Was the Soviet Union military powerful as the U.S during the cold war?
- ?Lv 67 years agoFavorite Answer
The Russian Bear is a paper tiger. It is far more than merely outdated; so much of it has been both poorly designed, poorly manufactured, and poorly maintained that only a small fraction of it works at all. The Russian soldiers are very brave - but bravery will not replace poor equipment, poor training, and poor food and living conditions in a 21st century battlefield.
That so-called "Russian naval squadron" sent to Venezuela a few years ago was in fact one aging cruiser “Peter the Great,” the anti-submarine destroyer “Admiral Chabanenko,” and two repair ships to keep them afloat, with a combined crew of 1600. They were afraid to send any more - they didn't have enough seaworthy repair ships to keep any more afloat on so long a journey.
The Iraqi army was equipped and trained with Russia's best - and the American forces and their allies went through them like a hot knife through butter. Iraqi casualties totaled over 350,0000, against coalition casualties that totaled about 1800. The US Marines attack on Kuwait City was meant to be a feint - they were expected to be hung up on Iraqi fortifications, pinning down those forces with their relatively light forces and 1960-s era M60 tanks. When the defenses unexpectedly crumpled the Marines went on in - and took Kuwait City on their own.
Russia committed a significant portion of their army and tactical air forces to suppressing some lightly-armed banditos in Chechnya. They not only failed two attempts, they bankrupted their forces ammunition and spare-parts reserves in the process.
The reason Vova & Dima are willing to reduce strategic nukes - and demanding a huge reduction in our delivery systems - is because more than 95% or the Russian delivery systems are already piles of rusty junk - unfit for anything but the scrap heap.
Everyone was shaking in their boots about the TU-160 "Blackjack" supersonic bombers Russia has been sending to Cuba and Venezuela. No one is saying anything about the number of them in the air at any one time - they don't have the parts to fly more than about a dozen of them.
In 2007 Russia sold 35 Mig-29 "Fulcrum" fighters to Algeria - but when they started delivering them in 2008 Algeria demanded they be returned and refunded. The reason was "inferior quality" - among other things they had used engines when new ones were ordered and paid for.
I sat in a living room in Bendery, Moldova with a Russian family a few years back. I listened to the uncle - retired from the Soviet Navy as Капитан 2-го ранга (Captain 2nd Rank - similar to our O-5 Commander) tell me stories about his years out in the Red Banner Northern Fleet, while we all drank his excellent homemade wine. He looked me in the eyes and said that every man on those ships knew: the day their government sent them to war against the navy of the USA and NATO was the day that every one of them - ALL of them! - would die. They knew they had zero chance - it would be a slaughter of epic proportions. But they would still go - because they were brave men.
Both strategic nuclear forces and conventional forces are junk - and have been for decades. The entire Cold War was one big maskirovka - a masquerade.
- JCKLv 67 years ago
America was stronger from a technological standpoint but the Soviet Union had more soldiers. The Soviet Union technology was not as advanced or reliable as the Americans weapons. The Soviets air force was plagued with engine problems and their ships had many problems as well. If you count all Soviet Republics and the satellite states as part of the USSR they in fact had a bigger military and a bigger population.
- Anonymous7 years ago
The USSR had land mass connections to Europe and Asia. The US did not. And that made the USSR exceedingly more powerful.
The US did have bases in key European and Asian positions, but in a really "hot" war, they could not have held off a full communist onslaught. Geepers, it takes months to move US ships here or troops there - just look at IRAQ and Afghanistan.
They did not take advantage of it, because they did not want such total destruction. They said their hope for the future was to be socialism rather than communism.
- tuffyLv 77 years ago
The number of thermonuclear weapons held by both the Soviet Union and the U.S. made over-all power of either side meaningless. Just one mistake during then Cuban Missile Crisis (1962) would have ended civilization.
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- Anonymous7 years ago
I think they were equally strong, they worked on quantities rather than quality. China was very much the same, but now both are rapidly catching up with the US. Some of their hi-tech stuff are vastly improved, and with the US cutting back with their military budgets both Russia and China are increasing their spending.
The US has the highest defence budget in the world just to keep ahead of them
- John de WittLv 77 years ago
No, but considering that they had enough of a nuclear arsenal to produce Armageddon, it's really a moot point.
- HiLv 77 years ago
- 7 years ago
The US was more powerful because we invented an atomic bomb first and went to the moon first.
- Anonymous7 years ago
Both terrifying, I hope no more.
- AnonymousLv 77 years ago
No. Not even close.