I was "drafted" by the Republic of Ichkeria to help fight the Russian invasion in 2000. I was nine years old at the time.
I was given an AK-74 carbine, and paired with a scout, as his spotter. Then I was sent to fight in the Siege of Grosny. Though we were supposed to be scouts, we joined up with a squad to aid in the counter-offensive (At this point, the Russian forces had all but secured the city). Specifically, my squad's job was to aid in the capture of the town of Shali. It was a three-pronged attack; other units would secure the towns of Argun and Gudermes, thus creating a supply corridor through which to bring reinforcements and supplies to Grozny.
The following days were occupied by a Russian counter-attack, as they tried to break our supply lines, but we succesfully held all three cities and did not allow them a further foothold in the region.
We then advanced to the city itself. We fought the Russian Federation forces through January, but then tens of thousands of reinforcements arrived, cutting off our supply line and forcing us to retreat. We attempted to withdraw from the city, and helped many civilians escape in the process.
We were forced to stop in the Caucasus by a heavy snowstorm, but then came under fire by artillery. We were forced to make our way through the blinding snow out of the mountains, where we were ambushed by thousands of Russian soldiers, out-numbering us by at least four to one. We could not retreat into the mountains because of the artillery, we could not cross the river to the north because of the Russian battallions chasing us. We could not retreat to the southeast, because that would have brought us right into the belly of the beast, where the main Russian expeditionary force was. Our only way out was a canyon to the southwest.
Of course, it was mined.
It was a disaster. Of our unit of two-thousand, casualties numbered at six-hundred, with about four-hundred of them fatalities.
Our leadership was in shambles after this. Only one General had survived, and he was badly wounded, maimed by a land mine. I do not know what happened to him after this. He survived the retreat, I believe, but he did not lead us. He was a poor leader to begin with.
That was only the beginning. My first month in combat. The following months, I functioned as a spotter. Then, a scout. At times, a designated marksman. For the four years after the Battle of Grozny, I was a part of the Ichkerian Army's guerrilla war on the Russian government of Chechnya. They were years filled with ambushes, bombings, and assassinations, and I do not wish to discuss my part in them.