Military Review

"Mine labyrinth" after 20 years

20
"Mine labyrinth" after 20 years


In the modern world, which has been torn apart in recent years by frequent alarming reports of emerging armed conflicts of an international and non-international nature, the following terms have become firmly rooted and become popular: “mines”, “mine danger”, “explosions on mines”, etc. Several decades ago, they were used only by a narrow circle of specialists and mines did not represent a serious threat to the population of the earth. However, the insidious properties of this type weapons, mass character and promiscuity in its application by many commanders, especially “field” during armed conflicts, high efficiency in defeating equipment, personnel and a powerful psychological impact on people have earned him “black glory” around the world.

The Independent Military Review has repeatedly referred to mine issues on its pages. Opinions and assessments of many competent and independent experts were published. Thus, in the 32 number for 2001, the article “Mine labyrinth” by Major General Adam Nizhalovsky, Deputy Head of the Engineering Forces of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation on combat training and organization of hostilities from 1995 to 1999, an international UN expert and a member of the Government delegation of Russia on the negotiations in Geneva and Vienna in the 1994 – 1996 years to revise the Geneva Convention 1980 on “Inhuman” Weapons.

20 years have passed since the negotiations and the adoption of the amended and clarified Protocol II to this convention, which introduced significant restrictions and bans on the use of mines, especially anti-personnel ones, which are the greatest threat to the civilian population. Many of the “mine states”, including Russia, because of these restrictions unwittingly fell into the “mine labyrinth”, began to look for the best ways out of it. This article attempts to assess the current state of the problem and the steps that have been taken over these 20 years.

CONTRADICTIVE TASKS

The mine problem arose long ago, with the beginning of the wide use of mines in World War II, as well as during subsequent local wars and armed conflicts. It first became aggravated in the 70s of the last century due to the massive mining by the US Army of the territory of Vietnam, which led to numerous civilian casualties and injuries to people. Then the international community responded to this aggravation by adopting a special “mine” Protocol to the Geneva Convention (1980). The second aggravation at the beginning of the 90s was caused by the extensive use of mines during the war in Afghanistan, Angola, Cambodia, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Nicaragua and other countries, which had disastrous consequences for their population and economies.

20 has been separating us for years from the moment of a sharp statement of a mine problem at an international symposium in Montreux (Switzerland), convened at the initiative of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) 21 – 23 in April 1993. And if this symposium discussed various aspects of the use of mines, primarily anti-personnel, as the most dangerous for the civilian population (medical, legal, humanitarian, etc.), then at the next symposium, convened in Geneva 10 – 12 in January 1994, Again, at the initiative of the ICRC, the main focus was on the military issue of the use of anti-personnel mines (APMs), measures to control their use, as well as alternative systems that could replace APMs. The goal was to develop a common opinion of international experts on the mine problem and prepare materials for the working group on the revision of the Geneva Convention 1994 scheduled for February 1980. During these two symposia, a mine problem was formulated by international experts and divided into two main components: military and humanitarian.

From a military point of view, anti-personnel landmines are one of the most effective, simple and cheap types of defensive weapons, operating in automatic or controlled modes for a very long or strictly specified time. According to the experience of the hostilities in Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Chechnya, the loss of personnel on mines amounted to 50 – 70% of the total losses.

For a number of countries in the world, including Russia, mines are still one of the indispensable types of defensive weapons, essential for protecting extended borders, covering sections of the coast and vast uninhabited areas from possible invasion from the outside.

Studies carried out in recent decades in a number of countries (USA, Russia, China, Israel) confirm that abandoning the use of mines will reduce the effectiveness of fire defenses by 20 – 30%, increase the loss of defending troops by 20 – 25% and require significant ( in 1,5 – 2,0 fold) increase in forces and means of defense.

Therefore, from a military point of view, engineering mines in general and anti-personnel landmines in particular are an effective type of defensive weapon, and the refusal to use them is extremely disadvantageous. Replacing this type of weapon with alternative means is technically and technologically difficult, and economically inexpedient.

IMPAIR WITHOUT DISCUSSION

The humanitarian component of the mine problem lies in the fact that the mines hit not only combatants directly on the battlefield, but also pose a great threat to the civilian population. According to the UN and the ICRC in the middle of the 90-ies, over the 110 million mines were installed in the world. On them, weekly 600 – 800 civilians were undermined. This danger persists now. Due to the mine threat, millions of hectares of fertile land are not cultivated. Killed and injured by mine explosions people bring suffering to their families and friends, and they put a heavy burden on the economies of underdeveloped countries.

Thus, on the one hand, mines are one of the effective types of defensive weapons and, according to the requirements of military doctrines and combat regulations of many states, should be used in all types of military operations, especially in defense, as well as to cover important military facilities, sections of the state border, and more. .P. The combat necessity of the mass use of landmines, the actual capabilities of the troops in their use and the enormous multimillion-dollar reserves created determine the importance and vitality of the military component of the mine problem.

On the other hand, the numerous losses of civilians in mines, especially at anti-personnel landmines, the massive injuries and suffering of millions of adults and especially children, the limited ability of the international community to provide them with the necessary assistance and demining of mines to the military aspects of the mine problem confronts its humanitarian component, the importance of which is confirmed by two international legal documents:

- The Geneva Convention 1980 of the Year with its Protocol II (as amended by 3 of May 1996 of the year) and Protocol V “On explosive remnants of war” - 2003 year;

- The Ottawa Treaty (1997), to which the “Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of APMs and on Their Destruction” (hereinafter - the Ottawa Convention 1997 of the Year) was adopted as an annex.

If the first document was developed with the active participation of our delegation and the security interests of the country were not infringed upon it, the second was adopted without the participation of Russia and is currently, in our opinion, unacceptable. Despite the fact that the Ottawa Convention was adopted by more than 160 states, it is not universal, since the main countries - producers of mines and the possessors of their stocks (the USA, Russia, China, India, Pakistan, Israel, etc.) did not join it.

In this situation, Russia and its Armed Forces should adhere to the requirements in this area of ​​only one international document - the Geneva Convention 1980.

REVISION OF THE CONVENTION

The main purpose of the revision of Protocol II of the Geneva Convention 1980, and at the same time the attempts to solve the mine problem was to find a reasonable balance between its military and humanitarian aspects.

How did this document come about, what compromises did our delegation have to make, and how did you manage to defend the positions of principle? After 20 years we will try to objectively highlight these and other issues.

In 1994, the UN Secretary-General, at the initiative of France, established the Group of International Governmental Experts to prepare the Conference, at which it was supposed to adopt revised Protocol II, as well as the new, fourth Protocol to this convention - on laser weapons. The group of international experts from Russia initially included three specialist officers: Colonels A.V. Nizhalovsky, V.V. Kudryavtsev and A.A. Gurvich. In 1995, the group has expanded. Experts from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation and other departments were identified. Practically all of them, in accordance with the order of the government of the Russian Federation, became members of the governmental delegation of Russia at the negotiations in Geneva and Vienna. For the preparation of the Conference, a group of international experts held four sessions in 1994 – 1995.

In between sessions here, in Russia, the achieved results were analyzed and materials were prepared for the upcoming negotiations. According to the decision of Colonel-General Vladimir Kuznetsov, Chief of the Engineer Forces of the Defense Ministry of the Russian Federation, who was also a member of the government delegation, the officers of the NIV Defense Ministry of the Russian Federation, scientists of the Military Engineering Academy and the TsNII of 15 were involved in this work. D.M. Karbysheva, as well as specialists from institutes and enterprises of the military-industrial complex of the country. Consultations with specialists from CIS countries who took part in the negotiations were organized jointly with the Foreign Ministry of the Russian Federation to work out agreed positions. Twice in Moscow, meetings were held with the US delegation to discuss issues of principle.

Despite the efforts being made, within four sessions it was not possible to work out an agreed text of the Protocol and agree on a number of policy issues: the timing of the transition period that Russia proposed (our delegation proposed 15 – 17 years, and Western countries either rejected the transitional period or agreed to 3 – 5 years); issues of mine transfer and monitoring compliance with the Protocol; The main parameters of the Technical Annex to the Protocol on the detectability of mines, the timing and reliability of the mechanisms of self-destruction and self-deactivation.

Held in Vienna from September 25 to October 13 1995, the International Conference on the Revision of the Geneva Convention 1980 did not reach its goal and, in fact, was thwarted. Until the last day, there were heated debates on uncoordinated issues, evening and night meetings of experts were held, but consensus was not reached, despite the great efforts of the President of the Conference, Johan Molander (Sweden). True, October 13 Conference adopted the text of Protocol IV "On Blinding Laser Weapons", which was developed for the first time and did not cause any particular disagreement among the negotiators.

POSITIONS EXPENDED

The UN Secretary-General decided to suspend the Conference in Vienna, continue work on Protocol II and its Technical Annex during the resumed session of the 15 – 19 Expert Group in January and complete it at the second 22 Conference in April - 3 in May in Geneva.

At the session of the Expert Group, it was not possible to bring the parties' positions closer on uncoordinated issues. The delegation of Russia clearly fulfilled the instructions of the country's leadership and did not make concessions. On many issues, we were supported by the delegations of China and India, and on some by the United States, Ukraine, Pakistan, and others. Convinced of the low efficiency of the session, Chairman Johan Molander offered delegations options for package agreements that dealt with all of the most sensitive positions. Upon arrival in Moscow, these options were carefully worked out in the General Staff of the RF Armed Forces, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Rosvooruzheniye, the Ministry of Defense Industry and other interested departments. Taking into account these studies, the instructions of the delegation of the Russian Federation of April 18 of 1996, which were fully implemented during the resumed Conference, are formulated. None of the mines of Soviet or Russian production was not prohibited by the updated Protocol and has not been modified or destroyed. A transition period of nine years was introduced to bring new requirements into line with the development of qualitatively new mines. Accepted requirements for self-destruction and self-deactivation of mines should have pushed our scientists and industry to switch to mines with electronic fuses and to develop a new element base for them.

The adoption of Protocol II, as amended by 3 in Geneva in May, did not lead to a resolution of the mine problem, although it was a very important and timely step in that direction. The delegations of many states, including Russia, were satisfied with the results of the negotiations and the adopted documents. Unfortunately, a number of Western and developing countries expressed dissatisfaction with Protocol II. The UN Secretary General Boutros Boutros-Ghali also expressed his dissatisfaction with the results. In his message to the Conference participants, he noted that the revised Protocol does not fully reflect the interests of the international community. "He disappoints us." We have not agreed on the mechanisms of inspections on the prohibition of the supply of mines. Speaking of “smart” mines, we forget that they are all anti-human. And as a summary: “All mines must be eliminated now.”

In these words, the main world tendency is formulated, the main direction of resolving the mine problem and its ultimate goal is a complete and comprehensive ban on mines as a type of weapon (obviously, first anti-personnel, and eventually all the others). Of course, the military component of the mine problem for some time will be able to delay the date of this goal with its "authority", real stocks of mines, the capabilities of the troops to install them, as well as economic aspects. But, apparently, the complete elimination of mines will eventually occur inevitably, because it expresses the will of the majority of the population of the Earth, supported by the UN, powerful anti-mine movements and non-governmental organizations.

The question arises: what about the military need to use mines? Or has mankind already won the war as a socio-political phenomenon and is developing in a global world? Something is hard to believe in the possibility of this, even in the distant future. So what is the way out of the "mine deadlock", or rather from the "mine labyrinth"? Of course, it exists and, in our opinion, boils down to two possible areas of activity: the cardinal and the evolutionary.

The cardinal direction involves the complete prohibition of mines as a type of weapon, the rejection of their development, production, stockpiling, transfer and use. Its implementation is possible through accession to the Ottawa Convention 1997 of the year and other similar documents of all states, without exception, including Russia.

The evolutionary direction provides for further harmonization of the military and humanitarian components of the mine problem.

It is the second, evolutionary direction that was chosen and proposed by the Group of Governmental Experts to the leadership of our country in the middle of the 90-s as the only reasonable and expedient for modern Russia. Over the 20 years, this decision has been fully confirmed by the practice of life. Therefore, even now the country's military-political leadership must refrain from taking crucial decisions and continue the movement in an evolutionary way.

By the way, American experts estimated that joining the Ottawa Convention would cost the United States a round amount — more than 30 billion dollars (destroying mines during four years, demining all mines they had installed during 10 years, developing alternative means, organizing their production and accumulation of required reserves). The cost of similar works calculated by us in Russia was several times lower, but in 1997, the country simply did not have that kind of money. And now this amount is too heavy for the economy and the military budget of the country.

POSITION OF RUSSIA

The analysis shows that, by virtue of its geopolitical position, military-political, military-technical and economic reasons, Russia must adhere to a second, evolutionary direction when it leaves the “mine labyrinth”, which, in our opinion, includes a number of realistic ways:

- full coverage of all countries of the world, either by Protocol II, as amended by 3 of May 1996 of the year, or by the Ottawa Convention of 1997 of the year. Accurate and full compliance with the requirements of these two documents will force the first group of countries to limit and “humanize” the use of mines, primarily anti-personnel mines, and the second group - to destroy their stocks and refuse to use them altogether. Humanity will only benefit from such a decision, since the volume of mining will sharply decrease, civilian casualties will decrease, as well as the costs of treatment of disabled people and humanitarian demining;

- gradual abandonment of anti-personnel landmines and their replacement by alternative means of non-lethal impact. In this case, the disposal of existing stocks of mines should be carried out according to plan, at no extra cost. Parallel to this process, the development, production and stockpiling of alternative means should also be planned, as planned. This path is long, but true and least expensive;

- gradual transfer of some restrictions agreed upon for anti-personnel landmines to anti-tank mines, and subsequently to other types of mines (for example, on non-detectability, registration, transfers, etc.). This will allow “humanizing” the mine problem, without giving up mines as a type of defensive weapon in the foreseeable future;

- expansion and intensification of humanitarian demining programs under the auspices of the UN and other international, regional and national organizations. Search for the necessary funds for these purposes by all reasonable means, connecting various funds, associations, movements and non-governmental organizations;

- intensification of the negotiation process on mines, the search for new compromise solutions and approaches, the gradual expansion of the scope of restrictions and prohibitions for mines. At the same time, attempts to impose tough and quick bans on countries that, due to their national interests and peculiarities, are not yet ready for cardinal changes in this area are counterproductive.

20 years have passed since the development of the updated Protocol II and 10 years since its ratification and entry into force for Russia. What has changed during this time in our country and its Armed forces? What spheres of these two events had an impact and what effect did it have? What has been done to resolve the mine problem, and what is expected in the future?

First of all, it should be noted that this period was productive in the military-political and diplomatic fields. Of the 115 States parties to the Geneva 1980 Convention, 98 became parties to Amended Protocol II, including the main “mine” powers, which confirms its importance and universality. Unfortunately, a number of countries, including those with an unstable military-political situation, still remain outside of Protocol II (Burundi, Djibouti, Lesotho, Togo, Uganda, etc.). This can not disturb the global community.

Since 1994, Russia has a moratorium on the transfer of non-detectable anti-personnel mines, as well as mines that are not equipped with self-destruct mechanisms. Since 1998, the production of anti-personnel mines, which are the main source of civilian casualties and injuries, have been completely discontinued.

Since 1997 of the year, in accordance with the directive of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, the main provisions of Amended Protocol II are being studied in all military educational institutions of Russia and in military departments of civilian universities of the country. They were strictly observed and respected by our troops during armed conflicts and peacekeeping operations.

In 2001, for the first time, the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation issued a Manual on International Humanitarian Law for the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation, where the main requirements for the use of anti-personnel landmines in accordance with the requirements of Protocol II are defined. The new edition of this document, developed in 2010 – 2011, has been retained.

At the initiative of the Russian Federation, Protocol V to the Geneva Convention 2003 of the year “On explosive remnants of war” was adopted and ratified in 1980, which was another step towards harmonizing the military and humanitarian components of the mine problem. This Protocol refers to the explosive remnants of war two groups of ammunition:

- explosive ordnance that has been initiated, filled, cocked or otherwise prepared for use but not exploded (unexploded ordnance);

- explosive ordnance that was not used during an armed conflict (abandoned explosive ordnance).

Explosive ammunition includes artillery shells, mortar shells, hand grenades and other weapons - except for mines, booby traps and other devices defined by Protocol II.

December 7 2004, President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin signed Federal Law No. 158-ФЗ “On ratification of the Protocol on the prohibition or restriction of the use of mines, booby traps and other devices as amended by 3 on May 1996 (Protocol II as amended by 3 May 1996 of the Year), annexed to the Convention on the Prohibition or Restriction of the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons, Which May be Deemed to Be Excessive Damage or to Have a Non-Selective Effect.

The significant humanitarian potential laid down in Protocol II is realized in the development of technologies for the protection of civilians from possible threats of mine weapons, as well as technologies for detecting, neutralizing and destroying explosive objects.

These and other issues related to the operation of the Protocol are annually discussed by the States Parties to the Convention, including during the expert meetings on the amended Protocol II, which are currently held on a regular basis with the active participation of Russian specialists.

At the initiative of our experts under amended Protocol II, the issues of reducing the risk of improvised explosive devices are raised. The focus is on technical cooperation and the regular exchange of information between the participating States in the field of the detection and destruction of these devices. In addition, measures are being discussed aimed at preventing the prerequisites for their “construction” of military explosives, ammunition and other military equipment.

Further improvement of the effectiveness of the implementation of the provisions of the amended Protocol II is possible in terms of the development of demining technologies. Russian experts have gained considerable experience in the field of humanitarian mine clearance. In the past few years alone, they have defused more than 100 thousand explosive items in almost all 20 countries around the world.

The experience of the Engineers of Russia in the complete demining of the terrain in the areas of the counter-terrorist operation in the territories of the Chechen Republic and the Republic of Ingushetia is unique. From March 2012 of the year to September, 2014 of the year was tested around 5,5 thousand hectares of agricultural and forest land, objects of the economy, private households. During this period, sappers detected and destroyed about 8 thousand explosive objects. The efficiency of work has increased significantly due to the use of a special robotic demining complex “Uran-6” and the newest protective suit of the sapper “Sokol”.

As a party to Amended Protocol II since 2004, Russia strictly complies with its provisions and regularly provides information on the implementation of its provisions in the annual national report.

Summing up, we can say that the mine problem, which has long been turned into a “mine labyrinth,” exists and regularly reminds itself to all of humanity. Currently, there are two ways out of this labyrinth: the cardinal and the evolutionary. When choosing them, we must remember that moving on the path to a world without a mine weapon must be realistic and phased, without setting unattainable goals. Only in this case, this process will be able to ensure stability and continuity. In our opinion, Amended Protocol II plays an effective and ever-increasing role in this process. Based on this document, participating in its improvement and setting an example in fulfilling its requirements, Russia is able to get out of the “mine labyrinth” with minimal losses.

At least the events of recent years, the real progress achieved and the efforts that are being made in this direction by the current command of the Engineering Troops of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation are a kind of guarantee for optimistic forecasts.
Author:
Originator:
http://nvo.ng.ru/armament/2014-10-10/4_mines.html
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  1. svp67
    svp67 11 October 2014 14: 08
    +1
    I am afraid that the inhabitants of Ukraine will get acquainted with this problem "in all its undisguised glory" ...
    1. Giant thought
      Giant thought 11 October 2014 17: 22
      +1
      The mine war in Ukraine is in full swing, and when it stops there, only God knows.
    2. The comment was deleted.
    3. dyremar 66
      dyremar 66 11 October 2014 21: 06
      0
      from an article by Gorbachev’s defeatist scent the chemical weapons blew mines now and the nuclear sting will be torn out to the delight of pi .. ru clinton and kazsl bzdi-jinsky ...
  2. raid14
    raid14 11 October 2014 14: 31
    +1
    Russia with its territory and the number of protected objects with controlled minefields, it is high time to switch to the production of high-tech mines equipped with electronic remote fuses with combined sensors (volumetric, infrared, shock) with the functions of non-extraction and self-destruction.
    1. Cat man null
      Cat man null 12 October 2014 00: 01
      0
      There is (a long time ago) such a hunt, for example)
  3. Stanislav 1978
    Stanislav 1978 11 October 2014 14: 33
    +3
    The article is about regular ammunition, the production and storage of which can be controlled. No one will be able to take home-made devices under control. The simplicity of manufacture and installation will not allow to abandon this type of weapon. And if there is self-liquidation on regular power supplies, then no one will bother with this on IEDs.
  4. Iline
    Iline 11 October 2014 14: 43
    +4
    Only in this year in Chechnya, mine clearance work was fully completed, how much time will be required for Ukraine - only God knows.
    In general, there were plenty of pacifists at all times. Only effective weapons instead of anti-ballistic missiles are not yet visible on the horizon. If you need to reliably protect the guarded object, but you don’t have enough strength, then this is the best option. Although, depending on the situation, these can be simple signal mines and mines with electric detonators that are put into combat position at the right time instead of anti-aircraft mines at the right time removed from it.
    The damage to civilians is caused only by the irresponsibility of the commanders on whose command and in what places they are installed.
  5. gunter_laux
    gunter_laux 11 October 2014 15: 08
    0
    The article is good, but somewhat "heavyweight", not every reader will get to the end of the article. Per topic +
  6. pensioner
    pensioner 11 October 2014 15: 47
    0
    My friend worked in the police in the Novgorod region in the late 80s. in the city of Lyubytino. Once they drove out a village (sort of by truck ...) and were blown up. Not too much. It turned out on a German mine during WWII. The military found a few more later ... He said that the soldiers told them that all the mines were in working condition (count it for almost 50 years ...) and they were very lucky to be alive ...
  7. Tyumen
    Tyumen 11 October 2014 15: 55
    +3
    * gradual abandonment of anti-missile defense and their replacement with alternative non-lethal means *
    What is it like? Traps or pits with stakes? Effective weapons are hard to give up.
    1. Aleksey_K
      Aleksey_K 11 October 2014 16: 56
      +1
      Most of the explosions on antipersonnel mines are not lethal, but crippling. As a rule, it tears off the foot and wounds with shrapnel. As a result, a huge army of disabled people is formed in the country, and this is what worries, in fact, all countries. And if someone was killed, then Stalin said: "... there is no man - no problem." Machine guns kill and injure even more, for some reason this does not bother anyone. And a bullet hitting a bone is a definite amputation. Mines are worse than machine guns in that they kill and maim in peacetime. And lethality has nothing to do with it.
      1. Tyumen
        Tyumen 11 October 2014 18: 54
        0
        Quote: Алексей_К
        But mortality has nothing to do with it.

        Well, I didn’t write an article.
        Quote: Алексей_К
        even Stalin said: "... no man - no problem"

        Stalin did not say this. These are the words of Rybakov. * Children of the Arbat *, sort of.
  8. Aleksey_K
    Aleksey_K 11 October 2014 16: 39
    +2
    Quote: Iline
    The damage to civilians is caused only by the irresponsibility of the commanders on whose command and in what places they are installed.

    What kind of irresponsibility we can talk about during hostilities. The choice is simple. Either your personnel will die, or you will protect them in a dangerous direction from the enemy. And the positions are chosen not by the platoon or company commander, but at the level of the formation or unit. And they do not care that before the war everyone was grazing sheep, or cows, or sowing, or this village. By the way, the enemy also doesn't care about the future. It's just that minefield layouts should be saved for later clearance. And if the commander has no time to do this, then blaming him is also pointless. The enemy will not wait for you to draw up a diagram of the minefield and ask: "Well, I sketched it, can I attack?" Then the commander died and the result was an unknown minefield.
  9. saygon66
    saygon66 11 October 2014 17: 01
    0
    - Why give up such an effective weapon? Often, the use of mines allows you to "level the odds" with an enemy superior in numbers and weapons ...
  10. family tree
    family tree 11 October 2014 17: 03
    +2
    The most disgusting thing is antipersonnel, pressure and stretch marks. They put everyone to whom not laziness, and not any maps of minefields. The sappers will sweat. what Sadly, however.
  11. TOR2
    TOR2 11 October 2014 17: 45
    +3
    We cannot refuse this type of weapon. Considering the balance of power with NATO, a mine is a very necessary thing. Let the enlightened West know "gifts" for them, if something happens, will be everywhere.
    1. family tree
      family tree 11 October 2014 18: 23
      +3
      Quote: TOR2
      Let the enlightened West know "gifts" for them, if something happens, will be everywhere.

      In-in, give us only the will, we’ll make such a lawlessness, mother do not grieve
      By the beginning of the defensive battle, sappers in the defense zone of the Central Front had installed 237000 anti-tank and 162000 anti-personnel mines, 305 kilometers of wire fences. About 600000 mines were installed by sappers of the Voronezh Front. Near Kursk, slow-motion mines, radio-controlled mines, were used.
      In advance, mobile units and fencing groups (POSs) were created. So called the relatively small units of sappers, which were provided with a stock of mines, transport and had the task of quickly moving forward to face the erupting enemy and blocking the way for tanks with minefields. It is clear that the success of the case in this case was decided by the speed and ability to correctly identify tank hazardous areas. As a rule, POSs acted in conjunction with artillerymen. But it also happened that sappers had to independently engage in combat with enemy tanks and emerge victorious

      http://www.bratishka.ru/archiv/2011/3/2011_3_10.php
      1. family tree
        family tree 11 October 2014 18: 40
        +1
        Unusual difficulties were delivered to the Germans by the so-called impudent mining. In the midst of the offensive, the shabby Russian truck suddenly stopped in front of the German tanks that were attacking, and several unshaven personalities of a reprehensible type began busily digging something into the ground right on the road.

        “Hey, hey, what are you doing there,” the head Tiger shouted indignantly.

        “You don’t see it — we carry out road works,” the senior Russian answered impudently, continuing to dig neat holes.

        “What are you burying in the ground?”

        - I do not know. We were ordered - we are burying.

        - It's outrageous! By the way, we are advancing here! We have a schedule! We should go to the village at 12:30, as it is called ... "Goryeloe".

        - And we have a plan. Dig out forty holes before 12:15.

        - We will complain! Who is your commander?

        “Military secret,” Russian sappers answered maliciously.

        - Well, guys, let's do it in a good way. Is there a detour?

        - Of course there is. Look at that beam, - somehow the Russian agreed too quickly.

        The Tigers left in the indicated direction only in order to return in half an hour:

        - Guys what are you? It’s also impossible! There are some mines! Dietrich, got out!

        “Oh, men, I'm sorry,” the crystal clear tears of remorse rolled in the eyes of a Russian sapper. - Again, we got something wrong. In any case, we are done here, so you can safely go.

        - Break a leg! - shouted Russian sappers, getting into the truck.

        - To hell! - Tigers answered amicably.

        “To him, to him, darling,” the Russians muttered, turning behind the nearest knoll.

        http://flibusta.net/b/216362/read
        1. pensioner
          pensioner 11 October 2014 20: 49
          +1
          laughing good
          Thanks Vova! hi Neighing.
          1. family tree
            family tree 11 October 2014 20: 57
            +3
            Duc, we are sappers. people of humorous what where are the clowns laughing
  12. Gray 43
    Gray 43 11 October 2014 17: 58
    +1
    Mines will serve as an effective weapon for both the army and the IAF for a long time
  13. Stoler
    Stoler 11 October 2014 23: 44
    0
    On all production mines to put self-destructive.