Without any slogans on certain death

Without any slogans on certain death
A new story about the feat of "The Immortal Garrison"

At the end of last September, on NTV at the very prime time (on 19.30), more than an hour-long documentary-publicistic film by Alexey Pivovarov “Brest. Serf heroes. The demonstration was preceded by a lengthy announcement of the picture: during the week, viewers sought to convince that it was made “in the genre of documentary drama and without a mythology hiding the truth.”

Pivovarov himself, giving on the eve of the premiere of interviews to a number of newspapers, explained the scandalous name of his new work: “I realized that these people fell into millstones between two inhuman systems absolutely indifferent to everything human, to the fate and suffering of people. History the survivors are a few days of defense of the fortress, and then many years in captivity and many years in the Soviet camp. Or life in obscurity and poverty with the stigma of a man who was in captivity, which means with the stigma of a traitor. All that remained for them was to die heroes, which almost all the defenders of the Brest Fortress did. ”


However, the author of the film still did not adhere to this fashionable to this day in some layers of Russian society the “concept”, according to which it is absolutely necessary to question the greatness of the feat of those who 1941 in June and fought a cruel, skillful, well-armed enemy to death . For the brave ones who died by death on the battlefields, they say, had no choice: either death on the front line, or execution in the rear.

I have often been to the Brest Fortress, I read a lot of literature about its unparalleled defense and therefore I can absolutely responsibly say that the creator of the documentary drama did not leave the historical truth and did not distort the repeatedly confirmed facts, as is done by his other colleagues in the television workshop. Moreover, a series of episodes of the Brest epic of the Brewers highlighted from completely unexpected angles.

Here, for example, is the story of the first massive shelling of the citadel. At the same time, the memories of the chaplain Rudolf Gshepf from the 45 division of the Wehrmacht storming Brest are heard: “Above our heads a hurricane swept as much as we had not experienced before or throughout the war. Above the fortress, black fountains of smoke grew like mushrooms. We were sure that everything there was turned to ashes. ” And after that, the author of the film, using a music synthesizer, reproduces what Soviet fighters could hear, and commented: “The power of the blow is truly amazing - 4 is thousands of gaps per minute, 66 - per second ... It is estimated that the human brain is able to perceive rhythm no faster than 20 beats per second. If the rhythm is higher, the sound merges into one continuous tone. This is exactly what happens in the Brest Fortress, only the volume of this sound is such that it can cloud the mind and stun it forever. And this is only the most harmless sound effect. ”

It is impossible not to marvel at the depth and accuracy of the following Alexey Pivovarov’s inference: “The path of bitterness and hatred towards the enemy, which the country will pass in a year, the defenders — time is so compressed here — pass in two days. And the call "Kill the German!" Thrown by Ehrenburg in 1942 in the fortress is being carried out now. "

These words are supported by the testimony of Sergeant 9 of the frontier post Nikolai Morozov about the changing attitude of the defenders of Brest fortifications to the captured German soldiers on the second or third day of the war (the first Germans were captured by the Red Army on June 22). “They took the prisoners to a narrow pantry and wanted to shoot them,” recalled Morozov. - But some foreman, so broad-shouldered, forbade us. And he ordered not to allow anyone to the Germans before his arrival. Ten minutes later, this foreman comes with three-hilts forks and says: “This is what you need to shoot them. And the cartridges will still come in handy. ” He opened the door and began to pitchfork one by one into their fat belly. ”

Brewers supplements the border guard: “And this is not a special case. Prisoners taken in the canteen are also being killed: they simply have nowhere to go, you will not let go of the war ... "


At the same time, the NTV company, announcing the “Brest serfs”, seduced potential viewers: the authors thoroughly - for many months - studied the archives, talked with eyewitnesses and did without propaganda myths about mass heroism, friendship of nations and the leading role of the party. And tell about what happened in the fortress in fact. Anyone who clings to the screens, seduced channel, will see a lot of unique. Moreover, members of military-historical societies and clubs took part in the reconstruction of events against the background of very authentic decorations (they were made and mounted in one of the huge pavilions of Mosfilm). Plus, the original computer graphics, "stopping time in the frame" and other modern television wonders.

However, Pivovarov did not present any of his “discoveries”. He used the same archival chronicle, which previously could be seen in Nikolai Yakovlev’s documentary “The Mystery of the Brest Fortress. In the lists ... means "(2003 year) and television forty-minute" Brest Fortress ", filmed by the broadcasting organization (SRW) of the Union State (2007 year, producer and presenter - Igor Ugolnikov). And the testimonies of the participants in those events from the Soviet and German sides were taken from the same sources. In particular, from the detailed combat report of the commander of the 45 th division of the Wehrmacht, Lieutenant General Fritz Schlieper, dated July 8 1941 year.

The difference between Pivovarov’s film and the mentioned paintings is that it reported tragic upheavals in the fate of a number of miraculously survived defenders of Brest. Many of them who had been in Hitler's captivity and returned to their homeland after the Victory were “interrogated” with predilection, convicted and sent to the disposal of the GULAG. Some, as the head of the Brest hospital, 2-rank medical officer Boris Maslov, did not survive there.

But this is not a "sensation." The country learned about all the terrible changes in the life of “Brest serfs” in the middle of 50 from writer Sergey Smirnov (his book “Brest Fortress” was repeatedly republished in Soviet times), which, in fact, dispelled the shroud of oblivion over them. It was he who told how 30 June 1941 was shot by regimental commissar Efim Fomin. And that Major Peter Gavrilov, freed from German captivity, was reinstated in rank and sent to the Far East, where he was appointed head of the camp for Japanese prisoners of war, but not for long - three years later he was fired with a meager pension. And that the deputy political officer and Komsomol sergeant Samvel Matevosyan was considered killed. A pupil of a musician platoon Petya Klypu (Gavroshem of the Brest Fortress called him Smirnov) in 1949 was sentenced to 25 years of imprisonment for non-informing ...

To the honor of Alexey Pivovarov, he refers to Smirnov and gives him his due. It is strange, however, that having acquainted the audience with the sad details of the biographies of the above-mentioned and some other people, Brewers for some reason did not tell about the equally amazingly dramatic fate of Samvel Matevosyan. No, the film did not pass over in silence that, by order of Fomin, he led the fighters in the first hand-to-hand combat with the enemy, and then tried to jump out of the citadel on the armored car in order to scout the situation around it, that the former Komsomol 84 Infantry Regiment was the first defender of Brest who Smirnov found.

At the same time, the following remained unknown to the audience. Geological engineer Matevosyan in 1971 year for outstanding achievements in the development of nonferrous metallurgy was awarded the title Hero of Socialist Labor. And in 1975-m on trumped-up charges he was convicted and deprived of this award. As a result, 130 thousands of copies of the reprinted book Smirnova went under the knife. Only in 1987, the criminal case was discontinued due to the absence of corpus delicti. In the 1990 year, Matevosyan was reinstated for the second time in the game he entered 1940 in. The title of Hero was returned to him only in 1996, five years after the collapse of the USSR, by decree of the President of the Russian Federation. By that time, Matevosyan moved to Russia for permanent residence. He died on January 15 2003 on the 91-th year of life.


The name of Lieutenant Andrei Kizhevatov, who also headed one of the centers of resistance in the citadel and died, is generally mentioned in the film in passing, once. But the so-called Westerners (drafted into the Red Army to the natives of Western Belorussia), whom Commissioner Fomin seems to have feared more than the Germans, are already given eight minutes. Out of fear of them, the political worker allegedly changed into the uniform of a Red Army man, and even had his hair cut clean, under an ordinary soldier, and ordered his uniforms to be worn by Matevosyan.

єPravda, Sergey Smirnov writes: Fomin’s simple fighter’s tunic had to be put on because Hitler’s snipers and saboteurs, who were hunting primarily for our commanders, began to attack the fortress, and the entire command staff was ordered to change. But is it interesting ...

Meanwhile, the Red Army 81 Infantry Regiment George Leurd, in the voice of an actor Serebryakov, said: “They, these Westerners, have changed our Motherland. We fought double battles. And with the Germans, and with them. They shot us in the head. " The Red Army 455 Infantry Regiment Ivan Hvatalin: “The Westerners rose and, with a white rag tied to a stick, ran to the Germans with raised arms. And about something zagaldeli and in full growth headed in our direction. Thought all surrender. When approaching a group of defectors on our side, strong fire was opened. ”

From what sources it is taken, we can only guess. However, it is more than obvious that not the traitors were the main characters in the fortress desperately resisting from the first minutes of aggression. That is why Alexey Pivovarov reflects: “In Soviet times such a question would have been impossible, but we, living in a different era and knowing what we know, should ask: why didn’t they give up? Still hoping to fit yours? Or, as the Germans explained, they were afraid that they would shoot everyone in captivity? Or did they want to avenge their dead friends and relatives? ” And he answers: “All this is probably part of the answer. But, of course, there was something else. Something utterly worn out by propaganda, but in fact deeply personal - that without any slogans makes a person stand up and go to certain death. ”

By the way, Pivovarov's thoughts clearly echo the question asked as early as 2003 in the film “The Secret of the Brest Fortress”: “It is important for us to understand: what made the fighters of the Brest garrison to resist in a deliberately doomed situation? Who are the defenders of the Brest Fortress - the defenders of ideology ... or the first soldiers of the future Great Victory? "

The answer is obvious, he - in the end of this quote. In fact, the viewer and the film by Alexey Pivovarov, in spite of the aforementioned flaws and some “new readings”, lead the same conclusion.

Brest. Serf heroes

Documentary drama by Alexey Pivovarov

How did it happen that in June of the 41st, despite numerous evidence of an impending attack, the fortress garrison was not in combat readiness, and the authorities from Moscow repeated only "not to succumb to provocations"? Why did the defenders of the Brest Fortress fear the local population almost more than the advancing Germans? As a handful of soldiers without ammunition, food, water, and no connection with the command continued to so fiercely resist the German military machine - artillery, tanks, aviation and attack aircraft of the elite Austrian division? Why didn’t they give up? Still hoping yours would fit? Or, as the Germans explained, believed that they would be shot in captivity? Or wanted to avenge the deceased relatives and friends? All this is part of the answer, but there was something else. Worn down by propaganda, but really deeply personal. What makes you die, but not give up.

With the help of special computer effects and modern film technologies, the new documentary drama by Alexey Pivovarov meticulously recreates the episode of defense of the Fortress, which is complemented by documentary evidence of the direct participants in the events. The author has found an unusual directorial move: Alexey Serebryakov lives in the frame of the Red Army men, and the women of the Fortress, who displayed no less heroism, come to life in Ekaterina Guseva's monologues. Diaries and reports of soldiers and officers of Germany reads German actor Markus Kunze. And to create greater certainty - Konstantin Smirnov as his own father, Sergey Smirnov. His long-term search did not allow the feat of "serf heroes" to disappear from stories and it was thanks to him that the Brest Fortress was rightfully given the only honorary title of its kind - the Hero-Fortress.

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