Some time ago, the Minister of Defense of Russia S. Shoigu demanded from his subordinates to improve public relations. For example, during the recent exercises of the East Kazakhstani Air Force and the Air Force, the Minister ordered to regularly share information with the press on the progress of events. In the last days of the month of June, the course towards openness has been further developed. On the official website of the Russian Ministry of Defense several new sections have appeared, designed to tell the public about the plans of the department. In addition, interested citizens can now comment on the course of change and ask their questions to those responsible.
Perhaps the most interesting section is the “Plan of Activities for 2013–2020”, which briefly publishes information on the intentions of the Ministry of Defense regarding improving the quantitative and qualitative state of the armed forces. For example, before the end of this year, the military department intends to bring the number of contract soldiers to 241,4 thousand people. As a result of this, according to plans, in the underwater navy and only contract soldiers will serve in the battalions of the Airborne Forces. Contracted military personnel will also occupy 75% of sergeant posts and those associated with the operation of complex equipment and machinery. Also among the plans concerning personnel, it is worth noting the formation of two scientific companies, in which the most gifted graduates of universities will serve.
By the end of the next 2014, the Ministry of Defense intends to bring the staffing of the armed forces to the level of 95-100% of the required. At the same time, the number of contract soldiers will increase to 295 thousand people. During 2014, the contractors will fully occupy all the positions of sergeants, as well as displace conscripts from special forces and battalions of marines. Also, employees under the contract will occupy half of the posts of intelligence officers and artillery specialists in the airborne troops and "take away" the same share of driver and repair technicians. The formation of scientific companies in the 2014 year will go in accordance with the tasks of the armed forces. Exact plans for this will be determined later.
In 2015, the number of contract soldiers will reach 350 thousand people and they will fully occupy all the posts of intelligence officers and artillery airborne specialists. Also, three-quarters of the posts of drivers and repairmen will be assigned to contract workers. In a year, by the end of 2016, the Russian armed forces will have 400 thousand contract servicemen, who will take all the driving and repair "vacancies". Finally, in 2017, contractors will displace conscripts from positions associated with the operation of sophisticated machinery and equipment. The number of such servicemen will grow to 425 thousand people. In the future, according to existing plans, the quantitative indicators of the personnel of the armed forces will not undergo major changes, and the main work will concern raising the level of their training and equipping the troops with new equipment and weapons.
Equipment and weapons
The new section of the Ministry of Defense website also published information on the planned course of the state rearmament program. The tables show the required percentage of new equipment and weapons for a particular year. So, by the end of the current 2013, the armed forces should have 19% new weapons and equipment. Next year, this parameter should reach 26%, and in 2015, 30%. For 2016, it is required to increase the share of new equipment by another 11%, and after 2017, the share of new weapons should approach half of the total. At 2018, growth is planned up to 59%, at 2019, up to 64%. Finally, during the last year of the state program of re-equipment, the share of new equipment should exceed the required 70%.
The dynamics of the class of technology is as follows. During the current 2013, the share of new submarines will be increased to 47% and will remain so until the end of next year. Further, in 2015, a slight increase of a few percent per year will begin, which by the end of the decade will allow it to reach the mark of 70%. Similarly, plans for surface ships are similar. The current share of new ships in 41% will gradually grow and only in 2017 will pass over the mark in 50%. Next, a period of relatively mass delivery of the built ships will begin, and in 2020 the requirements of the State Program will be fulfilled. Such rates of renewal of the equipment of the Navy are due to the specifics of the construction of ships and submarines, since the assembly of structures and installation of equipment takes a lot of time.
Much less labor intensive is the construction of aircraft and helicopters. This fact will allow faster to update the material part of the air force. So, on the 2013 year, it is planned to update the aircraft fleet to the level of 23% new technology, for helicopters this parameter will reach 39%. Already in 2015, the Air Force will have 37% new aircraft and 63% new helicopters. Two years later, the share of new aircraft and helicopters will reach the level of 55% and 76%, respectively. By the end of the state program, the share of new helicopters will grow to 85%, and by this time new aircraft will reach the required level in 70%.
The plans of the Ministry of Defense to upgrade the rocket forces and artillery look interesting. During the first years, rocket complexes will receive special priority, after which a large-scale upgrade of artillery will begin. So, by the end of this year, the troops should have 27% new tactical missile systems. In the next 2014, it is necessary to increase their share to 64%, and to the end of 2016, to 82%. Finally, 2018 will launch missilemen for the year with a fully updated fleet of missile systems. From 2013 to 2016, gunners will have to use new weapons, whose share will not exceed 50-55 percent. However, in 2017, the number of new artillery systems will increase by about 10% and by the end of this decade will reach the level of 79-80% of the total number of available guns.
Armored fighting vehicles sector - tanks, infantry fighting vehicles, armored personnel carriers, etc. - Over the next years will gradually increase the pace of its renewal. This year it is required to bring the share of new equipment of this class to 20%, plans for the next 2014 provide for an increase of another five percent, and already in 2015 the growth will be 12%. After that, the relative number of new tanks, armored personnel carriers and infantry fighting vehicles will reach a level of 37%. For 2017, it is planned to reach the 55% mark, and two years later, in 2019, before the end of the State Armament Program, the troops will have 75% of new armored combat vehicles. In total, by 2020, it is planned to upgrade the fleet of armored vehicles to the level of 82% of new vehicles.
The fleet of multi-purpose vehicles will not be updated too quickly, its retrofit rate will not exceed 5-7 percent per year. Nevertheless, given the current 40% of new machines, by the year 2020 will be able to fulfill all the requirements of the state armaments program.
Simultaneously with the purchase of new weapons and equipment, the existing materiel will be repaired. In the current 2013 year, it is planned to keep the number of serviceable vehicles at the level of 55-65 percent of the total number used. Already by 2016, it is planned to bring this figure to the level of 80-85 percent. According to the plans of the Ministry of Defense, in the future, the proportion of good technology will be maintained at this level.
It is also worth noting promising projects, the start or completion of which is planned for the coming years. Several such programs have already been launched. Until 2016, it is planned to complete several projects of tanks, infantry fighting vehicles, etc. combat vehicles. In a year, design work on new aviation complex, anti-aircraft missile system and corvette. Another project involving the construction of a destroyer will be completed in 2019.
Figures describing the re-equipment of the armed forces, as follows. During 2013, 15 divisions will receive new equipment, in 2014, 12 will receive more. By the end of the state program, by the end of 2020, a total of 406 connections will be transferred to new equipment and weapons.
In the published plans of the Ministry of Defense, a separate section is allocated for work on updating the command and control system. So, by 2015, the National Center for Defense Management will be created. In addition, in the coming years, a network of combat control and day-to-day operations centers will be created. By 2016, such centers will appear in the commands of the types and types of troops, in 2017 in the military districts. In the next 2018, the creation of centers in associations of types and types of troops will be completed.
Also, to increase the effectiveness of the troops, it is planned to purchase equipment for satellite navigation of the GLONASS system. By 2020, the percentage of vehicles equipped with such equipment will increase from the current 40-45 percent to the required 70%.
In the next seven years, special attention will be paid to the training of personnel, first and foremost, sailors, pilots, and drivers of automobiles and armored vehicles. So, in the current 2013 year, the crews of surface ships and submarines should spend at sea 60 days. Next year, the total duration of the hikes should be 75 days, and in 2016-m - 100. Beginning with 2019, the crews of the Navy will spend at sea 125 days per year.
Similarly, air raids will grow. This year, pilots of operational-tactical aviation must spend 100 hours in the air, pilots of military transport aviation connections - 110 hours. For military and naval aviation, the planned 2013 raid on a pilot year is 70 hours. Prior to 2016, these figures will increase to 105, 130, 100 and 90 hours for operational-tactical, military transport, army and naval aviation, respectively. Finally, in 2020, naval aviation pilots should fly up on 120 hours, operational tactical aviation - 125 and army aviation - 130. Military transport aviation will have the largest air raid: every pilot in it will make flights with a total duration of 150 hours.
Drivers of road transport and armored vehicles will also improve their skills, often driving to roads and landfills. During 2013, the driver must drive at least 350 kilometers, and the crew of tanks, infantry fighting vehicles or armored personnel carriers - 250. In 2014 and 2015, the required mileage will be 500 and 350 km for car drivers and armored vehicle crews, respectively. In 2020, the mileage of practical driving should be 1000 kilometers for motorists and 500 kilometers for tank crews and crews of other armored vehicles.
Planned increase in the number of parachute jumps in the relevant units. So, this year the servicemen of the reconnaissance units must complete nine jumps each. For 2017-2018 years, the number of their jumps will double. Finally, in 2020, each of the reconnaissance fighters will jump 21 with a parachute once. For military paratroopers and airborne assault units, as well as for airborne units of the military districts, the rate of jumps will be lower, but will also gradually increase. In 2013, the military personnel of these units will make six jumps each, and in 2020, by 12, i.e. twice as much.
The published materials also provide figures relating to the recruitment to higher education institutions of the Ministry of Defense. This year's Higher Academy of the General Staff will welcome 70 new students. 790 people will go to specific academies. Military schools and institutes in 2013 will open the doors for 15680 new cadets. In addition, this year will open a new Presidential Cadet School. Four more of these schools will start work before 2016.
Military Science Complex
In the near future, the Ministry of Defense will be engaged in the development of science and technology. Already this year a new research organization will be opened. In addition, the creation of the Center for Unmanned Aviation, the Center for the provision of advanced military research and development systems and the Main Research and Testing Center will begin soon. These three organizations will start work in 2015. The Unified Modeling Center of the Ministry of Defense will open in 2017, and in two more years there will be branches of the Unmanned Aviation Center in military districts and a separate Research Center for Advanced Technologies.
In addition to the central organizations engaged in research and future projects, over the next years regional centers and branches will be created. As a result of all these works, by the year 2018 it is planned to build a system of research and design organizations capable of creating and developing promising technologies, as well as ensuring their implementation.
It is also necessary to note the new section of the Ministry of Defense website called “Discussion”. In it, everyone can leave their comments to the rearmament program or to other initiatives of the military department. Questions are also taken to the responsible persons. As the head of the press and information department of the Ministry of Defense, Major General I. Konashenkov, said, all comments after verification will be published and transmitted to the appropriate military leaders. Only offensive and obscene notes cannot be tested.
The publication of data on the renewal of the armed forces as in the form News, and in the form of a collection of basic information about the plans, it clearly says that the Ministry of Defense has finally set its course on openness to the public. The ability to comment on a decision or ask a question to officials of the ministry will also facilitate the interaction of society and the armed forces. Thus, a small and uncomplicated innovation will significantly improve the information situation around the armed forces in general and reform in particular. Of course, the military will not disclose secrecy information, but published data will be useful.
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