Life has repeatedly proved the validity of the statement of Field Marshal Kutuzov: What are the officers and the army. It depends on the officers how much each soldier knows his maneuver, internally ready for sacrifice, including his life, in the name of state security, which, by and large, makes the army potentially victorious. At the same time, the officer himself must be most prepared to manage the use of violence in certain specific conditions, which, strictly speaking, distinguishes him from all civilian specialists. And if a good soldier or sergeant can be trained for 23 years, then it takes many times more time and money to train an officer. And since society, the state will not go anywhere from the need to protect its independence and sovereignty, they are obliged to train officers. These are common truths, the misunderstanding or ignoring of which leads the state to a catastrophe.
Today this danger seriously threatens our country. For two decades now, the shy away from military construction, which at various times was covered up with statements about modernization, reforming, giving a new look to the Armed Forces, but in fact came down to the elimination or restoration of various structures, then their enlargement or disintegration, movements from one region in the other and back, they eventually disoriented the officer corps, gave rise to it pofigizm, unwillingness to improve their professional skills. Separate bursts of alleged activity of the army service, which are expressed in the exercise, are only evidence of this, since they are organized at a primitive level, according to well-known schemes without any great effort.
To this should be added the low and social position of officers and military retirees. What this has led to show polls on the topic “How do you imagine an officer of today's Russian army?”, Organized recently by one research company. Almost 40 percent of respondents gave negative characteristics, 27 - positive, 4 - neutral, the rest could not clearly articulate their answer. The general conclusion has not been made, but it is obvious in numbers as well - a negative image as a whole. The vastness of the negative epithets is striking: “make ends meet”, “there is no home, wanders around military garrisons”, “being an officer is not prestigious, there is no respect in society”, “everyone laughs at the army”, “humiliated to the limit”, “out of despair” getting drunk, ”“ a person who doesn’t know what will happen tomorrow, ”“ they will sell everything, dissolve ”for money,“ aggressive, irritated ”,“ they are the ones who organize hazing ”,“ intellectually incompetently developed people ”...
As they say, nothing to add to this. It remains only to emphasize that junior officers are particularly affected by all the perturbations that occur in our days in the Armed Forces. This is the least protected part of the officer corps, although it is upon it that the whole burden of training personnel, organizing combat training and the daily life of subunits, maintaining discipline, and solving tasks in combat conditions lies. Not sustaining this burden and not receiving the necessary material and social benefits for their work, many junior officers prematurely break the contract for military service. Moreover, the current leadership of the Ministry of Defense is pushing them to that with their, to put it mildly, incomprehensible decisions. Take at least the fact that a significant number of university graduates in the past year were appointed to sergeant positions. The suspension of the recruitment of cadets to military schools is another evidence of this.
I would not want to believe in some kind of malicious intent, but I also do not have to agree with the statement by the deputy head of the Main Directorate of the Ministry of Defense Tamara Fraltsova that the decision is due to an overabundance of officers and the lack of appropriate posts in the Armed Forces. After all, this contradicts what senior officials of the military department said a year ago. Then, proving the need to reduce the number of officers, they drew inverted pyramids at all corners and showed that we had a lot of senior officers, but there were not enough younger ones. But the suspension of recruitment, even for several years, leads to the fact that there will be even fewer junior officers, and in the end they will be in the army and navy not at all. And since they are gone, then where will the senior officers, generals and admirals come from?
If there really is a surplus of officers, then why shouldn't this problem be approached diligently, in a state way? Not to dismiss officers, not to throw them out of the gate, as is being done today, but to transfer them to other power structures that numerically outnumber the Armed Forces and, at the same time, lack command personnel. By the way, they did not stop enrollment in their educational institutions and even sent cadets to higher education institutions of the Ministry of Defense.
We can confidently say that, in deciding to suspend the recruitment of cadets, the current managers from the defense did not think, and what about those young men who from childhood wanted to become officers? With graduates of the Suvorov and Nakhimov schools, which, according to the regulations, are guaranteed the possibility of continuing their studies at military colleges? They were also shown a turnaround from the gate, although many of them could become officers, as they say, by vocation, followers of officer dynasties, those whom, according to popular wisdom, are called “military bone”. And now the current leadership of the Ministry of Defense, in fact, “spit” this bone.
In fairness, it should be noted that the collapse and destruction of military education in the country began even before the arrival of Anatoly Serdyukov’s team at the Ministry of Defense, when 2005 was closed in 78 from higher military schools. The current military leadership, which breaks everything through the knee, has decided to bring the destruction of military education to its logical conclusion.
Outwardly, it is clothed in a very acceptable form - once the Armed Forces are being reduced, higher educational institutions should also be reduced. With this, of course, one cannot but agree. Until recently, the military education system of the power ministries and departments included about one hundred military schools. They trained specialists in 900 military occupational specialties. At the same time, the network of military schools of the Ministry of Defense was the largest. Naturally, the situation prompted the need to optimize the military education system.
The leadership of the Ministry of Defense was supposed to invite independent experts, reputable military scientists, military leaders and jointly develop a program to optimize military education. Especially since for several years the Academy of Military Sciences has been specially engaged in this, conducted scientific and practical conferences on it and repeatedly offered its proposals to the Ministry of Defense. The Club of Warlords did the same. However, no one listened to their opinion, but they themselves, unfortunately, did not have enough perseverance and firmness in communicating their position to the country's leadership and the general public. The meeting of the Minister of Defense and the main inspectors held on October 22 on October 2010 reaffirmed this, since it was not a constructive discussion, but A. Serdyukov's monologue.
Accustomed to working behind the scenes, without involving the general public in the discussion, the current leadership of the Ministry of Defense also came in regards to “giving a new look” to the military education system. It simply announced that by the year 2013 it intends to have 10 strategic universities, including three military educational and scientific centers, six military academies and one military university. It is planned that the structure of the remaining universities will also include specialized research organizations, educational institutions of primary and secondary vocational education, Suvorov and Nakhimov schools, as well as cadet corps.
It is not difficult for any professional to notice that under the “new look” lies the Western model of military education. And more American. We will not find out whether it is good or bad. But, we note, in the United States, the officer training system is built entirely on other realities. Yes, in the US military there are only three specific schools — for ground forces in West Point, the Navy in Annapolis and the Air Force in Colorado Springs. But they prepare only 20 percent of the officer corps, and 80 percent are supplied by civilian universities. Moreover, the principle of choosing a further officer service for graduates of civilian universities is purely voluntary. Nevertheless, many of them, after unlearning for a fee, make this choice, because in the United States the attitude to the armed forces is completely different from ours. There, without serving in the army, it is very difficult to make your way up the career ladder, even along the civil path.
In our country, the main recruiter for domestic institutes and universities is not their material and technical base and faculty, but the opportunity to “zakosit” from military service. And even more so when studying is paid. By the way, unlike their foreign colleagues, who believe that if he paid, he should receive the relevant knowledge, Russian students study according to the principle “I paid, so leave me alone”. And it is unlikely that they voluntarily decide to become officers. Yes, and the army does not need such officers.
The sharp decline in higher education institutions, including the unique, training specialists of the most important strategic areas, in fact means that the national military school will be destroyed, which for centuries has trained highly professional military leaders and commanders who have brought many victories to the Motherland.
Trying to reassure public opinion, the State Secretary - Deputy Defense Minister N. Pankov declares that the listeners and cadets have no particular problems. They will either complete their studies at the university they have entered, or will be transferred to continue their studies in a similar specialty to another military school. Teachers, however, who expressed a desire to continue teaching, will be able to work in enlarged universities. All other officers will be offered other military positions or given the opportunity for dismissal with the provision of all social benefits and guarantees established by law. However, this is hard to believe, given the current practice. After all, the rates, titles, degrees of teachers depend on the number of cadets. And if so, even the suspension of enrollment in universities will lead to cuts in these rates, which, in turn, will cause an outflow of the most qualified personnel from the military education system who can find work in civilian universities. Ultimately, this will lead to the collapse of the entire system of military education, since the scientific school will be lost, and it will take decades to restore.
The second wave of the outflow of the faculty should be expected because of the announced consolidation of universities and their transfer to other cities, which is associated with a deterioration, despite assurances from "reformers", the level and quality of life. It is not a secret for anybody that the overwhelming number of generals, admirals and officers who graduated from military service within the walls of higher educational institutions remained there in civilian positions and were for many years mentors to the teachers who replaced them. They passed on their experience to them, served as a kind of link between generations and were, I am not afraid of the pathos, the moral base of the educational institution. Of course, they will not move when the university is redeployed, which will also have a negative impact on his fate.
A vivid example of this is the transfer in 2005 of the year from Moscow to the Kostroma Military Academy of radiation, chemical and biological protection. As a result, the university suffered significant losses. Of the 25 doctors of sciences who worked in it at the time of the relocation, not one moved to Kostroma, and of the 187 candidates of sciences only 21. This means that it was not the academy that was redeployed, but only its sign, to maintain its image in Kostroma, local less qualified personnel were hastily recruited. According to some estimates, in the course of the redeployment of metropolitan military universities 90 — 95 percent of the faculty members will refuse to move to other cities to a new job.
Another example is associated with this academy. About a year ago, a decision was made to join the Tyumen and Nizhny Novgorod Higher Military Technical Command Schools and the Saratov Military Institute of Chemical and Biological Safety. And a couple of months later, Nizhny Novgorod FIRST, which is history leads from the 1-th military engineering school, created by the decree of Peter I in 1701, which marked the beginning of national education at the state level, was sent under the knife. And this is despite the fact that it prepares officers for engineering troops in four specialties: “Multi-purpose wheeled and tracked vehicles”, “Electric power supply”, “Civil and industrial construction”, “Radio engineering”.
Tyumen College is only one at a time: “Multi-purpose wheeled and tracked vehicles”, which are used by paratroopers. Moreover, Nizhny Novgorod residents train in three specialties 18 military personnel from foreign countries of the near and far abroad. In Siberia, they do not have any experience in training foreign troops and do not have the appropriate teaching staff. If the Ministry of Defense intends to continue their training, then it will have to redeploy the base of the Tyumen Front Office - 5 departments, build an educational building and dormitory, create an appropriate educational laboratory, training and field training base. In a penny it will be, it seems, no one thought.
The question is whether we will continue to train foreign military specialists? Indeed, in those universities where they studied, and this is 59 from the still existing 65 schools and academies, first they eliminated translators, and then the Russian language department. As a result, learning became almost impossible, as there was no simple understanding between teachers and students, and foreigners reached for Belarus, Kazakhstan and Ukraine, where they kept the old school. They say that when they reported it to the Minister of Defense, he simply waved his hand. But the training of foreign specialists is not even a departmental task, but a state one, since there are many things behind this: currency, the sale of military equipment, weapons, influence. It is known that many of those who studied with us, and still universities graduate from five to eight thousand foreign military cadres, have grown at home to great military leaders and even heads of state.
In the proposed program of reforming the military education system, in fact, there was no place for the Military Academy of the General Staff, which was called upon to train the highest operational and strategic element of command and control of the Armed Forces. This is confirmed by the statement of General of the Army N. Makarov that in the first year about 80 percent of training time will be devoted to the study of military discipline at the operational and strategic level, how to lead strategic groups and the Armed Forces, and 20 percent of the first year and the whole second The course “will study only those sciences and disciplines so that he can work skillfully in the Administration of the President of the Russian Federation and in the Government or head the subjects of the Russian Federation”. Training will be conducted in only two departments. It turns out that VAGSh graduates will be trained not for leadership of troops, but for bureaucratic work in the state apparatus? Interestingly, henceforth, the selection of students to the academy will, it seems, take place on an authoritarian basis, since in 2010 the candidates took the examinations, obviously, having no other business, the head of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces himself.
It is impossible not to see that the “arithmetic” merger of military educational institutions into research centers breaks the link between them and the troops. From now on, the commanders and staffs of the branches of the armed forces will not be able to form the very ideology of cadet training, develop and, most importantly, directly influence their training, as well as determine the quantitative and qualitative composition of the trainees. An example is the famous and unique Ryazan Higher Military Air Command School, which has been turned into a branch of the Combined Arms Academy. Now, in order to visit the school, the commander of the airborne forces must ask for permission from the head of the academy and coordinate his work plan with him !!!
The creation of three military educational and scientific centers is not yet supported by material resources. And this is despite the fact that the most complicated laboratory base of the schools and academies included in them, as a rule, cannot be dismantled and transported. It is almost impossible to re-create it because of the enormous costs and the disappearance of the factories at which it was previously produced. The expansion of existing and construction of new educational and laboratory buildings, barracks and hostels for students, houses for teachers and support staff of “super academies” will cost a huge amount that the Russian budget simply will not pull. Only the creation of a new naval training complex in Kronstadt is estimated to be at least 100 billion rubles. In fact, it will be, as always, in 2 — 3 times more expensive - up to a quarter of a trillion rubles.
What is most interesting is that the leadership of the Ministry of Defense claims that it will carry out the transformation of the military education system without additional appropriations and does not lay down expenses in its budget. Meanwhile, apparently, it is the receipt of “additional allocations” that is the main goal of “giving a new look to the Russian army”. The point is that during this process, about 40 thousands of military facilities with corresponding buildings, infrastructure and territories are expected to be released. Often, especially in the case of military schools and academies, these facilities are located in Moscow, St. Petersburg and major regional centers. The cost of these objects is estimated at several trillion rubles, which is several times the largest annual military budget of Russia. The sale of objects involved in the military itself.
As for the declared readiness of the Ministry of Defense to involve civilian higher education institutions in the training of officers, there are also “stones” here. In particular, it is proposed to introduce the division of civil institutions and universities in relation to service in the Armed Forces into three categories. Graduates of the so-called "elite" institutions of higher education (referred to the first grade) at the end of the military department will be immediately sent to the reserve. This list includes 12 metropolitan, five St. Petersburg universities, two higher educational institutions from Kazan and Novosibirsk, and one educational institution in 14 cities of Russia. The second category includes 33 educational institutions, when entering into which young people will enter into a contract with the Ministry of Defense. The contract will provide them with an increased scholarship in the period of study, which exceeds the federal one five times, and service in officer positions for at least three years. Upon termination of the contract from the graduate will require the return of the scholarship in full. Graduates of other universities are classified as third grade. They will be recruited and serve in the army in the rank and file.
In fact, we are talking about the creation and introduction (albeit behind the scenes) of a kind of property qualification. Since he comes from a rural area, even if he is gifted and talented, but has no means (it is simply not realistic to enroll in a Moscow or St. Petersburg university with a peripheral education, even using the privileges of the Unified State Exam, without a bribe). In the absence of abilities, urban youths have the opportunity either to avoid conscription altogether, or, having received an education in an elite university, immediately, without serving a single day, go to the reserve. The army at the same time turns into a "student - workers 'and peasants'" army.
There is no need to emphasize that officers are the backbone on which any army rests. Let me remind you: after the First World War, Germany was forbidden to have its own armed forces. However, the country retained the officer corps and based on it very quickly created the Wehrmacht. It is clear that the implementation of the proposed program of reforming the military education system leads to the final elimination of the Russian armed forces and will be a crushing blow to our defense capability.
At the same time, it seems that “the renewal of the image of military education” only covers the interests of national security. In fact, behind all this is not so much the absence of plans and designs, as the inability and unwillingness to carry them out as painlessly as possible for the country and its citizens. And is it possible to call the current defense managers reformers? After all, any reform implies an evolutionary path of development, and their hands itch to destroy everything to the ground.
Only people who sincerely believe in their own infallibility can, with such perseverance, ruthlessly destroy everything and everyone, not created by them and built.
So without the officers remain
- Boris USVYATSOV, Professor
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