Russia’s 200th mechanized infantry brigade has just been sent to the Norweigan border.
The Russian Navy’s Northern Fleet announced yesterday the permanent deployment of the 200th Motorized Infantry Brigade of the Russian Army adjacent to the Norwegian border. It is the first of two brigades to be permanently assigned to the Northern Fleet and placed under the overall command of Vice Admiral Vladimir Korolev. This development is not only significant for the size of the formation itself and where it is being deployed, but also for the composition of forces within the brigade.
That is a lot of soldiers!
A brigade is a major tactical military formation that is typically composed of three to six battalions, plus supporting elements depending on the era and nationality of a given army and could be perceived as an enlarged/reinforced regiment. Usually, a brigade is a sub-component of a division, a larger unit consisting of two or more brigades.
Brigades formed into divisions are usually infantry or armoured (sometimes referred to as combined arms brigades), in addition to combat units they may include combat support units or sub-units such as artillery and engineers, and logistic units or sub-units. Historically such brigades have sometimes been called brigade-groups. On operations a brigade may comprise both organic elements and attached elements, including some temporarily attached for a specific task.
Brigades may also be specialized and comprise battalions of a single branch, for example cavalry, mechanized, armored, artillery, air defence, aviation, engineers, signals or logistic. Some brigades are classified as independent or separate and operate independently from the traditional division structure. The typical NATO standard brigade consists of approximately 3,200 to 5,500 troops. However, in Switzerland and Austria, the numbers could go as high as 11,000 troops. The Soviet Union, its forerunners and successors, mostly use “regiment” instead of brigade, and this was common (e.g. Germany) in much of Europe until after World War II.