MBFR: IMPLICATIONS OF DROPPING THE REQUIREMENT FOR REDUCTION OF A SOVIET TANK A

Created: 3/28/1977

OCR scan of the original document, errors are possible

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MICROFILMED

MEMDRANTXM

Implons of Propping the Requirement for Reductionoviet Tank Army

hasroposed that the US amend itsfoi withdrawaloviot tnnk army with fivemen,anks to omit tlic requirement that tho manpower, and tanksank army. Wethis shift in terms of its implications fornegotiability, and verification.

assume tliat neither of thc negotiatingconstrain tho organization or location of tho That is, the Soviets would be free under cither optionresidual forcos within tho NCA to fill any gaps leftunits or to meet what are perceived to be militaryrequirements. Under tho current option, forSoviots would bo free to shift forces from elsewhere within

Comments and queriea regarding thia memorandum arc wctcoma,ba dircatad to

Offioe of Strategio^aoearon,

5

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th"to fill tlic void IcTt by the departing tank amy. (In fact, wc doubt that cither side win accept constraints onor reorganizing its residual forces.) Under the proposed option, the reduction could be spread in-irediatel/ throughout the force Thus, cither option would permit the Soviets to toko tho actual reductions wherever they chose.

Military Capabilities Considerations

3. The proposed option almost certainly would have less military impact, tliough the difference might well be minor. Dropping tho requirement that the Soviets withdraw an army would allow them to retain the existing nnny command structure nnd non-divisional combat ond support units that would othorwiso bo part of the withdrawal package. Tor each army thesecud surfncc-to-surfacc missile bvigado withaunchers, nnrigade, anAA regiment, and various engineer, motor transport, ond signal units. If these remained in tlic NGA, tho Sovlots would have tho snmo number of ormios (albeitach division of which would onjoy,reater mensure of non-divisional support than it dots currently. Inways, however, the contrast between the options in terms of overhead supportuestion of Soviet convenience. Neither

optJon inposos Units on other thnn manrowor und tnnks, so that, even In the case of tlic tank army, the Soviets could reintroduce the overhead elements once they had been withdravm.

present option would require the Soviets totho 1st Guards Tank Ami)ankotorizedbut tho proposed option would permit them tothemselves the mix of tank or motorized riilo divisionswithdrawn. We doubt, however, that the Soviets wouldof the opportunity offered by tho proposed optionmotorized rifle divisions for all tank divisions inp;ickngc. The motorized rifle division has beenin the past several years that it now has greaterand versatilityank division. The Soviets

might considor the notorized rifle division lo be tlic more valuable, because of its greotcr utility inreakthixxighon-nuclear conflict. Both sides now onticipntoVTO-Nnrsaw Pact wnr would commene*erhaps protracted period ofwarfare.

existing option would requlro that thethe reduction of0 non-divisional personnel inof integral cxaabat and support units, many of whichto boigher combat readiness than most support

units and many of which are manned by technically trnincd personnel. This certainly wouldore deleterious effect on Soviet military capabilities than if these non-divisional reductions could be taken in unskilled personnel from units that wore not required to beigh state of readiness.

Thc Soviets probably would be moreaccept tho proposed option, because its impact on theirwould be less than tliat of the cxUting option. option would leave them with an intact array commandstructure around which to reconstitute the force as Moreover, this option would provide them greaterspreading tlie reductions and restructuring residual forcesredeployments. Rather than shift divisions from rearfill the void created by withdrawalank army, thewould prefer to withdraw precisely these rearwardinitially.

Thc verification issue is similarly two-

sided, [

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Original document.

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