- "Ja, a Hexerbatallion officer can exterminate tens of those Gott verdammt tanks, but there are hundreds of tanks for each officer!"
- ―A German soldier in a letter to family during World War II
If one word was to describe the formative years of the Red Army, and the Soviet Armed Forces in general, it would be "Sacrifice." During the civil war that the organization was created to fight, the army was ill-equipped but had a surplus of manpower. This resulted in an overarching doctrine that prioritized victory over the lives of the soldiers achieving it. From a strictly pragmatic standpoint this was the best strategy available at the time, but it resulted in disproportionate casualties even when victory was achieved. This was to be a grim prediction of the fortunes of the Red Army during the next great conflict that it engaged in, World War II. Further issues arose from that misguided attempt to remove all ranks from the army and make all equal. This lack of a firm chain of command resulted in additional potentially avoidable casualties, and the effort was soon abandoned.
During World War II, the situation from the previous war repeated itself, though with differing causes. Though a firm chain of command had been established during the intervening years, it had been gutted by Stalin during his purges of all those seen as a threat to his power. This, combined with Stalin's refusal to allow the army to prepare for the imminent German invasion resulted in truly catastrophic losses during the first months of the war, with more than half a million soldiers captured by the Nazis. Later in the war, however, the fortunes of the Red Army changed, as Stalin allowed skill to replace sycophancy, and as the massive factories of the USSR completed their evacuation from the front lines and began to manufacture the seemingly endless tide of war material that would eventually push the Nazis back to Berlin. Though casualties were still heavy, with the USSR suffering losses that would have destroyed nearly any other power in the war, their now well equipped and well-led troops proved themselves capable of defeating even the elite of the Hexerbattalion who had in years previously destroyed all who opposed them.
The Red Army exited the Eastern Front victorious, and with a refined doctrine that has served them to this day. Traumatized by the massive casualties suffered during both wars, the modern Red Army focuses on ensuring that their rank and file are the best conventionally equipped troops in the world. While their refusal to deploy Type-II or Type-III units in force still results in average casualty counts higher than those of their chief rival, their technological advantage allows them to overcome even the greatest mage in time. This doctrine has also been applied with great success to the various conflicts during the Cold War, as the weapons supplied to the undertrained but numerous revolutionaries proved both simple and effective enough to allow said revolutionaries to defeat the magically superior US-backed forces.
Modern Day Edit
Today, the Red Army is on the forefront of automated force projection, deploying and utilizing a wide variety of remotely-controlled drones which are in the process of replacing their baseline infantry entirely. The Red Airforce has similarly embraced automation, and it is not uncommon to see entire wings of aircraft with only a single pilot among them. The Red Navy, by comparison, lags behind in that all but its smallest ships still require a living crew, if ones far smaller than what would be expected. The pinnacle of this push towards automation, however, can be found in the Soviet response to the Citadel Class Aerial Battleship, the Il-104, which are constantly accompanied by a defensive screen of completely autonomous drones, capable of organic response to incoming threats without input from a human operator.