Publication: Monitor Volume: 1 Issue: 45

? Since the three powerministers were dismissed on June 30, the Moscow media have beenfilled with speculation over who will replace them and have warned, like Segodnya on July 1, that the government crisiswon’t really be over until the new replacements are named. (Oneindication of how many Russians felt about the crisis itselfwas a report in the July 4 Kommersant- Daily that duringthe July 1 Duma vote, some deputies distributed a mock theaterprogram with the title "Do You Respect Me?") To replaceViktor Yerin as interior minister, most commentators look tohis deputy Gen. Yevgeniy Abramov. To fill the shoes of nationalities minister Nikolai Yegorov, many believe the most likely man tobe Yegorov’s deputy Vyacheslav Mikhailov, who is currently leadingthe Russian delegation at the Chechen peace talks. But most papers suggest that there are at least two competitors for thejob which Federal Security Service chief Sergei Stepashin hadto give up: Both men, Anatoly Safronov and Viktor Zorin, areKGB generals. As Stepashin’s deputy, Safronov might be expectedto get the nod, but he has been deeply involved in the disastrous Chechen war. Zorin, who heads the FSS counterintelligence serviceand who backed Yeltsin during the October 1993 suppression of the Russian Supreme Soviet, would thus seem to have the betterchance.

Chernomyrdin Looks for Military Allies