Poland Wouldn't Hesitate To Occupy Parts Of Western Ukraine, Putin Claims

It appears Russian President Vladimir Putin is seeking to sow distrust among allies, in a speech Friday bringing up historical aggression that in the 20th century fractured eastern Europe, namely tit-for-tat massacres between Ukrainian and Polish nationalists during the period of the world wars.

In a new video address before his national security council, Putin said increasing cooperation between Ukraine, Poland, and Lithuania could eventually provide opportunity for Warsaw to settle past grievances by demanding and taking historically disputed territory which is now part of Ukraine.

Putin explained that Poland could in the name of the "military union" and citing the threat from Russia send troops to occupy Western Ukraine.

The Russian leader said "if we're being blunt" Poland would just take Ukraine's territory for good. "The possibility is obvious," Putin said. "If Polish troops enter, for example, Lviv or other Ukrainian territories, they will stay there, and they will stay there forever."

According to his full remarks as translated in state media...

"I cannot but comment on what has just been said [by Russian Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) Director Sergey Naryshkin] and on the press reports that have appeared about plans to create a so-called Polish-Lithuanian-Ukrainian unit. We’re not talking here about some motley crew of mercenaries - there are enough of them there [in Ukraine] already, and they are being destroyed - but rather about a regular, well-oiled, well-equipped military formation that is planned to be used for operations on the territory of Ukraine," Putin said.

"In particular [this is being done] purportedly for ensuring the security of contemporary western Ukraine, but in fact - if you call things by their proper names - for the subsequent occupation of these territories. After all, the future outlook is obvious; if Polish units enter Lvov, for example, or some other territories in Ukraine, then they will be staying put there. And they will remain there for good," he added.

Putin proceeded in the speech to give a history lesson on Poland's alleged angle of seeking Ukrainian territory but under the guise of "helping Kiev"...

"Goaded by the West, Poland took advantage of the tragedy of Russia’s Civil War to annex certain historically Russian provinces. Our country, which was then going through a difficult period, was forced to sign the Treaty of Riga in 1921 and de facto recognize the alienation of its own territories," Putin explained.

And more according to TASS:

Moreover, even before 1920, Poland seized part of Lithuania - the Vilna region, which includes modern-day Vilnius.

"Together with the Lithuanians, they [the Poles] were supposedly battling against so-called Russian imperialism, but as soon as the opportunity arose, they immediately ‘carved out’ a chunk of land from their neighbor," the Russian president noted. He further recited how, "Poland also took part in the carve-up of Czechoslovakia resulting from the Munich agreement with Hitler in 1938," completely occupying Cieszyn Silesia.

"In the 1920s and 1930s, the so-called Kresy Wschodnie of Poland [‘Eastern Borderlands’ in Polish - TASS] - and this includes the territory of western Ukraine, western Belarus and part of Lithuania - were subjected to a harsh policy of Polonization and forced assimilation of local residents, [including the] suppression of ethnic cultures and Orthodox Christianity," Putin noted.

Putin also in the same speech warned any opposing powers that threats against Belarus would be taken as threats against Russia itself, and Moscow will respond accordingly.

He said that Polish elites were "dreaming of Belarusian lands" - but he would defend Belarus, given it is part of the 'union state'. Currently Wagner mercenaries are training Belarusian troops, and Poland has in response moved to bolster its border defense units.

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