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​The UK Defense Intelligence: New Intake at russian General Staff Academy Signals Shift Towards Combat-Experienced Leadership

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Captured russian soldiers / Photo credit: Maksym Zhorin, Censor.Net
Captured russian soldiers / Photo credit: Maksym Zhorin, Censor.Net

A new generation of russian officers with extensive combat experience is poised to take the reins of the country’s military

On December 1, 2023, a new intake of russian officers started their studies at the russian General Staff Academy. The russian MOD announced that over 60% of the intake has combat experience. Although it was not specified, the majority have likely gained this experience in Ukraine since 2022, the UK Defense Intelligence reports.

Students at the academy typically rank between Major and General-Major (equivalent to a one-star General in the NATO system) and are earmarked as having the potential for senior command.

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A new generation of russian officers with extensive combat experience is poised to take the reins of the country’s military Defense Express The UK Defense Intelligence: New Intake at russian General Staff Academy Signals Shift Towards Combat-Experienced Leadership
A new generation of russian officers with extensive combat experience is poised to take the reins of the country’s military / open source

While a high proportion of some specialists, such as pilots, deployed on operations in Syria, the Ukraine war means combat experience is now more widespread across this mid-level cadre of russian officers. Over the coming years, this generation is likely to exert major influence over the future direction of russia’s military and whether it implements lessons learned from the war in Ukraine.

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