The big Ukraine news this past week was the threat of ongoing missile attacks at a nuclear power plant the Russian military is occupying in Ukraine.

Saying that they were occupying the plant and it was totally ludicrous to say that they were attacking it, Russia’s foreign ministry accused the European Union of “blatantly lying” by saying that Russian forces were risking nuclear disaster by attacking the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant situated along the Dnieper River. 

Russian diplomats noted a statement from the EU that accused Russian forces of jeopardizing the facility and preventing safety experts from having access to the facility. 

Maria Zakharova, the Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, said in a statement obtained by RT that Western countries are—once again—“descending to outright lies, arguing that the threats to the ZNPP [Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant] are created by Russia.”

“Obviously, this contradicts the facts that we have repeatedly cited, including within the walls of the Security Council,” the statement read. “It is undeniable that the attacks on the station and Energodar are carried out by Ukrainian armed groups acting on orders from Kiev.”

Vassily Nebenzia, Russia’s ambassador to the UN, said last week that Kiev’s actions near the Zaporozhye nuclear plant could lead to a catastrophe on the same level as the Chernobyl blast in 1986.

“Obviously, this contradicts the facts that we have repeatedly cited, including within the walls of the Security Council,” the statement read. “It is undeniable that the attacks on the station and Energodar are carried out by Ukrainian armed groups acting on orders from Kiev.”

Ukraine’s military confirmed that it used a kamikaze drone to kill Russian soldiers who were inside a tent about 150 yards from a reactor, The New York Times reported.

Both sides have assigned blame to the other for targeting Europe’s largest nuclear facility in the city on the Dnieper River in southeastern Ukraine. The facility has been controlled by the Russians since the early days of the war, but it is being operated by Ukrainian staff.

The site has been targeted in attacks over the past few weeks that are becoming more dangerous by the day, according to Nebenzia.

“We’ve repeatedly warned our western colleagues that, should they fail to talk sense into the Kyiv regime, it would take the most heinous and reckless steps, which would have consequences far beyond Ukraine,” she told the UN Security Council last week, according to RT. “That is exactly what is happening.”

She blamed Ukrainian forces for attacking the power plant intentionally and said a disaster could happen “at any moment.”

Energoatom, the Ukrainian operator of the facility, confirmed that the situation is worsening and “radioactive substances are located nearby and several radiation sensors have been damaged.”

A Ukrainian official told Euronews that a sewage pump station at the facility was damaged but no radiation has been detected. There are “several tons” of radioactive waste at the site, the official said.

Antonio Guterres, UN secretary-general, called on both sides to immediately stop fighting near the site.

Medvedev Blasts ‘Scumbags’ in Kyiv

Dmitry Medvedev, former Russian President and now deputy chairman of Russia’s Security Council, said the West and Ukrainian officials are actively seeking another Chernobyl-like disaster in Ukraine, according to Russia’s Tass.

“The scumbags in Kiev and their Western backers seem to be ready to stage another Chernobyl,” he posted on Telegram. “Rockets and shells are falling ever closer to the Zaporozhye nuclear power plant’s reactors and radioactive isotope storage facilities.”

He called allegations that Russia was the aggressor near the facility as “100 percent nonsense.”

He dismissed the allegations Russia was behind these attacks as “one-hundred-percent nonsense.”

“Even the UN does not believe this,” he said.

TASS reported that Ukrainian forces carried out strikes near the facility, but most of the rockets were stopped by air defense systems. The report said several shells did hit infrastructure at the facility and the nuclear waste storage area. 

Officials from Russia accuse Ukraine of trying to create a dirty bomb in the Russian-controlled region by compromising the facility. 

TRENDPOST: The Trends Journal has been against Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine since the beginning of the conflict, but we have consistently pointed out that the invasion was not unprovoked. We have also been reporting that the western media has only been reporting on one side of the story: the Ukrainian side. 

In fact, after the Russian invasion, Pope Francis agreed, saying, “NATO barking at Russia’s gate may have compelled [Russian President Vladimir] Putin to unleash the invasion of Ukraine. I have no way of telling whether his rage has been provoked, but I suspect it was, maybe, facilitated by the West’s attitude.” 

Both Ukraine and Russia have been blaming each other for attacking the nuclear facility but one has to wonder why Russia, which is trying to connect the facility to the Crimean electricity grid, would purposely attack the power plant. 

“It’s encouraging to see that the Russians want to use the electricity; that does imply that they don’t want to damage [the power plant],” Michael Black, the director of the Centre of Nuclear Engineering at Imperial College London, told Al Jazeera.

Nuclear reactors need to be cooled by a steady flow of water and there is concern that the facility is not getting the proper equipment and supplies to safely operate. 

Experts told the outlet that if the reactor explodes there could be an invisible radioactive cloud that prompts hundreds of thousands of evacuations. The surrounding area would be condemned, and many would suffer from acute radiation poisoning or develop cancers years later.

Amelie Stoetzel, a PhD Student in the Department of War Studies at King’s College London, imagined a scenario where instead of an explosion there was a meltdown where radiation was released from the structures.

She told Al Jazeera that the entire continent would be at risk depending on the weather and which way the wind was blowing.

The Trends Journal has long said that with each day that goes by, the world takes one step closer to a catastrophic development in the Ukraine War. Our 8 March cover ran the headline: “NEGOTIATE FOR PEACE OR REST IN PEACE.” 

Since the war broke out, there have been no calls for peace and the Western media has become nothing more than the press arm of Washington, and despite nearly unlimited support from the West to keep bloodying the killing fields, Ukraine continues to lose ground to Russia.

The Washington Post, citing analysis by SecDev, a data firm, reported that Russia now controls about $12.4 trillion in Ukrainian natural resources. The report said Russia controls about 63 percent of Ukraine’s coal deposits, 11 percent of its oil, 20 percent of its natural gas, 42 percent of its metals, and 33 percent of its rare earth material.

The report said Ukraine has some of the world’s largest deposits of titanium, iron ore, lithium, and coal. Moscow has seized 63 percent of Ukraine’s coal deposits and 11 percent of its oil deposits.  

There are reports that Russia was spending about $900 million per day during the Ukraine War as of June, so if that rate continued, Moscow has spent a total of $32 billion on the conflict… which, as we note, is about half of what the U.S. has sent to Ukraine since the war began on 24 February.

TRENDPOST: Why did Russia attack Ukraine?

In his Victory Parade speech in Moscow yesterday, Russian President Vladimir Putin said, “We saw how the military infrastructure was unfolding, how hundreds of foreign advisers had begun to work there, with the most modern weapons being regularly delivered from NATO countries. The danger was growing every day. Russia offered a pre-emptive rebuff to the aggression—this was a forced, timely move and the only correct decision, one taken by a strong and independent country.” 

He said, “Preparations had been underway for another punitive operation in the Donbass, an invasion of our historical lands, including Crimea,” and that the U.S. and NATO ignored Moscow, refusing to listen to the Russian Federation.

TREND FORECAST: As we have noted in Trends Journal articles going back to 30 April 2014, following the United States orchestrated overthrow of the democratically elected president of Ukraine, Victor Yanukovych, there was NO NEED FOR NATO. And that the expansion of NATO would lead to conflict with Russia. 

We wrote: “NATO has gone on too long.  The North Atlantic Treaty Organization was established on April 4, 1949, as a defensive alliance whose purpose was to defend Western Europe in the event of a Soviet invasion. As NATO’s first secretary general put it, NATO was formed in order to keep the Russians out of Western Europe and the Americans in.

“Instead of disbanding NATO when the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, Washington dramatically expanded NATO.  In violation of the Reagan-Gorbachev agreements, the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush regimes added constituent parts of the former Soviet empire to NATO—Hungary, Czech Republic, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Bulgaria and Romania. France, taken out of NATO by General de Gaulle, rejoined in April 2009, 18 years after the collapse of the Soviet Union, along with Croatia and Albania. Currently, the Obama regime is working to incorporate into NATO two former Soviet Republics—Ukraine and Georgia.”

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