U.S. military officials overseeing operations and defense relations in Central America, South America and the Caribbean see an opportunity to persuade some of those countries to give up their Russian-made weapons and systems and send them to Kyiv.
“We are working with the countries that have the Russian equipment to either donate it or switch it out for United States equipment,” General Laura Richardson, the commander of U.S. Southern Command, told a virtual audience Thursday during an appearance at the Atlantic Council in Washington.
Richardson said discussions with six countries, in particular, “are in the works,” but did not elaborate.
“As a matter of protocol, we are not going to discuss details about the defense resources of sovereign nations or speculate about any support to Ukraine they have not already announced,” SOUTHCOM spokesperson Jose Ruiz told VOA by email Friday.
“Insofar as offering our defense partners opportunities to purchase or receive U.S. defense equipment, we offer what we consider to be a better alternative,” he added. “U.S. defense equipment is superior in both its proven reliability and the level of sustainment support it receives during its operational life.”
“That’ll be a very, very heavy lift,” General Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said Friday after a meeting of the Ukraine Contact Group at Ramstein Air Base in Germany.
“The Ukrainians have the personnel, but they have to be trained,” he said. “And if you look at the weather and terrain, et cetera, you can see that you have a relatively short window of time to accomplish both those key tasks.
“I think it can be done, but I think that it will be a challenge. There’s no question about it,” Milley added.
No worries about the ‘carbon footprint’ of war, eh? Greeda Thunberg (fraud) what say you? Oh and the WEF’rs?
“The best examples of that are Peru, Mexico, Ecuador, Colombia and Argentina,” said Ryan Brobst, a research analyst at the Center on Military and Political Power at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies (FDD).
“Specifically, they have a lot of Russian- or Soviet-made helicopters,” he told VOA.
According to data collected by the Swedish-based Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, at least seven Central and South American countries have bought weapons from Russia since 2000, with Brazil and Peru taking delivery of Russian military equipment as recently as 2016.