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Dmitry Alekseevich Milyutin (July 10 (June 28) 1816 (18160628), Moscow - January 25 (February 7) 1912, Simeiz) - Count, Adjutant General, Field Marshal (August 16, 1898), one of the closest, most energetic and most honored employees of Emperor Alexander II.
Dmitry Alekseevich Milyutin was born in 1816 in the family of a nobleman; this family did not possess deep aristocratic roots - the surname received hereditary nobility in 1740. Father D.A. Milyutina was a very educated person, and his mother had ancient noble roots and belonged to the Kiselev family.
In 1845 Milyutin was elected professor at the Military Academy. In 1861, Alexander II appointed Dmitry Alekseevich Milyutin as Minister of War, in this position he remained until 1881.
Dmitry Milyutin began his education at the Noble Pension. He was at Moscow University. Already during his studies at this institution, Dmitry wrote his first works in the field of mathematics and literature. In 1833, Dmitry Milyutin graduated from the Noble Boarding School, receiving a silver medal.
Dmitry Milyutin entered the military academy immediately in the last grade. This was preceded by the guard service in St. Petersburg. Having entered the last class of the Military Academy, Milyutin brilliantly finished his studies in 1836.
Dmitry Alekseevich served in the General Staff. In the period from 1839 to 1845 he was in the troops of the Black Sea region and the Caucasian line, where he directly participated in battles. Milyutin's bravery was noted by his boss P.Kh. Grabe, for whom Dmitry Alekseevich served as an adjutant. The capture of Shamil took place exactly according to the plan developed by Milyutin - he Dmitry Alekseevich was at that time the chief of staff of the Caucasian army.
Milyutin combined military service with persistent study. He thoroughly studied such special sciences as physics, topography, geodesy, etc. Dmitry Alekseevich was also engaged in literary work: for the Military Encyclopedic Dictionary, Milyutin submitted 150 articles written by himself in various disciplines.
Milyutin is a professor at the Military Academy. Dmitry Alekseevich was elected professor in 1845 - at that time he was only 29 years old. Milyutin gave lectures on military geography and statistics. In 1847 Dmitry Alekseevich received a new appointment. He becomes an adjutant to A.I. Chernyshev - Minister of War. A little later, under the new Minister of War (V.A. Dolgorukov), Milyutin became a scientific consultant.
Milyutin is the author of "History of the war between Russia and France during the reign of Paul I in 1799". This book, published in 1852, brought Milyutin wide fame among the educated society of the Russian Empire. Contemporaries appreciated in her the thoroughness of the research, the talent of presentation. They liked the special - patriotic - spirit that pervades the entire work of Dmitry Alekseevich Milyutin. Subsequently, the book was reprinted several times. It has been translated into French and German. Milyutin received the honorary Demidov Prize for his work.
Milyutin understood that a war with Europe was inevitable. Dmitry Alekseevich had a broad outlook, therefore, realizing the inevitability of hostilities with European countries, he spoke about the extremely low readiness of the Russian troops for it. This was in the early 50s of the XVIII. It was still a long way from the shameful end of the Crimean War. But already at this time, Milyutin understood that the personnel of the Russian army were only suitable for participation in parades, but not in hostilities. To change this situation, radical reforms in the military sector were needed.
Milyutin is a member of the commission for the development of military improvements. This commission was headed by General F.V. Rediger; Milyutin joined it in 1856 - immediately after the conclusion of the Paris Treaty. Starting this year, Milyutin began to think closely about possible ways of transforming the army. In March 1856, Dmitry Alekseevich submitted a note to the said commission, in which he outlined the factors that significantly reduce the combat effectiveness of the Russian army, as well as ways to overcome their negative impact. Among other things, Milyutin pointed out the destructive force of serfdom; however, the author was very critical of the entire Russian reality. At the same time, Milyutin referred to the political structure of Western Europe, giving it more preference than the Russian one.
Milyutin is the Minister of War. He received this position in 1861. His goal was the complete reorganization of the armed forces of the Russian Empire. It meant the creation of a mass army, the number of personnel of which was to be the minimum possible in years of peace and maximum in the years of war. This could only be possible with a trained reserve staff.
On the whole, according to DA Milyutin, the army should have the following characteristics - the personnel are fully trained, the army is equipped with modern technology, and the command and control of the army is subject to new rules.
Specific measures included the introduction of military service in 1874. It replaced the recruitment kits that were burdensome for society and extended to absolutely the entire male population, which had reached a certain age - twenty one years (we are talking about representatives of all classes). Among those who have reached the age of 21, a lot was held, according to which a decision was made who exactly will go to serve in the current year.
The undoubted advantage of the ongoing reform was the reduction in service life. If before the adoption of the decree on universal military service the conscripts had to serve for tens of years, now the general term of service was clearly established. He was fifteen years old, of which six years were devoted to active service and nine years to serve in the reserve.
Milyutin emphasized the need for professional training of officers. To achieve this goal, according to the Minister of War, training was also provided for the rank and file - in 1875, the need for literacy of ordinary soldiers was recognized. Specially created educational institutions taught them to read and write.
Milyutin advocated the development of the military industry. With his labors, a new American rifle was adopted, however, in many respects it was improved by Russian scientists. During the years when Milyutin was Minister of War, the production of steel cannons began and expanded.
Milyutin is an important statesman. Dmitry Alekseevich, in addition to military issues, pondered over many others, nevertheless, of national importance. For example, he was very categorical about serfdom, and indeed to any manifestation of the suppression of one estate by another.
Conducted by D.A. Milyutin tested the reforms in practice. This test was the Russian-Turkish war of 1877-1878; Milyutin's transformations withstood it with dignity. The Russian army was mobilized in just four weeks; and on the 42nd day, the personnel were already ready to deploy the offensive. Until the end of 1877, Dmitry Alekseevich was on the front of hostilities, and although Milyutin did not take direct part in them, he closely followed the command of the troops.
For example, after the failed second attempt to capture Plevna, the Minister of War explained to the command that it was necessary to move from the assault to the siege of the fortress. This was done, but not immediately after the recommendation, but after another attempt to storm Plevna - unsuccessful ...
D.A. Some time after the end of the war, Milyutin said without any pride that all his enemies were forced to admit the increased combat readiness of the Russian army, its excellent training and equipment. By the way, foreign military observers also did not deny the merits of the Russian minister.
Dmitry Alekseevich was also appreciated by the emperor himself - immediately after the conclusion of the peace treaty, Alexander II awarded Milyutin the Order of St. George, 2nd degree. The Minister of War was also elevated to the rank of count.
Milyutin tried to prevent a new military conflict in Europe. For example, after the Berlin Congress of 1878, which nullified many points of the San Stefano Treaty, which was beneficial to the Russian Empire, Milyutin was still against new military actions. The Minister of War understood that a new war would bring more losses to the people than the negative aspects of the Berlin Congress.
Milyutin spent the last thirty years of his life at his own estate. In 1881, at the age of 65, Dmitry Alekseevich resigned. He spends the rest of his life modestly living on his estate in the Crimea. During these years he devoted a lot of time to literary work - working on "Education".