Extract from ‘The Unstoppable Tragedy: The Second Russian Civil War’ by Peter Hodges
Serbia kept its head down after the vicious annihilation wrought on its Bosnian and Croatian secessionists. Milosevic was on thin ice and he knew it, as well as dealing with a significant demographic crisis in Kosovo, a region he very much wanted to keep as part of Serbia but a majority Muslim Albanian nonetheless. To that end, he set about two different goals: refusal to escalate the situation in Albania to one of genocide or ethnic cleansing, while at the same time seeking to flood the region with Serbian refugees from Croatia and Bosnia. Serbians were herded, often at gunpoint to camps deep within Kosovo with the intention of turning the camps into towns. Once refugees from Russia started flowing out, Milosevic likewise jumped on the opportunity and imported almost a quarter of a million refugees primarily into the Kosovo region. Needless to say the conflicts with the local Albanians were fierce. One riot in September 1995 led to the main Orthodox Church in Pristina getting burned to the ground, with roughly a dozen Serbians and Albanians each dead. The ethnic conflicts helped consolidate support for Milosevic, and by the end of the year, Slavs were a comfortable majority in Kosovo, much to Albania’s anger. As the West was too distracted with keeping their finger on the trigger in case Russia should explode, the Serbs were given somewhat of a generous allowance for their actions. Milosevic thought so far ahead as to encourage his most infamous refugees, the many war criminals who escaped Srpska after NATO’s hammer fell, to sneak out of the country to Petrograd by boat and plane. This helped reduce pressure on Serbia at home to hand over the refugees and helped bolster ties between Petrograd and Belgrade, the only European country that acknowledged the Nashis as the legitimate government of Russia. Almost immediately, they would make a terrifying impact on the war, including one infamous individual in particular.
Arkan was not his real name. Indeed, Željko Ražnatović’s typical crime was not war crime, as he was originally a literal mobster. Yet he made a name for himself as a particularly monstrous individual, the infamous photo of him holding a baby tiger by its fur while his balaclava-laden henchmen stand menacingly around him projecting his menace but not entirely his evil. He had participated in much of the ethnic cleansing of the Srpska Republic. Once the dreams of greater Serbia imploded with NATO jets, he received an offer to work in Russia to help train paramilitaries. He accepted, taking his most trusted men, forming his new ‘Tigers’, as he called his paramilitary group. Once the war started, he found himself on the side of the Petrograd government with a detachment of ruthless but battle-hardened Serbian war criminals who wanted revenge on the West and felt ensuring the victory of a Slavic-Supremacistt Russia would do just the trick. In thanks for his help by Nevzorov, his unit was given a present: a real, fully grown tiger, whom the group would nickname ‘Ratko’ after the Serbian general. This would become the group’s mascot and was often fed the bodies of the dead as an act of humiliation. At least three prisoners are on record as having been fed to the tiger alive, two simply for being Tatars.
It was only fitting that the final act of the Battle of Moscow would be carried out by someone as savage as Arkan. As the cyclone of gas and hell engulfed the centre of Moscow, the Red Army and RNU both fled from the city south and north respectively, both completely exhausted and shattered. Unfortunately for the Red Army, the Tigers were not tired. Pouncing on their wounded prey from the west, the Tigers barrelled into the mud-ridden, undersupplied columns of the Red Army. The Red Army collapsed into a rout, fleeing as quickly as they could escape the mud that swallowed them. Many had their vehicles run out of fuel in the middle of the mud fields. Many others stuck to the roads and were thus easily intercepted and annihilated. The addition of the Tigers would finally chalk up the Battle of Moscow as a Petrograd victory, though it was surely the most pyrrhic victory in the history of warfare. The city of Moscow only existed in memory. Even its ruins were a memory, it was merely an impassible field of poison barbed wire, brick and shrapnel. There was no flag raising at the Kremlin, or St. Basil’s, only triumphant pictures of abandoned jeeps twenty miles south of where the carnage was. Of course, given that the RNU had likewise ran from the city, Stalingrad propaganda claimed it had been a gigantic success with all those who were slaughtered and captured by the Tigers referred to as the heroic dead of Moscow, bodies entombed in the rubble of the eternal city. Naturally, this was unconvincing to Western observers who watched the horror uninterrupted from military satellites, the silent observers of a doomed nation.
The horror was perhaps best encapsulated by the London Times, which ran the infamous headline ‘Moscow - Population: 0’.
The rout would convince foreign observers that Anpilov’s government was finished. The Red Army had thrown its best men into both the Moscow and Perm meatgrinders for the return of burning any bridges with the Free Nations Alliance. Its supplies were exhausted, its men fleeing at their first chance, the Commissars were setting up impromptu bandit groups just to find food to survive. The purges would continue throughout the end of the year, executed publicly to increase the fear in the population as if there was any way to increase the fear that already existed. Vladislav Achalov, perhaps the final memory of the Pre-National Salvation Front Parliamentary alliance was hanged for a battle that was supposedly won on November 3rd. The Black Colonel, Viktor Alksnis, as head of Army Group North likewise had to die in honour of the glorious victory on the same day. He was given the particular humiliation of being forced to confess to being a Latvian nationalist spy before his death, shot with the Latvian flag scrunched in his mouth in what many Latvians consider the one good thing Anpilov did albeit for the opposite reason. Prosecutor General Viktor Ilyukhin gleefully prosecuted his former National Salvation Front comrades, all the while knowing that he may have been next. Marshall Dmitry Yazov would be informed ahead of time of his imminent purging by his comrade in the 1991 Coup attempt, KGB head Kryuchkov. Yazov attempted to flee to Tatar lines to surrender and escape the torture and death that awaited him in KGB captivity. After being beaten to a pulp by Tatar forces, they reluctantly agreed to accept his surrender, before he was handed over to the West to face justice. Yazov would be the highest-ranking member of Anpilov’s government to survive the war, given a life sentence at the Hague for his killing of Lithuanian and Azerbaijani civilians in the dying days of the Soviet Union, and for his indiscriminate use of chemical weapons against the Uralic nations. A rare instance of one of the Soviet Union’s criminals finally getting the trial they deserved, though many were content simply with the fate they would ultimately receive in 1996. Despite having committed the single worst act of treason of anyone in Anpilov’s government, Kryuchkov’s betrayal was the one thing the paranoid leader didn’t recognise, leading to the KGB leader remaining in power right until the rapidly approaching end of the Soviet Republic.
By December 31st, 1995, the brutality of mass chemical warfare had let its poisonous mark with a frontline stretching from Nizhny Novgorod on the Volga to Ryazan, Tula, then south to Kursk and Belgorod. The buildings were remarkably intact in many places, though one couldn’t fail to find the twisted, agonized faces on the poisoned corpses that littered their streets. Nor could one fail to hear the screams of female ‘racial enemies’ in the surrounding camps, as their sons, brothers, fathers and husbands were marched to their inevitable deaths in the ‘Honorary Russian’ Battalions. Slavic Red Army prisoners were also becoming a serious issue for the Fascists given the collapse in law and order on the Red Army’s side and the belief that they could still make fine citizens of the Republic of the Russians once their ‘Communist brainwashing’ had been removed. They would be sent to ‘Re-education’ camps with the intention of brainwashing them into loyal Fascists. Those who hoped for some relief after the Anpilov regime was removed from their towns were very often sorely, sorely disappointed by what was to come. Ethnic minorities dashed for the Ukrainian border, their lives literally depending on it. Some made it, many did not. None who failed the first time had a second time.
Extract from 'One Soldier’s War in Russia' by Arkady Babchenko
Nothing prepares you for having a gun barrel thirty centimetres in front of you. My gas mask offered no protection yet I somehow felt grateful that this useless cloth covered my face as if it somehow shielded me from a bullet to my face. You can only look in one direction but you can’t see a damned thing. Two centimetres into the barrel and it’s simply unending blackness, and in two milliseconds the bullet will also send me to unending blackness. Except it won’t be unending blackness. Death is not a black screen. It’s nothing. It’s not being. It’s never being. It’s no one ever being. It’s never having the chance of being again. The most natural and unthinkable state, just in front of your face, ready to snatch the life from you before you even know what happened. I was sitting in the mud in a row with my fellow troops, captured by the Tigers, one of the most notorious groups in the Nashi army, almost as bad as the RNU. They felt like they had something to prove after the West wiped them out in Bosnia, so now they took it out on us. It was smart, considering that if the Red Army went up against the Bosnians they’d probably give us a run for our money. Vladimir sat just beside me, the hazmat concealing his face. I wondered if his face would betray fear, terror, the same emotion he’d inflicted on countless people in the last few months. His passion in shooting ‘traitors’ certainly did not seem to carry through to passions for heroic last stands. I somewhat admired that the guy pointing his gun at him wasn’t laughing at him wearing the hazmat.
The horrifying monotony was finally broken as a senior-looking officer arrived, standing before us as a farmer standing over his newly purchased animals. Like all the Tigers, his face was concealed beneath a black gas mask, where not a single identifying feature could be seen. It was exactly like a nightmare, with inhuman monsters prowling around us to decide which to devour. There actions certainly didn’t indicate humanity, so why should their faces? However, I had been so desensitized to life and death that my only thought was seeing how much higher quality their gas masks appeared to be than ours. He spoke to his soldiers in Serbian, leading to them ensuring their rifles were pointed right at us. Slowly, one by one, they pulled off our gas masks, revealing the shattered faces of those who had survived the last few days in the Civil War. Some men looked like they had aged twenty years since a few days ago, looking almost like pensioners with their whitened hair. When Vladimir took his hazmat off to reveal his face, his emotion was as surprising as it was unsurprising: envy. I didn’t move when they pulled mine off, though it left me feeling naked. Finally, they took off the gas mask of the person next to me: it was the Tatar girl from before. At this, the predators stopped, seeing her facial features.
“Excuse me ma'am,” one said in his accented Russian, “are you Tatar?”
For the first time I could remember since the war started, my heart sank.
“A pity,” he said, “you know what has to be done.”
The girl started to shake, then she started to cry, as she knew what was to come next.
Her tears running down her purple eyes, she was lifted her by her hair as another soldier restrained her arms and applied zip tie handcuffs. Now helpless, we were forced to watch as she was dragged out into the mud field. The officer threw her face-first to the ground over a muddy puddle and shoved his boot on the back of her head. Shoving almost his full weight on the back of her skull, her head had nowhere to go but down. Into the sludge and mud, away from the air that sustained her. Within thirty seconds, we could already see the telltale signs of imminent death. We could hear her scream in the water, retching as the mud washed into her mouth and simply made her drown quicker. Slowly, the movements and air bubbles stopped, and her murderer simply removed his boot and turned back to us. Her body would remain there, probably to be eaten by passers by or animals. She was probably raised in a home with a family, with brothers and sisters. She probably had school friends she played with. She probably had boys that she loved. She probably had books she would talk all day about, heroes she believed in, favourite foods and favourite colours. The only grace I felt in that moment was that I never had a conversation with her and that the only thing I could feel in that moment was nothing more than helpness. If I had been the father that raised her in my arms, took her to the swing set and knew just how high to raise her so that she wasn’t scared, who told her I loved her and would always protect her as she loved me, then I would have felt no other option but to ask to join her to wherever she had gone. In these moments you ask, “What had she done to deserve this?” in horror about what happened to her. But the better question is “What could she have done to deserve this?”. There was no one in this world who deserved what this girl went through, not even the monster who had done this. But the most horrifying thing for me was how the war had dulled me even to this sort of sight.
One by one, they pulled off our masks. If they weren’t sure about your ethnicity they asked for your name. If they had a non–Slavic name, or you were obviously non-Slavic to begin with, the same thing happened: dragged kicking and screaming to be drowned in the mud at the end of a Serb boot. Roughly a quarter of our surviving unit perished that afternoon, their bodies simply left to rot in the mud as if they had never mattered. For me to have joined those corpses would have been the most technical of deaths in all of existence, as everything inside me was already dead. My soul broken, I dropped my face into the mud at my knees, hoping I could will myself to death by burying my head in the filth of the Earth that I could suffocate there.
A firm kick at my shoulder launched me out of the mud. My shouts of pain were strangled by the hand across my throat.
“You ungrateful shit! After what we’ve just done for you, you decide to throw your life away too?! Don't you know why we're fighting this conflict?! We’re giving you a country where you and your children alone will rule! Not to be shared with some Mongol goat farmer, Chechen bandit, Tatar whore, nor any of their larvae! A Russia where none but the Russians will make the decisions! A Russia for none but the Russians! God, I hate you! I hate you more than the Tatars. Fucking ungrateful Red Army race traitors. You’re going to stay alive, if only so you can suffer forever. You can’t remember or suffer when you die - you can only suffer if you’re alive. In the meantime you’ll be properly re-educated about the mission of the Slavic peoples. You and everyone else here will go to the re-education camps - there you will learn to become loyal citizens of the Republic of the Russians and expunge the influence of Communism once and for all. Before you die, you will love us.”
He finally loosened his grip and I fell back into the mud, now desperate for breath again. I had forgotten my urge to die and returned to my animalistic survival instincts. I cursed myself again for not having the guts to kill myself.
No combination of syllables could have given me a greater shock. It was the first time I could remember that someone used my first name. How much more shocked I was when I saw that the one saying it was none other than the Commissar. He stared at me emotionlessly, obviously indifferent to my plight.
“Don’t do anything stupid,” he said as if I had been the one who had done something wrong. “We’re going to the camp.”
A strange feeling came over me. Not so much that the Commissar remembered my name, but a realisation that for the first time in my life, I could talk back to him. If I had talked back to him only a day ago I would currently be decomposing on an abandoned path in the middle of nowhere, with only the flies to mourn me. I shuddered with sick glee cresting over a sea of misery.
“Sure, commissar,” I said, before turning to look at the bodies face-down in the mud fields ahead, “but it looks like a few of us aren’t coming.”
I hoped he would be hurt. Expression unchanged, he replied.
Extract from 'The Great White Void: Siberia 1993-1996' by Nikolai Chernenko
Only the Mongol army stood in the way of union with Lebed’s forces. Aksyuchits was poised to deliver the killing blow from the Zabaykalsky region just to the east while Lebed’s forces reached the shores of Lake Baikal on November 20th and vowed to rendezvous with FEK forces to celebrate Orthodox Christmas together. Standing in their way was the Mongolian army, which despite finally clearing out the main cities of Buryatia had only done so due to the evacuation of ethnic Russian civilians to more assuring administration under their ethnic kin with Aksyuchits. The FEK, supplied by the Koreans and Japanese, were certainly a formidable fighting force given the low standards of the war, and the Mongolians were certainly in a terrible position to be sandwiched between two advancing Russian forces. This was when the Mongolians received the most unexpected form of aid they could have imagined, straight from Beijing. Beijing offered up to 50,000 ‘volunteers from Inner Mongolia’. Naturally, these were just Han Chinese standard soldiers, the oldest having been part of China’s last conflict in Vietnam. The Chinese had little interest in Mongolian irredentism, but they did have an interest in dividing up Russia into smaller pieces. A Mongolian Buryatia practically cut Russia in two given it cut the Trans-Siberian and the BAM. If Sakha could maintain its independence then that would change the de facto division into a de jure one. Furthermore, the Chinese were desperate for revenge against the FEK, seeing them as a perennial threat given their foundational beliefs and angry for blocking their attempts to extend their influence into former Chinese territory. With at least one report of a physical fight breaking out in the Mongolian cabinet in the debate, the application of the ‘volunteers’ was accepted. This was announced publicly as an intimidation tactic, the Chinese excusing their involvement as similar to America’s involvement in Chechnya. Needless to say, Langley didn’t see it that way and relations between Washington and Beijing immediately cooled. Further needless to say, the FEK and Lebed didn’t care and promised that the ‘volunteers’ would meet a similar fate to the North Koreans at Vladivostok. Anpilov praised the move as an attempt to block the two ‘Western Puppet Warlords’ from achieving peace beyond the Urals while Petrograd knowingly wished ‘good luck’ to Lebed and Aksyuchits in an attempt to sully the two by association. Privately, Nevzorov had given up on territory east of the Urals, simply content that two ethnic Russians in some way loyal to tradition had emerged from the chaos as the power brokers. Alexey Dobrovolsky and Alexander Barkashov were also pleased by this turn of fortune, though for one very horrifying reason that the pair had already began discussing with Dugin.
As Siberian Winter began at full force that December, the average temperature fell to minus twenty Celcius as a daily mean. Vehicles broke down, guns froze, many refused to leave their bases and go on patrol. FEK forces trudged through the knee-deep snow towards the regional capital of Ulan-Ude. At the town of Tarbagatai on December 12th, they would encounter the Chinese volunteers for the first time. But for all the agony of the FEK’s soldiers in the conditions, they were Siberians and were used to the weather at some level. With decision making typical of dictatorships, the Chinese ‘volunteers’ didn’t come from Inner Mongolia at all, indeed a good portion actually came from the near-tropical south. To say they were unprepared for the weather was a total understatement, with some reports of frostbite among troops on the initial trains coming in from Mongolia to Buryatia. The unreliability of Chinese equipment turned mobile units into stranded fortresses as the batteries simply could not take the pounding from the weather. One further reason for the resiliency of the FEK’s troops was the decision of the FEK to phase out alcohol from its soldiers and increasingly clamp down on drinking. This was widely mocked abroad as a death sentence for any Russian army, but two things would change their opinion. The first was the surprising extent of compliance with the policy. Many had underestimated the religious awakening of many Russians, ironically perhaps mostly among refugees from the west moving out east. They looked up to Aksyuchits almost as a prophet leading Russia to salvation against evil. To that end, the newfound belief and religiosity of the troops caused alcohol use to plummet among FEK troops, by far the lowest consumers when compared to the other armies in the Civil War. The second was the pleasant consequence of the first. Given their refusal to use alcohol, they preserved warmth while ironically feeling colder as vodka would dissipate the heat to the limbs to give the false feeling of warmth. This would help the FEK’s soldiers endure the Siberian Winter brutality, while General Winter simply laughed at China’s attempts to defy him by fanaticism. Legends of Chinese troops charging FEK positions only to collapse and die from exposure on the advance abounded. Of the Chinese casualties from the conflict, it is estimated that at least two thirds were due to frostbite. The Battle of Tarbagatai would renew the legend of the FEK having God on their side, as the Chinese ‘volunteers’ were swept from the battlefield with relative ease, the first detachments of the FEK making out the town of Ulan-Ude through their frost-glazed binoculars on December 16th.
Lebed had his own problems, with a primarily Mongolian force awaiting their arrival at Kultuk on the base of Lake Baikal. There was no way around them, with the Mongolians dug firmly into the route to stop the linkup with Aksyuchits. Rather than confront the Mongolians head-on, Lebed devised his most memorable assault of the war. Lake Baikal had frozen over, not enough to allow vehicles but enough to allow horses. Inspired by images of Nevsky, the General would begin what would become known among the Russian speaking world as the Second Battle on the Ice. As Lebed’s main force began shelling Kultuk and launching a diversionary attack, a hastily assembled cavalry group charged over Lake Baikal in hopes of flanking the Mongolians. Initially successful, the Mongolians finally saw the charge in the distance. They scrambled to change their cannons’ directions, finally letting loose with a volley over the lake. As one veteran recalled, “We charged directly towards where they were firing from, hearing the shells sometimes whizz right by us loud enough to bleed your ears amidst all the clattering and screaming. The shells exploded in and under the ice - I saw one rider blindsided with the ice he stood on suddenly tilted to an angle, before him and the horse fell backwards into the water and the ice righted itself, entombing them in the lake. Others that even just got splashed by the water often didn’t make it just from the frostbite. Still others got unlucky and the ice fell in front of them, breaking their horses legs and hurling the riders to the ice where they got trampled into powdered meat. We could only go forward. Our base was miles back so there was no possibility of retreat. Literally kill or be killed. Finally, we managed to get into the woods and finally get some cover - dismounting we could finally take the Mongolians on, sometimes hand to hand. A little bit of the Battle on the Ice, a little bit of the Americans at Normandy in 1944.” The action known as ‘The Last Charge’ would be described by Mike Hoare, a legendary mercenary who had taken upon himself to be a trainer in Lebed’s army, to be ‘The final and most glorious chapter in the history of the noble steed.” The Mongolians found themselves in an unsustainable position and were forced to retreat overland into the border regions that the Buryat insurgents had taken at the beginning of the conflict. Lebed declared victory on December 10th 1995, before continuing to send his forces along the coast towards Ulan-Ude.
The Battle for Ulan-Ude began on December 20th 1995, as FEK forces assaulted a city jointly administered by Mongol and Buryat authorities (who certainly did not always see eye-to-eye). The Buryats burned the main Orthodox Church in the city as an act of defiance, to which in revenge the FEK ‘accidentally’ struck the Rinpoche Bagsha Buddhist temple with a ‘stray’ artillery strike. Eventually, the Mongolians recognised the situation as hopeless, leaving Buryat forces to perish in the city. Markhayev was officially killed in battle against the FEK but it is widely believed he was killed after an altercation with a Mongolian officer when he was informed that Mongolia was abandoning the city. It certainly was to Mongolia’s benefit, as the border regions that had once been loyal to Markhayev now surrendered their allegiance directly to the Mongolian government. On January 3rd, 1996, Ulan-Ude was declared secure despite fanatical resistance that veterans of Vladivostok could well remember, though now they were the North Koreans.The Buryat population was collectively considered party to the ethnic cleansing of ethnic Russians once the Mongolians had advanced inland, and so it gave the FEK an excuse in their not violent but still prejudiced program to remove Buryatia of its indigenous population, with a serious of ludicrously strict requirements being drawn up to make traditional Buryat life an impossibility. On the very next day, on the banks the Selenge River near Selenginsk, advance units of both the Provisional Siberian Government and the Far Eastern Kingdom finally united, finally reuniting Russia from the Urals to the Pacific, with the Selenge River as the border between the two nations.
That said, it certainly didn’t mean an end to violence, conflict, or betrayal in Siberia.
Extract from ‘Averting Armageddon: The West in the Second Russian Civil War’ by Frank Wolfowitz
Dudayev was quite pleased as he returned to his role as President in October of 1995. Though he had lost a leg and an eye (not that it meant anything apart from being even more respected by his country), he had also won against the Islamist invasion. The US army had cleared everything up to the Emirate’s border, while the Icherkian army had cleared out the Russian border north of the river. The country of Ichkeria was now a devastated but united and independent country. Dudayev supported moving in to finish off the Emirate and restore secular rule, arguing that Salafism was an Arab and consequently foreign ideology in the Caucasus, which he defined as being lovers of freedom. The Americans indignantly refused, as Dagestan had far less national identity to oppose the Islamists, even worse terrain and a much more uncomfortable chance of escalation - Chechnya had been de facto independent since 1991, Dagestan barely a year. Limited bombing runs were allowed, and certainly none that could have been misconstrued as an American first strike on Anpilov. Consequently the Islamists were not only allowed to exist in the Emirate but were allowed to move into Russia when they realied that the Americans would not pursue them into Dagestan. The Emirarte consequently sent shock raids into cities across the northern Caucasus, targeting hospitals, churches and elementary schools for hostage-taking (something they quickly stopped when they realised that resources were more important to Anpilov than the lives of his nation’s children), or simply just to kill anything there that moved. The Stavropol region reeled under the barbarian slaughter, the eastern half swallowed by the Islamist terror. Christians saw their (often prepubescent) daughters sold into sexual slavery to be the wives of Jihadis while atheists saw nothing as they were simply burned alive or beheaded. Armenians made a tragically high number of victims, discriminated by the Russians for being Caucasians, now discriminated against by the Jihadis for being Christians.
Attempts to move northwards by the Islamists militarily, however, were stopped by an unlikely foe: the Kalmyks. The only Buddist group in Europe, the Kalmyk republic remained loyal to Anpilov out of fear, while the fear of extermination at the hands of the Islamists grew. Three times in the fall of 1995 the Islamists attempted to breach the defences of Artezia and failed each time, the Kalmyks fighting for the existence of their entire ethnic group. They were so successful that the Americans were interested in giving foreign support, to which they were harshly put down for fear of questions over loyalty with Anpilov. Thus the only avenue through which the Jihadi poison continued to spill was the Stavropol region, as well as occasional flotillas that were obliterated by the Azerbaijanis and Kazakhs the moment they were just off shore. At the same time, despite calls from the West to deliver a killing blow to the Emirate, the Clinton Administration refused, believing containment and occasional bombing was sufficient.
That changed on November 11th 1995. On that day, New York City held its Veterans Day Parade. On that day, a van loaded with explosives barrelled its way through police and exploded in a suicide attack against a particularly crowded block of spectators - two gunmen then strafed the crowd with machinegun fire before ultimately being dispatched by the NYPD. Forty-three people were killed, eight of whom were children, with the attackers linked to the Al-Qaeda network in Dagestan. It was the second time in two years that the city had been targetted by the terrorist organisation after the World Trade Centre Bombings in 1993, and the city would be damned if there was a third. Demands for a military intervention went into overdrive, with House Leader Newt Gingrich warning that if Clinton didn’t launch an intervention into Dagestan to uproot Al-Qaeda that he would support an impeachment. Polls showed that 67% of Americans supported an intervention into Dagestan ‘despite the risk of being dragged into the Russian Civil War’. But ultimately the final confirmation of America’s escalation came from an unlikely source: Anpilov. On November 12th, the Americans received a simple, one-line message from Stalingrad by means of the Chinese embassy that they would support American intervention into the Emirate to destroy the Islamist government. Though no explanation was attached, it is thought that by now Anpilov knew which direction the war was turning and wanted to somewhat reduce the amount of troops he had in the south to redirect against the Fascist menace in the north.
Therefore on November 30th, B-2 Bombers began to pulverise every Jihadi base that could be found in Dagestan. Missiles shattered what conventional forces were in the open, though Basayev had prepared for a guerilla conflict since Bin Laden’s attack in New York. He was furious at Bin Laden but felt that ultimately conflict with the West was inevitable and so accepted the new state of affairs. After a week of bombing until every conventional target in Dagestan was in ruins, the US army (along with the Ichkerians acting as translators) rolled into Dagestan to face the Jihadi army that had convened in this godforsaken corner of the world. They began by moving northward into the relatively flatter regions, quickly flattening the resistance in their path, and meeting the extremely hostile glances of the Red Army, staring at them from the north. In Stavropol, the Jihadis could not be touched, and so it was left to the shattered Red Army to deal with the admittedly weakened Islamists. On Christmas Eve the Stars and Stripes flew over Makhachkala to much rejoicing from local secular residents who had suffered indescribably under the boot of foreign Jihadis. This cut off Dagestan from the rest of Russia, but now ahead lay a new danger for the Americans: the heart of the Caucasus Mountains, where Jihadis lurked in every cave. In one of those caves was Osama Bin Laden, who was exceptionally content. He was content because on December 12th 1995, he received the news he had waited for: His attempts to bribe one of Anpilov’s nuclear base’s commanders had paid off.
His dream of a Salafist world, more precisely a slaughtered world where only Salafism remained, had never been closer to reality.