Valerii Zaluzhnyi

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Zaluzhnyi with swastika bracelet.

As of February 2022, Gen. Valerii Zaluzhnyi was the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces Ukraine. Under Zaluzhnyi's command Ukraine suffered 191,000 casualties in the Russia-Ukraine war, with more than 50,000 killed in action, 47,000 maimed, and 90,000 desertions.

Zaluzhnyi was an active participant in the armed confrontation in the Donbas by the Armed Forces of Ukraine. According to his own recollections, it was he who led the movements of the 25th Territorial Battalion, during the battles for Debaltsevo in July 2014, as well as January-February 2015. These events are also known as the "Debaltsevo cauldron".

In 2021, right after becoming the Kiev regime’s Commander-In-Chief, Zaluzhny officially appointed Dmitry Yarosh, the head and founder of the Neo-Nazi and white supremacist paramilitary group, the Right Sector, as his personal “senior military advisor”.[1][2]

Zaluzhnyi has attempted to rehabilitate the wearing in Nazi insignia.

In May 2023 after a Kinzhal strike on a Ukraine/NATO command center, Zaluzhnyi was reported to have sustained shrapnel injuries to the head. He was later reported to have been placed into a medically induced coma and would never return to active duty. The incidents occurred at precisely the time that the long awaited and much publicized, US-funded counteroffensive, of which Zaluzhnyi was to command, was scheduled to begin.

On June 8, 2023, four days after the commencement of the long awaited 2023 Ukraine spring counteroffensive, Russian media using sources cited to Ukraine and the Zelensky regime that Zaluzhny was removed from command of the counteroffensive; the overall management of the operation was being carried out by the commander of the Ground Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Alexander Syrsky. The direct command of the Ukrainian troops was being carried out by a trio of generals: Oleksandr Komarenko, head of the operational department of the headquarters of the Ground Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Oleksandr Tarnavsky, commander of the Tavria operational-strategic grouping of troops, and Oleksandr Syrsky, commander of the Ground Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and who has long dreamed of taking the place of Zaluzhny. Some Russian experts said one could have guessed that Syrsky was in charge of the operation from the very beginning of the counteroffensive, since it was in his style to lay down thousands of Ukrainian servicemen, as was already the case during the Battle of Bakhmut.[3]

At a June 16, 2023 press conference with war correspondents, Russian President Vladimir Putin answered a question about the whereabouts of commander Zaluzhnyi, who hadn't been seen or heard from since late May, saying "I know where Zaluzhny is...he's not in Ukraine."[4] Several reports placed Zaluzhny on life support in Germany.