Ukrainian volunteers man fortifications around Kyiv

IDF veteran teaches Ukrainian civilians to fight Russian invaders

Israeli national says he is sharing knowledge he acquired during his service with his neighbors in heavily bombarded Kyiv and provides them with much-needed weapons training

Alexandra Lukash |
Published: 03.10.22, 12:31
As Russian forces press on with their offensive into Ukraine, one Israeli national is helping the locals put up a resistance.
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  • Andrey (alias), an IDF veteran living in Kyiv, shares knowledge he acquired during his service in the Israeli military with his neighbors in the heavily bombarded Ukrainian capital and provides them with much-needed weapons training.
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    Ukrainian volunteers man fortifications around Kyiv
    Ukrainian volunteers man fortifications around Kyiv
    Ukrainian volunteers man fortifications around Kyiv
    (Photo: EPA)
    "First of all, I'm helping fortify the neighborhood. I instruct them what to do and how since a little low on combat equipment so I don't have the equipment to join the local army," he told Ynet in an interview with his face and eyes covered by a balaclava and ski glasses, fearing Russian forces may track his location.
    "I help defend the neighborhood I live in and carry out night patrols, I teach people how to use a weapon and how to fight in our neighborhood if need be."
    Andrey says that has proven to be a tough feat as most locals have never experienced an armed conflict before and have no combat training.
    "Most of the population here has no idea what a weapon is and what war is," he says. "I can't just go from zero to 100. I mostly focus on the fundamentals that will help them survive in extreme cases and use their own weapons. I explain to them how the neighborhood is built, where they can take cover, what's safer and what's not."
    However, Andrey noted that the Russian offensive was nothing like what he encountered during his service in Israel.
    "I'll tell you this much, I took part in the Second Lebanon War, all the complex missions there, and that was all child's play compared to what's going on here. From what I saw and heard from my friends... they've been massacring civilians almost exclusively for about a week, innocent people. Especially people who want to leave the cities, who come with their suitcases and their children and just want to flee the city to the neighboring countries."
    He says that most of those atrocities stem from Russian troops being thrown into battle without adequate preparation and supplies.
    "The Russian troops are scared because they've been abandoned and have no food. The food they do have expired seven years ago. They don't have anything to eat and they don't know what to do. So they go around shooting, stealing, breaking into stores and apartments and using innocent people's food and means of communication. There was an incident not long ago in which a Russian soldier asked for a Ukrainian civilian's phone. He didn't give it to him, so the soldier shot him and took the phone."
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