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“Although there were failures, but this is a well-trained commander”: How the new chief of the General Staff of the Ground Forces Alexander Lapin will help the Russian army

Colonel General Alexander Lapin.  Photo: Egor Aleev / TASS

Colonel General Alexander Lapin. Photo: Egor Aleev / TASS

Colonel General Alexander Lapin, who led the group “Center” during a special operation, he was appointed chief of the General Staff of the Ground Forces. This was reported TASS, citing sources in the Russian Ministry of Defense. In this position, Lapin will be responsible for combat training and rearmament of the Ground Forces. Including – participating in a special military operation.

Lapin’s appointment goes beyond the usual personnel work by the fact that last autumn, after the withdrawal of Russian troops from Red Estuary, the colonel-general was subjected to serious criticism. Including the fact that interaction between units was allegedly not organized in this direction, the supply of ammunition was disrupted, and the fighters did not have the necessary means of communication. At the end of October, the media reported that Alexander Lapin had been removed from his post. However, according to other sources, Lapin went on vacation.

However, the current appointment shows that the leadership’s claims to Alexander Lapin, if any, are not so serious. Perhaps, after the debriefing, it turned out that the failures that Lapin was accused of were the result of some objective factors that Lapin was not able to influence.

At the same time, there were no complaints about the service of the colonel-general. Rather, on the contrary: it was under his leadership that Lysichansk was liberated and the Armed Forces of Ukraine were completely driven out of the territory of the LPR. Recall that Lisichansk is a city on a hill, many considered it an impregnable fortress. However, thanks to the maneuvers of the Russian troops, the Nazis were squeezed out of it almost without a fight. On July 4, as a result of this operation, Lapin, among others, was awarded the title of Hero of Russia.

Prior to the start of the NMD, Alexander Lapin already had experience of commanding in combat conditions: in 2017 he was the chief of staff of the group of Russian troops in Syria, and from the fall of 2018 to the beginning of 2019 he headed this group. Before Syria and after returning from this trip, Alexander Lapin commanded the troops of the Central Military District. And even earlier, he was chief of staff of the Eastern Military District and served as commander of the 20th Guards Combined Arms Army. In general, Lapin does not lack experience. Apparently, the command of the Russian Armed Forces considered that this experience could be useful in the current conditions.

– Lapin has unconditional advantages, – he said on the air radio “Komsomolskaya Pravda” military expert, member of the Izborsk club Vladislav Shurygin. – This is a military general who actively participated in hostilities for six months. And at the same time he achieved significant success. There were also failures, but, nevertheless, this is a well-trained commander who will be extremely in demand in a new place.

According to Shurygin, the chief of staff is a key position. Traditionally, in the Russian, Soviet, Russian army, after the commander, this is the second person. And if the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces is the brain of the army, then all the decisions that are made in the General Staff are implemented by the headquarters of the types and branches of the troops.

– The headquarters of the ground forces during the hostilities is primarily responsible for the training of troops, – says Vladislav Shurygin. – And also for how the reserves are formed, how they are trained, how military schools work. The entire structure that provides the units of the ground forces participating in the battles. The Main Headquarters of the Ground Forces has a Combat Training Directorate, there is an intelligence directorate – there are a lot of structures there that are responsible for ensuring that the fighters of the Ground Forces are doing well at the front.

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