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Russian veterans request political reassessment of Afghanistan war

Published time: February 11, 2014 13:21
Edited time: February 14, 2014 13:32
The convoy of Soviet armored personnel vehicles leaving Afghanistan, 1989 (RIA Novosti / Alexander Liskin)

The convoy of Soviet armored personnel vehicles leaving Afghanistan, 1989 (RIA Novosti / Alexander Liskin)

The head of the Union of Afghan War Veterans is to ask the Russian President to reconsider the negative political assessment of the Soviet Union’s military intervention in Afghanistan.

Frants Klintsevich was speaking at a conference dedicated to the 25th anniversary of the withdrawal of Soviet troops from Afghanistan.

Klintsevich, who is also a Lower House MP representing the United Russia Party, claimed that the “politically and legally groundless assessment of the Afghan war as a failed and reckless attempt” leads to many decisions concerning veterans not being fullfilled. The MP said he was going to address the Commander-in-Chief of the Russian military, President Vladimir Putin, with a request to revise the attitude to the conflict.

The deputy said that according to official statistics the Soviet military lost 15,000 people killed and over 50,000 wounded in Afghanistan. 417 servicemen were taken prisoners and only a third were returned home. Over 200,000 Russian servicemen were decorated for bravery during the war.

Russia deployed military forces in Afghanistan in 1979 after repeated requests by the Kabul government trying to suppress armed Islamist opposition. The war lasted for over nine years and ended in early 1989 with complete withdrawal of Soviet troops. The pro-Soviet government survived for three more years and fell only after the collapse of the Soviet Union when it stopped supplying weapons and goods.

In December 1989 the Congress of People’s Deputies – the supreme legislative body of the Soviet Union – passed a resolution which condemned the military intervention in Afghanistan as politically and morally wrong. The same congress ordered changes to the Constitution that would set concrete rules for military aid to foreign countries and also asked the government to launch a state rehabilitation program to help veterans and the families of those killed.

On February 15 Russia and other ex-soviet states are celebrating the 25th anniversary of final withdrawal of Soviet troops from Afghanistan. Ukraine and Moldova officially made 2014 the year of veterans of the Afghan War. All countries of the Russia-led political bloc the Commonwealth of Independent States have agreed to issue commemorative medals to be awarded to veterans.

Comments (31)


Donna Marie 25.02.2014 21:29

[quote name='Vann Tedd' time='12.02.2014 02:02']This report clearly contradict western propaganda ,that the JIhadist defeated the soviets in Afganistan. They left peacefully and it was not until 3 years later they left that the government in Afganistan collapse after not receiving more supplies. Russia invaded because the CIA was using Terrorist to conduct attacks inside the soviet union territory .

I don't know what history book you are reading from but it should be call propaganda book. Russia invaded Afghanistan because it always wanted warm waters . It destroyed Afghanistan and left thousands of bombs behind .


Mohammad 18.02.2014 03:18

Countries that fight so much, cannot care as much i.e. USA, Russia, England, France, etc. Not for their soldiers, not for their enemy's women and children. They have alarmingly high rates of homeless veterans because war is now just a tool to them not a decision that must be made carefully and above all, morally.

Al l in all, Respect and pride to all Soviet veterans of the Afghan war. You did your job with respect and pride for your country with professionalism. May God one day grant you the justice you so long desire and may we one day have a time where there will be no more wars, ever.


john robert roworth 17.02.2014 09:37

Lilly OfTheValley 16.02.2014 19:05

The Soviets got their аss whipped in a brainless colonial war. Nothing to reassess here.


Ho w times have changed. The western powers boycotted the Russian Olympic games over their invasion of Afghanistan. This was not long after the Americans were booted out of Vietnam............. .

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