No matter how the war ends in the Donbas, Ukraine should expect a surge of terrorism. The explosions in the Poltava gas pipeline and the railroad bridge in the Zaporizhia oblasts are only the beginning. If necessary steps are not taken, subsequent terrorist attacks could have much more tragic consequences.
The terrorist attack last night at the railroad bridge in Orikhiv in the Zaporizhia Oblast, once again demonstrated that despite the truce announced by the terrorists of DPR (Donetsk People’s Republic) and LPR (Luhansk People’s Republic), they are completely prepared to continue expanding the mayhem. Where they failed to establish direct control over territory, they will resort to acts of terror, destroying infrastructure and bringing uncertainty and fear into the lives of ordinary people.
Unfortunately, Ukraine is doomed to confront terrorism even after the war in the Donbas no matter how the war ends. Furthermore, likely terrorist targets may include not only the southeast, but any city in the center or the west of the country. Similarly, there is no doubt that Russia will continue to support the terrorists. After all, Putin has repeatedly shown that he, more than anyone, is interested in maximum destabilization in Ukraine.
During its 23-year history, Ukraine has not yet seriously faced the threat of terrorism. This is why it is impossible to talk about the readiness of the security services to counteract the new “Orthodox bombers.” Therefore, law enforcement will have to devote considerable resources to negate the efforts of the terrorists.
The former head of the Internal Security Service in the Donetsk Oblast, Lieutenant General Oleksandr Skipalskyy shares these concerns. “The likelihood of terrorism in Ukraine should have been foreseen from the first day of Russia’s aggression in Crimea. I predict that after the war in the Donbas, terrorist acts will be carried out in Ukraine. If the event of Russia’s victory, they (terrorist acts) will support the scenario for creating a new empire that includes parts of Ukraine; in case of defeat, these will be acts of retaliation and manifestations of hostility by the dissatisfied,” he said.
Skipalskyy is convinced the terrorist attacks that have already taken place “are not an accident but only a small part of a larger plan.” There were “undoubtedly instances that we overlooked — downed planes, helicopter clashes and so on. The enemies of Ukraine will do everything to create sabotage and terrorism in the country,” he said.
According to the general, in order to prevent future terrorist attacks in Ukraine, it is necessary to “calmly but consistently implement an ideology of war, which, Ukraine, unfortunately, has failed to do from the beginning.”
“The government, the interim president, and the newly elected president, do not see or fully comprehend the challenges facing Ukraine. First of all, it is necessary to work with citizens on the ideological front, and that’s an entire bloc. This (effort) should begin at the student’s desk. Thank God that so far the terrorist attacks are designed to destroy communications. Just think how many bridges have already been blown up. However, sooner or later the attacks will move to living quarters, and as a result people may suffer. This is why vigilance and theoretical explanations are necessary, ” he said.
The second direction for counter terrorism, in his view, is work with the security system so that “both the security agencies and the entire system work together for the safety of the country. The president needs to devote very serious attention to raising the level of staffing — to bring in competent professionals, experienced people who know how to do this,” he said.
A very serious problem in the context of the war with terrorism remains the dominance of a great number of Kremlin agents in Ukrainian ranks. The fact that during the Yanukovych era, Ukrainian special services were systematically destroyed and the agents were actively recruited to the Kremlin side hasn’t been a secret for anyone for some time. Most of the double agents have not gone away and are currently continuing their subversive activities. Almost daily there is information on another data “leak” to the enemy on ATO (antiterrorist) operations.
Skipalskyy says that in addition to cleaning out (Ukrainian) ranks, it is equally important to create our own agents among the enemy.
“The penetration activity — both intelligence and counterintelligence — must be so powerful that we absolutely must have information on those agencies that deal with terrorism. If we do not have enough astuteness and ability to penetrate enemy organizations and obtain information from there, we will not be able to defeat terrorism successfully, ” he concluded.
By Taras Klochko, Espreso TV, June 24, 2014
Translated from Ukrainian by Anna Mostovych