Monday, September 06, 2004

Russian woman forced to make Sophie's choice in Beslan hostage drama: "When Alan began to cry from hunger, Dzandarova was allowed to join several other mothers in an adjacent room, which had its own water and was several degrees cooler.

"After a former local political leader visited the school Thursday, the women in the adjacent room were told there was "good news": They would be released. "They said, 'Pack your things quickly, and take your babies with you,' " Dzandarova said.

"Shortly after, she learned that she would have to choose between taking her son or her daughter. Dzandarova had both Alan and Alana with her and made a snap decision to pass Alana to her 16-year-old sister-in-law. But the guerrillas saw through the ruse and refused to allow her to take the older child.

""Alana was clinging to me and holding my hand firmly. But they separated us, and said: 'You go with the boy. Your sister can stay here with her.' I cried. I begged them. Alana cried. The women around us wept. One of the Chechens said: 'If you don't go now, you don't go at all. You stay here with your children … and we will shoot all of you.' "

"She couldn't save both of them. She could only die with both of them — or save one of them and herself. "I didn't have time to think what I was doing," she said. "I pressed Alan even stronger to myself, and I went out, and I heard all the time how my daughter was crying and calling for me behind my back. I thought my heart would break into pieces there and then.""

Commenting on this story, bellatrys says: "I think that sochkiyi suin Putin may be afraid, at last, to exploit any more. The stories that he had his old KGB buddies help start the war with the initial Moscow bombings that were supposed to be by Chechen rebels are pretty well entrenched, true or not they're at least believed and told even by Muscovite officers, and everyone knows (in Europe at least) that he has prolonged and used the war to keep himself popular as the strong protector, and attention off his bad policies and increasing old-style tyranny.

"For the first two years it worked pretty well, but I hear it's been wearing gradually thin, his Forever War popularity, and the increasing blowback for the decades of slaughter (over 70,000 Chechen dead) may undo him. This is our future, you realize, if PNAC gets their way."

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