Johnson evokes Churchill when he tells Ukraine’s parliament this is their country’s “finest hour”.


Boris Johnson is evoking Britain’s fight against Nazi Germany today, he says Ukraine‘s parliament that their country’s resistance to the Russian invasion is his “finest hour”.

The prime minister will be the first Western leader to address the Verkhovna Rada in Kyiv via video link almost two months after taking office Volodymyr Zelenskyy delivered his own message to the House of Commons.

Mr Johnson will say the UK is “proud to be among the friends of Ukraine” and will announce a new £300m package of defensive military aid including an electronic warfare kit, counter-battery radar system, GPS jammers and thousands of night vision devices.

In his live address on Tuesday, Mr Johnson will quote the words Winston Churchill In 1940, when Britain was threatened by German invasion, he called on the nation to fight back in a way that 1,000 years from now “people will still say, ‘This was their finest hour’.”

On the 69th day of the war at Downing Street, Mr Johnson will tell Ukrainian MPs: “When my country faced the threat of invasion during the Second World War, our Parliament – like yours – continued to meet with the British throughout the conflict as the people did showed such unity and determination that we remember our time of greatest peril as our finest hour.

“This is Ukraine’s finest hour, an epic chapter in your national history that will be remembered and told for generations to come.

“Their children and grandchildren will say that Ukrainians taught the world that the brute force of an attacker counts for nothing against the moral might of a people determined to be free.”

Ministers last week confirmed plans to send Brimstone missiles and Stormer air defense vehicles to Ukraine.

At the request of the Kyiv government, the UK is also to deliver heavy drones to provide logistical support to isolated forces, as well as a dozen Toyota Land Cruisers to protect officials in eastern Ukraine and evacuate civilians from frontline areas.

A report by the Tony Blair Institute today called for the creation of a joint coordination group so Western allies can help Ukraine bridge the “weapons gap” between the equipment they have and what they need to deploy Russia continues its attack on the east of the country.

An emergency response and assessment team including the US, UK, France, Germany and Ukraine could streamline the process of identifying and supplying needed weapons, rather than having President Zelenskyy go from country to country with a list of requests, he said Report.

Working closely with allies such as Poland, Turkey, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, the team would provide a one-stop shop for Ukraine’s needs that need to be met quickly and consistently, not only for delivery but also for training and maintenance of weapons.

In a foreword to the report, Justin Bronk, senior research fellow at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI), said: “The Russian army has suffered catastrophic casualties in the first two months of its invasion and has limited regular forces to spare fall back on reserves.

“If Ukraine can be adequately supplied with the necessary equipment, it can exhaust the Russian army’s capacity for offensive operations and begin retaking territory. However, it has to be a sustained effort and the best time to start was yesterday.” Johnson evokes Churchill when he tells Ukraine’s parliament this is their country’s “finest hour”.

Bobby Allyn

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