Azerbaijani Army for sale16.08.2012 | 16:18
Azeri Defense Minister Safar Abiyev had an unpleasant conversation with the President about the situation in the armed forces of Azerbaijan. Ilham Aliyev has realized that military units are in terrible condition. Having got into the army, soldiers become slaves of their commander. There are entire slave exchanges where senior officers make deals on the sale of slave labor of their subordinates. This causes acts of harassment among servicemen and snitching in the military environment. Military expert Konstantin Sivkov expressed his opinion on the matter in an interview to GTimes.
- Mr Sivkov, as a military expert, how would you assess the overall situation in the army of Azerbaijan? Azerbaijani human rights activists are reporting terrible things about it. Officers are allegedly buying and selling the conscripts as slaves, and the command is selling corpses of the dead or killed for the organs.
- I know well the situation in the Azerbaijani army not only because I was to know it when I served in the Armed Forces General Staff. When I studied in the Academy of General Staff in 1990-92, our Chief of Logistics was General Mamedrafi Mamedov, the Azerbaijani. He was involved in everything, except his responsibilities. For example, he rented out Academy dormitory rooms to completely unknown persons, stealing everything he could steal, and so on. When he was criminally charged, he had left Moscow. In 1992 he became one of the first generals of the independent Azerbaijani army. In September 1993, after the accession of Heydar Aliyev, he became Azerbaijan's Defense Minister. In the Soviet Union Mamedrafi Mamedov was justiciable, but in the Azerbaijani army he is above the law. Minister Mamedov selected the generals and officers like himself. Basing on the situation with the General-plunderer Mammadov, Azerbaijan's army cannot be different.
- Do you mean Safar Abiyev, the current Minister of Defense of Azerbaijan, is a worthy Mamedrafi Mamedov's successor?
- That's right. It cannot be different. Abiyev cannot be an exception to the rule, set by Mamedrafi Mamedov and the entire political elite of Azerbaijan. Exploitation of their own people is a distinctive feature of such elite. No matter, either Abulfaz Elchibey or Heydar Aliyev or Ilham Aliyev - no difference. Ilham Aliyev took power just because he was the son of Heydar Aliyev. Heydar Aliyev became president only because once he was the first secretary of the Communist Party of Azerbaijan and then - chairman of the KGB of the Republic; and in the summer of 1993 he eliminated Elchibey and seized power. They treat the people like the cattle, which can be sold, bought, exploited, robbed ... All of this is called the sovereignty and independence of Azerbaijan. Sovereignty and independence provided the so-called elite the right to mock the people with impunity. Therefore, these gentlemen (I can't call them comrades) will fight for this sovereignty to death.
- And how do the personnel of the Azerbaijani army treat the idea of the sovereignty of the country?
- The Azeri people's opinion differs from the opinion of the elite. March 17, 1991, more than 90 percent of the population of Azerbaijan SSR voted for the integrity of the Soviet Union in the referendum. What is the Azerbaijani army today? There's a great gap between conscripts and officers. Soldiers are from the common people; and officers, especially the supreme command, are from the wealthy circles. Such an army can't fight effectively. Why would a common Azerbaijani soldier give his life for Nagorno-Karabakh? He understands that after receiving Karabakh back, another Haydar-Bey, or Ilham-Bey will rob the people of Karabakh and get millions and billions. Why would a Azerbaijani soldier fight for this people?