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Russia created analog of SMERSH in occupied territories to search for spies

Russia created analog of SMERSH in occupied territories to search for spies Restored SMERSH units will fight the Ukrainian underground under occupation (Photo: Getty Images)

In the areas of Ukraine that are currently under Russian occupation, the Russian forces have revived the punishing units known as SMERSH. SMERSH was an organization that hunted down spies in the Soviet territories during World War II, according to Newsweek.

Moving forward, the occupiers and collaborators will conduct searches for individuals supporting Ukraine in the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia occupied districts, as well as the northern districts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.

The publication acknowledges the threat of increased terror and exposure but notes that the Ukrainian underground remains active and continues to cause trouble for the Russians in the temporarily occupied territories.

Newsweek writes that in official statements and propaganda media reports, the SMERSH in 2023 is positioned as a return to long-forgotten valuable traditions. One of the Russian TV channels even found a member of one of these units from the 1940s. She told how they were taught to neutralize valuable documents by tearing them into pieces and swallowing them after chewing them thoroughly.

The SMERSH group, which means "death to spies," worked in the USSR from 1943 to 1946. They were very brutal towards those they believed to be spies. The Smershivtsi tortured many people, with some even losing their lives. This included members of the team who were suspected of being disloyal to the Soviet government.

Fighting the pro-Ukrainian underground in the occupied territories

The Russian Intelligence Agency, FSB, has developed several tools for reporting in Crimea. The "Crimean SMERSH" is the most widely used. Also, the "AIS Extremist" is a new database of so-called "unreliable persons."

Meanwhile, the occupiers in Melitopol, Zaporizhzhia region, have set up video cameras and kidnapped innocent people in search of "terrorists" and rebels.

In addition, the occupiers have found a new way to destroy the pro-Ukrainian underground in the Zaporizhzhia region.