long-term US interests. First, although NATO governmentsisputatious lot, they lendull together on key issues and are generally committed to keeping US forces in Ruropeolilically significant level. Second, conventional arms coniroleiy complex issue. Any proposal, no mailer how inviting, is nearly certain lo involve complicated data, interpretation, and verificationthat would take many months of negotiations even for thc most eager treaty participants.lhal the forces ofountries are at stake, long debate is sure to ensue. Thereownside to ihrs aspectonveniional arms treaty: should Ihe Soviets, forced by lough negotiations and economic requisites, eventuallyroposal ihat ultimately would serve US and NATO interests, it may be nearly as difhculibiain NATO conseniood treaty asad one.
The MBFR negotiations were in one tense successful for the West, because the United Slates and its Allies have been able to increase and modernize forces while at the same time ixgwiating in good faiih and offering reductions The challenge for NATO will be to continue the ongoing modernization, while al (he same lime negotiatingossible agreementore sophisticated adversary in an environmer( where Ihe public perception ofthe threal has been softened significantly.
Soviet Perceptions of NATO's Military Strength
Warsaw Pactenuine concern about NATO's military prowess, and its appreciation of the coireiaiipn of forces is rmich different from that of the West.r
*^thc Soviets andsec certain NATO force trends as causeIn particular, thc Sovicis are greatlyabout NATO's abilityontinue to producelechnology nonnuclear weapons and to mo-and reinforce military
Therearallel trend in Soviet assessments to assume greater effectiveness for mosteapons, including especially antitank guided mistlcs (ATGMs)and attack hchcopiers. Thus, it is not surprising 'hai when lhe Soviets publicly comment or NATO-W saw Pact force comparisons theyclaim lhal NATO hasuantitative and qualitative advantage over ihc Pact in ATGMs and atiack helicopters. Their views on these weaponalso help explain why lliey insist lhat equipment must be destroyed or withdrawn along with personnel and that reductions mull be byas to "capture" all the weapons assigned to an organic unit.
The Soviets alsorave and exaggeratedabout how quickly NATO, especially the West Germans, can mobilize forces and how quickly the United States can send reinforcemenis lo Europe. In
Thc Soviets arc particularly concerned aboulEvidence over the years shows lhat. inand comparing NATO and Pact aircraft,consistently rate NATO, partieubrlyas being much better thanaircraft It is apparent in Soviet writingsthat Soviet planners view ihcNATO has made in its air forces isgoal of achieving air supremacy duringconflict in Europe and thus ihc viabitiiy ofoperations
Thus, lhe Sovicis have consisteftily called forof what they have termed "tactical strikeMarshal Akhromeyev, Sovicl Chief of St JfT.
^hai thc strength of NATO's air forces "unsettles his side the most. He rcfcrtcd in particular lo lhend lhe West European Tornado aircraft as "very dangerous."
The Soviets have also frequently discussed tbc threat posed by Western- especiallyweapons and oflcn claimed lhat these weapons* destructive power approaches that of low-yieldweapons The Soviets refer in particular to the "Assaultvacuumnd "cavitynd they often discuss the dangers of precision location st*<kc systems (The US termacuum bomb is fuel an explosive weapon.)
In Ibe arms control conical, this Paa perception of NATO's ability to generate forces helps explain why the Pact persistently calls for equipment lo beor stored on national territories and why lbc Paa culls for reductions by units:
If Ihe United Sulci (and other Allies) couM notequipment in unit sets (POMCUS) in the Central Region, il would take the United Stales much longer lo provide reinforcemems
The West Germans have consistently stated ibey could rest accept reductions by units because doing so would seriously affect their mobilization plant This, along with verification procedures, hasonsideration for ihe Soviets and their allies in consistcnily calling for unit cult.
Thc Soviets and ihcir allies also arc concerned ihat NATO would initiate hostilities and- -because NATO forces arc slill generally smaller in size than thoseurpriseATO bliizkrieg. The Soviets are probably ascribing to NATO lbc same lypr of thinking tbey would adopt weic the Paa foices numerically inferior to ihosc of NATO. This hclpi explain why lhe Pact (asATO) emphasizes thai one of tbe objectives of conventional arms contiol should be tourprise altack and is another reason the Pactthc need for (eductions of "tactical strike
Shevardnadze have told Pact leaders thai it isto adopt measures that would eliminate ihc dangerurprise
The statements by Gorbachev ind Shevardnadzeihey have accepted ihe Soviet military new of the possibilityATO surprise atiack. In recent years Paci writers have made much of an aliened decision by NATO thai lhe West would attemptchieve only limited objectivesuropeannot (he complete annihilation of non-Soviet Warsaw Pact couniries and the USSR. By maiimizing ils shoit-ierm correlation of forcesapid, stealthy mobilization andimitedwiih limited objectives, NATO might, in lhe Soviet vie, hope to achieve significant political and miliiary objectives without risking ils survival.Original document.