In those years, our Far Eastern districts were restless, and Lieutenant Shkadov, as a first-grade graduate who had the right to choose a place for further service, expressed a desire to go to the most difficult at that time Far Eastern region. He was appointed commander of a tank platoon of the 2 th mechanized brigade of a separate Red Banner Army. During classes in the field, at the tankodrome, tankmen taught what is called combat arithmetic - competently overcome mine barriers, shoot straight, skillfully use the terrain in battle. This came in handy at the end of July 1938, when a part was sent to the area of Lake Hassan. Not once Lt. Shkadov led his subordinates into battle. After the death of the company commander assumed command. The Order of the Red Star, which was handed to him in the Kremlin, became a worthy assessment of the commanding qualities of Ivan Nikolaevich, who managed to withstand the first serious test of combat maturity.
On June 22, 1941, Senior Lieutenant Shkadov met in the Far East the chief of staff of the tank battalion of the 58th tank divisions. Soon he received an order to prepare for his redeployment to the west. In the second half of August, as part of the Bryansk Front, Ivan Nikolaevich joined the battle with the enemy. After the death of the commander, and then the chief of staff, he served as regiment commander for three days. When defending the capital, he led the company of heavy tanks KB, beat the fascists not with numbers, but with skill, for which he was awarded the Order of Lenin.
The commanding qualities of Shkadov were polished from battlefield to battlefield, from operation to operation. They were especially prominent at Stalingrad. In the difficult days of November 1942, Ivan Nikolaevich became the commander of the 52-th separate tank regiment. Under his leadership, the regiment participated in battles on the Manych Canal, fought for Kotelnikovo and Novocherkassk, crossed the Mius River, and took part in the liberation of Dneprodzerzhinsk. At that time the breast of Lieutenant Colonel Shkadova adorned the commander order of Suvorov.
Already in Bulgaria, in the rank of lieutenant colonel, Ivan Shkadov took command of the 96-th Shumen tank named after the Chelyabinsk Komsomol brigade. Here he met his future wife, senior lieutenant of the medical service, Maria Petrovna Tagunova (1920 – 2012). In the Chelyabinsk school, where the brigade was formed, now a bust was set in memory of the valiant brigade.
Ivan Nikolaevich fought on the Bryansk, Western, Stalingrad, Steppe and 3-m Ukrainian fronts. He was wounded twice, burned more than once in a tank. He fought in the eight armies. Surviving in a bloody military meat grinder was a happy event. Moreover, such people as Ivan Nikolayevich were not substituted for bullets, but did not hide from them either. Captivity, they preferred death.
"The most important quality I.N. Shkadova as a regiment commander was demanding of herself and her subordinates, ”Sopilnik, a colleague, recalled. “I would also like to say about my commander that there was something from the legendary Chapaev in his behavior, character, and actions,” Sopilnik continues. “We spoke with pride, interacting with parts of other branches of the military:“ We are Shkadovtsy! ”And it was clear that in battle we would not let it down that the combat mission would be carried out with honor.
IN THE POST-WAR YEARS
Commanding the division, army, Northern group of troops (in Poland) already in the post-war years, being the main military adviser in Cuba (in the office of the current head of the Cuban Republic, and earlier Minister of Defense Raul Castro, the portrait of Ivan Nikolayevich hangs today in the most honorable place among other advisers), Ivan Shkadov showed courage, perseverance in achieving the goal, flexibility in solving complex problems, great diligence. All these qualities allowed him in 1972 a year after becoming the head of the Main Directorate of Higher Education Institutions of the Ministry of Defense to become the head of the Main Personnel Directorate, which he headed for about 15 years, being simultaneously the Deputy Minister of Defense for personnel with 1982. It must be said that this appointment took place, possibly, against the will of the then Minister of Defense of the USSR, Marshal of the Soviet Union, Andrei Grechko. In this situation, Shkadov was able to prove to the Minister of Defense with his ability to understand people, through diplomacy and exceptional execution, that he was in his place.
Then, no matter who led the Ministry of Defense, the authority of Ivan Nikolayevich only grew. His marshals of the Soviet Union, Dmitry Ustinov and Sergey Sokolov, highly valued him. For an objective approach to people, the general of the army of Shkadov was respected in the army, where he knew thoroughly every division commander, many regimental commanders and other officers.
When the first Orange Revolution broke out in Czechoslovakia in 1968, one might say, the decision was made to introduce the Allied forces of the Warsaw Pact under the command of Marshal of the Soviet Union Ivan Yakubovsky. His first deputy was Colonel-General Shkadov. Thanks to an intelligent, flexible command that took into account all the nuances of the situation, it was possible to stabilize the situation almost bloodlessly and to give it the necessary development. As Soviet and Western specialists later noted, from a military point of view, the operation was carried out clearly, quickly and efficiently.
As Army General Valentin Varennikov noted, everywhere, at all posts, Ivan Nikolaevich Shkadov skillfully and generously conveyed his rich combat experience and deep knowledge. Ivan Nikolayevich published a lot of capital works, as well as articles and speeches that have not lost their relevance in the present. He paid special attention in his professional activities to the training of officers.
During the period of his tenure as Chief of the Main Directorate of the Defense Directorate of the Ministry of Defense, he had to resolve cardinal issues of personnel policy in the Ministry of Defense. It was during this period that the restructuring of the officer training system was carried out, which consisted in transferring almost all secondary military educational institutions to higher education institutions, with 4 – 5 years of training, which trained officers with higher military-special education.
Former employee of the GUK, Major General (Retired) Nikolayev recalled a case that had taken place in the Strategic Missile Forces, which had happened to the commander of the missile regiment, Lieutenant Colonel Nikolai Solovtsov: in the registration card, and then - the second party penalty for the case of unauthorized absenteeism committed by one military regiment. During the period of nearly three years of command, the Solovtsov regiment proved to be a mature, promising commander. There was a question about his nomination to a higher position - chief of staff of the missile division. However, according to the established tradition, the officer who received two party penalties, as a rule, closed the way to the nomination for the highest position. With the report of Shkadov about this case, as well as deeply knowing the business and personal qualities of this regimental commander, I convinced him that he was a worthy candidate for the highest position.
Nikolay Solovtsov became commander of the missile division, commanded the rocket army, was the first deputy commander-in-chief of the Strategic Missile Forces, head of the Peter the Great Academy and successfully commanded the Strategic Missile Forces from 2001. So Shkadov's confidence in the officer contributed to his career.
“I am reminded,” notes Ivan Klimenko, the former first secretary of the Smolensk Regional Committee of the CPSU (in 1969 – 1987), “that during our conversations Ivan Nikolayevich never expressed any requests or wishes regarding his son Alexander Ivanovich, who lived and worked in Smolensk at the famous plant "Crystal". Only once, when I informed him that we had very good relations with the Ministry of the Military-Industrial Complex (MIC), he incidentally remarked: “Some MIC ministers suggest that I invite my son to work in Moscow. But, knowing these “ministerial corridors”, I came to the conclusion - let him work in the work collective for a longer time and pass the education school there. Then in life he will stand stronger on his own feet. ”
In the end, Alexander Shkadov remained at the plant, worked for many years as chief engineer, then headed and successfully managed this largest enterprise in Smolensk. He was killed in an assassination attempt on August 1 of the year 1998. This crime has not yet been solved. The case of Alexander Ivanovich was continued by his son, Maxim Shkadov, sacredly preserving the memory of his father and grandfather.
PRINCIPLES DON'T CHANGE
When perestroika began and the flow of slander fell upon the generals, Ivan Shkadov, with all his desire, was difficult to blame. But the pressure on the defenders of the Soviet system was growing. And in 1987, he had to file a report and go to the group of general inspectors. He became deputy head of the group of general inspectors, headed its party organization and the All-Union editorial board of the Book of Memory of the Fallen during the Great Patriotic War.
Shkadov was not a dogma. And by and large, he probably could agree and support any reforms that would go for the benefit of all the people, would strengthen our state. But in the alarming years of drastic changes, Shkadov became increasingly convinced that the losses were great and the acquisitions were sometimes illusory. And this understanding was especially tragic for people of his generation and warehouse.
It can be recognized that the tragic death of Shkadov in February 1991 of the year saved him from even greater feelings for the fate of the fatherland. Returning to his office from Defense Minister Dmitry Yazov with a folder in which the decree of the USSR President gave the work on the Book of Memory of the fallen in the Great Patriotic War, Ivan Shkadov was hit by a car driven by a Cuban diplomat and soon died. The hidden springs of the tragic death of General of the Army Shkadov are still not completely clarified today.
It would not be superfluous to mention that Dmitry Yazov worked for several years under the leadership of Ivan Shkadov in the State Management Committee and always spoke warmly of his business and human qualities. The very future minister of defense did not always have enough leadership qualities and natural wisdom. He had something to learn from Ivan Nikolaevich.
THE LAST BATTLE
Before retiring from life, Shkadov entered his last unequal battle with those who smeared our Victory in the Great Patriotic War with black paint. In particular, he wrote: “It is interesting that in the recent past, the current home-grown subversors of our Victory shouted most loudly about its greatness, the military wisdom of the Supreme Commander, reached the Olympus of academic degrees and titles, then made somersaults and were in the vanguard of the fighters against the Victory cult ". Now they are spreading everything to dust: the pre-war domestic and foreign policy of the state, the combat capability of the Armed Forces, reject the moral and political unity and friendship of the peoples of the Soviet Union. The initial period of the war is shown only as a catastrophe. Our losses are doubled and even tripled and the losses of the enemy decrease. Half-truths and lies under the flag of publicity and pluralism of opinions spill out like dirty slop for a generation that did not know war.
After the death of Shkadov, two editions were published (Chelyabinsk, 2001 and Smolensk, 2002) his memoirs “But memory does not give us peace of mind”. He wrote them mostly by himself in a beautiful small handwriting. “And the memory does not give us peace” is a book that is needed now more than ever before, as it actually exposes some “historians” who, to please “democratic” values, are ready to distort our heroic and tragic military history.
I am sure that the memory of the Hero of the Soviet Union, Army General Ivan Nikolaevich Shkadov, will live not only in our officer corps, but also among those of our citizens for whom the words about patriotism and service to the motherland are not an empty sound. And such and today, and tomorrow in Russia - the vast majority.