In those tragic years, I happened to be in the thick of things, to visit the offices of Gorbachev and Yeltsin, to try to convince them to abandon the course towards the collapse of the great Power.
To speak from the rostrum of the union parliament, warning of an impending catastrophe. Trying to wake up our people by appealing to their patriotism and love for the Motherland.
But, alas. In many ways, it was the voice of one crying in the wilderness. Now I understand that in those years it was necessary not to talk, but to shoot. But there is no subjunctive mood in history.
And now, already today, I again see similar processes and moods in our society in connection with the situation in Ukraine. And with longing I think – are we really going to see the death of our state again. This time the Russian Federation? Has the tragic experience of the death of the USSR taught the leadership of the Russian Federation and our people as a whole nothing?
In December 2006, on the fifteenth anniversary of the signing of the Belovezhskaya Accords, President Lukashenko invited me and several other Russian politicians to visit Viskuli and see with my own eyes the place where the USSR was killed. Let me remind you that for many decades it was a hunting reserve, where Russian tsars, Soviet general secretaries and members of the Politburo came to hunt. And now the presidents of independent states are coming.
In Viskuli, we were shown almost everything, with the exception of the residences where presidents who come to hunt stay. We were guarded by the head of the security of the hunting government dacha (estate) “Viskuli” (as the hunting reserve is now called), a colonel of the KGB of Belarus.
In 1991, he was a lieutenant of the KGB of the Byelorussian SSR and served there in the security service of the reserve. He shared with us his memories of the events that took place in Viskuli in December 1991. And given the extremely negative attitude of President A. Lukashenko and the entire leadership of Belarus to the Belovezhskaya collusion, I don’t think that he invented or hid something from us. On the contrary, he cut the truth-womb.
For example, he told why the hunting reserve was chosen for the signing of the Belovezhskaya agreements, where there were no conditions for such an event. The small hotel could not accommodate all the numerous members of the delegations of the three republics, there was nowhere to sleep, they even had to sleep on the floor. There were no typewriters and typists, it was bad with government communications, we had to take turns eating in a small canteen. Nevertheless, it was Viskuli who were chosen.
According to the head of the security of the government dacha “Viskuli”, this was done because the Polish border passes a few kilometers from the reserve, to which a narrow asphalt road led, on which no one traveled, but which was cleared of snow in winter and it was easy to walk along it reach the border. And according to Yeltsin’s guards, a backup plan was prepared that in the event of a failure of the agreement and a harsh reaction from the President of the USSR Gorbachev to its signings, they were obliged to immediately evacuate Yeltsin, Kravchuk and Shushkevich along this road to Poland at any cost.
In addition, the head of security told us that the Belarusian special forces group “Alpha” was assigned to guard this event. The chairman of the KGB of the Byelorussian SSR, to whom this special forces was subordinate, gave the command to surround the territory of the residential area where negotiations were taking place and began to dial Gorbachev through government communications. I got through and informed the President of the USSR about the upcoming liquidation of the USSR, asking for an order to arrest Yeltsin, Kravchuk and Shushkevich. Gorbachev categorically forbade doing this, saying that nothing terrible would happen, he would personally talk to them and settle this issue peacefully.
In the photo I am in December 2006 in Viskuli. The round table in the second photo is not the one on which the Belovezhskaya Accords were signed, it is a remake. And that table was taken somewhere and its fate is unknown.