One of the most important elements of the military reform being carried out in Russia is its personnel component. The 20 trillions planned for the next decade for retrofitting the Russian Armed Forces with modern weapons and military equipment may prove to be a dead capital if there are no trained personnel to use them.
Decades of endless changes in the military school of Russia with all sharpness raise the problem of stability and sustainability of development. Each country has its own opportunities, development trends, constraints. Most of the problems of the national military school are inextricably linked with its history, is in close relationship with the state of social and spiritual, political and economic, international and military areas of society itself. The strengths and weaknesses of these areas affect the training of military personnel.
Patriotic military school
A number of stages stand out in the history of training Russian military personnel.
The first stage is from the beginning to the formation of a regular army at the beginning of the 18th century. Three periods can be distinguished in it: from the birth to the reforms of Ivan IV, from the reforms of Ivan IV to the reforms of Peter I, from the reforms of Peter I to the transformations of Catherine II.
Initially, military education was acquired privately, like any craft, from father to son. With the advent of firearms weapons began the transition to the regular army and state training. The Russian military school created by Peter I included the training of military personnel in guard regiments and special schools and was built on purely rational principles.
The second stage is characterized by the addition and development of the military education system from the second half of the 18th century to the beginning of the 20th century. It identifies four periods related to the rhythms of the political evolution of Russia: the reforms of Catherine II and the counter-reforms of Paul I, the reforms of Alexander I and the counter-reforms of Nicholas I, the reforms of Alexander II and the counter-reforms of Alexander III and the reforms of Nicholas II.
All reformers liberated the military school from petty care and regulation, the counterreformers, retaining their proven innovations, regulated them. Catherine II supplemented the rationalism of the military school with a humanitarian component. Pavel I modernized artillery training. It was a continuous development process:
encouraging private investment in the creation of military schools (the Bakhtin cadet corps in Orel);
The third stage in the history of military education is the Soviet, from 1917 to 1991 year. There are four periods in it: 1917 – 1941, 1941 – 1945, 1946 – 1964, 1965 – 1991. It is characterized by the solution of military educational problems in conditions of isolation from foreign military schools. The Soviet military school has gone through a complex and controversial way - from the denial of domestic experience to its restoration with severe ideological restrictions.
In 20 – 30-ies, the ban on the admission to military schools of children of educated classes, the priority of illiterate working-peasant children led to the profanation of military education: classes in special educational groups on primer, passing tests and examinations by one of the most successful students for the entire group etc.
These shortcomings were compensated by the rich military practice, the participation of cadets in hostilities, for example, with the Basmachi. The weakest technical troops were signalmen. The wretchedness of the country's connected infrastructure and radio communications led to wild cases in 1941, when the “horse-flying” and even the chain of fighters communication prevailed. Today, the fact of the dependence of victories in battles on the saturation of troops with communications means remains poorly meaningful: on all planes, radio stations appeared only in 1943, on each tank - in 1944.
The strengths of the Soviet military school of the postwar period included military professional training. The front-line officers gave the cadets what they needed in the war and in conditions close to combat. Unfortunately, in the years of stagnation, bureaucracy and window dressing destroyed these and other achievements. The schools were mechanically turned into higher ones, the number of officers with higher military education grew.
However, if the illiterate officers dismissed had no problems, for example, with charging batteries in the field, the engineers-engineers of the stagnant pores during the fighting in Afghanistan experienced serious difficulties with this. It is not by chance that the “invincible and legendary” during the collapse of the USSR could not stop the catastrophe.
The fourth stage in the history of military education is from the beginning of the 90s to the present. There are two periods in it: the 90s of the last century and the beginning of the twenty-first. It is notable for its attempts to comprehend the historical experience of training military personnel and the strongest influence of the Soviet military school, ignoring the opinion of science and imitations of reforms.
A serious problem in the twenty-first century was the lack of political decisions and transformations on a nationwide scale, ideological, institutional, organizational and technical sense. Without them, the domestic military school underwent not always successful improvisations.
For the modern Armed Forces, there is an acute problem of the quality of military personnel and their professionalism. This is due to the need for both a comprehensive modernization of weapons and military equipment and the training of highly skilled specialists who can be trusted to master new technology in the military. Let us recall the tragedy on the Nerpa submarine, the August 2008 combat operations with the shortage of operators for modern information technology, the problems of information support during the Vostok-2010 operational-strategic exercise (OSU), the requirements of network-centric and contactless wars formed by cyber commands.
The special commission established at the Ministry of Defense took into account several parameters. However, she ignored the main thing - the analysis of military threats. Judging by the subsequent organizational and staff decisions and the state defense order for 2013 year and near term, we are talking about training military personnel for the wars of the third generation. As if the past world war was obsolete immediately after its end.
During the regular hearings in the Public Chamber, the chairman of the Commission on National Security, Alexander Kanshin, asked the former head of the Department of Military Education of the Russian Defense Ministry, Ekaterina Priezezhevoy, a question: did you develop its scientifically based concept before proceeding with breaking the system of military schools? Her confused and lengthy response showed that instead of a well-thought-out concept, we have only some constantly corrected plan of anonymous authors, which basically boils down to a reduction of military universities.
It is not by chance that the former head of the General Staff, Army General Nikolai Makarov, frankly admitted at an officer’s meeting at one time: “We began the military reform without sufficient scientific justification.”
Instead of a scientific analysis of military threats and adequate preparation for their countering, we received dangerous impromptu, continuous radical corrections of permanent reform. As part of bringing the army to a new look, the organizational and technical basis of the Armed Forces was destroyed.
The Center for Operational Strategic Studies (DSP), which analyzed the threats, formed the requirements for their countermeasures, was abolished. Many military and scientific institutes were transferred from Moscow and St. Petersburg to the periphery, where the elderly scientific and teaching staff refused to go. Stopped the set of cadets in most military schools.
The principle was forgotten: nothing has been decided until everything has been decided, and initiatives have come down.
Then they decided that 150 thousands of officers should be, and they began to put pressure on the cadets, pushing them towards expulsion. A year later, it turned out that 220 had thousands of officers, and brought it about the inadmissibility of inattentive deductions.
First sergeants are appointed to officer positions, on the contrary - officers are appointed to sergeant positions.
Then they declare the priority of the means of aerospace defense (EKR) and the attacks and create the EKR Troops, then they decided to close the EKR Military Academy in Tver.
That leaves the military department of civilian universities without load, and the army without reserve officers, then declare the possibility of annual three-month breaks in the study of students to serve in the army and becoming thus reserve officers.
Then they declare the importance of attracting intellectually developed youth to the higher education institutions of the Moscow Region; then they decide that only young men with classes in a particular sport will be allowed to enter the university entrance examination.
Attempts by Dmitry Rogozin to create the Agency for Strategic Studies have not yet embodied in a working structure. There is no new information security doctrine. How far behind the military school from the pre-Soviet, can be seen from the example. Then graduates of military schools were released as follows: excellent students - in officer classes for the training of teachers and scientists, horoshist - in the troops, troechnikov - in the civil service. It was believed that from the troechnik in the troops there would be more harm than good, that there was too much risk of entrusting the lives of subordinates to the hands of such an officer. Now all graduates are taken to the troops, the loss in quality is obvious.
Curve led out
Now, the network of universities has adopted the final look, approved by the President of the Russian Federation in 2008. The total number of higher military educational institutions has been reduced to 17. The military education system has "dried up" to three - according to the number of types of the Armed Forces - training and research centers, 11 academies and three military universities. They include 25 affiliates of universities and three research organizations.
It was said that we are not going to abandon the training of lieutenants in civilian universities, but mostly humanities. However, how to deal with the military departments of civilian universities, equipped with modern models of military equipment, is not mentioned. The future officers trained on them have more powerful training than the cadets in what is needed for modern wars, in mathematical and exact sciences. They are not needed?
The statements on the improvement of the legislative support of the military school during the discussion of the law “On education in the Russian Federation” were consonant with what was proposed in the 80 years of the last century:
In 2012, the moratorium on admission of students to higher education institutions of the Ministry of Defense, introduced in 2009, ceased. Upon admission, the results of the USE, professional selection, as well as the delivery of standards for physical training are taken into account. For Suvorov and Nakhimov, additional preferences were canceled.
It seems that the authors of this novel have forgotten that Suvorov and Nakhimov military schools were created for the children of officers who died or became disabled while performing the duties of military service. Only on them the military department agreed to spend their money. High school, as you know, is funded by the Ministry of Education and Science. The fact that we have divorced a myriad of cadets, and even a boarding house of girls, is inappropriate spending of the military budget allocated to military education.
Functions not related to educational activities have been removed from universities. Food, bathing and laundry services, clinics and other services to ensure the daily activities of universities were transferred to outsourcing in full.
There is a lapping of these innovations, which, as usual, have not been fully thought through. In the course of OSU "Vostok-2010", outsourcers failed to provide power, accommodation and life for the army, which in the old manner solved its problems on its own. And the winter of 2010 – 2011's with a massive disease of military personnel showed the viciousness of a sharp reduction in personnel military medicine.
In some places, the potential of civilian higher education institutions, enterprises of the military-industrial complex, the main commands of the types, commands of the armed forces, etc. is used for teaching in military schools. However, in general, this is impossible due to the difference in the planning of classes. In a civilian university, one clerk from the dean's office, using the “Dean's Office” program, makes a schedule: an even and an odd “typical week” for the entire semester - and the teacher can be part-time in another university. In a military college, a dozen officers manually grind out a schedule for a semester, where there is no “model week.” The best teachers and experts from outside for system employment not to invite.
The transfer of the army from the mobilization to constant readiness, begun half a century later, could not but go with difficulty. The main problems are ideological. It is necessary to decide on the Soviet period of history, which took the lion’s share in the past century. If the communist experiment imposed on the country turned out to be self-reversing and led to indicators of the development of a hundred years ago with enormous demographic and geopolitical losses, then the price is worthless.
Further, education cannot be a “service industry”. It is not just production, but production of those who exploit the means of production. A military school is unacceptable - a structure that produces to subordinate personnel officers - a distribution structure. Depending on the status of the institution, its funding is located, and patching holes in military construction has always been taken at the expense of military education. The lower the status of a military school, the more defenseless its budget.
In the context of genuine modernization and a sharp increase in the technical equipment of the Armed Forces, the need for professional staff, there is a need for a substantial, priority increase in funding for the military school. Professional payment and professional attitude to the service will erase the boundaries between the draft and contract armies, make it unprofitable to have bloated staffs, push for higher productivity, make modernization development in practice, and not in reports.
Recently, at the highest level, many correct words have been said about the importance of tradition. First there is the word. The reconstruction of the Preobrazhensky and Semenovsky regiments, the cradles of the Russian military school, is an important step towards the revival of glorious traditions.