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Thread: Ukraine (closed; covers till August 2014)

  1. #281
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    If those letters are true, then something must be done with your military education system . If this is fake, it reminds me this kind of activity.

    https://www.cia.gov/library/center-f...0USA-17Dec.pdf

    Thanks for the links to 20committee site, that gave me hints about this clever method!

  2. #282
    Council Member Firn's Avatar
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    @kaur: Sadly I do not speak Russian. Not mastering on of the Slavic languages is something I regret, I really should have taken those Russian university courses. I got a bit into Slovak for personal reasons, but I didn't progress much.

    @AmericanPride: Corruption is indeed a plague infesting the whole country throughout most layers. On the political one I'm pretty sure that within the black to white spectrum of that cancer the gray is a lot darker for the guy around the ex-president, but I obviously don't have the stats to prove it right now. Maybe apart from the amazingly expensive palasts he built.

    Overall I would not be surprised if the new government does paint the picture of the Ukrainian economy in the grimmest of colours and puts the € billions needed even over the upper estimates. That might play well an secure as much billions of foreign loans as possible. The story of the only 6000 combat-ready soldiers seems to work in the same way.

    This doesn't of course mean that both the economy and military aren't in a terrible mess.

    @kaur again: This one does obviously fail Occam's Razor and plausibility. I mean the enemy has invaded and occupied a part of your guaranteed and undisputed territory and now there is suddendly the desperate need to trigger a conflict against that very invader by wild fabrications?

    If spread by the Kremlin it looks as much other stuff to be about further brain-washing the people back home. Poor guys.
    Last edited by Firn; 03-12-2014 at 10:52 PM.
    ... "We need officers capable of following systematically the path of logical argument to its conclusion, with disciplined intellect, strong in character and nerve to execute what the intellect dictates"

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    Speech at the Kriegsakademie, 1935

  3. #283
    Council Member carl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Firn View Post
    On the political one I'm pretty sure that within the black to white spectrum of that cancer the gray is a lot darker for the guy around the ex-president...
    Firn:

    That is very finely written. I am officially jealous.
    "We fight, get beat, rise, and fight again." Gen. Nathanael Greene

  4. #284
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    On the link is a table of force strength and equipment (excl. naval assets):http://www.iiss.org/en/militarybalan...60DA63A360E839

    IISS also have an article reviewing the military dimensions, now a week old:https://www.iiss.org/en/militarybala...-military-0218
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 03-13-2014 at 06:53 PM.
    davidbfpo

  5. #285
    Council Member Firn's Avatar
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    Quite early I wrote about the danger that the Ukrainian banks in the Crimea could run dry without a rapid reaction by the seperatists. We will see, but you know that there is no big confidence if you see scenes like that:





    It is quite a murky business, with rumours of a complete nationalization of the Crimean banks going around. What seems quite certain that the withdraw limits per person per day have been pushed down again. All this insecurity is of course bad for business and the economy.



    The big management problems, all that KGB stuff and the disregard for an economic fallout really seem to support the informations which indicated that only a small circle, mostly ex-KGB, was involved in the initial decision makings.
    Last edited by Firn; 03-13-2014 at 09:51 PM.
    ... "We need officers capable of following systematically the path of logical argument to its conclusion, with disciplined intellect, strong in character and nerve to execute what the intellect dictates"

    General Ludwig Beck (1880-1944);
    Speech at the Kriegsakademie, 1935

  6. #286
    Council Member Firn's Avatar
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    Just took a quick look at twitter:


    Myroslava Petsa ‏@myroslavapetsa 48 Min.

    In Donetsk, pro-Russian thugs attacked pro-Ukrainian demonstrators. 1 killed, 10 hospitalized. Pic via @euromaidan pic.twitter.com/RW6PyftLOJ
    Maxim Eristavi ‏@MaximEristavi 2 Min.

    2 confirmed deaths in Donetsk clashes tonight, 3 ppl are critically injured, up to 50 hurt - @no
    vostidnua
    We can of course not know the dynamics of the violence. I just hope that it isn't related to the concentration of Russian troops accross the Eastern border. Russian Russians playing agent provocateur would be nothing new and with all those Soviet playbooks in full force one can sadly rule out little...
    Last edited by Firn; 03-13-2014 at 09:46 PM.
    ... "We need officers capable of following systematically the path of logical argument to its conclusion, with disciplined intellect, strong in character and nerve to execute what the intellect dictates"

    General Ludwig Beck (1880-1944);
    Speech at the Kriegsakademie, 1935

  7. #287
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Sadly there is some irony, possibly not the best adjective here, that the first post-Maidan death in the Ukraine is of a pro-Ukraine protestor in Donetsk, reportedly at the hands of a rival pro-Russian protest.

    More on this commentary:http://www.interpretermag.com/ukrain...ar-the-border/
    davidbfpo

  8. #288
    Council Member Firn's Avatar
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    The video shows Russians with the accents of those from the Russian Federation, not Ukraine, attacking a group of pro-EuroMaidan activists. They shout “Russia! Russia!” and “Where is your Ukraine?!”. Using one of the worst insults in the region, they cry “Pederasts! Pederasts!” and then “On your knees! On your knees!” in a constant chant.

    The EuroMaidan activists link arms in a tight circle and try to dodge flash grenades and mace spray, then riot police encircle them with arms linked, while a policeman radios a report that 10 people have been injured. The EuroMaidan demonstrators try to take cover near a bus that is already packed with people.

    Somehow, the Russian rioters get around the riot police cordon, and start cracking heads with iron rods or bats.
    1) In Italy the type of accent gives you good understanding where a guy comes from. This is of course more granular in you neighbourhood even if it is no longer as distinctive as in the past.* I don't know how precise this is in Russian, but it sounds very likely that it is possible to tell if somebody comes from longer across the border.

    2) A (very) large amount of Russian provocateurs among the violent fits past patters with Russian passport holders coming as violent 'tourists' or for specatacular actoins and the overall 'KGB' approach of Putins circle.

    3) In this case it looks like a planned violent counter-demostration, attacking a largely unprepared crowd. It is difficult to know to which extent this attack did 'just' get out of control.


    All in all it is of course of great importance for the stability of the Urkaine to stop the large amount of violent provocateurs from entering the country. I guess that they arm themselves mostly with the help of seperatists, partly payed, forces within the country. It looks like that Putin wants to do it's own little maidans. His problem is of course once again that the protesters in Kyiv were overwhelmingly Ukrainian citiziens which came freely due to their own will. Poor Putin himself has to pay and bus in a large share of the 'Ukrainian' protestors from Russia.

    *An somewhat fitting example in a violent context was the deep shock felt, still plain after fifty years, when a survivor of a German-led massacre in Italy heard one of the masked men insulting his victims in the accent of the neighbourhood.
    ... "We need officers capable of following systematically the path of logical argument to its conclusion, with disciplined intellect, strong in character and nerve to execute what the intellect dictates"

    General Ludwig Beck (1880-1944);
    Speech at the Kriegsakademie, 1935

  9. #289
    Council Member mirhond's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carl View Post
    Mirhond:

    If you guys are going to troll here as "Mirhond" work a little harder and have just one person do the trolling. When you switch off the quality of the written English and the sentence construction is wildly variable. Have a little respect for us and at least try to make it look good.
    Total and complete offtop

    You made my day! It is the best compliment about my English i've ever heard in my entire life!

    I can give you my Skype contact, so you can personally evaluate how crappy my spoken English is, written is just slightly better. Really, do it, send me a PM. Presupposing that you value your beliefs more than reality, I give a 15% a priori probability you'll do this.
    Besides, I am not trolling, just plaing a legitimate role of devil's advocate.

    ps. Sorry for offtop, the temptation was irresistible.
    Last edited by mirhond; 03-14-2014 at 10:57 AM.

  10. #290
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    Interesting to see what happens in London today.

    The US attempts to rally its 'friends' - the same ones Nuland referred to as: "F**k the EU"

    Hard to see a face saving way out for the Russians.

    I think the Ukrainians should repudiate the military use of facilities in Crimea treaty with Russia due to the invasion. That should stir it up nicely


    Quote Originally Posted by Firn View Post
    1) In Italy the type of accent gives you good understanding where a guy comes from. This is of course more granular in you neighbourhood even if it is no longer as distinctive as in the past.* I don't know how precise this is in Russian, but it sounds very likely that it is possible to tell if somebody comes from longer across the border.

    2) A (very) large amount of Russian provocateurs among the violent fits past patters with Russian passport holders coming as violent 'tourists' or for specatacular actoins and the overall 'KGB' approach of Putins circle.

    3) In this case it looks like a planned violent counter-demostration, attacking a largely unprepared crowd. It is difficult to know to which extent this attack did 'just' get out of control.


    All in all it is of course of great importance for the stability of the Urkaine to stop the large amount of violent provocateurs from entering the country. I guess that they arm themselves mostly with the help of seperatists, partly payed, forces within the country. It looks like that Putin wants to do it's own little maidans. His problem is of course once again that the protesters in Kyiv were overwhelmingly Ukrainian citiziens which came freely due to their own will. Poor Putin himself has to pay and bus in a large share of the 'Ukrainian' protestors from Russia.

    *An somewhat fitting example in a violent context was the deep shock felt, still plain after fifty years, when a survivor of a German-led massacre in Italy heard one of the masked men insulting his victims in the accent of the neighbourhood.

  11. #291
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    Default All the *ucks Lined Up, or Wishful Thinking

    Here's a headline from the Washington Examiner, John Kerry: Russia has until Monday to reverse course in Ukraine (by Susan Crabtree, MARCH 13, 2014):

    Secretary of State John Kerry warned of serious repercussions for Russia on Monday if last-ditch talks over the weekend to resolve the crisis in Ukraine failed to persuade Moscow to soften its stance.

    Kerry will travel to London for a Friday meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov ahead of a Sunday referendum vote in the Crimea region to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation.

    U.S. and European officials argue that Moscow is orchestrating the referendum and waging an intimidation campaign with thousands of Russian troops controlling the region. If Russian-backed lawmakers in Crimea go through with the Sunday referendum, Kerry said the U.S. and its European allies will not recognize it as legitimate under international law.

    The U.S. and Europe on Monday would then unite to impose sanctions on Russia, Kerry told a Senate Appropriations subcommittee Thursday during a hearing on the State Department's budget. ...
    Also, an interesting back and forth with Lindsay Graham (Kerry: "...“we have contingencies – we are talking through various options that may or may not be available.”).

    Back to Mr Kerry's ultimatum, where the real sanctioning party is not the US (it doesn't have that much trade with Russia), but the EU which does - and which also will be the party taking the negative effects of the sanctions.

    So, does Mr Kerry have all of his EU ducks lined up in a row for Monday, or is he wishful thinking and in effect bluffing ?

    Regards

    Mike

  12. #292
    Council Member Firn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jmm99 View Post
    Back to Mr Kerry's ultimatum, where the real sanctioning party is not the US (it doesn't have that much trade with Russia), but the EU which does - and which also will be the party taking the negative effects of the sanctions.

    So, does Mr Kerry have all of his EU ducks lined up in a row for Monday, or is he wishful thinking and in effect bluffing ?

    Regards

    Mike
    There are two important points:

    1) I'm pretty sure that the EU will step up the sanctions, especially after the words and actions of Merkel and her FM. Germany is the big country which will suffer the most from an sanctions battle, but from what I have gathered they know that Russia will suffer far more then they and the EU as a whole. The actions of Putin have been overall a couple of steps too far to just go ahead with the daily business. Of course we have to see.

    2) For all the harder talk out of the US (republicans) the financial support from the USA to Ukraine has been far inferior to the EU. Yes I know that there should come 3? bn from the IMF, and I believe that the EU has a greater vested interest but the 1 bn is just a fraction of the EU up to 15 bn $. As Mike rightly pointed out the EU will bear the brunt of a sanction war so a more equally shared monetary burden would be rather welcome. Stabilizing and supporting Urkaine politically, financially and economically should have priority. The US gov can cheaply loan and lend money, and hopefully I won't have to write-off much.

    More direct military support by armaments and more should not be ruled out but for now much help for Urkaine and tougher sanctions for Russia seems to be the right approach.


    P.S: Personally I think that the pictures of the British documents showing that the wanted to keep the City as protected as possible should have resulted in an diplomatic cost.
    Last edited by Firn; 03-14-2014 at 01:03 PM.
    ... "We need officers capable of following systematically the path of logical argument to its conclusion, with disciplined intellect, strong in character and nerve to execute what the intellect dictates"

    General Ludwig Beck (1880-1944);
    Speech at the Kriegsakademie, 1935

  13. #293
    Council Member Firn's Avatar
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    More informations about the way the Kremlin has icreasingly assumed control over the relevant media, translated by Pierre Vaux and orginially posted on Lentu.ru:

    Today, the 12th of March, the owner of the Afisha-Rambler-SUP company, Aleksandr Mamut sacked the editor-in-chief of Lenta.ru, Galina Timchenko. Alexei Goreslavskiy, the deputy director-general for external communications, has been made the new editor-in-chief.

    Unfortunately, this is not a staff reshuffle, so it needs some explanation. We believe that this reassignment represents direct pressure on the editorial office of Lenta.ru. The dismissal of an independent editor-in-chief, and the direct orchestration of the reassignment of someone from the Kremlin cabinet, is a violation of the law on media, which discusses the inadmissibility of censorship.

    Over the last couple of years, the space for free journalism in Russia has shrunk dramatically. Some publications are directly controlled by the Kremlin, some through supervisors, and others by editors who are afraid of losing their jobs. Some media oulets have closed, others will be closing in the coming months. The disaster is not that we have nowhere to work. The disaster is that it looks like you have no more to read.

    We certainly expected them to come for us.

    We don’t believe this will last forever. In any case, you, our dear readers, should know about it.

    We hope that we’ll meet again soon.

    Your dear editors.
    This has of course allowed the Kremlin to increasingly control what the great majority sees and hears and allows them to use massive propaganda to brainwash them. If you throw vast quantities of mud around the clock from all sides, something will stick.

    On a different note the European political non-opponents seem to be in simplistic terms either on the far right or the far left. The first because they love to hate the EU and the second because the do the same with the USA.
    ... "We need officers capable of following systematically the path of logical argument to its conclusion, with disciplined intellect, strong in character and nerve to execute what the intellect dictates"

    General Ludwig Beck (1880-1944);
    Speech at the Kriegsakademie, 1935

  14. #294
    Council Member mirhond's Avatar
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    @Firn

    Sadly this is just the acceleration of a long term trend in which more and more power within Russia gets centralized and concentrated. The 'Russian Federation' seems increasingly to be so only in name.

    Legalistic fallacy. New rules and regulations don't nessesarily mean the actual grouth of Putin's power and influence. He may exploit it or may not, lots of hidden variables behind this. Recent "dictatorship laws" didn't help Yanukovich to stay in power, as you remember.
    You are right about "Federation" - this part of the term is meaningless, sad but true.
    Last edited by mirhond; 03-14-2014 at 01:44 PM.

  15. #295
    Council Member AmericanPride's Avatar
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    I'm skeptical about the efficacy and sustainability of any sanctions regime against Russia. Given the size of and structure of Russia's economy, sanctions are really small ball tactics at this point; and frankly, nobody thinks Crimea or Ukraine are worth risking torpedoing the global economy as it still slowly distances itself from the recession. Normalization of relations between Europe and Russia is a political necessity that will return in the near future. What this really demonstrates is that despite all the hype about soft power, smart power, et al, at the end of the day hard power is what creates facts on the ground and drives decision-making. Whatever the merit of Moscow's justifications and actions, there's no option of sufficient force to alter their course other than war.
    When I am weaker than you, I ask you for freedom because that is according to your principles; when I am stronger than you, I take away your freedom because that is according to my principles. - Louis Veuillot

  16. #296
    Council Member carl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mirhond View Post
    Total and complete offtop

    You made my day! It is the best compliment about my English i've ever heard in my entire life!

    I can give you my Skype contact, so you can personally evaluate how crappy my spoken English is, written is just slightly better. Really, do it, send me a PM. Presupposing that you value your beliefs more than reality, I give a 15% a priori probability you'll do this.
    Besides, I am not trolling, just plaing a legitimate role of devil's advocate.

    ps. Sorry for offtop, the temptation was irresistible.
    Glad to see you guys have upped your game and put one of your better guys on this as this and your next post show. I feel better now.
    "We fight, get beat, rise, and fight again." Gen. Nathanael Greene

  17. #297
    Council Member carl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AmericanPride View Post
    I'm skeptical about the efficacy and sustainability of any sanctions regime against Russia. Given the size of and structure of Russia's economy, sanctions are really small ball tactics at this point; and frankly, nobody thinks Crimea or Ukraine are worth risking torpedoing the global economy as it still slowly distances itself from the recession. Normalization of relations between Europe and Russia is a political necessity that will return in the near future. What this really demonstrates is that despite all the hype about soft power, smart power, et al, at the end of the day hard power is what creates facts on the ground and drives decision-making. Whatever the merit of Moscow's justifications and actions, there's no option of sufficient force to alter their course other than war.
    I don't think the Poles will agree that it is isn't worth risking economic disruption if Russia moves into the Ukraine north of Crimea. They may just upset the group comity.
    "We fight, get beat, rise, and fight again." Gen. Nathanael Greene

  18. #298
    Council Member mirhond's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carl View Post
    Glad to see you guys have upped your game and put one of your better guys on this as this and your next post show. I feel better now.
    Well, I gave you a tool to verify your statement, you failed to use it. Here is another one - ask admins to check my IP. But I'am sure you are not going to use it, because you are happy with your belief in "misteriuos guys behind the user".
    I have a scientific explanation - you just never met a non-native English user with huge gaps in grammar and syntax. Nice to meet you - I'am such kind of a person, I've never studied English properly, so I dont bother with this stuff.
    Anyway, enjoy your confirmation bias and false beliefs.

    ps. Video especially for you, "right people" beat and humiliate "wrong people"
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?featur...&v=afrXa-qsLfo

    pps. Communists are gone, enjoy your Nazism.
    Last edited by mirhond; 03-14-2014 at 02:53 PM.

  19. #299
    Council Member carl's Avatar
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    Mirhond:

    Fascinating. No subtlety at all. Fascinating.
    "We fight, get beat, rise, and fight again." Gen. Nathanael Greene

  20. #300
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    Quote Originally Posted by mirhond View Post
    Communists are gone, enjoy your Nazism.
    It's not an either or choice. Who needs either?
    Last edited by JMA; 03-14-2014 at 03:40 PM.

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