Today’s Argumenty nedeli cites an unnamed Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU) representative who says a decision to cut GRU personnel by 50 percent has been ‘frozen’ for an indefinite period. According to the article, the decision on the cut was made recently within the bounds of Defense Minister Serdyukov’s reform of the military.
Serdyukov and General Staff Chief Makarov were going to announce the elimination of several GRU ‘sub-units’ in the first half of March. But GRU Chief General-Lieutenant Aleksandr Shlyakhturov managed to convince the country’s highest leadership not to take these steps yet.
Argumenty nedeli noted that three GRU Spetsnaz brigades–the 67th in Berdsk, 12th in Asbest, and 3rd in Samara–were disbanded last year. It maintains that now even the part of the GRU that works with ‘secret agents’ abroad has fallen ‘under the knife.’
As to whether the top echelon believes this would seriously weaken the country’s defense capability, the article says we’ll have to wait and see.