The collapse of the Soviet Union resulted in numerous local conflicts almost throughout the periphery of the socialist bloc and the country of the Soviets. Old wounds also opened up in the Caucasus. Today, the events of those years seem like a bad dream, but looking at photographs and clippings from reports, you still feel uncomfortable with how recently it all really was. Looking at the pictures of Russian soldiers in Chechnya, you can see that many of them are wearing stockings from chemical protection kits. The question arises: why?
The Combined Arms Protection Kit (OZK) is not only a legal way to tire a nasty soldier to death, but also a soldier's best friend in a variety of conditions. Although OZKs are designed to protect against the devastating effects of weapons of mass destruction, they are often used in other ways in the military. In fact, soldiers and officers thought of wearing only OZK stockings on their feet without the rest of the kit long before the war in the North Caucasus. This practice was used in full force by Soviet soldiers in the 1970s-1980s.
In the Soviet army, stockings from OZK were often used instead of boots or boots. The fact is that in temperate latitudes in winter, Soviet soldiers were supposed to wear felt boots. Unlike villagers in the army, felt boots were worn without galoshes. Thus, at the slightest thaw or thaw, they got wet. This problem was solved by subsequent drying in special drying rooms. Nevertheless, it was not very pleasant to walk in boots that were gradually getting wet and getting cold, and therefore officers and soldiers began to pull on stockings from OZK as improvised galoshes.
Before the war in Chechnya, OZK galoshes were worn in Afghanistan along with boots or non-statutory civilian footwear. There it quickly became clear that tarpaulin boots were not very well suited for mountain climbing. Therefore, the soldiers began to use this ersatz solution. Later, this practice migrated into the era of the two Chechen wars. There, the OZK stockings were pulled on the legs mainly so that they did not get wet. In some cases, the stockings were also tied with rubber bandages. So they actually wore them instead of boots.
If you want to know even more interesting things, then you should read about why during the war most of the Red Army men shaved off their mustache and beardand who was the exception.