Last active
7 hours, 40 minutes ago
  • Note that this is the second explicit denial of Ukrainian sovereignty by Putin (the first being the humanitarian convoy). Russians really do play chess.

    Uke soldiers who escape to Russia and are then send back to Ukieland are a problem for the junta. How many “deserters” can it prosecute? On the other hand, if it leaves them alone, others may be encouraged to resist the draft (which the NY Times reported today has just been initiated, even though it has been going on since the start of the war). If it sends these men back into battle, they will tell new conscripts what is really happening in Novorossia.

  • President of Russia Vladimir Putin addressed Novorossiya militia

    I call on the militia groups to open a humanitarian corridor for Ukrainian service members who have been surrounded, so as to avoid any needless loss of life, giving them the opportunity to leave the combat area unimpeded and reunite with their families, to return them to their mothers, wives and children, and to quickly provide medical assistance to those who were injured in the course of the military operation.

  • I know the US, too. I’m single bilingual. But I have little doubt that you know the US better than I do.

    As for the Ukraine and Ukrainians, I don’t know them at all. I just know what Russians think of them. So I “know” the US a lot better than I know the Ukraine.

    As for n’est pas: it’s не правда ли, “isn’t that true/the truth?” (ne pravda li?).

    On a completely irrelevant note, I used to think that Russian is defective because it doesn’t have articles, but I don’t believe that anymore, because Russia has been able to preserve its civilization, whereas western Europe hasn’t.

  • I’m just guessing here, but it could be that Putin and Lavrov didn’t think that the Ukrainian military would actually go through with it, because of the old Soviet idea that Ukrainians and Russians are brothers.

    I personally did not expect the Ukes to use artillery against Novorossians. And my only basis for believing that Putin and Lavrov didn’t expect that either is that I assume that the three of us think alike lol. (Also, that Lavrov was visibly shaken in that interview, IMO.)

    In retrospect, it was predictable that the junta would do this, since it is following the American way of war, which the US acquired from the Civil War and then the Indian Wars: weaken the enemy by killing his civilians and destroying his infrastructure.

  • I don’t look at BBC reports (my Unix box can only play YouTube videos, and not in a browser), but this map from Wikipedia should answer your question. According to Wikipedia, the light green area is “the maximum envisaged territorial control of Novorossiya”. (As a side note, there was a controversy at Wikipedia about whether to call Novorossiya Novorossiya or New Russia. Unsurprisingly, the pro-junta editors wanted the latter, but fortunately, they lost. I can’t decide whether the name should include a “y”, though.)

    This is a war, and Westerners are not used to having wars on their own turf. Speculation about which side will win is inevitable. A Novorossian leader said yesterday that battle spirit is 10:1 in the rebels’ favor. And now Colonel Cassad, whose blog is really the best Russian resource for understanding the war, has started dropping hints that Russia is offering substantial military aid to the freedom fighters. (Russia is just going to continue officially denying it, and both Western media and Western officials appear to have figured out this game by now and more or less resigned themselves to it.) A collapse of the Uke military may now be beginning, and if that happens, Novorossia will get the light green regions on the map. The only way it won’t is if a military deadlock develops. But remember: the Ukrainians are fighting for a lie – that there is such a thing as a Ukrainian people or nation – whereas Novorossians are fighting for their freedom and liberty.

    Because of its sorry state under Yeltsin, since the breakup of the USSR, Russia allowed the Ukraine to turn into a breeding ground for virulent Russophobia. Thus, to quote that blogger, what remains of the Ukraine needs to be turned into an “economically barren no mans land”, in order to so demoralize its residents that their rabid, mad nationalism gradually dies out.

    I think very few Russians, including Putin, believed that Kiev would launch a war against eastern Ukrainians. When the shelling began, Sergei Lavrov gave an interview to RT, and he was visibly shaken.

  • And here’s the conclusion of a blog post from the Anglosphere which may be even easier to understand:

    All these moves combined mean a few things. Firstly, it appears that although there are peace or cease fire talks ongoing, they are likely for show at best. Secondly it means that Ukraine will cease to function as a country. Its already desperate financial position will be crippled by the loss of one half of the country – the most resource rich part. Thirdly it means that Ukraine will become landlocked and essentially a new “pocket – like” area. If NATO were to move into this area, they would be surrounded on three sides by Russia, Novorossyia, and Belarus. It would be indefensible. Therefore, Ukraine, or what’s left of it, turns into an economically barren no mans land between East and West.

  • Colonel Cassad is easy to understand. (Much of the material put up at the Saker today are copy-pastes from his blog.

    Currently, we are witnessing epic and even historic events. Government army and punitive battalions are suffering a catastrophic defeat to the south of Donetsk. Even a short time ago the republics were in dire straits: the DPR was actually hanging by a thin supply thread – which the government attempted to cut near Shahtersk and Krasnyi Luch; the summit of Saur-Mogila was abandoned, and Bolotov’s counteroffensive didn’t bring decisive successes. Many thought that the self-defense militia forces were on the ropes and about to break, which would lead to the collapse of Novorossiya and military victory for the fascist junta. However, the militia managed to withstand the most severe blows, the ones junta dealt with all forces available to it, over the first half of August.

    This is a translation from Russian, but I think it is entirely comprehensible. (I did not give a link, because the English language Colonel Cassad blog gets blocked by FDL: if you link to it, your comment gets blocked. Typical American freedom of information.)

    Poroshenko’s statement was just the usual Ukrainian bloviating.

    To get back to the Saker, I haven’t seen any sitreps from “juan” lately. I never considered him to be a reliable source: we were never told anything about where he gets his information, and his English is surprisingly good for someone who was supposedly in the Ukrainian infantry.

  • For pesky, an article from the pro-junta Kyiv Post:

    “I hope it is incompetence, but on the front lines peoples are talking about betrayal,” [a Uke battalion commander] said in a press conference at the Ukraine Crisis Media Center on Aug. 27.

    For instance, Shilov said that his unit had been ordered to take the village of Pesky in Donetsk Oblast only to be ordered to abandon it, and then to take it again.

  • I still don’t think that’s a good reason to deny Ukrainians their own agency

    Ukrainians have no agency, because they are zombies enthralled by the delusion that there is such a thing as a Ukrainian nation or a Ukrainian people. There are no such things. Unfortunately, the only way to make “Ukrainians” understand that is to make them lose a war.

    And keep in mind that Kiev started this war, with prodding from USG. Eastern Ukrainians were willing to settle for federalization, but instead of giving them federalization (how can that be such a bad thing if that is what Americans and Germans have?), Kiev started killing them.

  • Putin [will] take eastern Ukraine like he did the Crimean Peninsula

    Putin is not going to “take” anything. Novorossiya belongs to Novorossiyans, not crazed fascists in Kiev and Lvov. Why don’t Americans understand the idea of self-determination any more?

  • the crisis in Ukraine – partly caused by US/EU actions

    “Partly”, DSWright? There was an equilibrium in the former Ukraine between the Russophobic west and the Russian-leaning east. Western governments didn’t like that equilibrium, so they decided to intervene in the Ukraine, by destroying the political influence in the central government of eastern regions by installing a fascist regime in Kiev.

  • Demian commented on the diary post Over Easy: Putin, Poroshenko and Merkel Meeting in Minsk by yellowsnapdragon.

    2014-08-26 18:17:10View | Delete

    There is not going to be any “political deal”. The rebels will settle for nothing less than independence.

    Here is the best Anglophone web site for keep up with the Ukrainian civil war:

    Colonel Cassad

  • Demian commented on the diary post Off course trajectory of debris field proves that MH-17 deviated 14 miles to the left by operationmindcrime.

    2014-08-23 16:22:35View | Delete

    I’m pretty sure that the “CyberBerkut leak” is black propaganda . In other words, it was fabricated by the Kiev junta and/or its sponsors in order to discredit the idea that the downing of MH17 was a botched Ukie false flag op. Even the fascist junta is not so stupid that it would plan mass murder on [...]

  • Yeah, I saw that. You’re right, that’s how.

    But that story doesn’t seem to be getting much traction. Given that the main stories right now are the shooting of Michael Brown and the ISIS threat, there isn’t much room for drumming up hysteria about Russian misdeeds.

  • Demian commented on the diary post Demand Swells for Straight Answers on Plane in Ukraine by David Swanson.

    2014-08-23 00:13:55View | Delete

    To quote the petition:

    We urge Russia and Ukraine as well as their allies and partners to engage in diplomacy and negotiations, not war and hostile alienating actions.

    Russia is not engaging in any war. The USG has triggered a civil war in the former Ukraine. I really don’t see how any informed person could sign a [...]

  • Yeah, it’s pretty bad.

    I looked at a few Anglophone news sites, and didn’t find any editorials or op-eds about Russia’s latest move. Sure, USG, the newly fascist EU, and NATO have all condemned this, but the media is apparently finding it difficult to figure out how to formulate outrage about a country supplying humanitarian aid to people on its border. National sovereignty is a pretty abstract concept, whereas people needing water and food to keep from dying is something that is easy to understand.

    The Kiev junta said it would destroy Novorossiyan forces by Ukie “independence day”, which is this Sunday. It will be interesting to see how Poroshenko presents the war situation to Ukies during the celebrations.

    The Ukrainians have been turned into hypernationalistic, Russia hating zombies by 23 years of anti-Russian propaganda paid for by the US State Department, and it appears that the only way to make Ukrainians regain a connection to reality is for them to see their society fall apart. This war is not only sending their men into a meat grinder; it is also accelerating the collapse of their economy.

  • Here’s the most disturbing video I’ve yet seen from the war. It looks like around twenty civilians were killed in Lugansk.

    18+ – Lugansk, August 13th after Ukrainian Shelling (GRAPHIC)

    Warning: most people will not want to watch this. This is what war looks like.

    Of course, Ukrainians are saying on YouTube that the rebels shelled positions that they control, in the same way that pro-federalist demonstrators in the Odessa trade union building set themselves on fire. Ukrainians have been totally zombified by their mass media.

    Western politicians and pundits are in denial when they think that the people of Novorossiya are going to be willing to live in the same country with people who do this to them.

  • How can you support a country that uses artillery and air strikes against its own people? Even the Nazis didn’t do that.

    The Kiev junta is worse than the Nazis, and yet you support it.

  • Yes, that was widely reported.

    As an aside, a remark I have seen a lot in the blogosphere lately (e.g., on MoA) is that Russians play chess, while Americans play poker. Sending in the humanitarian convoy really is like a move in chess. (This is not to say that doing so was ethically called for: there were reports that Lugansk residents had run out of water.) As the Russian ambassador to the UN Vitaliy Churkin pointed out, Kiev had agreed to the humanitarian aid: they were just stalling procedurally. So sending the aid in can’t even be viewed as a unilateral move on Russia’s part. And the ICRC had certified the contents of the convoys as humanitarian. But by sending the convoy in, Russia has indicated that the Ukraine has lost its right to sovereignty.

    The West makes humanitarian interventions by bombing cities into rubble; Russia makes such interventions by sending water, food, and medicine. Another aspect of this latest Russian move is that it is as if Russia is determining its actions in such a way that they can provide a learning experience to the Western public.

  • No. Der Spiegel article gives no indication of that.

    It expresses “wonder” that very little information has been released publicly, which is good I suppose, since the Western media is almost completely silent on MH17 now. But the report is ridiculous in a few ways. It says that if evidence indicates that MH17 was shot down by cannon fighter from a jet, then that would implicate either the former Ukraine or Russia, since the rebels don’t have an air force. But why on earth would Russia shoot down a plane over Ukrainian air space? That is just ridiculous. Also, it quotes an expert saying that cannon fire would be insufficient to disable the plane. But what some say was cannon fire was to the cockpit: would killing the pilots not disable the plane? Finally, the Spiegel “report” ends by quoting another expert who says that if a military jet were present, it would have shown up on Ukrainian and Russian radar. But this is exactly what a Russian officer said in the one press briefing that the Russian military has given on this matter: that a military plane showed up next to MH17 on civilian (ATC, non-military) radar!

    As far as the Spiegel is concerned, that press briefing never took place.

    Pretty much all governments involved know who shot the plane dawn. The problem for Western governments when it comes to what information to release is to avoid implicating the Kiev junta without getting caught in a lie.

  • Load More