Preparedness Notes for Tuesday – October 23, 2018

On October 23rd, 2002, around 50 Chechen rebels stormed a Moscow theater, taking 700 hostages during a popular musical. After 57 hours, during which two hostages were killed, Soviet Special Forces pumped a powerful narcotic gas into the theater knocking the terrorists and hostages unconscious before breaking in through the walls and roof. When the dust settled, most of the rebels and 120 hostages had been killed.


  1. Mike, the fact they did not try to assault shows how much they cared about casualties,almost all civilian deaths were from the gas they used and overdosed some, opposed to a assualt that would of killed almost all plus many attackers

  2. Per the original post above, at the time Soviet Special Forces pumped their gas into the theater, the terrorists had only killed 2 hostages. If the total number of hostages killed was 120 when all was said and done…and this gas really did knock out everyone in the theater, thus reducing or eliminating the likelihood that the terrorists inflicted additional casualties…that leaves the blood of 118 hostages on the hands of their rescuers. Dead is dead. If your rescue is going to kill indiscriminately – terrorist or hostage – it’s not much of a rescue. Bottom line, the so called rescuers killed about 59 times as many hostages as the terrorists. Yup…they certainly cared a lot!

  3. I understand collateral damage, but killing 1/7th of the hostages is an unacceptable loss in my book. Particularly when ‘you’ as the good guy do more of the killing then ‘they’ as the bad guy. By the way, I was not special forces, but I was military police. We trained for these types of scenarios…and killing our own was never an acceptable option.

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