Center for Strategic Assessment and forecasts

Autonomous non-profit organization

Home / Defence and security / Special Operations: Theory and capabilities / Articles
Special forces were born in the land of Tver
Material posted: Publication date: 08-06-2013

"This material does not apply to Udomlya stories, but the editor of the anthology uses the available opportunity to once again honour the great Russian people - Ilya Grigorievich Starinov, whose childhood was spent in the land of Tver, which was created in Tver region during the great Patriotic war of the first regular military part of the special forces."

24 Oct 2000 it was noted the 50th anniversary of the formation of the special forces – special forces of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the General Staff (GRU). At first it was a separate company, later battalions for conducting reconnaissance and sabotage activities behind enemy lines, and with the end of 1962, in all military districts began to form special purpose brigade. These crews were first called “special forces” army spetsnaz GRU is historically “real special forces”. (Today, the heads of various levels attaching this name to different military and police units indiscriminately). GRU has nothing to do with the airborne troops, although is for operational disguise their buttonholes, and even with the intelligence of the airborne forces. Special forces have their problems and their own subordination.

The special forces is reconnaissance and sabotage units which are intended for activities in the operational rear of the enemy to the entire depth of the theater - the theater of military operations (100 – 1000 km), in contrast to tactical intelligence, which operates in the front line (0 – 100km) and strategic (whole depth). The second component of the special forces and sabotage.

The story of the creation of the special reconnaissance and sabotage units goes back centuries. In the creation of the Russian special forces played a significant role tverichi: traveler Vsevolod Roborovskiy (1856 – 1910) and Ilya Grigorievich Starinov (1900 – 2000).

Will not dwell on the personality of Roborovskogo Vsevolod Ivanovich (1856-1910), whose childhood and the last days of life were spent in the village of Andreevskoe vyshnevolotsk County Tver province (today Taraki Udomlya district, the tomb is in the village of Ovsische Vyshnevolotskiy district). Information about it can be found in reference books. In this same article talking about the fact that the Hiking N. M. Przhevalskiy, in which participated Roborovskiy, carried out primarily in the interests of the Ministry of war, and they were funded. And Przhevalsky, and Roborovskiy were officers of the General Staff (!), and the depth of their expeditions was carried out to a depth of the Central Asian theater. Yes, the expedition was stated as a scientific (operational security) and actually performed scientific tasks. But, above all, the objectives of the expeditions was the collection of intelligence: mapping the terrain, search of passages in the mountains and deserts, familiarity with the character of the local population, climate, water supply areas. A purely scientific expedition sponsored by the Academy of Sciences, was funded by an order of magnitude worse. Areas, involving expeditions of Przewalski and Roborovskogo, was at that time virtually uncontrolled, and the Russian Empire weighed the possibility to subordinate to their influence. The organisation, aims and objectives, the depth of action of these expeditions, in modern military language, can be described as “action squad operational intelligence GSH to a depth of theater”.

Ilya Grigorievich Starinov while still alive came to be called - “the legend of the Russian special forces.” Of course, Starinov has played a crucial role in creating preconditions for the emergence of a special commando parts, developed the basics of their tactics, created a special types of weapons and equipment for their effective operation.

I first became acquainted with his name, studying at the faculty of GRU of the General staff of the Ryazan airborne command school in 1981-1985 (Then special forces and faculty in Ryazan was so is classified that their existence did not know even many warlords). Mine explosives was studied on the faculty thoroughly, it was one of the core subjects. Basic tutorials and instructions on mine blasting work was developed with the direct participation Starinov.

His military biography of Ilya Grigoryevich outlined in the books “Mines waiting in the wings” (1964) and “walk invisible” (1988). In the mid-1990s were published, including abroad, of his book “notes of a saboteur”, “bombs”, “Soldiers of the century”, “Under cover of night”. After the removal from power of N.With. Khrushchev from the first book censorship was withdrawn 8 printed pages, but in the remaining volume of old boy openly and harshly expressed his opinion of the error of the military leadership of the USSR before and during the great Patriotic war. That is why his second book was published only 24 years later! On the eve of its centennial in 2000 in periodicals held a number of publications about his life.

Ilya Grigorievich Starinov was born 2 August n. s. (Elijah the prophet, the Thunderer), 1900 in the village of Voynovo Orel province (near the town of Bolkhov), but spent his childhood on the land of Tver. He was the first child in the family of a trackman on the railway stretch Zavidovo – red'kino. The family of eight lived in a train box and close to the river Shosha. This place is now flooded by the waters of the reservoir Ivankovskoye. Birthday and name to determine the fate of the boy: “the Clock in my childhood I was sitting on a mound, looking fascinated at the passing booths of the train. It seemed no force able to keep their mad run. However, we, the children, knew that father trains obey...

One day, Blizzard the night I was awakened by the roar of explosions. It turned out, father discovered a broken rail and not hoping that the driver will notice a red light, put on the rails firecrackers. They arrested the composition.

This case so impressed my boyish imagination, that the father for a long time seemed to me a man of fabulous power.”

He studied Ilya Grigoryevich in a four-year school in Zavidovo, where I went every day on the train, getting up at 5 o'clock in the morning. Once year, in 1908, his student of the parish school, was sent on a long trip on school business with the priest. There was a Great post. In the car the priest unwrapped the bundle and began to eat burgers. The boy was outraged, and upon returning from a trip publicly condemned the actions of the priest. “Hothead” was expelled from school. With 12 years Ilya Grigoryevich worked as a watchman at the peat machine.

Before the revolution he went to Tver, and got a job at one of the factories. In October 1917, together with his factory cronies, he joined the battle group, made by the Tver city Council of workers 'and soldiers' deputies. The group was tasked to hold up troop trains, EN route to Petrograd. Weapons group had not, but were able to detain several squads of soldiers, pulling rail journey logs and disabling semaphores. In 1918 his mother died Ilya G. - “when I was in Tver”.

During the civil war he joined the Red Army and participated in battles against Denikin and Wrangel. In 1919 he was captured, escaped, was wounded. Under the influence of the stories of companion from the hospital after recovery he volunteered to serve in a sapper company. Taganrog, Azov, Temryuk, Kerch, Crimea, Kuban, Makhachkala, Baku, Georgia, Batum is a long time soldier in the war. Service in the Royal engineers determined his whole life.

In the autumn of 1922 old boy graduated a year a two-year course for Voronezh school of military railway technicians and was sent to the railway regiment in Kiev. Regiment rebuild destroyed during the war the railway network. Along the railway, near the settlements there were a large number of unexploded ordnance. Every opportunity old boy exploring the structure of various types of fuses, doing the first experiments on melting explosive (he) bombs and shells. “At that time, - says Ilya Grigorievich, I first thought about creating a portable mines for blowing up enemy trains... simple, reliable, convenient, trouble-free”. In this thesis Starinov has formulated the task, which at the time had not yet been solved anywhere in the world. Protivopokazanie mines - “infernal machines” used by the engineer troops of all countries, was cumbersome and not reliable.

The hobby of the young military expert the mine case says the boss. It will be in the border zone to plan the destruction of the railway infrastructure in case of war.

In 1929, passed away father.

In the spring of 1930 old boy was transferred to the GRU. As an instructor teaching the basics of tactics and sabotage groups of the Chinese, the poles, the workers Communist parties of Western European countries, including A. Marty, P. Togliatti.

In the early 1930-ies in the Western border districts have launched a training for guerrilla movements in a possible future war, the construction of fortifications, guerrilla bases, were laying caches of weapons and equipment (including in neighbouring States). Starinov organized a laboratory, where he developed samples of a special commando min, then developed the “coal mine”, a very effectively used during the great Patriotic war. Mine were disguised as lumps of coal and tossed into the coal bunkers of the steam engines. Getting from there to the firebox it exploded and displayed the locomotive down.

1932 in exercises in the Leningrad military district commanded by Starinov sabotage (guerrilla) group, which was parachuted by night by parachute behind enemy lines to commit sabotage against enemy communications. The first time a group of paratroopers of 12 people with weapons were desantirovanie near Voronezh on 2 August 1930 – birthday of the airborne forces). During the exercise, with the active opposition of the “enemy”, the group Starinov successfully mined ten mine-10-kilometer section of the railway and, perhaps for the first time, it was held successfully hidden the large-scale mining of the headquarters of the imaginary enemy, which was located in the village.

In 1933, Starinov was transferred to serve in Moscow in the people's Commissariat of Defense and he went to study at the Military transport Academy. In 1929 Starinov became acquainted with D. M. by Karbysheva. In 1934, Karbyshev was appointed head of the Department of Academy. Frunze. After talking with Starikovym of mines for various purposes and the delayed-action mines, mass production of which offered old boy, Karbyshev encouraged him to write more on this topic thesis.

After graduating from the Academy old boy served as the Deputy military commandant of the railway station in Leningrad. He has to accompany to Moscow to Blucher, Tukhachevsky, Voroshilov and Shaposhnikov. One old boy had the courage to talk to M. N. Tukhachevsky on preparations for guerrilla war and mine demonstrated a simple contactor made from a matchbox. (The relevance of this contactor is not lost so far!) Tukhachevsky, the conversation was not supported, was supposed to fight on foreign territory of large military units...

In 1936 Starinov volunteer in the direction of the leadership of the GRU went to Spain as an Advisor and instructor of a reconnaissance Domingo Angry. Had to practice methods of conducting subversive war. The idea Starinov was simple, as all ingenious. Principal stress during the war, of course, occurs at the contact line of the warring parties. But the duration of this voltage depends, besides the moral factor, from timely provision of fighting troops with all necessary. To act in the front line of subversive groups is difficult: the high density of combat-ready units, round-the-clock outposts. Another thing is stretched communications of the enemy. To organize their effective protection is not possible in principle. Besides the service in the rear carries less combat-ready troops. Well-organized and coordinated from the centre for subversive activities can do much to paralyze the transport network of the opponent and to distract her guard combat-ready units from the front.

In December 1936 Starinov (in Spain it was nicknamed “wolf”, but in the book he wrote “Rudolph”) along with prepared the raiding party first went on a combat mission. During the operation, between the cities of Teruel and Calatayud were destroyed by road and a railway bridge was taken out by a communication line.

After each output Starinov carefully analyzes the operation of the equipment, reasons for success and failure. Is constantly improving. purchased personal salary a few pocket watches Starinov manufactures bombs. Under the Fire into the ranks of the detachment of bombers joined soldiers from the brigade. Starinov quickly increased troop numbers and, after appropriate training, to the rear of the enemy at the same time was out by several groups. To escape from persecution enemy group used a grenade with a delayed action. (And today reconnaissance, leaving the place of ambush, sabotage, undermine, and if necessary, escape routes. Who was in a combat zone knows about it). Behind enemy lines Starinov was to create a framework on which was stored a stock of EXPLOSIVES and mines. the Group went into the rear light that kept physical force fighters and allows you to perform several combat missions for a single output.

Under Cord the subversive group, which included old boy, managed to derail a major tier with the headquarters of the Italian air division. This event caused a great resonance. To interview the miners Mikhail Koltsov, and Ilya Ehrenburg. 23 Mar in “Pravda” published an article of Erinburg about the event. Old boy, for obvious reasons, remained in the shadows. About his participation in the Spanish event was known only to the initiated. People detachment Starinov also met Ernst Hemingway, who was in the Spain war correspondent. With the soldiers of the detachment he took part in several raids into the enemy's rear. The collected material he wrote later in his famous novel “For whom the bell tolls” (1940), where truthfully, albeit with a slight touch of pathos, described the action and sabotage groups behind enemy lines. In this novel, Hemingway also made very many accurate psychological observations that characterize the moral climate of the war.

The shortage of staff min. old boy paid much attention to the production of min of improvised mines “surprises”. Spain old boy has invented and manufactured small magnetic mines to blow up tanks with fuel. Their appearance since then almost has not changed.

During the battle for one of the strongholds that were in the abandoned monastery, Starinov and his group used a mine-surprise, which can be called “Trojan horse”. The boxes with the EXPLOSIVES were loaded mule, and defending themselves let him inside the monastery. After the explosion the Republican side are easy to capture it.

Prepared by Starikovym instructors mine blasting case and the commanders of subversive groups after a couple of months to have themselves acted as the organizers of the sabotage activities that allow you to quickly increase the number of groups sent behind enemy lines. As a result, by 1937, was formed on the 14th partisan corps, which consisted of 5 thousand people. (After the victory of Franco case could at full strength to enter the territory of France during the Second world war took part in the fight against the Nazis in the French Resistance). On separate sites of the railway saboteurs managed to cover the trains fully for a few days. The group also relied heavily on ambush actions on the roads: fired on the convoy of the enemy, captured single cars, used them to travel behind enemy lines and loading of explosives to blow up bridges.

In total, old boy held in Spain eleven months. During this time he created an effective system of training of saboteurs and special min Prepared group produced explosions of almost a hundred trains (not undermining each ends with a crash), destroyed hundreds of cars, approx. 2,000 soldiers and officers, many bridges and communication lines. The Spanish war was thus the first sabotage was conducted on this scale. In the course of this war made manifest to the full the military genius Starinov. He developed the basis for the preparation and control of subversive forces in combat, have developed tactics and strategy of their application, determined the ways of development of special mines and technology. The results of his stay in Spain old boy summed up: “the Successful application of engineering min. on communications of the frankists was made possible only because of the development of this terrible weapon we have at home vigorously took in the early thirties. Developed by the Soviet partisans tactics and technique of mining was above tactics and equipment of the enemy on clearance. The rebels could not ensure the security of its communications”. Let me remind you that the Soviet, Russian military experts opposed in Spain including the German specialists. Thus, in 1937 the Red Army were armed with the latest sabotage techniques and tactics that had not been there in other armies. But invaluable experience Starinov military leadership of the country was completely ignored, and in 1941 he would have to start all over again!

In the USSR old boy returned to the boat via Leningrad. While he fought in Spain, were persecuted many military personnel senior and middle managers. Many colleagues and friends Starinov was also arrested. All preparations for guerrilla warfare in the 1930-ies was called a “conspiracy to overthrow the Soviet Government. Honestly the feeling of accomplishment of military duty from the first hours gave way to despair.

About his participation in the Spanish event Starinov reported personally to the people's Commissar of defense Voroshilov. Voroshilov appreciated the merits of Starinov and encouraged his superiors to promote him in rank and in office. Starinov was awarded the order of Lenin and the red banner.

But instead of promotions Starinov is summoned to the NKVD and interrogated about the purpose of the formation of a secret guerrilla bases, the training of guerrilla cadres in the 1930-ies. From conversations with wives of the arrested old boy already knew that they were accused of “not believing in the power of the socialist state” (the enemy in case of war can advance deep into Soviet territory, as much as 100 kilometers (!) – base was laid in the 30 – 100 km from the Western border), “in preparation for hostile activity in the rear of the Soviet army.” Seeking protection from persecution, old boy appealed to Voroshilov and he was able to protect him. Thus, Starinov was one of the very few who managed to avoid arrest. And the repressed in this case was not less than 10 thousand people were arrested the entire leadership of the GRU, the intelligence leaders of the Western military districts, almost all the leaders of guerrilla groups, ordinary guerrillas, dismantled the fortifications and guerrilla bases.

After the successful establishment of diversionary units in Spain Starinov had expected that his experience will be in demand and he will be able to continue working in the same direction. But he was appointed head of the Central scientific testing polygon train of the red army. From more prestigious positions assignment old boy refused. It was important not formal position, and the opportunity to do their work.

17 Feb 1938 Sterinova was awarded the rank of Colonel.

At the landfill site was a small camp of prisoners, where behind barbed wire in “sharashka” worked on the creation of the famous dive bomber PE-2 aircraft designer V. M. Petlyakov. But the secrecy was that about that old boy learned only in 1943, having met accidentally with the designer.

In the book Starinov notes that the commanding staff of the red army was strongly updated. Continuity was broken. In place of the experienced people came to the newcomers who had neither the necessary experience nor the knowledge.

Arriving on the ground, old boy then continued to develop subversive tactics and technology. Circumstances were against him, but he always tried to be above circumstances. To some extent, the service at the site even gave the advantage. You can blow up and renew railway tracks, bridges, etc Starinov creates a special laboratory, where she continued to improve protivopokazanie bomb and instant action, defended his thesis “Mining Railways”. Repression, according to Starinov, greatly slowed the process of adopting new types of weapons and mine including. Realizing this, old boy a lot of time writing manuals for the military, where it describes the method of making mines from scrap materials.

November 30, 1939 began the Soviet-Finnish war. Starinov joined the group, which was tasked to organize the clearance of the occupied territories. During the retreat the Finns actively mined area and used mines surprises. During one of the clearance in February, 1940, the old boy was twice wounded in the right arm by a sniper, and then two months spent in the hospital and was disabled. At discharge from the hospital he was given a certificate of no validity to military service with the deregistration. The rest of my life, the mobility of the right hand were limited. The Finnish war old boy has received a second order of the red banner.

The war with the Finns a few sober political and military leadership of the country. Become more to pay attention to the combat readiness, technical equipment and engineering support of troops. After recovery, old boy headed the Department of the fencing and mining of the Main military engineering Directorate of the red army. Had to catch the red Army in the art of mining and mine.

War is very close to the borders of the Soviet Union. Acquainted with the state of obstacles in the border zone, old boy, according to him, was stunned. Were eliminated all backlogs 1926 – 1933. Was devastated warehouses with stocks of EXPLOSIVES near the important objects of the disbanded special engineering parts. Many military leaders believed that in the case of external aggression, the Soviet Union would lead only to an offensive war in enemy territory, mines were regarded as a purely defensive weapon. It Starinova belongs to the idea that mines are a versatile weapon for offensive action as necessary as and for the defense. In the hands of specially trained sabotage groups of mines became a weapon of attack.

Still on the combat capability of troops continued to influence the “political question”. Openly show the “defensive” mood meant to sign the “alarmism”. You can once again marvel at the courage Starinov, which in these conditions continued to insist on his “politically dangerous” statements. His argument about the necessity of preparing to sabotage the war old boy, in the end, appealed to the Central Committee of the CPSU(b). The letter had the desired effect. The government drew attention to the provision of special mines, but, as evidenced by Starinov on January 1, 1941, time bombs and booby surprises the army did not exist, although there was a great development. In fact, supporters of the widespread use of different mines was in the army in the position of enthusiasts and their efforts, according to old boy, “was a drop in the bucket”.

On the morning of 20 June 1941, old boy arrived in Minsk to participate in the exercises and was presented to the district commander D. G. Pavlov. The atmosphere in the headquarters was nervous. Constantly ringing phone, from the frontier strip has reported on the violation of the border, about German spies. German daily aircraft intruded into Soviet airspace. To knock them out is strictly forbidden. On Saturday 21 June old boy went to the training ground near Brest. Night caught him in Kobrin.

June 22 old boy woke up from the bombing began, thinking at first that blasting operations are in progress. Link by link the city swooped down bombers. Moscow radio broadcast a lesson of morning exercises. Starinov was in the thick of events, has witnessed the complete breakdown of command and control. As he expected, the Germans were able to easily master the basic road and rail bridges. He was urgently summoned to Moscow and was appointed commander of operational-engineering group, whose mission was to destroy the transport infrastructure before the advancing enemy.

Two sapper battalions, which were placed at the disposal of Starinov, three men had one rifle, mines and EXPLOSIVES allocated was clearly not enough, almost no engineering equipment. 27 Jun operative group Starinov went to the Western front along the Minsk highway. His first battle in the great Patriotic war old boy took Orsha. Local residents noticed the landing of a group of German parachutists and reported them to a passing group Starinov. During the short battle, the paratroopers were destroyed.

At the headquarters of the Western front old boy I met again with the now front commander D. G. Pavlov, and on 1 July was present at his arrest.

Group Starinov were extremely successful. She managed to destroy dozens of bridges. Because the Germans were literally on the heels of the retreating Soviet troops, required bombs (MZD), which become armed after the time required for the passage of his columns. Without waiting for a regular DCI, Starinov started to make them in the field. Set in a pile of rubble or rocks covered with MZD turned into kamnenosov – directional mines (MES). Mine was mounted on the-handling device and when you try to mine them. After the war, on the principle that a directed explosion will create regular mines: mon-50, mon-100, etc., which are very widely used today in all military conflicts.

The enemy's communications stretched. The Germans were advancing mainly along roads. In the rear the enemy was a huge forest area. In early July, old boy sent behind enemy lines the first commando group, which has successfully mined the road and has carried out blasting several cars.

July 13, Starinov the order of people's Commissar of defense was appointed head of the front the first partisan schools of the Western front. Arriving in Roslavl, where he was school old boy made sure that none of the people who put on training guerrillas, had no idea about tactics of actions of guerrilla groups. I had to start all over again! The experience of the 1930-ies was lost, footage destroyed!

Began planning training guerrilla cadres. Sixty hours of training – and the guerrillas went behind enemy lines. Time is clearly not sufficient, but there was no choice. School's been moving East. The war was approaching Moscow. School-trained instructors and sabotage cases were transferred to other schools.

In late July, the old boy went to Kiev, where he once served, and where once was a powerful center for training guerrilla cadres. None of the former instructor was not found! Training guerrillas led by party officials who did not understand. Five days old boy conducts classes in Kiev, and later conducts short lessons in Chernigov, organizes school in eagle. In September, the eagle for the preparation of the group's profit from Tula and Kursk. Starinov, therefore, organizes training of personnel of sabotage across the fronts of the areas of the three Soviet republics! In fact, he was the only specialist in the red Army, who knew and sabotage the case. Starinov example again clearly shows the greatness of the feat of the Russian people in the great Patriotic war, who are between the millstones of Stalin's repressions and the military machine of Germany found the strength and won. No thanks to the Communist party and Stalin, but in spite of them!

In the second half of September, the old boy got a task to carry out mining and the destruction of vital industrial and transport infrastructure of Kharkiv. Order to carry out works old boy received the Supreme command personally from the chief of the General Staff B. M. Shaposhnikov. In Kharkiv, he meets with N. With. Khrushchev, who as a Member of the Military Council of the front agrees a plan for the installation of minefields. Further, as recognized by Starinov, Khrushchev was three times saved him from arrest.

In Kharkiv detachment Starinov was established hundreds of min – of such scale mining during the war was used for the first time. In one of the party houses Starinov set radiomenu high power. At a depth of more than two meters in the basement was installed a 350-pound charge of explosive on-handling device with radio controlled fuses (at the time radiomen were in service only in the red Army). Closer to the surface were installed mine about low power – “baubles”. It was assumed that if you find it, German engineers deem the object is cleared, will lose vigilance and further search will stop. Radiomen were established in other buildings of the city. On the night of 14 November, with the powerful radio stations of Voronezh was given the signal to undermine radiomen. In the mined mansion was blown up the commandant of Kharkov, Lieutenant General Georg von Braun and staff officers of the 68th infantry division. This act of sabotage in the annals of subversive art and special books.

Together with Starikovym in mining in Kharkov was attended by the Spaniards, which the old boy taught sabotage the case in Spain. After the victory in Spain of Franco, they went to the Soviet Union and worked at the enterprises of Kharkov. Starinov made to a group of Spaniards took to the engineering part. In the future he would carry them with him on all fronts.

In late November 1941 old boy led the installation of minefields near Tula, Solnechnogorsk, Serpukhov, Dmitrov highway, and on 28 November received the appointment of assistant chief of staff engineering troops of the red Army.

In mid-November, old boy through the Military Council of the southwestern front wrote a letter to Stalin about the need for mass production of special anti-vehicle mines, the organization of sabotage activities behind enemy lines. At the end of November he was summoned to the Bet. Instead of Stalin it took the representative Rate of L. Z. Mehlis, to prove which nothing is possible. Moreover, Mehlis had promised to shoot Starinov, if he did not cease to disturb Stalin “nonsense”. Instead of the planned sabotage activities in the rear of the Stavka decided to give the partisans the task to burn forests and villages (in winter!), i.e., to deprive guerrillas of shelter and shelter who fell in the occupation of the Russian people.

In early November, the old boy gets in Zavidovo, where the visiting family of his childhood friend Yegor Derevyankina.

Another letter to Stalin to take effect. The planning Commission held a special meeting to which were invited old boy, and by the spring of the new mines started in droves to enter the army and in partisan detachments.

16 Dec Starinov together with the Spaniards went to Rostov-on-don for the device minefields. Here he uses the original idea of mass laying of mines in an open way. Mines have been laid directly on the ground without any disguise, mixed with a mass of about min Is mining requires less time, effort and money. These mines are clearly visible to the enemy, but the main goal is achieved – the enemy has to bypass the obstacle. And again, barely looking around, old boy starts planning the infiltration of subversive groups in the rear of the enemy on the ice of the Gulf of Taganrog. He again created a laboratory, where under his leadership are beginning to produce and improve designs Industrial min. trade min. of the experimental samples was organized on the Rosselmash. At the same time opens the partisan school, where they sabotage the footage. And wherever not started Starinov, great results. In January - February 1942, in the rear of the enemy subversive groups out 110 times. They have found 744 mines. From small arms and mines have been destroyed over 100 enemy soldiers put out of action for 56 vehicles and 2 tanks blown up 2 bridge.

One day in late February a subversive group of Marines captured and taken to the battalion headquarters a large number of documents. Among them was a thick book, German military engineer, dotted with charts and formulas. It gave Starinova. He German language does not know to read and gave it to one of the officers: “Some nonsense about nuclear energy!” - officer replied. On arrival in Moscow, old boy gave this book to the State Defense Committee for science. So for the first time the Soviet political leadership learned of the work of the Germans to develop nuclear weapons. This book prompted academician A. F. Ioffe to turn to Stalin with a proposal to urgently establish a research center on the issue of nuclear weapons.

In the spring of 1942 old boy first puts the question to a higher authority about the creation of special brigades (!) for actions against enemy communications, meets with the commander of the airborne troops Glazunov. After a meeting in airborne units were sent an experienced trainer to teach Marines the basics of diversionary tactics and mine blasting work. But Starinov believed that it was necessary to create special forces for action in the rear of the troops.

In the spring of 1942, the old boy was back in the land of Tver. He was sent to the headquarters of the engineering troops of the Kalinin front for the organization of works on the minefields. But apart from the main work he again tries to create a special commando parts for action behind enemy lines. With this idea he appeals to the commander of the front, Lieutenant-General I. S. Konev. Konev with the course appreciated the idea Starinov and immediately gave the order to form a special commando team on the basis of the airborne troops! “Business, " writes old boy, from the very beginning has gained rapid acceleration!” Konev contacted the chief of the General staff A. M. Vasilevsky and asked to accept Starinov. Vasilevsky gave approval for the establishment of special commando teams and offered Sterinova to lead “separate engineering brigade of special purpose” on the Kalinin front, that old boy of course agreed. On the instructions of Vasilevsky he has also developed a draft order about creation of special units on all fronts and the violation of traffic on the communications of the enemy on the Western and Kalinin fronts.

The brigade included three battalions of the 5th engineer brigade and the 110-th Separate motorized regiment. Commissioner brigade was assigned to A. I. Bolotin. From Nakhabinskaya engineering College old boy seized from students of the commanders of subversive groups. In addition, he obtained a secondment to the brigade commanders with whom he served in Kharkiv and Rostov, and a group of Spaniards. The first commanding officers of the brigade were: to Mr. Kazantsev, tbsp-you Chepak, Romaniuk, Ilyushenkov. Their first drop to the rear of the enemy occurred on the section of the 3rd shock army. One group had to connect with guerrilla groups, others act independently. Special school for the training of miners for the guerrilla groups were also created in North.-Zap. group of the Communist party(Bolsheviks) of Belarus at the headquarters of the Kalinin front (the group was in D. Sheino).

At the request Starinov Konev restored in the same ranks of all Spaniards, some were appointed to posts of commanders of subversive groups, others sent as instructors mine blasting case of the guerrilla groups. The first in the enemy's rear had been withdrawn group P. A. Romaniuk, l-TA, K. S., Sokolov, G. A. Kriulina, Spanish Canela, Francisco Gaspar, Chico Mariano. Group Chepak came to carrying out acts of sabotage on the railroad Smolensk – Vyaz'ma.

Special min is not enough, and the old boy started production in Kalinin. Kalinin regional party Committee and regional Committee of Komsomol sent to the brigade 250 boys and girls. The focus of the groups was aimed at disrupting the supply of material resources and personnel of the enemy to Rzhevsky host defenses. For the first time raised the question of a special food high in calories sets to throw groups. Commando school was established at the Valdai in the area of the North-Western front. Unfortunately, not enough portable radios and are out of stock of mines and EXPLOSIVES, the group were forced to go through the front, back, losing precious time and energy. In the band of the Kalinin front in case of a possible summer retreat of the Soviet troops was laid 46 of arms depots and mines. In June in the enemy's rear left 73 group of minelayers. Losses among the personnel.

Starinov was still convinced that for actions behind enemy lines, you need to create special troops. And he again wrote a letter to Stalin. The idea of creating troops and the essence of the letter strongly supported Konev. In Moscow at this email Starinov met with Voroshilov, M. I. Kalinin, Secretary of the Central Committee G. M. Malenkov, chief of the General staff A. M. Vasilevsky. For the replenishment of the brigade by the Spaniards Starinov requested the Secretary-General of the Executive Committee of the Comintern G. M. Dimitrov. Dimitrov was keenly interested in the tactics of subversive groups, asking questions about the possibility of using their experience in the struggle of the peoples in the occupied territories of Europe. After this meeting, the brigade was sent to another hundred Spaniards.

The creation of special forces was in the offing. On 23 July, the Soviet information Bureau announced that the unit, whose commander is Colonel Starinov, derailed 10 levels of the enemy. Old boy is in correspondence with the command of the neighboring fronts. Preparation of subversive groups were conducted in Karelia, Western and Southern fronts. There were signed documents on the establishment of engineering parts for special purposes.

But Starinov suddenly summoned to Moscow and was sent to work in the Central headquarters of the partisan troops. August 17, 1942 order of the people's Commissar of Defense was created as a Separate guards battalion of miners and guards Separate brigade of sappers and miners at the Rate for mining and destruction of communications behind enemy lines”. On the Kalinin front had formed a 10-th Separate guards battalion of miners. From the composition of the 5th brigade of people got to it a little, but in the rear continued to operate effectively 160th and 166th battalions of the brigade. Particularly active battalions were manifest in the enemy rear from April to August 1943. After parachute training in summer 1943 in the rear of the enemy began to throw the whole company of sappers and miners. During the fighting seven soldiers from the brigade were awarded the title hero of the Soviet Union: art. l-Tu N.In. Kolosov, V. s-Tu, V. P., Goryacheva, s-Tu, D. M. Yablochkina, ml. s-Tu, V. B. Efimov, I. K. ordinary Bazaleva, F. I. Bezrukov, M. V. Soft. Hundreds of miners were awarded military orders and medals. The commander of sabotage group of the l-t Andrianov brought in August 1943 from occupied territory six hundred civilians. In September of the same year, this group, consisting of 25 people was taken prisoner and disarmed 88 of enemy saboteurs. In June 1944, the group, together with a detachment of partisans were surrounded. The battle lasted all day. During the break Andrianov died. After the war the name “Peter Andrianov was named Volga boat.

Thus, the old boy was on the land of Tver from spring to mid-August 1942. During this period, and hosted one of the most important stages of creation of the special forces.

In the Central Headquarters of the partisan movement Starinov headed the school for the training of miners and technical Department production of special min Began the usual job training and getting them to guerrilla groups.

In January 1943 old boy went to the Caucasus for the planning of operations behind enemy lines. With him he takes away a significant group of Spaniards. Behind enemy lines in the area between Rostov, Sal, Tikhoretsk and Krasnodar every few days was desantirovanie parachute 16 subversive groups. Later were developed the withdrawal groups in the enemy's rear on the torpedo boats in the areas of Novorossiysk and the Crimean Peninsula.

Improved practice of the use of subversive groups and their tactics, an idea of the size groups, based on the objectives. Usually group size is 5-7 people group - 20-30 people. Night movement and sabotage, the organisation of the day's rest and observation. Great difficulty was the evacuation groups. To extend their actions in the enemy rear, in the air they were thrown food and ammunition. Blood accumulated negative experience.

7 March 1943 the Central staff of the partisan movement was disbanded. Disbanded the school, headed by old boy. He was transferred to the Ukrainian headquarters of the partisan movement. Deputy chief of staff, he determines the circle of its duties – creates the Department for the training of saboteurs and planning sabotage operations. As before, and now Starinova be very difficult to defend their opinion on the principles of implementation of the guerrilla and diversionary forces. The command continued to plan the operation, where the guerrillas had to go in head-on collision with the enemy. In such battles the forces of the partisans was quickly exhausted, as they had no heavy weapons, stocks of ammunition was limited, and accumulate the wounded reduced the mobility of the troops. Old boy saw the chief in the tactics of the partisans carrying out sabotage on communications. This required far less ammunition and EXPLOSIVES, and the effect was much higher.

In the spring of 1943 the leadership of the partisan forces, the idea of “the rail war”. It was assumed wherever possible to blow up the rails, just to blow up the rails. The idea was supported by Stalin. Starinov considered the idea of another stupidity, which would divert a huge force, means, but the desired effect will not give, and, secondly, impede the restoration of the railway after the departure of the Germans from the occupied territories. As before, old boy insisted on the wrecked trains with manpower and equipment.

Approaching the battle of Kursk and Voronezh old boy serving on the front. The tasks are the same – traffic disruption of enemy rail and highways. As noted old boy, in preparation for the battle of Kursk from a superior command, was finally understanding that mines are not only defensive but also offensive weapons. Of course, one of the “culprit” awareness of this reality was old boy, whose successful experience on all fronts spoke for itself. The amazing thing is that Sterinova managed to convince one level of leadership for others to abandon the “rail war” and lead a “war on rails”. The result was adopted it was his plan to launch a massive attack on enemy communications.

To coordinate guerrilla groups Starinov crashes behind enemy lines. During the great Patriotic war, it was his first flight over the front line. In guerrilla groups Kovpaka Fedorova Saburova, Vershigory etc. he provides training for miners. The first planned large-scale application of MZD on the Railways.

July 5, 1943 battle of Kursk. Starinov believed that if partisan detachments were promptly provided with the necessary number of mines, explosives and experts – transportation by rail could paralyze completely. Moreover, he believed that in 1942 could completely paralyze the supply of the enemy by rail on all fronts.

Subsequent events have shown that the calculations Starinov was correct. Dozens of subversive groups established on all Railways leading to the front line to the South, hundreds of minutes And again, a beautiful and brilliant idea. Simultaneously on the same site installed on a dozen MZD-handling device (mines explode when you try to mine) with different delay time. The combat platoon was the first mine and exploded the first echelon of the enemy. The Germans check the road, strengthen the protection. Again let trains. Some of them manages to pass that dulls the vigilance of the guards. At this time, is armed the second mine, and another train is going downhill. The Germans are combing the forest in search of guerrillas, but they do not know that mines are already in the roadway. So consistently mines the forward end of the deceleration become armed and explode from the vibration passing from the top of the composition. In the end, not finding the answer and not addressing the root cause, the enemy has been forced to completely stop traffic on the road section. But if guerrilla groups acting in concert, they are able to paralyze the movement over a vast area. To understand this simple idea where all the years of war insisted old boy, it took two hard years of war and millions dead.

So only the squad Fedorova from 7 July to 10 August using MZD derailed 123 echelon of the enemy (!), whereas for the previous 16 months, only 65. To destroy the same number of trains, say from the air, it would take hundreds of sorties, hundreds of tons of aircraft explosives, the inevitable loss of dozens of planes. The enemy quickly abandoned to the protection of communications new and new parts, but the mines continued to explode. The actions of the saboteurs supply the troops on many railroads was fully (fully!) paralyzed. All in all, in the second half of 1943 the partisans had derailed 3.143 echelon! Performance diversion of the partisans was 100 times more effective than aviation! But even after such impressive results Starinov, the situation has not improved and he still had to convince the higher command of the need for large-scale sabotage actions. And it seems incredible!

Later old boy was involved in increasing the combat capability of the guerrilla groups in Poland, Yugoslavia (September – November 1944 was chief of the military mission of the USSR during Joseph Tito), Romania. From late 1944 until the end of the war were engaged in mine clearing of objects on the territory of Germany.

During the war, Starinov was almost on all fronts, has created dozens of schools for the training of saboteurs, laboratories for the production of mines has prepared personally over 2000 bombers. His disciples and prepared them miners derailed approx. 12,000 echelons of the enemy. He was included in the list of personal enemies of Hitler.

After the war, Starinov was involved in the restoration of the Railways. In 1956 he retired. From 1956 to 1962 he was a senior research associate of the Department of the IML under the CPSU Central Committee. From 1966 to 1973, he has been teaching in the schools of the KGB. Since 1984 – Professor of special disciplines. He has more than 150 scientific books and monographs.

Starinov was awarded two orders of Lenin, five orders of the red banner, and many other awards. With the medals “For victory over Germany” Starinov erased a file a bas-relief of Stalin, because until the last day of his life, he considered that Stalin and his entourage were to blame for the fact that the Soviet Union entered the war unprepared, destroyed in the purges of personnel potential of the army.

Thus, it is possible to argue that the old boy made a decisive contribution to the creation in 1950 of the special forces – spetsnaz GRU. He developed in detail the tactics and strategy of its application, created dozens of prototypes of special equipment, including PMS – train Starinov Mina and al – Mina car Starinov. It Starinov was able to prove that “mine is not defensive, but purely offensive weapon” is “inherent in the right place Mina hits the mark” in contrast to the blind of the projectile.

Even in the civil war, he seriously undermined his health and got rheumatism in a severe form. The doctors released him, with proper adherence, 50 years of life. Strict self-discipline, a healthy lifestyle (never drunk or smoked and was constantly engaged in physical activity) allowed him not only to live to a hundred years, contrary to the predictions of doctors, but also a way-heavy war. It was presented five times to the rank of General, three times the title of Hero of the Soviet Union. But neither he has got all too often a professional of the highest level did not agree with my superiors, too often openly defended their opinions.

Died Ilya Grigorievich Starinov in October of 2000, surpassing a hundred years old.

And here, I allow myself to do a little personal retreat. At the military school of the subversive case we taught teachers. In principle, taught well, can't complain. But during the study we did not see any of the veteran intelligence during the great Patriotic war and post-war conflicts (except teachers). Them in school, unfortunately, was not invited. But the same thing happened with participants in the Afghan war! For several years in Afghanistan there was a war, and the cadets learned about her, the tactics of our troops and spetsnaz groups, not from people there, the warring, and from random sources. (1986-1987 author of these lines served in the special forces brigade in Pskov the commander of the group had to strongly defend their right to routine training. Was the sixth year of the war in Afghanistan...) lack of personnel capable to correctly describe features of the actions of the troops in the mountainous desert was not. Graduates of the school regularly came to leave, went to College and experiences shared, but all this happened in an informal setting. No conferences or specially organized meetings... At the end of 1980-ies from the special forces started a mass Exodus of officers with unique combat experience. Many for the war was two – three – four order. (The commander of the group and mouth the forces of the order, unlike the staff officers and chiefs of warehouses, just not received). The main motive of care for many was the attitude of senior commanders and the system as a whole to their human and professional experience received in the course of the war. No one even tried to gather this experience, to summarize it, to give veterans appropriate scale of operations. The experience of the actions of the spetsnaz GRU in Afghanistan, for example, has been consolidated only in the late 1990s, Sergei Kozlov, who has published a book “Spetsnaz GRU” (2000). Sergey, effective officer of the Kandahar special forces battalion, was able to perform the work of the whole Institute! But he is now only the head of the warehouse in Moscow. His experience as the experience of many people who were military officials are not in demand.

In Chechnya the Russian army to reap the bitter experience of the neglect of military professionals. The new generation of commanders of groups of special forces combat experience in Chechnya had to earn the new blood. But again, as can be inferred from personal communication with veterans of the Chechen wars and from publications in the press, the state machine rejects the experience of true fighters! Quit – quit! A lot of cannon fodder. Desk clerks in Moscow don't care what the price is met (or not) combat mission! Crappy rooted in everyday life and army tradition – “no one is irreplaceable!” Irreplaceable people are! Starinova, Kozlov – units, and officials thousands! The layer of the high professionals in any field is very thin. He is accumulating for decades and centuries, and destroyed, in one stroke of the pen indifferent official. Unfortunately, since Starinov nothing in our army has not changed. Therefore, when the generals say about the collapse of the army in recent years, the amendment to do the fact that this collapse occurred much earlier, much earlier.

The main work in the life of Starinov is that despite the favorable circumstances, he found the strength to start all over again from scratch. Every time military and party officials, who often have never had any experience except the experience of the parquet sharkun, trampled his work in the dirt. But, thank God, he did not give up, knowing that the officials come and go, but Russia remains. He served Russia and the Russian people and embodies the best qualities of this nation.

Will be very fair, if the name is Starinov will be immortalized on the land of Tver. Here it grew, here the impressions of childhood determined his life path, he first made a regular reconnaissance and sabotage part, which became the prototype of the reconnaissance and sabotage units of spetsnaz GRU and the KGB-FSB.

Remember, Lord, the servant of God Elijah, the soul and the life laid for the Russian people and Russia!


With a low bow to the bright memory of I. G. Starinov.

One of those who have studied the basics of military science in his books and instructions. D. L. Poduskov, a veteran of the GRU of the General staff and the war in Afghanistan, Udomlya.


RELATED MATERIALS: Defence and security
Возрастное ограничение