After a former local political leader visited the school Thursday, the women in the adjacent room were told there was "good news": They would be released.
"They said, 'Pack your things quickly, and take your babies with you,' " Dzandarova said.
Shortly after, she learned that she would have to choose between taking her son or her daughter. . . .
"Alana was clinging to me and holding my hand firmly. But they separated us, and said: 'You go with the boy. Your sister can stay here with her.' I cried. I begged them. Alana cried. The women around us wept. One of the Chechens said: 'If you don't go now, you don't go at all. You stay here with your children … and we will shoot all of you.' "
She couldn't save both of them. She could only die with both of them — or save one of them and herself.
Some kids ran away. The terrorists shot them in the back.
Translated Russian news coverage here. (C-SPAN ran Russian news yesterday. Good for them.)