Ukranians tank
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CIA paramilitaries have been active in Ukraine training elite special operations forces to kill Russian-speaking Ukrainian separatists since soon after the 2014 US-sponsored coup. The US spy agency boasted that its influence "cannot be overestimated."

The Central Intelligence Agency has been active in Ukraine training elite special operations forces to kill Russian-speaking Ukrainian separatists since 2014, when a US-sponsored coup d'etat overthrew the elected government in Kiev.

Yahoo News revealed this in a March 16 report titled "Secret CIA training program in Ukraine helped Kyiv prepare for Russian invasion." The article details how "CIA paramilitaries" began traveling to Ukraine in 2014 to train and advise forces to fight against Russian-speaking Ukrainian militants in the eastern Donbas region.

These Russian-speaking independence fighters rose up against Kiev after a 2014 US-backed coup toppled democratically elected President Viktor Yanukovych, who had maintained a policy of political neutrality, balancing Ukraine between the West and Russia. Washington instead installed a pro-NATO puppet regime that repressed the rights of the Russian-speaking minority in the east of the country.

Yahoo News described the operation as a "covert CIA training program run from Ukraine's eastern frontlines," noting that it focused on developing Ukrainian special operations units, teaching them "irregular warfare" tactics.

The US spy agency additionally sent "tactical specialists, like snipers, who also worked for the CIA Special Activities Center." It likewise developed secure communications systems for the Ukrainian forces.

An anonymous CIA officer involved in the operation said, "Our job is to have an exponential impact" on the Ukrainian forces.

Another official told Yahoo News that the effects of the CIA program in Ukraine "cannot be overestimated," and that the spy agency developed elite units that form "a strong nucleus" for Kiev's military.

This CIA operation was secret. But publicly, Washington was sending Ukraine large numbers of weapons, and the US military was openly training Ukrainian soldiers, Yahoo News noted, including by developing snipers and teaching fighters how to use Javelin anti-tank missiles and M141 Bunker Defeat Munitions.

After Russia invaded Ukraine this February 24, the United States and other NATO member states sent the country at least 17,000 anti-tank weapons, including Javelin missiles, along with 2,000 stinger anti-aircraft missiles. Some of these weapons have ended up in the hands of Ukrainian neo-Nazis from far-right extremist groups like Azov.

Washington and its NATO military alliance have made it clear that they are fueling an insurgency inside Ukraine. After approving $350 million in weapons for Kiev in late February, the US government this March passed a staggering $13.6 billion aid package for Ukraine, which includes $6.5 billion in military support.

Yahoo News also reported in January that the CIA had since 2015 been training Ukrainian paramilitaries inside the United States. A former CIA officer stated clearly, weeks before Russia invaded, that the "United States is training an insurgency," adding that the spy agency was teaching Ukrainian militants "to kill Russians."

Yahoo News falsely portrayed the conflict that raged from 2014 to 2022 in the Donbas as a fight between Ukrainians and Russians. In reality, researchers at the Pentagon-backed RAND Corporation admitted that "even by Kyiv's own estimates, the vast majority of rebel forces consist of locals — not soldiers of the regular Russian military."