Ukraine to Double Military Budget, Conscript 40,000 for Eastern War

Ceasefire Holding, But Not for Long

Ukraine’s ceasefire with eastern rebels has been holding for quite some time, and even President Poroshenko now says it’s “real.” That would ruin Ukraine’s anti-Russia rhetoric if it holds, and Ukrainian policy is being drawn up to see it doesn’t.

The defense ministry today laid out plans to double the size of Ukraine’s military budget to $3.2 billion, and intends to conscript some 40,000 men into the military to fight against the eastern rebels.

All of this is in spite of a ceasefire that is holding in the east, and officials claiming to have plans to settle the conflict peacefully. Instead, they’re looking to blow up their budget on war spending.

What’s unclear is where Ukraine will actually get the additional $1.5 billion to spend on its war, as the nation is perpetually on the verge of bankruptcy and courting Western bailouts. Though NATO members have been eager to use the Ukraine war as an excuse to escalate their own military spending, it’s hard to imagine they’ll be willing to bankroll Ukraine’s war so directly.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.