To make things worse, Gen. Mark Milley told the Senate, we have become dependent on huge headquarters with lots of highly detectable electronics that make them “nothing but a big target.”And then this.
We are outgunned on the ground by Russia, our No. 1 threat, said Gen. Milley, with other “great power adversaries” (i.e. China) catching up. The huge headquarters and logistics “tail” the US Army grew in Afghanistan and Iraq is a particularly tempting target for Russian-style massed artillery.
The Russian artillery in particular has more weapons with more range than its US Army counterpart. Milley is concerned by the Russians’ skillful combination of electronic warfare to detect a target, drones to nail down its position, and then using massed artillery to wipe it out.Jesus.
In 15 years of counterinsurgency operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, American headquarters and logistical bases have swelled. In particular, wireless networks blossomed and their transmissions would act as a neon red “look here!” to a technologically savvy enemy. So when Sen. McCain and his fellow senators asked about oversized headquarters, their focus was on the fiscal cost, but Gen. Milley had another potential cost in mind.
“If you were to deploy a brigade or a division,” Milley said, “the on-the-ground footprint of that headquarters is very large [and] you’re emanating a variety of electronic signals from radios and all these computers and everything else that we have….We’ve seen in the Ukraine they [the Russians] can acquire the electronic signal very quickly, fly unmanned aerial vehicles over there, acquire the target, and they’ll mass artillery on you — so you’ll be dead.”
In future warfare, he warned, “large ‘tails’ are going to result in significant amounts of casualties and potentially… the loss of a battle, a campaign or even a war.”
I have never really taken a serious look at Russian (and now Chinese) ground based electronic warfare as being a threat. I focused only on the stuff that went boom.
Additionally, I took it as a matter of faith that we had bases covered because our airborne electronic warfare bubbas would neutralize them.
I should have turned to on this issue when we heard that the F-35 would be the electronic attack platform of choice into the future. But did you catch the second paragraph that I outlined? What he's concerned about is the Crimea/Ukraine fight that we all witnessed. Again, I didn't concentrate on the electronic warfare element of that fight but the use of drones (of all sizes) in combination with heavy artillery to obliterate Ukrainian forces obviously made an impression on the Army Chief.
We might be in a bit of trouble folks (or this could be a naked money grab). More to come.