The role of violence in the world stories has always been and remains exceptionally high. This is due to the underlying factors embedded in human nature, which have not yet been fully investigated. Mikhail Engelhardt, author of the famous book Progress as the Evolution of Cruelty, published at the end of the 19th century, wrote: “… cruelty is a specific, common, mass trait of humanity, a biological property of a species.” Therefore, at all stages of its evolution, humanity has given priority to the production of means of violence. It was here that embodied all the best achievements of human genius.
During the epochs of the Paleolithic and Neolithic, the instruments of violence gradually improved. For many millennia, the quality level of the means of warfare was determined by the virtuosity of using stone-chippers, giving the tools the necessary form by separating part of the mass from the uterine stone - the nucleus.
Having mastered the means of making fire, mankind gradually mastered the skills of smelting metal, first copper and bronze, and then iron. A significant number of new samples of manual cold weapons: swords, sabers, maces, daggers, knives, spears, darts, battle axes of various forms.
These means of warfare easily hit people and could instantly inflict injuries incompatible with life. As a result, protective armament appears: shields, helmets, torso coating, arms and legs, made of thick leather, and then of metal. Along with this, the first fortifications and entire fortified towns emerge, with protective walls, moats and other fortifications. For the capture of such cities, the best minds of mankind invented ramming, ballista, catapults, mobile towers and other types of engineering weapons. On the battlefields in large numbers, combat cavalry began to be used, which significantly increased the cost of the war by acquiring and maintaining a horse-force, equipping it with appropriate devices for the convenience of the rider and the conduct of the battle. The cost of war has increased further.
During the siege of Troy in 1280 BC, the Greeks actively used various battering machines, bronze shells, helmets, greaves to protect their feet, swords, axes, bows, spears, darts. The Romans used the same weapons as the Greeks, but their shells were leather, covered with bronze belts, and later with iron plates. Noble people covered such scales with the whole body.
Thus, at the earliest stages of the development of human civilization, a clear trend emerged, indicating a steady increase in the costs of producing means of warfare, along with a rapid increase in their types. This in turn increased the cost of the war as a whole.
Specialists were able to calculate that in 54 BC, every killed enemy soldier cost Caesar 75 cents. In 869, the annual salary and ration of the 70-thousandth mercenary army of the Baghdad Caliphate was two million gold denarii, which was the sum of the two-year state tax of the caliphate.
In the era of cold arms, its rather slow, but steady improvement took place, as well as defensive weapons developed. In the Middle Ages, Oriental peoples began to wear shirts made of iron rings, known as chain mail, on a leather jacket, and in the West, noble knights began to cover the body with forged steel shells, helmets, handcuffs and greaves, decorated with various inlays. The armor and weaponry of the knight cost a fortune.
The emergence of firearms made a revolution in military affairs. In accordance with its complexity, the price also increased, which sharply increased the cost of the war. In Germany, in 1657, one soldier cost 264 marks, in 1786, 300, in 1870, 880, and in 1910, 1265 marks.
The most expensive military equipment has been and remains warships, which were the most complex set of devices, components and mechanisms. When creating the first Russian military fleet - At the end of the 20th century, Azovsky spent more than 1350 thousand iron nails, 1400 pieces of canvas canvas, 1500-200 oak and pine trunks, up to 50 guns and up to 70 guns for the construction of one ship. At the beginning of the XVIII century, the price of a warship was huge at that time - 80-XNUMX thousand rubles.
Accordingly, the total cost of hostilities also grew. During the Northern War (1700 – 1721) the cost for the year of hostilities was 3,8 million rubles in gold. During the Russian-Turkish wars 70 – 80-ies of the XVIII century, one year of the war cost 9,5 a million rubles. During the wars with Napoleon, the cost of a year of war increased to 80 million rubles. In the Eastern wars, which led Russia in the XIX century, the cost of one year of war amounted to 190 million rubles. During the Russian-Turkish war of 1877 – 1878, the year of military operations cost 450 million rubles. In the Russo-Japanese War, this figure was 1 664 242 225 rubles.
Each killed enemy soldier cost Napoleon three thousand dollars in 1800. During World War I, each killed fighter cost as much as a thousand dollars in 21, and during World War II, 200 thousand dollars. Thus, compared with the wars of Caesar, this figure has increased hundreds of thousands of times.
During the period of the Russo-Japanese war, Russia was faced with a new phenomenon, when state funds were not enough to cover the costs of war. During the two war years, not only the entire free cash of the State Treasury was spent, but by the beginning of 1906, there was a deficit in 157 990 820 rubles. For the first time, the Russian government was forced to resort to the issue of banknotes. This is evidenced in particular by the fact that in the first half of 1906, the government took 255 million rubles out of circulation.
In the wars of the late XIX - early XX century, various means of communication began to be actively used: telegraph, telephone, radio. This required new and significant costs.
XX century world ruinous battles
At the beginning of the 20th century, 19 of the European states contained in peacetime armed forces totaling 4 million 300 thousand people. In wartime, their number could be increased to 21 million 500 thousand people. The total expenditure on the military reached 20 billion 868 million rubles. Each soldier cost in the year from 207 rubles in Bulgaria to 1067 rubles in England. In Russia, a soldier cost the treasury 369 rubles a year. The cost of maintaining the army per capita was in Turkey - 2 rubles 70 kopecks, in France - 10 rubles 20 kopecks, in Russia - 3 rubles 40 kopecks.
A sharp jump in the cost of the war occurred during the First World War. Every year, Russia's participation in this war cost her 12 billion rubles in gold. Thus, only in 200 years, from the beginning of the 18th to the beginning of the 20th century, the cost of the war increased more than three thousand times. The figure is truly gigantic and speaks for itself.
During World War I, Germany spent about one billion marks a month on fighting. For all the warring powers every month of the war cost about 2,5 billion rubles. According to calculations of the Minister of Finance of Great Britain Lloyd George, the year of war for three great powers - Russia, England and France cost 20 billion rubles. It is extremely difficult to obtain such amounts, since they exceed the capabilities of the state’s gold reserves and the size of the issue rights of banks. Such expenses have become beyond the power of even the most powerful industrialized world powers.
Already at the very beginning of the First World War, Russia and other countries were forced to make substantial money issues and large loans. Before 1 January 1915, the Russian government spent 3 a billion 20 million rubles for military needs. The calculations of specialists showed that one day of hostilities cost the Russian economy 14 million rubles, while only 1 / 10 funds were covered by the estimated budget, and the remaining 9 / 10 were repaid by various government loans. Thus, the resources of the Russian economy were clearly insufficient for a lengthy war of this scale, and the government did not decide to take emergency measures.
In fact, only Britain managed to do without emissions, since the war affected its economy least of all. In addition, in this country it has historically been the custom to cover a significant part of military spending with taxes.
After World War I, the trend towards a steadily rising cost of military operations continued to increase. The price of one shot from the 76-mm field gun depending on the plant (state or private) and the type of ammunition ranged from 20 to 30 rubles, and the anti-aircraft gun during the First World War - 31 rubles. For comparison: a three-line Mosin rifle and a shot from an 76-mm field gun cost the same. However, it should be emphasized that with the increase in the caliber of ammunition, its price increased exponentially. During the First World War, the Germans evaluated a shot from a light 75-mm field gun in 25 marks, while from 280-mm - already 10 thousands of marks.
The number of weapons, military equipment and other military products involved in the armed struggle has grown immeasurably. The main countries participating in the First World War produced 180 thousand aircraft, 150 thousand artillery pieces, over one million machine guns, one billion shells, about 35 billion rounds and over nine thousand over the entire period of the war tanks.
During the Second World War, a similar amount of weapons produced a little more than one year. Fundamentally new types of weapons appeared, such as, for example, reactive and guided missile weapons, the complexity and cost of which were enormous. So, only for the creation of missile weapons, Germany spent funds equivalent to the cost of 10 thousands of tanks. Throughout the war, German industry produced 55 thousands of tanks.
The budget expenditures associated with meeting the non-production military-economic needs of all countries that participated in the First World War amounted to 208 billion dollars, and in the Second World War 1 trillion 117 billion dollars and thus increased 5,5 times. To this must be added the indirect economic costs, which amounted to billions of dollars in the First World 387, and four trillion dollars in the Second World and increased more than 10 times. The wars began to absorb the lion's share of the national income of states.
Cold War - the period of the best scientific achievements
After World War II entered a new phase of political development, called the Cold War. This period is characterized primarily by an unprecedented arms race. Almost the best scientific forces of the states worked in the interests of military production. All the major scientific achievements found their use in the military field.
Prices for military products began to grow even faster than before World War II. For example, if during the war years the fighter cost 200 thousands of marks, in the middle of 50's its price rose to two million marks, and in the middle of 60's it was estimated at five million marks. The price of an average WWII tank - 400 of thousands of brands, in the middle of 50's - already one million marks, and in the middle of 60's - 1 million 100 of thousands of marks. The B-52 strategic bomber cost eight million dollars, the Forrestal-type aircraft carrier 200 billions of dollars. Has become a huge price and modern ammunition. So, only one Grad rocket launcher can range from 600 to 1000 dollars. One rocket of the more powerful MLRS Smerch - already several tens of thousands of dollars.
To support one soldier who participated in the fighting, every day in 1914, six kilograms of various goods were required, during World War II - 20 kilograms, and during the Vietnam War - 90 kilograms. In the Afghan war, every soldier needed 200 kilograms of various supplies. During the Second World War, two or three people worked in the rear for one belligerent, but now eight or ten people are needed for this. This indicates that the military-technical equipment of the armed forces as a whole and of each soldier individually is greatly increasing.
The total cost of weapons and equipment of one American division during World War II was 19,5 million dollars, in 60-e it rose to 69,5 million. Thus, over 20 years, the cost of equipping a division has more than tripled. Therefore, already in the 60s, only two states were capable of leading the arms race on equal terms - the USSR and the USA.
Weapon costs today
Currently, a thousand assault rifles on the world arms market cost $ 30, one combat grenade costs eight dollars, and an artillery shot costs 130 dollars. One rocket MLRS "Smerch" - two thousand dollars, aviation volume explosion bomb - three thousand dollars. The cost of a modern Kalashnikov assault rifle is $ 59. After the last modernization in 2006, this machine (A-103) began to cost 386,22 dollars. Sometimes it is possible due to successful technical improvements to reduce the price. So, the cost of a domestic Daryal-type radar is 20 billion rubles, and for new high-readiness stations, three billion rubles. This was achieved through the manufacture of the station in container form. However, this is rather an exception and does not reflect the general trend.
The realities of modern warfare, in which many branches of the military are employed and very sophisticated military equipment, require numerous exercises, are very costly. One shot from a pistol costs 16 rubles, from a machine gun - about 30 rubles, from a tank gun - 32 thousands of rubles, the launch of a guided anti-tank missile - 160 thousands, one C-300 anti-aircraft missile - more than 30 millions. To this it is necessary to add the cost of fuel, the expenditure of a communication resource, food, and all types of provision and maintenance of personnel and equipment.
In order for the servicemen to have weapons, it is necessary to travel twice a week to the training ground and shoot at least 30 cartridges, which was the norm in the Soviet army. If at present these norms will be fulfilled only by one fifth of the 1,2-million army, it is necessary to allocate 22 billion rubles a year only for ammunition. Much more expensive are sea trips. In January, 2007, a campaign in the Mediterranean was carried out by an aircraft carrier group of Russian fleet ships led by the aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov. It was first held with live firing and cost about one billion rubles. A similar campaign of the American aircraft carrier group is estimated at one million dollars a day.
Hour training flight combat fighter MiG-29 costs three thousand dollars. Nuclear submarine cruise - in 100 thousands of dollars per day. The cost of the modern T-90 tank is 30 million rubles, the fighter is 35 million dollars. A strategic bomber costs 400 million dollars, the newest Russian missile Bulava - 50 million dollars, a nuclear submarine of the Kursk type - two billion dollars, and a nuclear aircraft carrier - five - six billion dollars. These are astronomical sums.
A distinctive feature of modern weapons, military equipment and ammunition is that they need disposal, which requires significant costs. Thus, the dismantlement of the Kursk nuclear submarine cost the state 228 million rubles, and another 58 million was allocated for related expenses.
US spending on the war in Iraq amounted to 5,6 billion dollars monthly or 186 million dollars per day. This exceeds the cost of the Vietnam War, when a month of fighting cost the Americans 5,1 a billion dollars, the entire Vietnamese campaign cost the US treasury 600 billions of dollars. For the first two years of the Iraq campaign, the American Congress approved expenditures in the amount of 294,4 billion and an additional 45,3 billion. In addition, the UK spent $ 6 billion on March 2005 for the same purpose. These funds would be enough to pay 3,9 a million teachers, or to fully fund the World Hunger Program for nine years, or 22 to fund the World AIDS Program.
The war against Iraq became an armed confrontation with the most extensive use of precision weapons. Only for 40 days of the Persian Gulf War in 1991, 282 high-precision Tomahawk cruise missiles were used. The launch of one such rocket costs a million dollars.
The most important feature of wars and armed conflicts at the end of the 20th century was the use of space assets in solving the tasks of military confrontation, and they are assigned the leading role in solving the tasks of combat support of troops. Thus, during military operations in the Persian Gulf zone in 1991, the orbital grouping of 86 spacecraft (29 intelligence, two missile attack warnings, 36 navigation, 17 communications, and two meteorological support) were involved by the coalition forces. The most significant role was played by the means of space reconnaissance. It was actually the first "space" war in the history of mankind.
In the campaign against Yugoslavia in 1999, NATO troops used around 120 satellites for various purposes, including 36 communications satellites, 35 reconnaissance, 27 navigation and 19 meteorological, which was almost twice the size of their use during the Gulf War. This sharply raised the cost of the war due to the fact that space technology costs a lot of money due to the enormous cost of manufacturing technology. Suffice it to say that 13 KB and scientific research institutes and 35 factories took part in the creation of the first Russian ballistic missile.
According to international organizations, in 1998, global spending on military targets reached 745 billions of dollars - an average of 125 dollars per person on Earth and 2,6 percent of global GNP. At the same time, the volume of production of the Russian military industrial complex made up only 10 percent of the production volume of 1991. Russia's military budget is less than 5,5 percent of the US military budget.
The arms race continues
At the beginning of the third millennium, the countries of the world continue to spend huge sums on weapons. Saudi Arabia allocates the most for these purposes, which annually spend on military needs 10,1 percent of GDP, Iraq - 9,7 percent, Israel - 8,7, Iran - 7,5, China - 5,3, Russia - 5, USA - three, France - 2,6, United Kingdom - 2,4, Japan - one percent.
In monetary terms, the absolute leader is the USA - 294,7 billion dollars, Russia - 58,8 billion, Japan - 44,4 billion, China - 42,1 billion, France - 34,3 billion, Great Britain - 33,9 billion, Saudi Arabia - 18,3 billion, Israel - 9,4 billion, Iran - 7,3 billion, Iraq - 1,5 billion dollars.
The total average cost per US Army soldier during the year is 169 750 dollars, while in the Russian army - only 11 812 dollars, that is, 15 times less. The cost of only combat equipment of one American soldier in 2011 year - 18 thousands of dollars and according to forecasts of specialists will increase to 70 – 80 thousands. Modern equipment includes more than 80 items weighing 34 kilograms, including a helmet - 235 dollars, a night vision device - 3,5 thousands of dollars, an automatic rifle M-4 - 1,3 thousands of dollars, etc.
Such small expenses for a soldier in Russia compared to the United States largely explain the deplorable results of the hostilities in Chechnya, when federal troops had aircraft and an overwhelming advantage in military equipment, nevertheless showed low combat qualities. In comparison with the irregular Chechen formations, our soldiers and even officers had a semi-partisan appearance, because they were not provided with the most elementary norms of allowance. In this regard, it is extremely necessary to take into account the human factor, which is of paramount importance in the operation of weapons.
In August, the 2008-th “five-day war” in South Ossetia cost Russia 12,5 a billion rubles, that is, on average, it cost 2,5 a billion rubles a day. During this war, there was a clear upward trend in the cost of various types of fuel and lubricants. For these purposes 1,2 was spent on a billion rubles a day. This trend was a reflection of the continuing saturation of the troops with various types of military equipment and its simultaneous complication.
The set of complex issues related to the theory and practice of the development of military art and production, has long required the systematization of knowledge in this field. Therefore, on the basis of organizational and scientific ideas, a new concept was formed, which was called the weapon theory, which became an integral part of military science. This complex scientific and technical issue is devoted to the work of a group of Russian scientists, published in 2005 year.
By the theory of armaments, the authors understand the purposeful unification of principles, ideas and methods summarizing the theoretical experience of substantiating plans for equipping armed forces with technical means of warfare, taking into account trends in the development of the productive forces of society and aimed at solving the problems of equipping armed forces with technical means in the near and distant future.
The authors of the book consider the study of the history of the development of weapons of warfare and the analysis of the mutual influence of their development and methods of combat use the first and most important task of the theory of weapons. It is hard to disagree with this definition. However, it should be recognized that many aspects of the centuries-old evolution of the means of warfare are still under development and are just beginning to stand out from military science into an independent scientific direction.