The events in Ukraine and around it became the object of close attention of the Kazakh public. Today, General Aitkali Gusmanovich Iengulov decided to express his vision of what is happening through the prism of the problems of the Kazakh army. And he does it in a military manner, frankly and rather impartially..
- Events in Ukraine, among other things, raised issues such as the combat readiness of the army, the moral and moral character of a state defender and, in general, the fulfillment of the tasks facing the armed forces of any state.
What concerns me as a professional soldier and general in the first place? The events in Ukraine clearly showed what serious shortcomings exist in the combat and moral and psychological training of her army. She was demoralized and dysfunctional. Especially in the Crimea. Almost almost en masse, the Ukrainian military transferred to the Russian side. But they all took the oath of allegiance to Ukraine. Watching this, I come to this conclusion. First of all, all the shortcomings, all the available decay manifested incapacity army lie in the lack of talent of its leadership. The events in Ukraine and in the Crimea also concern us, and therefore we must draw the appropriate conclusions from them.
A corrupt army with a low moral appearance cannot be a protector of the state. The leadership of such an army no moral or legal right to command and to give adequate time to the required orders and instructions. Their teams will simply be denied by the middle and lower level, which bears the main burden in any armed conflict.
I thought: who is to blame? And I come to this sad conclusion: first of all, the generals are guilty. After all, since the brigade and above, in the armed forces led by generals. Watching the sad picture of what is happening with the Ukrainian army, one involuntarily recalls the old and time-tested wisdom: the fools learn from their mistakes, and the smart ones learn from others. Therefore, our Kazakh army needs to learn the most important lessons from the mistakes of others. Can our army, in the event of such a seemingly private conflict, ensure the security of its state? But today, the state through ordinary taxpayers allocates a lot of money to the needs of the Kazakh army and has the right to expect that it will be able to ensure the integrity and inviolability of our borders.
Yes, a balanced and wise foreign policy pursued by our president, Nursultan Nazarbayev, seems to exclude any prerequisites for any hypothetical conflict in Kazakhstan due to territorial disputes with such large and strong neighbors as China and Russia. Nevertheless, the current situation shows that those guarantees under international agreements, which at one time were given by the largest states of the world, at some point simply do not work. It is enough to recall that the same Budapest memorandum, according to which Ukraine voluntarily refused the third nuclear potential in the world, ended up with a single referendum in the Crimea. We understand that such referendums, if desired, and appropriate financial support can be organized anywhere. But there is the Constitution of the state, and its provisions shall be inviolable for all citizens, regardless of political, ethnic, linguistic and other preferences.
Therefore, in today's conditions, the combat readiness of the army and its ability to protect the frontiers of our state become for all military personnel, especially those who were at the forefront of building the armed forces of independent Kazakhstan, the meaning of all life. Will our army be able to fulfill the tasks that our commander-in-chief has set for us?
Looking back, yet again, that for all the shortcomings in the military and moral and ethical responsibility of preparing the army generals. Many things depend on the moral character of the generals, on their observance of the code of honor. During 35 years of personnel service (and I passed it in the Northern, Central Group of Forces, in the GSVG, as an advisor in the armies of other states), I had to meet examples of compliance with the highest criteria for officer conscience and honor, loyalty to the oath. As such, I will call Sagadat Kozhakhmetovich Nurmagambetov and Peter Georgievich Lushev, with whom I had to cross in different periods of my army life. These were generals in the true sense of the word, from which it was possible to take an example in everything.
And against such a background, watching some negative processes in my own Kazakhstani Ministry of Defense, I feel a sense of burning shame. Is the third Vice-Minister for armaments and equipment was under arrest, and his two predecessors serving sentences for their unseemly deeds. The list can be supplemented with the names of several directors of departments of the Ministry of Defense, and they are all generals! What kind of honor a general's uniform as possible after this to talk ?! To whom can officers of the Kazakh armed forces be equal? And with what examples should we educate the younger generations after such a discredit of the title of “general”? The persistent feeling that many officers of the Kazakh army, having reached this rank, could not comprehend the depth of greatness and responsibility of this rank, does not leave me. First of all, to the people, to society, to the state.
Let's ask ourselves the question: why has this become possible? The main reason for such a negative state of affairs I see flaws and shortcomings in the selection and appointment to the general's office. Now the order of things subject to criticism sweeping the Soviet period, and after the Soviet army, whoever and whatever spoke, was the strongest in the world. And the selection in it for general positions was not just strict, but superstrong. Obligatory condition was the observance of the principle of passing through all the steps of commanding work: a platoon commander, a company commander, a battalion commander-commander of a regiment. That is, the passage of the military unit was the most important condition in order to be appointed to the general's position. But even so, the title of general was not always assigned to such a post. Before that was the most thorough selection.
Having received this title, officers faithfully served their Fatherland. In most cases up to 60 years. Firstly, because it was the strictest selection. And secondly, for the people who have undergone such a selection, all the conditions were created so that each of them could fully give all their knowledge, skills and accumulated professional and life experience. What, unfortunately, today is not observed. Recruitment for the rank of general is extremely lightweight, the title is often assigned hastily, followed by no less hasty dismissal or conviction under the article for the offenses committed.
At the same time, I can give you dozens of examples from Kazakhstan practice, when the generals were dismissed until 50-year-olds. And you know, among them were many intelligent officers. But opportunists that nothing good and useful for the army did not remain on the positions and it is "successfully" dosluzhivayut to the maximum age. So is it worth it after such a superficial personnel approach to be surprised at the devaluation of the general's rank?
Again, for comparison, I will give the following example. Over the 20 years of the existence of the Central Asian Military District, not a single general was prosecuted under the Criminal Code. And for a little 20 stories Kazakh Armed Forces sent several deputy defense ministers to prison. That's what it would cost us all to think. Especially those involved in the selection of personnel, who decide on the assignment of titles and appointment to senior positions, including the first head of the defense department. After all, it is no secret that behind each such appointment there are quite specific people who selected, recommended, prepared documents, and, perhaps, lobbied certain candidates. Have any of them been responsible for such personnel selection? Strongly doubt.
The main abscess, which is eating away at our army, is corruption. What can you say, if the deputy ministers of defense and heads of departments of the Ministry of Defense find themselves in the dock for corruption? And this is not an isolated case, but almost a trend. I am deeply convinced that commerce from the army must be removed once and for all. I spoke openly about this in 1998 year. When General S.Nurmagambetov left the army, commercialization immediately began in it, and I was one of the most ardent opponents of this. I said and said: "Commerce in the army will lead to corruption, and corruption will corrode the army. The army will become overcrowded. People who are infected with the bacilli of commerce do not need combat training. They need profit." There were cases when he openly opposed the unjustified write-off of military equipment and refused to sign his name as a member of the MoD collegium. I believed and believe that the issues of material support should be transferred to civil structures, and the army services should be left with the right to order and purchase. All forces of the defense department should be sent to the combat training of the army and raising the moral and ethical level of the personnel.
What can explain the deplorable state of the Ukrainian army? Only by the fact that the state structures responsible for it simply forgot about its existence. A poorly secured, morally decomposed army cannot fulfill the tasks assigned to it. This is an axiom. And on the contrary, in the Russian army in recent years, the closest attention was paid to the issues of combat training, logistics, psychological preparation, which, in fact, was reflected during the Ukrainian crisis.
A recent audit of the Accounts Chamber of how budget funds allocated to the armed forces of Kazakhstan are spent, revealed a lot of shortcomings. But the revealed abuses, misuse of funds and other negative things have not been the subject of thorough investigation by either the parliament or the public. But we are talking about the money of ordinary taxpayers, which in the event of force majeure circumstances, the army will have to protect. Has anyone thought that all the revealed defects and abuses are related to certain decisions of the generals of our army? And here there is another important aspect of the problem under consideration. All these decisions reflect the moral character of quite specific generals.
I often object: they say, is it really necessary for a future general to go through the command of a platoon, a company? So, I am absolutely convinced: whoever did not command a platoon, company, battalion, regiment, simply does not have any moral right to command the army, lead the military district, to be the head of the MO department. Those who do not know and do not understand banal everyday life and the daily routine of military life, who just came from the civil service and are trying to change something in the army without understanding its specifics, stand up for this.
Also, I do not understand how you can come from the system of internal affairs bodies and become deputy minister of defense? And how can one explain the facts, when in some five or six years a senior lieutenant becomes a colonel? What can after this demand from such an army? Where are the structures that should track such things? Why do people with rear or technical services get into key positions, or simply from military registration and enlistment offices? At the same time, army officers who commanded platoons, companies, battalions and regiments were subordinate to the above-named public. Another word and hard to pick up. A real officer for grayness is like a bone in a throat. Because against its background, the limitations and professional unsuitability of a person without a military "bone" immediately strike the eye.
If we carry out a qualitative analysis of the leadership of the Defense Ministry, starting with the minister himself and his deputies, then we can say that there are only one or two professional military men, and the rest are either civilian or come from other departments. This is a very disturbing factor for our army, which can not but affect both the combat training and the moral and psychological state of the personnel. And what can we expect or demand from a general who does not have a proper understanding of his functional duties?
If you do not intervene in the situation, then it is precisely such personnel that can make up the majority of the modern generals of the Kazakh army. Is it any wonder after this the metamorphosis occurring with the moral character of the highest officers? Margaret Thatcher owns the phrase: "In order to restore order in the state and get rid of corruption, you need to have 15 honest top officials." It seems to me that we need all 5-6 senior military officials to end bribery in the army. But we must begin with the first head of the MO, his deputies and directors of departments. Well, you may need another ten-another person. Only in this way can we eliminate corruption in the army. And if this is not done, then the generals are to blame for this. All responsibility for the decomposition of the army falls entirely on him. There can be no doubt about it.
Therefore, I am very upset and ashamed when I observe what is happening in our army. I am even more ashamed that there are such, if I may say so, generals in our army. The army should be led by statesmen, not "merchants". Where there is commerce, fertile soil is created for acquisitiveness and bribery. If a person steals in the army, he steals from a soldier. He is not just a thief, he undermines the combat readiness of the army, and consequently, the national security of the country.
In this regard, questions arise to the relevant structures, which are designed to prevent and eradicate abuses in the armed forces, starting with representatives of the National Security Committee and the supervising financial services. And where is the counterintelligence service looking? No one denies their work, but apparently it is not enough. There is still an inspection of the defense department. Maybe we should take it out of the subordination of the leaders of the Defense Ministry and directly subordinate it to the commander in chief? Or at least the head of the presidential administration.
Least I would like readers to get the impression that there are no worthy generals in our army. By no means. Thank God, our land has not yet become scanty with talents. With many of them I had the honor to serve and share the difficulties of army life. This is General A.S. Ryabtsev, who at the dawn of our independence was the First Deputy Minister of Defense of the Republic of Kazakhstan, General B.Ye. Yertaev, General U. B. Yelamanov, General N.A. Zholamanov, General B. B. Zhanasayev, General V. .V.Tuzikov and many others who have passed all the steps of the army hierarchy. They were distinguished and distinguished by high professionalism, unswerving adherence to the principles of human conscience and officer honor.
However, with great regret, I have to admit that we are losing the moral authority of the title of “general” and what is commonly called general honor. And how to say otherwise, if the score of convicted and condemned generals will soon go to dozens? I can assure you that I am not alone in my opinion. The Council of Generals of Kazakhstan is very concerned about the emerging trend. At the same time, such a statement of the question concerns not only the army department, but also other security agencies. How many senior officers of the National Security Committee were implicated in the Horgos case? Doesn't the shadow fall on the officers of the financial police? The role of representatives of other law enforcement agencies in this matter is also questionable.
A year and a half ago, during the crash, the leadership of Kazakhstani border guards was tragically killed. I consider it necessary to say that responsibility for this tragedy also falls on today's domestic generals. Instead of organizing the process of repairing military equipment with high quality and on time, the responsible officers were engaged in registration and falsification. It would not be an exaggeration to say that blood remained in the hands of some generals. In this matter, too, it is time to restore order.
If tomorrow a military conflict occurs, it may happen that pity for one villain will lead to the death of tens and hundreds of innocent people. Criminal acts of one corrupt scoundrel can jeopardize the combat capability of entire regiments, and maybe even divisions. It is then that we will see the real look of our current generals. Because without them nothing is done in the army. And because the demand must begin with the generals. The rest are just performers.
Only in this way can we bring genuine order to the armed forces and ensure the proper level of their combat readiness.
I have the honor!