The wolfsangel-insignia bearing military formation is not the only far right unit to have been "absorbed" into the Ukrainian armed forces. Members of fascistic, ultranationalist groups such as Pravy Sektor serve in the army and indeed President Volodymyr Zelensky awarded the "Hero of Ukraine" medal to a member of that group.
A Canadian military delegation also trained one Ukrainian soldier who "sported the crest of a Nazi SS unit from the Second World War".
This was in 2020.
Canada has also supplied the Ukrainian military with weapons and equipment.
But the "sins" of Canada do not end there.
Canada has a blood-stained record in aiding the United States in a number of insalubrious geostrategic endeavours through the decades.
. Played a significant role in the demise of Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba of Congo. Lt. Colonel Jean Berthiaume, an infantry corps commander who served in the Congo as Chief of Staff at ONUC (United Nations Operation in the Congo), helped deliver Lumumba into the hands of his political enemies. Berthiaume told a journalist three decades later how he tracked Lumumba after Lumumba escaped house arrest and was heading for sanctuary in his political stronghold in the east of the Congo. Berthiaume telephoned Colonel Joseph Mobutu to tell the army chief and future Head of State that he knew where Lumumba was and where he would be tomorrow. He laid out a plan to use Canadian-trained paratroopers to arrest Lumumba in a small village which had a runway. Lumumba was arrested as planned and executed by firing squad in February 1961.
. Trained many of the soldiers who participated in the overthrow of President Kwame Nkrumah of Ghana in February 1966. Soon after Nkrumah's overthrow, C.E. McGaughey, the Canadian High Commissioner in Accra, wrote “a wonderful thing has happened for the West in Ghana and Canada has played a worthy part.” McGaughey also noted that “all the chief participants of the coup" were graduates of the Canadian-led Junior Staff Officers training program at the Ghanaian Defence College.
. Utilised diplomatic manoeuvres and its Special Forces soldiers to bring about the eventual overthrow of President Jean-Bertrand Aristide of Haiti in February 2004. In January/February of 2003, Canada organised an international gathering titled the "Ottawa Initiative on Haiti" at which the foundations for a coup in Haiti were laid. A year later, Canadian forces secured "key locations" around Haiti including the airport at Port-au-Prince which Canadian Special Forces occupied while their US counterparts kidnapped Aristide and spirited him out of the country and into exile.
. Played a role as part of the NATO member states who devastated Libya during the violent overthrow of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. During what they dubbed "Operation Mobile", the Canadian air force gave air cover to Islamist proxies in attacks on the Libyan national army, conducted bombing raids on Libyan infrastructure and indulged in psychological warfare by broadcasting anti-Gaddafi propaganda messages from a CP-140 Aurora maritime patrol aircraft.
It is an unenviable record of which a great many people, even Canadian nationals, remain unaware.
© Adeyinka Makinde (2022).
Adeyinka Makinde is a writer based in London, England. He has an interest in history and geopolitics.