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Table of Contents

Introduction: overview; background in Russian history and culture /The Spetsnaz Tradition: special units of the Bolshevik Red Guard, and behind-the-lines NKVD operations in World War II /Cold Warriors: foundation by GRU, 1950 /Operations 1960s-70s: Angola, Czechoslovakia, etc, and order-of-battle 1980 /Operations in Afghanistan, and order-of-battle /Spetsnaz after the USSR: the turmoil of the 1990s /Tajikistan and Moldova, imitation units in post-Soviet states /Operations in Chechnya, the Chechen Spetsnaz /Modern Spetsnaz: increasing strength and importance /Naval Spetsnaz, and order-of-battle 2013 /Special Weapons /Index

Promotional Information

Special forces have an esoteric appeal, and the Spetsnaz are a crucial chapter in their overall history. Perfect for serious academic study in the subject as well as those with a more general interest, while the unique collection of photographs and images are an ideal guide for modellers and wargamers.

About the Author

Professor Mark Galeotti, formerly senior lecturer in international history at Keele University, is Clinical Professor of Global Affairs, New York University. He is a former Foreign Office adviser on Russian security affairs, and for 15 years (1991-2006) wrote a monthly column on this for Jane's Intelligence Review. Johnny Shumate works as a freelance illustrator living in Nashville, Tennessee. He began his career in 1987 after graduating from Austin Peay State University. Most of his work is rendered in Adobe Photoshop using a Cintiq monitor. His greatest influences are Angus McBride, Don Troiani, and Edouard Detaille.


"Spetsnaz: Russia's Special Forces chronicles everything from their origins to recent headlines. The Spetsialnogo naznacheniya (Special Designation) troops have carved out a reputation for ruthless efficiency, proficiency and ferocity. However, the Spetsnaz seem to be rather misunderstood and to some extent even mythologized. Mark Galeotti, an internationally recognized expert, traces their history while outlining the evolution of their organization, missions and character. Their uniforms, equipment and weapons are detailed in depth. Galeotti shows how the Spetsnaz are the cornerstone of a new Russian way of war that stresses deception, surprise and speed, ensuring that they will maintain their elite status for the foreseeable future." --Toy Soldier & Model Figure magazine

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