Tuesday 5th of December 2023

more than a million shells.......

Ukraine will struggle to make good on its promise to drive Russian forces out of its former territory, US Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mark Milley stated on Friday. While civilian officials in Washington insist that Kiev must keep fighting, Milley has repeatedly questioned the chances of success.

“President Biden, President Zelensky, and most of the leaders of Europe have said this war is likely to end in a negotiation,” Milley said during a meeting of the US-led Defense Contact Group at Ramstein Air Base in Germany on Friday. “From a military standpoint, this is a very, very difficult fight,” he added.

The US alone has allocated more than $110 billion in military and economic aid to Kiev since last February – supplying Ukraine with progressively heavier armaments, including infantry fighting vehicles, anti-air systems, and more than a million artillery shells. 

Although Ukraine’s NATO-trained troops appear on the cusp of receiving Western-designed main battle tanks, Russian forces have inflicted a series of crushing defeats on Kiev’s military in recent weeks. The strategically important Donbass settlements of Soledar and Klescheevka have both fallen to Moscow’s troops, and the key city of Artyomovsk is now facing Russian encirclement.

“I still maintain that for this year, it would be very, very difficult to militarily eject the Russian forces from every inch of Russian-occupied Ukraine,” Milley said on Friday, referring to the four former regions of Ukraine that voted to join Russia in September, and Crimea, an historic Russian territory that voted to rejoin the Russian Federation in 2014. “That doesn’t mean it can’t happen, doesn’t mean it won’t happen. But it’d be very, very difficult.”

Retaking all of this land – including Crimea – is a stated objective of Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky. To that end, Zelensky has the support of the US, with President Joe Biden and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin vowing to bankroll his military for “as long as it takes,” and Secretary of State Antony Blinken declaring in December that “fundamentally, Ukrainians are making the decisions” about whether they want to attempt to capture Crimea or not.

However, Milley’s public statements have been more tempered than those of Biden and his cabinet. Asked in November whether Ukraine stood a chance of retaking its pre-February territory, he said that the probability of this outcome “is not high, militarily.”









the drunks of NATO....

by Al manar

"Russia is trying to bring Europe and NATO back to common sense but it remains in vain for the moment", lamented Sergei Lavrov. The head of Russian diplomacy also castigated the colonial and neocolonial illusions of the West.

Despite the hangover from the energy and economic crises, the West is still struggling to "SOBER UP". This is the bittersweet observation that Sergei Lavrov drew during a trip to Minsk. The Russian Foreign Minister believes that the EU and NATO are still far from realizing their political mistakes.

"I hope a sobering up will come. We will do everything to sober our colleagues in NATO and the European Union as quickly as possible […] We remain hopeful that awareness will come about the impasse of the policies being conducted on the European continent. But so far we see no signs of common sense on the other side of the barricades “, he thus declared.

“Presumptuous” politicians

The Minister again described his Western colleagues as "presumptuous", deploring that they place "their colonial and neocolonial illusions above the interest of their people". He called on the West to get rid of this "feeling of superiority to better understand political realities."

Despite this pessimism, Sergei Lavrov hailed the "rare voices" which call for respecting everyone's interests, including Russia and Belarus, to build a fair security framework in Europe. But these voices are unfortunately drowned “in the chorus” of those who lead the EU and NATO, underlined the Minister.

The extension of NATO to the East is one of the main causes cited for the conflict in Ukraine. Since the start of hostilities, the Atlantic Alliance has continued to support kyiv unreservedly, by sending arms or training troops. A situation that recently made Vassili Nebenzia, Russian representative to the UN, say that Ukraine had become a "NATO private military company".

The EU also remains an unwavering supporter of kyiv, despite dissenting voices such as that of Hungary, which is worried about the economic fallout from the sanctions imposed on Moscow. Several European countries now intend to deliver heavy or light tanks to Ukraine to continue hostilities. A strange reasoning which comes down to wanting "to put out a fire with gasoline", recently quipped the Russian embassy in the United Kingdom.

source: Al manar