'US Anti-Russian rhetoric – preparation to deliver lethal arms to Ukraine'
RT:Despite an improving situation in Ukraine, we are still witnessing aggressive rhetoric from some US officials. Why is that?
Srdja Trifkovic: Because strategically the US political elite perceives it as an opportunity to damage Russia and they have not given up the geopolitical objective of bringing Ukraine into the Western fold and eventually even having it join NATO. And what we are witnessing right now is just the political preparation for a decision which, I believe, has already been made and that is to deliver lethal weaponry to the Ukrainian regime. Of course, the Europeans are opposed to that but this would not be the first time that the US has sabotaged and torpedoed European peace initiatives.
A good example was the intervention of then US ambassador in Belgrade Warren Zimmermann who sabotaged the Portuguese plan for Bosnia and the EU auspices which could have avoided the Bosnian war exactly 23 years ago in March of . I believe that it is both the Republicans and interventionist Democrats who are acting in unison in providing the political pressure which Victoria Nuland actually treats as welcome, because it will only provide the alibi for the Obama administration to concede to their demands and do what I believe they are already preparing to do.
RT:At what point will they supply lethal aid if, for example, the peace agreement works?
ST: First of all, they will deny that Minsk-II works at all. There will be constant accusations of fresh Russian incursions. We had one of those from Victoria Nuland [on Wednesday] even though there was no evidence to substantiate the claim. So we will continue to hear this rhetoric of Russian non-compliance and demands for poor defenseless Ukrainians to be supplied with weapons to defend themselves. But if they do go ahead, I think that there will be something of a rift within the Western alliance because the Germans and the French in particular, will know that this is a deliberate sabotage of Minsk and not an action that reflects the realities on the ground. I also believe that in that case the Russian government will be much less circumspect about actually helping the Donetsk and Lugansk republics and effectively doing what they have already been accused of having done.
RT:How could arms shipments from the West impact the situation?
ST: Well first of all let’s look at the kind of weaponry they are likely to supply: artillery suppression radar systems, communication equipment and anti-tank weaponry. For all of those it will take a few months for the Ukrainians to be trained in their use because at the moment they have Soviet stock which is out of date and which is certainly not up to NATO standards. So I think that if they do so, we are looking at perhaps a new government offensive sometime in mid-summer probably not before that, but the point is that in strategic terms the US government both the executive and the legislative branches are obviously treating this as a major geo-political game in which Russia is the one who is in the crosshairs and the Ukrainians are treated as collateral damage.
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