Russia's BOAK Partisans Act to Undermine Moscow's War on Ukraine
Since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24th, 2022, there has been an eruption of partisan activity in Russia itself, most of which has consisted of low-level sabotage and arson attacks, but which is becoming increasingly sophisticated and organized. At the core of this partisan campaign is an anarcho-communist guerrilla group with a notable capability for clandestine direct action, the projection of their message internationally, and coordination with like-minded dissidents.
From the saboteurs, there have been numerous videos posted to encrypted social media applications like Telegram, which show individuals and small groups attacking military enlistment offices and recruitment centers with Molotov cocktails in the middle of the night, igniting incendiary devices in the wheel wells of “Z” vehicles, experimenting with homemade explosives, attacking infrastructure such as electrical cabinets, and sabotaging train tracks leading to and from Russian military bases. Russian intelligence themselves claim to have thwarted multiple sabotage efforts by both Russian citizens as well as Ukrainians who allegedly crossed the border to attack targets in Russia. In one instance, the FSB says it stopped a Russian citizen, who they allege was trained by Ukrainian intelligence, from detonating a powerful homemade explosive device along a prominent natural gas pipeline. Many of these FSB claims are dubious, but Russian women and men have truly been taking tremendous risks to their lives and freedom by fighting the authorities and attempting to hobble Russia’s war effort in Ukraine.