Arming Ukraine: This could lead to full-blown war with Russia As Ukrainian troops retreat ahead of Russian tanks thinly disguised as separatist rebels, the US is reconsidering military aid. But experts warn: This could lead to full-blown war. The pro-West Ukrainian government has appealed for “lethal aid” after a ceasefire negotiated late last year was cast aside by pro-Moscow separatists to launch an unexpected midwinter offensive. The Ukrainian forces are battling to repel waves of militants equipped with modern armour — many still with their Russian unit markings — trying to surround a strategic railway hub in eastern Ukraine. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has previously appealed to US legislators for military equipment: “One cannot win a war with blankets … and cannot keep the peace with blankets,” he said. President Barack Obama has now expressed his willingness to take a fresh look at supplying Ukraine with lethal aid. It’s a high-stakes move. “There is a real risk now that we will end up in a war with Russia,” said Fiona Hill, of the Brookings Center in Washington. “As far as Putin’s concerned we’re already in one, an economic and financial war, and if we start sending in weapons then we’ve taken that up a notch.” Some military strategists say the recent rebel attacks across key parts of the frontline in eastern Ukraine may have been timed precisely out of fear the United States could soon get involved. More