U.S. Ramstein Meeting on Arming Ukraine Goes Way Beyond NATO
April 28, 2022 (EIRNS)—The significance of the April 26 U.S.-sponsored meeting at the U.S. Ramstein Air Base in Germany on coordinating the supply of weapons to the Kyiv regime, is that the Anglo-American-driven effort to destroy Russia via Ukraine has gone way beyond NATO, even beyond Global NATO. The meeting, attended by a reported 40 countries from around the world including not only NATO members, but also “partners” based in Africa, Asia, and Southwest Asia, will become a monthly affair which “will be a vehicle for nations of good will to intensify our efforts and coordinate our assistance and focus on winning today’s fight and the struggles to come,” said Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin in a press conference following the meeting.
A key focus of these meetings will be improved coordination with participating nations’ defense industrial bases, Austin went on. “That means dealing with the tremendous demand that we’re facing for munitions and weapons platforms.”
Defense News, in reporting on the meeting, noted that in March, U.S. European Command created a new unit called the European Control Center Ukraine (ECCU), to coordinate and synchronize equipment deliveries from Washington and its partners. Fifteen other countries, some NATO members and some not, have provided staff for the ECCU, located at U.S. Army Garrison Stuttgart, a senior defense official told reporters on April 26.
Defense News also notes that the center has worked to rapidly ramp up deliveries to Ukraine, with flights to Europe going from fewer than 1 per day at the beginning to 8-10 flights per day now, delivering weapons from over 40 nations to Ukraine.
The New York Times asked Austin about his statement in Kyiv the day before, that “one of the United States’ goals in Ukraine now was to see Russia weakened,” and wanting to know what that means, specifically. “I think we’ve been pretty clear from the outset—we do want to make it harder for Russia to threaten its neighbors, and leave them less able to do that,” Austin replied. He claimed that over the course of the last 62 days,
“Russia has—in terms of its land forces, their land forces have been attrited in a very significant way—casualties are pretty substantial, they’ve lost a lot of equipment, they’ve used a lot of precision-guided munitions, they’ve lost a major surface combatant. And so they are, in fact, in terms of military capability, weaker than when this started.”
Therefore, “it will be harder for them to replace some of this capability as they go forward because of the sanctions and the trade restrictions that have been placed on them. And so, we would like to make sure, again, that they don’t have the same type of capability to bully their neighbors that we saw at the outset of this conflict.”