May 23, 2022

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Українська світова інформаційна мережа | Ukrainian Worldwide Information Network

SHOW SOME STEEL!

3 min read

Thoughts from Kyiv – morning 13 March. We awoke this morning to ominous news of what happened last night:

1. At least eight Russian rockets attacked the international military training center in Yavoriv in western Ukraine. The base is located in direct proximity (less than 10km) to the Polish border. Throughout the past 8 years, Canadian, US and other NATO military trainers have been stationed at the facility.

Update: latest news from Lviv mayor Andriy Sadoviy almost 30 rockets were fired. 35 people killed, 134 wounded. The Russian missiles were apparently fired from aircraft flying out of Saratov, and were launched from positions over the Black Sea.

2. The air raid warning equipment in Ivano-Frankivsk again failed to be activated in time to presage a rocket attack on that city’s airport. The technical issue is being investigated, but clearly the Russians are no longer limiting their assaults on central and eastern Ukrainian targets

3. Previous news of a possible threat from Belarus, from the military facility in Brest (150 km from Kovel in the northwest corner of Ukraine) seems to be overblown. The Belarusian forces there are apparently in mass mutiny – refusing orders to invade across the Ukrainian border. Nevertheless, sorties of Russian aircraft from bases in Belarus continue, and Russian commanders are apparently being brought to Brest to replace Belarusian mutineers.

4. Russian terror in the southeastern region continues: after the disappearance of the mayor of Russian-occupied Melitopil which sparked yesterday’s valiant civilian protests on that town’s main square, the mayor of Dniprorudny (a town in Zaporizhzhia oblast) was also kidnapped last night. Previously, the Russians kidnapped and killed the mayor of Hostomel (a town northwest of Kyiv). This morning, the mayor of Irpin posted a video demonstrating that he is still in post, bravely defending his town from the surrounding Russian troops.

5. The Russians continue to taunt NATO with threats of a possible nuclear “accident” in Chernobyl, possible chemical weapons attacks, possible attacks on western countries’ convoys sent to Ukraine with military equipment (Stoltenberg has stated that an attack on such a convoy would be tantamount to a breach of Article 5 – we shall see).

The attacks on Yavoriv, and the taunting of NATO by Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister who warned that the invader considers arms shipments to Ukraine “legitimate targets”, are indicators of what many of us have been saying for many days: World War III has already started. Russia is continuing to test the “red lines” of the West and will continue to escalate as long as it is allowed to.

In their minds, Ukraine is just a “theatre of operations” – the war has already gone global.

In this context I am confused why the major western news sites (BBC, CNN), seem to not be focusing on last night’s Iranian missile strike on Erbil in Iraqi Kurdistan. Reuters, Fox and DW report explosions near the US Consulate, and some claim damage to the building. Iran (or at least certain elements within that country’s elite) cooperates with Russia. I interpret this attack as another test of US resolve. So far, the US (non)response will be interpreted in Russia as yet another sign of weakness.

This morning, video was released of Russia firing banned phosphorous weapons (fire bombs) last night on the town of Popasna (Luhansk oblast). This, in addition to the use of thermobaric weapons (vacuum bombs) last week. Yesterday, evidence of the use by Russia of cluster bombs (also banned) in Ukraine was presented by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. Humanitarian corridors continue to be shot at by Russian soldiers in Bucha, Hostomel, Mariupol, Kharkiv, Sumy, Chernihiv… The list goes on.

Russia is taunting Ukraine’s NATO allies – goading them into engagement. The longer you hold out, the more they will terrorize the world. More time for more Ukrainians to die.

Apparently, Lenin once advised military strategists: “probe with bayonets: if you find mush, push. If you find steel, withdraw”. So far, the West’s response has been “mushy”. Putin knows it.

This morning, Ukraine’s valiant Minister of Defense Oleksiy Reznikov again appealed to the West: Protect our skies!!! Please!

Show some steel!!!

Mychailo Wynnyckyj

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