A Canadian sniper from the famous regiment joins the ranks of the Ukrainian foreign legion
A veteran Canadian Armed Forces sniper has joined the ranks of a foreign legion in Ukraine, answering President Volodymyr Zelenksky’s call for foreign fighters to fight off the Russian onslaught.
The veteran identified as ‘Wali’ crossed into Ukraine from Poland with a group of British and Canadian veterans last week, sheltering in a renovated house to join Ukrainian forces and a growing battalion of volunteer citizen soldiers , according to Radio Canada.
Wali served with the 22nd Royal Canadian Infantry Regiment in Kandahar during the war in Afghanistan between 2009 and 2011 and traveled to Iraq as a volunteer foreign fighter embedded with Kurdish forces in 2015 to fight Isis.
In June 2017, an unidentified Canadian special forces sniper fired a McMillan Tac-50 rifle to kill an Isis militant in Mosul from more than two miles away, in the longest killings on record.
The 40-year-old computer programmer said missing his son’s first birthday was the “hardest part” of his decision to travel to Ukraine, according to the CBC.
“A week ago I was still programming stuff,” he said. “Now I’m seizing anti-tank missiles from a warehouse to kill real people… That’s my reality right now.”
He said to the French language of Canada The Press newspaper that he refuses to witness a “total invasion” before his eyes.
“What I’m doing is bypassing Canadian politics. he told the newspaper, speaking in French. “Yes, of course governments don’t like it, but [in Ukraine]I really feel there is strong support, and not just moral support.
According to Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, more than 20,000 people from 52 countries have volunteered to help Ukraine against Russian forces following President Zelensky’s Appeal for “anyone who wants to join the defense of Ukraine, Europe and the world” to “fight alongside Ukrainians against Russian war criminals”.
Ukraine’s Defense Ministry has also issued a call for volunteers with combat experience who have “non-Ukrainian citizenship” but “stand with Ukraine against [the] Russian invasion.
Mr. Kuleba announced on Twitter that anyone interested in joining the ranks should contact Ukrainian diplomatic missions in their respective countries.
“Together we defeated Hitler, and we will defeat Putin too,” he said.
“I want to help them because they want to be free, basically. It’s as simple as that,” Wali told CBC. “I have to help because there are people here who get bombed just because they want to be European and not Russian.”