A. Serdyukov’s dismissal was predictable

On November 6, the Russian President Vladimir Putin has dismissed Minister of Defense Anatoly Serdyukov from office, and Sergei Shoigu is authorized to take command of the Ministry.


The dismissal was predictable - it was only a matter of time. Failures in defense reform and corruption scandals like the one that was disclosed in the "Oboronservis", cause great damage to the image of the power. But most importantly, they cause harm, reducing national defense capacity. Serdyukov was deeply unpopular among active military personnel, retirees, and society in general.

The reason for this situation was Serdyukov’s incompetence, who served mainly as an average manager, which is unacceptable in the military industry. Whatever he did, whatever decision he made, it was perceived negatively in any case. Moreover, the lack of non-departmental (public) control induced corruption.

Military servicemen of the country believe that the country needs effective professionals, rather than effective managers. In fact, in the Soviet time party officials often were in command of public enterprises and even industries, and their incompetent management of the country has led to its collapse. Today, new managers, whose understanding of the current outstanding issues is poor, are acting as those party officials in their worst role.

I expect from Sergei Shoigu a more rational and less wasteful continuation of reforms. He will cope with the liabilities of the defense minister, certainly better than Serdyukov did. In terms of the situation awareness and in view of what he was able to do over the years, Shoigu has great merits for this assignment.

There is no doubt that Shoigu can cope also with defense orders, which proper performance was impeded earlier. I believe it is possible to establish adequate partnership relations between the state customer and defense suppliers, if corrupt officials are taken under control.

V.I. Tsymbal, Dr. of Science (Engineering), principal researcher, Economics of the Military-Industrial Sector Department