Moscow has criticized calls for the West to deploy warplanes to Ukraine, calling it “absurd” to think that such a transfer of arms wouldn’t exacerbate tensions.
Moscow officials attacked assertions that Western nations could send fighter planes like the F-16 to Ukraine without worsening hostilities, with a Kremlin spokesperson even going so far as to call the idea “absurd.”
It comes after French President Emmanuel Macron said on Monday that deploying some of his country’s fighter jets to Ukraine was not “prohibited in principle” if Volodymyr Zelensky’s government could guarantee the planes wouldn’t be used to exacerbate the war.
However, Moscow has harshly criticized Macron’s claim that combat planes could be dispatched to Ukraine without raising tensions between the West and Russia. A spokesperson for the Russian foreign ministry told media that Macron’s assertion that it was possible was unfeasible.
According to the Russian TASS news agency, spokesperson Maria Zakharova said at a briefing on Wednesday, “Forgive me, but it’s some kind of foolishness.”
The French president, as well as the “increasingly bellicose tone of Western leaders, who have not been bashful about making loud pronouncements on the Ukrainian situation lately,” were further criticized by Zakharova.
“Is the French president truly certain that arming the Kiev regime with heavy weaponry and combat planes won’t worsen the situation?” she questioned. “I won’t accept that a mature guy could have that logic.”
“Such words merely feed Zelensky’s regime’s insatiable appetite, which it has already shown by bombing hospitals and killing civilians. As Mr. Macron put it, Western military infusions will not lead to an escalation of the war. Naturally, they provide tranquility. Obviously, cookies and sweets will be dropped from these planes,” she continued cynically.
Despite the fact that the Russian spokeswoman’s stinging remarks on the subject of deploying fighter planes to Ukraine may cause some in the West to pause, it is unlikely that they will put an end to discussions about the prospect, which only seems to be gaining ground lately.
Many political figures in the West are also now leaning toward trying to take an even more hardline interventionist strategy to the conflict, despite initial reluctance, particularly in the early days of Russia’s revived invasion in 2022. For example, former British prime minister Boris Johnson is now publicly advocating for fighter jets to be handed over to Ukraine.
“Now is not the time to scale back our support for Ukraine; rather, it is the time to increase it. Give them what they require,” Johnson urged in a recent interview.
He insisted: “Supply the Ukrainians what they need as soon as possible. Every time we’ve claimed that it would be a mistake to provide such and such a piece of armament, we wind up doing so and it ends up being the correct thing for Ukraine. Complete this.”