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Ukrainian rebels make fake video using weapons from the game ‘Battlefield 3’

Screengrab: / YouTube

Representatives of the self-proclaimed Lugansk People’s Republic (LNR) in eastern Ukraine have unveiled supposed video evidence that the US has delivered lethal weapons to the Ukrainian military. Russian bloggers have noted some curious details about the proof, however. Video-game blogger Anton Logvinov says the LNR video actually features fake missiles, modeled on weapons from the game Battlefield 3.

On July 22, Leonid Tkachenko, who heads the LNR's Investigative Department, announced that a storage facility containing US-made weapons (including shoulder-mounted missile launchers) was discovered at the Lugansk airport when workers were clearing away debris from last summer’s battles between the separatists and Ukraine’s armed forces. According to Tkachenko, the finding proves that the US previously delivered lethal weapons to Ukraine, despite America’s insistence that it shares only non-lethal aid.

A video posted to the LNR news website shows LNR soldiers inspecting a weapons cache. The video zooms in on some of the weapons and storage boxes with English-language labels on them.

Anton Logvinov, who specializes on writing about the gaming industry, noticed similarities between a MANPAD pictured in the video and the “Stinger” from the game Battlefield 3. Both the weapon from the video and the weapon from the game feature the words “TRACKING RAINER” instead of “TRACKING TRAINER.” This means the separatists’ video repeats the game’s spelling mistake. Additionally, the MANPAD in the video has visible welding marks.

Bloggers have drawn attention to other suspicious features of the video. For example, the labels on storage boxes feature several spelling mistakes, like “RE USABLE” and “DATE LOUDED.” Another label reads “US APMY,” switching out the letter “R” for its cyrillic equivalent of “P.”

LNR officials promise to inspect all the alleged weapons.

American Stingers found in Lugansk Airport (special footage from the LNR Interior Ministry)

For more pictures of mistakes from the video, see this gallery (in Russian).

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