A soldier between society and army

In order to speak about an infrastructure of any system, first of all it is necessary to look over the whole system. As it is stated by the specialists responsible for the sphere the military-medical service of RA Armed Forces has firm bases. Evidently, the development of that sphere cannot be separated from the whole. But is it only the task of defense system, or of the public attention, as well? In order to find it out, first of all, we should understand how the army and the society are related. We are talking to the Head of the Department of Information and Public Relations of RA Ministry of Defense Vardan Avetisyan.
-How do you imagine the relation between the army and the society, besides soldier-parent relations?
_Numerous activities have been planned and organized in RA Armed Forces during years which brought several strata of society closer to the army. Currently, RA Ministry of Defense cooperates with about 130 non-governmental and youth organizations. Every year in the administrative complex of RA Ministry of Defense meetings with representatives of the spheres of science and culture, students, youths who have arrived from Diaspora, several non-governmental organizations, as well as representatives of media are held. Visits to units of armed forces by the representatives of non-governmental organizations cooperating with the Ministry of Defense, as well as students and schoolchildren are regularly organized, as well. Let me mention, that all the units of RA armed forces, as well as leadership of Ministry of Defense and Armed Forces are attached to educational facilities, regular meetings with schoolchildren and students are being held. After all, the relation between the army and society is provided by the cooperation with mass media, coverage of activities and events implemented in the armed forces, journalists’ visit to military units. Parents are proud of any publication about soldiers, which contributes to enhancing the relationship between the army and society.
_Trust towards army is very important both for the army and the society. What measures are taken to gain that trust?
-I don’t think, in our country there is anybody who does not trust the army. Indeed, there may be some people who don’t trust any structure or official for some reasons but there cannot be anybody who does not trust the Armenian soldier. The Armenian soldier is the bright future of our country. The Armenian soldier gains the trust of society every second, every minute protecting the peacetime and providing the security of the borders of our country.

_ Is it possible to make the parent send his son to the army with patriotic slogans? Don’t we need more fundamental work in that direction? What kind of work is being implemented?
_Not, of course, these kinds of slogans are more applicable at wartime situations. Our works are directed to enrooting patriotism and sense of having a homeland in our youths, organization of cognitive tours and meetings, as well as struggle against bad street manners.
_Which issues related to the army concern people more? How are they solved?
_Unfortunately, in recent years the most of the distressing issues have been related to the soldiers’ health which, as a rule, appear in the process of recruitment. I don’t mean that the boys who were born after war suffer from more illnesses. However, there are some health problems. Some of the problems are solved just after the newly-recruited soldier has started military service. Commanders having the personal documents of the newly-recruited soldiers speak to them and consult the soldiers’ health problems with their parents. It is a very efficient method as many boys don’t tell about their health problems considering them as trivial. Combining the talk with the parent and the medical conclusion commanders imagine more clearly how they are going to work with the soldiers. This is an individual and consistent approach to each soldier.
_Do the issues become a base for reforms? Will you bring any example?
_The base of the ongoing reforms of RA armed forces is the assessment of our own problems, revealing the reasons causing them, as well as eliminating them. The process of reforms started some years ago. Enormous work has been carried out, yet we have a lot of things to do.
_How will you assess the rating of the army by summing up the public attitude?
_Social survey is regularly carried out in order to find out the public attitude towards the armed forces. We are constantly monitoring the media, observing public discussions, as well as we reveal the public assessment to the army at personal meetings. And the fact that RA Armed forces are currently considered the most stable, most organized and operating structure is, in fact, the highest assessment.
_What is the reason of the firm base of our military-medical service?
_Our military medicine was originated on the battlefront. If at peaceful conditions doctors’ most complicated activities are perceived in an ordinary way, on the battle field each surgical interference performed by the doctor should be defined as divine humanity and miracle. During the years of fighting the doctors and nurses volunteered, as well. They changed the doctor’s white coat into a military uniform; sometimes they took a weapon instead of a lancet. Passing through the war, through the hard way of formation, enriching and improving the skills and abilities, as well as obtaining modern medical equipment and improving housing conditions our medical servants implement their duties with honor.
One of the most important tasks of our medical servants is not only to treat, recover and return the soldier to the army, but also not to allow the soldier with serious health problems to be recruited. It is closely related with the strengthening of the fighting capacity and its further improvement. In this regard, it is not accidental that those problems are constantly in the centre of the attention of the leadership of the Ministry of Defense. At present, the military doctor is not only a qualified specialist but also a soldier fighting for health and peace.