President Aleksandar Vucic said on Friday that moral education would be reintroduced in the Serbian Army starting in January.
“On the order of a certain Mr. Mur (possibly Moore), moral education was abolished in the military. And this is important to us. It has nothing to do with politics, but with patriotism. At the time, we were told that we do not need patriotism, but we do, and we will reintroduce it starting in January,” said Vucic.
As he pointed out, “soldiers will know who and why they are protecting.”
Vucic added that by the end of 2019, “nine Airbus helicopters will arrive in Serbia” – six for the military and three for the police.
The Army will be buying what is necessary, “such as, for example, missiles,” he continued, and announced extended training of military pilots.
“We need to define those places where we need to fill up the capacities. We will strive to have the ladies who serve in the Army, who find it difficult to overcome infantry barriers, in those units where they can carry out their tasks, and above all, to strengthen our special forces,” he says.
Vucic added that so-called battalions and brigades would be formed once again.
“To be able to defend ourselves if somebody attacks us. Sectors cannot defend individually, but must do it together. We will change that.”
Vucic stressed that there is “not even a hint of an indication” that anyone wishes to attack our country – “but the Army exists in order to defend its state and protect its people.”
“No army in the world, except maybe two, exist in order to attack somebody else, but to protect their country,” said Vucic.
He also announced that the 2018 military budget will be about RSD 70 billion higher than this year.
Vucic added that Serbia’s military spending is being done “in a transparent and legal manner.”
Asked if the military budget covers the overhaul of the MiG-29 warplanes donated by Russia, he replied:
“Everything is envisaged for the six (donated MiGs). And we have a way of paying for the others, we won’t owe anything to anyone.”
Vucic, who is the supreme commander of the Serbian Army, on Friday received a report on state of the VS from the minister of defense and the chief of the General Staff, and said afterwards that a low standard (of living) among professional members of the VS was the main problem.