This chapter examines relevant changes in the Soviet forces and traces the emergence of Operation Metel’. In the invasion, special and regular Soviet forces were gradually inserted into Afghanistan at the latter’s request or they were sent in to augment existing facilities. Soviet force developments represent an effort to combine maximum applicable force and mobility under the dramatically altered threat environment and stringencies of the 1990s. Following the start of the blockade and diplomatic ploys, which continued unabated through 1990, came the reorganization both of Soviet force structures and of command and control for the operation. The numerous crises and transformations in the Soviet security environment have led some to suggest introducing the concept of low intensity conflict into Soviet military planning. The gap between the US terms—low intensity conflict and counterinsurgency-and the Soviet term-local war-highlights the difficulties involved in understanding Soviet military thinking and points to enduring differences between the two militaries.