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Retired Marine Col. Andrew Milburn of Lithia says he wants to help Ukrainian soldiers defend themselves against Russian forces.

A former U.S. Special Operations commander from the Tampa area has set up a military training center in Ukraine, and along with fellow American and British veterans, is passing on skills to soldiers and delivering critical supplies.

Andrew Milburn joined the U.S. Marine Corps from London as a private and retired 31 years later in 2019 as a colonel. His last position was Deputy Commander of Special Operations Central (SOCCENT), which is headquartered at MacDill Air Force Base.

Milburn lives in Lithia, but has been in Ukraine the past month and recently formed an organization called the Mozart Group to aid Ukrainian soldiers. The name is meant to counter the Russian paramilitary organization the Wagner Group, which experts link to the Kremlin and whose members have been accused of committing war crimes.

Col. (Ret.) Andrew Milburn is in Ukraine passing on military skills to soldiers there and helping secure them equipment. WUSF’s Stephanie Colombini talked with Milburn about his work with the Mozart Group.

Read the full interview.

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