Military Review

May 21 in Russia celebrates the day of the military translator

Today, 21 May, Russia celebrates the Day of the military translator. This date was chosen for the holiday not by chance. 21 May 1929, Deputy Commissar for Military and Maritime Affairs and Chairman of the Soviet Union Revision Council, Joseph Unshlicht, signed a decree “On establishing the rank for the staff of the Red Army“ Military Translator ”. The order, in fact, legitimized the profession existing for many years. She was in the Russian army for many centuries. In Russia, this holiday began to celebrate the year 2000. The initiators of its establishment were the Alumni Club of the Military Institute of Foreign Languages ​​(VIIA).

May 21 Day deserves the attention of all military translators. And I must stand on a par with professional holidays of servicemen: the Day of the artilleryman, tankman, or representatives of other types of troops. The importance and relevance of the profession of a military translator should not be underestimated. They are needed by any army in the world at any time. Still would! After all, the vast majority of wars in the world stories It was conducted between countries and peoples speaking different languages!

Starting from the era of Ancient Russia, which was located at the crossroads of intercivilizational trade routes, since the organization of the campaigns of the Slavic troops to Byzantium, the Polovtsy and the Pechenegs, our Fatherland possessed enough people who knew the languages ​​and dialects of the peoples bordering on us. In the period of the formation of the Moscow state, tasks in the field of foreign policy were only complicated. The state felt the need for experienced specialists who would not only speak foreign languages, but also know the traditions, customs, customs of certain countries and peoples. History has preserved for us the name of the clerk Dmitry Gerasimov, who was fluent in German, Latin and Greek, taking part in the work of the famous Greek monk Maxim the Greek in translating sacred books into Russian. He showed himself on the diplomatic scene.

May 21 in Russia celebrates the day of the military translator

One of the first institutions in our country that was in charge of international relations was the Ambassadorial Order, which appeared in Russia in the 16 century. The staff of the Ambassadorial Order included translators. At the end of the 17 century, 17 interpreters and 22 translators were on his staff. They were engaged in a wide range of translations of both diplomatic and military nature. Until a certain point in time, this practice was uniform and had no particular differences.

The country's first educational institution, which was engaged in training military linguists, became officer courses, which were opened at the training department of Oriental languages ​​of the Asian department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The courses were open 19 Nov. 1885 of the year. Then they were taught Turkish, Arabic, Persian, Tatar and French, and in 1907, English was added to this set. Such a selection of languages ​​was not accidental. It was associated with the expansion of Russian borders (especially in Central Asia and the Far East). It is worth noting that the courses immediately became quite popular. Sometimes the competition among the officers who wanted to enroll in them reached the 10 people in place. The translating officers who completed these courses went to serve in the Caucasus and in the countries of Asia, and they also served in the territory of the newly annexed territories of the Asian military districts as officers of border guards, bailiffs, heads of counties.

Another major step, which accelerated the formation of a full-fledged personnel reserve of military translators in the country (in connection with the priority direction of the foreign policy of the Russian Empire), was the opening of the Eastern Institute in Vladivostok in 1899. Here, in compulsory French and English, the program for the training of Orientalists included the study of Japanese, Chinese, Korean and other foreign languages, depending on their choice of major specialization. In those years, special courses of foreign languages, which were organized at the headquarters of military districts, made a no less significant contribution to the language training of the personnel of the Russian army.

But the modern history of military translators in our country begins with the Order of the Revolutionary Military Council of the USSR No. 125 of 21 in May 1929 of the year. In addition to the appearance of military translators in the Red Army, this order stipulated the creation in the Soviet Union of a special system for training military linguists. The training of military translators was largely due to the increasing international tension at that time. The training was not in vain. In the years of the Great Patriotic War, a very heavy workload fell on military translators. Specialists of this military profession have participated in all subsequent wars and conflicts that our country has waged, including in recent years.

Nowadays, a military translator is a sought-after and difficult profession. Since, in addition to fluency in a foreign language, it presupposes the presence of deep operational-tactical knowledge, the ability to analyze the evolving situation and draw sound and correct conclusions. Only if these conditions are met can a military translator be able to effectively solve his immediate tasks and conduct interrogation of prisoners of war. In addition, personnel military translators are assigned the task of translating and reading various trophy documents — workers and reporting cards, summaries, orders, orders, soldier’s books and letters from soldiers, as well as various instructions.

Currently, military translators are trained by the Military Institute of Foreign Languages ​​(VIIA), which today is part of the staff structure of the Military University of the Ministry of Defense (VU MO) as faculties.

Based on materials from open sources

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  1. aszzz888
    aszzz888 21 May 2015 07: 00
    "And if the translator is a lady,
    Yes, not bad, let's say directly!
    Then write - horrible! "

    Happy holiday of military translators!
  2. uizik
    uizik 21 May 2015 07: 58
    Very necessary. Praise and honor to them!
  3. Eugene
    Eugene 21 May 2015 08: 02
    Happy holiday, linguists. My mother was a translator, at the command office of the city of Koenigsbruck (GSVG). She told interesting things. And yet. I recommend the film-Russian translation. 8 episodes. Educational film, in the subject. Happy holiday!
    1. Starover_Z
      Starover_Z 21 May 2015 22: 23
      Quote: eugene
      I recommend the film-Russian translation. 8 episodes. An educational film, in the subject.

      The film is good, but the book is much stronger. Still, the author, Andrei Bakonin (Konstantinov) is a military translator by training himself and has been on business trips abroad by profession.
      He can be said to reveal the essence of the modern military translator, whose business is not only to deal with simple translations, but also to know the countries, the customs of peoples, their life. To help our military experts in their work abroad, to avoid conflicts in foreign countries and to establish friendly relations!
      Happy holiday, comrades Translators! And good luck in your field !!!
      1. Aleksandr72
        Aleksandr72 22 May 2015 09: 14
        The film is strong, with a well-chosen cast. The book is also very good, unless you remember that this is just the first volume from the cycle of books "Gangster Petersburg", where each subsequent book is worse than the previous one and all together is much worse than the first - about a military translator who later became a journalist. Even before Konstantinov's book, I read a documentary book - the memoirs of a military translator from among the foreign language students sent for an internship. True, this one first ended up in Syria, and then in Ethiopia, but everything is very similar, the same problems, the same simple joys and even the nickname of the advisers is the same - habirs, but there is no excess a little implausible action. Unfortunately, I don't remember the title of the book.
        All military translators - with their professional holiday and a wish to better learn English, especially in combination with Amer army jargon. Time is such that this knowledge can be useful in practice at any time. Well, you understand why wink
  4. Gypsy girl
    Gypsy girl 21 May 2015 09: 51
    Congratulations on the holiday!
  5. maai
    maai 21 May 2015 10: 16
    People who know more than one language professionally deserve respect. And good translators are generally a special alloy of skills and qualities.
    Congratulations on the day of the military translator !!! love
  6. yurgis68
    yurgis68 21 May 2015 11: 25
    A very necessary and heroic profession without exaggeration, the word is a strong weapon. Honor and praise to you military translators are people of word and deed. Happy Holidays and success in your difficult but very necessary work !!! (The film "Russian translation" is my favorite film, but the book is better soldier )
  7. 16112014nk
    16112014nk 21 May 2015 12: 40
    It’s good to be a military translator in Russia! Igor Ivanovich Sechin can tell you about this and confirm his son Ivan Igorevich Sechin.
  8. Aleks tv
    Aleks tv 21 May 2015 13: 14
    My congratulations to the polyglot.
    I myself am in a foreign ... well, I remember the interrogation of a prisoner of war, and FSE ...)))

    In general, then:
    Let the bourgeoisie teach Russian, it will be easier for them in captivity!
    And then they don’t shoot either cigarettes or ask for a bread really, heartfelt.

    And inscriptions in Europe are best done just in case in Russian, so as not to rewrite later.

    But seriously - respect for the masters of the language.
  9. Thomas
    Thomas 21 May 2015 13: 54
    Happy Holidays!
    For mutual understanding with our Western "partners"!
  10. 54RG3
    54RG3 21 May 2015 20: 24
    Congratulations to all my colleagues!

    Well, and a professional joke

    Interrogation of a prisoner of war.
    -What yz yer name?
    -John Smith
    (Punch in the teeth with a fist, bloodthirsty everywhere)
    -Watiz yer name? !!
    -John Smith
    (Once again, from shoulder to teeth - on! Teeth, drooling, bloodsucking fly right up to the wall)
    - WAT YZ YOR NAME, damn it? !!!!
    - (all tears, bloodshots and snot) My name is John Smith (sob-sob)
    The officer comes in:
    -What's going on here?
    - Comrade Lieutenant Colonel, he pissed me off - I ask him for the third time "How many tanks do you have", but he does not admit
  11. Oman 47
    Oman 47 21 May 2015 21: 01
    Gentlemen translators, happy holiday!
    When he served, the head of the RO had a decent knowledge and use of 6 (six) languages, of which 5 were complex eastern
    - Farsi, Pashto, Dari, Urdu, Chinese.
    Thanks to their appearance, everyone recognized for theirs, okromyu Chinese.
    Not everyone is given such a talent.
  12. Oman 47
    Oman 47 22 May 2015 01: 41
    We must congratulate Zhirik - he is from the cohort of translators.