Russia is now in the middle of a profound, if poorly conceptualized and under-financed, transformation of its Armed Forces.
Is a massive economic crisis a good time to launch a thorough military reform?
To push everything through, President Medvedev will have to take responsibility for difficult decisions with consequences he cannot fully comprehend. This inevitably puts him in a vulnerable position as discontent grows in the military ranks and the 2012 Russian presidential elections loom on the horizon. As Mikhail Gorbachev learned in the 1990s Perestroika has an unfortunate tendency to discredit its initiators, even if it does not devour them.