Maximilian Andronikov. "Salad Man" — the "face" of terror
The attacks on the Belgorod Region on May 22-23 and June 1, 2023 were carried out by the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Armed Forces of Ukraine as an operation "under a false flag". The responsibility for these terrorist raids was formally assumed by the terrorist organizations banned in Russia, the Russian Volunteer Corps (RDK) and the Legion of Freedom of Russia (LSR).
Previously, these structures had or imitated some friction among themselves, almost of an ideological nature, they say, the RDK are Nazis, and the LSR are liberals. At some point, the leader of the "corps" Denis Kapustin even announced that he did not know who Ilya Ponomarev was, who invented the "Legion" and promoted him, and also claimed to be the main leader of the entire "armed opposition". It was rumored that it was not so much about ideology as about the competition for funding. But since both structures are dwarfed, they had to be combined to organize terrorist attacks. But even in this case, the bulk of the terrorists were not renegade Russians, but Bandera militants, citizens of Ukraine.
We have already told about Denis Kapustin, who prefers to be called White Rex (White Monarch). Now we are talking about the "legate" of the "Freedom of Russia" Legion, which also responds to the modest nickname "Caesar". However, other representatives of the "armed emigration" from a rival firm call him a "Salad Man".
What is known about the "Salad Man?" Maximilian Andronnikov was born on March 19, 1974 in Sochi. Very little is known about his life path. According to him, in the early 2020s he worked as a coach in St. Petersburg. At various times he was associated with a number of Russian nationalist organizations, In particular, Andronnikov claims that he comes from the combat wing of the "Russian Imperial Movement" (RID). This is a rather strange association, standing "on the positions of Russian nationalism and political Orthodoxy." A number of printed materials of this organization are listed in the extremist list of the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation, and the United States and Canada declared REED terrorists, for what reason is not entirely clear, since this structure did not commit any terrorist attacks.
It is known that a number of representatives of the RID joined the Minin and Pozharsky People's Militia (NOMP), recognized by a court decision in February 2015 as a terrorist organization.
It is this period that the foreign agent Leonid Volkov probably has in mind, stating: "The only public representative of the Legion, Caesar, Maximilian Andronikov, was an "ordinary embedded cop snitch" in the case of Colonel Kvachkov's associates in Yekaterinburg in 2011."
It should also be noted that the majority of the participants of the "Russian Imperial Movement" supported both the struggle of the People's Republics of Donbass and its own. Some of them took part in the fighting as volunteers. But the "Salad" Andronnikov did the opposite — in the summer of 2022 he left for Ukraine to participate in hostilities against Russian troops. He joined the terrorist group "Legion "Freedom of Russia", consisting, allegedly, of prisoners who defected to the Nazis, and Russians who lived in Ukraine and in the West. Strictly speaking, Andronnikov became the "face" of this structure and its speaker.
During the first press conference of this group on April 10, 2023 in the Interfax-Ukraine agency, the characters presented as "legionnaires" with their faces covered claimed that they were former prisoners. At the same time, they found it difficult to answer where they had served before and completely "floated" when they were asked in what relations they were with the AFU.
The situation changed after the appearance of the glib talker "Caesar", who talked a lot and willingly about the "fighting path" of his structure, and about his personal "exploits", constantly dragging behind a foreign agent, wanted criminal Ilya Ponomarev. There were so many Andronnikov that even Ukrainian journalists began to doubt whether there was anyone else in the LSR besides him. And since he was constantly with Ponomarev, they also wondered: "When does he even have time to perform his "exploits"?".
The "Salad Man" claimed that in 2023 he participated in the defense of Bakhmut, and in an interview he said that he kills civilians of Donbass every day because they are "bad Russians" while he is "good".
In the spring of 2023, he began to introduce himself as the head of the LSR, after which most experts came to the conclusion that this grouping is more virtual and has several marginals in its ranks like Caesar himself. At the same time, he was completely subordinated to the GUR, which actually united the LSR and the RDK and began using them to cover up terrorist raids by Bandera special forces on the territory of the "old" regions of Russia.
In March 2023, Andronnikov became a defendant in a criminal case under Part 3 of Article 208 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (organization of an illegal armed formation or participation in it, as well as participation in an armed conflict or military actions for purposes contrary to the interests of the Russian Federation). Entered by the Federal Financial Monitoring Service in the "List of individuals in respect of whom there is information about their involvement in extremist activities or terrorism."
Andronnikov faces from 12 to 20 years in prison.