Soviet Operational and Tactical Principles
FM 100-2-1—The Soviet Army; Troops, Operations and Tactics, July 1984
The offensive is the basic form of combat action. Only by a resolute offense conducted at a high tempo and to great depth is total destruction of the enemy achieved.
Combat maneuver units must be mobile and capable of rapid movement.
Fire support, command and control, and logistics must be as mobile as maneuver units.
Conduct thorough and continuous reconnais- sance. Find the enemy's weak points.
Perform a thorough estimate of the situation and make timely, analytical decisions. Be realistic. Consider the mission, enemy, your own combat power, terrain. weather and light conditions, and time.
Prepare and plan extensively and in detail.
The planning and conduct of an operation must involve the full coordination and coopera- tion of all commanders involved.
There must be unity of command, a single commander for any operation.
Fully orchestrate all available combat mea~s in a coordinated, cooperative, combined arms effort.
Deceive the enemy. Attack from an unexpected direction at an unexpected time. Use terrain and weather to your advantage.
Strike early with great force. Constantly strive to preempt and dominate the enemy.
Attack the enemy violently and simultaneously throughout his depth. Carry the battle to the enemy rear with swift penetrations by maneuver units, fires, aviation, airborne and heliborne assaults. and by unconventional warfare means.
Be bold and decisive. Seize and hold the initiative.
Prosecute an operation relentlessly, without pause, under all conditions of visibility or NBC contam ination.
Keep the enemy under constant pressure and off balance. Do not allow him to react effectively.
Fully exploit the effects of nuclear or chemical strikes with deep attacks by all available forces.
Whenever possible achieve mass by concen- trated, massed nuclear or nonnuclear fires 2-4 rather than by massing maneuver forces.
If maneuver forces must be massed, do so rapidly. Disperse them as soon as possible after the task has been achieved.
Maneuver first with firepower. Firepower is maneuver.
Maneuver forces should attack the weakest points in enemy defenses. If necessary, create weak points or holes with nuclear or nonnuclear fires. Bypass enemy strongpoints to strike deeply into his rear.
Avoid frontal attacks. Whenever possible strike the enemy in the flanks or rear.
Maintain security of your own flanks and rear.
Maintain sufficient follow-on force to assure achievement of the mission and to deal with contingencies.
Maintain uninterrupted combat support.
Maintain effective, continuous command, control, and communications. Loss of communications leads to loss of control and defeat. Maintain redundant communications at higher levels. Rely on audio and visual signals and well-rehearsed battle drills at lower levels.
Staffs at every level must have the equipment and skills necessary to collect and analyze information quickly and to develop and dissemi- nate orders rapidly based on the commander's decision.
Employ radioelectronic combat to deprive the enemy of effective command and control of his combat forces.
Adhere to the spirit and letter of a plan. If the plan fails, use initiative to accomplish the mission.
Be prepared to react effectively to a rapidly changing battlefield. Develop procedures to deal with numerous contingencies.
Think quickly and be decisive and resourceful in accomplishing the mission.
Conserve fighting strength through the use of combat vehicles with collective NBC protection, dispersal of forces, minimum combat power necessary to accomplish a task, the use of captured enemy equipment, and effective logistics.