Dienstag, 18. November 2008

Militärreform in Rußland

Im Kontext der Diskussionen über die Modernisierung der russischen Polizeiwaffen ist vielleicht auch dieser (nicht mehr ganz junge) Artikel der New York Times von Interesse, der den aktuellen Stand bezüglich der Militärreform in Rußland und die damit verbundenen Probleme ganz gut zusammenfaßt:

The Russian military fell to third world standards from neglect and budget cuts in the turbulent years when Boris N. Yeltsin was president, they say. The new Kremlin leadership is working to create a force that can actually defend the nation’s interests.
The military has embarked on a program to buy modern weapons, improve training and health care for troops, trim a bloated officer corps and create the first professional class of sergeant-level, small-unit leaders since World War II.


Even a high-profile speech three weeks ago by President Dmitri A. Medvedev, ordering a military modernization program and the largest increases in defense spending since the death of the old Soviet Union, was viewed here as short on substance and designed more for a domestic political agenda.
Mr. Medvedev declared that by 2020, Russia would construct new types of warships and an unspecified air and space defense system. Military spending, he said, will leap by 26 percent next year, bringing it to 1.3 trillion rubles (about $50 billion), its highest level since the collapse of the Soviet Union — but still a small fraction of American military spending.
Mr. Medvedev pledged that Russia would shore up its nuclear deterrence and upgrade its conventional forces to a state of “permanent combat-readiness.”

American experts were unimpressed. “Russia is prone to make fairly grandiose announcements about its military,” said a Defense Department official who discussed government analyses on condition of anonymity. “These programs have long been in the works. They are not new plans. They are not new programs.”


Some of the steps undertaken to wrench the Russian military out of mediocrity resemble changes in the American military over several decades.
Russia plans for its ground forces to move to a system designed for the deployment of brigades, rather than bulkier division or corps headquarters — nearly copying the United States Army’s approach.
The Russian military also plans to offer pay and housing incentives to attract noncommissioned officers — the valuable class of sergeants — to make a long-term career of military service.

While not as drastic as the move by the post-Vietnam American military to switch from the draft to an all-volunteer force, the plan would shift Russia further from reliance on one-year conscripts, who are not in uniform long enough to master even basic skills.
Just last week, the Russian military leadership announced it would further reduce the number of people in uniform, to about 1 million from the current 1.1 million, far below the 4 million-strong military at the end of the cold war.

Most significant, according to American government officials, is a four-year plan to reduce to 150,000 a Russian officer corps that now numbers 400,000, a shrinking that is certain to produce significant opposition within the senior ranks.
The Russian General Staff will be trimmed, and the number of generals is planned to fall to 900 from the current 1,100. But in an acknowledgment that the general officer corps can slow the pace of change throughout the military, most of those reductions will occur through retirement.

The Kremlin knows that its military bureaucracy is riddled with corruption, Pentagon officials say.
Experts here say that audits ordered after Vladimir V. Putin took over from Mr. Yeltsin in 2000 found that 40 percent of the budget for some weapons programs and salaries was lost to theft and waste.
The new defense minister, Anatoly E. Serdyukov, was a surprise choice, given that he had no military background but was an expert in finance and taxes. As he moved to clean house across the military-industrial complex, the reason for his selection became clear.


Verwandte Beiträge:
Von der Katjuscha zur Kursk
Abschied von der Kalaschnikow?
Nochmals: Abschied von der Kalaschnikow
Backyard Safari wird zitierfähig ;-)

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