Amid World War 3 worries and speculations, Russia and the United States are engaging in war of words, accusing each other of escalating the 1-year-old conflict in eastern Ukraine.
Russia, for its part, is up in arms about the recent US’s decision to send its military trainers in Ukraine. Although Washington sends its 300 US paratroopers to Lviv, which is in west Ukraine, Moscow believes that US troops are being deployed to the combat zone in east Ukraine.
The United States, in turn, believes that Russia has recently stepped up its military presence in Donetsk and Luhansk by conducting military drills and deploying air defense systems near the frontline.
A State Department spokeswoman, Marie Harf, said Wednesday there is “the highest amount of Russian air defense equipment in eastern Ukraine since August.”
“Combined Russian separatist forces continue to violate the terms of the Minsk 2 agreement signed in mid-February,” she said and added: “The Russian military has deployed additional air defense systems into eastern Ukraine and moved several of these nearer the front lines.”
To nobody’s surprise, the Kremlin denied the accusations and said there is no Russian military presence in Ukraine. I wonder, will the Russian President Vladimir Putin then admit that there indeed were Russian troops in Ukraine like he did over a month ago officially stating that there were Russian troops annexing Crimea?
US Accusations Are Warming Up the Public
Russia’s Defense Ministry spokesman Major General Igor Konashenkov said the US’s accusations of Russian air defense units being in eastern Ukraine are “astonishing in its incompetence,” TASS reported.
In Konashenkov’s opinion, Harf’s statements were aimed to “warm up” the public ahead of the NATO summit, which is set to take place in Antalya, Turkey on May 13-14.
He also said that the world should be concerned over the US’s move to begin training Ukraine’s National Guard “directly in the combat zone near Mariupol, Severodonetsk, Artyomovsk and Volnovakha.”
Washington, however, denies having its troops in these regions. Furthermore, it has called these claims “ridiculous attempt to shift the focus” from Russia’s own activities in the region.
“Russia continues to supply lethal weapons, training and command-and-control support for armed separatists in eastern Ukraine, in blatant violation of Moscow’s Minsk commitments and Ukraine’s sovereignty,” said Eileen Lainez, a Pentagon spokeswoman.
Russian-backed Rebels are Excited about Fighting the Americans
Didn’t the United States President Barack Obama say Washington is not going to supply lethal aid to Kyiv government as long as the ceasefire is holding? And can what is happening in eastern Ukraine now be called “a holding ceasefire”?
The US troops’ training exercises will last for 24 weeks (until October 31, 2015) and involve some 900 Ukrainian service personnel, Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko and US Vice-President Joe Biden agreed earlier this spring.
There were numerous comments by pro-Russian rebels in Russian media that such a move will only motivate them engage in more severe fighting due to their openly expressed hatred to the Americans.
The questions is: if during the next weeks or months there will be reports of the US soldiers getting injured, or worse, dying – will the Obama administration finally begin supplying lethal weapons to Ukraine’s government?
Furthermore, thanks to having many of its spy agents in Ukraine, it is obvious that Russia will monitor the training closely, trying to learn the tactics of the US army in order to be able to use it in case military confrontation between Moscow and Washington begins.
The US will be completely wiped off the face of the Earth, editor of Europesolidaire Jean-Paul Baquiast has recently written. He believes that when the US realizes it cannot counter Russian threats by conventional and non-military means, it will try to destroy it with its armed forces. And in case an armed confrontation happens, the US will most likely perform a series of preemptive nuclear attacks against Russia.
Despite the European-brokered ceasefire signed in mid-February, the West is still worried that pro-Russian forces could further advance into Ukraine, particularly during the World War 2 victory celebrations on May 9, in an attempt to finally make a land bridge between Russia and the annexed Crimea.
The training is a significant upgrade in US involvement in Ukraine, which has been promised by US officials so many times and came true just now. Russian and US soldiers are now within 800 miles of each other in Ukraine.
The latest United Nations Human Rights report said more than 6,110 people have been killed since the fighting between pro-Russian rebels and the Ukraine troops began.
Ukraine Prepares for Russia’s May 9 Attacks
Meanwhile, Ukraine is taking safety measures to be ready for any attack by the Russian-backed separatists or Russian agents during May 8-9 celebrations of victory over Nazi Germany in 1945, which usually bring thousands of people on to the streets.
“We are fighting a state which has planned dozens of terrorist acts and we must do all we can to head them off. Social, political and ideological detribalization – that’s the aim of Russia.” Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk said.
Yatseniuk also said that Russia was spending a lot of money on financing terrorist networks to destabilize the situation in Ukraine. The question is: where does Russia get so much money from?
As part of the measures, Ukraine is planning to get tens of thousands of police to guard the most probable locations of the attacks, top security officials said on Tuesday.
Could Russia revenge the US’s decision to send its troops to Ukraine and attack the remaining territory of Ukraine during the World War 2 victory celebrations on May 9 and thus begin the World War 3?