The first "Stinger"

The first "Stinger"

President Reagan believed: once the Russians are bogged down in Afghanistan, this should be used. The United States began to actively help the Mujahideen. Our soldiers in the Afghan mountains had to be the first to accept the challenge.

Meltanay Gorge

“In January, 1987 th major Evgeny Sergeev was the deputy for combat training of the commander of the 186 th separate detachment of special purpose GRU GS. But in Afghanistan, the detachment for camouflage was called simply: the 7 Battalion. Engaged in the interception of Dushman caravans. And senior lieutenant Vladimir Kovtun is the most effective team commander. Sergeev had long planned to set up an ambush in the remote Melanai Gorge, a district of Kandahar. And so they flew there for reconnaissance - Sergeyev, Kovtun and a group of senior lieutenant Cheboksarov (the Kovtun guys were preparing to leave for this ambush, and Cheboksary with their own were at hand).

It was as follows: the special forces on two Mi-8 helicopters and two Mi-24 escorts. Sergeev and Kovtun - in the head Mi-8, Sergeev - at the site of the arrow. He was the first to notice a group of armed men downstairs; he gave a line-up from a course gun — indicated a target. Bottom in response - two smoke trails: fired. And at that moment, ours did not understand that this was a “stinger”, they decided simply to carry out a grenade launcher — they were going low, and the “stinger” did not capture low-flying targets. Well ... Escort vehicles remain in the air and take dushmans into the bag with fire, Mi-8 go to the ground. Special Forces landed - and fell under dagger fire. But it was obvious - the "spirits" still caught off guard. The battle began.

Sergeyev commanded - and very efficiently. "Perfume" began to depart. Kovtun noticed how one of them jumped out of hiding and, shooting back, ran along the bed of a dried up stream. Something he was unusual - a strange pipe behind his back, in his hand - an incomprehensible object. Vladimir pulled after him. The gap, however, was very large, the "spirit" could go. And Kovtun is a master of sports in shooting. Vskinul machine. The bullet hit the "spirit" in the back of the head. Kovtun ran up, collected trophies. I already understood that the pipe was from MANPADS ... And the thing that the dead man was holding in his hands was a fashionable briefcase-diplomat. It was impossible to linger, he returned to the helicopter. In the meantime, the fighters found two more such pipes on the ground. In the helicopter, Vladimir carefully examined the pipes, opened the diplomat. On the pipes there is a trademark marking, in a diplomat - the whole set of instructions for combat use ... “Zhenka! This is a “stinger”! - shouted to Sergeev. He turned around, broke into a smile: “Congratulations!” A few months ago, an order was read out in front of the line: those who were the first to capture the Stinger would receive the Hero of the Soviet Union. ”

Unfulfilled promises

I am quoting a tape recording of a conversation with Yevgeny Loginov, the author of the script for the documentary film “Star for Stinger” (AB-TV, directed by A. Miloslavov; the film is scheduled to be broadcast on Zvezda on October, October). From the same screen history tell Vladimir Kovtun himself and the then commander of the 22 th brigade of special forces of the GRU General Staff, lieutenant-general retired Dmitry Gerasimov. The first stinger in Afghanistan and everything that happened around it is the subject of the picture.

The “special importance trophy” was immediately demonstrated at the press conference of the Afghan Foreign Ministry in Kabul as clear evidence of US intervention in Afghanistan. That same night I flew to Moscow to understanding people who had long dreamed of an American novelty to make out to the screw, to study, to compare. Kovtun and Sergeyev presented to the Hero.

But they did not receive the Hero. Why? Today we can only guess. Perhaps someone else decided to get on the lists, but did not work out - “so don't you get to anyone!”. Perhaps the candidates seemed controversial: the special forces - people are sharp, undiplomatic, because of what happens, all sorts of situations happen. The same Sergeev, for example, has an unredeected party search - how is the Hero to give here?

Vladimir Kovtun and Yevgeny Sergeev continued to fight. And then what happened happened - with the army and with the country.

Colonel of the GRU General Staff Reserve V. Kovtun is now a farmer in the Vladimir region. Yevgeny Sergeev died in 2008: old wounds, heart. He was 54 of the year. In memory of Sergeev film and dedicated.

About the history of the capture of the first "stinger" wrote more than once, there is a feature film "Hunters for caravans." So people who are familiar with the Afghan-Special Forces theme, we are now hardly said anything new. But, first, in spite of all the publications, the participants in the operation are still not truly rewarded. To correct an unworthy situation, it is necessary to remind and remind about it. And secondly…

From that side

We repeat - there is a specific story, and there is a background against which it occurred.

This is today Yevgeny Loginov - documentary script writer. In general, he is a reserve colonel, a military translator from Dari, one of the main Afghan languages. Accordingly, from 1987 to 1989, in Afghanistan. For him, the arrival in the documentary film began with participation in various TV shows - at first he was invited as an expert on Afghan topics. Naturally, working on a picture, relied on his knowledge, connections, and opportunities. Therefore, many people from the other side are involved in the film - former Afghan warlords Haji Sadar Aka and Muhamad Aref, CIA officer in 1985 – 1989, Nick Pratt, German cameraman Dittmar Haq, who walked with caravans across the Pakistani border and shot fights with ours. Questions are answered calmly, frankly - so many years have passed, so what!

Therefore, “AN” was interesting to talk with Yevgeny Loginov not only as one of the film’s creators, but also as an Afghan specialist.

- Yevgeny Leonidovich, remember the American movie “Charlie Wilson's War”? A certain congressman, a reveler and a yanker suddenly become imbued with the idea of ​​helping the unfortunate occupied Russian Afghans and spinning a cunning intrigue in order to supply the dushmans with "stingers". And now, Soviet helicopters are falling, blazing, - and there is the end of the war. “Charlie did it!” ...

- I saw a movie, read a book, on which it was shot. The usual Hollywood "fantasy on themes." Yes, it was Wilson - one of the many involved in the story with the "stingers". Yes, the Stingers seriously complicated the flights in the Afghan sky. But in general…

"Stinger" (eng. FIM-92 Stinger) is an American portable anti-aircraft missile system designed to destroy low-flying air targets. Developed by General Dynamics. Adopted in 1981 year. Lightweight and relatively easy to use, the Stinger fires ground-to-air missiles and is in service with almost 30 states.

Before and after

- When we entered 1979 in September in Afghanistan (remember, really at the request of the then Afghan government!), US President Carter said: this is a threat to the world. Reagan, who came to replace him, suggested: since the Russians are there, let's make the war as dear and exhausting for them as possible. The long-term operation "Cyclone" began: financing, supply and training of militants. Materials on it in the US are still classified, but there is literature that can be trusted - for example, the memoirs of Muhamad Yusuf, the former deputy chief of Pakistani intelligence (formally, everything was done with her hands), books by American military expert Lester Grau ... General Yusuf, we By the way, they wanted to take it off - but he died the day before, he was already elderly. But they shot Nick Pratt. This is the person who was directly responsible for the combat training of the Mujahideen. Pratt says bluntly: The Soviets acted in Yemen, Ethiopia, because of you, we had problems in Nicaragua and Granada, you helped the Vietnamese - well, there was a chance to be counted.

“But now the Taliban are beating out of those Stingers on American helicopters ...”

- Well, suppose those “stingers” have long been unsuitable for. They have a two-year battery, and then with proper storage. In general, while reliable facts of the use of MANPADS in Afghanistan have not been recorded. The “Chinook” with the “fur seals” that destroyed Bin Laden, apparently, was shot down from an ordinary grenade launcher. Another thing is that the Americans MANPADS are really very afraid. It is declared to the population: we are ready to buy them from you. They give that kind of money that Afghans simply cannot resist.

- The very fact doesn’t cause you to involuntarily gloating: did the Americans then help the strangers, and now they themselves are stuck in Afghanistan?

- gloating - in relation to whom? To their soldiers and officers? No, it does not. I, while in Afghanistan, met with them. Really sincerely convinced that they are giving freedom to the Afghans. You can shrug, but ... I'm a military man, they are military. A military man will be ordered - he goes where he is told. What gloating here?

Everything is more complicated. Of course, you involuntarily draw parallels. Our army did not lose that war: the troops were solving the assigned tasks, the situation was under control. But the economy of the USSR really could not bear the load. According to my calculations, Afghanistan cost us 33 billion of foreign currency rubles. The dollar then, we recall, cost 60 – 70 cents. Americans now have similar problems. More than a trillion dollars have long been spent on fighting in Afghanistan and Iraq (for them this is a common operation), the Pentagon is asking for billions and billions more! Already calculated: this is the most expensive war in US history after World War II.

But what is significant. A large part of American spending is actually different forms of payments to US citizens (military personnel, etc.) who are there. That is, indirectly, this money will still be returned to the USA. In our country, the lion’s share of billions left was investment in the development of Afghanistan. We were accused of occupation - only the occupation was strange: where did you see the invaders build more 140 objects in the occupied territory? And what! House-building plants, industrial production ... Such is the difference of approaches. Is it good or bad? Let's think.

But what is definitely bad is to forget people like Kovtun and Sergeyev. They did their work honestly.
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  1. +1
    23 September 2011 09: 59
    But they did not receive the Hero I suppose the political officer has advised
  2. panzersoldat
    23 September 2011 11: 08
    Good article, correct.
    1. LESHA pancake
      23 September 2011 13: 47
      Bravo OUR Special Forces!
  3. 0
    24 December 2012 11: 05
    While there were no Stingers in Afghanistan, our helicopters quietly flew at altitude, without entering the DShK destruction zone.
  4. +15
    30 October 2017 21: 28
    10 year movie was good
  5. 0
    April 10 2018 00: 05
    February 15, 2018, died Cheboksarov Vasily Agafonovich,
    31 years ago, a group of fighters led by Vasily Cheboksarov captured the Stinger man-portable air defense systems. These were precisely those American MANPADS with which the Afghan Mujahideen shot down Soviet aircraft in Afghanistan and for the capture of which the command of the 40th Army promised the title of Hero of the Soviet Union. Two days after the battle, Vasily Agafonovich was presented to the title “Hero of the Soviet Union” with the award of the Order of Lenin. But he never received the promised high reward:герой-без-звани
    I am a hero /

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