Kiev must create weapons to attack Russia ‘in depth’, says Ukrainian expert

epa04188687 Ukrainian soldiers stay near of a checkpoint seized by them not far of Slaviansk, Ukraine, 02 May 2014. At least three people were killed and several were injured in clashes between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian separatists in the eastern city of Sloviansk early on 02 May. The Ukraininan Defence Ministry said that two crew members were killed and an unspecified number of soldiers were injured after separatists shot down two Mi-24 assault helicopters with surface-to-air missiles. A third, Mi-8 transport helicopter, was hit by bullets but escaped unharmed, the ministry said. 'Putin has called such an operation a criminal action. Sadly the latest developments fully support that,' says Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman, and has practically destroyed the last hope for a diplomatic solution to the crisis. EPA/ROMAN PILIPEY
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KIEV, Ukraine – The situation in the Black and Azov Seas develops extremely unfavorably for Ukraine and therefore Kiev needs to try to shift the balance of forces in its favor by devising weapons capable of “attacking in depth the territory of Russia.”

This opinion was expressed by the deputy director of the Center for Army Studies, Conversion and Disarmament, Mikhail Samus, in an article published in the journal Apostrof.

Samus acknowledged that Russia completely dominates the Black and Azov seas. At the same time, neither NATO nor Ukraine can prevent it. In addition, the reaction of Western countries to the November incident in the Kerch Strait shows that the West is not ready to “raise the stakes” and seeks to “freeze the conflict,” he said.

“Exit to Ukraine is obvious: the development of navy and missile capabilities, anti-aircraft and anti-missile capabilities of the Ukrainian army. That is the only possibility,” he said.

At the same time, in his view, there is no longer any illusion that the West will help Ukraine in any international conflict.

In his view, “Ukraine needs to strengthen its navy, that is, change the balance of forces in the Black Sea, to help NATO begin to help Romania develop its naval forces,” Samus said.

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Kiev also has to develop anti-missile and anti-aircraft defense systems to “dissuade Russia from using its powerful missile capabilities against Ukraine,” the expert believes.

“And, at the same time, [it should] develop its own containment weapon – the Neptun missile, which can attack the Russian territory in depth,” he concluded.

On 25 November, three Ukrainian navy ships violated Russia’s borders. They carried out dangerous maneuvers for several hours without meeting the demands of the Russian authorities. As a result, the ships were detained and the seamen arrested.

Russian President Vladimir Putin described the incident in the Kerch Strait as provocation encouraged by Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko. In particular, the Russian leader indicated that everything was arranged to introduce martial law in Ukraine and thus postpone the presidential elections.

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