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The Russian Air Campaign in Syria: A Preliminary Analysis

Descriptive Note:

Technical Report

Corporate Author:

Center for Naval Analyses Arlington United States

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In this CNA Occasional Paper, Anton Lavrov, a noted Russian expert on military air operations, examines the successes and failures of Russias air operation in Syria. He identifies the key structural changes and capability upgrades that made the operation possible. The operation allowed the Russian military to test new equipment and to rotate personnel through the theater of operations in order to gain battle experience. As it continued, the force became more effective, as its leaders learned how to operate in a battle environment for the first time in almost 30 years. The Russian Aerospace Forces actions in the conflict increased the combat effectiveness of Russias small contingent of forces in Syria and allowed government forces to attain success on the ground. The conduct of the operation can be used as a means of understanding the capabilities and tactics that the force may be expected to use in future operations.

Subject Categories:

  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

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