The complex US and Russian relationship has been and will be part of a lot of entertainment media for the foreseeable future, and Battlefield: Bad Company 2 is no exception to that trend. After all, it is a relationship that shaped the latter half of the 20th century, and tensions remain even today, which aren’t helped by the events in Ukraine. The imagining of an all out war in Bad Company 2 revolves around a weapon of mass destruction. These aren’t nukes though, but the Scalar weapon which can be used to knock out an electricity grid, and cause destruction without the dangerous radioactive effects.
The weapon is first designed by the Japanese during World War II and later resurrected by the Russian Colonel Arkady Kirilenko. While both developments are separated by decades they are united by one goal, and that is to turn the tide against the USA and hope to destroy it. While the Japanese reason involves pushing back the invading forces, the Russians do so in an attempt to break the stalemate that the two superpowers have entered in their latest new war.
Kirilenko learns of the weapon and sees it as a way to break what is a war of attrition, one where the two sides are so equal that the only way to beat the other is to destroy its central command at home and where both sides are equal in force they’re also equal in being practically impossible to invade successfully. Sure, Russia has been invaded several times,but the only long term success dates back to the Mongol Empire. On the flip side a full scale invasion of the United States hasn’t occurred in the nation’s 250 years existence due to how large it is, and it is surrounded on either side by two of the world’s largest oceans.
It’s an impossible task in an impossible situation so Kirilenko gives the go ahead for the new weapon to be constructed and used to break and weaken the US to such a degree that it is possible to invade them. From the perspective of Bad Company he is a madman who is a threat to the US, but what isn’t really acknowledged is that Kirilenko has the support of millions of people and they want what he wants; the fall of the United States. Throughout the 20th century Russia (or the USSR at the time) played second fiddle to the mighty America and Kirilenko has grown to resent this status, filled with a desire to banish what he sees as an insult to the Russian people.
Kirilenko knows that invading the US fully without crippling it first would be a suicide mission at best, and would only serve to weaken Russia as its military is entangled in a war against the world’s most powerful nation. So, taking out the grid and wiping out effective ways of communications for the US military makes the invasion so much easier, as smaller pockets are quicker to subdue. By the time the military knows what’s going on, the Russian’s could have taken half of the country already and quickly moved to established a network of bases.
He is most likely sick of the back and forth, so sees this easier invasion as a way to end the bloodshed as quickly as possible so some form of peace may exist. It may not be for the benefit of the Americans but it benefits him and the Russians as he can point to how many of his nation’s people have been spared during a bloody and extended land war, allowing them to go home. He’d be hailed as a hero in Russia, and while he’d face resistance groups throughout the fallen US, they’d be easier to deal with than a fully equipped military.
Kirilenko wants the glory of turning Russia into the dominant superpower, but that glory is cut short when he is killed by Bad Company. However, as he dies, his dream is almost realised as the Russian armed forces begin the invasion of the US. Naturally, they would be arriving with the expectation that the grid had gone down by now, but since Bad Company destroyed the weapon that will never happen. Russia has instead entered what Kirilenko wanted to avoid in the first place, a full land war with a fully active United States military. He died knowing that the war would continue and many more lives would be lost on both sides, instead of ending quickly so a new peace could be created.
It may just not have been the peace the West wanted.