Ukraine said it intercepted a call from a Russian soldier saying his unit was staging combat videos to make it look like they’re fighting better than they actually are – DAVID RAUDALES

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Ukraine said it intercepted a call from a Russian soldier saying his unit was staging combat videos to make it look like they’re fighting better than they actually are

Russian servicemen stand guard at the destroyed part of the Ilyich Iron and Steel Works in Ukraine’s port city of Mariupol on May 18, 2022, amid the ongoing Russian military action in Ukraine.

Photo by OLGA MALTSEVA/AFP via Getty Images

Ukraine’s Military Intelligence Directorate said it intercepted a Russian soldier’s call home.In translated audio, the soldier said his unit staged videos to make it appear like they were fighting well.The soldier said it was all a performance and that the videos were sent to their superiors, per the audio.

Ukraine’s military intelligence service says it intercepted the phone call of a Russian soldier telling his wife his unit was staging combat videos to make it look like they are fighting well on the frontlines.

The audio was published by Ukraine’s Military Intelligence Directorate on Wednesday.

In the clip, translated by Insider, the soldier can be heard telling his wife many members of his unit were badly injured, with some killed in action, and that they couldn’t even carry away the bodies of the dead.

“There are new bodies every day,” the soldier said. “The body is lying 100 meters from my position, and we can’t even pick it up.”

In the audio released by Ukraine, the soldier’s wife said she had seen footage that showed some Russian troops had been successfully pushing through a Ukrainian village. But the soldier, in the audio, said it was “bullshit” and that he didn’t believe it, adding he too had taken recordings on his phone meant to show Russian forces making progress.

“We here are also holding the defense real fucking good. It’s all a performance,” he said.

The soldier claimed his commander instructed him to take a video inspired by “The 9th Company,” a Russian war film from 2005.

“The commander tells me: ‘You will be Bondarchuk,'” the soldier said, a reference to Fedor Bondarchuk, the film’s director.

“So I dressed all my [soldiers] up, fucking put them in their positions, and walked around filming them in the trenches to show how fucking well they are fighting here,” the soldier told his wife, in the audio released by Ukraine. “It was all sent to some superiors.”

Insider was unable to verify the authenticity of the call or when it occurred. It’s unclear what unit the Russian soldier supposedly belonged to.

Ukraine has frequently said it intercepted calls made by Russian soldiers since the invasion in February 2022. Audio of the calls obtained by various outlets has apparently revealed Russian soldiers expressing frustration at being unprepared or treated like “cannon fodder.”

Reuters last month reported on 17 phone calls that had been placed by Russian soldiers that were intercepted by the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU). The outlet said the calls showed Russian soldiers complaining about heavy losses and lousy gear.

In June, the SBU also said it intercepted a call in which a Russian soldier admitted it was Russian forces that destroyed the Kakhovka dam in Ukraine.

Other intercepted calls published by Ukraine have appeared to show Russian soldiers complaining about the war, with one saying last year he would “pray for a wound” in order to be sent home.

Translations by Oleksandr Vynogradov.

Read the original article on Business Insider