Preamble: I never had a brother. Here is the brother I wish I had. In fighting for the future of Novorossiya, I would treasure it if he considered me to be of his blood, across the ocean. As I do him.
Note: Videos w/subtitles in the following order: English, German, French
Video: Interview with an Afghan Militiaman of the Donetsk People’s Republic, July 13, 2014
English-language subtitles prepared by Marcel Sardo
Video: Warum ich hier kämpfe: ein Afghane in Donetzk – DE UT (@ and Marcel Sardo)
Video: Un combattant de liberté afghan dans Donbass – Sous-titres Français (Marcel Sardo)
Translated from Russian by Valentina Lisitsa (@ValLisitsa) / Editing by Gleb Bazov & @GBabeuf
Afghan Volunteer: I’m Afghan, an ethnic Afghan. I came here of my own good will. Many’ll say: “What’s he doing here, go away, mind your own business, blah blah blah and so on.”
The fact of the matter is that what happened in Ukraine also happened in our country too. About 36 years ago. Our country was divided into two camps; one was helped by the Soviet Union; the other—by the entire world, with the USA in the lead. It so happened that we lost that war, and the results are clear.
Look at what happened to Afghanistan—look how many people died. And to add insult to injury, the ones America helped back then—America later automatically counted them as “separatists” [laughing]. That’s it. And almost all of them have perished.
I ended up in the Soviet Union in ’85, through a bilateral agreement between her and Afghanistan. I graduated from Boarding School #9 in the city of Volgograd. Essentially, I got a solid Soviet education, a Soviet upbringing. And now, if everyone starts saying: “He’s pro-Russian, pro-this, pro-that,” trust me—in reality, we’ve had very serious problems with the new democratic Russian authorities. They treated us like strangers…
I’m not here for the Russian government or for any other government. I’m here for the Slavs, for these people, the friendliest people—a people who are nevertheless targeted for extermination. We [the Afghans] were “dealt with”? Not quite. But they’re almost done “dealing” with us, and now they’ve come to do the same with the Slavs. And this is where they must be stopped.
You see, the real crux of the matter is that all those people who think that they’re supporting the right cause, they’re being shown atrocities, they’re being shown that people wearing St. George ribbons are raping and murdering; that they kill people. This is sabotage. They’re being shown this. They watch it and, believing what they’ve been shown, they come and attack us. They come up against us, and they think that their side’s the right one.
The same thing—the very same—was done in Afghanistan. Exactly the same, like a carbon copy. Understand? And now the problem’s no longer whether they’re good or bad. The problem’s that they remain ignorant of the evil they carry on their shoulders. They know not what they do.
Question: Tell us please, how much do you get paid here?
Afghan Volunteer: [laughing] They pay me so much that I have to bum cigarettes! I’m here of my own free will. I don’t kill people for money. I don’t kill people for money. I’m here by myself.
My comrades fighting at my side: they’re Ossetians, Russians, Cossacks, Kalmyks, Yakuts—an entire family of the Soviet Union’s fighting alongside me! We’re the union of tribes, as it used to be, understand? And Ukrainians are here with us too!
You can’t split people like that! It’s not as if we came and started it at all. You can’t say: “Oh, you all came here and that’s when the mischief started. Nobody wants you here.” They [the Americans] don’t want anybody here, not the Slavs, not anyone! These Ukrainians who forgot their roots, they no longer consider themselves to be Slavs. But even they’ll have no place here! The need slaves here! They need those types like the Eurovision winners—and if you’re like that, you’ll sit pretty, you’ll have a home here. No one else’ll be tolerated. Trust me: just look at how it was done in Afghanistan!
Question: So they will do the same here as they did in Afghanistan?
Afghan Volunteer: [laughing] With the Slavs they’ll do much worse. Because the Slavs, they’re that layer which carries its own civilization, its own civilizational imperative. And at its root, [this imperative] is contrary to all this business, contrary to all this world domination. They don’t want the Slavs, understand? They don’t want their spirit. You understand? That’s how it is.
Now they say that we’re nothing but paid mercenaries. But it’s completely the opposite—[laughing] the Ukrainian side tried to hire me, saying: “We pay well, come to our side.” But the fact of the matter is that I’m a Muslim, and I don’t kill people for money. Understand?
It’s written in the Qur’an that if something bad’s happening somewhere, you must act against it. It’s written in the Qur’an that one should never act for money—yeah, one’s allowed to trade. One can trade, buy and sell, but only within permitted limits. One’s forbidden from doing low, disgusting things—like the things they do. And that’s why I’m here.
It’s long been expected. It’s long been expected—and there’s in principle nothing surprising in the fact—that certain Muslims are taking the side of the Slavs now. That’s because the world’s split into two camps, and small countries, small states—they can’t live on their own any longer. They have to pick sides. The have to stick with others, and the choice isn’t that wide. Either the Slavs, or America, along with Britain.
And there are other people, who say: “Look, there’s Syria, there’s Iraq.” But there, both the government and the opposition are nothing but marionettes in the hands of the same master; nothing more. And this idea of Jihad that’s been brought to life in the Middle East—of course it’s obvious who they work for. You understand?
Moving on. I was also told that there’s a very charming female journalist from Echo of Moscow [radio station] who portrays things as if—she’s been talking about how, supposedly, “radical Islam” was, for some reason, somehow, nurtured by Russia in some way. But the fact is that on the Ukrainian side there are mercenaries killing people for money—and she conveniently forgot to mention this. She doesn’t talk about them! Naturally it’s obvious who pulls her strings. It’s obvious who pays the piper where our journalists are concerned.
We were just recently in Donetsk; we went to a store, and the owner says to us: “Guys, there’s no need to pay! Take anything, take it for free! You’re our only defenders! You’re good guys! Keep defending us. You’re the best!” But we can’t accept things for free. It’s our obligation to pay.
We have to show that we’re neither looters, nor killers, nor robbers. We don’t expect preferential treatment; we don’t cause disorder. We’re here, and we want everyone to know that we’ve come here to defend this very land—to safeguard it from the evil brought on the shoulders of those pro-Westerners.
I’d like to say that our land is still plentiful in strong men. The time’s come to pay our debts. When I came to study in the USSR I was fed three times a day—I had so much food that five kids [back in Afghanistan] could have stuffed themselves with as much. Time’s come for me to pay this debt.
A long, long time ago, my father—he died in Afghanistan. He was murdered by servants of the Americans. Now it’s time for me—his son—to fight their dogs. And that’s all.
I’d like to say this: “Don’t worry, we’re all with you, you have all of us—Russians, Ossetians, Chechens, Afghans—we’re all here, right beside you, like one big family.”