Russian Imperial Army--Synopsis of all Reforms from 1850s-1914. As covered in Menning's "Bayonet's Before Bullets"

Essay by Axis_of_EvilUniversity, Bachelor'sA+, November 2002

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THIS Synopsis, Entitled "Conclusions" by our professor was limited to one page, and as referenced above, is our synopsis of all the reforms the Russian Army underwent between the 1850s (just before the Crimean War) and 1914 (The outbreak of WWI and the Bolshevik Revolution that ended the "Imperial Army" and spawned the "Red Army."


As the nations of Europe edged closer and closer to what was an inevitable conflict, Russia was finally beginning to show serious advancement in modernizing its military--both in equipment, and (more importantly) in strategic and tactical applications. Realistically, the Russians had undergone two real-world conflicts that helped stimulate a complete overhaul of their mentality and approach to the future war that they conceded would eventually take place in Western Europe. On the eve of World War I, their military professionals had scrutinized the Russo-Turkish War and the Russo-Japanese War and had emplaced a reasonably efficient administration, backed by modernized tactics, army organization, and a newfound embracement (finally!) of the lethality of the bullet over the foolish 1000 yard bayonet charge.

In fact, the Russians, who were driven by an obsession to surpass, or at a minimum equal, their natural Germanic enemies' troop strength and stockpile of modern warfare assets, all but accomplished their goal. For example, even while focused on strengthening infantry tactics, they never allowed the overall combined arms concept go neglected and concentrated sufficient energy towards ensuring their artillery (the same can not necessarily be said for the cavalry, though strength and composition was modified) was ready to meet the challenge of supporting their infantry. By 1914, Germany's only advantage over Russia in regards to artillery was the amount of heavy artillery allotted to the corps arty-assets.

Unfortunately, all these reforms--a drawn out process that was initiated by Miliutin...