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Category: History

Alexander Aleksandrovich Zinovyev: "Life long war"


ydayushchiysya the philosopher, the logician, the sociologist, the writer Alexander Aleksandrovich Zinovyev is a person of surprising destiny.

Was born on October 29, 1922 in the village Pakhti-no of the Kostroma region in country family which gradually moved to Moscow by 1946. Served in ranks of the Soviet Army, took part in the Great Patriotic War. After war graduated from Moscow State University where protected candidate and subsequently doctor's theses. Worked at Institute of philosophy of Academy of Sciences of the USSR.

After the publication in the West in 1976 of the novel "Gaping Heights" it was deprived of all academic degrees, ranks, it is deprived of nationality and sent from the USSR with family. In twenty one years of accommodation in the western exile published over 30 books, many of which became world best-sellers. Awarded with a large number of literary and scientific awards, including: European award for the best essay (1978), Medici's Award for the best foreign novel (1979), European award for the best science-fiction novel (1980), International award of Tokvil for social researches (1982), International award Tevere (1992). Recognized as one of the largest logicians of the world. A. Zinovyev with family home only in 1999 after restoration in nationality, returns of academic degrees, ranks, awards to it returned. Now he teaches at Moscow State University of M.V, Lomonosov and at Literary institute of M. Gorky, is engaged in research at Institute of philosophy and Institute of socio-political researches of RAS. In the Moscow humanities university A. Zinovyev heads the Research center. It is regularly published in newspapers, in magazines, gives numerous interviews, participates in conferences, does public statements on social and scientific subjects.

On the eve of the celebration of the 60 anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic War we asked it to tell us about the participation in war with fascist Germany, about the assessment of events of sixty-year prescription. And not only about it.

— Alexander Aleksandrovich, before telling about war, explain, please, what the group of a plot proaleksandr Aleksandrovich Zinovyev was: "Life long war"

tiv Stalin in which you participated in the late thirties, being still a young man?

— I belong to pre-war generation. So I call those who left secondary school in 1938-1940 and who before the war prepared for independent adult life. But at the same time my destiny is not typical. It — is exclusive because I in school days became an anti-Stalinist and participated in a terrorist small group which planned to kill Stalin. To some extent it was childishness.

— In group there were your age-mates?

— Yes. We could not realize the intentions, it was not so simple to organize attempt at Stalin. But we had quite serious intentions. And if we were exposed, then, of course, would be destroyed. In the same time, in 1939 I graduated from school and entered the Moscow Institute of philosophy, literature and history (there was such institute, it was liquidated during the war). At us on a course exposed other group, too anti-Stalinist. They prepared attempt too. They were repressed, of course. I do not know what became with their heads, and participants of group were given for 25 years of term. I already met one of them after 1956, he served 18 years in prison. So it was very serious business.

But it turned out so that I was arrested not for belonging to this group, and for performances against Stalin's cult, on a denunciation of friends. By then I already had views which I do not refuse still. But when the investigator interrogated me on Lubyanka, he did not believe that I developed these views. I then was not also seventeen years old. The investigator decided that there are some other adults, wanted to find them. But, perhaps, he had some other plans, maybe, it was required even to this business someone to drag in to inflate some serious business.

Decided to transfer me to the special apartment of security service. Then there were such places where employees met the informers, agents, conducted work. With me there had to live two officers to whom was instructed to spend time with me, to study my environment and to look for those who trained me in all this.

— Some freedom was provided to you?

— Almost any. I had to be under their supervision all the time. Could leave the apartment, but together with them. But at once on the street at us the hitch turned out, and I left.

— Ran away?

— Just left. Then, already many years later, learned that I was put on the state wanted list, I was looked for. Then I simply felt it, wandered over the country. And, after all, disappeared in army. That is, I not the volunteer left to be at war, and just disappeared in army... At that time there were many young people who without documents wandered about the country. Among them there were also criminals. Once I earned a living with group of such children, unloaded with them cars at the station. The militia suited on us a round-up. We were seized. Also offered the choice: or we will be sent to prison, or we will go to serve to army. I chose the last.

— When you made such decision, you should be issued somehow. You could not call the surname. How did arrive?

— Yes, my documents remained on Lubyanka. When I wandered over the country, gradually typed any references. It was represented by the student who is for health reasons on the academic vacation. And documents allegedly stole from me, showed different references. How did receive them? Where earned additionally, issued me certificates that I worked.

Changed a surname several times, at the same time tried that sounded probably on my real name that most not to get confused. Zanovov went to army in 1940 under a surname. Served in the Far East in cavalry troops.

At the beginning of 1941 the Far East army was disbanded, its parts began to throw on the West. We perfectly knew,

that there will be a war with Germans, and we are transferred for this purpose.

— After you hit in races, then disappeared in army, you gave about yourself news to the family?

— No, I then would be found at once and would be grabbed. Mother knew that I disappear. In the beginning I had a moment when I glanced to her to the village. From the area there arrived the employee of bodies, but I managed to see mother and ran away again.

>. I met war in Ukraine, is close to old border. I began service in a cavalry in the Far East, but then it was necessary to change a type of military forces. Became interested in me in special department as I told one friend on myself, and it informed. When our regiment was thrown to Ukraine, I managed to run away to a tank regiment, to disappear now there.

— How?

— We were built after arrival. We were addressed by the commander of a tank regiment. He asked: "Who is able to handle the motorcycle?". Has to admit that in life never drove the motorcycle. Neither up to this point, nor then. But as I felt danger, without hesitating, told: "I". The commander of tankmen took away my documents and took away me in the regiment.

— How you got out? Your deception would open, and at once.

— Did not get out in any way. Just admitted that I am not able to drive the motorcycle. I was left because, oddly enough, I was only to a regiment who had a secondary education. Even the commander of a regiment had no secondary education! I therefore was appreciated, I taught officers to the diploma, helped with staff work including with the translations as knew German a little.

Even prior to war the order which is allegedly signed by Stalin on that those who had secondary education and were healthy were selected in aviation schools appeared. I passed the commission and had to be sent to aviation school. But war began, I just did not manage to pass there, and some time to me is necessary to be involved in war on the earth.

Though the regiment was tank, it was not necessary to be at war on tanks. At this time our best tanks, including "T-34" were already invented, but they were not entered into mass production. The beginning of war was followed by panic and retreats a pedestrian image, without tanks...

— Could you remember the first days of war in more detail?

— That war just about will begin we well knew. Already on June 19th we were given "mortal" medallions with our data including with information on a blood type. We hid these medallions in a special pocket of trousers. Left barracks in the same day, came to fighting positions. But then us for some reason returned to barracks, tanks put to the park, shells handed over on a warehouse.

Then the reason of this absurd became known to me: Stalin wanted to delay the beginning of war by all means. After all technically we did not manage to be prepared for war, we lacked few years to arm army with modern weapon. Except modern tanks, we had also no planes. The best planes, ingenious "Il-2" on which I had to fly then were invented too, but they were put in mass production only in a year...

I had to be involved in fighting on the direction: Minsk — Orsha — Smolensk. At this time I was twice wounded. But wounds were not really serious: one absolutely trifling, the second — is more serious (the bullet scratched a shoulder). But I did not go all the same to hospital and correctly made. In several days the hand passed, and I could move it. And our army receded and sometimes is so prompt that threw hospital, did not manage to take out wounded. And Germans shot all of them, I know such cases.

— In the beginning wars many our soldiers gave up in captivity, and you saw how it occurred.

— Yes, it is known that then about three million people gave up in captivity. But it occurred not so simply. Not soldiers gave up in captivity. The whole armies, cases, huge divisions were given.

On this subject it is much written. Accuse usually Stalin management. But I consider that it is unfair. Germans were very well prepared for war, they had an experience, commitment. They wanted to finish war in the fall and planned to organize the parade at Red Square on the seventh of November. Therefore the pressure was the most powerful. Kind of we prepared, all the same it was impossible to sustain it. Armies were given because they were surrounded. Them deprived of means of food, there was no ammunition, shells. They simply could not function. The critics considering that it was all the same possible to resist, be transferred there would try. You know how Shota Rustaveli spoke: "Everyone thinks himself the strategist, looking fight from outside"...

— You told in one of an interview that you refused to give up in captivity.

— What means ""? I was not one. One you will not battle. All this is relative. Yes, I did not remove distinctions, did not lay down arms. The group in which I appeared covered retreat of a part. We were several people. When Germans went to us, we began to shoot. They decided not to risk and just bypassed us. We looked: there are no Germans. Went to catch up with a part. When caught up, saw that some of parts were already surrounded by Germans.

Now it is difficult to explain all this in accurate formulations, so difficult there was a reality. Some great number of soldiers, officers removed distinctions, we did not begin to do it. It does not mean that we differed from them in big heroism. Sometimes it was even unknown where there are Germans, it was unclear where to shoot.

We joined then other division which departed is more or less organized, included us in the structure. We were just lucky! If we remained with those who were going to give up, then very much I doubt that I would survive. When all

it began — retreat, panic and other — I told myself at once that I will not give up in captivity under no circumstances. I on character do not take out when someone offends me, offends. Surely would flare up, and I would be finished off at once...

I do not approve surrender. But I saw that only separate divisions could resist, and they did it. It is impossible to represent everything so that all gave up. Fights were going, and very serious damage was caused to Germans. Despite big losses, the great cause was made: blitzkrieg was broken. This our most important achievement of an initial stage of war. Fascists were put in such position that they were doomed to long war, and they were not ready to it. They even had to bring a winter form only to the parade at Red Square. Because of it they even slowed down offensive at Moscow, as used our command.

— When you passed into aircraft in which you were defined in the beginning?

— Got to aviation school at the end of 1941. Studied at first at one aviation school, on the fighter. But we studied by such cars which already became outdated and were removed from arms already at the very beginning of war. Then it was necessary to be retrained quickly. In other school I began to study on the attack plane.

In 1942 at us was having rummaged in study. Many cadets were temporarily deducted and sent to land wars. It was connected with the Battle of Stalingrad. As I was a tankman before, I was sent to tank troops again. Participated in operations, but not in Stalingrad, and to the north. Returned to aviation school together with survived. Graduated from it in 1944 and already the rest of war to the end was in various assault regiments. Passed Poland, Germany, was in Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Austria.

Finished war on May 11, 1945. Though war was actually ended, one German army did not want to be given to us, wanted to be given to our western allies. Ordered

that army the general Sherner, still I remember his surname... We flew on them, fired, bombed to prevent them to leave to allies.

— They had no planes to be protected?

— No, was not any more. Our army began to command the air since 1944. And in general from now on all initiative was in hands of the Soviet Army.

The last air fights with Germans at us were at storm of Berlin. Then for the first time Germans used the turbojet Messershmidty-263 aircraft. I had to meet them once. Them only two planes took off. We are not fighters to enter with them equal fight. Attack planes to protect itself, closed a circle, and shooters fired at enemy planes from machine guns. Messershmidta tried to attack, but we shot back. Then our fighters helped. They brought down one "Messersh-midt".

By this time all enemy airfields were destroyed, and Messershmidta flew up from very wide Highway "Berlin — Warsaw". We also destroyed by bombing it. Then at them already nobody could rise in air. When we flew on Shernera army, in air already there were no German planes at all. They even had no serious antiaircraft artillery, shot with rifles, machine guns.

— You saw these years many people in an extreme situation. What most of all struck you, it was remembered from behavior, actions, words? Not how many heroic, and just extraordinary.

— There were most various events, it was difficult to strike with something someone. During war also mistakes, of course, were made. I not just was involved in war, and was the observer, the researcher. Intention to investigate reality at me arose in school days. In war I observed everything and took good note. But not at once learned to understand, give the correct assessment.

Here I told a story about June nineteenth, 1944, about how we were returned

from fighting positions. Of course, then I perceived it as absurd, was indignant: "Than they think there?"... There passed years. I rethought a lot of things. Now, of course, my understanding of what occurred, other. I began to consider war events, being guided by the principle: "It is not pleasant to you, but what you would make, be you on Stalin, Zhukov's place?". And, as a rule, I answered myself: "It is better arrive them I could not". It is necessary to take in what conditions there lived the country into account. Pre-war conditions were extraordinary difficult. Against our country the fight of the West went continuous. The Stalin management, command, the system of the power and management of those times, the most active part of the population — everything acted in the best way for those specific conditions. Therefore I very much highly appreciate conducting this war from the USSR.

Ingenious. It became one of decisive factors of our victory. By the beginning of war we in the USSR had the educational level of the population above, than in Germany. It is possible to tell that war was won by the Soviet tenth-grader. War became dragged-out and accepted such character that the huge number of people with education was required. Very quickly prepared a huge number of pilots, completed all aircraft. Literally in two-three months of the boy became good infantry lieutenants. And if children were semiliterate, they could not study and fly by the first-class cars. The same both with artillery, and with tank troops. A huge number of people was engaged also in headquarters. It is for some reason suppressed. And investigation, staff and advocacy work — all this played a huge role too. This work was performed by educated people, at least tenth-graders. One of factors of defeat of Germans is that they had a deficiency of officers. We did not have it.

If to speak about heroism. Do not think that so heroic people everything were. As

the rule, people refuse battles, deprivations, dangers. Ten such which sought to evade were the share of one Alexander Matrosov. And the mass heroism, really, was, but not because people started consciously making acts. All had an opportunity for a heroic act not. The vast majority had in general no opportunity to do some fighting properly. It is difficult to count, but a considerable part of soldiers was killed, without having made any shot...

— Tell, please, about your operations, about war decorations.

— I would not like to speak in detail on this subject. All the time I was in army on the run. And I had a number of cases when I was recommended for decorations, but could not receive them. Or it turned out so that for one reason or another awards disappeared.

In this regard I can tell only about one episode. I was always indifferent to awards, and after this case became stronger in the attitude towards them at all, overcame everything, as for vanity.

War went already in Germany. We stormed two German fortresses of Glogau and Breslau surrounded with our troops. They long resisted. Battles went so that in one house there were Germans, and in another — ours. We could not use heavy bombers. It was necessary to conduct literally pointed firing. Only attack planes could participate. But for this purpose it was necessary to photograph at first from air the place, to carefully study alignment of forces.

Directed me as I was considered as the smooth pilot to a task, that is did not make during flight of sharp movements. Installed a film photomachine gun in my machine. I had to take pictures. It was necessary to dive on the city, without pulling the car, most smoothly. It was dangerous as storm antiaircraft fire was conducted with the earth. Usually we avoided firing, maneuvering, and here I was faced by a task: to go smoothly, just without maneuvering... What I also made. In this flight my car received

thirty two holes. I fell short of airfield and sat down by miracle. What I removed was used by both attack planes, and artillery of land troops. The commander of land army presented me for one this flight to an award of the Battle Red Flag.

But then there was a next story. To us sent to a regiment from a political department of one major which needed to give a war decoration. For this purpose it had to participate in fights. Put the shooter to me as to the smooth pilot. And flights then already were absolutely safe. I also decided to podhuliganit. Began to pull the car. The major pulled out, he never by planes flew before. When we returned back, I, threatening him with a gun, ordered it to wash the car.

— And he did not want it to do?

— Refused! I am a lieutenant, and he is a major. But I forced it to clean the car, having pointed on it weapon. He obeyed. History on that would also come to an end, but he disheveled about it. I received ten days of arrest, and me set aside from an award. And awarded the order to it the Battle Red Flag!.

If sensibly to argue, of course, did right thing: some lieutenant threatened with a gun to the major from a political department of army! For it I could please under tribunal at all. But me set off my merits, and I got off just with 10 days.

— In army you disappeared, you had and to be concealed further, you engaged in combat with higher officers... At you some war in war turns out.

— Yes: war in war. From time to time, in one regiment on me materials, murder will out begin to collect, my views all the same broke outside. And then I used any opportunity to get over in other part. It cannot be interpreted as desertion. I not to the back got away somewhere, and remained at the front, changing troops. I considered in general that the safest place for me where kill... There least of all look for. This is true. When war

came to an end, then what it is possible to call "front freedom" disappeared. I most conveniently felt in such situations when there was a danger when could kill.

— Your personal war began before this war and continued after it. It is possible to call all your life war?

— Yes, I all life live actually in fight. Since boyish years I developed for myself my understanding of reality which essentially differs also from official communistic ideology, and from western. Defended it, without reckoning with anything. Since youth I learned to overcome sensation of fear and so thoroughly learned that after this any act in life I did not make under the influence of fear.

I had a year of horror, after escape from Lubyanka. I will wish nobody such life... When I got to army, for me it was as the earthly paradise. Kind of there it was not difficult, but I had a guaranteed food, the place for a dream. My life developed so that for the first time I slept on a separate bed only when it appeared on Lubyanka. Before I never had a separate bed, I lived with the family in one room of ten square meters, and we were eight people.

When war with Germans began, I, admit, was even delighted. We were brought up as patriots, in the spirit of words: "We do not want others earth, but also the span we will not give". Also were at war with these beliefs. In the beginning wars I had such playful poem: "It came — long-awaited war". I not could expect what nightmare it will become...

I saw much as people felt fear including when capitulated, they gave up to Germans — people were just in a deranged state for horror. I in such state never was. Was involved in the military operations without fear, even with pleasure. Physically there was very hardy, though not an athlete. To some extent my personal war which I continued during the war was my rescue.

If war did not begin, for certain would find me, of course.

— If you apprehended the beginning of war with such peculiar pleasure, you could not be upset when it ended?

— Kind of to tell you... During the war people lived. In difficult conditions, but lived. War is life, but terribly heavy. And dreadfully boring. I about it wrote once the following in the poem:

War is expectation of the end,

Souls not healing wound.

The essence is banal: the killed are silent,

The living rascal extols a feat, Accidentally survived are silent,

Nobody wants to remember them that,

Without feeling for the past of guilty.

chiefs Spin military science,

Also writers romanticism of war, the Next stupefying boredom lie.

That is war — it was life, and boring to loathing. Naturally, I was glad that it came to an end. But for me my personal war did not come to an end. And it continues still.

If I would be recognized officially for what I made in the life in science, in logic, in sociology, in literature, then it is hard to say how my fate would be. But I had no official recognition and is not present. Also will not be. I am kept in a condition of fight all the time. To me there is the eighty third year now, but I all the same write, I work, I develop the new ideas. My battle will end when life stops...

— Who your enemies?

— During the war the enemy was clear, but Germans were not my personal enemy. Germans and Germany were an enemy of the country. During the war I fulfilled just a duty. Also behaved as the man should conduct. But I cannot call any German about whom I would tell that it is my enemy. Other people were my personal enemies: they were both before war, and during it (and it were no Germans!), and after war.

Since youth I saw and understood that all that is told by ideology and promotion - it is a lie. Actually everything is in a different way. To us, for example, imparted Marxist beliefs, learned about basis and a superstructure and so on. But I saw that all this is nonsense! I in school days raised, for example, a question: "There was before revolution a communistic basis or not?". There was no it! How actually did the Soviet society appear? There were ideas, they began to extend, there were revolutionaries, Lenin, the organization of professional revolutionaries, revolution broke out. The case was presented, and the group of revolutionaries led by Lenin seized power. This group began to create the new system of the power — Soviet. And already this system of the power began to create new economic basis: nationalized lands, factories, the plants. Destroyed a feudal system, capitalists, began to hold collectivization, industrialization. Here what was actually! This reality had with the Marxist doctrine nothing in common. In school days I for it was called in appropriate authorities, from me took a subscription that I did not speak about it. People even spoke to me: "Perhaps, you are also right, but it is impossible to speak about it. There is a line of party, installation, and you have to follow all this". Therefore who was my enemy? The one who prevented to develop my ideas, to state them.

I made discoveries in the field of logic. All knew about it. But any recognition! The western logicians begin to develop what I opened thirty years ago just now. And ours before them holuynichat. Among them there are those who once were my pupils. Who then my enemy? Nobody forces these people, all of them do voluntarily. Also the situation and in understanding of the social phenomena is.

— If on real war weapon is the rifle, a machine gun, artillery, then what main weapon at you against your enemies in your war?

— I have no weapon, except my brain. And then in youth I developed certain principles. Those people who got acquainted with it for fun called it "zinovyogy". In some books it is described. Its principles, for example, such: I never crossed to nobody the road, I refused any career, was content with a minimum of material benefits.

— There is also such weapon as revenge...

— If I also revenged, then only to those that existed and worked. And what I did was better, than at others. It also caused great rage. I did not seek for enrichment, for any formal recognitions. My main weapon is what I wrote. Something was printed. My works on logic admitted in the West, there ranked me as the largest logicians of the world. I was engaged in sociology. My work on the theory of communism in the West was recognized as the first and only scientific work about communism. Got for it an award of Tokvil. In Russia it is ignored. For sociologists I do not exist as the sociologist.

I was created and lived the life as the cogitative car, always wanted to understand, understand and only to understand. The truth, the truth and only the truth! At any cost, despite everything. I waged and I conduct the war. In it there were losses and achievements. I cannot tell that my life passed in poverty, I was able to earn a living, became also the candidate of science, the doctor, professor.

I do not complain of life. When I say that sociologists do not recognize, it is not the complaint, it is statement of the fact. As the person understanding laws of life I consider that it is normal. From people I also do not wait for another. Moreover, if so it turned out that my master's thesis about Marx's "Capital" was accepted, it would work in favor of Marxism. There nothing anti-Marxist was. I would be recognized as the Marxist. But it could spoil to me life! Therefore I am grateful to my enemies for the fact that all life they kept me in good "sports" shape.

Ch.K. Dargyn-ool talked

Mildred Smith
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