Tanks for money

Now Ukraine will get tanks; US arms manufacturers will get lucrative orders and all will be quiet on the Eastern front for the West.

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By Chanakya

The war in Ukraine is throwing up interesting episodes every month. The as the war against Russia continues, the west seems to be only interested in pushing more and more arms into Ukraine, helped by massive aid that the US and its allies are dumping in the country. The latest happened late in January, when the US, primarily, pressured German Chancellor Olaf Scholz into sending German-made Leopard 2 tanks. The Germans were not happy with this development, but obviously, under massive lobbying pressure from the US defence industry, Scholz has agreed to send in at least 12 such tanks into Ukraine.

This has come after months of reluctance, this tank initiative is supposed to “be a game-changer on the battlefield”. According to reports, US President Joe Biden’s administration is expected to announce plans to send at least 30 M1 Abrams main battle tanks as well.

The “game-changer” theory is a load of bull, as any follower of the events of this absurd ‘war’ will be able to say in minutes. It is basically the Biden administration bent on selling more arms into this embattled country, benefitting the defence establishment. This was one reason for the German Chancellor sitting on the proposal for a long time. The Leopard 2 tanks will be the allied-response, but its only an appetiser. The M1 Abrams main battle tanks form the main course.

And the Kremlin spokesman said Germany’s reported decision would “bring nothing good” and leave “a lasting mark” on relations with Russia. Remember, Germany still imports life-sustaining gas from Russia.

Meanwhile, Ukrainian officials have said that they are urgently in need of heavier weapons, and say sufficient battle tanks could help Kyiv’s forces seize back territory from the Russians.

Not an interesting addition to the American initiative. Washington has cited the extensive training and maintenance required for the high-tech Abrams. As if just the tanks being sold was not enough for the defence lobby, these expenses are an addition.

Germans have endured months of painful political debate amid concerns that sending tanks would escalate the conflict and make Nato a direct party to the war with Russia. A clear giveaway in the ‘deal’ was the German officials insisting they would only agree to the transfer of Leopard 2s to Ukraine if the US also sent M1 Abrams. There has to be a deal within a deal here, and Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy seems to have become a major facilitator of these shady deals.

One must remember that, in the end, it will be Ukraine, who will be left with having to pay back the massive loans they are now taking in without question. These loans will never be written off and will stay as permanent liability, as a wheat supply from the US to India long time back was marked as Permanent Liability.

The entire war has been no more than a massive business deal, happening right in the middle of humanity. The world recession, the Covid pandemic, the natural disasters all don’t seem to matter. The weak-kneed dispensation of Joe Biden is being constantly driven to the brink by the defence manufacturing and dealing establishment of the US and while they are the direct beneficiaries of these shady deals, kickbacks will have reached several Swiss bank accounts by now, some even with Ukrainian names on them.

Listen to this. Democratic Senator Chris Coons, a Biden ally, has been quoted in the media as saying: “If the Germans continue to say we will only send or release Leopards on the conditions that Americans send Abrams, we should send Abrams.”

Hence, the German dela tactics are linked with the US selling – these are NOT donations, by the way – Abrams tanks. Not just tanks, but missilesm ammunition, rifles, food, water… every manner of need of the Ukrainians are being met by the US and its allies, and huge government funds are finally landing in private bank accounts.

The cessation of action on the Afghan front was a big loss for the US industry. A war had to be created, out of the blue. This worthless and aimless Ukraine ‘war’ has to prolonged at any cost.

The UK has not stayed far behind. It has already said it will send Challenger Two tanks to Ukraine. Poland – one of 16 European and Nato countries that has German-made Leopard 2 tanks – has been pushing to send the vehicles to Ukraine, but under export rules needs Berlin’s permission. Ukraine has asked for 300 modern main battle tanks for the ‘war’. That is a tall order.

The idea is that if half a dozen Western nations each provide 14 tanks, then that would bring the total to nearly 100 – which could make a difference. That can be financed separately and whether they be German or American or British tanks, we all know who ultimately benefits. What needs to be seen is what is the central role of the Ukrainian president and his men.

M1-Abram Tank

Each will also provide training and ammunition for quite some time to come. That will also be a great business initiative.

How long does will the world show a Nelson’s eye to these developments?

TIMELINE

Jan 1: The Ukrainian military claimed to have killed 400 Russian soldiers with another 300 being wounded during a missile attack on Makiivka in occupied Donetsk.

Jan 3: The Russian Ministry of Defence gives an updated figure of 89 dead.

Jan 4: France announces it would send AMX-10 RC and ACMAT Bastion to Ukraine.

Jan 5 : Russian Orthodox Church Primate Patriarch Kirill called for a Christmas ceasefire so that people could attend Orthodox Christmas services on 6–7 January. Turkish President Erdogan also called for a “unilateral cease-fire”; afterwards, President Putin ordered Russian armed forces to hold a 36-hour cease-fire for the Russian Orthodox Christmas.

Jan 6: The United States Department of Defence awards $40 million contract to L3Harris to provide Ukraine with 4 VAMPIRE kits (vehicle-mountable light guided missile system) in mid 2023 and 10 by 2023 year-end.

Jan 8: The Russian ministry of defence claims more than 600 Ukrainian soldiers killed during the attack on barracks in Kramatorsk. Kramatorsk’s Mayor Oleksandr Honcharenko denies.

Jan 9: Russia and Ukraine conduct their 36th prisoner swap of the conflict, with each side trading 50 POWs to the other.

Jan 10: Ukrainian steel production reduced by about 70% in 2022 as a result of the conflict.

Jan 11: Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu appoints Valery Gerasimov in place of Sergey Surovikin as overall commander of the war against Ukraine.

Jan 15: Armin Papperger, the CEO of German arms manufacturer Rheinmetall, stated that the company would not be able to deliver battle-ready Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine until 2024.

Jan 16: Ukraine admits it has lost Soledar.

German Defence Minister Christine Lambrecht resigns in part due to blunders over German support for Ukraine.

Jan 17: The US military states that Ukrainian soldiers are being trained in the United States on the Patriot Missile system.

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic condemned PMC Wagner for running a social media campaign calling for Serbian recruits to fight in Ukraine.

Jan 18: Australian Defence minister Richard Marles stated that Australian Army soldiers will be deployed in the UK to train Ukrainian soldiers in “infantry tactics in an urban, wooded and basic infantry tactics.”

Jan 20: Ukraine Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov stated that, despite the lack of agreement to export the tanks, Ukrainian soldiers would be trained on Leopard 2 tanks in Poland.

Jan 22: German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock states Germany would not stand in the way if Poland or other countries provide Leopard 2 tanks.

Jan 23: Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki stated that Poland will provide 14 Leopard tanks to Ukraine regardless of Germany’s approval; the next day, Poland officially requested permission to export them. German Defence Minister Boris Pistorius encouraged other countries to provide training on the tanks for Ukrainian soldiers.

Jan 24: Several senior and junior ministers resigned from positions in the Ukrainian government, including the deputy head of the President’s Office, a deputy Defence Minister, the Deputy Prosecutor-General and the deputy infrastructure minister.

Jan 25: The United States is expected to send 31 M1 Abrams tanks to Ukraine and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz agreed to provide 14 Leopard 2A6 tanks to Ukraine.