Especially often Chechens staged provocations on the outskirts of Kizlyar, in the area of the Copay hydroelectric complex. The day before I appeared at the outpost that covered the waterworks, she was subjected to a massive mortar strike. The answer was adequate. For Chechens, in addition to artillery, the Russian spinner worked. And graduates of the Khattab sabotage schools, who passed the exams at the border of Chechnya and Dagestan, rolled back into the depths of their territory to lick their wounds.
At the outpost, where the officers and fighters of the internal troops kept their defense, there was no panic. The military youth that repelled the attack was full of calmness and dignity that appear in the person who gained the victory in battle.
At the outpost of the “Kopai hydroelectric complex” I immediately noticed the colonel with a daring laugh in smart, blue eyes, light in movement, broad-shouldered, of medium height. He leisurely, in a commanding manner, meticulously talked with officers and soldiers, without writing anything down, remembering everything. He spoke simply, asked questions competently. He behaved freely, like a senior comrade, commander-dad, to whom you can always ask for advice, help and get it without delay and complaints.
At that time I did not know that, where this senior Muscovite officer appeared, serious military operations always took place.
So, far from Moscow, at the outpost, which suffered casualties, I met a man who would storm Grozny in the second Chechen campaign, commanding the Vostok grouping, and would hoist the Russian flag over the suffering Minth Square. For the skillful, highly professional leadership of the units and the courage and heroism shown at the same time, Colonel Kukarin Yevgeny Viktorovich will be awarded the title Hero of the Russian Federation. The Hero of the Hero will be entrusted to him in the Kremlin by the Supreme Commander, President of the Russian Federation, Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin.
On another occasion, we met when Colonel E. V. Kukarin was already at the post of deputy commander of the Lynx special police unit GUBOP SCM of the Ministry of the Interior of the Russian Federation. His experience gained during the years of military service and in the internal troops was needed in a new direction - in pinpoint strikes on organized crime and terrorism.
This senior officer can keep state secrets. Only seven years after our first meeting on the outskirts of Kizlyar, I learned that the appearance of Yevgeny Kukarin at the outpost at the Kopaysky hydroelectric complex was a preparation for the operation, which caused serious damage to the Chechen militants.
It was Evgeny Viktorovich who planned the operation to destroy the Chechen customs post in the area of the Dagestan village of Pervomaiskoye. This post was a den of terrorists who committed sabotage exits to the adjacent Dagestan,
Colonel E. V. Kukarin began to fight in the 1999 year in the north of Dagestan, participated in the reflection of Basayev's units in Rakhat, Ansalt and Botlikh. The pinnacle of his commanding success was the victorious assault on Grozny.
When I saw on Central Television how this dense, Suvorov spirit and height of a colonel raised the Russian flag over liberated Grozny, I got excited, proud for this man who loves life, the winner of the enemies of the Fatherland, and Vasiliy Terkin in a sense of humor.
At our last meeting, it seemed to me that the Star of the Hero of Russia made Kukarin even easier, more accessible, relaxed him as a person, sharpening his impressions of war and life.
On holidays, when Russia is having fun, having a rest, the country's power structures are on strengthening, especially the special forces of the FSB, the Interior Ministry and the army.
On one of these days, after a morning divorce, Colonel Yevgeny Viktorovich Kukarin and I met in his working room of the deputy commander of the Special Forces of the Special Forces "Lynx". Photographs hung on the walls, not fully reflecting the combat path of the owner of the cabinet. Here is a photo of two Russian tankslined on a mountain Chechen road. Sobrovtsy of Norilsk - severe-looking officers in special equipment, with machine guns and sniper rifles were photographed against the backdrop of the ruins of Grozny, and their respectful appeal to the commander of the Vostok group was easily read at the bottom of the photo.
On the desk of the colonel of the militia special forces there was a model of the T-80 tank - the recollection that the graduate of the Blagoveshchensk Higher Command Tank School Kukarin had given his long life to armored forces. Everything that happened in the military life of Colonel E. V. Kukarin, when he became deputy commander of the Special Forces of Special Forces "Lynx", now belonged not only to him, but also to the combat unit in his biography, which Evgeny Viktorovich deservedly quickly. History - a delicate, great-power affair. The details of the story are quickly lost, dissolving into everyday life. In order to keep these details in memory, people need to meet more often, time after time to remember the wars on the roads of the war.
The time chosen by us, disposed to talk in detail. The on-duty detachments of the Special Purpose Detachment Station rested, while Colonel Kukarin and I talked about his participation in the storming of Grozny ...
First, the units under the command of Colonel Kukarin went through Old Sunzha, then they were transferred to the east, re-targeting the Kukara group in the direction of the Minutka Square.
The magical, bloody word "Minute" ... What "Minute" is - well known, who fought in Chechnya. So before the first war, a cafe was called on the square, tragically known for the number of casualties suffered by the Russian troops here. Square "Minute" - popular name, born of the circumstances of the war. At the end of March 1996, I flew from Grozny to the Black Tulip Center for the dead, escorting two killed Sobrovets - countrymen. I brought the sad cargo of "200" to the 124 laboratory, where I was met by a medical colonel who was sent to Rostov-on-Don from the Military Medical Academy in St. Petersburg. Having accepted the documents from me, he, over-tired, asked where the people died? I replied: "In a moment." And the colonel, with unbearable pain, said: "Well, how much will you carry from this Minute of those killed ?!"
Minute has always been important in a strategic sense. Therefore, in the first and second war they fought for it with particular bitterness.
In the first Chechen campaign, the SOBR GUOP participated in the storming of Grozny. Krestyaninov Andrei Vladimirovich, the SOBR head, at that time, the division commander, in January 1995, together with the officers of the 45 regiment of the Airborne Forces, GRU special forces and the officers of the consolidated detachment beat off the enemy "Kukuruza" - the unfortunate seventeen-storey building hanging over the Sunzha river, Dudyaev Palace. Sovmin, Oil Institute. From "Kukuruzy" I looked through the entire Lenin Avenue leading to the "Minute".
In the second war from the east, EV Kukarin attacked Grozny, whose front-line experience was now an integral part of the combat experience of the Special Task Force.
In our leisurely conversation, I immediately noticed that he seldom says "I", more than "we", referring to his military friends with whom I liberated the city. He was honest in the list of problems, paid tribute not only to the courage of his soldiers, but also really appreciated the strength of the enemy. His usually gushing sense of humor and self-irony subsided with memories of the complexities of everyday combat. In the stories of the dead, hidden bitterness prevailed. A military officer who sat in front of me in his love for artillery, mortars, in the art of their use, in Suvorov's respect for the Russian soldier was for me the legendary captain Tushin from the novel War and Peace - only already a colonel with an academic education who learned a monstrous criminal terrorist war.
Kukarin Evgeny Viktorovich smoked a cigarette after a cigarette, and with his eyes I saw Grozny, professionally prepared by Chechen Maskhadov for defense.
During our conversation in the location of the Special Militia Detachment, the telephone in my office of Yevgeny Viktorovich was silent on my luck.
Dictaphone allowed to preserve the authenticity of the intonation of Kukarin. In his story about the storming of Grozny, he was soldierly generous in detail. Only experienced people are capable of this, who do not even realize that their participation in the war, that is, in the defense of life, will remain in history.
On November 7, 2006, Colonel Kukarin Evgeny Viktorovich told:
- I am in Chechnya, then the head of the operations department of the Internal Troops Group headquarters, and with me ten officers arrived in December 1999 of the year. The road to the war was short: from Mozdok to the Terek Range, where, besides us, the army command center was deployed. Grozny was not visually observed. The weather was lousy: now fog, then low clouds. Yes, he is visible to us, as in the picture, and was not needed. We were the operators of the command post of explosives, and our task did not include an independent search of enemy firing points. A normal operator, when he reads the report, looks at the map, listens to what is reported to him by phone, he must visibly present the whole situation in front of him, analyze, issue his suggestions - where to transfer troops, what direction to strengthen, where to go around the enemy. Operators are the brain of the command post, which collects information, summarizes, reports, develops proposals for the decision of the chief of staff. Then he reports these proposals to the commander. Operators lead the situation, constantly collecting information. I was the head of the operations department: in addition to collecting, analyzing and preparing proposals, we constantly prepared maps for the report of the chief of staff to the commander.
Standard reports in the morning, in the afternoon and in the evening were dismissed if the situation was complicated. Report immediately: just knock, come in. Maps were conducted around the clock: where the troops, their position, who went where, who interacts with whom. In this painstaking tracking was the main difficulty of our work. The difficulty was that the officers in the operations department were appointed from different districts, and by the level of their education at the first stage of their implementation they could not work in full force. Sometimes a person lacked the necessary system of knowledge. There were guys with whom we conducted classes in the operations department. They remained after duty, gathered near the map, taught them how to report the information correctly, so as not to be dispersed. They taught to avoid too much. The commander does not need to tell that the water-carrier has traveled ten kilometers, reached the bush, because of which the fighters left. We have to report why this happened on this road when it happened. In our reports, we were obliged to squeeze.
When we started to work on the Ridge, the Chechen group, still intact, had great strength and resources. We just crimped it. Our troops on the ridge moved to Grozny. There was a systematic cutting off the city from the foothills. The main task was to surround him, stop feeding people, food, ammunition. The scouts estimated the number of militants defending Grozny as more than five thousand trained, able to fight people. Arabs and other mercenaries were kept apart. They didn’t even trust the Chechens. But in every Chechen detachment there were emissaries of Khattab or a group of Arabs who performed control functions. Through them received cash. The Arabs in the Chechen detachments worked as ideologues. They introduced ideology to create the World Islamic Caliphate, where only two nations were supposed to be Muslims and their slaves.
Arab emissaries controlled the timeliness of reports to the leadership of the Chechen group.
There was also a control system: they fought, brought out militants, introduced fresh ones. The status of units closely monitored
Russian troops squeezed the Chechen group, the strategic position and state of mind of which, of course, changed for the worse. It was hard for the Chechens to see themselves surrounded, even in the city, when you cannot carry out a maneuver by forces, to transfer them.
Week we were preparing the command post. I have already reported that he is ready to receive the operational staff, to work, as I received the command to go down "from the hill", to find the East grouping that stood under Sunzha and lead it. They said: "Arrive, head, organize" ... One answer: "Yes."
It was the process of coordinating units. In the grouping "Vostok", in addition to the internal troops, there was a large group of riot police, special security forces. It was necessary to act together. At the first stage, when they entered the suburb of Sunzha, it was foreseen that there would be some kind of resistance, and at that time the task was to clear the territory without unnecessary sacrifices on both sides. In each offensive group, a guide was planned; representatives of the Chechen administration to explain to local residents what is happening.
Sweep, go down the street. With us, the representative is a Chechen. He addresses the residents:
- Present the house for inspection.
At the first stage of the hostilities in Grozny, this was the case.
We practically passed the initial part of Old Sunzha, a suburb of Grozny, without shots, until we reached the third and fourth microdistricts. As soon as we went to Lermontov Street, about four hundred meters left before the high-rise buildings, everything started in the second half of the day ...
The Vostok group consisted of the 33-I Brigade of the VV Pasha Tishkov, 101-I Brigade of the Yevgeny Zubarev VV - then they were colonels - now the generals. There were a lot of police units - about 800 people. My task was to dock the assault groups of the internal troops with the assault groups of the internal affairs agencies: sobratsami, riot policemen, so that everyone would work smoothly. Difficulties were of a different order, including psychological. People did not know each other - they were each other, and they were going on such a task - the storming of Grozny. It was necessary to go through certain stages of interaction, training, to get to know each other better. Thus, the level of trust increased. SOBR and riot police see who we are dealing with, we, the internal troops, also understand who we are dealing with. Determined: what is the mood of the staff. And the mood for the storming of the people was serious. We laid out a model of the village, prepared maps, organized interaction, worked out signals: how, in what cases to act, how to act when the situation became more complicated, senior assault groups were appointed from the police, internal troops, their deputies. We all worked on the layout. We went on reconnaissance closer to Sunzha: who, how would go, where to place mortar batteries for fire support. At this time, Grozny was already blocked, shelling was carried out at enemy defense sites, and the firing points identified were suppressed.
The model, who had served us a great service, was prepared by the brigade commanders, management officers, and chiefs of staff. How was the layout of the settlement designated for the assault? Sawed on the chocks birch. This is a house, this is a street ... The whole geography of Old Sunzha was laid out of improvised means. Soldiers tried. It was our ordinary life. We all led to a normal fight. We went on the attack not to "cheers". Say, we cast hats. Classes were given. Peter riot police conducted training exercises from grenade launchers.
If we talk about the possibility of commanders to rest, then I proceeded from the concept: having no time to sleep, the commander is an emergency.
During the battle, he may collapse without force at any time. And the war must be treated philosophically. Of course, we slept a little, but ... slept. During the period of preparation for the assault, people were allowed to rest, even the baths were organized. In all the teams have created stocks of underwear. During an intensive fire attack before the New 2000 Year, they also organized a bathhouse - everyone in the group washed up. War is war, but a soldier and an officer must have a human appearance.
We were not in the Great Patriotic War, where we demanded: "Not one step back!" Nobody told us this time. "Take the Terrible to such and such a number!" But the pressure from above was felt. Recommended to hurry. And it is clear why ... The assault of Grozny was the only plan of the war. We, the participants of its implementation, could not act each with its own bell tower, and someone in the north, I in the east to evaluate everything that happens on their own. First of all, the information was brought to me only in the part that concerns me. The overall intention of the whole operation was not revealed to us.
... As soon as we went outside Lermontov, the resistance of the militants sharply increased: shelling of mortars went off, Chechen snipers, grenade throwers, machine gunners started working. Our situation was complicated by the fact that in this neighborhood the streets were non-parallel. On the parallel streets may be stealthy promotion. These streets in the suburbs of Grozny we passed normally. When they went to the longitudinal, they immediately suffered losses. Wounded by the acting commander of the 33 th brigade, Colonel Nikolsky. He was evacuated.
I had to take this line, spread out, close the entire line from the field from the greenhouses. They began to prepare firing points, riding all the key, advantageous corner houses. We spread out from the Sunzha River to the greenhouses. The result was an arc.
One hundred and first brigade of the flat field did not let. She buried herself in the ground. On the radio, the Chechens behaved as usual. They listened to us, but it was not a 1995 year. This campaign did not break anything secret. Some ordinary conversations without encoding, without hidden control, they could listen and that's all. We changed the coding periodically.
Some Jamaat, the 2 th Ingush Regiment, the Kandahar group, Arab divisions, stood against us. Solid forces.
There were reports that the militants want to escape from the city through Sunzha. The option to retreat to the mountains is usual: and closer, and the terrain allows, further to Argun, Dzhalka, Gudermes, and then dissolve in the forests. Data on the departure received serious. The Chechens made several attempts to break through the Sunzhu. We probed how we feel. Of course, I did not have any unmanned aircraft. Intelligence in our direction, we received from Lieutenant-General Bulgakov, the commander of the Special Group of the Grozny region. He directly supervised all those who stormed Grozny from the Ministry of Defense. For respectable, recognizable by the radio station, Bulgakov's growl in the officer corps was respectfully called Shirkhan. His voice is peculiar, with a remarkable commanding intonation. Sounds right.
Bulgakov must pay tribute. He has a lot of experience. Afghanistan passed, the first Chechen war. He really imagined what we have to face. This is a very prepared commander. It was a pleasure to talk with him. He understood everything. We came to him on Khankala, said: "Comrade general, my situation is like this ..." Everything, come on, build up, "he said in reply," push through. "There was no such thing:" Attach the bayonets to the psychic attack! "I tried to help everyone that he had from his means and strength.
They brought us information that behind the third and fourth neighborhoods there was a park zone and in it a cluster of Arabs who set up their camp there. I reported to the general that I did not have adequate means of influence — I did not get mortar fire to the Arabs. Ten to fifteen minutes went impact on the enemy. Bulgakov struck Gradami. He had heavy Msta batteries and jet divisions. His response to our request was instant. In the north, Grudnov faced difficulties and asked for support. Bulgakov helped. There was no such thing as in the first Chechen war: they say, you are from one department, we are from another, stand in line, pick yourself. The Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of Interior in 1999 - 2000 of the city worked together, performing one task. This is the new main feature of the second campaign. There was no disagreement between the officers of the army, the Interior Ministry and the internal troops. We worked on one result, on which the execution of the task depended. Someone heavier accounted for, others a little easier. In general, someone as the family is written. I do not believe in God, but I wear a cross. True, there is something. What is it called - I do not know. But over each person it is the unknown, the imperious, the fateful is. And leads a person through life. Supervises your actions.
When we directly embarked on Lermontov - this fiery street, the first time I had to sleep for an hour, two a day, because the nightly sorties of the militants became permanent. These were their checks, how we feel fixed. Their attempts to slip, to leak at night have deprived us, commanders, of sleep.
We must pay tribute to the service of the rear: we did not experience a lack of ammunition, special means. We had a big expense for ammunition for mortars. I had two 120 mm mortar batteries and one 82 mm. They worked day and night on identified and explored targets, according to data that defectorists gave. The militants who surrendered were saying: "They are sitting here and there." We spotted, mapped and diligently worked on the objectives. So worked mortar 101 and XNUM th brigade of explosives. Some of them were to retire to the reserve just before the assault on Grozny. Life will not stop. But we must pay tribute to the officers who conducted the work with the boys: More than others, the division commander, who later died in the village of Komsomolskoye. Demob left not only at the beginning of the assault. They fought until the last day, until we left the city taken. I've been on batteries. How not to go to the fighters of those who lead the war. Heroic guys: filthy, dirty - some teeth are white, but the mortars are clean. Positions prepared. What else does? Twenty are nineteen boys, and they worked very well. I do not remember a single covering, hitting my own. So they bummed, as horrible - just to shoot. Everything is like a penny. You ask the mortar men: "Here it is necessary" - and so clear hit. Of course, this is the merit of the officers. After all, an officer shoots, not a mortar.
The Chechens also worked mortars, fragments of 82-mm mm min fell near us. Militants fired on our positions. On the first day of the assault, we were covered with millimeter 82's. Apparently these places were shot in advance, just waiting for us to reach the frontier. We understood that we would face head-to-head with militants. If at the beginning of the Old Sunzhi people were in houses, then as they approached the city line, to the first high-rise buildings, there were practically no residents in the houses. This was the first sign that something will happen here, we must wait. And when we advanced in depth, approached the militants directly, they got the opportunity to use mortars. They could not catch their Chechens in the private sector. And for us with full pleasure could work.
Chechen snipers fired constantly. They were a sniper without any stretch. They shot very well. There was a case when we tried to pull out our sniper who was killed in a neutral position. The infantry fighting vehicle left the private sector, about two hundred meters before the skyscrapers, in just five minutes the BMP-2 had not a single device left: not a single headlight, not a single position lamp. Even the tower was wedged - a bullet hit by a shoulder strap. So militants dense, accurate fire led, that this BMP just came into disrepair. That time we didn’t take the body of our sniper. Then we pulled him out anyway - the guy from the 33-th brigade of the internal troops. His death was outrageous ... Two contract soldiers decided to test a sniper rifle. Since you don’t turn around in the private sector, the two of them, naively finding that the war seemed calm, decided to move to the outskirts of the microdistrict in order to shoot high-rises. As a result, as soon as the contract servicemen reached a level place, the first defeat went classically - on the legs. One starts to scream, the second began to rush. He did not have unloading, so he stuffed the cartridges in the pockets of HB. He, too, was shot in the legs, but fell into the pocket where the cartridges lay. The ricocheting bullet saved the guy. The weakness of equipment saved his life. And with a cry: "We must pull out a friend!" - he returned to the location. Pull out a full-time sniper failed. The fire was so tight. And he was lying very close to the enemy.
We are from Lermontov Street so far and have not advanced. If we had broken into assault groups and walked longitudinally in the direction of high-rises, we would have become a tasty morsel for militants. Our groups of fifteen to twenty people would simply be destroyed. Based on the situation, when data were received on the planned breakthrough of the Chechens, we were forced to gain a foothold, to create a hard line of defense, which then, by order of General Bulgakov, was handed over to CSKA, who possessed large forces and means. We, the grouping of the Interior Ministry, were taken to a day of rest.
We were taken away and then tragic events occurred in the city of Argun. There was a redeployment of soldiers and units of internal troops. The group was growing: forces from Gudermes were pulled up. Argun was a column. Transported backs. Militants attacked from ambush. The Ural of the 33 Brigade of the Air Force came under fire. Help was requested on the air. We immediately assigned an reinforced platoon there: three infantry fighting vehicles — fifteen airborne troops. For each BMP planted officer. We didn’t know exactly where the “Ural” was, but we were told that he was shot and needs to be pulled out with people. I sent people there. The deputy commander of the battalion, Nikita Gennadyevich Kulkov, went on the armor. He received the Hero of Russia posthumously.
I absolutely forbade him to enter the city! Well, on three BMPs - where? According to intelligence data in Argun, at this moment there were Chechen militants 200-300. Leading the attack, they held down the actions of the local Chechen police, blocked the points of deployment of the attached forces. Hosted by the city, went to the station. When our guys from the 33 Brigade approached the bridge at the entrance to Argun, the military commandant left to meet them, said: "Guys, we must help! Our people are dying!" And Kulkov made a decision: "Forward!" But how did he make the decision? His military commander, senior in rank and position, ordered his power: "Go!" And who on these three BMPs entered the city, almost all died. Of the fifteen soldiers - only two came out. We jumped on one BMP. The car came. Empty conveyor. Empty machine gun boxes. Shot everything. The driver said: “Everyone died on the outskirts of Argun. This is in the direction of Gudermes - near the extreme five-story building and the elevator”.
Two days later we received a task from Khankala - to act in the direction of Minute. At first, my group went through Khankala, then we went to the side - in the area of the Daki Zavgaev villa. There, the assault squad of the 504 Army Regiment was defending. We moved to them, and then together, in two groups, we went towards Minutka Square. A little later, the army team also handed me.
The first time, our task was moving ahead of the army orders: mastering and cleaning the rear, so that the militants would not occupy this territory again. In principle, our main task was to put roadblocks, cut on the map. Then, due to changes in the situation and losses in the army assault squad, this task changed. We received an order to act in Grozny as an assault squad and went according to plan - quarter after quarter: little by little, without too much fanaticism, biting into the Chechen defense.
According to intelligence, the same forces that we fought on Staraya Sunzha turned out to be against us. Chechens actively maneuvered around the city. Where they started to press, there they threw the best.
Chechens have built their defenses correctly. Created a single trench system. They dug up the streets on the key points viewed: squares, squares. Everything was under crossfire. The foundations of houses with broken loopholes became dots. Militants could move covertly. Outwardly, they were not visible. Chechens were able to hold large "keys" with small forces. In the capital high-rise buildings, they broke down the interior walls - for active movement. In some apartments, even the ceilings struck in order to leave a dangerous place on the rope; the enemy’s instructors were literate in this regard. Sometimes people ask: "What tactical new Chechen insurgents have come up with when defending their city, what new zest?" “But nothing,” I answered, “We made them a zest.” The gunmen expected us, as in 1994 - 1995. we introduce the technique on the streets of Grozny. Under the guise of personnel, as written in the textbooks, let's go in orderly rows. Let's build a Christmas tree fire: the right column on the left side is looking, the left one on the right, and the Chechens will systematically shoot us. That did not happen. We did not use the old tactics. We chose another. Ahead was the staff. Artillery gunners and aircraft operators acted directly in battle formations. As soon as resistance began from somewhere, the group immediately stopped, informed its location and the enemy was fired. After the suppression of resistance by fire, we began to move on. This was the planning of our movement.
When a “comrade” came to our talks from the other side: they say, let's discuss this, yes, this, do not sell ammunition, I replied: “You see, we don’t even remove shoulder straps in this war. You see, I have asterisks, signs the differences are there. See? We are not hiding from you. " I told him: "Dear, this war is a little different. You will not see what you expected to see. We will sweep away you with fire, and then quietly occupy your borders." That's how we acted in the direction of the Minute - systematically and every day. Resistance was constant.
Basayev defended for a moment. He had artillery, mortars, including improvised, anti-aircraft guns. When our processing came aviation, on planes in the open fired Basayevsky DShK. For urban conditions, Basayev’s units were pretty well armed: grenade launchers, flamethrowers, sniper weapon. Chechen militants prepared very well for the defense of Grozny. But they thought that the tactics of the second assault would be similar to the tactics of the first, 1995, assault. They were counting on the inertia of thinking, army blockheading. Hooray! Hooray! If only to report on the holiday, the anniversary, the elections, as it was before, and we have excluded the cap version. The basis of the tactics for the liberation of Grozny was: to reliably push the enemy firing points with artillery, mortars, and aviation, and then go and probe the people.
We acted systematically, without setting ourselves any supertasks: "Take a minute by January 1." We went as it was.
We must pay tribute to the army commanders with whom we, the internal troops, worked ... General Bulgakov, Kazantsev are wise, thoughtful people. Bulgakov, a military wolf, like this: "I said. Do it!" "Comrade general, can it be better this way?" - I will say. Thinks: "Yes, you think it would be better?" "Yes". "Come on". Bison Bulgakov answered for the storming of Grozny. A joint group commanded by General Kazantsev.
Strategically, everything was decided by Bulgakov. Setting tasks from him was daily. He constantly toured everyone. Sit in some UAZ and motanet, where necessary. Once the BMP almost crushed him: he even got a serious injury. Bulgakov dense build, voice - pipe. As the bellows, the honey bees drop. As will begin to growl: "My children, forward!"
In our own direction, we more successfully used the available forces and means. And, probably, they had the greatest success of all the subdivisions covering Grozny. What is important Minute? When it is captured, it immediately cuts off the northern, eastern part of the city — it cuts them, cuts and there is nowhere for the militants to go. But most of the militants still left the city on the other direction. The Chechens were in possession of the atmosphere, listened attentively to the broadcast, and analyzed. Militants have traditionally had serious means of communication, including with scanners. The scanner catches the wave on which the enemy works, then you turn on and listen.
We also knew the enemy well, who, at times, frankly self-exposed. I still have radio interception:
"If Russian armor comes to the house, call the artillery, do not wait for the connection.
- There are civilians.
- All sacrifices in the name of Jihad. In paradise, we will understand.
- Russians start combing and can find our wounded.
- Is there a bookmark in the house? (referring to the mine)
“Then act upon detection.” (An order to destroy
at home with the wounded militants) "
When we walked to Minute, the LNG-9 batteries were always raised up on the rooftops. We have them like rapiers, like sniper rifles fired. Chechen snipers were especially hunted for by our gunners. Many of the gunners were injured. The LNG-9 fire calculations were, of course, disastrous. On direct aiming extremely accurate.
- See? - I say the commander of the calculation. - We must get to the balcony window.
No question, he answers.
Nizhny Novgorod Army 245-th Regiment went with us for a moment. Also so prepared guys! When on the Minute they broke through to the skyscrapers, the militants began to surrender immediately.
Our guys, 674-th regiment of explosives, look at the army team, they say:
- Handsome! On a single impulse burst. Well done!
In this war everyone fought elbow to elbow. If something did not work out for the army team, we helped, if it didn’t work for us, the army team rushed to help. From the 504-th regiment, given to us in the battles on Sunzha, the chief of staff of their battalion arrived to us exhausted by the death of the Chechen fire attack, constant insomnia. I tell him:
- Sit down, tell me. What's the matter? What is the situation?
“We are walking along the railway,” he says. “Militants for some longitudinal ditches are selected at night and are constantly firing. Life does not give. Shoot all the flank.
We gave him our map encoding, radio station, fed him, said:
- Go to the battalion, today you will sleep peacefully.
And according to his requests from our mortars, all the fire effects of the militants were completely excluded. And this, despite the fact that he was in another assault detachment, he had his own regiment commander, his artillery and mortar batteries. But he turned to us, because he knew how we effectively worked at Staraya Sunzha.
We told him:
- Drive in peace. You will be calm.
Fulfilled their word, but said goodbye as follows:
- Tell your bosses - let us be given a mine car.
By the time they were in great shortage. So we, the internal troops and the army, interacted during the storming of Grozny.
Chechens under such powerful fire pressure began to show some kind of parliamentary activity.
First, a representative of the FSB came to us and said that a certain subject would come out from the direction of the insurgents, he gave me signs. And he really came out, with him a radio station, a knife and all. Zelimkhan introduced himself as head of the security service Abdul-Malik.
“I,” he says, “have come to you for talks.”
He was dragged to my command post blindfolded. Untied his eyes and began to lead the conversation - what does he want? The question was raised about the exchange of prisoners, but in my direction from our side there were no prisoners. We had a Red Cross hospital in the rear. Zelimkhan asked for permission to take out his wounded to this hospital. They, the militants, say, are running out of medical supplies. I replied:
- No problem. You wear. One of your wounded on a stretcher, and four of our prisoners are his. Your injured will receive medical care, and our boys, captivated by you, will stay with us. Zelimkhan replied:
- I'll think about it. Give information to the decision of Abdul-Malik.
We then tightly closed Sunzha. Excluded the passage to the area of all. They, the militants, did not like that everything was so tightly closed. If at the beginning of hostilities on Lermontov Street there was some other movement of people, then we stopped it. Because this is information leakage, taking out any information to the enemy. We have repeatedly caught and handed over our bodies to Chechen intelligence officers. Once they caught a veteran of the first Chechen war. He had a certificate of benefits. The documents were lined. One of the best Chechen scouts ... We kept the broadcast under control. The militants said: "Grandfather will go in the morning" ... We also write in a notebook: "Grandfather will go in the morning." It is clear that the grandfather must be met. Calculated grandfather. They brought to me an old, evil wolf. His eyes from hatred for us were somewhere near the back of his head. Predominant predator. Maybe he had agent skills, but he failed to show them. If we did not have information that the grandfather would go - lame, with a stick, he, the experienced enemy, could have passed. But the 20 squad had a scanner and we organized a wiretap post.
When the official part of the negotiations with Zelimkhan is over, I tell him:
- Zelimkhan, do not you understand that the war is moving in a different direction. Finish the resistance. You will no longer see people attacking in crowds, as it was during the first war. Armored will not see. We will simply destroy you with artillery, mortar fire and aircraft. Nobody will substitute more people for you to shoot at your pleasure. The war turned into another quality. What is the meaning of your resistance? We just grind you. Let's have another conversation.
Our conversation later went on to say that the militants would surrender: go out one by one, from the 50 distance, lay down the weapon before the post and go to the drive ...
The question of surrender was, but something did not work out. Abdul-Malik, the field commander, was an ideological Arab. Therefore, the Chechen militants, not daring to surrender, suffered severely, suffered irreparable losses.
At the end of the conversation Zelimkhan asked to sell ammunition. From such arrogance, I choked.
“Ah, no, honey,” I said. - You do not see, here all people are normal. We don’t even give you the used closure so that you don’t go into it much.
Zelimkhan left us in grief.
Somehow, foreign correspondents were identified in my direction. We, as expected, cares for them. They had accreditation in Moscow, and the journalists were in the city of Grozny. There was genuine surprise on their faces - why were they detained? But when I asked for a Russian accreditation permitting to be in a combat zone, they calmed down. I asked them:
- Where should you work?
And he himself answered with a smile for them:
- Moscow city. And where are you? You are not here ... You are here
can get lost. Here are places. Yes, we save your life by delaying.
We reported upstairs. They say:
- Wait. Send for the journalists a helicopter.
Their man is five, six was. All male. American, Englishman, Spaniard, Czech, Polish. They on the Volga rather impudently entered the area controlled by us. Accompanied by Chechens moved. And I have fighters of internal troops, trained in special vigilance, report:
- Comrade Colonel, incomprehensible people are gathering around the village with a video
by cameras. It seems like they do not speak Russian.
- All to gather and to me for a conversation.
- There is.
Lead. I ask:
- Who are they?
- Yes, we are journalists.
- I see. What's next?
- We were allowed. We are on a business trip. All shoot.
- And who allowed?
- Yes, we drove everywhere, nobody said a word to us. We all shot.
“There are other orders in my direction,” I say. And I have collected in submission. Command:
- Pass the video equipment for review. Check out guys. Any experts?
- Yes, - they answer sobrovets.
- Pass the cameras.
And then it began. They to me:
- Maybe you champagne? Want to? New Years is soon.
- Thank you, I do not use.
- Maybe there is a desire to call home? (journalists meant their space connection)
- Wife at work, son in the service. There is no one to call.
I then say:
- But the fighters, probably, will call. Come on, fighter, come here. Mom where are you?
- In Siberia,
- Mom want to call?
- Well? - I appeal to journalists. - Let the boy call.
Put the phone. And the boys one by one went from the trenches to call. But journalists for some reason did not remove it.
- You are probably hungry? - I ask correspondents.
- Yes, so - they do not know what to answer,
Now we feed. - And we ourselves have really nothing to do.
“Lunch isn't ready yet,” I say. - And we will eat Russian exotic porridge?
- What kind of porridge?
- Well, Christmas trees are green! How many years work in Russia and do not know. Well, open them a few cans of soldiers porridge with stew, - commanded.
Opened them, warmed up.
- And spoons, fighter? - I ask. Replies:
- No spoons.
“Are there crackers?” I wonder.
- There is.
I ask foreigners:
- Everyone knows how to use a cracker instead of a spoon? So, look ... Do as I do. - I had to teach journalists this wisdom.
“Do you earn a little?” I say to the correspondent. - Colleagues, remove it over a cup of soldier porridge. And the editor in chief for this feat
he will double his salary - on arrival.
The American journalist, listening to all this, was rolling with laughter. Then Kolya Zaitsev brought them tea in a thermos.
- Will you have tea?
- We will.
We got our smoked kettle, the mugs are dirty. The fighter is so happy — his mother called home — also smoked — his teeth glistened, he conjures near the stove: he served tea in mugs, carries it, dipping his finger in boiling water, smiling:
- I still have lemon, - reports. In one hand a lemon, in another a small knife. Cut lemon with dirty hands, filed.
- There is no sugar, but we have New Year presents. Candy gentlemen.
Some caramel brought. Journalists finally understood - where they got. Called - cutting edge. I then speak to the Englishman:
“You’ll come back to Moscow, call my wife,” I give you the telephone. “Tell me, I met your husband for Mozdok during a walk.” He works in the headquarters. Happy New Year family congratulates. Got it?
- I got it.
And, well done such a call. I come from war, my wife says:
- Called a very polite guy, speaks with an accent, congratulated
happy New Year. Decent such.
- He's a gentleman. Englishman. How will he not perform if the word
His call was just before the New Year.
Spaniard - a journalist say:
- Why did you come here? You have problems in Spain
To the American I address:
- He probably thinks. Now some Julio is walking along a snow-white beach with snow-white, and then on the yacht with the same composition reads his material about Chechnya. And he needs it there, in Spain? Or do you stress them digestion improve?
“Can we take pictures of how your soldiers shoot?” - journalists ask me.
- Why do you need these toys?
The boys say:
- Comrade Colonel, but what? You can work.
Tank crashes. Journalists close to him. Tank as shied. All correspondents fell on the ass,
“They took it,” I say. - Enough
Normally, in general, people accepted. And sent them to the rear for their own good. According to the documents, they were all registered in Moscow. How did they get to us?
They left very satisfied. But at parting they again complained that they would have a small salary for this trip to the war - they could not get anything off. A helicopter flew in and took the correspondents away from sin.
Once there was a Chechen attempt by a number of twenty people to sit closer to us - for the subsequent breakthrough at night. They all covertly concentrated in the house - in 200-300 meters from our front line. The scouts spotted them, made it possible to concentrate. Then, from two directions, this entire group in the house was destroyed by the Bumblebee fire-throwers, which showed the militants that we had eyes and ears too. After this, new attempts to break through Sunzha were excluded. Because we have transferred. Hard data was received that the militants would not go through Sunzha. This was the main reason for our withdrawal.
At night, we were hard on the Chechens. Some military observers who know the battle from the side, write in their reviews: "Russian assault groups have sinned the monotony of thinking." I do not know. We thought creatively. Our callsigns, of course, were haute couture - "Playboy", "Nikita", in the 33 Brigade "Sight". Chechens talked on the air: "What kind of scumbags against us, urki or something?"
I sat with the mortars, I thought:
- Let's diversify the fire. I'll tell you: "The pipes are apart." This means that each mortar shoots at its zone.
We took part of the territory stormed by us and divided the Olympic rings of the radii of defeats of separately falling mines. It turned out pretty solid area. A volley and every mortar hits his point. The team goes in plain text. She can and miss. Some kind of "pipe apart", and then a volley. And all the militants covered. They also listened to us carefully. When at night you say: “Light!”, The mortar shoots, hangs up the “chandelier”. Then the team: "Volley!" There is a covering. If you saw the chandelier - Chechens dare - you need to go to the shelter. We alternated these teams: "Light! Volley!" Then we will smoke a little bit: "Volley! Light!" And what was left for us? And this is not only our ideas. Probably, someone invisible prompted ...
One night they attacked us hard. The shelling began serious. We even suffered losses. Intelligence covered right in the building - through the roof - they rested there. A mine flew in, then the reconnaissance grenade launcher worked. I had to get angry. And at midnight we gave the Chechens a rustle: “Volley! Light! Pipes apart! Light! Volley!” And they had a holiday when they can eat only before the sun rises. It is clear that in the firing positions of the militants there are duty forces. The rest as if on vacation - in the basement. We think - when does the sun rise? In so much. Good. What time do the militants need to get up in order to have time to eat and advance to the position? We calculate the period and cover the whole area with indiscriminate mortar fire. That's how we were included in their working day. We did everything to hit the enemy as much as possible, and not in the old-fashioned way: "Along the lines! Fire!" We have left all this stupidity in the past. We estimated the Chechen losses as follows ... The refugees left. We asked them questions:
- How is the situation there?
“After the New Year’s night in this house, the entire basement is wounded.”
After a while others go out. We ask:
- How are our friends feeling?
- A lot of wounded. Scream!
The militants have already run out of painkillers. Of course, they suffered losses. And we diligently contributed to this.
The cemetery was there. Militants at night tried to bury their own. Intelligence reports: "A stir in the cemetery."
- What a stir?
- Obviously, getting ready. Will bury the dead.
We covered this square with a mortar battery. What to do? War. Goal focused. Ordinary people do not go to the cemetery at night.
We did not give Chechen rebel fighters day or night. Therefore, in our direction, somewhere after the New Year, their resistance has weakened.
Girls snipers, of course, promised us on the air:
- We, boys, shoot all the eggs.
And until the last day, until we left there, the sniper fire from the side of the Chechens was amazingly accurate.
We came to change the army motorized infantry company. Mine sit in pillboxes, prepared nests, there are sniper, machine gun positions - there is where to secretly move. And the newly arrived motorized infantry rose to their full height:
- What are you guys, all nishtyak here. What are you hiding?
When they cut down three or four fighters in half an hour, we look - the motorized infantrymen already crouched down, they began to pay attention to our positions. We tell them again:
- Guys, here another option does not work. Lick out everyone. As for the so-called psychological warfare in the air, Ichkerian gavkotnya is so sick of it. He could not sit in front of us, but somewhere in Vedeno and yelp for the whole of Chechnya. What do we pay attention to him?
Sometimes we answered on the air:
- Dear, come out to fight! We'll get you brother now. Stop wasting blather.
We did not pay any attention to the threats. In the discussion, the ordinary swearing did not get involved. We tried to behave in a disciplined manner.
Moving to the Square "Minute", we used tactics tested on Old Sunzha. Our main forces were: the assault detachment of the 504 Army Regiment, the detachment of the 245 Army Regiment, the detachment of the 674 Army of the Mozdok Regiment, and the 33 Team of St. Petersburg. SOBRY, St. Petersburg riot police were with me until the last second. Zaitsev Nikolai Andreevich was my deputy for the police. Now he is a total pensioner. Good man.
We went for a minute wings. The first regiment was in our operational control. He cut off the enemy from the cruciform hospital on the left flank - this is our left wing. With the 33 Brigade, the 674, 504 and 245 regiments, we took Minute as a horseshoe. Entered, swept from the flanks and locked their wings in a moment. Hard stood up, took up the defense. A feature of our actions was: we started a firefight in the morning, finished at lunch.
Each group: from the north, from the west in its particular time, began to crush. To the militants could not understand where the main direction of impact. Bulgakov, for example, told me:
- At seven o'clock you go.
- Comrade General, at seven o'clock I see nothing. First,
we planned morning fire attack on all points - and no matter how much you ask, Bulgakov gave fire. - While brick dust settles among the houses, fog will come down. Let's, ”I say to the commander,“ we will begin when we have time. ” I see who shoots me - I press him. And in the fog, nose to nose collided ... Clap. Clap. Everything. Fled again. No one saw anyone.
Therefore, we, as the Germans had. Morning coffee! The Germans, by the way, in a tactical sense were very well done.
Morning tea We look ... The fog has sat down, the dust has settled. We give the command:
We see our units. I was with them all the time: in the line of sight. The main thing is when a soldier knows that you, commander, go directly behind him. He is calm when the command post, and these are a few officers who are dragging everything on themselves, follow the advancing fighters. The soldiers always knew that we were there. We did not throw them. They fought differently, as it is written in the statute: "NP - kilometer from the front edge, KMP - 2, 3 kilometer". We were with the soldiers. In the conditions of the city it is safer, then no one will cut off the command post, where only the officers with maps and signalmen. So we moved for a moment.
In the morning, the entire group was struck at the identified targets. It was a signal to start action. But we, as a rule, did not start until the results of an artillery strike create conditions for further advancement for us. As soon as everything settled, appearances appeared, we began to walk. Where they met resistance, they immediately put pressure on him with mortars, artillery, bombers — aviation; Bulgakov did not skimp on combat means. A group of artillery officers was created, which worked amazingly. We had the utmost respect for the artillerymen. Only thanks to them, we had minimal losses and maximum promotion.
So exactly fired! And no one barked: "You what? And what about you ?!" I wondered how smoothly they worked! Artillery gunners were officers from a senior lieutenant to senior officers - commanders of batteries. The officers were clever!
If we entered a multi-storey building, I allocated room for myself for the command post ... My single map lay, next to the regimental commanders, all of them had codes. We even renamed the streets in our direction, which made the militants misleading. We all spoke the same language - in a single real time scale. The situation was going here the same: all and immediately. In the next room there was a group of gunners - here they are nearby. There was literally the following:
- Lesha, urgently - the goal!
- There are no questions: here, so here. Hit!
The only thing with which General Bulgakov was dissatisfied ... He told me:
- So. I pull up my command path to you. I answer:
“I'll move to the next house.” Is he:
- What are you - you do not want to work with me?
- No, I'm just uncomfortable to disturb you.
The command post of General Bulgakov also moved all the time. We have learned a lot from him. Great experience man.
The very first advantage in it is expedient decision-making. Bulgakov never waved his sword. He listened to everyone and made the most appropriate decision, the embodiment of which he used all the forces and means. Do not rush: "Oh, I'm right here! Oh, right now I'm there! But there is no". Bulgakov acted thoughtfully, planned, tough. Demanded too hard. He could have said a bad word, but if he saw the result, he forgave him. Secondly, he always reacted to unjustified losses, to the non-fulfillment of any task: “What is the reason ?! Report!” He could not stand the deception - this is when some commanders began to wishful thinking for the sake of circumstances. Or, on the contrary, they didn’t take any measures to carry out the task, some kind of nonsense was carried on the air, like: "I will regroup, accumulate." But Bulgakov: “You’ll be a two-day regroup and accumulate for me."
I had the best impressions about SOBRs during the assault: no questions for them, no friction. The commanders were good. Riot police showed themselves from the best side: Krasnoyarsk, St. Petersburg people.
Norilsk sobrovets remained in the memory. Sniper pair is being promoted to work. I say:
- So, more careful.
- There is.
Gone Zalegli. At night: boo, boo. Two shots. They come - two notches on the butts are made. They say:
- The SVD rifle is too old, but it works well.
Good, serious warriors. Without any foolish, geek veterans. Nobody bent his fingers. And no one puts them, if normal, working relations develop in the combat team. When they understand that you are guiding them correctly in a war, then they trust you. You do not invent something unimaginable there, like: “We stand up - I am the first. You follow me. And we shout“ Hurray. ”And in a merciless attack we take everyone down, occupying the skyscraper. And then? We need height ... He knows! You only need to report on the performance.
We must always soberly assess the situation. And then we practically had a dry law ... My requirement is that. There were no cases that someone in my field of view was drunk. The war must go sober. Then no glitches will appear. There are no gusts for every second feat, there will be no different adventures either. We did not have the desire to report that something was taken at any cost. Normal, quiet work. But there were, of course, interesting cases ...
When they went for a minute, we occupied the school complex. Placed on the roof of the battery. As usual, we shoot. The officers are working. Some furniture was found in order to lay out the map in my room. Stools set, the door was removed - and that table appeared. Created minimal convenience for work. Started, spank. A lad comes in - an officer, a captain, and without looking too much, says:
So. Well, finished everything here - to hell. I'm here with my reconnaissance, fucking order. Who will twitch, all to the nail ...
- Who are you, dear? - I ask.
- I'm the commander of the reconnaissance company.
- Very nice. Are you acting like this?
And the captain is drunk in the smoke.
- Well, you be more modest. You, I'm sorry, we started here without
And in the 674-th regiment was the company commander with the pogonyalom "Brick". I tell him:
- Brick, well, talk to a gentleman from intelligence. Seryoga of this scout took him aside, clarified the situation for him. I must say, the guy immediately moved in, offered his apologies and we never saw him again.
But for some reason, this drunken guy remained in the memory "Well, so finished. I’ll organize the war itself." In general, we were at the command post under the distribution: the troops are coming, but we need to roll.
One more time we sit. Everything is fine, we shoot, the troops are coming. The mood is vigorous. Suddenly shooting, frantic in the rear - what is it? A flock of militants that broke? Or got out of the well? Drag the crew of the BMP. Contractors. Again, not ours, and drunk in the trash. I gave the command to disarm them. And those at my command post have the right to swing: "Well - who is there to deal with?"
- Oh guys. Come on, scouts, explain to them the situation - where
they hit and what are the rules of good form here.
The scouts did not apply physical impact to them, but laid them on the floor, hands behind their backs. I went on the radio to the commander of these contractors, saying:
- Here BMP your lost.
This crew drunk shot at homes - anywhere. Maybe some chickens went to the yards. In general, they staged a war. This is usually the case with those who are in the rear. They, as a rule, combat actions arise spontaneously, fleetingly and are conducted with a high density of fire.
Officers arrived, took away their contract soldiers. Well, maybe due to this, too, normal relations with army officers were built. After all, there were no reports up:
- Comrade General, drunk crew number such and such, contract soldiers Vasya, Peter - and then on the merits.
Our life there, if perceived without humor, dies from turning the brain. On the third, second week you will end.
Life must be treated philosophically. When people ask me whether I have long since derived such a formula for my personal life, I ask again:
- I look ok?
- OK - they answer.
- So for a long time.
War is war. And life is life. In the Chechen war, I was angry. Even more. On stupidity. On the attitude of people like meat. Of course, at the beginning of the second company, there were attempts to command: "Forward and everything!" It used to press on me: "Go there - to complete the task!" No questions. Will do. And he asked some painful questions for someone: "And who supports me? Who covers? Who is my neighbor on the right, who is on the left? At the next turn of events, where should I go? And the last thing you say:" I will ask you - give me, please , reliable information about the enemy. "Silence ... There is no information.
- Let's blow! Go north, they tell me, you will be fine. It is necessary to cross.
Well, forwarded. And then what? Who is waiting for me there? There is no information. What is going to be there? How does it turn?
And this is all to play the soldier. A living person. The soldier went ... Well, if in such a battle with the soldier you die, and if not? How to continue to live, if you know that someone died because of your fault? Heavy burden. Commander. The responsibility of the officer in my youth was brought up by the very system of his training. Since college, she was deep, thoughtful. First, they raised a sense of responsibility for their actions. Secondly, we learned to defeat the enemy.
A soldier is good when trained. And the SOBRs, the OMON, with whom we went for a minute, passed the first assault on Grozny, and now participated in the second. With a biography of the officers! They checked me, asked before the assault:
- And if it will be like this?
- It will be like this.
- And if such a turn of events.
- It will be like this.
When we went for a minute, on the way met some tricky school complex. The riot police decided to climb it. And hit ... I gave the order to the mortar men: "Cover!" Those worked on the militants finally. We never abandoned ours. Still friends. We call back.
SOBRY, riot police came to war without armored vehicles. And we found exits. They gnawed and gnawed on the Chechen defense. And nothing. We got it. As the French say: "Everyone should make their own babble in the common cause." Well, we contributed.
At the request of General Bulgakov, I was introduced to the title of Hero of Russia. Handed over to the Kremlin. When they handed me a classmate of my son in the Ryazan Airborne School approached me — he also received the Hero. Suitable:
- Uncle Zhenya, hello!
And I didn’t carry food bags to them more than once in the school - I had to feed the growing up Russian paratroopers.
“How is it served?” I ask.
- Matured ...
These are the guys in Russia. And I didn’t get to the buffet after the Star was awarded. You had to go with all the awards. Well, I'm going across Moscow dressed up like a Christmas tree? Rattle there in the subway!
I started in the tank forces of the Ministry of Defense. In 1996, he retired from the army for incompetence and joined the internal forces. I did not think that I could function at headquarters. But I always liked working with people.
Well, in the history of the Russian flag, raised in a minute, it was like that. The officer of the press service of the Department of Internal Affairs of the Altai Territory. Vera Kulakova in Minute during the first war - in August 1996 of the year - her husband died. When Vera found out that we were being transferred for a minute, she, at that time sent to Chechnya, came and told me how it was. The officers who fought with her husband retained the Russian flag, which they removed from the building of the Interim Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation in Chechnya (GUOSH), when they left it in August, and handed it over to Kulakova Vera. She asked me to:
“When you exit for a minute, let me know by radio, I will come.” She is an active person. As a spokesman for the Ministry of Internal Affairs, all the time rushing to the troops. She has state awards, she understands the war. I told her:
- We went to the Minute. You can drive up. See where the husband fought
She came and said:
- Here I have a flag. I gave my word - to raise it in a minute. It will be correct if you raise the flag, Evgeny Viktorovich.
So I picked it up. I did not expect the video to be broadcast on Central Television, and my wife, whom I called and said at the beginning of the storming of Grozny, would see him, and then confirmed a couple of times that I was sitting in Mozdok and drawing maps.
With great difficulty, in order to preserve in my memory forever, I found a videotape on which Colonel Kukarin raised the Russian flag over Minute ... A snow-covered, smashed fortified Chechen militants. Many of them in camouflage equipment lie in ruins, overtaken by accurate artillery fire. Two Russian soldiers make their way through Grozny’s quarries on the roof of a high-rise building, with Kukarin in his left hand machine gun, in the right Russian flag. The fighter is trying to get into a narrow, sharp-edged, manhole and a bullet soars upwards, mounted by the colonel’s powerful hands. On Minute he raised two flags. The raising of the first, saved by Vera Kulakova in memory of her husband who died here, on Minute, was not shown on the air. All of Russia saw Colonel EV Kukarin, having fixed a high-rise state flag on a snow-covered roof, turns around and says:
“And this flag was raised in honor of the victorious storming of Grozny,” and, turning to the Chechen fighters, continues: “And no Khattab will help you remove it.” It will be necessary, we will hang it for the third time on another flagpole.
Then the fighting colonel with wise, gloomy eyes said:
- For those killed in this and that war, - and, saluting, he let out
his submachine gun in the clear, free sky of Grozny a long line.