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Full Version: The Truth about Beslan & Russia's 'So Called" Human
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While Beslan was a big issue for the world while it was in progress, the trut is that it has been mostly forgotten by everyone. Unfortunately, a study of what went on there is a classic case of how Russia STILL views the rights of those who are caught in it's operations.

I think that you will learn a lot from this article.

I do have one point of contention with the article. At the end, Mr. Satter states the following:


Quote: It is also possible that the ease with which the terrorists took over the school was not solely the result of official incompetence. The Russian authorities may have deliberately allowed the terrorists to take over the school in order to have an excuse to destroy them.

To assume that the Russians were organized enough to intercept, interpretet, and actually take the time to scheme this outcome, means that one must give them the benefit of being efficient. I reject this completely. Russians have notoriously proven that they are incapable of being professional about any military operation. They are classically incompetent, and rely only upon 'mass' to acheive objectives. This has been the MO for well over a century, even before the Union of Soviet Socialists, so why would they be able to change now?

Anyway, read the article and get a better view of Russian society and how it values the lives of it's innocent citizens AND it's ability to conduct surgical operations. They are dismal to state the very least.
Quote:He also brought out a note with demands from Shamil Basayev, the terrorist leader who had organized the attack but was not himself present in Beslan. The existence of the note was concealed from the public. The authorities falsely stated that the terrorists had presented no demands.

In fact, the conditions suggested by Basayev were not unreasonable.

John, for me the article is untrustworthy.

Yeah, I would never want to be a hostage about to be rescued by Russia's so-called elite forces (recall how 100+ people died in the Dubrovka theater rescue because they weren't treated for the knockout gas). I'd take my chances against the terrorists for a better chance at survival.

The article presented a too sympathetic portrayal of a man who enjoyed killing the most helpless of people, further exemplified by the hospital siege in Budennovsk (http://www.phrusa.org/research/mneutrali...tchec.html).

Anyone who describes Basayev, the mastermind of hundreds of deaths of the weakest of people, as "reasonable" is a real sick b*stard.

-S
Stars & Stripes Wrote:
Quote:He also brought out a note with demands from Shamil Basayev, the terrorist leader who had organized the attack but was not himself present in Beslan. The existence of the note was concealed from the public. The authorities falsely stated that the terrorists had presented no demands.

In fact, the conditions suggested by Basayev were not unreasonable.

John, for me the article is untrustworthy.

Yeah, I would never want to be a hostage about to be rescued by Russia's so-called elite forces (recall how 100+ people died in the Dubrovka theater rescue because they weren't treated for the knockout gas). I'd take my chances against the terrorists for a better chance at survival.

The article presented a too sympathetic portrayal of a man who enjoyed killing the most helpless of people, further exemplified by the hospital siege in Budennovsk (http://www.phrusa.org/research/mneutrali...tchec.html).

Anyone who describes Basayev, the mastermind of hundreds of deaths of the weakest of people, as "reasonable" is a real sick b*stard.

-S

One thing you are overlooking. While I will agree with you about BAsayev's general lack of being reasonable, the writer was refering to that one instance. and perhaps he was attempting to be reasonable then. The point is that the issue is about Russian incompetence and disdain for protecting innocent citizens. The truth is that if there was a chance of saving them, the Russians should have done all that was reasonable to ensure their safety. Clearly they did not.
The only thing I leave with is Russian's attitude toward the individual. It is Asian in basis.

Read a work a while back about a retired soldier in the area when this happened and his child was involved and he told the writer he knew the kid would die because he had been in on "rescue" operation himself and saw how Russki soldiers killed about everyone involved.

The thing where they gassed about everyone in the theater was probably SOP for Russki.
A small correction first:

Quote:The thing where they gassed about everyone in the theater was probably SOP for Russki.

In reality, use of gas was the right and perhaps the only idea, and it would have worked if the Russians planned better beyond the initial step. One can compare this episode with Waco which also resulted in massive civilian losses.

Do we interpret the Waco incident as a sign of FBI/ATF incompetence of as the fullfillment of their intend to cide Branch Davidians?

Now, the bigger picture.

The article omits some key details and therefore paints an entirely wrong picture.

1. There was a hospital takeover episode several years ago that resulted in freeing the hostages and allowing the terrorists to leave, I *think* Basayev was running that one too. The outrage was such that allowing the terrorists to get away again was politically very difficult for Putin.

2. Basayev's promise of a peaceful semi-independend Chechnya was something that has been tried already and did not work, Chechnya, following the first conflict was a major source of criminal activity.

3. While Basayev may have been correct attributing the 1999 apartment building bombings to FSB/Putin, he neglected to mention that the Chechen forces were at the time involved in invasion of Dagestan, and this attack is impossible to attribute to the Russians.

Because of 2. and 3. it is insane to call Basayev's demands "reasonable".

The only part of the article I agree with is that saving the civilians/children was not very high on the priority list; what was high is the appearance of decisive actions to stop the terrorists.
Remember the times when Russia was ostracised for its bombardements of Chechnia? Unfortunately, they became freeloaders of Bushs crusade against Terrorism and that justifies everything inhuman the Russians commit.
There is much that is correct in your comparison with Chechnia and the WoT, as well as Waco, but one caveat to remember is that any attempts to end incidents are not routinely designed to kill innocents. If a policy is brought to bear beforehand to shoot the hostages to get at the hostage-takers, then that policy should be debated - not the incident.
MV,

I think the gas idea was the best idea. The use of the levels of the gas were obviously stupid though. Stupid or lack of concern. I'm not Russian,but I think Russian culture accepts things mine wouldn't as understandable.

The soldier whose son was killed at Beslan said he knew he would be killed by Russian soldiers because their tactic is to indiscriminately kill everyone. He has done it himself,he said,in a raid.

The Waco fire,IMO,was not done on purpose by the government actors.
Achilles Wrote:MV,

I think the gas idea was the best idea. The use of the levels of the gas were obviously stupid though.

Nay, even that was correct. (I recall discussing this incident extensively on another board). High levels of gas were necessary to cause instant reaction and prevent the terrorists from detonating.

What was messed up was the evacuation. They probably would have saved many more people by quickly setting up a portable hospital on the scene rather than moving the people and suffocating them in the process.

This kind of error: think through the first step very well and not think through the next one is typical for bureaucracies. Someone in the chain of command forgot to issue an order to prepare the second step, or chose not to. The error is very typical for the Russians, they do it nearly every time, but similar examples can be easily found in other places. US examples include the Iraqi war (brilliant execution of Step 1 with insufficient thinking about Step 2), the Kosovo war (not thinking about the obvious geopolitical consequences), and perhaps Waco (I'm still not 100% sure that the extermination of the sect was not a deliberate act of the Clinton/Bush regime).
OK. I recall before it happened,I told some guys they ought to gas the place,but I assumed you could use gas that didn't bring on death. I think airlines ought to install something like that. Pilots have masks,push a button,put everyone to nighty night,then disarm the islamic terrorist,open the emergency evacuation door and "let him go".
They had a problem of a very large volume that had to be covered quickly, so that all the terrorists are incapacitated nearly simultaneously; a theater is much larger than an airplane. This forced the use of more powerful gas.

Now, as I recall, the gas did not really kill outright, but caused a paralysis. Most of the deaths were caused by the evacuation where they carried out the victims in such a way that they suffocated or choked to death.
This could have been prevented by administering first aid on the spot and to a large degree simply by instructing the evacuation personal better.