As the Russian army continues to flail and fail in Ukraine, they are turning to ever more desperate attempts to remain un-killed and un-captured. This includes a massive number of war crimes, (15,000 and counting), meant to terrorize those in their path into frightful compliance.
Among the atrocities are reports of rape and torture – something that two American veterans captured and later freed by Russia can attest to firsthand.
Andy Huynh, 27, and Alexander Drueke, 39, who volunteered in the Ukrainian army, entered Ukraine in early April. They were taken as prisoners in June during a firefight in the village of Izbytske and held captive in the Donbas region.
In September, they were released to the U.S. embassy in Saudi Arabia as part of a prisoner exchange.
The soldiers from Alabama, who spent 105 days in Russian captivity, told ABC News they were held in a “black site,” where the had to endure daily torture. According to the pair, they lived on dirty water and spoiled bread and were interrogated, beaten, deprived of sleep and forced to stand or sit on their knees while blindfolded for hours.
And it gets worse:
During their captivity, Huynh and Drueke were also forced to make propaganda videos and partake in interviews, wherein they were forced to praise Russia. If they had not followed the script, they were to be raped or killed.
Drueke, 40, retired from the U.S. Army after 12 years. He was chosen as the duo’s spokesperson and was allowed to make calls to his family in Tuscaloosa under duress. According to Drueke, the captors had cracked four of his ribs.
The captors believed Huynh and Drueke were CIA operatives, and they demanded information from them.
The conditions were so harsh that Huynh said the men “prayed for death” during their time in Russia’s custody.
Several mass graves have been discovered in the wake of retreating Russian forces, many with large numbers of seemingly tortured civilian casualties among the dead.