Relations are currently sour with Russia. Which is unfortunate because it would be better if they were were a partner taking care of business in their part of the world. But sadly mutual interests often conflict. A pity as the relationship between our respective national leaders looked quite promising at the outset.
Time for a military assessment in Third Generation War terms.
The easiest thing to assess is military budget. The Russian Federation spends 90 billion US on their armed forces. That isn't bad, it puts them in third place behind the PLA. You already know who number one is but then we have planetary commitments and the Russians only have regional ones. Consequently those numbers break even respectively.
The second easiest thing to assess is equipment. The Russians have a lot of new equipment that is comparable to our current inventory, however in the main their everyday gear remains 1980s coldwar era stuff. It is being replaced but that is still the stuff they are relying to fight a major Third Generation war with if they have to fight today. Qualitatively American equipment is better but the US military has been in constant operations for fifteen + years. A lot of our equipment is beaten up and worse the sequestration has choked the hell out of maintenance on it. This has also left the logistics in shambles. Now that is all being changed for the better rapidly but that is the situation on the ground as of right now. It is closer to a draw than I am comfortable with
Uniformed troops. Here it gets tricky because the raw numbers don't mean all that much.
Russian Army :771,000 uniformed soldiers
US Army : 457,000 uniformed soldiers
So yes, the Russians are bigger than we are on paper. And I assure you it means absolutely nothing. The quality of the solider in question means everything. It has been that way since...
The smaller and more professional army has been crushing citizen soldier conscripts since the days of Scorpion the First of Upper Egypt.
My first hand experience with Russian troops was during the Partnership for Peace exercises of the mid-1990s and OH. EM. GEE. The word tragic best describes the former Warsaw Pact troopers of that period. The old-ass squad bays we assigned to them, (which had been locked down as unfit for human or even Marine Corps habitation) were like palaces so far as those poor sad bastards were concerned. When they left, we literally burned the mattresses and linens that they had used and if you know how cheap the Marine Corps was in the 1990s that is saying something. We didn't trust bleach to kill what they brought with them. The first few days of hosting them at our chow halls brought the exercises to a halt because their troops were actually sick from gorging themselves on our food. Trying to work side by side with them in the field proved utterly impossible because they were just too dangerous to work with...or even near. We quietly referred to PFP as BustCapEx.
But have things changed since those days? Well...somewhat. The Russian Federation's Army in the main still of one year conscripts. No real experience and by American standards no real training. Training still emphasizes a robotic obedience to orders and punishes initiative. This is pretty much the opposite of US doctrine.
However the Putin is in the midst of changing that. He is moving the Russian Army into a smaller more professional model but he is not there yet.
Now let's look at the minus' on the US side of things. Say, "thank you Barrack!" The US military's morale hasn't been this low since...It may never have been this low. Obama was the greatest disaster the armed forces of the United States have ever suffered and I am including the burning of Washington DC during the War of 1812. The drastically destructive draw downs combined with Obama's social experiment/libtard vanity projects have left the morale of American troops lower than a gopher's navel. However the career force has seventeen years of combat experience under it's belt. Minimum acceptable standards of intelligence, education and behavior are higher than the armed forces of the Russian Federation.
Finally, there is the matter of raw material that produces soldiers. The societal cocktail that produces them is rare. There just is not that many places that do it. There are combinations of trust and initiative combined with courage and fortitude. And yes, there are parts of America that still produce those traits on mass.
If you disagree you are invited to shut the fuck up and leave the Dark Herald forever because Cataline dislikes arguing with retarded Gamma Males.
Bottomline, things in this category are closer than I would like but the edge definitely goes to...
Now lets look at the second most important factor; Geography. Where you fight a war is probably the biggest determining factor in whether or not you are going to win it.
A war in Russia's own backyard would be a disaster for us. The strategic problem of the Eurasian landmass hasn't changed since the days of Heinz Guderian. It's simply too big for a logistics train to keep up with. Particularly a modern American logistics train. On top of that Russian doctrine now dictates the use of nuclear weapons in the face of mass conventional land attack.
Russia can't be conquered, it is as simple as that.
So what about a war away from Russia? One in Syria perhaps?
Your ability to project your power away from your homeland depends on your navy. Russia isn't even close to it's Cold War standards in that regard. For now they remain a brown water force. The Russians can't project power like that.
If there was a Third Generation war in Syria the US would win. But what would America win?
We've been there.
We've done that.
Nothing in the Middle East is worth our lives, our blood and our sacred honor. We are about to become a major oil exporter, we no longer have a strategic interest in the region. It's time to start acting like it.