Russian Defense Minister Causes Uproar With Call to Replace Famed AK-47

Russia’s Defense Minister, Anatoly Serdyukov, set off a firestorm of debate in Russia after saying that his military’s pride and joy, the Kalashnikov and Dragunov SVDs sniper rifles, are “morally outdated” and that he’s considering a plan to buy foreign-made small arms.

The comments were made during a private meeting with members of the lower house of Russia’s parliament just before the New Year, according to Russian media accounts. Serdyukov introduced the plan to buy foreign-made guns as part of larger military reforms that include buying French-made Mistrall Class helicopter carriers for the Russian navy.

The comments caused Russian military officials to jump to the defense of their workhorse weapons.

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