an army in which the military units in peace-time consist only of administrative personnel and a few commanding officers; the entire temporary rank and file and part of the command staff are attached to military units stationed in the region of their residence, and their military service consists of brief refresher training periods.
The prototypes of the militia army were the people’s militias in the period of the disintegration of the primitive communal system and the slaveholders’ militias in the early period of ancient Greece (until the middle of of the fifth century B.C.) and ancient Rome (until the late second century B.C.), which were called up only in wartime and for training. The same elements of the militia army can be found in the medieval city militias in Europe and in the bourgeois national guards of the 19th century in France (from 1789 to August 1871), Belgium, the Netherlands, Spain, and the USA (until the early 20th century). At the present time only Switzerland has a militia army.
In the 1920’s and 1930’s, in addition to regular army units, the USSR had territorial troops, which were formed on the territorial-militia principle of recruitment. Between 1935 and 1938 the armed forces went completely over to the regular army system.