Russian defense minister fired

It’s election day in the U.S., but we already know one politician in Russia who will not have to wait to see the results of any exit polls before packing his office into a cardboard box.

Russian President Vladimir V. Putin fired his defense minister Tuesday following a corruption investigation involving ministry land near Moscow. It was a rare move for Putin to move against a confidant despite the mounting charges against Anatoly E. Serdyukov.

Putin commended Serdyukov for his work even though the defense minister had few supporters inside the military as he has worked to slash the back log of generals at the top of the Russian military’s ranks.

Putin said Serdyukov’s removal was required to allow police to continue their investigation. Police could not do their work if Serdyukov remained in his position.

Serdyukov has served a vital role in the export of Russian military technology to nations such as India and China. In October, he announced a partnership with India for the Indian military to start production of the Sukhoi’s T-50 stealth fighter. Russia is currently testing the stealth fighter that Serdyukov has said will perform better than the U.S. F-22.

Russia’s defense minister also helped ensure Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime continued to receive weapons from Russia throughout their ongoing fight with Syrian rebels. However, a decision with that level of international attention was surely made by Putin.

Putin has announced he will replace Serdyukov with another close ally, Sergei Shoigu.

About the Author

Michael Hoffman
Michael Hoffman is the executive editor at Tandem NSI and a contributor to He can be reached at
  • BlackOwl18E

    In America, you lose the job. In Mother Russia, the job loses you!

    • Davidz

      Wow, that actually makes sense.

      • BlackOwl18E

        Made that up on the spot. ;)

  • blight_

    Between being unable to fire ministers for being incompetence or corruption and at least being able to fire them for corruption…

    • sam

      I think the simple answer is he stepped on the wrong peoples toes, and inn the past the wrong person lined the right peoples pockets.

  • Stratege

    The T-50/PAK-FA IS NOT co produced aircraft. It’s domestic Russian fighter jet!
    “T-50” is an internal designation of the Sukhoi design bureau.

    • Lance

      But the Russian cutting cost joins India to produce it.

    • TimUk

      So they can produce a rival to teh f22/Typhoon/JSF for a tenth ? Despite their corruption and disastrous organization ?

      These jets will have stealth barely better than a Typhoon with avionics and radar no where near as capable.

      • So?

        Typhoon: giant vertical rudder, mechanically scanned radar, external weapons (and fuel to get any semblance of range) carriage just scream 5th gen.

  • Noha307

    *Sees the words “Putin” and “corruption investigation” in the same sentence*
    Me: Oh good, finally!
    *Reads closer, realizes investigation is not of Putin*
    Me: WTF?
    *Reads even closer, realizes Putin removed the government official under investigation*
    Me: *Bursts out laughing*

  • Lance

    Overall This might not be about corruption. As much as under this man they lost some BIG arms deals look at India they lost the Mi-28 to the AH-64D for the Indian army. Same again yesterday the Mi-26 lost to the CH-47. Don’t make money in the new Russia your history.

    • Lance

      Like the cool Stechkin pistol Putin is holding.

    • blight_

      Re the Mi-26, the Indians already had ’em and decided to switch. Perhaps they know something we don’t. That said, we contracted Haloes to recover a downed Chinook at high alts in Afghanistan.

      An article regarding the contract win is

      That said, the bid is for fifteen helicopters. The Soviets have no production of the Halo, or very limited production. The Chinook support is out there and presumably the line is open, so economies of scale favors the Chinook.

      Re the Havoc, the Havoc was supposed to be fitted with European avionics onto a Russian helicopter. What a mess. Apache shows up, systems integrated and tested/debugged by the United States…even if they are lesser export grade. Probably cheaper, who could say no?

      Hilariously, Iraq might be procuring some Havocs…

      • Lance

        Doubt that may purchases more Mi-35s from Russia since they had so much experience with them.

        • blight_

          -35’s are Hinds, and if they’re going Apache it means they’re denigrating the transport gunship. High altitude performance suffers when you have to armor your helicopter transport to fight, have it carry weapons and eight people. In Afghanistan, they often didn’t carry full loads…or were used empty to escort Hips.

          Not all of India’s helicopter needs will have to perform at high altitude, but enough will in the event Pakistan decides to not play nice.

  • Hunter76

    We should get George W Bush to interpret this, since he was able to look into Putin’s soul.

    • Bman

      Ole G.W. would not be worried about “after the election” as Obama was. Putin has been a mad man since George left office. Must have been fearing George would rape him of his soul. ha ha ha

  • TimUk

    I wonder what percentage of the Russian Defence budget ends up in Switzerland ? I love all these idiots raving about paper russian “stealth” 5th gen jets.

    The russian military is broken and incapable of defending its borders never mind projecting power , the only element Putin is really interested is the Nuclear force.

    A nation destroyed by Putin and his gang of scum.

    • blight_

      Yeltsin had a golden opportunity to do a gentle transition to the free market system (like China); and did a miserable job of it. The usual robber barons privatizing state property for cash always get out ahead, but conditions did not materially improve for the Russians.

      Without the SSR, it exposed that Russia was very dependent on them for resources. Ukraine, Poland and Kazhakstan probably kept the USSR going longer than it could have.

      • So?

        GDP (PPP) per capita is now higher in Russia than the other former Soviet republics (Baltics excepted, but they were always an exception).

    • steve

      Hold on folks OBama will join Putin very fast, now that he has bought and paid for the next four years to accomplish his “original agenda”!!!!! Putin for the Communists while OBama for the Moslems and Muslims………

    • GUest

      Tim, trust me it’s not going to Switzerland as much as all over the Med, try Cyprus for instance….

  • TonyC

    Perhaps the Russian military should look at the physical demands made on the pilot before stating the T-50 will perform better than the F-22A. Seems that the pilot is the limiting factor inte F-22A flight envelope. The same will be true for the T-50. The F-22A and F-35 series will be the last pure manned fighter aircraft in teh US inventory.

  • ziv

    I shoot a good bit, and I have to admit I have never seen anyone wear their ear protection upside down. I looked at it a time or two and each time I came to the same conclusion.
    It must suck to be surrounded by Yes-men that don’t have the backbone to say, “Boss, that looks really stupid! Fix your ear protector before the photographers get here!”

    • blight_

      He might’ve pulled it down to make himself look like a rebel for the camera. Wearing ear protection upright is too proper, to normal for burly ex-KGB bear-wrestling prime ministers /lul

      • ziv

        blight, I think that is exactly why he did it. He has a history of silly macho stunts and this is just one more attempt to look young, strong and hip. And it looks funny as h***. That having been said, a lot of the Russians I spoke to loved him in 2002 and 2005 when I was visiting there. “Anyone but that drunken Yeltsin” was what they were saying back then, not sure what they would say now.

        • blight_

          Putin is in the running for Dos Equis man…

  • Mark

    Does any of this matter?

    With Obama re-elected – you can kiss our country good bye.

    • TimUk

      Ridiculous ! America still has a military that destroy the rest of the world thrice over, owns hi-tech,the internet. Finance along with the UK, Controls Space , will be energy independent in 10 years and has no water supply issues.

      Forget China and India there demographics are a nightmare , your only real threat is if somehow lonny tune Russia got rid of Putin and its xenophobic attutides nd joined the European Union. The German Industrial Machine and Russian Resources would be USA Version2 . Highly unlikely so stop with the USA doom and gloom. Sort the budget and avoid letting Israel run up a trillion dollar bill for you by bombing Iran !

      • Timuk

        Typos oh Typos , apologies in middle of 3hr c-call with a bunch of nerds !

        • blight_

          Even a sub-union within the European Union would be an interesting powerhouse. UK, France, Germany. Not sure if you want to incorporate the Baltic states, but they’re relatively stable, and as long as the North Sea still has oil, financially solvent.

  • Ross

    ah every four years its republican doom and gloom fearmongering. What on earth does the US presidential election have to do with Tsar Putin sacking one of his possy?

    • Mark

      The Gloom is in the White House.

      The Doom is the average brain dead voter – such as yourself.

      • dubya

        Yeah Brain Dead Voter like you who voted Dubya to the White House… TWICE!

        • Mark

          I hope you like a Hugo Chavez clone – because he’s in the White House.


  • Tiger

    What is Putin Packing by the way? I’m not up on Russian pistols.

    • intheend

      It’s a Stechkin machine-pistol; basically an overgrown Makarov with full-auto capability.

      • ziv

        Seriously? Full auto? With that handgun? Why bother! The third shot would be so far from where you were originally aiming that it would be pointless.
        I hate to be rude but it sounds like Putin is overcompensating for shortcomings by going super macho.

  • Joe

    That looks like James bond in the making. Starring Putin.