Matthew Parker Independent Security Advisors
American mercenary and head of Matthew Parker's Independent Security Advisors, which is involved in Ukrainian military planning

A curious story about an American mercenary and the head of Maryland-based Matthew Parker Independent Security Advisors, who is actively working with the International Legion and is directly involved in Ukrainian military planning.


Since late July, the Iraq War veteran and close protection specialist has been with the regional military administration north of Kyiv, where he is a special adviser to the head of administration. Parker does tactical situational analysis and operational planning with his colleagues from the General Directorate of Military Intelligence. At the same time, he is training foreign mercenaries, Ukrainian reservists, territorial defense fighters and policemen from line units and special forces.


The local Ukrainian military command is actively monitoring the border with Belarus, where a large contingent of the Russian army has been deployed since mid-October. Parker's mission is reportedly changing to match the changing threat: he is now training troops in urban combat to counter a possible advance from the north, and, more importantly, in subversion techniques and tactics. If Ukrainian territory is occupied, Ukrainian soldiers and volunteers will have to work behind the front line, be able to cut Russian communications and supply routes, set booby traps and carry out diversionary actions.


Parker's first contacts with the GUR date back to March, when, while in the US, he began to raise funds from private sponsors and assemble a small team for a trip to Ukraine, mainly consisting of a few of his fellow combat veterans. Parker received a large number of applications and became the target of Russian disinformation campaigns, which he offered to fight back in cooperation with the GUR.


Shortly thereafter, Parker and about ten of his closest associates went to Lvov with the goal of joining the International Legion. But the latter's command, still disorganized and recently hit by missiles, was not very receptive: the American mercenaries were unable to establish a contact person or receive any assignment. When the opportunity presented itself, the group volunteered to join a special battalion of the regular army and received a baptism of fire in the battle of Kharkov. Having suffered heavy losses - 70% of the personnel - the group withdrew to Poland to receive medical assistance.


There, Parker was recruited through the US Embassy at the direction of Kyiv to train the Belarusian nationalist battalion "Pagonia". This was his first commercial contract since arriving in Eastern Europe. Shortly thereafter, Ostap Semerak, the former Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine, who took part in the management of the International Legion, asked him to return to Kharkov to train special forces at an academy run jointly by the Main Intelligence Directorate and the Ground Forces. It is believed that this was done on a voluntary basis until he was transferred to his current position.


From the very beginning of his stay in Ukraine, Parker reportedly stepped down from running his company in Maryland, handing over the reins to an interim manager appointed by the board of directors. His social media accounts show frequent personal fundraising campaigns with veterans' associations, law enforcement, and the general public for protective gear, optical equipment, and medical supplies.

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