One Ukrainian’s Story: How Mustang trolls the Russian government 

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2014/08/28 • Ukraine

TSN.ua tells the story of a Ukrainian roofer [urban free climber] who alarmed all of Moscow

On [Ukrainian] Independence Day, the Ukrainian roofer known as Mustang Wanted climbed a Moscow high-rise building, repainted the Soviet star atop it blue and yellow, and raised the Ukrainian flag, becoming a true internet hero.

The roofer primarily dedicated this feat to Ukraine’s Independence Day, but also stated he was ready to face the Russian court for his “hooliganism” in exchange for the release of Ukrainian pilot Nadiya Savchenko, currently being held illegally in Russia.

Breathtakingly extreme 

Mustang Wanted was already world-famous before that moment. His incredible videos of climbing various high rises all over the world have been seen by almost every teenager. The roofer has done many extreme climbs and dangerous stunts. He has a vast army of followers who watch his videos with baited breath.

25-year-old Mustang Wanted, whose real name is Grygoriy, started his extreme hobby ten years ago. Back then the young man started climbing skyscrapers, bridges, construction sites, and other urban heights, including the Troitsky Bridge, Princess Tower in Dubai, the Moscow State University building, and the peak of one of the buildings on Maidan. However, this is far from being a complete list of the sites the roofer has managed to climb.

Participation in the ATO and Euromaidan

It is noteworthy that Mustang did not sit on the sidelines during revolutionary events but actively participated first on Maidan and then as part of the volunteer battalion Azov. This is evident in the photos on his Facebook page, which, by the way, has almost 250 thousand followers.

In one of his interviews, the roofer shared his fears and concerns. “It is not scary to climb a roof and Maidan is not scary either, it is just painful to see people dying. I ended up being there when they shot the Heaven’s Hundred, I was with those people during the attack. It was cruel.”

Besides his extreme activities and active participation in the Maidan revolution, Mustang was also an active volunteer for Hromadske TV. His movie, filmed on Institutska, was later shown on Hromadske and even at the festival in Cannes.

Despite everything, Mustang never admits to actually being afraid. When talking about fear, he uses more abstract terms without being precise. “In general, fear is a very broad topic, it is not some mathematical equation which can be clearly identified. There is fear and there is anxiety. Anxiety is what happens before a test at school, fear is when the person is incapable of doing anything.”

“I don’t like answering this question. If I were to say that I am afraid of nothing, first this might not be true and secondly it might look like boasting. And if I say that I am afraid of everything or something, first this might not be true and secondly it will reveal my weaknesses for no obvious reason,” says roofer Mustang Wanted.

Interestingly, after the scandalous repainting of the star on the Moscow skyscraper, Mustang climbed another highrise in Moscow. This time it was the Moscow State University on Independence Day. In this manner, the roofer decided to congratulate all of Ukraine on the holiday.

Chaos on social media

These events did not leave Russians impartial – a real scandal broke out and Mustang’s behavior is still being discussed on social networks. Most talk is about the fact that the Russian government arrested four innocent people, who then faced 7 years in prison for vandalism, although later the charge was reduced to “hooliganism.”

Another topic for discussion is the fact that Mustang Wanted fooled propagandist channel Lifenews, by selling them an exclusive video of his climb and then uploaded it to his Facebook page.

Later the young man said he gave the 5 thousand dollars the Russian channel paid him to the Donbas battalion. So, it turned out that Lifenews unwittingly financed the Ukrainian soldiers.

While Russia is still discussing the actions of the Kyiv roofer, Ukrainians express significant pride in Mustang, who is not only an online hero but also an example for many of our countrymen.


Source: TSN

Translated by Mariya Shcherbinina, edited by Elizabeth Martin

 

 

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  • Dirk Smith

    Great story. True patriot.

  • Inna Mart

    Mustang Wanted is the 2014 Troublemaker Award winner !

    He earned the prize by:
    1) in the middle of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, painting the star on top of a Stalin era Moscow landmark into the yellow and blue colors of the Ukrainian flag.
    2) selling the exclusive rights to the video of his action to the Russian propoganda outlet “LifeNews” for $5,000 .
    3) donating this $5,000 to the all volunteer Donbass Batallion which is fighting in the war against the Russian aggressors.

    https://www.facebook.com/TroublemakerAward

  • John H Newcomb

    Good story but I think Russian law treats hooliganism as a more serious charge than vandalism. Jail time would be 7 years max for hooliganism and 3 years max for vandalism.