Russia slams German tank decision as escalation of conflict, betrayal of history

MOSCOW, Jan 25 — Russia reacted with fury today to Germany’s final decision to approve the delivery of Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine, saying Berlin was abandoning its “historical duty to Russia” arising from Nazi crimes in World War Two.

International Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in a Telegram submit that the move was affirmation of Germany’s involvement in “a war planned in advance” towards Russia.

The Russian embassy in Berlin said the choice – which paves the way for other Nato customers also to mail German-built tanks – would escalate the 11-month conflict in Ukraine, which Moscow casts more and more as a perilous face-off concerning Russia and the U.S.-led alliance.

“This incredibly risky selection normally takes the conflict to a new degree of confrontation,” Ambassador Sergei Nechayev explained. He additional it would trigger “irreparable destruction to the currently deplorable point out of Russian-German relations”.

There was no quick response from President Vladimir Putin, who shortly following the announcement took element in a lengthy televised assembly with learners but referred only briefly to the “complicated” protection condition experiencing Russia.

Kyiv and its Western allies say Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, launched on Feb. 24 previous 12 months, amounts to an unprovoked war of aggression aimed at seizing territory. Moscow claims the West is employing Ukraine to weaken Russia’s personal safety.

‘Historical responsibility’

Germany’s choice on tanks adopted weeks of agonising by the government of Chancellor Olaf Scholz, prompted by considerations about escalating the war and provoking Russia.

Much more than 80 yrs immediately after their country invaded Soviet Russia and Ukraine in Environment War Two, some Germans recoil at the notion of sending tanks into a new conflagration there, out of a perception of historic guilt that the Russian embassy statement straight tapped into.

“Berlin’s choice signifies the ultimate refusal of the Federal Republic of Germany to realize its historic accountability to our folks for the terrible, timeless crimes of Nazism in the course of the Good Patriotic War, and the consigning to oblivion of the hard route of publish-war reconciliation between Russians and Germans,” Nechayev reported.

“With the acceptance of the management of Germany, fight tanks with German crosses will once more be sent to the ‘eastern front’, which will inevitably guide to the deaths of not only Russian troopers, but also the civilian inhabitants.”

Kyiv has for months requested for Western tanks that it says it desperately needs to give its forces the firepower and mobility to split by means of Russian defensive traces and recapture occupied territory in the east and south.

Russia has frequently claimed overseas tanks will “burn” in Ukraine. It claims they will only extend the war and extend Ukrainian struggling, and that the West is “deluded” to imagine if not. — Reuters