Saturday, October 27, 2018

Russia’s Force Structure Suggests Kremlin More Concerned about Internal Enemies than Foreign Ones, Baranov Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, October 27 – Russian officials are increasingly declaring that Moscow is preparing for war, Anatoly Baranov notes, but they seldom point to the fact that the force structure the Kremlin has developed suggests that it is more concerned about conducting a war against its domestic enemies than against its foreign foes.

            The Russian army has approximately 900,000 people in uniform, less than a fifth of the number it had at the end of Soviet times and 300,000 less than North Korea has at present, the editor of the Forum.MSK portal says. But the number of personnel in organs charged with domestic control is vastly larger (

            Russia’s interior ministry currently has almost as many employees as the army does, 894,000; the recently created and rapidly expanding Russian Guard has 340,000 more; and the FSB, which keeps its total staff numbers a secret, nonetheless is estimated to have upwards of 250,000, for a total of a half a million more than the army, Baranov continues. 

            Of course, not all of these forces are directed at the suppression of domestic enemies, Baranov concedes; but enough are to raise some questions not now being asked: just whom is the Kremlin preparing to go to war with: the NATO countries or its own people?  The answer is less clear than one would like, Baranov concludes.

No comments:

Post a Comment