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Old 03-16-2007   #1
bismark17
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Default Terror at Beslan

I was fortunate to attend some great training yesterday put on by John Giduck. He is the author of a great book, Terror at Beslan that should be mandatory reading for anyone in L.E. or concerned with Security. His presentation was outstanding and very relevant to my day-to-day job as a Crime Analyst. He packed a great deal of information into a 1 day course and didn’t just re-hash what was in the book but built upon it. Anyone with an opportunity to attend his training should jump on it. You will not be disappointed.

http://www.antiterrorconsultants.org/training_acad.htm is a link to his company.

I have no affiliation with his company!
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Old 03-19-2007   #2
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Interesting...

I wonder what was influence of Beslan on SWAT/HRT units TTPs'. My masters' thesis [I've just started writing] will be devoted mostly Polish LE special units after 1990 ,but I belive that Beslan and Dubrovka - large, complicated hostage situation mark bing change in ways how hostage situations should be dealt

Regards,
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Old 03-20-2007   #3
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Giduck has been milking that cow for a long time. Those who are better qualified to critique the event don't do the training circuit gig. There are also a few issues with his bio. Not that his piece is worthless, but him and his work needs to be taken with a grain of salt.
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Old 03-20-2007   #4
Sarajevo071
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I just wonder, do John Giduck mentioning how afoul Russian SF and police performed (with absolutely no regards for life of they own civilians) and that Russian own inquiry blamed Russian “volunteers” and SF for attack and some killings? Russian forces performances in this siege and that in NorDost Theater is just amazingly bad…
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Old 03-20-2007   #5
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Default “Nord-Ost” - Investigation Unfinished

Quote:
“Nord-Ost” - Investigation Unfinished

The book was published with assistance from “Terrorism Victims Support Fund”
Non-Commercial Organization.
Moscow, April 26, 2006


INTRODUCTION
“The Committee admits the seriousness of the situation with hostages and cannot help being concerned about the results of rescue operation in Dubrovka Theater. The Committee notes that various attempts to investigate the situation are sill being made, but it must express its concern about the absence of independent and unbiased estimation of the facts related to the kind of medical care given to hostages after their release, and to the killing of persons who had captured the hostages. The Committee appealed to the member-state [Russia] to ensure independent and thorough investigation into the circumstances of the rescue operation in Dubrovka and have its results published, and, if required, to initiate criminal proceedings and pay compensation to the victims and their family members”
(extract from the Statement of the UN Human Rights Committee approved at its 79th session, October 2003).



This report is related to one of the most tragic events in the history of present-day Russia – the hostage taking at Theatrical Center in Dubrovka (TC) in the city of Moscow.

The authors’ purport is not to exculpate the terrorists - their guilt is obvious and undisputable. Nevertheless, this tragedy has once again revealed the attitude on the part of the Russian authorities towards human rights both in the course of the rescue operation, and in the way how investigation into the terrorist act was held, as well as in the course of court proceedings on cases initiated by the injured and affected persons in defense of their rights and interests.

The purpose of this report is to sum up the data resulting from the examination of criminal case documents related to this terrorist attack which were made available to the authors, and testimonies given by the victims, witnesses of this event, human rights activists and journalists.

The goal of the authors was to show the results they got after summarizing factual material, to analyze the validity of various versions of grounds for the special operation, to give legal opinion on the performance of the authorities in the course of the operation, and to let the readers know the most significant, from the authors’ point of view, opinions and estimates related to those events.

...

Microsoft Word Document (33 Pages)
http://pravdabeslana.ru/nordost/dokleng.doc
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Old 03-20-2007   #6
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What "Special Forces" do You mean?
There was only 40 of them - advisors sent from Alpha, Vympiel and Vitiaz units. All others were soldiers form infantry, or militia officers, or simply armed citizens of Bieslan (mostly hostages' relatives).
10 operators were killed in action, mostly when they were trying to pull the children out of gym...
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Old 03-20-2007   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jedburgh View Post
Giduck has been milking that cow for a long time. Those who are better qualified to critique the event don't do the training circuit gig. There are also a few issues with his bio. Not that his piece is worthless, but him and his work needs to be taken with a grain of salt.
Are there better open sources available?
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Old 03-20-2007   #8
Stan
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Default And if they didn't go in, then what compensation ?

Hey Sarajevo !

Quote:
The Committee appealed to the member-state [Russia] to ensure independent and thorough investigation into the circumstances of the rescue operation in Dubrovka and have its results published, and, if required, to initiate criminal proceedings and pay compensation to the victims and their family members”
I don't disagree with the fact that the operation was handled inappropriately and the innocent victims suffered a great deal. The government sent her troops in and expected results. Soldiers they were. Yes, gas is a bit harsh, but they used what they had and I am sure they were instructed to do so. If they never went in and all the victims were later killed, the government would still be at fault. Seems there was no alternative. Or was there ?

The Estonians reaction was neutral. Actually, most said 'if they gas their own, so what ?'

Hard to argue that one !

Last edited by Stan; 03-20-2007 at 10:12 PM.
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Old 03-20-2007   #9
Robal2pl
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The gas was used to prevent detonation of explosives carried by "Black Widows" (Chechen version of female suicide bombers). The gas wasn't to kill, but to incapitate them give some time to operators. All hostages were alive when the building was seized by SF. They started dying when they were transported to the hospitals. All medical support totally failed - not the CT operation.
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Old 03-21-2007   #10
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Couple of points. It was not a gas. It was a powerful narcotic used in medicine as an anesthesia delivered in an aerosol form to increase the rapid reaction in order to incapacitate the terrorist. Robal2pl is dead on when he said It was the medical personnel. By not having enough medication on hand to bring them back once they had been put under. If the medical personnel had done this it would have ended up as one of the best mass HRT's ever done.

Below is a link that discusses this operation along with others of this kind.

"Offensive use of chemical technologies by US Special Operations in GWOT"

http://www.au.af.mil/au/aul/aupress/.../Text/mp37.pdf
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Old 03-21-2007   #11
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Ok, i got Your point.
But this situation was more complicated that this what can be found in some scources, including the one you mention.
On the auditorium, when suicide bombers were located, assault teams were shooting them in heads. More, there were some places where aerosol did not reach (couple of hostages tried to escape on their own)
But on the other places in the buliding (higher ones - narcotic was appiled only in lower ones) there was a series of heavy gunfights, even MGs and genade launchers were used.
There is a couple of others elements - like planning and executing entire operation almost without radio communictaions (all channels and frequencies were jammed to prevent remote detonation of explosives)
So form the tactical point of viev, it was one of the best HR operations.
Russians spent a lot of time, after crisises in Budionnovsk and Piervomaiskoie, preparing for such scenario.

Had there been field hospital deployed,and evacuation routes to other hospitals cleadred, there would be many less killed.
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Old 03-21-2007   #12
Sarajevo071
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I am sorry for the delay here.

Now, when I stop laughing on this outrages comment, I will be “rude” and ask you to read something that’s is NOT written by official Russian military or police-or they cronies-before claiming things like this and responding to my post with facts!

Example -that document that I posted here…

Also (my thanks to slapout9 for posting this document) you can read that where on page 15 is stated:

Quote:
“The Moscow public health department announced that many of the hostages suffocated as a direct result of the fentanyl. Of the 128 hostages reported killed, only ONE was shot by the terrorists—the others died due to the effects of the aerosol.”
But Robal2pl say on this:
Quote:
“So form the tactical point of viev, it was one of the best HR operations.”
What!?

Again:

Quote:
“Doctors at the hospitals were never informed of the chemical agent used and could not properly diagnose any of the victims.”
So, when Robal2pl and slapout9 claim that is medical personnel fault that hostages died, one need to say that is NOT true! Especially when one know that paramedics was stopped by police on the way to the theater for 10-15min (stated in document I posted).

Idea to blame help, which was not informed and also delayed, instead of those who actually pump aerosol agent is at least irresponsible.

My point of how BAD and irresponsible Russian forces are and how low concern do they have for they own civilians is again confirmed on page 16 of that report where is said:

Quote:
“Irregardless of the large numbers of hostages involved in this situation, FSB Al’fa’s intent of using a nonlethal agent was LESS focused on their rescue and more so on killing the Chechen terrorists.

This vendetta stemmed from past encounters when Chechen fighters defeated the elite unit in hostage-taking scenarios…”
Simply put, it was Russian Al’fa vendetta against Chechen fighters and CIVILIANS paid price.

Quote:
“Urine and blood samples from several of the German hostages examined by a German toxicology professor showed an EXTREMELY high concentration of anesthetics.

Loss of consciousness from fentanyl occurs at the lowest effective dose—for 50 percent of a given population, around .011 milligram (mg) per kilogram (kg) of body weight.

The lethal dose of fentanyl for 50 percent of a given population occurs at 3.1 mg per kg of body weight.

Although there are no facts available showing how much fentanyl was used
in the raid, it is safe to assume that a high concentration was required to effectively render everyone unconscious.

Additionally, the FSB Al’fa had no prior training in administering calmative agents in this type of environment, implying that hostage safety was NOT a high priority.

…effects of using this unconventional method (fentanyl) killed 50 times more of FSB Al’fa’s own people than did the hostage takers.”
Again…

IF Russians didn’t use leather dose of that agent MANY civilians would live.

IF Russians wanted to secure hostages safety they will drag negotiations and be concentrated on RELEASE of hostages instead of killing Chechens.

Yes… “Great” tactical decision and “the best” HR operations.

Almost “good” like using tanks and artillery in hostage rescue operation in Pervomaiskaya, when even hostages start running away with they Chechen captures AWAY from Russian “liberators” and they artillery fire. Same with Budyonnovsk.

IF you read document I posted here you will find way different (official) picture that you seam to have. This report coming from Russian sources and people PERSONALLY involved in crisis and they you will see how much you are wrong…

They you can read that NO hostages were shoot and NO one tried to escape prior to attack (like you just say)!

Russian authorities LIED in Theater siege. They lied in Beslan to. And that was my whole point… They lied and they were to blame for ALL butchered rescue. But, why to listen me!? Just read commission reports from Moscow and Beslan and listen Russian people accusing Russian government, police and army.

Also I advice you to read interviews with Chechen commanders posted here and learn more about what happened in Pervomaiskaya and Budyonnovsk.
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Old 03-21-2007   #13
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Hi Sarajevo, I had a problem downloading the document you posted yesterday so I did not read it. My fault completely. I have now downloaded and printed out a copy. I will read it and respond later.
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Old 03-21-2007   #14
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There is one matter : we seem to talk about two things.

The assault itself is one matter - do some research on hostage situations and you'll see how difficult Nod-Ost was. Show me another operations where 417 operators magaged to prevent blowing entire building up and killing hostages (Chenens planned to execute hostages - that's the way the decision was made).
The lack of medical support is other problem, we all know that it was done wrong.
If You and others say that Russian wanted simply "kill'em all" - they colud do this at once when they arrived.
Piervomayskaya and Budionnovsk. There wasn't even CT operations - simply, there was a total chaos with generals from all branches, MPs, goverment officials and finally Alpha and Vitizaz wich commanders' arguments noone wanted to listen...Of course media after in course and after those events were full of "experts" who blamed Spetsnaz - maube because it sounds good in TV...and it couldn't harm one politican or another
Alpha's vendetta...sorry but I don't buy it. Simply.
Authorites lied (Cynic would add - wich one never lie?) but, simply to be fair one cannot tell simply "all was wrong, and thay's all".
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Old 03-21-2007   #15
Sarajevo071
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slapout9 View Post
Hi Sarajevo, I had a problem downloading the document you posted yesterday so I did not read it. My fault completely. I have now downloaded and printed out a copy. I will read it and respond later.
Np. Slapout9.

Just another look on same theme but from non-official side and some better details, I believe.
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Old 03-21-2007   #16
Sarajevo071
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robal2pl View Post
There is one matter : we seem to talk about two things.

The assault itself is one matter - do some research on hostage situations and you'll see how difficult Nod-Ost was. Show me another operations where 417 operators magaged to prevent blowing entire building up and killing hostages (Chenens planned to execute hostages - that's the way the decision was made).
The lack of medical support is other problem, we all know that it was done wrong.
If You and others say that Russian wanted simply "kill'em all" - they colud do this at once when they arrived.
Piervomayskaya and Budionnovsk. There wasn't even CT operations - simply, there was a total chaos with generals from all branches, MPs, goverment officials and finally Alpha and Vitizaz wich commanders' arguments noone wanted to listen...Of course media after in course and after those events were full of "experts" who blamed Spetsnaz - maube because it sounds good in TV...and it couldn't harm one politican or another
Alpha's vendetta...sorry but I don't buy it. Simply.
Authorites lied (Cynic would add - wich one never lie?) but, simply to be fair one cannot tell simply "all was wrong, and thay's all".
But… Seams to me you still didn’t read that Doc. Please do. They are saying things there about explosives and real intentions of hostage takers.

Like you can see, I am avoiding to say my own opinion (it just my opinion and everyone have one) but rather using they (people who was there) words.

I mention Pervomaiskaya and Budyonnovsk like another example of careless Russian attitude toward they own civilians… I can find you more examples from war in Grozny.

I don’t intend to change your opinion about Russians. Just wanted to give you answer why I am thinking this way. I have my answers, proofs and I believe that they are truthful.

That’s all.


cheers
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Old 03-21-2007   #17
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Hi Sarajevo !

Quote:
3.2.1. Refusal to negotiate so as to minimize the number of hostages

To justify the use of force to resolve the situation, the authorities later asserted that the terrorists had put forward technically impossible terms. However, it is evident from the investigation materials that the problems arose for the sole reason that no authorized persons or professional negotiators had been invited to the process.
I often wondered, do the Russians have professional negotiators for such law enforcement situations ?

They have in the past always employed their military assets, not their police. I understand the reasons and I have nothing against that scenario, but military forces are not normally trained for hostage negotiations. This was a strike team and I doubt negotiations were ever part of the original equation.

Quote:
3.2.2. Use of a "special means" without estimation of its effect on human life and without necessary medical aid facilities

As has been said above, special services used a special agent “to neutralize terrorists” in the situation that made it impossible to provide immediate medical aid and control individual dosage each hostage received.
I agree, the government authorized the use of this 'special agent' without considering the after affects and what would be needed immediately for the victims. But again, they employed special operations forces who probably had no intention nor idea what the outcome would require. Their concern was the terrorists IMHO !

What do ya think ?

Regards, Stan
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Old 03-22-2007   #18
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Default The Report Came To The Same Conclusion

Hi Guys, Just finished reading the report. Here is a quote form the report.

3.2.3 Organization of Medical Aid from the second paragraph

According to the conclusion made by the Commission, the excessive number of victims was caused by the negligence of officials responsible for providing medical aid to the injured.




I think this is the same conclusion that I and Robal2pl came to. The Commission was called the "Union of Right Forces" it included medical,counter terror, and eyewitnesses to the rescue attempted.
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Old 03-22-2007   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stan Reber View Post
Hi Sarajevo !
I often wondered, do the Russians have professional negotiators for such law enforcement situations ?

They have in the past always employed their military assets, not their police. I understand the reasons and I have nothing against that scenario, but military forces are not normally trained for hostage negotiations. This was a strike team and I doubt negotiations were ever part of the original equation.
Helo Stan

I have no clue about they negotiators. I would like to think they do, but. Even in Beslan, going in SCHOOL military and SF used flamethrowers and tank fire!? I would think you don't need to have train negotiators to tell you not to fire tank rounds on the school. Go in tactical with overwhelming force and take them down. Simple.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stan Reber View Post
I agree, the government authorized the use of this 'special agent' without considering the after affects and what would be needed immediately for the victims. But again, they employed special operations forces who probably had no intention nor idea what the outcome would require. Their concern was the terrorists IMHO !
Exactly my (humble) opinion. No much regard for the civilians. I could be wrong, but don't they supposed to save civilian life and rescue hostages!? I mean they are Hostage Rescue teams, right?
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Old 03-22-2007   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slapout9 View Post
Hi Guys, Just finished reading the report. Here is a quote form the report.

3.2.3 Organization of Medical Aid from the second paragraph

According to the conclusion made by the Commission, the excessive number of victims was caused by the negligence of officials responsible for providing medical aid to the injured.


I think this is the same conclusion that I and Robal2pl came to. The Commission was called the "Union of Right Forces" it included medical,counter terror, and eyewitnesses to the rescue attempted.
And I was looking on:

3.2.2. Use of a "special means" without estimation of its effect on human life and without necessary medical aid facilities

3.3.1. Incompleteness of investigation and discrepancies in the statements made by Public Prosecutor’s Office

3.3.2. Falsification of the forensic medical examination of the reasons of death of hostages


Hm. OK. I understand what you saying and I do agree that they weren’t ready. But my point is that they could not be ready since they didn’t know what is going on, when, which agent is used, how much (Alfa used to much), and when they start coming on scene some of them was stopped and delayed, organization of triage was non-existent for the same reasons… If you watch that BBC documentary “Terror in Moscow”, you can hear narrator saying something like:

“There was not enough stretches or doctors. Sleeping hostages all ready fighting for breath was carried out with heads rolled back, arms and legs faced up in the air. Dozens simple choked on they own vomit… Or swallow they tongs. They were plenty of antidotes to the gas, but too few medics to give a jabs. Hostages died in they seats, on the front steps of the theater on the floor of the city buses that were sent to ferry them to the hospitals…” (You just need to see how they soldiers carried them out, dragging or over the shoulders and stacking them up outside, and you will understand.)

See, for me those who have tactical command, organizational responsibilities and power of decision and to order other what to do, where to be and how to behave are responsible! In my mind, you can not blame fireman for coming to late to extinguish the fire and paramedics to save people who got burned in house where you started the fire. By the law and by natural order of things, you are to blame. Not them. But, I could be wrong again.

Instead to wait, organize everything, negotiate in meantime, give them some and get some people out. Remember, Chechens did not kill anyone there and all the time they were saying that they want to talk. Those two hostages was shoot by accident and when they release them they was sure to point out multiple times to live hostage to tell police that they were not to blame for that shooting.

Ultimately, I think we all arguing right thing only from different perspectives.

....
Quote:
“But those women have families, children… They told us their husbands and brothers had been killed. What would I have done in they shoes? I think I’d done the same as them. Now I carry on for my little boy’s sake. But if he’d died too and I was left with no-one I think I, too, would have strapped on a bomb-belt and gone to blow my self up.”
(Very interesting commentary by Russian woman hostage, on the end of BBC documentary movie putting in perspective this and that "Suicide bombings" talk...)
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