How to beat Russia, Swiss-style!

By the graces of social media, I just came across rare footage of several of Switzerland’s covert defence installations. In true James Bond style, the country has used its terrain to camouflage major military assets that, when the time is right, transform into fully fledged and primed weapons systems. Most of these were built in the 1970s to withstand a possible Soviet invasion, raising the germane question of whether Ukraine (and perhaps NATO’s easternmost members…) should have invested in similar capabilities?

Enjoy (video is in French – do not be alarmed):


7 thoughts on “How to beat Russia, Swiss-style!

  1. Habeas Corpus says:

    If anyone has the right to turn their mountains into Swiss cheese I suppose it’s got to be the Swiss.

    I don’t pretend to understand the rationale but doesn’t it look very Maginot like, not exactly mobile artillery.

    • FB, you get at a critical point. The defences are built on the presumption of a conventional, undeniable, unambiguous attack, when any adversary worth its salt would use less-than-conventional and eminently ambiguous ways of gaining power. And it isn’t just the Swiss – I think the whole Article 5 guarantee is, in a powerful sense, limited by such narrow-mindedness and lack of imagination (see this old KoW post from 2010: http://kingsofwar.org.uk/2010/09/some-unspoken-truths-about-nato/)

  2. Swiss Maid says:

    Unfortunately, our bourgeois-military establishment have not yet realized that modern wars aren’t fought with halberds and maces and that any conceivable enemy would overwhelm us whatever we do in the mountains. (They still believe that Hitler refrained from attacking Switzerland because he was afraid of the Swiss army. No joke. The idea in WWII was that the government and senior military would retire into the mountain bunkers and continue resistance from there while the rest of the country would have been given up to Hitler.)
    So now, the Swiss military are not only operating all those bunkers but are planning to purchase 22 Gripen fighter jets from Sweden, which, in my opinion, amounts to throwing a couple of billion franks out of the window. But they must have their toys, as the video demonstrated…

    • Swiss Batman says:

      Which is in fact absolutely NOT true! Swiss Armed Forces have practically given up all their fix combat infrastructure. The Réduit, by the way, was just the most pragmatic approach on how to defend a country that is encircled by an enemy. The price for Nazi Germany would have been high, had they tried to invade. So high even in their own calculations that they refrained from the plan.

  3. ParthianShot says:

    The bunkers are a bit pointless I grant you but the concept of being able to turn civilian infrastructure to war time purposes is sound one. Singapore I believe build roads such that they may be used as landing strips as an example.

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