: :inin Kyiv (EET)

McCain pays tribute to Ukrainian “cyborgs” and calls on Obama to act decisively on Ukraine

US Senator John McCain who now chairs the Senate Committee on Armed Services made the statement in support of Ukraine because of escalation in violence and aggression in the Donbas conflict zone and the Russian buildup of military forces in the Donbas region. The text was published on his personal web page, the Ukrinform own correspondent in Washington, D.C. reports.
“Since the crisis in Ukraine began nearly a year ago, President Obama has stubbornly refused to provide lethal military assistance that would help Ukraine defend its sovereign territory and determine its own political future free of Russian coercion. By doing so, the President has isolated himself from the growing consensus – including some of the leading voices in his own political party – that this beleaguered democracy needs and deserves increased American support,” McCain stated.
“The day before”, said the senator, “former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urged the United States to ‘do more to help Ukraine defend its borders’ with ‘new equipment [and] new training for the Ukrainians.” Clinton said that “the Ukrainian army and the Ukrainian civilians who’ve been fighting against the separatists have proven that they’re worthy of some greater support.”
During the hearings of the Senate Committee on Armed Services Dr. Zbigniew Brzezinski said that “NATO and especially the U.S. should make some defensive weaponry available to Ukraine,” the published document said.
“In his State of the Union address, President Obama declared that the ‘shadow of crisis has passed’ while trumpeting the success of his diplomatic efforts against Russia,” the senator said. “But the shadow of crisis still looms over Ukraine. Sanctions and low oil prices have battered Russia’s economy, but have done nothing to curb Vladimir Putin’s aggression in Ukraine. Nearly 5,000 people have been killed in the conflict, and nearly one million more forced to flee their homes,” he said.
“Russian-backed separatists are on the offensive in eastern Ukraine, their mortar and rocket attacks inflicting horrific civilian casualties. Just yesterday, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko said as many as 9,000 Russian troops are inside his country as the flow of Russian tanks, heavy artillery, and armored vehicles continues,” the US Senator stated.
He also cited the US General Breedlove’s statement that NATO forces “are beginning to see the (heat) signatures of air defense systems and electronic warfare systems that have accompanied past Russian troop movements into Ukraine.”
Regarding events in Donetsk airport, McCain said that Ukrainians withstood the tragedy and defeat but not retreated. “Brave warriors known as ‘cyborgs’ have fought with legendary determination to hold the Donetsk airport, a bombed-out ruin of no operational value that has become a symbol of Ukraine’s defiant spirit,” the legislator said.
He said that for President Obama “it is time to demonstrate America’s own spirit of resolve by providing Ukraine the lethal military assistance it needs to defend itself. Failing to do so would be an unmistakable sign of weakness not only to Putin, but to potential aggressors around the world.”

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