Spetsnaz Demonstration in Bosnia

Discussion in 'Multinational HQ' started by Trip_Wire, Feb 6, 2007.

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  1. Trip_Wire

    Trip_Wire RIP

    Sergy: How about these crazy soldiers!

    Link to article.:


    Link to video.:


    The Russian military contingent in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) has a rather rich seven-year history. Their story began in 1996, Jan. 5, when the 1st Russian Separate Airborne Brigade, 1,500 soldiers strong, deployed in BiH. In the year 2000, the national flag replaced the banner of the unit. That's why every Russian soldier here assumes the responsibilities of a deserved representative of his country. It was the case on Feb. 23, the Day of the Motherland’s Defenders.

    Ugljevik - Originally, Russian forces were located in five camps (Ugljevik, Priboj, Simin Han, Vukocavci and Spasoevici). One year later, the area of responsibility was given to the command of infantry troops from Saint Petersburg's military region in Russia. Nowadays, the Russian Military Contingent (RMC) is comprised of 350 individuals. The Headquarters are currently stationed in camp Ugljevik. A few observers are also located in Simin Han. The Area of Responsibility of the Russians includes mainly the central and northeastern part of Republika Srpska (RS), with some parts of the Federation. The total area is 1,750 sq. kilometres. The slogan of the RMC is 'Honor for oneself, Glory for our Motherland'.

    An original tradition
    During the accomplishment of their mission, several Russian soldiers died for peace and for the Motherland. They stay in the hearts of their compatriots, friends and local citizens. All of those soldiers have been posthumously awarded the Medal of Honour.
    The Russian army celebrates the Day of Motherland Defender on Feb. 23. This is the date of the foundation of the Soviet Army and the day of victory over the German troops in the battles of Pskov and Narva in 1942.
    The celebration of this date is dear to every soldier. Cadet Andrei Lubimov underlined: "I'm proud to be of service in the Russian Armed Forces. I'm proud to be a defender and to represent interests of my country for the peacekeeping mission in BiH." Sgt. Artem Bezborodov agrees: "For me, the Day of Defender is my professional holiday, the day when I feel a strong unity with my nation, my unit, my friends. I'm really proud to be here and to serve my Homeland."
    The celebration began with the guard of honor carrying the national flag of the Russian Federation. After the national anthem and in reply to the speech of Col. Sergey Shakurin, RMC commander, all the lined-up staff thrice cried out "Hooray!" This exclamation made all the guests attending the ceremony feel the solemnity of this celebration. There were representatives from multinational contingents of SFOR, International Organisations and members of the Armed Forces in BiH.

    The show
    The traditional interest of the spectators then focused on the show of the reconnaissance platoon, commanded by 1st Lt. Alexey Smelov. The aim of this demonstration was to show that highly trained military specialists could play a great role in combat. "Russian contingent in BiH is hardly over three hundred, that is less by ten of Americans and half the quantity of Poles. Nevertheless, every Russian soldier can demonstrate wonders of strength, courage, decisiveness and self-sacrifice," emphasised Col. Yury Yurov.
    The Reconnaissance platoon, led by 1st Sgt. Yury Derbenev, conducted an ostensible capture of a truck, so that further anti-terrorist operation could be executed. The most effective method of the capture is the attack.
    It happened in a flash: the sentry was disarmed, Pvt. Stanislav Ryabinin took away the barrier and with its help reached the roof, where he destroyed the weapon emplacement.
    While the firing continued, Capt. Denis Denisov and Derbenev climbed down along the wall of the three-storied building: another weapon emplacement departed its life.
    First Sgt. Talai Abadanov, Sgt. Arthur Agriyanc and Sgt. Bladimir Volnukhin assaulted the terrorists, and at the very same moment the cover group destroyed the Armoured Personel Carrier vehicle. Their bravery is the result of several years of intense, complicated training and not to be taken lightly.

    The team
    For instance, Abadanov has been fighting for almost ten years, in Tadzhikistan and Abkhazia among others. He said: "I'm the third in my family, who was awarded with 'the Medal of Honour'. The first one belonged to my grandfather, who got it during the Great Patriotic war [Russian appellation for WW II]; the second belonged to my father - for participating in the Afghanistan war. I received the third in the Army sniper's competition in 2001. Now I'm eager to teach shooting. Actually, my lessons have already saved many soldiers' lives."
    Abadanov has also been rewarded with 'the medal of Suvorov' and 'the medal of Service for Motherland'. First Sgt. Denis Krilov has been rewarded with the same medal.
    Pvt. Vitaly Dolgopolov, from the Special Forces, who has passed the war from Buinaks to Itum-Kale in Chechnya, is also rewarded with 'the Order for Courage'. Ryabinin was at the same place and was awarded with 'the medal of Zhukov'.
    'The Medal of Suvorov' was awarded to Sgt Alexander Naumenko. Just like his comrade Adrei Gundorin, he has served in the intelligence units of the Special Forces in Transcaucasia.
    Both Derbenev and Volnukhin served in the airborne troops for more than one year. Three other RMC soldiers served in Special Forces and Airborne - Sgt Alexander Kuzmin, Agriyanc and Pvt. Sergey Zadunaysky.

    With and without weapons
    After the actions of the whole unit, the soldiers showed their individual skills in the fight with weapons and without. Capt. Yusi Viinemyaki, from the Finnish CIMIC (Civil-Military Co-operation), and Col. Nedad Garich, commander of the 308th Infantry Brigade of the RS Army, were the first ones to burst into applause after the wonderful fight of Abadanov with an invisible opponent.
    Admiring Americans seemed to be very much impressed when Agriyanc, a fellow from St.Petersburg who was born in the former Republic of Uzbekistan, made the split after the jump, leaning on the ground just with the help of two bayonets' tips.
    Then followed the digging tools, pole, num-chucks, man to man fighting and two versus five. The crowd stood motionless, listening to the gun shoots. One versus three! Five seconds later Dolgopolov bent, as he won.
    The crowd shouted for the first time when the scene 'Num-chucks versus Kalashnikov Machine-gun' was held. The graceful attack of the soldier has been broken with the sudden burst of fire…blank. Of course!
    "No one but Us" - the Airborne motto has carefully been kept in RMC. The demonstration of the strength of the mind of Russian soldiers, always ready to perform the mission, rounded up the show. Burning bricks, tiles, bottles and planks were smashed by strong punches.
    The strongest head of RMC' was Kuzmin, who broke eight tiles at a time; thereby he has improved the last year's record of six tiles. A pack of tiles was broken on Kuzmin's and Gundorin's heads - and after that they did feel all right. Sgt. Denis Krilov laid down on broken bottles and his comrades throws bayonets into his stomach. When he stood up, everybody could see: there were no scratches on his back.
    The next morning, the front page of 'Stars and Stripes' showed a picture: the bottle, filled with water, is smashed to pieces by a strong kick of Abadanov. In the adjacent column the photo of Mike Tyson appeared; they have much in common indeed.
    Russians did not want to scare anyone by demonstrating their abilities. They just did their best to show what a Russian soldier can do. A professional one, the one, which is the spirit of the Army.
  2. Not particularly impressed - don't doubt they're fit, agile and very robust, but it's really little more than a bog standard martial arts demo the like of which I've seen in many a county show.

    It's easy to look hard and warry on a rehearsed demo under controlled/ pre-planned conditions: used to put on a pretty impressive display of infantry platoon attack as a 16 year old cadet on school CCF inspections. God, we were scary, but don't doubt that we'd have lasted about 30 seconds if doing it for real in the face of any half competent opposition!

    Can't help but reflect that these "super soldiers" have proved less than competent when "rescuing" hostages, notably in the Moscow Theatre siege, Beslan School etc. Sure, they killed the terrorists readily enough, but in the Moscow case failed to plan/ prepare for basic medical care of gassed hostages (not hard and very foreseeable); at Beslan, they failed to take control of the area (pretty fundamental in such situations, so I'm told) resulting in chaos and slaughter initiated by the local population.

    Perhaps if they spent less time hitting themselves over the head with bricks...!? Could do without the macho music too. And WTF was that tosser doing firing his weapon in the air whilst climbing over the truck?!
  3. The Russkies I have been around - BiH & Kosova were fine, excellent fellows the only complaint I had is the dreadful standard of Russian rations. The show is exactly the thing that Balkan types enjoy so why not?
  4. Because it glamorises a certain macho mind set that has caused more than a few problems in those parts? Yeah, I know, I'm a wanky teacher type...

  5. :wink:
  6. But an honest w*n!er!
  7. Seen the same and much, much worse done in the NAAFI by fatter and p1ssed squaddies.

    Good public show but nothing clever
  8. that was more like watching a travelling circus act than a military unit. Not that I`d tell them to their faces of course
  9. Trip_Wire:

    These are NOT “spetsnaz”.
    1st Separate Airborne Brigade was formed in early 1996 (if my memory serves me correct). It was comprised of troops from 98th and 76th Airborne Divisions. Before that, peacekeepers were formed in 629th Motorized Infantry Batallion and were located near Sarajevo.

    No members of any Spetsnaz GRU Brigades, or FSB "A" or "V" units were ever attached to IFOR/SFOR units.
    However, troops from 45th Separate Recon Regiment of VDV (special operations capable) were attached in very limited numbers mostly as support roles (drivers and mechanics).
    In 1998 a detachment of the 22nd Separate Airborne Regiment was deployed as well. I don’t know how long they stayed there. Russian peacekeeping forces were comprised of VDV troops from 78th, and 98th Airborne Divisions, I think one more Airborne Division also had its troops attached to SFOR units, but I don’t remember which one exactly.

    Just because they are wearing bandanas, tel’niks, and breaking bricks it doesn’t make them Spetsnaz GRU of General Staff. You would be surprised to see an actual Spetsnaz GRU soldier, many of whom are like “grey man” without this whole Rambo stuff.

    Have a good day.
  10. Trip_Wire

    Trip_Wire RIP


    Thanks for the update.

    I was aware of what you are saying; however, the article and video was titled that way and I saw no need, to change it. It would just tend to confuse people and I'd have to go into a long written diatribe explaining it. The Video to me, was more 'humorous' then serious. As some one here pointed out, such tactics as shown, would result in serious problems for the unit, if confronted by professionals.

    The fact is that the media of the world and many people, do tend to call all Russian specialized units 'Spetsnaz.' The fact that there are so many various types of 'Spetsnaz' units and/or organizations, doesn't help. (To include private security companies with so called 'ex-Spetsnaz' employees.)

    Actually, I'm award that American Special Forces from the 1st SFG(A) have trained together with a Spetsnaz unit in Russia. Other American SF units may well have as well.
  11. I liked the Russians, was able to practice the language with them and they were friendly enough guys. But God help you if you didn't hide your valuable gear or left it unsecured. The younger ones were notorious for stealing any equipment not tied down or were willing to sell you just about all of their military issue for the right price.
  12. Trip_Wire

    Trip_Wire RIP


    On a recent visit to Vladivostok, I noted many Russian military people trying to sell and/or barter uniform items on the street, around the place we docked.


  13. So I take it you have not yet served alongside British Troops yet Virgil?

    :lol: :wink:
  14. Indeed Sova-4 very much like our own specials, as I said this display was mainly for Balkan farmers whose main military experience is watching drunk militia killing women and kids.

    I do seem to recall some very competent professional looking Russian 'grey men' who were part of Bill Clintons protection entourage on his visit to Bosnia.

    Rumour at the time was that the US Secret Service trusted EU & RU Special forces more than many US Troops on the ground to protect the President.