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Interesting documentary about the war

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VERY interesting. Well worth the 38 minutes to watch.

Probably the best doc on the era I have ever seen. Lots of great first person accounts by soldiers, great footage, esp the destroyed convoys in the Salang Pass; a description of an operation that sounds like it could make for a good CMA scenario/campaign. Great sayings re the accuracy of the tribesmen's British Enfields (I assume): "You raise your head, you are dead." Wonderful stuff.

And the Soviet inf carried 70 kilos(!) That's around 140 pounds. My knees ache just thinking about it.

Even RL executions of Russian prisoners by the Muj. Be warned, there is some grim stuff here. But, I learned a lot. It's a very good understated film that one isn't sure if it's propaganda or not. It makes the war seem so futile and hopeless that you want to shoot yourself.

It occurred to me how much better Hollywood could have done this as a "Why We Fight" film that could have helped support the US efforts in Afghanistan (and elsewhere). Maybe a good thing they didn't then.

And what an ironic ending as the Soviets leave the country having "given it back to the people so they can leave in peace the way they want" or words to that effect - esp in light of the current west's pull out.

Thank you for finding this.

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Thanks for sharing. I second all of Erwin's comments.

It's rather hauntingly similar to both Vietnam and the current conflict. "Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it" and all that.

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Interesting video.

The British rifle feared by the Soviet commentator was the old .303 Enfield. The Mujahideen had their AK-47s aplenty, but the Enfiled rifle was more accurate and had a much longer range and the power to penetrate Soviet flak jackets. Hence the Russians hated the things. See page 4 of Sandhurst's Conflict Studies Research Centre doc: http://edocs.nps.edu/AR/org/CSRC/csrc_jan_02.pdf

The afghan rebels appeared to be using a Blowpipe when discussing how much they got paid ($25,000) for shooting down a plane. The blowpipe was an anti-aircraft missile which the British supplied to the Mujahideen (1981-ish). Both the Argies and the Brits used them in the Falklands but not very effective (1 plane-kill each, for nearly a hundred used). They are still used today by the Taliban. Later (1985-ish) the US-supplied its Stinger, a similar but newer generation of AA missile.

Yes, it was a bit like a Soviet Vietnam - and deliberately so as this is what the US (under Carter) intended - you could say it was a sort of a pay-back for covert Soviet involvement in Vietnam. Carter wanted to suck the Soviets into a quagmire by igniting an "islamic fundamentalist underbelly" along all of Russia's southern borders. This had the effect of toppling the Communist regime in Afghanistan, and dragging the Soviets in, but was a move which has of course come back to bite the US (and the rest of the World) very badly.

The Soviet pack of 70 kilos sounds too heavy but is similar to the 145lbs that the Royal Marines 42-Commando unit "yomped" right across boggy, craggy East Falkland with. If they fell over they couldn't get up without a lot of help. And the ground caused lots of foot injuries. They had to do it because all but one of the British transport chinook helicopters were lost when the Argies sank the Atlantic Conveyor. 42-Commando managed it (75 miles) and fought a battle at the end of it, but they only barely coped, and they were extremely fit, so I wonder how far the Soviet conscripts were going with their packs.

By the way, post-Falklands Brit tactical analysis determined that 72lbs was the most that soldiers should ever carry into battle.

Oh and by the way, that one Falklands chinook is still in British service in Afghanistan today and survived after the pilot was head-wounded when Taliban shot the cock-pit up a couple of years ago: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bravo_November

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Oh, just to clarify:

1) you'll find varying quotes for the weight that the Brits "yomped" across the Falklands. A lot quote 80lbs (36kg) but the marine commandos carried more than the infantry and those lower figures don't include extra ammo and rations they had to carry. Eg, each 42-Commando also carried 2 or 3 mortar rounds (and each round weighed 12lbs), etc.

2) For "Soviet Vietnam", Carter, Mujahideen, Islamic underbelly etc, check out "American Global Strategy and the 'War on Terrorism'" 2007, by Hall Gardner, around p112. here:

http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=BmSpjdDTSnYC&pg=PA112&lpg=PA112&dq=Carter+islamic+underbelly&source=bl&ots=99TeR_61lh&sig=f1ohJRPsIpVlrMfeuUYiycOsDl4&hl=en

Though you can search the web for many other references. The Carter administration, "lame-stream" official histories and silly things like "Charlie Wilson's War", gloss over the fact that covert US ops and funding of the Mujahideen etc started at least 6 months BEFORE (and not in response to) the Soviet army entering Afghanistan. The US did this in order to topple the Communist regime and drag the Soviets in (who were supporting the regime). In other words, it was a war the US created. Boy, did they open Pandora's Box......

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ZBP II,

I watched it, not straight through, but more like in chunks. This was easier both in terms of time and my attention span today. Sone thoughts.

I wish I'd had this to watch back when I was a Soviet Threat Analyst, for it was most meaty. BTR-70s, BMP-2s (which actually could deal with Muj above, and I never saw in any Afghanistan imagery) Spetsnaz (the dudes in the tan boonie hats with the striped shirts), Mi-8 HIP, Mi-24 HIND, NSV HMG (first footage I've ever seen of same firing), D-30 122mm gun howitzer battery, still in linear deployment, various Russian trucks, the Salang tunnel I'd only read about previously, Valsella AP & AT mines, small Pakistani made Claymore lights, copied U.S. M19 AT mines, Stinger launch (had seen that before--pulled strings to get the video). Was frustrated that the caption block obscured most of the mine briefing!

I couldn't believe my ears that, in wartime, a soldier would dare criticize high command for mistakes. Our soldiers, even high ranking commanders, don't dare do that in peacetime! I'd never seen anything of Soviet mess procedures, and emphatically no EOD stuff, let alone EOD dogs.

The terrain can't be adequately described in words; it has to be seen to be believed. The truck convoy going up the hairpin turn steep grade reminded me of that famous pic of trucks doing the same thing during WW II on the Lashio Road in Burma.

The body armor, vulnerabilities to real rifle fire, and crushing combat loads fascinated me. I still have the SOLDIER OF FORTUNE issues that covered Russian goodies recovered in Afghanistan. The captured Muj stuff was remarkable, but doubtless a dribble compared to the total flow. Only recently did I learn we were sending weapons into Afghanistan BEFORE the Russians invaded.

Loved the first person accounts, the realities of combat as seen by the frontovik, the medal citations (with much that went unsaid). I found the characterization of the Muj to be more than a bit hypocritical, considering what the Russians historically fomented and the scale on which they did it. That said, the film neatly illustrated the premise "One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter." The Russians called the Muj dushmannyi (bandits) which, of course, was intended to blacken them, and the Ministry of Defense film was at pains to highlight the terrible things the Muj did while resolutely ignoring the ghastly things the Russians did.

Considering the source, I deemed it to be remarkably understated. I can't imagine the Pentagon's EVER countenancing such an honest and painful depiction of the realities of protracted warfare in the harshest of conditions, as evidenced by the on camera execution footage.

The Muj had RPGs on a scale that beggared description, reminiscent of that footage of a German tank hunter unit's clambering out of that truck, with every soldier armed with a Panzerfaust or part of a Panzerschreck team. Gack! The firepower used in some of those attacks from above was simply staggering--RPGs galore and Dushkas.

While I'm at it, I need to make a technical statement regarding something somebody wrote (not even sure where on the Forums I saw it) to the effect the British Blowpipe manportable SAM was the same as the also manportable U.S. Stinger SAM. The Blowpipe was radio command guided, rather like a TOW with no wires but flying to the line of sight. The Stinger used an advanced IR rosette seeker and was autonomous immediately upon launch--a very good thing if you're launching a SAM at an aircraft or helo which has angry friends in support! I believe the Stinger also had a range and ceiling advantage over the Blowpipe.

Thank you very much for bringing this remarkable film to our attention!

Regards,

John Kettler

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Yes the Stinger was definitely an upgrade on the Blowpipe. The British Blowpipe was a bit older, launched line-of-sight then radio guided visually with a sighted-joystick, whereas the US Stinger (during its Soviet-Afghan days) was at least infrared-seeking, faster (roughly 1600mph compared to 1100mph), longer ranged (3.25 miles as opposed to 2.5) and carried a bigger warhead (3kg as opposed to 2.2). However, as a weapon for hitting slow-moving Soviet transport planes and copters (relatively) lumbering across those big Afghan skies, the Blowpipe wasn't a terrible choice, and it did have one advantage (by virtue of being visually guided) of not being susceptible to an aircraft's defensive flares, whereas the early Stingers, being IR, were. Hence, the Stinger was better for targeting faster, higher Soviet jets, and the Blowpipe (if the firer had good visibility) could maybe be almost as good a choice for low, slow targets (if those targets were pumping out protective flares, which, if I recall, Soviet transports at that time did).

Unfortunately for the British forces in the Falklands, they were mainly trying to hit fast low-flying Argy jets and typically had about 20 seconds to aim, fire and guide before the planes disappeared over the next hilltop. They said it was like trying to shoot planes with a drainpipe - as proven by the 1% success rate. By comparison the SAS secretly had half a dozen hot-off-the-press stingers and confirmed 2 kills (33% success rate) despite no training how to use them. After the Falklands the Brits dumped the Blowpipe, bought Stingers and developed their own Blowpipe-replacement - called the Javelin, which is comparable to the Stinger and both have been upgraded with newer tech (such as being able to distinguish between flares and aircraft signatures) for current use.

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Streety,

Wiki indicates the Blowpipe's performance in Afghanistan was rather underwhelming, and now that I know it was MCLOS (Manual Command Line Of Sight, like a SAGGER A), rather than SACLOS (SemiAutomatic Command Line Of Sight, like a TOW or SAGGER B), I understand why this was so.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blowpipe_(missile)

In searching for Stinger performance data in the Afghanistan War, I found this insightful and damning analysis of the Stinger story, which includes information that the Muj got almost no training at all in the operator skill intensive Blowpipe. Even more interesting is what the U.S. didn't and wouldn't supply the Muj and how our perception of the Muj was also skewed by what we "knew was true" about them. An extremely worthwhile read!

http://europauniversitypress.co.uk/auth_article416.html

Regards,

John Kettler

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Liked that second link!

Oh, I wasn't trying to suggest that either was a massive success in Afghanistan, I just trying to weigh up some of their relative (rather than absolute) merits.

Yes, the Blowpipe was hard to use (but I deliberately chose my words rather than simply use "MCLOS" terminology as MCLOS can give the misleading idea that the missile was simply manually aimed and manually fired in a "line-of-sight" fashion like a simple gun - MFVG (manually fired and visually guided), would give a better description, but no one ever used that.

As to Blowpipe training, I've read that ex-SAS working for MI6 trained some Mujahideen (in secret in Scotland!) but that following poor success, Pakistan then sent some officers into Afghanistan to train the Mujahideen locally. As far as I'm aware there's no hard evidence of either, but if the Blowpipe proved poor in Afghanistan, it's believable that the industry or the British government could save face on the Blowpipe's qualities by subsequently saying the Mujahideen weren't properly trained.

Ditto the Stinger - I'm sure the US military-industrial spin-doctors were only to happy to repeat the Mujahideen's exaggerated claims of enemy planes shot down. It looks good at those Arms-Sales Exhibitions. Much as I'm also sure that the Russians (and the Western forces today, both there and elsewhere) made the most of blaming mechanical failure....

Elsewhere, the Patriot missile was another prime example of such spin. "Truth is the first casualty of war" of course.

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No need, I got it now, thanks. I had never realized there were two current missiles with the same name. That should make international force communications interesting lol.

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One would imagine that in RL, serious communications on the subject of missiles use words and designations designed to eliminate any chance of ambiguity.

For the same reason, RL armies have ways to clearly differentiate between (for example) 105mm AP ammo for tanks and 105mm HE for howitzers...

Using the Internets (Patent Pending) one might even discover what the official designations of the two varieties of Javelins are - and how armies that use both (Canada and the UK?) manage to tell them apart.

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Cranky,

Suvorov/Rezun, in INSIDE THE SOVIET ARMY, tells us the Russians didn't initially have things sorted out so well. Seems the 122mm rockets for the BM-13 Katyusha didn't get to the proving grounds for demo before Stalin during the height of WW II, but 122mm howitzer shells did. Amazingly, Stalin didn't have all concerned sent to the Gulag or shot. Instead, he decreed that rockets for the BM-13 were designated 132mm. I haven't checked on the last claim, which is that the rockets actually grew to 132mm. The Russians also use other odd sizes/designators so that no weapon ever gets the wrong ammo again.

Regards,

John Kettler

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I've read that book - I remember the anecdote.

Normally I regard Suvorov as a writer of entertaining fiction, but there may be some truth in that story - because in RL people have to find ways to make systems work, and sometimes problems aren't immediately obvious until something goes wrong.

All armies must face similar nightmares, and will find ways to make things crystal-clear.

Hell, any reasonably complex endeavour has this issue.

I myself long ago at work learned not to just ask to be passed a screwdriver, but to specify whether I want a Phillips, a Straight-Edge, or the one that we filed down to a point - the Podger.

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ZBP II,

I thought I'd finished watching "Pain & Hope," but I hadn't. Consequently, I got to see a D-30 battery in action, the ONLY footage I've ever seen of a Vasilek automatic mortar firing, an Il-76 dumping flares, more Spetsnaz up close, an radarless ZSU-23/4 (used not for air defense but ground combat; very good against high angle threats, like Muj firing from above) and other goodies.

Cranky,

When it came to the Cold War Soviet Army, Suvorov was the man. Time and again the things for which he was blasted by Western experts were proven correct. These include the IT-1 Drakon ATGM tank

(note Khruschev & Panzer III target)

assault guns

http://pblinov.narod.ru/krasnSU122/img/1.jpg

IT-122

http://www.militaertechnik-der-nva.de/Waffensysteme/Artilleriesysteme/Artillerie/SU122-54/122-mm-SU122-54.html

IT-130 (rendering appeared in INTERNATIONAL DEFENSE REVIEW, and I've seen color pics of the IT-130s which were converted to armored recovery vehicles to hide their true function; said ARVs were paraded through Red Square, and the book I saw them in was official and published in Russia)

http://www.jedsite.info/tanks-tango/tango-numbers-su/t62_series/it-130/it130-intro.html

regimental Grad(p) MRL /BM-21V (first saw this one in a 1980 something DIA manual on the Soviet Airborne Division; weapon accepted in 1967!)

http://www.military-today.com/artillery/grad_v.htm

and more. I can tell you for a fact that the SAM counts went up dramatically in my classified threat docs about a year after Suvorov released INSIDE THE SOVIET ARMY, tracking extremely well with what he'd revealed. Caused pandemonium among many, but I'd already long since brought the matter to the attention of my superiors. Forced wholesale reassessment of SAM threat, defense suppression issues and a slew of other things. Happens when the OPFOR's SAM force increases by 50%!

Oh! The Vasilek was another one of those things the Western experts didn't believe in, but you can see it for yourself near the end of "Pain & Hope."

I can't speak to what Suvorov had to say about WW II and Stalin's plans, having not read at least one key book. I can tell you, though, that my sensitive sources and I all deem Suvorov to be highly credible on Cold WAr and espionage stuff.

Regards,

John Kettler

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I'll have to take your word about the sensitive sources, but have you read Suvorov's book 'Spetznaz'?

One outrageous exaggeration after another.

Smelled like anti-Soviet propaganda to me.

He's a defector - a spook - whose agenda does he serve?

Who owns his publisher?

Are we really expected to believe that his mass-market paperbacks contain privileged info that couldn't be obtained by Western intelligence services?

Or was Suvorov acting as a mouthpiece for said intelligence services, releasing that kind of info in a pop format to aid the propaganda war?

Maybe it suited your superiors to have the 'SAM count' go up.

Or maybe Suvorov is a double agent, leaking certain info to the West that suits his superiors - the Russian ones.

I don't pretend to have inside knowledge, but common sense tells me that things are not always what they seem.

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Cranky,

I have read it, and I considered/consider it extremely valuable. So much did I value it, that it was part of my working library during my Threat Analyst days. If you want to call Suvorov's book "anti-Soviet propaganda," then what did you make of Gebhardt's dismissive analysis in his SPETSNAZ? Lots of stuff Suvorov said Spetsnaz had was later found in Afghanistan.

I'm sure Suvorov/Rezun wrote a highly classified study (never saw it myself) and briefed defense officials extensively (Suvorov does talk openly of giving such lectures), after which the public version was permitted to be published. I can tell you that Western perception of Soviet weapons was basically via mirror imaging and arrogant ("backwards Russians, who could only steal technology").

The U.S. thought the MiG-25 FOXBAT was lightweight, mostly titanium with smallish engines. Not so! It was heavy, mostly steel, used titanium only where essential, had huge engines, a nuclear hardened radar (vacuum tubes), war reserve frequencies of which we knew nothing, a separate J-band radar of which we knew nothing, etc. I know, for i read the inch thick classified assessment of Victor Belenko's FOXBAT.

Suvorov told us about things of which we knew nothing, told us what worked, what didn't and why. The U.S. intel system was/is primarily built around technical means, but the Soviets made it their business to thwart it at every turn, and I myself have seen one of what showed up when they thought we weren't looking. The Russians were caught filling holes on the range from a submunition warhead test! Otherwise, we probably would never have had early warning of this dangerous new capability. It was the British to whom both Penkovskiy and Suvorov defected, not the U.S.

Suvorov showed us the "man behind the curtain" in those terrifying "peep shows" (Ops Dneiper, Zapad 81, etc.) which gave the West nightmares (used all officers and senior NCOs, highly scripted, burned out huge armored forces wholesale), explained how incredibly limited was the actual in tank training for Red Army tankers; how tank companies generally had one actual tank in use at a time and how vanishingly short the service lives of their AFVs were (true; have seen detailed classified analyses). That's NOT ant-Soviet propaganda; that's how the Russians have done things going back to the Potemkin villages built for Catherine the Great. The Soviets freaked out Western naval analysts when the cruiser SVERDLOV made an appearance at the 1953 Coronation Review at Spithead,

http://brisray.com/dad/shead531.htm

and everything on the naval evolution front was perfect. EVERYTHING.

http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/48257747

Not unreasonably, many were concerned this was indicative of the general standard of the Red Navy, but this was a case of the Soviet leadership's wanting to make a stunning impression before the world (Stalin had recently died; things were in flux internally), an impression secured by having officers in EVERY job on the whole cruiser. Sometimes these stunts cowed the foe; other times, as in Khruschev's "missiles coming off the production line like sausages," claim, backfired completely.

I think one of Suvorov's most valuable contributions was showing us how the Soviets organized and planned for war. This was directly reflected in a later Soviet Military Power, which specifically discussed the TVD (Theater of War) concept, exactly as set forth by Suvorov. Suvorov really helped show how different were the Soviet views of things: military philosophy, strategic/operational planning, weapon design approach (exposed monkey model), OPSEC and the radical approach to handling reinforcements in battle.

I would argue that Suvorov was instrumental in helping the West reframe how it viewed the Soviet military. In doing so, he rendered a tremendous service to us and a devastating blow to his homeland.

Regards,

John Kettler

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Cranky,

Specs (never had them before) for the IT-1. Note particularly the limited deployment of the system, its potency for the period and that its deployment is in the two key MDs in which all the goodies are kept for surprise use in wartime--NOT in the GSFG!

http://www.alternatewars.com/BBOW/Tanks/Russian_Missile_Tanks.htm

Extensive drawings of the IT-1

http://www.alternatewars.com/BBOW/Tanks/Object_150-4.gif

Missile specs first entry here.

http://www.alternatewars.com/BBOW/Weapons/Russian_ATGMs.htm

Regards,

John Kettler

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I'm not qualified to make a judgement on whether or not Suvorov alerted the the West to stuff that its intelligence services didn't know about - or whether he may have done so via other means than mass-market paperbacks with shiny covers and a tantalizing blurb.

What I'm saying is that the tone of 'Spetnaz' made me instantly think it was part of the 'Evil Empire' paradigm that was pushed from the 1980's until the West's post-2000 switch to focusing on Muslim Terrorism.

When I say 'anti-Soviet propaganda' it's because I'm aware that deception and psyops is everywhere, and that the perception of people in the so-called democracies is every bit as subject to manipulation as in nakedly oligarchic regimes like the USSR.

I'm not a fan of any of these national security states - not the USSR, the UK or the USA neither - so when you write 'In doing so, he rendered a tremendous service to us and a devastating blow to his homeland' - my response is: what do you mean 'us'?

You mean Soviet Threat Analysts as a group?

It's been 25 years since I read 'Spetznaz'.

What I remember is an emphasis on scary stuff - that the Spetznaz trained endlessly with the sharpened spade - there is even a photograph of a trooper throwing the razor-sharp spade with uncanny accuracy as he leaps through the air...

Told with great relish is the story that each Spetznaz trooper has to look after a pregnant mother cat, and then personally cut it open and remove the kittens.

With equal relish, Suvorov details the various coercive interrogation methods that Spetznaz are trained in - including breaking a man's spine by forcing his body into a U-shape.

He also states that all the Olympic contestants for the USSR in such sports as Ski-ing and Shooting are Spetznaz.

And that Russian sleeper cells exist in countries like the UK - ready to assist para-dropped or submarine-inserted Spetznaz in the event of war - and of course, these sleeper cells - who appear to be ordinary middle-aged Britons - will be be killed by the Spetznaz teams to ensure their silence as soon as they have served their purpose.

Regardless of what useful information may or may not be contained in the book, the tone is that of propaganda.

I'm not even arguing the factual basis of Suvorov's revelations - perhaps it actually is SOP for Spetznaz to carry out ad-hoc veterinary procedures to toughen them up.

It is the way the information is presented that for me is the giveaway as to its intent.

Similarly, when one watches the news in our Free Society, keeping an eye on tone will tell you what intent is behind the information offered.

DISCLAIMER: its been a long time since I read any of Suvorov's books - I enjoyed them, that's what I remember most - like I enjoyed Sven Hassel's books.

If I am completely mistaken in my memories of the content and tone of 'Spetznaz', then please let me know.

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Cranky,

I've talked to my spook contacts and have been informed Suvorov's highly classified (told I'd see it in 50 years) debrief was "eight to nine inches thick" and was released in high intel circles 18 months before INSIDE THE SOVIET ARMY came out. Given such a gigantic amount of information to absorb, this took some time to reflect in the official threat documents the defense contractors were allowed to have.

Spetsnaz was and is hardcore, as seen here

http://www.vincelewis.net/spetsnaz.html

Weapons of the Spetsnaz (1 of 3) Show cover weapons, training, mindset and features interviews with both Western experts and former Spetsnaz. Last vid quite clearly shows how deadly the entrenching shovel can be when thrown.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=igr5_zh3yPo&feature=relmfu

(2 of 3)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mUbqdTk9w1U&feature=relmfu

(3 of 3)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CX_6u5ZVMKE&feature=relmfu

Russian produced Spetsnaz training doc (brutal)

Spetsnaz clips, showing a bunch of environments

Recent Spetsnaz stills

Making the Spetsnaz man a weapon (even worse than earlier brutal vid)

At last!

Spetsnaz deliberately inflicts a major cut on his calf, then nonchalantly sews himself up--with a fishhook and monofilament!

http://www.youtube.com/verify_age?next_url=/watch%3Fv%3Dc8ad_zwjVgk

Suvorov wasn't making stuff up when he said how tough these guys are.

Regards,

John Kettler

P.S.

Some women who are at the very least VDV (Russian Airborne). Note BMDs and characteristic striped shirt. Note also the AGS-17 Plamya Suvorov mentioned.

These are the sorts of women you'd find in the Spetsnaz mixed gender VIP assassination units.

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"These are the sorts of women you'd find in the Spetsnaz mixed gender VIP assassination unit"

> I love it! - They can kill me anytime.

Thank you, Mr Kettler, for those links - I will peruse them with great enjoyment.

Praise Be, our Nuclear Umbrella keeps us safe!

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Cranky,

Here is a remarkable,maddening, apparent Swedish History Channel doc on the KGB's Spetsnaz Group Alfa, which stormed the Presidential Palace in Kabul--against 6:1 odds! 50 Spetsnaz vs. 300 Soviet-trained guards. Why maddening? Subtitles are in Swedish, the interviews in Russian and the English VO sparse. Gah! Fabulous content, including a great deal of Spetsnaz history.

Part 1

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S5QYkrQ_3yA&feature=watch-vrec

Part 2

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJ-HUULdoss&feature=relmfu

Part 3

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=whjkTk7zrIU&feature=relmfu

Part 4

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eRZA4X8PcQ&feature=relmfu

Part 5

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=20CkkLtWWNg&feature=relmfu

Russian produced (alas, no subtitles) Specnaz (alt. spelling) doc. How I wish I spoke Russian! (Warning! Shows incredibly bloody training, live frog skinning, the leg cutting and a bunch of other things).

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Taken in toto, I believe I've shown how incredibly tough, dedicated and brutal Spetsnaz was and is.

Oh, and by "us" I was referring to the West, not Soviet Threat Analysts. Clean forgot to answer that one!

Regards,

John Kettler

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Having just spent the last 2 days wandering around the huge IKEA superstore at Tempe, anything Swedish is hateful to me at present.

It is true that the Russians are a lachrymose, brutal people, whose poetic soulfulness is only equaled by their propensity for extreme violence.

We know a man here - let's call him Vasili P. - who drives a garbage truck.

Perhaps ex-Spetznaz, Vasili is in any event a frightening-looking fellow - over 7 feet tall, built like a bear, and with a pair of brightly mad blue eyes that can shift from joviality to

insane fury in less time than it takes to remove a litter of unborn kittens from their mother.

Vasili killed a man in his native Tomsk - just to see him die - and his family had to pay 150 000 US Dollars to smuggle him out of the country ahead of the dread FSB, who became involved after Vasili's victim's daughter was sold into concubinage to a Federal official.

Vasilli did his best to leave his murderous past behind and begin a new life in Sydney, but trouble has a way of following the Russians, and Vasilli soon fell foul of the very impatient white-collar class that infest our fair antipodean city, constantly bipping their horns at any large vehicle that even slightly delays their headlong commute each morning.

Vasilli was to my certain knowledge driving his garbage truck in Kippax St Surry Hills as part of his normal run, when bipped by a pencil-neck in a Lexus.

A witness tells me that Vasilli leapt from the cab of his truck, snatched down the shovel fastened to the side of the compactor (its edge honed to razor sharpness, of course) and yelled at the pencil-neck:

"You Fock, you! I cut your Focking head off!"

- And he MEANT IT.

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