August 15, 2000 |
"Picture yourself: You're in this boat on the bottom of the ocean," said Clayton Decker, who has been there, with the oxygen running out, watching the taut faces of friends who know they might die. Some just give up and crawl into their bunks. "You just go to sleep, and it's an easy death. You kind of go into a coma. They say you don't even get dizzy." Decker lived through it 56 years ago, in a crippled U.S. submarine off China during World War II.
August 12, 2000 |
President Vladimir V. Putin attacked one of Russia's most intractable problems Friday with a pledge to carry out a reform of the military that may decide the future shape of the country's nuclear weapons. The painful issue of restructuring the military sparked a bitter public row among Russia's top brass last month. But Putin told the powerful Security Council in a four-hour meeting Friday that it was time to end the argument.
July 22, 2000 |
A helicopter crashed minutes after takeoff from a military airfield in northern Russia on Friday, killing 19 airmen, the air force said. The helicopter was carrying 16 parachutists and three crewmen on a training flight in the region of Levashovo, just north of St. Petersburg, said Yuri Drobyshevsky, a spokesman for the air force. Everyone on board was killed, he said.
June 28, 2000 |
When Maj. Gen. Konstantin Svidersky, commander of a strategic missile base in Siberia, learned that the security of his base was under threat, he did what any commander would do: He sent out his troops to eliminate the threat. The target? Four electric substations. The enemy? The local electric company, which had threatened to cut off power. Heavily armed commandos stormed the substations in Siberia's southern Altai region two weeks ago and forced out the employees at gunpoint.
May 12, 2000 |
In the first major attack outside the breakaway republic in months, rebel gunmen ambushed a Russian troop convoy Thursday in an area west of Chechnya, killing 18 soldiers, the military said. Federal officials warned that the raid signaled the Chechens' intention to expand their fight to other Russian territories, and they urged more police control over regions bordering Chechnya.
May 9, 2000 |
Russian forces claimed Monday to have killed 20 Chechen guerrillas but lost a reconnaissance jet, possibly to rebel fire. The insurgents were killed in artillery and airstrikes, the military claimed. Russian forces are trying to rout Chechen rebels from mountain strongholds, but sniping and hit-and-run attacks continue. A Russian Su-24MR plane disappeared from radar screens during bad weather Sunday over Chechnya, and military officials said it may have been shot down.
May 2, 2000 |
Federal forces said Monday that they had found the bodies of nine Russian soldiers allegedly captured and executed by rebels in Chechnya after an ambush that undercut Moscow's claims that the insurgents were near defeat. The nine soldiers had been listed as missing after their Interior Ministry paramilitary unit was trapped in a rebel ambush March 29. The military command said Monday that the men were initially taken prisoner and later shot.
April 14, 2000 |
Before the war in Chechnya began last fall, truck driver Rakhman Usmanov had to pay local warlords for the right to drive his tanker truck on the highway and deliver oil to a local refinery. Today, with Russian forces occupying most of the rebellious republic, one thing has changed: Now he pays Russian commanders for the right to drive his truck and make oil deliveries. "The only difference is that we have to pay the Russian troops at checkpoints," Usmanov said.
April 9, 2000 |
Police arrested a 19-year-old Russian conscript on suspicion that he killed eight soldiers on a military train in southern Russia, news agencies said. Oleg Dovshenko was arrested at a train station in the Penza region, where he had been called up by the army, the Interfax news agency said. Dovshenko and the dead soldiers had been assigned to guard the train, which carried military hardware. Seven of the victims were shot at close range.
April 5, 2000 |
The United Nations' top human rights official, saying she was "shocked and appalled" by accounts of Russian atrocities in Chechnya, called on the Russian government Tuesday to establish an independent commission to investigate alleged human rights violations in the separatist republic.