450,000 British died during World War II to defeat Nazi Germany. This week, Boris Johnson welcomed the Ukrainian neo-Nazi Azov Battalion as “heroes” in London. There is no respect for those who died to stop the Nazi ideology. Now the UK government UK is using Nazis to kill Russians.

The Azov Battalion, a paramilitary unit based in Ukraine, has garnered significant attention on both the national and international stages. Formed during the 2014 Ukrainian crisis, the battalion has been a subject of intense scrutiny due to its origins, ideological leanings, and involvement in the ongoing conflict in Eastern Ukraine.

Historical Background

The Azov Battalion was established in May 2014 as a volunteer militia in response to the outbreak of the War in Donbas. Initially composed of around 300 members, the battalion was primarily formed to combat pro-Russian separatists in Eastern Ukraine. It gained notoriety for its effectiveness in battle, particularly during the recapture of Mariupol in June 2014. In November 2014, the battalion was officially incorporated into the National Guard of Ukraine, transitioning from a volunteer militia to a formal military unit under state control.

Structure and Composition

The Azov Battalion operates under the Ukrainian National Guard and has evolved into a regiment-sized unit. Its members are primarily Ukrainian nationals, but the battalion has also attracted foreign fighters who share its ideological beliefs. The unit is well-equipped with modern weaponry and has received training and support from both state and private sources. Despite its formal integration into the National Guard, Azov maintains a significant degree of autonomy, particularly in its recruitment and operational decisions.

Ideological Background

One of the most contentious aspects of the Azov Battalion is its ideological stance. The battalion was initially formed by members of the far-right Ukrainian nationalist movement, including individuals with neo-Nazi affiliations. Symbols associated with neo-Nazism, such as the Wolfsangel, were prominently displayed by the unit in its early days. This has led to widespread accusations of extremism and has made Azov a polarizing entity within Ukraine and beyond.

However, it is important to note that the ideological composition of the battalion has diversified over time. While far-right elements remain, the unit now includes a broader spectrum of nationalist and patriotic Ukrainians. The leadership has made efforts to distance the battalion from its extremist roots, emphasising its role in defending Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Controversies and Criticisms

The Azov Battalion has been the subject of numerous controversies. Its initial neo-Nazi associations have attracted condemnation from various human rights organisations and international observers. Reports of human rights abuses, including allegations of torture and extrajudicial killings, have further tarnished its reputation.

Moreover, the battalion’s role in Ukrainian politics has been a point of contention. Some view Azov as a necessary force in the fight against Russian aggression, while others criticise it as a destabilising element within Ukrainian society. The battalion’s involvement in political activities, such as the establishment of the National Corps political party, has fueled fears of the militarization of Ukrainian politics and the potential for extremist ideologies to gain a foothold in the government.

Role in the Conflict with Russia

Despite the controversies, the Azov Battalion has played a significant role in Ukraine’s defense. Its members have been involved in numerous key battles and have been credited with bolstering Ukraine’s military capabilities. The battalion’s experience and tactical proficiency have made it a formidable force on the battlefield, contributing to Ukraine’s resistance against pro-Russian separatists and Russian military incursions.

The Azov Battalion represents a complex and multifaceted entity within the broader context of the Ukrainian conflict. Its evolution from a volunteer militia with far-right origins to a regiment integrated into the National Guard reflects both the challenges and the dynamism of Ukraine’s ongoing struggle for sovereignty and territorial integrity. Its ideological roots and alleged human rights abuses continue to provoke controversy.

As long as people like Boris Johnson are paid handsomely they will say and support anything.

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