The Kremlin claims that Ukrainian “saboteurs” are said to have carried out an operation on Russian territory. The FSB presents evidence. But that only raises more questions. An expert draws attention to the details.
What happened in the Russian city of Bryansk on Thursday morning? According to Kremlin propaganda, Ukrainian “saboteurs” entered Russian territory to spread fear and terror. After numerous inconsistencies and contradictory information, the following account was now agreed: “Nationalists” had distributed mines in two villages near the Ukrainian border, fired on civilian cars, killed two men and injured a boy.
On Friday, the Russian domestic secret service FSB presented alleged evidence of the “saboteurs’ operation”: the two cars that are said to have been shot at. But many of the details that can be seen on the corresponding recordings do not match the depiction of what is happening and raise many questions.
The first car is a blue Zhiguli, which appears to have been shot at from all sides. “The car has been targeted very skillfully from different points of view,” summarized automotive expert Sergei Aslanyan in one. “There are bullet holes everywhere: in the front, in the back, on the sides, in the windows. The license plate has been ripped off. So it’s impossible to tell what kind of car it is. If there are any survivors in this village, I’d like them ask: “Do you even know who owns the car? Have you seen it before?” he remarked sarcastically.
“In any case, I wonder if anyone lives in this village at all. And if so, why these people have not shown up so far – except for the ten-year-old boy, who is of course a hero,” Aslanjan added mockingly.
Just a “hero” and two nameless bodies
We’re talking about “Young Fjodr,” as propaganda immediately dubbed him and elevated him to the status of a hero. He is said to have been injured in the blue Shuguli. And despite his injury, rescued two younger girls who are said to have been in the car with him. However, the driver of the car is said to have been killed.
A collapsed body can be seen in the FSB recordings. Whether it is a dead person or a dummy cannot be determined. Aslanjan does not rule out the possibility that a dead person was obtained from a morgue or that someone was actually killed. “Russia shows no mercy in this sense. If someone has to be killed for the sake of credibility, then they will be killed.”
Spotlessly clean in the middle of the mud
A body can also be seen at the wheel in the second car, which is supposed to serve as evidence. However, no further details can be found. The red Lada Niwa has no bullet holes.
But what is striking about both cars is their cleanliness. “Have they been washed beforehand? Or is everything so dry in spring, at the time of the rasputiza, that the condition is immaculate?” the expert wonders. In Russia, Rasputitsa is the time in spring and autumn when the streets turn to mud due to snowmelt or autumn rains.
However, the two cars on display look like they just rolled out of the car wash. You can’t even see dirt on the wheels or the hubcaps – although the streets are covered in mud.
“Not even a three” for the FSB
“A very unsuccessful job. The degradation of Russia’s state institutes extends in all directions,” is Aslanyan’s verdict. “Not even a three”, he would give for this work.
The appearance of the men who claimed responsibility for the operation also raises many questions. No sooner had Vladimir Putin held “terrorists” responsible for the alleged acts of sabotage last Thursday than the so-called “Russian Volunteer Corps” took responsibility for what happened.
“Saboteurs” as if peeled from the egg
The men can be seen in uniform and camouflage clothing. They wear yellow bandages on their arms. “It is essential for a saboteur to identify himself,” laughs Aslanjan, formulating the concerns that many experts have already expressed. “It is imperative that you identify yourself with a yellow ribbon. So that everyone knows that you are a Ukrainian saboteur.”
“Clean shoes, clean suits and machine guns that don’t use NATO ammunition,” Aslanjan points out another interesting detail. Since Thursday, Kremlin propaganda has been emphasizing that “Young Fedr” was wounded with a NATO bullet. However, the men of the so-called “Russian Volunteer Corps” carry Kalashnikovs, which rarely use NATO ammunition. “Clowns in perfectly white suits,” was Aslanjan’s verdict.
And another question arises that is of central importance: What are saboteurs supposed to have been doing in an area that offers no military targets whatsoever? Shooting at passing cars?
I have been working in the news industry for over 6 years, first as a reporter and now as an editor. I have covered politics extensively, and my work has appeared in major newspapers and online news outlets around the world. In addition to my writing, I also contribute regularly to 24 Hours World.