"Criminal Revolution". Could Russia have avoided the "dashing 90s"?

Last week, on November 10, Russia celebrated the Day of the employee of the internal affairs bodies, which for many of our compatriots still retains its true name - the Day of the Soviet Militia. Alas, with the collapse of the USSR, law enforcement agencies ceased to be Soviet, and then completely turned from militia into police. However, the name is not the point ...

Today we will talk about the period that lies between these two events and to this day is the subject of fierce disputes and various speculations - about the so-called "dashing 90s". It will be about the time when our country and, in particular, those who were obliged to defend law and order in it, faced an unprecedented increase in crime, primarily organized. And the main question to which we will try to find an answer is whether it was possible to prevent the bandit riot, which cost tens of thousands of people lives and caused damage to our state, the consequences of which are felt to this day?

Born by "perestroika" ...

Subsequently, this time will receive different names - "dashing 90s", "criminal revolution" and so on. I must say that most of these terms are rather dubious. The processes of rapid criminalization of society began in the last years of the existence of the Soviet Union, at the time, in fact, and pushed the country of "perestroika" to banditry. And they did not end with the onset of the new millennium - this, alas, is a fact. As for the 90s, someone from the writing fraternity came up with it, Mikhail Weller, I think. In addition, it is not worth calling the murky waves of crime that swept over not only Russia, but also the absolute majority of the countries of the “post-Soviet space” with the loud word “revolution”. Fortunately, the "lads", who were eager for all this, did not receive the final power over the state and full control over its resources. Hence - an attempted coup, as a maximum.

Having more or less sorted out the terminology, we can proceed to the main point: how could it have happened that in the “totalitarian” Soviet state, in which, as the current liberals continue to insist, “everything was under complete control”, above all, “punitive bodies ", Suddenly there were criminal gangs numbering thousands and tens of thousands of" fighters "and at the same time" rolling "millions? And not always in rubles? There is an opinion that the fault lies in the stubborn unwillingness of the party-state leadership of the USSR, which has become stagnant in ideological clichés, and even fell into elementary insanity, to recognize the obvious.

Allegedly, it was precisely the denial “at the very top” of the presence of prostitution, drug addiction and, of course, organized crime in the Soviet state that opened the widest road “to the masses” for such people. But smart people in the same militia foresaw everything and even warned: "The lion got ready," "The lion jumped," and so on ... The title of these articles in Literaturnaya Gazeta now says little to most Russians, but when they were published in 1988, it was an all-Union sensation! Well, of course - a lieutenant colonel from the USSR Ministry of Internal Affairs admits the presence of a real mafia in the country! We will return to some moments of the "revelations" of this Colonel - Alexander Gurov a little later. In the meantime, let's dwell on one of them: no matter how ridiculous and wild it sounds today, but the main weapon against domestic organized crime, this high-ranking policeman considered (and, it seems quite sincerely) not to strengthen law enforcement agencies or tighten the relevant legislation, but ... " publicity"! "The mafia must realize that society knows about it and will fight as with a phenomenon ..." As further practice showed, the "lads" wanted to sneeze at publicity, and as for "perestroika" - that is how it became for the domestic organized crime is a real "ticket to life", which allowed to unfold in all its breadth and power. Where did all these murderers, robbers and extortionists come from in our fatherland, and even in such quantities that they managed to turn the utter life of a huge number of their fellow citizens into hell?

In one of the liberal Russian editions, I happened to come across a statement that was stunning in terms of cynicism and incongruity: they say, “during the years of communist rule, so much negative energy has accumulated in the country that everything simply could not but end in an explosion”. Bullshit and shameless lies. Having come to power, our society began to pump up “perestroika” with “negative energy”. The "ideological foundation" of the future criminal hard times was laid precisely by the complete destruction of the moral and ethical values ​​of the Soviet era and their replacement by the cult of enrichment at any cost and worship of the Western "ideal." The social base was created through destruction economics, which gave birth to an army of unemployed, hungry and really embittered people around the world, first of all - young people who did not have any intelligible perspective in the new life realities.

A significant role was played by the regional conflicts that broke out throughout the USSR, almost overnight, which became the sources of both the mass of weapons of army models, and, what is much more terrible, people who are capable and ready to use this very weapon without the slightest hesitation anywhere and when whatever. The total collapse of the Armed Forces and the theft of their property also contributed to the saturation of the underworld with weapons, ammunition, explosives and specialists of the relevant profiles. There was one more thing - the organized crime that emerged in the "post-Soviet space" would never have reached such proportions and would not have risen to such heights as it was in reality, if not for the global processes taking place in the former Soviet republics - such like mass privatization, the transfer of everything and everyone into private hands. However, all this is a background. And what are the origins?

... And the Soviet deficit

Let me put forward and try to substantiate my own hypothesis regarding the emergence in the “post-Soviet space” of numerous criminal communities that have gone down in history as “brigades”. I will make a reservation that there are a lot of such hypotheses. Of course, I will not cite them all here, but I will dwell on only one. In the opinion of its adherents, the "brigades" are a product of the "old" domestic organized crime, that is, "thieves in law" who, with the beginning of "perestroika", received freedom of action. There is a certain amount of truth here, but only very little. Most law enforcement practitioners consider this version untenable. The main proof is the deaths of dozens or even hundreds of thieves in law who fell in an unequal struggle with bandits of the “new formation” - “Komsomol members” or “sportsmen,” as they called them. Yes, in the end, many criminal communities, if not most of them, nevertheless fell under the influence and power of "thieves", but that was later. The root of all evil was different.

Let me suggest: the father of organized crime in the USSR was ... scarcity! Yes Yes! The one about which the great Arkady Raikin joked so talentedly and funny. In the United States, the mafia, bootlegging, and mass gangsterism have been fueled by a shortage of alcohol, which in turn is caused by Prohibition. In our country, the shortage of consumer goods gave birth to "guilds" and racketeers. Here, perhaps, for younger readers and others who are not very familiar with the criminal realities of that time, it is worth explaining who, in fact, these "tsehoviks" were.

As the name implies, these were businessmen who organized clandestine workshops for the production of certain types of goods, while earning absolutely crazy money and with the state, of course, they did not share it. What was the secret of their super-profits and economic success? Tsehoviks, in contrast to the most powerful, but completely incomprehensible to whom and what the domestic industry was oriented towards in the last years of the existence of the USSR, reacted to demand more sensitively than the bones of rheumatism to changes in the weather. They were adventurous, they were inventive, they managed to create money out of nothing, out of thin air ... There is a fashion for rugs - terrible crafts with busty mermaids, swans, as if frozen in an attack of epilepsy, mutant deer and other characters capable of scaring any heroes to death horror movies? The shop workers react instantly - they buy in kilometers from the bum-builders ... fabric for wrapping and heat-insulating pipes! And now, under a stencil cut out on the board, spattered with paint at random, schizophrenic "masterpieces" are born, which once adorned the walls of hundreds of houses and apartments. The cost price is close to zero. The selling price is sixty rubles! People want crystal - please! The glasses bought for seven kopecks in Belarus are turned into "crystal" by acid etching, which are sold, respectively, with a twenty-fold "wrap". Fashion for Cascade chandeliers? Underground workshops are beginning to rivet them too - and in unmeasured quantities. "Rubik's Cube"? Passport covers? Sheets? Yes, even a devil in a mortar! The release of everything that could not be found on the shelves of state stores during the day with fire and that was in high demand, the shop workers mastered instantly.

Naturally, even in workshops that worked quite legally (there were, imagine, there were such), one item out of ten was accounted for and carried out in the accounting department, and even then in the best case. Considering that no tax inspection and, indeed, practically no taxes as such existed then, it is difficult to even imagine in what numbers the purest superprofit that went absolutely past the "bins of the Motherland" was calculated ... Business is business, economic activity, whether it is "white "Or" black ", legal or" shadow ", has its own laws. In full accordance with them, from time to time, various collisions arise, including "economic disputes", mutual non-payments and the like. What should be done by those who cannot apply for the resolution of these disputes to the court, arbitration, or the police? Who will they go to, guess? You guess right! In general, this is elementary - with the development of the "shadow" business, people appear who have huge amounts of money, but are unable to legally protect them. The "economic disputes", conflicts and contradictions that arise in this business are again not possible to settle within the framework of the law. This is where the "lads" enter the scene, whose representatives become guards, guarantors, judges, and, of course, executioners. All over the world, large criminal clans control prostitution, drug and arms trafficking, illegal migration and the like. However, at the same time they regularly try to "get into" the legal, "clean" sectors of the economy, because this is their nature and essence. Having originated like a putrefactive fungus on the sectors of society affected by social "diseases", this infection invariably tries to devour the entire state "organism".

Could it be otherwise?

It is no coincidence that I dwelt in such detail on the prehistory and purely economic prerequisites for the appearance in our country of criminal communities and clans of the type of "dashing 90s". It would be, at the very least, incorrect to blame the law enforcement agencies for “oversleeping”, “patting” and not stopping an attempt at a “criminal revolution”. They all saw, they all knew and very much even tried to fight - despite their own, more than modest at that time, opportunities. This is not only about the ridiculous technical equipment of the same "post-Soviet" militia, which in the late 80s - early 90s did not have normal transport, modern communications and many other things that at that time were necessary components of the material support of their western colleagues.

All this (as well as the beggarly salaries) was largely compensated by the old, still Soviet "hardening" and human potential. The "authorities" of that time for the most part consisted of people who came to the service not to "solve issues" and earn money, but to really fight crime. But they were not allowed to do this! The legislative base, both in Russia and in many other former republics of the USSR, has not changed for years in accordance with the new realities, and knowing all the crime bosses, law enforcement officers simply did not have the opportunity to bring them to justice - articles according to which they can and should would be to bring charges, the Criminal Code was completely absent. Moreover, as I said above, the criminal clans came to the moment of their "finest hour" with a much better groundwork than those who, in theory, had to stop them.

Huge "shadow" capitals, which they could now legalize and put into business without the slightest problems, connections, clear organization, and most importantly, the state that stood on their side, not law enforcement officers policy - this is what became the key to the success of the Russian “godfathers”. Alexander Gurov and Yuri Shchekochikhin, who interviewed him, in 1988 in all seriousness broadcast that “the most favorable time for the domestic mafia was the time of stagnation,” that it was “interested in command methods of managing the economy,” “its salvation is in the bureaucracy, and death in publicity. "... It is funny and painful to read all this today. Life has refuted such naive-pretentious passages in the most ruthless way. Of all the post-Soviet countries, Belarus has and still has the least problems with organized crime. According to authoritative international organizations, she simply is not there! Absent from the word "absolutely" ... And the point is not only in the professionalism and very high status of local law enforcement officers (by the way, the only ones in the post-Soviet space to keep the name "militia"), but again, in general state policy. Where the state has retained the "commanding heights" in the economy, "brigades" simply have "nothing to catch." On the "roofing" of stalls and cafes, you will not roam much and do not really turn around. An attempt by the criminals to "get on their feet" in Belarus was crushed instantly, and in the most harsh way - but the main thing is that a "breeding ground" was not created for them there.

Alas, we have to admit that in the realities that developed in the USSR before its collapse and, accordingly, Russia inherited a surge in crime and the emergence of its organized forms, were completely inevitable. And the blame here lies not with the police generals or prosecutors, but exclusively with those in power who have pushed the country into the abyss of the "criminal revolution."
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  1. steelmaker Offline steelmaker
    steelmaker 14 November 2020 13: 58
    Yes, everything was possible. And the USSR did not have to fall apart. It was not us who said:

    Frames decide everything!

    And if this crime is headed by the state! How to deal with it?
    1. the Saint Offline the Saint
      the Saint (Santa Claus) 14 November 2020 20: 39
      Each country has its own mafia, but only in Russia does the mafia have its own country.
  2. beeper Offline beeper
    beeper 14 November 2020 14: 44
    Clearly stated! good
    It was then signed to "Literaturka" and I remember those Shchekotikhin articles with Gurov's revelations. Then not only did it seem to them not as it turned out! wink
    Not so long ago, giving a public TV interview, EBN's life friend, with aspirations, "praise", called our common hungry murderous "dashing 90s" - "holy 90s"....as the saying goes,

    to whom the war (the inescapable human grief, hunger and devastation), and to whom the mother is familiar (the opportunity to immensely get rich in the deliberately "agitated water" of the post-Soviet state deriban and bloody armed "conflicts" with komrenegatski, and not soberly, "imposed" by local "national presidents "who grabbed" sovereignty, how many schmogli "and" sovereignly "- presumptuously ceased to" lick the loot in a shaggy paw ", this is their ability to" fatten "and hideously tyrannical at the expense of the" privatization "of the nationwide Soviet property and unrestrained fellow citizens ...).

    request By the way, in Belarus and "under Lukashenko", at least even in the "zero years", not everything was so simple and "instantly" with gangster organized crime and lawlessness, as well as with corruption in the "upper echelons" of the police and power in in general (another "office" is engaged in bureaucratic corruption in the Republic of Bashkortostan, which also retained its former Soviet name, but at the local level, it cannot do anything with the "big ones" - it "goes blind" if such an official "gesheftmacher" has a reliable "roof" in the capital and he is in favor with the Minsk authorities ...). request It is enough, for the sake of interest, to visit at least the same, very good, city museum of police and criminalistics of Belarusian Gomel (I liked it, as well as the nearby museum of military history and military equipment, but located closer to the Sozh river embankment, Gomel The "new" museum of local lore then, in the middle of the "tenths", completely disappointed me with its very poor, eclectic and uninformative, "exposure" and inadequate, very overpriced, entrance ticket price), which is closest to the Russian and Ukrainian border - to Bryansk and Chernigov ...
    For an additional fee, an employee of the museum will conduct a tour of the exposition and you can ask to tell in more detail about the 1990s-2000s, which operated with impunity for a long time and was "based in the very heart of an exemplary regional center, next to a monument to Soviet soldiers-liberators and a commemorative sign to those who died prisoners of war, the central stadium and the city circus, a bloody criminal group, according to documents and articles in the local press exposed there, "protected" by high ranks of the police and prosecutors ... and the video on YouTube was about "independent" Belarusian bandits and "werewolves in uniform "-so under the post-Soviet" dictatorship "everything," as elsewhere ", was and is, only Belarusian" gratitude (in all types of their "materialization") "also with a" risk premium "! request
    But yes, in general, the Belarusian militia worked and is working "in the field" much better than the Ukrainian "old militia" and the Maidan "new police", the observance of law and order is greater!
    I can’t compare with the Russian police, because when I was in Crimea, I never had a chance to come into contact with it (well, perhaps, the usual, since Ukrainian times, stage-by-stage “document check” of Ukrainian “minibusters” passing along the Crimean roads, carrying tourists is now "counted" in rubles, and not in hryvnia wink ).
    The Russian police also support law and order on the peninsula, and even the Crimean Turkomans, who, under the Ukrainian authorities, for any reason and without reason, "raised their tail" and Russophobic even at the small-scale household level, after 2014, significantly quieted down. yes
  3. Jacques sekavar Offline Jacques sekavar
    Jacques sekavar (Jacques Sekavar) 14 November 2020 18: 31
    Could Russia have avoided the "dashing 90s"?

    No, no and NO !!!
    The coup d'etat of 1991 under the leadership of Yeltsin became possible against the background of the ideological decay of the CPSU and the decline of the economy, which began after the death of J.V. Stalin and grew until the collapse of the USSR.
    The collapse of the USSR was based on the theoretical illiteracy of the leadership of the CPSU and the state. After J.V. Stalin, career apparatchiks were in charge of the party and the state, who barely read the works of V.I. Lenin, and if they did read it, then with age they completely forgot the essence of his New Economic Policy.
    The administrative apparatus of all countries is always distanced from the population to one degree or another. The purpose of the elections is to renew the administrative apparatus to minimize the gap between the ruling class and the population in order to keep a finger on the pulse and timely prevent possible social unrest.
    The one-party system and the formalization of elections led to the isolation of the leadership of the CPSU from the population and the formation of the so-called. a class of "untouchables" of party and economic leaders.
    This, in turn, led to the formal socialization of production and economic decline, which began to be compensated for by the export of raw materials.
    The consequence of this was a widespread deficit, which gave rise to a large-scale shadow economy and laid the foundation for mass support for a coup d'etat led by Yeltsin.
    At the same time, while supporting the coup, the population did not anticipate the collapse of the USSR and the war for the privatization of state property, as a result of which a class of private owners and oligarchs was formed, ready to fight for their property, not life but to death.
    1. beeper Offline beeper
      beeper 14 November 2020 20: 44
      hi Do not forget what it is under the "reformer" Khrushchev, the USSR destroyed (creating the preconditions for the emergence of "underground" schemers - "shadow entrepreneurs", "guilds" and, "on the support" of the organized crime associated with them!) legal, which means paying taxes to the state in full and legally purchasing the necessary tools, raw materials and semi-finished products for their production, small "artels" and many individual "artisans" responsive to the demand of the population and quickly, right on the ground, satisfying itgiving a profession, earnings and employment to many residents of small towns and townships, in such artels people worked as whole families, without age restrictions, producing a lot of various and necessary products in everyday life!
      During the Great Patriotic War, under J.V. Stalin, many artels were engaged in the priority production of parts and the assembly of weapons and equipment for the belligerent army and, along the way, as far as possible, satisfied the demand of the needy rear population, thereby rescuing the Soviet industry, completely reoriented to "everything for the front, everything for victory!"
      The economic and social role of the Soviet artels has been forgotten, silenced in the post-Stalin years of the "Khrushchev thaw" and "Brezhnev stagnation" (about the "time of the funeral of general secretaries" and Gorbachev's "catastrophe" with his mafia "dry law" it was the Communist Party insinuators of our history!) and therefore is not sufficiently covered in national history, alas!
      So, our inquisitive researchers have something to work on and what is popular to write about in their Articles (including on the Reporter!)! wink
    2. Accidentally Offline Accidentally
      Accidentally 20 November 2020 08: 26
      The coup d'etat in the USSR was prepared in advance and was planned by the KGB of the USSR under the direct control of the General Secretary of the CPSU Central Committee Yu V Andropov ... criminals were also called into service, let's remember how all sorts of patriotic fronts were created, etc. Recall how the one who, on duty, must defend the USSR and the people, General of the Army V. Kryuchkov, the chairman of the KGB of the USSR, in 1988 brought Berl Lazar from the USA a representative of the international mafia, and who obeyed whom. ...
  4. Rashid116 Offline Rashid116
    Rashid116 (Rashid) 19 November 2020 18: 30
    I just started reading, and already I see how the author clumsily leads aside. Invented everyone, and called the main reason "background." Then there was a "redistribution", these same "Komsomol members, athletes" and the "thieves in law" were stupid infantry from those beguiling powers that be. Here they were just sawing our common state property. Well, the faithful six got a little leftovers. Cops, by the way, were also in the topic. Do you know how we screwed the first garbage? He stupidly wanted us to explain that he is a married man and generally decent))). Well, they explained it, but the trash can stuck))). And what do you think they have developed the lads in two years? The answer is simple: finished. You can not read the article, the same blizzard as everyone else on this topic.
  5. Petr Vladimirovich (Peter) 6 December 2020 18: 47
    And in the Czech Republic and Slovakia there are no oligarchs or bandits. From the word in general ...