Streetwise Professor

February 2, 2012

Rogozin the Ridiculous Strikes Again!

Filed under: Military,Politics,Russia — The Professor @ 4:14 pm

Keeping up with Rogozin’s absurdities is damn near a full time job.  The most recent:

Russia will start producing six submarines and one aircraft carrier annually starting in 2013, Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin said on Thursday.

“By 2013, production capacity [at Russian shipyards] will allow us to build six submarines and an aircraft carrier every year,” Rogozin told reporters, adding that the number includes both nuclear and diesel-powered submarines.

As a result, the production output will surpass that of the Soviet era when Russia built an average of five submarines annually, he said.

Six submarines.  A year.  And an aircraft carrier.  Every year.

Complete and utter bologna.

For a more realistic take, consider Strategy Page:

The new Russian Graney (Yasen) class SSGN (nuclear powered cruise missile sub) has been delayed yet again. Undisclosed problems with the first Graney have postponed entering service for at least a year. That will mean, if the latest delay is the last one, the first Graney will enter service twenty years after construction began. These problems are not restricted to the Graney, as other new sub designs are also encountering numerous construction and design problems.Last February, the fifty man crew of the first Graney took their boat to sea, or at least around the harbor, for the first time. Sea trials were to begin in three months, but first the sub took baby steps to ensure that everything worked. These harbor trials were seen as major progress. Things went downhill again after that, with a growing number of delays as more and more problems were encountered.

Russian submarine building has been on life support since the Cold War ended in 1991. Many subs under construction at the end of the Cold War were cancelled, and the few that avoided that spent a decade or more waiting for enough money to get finished. The first Graney crew was put together six years ago, and has been training, and waiting, ever since. The crew now continues training on their new boat, which was supposed to have entered service by now.

Three years ago, construction began on a second Graney. Russia plans to complete six boats of this class by the end of the decade. Construction of the first Graney class boat, the Severodvinsk, began in 1993, but lack of money led to numerous delays. Originally, the Severodvinsk was to have entered service in 1998. Work on the Severodvinsk was resumed eight years ago. If work is not interrupted, the second Graney class boat should be ready in less than five years.

This says “complete six boats . . . by the end of the decade.”  And that’s a stretch.

And regarding aircraft carriers, does Rogozin the Ridiculous have any clue as how long they take to build?  The USS Gerald Ford began construction in 2005, and will be completed in 2015.  Ten years.  And we have decades in experience building CVs.  Now presumably the Russians will be building a much less advanced design, but they don’t have experience, and have a horrible track record at their shipyards.

An aircraft carrier a year.  Really.

But here’s a thought: maybe this is related to the earlier story regarding Rogozin’s demand that Russians make Russian military toys.  So maybe, just maybe, what he means is that Russia will build 6 toy subs and 1 toy aircraft carrier a year.

That’s certainly a far more realistic goal.

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  1. Nothing so demonstrates the sclerosis in the Russian State and economy than the collapse of even the military industrial complex. In your excellent interview in Amsterdam’s blog, you pointed out that the Putin article had many good points in analysis, but there was a real issue as to the will to and ability to set up institutions that can carry out and maintain the reforms. The continued failures of even the most command driven part of the state – the military – would indicate that there is more of an (at least) three step process involved. The first is correct analysis. The second the process of building state and (neglected) social institutions that allow freedom and/or limit arbitrary rule. This MUST include respecting the individual, and not acting expediently in the name of some collective good or Narod that absolves the actors of all criminality. Finally, and not least, the promotion of competence must be a paramount objective.

    It is very difficult to do this in any autocratic state where real power is exercised by one man or clique, unless the power is hedged or limited by emergency, tradition or some other factor. Even when this sometimes happened in the USSR, as during WW II, success was usually gained at a horrendous cost. What we have in Russia is a court system, much like the Tsarist court, except more heavily populated by tasteless slobs and crooks. To be govern effectively, the effect of such a court on society must be limited – competence must have its place. A case that comes to mind occurred During the reign of Louis XV during the War of the Austrian Succession. A new Chief of Artillery was appointed as a favor to one court faction (along with a whacking great stipend). Honor and political need thus satisfied, he was then given strict orders to in no way interfere in the running of this critical department – not even to communicate to his nominal subordinates. In today’s Russia, such a state of affairs might well be an improvement.

    In the post monarchic, nuclear armed political Ruritania that is Putin’s Russia, I cannot see Putin purposefully limiting his power so that institutions can be built. In his defense, let’s remember how unusual an act this would be: When George III asked what had become of Washington following the evacuation of British forces from New York, he was told that he had resigned and returned to private life. On Hearing this, George III commented that if Washington had done this he was the greatest man in the World. I don’t think Putin has this in him, especially given his upbringing and history.

    Even if he does, the style and curse of autocracy will not go away: political considerations will almost always triumph over competence. It is traditional in modern Russia. How else can we explain the miserable performance of the late soviet and post soviet arms industry? One disaster after another, with the technical triumphs marred by shoddy workmanship, maintenance and manufacturing technology.

    This isn’t all Putin’s fault by any means, but he seems to have done little to improve it. Being without a productive or legitimate tradition or history, the mitigating factors that often limit Autocracy are missing: Russia today is not the Tsarist state of even the French monarchy with hundreds of years of tradition behind them. It is as close to a de novo Distopia as is possible, but mercifully spared the ideological lunacy of a Pol Pot and a Year Zero.

    Analysis is fine, but Putin’s personality as publicly displayed argues against any improvement in institutions, or even in promoting competence at the expense of political gain or limiting personal whim.

    I hope I am wrong.

    Comment by sotos — February 2, 2012 @ 7:02 pm

  2. @Professor-LOL-next will be Little Orphanage Devushka Rogozina that says Oh Putin when you squeeze her (just like her namesake). He deserves a new category like uber-sycophant or a sycophant’s sycophant.

    Hey… a Rogozina baby doll that says Oh Putin will be very popular with Sublime and the boys in Berkely…but then I guess kind of difficult to market in Russia.

    @sotos-good comment. I am cynical and don’t believe he could give a pute about the Russian population so long as he maintains control and is a figure to be considered on the international stage.

    Comment by pahoben — February 2, 2012 @ 8:03 pm

  3. AFAIK, Putin had never held elected office before being appointed the Great Gopnik of All Russia. He’d never lead a team of people. Hence the over-reliance on personal ties. He’s an empty suit.

    Comment by So? — February 2, 2012 @ 9:01 pm

  4. Oh shite, I think I’ve almost described Obama as well.

    Comment by So? — February 2, 2012 @ 9:03 pm

  5. @SO-LOL-such an oversight.

    If GOSPLAN would have had Rogozin the Five Year plan would have included a fleet of interstellar faster than light spaceships with matching plastic models for children six and older.

    Comment by pahoben — February 2, 2012 @ 9:14 pm

  6. @Professor. BTW information finally released on Exxon’s two wells in Poland and the verdict is… not enough gas to light a Cohiba.

    It can be tough being the lone voice of reason 🙂

    Comment by pahoben — February 2, 2012 @ 9:23 pm


    Granit probes getting caught in cosmic rays is way less hilarious as presstitutes saying MF Global money just ‘vaporized’ after they got caught wiring money to JP Morgan in London…and the Reuters story from yesterday neglecting to mention that CFTC’s Gensler used to work for Corzine. Welcome to the Natural State boys, Chicagoland nationwide!

    And Professor for your benefit here’s Nomi Prins on the CME’s epic fail:

    The CME’s testimony stated that just past mid-night on October 31,st Christine Serwinski, the chief financial officer of MF Global’s North American division, and Edith O’Brien, a treasurer, told Mike Procajlo, an exchange auditor that about $700 million in customer money was transferred on October 27th, 28th and possibly October 26 from the broker-dealer side of the business to ‘meeting liquidity issues.’ The CME hadn’t noticed this while reviewing the firm’s books prior to bankruptcy. Another $175 million was used by MF Global UK.

    The CFTC disclosed that MF Global’s general counsel, Laurie Ferber notified them Monday evening, October 31st about “a significant shortfall in its segregated funds account”. Neither the SEC, nor the CME had picked up on this beforehand.

    As a broker-dealer registered with the SEC, MFGI was not just subject to CFTC rules, but also to the SEC’s customer protection rule that prohibits use of customer funds or securities to support proprietary trading or expenses. It also prohibits customer funds or assets from being pledged as collateral for the firm’s own trades or to raise funds, plus requires a reserve account be maintained that is bigger than their holdings – just in case.

    Comment by Mr. X — February 2, 2012 @ 11:03 pm

  8. Yeah, when Khrushchev said they were making missiles like sausages, what this really meant was things were not going all that well with sausages.

    Comment by Ivan — February 3, 2012 @ 12:18 am

  9. […] in the world. Streetwise Professor points to the US aircraft carrier programme, and notes that construction of the USS Gerald Ford is expected to take 10 years. If Russia took roughly the same amount of time to build a carrier, then it would have to have at […]

    Pingback by Six new Russian submarines and a new aircraft carrier – every year — February 3, 2012 @ 2:25 am

  10. I completely agree that Russia will struggle to build submarines (and aircraft carriers) on this kind of scale – it simply doesn’t have the infrastructure in place. I do wonder, though, whether it has designs on an international market and intends to sell most of the submarines it builds in the near future –

    Comment by Andy — February 3, 2012 @ 2:26 am

  11. […] Streetwise Professor and Siberian Light critically discuss Russia's ambitious plans, presented by vice-premier Dmitry Rogozin, to build an aircraft carrier and six submarines annually over the coming years. Tweet Streetwise Professor and Siberian Light critically discuss Russia's ambitious plans, presented by vice-premier Dmitry Rogozin, to build an aircraft carrier and six submarines annually over the coming years. […]

    Pingback by Russia: Realism of Rearmament Plans · Global Voices — February 3, 2012 @ 3:51 am

  12. Russians are really good at telling ridiculous lies that make themselves look foolish. Remember when the Central Bank said capital flight could not continue?

    Lying in a ludicrous manner is like a Russian national sport, and lying to yourself is the national passtime. That’s the main reason Russia is such a total failure as a country, it can’t see reality and can’t reform.

    Comment by La Russophobe — February 3, 2012 @ 7:25 am

  13. […] posted here: Streetwise Professor » Rogozin th&#1077 Ridiculous Strikes Again! ← The Top 10 Hottest New Toys for Christmas 2011 ~ Baby Dolls for […]

    Pingback by Streetwise Professor » Rogozin the Ridiculous Strikes Again! – Real Life Baby Dolls Online — February 3, 2012 @ 12:46 pm

  14. LOL looks like a big winner on Telegraph Avenue.

    Comment by pahoben — February 3, 2012 @ 10:35 pm

  15. I am VP of purchasing for the Free Speech Nickle and Dime store in Berkeley California. I would like to order all the Rogozina dolls you can provide-the ones that say Oh Putin. I do have one request-we would like the entire order to consist of anatomically correct MALE Baby Dolls. One of our customers-Mr Sublime Oblivion is raving about the comfort these provide and I can tell you-the boys in Berkeley are listening.

    Thanks for your prompt attention.

    Comment by Vice President of Purchasing — February 3, 2012 @ 10:49 pm

  16. If it’s diesel submarines for export, then it’s plausible.

    Comment by So? — February 3, 2012 @ 11:44 pm

  17. @So? Only slightly more plausible but still doubtful.

    After all their new DE attack sub program the “Lada” class (no I didn’t make that up, seriously….) has been cancelled completely in favor of upgrading older Kilo class subs due to severe problems in construction and major flaws in design of the Lada.

    Comment by Andrew — February 4, 2012 @ 9:03 am

  18. […] Streetwise Professor and Siberian Light critically discuss Russia's ambitious plans, presented by vice-premier Dmitry Rogozin, to build an aircraft carrier and six submarines annually over the coming years. […]

    Pingback by Official Russia | Russia: Realism of Rearmament Plans — February 8, 2012 @ 6:06 am

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