Adam Osmayev, British-Raised, but not British Terrorist

By Graham

Adam Osmayev, a 33-year-old man fighting for the Ukrainian military, a commander, even, spent long enough in Britain to have British citizenship. Actually, born in Grozny, Chechnya, he gave up his Russian citizenship in 2012, it’s unclear if he currently holds any citizenship, reportedly having travelled to Ukraine on a false passport in 2012. His years in Britain were from 1994 to 2001, sent by his father, a high-ranking Communist official in charge of the then pro-Russian Chechen republic’s oil reserves, to study at Wycliffe College.

There, he was apprehended for his part in a plot to assassinate Russian president Vladimir Putin, and Osmayev spent the next 2 1/2 years in jail in Odessa. As a post-Euromaidan Ukraine spiralled into a war which saw a sharp spike in anti-Russian sentiment, Osmayev was freed last October.

As leader of Chechen unit Dzhokar Dudayev Battalion, fighting for Ukraine’s ‘ATO’, Osmayev is now a regular in the media, recently the subject of an adoring article in the Daily Telegraph – Adam Osmayev: Cotswolds public schoolboy turned Ukraine militia commander.

Yet it wasn’t like that before, back in 2013, in the Telegraph, it was  – Chechen man educated in Cotswolds to go on trial over Putin plot

1Adam1And a more factual description of the charges against him –

“To carry out a terrorist act with the aim of the elimination of the head of the government of the Russian Federation, V. V. Putin.” Locked behind the black metal bars of the courtroom’s cage, surrounded by armed police, the defendant Adam Osmayev smiles wryly.

Mr Osmayev has an unusual biography for an alleged Chechen terrorist. Son of one of the troubled republic’s most successful businessmen, he spent his youth in Britain where he was educated at a boarding school in the Cotswolds before studying economics at the University of Buckingham. 

Just how the 31-year-old Osmayev went from bucolic Gloucestershire to a Ukrainian prison cell, where he stands accused of planning one of the most audacious terrorist acts in history, is a strange tale featuring allegations of torture, vendettas in the Russian secret services and rivalries in the murky world of Chechnya’s pro-Kremlin leadership.”

1adamForward to 2015, and a palpable change in tone from the Telegraph, complete with loving childhood photos –

The battle for Debaltseve in eastern Ukraine has seen Osmayev, a native Chechen, and the men of his Dzhokar Dudayev Battalion engaged in fierce firefights and tank bombardments across the city’s neighbourhoods, railway marshalling yards and road network.

While this cannot have been precisely what he had in mind when he contemplated his future career amid the sheltered surroundings of Wycliffe, there was even then something prescient about his ambitions.

“I want to be president,” he once told the couple looking after him. They assumed he meant president of a large corporation, but Osmayev quickly put them straight: “No. President of Chechnya.”

The Telegraph now seems to believe that his heading a Ukrainian battalion in a war which has seen the Ukrainian military deploy mass shelling of civilian areas, is a step on the road to future presidency.

He may not yet have reached those heights yet, but last Sunday the 33-year-old found himself promoted to commander of his militia of international volunteers…. 

1Adam2Osmayev’s promotion is certainly a long way from those halcyon days on the playing fields and in the classrooms of Wycliffe College, founded in 1882 by GW Sibley, where boarding fees are now £10,000 per term.

Meanwhile various glowing references are given to his character –

Mrs Workman said: “The girls flocked round him. By the time he was in the upper sixth he was illegally hiring cars and taking them to B&Bs for the night.”
The boys revelled in the material benefits of Western Europe and Adam would return from shopping trips to London with two or three new Armani suits over his arm.

The Chechen students also loved to barbecue or bring out bottles of vodka and spend long evenings drinking around the kitchen table.
“There were never any problems or violence,” said Mrs Workman. “They just liked to enjoy themselves.”

1Adam3Culminating in –

“To be honest I thought he was dead,” said Mr Workman. “It’s sad, because if there hadn’t been a war in his country I’m sure he would have become very successful.”

For more than 130 years Wycliffe College’s motto has been “bold and loyal”.
Adam Osmayev now has the unenviable opportunity to fulfil those aspirations – albeit in the deadliest circumstances imaginable.

Back in 2012, the Telegraph was ready to ask some questions of Osmayev:

Nevertheless, there is no doubt that Adam Osmayev has some questions to answer. While the details of a plot targeting Mr Putin seem fanciful, was he handling explosive devices, and if not, why was there an explosion? How did he know the other two men involved, one of whom died in the explosion and the other, Ilya Pyanzin, who has been extradited to Russia? Most importantly, why did he hide from police for several weeks after the explosion, until he was found by the security forces in the raid that was later shown on Russian television? 

In 2015, the Telegraph stops at extolling his supposed virtues.

Adam eventually sat his A-levels and did well enough to go on and study economics at the University of Buckingham. One of his last school reports from Wycliffe stated: “Throughout his time in the Sixth Form, Adam has set himself high standards; usually he has managed to meet them. He is a charming and generally 1Adam5self-assured young man.” It concluded: “I feel he has great potential and the determination to make the most of that potential.”

No questions as to why he has chosen to fight for a Ukraine military occupying territory which voted itself out of Ukraine in a May 11th 2014 referendum, following the country’s post Euromaidan break-up. No questions as to his involvement in shelling of civilian areas of Donbass, with at least 60% of the victims there women.

The Telegraph’s 2012 article read like an article. The 2015 offering more like a supporting document for British citizenship. Osmayev himself has often spoken of his close connection with Britain –  “Mr Osmayev says that although he is a devout Muslim, he has never been interested in radical Islam or terrorism. “I was educated in Britain, I feel like a very European person.” 

But surely Osmayev is as far from true British values as possible. Fighting for a Ukrainian military comprised of heavily far-right, fascist elements. Fighting as a mercenary in a foreign country. He should be placed on a list of wanted terrorists in the UK. No matter how much time spent in the country, or connections, any notion of his holding any form of British citizenship

1BritainIn the Telegraph’s seemingly wilful conflation of him with a British citizen, from a ‘Chechen terrorist’ is the warped position of western media in its coverage of the Ukraine war. A terrorist finding redemption as a mercenary? A ‘Chechen terrorist’ man adopted as ‘one of our own’.

The western media will forgive Ukraine for anything it does in this war. They will clearly extend this to absolving the former sins of anyone taking part on Ukraine’s side. Being British isn’t about where you were born, Osmayev could have been ‘British’, but his participation in the Ukraine was as an active combatant on the wrong side means he never can be.

As a British citizen myself, I’d be more than happy to see our media returning to being British, rather than the mouthpiece of US and EU foreign policy.

4 thoughts on “Adam Osmayev, British-Raised, but not British Terrorist”

  1. Excellent piece. I felt like vomiting when I read the Telegraph article. The UK Government main opposition and MSM are now actively supporting a NAZI regime in Ukraine and no one gives a damn. We are fed a diet of stories about the threats of ant-Islamism and anti-Semitism while the press and our main stream politicians support people whose heroes stuffed 4 million people into gaz chambers. Extremists of the worst kind are now being supported using European tax payers money. If your a UK citizen remember that when the filth that make up our political elites come asking for your vote in may.


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