Saturday, May 16, 2015

Break It Up for Parts, and Start Over

The Ukrainian navy has fallen apart? Who cares?

Ukraine's navy is dead?

Already in a sorry state after years of corruption and neglect, the force was eviscerated when Russia seized the Black Sea peninsula of Crimea in March last year.

Moscow snatched the pride of the fleet which was moored in its strategic ports, and convinced thousands of sailors to jump ship.

"It was a tragedy for our navy", officer Vitaliy Martynyuk, who was studying in the Crimean city of Sevastopol at the time of the annexation, says dejectedly.

So what if Ukraine's navy lost 2/3 of its strength? Just what did it do during the invasion of Crimea and what is it doing now to resist Russian aggression in the Donbas?

Good God, even Ukraine's marines just walked away instead of making a stand at their Crimean base to at least remind Russia that they started a war for Crimea rather than initiated a foreclosure.

Ukrainians should be grateful that their government doesn't have to waste money on the entire fleet.

This military capability is so low on Ukraine's defense priority list that Kiev should just about adopt the Swedish solution.

Ukraine needs an army with anti-armor and anti-aircraft capabilities. Then they need air power. And when they have that, then they need a navy to fight in the Black Sea.

Right now, Ukraine needs a small coast guard for peacetime work and coastal defense for war.

For the latter, they should have lots of minelaying equipment (vessels and planes), coastal defense batteries of missiles and cannons, and coastal defense infantry and fortifications to resist a Russian amphibious operation. When they've got that, splurge and buy small anti-ship missile boats to go after the Russian navy.

What is the point of having a navy if the Russians march to Poland's border because Ukraine's ground forces can't stop them?