Defense chief offers Ukraine to be “testing ground” for NATO weapons
By Belle Carter // Jul 22, 2022

Ukraine's Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov on Tuesday, July 19, publicly offered Ukraine as the venue to test North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) weapons against Russia in a live webcast conversation with John Herbst, senior director of the Atlantic Council's Eurasia Center.


"Ukraine is 'essentially a testing ground' for the advanced weaponry the United States and its allies are sending to the country," he said, adding that the country is interested in testing modern systems in the fight against the enemy and encouraged arms manufacturers to test the new products in Ukraine. "Many weapons are now getting tested in the field in the real conditions of the battle against the Russian Army, which has plenty of modern systems of its own."

According to Reznikov, Ukraine is employing Western weapons like the High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems or HIMARS, Polish Krab 155mm artillery systems and shoulder-fired air-defense missiles and anti-tank guided missiles against the Russians.

He said the country is also collecting information on the performance and effectiveness of these weapons and other systems, and sharing the data with both weapons manufacturers and the nations that donated them to Ukraine.

"Some kinds of different equipment are starting in our battlefield," the Ukrainian military head said. "For example, the Polish Krab artillery systems. It is a really organic unit, but they are distinct in this Russian-Ukrainian war. So, I think for our partners in Poland, in the U.S., France or Germany, it is a good chance to test the equipment. So, give us the tools. We will finish the job, and you will have all the new information."

Powerful nations using these kinds of conflicts to test military equipment in real-world scenarios are nothing new. The U.S. military demonstrated precision-guided munitions to the world in the 1990-1991 Gulf War, while the Nazi Germany exploited the Spanish Civil War in the 1930s to test its newly developed tanks and aircraft.

The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have also seen new technologies and tactics. Russia also used Syria's civil war as a proving ground and weapons demonstration arena for export opportunities.

War in Ukraine highly beneficial to U.S. armaments makers

Most analysts commented that the war in Ukraine has been highly beneficial to U.S. armaments makers, who are making a huge amount of money by sending munitions into the war zone and refilling NATO stockpiles. (Related: Russia continues gaining ground in Ukraine as US, NATO pour in weapons to prolong the inevitable.)

Also, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has openly asked for more advanced arms than it has been receiving, including F-15 and F-16 fighter jets. But Ukrainian pilots would need to be trained to fly U.S. aircraft.

The House approved the National Defense Authorization Act that would appropriate a good $100 million to be spent for that purpose.

Illinois Rep. Adam Kinzinger told Defense News he has been in touch with Kyiv on the matter and he added that the $100 million for training as an amendment to the defense authorization bill will facilitate an eventual shift of Ukraine's military hardware away from Soviet-era technology.

"What we want to do is obviously send a message to authorize the process," Kinzinger said. "There is no doubt to me that when this war ends, Ukraine is going to have to be outfitted with western military equipment."

The Biden administration has been wary to allow sensitive U.S. technology to fall into Russian hands on the battlefield and has worried about Moscow's response should Ukrainian forces use high-end American equipment to attack Russian territory. But Kinzinger said the Ukrainians can be trusted with the equipment.

"They've been clear and they have shown this with the weapons they have. They are not trying to start a war with Russia inside of Russia," said Kinzinger. "They just want to defend their homeland."

He noted the U.S. military is ready to start training Ukrainian pilots at Columbus Air Force Base in Mississippi and possibly in Texas. It would take about three months to train the pilots to fly the fighter jets at a basic level.

The Senate is not expected to vote on its version of the defense authorization bill until September at the earliest, then both chambers must agree on compromise legislation in the conference committee. Should Kinzinger's amendment gets approved at the conference, the U.S. could be training Ukrainian pilots in the country as early as next year.

Analysts could not help but criticize the Biden administration for spending much on the war, despite the worsening financial situation of the country.

Visit for more news related to the Russia-Ukraine war.

Watch the below video that talks about Ukraine being the testing ground for western weapons.

This video is from The Prisoner channel on

More related stories:

Proxy war: Ukraine bombs Russian "arms depot" using US missiles.

Miami police try, fail to explain how it's legal for their department to ship guns to Ukraine.

Putin: If the US gives missiles to Ukraine, Russia will strike new targets.

ARMING CRIMINALS: American weapons sent to Ukraine are ending up for sale on dark web.

Russia deploys unknown munition in Ukraine, baffling western military experts.

Sources include:

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