In this publication we will look at thirteen Russian tankmen from 136th Motorized Rifle Brigade (MRB), who received their awards for taking part in the undeclared war against Ukraine.
Russian Federation venerates many Soviet traditions, among other things it continues to celebrate the Defender of the Fatherland Day on February 23. The festive events are held pompously, veterans of various wars are invited, starting from the participants of the Second World War and the “internationalist soldiers” of the Afghan war up to the “heroes” of the war against Ukraine. We believe, participants of the Syrian campaign will be joining them in assembly halls very soon.
While Russia continues to deny its participation in combat operations in Donbas in the International Court of Justice, people in Russian provincial towns continue to honor their soldiers who carried out the Kremlin’s orders on the territory of Ukraine. For some reason, on February 2017, Russian military command decided to shake off dust from some award orders of December 2014 and actually issue the medals to some additional soldiers who had been on the so called “Ukrainian missions”. A group of tankmen of 136th MRB (military unit No. 63354, Buynaksk, Republic of Dagestan, Southern Military District), who were serving in this military unit back in 2013-2014, suddenly got a bunch of medals. Probably, many of them have returned to their civil lives and were hardly expecting any additional handouts from the Kremlin. Or maybe those soldiers knocked on every door and finally managed to get their exploits officially acknowledged. Or maybe the red tape just took too long, as it is often the case in Russia. Who knows… This way or another Russian high military command tried to keep a profile as low as possible for the participants of combat operations in Ukraine.
Saratov February 20, 2017 (the first trio)
“A solemn event dedicated to the Defender of the Fatherland Day is being held in Saratov Red Banner Institute of Internal Affairs of Russian Federation today.” – reported SarInform newspaper.
The feature informs that a Medal of Suvorov was awarded for: “personal courage to reserve sergeant Alexander Zasuhin #1 – medal #41560, by order of December 25, 2014″ (archived accounts on VK, ОК, photos 1, 2, contacts).
Zasuhin’s account shows the true meaning of his “courage” (information provided by blogger and investigator Askai). In summer 2014, a group of tankmen from 136th MRB were seconded from Buynaksk to the field training camp in the Volgograd Oblast and then to the border with Ukraine, to the town of Kamensk-Shakhtinskiy. InformNapalm already presented in 2014 and 2016 evidence of this unit’s personnel and armament redeployments from Dagestan towards Ukraine.
Two more holders of the Medal for Courage were identified on the photos from the awards ceremony. #2 – Evgeniy Khushanu (archived account, photos, contacts) and #3 – Timur Kiisma (archived account, photos, contacts). Timur Kiisma received the medal #65353.
All three awarded servicemen feature on this group photo (from left to right: Zasuhin, Khushanu, Kiisma).
Kazan February 22, 2017
A solemn reception under the auspices of the President of Tatarstan Rustam Minnikhanov took place today in the Kazan Kremlin on the occasion of Fatherland Defenders Day.
As reported in the Tatarstan Republic newspaper, three reserve servicemen received their awards for courage and bravery in performing their duties: junior sergeant Denis Krainov was awarded a Medal for Courage, privates Alexander Ivanov and Nikolay Zagumenov were awarded Medals of Suvorov.
#4 – Alexander Ivanov was found among Zasuhin’s comrade-in-arms from the 136th MRB (archived account, photos, contacts). Medal #41569 was issued by the order of December 25, 2014, actually handed over in February 2017.
Gorno-Altaysk on February 22, 2017 (another trio)
“A solemn event in honor of the Defender of the Fatherland Day was held in the National Theater. In the spirit of our tradition, only the best men who had chosen to serve their Fatherland, were awarded with state awards. Although they were only privates, Yuriy Takinov, Meirzhan Tulepberdinov and Esen Shutuev received special award – the Medal of Suvorov for personal courage, bravery and excellent performance in combat.” – regional radio and television broadcaster Gorniy Altai reported in a video about the ceremony.
The secrets of these former soldiers are easily told through their photo albums and their contacts on social networks. All these privates were tankmen of the 136th MRB from Buynaksk, Dagestan.
#5 – Esen Shutuev (archived account on VK, ОК, photos 1, 2, contacts) was awarded Medal of Suvorov by order of December 2014. The story of Shutuev’s service is presented below (first in the training unit in Peschanka village, then in Dagestan).
#6 – The video also shows the awarding of Yuriy Takinov Shutuev’s colleague from 136th MRB; his photo album vividly details the process of redeployment of T-90 main battle tanks (MBT) from Dagestan to the border with Ukraine.
#7 – Meirzhan Tulepberdinov unfortunately has not saved any evidence of his service in Buynaksk, but he is on the friend lists of all the tankmen from 136th MRB and was also awarded a Medal of Suvorov.
The rest of subjects of our investigation from the tank battalion of the 136th MRB got more modest awards, and most of them were exposed in the photo albums only in February 2017.
Tactical markings and numbers on Т-90 MBTs are covered with green paint. The same disguise method was detected on the tanks of this modification in Luhansk Oblast in 2014.
#11 – Nikolay Rybakov (last name requires additional verification) from Krasnodar was awarded Order of Courage.
He is the only one, among the soldiers of the 136th MRB tracked in our materials who expressed regrets over the lives of his colleagues killed in action in Ukraine.
“You deserved it!!! But there is no medal that will replace people I was there with! Every one of you is in my soul…I love you and respect you so much…Rest in peace…Thank you for the new life…”- Rybakov wrote in his account.
Unfortunately, we do not know exactly whom he meant. Only the death of Alexander Vedernikov, a tank commander from the 136th MRB on August 24, 2014 was widely publicized. Vedernikov’s account remains on the friend lists of the soldiers discussed above. It is worth mentioning that, Vedernikov’s mother was against his signing a contract feeling he might be sent to Ukraine. But, as we can see, the son disobeyed his mother.
In his photo album, there are also photos of military equipment with covered tactical markings and numbers being redeployed.
Here we see additional evidence of Russian servicemen receiving combat awards and suffering real combat casualties after so called “field training” near the Ukrainian border. As they say, “Once is an accident, twice is a coincidence, three times is an enemy action”. In this publication alone, we have shown 13 soldiers of 136th MRB from Buynaksk who got combat awards. The personnel and armament of this brigade had been detected in Ukraine back in 2014.
· Structure and armament of the 136th MRB
136th Separate Guards Motorized Rifle Uman-Berlin Order of Suvorov, Kutuzov and Bogdan Khmelnitsky Brigade (military unit No. 63354, Buynaksk, Republic of Dagestan, Russia), structure: the Command, 3 mechanized infantry battalions, separate sniper company, tank battalion, the 1st self-propelled howitzer artillery battalion, the 2nd self-propelled howitzer artillery battalion, rocket artillery battalion, antitank artillery battalion, antiaircraft artillery battalion, antiaircraft missile battalion, reconnaissance battalion, UAV company, engineer battalion, NBC protection company, control (communication) battalion, EW company, control and artillery reconnaissance battery (of the artillery commander), control and radar reconnaissance platoon (of air defense commander), control platoon (of reconnaissance commander), maintenance battalion, logistics battalion, headquarters company, medical company, instructors platoon, training simulator platoon, training range, brass band.
Equipment in service: 40 pcs. T-72B3, 1 pc. T-72BK, 120 pcs. BMP-3, 9 pcs. BTR-82A, 27 pcs. BTR-80, 6 pcs. GAZ-233014 Tigr (IMV), 15 pcs. MT-LB, 18 pcs. BM-21 Grad MLRS, 36 pcs. 2S3M Akatsiya, 152-mm SPG, 18 pcs. 2S12 Sani 120-mm mortar, 12 pcs. MT-12 “Rapira” 100mm anti-tank gun, 12 pcs., 9P149 Shturm-S self-propelled anti-tank missile system, 4 pcs. BRDM-2, 12 pcs. 9K331 Tor-M1 tactical surface-to-air missile system, 6 pcs. 9A34(35) Strela-10 armored vehicle surface-to-air missile system, 6 pcs. 2S6M Tunguska self-propelled anti-aircraft gun, 27 pcs. 9K38 Igla man portable surface-to-air missile.
This investigation adds 13 servicemen from the 136th MRB to the list of Russian war criminals. They also will be added to the InformNapalm database which already contains 80war criminals awarded with different medals. Besides, this has been the ninth episode of the 136th MRB personnel participating in the “Ukrainian missions”. Read more on the topic in the previous publications of our volunteer intelligence community:
- Т-90 tanks and Akatsiya self-propelled howitzers of 136th MRB from Dagestan at the border with Ukraine2014-10-07
- Ukrainian photo sessions of Russian tankmen of 136th MRB2014-10-19
- Russian T-90 Tanks of the 136th Motorized Rifle Brigade in Luhansk Oblast2014-10-20
- Russian Propaganda Bragging about 136th Separate Motor-Rifle Brigade in Debaltseve2015-02-15
- Video on participation of the Russian 136th Motorized Rifle Brigade in the war in Donbas(watch on youtube) 2015-02-19
- Tracking Down A Scout From The 136th Brigade 2015-02-03
- Photo hunt for Russian Tiger in Donbas2016-09-20
- Tankmen of Russian 136th Motorized Rifle Brigade in Ukraine, 09/06/20162016-09-06
- Russian Artillery of the 136th Motorized Rifle Brigade Identified in Ukraine2016-09-08
Author: Victory Krm
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