The recent hostile actions in eastern Latvia by guerrillas sympathizing with the Russian government have overstretched the Latvian Land Armed Forces. The need of increasing patrolling and shows of force have become evident after several skirmishes between ethnic Russian guerrillas and Latvian National Guard detachments. These skirmishes had consistently resulted in Latvian National Guards casualties. The very nature of the Latvian National Guard -light infantry with no significant heavy weapons support- hampers their ability to deliver effective fires on an elusive and fast moving enemy.
|A SOF three men team along a RG33 mine-resistant armored vehicle.|
Until recently the use of off-shore based cyber-warfare by Russia was limited to civilian disruption. The new trend is numerous attempts by Russian guerrillas to interdict military operations. It is noted that across east Latvia there is an increase of kidnappings and assassinations of IT professionals presumed to have been involved in military cyber affairs.
Multi-national, NATO SOF teams with knowledge of cyber warfare, counterinsurgency and demolitions are currently deployed and ready to intervene. To augment their mobility, they have been provided with light armored vehicles with heavy machine guns.
From an AAR dated ██████ (NATO SOF Team ████ operations in █████, east Latvia), the use of an RG33 mine-resistant, light armored vehicle is highlighted.
The mission objective was to destroy hardware and assets that could potentially be used to retrieve Latvian Armed Forces documents and access permissions to servers in the Ministry of Defense (Riga). NATO SOF Team ████ was already operating in the area and was asked to demolish the house of Mr. █████ ██, former IT contractor of the Latvian National Guard. Ethnic Russian Guerrillas had already kidnapped Mr. █████ ██ and comms intelligence strongly suggested that some of these hardware/assets were hidden inside his house. Enemy resistance was likely low, with dismounted guerrillas (platoon minus sized) devoid of heavy weapons. Hand held rocket launchers, though, continued to be very common among rebel forces.
|The village of █████ (east Latvia) is a typical rural built up area with all buildings lined up along a main road. It was decided that advancing with the RG33 vehicle through the main road would be too dangerous.|
|While inside buildings, the non-shared targets and fields of fire of the dismount and the vehicle were a problem that is common among any vehicle-infantry teams.|
|... By means of demolition.|
Intelligence Officer's Recommendations
The use of the RG33 light armored vehicle provided substantial firepower and protection to the SOF team. It is noted that the effective use of this vehicle will need at least a four operators team (2 to drive, man the heavy machine gun, 2 to provide security and to perform dismounted operations). The mobility of the RG33 significantly decreases the time to deploy quick reaction forces. In addition, the cargo capacity of the RG33 increases the spectrum of weapon systems and the lasting power of infantry teams.