U.S. News

Connecticut Army veteran goes to Ukraine, helps blow up Russian tanks

A US Army veteran from Connecticut who joined up with Ukraine’s military to fight off the Russian invasion has gone viral after footage of him standing in front of lines of still-blazing Russian tanks spread online.

James Vasquez, 47, publicly declared his plan to leave his family and business in Norwalk on Feb. 24 — the day that Russia invaded.

He finally made it to Ukraine on March 15 — sharing his adventures en route via a newly created Twitter account and detailing how he helped “take out” numerous Russian tanks as well as kill and capture Russian troops.

“Welcome to America!” someone shouts in one of his videos — seen more than 2 million times since it was posted Thursday — as Vasquez stands in front of a smoking Russian tank.

“I don’t know if you guys know what this was behind me,” Vasquez said as he posed with one of his comrades-in-arms, “but that’s a Russian tank. First tank that was taken out.”

“So far we took out seven Russian tanks after a long firefight and took control of the area,” he said in an update early Friday.

“Right now we’re going to just kind of sweep around and see what we got left. Some stragglers — take them out and call it a day,” said the one-time US Army sergeant who served tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. “It’s been a long day, baby.”

Another clip showed him excitedly counting out four blazing armored vehicles while exulting: “Yeah, buddy … I call that a good day!”

It’s not just tanks that are victimized by Vasquez and his colleagues, as the American bragged in a tweet Tuesday: “Captured 159 Russians today!

Vasquez has also shown off his weaponry on social media, displaying grenades and a machine gun.

Vasquez publicly declared his plan to leave his family and business in Norwalk on Feb. 24.
Twitter/@jmvasquez1974
James Vasquez
Vasquez says he has been well-received by Ukrainian soldiers.
Twitter/@jmvasquez1974

“I had a pretty beat up weapon,” he captioned a picture of an automatic rifle Wednesday, “so I decided to take this bad boy from a Russian.”

Vasquez has also witnessed the losses of war, admitting Thursday that one member of his team was killed and two others were injured during “six straight hours of combat.”

While Vasquez does not say where he is inside Ukraine, he previously stated that he had been woken by huge explosions in the western city of Lviv.

However, rather than feeling fear, Vasquez insisted last week that “I kind of feel like I’m on an awesome very dangerous vacation.”

James Vasquez grenade
Vasquez has shown off his weaponry — including grenades — on social media.
Twitter/@jmvasquez1974

Vasquez says he has been well-received by Ukrainian soldiers, who “think it’s awesome an American soldier is here to fight alongside them” after initially being “shocked to see an American passport” at checkpoints. He says he has fought alongside British and Canadian citizens, but has not come across any other Americans on the front line.

“I don’t want the Russian propaganda machine saying there is a battalion of Americans which I’ve already seen,” Vasquez stressed in a tweet from early Friday. “[I’m] Here alone on my own accord in a complete voluntary capacity.”

In one of his most recent posts Friday, Vasquez shared photos of himself and a British soldier training Ukrainian forces on their “down time.”

James Vasquez
Vasquez told his Twitter followers how he took this machine gun from a Russian.
Twitter/@jmvasquez1974

“[T]hey are eager and fast learners,” he said of the Ukrainians. “It’s really an honor to be fighting with these fine men.”


Checkout latest world news below links :
World News || Latest News || U.S. News

Source link

Back to top button