Unknown Troops of an Extinct Superpower

[Conclusion to article by Colonel General (Retired) Yuriy Vsevolodovich Votintsev under rubric "Memoirs and Essays" for previous parts see VOYENNO-ISTORICHESKIY ZHURNAL, Nos 8, 9 and 10, 1993]

Space Monitoring System

The creation of ballistic missiles with nuclear warheads in the late 1940's in the United States and then also in the USSR predetermined the possibility and even the necessity of using space as a new theater of warfare. The 1950's were the beginning of an intense rivalry between the USSR and United States that was constantly being forced in developing space, and those years were a struggle for supremacy there.

Following our first artificial Earth satellite, launched on 4 October 1957, the United States put its own into orbit. This happened on 1 February 1958. Yu. A. Gagarin made the first revolution about the Earth in the Vostok spacecraft on 12 April 1961, and U.S. astronaut J. Glenn did so in Mercury on 20 February 1962.

New, complex scientific-technical problems arose in connection with the precisely predicted rapid subsequent development of space.

First of all, as space became filled with objects that accompanied satellite launches (booster rockets, fairings, various fragments and so on), the threat to the safety of manned craft grew. This required creating a reliable space monitoring system which could ensure receiving prompt, precise information. It was extremely dangerous to postpone the solution to this problem to subsequent years, since the complexity of "inventorying" space was growing annually literally in geometric progression. Evidently the U.S. Defense Department also was guided by these same considerations; in the late 1950's and early 1960's it decided to set up a national space monitoring system, SPADATS, using radar and electro-optical equipment located both on U.S. territory as well as at certain military bases outside the United States.

Secondly, already at that time the need was being considered for developing and creating a space defense system capable of engaging military targets. In connection with this, demands on the space monitoring system arose for identifying and issuing to the space defense system precise target designations on probable enemy targets which could be assigned for engagement in space.

The idea of building a space monitoring system in our country was formalized once and for all in the summer of 1963. It was then that A. L. Gorelik,1 chief of a department of SNII [Special Scientific Research Institute], and N. P. Buslenko, deputy chief of this Institute, headed up a team of specialists and developed a preliminary design of the space monitoring system. It was approved and specified as leading for the space monitoring system by decision of the VPK [Military Industrial Commission]. A new administration was formed, the first chief of which became Ye. M. Oshanin. Chiefs of the administration in subsequent years were O. A. Chembrovskiy, A. D. Kurlanov2 and Yu. A. Didenko.

From the very beginning, the detection and tracking of space objects was accomplished by optical observation posts deployed by the ABM and Space Defense Troops and located in various regions of the country with consideration of the most favorable geophysical conditions for operation, especially at night. Under a coordinated plan, electro-optical stations of the USSR Academy of Sciences Astrosovet [Astronomical Council] also were included in the work. Doctor of Technical Sciences V. I. Kuryshev,3 head of a chair of Ryazan Pedagogic Institute, was one of the founders and enthusiasts of this work. His textbooks and methods are being used to this day for training data processing specialists.

A conceptual design of the space monitoring system was developed and approved in 1965. It was realized directly by the collective of the administration, which was directed from 1966 in the Special SRI by A. D. Kurlanov. Programs supporting the detection, tracking, and identification of satellites were created and the foundation of the Main Catalogue of Space Objects was laid down on the basis of the Institute's computer equipment.

The Dnestr radar in Kazakhstan became the first specialized radiotechnical station performing space monitoring missions. It was tested in 1967 by a commission chaired by Marshal of Artillery Yu. P. Bazhanov.4

In 1968 Lieutenant General I. P. Pisarev,5 chief of staff of ABM and Space Defense Troops, successfully conducted tests of a space monitoring radar system consisting of eight Dnestr radars. They were situated in Kazakhstan and Siberia, forming a continuous "barrier" stretching for 5,000 km at altitudes up to 3,000 km. The DSP-1Yu satellite was launched especially for adjusting the radars and confirming the characteristics specified for them. Yu. V. Polyak was chief designer of this system and also of the Dnestr radar in its makeup.

The Space Monitoring Center was being created at accelerated rates from 1965 in one of the areas of Podmoskovye. Three years later General Designer V. S. Burtsev's 5E-51 computer already was functioning there and a combat program developed in the Special SRI had been loaded into it.

But officers and warrant officers at the Space Monitoring Center were performing the bulk of calculations manually as if from inertia. It was necessary to meet with them several times in order to convince them and prove the need for automatic data processing. Gradually the work was adjusted. A deciding role was played by a team of young officers, recent graduates of the Kiev Higher Engineering Radiotechnical School of Air Defense, who underwent serious training on the space monitoring system in the Special SRI. Having been transferred to the Space Monitoring Center, it was they together with I. G. Sergeyev6 who facilitated the introduction of scientifically substantiated methods of combat work and operation of the automated weapon system.

The first phase of the Space Monitoring Center was placed on alert duty in 1970.

By this time six U.S. military systems already were functioning permanently in space: intelligence (detailed photoreconnaissance and radiotechnical and electro-optical reconnaissance), ballistic missile launch and nuclear explosion detection, navigational, weather, topogeodetic and communications. Each one consisted of several craft. In addition, there were research and commercial communications satellites, not to mention a large number of our own satellites. There were literally thousands of fragments and pieces along with them at an altitude up to 2,000 km, right down to nuts and bolts of the final stages of booster rockets and broken-up satellites. The monitoring task was to reliably detect, identify and track with high accuracy in this chaos the domestic and foreign satellites with operating equipment.

The Space Monitoring Center became operational in 1972. The Center's program-algorithm system and its interface with data sources and consumers had been developed, introduced and tested by Special SRI scientists V. I. Mudrov, B. N. Ananyev, A. V. Krylov, A. I. Nazarenko, Yu. P. Gorokhov and G. A. Sokolov. The situation in space continued to get more complicated. It became obvious that the radar field being created only by eight Dnestr radars was ineffective as an information means. In 1974 P. F. Batitskiy, CIC of National Air Defense Forces, made the proposal to assign further improvement of the space monitoring system to V. G. Repin, chief designer of the missile attack warning system, who already had positive experience behind him of interfacing the ABM defense system's Dunay-3 and Dunay-3U early warning radars with the missile attack warning system command post. This was approved by the Ministry of the Radio Industry, General Staff and Military Industrial Commission. V. I. Markov, deputy minister of the Radio Industry and general director of the giant Vympel OKB [Special Design Bureau], which possessed powerful scientific-technical and production potentials, took up development of the space monitoring system.

Repin and his deputies A. A. Kuriksha7 and Yu. S. Ochkasov8 technically substantiated and made the proposal for connecting all radar complexes of the missile attack warning system and ABM defense to the Space Monitoring Center, which fundamentally influenced the effectiveness of information capacities of the space monitoring system using equipment already created.

But the Space Monitoring Center was operating in its own system of coordinates different from the missile attack warning system and ABM defense. Again the task arose of substantially modifying combat programs while fulfilling requirements of not removing radiotechnical complexes from a state of combat readiness. The reasons for such a situation already were mentioned, but I will repeat that one of the main ones was the monopolism of general and chief designers and also deviation of the Ministry of the Radio Industry from specifying rigid requirements for standardization and unification.

Connecting all radiotechnical complexes to the Space Monitoring Center led to where it literally got bogged down from the flow of information, which in a 24-hour period comprised tens of thousands of standard messages about space objects being tracked by them.

It was necessary to develop the supplementary Kosmos program, which allowed the Space Monitoring Center to issue target designations to each complex only on newly launched space objects or on those requiring updates in the Main Catalogue. Now the complexes began transmitting standard messages to the Space Monitoring Center only at its request. As a result the information flow was reduced to a reasonable minimum. It took the complexes 2-3 minutes to fulfill target designations of the Space Monitoring Center, during which the detection of other space objects, including ballistic missiles, was disrupted throughout the radar coverage zone. B. A. Nazarkin and A. N. Nekrasov, officers of the National Air Defense Forces Main Staff, who regarded this circumstance as a planned disruption of combat readiness, submitted a report to the commander in chief with a categorical objection to introducing the Kosmos program.

National Air Defense Forces CIC A. I. Koldunov, Minister of the Radio Industry P. S. Pleshakov, his deputy V. I. Markov, who was responsible for this sector, and then also the General Staff and Military Industrial Commission deemed the program timely and necessary. Our conclusions were taken into account here that missile attack warning system and ABM defense radars were overlapping each other, were echeloned in depth, and missing ballistic missiles was precluded.

This episode told only about one of the many acute scientific-technical problems which occurred in the 1970's, but even it shows how responsibly people at the highest level at that time regarded the effectiveness and reliability of ABM and Space Defense Troops. Not one proposal or adverse comment was left without objective evaluation and a corresponding decision. We encountered great difficulties in solving the problem of identifying space objects, above all those of the probable enemy with a military purpose, and in singling them out against the background of the extremely complex overall space situation. A. L. Gorelik directed studies and developments in this direction in the Special SRI. Along with determining the possibility of having a radar and optical portrait of a space object, specialized technical means were being developed and created, including for use on our manned craft. Thus, during the flight of the Soyuz-14 craft in July 1974, P. R. Popovich detected the U.S. Skylab station in space from a target designation of the Space Monitoring Center with the help of the special Sokol optical device and performed necessary measurements. A special laboratory simulator complex was created in the Special SRI for training cosmonauts to perform such experiments. On it the cosmonauts rehearsed tasks of detecting space objects against the background of a starry sky and closing with and identifying them while using the Belka digital computer especially developed by the Ukrainian Academy of Sciences Institute of Cybernetics. Experiments also were conducted on detecting nuclear energy sources aboard the craft being inspected.

The experience acquired confirmed the need for creating specialized equipment for the space monitoring system, which subsequently was done.

The Space Monitoring Center together with information sources had to work in the presence of complicated emergency situations with our spacecraft.

Thus, Kosmos-954 with a nuclear power plant was launched in 1977. In connection with the emergency situation that arose a command was sent to the craft, at which point an impulse was supposed to be developed lifting it several hundreds of kilometers higher to a long-lived orbit. Because of a malfunction, instead of the necessary impulse another one was triggered, that of sharp deceleration, and the craft began to descend rapidly. Calculations showed that the nuclear power plant would not burn up on entering dense layers of the atmosphere and might fall on Earth in fragments, which would entail radioactive contamination. This was widely announced in the mass media of many countries.

Tracking of Kosmos-954 and forecasting of the time and area where the nuclear power plant would fall were done at the Space Monitoring Center from 20 December 1977. The Space Monitoring Center precisely determined the time of fall of fragments--at 1512 hours on 24 January 1978 in an uninhabited mountainous area on the territory of Canada, from where we removed them.

The very same situation later formed with Kosmos-1402, a similar type of craft launched 30 August 1982. The Space Monitoring Center determined that its fragments would fall in the Atlantic Ocean near Ascension Island at 1406 hours on 7 February 1983, and again it was not wrong. In both cases our forecast proved more accurate than that of the Americans. There also was occasion to work with manned craft in emergency situations. In the spring of 1985 the Salyut-7 craft was de-energized during flight in an automatic mode. It should be noted that in performing a launch, the Ministry of Defense Main Directorate of Space Assets (GUKOS MO) would track spacecraft based on their active response. But if the craft was silent in orbit as a result of an accident or when its life was exhausted, the Main Directorate of Space Assets used its own predicted calculated data of the orbit and the Main Catalogue of the Space Monitoring Center.

Based on Space Monitoring Center data, Salyut-7, a multiton craft, had begun to descend rapidly and was certain to fall in large fragments on the Earth with unpredictable consequences. In late May Cosmonaut V. V. Ryumin, the mission controller of this craft, traveled to see me with a request to give assistance and support the guidance of the Soyuz T-13 transport spacecraft with V. A. Dzhanibekov and V. P. Savinykh aboard for docking with Salyut-7. Colonel General of Aviation I. M. Maltsev, chief of the National Air Defense Forces Main Staff, approved the plan for our joint work with the Main Directorate of Space Assets. From 5 through 8 June, based on data of the Argun precise measurement system and other equipment, the Space Monitoring Center led the transport spacecraft to within 2.5 km of Salyut-7 and supported docking with manual control. Dzhanibekov and Savinykh revived Salyut-7, displaying courage and demonstrating an excellent knowledge of equipment. They succeeded in subsequently ensuring the craft's descent from orbit and its sinking in the Pacific Ocean. The Americans evaluated the capabilities of our space monitoring system on their merits.

In the U.S. assessment, military space systems (intelligence, navigational, topogeodetic, communications and so on) with their integrated use raised the effectiveness of combat employment both of strategic offensive forces as well as of tactical forces on the battlefield by 2-3 times. Convincing confirmation of this was the U.S. air-land operation in Desert Storm, the war against Iraq. Sixty military spacecraft were put in action in it. Desert Storm opened a new era in land wars--wide use of space. Attaching special significance to survivability, invulnerability and covertness of its military space systems, in the 1980's the United States began to put new craft of these systems into orbits with an altitude of 20,000-40,000 km. The calculation was extremely simple. The main assets of military space systems were being moved beyond the reach of the space monitoring system radar equipment and combat capabilities of space defense assets.

This circumstance required that we in turn unfold work to create specialized space monitoring system complexes--radar, electro-optical and laser--capable of detecting and tracking spacecraft at altitudes up to 40,000 km.

The Krona complexes were deployed in the North Caucasus and Far East--the chief designers were V. P. Sosulnikov and N. D. Ustinov. The Okno complex, developed by the Krasnogorsk plant design bureau (chief designer N. S. Chernov) was created in Tajikistan.

I will cite the following example to confirm the fact that our capabilities for monitoring space and affecting spacecraft had grown. The United States made the first launch of the Shuttle spacecraft in 1981. This naturally drew the attention of the government and heads of the Ministry of Defense. During launches from the U.S. Air Force Western Space and Missile Center (Vandenberg) the Columbia and also Challenger manned orbital stages passed from east to west over middle latitudes of the USSR, primarily in hours of daylight. These were 8 out of 14 revolutions in a 24-hour period, coinciding with our country's time zones. The orbital altitude was 300-400 km--total conformity with the sequence of passage of U.S. reconnaissance spacecraft.

The General Staff and Military Industrial Commission demanded that by the end of each 24-hour period there be a detailed report of what means were being used for tracking and also results of work of the space monitoring system. I had to prepare these reports.

Once in the fall of 1983 Minister of Defense D. F. Ustinov telephoned over the "Kremlin line": "Yuriy Vsevolodovich, hello! I have your report about work on the Shuttle in front of me. Tell me why the experimental laser system at the range has not been brought in?" I knew that this system was under the purview of General Designer N. D. Ustinov, the minister's son. A team of 300 specialists from organizations of the industry was making modifications on it. And I reported this to the Minister of Defense. "Talk it over with Nikolay Dmitriyevich on this score," said D. F. Ustinov. I phoned N. D. Ustinov. "No," he responded, "it is in no way possible now. We have periodic technical servicing going on. Some other time." On 10 October 1984, during the 13th flight of Challenger, when its orbital revolutions were passing in the vicinity of the National Air Defense Forces State Range near Lake Balkhash, the experiment took place with the laser unit operating in a detection mode with minimal emissive power. Orbital altitude of the Space Shuttle was 365 km. Slant range of detection and tracking was 400-800 km. Precise target designation for the laser unit was issued by General Designer G. V. Kisunko's Argun radar measurement system.

As the Challenger crew later reported, while flying over the Balkhash area communications suddenly shut down on the craft, malfunctions appeared in operation of gear, and the astronauts themselves did not feel quite well. The Americans immediately declared an official protest. The laser unit as well as a portion of the range's radiotechnical systems with high energy potential were not used subsequently for tracking the Shuttles. An effective, completely automated space monitoring system gradually took shape with the creation of the Space Monitoring Center, with all information assets of the missile attack warning system and ABM defense connected to it, and with work unfolding in the 1980's on specialized space monitoring assets. If one views space as a potentially possible theater of warfare, then attainment of parity with the United States in this area as well unquestionably increased the country's defense capability. Great credit goes to Special SRI military scientists and specialists who predicted and scientifically substantiated in a timely manner not only the need for creating the space monitoring system, but also requirements for its equipment. Scientists and designers, engineers and workers of enterprises of the Vympel Special Design Bureau of the Ministry of the Radio Industry created equipment for the space monitoring system responsibly and enthusiastically. The firm, day-to-day leadership of Vympel Special Design Bureau general directors V. I. Markov and, from 1981, O. A. Losev,9 deputy ministers of the Radio Industry, deserves respect and gratitude. Constant, strict supervision of the work was accomplished by Military Industrial Commission Chairman L. V. Smirnov and his deputy L. I. Gorshkov.

It is difficult to overestimate the contribution of troop personnel who took a direct part in assembling and adjusting technological gear and special technical equipment and in modifying and debugging combat programs loaded into the computers. Many proposals of troop engineers were received by developers and introduced to production. The greatest increase in combat effectiveness and reliability of equipment and of the space monitoring system as a whole was achieved right in the course of operation.

Space Monitoring Center Chief Engineer V. V. Nikolskiy10 with a team of specialists and with the participation of N. V. Kislyakov, chief engineer of ABM and Space Defense Troops, developed, received approval for, and introduced a so-called adaptive method of servicing equipment. Its essence reduced to the fact that very strict control was established over each computer unit. The actual mean time between failures, the normal operation in hours, was determined according to the statistics gathered. Using these data as a standard and without awaiting the appearance of a malfunction, the unit would be removed and sent to the repair and inspection facility in the adjacent room, where it was immediately replaced with a new unit from the set of spare parts, tools and accessories. As a result, under technical conditions of computer mean time between failures of 90 hours, faultless operation comprised 900-1,100 hours. V. S. Burtsev, general designer of the 5E-51 computer, took a direct part in this work and, together with the Main Ordering Directorate, legitimized the "adaptive" method in operating instructions. This would seem to be only one feature from operating experience, but it too became known, was approved by the Ministry of the Radio Industry and Military Industrial Commission and promptly introduced in all units and formations of ABM and Space Defense Troops for all kinds of technological gear and special technical equipment. This resulted in a substantial increase in combat readiness. The Space Monitoring Center had a superb collective of officers and warrant officers and well trained NCO's and privates. For a number of years the Center was recognized as one of the best units in the National Air Defense Forces and was the only collective in the ABM and Space Defense Troops awarded the USSR Minister of Defense Pennant for Courage and Military Valor. The commander, Colonel I. Yu. Yukhnevich,11 was one of the first in the National Air Defense Forces to be decorated with the Order "For Service to the Motherland in the USSR Armed Forces" 2nd and 3rd class and the Labor Red Banner. Orders and medals were bestowed on many officers and warrant officers. By the end of the 1980's the Space Monitoring Center had gotten its second wind, if it can be thus expressed. In compressed time periods military construction organizations together with subunits of Minmontazhspetsstroy [Ministry of Installation and Special Construction Work] placed a new technological building in operation in which the most advanced computer system (for that time), the Elbrus of General Designer V. S. Burtsev, was deployed. The system, with a speed of millions of operations per second, dictated the possibility of making fullest use of information from detection equipment of the missile attack warning system, ABM defense, and specialized space monitoring systems in an automatic mode for performing the wide range of tasks already assigned to the space monitoring system.

Everything positive in mastery and operation of space monitoring system equipment is the result of intelligent, strenuous work of initiative by I. Yu. Yukhnevich and also by I. G. Sergeyev, chief designer for this direction in the armament service of the directorate of the commander of ABM and Space Defense Troops; Space Monitoring Center Chief Engineer V. V. Nikolskiy; Chief of Staff A. P. Zaytsev;12 L. K. Olyander13 and many other commanders and engineers.

Now the space monitoring troops were deservedly consolidated as part of a separate corps. It causes alarm that with the USSR's disintegration appropriations have been sharply reduced for completing work on specialized monitoring equipment. And the fate of a portion of it stationed in CIS countries is the very same as for missile attack warning system complexes.

Space Defense System

General Designer A. I. Savin had been working with the collective of the Kometa TsNII [Central Scientific Research Institute] since 1962 on the problem of destroying the probable enemy's military spacecraft. A unique automated space defense system was created toward the end of the 1960's together with V. N. Chelomey,14 general designer of missile and space equipment. It consisted of a ground computer control and telemetry facility located in Podmoskovye, a special launch pad at the Baykonur Range, a booster rocket and a satellite interceptor vehicle.

Savin and his deputy K. A. Vlasko-Vlasov designed a compact radar with an original S&T concept for determining coordinates (of the target spacecraft and interceptor) and transmitting commands (corrections) to the interceptor (SOK [not further expanded] and PK [course correction]), and designed portable receiving posts. A combat program was loaded in the computer system and debugged.

Chelomey in turn determined the booster rocket from those already operational and designed a satellite interceptor vehicle with homing head and fragmentation warhead, and also a special target spacecraft with radio transmitters accommodated in it; termination of their operation at the moment of destruction permitted objectively determining both the fact of destruction and the degree to which the target was removed from a working status.

Military space defense collectives in Podmoskovye and at Baykonur mastered the equipment and combat operations of the system and with the developers' participation were capable of performing the mission of destroying a target vehicle. In August 1970 for the first time in the world the space defense system hit a launched target vehicle based on a target designation of the Space Monitoring Center. A special receiver in Podmoskovye registered that at the moment of destruction the majority of radio transmitters of the target vehicle ceased to operate, and the degree of destruction was the total disabling of the target.

After modifications and experimental operation the space defense system was placed on alert duty from 1 June 1979. Work continued intensively to expand its combat capabilities and improve effectiveness.

The mission posed was that under certain conditions of the military-political situation, by decision of the Supreme High Command the Space Defense Troops and space monitoring system would be capable of destroying the main military space systems of the probable enemy in a short time and thereby substantially reducing the effectiveness of employment of strategic offensive forces and weapons on the battlefield. And this mission was performed very successfully.

I recall how at a conference with First Deputy Chief of the General Staff S. F. Akhromeyev15 held in early August 1983 it was stated in particular that in one of his upcoming speeches Yu. V. Andropov16 would announce our termination of tests of the space defense system on a unilateral basis. I categorically objected to this and said that we needed at least another 3-4 months to confirm experimentally the principles of modernization being realized for the system. Akhromeyev's answer was curt: "What were you thinking about earlier?"... And on 18 August 1983 the space defense system fell silent after the corresponding declaration by Andropov. S. S. Martynov,17 commander of the system, had to transfer many officers and warrant officers, superb professionals, to other units or recommend them for discharge to the reserve. All this was occurring specifically when technical and organizational unification of ABM defense, missile attack warning system, space monitoring system and space defense had been completed and a unified missile-space defense system that functioned automatically under unified software and algorithmic support had formed. It had taken almost 20 years to fulfill D. F. Ustinov's instruction about the need to overcome separateness in creating this unique strategic defensive weapon system, which served as a guarantor against initiation of a nuclear missile war.

With respect to the space defense system, it is now out of work, as they say. Its interface with the Space Monitoring Center and creation of a unified command post there was unnecessary. Probably only Space Monitoring Center veterans will remember how much mental and physical labor was expended to compile, keep up and update hourly the special Catalogue with elements of orbits of military spacecraft of foreign states. A constant readiness for immediately issuing target designations to the space defense system for destruction was maintained based on them.

I will note that in accordance with the doctrine proclaimed by R. Reagan in 1983, the United States was carrying out accelerated creation of the ASAT antisatellite system based on the F-15 aircraft with SRAM-Altair air-space missiles, which could be used to engage space objects at altitudes up to 1,000 km. The complex was using homing missiles with non-nuclear warheads. The Americans successfully completed tests of the ASAT system in 1987 and evidently are not planning to part with it. The use of Shuttle manned spacecraft with the installation of various weapons including laser weapons in them was being viewed as a use of attack weapons in space.

It would be well if we did not have to regret the time lost and pay for the decisions made in 1983.

Arbitrator of Last Resort

Creation of the ABM and Space Defense Troops was dictated by S&T progress on the one hand and by the space arms race, into which the Soviet Union also had been drawn, on the other. The presence of these troops as part of the Armed Forces of the USSR and now of Russia deterred U.S. military ambitions in the 1960's, 1970's and 1980's, and even now serves as a guarantee against delivery of a surprise, unpunished, unanswered nuclear missile strike against our country.

Without fearing to bring the wrath of my numerous opponents in my native land down on myself, I assert that the successful formation and development of the troops would have been impossible without the harshest of order and organization and even of totalitarianism in the corresponding, not corridors, but offices of power in the CPSU Central Committee, USSR Council of Ministers and the Ministry of Defense. And if our own history does not persuade us of this, I recommend taking the example from... the United States.

Had a similar situation formed 30 years ago we would not have succeeded in doing even a little bit of what was created under cold war conditions in the matter of strengthening defense capability. And much was done--and it was no worse, and for determining positions even better, than in America. I will cite a specific example.

Literally from the very first days after I took over the position of commander of ABM and Space Defense Troops of National Air Defense Forces, I encountered the fact that all ABM defense and missile attack warning system facilities at which work was being done by that time were being created in execution of decrees of the CPSU Central Committee and Council of Ministers. Initially I assumed that these directive documents were being prepared in the apparat of the Central Committee and Council of Ministers. Subsequently, when I had occasion to take a direct part in drawing up drafts of such documents together with other specialists, I realized how many-sided and creative this work was and what the CPSU Central Committee's role in it was.

Work on draft decrees for ABM and Space Defense Troops would begin in the SRI of the National Air Defense Forces. A special Directorate of Strategic Assessment and Forecasting of Offensive Weapon Development was established. Preliminary specifications would be drawn up for new weapons based on results of analysis, mathematical modeling and full-scale experiments. Time periods for development on the order of 5-6 years and subsequent operation for at least ten years were taken into account here.

The principal criteria were high effectiveness and reliability with a minimum permissible time period for creation and minimum permissible cost. I will note that before the beginning of the 1980's our present "wooden ruble" corresponded to 1.1 U.S. dollars in the defense industry. Tactical and technical requirements were examined at the level of the Main Ordering Directorate and my directorate and after approval of the commander in chief would be transmitted to the Military Industrial Commission. But it was necessary to withstand a lengthy, exhausting struggle with powerful general designers, since new, complex S&T problems were being posed for them. It was also necessary to overcome the stubborn resistance of monopolistic ministries. The fact is the Ministry of the Radio Industry, Ministry of the Aviation Industry and Ministry of the Electronics Industry as well as others had to restructure production, master a new element base and erect new plants.

Contradictions between the client and industrial organizations, which were insisting on a considerable reduction in the given requirements, often would lead to conflicts. The CPSU Central Committee Defense Industry Department, in which such major scientists and engineers as N. N. Detinov, V. F. Fedorov and G. S. Savasteyev worked, acted as the last resort in resolving issues. Coordinated drafts would be submitted for signature to the chairman of the Council of Ministers and sent to the Central Committee.

And here--and I confirm this with all responsibility--state interests, and by no means those of ministries and departments, always were in the foreground. Knowing this well, the scientific-production, labor and military collectives would perform complex tasks with high quality in minimum time periods, keeping within very limited budgetary funds. Increasing the country's defense capability was truly a sacred job for the people taking a direct part in this.

Elite of the Military-Industrial Complex

The armament complexes and systems of the ABM and Space Defense Troops were created by talented scientist-designers, both military and civilian. Each was a uniquely individual personality. For example, there were most intelligent people and scientists with world names such as Yu. B. Khariton and A. L. Mints with their worthy pupils Yu. V. Polyak, V. M. Ivantsov and V. K. Sloka; the explosive G. V. Kisunko, who engaged in strongly-worded polemics, and the modest, very honest and industrious I. D. Omelchenko; the talented, strict, principled A. G. Basistov and the intelligent, charming M. G. Minosyan; V. G. Repin, loyal to his coperformers; even-tempered, self-restrained, self-critical A. I. Savin; temperamental, exacting V. M. Kovtunenko; P. D. Grushin, fair in assessing what had been achieved; determined and capable F. A. Kuzminskiy, A. N. Musatov, V. P. Sosulnikov and F. F. Yevstratov. But there was that common thing that united them all--high responsibility for protecting the multinational people of a great country by reliable means of the missile attack warning system, ABM defense, space defense and the space monitoring system. And in the final account the difference in approaches to resolving fundamental S&T problems, the uncompromising struggle and the competing projects enabled determining the most rational directions in outfitting troops with armament.

I realize that I hardly have the right to evaluate the elite of our military-industrial complex, but many years of working together enable me to say what memory suggests about each of them.

The majority of scientists and designers went through Army service. G. V. Kisunko began it as a private of the Leningrad militia and R. A. Valiyev as a member of the militia in the battle of Moscow. V. I. Markov, deputy minister of the USSR Radio Industry and general director of the Vympel Special Design Bureau, who was directly responsible for armament of the ABM and Space Defense Troops, was a scout of a partisan detachment in Belorussia, and O. A. Losev, who replaced him in this post, commanded a reconnaissance battery of a gun artillery regiment in the 2nd Belorussian Front. Many finished military schools and academies. And all of them believed that it was the Army that determined their further destiny.

From the First Peg

Establishment of the Missile-Space Defense Troops began with the selection of sites for constructing weapon complexes. General and chief designers determined areas of the country where, if stationed there, the specifications and performance characteristics of systems would be realized most fully, minimum damage would be done to the ecology, and reliable biological protection of the population was ensured. The Engineering Directorate of National Air Defense Forces--Chief K. V. Uryvin--determined the permissible amount of capital investments, took into account the unconditional consent of local authorities in site selection, and facilitated normal work conditions.

In the 1970's up to 100,000 military construction personnel worked to construct several Missile-Space Defense Troops sites simultaneously. In the period of completion of construction and installation work and of the broad work front of installing and adjusting technological gear at one site the builders numbered 30,000, Ministry of Installation and Special Construction Work specialists numbered 2,000-3,000, and specialists of industry 3,000-4,000. Military builders had to be provided with housing, messhalls and spaces for workshops and depots. And this incredibly difficult task was accomplished.

Of course, many problems arose. In the course of creating weapon systems, general and chief designers would make substantial changes to the layout of technological spaces and the distribution of cables and would stiffen requirements on the quality of water for cooling gear and on temperature and humidity conditions. Ministry of Installation and Special Construction Work representatives also made changes to the initial project. The ordering Engineering Directorate of the National Air Defense Forces supplied hardware of special technical equipment that was similar in characteristics but different from the project. It would happen that by the time of delivery the hardware envisaged by the project had been removed from production by industry and replaced by other hardware. As a result, alteration and additional costs and time were required. Construction at Podmoskovye sites was conducted by the Center's Main Military Construction Directorate (Chief A. G. Karaoglanov). Its motto was: "Build well." Subordinate officers and personnel of military construction detachments were targeted specifically toward fulfilling this requirement. And to this day military units express gratitude to builders of the Main Directorate for the high quality and esthetics of facilities, such as of the early warning radar complex with the Dunay-3U radar which I already mentioned.

In border areas where natural conditions were more difficult, work was done by the Main Directorate of Special Construction, chief of which was K. M. Vertelov,18 and from 1979 N. V. Chekov.19 They constantly took a personal part in building facilities of the missile attack warning system and space monitoring system of Missile-Space Defense Troops. Thus, great credit goes to military builders for the fact that armament systems were created and are reliably performing a combat mission of state importance.

Vertelov, first deputy chief of USSR Ministry of Defense Construction and Troop Billeting--a competent, strong-willed, demanding person and brilliant organizer--generated the military builders' enthusiasm for performing selfless labor and skillfully maneuvered forces and assets of military construction subunits, creating a reliable labor organization and achieving its increased quality. At the demand of designers, Vertelov had a team of planners from the Ministry of Defense TsPI-20 at each construction site without the right of departure for solving problems connected with alterations. They solved all problems that arose on the spot promptly with appropriate formalization. In addition, Vertelov initiated the development of detailed "combined schedules." They specified what technological gear industry had to deliver to the construction site by what time period and the degree of readiness of spaces and special technical equipment for installation and adjustment of gear. Military builders and specialists of the Ministry of Installation and Special Construction Work did everything dependent on them to fulfill their portion of the work on time. There was a lag and disruptions in industry. When this became obvious, indiscriminate accusations against the military for disrupting intermediate and end time periods for creating weapon complexes ceased.

For several years the mass media have been sharply and fairly criticizing the state of military discipline and of educational work in military construction detachments. Yes, there was and is dedovshchina and crime there. The negative state of affairs in many military construction detachments is the result above all of their manpower acquisition of draftees who have had convictions, who have poor education and a poor knowledge of the Russian language. The majority of junior officers directly responsible for education of subordinates were from among those called up from the reserve for two years. The very difficult conditions of settling in and of life and routine already have been mentioned. But the fact is, specifically the military builders created very major facilities of the defense industry and the national economy.

Civilian specialists of the Ministry of Installation and Special Construction Work worked together with military builders under the very same conditions. They were directed by B. V. Bakin,20 deputy minister of the Ministry of Installation and Special Construction Work, a very businesslike person with a detailed knowledge of the full diversity of complex systems of special technical equipment (special lathes) for technological gear, ventilation, air conditioning, fire extinguishing and so on. He strived for efficiency in the manufacture and delivery of metalwork. And being minister, Bakin did not forget our facilities.

Specialists of the leading production-technical enterprise of the Ministry of the Radio Industry, the general director of which was V. N. Kazantsev, skillfully and harmoniously installed and adjusted technological gear. Chiefs approved by the ministry were assigned from among leading employees of this enterprise to each facility. They, together with the commanders and chief engineers of military units, would organize the personnel's constant, direct involvement in installation and adjustment of technological equipment and in installation and adjustment of special technical systems. Enterprise specialists trained the personnel and gave a test for authorization for independent operation of the equipment. After the facilities were turned over for operation these chiefs remained here and headed up integrated teams of industrial representatives performing warranty service.

Directorate of the Commander and the Professional Missile-Space Defense Troops

For the sake of truth I must mention the unquestionable services of generals, officers and employees of the directorate whose selfless, strenuous, creative labor largely contributed to creating a reliable antimissile and antispace shield for the USSR. During the period 1967-1986 the directorate makeup was rejuvenated by the best officers from the troops. But of special significance is the role of the first makeup of officers, trained and educated in the special-purpose SAM Army, primarily engineers who along with themselves introduced professionalism, high culture, morality and a responsible, decent, conscientious attitude toward the job. All worked with full exertion of spiritual and physical energies. It is hard to realize that V. V. Golubev, S. I. Goryushkin, K. I. Zikhanov, V. D. Rumyantsev, A. A. Ignatov, I. A. Aleshin and Yu. M. Gridnev died prematurely.

The directorate collective developed a concept of combat employment of Missile-Space Defense Troops in operational-strategic operations of the National Air Defense Forces together with scientists of the SRI's, of the Special SRI and of academies. Substantiation of the integrated combat employment of missile attack warning troops, ABM and Space Defense Troops and space monitoring troops with unified, centralized command and control from the National Air Defense Forces Central Command Post was fundamental to it. The main forces and assets were concentrated on performing the mission of prompt, reliable warning of a missile attack, and at the same time the effectiveness of ABM and space defense was improved. Realization of the concept required that general and chief designers work out a unified combat algorithm and introduce corresponding programs to computer equipment of command posts of fully automated weapon systems. As the weapon complexes and systems were developed and improved, the combat algorithm and programs were updated, as was the concept for combat employment of Missile-Space Defense Troops.

The concept was checked in exercises conducted under the direction of the commander in chief of National Air Defense Forces, chief of the General Staff and USSR minister of defense, and also in crisis and emergency situations.

The directorate planned to conduct together the measures for operational-tactical and combat training, logistic support, and strengthening of military discipline and moral atmosphere in military collectives, especially in the midst of junior officers, warrant officers, NCO's and privates, so the troops would be capable of performing the combat mission of state importance at any time and under any conditions.

Systematic work in formations and units by integrated directorate teams was subordinated specifically to this. In addition to scheduled inspections during the training period and the training year, surprise trips to the troops were made which were timed for the launch of our own and U.S. ballistic missiles and spacecraft. This permitted checking the degree of combat readiness against actual targets.

Directorate officers worked calmly and efficiently. In identifying shortcomings, they would find correct solutions for their elimination directly in the course of work. They taught by personal example.

Along with tactical-technical exercises, large-scale ground defense exercises also were conducted. The experience of these exercises even now has proved not to be superfluous, since many missile attack warning system and space monitoring system complexes are in CIS countries and some are in areas of military conflicts.

The headquarters of the Army, corps [plural] and divisions worked in the troops in the very same spirit.

The fundamental Army principle "Do as I do" has deep meaning.

In far-off 1938 that was how, as a 19-year-old lieutenant, I was taught by Captain V. T. Bagdasaryan,21 commander of 7th Battery, Tbilisi Mountain Artillery School. An outstanding person and a genuine professional, his high and at times harsh exactingness got along together with an attentive, solicitous attitude toward subordinates. He was truly a master in training and educating commanders of platoons and of our multinational collective of cadets.

Three years of duty under his command left an indelible trace on all my subsequent activity. In making particular decisions I always oriented myself on principles laid down by the unforgettable battery commander. How important it is that at the beginning of service every young officer have his own Bagdasaryan, an immediate commander deserving love and respect. Fifty calendar years of service to the homeland give me the right to assert that high combat readiness is impossible without adequate professional training of commanders, officers and engineers of all degrees. They are determining in the process of training all subunit and unit personnel. New combat equipment and its continuous modernization and updating insistently demand a constant increase in one's professional level. Therefore I as well as the majority of leadership personnel of formations and units did not consider it disgraceful for ourselves to learn from specialists of industry and from engineers in units at each convenient opportunity, even at the expense of leave.

And it is not only a matter of not lagging behind development of equipment, but also of the ability to accumulate sensible, substantiated suggestions from the troops and strive for their introduction by industry. Literally thousands of such suggestions substantially improved the efficiency and reliability of equipment and its operating conditions. Combat readiness is impossible without high morality of the people who support it. If it can be thus expressed, tens, hundreds, thousands of eyes are constantly focused on the commander, from which you will conceal neither falsity in behavior nor contradictoriness in actions. Only a highly conscientious, profoundly decent commander can fully implement the principle "Do as I do." Only then can he be considered a professional.

I will be frank--to become such and always remain such is a burden of which not everyone is capable. The oppressive atmosphere of monopolism, inaccessible bureaucracy, bribery, legitimized official boorishness and glossing over of truth at all levels is that fertile soil in which the misshapen phenomena of our existence sprout. And the Army is no exception.

At first, in the upper echelons of authority of the troops, I was reputed to be almost a "white crow," as they now say: I would pay for dinner in the enlisted mess, close so-called "Greek halls" in all units for receiving various inspectors and chiefs, not allow use of the familiar form in contact with enlisted men and officers, not use swear words and not have (nor do I have to this day) either a dacha or my own car. If this were a trifle, then I would have remained a "white crow," but in time this began to cause irritation in some and happy surprise and hope in others. Subordinates understood that it was not simply possible, but necessary that one should live and serve like their commander. I certify with great satisfaction that all leadership personnel of the Army, corps, divisions and units had a high moral level.

Units were being created anew in the Missile-Space Defense Troops. Many were in place of disbanded ones which had glorious combat traditions. And although everything became new, missions more responsible, and equipment and armament more complex, traditions and the Colors must remain inviolate, accumulating the will and honor of the Motherland's defender. That was why I repeatedly requested continuity of designations of disbanded units and formations from the General Staff, but I got neither understanding nor even a response there...

It is not superfluous to recall that in the 1960's the table of organization structure of Missile-Space Defense Troops was determined by the method of trial and error. The type structure of company, battalion and regiment imposed on us by the General Staff Main Organizational-Mobilization Directorate contradicted the experience of operation of fundamentally new and fully automated weapon systems.

In time it became obvious that the department [otdel] should be the basic subunit. This was 20-40 officers and several warrant officers and junior specialists. The department chief would receive gear and equipment on his personal responsibility and assign and train four shifts of the combat team from among officers, three shifts of junior specialists and a periodic technical servicing team. He was directly responsible for constant readiness and serviceability of all three sets of gear and equipment, having one in a "combat operation" mode, a second in a "ready for combat operation" mode and a third in cold reserve or in periodic technical servicing or repair.

Departments would be joined to make up a station, a center, and units. The makeup of units included departments of combat algorithms and programs, repair-inspection facilities, communications and data transmission centers, security companies and support subunits.

Considering the importance of the combat mission being performed, the General Staff removed its objection and elevated the status of units to brigades. Units received designations of radiotechnical complexes [uzel], antimissile units, and command-computer centers and became part of divisions, corps and the Army. Approximately 60 percent of their numerical strength consisted of officers and warrant officers. That was how the foundation of a professional Army was laid down.

It was then, at the end of the 1960's, that a very acute problem arose of training cadres in specialties of the Missile-Space Defense Troops. At the suggestion of P. F. Batitskiy, supported by the General Staff, a special faculty was set up at the Military Command Academy of Air Defense imeni Marshal of the Soviet Union G. K. Zhukov--Chief P. F. Tushev, heads of chairs V. S. Prosvetov and I. S. Fedoseyenko. Three of the six faculties and some of the chairs in the Military Engineering Radiotechnical Academy of Air Defense were transferred to the new student training profile. The heads of faculties were P. K. Gritsak, E. Ya. Luss, and G. V. Yakubovskiy. Heads of chairs were scientists with world names Ya. D. Shirman, Ya. S. Shifrin, A. V. Kolosov and A. A. Meteshkin. The chiefs of academies, Marshal of Aviation G. V. Zimin22 and Marshal of Artillery Yu. P. Bazhanov, regarded formation of faculties with their inherent sense of responsibility. The decisive support of G. F. Baydukov permitted establishing a superb training facility in Missile-Space Defense Troops armament in the academies. Two schools were transferred from the SAM Troops to the new profile and their status was elevated. These were the Pushkin Higher Command-Engineering School of Radioelectronics (Chief V. I. Gromadin) and the Zhitomir School of the very same kind (Chief Ye. Ye. Poluektov). Graduates of academies and schools in the missile-space defense profile had high authority. They were assigned not only to the troops, but also to units subordinate to the General Staff and the Main Directorate of Space Assets. Disintegration of the superpower led to where the Kharkov Engineering Academy and Zhitomir Higher School simply are no more. The loss for the Missile-Space Defense Troops of course is great, but a portion of the instructors and cadets were transferred from Zhitomir to Kubinka, where a branch of the Pushkin Higher School was deployed on the base of the 12th Training Center, which was training junior specialists.

The need for advancement of young, promising commanders to fill positions of the commander of Missile-Space Defense Troops, Army commander, corps and division commanders, and chiefs of operations staffs insistently demanded their training at the USSR Armed Forces General Staff Military Academy imeni K. Ye. Voroshilov. Thus, V. K. Strelnikov, who completed this Academy in 1967 and was appointed commander of a separate missile attack warning division, proved to be a head taller than other senior officers in the combat arm in the level of his training, operational outlook and ability to command. My personal experience also confirms this. Nevertheless, it was necessary to overcome a multitude of cadre barriers. Only the support of Academy Chief General of the Army M. M. Kozlov and Lieutenant General N. A. Asriyev, head of the chair for the air defense profile, enabled sending one officer to this training institution annually. The USSR Armed Forces General Staff Military Academy was successfully completed by present Missile-Space Defense Troops Commander V. M. Smirnov, by Army Commander N. I. Rodionov, by Army Chief of Staff N. K. Sergeyev, and by separate corps commanders N. P. Kartashov and A. I. Suslov. Further development and improvement of the Missile-Space Defense Troops dictate the need not to interrupt, but to continue the training of worthy officers in this Academy. The eliteness of Missile-Space Defense Troops units, now remaining only on Russian territory, is preserved. Traditions which were born and strengthened together with us also are being maintained. And this distinction is determined not by the uniqueness of equipment and armament, but above all by the people who master it.

Under conditions of economic chaos and legal boundlessness which have mercilessly lashed the country, they remain so thanks to their high professionalism, patriotism, and honest execution of filial duty to the Motherland. I became convinced of this when in June 1993 I was present at a meeting with essentially already the third generation of leadership of the separate missile attack warning army, a generation capable not only of preserving, but also multiplying the grand traditions of Missile-Space Defense Troops.

In 1978, thanks to the decisive support of Commander in Chief A. I. Koldunov, the reform itch of highly placed officials of the National Air Defense Forces Main Staff and the GOU [Operations Main Directorate] of the General Staff succeeded in being stopped and disintegration of the directorate and Missile-Space Defense Troops was not allowed. But now the directorate has been pulled apart to services of the main commissariat. The future will show how justified this is and what the fate of the troops will be.

In Place of a Conclusion

Well then, under conditions of a strict regime of secrecy, the missile-space shield of a great country was forged, which precluded the possibility of a surprise, unanswered nuclear missile strike on the part of any aggressor whomsoever. During the lengthy cold war period the U.S. and NATO military-political leadership could not help but take into account the constant combat readiness of the Missile-Space Defense Troops and the powerful nuclear missile potential of the USSR.

There are neither winners nor losers in our constant competition with the Americans in armament systems of Missile-Space Defense Troops. The presence of these systems on both sides cautioned previously, as well as now, against a suicidal temptation to resolve arising problems with the help of the "club."

Difficult as it may be, it must be admitted that the political and economic disintegration of the Soviet Union led to a substantial disruption of the grouping of Missile-Space Defense Troops and their combat capabilities dropped, including also for the defense of Russia. It is vexing and bitter to realize that the almost 30 years of strenuous labor of scientists, the defense industry, and the military to a certain extent turns out to be unnecessary.

Let us turn to the facts. The bulk of radiotechnical complexes for detecting ballistic missiles on flight trajectories now has ended up on the territory of Latvia, Belarus, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan. From the mid-1980's large-scale work was carried on at the positions of all these complexes for replacing obsolete stations and creating new ones such as Daryal-U and Volga. In prices of that time the overall cost of expenditures was on the order of R2.5 billion. As of January 1990 around R1.5 billion had been used. At the present time financing has stopped. Work essentially is not being carried on. The electro-optical space monitoring systems also ended up in the very same situation in the near abroad. It may end up where in the next few years the CIS will remain without the most reliable and accurate means of the missile attack warning system on the Northwestern, Western and Southwestern avenues of likely missile approach, and also without the assets of the space monitoring system at altitudes up to 40,000 km.

What can be done under the circumstances at hand? I think above all to be attentive to proposals of Kazakhstan President N. A. Nazarbayev. Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan could conclude a collective security treaty in which, along with other questions, conditions would be determined for the stationing, support of operations and organization of alert duty of complexes of Missile-Space Defense Troops and also financing of work to complete the creation of new stations. Missile attack and space situation warning information would be issued to state command and control posts and CP's of ministries of defense for the appropriate payment. Subsequently other CIS countries could join this treaty or conclude a bilateral treaty with the Russian Federation, assuming obligations under which complexes of over-the-horizon radar of the missile attack warning system and electro-optical complexes of the space monitoring system remain Russian bases on coordinated and precisely specified terms of lease, without the right of their seizure and discrimination against attendant personnel. Russia's right to complete the creation of new stations should be stipulated especially.

If the political and military leadership of CIS countries understands their responsibility for security of their peoples, then the proposed treaties are a specific path to preserving and upgrading the Missile-Space Defense Troops. A very important condition which invariably must be specified in the treaties is preservation of the Vympel Interstate Corporation, whose design organizations and plants have ended up not only on the territory of Russia, but also in Ukraine and Belarus.

Now it is customary to assert that we have no enemy and that friendly, partnership relations have been established with the United States and NATO. But reliable partnership relations can exist only with those equal in strength. They speak the language of diktat and impose their will on the weak. And Russia has been weakened substantially. One great power, the United States, remains, and now specifically it dictates its terms to the world. Establishment of the Missile-Space Defense Troops demanded a solution to complex scientific-technical problems. The truly cosmic height of the goal set determined the choice of people capable of creating and controlling weapon complexes and systems. Before my eyes young engineers and officers, representatives of various nationalities, grew into major scientists, designers and military leaders.

We were able to give far from all of them their due for their selfless, devoted labor at the limit of human capabilities. Perhaps specifically that self-sacrifice dramatically predetermined the early, irreplaceable departure of many of them. P.S. V. P. Barmin, N. I. Savinkin, M. I. Nenashev, R. A. Valiyev, M. G. Minosyan and Yu. V. Polyak departed from life during the time the manuscript was being prepared for publication.


1. Gorelik, Aleksandr Leopoldovich (b. 1923),
Engineer-Colonel. In 1968 deputy chief of an administration of
the Special SRI. Chief theorist and developer of systems for
identifying space objects in solving problems of the space
monitoring system and space defense. Doctor of technical
sciences, professor. State Prize laureate.
2. Kurlanov, Aleksandr Dmitriyevich (b. 1924), Major 
In 1967 chief of an administration of the Special SRI. In 1982
chairman of NTK [Scientific-Technical Committee] of Main
Directorate of Space Assets. Doctor of technical sciences,
professor. State Prize laureate. Honored Man of Science and
Engineering of RSFSR. Member of Academy of Cosmonautics imeni E.
K. Tsiolkovskiy.
3. Kuryshev, Vasiliy Ivanovich (b. 1913), chief of a chair of
Ryazan Pedagogic Institute. Doctor of technical sciences,
professor. Honored member of Astrogeodetic Society of Russian
Academy of Sciences, laureate of Cosmonaut Training Center
Diploma imeni Yuriy Gagarin.
4. Bazhanov, Yuriy Pavlovich (1905-1975), Marshal of
Artillery. In 1949 commander of artillery of Maritime Military
District. In 1955 chief of Military Engineering Radiotechnical
Academy of Air Defense. Doctor of military sciences, professor.
5. Pisarev, Ivan Parfenovich (b. 1922), Lieutenant General.
In 1953 commander of SAM regiment. In 1959 chief of operations
department. In 1965 chief of staff of special-purpose SAM army.
In 1970 chief of staff of ABM and Space Defense Troops of
National Air Defense Forces.
6. Sergeyev, Ivan Gordeyevich (b. 1937), Colonel. In 1965
senior engineer in the Special SRI. In 1968 chief of a
department of the Space Monitoring Center. In 1980 chief
engineer of a sector of the missile engineering service in the
headquarters of ABM and Space Defense Troops.
7. Kuriksha, Aleksandr Aleksandrovich (b. 1933), scientist in
field of radar and radionavigation. In 1971 chief of scientific
research section in Vympel Interstate Corporation. Doctor of
technical sciences. State Prize laureate.
8. Ochkasov, Yuriy Semenovich (b. 1934), Colonel. In 1976
deputy chief designer of Space Monitoring Center. Candidate of
technical sciences.
9. Losev, Oleg Andreyevich (1923-1993), Lieutenant General.
Hero of Socialist Labor. In 1952 SAM regiment commander. In 1958
chief of a department, in 1973 deputy, in 1979 first deputy
chief of Main Directorate of Armament of National Air Defense
Forces. In 1981 deputy minister of the Radio Industry. State
Prize laureate.
10. Nikolskiy, Viktor Vladimirovich (b. 1942), Colonel. In
1978 chief of coordination computer post. In 1980 deputy
commander of Space Monitoring Center for weapons. From 1988 to
the present time deputy commander of a separate corps for
11. Yukhnevich, Ippolit Yulyanovich (b. 1932), Colonel. In
1960 commander of a SAM battalion. In 1966 deputy commander of
space defense system. From 1973 through 1986 commander of Space
Monitoring Center.
12. Zaytsev, Aleksandr Petrovich (b. 1941), Major General. In
1984 deputy commander and in 1986 commander of Space Monitoring
Center. From 1988 to the present time chief of staff of a
separate corps.
13. Olyander, Leforg Konstantinovich (b. 1934), Colonel. In
1971 deputy chief of staff for battle management. In 1974 chief
of a department of Space Monitoring Center.
14. Chelomey, Vladimir Nikolayevich (b. 1914), scientist and
designer in the field of aircraft, missile and space equipment.
Twice-Honored Hero of Socialist Labor, Academician of Russian
Academy of Sciences. Lenin Prize laureate and laureate of two
State prizes.
15. Akhromeyev, Sergey Fedorovich (1923-1991), Marshal of the
Soviet Union. Hero of the Soviet Union. During 1984-1988 chief
of USSR Armed Forces General Staff. Lenin Prize laureate.
16. Andropov, Yuriy Vladimirovich (1914-1984), General of 
Army. Soviet Party and state figure. Hero of Socialist Labor.
From November 1982 CPSU CC General Secretary and simultaneously
from 1983 chairman of the USSR Supreme Soviet Presidium and
chairman of the Defense Council.
17. Martynov, Sergey Sergeyevich (b. 1946), Major General. 
1984 commander of space defense system. In 1992 commander of a
missile attack warning division.
18. Vertelov, Konstantin Mikhaylovich (b. 1923), Colonel
General. Hero of Socialist Labor. In 1951 chief of construction
of atomic production in the Urals. In 1971 chief of Ministry of
Defense Main Directorate of Special Construction. In 1979 first
deputy chief of Ministry of Defense Construction and Troop
Billeting. In 1985 chief of State Expert Examination and
Inspection of the Ministry of Defense. Lenin and State prize
laureate. Honored Builder of RSFSR.
19. Chekov, Nikolay Vasilyevich (b. 1931), Colonel General.
In 1979 chief of Ministry of Defense Main Directorate of Special
Construction. In 1988 deputy minister of defense for
Construction and Troop Billeting. State Prize laureate.
20. Bakin, Boris Vladimirovich (b. 1912), Hero of Socialist
Labor. In 1967 deputy minister and in 1975 minister of
Installation and Special Construction Work. Lenin and State
prize laureate.
21. Bagdasaryan, Vartan Tatevosovich (b. 1907), Lieutenant
Colonel. In 1937 commander of a cadet battery of Transcaucasus
Joint Military School. In 1941 commander of a battalion, 80th
Artillery Regiment, 76th Mountain Rifle Division. From 1943
through 1955 commanded artillery training units.
22. Zimin, Georgiy Vasilyevich (b. 1912), Marshal of
Aviation. Hero of the Soviet Union. In 1960 first deputy
commander in chief of National Air Defense Forces. In 1966 chief
of Military Academy of Air Defense. Doctor of military sciences,