Ukraine’s army commander Gen Ruslan Khomchak says Russia has deployed 28 battalion tactical groups near Ukraine’s eastern border and in Crimea. This is 20,000-25,000 troops. Russian officials have not confirmed that, nor given any precise figures. The Russian military has confirmed that an airborne assault brigade – about 4,000 troops – is being redeployed to Crimea from Volgograd in southern Russia this year.
At least four Ukrainian soldiers were killed in clashes with Russian-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine yesterday.
The Russia-Ukraine situation has been in a stalemate after it first erupted in early 2014. Shelling and skirmishes still occur regularly, including an escalation in violence in the spring of 2018. In March 2018, the State Department approved the sale of anti-tank weapons to Ukraine, the first sale of lethal weaponry since the conflict began. In July 2018 the Department of Defense announced an additional $200 million in defensive aid to Ukraine, bringing the total amount of aid provided since 2014 to $1 billion.
In March, the US gave $125 million military aid package for Ukraine, the first of its kind under the Biden administration. The biggest items included are two Mark VI patrol boats produced by SAFE Boats International, bringing Ukraine’s fleet up to eight of the vessels.
The Obama-Biden administration did not send lethal weapons to Ukraine.
The Ukraine 2021 state budget bill passed Dec. 15, 2020 has Hr 267.1 billion ($9.6 billion) for defense, 8% more than in 2020. This would be nearly 6 percent of the country’s estimated gross domestic product. Most NATO countries spend less than 2% of GDP on defense. However, this budget is exaggerated. The Ukraine Defense Ministry in 2021 is going to get only Hr 117.6 billion ($4.2 billion) — at least Hr 127 million less than what was spent on the armed forces in 2020. The funding increase will go to the 300,000-employee Interior Ministry. the Interior Ministry is led by Arsen Avakov, the nation’s top cop. Avakov got a 4% spending bump for 2021. This was money for the police and the National Guard.
Ukraine has been trying to get into NATO.
Ukraine has a population of 43 million vs Russia with 142 million.
Russia has about 12000 tanks while Ukraine has 2000. Both have a lot of old gear from the USSR days. Russia’s economy ($1.7 trillion) is about 11 times bigger than Ukraine ($160 billion).
SOURCES- BBC News, CFR, Defense News, Kyiv Post, Wikipedia
Written By Brian Wang, Nextbigfuture.com
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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33 thoughts on “Russia-Ukraine Buildup 2021”
I have three words for you: "Nuland Cookie Monster" The US funded and organized the illegal coup in Kiev that toppled the government of Ukraine in 2014. This act by the US not only violated Ukraine's sovereignty but also international law. Russia responded by this act of (semi-covert) aggression by A) reuniting with Crimea and B) supporting eastern Ukrainians in their fight against the US installed regime.
Back in the 1990s, the US had promised not to expand their military block, the North Atlantic Pact (NATO), past the borders of a united Germany. What ever happened to that promise ? The Russians were painfully (and dangerously) naive about the US and potential future developments.
Russia had also made a request to join NATO back in 1954 but they were turned down. Then in the late 1990s the question was raised again but nothing came of it. (For obvious reasons)
This is not particularly surprising since NATO is lead and controlled by the US and the US does not want or tolerate equal membership.
where all them Uyghurs at? oh yea in concentration camps.
The orange man tried to stop the wars. The civilized people stopped him by fortifying the election now the people who voted for him either bask in ignorance again or shout how could this happen..
So is this just saber rattling to piss off Ukraine, or part of a strategic push to sustain Crimea? Ukraine cut off the north Crimea canal, which is having substantial effects on agriculture in the Crimea, as well as other water users. If that part of the breadbasket dies off, a major part of the Crimean economy goes poof.
Are we perfect, no. I freely admit that, and I can do so and criticize without worrying about secret police or someone with a hammer showing up on my doorstep because they don't like what I said. Authoritarians cannot handle the truth, and their pathetic ego's, paranoia and insecurity will not allow anyone to tell the truth to power. That makes them likely to make mistakes, refuse to admit them, and drive the country into the toilet just so they can uphold an image. You seem to be Russian, sound familiar?
Just to be clear, I have a great deal of animosity towards government leadership. Ours is not perfect nor any other. I have no animosity towards Russian people or any other people. People are people, mostly good with some exceptions.
I've moved to a town called Nikolaevsk, with a heavy Russian population. Russian is the language I likely will have my children learn as their second language since it is available and accessible. I have great admiration for Marshall Zhukov to survive Hitler and Stalin both. Fedor Emelianenko is a credit to any country.
I have no respect for Bashar al Assad, Stalin, Hitler, Xi, King George III and very little for Putin. Take it for what it is, or not.
If you want to compare blood on the hands of Russia and the US, I will happily make that comparison any day. Yes, I back people trying to overthrow brutal dictators and am proud and unapologetic to say so. You call it "starting civil wars" which we did not. I call it backing people against authoritarians after their people already reached for freedom, which is exactly what it is.
NATO has little to do with this in any event. NATO is not an offensive block, it is a defense treaty that has only been called on once, the September 11 attacks. Sounds like exactly the type of defense treaty that would benefit Russia, a huge resource rich country with a shrinking population surrounded by more powerful resource greedy countries. Putin getting in bed with CCP China is like sleeping with a 20ft anaconda, just to protect his power and position.
Look at the countries that have non authoritarian governments that are aligned with the traditional western countries, even ones we have had conflict before. South Korea. Japan. Europe, even Germany who we fought a major war with in living memory. Look at their wealth and standard of living, their stability, their futures. Then compare them to Russia and other authoritarian countries supported by China like North Korea. Then ask yourself why are you supporting authoritarians?!? Given that track record, I fail to see why you would. I view that track record with national pride.
This kind of thinking is a result of decades of not using deterrence. It weakens the world and us, we should not wait till the enemy is in our doorsteps, this is what has brought the second WW.
There was a coup in Ukraine and this civil war started. Russia supports one of the sides and this is a good thing. Wish Russia accepted it and started to send weapons and personnel openly like US in Syria.
So you accepted to that you killed hundreds of thousands and started countless civil wars. And yes US supplied ISIS with TOW missiles and created ISIS. ISIS was created by US when it attacked Iraq. Hahaha still remember like Colin Powell lied about WMDs.
And the right answer is C. Nato countries (mostly US) are evil and not Russia and China.
As for Ukraine? I have three words for you on why I back sending arms to Ukraine. Little Green Men. This conflict is all about fear and power, Russia under Putin fomenting trouble to get what he wants from others. Anti tank missiles are not going to allow Ukraine to invade Russia, but the potential loss of several armor divisions will keep Russia on its side of the border. This deterrent will keep it from blowing up into something worse than it is already.
NATO is no threat to Russia, is not planning on invading Russia, honestly could not care less about Russia. No need to. Between demographics, kleptocracy and torqueing off neighbors that would otherwise be trade partners enriching Russia's people the Russian government is doing far worse damage than an external enemy would. Yet the fear, Putin's need to stay in power and the need for an external enemy, are causing a lot of damage to the lives of innocent people.
Like I mentioned, I would rather see Russia join NATO the way the USSR almost did. With no threat to Russia's western borders, everyone would sleep better. Trade would flow, Nord Stream 2 would be built with no opposition, Russia would be more like another country in Europe than seen as an adversary. Everyone would sleep better except someone who wants to hang onto power at all cost anyway. On the plus side though, he is getting old and if nothing else won't be a factor 10-20 years from now.
My government is not perfect, we also have blood on our hands too.
In Iraq, mostly through destabilization from the US. I did not support that war or support it now. It directly led to the formation of ISIS. These wars made me leave the military. We didn't create ISIS by giving them missiles, that happened in Jr.'s torture prisons.
As for Syria, anyone who uses chemical weapons against their own country has no business running the government, especially as dictator. We may back the rebels, but they are fighting for their own country. We may back them but are not fighting against Asad directly, so this one is not on us. Most of the fighting we have done there is against ISIS. The question is, why is Russia involved in the civil war of another country trying to overthrow a dictator, known to commit torture and atrocities against his own people, and keep him in power? Just because Putin lost UN support for Russia's position? Honestly we don't even have much of a dog in this hunt outside of backing people against dictator.
We also had little to do with Libya outside of air strikes to support people over a dictator. From Wiki.
According to a 2012 poll conducted by Gallup, 54% of Libyans approve of U.S. leadership, compared to only 22% and 19% respective approval for China and Russia's, and 75% of Libyans say they approved of NATO's military intervention in the civil war.
The U.S. began operations in Libya again on November 13, 2015 with permission from the GNA, as part of the military intervention against ISIL.
Answer a simple question. Who killed around 1 mil people in Iraq, Syria, Libya, Afghanistan since 1991 (collapse of Soviet Union)???
c) NATO countries
'Anything we can do to contain their actions, especially for a couple billion in anti tank missiles or other aid, is money well spent.'
This is how you created ISIS. Gave TOW missiles and other weapons to terrorist in Syria. Well done.
He says that Russians starved Ukrainians on purpose. This is a total lie. Millions of Ukrainian AND Russians died and this is bad I am not saying it never happened. But it happened because of mismanagement. Not even sure if it was Stalin's fault. I guess others in the government fed him lies. They just didn't want to look bad.
We already are dry and in the hole by 26 trillion dollars. I wish it was just the MIC but its the entitlements and political paybacks that have done the most damage.
Biden wins and Putin, China,, North Korea, Iran all start singing and dancing to Kool & the Gang's song Celebration.
Where is the lie? Stalin was a monster and millions of people died under his regime. This is not some "alt history". It is something the Communist tried to cover up but could not hide it as the death toll was so incredibly high. Stalin was evil, Communism/Socialism is evil, and it is best to stop trying to hide unpleasant history so that people can actually learn from it.
I live in a nation full of useful idiots (to coin Lenin's term) who think Socialism is all utopia and unicorns because they are not being taught the true history of Socialism and it's consequences.
Russia senses a weakened Anerica and a feeble president.
Taiwan needs to watch out.
It seems simple to me really. Putin wants Ukraine back in Russia's sphere of influence the way they used to be. That is why Russia is backing the separatists, to keep them from joining NATO and having a shield from further integration. I can kind of see Putin's point, since NATO has been Russia's adversary for decades and Ukraine is right on Russia's border. It's a strategic western border tripwire.
I just wish Russia had instead chosen to join NATO, which seems to have been a far simpler, and less costly in lives and treasure, path to take. China is actually a far greater threat to Russia long term than NATO ever will be. Russia did peel off those provinces from China during their "100 years of shame" after all. Russia has a shrinking population, minimal manufacturing capability and vast resources, not insignificant prizes for an expansive and confident wanna be superpower. Best case Russia has now is Chinese client state.
We have a vested interest in this for one reason. China and Russia under Putin are forming closer bonds, with the US and NATO as their perceived adversaries. Anything we can do to contain their actions, especially for a couple billion in anti tank missiles or other aid, is money well spent. It beats stopping them after it gets rolling.
If Putin perceives weakness from the US and NATO and believes he can take all of Ukraine, leaving other countries in the region open to assault and intimidation, he will act. He's nothing if not strategic and decisive.
Ukrainians starved other ukranians. Lots of Russians died at the same time too so stop lying.
They didn't want to get involved and limit Hitler and it turned out badly and he didn't stop after one country he wanted another even bigger one, they don't stop. So it is better to limit aggression before the country get too strong and does too much damage.
It would be bad for business if Russians get to strong, bad for Europe, bad for USA. Ukrainians have right to be independent, free from Russian influence.
If Russia gets too strong and starts invading Europe one country after another it would be much more expensive than to limit them now. And Europeans wouldn't buy so much from US and vice versa so much more would be lost on trade related problems and so on. So it is much better to help each other in the long run.
And Soviets, partly Russians murdered millions of Ukrainians during hodomnor.
So Nato alliance helps each other so we can have (stable?) democracies and less wars, business and trade can be profitable for all sides,… And if you read books such as "Black book of communism." you would understand why you should be afraid of Russia.
LNG terminals in Ukraine ??? What are you talking about ?
Exactly. All US airfields in Europe will be destroyed with Kalibr, Iskander missiles.
Are you talking about CIA torturers who tortured people in secret camps ?
it's not US business, this kind of politics, sticking nose into other countries business will only accelerate US fall due to expenses etc. Only by focusing more on its own problems US has chances to not becoming 3rd world country soon (by XXI century standards)
Ukraine population is not 43m, more like 37m
"There are 37.3 million people living in Ukraine," Dmytro Dubilet, the minister of the Cabinet of Ministers, said at a briefing in Kyiv on January 23
Putinhead wants control any potential LNG terminals in order to restrict the import to Europe.
Agreed. This is exactly the kind of foreign entanglement we should avoid.
It's also the kind of thing that led to the outbreak of WWI. Everyone had treaties with each other, so the whole thing went off like a chain reaction.
I'm nearly 50 years old and I still can't understand what's the issue that still prevents us from putting extremely violent humans like torturers to sleep.
We have excellent medications that don't let them feel any pain or fear in the process. We have psychologists to acompany them. We could even let them listen to their favourite songs and smell rose fragrance in their last minutes.
Can you think of a better way to advance human civilization? A better way to show and nurture human decency? A better way to spread the message of love by deeds?
Because global progress is America's progress.
Why? Explain to me, as a fellow American, why I should even care about this.
There is such a thing called deterrence. Precision bombing and aerial surveillance has made leaps and bounds since the Vietnam war.
The US MIC needs more taxpayer money. This is another fantastic opportunity to bleed Americans dry.
Like you established air presence above Vietnam ? Ask John McCain how it went. Wish he was still alive. I bet he was crying like a little girl for 5 years in Vietnamese camps.
The footage in the last day or so of train and road convoys of large numbers of tanks, artillery and trucks don’t strike me as being to “secure the border”. Recent statement about any escalation leading to the “destruction” of the Ukraine don’t seem like warnings but more like threats. I think Putin wants an even larger chunk of the Ukraine, if not the whole.
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