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Russia orders first batch of 100 Armata tanks

New Russian tank cleared for series production and service entry.

Alexander Mercouris

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Russia’s Defence Defence Minister Yury Borisov, who is in charge of procurement at the Defence Ministry for the Russian Armed Forces, has now confirmed previous reports – mentioned by The Duran here – that an order has been placed for a first batch of 100 of the new advance Armata tanks, which will enter service with the Russian army before 2020, and perhaps as early as next year.

I have previously discussed Russia’s new Armata tank and why it represents a revolution in tank design here.

The major technical advance the Russians have achieved with the T-14 Armata is that it carries its gun in a fully automated unmanned turret.

The Russians have been considering developing tanks with automated unmanned turrets since the 1970s.  What prevented realisation of the concept before was the lack of robust and reliable visual aids to make up for the loss of observation for the tank crew provided by placing the tank commander and gunner in the turret.  The rapid developments in electronics since the 1970s have however finally made the concept possible, enabling the Russians to develop a tank around the concept.

The chief advantage of automating the turret is that it has been possible to move equipment from inside the tank body into the turret, freeing up internal spaces within the tank body, making it easier to organise and rationalise.

The result is that two completely separate internal spaces have been created inside the tank’s body, one in the forward section and one in the rear section, which can be rearranged to suit different vehicles using the same basic tank body.

This has made it possible to create a whole family of vehicles on the basis of the same tank body.  Thus in the T-14 tank version the space in the forward section is used to house an armoured capsule carrying the tank’s 3 man crew, whilst the space in the rear section is used to house the tank’s engine.  In other vehicles the order is reversed, with the engine moved forward from the rear section to the forward section, freeing the rear section for other uses.

Apart from the T-14 Armata tank the Russians are known to be using the same basic tank body to create an infantry fighting vehicle (designated the T-15), an armoured personnel carrier, various engineering vehicles, and various self-propelled artillery vehicles.

The picture below, whilst not coming from an official Russian source, may give some idea of the appearance of some these vehicles.

armata-family-line1

Alongside the T-14 Armata tank and the T-15 infantry fighting vehicle, the picture shows speculative images of a rocket launcher vehicle, a 152 mm self propelled artillery vehicle which is known to exist under the designation ‘Koalitsiya’, and a possible tank destroyer vehicle using an outsized 152 mm tank gun, which is known to have been developed (the standard gun carried by the T-14 Armata tank has a calibre of 125 mm).

Here is a photograph of the T-14 Armata tank with the armoured crew compartment in the forward section of the vehicle and the engine in the rear section.

t14-armata

Here by comparison is a photograph of the T-15 infantry fighting vehicle, which is armed with a 30 mm cannon and Kornet anti tank missiles in the turret, and which has the engine moved forward to the forward section, freeing the vehicle centre body and rear section to carry an infantry squad, which can exit the vehicle through doors in the vehicle’s rear.

t15

The fact the Russians are able to use a single tank body to develop a whole family of vehicles should simplify manufacturing, ease the logistics chain by providing different vehicles with interchangeable parts, and reduce cost.

In addition automating the turret in the tank version comes with other benefits.  The ability to bring the entire tank crew together in one place inside a heavily armoured capsule in the forward section has made it possible to improve greatly the level of protection afforded to the tank crew as compared with other tanks.  It also makes it easier for the crew to communicate with each other and to work together as a team.

The T-14 Armata tank also comes with a host of other modern features, not all of which have been disclosed and many of which have never been seen in tanks before.  For example it is the first tank designed from the outset to carry its own radar as part of its standard equipment.

This is a modern Active Electronically Scanned (“AESA”) radar of the sort now used by advanced fighter aircraft. Many of the features of the T-14 Armata tank in fact seem to derive ultimately from the military aircraft industry, with the T-14 Armata tank representing a convergence of modern tank and military aircraft technologies.

As with modern military aircraft remotely controlled or drone versions of the T-14 Armata are now being considered, and the already highly automated nature of the design makes that in theory possible.  However the very heavy maintenance requirements of tracked land vehicles means that any drone version of the T-14 Armata will have only limited endurance by comparison with aircraft drones.

A batch of 100 Armata tanks will be enough to equip a tank brigade or regiment.  Some reports suggest that the first operational unit of the Russian army to receive the Armata tank will be the 2nd Guards Tamanskaya Motor Rifle Division located in Russia’s Western Military District.  If so the 100 Armata tanks will probably equip the Tamanskaya Division’s 4th Independent Tank Brigade

The Tamanskaya Division is one of the best known units of the Russian army.   Along with its ‘sister’ Division – the 4th Guards Kantemirovskaya Tank Division – it regularly participates in Red Square Parades, and is a core unit of the 1st Guards Tank Army, which is now being reformed.

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Vlad PufagtinenkoAugustineDrinasPatrick Armstrongfredd Recent comment authors
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DaveH
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DaveH

“A batch of 100 Armata tanks will be enough to equip a tank brigade or regiment. “, I think not. It would equip a battalion.

Patrick Armstrong
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Patrick Armstrong

A battalion is 3 companies, a company is 10 tanks.

Augustine
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Augustine

Depends on each country’s different army doctrine of standard ORBAT. Some countries have tank battalions with 30 tanks, others 40, yet some armies 50 MBTs. Russia has its own different number of units per regiment.

100 Russian Armatas is enough to scare EU NATO armies like Germany down to their pants
😀😁

Drinas
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Drinas

A token number. As much as I support Russia, it is obvious that the Kremlin is not willing to take its defence seriously. They bet everything on diplomacy and their nukes while doing the absolute minimal to sustain conventional forces. This charade-initially they said 2300 Armatas by 2020-the PAK FA still not entering mass production, reducing the new Yasen SSNs..And you have Putin proudly announcing further reductions on the defence budget. Ridiculous.

fredd
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fredd

did you miss FIRST

Augustine
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Augustine

First batch 100 Armatas. Kremlin did not say final batch. Read the report with open eyes. Complex new technology needs time. Oil prices fallen by half. In USA, Trump is trying to avoid expensive F-35. Equipment cost billions in cash. Millions of people are poor hungry in Russia. There are 50 million Americans in daily poverty and hunger with no hope.

Drinas
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Drinas

I am following closely all major defence programmes, partly a hobby, partly a job. 100 as a first batch in a period of 3(!) years for a tank is a very small number. I remind you again that initial plans were 2300 till 2020..Same story with PAK FA and other items. Yes, millions are poor in Russia (as are in the US) but if defence continues to be neglected millions more might well join them . If Russia had a credible and robust force the West would think twice before staging coups in their backyard or constantly taunting them. Truth… Read more »

Augustine
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Augustine

◽I work in defense industry as a rsearcher, I see things from a wide angle of view. Many factors affect weapons procurement and military capacity of any nation. ◽USSR communist style economics destroyed itself and ravaged Russia with poverty and near economic collapse 1970-1980s until Gorbachev the hero saved USSR in the 1990s by ending communism before the republic collapsed economically and financially. ◽Yeltsin, then Putin had to wait for Russian economic recovery in the 2000s by oil prices boom into riches before modernizing the military. Simple common sense by Putin, he knows Russia cannot spend money it did not… Read more »

Vlad Pufagtinenko
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Vlad Pufagtinenko

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Constantinople: Ukrainian Church leader is now uncanonical

October 12 letter proclaims Metropolitan Onuphry as uncanonical and tries to strong-arm him into acquiescing through bribery and force.

Seraphim Hanisch

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The pressure in Ukraine kept ratcheting up over the last few days, with a big revelation today that Patriarch Bartholomew now considers Metropolitan Onuphy “uncanonical.” This news was published on 6 December by a hierarch of the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church (running under the Moscow Patriarchate).

This assessment marks a complete 180-degree turn by the leader of the Orthodox Patriarchate of Constantinople, and it further embitters the split that has developed to quite a major row between this church’s leadership and the Moscow Patriarchate.

OrthoChristian reported this today (we have added emphasis):

A letter of Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople to His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kiev and All Ukraine was published yesterday by a hierarch of the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church, in which the Patriarch informed the Metropolitan that his title and position is, in fact, uncanonical.

This assertion represents a negation of the position held by Pat. Bartholomew himself until April of this year, when the latest stage in the Ukrainian crisis began…

The same letter was independently published by the Greek news agency Romfea today as well.

It is dated October 12, meaning it was written just one day after Constantinople made its historic decision to rehabilitate the Ukrainian schismatics and rescind the 1686 document whereby the Kiev Metropolitanate was transferred to the Russian Orthodox Church, thereby, in Constantinople’s view, taking full control of Ukraine.

In the letter, Pat. Bartholomew informs Met. Onuphry that after the council, currently scheduled for December 15, he will no longer be able to carry his current title of “Metropolitan of Kiev and All Ukraine.”

The Patriarch immediately opens his letter with Constantinople’s newly-developed historical claim about the jurisdictional alignment of Kiev: “You know from history and from indisputable archival documents that the holy Metropolitanate of Kiev has always belonged to the jurisdiction of the Mother Church of Constantinople…”

Constantinople has done an about-face on its position regarding Ukraine in recent months, given that it had previously always recognized the Metropolitan of Kiev and All Ukraine of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate as the sole canonical primate in Ukraine.

…The bulk of the Patriarch’s letter is a rehash of Constantinople’s historical and canonical arguments, which have already been laid out and discussed elsewhere. (See also here and here). Pat. Bartholomew also writes that Constantinople stepped into the Ukrainian ecclesiastical sphere as the Russian Church had not managed to overcome the schisms that have persisted for 30 years.

It should be noted that the schisms began and have persisted precisely as anti-Russian movements and thus the relevant groups refused to accept union with the Russian Church.

Continuing, Pat. Bartholomew informs Met. Onuphry that his position and title are uncanonical:

Addressing you as ‘Your Eminence the Metropolitan of Kiev’ as a form of economia [indulgence/condescension—OC] and mercy, we inform you that after the elections for the primate of the Ukrainian Church by a body that will consist of clergy and laity, you will not be able ecclesiologically and canonically to bear the title of Metropolitan of Kiev, which, in any case, you now bear in violation of the described conditions of the official documents of 1686.

He also entreats Met. Onuphry to “promptly and in a spirit of harmony and unity” participate, with the other hierarchs of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, in the founding council of the new Ukrainian church that Constantinople is planning to create, and in the election of its primate.

The Constantinople head also writes that he “allows” Met. Onuphry to be a candidate for the position of primate.

He further implores Met. Onuphry and the UOC hierarchy to communicate with Philaret Denisenko, the former Metropolitan of Kiev, and Makary Maletich, the heads of the schismatic “Kiev Patriarchate” and the schismatic “Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church” respectively—both of which have been subsumed into Constantinople—but whose canonical condemnations remain in force for the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church.

The hierarchs of the Serbian and Polish Churches have also officially rejected the rehabilitation of the Ukrainian schismatics.

Pat. Bartholomew concludes expressing his confidence that Met. Onuphry will decide to heal the schism through the creation of a new church in Ukraine.

The Ukrainian Orthodox Church under Metropolitan Onuphry’s leadership is recognized as the sole canonical Orthodox jurisdiction in Ukraine by just about every other canonical Orthodox Jurisdiction besides Constantinople. Even NATO member Albania, whose expressed reaction was “both sides are wrong for recent actions” still does not accept the canonicity of the “restored hierarchs.”

In fact, about the only people in this dispute that seem to be in support of the “restored” hierarchs, Filaret and Makary, are President Poroshenko, Patriarch Bartholomew, Filaret and Makary… and NATO.

While this letter was released to the public eye yesterday, the nearly two months that Metropolitan Onuphry has had to comply with it have not been helped in any way by the actions of both the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Ukrainian government.

Priests of the Canonical Church in Ukraine awaiting interrogation by the State authorities

For example, in parallel reports released on December 6th, the government is reportedly accusing canonical priests in Ukraine of treason because they are carrying and distributing a brochure entitled (in English): The Ukrainian Orthodox Church: Relations with the State. The Attitude Towards the Conflict in Donbass and to the Church Schism. Questions and Answers.

In a manner that would do any American liberal proud, these priests are being accused of inciting religious hatred, though really all they are doing is offering an explanation for the situation in Ukraine as it exists.

A further piece also released yesterday notes that the Ukrainian government rehabilitated an old Soviet-style technique of performing “inspections of church artifacts” at the Pochaev Lavra. This move appears to be both intended to intimidate the monastics who are living there now, who are members of the canonical Church, as well as preparation for an expected forcible takeover by the new “united Church” that is under creation. The brotherhood characterized the inspections in this way:

The brotherhood of the Pochaev Lavra previously characterized the state’s actions as communist methods of putting pressure on the monastery and aimed at destroying monasticism.

Commenting on the situation with the Pochaev Lavra, His Eminence Archbishop Clement of Nizhyn and Prilusk, the head of the Ukrainian Church’s Information-Education Department, noted:

This is a formal raiding, because no reserve ever built the Pochaev Lavra, and no Ministry of Culture ever invested a single penny to restoring the Lavra, and the state has done nothing to preserve the Lavra in its modern form. The state destroyed the Lavra, turned it into a psychiatric hospital, a hospital for infectious diseases, and so on—the state has done nothing more. And now it just declares that it all belongs to the state. No one asked the Church, the people that built it. When did the Lavra and the land become state property? They belonged to the Church from time immemorial.

With the massive pressure both geopolitically and ecclesiastically building in Ukraine almost by the day, it is anyone’s guess what will happen next.

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Ukrainian leadership is a party of war, and it will continue as long as they’re in power – Putin

“We care about Ukraine because Ukraine is our neighbor,” Putin said.

RT

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Via RT…


Russia’s President Vladimir Putin has branded the Ukrainian leadership a “party of war” which would continue fueling conflicts while they stay in power, giving the recent Kerch Strait incident as an example.

“When I look at this latest incident in the Black Sea, all what’s happening in Donbass – everything indicates that the current Ukrainian leadership is not interested in resolving this situation at all, especially in a peaceful way,” Putin told reporters during a media conference in the aftermath of the G20 summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

This is a party of war and as long as they stay in power, all such tragedies, all this war will go on.

The Kiev authorities are craving war primarily for two reasons – to rip profits from it, and to blame all their own domestic failures on it and actions of some sort of “aggressors.”

“As they say, for one it’s war, for other – it’s mother. That’s reason number one why the Ukrainian government is not interested in a peaceful resolution of the conflict,” Putin stated.

Second, you can always use war to justify your failures in economy, social policy. You can always blame things on an aggressor.

This approach to statecraft by the Ukrainian authorities deeply concerns Russia’s President. “We care about Ukraine because Ukraine is our neighbor,” Putin said.

Tensions between Russia and Ukraine have been soaring after the incident in the Kerch Strait. Last weekend three Ukrainian Navy ships tried to break through the strait without seeking the proper permission from Russia. Following a tense stand-off and altercation with Russia’s border guard, the vessels were seized and their crews detained over their violation of the country’s border.

While Kiev branded the incident an act of “aggression” on Moscow’s part, Russia believes the whole Kerch affair to be a deliberate “provocation” which allowed Kiev to declare a so-called “partial” martial law ahead of Ukraine’s presidential election.

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When Putin Met Bin Sally

Another G20 handshake for the history books.

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Via Zerohedge


In the annals of handshake photo-ops, we just may have a new winner (much to the delight of oil bulls who are looking at oil treading $50 and contemplating jumping out of the window).

Nothing but sheer joy, delight and friendship…

…but something is missing…

Meanwhile, earlier…

Zoomed in…

And again.

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