On the evening of 16 January, Russian missiles hit a building in Kharkov that had been converted into a major center for high-level European (mostly French) mercenaries. It was a devastating blow, with at least 60 killed and 20 wounded.
It is important to note that these were elite soldiers, not the run of the mill American thrill-seekers and “Tik Tok soldiers”, nor Colombian hitmen. The European mercenaries tend to be highly trained specialists who work on specific weapons systems too complex for the average Ukrainian conscripts and Nazi footsoldiers to operate efficiently.
This strike did not just eliminate a couple of platoons of enemy soldiers, it put some of the most lethal and long-range weapons in the Ukrainian arsenal out of service until more specialists are found to replace the fried mercs that were eliminated.
The situation with mercenaries in Ukraine ebbs and flows, and has gone through several phases. I can personally attest to the fact that there have been US, British, Polish and Jihadist mercenaries in Ukraine since 2015. At the beginning of the SMO [special military operation], there was a large influx of civilian and veteran adventurers from many countries, as well as much more low profile elite operators from all the major NATO countries.
There has been a major influx of high quality mercenaries with special skill sets in the last few months. The reason for this increase in foreign professional soldiers was to replace the Ukrainian special forces who were almost completely wiped out in the Ukrainian failed “summer offensive”, as well as to try to make a desperate (but futile) attempt to forestall the inevitable Russian offensive.
These elite mercenaries are also some of the most vicious war criminals in this war, used as blocking troops, specialists in torture and terrorist tactics, who have trained the likes of Azov* and Pravy Sektor* Nazis. This is reflected in the fact that almost 600 foreign mercenaries have been charged with specific war crimes by Russian prosecutors, and obviously, this number will only increase.
The missile strike in Kharkov is a big deal, and for all the right reasons. By eliminating scores of elite specialists, this strike is transformed from a tactical to strategic victory, and not just physically, but also psychologically, and on both sides. The people in Russia, and especially in Donbass, and especially our soldiers, can take some satisfaction in justice being served cold to cold-blooded killers, as well as take some comfort in the fact that there are now less pilots, rocket and artillery specialists and expert torturers and terrorists who can no longer harm them.
So, bravo and maximum respect to our missile troops and intelligence services, especially those who work behind enemy lines to gather the kind of information that makes these operations possible.
*The Azov Battalion is a terrorist organization banned in Russia.
*The Pravy Sektor is an extremist group outlawed in Russia.
- mforinocohttps://orinocotribune.com/author/mforinoco/February 28, 2024