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IT WAS VERY SIMPLE BOMBING ON A PEACEFUL DAY
Written by /Anna Politkovskaya   
, 03 2004

'Novaya gazeta'

Another boy died: verses were dedicated to him and his mother wrote to the President.

All last spring our governments war continued in the zone of anti-terrorist operations, a war against its children, who are growing up a free people for a free country. Airplanes and helicopters of the federal air force dropped munitions helter-skelter, and thus the spring of 2004became top notch with respect to infanticides. Atenth grader who received grave injuries in a bombing raid died recently. He was Ibragim Khashagulgov, and he was sixteen years old

We already wrote about this infanticide (issue No. 21), but as yet we do not know the finale, and so we will return to it. Recall that on the evening of March 25th, high school seniors and other students were gathered on the banks of the only creek in the village of Orjonikidzevskaya Station. It was the first day of spring break. Sometime after 10P.M. helicopters flew over and fired rockets at the group. One boy died on the scene, and two other were seriously wounded. One of these became completely handicapped, while Ibragim Khashagulgov lay in a coma. He never recovered consciousness after brain surgery, and passed away. Aclassmate dedicated a poem to him:

A ymer on sovsem ne kak geroy

I ne spasaya iz ognya rebyonka

I ne s voyny dostavali domoy

A ochen prosto v mirniy den BOMBYOZHKA

But he did not quite die a hero,

And not while rescuing a child from a fire,

And they did not bring him home from war

It was very simple BOMBING on a peaceful day.

The boy's mother, Madina Akhmedovna Khashagulgova (Ibragim was her first-born), did not write verses, but a letter to Putin. Henever answered. Madina Akhmedovna, however, was certain that he was never given her letter, but if her letter were to be published then Putin would reply intelligently and argumentively, as only he knows how:

Explain to me how can he sleep at night, the president of a great country, the father of two children, when a professional combat pilot can shoot rockets at 16-year-old schoolchildren in his country? No words or reasons about the Global War On Terrorism can convince me that children should be accidental victims of counter-terrorist operations I am convinced deeply that a republic that one can drive across by car in a half hour cannot enjoy the euphoria of prosperity if its densely populated regions, that is, the capital of the Sunzhenskiy region, Orjonikidzevskaya Station, is receiving missile attacks by combat helicopters

This may sound not entirely ethical, but, in order to imagine the entire horror of that night, suppose for a moment that it happened to your child. I can only guess what these children experienced while they were rushing about, trying to hide from the bright rockets, as they fell, their fingers digging into the peaceful soil of a Great Power. Meanwhile, up above, in a helicopter equipped with modern fire-control systems, highly professional Russian pilots fulfilled their military duty

I am convinced that a republic, or even a country, in which human life is worth nothing, where the loss of an ordinary citizen can be ignored, cannot have a future During the days of our family's tragedy, not a single government representative, to say nothing of the military, inquired about what had happened, or offered assistance, not even medical, even though the military has available a modern base that could provide it. On top of such cynicism and callousness, not a single representative of the government either publicly or privately expressed their sympathy to the families of the dead children Only students from the local colleges summoned the courage to hold a demonstration in the republics capital, to get an answer to the question: why are they killing our contemporaries? Their answer followed without delay. The demonstration was broken up, the students were severely beaten, some were arrested and charged with crimes, and many were threatened with expulsion from college. Similar repressive measures are already a part of politics that Ihave no desire to discuss.

Today it is vitally important for me to obtain answers to these questions: specifically who was he who shot my child? Upon what national interests did my child encroach? How can the interests of the military department crush the entire justice system of our country? Why is an information vacuum purposely created around any such event when one of the participants is in the military? After what happened, do we as parents have the moral right to educate our three remaining sons as future defenders of the fatherland?

I do not need material assistance, because all the goods in the world could replace my son. Iask you to answer my questions, and promote an objective investigation of this crime and in exposing and punishing those guilty, because only in this do Isee any point to the rest of my life


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