Ukraine is the birthplace of masochists. Not only because the writer Leopold von Sacher-Masoch, a famous researcher of this ambiguous phenomenon, was born and lived there (in Lviv there is even a plaque on his house, and there is a small museum in it), which colorfully described all this indecency in many of his works, including in the novel "Venus in Furs". But also because rarely where there are so many statesmen - politicians and military leaders, who can and willingly loosen the old sovereign wounds, feel special pleasure from beating their unfortunate country with heavy whips and without any personal gain it’s ridiculous to put it in front of the world by the public in an unsightly, if not more harsh, light. And that's what happened.
BROKEN FROM STATE OF PIECES
Vice-Admiral Sergei Haiduk, commander of the country's naval forces, told the Fleet of Ukraine newspaper that Kiev is going to sell the unfinished Ukraine-launched missile cruiser, which is supporting the quay wall of the Nikolaev Communist 61 Shipyard. The admiral said: “The cruiser“ Ukraine ”is the price of the construction of the state, the yogi will be realized, and the nightmare of the real ships will be on ships and ships”. Translated into Russian, it sounds like this: "The cruiser" Ukraine "is a piece broken off from the state, it will be sold, and the proceeds from its implementation will be spent on building new ships and boats."
Calling the missile cruiser “a piece broken off from the state” for the admiral is well worth it. But let's not find fault with the kind of vocabulary of the foreign "sea wolf". In the end, he speaks as he thinks. And he thinks - as he says.
But what is this “broken piece” - the cruiser “Ukraine”? For those who are not in the subject, I will explain. The above-named ship, which bore the name "Admiral" "in girlhood" fleet Lobov ”, belongs to a series of its own, as they say in the West, sistersheep - cruisers of the project 1164 class“ Atlant ”. The leader among them was the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet missile cruiser "Moscow" (the first name is "Glory"). The Russian Navy has two more such ships - the flagship of the Pacific Fleet missile cruiser Varyag and the missile cruiser Northern Fleet Marshal Ustinov.
Lobov, like his brothers, was supposed to carry on his 16 aboard the P-500 anti-ship supersonic cruise missiles P-550 "Basalt" with a range of 64 km and the ability to be equipped with a nuclear warhead (therefore these ships were often called aircraft carrier killers). It also planned to deploy 300 anti-aircraft missiles of the Fort complex (the analog of the ground C-144), two Osa-M medium-range missile complexes, 6000 missiles of the two complexes of the missile-bomb device RBU-130, torpedo and artillery armament (two five-pipe torpedo tubes, one 30 mm gun and six 630 mm AK-75М guns). None of these weapons on the "Ukraine", ready, according to various estimates and statements by official Ukrainian persons, could not be established on 80 – 96 – XNUMX%.
In fact, the fate of the cruiser "Ukraine" in some of its details recalls history with the Mistral helicopter-docks ordered by Russia from France. But if the happy fate of the Mistral was hindered by the desire of French President Francois Hollande to please his overseas partners and NATO allies, then in the history of the cruiser Ukraine, so characteristic of the short history of the new state on the western border of our country was the utter lack of thought of its politicians and their frank greediness and exorbitant greed.
The Admiral of the Lobov fleet stood on the completion of the Nikolaev factory in those sad days when the Soviet Union collapsed. According to the agreement between the three leaders of Russia, Ukraine and Belarus, everything that remained in their countries after a divorce from the USSR should belong to the state where it was at that moment. The fate of the Black Sea Fleet in Crimea was decided later. And the last in the series of an unfinished 1164 missile cruiser suddenly became Ukrainian. Kiev, by and large, was not needed under any weather conditions.
First of all, Ukraine did not have a sufficient number of specialists ready to fly and operate such a ship. Secondly, for him there was no berthing infrastructure and the required number of escort ships — three or four frigates and a corvette. And, thirdly - and this is the decisive factor - practically all the weapons intended for this cruiser were made at Russian defense enterprises. The main shock force of “Lobov” - the anti-ship missile system “Basalt”, under which missile shafts and other equipment were installed, shoots, as we already know, at 550 km. And according to international rules, only missiles with a range of not more than 1991 km can be delivered abroad (after 300, Ukraine became Russia abroad). Without the "Basalt" a cruiser, like a man without ... (well, you know without what) is a hopeless disabled person who is not capable of using what is called, for its intended purpose.
To sell such a ship to any country - to China or India, ready, in theory, to buy such a cruiser, is also impossible. Nobody needs him without Basalt. And to create a new rocket for existing mines with a range of up to 300 km, as, for example, Moscow and Delhi did with the Onyx anti-ship missiles, which was jointly called the BrahMos, no one was going. Probably because the game was not worth the candle - it was too expensive.
Russia was ready to buy an unfinished Lobov at the beginning of the 90s of the last century. Since at that time neither she nor Kiev had any money, the Moscow proposal sounded like this: you are completing a cruiser, we take it from you on account of the debt that has accumulated for the gas delivered to the country. But Ukraine did not accept this option. For the gas supplied, she finally agreed to give the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet "Moscow", who had been repaired in the Nikolaevsky plant 61 of Communard, and demanded currency for Lobova. And the cost stated such that there was nothing to talk about right away. In addition, at that time, in the main headquarters of the Navy, as well as in the Russian Ministry of Defense, they also did not very well imagine why they needed this ship. In the Pacific there is one, in the Northern Fleet, too. There is also on the Black Sea, to send it to the Baltic - there is no practical sense. In addition, the tasks of the fleet have changed dramatically compared with the tasks in Soviet times - Russia refused to chase aircraft carriers. In the means of strategic deterrence, the rate was placed on other types of weapons - primarily on the Strategic Missile Forces.
And in Kiev, they could not decide what to do with the unfinished missile cruiser. At first it was quickly renamed “Ukraine”, as a symbol and pride of the new maritime state. But the symbol and pride could not move away from the factory wall, unless in tow. Two gas turbine engines burned so much fuel that they could heat the city of Nikolaev shipbuilders freezing in winter. And this very fuel was also lacking. In the middle of 90-s of the last century, the author of these lines visited the plant named after 61 of the communard, the enterprise was a pitiful sight — there were no orders, there was nothing to heat the workshops, the workers, who had not been paid for months, scattered. Including the Russian plants - in Severodvinsk, Kaliningrad, Komsomolsk-on-Amur ... And at the mooring wall the toothless missile cruiser "Ukraine" is lonely and rusting.
Negotiations on the sale of his Russia occurred over the past 20 years more than once or twice. The Verkhovna Rada, in order to sell the ship to someone, even decided to remove the name “Ukraine” from the cruiser’s hull - selling the symbol and pride of the state is worthless. Decided to call it simply "the project 1164". Commissions of the General Staff of the Navy and the Ministry of Defense came to Kiev and Nikolaev, negotiated, and even agreed on something. But everything ended as soon as the prepared documents fell into the presidential administration - that of Kravchuk, that of Kuchma, that of Yushchenko. And there, if they did not die, they disappeared in unknown places. Someone did not like something. Maybe the price of the issue. Maybe the fact that the ship was intended for Russia. And she did not want to give anything (sell) in Kiev. They acted according to the masochistic principle: “I will take out my own eye so that my mother-in-law has a son-in-law curve”. And this approach was not only in relation to the missile cruiser unnecessary for Ukraine.
Kiev behaved approximately the same way when it prohibited the pilots of the Northern Fleet to conduct trainings at the NITKA complex near Sevastopol. The complex was rusted around, the Chinese and Indians, whom Ukraine offered to use it, were not going to do this - they built their training complex, and they did not let Russia in Saki, despite the fact that we were ready to pay Ukrainians with hard currency. I had to build such a simulator under Yeisk. Now we have two training grounds for deck pilots. And intractable partners were left with a nose.
They stayed with the nose even when they refused to supply our space troops with information from two MSS stations near Beregovo in the Carpathians and Nikolayevka near Sevastopol. It turned out that 7 million dollars, which Moscow paid for it, were not enough for them - as a result, they did not receive a penny. And sell the station to the Americans, as promised svidomye masochists, also did not work. Who in NATO or the USA needs locators that control the western and southern direction of Ukraine, and not east and north?
Similar examples can be given for a long time. But back to the "Ukraine".
GIFT ALSO TOO VERY EXPENSIVE
Under Yanukovych, negotiations on the 1164 project were no longer conducted. Moscow has lost all interest in him. I remember how during the trip of the two defense ministers Anatoly Serdyukov and Admiral Mikhail Yezhel to Kamchatka and Vladivostok at a press conference in which I also had a chance to attend, some of my colleagues asked the heads of military departments about the fate of the cruiser "Ukraine". Yezhel said that Kiev was glad to sell it to Moscow, and Serdyukov responded either jokingly or seriously, that "we are ready to take it, but only for nothing."
Not for nothing, nor for the money, unfinished and rusting near the wall of the Ukraine plant, Russia was not needed. It is clear why. Putting the cruiser into the dock, cleaning its hull and combat systems from rust, re-equipment for new missile systems and battle support systems cost a fortune. Moreover, no one would dare to carry out all this repair-modernization at the Nikolaev shipyards. Yes, and especially no one, because very many Nikolaev shipbuilders long ago moved to Russian enterprises. With families ... A warship would turn into a hostage who would blackmail Moscow and endlessly pull money from it. Masochists were not found in the Russian military department in order to offer the government such an option of acquiring the 1164 project. We do not need him, of course, now. Moreover, Kiev has legally severed all military-technical cooperation with our country. It does not supply any components or spare parts for previously sold military equipment. And to whom Vice Admiral Haiduk and his bosses in the administration of Mr. Poroshenko will now be able to fuse the unfortunate ship, God only knows. Although it is unlikely.
To alter it, for example, under the BrahMos missile for India, it is still a trouble, it is easier to build a new ship. In addition, there will be a question about the price. I remember the last time, 10 years ago, when another Russian military delegation visited Ukraine, negotiating with its Ukrainian colleagues, it was offered to pay not only for the cruiser, but also to pay all the costs that the 61 plant of the commune had incurred for two decades, the ship stood at the wall, on the electricity, heat and water supply it consumed. In addition, it turned out that the ship’s propeller shafts due to improper care came to be irreparable. And to make and install new ones is still a problem, almost unaffordable. There was no courage in the Russian military department to offer the authorities to satisfy the inordinate greed of their Ukrainian colleagues, to pay huge amounts of money for rusty illiquid assets.
Who now needs a cruiser, for which, according to the commander of the Ukrainian Navy, Vice Admiral Haiduk, about 80% of weapons, navigation equipment and small arms are made only in Russia, an open question. Not a single Western shipbuilding company, even under the political pressure of its own government, will undertake this work - a lot of expenses, and the risk of non-return of funds spent is too great.
To remake a rocket ship under a casino, and then under an aircraft carrier, as the Chinese did with the hull of the aircraft carrier cruiser Varyag under construction in Nikolaev, is also impossible. Is that sell it "on pins". A ton of ship metal on the international market, if with copper wires and other fillings, costs about 200 – 250 dollars per ton. How do you bargain. A full displacement of "Ukraine" - 11 500 tons. Simple arithmetic will prompt the reader to the true price of this ship, and that does not include the cost of towing to the enterprise for the breakdown. Somewhere in India or South Korea, where they specialize in such work.
Although it will still be more decent than engaging in military-economic masochism even longer - keeping the rusting former symbol and pride of the Navy Power chained with towing ends to the quay wall of the shipbuilding plant, to no avail. Of course, new ships and launches for the money gained cannot be built. But at least for heat and light for illiquid "Ukraine" will not have to pay more.