The GRU (pronounced /gruː/) or Glavnoye Razvedyvatel'noye Upravleniye ("Гла́вное Разве́дывательное Управле́ние"), meaning Main Intelligence Directorate, is a Russian military intelligence agency.
First established in 1918 by Vladimir Lenin, GRU was assigned the role of handling military intelligence and was intended to be an agency for the Soviet military. They were granted full independence from other organizations within the Soviet Union, and Lenin specifically told the other groups to not get involved with the activities of the GRU. As a result of both this as well as GRU having been infiltrated during 1919 by the Cheka, the predecessor of the KGB (State Security Committee), a fierce rivalry developed between the GRU and KGB.
Little was known about the very existence of the GRU during the time of the Soviet Union. However, its presence became well known throughout Russia after the collapse of the Soviet bloc and is still currently in existence, along with the Spetsnaz (special forces).
Spetsnaz GRU Edit
The Spetsnaz GRU are a special unit of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, formerly the Soviet Armed Forces, under the control of GRU.
During the Cold War, Colonel Yevgeny Borisovitch Volgin commanded a faction of the Spetsnaz GRU in order to oppose Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev. In August 1964, Volgin ordered his forces to capture nuclear weapons scientist Nikolai Stepanovich Sokolov while the latter was working on the Shagohod prototype, under KGB custody in Tselinoyarsk. The Ocelot Unit were sent to carry out this task, under the command of Major Ocelot. Despite being bested in combat by CIA infiltrator Naked Snake, Volgin, and his recently-acquired ally The Boss, personally arrived in the area to extract Sokolov themselves.
A week later, many GRU soldiers (led by both Colonel Volgin and Major Ivan Raidenovitch Raikov) were stationed as guards in Groznyj Grad, where Sokolov was forced to complete the Shagohod. There, many GRU soldiers encountered and fought Naked Snake. A unit of GRU soldiers were also stationed in Rassvet laying in wait to ambush Naked Snake when he was waiting for ADAM, although they were killed by his "substitute," EVA. During Snake's battle with Major Ocelot at Bolshaya Past, both regular and Ocelot GRU soldiers surrounded Snake to ensure that no one interfered with the duel, though they were later driven off after being swarmed by The Pain's bees, with some of the Ocelots dying from multiple stings. Several of the GRU soldiers stationed at Groznyj Grad were later killed, either from the C3 exploding in the Shagohod hangar, or from Volgin driving the Shagohod through Groznyj Grad. A surviving platoon of GRU soldiers later pursued Naked Snake and EVA throughout Zaozyorje upon discovering the wreckage of EVA's motorcycle, with a sniper contingent also lying in wait for them near the border of Rokovoj Bereg.
Former Spetsnaz GRU colonel Sergei Gurlukovich formed a private military group following the collapse of the Soviet Union, consisting of other disillusioned members. They later participated in terrorist operations during the 2007 Tanker Incident and the 2009 Big Shell Incident. Likewise, two other former Spetsnaz members, Shotmaker and Red Blaster, proceeded to become mercenaries before they ended up joining the mercenary nations of Outer Heaven and Zanzibar Land, respectively.
Notable members Edit
- Yevgeny Borisovitch Volgin (Colonel)
- Ivan Raidenovitch Raikov (Major)
- Ocelot (Major of the Ocelot Unit)
- Johnny (prison guard)
- Sergei Gurlukovich (Colonel)
- Olga Gurlukovich
- Red Blaster
Behind the scenes Edit
In Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, the GRU Spetsnaz wear a uniform resembling the two-piece version of the KLMK camouflage suit: this particular suit didn't exist at the time, as it was issued in the late stages of the Afghan War, and the first KLMK suit, developed in the early '70s and issued to special reconnaissance units, was an overall single-piece suit. However, as the suit does not camouflage the user from night-vision (which the KLMK does), it was likely an unrelated design. As gear, they use the standard leather belt with attached the Makarov holster and a canteen. They use as combat gear the Chicom chest rig, that is coloured black instead of green or khaki. They wear a one-hole balaclava and the short leather trooper's boots
Although both Majors Ocelot and Raikov share the same rank in Metal Gear Solid 3, they wear different insignia. The correct insignia, featuring two lines along the shoulder strap with a single middle size star, is worn by Raikov. The insignia worn by Ocelot, featuring one line along the shoulder strap with three small size stars in a triangle, and a fourth past the top point of the triangle, is that of a Soviet Captain. Similarly, both insignia have the wrong color (like all officer insignia in the game): in the game, officer shoulder straps are a branch color and the straps are gold, like soldiers and sergeant parade shoulder straps; in real life, lines along the shoulder strap (one for junior officers, two for senior officers) are a branch color, and an officer's shoulder strap itself has a uniform color for everyday uniform, which is gold on parade uniforms.
When interrogating GRU soldiers in Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater, they may claim that they are unable to swim, or that they will not show their dog tags if threatened by the enemy; these refer to the player's means of killing them by knocking them into deep water, and to the lack of collectible dog tags in the game, respectively.
According to the voice casting sheet for Metal Gear Solid 3, the GRU soldiers were between the ages of their late twenties to mid thirties.
GRU and Ocelot Unit soldiers serve as playable characters in Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence, Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops, and Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops Plus. The former game also has the player who gains the highest score in a GRU Unit during an operation gaining control of Raikov in a GRU Unit.
- "A member of GRU, the intelligence wing of the Red Army's General Staff. As the military's intelligence service, GRU and the KGB are tasked with keeping a close eye on each other."
- — GRU Soldier description in Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops Plus
In the Naked Sample Demo for Metal Gear Solid: Snake Eater 3D, shortly after a narrow crossing through Dolinovodno, a trio of GRU soldiers, presumably on patrol, are walking around an area above Naked Snake. One of the soldiers decided to smoke a cigarette, but he fumbled the box of cigarettes and it fell down a hole near Snake's position. The guard pops his head out from the hole near the root in order to search for the cigarettes, and then attempts to reach for the cigarettes, completely unaware of Snake's nearby presence. Snake then covertly helps the soldier by retrieving the cigarette box while hiding undearneath his position and holding it in his reach.
If the player interrogates a GRU soldier who lacks any useful info multiple times, the GRU soldier will deny knowing anything, curse Snake and declare that he can kill him as he'll never join the west, although he does eventually consider the freedom he has, and also wonder if it is good in the West.
Notes and referencesEdit
- ^ Several of the soldiers were seen caught in the explosions, as well as four of them moving slowly afterwards before one of them collapsed while alight in flames from the explosion)
- ^ This is revealed if Snake interrogates some of the soldiers. ("A lot of us, we can't swim.")
- ^ This is implied if Snake interrogates some of the soldiers. ("Even threatening... won't show their dog tags" )
- ^ Metal Gear Solid 3 voice casting sheet 
- Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater
- Metal Gear Solid 3: Subsistence
- Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops
- Metal Gear Solid: Portable Ops Plus