Oh the shirtless strongman might be popular right now…but so was the Czar in the August of a century ago.

Volunteers are recruited from western Ukraine and Kiev, and more quietly, within the east itself. A self-published newspaper in Donetsk gives the phone number where “Ukrainian patriots” can sign up for the volunteer battalions; its editor has gone into hiding to avoid being kidnapped by the separatist fighters. Volunteers undergo training in neighbouring Dnepropetrovsk region, and their battalions can be brought under the command of the interior ministry, allowing them to operate legally. Nevertheless, the training period can be as little as 50 hours, before the volunteers are put into real combat situations.

And in great examples of British understatement I present:

Arming troops with almost no real training and sending them into extremely sensitive situations where they may be shot at with weapons from within crowds, largely made up of angry but unarmed civilians, sounds like a recipe for disaster.

It smells, looks and feels like one too.