Triple salary, cargo ‘200’ [dead] and disabled – in the footsteps of Russia’s 8th motorized rifle brigade in Donbas
We continue the ‘Facts of Invasion‘ publication series about the Russian Federation’s regular army participation in the war in Donbas. The articles are based on the data gathered in OSINT investigations. Our new story describes the ‘Ukrainian assignment’ details of the servicemen of the 8th separate mountain motorized rifle brigade (military unit No. 16544, South Military District, Borzoi, Republic of Chechnya, Russia). This article is justified by the photo proofs and written comments of the Russian servicemen and their relatives.
The participation of the 8th brigade in the combats in the territory of Ukraine has been already mentioned. A tactical group made from units of this brigade from Chechnya was disclosed in 2014, in the peak of summer fights in Donbas. Having left traces in Ukraine, the Russian command resorted to a new tactic of its forces usage. The Russian generals started to blend their people into the informal armed formations of ‘Novorossiya’ instead of using tactical groups of regular units. But it was not possible to hold back the truth, no matter how hard the Russians tried. Despite the attempts of the Russian war criminals to conceal the facts of their belonging to the Russian army (by changing names, creating new online profiles or editing the old ones, deleting all the information about their service) – it is still not too complicated to find them. The triplet of ‘Novorossiya’ militants (the 8th brigade’s contract servicemen in fact) was recognized and identified by several parameters, including a group photo in front of the barracks in Borzoi village (the distinctive feature – one-storey Soviet-style barracks with concrete and brick masonry work of the former 291st motorized rifle regiment).
- Yaroslav Stryapkov (profile archive, album archive, friend list archive) – a contract serviceman of the 8th mountain brigade. Stryapkov’s photo album has a set of pictures taken in Donbas and uploaded in July, 2015. The photos from Chechnya uploaded in March, 2014 are there as well. The most remarkable photo was uploaded on August 6, 2015, and showed his brothers-in-arms in front of the mentioned above barracks – our character No.2 Rustam Kurmukov and character No.3 Vladimir Kislyakov whoes albums contained the same photos from Borzoi (uploaded, possibly, after returning from their combat mission in Luhansk Oblast, Ukraine).
2. Rustam Kurmukov (profile archive, album archive, friend list archive) – a contract serviceman of the 8th mountain brigade. The Kurmukov’s profile and photo album seems to be cleaned up: it contains pictures from his ‘Novorossiya’ life, pictures of his colleagues from the 8th brigade and his new friends from ‘Novorossiya’. But you can also see a photo of the Chechnya barracks and a shot of his military specialty from his military ID – VUS 100 915 A (100 – VUS code for riflemen, 915 – position code for rifleman, A – ground forces of Russia).
3. Vladimir Kislyakov (profile archive, album archive, friend list archive) – a contract serviceman of the 8th mountain brigade. His photo album contains just several ‘Novorossiya’ militant style pictures and also the August photos in front of the barracks in Chechnya.
The contact lists of our figurants give us also other Russian servicemen who mask as ‘volunteer’-militants – their identification is in progress.
In addition to the information above we represent you with a set of screenshots of VKontakte group BORZOI, 291st regiment, 8th brigade, unit 44822 and 16544:
- They mourn some killed Ruslan already on the first group’s page, on August 16, 2015 – “Dmitri Sumenkov – We grieve together with you, guys. Damn War“
The other topics of this group are informative not less than the previous one.
- You can find a conversation between the 8th brigade’s servicemen relatives in the “phone No. of unit 16544” topic of “Discussions” section from August, 2014. According to them the brigade was in a combat mission, during which Maks Chaptykov‘s brother was killed.
- There is an interesting message from Aleksandr Tolstopyatenko, a previous candidate for contract service in this military unit (section “Discussions”, topic “Folks, describe please how the service goes here. What are pros and cons 🙂” from June 18, 2015): “A guy resigns after serving 2 contract terms. He is trying to get a vacation, since he could not do that last year because of being in Ukraine. But the service is over and nobody gives a shit about him. I wanted to serve here, but when I arrived and saw all that shit – the will to serve has gone. I’m trying to resign for a week already. They treat you as a shit, accommodation and food are lousy. But the military enlistment center says it’s great here. But none of the soldiers or officers said he was satisfied. Everybody is dissatisfied. The local servicemen [Chechenians] do not perform duties. 50% are Kazakhs and Kalmyks, 30% are from Caucasus, not more than 20% are Russians who in fact carry out responsibilities (and mostly the same guys). The religion seems to stop others to do the job, I guess. The folks say that being at the training site s*cks – they sit there for a half a year without any extra charge“.
Andruha Samoilenko: “I do not know the exact unit. But they promise triple salary. Can you give me your phone number to talk about the service?”
Anatoliy Osipov: “The triple salary is confirmed. I am not in brigade right now – resigned a week ago due to disability!”
Andruha Samoilenko: “Are there any combat actions?”
Anatoliy Osipov: “Yeap, I lost my arm there!”
Andruha Samoilenko: “F*ck… have you lost a lot of guys?”
Anatoliy Osipov: “That took place. Bro, I do not know what to advise you, but frankly speaking I wish you to serve in Russia, not in Caucasus!”
P.S: It seems to be an irony of the fate, but the introduction to the “Do not feel pity for us…” from the video clip published on the 8th brigade’s page is pretty realistic about the destiny of the disabled Osipov and his killed brothers-in-arms who obeyed the criminal orders of the Russian command. You should not be sorry about them because they were not sorry about anyone. The servicemen of the 8th mountain brigade have fought, but have not tasted the victory. All the Russian occupants, no matter in Ukraine or Georgia, await the fate to die in oblivion or to live with disability without a possibility to boast with a medal from the war which never happened.
InformNapalm thanks the friends and colleagues from the ‘Mirotvorets‘ [Peacemaker] center for the provided information about the 3 persons above.
Let us remind you that the 8th brigade has been mentioned a lot in our articles:
- Russian 8th mountain motorized rifle brigade in Ukraine September 22, 2014
- The 8th brigade’s scout unit at the Ukrainian border (in Russian) October 8, 2014
- “Show Must Go On”, or “foreplay” (in Russian) October 30, 2014
- Medal for Bravery (in Russian) December 9, 2014
- The Russian 8th Motorized Rifle Brigade as Part of the “People’s Militia” of LNR July 17, 2015