This morning’s Rossiyskaya gazeta repeated a lot of what’s known about the retiring generals’ troyka. More interesting, however, are other statements and language it used to describe what’s going on in the Defense Ministry.
The article is subtitled, “Cadre Purge Begun in the Defense Ministry.” An odd choice of words for something that’s been going on for some time, and is supposed to be routine and unsensational.
About Friday’s latest Armed Forces cadre ukaz, RG reports:
“In the Defense Ministry, they don’t conceal the fact that these aren’t the last cadre decisions which will affect highly-placed military leaders, particularly from the military department’s central apparatus.”
The paper repeats the rumor about possible uniformed opponents of Serdyukov’s (or Makarov’s) military reforms being shown the door as well as the contrary points and official denials. Again, no sensation; all this was hashed over a week ago.
RG ends this way:
“Meanwhile, in the Defense Ministry they don’t exclude new dismissals. The thing is right now in the Russian Army certification [аттестация] of all command personnel is going on, and, according to its decision, they will propose that a number of military leaders, who’ve served in Moscow more than five years, serve in more distant military districts.”
“As a source in the military department told RG’s correspondent, the majority of dismissal reports appear at once when they suggest a man change his duty in the capital for an equivalent one somewhere in Russia’s sticks.”
Yes, we know generals often prefer to retire in Moscow, get valuable permanent apartments in the capital, and enable their well-connected wives to keep lucrative employment rather than spend a few extra years serving in a possibly terminal post in Khabarovsk, etc.
What we’re getting at here (again) is either (a) there really is something to Moskovskiy komsomolets’ report about drastically cutting uniformed officers in the central apparatus, or (b) RG was being lazy and reran a worn-out story using some loosely chosen verbiage.