We are giving Ukraine more military aid than Britain, says Germany

Olaf Scholz claims that Berlin has provided more support than Westminster, adding that only the US has done more

and BRUSSELS CORRESPONDENT 7 June 2022 •

Olaf Scholz

The remarks by Olaf Scholz were an apparent snub of Britain’s support for Ukraine CREDIT: Petras Malukas/AFP via Getty Images

Germany’s chancellor appeared to claim he was doing more to support Ukraine than Britain on Tuesday as he suggested that only the United States had sent more military aid to Kyiv than he had.

Speaking at a press conference alongside the leaders of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, Olaf Scholz said he was providing more support to Ukraine than “almost anyone else,” as the Baltic leaders criticised his insistence that phone calls with Vladimir Putin will help to resolve the war.

“Germany is one of the main supporters of Ukraine militarily and probably only the United States provides greater support than us,” Mr Scholz also said, pointing out that Berlin was sending its most advanced Howitzer systems and training Ukrainians to use them.

A recent study by the Kiel Institute for the World Economy found that Poland and the UK have both provided more military support to Ukraine than Germany. However, Germany has provided more military aid than France and Canada, according to the same analysis.

Mr Scholz’s remarks were an apparent snub of Britain’s support for Ukraine and came just hours after Volodymyr Zelensky, the Ukrainian president, hailed Boris Johnson as a “very important ally” who was providing the weapons it needed to fight Russia:

On Tuesday night, Angela Merkel defended her refusal to fast-track Ukraine into Nato prior to the outbreak of the war in February.

In her first interview since stepping down as chancellor last year, Ms Merkel said that she had concerns about corruption among Ukraine’s oligarchs and that a country could not simply “join overnight”.

She described Putin’s invasion as a “tragedy” and that there was “no justification” for the “brutal” war.

The former chancellor also revealed that after leaving office, she would take long walks across Germany’s Baltic coast wearing a hoodie so that locals would not recognise her.

Angela Merkel, the former German chancellor
Angela Merkel, the former German chancellor, defended her refusal to fast-track Ukraine into Nato before the war broke out CREDIT: Fabian Sommer/DPA via AP

Her successor, who has faced intense criticism for refusing to send Western tanks to Kyiv – as he fears it could trigger a global conflict – also complained that media coverage of his government was “sometimes not in line with reality”.

In May, the German broadsheet Die Welt revealed that Germany had not sent any heavy weapons to Ukraine since mid-March and appeared to be scaling back military support, contrary to Berlin’s claims.

During the same press conference, the four leaders were asked about whether talks with Putin at this stage, and efforts to avoid humiliating him, would help resolve the war in Ukraine.

“We have to continue our dialogue and continue speaking to each other,” Mr Scholz responded, only to be contradicted by his EU counterparts.

“We believe it is impossible to speak with a state that is trying to redraw the map in the 21st century,” said Gitanas Nauseda, the president of Lithuania.

Kaja Kallas and Arturs Krisjanis Karins
Kaja Kallas and Arturs Krisjanis Karins, the respective leaders of Estonia and Latvia, both raised concerns about the state of play in Ukraine CREDIT: Reuters/Janis Laizans

Referring to Emmanuel Macron’s warning that the West should not “humiliate” Russia, he added: “We agree on many issues in Europe, but there are some where we have not yet found agreement.”

Arturs Krisjanis Karins, the Latvian prime minister, also warned: “Putin will start talking only when he realises he is losing the war.”

Kaja Kallas, the Estonian prime minister, said: “We should not worry so much about what Putin feels. We should [worry more] about how Ukraine holds on.”

Mr Karins also underlined the importance that Ukraine can “win,” the war with Russia, a policy that Mr Scholz has so far refused to endorse.

The public disagreement reflects a growing division in Europe between Germany’s dovish approach to Putin and that of the Baltic states, which all share a land border with Russia.

A recent cartoon on the front page of Polish magazine Wprost showed the German and French leaders talking into one end of a phone receiver, while Putin bathed in blood on the other end:

However, the Baltic leaders expressed gratitude to Germany for providing economic, diplomatic and military support, such as sending anti-tank missiles and ammunition to Ukraine.

Mr Scholz also announced that Germany would step up its military presence in Lithuania in a display of solidarity against Russia. 

“We are ready to strengthen our engagement and to develop it towards a robust combat brigade,” he said, but did not give further details.

Berlin sent several hundred troops to Lithuania in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion to support about a thousand troops already in the country working alongside Nato.

Even before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Germany, which heads up a Nato battle group in Lithuania, had increased the size of its deployment from 550 to 1,000 soldiers.

German troops
Germany has sent several hundred troops to Lithuania in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion CREDIT: Valda Kalnina/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania – former Soviet states which are all now EU and Nato members – are worried that they could be next if Russia defeats Ukraine.

Since the start of the conflict, they have asked for more Nato troops and the creation of brigades to replace the current units. Brigades usually have about 4,000 soldiers.

“What is important for us, too, is that we discuss how we respond to the Russian attack by doing everything to make sure Russia cannot win this war,” Mr Scholz said.

Nato has strengthened its eastern flank in recent years, particularly since Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014.

It came after Mr Zelensky expressed his pleasure that he had not lost a “very important ally” as he thanked the Prime Minister for sending exactly the right weapons to fight Russia.

Placeholder image for youtube video: 6isHmVAjxTg

On Monday, Mr Zelensky spoke of his joy at his “friend” clinging to power in Britain after a record number of Tory MPs voted to try and oust the Prime Minister.

The Ukrainian president said: “I am very happy about it. I’m happy that I think Boris Johnson is a true friend of Ukraine. I regard him as our ally. Great Britain is our great ally.

“Boris is supporting us. Boris is very concrete in supporting Ukraine… I’m glad we have not lost a very important ally. This is great news.”

4 comments

  1. Scholz and the vile Merkel continue to burnish their reputations as known RuSSian agents.
    Scholz also managed to get Greece to delay its decision to send armour and heavy weaponry by months.

    Liked by 5 people

  2. RuSSian agents in a major British Trade Union are set to wreak havoc:

    The Telegraph reports today :

    “50,000 rail workers to shut down UK travel network with three days of strikes in June
    Glastonbury festival and by-elections threatened by UK train travel chaos in ‘biggest dispute since 1989’

    “The biggest rail strike in more than 30 years has been announced over three days later this month as “militant” union chiefs pile pressure on Boris Johnson by launching industrial action to coincide with crucial by-elections.
    Nationwide strikes on June 21, 23 and 25 were yesterday announced by the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union in “the biggest dispute on the network since 1989”.
    More than 50,000 workers from National Rail and 13 other operators will walk out on June 21, coinciding with a Tube strike in London, and another 40,000 union members will strike on the subsequent dates.
    The railway system will be crippled as voters cast their ballots in by-elections in Wakefield, in Yorkshire, and Tiverton and Honiton, in Devon, following the resignations of Conservative MPs Imran Ahmad Khan and Neil Parish. 
    Both ballots are seen as a key test of Mr Johnson’s authority after being wounded by a vote of confidence by MPs on Monday evening.

The industrial action will also wreak havoc for festival-goers travelling to Glastonbury, cricket fans heading to the third test between England and New Zealand in Leeds and disrupt those making their way to Armed Forces Day celebrations on June 25.
    It is the first time in three decades that signal workers from state-owned Network Rail will walk-out, making it almost impossible to run anything other than a skeleton service on strike days.
    Rail union RMT launch 3 days of national strike action across the railway network:
Over 50,000 railway workers will walkout as part of 3 days of national strike action later this month, in the biggest dispute on the network since 1989. https://t.co/CEaTfIQaOa pic.twitter.com/rhl0gLtCNw
    — RMT (@RMTunion) June 7, 2022
    Mick Lynch, RMT general secretary said: “Our union will now embark on a sustained campaign of industrial action which will shut down the railway system.”
    Last year he said: “The unions have got to make a militant stand – and use the strike weapon wherever it’s appropriate.”
    John Smith, chief executive of GB Railfreight added:  “The RMT strikes won’t just affect passenger services, they will have a major impact on the UK’s rail freight network too.
    “As a major artery for UK supply chains, consumers and businesses will find it harder to buy or move goods if we cannot operate. In a worst case scenario, we could see some disruption to the delivery of critical goods and materials as well, such as energy sources supplied to UK power plants on our trains.”
    As well as National Rail, the strike action involves: Chiltern Railways, Cross Country Trains, Greater Anglia, LNER, East Midlands Railway, c2c, Great Western Railway, Northern Trains, Southeastern, South Western Railway, Transpennine Express, Avanti West Coast and West Midlands Trains.”
    …….

    The key officials of the RMT are fanatical Irish putlerites.

    The Times describes the RMT as an “extremist union” run by a “far left cabal” that “is supporting Putin’s murderous adventures in Ukraine”.

    The Times’s contribution was an article headlined, “RMT railmen stick up for Kremlin”. It named RMT officials Brendan Kelly, Steve Skelly, Eddie Dempsey and Alex Gordon, along with former official Steve Hedley, accusing them of spouting “Kremlin propaganda”

    The Times depicts Kelly as a Russian patsy for having “repeated Kremlin claims that the Ukrainian government is allied with fascist forces”.

    On May 27, the Daily Mail mounted an attack on former RMT leader Steve Hedley along these lines. Under the headline, “EXPOSED: The bosses of Britain’s most extremist trade union and their rabid sympathies for Russian dictator Vladimir Putin,” reporter Guy Adams describes a picket on the London Underground, “just four days after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
    “And the most unusual thing about the RMT boss who is running it can be found on his raincoat. Not far from his RMT armband and a couple of socialist pin-badges, Hedley is wearing a striking black-and-orange ribbon. To those in the know, which might include anyone who follows Soviet or Baltic politics, it’s a Ribbon of St George.”

    Adams explains the ribbon “is banned in Ukraine and many Baltic states, where it is regarded as an ugly symbol of Russian military aggression.” He quotes Canadian MP Michael MacKay, describing it as “an anti-Ukrainian hate symbol… as deeply offensive as the swastika.”

    In an article published by associate editor Gordon Rayner today, the Telegraph went in on the RMT, linking them to Putin as the Russian president wages a deadly war with Ukraine.
    Rayner said the RMT, and particularly its assistant general secretary Eddie Dempsey, “have long-standing sympathies for the pro-Putin separatists who have been fighting government forces in the east of the country for almost a decade.”

    Dempsey, according to the article, visited the Donbas region in 2015 and posed for a picture with Aleksey Mozgovoy, leader of the pro-Russian “Ghost Brigade”.

    When Mozgovoy was killed two weeks later, Dempsey wrote a glowing obituary of the “charismatic” insurgent, and when the Telegraph contacted the RMT yesterday, he also did not express regret for his association with the former rebel leader.
    ……

    There can be no doubt that trade unions in many democracies will have been penetrated by putinazis.

    Liked by 5 people

    • It’s a fact, Sir Scradge, that trade unions were always a favorite target of the mob. Since mafia land is ruled by a mob, it makes sense that they too penetrated unions.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. “Olaf Scholz claims that Berlin has provided more support than Westminster…”

    Is there a stronger version of the word “lie”? If so, it is suitable for the kraut government. They are every bit the filthy liars as the shit nuggets in the Kremlin.

    Liked by 2 people

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