“Rammstein-3”: good, but not enough

A meeting of the Contact Group on Defense of Ukraine (Ramstein-3) was held in Brussels. – Ed.), which was attended by representatives of the defense departments of about 50 countries.

The participants of the meeting decided to provide Ukraine with additional military assistance in the near and medium term to help it ensure victory in this war.

Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksiy Reznikov spoke in more detail about the results of the third meeting.

“More weapons will be provided by the United States (155-mm cannons, HIMARS, Harpoons, etc. Slovakia will provide helicopters, artillery – Canada, Poland and the Netherlands, multiple launch rocket systems – Germany. And something else. Thank you all. The Ukrainian army is ready to use these new devices are against the forces of evil,” said the head of the Ukrainian defense department. Alexei Reznikov also said that Georgia, Moldova and Ecuador had joined Ramstein.

Heavy equipment from the allies – went

< p>Slovakia has decided to transfer combat helicopters to Ukraine, and Canada, Poland and the Netherlands – new artillery units, Pentagon chief Lloyd Austin announced this after a meeting in the Ramstein format in Brussels.

“I would like to thank Slovakia , which announced a significant donation of Mi-series helicopters and badly needed rocket munitions,” he said.

“We also discussed important new artillery donations from many countries, including Canada, Poland and the Netherlands. These are key investments and Ukraine's long-range fire capabilities and will be critical to Ukraine's efforts to repel Russia's offensive in the Donbas,” Austin said.

The head of the Pentagon confirmed that Germany had decided to transfer three multiple rocket launchers with guided munitions to Ukraine. German Defense Minister Christina Lambrecht confirmed the transfer of three Mars II multiple rocket launchers to Kyiv. In total, ten MLRS units have already been promised to Ukraine: four HIMARS from the United States, three M270s from the UK and three MARS II from Germany. Berlin also intends to deliver Panzerhaubitze 2000 howitzers to Ukraine.

U.S. military assistance to Ukraine, according to Lloyd Austin, includes additional artillery, coastal defense armaments, ammunition for artillery and advanced missile systems.

Thus, in particular, the United States will hand over to Ukraine:

  • 18 155mm howitzers;
  • 36,000 155mm rounds;
  • 18 tactical vehicles to tow 155mm howitzers;
  • additional ammunition for Himars high-mobility artillery missile systems;
  • 4 tactical recovery vehicles, spare parts and other equipment.

Also, the Americans will give Ukraine two coastal defense systems with Harpoon missiles, thousands of secure radios, thousands of night vision devices, thermal imaging sights and other optics, etc.

And Reuters published information about the possible sale of four MQ-1C Gray drones to Ukraine Eagle with appropriate ammunition – AGM-114 Hellfire missiles. If, nevertheless, a decision is made to supply Gray Eagles drones to Ukraine, this will mean a new chapter in the supply of weapons to Ukraine and may open the door to sending even more sophisticated systems to Kyiv.

The value of the Gray Eagle, also known as the Reaper, is that the drone can fly for up to 30 hours, collect massive amounts of surveillance data, and fire accurate Hellfire missiles. The system is reusable, unlike the smaller Switchblade munitions that have already been sent to the front lines.

Countries pledge to support Ukraine further

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky announced “really good news” following the meeting of defense ministers in the “Ramstein format”. “We expect an increase in support. We have a clear signal that Ukraine's defense support will be permanent,” Zelensky said

However, journalists and experts following the results of Ramstein-3 analyze that all the weapons transferred to Kyiv much less than the weapons available to the Russian troops.

“The numbers are in favor of the Russians,” Mark Milley, chairman of the US Joint Chiefs of Staff, confirmed this conclusion. He mentioned estimates of the ratio between Ukrainian and Russian artillery: 5 to 1, 10 to 1 and even 20 to 1. But the general refused to give the true data, since they are classified.

But, according to Deutsche Welle, the chairman of the committee of chiefs of staff said that at the Ramstein-3 meeting, Ukraine was promised additional artillery units. “We are talking, probably, about 300-400 artillery pieces, and this is barreled, not rocket artillery, which in total will be provided to Ukrainians. In addition to this, long-range rocket artillery will be supplied. Himars is just the beginning,” Milli promised , answering a question from DW.

And US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, in turn, promised that countries participating in meetings in the “Ramstein format” would continue to provide weapons to Ukraine “for as long as necessary” .

Expert Opinion

Oleg Zhdanov, international security expert:

– The weapons that have been transferred to us and will continue to be transferred are in the hundreds of units. Of course, what we want and what we are given – there is a difference. But the important thing is that these heavy weapons are constantly supplied. There is no breakthrough, there is not the volume that we want, but our Western allies still supply us with heavy weapons. We have already received 12 artillery battalions, consisting of 260 artillery systems. The fact that we need a thousand howitzers is a very optimistic expectation. We also received 300 infantry fighting vehicles, 1,600 air defense systems and 60,000 missiles for them, 12,000 anti-tank systems (Javelin and Stinger). This is a positive trend, but it is very slow. We need to build up weapons faster for the offensive.

Western media

The New York Times:

“G Zelenskiy and his aides have recently stepped up public pressure on the West to supply more modern weapons, portraying Ukraine as the defender of the international liberal democratic order and emphasizing that only weapons can stop Russia's advance in the country's east.

The US aid package for Ukraine includes lots of long-range artillery, anti-ship missile launchers, lots of howitzer ammunition, and a sophisticated US missile system that Ukrainians are currently being trained to operate. In total, since the Russian invasion on February 24, the United States has provided about $5.6 billion to Ukraine for security purposes.”

The Hill:

“Ukraine is currently struggling to keep Russia from claiming its easternmost region and industrial center known as the Donbass and is ramping up its requests for more Western aid with heavy weapons.

The Biden administration on Wednesday announced a new $1 billion aid package to Ukraine that will include artillery, coastal defense armaments and ammunition to support its armed forces in its nearly four-month war with the Kremlin.

Speaking earlier to Western officials, Austin urged the countries not to lose steam in supporting Ukraine as it experiences a “battlefield turning point.”

ABC:

“The West must increase arms supplies to Ukraine and prove its commitment to helping the armed forces on a 1,000-kilometer frontline in a brutal war of attrition with Russia.

Opening a meeting in Brussels on support for Ukraine, US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin called for more The 45 participating countries demonstrate “our unwavering determination to provide Ukraine with the capabilities it urgently needs to defend itself.”

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