The Somewhat Phony, But Still Bloody War In The Donbass – TTG

Givi_knocks.001

The frontline between the Ukrainian Army and the Novorossiyan Army has been static since the imposition of a truce after the signing of the Minsk-2 protocols in February 2015. That does not mean it’s been quiet. The Minsk-2 protocols called for the removal of heavy weapons from the front lines. That was happening, but now both sides are moving many of these weapons back to the front. I've been waiting for months for this sitzkrieg to boil over into something more dynamic. The fighting has been almost constant with mortar/artillery duels and small arms battles daily. This British Channel 4 News video and these sound recordings of fighting at Avdeevka and Peski paint a good picture of fighting in the Donbass.

Many of the Ukrainian bombardments still target civilian areas. Some things never change. However, the civilian infrastructure and the situation of the people of Novorossiya seems to be slowly improving since the imposition of Minsk-2. New housing is being built and old housing is being repaired. New shopping centers are opening and there are goods on the shelves. Agricultural production is now higher than before the Maidan coup. On the other hand, things for the Ukrainians seem to be getting worse each day. I keep thinking something's going to give any day, but it never does. I'm still waiting for it to blow up one way or another.

Kiev is still adamant that they have been fighting the Russian Army from the start. U.S. and various NATO mouthpieces have echoed this line without question. I haven’t heard any U.S. Intelligence source make such a claim. I believe a few have said just the opposite, but those reports were quickly stifled by the Borg media. I seriously doubt there are any Russian conventional units in the Donbass or ever have been. I've seen no convincing evidence of Russian troops in the area. Although I have seen no proof of it, I would imagine that some Russian Spetsnaz recon teams were in Ukraine and may still be there using Novorossiyan rebel cover.

We've seen what the Russians can do with a Syrian Army on brink of defeat. I have no doubt they can do more with an advising, training and equipping strategy with the ethnic Russians, most with Russian military training, on their own border. Syria was proof that the Russians are damned good at this. And it adds to my conviction that no Russian troop units are in Novorossiya. The Russians have continued to train and advise the Novorossiyan forces over the past year. Reorganization efforts are concentrating on forming battalion tactical groups (BTG) on the Russian model. These BTGs are capable of independent action as well as operating as part of larger brigade formations. They seem to have a higher ratio of fire support to maneuver elements than our  battalion task forces. I am impressed by this concept. This “South Front“ article from last August describes some of the other changes occurring in Novorossiya’s Army.

Russian_Battalion_Tactical_Group

Where will all this lead? Will full scale fighting erupt again? That vile, neo-nazi cabal in Kiev may yet collapse. Yesterday’s Dutch referendum “no” vote on the EU association treaty with Ukraine may hasten that collapse. If a collapse is imminent, I can see Kiev launching an all out assault on the rebels in desperation. If that happens, I believe Putin will continue to support the Novorossiyan defense, although that support will not extend to marching on Kiev. Putin still prefers a political solution.

Givi-kiev

If Kiev does feel froggy enough to jump, I believe they will have their neo-nazi asses handed to them by the Novorossiyan forces. This time, I doubt Kiev will be saved by a Minsk-3 agreement. The lead photo is of Lieutenant Colonel Mikhail Tolstykh, AKA Givi, commander of the DNR Somali Battalion having a heated philisophical discussion (some called it torture) with the commander of the Ukrainian 93rd Guards Mechanized Brigade, Colonel Oleg Mikats on the occasion of his capture by Givi at the Donetsk Airport in January 2015. Mikats was also a ranking Pravy Sektor member. I found the quote from “Breaking Bad” to be most appropriate. If Kiev attacks, they will discover that it will be Givi and his fellow rebels who will be knocking.

TTG

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70 Responses to The Somewhat Phony, But Still Bloody War In The Donbass – TTG

  1. johnf says:

    A Dutch referendum on whether the EU should abolish its trade barriers with the Ukraine has been defeated by 61% to 39%, 32% of Dutch voters taking part in the vote. This should trigger a move by the government to reject this EU agreement. Unanimity is required by EU governments to implement such agreements, but the Dutch government will probably find a way to wriggle its way out of this embarassment.
    But it does show that the average EU citizens does not necessarily back The West’s hawkish position on the Ukraine, and has not been unduly influenced by the continual propaganda attacks on Putin. And remember that the Dutch particularly, after the shooting down of the airliner, should have reason to back Ukraine against Russia.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-35976086

  2. wabuno says:

    Careful. The overthrow was Feb. 21 or 22 in 2014 I think. Perhaps you’re just behind a year in your dating. Donetsk airport wasn’t a bombed out ruin in early 2014. I only mention this because the servants to power will pounce. A small flub by an individual that doesn’t have ‘fact checking’ interns at their disposal doesn’t negate the message. An ironic word is disposal in this case.
    Fine work TTG. Thanks.
    Givi, Motorola, and many more deserve respect aplenty.
    All ought to search on YT “roses have thorns” an excellent collage of the vast amounts of video hours dumped-up to the WWW in real time during the Donbass conflict. Deep cellphone penetration in this country. An Aussie I think is the compiler. Perhaps a grasp if the Cyrillic alphabet and Russian language capabilities were used to compile this sad, angering but compelling compilation.

  3. Barish says:

    The two dates are off by a year, February 2015* and January 2015*. One year before then the “ATO” wasn’t yet on, nor announced even.
    Regarding the referendum, keep in mind that the EU has a record of various referenda which it either had re-done to get the “right” result or which it ignored outright. Yes, I am somewhat unconvinced that the EU-leadership over here will see sense even now.

  4. Ghost ship says:

    “Yesterday’s Dutch referendum “no” vote on the EU association treaty with Ukraine may hasten that collapse.”
    The Mossack Fonseca papers also mention President Porochenko (although you’d be hard put to notice given the references to Putin who is not mentioned at all) whereas I’ve seen no claim that ex-President Yanukvych is mentioned. So the United States replaced a democratically-elected corrupt politician with a less democratically-elected, more corrupt politician. Will we now see the return of the Maidan protesters and another putsch?

  5. Thanks TTG for the update. Your flower post on Facebook amazing.
    Can we summarize the Ukraine fighting now as risking death for your favorite oligarch?

  6. Haralambos says:

    Barish and Ghost ship: this is up in my mail today from the “Brussels Briefing” on the FT: https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#inbox/153ef3e56954e825
    “Dutch say No”
    “The Dutch referendum ended in a thumping defeat for advocates of the EU trade pact with Ukraine. There was a brief fluster when exit polls put turnout 1 per cent short of the 30 per cent threshold that the government have promised to recognise. But the winner was not in doubt: the No side took 61 per cent of the vote. Eurosceptics are crowing. Volkskrant can barely contain its shame. Mark Rutte, the prime minister, is playing it calm. Our man Duncan Robinson braved the poor Dutch weather and explains the implications in this Q&A. The fallout is probably manageable. But this is another bad day for the European project.”

  7. SmoothieX12 says:

    This is what I wrote more than a year ago before Debaltsevo was reduced.
    http://smoothiex12.blogspot.com/2015/02/a-brief-thought-on-fate-of-debaltsevo.html
    1. There ARE Russian advisers in Donbass and by that I mean SO people. From the get go it was clear that there was, behind (and sometimes in front) the scene, “presence” of people from GOU of General Staff too.
    2. Kiev most likely (but not 100%) will try to mount some sort of “offensive” to mitigate Poroshenko’s and junta’s humiliation in Holland referendum. There are also the news today of Trans-Karpathia calling on autonomy for itself. If confirmed–this is really a bad news for Kiev. So we may expect some sort of heightened activity.

  8. Wabuno and Barish,
    Thanks for catching the dates. I knew it was last year, but I must have forgot it is now 2016. That’s what happens when old people try to do things late at night. I fixed the post.

  9. cynic says:

    Any thoughts on why the Kievan military leadership has been so consistently inept? They came from the same Russian military background as the rebels.

  10. cynic,
    The Ukrainian military suffered from serious neglect beginning almost immediately after the breakup of the Soviet Union. Their existing equipment was sold for cash. There was no investment in training or maintenance. When the fighting started shortly after the Maidan coup, both sides had to pretty much start from scratch to build their forces. The Russians are obviously much better at building armies than the Ukrainians and their NATO allies. Then there is the moral aspect of this war.

  11. elkern says:

    What’s the story on the picture of the tank at the outskirts of Kiev?
    Looks like someone photoshopped a modern tank, some smoke, & some graffiti onto an old postcard. (shadows don’t match).
    And I need some help with the Cyrillic:
    1. does crossing out the “I” in “KNIB” change it from “Kiev” to something meaningful in Russian and/or Ukrainian? A pun?
    2. scrawled in Red on the same sign is something like “Pyccku u ropog”. The first word is obviously something about Russia or Russians; but what’s it all mean?
    Bottom line: whose propaganda is this, who is it aimed at, and what effect are they trying to have?

  12. elkern,
    It’s just a piece of rebel war art showing Givi on the outskirts of Kiev. Pure propaganda. The “i” is crossed out because that is the Ukrainian spelling as opposed to the Russian spelling of “Киев”. The remark below that means Russian city.

  13. Mark says:

    Yesterday the head of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), the outfit that toiled for a year on the Panama Papers, publicly said that the effort was not directed against Russia. He backpedaled like that although 76% of British media outlets either led with a picture of Putin or mentioned him in the story – or both – while only 24% noted the discovery that Prime Minister Cameron’s father was one of the catches. The same head of the organization, Gerard Ryle, also disclosed that no data was released on American politicians, and will not be.
    https://www.rt.com/news/338439-panama-papers-icij-leak-russia/
    It is also worth reading the brief prepared by the “No” side in the Dutch referendum – it makes the point that the agreement would be a bad deal for Ukraine, would force most small-business owners out where small business is a mainstay of the Ukrainian economy, and quotes some startling numbers.
    https://www.tni.org/files/publication-downloads/the_expected_impact_of_the_eu-ukraine_association_agreement.pdf
    The Dutch decision was in no way selfish, but you would never know from the furious and threatening commentary on Ukrainian social media.

  14. cynic says:

    Thank you. If the Kievans still haven’t learned their lesson, and attack again, whilst the rebels might have improved their ability to perform encirclements and pinch out salients; might Putin lengthen their leash to allow them to capture more of Donbass and perhaps Kharkov or that port in the south?

  15. cynic,
    I think that is a real possibility.

  16. Joe100 says:

    Cassad noted earlier this week that a second unsuccessful assassination attempt was made on Givi over the weekend. As with the first attempt, it appears to have been unprofessional (unlike “Brain’s” quite professional assassination) and seems related to Givi getting cross wise with some gangs during the heavy conflict period.
    Cassad also had a great post some time ago – I think around the ceremony when Givi and Motorola received their big awards – that showed Givi at his retail store security guard job. Amazing to see how someone like that blossomed into a real leader “under fire”..

  17. It’s a drawing of the triumphal capture of Kiev by Givi’s group. The dotted i (which is Ukrainian orthography) is crossed out — the Russian spelling is КИЕВ. The written bit is Русский город which means Russian city. I don’t know whether Givi & Co really do plan to go all the way to Kiev, but the truth is that regime change is the only good end. I believe that Putin&Co are playing the long game and expecting the Ukrainians to rise up against their current masters. But it will be a long and unpleasant trip.

  18. LondonBob says:

    Russki Gorod – Russian City.
    Киев is the Russian spelling, just crossing out the Ukrainian letter.
    Easy to forget this has gone on for two years now.
    Said it before and will say it again, accepting the ridiculous borders drawn by the communists in the FSU and former Yugoslavia guaranteed some nasty ethnic conflicts as people sought to forcibly redraw those borders to reflect ethnic reality.

  19. Fred says:

    Mark,
    ” International Consortium of Investigative Journalists …”
    Further bad news for actual journalism is are the actions being taken against the group that investigated Planned Parenthood and put out the 5 videos that show sale of fetal body parts in violation of (US) federal law. A Texas prosecutor took the issue of obtaining a business license (the journalist used the business created as a cover for the investigation) to a grand jury which brought an indictment against the two reporters for “tampering with a government document”.
    We can’t have investigative journalists researching the party in power:
    http://www.chron.com/news/houston-texas/article/Harris-grand-jury-indicts-pair-behind-Planned-6782865.php
    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2016/04/06/california-law-enforcement-officers-seize-planned-parenthood-videos-activist-says.html

  20. LeaNder says:

    I may be misguided, but I still wonder about the larger context in which the Ukraine surfaced in one of the largest scandals in the recent decades on the German scene.
    It may or may not be a piece of the puzzle to lure Ukrainians to some type of all hope West fantasy. (notice, I did not seriously reflect this sentence)

  21. ex-PFC Chuck says:

    re: “Amazing to see how someone like that blossomed into a real leader “under fire”.. ”
    Reminds me of a guy named Grant.

  22. LeaNder says:

    Fred, if I don’t want to follow your associative links or line of thought, can you give me some type of nutshell view, that led your associative line of thought?
    Basically, to summarize my view, there is by now a one-day-after help, which would as solution to the problem and rid the partisan fetus activists of much of their argument.
    Are these activists prepared to help young women, and the younger they more they are endangered to get pregnant, even more if they do not understand their body and its reactions, if they are young and and easily lured into matters?

  23. Trey N says:

    Really? Grant’s Vicksburg campaign was well-conceived and well-executed, but it was a flash in the pan. Other than that, he got his ass kicked from start to finish by the Confederates:
    At Belmont his men were routed from the field and had to run for their transports.
    He was surprised in his camp at Shiloh and only saved by the fortunate arrival of Buell’s army at the end of the first day.
    His victory at Chattanooga was again due to pure luck: his planned left hook by Sherman was stymied by Cleburne, and Thomas’ men won the day by converting their demonstration into a successful assault without orders (Grant was actually furious when he saw the bluecoats charging up the mountainside, and demanded to know who had ordered the attack!).
    Lee successfully countered every move by Grant in the Overland Campaign, and capped it off by absolutely slaughtering the Union troops at Cold Harbor. Grant’s repeated assaults against well-entrenched Confederate soldiers cost the Army of the Potomac 60,000 casualties in just six weeks. Grant eviscerated his own army by the loss of so many veteran officers and men.
    It doesn’t take a genius to win a campaign when one side has a huge advantage in manpower and an overwhelming superiority in material. In spite of such disparity, Lee successfully defended Petersburg and Richmond against Grant for nine months. If their roles had been reversed, Grant would not have come close to accomplishing what Lee did from 1862-1865 — and the CSA would have been defeated much sooner than it was.

  24. Ishmael Zechariah says:

    TTG, SST;
    Just wanted to post a remembrance of Alexey Mozgovoi who also fought selflessly for the Donbass and was liquidated under strange circumstances. I hope Givi and others will not meet the same fate.
    Ishmael Zechariah

  25. ex-PFC Chuck says:

    I was thinking more in terms of the similarities of their life paths before and after their wars started. Grant had largely failed in civilian life after resigning his commission and immediately before the war, IIRC, was no more than in his father’s store in Galena and regarded as having no significant future. Similarly, Givi appeared to be in the usually dead-end job of security guard.
    I make no claim to having anywhere near the depth of knowledge of WBS history that many other commenters here have. Not to mention our host. That said, however, it seems to me that you’re being a bit harsh on Grant. The essential thing that he understood was that the North’s most important strategic advantages were quantitative superiority in material and manpower, and thus in the east he conducted a war of attrition. As you point out it wasn’t pretty but in the end it worked.

  26. robt willmann says:

    Joe100,
    What is the ” ‘Brain’s assassination” you referred to?

  27. Fred says:

    LeaNder,
    This has nothing to do with contraception or abortion but everything to do with journalists exposing corrupt practices. If it is illegal for some reporter to create a shell company to investigate planned parenthood then it is going to be illegal for journalists to create a shell company as cover to investigate coal mines, food processing plants or city governments; not to mention the federal government. What part of that is hard to understand?

  28. robt willmann,
    He is referring to Alexey Mozgovoi, former leader of the LNR Prizrak Brigade. As Ishmael Zechariah pointed out, he was assassinated under strange circumstances. He was another hero of Novorossiya instrumental in the closure and reduction of the Debaltseve cauldron last year.

  29. Brunswick says:

    Givi was a “rigger” in the Donbass coal mines, ( the guy who rigs and repairs all the wetal cabelling for the hoists, the lifts, the tracklines, scoops and shovels).
    He had an injury on the job, and while healing up from that injury, (no real Workers Comp in Ukraine since the endnof the Soviet) took a Security Guard job in a grocery store.
    Givi’s still young, and for many people of his generation, and younger generations, there are no “dead end” jobs, just job’s, if you are lucky enough to have one.

  30. Dubhaltach says:

    In reply to LondonBob 7 April 2016 at 12:01 PM
    “Said it before and will say it again, accepting the ridiculous borders drawn by the communists in the FSU and former Yugoslavia guaranteed some nasty ethnic conflicts as people sought to forcibly redraw those borders to reflect ethnic reality.”
    Kind of like the ridiculuous borders drawn in the Middle East and Africa by the former colonial powers – Britain and France.
    A general conclusion might be that when ridiculuously artificial borders are drawn that cut clear across ethnic reality that tears will follow.

  31. charly says:

    The EU officially wants to spend tens if not hundreds of billions on the Ukrainian oligarchs and have a cold war with Russia because that is what the EU agreements mean. What they unofficially want is something i don’t know but i do think that the Dutch government is only officially embarrassed.

  32. cynic says:

    Is Givi developing political ambitions? False fiends may be more deadly than avowed enemies.

  33. Brunswick says:

    It’s a bit more complex than that:
    http://time.com/4194226/planned-parenthood-david-daleiden-felony/
    “But Texas state law includes a provision that elevates this transgression—knowingly using a fake government document—to a second-degree felony if “the intent is to defraud or harm another.” The grand jury decided that Daleiden’s goal was to do just that, by using his cover story to make a covert recording designed to damage Planned Parenthood’s reputation.”
    http://graphics.latimes.com/planned-parenthood-videos/
    Unreleased footage filed in a civil court case shows that O’Donnell’s apparently spontaneous reflections were carefully rehearsed. David Daleiden, the anti-abortion activist who made the videos, is heard coaching O’Donnell through repeated takes, instructing her to repeat anecdotes, add details, speak “fluidly” and be “very natural.”
    “Let’s try it two more times,” he told her at one point.
    Later, O’Donnell protested: “I don’t want to tell that story again. Please don’t make me again, David.”
    Snip,……….
    “On Feb. 5, U.S. District Judge William Orrick in San Francisco issued an injunction requested by the NAF to keep more than 500 hours of Daleiden’s unreleased footage under seal.
    Orrick said the videos Daleiden has made public so far “have not been pieces of journalistic integrity, but misleadingly edited videos and unfounded assertions… of criminal misconduct.”
    Daleiden’s “fraud” was so extensive and his videos so misleading that his still-unpublished recordings of private conversations do not warrant 1st Amendment protection as free speech, the judge said. In his order, Orrick used the words “fraud” or “fraudulently” 13 times in referring to Daleiden’s methods.”

  34. Brunswick says:

    Apparently not, he still remains a Lt. Col in charge of the Somali Battalion.
    The ” on to Kiev” propaganda is from early in the Donbass War.

  35. bth says:

    I doubt there will be any reduction in economic sanctions on Russia with an active conflict going on in the Ukraine. Whether there are little green men assisting or regular units or Ukrainian rebels operating Russian equipment really doesn’t matter. There are consequences to all parties at this point and nothing positive has come from this conflict but grinding misery for the ever suffering Ukrainian.
    It is surprising how many on the thread want to see the Russians succeed in the Ukraine. Succeed in what exactly? Occupation of the its neighbor? Reestablishment of a Russian toady? A push to the west with associated consequences? A reemergence of the Soviet bloc? Why would any reasonable person want this?

  36. bth,
    The current government in Kiev is bent on the eradication or expulsion of all ethnic Russians on their soil. They are impoverishing all Ukrainians and are a festering sore for Europe. The Western governments seem perfectly content with this dumpster fire. I want to see the Russians succeed in removing the neo-nazi regime in Kiev. A purely rapacious oligarchic regime would be an improvement on the current lot. Having said that, I do not want to see a full scale Russian invasion. That would send the Borg into a tizzy and would lead to God knows what.

  37. Brunswick says:

    Define “succeed” in Ukraine?
    Prior to the Coup, Ukraine “straddled” the trade routes, mostly oil and gas, between Europe and the Russian Federation.
    Prior to the Orange Revolution, Ukrainian Governments alternated between being slightly more favorable to EU Trade, and slightly more favorable to Russian trade, and while corrupt, ( along with the whole of Ukrainian Society) were more or less “fairly” elected. Between the two competing visions of Government, both more or less agreed on The Constitution.
    The Orange Revolution was a response to ongoing corruption, economic stagnation, but also a product of 5 years of NED/EU ” investments” in funding, organizing and expanding pro-EU groups and political parties in Ukraine. The Orange Revolution brought in highly controversial Constitutional changes, but quickly collapsed under the burden of both it’s own corruption, and it’s persecution/ignoring of the needs and requirements of the Russian aligned industries and Oblasts, ( states or Provinces).
    One product of the Orange Revolution changes, was that the Presidently Appointed Governors of the Oblasts, no longer needed to work “with” the locally elected Rada’s, ( Parliaments) in the governing of the Rada.
    The Party of Regions (Russian orientated) won the next elections and while they resolved some of the trade with Russia that had been lost, not all the trade came back,
    In subsequent elections and subsequent Governments the country wobbled back and forth, ( loseing trade with Russia each time), corruption deepend, and Constitutional squabbles festered up to the Supreme Court. Meanwhile the NED/EU accelerated their funding of pro-EU groups, to the point that in an attempt to create another Colour Revolution, Maiden broke out, and as the economy continued to decline, grew.
    The Party of Regions when they came back into power, continued the Association Agreement negotiations with the EU and reached a signable deal.
    The EU Assention Agreement required that Ukraine swap $60 billion dollars of trade with, and aid from Russia, for a “promised” matching trade and aid package from the EU.
    A week before Yanokovich was supposed to sign the agreement, the actual EU aid and trade numbers leaked out, $16 billion dollars a year were the “real” numbers.
    That’s a 74% pay cut for every Ukrainian.
    Yanukovich balked, and at the last minute, the EU brokered The Compromise Agreement, then Maiden stormed the Rada, the Party of Regions members and many of their allies fled from Kiev in fear for their lives, ( many were beaten), and an highly unconstitutional process and vote was held by the remaining MP’s, ( under the watch of armed and violent Maiden activists) to create a “new” appointed President, Prime Minister and Speaker.
    The “new” Rada immediately introduced a series of laws criminalising the Russian language, (79% of Ukrainians), the Orthodox Church, (64% of Ukrainians) and Russian trade, ( 74% of the Ukrainian Economy), and membership in the Party of Regions.
    In areas of the Ukraine politically dominated by the Party of Regions, anyi-Maiden protests arose, copying the Maiden tactics of low level violence, seizures and occupations of Government buildings, and public protests and barricades.
    Receiving credible intel that there was a joint Turkish-Ukraine program in place to force Russia out of it’s bases in Crimea, with the aid of 800 additional Spetnaz troops, Russian Forces based in Crimea, ( the Polite Men” seized and secured Crimea.
    The Interm President then launched the “AntiTerrorism Operation” , claiming the anti-Maiden protestors were terrorists and sent the Ukrainian Army to clear the protests.
    The “Russian Goals” in Ukraine is the Minsk II agreement, which basically allows Ukraine to straddle the Russia/EU divide, and “Federalizes” the Oblasts, giving the Oblasts the right to elect their own Rada’s, elect their Governors, and pursue many aspects of economics, trade, education, public services ( just like US States do) independently of the Federal Government.
    Given the competeing “visions” for the future of Ukraine:
    – the EU apparently want’s Ukraine to be an economic colony, cut off from Russia, predominantly energy and agricultual, subject to austerity and hollowed out, and as a raw labour pool.
    – the US appears to mostly focused on Ukraine becoming another NATO adjunct, which would even further constrain Russia on it’s southern border,
    – Russia wants Ukraine to “straddle” EU/Russian trade making a profit on every transaction that crosses Ukraine, with Ukraine selling products to “both sides”, and the rights of all Ukrainian language, religion and culture groups protected by local Governornance.
    It appears very much that “Russia’s” vision for Ukraine appears to be the “best” for the peace and prosperity of all Ukrainians.

  38. SmoothieX12 says:

    “Why would any reasonable person want this?”
    A real reasonable person should start with learning REAL Russian-Soviet-Russian history.Learning the REAL history of WW II could be a good, however improbable, start.

  39. SmoothieX12 says:

    “The current government in Kiev is bent on the eradication or expulsion of all ethnic Russians on their soil.”
    Sadly, there is no concept of a huge difference between русский and россиянин in English language. The problem start with that–definition of nation.

  40. Fred says:

    Brunswick,
    Complex, sure. However an anti-abortion activist that wants to “harm another” i.e. Planned Parenthood? There’s a shocker. Yet just when did a not for profit organization become a person and why isn’t the left, which is adamantly against the idea of corporate personhood, abandon that principle? Apparently the only non-persons in the case are fetuses. Of course ordering all the evidence be removed from public view “injunction … to keep more than 500 hours of Daleiden’s unreleased footage under seal.” is not preemptive censorship but good old fashioned justice.
    While we are at it, some background on the judge from Wikipedia:
    According to the Public Citizen, a non-profit, consumer rights advocacy group, William H. Orrick III, who was employeed by Coblentz, Patch, Duffy & Bass, raised at least $200,000 for Barack Obama and donated $30,800 to committees supporting him.[9] (http://sfappeal.com/2013/05/sf-lawyer-follows-fathers-footsteps-into-federal-judgeship/)
    I’m sure we’ll hear some howling on the left when some small c conservative judge does the same to to some Rolling Stone “reporter”. (Perhaps the one who did that bang up job ‘reporting’ on the non-incident at that fraternity at UVA.)

  41. Brunswick says:

    A Texas Grand Jury, assembled to investigate and possibly charge Planned Parenthood, instead, on the basis of the “activists fraud” started investigating the fraud instead, which has ( started) leading to charges and Civil Suits in Texas, and other states.
    Should people who deliberately commit fraud be immune from criminal and civil charges on First Amendment and claims of “Journalism”?
    The cases are ongoing, but the activists already achieved their desired result, the defunding of Planned Parenthood in many States.
    Planned Parenthood is currently considering if they can afford to continue to provide health servinces in many of these States, or if they will have to close hundreds of clinics. In many regions, Planned Parenthood are the only local provider of Womens health services, from pap smears to pre-natal care.
    https://www.texasobserver.org/texas-new-abortion-law-is-driving-women-to-extremes/
    http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2016/03/31/texas-forced-this-woman-to-deliver-a-stillborn-baby.html
    In theory, in the US, Campaign Contributions are not “supposed to” affect the actions of Elected Officials. Perhaps your allegation if influence is misdirected, and your concern should be the Corporate and Private funding of “elected” Officials, from Dogcatchers to Judges, that have in past cases, severely influenced the elected officials subsequent actions and rendered them “nonimpartial”. Perhaps, many of these positions could be “appointed” by either neutral organizations or by a bipartizan selection system. Perhaps, the solution is a Publically Funded campaign with tax payers money.
    http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/the-best-judge-3-million_b_214639.html
    Btw, Rolling Stone is being sued,
    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/thr-esq/rolling-stone-sued-25-million-838548

  42. FkDahl says:

    Good summary Brunswick! I may add that the Kiev regime can use any kind of weapons against “it’s” cities in Donbass, including Su-25 against civilians in a city hall office, ballistic missiles, heavy artillery, the Odessa massacre etc without EVER hearing one word of complaint (publicly) from EU leaders/toadies or US. They can bombard away and it’s Russia that get’s santioned.
    To add you should read the report from U Ottawa pointing out how the shooters on Maidan square were shooting from activist controlled buildings – people (and trees) were hit from behind.
    Finally it irritates me to no end to have a person like Carl Bildt urging Yanokovich not to use any violence against the Maidan protesters – which he complied with – and the reaction a few weeks later when all demonstrators in the East were declared terrorists and artillery was brought in, where the territorial integrity of Ukraine was sacrosanct.

  43. Old Microbiologist says:

    Exactly. There is also the factors such as fighting for your home against aggressive and irrational invaders with little accountability. That is against a background for Ukrainian hatred of Russians which the Fonbass was 95% ethnic Russians. On top of that the Novorussyian resistance forced all youth to evacuate to Rostov and only veterans fought in their stead while they were trained in Russia. The resistance used methods typical for an insurgency with rapid movement, sniper attacks, and accurate artillery which gave the impression of larger forces. The Ukrainian Army was being led from behind with politicians making the decisions. So a combination of poorly trained conscript soldiers using old poorly maintained equipment being led by politicians far from the battlefield is always a recipe for disaster. Not often mentioned is the loss of experienced leadership through attrition and defections. Many good leaders were fired by Kiev and replaced with sycophantic officers. Following the early battles there arose privately funded new-Nazi forces and also some American mercenaries. Really, the whole “war” aka Anti-terrorism Operation, was a debacle. The Novorussyian forces were quick to recover damaged and abandoned equipment and of course there were supplies coming in from Russia. I noticed though that it was always a tit for tat. If the US or EU provided something more sophisticated then something from Russia also appeared soon after. They were very careful to do that. But, some horrendous acts were used by the Kiev forces including ballistic missiles. I am a bit surprised nerve gas wasn’t attempted as a false flag as happened in Syria. Anyway, IMHO the resistance has always had the higher moral ground and have more or less acted more professionally. The Ukrainian army and in particular the private battalions are really thuggish and the latter are cowardly and clearly war criminals.

  44. LeaNder says:

    “Doctors tried several emergency measures to stop the preterm labor, including putting Taylor on an incline in the hopes that they could perform a cervical cerclage—a procedure in which doctors stitch shut the cervix. Nothing worked. Nothing could save him.”
    Horrible enough, but at least she knew what was going on. My mother’s mother died of a then apparently not yet recognizable dead child inside. It didn’t stick out its foot. When she and/or the doctors realized it was too late. The dead baby inside her had poisoned her whole body. The doctors sent her back home to die.
    The above stitching may achieve something similar today. How long, is it supposed to remain shut?
    Nature? Against Nature? Under what conditions does it make sense?

  45. SmoothieX12 says:

    Unofficially they know (or, rather, beginning to feel) that Ukraine is a failed state and they want Russia to pay (literally) for this cesspool while continuing with their “policies”. The truth, however, is such that it is EU which must pay for Ukraine and face the consequences of what EU helped to “create”. Russia, meanwhile, is going to support only friendly territories, such as Donbass and, eventually, parts of former Ukraine which are known as Malorossia.

  46. Fred says:

    Brunswick,
    “Should people who deliberately commit fraud be immune from criminal and civil charges on First Amendment and claims of “Journalism””
    The answer for the Harris County (TX) DA is yes. The charge is for “tampering with a governmental record”. That is a precedent to charge any other journalist for using a business as ‘cover’ for an under cover investigation. When has that ever been done in the history of the State of Texas? Given the number of prosecutions by the Obama administration against whistle-blowers it should be no surprise that other democratic officials are following the same principle. It should serve as warning that the political elite are now very much against the first amendment.
    As to your other comments which state is taking Rolling Stone to court for fraud? None. That is a civil suit. Planned Parenthood is doing the same thing. Those are not government actions.

  47. Babak Makkinejad says:

    I would turn the question around.
    What is the definition of success for the Western Diocletian states (a.k.a. the Euro-Atlantic Community, a.k.a. NATO) globally?
    What is it in their confrontation with Russia?
    In their nascent confrontation with China?
    In their perennial – it seems – confrontation with Islam and specially with the Shia World?
    Is success measured by how many Shoah Temples (a.k.a. Holocaust Museums) are erected here and there; specially one in Tehran?
    Are they trying to force down on everyone else the “Man-made Global Warming” hypothesis in order to thwart the industrial development of non-Western world?
    Are they trying to turn the rest of the world – outside of their alliance structure – into harmless pastoralist countries, such as Costa Rica, that are poor and ready to be used for their amusement – say renting out their wombs and their vaginas?
    What is happiness for Western Diocletian states?

  48. elkern says:

    thx, TTG & all.
    I would have expected better propaganda – more clever, less blatant, better produced – at least if Russian professionals were directly involved. I’d conclude that it’s homemade, by local amateurs, not something made by “little green men”.
    I’d also bet that Givi is a fighter, capable of leading a military unit, but not a country. Changing the spelling of Kiev to the Russian version may fire up his troops, but it would also harden the resistance of ethnic Ukrainians. Maybe I’m reading too much into one picture, but Givi isn’t going to re-unite the Ukraine.

  49. LeaNder says:

    “The “new” Rada immediately introduced a series of laws criminalising the Russian language, (79% of Ukrainians), the Orthodox Church, (64% of Ukrainians) and Russian trade, ( 74% of the Ukrainian Economy), and membership in the Party of Regions.”
    Brunswick, the respective images of the enemy may have been well in place at that time, accompanied by Paranoia on both sides. To this “nitwit”, in case anyone does not know it by now.
    “Receiving credible intel that there was a joint Turkish-Ukraine program in place to force Russia out of it’s bases in Crimea”
    Hmm? Credible? I am vaguely aware of EU enlargement East efforts, from Russia’s perspective: encirclement… and it feels both could be somewhat envisioning a similar direction concerning the EU and in Ukraine’s case Nato expansion, which seem to come in a package. No doubt Turkey could have shown some type of solidarity concerning EU efforts. … If I forget for a while time frames and that the Tayyib wasn’t really pro-Europe earlier in his life and look at matters historically.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turkey%E2%80%93Ukraine_relations
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Accession_of_Turkey_to_the_European_Union#1910s.E2.80.931990s
    **********
    Concerning austerity, I would like to refer to my friend Yanis, I happen to mostly agree with him on the topic of the Panama papers and Brexit (apart from the reminder of the Russian business man, in the first panel session, whom paradoxically enough, I also agree with. Not that what he say is not also true for the US to a large extend, and slightly lesser for Germany. With Germany in a different economical class …).
    At one point in time, I called Yanis the prophet of austerity, later the traveling salesmen. Here in the second passage after the Panama panel on: “The Weak must suffer, what they must”.
    No doubt transparency is theoretically a good thing long term, or is it, like making the EU more democratic and streaming everything. But pray tell me, how many have time to watch matters and study matters in details? Will they also put up matters discussed the whole documents. Or does he consider streaming enough?
    THUS: while I do share his pessimist fear, about the “toxic political powers” gaining prominence in Europe, I don’t share his hope that this can be prevented by “transparency in Europe”. The average citizen, not least the “Weak that must suffer”, would always need “translators”, if they bother to still vote at all. Which opens the doors for special interests, on the two sides that did not change over the centuries.
    See the Dutch electorate’s amount of interest in trade with the Ukraine? Which is one step of the way to EU membership.

  50. LeaNder says:

    I babbled a lot yesterday, dealing with a network under assault and looking for distraction.
    In the case before, I didn’t even check coherence and/or spelling.
    In any case it feels I may have forgotten to add the link:
    http://yanisvaroufakis.eu/2016/04/05/discussing-panama-papers-uk-referendum-channel-4-news4-april-2016/

  51. Good, accurate and economical summary. All I would add is that Moscow is hoping that, one way or another, decent Ukrainians will somehow rise against the corrupt/nazi/NATO stooges in power. That will take time, suffering and the growing indifference of outsiders. For years I’ve been saying that all Moscow wants is a Ukraine that 1) pays its bills 2) is not a NATO launching pad and 3) doesn’t have a crisis every five years that keep everybody in Moscow up all night. But Crimea is a done deal. In short prosperous enough, neutral and reasonably stable. BTW I say “nazi” and not “neo nazi” because Right Sektor/Svoboda/Azov types can trace their decent from the real thing; they’re not kids living in Mummy’s basement with a collection of replica SS knives.

  52. See this http://vineyardsaker.blogspot.ca/2014/02/what-really-happened-overnight-in-crimea.html
    IMO this was the only insertion of Russian forces from outside; all the others were already there.

  53. LeaNder says:

    “as ‘cover’ for an under cover investigation”
    Fred, considering the context, and I don’t even have to follow neither your or Brunswick’s links. OK I looked at two.* The judge decided it was central evidence, that’s why he possibly decided to seal both what he considered an attempt to manipulate a section of the public and I guess the fraud that made it possible cannot be used to do exactly that:
    “Of course ordering all the evidence be removed from public view “injunction … to keep more than 500 hours of Daleiden’s unreleased footage under seal.” is not preemptive censorship but good old fashioned justice.”
    If he considers it both fraud and evidence, how could he have decided otherwise?
    I assume, that –again I did not look up any links on this issue, since it is SERIOUSLY OFF TOPIC anyway –that there are for you appropriate conservative judges that can take a look.
    But, then any court of appeal has to deal with his argument, his evidence and the law. Law leaves legal traces.
    Although, yes, I have no doubt that a specialist at jury selection among other things may help to get you and Fox News the verdict they like. If they haven’t forgotten about it by then.
    * We debated the Rolling Stones rape, fraternities and university hype before. I am female, but had I been a reporter I had surely handled it with care. But then there are reasons for that. Experience?

  54. ISL says:

    Well, the WW2 movies I watched had me and the American audience cheering against the Nazi’s. Still feel the same.

  55. bth says:

    “The videos show Tolstykh clearly identifying himself before grabbing the prisoners by the face, brandishing a dagger, and cutting off military insignia and forcing them into the prisoners’ mouths.” Givi makes popular videos abusing Ukrainian prisoners on YouTube. You can watch about 20 minutes of it on YouTube but will have to get the link yourself. I’m sure the fellow travelers will have a positive spin to add.

  56. elkern,
    You’re definitely reading too much into this. It’s just fan art. The internet is full of this stuff.

  57. jld says:

    We would welcome your opinion (positive spin?) about the ISIS/Al-Quaeda/FSA videos on Youtube, which very likely amount to way way more than 20 minutes…

  58. bth,
    If Givi was in the U.S. Army, he would be standing before a court-martial for his treatment of prisoners. It was a Russian news crew who made that video. Weeks later, the Donetsk government paraded Ukrainian prisoners through the streets of Donetsk, just as the Soviets did to German prisoners in Moscow. The West howled bloody murder about this, too. That is also considered a war crime. As is the indiscriminate bombardment of civilian targets by the Ukrainians, but the West seems to have no problem with that. How’s that for fellow traveler positive spin?

  59. Fred says:

    LeaNder,
    The topic of this thread relates to the war in Ukraine. My comment was about investigative journalism and government attempts to compel journalistic silence with intimidation through use of prosecution on even the flimsiest of legal basis or of evidence. This comment was made in response to one noting investigations by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists.
    Government attempts at silencing journalists are very much a part of the what is happening in Ukraine, from the Maidan Square “revolution” to the shooting down of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 to this activity in the Donbass. Too bad you don’t understand that connection.

  60. Fred says:

    Brunswick,
    Thank you for a very informative summary.

  61. Joe100 says:

    I recall a post on the Col Cassad blog during the heavy Donbass bombardment period indicating that that care was taken by the Kiev forces not to shell the wealthy residential areas of Donesk..
    And then there is the intercept of a phone call by EU foreign Minister Ashton, Estonian foreign minister Urmas Paet and Olga Bogomolets, a doctor working with Maiden protestors. Dr. Bogomolets indicates that it was clear to her that the sniping coming from both sides was by the same group. After some “gee we should investigate that” chatter, later on the conversation Ashton notes that she will push Dr. Bogomolets as the new health minister..
    Paet confirmed that intercept was of an actual call and accurate.
    See: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/mar/05/ukraine-bugged-call-catherine-ashton-urmas-paet
    And it is worth listening to this call on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZEgJ0oo3OA8

  62. Brunswick says:

    If you are looking for a “case” of Government silencing journalist’s
    David Daleiden is not an example, no more than Bernie Madoff is a case Big Government shutting down an entrepreneur/small businessman.

  63. Brunswick says:

    LeaNder,
    Ukraine is one of those 20th Century European Wars, “false constructs”.
    Eastern Ukraine has “always” been Russian, Western Ukraine used to be part of the AustroHungarian Empire’s Galacia, and parts were part of Poland’s Galacia.
    It’s one of those “messy” places on the map where major changes of both map lines and populations were moved, ( and exterminated) many times after 1914.
    It’s also one of those places where highly selective history can be easily written to demonize the “other”, and yet the movements of people over time has left “the other”, not two villages down and across the river, but instead, living in the flat above you.
    It’s a country with multiple wealths, a surfit of good land and clean water, energy by the ton, “old” industries like steelmaking and “new” industries like satellites and websites, with a highly educated population, that should be rich beyond measure,
    But instead, the people live in poverty which since the end of the Soviet has just become worse and worse.

  64. Fred says:

    Brunswick,
    You are right, he’s not, he’s just the first step in the journey.

  65. Dubhaltach says:

    TTG, All:
    Is Yatsenyuk going willingly or was he pushed? Does anyone know anything about Groysman? http://www.unian.info/politics/1315061-mp-from-poroshenko-bloc-faction-says-groysman-to-become-new-prime-minister.html
    Dubhaltach

  66. Dubhaltach,
    I think Yats left as a sacrificial goat in an attempt to relieve Kiev of its terminal sickness. He knew it was coming and he resigned before only to be reinstated. Groysman has been part of the Kiev government as long as Yats has. I don’t know what difference he can make. What concerns me more is the appointment of Yarosh as an official advisor to the Ukrainian Chief of Staff and the inclusion of the Pravy Sektor battalions into the Ukrainian Army. As Patrick Armstrong pointed out, these aren’t neo-nazis, these people are direct descendants of Hitler’s nazis.

  67. Dubhaltach says:

    In reply to The Twisted Genius 10 April 2016 at 01:41 PM
    Thanks TTG
    Pretty much what I’d thought. Yours and Patrick Armstrong’s point about the re-emergence of Hitler’s descendents is something I can vouch for from direct experience.
    I live in Denmark and have done a fair bit of travelling in former Soviet Bloc countries but in particular Poland and the Baltic republics. Between the horrific attitudes of some of their soldiers and the horrific history in which they took pride I sometimes found it difficult to credit my own ears. (There was a lot of contact between the Nordic Council countries and the Baltic republics in particular at the time – both in terms of EU and in terms of the Nordic Council countries strengthening their “near abroad” neighbours).
    I’m the product of an Irish father and a Danish mother so animosity between small countries that have been occupied by their larger neighbours is something I can well understand. But most of what I heard was out and out Fascism. Particularly in the Baltic republics it was downright vicious in Estonia the people I met downright glorified the exploits of Franz Augsberger and his men.
    Poland wasn’t quite so bad, the people I met tended to hark back to the thirties rather than WWII for obvious reasons but it’s still the only country where I was asked in a very hostile way if I was a Jew (Yid). Not that a nostalgia for the Polish government before the war is all that much better mind you – they were a very nasty bunch of extreme right wing fanatical nationalists.
    Do you remember the Polish guy who posted here (???Peter) the one who could never hide his ethnic hatreds? – he was mild compared to these guys.

  68. bth says:

    This thread has lost objectivity. Its become a propaganda pile on.

  69. turcopolier says:

    BTH
    Please finish your thought. pl

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