chapter  5
19 Pages

The Changing Defense Posture of the USSR

WithSergey Rogov

The relaxation of international tensions, the ending of the Cold War, and the movement toward a new, cooperative, security system allow and indeed demand an early military reform in the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. The end of the Cold War changed the basis for the relations between the Soviet Union and the West, The Cold War was in essence an ideological conflict, growing from mutual delegitimization—"the struggle between socialism and capitalism." Military reform has become unavoidable because of internal political and economic pressures and also because of a fundamental change in the Soviet security posture. The non-convertibility of the ruble complicates the comparison of Soviet and American defense expenditures. The Soviet press is full of "horror stories" about the situation the services face. The Soviet military buildup has given the highest priority to quantitative factors, while often ignoring quality.