Soldiers and Officers
276 th Yekaterinburg
motorized rifle regiment dedicated
276 th Yekaterinburg
motorized rifle regiment dedicated
The 276th motorized rifle regiment, consisting of two motorized rifle battalions, one tank battalion, self-propelled gun battalion, mortar battery, reconnaissance, remrota, RMO, communications company, commandant platoon and other units - only about 1200 people - on December 23, 1994 plunged into echelons in Yekaterinburg and moved to Chechnya. After 2 days he was already in Mozdok, after another 2 days he entered the fighting. He took the first serious battle for Sadovaya (on the outskirts of Grozny), where it burned down tank company and several infantry fighting vehicles.
On New Year's Eve 1995, the regiment participated in the storming of Grozny. The battalions entered by Lermontov and Pervomayskaya. February 10, exhausted by the continuous battles, the regiment transferred positions and roadblocks to the “weshveshnik” and left Grozny “to rest”: people were left to freeze on the Terek ridge.
I am a student of the history department at Moscow State University. He grew up in a military family: father, grandfather, great-grandfathers - officers. After serving urgent and wanting to prove their independence, he entered a civilian university, but soon realized that a career as a scientist does not deceive me. I wanted to serve another year to decide finally whether I should continue the family dynasty or not. So in the fall of 1994 of the year, already at the fourth year, he took academic leave and enlisted for contract service in the Russian army.
Until January 1995, he served in the Urals, in his native part. And on February 10, on their own request, 1995 was sent to Chechnya.
We flew to Mozdok. We are 23 volunteer contractor from Yekaterinburg. I am a senior team. Directed to fill the vacant position of the platoon in one of the mouth 276 MSE. The team consists mainly of 30 – 40 guys, but the oldest one is 47. Almost all - with combat experience. Mainly, of course, "Afghans". But there are others: “Abkhazians”, “Karabakhs”, “Oshs”. For some, this is not the second, but the third, fourth, or even the fifth war.
To me, all 23, I'm young and carefree, and this is my baptism of fire.
“Specialists” from Asbest flew with us, as well as a group of officers, like us, sent to replenish the 276 regiment. The officers were missed aside. These were mainly “jackets”: lieutenants-conscripts, called up for 2 years after civilian universities to fill the posts of platoon commanders who were staff officers before them. It can be understood that it was the platoon that made up the overwhelming share of casualties among officers in the battles for Grozny. The poor fellows shifted from one foot to the other and everyone had the same expression in their eyes: “How did I get to this life?”
While they were looking around, the “specialists” somewhere amicably departed by an organized crowd, and the contract soldiers began to unload the “humanitarian aid”, which was filled to capacity with our An-12. We passed along the chain of boxes and stacked them in piles at the ladder. The last unloaded finished in the insole of an elderly Captain-doctor. The retiree, the “Afghan”, leapt in his mind against the state, volunteered to fight Chechnya. Doctors carefully laid on the stack "humanitarian" and left to rest.
A minute later, a filthy “UAZ” rolled up, a mighty handful of colonels and lieutenant-colonels of a very brave look poured out of it. We were built, and one of them pushed a speech, from which we learned that we had arrived in Mozdok (and we thought - in San Francisco!), In North Ossetia, and today we will be delivered to Grozny by the first “spinner”. We were also informed that Chechnya is a zone of armed conflict, where people can easily be killed, and that it is not too late to change their mind. Those of the contract servicemen who are not sure that they made the right choice should get out of order right now, and they will immediately, with the same "board", be brought back to Yekaterinburg, where they will be able to file reports of dismissal, and so on. t. n.
Naturally, the system did not even budge. Not so many days through all the bureaucratic barriers we broke through here in order to arrange a performance. And it’s a sin for us, wolves shot, dogs of war, to sit behind the backs of 18-year-old conscripts at home. Chechnya should be punished properly so that others are discouraged. And we can not wait to do it.
Out of action, an unbridled cue suddenly snapped: We are here for ... Subscribe! ".
The brave colonel did not get angry at all, but he smiled at us fatherly. He said that 276 got great (over a quarter of the loss of personnel), but that this is great - the best in the group! - a regiment whose reconnaissance company was taken by the Dudayev Palace ...
Needless to say, neither on this day nor the next did we get to our unit.
... And I dreamed that we were flying again to An-12, all the windows were broken and the cabin was spread cold wet rubbish with snow, packed into the eyes, into the ears, by the collar.
Knocking out my march with my teeth, I woke up and remembered that I was lying on a raincoat tent spread out on a concrete floor in a gigantic, windswept hangar without windows and doors. The roof of the hangar looks like a chess field, through the white cells of which, right on the face, I pour that wet garbage with snow. My throat hurts, my head hurts, my nose is not breathing, my eyes are watering ... I caught a cold from the miracle hero.
Grunting and overwhelmingly numb, I climb into the duffel bag. He ate two pills at once — aspirin and biseptol — sipped from a flask of ice-cold vodka and, leaning back, froze, breathing heavily ... After resting for a while, he “took the communion” again, lit a cigarette and began to survey the troops entrusted to me.
The agony in the throes awoke, grumbling and thundering under the arches of the cold hangar with an angry mate. We quickly lit a fire and boiled suhpai soup in a large bucket.
After breakfast, I went in search of a dispatcher: find out how they have about the promised "board" on Grozny. Dispatcher found without difficulty, but it turned out that the "board" is not expected. Maybe in the evening, and maybe tomorrow ... "Where are you, in fact, in such a hurry, young man?"
I went "home" to the hangar. Coming up, I saw that my fighters were unloading a huge helicopter with a “200 cargo”.
I do not know who invented the beautiful tale of "zinc coffins." The dead were wrapped in an overcoat, a raincoat, blankets, and just pieces of tarpaulin. Many are disfigured badly, and some seem to have fallen asleep. These were the first corpses I saw, and I was slightly shaking.
My contract soldiers laid the bodies in KamAZ and argued whether they would fly on this helicopter or on another, which was standing on the nearby patch and from which some Russian grandmothers and grandfathers got out - refugees. The last was a skinny soldier in a dirty overcoat and with a hand on a sling. He looked around with crazy eyes and seemed to disbelieve his salvation.
Since today we are not flying anywhere, we go on a visit to the helicopter pilots who invited us "for four hundred drops." That night, one of the crews was shot down over the pass, and it is still unknown who survived. On this occasion, the flyers were terribly angry and wished us to get to the Chechens as soon as possible in order to cut them all to one and all: both peaceful and non-peaceful. The main thing - we agreed that tomorrow morning they will organize us "board".
We did not wait
"Board" was so tiny that we all could barely fit in it. And nevertheless we climbed into it, and in half an hour I had already presented the replenishment to the regimental commander, Colonel Sergey B.
"Platoon! Attention! The alignment to the middle! ”- with an impeccable line step (taught!) I fly up to the colonel and report. The colonel is a dense forties man with a tired face and in a simple tanker without insignia. "Do not shout, please ..." - winced, holding out his hand. They greeted each other. “Allow me to give the command“ at ease ”?” I muttered in confusion. “Yes,” the commander waved his hand. The system collapsed by itself, the people surrounded it in a semicircle, and the regiment began to say: well, they say that they have arrived, well done, now they will feed you and distribute them by mouth. Grozny is practically taken, the day before yesterday the regiment was withdrawn from the city, and now the checkpoint is in the North, and the battalions are in the mountains north-west of the airport, on the Tersky Ridge.
Well, did not have time. Grozny has already been taken, and the very 18-year-old blockheads we came to help make it. Now, according to the colonel, Argun, Gudermes, and Shali, and the mountains in the south of Chechnya were waiting for us.
With the capture of Grozny, an open, positional war ended and a mean, sly, partisan and sabotage war began. If in Grozny they took Russian stubbornness and courage, then in the “greens” and in the mountains it took cunning plus cunning again. Later, many soldiers who survived the New Year’s storming of Grozny recognized that, despite the terrible losses, it was easier to fight there.
The first battle
Descending 18 February into the valley between the ridge and the northern suburbs of the city, we scattered checkpoints around all of these “greenhouses”, which were labyrinths of aryks, forest belts, vineyards, gardens, private summer cottages with many one- and two-story buildings. If on the pass we were buried in the snow, then, descending into the valley, we got into the summer.
The grouping of spirits escaped from the ring of internal troops in Grozny, and some of them dissolved in the area: rest, wake up, sleep off, and scatter to their homes, in order to re-form into many small mobile gangs. “E ... specifically, everything that moves!” Was the instruction that our company officer gave before the performance.
Our 8-I company, at three checkpoints, straightened one of the roads leading to Severny Airport at crossroads. The interval between platoons is 1,5 – 2 kilometers. On three sides close - a solid wall of "green stuff". On my block, on the one hand, there are vineyards, and on the other, country garden plots. We immediately, before the onset of darkness, rushed to mine this "brilliant green" with hand grenades and "signalization" on stretch marks. Naryl trenches, a gap in case of mortar shelling, buried the BMP in the caponiers, placed machine guns on nearby rooftops. In general, prepared for the night.
We settled in a small house with a Chechen named Ramsay. The guy is quite decent. Every day he went to the village: apparently, to tell the Mujahideen brothers about the results of their nightly affairs. In the village he has a second house and cattle.
He brings us fresh tortillas, milk, tea, sugar, salt, water and so on. For this we tolerate him, although we try not to talk about anything serious with him; He also observes the "subordination", trying not to call too much eyes and not to run into trouble.
According to local notions, Ramsay is poor: two houses, three horses, two cows, a small flock of sheep. He has no family. There is a brother somewhere, but where he is now is unknown: somewhere he is fighting, probably, against the Russians.
Once a special person came from the regiment and took Ramsay to the "filter". There riot policemen beat him all night long, and our company company drove after him the next morning. He took: he said it was "good Chechen". Our doctor then treated him ...
The very first night we were visited. In the evening and the whole night, from time to time we were lightly shelled from the vineyards. Fighters sluggishly snapped. Meanwhile, from the opposite side - from the dacha plots - to us, slowly, quietly and foolishly firing, bypassing or removing our stretch marks, the group moved imperceptibly. Exploring the next day, the traces left on the ground, drops of blood, and scraps of clothing, I determined that this group consisted of 8 – 10 of not sickly men. The tracks were mostly 44 – 46-th sizes; One of the Mujahideen was an Arab: from his pocket a small piece of copper — the coins of the United Arab Emirates — spilled out onto the grass.
Around 4 in the morning, some of them still stepped on the stretch. The "signaling" triggered, calling upon itself a sea of fire. The spirits fought back, but then our PC hit the nearest roof, and the “warriors of Islam” rolled back, taking the wounded away.
Soon, however, we discovered that some remained. In the attic window of a two-story mansion, an observer spotted a green light of a night sight in his night-glasses. At all our confused firing at random, the Mujahid did not pay the slightest attention and sprawled out in the attic some hundred meters away from us.
Without thinking twice, I grabbed a “Fly” and blasted right across the hacienda. But, “having played” on the grid-chain-link stretched in front of the house, the charge went up and, having flown over a couple of blocks, it exploded somewhere. The spirit moved from the attic to the second floor and there was silent. The green light, visible to me in the night binoculars, gave him away with his head, like a taxi flashlight. The Chechen was sitting quietly and, apparently, was waiting for everyone to calm down, in order to calmly choose a victim and shoot her.
One of the fighters threw a machine gun behind his back and, holding a grenade in each hand, got out of the trench and, dodging like a hare, ran to the house. The Chechen fired, but missed. Then I found that I also had a grenade in my hand, already without a ring, and I ran after the soldier. Without letting the spirit pop out, PCs are thrashed around the house, and we run without problems. Scraps of thoughts about the frailty of life rush through my head ... Throwing grenades through the windows, rushed into the house and combed it all, pouring water into all the rooms from machine guns and gantry plates. The mansion was completely empty. In one of the rooms, still warm 46-size sneakers were lying around (the sniper moved barefoot around the house so as not to make any noise). The Chechen escaped without shoes and without waiting for the two Russian idiots to turn him into noodles.
Getting light. It became clear that today the fighting is over. Braiding the whole house with stretch marks, we set off for breakfast.
We returned to the jokes of our comrades: they say, where are the ears of a dead Chechen?
The commander of the 8 Company, his namesake, I knew before the war - a graduate of the Tashkent VOKU, not a fool about a drink and a fight. He was distinguished by a cheerful disposition, reasonable rigor and justice. The soldiers hurt themselves in the pancake, carrying out his commands: not for fear, but solely from the desire to earn his praise and approval. In such cases, when the company officer was pleased with someone, he uttered: "Specifically!" (That is, well). If not, then: “About nothing!” (That is, it is no good). These his "concrete" and "about anything" constantly flew in the air ...
He knew his business tightly and was considered the best company officer in the regiment (today he is already a battalion commander). I was quite happy, having come under his beginning and found him alive and in good health. He has not changed, only kilograms on 10 "built."
Aleksey put me on the 2 platoon, who lost his platoon platoon in Grozny (so I simultaneously became a “castle” and an acting platoon platoon). In addition, the platoon lost two BMP of three and a half of the personnel. In total, the company lost about 30 soldiers from 60 (four were killed, the rest were wounded and missing), two officers (platoon and deputy commander) and two ensigns (foreman and equipment). Zampolit and ensigns sent new ones, but I replaced the platoon. In addition, I immediately had to sit down at the helm of the only platooned bempumpshka, because instead of a wounded mechanic, a slowed-up young soldier was put on her.
Total left in the company 6 machines from 10. Gradually, we received two more restored bempuses from the remrota, and in May another one. The regiment never saw the new technology ...
From our team of volunteers, three came to the 8 company: I (Hispanic), Yura (Klop) and Dima (Terminator).
The bug is a sniper. He fought in Afghanistan, participated in the Osh conflict. He received his call sign for being just a little taller than his SVD. Soon, he showed himself in the 3 platoon as a wonderful sniper and scout who, thanks to his small flesh, was able to disguise himself so well in any situation that he could be found only by stepping on him.
Dima - Terminator is the fourth war. He is a “PC gunner”, he is also a “calculation number”. The PC in his paws looks like a toy. He usually carries a spare zinc with a ribbon on the hump.
Yura died in Shali in June, hitting a grenade launcher. The blast wave threw him out of the fourth floor window. Dima remained to take revenge: they had been friends since childhood and neighbors on the porch. I went on vacation and then left the army ... And today I ask myself every day: did I do the right thing?
The official conversation on taking office took about five minutes: it took so much to enter us into the SDC. Then we recalled mutual friends: someone resigned, refusing to fight, someone here - fighting. Someone has already been killed, wounded, captured, unaccounted for ...
From time to time the fighters were taken for the guitar, in a pot on the coals they were warming themselves peacefully with coffee and cognac, then tea with vodka. For soaking wet and colds it is quite appropriate drinks. Tents, sleeping bags, mattresses and other households were still being dumped in Mozdok, loading vehicles with ammunition and getting rid of everything superfluous.
... A conscript soldier named Raph sang, looking into the fire and stamping to the beat with a leaky kirzach:
And do not rush you to bury us,
We still have cases here ...
We still have cases here ...
Soldiers vied with us, who had just arrived from Russia, about the battles in Grozny. They, it seems, did not believe that Grozny had already been taken, and they were still alive.
... About how in one of the houses, in the basement of which sat a machine-gun crew - two soldiers from the 3-th platoon, pleased mine. The platoonman climbed them out. Stumbled into the body in the dark, touched: still warm, but breathing is not audible. I wanted to find the pulse in my throat and found that there was no head. Found the second one - first of all I checked: is the head in place? It turned out to be in place, and even the pulse is palpable. I decided to pull it out. Vkolol promedol and took the legs ... Feet remained in his hands - by themselves.
The face of the platoon commander, Lieutenant Sergey D., when he tells me this, is completely calm. He speaks in detail and slowly, as if retelling the content of the film. Apparently, the human mind refuses to take seriously the reality of what is happening. This reality will still get him - after months, when he returns home.
... For information on how, in the same, 3-m platoon knocked out the bebampeshka. Of the entire crew, only the gunner survived - Junior Sergeant N. Ogloshchy and stunned by the battle, he did not leave the burning car. He escaped, just shooting the entire ammunition. A minute later, the BMP rushed so that the tower fell to the devil’s dogs: either the fuel tanks “played”, or it was blown over it again ...
... About how they took Minute and how the spirits during the assault hung prisoners of Russian soldiers on the windows ...
... About how, having visited the city Zoological Museum, our gallant motorized infantry decorated the towers of their tanks and infantry fighting vehicles with stuffed lynxes, wolves, jackals and other living creatures and how for all this ugly splendor of grinning animal faces the Chechens assigned the regiment the title "Reservoir Dogs" and "Teeth dragon "(known from radio intercepts).
Excitement suppresses fear
Almost every night, especially in the morning, we fought back. At dawn, putting observers, for four hours slept. Then I took a duffel bag with grenades, pegs and a string for stretch marks, one fighter with me and went to the "Zelenka" - to hang garlands of stretch marks. Yes, not anyhow, but with many tricks (“jumping pomegranate”, stretching with a long loop, “potato”, that is, without stretching, etc.). Along the way, we examined the spiritual footprints and tried to unravel their designs. All this night fuss all the time seemed to me rather confused. I could not understand why they climbed to us nightly: that, on our company, the light came together like a wedge, or what? Reflecting this way, I determined where to put the “secrets” (and whether to expose), and went to the 1 platoon unit to the company company - to receive the target.
For mining and for night work, I usually took with me the same fighter - the very one who rushed to blow up the sniper on the first night.
In fact, he was my gunner at the BMP, the squad leader; however, as a gunner, practically everyone could replace him, but as a sergeant he was not yet required: I had a little more than a dozen fighters. Sometimes I also took another soldier with me, calm, tacitly small, two-meter tall and bearish. He meekly dragged the bag of “Bumblebees” to the hump when we went to “make some noise” in country houses.
The experience gained once in a sapper training center deployed on the basis of a demining regiment derived from Afgan was useful. For four months in Chechnya, I hung several hundred of these "toys." I braided my first checkpoint in the Alkhanchur Valley with several belts of stretch marks. Every day I filled in the gaps formed during the night and added new stretch marks. We stayed here for more than a month, so soon only the roads themselves and a few passes in the “Zelenka” left for their reconnaissance groups and “secrets” remained unpolished.
Bringing "secrets" to "Zelenka" has become our usual practice; holding radio contact with them, roadblocks and company officers were aware of what was happening within a kilometer radius. As a rule, noticing a group and reporting about it, the “secret” from 1 – 2 a person receives a command not to shoot and continue observation.
The “secret” in such a difficult terrain is a most useful thing. When you sit on your block in a dull defense, you feel like a fool a fool: the bait that a predator wants to swallow. In the "secret" roles change: he is a fool, and you are a hunter. Excitement suppresses fear.
People sometimes ask me: how could it happen that yesterday’s student, the man of the most peaceful specialty in the world, a school teacher, turned into a murderer? I do not know what to answer, because I never felt like a murderer, even killing. You want to survive yourself and help your comrades in this, and you climb, like a Mohawk, on greens, put up stretches, go to ambushes and secrets, drive BMPs, hammer from Bumblebees and Flies, showing qualities not a “nerd” but a fighter.
Famous scientist, professor stories, world magnitude and one of the founding fathers of all modern Western historiography, Mark Blok (who is also an active fighter and one of the leaders of the French Resistance during the Nazi occupation) once said: “There are professional soldiers who will never become real warriors, and there are purely civilian people - warriors by vocation ... "It is not surprising that yesterday's" jackets "under the influence of" resentment for power "turn into fighters, and schoolchildren become good soldiers.
Of course, I am not a professional. Everything I did was based on bare enthusiasm and the need to survive. To learn something new, be sure to desire to learn (including from their subordinates). Professionals are not born. To ambush, you need desperate arrogance and faith in the rightness of your cause, which allows you to go for a deadly risk if it gives you the opportunity to kill the enemy. In order to fight at all, in addition to some inner human qualities, we need horse endurance: for it, I am grateful to the long-term fascination with the classic struggle (school SKA MVO). I am also grateful to Albert Makashov, who, when I was a conscript, was our commander and strictly watched that the soldiers first learned how to shoot, and only after that - sweep the streets (although it was also possible to sweep pretty badly).
20 February night was surprisingly calm. In the morning, the fighters spotted their bodywork with binoculars at Zelenka, about 200 meters. Did not shoot - tired. We lie on the roof, watch. One guest is sitting in the bushes, he hasn’t reached the stretch marks, and he probably isn’t going to. Approximately in the same place I left a passage through a minefield. An idea arose: to stun the Chechen with obscene fire from the grenade launchers and under the cover of this fire try to take the gangster alive.
Of course, a good Chechen is a dead Chechen. But the boys caught fire to exchange it for one of their own.
Three fighters began to bombard the spirit with VOGs, and I and my partner rushed down the aisle. After four volleys, as agreed, the fire stopped. Getting close, they saw a trench and some pieces of meat with scraps of clothing. It was a great position - right opposite our caponier for the BMP. Lay, wait. Getting light. If there was someone else there, then, apparently, everyone got away. At dawn, an unused RPG-18 (“Fly” of the old type) was found in the grass at the parapet.
Returning with a captured grenade launcher, they decided to rearrange the BMP so that they did not stick out in plain sight, like training targets. One hid under a canopy and threw all sorts of garbage and trash. The other one (from the 3 platoon) was driven backwards to some kind of barn. If necessary, they could quickly roll out on the firing lines - in caponiers.
Machine guns from the roofs also decided to remove. One machine-gun crew was “buried” under an old, abandoned crawler tractor. Another machine-gunner settled in the old concrete well, breaking through the loopholes in all directions, building a platform to stand, and throwing the gate torn from its hinges to prevent it from dripping.
For lack of a string for stretch marks, they closed the plot in "Zelenka" with barbed wire, spread out right across the grass like the MW, hanging a grenade without rings on it and stuck it in the ground.
The gas industry ranks are thinning ...
We had a lot of fuss because of spotters. KP regiment once even slightly fired from mortars. Slightly - because one of the "secrets" in time discovered the spotter, who worked from the roof of a country house, using tracer and PBS. One "Bumblebee" was enough to stop the mortar shelling. After that, our company (and others too) regularly sent groups to "free hunt" for spotters.
Five spotters worked in the area of our company. In the morning they were going to a conditional place and leaving by some kind of car (judging by the tracks - BRDM or GAZ-66 with a Beteer protector). At the same time, in the afternoon, along our very deserted road, all the time, five tall but unarmed Chechens used to drive on GAZ-66, pretending to repair the gas pipeline and submitting documents to the Ministry of Emergency Situations.
One day, after an unsuccessful night attempt to cover one of the spotters, we braked them during the day, put muzzles in the dirt, tied up and decided to finish, when the commander of the company suddenly announced, who forbade shooting them and ordered them to be delivered to the regiment's command post.
Throwing the spirits into the BMP assault unit, I drove them to the checkpoint. Colonel B. ordered to take them to the filtration camp: let them understand. In the "filter" the riot policemen said that everything was full of them and they were doing so and so: take them to FGC.
The Federal Grid Company removed a written explanation from me and was incredibly surprised: they say, if these are spotters, why didn't you shoot them yourself right away? The circle is closed.
Here, out of nowhere, a certain officer drew up who convinced the security colonel that he knew these people as gas workers working under the Ministry of Emergency Situations. The colonel shrugged and ordered to let them go on all four sides. GAZ-66 returned them to the Chechens, and they drove off. To my surprise, then I read in “Soldier of Fortune” about this episode as presented by the mentioned officer - the author Andrei Miami. He very flatteringly called us, ordinary infantrymen, “special forces”, and spotters - “gasmen”. (see about this: Opposition. "Third Party" in the Chechen conflict - through the eyes of the man who prepared her for the battle).
In my defense, I want to say that after the described night flight of the Bumblebee, there were four day-time gas workers. Soon after a tip from a local resident, we burned two more. There were two day-time gas-makers, and they moved to ZIL-131. They easily passed by the roadblocks, presenting flawless documents, stopped where they wanted to “repair” the pipe and carefully examined our positions. These guys seemed to be philosophical about death. However, they stopped working near the checkpoint of the 8 th company.
Special forces raid
We were warned that there might be surprises on the night of February 23: exactly 50 years ago the Stalinist deportation of the Chechen population began that day. A group of Rostov “specialists” came to our bloc: they had an idea to set up an ambush between the 8-th company and Sadovaya blocks, assuming that the daytime civilians of this village are night-time Mujahideen doing their sorties at night, and returning in the morning to to their wives.
In the evening, a prolonged rain began to fall, in the middle of the night it passed into thick snow, which limited visibility to zero. "Specialists" carefully studied the layout of stretch marks and mines that I compiled, then they were divided into two batches. One party went to "Zelenka", and the second set out on display its BPR, cut the tape recorder to full volume and began to "celebrate" 23 February with might and main, imitating a total mess and drunkenness.
I don’t know what they did there in “Zelenka”, but in the middle of the night they began to tear stretch marks there, then suddenly pulled up the “monk”, and after half an hour the group returned and told them that somewhere there was overwhelmed. To celebrate, they settled in one of the houses, hung their rags around the stove and let them dry.
At this time, under the cover of snowfall, several spirits came to the roadblock. Our sentry guard, guarding the house where the “specialists” were resting, noticed them almost in 20 meters from him. Wildly shouting, he threw into the darkness of the RGD and began to water the snow whirlwind from the porch of his PKK. Some of my fighters launched a flare rocket. The spirits instantly retreated and dissolved in the snow — only the bushes cracked. Apparently, they decided not to take the fight, because the expected effect of surprise did not work: from all the posts, the infantry combed out the surrounding "Zelenka" from machine guns and grenade launchers. Soon everything calmed down.
In this spirit, the events were repeated every night. We were fired from afar or, trying to get close, ran across the "secrets" and stretch marks. But nothing serious happened: we have never undergone either a mortar or a grenade launcher. I was worried that I did not understand the tactics of the enemy. In principle, to destroy any checkpoint, it is enough to get to it at least 200 – 300 meters and then wipe it off the face of the earth with the help of “Bumblebees” or RPG-7. However, except for one case with that scumbag with “The Fly”, which we covered from grenade launchers, this did not happen. Trying to prevent such an opportunity in the future, I continued to mine the "brilliant green" on the most dangerous areas, exposed the "secrets" and went to them myself. It happened that less than half of the platoon remained on the guard of the actual checkpoint, while the rest dispersed around the neighborhood.
Understanding the futility of these attempts, I waited for the moment to come and they would still block us. It never happened. Maybe we took the right measures, and perhaps the Mujahideen got weak, untrained and stupid.
So we would have competed in stupidity, if in March we were not transferred to Argun.
February 27 for the first and last time we saw a spiritual helicopter. He flew over our positions, broadcasting to a loudspeaker and calling for the local population to resist the Russian troops, and the soldiers to shoot the officers and surrender to captivity, where they will be fed and taken home.
They shot him a little (more to clear his conscience) and, of course, did not hit.
If I had an RPG-7, maybe I would have got it, but, first, the RPG-7 was not in the company at all, and secondly, I just jumped naked out of the bath with only one machine gun in my hands , and machine gunners did not have time to react.
The next day they shot Palych, our captain-doctor. As usual, the "signaling" worked, the sentries opened fire, a short firefight ensued, the spirits quickly retreated, and everything died down. At first it seemed that no one was injured, and only fifteen minutes later they accidentally found the captain lying on the porch, prone in a pool of blood.
They reported on the radio to the company commander and rushed to the North through the “block” of the 1 platoon, where the company commander sat at the helm and drove like crazy.
The most annoying thing is that the doctor in general had no reason to lean out of the shelter. Curiosity failed ...
We had no other losses. Only one crank got a shard from the RGD-5, but stepped on his own stretch. A fragment of him with jokes, jokes pulled out with pliers and poured the hole formed with vodka. After which they made an attempt to impose a tourniquet above the injury site, but he did not give.
The losses of our opponents were, I think, more substantial. Personally, I am sure of one killed and at least two wounded. I burned the first “Bumblebee”, the second I covered it with a grenade launcher, I shot the third one in a “secret”: noticing someone's nightlight in the “Zelenka”, fired at him the entire PKK store (45 + 1 in the trunk) at random, after which he started running off for cries Mojahed, who announced the district.
In addition, someone regularly undermined stretch marks, although for a person experienced four seconds is enough to lie down at a safe distance from the explosion. I myself three times run up on my own stretch marks. However, not everyone is so lucky: many stretch marks were instantaneous (the fuse is disassembled and the fire conductor retarder is replaced with gunpowder from a cartridge).
Sometimes a lonely cow wandered to the mines - then we had fresh meat.
15 March we announced: all the guys are pretty relax - go to Argun, Gudermes and Shali. It's time to work!
A large brigade from Chebarkul arrived from Russia, to which we must transfer our positions.
Losses they began to bear from the first day. Leaving us a company of Chebarkulians, which changed us, a scheme of minefields and an 40-liter can of cognac, we rolled out onto the road and lined up in a column, waiting for the team to advance to the North. We didn’t have time to drive away from our roadblock, when one of the Chebarkul people caught a knife from their hearts, which flew out of the “Zelenka”: he was hanging around the forest belt not out of need, not out of curiosity. Wheezing and staggering, he stepped onto the road and fell backwards. Chebarkulites crowded around the wounded man at a loss, not knowing what to do. Pushing them, two of my friends pushed through to him: the medical instructor Karas and the gunner from my car Edik. The crucian quickly covered the hole with a sealing gasket from the individual package and injected a tube of promedol. Edik did artificial respiration.
From somewhere appeared "Ural" of our castle. Having thrown the body into the body, they rushed to the hospital. In the "Ural" I jumped on the move.
The truck was flying like crazy, bouncing on potholes. The wounded man jumped up and down like a ball. His head was wound on the knees of my gunner. He was dying. His pulse disappeared all the time, and then Edward began to beat his palms on his cheeks and shout: “Breathe, you bastard!” Surprisingly: the pulse appeared again ...
We are approaching the North. On the road - congestion. Having fastened the horn with the tracers, I begin to wet the long bursts into the air - over the cars, which hastily give way to us ... When we brought the guy to the hospital, he still wheezed. Soon, someone in a white bloodied coat came out and, wiping his hands on himself, said that the guy was over ...
This death of a completely unknown person struck me. I was overwhelmed with pity and indignation. Like in January, when I first saw on the television the mutilated corpses of Russian soldiers on the streets of Grozny and joyful mujahideen dancing their wild war dance. It was then that I ran to file a report on Chechnya ...
It was the second Russian soldier who was killed right before my eyes. Malice choked me. Well, good, gentlemen, Chechens! We will not know pity. We will kill you until you all die.
We turned into dangerous beasts. We did not fight - we took revenge and tried to survive in order to take revenge. I don’t care how fair this war is to Chechens. "My country is always right, because it is my country." Separatism must be harshly suppressed, without this no power can exist, especially such a "patchwork" as ours.
I have no hatred for Chechens today. But if tomorrow fate will again push me with them, I will kill them without pity.
After dropping caterpillars along the center of what used to be called the “city of Grozny,” the regiment moved east to Argun. Day and night, without stopping for an hour, artillery worked. Helicopters and beaky Rooks rushed over our heads. Somewhere in front, to the left and to the right, gaps roared, and at night everything around was illuminated with red.
The artillery worked in the squares: in the city, in the villages, simply in the mountains and in Zelenka. We have not yet begun the assault, and the western half of Argun has already been razed to the ground, to the very foundations.
At the approaches met a thin line of defense. Stopped entrenched. Ahead, without hiding, the Mujahideen walk in full growth. Nobody shoots them. We are waiting for the team, preparing for the assault. The city is here on the horizon. At least shoot him from tanks and infantry fighting vehicles. Gunners in the heat of the towers turn, can not wait for them. I’m clinging onto my back two “Bumblebee”: in the city, I think, they will come in handy.
One group of spirits with a white flag is sent in our direction. Not reaching two hundred meters, they stop, wave their hands: they say, go to us, we will talk.
Combat takes two fighters and goes to the negotiations. Behind him was the deputy commander of the 8 th company. If I didn’t take it, I went along with the deputy politician: it’s very curious to hear what the commanding fathers will discuss.
The "fathers" did not speak for long. Chechens asked if we were going to storm them. Kombat confirmed that this is what we are going to do now, only we will receive a team. The Chechens say: guys, wait a day or two to fight, we want, they say, to save the city from total destruction, and the messengers have already been sent to Dudayev to allow him to surrender the city.
Here, take our political politician and bryakni: “Your Dudayev is a fagot!” They very calmly answered, they say, yours too. There was nothing to argue with us, and we decided to live a couple of days without firing.
Apparently, the regiment liked this decision, because we never received the command for the assault, and after two days Argun really surrendered without a fight. To this day, I respectfully recall that old Chechen, whose wisdom and endurance saved a lot of blood on both sides. Nice to deal with a worthy opponent.
More than two hundred militiamen laid down weapon and wandered around the surrounding villages. However, their main forces retreated to Gudermes and entrenched there.
The battalion and vicious regiment moved up to Gudermes, sweeping it from the west, north and south.
The jokes ended
The war is gaining momentum. Regimental intelligence ran into an ambush. Spirits burned BTR: the driver-technician was killed, three scouts were seriously injured. At night, the KP regiment was fired from AGS. Our company stood nearby: we observed this matter. They asked for permission to go ahead and see who was so accurate, but they didn’t get the go-ahead. The shelling stopped by itself.
The whole beginning of April is intensively preparing for the assault. We understand that Gudermes will not easily give way to us: the jokes are over. Against us is about 800 spirits, to whom even Dudayev is not a decree, the most frostbitten. These will fight.
Our entire regiment, if we consider only the "clean" infantry without headquarters, rear areas and other things, is no more than 500 people. Spirits outnumber us, we their - fire force. However, they are at home, and they have many other advantages.
We were divided into small armored groups (tank or “Shilka” plus 2 – 3 BMP), each of which received the task to gain a foothold in its section of urban suburbs. Remembering Grozny, no one is going to take the city, launching vehicles with marching columns along the main streets.
4 April, we took Gudermes, having lost only a few people wounded, one was killed. Having mastered the outskirts, the 1 Battalion knocked the spirits out of the center, and by evening the VEs arrived, cleaning the city completely. In the center, in the building of the pedagogical school, the commandant's office was located. The arrival of veveshnik untied our hands, and the 6-th regiment moved further east.
While we were busy with Gudermes, having overtaken us, the battalion of some landing force rode ahead. Under Isti-Soo, they met with resistance and, reportedly, have already lost an 7 man.
Slowly and awkwardly, but terribly and inevitably, the regiment was rolling eastward - towards the Dagestan border, on the other side of which the regiment was preparing to face the border guards regiment. Spirits appeared between two skating rinks on a narrow strip of land, and this strip of “sovereign Ichkeria” inexorably narrowed.
Wolves and cubs
By the evening of April 7, our 3 and tank battalions approached Easti-Soo. Stopped, dug in, put up posts. Throughout the night, tankers equaled the village with the land. In the morning, the sun illuminated the remains of what was still marked on the map as “the village of Isti-Su.” All day they stood motionless. She worked intelligence.
Brought replenishment - contract. Wolves Mostly former police officers who were dismissed from the authorities under various articles. Serious men who can seriously fight.
I want, however, to say a kind word about our conscripts. These 18-year-old wolf cubs are worthy of respect: hungry, dirty, dead tired, who have borne the brunt of the battles in Grozny, evil as devils, ignorant of pity and fear ... For 30 – 40-year-old contractor, war is a hobby, a favorite thing, vocation, refuge, finally. For the 18-year-old, this is a tragedy and a non-healing trauma.
He has many times more difficult than an adult peasant. But no one can say that a conscript as a soldier is worse than a contract. In December – January there were no contract servicemen in Chechnya at all, and the regiment fought as it should.
9 April again moved forward. Dodaviv armor accidentally surviving buildings and crackling caterpillars on brick kroshevu at the place of East-Su, the battalions rushed forward right along the excellent asphalt road.
Apparently, intelligence reported that everything was clean up to Novogroznenskaya. In the headphones, every few minutes, “Caliber zero-eight” (that is, “Attention, everyone!”) Was heard. I am “Geologist-57” (commander's call sign). Everyone speed up! ”
Guns - herringbone: from the head machine - to the left, the next - to the right, and so on throughout the column. Machines move with jerks and a snake, at a good speed: so as not to hit. I stuck my forehead to the triplex, I pressed the wheel to my chest, all the attention was on the road so as not to fly away. BMP - the large object healthy: 13 tons. On the asphalt behaves capriciously, the caterpillars slide like on the ice ...
Suddenly in the headset is heard: “Caliber zero-eight! To battle! Aim for ten hours! Caliber zero-eight, I - "Geologist-57". All - the fire! "
What? I go up in a marching way and gamblingly twirl my head off: what kind of goal is this for ten hours? On the left and in front, about a kilometer away from the head car, a truck with an aluminum booth and a blue cabin is dusting down the road away from the highway: not the ZIL-130, not the GAZ-53. Collective farmers any ...
Brakes, infantry frayed with armor. A gun barrel swam overhead. I quickly hired the hatch so as not to deafen the shot.
Guns barked across the column. The truck disappeared in the dust raised by the explosions, and suddenly from this dust a fire-reddish sheaf of fire rose up to the sky. A second later came the roar of a powerful explosion. BMP rocked the blast wave. I wonder what kind of vegetables these collective farmers carried?
We stopped in front of Novogroznenskaya. Behind it is the border to which we have pressed the spirits. The 3 Battalion locked the road. From the south, they were surrounded by companies of the 1 th battalion. From the north - paratroopers. From the east - frontiers. They have nowhere else to go. We are waiting for the team to the "last and decisive." In the air it “smells” of victory and the end of the war. We learn from the radio that Shali, Bamut and Vedeno are taken.
Our company is located in the area of a cemetery. This is very convenient: here the perfume will not cover us with mortars. We spent the night in some kind of religious structure. We stand in front of Novogroznenskaya day after day and watch the spirits of cockroaches spread out from under our noses. In the afternoon, along with refugees, Chechen spirits leave. They travel without weapons, and with documents they have full order. At night, groups of armed men crawl away. These are foreign mercenaries: Arabs, Ukrainians, Balts and others. Their affiliation is not a secret to anyone, it is enough to sit on the radio for an hour or two, driving across all frequencies in order to get some idea of the enemy. What a speech you will not hear!
We should have completed the offensive, finally destroying this grouping in Novogroznenskaya. But ... "do not dare, perhaps, the commanders of others to tear uniforms of Russian bayonets?". When the battalion reconnaissance caught the spirit, he carried all sorts of nonsense about the generals ... Only after returning home, I learned from the TV news that the “language” was not crazy at all: Maskhadov’s bid was in Novogroznenskaya. This is probably why our generals invented a truce in order to stop us: but what good, the war will end ... What kind of “truce” with gangsters and mojaheds can there be? What kind of nonsense?
At your own risk, in groups of 3 – 4 people do night raids to the village and, trying to prevent the spirits from sprawling, we burn and fire everything that leaves and crawls out of the outskirts.
In our company there was a constant night sabotage group: I, Klop (ensign-technician) and a radio operator-conscript Terminator, who is also the “personal bodyguard” of the company commander. Similar groups work in other companies. Tasks cut battalion.
The night had lain in the rain on the bare ground, and in vain. Everything would be fine, but today I began to cough up, and because of this I was removed from the night work: “Rest, get better.” There is nothing to argue: coughing in ambush - this is no good. With regret, I give my night glasses to the guys and go to the hot springs - “get well”. The sources are in a deep gorge, a kilometer west of our positions.
Taking advantage of the lull, I have been picking my BMP all day long: I have eliminated all air leaks, adjusted the handbrake, tie rods, brake bands. Removing the armor, cleaned the radiators. He pulled up the goose, changed the oil, set up the internal communication properly, serviced the batteries, scooped up all the dirt from the floor, tore off the "extra pieces" from the bulwarks. Having driven a car into a stream, I washed it all inside and out. Well, there is where to wash and most.
Invented a new dish: turtle baked in the coals. No worse than American legs.
In early May, we were transferred to the mountains northwest of Gudermes, to the southern tip of the Baragunsky Range. From here we hold at sight the railway bridge over the Sunzha, which is guarded by riot police. Before riot policemen cut out, they will have time to call the fire on themselves.
Every night they have a "war." Someone, as usual, climbs around the “greenbacks” around and breaks the stretch marks. Riot policemen from the evening until the morning are firing around without restoring with all kinds of weapons. After a few days, our 7-i company replaces them. Night "war" immediately stop: the infantry is spreading on the "secrets" and quietly shoots spirits. After a couple of days, no one around is climbing, and the 7-I company is sleeping peacefully.
At the same time, “up above”, there is absolutely silence, no war. Despite this, observers are posted around the clock, stretch marks are put. Routine prophylaxis. Farther north, the 1 Battalion is located along the ridge. Tankers, as usual, were scattered around all roadblocks.
Around - not a soul. Beauty and nature. The weather is wonderful: the heat, the rain, and then take and the snow falls at night. In the morning everything is melting, and in the afternoon - again Africa. And far to the south high mountains are visible, where the snow never melts. Someday we will get to them ...
Chebrets are growing all around, and we are constantly brewing it with tea. Nearby - Sunzha. If you throw a grenade at her, then the fish is collected full duffel bag.
And here everything is teeming with snakes, and our menu is enriched with a new dish: a snake sliced and roasted in a skillet.
And among all these “beauties and wonders” I increasingly dream about dirty and boring, but such an inaccessible Russia. Probably affects fatigue. Many of my comrades have been injured or killed, and I haven't got a scratch yet. How long can this luck last?
We are preparing to go to the south, in the area of Shali, Avtury, Kurchaloy, Mairtun, where the militia have intensified, not letting any militiamen to their villages.
One of these days, the term of the “moratorium” (another ingenious invention of Russian politicians) expires, after which the rabid dogs will again be pulled off the leash.
We are replenished with contractors and young people. Now in our company about 70 people. Also gave two restored combat vehicles. We teach new recruits to shoot, we run around the slides in the “armor”, we explain how to mine, monitor, use night-time devices, radio communications.
Young soldiers, as they say, “just from the train,” not like they shoot - even the footwomen can't really shake, but after wearing a bullet-proof vest for half an hour, they fall from fatigue.
Back in February, I filled my “bronik” with a triple set of titanium plates and I am very pleased with it, because I was convinced of its usefulness on my own skin, when, having received one blow to the stomach, which had knocked me off my legs, I found an AKM 7,62 bullet stuck between plates.
Of course, the argument between supporters and opponents of the bulletproof vest is endless. The usual argument of the latter is that it is heavy and deprives the fighter of mobility. I must, however, notice that the weight of a bulletproof vest I have long ceased to notice and can carry him for days, even sleep in it. Habit!
Worst of all - new contract. These are not the professionals and enthusiasts who were recruited at the beginning of the war. Went drunk, torn, homeless and just unemployed. One of them was immediately taken to the hospital with his hand torn off: he played with the Fly. The other was soon fired for heavy drinking. The third dived into the abyss on the "Urals" from the support platoon. The fourth one fell from the tank tower under the tracks of passing infantry fighting vehicles ... The survivors began to think something and after some repression and massacre more or less sobered up.
So the contract soldier is different. For me, it is better to get a replenishment from young and undeterred salags who can learn something than this rabble who can only be used for cannon fodder.
It is good that quite good guys got into my platoon who are ready to learn and ultimately survive.
A Farewell to Arms! See you soon?
We are losing. Dozens of wounded and dead. A battalion deputy master engineer “Uncle Zhenya”, an elderly and cheerful lieutenant colonel, a common favorite, was blown up on a mine ...
We do not get out of battle. We opened a hornet's nest here and now we are fighting not only at night, but also during the day. We were allowed through Shali and Avtury without a fight, after which the mousetrap slammed shut. Every day the space in front of us is handled by helicopters: they help us a lot. Kurchaloy is half destroyed. We proceed to Alleroy and Mirtunu. The other day, the 7 Company was half destroyed ...
There is neither the strength nor the desire to describe this mess in detail. Thank God, my term expired two weeks ago, I look forward to replacing.
And finally, on May 31, I received a two-month vacation (month for 1995 a year, 24 of the day for Chechnya and 4 of the day for the trip) and I can go home. The contract expires. The ultimate dream is to eat to the heap of good food, then sleep for a day, then get into the shower, and then sleep for another day.
The soul is torn in half. The joy of realizing the simple fact that you still survived is overshadowed by guilt in front of your comrades. After all, you throw them here, you are a traitor and a deserter, although no one will ever tell you that ... Some part of me will remain here forever - in Chechnya.
You can make a knightly gesture and refuse to leave, remaining to avenge the dead comrades, as did Dima-Terminator.
But I am not a knight without fear and reproach, and not Rambo. I still need to finish my education, and then - who knows? - Perhaps, if by that time the state reconsiders its attitude towards the army, I will return to military service - already a lieutenant. And then, I suppose, I still have to meet with the Chechens (after all, they will not stop not reached).
In the meantime, goodbye weapon!