Putin reshuffles top Russian military officers
MOSCOW (AP) -- Russia's President Vladimir Putin has reshuffled the nation's top military brass following the defense minister's ouster.
Putin on Friday named Col.-Gen. Valery Gerasimov as the new chief of the armed forces' General Staff, to replace Gen. Nikolai Makarov. He also reshuffled several other top generals.
Putin fired Defense Minister Anatoly Serdyukov over a corruption scandal Tuesday in a move that surprised many because the powerful minister had previously enjoyed strong presidential support. Serdyukov was succeeded by Moscow region Governor Sergei Shoigu.
Serdyukov oversaw the nation's most radical defense reform in decades, which led to the dismissal of 200,000 officers and disbanded nine out of 10 military units. The effort was aimed at turning Russia's Soviet-style military into a leaner and more mobile force similar to Western armies.