Mercenaries, Occupiers with a long record, and “Unknown Soldiers”: Who acted as extras at Putin’s New Year’s greetings

There is a lot of conspiracy on the net about the men in military uniforms who stood behind Putin in his New Year’s address. The blonde was recognized as a woman who often appears on camera during the trips of the “president of the Russian Federation,” sometimes disguised as an ice cream maker, then a fisherwoman, then a pilgrim, or a lawmaker. It turned out that it wasn’t her, so we decided to check out the rest of the crowd and see who the mercenaries were.

Mercenaries, Occupiers with a long record and

Mercenaries, Occupiers with a long record, and “Unknown Soldiers”: Who acted as extras at Putin’s New Year’s greetings

Federal Protective Service, actors or war criminals? Who really acted as a backdrop for Putin’s New Year’s greeting

The Russian dictator’s New Year’s Eve speech hardly surprised anyone by its meaning. The usual set of propaganda clichés and senile idiocy sounded. However, the attention of the sophisticated audience was attracted by the unusual background of the greeting. Вместо башен Кремля за его спиной выстроили массовку в форме армии рф.

By the way, the appeal was such a failure that the next
Putin’s statement
– about the beginning of the “Christmas truce,” which took place without a crowd and without any video at all, the text just poured into Telegram – afraid of “Makeyevka 2.0” because of the alkali mobs? Well, his holidays are going frankly badly: the AFU is successfully disposing of hordes of occupants near Bakhmut, a couple of hundred “mobiks” in Makiivka were hit by a “bavonna”, so a new wave of mobilization is doomed to failure. So soon there will be no one to reward.


But back to the New Year’s Eve crowd. Naturally, discussions about the personalities of these people flared up online. With the help of several media outlets, the opinion has taken root that these are specially selected employees of the Federal Protective Service. The woman standing on Putin’s right hand was recognized as a longtime “heroine” in propaganda footage featuring Russia’s top officials.

All these theories should be respected, but the reality was much more prosaic. On December 31, the Kremlin dwarf visited the headquarters of the Southern Military District (SMD) and presented awards to the Russian military. They are standing behind Putin in the New Year video.

Of course, these are not random people. We all remember that the “president of the rf” had an acute phase of paranoia at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. He is isolated from living people as much as possible, and standing next to the “body of the first” is allowed only to those who have passed strict quarantine and passed all the necessary tests. This, apparently, is the reason why the crowd’s faces are far from festive.

By the way, it’s funny that the background for Putin, judging by all appearances, carefully selected the scriptwriters, because not all of the awardees were in the frame. Of the 24 people who were extras in the congratulations, only four national minorities representatives were allocated a quota, although significantly more “non-Russian” military received orders and medals.

It would seem that there is nothing more to talk about, but a superficial googling turned up a lot of interesting details about these characters. It is worth noting that most of them changed their names in social networks, closed their profiles or deleted them altogether. But he who seeks, he will always find. Hyperlinks on the names lead to their personal pages.


Major Volkov Yevgeny Alekseyevich

Volkov is a career military man. He has been involved in the invasion of Ukraine since August 2014, when he was commander of the 2nd Tank Company of the 136th Independent Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 58th Army (Buynaksk, Republic of Dagestan). He continued his criminal activity with the beginning of the so-called “special military operation”, for which he received the Order of Courage. Resides Volkov in the city of Kirov, together with his wife Alisa (nee Anamova) and their young daughter.

Senior Lieutenant Alexander Gvozderov

Graduated from the school in Torkhan rural settlement (Chuvash Republic) in 2012. Then he joined the army, where he probably studied to be a combat helicopter pilot. Judging by the photos in social networks, he serves in the Navy Air Corps or the Marines. He was awarded the Order of Courage for his participation in the “special military operation”. Resides Volkov in Shumerlya, Chuvash Republic, where his father owns a farm.

Major Dmitry Miron

A native of Moldova, he was born September 28, 1993. Served in the military unit No. 1045 (Comrat, ATU Gagauzia, Moldova). He joined the “LPR” terrorists when he was 19 years old and started in the “Phantom” of Alexey Mozgovoy. Now he commands a reconnaissance company of the 7th Independent Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 2nd Army Corps (Bryanka, Luhansk Region). Myron received the Order of Courage for his participation in “special military operation” and the title of “LPR Hero,” after which he appeared in one of the stories of propagandist Alexander Kots.

Private Mikhailenko Anatoly Igorevich

He lived in Donetsk before the occupation and remained there after the terrorists seized power. He was a musician and had nothing to do with the army until 2022. At the end of 2021 Mikhailenko stopped being active in social networks, apparently hiding from the general “mobilization”, but unsuccessfully. He was not only “taken to the Moskals,” but under the cameras he was awarded the Order of Courage for his participation in the “special military operation” – that is, he legalized his involvement in the war crime, which will not go unnoticed in The Hague.

Lieutenant Colonel Smerdov Anatoly Vladimirovich

He is listed as deputy commander of the 138th Independent Guards Motorized Rifle Brigade (village of Kamenka, Vyborg District, Leningrad Region). He became “famous” in the media after he threatened conscripted soldier to “knock out his teeth”, “hit him over the head with a buttstock” and “put him in a pit” for refusing to participate in the “special military operation”. Apparently this is why he was awarded the Order of Courage.

Senior Lieutenant Yuri Viktorovich Schneider

He was born on June 17, 1996. He graduated from Ryazan Higher Airborne Command School, now lives in Krasnoyarsk and serves in the Southern Military District. Schneider was also awarded the Order of Courage for his participation in the “special military operation”.

Major Yusupov Shamil Muradovich

Born January 03, 1984. He participated in the occupation of Crimea in 2014 with the rank of corporal, as a senior gunner of the 1st reactive artillery platoon, 18th Independent Motorized Rifle Brigade (Kalinovskaya and Khankala St., Republic of Chechnya). At the beginning of the full-scale invasion of Ukraine by the Russian Federation Yusupov was a calculator of the howitzer self-propelled artillery battalion in the 136th Independent Motorized Rifle Brigade of the 58th Army (military unit 63354). He was awarded the Order of Courage for killing civilians and destroying civilian infrastructure.

Lieutenant Colonel Farid Gafiyatovich Abdrazakov

Born March 28, 1978. He graduated from Tyumen School No. 50 in 1995 and after that from Tyumen Military Engineering University. In 2019, he stood trial for violating anti-corruption laws, but the case was dismissed “due to the insignificance of the offense”. Now Abdrazakov serves as deputy commander of the 12th Separate Engineering Brigade (military unit 63494, c. Alkino-2), lives in the city of Ufa, Republic of Bashkortostan. He was awarded the Suvorov Medal, the Medal for Distinguished Military Service, First Class, and the Order of Military Merit.

Lieutenant Ivan Alekseevich Pazliev

Born on August 16, lives in Sevastopol. A graduate of the Stavropol Presidential Cadet School, where he was placed by his father, Alexei Pazliev, a captain of the 1st rank, head of the training center for junior officers of the Navy, a participant in the 2008 invasion of Georgia by the Russian Federation. Pazliev-Jr. received the Order for Merit to the Fatherland, First Class, apparently also thanks to his father’s connections.

Petty Officer Inga Aleksandrovna Tsarukaeva

She was born on February 01, 1989. She lives in Vladikavkaz and serves in the Southern Military District. For what services she received the Suvorov Medal – one can only guess.

Private Alexander Amelin

Perhaps the most mediatized “hero” of this material. Born February 16, 1987, graduated from school No. 4 in the city of Kasimov, Ryazan region. Amelin went to fight against Ukraine as a “volunteer” in November 2022, serving in the BARS “Kaskad” reconnaissance unit, which consists of deputies of the State Duma and legislative assemblies in the regions. Before that, he was curator of the St. Petersburg branch of the Volunteer Company and head of the Central Headquarters of the Young Guard of the United Russia. Resides Amelin in the city of Moscow with his wife, Irina Amelina, and daughter Alice. Maintains pages on
and a channel on
. He received the Order of Courage for his participation in the “special military operation”.

Lieutenant Denis Anosov

He was born on July 21, 1995. He serves in the Southern Military District and lives in Kaliningrad. Anosov enjoys outdoor activities and sports. What motivated him to go to a foreign country to kill women, old people and children is unclear. As a reward for lost conscience, health, and, quite possibly, life Anosov received the Order of Courage.

Major General Kornev Alexander Vladimirovich

He was born on July 02, 1977. Graduated from Ryazan Higher Airborne Command School in 1999. He served in command positions from paratrooper platoon commander to the chief of staff of the airborne division. In 2015, Kornev graduated from the Combined Arms Academy of the Russian Armed Forces. He has combat experience, took part in the punitive operation in the North Caucasus. He currently serves as commander of the 7th Guards Airborne Assault Division (Novorossiysk, Krasnodar Territory) and lives in a dormitory in the village of Novy Dom, Kostroma Region. Instead of normal housing, the major general received a medal of the Order of Alexander Nevsky for the holidays.

Captain Sidorenko Anna Sergeevna

The most contrarian character on this list. After Putin’s New Year address was aired, social network users decided that the woman behind him was Larisa Sergukhina, the “heroine” of many propaganda videos featuring the Kremlin midget. At various times she was an ice cream maker, a fisherwoman, and a pilgrim. But an in-depth analysis of the appearance, as well as the voices on the videos prove that these are still two different women. Sidorenko is a real person. She graduated from Gymnasium No. 1 of Blagoveshchensk in 1999, received a higher education in the Amur State Medical Academy, specializing in “medical business”. Resides Sidorenko in the city of Blagoveshchensk together with her daughter, and now heads the medical service of the 71st Motorized Rifle Regiment (in the military unit 16544, Kalinovskaya Station, Chechen Republic). She received the Order of Courage for her participation in “special military operation”.

Corporal Timofey Aleksandrovich Matveev

Born in 2002. Graduated from school in the village of Yekaterino-Nikolskoye, Jewish Autonomous District, then studied at the Polytechnic College in Birobidzhan. He serves as a mechanic-driver of the T-72BZ tank of a separate tank battalion of the 76th Airborne Assault Division, lives in the village of Stolbovoye. Matveev Awarded the title of Hero of Russia “for repeated displays of courage and heroism”. But the real pride of his parents, Tatiana and Alexander Matveyev, will be only after he comes home in a black sack and they get a white Lada.

Lieutenant Valentina Vladimirovna Korolenko

She was born in 1993. She graduated from the Military Medical Academy and was often featured in propaganda stories as the winner of competitions for military medics. She is currently listed in the medical service of the 76th Airborne Assault Division and lives in the city of Bataisk, Rostov Oblast. Korolenko was awarded the Medal for Saving the Fallen, although the tactical medicine of the “second army of the world,” as practice has shown, often ends up finishing off its own wounded.

Senior Lieutenant Sumiya Dandaa Akaa Oglu (Sergeyevich)

Born March 04, 1996. The place of residence in the social networks indicates St. Petersburg. Exact details of the duty station Dandaa not available at the moment, but he was congratulated on receiving the Order of Courage for his participation in the “special military operation” by the head of the Tuva regional public organization “Veterans of Special Forces,” which includes former and active fighters of the Rosgvardiya.

Colonel Shishkin Vitaly Andreevich

He was born on March 24, 1982. Serves as commander of the 559th Bombardment Aviation Regiment of the 1st Combined Aviation Division of the Air Force of the Russian Federation (military unit 75392, Morozovsk, Rostov Oblast). Aircraft of this unit actively bombed Kharkov during the first months of the full-scale invasion of the Russian Federation. Later they were based in the settlement of Gvardeyskoye, Crimea. On August 17, after the explosions at the military airfield, the survived aircrafts were flown to Russia, and Shishkin received the Order of Merit for the Fatherland, First Class.

Major Kozlukov Alexey Viktorovich

He was born on March 16, 1988. Graduated from the Moscow Higher Military Combined Arms Command School. Resides Kozlukov in the city of Moscow.

“Unknown Soldiers.”

Several of the characters on this list are not public at all, and there is no information about them on the Internet. You’d think they were in intelligence or other super-secret agencies. But looking at these faces, one is led to the conclusion that they are ordinary extras who have not proved anything in life. Among them: Lt. Col. Roman Anatolievich MorgunovMajor Alexander Vitalyevich Savon, junior sergeant Slepnev Ivan Borisovich, Lieutenant Colonel Maxim Viktorovich Uvarov and private Pirbudagov Kazim Abdulbasirovich. Why they received awards is still a mystery.

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