Ukraine is preparing for a drawn-out guerilla insurgency against Russia

Ukraine is preparing for a drawn-out guerilla insurgency against Russia

As Russian forces take control of more and more land in Ukraine, Ukrainians already are planning for an insurgency against any occupying troops.

VICE News interviewed a current member of the country's special forces who promised a violent and organized struggle against Russian troops throughout the country. "Welcome to hell," he said. “The enemy should know first: They are not welcome. Come on our land and in every window, in every building. We have ears and eyes and sometimes even hands to destroy them.”

The soldier agreed to be interviewed on the condition of anonymity while wearing a camouflaged balaclava to conceal his identity. He, and soldiers like him, are prime targets for the assassination lists many believe the Russian intelligence apparatus already is compiling.

A Pentagon source told VICE that the U.S. sees the path forward in similar terms: even if Russia defeats the Ukrainian military, a brutal guerrilla war will ensue. With a well-trained, secretive force conducting insurgent activities, the war could continue indefinitely.

Contingencies include creating agent networks across the country and hiding secret weapons stashes to be harvested for future use. They also are coordinating with key allies such as Poland, he said. Special forces members would fade into the civilian population and begin the work of guerrilla warfare against Russia.

The preparation for an insurgency, along with the stiff resistance by regular Ukrainian forces against the Russian invasion, is further repudiation of President Vladimir Putin’s initial prediction of a three-day war. Instead, the Russian invasion promises to be a bloody, protracted military conflict on a scale not seen on European soil since World War II.

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