Polish edition Defence24.pl, specializing in defense issues, published a material entitled "The Polish mission in Ukraine is the creation of a modern army", which says that the military from the 20st Warsaw is on the Yavoriv training ground, located 1 kilometers from the border with Poland tank the brigades completed the next training cycle of Ukrainian mechanized units.
A joint multinational training group Joint Multinational Training Group - Ukraine (JMTG-U) operating in the territory of the Armed Forces Training Center of the Armed Forces of Ukraine has been established by the armed forces of five states: the United States as a leading country, Poland, Canada, Denmark and Lithuania. In addition, depending on the need for training, there are contingents from other NATO countries. The last, the seventh change of the Polish contingent, which spent more than two months on the test site, consisted of 35 soldiers and officers of the 3 mechanized battalion of the 1 16th Warsaw Tank Brigade. Among them, first of all, were gunners, tank crews, snipers, intelligence officers and staff workers.
The publication notes that the main task for this mission is to rid the Ukrainian Armed Forces of Ukraine from the post-Soviet legacy and translate them into NATO standards. It is assumed that this goal will be achieved by 2020 year, since this year the training program of the Ukrainian military ends.
Major Radoslaw Kravets, commander of the VII shift of the Polish contingent, told the journalist about the course of the training process:
So far, the units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine are still functioning according to the Soviet model, and the current changes are aimed at adapting them to NATO structures. The unit we are training now does not have such a staff structure that operates in our army - here the headquarters is only from the level of the battalion [...]. Just as in the Polish 20-30 Troop years ago, there are only deputies in Ukraine on operational issues or logistics. Therefore, the introduction of division into sections is carried out, which for many is a novelty. It is also a military decision making process, which is also aimed at headquarters training. We teach how to adapt the decision-making process to our standards. We also train instructors who, in the future, after completing this mission, will train their soldiers and carry out our work.
According to Radoslav Kravets, from the very beginning of this training cycle, it was noticeable that the Ukrainian military personnel had extensive experience and were professionals in their field. In addition, he stressed that “the flow of knowledge and information was two-way”:
It is known that we acted as instructors here, but the soldiers we trained have participation in the ATO and, as a rule, combat experience. This is completely different, as well as the fact that training and the reality of war are two different things. The soldiers of my shift made interesting recommendations and experience from this. [...] This is important not only for the Ukrainian troops, but also for us, as well as the fact that this conflict occurs in our immediate neighborhood. [...] Ukrainian soldiers willingly shared their experience gained during the fighting. Tactical decisions were especially interesting. This is a conflict that is currently occurring, in addition to an adversary who is not a regular army.
As the newspaper writes, the current Polish group trained soldiers of the Ukrainian 14-th separate mechanized brigade from Vladimir-Volynsky in the framework of the JMTG-U. This unit, which took part in the hostilities in the east of the country, including in the area Popasnaya. It is equipped, in particular, with BMP-1 vehicles, modernized T-64 tanks, and 2C1 artillery systems, the Carnation and BM-21 Grad.
Despite the fact that Polish instructors received additional training at the Artillery and Arms Training Center in Torun, this did not save the mission from some problems. On the one hand, they concerned the absence of drawings, diagrams and other visual aids. On the other hand, a certain difficulty for the Polish military was, for example, the T-64 tanks, which were never in service with the Polish Army.
At the same time, the publication notes that the purpose of the JMTG-U mission is not to teach the basics of handling weapons, and, above all, the introduction of standards, procedures, and command systems that are compatible with NATO standards. And it is in this respect that Polish instructors can be very useful to the Ukrainian side, because together with the Lithuanians or Estonians who are also present in Yavoriv, they have a unique experience of transforming their armed forces from the standard of the Warsaw Treaty to NATO - and this is exactly what Ukraine plans to achieve thanks to the help of Americans, Poles and other instructors JMTG-U.
The material states that these transformations and support for the Armed Forces of Ukraine is an essential element of strengthening, not only the eastern flank of NATO, but much broader - enhancing the level of security in Europe. The publication concludes:
A militarily strong and politically stable Ukraine is not only a significant limitation of the expansion of Russia, but also the stabilization of the eastern flank of NATO, the Balkans and the Black Sea basin. Therefore, the JMTG-U mission is for Poland an important investment in future and present security. Perhaps, we should consider more active participation in the training in Yavorov, as well as in other initiatives related to the modernization and "de-Sovietisation" of the Ukrainian armed forces, so that we have a reliable ally in the southeast. It is also important to remember that this ally is interested in cooperation and at the same time leads a defensive war on its own territory.
Polish readers actively responded to this material, and the very fact of training Ukrainian military by Polish instructors provoked a discussion among Internet users. Here is a translation of some interesting comments.
- Sorry for the words regarding this ally.
- Who pays for it?
- Pleases help for this brave people. They have suffered a lot. In 30, the Russians staged a mass famine in Ukraine, which resulted in about 10 million people dying. I add that the cause was the betrayal of the Poles in 1921 year. We then left the allies at the mercy of the Bolsheviks.
- We have suffered more at the expense of this valiant people (Volyn).
- This brave people gave Crimea, without even squeaking. This country is under the rule of the oligarchs in the same way as before the Maidan. Only the snout at the trough changed, and the simple Ukrainian people both were and remain oppressed. As long as this does not change, you should not count on the establishment of a real, stable democracy there, and until such a democracy is established there, this bizarre state will constitute one complete mystery for Poland.
- Interestingly, a militarily strong Ukraine will not want to return the territories seized by the Poles, that is, to the east bank of the Vistula? This is the only country in whose parliament there are forces that are in favor of revising the borders with Poland. Even Russian deputies do not decide on such ideas.
- Sorry, but this is probably a rhetorical question: how can someone who does not have a modern army help create it for others?
- Therefore, the text clearly states that learning is mutual. Ukrainians have an even more backward army, but despite this, they can teach something.
- to help create a modern army? We must maintain a level of the Ukrainian army so that it can hold back the onslaught of Russia. We do not need another strong army on our border.
dziadek z olgino
- The support of Ukraine will cost us dearly.
- And non-support is Russia's support.
“Yavorov is a place of glory for Polish weapons; in September, the 1939 fighters of the Hutsul rifle regiment of General Prugar-Ketling in a night battle literally cut out with a bayonet a motorized SS-Germany regiment, which then ceased to exist.
- Not cut, only strongly battered one of the battalions of this regiment.
historia lubi się powtarzać
- You forgot to add about the attacks during the battle on the Polish military of the fifth Ukrainian column.
- Policy towards Ukraine: of course, assistance and training, but we must be ahead by one generation of military equipment with regard to their weapons. In addition, the correct placement of military units is necessary, because in which case, we must respond. Who knows what will come to their mind in 10 or 20 years.
- Stupidity is complete. Ukraine is not our ally, and many Ukrainians themselves frankly hate us. Teaching them and passing on our military secrets is a complete misunderstanding. I know that the soldiers themselves have a similar opinion that this political decision is probably our ally.
- Do you think that Ukraine could attack a NATO member? In fact, we have a common enemy, who once organized partitions in Poland.
“Despite your personal prejudices, we cannot put Ukraine under the control of the Kremlin.” This is Poland’s national interest and a guarantee of our own independence.
- Maybe they should first build a modern army in Poland and only then go on demonstrations?
“Judging by the comments, this nationalist narrative of rising from its knees and searching for enemies everywhere, proposed by the ruling party, has received wide recognition. But this is a stupid position. We will not defeat Russia by military means, but only with the help of soft power, and the best opportunity is the transfer of Western standards from Poland to Ukraine, from where they will go further to Russia. At the moment, the best we can do is to support them in this war. Sorry, did not give them any weapons. Already, even Lithuania handed over to them dozens, if not more than a hundred pieces of large-caliber machine guns of caliber 12,7-14,5 mm.
- The stupidity of our politicians is unmatched.
It should be noted that these comments reflect the division that exists regarding Ukraine in Polish society. Despite all the efforts of the majority of Polish media, which are intensely sculpted from the eastern neighbor, the image of the “victim of Russian aggression”, many Poles do not believe in such a narrative. At the same time, the main reason why the inhabitants of Poland with hostility belong to the Square is the active planting beyond the eastern border of Bandera ideology.
We should not forget about the revanchist sentiments that are present in Polish nationalist circles. In Poland, they never forgot that Lviv was the third largest city in the Second Polish – Lithuanian Commonwealth, and Volyn and Eastern Lesser Poland (Galicia) were part of it. Even in the days of the Polish People's Republic, children in the courtyards chanted a count, which said that thanks to "one atomic bomb, we will return to Lviv again." Polish nationalists consider Ukraine as an artificial entity, which must be divided between Poland, Russia, Hungary and Romania, therefore in Polish social networks one can see slogans like “Crimea - Russia, Lviv - Poland”. In addition, in the conflict in the Donbas, the sympathies of many nationalist-minded Poles are not on the side of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, but on the side of the inhabitants of the LPR and the DPR, who, from their point of view, are fighting with Banderism.
On the other hand, Ukrainian nationalists also openly dislike their Polish neighbors and suspect them of revanchism. So, back in 2016, the Vgolos edition, which is the mouthpiece of the Freedom party, published an article entitled “Will Poland Attack Ukraine?”, Which did not rule out that Poland would want to reclaim its territories before 1939. In this material, experts compared the military potential of both countries and considered a hypothetical option for the entry of Polish troops into the territory of Ukraine. The article ended on an optimistic note - as stated by military expert Alexei Arestovich “we will very easily defeat them, because we have combat experience in deterring Russian aggression”. And recently, the svobodovets Mikhalchishin suspected the Polish inhabitants of Lvov that they were waiting for the arrival of the Polish army. “You are potential Givi and Motorola (of both sexes), Polish“ Abrams ”will not wait,” he wrote on the portal zik.ua.
In general, it can be stated that the Polish-Ukrainian military alliance is largely artificial and exists only thanks to the Russophobia of the ruling elites of both countries, which is strongly supported and implanted by partners from Washington. And if this unifying principle is removed, then it is quite likely that the current “allies” can easily turn into deadly enemies.