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[] Computer für russische Streitkräfte,

...werden offenbar dringend benötigt...

Izvestia, 21 February 2002
(aus: CDI Russia Weekly-#194, 22 February 2002)

Dmitry Safonov
Exchanging a Soldier for a Computer - The Russian armed forces need
better maps and better administration
21 February 2002

A Defense Ministry board meeting took place yesterday, chaired by
Minister Sergei Ivanov. It was devoted to prospects for developing the
system in the Armed Forces, and types and branches of troops. A separate
topic for 
discussion was topographic- geodesic resources (cartography, navigation, 
intelligence, etc.) for the army and the navy, and what kind of new
technology may be required.

The most important item on the agenda was not new for the military. 
Administration issues have always been important for the Defense
especially during the military reforms, aimed at optimizing the armed
Within the past year the Defense Ministry has set up a new branch of the
military - 
the Space Forces, merging the military-space forces and anti-missile
defense forces. 
Before that, these units were parts of the Strategic Missile Forces.
Apart from that, 
several military districts have been merged into two new ones: the
Ural and the Siberian districts. In the course of this process not only
headquarters changed their location, but also other infrastructure, as
well as the 
system of monitoring the subordinate troops. (..)

The second issue - topographic-geodesic resources - is more complicated.
The anti-
terrorist operation in Chechnya has shown that the Russian army lacks
topographic maps of the region where it is fighting. The existing maps
were made 
in Soviet times, and have nothing to do with reality. The air force and
navy have 
similar problems: pilots and captains need to know for certain where
they are, 
instead of figuring out their location (as they do it now) using methods
dating back 
to the time of Columbus. The same problem is connected with
weapons. We do have such weapons, but we cannot aim them. The Americans
this via satellites, but specially trained soldiers do the job in

According to the Defense Ministry, we can increase the effectiveness of
operations and modern weapons and vehicles only by improving the
resoures which make up the automated system of battle control. In the
Air Force 
effectiveness could be improved by 15%, in the Army by 25%, and in the
Navy by 
almost one- third.

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