“I don’t blame the mirror if it’s crooked”

“I don’t blame the mirror if it’s crooked”

“I don’t blame the mirror if it’s crooked.” (The epigraph and the plot of N. V. Gogol’s comedy “The Inspector-General”)

The Russian army continues to test on itself numerous reformist ideas: from the reduction of the service life on conscription to outsourcing. Reduction of service life is intended to end such a concept as hazing, and outsourcing should allow the soldier to be freed from duties not related to military affairs.

But as for any embodiment of change in life takes time. And to say that in the army now everything has changed only for the better, at least prematurely. Despite the fact that the external and internal control of the Russian armed forces seems to be gaining momentum, there are still a lot of dark spots that scare young people away from military service.

Recently, a round table was held, which brought together representatives of the Chief Military Prosecutor’s Office, the FSB, the Commissioner for Human Rights, and the public. During the round table issues of inter-ethnic relations in the army were discussed. According to Vladimir Molodykh, who represented the GVP, the national question in our army, if not absent altogether, then the matter goes precisely in this direction. He said that it was the efforts of prosecutors and the FSB that led to the fact that the level of army extremism fell to almost zero.

But if we assume that Mr. Young speaks obvious things, then why so far in those parts where draftees from the North Caucasus Republics serve, the situation is not always smooth. It happens so that if even a small group of Dagestan soldiers appear among the personnel of a part of the military personnel of a unit, then a real ethnic conflict may flare up in units. At the same time, the rights are far from being infringed by Caucasian soldiers, but by Russians, although their numbers are several times higher. What could be the reason for this state of affairs? The main reason is not only the special spiritual closeness of the Caucasian peoples, but also the fact that these guys, coming into the army, are better prepared for it. Already in the same Dagestan, recruitment into the army is almost on a competitive basis: really the healthiest and strongest guys are selected who wish to serve, to work in the law enforcement bodies of their Republic in the future, or to continue service under the contract due to high unemployment in the Caucasus.

The Committee of Soldiers' Mothers even proposes to limit the call of young people from the North Caucasus, or even to cancel it altogether. This option, of course, can reduce the level of interethnic tension, but it will not solve the problem of a complete set of the Russian army.

And besides the situation with national extremism, there are enough problems in our armed forces. As it turned out, the transition to the “annual” military service did not at all save the Armed Forces from such a phenomenon as hazing. We began to talk about hazing in our army not only in Russia, but also abroad, demonstrating all its ugliness.

The situation in the Elan garrison, which is located in the Sverdlovsk region, can be cited as an example of flourishing non-statutory relations. A unique phenomenon for Russia was the appeal of the residents of the village of Araslanovo, who say that as long as there is no order in the Russian army, they will not allow their children to serve. This is due to the fact that in recent years the third soldier, who was drafted into the army from this locality, is returning home to his grave. The last episode took place with private Ruslan Aiderkhanov, the prosecutor's office acknowledged suicide as the cause of death. Aiderkhanov allegedly hung himself on a tree bough. The villagers questioned such a verdict, as Ruslan went to serve with enthusiasm.

Relatives decided to open the zinc coffin. From what they saw for a long time they could not recover: the corpse had no eyes, instead of teeth, prostheses were inserted into the mouth, the whole body of the soldier was bruised, his leg was broken. The representative of the military prosecutor’s office claims that the soldiers suffered such injuries in the process of committing suicide. And he knocked his teeth out to himself, and an eye ... The villagers decided to send the posthumous photos of Ruslan to Anatoly Serdyukov and stand up for their conscripts.

It is worth noting that the Elansky garrison gained notoriety long before the death of Ruslan Aiderkhanov. Not a year goes by without a case of non-statutory relations. Enough in any search engine to type the query "Elansky garrison", as in the top ten will be materials about the "lack of custody" in this part. Then the soldiers beat an officer who did not allow one of them to bring alcohol into the territory of the unit, then the private soldier shot himself in the head during the shooting, then during the same shooting the bullet pleased the soldier directly in the heart. There are also frequent epidemics of pneumonia, which, according to many local residents, occur after the soldiers in the cold force to run half-naked for several hours.

How is going to leave such a situation, the main military department? Measures are being taken that will be aimed at making our army an analogue of the American army. They say that in the armed forces there will have to appear qualified professional sergeants, including the Chief Sergeant, who will bring order to the rank and file level. However, today in sergeant schools about 1200 people are trained, and the need of the armed forces for junior commanders is no less than 50000. It is easy to calculate that at such a pace the Russian army will be staffed with a professional sergeant staff at best in years through 40-45.

If we analyze the situation with contractors, if there were no mass layoffs (about 180 thousand people) a couple of years ago, we would have been prepared to perform the required tasks even more than 50 thousand sergeants. But we have, as always: "to the ground, and then ..."

It is not yet known what forces, but by the 2017 year, the number of contract soldiers and draftees in the Russian army should be leveled. This, according to senior military officials, should fundamentally change the problem with hazing, because professional sergeants who will work for a decent salary in 35 thousand rubles will vigilantly watch the soldiers.

In the media, a certain social advertisement is beginning to appear about how now it will be good for young people to serve in the army. It is said that now they will not need to revenge the parade ground and dig potatoes, they will be spared from the clothes in the kitchen. Instead, a Russian soldier will study the device. weapons, test it in practice. There will be two whole weekends, during which the soldier can go to the city in civilian clothes - to meet with his girlfriend and parents. Leave will be saved, as with an ordinary civilian, and the benefits of enrollment will be enormous. In general, if you believe the Russian Defense Ministry, it will not be a service, but a paradise. Soldiers can only complain about her too short a time ...

However, not everyone enthusiastically perceives information about the prospects of “heavenly service”. As you know, the Constitution of the Russian Federation guarantees those who do not wish to do military service, the passage of alternative civilian service. Since 2004, in connection with the issuance of the relevant law, such a right has been given to those who motivate their desire to go through the ACS. Today, the term AGS is reduced from the initial 3,5 years to 21 a month. At the same time, employees of the military enlistment offices are trying to make it so that by those who have expressed the desire to undergo the ACS, dismiss this desire. The statistics asserts that from 5388 applications submitted by young people about the passage of AHS, about 80% are satisfied. The rest had to take up arms, although they claimed that this was not in their moral principles.

Today, the ACS is a job in not the most prestigious positions: orderlies, janitors, foresters, painters, postmen, etc. At the same time, it should be noted that the same social guarantees are observed in the ACS as in the case of a regular employment contract: salary (average 8 -9 thousand rubles), sick-lists, holidays, etc. I would like to present statistics on the ratio of the number of people serving in regular service and AHS. This ratio is at the level of 130: 1.

The figure eloquently indicates that, nevertheless, Russian guys are trying to give their military duty to their homeland. And the point here is not even that the military registration and enlistment offices impede the passage of ACS.

Yes, the Russian army has many drawbacks, but if we pay attention only to them, then we simply risk leaving our country without any protection at all. Hazing and army extremism are rudiments that need to be disposed of purposefully and systematically. No one-sided law will solve this problem, therefore, there should be a wide public discussion here.
Alexey Volodin
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