Great form from the British readers especially. Respect.
Last week a Russian special forces officer was killed in the battle to liberate Palmyra – reportedly as a hero, in an air strike he had called in on his position realizing it was being surrounded by ISIS fighters:
A serviceman of Russian special forces has heroically died near Syria’s Palmyra, drawing the fire upon himself, an officer from the Russian Hmeimim airbase in Syria said on Thursday.
He said the officer was killed "while performing a special task to direct strikes of Russian warplanes to IS targets near the settlement of Tadmor (Palmyra, Homs province)".
"The officer had been on a combat mission near Palmyra for a week, spotting major facilities of IS terrorists and giving exact coordinates for strikes by Russian warplanes," the officer said.
"The serviceman died heroically, drawing the fire upon himself after he had been spotted by terrorists and surrounded," he said.
Most western media simply relayed this story in a bare bones news agency style. At least three British papers, The Sun, Daily Mail and Daily Mirror, however paid the fallen Russian soldier a proper tribute:
The fearless officer was directing Russian airstrikes at Islamic State targets near the ancient city of Palmyra in Syria when he was surrounded by terrorists.
The fearless soldier was surrounded by jihadis while on a secret deployment directing aerial bombardment on targets near the ancient city of Palmrya.
Facing certain death he radioed Russian jets ordering them to attack his own position and died in the blast along with a number of ISIS fanatics.
His heroics came as an elite team of Russian "advisors" helped the Syrian army drive ISIS out of Palmyra.
The Sun, Daily Mail and Daily Mirror correspond to Britain's #1, #2 and #4 papers by circulation.
The three papers, however, were only comfortable describing the fallen Russian soldier as "brave", "fearless" and a "Rambo", but balked at labeling him a hero themselves.
But their readers did not. The most positively received reader's comments on the articles were the ones hailing the Russian soldier as a hero and saluting his sacrifice:
BARGET, SOUTH YORKSHIRE, United Kingdom (3760 up votes):
RIP sir a true Russian hero.
xredsx, tilbury, United Kingdom (2750 up votes):
Remember he sacrificed himself for the whole of humanity. May justice, peace and mercy prevail among the nations.
SK_1985, London, United Kingdom, (2120 up votes):
Bravo Soldier! A True Hero. RIP
Jack Bigham, Ohio, United States (1900 up votes):
Well done, Sir. My condolences to your family and the Russian people. If we can put aside our petty political differences, we could destroy ISIS in short order. The civilized people of the world must stick together against this threat.
aquaplex, london, United Kingdom (1710 up votes):
Amazing act of courage to direct a strike on his location. He knew what the alternative would be and we all know it's wouldn't be as quick an end as a direct strike. Taking the filthy pigs out at the same time saved many lives he should be given the highest honor and his family well looked after. What a legend !
thetruth, preston, United Kingdom (1420 up votes):
He definitely. Go to heaven .. Unlike the daesh lot who will definitely... Go to hell... This Russian Guy should receive a medal of the highest honour and no doubt Putin will do so. But has for these soulless being's daesh they all need wiping out from the face of this earth. even the sympathisers who are just has bad as daesh ...RIP to this Russian soldier
Peter, London (1290 up votes):
We are so used to the 'video game' warfare of smart bombs, we tend to forget the brave special forces near or behind ISIS lines acquiring targets for the drones, pilots and artillery. As this Russian soldier paid the ultimate price, I was thinking what must have been going through the pilot's mind with the awful choice of giving their countryman a quick death, rather than them being captured alive. RIP.
The Russian service to humanity in rolling back ISIS, and now a heroic Russian sacrifice in that fight, may make life harder yet for those western ideologues and officials who clamor for conflict and tension between the west and Russia.