The Russian Way of War

In February 2013, General Valery Gerasimov, Chief of the Russian General Staff, published “The Value of Science Is in the Foresight: New Challenges Demand Rethinking the Forms and Methods of Carrying out Combat Operations” in the Russian military trade journal Voyenno-Promyshlennyy Kurier. In this article, Gerasimov lays out his perspective—and the prevalent view in Russian security circles—of the recent past, present, and expected future of warfare.

This article has taken great prominence in the Euro-Atlantic community’s thinking about Russian “Strategy”, particularly as the basis for Russia’s annexation of Crimea and Russian action in Eastern Ukraine and Syria. But a more detailed understanding of the debate and thinking underway in the Russian military and defence community is necessary. This lecture offers a more detailed examination of both General Gerasimov and the broader Russian view of the changing character of war, not least as illustrated in the context of his other, subsequent publications and their implications for our understanding of Russian activity

Chuck Bartles is a Russian analyst at the Foreign Military Studies Office, in Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. His specific research areas include Russian and Central Asian military force structure; modernization; tactics; officer and enlisted professional development; and Russian military cartography and map symbology. Chuck is also a Major and space operations officer in the United States Army Reserve that commands a United States Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) army reserve element in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He has deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq, and has served as a security assistance officer at U.S. embassies in Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, and Kazakhstan. Chuck has a bachelor’s degree in Russian from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, a master’s degree in Russian and Eastern European Studies from the University of Kansas, a certificate in Geospatial Information Systems from the University of Missouri-Kansas City, and is now a PhD student at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. His most recent book, The Russian Way of War: Force Structure, Tactics, and the Modernization of the Russian Ground Forces, was published in 2017.

A sandwich lunch will be served at 12.40.