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This is the outline notes for the lecture on Soviet concepts for maskirovka presented for the U. S. Army.

This is basic type of combat support measures

It is a complex of measures doen with the aim of confusion of the enemy taken in time and space and mission.

The confusion of the enemy on the commanders plan the structure of forces and means especially on the rocket and nuclear forces and the level of location and capability and readiness and quantity and situation And also character of their operations, operational character of maneuver etc. various forces and rear service targets

Measures are done in peacetime as well as in wartime They their capability is to provide surprise they increase the effectiveness of combat operations and the retention of combat effectiveness of the forces. They also raise the capability of ground, air and naval forces

Maskirovka has three levels of strategic, operational, and tactical classification by character scale and missions

Strategic maskirovka 'This is conducted on the basis of the decision of the high command or the general staff or the command in a TVD.

1 - Strategic maskirovka has he following elements

- these are done to support secrecy concentrated on these missions, secrecy of preparation for operations and strategic movements and also to deceive the enemy on the number and separate actions of the armed forces and the concept of operations and intentions

Conducted by forces and forces of the high command and the forces and mens participating in strategic operations. These are planned by the general staff and the TVD command

2 -Operational maskirovka

- conducted on basis of decision of command of front or naval fleet

If an army operates on a separate direction then the decision of the army commander can be the basis for maskirovka plans

Operational maskirovka has the basic aim of secrecy of preparations for operations from the enemy

In normal conditions operational maskirovka is conducted on the basis of the front commander's decision.

Army only fulfills missions that are specified in the front plan. The missions are designated for the army to fulfill. In some unusual situations the army may be told to expand the measures in accordance with the front plan In other words the army may work out implementing measures but only in unusual situations. Usually it will develop measures.

In the plan the missions of the army are spelled and on the basis of these mission the army fulfills its own functions

If the army on its own conducts measures, these would not be fully effective and the enemy would see through the situation.

The front has wide depth and width so it does not depend on the strategic plan so much. The front can be relatively independent. But army has to be coordinated within the front plan.

The front does not need to reveal the essence of the maskirovka in order to accomplish. The army just does as told in this situation.

Tactical maskirovka

Secrecy demonstrations, imitations, and disinformation

on the basis of these they conduct maskirovka actions

System conducted by units and sub units and formations and independent targets to have secrecy before movement, quantity, positions and intentions, locations also uses maskirovka capabilities of weather and light and locations, terrain, rain and all local conditions. This uses maskirovka capacity of the location itself conditions of limited visibility and night

General principles - means of maskirovka as a combat support measure

Maskirovka is combat support measures closely associated with combat action to support and facilitate conduct of missions to insure achievement of aims. Have to take series of measures not combat but support combat others -like recon, protection, etc.

So maskirovka has three major points

to conceal, deceive, and hamper - Conceal is a counter recon action to protect against, Deceive is an active action to influence enemy have to do something to con have to do active and passive

To hamper enemy selection is to confuse enemy on important targets to hamper selection of main targets to fire at where is main grouping where is main targets etc.

Maskirovka insures undetected preparation for war and offensive. At high level it is country preparation for war, at lower level it is preparation for operation

Given the aims there are series of measures to be taken to achieve the aims

measures listed

disperse and undetected positioning - dispersion using cover - use of camouflage - properties of terrain. a traditional measure of maskirovka

list on vgraph (The vgraphs are in the text at maskrovka.

use of terrain properties

This is simplest and oldest way of maskirovka - not always possible because sometimes troops are in open areas without much cover and concealment - if possible first thing troops do is use terrain then if not possible use artificial means. this is first method

Sometimes the operational requirements will be in conflict with the maskirovka requirements - sometimes the area best for cover is not on axis of attack - the principle is that maskirovka is a measure to support combat so maskirovka is always subject to the requirements of operational planning can't change plan for sake of maskirovka. When commander makes decision the characteristics of terrain are evaluated as part of estimate of situation. If terrain is so bad that it can influence the conduct of operation it must be taken in consideration. but once plan is taken can't change forsake of maskirovka.

Use of of darkness and bad weather can be used effectively at tactical level but at operational level then local use of terrain and weather is fine but hard to use as a whole for the army and front at operational level. Sometimes maskirovka level is only effective at tactical level but not at operational level. Sometimes you know where enemy division is even if you don't know where the regiments are. On the other hand at the operational level actions conducted by forces to deceive the enemy a complex action conducted over a period of time will deceive while tactical level is short in time and space

So there are guidelines for maskirovka


four - variety -timeliness - continuity - persuasiveness

Idea is that variety kind of maskirovka is dangerous because once enemy knows it will know so maskirovka must be various and imaginative and not standard use different measures to convince enemy from different directions that you try to impart

Timeliness at tactical level is mater of hours - at what time you should do what. If do something before appropriate time it may reveal things - to convince enemy that troops are moving at certain direction have to do things at right time so enemy will think it is right in context.

When troops deploy there and enemy detects that where the enemy are then if you conduct separate movement is not as effective as if you did it at right time when enemy were moving. Enemy sees deception action - more effective as part of the general action.

Continuity to be effective must continue and conduct things constantly no gaps

Type of actions must look real and be convincing if put guns in open without camouflage and expect enemy to take it they will know it is novel and see though - it have to put also some camouflage and engineer work - conduct in a way to give enemy an impression to convince it is real. Once enemy sees it is not real it will compromise all maskirovka

The other thing associated with terrain is dispersion

Dispersion is old method of maskirovka that provides more capability and possibilities to use terrain. If it takes larger area 60 sq km the it will have certain capability - if it takes 200 sq km area you multiply its capability - the more disperse troops the more capability have to use camougflage characteristics of terrain.

Reduction of time on engineer preparation - then do that to do so much engineer work when terrain good

Complicate enemy recon in a wider area makes enemy recon more difficult. Easier for enemy when you are in smaller area.

When we have terrain with characteristics that provide cover and concealment but if this is not possible perhaps no natural cover or not enough. Therefore a number of artificial means are developed to help when natural not enough -some of these are organic to troops and some are improvised

Paint is common artificial means - It is for combat and other vehicles and other items like airfields and buildings etc.

Usually paint vehicles in peacetime depending on area of operation - paint in different colors if in areas other than areas where they were planned to be used - must change the color for stationary objects normally painted in peacetime if you paint in peacetime it is waste of resources only paint when war comes use brown and green depending on type of terrain add percentage of different colors paint used to merge object into background of terrain

Clothing means

overalls etc.

Other artificial means - materials covers put together number of cover pieces to fit the requirement - time to use is 5 to 10 minutes can be put together easily

Vertical camouflage - communication trench can be cut in different parts so enemy can't see continuity of trench cover parts with the screens by this way protect it from ground observation if commo trench is going to depth can cut it by the use of screeds. It changes the shape and conceals - The screens put of very simple frames that can be disassembled and moved the screen is made of cloth can be put up - In some cases use local material like bushes with the screens to make it more similar to the ground

Road screens put on side of road in exposed areas and when roads are coming over a hill and areas not covered by vegetation.

Camouflage fences

Individual means used for soldiers - most common is a frame with different covers and branches open it and put it on ground to protect individual soldier it looks like a fan sloping is to cover objects located beside a cliff or building makes a lean to to cover the vehicles etc. right next to the building

Distorting does not have standard size

Specialized sets for specific objects - individuals special covers for machine guns or artillery pieces prepared ahead

Specialized sets

Use of smoke

Purpose one of the very effective means important usages to blind conceal and deceive

also other properties attached such protection against thermal radiation of nuclear burst - radiation can't penetrate - degrade munitions that depend on guidance

Use of smoke screens only effective when used at proper place and time when direction of wind is planned.

Distance should be such that it should not interfere with normal action of own troops - should not be so limited that it instead of covering it makes it more distinct. Time is should be a time when some important action is to be conducted or to deceive the enemy about movement - if move of 2nd echelon to move use smoke in wrong place to make enemy think it is some where else or when second echelon is moving use when 2nd echelon moves out of covered area into open area - place such that when use it should not be only in front of it so they will move out of it too soon. If done right it is very effective against enemy and reduces casualties

They have estimates on number of casualties that can be reduced

Kinds of smoke producing means

We had table of capability of smoke generators attached to vehicles so they can create it themselves without waiting for engineers to come and do it. It is more expendient and easier

Three types of smoke screen

by purpose for blinding, camouflaging, and decoying

Use smoke against enemy observation - use on target if use to protect yourself - use near yourself blinding more effective by blind observation post you don't have to cover own troops but if sure you are blinding all observation posts. smoke screen can be used at night too when enemy uses illumination enemy - ATGM best is to blind it. However if there are many then have to cover own forces

Cover own troops and activities and positions area covered at least 5 times greater in size cover company at 500 meters so the screen is 5 times to cover individual tank or gun position not a whole unit of unit at 3 -5 km can not do it not possible to cover unit at this object not at center

Deceptive smoke just to make enemy think attack is in different place - used in river crossing to confuse enemy about real area for river crossing

Use half in areas where no crossing taking place

Smoke grenade from tank used purely defense and to cover the tank to move and as passive chance to with a whole company or platoon this would create a screen but for individual tanks it is to just cover the tank - aircraft - delivered by helicopter and aircraft from helicopter can put smoke pots on ground quickly and lay 10 km rapidly -from fixed with use dispenser container that explodes on impact. when want to use very thick and screen along terrain wider area then airforce can do it quickly depends on availability

In front lines use other more effective methods - easier air delivered can be at greater depth or on landings - it is harder for air to concentrate on a small area. - can use air to blind direct firing weapons gun positions and artillery op.

Can use smoke mines in an ambush and raid for recon - in depth of own area it is more effective to use smoke generators by engineers rather than shells - have to use dummy positions and actions etc. - to use dummy actions certain things to consider have to do it in a way to deceive the enemy and not yourself.

VG requirements for dummy

Must be used in areas where it is tactical sound if firing position is not in range it won't make sense.

If put 122 mm right on FEBA also not right

The regiment has a frontage of 5 km in that area the RAG will be in one area but there are many other areas at same depth that you could put a model of the guns to show that the position is in different area.

It must be right size and dimension to show that there is a T54 tank have to use right size however for purposes of deceiving aerial recon height can be reduced by 30% and still be effective.

The decoy must be also camouflaged to conceal defence in construction but not well enough to really hide it

It must also conduct actions from time to time - unit will occupy the area and show activity and make noise and produce signal communications change the pattern of tracks the next day.

Engineer units are responsible for providing materials that are assembled in the area they are prefabricated in kits - at lower echelons combat engineer used at higher echelon the maskirovka Bn is used.

Soviets used smoke in Afghanistan to cover attack and it sometimes was like tear gas too. -used from helicopters

Afghans used camouflage and decoys very well too

Signal security

To deceive enemy and cover own commo

To cover signal from enemy use radio silence best newly arrived units can be covered. can cover build up of forces. -reduce radio in area of main attack and increase it in other areas more important than radio silence active measures are more effective that passive measures. with active measures conduct continuous action to influence the enemy it is better in addition to radio silence along with heavy activity in the supporting area can deceive when combined with other measures

Can detect unit from type of communication - different for different units or operators

One task is to seek for these kinds of signs in your own forces to eliminate them

Dummy traffic usual temporary for operation had norms for sending messages on how long they were to reduce time on air.

Radio communication maskirovka based on reduction of information and reduced time on air

Use simple cipher and code simple map codes - have table on one side letters and other numbers table contains common sentences and phrases. Can change number of a square also for coordinates on maps. Numbers on maps reversed to increase to south instead of north or change number of one part of grid or change the vertical from Greenwich to something else. Instead of going west to east they go east to west, or make changes often

Enemy will be using electronic means for detection effective when other side is using radio and in the reverse. can disinform enemy by use of radios so they are in combination to conceal activities as well as deceive

Can use specific level and shortest rate use short wave at high level use different antennas that will increase range in one direction and not another.

At tactical level better to use short range radios.

Hydroacoustic recon over water surfaces cover noise to cover submarine etc. Use different types of material to degrade sonar systems. Have dummy targets too.

Anti heat masking against infra red detection if have tank with hot engine even covered by foliage infrared recon will detect. Unnecessary use of engines avoided or cool down surfaces like water etc.

Sound counter equipment especially at tactical. Sound masking is important to cover and conceal all sounds that represent some specific activity. Especially in offensive action will come from direct contact with enemy.

Sound curtain camouflage screen is to cover one noise by another make a louder and heavier noise depending on duration of sound

Light masking

One also can use fires in dummy areas or other light to make dummy positions look real.

Radar camouflage

One important area is movement of troops

Movement is critical because it is conducted in columns and columns are long and can be detected by recon - offensive operation large part of action is movements in offensive covering movement is one of main objectives

To conceal movement there are number of actions

driving along roads use covered roads

bypass cities

move at night

use VHF radios of traffic control

in addition dummy movement - deceptive movement - conduct also mixture of dummy equipment attach dummy to vehicle by cable to pull it during night can disassemble to another direction and use it there sometimes pushed by personnel or use real troops and move back and forth

Commander is responsible for maskirovka as combat support measure

He issues instructions on maskirovka on his basis and higher echelon the staff organizes it

Main officers are operational staff and rear staff and engineer and other staff officers