This book, first published in 1985, is the first full-length study of the Soviet Armed Forces as a social institution. Using military manpower as a substantive focus, it identifies those characteristics that the Soviet military shared with counterparts in non-communist systems and those that were unique to the society and political culture in which it was embedded. The discussion encompasses defence policy-making as a whole and focuses on conscription policy, the characteristics of the professional military, the role of the political officer, the mechanics of political socialization within the Red Army, and the experience of ethnic minorities in the armed forces. This analysis provides a window through which we can observe the broader military system at work; how that system affects, and in turn is affected by, the economic, social and political life of the Soviet Union. It contributes to our understanding of civil-military relations in communist systems and to our knowledge of Soviet political and social trends.
Table of Contents
1. National Defence Policymaking 2. Soviet Military Manpower Policy 3. Soviet Conscription Policy: the Citizen Soldier in an Authoritarian State 4. The Professional Soldier: Career Military in a Conscript Army 5. The Soviet Political Officer 6. The Military as an Agent for Political Socialization 7. Minorities in Uniform 8. The Armed Forces in Contemporary Soviet Society