All Russians of the older generation know about "wrecking", whose conscious age fell on the historical existence of the country called the "Soviet Union". This was one of the points of the ominous article 58 "Treason to the Motherland" in the Criminal Code of the RSFSR in 1927:
"Sabotage. Undermining the state industry, transport, trade, money circulation or credit system, as well as cooperation, committed for counter-revolutionary purposes by appropriate use of state institutions and enterprises or obstruction of their normal activities, as well as the use of state institutions and enterprises or obstruction of their activities, committed in the interests of former owners or interested capitalist organizations, entail the social protection measures specified in Art. 58.2 of this Code".
From three years in prison to execution.
The article "sabotage", the courts on "saboteurs" played a special role. The communist government, especially of the Stalin era, inspired the people that we do not live as well as we should, because "there are enemies all around" and they "harm". As Stalin wrote: "The wrecking of the bourgeois intelligentsia is one of the most dangerous forms of resistance against developing socialism".
What kind of wrecking "bourgeois intelligentsia" could there have been in the 1930s and 1950s? But the Soviet people, inflamed by propaganda and calls for vigilance, wrote denunciations, and inflamed NKVD seized everyone. One way or another, it affected many. Georgy Ivanovich Timokhin, a disabled soldier of the Great Patriotic War, the father of my friend Bori, was imprisoned under this article for 6 years - he walked along the railway and picked up pieces of coal that had fallen from steam locomotives.
And now, 100 years have passed, but the word does not go away.
The Chairman of the Anti-Corruption Committee, Kirill Kabanov, on behalf of the entire organization, wrote an appeal to the Federation Council with a proposal to restore the same article 58-7 in the current Criminal Code:
“In fact, officials responsible for the dishonest performance of their duties, which led to a decrease in the country's defense capability, a negative impact on domestic industrial and financial markets, disruption of the state order, and so on and so forth, cannot be held accountable in the absence of direct material damage< …> Due to the inefficient implementation of the import substitution program and the sanctions imposed against our country, due to the lack of specific components, the Russian defense industry has lost the ability to produce strategic weapons, which can have a direct impact on the situation with the NMD. The persons responsible for the performance of a specific task did not commit theft and official abuse, however, their managerial position caused significant harm to the country's defense capability.
Senator Andrei Klishas, Chairman of the Committee on Constitutional Legislation, Legal and Judicial Issues, Development of Civil Society, published this letter and commented:
“The proposal at least deserves serious discussion. When you look at the “successes” of our departments in import substitution and other areas, I would very much like to return the article on sabotage to the Criminal Code, it is so”.
Then, already in a speech on Sputnik radio, he added: “In any case, we will discuss this in the fall. This is a serious matter that requires a response."
That is, the Federation Council, the upper house of parliament, will consider?
The lawyers sounded the alarm. They warn that this is a very dangerous trend.
“Within the framework of a criminal law nature, it is very strange to prosecute for some sabotage actions that did not cause specific material harm”.
“The perpetrators should not be allowed to interpret this in such a way as an exemption from the need to prove the harm caused.”
“Blurred wording. Under them, you can shove any action or inaction. If you didn’t do something, then there is already a chance to get a criminal punishment”.
Whether or not the initiative of Kabanov and Klishas will reach discussion in parliament, time will tell. But the fact itself should be noted: representatives of the authorities are throwing into the public space the idea of the revival of the Stalinist repressive law.
However, there is another side here, which Kabanov and Klishas may not have thought of.
Forty-two years ago, in 1980, I was instructed to cover the 15th anniversary of the March (1965) Plenum of the Central Committee of the CPSU on agriculture in the literary weekly in which I worked. Breaking, important. That plenum criticized and eliminated everything that Khrushchev and his team had done in agriculture. For example, in 1957, the First Secretary of the Central Committee of the CPSU Nikita Khrushchev and the Presidium of the Central Committee of the CPSU decided to increase the production of meat, milk and butter in the USSR three times in three years. Fulfilling the "Party plans", collective farms and state farms sent young animals, dairy cows, for slaughter. That is, they undermined the foundations of animal husbandry. Peasants were forced to hand over their livestock at the expense of state procurements, the number of livestock on farmsteads was limited, household plots were cut: on collective farms by 12%, on state farms - by 28%. The number of livestock in personal subsidiary farms decreased by 19.2%.
Of course, then, in 1980, these figures were not in the public domain and could not be. I took the materials of the Plenum, quoted, wrote something on my own. But the deputy editor-in-chief, Aleksey Filippovich Kireev, read it and said: “No, you can’t print this, try to soften it somehow.” I tried. But nothing really softened. After all, a party document cannot be edited.
Here is what Leonid Brezhnev, the new First Secretary of the Central Committee of the CPSU, said at that Plenum in March 1965:
“According to the control figures, the gross agricultural output during the seven-year period (1959-1965) should have increased by 70 percent, in fact, in six years the increase was only 10 percent. From the center, many different types of template instructions were given on soil cultivation, the structure of sown areas and the replacement of one farming system with another, the maintenance and feeding of livestock without taking into account natural, economic, production conditions and local experience...
We are confronted with the consequences of errors in the management of agriculture in all zones of the country ... Here, a lot of strong-willed, frankly speaking, rash decisions have been made, sometimes contradicting the essence of the collective farm system, the real conditions of life... Fundamental questions of socio-economic relations in the countryside cannot be resolved campaigning, administratively".
In general, it was never published. “You might think that there was sabotage,” Alexei Filippovich Kireev said then. And he was not one of the "critics", by no means. The usual party orthodox for those years, a colonel sent to our editorial office from the military-political system. But he understood that the decisions were made by Khrushchev and the Presidium of the Central Committee of the CPSU.
And if you quote the materials of the Plenum in the newspaper, you might get the impression that all this was done on purpose, with the aim of destroying Soviet agriculture. It should be noted that Khrushchev, after coming to power, held the same Plenum in September 1953. Where everything that was done in agriculture under Stalin was criticized. You read those materials and involuntarily think: as if Stalin did it on purpose... And then Khrushchev, and then Khrushchev was criticized by Brezhnev, and Brezhnev was criticized by Gorbachev...
And what do Kabanov and Klishas offer now? Who will be planted? Tank plant mechanics and combine operators? Factory directors? Owners of agricultural holdings - oligarchs and billionaires? Maybe it will even reach some ministers? To developers of federal programs?
You have to be more careful. And Senator Klishas argues that he is not a representative of the highest authority, but an old man with a pension of 15 thousand rubles, who looks at the store counter, where there is beef at 1 thousand rubles per kilogram, and thinks hard about something of his own...
Maybe about "sabotage"?