Video footage has emerged showing the brutal beating and mock executions of Russian soldiers by their superiors, after they were accused of taking drugs, “breaking morale” and getting their comrades killed in combat.
The video – posted online by the Russian anti-corruption group Gulagu.net – shows a number of men cowering on the ground as they’re beaten by sticks.
Later in the footage, another soldier repeatedly fires a gun just inches from a soldier’s head, narrowly missing him.
Elsewhere in the video, another group of men can be seen being forced to dig a large hole nearby.
One of those administering the punishment says: “These people killed our boys from the 1st company. They got fucked up on salts and afraid of themselves.”
“They just didn’t go, they chickened out, they passed on this cowardice to others... They didn’t have the courage... They broke the morale of the soldiers, and because of them, our boys from the 1st company died.
“We are punishing them right now... So they brought drugs, fed them salt, and went into battle... That's it, you are 200 [army code for dead]. You are already 200.”
Salts, also called bath salts, are synthetic stimulants that can cause acute psychosis and aggressive behavior.
One of those being beaten yells “Please forgive me,” while another says: “I just tried some, I didn’t know.”