All posts tagged: historical perspective

Why Zelensky Replaced Zaluzhny With Syrsky

Why Zelensky Replaced Zaluzhny With Syrsky

[ad_1] On Thursday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky announced that he was removing General Valerii Zaluzhny from command of the military, and promoting General Oleksandr Syrsky, the head of the ground forces, to replace him. Predictably and understandably, there has already been a great deal of hand-wringing about Ukraine’s president cashiering his top general. Such concern is misplaced, not merely because it may be misinformed, but because it bespeaks a misunderstanding of sound civil-military relations. Begin with what is actually known rather than rumored or surmised about the president and his general: that there has been tension for some time, possibly for as long as a year now. This rules out one possibility, which is that the dismissal reflects a major dispute about manpower, and specifically about conscription. In fact, Ukraine already has male conscription. There are real questions about mobilization and whether to call up those who have already served or who are currently exempt, but this debate seems to be more recent than the tension between Zelensky and Zaluzhny. Moreover, such decisions—involving the delicate …