Admiral of the Fleet of the Soviet Union Sergey Georgiyevich Gorshkov
() (February 26, 1910 - May 13, 1988) was a Soviet
naval officer during the Cold War
who oversaw the expansion of the Soviet Navy
into a global force.
Born in Kamianets-Podilskyi
, Gorshkov grew up in Kolomna
. Gorshkov joined the Soviet Navy in 1927. He graduated from the M.V. Frunze Higher Naval School in 1931, and gained command of surface boats in the Black Sea
in 1932. During World War II
he distinguished himself in landings on the Kerch
Peninsula and commanded a destroyer squadron at the end of the war. He was appointed commander-in-chief of the Soviet Navy by Nikita Khrushchev
in 1956, and under Leonid Brezhnev
oversaw a massive naval build-up of surface and submarine forces, creating a force capable of challenging Western naval power by the late 1970s.
Gorshkov is often associated with the phrase "'Better' is the enemy of 'Good Enough'," which is reputed to have hung on the wall of his office as a motto. Similar sentiments have been attributed to Clausewitz
. The motto appears in the Tom Clancy
novel, The Hunt For Red October
. The phrase is also attributed to Admiral Gorshkov in Norman Polmar's Guide to the Soviet Navy
(1983, 3rd edition).Polmar, N: Guide to the Soviet Navy
, p. xii (upper left corner), 1983. That is one year prior to Clancy's first published date for "Hunt" by the Naval Institute Press.
Honours, Awards and Decorations