“Destroy the city to save it”

Older readers of this blog may remember Peter Arnett, a New Zealand-born war correspondent who worked for CNN for a long time. However, it was in the service of the Associated Press that he made himself known, notably winning the Pulitzer Prize in 1966 for his reports in Vietnam. After the Battle of Bến Tre in 1968, he received a famous statement from an American major that could eventually apply to Russian attacks against Kiev, Kharkiv and several other Ukrainian localities: “It has become necessary to destroy the city for Save her. »

The American major was referring to the Allied commanders’ decision to bombard Bến Tre without regard to civilian casualties, to rout the Vietcong. His statement was later changed and fixed in collective memory as follows: “We had to destroy the city in order to save it. »

One thing is certain: Russia did kill civilians on Monday in Kharkiv, one of the most Russian-speaking cities in Ukraine, which it claims to want to liberate. And the bombardments against Ukraine’s second city continue on Tuesday, while an imposing Russian military convoy advances towards Kiev. The media and social networks report in particular a large explosion downtown.

“Barbaric Russian missile strikes on central Freedom Square and residential area of ​​Kharkiv,” Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Koubela tweeted on Tuesday.

At least ten people were reportedly killed in these strikes, according to the Ukrainian Interior Ministry.

On Monday, Russian forces killed at least nine people in the shelling of a residential area of ​​Kharkiv, including a family of five who were cremated in their car, according to the city’s mayor, Igor Terekhov.

“It’s not just a war, it’s the murder of the Ukrainian people,” he said in a video.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky for his part accused Russia of war crimes in Kharkiv. He said 16 Ukrainian children were killed in the first four days of the Russian attack. The number of hospitals and other civilian structures being damaged or destroyed by Russian forces is also on the rise.

“Today Russian troops shelled Kharkiv using rocket artillery,” said President Zelensky in a video posted to his Facebook page late Monday. “This is, without a doubt, a military crime. A peaceful town. Peaceful residential neighborhoods. Not a single military object in sight. »

British intelligence summarizes the military situation in Ukraine as follows:

The worst is yet to come.

(Photo Reuters)

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“Destroy the city to save it”