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Sergey Dorenko television program, never broadcast
Written by   
, 13 2010

ImageToday is the 11th anniversary of the apartment bombing on the Kashirsk highway. Weare publishing excerpts from a program hosted by Dorenko dedicated to this tragedy and prepared in for ORT television in September of 2000, but never aired when the show was cancelled.

Program host (onscreen): Hello. Well, it's been a year since the apartment building blasts in Moscow. Theanniversary of the blast at Kashirsk is a little later, but in our memory this series of bombings runs together. Before Moscow, there was Buynaksk. Afterwards, there was Volgodonsk. ButMuscovites have long been accustomed to the fact that somewhere down south something flashes then fades away, there's a war on, and they don't think about it much. TheMoscow bombings, however, brought fear. Afear of going to sleep. Thoughts about what would happen to you or your loved ones if your apartment house were the blow up. And hatred. Hatred not only against terrorists, but all Chechens in general.

And a majority of us gave the authorities the right to shed any blood, do anything, absolutely anything, including the use of nuclear weapons, if it helped, if only we could sleep peacefully again. Thebombings made us the supporters of widespread searches of vehicles, bags and pockets. Especially searches of people from the Caucasus. Thebombings made us the supporters of the fastest and harshest measures in restoring order at any cost in Chechnya. And the bombings still rumble within the soul of every one of us.

Caption: Correspondent Ilya FILIPPOV

Correspondent (onscreen): The official memorial service for those slain in the apartment building bombing on Guryanov Street is scheduled for 11am. Mostof the tenants, however, came here the night before. Exactly one year after the night of September 89. People decided to commemorate their loved ones by the clock, as the time of the tragedy was midnight.

Caption: Author of the report Ilya Filippov, Mikhail Sotnikov

Correspondent (off screen): Clearly, there were not enough places to stand next to the temporary memorial. Aline of people formed to place flowers and candles. Despite the late hour, people even came with their children. Those who arrived later quietly shook hands with friends and then went at once to a wooden cross and granite slab on which is written that a chapel is to be built here. Tonight everyone here remembers what they went through on this spot a year ago.

Woman (onscreen): When it all happened, my God, our apartment just collapsed. Alittle island remained in which our whole family survived, but next to us, all our neighbors, all close to us like family, we lived here 25years, Alyosha, we all knew each other and parents and relatives, they were all killed. Whenwe got up off the ground, in the first moments, you know, it was terrible: moans and cries, save me, help me, it's difficult to remember they were already carrying injured children out

Correspondent (off screen): Tonight came those who lost their friends. Andof course, those who lost parents or children. There are people who say they lost everyone. Theexplosion on the Guryanov Street claimed 109lives. Several bodies were never found. Itwas said that when they were cleaning up the debris there were people walking around with buckets, collecting human remains. Now, almost right on the same spot, they have built houses. Theconstruction site is listed with the Municipality. Thisis what the site looks like during the day. Witnesses of the blast say they were told at the time that the site was to be turned into a memorial park.

Alexander (onscreen): Icame because my friend was killed here. Mybest friend, whom Iknew my whole life, since summer camp. Hisbody has still not been found, Ithink there are 14like that who were never found and don't have graves for their relatives to visit. Theyhave nowhere to go except to this here cross. Andthey come to the cross, and they see this construction site, which is constantly working. Andeven now, while people are gathering here, they don't stop working. (Correspondent: Do you think we must stop them from working?) Idon't think we should stop. I'm more radical and think that they never should've started. Butmorale and morality, they probably aren't the most important things in the world.

Correspondent (off screen): After the attack, survivors were given shelter. 369apartments. Those who were officially registered (to the destroyed apartments). Thevictims believe that it is the sacred duty of the officials to help them. Mostofficials are convinced that the debt was fully repaid within the first few days following the tragedy. Therefore these buildings are going up here in the next phase of construction in the capital city. Itis no concern of the victims. Apartments in these buildings have already sold. Anyone who wants to can settle here. If anyone wants to.

Correspondent (off screen): Survivors of the blast on the Kashirsk Highway, not including those who were not home at the time, are but two. Yuriis one of them. For9 months following the tragedy he did not leave his hospital bed. Butafter leaving the hospital, on the 13th of every month he comes here. Hetalks with his slain wife and thinks about that terrible morning.

Yuri Safontsev (onscreen): My wife asked fearfully: what is it? AndI said Idon't know! Iwanted to brush it off and then both flew down! Whenthe collapse happened, Icouldn't understand what was going on, Ithink Iwas asleep. Sometimes you have a dream where you are flying Andthen Ilook around me, rocks, Ican't breathe (BEGINNING OF CHRONICAL)

Safontsev (onscreen): After some time not far from me Iheard some voices. Istarted screaming, and they started digging me out. Istarted to move and Ithought that now they'd pull me out. Grabmy arms! Pullme out! Ithought I'd get up and go do something. Whenthey pulled me out Ifelt the pain of something serious. (CHRONICAL: Safontsev's yell. Rescuers: Get him water! Water right now! They let him drink from a hose.) And they started to lift a slab off me. Iwas ready to die right then and there. Forme that's not a problem. Tobe honest, after all this, Ididn't really want to live.

Correspondent (off screen): Yuri says that his daughter, who nursed him, breathed the life back into him. All the money allocated by the authorities in compensation went for his treatment. After the bombing they allowed up to 75thousand rubles (about$3000), depending on damages. Yuri does not live in a new apartment he has no furniture, and they do not give money a second time.

Safontsev (onscreen): Ididn't just ask: give me money up to the ceiling. There's some kind of a fund! Inthe district prefecture where the bombing happened. Andthe money is there. Mydaughter is a member of the committee that distributes the money. Ididn't just ask. But money isn't ever given out from this fund. Why?

Correspondent (off screen): Those who suffered from the Kashirka bombing have also been given the keys to new apartments. 39sets. Butonly to those who were officially registered in the destroyed apartment building. Workers from the local housing department did not repair windows and frames of the neighboring houses another district, Pechatniki, sent their specialists to help. Neighbors in need came to the rescue, and glaziers and carpenters from Guryanov Street came as well. But now residents complain that the buildings near the site of the blast need more thorough repairs.

Residents (onscreen): We went there and we were told that we wouldn’t get repairs, only to the exterior. That's what they said. So we’re appealing. In the best case they promise do to something. Otherwise they'll just say they're not obligated, that we want everything for free, to have everything done at the State's expense. They say if they do it for us, then others will want something.

Correspondent (off screen): This is the view of the site of the tragedy from the window of a house across the street. The window block in the wall is clearly coming off the building. Here is paper tape placed to control cracking. Itis torn. And here is the wall outside the house. Thecrack is simply cover up with plaster. Thisis Kashirka. Itneeds a major overhaul. Andon Guryanov Street the authorities still need to erect a chapel and a memorial park.

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