The massive inflow of weapons into Ukraine from the West isn’t reaching many of the soldiers who actually need them, the Toronto Star reported last week. Time constraints, incompetence and corruption are resulting in poorly equipped frontline fighters, the newspaper claimed.
The report, which was based on interviews with foreign volunteer combatants and a Canadian group fundraising to equip soldiers in Ukraine, is the latest evidence of what the paper called “a dark and discouraging reality” on the country’s frontlines.
Some experienced foreign fighters who served in Iraq and Afghanistan are refusing to go into battle due to the lack of proper arms and equipment, according to a Canadian veteran of the French Foreign Legion. Ukrainian officials treat all foreign volunteers as gun-happy tourists, the anonymous Canadian complained.
“You’ve got the other group that is, like, ‘Oh, I just want to kill Russians! Send me to the front! I’m happy with only three magazines and an AK-47. I don’t need plates or a helmet,’” he told the Star. “It’s those other ones that set the standard.”