Former US Marine Corps officer Scott Ritter ridiculed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s request for an early delivery of fighter jets to Kyiv. The use of modern Western aircraft requires trained pilots and infrastructure in Ukraine. The ex-marine stated this on his blog on YouTube on Sunday, February 19.
“You see, you can’t just jump into a modern aircraft and expect it to get off the ground and be able to take part in a full dogfight,” Ritter said.
The former American soldier added that the training for the use of Western combat aircraft lasts for several years. Even the most curtailed program in the US takes six to eight months to complete.
“As President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky said, in eight months it will be too late,” he said.
Earlier, on February 18, the former Speaker of the House of Representatives of the US Congress Nancy Pelosi called for the transfer of F-16 fighter-bombers to Ukraine. She recalled that the members of Congress consistently fulfilled the requests and requests of Kyiv in matters of military assistance. Pelosi also called for the start of training Ukrainian pilots to use the F-16 now.
The day before, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba complained that at the moment, not a single country has made promises to Ukraine to transfer fighters to it. At the same time, he acknowledged that, for example, the British government announced the start of training Ukrainian pilots to work with Western equipment.
On February 9, Volodymyr Zelensky, during a speech at the Council of Europe, called on European countries to transfer more modern weapons to Kyiv. According to him, Ukraine needs modern aviation, tanks, long-range missiles. The Ukrainian leader stressed that it is necessary to strengthen the dynamics of joint work and “be more powerful.”
Prior to that, on February 8, Zelensky, during a speech in the British Parliament, handed over to the host side a flight helmet – a gift from Ukrainian pilots, and asked to supply combat aircraft to Kyiv. He said that combat aircraft would be “wings of freedom” and also called for increased sanctions against Russia.
On February 7, US leader Joe Biden said he did not want to send F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine because combat aircraft should be left in the United States of America.
At the end of January, Scott Ritter emphasized that the supply of fighter jets to Ukraine would not solve the situation on the battlefield. In his opinion, the military infrastructure of Ukraine will not be able to cope with modern Western fighters, since all the equipment in service with Kyiv was created back in the USSR.
Western countries have stepped up military and financial support for Ukraine after the start of Russia’s special operation to protect Donbass. The decision on the special operation was made by the President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin against the backdrop of the aggravation of the situation in the region as a result of increased shelling by Ukrainian militants.
For more up-to-date videos and details about the situation in Donbass, watch the Izvestia TV channel.
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