Bes (Demon), from Kyiv
Ukrainian Volunteer Corps, the Right Sector Base, Dnipropetrovsk region.
My nickname - Demon - I got when I was in the third grade. My dad then forbid me to fight with other kids. And one day he gave me some money to buy new football cleats, one of my classmates found out and bunch of kids from my class beat me up, stole my money. When I got back home and told what happened to my dad he said - well, in that case you need to fight back, you’re a man. So next day I took a piece from a bench - just a wooden log and caught them one by one and beat the shit out of each. From that time people been calling me that.
Then I was involved with football hooligans, first started with Dynamo Kyiv and then joined CSKA Kyiv group. Travelled around a lot and took part in many riots. Interesting thing is there are few hools from Russia and Belarus here now fighting on the side of Ukraine because they are against Putin. So that’s the people I use to fight agains on football games, now they are here fighting on the same side with me.
My father and I now are also in a real war. He is very disapproving of me being here, he used to be in a Communist party and we have major ideological differences. My mom, on the other side is understanding. She took part in Maidan actively, She was tortured in Brovary by local cops during all those events, barely made it alive.
This war began for me when there were flags of the foreign countries being put up on my land. I instantly made my decision. For me Ukraine is one country, without any alternatives. We don’t need EU, we don’t need Russia. You understand, if we win this war we can serve as an example to the whole Europe.
I served in Army for 2 years. The war itself is of course little different from the service but it helps. I am grenade-launcher operator, mostly involved in sabotage operations. The most recent battle was the hardest - we were going to storm the heights near the airport - our assignment was to take one point to defend the people who are now sitting at the airport. And on our way there we were shot at from behind - a grenade launcher got our APC and it was just about 400 meters from the separatists check-point near Spartak. And there was a funny moment there - as we are sitting under fire - I get a text message on my cell - “Welcome to Russian Federation, if you have any problems please find the nearest Russian Embassy’ The Russians are already installing their networks on the cell towers in Donetsk… We were shooting back for some time, then retrieved into the woods and some of our guys were panicking. Someone yelled ‘We’re fucked, we’re fucked’. And I tried to calm him down and explain said - ‘We’re gonna be fucked when we are in the body bags on our way home. Now we are fine’. We joked around, I gave people some chocolate. The separatists were pressing down on us from one side but our guys made it through from another and rescued us. All of us except two. One was shot and one was captured.