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The Russian independent on the connection between the education system and the war crimes, and how Russian parents have come to denounce their children for lack of patriotism

Policemen inspect bodies of locals, a mother and son, which were killed by Russian soldiers as they stayed in Vablya village not far from Kyiv, Ukraine, 14 April 2022.
©EPA-EFE/SERGEY DOLZHENKO ATTENTION  |   Policemen inspect bodies of locals, a mother and son, which were killed by Russian soldiers as they stayed in Vablya village not far from Kyiv, Ukraine, 14 April 2022.

The crimes, torture and robberies committed by the Russian military are the result of a deficient education system but also of social issues neglected by the authorities, writes the independent Russian press, which continues to work despite the fact that it is almost banned in Russia. Veridica has found an article about how the Russians have come to denounce those who do not share the official version about the war, as well as two interviews, one about Putin's regime, the other about the decline of the Russian oil industry due to sanctions.

THE INSIDER: Executioners’ education. How the Russian education system has bred assassins, robbers and sadists

The atrocities committed against the civilian population in Borodyanka, Bucha, Mariupol and other cities and towns in Ukraine shocked many: few expected Russian soldiers and officers to act so cruelly. However, their actions are not surprising - the family, the school and the army in Russia have become a system of violence, writes THE INSIDER.

There is no doubt about the systemic nature of war crimes, following the publication by RIA Novosti of the manifesto  on the Ukrainian genocide, the Russian military command admitting that hundreds of people were executed in civilian clothes (only in Mariupol) and a lot of interceptions made public. However, neither the ideological indoctrination nor the Kremlin's assumed choice to kill the civilian population can fully explain these crimes. After all, even the military can act by free will and, like any human being, must be aware of the laws and be guided by ethical, professional, but also generally human norms. And if we see that these limits are being violated, we should take into account not only the political course, but also the institutional and social peculiarities of the Russian armed forces.

The decline of military education

One of the key factors contributing to the fact that the Russian army tends to quickly turn into a gang of robbers and rapists fighting the civilian population is the quality of the corps of officers. For decades, since the time of the USSR, it has been very uneven in terms of the different types and categories of military forces, a consequence of the power’s distrust  in its own army. In post-Soviet Russia, this mistrust has grown deeper - after two attempted coups involving the army, in 1991 and 1993, and the relatively high popularity of Army Generals Alexandr Lebed and Lev Rohlin in society. As a result, the Kremlin has always been faced with a dilemma: how to make Russian officers fight more effectively and, at the same time, not admit their excessive influence and involvement in politics within an authoritarian administration. […]

Country boys

A separate factor is the system of recruiting soldiers for the ground and airborne troops, which are extremely important on the battlefield. Traditionally, for the ground troops, which reach about 270-280 thousand people, the intellectual, moral and psychological requirements are minimal. This is explained by the specifics of the recruitment system. The most trained, evolved, adequate or simply clever recruits are incorporated into the fleet, the strategic and air missile troops, among which the military are also recruited by contract.

The ground troops are content with what is left, being in turn forced to classify their recruits. The most capable are taken in missile, artillery, anti-aircraft and control and transmission units. Thus, in the regular units of motorized infantry, there are less brilliant young people, whose level of education and culture is often unsatisfactory. This level is also directly related to where the new recruits come from. Russia's education system has long been deteriorating at institutional level. […] In small towns and villages, its problems are particularly acute, access to cultural institutions is lacking or very limited and one can't say that such localities are flourishing and prosperous. This also applies to the poor republics of Siberia and the Caucasus. […]

Family, school, army: sources of violence

Violence in Russian families, in school and in the army is a third fundamental social source of the crimes committed by Russian military. Russian families often foster a vicious circle of physical and psychological violence of some members over others, aggravated by poor communication. Thus, young people are raised in conditions close to anomia, in a background where social and cultural ties are seriously damaged. The line between the norm and the crime is often unclear to them.

The same thing happens in the Russian schools, except that psychological violence is the one prevailing there. […]

MEDIAZONA: He denounced his daughter. Russians report neighbors, colleagues and even their children to the police if their views on the war do not coincide with the official ones

Since the beginning of the war, Russians have been increasingly denouncing each other. People complain to the police about neighbors whose balconies are decorated with yellow-blue ribbons, they inform the police about colleagues who do not respect the Z sign, and some even report their own children, writes MEDIAZONA.

“ - Have you detained my daughter?

  • Who?
  • My daughter.... you have her, don’t you?
  • Detain her for what? We only know that you saw on the internet somewhere some calls... to what?
  • I mean...killing Russians is ok?
  • Well, calls. Do we have to interrogate you, see what you actually saw? Your daughter is instigating, or what?

This is the telephone conversation between a policeman and a 49-year-old man from Reutov, Timur Halitov, which took place on April 10. In the morning, he went to the police station and turned his daughter, Elmira, stating that she was “instigating to the killing of Russians” […]

Elmira Halitova is 21 years old, a student of the Higher School of Economics, has a Telegram channel “Podpolie” and streams on Twitch, where she talks about politics and social life in Russia. Elmira says she supports the opposition, but has not urged anyone to “kill Russians”. […]

Since the beginning of the war in Ukraine, many Russians have reported to the police people who do not share the same view about the causes and reasons for the invasion of the neighboring country. The best-known case is the one in Penza, where eighth-graders reported their English teacher Irina Ghen. During class, the teacher explained to a student why she would not be able to compete in the Czech Republic. “As long as Russia does not behave civilly, this will continue”, she said. “They wanted to get to Kyiv, to overthrow the government of a sovereign state, a sovereign government. We have a totalitarian regime. Any form of dissidence is considered a crime. We will all be condemned for 15 years. I too will be sentenced to 15 years”. Teacher Irina Ghen is being investigated for spreading “fake news” about the Russian army, based on the audio recording sent to the police by her own students. […]

Since March, teachers in Russian schools must condemn any call for “anti-war” action and tell students the arguments used by Vladimir Putin in his speech about the causes of the “special military operation” against Ukraine. Teachers who disagree with this policy risk being fired. For example, in Astrakhan, math teacher Elena Babeikova lost her job because one of the students complained about “political talk” in her class.

The rhetoric about Russia's enemies in the war context has become much more aggressive. In mid-March, President Vladimir Putin spoke of “traitors to the nation” […]

MEDUZA: Painter Elena Osipova, aged 76, has been protesting against the Russian authorities for two decades. She has been detained several times at rallies, but has never given up. She told MEDUZA what she thinks about the war in Ukraine and society’s indifference.

Elena Osipova is called “Petersburg’s conscience”.  For 20 years she has been protesting against wars and the Russian authorities. A former art teacher, she taught children to draw until she retired, and now she's out in the city center with anti-war signs. In March 2022, she was detained several times. Images of E. Osipova and the OMON police officers, on March 2, had a big resonance on social media. MEDUZA talked with the artist about protests, art, authorities and the future of Russia. Here's what she said:

“I took to the streets with no hope, but people encouraged and inspired me."

“On February 24, in the middle of the night, a journalist called asking for my opinion on what had happened. I replied that the Russian Führer had started the “Anschluss” and that I knew that was coming.  Since 2014, it has been clear to me what this will lead to (Vladimir Putin's policy towards Ukraine). Most of my anti-war signs were made then. No one, however, thought that such a thing would really happen. That day, I came out with a sign that read: “O mania! O mummy! Burn down, Russia! Madness, madness you create!” These are lyrics by Marina Tsvetaeva. Only that she wrote about Germany, and I wrote about Russia. I made this sign after the assassination of Boris Nemtsov (February 27, 2015).

On the 24th I went out to protest without hope, but people gave me strength and inspired me. There were many on the street that day. I was standing next to the monument of Catherine II, and they were running on Nevsky Boulevard, running away from the police and shouting “No to war!”.  Some men were weeping and asking, “What can we do? How can we help Ukraine?” This encouraged me. I saw that many people did not agree with Russia's actions in Ukraine”.  […]

ROSBALT: “Some wells will be closed for good”

Russia will have to cut down on its oil and gas production, which could lead to massive layoffs in this area, said expert Mikhail Krutihin in an interview with ROSBALT.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) has forecast a significant drop in oil extraction in Russia over the next two months due to the sanctions imposed on Moscow following the launch of its military operation in Ukraine. In April, a reduction of one and a half million barrels per day is expected, which will grow to three million by May. For the same reasons, the production of Russian natural gas could be reduced.

The biggest traders have already announced that they intend to reduce Russian oil purchases starting May 15 due to the financial market restrictions imposed by the EU on the Russian Federation. […]

- How will this affect the Russian economy?

- If we're talking about oil, we're going to have to close down wells. That’s for sure. Now there are two forecasts. According to OPEC experts, by the end of this year, the extraction of Russian oil will be reduced by 26 million tons or by more than 500 thousand barrels per day. But there are other predictions, which say that we could lose up to 75-150 million tons of oil annually (in 2021 Russia extracted 524 million tons of oil).- What solution do we have in this case? Are we really shutting in the wells?- What else can we do? We do not have enough storage capacity for either oil or gas. Respectively, we will have to shut in some wells and close them forever. The peculiarity of the Russian oil industry is that if a well closes, it is liquidated. In most cases it cannot be reopened, and if someone wants to, they will have to drill a new one next to it.- What does this mean at macro level?- That means that Russia will lose its status of “energy power” it once claimed it had. Moreover, massive layoffs will start in production and maintenance companies. Experts have already assessed this situation. In the gas industry alone, at Gazprom and related companies, one and a half million people will be made redundant.

 

Tags: Russia , Vladimir Putin , War in Ukraine
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