What Kalashnikov plans for the future


Hands up: the inventor of the assault rifle AK-47, the late Mikhail Kalashnikov
Picture: Imago

The weapons manufacturer now also sells T-shirts, drones and medical technology. But so far dominated the business of the legendary assault rifle, whose inventor would have become 100 years old this Sunday.

Michail Kalashnikov, inventor of the AK-47 assault rifle, was a legend during his lifetime. Generations of Soviet children practiced disassembling the weapon, whose inventor was showered with medals and honors until his death in 2013. He had developed the "Automatik Kalashnikov" in 1947, after serving in the Second World War as a tank commander of the Red Army.

Katharina Wagner

Economic correspondent for Russia and the CIS based in Moscow.

For several years, however, Kalashnikov's fame has blossomed again, as he benefits the Kremlin in its attempts to invoke society in a militarized patriotism. In 2017, a statue of the weapons constructor was unveiled in Moscow, and on the occasion of Kalashnikov's 100th birthday this Sunday, the Ministry of Education recommended that teachers introduce the weapon and inventor to the students. Remembrance events are held throughout the year, especially in the central Russian city of Izhevsk, where Kalashnikov's invention is still being built, albeit in a modernized version.

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