Russia’s Inflatable Army – A Tool of Deception

Looking back at the most significant battles and military operations in history, deception has always been an important strategy, and in modern-day Russia balloons are one of the most important tools of deception. Bouncy castles aren’t known as the most effective tools of war, but in Russia they're just as important as actual weapons that are worth millions of dollars. That’s because bouncy castles that are designed to mimic actual weapons cost thousands less than the real thing and can be deployed anywhere quickly. An inflatable T-80 tank, for example, costs around $16,000 as an inflatable, as compared with an actual tank that costs millions. If your goal is to deceive the enemy, appear stronger than you really are, draw their fire, or simply buy time by forcing them to verify targets, an inflatable army would be an important piece of your arsenal. Russia’s inflatable army is part of Maskirovka, a Russian doctrine that mixes strategic and tactical deception with the aim of distorting the enemy’s perception of reality.