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Support Brief No pages
) i september cbno.
CiA HISTORICAL REVIEW PROGRAMJ!TIZtft
CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY Office of Research and Reports
CHANGING SOVIET CIVIL DEFENSE dMCEPTS
Accumulating evidence indicates that there has been significant controversy over Soviet civil defense policy since an apparont rejection by the Soviet leadersf proposals to construct massive, deep-level air raid shelters for the urban population and, further, that tills controversy has recently been resolved in favorontinued widespread civil defense effortariety of protective measures. The alternativeto be afforded probably includes strategic urban evacuation, the continued use and some additionalof basement and freestanding shelter, theand use of potential fallout shelter areas, and the use of self-constructed "covers" located underground in the form of dugouts or covered earth trenches. of the conflict over the shelter program and itjs resolution is manifested in statements by top Soviet leaders, in recent pronouncements on civil defense published in the USSR and the European Satellites, and in the unusual stress placed on civil defenseecent paramilitary congress.
Construction of air raid shelters probablyubject of discussion in high government levels of the USSH about In February Premier Khrushchevonversation with the Norwegian ambassador during which the latter asked Khrushchev what the USSR was doing about civil defense. Khrushchev stated that "they" had discussed tho problem thoroughly in the Council ofand had become convinced that nothing effective could be done. 1/ Further evidence of high-level civil defense discussion can be foundemark by Mikoyan inhen hn stated,ave seen films showing mock towns, bridges, and tho like to test the destructive power /of nuclear wcapons7. aw this picture,as appalled,aid, 'Whyupport billions /to be spent/ on bomb shelters?'" 2/ The remarks of Khrushchev and Mikoyan laken together demonstrate the fact that members of the Soviet Council Of Ministers were briefod on civil defense problems and that both men apparently felt that effective civil defense was unobtainable. Mlkoyan's remark about "bllMons" for shelters seems to Indicate that the question of massive, deep-level shelters for the Soviet.urban population had been examined and
found to be too costly.
ln spite of tbe apparent concern of Khrushchev and Mikoyan over the offcctlveness and cost of large-scalo civil defense efforts, there is now good evidence that debato over civil defense policy has continued in the USSR and that the controversy has been resolved in favor of thoso whoalid civil defense program can be established without reliance on heavy blast shelters. Two significant articles appeared in the2 issue of Voycnnyyeagazine published by DOSAAF, the Soviet paramilitary society that has as one of itspublic civil defense training in the USSR. In oneieutenant General (Engineering Troops) Ye. Leoshenya wrote, "Some incompetont personnel think that the only reliable means of defense against nuclear weapons arc special, durable shelters, built deepand that all other means of dofense are useless.iewpoint is entirely erroneous... / The second article,nown Soviet civil defense official, Colonel General. Tolstikov, stated,heof new, superpowerful types of woapons of mass destruction has produced erroneous views among certain comrades on the problem of safeguarding the populationkeptical attitude toward the possibilities of resolving this problem. Engineer-technical measures /that is, air raid shelters7 havearticularly great amount of doubt. In this connoctlon, those persons who haveassumed that protective measures Include only the construction of shelters (uber.hischa) have ignored other ways and means of defense. It is clear that such views cannot be considered correct. Protectiveasyyc-a ) arc- effeel in mears o: or example, garages) movie houses, transport andtunnels, and the like should be adapted as cover (ukrytlya) for personnel, as well as for use in the econo-my...
A similar reflectionecent decision on civil defense policy is foundungarian civil defenseof The writer of an article onof emergency sheltershc shelter will continue to be one of the most important tools inhose who belittle the structures that offer less protection and who trust only ln superstructures are wrong... .thc framework of peaceful constructive work, one cannot provide mass shelters, for this would involve very great unproductive economic investmentroat burden... /
The article goes on to indicate that some of the advocated defensive structures offering "less protection" include converted basements and covered trench shelters.
The continued importance of air raid shelters was endorsed in Poland inhen the commander of civil defensehe experience of Hiroshima, Nagasaki, and proving grounds research prove that much can be done... . The importance of shelters is recognized /ine have many of them... /
2 an article appeared in Zolnierz Wolnosci (Warsaw) that stressed the necessity for civil defense In regard to shelter, the article stated thatshelter (that is, formally designed and constructed air raid shelters) could not be built to accommodate the entire populationonly civil defense workers and those engaged in industries contributing to the military effort could be provided for by the government. The remainder of the civilian population must be evacuated as far as possible from large cities and other targets of nuclear attack. 7/
The well-publicized proceedings of the Fifth DOSAAF Congress held in May2 appear toublic endorsement of the need for continued and Improved Soviet civil defense. Attended by many leading military figures, the Congress should signal the end to most controversy on civil defense in the USSR. Any doubts as to the validity of civil defense activity were dispelled when. Chuykov, speaking at the Congress "on behalf of the Soviet Armed Forces and R. Ya. Malinovskly, Minister of Defense,tated, "Civil defense now must beas one of the basic elements in over-all of the country for defense." asic element of nationalivil defense program withoutfor shelter would be meaningless.
Recent Soviet Bloc civil defense literature andprovide insight into currently emphasizedmeasures. First,oviet civilpublications have given increasing treatment to strategic urban evacuation. 8/ Second, recent articles stress that self-constructed, covered trench shelters (orre sound means of defense against falloutand shock wave,oldold attenuation of radiation in addition to protection from "the direct effect of the shock wave" and flying debris. 9/ Third, the use of prepared, formally constructed air raid shelters is
still advocatedIncluding both tho basement andtypes. It is said that these types of shelter are intended to protect personnel from "all means of mass Fourth, Soviet civil defense literature is Including increasing references to tho use of suchshelter as caves, underpasses, cellars, and internal areas of large buildings. It thus appears that tho USSR Inoncept of some protection for everyoneartial strategic evacuation in the case ofho use of formal sholter and adaptable shelter space when available,he preparation and use of self-constructed, covered earth sheltor or dugouts for those lacking other Presumably the latter could be used by urban' evacuees as well as local inhabitants in small towns and rural areas. (The endorsement of adaptable space and homemade shelter does not necessarily exclude the possibility that some good sholter is being prepared in citios for personnel of Important factories and communications or control jgroups.)
There are several advantagesrogram of mixed protection such as that which is Indicated to be current Soviet civil defense policy. rogram avoids the coat of building high ovorpressure urban air raid shelters, and at the same time the projected use of adaptable shelter aroas and covers permits assigning to everyone some type of protection. Finally, the program should permit the earlier attainment of readiness in terms of shelter than could be reachedlan for constructing numerous heavy sheltors for tbe urban population of the USSR. esire for combat readiness has been expressed in Soviet military,osture of constant readiness is Increasingly stressed ln civil defense literature of
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