Russian Readiness Reassured?
Reform is coming to the Russian Army:
Russia is moving ahead to establish a Western style military reserve system, composed of troops who are fully trained to begin with, are regularly refresh that training, and are capable of being quickly mobilized and operating as effectively as full time troops. This is a big departure from over a century of using less well trained reservists. The new system is supposed to be ready in three years and will look similar to the reserve system currently used in the United States and other Western nations. Rebuilding their reserve system is an attempt to revive the Russian “secret army” that long drove foreign intelligence analysts nuts because it was difficult to ascertain just how good these reserve troops were. During the Cold War it was known that the first Soviet secret army (that was mobilized to stop the 1941 German invasion) was not as good as the Soviet leadership believed but was good enough to halt the German advance. After the Cold War ended in 1991, and a lot of secrets were briefly available from the wreckage of the Soviet Union, it was discovered that the Cold War era secret army was more of a shambles than the pre-1941 one was. This time, the Russians are determined to do it right.
It would be better for everyone if Moscow manages to get it right this time. Currently, the only sure way Russia has to defend its borders is with its nuclear arsenal, and that's just a dangerously unstable position for a world power.
Or for anyone, really.