Special Purpose Command

The Special Purpose Command (Komandovaniye Spetsialnogo Naznacheniya) was a formation of the Russian Air Force, the strongest among the tactical aviation and anti-aircraft groupings. Its zone of responsibility amounted to 1.3 million km², taking in 40 million people, as well as the country's capital, Moscow. On July 1, 2009 it was superseded by the Aerospace Defense Operational Strategic Command (ru:Объединённое стратегическое командование воздушно-космической обороны).[1]

As a result of the air force reforms implemented on June 1, 1998, the Moscow Air Defence District of the PVO and the 16th Air Army of the VVS became a single entity, the Moscow District of the Air Force and Air Defense. According to Krasnaya Zvezda of 16 December 2002, the former Moscow District of the VVS and PVO was reorganised as the Special Purpose Command in September 2002.[2] Interfax says the Moscow District was split into the reactivated 16th Air Army, a tactical force, and the Central Air Defence Zone, an air defense force.[3]

Pyotr Butowski, writing in 2004, seems to indicate that the Special Purpose Command (he makes no mention of ‘the Central Air Defence Zone’) is merely essentially a redesignation of the former Moscow District. The rearrangement of the Moscow District of the VVS and PVO into the Special Purpose Command is apparently connected with plans in the long term for the military-space defense of the central industrial region.

The initial commanding officer of the KSpN was General Lieutenant Yuri Solovyov, later promoted to Colonel-General.

Moscow District of the Air Force and Air Defence Force
Special Purpose Command
Flag of the Soviet Air Force
Activec. 1945 – present
Special Purpose Command: 2002 – July 1, 2009[1]
CountrySoviet Union Soviet Union
Russia Russia
BranchFlag of the Soviet Air Force.svg Soviet Air Force
Flag of the Russian Air Force.svg Russian Air Force
SizeWorld War II: several air divisions
Today: ~ 10–15 air regiments
Marshal Anatoly Konstantinov (dismissed 1988)

Moscow Military District air forces

In the last days of the Soviet Union there was a considerable Soviet Air Defence Forces presence, and a smaller Air Forces presence, in the Moscow Military District. The Air Forces of the Moscow Military District consisted of a reconnaissance regiment, the 47th Guards Separate Reconnaissance Aviation Regiment at Shatalovo flying Su-24MPs, and the 9th Fighter Aviation Division (9 iad), at Kubinka, with three regiments.[4] The division incorporated the 32nd Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment, also at Shatalovo, with MiG-23MLDs, the 234th Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment at Kubinka with MiG-29s, and the 274th Fighter-Bomber Aviation Regiment at Migalovo (274 apib) with Su-17s. Also part of the force was a ground signals regiment, the 131st. There was also a transport squadron, an independent helicopter regiment, and an independent helicopter squadron for electronic warfare.

32nd Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment served in Cuba as part of 'Operation Anadyr' during the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1963.[5] The regiment was temporarily renamed 213th Fighter Aviation Regiment while in Cuba. It was disbanded in 1989.

In October 1990 the 1080th Red Banner Training Aviation Center for retraining of personnel im. V.P. Chkalov was activated in Borisoglebsk, Voronezh Oblast, from the 796th Center for Preparation of Officers for Fighter and Fighter-Bomber Aviation, and the Borisoglebsk Higher Military Aviation School of Pilots. It came under the command of the Air Forces of the Moscow Military District. It comprised four instructor aviation regiments, the fourth being the 343rd Fighter Aviation Regiment at Sennoy with MiG-29s.

Joseph Stalin's son Vasily Stalin commanded the Moscow district air forces from June 1948 to August 1952.[6] He was succeeded by General Colonel Stepan Krasovsky (1952–53), Lieutenant General Stepan Rybanov (June 1953 – 1959), and, later, Lieutenant General Igor Dmitriev (ru:Дмитриев, Игорь Михайлович) (1983–1989) and Nikolai Antoshkin (ru:Антошкин, Николай Тимофеевич) (1989–93).[7]

Also part of the Moscow District air forces was the 4th Centre for Combat Employment and Retraining of Personnel at Lipetsk.

2007 structure

The 16th Air Army was the most important formation of the Special Purpose Command. Initially formed during the Second World War as a part of the Soviet Air Force, it was from c.2002–2009 the tactical air force component of the Moscow Military District, headquartered at Kubinka.

In 2009 the Russian Air Force was extensively reorganised. This structure is not current. Combat Aircraft magazine's June 2010 issue gives some details of the new structure.


  1. ^ a b http://vz.ru/society/2009/7/4/303726.html
  2. ^ Olga Bozhyeva, 'New special command replaces Moscow Air Force and Air Defence District, Krasnaya Zvezda, 16 December 2002.
  3. ^ See also Interfax, 5 January 2002
  4. ^ http://www.ww2.dk/new/air%20force/army/vvsmvo.htm
  5. ^ http://www.airforce.ru/history/cold_war/cuba/index_en.htm, see also ru:32-й гвардейский истребительный авиационный полк (СССР)
  6. ^ Father's little watchman, Time magazine, 1950. Time says Air Defence Forces, but this is incorrect. Exact time period from Holm/Feskov et al 2013 (ref 9).
  7. ^ http://www.ww2.dk/new/air%20force/army/vvsmvo.htm
  8. ^ Structure drawn from Air Forces Monthly, July 2007 issue, p.82.
  9. ^ An earlier report at www8.brinkster.com had said the 9th PVO Division's 606th Guards Air Defence Missile Regiment at Elektrostal had the S-400, though this now has been changed.
  10. ^ Michael Holm, 1st Air Defence Army for Special Use, accessed December 2012.

External links

  • Woezik, Rene van, and Lok, Joris Janssen, "Working up to leaving: despite withdrawal, the Soviet Air Force in Germany is being modernised", Jane's Defence Weekly, Vol. 16, No. 10, Sept 7, 1991 p415(2) (ISSN 0265-3818) Jane's Information Group.
  • Soviet ORBAT from last years in Germany (in Russian)
  • https://archive.is/20080110072449/http://www8.brinkster.com/vad777/russia/air/va/16va_mvo.htm (in Russian)
  • www.victory.mil.ru
  • http://oko-planet.su/politik/politikarm/13853-v-rossijskoj-armii-sozdano-komandovanie-vozdushno.html – new Operational-Strategic Command for Air and Space Defence reported. The command will be established by the end of 2010 and located at Balashikha near Moscow, where the previous 1st Air Defence Corps was located.
16th Air Army

The 16th Red Banner Air Army (Russian: 16-я воздушная Краснознамённая армия) was the most important formation of the Special Purpose Command. Initially formed during the Second World War as a part of the Soviet Air Force, it was from its 2002 reformation to its 2009 disbandment the tactical air force component of the Moscow Military District. The 16th Air Army took part in the Battle of Berlin with 28 Aviation divisions and 7 Separate aviation regiments, and was located with the GSFG in East Germany until 1994. Withdrawn to Kubinka in that year, the army was disbanded and reformed as a corps in 1998.

2008 Russian military reform

Significant reforms of the Russian Armed Forces were announced in October 2008 under Defence Minister Anatoliy Serdyukov, and major structural reorganisation began in 2009. The stated aims of the reform are to reorganize the structure and the chain of command in the Russian army, and to reduce it in size.Key elements of the reforms announced in October 2008 included:

reducing the armed forces to a strength of one million by 2012;

reducing the number of officers;

centralising officer training from 65 military schools into 10 'systemic' military training centres;

creating a professional NCO corps;

reducing the size of the central command;

introducing more civilian logistics and auxiliary staff;

elimination of cadre-strength formations;

reorganising the reserves; reorganising the army into a brigade system;

reorganising air forces into an air base system instead of regiments.There had previously been several reform attempts such as the 1997 plan under defence minister Igor Sergeyev and the 2003 programme of President Putin (‘Urgent Tasks for the Development of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation’), the latter of which was very similar to the 2008 programme, as it emphasized already the need for reductions in personnel strength, a gradual decrease in the use of conscripts in favour of professional soldiers, the creation of a professional NCO corps and drastic changes to officer training and education. The 2003 program however moved at a very slow pace, mainly due to the unwillingness of the military to reform.

Borisovsky Khotilovo (air base)

Borisovsky Khotilovo (also given as Borisovskiy, Borisovsky, and Khatilovo) is an air base in Tver Oblast, Russia located 24 km south of the town of Bologoye. It is an interceptor base with 3 groups of fan revetments. It is home to 790 IAP (790th Fighter Order of Kutuzov Aviation Regiment) flying 38 MiG-25 aircraft during the Cold War and MiG-31s through the 1990s.

Kubinka (air base)

Kubinka (Russian: Кубинка) is an air base in Moscow Oblast, Russia located 5 km northwest of Kubinka. In close proximity to Moscow, the Kubinka facility showcases the best of the Russian Air Force to the general public.

The 82nd aviation detachment (separate) arrived at the base in 1935, joined in 1938 by the 11th and 24th Aviation Regiments. Personnel of these units field-tested the advanced Yak-1 and LaGG-3 fighters and defended Moscow during the Second World War. After the war, the base became home to the 324th Svirskaya Fighter Aviation Division from November 1945. In November 1950, the whole 324th Fighter Aviation Division was redeployed to Korea, and the base was taken over by the 9th Fighter Aviation Division from February 1951.Units which have been stationed at Kubinka include:

237th Centre for Display of Aviation Equipment (237 TsPAT) flying MiG-29E, Su-17C, Su-24, Su-25, and Su-27 during the 1990s (with one exception given as 239 TsPAT in Yefim Gordon's Su-24 book.) The regiment, which has inherited the traditions of the 19 OIAP (1938–1944) and the 176 Gv IAP (1944–1950), was formed under the number 234 in November 1950. It arrived at Kubinka at the beginning of 1952. On 15 January 1989 it was renamed the 237th Composite Aviation Regiment (Demonstration) (237 SAP(P)). It became the 237 TsPAT on 13 February 1992 and then gained the title 'named for Air Marshal I.N. Kozhedub' on 10 August 1993.

234th Guards Instructional Interceptor Aviation Regiment (234 Gv IIAP) flying MiG-23MLD and MiG-29 aircraft.

378th Independent Composite Aviation Squadron (378 OSAE) flying Mil Mi-8 helicopters.

29 Gv IAP (during the 1950s).

9th Fighter Aviation Division (November 1952 – 1993)Most units at Kubinka were subordinated up until 2009-2010 to the Special Purpose Command of the Russian Air Force.

The 32nd Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment was based at Kubinka from February 1950 to 1962-63. The regiment was subordinated to the 9th Fighter Aviation Division. It was then reformed at the base after being deployed to Cuba as part of Operation Anadyr. The regiment initially flew MiG-19s but by 1962 was flying MiG-21F-13s. The regiment was still in place in the late 1980s. From 1968 to 1989 it was part of the 9th Fighter Aviation Division, stationed at Shatalovo (air base), Smolensk Oblast. The 32nd Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment was formed in 1941 as the 434th Fighter Aviation Regiment. It became 32nd Guards Fighter Aviation Regiment by an order of the People's Commissariat for Defence (Soviet Defence Ministry, NKO) in November 1942. The regiment was disbanded on 1 July 1989.

List of corps and divisions of the Russian Air Force

This is an incomplete list of corps and Aviation Divisions of the Russian Air Force and Russian Air Defence Force (PVO) active from 1992 to the present.

Moscow Air Defence District

The Order of Lenin Moscow Air Defence District was a formation of the Soviet Air Defence Forces and the Russian Air Defence Forces, which existed from 1954 to 1998, to fulfill the tasks of anti-aircraft defense of administrative and economic facilities. The district administration was in Moscow.

The Moscow Air Defence District has a long history, dating back to the Second World War. During the war the defence of Moscow was carried out, in part, by the 1st Air Defence Corps and the 6th Fighter Aviation Corps PVO. As part of these formations at the beginning of massive Nazi air raids had more than 600 fighters; more than 1,000 guns of small and medium calibers; 350 machine guns; 124 fixed anti-aircraft barrage balloons; 612 stations; and 600 anti-aircraft searchlights. The presence of such large forces, skillful management organisation foiled enemy attempts to inflict massive air strikes. Only 2.6% of the total number of Axis aircraft flew in the outskirts of Moscow as a result of their efforts. Air defence forces defending Moscow destroyed 738 enemy aircraft. In addition, assaults by the 6th Fighter Aviation Corps inflicted heavy blows, destroyed 567 enemy aircraft on the ground. Overall, the Air Defence Forces destroyed 1,305 aircraft, and in combat with the enemy armies of Nazi Germany and its allies, alongside the Air Force, destroyed 450 tanks and 5,000 military vehicles.

The Moscow district air defence had been provided during the Second World War by initially the Moscow PVO Corps Region. The Corps Region Headquarters, then formed the Moscow Front PVO from 6 April 1942 – 10 July 1943. In turn, the Moscow Front PVO was redesignated as Headquarters, Special Moscow PVO Army.

Until 1950, MiG-15 interceptor regiments were concentrated in the Moscow District to protect the capital against U.S. bomber attack. After 1950 significant elements, the 64th Fighter Aviation Corps, were redeployed to fight in the Korean War.

In 1948 the North-Western Air Defence District was redesignated the Moscow Air Defence Region, which became the Moscow Air Defence District in 1950. For its great contribution to strengthening the defense power of the Soviet state and its armed defense, success in combat and political training and in connection with the 50th anniversary of the Soviet Army and the Navy by the Decree of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR of June 22, 1968, the Moscow Air Defense District was awarded the "Order of Lenin". The Order was handed over to the Moscow Air Force and Air Defence District for continuity.

The district's commander, Marshal of Aviation Anatoly Konstantinov, was replaced shortly before the Mathias Rust affair in 1988 for insufficient support of Mikhail Gorbachev's perestroika policy.


PowerShell is a task automation and configuration management framework from Microsoft, consisting of a command-line shell and associated scripting language. Initially a Windows component only, known as Windows PowerShell, it was made open-source and cross-platform on 18 August 2016 with the introduction of PowerShell Core. The former is built on .NET Framework while the latter on .NET Core.

In PowerShell, administrative tasks are generally performed by cmdlets (pronounced command-lets), which are specialized .NET classes implementing a particular operation. These work by accessing data in different data stores, like the file system or registry, which are made available to PowerShell via providers. Third-party developers can develop their own cmdlets and add them to PowerShell. Sets of cmdlets may be combined into scripts.

PowerShell provides full access to COM and WMI, enabling administrators to perform administrative tasks on both local and remote Windows systems as well as WS-Management and CIM enabling management of remote Linux systems and network devices. PowerShell also provides a hosting API with which the PowerShell runtime can be embedded inside other applications. These applications can then use PowerShell functionality to implement certain operations, including those exposed via the graphical interface. This capability has been used by Microsoft Exchange Server 2007 to expose its management functionality as PowerShell cmdlets and providers and implement the graphical management tools as PowerShell hosts which invoke the necessary cmdlets. Other Microsoft applications including Microsoft SQL Server 2008 also expose their management interface via PowerShell cmdlets.PowerShell includes its own extensive, console-based help (similar to man pages in Unix shells) accessible via the Get-Help cmdlet. Local help contents can be retrieved from the Internet via Update-Help cmdlet. Alternatively, help from the web can be acquired on a case-by-case basis via the -online switch to Get-Help.

Russian Air Force

The Russian Air Force (Russian: Военно-воздушные cилы России, tr. Voyenno-Vozdushnye Sily Rossii, literally "military air forces of Russia") is a branch of the Russian Aerospace Forces, the latter being formed on 1 August 2015 with the merger of the Russian Air Force and the Russian Aerospace Defence Forces. The modern Russian Air Force was originally established on 7 May 1992 following Boris Yeltsin's creation of the Ministry of Defence; however, the Russian Federation's air force can trace its lineage and traditions back to the Imperial Russian Air Service (1912–1917) and the Soviet Air Forces (1918–1991).

The Russian Navy has its own independent air arm, the Russian Naval Aviation, which is the former Soviet Aviatsiya Voyenno-morskogo Flota (lit. "Aviation of the military-sea fleet"), or AV-MF.

Russian Armed Forces

The Russian Armed Forces (Russian: Вооружённые Си́лы Росси́йской Федера́ции, tr. Vooruzhonnije Síly Rossíyskoj Federátsii) are the military forces of the Russian Federation, established after the dissolution of the Soviet Union. On 7 May 1992, Boris Yeltsin signed a presidential decree establishing the Russian Ministry of Defence and placing all Soviet Armed Forces troops on the territory of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic under Russian control. The Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces is the President of Russia. The Russian Armed Forces were formed in 1992. The Russian Armed Forces is one of the world's largest military forces. It is also the world's second most powerful military and the world's second largest arms exporter.Under Russian federal law, the RuAF along with the Federal Security Service (FSB)'s Border Troops, the National Guard, the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MVD), the Federal Protective Service (FSO), the Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR), and EMERCOM's civil defence form Russia's military services and are under direct control of the Security Council of Russia.

S-400 missile system

The S-400 Triumf (Russian: C-400 Триумф, Triumph; NATO reporting name: SA-21 Growler), previously known as the S-300 PMU-3, is an anti-aircraft weapon system developed in the 1990s by Russia's Almaz Central Design Bureau as an upgrade of the S-300 family. It has been in service with the Russian Armed Forces since 2007. The S-400 uses four missiles to fill its performance envelope: the very-long-range 40N6 (400 km), the long-range 48N6 (250 km), the medium-range 9M96E2 (120 km) and the short-range 9M96E (40 km). The S-400 was described by The Economist in 2017 as "one of the best air-defence systems currently made".

Soviet Air Defence Forces

The Soviet Air Defence Forces (Russian: войска ПВО, voyska protivovozdushnoy oborony, voyska PVO, V-PVO, lit. Anti-Air Defence Troops; and formerly protivovozdushnaya oborona strany, PVO strany, lit. Anti-Air Defence of the Nation) was the air defence branch of the Soviet Armed Forces. Formed in 1941, it continued being a service branch of the Russian Armed Forces after 1991 until it was merged into the Air Force in 1998. Unlike Western air defence forces, V-PVO was a branch of the military unto itself, separate from the Soviet Air Force (VVS) and Air Defence Troops of Ground Forces. During the Soviet period it was generally ranked third in importance of the Soviet services, behind the Strategic Missile Troops and the Ground Forces.

Voronezh Malshevo (air base)

Voronezh Malshevo (also Malshevo, Mal'shevo, Voronezh Southwest, Baltimor) is an air base in Russia located 7 km southwest of Voronezh.

Up until late 2009 it was the home of the 105th Composite Aviation Division and 455th Bomber Aviation Regiment, both with 16th Air Army/Special Purpose Command, the air forces command of the Moscow Military District. Following the air force reforms of 2009-10, it became the headquarters of the 7000th Air Base.

Warfare.ru says:

"unit # 23326. 7000th Guard Borisov-Pomeransk Double Red Banner Order Suvorov Airbase. Address: 394055, Voronezh. ex 105 comb div + 455 bbr, 183, 47 recce, 89 attack rgts. Planned staff 2009: 24 Su-24M, 4 An-30, 1 Mi-8, ? 2 Su-34. 2010: 2 sqdn Su-24M, 1 sqdn Su-24MR, Mig-25RB+ An-30. 20.10.2011 Su-24 crashed during landing in Amur distr, pilots dead."

The Natural Resources Defense Council listed it as a nuclear bomber base in a nuclear war study. However, no other sources on Long Range Aviation list it as a bomber base.

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