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Features of formation and stages of development of officer meetings of Russia, present problem


Article acquaints with the history of origin and development of officer meetings of the Russian army, Armed Forces of the USSR and Russia. Work of officer meetings is investigated also as public organization of Russia at the present stage. For the first time classification and a periodization of development of Charters, Rules and Provisions of officer meetings of Russia is given in a historiography.


The article acquaints with the history of origin and development of officer assemblies of the Russian army, Armed forces of the USSR and Russia. The work of officer assemblies is also investigated as a public organization of Russia at the present stage. The author proposes a classification and aperio-disation of development of Charters, Rules and Positions of officer assemblies in Russia for the first time in historiography.

Now the Government of the Russian Federation faces the choice of a way of development of army again, and in this regard questions of history, the theory and practice, welfare activity become especially relevant for formation of Armed forces of Russia. In turn, the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation sets before itself the purpose as much as possible to consider the interests of society during the forming and realization of state policy on defense.

In January, 2007 in Moscow, in the Cultural center of Armed Forces of Russia, the first meeting of Public council at the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation took place. The Deputy Prime Minister of Russia — the Minister of Defence of the Russian Federation Sergei Ivanov opened it. The first meeting of Public council was in many respects organizational. On it regulations of work and the list of workers of the commissions were approved. The chairman of the board of the Union of Cinematographers of Russia and the head of the Russian fund of culture Nikita Mikhalkov was unanimously elected the chairman of Public council. In Public council six commissions are created. The first commission deals with issues of carrying out public ek-

spertiza of federal bills, the second — issues of legal and social protection of the military personnel and civil personnel of the Ministry of Defence, the third — is engaged in cultural and patronage work and interaction with religious and public associations, the fourth considers the questions of interaction from media covering problems of Armed forces, the fifth — covers issues of increase in safety of military service, law and order and discipline in army and on the fleet and the sixth considers questions of increase in prestige of military service, patriotic and spiritual and moral education young pokoleniya1.

In May, 2007 in Moscow there took place the meeting of presidium of Public council at the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation. Already new Minister of Defence of the Russian Federation — Anatoly Serdyukov who noted that the effective solution of the tasks assigned to the military organization of the state is impossible without understanding and support from society opened meetings. Among positive results the beginning of work of parental committees at military units was noted. Considering that since January 1, 2008 for it is called -

the ny military personnel service life is established 12 months, problems with training of soldiers will become still bolshe2. And the created various committees just will not be able to render "positive" assistance in work of army divisions. At the same time most of members of Public chamber of Russia understand that it is necessary to begin with return of the lost moral values, education of respect for a profession of the defender of the Homeland and improvement of a social status voyennosluzhashchikh3.

Among the numerous organizations in Armed Forces of Russia a specific place is held by officer meetings. In the Russian army the similar organizations conducted considerable welfare activity as among the military personnel and civil personnel of parts, and among inhabitants of territories where troops accommodated. Today in the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation such officer meetings can be organized again as their work is defined by the order of the Minister of Defence of the Russian Federation.

We will provide the list considered by officer lists of questions: improvement of vocational training of officers; ensuring social security of officers and members of their families; increase in the general and military culture of officers; holding the outreach actions directed to increase in prestige of military service, the authority of officers; support of the military personnel who arrived for passing of military service, including officers appointed to the first military position; the organization of interaction with public and religious associations, officer meetings of other military units, other organizations; military-patriotic education of youth; the organization of the work connected with care and satisfaction of needs of veterans, disabled people and families of the died military personnel; military education of officers and also discussion of their offenses.

By attentive comparison of the solved problems and officer meetings of Armed Forces of Russia can be found in the commissions of Public chamber a set of the general questions. So, the Public council is simply obliged to pay attention to work of such institute in army as officer meetings which origin and development began more than two centuries ago.

The first officer meeting it is considered to be the Kronstadt nobility assemly which was open on February 6, 1802 and there were more than hundred let4. Under a meeting allocated the average floor of one of houses in Kronstadt where the following rooms entered: dining room, still-room, newspaper, two billiard, two living rooms and dance hall.

Officer meetings were created generally for joint pastime without certain rules and working conditions and covered insignificant number of officers. For collecting small houses or certain rooms were used (persons on duty the room) where officers could read books and newspapers, to play cards and billiards, chess and checkers, to spend free time in organized libraries and "officer restaurants".

To the middle of the 19th century the military meetings or clubs functioned on the basis of charters or governed already in many parts, at the same time for each meeting the forms of work were developed. Rules of club of officers of the city of Revel in 1866 of sailors defined that military personnel and retired generals, the headquarters - and subaltern officers, civil officials, noblemen, honourable citizens, merchants of the first two guilds and their sons can be the member of society. From clubmen the exact performance of resolutions of society, noble tone, mutual respect and courtesy to each other was required, maintaining decencies both in clothes, and in the address, in particular concerning ladies, and due respect for decisions of the foremen elected by society penalties for non-compliance pra-were defined

twisted meetings: remark of the foreman; a reprimand from foremen in a meeting; the announcement of an act of the defendant for data to society; exception of members sobraniya5.

After officer meetings became widespread in army, in 1869 at the Defense Ministry the special commission for development of a question of the structure of military meetings and military bibliotek6 was created. During work the commission developed basic provisions of the organization of officer meetings which entered the Set of military resolutions of 1869. Since this period the officer meetings became an integral part of the Defense Ministry. So, in order No. 8 on the Defense Ministry in 1873 troops were recommended to provide the special means for the device and content of officer meetings, the general dining rooms and libraries.

The order on Defense Ministry No. 289 of November 4, 1874 which entered to the management the Charter of officer meeting for all military meetings as existing, and newly created became a considerable stage in formation of officer meetings. Within ten years forms work of meetings was improved, changes also were made to documents. So, the additional Provision on officer meetings in separate parts of troops was sent by the order on Defense Ministry No. 279 of September 15, 1884. Main objectives — how to deliver to officer society of means for mutual rapprochement of his members and to maintain the correct friendly relations conforming to spirit and the requirement of military service between officers; to promote development among officers of military education; to deliver to officers of entertainment in time, free from service, and to reduce the price of life of officers.

For achievement of these purposes in parts officer meetings with library, the dining room, fencing and gymnastic halls with accessories, billiards, a shooting range and to that podob-were established

to ny. The commander of a part became the chairman of an officer meeting, and all the headquarters - and subaltern officers surely consisted members of officer meeting. The present Provision could be supplemented with private rules of officer meetings of parts. For the next years, changes were made to Situation. One of them allowed meetings to get in property real estate in accordance with general practice.

The popularity of officer meetings in army was indisputable, they were created in many parts of army, only in St. Petersburg by 1914 worked more than 25 officer sobraniy7, at the same time in meetings also questions of public life Rossii8 were considered.

Not accidentally, at the beginning of the 80th of the 19th century articles about need of creation of the general military meeting for the capital — St. Petersburg began to be published in periodicals. In 1893 the former chief of staff of the Guards case general Sku-garevsky took the lead of the device in St. Petersburg of the general military meeting. Having studied setting of affairs in England, France and Germany, it made the plan of the St. Petersburg officer meeting for an image of the Parisian Cercle militare. It was supposed to call the first public military meeting in St. Petersburg the St. Petersburg military circle, and had to take the Charter of officer meetings of 1874 as a basis of the Charter of meeting

Seeking to improve life of officers, its imperial highness, the commander-in-chief of troops of guard and the St. Petersburg military district in the report for 1893 introduced the idea of need of establishment of officer meeting in St. Petersburg where, except 25 generals and till 1100 the headquarters - and subaltern officers of troops of guard, there are about 160 generals and 1300 the headquarters - and subaltern officers of the head and district administration and military institutions and where annually there come more than 3500 generals and

officers, that will be for them undoubted blessing. In 1895 the commission on preparation of documents for the beginning of construction was appointed. Works at the corner of Liteyny Avenue and Kirochnaya Street continued from September 19, 1895 to February 15, 1898. And on March 22, 1898 in the presence of the emperor the officer meeting of army and the fleet which gained recognition not only at officers of garrison, but also inhabitants of Sankt-Peterburga9 at once was open.

The first Charter of meeting defined the following purposes: a) to promote rapprochement among themselves of officers; b) to promote maintenance between them friendly relations in the spirit of military requirements and to development in their environment of the military and general education; c) to reduce the price of life them in the capital; d) to deliver the comfortable, decent and cheap room for temporarily coming in Peterburg10.

At a meeting were: the library, the general hall, the living room, the dining room, billiards and rooms for visitors in whom with the permission of the chairman could were arranged lectures, conversations, war and other games, friendly lunches, balls, concerts, etc. and also shooting, hunting, musical, theatrical, chess and other circles and associations from members and visitors, with the scientific or pleasure purpose. The history of development of the Charter of officer meeting of army and fleet is interesting, after the first statement in 1897 it was considerably changed in 1903 and 1914 11 Today the building is in it District Officers' Club in which try to maintain the main traditions and purpose of the General officer meeting of army and fleet of the Russian army.

Up to 1917 work of officer meetings did not calm down, rules and charters were republished, there were new forms, but at the beginning of 1918 in connection with cancellation of officer ranks also work of officer meetings was stopped.

The attempt of return of officer meetings in the Soviet army was made in

1943 during input of new distinctions of officers — pogon12, but interfered with formation of officer meetings too heartrending experiences for the country.

In the late eighties interest in the history of officer meetings appeared again. On pages of periodicals discussions about need of return of officer meetings were developed. And as the result of discussion was accepted the Order of the Minister of Defence of the USSR No. 186 of May 20, 1989 on enforcement of Provisional regulations for an officer meeting in VS USSR which received a final version in the order MO USSR No. 480 of December 14, 1990

During that period, difficult for the country, in troops officer meetings were created, but officers took passive part in their work, and meetings existed formally. After the collapse of the USSR and creation of the Union of the Independent States in May, 1992 on villages of the Krasnaya Zvezda newspaper the draft of the new Provision (Charter) on an officer meeting of OVS SNG13 was discussed, but realities of that period did not allow to realize conceived.

And yet need of officer meetings for Armed Forces of Russia was confirmed to

in 1992 when the Order of the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation No. 147 of September 12, 1992 enacted the Provision

about an officer meeting in the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation. At the same time tasks in consonance to the former purposes were set for an officer meeting: ensuring social security of officer shots, education of faultless officer honor and advantage, education of the general and military culture. Unfortunately, questions on work of officer meetings appeared much more, than meetings in armies and their existence was reflected in most cases only in paper.

At the beginning of the 21st century officers of service of personnel and educational work of the Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation

continued to look for acceptable forms of resumption of activity of officer meetings. The publication of the order of the Minister of Defence of the Russian Federation No. 435 of December 23, 2004 which entered the Provision on officer meetings in the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation became the beginning of such work.

In new Situation it is defined that officer meetings are intended for unity of group of officers of military unit and other structures of the Ministry of Defence, education of officers in the spirit of devotion to the Fatherland, loyalty to military duty and fighting traditions, strengthenings of military comradeship, development of offers and recommendations to command concerning passing of military service, the solution of the social and other problems arising at officers and members of their families.

In practical activities the officer meetings independently define methods and forms of work which are not contradicting the legislation of the Russian Federation. If necessary it is allowed to approve the additional rules of separate meetings which are not contradicting the purposes and the principles of Situation defining specifics of their activity.

Officer meetings can be created in military units and the organizations of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation which number of officers not less than 10, with a smaller number the joint officer meeting of garrison can be created. In Situation locations of a meeting and the information stand are defined; powers of officer meetings, community sanctions and organization of work.

The history of officer meetings of Russia developed throughout several centuries, at the same time the way of formation passed very not easy, but such form of work was necessary for both army and society. Today officer meetings exist in the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation in many respects formally, they do not resolve issues of spiritual and military education of officer corps. At the present stage in military units the formation of officer meetings only begins and effective methods and forms for the solution of problems are defined. And therefore the research of history of development of officer meetings and their welfare activity in the past and the present has to be continued.

1 What will be advised to military by Nikita Mikhalkov?//St. Petersburg sheets. — 2007. — January 17. — Page 3.

> To serve 2 less and better//the Red star. — 2007. — March 13. — Page 1.

3 Society and army: interaction lessons//Red star. — 2007. — June 15. — Page 8.
4 Kronstadt sea meeting. 1802 — 1902 — SPb.: A. Benke's printing house, 1902. — Page 1 — 22.
5 Rules of the Revel officer club. — Revel: Type. I.G. Gresselya, 1866. — Page 1.
6 Military collection. — 1871. — No. 9. — Page 57 — 103.
7 All St. Petersburg for 1914. Address and reference book of St. Petersburg. — SPb.: The edition of t-va of A.S. Suvorin — "Modern times", 1914. — Page 1097 — 1099.
8 Archive of the Military and historical museum of artillery, engineering troops and troops of communication. T. 51. Op. 96/1. 52. L. 3.
9 A.V. Tikhomirov. St. Petersburg officer meeting of the Russian army and fleet: spiritual and military education: Historical and pedagogical essay: Studies. a grant / Under the editorship of the Dr. filos. sciences, prof. R.H. Bariyev. — SPb.: Military academy of communication, 2005. — Page 6 — 15.
10 Rules of the Revel officer club. — Revel: Type. I.G. Gresselya, 1866. — Page 88.
11 Central state archive of St. Petersburg. T. 569. Op. 13. 596. L. 8.
12 V.I. Vdovyuk. About an officer meeting//the Military and historical magazine. — 1992. — No. 3. — Page 6 — 8.
13 Red star. — 1992. — May 7. — Page 2.
Norbert Arthur
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