Enjoying ad-free content?
Since July 1, 2024, we have disabled all ads to improve your reading experience.
This commitment costs us $10,000 a month. Your support can help us fill the gap.
Support us
Our journalism is banned in Russia. We need your help to keep providing you with the truth.

Support Grows for Russian Cadets Over Bawdy Viral Dance Video


Russian officials and fellow students have come to the defense of flight school cadets whose controversial half-naked viral dance video is threatening their careers. 

Aviation authorities launched an investigation this week into the video which depicts cadets from the Ulyanovsk Institute of Civil Aviation dancing to the “Satisfaction” club-hit while wearing nothing but their underwear and pilot caps. Russia’s Federal Air Transportation Agency warned that it could expel students linked to “the immoral episode,” while regional prosecutors have said they see no grounds for dismissal.

“I believe that expulsion will not exactly add patriotism or nurture [the cadets],” the Ulyanovsk region’s Governor Sergei Morozov wrote in a Facebook post on Thursday, a day after ordering a special commission to investigate the flight school.   

Head of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDPR) Vladimir Zhirinovsky demanded an immediate end to the “persecution of these young people,” the state-run RIA Novosti news agency cited him as saying.   

“The guys were [just] dancing, they’re 17-18, they’re young. Their costumes are fine too: it’s hot over there, the heating is fierce, 25 degrees Celsius. Why should they sweat?"

Russian students across the country reproduced the controversial dance video on Thursday in support of their fellow students, including pupils from agricultural schools in Ulyanovsk and Ryazanovo. A third video appeared later in the day depicting dancing young men wearing Emergency Situations Ministry t-shirts and uniforms.   

Meanwhile, more than 40,000 people have signed a petition in support of the cadets on the Change.org website. 

The controversial clip appears to be a scene-for-scene re-enactment of a 2013 British Army video. 

Duma deputy Zhirinovsky, in his impassioned defense of the Ulyanovsk cadets, went as far as advocating for introducing “dance breaks” at educational institutions. 

“Universities can take breaks [between classes], let them have a little discotheque during break-time in the hallway,” he was cited as saying by RIA.

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more