Does it make sense for Russia to wage war at sea?

Yes, as promised, we will now bring the two articles together and add some analysis. And the main purpose of this material will be to answer the question: can we in 10 years even think about the fact that our fleets will be able to provide at least minimal resistance if something happens?

In fact, we cannot build as we did under the Soviet Union. Proven. We cannot allocate so much money for the construction of new ships. We can, perhaps, only sound the projectors. All kinds of nuclear destroyers and nuclear aircraft carriers.

But let’s not talk about the sad, let’s talk about the very sad.

Let’s imagine a hypothetical situation in which our potential opponents will cease to be potential, but become real. For example, in Russia there was a military coup and completely different people came to power who are ruling the country now.

On the one hand, there is no particular reason for concern, on the other hand, in such a situation anything can happen.

We will reason reasonably, that is, we will not talk about delivering nuclear strikes. There will be no winners in the last war, so we will leave the nuclear broom for all living things for later.

So, our enemies decided to arrange something like that at our borders. And sirens howled, commanders of all levels and ranks began to open packages and stuff like that.

Let’s start with Baltic.

The political alignment in the region is just fine. We have no allies, with the exception of neutral Finland, which is unlikely to participate in the carnival. But the Finns simply have nothing to participate. Yes, with the help of their minelayers, they will be able to block half of the Gulf of Finland with mines, but this is where the capabilities of the Finnish Navy end.

We also do not take inflatable boats of the Baltics seriously. But then serious games of adult guys begin. Capable of putting the submarine fleet into the sea and covering it with surface ships.


The Poles can exhibit 5 submarines (one our Halibut and four German ones) and 2 frigates of the Oliver Perry type made in the USA.

Everything, let’s say, is not the first freshness.


6 newest submarines, 9 frigates (3 newest Saxony-class), 5 new Braunschweig-class corvettes.

Unfortunately, all equipment (with the exception of two Bremen-class frigates) is very fresh.


Eternal neutrals that breathe unevenly towards us. And our boats are constantly staggering off the Swedish coast.

5 submarines and 11 corvettes.

The state is so-so. Mostly from the last century, with the exception of the five Visby corvettes, which are quite new.


6 German-built submarines, 4 newest frigates of the Fridtjof Nansen class, 6 newest subcorvettes of the Skjeld class.

Frigates are designed specifically for anti-submarine defense.


7 frigates, three of which, of the Yver Huitfeld class, are the newest.


4 submarines and 6 frigates, of which 4 of the type “De Zeven Provinciën” are the newest.

Total: 26 submarines, 28 frigates, 22 corvettes.

What can the Baltic Fleet exhibit in terms of submarine forces and support?

1 ancient Project 956 destroyer, constantly under repair.
2 frigates of project 11540. Not less ancient.
4 corvettes of project 20380. New.
6 small anti-submarine ships of project 1331-M. Also antiquity comes from the 80s of the last century.
2 submarines (1 under repair) of project 877 “Halibut”. Also from the 80s.

What can you say based on these numbers? Well, just that the only function that our “modern” Baltic Fleet can perform is to die heroically. Moreover, this does not even require the British and French, who play not the last violins in the NATO forces. Small-town regionals will cope.

Of course, “Bali” and “Iskander” on the shores can moderate the ardor, but this applies only to surface ships.

As for the submarines, everything is very sad here. And the fact that Alrosa, breathing in incense and living from repair to repair, will be transferred to the Baltic, will not change anything. She will also stand there under repairs.

Black Sea.

It is a little better here than in the Baltic, but just a little bit.


3 frigates, 4 corvettes.

They are Romanian, that is, bought as used and very old.


4 ancient frigates, 2 ancient corvettes.

Bulgaria is generally a difficult country for us today. It is difficult to say where its command will turn, but Bulgaria is a NATO member. So the floating junk obeys orders you know from where.


12 submarines (4 are the latest diesel-electric submarines), 16 frigates, 10 corvettes.

Turkey, no matter how it is fed with gas pipelines, will remain a country that pursues its own policy. And a Russian ship can receive a torpedo from a Turkish submarine in the same way as it received a Su-24 missile.

Russian Black Sea Fleet.

We don’t see any allies here either.

6 submarines of the “Varshavyanka” type (3 of them are under repair).
3 frigates of project 11356 and 2 semi-frigates of project 1135 (1981 and 82 years of construction).
6 small anti-submarine ships of project 1124M. Originally from the 80s, but better than nothing.

And that’s all. In principle, the Baltic submarine can be covered even better than the Black Sea ones. He deliberately kept silent about “Moscow”, this veteran as a cover / opposition to the PL is completely useless.

In general, the Turkish fleet, if desired, will solve all or almost all the tasks of countering our fleet. Simply because it has more submarines and ships to counter our submarines.

Pacific Ocean.

Here, of course, rules the ball US Pacific Fleet.

5 aircraft carriers, 34 destroyers (including both Zamvolts), 12 coastal zone ships, about 40 nuclear submarines and 12 Ticonderoga-class cruisers.


20 submarines, 4 helicopter carriers, 39 destroyers, 6 frigates.

All this is very ambitious for the Japanese and was built recently.

South Korea.

18 submarines, 12 destroyers, 16 frigates, 28 corvettes.

Not the newest building, but impressive in number.


9 multipurpose nuclear submarines, 53 diesel submarines of various years of construction, 31 destroyers, 43 frigates and 56 anti-submarine corvettes.

The PLA aircraft carriers of the PRC do not carry anti-submarine weapons, unlike the American ones.

China in our case is an independent player like Turkey, but if everything is clear with Turkey in terms of which side it will take, then it is completely unrealistic to plan something with China. Yes, the PRC has “graters” both with the United States and with the allies / satellites of the Americans, but this does not mean at all that we can consider the PRC a full-fledged ally. Rather, on the contrary, nothing more than a possible companion, nothing more.

Russian Pacific Fleet.

5 nuclear submarines of project 949A, of which 3 are in service.
4 nuclear submarines of project 971, in service 1.
6 diesel submarines of Project 877 “Halibut”, all in service.
1 diesel submarine of project 636 “Varshavyanka”.

A total of 4 nuclear and 7 diesel submarines.

1 Project 656 destroyer and 1 more under repair. The old ones.
3 large anti-submarine ships of project 1155 and 1 under repair. The old ones.
2 corvettes of project 20380 (two on the way). New.
8 small anti-submarine ships of project 1124. Old.

The missile cruiser of the project 1164, as well as the heavy cruiser of the project 1144, if, after all, another one is refurbished, are not of particular value in this aspect.

For the sake of fairness, it should be said that the anti-submarine capabilities of American cruisers of the Ticonderoga class are not at the highest level.

What’s the bottom line? And in the end, if you remove China from the scene, and it is fair to remove it, then in the event of an aggravation of the confrontation with Japan, behind which the United States is protruding, the Pacific Fleet is no better than the Baltic. Or Black Sea.

The main problem: the ships are still Soviet-built, which have not yet been repaired or modernized properly. They are still not bad for Navy Day parades, but their combat capabilities can be questioned.

Yes, if we carry out general modernization, install new weapons systems, yes, something can be achieved. But cases and mechanisms that are more than 30 years old are still a problem. As well as old communications on ships, and it is clear that the larger the ship, the more difficult it is to carry out the appropriate repairs.

It is clear that it is not numbers that are fighting, people are fighting in the first place. But if you look at the numbers, then any operation of our submarine fleet (and let me remind you that we are talking about the problems of the submarine) is doomed to great difficulties, if not to complete failure.

At least 2 submarines, 4 surface ships and a pack of helicopters will operate against each submarine in the Pacific Ocean. This is minimal. And at the maximum, everything will be even sadder.

All that can be said by looking at the numbers is that we have coastline guard fleets.

This is a fact, dear readers. In addition to strategic missile carriers, all other ships are simply not able to move away from the coastline without damage to themselves, where the Bali, Iskander, airfields with bombers and so on are located.

Yes, perhaps no country in the world is in such an ugly position as we are. The United States and China are able to operate their ships as they please, and we are forced to maintain 4 fleets and a flotilla, of which all, except for the Northern Fleet, are an incapable parody of the fleet.

Yes, I deliberately “ignored” the Northern Fleet. Just because it doesn’t make any sense. No one in the world just pokes into those parts. The game is not worth the candle. Plus the Northern Fleet is still 10 nuclear submarines (and 5 more under repair) and 5 diesel ones. Given the weather and ice conditions, even Americans cannot afford to visit those places often.

And the result is not a very beautiful thing: we can definitely perform only one operation. Demolish the entire world with strategic submarine cruisers. The rest of the tasks such as local non-nuclear wars, countermeasures, coastal defense – alas.

What can I say if the Black Sea Fleet was too tough for the supply of not the largest group of troops in Syria! I had to buy and rent motor ships all over the world, including in Ukraine. And the landing ships that have blown up on the “Syrian Express” are urgently sent for repairs.

About the “feats” and “successful combat work” with half-empty Su-33 fighters of our “aircraft carrier” also want to remain silent.

I started with diesel submarines, continued with nuclear submarines. And now we can conclude that even though we have problems with submarines, there are no less problems above the water.

Even if you strain and eliminate all the problems associated with submarines, the headache will not be much less. Because there is no surface fleet.

Although, of course, submarines can perform most of the tasks without interacting with surface ships. And this is even somehow encouraging.

It remains only to build, renovate, modernize. As they say, start and finish.

In the title of the article, I asked a question. Should we even plan military operations at sea if, in fact, we cannot do anything?

No, we can, of course. Populist statements and utterly false promises about what and when we will have a fleet of the far sea and ocean zone “to show the flag” on the most distant shores. That’s what we can do well.

And the engine for the destroyer – alas. And an air-independent installation for diesel-electric submarines – alas. And so you can collect a lot of points. And we always knew how to throw hats. Now we are demonstrating miracles in this regard. They began to fight in cartoons.

Cartoons about our supernova weapons are, of course, good. But I would like to at least put the old in order and clean the rust. Because tomorrow you will have to go into battle with him. With Soviet weapons. Soviet T-72 tanks, Soviet Su-35 aircraft (which is still a modernized Su-27), Soviet AK-74, Soviet submarines and anti-submarine ships.

And soon it will be 30 years since the Soviet Union was destroyed. And we still hold in our hands a shield and a sword with the mark “Made in the USSR”.

Not noticing that both the shield and the sword have already been pretty much spent with rust …

And the “new”, all this “not having …” – it really does not. Only not the declared analogs, but their physical embodiment in metal.

Otherwise, why do we have to patch up Soviet submarines by hook or by crook? Because the Russian “Ash” costs like two “Boreas”. Even if it is at least three times multipurpose and low-noise, but to cost like two strategic submarine cruisers capable of demolishing half of America with their missiles, “Ash” simply has no right.

Well, or the state guardians responsible for the construction of new boats should not grab that way.

Many readers will say: is it really bad? Okay, let’s think about where we are good in the navy. Under water, above water …

You, in fact, the word …

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