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The nice guys are on the warpath
Written by rosbalt.ru   
, 21 2010
  ,      The Orel partisan-nationalists, accused of arson and bombings of local police stations, prosecutor's offices, and stores and cafes belonging to a minorities from the Caucasus, have turned out to be some nice-looking fellows. Andthat is the worst part of it all.
According to the district prosecutor’s office, Major Victor Lukonin, a 32-year-old physical education teacher at the Federal Protective Service (FSO) academy in Orel, was the head of the detachment. TheFSB took him into custody at 3am on August 8th at one of the highway patrol posts in Orel. Found inside his car was a pen-like device that was actually a single-shot gun that fired small-caliber ammunition, as well as religious CDs and leaflets, reported Maria Shakin, press spokesman for the Orel regional Internal Affairs Directorate. InLukonin's garage were found two sawed-off shotguns, a revolver without a serial number, other pen-guns capable of firing small-caliber ammunition, explosives, components for pipe bombs, and four Molotov cocktails.
According to preliminary data, other group members include men with last names of Zharkikh, Martynov, Romkin, Savoskin, Artamonov, and Shilaev. Itis known that two of them are graduates of the FSO Academy, while the rest include a guard for a private security firm, as well as a worker at the local Unimilk factory, and certain unemployed persons aged 18to 23.
The men detained by the prosecutor's office are charged with a dozen bombings and arson attacks. Theprincipal crime is a bombing that took place during Orel City Day celebrations on August 5th, when a Dagestani-owned cafe called ‘Indira’, located on the outskirts of Orel, was attacked. Abomb packed with nails wounded four, including women and children. Alsoattributed to the group was a small bomb placed in the window of the Orel railway district prosecutor's office, as well as the arson of a nearby police station. Bothincidents occurred at night and left no victims. Inthe latter case leaflets were found at the scene that read: Do as we do, and do it better.
The investigators declined to combine the three incidents into one case, but the underground announced their connection on the Internet. Theycalled themselves followers of coastal guerrillas (ed: anti-corrupt police vigilantes in the Russian Pacific region) and declared that they were raising a banner of open rebellion in the city.
We're tired of putting up with it, read an appeal on the partisan social network portal ‘Folksland’. We don't want to live in a country where every bandit in epaulets can walk free and ruin the life of the best of the Russia's youth! Wedon't want Russian boys dying in prison while real criminals walk scot-free. Wedon't want our people, our city, and our country to sink into a mire of degradation and moral decay. Andso we enter into this unequal battle, a battle we are unlikely to win, a battle that won't prove anything or make any of you open your eyes, because you so stubbornly avoid the Truth.
According to statements by the partisans, they conducted about 20military operations, including the destruction of seven police stations, two prosecutor's offices, a store called ‘Eros’, and several shops and market stalls owned by ‘foreign-born’.
Perhaps the most interesting part of this story was commentary about the ‘heroes of the day’. TheFSO and its Orel academy have abstained from comments, but friends call Major Lukonin a charismatic leader and a pleasant and sociable person. According to them, he has always been the focus of the youths, including students of the academy. Heorganized all kinds of war games and other military sports, and enjoyed great prestige at the academy.
I know the charges against him, but why hide it? Wefelt he was a really cool man! said an academy cadet quoted in the media. In class he was strict, but after lectures he would talk to us on equal terms. There was in him, of course, military bearing, he loved to put you on the spot, make you sweat, but compared to other teachers he was just great! Hehad friendly relations with a good half of the cadet corps, and the girls loved him. Hehad lots of fans following him about!
To say that all his friends were shocked is not saying much. Allthe reports in the press seem to be about a different Lukonin, wrote khandro75 on his blog. I don't believe a word in the press, just as Idon't believe any high-profile case solved by the Russian secret services. Idon't believe the evidence and searches, and Idon't trust in the Russian justice system. ButI believe in Lukonin, an officer loyal to the Russian army and its work, he is a good friend and a cheerful, sociable person. Theirony is that 2years ago he almost got beat up by skinheads in Moscow because he had red laces in his shoes and an Arafat scarf around his neck, which are known attributes of anti-fascists. Butnow he is accused of Nazism.
The interrogators were pleasantly surprised by conversations with the detainees. They behave properly, and don’t exhibit aggression, said Andrei Taldykin, deputy chief of investigations at the Orel regional prosecutor's department. Most of them explain their actions as being that they are not satisfied with the status quo in the nation.
A source at the prosecutor's office stated: The testimony of detainees exceeds all our expectations. Theyhave confessed to several arsons. We're now determining their connections and acquaintances. It's possible that they are part of a larger nationalist organization.
Kirill Levit, acting head of the investigations department, calls them 'boys'. The boys were planning to further develop their activities and, apparently, all subsequent crimes would have an even brasher character, he was quoted as saying on the Radio Liberty website.
And to say nothing about the public the online forums related to the Orel partisans as least as sympathetically as they did to the coastal partisans. This is probably a flare up of the tension here in society, which was actually created by the government, says Dmitry Krayukhin, a human rights advocate in Orel.
This demonstrates growing tension in society, which at any moment is ready to burst out in the form of violent mass protests against the central and local authorities, concluded ‘Folksland’.
But what kind of tension? Whatspecifically do the Orel partisans not like about the status quo in the country? TheOrel prosecutor's office does not specify, and the partisans’ appeal is also not entirely clear, but judging by the term ‘foreign-born’ and the objects they attacked, we are talking about what some have called ‘the bonding of regional governments with ethnic mafias’.
Why it happened in Orel, one can only speculate, but to those who live here what happened is not very surprising. TheOrel area is home to one of the largest concentrations of the Caucasus Diaspora in Central Russia, and the most influential of them are the Chechens.
The great Chechen Diaspora appeared in the Orel region during the late 1980's. Since the beginning of the first Chechen war, refugees fleeing fighting in the region swelled their numbers. Officially about eight thousand are registered here, but there are actually no less than forty thousand, wrote the local paper ‘Gazeta’ in 2004. According to local investigators, nearly all of the local grain business is under the tacit control of Chechen groups, and the lion's share of their income goes to finance illegal armed groups.
Also in 2004, Moscow Komsomolets published a report on The Orel footprint of Shamil Basayev, which described the lives and businesses of relatives of the famous terrorist.
Here are a few details: Whenever there is a stabbing between Chechens and Russians, police appeal to Wahid Basayev for help. Inthe village they're afraid of Wahid Basayev, we were told at the police station. Oncesomeone wrote on his shop in paint: Chechens get out of Russia! Andstole his car. Basayev didn't appeal to the police. Hefound the hooligans and forced them to work for him for a year without pay.
The second time (ed: Shamil Basayev) appeared was during a break between the two Chechen wars, wrote the correspondent. Many of Basayev's relatives celebrated for two weeks, as if Budennovsk (ed: Basayev's terror attack on a maternity hospital) never happened. Shamil drove openly around the Orel region. Theysay he even had a police escort.
There is little doubt that this situation persists in the Orel region today, and it is not just the Chechens. Thesame newspaper, ‘Gazeta’, wrote about a bloody Armenian-Ingush fight in Orel, where Chechen under Ruslan Khuchbarov, a Beslan school attacker nicknamed 'The Colonel', went after a crowd of Ingush, and the Russians stood united with the Armenians. Doesthis remind anyone of the story about the 'Don' children's summer camp? (Ed: reference to a riot between Chechen and Russian teenagers at a summer camp near Krasnodar on July 25th, 2010.)
There is no excuse for the partisans, especially when innocent women and children suffer. Criminals should be punished to the fullest extent of the law, regardless of nationality. Butpeople do not take the law into their hands wherever the law is upheld the same for everyone, where the government works and does not feed from the hand of businesses, including ethnic ones. Meanwhile, the reek of Kondopoga (ed: the riot between Chechens and Russians in Karelia on September 6th, 2006) is even stronger than the peat fires. Itsmolders everywhere: in the army, where violence along ethnic lines is commonplace, in the squares and parks in cities, in children's camps and subway stations. Andthe worst part is that the ‘partisans’ do not resemble monsters.
Chechen bloggers are convinced that a fellow countryman, a suspect in the murder of journalist Yuri Volkov, is also a ‘nice guy’.
By Victor Yaduha
PS: On the night of July 1011, 2010, in a well-known home on Novaya Street in Orel, the body of 49-year-old Isa Gaytukaev was found. Hewas known as the local leader of the Chechen Diaspora, according to the Orel newspaper ‘Gazeta’. Gaytukaev was nicknamed 'Fang', and his range of interests included purchasing grain and trading in alcohol. Hewas killed by several gunshots to the head. Asuspect was arrested, but his name has not been released.

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