Kiev Can Keep the West’s Attention Only by Fuelling the War in Donbass

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard


The Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Viktor Muzhenko stated that Russia can attack Ukraine from all directions. According to the General, the “threat” comes from everywhere where there are Russian troops.

Muzhenko also expressed confidence that in the event of an attack on Ukraine Russia will suffer huge losses and will not be able to control the territory even in the event that there is some movement inland. “The military capabilities of the Russian Federation are high, but not limitless. On the other hand, the leadership of Russia will have to explain the losses of their own people,” he said.

Note that the talk about the threat of “Russia’s attack” is heard in Kiev regularly, they become especially active during the Russian military exercises near the Western borders. Moreover, the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko also talked about the need for the deployment of a partisan movement in the event of war.

In addition, it should be added that the Kiev authorities constantly accuses Moscow that Russian troops are taking part in the civil war on the territory of the country. Ukrainian propaganda actively uses the terms “Russian-Ukrainian war” and “Russian aggression” to refer to the conflict in the South-East. The question arises, do the Ukrainian propagandists understand that statement that “Russia can attack” and that “Russia already attacked” contradict each other?

“Everybody understands it well,” said the Director of the Center for Eurasian Studies Vladimir Kornilov.

“You know the famous anecdote:

– Why does Ukraine fight in Donbass?
~ Because Russian troops invaded there’.
– Then why doesn’t Ukraine fight in Crimea?
~ Because Ukraine knows that there in reality there are Russian troops”.

“SP”: And how does the West perceive the Ukrainian military paranoia? Seriously or not?

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“We heard different statements from representatives of the West. For example, that in Donbass there are already thousands of Russian troops. At this time, all Western strategists are well aware that in the event of a real war of Ukraine with the real Russian army, the latter will be in Kiev within 2-3 days, and will be greeted there with flowers.”

“SP”: Muzhenko is waiting for an invasion from the South, North, and West. How to understand this? From the North it means from Belarus? Would Lukashenko allow this? And the West – where from?

“Well, if you look at the map closely, you will see that a considerable amount of the Northern border of Ukraine is indeed the border with Russia. And the West is, of course, Transnistria, where a Russian military contingent is.”

“SP”: Muzhenko expressed the opinion that in case of an invasion on Ukraine, Russia will suffer huge losses and will not be able control territory even in the event of some advanced incursion into Ukraine. Do you agree with this? Does it appear that Ukraine now has a fully-fledged army?

“No, Ukraine does not have a fully-fledged army. On the contrary, it is even more decomposed, being corrupted by looting and lawlessness, which prevails in it. But different battalions from the first days of the war develop partisan and street fighting. We saw some Western experts, who publicly recommended that Ukraine prepare for street fights for every house in Kharkov. They understand that Russia can’t bomb such cities — this is not Aleppo.”

“SP”: Kiev is still dreaming of Russia really invading them? Otherwise, how else to explain the constant military provocations against Crimea?

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“Ukraine is obliged to balance between peace and full-scale war — in order to receive aid from the West regularly, and not to provoke Russia to the status of a real threat. All the provocations connected with the fact that Ukraine and its fighters are constantly probing the limit beyond which the patience of Russia can end. And judging by the reaction of Ukrainian politicians, as well as by the fact that these provocations are becoming more and more impudent, Kiev is sincerely amazed that Russia’s reaction is still absent.”

Such rhetoric has only one aim: to receive help from the U.S. and Europe, presenting Ukraine as an outpost of the West, which solely resists “the Russian bear”, said the Deputy Director of the National Institute of Modern Ideology Development Igor Shatrov.

“Already for a long time the West has not perceived the Kiev leadership as a logical adequate partner. But now it is difficult for them to refuse this “suitcase without a handle”, because having supporting the Kiev regime, many of them have already “invested”, so to say, their political capital. The rejection of the words that were previously pronounced by them in support of Poroshenko and Co, for them is akin to political suicide.”

“SP”: In what scenario can Russia try to solve the “Ukrainian question” by force? Is Kiev able to provoke such a scenario?

“A response through force is only possible in the event of aggression from the Ukrainian side. At first glance, this seems unlikely. However, the talk about the “historical belonging” to Ukraine of the South Russian regions, in particular, the Rostov region, arises all the time in “independent” Ukraine. I’m not even talking about Crimea. And, of course, provocations will continue. I repeat: only by fuelling the situation of the conflict, Kiev can maintain the West’s attention to their problems, and it means to count on some help.”

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