Has Ukraine become a Symbol of ‘Freedom’

Vladimir Putin wants his people and the world to believe Ukraine is a bastion of Neo-nazis and should be cleansed of those dangerous individus.

Opposite to what Putin wanted to become, Ukraine and Ukrainian citizens not only demonstrated great internal unity, but also managed to unite European countries and the whole world around them. This was emphasised by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy during a press conference for international and Ukrainian media in Kyiv on April 24.

The Head of State noted the incredible unity within the country after the beginning of the war.

“And it must stay with us until the end of the war, after the war… I think this is a great victory and our great weapon,”

he said.

At last, several European countries and the United States came out of their shell and came with offers to provide more and stronger weapons. On Tuesday, April 26, forty countries came together for emergency talks in Germany, at the U.S. Ramstein airbase in southwestern Germany, on bolstering the defence of Ukraine, which the US Pentagon chief believes “can win” against Russia if given the necessary means and backing. Having such a meeting at the headquarters for the United States Air Forces in Europe – Air Forces Africa (USAFE-AFAFRICA) and also for NATO Allied Air Command (AIRCOM) was not greeted with pleasure by Russia, which said those talks and decisions made over there, could lead the world into a Third World War.

However, the Russians must realise that their inhumane actions will no longer be tolerated by Western society and that their inhumane aggression must stop.

According to the Ukrainian Head of State, thanks to Ukraine, European countries have begun to understand the true meaning of NATO‘s existence, as some European high-ranking officials have said in private conversations.

“Is the Alliance able to unite quickly and resist aggression?”

said Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who further stressed that Ukraine is fighting for its existence and for peace, but it needs powerful weapons for this. And it was that repeated call which found listening ears in Germany and America.

Preciously American Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin had already said

“We believe that they can win if they have the right equipment, the right support.”

The U.S.A. is already the biggest supplier of international military aid to Ukraine, but now it pledged to do

“everything that we can to get them the types of support, the types of artillery and munitions that will be effective in this stage of the fight”,

Austin told a press conference in Poland.

Kyiv is seeking heavy artillery and tanks to repel Russian forces trying to seize complete control of its vast southern plains and the eastern region of Donbas.

In the past, before the invasion, Ukraine had already bought weapons from the Russians, and after battles in which the Russians had to flee, even more Russian war material was captured to further serve the Ukrainian army. But the Russian-made equipment which Ukrainians have been trained to use is now rare. Some countries in Eastern Europe which still had stocks have sent them to Kyiv, sometimes in exchange for newer generation US equipment, as journalists accompanying the US ministers were able to witness.

Washington, like several European countries, had, in the beginning, limited their deliveries to so-called “defensive” weapons, but now they see the need for change and have started to send heavy US-made arms, like howitzer cannons and various armoured vehicles.

“We’re also engaging our colleagues in other countries for the same type of capability, and we see indications early on that… many countries are going to come forward and provide additional munitions and howitzers,”

said Austin.

In his nightly address to the nation on April 26, Zelenskyy said:

Thanks to the courage, wisdom of our defenders, thanks to the courage of all Ukrainian men, all Ukrainian women our state is a real symbol of struggle for freedom. Everyone in the world – and even those who do not openly support us – agree that it is in Ukraine that the fate of Europe, the fate of global security, the fate of the democratic system is being decided. And above all, it is being decided what life in the center and east of our continent will be like and whether there will be life at all.

Bucha, Borodyanka, Hostomel, Okhtyrka, Chernihiv and Sumy, Izyum, Kharkiv, Volnovakha, Zolote, Severodonetsk, Rubizhne, Popasna and Mariupol… Missiles aimed at Odesa and Kramatorsk, Zhytomyr, Lviv, Kremenchuk and Kryvyi Rih… In all Ukraine’s cities and communities, Russia has shown what it really wants and can bring to Europe. What it can bring to Chișinău, Tbilisi, Helsinki, Vilnius, Warsaw, Prague, all the cities and countries that Russian state propagandists have long openly identified as alleged enemies for Moscow.

Yesterday we also heard about a series of mysterious explosions in Moldova that have raised the threat of Russia’s war in Ukraine spilling over into new territory, with unpredictable consequences. We also heard about the troubles in Transnistria where before the Russian invasion of Ukraine tanks were stationed to enter Ukraine.

The separatist authorities blamed the incidents on Ukrainian infiltrators while the Kyiv government alleged they were false-flag attacks designed to provide a pretext for an infusion of Russian troops, to add to the 1,500 already based there, just as similar blasts in the Donbas preceded the 24 February Russian invasion of Ukraine.

It looks like Russia is going to use other tactics, now also informing people with false messages, like residents in Transnistria receiving fake SMS texts on Tuesday, warning of an imminent Ukrainian attack. The Moldovan president, Maia Sandu, convened an emergency meeting of her security council and declared that forces were at play in Transnistria which were

“interested in destabilising the region”.

A Russian move into Transnistria would not only pose an imminent threat to the sovereignty of Moldova, a country of 2.6 million people which, like Ukraine, has shown increasing interest in joining Nato, but brings those European border countries closer to a war with Russia that wants the seizure of southern Ukraine, so as to give Russia control over the Black Sea coast and access to Transnistria.

On Tuesday, Nikolai Patrushev, the secretary of Russia’s security council and one of Vladimir Putin’s closest advisers, raised another grim spectre, declaring that Ukraine could fragment into “several states”, blaming such an outcome on western intervention. At the same time, the intervention and delivery of weapons by European countries and the United States could be seen as the West wanting a world war, according to the Russian government.

The Russian foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov made this very clear in his interview for television. Lavrov told Russian state media:

“Nato, in essence, is engaged in a war with Russia through a proxy and is arming that proxy. War means war.”

He also warned that the risks of nuclear conflict were now “considerable” – a claim Ukraine’s foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, said showed Moscow had lost its

“last hope to scare the world off supporting Ukraine”.

When asked about the importance of avoiding a third world war, Lavrov said:

“I would not want to elevate those risks artificially. Many would like that. The danger is serious, real. And we must not underestimate it.”

US officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, assess that Russia will now rely heavily on artillery strikes, trying to pound Ukrainian positions as Moscow moves in ground forces from multiple directions to try to envelop and wipe out a significant chunk of Ukraine’s military. Them threatening, with nuclear attacks, show how desperate the Russian federation is, now it had started this war with the idea of winning it in a few days’ time, but seeing how they are losing the battle and how they will have to answer to their own people.

A great danger for the world is when Russia feels it has been pushed into a corner too much and will then act like a wild animal to get out of that predicament.

The US estimates many Russian units are depleted, with some operating with personnel losses as high as 30% – a level considered by the US military to be too high to keep fighting, officials say.

Britain’s defence secretary, Ben Wallace, told parliament on Monday about 15.000 Russian troops had been killed since the start of the invasion on 24 February; 2.000 Russian armoured vehicles had been destroyed or captured, including 530 tanks; and more than 60 Russian helicopters and fighter jets had been lost.

Sergei Lavrov made it clear that it would be better that the US and Great Britain would come to sit around the table to talk about peace, though for the Ukrainians those world leaders to visit Moscow first on Tuesday, before travelling to Kyiv is like those

“Many other foreign officials were trapped visiting Moscow and played around just to show the supremacy of Russian diplomacy and how great they are and how they dictate the world how to behave,”

Ukraine’s foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba said. For him, the shelling of a government building in Moldova’s Russian-occupied region of Transnistria was a “planned provocation” by Russia.

“Obviously, this case is one of a number of provocative measures organised by the FSB [the Russian security service] to instil panic and anti-Ukrainian sentiment.”

The third month of the Ukrainian resistance has begun, everyone in Ukraine is concerned with peace, about when it will all be over.

“There is no simple answer to that at this time.”

said Zelenskyy.

As the Ukraine war evolves, the parties to the conflict are redefining their aims. Russia has abandoned outright conquest for now, and is seeking to carve out a contiguous zone of occupation reaching as far as Transnistria, which Putin can package as “Novorossiya”, the foundation for a new Russian empire.

The Ukrainian president has no doubt that it is only a matter of time before they shall be able to liberate their land.

Russia can spend enormous resources to support the war. To oppose even the whole free world. It can take away from its people everything that could develop Russia itself, and direct this potential to destroy the lives of neighbors.

he said. Referring to another leader who also wanted to have a Great Reich

“… the lessons of history are well known. If you are going to build a millennial Reich, you lose. If you are going to destroy the neighbours, you lose. If you want to restore the old empire, you lose. And if you go against the Ukrainians, you lose.

Zelenskyy is pleased to notice how a global anti-war coalition was formed in two months.

Sanctions have already been imposed on Russia, which have taken away its future. Ukraine receives assistance from dozens of countries. This is support in the form of weapons, finances, necessary goods, political support directly.

We are accelerating our movement to the European Union as much as possible. We have already passed a historic moment, an important stage – with the receipt and answering a special questionnaire, which was provided to each country before they acquired the status of a candidate for EU membership.

Even now, when the war is still going on, he sees how the Ukrainians are creating the necessary base for the reconstruction of Ukraine and how the West is willing to help them to restore their nation.

These are international agreements of various levels, this is the creation of special funds for the reconstruction of our state.

Even now, when Russia is still trying to seize our territory, we are demonstrating that we will give free Ukraine more opportunities for development than Russia can give not only to the occupied part of our territory, but also to its own territory, its own state.

It is obvious that every day – and especially today, when the third month of our resistance has begun – everyone in Ukraine is concerned about peace. About when all this will be over. About when and what can be a victory for Ukraine.

Though he, like many people in his destroyed country does not see a simple answer to this question.

When we gain a victory, everyone will feel it. When peace comes, everyone will see it. But for this to happen – and happen faster – we need to think not about when and what it will be. We must think every day about how to make the stay of the occupiers on our land even more unbearable.

For Zelenskyy

Ukraine is ready for peace. It was ready even when the war was going on in Donbas. It is ready even now, when the Russian invasion has become full-scale.

But for Russia to seek peace, every Ukrainian must still fight. They must defend freedom. Because every day of struggle now adds years of peaceful life after this war. After our victory.

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Preceding

US insight from the Independent for the first week of March 2022

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  5. jaishankar: Focus should be on stopping fighting: Jaishankar on Ukraine | India News
  6. Transnistria, Putin’s next target?
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  15. Russia’s Indiscriminate Attacks Spark Outrage
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Published by Marcus Ampe

Retired dancer, choreographer, choreologist Founder of the Dance impresario office and archive: Danscontact-Dansarchief plus the Association for Bible scholars, the Lifestyle magazines "Stepping Toes" and "From Guestwriters" and creator of the site "Messiah for all". - Gepensioneerd danser, choreograaf, choreoloog. Stichter van Danscontact-Dansarchief plus van de Vereniging voor Bijbelvorsers, de Lifestyle magazines "Stepping Toes" en "From Guestwriters" en maker van de site "Messiah for all".

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