The geopolitical forecasts «STRATFOR» in Russia

The geopolitical forecasts «STRATFOR» in Russia


The geopolitical forecasts «STRATFOR» in Russia.


«STRATFOR» is a  private intelligence and research company in US. «STRATFOR» is also called a private CIA. George Friedman, an American political scientist, founded this firm in 1996. He is a head of the company so far. «STRATFOR» is a consultative company of the United States administration and management of large international companies.


In spite of such a representative facade, the article of George Friedman "The eternal struggle of Russia: geostrategic reference" has raised doubts of the competence of the author on the subject.


The essence of this article Friedman is the policy of Moscovia is offensive, simply because it does not have a good defensive option.


This is not a  grounded thesis of George Friedman!


I will come back and discuss this controversial thesis later in detail but  now let me analyze more obvious mistake of the head of intelligence and analytic company «STRATFOR». What is the essence of this error?


Friedman writes about the current strategy of the Russian Empire in his article:


"The attack on Siberia is not in its interest since there is nothing to capture as the territory of the region is enormous and there are severe weather conditions. In addition, the attack on the part of Siberia to the rest of Russia is impossible because of the Urals. "


Hmm, "... an attack on the part of Siberia to the rest of Russia is impossible because of the Urals." Is it really?


It seems that the officers and analysts of  «STRATFOR» have big problems with the knowledge of history, geography and logic. Let us see  the facts of the well-known examples of the military history and geography.


The fact number one.


Moskovia's troops headed by Ataman Yermak crossed the Ural Mountains without any problems  in autumn in the 16th century. They carried all their supplies, weapons, and everything else, dragging heavy hauling boats across the Ural Mountains. Ermak crossed the Ural mountains on the boats. After that Ermak was not very tired and was able to conquer all of Western Siberia. "Ermak ... conqueror of Western Siberia (1582-1585), the hero of the folk songs" (Great Encyclopedia of Cyril and Methodius).


The fact number two.


Admiral Kolchak's troops launched an attack  from Siberia through the Ural Mountains to the east, with a view to reach the Middle Volga in the spring of 1919. The Siberian Army of General Guides advanced from area of Perm - Nizhny Tagil, the Western Army of General Khanzhin advanced from the district of Sverdlovsk - Verhneuralsk. Kolchak's troops advanced to 400-500 km and he reached the Volga. Withstood the onslaught of Kolchak's forces, the army counterattacked, overcame the Ural Mountains and Siberia was  released. "The Soviet troops launched an offensive to liberate the Urals and Siberia  mastering the strategic initiative firmly”(Soviet Military Encyclopedia p. 320 V. 4).


As you can see, a lot of  troops throughout the year crossed the Ural Mountains several times.


The fact number three.


The Ural mountains are not very high. The average elevation is about 500 meters above sea level. These mountains are like hills over 300 km between Chelyabinsk and Nizhny Tagil. The greatest height is 1100 meters in the south and 750 meters in the north. The highest peak isYamantau in the middle and in the southern part of the Ural Mountains. The height is 1,640 meters above sea level. For comparison, the highest peak of Kazakh hills (1566 m) is just 74 meters below the top of the Ural. As you can see, the difference is a few tens of meters in height, but none of the military analysts do not consider Kazakh low hills as impassable mountain system either in theory or in practice.


The fact number four.


The Carpathian Mountains (the altitude is up to 2655 m), a mountain range, is far more powerful than the Ural Mountains where military operations were planned and carried out. Marshal I.H.Bagramyan is writing about  Carpathian passes in 1940: "... the acquired group, made up of various military vehicles and vehicles  to send in autumn to all more or less passable routes  to ensure in practice the possibility of overcome their tanks, vehicles, tractors, animal transport and pack animals. "In August, 1944, part of the Carpathians advancing Soviet Guards Army 4. (Soviet Military Encyclopedia. V.8, p.465 map).


The fact number five.


In August 1945, the troops of the Transbaikal Front were held a winning Khingano-Mukden operation. Tanks of 6th Guards Tank Army were advancing across the mountain ridge called Hinggan. There are some heights of Hinggan: 2034m, 1949m, 1749m. "On the 12 of August the  6th Guards of the Tank Army, advancing to a depth of more than 400 km, overcame Hinggan and entered the Manchurian plain...". (Soviet Military Encyclopedia, vol.8, p.378).


The fact number six.


In August 1968 the Soviet tank armies marched into Czechoslovakia through the Carpathians, Tatras, and the Sudetenland without any problems.


The  fact number seven.


In the 70-80 years of the last century, I served in the divisions cover the border with China as an officer. These divisions were based on the fortified areas, mountain passes closed by the turn of the Altai-Torbagatay-Junggar Alatau. The heights of these ridges are 4506m., 3134m., 4464m. respectively. The Soviet leadership feared the onset of the Chinese army from these areas, the onset of the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.


Thus, these facts show that the Ural Mountains is not a serious obstacle in the military sense. Claims  of George Friedman that the "attack on the part of Siberia to the rest of Russia is impossible because of the Urals" is untrue. Probably, analysts of «STRATFOR» have difficulty in assessing the maps and photos of the Ural mountains, exploring the historical documents on fighting various military units in the highlands.


Let us consider the main points of Friedman article.

"A fundamental characteristic of Russia is its inability to protect themselves."

"Unlike most states, which can defend themselves, central Russia is limited to the region of the medieval Grand Duchy of Moscow. There are no rivers, oceans, swamps or mountains, which would be designated natural boundaries.

"In order to cope with these vulnerabilities Russia has been expanded in three phases.


During the first phase Russia was expanding not toward the invasion corridors to establish buffer zones, but rather away from them to build strongholds. In the end of the XV century, during the reign of Ivan III, Russia is still a bit advanced to the West, staking out a Pripyat (Pinsk) marshes that separated Moscow from Kiev. But the main direction of the expansion of Russia in this period has come from the north, the Arctic, and the north-east to the Urals.


The next phase of expansion was much more aggressive and risky. In the middle of the XVI century, during the reign of Ivan IV, Russia finally popped up to block the Mongolian route raids. Russia moved to the south and east, deep in the wilderness, and did not stop until it reached the east of the Urals and the Caspian Sea and the Caucasus Mountains in the south. Part of this expansion was the seizure of Russia for a few strategic areas, including Astrakhan on the Caspian Sea, the land of the Tatars, nomadic longtime enemy, and Grozny, which was soon converted into a military outpost at the foot of the Caucasus. "


The third phase of the expansion was aimed at combating the latest trend, where the attack came, the West. In the XVIII century, during the reign of Peter the Great and Catherine the Great, Russia annexed its borders to the west, by annexing the Baltic lands of the state, thereby ensuring the safety of the Russian side in the Baltic Sea. Moscovia and the Russian kingdom were became the Russian Empire.


It is necessary, first of all, to remember why Russia was expanding.


After the collision with the Mongols, Russia had two Russian strategic interests. Thus it was necessary to ensure its western borders by absorbing Lithuania and secure as possible to the west on the North European Plain.


The second strategic interest was to ensure the safety of the south-eastern borders of Russia against possible threats from the steppes via absorption of Central Asia, as well as Ukraine.


Moscovia could not withstand the impact from any direction, not to mention the simultaneous impact from the both sides.


“The politics of Moscovia was offensive, simply because it did not have a good defensive options."


"A fundamental characteristic of Russia is its inability to defend itself", writes Friedman.


There are some geographical factors, like supporting his thesis about the impossibility of Russia to protect themselves.


"Unlike most states, which are sufficiently defensible, Central Russia is limited to the region of the medieval Grand Duchy of Moscow. There are no rivers, oceans, swamps or mountains, which would be designated as natural boundaries and protection is depended on the relatively inhospitable climate and forests."


That's so, no more and no less. "Russia can not protect itself",  George Friedman, geopolitical analyst says.


We can not agree with this statement because this statement is against to the actual facts.


According to the history Moscovia has successfully defended their land, its people and its capital during 800 years. Russia has been able to defend itself, and it is confirmed by the very fact of its existence for many centuries. According to Friedman Moscovian people are very unhappy, they got very uncomfortable for the defense of the territory. They are very clever and they began to attack thousands of miles in all directions capturing the neighboring lands.



It turned out that Moscovians were 'forced'  to win all of Siberia and the whole Far East, all of Central Asia, the Caucasus, Ukraine, Poland, the Baltic States and Finland just for the defense of Moscow and the adjacent territories.

Расширение России 

Источник карты сайт


This explanation is rather primitive.


To defend Moscow and the surrounding land it does not need to capture Chukotka and Alaska for 10,000 miles.


To defend Moscow and the surrounding land it does not need to create a huge ocean  of nuclear fleet.


To defend Moscow and the surrounding land it does not need to create a huge nuclear missile potential and clutter up 15% of the land of the planet.


To defend Moscow and the surrounding land it does not need to create a huge military bases in Cuba and Vietnam.


To defend Moscow and the surrounding land it does not need to keep the tank armies in Europe for 45 years.


These facts clearly show us that Friedman did not understand the true cause of the Moscovia's expansion. The true reason for the expansion of ethnic groups has been found and explained by Doctor of Historical Sciences L. Gumilev who found that young ethnic group a has been always expanding its territory actively.


"The phase of the ethnogenesis recovery is always associated with the expansion" (Lev Gumilev, "Ethnogenesis and the Biosphere").


To conquer the foreign territory it is needed to have very passionary warriors, the warriors who capable to act in terms of shortages of material resources and time. It is easier to keep the area and master it. It  is required the tribesmen who are less passionary.


All this vigorous activity has lead to loss of the passionary individuals and ethnicity, it become less aggressive, less active and less successful in all aspects of life.


График территориальной экспансии России

This is a chart of territorial expansion of Russia. The study of "territorial and political expansion of Russia»,


График изменения уровня пассионарности российского суперэтноса во времени

The schedule of changes in the level of passionarnost of the Russian superethnos. The graph is a level of passionarnost of the Russian superethnos time. It is made on the basis of data from the doctoral thesis L.Gumilev "Ethnogenesis and the Biosphere."


The comparison of these graphs show the relationship of  level of passionarnost in ethnicity and area conquered by this ethnic group clearly. The level of the passionarnost is increased with growth of the area of land  controlled by this ethnic group, while the decline of the passionarnost, respectively,  is reducing the area under the control of the territory.


This pattern is typical of all the ethnic groups of the world. Aging ethnicity is losing the gains of  ancestors.


"Any increase in the phenomenon is become odious, diligence is subjected to ridicule, intellectual joy causes fury. The style in art is a reduction,  the original works of science are superseded by the compilations, in public life is ...  corrupted. "(L. Gumilev," Ethnogenesis and the Biosphere ").


The loss of the passionarnost of Moscovia and Russia  is the main cause of all Russian external and internal problems.


Kolesnikov S.B., June 2014.


Related Links:

1 L.N. Gumilev. "Ethnogenesis and the Biosphere." Leningrad, 1974.

2 Zbigniew Brzezinski. "The Grand Chessboard." Washington, DC, 1997.

3 S.Kolesnikov. "The theory of ethnogenesis of Kolesnikov."

4 S.Kolesnikov. "Supernovae and ethnogenesis.", 2003.

5 "Soviet Military Encyclopedia." USSR Ministry of Defense Military Publishing, 1980.

6 "Territorial and political expansion of Russia."

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