Officers Of 76th Russian Shock Troops Division Operating In Ukraine

Tyler Durden's picture

Everyone is curious who those unmarked men in unforms that have been seen in youtube clips from the Crimea are. Courtesy of Russian blogger Lev Shlosberg who writes for the newspaper Pskovskaya Guberniya, we now have an answer: according to him they are the officers of the 76th Chernihov (Pskov) Storm Troops Division and have slowly dispersed across key choke points in Ukraine.

From his post, translated by

According to one of the participants in the operation, officers and contractors of the 76th Shock Troops Division have been re-locating to Ukrainian territory since last week. By early this week, there were already more than 100 soldiers. The last of the famous detachments was sent on Thursday, 27 February. They are fully armed, with 5,000 rounds of ammunition per person. There is one truck per 10 soldiers, and they are completely loaded with weapons including flame-throwers. Upon arrival on the territory of Ukraine, they did not report their geographical locations to people, and they were assigned local tasks. Most likely, this was Sevastopol and Simferopol. Emergency troops remain in Yysk, and did not take part in the operation. The barracks of the 76th Storm Troops Division on Margelova Street in Pskov is practically empty.

Some background on the 76th:

Originally established in 1939 as the 157th Rifle Brigade, division gained prominence during WWII as the 76th Guards Rifle Division fighting on the USSR's southern frontiers. From 1988-1992 the 76th Airborne Division, as it had become known, engaged in preventative security, averting the possible outbreak of war in former USSR territory. The division battled alongside Chechen paramilitary forces in the 1990s to wrest control of Chechen territories from Chechen separatists in the first and second Chechen wars. In 2006 the 76th Airborne Division became an Air Assault Division. During the 2008 Battle of Tskhinvali 76th Airborne Division assaults were instrumental in driving Georgian troops from South Ossetia in the Southern Caucasus.

The 76th Division comprises three regiments - the 104th, 234th and 237th, whose ranks are filled by full time professional servicemen, as opposed to conscripts. The division is equipped with the most sophisticated weaponry in modern warfare, such as the 'smart' precision guided munitions, guided missiles and 2S9 NONA self-propelled mortar vehicles.

Perhaps not surprising, it was the 76th that was also involved in Syria:

Given the worsening crisis in Syria, the Nezavisimaya Gazeta newspaper reported that the Russian army is apparently being prepared for a mission in Syria. Citing anonymous sources in the military leadership, the newspaper said that Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the general staff to work out a plan for military operations outside Russia, including in Syria.


The units being prepared for an intervention are the 76th Division of airborne forces (an especially experienced unit of the Russian army), the 15th Army Division, as well as special forces from a brigade of the Black Sea fleet, which has a base in the Syrian port of Tartus.


The details of the operational plan are being prepared by the working parties of the Collective Security Treaty Organisation, to which most of the post-Soviet states belong, as well as the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, to which China and Russia belong.

And the 76th appears to have been busy today: Ayder Muzhdabayev, deputy editor of Moskovsky Komsomolets, reported on Facebook 2 hours ago:

Urgent from Crimea


Armed divisions have seized the state television station (GTRK) of Crimea. All the staff have gathered together at the Crimean Tatar TV channel ATR, hundreds of others have come. They are waiting for the seizure. Several APCs have arrived. For now, they’ve passed by. They are also expected seizure of the building of the Crimean Tatar’s Medjlis [Assembly]. People are already going there. Everyone is afraid of what will happen tonight. There it is.


Friends, colleagues, take care of yourself! Don’t resist the military. God save Crimea!

It would appear Putin is not exactly deterred by Obama's harsh language.

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john39's picture

meanwhile, a hint at what was really going on with the "peaceful protestors" in Ukraine:

ArrestBobRubin's picture

Yo Vlad, check it out, I've Chosen a special target for your lads to take out early on...

nope-1004's picture

Looks like Russia beat the US to the energy choke point.  Wonder how Obummer is going to pay for a war, let alone justify one after being humiliated repeatedly in the international arena?

Ever since Syria, US is lost.

Der Wille Zur Macht's picture

Since Syria eh? I would've said much earlier than that.

nope-1004's picture

Agreed.  But you can almost feel the international reaction to Obama since then as completely resentful, largely because of the NSA revelations, but also because Putin showed Obama his ass in Syria.


johnQpublic's picture

we need to hear moar details right from the horses mouth

mr kerry?

strannick's picture

It was considerate of Putin to hold off on the invasion til after market close...

Urban Redneck's picture

If the bankers still have all their money, they have an entire weekend and all the more reason, to impress upon the shine-boy-in-chief, the true gravity of the situation.

Divide et Impera

mofreedom's picture

I'm pullin for Putin because I hate Soros and the Masons and the Shriners.

But I am glad they tore down the statues of Lenin o'there.

No IMF, No EU, No Soros!!!!!!

Edit:  I love America, but I hate my "loved ones".

Bonapartist's picture

If the EU gains control the statues of Lenin will be put back up.

MeMadMax's picture

Let's face it. 

We have the worst butthole in history that is the prentender in chief...


This guy makes bush,nixon, and carter look like a bunch of amateurs...


Never have we had such a person that could fail on all aspects of being the president: foreign affairs, economically, socially, militarily, everything but playing golf...

prains's picture

.......aaaaaaah, Cheney!

LMAOLORI's picture



The horses mouth in this case is....

Pierre Omidyar co-funded Ukraine revolution groups with US government, documents show




“… Center UA received more than $500,000 in 2012, according to its annual report for that year, 54 percent of which came from Pact Inc., a project funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development. Nearly 36 percent came from Omidyar Network, a foundation established by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar and his wife. Other donors include the International Renaissance Foundation, whose key funder is billionaire George Soros, and National Endowment for Democracy, funded largely by the U.S. Congress.”

flacon's picture

I can't wait for the ES futures to open up on Sunday. 

Karl von Bahnhof's picture


Fuck the bloody stupid USA ...!

Wahooo's picture

Libya was the tipping point. They fucked that up big time.

ACP's picture

I doubt Putin wants to start a major war, but wants to needle Obonghit. Reminds me of the "show of force" in Georgia.

layman_please's picture

You are exactly right this is not in Putin's interest. He has been forced into using military in crimea as US lead coup has put him into this predicament. Everything implies it's going after US plans. Congrats, you really learned your lesson in Syria!

ACP's picture

Hell, Assad treats people of different religions far better than the al-qaeda shit that the CIA is funding.

One note I'd like to make about Russia's invading force that makes me think Russia is not interesting in a long term occupation and massive violence, is that if you look at some of photos of the soldiers who have landed, many of their ammunition pouches that they are wearing on their tactical gear are empty, which tells me they weren't expecting much of a fight, if any.

Of course, that could be just an indication of "Russian discipline."

layman_please's picture

Not according to the article
" They are fully armed, with 5,000 rounds of ammunition per person "

My previous post was just implying that recent action is a victory for the US(opposed to nope-1004 claims) as Putin was left with no other choice. International community will point fingers at Russia as the aggressor

ACP's picture

Doesn't matter what articles know the media. You gotta look at the photos and make your own decision.

And yes, you're right it could be. Plus, whatever happens is going to be twisted by both sides anyway. I think Putin's invasiopn would be a good jab at Obonghit if he keeps it limited, like the Georgia invasion (pre-Obonghit). Anything more would be disastrous for him. He doesn't have the resources to go any farther, so he'll rely on the psychological effects and the eyes of the Socialist EU turning on spineless Obonghit for direction. Spineless Obonghit will make of fool of himself and even further erode world respect for him.

layman_please's picture

well, the photos are also part of the media, though a bit more objective when not staged.


weak leader per se is not a bad thing. hell, it would be best if all of them would be irrelevant fools so people could mind their business, but...back to reality, most probably the US citizens will pay the price for the president's lack of spine. i feel for you.

Cyrano de Bivouac's picture

True, the Christian community was never persecuted by the Assad regime but they(the Christians) have been victims of atrocities by rebel groups. I don't know who is the main arms suppliers for the rebel-Al Qaida groups but it's not Russia or Iran.

Bonapartist's picture

Gee- I wonder where the rebels are getting their state-of-the-art anti-tank missiles- Uncle Sugar perhaps? liveleak has good vids of some of Assad's tanks getting lit up.

FreedomGuy's picture

Saudi Arabia and the Emirates. That is why they were pissed when Obama-Kerry backed down and diverted after the hard talk.

Cyrano de Bivouac's picture

True, the Christian community was never persecuted by the Assad regime but they(the Christians) have been victims of atrocities by rebel groups. I don't know who is the main arms suppliers for the rebel-Al Qaida groups but it's not Russia or Iran.

FMR Bankster's picture

Saudi's and to a lesser degree other Gulf co-op countries. Small amounts from the US and others. The Saudi's are much more concerned about Iran than Al Qaida. So they have no problems funding Islamic groups, especially now that Bin Ladens gone.

ThirdWorldDude's picture

"...especially now that Bin Laden's ghost is gone."

Fixed it for you. Bin Laden has been dead for a very long time, at least for the last 10 years. Watch former Prime Minister of Pakistan Benazir Bhutto's interview that cost her her life

In general you're right about Syrian terrorists' arms and logistics suppliers - it's maiinly the House of Saud, Qatar and Jordan out of the Gulf c(o)untries that pay for them. The Brits and USSA are paid with petrodollars to provide arms, ammunitions and training; Turkey poses as the pizza-boy, delivering shipments to Al-cia-duh. That's all old news...

What's new is the recently exposed corruption scandals in Turkey and Bandar "Bush" revelations. Erdogan is obviously the weakest link in the chain and it's why he's topped my list of future coups for a long time. Bandar is the one pulling all operational strings and he's surely aware that he must keep a low profile if he wants to avoid a burial at sea. (Mossad is Bandar's telecom provider, so I doubt he's already sleeping with the worms.)

disabledvet's picture

more like a "slow of force."

"sealing off Kiev for the Final Solution" meh?
It will be interesting to see if the President has any Harry Truman in him or not.

One thing that is different is that Berlin was completely surrounded by Russians...not merely "East Berlin."

Kinda strange that the Russians would build a Wall actually.
Was that to keep the Russians in?
Or the Westerners out?

In any case..."back in the Day" it (West Berlin) was quite the Party Palace so i've been told.
Much in the way of "degenerate art" so to speak.

What's next?
maybe a little "New York rock 'n rolla" just for fun too

Puti time!

Independent's picture

No LOVE is to be had for the Crimean Tatars, the slavic people well remember their slavery at the hands of these monsters, just go halfway down on the wiki link and read The Fate of the Captives detailing how Russian and Ukrainian peasants were captured and treated.

Also the Tatars are not indigenous to Crimea, they are invaders



agent default's picture

In my mind, I always associated the Tatars with Mongolia , or something else from the depths of Asia, like the Golden Horde.  I didn't know they had anything to do with Ukraine.

Jack Burton's picture

Mongol Invasion took all of Asia and Europe from China to the borders of Hungry and Rumania. Russia lived under Mongol rule for many years. Tartars are the left overs of the broken up Mongol empire. Been in Crimea since the mongol invasion. They attacked Russia and Ukraine for centuries till Russia defeated them finally and took Crimea. History, that is it in a nutshell.

Independent's picture

Quite true, Genghis Khan is the first one to have created 'Russia' and the concept of a transurasion nation that spanned the shores of the black sea to the pacific.  The Mongols never had sufficient numbers, more than 90 percent of their armies in the west were made up of local conquered turkic tribes, the tatars in Crimea definitely do not look Mongol/asian, as do turkic tribes in central asia.  They are a distinct people from the Mongols and the Turkic peoples of Central Russia

FreedomGuy's picture

The Cossacks are actually remnants. There have been several invasions across the steppes of Russia. The Huns and Mongols were the most famous.

Headbanger's picture

+1000 for being astute about what really matters in such times like these.

It all reverts to tribalism for survival ultimately.

disabledvet's picture

so what does that make the Americans if they decide to show up then?

Volkodav's picture

Head of Russian Central Bank, Elvira Nabullinia, is Tatar descent. Before the appointment to Russian Central Bank position, she was trusted aide of President Putin.

Many Tatar in trade and business. I am aware of several in Volga regions.

These may have been assimilated into Russia for longer time.

I don't know about Crimean Tatars in particular...

Independent's picture

The Crimean Tatars are a breed apart, they have heavy Turkish influence, their khans was appointed by the Ottoman Sultan.  They are unlike the Tatars in Central Russia.

Volkodav's picture

Thanks...I suspected  that, but was not sure enough to state it as fact..

I planned to ask details from friends in Saratov Volga who had told about many Tatar bankers there


pot_and_kettle's picture

Unless I'm very mistaken, I believe tatars are turk-descended.


Strictly anecdotal: I knew a guy 25 years ago or so, identified himself as pure turk, but also as a Crimean tatar.  A little short fused but a very nice guy overall.  Probably didn't know he had bloodsoaked savages in his family tree 5 generations back...


Also, he tells me the tatars absolutely hated and feared the Cossacks ( generic for pretty much any Russian ).


Again, anecdotal and for what it's worth.

Independent's picture

The Cossacks indeed brought fear to the Crimean Tatars, it was the actions of the Crimean Tatars that brought about the creation of the Cossacks as a militia to stop the plunder and killing.  The history in that area is quite rich.  The Cossacks were great sailors, not unlike their Viking ancestors 800 years before, they had a boat not unlike the viking ships, called a chaika which they used to dominate the Rivers in Ukraine and also the Black Sea coastal regions.  They even attacked and plundered suburbs of Istanbul/Costantinople forcing the Turkish Sultan to flee.


Aaronson.Jones.Rutherford's picture

I god-damned love the history lessons I get on ZH (even if it is all potential troll-spin).

Occident Mortal's picture

Nobody fears the US any more.

This is not 2002.

This is not a squinting George W. making loose threats aimed at everyone.

Ten years ago, when the POTUS came out and made demands / threats every government in the world held their breath.

Not any more.

Now POTUS can be safely ignored, US hands are tied with $17 trillion of debt and a congress that wouldn't be able to agree on military action if Pearl Harbour happened tomorrow.

All the US can do these days is deploy half a dozen CIA guys, snoop emails and launch some very low speed drones.

The ability of the US to hold territory is zero, nil, gone.

strannick's picture

The US military is far and away, in a class of its own. The quivering, fey hand holding the sword however...