The Russian/Chechen trail from Maidan to the ATO


August 20, 2015

Alexey Zotyev

Translated for Fort Russ by J. Arnoldski

The fact that mercenaries are fighting in the ranks of the Ukrainian army and in units under the control of the Ministry of the Interior is something that has been widely reported. Neo-nazis and radicals of all kind, seeking adventure and easy money, flocked to the Ukrainian side once the fratricidal conflict broke out in the country. Some are fighting for money, which was abundantly poured into the UAF budget by the American government, and some are fighting for an idea. But what is the idea in a fratricidal civil war?

Russia did not remain on the sidelines. Almost immediately, as soon as the volunteers from Russia flocked to Novorossia to help local militia, appeared another stream, less bustling, but no less stable. Ranks of radical nationalists and other public, including the representatives of openly criminal organizations, flocked from Russia to Ukraine. At first, they covered their faces and avoided the camera lens, but soon, believing in their “unique mission” began to give interviews in which they shared their revelations about the motives that led them to the side of the Ukrainian security services.

Most of those who agreed to speak on camera said that they went to the ATO to fight against the criminal Russian regime which had unleashed a fratricidal war in Ukraine. Accordingly, none of them mentioned the generous funding of the National Guard battalions joined by the Russian citizens, most of whom are wanted in their country, and that the war in Donbass was started by Poroshenko.

Well alright, let them believe what they want, it’s easier. Easier to kill. But there is one more thing which they preferred not to voice: many of them went to Ukraine long before the civil war broke out in the country. Mercenaries from all over the world played a significant role in the organization of Maidan in 2013 and the subsequent coup. They were the force that spilled the first blood in Kiev. Then they joined the ranks of territorial battalions and continued their “struggle for an idea” already in Donbass, killing civilians and destroying the peaceful cities.

This document, which has not yet been freely released, features a Russian citizen born in the Chechen republic, Ruslan Arsaev, with the call sign “Chechen,” who is a fighter of the “Aidar” battalion (V0624). This document didn’t appear by chance. With fighters of “Aidar,” Arsaev presented themselves as fighters of a counterintelligence battalion. It is indicated that this citizen of Russia did indeed participate in the ATO in contingent V0624, but there is no counterintelligence battalion there. In principle, the presence or absence of counterintelligence in the battalion “Aidar” is of little interest to us. The other information is important: Arsaev, according to this document, actively participated in the confrontations on the Maidan in 2013-2014. He took part not alone, but as part of a group of others who were “visiting Ukrainian patriots” like himself. Now it becomes clear who is the main driving force “of the Ukrainian national revolution.”

Arsaev himself, who not long ago was the pride of the Maidan and a hero of the ATO, was arrested on the territory of the Schastye settlement in Lugansk region on April 20, 2015. The fake counterintelligence agent was charged with the creation of bandit groups with all the implications – robbery, looting, and participation in anti-state protests. This “hero of Ukraine” is now doing his time, but how many more such people are fighting in the ranks of the UAF or the National Guard? Are they fighting and killing for the glory of Ukraine?

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