Alternative Cold War History 1994

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Army

Bulgarian People’s Army (BKA)

The Bulgarian Army was organized along Soviet lines and tasked with operating in the Southern Group of Forces (SGF). The army was highly trained and had some very good equipment but consisted largely of conscript forces. The primary task of the BKA was to field a FRONT (1st Balkan) of three Combined Arms Armies (CAA), then take a Soviet and a Romanian Front under command and expel any NATO forces from its assigned area.

The three CAAs consisted of a mix of Motor Rifle Divisions (MRD), Tank Brigades TB) and supporting arms, these formations, like their Soviet equivalent have varying states of readiness:

  • Category A-divisions which have 80% or more of their full strength

  • Category B-those with between 30% and 50%

  • Category C-those with between 5% and 10%

Category A formations could be ready to move in the matter of a few hours or less, while Category B would be ready in about 72 hours and Category C would take about 60 days.

Four of Category A MRDs were equipped along standard Soviet lines with a mix of equipment. Details of the structure can be found here. Two of the Category A and the four Category C Divisions are not standard, they have 4x Motor Rifle Regiments (MRR) as opposed to the normal three, but no Tank Regiment (TR). The Category C Divisions have older equipment.

Four of the five TBs also followed the standard organization; however, 9th TB was stationed near the capital and was organized quite differently. 9th TB has 3x Tank Bns each of 49 tanks (as opposed to 3x 31 tank Bns) plus 2x Infantry Bns which each have 10 tanks and an independent Tank Coy of 13 – a total of 182 tanks or twice the number of a standard TB.

The Airborne Bde does not have BMDs but is on very high readiness. The Naval Infantry Bn is largely used for garrisoning naval bases.

Equipment is mixed and depends the division or brigade in question. The table below outlines the wide variety available and since nothing is ever thrown away, if it is not in use, it’s in reserve or storage.

MBT T-72 T-72A/AK 100 Improvement on the base model with laser range finder(LRF) and improved Fire Control System (FCS)
T-72B 90? Better protection, FCS & LRF. New gun and ATGM (Anti-Tank Guided Missile)
T-72M1 240 Czech version of the T-72A for export
T-62 T-62MD 250 Improved armor, up to 200 others converted to support vehicles or bunkers. In reserve.
T-54/55 T-54 900 Soviet built with some Romanian upgraded versions
T-55 465 Soviet built
T-55AM2 436 Czech upgrade
T-34 T-34/85 ~400 All in storage
Bunkers 140 Some with 100mm T-62 gun turrets
PT-76 250 Amphibious tanks, mostly in reserve
IFV BMP-23 BMP-23 172 Local design
BMP-23D ? Improved with ATGM
BRM-23 ? Recon vehicle
BMP-1P 100
APC BTR-60 Various 781
MTLB Various 1100 Including many specialist vehicles
BTR-50 700 Reserve
Armd Cars BRDM-2 74 Reconnaissance
Artillery 100mm BS-3 16
120mm 2S12 356 On MTLB chassis, locally produced
2S11 359 BTR-70 chassis
A-19 25
122mm 2S1 750 locally produced
M-30 500
130mm M-46 72
152mm 2S3 18
D-20 150 Towed
MLRS BM-21 392
RM-51 24 Czech version of BM-13
AT Guns 85mm D-44 200
100mm SU-100 68 In reserve
MT12 200
SSMs Frog-7 24
Scud-B 67
SS-23 24
AAA 23mm ZSU-232 300 Locally produced
ZSU-23/4 30
57mm ZSU-57/2 100
S-60 16
76mm M1938 ?
100mm KS-19 ?
SAMs SA-3 Goa 34 750 missiles
SA-4 Ganef 30 150 missiles
SA-5 Gammon 26
SA-6 Gainful 20+ 750 missiles
SA-8 Gecko 24 780 missiles
SA-9 Gaskin 50 750 missiles
SA-13 Gopher 20 500 missiles locally produced
MANPADs SA-7 Grail ? 6700 missiles locally produced
SA-14 Gremlin ? 250 missiles
SA-16 Gimlet ? 200 missiles
SA-18 Grouse ?
IRBMs SS-21 Scarab-A 18 28 HE Warheads
Scarab-B ? 8 Cluster munitions Warheads

More detail can be found here: https://www.scribd.com/doc/184374791/The-Bulgarian-Military

This Wiki has some good detail as well: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Structure_of_the_Bulgarian_People%27s_Army_1989#1st_Army