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13 May, 2024 13:32

British commandos operating in Ukraine – US general

AP removed the US Special Operations chief’s mention of London’s clandestine activity from the original article
British commandos operating in Ukraine – US general

A senior US military official has apparently inadvertently acknowledged to the media that British commandos are secretly operating in Ukraine. The comment was later removed from the original article.

Gen. Bryan Fenton, commander of US Special Operations Command, was interviewed by the Associated Press about the lessons that his force is learning from the conflict.

The original version of the story published on Sunday said the Americans get those lessons “mostly through the eyes of our UK special operations partners,” who have been testing new approaches there. As an example, he said British special operations forces were drawing on the experience of RAF pilots for advice using drones and “the way a ship in the Black Sea navigates.”

The text has since been redacted to remove any mention of the British military’s role in the Ukraine conflict.

The Russian military has long pointed the finger at the UK, claiming that its military personnel were playing a major role in ostensibly Ukrainian operations. For example, the Defense Ministry accused “British specialists” of helping Kiev plan and execute a naval drone attack on the Russian Black Sea Fleet in late October 2022.

Earlier this year, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz confirmed that British and French planners were helping Ukraine launch strikes with medium-range missiles that the two countries had provided to Kiev. Germany is not prepared to involve itself in a similar manner, the official told the public, explaining why Berlin would not donate its Taurus missiles to the Ukrainian forces.

Western nations have acknowledged keeping a small number of military personnel in Ukraine for jobs like the protection of diplomatic premises or in advisory roles, but have denied claims that they were taking part in combat.

When asked about Fenton’s remarks, the British Ministry of Defence told the news outlet Business Insider that “it is the long-standing policy of successive governments not to comment on UK Special Forces.”

Moscow considers the Ukraine conflict to be a US-initiated proxy war against Russia, in which Washington and its allies are increasingly deeply involved.

British Foreign Secretary David Cameron claimed earlier this month that Kiev “has the right” to attack targets deep inside Russia with weapons provided by his nation. In response, Moscow warned that if that happens it will target British military targets in Ukraine and beyond.