President Putin got the legislature to go along with one of his major military reforms; taking much control of the military away from the generals and admirals. The Russian military high command has always given the military commanders authority that the Secretary of Defense has in America. Putin realized that the U.S. approach makes it easier to deal with corruption and incompetence if his Defense Minister had a say in things like training exercises, field operations and domestic base inspections. No longer can generals stonewall Defense Ministry queries with "it's a military matter that only the Chiefs of Staff have authority over." This sort of response has been used frequently in the past decade to cover up corruption and incompetence in the military.