Sharapovo is one of two leadership relocation sites near Moscow [the other is nearby at Chekhov]. Another is located at Chaadayevka, some 650 kilometers southeast of Moscow near Penza. Sharapovo and Chekhov were constructed in the late 1950s, and underwent modernization and expansion beginning in the early 1970s. Although these two installations may constitute one interrelated complex, the US intelligence community believes that the facilities at Sharapovo are probably for the wartime Defense Council and those at Chekhov for the General Staff. According to a 1983 US intelligence assessment, the deep underground facilities at these complexes for the National Command Authority are "harder, deepter and much less vulnerable than previously estimated."
The support infrastructure for these facilities is substantial. A highly redundant communications system, consisting of both on-site and remote elements, supports these complexes and permits the leadership to send orders and receive reports through the crisis management structure. These installations also have highly effective life support systems capable of protecting their occupants against chemical and biological attack. Such arrangements may enable independent operations to be carried out from these facilities for many months.
Sources and Methods
- Moscow builds bunkers against nuclear attack By Bill Gertz THE WASHINGTON TIMES 01 April 1997 pg 1
- SOVIET MILITARY POWER various editions
- "Soviet Wartime Management: The Role of Civil Defense in Leadership Continuity" Interagency Intelligence Memorandum NI IIM83-10005JX
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