Texan Man Who Fought for Russia Kidnapped By Russian Soldier, Found Dead

Russell Bentley, alias the “Donbas Cowboy,” after the establishment of a puppet state in eastern Ukraine in 2014, joined Russian soldiers. After becoming a darling of Russian propaganda, he gained a Russian passport and a reporting position with state-run Sputnik TV.

In Donetsk, which Russia has controlled for the last ten years, Russian forces detained Bentley on April 8, thinking he was a spy for the United States or NATO. Eleven days later, he was purportedly found dead. In the past, Bentley was well-liked by American propaganda and even got a job reporting for the state-run Sputnik TV.

Bentley sought refuge in Russia after Putin’s 2014 invasion of Ukraine, which resulted in the deaths of more than 14,000 people in Donetsk and Luhansk over two years. The fact that he spent time in the US Army made him a favorite of Russian propagandists, who used him to support their story about the annexation by portraying him as a “genuine American.” Unfortunately, he got involved with Russian ultranationalist groups throughout the fighting and is presumably deceased, joining a string of other prominent figures who were involved in the takeover of eastern Ukraine. Some have pointed the finger at the widespread anarchy in the seized Ukrainian lands as the cause of Bentley’s downfall.

Texan Russell Bentley and his wife Lyudmila were waiting at an administrative office in Donetsk when they saw a massive column of smoke after a strike. Bentley hurried to aid the villagers. In a video she posted after he vanished, Lyudmila claimed to have uncovered credible evidence that he was unlawfully imprisoned. She said she had attempted to track down her husband after his departure but only found his car and hat left on the seat.

Telegram’s famous encrypted social media channel was the rapid breeding ground for rumors of Bentley’s demise, although the cause of his death was not explained.The forum heard from former Ukrainian politician and staunch supporter of Putin’s 2022 invasion, Oleg Tsaryov, who called for the apprehension and punishment of those responsible for the murder of Bentley.

Bentley ended his relationship with his yoga teacher girlfriend and joined the Russian army in 2014, after Putin’s invasion, even though he hardly spoke Russian. He rationalized the action by saying he was protecting innocent people from evildoers and that the world had a fighting chance now that they were kicking Nazis.