As you may know, Ukraine has an international legion that it had set up early in the invasion, which enables foreigners to volunteer and fight with the Ukrainians. We recently came across a video circulating the internet of Western fighters taking out a Russian BTR-80 in Kharkiv.
The video shows a group of Western volunteers, some with American accents and some with British accents are seen in a wooded area. Canadian volunteers are also possibly part of this group. The Telegraph further reported that the group had 15 men engaging in operations on the frontlines in eastern Ukraine for some 15 hours. This was later geolocated to be somewhere near Velyki Prokhody Village in Kharkiv.
An American shooting the video orders a certain soldier named “Bryan” to lead the attack as they have spotted a Russian BTR-80. During the video, gunfire, bombs, and artillery can be heard in the background, indicating that the location was indeed an active war zone and not just some randomly staged video.
War is a dangerous business, but someone's gotta do it.
— Canadian Ukrainian Volunteer 🇺🇦🇨🇦✊🏻 (@CanadianUkrain1) May 27, 2022
The soldier named “Bryan,” who is wielding what seems to be a Czech RPG-75M, came out of the wooded area to a vast field, pointing at the Russian BTR-80 to destroy it. But for some unknown reason, the RPG does not fire, which leaves the American recording the footage to fire.
“Go! Shoot it now!” said someone behind the camera to “Bryan.”
The American soldier then uses what seems to be an RGW-90 to take out the BTR-80. The BTR had also spotted them and put them in a dangerous situation as it could have fired its guns on them. The BTR was later seen to be severely damaged but was still able to drive away from the attack. However, they were not out of the woods yet (quite literally) as they were spotted by the Russians who spotted them, returning fire.
In longer versions of the clip, the group is seen pulling back from the conflict zone. Later, it was revealed that the volunteer lying down prone during the first portion of the video was a 30-year-old British veteran Ben Grant who fought in the Afghanistan war.
🇬🇧🇺🇦 The son of the British parliamentarian Ben Grant is fighting on the side of Ukraine
He is a member of a foreign legion in the Armed Forces.
Grant helped rescue a fellow who was injured on a mine during an intense firefight north of Kharkiv💙💛 pic.twitter.com/qZ2pOpAKsB
— ТРУХА⚡️English (@TpyxaNews) May 28, 2022
Ben Grant is also the son of British Parliamentarian MP Helen Grant. Ben has reportedly served in the commando unit of the Royal Marine Corps and volunteered in Ukraine’s foreign legion. He left Britain in March and did not tell his MP mother.
Reports indicate that they were in the conflict zone for 15 hours, where they fought Russians on the frontline. After they destroyed this BTR-80, they linked up with Ukrainian forces to storm a trench, where they reportedly killed 30 Russian soldiers.
“I think we must have been spotted by drones beforehand, and they had set up their lines… so as we went in, the mass firefight broke out where you see [in the video] what we saw,” Grant told The Telegraph.
Video of Ben Grant, a former Royal Marine and son of conservative UK MP Helen Grant, helping to evacuate the wounded fellow soldier “Deano”.
At least l15 volunteer soldiers from the UK and the US took part in this ambush on Russian troops.
— Visegrád 24 (@visegrad24) May 28, 2022
In another video showing the group retreating, it was revealed that a team member named “Deano” had been wounded, with blood seen flowing from his left leg. Another member of the group was also seen laying down, possibly also shot.
“We were walking in single file as the contact happened. Deano was at the end of my team when he went to take a knee… we were shooting, getting our heads down and shooting them. I was terrified but driven to complete my most important goal, which at the time was getting him and my team out of the danger,” Grant explained.
“What was so scary was being so limited by trying to carry someone, when I can’t pull my weapon up, while there are attack helicopters overhead and tanks firing through the woods. It was unreal – I’ve never experienced anything like that in my life.”
In the video, he can be heard telling Deano to keep moving as he and another volunteer were carrying him to safety amidst the gunfire in the background.
“C’mon Deano, c’mon brother, c’mon mate!” he said. “C’mon, you got this. We’ve got to move now. We’re gonna die! F*cking move!”
You can hear and see Deano grunting as he was in pain when Grant told him that they would get shot if they stop to treat his wounds there. It was later revealed that Deano had been injured by a mine, possibly remote-controlled. Once they got to a location relatively safe from the gunfire (but still within range), a 22-year-old soldier by the name of Edwin Saez applied a tourniquet to the wound. It was reported that bullets were flying past them as they were doing first-aid.
“You OK, bro? It’s alright. Deano… well done, well done… we’ve gotta go, come on, I can’t leave you. Grab his helmet – someone help! Helmet! Helmet! You’ve got to try and walk, or we’re going to die, mate.”
Deano, whose real name is Dean Arthur, also a Briton, was a former Grenadier Guardsman. He said he did not remember much from the incident as he was going in and out of consciousness but said he was extremely lucky to get out alive.
Everybody who served in the military knows how strong bonds are made. No doubt that this is one of those times that brotherhood between the Americans, Britons, Canadians, and even the Ukrainians is made.