Center for Defense Information
Research Topics
CDI Library
What's New
CDI Library > Johnson's Russia List

Johnson's Russia List


December 2, 2000   

This Date's Issues:   4665


Johnson's Russia List
2 December 2000

[Note from David Johnson:
1. Itar-Tass: Psychics and wizards said battling for Russian minds.
2. Interfax: Over 140bn dollars said transferred abroad in past nine years.
3. Moscow Times: Boris Kagarlitksy, ALWAYS A DISSIDENT: Racial Purity Never Goes Out of Style.
4. AP: Communist Leader Criticizes Putin.
5. BBC Monitoring: NTV, Russian Communist Party leader voices disappointment with Putin's policies.
6. The Globe and Mail (Canada): Geoffrey York, MD's monumental task: Get Russians off vodka.
8. Freda Fuller Coursey: re 4662-Miller/Top Ten.
and Defense Reform in Russia
. (Presentation of Sergei Rogov, director of the USA and Canada Institute)
10. Yavlinsky statement re reform of federation.
11. Financial Times (UK): Will the Russian bear roar again?: Charles Clover traces the growing influence of the right theories of Alexander Dugin.
12. Komsomolskaya Pravda: Viktor Baranets, WIN BY NUMBERS OR SKILL? What the new reductions will do to the Russian armed forces.]

Psychics and wizards said battling for Russian minds

St Petersburg, 1st December: No less than 300,000 psychics and wizards are
fighting for control over minds in Russia. Up to 60 per cent of Russian
nationals are psychically unstable. Pseudo-healers and sect members
outlawed in the West have found refuge in Russia, said speakers at a
scientific conference in the St Petersburg eparchy on Friday [1st December].

The conference was attended by the clergy and psychiatrists, who pledged
joint efforts to protect people's minds.


Russia: Over 140bn dollars said transferred abroad in past nine years

Moscow, 1st December: Over 140bn dollars were moved abroad from Russia
between 1991 and 1999, State Duma corruption-fighting commission chairman
Nikolay Kovalev said in an interview published in the `Vek' newspaper on
Friday [1st December]. He quoted the Institute of International Finance
that incorporates 270 Western banks, broker offices, investment funds and
other financial officials as his source.

"In 1999 alone, 20bn dollars left Russia. Institute experts believe that
the same amount may flee Russia in 2000," Kovalev said. Russia loses an
amount exceeding its budget to corruption and imperfect legislation
annually, he said.


Moscow Times
December 2, 2000
ALWAYS A DISSIDENT: Racial Purity Never Goes Out of Style
By Boris Kagarlitsky

The most convenient way to follow the twists and turns of the U.S.
presidential election has been the Internet. It is amazing how often they
manage to update their web sites and how quickly the information flows
compared with television and the newspapers. And while you are waiting for
the next update, you can enjoy the spectacle of "chats" on the subject.
Goodness, the things they write!

Russian web sites also like to provide ample opportunity for web surfers to
register their opinions. Goodness, the things they write, too! "All Democrats
are Jews!" my computer screams at me. "Not only is Joe Lieberman a Jew, Al
Gore is too!" "America is ruled by Jews." "The lawyers are all Jews. The
people recounting the Florida votes are Jews. Too bad Hitler didn't finish
the job ".

This is not just one sick person writing. The Russian Internet is full of
this stuff. One web journalist I know said, "They don't even bother reading
the articles. They just react to some buzzwords and automatically start
typing 'Jew' or 'Chechen.'"

People who use the Internet are far from the poorest and least educated
segments of our society. Unfortunately, Russian sociologists long ago
discovered that the higher levels of education here correspond directly with
higher levels of racism.

I suspect one of the main reasons for this is simply ordinary competition.
The typical worker slaving away for $40 a month doesn't worry that some
professor with a non-Russian name is going to come and take his job. Most
villagers have never even seen a Jew, much less a Chechen. For them, talk of
"racial purity" and the like is pure abstraction.

For our educated people, though, competing for lucrative positions in the
bureaucracy, "racial purity" can be a competitive advantage. And is Russia
exceptional in this regard? I think not.

In the West, though, public displays of racism are taboo and that taboo has
been internalized by virtually all of "educated society."

Even if someone is inwardly inclined toward racist views, he most likely
won't risk revealing it, even to himself. Such feelings are kept as a hidden,
secret shame.In this regard, Russia is considerably more free. Here, we are
not only not ashamed of our vices, but we take pride in them. Publicly.

Just last weekend I saw a show on ORT television called "For Chinese Only."
The point of the show was that "yellow" emigrants are taking over the Russian
Far East and pushing out Russians. The Chinese are said to be taking away
jobs from Russians. The show was a litany of racial stereotypes. The Chinese
only help one another. As soon as one gets in the door, he pulls a hoard of
others behind him so the Russians are squeezed out.

We've heard the same thing about Jews for centuries. And Ukrainian
nationalists say the same thing about Russians.

There is no point in telling these people the Chinese are not taking away
jobs but creating them through their energetic economic activity. There is no
point saying the Far East is in a state of demographic crisis and needs
immigrants desperately.

Once people get started on racism, they aren't going to listen to reason.

While ORT was going on about the Chinese menace, Russian State Television was
playing all the various candidates for the national anthem. A dozen somber
men with Russian faces sat beneath a two-headed eagle and listened to a host
of songs, all exactly alike. "Russia, glory, Fatherland, Russia, glory ".
The words all ran into one another.

In my mind, they also ran together with malicious whispers about Jews,
Chechens and Chinese coming from thousands of television sets and computers.

Boris Kagarlitsky is a Moscow-based sociologist.


Communist Leader Criticizes Putin
December 2, 2000
MOSCOW (AP) - Vladimir Putin has not lived up to people's expectations since
he was elected president, the leader of Russia's Communist Party said

Speaking at the opening of the 7th Russian Communist Party Congress, Gennady
Zyuganov said the party is forming a shadow government that will oppose the
current administration and suggest alternative policies in all spheres of
life, especially economics.

The party should confirm its position as ``a responsible and irreconcilable
opposition,'' Zyuganov said, according to the Interfax news agency.

Since Putin was elected president in March, he ``has not lived up to the
people's expectations,'' Zyuganov said. He said the current administration
consists of people ``who live for the moment and stay afloat only thanks to
the high price of oil.''

Zyuganov said establishing a ``Soviet-type democracy'' and building a
socialist society were among the party's main priorities.

``Socialism is the modern form of Russian patriotism,'' he said, according to

Zyuganov said the party has been growing in strength since it lost its
majority in the State Duma, the lower house of parliament, in elections last
December. He said the party now has more than 500,000 members and the support
of 30 percent of the voting population.

But, he said, it is ``not enough to just hold onto our position.'' He said
the party must attract those who have left centrist parties that now dominate
parliament and generally back Putin.

In a message to the Communists' congress, Putin said he hopes the party
``will firmly adhere to the principles of constructive dialogue and
reasonable compromise in its work,'' according to the ITAR-Tass news agency.

``I believe that national interests, stability and civil peace in Russia will
continue to be unconditional priorities for the Russian Communist Party,''
Putin's message said.


BBC Monitoring
Russian Communist Party leader voices disappointment with Putin's policies
Source: NTV International, Moscow, in Russian 0900 gmt 2 Dec 00

[Presenter] The Congress of the Communist Party of Russia opened today in
the concert hall of the House of Unions to the sound of the anthem of the
Soviet Union...

[Correspondent] [Communist Party leader] As far as its overall mood was
concerned, Gennadiy Zyuganov's speech was not lacking in optimism. He quite
optimistically assesses the party's prospects and I propose that you listen
to a small excerpt from his speech about how he currently sees the party's

[Zyuganov] Over the past 10 years the majority of the population - at least
60-70 per cent - has recoiled from Yeltsinism. But we are supported by only
half of these. The other half dashes from side to side, from Zhirinovskiy
to Lebed, from Lebed to Putin and so on. Thus, we have a vast field which
is steadily expanding but which still remains unmastered.

[Correspondent] As far as [the party's] relations with the authorities are
concerned, Gennadiy Zyuganov dwelt in some detail on this theme, and from
what he said one can note that he stressed that for now they see only one
thing in what is being done by the authorities - that one set of oligarchs
is being replaced by another, and nothing else.

Gennadiy Zyuganov gave quite an interesting view of the recent presidential
election and I propose that you listen to another excerpt from his speech
in which he gives his assessment of the recent period in so far as concerns
Putin's coming to power and what the communists have seen subsequently and
how they assess the early period of Vladimir Putin's administration.

[Zyuganov] The ruling regime successfully carried out the operation to
replace the president and this raised some expectations in society. The
CPRF [Communist Party of the Russian Federation] had no particular
illusions about the real intentions of the successor. However, taking
account of the expectations which, by contrast with the decomposing
Yeltsin, were inspired by the new president, the CPRF chose to adopt a
restrained approach with regard to Putin. Let him prove the seriousness of
his intentions. But at the same time we, of course, did not refrain from
criticizing those events in the country and those actions of the executive
authorities which were harmful to the people and the state. However, Putin
has now been in power for over a year, and it must be said that the hopes
of the Russian people for a change in the course of state policy have not
been justified...


The Globe and Mail (Canada)
2 December 2000
MD's monumental task: Get Russians off vodka

MOSCOW -- A fearless Finnish physician, risking the wrath of Russian
tipplers, has launched a quixotic crusade against one of Russia's most
cherished traditions: cheap vodka.

Mikko Vienonen marches into the offices of Russian bureaucrats and confronts
them with the damning evidence: a half-litre bottle of vodka with a price tag
of just 47 rubles -- about $2.60.

Brandishing the vodka bottle, along with a cheap pack of Russian cigarettes,
he tries to shame the bureaucrats. For this $2.60, a Russian can buy enough
vodka to get senseless and, for about 27 cents, enough tobacco to take
another step down the road to lung cancer.

Dr. Vienonen, head of the Russian office of the World Health Organization, is
appalled by low taxes on Russia's most destructive vices.

"If you did this in Finland, half the population would be dead in a year," he
says in shocked tones.
"This is clearly not normal," he adds. "This should not be."

Cheap vodka and cigarettes are the great Russian comforters and among the
country's most hallowed traditions. But they are also threatening to
devastate the country.

Over the next 15 years, Russia's population is projected to fall from the
seventh-largest in the world to 14th. Its death rate has soared by 34 per
cent since 1985, and its birth rate has declined just as sharply. The Russian
population, now 145 million, has dropped by three million in the past eight

In the longer term, the projections are even worse. One demographer's
pessimistic estimate is that by 2045, the Russian population could fall to 40
million -- below most projections for Canada for that year.

Most experts say the rising death rate is largely because of the sharp jump
in alcohol and tobacco consumption, especially since an anti-alcohol campaign
begun by Mikhail Gorbachev was abandoned in the late 1980s.

Every day, according to WHO estimates, about 700 Russians die from
alcohol-related causes, including alcohol poisoning, liver cirrhosis,
accidents and suicide. Another 700 Russians die prematurely every day from
heart and lung diseases caused by smoking. Two-thirds of Russian men are
smokers, which is one of the highest rates in the world.

Russia's passion for vodka and cigarettes, combined with its other epidemics
and medical crises, is helping create a health catastrophe. The growth rate
of AIDS and HIV infection is already the fastest in the world. Drug use,
especially heroin addiction, has risen sharply. Tuberculosis has reached
epidemic proportions.

Poverty is widespread, with one-fifth of Russia's population living on less
than $2 a day. And the health-care system is collapsing. Patients often have
to pay bribes or supply their own equipment and medicine if they want to
enter a hospital.

"If you have a heart attack, first you wait for the ambulance, and then you
have to negotiate the price," Dr. Vienonen says.

In the past decade, the life expectancy of Russian men has suffered the
steepest plunge yet recorded in an industrialized country in peacetime. It is
less than 60 years -- worse than Third World countries such as Pakistan or
Egypt. The average Russian boy will not live long enough to qualify for a

The population decline has triggered hysteria in the Russian news media,
where nationalists lament the "death of the Russian people" and demand
drastic steps such as banning abortion, taxing the childless or ordering
women to have three children each.

"By the end of the 21st century, the Russian race will cease to exist," one
Moscow tabloid predicted.

At a Russian parliamentary hearing this year, Dr. Vienonen rejected these
authoritarian solutions. Instead, he bluntly explained a key reason for the

"As long as one bottle of vodka costs the same as a kilogram of apples, as
long as milk is more expensive than beer and a pack of cigarettes is cheaper
than chewing gum . . . any country would have a demographic crisis," he said.

Some parliamentarians resented his tough message. One deputy told him not to
"politicize" the issue.

"He meant that the WHO should give money and shouldn't criticize the
government," Dr. Vienonen says wryly.

"You foreigners don't understand Russia," the bureaucrats often tell the WHO
chief. "When people are having economic difficulties, they should at least
have their alcohol and cigarettes."

But Dr. Vienonen doesn't buy this argument. "If people are having economic
problems, should they also have health problems?" he asks.

Nor does he make any apologies for his blunt warnings. "The time for being
nice and politically correct has gone."

Every month, Dr. Vienonen does a quick shopping tour to see whether his price
comparisons are still accurate. But the results are always the same. In many
shops, a bottle of vodka is almost as cheap as a carton of orange juice.

Russian drinkers see nothing wrong with this.

"Life would be so boring without vodka," says Andrei Voloshin, a 50-year-old
Moscow engineer. "It's our way of life. How can we stop drinking when our
climate is like this?"

Alexander Kudryavtsev, a 42-year-old painter, warns that a tax increase on
vodka could spark a revolt. "Our people are very patient, and they're willing
to live in poverty, but if the government tries to make them stop drinking,
it might lead to social unrest. Nobody can make us stop drinking."

If legal vodka is still too expensive, a hard-core Russian drinker can find
cheaper bottles on the streets. Prices of bootleg vodka sell for as little as
35 rubles (about $1.95) in some shops.

But the counterfeit stuff is so dangerous it can kill a person -- and often
does. In the first seven months of this year, more than 22,000 Russians died
of alcohol poisoning, a rise of 43 per cent from the previous year.

Some Russians insist that higher taxes would merely cause more bootleg
alcohol to flow. But even after a tax increase this year, the federal tax on
a bottle of vodka is still only about $1, and regional and other taxes add
only a little more.

The WHO believes the tax rates should be much higher, and combined with
tougher law enforcement to crack down on illegal sales.

"The consumption of alcohol and tobacco is directly linked to the price," Dr.
Vienonen says.

He also calls for much stricter limits on alcohol and tobacco advertising.
"Every second advertisement on the streets is for alcohol or cigarettes. You
often see young girls offering promotional packs of cigarettes to anyone at
the metro stations. It's absolutely horrendous. Only in developing countries
do you see this lack of regulation."

He criticizes Western tobacco companies for their heavy investment in Russia
and their aggressive promotional campaigns, often under the guise of
patriotic Russian slogans for their brands. "It's absolutely immoral."

The Kremlin, meanwhile, seems almost indifferent. Russia still has no formal
policy on preventive health. Only one official in the entire government is
working on antismoking programs.

Recent trends, however, are as discouraging as ever. President Vladimir Putin
refused to meet WHO director-general Gro Harlem Brundtland on her visit to
Moscow this fall.


December 1, 2000
[translation from RIA Novosti for personal use only]
By Vladislav VOROBYOV
     A serious debate is underway in Russia about a new law on
political parties. A special working group of the Central
Election Commission is preparing the draft law. What
requirements will be stipulated in the law for parties? Yelena
DUBROVINA, the Central Election Commission member, the head of
the working group and the author of the draft answered
questions for the Trud newspaper.
     Question: A coordination of the draft law's articles is
underway. When will we see a finalized document?
     Answer: To begin with I am sure that unless such a law is
adopted, just one party, the Communist Party of Russia (KPRF),
will remain in Russia in the near future. This is the only
party that has a clear-cut party system, and its regional
divisions are functioning. Our [draft] law should prompt other
parties to develop similar systems before they go totally
bankrupt. The draft law will be submitted to the Russian
president in early December. It's up to the president to decide
when the document will be submitted to the State Duma.
     Question: What issues will the working group discuss at
its future meetings.
     Answer: We will discuss types of economic activity that
can be permitted to political parties. The current law allows
public associations to participate in commercial projects and
set up any organizations including joint stock companies. We do
not think parties should be engaged in this activity. However,
they certainly need money. We proposed that parties should be
permitted to go into publishing and sell souvenirs.
     Furthermore, we will discuss the issue of reorganising the
existing parties and requirements for party rules. They should
stipulate a procedure for resolving inter-party arguments.
Parties have no right to turn its members into slaves. It
sometimes happens that deputies elected on the party ticket
forget about their electorate immediately after the election.
People send their complaints to the Central Election
Commission, they simply have nowhere else to turn to.
     Question: Discussions frequently concern parties'
     Answer: Those who oppose financing of parties from the
state budget resort to naked populism. This type of financing
is implemented via election funds. A lot of candidates have run
in elections just because they receive funds from the election
funds. Our group has proposed that the necessary funds be
disbursed from the budget after the election results are
     We realize that the state does not have money to burn. But
parties need to keep working. If they continue to function
without budget financing, it means that they dance to the tune
of those who keep them. We also propose that parties should be
banned from receiving money from companies with the state stake.
It boils down to taxpayers' financing parties without realizing
     Question: A lot of political scientists forecast that the
Right Forces Union will merge with Yabloko due to the impact of
the new law on parties. Does your draft envision a possible
creation of blocs and coalitions?
     Answer: Parties that create such blocs deceive ordinary
people. Voters can hardly understand such situations. Most
people do not know what parties comprise such blocs. I think it
would be better without them. Coalitions are another matter.
They mean partnership relations and coordinated actions of
different parties.
     Question: How much time will parties have to implement
     Answer: Our draft envisions two years.
     Question: Can you estimate today how many parties will
remain after the law is enacted?
     Answer: A total of 188 parties have been registered in
Russia. No more that three dozen of them really function. I
think around 20 will renew registration. The parties that exist
only on paper will belong to the past.


Date:  1 Dec 00 10:12:33 CST
Subject: re 4662-Miller/Top Ten

   I want to take exception to Andrew Miller's statements that it is no longer
necessary or productive to study the Russian language or Russia.
   The Soviet Union covered one sixth of the Earth's surface. Some of that
area, since the collapse, is now under the political control of entities other
than Russia herself, but in all of these places, the Russian language is still
spoken more than the indigenous language, and Russian is still the lingua
franca of the former USSR.
   Noting this, we need to recognize the fact that the structure and content
of a language, any language, is probably the single most reliable indicator of
what that culture actually is (instead of whatever that culture represents
itself to be).
   I lived and worked for a year in the Democratic Republic of Azerbaijan.
Though the Azeris are working hard to reintroduce their own language, much
official business there is still conducted in Russian. Russian continues to be
the dominant language. As I really began to speak and understand Russian well,
I began to be able to grasp the reasons for failure in communication, failure
for understanding of and proper implementation of contract obligations, and
many other things absolutely necessary for working in and with a Russian or
Russified country. It is only through such understanding that the West will be
able to do business with the Russian world. Unless Mr. Miller is suggesting
that the West should abandon the former USSR (and all of its possibilities and
resources, which include enormous reserves of oil), then his suggestion that
we abandon our best means of knowing how to relate to and understand the
Russian and Russified peoples is a ridiculous one indeed.

Freda Fuller Coursey


Date: Fri, 01 Dec 2000
From: Elina Treyger <>
Subject: Carnegie Issue Brief

Russian and Eurasian Program Vol. 2, No. 12, Nov. 22, 2000

Nuclear Arms Reduction and Defense Reform in Russia

On November 22, 2000, Sergei Rogov, the director of the USA and Canada
Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and a prominent specialist on
arms control, discussed the desirable direction of US-Russian nuclear
relations, and potential content of new strategic arms control agreements.
The event was chaired by
Carnegie Endowment Senior Associate Rose Gottemoeller.

US- Russia relations are adrift today; the two nations are neither allies
nor enemies.  Despite frequently expressed opinions that US and Russia are
returning to a Cold War climate, Rogov expressed the hope that there is a
good chance for a strategic partnership.

Rogov stressed that it is necessary for the US and Russia to move away from
the Cold War mentality.   This mentality became institutionalized in the
military sphere through arms control agreements, shaped to regulate a
"highly competitive relationship," which arose from the absolute,
ideological nature of the US-Soviet conflict.  This conflict no longer
exists, and the arms control regime today should be guided by different
principles. Rogov offered three such principles.

The first principle is that the arms control regime should be regarded as
an essentially transitional regime, and hopefully we will soon complete the
last arms control package between the US and Russia.  Rogov's hope is that
this regime will eventually obviate the need for the negative rules that
make up arms control agreements, and enable the switch to more cooperative
rules, similar to those shaping American relation with its NATO allies.
NATO members are bound by the CFE treaty; yet much more positive and
friendly principles define the relationship between these states, not the
treaty's restrictions.

The second principle is that the rigid relationship embodied by MAD
(mutually assured destruction) cannot be changed overnight.   Rogov
outlined three main components of MAD logic: the preoccupation with
numerical balance, reliance on counter-force weapons, and reliance on
tactical early warning.  To illustrate the specific competitiveness of
US-Russian nuclear relations, Rogov pointed out that numerical balance for
instance, does not play a role in US relations with other nuclear powers.
These three characteristics of MAD are what defined stability in the Cold
War era - a very limited notion of stability, according to Rogov.  The new
arms control package should, when possible, replace these components of
MAD, and ideally lead us to a situation of  "no more MAD" in ten years.
During this transition period however, most of these characteristics will
remain applicable.

The third principle is related to the signals our two nations send to
others.  While Russia and the US aim to diffuse tension and tone down the
competitive nature of their previous nuclear relationship, they should not
send signals to China or any other state that a possibility of "catching
up" exists.  Both nations have a strategic interest in not dealing with a
China that aspires to strategic military parity with them.

In accordance with these three principles, Rogov offered several possible
actions.  One of the options is simply a low number of weapons.  President
Putin recently reiterated the Russian position that START III should take
both country's arsenals to 1,500 warheads.  Rogov asserted that this is too
high for Russia; even if the official ceiling is 1,500, Russia should and
most likely will have less. Rogov offered 1,000 warheads on ballistic
missiles as a better limit. Rogov pointed out that this allows airborne
weapons to be treated in a different package.  Perhaps the old definitions
of strategic and non-strategic weapons should be changed; instead we should
distinguish between nuclear weapons carried by ballistic missiles (ICBMs
and SLBMs) and those that are carried by aircraft. With a limit of 1,000
warheads on ballistic missiles, a common ceiling should be established on
ICBMs and SLBMs of no more than 500.  Under this arrangement, each side
would be free to decide how to deploy its weapons. MIRVing of mobile ICBMs
should be allowed; and mobile ICBM SS-27, should be treated as
"stabilizing" as the D-5. 

Another idea Rogov proposed is the adoption of different alert stages.  All
deployed weapons would be classified according to a scheme of different
alert stages.  For instance, high alert status may denote weapons that
could be launched within minutes; low alert weapons could be launched
within days or weeks; and zero alert weapons would require months.  Even if
Russia or the US place 500 weapons on high alert status, the scenario of a
counter-force disarming first strike becomes impossible.  Raising the alert
status of weapons by one side would send a clear signal to the other side,
who can respond in kind. 

The combination of a low number of weapons with an alert status
differentiation will help us to move beyond "the Holy Grail of nuclear
theology" - that is, the knowledge that one side is capable of destroying
its opponent without warning in half an hour.  If these two proposals are
adopted, Rogov estimated that Russia would have a 1,000 warheads, 700-800
of these on ballistic missiles, and 200-300 on the heavy bombers.  If there
is an option of MIRVing Topol-Ms, half of the 700-800 missiles would be on
roughly 150 of these, and the other half on the 7-8 submarines.  The US
would have numerical superiority - it is not likely to agree to less than
1,000 ballistic missiles, and an additional 700 on bombers.  Rogov doubted
that the superiority in airborne weapons would afford the US a real
advantage, and is thus acceptable under his proposed regime.

Rogov suggested that it is then possible to rethink the conventional
offense/defense relationship.  Even if a decisive first strike attack
becomes impossible, Russia would retain sufficient retaliatory potential,
even with limited defenses.  Limited defenses would mean that instead of 50
million Americans, 40 million would perish in the retaliatory strike.  This
does not at all change the essence of retaliation, and brings up the
question of what limits limited defenses? Rogov claimed that the Clinton
administration has not been able to answer this question.  ABM treaty does
not prohibit all strategic defenses -  it does not prohibit strategic air
defenses, strategic ASW (anti-submarine warfare?), or land-based strategic
defenses.  It limits land-based defenses by prohibiting territorial
defense, placing a limit on the number of interceptors, and restricting
battle management system -- command and control - by imposing strict
technical limitations on the phased array ground based radar.  Now the US
wants to deploy new technology; according to Rogov, it does not have
effective new technology yet, and it will take years before it will have
anything to deploy.  Rogov expressed his personal opinion that if US still
wants to deploy this future technology, and at the same time fundamentally
change the relationship with Russia, Russia can be accommodating on the
issue.  It is possible to imagine maintenance of the general ABM treaty
regime, with somewhat different limitations.

On the issue of interceptors, Rogov asserted that space-based defenses only
become problematic when they acquire capability to intercept missiles
during mid-course or at boost phase; this is the point at which defense is
no longer limited, but becomes really robust.  This is a line that should
not be crossed, Rogov cautioned.  With respect to numerical limits on
interceptors, the original 1972 protocol sets it at 200; anything between
100 and 200 is negotiable and acceptable.  The main problem is what types
of restrictions to maintain on battle management systems.  The new
generation of space-based sensors renders the old restrictions on phased
array radar irrelevant; the proposals of the Clinton administration do not
include any restrictions on x-band radar and SBIRS satellites.  Rogov
proposed several possible restrictions that would address this new

Russia can propose that the US deploy only 4 or 6 SBIRS satellites, instead
of 24.   The orbits' lifetime could be restricted to 2 years, the
satellites could be forbidden from going above the degree that allows them
to cover Russian territory, or from changing orbits. Thus the command and
control of ballistic missile defenses becomes again effectively restricted,
while preserving the Americans' ability to deal with limited threats such
as North Korea or Iraq.

To achieve the kind of strategic partnership that he envisions, Rogov
offered another suggestion.  The desired kind of relationship between
Russia and the US should not be formalized by 800 pages of small print of
the START I treaty, but should be more "flexible and self-regulating."
Establishing an informal common ceiling on offensive and defensive weapons
would aid that objective.  For instance, both can agree that each side
could have no more than 600 missiles, and no more than 500 offensive
missiles.  Thus, if one side wants more than 100 interceptors, it would
have to cut the offensive potential, creating a situation where neither
side would be willing to build up too great of a defensive system. 

To conclude his discussion, Rogov ventured several predictions regarding
the US-Russian nuclear relationship.  He expressed the opinion that George
W.  Bush is more likely to win the presidency, and the resulting Republican
administration will not rush into the decision of NMD deployment.  It will
not do so for several reasons - mainly, because there is nothing to deploy.
 Secondly, Rogov claimed that it would be difficult for the new
administration, whether Republican or Democratic, to push through any
controversial decision, because of the close balance between parties in
Congress, and the circumstances of this election.  Rogov also expressed
confidence in Governor Bush's security team, asserting that they understand
the costs of unilateral withdrawal from the ABM treaty.  Overall, Rogov
concluded that in the near future, US-Russia relations are "not going to be
a disaster, but a period of very serious bargaining."
Questions and Answer Period

Rogov elaborated on several points of his presentation through his answers
to the numerous questions posed to him.  To further clarify the state and
the prospects of US-Russian relations with regards to nuclear arms control,
Rogov shared his perceptions of the Russian government's attitudes, and
outlined some of the key strategic issues around which the strategic
partnership between the two countries can be built.

With respect to the Russian official position, Rogov admitted that Russians
would naturally prefer to deal with an America without NMD.  While Russia
would like to preserve the ABM Treaty in its original form, it would also
like to reduce American offensive capability, harboring no illusions about
matching it. Rogov suggested that this provided some leverage to the
Americans, and although Russia is not currently making any concessions,
realistically it understands that status quo cannot be maintained.
President Putin had made a serious commitment by ratifying START II, and he
is unlikely to become uncooperative in the future.    

Rogov also identified several strategic interests that demonstrate the
advantage of a strategic partnership between Russia and the US.  First,
both view China as a potential threat.  If China's rapid modernization is
to be followed by a military modernization, China turns into a country that
can physically challenge Russia and threaten its natural resources.  Both
US and Russia consider it in their interests to prevent China from catching
up in the nuclear field. Second, both nations face the challenge of Islamic
fundamentalism, and both are unsuccessful at responding to this challenge
that is proving to have no military solution.  Third issue of mutual
interest is energy - the US must realize that Russia could play an
important role in stabilizing the global energy situation, with its great
natural gas and oil resources.  These and other issues of shared concern
demonstrate the need and the advantages of a strategic partnership, and the
dangers of perpetuating hostile competitiveness. 

Rogov's presentation concluded in the same cautiously optimistic tone that
he began - although there are problems, Russia and the US have both the
incentives and the practical opportunity to change their bilateral arms
control regime for the better.

Summary by Elina Treyger, Junior Fellow with the Russian and Eurasian Program

1779 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20036
Phone 202-483-7600
Fax 202-483-1840


30 November, 2000
Statement by the Yabloko Faction of the State Duma
Leader of the Yabloko faction Grigory Yavlinsky
[translation for personal use only]

At the Duma session of November 29, the Yabloko faction voted unanimously
against the amendment that gives the heads of federation units the right to
run for a third term in office.

Our faction's deputies are well informed about the situation in some of the
regions whose governors would like to extend their mandates for a third
term. These governors have subordinated all branches of power de facto to
themselves, have suppressed independent media, and thus have guaranteed the
reelection for themselves no matter how many times they would run for

The Presidential Administration has shown weakness by succumbing to the
pressure of the presidents of Bashkortostan and Tatarstan, who announced
they were going to run for a third term no matter what the law says. Federal
officials were afraid of being unable to prevent this and of losing their
face. This means that the newly created mechanisms for managing federation
problems are not functioning. The reform of the federation has not
succeeded, the center cannot provide for an efficient control over the
actions of regional authorities and is thus acknowledging its own

Moreover, the draft law introduced by the President contradicts to the logic
of the Constitutional Court which ruled to count Boris Yeltsin's presidency
of 1991-1996 as his first term in office. In this context, the introduction
of this legislation can be considered as a trial balloon designed to gauge
the deputies' attitude to allowing President to run for office three times
instead of two.

Yabloko would like to emphasize that the number of votes in the State Duma
required for the passage of this legislation was obtained on a third
attempt, under harsh pressure by the Presidential Administration.
Regrettably, this style of relationship between the latter and the
parliament has become usual.

Both the legislation and the way it was adopted, together with a number of
earlier pronouncements and actions by top government officials give us
grounds for the following conclusion: the assault against the basic
principles of democracy that has been going on for more than a year is now
intensifying. We are resolved to resist this assault by every legal means
available to us.


Financial Times (UK)
2 December 2000
OFF CENTRE: Will the Russian bear roar again?: Charles Clover traces the
growing influence of the right theories of Alexander Dugin

It's the little things that betray Alexander Dugin as a formidable
mastermind of global empire. Maybe it's the pointy beard. Maybe it's the
habit of trilling his r's a little too heavily. Maybe it's that mellifluous
"very clever, Mr Bond" tone in his voice.

Maybe it's the maps he has lying around his Moscow office, showing the
Eurasian land-mass cluttered with an assortment of arrows, wedges,
cross-hatching, clamps, pincers and circles.

And maybe it's because he can't resist divulging his master plan: "In
principle, Eurasia and our space, the heartland, remain the staging area of
a new anti-bourgeois, anti-American revolution."

Only a few years ago, Dugin was considered a crackpot. He still is. But
today he is a "very well-read and prolific crackpot with a lot of
influence", according to Dmitri Trenin, defence analyst at the Carnegie
Moscow Centre, the mainstream think-tank.

Indeed, after a decade of cross-pollination between rightwing intellectuals
and Russia's military and political elite, Dugin's pet philo-sophy, an
obscure theory called geopolitics, has advanced to the outskirts of
mainstream thought in defence and foreign policy circles in Russia.

Geopolitics prophesies an eternal world conflict between land and sea, and
hence, Dugin believes, the US and Russia.

His 1997 book, The Basics of Geopolitics, advocated a rebirth of the Soviet
Union ("or the Russian Empire, or third Rome, or whatever you want to call
it," he says), and cementing a continental bloc of anti-American Eurasian
states that would oust US influence from the Eurasian land-mass.

According to his book: "The new Eurasian empire will be constructed on the
fundamental principle of the common enemy: the rejection of Atlanticism,
strategic control of the USA, and the refusal to allow liberal values to
dominate us. This common civilisational impulse will be the basis of a
political and strategic union."

And lately, Dugin has a spring in his step as events seem to back up his

Russia's president Vladimir Putin, for example, has a travel itinerary that
looks like some of the maps in Dugin's book.

One trip was to visit Moscow's one-time cold war ally India, where he
endorsed India's nuclear programme. India has been subject to US sanctions
after it tested five nuclear weapons in 1998.

Putin recently said Russia was ready for "a new phase" in relations with
another former cold war ally, Syria. Russia and China have lately been
trying to outdo each other in calling for a Sino-Soviet partnership with
echoes of the old cold war bloc.

Over the summer, Putin pursued overtures with North Korea, Libya and Iraq,
a sort of who's who of international pariahs.

Maybe "empire" is too strong a word, Dugin admits, but nevertheless, he
says: "Already, our recommendations are being implemented at very high
levels. I think as time goes by you will see that more and more of our
analysis is being used."

While the Kremlin insists its decisions are based on "pragmatism" rather
than obscure geopolitical theories, it concedes that its foreign policy has
undergone a momentous shift: a newly published set of foreign policy
guidelines put out by the Russian ministry of foreign affairs decries a
"strengthening tendency towards the formation of a unipolar world under
financial and military domination by the United States", and calls for a
"multipolar world order". It describes Russia's most important strength as
its "geopolitical position as the largest Eurasian state".

Dugin is quick to take part of the credit for these new guidelines, and at
first glance it might seem presumptuous. But when one examines the man and
his associates, the objections fade.

Take General-Lieutenant Nikolai Klokotov (ret), who held the chair of
strategy at Russia's Military Academy of the General Staff from 1988 to
1996. He is listed as a consultant for The Basics of Geopolitics.

Dugin has also been appointed a key adviser to Gennady Seleznyov, speaker
of the state Duma, Russia's lower house of parliament.

And while geopolitical theory was banned during Soviet times for its links
to Nazism, Russia's communist party has practically adopted the ideas for
its own. Gennady Zyuganov, communist party chairman, has published a primer
on geopolitics called Geography of Victory.

Russia's main military diplomat, General Leonid Ivashov, the head of the
international department at Russia's Ministry of Defence, and the
mastermind of Russia's takeover of the Pristina airport in Kosovo last
year, is one of the converts.

"The science of geopolitics has flourished in the post-communist period,
and this is a natural, healthy, objective response to circumstances," he

Ivashov's book on the subject, Russia and the World in the new Millennium,
borrows heavily from Dugin's work. He writes: "The experience of
geopolitical confrontation between Russia and the west is not limited to
the seven decades of the Soviet Union, but has a centuries-long tradition.

"Russia cannot exist outside of its essence as an empire, by its
geographical situation, historical path and fate of the state."

Says Ivashov: "The first democratic government of Russia looked at the US
as something like a donor, or as a strategic partner. This is a huge
misconception. Look at the actions behind the facade of public statements.
Read (Henry) Kissinger, read (Zbigniew) Brzezinski, you come to the
conclusion that, yes in some ways we are partners, but really we are
geopolitical rivals."

Dugin, by his own account, became interested in geopolitical theories in
the 1980s, after graduating from the Moscow Aviation Institute. At the
time, geopolitical works were banned in the Soviet Union because of the
theory's links to Nazism, so Dugin was considered a dissident. He read
voraciously and taught himself several languages.

In 1991, he joined the staff of the extremist newspaper Dyen, published by
Aleksander Prokhanov, known at the time as the "nightingale of the general
staff" for his close ties with Russia's top generals.

Soon after the failed military putsch in August 1991, Dugin left Dyen and
created his own magazine, Elementy, devoted to the philosophy of Europe's
new right. On its editorial board, were Alain de Benoist and Robert
Steukers, both noted new right intellectuals.

In 1992, a Moscow summit organised by Dugin and held at the headquarters of
Russia's military general staff brought together Russia's generals and
representatives of the new right movement, including de Benoist and Steukers.

The subject of discussion was the formation of an anti-US "continental
bloc" of Russia, Germany and France.

Dugin was "obviously very close to the military men", said de Benoist,
interviewed recently about the conference. He said he declined further
invitations after that conference, conceding, "we were very far apart

But the idea of a continental bloc - a Russian strategic alliance with
European and Asian states - has since then attracted a number of Russian
intellectuals, strategists and politicians.

Starting in the mid-1990s, Boris Yeltsin, Russia's then president, began
promoting the idea of a Moscow-Berlin-Paris "axis".

And senior Moscow foreign policy figures, beginning with former prime
minister Yevgeny Primakov, have devoted themselves to the celebration of
Count Aleksander Gorchakov, Russia's legendary 19th century foreign
minister who, following Russia's disastrous defeat in the Crimean war,
brought Russia back to greatness through an alliance with a newly united

The parallel with today has not been lost, as Putin travelled to Berlin in
June and described such a united Germany as "Russia's leading partner in
Europe and the world".

The overtures to Germany and more recently France echo the desire of many
in the Russian establishment to use a Franco-German-Russian partnership to
drive a wedge between the US and Europe, a project Germany and France show
little desire to assist - so far.

But that doesn't stop Dugin speculating about a "Eurasian axis" of Russia,
Germany, Iran and Japan.

"Of course, this will take some time," he concedes, and proposes to start
first with a much more manageable Eurasian axis of Russia, India and China
(according to his book it is well nigh impossible to have China and Japan
in the same Eurasian axis - you have to choose one or the other).

But, he says: "I am convinced that with Putin as president, the processes
of consolidating our geopolitical space is accelerating, and it is already
seen in Europe and Asia. Everything depends on whether it works. That is
the 21st century gamble."


Komsomolskaya Pravda
December 1, 20000
[translation from RIA Novosti for personal use only]
What the new reductions will do to the Russian armed forces
By Viktor BARANETS, Komsomolskaya Pravda military analyst
   The military reform was launched nine years ago, but
reductions are well nigh the only visible results, although the
theoretical substantiation for reductions is lame in both legs.
     Some State Duma deputies are advocating the provision
included in the first variant of the law "On Defence,"
according to which the strength of the army should equal 1% of
the national population (1.5 million).
     Others suggested using the European experience, where the
number of servicemen is calculated per 1 square kilometre of
territory. Although these debates are not over, the top brass
have been ordered to continue reductions. The armed forces were
slashed from 2.75 million in 1992 to 1.2 million in 2000 (see
Table), and they say this is not the limit. What will the
country and its defences gain from new reductions?
                   How Many Troops Do We Need?
     A 820,000-strong army. Is it big or small? The figure
roughly equals 0.4% of the national population of 147 million.
But this is clearly not enough for a country that spans 11 time
zones, has direct access to two oceans and a large number of
seas, stands on one-fourth of the world's dry land, and has the
longest land border on the planet, which it cannot reliably
protect even now. The number of surface ships and submarines
that patrol the seas has been slashed by nearly 80%.
     Experts say that the forthcoming reduction of the armed
forces to 820,000 is well below the critical line in conditions
of existing and potential military threats to Russia. We can
confidently assume that certain countries would attempt to use
force in order to resolve old territorial disputes with Russia
- with a view to snatching Russian regions that abound in
energy resources.
                Not Enough Money for the Reform
     Independent experts say the planned budgetary allocations
in 2001 will barely suffice to slightly raise remuneration to
career officers, repay state debts to them that have been
accumulating since 1998, pay the required sums to retiring
officers, finance the endless counter-terrorist operation (6-8
billion roubles), and build or purchase housing for 13-15%
homeless officers.
     Other requirements include allocations on the defence
order and the purchase of some 10 tanks, four aircraft and two
helicopters, and the completion of the construction of two
submarines (provided that there is enough money left in the
budget). And what about giant spending on the conservation and
utilisation of military hardware of the slashed units?
                 Where Will the Servicemen Go?
     Military law-enforcement offices say over 500 commissioned
and warrant officers of the army and the navy could not survive
the military reform and committed suicide in the past eight
years, and around 100 of them did this when they could not find
a place under the civilian sun.
     In all, Russia has slashed its army by 1.550 million in
the past years, including by 650,000 commissioned and warrant
officers aged 25 to 50. According to parliamentary, government
and public agencies involved in the social adjustment of
retired servicemen, only 25-30% of them found stable jobs with
the help of various retraining centres. The rest joined the
ranks of the vast army of jobless and survive on temporary

           The Dynamics of Army Reductions (1992-2003)
     1992               2.750 million
     1994               2.450 million (minus 300,000)
     1996               1.950 million (minus 600,000)
     1998               1.450 million (minus 500,000)
     1999               1.250 million (minus 200,000)
     2000               1.200 million (minus 50,000)

     2001               1.000 million (minus 200,000)
     2002               900,000-920,000 (minus 80,000-100,000)
     2003               850,000-820,000 (minus 70,000-100,000)
                 Arguments in Favour of Reductions
     Specialists of the General Staff think a 850,000-strong
army would suffice for Russia, on three conditions: if it is
fully professional, excellently armed, and well financed. The
current budgetary allocations would not be enough to maintain a
1.2-million-strong army in conditions of military reform, let
alone raise the remuneration of men and officers. This means
that we should continue reductions. Structural changes in the
armed forces are impossible without reducing troops, including
generals (there are over 300 "surplus" generals in the army
     Here is what the military think on this score.
     Colonel-General Eduard VOROBYOV, member of the Duma
defence committee:
     I support the decision of the Security Council on reducing
troops... We came to the conclusion gradually, by making
mistakes, that the time is ripe for radical changes in the
armed forces and that they should be launched without delay.
     Vice-Admiral Vladimir VALUYEV, acting commander of the
Baltic Fleet:
     I think the planned reductions are justified. In view of
modern technologies and weapons, the current strength of the
army is not justified. Russia has powerful weapons that can be
used to repel any attack.
     Colonel-General Yuri BALUYEVSKY, head of the Main
Operational Directorate of the General Staff:
     The forthcoming reduction of the army and the navy by
365,000 servicemen and 120,000 civilians will concern all
current arms and the Airborne Force. The military leaders are
taking measures to ensure that the better combat ready troops,
meaning the Airborne Force, be freed from the fulfilment of
peacekeeping tasks that are not basic for them. Reductions will
concern mostly those officers who are on the verge of
completing their service.


CDI Russia Weekly:

Johnson's Russia List Archive (under construction):


Return to CDI's Home Page  I  Return to CDI's Library