Conor Kennedy opened up about secretly joining Ukraine’s International Legion to fight against Russia in a lengthy Instagram post on Wedensday, October 19. The soldier, who famously dated Taylor Swift and is the grandson of late Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy, said that he was inspired to join as soon as he learned about the “horrific” war going on in Ukraine, but he also said that he’s since returned home. “I was deeply moved by what I saw happening in Ukraine over the past year. I wanted to help. When I heard about Ukraine’s International Legion, I knew I was going, and I went to the embassy to enlist the next day,” he wrote.
Conor, 28, admitted that he’d only told one person that he’d gone to fight, and he also only told one person who he was once he got to Ukraine, because he “didn’t want to be treated differently.” He also revealed that he was only in Ukraine for a short time. He revealed how much he wanted to help and was dedicated to protecting from Russia. “Going in, I had no prior military experience and wasn’t a great shot, but I could carry heavy things and learned fast. I was also willing to die there. So they soon agreed to send me to the northeastern front,” he wrote. ” I liked being a soldier, more than I had expected. It is scary. But life is simple, and the rewards for finding courage and doing good are substantial. My friends there know why I had to come home. l’ll always owe them for their example. I know I’m lucky I made it back, but I would also take all the risks we took over again.”
While reflecting on his time in the war, the Kennedy family member called the people he met while there some of the “bravest I have ever known,” including the legionnaires from across the globe. “As are the citizens I knew, many of whom have lost everything in their long struggle against oligarchy, and toward a democratic system. They know this isn’t a war between equals, it’s a revolution,” he wrote. “Every day, someone there sacrifices everything for a lasting peace. They can’t be asked to act alone.”
Towards the end of his post, Conor called on his followers to do everything they could to help aid Ukraine in the war, suggesting joining the Legion, donating medical supplies or helping at the border. He also warned of the global implications that the Russian attacks could have. “This war will shape the fate of democracy in this century. There’s more to say about its politics and the role of western governments there. For now, I’ll only urge you to help in your personal capacity,” he wrote.
Conor also shared the caption in a blog post on Medium. While the time that he was in Ukraine is unclear, Conor’s last Instagram post before sharing the update was posted in April, about a month after Russian forces invaded Ukraine.
He’s one of many stars that have offered support to Ukraine since Russian attacks began. Conor’s aunt Caroline Kennedy also honored Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy by presenting him with the JFK Profile In Courage award in May. “His bravery and courage are only exceeded by that of the people of Ukraine—and they are unifying the world, including Americans, to fight for freedom and the rule of law,” she said partially during her speech.