Primakov's choice, Grigory Rapota, held off the competition to become new boss at the floundering arms state company Rosvooruzheniye
The appointment on November 27 of Grigory Rapota, former deputy director of the Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR), as head of the Rosvooruzheniye state company was preceded by an all-out struggle. The main participants were Yevgeny Primakov, who supported Rapota, Yuri Maslyukov, who was trying to have Major General Viktor Mironov or Vice Admiral Sergei Krasnov appointed as Rosvooruzheniye general director, and the presidential staff which until recently backed Yevgeny Ananyev.*
The latter's fate was sealed a few months ago, after Viktor Chernomyrdin and Yakov Urinson left the government. It was more difficult with Yuri Maslyukov's candidates. According to our sources, several days before the presidential edict was signed, the first vice prime minister was pushing for the appointment of Viktor Mironov, in charge of arms trade at the Defense Ministry.
However, his candidacy was not okayed by the special services, which also turned down Sergei Krasnov, Maslyukov's second choice.*
It is not known what the special services did not like about Viktor Mironov. As concerns Sergei Krasnov, he was apparently blamed for his part in the "Ecuadorian deal." According to informal sources, in 1995, when Mr. Krasnov was one of the officials responsible for delivering a large shipment of arms and military hardware to Ecuador, the manufacture date on some of the Igla antiaircraft missile systems was falsified (an earlier production date was postdated), provoking a sharp reaction in Ecuador.*
Boris Kuzyk, former presidential aide on military-technical cooperation, who was promised a "good job" by Boris Yeltsin upon his discharge, was also on the short list for Rosvooruzheniye general director. But this did not work out either.*
As a result, the Rosvooruzheniye state company will now be headed by Yevgeny Primakov's man, who, as far as is ... Read more