MOSCOW (AP) — A Russian official says it's time for the nation's soldiers to switch from foot wraps to socks.
Since the late 17th century, Russian soldiers have been using wraps, rectangular strips of cloth that are carefully wrapped around their bare feet to prevent blisters from tall heavy boots with no laces.
But Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu, who took the post two months ago, said he was surprised to learn that some soldiers are still using the wraps, called "portyanki" in Russian, and told them to use socks instead.
At a televised meeting with military officers Monday, he said, "In 2013, or at least by the end of 2013, we must forget the word portyanki."
Czar Peter the Great adopted the custom from the Dutch army in the late 17th century.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
To comment, the following rules must be followed:
If you believe a comment violates the above rules, please use the Flagging Tool to alert a Moderator.
Flagging does not guarantee removal.
Decisions to suspend or unsuspend accounts are made by Station Moderators.
Links require admin approval before posting.
Questions may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please provide detailed information.
Viewers with disabilities can get assistance accessing this station's FCC Public Inspection File by contacting the station with the information listed below. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, 888-835-5322 (TTY), or email@example.com.