No, State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf did not use those words, but I don’t know what else you call the claim of one sovereign nation lobbing explosive shells from their territory across the border into another nation’s territory. An oopsie? A grand snafu? Nah, let’s go with act of war.
“We have new evidence that the Russians intend to deliver heavier and more powerful multiple rocket launchers to the separatists forces in Ukraine, and have evidence that Russia is firing artillery from within Russia to attack Ukrainian military positions,” Harf revealed on Thursday.
— Matt Lee (@APDiploWriter) July 24, 2014
This is the first time American officials have confirmed that Russian forces were firing heavy weaponry into Ukraine, but the evidence of this offensive has been accumulating for some time.
On July 16, just hours before President Barack Obama announced a new round of sanctions on Russian individuals and sectors of the Russian economy, and less than 24-hours before pro-Moscow militants took down Malaysian Airlines Flight 17, video surfaced online indicating a Russian volley of artillery was being fired into Ukraine.
Given that this latest major escalation of hostilities in Europe after a month of major escalations has been confirmed, continued European dithering on stiffer sanctions is inexcusable. That said, inaction on the part of Europe is likely to continue.
As the French (!) intellectual Bernard-Henri Lévy wrote recently in the pages of The New York Times (!!),”In European parlance, this is called the spirit of Munich — appeasement. And it is a disgrace.”