Global Times
April 20, 2022

US vows more weapons supply to Ukraine, aimed at ‘prolonged attrition’ to Russia
By Chen Qingqing and Wan Hengyi

While the Russia-Ukraine crisis enters a new phase as fighting in the Donbas region intensifies, the US and its Western allies pledged more military assistance to Kiev, ramping up efforts to pressure and consume the power of Russia.

As the world closely watches whether Moscow could quickly advance its military deployment and reach its objective of “completely liberating” Donetsk and Lugansk ahead of its planned military parade on May 9, some experts said the crisis appeared to turn into an attritional conflict that could last beyond months, on which US hegemony – the root cause of the conflict – continues fanning the flames so the US could gain more profits on geopolitical, military and economic aspects.

On the day Russia moved into the second phase of its military operation in Ukraine that has lasted two months, the US planned to supply Ukraine another $800 million in military assistance, according to media reports. The US has pledged more than $3 billion in military assistance to Ukraine since the military conflict began. Its major allies including the UK and Canada also vowed to send more weapons to Ukraine.

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“The US-led West’s continuous military supply to Ukraine aims to drag on Russia, hoping that this military conflict won’t end soon. Ukrainians are taken as proxies by the US to counter Russia,” Song Zhongping, a Chinese military expert and TV commentator, told the Global Times on Wednesday.

However, it remains unknown whether the US truly provides that much quantity of weapons to Ukraine, as it could exaggerate the true value of the military assistance, and through its Lend-Lease Program, the US could probably provide more weapons. But once the conflict ends, Ukraine has to pay back, Song said.

“The US is playing political and economic cards. On the economic aspect, it hopes to bring down Russia and help its own military industry gain more profits,” he said.

Observers also predict that the post-war reconstruction of Ukraine may involve huge amounts of money, and US companies, along with transnational corporations, could be the main beneficiaries of Ukraine’s reconstruction.

As a major instigator and initiator of wars and turbulence, the US has gained dominance over the international order via conflicts, and it’s never absent in playing up its military force in conflicts. But some of its weapons ended up at the hands of terrorists, posing a rising danger for peace and stability.

While some Western media suspect whether Putin may be aiming to declare victory in the military conflict in Ukraine on May 9 – the date to commemorate the 76th anniversary of the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany – some experts hold a cautious view on whether Russian troops could soon achieve its goals in the Donbas region as the fighting in Mariupol is not an easy one.

“From the situation in Mariupol, the Ukrainians have been fighting resolutely in recent days. With more heavy weapons, they may hinder the Russian troops’ next operations,” Yang Jin, an associate research fellow at the Institute of Russian, Eastern European, and Central Asian Studies under the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, told the Global Times on Wednesday.

“To end the military operation before May 9, I think, is almost mission impossible,” he said, noting that even if Russia declares victory, there would still be a long way to go before the crisis ends.

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The purpose of sanctions by the US-led West is not to bring down the Russian economy, but to divide the oligarchs around Putin, thus triggering a coup to disrupt the political situation in Russia, and even ultimately pull Putin out of office, Wang Yiwei, director of the Institute of International Affairs at the Renmin University of China, told the Global Times on Wednesday.

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