Never discount the potential significance of a handshake and photo with the supreme commander-in-chief.
On March 23, Russian President Vladimir Putin received Ministry of Defense general and flag officers (along with some from the FSB, FSO, MVD, etc.) in the Kremlin’s Georgiyevskiy Hall.
The meeting is a regular affair where Putin addresses men in uniform elevated to new positions of responsibility.
Putin started down the row with MOD three-star generals — General-Colonels Sergey Rudskoy, Aleksandr Zhuravlev, and Gennadiy Zibrov. Rudskoy is Chief of the General Staff’s Main Operations Directorate. Zhuravlev commanded Russian forces in Syria in the last half of 2016 while serving as Chief of Staff, First Deputy Commander of the Southern MD. He’s now a deputy chief of the General Staff. Zibrov heads the Air Force Academy named for Zhukovskiy and Gagarin.
Fourth-in-line is General-Lieutenant Mikhail Teplinskiy, the fast-burner replacement for Zhuravlev in the Southern MD. He’s followed by new LRA Commander General-Lieutenant Sergey Kobylash. Then General-Lieutenant Aleksey Zavizon who reportedly fought in the Donbas and commands the Central MD’s 41st Army. Lastly, the MOD’s principal spokesman General-Major Igor Konashenkov who’s in charge of the military’s Information and Mass Communications Department. He’s been there awhile but the organization was called a directorate until recently.
Next is Chief of Staff of the Pacific Fleet’s Primorsk Composite Forces Flotilla, Rear-Admiral Vladimir Yakushev. To his right might be General-Major Denis Lyamin, commander of the Central MD’s new 90th Tank Division.
After Lyamin is General-Major Tagir Gadzhiyev of the 1st Composite Aviation Division in the Southern MD.
The balance are difficult to identify, excepting the second to last naval officer who is Rear-Admiral Oleg Krivorog of the Black Sea Fleet’s 30th Surface Ship Division.
TVZvezda’s coverage of the ceremony is in the video below (starting at 1:25).