From a BBC article talking about Russian soldiers who remained in Afghanistan:
"Alexander deserted his unit to escape the brutality of his Russian officers. ... he remembered his walk into the darkness one night, believing he faced certain death. The Russians had warned - anyone who surrendered would be tortured by the mujahideen. But instead they took him in. He eventually converted to Islam and fought his former Russian comrades."
Why were we ever afraid of this military machine? Their soldiers hated them so much that they were willing to leave and go to what they thought was certain death at the hands of savages. If they ever tried to invade Germany, we could have caused mass desertions simply by dropping leaflets.