Maslenitsa week followed one more popular holiday in Belarus, which is Defender of the Fatherland Day, February 23rd. This day was filled not only with congratulations and gifts to men, but also with thoughts about Belarusian army. Evgeny Pustovoi tells us about the army and soldiers’ life during the service.
The soldier Ilya Konopelko has a leave, but he doesn’t relax. He repairs a wiring at granny’s and helps his parents with home improvements.
Olga Konopelko, soldier’s mother:
Thanks to the army, our son does almost all the household chores, we don’t even iron.
A year in the army has changed the guy into a man, a late riser into an early riser.
I want him to relax a bit. But he wakes up at 7 a.m. and asks for some work.
Ilya Konopelko, a soldier of an independent guards mechanised brigade No 120:
I get a good military education, munitions, equipment. We train at playwars and have good results.
But the army teaches the art of singing as well. A lot of Belarusian singers did military service.
It is thought that the school of courage makes real men and real colonels. Anatoly Yarmolenko went through the army and finally reached a stage. Not a concert, especially military one, leaves without Anatoly Yarmolenko.
Anatoly Yarmolenko, People’s Artist of Belarus:
We were so young and didn’t understand this. But all the artists told us that we have to make up before we take the stage.
Generally speaking, every man should get through the army, I think.
The artist has always had good people around. However, military life was far from perfect.
I sang on evenings and then I was sent on duty detail.
Anatoly is a grandfather and trains his grandson for the army.
All men in our family are ready to defend the native land.
The Belarusian army has great mental and intellectual strength.
Maxim Yatsko, deputy commander of rocket artillery battery on arming preparation:
This vehicle is automatized. Target circular deflection is 30 meters.
Maxim Yatsko is one of the first to hit all the targets. Belarusian Polonaise is a unique missile; it exists in Belarus only.
Mikhail Krivoshey, independent artillery battalion No 77 officer:
We got experience from foreign armies in making weapons of such kind.
Polonaise hits eight different targets by one shot within a radius of 200 km. By the way, Belarusian advanced weapons are presented in Arab Emirates. Belarus adheres to a defensive doctrine, including territorial defense.
Maxim Zagortsev, Smolevichi district executive committee chairman:
The main principle of the territorial defense is to defend native land.
Military exercises took place in Smolevichi district. Machine guns, field camp changed pens and offices.
No one has lost his military shills. Warrior spirit in a man always works.
Belarusian army has changed since the 1980s . The musician and athlete Albert Skorokhod visited a reconnaissance company in the army on Defender of the Fatherland Day. He is a special forces operative.
I had only one machine gun. But today I do not know where to look first. So many weapons.
Almost everything is improving. Even the assembly technology of the AKM submachine gun.
We could only dream of having exercise equipment in a gym but now it’s a reality.
The army has changed for the better in the sovereign Belarus and victory spirit has remained in soldiers’ hearts.