What kind of military equipment Moscow managed to provide Caracas in case of war?
The world froze in anticipation of the US Navy aircraft carrier squadrons in the Caribbean, F-35 fighters and B-2 bombers in the skies over Venezuela, the US Marine Corps on the Atlantic coast. This is the old-fashioned scenario of the “expansion of democracy”, which Washington is now imposing on Caracas. There will be no war – in its classical sense. According to new technologies, support of the opposition, its armament, involvement of neighboring states in hostilities, elimination of the current government (as a rule, disloyal of the USA), assistance in the final collapse of the economy. And only then, having achieved a state of civil war in the country, launching missile strikes, preferably as part of some coalition. This they have already demonstrated in Yugoslavia, Iraq, Libya, Syria.
So the Venezuelan army, whose relative small size compared to its neighbors (123 thousand soldiers and 220 thousand national militias) compensated for with modern weapons and training, will not have to fight with the Americans. But with the same Brazil and Colombia, provoked by the United States, they may well be drawn into frontier battles, at the level of attacks by sabotage groups.
The Venezuelan army, in addition to direct combat capabilities, is also a powerful tool of political influence in the country. It is no coincidence that opposition leader Juan Guaido hurried to prematurely declare support for the demonstrators by the military, while he himself is trying to hold illegal meetings with generals. President Nicolas Maduro also relies on the army and believes in its loyalty and loyalty to the oath, like his predecessor, Hugo Chavez, who kept the military at a height.
In Moscow, it is no coincidence that one of the streets (albeit small ones) was named after the Venezuelan president – Hugo Chavez was not only a true friend of Russia, but also a good … merchant. Each of his visits ended with the signing of large contracts for the supply of weapons and military equipment. Even if loans were purchased for weapons, the Kremlin definitely liked its bet on rearming its army with Russian samples. Chavez didn’t realize his idea to the end, didn’t have time, but Maduro picked up the banner and continued military contacts with Moscow. By the way, “a person with an uncertain status,” Guaido has already managed to declare that he is going to revise Russian contracts for the supply of arms. The street in his honor will be called except in Washington.
Of course, not all weapons and military equipment of the Venezuelan army are entirely Russian-made, but they are the most modern in the Ground Forces, the Air Force and, of course, in the air defense. Back in 2006, AK-103 Kalashnikov assault rifles were supplied in the amount of about 100 thousand “barrels”. The composition of the armored troops added 92 Russian tanks T-72B1 B, which form the basis of the armored fist. 123 modernized BMP-3Ms with enhanced armor protection, a modern fire control system, a turbocharged engine and the Arena-E active defense system seem to be the best infantry fighting vehicles of the Venezuelan army. The armored personnel carriers of the Russian production BTR-80A, delivered in the amount of 114 units, are ideally suited for local climatic and geographical conditions and are superior in their qualities to all that they had before. In the self-propelled cannon artillery there are fifty 152-mm self-propelled guns Msta-S, and the reactive one is represented by 24 MLRS Grad (122 mm) and 12 MLRS Smerch (300 mm).
In social networks, they organized a spontaneous search for a helper for the taiga recluse Agafya Lykova – she has been living in Khakassia for several decades.
Despite the fact that there are about forty American helicopters of transport and patrol mission in the combat helicopter fleet, the strike group of army aviation consists of ten Russian Mi-35M2, 16 multipurpose Mi-17V5 and three heavy transport Mi-26s. The pride of Venezuela’s air force is 23 Russian multi-role fighter Su-30MK2V, which were delivered to this country in 2006–08, but still surpass the American F-16. The arrival of Russian strategic bombers Tu-160, accompanied by heavy military-transport An-124 and long-range Il-62M, warmly received in Caracas, but it was rather a friendly visit. Well, or “adjustment” to the new airfields based. In any case, soon the aircraft of the Russian VKS returned home.
There are no Russian combat ships in the country’s naval forces, and the navy itself is very small – 3 missile frigates (Italy), 2 torpedo submarines (Germany) and several dozen patrol and artillery boats of the near-sea zone.
Venezuela’s air defense system is not only the pride of the local anti-aircraft gunners, but also the Russian specialists, who helped organize the in-depth defense system, which is not so easy to penetrate. The Russian technology also played its role, primarily the S-300VM long-range anti-aircraft missile systems, capable of effectively fighting aerodynamic targets at distances of up to 250 kilometers (detection range — up to 300 km) and at altitudes from 25 to 30 kilometers. There are two battalions of such missiles, which include about thirty launchers. The second air defense line is the Buk-M2E air defense missile system (12 complexes) and the upgraded Pecher-2M S-125 air defense missile system (24 systems), which control the airspace at a distance of 30-50 kilometers. The closest approaches to the protected objects cover 12 Tor-M1 anti-aircraft missile systems and several thousand Igla-S portable anti-aircraft missile systems, which have repeatedly demonstrated their effectiveness in many armed conflicts.
- The Venezuelan army got its“ toothiness ”precisely because of the supply of Russian weapons, including the latter, which markedly increased its combat capability, – said military expert Vladislav Shurygin.
- At the same time, it should be noted that the rearmament has not yet ended here and is somewhere in the middle of the road, so it’s too early to talk about the perfection of the Armed Forces of Venezuela. Therefore, in the event of a violent conflict in their territory, they will have to face a number of difficulties. We do not take into account the imminent clash with the United States, here the loss of the official Caracas will be in all respects.
However, if in Washington they still rely on another adventure with the “overthrow of the regime”, it will take a long time to prepare for this operation. To take Venezuela with one shot just will not work, it means there will be long preparations, involvement of third countries in the conflict, including neighboring ones. It means there will be time for the Venezuelan army and its allies, including Russia and China, who are unlikely to swallow such disregard on the part of the United States. However, this may bring the beginning of the third world war, whose premonition now hangs as the last straw on the tip of the bayonet, ready to fall into a puddle of war to cause a storm.