Since the whole Russia-Ukraine conflict took off in the last few weeks, reports have come fast and furious over what is happening over there. Some are in conflict with each other, and some media photographs and videos have been traced to previous events and even video games.
Russia is turning to Syrian fighters experienced in urban combat to battle Ukrainian forces as Moscow prepares for street-by-street fighting against dogged resistance from the Kyiv government, according to a new report.
Russia, which has backed the Syrian government in that country’s long-running civil war, is recruiting the fighters in the expectation that their ability at close quarters could help Moscow take the capital and overthrow the Ukrainian government, four US officials told the Wall Street Journal Sunday.
The newspaper said a Syrian publication in the eastern city of Deir Ezzor has offered volunteers between $200 and $300 “to go to Ukraine and operate as guards” for six-month stretches.
Jennifer Cafarella, a national security fellow at the Institute for the Study of War in Washington, told the Journal that Syrians have honed their urban fighting skills over nearly a decade of conflict, abilities that the mostly conscripted Russian force lacks.
And the Russians are not above paying for services of those who are more experienced than they. Interesting.