CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY
MEMORANDUM FOR: Director of Central Intelligence
MILITARY THOUGHT: "Some Conclusions on the
NATO Armed Forces' Sxerclsc SIDE STEP'; by Colonel-General S. Ivanov
1. Enclosederbatim translation of an article which appeared in the TOP SECRET Special Collection of Articles of the Journal "Militaryoyennayaublished by the Ministry of Defense, USSR, and distributed down to tbe level of Army Commander.
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FOR THE DEPUTY DIRECTOR, PLANS:
approved for release
RICHARD HELMS '
cc: The Director, Defense Intelligence Agency
Military Representative of the President
Special Assistant to the President for National Security Affaire
Director for Intelligence Tho Joint Staff
Assistant Chief of Staff, Intelligence Headquartera, U. S. Air Force
Assistant Chief of Staff for Intelligence Department of the Army
Director of Naval Intelligence Department of the Navy
Director, National Security Agency
The Director of Intelligence and Research Department of State
Director, Division of Intelligence Atomic Energy (kssmlaelon
National Indications Center
Chairman, Guided Missiles and Aatronautles Intelligence Committee
Deputy Director for Intelligence
Assistant Director for National Estimates
Assistant Director for Current Intelligence
Assistant Director for Research and Reports
Assistant Director for Scientific Intelligence
SUBJECT : MILITARY THOUGHT: "Some Conclusions on the NATO Armed Forces' Exercise SIDEy Colonel-General S. Ivanov
Followingerbatim translation of an article titled "Some Conclusions on tbe NATO Armed Forcea' Exercise SIDEy Colonel-Generalvanov.
This article appeared in0 Second Issuepecial version of the Soviet military Journal Voyennaya Mysl (Military Thought). This Journal la published irregularly and Is ciaasidled TOP SECRET by the Soviets. It le distributed only within tbe Ministry of Defense down to the level of Army Commander.
Headquarters Comment: Some of the detail on the attached map is unclear; although the majority of the designations can be accepted with confidence, there is some room for error In-the breakdown of the various army corps and similar small print. It is also difficult to distinguish between the lines of the successive positions. The transliterated letters" indicate military units without designations.
Some Conclusions on the NATO Armed Forces'DB STEP" by
Tbe leaders of the aggressive NATO Bloc plan touture world war primarily by meansurprise attack against the countries of the Socialist Camp. One cannot rule out theirorld wareriod of sharp political tension or local wars. They envisage carrying out preparations for en aggressive war lnay that they will be interpreted as purely "defensive" preparations, not only by the enemy but also by tbe personnel of the armed forces and by the populations of the member-countries of the bloc.
Decisive significance is attached to the initial period of the war, in the course of which it Is intended to destroy the atomic potential of the enemy, to disorganize the national administration and economy, to disrupt tbe mobilization and deployment of the armed forces, to undermine the morale of the people, end in this way to achieve the immediate strategic goals of the war and to predetermine its outcome to their benefit. For the fulfillment of these tasks It is planned to bring to bear the greatest possible number of forces and moans capable of using nuclear weapons.
The operational plans for the initial period of tbe war are periodically tested in operational-strategic exercises, during whlcb different variations for launching and waging war given various degrees of preparedness of the armed forces, are studied and tested.
From this point of view, the command-staff exercise, BIDE STEP, conducted ln9 with the participation of troops of the Allied Armed Forces of NATO merits speclsl attention. In the Importance of the problems which were being worked out, in ita sweep and inapes it ion of the participants it was one of tbe largest exercises of recent years. It covered almost the entire area of Europe, of the Atlantic, and of the Mediterranean.
The cccmanderB-in-chief and staffs of the armed forces of the North European, Central European, South European, Atlanti* and Mediterranean theaters of military operations, the commanders and staffB of the branches (vid) of the armed forces and of the regions (rayon) in the theaters of military operations, the commanders and staffs of amy groups, the tactical aviation comaanda of field and air armies, the commanding officers and staffs of army corpsndnd also the commanding offlcera and staffs of atomic artillery, guided missile and free rocket unite participated ln the training exerciee.
In addition, the central directorates of defense ministries, commands snd staffs of military-territorial organs, rear elements (organhe central directorates of Minlstriea of Internal Affairs, of Transport, of the Merchant Fleet, of Economics, of Health, of Communicationsumber of other agencies from all European member- countries of NATO participated in this exercise.
Exercise SUJE STEP consisted of four exercises which were conducted accordingommon plan and against the backgroundingle strategic situation.
zto.-vt were the exercises Of tbe Allied Armed Forces cf SATO of the Central European and of the Southeastern part of the South Europeanof Military Operations ln which problems of preparation and conduct of tbe first operatlona in the Initial period of the war were worked on. The basic goals set were: perfection of the system for bringing the allied and national armed forces to combat readiness; testing the methods of using nuclear arms ln the course of the initial operations; tbe organization of command; tbe coordination of forces and means and of the comprehensive support of military operations.
At tbe sameear area exercise vas conducted "in -all European theaters of military operations with the aim of testing the existing system of supply, as well as of studying the ability of member-countries of tbe bloc to support their armed forces with supplies independently. American troops stationed ln Europepecial rear area exercise,"RAPIDystrayan which questions of material-technical support of nuclear ground troops units were studied.
On the basisommon ope rational-strategicaval exercise was also conducted on defense of communications and on control of merchant shipping, In which the coordination between the Allied SATO staffs and the national staffs and establishments on questions of defense of naval communications and of insuring uninterrupted merchant navigation in the beginning of the war was worked on.
Exercise SIDE STEP was under the command of the Supreme Commanders-in-chief of the Allied Armed Forces of NATO in Europe and on the Atlantic. For direct command of the exercise, directing staffs were created at all staffs of formations and large units of the armed forces, as well as at the commands of military-territorial organs of various establishments participating in the exercise.
This exercise was conductedackground, of "military operations- in Europe and in the Atlantic area between the armed forces of NATOnd the armed forces of the WarsawRANGE ).
According to the given situation, the war between "BLUE and ORANGE' beganesult of gradual sharpening of International tension lasting for more than five months. The situation and the actiona of the two sides were worked out so as to place all the blame for unleashing the war on the hat is, on the Socialist countries, while the Imperialist states, the NATO members, would be represented asictims of aggression, supposedly forced to carry out counter measures to the "aggressive" actionsRANGE. If this rather artless camouflage is discarded, the predatory plana and actions of the bloc headed by the USA can be seen distinctly through the entire idea and course of the exercise.
Bow then was the development of events up to the outbreak of var envisaged?
The first periodas characterized by "International equilibrium". Thia was followederiod of "international distrust*uring the course of which relations between the leading countries of the political groupings deteriorated. The reason for this wasutually prejudiced appraisal of the actiona of the two sides, doubt of the sincerity of each other's policies and also the deadlock.
which had been reached in the negotiations of the leading powers on control of the production of nuclear arms (just exactly on control, rather than on ^prohibition of nuclear arms).
The period of distrust was followed by increased international tension (July-August).
Since the international situation "continued tohe NATO commandhreatening situationeptember which continued for two weeks (until Ik September). During this period, all bloc participants mapped out measures for partial obilization, for bringing the armed forces to combat readiness, and for establishing the necessary order in the rear. After this, the system of alerts adopted by NATO vas put into9nd during this time the armed forces were brought to full combat readiness and were deployed In operational formations.
In this manner, events gradually developed up to the beginning of armed conflict. Evidently the NATO command reckons that under these conditions the aggressive bloc will succeed la completely preparing Tor war against the countries of the Socialist Camp, and at the same time in disorienting vorld opinion, with which, lt is true, -the imperialists do not now especially concern themselves. However, this by no means signifies that they plan only this method of preparation for unleashing war. If ve analyze other exercises, especially the practical measures of NATO infor future war, then it ia not difficult to be convinced of the fact that they place first priorityurprSsc! attack against the countries of the SoSlallBt Camp, "Secretly preparederye.
Further events developed in the following manner: ORANGE, having concentrated threeivisions) In the Central European Theater of Military Operations, And -also -considerableivisions) on the Balkan Peninsula and in the Caucasus, launched massed air and missile nuclear strikes0 hours oneptember against airfields, the means oft nuclear attack (sredstvo yadernogyorts, large communication nets, and against BLUE troops; simultaneously, .they took .the.offensive with groupings of ground troops. In the Central European theater, ORANGE directed the main attacks in the directions of: Magdeburg; Hanover; Mueneter; Eisenach; Frankfurt am Main; Kalserelautern. Auxiliary attacks vere launchederies of directions
the Balkan Peninsula, the main attack was directed against Istanbul and two attacks against Salonika from the territory of Bulgaria and Albania. From the Caucasus, the offensive was carrial outeries of directions deep into Turkish territory.
BLUS carriesuclear offensive ^attack/ using strategic, tactical, and carrier aviation, missiles and other ground troop weapons. The groupings of ground troops on allrfronts conduct defensive actions and byeptember fallepth of fromm, where they stop the offensive of ORANGE. At tbe same time BLUE concentrate their reserves and prepare to go over to tbe counter attack. 0 hours oneptember the exerelae vas concluded.
Let us briefly examine the grouping of ground troops set up at exercise SIDE STEP at the beginning of military operations.
In the Central European Theater were deployed the two armyhe Northern and thehich existed there in peacetime. The Northern Army Group consisting ofivisions, one brigade group, and two regiments, strengthened by four atomic support battalions (division atomnoyCorporal" missile regiment was deployedm strip (poloaa) along the Veser and Fuldam to the west of ths border between the PRO and the German Democratic Republic.
The Central Army Group consisting of the 7th American and the 1st Frenoh Armlts (l* divisions, ons tank group, four separate regiments (otdelnyy polk) andtomic support battalions) deployedm stripinem from the GDR border and in places upm.
The desire of the NATO 9ommand to cover the entire strategic front with divisions to sn average operational density ofm per division attracts attention. In front of the defenseover zone (zona prlkrytiya) is organized, where reconnaissance unite operate and possibly, individual units from the first echelon divisions. Cover units sre distributedonsiderable front-Their mission is to carry out holding actions in front of the basic defense line. They are incapable of offering aerioua resistance to the advance of our troops.
In the strategic reserve of the NATO commend there vereivisions from the complement of the first echelon of NATO (French and Belgian armyutch division. West German units formed by mobilization, aa well as large units transferred from North Africa, North America and England).
Approximately the aaae concept was applied to the operational formation of NATO, force* on the Balkan Peninsula and in eastern Turkey.
Thus, In exercise SIDE STEP the NATO commandypical linear defense along tbe entire strategic front, deploying the basic mass of Its divisionsingle line. efease condemned the ground troops to passivity, and consequently led to the instability of the entire defense, which waa faced with strong offensive groupings of CRANQE ground troops superiorignificant degree to the NATO forces.
At first glance it amy appear incomprehenslblle that the NATO ccmraandefense in the theaters of military operations, which can not withstand an offensive when nuclear arms are used. If one analyzes the entire course of the exercise, however, then It is not difficult to be convinced of the fact that the NATO command in the exercise relied basically not on the action of ground forces, but on the usearge quantity of tactical and strategic nuclear weapons, on the conductuclear offensive. Under these conditions, the ground troops which hod been brought to readiness by the beginning of military operations- were entrusted with tbe task of covering the base locations of nuclear means irovanlye yademyye aredstva) and insuring the carrying outuclear offensive and tbe deployment of the strategic reserves. By means of nuclear attacks, the JIATO command evidently counted on inflicting such destruction on the enemy as to insure that its ground forces could go over to the offensive withoutords
It la well known tbat ground troopa are assigned an active role in the" NATO plans of preparation for future war, especially in the Central European Theater. According to theae plans,uccessful nuclear offensive, groupings of NATO ground troops must go overecisive offensive with the mission of destroying the troops of tbe Warsaw Pact countriea, of occupying the territories of the GDR, Poland, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, and of carrying
military operations onto the territory of the USSR. The moat responsible role in the offensive is entrusted to the armored snd airborne troops, who must quickly and effectively exploit the results of the nuclear strikes by decisive actions.
If for any reasons the surprise nuclear attack of the Western Bloc does not achieve the expected results, defensive operations by the ground troops are envisaged. In order to win time for the concentration of reserves and the creation of conditiona for going over to tbe counter-offensive. It is calculated that thisay be achievedhort period. Defensive operations are also based on the maased use of nuclear weapons, on broad maneuvering of forcea and means, on the carrying out of counter-attacks snd counter-blows by highly, mobile units and large units, and on the wide use of all possible obstacles. Facts at our disposal indicate that the defensive grouping of ground troops sot up in the exercise did not fully ensure the conduct ofefensive operation.
Let us examine the course of combat operations in exercise SIDE STEP.
According to the plan, ORANGE started military operatlona by striking massed nuclear blows by missile troops and aviation with the simultaneous taking of the offensive by the ground troops. Actually the game waa conducted differently. ORANGE launched the first massed nuclear strike athours oneptember (on the Balkan Peninsula0ut the ccenanders of the exercise gave the signal for the use of nuclear weapons by BLUESO hours oneptember, that is, almost two hours before the "enemy" attack. It follows that tbe first nuclear blow at the exerciae was struck by the NATO troops, which is what they are Indeed preparing for. Thisre-emptive (upreahdayuBhchly) andcounter" (otvetnyV)'rv.iclear attack, as the NATO coinmond was trying to show.
From tho first minutes of the war the NATO troopsuclear offensiveroad Bcale. Tho nuclear offensive planned by our probable enemies in the initial .period of the war can be arbitrarily divided into two parte. The first and main part la tbe destruction of objectives ln the Soviet Onion throughout the entire depth of its territory by strategic nuclear means of attack. This part of the nuclear offensive was not played out in the exercise, but It was taken -into account. Tbe second part of the
nuclear offensive involves the destruction of objectives on the borders of the theaters of military operations and partly on the territory of the USSR and of the other Socialist countries upepthm from the front line by forcea and means under the Jurisdiction of theater cemands.
The principal means of nuclear attack In the theaters of military operations are tactical aviation and cruise missiles (ssjoolety-snaryady) of the "Matador" type, which arc at disposal of the command in the theater. The missile weapons and atomic rtillery of the ground troops which are under the direction of thef army groups, fleld armies, and army corps, end la the USf divisions as well, are also used.
The following missions were entrusted to tactical aviation In tho course of the nuclear offensive; the destruction of the means of nuclear attack (aredstvo yadernogohe neutralisation of radiotechnlcal equipment; the disruption of communications; the destruction of reserves and of other enemy objectives; the support of their own troop operations.
The battle against the means of nuclear attack was considered by the NATO command as one of tbo most important tasks of the nuclear offensive. This was tactaehe testauetlan af airfieldslaunch sites, nuclear weapons, aviation and missiles, and of command centers. The final goal of this battle was set aa the achievement of nuclear superiority over the enemy.
To disrupt communications, bridges and road Junctions were destroyed, and barriers vere created by atomic means. This was also intended to disrupt and interdict the transport of troops and supplies, to make difficult the maneuvering of troops, and to prevent tho bringing up of etrategic reser.ves.
Tactical aviation was. used for the direct support of ground troops by striking blows against the combat formations of enemy troops, enemy reserves, command posts, depots, and also by conducting aerial reconnaissance. However,imited number of aircraft wki made available for the direct support of ground troops.
The organization of the centralized control (upravlenlyc) of nuclear atrlkes in the South European Thooter of Military Operations attracts attention. Tho resources of the 6th Fleet and the air
command were combined. For this, an operational center for Joint operations waa formed at the 6th Allied Tactical Air Command; In this center there were representatives of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief of NATO Armed Forces in Europe, of the commander-in-chief of the
armed forces of the theater and of the commanders of the ground forces, the air force, and the navy. This center received requests from field and air armies for nuclear strikes, took decisions and
issued the necessary instructions. Under this system, more than two hours elapsed from the moment intelligence information was received concerning identified targets for nuclear strikes toime an order was Issued for their destruction.
Operational-tactical missiles and atomic artillery were used to strike nuclear blows against objectives in operational-tact leal depth and to support the combat operations of the ground troops. The majority of the missile and atonic artillery unite was alio ted to the army corps. Corporal" missile regiment was left under the command of the Commander of the Northern Army Group, while two "Redstone" missile groups (grupa) were under the command of the Commander of the ?th American Army.
Available information, though incomplete, concerning the use of nuclear weapons ln exercise SIDE STEP attests to tho significant increase In the number of nuclear strikes during the first daysthe operation in comparison with previous exercises. Thus, the hth Allied Tactical Air Commanduclear units (yedlnlts) during the firstours of the war, the 7th American Army useduclear rounds (boyevyye pripaay) in six days. In the South European Theater of Militaryuclear rounds were" used in the six days off which were used during the course of the first three days.
The experience gained in working on -the problems-of the use of nuclear weapons ln exercise SIDE STEP confirms the existence of plans by tbe NATO command for the use of sudden massed (several -wordsith the aim of winning nuclear superiority, inflicting defeat on enemy troops, changing the strategic situation to their advantage, and insuring that their ground troops can go over to the offensive. The implementation of these plansuture war con cauae great damage to our armed forces in the theaters of military operations, unless timely effective methods to disrupt the nuclear offensive of the enemy are undertaken by our side at the very beginning of the war. In this connsctlon,
It le worth noting neveral weak points ln the so-called nuclearight of NATO. The basic means for using nuclear weapons ln tha theaters of military operations by the probable or.emy re=alns tactical aviation, againat which combat isomplex problem at the present time. arge proportion of the nuclear weapons of the NATO ground troops consists of them cannonss howitzers, the annihilation of which does not present any special difficulty either.
In thereat deal of attention was given to tbe. defeat in combat operations of the ground troops (prolgrysh boyevykh deyetvly sukhoputnykh voysk). Although these questions have not been sufficiently clarified, the' following-conclusions may still-be mode on tho basis of available Information.
Holding actions ln the cover zone went on for one day. By tha end of the day oneptember, GRANGE approached the basic line of defense havingistance of fromm. Fromoeptember NATO troops carried out defensive operations and were forced to retreat with continuing resistance in all directions. The general depth of the withdrawal was on them, the average tempo of the withdrawalay in major directions, (na glavnykhay in secondary directions. Tbe withdrawal was accomplished evenly, almost along the entire front, under cover of massed nuclear strikes. In the course of the defensive engagement, no active operations of any kind were apparent on the part of the groupings of ground troops. By the end ofeptember the front had stabilized. It can be supposed that from this line (rubezh) lt was planned to goo the counter-offensive with the concentrated strategic reaervea, who bad not participated ln tbe defensive engagements.
The indicated method of conducting the defensive operations of NATO troops in exercise SIDE STEP has its strong and its weak sides. The strong side of tbe defense lo the massed use of nuclear weapons, while its weak side may be considered to be the shallow linear formation of the ground troops and their insufficient aggressiveness during the course of tho engagement. In order to shatterefense, it is necessary to destroy the means of nuclear attack and to organize skillfully the operations of mobile groupings of troops in the moat Important directions with the aim of quick penetrationreat depth and the conduct of maneuvering operations. Aa far es the reserves who have concentrated in the
rear arehey can also be uncovered and crushed by nuclear strikes. However, in the preparation of our armed forces lt la necessary to assume that they will have to conduct offensive operations in the beginninguture war under more complex conditions andore aggressive enemy.
Let us examine in more detail the more Important questions which were worked out in exercise SIDE STEP.
First of all let us conalder the meaaurea taken by the member-countries of the aggressive NATO Bloc In preparing for and launching the war. The study of these measures was one of the important goals of the exercise. Incidentally, by these measures one may Judgeertain degree the actual plana of the probable enemy In regard to the unleashing of war against the countries of the Socialist Camp.
In the period of mounting International tension, that Is approximately twoalf months prior to the beginning of theeries of concealed measures are taken In the NATO countries in preparation for war. With the Introductionhreatening situation preparation Is intensified. The NATO Command looks upon the threatening perioderiod of direct preparation for war. Under various pretexts (conduct of exercises, various call-ups and other "usual"oncealed and comprehensiveof the Bloc's preparedness for unleashing an armed conflict takes place during this period. First of all, it was planned to intensify construction and repair work at allbbyekt) of major military significance,imultaneous discontinuation of work at secondary and non-military lnatallations. Government control was established for the distributiononsumption of fuel and critical raw materials; the security ofstorage depots, "pl-pe Hoes,centers, and other important lnatallations was strengthened; measures were carried outroad scale for antiaircraft defease end antl-atomlc protection; the evacuation of the moat Important enterprises from border areas waa planned.
Ten days prior to the beginning of military operations the transfer of French firot-line large units and units from North Africa to France and onto the territory of the FRG begins. At tbe same time secret partial mobilization is carried outumber of NATO member-countries and the building up to preacribed strength
of large units of the first echelon and the reaervea; Intelligence la activated as veil.
In exercise SIDE STEP the Introductionhreatening situation did not signify change over to martial lav. Martial lav vas introduced on lfc September, that is, five days before the var, vhen themander-ln-Chlef of the Allied Armed Forces of NATO received authority from the Permanent NATO Council (its highest political body) to put the alert systems into operation.
Two alert systems have been worked out in NATO: tbe military alert system, and the so-called official alert system. The first is brought into operation by the Supreme Commander-in-Chief of tbe Allied Armed Forces of the Bloc oven without the sanction of the NATO Council In that instance when armed conflict may be auddonly unleashednehour period. In this system measuresurely military nature are carried outbringing to combat readiness mainly the Allied Armed Forces.
The second alert system Is brought into operationesolution of the NATO Council in that instance- vhen the military-political situation Is aggravated relatively gradually. This systemimple, reinforcedeneral alert, and signifies general political, military, and economic preparation by the Bloc for entry into var. It la Important to cote that the Supreme Commander-in-chief of the Allied Armed Forces of NATO is granted the right to independentlyimple and reinforced alert In case of extraordinary . 'r; .
In this manner, the military command of NATO, which is in the hands of the USA, has In essence unlimited authority to the extent of unleashing war, without considering the opinions of the other Bloc members. The alert declared by the Secretary of "Defense of the USA, Gates, on tho eve of the meetings of Chiefa of State in Paris, does not enter into the NATO alert system. This alert Is considered to be an Internal affair of the USA.
Exercise SIDE STEP vae playedords missing) alerts.
A Simple Alert vas declared0 hours on lU September. On the basis of lt the lav on the state of emergency goes into effect in the member-countries of NATO. Secret mobilization
measures are carried outroad scale, military reserves are called up, the units and large units assigned to the disposal of the SATO Command are brought up to wartime strength, as are the cadre units of national subordination. Armed forces in areas cf permanent disposition are brought to combat readiness, as are the troops of territorial and local antiaircraft defense,the system of shore defense, etc. Reserve units of various branches of the service arc formed, and new units of national defense forces (vnutrennaya oborona) and various units of special designation are created. The border defense, and the antiaircraft, anti-atomic, anti-chemical, and anti-bacteriological defense of troops, of the population, and of military and non-military installations are strengthened. The wartime communications system is brought Into operation, and preparations are made for anti-communications obstructions (zagrazbdeniye) and destruction. The movement of material, technical and medical supplies Into the zone of combat operations is begun. At the same time many other measures are also carried out (the limiting of non-military deliveries, partial evacuation of the moans of transport from border areas, preparation for the evacuation of the population from combat zones, establishment of control over refugees, intensification of counter-intelligence, etc.).
Two days before the beginning of militaryeinforced Alert is declared. In these tvo days formations and large units are deployed along lines and in positions in accordance with the operational plan, and aerial reconnaissance is significantly Increased. The Border Guard is replaced by ground troops. At this same time, tho delivery'of nuclear weapons to airfields and to firing positions is organized, and all the reserves of manorial supplies of the troops are brought up to -the totablished -norms. Evacuation of supply depots, enterprises, raw material reserves, and the means of transport from border areas to the rear is organizedroad scale, censorship is Introduced, and the means ofeds tvo radlo-voyny) are readied for activation. The carrying out of the above-mentioned measures upon the declarationeinforced Alert two days before the beginning of military operations has been notedumber of training exercises. This indicates that the NATO Command is striving to limit to the utmost the time needed for deployment of armed forces and operational formations and their arrival ln attack positions prior to the beginning of military operations.
The order of the Supreme Commander-in-Chief to use nuclear arms was giveninutesours.
We have examined ln detail the measures carried out by the NATO Command in exercise 3IDS STEP in the way of preparations for unleashing war. Of course, these are far from all of the measures which vlll be carried out in an actual situation. For this reason, our intelligence organs: are. facedomplex and responsible missionto keep all the preparations of the probable enemy forew war under constant observation in order to give timely warning to our armed forces.
Of all the measures carried out by the NATO Command in the way of preparations for-unleashing war, mobilization of the armed forces', of member-countries of the aggressive bloc merits- special attention. In exercise SIDE STEP, secret partial measures for building up the armed forces through mobilization startedays before the beginning of military operations.
Five days prior to the beginning of war the scale of secret mobilization in all the member-countries of the aggressive NATO Bloc broadened significantly. We do not have full information concerning the specific form taken by the development of mobilization in this exercise. However,umber of training exercises and certain other measures of the NATO Command are analyzed, one may come to the following conclusions.
In accordance with existing agreements,ivisionsumber of separate brigade groups, units, and subunits were assigned to tbe Allied Armed Forces fromivisions available In the NATO countries at the beginning However, of these, onlyivisions, andrigade groups and separate units were subordinated to the Allied Command. The remaining large units and units remain under the subordination of national commands as part of the troops of the first and second echelons.
The large units subordinated to the Allied Command areIn peacetime at fulltrength and do not require additional build-up through mobilization. Almost all of them participated in the exercise and were deployed in operational formations two days prior to the beginning of war. The members of NATO provided the following number of divisions: ivisions. mall
number of divisions were provided by Belgium (twoolland (twond Portugal (one).
Tbe first echelon of HATO is comprised ofivisions and four brigades. In peacetime, they are maintained atercent personnel strengthercent equipment strength. Five days are alloted for their mobilization build-up. It must be assumed that these divisions could be mobilized and fully ready by the beginning of war, although information is lacking about their use in the exercise.
The remainingivisions which comprise the second echelon of NATO, are kept atercent strength during 'peacetime. It wouldays to bring them to combat readiness.
What base do the NATO countries have for the build-up of ground troops through mobilization?
In the USA, In addition to the existingivisions are in Europe) there areationalAmy Reserve divisionsillionof which systematicallyombat training. Theconsists ofhousand men. In this manner,has at Itsrained reserve of upillionthe USA ;much attention is being given to the problem ofmobilization and the reinforcement of troops deployed intheaters of military
Tbe FROivisions et the beginning' When the Simple Alert was declared (lhssembly points for mobilization were set up in Western Germany and the call-up of reserves was started under the guise of refresher training. Byeptember lt was planned to bring all large units and units of the Bundeawehrull wartime complement, toonsiderable number of new units, and to form personnel reserves. Specifically, reserve battallona were formed in each of the eight divisions under the subordination of the NATO Command. In military districtseserve training battalions were formed, which were deployed In areas acjolajng tbe western border of the FRO. The total number of enlisted and non-commlBstoned officer personnel In the organized reserve byeptember washousand men, andeserve officers. Inseveral words missing) -men who had passed the examination but who had not served In the Bundeswehr.
In Great Britain at the beginning0 there were six divisions andrigades and brigade groups. The base for the build-up of ground troopa in wartime is the territorial army, consisting ofivisions which In peacetime are Keptercent strength.
In other NATO member-countries contingents of militaryare formed. Large units and unita of reserves similarAmerican and English ones do not exist in the majority ofat the present
It would not be correct to evaluate the potential build-up of NATO armed forces through mobilization in terms of divisions of ground troops. Under contemporary conditions tbe evaluation of the probable enemy's potential for the means of nuclear attack acquires decisive significance. Means of this type which are available to the NATO Command are: tactical aviation, cruise missiles "Matador" andacticalHonestLittlend atomic0 na cannonm howitzers). As la known, the strategic means of nuclear attack have not been put at the disposal of the NATO Command, they are in the hands of the Anglo-American command and may be used in addition to the existing forces of NATO.
At the present time, plans ore maturing for tho creation of allied strategic nuclear forces within the Western European Alliance which Includes Great Britain, France, PRO/Italy, Belgium,etherlands, and Luxemburg, that ia, not all the members of NATO. Evidently, what la intended is to create air force and DtBM units capable of using nuclear weapons. These units are considered to be the baaic meana of war in Europe. For tbe present, no such allied strategic nuclear forces as yet exist in Europe. In exercise SHE STEP, operational-tactical nuclear forces were used.
Byeptember all the tactical aviation forces available to the Allied NATO Command were brought to full combat readiness. In the Central European Theater of Military Operations the 2nd and -th Allied Tactical Air Commands, composedquadrons0 aircraft, includingighters-bombers and moreighters of the Air Defense>,were readied. In addition, the USA and England allocatedighter-bombers and fighters of the Air Defense. This number of aircraft basically conforms to the combat strength of NATO aviation in peacetime.
In the South European Theater of Military Operatlona the 6th Allied Tactical Air Command was brought to readineM. In addition, two tactical air squadrons were transferred to this theater from the USA and the carrier aviation of the 6th Fleet was used.
Significant forces of tactical aviation remain under the subordination of the national commands of the USA, England, and France. It was also planned to bring this aviation to combat readiness. In line with this the principal members of NATOreating aviation reserves for replacing losses. The best sre the Air Force reserves of the USA (the National Guard and tbe Air Forcehich can also be brought to combat readiness.
Tactical missiles and atomic artillery are for the present under the command of the USA and, in part, England. At the present time, thereattalions of guided misailes and free rockets of an operational-tactical designation and atomic artilleryln the European theaters, of whichattalions are located in the Central European Theater of Military Operations. Evidently all of them took part In the exercise. In the last two days before the boginning of the war lt was planned to deploy all these units la the appropriate areas and to equip them with nuclear weapons. The NATO Command considers that there is an insufficient quantity of those means of nuclear attack to support the combat operations of tho allied ground troops. For this reason lt is planned3 to bring tbe number of battalions, together with the former ones,issile battalions of ope rat local-tact leal designation.
In this nanner, exercise SHE STEPumber of other training exercises indicate that the NATO Command evidently plans to carry out ln advance secret, comprehensive measures for the build-up of tbe armed forces through sob Hi tat ion under conditions when war is precedederiod of sharp political tension. At tho sane time lt is known, that in recent years in the West many of the military ideologists of Imperialism are coming out against the build-up of the armed forces through mobilization before the beginning of war in view of the difficulty of hiding thisand consequently, the impossibility ofurprise attack. For this reason It is proposed to have auch'arded forces"-in* standing combat readiness ln peacetime, aa they would be able to start military operations without undertaking the slightest noticeable mobilization measures prior to the beginning of armed
conflict. It Is fully possible that these views are reflected; in the aggressive plans of the Command of the Anglo-Amorlean Bloc. We have many facts which Indicate that this Command, utilizing numerous bases and the territories of the countries dependent on the USA and England, is striving to deploy In advance tbe necessary groupinga of forces and means in the appropriate areas and in the theaters of military operations, from where they plan toar against the countries of the Socialist Camp.
Let us pause briefly on the problems which were worked on in the rear area exercises. These exercises took In all the European theaters of military operations. Aa already noted, in these exercises the existing system for supplying the armed forces of NATO with materiel was checked and tho abilities of Bloc member-countries to independently support their troops assigned to NATO wore studied.
The following principles were applied aa the basis for organizing, mate rial-technical support in the exercise. Each member-country of NATO was responsiblemateriel, technical, and medical support' of its troops and determined independently the types and quantities of the materiel necessary for the support of combat operations. The commanders of the Allied troops were charged with the responsibility for distribution and .use of the material-technical supplies allocated to their Jurisdiction, for making upogether with the corresponding national authorities) for material-technical supplies, and for the fulfillment of these requisitions by the national authorities and by the NATO high command. The commanders of the national formations were -rosponslbile for the materiel, technical and medical support* of the troops .under their subordination.
Rear support of American and English ground troops vbb accomplished through zones of communication, which passed through tbe territories of Frame, FRO, Belgium, and Holland and were .the connecting link between the USA, Great Britain and the zones of combat operations in the Central European Theater of Military Operations. In the elms of(pert of.one sentence missing)by rear uniteectors, tbe base area (bazovyy ucbaatok) and the forward area (peredovoy uchastok) within the confines of which were located depots of various designations, rear units and establishments. The command for supplying atomic and missile veapona to the American ground troops, was situated in thezone; it supplied these types of weapons to all atomic support units, including units assigned under the commands of other NATO
Motor transport waa chiefly used for delivery of supplies; fuel and lubricants were delivered by pipe lines and brought up in tank trucks and RR tank car 8. Special attention in the exercise was devoted to questions of rapid delivery of supplies from ports located on the French coast to depots in the zone of combat operations.
hole, the system of organization of material-technical support of ground troops in the exercise was characterized by r'. extreme complexity; this was caused by the fact that the governmentsommands of eadh NATO member-country were responsible'/for. supporting their troops with essential supplies, as well as by the differences in the organization of supply of the national formations and troops assigned to the jurisdiction of the NATO Command. One of the vulnerable points in this system is the great extension of the lines of communication. It is sufficient to point out that the depth of tbe zones of communications of the American and English troops, without counting the depth of the combat operation zones, was morem. This forces the command to subdividento sectors, which in turn complicates the organization of delivery and supply.
There were certain unusual features in the operational calculations of the norms used in the exercise for material-technical supply of the West German ground troops, which consisted of the fact that to facilitate tbe formulation of estimates, all types of. reserves of material-technical supplies were calculated oh tbe basis of unitverage norms of supply for one man, expressed in kilograms. Food, clothing, engineer equipment, construction materials, POL, communications equipment and other items were planned in weight units per man.
Tbe method of calculating .losses deserves attention. Losses of personnel and combat materiel were determined by taking into account the place of the large unit in the operational formation (mestaperativnom postroyenli) and the degree of intensity of combat operations. For the first seven days ^of war .these .losses were estimated approximately as follows: 1 percent; atomic artillery, guided missiles and free rockets, and combat0 percent; tactical aviation combatnd air defense aircraft 3 percent (taking into account repairs of damagedtomicercent; conventional0 percent;ercent.
Characteristically, losses of personnel, armament, and combat materiel during the first day of warimes higher than the average daily losses for the seven days of the war.
The questions worked on in the naval exercise vere basically those of defense of communications and control of"aerchant shipnina during the first days of the war. The staffs of the allied naval and air forces on the Atlantic and in the zone of the English Channel, the staffs of the naval forces in the European theaters of military operations, and also merchant marine enterprises of -tha NATO member-countries took part in this training exercise.
In the design of the exercise "it was planned tbat the main efforts of the NATO naval forces during the first days of the war be concentrated on the annihilation of nuclear missile weapons, airfields and submarine bases In the northwestern and southern areas of ORANGE territory, and on the defenaetof ccmmunicationa lineB in the Atlantic and in the Mediterranean. Prior to the beginning of combat operations mobilization measures were carried out in the naval forces and in the merchant fleet, specific tasks of the allied naval forces in different areas were defined, the dispersion of the forces and weapons of the fleet was provided for, material-technical support and' the evacuation of bases and pdrte wereentralized directorate of shipping was created, convoys were formed and other measures were carried out.
It waa coneidered that with the beginning of militaryignificant part of the NATO naval bases, ports and airfields in Western Europe and in North America was destroyed or was put out of commissionrolonged periodesult of-ORANGE nuclear strikes, andart of the reserves of different types of supplies on hand at the beginning of the war in depots of the European memberrCOuntr4.es of NATO waa wiped .out. In thla connection, the NATO Command planned to organize loading^ unloading work in small harbors, in roadsteads and In unequipped sectors of the coast, although this broughtecrease in shipping turnover (sudooborot)hortage of coasting vessels.
According to the plan of the exercise command, the principal threat to the shipping of NATO member-countries waa created by ORANGE eubmarinea, deployed along communications lines In the Atlantic and in the Mediterranean Sea, as well as by their
aviation, which along with carrying out attacks against ports and ships at sea, layed mines in coastal communications lines and in the English Channel, the Bay of Biscay and the Mediterranean Sea. In these circumstances, the defense of naval communications was organizedonal principle, in accordance with whichfor the security of merchant navigation within the boundariesheater or region rested on the corresponding NATO naval commander. The guarding and defense of individual vessels which had not yet been broughtonvoy were organized only in areas of most intensive navigation with the use of antisubmarine vessels and aircraft for this purpose, as well as of aircraft carrier antisubmarine hunter-killer groups. With defense of naval communications lines organized in-this manner,'the NATO Command calculates that the communications lines will not be seriously disrupted at the beginning of the war.
. The exercise shows that the NATO Command is devoting great attention to insuring uninterrupted merchant navigationuture war.
We have examined the most important features of the exercise of the allied armed forcea of the aggressive NATO Bloc, SIDE STEP, and the basic problems which were worked on ln this exercise. As can be seen, the exerciseany-sided one, in which many practical problems of preparation and conduct of war in Europe were tested. ertain degree, the exercise reflects the official viejte of the command of the Anglo-American Bloc- on the nature and methods ofuture aggressive war against the countries of the Socialist Camp. (
Special significance is attached to the advance lanlerrentatlon of mobilization measures to bringing the armed forces to combat readiness" to their deployment in operational formations, and to supplying them with all the essential means of support. The leaders of the Anglo-American Bloc are evidently not certain of the fact that the war unleashed by them will end as quickly as they wish. For this reason they are looking for methods of insuring the readiness of their armed forces evenar which may be of long duration (last two words uncertain).
In the plans for waging the war the main reliance is placed on the use of nuclear weapons and on the carrying outuclear offensive, with the aid of which it is calculated to drastically
change the correlation of forces In their favor and, it is hoped, to give the ground troops the possibility of conducting offensive operations. Among the means of using nuclear weapons, side by side with aviation great importance is attached to missiles of operational-tactical designation. At the same time, atomic /barrel/ artillery is widely used as In the past. arge role is also assigned to the ground troops, who are given the mission of exploiting the resultsuclear offensive for carrying military operations, as may be Judged from certain available information, onto the territory of the fioviet Union.
On the whole, exercise SIDE STEP testifies to the aggressive nature of the NATO military preparations, which are openly directed against the Soviet Union and the other countries of the Socialist Camp. It is well to bear in mind, however, that the military preparations of NATO reflected in exercise SIDE STEP do not exhaust all the aggressive plans of the Anglo-American Bloc. As is known. In the future war which they are 'feverishly preparing against the USSR, the militaristic circles of this bloc place principal reliance on the strategic means of nucleartrategic aviation, intercontinental missiles, missiles of intermediate range, and the aircraft carrier and missile carrier assault fleet. With the aid of these means of armed conflict they aim to solve the main problemsuture nuclear war.
All this obligates our command personnel1 to study thoroughly the experience of the training exercises of the probable enemy, to analyze more deeply all the measures carried out by them on the preparation end unleashingew war against the Soviet Union and the other countries of the Socialist Camp, and to take this into account in the preparation of our armed forces and in the working out of methods of thwarting the aggressive adventures of the NATO leaders.Original document.