The film turned out to be quite good at the level of medium-sized foreign fighters, not a masterpiece, but not a blatant failure, a good-quality film like the viewer went to, especially susceptible people even wept. Bondarchuk film supports a well-defined ideology. For him, the Afghan war is a worthless and senseless war; that is what the director is trying to convey to us in his film. That is why a whole company of paratroopers is dying in the last days of the war, under the onslaught of the brutish dushmans, forgotten and abandoned by all. Only one survived.
You can endlessly scold Bondarchuk for his film, but he is the director. His right to convey to us his position in such a way that he considers necessary, but a position that is not supported by facts looks unconvincing.
There are no right and wrong wars. Perhaps, the last “right” war of this century can only be called the Great Patriotic War, when the life of many peoples of our country directly depended on victory. In the future, all wars pursued much more mundane political or economic goals. So the Afghan war was the last major war waged by the USSR and the last “colonial war” in the world. It is naive to think that she was meaningless. Each war has its own specific goal, the USSR sought to secure its southern borders by establishing control in a region that was always in the sphere of someone’s interests — Britain, pre-revolutionary Russia, and now the United States. And do not think that the war was bloody, and the leadership of our troops is bad. The leadership of the troops was on a level, as was their overall preparation. Over the 9 years of war, the total losses of the army were about 14. 000 people were killed and this is not at all much for a large-scale conflict in the highlands.
In order to substitute the film under his ideology Bondarchuk distorted the whole historyon which the film is based. In the film, an episode of the paratroopers battle with dushmans has nothing to do with reality. The time of year is different (in reality, winter, in the movie, summer); different terrain (in reality - the mountains, in the filme - desert); the battle itself was going on at night, and not during the day. And most importantly, the loss (as a result of the battle, 6 died from 39, only one remained alive in the film). And naturally, in order to achieve the greatest effect, the year of the ongoing battle with 1988 to 1989 was changed, in which the withdrawal of troops began.
In reality, the battle at the height of 3234 took place as part of Operation Highway (from 23.11.1987 to 10.01.1988), the main objective of which was the deblokad of the city of Khost, on the territory of which the Majahidin were going to establish an Islamic state. It was the largest combined-arms operation in Afghanistan from 1979 to 1989. The province had to be liberated because of the inability of the Afghan government to strengthen its local authority. Having transferred the Khost district to the control of the Afghan forces, within six months, the entire territory, except for Khost itself, was in the hands of dushmans. It is worth noting that there are few roads in Afghanistan, so they are all important. Electricity and pipelines are laid along them, food, fuel and equipment are being transported through them. It was along such a road, Gardez-Khost, that the main operations of Operation Highway unfolded. The joint operation of the Soviet and Afghan army ended successfully. Already December 30 on the road, which was cleared of mines and land mines, went to the car with food. Parts of the 40 Army captured more than 100 warehouses weapons 4 tank and 9 armored personnel carriers. The operation of the Dushmans to tear Khost County off from Afghanistan was frustrated.
The battle of the 9 Company with detachments of the Majahedin occurred on January 7 1988. The height of 3234 was an excellent position, which was located close to the highway Gardez-Host. The terrain from it was remarkably visible for tens of kilometers, so it was an ideal platform for observing and adjusting artillery fire. It was at the top of the height that the 9 th company of the 345 th paratrooper regiment was fixed.
The battle began at 16:30 and lasted until 4:00 the next morning. First, the company’s positions were shelled from grenade launchers and recoilless guns. Due to the remoteness of the positions, support for the company was provided by artillery and aviation, but due to the competent use of the terrain, the majahideen were still able to get to the positions of the paratroopers.
The first attack of dushmans fell on a machine-gun nest with a heavy machine gun NSV-12,7 "Rock" Art. Sergeant Alexandrov. Being under heavy fire of the enemy, Alexandrov acted coolly and decisively, with his skillful actions he managed to cover his comrades' retreat to another position. He fired until the machine gun was jammed, after that he continued the battle, let the enemy go closer and successfully threw 5 grenades, he himself also died from a grenade rupture. For this fight, he was awarded the title Hero of the Soviet Union posthumously.
Then the events developed incrementally: the militants, possessing a tenfold superiority in numbers, were able to conduct 12 attacks from various directions, one of the attacks ran into a minefield. Soon machine gunner Andrei Tsvetkov dies, the remaining third machine gunner Andrei Melnikov constantly changed position, running from one line to another, kept to the end (he was awarded the title Hero of the Soviet Union posthumously). In some areas of defense, dushmans managed to approach the positions of the company on 50 meters, at some points only on 10 meters. Under these conditions, the artillery spotter Art. Lt. Ivan Babenko, who actually caused the fire on himself. Scattering shells at such a distance was the very 50 meters. Largely thanks to him, the Majahideen never took the height. The battle did not subside until 4 hours of the morning, and all this time Soviet artillery poured missiles at the heads of the attackers. At the most critical moment of the battle, the reconnaissance platoon approached, immediately joined the battle and finally decided it in favor of the paratroopers. By the time the reinforcements approached, 5 people from the company remained in the ranks, 6 people died, 28 were injured of varying degrees of severity. For this fight, all the paratroopers of the company were awarded the Orders of the Red Star and the Battle Red Banner.