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A Military History of Russia: From Ivan the Terrible to the by David Stone

By David Stone

This ebook brings to mild Russia's undeservedly-obscure army earlier, rectifying the tendency of yank and Western army historians to forget the Russian part of items. Russia, as either a Western and non-Western society, demanding situations our puzzling over Western army superiority. Russia has consistently struggled with backwardness compared to extra constructed powers, at a few instances extra effectively than others. The imperatives of survival in a aggressive overseas surroundings have, in addition, produced in Russian society a excessive measure of militarization. whereas together with operational and tactical aspect that appeals to army background lovers, this publication concurrently integrates army background into the wider subject matters of Russian heritage and attracts comparisons to advancements in Europe. The ebook additionally demanding situations previous assumptions concerning the Russian army. Russian army background can't be summed up easily in one inventory word, no matter if perennial incompetence or good fortune simply via stolid, stoic safeguard; it additionally exhibits a number of examples of outstanding offensive successes.

Stone strains Russia's interesting army heritage, and its lengthy fight to grasp Western army know-how with no Western social and political associations. It covers the army dimensions of the emergence of Muscovy, the disastrous reign of Ivan the bad, and the following construction of the recent Romanov dynasty. It bargains with Russia's emergence as a good strength below Peter the nice and culminating within the defeat of Napoleon. After that triumph, the booklet argues, Russia's social and fiscal stagnation undermined its huge, immense army energy and taken catastrophic defeat within the Crimean conflict. The e-book then covers imperial Russia's lengthy fight to reform its army laptop, with combined ends up in the Russo-Japanese struggle and global conflict I. The Russian Revolution created a brand new Soviet Russia, yet this booklet indicates the continuity throughout that divide. The Soviet Union's interwar strategies and its harrowing adventure in global warfare II owed a lot to imperial Russian precedents. A superpower after the warfare, the Soviet Union's army could was once bought on the cost of constant financial backwardness. ironically, the very militarization meant to supply safety in its place destroyed the Soviet Union, leaving a brand new Russia in the back of the West economically. simply as there has been loads of continuity after 1917, this ebook demonstrates how the recent Russian army has inherited lots of its present difficulties from its Soviet predecessor. the fee that Russia has paid for its endured life as an exceptional energy, accordingly, is the overpowering militarization of its society and financial system, a scenario it maintains to fight with.

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Additional resources for A Military History of Russia: From Ivan the Terrible to the War in Chechnya (Praeger Security International)

Sample text

The long-besieged fortress of Smolensk had its walls breached and was finally taken by storm by the Poles in June. In July, Swedish forces, whose alliance had been with the now-deposed Shuiskii, captured Novgorod by stealth, allowed through a gate by a treacherous resident. The gentry and cossacks of the nascent anti-Polish movement tore themselves apart with feuds and assassinations. Even after all these disasters, the national movement was not finished. Allegiance to Orthodoxy and resentment of foreigners were still strong, strong enough to serve as the bedrock of a resurgent Russia.

Immediately afterwards, he announced the division of Muscovy into two separate jurisdictions: the oprichnina under his direct rule and the zemshchina under the boyar duma. This meant two armies, two administrations, and enormous chaos. Ivan used his new powers over the oprichnina to redistribute land and create a private army of enforcers and executioners. These oprichniki rode Muscovy in black robes on black horses, carrying dogs’ heads and brooms as symbols of their intent to sniff out and sweep away disloyalty and treason.

Unable to breach the city’s formidable fortifications, he settled his army in June 1608 at Tushino, just north of the city. The war had shifted from cossack uprising to Polish intervention, but was no closer to resolution. The Second False Dmitrii’s siege of Moscow brought another stalemate. He was unable to capture Moscow and eliminate Shuiskii; Shuiskii could not defeat the pretender. This created two separate governments. The south was entirely out of control after years of rebellion; the pretender seized the still relatively prosperous north to strip it of resources; Shuiskii The Time of Troubles 27 controlled Moscow and some territory in eastern Muscovy but little else.

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