Screen grab, from video at source
April 4, 2014
Translated from French by Tom Winter
(This article is three separate but linked parts. For clarity, I added the headings.)
Taking advantage of a relative calm on the Donbass front, Praviy Sektor and the entire neobanderist and Ukrainian neonazi movement are raising the pressure on the Poroshenko regime. In “pro-european” Ukraine, freedom of information does not exist and freedom of thought is limited to whatever is congruent. Kievan potentate Poroshenko maintains that he wants to counter Russian propaganda, and so forbids every form of media that contests the policies in force since Maidan coup, more than a year ago. One must hide the framework of the pro-Western putschists; one must lie to the people and to the opinions of the members of the EU. But, as they say, facts are stubborn things. While waiting on the reprise of combat on a large scale, the war of information is on full swing and the internal struggles at the core of Kievan power continue, and there’s no guarantee that the field of the master of Kiev is immune.
From the field
Most attacks of the Kiev forces reported in the last 48 hours have been set upon republican positions at and near the Donetsk airport, near Gorlovka, and on Shirokino. There have been periodic skirmishes at the edge of Krymskoe, northwest of Lugansk, and towards Stanitsa Luganskaya, also mortar fire from the lines held by Kiev. The situation on the “Bahmutka Track” “has gotten serious the last 24 hours, after several new provocations from the Ukrainian side resulting in one ruined tank, two armored cars destroyed, and 15 soldiers killed or wounded on the Ukrainian side; on the FAN side, they report just four wounded. This morning still, near Krymskoe, a confrontation took place, accompanied by salvoes of artillery.
To the northwest of Gorlovka, the town of Maiorsk is still controlled by the army of Novorossiya, but movement of Ukrainian T64BV tanks have been reported ever since March 31; apparently the Ukrainian forces are repositioning their heavy equipment intending an attack.
After a relative calm of several days, several large caliber salvoes came in around 20h10 in the Petrovsky quarter, an engagement took place.
The most worrisome sector still remains the town of Shirokino, to the east of Mariupol, where the elements of the neonazi unit Azov hold entrenched positions some 200 m to the west of the tiny coastal settlement. This morning, a bit after 6h00, local time, a skirmish involving 82 mm mortars, RPG, and small arms fire, later, 120mm mortars on the Ukrainian positions on the Shirokino periphery, to the southwest.
The recalcitrant Paras
The dealings between the kievan power and the extremist paramilitaries of Praviy Sektor, aimed at getting them recognized as a “shock brigade are dragging on: the “Führer” of the right sector, Dmitry Yarosh, has no taste for it, and he has been putting on more pressure in recent days.
As the Kiev government seeks anyway to integrate the battalions of Praviy Sektor, and neobanderists into the official forces of the country, the Ukrainian operations command has given them until March 27: Units not incorporated in the National Guard (essential the DUK companies and the OUN Battalion) are to leave the front lines. However, neither DUK nor OUN has budged. Spokesman for Praviy Sektor, Artyom Skoropadsky, affirms that they have no intention of obeying the order from Kiev. “They’re removing our right to the war” (sic), declared Artyom Lutsak, the head of DUK company 8. “Neutralizing forces on your own side — that’s treason.”
As promised by the Kiev presidency, Skoropadsky has insisted on the fact that Praviy Sektor does not have to be dissolved among the main forces of Kiev, but must get rid of its own independent structure as the “shock troops.”
“They’re not going to take any measures against us. What could they do? The army can’t fight against Right Sector, that would be absurd. Right Sector has enormous power” ! — a “power” doubtless guaranteed by very special “advisers” from overseas. It’s in this sense that the “Führer” of Praviy Sektor, Dmitro Yarosh, says that he is ready to obey the military control of Ukraine, and not otherwise.
For all that, it would seem that the Ukrainian command has no need of supplementary paramilitary units, especially of a brigade of irregulars that would benefit from the resources of the regular army. Oleg Sushinsky, spokesman for “Sector M” (Mariupol, regular army) figured, on March 26, that “there are already plenty of government battalions serving at Mariupol” and that the paramilitaries of Right Sector are not needed. “They want to fight, But they can’t do it their way. On the one hand, there are civilians; on the other, there are soldiers. If they consider themselves professionals, let them join up officially.”
Praviy Sektor claims to have 15 battalions of reserves deployed throughout Ukraine, according to the rantings of Yarosh. In fact, though, the “battalions” in question are but slim companies, that is, demi-companies, in addition to the OUN battalion, which doesn’t amount to more than 120 paramilitaries — not even a company according to the norms of NATO.
To this, one must add hundreds of Right Sector activists already integrated in the recognized formations of the National Guard and in the Army. Summing up, grand maximum, there would be less than 3,000 paras loosely or closely affiliated with Right Sector, and not the 10,000 trumpeted by Yarosh and his minions.
If the forces of Kiev cannot master Yarosh and his thugs, then how would they be able to get the better of the rebels of the Donbass?