Putin begins targeting western arms shipments

Russian President Vladimir Putin has sent perhaps the strongest message yet that if the West continues to step up Ukraine’s arms shipments, the West will be targeted. Precision hits near Kyiv on Sunday destroyed a parking lot full of tanks sent in from Eastern Europe and a train repair shop believed to be setting up rail vehicles for transporting military equipment near Kiev on Sunday. It is the first time in more than a month that the capital has been targeted in this now 114-day-old debacle.

Putin warned that such targeted attacks would continue – in a statement by lackeys – claiming that any further Western shipments of long-range missile systems, tanks or weapons would trigger targeted attacks, adding menacingly that they would “hit objects that we… haven’t hit yet.”

It’s perhaps no coincidence that the Biden administration just pledged $700 million for medium-range precision-guided missile systems, in addition to Javelin anti-tank missiles, radars, helicopters, and other hardware. The UK on Thursday pledged M270 missile launch systems capable of hitting targets at a range of 50 miles, which the UK Foreign Office said would give Ukraine “a significant performance boost”.

As Russia attacks western depots, it is also making significant strides in the Donbass region, where fighting began in 2014, destroying a number of workshops in the Donetsk region, including a repair shop storing damaged military equipment used by Ukraine , has been repaired. According to the AP, one of the five X-11 missiles fired at Kyiv nearly hit the Energoatom nuclear power plant in Pivdennoukrainsk, sparking new fears that Ukraine’s substantial nuclear power infrastructure remains a threat to the whole of Europe.

Britain’s Defense Ministry said Russia likely moved its air defense systems to Snake Island to protect it from incoming attacks, which is now better possible thanks to donations from Ukraine’s western allies.

On Sunday, Putin lashed out at the West again, blaming them – not him – for prolonging the war he started on February 24. “All this excitement about additional arms shipments has, in my opinion, only one goal: to draw the gunmen out of as much conflict as possible,” he said in a scripted interview aired on Russian television Sunday night.

Russia also seemed pleased with the effectiveness of sanctions – or lack thereof, announcing that it would indeed see an increase in profits thanks to the increase in energy costs caused by the sanctions. “Considering the price level established as a result of Western policies, we have not suffered any budgetary losses,” Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told Bosnian Serb television over the weekend. “On the contrary, this year we will significantly increase profits from the export of our energy commodities.” Putin begins targeting western arms shipments


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