A conscript killed on the Cosmodrome
Anatoly Serdyukov, Minister of Defence of Russia promised to punish harshly generals and officers of the Plesetsk Cosmodrome after in a military hospital a conscript Sergei Sinkonen beaten by his commanders had died. The Minister of Defence is going to crack down on generals and officers guilty of negligence, right up to their discharge.
Two conscripts, Sinkonen and Dzgoev were beaten two weeks ago. One of praporshiks (warrant officers in the Russian army - ed.) in the evening of 14 August arranged in a bath-house on the territory of the unit a party to celebrate his marriage. After that two officers Victor Bal and Vadim Kalinin being heavily drunk went to their quarters and on the way saw the conscripts. The officers suspected the soldiers of absence without leave and stopped them. In the result the officers knocked the soldiers off his feet and began beating them, mainly on heads, with their feet and by buckle of their belts. Then the unconscious conscripts were thrown into a kennel with guard dogs.
In the morning a soldier who went to feed dogs found them. He reported the commander of the unit on the incident. The victims were got to the hospital where doctors made to Sinkonen a trepanation of the skull.
'Unfortunately Sinkonen's condition is without hope – he is being kept alive by artificial respiration but he is brain dead now. He is being kept alive by the doctors,' an officer, who asked not to be named, said. Dzgoev was injured relatively easily and he was discharge from hospital on August 20.
At that time General Anatoly Bashlakov, the head of the Plesetsk Cosmodrome was on leave, and he did not interrupt his vacation because of the incident. And recently it found out that he had bettered himself: the president appointed him on the post of the head of the Department of the Education of the Ministry of Defence.
Colonel General Vladimir Popovkin, Commander of the RF Space Force, said the incident to be a single instance. “It is not a mistake of the educational system. Simply that officer... there were serious problems with his upbringing when he was a child. His father occupied a top position in the Ministry of Defence, so, he always considered himself not to be realized. Unfortunately being drunk he decided to realixe himself in such a way. I have nothing to say, you see, nothing besides Russian national words”, cites Radio Free.
In the last week several commissions, a group of representatives of the Karelia Republic, where Sinkonen is from, Deputy Minister of Defence Nikolai Pankov visited the Plesetsk Cosmodrome. The prosecution initiated proceedings on Art. 286 pt. 3 “A” of the Criminal Code (performance of official power with the help of violence) against captain Bal and praporshik Kalinin. This article provides from 3 up to 10-year imprisonment. At the moment the praporshik is arrested; captain Bal was sent for a psychiatric examination.
To all appearance this case is to become the next loud story with bullying in Russia's military. Usually cases of bullying and abuse in the army are stirred up by organisations of Soldiers’ Mothers and senior officials of the Ministry of Defence prefer not to comment it or deny everything and accuse human rights activist of blowing up an “anty-army hysteria”. That was during the case of Roman Rudakov who has been severely beaten in his unit and who is still staying in the hospital. That was with the unit №3727 in St. Petersburg where conscripts were forced to practice prostitution.
Now, It seems, the situation is another. August 29 the Minister of Defence Anatoly Serdyukov signed an order on displacement and dismissal from the RF Armed Forces of Major-General Konstantin Chmarov, acted as the chief of the Plesetsk Cosmodrome.
The most loud case of the resent times became the case of Andrei Sychev. After a senior soldier had beaten the conscript, he left legs and genitals. This case was widely covered in mass-media, the society began discussing problems of the Russian army and necessary changes of the system. Sergei Ivanov, being a Minister of Defence at that time, gave rather clumsy explanation in the State Duma. Some analytics reckoned that somebody tried to use this case to discredit Ivanov being a possible Putin’s successor in 2008. The case of Sychev helped to discover several more cases of violent bullying in the army.