A former SAS operative has warned non-veteran Brits without combat skills to stay at home and 'play Call of Duty' instead of responding to Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's call for foreign volunteers.
Phil Campion, 53, joined the army in 1997 and passed SAS selection to later serve in Northern Ireland, the Balkans, and West Africa.
But the SAS hero has urged Brits who are considering signing up to fight for Ukraine to reconsider and stay at home instead.
Campion told the Daily Star: "Make sure you know why you want to go, identify the key reasons why you want to go to Ukraine.
“Identify your skill sets and what you think you can take over there because if you can’t take any skill sets over there, you’re useless.
“Don’t just think that because you’re another body that can hold a rifle you’re of use to somebody, because you’re not.
"There’s actually more of a risk that you become part of the problem.
“If you’re an average person that doesn’t bring any skills to the party, you’ve never held a rifle before, you’ve got no experience whatsoever, get yourself a decent Playstation and get yourself Call of Duty.”
Campion's warning rests on the idea that potential volunteers without past combat experience will only be liabilities when fighting against a trained standing army.
Leon Dawson, a British gym owner from Surrey with no combat experience, signed up to fight at the Ukrainian embassy in London less than a week ago and others have followed.
'Big Phil' does understand that some people who have family and friends in Ukraine may have a legitimate reason to justify travelling to Eastern Europe to fight, however.
He said: “It takes six-seven months to train a soldier and put them out on a battlefield.
"Don’t just think you can walk out of the job you are doing now, get handed a rifle and all of a sudden you’re going to be Audie Murphy, because you’re not… you’re probably going to be dead.
“The other thing is, when you go over to these places, you won’t get used on the front lines.
"If you think you’ll be over there swinging through windows, kicking doors in and being the underwater knife fighter, you’re not.
“You’re probably going to find yourself driving columns, guarding some facility. You’re not going to be doing the crème de la crème jobs, especially if you’ve got no skills in the bag.”
Campion even admitted he would think twice about fighting in Ukraine himself, even though his family is there.
He said: “At the moment I see my position on this as best advising people not to go, rather than leading by example and sending myself over there.”
However, British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said she supported those going out to Ukraine to oppose Russia in the new European war.
If you would like to donate to the Red Cross Emergency Appeal, which will help provide food, medicines and basic medical supplies, shelter and water to those in Ukraine, click here for more information.
Featured Image Credit: Instagram/@bigphilcampion