Published February 27, 2013
MOSCOW – Russian President Vladimir Putin has called on the country's top brass to deliver a drastic upgrade of the armed forces in the next three years to fend off attempts from abroad to "tip the strategic balance" in the world.
In his address to Russia's defense ministry and top military officials, Putin said Wednesday that Russia is witnessing "insistent attempts" to tip the balance and complained about U.S. attempts to set up a new missile defense system.
Russia is spending some 23 trillion rubles ($750 billion) through 2020 to revamp its aging army.
Putin also blasted the legacy of former Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov who was dismissed in November last year amid a corruption scandal involving billions of rubles reportedly embezzled by the ministry and affiliated firms.