Critics of the massive US weapons pipeline to Ukraine have long pointed out there’s no accountability or appropriate tracking once those arms enter the country, presenting ripe opportunities for criminals, terrorists, or lucrative black market arms sellers to take advantage.
So it was perhaps only a matter of time before headlines like this began showing up in international publications – “NBI: Arms sent to Ukraine in criminal hands.” The NBI is Finland’s federal National Bureau of Investigation, and the report is from Finland’s national public broadcasting company Yle, and provides confirmation that arms intended for Ukrainian forces are going outside the country.
The recovered weapons featured in the weekend national police statement include assault rifles which were meant for Ukrainian forces. Further neighboring countries have recorded instances of West-provided arms proliferating from the Ukrainian battlefield and into the hands of criminals in neighboring Sweden and Denmark as well.
“Weapons shipped [by various countries] to Ukraine have also been found in Sweden, Denmark and the Netherlands,” NBI Detective Superintendent Christer Ahlgren was quoted in the Finnish publication as saying.
“We’ve seen signs of these weapons already finding their way to Finland,” Ahlgren added. Some of this illicit arms trafficking is being brokered in online forums frequented by criminal gangs. According to more from the NBI lead investigator:
“Three of the world’s largest motorcycle gangs—that are part of larger international organizations—are active in Finland. One of these is Bandidos MC, which has a unit in every major Ukrainian city,” he explained. “We know that contacts and routes are being warmed up, so that they’re in place.”
“Ukraine has received a large volume of weapons and that’s good, but we’re going to be dealing with these arms for decades and pay the price here,” Ahlgren added.
“Criminal organizations have their networks in Finnish commercial ports. Stopping this is in everyone’s interest,” the detective continued, underscoring that police work and investigations have been greatly ramped up since the start of the Ukraine war, especially when it comes to monitoring the nation’s points and ports of entry. He declined to provide a detailed list of the types of arms which have made their way into Finland, however.
Washington and NATO countries have over the past eight months since the Russian invasion began pumped tens of billions of dollars in light and heavy weaponry into Ukraine. From the start, Pentagon officials as well as media pundits have warned of the likelihood that many of these weapons would end up outside of Ukraine.
#NATO funnels weapons into a 'black hole' in #Ukraine as #German troops again gather on the borders of #Russia. Excerpt from a withdrawn @CBS doco which carried an estimate that only 30% of NATO weapons arrive at their destination. Full doco here: https://t.co/B9PEDRhsNg pic.twitter.com/HSUk2S11CR
— tim anderson (@timand2037) August 12, 2022
All the way back in April, one White House official even warned in speaking to CNN, “we have fidelity for a short time, but when it enters the fog of war, we have almost zero. It drops into a big black hole, and you have almost no sense of it at all after a short period of time.”
The question remains, who could have seen this coming? The answer is everyone with common sense.