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- A VDV paratrooper
The VDV (Russian: Воздушно-десантные войска, Vozdushno-desantnye voyska; lit. "Air-landing Forces") is a Russian special force unit that are often sent behind enemy lines as paratroopers.
Members of the Vozdushno-desantnye voyska, or the Russian Air-landing Forces, or also sometimes referred to as "Blue Berets" because of their distinctive headgear, are seasoned fighters trained for airborne assaults and unconventional warfare. First formed before World War II, the force undertook two significant airborne operations and a number of smaller jumps during the war and for many years after 1945 was the largest airborne force in the world. An elite branch among the numerous branches of the Russian spetsnaz, these soldiers are equipped with the best the army could offer and are often tasked to field test experimental weaponry, such as the RPG-42B Rocket Launcher——a modified version of the RPG-42 "Alamut" which could fire both AT and thermobaric rockets.
The operation that brought the VDV up to fame was their assault on the ECA space station in French Guiana in October, 2048, where a contingent of VDV troops were carried by 20 IL-76s and paradropped onto the space station which controls one of the ECA Solaris Satellites. After suffering from enormous losses, a small number of VDV soldiers, outgunned and outnumbered, managed to arrive at the control room and destroyed a flight deck of the USS "Spirit of Freedom" with the Solaris satellite.
There are two types of VDV paratroopers: Gunner and RPG.