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LUCASWILLEN05

Ukraine Rules of Engagement

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What do we consider as being typical ROE in Ukraine?

 

Obviously Russians prbably won't bother anyway. For Ukraine they are defending their own country (unless fighting in Russian Seperatist areas) so theyare likely to have some interest in minimising civillian casualties.

 

For NATO units ROE might well be stricter, certainly in the opening days and weeks of the war. NATO might be unwilling to use artillery or air against civillian occupied area and would want to avoid damaging structures such as schools, hospitals, power stations, churches and government buildings. It is quite possible that, later in he war NATO ROE will change bbecomiing more or less restrictive.

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This  is one of the things that could bring some intresting varaity to the scenarios i think...

 

Having some scenarios with very strikt ROE...Preventing the player from blowing up everthing they see...

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This  is one of the things that could bring some intresting varaity to the scenarios i think...

 

Having some scenarios with very strikt ROE...Preventing the player from blowing up everthing they see...

Definately for NATO players. As with CMSF a scenario designer can set a Preserve condition for anobjective. For example you need to Preserve tat twn from damage. He could set further preserve objectives in the town, say fr a school or a hospitl. And to reflect the importance of thse objectives they could be worth a lot of points. But the gamer might be frced t balance his preserve terrain objectives with other objectives he is required to meet. Which might be a big problem.

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"Obviously Russians won't bother with ROE"

Nice...

 

Perhaps an inelegant way of saying it, but probably not a million miles from the truth.

 

A better way would be to say the Russians are likely to use "standard" wartime RoE, i.e. shoot it if it is or could be hostile, don't worry overly about collateral damage (obviously they aren't going to gratuitously shell hospitals!), rather than "kill all the things!!!!"

 

I would expect any NATO force to be similarly hamstrung as they were in Afghanistan/Iraq, i.e. only shoot it if it is confirmed hostile, don't bomb anywhere that is likely to cause non-trivial collateral damage, even if it increases risk friendly troops on the ground.

 

How long NATO would hold to principles as casualties mount (and how long their stomach for the fight would last), now that's the million dollar question....

Edited by Flying Penguin

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NATO ROE will likely be a lot less restrictive than folks are giving it credit for.  Some things might be on restricted target lists like, national treasures/things important to Ukraine's functionality as a country level industrial locations, but anything else would likely be fair game.   Even then the restricted sort of targets likely would be "do not bomb without confirmation of targets of military nature" vs "do not bomb, even if it's crawling with Russians!" sort of ROE.  In a full spectrum sort of conflict there's a much higher expectation of damage, and a much higher value on destruction of enemy forces.

 

Also worth noting that NATO would be in the Ukraine at the permission of the Ukrainian government, and likely with no small amount of popular support from ethnic Ukrainians (as the separatist movement is top to bottom ethnic Russian outside of the actual Russian passport holders within).  People will be upset the local church did not survive the fight, but they will be happier they're no longer about to become part of the people's republic of Russiastan or whatever it calls itself these days.  This underwrites a much more aggressive military targeting behavior.  

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"Obviously Russians won't bother with ROE"

Nice...

honestly i think if Russia were to go to war formally with Ukraine, neither side would be concerned with any ROE. It would be a fight for survival.

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Preserving infrastructure outside the normal conventions of war (e.g: Preserve this place of worship if not defended by the enemy) would go out the window in a heartbeat even in a limited full spectrum conflict. Don't fool yourselves. The UA is already conducting strikes that are hitting what they consider to be their own civilians because separatists are in striking distance. Collateral is brutal, lamentable, and frequent.

 

NATO and Russia would preserve their own forces in a full spectrum conflict far before they considered preserving the backdrop. NATO wouldn't go 'any further' out of its way to do so than Russia would if **** well and truly hit the fan. Try not to demonize/stereotype either side. The missions in Shockforce people are alluding to that have preserve conditions were either (1) not fighting conventional forces or (2) put you in command of countries whose constitutions severely limit their military (such as Germany). There's a reason why the US campaign in Shock Force had very few preserve objectives, in fact, I don't recall any.

 

 

 

NATO ROE will likely be a lot less restrictive than folks are giving it credit for.  Some things might be on restricted target lists like, national treasures/things important to Ukraine's functionality as a country level industrial locations, but anything else would likely be fair game.   Even then the restricted sort of targets likely would be "do not bomb without confirmation of targets of military nature" vs "do not bomb, even if it's crawling with Russians!" sort of ROE.  In a full spectrum sort of conflict there's a much higher expectation of damage, and a much higher value on destruction of enemy forces.

 

 

+1

Edited by Rinaldi

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Much of the fighting right now is taking place in none evacuated places...Is it not ?

 

Having lots and lots of civilians in the battle-area ought to put some restrictions on the ROE one would Think......

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I remember being in Grade school and watching Cruise missiles fly down the streets of Baghdad.

 

As I recall, Baghdad wasn't an evacuated area; yet there it was, surgical and non surgical ordinance hammering targets and potentially endangering civilians. 2003 was one of the last conventional combats I hope I'll ever see in my lifetime, in addition to the Russian victory in Georgia in 2008. In both instances, built up areas often were close, or hugging, points of strategic or tactical value. So, no, it wouldn't restrict ROE very greatly in fully conventional warfare. High tempo operations put premiums on preservation of momentum and forces, not buildings and civilians. Its a fact, one may find that a sad fact, but I would do the same if I was in the Commander's shoes. My first priority is the preservation of my own forces. It would be no different in what Black Sea is trying to illustrate.

Edited by Rinaldi

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Well, from what I've seen, neither Ukraine nor Russia care much for civilian casualties. If there's a military target that is worth shelling, they will do so, doesn't matter if it's in the middle of a town or not, and they don't use precision munitions.

 

 

 

I remember being in Grade school and watching Cruise missiles fly down the streets of Baghdad.

 

As I recall, Baghdad wasn't an evacuated area; yet there it was, surgical and non surgical ordinance hammering targets and potentially endangering civilians. 2003 was one of the last conventional combats I hope I'll ever see in my lifetime, in addition to the Russian victory in Georgia in 2008. In both instances, built up areas often were close, or hugging, points of strategic or tactical value. So, no, it wouldn't restrict ROE very greatly in fully conventional warfare. High tempo operations put premiums on preservation of momentum and forces, not buildings and civilians. Its a fact, one may find that a sad fact, but I would do the same if I was in the Commander's shoes. My first priority is the preservation of my own forces. It would be no different in what Black Sea is trying to illustrate.

 

 

I could be wrong, but I was always under the impression that in urban areas they used precision strikes to minimize collateral damage, no?

Edited by BlackAlpha

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Well, from what I've seen, neither Ukraine nor Russia care much for civilian casualties. If there's a military target that is worth shelling, they will do so, doesn't matter if it's in the middle of a town or not, and they don't use precision munitions.

Exactly

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I could be wrong, but I was always under the impression that in urban areas they used precision strikes to minimize collateral damage, no?

 

Mostly.  You don't really expect civilians to leave the urban areas you're operating in, what you really want them to do is find a closet in the center of their house or something, take some food and water, and stay out of the way until its all over.  Most military forces won't target things like houses until it's clearly being used for military purposes so it's a pretty reasonable safety measure.  Care will be taken to avoid hitting those sorts of residential/non-military buildings so long as there's no military use of those buildings.

 

That said once it's obvious the apartment building has an AT-14 team on the roof, or the local church has a suspicious amount of antennas hanging off of it and a BMP-2K parked outside, it's JDAM time.  

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NATO ROE will likely be a lot less restrictive than folks are giving it credit for.  Some things might be on restricted target lists like, national treasures/things important to Ukraine's functionality as a country level industrial locations, but anything else would likely be fair game.   Even then the restricted sort of targets likely would be "do not bomb without confirmation of targets of military nature" vs "do not bomb, even if it's crawling with Russians!" sort of ROE.  In a full spectrum sort of conflict there's a much higher expectation of damage, and a much higher value on destruction of enemy forces.

 

Also worth noting that NATO would be in the Ukraine at the permission of the Ukrainian government, and likely with no small amount of popular support from ethnic Ukrainians (as the separatist movement is top to bottom ethnic Russian outside of the actual Russian passport holders within).  People will be upset the local church did not survive the fight, but they will be happier they're no longer about to become part of the people's republic of Russiastan or whatever it calls itself these days.  This underwrites a much more aggressive military targeting behavior.  

 

Probably NATO would aim to avoid targetting specific targets such as hospitals, schools and, obviously nuclear power staions.They would probably try to avoid a large civillian death toll.But, s yu say, in a large scale conventional war like ths ROE would be condsderably laxer than COIN operations in Iraq/Afghanisrtan,

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Much of the fighting right now is taking place in none evacuated places...Is it not ?

 

Having lots and lots of civilians in the battle-area ought to put some restrictions on the ROE one would Think......

That would suggesrt Russian and Ukranian attitudes would be considerably laxer than NATO even if NATO ROE were more relaxed thn elsewhere

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Most military forces won't target things like houses until it's clearly being used for military purposes so it's a pretty reasonable safety measure.  Care will be taken to avoid hitting those sorts of residential/non-military buildings so long as there's no military use of those buildings.

 

 

This is sort of what i ment...

 

If a scenario was designed with a briefing stating that the current ROE prohibits opening fire on buildings unless they are clearly identified as hostile possitions (that would mean enemy units have been spotted in those Buildings).

 

Would that be somewhat realistic in this setting ?

 

The current SOP for most players as i understand it is to suppress as many possitions as possible before advancing in an urban setting...Spotted enemies or not...

 

This kind of restriction would make things a bit different...

 

I understand that it will be somewhat difficult in game terms  to 'punish' the player if he decides to use preemtive areafire anyway but if those ROE restrictions where mentined in the briefing it would be up to the player if he wanted to 'cheat' or not...

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I remember that scene in band of brothers , in Holland. There's a german tank waiting in ambush and easy company warns the british tank commander that there is a tank around the corner of the house. Just shoot at that wall and you'll have a clear shot at him without endangering yourself. The British tank commander's answer was:" my orders are clear, no unnecessary destruction of property" .. That's in the middle of the biggest military conflict ever !

Edited by antaress73

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Would that be somewhat realistic in this setting ?

 

If we're looking at a Army unit about to assault a town full of Russian regulars, no one is going to care about private property.  

 

Simple as that.  I got my knuckles rapped for being too soft during one of our scenerios at Captain's Career Course.  I went out of my way to Iraq the situation, planning to keep the enemy occupied police compound intact, etc etc.  My instructor just leaned back and asked if I knew the building was full of bad folks (which for the purposes of the scenario, it was 100% full of bad dudes) why didn't I just JDAM the building?

 

Recent COIN operations has given a really skewed impression of ROEs.  In a real shooting war Soldier's lives will always take precedence over how many holes the village has at the end of the day.  You'd really have to go above and beyond to get prosecuted for ROE violations (shooting up suspicious looking buildings?  No one is going to say a word, better safe than sorry.  Announcing "HEY WATCH THIS!" before shooting a canister round into a gas station?  Better hope it was secretly full of "separatists") 

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In a real shooting war Soldier's lives will always take precedence over how many holes the village has at the end of the day.  You'd really have to go above and beyond to get prosecuted for ROE violations (shooting up suspicious looking buildings?  No one is going to say a word, better safe than sorry.  Announcing "HEY WATCH THIS!" before shooting a canister round into a gas station?  Better hope it was secretly full of "separatists") 

 

Isnt destroying civillian property always a matter of proportionality? If the military advantage justifies the collateral damage, you are free to destroy the building. If doesnt, you are not. To give an extreme example: theoretically the US military could have ended the Fallujah uprising in 2004 by nuking the city. However, they didnt do so because there were less destructive means available to accomplish the task. The military advantage of vapourizing 3000 militants did not justify killing 350000 civillians. On the other hand, to give another extreme example, Cold War doctrine dictated that tactical nuclear weapons were to be used on the advancing soviet spearheads in West Germany, causing the deaths of thousands of civillians and irradianting the country for decades. This would have been acceptable though because there would not have been any less destructive means available to stop the Red Armys advance.

 

(on a side note: i know that those examples are greatly simplified - i dont want to discuss them, they are just examples to point out the concept of proportionality).

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Recent COIN operations has given a really skewed impression of ROEs.  In a real shooting war Soldier's lives will always take precedence over how many holes the village has at the end of the day.  You'd really have to go above and beyond to get prosecuted for ROE violations (shooting up suspicious looking buildings?  No one is going to say a word, better safe than sorry.  Announcing "HEY WATCH THIS!" before shooting a canister round into a gas station?  Better hope it was secretly full of "separatists") 

 

The question is, what is a real shooting war? And do "real shooting wars" even exist nowadays? Most military operations today are embedded in a highly complex politcal and public opinion landscape, where a few minutes of video on YouTube can make or break public and parliamentary support for military action.

 

I don't think the distinction between hypothetical "real wars" and the actual wars the West has been fighting for the last 20 years is realistic. Even the Russian army isn't really fighting its own wars nowadays, relying on hybrid war and proxies to do their dirty work. I don't think we will see one of these "real wars" for quite some time, it's just too costly nowadays, even for autocratic regimes like Russia. And that's why the Scenario of CMBS will probably remain fictional. Hopefully.

Edited by Der Zeitgeist

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If we're looking at a Army unit about to assault a town full of Russian regulars, no one is going to care about private property.  

 

Simple as that.  I got my knuckles rapped for being too soft during one of our scenerios at Captain's Career Course.  I went out of my way to Iraq the situation, planning to keep the enemy occupied police compound intact, etc etc.  My instructor just leaned back and asked if I knew the building was full of bad folks (which for the purposes of the scenario, it was 100% full of bad dudes) why didn't I just JDAM the building?

 

Recent COIN operations has given a really skewed impression of ROEs.  In a real shooting war Soldier's lives will always take precedence over how many holes the village has at the end of the day.  You'd really have to go above and beyond to get prosecuted for ROE violations (shooting up suspicious looking buildings?  No one is going to say a word, better safe than sorry.  Announcing "HEY WATCH THIS!" before shooting a canister round into a gas station?  Better hope it was secretly full of "separatists") 

 

What if it had been a hospital or a school? Or perhaps a church or a mosque?  Does this make much difference in a high intensity conflict as opposed to COIN?

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The question is, what is a real shooting war? And do "real shooting wars" even exist nowadays? Most military operations today are embedded in a highly complex politcal and public opinion landscape, where a few minutes of video on YouTube can make or break public and parliamentary support for military action.

 

I don't think the distinction between hypothetical "real wars" and the actual wars the West has been fighting for the last 20 years is realistic. Even the Russian army isn't really fighting its own wars nowadays, relying on hybrid war and proxies to do their dirty work. I don't think we will see one of these "real wars" for quite some time, it's just too costly nowadays, even for autocratic regimes like Russia. And that's why the Scenario of CMBS will probably remain fictional. Hopefully.

 

Arguably yes shooting wars do exist these days. We most often fight COIN conflicts at the moment, hence your commets regarding the complex military/civillian landscape. But from time to time we fight traditional conventional conflicts. The 1991 and he 2003 Iraq War better fit the definition of conventional conflics although of course the latter may be more accurately described as a hybrid war given the irregular nature of the Fedayeen fighters. And the current war with ISIS? Is this a conventionl war or is it COIN? And is the actual fighting in Ukraine a conventional war or is it an insurgency? Or is it both?

 

Perhaps hybrid wars mixing regular and insurgent capabilities are likely and, given the blurred lines perhaps that better defines todays' conflicts

 

Could we see a fully conventonal war like the one portrayed here, the 1991 Gulf War or the war e expected in Central Europe during the 1980s. Perhaps wars of this sort are rare but they stlll happen from time to time so we should not rule out the possibility of one happening in the near future given the right conditions.

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What if it had been a hospital or a school? Or perhaps a church or a mosque?  Does this make much difference in a high intensity conflict as opposed to COIN?

 

Rules of land warfare say that a protected site loses its protective status once it is used for military purposes.  If there's Russians in thar monastery-orphanage-hospital complex, it's free to be bombed to pieces.

 

If there was some value to the site, like beyond it just being a hospital, it was an internationally recognized center for research into curing death or something, there would be some plan to deal with it.  Easiest option would be simply to bypass the site all together, and once it's surrounded start conducting tactical callouts, or blasting them with heavy metal music or something.  

 

The way you can lose victory points for destroying a "protected" location is proper, in that it'd be a real shame if someone dusted the church, and it'll look bad on CNN, but as long as the answer to the question "was it full of Russians" was "yes" life goes on.   It's important to ask as the scenario designer if the town church of whatever small town is the halfway point on their map is something that will matter in a war that's likely killing a few hundred people daily.  To that end having seen some of the point values attached to "preserve" objectives, I think folks have gotten a little overboard.

 

ROE is really not something that is designed to keep commanders from committing violence against things, it exists to give a practical progression from "I am not shooting" to "it's time to dust off and nuke this place from orbit, it's the only way to be sure"

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Isnt destroying civillian property always a matter of proportionality? If the military advantage justifies the collateral damage, you are free to destroy the building. If doesnt, you are not. To give an extreme example: theoretically the US military could have ended the Fallujah uprising in 2004 by nuking the city. However, they didnt do so because there were less destructive means available to accomplish the task. The military advantage of vapourizing 3000 militants did not justify killing 350000 civillians. On the other hand, to give another extreme example, Cold War doctrine dictated that tactical nuclear weapons were to be used on the advancing soviet spearheads in West Germany, causing the deaths of thousands of civillians and irradianting the country for decades. This would have been acceptable though because there would not have been any less destructive means available to stop the Red Armys advance.

 

(on a side note: i know that those examples are greatly simplified - i dont want to discuss them, they are just examples to point out the concept of proportionality).

Actually the damage to Fallujah was severe and started with an artillery barrage. Most of the civilians had been evacuated and it was pretty much a free fire zone. Despite that the U.S. still suffered 95 dead and 560 wounded. I believe there was an estimated 800 civilian casualties. You do not want to fight to take city if you can avoid it.

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Rules of land warfare say that a protected site loses its protective status once it is used for military purposes.  If there's Russians in thar monastery-orphanage-hospital complex, it's free to be bombed to pieces.

 

If there was some value to the site, like beyond it just being a hospital, it was an internationally recognized center for research into curing death or something, there would be some plan to deal with it.  Easiest option would be simply to bypass the site all together, and once it's surrounded start conducting tactical callouts, or blasting them with heavy metal music or something.  

 

The way you can lose victory points for destroying a "protected" location is proper, in that it'd be a real shame if someone dusted the church, and it'll look bad on CNN, but as long as the answer to the question "was it full of Russians" was "yes" life goes on.   It's important to ask as the scenario designer if the town church of whatever small town is the halfway point on their map is something that will matter in a war that's likely killing a few hundred people daily.  To that end having seen some of the point values attached to "preserve" objectives, I think folks have gotten a little overboard.

 

ROE is really not something that is designed to keep commanders from committing violence against things, it exists to give a practical progression from "I am not shooting" to "it's time to dust off and nuke this place from orbit, it's the only way to be sure"

 

Yes. That would look bad on CNN. And as for what Russia Today would be saying I shudder to hink. Assuming it had not been taken off the air on the outbreak of war of course! :-)

 

Orbital bombardment? Really? :-)

Edited by LUCASWILLEN05

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