Russia´s ruler Vladimir Putin has announced a huge military build-up:
"Within the next decade, the armed forces will receive more than 400 modern ground- and sea-based intercontinental ballistic missiles, eight ballistic missile submarines, about 20 general purpose attack submarines, over 50 surface ships and some 100 military-purpose spacecraft," Putin wrote in a new article for the Rossiiskaya Gazeta government daily.
He said the number will also include "over 600 modern aircraft, including fifth-generation fighters, more than a thousand helicopters, 28 regimental sets of S-400 (SA-21 Growler) surface-to-air missile systems, 38 division sets of Vityaz air defense systems, 10 brigade sets of Iskander-M (SS-26 Stone) tactical missile systems, more than 2,300 modern tanks, some 2,000 self-propelled artillery systems and guns, as well as more than 17,000 military vehicles".
At the same poverty in Russia grows faster than expected:
The number of impoverished people in Russia has increased by 2.3 million and made up 22.9 million in one year, the Russian Federal Statistics Agency said. Many experts believe that official statistics does not reflect the real state of affairs and is very often undervalued. Therefore, it means that the number of the poor in the country grows much faster.
One would think that the Russian Orthodox Church is worried about the fast growing poverty in the country. That does not seem to be the case, however. Instead the church, upholding its traditonal policy of co-operation with the KGB and the Soviet establishment, is openly supporting Vladimir Putin´s megalomaniac rearmament programme, and it even promises to participate in a planned programme of military training in schools!
Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin, the head of the church's department for relations with society, who has openly welcomed the prospect of Putin returning to the Kremlin, had this to say about the new rearmament programme:
The Russian Orthodox Church says it fully supports Vladimir Putin’s initiatives on military reform and also rejects the allegations that the church is an intrinsically pacifist organization.
The cleric also highly valued the part of the article where Putin suggested more attention be paid to military and patriotic training in schools and, being a Church representative, expressed the readiness to take part in this process.
Chaplin also pointed out that in his article Putin gave the correct assessment of the current international situation and the challenges that Russia is facing.
“One cannot but agree with words that the instability zones are currently appearing in the world,the zones of artificially heated and controlled chaos and one can observe targeted attempts to create such zones near Russia’s borders and the borders of our allies,” Chaplin noted.