Vladimir Putin signed a Decree according to which the authorized strength of the Russian Armed Forces is increased by 137,000 people. Viktor Murakhovsky, a leading Russian military expert and editor-in-chief of Arsenal of the Fatherland magazine, explained what is behind such a decision and why it was done.
The previous Presidential Decree on the authorized strength of the Armed Forces, signed on November 17, 2017, is no longer valid. The new one will come into force on January 1, 2023. The text of the Decree says that under the Law “On Defense” the number of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation is set at 2 million 39 thousand 758 staff units, including 1 million 150 thousand 628 military personnel.
“It can be said,” Viktor Murakhovsky says, “that the vast majority of staff units will be used to recruit the Ground Forces. In fact, 137 thousand is the number that will replenish nominal battalions and companies.
What is “named”?
— The ones that started to form about a couple of months ago. They are named on a territorial basis: Tatarstan, Bashkiria, the Chechen Republic, Primorye, Udmurtia, and so on.
For example, only the Chechen Republic forms four battalions: Akhmat-East, Akhmat-West, Akhmat-North and Akhmat-South. All these numerous battalions and companies will form the basis of the Ground Forces. They are recruited exclusively from contractors, on a voluntary basis. All social benefits provided for military personnel, as well as life insurance standards, apply to personnel.
– Why are the Ground Forces being strengthened? Did the special operation in Ukraine show that the number of these troops should be significantly increased?
– In fact, practice has shown that the Ground Forces still play a decisive role in the war. And this is regardless of the development of the Air Force, Naval and other types and branches of the Armed Forces. The ground forces today still remain the main striking force and the backbone of the Russian army.