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Soviet Special Forces

Spetsnaz solidiers surrounding Indy's car at Hangar 51.

Spetsnaz, or the Soviet Special Forces, was a team of highly trained soldiers in the Armed Forces of the Soviet Union. They were considered the best of the Soviet Army because their training was so harsh.


In 1957, during the height of the Cold War, over twenty members of Soviet Special Forces under the command of Colonels Irina Spalko and Antonin Dovchenko infiltrated Hangar 51 in the American state of Nevada. They stole the remains of an unknown pilot who crashed in Roswell, New Mexico in 1947.

The group later journeyed to Akator in South America while attempting to gain the ability to control American minds through psychic research. However, the group's number dwindled along the way and those that survived the trip were eventually eliminated by the power within the Temple of Akator.

Known members[]


Soviet Special Forces colonel Antonin Dovchenko in 1957.

Behind the scenes[]


Steven Spielberg with the Hangar 51 cast.

Indiana Jones director Steven Spielberg cast Russians in the roles of the main Soviet soldiers so that their accents would be authentic.[1]

Many of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull's disguised Soviets share names with US presidents. In the film's "Making of" documentary, Spielberg posed with seventeen Soviet soldiers dressed as Americans (as well as several of the military police personnel who were killed during the Hangar 51 infiltration). In a closeup, the name tags of some of them are visible.[2]

The depiction of the Soviets in the film generated some controversy back in Russia with the Communist Party of the Russian Federation having called for a ban on the film, accusing it of spreading lies to trick their youth and even suggesting that Spielberg wanted "to provoke a new Cold War".[3]



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