US soldiers in Ukraine

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By EVE OTTENBERG*

It is not known how many American soldiers – not to mention American mercenaries – are in Ukraine, but they are there.

How many American soldiers are fighting in Ukraine? The group surrounding Joe Biden is careful not to reveal or refer to his presence, mercenary or otherwise, but the issue keeps coming up. It reappeared on June 27, when Russia bombed what the Ukrainian press called simply an attack on a restaurant in Kramatorsk. However, this supposedly unremarkable restaurant was part of a hotel complex that apparently attracted a lot of Western males of fighting age, specifically American and other NATO soldiers.

We know this because eyewitnesses heard them speaking American English and saw their military tattoos (3rd Battalion of Rangers USA), as well as the American flags on their helmets. Additionally, American mercenaries were reported dead on certain people's Twitter accounts. We also know that this missile strike killed 50 Ukrainian officers and two generals and at least 20 Western officers, including Americans. Well, that proved once again that an American soldier in Ukraine is just one more soldier in the fight against Russia.

The problem is that we don't know how many American soldiers – not to mention American mercenaries – are in Ukraine. The Russian Ministry of Defense estimates that there are more than 900 American mercenaries in Ukraine. Meanwhile, Washington remains guarded by this secret for the obvious reason that failing to do so could provoke an open confrontation with Moscow. And because they don't want a nuclear World War III, the White House and Pentagon have an intense interest in hiding facts about the US military footprint in Ukraine. They also hide a possible incentive for Americans to sign up as mercenaries. Even if many American NATO officers are killed there, here, in the so-called homeland of freedom, everyone would be kept in the dark.

Reports received indicate that the fighting is going badly for US troops holed up in Ukraine. "This is my third war I've fought, and it's by far the worst one," Troy Offenbecker told the Daily Beast on July 1st. “We are crushed by artillery, by tanks. Last week, a plane dropped a bomb that landed close by, about 300 meters away. It was horrible shit.”

O Daily Beast quotes another US soldier, David Bramlette: "The worst day in Afghanistan or Iraq is a great day in Ukraine." Of recon missions, he said that "if two of them get hurt... there's no helicopter to come get it... Shit could go south real, real fast." In other words, this is a different enemy, very competent, and US soldiers in Ukraine can die in large numbers without people in the US ever hearing about it.

Take the case of the missile attack on Lvov in March of this year. We have no idea if the rumors surrounding this attack are true, but they speak of hundreds of deaths in NATO forces, including Americans. To the extent that they mentioned this alleged catastrophe, the US media were quick to dispute the veracity of these reports. As is often the case, this attack received little or no Western coverage.

Even experienced observers of the Moon of Alabama turned away from it, presumably because the fog of war was so thick. However, a regular commentator on that site, Oblomovka Daydream, posted on April 15th, on his account maintained there, some very interesting information. It's worth taking a look at the details that don't appear elsewhere. But beware: little is known about the history of Oblomovka Daydream.

According to this source, in March, Russia launched “Daggers” – Kinzhal missiles – at a NATO command center in the Lvov region. This secret facility, located at a depth of one hundred meters, was “a reserve command post of the former Carpathian military district (…) well protected and equipped with modern communication systems.” It was NATO generals and colonels who chose this shelter. They felt so safe that they let their guard down: “Sometimes dozens of cars gathered at the entrance to the headquarters, even in broad daylight.”

The attack was chosen by the Russians "because such a bunker would be invulnerable to conventional missiles". However, the Russian attack left no survivors. “And there were more than 200, including – sources say – some 'informed' Western journalists, several US generals and senior officers. But there were also Britons, Poles, Ukrainians.” According to the Greek portal ProNews, who is close to the Greek Ministry of Defense and who was quoted in that post, “dozens of foreign officials were killed” when Kinzhal hypersonic missiles hit the secret facility. This was "a major disaster for NATO forces in Ukraine".

As mentioned earlier, Western media were quick not to say a word about this or to cast doubt on the credibility of this information. According to the Newsweek, on 31 March, allegations that a NATO command center had been hit were “baseless”. A Newsweek stated that the ProNews is a “highly questionable” website. He admitted, however, that on the night of 9 March Russia retaliated by sabotage in Bryansk with Kinzhals and that one region targeted was Lvov.

So it's not clear what happened. Oblomovka Daydream cites some convincing details: “Some Kiev sources also criticized this loss: after the emergency, representatives of the Ministry of Defense and the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were called to the carpet of the US Embassy, ​​where they were reprimanded” for the poor security of the control center” and, at the same time, handed over a list of the dead American officers and ordered “at least to get them out of the underground'”.

Here's the thing: dozens of Americans could have been killed, and if they were, rest assured, we'll never hear a peep about it. That's because this is a proxy war and the US supposedly has nothing to do with it. Even though billions of US dollars and a lot of US military equipment are gone, who knows where Ukraine's role comes into all of this. Even if Americans fight and die there. And even if no one outside of their families and government officials knows who they are.

But never doubt that Americans have been in Ukraine since the beginning of this war. Reports that surfaced on Twitter on July 9th citing an Azov commander, Volyn, are interesting; he told Turkish media that the US and Russia arranged Azov's surrender in Azovstal last year in exchange for the withdrawal of several "high-ranking US officials" from the facility. Indeed, there were rumors that there were Americans in the Azovstal compound at the time of the surrender to Russian troops. This Turkish interview seems to confirm this information. Far from being opposed, many Americans would support this debacle. Furthermore, many Americans dismiss the threat of nuclear war with Russia, something no sane person wants to gamble on, but which is possible.

It all adds up, once again, to the argument that Washington should recant and try to negotiate. Moscow has said it will attack Western command centers. How long before a large contingent of American NATO “trainers” are killed and this can no longer be hidden? And then? Oops… come the excuses: we didn't want to start World War III!

Washington must seek a negotiated settlement. A peace plan, like the one organized by neutral countries in the spring of 2022, which Western geniuses scuttled. Washington could swallow its pride and follow the Chinese peace proposal. If there was the slightest concern for human life, bigwigs in the imperial capital would have done something. But one can only conclude that they did nothing and will hardly ever do so.

*Eve Ottenberg is a writer and journalist. Author, among other books, of Lizard People.

Translation: Eleutério FS Prado.

Originally published on the portal counter punch.


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