Contemporary Operating Environment

Russian Special Forces Operating in Syria

By The Cove August 3, 2020

Click here to access the Washington Post article

On Sunday 11 December 2016, Russian TV aired a 9 minute segment that purported to show a secretive Russian SOF unit operating in Syria.  

This was picked up by the Washington post, who recently re-published the video with an explanation of the unit, tactics and weaponry. Unlike the well-known Spetznaz, the KSO are far more secretive and are modelled on the US successes in SOF development over the last 15 years.

This video provides a window into a usually unseen world that is well worth a watch. You can see equipment, weaponry, night vision capability, personal carriage, snipers, TUAVs and (perhaps most interestingly) an advanced Unmanned Ground Vehicle.



The Cove

The home of the Australian Profession of Arms.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of the Australian Army, the Department of Defence or the Australian Government.


Fascinating how closely the KSO seemed to have replicated details of Westen SOF; 1913 rails, holographic sights, active hearing protection, multicam style BDU, duel NODs on high frame helmets, even skull & crossbones patches a la US NSW(does the Jolly Roger feature in any Russian folklore?) They seemed to have learnt from the west pretty well... how long will it take for the west to adopt armed UGVs etc from the Russians?

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