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Dead Navy

Anatoly Baranov 04.05.2006

The second session of the Russian-Ukrainian Subcommittee on the question of functioning of the Black Sea Navy of the Russian Federationand its stay in the territory of the Ukrainewill take place on the 4th of May in Moscow. At the forthcoming Subcommittee session the results of meetings in working groups will be considered and the further schedule of negotiating process will be planned.

At the first session of Subcommittee on the 14th of February in Kievthe complex of questions stated in the agenda of negotiations on problematics of the Black Sea Navy was discussed and the decision to create 5 profile working groups for the profound analysis of a state of affairs on separate directions was made.

In March-April the meetings of all groups created took place: on the 14th – 15th of March on the questions of navigation and hydrography (in Kiev), on the 20th – 22nd of March - on ecology (in Sevastopol), on the 22nd – 23rd of March - on military-political questions (in Moscow), on the 30th – 31st of March - on legal issues (in Kiev), on the 12th of April - on inventory of the ground areas and the objects of the real estate which are being rent by the Black Sea Navy (in Kiev).

Now it is necessary to understand the matter of discussion for the Russian and Ukrainian politicians when they are speaking about Black Sea Navy.

Yesterday new decoding of an abbreviation "ЧФ" (Black Sea Navy in Russian) as "чи флот, чи не флот" (“if it’s fleet or not”) appeared. The service in Black Sea Navy during the time of the Soviet Unionwas more a privilege than real naval career. The main Navy of the country was Northern Navy but, certainly, service in Polar region didn’t belong to a category of resort ones.

The Black Sea Navy was, certainly, more modest than in both Northern and Pacific. There were here neither nuclear underwater cruisers nor the aircraft carriers. Nevertheless there should be necessarily in the structure of the navy not less than 3 ships of 1-st rank and not less than this amount the number of the ships of the 2-nd rank. The number of submarines though diesel ones was also estimated in tens.

After the time when in the former Soviet Union such disasters as freedom and democracy happened and somewhere not so far “nezalezhnost” took place, the Black Sea Navy seemed to melt away.

The Ukrainian Navy according to the Russian measures is not a navy at all. There is no ship of the 1-st rank and only one sample of the 2-nd - "Hetman Sagajdachny". All the rest - boats, the landing ships do not represent any impact force. There is one more submarine which has been rusting for many years in dry dock – the fact does not prevent from having three admiral posts in the Ukrainian management of submarine force.

This is not all – the only Ukrainian submarine which periscope does not rise, as many generations of mariners standing at the banner of non-floating vessel “drained the dragons” at the place of periscope location, is under repair. Where does the money come from? There is a problem – the submarine is actually sold out and its reconstruction is done not for the Ukrainian submariners.

On such background the Russian Black Sea Navy looks like a spawn of military force. All 3 necessary ships of 1-st rank are present in it: "Moscow" (former "Slava"), "Ochakov" and "Kerch". There are also ships of the 2nd rank being in quite good condition: "Smetlivy" and "Provorny"...

For many years "Оchakov" has been standing on basic repair and by all appearances won’t leave a dock at all. It doesn’t have its company anyway – officers are on duty only on papers, while in reality in other places.

"Kerch" is on the move, recently new station has been established there - hindus have refused to accept the system made for them and at once it has fitted us. Hardly impossible to recollect those times when the military technique was delivered abroad only when there were already more perfect analogues in the army. Now we deliver abroad the newest and modern that we are still capable to produce and leave to ourselves all that is "second hand".

Recently they had been changing shafting on “Smetlivy”, for the change two ...right ones were sent. Is it possible that such things could happen during the time of the Soviet Union? It’s simply shameful …

Submarine might of the Black Sea Navy is presented by ... two submarines. One of which is in dry dock and can be dived only one time – one and for ever. Aswim is only B-871 "Alrosa" – please, don’t be surprised, it is the sponsor's help to the navy from oligarches. The same way the army was being equipped in Chinaat Gomindan time thanks to donations from big business. We know from history what the army of imperial Japanmade with it.

By the way, recently, the Chinese ship of the first rank had come to Sevastopol. Our mariners went to look at it and their mood after the survey was very nasty. The Chinese ship was new, spick-and-span, equipped according to the last word of techniques. While our ships are sometimes not complete since the times when everything that is possible was dragged from them to bring for scrap metal thus to earn to live.

Well, there are still, certainly, two modern rocket cruisers "Bora" type, there are auxiliary ships but all these in any way cannot stand possible aggression of NATO in this region. All our floating structure will be at the bottom already in the first day of serious military operations.

You can say that NATO is not going to strike us or even more so the Ukraine

You can go to the Lasly coffee house, look at posters of "Grey Wolves" on walls and look in the eyes of those people who pour to you a fragrant drink "Turkish like". After the next division of the navy it will again thaw on uncertain quantity of objects, ships and equipments.

During the first division there was a story told that the brigade of fleet marine force which was showed out to Novorossijsk after its arrival was fewer in number in 50 tanks. They were not found at all. Nobody was punished. Probably the plot is not quite exact in details but the tendency is like one.

By the time the quays have been already distributed, that piece of a quay wall which has been given to the Ukraine "had gone" at once for the needs of terminal recently constructed in the Sevastopol bay for loading of grain, that is it has ceased to be military. Earlier an air station in Belbek had become civil, superconfidential Balaklavskaya Bay - unique base of submarine navy - had turned into elite yachts-club. That is to say - what is the purpose of the base, if only one submarine is aswim?

The old truth about people who do not wish to feed their own army and will feed therefore the foreign one is justifying itself with tremendous demonstrativeness. One shouldn’t forget that the Crimeaand the Ukrainein general up to the Poltavais a historical Turkey. By the way, the number of Turkish acres is fewer in Russia- only a slice of coast from Novorossijsk up to Anapa and Azov in a mouth of the river Don. So it turned out that Rumyantsev, Ushakov, Suvorov, Potyomkin made efforts basically for the Ukraineand a little bit for Moldova.

Though Russiahas more ships than the Ukraine.

If at the end the Russian Navy will have to leave from the Sevastopolbase then all huge Black Seacoast of the Ukrainewill be protected by one ship of the 2-nd rank "Hetman Sagajdachny", two landing ships and some boats, generally admiral.

It’s hardly possible that the condition of the Ukrainian Army is principally different from its mighty Navy. At least squadron of “the best from the best” appointed to Iraqwas recognized as unfit for leading of active offensive military actions. Onlytoconvoyandguard.

At such state of things there will be no war. Turkeywill just in suitable moment bring troops into the country without any resistance. We can recollect occupation of Polandwhich is so near to the Ukrainewhich was forced by wehrmacht in a month whereas the army of Pilsudsky was more fitted for fight, had fighting experience and was not badly equipped by the time. Neverthelessonlyamonth… 

Such state of things, possibly, will play on hands of “orange” leadership: former Turkish territories are exactly those regions where Juschenko and Timoshenko have minimum of support.


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