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VICE News

Ukraine: Defending the Homeland

The Ukrainian government has announced the formation of the National Guard, after it was revealed that the Ukrainian army had only 6,000 combat-ready troops, compared with Russia's 200,000. This new volunteer force will bolster the under-staffed...

by Henry Langston
Mar 17 2014, 7:00am

Last week, the Ukrainian government announced the formation of the National Guard, after it was revealed that the Ukrainian army had only 6,000 combat-ready troops, compared with Russia's 200,000. The volunteer force—composed of people from all over the country, and featuring club promoters, students, cooks, and jewelers—will bolster the under-staffed military, now that Crimea has been effectively annexed and Russian forces are building up along Ukraine's eastern border.

The first to answer the call were the self-defense groups who fought on the barricades during last month's revolution. So we headed down to Kiev's Maidan and tagged along with them to the training grounds outside of the city for their induction day.

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