Military Review

Popular unrest in the USSR. 1953-1985


As you know, in the "union of indestructible free republics" was created "new historical the community is the Soviet Norwegian people. ” The “indestructible bloc of Communists and non-partisans” regularly gained 99,9% of the vote in the most Soviet elections in the world, “the people respected the soldier and the soldiers were proud of the people,” “my police protect me,” and the rampant “friendship of peoples” was amazing. All the more terrible are the reports regularly appearing in our time about ethnic clashes, pogroms of police stations, riots of “valiant warriors of the invincible Soviet army”, unauthorized demonstrations and strikes that took place during the bright years of overcoming the “personality cult”, “voluntarism” and “stagnation” . There are many, many various publications on this subject now: articles on individual events, attempts to systematize some, even books are published (the most famous is the work of VA Kozlov “Unknown USSR. Confrontation of the people and the authorities, 1953-1985.”) . With my collecting itch, everything tempted me and tempted me to put together references to these inexplicable events in the life of highly spiritual Soviet people and, finally, washed me out. For which I express my gratitude to the iroman user, because it was his post that inspired me and encouraged me to finish what I started.

This list summarizes the data from the above publications, as well as what I was able to dig up in addition to them in the life-giving Runet. Where he could - put links to more detailed articles, notes, here - the date and place of events and a concise description of them, just to have an idea, "what was it." And the chronological framework - in a completely voluntaristic way (despite the fact that such actions were condemned by the decisions of the Leninist Central Committee) I chose the years from 1953 to 1985, inclusive. That is, the "golden age of Soviet civilization" (c). I tried to select events one way or another confirmed by sources and evidence. If I missed something or have an interesting link - do not hesitate to tell me
by leaving a comment. Wherefore, it seems, everything, we proceed to historical studies.

+1953 - The Soviet leadership through the channels of the Allied Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Prosecutor's Office reported on 94 violent conflicts (cases of mass hooliganism, group fights, unrest and riots). Military personnel took part in 44 episodes.


February 12 - unrest in the city of Chardjou (Turkmen SSR): the conflict of soldiers of a tank regiment with the population of the city. 17 people suffered, 9 was hospitalized (according to other sources, there were even more injured).
May 1 - military unrest at the Volkhovstroy station of the Kirov Railway: a fight with local residents, looting. Attire patrols could not restore order, caused by the police, who arrested several particularly aggressive rowdies, in response, drunken soldiers attacked the police. They opened fire on the crowd, as a result of the 2 soldier killed, 4 injured.
May 24 - July 7 - unrest of the prisoners of the special Mountain camp (Norilsk). Caused by use cases weapons and the killings of the prisoners by the guards of several camp branches, a strike was declared in response. A special commission of the USSR Ministry of Internal Affairs sent from Moscow accepted the demands of the strikers and went on easing the regime, but then the tightened troops of the Ministry of Internal Affairs began to storm the zones. In total, the suppression of the uprising killed up to 150 people. It is not known whether there were casualties among the troops. The 2920 activists of the strike were isolated, new cases were initiated against the 45 organizers. [1]
July - riots in the city of Rustavi (Georgian SSR): clashes of drunken soldiers with the police, whose employees were repeatedly beaten, destroyed by the police department.
July-August - the excitement of prisoners in a special river camp, located in the area of ​​Vorkuta. A strike began that engulfed 6 from the 17 camp units (the total number of prisoners is about 16 thousands). The demands of the strikers were the arrival of a commission from Moscow, a softening of the maintenance regime. During the work of the commission, riots began, as a result of the use of 42 weapons by prison guards, prisoners were killed, 135 people were injured, 52 were seriously injured. Most of them died.
4 August - riots in Kherson (Ukrainian SSR): a policeman used a physical force to arrest a teenager selling corn on the market, which caused outrage among citizens. A crowd of up to 500 people gathered near the regional police department building, “shouts of anti-Soviet content” were heard. The policeman was arrested and placed under investigation.
9-12 August - the excitement of "stroybatovtsev" in the city of Usolye-Sibirskoe (Irkutsk region). Mstya for the wounded unknown comrade, they staged a massacre in the city garden, smashed the shop and the city cinema, tried to break into the building of the GOVD. A total of 350-400 people participated in the riots. 50 locals suffered, 1 killed. The arrested instigators continued to behave ugly and in the guardhouse, set fire to it.
September - “hooligan war” in the town of Ludza (Latvian SSR), unleashed by students of the local vocational school, most of whom were former orphans from Belarus. Completed the "occupation" of the city teenagers 22-23 September: robbery, beatings, etc. Detention of the orphanage 43, 8 arrested. [1]
September 4 - riots during a match between football teams Torpedo (Moscow) and Dynamo (Tbilisi). Angry with the referee's mistake (an incorrectly scored goal), the fans pounded the stadium, tried to find and lynch the judge, but left with nothing - the players hid.
September 16 - a conflict at the Khabarovsk station between conscripts who were traveling to the Far East from the years. Novosibirsk and Tashkent. The riots lasted for several hours, a weapon was seized during their course, as a result 5 people were killed, 6 was seriously injured. The clashes were stopped only after the intervention of the duty units of the Khabarovsk garrison, about 100 of their active participants were detained.
October - a collective fight between tankmen and local residents in the village of Urechye, Slutsk district, Bobruisk region (Belorussian SSR), 1 people killed.


May-June is the largest uprising of prisoners: in a special Steppe camp (the town of Kengir, Karaganda oblast, Kazakh SSR). It mainly contained Western Ukrainians, Lithuanians, Latvians, Estonians, Chechens, people of Central Asia. The guards repeatedly used force, killed and wounded several prisoners, and several dozen people were shot by young prisoners in an attempt to penetrate the women's zone. The criminals were supported by political ones, the guards were driven out of the camp territory. The rebels put forward the requirement to mitigate the mode of detention. During the suppression of the uprising killed more than 700 prisoners. [1]
August 15 - a drunken brawl at the Kupino station of the Omsk railway: drivers driving to the Altai Territory to export grain, attacked passengers of a passing train, then staged a massive fight with a stabbing with local youth in the city garden. Militia turned around, had to use a weapon, 1 bully killed, another 1 injured.
22-24 August - riots in the city of Barnaul (Altai Territory): clashes between soldiers and construction workers and businesses located nearby. The conflict spread to the city, where the soldiers beat the windows, rampaged, started fights, and the workers caught and beat the soldiers. 22 soldier hospitalized, 5 of them died from beatings; 2 workers arrived at the local hospital. Clashes stopped by police.
December 12 - in the village of Elizavetinka (Akmola region of the Akmola region of the Kazakh SSR) a fight between the cadets of the school of mechanization and special settlers (Chechens and Ingushs). About 30 people participated on both sides.


March - unrest mobilized in the coal industry and the construction of mines workers in the Kamensk region: mass brawls, fights, police disobedience. 5 people killed, dozens were injured.
May 17 - unrest in Ekibastuz (Pavlodar region of the Kazakh SSR): beatings by Russian workers and demobilized Chechen soldiers mobilized by the military commissariat. The police tried to protect the latter, but to no avail. As a result of beatings, 3 Chechens were killed, 4 injured. In order to avoid further excesses, a special operational team of the Ministry of Internal Affairs was introduced into the region.
October 13 - in Yerevan (Armenian SSR) the football match of the local "Spartak" and the District Officers' House (Sverdlovsk) played out to the end, but the uncounted goal against the guests with the 2 score: 2 brought the audience into a state of extreme excitement. From the stands began to throw stones, injured the side referee. After the meeting, the crowd began to turn and set fire to cars and motorcycles in the vicinity of the stadium. Neither the ambulance carriage nor the police patrol cars were spared. Guards of order along with firefighters used hoses, but it did not help. The incident led to casualties on both sides. [1]


9-10 January - riots in the city of Novorossiysk. When a group of hooligans was detained, a fight broke out with the police, a huge crowd formed (about 1000 people) threw stones at the police station, broke into him and attacked the employees, attacked the building of the State Bank, tried to break into the mail. Several people were killed, 3 of the policeman and 2 of the military suffered, 15 hooligans detained.
January 21 - “Market Riot” in the city of Klaipeda (Lithuanian SSR). A crowd of 500 people attacked the police officers, accusing them of killing a herring trader (in fact, he had epilepsy). The building of a militia stronghold was bricked up with bricks, then the building of the Main Department of Internal Affairs-KGB was attacked.
5-11 March - political unrest in the Georgian SSR after the Twentieth Congress of the CPSU: Tbilisi, Gori, Sukhumi, Batumi. Thousands of demonstrations and rallies were in the nature of protest against Stalin's revelations. The slogans “Down with Khrushchev and Mikoyan!” Were supplemented with calls to “drive the Russians out of Georgia!”, “Beat the Armenians!” In Tbilisi, March 8-11 unrest, clashes of demonstrators with the police, an attempt to storm the House of Communications, calls for pogroms of Russians and Armenians. When pacified, 15 is killed and 54 people are injured (of which 7 subsequently died). [1]
July - mass unrest in Orenburg of young workers (1700 people), traveling from Armenia to harvest in the Kostanay region of the Kazakh SSR. Indignant at the lack of trade in food at the station, the workers dispersed around the city, hooligans, molested women, fought with each other and local residents.
September 4 - riots in Kiev (Ukrainian SSR) at the football match of the local team "Dynamo" and "Torpedo" (Moscow). The crowd, dissatisfied with the loss of countrymen, rushed to the field in order to beat the Muscovites. “Torpedovtsy” barricaded themselves in their dressing room, but their goalkeeper A. Denisenko did not run from the field, hoping that “the Ukrainians did not touch the crest” and was severely beaten. The angry crowd beat shop windows, turned over cars, and chaos reigned around Gorky and Krasnoarmeiskaya streets. It was possible to calm the fans only with the help of the internal troops in full combat gear. [1]
October 28 - riots in Slavyansk (Stalin region of the Ukrainian SSR). A crowd of 500-600 people gathered near the police department building and, inflamed with rumors about the beating of a detained drunken locksmith and other prisoners, tried to capture the GOVD and threw stones at him. A number of militiamen and party workers are beaten up. The riots managed to stop only with the help of the police from neighboring cities.


April - mass demonstrations and unrest among the Abkhaz population demanding the withdrawal of the Abkhaz ASSR from the Georgian SSR.
14 May - in Leningrad at the stadium. Kirov after the football match between the teams "Zenit" and "Torpedo" (Moscow) riots, which were attended by more than 150 people. Caused by police brutality with one of the fans, the policemen were beaten. The stadium is surrounded by additional forces, unrest is cruelly suppressed. Subsequently, 16 people were convicted of hooliganism. [1], [2], [3]
June - riots in the city of Podolsk (Moscow Region): 7000 people are demanding punishment of police officers who have killed a detained driver. The events are qualified in the press as “hooligan actions of a group of drunk citizens who spread provocative rumors.” During the suppression suffered 15 people, 9 instigators condemned. [1]


2-3 July - mass brawls in the city of Krivoy Rog (Ukrainian SSR) between groups of young people from the local plant and from the Komsomol town. About 100 people took part in the fights, injured around 10, 9 active participants were detained by the police.
26-27 August - “Russian revolt” in the city of Grozny (Chechen-Ingush Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic), caused by Chechens' criminal lawlessness (robbery, murder, hooliganism) and the inability of the authorities to protect the inhabitants. The funeral of the murdered Russian worker turned into a demonstration with the participation of 2-3 thousands of people, demands were made for the expulsion of Chechens from the city. The building of the regional committee was seized, several Chechens were beaten, clashes with military and police were recorded. More than 100 people were arrested, sentences were given: from one year conditional to 10 years imprisonment. [1], [2]
- At the beginning of the month, the police of the city of Taiga (Kemerovo region) prevented a mass brawl between local youth and visiting builders with the participation of up to 400 people on both sides. I had to make warning shots in the air before 60.
- at the end of the month a harvest clash occurred in the Komsomolsky district of the Stalingrad region on the grounds of “hostile relations” between visitors from the city (80 people) and local residents. 8 people suffered, 2 of them received serious injuries.
September 7 - riots in Riga (Latvian SSR). The policeman demanded that the local residents, the former "prisoners", stop drinking alcohol, for which he was attacked and, defending himself, killed one of them, after which he disappeared into the building of the tram depot. The crowd, incited by the friends of the victim, broke down the depot doors and re-beat this policeman, as well as his colleague. After that, a special decision of the Bureau of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Latvia established an 40-kilometer zone around Riga, in which it is prohibited to register those convicted of serious criminal offenses. [1]
October 16 - a clash between two groups of young people who came to harvest in the Kytmanovsky State Farm of the Altai Territory. Barak, in which the workers lived, was set on fire, and those who ran out of the fire were severely beaten. 1 killed, 3 badly injured.


1-3 August - a conflict of workers with the authorities in Temirtau (Karaganda region of the Kazakh SSR), which resulted in riots. About 5000 people, Komsomol builders who came to the construction of virgin soil, were unhappy with the living conditions, lack of amenities and work, meager wages. They barricaded the construction site and then tried to storm the buildings of the city services. The city authorities decided to use weapons, as a result of "spontaneous" executions, 11 people died, 32 was injured; injured over 100 soldiers. 40 assailants are convicted, several people sentenced to death. [1]
August 22 - group fight between Russian youth and Chechen-Ingush in Gudermes (Chechen-Ingush ASSR). About 100 people participated, 9 suffered bodily injuries, 2 of them were grievous. It was possible to stop the collision only with the help of the military of the local garrison.
September 10 - a mass brawl at the station Magnay of the Karabalyk district of the Kustanai region (Kazakh SSR). Around 50, soldiers in the Zagotzerno club, in retaliation for beating their comrade, organized the beating of Armenians who arrived at the harvest. As a result, 1 Armenian killed, 5 participants in the brawl were injured.
September 20 - in Stalin (Donetsk), the local Shakhtar played against CSKA (Moscow). The guests led 2: 1, but 6 minutes before the end of the audience, the spectators ran out onto the lawn, the match was interrupted. Replay ended with the same score, but in favor of the miners. The first match is completely “erased” from the mentions, and only thanks to the statisticians we know about its conduct.


March 6 - a brawl at the Riga Polytechnic Institute (Latvian SSR) at an evening on March 8 between Russians and Latvians.
June 23 - strikes at enterprises and institutions in Riga due to the cancellation of the Janova day off (an ancient Latvian summer solstice festival).
July 19 - in Moscow, due to the unrest caused by the hosts' fans displeased with the match, the football match between the teams of CSKA and Dynamo (Kiev) was interrupted. The audience broke on the field, none of the judges and players was hurt, but the fans took their favorites in their arms.
July 31 - unrest caused by demobilized sailors, and the pogrom of the Ingush family Sagadaev in Dzhetygar (Kazakh SSR), took part in the events from 500 to 1000 people, used firearms. The Sagadayev family was brutally murdered, a sailor died in the storming of their home, about 10 people were injured. The house and all the property of the family were burned, a police station was seized, a bullpen was opened.


January 15 - riots in Krasnodar due to rumors of a policeman beating up a soldier by police officers during his arrest for violation of his uniform. 1300 people participated in the events, the crowd surrounded the building of the municipal department of internal affairs and even seized the building of the regional committee of the CPSU for some time. With great difficulty, the situation in the city was normalized, firearms were used during the dispersal of the crowd, 1 people were killed. 24 party unrest brought to justice. [1]
25 June - “Biysk pogrom”, one of the largest unrest in the history of the USSR. In the city of Biysk (Altai Territory), a conflict arose between the residents (500 people) and the police in the city market, which grew into a fight and riots, during which several people died. The unrest was extinguished only after 5 hours with the help of the police and the military. According to some reports, the crowd was shot. 13 people were tried, 3 were sentenced to death (commuted to a term), the rest were sentenced to long prison terms. [1]
30 June - Mass riots in the city of Murom (Vladimir region): workers of a local radio factory stormed the building of the sobering cell, in which their comrade detained (and, rumored to be beaten) by militiamen died at night, destroyed the premises of the city police department, freed 48 prisoners, plundered armory By the end of the day, order in the city restored. 13 people convicted, 3 sentenced to death. [1]
23-24 July - a riot in the city of Alexandrov (Vladimir region), which was attended by about 1500 people. The crowd (at the peak of the riots was about 500 people) tried to release the 2 detained drunken soldiers, tried to storm the building of the city police department and burned it. The military units that arrived in the city used weapons, 4 people died, more than a dozen were wounded. 19 man convicted, 4 sentenced to death. [1], [2]
15-16 September - street riots in the city of Beslan (North Ossetian ASSR) because of an unsuccessful attempt by the police to detain 5 people who were drunk in a public place. The guards of the order received armed resistance, the total number of rebels was 700 people. During the 1 event, a person is killed. The 7 most active participants are brought to justice.
October 1 - a football match in the city of Tbilisi (Georgian SSR) between the local team Dynamo and Spartak (Yerevan) was interrupted due to unrest of spectators in the stands. Sticks and bottles flew to the field, but the security forces managed to get the players and the judicial brigade out of the shelling. A few days later, at the meeting of the Presidium of the USSR Football Federation, the Dynamo team was defeated, and Spartak won. [1]


May 31 - June 1 - strike at the floating plant "Chernyshevsky", engaged in crab fishing in the Sea of ​​Okhotsk. All 70 workers refused to go to work, demanding an increase in wages. 3 people recognized as the instigators are convicted.
1-3 June - the most famous episode of popular unrest in the history of the USSR: events in Novocherkassk (Rostov region). [1]
The strike at the port of Odessa (Ukrainian SSR). The workers refused to ship food destined for shipment to Cuba, citing the fact that Ukraine is not happy with food.


16-17 June - riots in the city of Krivoy Rog (Dnipropetrovsk region of the Ukrainian SSR). The police tried to detain a drunken soldier, used force, which caused outrage of people, the formation of a crowd of about 200 people. Trying to disperse it, the police used a weapon, wounding several people. The next day, a crowd gathered around the police department that reached 600 people, the most active group broke into the building and made a pogrom there. 2 people were fatally injured; more than 20 were injured and injured. Unrest stopped by the arrival of soldiers of internal troops. [1]
November 7 - “Stalinist” revolt in the city of Sumgait (Azerbaijan SSR). During the demonstration, the police tried to take away from the citizens "unauthorized" portraits of Stalin, who were carried in the columns of demonstrators. A serious fight ensued - police and people's warriors on the one hand, around 100 demonstrators under portraits of the Generalissimo - on the other. More than 800 residents joined the demonstrators, an attack was made on the building of the city police department, weapons were used (1 people were injured). Subsequently, 6 people are convicted. [1]
December 18 - After the murder of a Ghanaian citizen, African students studying in the USSR are in turmoil on Red Square in Moscow. [1]


April 16 - a riot in the city of Bronnitsy (Moscow region). In a city bullpen, a local resident died from beatings of police. A crowd of about 300 people laid siege to the bullpen building, captured and defeated it. Subsequently, 8 participants of the events were tried.
18 April - riots in Stavropol: a crowd of about 700 people tried to release the "unfair" detainee drunken hooligan. The building of the police station was pounded, a policeman was beaten up and a patrol car was burned. Soldiers patrols entered the city, the instigators arrested.
September 29 - October 3 - riots in Khasavyurt (Dagestan ASSR). Chechen raped a girl of Lak nationality, her fellow tribesmen went to avenge. Up to 700 people participated in the fights. 9 people are brought to criminal responsibility.
Strike shipyard workers in the city of Sevastopol.

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  1. Mikhalych_75
    Mikhalych_75 8 December 2010 17: 47 New
    you can add: 1959 - in the city of Kirovabad (Azerbaijan SSR) a football match was held between the teams "Shirak" (Leninakan, Arm. SSR) and "Tekstilshchik" (Kirovabad, Azerb. SSR). The textile worker was losing and bottles and stones were thrown onto the field. Chirac's goalkeeper was smashed in the head with a stone. After that, pogroms of Armenians began. In the 1st ("Azerbaijani") part of Kirovabad, the crowd killed 3 Armenian women returning from work and smashed the houses of Armenians. A crowd gathered from the 2nd ("Armenian") part of the city to avenge the murders. Troops intervened (submachine gunners were stationed on the bridge separating the city), a curfew was imposed. Somehow they reassured me. Information can be found in the internet, my father and uncle told me.
    And a small footnote: in your post in 1967 (riots in Stepanakert), you could add that this husband, in my opinion the director of the village school, after killing the boy, hammered nails into his head, which he boasted about. Now this man is declared the hero of Azerbaijan. Old about this case and this hero can also be found on the internet.
  2. ildaaro
    ildaaro 17 December 2010 19: 52 New
    July 1957 is like Georgia. An attempt to capture a crowd of arsenal, mail and other armed crowd. Rallies for the exit of Georgia from the USSR. The crowd was dispersed with the help of tanks. One youth under 23 took part.
  3. walter_rus
    walter_rus 15 June 2012 00: 37 New
    A very interesting article, which leads to reflection only if the author speaks of impartiality, then why such pearls as “Soviet Norwegian People”, “in the most Soviet elections in the world”. The current authorities are very fond of nodding at the events in Novocherkassk, but judging by recent rallies, they are successfully applying the same methods.