Using improvised munitions and rifles designed in the previous century these inexperienced conscripts repelled elite Panzer tank corps across hundreds of miles, how? Until the 18 th century, the Feudal Tsarism of Russia had little to no interaction with the Western World. For two and a half centuries this isolated, agrarian state continually lagged one step behind the West in terms of technological capability. However, despite an egregious lack of comparable armaments, the Russian army surprised the world and prevailed in several conflicts against modernized Western states. Serious questions arose concerning contemporary military thought and doctrine.