PRZEWODÓW, Poland (Nettavisen) — We were scared in February, when the war started, but now it’s the new normal, Walentyn tells Nettavisen.
She runs the Sajazjd Valentino residence, about four miles from the village of Przewodów, where a rocket landed on Tuesday evening, killing two Polish men.
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Since Russia launched a full-scale invasion of neighboring Ukraine on the night of February 24 this year, the population here has been living with war close to their bodies. Walentin told Nettavisen that all the rooms had been rented out at the beginning of the war. Just over nine months later, it was the tragic incident on Tuesday night that seriously brought war to NATO territory, which once again drew the world’s attention to the border region between Poland and Ukraine.
– All rooms are booked, I have already had to turn away an Italian journalist, the hotel owner tells Nettavisen Thursday morning.
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Uncertain sequence of events
It remains uncertain exactly what happened on Tuesday night. Many were quick to blame Russia for the missile strike, and at one point it was not clear whether the incident would trigger NATO’s Article 5, which states that an attack on a member state is an attack on all. In the extreme, it could mean a full-scale war between Russia and NATO. However, military experts are clear that neither NATO nor Russia is interested in such a war, and that both sides will go to great lengths to avoid such a thing.
Małgorzata Walentyn did not hear the actual missile impact, but he realized that something special was happening. The residents of the border area heard intense air traffic.
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– We don’t have an airport nearby. I checked Flightradar, and there we could see military aircraft flying over the area, Walentin told Nettavisen.
You assume the plane was a refueling plane, and it could refuel the fighters in the air.
– I don’t know if it was the tanker plane or the fighter planes we heard, but there were two hours with a lot of air traffic from about 16:00 to 18:00, she says.
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It corresponds well with the time when news of the missile strike was published. Shortly before 8:30 Norwegian time, on Tuesday evening, the first reports came in the Norwegian media about the incident. The Associated Press spoke to US intelligence sources who can say that it was the Russian missiles that hit Polish territory.
During Wednesday night, there was complete confusion about what happened, but eventually it became clear that US President Joe Biden and NATO believed it was a Ukrainian anti-aircraft missile that crashed in Poland by accident.
It is not known exactly how this should have happened, but on Tuesday Russia carried out a massive missile and drone attack on vital infrastructure in Ukraine. The Ukrainians themselves claim to have shot down about 70 of the 90 missiles sent by the Russians. At one point, seven million Ukrainian households were without electricity, due to the Russian attacks. So it stands to reason that the missile that hit Polish territory on Tuesday was a Ukrainian anti-aircraft missile that went off course.
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It was supposedly the Soviet Union’s S300 anti-aircraft missile that hit Poland. This is a missile that both Ukraine and Russia have in their arsenals. Ukraine is using it to shoot down Russian air strikes. The Russians, for their part, are running low on precision-guided munitions, and have had to think again in order to continue attacks against targets in Ukraine.
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Part of the Russian military’s solution is to use S300 missiles to hit ground targets in Ukraine. The S300 missiles are not purpose-built and are not particularly accurate, so it also makes sense that the Russians could have been behind the missile strike.
The Russian Defense Ministry stubbornly denies it was behind it, but did the same when passenger plane MH17 was shot down in 2014. 298 people were killed, and strong evidence later emerged that Russian-backed forces were behind the downing of the plane. Today the Kremlin denies the possibility of linking them to the tragedy.
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Will investigate the scene
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky asked Ukrainian experts to examine the site where the missile fell. Zelensky himself claimed that information he received from the Ukrainian military indicated that it was not a Ukrainian anti-aircraft missile that hit Poland, killing two men.
However, on Thursday afternoon Zelenskyj made a statement that could be described as mild, saying he did not know what happened in Przewodów on Tuesday night, according to NTB.
On Thursday night, US President Joe Biden reiterated that US intelligence believes a Ukrainian anti-aircraft missile caused the tragedy. A reporter from the Reuters news agency asked Biden about the widely publicized missile that fell in Poland.
– I asked Biden about President Zelensky’s statements that the missile that fell in Poland was not Ukrainian. That’s not what the evidence says,’ Biden said, writes journalist Jeff Mason Twitteraccording to NTB.
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