By Nie Shuyi
US Secretary of State Blinken met with Ukrainian President Zelenskyy during his blitz visit to the country on September 6, where he announced Washington's plan to provide another US$1 billion worth of aid to Kyiv, of which US$175 million in military aid. According to the Pentagon's announcement on the same day, the military aid would include 120mm armor-piercing, depleted uranium munitions. The Ukraine crisis has dragged on for more than one year and a half without any sign of easing, and the US is still pouring oil on the flame by providing money and munitions in order to serve its self-interests.
This decision has drawn close attention from the international community. Depleted uranium bombs are strong armor-piercing munitions that contain radioactive substances that could leave enduring contamination on the environment and consequently damage human health. The International Coalition to Ban Uranium Weapons (ICBUW), an NGO, warned that the intake of depleted uranium fallout would cause health risks such as cancer and congenital defects. The US used this kind of weapon in the 1990 Gulf War and 2003 Iraqi War, and NATO used it in the 1999 Kosovo War, leaving Iraq and the Balkan region still exposed to radioactive radiation today.
This is not the first time that the US provided Ukraine with weapons that might cause grave consequences. In July this year, the White House announced its agreement to provide Ukraine with cluster munitions, which met universal objection from the international community. The US has used cluster bombs in Southeast Asia, the Balkan region, the Middle East, and Afghanistan during the past few decades, and the undetonated bombs are still endangering and threatening local lives today. It's not hard to imagine what the Ukrainians would be forced to face if the weapon was actually used – the air contaminated by radioactive fallout, land strewn with undetonated cluster bombs and other munitions, and tens of thousands of destructive landmines.
This has ripped off the mask behind which the US has been claiming that what it's doing is good for the Ukrainians. The fact is that, as the culprit for the Ukraine crisis, the US has never for a minute cared about the country's independence and freedom. All it has ever thought about is how to make the best use of Ukraine as a chess piece and tool to geopolitically contain and defeat Russia, even if that means fighting till the last Ukrainian.
Since the crisis broke out, Washington has kept fanning the flames and instigating sanctions in order to keep up the fire of war so it could fish in troubled waters – something that has become as clear as daylight. To prolong the war for as long as possible, it has been pumping assistance into Ukraine incessantly, with its sum of aid topping the Western world. Republican McConnell, the Senate minority leader, said point-blank on September 6 that providing assistance to Ukraine means they could cripple one of America's most important strategic rivals without firing a bullet.
As the US is sending more advanced weapons and equipment to Ukraine, American arms dealers are making a fortune. A report by America's Foundation for Defense of Democracies this January said that the country had raked in at least US$21.7 billion in direct fiscal revenues from the Ukraine conflict, while data from DoD's Defense Security Cooperation Agency showed that the approved weapon sales from the US to NATO allies almost doubled from 2021 to 2022 both in terms of quantity and value. As long as the war keeps on, the gigantic American military complexes will be able to keep making huge profits. Jimmy Dore, an anti-war activist and political commentator, hit the nail on the head at an anti-war rally in February by saying: Do you know that we can end the Russia-Ukraine conflict by diplomatic means? But American politicians want the arms dealers to make money and thus obtain an endless stream of political donations.
Financial Times wrote in an op-ed titled "The US will be the ultimate winner of Ukraine's crisis" that the US will benefit most from the consequences of the Ukraine crisis both in terms of economy and security policy. The crisis that has lasted more than 500 days has plunged the region into a miserable humanitarian disaster. If the US really wanted to "protect the Ukrainian people" as it claimed, it should have pushed for a peaceful solution rather than aggravate the tension out of selfish motives and throw the struggling people further down the abyss of suffering.
Editor's note: Originally published on chinanews.com, this article is translated from Chinese into English and edited by the China Military Online. The information and opinions in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of eng.chinamil.com.cn.