Nazi Symbols in Kiev as Shipments of NATO Arms Endanger Ceasefire
September 17, 2014
NBC News & Jason Ditz / AntiWar.com & Kirit Radia / ABC World News
Germans were confronted with images of their country's dark past on Monday night, when German public broadcaster ZDF showed video of Ukrainian soldiers with Nazi symbols on their helmets. Ukrainian Defense Minister Valery Heletey has reported that NATO is so eager to see that ceasefire collapse that it has started direct shipments of weapons into Ukraine.
German TV Shows Nazi Symbols on
Helmets of Ukraine Soldiers
(September 12, 2014) -- Germans were confronted with images of their country's dark past on Monday night, when German public broadcaster ZDF showed video of Ukrainian soldiers with Nazi symbols on their helmets in its evening newscast. In a report on the fragile cease-fire in eastern Ukraine, Moscow correspondent Bernhard Lichte used pictures of a soldier wearing a combat helmet with the "SS runes" of Hitler's infamous black-uniformed elite corps. A second soldier was seen with a swastika on his gear. "Volunteer battalions from nearly every political spectrum are reinforcing the government side," the ZDF correspondent said in his report.
The video was shot last week in Ukraine by a camera team from Norwegian broadcaster TV2. "We were filming a report about Ukraine's AZOV battalion in the eastern city of Urzuf, when we came across these soldiers," Oysten Bogen, a correspondent for the private television station, told NBC News. Minutes before the images were taped, Bogen said he had asked a spokesperson whether the battalion had fascist tendencies. "The reply was: absolutely not, we are just Ukrainian nationalists," Bogen said.
Ukrainian soldiers with Nazi symbols on their helmets, including the swastika and the SS runes of Hitler's infamous black-uniformed elite corps.
Ukraine Ceasefire in Jeopardy
As NATO Ships Arms
Jason Ditz / AntiWar.com
(September 14, 2014) -- Heavy fighting today in the rebel capital city of Donetsk put the ongoing eastern Ukraine ceasefire in serious jeopardy, with both sides claiming the other fired first. The move comes just a day after Ukrainian Premier Arseniy Yatsenyuk talked up the "state of war" between his nation and Russia.
The ceasefire has more or less held since it was brokered by Russia, though it came to the chagrin of NATO, and led to new rounds of sanctions against Russia for "interfering" in the country.
Ukrainian Defense Minister Valery Heletey reported NATO is so eager to see that ceasefire collapse that they've started direct shipments of weapons under a sideline deal he claims was made at the Cardiff summit two weeks ago.
"I have no right to disclose any specific country we reached that agreement with," insisted Heletey. Some NATO nations have denied any plan to provide "lethal aid" to Ukraine's military, though the alliance did publicly agree to some funding for them.
Watch Kiev Mob Throw
Ukrainian Lawmaker in the Garbage
Kirit Radia / ABC World News
MOSCOW (September 16, 2014) -- An angry mob tossed a Ukrainian lawmaker into a dumpster outside the parliament building in Kiev today, taunting him and shouting obscenities. As police looked on, the protestors flipped pro-Russian Vitaly Zhuravsky into the trash bin, then held him down and threw a car tire and water onto him before he was finally able to escape.
Zhuravsky is a prominent former member of ousted President Viktor Yanukovich's Party of the Regions. The incident took place before a set of controversial votes today. The first granted greater autonomy to two breakaway regions in east Ukraine that have been home to intense fighting by Russian-backed rebels.
Fighters who have not committed war crimes were also granted amnesty. The move was a concession to Russia, but also intended to reinforce a fragile ceasefire. Another vote ratified a trade association agreement with the European Union. That deal had been shelved by President Yanukovich last year after pressure from the Kremlin. The move backfired, however, leading to street protests that ultimately forced Yanukovich to flee the country in February.
Posted in accordance with Title 17, Section 107, US Code, for noncommercial, educational purposes.