The ”Indestructible and Legendary“ Army at the End of the Soviet Era

The ”Indestructible and Legendary“ Army at the End of the Soviet Era

Obraztsov I.V.

Dr. Sci. (Sociol.), Prof., the Department of Sociology, Head of Sociological Laboratory, Moscow State Linguistic University, Moscow, Russia

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Obraztsov I.V. The ”Indestructible and Legendary“ Army at the End of the Soviet Era. Sotsiologicheskie issledovaniya [Sociological Studies]. 2022. No 11. P. 123-134


The Armed Forces were a pillar of the USSR political regime and the military security. By the end of its existence, they experienced all the consequences of the soviet socio-political system deformation and needed to the reformed. The key issues in discussions about military reform where the optimization of the armed forces size to the limits of “reasonable sufficiency”, their professionalization and elimination of political control by the ruling party. And if the reduction in Army and Navy Forces weakened the economic burden, and the recruitment of military formations on the principles of volunteerism eliminated the problem of “dedovshcina” (“hazing”), then the departisation and depoliticitzation of power structures broke the soviet basic ideologies. Based on the analysis of relatively unknown results of sociological studies, the author aims at finding why the attempts to make the armed forces “the last stronghold of Soviet statehood” failed.

the collapse of the Soviet Union; armed forces; army; military reform; military sociology; social problems


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