Kiev becomes increasingly frustrated it is not receiving the Western support it wants.
Written by Paul Antonopoulos, independent geopolitical analyst
In the event of armed clashes, Russia will defeat a significant portion of Ukrainian military units in less than an hour. The New York Times wrote about this possibility in consultation with King’s College London PhD Candidate and US Marine veteran Robert Lee.
“If Russia really wants to unleash its conventional capabilities, they could inflict massive damage in a very short period of time,” Lee said, adding: “They can devastate the Ukrainian military in the east really quickly, within the first 30-40 minutes.”
According to the newspaper, some officials in Kiev share the same view. The head of the Intelligence Service of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, General Kirill Budanov, said that in the event of a full-scale conflict without the support of Western countries, defeating Russia in a hypothetical war is unrealistic.
The General said that the Ukrainian military would be neutralized very quickly, its leadership would not be able to coordinate defenses, nor would they be able to supply the frontline. In such a situation, frontline commanders would have to fight alone without the possibility of reserves.
“They will hold up as long as there are bullets,” General Budanov said. “They’ll be able to use what they have in their hands, but believe me without delivery of reserves, there’s not an army in the world that can hold out.”
His frustration with the West is evident as he urged for immediate aid to assist the Ukrainian military against Russia, stating: “They need to decide, either we’re allies as they declare — and in that case allies help one another — or they need to say that this is not exactly the case. If the civilized world wants to avoid catastrophe — and this will be a catastrophe for everyone — we need military technical support now, not tomorrow, not the day after tomorrow, not in a year. Now.”
Moscow has repeatedly denied the allegation that it is preparing to invade Ukraine and attributed the false claim to NATO creating a justification to place more military equipment near the Russian border. However, this has not stopped American media from pushing the false allegation that Russia is preparing to storm Ukraine, without provocation, with up to 175,000 troops.
One senior Ukrainian military official, who spoke to the New York Times on the condition of anonymity, said that if the West failed to support Ukraine, the military would open its weapons depots so Ukrainians can take whatever they want. In addition, General Pavlyuk noted that Ukraine had up to half a million people with military experience that will “start a partisan war” if they do not receive Western support.
“Eight years have passed and there are very many people with military experience who are prepared with weapons in their hands to fight,” he said.
Unfortunately for Kiev, US President Joe Biden ruled out last week the deployment of American soldiers to Ukraine. None-the-less, there are more than 150 US military advisers in Ukraine, a combination of Special Forces and the National Guard, according to two US Defense Department officials.
In last week’s video call between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Biden, the American president warned that economic sanctions imposed on Russia after 2014’s reunification with Crimea would be intensified if a war broke out in Ukraine. Although what the repercussions might be were not revealed, the New York Times believes that Biden will not commit significant military assistance beyond what has already been provided to Ukraine.
Kiev is yet to realize that the US has little interest in resolving the Ukrainian crisis. The US knows full well that Crimea is now a permanent part of Russia and that the Donbass situation can only be resolved through peace initiatives which Kiev has no interest in pursuing. From Washington’s perspective, especially as they pool more resources into opposing China, having unresolved conflicts on Russia’s borders will suffice as it is a relatively costless exercise (retrospectively speaking) that ensures permanent pressure against Moscow, thus allowing the US to concentrate more on opposing China, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region.
It does not mean that the US has become disinterested in opposing Moscow, particularly in Eastern Europe, but it also does not mean that it is willing to invest so heavily in the Ukrainian military that has no chance of matching Russia’s military might in the short and medium term. It appears that Washington wants to maintain a Cold War against Russia knowing that it cannot defend Ukraine if a war breaks out.
If a war is to occur, it could see Donbass become a part of Russia like Crimea, or it could see the Donetsk and the Luhansk People’s Republics receive official state recognition from Moscow like in the cases of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. For the US, any of these two potentialities is far worse than the current status quo, hence why it prefers for the current situation to be maintained then see the emergence of another conflict that Ukraine has no chance of winning, like in 2014.
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