A little more than a month passed between the beginning of open mobilization in Russia on September 21 and the first mass refusals of those drafted into the army to go into battle. There are already a ton of mass expressions of dissatisfaction among soldiers with the quality of provision, training and equipment, however in this review we will not talk about simple criticism of superiors, but only about cases of refusal to fight at all, covered in more detail on our own resource.
It is worth noting that there are no calls to withdraw troops from Ukraine at all, or at least to cancel mobilization among the strikers, not to mention attempts to stand up for themselves with weapons in their hands. They protest only for themselves or their relatives. At the same time, it must be borne in mind that even the total number of those mobilized in one or another unit may not exceed the number of all kinds of overseers and managers, not to mention the Russian Guard or private irregular mercenaries who are able to come to those to help. Not to mention the fact that the most active and oppositional public ignores the mobilization in principle.
So, at the Soloti training ground in the Belgorod region of Russia, near the border with Ukraine, as we reported earlier, more than a hundred mobilized refused to go to the frontline near Liman. As of October 17, about 30 protesters remained, the rest were intimidated and forced to agree. But, as it became known on October 23, these remaining ones were returned back to the Bryansk region, from where they were called!
However, most of such stories come from the vicinity of Svatovo on the border of the Luhansk and Kharkov regions, where a fierce positional meat grinder is going on. The Kremlin military correspondent Alexander Kharchenko reported on October 27 that in these places one company did not want to return to the battlefield and the general persuaded her to do so for an hour.
Since November 5, the wives and mothers of the mobilized began to gather for rallies, besiege military units and appeal to the authorities with requests to return their men from the front. More than two dozen women three days later arrived in the town of Valuiki (on the border of the Belgorod region with Kharkov and Lugansk ones), from where the soldiers were sent to the front. On November 11, they ended up in Starobelsk, where the military commandant’s office is located and where about 30 soldiers retreated from the line of fire near Svatovo: “Our guys are so gray-haired, so old, their eyes are empty, they don’t trust anyone. They look at us, they are waiting for help, and we can’t help in any way…” The status of those who left the shelling is incomprehensible: the commanders promised not to bring charges of desertion, but some kind of investigation is underway. In any case, they promised to return the soldiers at least to a relatively safe place if not home. Another group of those who retreated, about 150-200 people, afraid to go towards Starobelsk and accusations of desertion, at that time hid in abandoned houses of the surrounding villages.
In the last days of October, the mobilized of the 35th Guards Motorized Rifle Brigade (military unit 41659, Aleysk, the Altai Krai) refused to return to the front after retreating near the village of Nevskoye. About 60 conscripts from the 91st as part of a company retreated to Svatovo, the rest remained on the front line. After that, for 8 days, “various ranks – from majors to generals – came to those who refused to return and were intimidated by the fact that we have only one choice – to go to the front line, because there is no time to send you to the prosecutor’s office.” At the time of the story on November 12, the mobilized were in the rear on the Lugansk region and demanded a meeting with the military prosecutor. Yesterday morning, the Ukrainian governor of Luhansk said that Russian paratroopers had been transferred to this region from the Kherson direction. From his words, they are as prepared as possible and can fight normally, but these are already the last professional troops remaining at the disposal of invaders.
At the same time, the ASTRA Telegram channel found out at least 7 underground places for detention of at least 70 mobilized Russians refusing to participate in hostilities, and these are only those whose names they know. As of November 16, only one of these prisons – the large basement of the House of Culture in the village of Zaytsevo in the north of the Luhansk region near the border with Russia – has grown to about 300 inmates due to the constant arrival of new ones. Another basement, in Perevalsk, where about 20 refusers were kept, was closed after the resonance, and the prisoners were transferred to another location. Those who are interested can read the full text in Russian.
Released a week ago from one of the basements refuser Mikhail N. (mobilized from the Primorsky Krai) said them in an interview that there were about 25-26 people in two rooms. “Now a friend of mine called me and said that when they took me away, they brought two more Yakuts. Now there are about 28 of them there.” Together with another prisoner, he was taken out of there in for health reasons, taken to the territory of the RF, dropped off the bus and “that’s it, then you go to the hospital with your own feet” – they were released on all four sides. “Of those with whom I was there initially, no one was beaten, neither was I. But the boys were different, they seemed to have been brought from the Perevalsk basement to us, they said that one by one they were brought into the basement and they shot at the wall from a machine gun over their heads. And it seems like PMC employees did it. But this is not exactly clear from the conversations. Now I want to help in every possible way to get the boys out of there. I would like to know the names of these freaks, who told us that we are nobody. We don’t know any of their data at all, they weren’t presented” Mikhail wants to get his comrades released from the basement, who continue to be held, and intends to seek criminal liability for everyone who illegally placed mobilized people in the basement without court decisions or notices of detention.
A month ago, on October 17, the military commandant of Ulan-Ude (Republic of Buryatia) opened the first criminal case in Russia on the unauthorized abandontment of a unit by the mobilized, under Part 3.1 of Art. 337 of the RF Criminal Code. This provision was included there with the military amendments from 24.09.2022. The accused is a resident of Yakutia, called up for mobilization and arbitrarily left the military unit in Buryatia for up to one month, where he was taken from the military commissariat. The accused told the commander: “I will not go to any Ukraine, I will not shoot at any Ukrainians.” He said that after it he was threatened with reprisals and criminal liability. Then, he escaped from the barrack through a hole in the fence.
On the night of October 17, an unknown person attacked the military commissariat in the village of Mukhorshibir, the Republic of Buryatia. The visitor threw a Molotov cocktail on the roof, but the fire covered only 2 square meters of the facade, and did not penetrate inside. The fire was noticed by a security guard who began to extinguish it. Not exactly a successful attempt, but a good approach, since a fire can cause a lot of damage (unlike attacking the front door).
On November 10, the FSB claimed the prevention of a terrorist attack against the enlistment office of the Kirovsky district in Yekaterinburg. Together with military counterintelligence, they detained a 47-year-old activist Mikhail Nikitin, allegedly finding five improvised incendiary devices during a search. On the footage of his detention, punishers show bottles of gasoline and solvent found on him. From the FSB words, he is a supporter of terrorist and extremist structures.
On October 22, from the same city, the Center for Countering Extremism stated about the detention of 34-year-old Denis E. for red paint on three Z-cars. Three administrative protocols were filed against him for “discrediting the Armed Forces”, and he faces a fine of up to 50,000 rubles. for each case. The detainee fully admitted his guilt in the deed. At the same time, he agreed to pay damages to all owners of cars that he doused with paint. In the photo see his work from early October.
Moscow artist, former village teacher Ilya Farber (on the photo) was given 3 years and 2 months in a strict regime colony with a fine of 2.6 million rubles for setting fire to the buildings of the military enlistment office and the conscription point in Igra of the Republic of Udmurtia. It became known on November 9. Ilya fully admitted his guilt, saying that he “wanted to test himself, whether he could throw a bottle, when he saw the fire, he realized what he had done, regretted what he had done.” He also refused to testify in the case. The court, taking into account the mitigating circumstances (among others – the state of health, the presence of young children), found him guilty of committing two crimes under Part 2 of Art. 167 of the Russian Criminal Code (deliberate destruction and damage to another’s property with the infliction of significant damage, committed by arson out of hooligan motives). At the end of May, the FSB detained Farber on suspicion of setting fire to buildings, finding him with two canisters of gasoline, wire, potassium permanganate and smartphones. The detainee later confessed to the arson.
According to information from September 29, the FSB in the Republic of Mordovia detained a 21-year-old resident of the region involved in the illegal acquisition, carrying and storage of explosives. “During the operational-search activities at the place of residence of the suspect, gunpowder and chemical reagents were found and seized. During the interrogation, the defendant said that he intended to make an improvised explosive device and carry out the so-called “protest action” against the ongoing special military operation by arson or “undermining a state institution in the region. The examination found that the confiscated items belonged to propellant explosives and could be used to equip IEDs. The suspect confessed to illegal possession of explosives and abandoned the idea of committing an illegal act.” A criminal case has been initiated against the guy for illegal acquisition, carrying and storage of explosives. There are no other details.
On October 26, a Russian court in Crimea sentenced Aziz Feyzullaev to 3 years in prison and a fine of 700 thousand rubles on charges of throwing a Molotov cocktail at the administration building of the village of Pushkino. According to the Russian court, in early June 2022, at night, while at his place of residence, the defendant made incendiary devices, then set fire to them and threw them through the window into the room. There was a fire in the deputy’s room and the partial destruction of the property. The court stated that the defendant fully recognized himself guilty of the charge brought against him, however, he refused to testify. There are no public comments by the convict or his defense.
The arson of a relay cabinet, which can be seen in the next photo, took place in Ufa, the capital of Bashkortostan. On October 19, there was set fire to a parallel track connection point, on October 24 – a sectioning post and a relay cabinet, and on October 25 – a network control point and four cabinets. Thanks to this, it was possible to stop the movement to the military industry objects, thereby delaying the arrival of equipment and personnel for the war with Ukraine. On November 3, it was reported that punishers captured in Ufa four students in the case of these arsons: 18-year-old Emin Sadygov, Mustafa Shahbazov, Farrukhjon Zokirov and 17-year-old Amin Sadygov. Several criminal cases were opened against the suspects under Part 2 of Art. 205 – “Act of terrorism”. The defendants face up to 20 years in prison. During the investigation, the students were taken into custody.
At about 3 a.m. on October 26, a room of United Russia was set on fire in Moscow. An unknown person threw a Molotov cocktail into the window of the building of the party chairman’s central reception on Kutuzovsky Avenue. According to ASTRA, the building’s security guards extinguished the fire. Nobody has been detained. On the same day, information appeared about an attack on the city enlistment center of Kyzyl, the Republic of Tuva. When firefighters arrived, the window was on fire. Fragments from a bottle, a medical mask and a rag soaked in fuel were found at the site. The building was guarded by two policemen, the fire is said to have been quickly extinguished.
A 59-year-old woman in Kemerovo was detained on October 28 for attempting to set fire to a military enlistment office. An estimate engineer of a local construction company, Elena Sharova, wanted to throw a Molotov cocktail at the door, but it fell next to the porch. The building was practically not damaged. She had no previous convictions, but at the time of the report, the issue of initiating a criminal case was being decided.
Two pieces of news from October 30: in Almetyevsk, the Republic of Tatarstan, a 19-year-old student was detained. The day before, he climbed over the fence of the local military commissariat and allegedly tried to set fire to an idle cable lying on the ground. At the time of the arson attempt, he was detained by the cops. A case was initiated against a student for attempted damage to another’s property (Art. 167 of the Russian Criminal Code). And in the Altai village of Ust-Kan, an unknown person threw a Molotov cocktail into the wooden building of the military commissariat on Sovetskaya Street. There was no fire and no one was arrested.
From the beginning of autumn to October 23, seven Z-cars burned down in Omsk. On the available recordings, journalists note the use of explosive packages by partisans, which are thrown on the hood. The first two photos appeared on October 20, the next ones – in early hours of November 7. But that morning, several more cars were set on fire in the same area, so it is not known whether the Z-swastika was the cause.
On November 7, at about 6 p.m. local time, an elderly woman tried to set fire to the military commissariat of Angarsk, the Irkutsk region, with the help of three Molotov cocktails. She threw two of them into the building, and the third bounced off and hit a car belonging to an enlistment office employee. Cocktails did not catch fire, and the woman was quickly detained. She looks to be 60-70 years old. Her personality and motive have not been revealed.
On October 23, in Ukhta, Komi Republic, a local resident Vladimir Lyashko was searched and detained on suspicion of destroying a memorial plaque to Motorola (one of the deceased commanders of the so-called Donetsk People’s Republic). The man was taken out of the house in handcuffs. A disabled mother remained in the apartment, whom he takes care of: she herself does not see well and can hardly do anything with her hands. During the search, the security forces were looking for an ax or a hammer, but they seized the equipment of Lyashko and his mother. Under the article on “destruction of a memorial structure to a person who defended the Fatherland or its interests”, he faces up to 3 years in prison. The detainee pleads not guilty.
The trial of the Svetlogorsk rail partisans began at the end of September. Dmitry Ravich, Denis Dikun and Oleg Molchanov are accused of setting fire to a relay cabinet, which led to a disruption in the movement of trains with equipment and ammunition of the Russian occupiers through the territory of Belarus. Then the Lukashists fired at the partisans and wounded them. As we wrote in the summer, the guys face huge sentences, but, fortunately, they were detained until the introduction of an amendment to the Criminal Code of Belarus, which provided for execution. Cowardly accomplices of the regime traditionally hold a court session behind closed doors in order to hide the details of the criminal case.
On October 18, the Belarusian Railway stated that several trains were late. Near Gomel, partisans damaged the contact network. The damage occurred due to some foreign object thrown onto the contact wire, the social networks of Belarusian railway workers report. “During the passage of a freight train, an unidentified object caught on the pantograph (current collector) of the locomotive, followed by tension and a break in the contact network.” Trains were delayed by up to 2 hours or more.
The next day it became known about the sentence to the Belarusian rail partisan. Sergei Glebko was sentenced to 11 years in a penal colony and a fine of 300 basic units (9,600 Belarusian rubles). In March of this year, Glebko lit a fire in Stolbtsy on the main track just before the passage of a passenger train. The locomotive brigade did not have time to slow down and the train drove over the fire. The driver of the coal freight train following the passenger managed to stop the train in front of the fire. Photo incident – instead of the title picture.
And not about anti-militarist sabotage but simply social war: a 52-year-old former employee of a real estate rental company in Barnaul, the capital of the Altai, set fire to the chief’s Mercedes for not paying his salary. The paintwork of the car was damaged, thanks to the vigilance of eyewitnesses, further ignition was prevented. CCTV footage was used to identify the suspect. He did not deny his involvement. For arson, he faces up to 5 years in prison.
The boiler is already starting to boil. And we have not yet seen neither the second wave of mobilization in Russia, probably planned for January, nor 15-degree cold in the Ukrainian steppes, from which the mobilized will have nothing to escape…
Finally, we recommend that you also read our material on how mobilization in Ukraine and the impossibility of leaving for men worsen wages and working conditions.
Along with this, you may be very interested to look at a historical piece about the takeover strikes at the factories of Kharkov and the role of anarchists in them, when it became the first capital of Ukraine.