The death of Leonid Ilyich Brezhnev, General Secretary of the CPSU Central Committee, on the night of November 9-10, 1982, marked the true "beginning of the end" of the Soviet Union. The time that followed is today evaluated differently. Someone sees in him only the highest point of the gerontocracy that amazed the USSR and will deign to joke about the “era of carriage races”, referring to the ceremonial funerals of the “Kremlin elders” who followed one another.
Someone sees in the intricacies of personnel changes in the Kremlin, which in just four years brought the one who destroyed it to the top of power in the most powerful state in the world, a chain of coincidences and accidents ... Someone speaks of "historical regularity" - they say, the USSR and the communist ideology fell because it could not be otherwise ...
All this, of course, is not true. It is worth taking a closer look at the chronicles of those years, carefully studying and trying to comprehend the memories of the direct participants in the dramatic and even tragic events that took place on the Soviet power "Olympus" in the last period of its existence, so that it became clear that everything was much more complicated, confusing and mysterious. Little by little, a persistent feeling begins to develop: behind everything that happened in and around the Kremlin, from a certain moment, there was someone's incredibly powerful will, aimed at making the Soviet Union cease to exist. There were no accidents! There was a clear and insidious plan, which, alas, was fully implemented. Below I will try, if possible, to substantiate this point of view as reasonably as possible.
"Are you going the wrong way, comrades"?
As I have already said many times and I will not tire of repeating again and again, the semi-official Soviet historiography, godlessly emasculated and ugly distorted to please mossy political dogmas, subsequently gave the liberals the opportunity to concoct a wretched and primitive version of this, without exaggeration, the most important period of our history. They say that there were old marasmatics in the Kremlin, who finally moved their minds on quotations from the classics of "Marxism-Leninism", and did not see or understand real life at all. They sat, sat, almost played with pasochki, until they died all naturally. And then, out of nowhere, Mikhail Svet Sergeevich came, took the reins in his strong, calloused hands of a combine operator, and led the country into a "new bright future." Well, in fact - to death and ruin, but that is not the point. This is not a sin at all for the liberal public, but a great merit.
The most disgusting thing is that this one, excuse the rudeness, delirium of the gray mare, is taken by many of our compatriots at a completely face value and believe him unconditionally. At the same time, for example, the fact that in many "democratic" countries of the world of that time, which we are talking about, "at the helm" were leaders, a little younger than our "old men", was completely ignored. The same Ronald Reagan, for example, became the President of the United States at 70. Well, that Joe Biden is 78 years old, I will not say anything at all. The truth is that neither Brezhnev, nor Andropov, nor Chernenko were any "vegetables" that fell into senile dementia - all three of the last General Secretary of the CPSU Central Committee. Yes, they could not boast of good health. Why exactly - we will have a separate conversation for that. However, they were not insane "dolls" that did not have their own will and reason.
In fact, our conversation should begin with the fact that true socialism ended in the USSR in 1953, with the death of Stalin. The darkness and horror that followed, called "Khrushchev's rule", was nothing more than the first serious and extremely thorough attempt in postwar history to destroy the Soviet Union. And certainly for the first time they tried to do this not from the outside, not by unleashing aggression or, say, economic blockade, but by the hands of the leader of the party and state. A deep study of the activities of Kukuruznik at the head of the USSR unambiguously testifies that there was not so much left for him to succeed. However, those who still retained at least a drop of “Stalinist leaven”, for whom communist ideology and Soviet power were not empty words, caught themselves. The bald pest was overthrown. Through the efforts of Brezhnev and his team, the explosion of the "time bomb" launched by Khrushchev, which was supposed to blow the USSR to pieces, was prevented.
Nevertheless, the most dangerous processes were neither stopped nor reversed. First of all, the loss of faith in the party and communism as such by the Soviet people, engendered by the XNUMXth Party Congress and the "exposure of the personality cult," grew and deepened. And in the economy, the damage was terrible - the destruction of agriculture alone was worth what. Alas, there were no leaders in the then leadership of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union who had at least a tenth share of the enormous intellect and unbending will of Joseph Vissarionovich ... , comrades! " Alas, he did not rise up and did not shout ... Still retaining the strength and power created and laid down for the future by the great Leader, the country was inexorably sliding towards decline.
Who actually appointed the General Secretary?
The fact that Brezhnev would soon need a successor became perfectly clear back in 1976, after the General suffered a very real clinical death. The change of power in the Kremlin was only a matter of time and the West was well aware of this. I will not even try to build unambiguous versions about which special services of which countries began a special operation unprecedented in scale, audacity and thoughtfulness, the purpose of which was to bring to power in our country those who wipe it out from political world maps. Most likely, a whole "community" of the most serious organizations and structures worked here, which were capable of, if not everything, then a lot. Those who conceived this colossal game were well aware that it is impossible to win such a battle in one round in principle.
Consequently, it was necessary to play the notorious "multi-move", to build a whole chain of personnel changes in the upper echelons of the CPSU and the USSR, which ultimately will allow the "queen" of those very necessary people. And isn't that how it worked out in the end? In fact, each new change of faces in the Kremlin offices brought Gorbachev and his team closer to them. Yuri Andropov, who replaced Leonid Brezhnev as General Secretary of the CPSU Central Committee, was not supposed to be at the head of the party and state in any case! There is more than enough evidence that Leonid Ilyich saw anyone as his successor, but not this native of the Lubyanka. As far as is known, he transferred him to the Central Committee, and to a rather symbolic post of second secretary, to remove from the post of the head of the State Security Committee, to deprive him of too many opportunities.
There is a popular version that Andropov, while still the head of the KGB, allegedly tried to organize a natural "palace coup" in the 70s in order to overthrow the still capable Brezhnev. He was going to do this with the hands of some "trusted marshals and generals from the Armed Forces" who were supposed to appear to Leonid Ilyich and demand that he "leave in an amicable way." I hardly believe in this - most of all it looks like a cheap "remix" of the Khrushchev coup, as a result of which Lavrenty Beria died. One way or another, but no obvious attempts to get ahead until a certain time on the part of Yuri Vladimirovich were not recorded. But something else - just happened. By a strange "coincidence" of circumstances, from a certain moment it was with those people who stood in his way to power that extremely unpleasant incidents began to occur, even tragic ones. We will certainly talk about the terrifying chain of very, very strange deaths that took place in the 70s - 80s of the last century in the highest echelons of the party and government of the USSR in the most detailed way, but only next time.
Now, without going into details, I will note - "the right people" died "at the right time." However, not only died. The first secretary of the Leningrad Regional Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, Grigory Romanov, who could easily replace Brezhnev as General Secretary, was put out of the game by a wave of dirty rumors, the most ridiculous of which was the story of "his daughter's wedding." It allegedly took place in one of the royal palaces with a completely unimaginable and frantic revelry, the crown of which was the beating of the beloved service of Catherine II, withdrawn from the Hermitage for such an occasion. Tellingly, it was Andropov who refused Romanov to use the Committee's capabilities to suppress the wave of false compromising evidence that was skillfully and purposefully spread by someone.
Springboard for Gorbachev
After the events mentioned above (which is typical, during which the Western "radio voices" were especially zealous in the repeated repetition of particularly vile insinuations about Romanov, who clearly received the appropriate instructions), the "favorite" among the possible candidates for the role of Brezhnev's successor was the first secretary of the Communist Party of Ukraine Volodymyr Shcherbitsky. It is possible that before these events, too. According to some reports, feeling that he is rapidly surrendering, the Secretary General made a choice in favor of this particular candidacy back in the mid-70s. And there was why. Shcherbitsky certainly never was a senile, he had remarkable health and popularity, at least in his own republic he enjoyed considerable. There is a great deal of evidence that from a certain moment Leonid Ilyich saw him and only him in the role of his own "heir". I was not even shy about talking about it aloud. Moreover, shortly before his own death, Brezhnev committed an act that was decisively breaking out of the "Kremlin protocol" and the usual practice of the "top officials" of the USSR - for the urgently needed personal conversation with Shcherbitsky, he did not call him to Moscow, but he flew to him in Kiev ...
It is very likely that the head of state intended to talk about things that were not just super important, but about those that in no case should have reached the ears of the "rumors" that filled the Kremlin. Personally, I am inclined to believe the version in which Leonid Ilyich firmly decided to announce his resignation from the post of General Secretary to the symbolic post of Chairman of the CPSU and the appointment of Shcherbitsky as General Secretary at the Plenum of the Central Committee, which was to take place either on November 13 or 15, 1982. But he did not have time, having left for another world. At the same time, by the way, just before his death, Brezhnev felt very cheerful.
Shcherbitsky (again a coincidence ?!) It was at this fateful moment that he found himself on a business trip in the United States, which, according to the opinion, Andropov "helped" him. Upon learning of Brezhnev's death, Vladimir Vasilyevich tried to immediately return to the USSR, but he was simply not allowed to do so. And Yuri Andropov became the General Secretary ... Someone today is trying to assert that this man was a "fanatical communist" and was almost going to "restore the Stalinist regime" with all its austerities. What is the basis for such conclusions? Because of the ridiculous raids "to identify truants and parasites", as a result of which frightened schoolchildren ran away from cinemas, and aunts with curlers on their heads from hairdressers? Do not be ridiculous ... Much more important than such obviously populist and not having serious consequences of the event was that it was Andropov who made every effort to promote both Mikhail Gorbachev himself and some others to power as far and higher as possible " prominent perestroika ", such as Ligachev and Yakovlev. Everyone in this vile-glorified trinity of Judas is precisely Andropov's direct proteges.
Can we assume that a person who for many years headed the world's strongest intelligence service and, in essence, was obliged to see people “through and through” without any X-ray, could have made such a cruel mistake, and more than once? Personally, I’m sure not in any way. Andropov, paving the way for the future "foremen of perestroika", perfectly understood what he was doing and why. As a matter of fact, the rapid rise of precisely these of his nominees was the main result of the short rule of Yuri Vladimirovich. And yet, the forces that were behind everything that happened did not succeed in immediately reaching the “maximum program”. Andropov was replaced in the Kremlin not by Gorbachev, but by Konstantin Chernenko, who was his complete opposite.
Why did it happen? Did the Soviet Union have the notorious "last chance"? How many prominent members of the party and the Soviet government were killed for the sake of coming to power and the final victory of the "perestroika"? We will definitely talk about all this next time.