Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard
American instructors arrived to the zone of the armed conflict in Donbass to check the fighting capacity of the Ukrainian troops. This was stated by the deputy commander of the DPR Army Eduard Basurin the day before to journalists.
As a reminder, at the beginning of March the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Pavel Klimkin stated the high-efficiency of the units prepared by US specialists, which was shown during the conflict in Donbass. He thanked Washington for the support given over the last three years and asked the US senate to continue such support in the future. In addition, he asked to support the allocation of necessary means by earmarking them in the federal budget for the new fiscal year.
Earlier the President Petro Poroshenko blabbed that units trained by US instructors were among the Ukrainian group that was defeated and subsequently retreated from Debaltsevo. It should also be noted that in 2015 the British “Telegraph” reached an unfavourable conclusion: “a corrupt, impoverished, and non-professional army”. It is they who the English military will have to train.
At the end of March the Commander of the American forces in Europe General Curtis Scaparrotti stated that the US must strengthen the army of Ukraine to counter the militiamen of Donbass.
It should be noted that the US from the very beginning of the conflict in the Southeast of Ukraine gave military aid to Kiev, but officially, so far, only in the form of regimentals and equipment, while the Ukrainian authorities regularly ask to provide them with “lethal arms”. Besides this, the American instructors conduct the training of Ukrainian soldiers.
It should be noted that on Monday, April 24th, the influential American magazine Foreign Policy reported that the US intends to reduce the initially planned financial aid to Ukraine by 68.8% (from 570 million dollars to 177 million).
“Preparations for a new big war from the Ukrainian side didn’t stop for even one day,” said the adviser to the head of the DPR Aleksandr Kazakov.
“Throughout the last half a year there has been a constant concentration of manpower and equipment. Moreover, it wasn’t especially hidden. The equipment is visible, the DPR intelligence knows where it is situated. In fact, two bases with armored machinery were formed, which were created obviously not for defense purposes. There is nothing surprising in this and about the presence of American instructors.
We know that instructors from the US and the countries of Europe have participated in this conflict from the very beginning, along with representatives of private military companies. They were repeatedly destroyed by the DPR military, and this is also a well-known fact. So we are ready for war, for the offensive of Ukraine every day.”
“SP”: Are the units of the UAF trained by Americans really better than ordinary ones?
“Here we have to look at if they differ from those who were trained in 2014 or from new recruits — of course they differ. Of course, they are more prepared. But the matter is that they are trained according to western standards, that’s why during direct military clashes with our fighters, they, as a rule, suffer a defeat. One case is known when Canadian instructors wanted to show a high-class — to dig in on the territory of the DPR and cause a stir there. As a result, 10% of these groups came back, and even then with great difficulty.
That’s why on the one hand — yes, the American instructors increase the level of the fighting capacity of UAF specialists, on the other hand, considering that in principle it’s not enough, and that western standards don’t work in our war — it won’t save them.”
“SP”: The Ukrainian authorities wait for the financial aid that has been already earmarked in the American military budget. However yesterday it became known that the US intends to reduce the initially planned financial aid to Ukraine by almost 70%. Will it be reflected in the fighting capacity of the UAF?
“No, it won’t be reflected. For the reason that any help that is transferred to Ukraine in the form of bank notes, as a rule, is plundered. For this same 70%. It reaches the UAF and punisher battalions, and also not always, and only the help that has a material equivalent — regimentals, devices of night vision etc. But even these are immediately put on the Internet for sale. That’s why for the army of the enemy, the fact that help from the US increased or decreased is neither hot nor cold. They were beaten and they will be beaten.”
“American and British military instructors have long been on the territory of Ukraine on a permanent basis,” reminds the Director of the Center of Eurasian Studies Vladimir Kornilov.
“And it’s not a secret that their mission is indeed to train the UAF for the conducting of combat operations. Why else would they be there? Thus, I will note that the fact alone of their presence in Ukraine directly contradicts the Minsk agreements, which forbids the presence of foreign units and military personnel all over the country, and not just in Donbass. It is strange that Russia doesn’t highlight this contradiction…”
“SP”: It is also known that verification of the condition of the military equipment earlier transferred to the UAF is planned. Will it satisfy the American side? The UAF already learned how to behave with American gifts, or already managed to break everything completely?
“I think that a considerable part of the equipment transferred to Ukraine was already written off or utilized in various “burning warehouses” long ago. I don’t think that Americans will remain happy with the results of the audit. But it is unlikely that they will voice this — it is inconvenient for them to recognize the truth.”
“SP”: In March, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Pavel Klimkin bragged that the units prepared by Americans showed high-efficiency in Donbass. Do you agree with this?
“I don’t know precisely what military units were prepared by the Americans and in what they showed activity in this campaign. It is known that in Donetsk in the end of last year — the beginning of this year Ukrainian sabotage groups conducted a number of successful terrorist attacks. Perhaps, it is precisely they who were trained by Americans? Perhaps this is what Klimkin meant?”
“SP”: Will Ukraine receive the promised military aid from the US?
“Congress already for many years earmarked money for military aid to Ukraine. However, if Obama didn’t use this opportunity, I doubt that Trump will use it.
As for the yesterday’s Foreign Policy statement about the reducing of financing, as far as I understand the question was about a reduction of financing for USAID. Moreover, not only in Ukraine, but also in other Republics of the former USSR. But this structure, as far as I recall, wasn’t engaged in the financing of military programs. Even if it was involved in it, it is known to all that the money coming through such grants practically immediately and entirely settles in the pockets of grant-eaters and officials who divide it up between them. It is to their family budgets that this reduction will strike a solid blow.”
“The visit to Donbass of American instructors won’t change the situation in any way,” assures the Odessa writer Igor Nemodruk.
“Americans fight well against enemies with a weak technical plan. But they haven’t faced a worthy enemy, and they also avoided such collisions. It is the successors of the Soviet Army who are fighting in Donbass. Identical charters, almost identical equipment and arms. But the UAF already before the war simply plundered the part of the equipment that was inherited. And the most important — the spiritual component of this inheritance — the connection with their ancestors, their glory and victories, they simply rejected and trampled in the mud. And instead of the chopped-off roots, they try to implant some dead ideology.
While Americans, for maximum efficiency, must teach what they are familiar with — to bomb a poorly armed enemy with a minimal risk of receiving a response. For this purpose the Ukrainian fighters must be armed like Americans, equipped like Americans, the mentality must be like the American one. It is clear that nobody will give them modern and expensive weapons. So what will they teach to Ukrainians? To think like Americans? Let them think …
The UAF doesn’t have the most important thing — spirit! And without this, no weapon or tactic will help.”
“SP”: Americans don’t understand it?
“I think that Americans perfectly understand that their instructors won’t help the UAF to become victorious. But they need somehow to support Kiev elite, so that’s why they send instructors and minimal help so that the fire of war doesn’t fade. It is favorable to them to support the fire here, and for this purpose they will throw fuel onto the fire of war. So that it isn’t unprofitable for the US, but also so that it doesn’t fade.
And, besides this, the instructors who are in Donbass carry out for their administration also practical tasks — they monitor the situation, and conduct reconnaissance work …”
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