The famous “lips” were feared by many military personnel. And many had a chance to visit her. More than three hundred years totals история guardhouse of the Russian army - special guard rooms where guilty military personnel can be detained.
From tsarist to Soviet: how the guardhouse in Russia developed
Translated from German Hauptwache - "main guard." As the name implies, the first guardhouses appeared in Central and Western Europe, in the German kingdoms and principalities. These were the premises of the city guard, which sometimes could contain temporarily arrested persons for subsequent escort.
The first guardhouse appeared in Russia in 1707 at the initiative of Peter I. The first guardhouse was built on Sennaya Square in St. Petersburg. By tradition, in other cities, guardhouses began to be placed on the main squares. It was in Russia that under the guardhouse they began to understand a special type of punishment for military personnel, which slightly changed the initial content of this military term. After all, let's say, in most other countries of the world, the notion of a “military prison” is an analog of a guardhouse.
In pre-revolutionary Russia for corporal punishment and negligent service, they were subjected to corporal punishment. Therefore, only an officer could “close” the guardhouse. Everything changed after the abolition of corporal punishment: the soldiers had to somehow be held accountable for misconduct and they too began to be put under arrest in a guardhouse.
The history of guardhouses in Russian cities is full of sad events. Yet these are essentially prisons, and prisons are always tragedies, small or large. For example, in Vyborg, as a result of a speech by Lavr Kornilov, General O. A. Oranovsky, Major General V. N. Vasiliev, Major General F. V. Stepanov and Lieutenant Colonel Kurenius were arrested and imprisoned at the Vyborg guardhouse by the Council. On August 29, 1917 they were killed by revolutionary soldiers, and the bodies were thrown from the bridge into the bay.
Guardhouse of the Vyborg fortress (cafe "on the lip")
In Soviet times, custody at a guardhouse became the main way to punish guilty military personnel of any rank. Of course, most often the clients of the “lips” (as the Russian military Russified the “guardhouse” to simplify the term) were privates and sergeants, but there were exceptions when “whole colonels” came to the guardhouse. Often, not so much for the purpose of real punishment for a committed act, but for "educational" purposes. But there were different cases. Sometimes one did not interfere with the other.
In fact, the Soviet guardhouse has become an analogue of foreign military prisons. There was no concept of a “military prison” in the USSR and in Russia: the military, who committed offenses and crimes, could either be arrested and detained at a guardhouse, or sent to a disciplinary battalion (privates and sergeants), or dismissed from military service after a court sentence and send to the usual “civilian” correctional institution.
How the guardhouse has changed in modern Russia and why
Until 2002, the company commander could be placed on guardhouse for a serious disciplinary offense for up to 3 days. For 10 days, superior officers could be placed on guardhouse. In 2002, military personnel began to be placed in guardhouses, in relation to which investigative actions were carried out.
Throughout the nineties of the twentieth century, the very fact of the guardhouse was a “red rag” for Russian human rights activists: they repeatedly demanded the abolition of this type of disciplinary punishment, citing international law. Ultimately, Russia, having acceded to the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, was forced to reconsider its attitude towards guardhouses.
This was done in 2002, already under President Vladimir Putin. By the decree of the head of state dated June 30, 2002, “On Amending the General Military Statutes of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation,” the right of the commander to seize a soldier was excluded from the disciplinary charter. In July 2002, the guardhouse was canceled, and all references to it were excluded from the charters.
Military police. It is her military personnel who perform the tasks of guarding watchhouses
However, like many other ill-conceived decisions, the abolition of the guardhouse did not have the best effect on the state of order in the units and divisions of the Russian army and fleet. As a result, already in 2006, the same Putin allowed military courts to apply disciplinary arrest in relation to military personnel. However, the rules for placement under disciplinary arrest have changed: now only a military tribunal can make a decision on placing a serviceman in a guardhouse; the commander does not have this right.
The grounds for the admission of military personnel to the guardhouse and their maintenance there are drawn up in the manner prescribed by the legislation of the Russian Federation: a copy of the decision of the judge of the garrison military court on disciplinary arrest (court decision on the execution of the sentence) - for military personnel subjected to disciplinary arrest (sentenced to arrest); copy of the sentence - for convicts by a military court; a copy of the court decision on detention, a copy of the protocol of detention or the protocol on the application of measures to ensure the production of materials on disciplinary misconduct - for detained military personnel,
- reads the annex to the Charter of the military police of the Russian Federation.
History has shown that an army can exist without a guardhouse, but discipline, as they say, often needs to be adjusted. There will always be soldiers who violate discipline, commit disciplinary offenses, crimes. What to do with a soldier who voluntarily left the unit and came intoxicated? Or cursing the commander with abusive words? You cannot bring him to criminal liability with a real term of imprisonment, and there is no reason to. But “cooling” the ardor and coming to his senses often helped, however, she also had a flip side - there were cases of settling accounts with “disloyal” commanders.