NatSecMedia covers security issues around the globe. Currently, the focus is on Ukraine and related topics. Reports from in the country and abroad will focus on the Russian war against the Ukrainian people.

Alex Drueke: Return to the Fight

Drueke, or as he’s known, ‘Bama’, has returned to Ukraine to continue the fight without ambiguity to the force he’s fought against already. He knows the character of the Russian forces and who is really in charge in Donetsk, the FSB.

Drueke said it was important to know what the civilians have been subjected to by Russian invasion forces. He said he knew the Ukrainian forces can win if given the supplies to prevail. “I understand we have our own domestic issues back home,” but “people need to realize this is a world wide issue this is a bigger issue. If Putin is not stopped here and turned back, he’s not going to be satisfied. He’s going to go for the Baltic states, Moldova, then Poland, then NATO’s involved.”


Druke arrived to Ukraine in April 2022. He was deployed with a drone recon unit, 8 people, to spot artillery. They were delayed for departure and arrived with a fire fight in process. The team got split up. Some stayed to find missing guys, but split further, before facing a mechanized battalion of Russian forces. For over two hours they held in position and then tried to hike out for 8 hours. Ultimately however, they were captured on June 9, 2022.

Now in Russian custody, Alex Drueke and Andy Huyhn were held for 104 days until their release in September. During this time, they were subjected to torture by the FSB and used as propaganda tools to dissuade Americans coming to Ukraine to fight against the invading force. Drueke said the number one thing the Russians wanted to hear was, “That we were CIA.” He continued that the Russians wanted him to say, “that the CIA sent us, that they paid our way, that the U.S. government was directly involved and we were CIA.”

Sticking together, the two of these men survived in captivity by playing chess with random trash they could find and other means of distraction till the time they were released. Alex committed to seeing that Andy made it through.


During their captivity, both were forced to make videos renouncing coming to Ukraine. Drueke was forced to say he had been treated properly and well fed. He showed no obvious scars. But he told the rest of the story that this was so they could use him on video. Several interviews before this one have covered the abuse which included beatings, electrocution and more.

But in this context, one American who supposedly fled to Russia was keen to be the “POW Whisperer”. John Mark Dougan, aka BadVolf, is a ignominious being who was overwhelmed with surprise that he would get a call to interview a captured American fighter.

Dougan’s released “interviews” with captured British fighter Aiden Aslin, who was captured on April 12, 2022. Aslin was a big deal to the Russian propagandists at the time. He had arrived to Ukraine in 2018, fought along side YPG in Syria against ISIS and returned to Ukraine before the full scale invasion. When he took the call to talk with Drueke, he seemed confused about Druke’s story and updated himself in the middle of the “interview”.

What stood out most about the “interview” conducted shortly after Drueke was captured, already beaten and tortured, Dougan asked him to file a request for America to negotiate a prisoner swap of Drueke for Julian Assange. This demand should be looked at for all available legal actions as an American using a captured American to demand a release of a detained individual implicated in conspiracy to hack and steal American intelligence.

The interview ceased to be journalism at this point and turned into what the real objectives of these videos aimed to be, propaganda to attack support for Ukraine, to hide the war crimes of the Russian invasion and the complicity of John Mark Dougan and others like him who have built petty careers out of being Russian policy shills in their invasion of Ukraine and decimation of Syria.

Dougan knew that these interviews were under duress and was on a quick dial on the same phone for FSB who knew who to use to interrogate the captured British and American fighters. Dougan had worn the uniform in his has been days before departing West Palm Beach police after a mere 3 years of service and a lot of chaos outsized by the value of the man himself. During this time he paraded his strong associations with Russian hackers and invented “BadVolf” before accepting the brand for himself.

Drueke had no hesitation to call Dougan a “piece of shit, he’s a traitor.” Asked what he thinks about an American who would participate in interrogating and hostage swap propaganda, “I think it’s horrible.” “You’re a horrible person, because you know what they’re doing to us. You know what they were doing to me and Aiden.”


On September 21, 2022, as a part of ongoing prisoner swaps, the influence of several countries has been paramount to the effort. Saudi Arabia specifically worked to secure the release of Drueke, Huyhn, along with five Brits, one Moroccan, one Swede, and one Croat fighter. It is unknown what Saudi Prince MBS would want in return for the effort.