12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians

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12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Suspilne tells the stories of 12 Russian army instructors. Cуспільне

Businessmen, “atamans”, criminals, convinced Russian nationalists, traitors to Ukraine. We found these people in the list of those whom Russia calls “military specialists” and on whom it has entrusted the mission of training thousands of conscripted Russians. They gained experience in wars in Afghanistan, Chechnya, Georgia, Moldova, Syria and, ultimately, in Ukraine.

The “Suspilne” investigative editorial office received from an anonymous source a list of instructors of the Russian army. This source previously shared with us the correspondence of Dmitry Rogozin, the former director of “Roscosmos” and now the so-called “senator” of the Federation Council of the Russian Federation from the occupied part of Zaporizhzhia region.

The list contains the personal data of 151 “specialists” who train conscripts for the Russian army. There is no public information on their instructor activities in the Russian army, and they themselves hide it. Along with the names of these “military specialists”, we received their contacts, as well as the information about their military specialties, participation in wars and awards.

We verified the document studying the biographies of some of the instructors. Their data in the list turned out to be real. In addition, we managed to communicate with three of them. In the conversations, they confirmed that they were training the military.

This article will tell about 12 instructors of the Russian army. They were chosen not by chance. These are stories about those “specialists” who had the Ukrainian citizenship and betrayed their country, and others not only train, but also fight in the Russian-Ukrainian war.

Ukrainian criminal – Russian "hero"

We found several traitors to Ukraine in the list of instructors. One of them is 48-year-old private Vyacheslav Moskalenko who trains conscripted Russians to operate anti-tank missile systems and heavy anti-tank grenade launchers.

In the list of instructors, it is indicated that Moskalenko participated in the “Donbas” private military company (this is how the document designates terrorists who voluntarily fought in the east of Ukraine in 2014-2022). According to the information in the document, Moskalenko also took part in the attack of the Russian troops on Mariupol in the spring of 2022.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Vyacheslav Moskalenko (on the left). Photo from the Russian social media

Moskalenko is from Kupiansk, Kharkiv region. Currently, he has two citizenships – Russian and Ukrainian. He has not renounced yet the Ukrainian citizenship despite the hatred for Ukraine that he expresses on social media.

A possible reason for his dislike of Ukraine can be his criminal past and a criminal record. According to the information from our sources, in 1999 he committed theft, probably of state property, in particularly large amounts. He was caught and convicted. However, he did not spend much time in prison. Already in 2001, he was released on parole with the ban on leaving the place of residence.

Despite the ban on leaving the place of residence, Moskalenko went to Moscow. Then he was declared wanted in Ukraine and was wanted at least until 2010.

Later, Moskalenko married a Russian woman, Yulia Shpak, settled in Voronezh, and received a Russian passport.

In Voronezh, Moskalenko joined the "Central Cossack Army IV", which is part of the "All-Russian Cossack Society" – an organization that combines imperial views, love for Stalin and Zhukov, Cossack traditions, Orthodoxy and the desire to fight in wars.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Members of the "Cossack Society" with the flag of the Don Cossacks. Moskalenko is on the far right. Photo from the Russian social media

The members of the "Society" have been fighting in Ukraine since 2014. On their social media, we found a photo from the destroyed Donetsk airport, on which their flags were installed.

Judging by posts on social media, Moskalenko started fighting on the side of Russian formations in 2014. At the same time, he managed to visit Kupiansk. We learned from our own sources that in September 2014, Kupiansk police officers found almost a kilogram of cannabis in Moskalenko’s car. In the criminal record about cannabis, it is also stated that earlier the police had been addressed by a man who claimed that Moskalenko and his friend broke into the man’s apartment and robbed him.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Criminal in Ukraine and "Cossack" in Russia. In 2021, Moskalenko took the third place at the shooting competition among the "Cossacks". Photo from the "All-Russian Cossack Society" website

Our investigative team invented a legend and phoned Vyacheslav to find out whether he worked as an instructor. We introduced ourselves as famous Russian propagandists.

According to the invented legend, one of the special units that fights in the Russia-occupied part of Luhansk region gave the propagandist a list of instructors and asked to check if they were willing to work with the military for money.

In the conversation, Vyacheslav confirmed that he was an instructor. The only thing he wanted to know was whom he was supposed to train, "They are probably from the Luhansk People’s Republic, right? Did I teach them?" asked Moskalenko.

A jet pack fan from Alushta

64-year-old Mykola Klochko was born in Bakhmut, but lives in Alushta, Crimea. From his social media, it may seem that Mykola leads a quiet life in a resort town: he is fond of tourism and travelling. However, as it turned out, he works for the Russian army.

According to the information from the list of instructors, Mykola Klochko fought in Afghanistan and was awarded the Soviet "Order of the Red Star" there. Now he teaches conscripted Russians to handle weapons and military tactics. He has the military rank of lieutenant colonel.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Mykola Klochko on the background of the Swallow’s Nest castle in Crimea. Photo from the Russian social media

Almost 20 years ago, Klochko started business in Ukraine. He earned money by renting goods for sports and recreation. In 2012, the Ukrainian mass media wrote about him, "Two men from Alushta looked closely at the jet pack on the Internet, purchased it in Germany and brought it to Ukraine". One of these men was Mykola Klochko; the other was Russian Nikolay Vyugin.

After the purchase of the jet pack, they launched the joint company "Aquaplan", which still exists. For an hour of the jet pack rent, the businessmen charged 600 euros and advertised their business in the media.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Mykola is still a jet pack fan. In February, he posted on the social media the photo with the jet pack at the exhibition in Moscow. Screenshot from the page of Mykola Klochko on the Russian social media

Mykola received the Russian citizenship immediately after the occupation of Crimea in 2014. Since he is still mentioned as a businessman in the Ukrainian registers, we can assume that he has not renounced his Ukrainian citizenship. Moreover, according to the information from our sources, in 2020, Mykola had a valid account in one of the Ukrainian banks.

Since 2017, Klochko has also been officially registered as a Russian entrepreneur. He is engaged in trade, repair work and, as indicated in his activities, rents out premises.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Mykola travels from time to time. In 2023, he and his friend were looking for “two joyful female co-travelers” to go to Dagestan. Screenshot from the Russian tourist site

The only daughter of Mykola Klochko, Yulia, has been living in Qatar for many years. His ex-wife Elena lives in Belarus.

"Russian world" of the traitor to Ukraine Denys Dymchenko

Among the instructors on the list, we found 43-year-old Denys Dymchenko – another traitor to Ukraine from the village of Brylivky, Kherson region. Currently, this village is occupied by Russia.

From the age of 14, Dymchenko lived in St. Petersburg, studied at the Nakhimov naval school, and then at the Lenin Komsomol Higher Navy School.

During the Ukrainian Revolution of Dignity, Dymchenko was a law student at the Vernadsky Tavrida National University and lived in Simferopol. However, despite studying at the Ukrainian university, ideologically he supported the "Russian world", as did his family. Denys’s mother, Svitlana, was a member of the Kherson NGO “Russian Cultural Center".

Dymchenko started fighting against Ukraine in 2014. Before the full-scale invasion, he was a volunteer member of the "Viking" terrorist battalion and, as Russian propagandists stated, headed the reconnaissance company. For this, he received the so-called "Volunteer of Donbas" award.

Russian propagandists interviewed Dymchenko several times. They presented him as an ideological warrior, a pilgrim who dreamed of becoming a monk. "I always knew that I would fight. I saw it in my dreams and was preparing for it," he said.

Dymchenko himself demonstrated his terrorist activities on the social media, until he got on the “Peacemaker" list. Then he deleted the pages that had already been archived by the "Peacemaker".

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Denys Dymchenko is on the left, on the right – Oleksii Sosonnyi, a traitor to Ukraine, who is currently the commander of the "Bars 23" volunteer unit of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian federation. Photo from Dymchenko’s page on the Russian social media, saved in the archive of the "Peacemaker" website

Dymchenko has never renounced his Ukrainian citizenship and even used it. First, according to the information from our sources, in 2020, he still had an account in one of the Ukrainian banks. Second, as we found out, Denys and his family had business in Ukraine. They had "Agro" enterprise registered in Brylivka, Kherson region, which grows and sells grapes. In 2016, Denys, fighting against Ukraine, received the right of signature in this company. His father Serhii is still the co-owner, and his mother Svitlana is the director. The village of Brylivka has been occupied by Russia since 2022.

In addition, Dymchenko was a Russian mercenary in Libya, where the Russian Federation is still trying to strengthen its influence. After the beginning of the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine, he continued to fight together with his notorious friend Sosonnyi as a private in the newly formed unit "Bars 23". Dymchenko, as we learned from the list of instructors, took part in the hostilities in Kharkiv region and at the same time trained the conscripted Russians in shooting.

Dymchenko will no longer fight against Ukraine. In May, the Russian propaganda media reported that he died "while performing a combat mission in the Donetsk direction".

The terrorist was buried in Sevastopol. Judging by the social media, his family live in Crimea and St. Petersburg.

Crimean "little green man"

The next character is a 61-year-old colonel of the Russian army, Vitaly Maksakov. Probably, he is also from Ukraine. On the social media, he indicates Saki in Crimea as his hometown. Previously, Vitaly had a Ukrainian surname – Miroshnychenko, which he changed in 2010.

The Russian propaganda media often mentioned Maksakov. He was described as a "descendant of the Cossacks-Scouts from Rostov" and "ataman of Dolomanovskaya stanitsa". He speaks at "Cossacks" congresses. In one of his speeches about the "bondage of the Russian people", he justified Russia’s wars of aggression.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Maksakov combines Orthodoxy, a Cossack hat, nostalgia for the Soviet union, and a paratrooper’s undershirt. Photo from his social media

In the list of instructors, it is indicated that in 2014-2015, he was an instructor for the so-called "Donetsk People’s Republic militia", and now he teaches conscripted Russians special training and tactics. The man gained skills and combat experience in wars of aggression in Afghanistan, Transnistria, and Ukraine.

Vitaly Maksakov was repeatedly photographed wearing a cap with the inscription "Ryazan – the capital of the airborne forces". Therefore, we make a cautious assumption that he probably served in the 137th Guards Parachute Regiment, which is stationed in Ryazan.

In 2014, as we found out, Maksakov was among the "little green men" who occupied Crimea. At the beginning of March 2014, a Ukrainian journalist of the "Svidomi" bureau filmed a man wearing a cap with the inscription "Ryazan – the capital of the airborne forces" in the premises of the Ukrainian border guards in Crimea. The man in the cap did not want to introduce himself. In a conversation with the journalist, he could not explain what he was doing in the premises of the Ukrainian military unit, denied the military aggression of the Russian Federation and called Crimea his native country.

Ten years ago, this video got hundreds of thousands of views. Only now, we have found out that the Russian military wearing a cap is paratrooper Vitaly Maksakov.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Vitaly Maksakov in the premises of the Ukrainian border guards in Crimea on March 3, 2014. Screenshot from the video on Arthur Welf YouTube channel

Before the occupation of Crimea, Maksakov lived in Rostov-on-Don with his wife Gayane Miroshnychenko and three children. There, he was the director of his "Maksarus" company, headed the "Afganets” Center of Slavic Culture" and was a member of a musical band that glorified the wars waged by the Soviet Union and Russia.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Maksakov’s band poster "Mountain Pass: from Afghanistan to Chechnya". Photo from his social media

After his participation in the occupation of Crimea, Maksakov had business interests in the peninsula. During the first three years after the capture of Crimea by the Russians, he was a co-owner of the construction company "Krym invest Sevastopol stroy". In 2015, he sold five land plots on the Black Sea shore.

He has three children from his first marriage. The eldest son, 30-year-old Ruslan Maksakov became a Ryazan paratrooper like his father and is probably fighting now in Ukraine, because at the beginning of the full-scale war, Vitaly Maksakov wrote an appeal to Putin, in which he called himself "the father of a soldier".

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Vitaly Maksakov with his son Ruslan and ex-wife Gayane. Photo from Maksakov’s social media

Theoretician from St. Petersburg

As indicated in the list of instructors, 67-year-old lieutenant colonel of the Russian army Alexander Stepanov trains conscripted Russians to participate in assault operations and release of hostages. Before that, he taught and organized leisure for cadets and schoolchildren of St. Petersburg.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Alexander Stepanov at the ball with his students. Photo from his social media

Stepanov studied at the Suvorov Military School in Ussuriysk. He devoted his life to the military service. However, if the information from the list of instructors is true, he did not take part in Russia’s wars until 2022. He even wrote scientific papers on the peculiarities of educating cadets.

For many years, Stepanov was the deputy director responsible for educational work in the cadet classes of school No. 364 of the Frunze district of St. Petersburg. He prepared children for future service in the army or law enforcement agencies.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Alexander Stepanov with students. Photo from the Russian social media

We also found out that Stepanov worked at the Novosibirsk Higher Military Command School.

Despite the fact that he calls himself on the social media "retired", in 2022-2023, according to the information from the list of instructors, he fought against Ukraine in the territory of Donetsk region.

Ex-Wagner mercenary trains Russians to use explosives

Judging by his social media, 63-year-old junior sergeant Zhanbulat Karabayev from the Russian resort town of Sol-Iletsk loves his wife, grandchildren, and traveling. In addition, he is fond of mines and other explosive devices. He trains the Russian military to lay mines, as well as to use drones and pinpoint artillery fire. Karabayev acquired theoretical knowledge at the Ryazan Airborne Command School, and practical knowledge – in Russia’s wars.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Zhanbulat Karabayev. Photo from the Russian social media

We phoned Zhanbulat, introducing ourselves as Russian propagandists looking for specialists to train FPV drone operators in the occupied Luhansk region. Our conversation proved that he knows the peculiarities of this matter and continues to fight in Ukraine.

"I am on vacation now. Soon I will return to my unit again, to the eighth brigade, also in Luhansk," – said Zhanbulat, thinking that he was talking to a Russian propagandist, and asked to give his phone number to those who are interested in his work as an instructor.

The eighth brigade mentioned by him is, most likely, the 8th Guards Motorized Brigade of the Russian Federation, known for its participation in the battles near Ilovaisk back in 2014.

Zhanbulat fought in Ukraine long before the full-scale invasion. Earlier, he posted on the social media a photo in military uniform. He also posted a photo of the "temporary ID card of the Luhansk People’s Republic", from which it is clear that in 2017 Karabayev was an assistant shooter in a grenade launcher crew in an illegal armed formation – the so-called "people’s militia of the Luhansk People’s Republic".

According to the “Peacemaker” information, in 2017 Karabayev had the call sign “Old one” and was a member of the so-called “Union of Donbas Volunteers”. Now he has the call sign “Zhan”. He himself told about this on the social media.

Probably, Zhanbulat was a mercenary in "Wagner" private military company because he has the black and silver crosses "awards". Only Wagner mercenaries were awarded with such crosses. In addition, on the social media, Zhanbulat is in contact with many former mercenaries of the Wagner PMC, including the liquidated propagandist Vladlen Tatarskyi.

The war in Ukraine is not the first war for Zhanbulat. He also fought in Syria, for which he received the Russian "For the victory over ISIS" medal.

It can be seen on Zhanbulat’s social media that he is happy with his work: he constantly makes posts about the war, explosive devices, and shares photos of Ukrainian bridges destroyed by the Russians.

Karabayev’s wife, 55-year-old Lilia Musina, is a former nurse and now a realtor. We learned from her social media that in recent years she often traveled with her husband, despite his military service.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Karabayev with his wife and son Timur. Photo from the social media

Zhanbulat and Lilia have sons Timur and Artur, daughter Guzalya Kochaganova, and at least two little grandchildren.

Ex-military commissar of Crimea teaches how to conscript

The next character on our list is 68-year-old retired colonel Anatoly Maloletko. He also turned out to be a Ukrainian. "I graduated from the school run by famous teacher Vasyl Sukhomlynskyi," he said in one of the interviews. This school is in the village of Pavlyshi, Kirovohrad region. Maloletko has relatives there.

According to Maloletko, he joined the military at the age of 16. First, he studied at the Moscow Higher Military Command School, then served in the Soviet army in Germany, and fought in Afghanistan.

Until 2008, Maloletko was the head of the mobilization department of the Far Eastern Military District of the Russian Federation. At the age of 58, working as an engineer for Gazprom, he received an offer to become the first occupation military commissar of Crimea.

"I am afraid to even think about leaving the service," said Maloletko in that position.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Anatoly Maloletko. RIA Novosti

At the end of October 2014, he and his wife Valentina sold their apartment in Khabarovsk and moved to Simferopol.

Maloletko headed the Crimean military commissariat for almost three years. In the spring of 2015, he became the organizer of one of Russia’s biggest crimes in the occupied peninsula – the conscription of Crimean residents into the Russian army. The involvement of citizens of an occupied country in the armed forces of the aggressor country is a violation of the Geneva Convention "On the Protection of the Civilian Persons in Time of War". The UN also forbade conscripting Crimean residents into the armed forces of the Russian Federation.

According to the information of the “CrimeaSOS” project, by the order of Anatoly Maloletko, from November 2015 Crimean residents who did not register for the military service were to be brought to administrative responsibility.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
In Crimea, Maloletko became a "star" speaker for the Russian propaganda – he told Russians about the queues to serve in the Russian army. Screenshot from the Russian propaganda media "Gazeta.ru"

"Young people are rushing to join the Russian army", "There are no draft dodgers in Crimea", "100% of conscripts came to the commissariat", "There was only one dodger in the whole Crimea, and even he turned out to be an inadequate person" – such headlines with reference to Maloletko were disseminated by the Russian propaganda in the first years of occupation.

Then, Maloletko began to comment on various military events, such as the regular training of the Russian army in Crimea or the stationing of a new military contingent in the peninsula.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
From left to right: Anatoly Kostenko, the occupation military commissar of Feodosia, Sergey Aksyonov, the traitor to Ukraine and the head of the occupation administration of Crimea, Anatoly Maloletk. Photo from the Russian social media

In almost three years, Maloletko got a house in Crimea, which he boasted about on the social media.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Maloletko's house in Crimea. Screenshot from the page of Anatoly Maloletko on the Russian social media

Our sources from Crimea claim that this house is probably located on the southern coast of the peninsula because the photo shows Lebanese cedars, which grow only in this part of Crimea. The most expensive real estate is located there.

After his dismissal from the position of the military commissar in 2017, Maloletko did not leave Crimea. According to the information from the list of instructors, he is registered in Simferopol. However, after his resignation, he almost disappeared from the information space. Sometimes he appears in propaganda news as an ex-military commissar or a retired colonel, but not as an instructor of the Russian army.

In the list of instructors that we received, it is stated that Maloletko is the commander of the raiding battalion. Therefore, he is probably training the officials of the military commissariats to conscript.

He had two unsuccessful election attempts: to the State Duma in 2007 and to the Khabarovsk city Duma in 2009. Both failed.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
According to Maloletko, his wife Valentina also served in the army. She is also an ethnic Ukrainian from the village of Osytniazhki in Kirovohrad region. Photo from the social media

Their daughter Oksana Nenasheva lives with her husband, son and daughter in Blagoveshchensk, Amur region. “The son-in-law is a military man, the daughter also serves [in the army], and the grandson studies at the Bauman Lyceum in Moscow. I hope he will continue the family path. The granddaughter is still little,” said Anatoly Maloletko in 2017.

Scout Sergey was in Syria and lost a friend in Ukraine

27-year-old private Sergey Novichikhin from the town of Georgievsk dreamed of the military service from his childhood. When he turned 18, he started to post photos on the social media in a military uniform and with fellow servicemen. The war in Ukraine is the second war for Sergey. The first was in Syria in 2018.

On his social media, Novichikhin joked that he missed the Syrian desert and boasted about the award from the Russian Ministry of Defense, which he received for his participation in Russia’s military invasion of Syria.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Novichikhin’s medal. Screenshot from his page on the Russian social media

Now Novichikhin is fighting in Ukraine. It is known from the list of instructors that he took part in the hostilities in Kharkiv region.

We found out from his social media that he is a scout. Now Sergey trains Russian soldiers to be scouts.

Judging by the chevrons on the military uniforms of Sergei and his fellows, he served in the 205th motorized “Cossack” brigade, which was involved in the blowing up of the Kakhovka dam.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Sergey with his fellow servicemen, probably in Ukraine. Screenshot from Sergey Novichikhin’s social media

Last year, on the social media, he mourned the death of his friend Maksim, also a Russian occupier who died while fighting in Ukraine. In a post about the results of the year, Novichikhin was glad that he himself remained alive.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Sergey Novichikhin's page in the Russian social media. Screenshot

Karate fighter who found his love in Donetsk

60-year-old Major of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the USSR Pavel Andreev, according to the list of instructors, trains conscripted Russians in general military combat, sabotage and reconnaissance.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
On his social media, Pavel Andreev states that he is an intelligence officer. Photo from his social media

Andreev is from the city of Grozny. He studied at the Faculty of Physical Training at the Grozny Oil Technical College. He is the only instructor from the list whose biography is publicly available. For some time, Andreev worked in private companies and combined this with activities in sports clubs. He is a candidate for master of sports in karate and a referee of the international category in Shotokan karate style.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Pavel Andreev at the international tournament. Photo from his social media

However, we are interested in his military service, not in sports

Every year, Andreev attends the meetings of Russian paratroopers and, judging by what he posts on the social media, he is proud to be one of them. As we found out, he got his first combat experience in Afghanistan, as part of the Soviet 783rd separate reconnaissance battalion, which no longer exists. This battalion had only one paratrooper company – the third reconnaissance-paratrooper company. Probably, Pavel served in it.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Pavel Andreev (second from the right) with the traitor to Ukraine, terrorist Serhii Li (on the right in the photo), and others celebrate the paratroopers’ day. Photo from Andreev’s social media

Andreev is on the list of the “Peacemaker” website, according to which he probably participated in the occupation of Ukrainian Crimea. He was also a member of illegal armed formations in Donetsk region. Among Andreev’s contacts on the social media, there are many athletes, Russian military, politicians and traitors to Ukraine.

After researching public information about Andreev, we concluded that he had moved from Moscow to Donetsk at the beginning of the war in eastern Ukraine.

In 2015, Andreev, wearing a military uniform and paratrooper undershirt, took part in “charity actions” – delivering humanitarian aid to the residents of the occupied villages in Luhansk and Donetsk regions. People in the occupied territories were photographed with this humanitarian aid.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
August 2015. Andreev, together with other veterans of Afghanistan and members of the separatist community “Strong-polite-kind”, brought toys to children in Luhansk region and filmed this. Screenshot from the video of the “SVD Planeta” channel on YouTube

In Donetsk, Andreev joined the illegal armed formation of the so-called “Republican Guard of the Donetsk People’s Republic”, which the Russians call an “elite” unit. This unit is involved in various tasks, including reconnaissance and paratrooper assault operations.

At the new place of residence, Pavel also established a new personal life. Now he is in his third marriage. His new wife is 38-year-old Ukrainian Olena Nikolaieva from Makiivka.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Every year, Andreyev and his wife Olena attend paratroopers’ meetings in Donetsk. Photo from Andreev’s social media

Andreev has two daughters. Younger Varvara lives with her mother in Moscow, and the elder daughter, 37-year-old Anna Deryugina, lives in Krasnoyarsk.

According to the information from the list of instructors, Pavel Andreev participates in the full-scale war in Ukraine. In 2022, he stated on the social media that there was a bad connection in the area where he was.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Later, Pavel launched a business selling Russian SIM cards. Judging by the activity of customers on the social media, Andreev’s business is successful. Screenshot from his page on the Russian social media

We phoned Andreev with the same legend. In the conversation, Pavel did not deny his instructor activities; he confirmed that he was in service in the occupied territory of Donetsk region. However, he refused our “offer” to work as an instructor in the territory of the occupied Luhansk region and explained why, “I live in the “Donetsk People’s Republic” and I am currently in service. I will not leave my service here. It is stupid”.

Signal corps serviceman from Moldova

25-year-old private Artem Korshkov has been fighting in Ukraine since 2022. According to the information from the list of instructors, he participated in the offensive in Kharkiv region.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Artem Korshkov. Photo from the Russian social media

In the Russian army, Artem is a senior mechanic-telephone operator. His responsibilities include the provision of communication lines and working with equipment. This is what he teaches the Russian conscripts.

Artem was born in Moldova, probably in the city of Bender. In the 2000s, his family moved to Moscow. At the age of 18, Artem went to the military service. His grandmother Aleksandra Chorna came to the dedication ceremony from the Russia-occupied Transnistria.

With the photos that she posted on the social media, we found out that her grandson served in the 38th Guards Command Brigade. This brigade is a tactical unit of the airborne forces of the Russian Federation and is stationed in the village of Medvezhi Ozera near Moscow.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Artem Korshkov with his grandmother Aleksandra. Photo from her social media

Before the full-scale invasion, Korshkov worked as a loader and engineer at different companies, including MTS mobile operator and the Russian Federal Tax Service.

In open sources, we found more recent photos of Korshkov. On these photos, he is in a military uniform, with a white elbow bandage and a gun. On Artem’s uniform, there is the chevron of the 38th Guards Command Brigade. We assume that he is still fighting in Ukraine as part of this unit.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Korshkov is wearing the shevron of the 38th brigade. Photo from Korshkov’s social media

Ataman from Krasnodar

48-year-old senior sergeant Igor Zubarev from Krasnodar conducts tactical training for Russian conscripts – this is what the list of instructors says.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Igor Zubarev. Photo from the Russian social media

He, like some other people on the list, combines instructor activities and war with membership in the “Cossack Society”. Zubarev is not a simple member of it, but the ataman of the “Khutor Cossack community Georgievskoye” in Krasnodar region.

Zubarev’s “Cossack community” supports Russia’s imperial policy and spreads Russian propaganda. The activity of the “community” consists in the organization of military and patriotic education, educational trainings, including military training.

Zubarev pays a lot of attention to the "patriotic education" of young people. He was the founder of two youth organizations in Krasnodar: “Vympel” and “Military Patriotic Society “Ros”.

Zubarev is also the head of the “Pashkovsky” agricultural consumer cooperative. In the past, he worked as the technical policy deputy chair of the board of the state company “Russian Highways” and was the founder of the “Kubangruzstroy” company.

In the 1990s, he fought in the First Russian-Chechen War, for which he received the “For Courage” medal. According to the information from the list of instructors, he also participated in the Russian-Ukrainian war, although he does not talk about it publicly.

Igor has a wife, 45-year-old Svetlana Zubareva, and a son, 22-year-old Yaroslav Zubarev.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Ярослав Зубарєв (праворуч на фото) бере участь у параді у Краснодарі 9 травня 2022 року. bloknot-krasnodar.ru

Tank crewmember who got education in Kharkiv

53-year-old Colonel Rustam Rakhmatov is a tank crewmember. According to the information from the list of instructors, he trains conscripted Russians to operate Soviet “T-64” and “T-72” tanks.

There is little public information about him, but we managed to find out that he is from Chkalovsk in Tajikistan. He lives in Russia in the city of Sochi.

12 instructors of the invaders: who trains conscripted Russians
Rustam Rakhmatov. Photo from his social media

Rustam received his military education in Ukraine, against which he is currently fighting. In his social media, he notes that in 1987-1992 he studied at the faculty of military training at the Kharkiv Guards Higher Tank Command of the Order of the Red Star of the Supreme Rada of the Ukrainian SSR School. Currently, the school is called the “Military Institute of Tank Troops”.

At the beginning of the full-scale invasion, the Russians shelled Rustam’s alma mater with heavy artillery.

In the civilian life, Rustam was a guard of the highest sixth rank, which gives the right to use firearms and work in the most dangerous places.

In addition, as stated in the list of instructors, Rustam has the Russian “Order of Courage” award. It is awarded to soldiers and civilians who “showed dedication, courage and bravery in maintaining public order”, the description of the order says.

This is the end of our story about the instructors of the Russian army. Our source, who provided the list of these “experts”, wanted them to become known because they can outlive their trainees, who die every day in Ukraine, and remain in the shadows after the war, without bearing any responsibility for what they have done.

For all those who want to research the biographies of the rest of the “military specialists of the Russian Federation”, we leave open the table with their list.

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