The Kremlin admits that the Russian army suffered heavy losses and the fighting in the Donbas region will continue
Russia has invaded Ukraine since February 24, and the Russian army has not been able to capture Kyiv. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov admitted in a recent interview with the British “Sky News” (Sky News), “Our army has Significant losses, this is a huge tragedy for us.”
He said that the military did its best to end the military operation, hoping to achieve its goals in the foreseeable future, or through negotiations between Russia and Ukraine. But he added that fighting in the Udong Donbas region would continue.
Peskov insisted that this was not a war, but a “special military operation” necessary because Ukraine became an “anti-Russian center” after Russia annexed Crimea in 2014.
The Russian Ministry of Defense released statistics on March 25 that since the launch of the so-called “special military operation, 1,351 Russian soldiers have been killed and 3,825 people have been injured. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said two days later that the number of Russian soldiers died. Probably at least 10,000. The United Nations (UN) says more than 1,000 civilians have been confirmed dead in the fighting, but the actual number could be much higher.
Analysis: Beijing ‘riding the wall’ goes bankrupt, China plunges into unprecedented isolation
On February 4, before Russia launched the war against Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin went to Beijing to attend the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics, and issued a joint statement with Xi Jinping, the general secretary of the Communist Party of China, saying that “the friendship between the two countries has no end and cooperation is not restricted.” Through this joint statement, it is rare to jointly oppose the eastward expansion of NATO with Russia.
After Russia invaded Ukraine seven weeks ago, it was quickly met with global condemnation. Countries including the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Japan, South Korea and NATO members have imposed tough sanctions on Moscow. But China refuses to condemn the war and condemns international sanctions against Russia.
China abstained last month when the United Nations voted on two non-binding resolutions to pressure Russia’s ongoing war in Ukraine and the humanitarian disaster it caused.
The United States has also repeatedly warned Beijing of “consequences” if it aids Moscow.
Earlier this month, the international community was shocked when the massacre in the town of Butcha, on the outskirts of the Ukrainian capital Kyiv, came to light. On Thursday (April 7), the United Nations General Assembly voted to suspend Russia’s membership in the Human Rights Council, and the CCP chose to side with Russia this time and voted against it.
The French Guangguang recently published an article titled “The Bucha Massacre Did Not Shock China“, saying that Beijing, one of the five permanent members of the United Nations and the world‘s second largest economy, has longed to become a “responsible power” for many years, and it is very concerned about the Russian military in Ukraine. The massacre of civilians in Butcha, on the outskirts of Kyiv, has so far remained silent, without expressing the slightest sympathy for the tragic death of civilians, let alone condemning the butcher, or even a neutral expression of “shock” at the massacre.
The article said that when a horrific massacre was described as a performance, it was staged, and a dignified country pretended to turn a blind eye to such a dehumanizing massacre. Internet celebrities wanted to cover it up, and it was the image of China that collapsed.
The Voice of America published an article “Russian military atrocities detonated international condemnation, Beijing’s ‘neutrality’ is more difficult to justify?”, which quoted Wei Bizhou, a senior American media person, commenting that the Chinese media did not mention the Russian-made Butcha massacre, which shows that Beijing The government’s lack of moral courage raises concerns about the future of the nation.
Wang Yuangang, a professor of politics at Western Michigan University, believes that Beijing wants to please both sides, but the result is not people inside or outside. Not long ago, Beijing, through Qin Gang, the Chinese ambassador to the United States, drew a bottom line on the “unlimited” Sino-Russian relationship, that is, the recognized international law and norms of international relations. And this massacre by the Russian army has forced Beijing into an embarrassing situation that cannot be justified.
At present, the West has launched a new round of tougher sanctions. Wang Yuangang said, “If China (the CCP) continues to maintain its two-handed strategy, this vague, this squid strategy … it will be difficult to get this kind of resonance with other countries in the world.”
Chinese current affairs commentator Wei Xin told Free Asia that Beijing has always had an attitude of “riding the wall” towards the Russian-Ukrainian war, and the atrocities of the war in Bucha have made this attitude bankrupt.
“The nature of this war has begun to change. For Beijing, the ‘peace movement’ is facing bankruptcy. This is also the bankruptcy of Xi Jinping’s ambiguous attitude towards the Russian-Ukrainian war, leaving China in unprecedented isolation,” said Wiesin. Let the international community think that China (the CCP) is in the same camp as the war criminal Putin.”
Facing severe challenges, NATO has included the CCP in its strategic considerations for the first time
On April 7, Jens Stoltenberg told the media after the enlarged meeting of NATO foreign ministers: “We have seen that China is reluctant to condemn Russian aggression, and Beijing joins Moscow in questioning the choice of countries. The right to its own path.” He believes that this poses a “serious challenge” to the entire North Atlantic alliance.
The meeting discussed how NATO is responding to new security realities, including challenges to the rules-based international order posed by Russia and China.
In addition to the 30 NATO member states, the foreign ministers’ meeting included the foreign ministers of NATO’s Asia-Pacific partners Australia, Japan, South Korea and New Zealand. Stoltenberg said the presence of Asia-Pacific partners at the meeting was important “because of the global implications of this crisis”.
NATO will seek to strengthen partnerships with allies in the Asia-Pacific region in multiple areas, including cyber, new technologies and combating disinformation. Stoltenberg said that, in turn, would help NATO and its allies work more closely together on maritime security, climate change and resilience, saying “global challenges require global solutions”.
Stoltenberg said NATO’s 30 members will announce their new “strategic concept” after the Madrid summit in June, and include China as a strategic consideration, “for the first time we have to take into account China‘s growing influence, and how its mandatory policies affect our security,” he added.
NATO agrees to supply Ukraine with new heavy weapons
Also participating in the NATO meeting are Finland and Sweden, which are actively seeking to join NATO, as well as Georgia and Ukraine, which is fighting a Russian invasion.
NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg said that NATO remains primarily focused on ending the war in Ukraine, providing more aid not only to Kyiv but also to other countries threatened by Russian aggression, such as Georgia.
Ukrainian officials and Western intelligence have pointed out that after failing to capture Kyiv, the Russian army has basically withdrawn from the territory north of Ukraine, but is still regrouping and arming, preparing to advance to the eastern Donbas region. Before the NATO commitment, Ukraine’s foreign minister had been urging Western countries to speed up arms supplies before help came too late and killed many.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kuleba (Dmytro Kuleba) said at the NATO foreign ministers meeting that countries are required to provide aircraft, missiles, armored vehicles and heavy air defense systems. “I’m here today to discuss the three most important things. Weapons, weapons, weapons,” Kuleba said in a tweet after the meeting.
Now NATO has agreed to provide Ukraine with more new heavy weapons.
British Foreign Minister Liz Truss told reporters after the meeting that NATO members would supply more weapons. “Countries support the provision of new and heavier equipment to Ukraine so that they can respond to new threats from Russia,” she said. “We agreed to help the Ukrainian military transition from Soviet-era equipment to NATO standards on a bilateral basis. equipment.”
U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Washington was considering sending a “new system” to Ukraine. “We will overcome all obstacles to get Ukrainians to get the equipment they need,” Blinken said. “We are now taking a comprehensive look at not only the equipment we have provided … whether there are other systems that can work.”
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said the allies had agreed to “further strengthen” their help to Ukraine immediately and provide “medium to long-term” support. “Today’s meeting sent a clear message that allies should do more and be prepared to do more and provide more equipment. They recognize the urgency,” he said.
“The Russian invasion has global, long-term consequences. What’s happening in Ukraine is being watched closely around the world,” Stoltenberg said.