Voices from Russia

Saturday, 30 March 2013

30 March 2013. RIA-Novosti Video. VDV Paratrooper Priests Jump with Mobile Chapel

00b VDV Chaplains. 29.03.13

VDV chaplains awaiting the “green light” to jump

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00a VDV Chaplains. 29.03.13

Exterior of inflatable mobile field chapel

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00c VDV Chaplains. 29.03.13

Interior of mobile field chapel… icons are stuck to the walls with velcro fasteners. Do note that the priest’s wearing a telnyashka under his riassa, and that the ribbons on his riassa indicate that he’s a former serving officer.

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00d VDV Chaplains. 29.03.13

Chaplains now serve with all manner of military units as “Assistants to the Commander” (in place of the old Sov-period zampoliti (“Political Assistants”)

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00e VDV Chaplains. 29.03.13

Foreign cadets at the Ryazan Margelov Higher Airborne Command School (Twice Order of the Red Banner) take all of the above in… shall they take their observations home with them? One hopes so…

The sign in the background reads, “Parachutist! If the chute doesn’t open – pull the ring!”

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Click here for a 3-minute vid of a group of VDV paratrooper chaplains jumping from a transport plane with a large mobile chapel that they set up in the field upon landing.

30 March 2013

RIA-Novosti

http://en.rian.ru/video/20130330/180326277/Russian-Paratrooper-Priests-Jump-with-Mobile-Cathedral.html

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Monday, 21 January 2013

21 January 2013. Sergei Yolkin’s World. The Old is the New… Or, Is the New the Old?

00 Sergei Yolkin. The Old is the New... Or, Is the New the Old. 2013

The Old is the New… Or, Is the New the Old?

Sergei Yolkin

2013

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Shoigu is in uniform, indicating that political dalliance with “civilian” control of Minoborony is over, there’s a pair of old-style boots with footcloths in the corner, and there’s a Soviet banner behind the map. All of this points up that Yolkin doesn’t believe that the Serdyukov “reforms” have any oomph or staying power. It was much the same after 1918… the Red Army became an organic continuation of the old tsarist forces in the end, just as the current forces are, essentially, an organic continuation of the Red Army. The generals LIKE the “old army”… it DID win the Great Victory, didn’t it?

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The Russian armed forces may see some of the major reforms launched by former Defence Minister Anatoly Serdyukov scrapped, as his recently appointed successor, Sergei Shoigu, continues to give in to generals on lesser issues that still have an impact on the big picture. Serdyukov’s reforms came under heavy criticism within the military, resulting as they did in the dismissal of tens of thousands of officers, disbanding hundreds of army units, and the closure of dozens of military training centres. To abolish the mass-mobilisation concept, which was at the base of all these painful decisions, marked a break with 300 years of Russian military culture. The counter-reform now underway is an inevitable result of the decision that President Putin made when he appointed Shoigu… the decision to make the Minister of Defence an Army General once again. When commenting on this decision, analysts close to the Kremlin insisted that the president was trying to help the newly-appointed Shoigu build up his authority… something that the fiercely-denounced civilian Serdyukov lacked. However, Russian generals are skilful manipulators. They can easily make any new commander believe that he’s part of the army machine, and each new head of the Minoborony inevitably feels like part of the military corporation.

17 January 2013

Aleksandr Golts

Russia Beyond the Headlines

http://rbth.ru/opinion/2013/01/17/new_defense_minister_at_the_mercy_of_conservative_generals_21963.html

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

5 December 2012. RIA-Novosti Infographics. The Legendary Kalashnikov Assault Rifle

00 RIA-Novosti Infographics. The Legendary Kalashnikov Assault Rifle. 2012

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4 December 2012

RIA-Novosti

http://en.rian.ru/infographics/20121204/177913149.html

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

6 March 2012. A Photo Essay. Them’s “Good Eats” in the Russian Army… They’re NOT MREs

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What’s for dinner, Mum? “Borsch, solyanka, and pease pudding with meatballs, guys”…sure ain’t “beans n’ muthafuckers” or MREs (“A lie three ways… it ain’t a meal, it’s ain’t ready, and it ain’t edible”). These pictures are from the largest Russian Army mess hall in Leningrad Oblast. To hear the Western media talk, the Russian forces are falling to pieces and they’re unable to do anything correctly. The Westerner doesn’t know the Russian mentality. When a Russian’s pushed to the wall, he’s a tiger. In ordinary times, he doesn’t give a shit. That’s the way of it… always has been, always will be, until the last trump sounds… and that’s all that one can say of it. Russians are not one step from starvation… far from it. Aren’t you ashamed that you listened to Rush Limbaugh and that whole Fox News crew? Sit down, pull up a plate, and chow down… there’s always room for one more… a guest in the house is God in the house!

Barbara-Marie Drezhlo

Tuesday 6 March 2012

Albany NY

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