Ukrainians need Abrams tanks to stop Russians from planting deadly landmines

    WORLD  01 April 2023 - 00:02

    Mitzi Perdue, a writer, speaker, and author, has written an article for Times of San Diego arguing that Abrams tanks are the tools that Ukraine so desperately needs to put a definitive end to Russian invasion. Caliber.Az reprints the article.

    The Russian invasion of Ukraine has officially surpassed the one-year mark with no immediate end in sight. In the United States, public support for providing aid and weaponry is slowly waning — but for people in Ukraine, living through the conflict day after day, the need for robust weaponry to aid them in their fight only grows more pronounced as the conflict drags on.

    This month the United States announced another large aid package for Ukraine, but we need to ensure that we are sending as much support as we can, rather than just providing Ukraine with half-measures that only perpetuate the war. From non-governmental organizations to military and weapons experts, those on the ground in Ukraine know that to win the war quickly and decisively, the Ukrainians need more military hardware.

    The longer the war lasts, the more destruction the Russians will bring to Ukraine — planting landmines and losing lives all the while. 

    As founder of the Lithuania-based NGO, Blue/Yellow for Ukraine, and someone who lives in a country that borders Russia, Jonas Ohman has had a lot of exposure to Russia and its attitudes towards conflict. Through his experience, he has come to believe that the least expensive, most effective, and most humane way to deal with the Russian landmines is an Abrams tank.

    These tanks are both agile and effective and with their 1,500-horsepower turbine engine, 120 mm main gun and special armor they are “particularly lethal against heavy armor forces.” In short, they are the tools that Ukraine so desperately needs to put a definitive end to this invasion.

    In cooperation with Blue/Yellow Ukraine USA, Ohman spends significant time in war-torn Ukraine. He’s seen that when the Ukrainians liberate an area and force the Russians to withdraw, they plant landmines and dangerous explosives in the village to extend the Ukrainian citizens’ suffering even after the Russians have gone. Not only do they plant these explosives, but they do so in a psychologically sophisticated manner to maximize their efficacy in damaging Ukrainian citizens’ physical and mental state.

    When demining experts enter a newly occupied building, they enter houses to make sure they are safe for families to return. They look for landmines covertly planted in wells, garages, kitchen appliances, and gathering rooms — often turning up empty handed.

    That is, until they enter the children’s room, where Russians plant mines with toys and in other places where children are most likely to be victims. The Russians hope that the first thing the children will do when they return home is to run to their bedroom and look for their favorite toys.

    The Russians aren’t just setting out landmines and booby traps intermittently when leaving occupied territories — they’re also doing it on a large scale, distributing hundreds of thousands of landmines over vast swaths of Ukrainian territory. Using special Zemledeliye mine-laying vehicles, thousands of mines are launched using a rocket launching mechanism, rendering rural areas and farmland virtually unusable — and certainly life-threatening. The Russian term “zemledelyie” translates to “agriculture,” appropriately named for the vehicles that target Ukrainian farmland first and threaten the food supply.   

    As famine remains a very real threat for millions of Ukrainians, Ohman may be right. We need to provide Ukraine with more military hardware to push Russia out of Ukraine as quickly as possible. Doing so will save lives from the front lines, where brave citizens are fighting for their country, to the countryside where invaders continue to lay mines that make the farmland dangerous and perpetuate hunger.

    It may be counterintuitive, but providing one strong arms supply will be the push that Ukraine needs to end the war and the suffering once and for all.

    Caliber.Az

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