News From Ukraine: Mariupol Surrender Video Dismissed as Russian Propaganda by US Navy Seal | World | News
The port city has been a key target for Putin since he began his invasion of Ukraine in late February and has been the scene of some of his army’s worst atrocities. Russian troops now appear to be simulating the surrender of 267 Ukrainian marines in Mariupol in a video that shows a line of soldiers marching with their hands up, and which was shared on Russian social media service VK. However, a US Navy Seal spotted several key details that suggest the video isn’t all it seems.
Navy Seal @ChuckPfarrer said on Twitter: “Russian sources say 267 Ukrainian Marines went to Mariupol, and they have the video.
“But the uniforms are too clean. No one is hurt. No one needs to shave and the t-shirts are all fake.
In an accompanying image, Mr. Pfarrer further broke down the video.
He pointed out that Ukrainian marines wear a green beret, as well as a black-and-white-striped undershirt – two items he says are “esteemed emblems of naval infantry.”
He added, “It’s likely that each of these Marines would own one (or both) of these uniforms and wear it proudly into battle.”
However, none of the so-called Marines in the video have these items.
The Navy Seal added: “With the exception of two prisoners in the front row, wearing small pieces of duct tape, none of the other ‘prisoners’ wore the blue and yellow recognition ribbon normally worn by Ukrainian fighters.
“It is HIGHLY unlikely that a freshly captured prisoner will be stripped of the exact markings that would distinguish him as an enemy.”
Another telling detail that could easily be missed by a quick glance are the ammo pockets on the soldier’s clothing.
The bags are clearly full, indicating that the “prisoners” were not searched or cleared of any military equipment.
Mr Pfarrer said: “It is impossible for a POW to be allowed to carry an unopened pouch that could contain ammunition, a pistol or hand grenades.
“Any veteran who has ever taken an enemy prisoner knows they must be searched thoroughly. Pocket by pocket, pouch by pouch. Weapons, knives and ammunition must be taken away.
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Additionally, despite apparently being captured after 2 weeks of intense urban fighting, none of the soldiers show any signs of injury, shaving or dirt. Their uniforms are also in perfect condition.
Only two of the soldiers appear to be limping.
As a port city in eastern Ukraine, Mariupol represents a key strategic target for Putin. Its capture would allow it to resupply its forces from abroad, which is crucial as the Russian military appears to be under-resourced, as much of its military equipment is made in Ukraine.
Taking the city would also link annexed Crimea to the Russian separatist-controlled Donbass region, bolstering Putin’s power in the east.
The Russian tyrant has been charged with war crimes as several schools and hospitals in Mariupol were caught in airstrikes and artillery shelling, killing dozens of civilians.
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Last week, Russia withdrew around 20% of its forces from the areas surrounding kyiv, which many analysts say was the main focus of the first wave of invasions.
Russian officials said it was a matter of refocusing their efforts on the east – which includes Mariupol.
They also claimed they were despairing of their focus on the Ukrainian capital in order to promote peace talks between the warring countries.
However, this claim was quickly challenged by another reported Russian atrocity – their troops appeared to be cruelly trapping the bodies of civilians and their homes with mines as they retreated.