‘I’m scared of what’s next’: secrets of a Russian soldier who kept a war diary

Pavel Filadiev. The name certainly doesn’t mean anything to you, but it’s starting to get people talking. This Russian soldier was actually fighting in Ukraine. The 34-year-old was sent with his division to take over the port of Kherson. Throughout his life, he kept a war diary, which he published a few days ago on the Russian social network Vkontakte. He condemns the atrocities of conflict.

“When we were in the middle of the fighting in the trenches around Mykolaiv, terrible things happened.”He slips in particular in this 141-page long document. “I saw comrades mutilating prisoners of war, and then they again vented their despair on the corpses. Terrible madness turned against us. The soldiers were looking for a way out, and sometimes I saw extreme comrades shoot or mutilate some other parts of their bodies in order to remove them from the battlefield with rubles (i.e. 50,000 Euros)”.

“They make us real savages”

In an interview given to a journalist from the Guardian, Pavel Filadiev returns to some details of the war, such as these computers stolen by Russian soldiers. The man explains: “Even in Russia’s second-hand market, they still get a few months’ salary by reselling these computers. I didn’t steal any computers, but I stole a hat I found in a wrecked truck. Because my own balaclava is too cold.” For Pavel Filatyev, when Russian soldiers are sent into battle with inferior equipment, it is strategic: it increases their desire for revenge. “In this way they make us true savages”He explains.

If Pavel Filadiev publicly admits today, he is condemning because he is no longer involved in this war. He was injured and later discharged due to an eye infection. Under his mother’s advice, he escaped from Russia when he wanted to stay, escaping the security services. Because with the information he revealed, the now ex-Russian soldier knows he faces prison in his home country.

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About the wounded in the war, like him, Filadiev says: “I went to see some people in the hospital. Among others, survivors of the rocket attack on the Moskva ship. They said they have not yet received compensation. Also, many families have not yet been informed that their son was killed. The battlefield.”

Most Russian players will be unhappy

In the Guardian, the ex-soldier vows to keep quiet no longer. If he is the first to renounce himself, many soldiers declare his opinion. “Most players are not happy with what is happening in Ukraine”He says. “They’re not happy with Putin and his policies, they’re not happy with a defense minister who doesn’t serve in the military.”

Notably, since the publication of his war diary, all of his former comrades have severed ties with him. But he is adamant that about 20% of his comrades-in-arms support him. Many at the front told him that they had great respect for the patriotism of Ukrainians, who were fighting for what was worth and defending their own territory.

As for others, Pavel Filadiev is suspect because popular protests are slow to arrive or moderate. “I fear what will happen next”He concludes, fearing that Russia will continue to struggle despite its already terrible record.

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