32 academician, corresponding member and professor of the Russian Academy of Sciences accused the director of the FSB Alexander Bortnikov in an attempt to justify the repression of 30's. “The appeal of a group of Academicians and Corresponding Members of the Russian Academy of Sciences” can only be described as spitting in history of our country, in those who created the power of our Soviet science, the achievements of which our country lives up to now, who created the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, and therefore its successor, the Russian Academy of Sciences.
December 22 appeared in the media “Appeal from a group of academicians and corresponding members of the RAS” or, as they themselves defined it, “comment to the interview with the director of the FSB A. V. Bortnikov”. The content comes down to a decisive protest "against the revision of the ideas about the inhuman and anti-people nature of repression." The authors and signatories call "all sensible people who do not want their children to survive the horrors of 30's, to join."
The appeal states that “for the first time after the XX Congress of the CPSU (1956 year), one of the highest officials of our state justifies the mass repressions of 30 – 40-ies, accompanied by unjust sentences, torture and executions of hundreds of thousands of innocent people.” It sounds wary. However, before we raise our voices in support of academics and associate professors who share their position with candidates, let us read the said interview.
Walking over corpses
The first thing that attracts attention is the question of the journalist “The attitude of society to the domestic special services is very ambiguous and has changed several times depending on the political situation. What does the FSB base on when evaluating the activities of its predecessors? ” Surely this is where the justification of the mass repressions of the 30 – 40-s takes place. Answering the question, the director of the FSB first of all notes: “Historical conditions should be taken into account. Our Fatherland has repeatedly become the object of hostile encroachments by foreign powers. The enemy tried to defeat us either in open battle, or relying on the traitors within the country, with their help, to sow discord, to disunite the people, to paralyze the ability of the state to respond promptly and effectively to emerging threats. The destruction of Russia for some is still an obsession. We, as security agencies, are obliged to promptly identify the enemy’s plans, preempt his actions and respond adequately to any attacks. In this sense, the most important criterion for evaluating our activity is its effectiveness. ” Is it not true? The USSR was destroyed precisely by “traitors within the country”, who ruined our Great Homeland, “by sowing distemper, disuniting the nations, paralyzing the ability of the state to respond promptly and effectively to emerging threats.” Recall 80 – 90. The consequences are so terrible that the tragedy of 30's fades against their background. Let us recall the wars in the post-Soviet space that were unleashed by all sorts of “fighters for the freedom of thought, word and deed”, in particular, by the “great” director Gamsakhurdia. How much blood is in the hands of the false Islamic "preachers" who were finally called their worthy name - the terrorists. How many lives were taken away by the "peacemaker" Shevardnadze and his heir Saakashvili. Maybe it was worth all these "fighters" to neutralize in a timely manner? And the Union would be preserved, hundreds of thousands of citizens would not be the victims of violent internal conflicts on the territory of our country (USSR). A simple question: what is more expensive - a few thousand high-handed villains, or millions of honest people, toilers? The answer is obvious. But for a normal person, and for those obsessed with ideas of their own exclusiveness, ready to go over the corpses for the sake of career, power and wealth, the answer will be different. It is worth recalling that the “fifth column” is not demonstrators with placards, but high-ranking officials and major businessmen. Only they have the authority and the ability to seriously influence the situation in the country, the actions of state structures, including the armed forces. Quisling, who paralyzed the possibility of organized resistance to Hitler’s invasion, before becoming a symbol of betrayal, was the Prime Minister of Norway.
So Bortnikov did not say anything special. The exact and honest answer, today actual, more than ever. And then the general stresses: “The priorities that are solved by the security agencies change depending on the nature of the challenges and threats that the state faces at different stages. That is, for example, the tasks of the Cheka were significantly different from the tasks of the KGB and even more so the FSB. This led to the logic of structural transformations of the special services, and methods of conducting operational work. ” That is, a clear demarcation line is drawn between the FSB and its predecessors. The Federal Security Service is not a “duplicate” of the NKVD or the Cheka in modern Russia.
Work on the denunciation
The final part of the answer to the question is very important: “Security officers cannot be considered in isolation from society, with all its pluses and minuses. Society is changing, and we are changing. ” It is appropriate to quote the appeal again: “Repressions also affected the scientific community, thousands of scientists and engineers were shot or died in the camps, which caused irreparable harm to Russian science and technology. Let us recall academician N. I. Vavilov, professor L. V. Shubnikov, professor S. P. Shubin, and many others. L. D. Landau, S. P. Korolev, V. P. Glushko survived by a miracle ... As a rule, these names are known to the general public. Unfortunately, few, except specialists, represent what a great number of remarkable scientists who advanced science in various fields were destroyed in the prime of their work. This is the brilliant theoretical physicist M. P. Bronstein, academician, geologist I. F. Grigoriev, accused of sabotage when searching for uranium deposits, Professor D. F. Egorov, a mathematician, one of the founders of modern functional analysis, died in prison. The heat engineering professor LK Ramzin, who invented the direct-flow boiler, the linguist E. D. Polivanov, the agronomist N. M. Tulaikov, the geneticist I. I. Agol, the philosopher G. G. Shpet, the designer of rockets G. E. Langemak. The leaders of the Pulkovo Observatory were repressed. The list is huge.
Losses are really great. But what are the reasons for the persecution? Not from the same finger they were sucked by the NKVD investigators. Most security officers did not know such names. Cases arose as a result of denunciations. And only sufficiently qualified people could write them - you need to have good training for a competent accusation of sabotage. That is, denunciations scribbled by the representatives of the scientific (engineering) world. Employees of the NKVD (Cheka, OGPU) - people who do not have sufficient qualifications in the subject area, which was to expose the enemy of the people, attracted to the expertise of figures from the desired field of knowledge, who gave opinions on the charges. So the blame for the illegal repression of scientists and engineers lies not only on the NKVD, but also on the colleagues of the victims. Some are not very clean experts settled scores with others. The same thing happened in artistic circles.
Someone would argue: the NKVD officers were obliged to investigate and identify false denunciations, not allowing repression against the innocent. This is true. However, tell me, citizens are converters: you have no mistakes in scientific research, do you always immediately find the truth? Remind how, until now, trying to throw mud at the same Einstein? How hard your opponents deal with opponents with hardware methods that have nothing to do with an honest dispute. Maybe you used such tricks? There are more than enough examples. Take, for example, the cases of poor official dissertations of high-ranking officials that have thundered in the media. However, unlike you, gentlemen scientists, General Bortnikov recognizes the problem: “Certainly, among the security officers, who, I repeat, were flesh of the flesh of the society at that time, there were very different people. This and, unfortunately, the opportunists, holding on to the principle “the end justifies the means.”
The NKVD employees, being an integral part of society, carried all its advantages and disadvantages: heroism and readiness for self-sacrifice, as well as radicalism inherent in that era, a tendency to quick, often emotional decisions, because Civil had just died down, and before that there was world, February and Great October revolutions, Russian-Japanese, 1907 uprisings, silent peasant war against landowners (this is how one can qualify continuous local revolts against feudal land tenure, gave attacks on manor successive cancellation of risings and executions guilty - "stolypin ties"). Indeed, from the beginning of the twentieth century to the end of 20, there was a continuous bloody struggle, in which a certain psycho-type of personality was formed, prone to quick, sometimes insufficiently substantiated decisions, based on personal ideas and even sensations. Look at the modern veterans who have gone through wars and armed conflicts of our time - from Afghanistan and Chechnya to Syria. These people, who have truly known what life and death are, are psychologically different from the rest. Many of them need rehabilitation. And then it was the norm.
Another point emphasized by General Bortnikov should also be taken into account: “Let us turn to the realities of those years. The Versailles world was regarded by the victor countries only as a temporary respite. Plans for an attack on the USSR were developed by them since the 20s. The threat of an impending war demanded from the Soviet state the concentration of all resources and the utmost exertion of forces, the speediest industrialization and collectivization. But society has not yet recovered after the civil war and devastation. Mobilization was very painful. ” Against this background, “within the OGPU, a conflict arose between chairman G. Yagoda and his deputy, S. Messing, who spoke in 1931, together with a group of like-minded people, against mass arrests. The bodies began to “purge”, which intensified even more after the assassination of S. Kirov in December 1934 of the year. At the slightest suspicion of unreliability, qualified employees were transferred to the periphery, dismissed or arrested. Their place was taken by people with no operational and investigative experience, but ready for a career to fulfill any instructions. This is partly due to the excesses in the work of the OGPU-NKVD in the field. In total, 1933 1939 security officers, including the first Soviet counterintelligence officers A. Artuzov, K. Zvonarev and others, were repressed in 22 – 618. Only in the period of the so-called Yezhovshchina, the personnel of the counterintelligence department of the General Directorate of State Security (GUGB) of the NKVD were updated three times. In March, the 1938 of the GUGB was completely eliminated. ”
The Cheka, since its inception, could not count on highly qualified personnel - it was not from where to take it. And after the cleansing it became even worse - people who had accumulated at least some experience got under repression. Therefore, the proceedings were conducted by inexperienced staff with corresponding flaws. I am not going to whitewash the unscrupulous security officers who filled the NKVD in the years of Yezhovshchina. But it was also unjust to blame everything on them - I repeat, this was society, including the scientific world.
No one blames the current RAS for the fact that it cannot present the country with scientific achievements on a par with the USSR Academy of Sciences. Everyone understands what human losses science suffered during the years of the restoration of capitalism in our country. Meanwhile, it should be noted that academic circles must recognize a part of the responsibility for the counter-revolution and its monstrous consequences.
Who were the ideologists of the “market reforms”, that is, the restoration of capitalism? Reputable scientists from the Department of Economics of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR. Today, some of them are trying to distance themselves from the results of the social experiment that they have set on our country. They say they wanted a "different market". Scientists need to know that the market, that is, capitalism, is not “different”. So your recommendations, citizens, economists, even if based on good intentions, have caused tremendous harm to all the peoples of the USSR. Is it that created with the country in 90-e, including through the efforts of representatives of academic science, not repression? Isn't it time to answer for them?
You write: “Millions of Soviet people were in prisons and camps, many of them did not return. Entire nations were resettled from their historical places. ” It's true. General Bortnikov clarifies: “Even at the end of 80, the certificate of the USSR Ministry of Internal Affairs from 1954 on the number of convicted for counterrevolutionary and other especially dangerous state crimes, including banditry and military espionage, was declassified in 1921 – 1953 years - 4 060 306 people . Of these, 642 980 was sentenced to capital punishment, 765 180 was sentenced to exile and deportation. This is indicated by archival materials. ”
And now let's see what the followers of "scientifically based" recommendations on the restoration of capitalism have done with our country. We turn to the official data. From 1992 to the present, the indigenous population of Russia is shrinking from 800 – 945 thousand to 130 – 200 thousand people per year (positive demographic indicators of recent years have been achieved through migration from neighboring countries of Central Asia - the former Soviet republics). The peak of depopulation occurred in the period from 1994 to 2006, when the number of our fellow citizens decreased with the rate of 700 – 900 by thousands of people. The overall scale of net demographic losses exceeds 10 millions. The reason is a sharp reduction in the birth rate and an increase in mortality. The number of infants per thousand people has decreased from 17 – 18 in recent years of the previous government to 7 – 9 in the post-Soviet 15 anniversary. At the same time, the mortality rate has sharply increased. There were 10 – 12 people per thousand, it became 16 – 17. To this we must add the monstrous collapse of industrial production, accompanied by the loss of many critical technologies that we cannot recover today. The economic and technological ruin of Russia by the reforms turned out to be heavier than the Nazi invasion.
Meanwhile, in the "terrible" 30-th Russia's population has grown from 93 million people to 112 million. That is, an average increase in 1,9 million people per year. Today’s capitalist Russia does not even dream of such figures. And this, by the way, is the main indicator of the well-being of the population: if it multiplies, then life as a whole is perceived as comfortable.
Once again: those economists, political and public figures, journalists, who persistently promoted "market ideas", are responsible for the consequences of their implementation. Therefore, as a citizen of the USSR, I can blame the NKVD, the KGB, the FSB for only one thing - an ineffective struggle against such reformers and false scientists. Although this is not entirely reasonable, after all, as General Bortnikov recalled in an interview: “The team of reformers that came to power, headed by M. Gorbachev, despite the proclamation of perestroika, openness and publicity, retained the ban on the operational development of representatives of the party elite. The Central Committee of the CPSU did not even react to the information of counterintelligence about the acquisition by foreign special services of “agents of influence” in the allied authorities ”.
We can not ignore another position of appeal: "Before the war, the army was defeated." It is ridiculous: the “crushed” Red Army alone reflected the first, most terrible blow of United Europe led by the Third Reich, disrupting the Barbarossa plan at the very beginning, and completely combatant and well-trained French army, acting together with the English expeditionary force, surrendered Wehrmacht two weeks after the attack of one of Germany back in 1940.
Still, something needs to be clarified. First, there was an anti-Soviet conspiracy, and the rehabilitation commission, which worked at the beginning of 90, does not deny this. Secondly, the number of repressed. The share of the “cleaned out” top commanders was really great - up to 65 percent. However, with respect to the rest of the figures are different. In Volkogonov - 36 761 with the proviso: "Some of them were, however, only dismissed from the Red Army." As the analysis of archival documents shows, the majority of army officials were expelled from the Armed Forces for reasons not related to trustworthiness, but for drunkenness, non-performance of official duties, other misconduct. For political reasons, people were arrested from 1937 to 1939, the 8122 year of a man, and about 10 thousands more were fired. Meanwhile, by 15 June 1941, the number of command and commanding personnel of the USSR Armed Forces was 439 143 man. That is, about five percent (slightly over two percent arrested) of officers were subjected to repressions and dismissal for political reasons. Even if we take Volkogonov’s dubious figure, it turns out that the percentage of repressed and dismissed people is less than nine percent.
Why are the huge losses of our army in the first months of the war? The answer lies in the analysis of the composition of military equipment. Number tanks in our Armed Forces from 1932 to 1940 increased by almost an order of magnitude. The same dynamics in combat aviation. Where to recruit so many commanders in an incredibly short time - in eight years? These years should have included - for the middle-level command staff - at least the time of training at a military school and academy. This is already six years old. I do not even mention the Academy of the General Staff with its two years of training. When was it to serve and gain experience? This is the main reason for the lack of competent commanding staff of regimental-corps units. Training did not keep up with the pace of building up arsenals. Academics and corresponding members should also know such simple things.
And yet, why does our elite dislike the Stalin era so much? The answer can be found in General Bortnikov: “A large number of the defendants in those cases are representatives of the party nomenclature and the leadership of the law enforcement agencies, steeped in corruption, repulsive outrage and lynching.” That is, the blow of the NKVD largely fell on the presumptuous elite. Ivan the Terrible is still hated for the same thing.
In conclusion, let me remind you that the science of our country reached its highest peak during the Soviet period. The USSR Academy of Sciences, the largest organization of its kind, which made a tremendous contribution to world progress, was created precisely in the 30s under Stalin. And the contribution of the same NKVD to the formation of the USSR Academy of Sciences is very large. Suffice it to recall Arzamas-16. It was created under the personal guidance of Beria. Lavrenty Pavlovich is still commemorated there with a kind word - I personally heard when I came to this research center at the end of 90's. With the beginning of the “reforms” of the RAS (which the USSR Academy of Sciences turned into, having lost a significant part of its potential in the republican branches, which turned into sovereign academies of the separated republics), a series of blows was inflicted, the last of which deprived it of the authority to manage its material resources them in phano, seriously undermined its potential. Modern RAS - a pitiful shadow of the great Academy of Sciences of the USSR. She suffered as much from capitalist restoration as the other key organizations in our country. Today, the preservation and revival of the RAS is a national task. Therefore, I certainly support the open letter of 397 scientists to the President of Russia with a request to cancel the last reform of the RAS, the most important part of which was the creation of FANO.
Against this background, the Appeal of a group of Academicians and Corresponding Members of the Russian Academy of Sciences can only be described as spitting in the history of our country, in those who created the might of Soviet science, whose achievements we live in until now, who built the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, and therefore its successor RAS. It is gratifying to know that the signatories of the appeal are all 32. This is an insignificant part of the academy.