Turkey against Syria: the correlation of forces

Turkey against Syria: the correlation of forces
First days of October brought with dull announcements Near East. It all started with the fact that Turkey had fallen on the ground artillery shells, allegedly issued by Syria. Turks responded to this vsepolnotsennym fire. Over the next couple of days the situation is repeated again: someone with the Syrian countryside produces several shells, then Turkey inflicts fire attack on the positions of Syrian troops. Such a choice target Turks motivated by the fact that impinge on their armed forces can only Syria. Why are guilty or guilty specifically assigned military, not the rebels? The official answer is no, but there are some guesses political nature. Immediately after the artillery «duels» Turkish control broke militant rhetoric towards Damascus. It became a full-scale war threatened if the Syrian military have finished firing Turkey.

Many people believe that all these actions are very similar to the firing of provocation by the Syrian insurgents carried out with specific support Ankara. This version contained numerous statements about caravans Damascus with weapons and ammunition, going through the Turkish-Syrian border. In addition, one should take into account completely trivial fact: Bashar al-Assad administration, despite all the accusations of oppression of «civil liberties», still not gone mind in order to be imposed on a full-scale conflict with one of the states in the region of strongest. And yet, it seems, the shelling of Turkish territories lately will not end if the version of the rebel provocation is true, then it is profitable to continue to fire on Turkey until such time as it does not declare war on Syria and will not help to overthrow the hated Assad. Turkey, in turn, does not cease to express vehement statements in the address of Damascus and has asked NATO to assist her because of the «regular attacks». Union, however, is in no hurry to organize the invasion of Syria, citing a number of complex circumstances for which is seen in Ankara reluctance to promote its political games. Yet, the risk of the outbreak of war, even without the participation of NATO troops remain. Try to compare the forces of Turkey and Syria, and to forecast the probable course and consequences of such conflict.

The total amount of people in the Turkish armed forces exceed half a million. Of these about 150 000 people — civilian civilian workers. Yet, a large number of personnel as needed can be mobilized, reserve about 90 thousand people. About 38 thousand of them — the first stage of the reserve, which can enter into operation within a few days after the respective order. Countless more part of the Turkish armed forces are the Army (NE). Among them is almost four thousand people. The structure has four NE field armies and private Cypriot group. Base ground troops moderately distributed areas of Turkey, with all this, just close to the Syrian border placed housing dating back to the 2nd Field Army. In 3 cases each army, except the 4th, there are armored, mechanized infantry, artillery, etc. Brigade.

Armament NE Turkey quite diverse, both in the country of origin and age. For example, men may use different parts of the German automatic rifle G3, produced under license, and the other — the «native» South American M4A1. At the same time, more new weapons usually goes to Special Forces. The same situation is with the armor. In parts of the Turkish army so far has more than fifteen thousand American M60 tanks in different versions, including and without the help of other modified cars. Most new tanks Turkish ground forces are German Leopard 2A4, the number of which is close to three and a half hectare. To move infantry and fire support in a particular battle, the Turkish army has a huge number of armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles. For example, M113 APCs alone has almost 3,300 pieces, some of these machines are equipped as missile tank destroyers. Followed by a number of armored vehicles family ACV-300, made by and under construction in Turkey. Armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles in this family are available in a decent amount of troops — about 2-thousand units. Finally, in recent years, the Army received about half thousand armored models Akrep, Cobra, Kirpi etc. The above information about the state of small weapons and light armor is also true with regard to the gendarmerie — a separate branch of the armed forces, which is almost some semblance of internal troops.

It should be noted a wide range of missile and rocket weapons, intended use in the Army. Also captured or acquired Russian RPG-7 (according to various estimates, more than 5 thousand pieces) Turkish soldiers have antitank missile systems TOW, ERIX, MILAN, «Kornet-E», «competition», etc. Amounts of these LAW equated several weaves and varies depending on the type. More massive anti-tank weapons in the Turkish army is a one-time HAR-66 grenade launcher — a licensed version of the South American M72 LAW. To protect against attacks from the air motorized infantry and infantry have portable missile launchers FIM-92 Stinger, including the latest versions. Nedavneshnego time before the Turkish army was a certain amount of Russian MANPADS «Igla», but not so long ago, they are quite removed from service.

The total number of field artillery in the armed forces of Turkey exceeds 6100 units, among which there are guns of various types and calibers. Last fluctuate within the limits 60-107 mm in the case of mortars and from 76 mm to 203 guns and howitzers. More massive Turkish army barreled weapons are Howitzer M116, purchased from the United States. Their caliber is 203 millimeters, the total number of these guns — about a hundred and fifty. Self-propelled artillery units represented half tyschami carrying gun with a caliber of 81 mm (self-propelled mortar M125A1) to 203 mm (self-propelled howitzer M110A2). As for the rocket launcher, then the direction Turkey visibly succeeded. Most of its MRL, such as T-22 installation or TOROS 230A, created without the help of others. Yet, in the military and has a certain amount of American and Chinese systems of salvo fire.

Most of antiaircraft weapons — about 2,800 units — is a barreled system. Anti-aircraft guns of different calibers in the main have imported origin: South American setting is M55, German and Swedish Mk.20 Rh202 Cannon office Bofors. The remainder of the flak was carried out in Switzerland at the firm Oerlikon, or Turkey Swiss license. Also barrel anti-aircraft systems have about Turkish NE 250th self-propelled anti-aircraft missile systems and Atilgan Zipkin, carrier rockets Stinger.

In the end, the Army have their own aircraft as four hundred helicopters. Bulk of them — and passenger transport — represented South American UH-60 and UH-1H, also licensed variations Eurocopter Cougar. Noteworthy that in the current time, the Turkish army has only 30-35 attack helicopters. This AH-1P Cobra and AH-1W Super Cobra, manufactured by Bell. For reconnaissance and other similar needs in the Turkish army has about half a hundred drones of its own production.

Subsequent branch — Air Force. According to the gaze of the last few years, particularly on the BBC imposed main shock function. Most likely, specifically Turkish planes inflict the first blow to the Syrian facility in the event of full-scale conflict. In the midst of the rest of this version is confirmed by the composition of aircraft available to the Turkish Air Force. About sixty thousand people personnel maintain and operate 800 aircraft for various purposes. In the structure of the Turkish Air Force has four large formation — Aviation Command. Two of them have their own specific purpose combat aircraft operation, and the remaining two are responsible for personnel training (Training Command in Izmir) and supply management (Logistics Command in Ankara). In addition, in a particular leadership of the Air Staff are separate brigade tanker and transport aircraft.

The basis of the striking power of the Turkish Air Force are South American fighter-bomber F-16C and F-16D. In total, there are about 250 pieces. The second attack aircraft is also the South American F-4 Fantom II later modifications. It should be noted that the number of these aircraft configuration fighter-bombers constantly decreases. Currently, almost all of the available 50-60 «Phantoms» converted into reconnaissance version. Recently, the Air Force will be left about the same amount of F-5 fighters. Special bombers in the Turkish Air Force no. Distant radar detection function currently being provided by a small number of specially finish aircraft CN-235 Spanish production, which also formed the basis for reconnaissance and transport vehicles.

Noteworthy that the Turkish Air Force transport aircraft has about the same «diversity» types, as well as combat, but loses in the general population. For transportation of goods and passengers, there are about 80 types of aircraft following: the already mentioned CN-235, C-130 and C-160. In addition, the Air Force for transport problems have 80th Cougar helicopters and UH-1U.

The main method of aerial reconnaissance in the Turkish Air Force is the introduction of unmanned aerial vehicles. 30-40 5 types of beads purchased abroad, Israel and the United States. In addition, in the coming years will produce a certain amount of TAI Anka UAV its development.

Naval forces. Several centuries ago the Turkish fleet was considered one of the most massive in the world, but now it can not be called so. In addition, far not all equipment can be called Turkish Navy sufficiently modern and contemporary. For instance, the newcomer from 6 Turkish diesel-electric submarines built in Germany for the project 209, began service in the late 80s. With all this she was armed only with torpedoes and / or mines. Eight more new boats, the last of which was commissioned in 2007, is an upcoming development of all of the same German project.

Likewise is the case with frigates and corvettes. So, frigates projects «Yavuz» and «Barbaros» are finalizing the respective German type MEKO-200 and built in the amount of eight pieces. Turkish types «Tepe» and «G» are almost South American «Knox» and «Oliver Hazard Perry.» Three and eight ships used these projects were purchased from the United States. In turn, six corvettes type «B» are acquired from the French ships project D’Estienne d’Orves. We have to admit Turkey tries to regain his own creation of large warships. Since last fall, came into operation the first corvette project MILGEM. Recently, several more will be built similar ships.

Apart from the big ships of the Turkish Navy boats have a huge amount for various purposes. It is about hundreds of missile boats projects Kartal, Yildiz, etc., and 13 patrol boats, 4 types. In the end, the Turkish fleet features 2 dozen minesweepers, 45 hovercraft and several dozen auxiliary vessels.

Naval Aviation Turkey numerous. This 6 patrol aircraft CN-235M Italian and Turkish design assembly and 26 helicopters. Last used for anti-submarine and rescue operations. Park antisubmarine helicopters consists of U.S. helicopters Italian production Agusta AB-204 and AB-212 (Bell 204 license and Bell 212, respectively) are also collected in the U.S. Sikorsky S-70B2. Combat aircraft or helicopters in the Turkish Air Force are missing.

In the end, it is worth saying a few words about the Gendarmerie and the Coast Guard. Formally, these organizations belong to the armed forces, but by the standards of other states they represent the internal forces and maritime frontier protection, respectively. Armament gendarmerie generally similar to that used in mechanized infantry troops. At the same time, at its bases so far can be found, for example, upgraded captured Russian BTR-60 production. The Coast Guard has Sotke with excessive patrol boats and ships 14 types, displacement of which ranges from 20 to 1,700 tons.


The Syrian army on first glance, looks weaker than Turkish. First, in the eyes of the difference in the number of throws. The total number of troops in Syria little exceeds 320 thousand people. More about the same is in reserve and can be called in a few weeks. As in Turkey, most of the personnel related to ground troops — about 220 thousand people. At the same time, we should not forget about the outcomes of the Syrian civilian war. Part of the military defected to the rebels, taking with him some weapons. Also a certain amount of arms and military equipment were destroyed during the fighting. Because of the number are listed at the beginning of the first clashes in the past year. Precise count of the current state of the Syrian armed forces, for obvious reasons impossible.

Syrian ground forces organizationally divided into three army corps, which are composed of motorized infantry, armored and artillery divisions. In addition, there are several separate brigades, which is armed with a «special» weapon. Please note separate brigades, the armed ballistic missiles of short-range acts as anti-ship missiles. Also several brigades allocated to perform specific tasks by artillery, anti-tank missiles and airborne. In the end, the frontier troops of Syria also in a separate brigade.

Main strike force Syrian troops are armored fighting vehicles production Russian T-55, T-62 and T-72. Their total population — almost five thousand units, more than a thousand of them in storage. These tanks can not be called completely modern, but with proper approach to the interaction forces even older types may represent a risk for the opponent. In addition you need to see that almost all the more outdated T-55 has long been in storage, and the most widespread in Syrian army tanks are T-72, of which there are more than a thousand. Number of other armored vehicles in the Syrian armed forces almost equal to the number of tanks. With all this infantry fighting vehicles, armored personnel carriers, etc. differ little huge diversity of types. For example, in adjacent parts immediately can serve old BTR-152 and the new BMP-3. The total amount of infantry fighting vehicles 3 models (Russian / Russian BMP-1, BMP-2 and BMP3) achieves 2-a-half thousand, and armored personnel carriers for the figure is half thousand. Newest armored personnel carriers in the Syrian Army are BTR-70, which, coupled with the number of armored infantry pushes on some thoughts regarding the selection of combat vehicles. It seems, vehicles Syrians prefer tracked with greater firepower.

Field artillery Syria Russian manned systems of different types and calibers at 2,500 barrels. Approximately fifth part of all is self-propelled guns and machines presented 2C1 «Carnation» 2C3 «Acacia», also SPG 122mm on the basis of the T-34-85 and D-30 guns, vaguely reminiscent of an old Soviet SU-122. The rest is towed artillery. The most common tool in the Syrian army — 130-mm howitzer M-46 — available in quantities greater than 700 units. Second largest artillery system — gun-howitzer D-30. Self-propelled and towed guns of this type are available in the amount of 550-600 pieces. Rocket artillery Syria has only with 2 types of multiple launch rocket systems. This Russian BM-21 «Grad» (about 3 hundred combat vehicles) and the Chinese «Type 63» (about 200 towed launchers).

Protection of troops on the march and on the positions of the responsibility of the army air defense. In its structure there is more than one and a half thousand barrel systems, including self-propelled ZSU-23-4 «Shilka». In addition, units of the military defense imparted a small amount of anti-aircraft missiles short range, such as «Osa-AK», «Strela-1» or «Strela-10». With all of this in the full amount of SAM military defense noticeably less than in individual air defense forces (on their little later.)

To fight the enemy armored targets Syrian fighters have quite a wide range of jet and rocket weapons. Most of them simply — rocket launchers RPG-7 and RPG-29 «Vampire» Russian production. Clearly the number of these systems is not clear, but apparently, the account goes, at least, to weave. For all this, as practice shows, a large number of anti-tank grenade was in the hands of the insurgents. Also comparable conventional rocket-propelled grenades and a cheap Syria at the time took a lot of Russian anti-tank missile systems, from «baby» to «Cornet». Number of complexes varies considerably, «babies» in the current time, there are at least a couple of hundred, «Cornet» — about a thousand. Few years ago in France, Syria acquired two LAW MILAN, but due to political and economic circumstances subsequent purchases euros weapons were not carried out.

Separate missile brigades armed tactical missile 9K72 «Elbrus» in its export version R-300 9K52 «Luna-M» and 9K79 «Point». Full number of launchers all 3 complexes exceeds 50 units. In addition, according to unconfirmed reports, the storage is between 25 and 50 complexes of R-300 and «Luna-M».

Airforce Syria divided into several 10’s squadrons, obeying the command of troops. This 20 units filled with fighters, interceptors, fighter-bombers and scouts; Dogfight with seven frontline bombers; seven mixed helicopter (transport do puzzles and percussion); 5 pure shock helicopter; four wheelers; also one training, one squadron of EW and one particular compound helicopter for transportation command. Total strength of the Syrian Air Force equals 60 tyscham people. Another 20 thousand can be mobilized within a few weeks. Number of aircraft valued at 900-1000 units.

Syrian Air Force relevant difference from the Turkish Air Force is the large number of specialized frontline strike aircraft. Currently, the Syrian pilots use about 90-110 Su-22M4 and Su-24MK. In addition, the above weave MiG-23 aircraft, including modifications «BN», held in reserve or being upgraded. Fighter aircraft Syria represented old Russian MiG-21 fighter and reconnaissance configuration (more than 150 cars, some in reserve); already mentioned the MiG-23; MiG-25 and MiG-25R (40 units); also relatively new MiG-29, the total number is estimated at 70-80 cars.

Syrian Air Force helicopter fleet is divided into five types of helicopters. Most of their mass — Mi-8 and its future development of the Mi-17. Over hundreds of these helicopters are used to transport problems, and about 10 are equipped electronic warfare equipment. Shock function is assigned to Russian / Russian Mi-24, Mi-2 and SA-342 French Gazelle. Finish by Mi-2 does not exceed one and a half to two 10-s, there are others in the amount of 35-40 pieces each.

Syria uses transport aviation airplanes 7 types, and most of them (about 10 cars) only operated for transportation command. Troop transport, in turn, made one of the AN-24, AN-26, six and 4 Il-76M. As a passenger boards for transportation High Command used the Tu-134, Yak-40, Dassault Falcon Dassault Falcon 20 and 900.

In light of warfare in recent decades, special importance is attached to the air defense, which is designed to protect the unit on the march and in the positions as the principal objects of the troops and the country. Syria is realized in the late ’70s and began to build the latest air defense system. Defense forces are separate native troops of the Syrian armed forces. The total number of military personnel, defense exceeds 40 thousand people. Troops are divided into two divisions. Not considering them as part of the Air Defense Forces have two separate regiments, armed missile complexes «Osa-AK» and C-300B. Other units equipped SAM Russian production, including the old C-75 and C-200. It should be noted that the most massive complex in the Syrian air defense forces until now is a C-75 (300 units). Second in the number — 2Q12 «Cube» short range, of which there are about 2-hundred. Over the latest technology in air defense forces are complex families S-300V and S-300P also 9K37 «Buk» and «Armour-C1.» It should be noted that the latter, according to some sources, has already shown its effectiveness in practice, when, in June of this year, a Turkish spy RF-4E invaded Syrian air space and was shot down.

In the end, the naval forces of Syria. Compared with Turkish they are few and rather poorly equipped. So, in the Navy Syria serves only four thousand people. Another two and a half in reserve. Until nedavneshnego time as part of the Syrian navy had two submarine project 633, purchased from the Soviet Union, at the moment they are removed from the Navy. The largest surface warships to Syria are two frigates / patrol boat project 159, as well acquired from Russian Union. Ships with a full displacement of more than a thousand tons are anti mortars RBU-250 and 400-mm torpedo tubes. Any built Missiles missing, air defense only against the MANPADS taken on board. Syria also has a Navy 3-dozen missile boats. This Russian boat project 205 «Mosquito», armed with missiles T-15U «Termite» (20 units), and Iranian Tir, modified to use the same weapons. Short list of combat boats patrol boats Russian project 1400ME (less than eight) and less than 6 Iranian MIG-S-1800. Noteworthy that as part of the Syrian navy has many comparable minesweepers. Seven ships of this class were purchased from the Soviet Union in 1258 and owned projects, 1265 and 266M.

Despite its small size, a Syrian Navy squadron of naval aviation. In its structure there are more than 10-ka antisubmarine helicopters Mi-14PL and Ka-27PL 5 similar purpose. In addition, as a multi-purpose machines used half a dozen helicopters Ka-25.


As we see, the armed forces of Turkey and Syria differ significantly in high quality and in quantity. Moreover, in a number of different sorts of occasions even the concept of order or any other kind of troops. For example, in the Syrian Air Force, unlike Turkey, so far there are special frontline bombers. Turkey, in turn, took tactical standards of NATO and refused this kind of winged art. Hard to say whether it was the right decision or not.

Necessary to direct attention to the Turkish fighter-bomber F-16. Turkey has 250 such machines and fully say exactly what they will be the main striking force in the event of full-scale conflict. NATO countries have long been preferred to wage war from the air and «fall» to the ground operations only when the risk of loss of land forces will be reduced to a minimum, or when there is a need for this. On the basis of these views on the war, it is possible to realize zeal Syria to buy new anti-aircraft systems: the presence of modern SAMs war is unlikely to complete a full and unquestionable success attacked party. Proper integration of air defense systems Syrian military can make life very pilots Turkey, directly to an almost complete inability to perform the bombing sorties. Naturally, this development looks unlikely due to obsolescence mostly Syrian SAMs. At the same time, the Turkish Air Force, too, can not be called ultra-modern. It should be noted, Syrian Air Force in the event of conflict, most likely, will only defend. Hardly expect attacks on administrative centers in Turkey: a breakthrough in large enemy targets will be associated with a very great risk to Syrian pilots.

As for the naval forces, the Syrian navy will hardly compete with the Turkish. Turkish naval fleets are significantly behind the leading countries, but Syria’s not catching up even Turkey. Because the Turkish naval forces as needed can kill Syrian ships and boats right on their bases, including without air support. Unfortunately, this Fri Syria oppose practically nothing, not counting already outdated anti-ship missiles «Termite.»

The greatest enthusiasm for the analysis is the land operation. Maybe the Turks, seeing the European experience in Libya will not send his infantry in Syria and entrust the ground part of the war the local rebels. But in this case, even constant air strikes and artillery can not render tribute to the effect, at least in the first time. Recent months have shown clearly that the forces of Damascus does not concede the insurgents, and in some cases even all sorts of win. Because the transfer of responsibility for a ground operation in the hands of the so-called armed opposition threatens configuration like war towards its tightening. Naturally, air support can provide adequate care, but the structure of the Syrian air defenses significantly complicate it. If the Turks are also otvazhutsya without the help of others to advance to the Syrian countryside, there awaits them a severe reaction. In this case, as very often happens, the experience will be the key to victory fighter and commander, as the coordination of actions of troops.

With regards to the experience worth remembering the history of the armed forces of Syria and Turkey. Thus, the Syrian Army, beginning with the formation of its own in the 40s of the last century, often participated in wars. The last great conflict with the role of Syria — War in the Gulf. Turkey is the last time intensely fought a war in 1974, during the fighting in Cyprus. Completely fair to imagine that the Syrian military in such criteria are better prepared, and not just the high command has experience fighting, but even managed to participate immediately in several wars. Accordingly, in respect of combat experience, Turkey is likely to markedly loses Syria.

Summarizing, I must say the subsequent: Syrian and Turkish army differ significantly, while on separate Fri «wins» one country, then another. This prevents make clear predictions of events. But forecasting is difficult only in the event of failure of NATO to support Turkey in the intervention. If the United States, Britain, Germany and other members of the Alliance will accept the decision assist Ankara in its «struggle for the freedom of the Syrian people», the result of the military conflict with a large modicum of probability will be sad for today’s Syrian control, and for the whole country.

source topwar.ru

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