Cameron sends troops to Ukraine

by our European Affairs correspondent

Anglo-American imperialism stepped up its open support for the Kiev junta this week following the announcement that 75 British military personnel will be sent to Ukraine to provide “advice and training” to beef up the puppet government army. The Americans are sending a battalion to train the Ukrainian army but neither Washington nor London is talking yet about direct involvement against the anti-fascist Novorossiyan militias in the east of the country.

The British move, which was predictably welcomed by Labour, specifically rules out combat troops but a number of MPs warned about the dangers of mission creep. Sir Edward Leigh, a maverick Tory MP who is calling for a rapprochement with Russia, warned: “The trouble with sending advisers, as the Americans found in Vietnam, and many other nations have found since, [is that] mission creep results in eventually combat troops being sent.”

Meanwhile puppet Ukrainian President Peter Poroshenko has been to Abu Dhabi for the IDEX-2015 Arms Expo and has returned from the international defence exhibition with what he claims is a bagload of weapons deals with the United Arab Emirates. The Emirates do make small arms and they have a stake in the Serbian defence industry. But they are major importers of weapons from the United States and other western countries and they would willingly act as a conduit for the imperialists if it served the interests of their venal royal family. Whether the Ukrainians can pay for them is another matter given that the Kiev regime is virtually bankrupt.

In eastern Ukraine prisoner- of-war exchanges have begun and the Kiev regime and the Novorossiyans have both pledged to observe the new Minsk agreement, which calls for a full-scale withdrawal of heavy weapons from the ceasefire lines. On the front-line the guns have fallen silent. But few Novorossiyans believe the truce will last.

Ukrainian anti-fascists still honour Soviet Red Army Day and on 23rd February the independent people’s republics of Novorossiya recalled the sacrifice of the Red Army during the Second World War and celebrated the historic victory of the anti-fascist people’s militias over the USbacked Ukrainian army and the “Naziguard” militias in Debaltsevo in February.

Thousands poured into Donetsk city’s central square under the statue of Lenin to mark their second decisive military victory over Ukraine’s vastly larger, better- equipped forces in less than a year. At the same time, Donetsk People’s Republic Prime Minister Alexander Zakharchenko cautioned that the Kiev junta of oligarchs, reactionary politicians and fascists was martialling for a new attack, perhaps as soon as late March.

Truce or no truce the imperialist hate campaign against Russia and the anti-fascist resistance continues unabated. Last week the London-based “Ukraine Solidarity Campaign” claimed that unions had been banned in Lugansk — a claim dismissed by the Novorossiyans who point out that the very document purporting to be an official document of the Lugansk People’s Republic (LPR) was a fake. The forgery referred to laws never adopted in the LPR and it comes from the so-called Zahyst Pratsi union which consists of five or six people in Kiev. A similar forgery, claiming the LPR had passed a law “prohibiting homosexuality” went the rounds until it too was exposed as a fake based on nothing.

And the partisans are denying any involvement in the bomb attack on a Ukrainian nationalist parade in Kharkov last week that killed two people and wounded 15 others — many of them members of the Kiev regime police. The Ukrainians say four suspects have been arrested and the Kiev media are again claiming that the Russians or their supporters in Novorossiya were responsible. But it seems most unlikely that the Russian government, which invested so much effort at Minsk to freeze the conflict, would then encourage pro-Russian guerrillas to almost immediately undermine it. On the other hand this attack is clearly beneficial to the Ukrainian fascists who want to intensify the conflict and sabotage the Minsk agreements.