"Does the US need this war? Looking at everything, yes. After all, every US President needs to have his own war."
With the arming of Kiev by the Trump administration, Ukraine is getting ready for a new offensive. The plan is to reintegrate Donbass
They haven't even gotten their prized weapons yet and they are already shooting! The following clip taken from Russian nightly news (with transcript below) covers the situation in Donbass.
Anchor: We'll resume right after the hearing from our military correspondent, Alexander Sladkov, about the strength of Donbass' Defence.
On Sunday, Ukrainian soldiers fired on a passenger bus outside of Donetsk. One passenger died from injuries, one was injured.
Alexander Dubov, injured:
"There were many people and I stood between the seats, it was quiet, no one was shooting or anything, and then there was some kind of flash, and I thought someone hit me. But then I saw blood on my hand."
OSCE confirmed the shooting and an injury and a fatality of DPR residents: "The bus, and you can see the hole. OSCE arrived and recorded information. At 13:20 shooting started from the Slavnoe residential area, just 1 km from here."
- So from Slavnoe?
Aleksandr Zakharchenko, Leader of DPR:
- From there. You can see the positions.
- Those are the positions!?
-There can you see?
- Yes, I can see.
DPR leader, Aleksandr Zakharchenko, called the bus shooting a result of the Ukrainian re-integration law.
- Is it related to the passed law?
- This is the first result of it.
- So they can do this and ignore the constitution and international law?
- They went around the constitution by adopting this law, which concentrates the power in one set of hands, and finishes this up quicker.
Soldiers are digging in along the whole front line, now waiting the Ukrainian offensive in any place and any minute.
A soldier: "Ukraine doesn't care about the Minsk agreements. It will re-integrate Donbass in a military manner. We will defend our homeland."
Many Donbass residents view the law adopted in Kiev as a declaration of war.
"This is war and a blockade. This isn't good."
"People in Donetsk are worried, that there will be military action and fighting."
- Denis Vladimirovich, is this war or not?
Denis Pushilin, Chairman of DPR People's Council:
- The war hasn't stopped since 2014. They are firing at the contact line regardless of school, bread, and other truces. We have long been in such a state that we expect aggressive actions from Ukraine.
Ukraine declares that it intends to return Donbass by force. Kiev openly ignores what the LPR and the DPR managed to maintain in their economy. The region is blockaded and cut off from Ukrainian financial, transport, and even cellular systems. The last Kiev communication operator left DPR. The local state-owned company, Phoenix, is working in emergency mode.
Donbass resident: "I use Phoenix, but sometimes it catches the signal immediately, sometimes no, it depends."
Viktor Lysenko, DPR minister for communication:
- It's part of the war, part of the hybrid war when they try to strangle us.
- They, this is Ukraine, Kiev.
- Yes. We are disconnected from communication, it seems we are forbidden to talk to others, we are disconnected from the universal postal union, because of Ukraine we can't receive letters. To date, many people are deprived of normal ways to communicate.
People in Donbass say that Kiev will not be able to persuade them to return to Ukraine, and, moreover, it's impossible to do this by force.
The radio operator: "Suppress target 101, this is Berkut 15."
Now in the deep rear of LPR and DPR artillery is thundering. The soldiers are reacting to Kiev's promises to take Donbass by force in their own way. Soldiers and local residents are training to fight. At training ranges regiments and brigades, companies and battalions, maneuver replacing each other.
The radio operator: "Berkut 15, this is Pomir 21, task 33 completed."
Nickname "Ivan," Recruit: "Training allows and preparation allows... As soon as someone joins, we train them, our training ranges and everything else is active."
The Ukrainian military is drawing fresh regiments and brigades to the Donbass area, increasing their size. Kiev declares that it is about to begin to receive US Javelin anti-tank missile systems. There's already a selection process of people who will be taught to use Javelin in Donbass in 7 Ukrainian army brigades. But the DPR soldiers assure that US Javelins will soon become their trophies.
"We don't have this equipment yet, but we soon will."
Nickname "Ivan," Recruit:
- Sooner or later they'll become ours, just like all the other weaponry.
- So this doesn't scare you?
- Not at all.
But in the trenches on the front line, it's now unusually quiet. The soldiers confirm that this is the calm before the storm.
- How would you describe the situation now?
"Well, we're waiting for them. Especially after this law, there is a high probability that they will go on the offensive, therefore, we are waiting for them.
"With bread and salt."
"We will meet them properly, they'll wish we didn't."
Despite the apparent calm in Donbass, a big war is brewing. And both sides are preparing for it.
Alexander Sladkov, Pavel Vidrin, Igor Ukleen, Andrey Rudenko, Oleg Bondarenko. From Donetsk - Vesti, News of the Week.
But, perhaps, we are too keen on the war? And the law about the war, which is yet to be signed by President Poroshenko, may be an empty undertaking, like many other things signed by him, and simply won't be fulfilled? But it's not about the law. The point is the pathos, which the new document claims, a mentality for war.
And if we assess what's happening again with a fresh look, then the signs of war are obvious. Poroshenko isn't executing any one of the Minsk agreements, and isn't going to. And doesn't want to have any direct talks with Donbass. Not a single truce in the conflict zone was observed. Almost every day someone gets killed. In a leap-frog fashion Ukrainian troops captured two settlements in the so-called "gray zone." And would've gone further if not for the armed resistance.
Kiev authorities gave up on the millions of their citizens in Donbass. They blocked all transport routes, aren't paying pensions and allowances, broke off trade ties, they closed their banking system, and aren't even importing the Ukrainian currency. For Kiev, Donbass is not populated by Ukrainian citizens. This is only a "territory" that needs to be returned, and liberated from the mythical "invaders" by a "military operation."
The new law creates a new command system for the military operation. NATO instructors are stepping up Ukrainian armed forces training, teaching them new types of weapons. The US, after all, decided to supply Kiev with lethal weapons for free, missile anti-tank systems. This year, US military budget set aside $350 mil. for the war in Ukraine.
Inside Ukraine, it's much safer for Poroshenko to send all these idle Nazi-criminal battalions to war.
And everything is clear with the money. Europe refused another request by Poroshenko, for 600 million euros. He asked the World Bank for $800 million, and was also refused. IMF also decided not to allocate money to Ukraine. But it's already time to pay the previous loans. This year, according to UNIAN, $11 billion, next year $11.5. In 2020, already $13.7, in 2021 and 2022 $14 billion each year. But is $14 billion a lot or not? It's half the current Ukrainian budget. Don't drink, don't eat, take it and give it back. Only a greater force will save them. And which greater force is stronger than war?
And lastly, the government in Kiev, all these Poroshenkos, and Lutsenkos, Groysmans, Avakovs, and Turchinovs with their prosecutors and grief-commanders are so unpopular and disgusting to people that it's impossible for them to run at the elections. There's no chance. War and martial law are their salvation. If only for some time.
Yes, another important point. Europe is losing interest in Ukraine. Macron is not for this part, Merkel is not up to the "Normandy Format," and she's ashamed.
This is exactly what our Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov, stated directly at the UN on Friday in NYC.
Sergei Lavrov: "By taking this government under its wing, one that's absolutely incapable of negotiating, the West can no longer publicly criticize what its dependents are doing. This is sad, and it's understandable that this is linked with a difficult to understand sense of own prestige, own reputation, but that's life."
But if there's war, then what kind of timeline? And simply, when? Right now, during the Presidential campaign in Russia. To blame Moscow for everything, to impose another agenda, and then the new sanctions. That's the logic of the US. Does Russia need this war? Absolutely not. For us, there's nothing better than the Minsk agreements, and let Kiev fulfill them. But it seems there's no return to them. Now there's a feeling that the Kiev authorities never intended to honor them. This was stated on Thursday by Valentina Matviyenko, the speaker of the Federation Council. And she also added about the law.
Valentina Matviyenko: "This isn't a law about peace and Donbass reintegration. This is a law about war, and it's necessary to call things by their proper names."
Boris Gryzlov, Russia's permanent representative to the settlement in the Donbass contact group also calls things by their proper names: "The US gave sanction to resolve the conflict in the southeast of Ukraine by force, rather than a method of political settlement."
In this context, Donald Trump's statement is interesting, that Donbass negotiations have to be moved from Minsk to another place so that there won't be any past associations.
Does the US need this war? Looking at everything, yes. After all, every US President needs to have his own war. They tried to give Trump a war with North Korea. Somehow it didn't work. Same with Iran. Then Ukraine or the Balkans, that's also interesting. Or maybe both at once. Why not? If it's bad for Russia and China, then it's good for the US. That's the US defense strategy.
And now we'll follow Ukraine and Donbass even more closely.