Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense reported that during the week of August 16-22, no Ukrainian soldiers were killed and six Ukrainian soldiers were wounded in action. In the last week, Russian-terrorist forces opened fire on Ukrainian positions on the Luhansk and Donetsk sectors of the front 82 times in total.
2. Prime Minister of Israel meets with Ukraine’s President
The Prime Minister of Israel Benjamin Netanyahu was on an official visit to Ukraine, August 18-20. He met with Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. The Office of the President of Ukraine reported, “Ukraine will take into account Israel’s experience in the areas of security and defense. It was stated by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy following negotiations with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
‘As a state, we have a lot to learn from Israel, especially in the issues of security and defense. And we will definitely do that,’ Volodymyr Zelenskyy stressed.
According to the President, the issues of war and security were the priority of the agenda of his talks with Benjamin Netanyahu, as Israel is well aware of those issues.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy also thanked the Israeli partners for their continued support of Ukraine’s territorial integrity and for an unwavering stand on the war in the east of our country and the annexation of Crimea.”
3. Canada’s Prime Minister speaks with Ukraine’s President
The Office of the President of Ukraine reported on August 22, “President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy had a phone conversation with Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau.
The Head of State thanked for Canada’s consistent position on the impossibility of Russia’s return to the G7 in light of the ongoing aggression in Donbas and occupation of Crimea. The President believes that in a situation where Ukrainians are still being killed, it is necessary not to return Russia to the G7, but to force it to fulfill its obligations.
Volodymyr Zelenskyy thanked Justin Trudeau for his willingness to adhere to the same principled position regarding the inadmissibility of the Russian Federation’s return to the G7, which he demonstrated during last year’s G7 summit in Canada.
The President of Ukraine and the Prime Minister of Canada have agreed to continue the discussion of the issue of counteracting Russia’s aggressive policy and protecting Ukraine’s interests after the G7 summit in France.”
4. Ukrainian Congress Committee of America responds to President Trump: Russia does not belong in the G7
The Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA) stated on August 21, “In responding to a question raised by the media, President Donald Trump gave the wrong answer when asked if Russia should be reinstated into the group of the world’s largest advanced economies, the G7.
Speaking in the Oval Office while seated alongside President Klaus Iohannis of Romania, President Trump announced that ‘it’s much more appropriate to have Russia in [the G7] …. I could certainly see it being the G8 again. And if somebody would make that motion, I would certainly be disposed to think about it very favorably.’
The UCCA, the representative organization for over 1.5 million Americans of Ukrainian descent, once again strongly denounces the suggestion that Russia be allowed back into the G7. UCCA denounced similar proposals made by President Trump in 2018, which were met with rejection by the leaders of Germany, Canada, the United Kingdom, and France at the 2018 G7 summit, as well as Senators John McCain, Ben Sasse, and Chuck Schumer among other leaders in Congress.
In proposing this change in United States policy, President Trump either disregarded, or was unaware that in 2014, the G7 canceled their planned summit in the Russian city of Sochi, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula – the first forced annexation Europe had seen since the Second World War. Along with canceling the planned summit, the G7 countries issued the Hague Declaration, which unequivocally tied Russia’s expulsion from the G7 to its actions in Ukraine: ‘We condemn the illegal referendum held in Crimea in violation of Ukraine’s constitution. We also strongly condemn Russia’s illegal attempt to annex Crimea in contravention of international law and specific international obligations. We do not recognize either…Today, we reaffirm that Russia’s actions will have significant consequences.’
Since that declaration, Russia has only increased their transgressions, while continuing to undermine democracy in Europe. ‘To be clear, it would not be ‘more appropriate to have Russia in’ the G7,’ stated UCCA President Andriy Futey. ‘Until the Russian Federation ceases its actions in Ukraine, and removes itself from all internationally recognized Ukrainian territory, Russia must remain suspended from membership in the group of the world’s largest advanced economies, as its actions in Ukraine contravene the principles and values on which the G7 operate,’ Futey concluded.
The United States, as the bastion of democracy in the free world, and the President, as its Executive, must take the lead in promoting international norms, defending basic human rights and freedoms, and charting a course of geopolitical stability. The President could start by visiting Ukraine in the coming months and see first-hand why Russia does not belong in the G7.”
5. Investigators offer new proof of Russian involvement in 2014 Illovaisk massacre
To view the website, please click on image above
The Kyiv Post reported on August 19, “An independent investigative group, Forensic Architecture, based in London came up with the new evidence of Russian military forces participating in the Battle of Ilovaisk. The evidence is pulled together as a digital platform, published on Aug. 19.
The group of architects, software engineers, and investigative journalists presented a digital map which reconstructs the events of the Battle of Ilovaisk. The evidence Forensic Architecture collected had been presented before the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France.
The Battle of Ilovaisk is a watershed event that took place in August-September of 2014. It was one of the fiercest battles in Russia’s war against Ukraine and turned into a massacre by Russians of Ukrainians who had been promised safety if they surrendered. To this day, Russia denies its involvement in the battle.
The platform demonstrates Russian military presence in eastern Ukraine in August-September 2014 in the most comprehensive way ever presented before. It sequences different events of the Battle and shows the connections between them. […]
The evidence pieced together by Forensic Architecture was used in the case which is heard by ECHR. The lawyers presented the digital platform before the court in February 2019 when addressing their major arguments to defend the rights of twenty-five Ukrainian soldiers captured by Russian militaries during the Battle of Ilovaisk.”
The evidence is available in digital platform here
6. Hoffman and Soames: Stop Putin now, as Churchill would warn, or West will face the consequences
Sir Nicholas Soames, Member of UK Parliament and Daniel Hoffman wrote for Fox News, “August 23 marks the 80th anniversary of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact, the infamous neutrality treaty that secretly divided Poland, the Baltic States, and Romania between Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. The 1939 treaty offers lessons for any nation engaging with Russia today, especially those which were once part of the former USSR.
Russian President Vladimir Putin, who served in the KGB and was director of the Russian Security Police, has defended Stalin’s decision to sign the pact. For Putin, like Stalin, regime security is paramount, even if it means fracturing Europe, compromising international institutions, and an alliance with the devil. […]
Putin also seeks to destabilize the U.S. internally, drive a wedge between the U.S. and its NATO allies, and enhance control over Russia’s regional sphere of influence, most especially Ukraine. The Kremlin is behaving more like an aggressive and dangerous rogue state than a member of the community of nations.
Putin is bent on reviving the ethos of the Soviet evil empire. Just as containment and deterrence effectively countered the Soviet Union during the Cold War, they are similarly applicable today against Putin, the KGB operative in the Kremlin.
Sir Winston Churchill, who united his country and the West in common cause against dictators, would undoubtedly have been ringing alarm bells in Trafalgar Square over Russia’s multifaceted aggression, especially against Ukraine.
Never hesitant to tell the unpopular truth, it was Churchill who presciently and forcefully argued against the appeasement of Nazi Germany. Speaking of the neutral nations that refused to join the fight against Hitler, Churchill said, ‘Each one hopes that if he feeds the crocodile enough, the crocodile will eat him last. All of them hope that the storm will pass before their time comes to be devoured. But … the storm will not pass. It will rage and it will roar, every more loudly, ever more widely.’
For Putin, democracy is an existential threat, especially in the former Soviet Union, whose collapse Putin once called the ‘greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the 20th century.’ Nothing threatens Putin’s regime security more than Ukraine, a democratic neighbor with a bright economic future and sizeable Russian-speaking population. Worse for Putin, Ukraine is an aspiring member of the EU, with which it signed a free trade agreement in 2016, and NATO, which is assisting Ukraine with its cyber defense. […]
Long-term, his objective is the destruction of Ukraine as a state. Putin doesn’t want a successful democracy next door serving as a beacon of hope and inspiration for his own domestic opponents who are denied basic civil liberties, including freedom of expression and assembly. […]
The West is running out of time to draw and enforce a red line, with the intelligence, military, diplomatic, and economic measures that would enable Ukraine to deter Russian aggression.
The U.S. and its allies should mount a full-court press in the public square, including inside Russia, to expose Putin’s nefarious Ukraine policy, which so negatively impacts the economies of Russia and the region. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s planned White House visit is a propitious opportunity for the U.S. and Ukraine to discuss bilateral cooperation at the highest level.
Churchill would have recognized Ukraine as being on the front lines against Russian espionage and military, cyber and economic attacks. If the U.S. fails to follow his example, and does not lead a coalition against the Russian crocodile now, we will only have ourselves to blame when Putin comes for us next.”