Soviet Interest in ASW Limitation*
by the director ot ihe Soviet Union's USA Institute,rbaiov,ecent to the US suggest lhat the Soviois arc concerned about USmi submarine war* tore and could become interested in discussing some lorm ol ASW limitations at the Suaicgic Arms Limitaican Talks. Arbotovsaid thai ASW limitations shouldriority item furhat ihe US is accelcroiinfi ASW research, and thai Soviet naval leaders are con. cerned abotn the vulnerability of theire$ as ihey enier and leave the North Atlantic area.
expressions of concern for ASW limitations by ihc Soviets are new. Affjatov and members of hisrjiavtrd indiflcruUS representatives raised the1 '
j Arbatov's actions arc
OJ b'JIldVlOf Gjtitxj i: , ^iftflUV Of 0 whC-1 hi$
emphatic and vocal concern for ASM limitations was followedormal proposal from the Sovietelegation in the fall.
The Soviet Union lays ;he US tn ASW capability* Theol Soviet ASW sysitims is inferior and Soviet nuclear subrria nnes are noisier and easier to dcieci
CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY Directorate of Intelligence June
Soviet Interest in ASW Limitations.
Arbatov's Statements . . .
Arbatov as a
The Changing Soviet Attitude
Soviet ASW Programs
New Emphasis on Naval Analysis
Commence and queries regarding this publication are welcome. They "Xiy be directed to the Office of Strategic Hesearch,
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During his recent visit to the United States, Georgiy Arbatov, the director of the Soviet Union's USA Institute, stated on several separate occasions that the development of limitations on antisubmarine warfare capabilities shouldriority item on the SALT II agenda. He claimed that Soviet naval leaders had expressed great concern over theof their submarine fleet as it entered and left the North Atlantic area. He noted thatUS research in techniques of antisubmarine warfare might be viewed by the USSR as inconsistent with the expressed US desire to negotiate newat SALT II.
Several factors suggest the possibility that Arbatov's views presage an emerging position of the Soviet SALT delegation. The most important is that today US ASW technology and capabilities are far superior to those of the USSR. Soviet nuclearare noisier and therefore easier to detect than are US submarines. For these reasons, thomayhreat to the credibility of their sea-based deterrent and wish to negotiate some form ol ASW limitations. The Soviet leaders maya limitation on ASW development or deployment is preferable to the risk of falling further behind in the technological competition in ASW.
In the past, Arbatov ha* traveled in the Westell-prepared message which he has reiterated forcefully at every opportunity. In the summer for example,rip to the United States, Arbatov expressed Soviet concern about US antibal-listic missile deployment plans and emphasized the importance of an early agreement co limit these Prior to Arbatov's statements, both sides atad held that an arms limitation agreement would have to be comprehensive and include bothand defensive missile systems. Arbatov'sduring his September visit, however, convinced his hosts that the Soviets might, want to comeeparate ADM agreement quickly. Subsequently, inhe Soviet SALT delegation presentedeparate ogroomcnt limiting ABM deployment
in defense of national capitals. By his current Arbatov could bo trying to communicate high-level Soviet interest in limiting deployment of ASW attack submarines and advanced undersea sound detection systems.
It is possible that Arbatov is speaking for himself and his institute rather than for the Soviet leadership when he argues for the inclusion of ASW limitations on the agenda for SALT II. His statements may have been designed to elicit the views and informal comments of various American strategists concerning the factors to be weighed in considering ASW limitations. Thecomplexities of ASW limitations (for example, definitions, the status of multiple-purpose systems, monitoring by national means, and allianceresemble those which have emerged during current discussions of forward-based systems and surpass any of the issues encountered during the ABM negotiations. Arbatov's statements concerning the importance of ASW controls could reflect some preliminary analysis of these complexities by his staff.
Arbatov has steadily advanced the expertise,and influence of his institute within the Soviet Union. If his viewseflection of recent studies undertaken by his organization, they still coulda position which he believes is worthto top Soviet decisionmakers. On this visit-as in the past. Arbatov continued to emphasize his access to the Soviet leadership anc! Lhe significance of his role as an adviser at the highest levels of the Soviet government and Co:nnunist Party.
The Changing Soviet Atti tude
Until Arbatov's recent statements* the Soviets did not publiclyigh priority to the estab* lishmcnt of antisubmarine warfare controls. During the0 Pugwashhe American participants suggested that ASW systems (attackand large sonar detection systems) be limited
* The Pugvash Conference* on Science and World Affaire vera founded at Pkguamh, Nova Scotia, in The meetings provide an international forum for scientist* ond scholars to discuar* unof^iciolly problems of die-amamunt, scientific collaboration, and aid tocountries* Conferences ared once or ttoica fach year,
before they were deployed in significant numbers.
The Soviet representatives objected to the banning of attack submarines becauso of the threat presented by the US fleet of aircraft carriers, and they displayed indifference to the remainder of the proposal.
In earlyoscow meeting of US and USSR scholars, convened in preparation for1 Pugwash Conference in Romania, the matter of ASW developments was raisedS participant. ButColonel Valentin V.ember of the USA Institute, claimed that the subject did not merithe topic,.he asserted, was only in the "realm of conjecture" at this point since it involved facilities not yet tested on location and armaments not yet in national arsenals.
Analysis of Soviet production of weapon systems wiLh ASW capabilities (naval aircraft, surface ships, and submarines) since the late Fifties indicates that no specialized large-scale ASW construction program against ballistic missile submarines has been There have been surges in the construction of submarines armed with ballistic missiles and cruise missiles, but clearly the Soviets so far have notigh priority toubmarine forcerimary strategic ASW mission.
Moreover,ffort,have not duplicated the success whichStates has achieved with its underseasystem (SOSUS). Currentlysystems monitor the Norwegian Sea, thePacific Coasts of- tho US, and scattered areasPacific
The probability of surveillance, however, is mucil lower-for Soviet nuclear submarines on patrol. Soviet development of similar low-frequency soundsystems has been severely inhibited by both
geographic and technological factors.
The fact that'US nuclear submarines operate much more quietly than Soviet submarines is probably the
most difficult problem which the Soviets areLn ASW. The Soviets would have to exceed the capabilities of the US SOSUS systemarked degree to detect US nuclear submarines on patrol.
Hew Emphasis on Naval Analysis
within the lastonths, there have beenindications from Soviet defense intellectualsreater sensitivity towards American navalespecially in the areas of ASW techniques. Recently, two naval experts wore added to the staff of the USA Institute. Previously, individuals with naval backgrounds were conspicuously missing from the staffs of both the USA institute and the Institute of World Economics and Internationalother prominent Soviet research institute that has" devoted effort to analysis of US affairs.
Early ineorgiy Svyatov, a retiredsecond rank, joined the USA Institute. Svyatov worked asubmarine designer for tho Soviet Navy2 Apparently he is nowto follow "hardware" developments in the US vy.
The recent appearance of wo articles on the US Navy in the Institute monthly journal USA: Politics, Ideologyrowing Soviet
concern for American naval dove lopments - One essay, written by Svyatov,airly straightforwardof publicly announced American navalplans- Svyatov noted, however, that the United States planned to expand the construction of atomic submarineshiefly antisubmarinen the conclusion to his analysis, Svyatov asserted that further normalization ot US-USSR relations would be greatly assisted if the principle of equal security was extended to the field oi general purpose naval forces.
The other article, written byetired major general of aviation, devoted aamount of spaceescription ofto create an antisubmarine detectionthe entire vast expanse of the worldof great strategic importance." Teplinskiyin an earlier Hew Times article that through the NATO treaty, was being turned into raja ioi .ik i Ursiou.
In his current article, he further warned that the overall American naval expansion had not escaped the attention of Soviet planners and might evoke an *'appropri ate reacti Meved , however r olution to the problem consistent with the spirit of the US-USSR agreements signed in2 could be found.
ea' for -
The now interest in ASW discussions by Soviet defense intellectuals, the additions to the USA staff, the recently published statements on American ASW developmentsrominent Sovietand the apparent substantial Soviet lag in ASW technology support the inference that this is an issue of growing concern to the It seems likely that Home of themalready considering the problem in the context of arns liroitationn. The resemblance that Arbatov's recent actions bear to his earlier representations on behalf of ABM limitations inuggests that he nay beosition that has soma high-level support in the Soviet government.