Friday, February 27, 2015

A Paramedic's View Of The War In Ukraine

Alik Sardarian waits for injured soldiers outside Artemivsk hospital. Anastasia Vlasova for Newsweek

Maxim Tucker, Newsweek: One Paramedic's War in Ukraine, From Maidan to Debaltseve

A column of Ukrainian troop trucks rumbled across the frozen, pitted ground. Slowed by a full load of soldiers each, their drivers strained to see through mud-spattered windscreens in the early morning light.

Thousands of Ukrainian soldiers had started their retreat from the besieged city of Debaltseve in the dead of night on 18 February, but the rising sun was making the trucks and their trails increasingly obvious. As they left the strategic rail and road junction, the soldiers didn’t know where the Russian forces and their separatist allies were, but they knew they were close. Vehicles started peeling off from the column across the fields, hoping to provide a smaller target.

As one four-truck convoy trundled onwards, metal-clad shapes loomed on a snow-capped ridge ahead. Within moments tank rounds and rocket-propelled grenades had ripped into three of the trucks, explosions sending their human cargo sprawling and shattered into the field.Machine gunfire clattered into the engine block of the last vehicle, bringing it grinding to a halt.

WNU Editor: A must read on how bloody and destructive the Ukraine war has become from one who must treat the wounded and dying.

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