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Thread: Ukraine Elections and Political Developments

  1. #406
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    So 'Ze', our comedian President, finally has a time and place for a 'Normandy Format' meeting with Putin to doubtless emerge with a 'Peace in our time' surrender of the occupied territories: Paris on December 9th. Muscovy made further talks dependent on Ukrainian acceptance of the so called 'Steinmeir Formula' and now that withdrawals have occurred (unilaterally on the Ukrainian side - the Muscovites now say they will withdraw after the Paris meeting) we are ready to surrender totally it seems - or at least Zelensky and his patron Kolomoisky. Indeed the 'oligarch' Kolomoisky's, on who's TV channel the Comedian in Chief was broadcast and who has been photographed in the President's office, view has shifted 180 degrees since 2014 when he was Mayor of Dnipro and was financing militias;

    “Give it five, 10 years, and the blood will be forgotten,” Mr. Kolomoisky said. “I showed in 2014 that I don’t want to be with Russia,” he added. “I’m describing, objectively, what I’m seeing and where things are heading.”
    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/11/13/w...ky-russia.html

    How strange that the Comedian's 'desire for peace' seems so aligned with the changed view of the 'oligarch'... almost uncanny timing.

    One might also ask 'why Paris' but bearing in mind Macron's recent attempts to kiss Putin's rear end "Welcome them back into Europe" etc it does not surprise me that Macron was chosen to host the surrender.

    We have elected at best a Chamberlain it seems when we needed a Churchill. It is beyond all reason and any honour - for there is not one single shred of evidence that can lead anyone that Putin and his mangy gang of thieving and mass murdering cohorts will keep any deal that is agreed - even one so pathetically weak as Zelensky has proposed. Autonomy for the occupied Donbass will doubtless come with a veto on foreign policy dictated through the so called 'Peoples Republiks' by Moscow. It seems our fellow citizens - Tatar and Ukrainian - in Crimea will then just be forgotten about - as if the Government of Ukraine did not have any duty to them. I wonder what Zelensky's price was? President for life or just payments into Swiss account. Or is he just so seriously stupid to commit the same errors of Chamberlain and Viscount Halifax? You cannot appease a bear when it has your leg in it's mouth.

    This war is I fear just the start, or perhaps we should now recognise Chechnya and Georgia as the origins of this renewed Mafiosi Kremlin desire for power. It's tentacles of corruption, deceit, it's filthy stolen money, reach deep into the heart of every free nation in Europe and across the Atlantic. It is a war the like of which none have seen before; it aims to strike us from within and turn friend against friend with it's lies and pays it's 'useful idiots' well as Mr Manafort proved. Long may he rot in jail. If the surrender of the occupied Donbass occurs in December as I expect I predict Belarus will be next. If Putin can claim he has made a new Union state - having added Belarus - he will say he can run for President again.

    For myself I will fight wherever and however I may where those who desire liberty and truth exist in Europe or with any person or nation that fights against the new evil of the mass murdering kleptocratic regime that Putin leads in Moscow. They are not that strong and I have total confidence of our eventual victory. But I would rather die choking in my own blood than sign any false 'peace' - for there can be none until Ukrainian land is free. "Success is never final, failure never fatal. You just need courage to go on." (Churchill)

  2. #407
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    Ahead of the coming 'Normandy Format' on the Minsk Process the so called 'Donestk Peoples Republik' have allegedly passed a vote (2 even the Muscovite reports say, which seems a little bit of a waste of time to make things look 'democratic') that they lay claim to the whole of the Donestsk Oblast (the equivalent of a 'County' in England) of which the Muscovites and their proxies currently occupy roughly a third. This would mean surrendering to them Sloviansk and Kramatorsk again for example and a great deal more strategic avenues for attacks on Kharkiv and the lower Dnipro cities. This comes a few days after Lavrov (the Muscovite Foreign Minister) said that the Ukrainian Government must enter into talks with the so called 'Republiks'.

    Nor have they retired or stopped firing at Ukrainian troops from the areas where the Comedian forced our forces to withdraw. Nor apparently are other conditions met;

    "Meanwhile, the 'DPR'/'LPR' have not let the International Committee of the Red Cross have access to [Ukrainian] detainees; the OSCE SMM has not been provided with unhindered access to the territory of Donbas that is not controlled by Ukraine, including the Russian-Ukrainian border: No conditions for the Zolote checkpoint have been created," she said on Facebook on November 27. Read also Special envoy Sajdik on Minsk talks: Recent developments inspire certain optimism According to her, the issue of freeing the detainees remains particularly pressing.

    https://www.unian.info/war/10771487-...s-meeting.html

    Interesting that this 'demand' of the so called 'DPR' is voiced at; https://www.kommersant.ru/doc/4178217 of which this the gist;

    The parliament of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) adopted a law establishing the borders of the republic within the Donetsk region of Ukraine as of 2014. As the Donetsk news agency reported, the meeting was attended by 76 deputies who unanimously supported the document in two readings.

    “In this law, those people who live in the territory temporarily controlled by Ukraine are not forgotten. Therefore, the border was defined on the territory of the Donetsk region, which was for the period of 2014, ”said the chairman of the People’s Council of the Republic Vladimir Bidevka.
    So Zelensky is going to Paris, where Macron's 180 degree turnabout on Muscovy, who now 'should be welcomed back into Europe' and 'Not an enemy' (along with 'NATO is brain dead') is a total 180 degree reverse of his former self and raises many questions - even among his former French advisors; and Germany (intent on selling out 'Europe' for North Stream 2) and zero accomplished in return except more dead Ukrainian soldiers. Oh a few hostages exchanged for a legitimate war criminals and Ukrainian national! We also got back the two patrol boats and the tug - which apparently had been vandalised to the point where toilets were removed. This incidentally prompted a demonstration outside the Muscovite Embassy were people took toilets to donate to their 'fraternal brothers'.

  3. #408
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    Following the Serbian expulsion of Georgiy Kleban (the Deputy Military Attache in Belgrade), a GRU agent caught on film handing over a bag of cash to a Serbian Military Officer recently (video below) Germany yesterday expelled (personna no gratia) two Muscovite 'diplomats' yesterday.

    The Serbian video:




    The German assassination (for sadly it was successful) of Zelimkhan Khangoshvili actually occurred before the Belgrade 'businessmen meeting' back in August 23rd. First of all who was Khangoshvili and who would want to shoot him using a Glock 26 silencer anyway? Well he was born in Georgia but of Chechen parentage. During the Chechen wars he fought as a Commander for Republik of Iskeria (as the free Chechen state called itself briefly). Later he held a Military command in Georgian army during the South Ossetia war. After that he survived several assassination attempts in Georgia before fleeing with his family to Germany after the election of billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili, who had made all his money in Muscovy with a 'Putin license' so to speak as Prime Minister in 2012(? I think). Now who could want Zelimkhan demised? The wonder is that the Germans did not draw the obvious conclusions but rebuked the dead man as a terrorist group called "Caucasian Emirates" [sic] when faced with real terrorism on their own doorstep. One guy was even arrested - a Muscovite who went by the passport name of Vadim Sokolov. This naturally is not his true name which is Vadim Nikolaevich Krasikov.


    It has taken the Germans over 3 months to recognise what should have been apparent from the outset.

    Bellingcat ran a full 'diagnostic' on this 'Vadim Sokolov' who according to them is responsible for other deaths https://www.bellingcat.com/news/uk-a...cow-to-berlin/

    Just today in Surrey, England Dmitry Obretetsky (and his dog apparently, which he was walking at the time) were killed after being hit by a car - which did not stop. Doubtless "Police are conducting inquiries" as usual. It is said that - merely a rumour I heard - that Dmitry had refused the loan of his yacht (it is seemingly obligatory to have a yacht as a Muscovite billionaire) to Medvedev - who's Wife owns a yacht anyway. Is that a reason to kill a man? The problem is once you become paranoid - and even bloggers today can be labelled "Foreign Agents" and it is offence to insult the Government or Putin - then everyone is 'the enemy' outside and within. This is how Stalin's "Terror" started.

    It is has been evident for some time there is nothing less than a Muscovite assassination sqad roaming Europe. One of the would be Skripal murderers had previously been in Bulgaria (presumably to visit another famous Cathedral) when some arms trader called Emilian Gebrev died of poisoning (see https://www.themoscowtimes.com/2019/...lingcat-a68306 and other reporting). This unit Bellingcat and others now name "Unit 29155". Today the French daily 'Le Monde' revealed/alleged that members of this unit regularly checked into a sub base in the French region of Haute Savoie (near the Italian and Swiss borders); https://www.scmp.com/news/world/euro...ar-base-secret

    There are many questions that arise from this - not least why the search for this assassination unit started only post Skripal? I mean there were quite a few before and after Sasha Litvinenko. Granted that his assassins did not act as 'illegals' but there was surely cause for investigation long ago. Why has still taken the German authorities 3 months to recognise another act of Muscovite state authorised terrorism on their sovereign territory? No German leader has said a word as far as I know. Why not? Most importantly from where I sit what, if any, effect is this likely to have on the German position in next weeks 'Normandy Format' talks regarding the war in Ukraine?

    It must be obvious to all now that Muscovy under this tyrannical Chekist Mafia state run by Putin is a state sponsor of assassination (including among it's own people) and they should duly be put on 'terrorist organisation' list and all sanctions applied according to their right status.
    Last edited by snapper; 05 Dec 19, at 20:02.

  4. #409
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    My short takeaway from the Paris 'Normandy Format' meeting: Minsk 'agreements' are rubbish (but we have know that for since the day they were signed). A ceasefire is to be called - like the previous 21 other 'ceasefires' doubtless. Full all for all prisoner exchange by the New Year; I will make an edible hat and bet on having to eat it.

    By and large I think our Clown President did far better than I expected.

  5. #410
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    Update: Predictably there has been NO ceasefire - who'd have guessed? The prisoner exchange is reportedly in trouble because some of the Muscovites have no desire to be returned - they do not fancy their 'welcome' chez Putin.

    Muscovy is pressuring Lukashenka on the 'Union State'; Luka, who really does not get on with Putin, was summoned to Sochi recently for talks with Volya P recently and while there massive demonstrations were held in Minsk in support of Belorussian independence - with the consent evidently of the authorities. One should not forget that in 2014 Lukasheka said Crimea was Ukrainian and for obvious reasons - for if it can be changed to Muscovite within 2 weeks then what precedent does that set for his own personal fiefdom? This desire to maintain an independent Belarus naturally receives support from Kyiv and Warsawa (where apparently they thought Luka would go belly up) as well as the Baltic nations - who would be strategically lost to military support in the event of a Muscovite 'absorption' of Belarus as well as putting Ukraine in further danger and threatening Poland - who Putin has accused of starting WW2 recently in reply to a European Parliament vote that condemned the Molotov - Ribbentrop Pact as one of the causes of that war. In the end the Lukashenka 'shuffle' between east and west must end and with the ever increasing pressure from Moscow - for reasons I shall explain in a minute - it is likely to come sooner rather than later. It would be wise for the EU nations and US, Canada to give Belarus guarantees to sustain it's independence if force is used - which it will be if guarantees of help are not given.

    The reason why Putin wants this 'new Union State' is simple: In 2024 he will finish his second consecutive term as Kappo de tutti Kappi and without changing the constitution he cannot stand again for the next election cycle. But IF it is a 'new Union State' (having absorbed Belarus) then in theory he could stand for the first time for President of the 'new state'. Thus something has to give from his point of view - and that is Lukashenka. I am no Lukashenka fan - far from it, he is despicable in my view and I am sure a free Belarusian people would have justice done to him; but I am a fan of not letting Belarus fall entirely to the enemy of the free world.

  6. #411
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    Quote Originally Posted by snapper View Post
    By and large I think our Clown President did far better than I expected.
    In Ukraine this is actually true : D

    This should be a fun listen

    What the Ukraine Scandal Looks Like ... From Ukraine | NPR | Dec 23 2019
    Last edited by Double Edge; 27 Dec 19, at 21:59.

  7. #412
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    Christmas controversies and arguments.

    In the run up to Christmas (12 December) some arrests were made in relation to the murder of Pavel Sheremet, who died in a car bomb in Kyiv spring 2016 (I forget which month); the case was labelled as 'murder' for obvious reasons though he was in his Girlfriend's car. Sheremet was originally a Belorusian but fell foul of Lukashenka for his reporting way back in the late 1990s and got put in prison there. The then Muscovite Government protested and in due course he was released and migrated to Muscovy where he got a passport. He became a Nemtsov pal in Muscovy and criticised Putin and Poroshenko but fled Muscovy in 2015 to Kyiv until someone caught up with him. So who did they arrest for this crime? Five Ukrainian people who had served in the war (Vladyslav Hryshchenko, a war veteran; Inna Hryshchenko, his wife and a war veteran; Yulia Kuzmenko, a children’s surgeon who has been helping the army; Andriy Antonenko, a military officer and musician; and Yana Dugar, a servicewoman).

    This to some, myself included, seems suspect to say the least. Doubtless Sheremet had made important and powerful enemies in his brave reporting but what reason would this assorted bunch of Ukrainian patriots who had all seen the front have for murdering him - unless they were acting on behalf of one some greater foe he had made? In a video of the car a man and Lady are seen messing about under the car - allegedly planting the bomb but they cannot be identified. The car they drove off in was registered to a person in Odessa - who worked for the Ministry of the Interior (all this is public domain) so wtf?

    No matter what the common view is that the person who ordered the hit must be found and the 'defenders of Ukraine' either receive a slap on the hand - if involved at all (which some do not believe) or be let go. Those who have defended the homeland are naturally held in the highest regard here but for myself if these people are conclusively proved to had a part in this murder the law must have it's course; a hero cannot be forgiven for later crimes unless it be for psychological reasons.



    Then we had a second 'prisoner swap' last weekend; 76 of ours for 124 not entirely Muscovites. Many of the people released by Ukraine were Muscovite passport holders that were caught or surrendered in Donbass. How they got there or what they were doing is presumably swept under the carpet... However what annoyed alot of people (and me) is that is was allegedly "integral" to the deal that eight people in particular be given to Muscovy (or basically the Putin Mafia), five former Berkut officers who were awaiting trial for the Maidan murders and 3 others arrested and awaiting trial for a bomb attack in Kharkiv in 2015; all Ukrainian citizens.

    The first question - which I had before with the MH17 Ukrainian witness we 'swapped' - is how can we swap traitors for innocent hostages? This is giving up our integrity; the alleged traitors, if they are convicted as such, should surely face the normal legal process and if found innocent be released or serve their time as the court decides. While I am sure their families welcome back the Ukrainian hostages - and it makes us all feel good - are we not trying to prove that the rule of law exists here? Under what legal procedure were these people released from prison? They did not receive a Presidential pardon so who ordered it and on what legal basis? These questions have prompted a court case to discover the answers.

    Secondly on the same subject as these eight people who it were it seems at least prima facie illegaly released from prison, why does Moscow have such an interest in them if their alleged crimes were nothing to do with Moscow, which denies any part in the war? Of course the true answers from Moscow will never be known but this is a partial admition of guilt for these crimes that they orchestrated in Ukraine.


    The last talking point in recent Ukrainian domestic affairs concerns the Clown President's New Years message to country. A very slick piece with nice background music building etc which you find here; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qo7JDweEAYs&t=637s

    Translated to English it means;

    "Dear Ukrainians. Usually, in the New Year's greetings, presidents tell us about GDP growth, lower inflation, 'implementation', 'diversification', and other obscure terms. In general, they convince us that we've actually started living better, it's just that we haven't noticed this yet, so very often we just put our TVs on mute during the president's address and wait until he's done with his fairytale to finally move on to champagne, sandwiches with sprats, and a traditional New Year's salad.

    Tonight it's going to be different. Tonight everyone will honestly answer themselves an important question: who am I? A president of Ukraine, a successful lawyer, an ordinary housewife, a philosophy department student from Kyiv Mohyla Academy, or an agronomist from Cherkasy region? Who am I? A former photographer protecting the country in the East? An ex- physicist now washing dishes in Italy? A former chemist building a skyscraper in Novosibirsk [in Russia]? A Donetsk doctor who moved and started his own practice? Or a teacher from Luhansk who moved, worked as a taxi driver for a couple of years, and then went back? Who am I? The one who has lived abroad for ten years, loving Ukraine on the Internet? The one who lost everything in Crimea and started everything from scratch in Kharkiv? An ІТ guy seeking to leave the country? Or a prisoner who had dreamed of returning home?

    Who am I? An Ivano-Frankivsk native defending their native language? A native of Gurzuf [in Crimea]who protects their native language? A resident of Berehove [in Zakarpattia] who protects their native language? Or a resident of Kramatorsk who speaks their native language? The one who mastered Ukrainian? Because it’s normal to know the state language. The one who doesn't want to learn it? Who am I? The one who pays taxes? The one who cuts other cars on the road? A dog keeper? Red? Muslim? Hearing-impaired? Hating olives? Liberal? Excelling student? Didn't watch Game of Thrones? Sanguine? Vegan? Capricorn? Not offering a seat to anyone on subway? Blood donor? Turned down plastic? It's each of them. These are all Ukrainians. This is the way they are. We're not perfect, we're no saints. That's because we're only human. We're human beings. We have our flaws and quirks. But our passports don't say whether we're the right kind of Ukrainians or a wrong one. There's no entry there, saying "patriot", "Maloros" [a derogatory term used to describe a Ukrainian native with no national identity], "vatnik" [a derogatory term for a pro-Russian citizen] or "Banderite" [a derogatory term for a Ukrainian nationalist]. It says: "Citizen of Ukraine", who has rights and obligations. We are all very different.

    So who are we? Is it 73% who chose the president or 25% who can't stand him? Is it those who didn't go to the polls? Is it those who celebrate Christmas on December 25 or those who do so on January 7? Is it those who have known each other for ages or those who only met in 2014? Is it those who made the world's largest aircraft or those who fail to buckle up in their cars? Do we read Zhadan or listen to Maruv? Do we watch [a Soviet movie] "Irony of Fate" or "Home Alone"? Do we root for Dynamo or Shakhtar? Or do we root together for Lomachenko and Usyk? Is it those who celebrate March 8 or, on the contrary, those who see it as a relic of the Soviet times? Do we go to church on Sunday or do nothing on Saturday? We are the ones who say: "Ya tebe kohayu " ["I love you" in Ukrainian] or "Ya tebia liubliu." ["I love you" in Russian]. This is all us.

    So, as different as we are, how are we supposed to live together? Should we fence off? Should we put up a huge fence? Who convinced us that our differences matter? What if it's not so? Just think about it: is there really little that unites us? We are equally proud of the great Ukrainians. Would we no longer respect them if we knew whom Shevchenko or Lesia Ukrainka voted for in the elections? If Skovoroda or Khmelnytsky had different views on NATO? Would it be important to us, which church Kadeniuk and Lobanovsky would go to or what would Antonov or Korolyov think about customs clearance of imported cars, or what's Stupka and Bykov's attitude toward the "Normandy format"? We value them for something else, because we all really value something else.

    We were equally happy when our [football] team made it to Euro. We laugh the same way when we drive on a neatly-paved road. We rejoice equally when our first child is born, no matter if it's a boy or a girl. We are happy when we are in love – both in Sloviansk [in eastern Ukraine] and in Drohobych [in western Ukraine]. And crosses on the graves of our soldiers, be it in Ternopil or Kryvyi Rih, don't compete in patriotism. And when our sailors and captives came back home, we cried with happiness – Ukrainian speakers and Russian speakers, ordinary housewives and successful lawyers, as well as the president of Ukraine.

    There are many episodes in our history that unite us. And we learned to be a united country occasionally. This year, we need to be a united country every day. This must become our national idea: to learn to live together with respect, for the future of your country. After all, we see it the same way – a successful and prosperous country where there is no war, a country that has brought back its people and its territories. Where the name of the street doesn't matter because it is lit and paved. Where it makes no difference, at which monument you're waiting for the girl you love. If we see our future in the same way, it should unite us.

    Dear Ukrainians, in the new 2020, I wish all of us to respect each other, to be healthy, prosperous, and to have many reasons to smile. I wish everyone to have a good rest, sleep, not overeat, and, of course, be slightly and pleasantly dizzy in the morning. May we all have peace! Let's remember that loving Ukraine means loving all Ukrainians, no matter in what corner of our country they were born."
    So the criticism of this 'message' is that is from the mundane (why no Ukrainian flag in the picture?) to what he did not speak about - notably the soldiers at the front or any mention of those living under occupation or even the war. But more importantly his seeming belittling of the national identity at a time when it clearly matters in his ending words "Where the name of the street doesn't matter because it's lit and paved. Where it makes no difference at which moment you are waiting for the girl you love." Well this is fundamentally misguided in a war in which Moscow says claims the Ukrainian history and so ownership of Ukraine as 'the same people', where they claim the right to defend 'Russian speakers' almost anywhere with armed force identity is fundamental. I know native Muscovite speakers who refuse to speak it any longer and myself spoke better Muscovite than Ukrainian in 2013 but now can speak, read and write Ukrainian fairly fluently. Does he not recall the mass demolition of the Lenin statues? What if I built a statue of Stalin to celebrate the Holodomor? Would it matter? Damn right it would because symbols have meaning, Ukraine is at war (which he forgot in his neo Cartesian advert), that the sons, fathers, daughters, even mothers have died for their homeland and their sacrifice for our liberty - for all of Europe's liberty - demand the honour and respect of us all rather some symbol of nothing or of the enemy. This notion that names and symbols do not matter is just wrong.


    A joke I heard about this suggests that when 'Ze' dies we mark his gravestone "Some guy".

  8. #413
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    We understand that Medvedev's entire Muscovite 'Government' has resigned following Putin's earlier 'State of the Union' address (see; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_JHi4LKfT_A).

    This follows recent reports that Kadyrov has recently 'temporarily' been 'incapacitated' and so appointed one of his goons to take charge; https://www.rferl.org/a/chechen-lead.../30379057.html

    Something is going on but only time will tell what.
    Last edited by snapper; 15 Jan 20, at 16:26.

  9. #414
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    A couple of interesting talking points recently here in the merry old Clownocracy of President 'Ze':

    First this; https://novynarnia.com/2020/01/20/ad...direktora-dbr/

    The first line of this article for those who have no Ukrainian means "Former lawyer of Viktor Yanukovych Alexander Babikov became the deputy director of the State Bureau of Investigation." So this guy, Alexander Babikov, has been appointed to find and prosecute those who killed the protesters on Maidan and he was Yanukovych's lawyer? As you can imagine many view this as a conflict of interest to say the least. In the same theme there is a proposed law to allow the SBU (akin to the FBI or MI5 in the UK) the right to take over any investigation and decide whether or not to prosecute, this despite an earlier stated desire of the Government to have the SBU separated from any prosecution procedure; get the evidence and submit it to the Prosecutor General, who will then decide if the evidence warrants prosecution or not, was to have been the model but now reversed. Knowing people in the SBU they do not appreciate this reverse.

    The second case of which my friends and colleagues have taken exception is a peculiar decision by the UK to put the Ukrainian 'tryzub';

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    on the list of "extremist symbols". This is a bit like Ukraine saying the same of the coat of arms of Kent (in the UK). It is a coat of arms of the early Knaz (Princes or Kings) of Kyivan Rus dating back to the 800s AD much like the Kentish white horse derived from the legends of Hengist and Horsa (another 'divine twins' myth as in Romulus and Remus) which derives from the same time period (or maybe the Kentish 'invasion' being slightly earlier). What the hell are the UK terrorist authorities on? The British embassy in Kyiv has issued an apology but it is not said that this 'classification' of the tryzub as an 'extremist symbol' will be rescinded. Yet Ukrainians today are still under fire in defence of all of all Europe - one died yesterday. So quite rightly in my view my friends and colleagues require this idiotic decision by the UK authorities be reversed. Believe it or not the Ukrainian people are an old nation and their symbols of the ancient royalty should not be called extremist when they are invaded by their neighbour.

  10. #415
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    So I have left my 'Ukraine update' far too long due to other duties and so I am hoping I get the time lines right from memory. Forgive me if some issues seem to interfere with subsequent ones but they do - the nature of this life is that all is connected.

    So first of all we had a 'secret recording' released to the public in which the Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk saying that the President Volodymyr Zelensky "didn't know anything about economics". Honcharuk however continues to carry the can for subsequent shambles mostly.

    A second 'secret recording', while we on this topic, this back in November last year, on the telegram channel "Trubu prorvalo" (Telegram being a message service akin to Sype and "Trubu prorvalo" meaning literally 'burst pipe') alleged that the then Head of the Presidential Administration, Andrii Bogdan (the former lawyer of oligarch Kolomoisky on who's TV channel the now President 'Ze's' TV show was aired) had pushed for legal cases to be brought officials in the former Government; https://censor.net.ua/en/resonance/3...cabinet_leaked .....oh dear. But Kolomoisky has a grudge against Poroshenko for going after him first in the gas transport company Ukransneft, which Kolomoisky's thugs briefly occupied the HQ of (and destroyed alot of documents while there I am told) and secondly for the privatisation of Privatbant, the largest bank in Ukraine which was owned by the 'oligarch' which was in serious jeopardy having been used as Kolomoisky's 'piggy bank' without him putting his own savings in it (naturally Cyprus, Switzerland and London for himself).

    So all this was kind of known - not so much in the villages of course - but among the metropolitan 'elite' in Kyiv and other cities that follow such matters. Something had to give - many of us (for I was one) had protested as the previous pages will testify my opposition to Andrii Bohdan's appointment in the first place (within 4 days 25,000 Ukrainians signed an electronic petition for the dismissal of Bohdan from this post claiming he could not have been appointed because he falls under Lustration laws because of his work for the Azarov Government) so it was technically illegal from the start. But now there was blood (so to speak) - clear wrong doing. Bohdan was then duly dismissed by the Clown President on 11 February and was replaced by Andriy Yermak. One step forward and another back is the way we roll here under the Clown.

    So Yermak is a lawyer by trade and has business 'friends' in Muscovy who are personal pals with Putin (see; https://112.international/politics/r...als-44249.html). Also Yermak was allegedly the 'point person' for contacts with Guiliani and Volker and involved (doubtless via his 'business colleagues') with the prisoner exchanges. If I and most of my colleagues and friends didn't trust Bohdan Yermak was worse - which shortly later became true for a brave few.


    So first it became quickly clear that Yermak's 'appeasement policy' agreed with the Clown President's when we heard rumours (leaks from the Presidential team) that Ukraine might be prepared to trade a resumption of water supply to occupied Crimea for a 'deal' on Donbass; exactly what 'deal' was (or was not) suggested for Donbass was not revealed to us mere hoi poli who serve in the Government. Fine but are we relinquishing our rightful claim to Crimea? I personally and most Ukrainians are not willing to do so - never give a step or they will take more and then try to 'normalise' things for further concessions. No! We know this lesson well from our history in Poland, Ukraine and all the other nations they have previously (and now seek again to) enslave. This was Yermak's first act as it were; https://ukranews.com/en/news/683569-...-withdrawal-of In other words Yermak 'floated' the idea. It sank among the military in particular faster than a stone.

    Next came a Conference (the Munich Security Conference for 'bigwigs' who like talking but know sh*t) where our marvelous President was happy to appear and be photographed and gave a speech calling for 'elections' in the occupied areas in October! How? Are all Muscovite forces about to withdraw if you give occupied Crimea water? Will their militia's disperse? How will we treat the guilty? No details on any of these naturally - just broad statements without understanding of any sort.

    This 'well wishing' sadly went what in England they sometimes called "to bo**ocks" on the 18th February when were attacked at the front via one the areas we had withdrawn our forces from in regard to the 'Steinmeir formula' (which the Clown President had insisted be implemented so he could get his 'Normandy Format' in Paris last December). This area is called Zolote and is Luhansk oblast (like a County in England or a Province in France):

    This morning the press service of the Ukrainian military-lead Joint-Forces Operation (JFO) reported an attack of Russia-controlled military formations on Ukrainian positions near four settlements at the Bakhmut Highway in Luhansk Oblast. An artillery preparation was followed by a break-through attempt and Ukrainian troops have suffered losses. Later the JFO Staff posted an update stating that the offensive attempt failed as Ukrainian troops suppressed it. Officially, one Ukrainian soldier was killed, four more were wounded in action.
    The area you can see on a map here http://euromaidanpress.com/2020/02/1...blast-updated/ Allegedly they called for a ceasefire at 10pm but this weekend fighting along Bakhmut road.

    It is sometimes tragic that other, honest patriots defending their families die, that a point must be proved but sadly in this proved to the case with our Clown in Chief and his appeasement plans. One lookout point and a village was lost in this initial combat of the 18th it later transpired; reservists that were willing were asked to rejoin presumably without the Clown's knowing (or caring). The President that morning (before the initial battle ended at 10pm allegedly) said "The situation is completely controlled by our army. We are confidently approaching the end of the war and peace." Nothing of course have been further from the truth for those fighting to defend their land and lives at that very moment most of whom are part of the 72nd Mechanized Brigade.

    The outrage was, and continues to be, significant;

    "Zelenskyy claims that today's escalation in Luhansk is an attempt to derail the peace process. No Mr President it is not! It is a sign that your steps (I would not deem to call them a strategy) are a complete failure. Zelenskyy has never understood the war." I read in one newspaper.

    "I think this is a moment of truth for Ukraine. Everyone should see that the president is an empty place, green, unworthy of being president." I read from an expat Ukrainian with military experience.

    Back to the ground timeline though in Zolote (which translates directly as Gold), the 'strategic reserve' having assembled by the morning of the 19th permission was allegedly refused for it and the 72nd in position to regain the territory lost the previous day. I cannot swear that this is truth in all honesty but no counter attack went ahead for some reason or another after it had been prepared, which I know for a fact. Why? Nobody in this "Servant of the People" Government is willing or perhaps able to say.

    It all stems from a fatal non understanding on behalf of the Clown President; he never understood the war or the Chekist Mafia regime in Muscovy. Why should he have done? He worked in Muscovy, no doubt made friends, was a comedian. Though I am bad at some elections by later regretting my vote (as in PiS in Poland) even I could see this guy for the vapid space he is after meeting him before the election (he also insulted my Husband when he asked about the sale of agricultural land, currently not permitted. My Husband being a farmer he replied "I shall pray for goats and crops" as if it were a joke). We have a vapid appeaser as Clown in chief and the systematic reluctance to do anything about the ongoing war and the liberation of our occupied territory sinks through from the top (a 'fish rots from the head' in the American expression).

    Meanwhile Belarus and Lukashenka are increasingly pressed into the 'Union State' or absorption by 'the Muscovite Empire' which would turn our flank in the north west. Fortunately I am not in charge of the sh*t show and am currently in a bother for daring to rejoin when willing reservists were asked to do so - c'est la vie. The polls show public opinion increasingly turning against the Clown so we may yet see him try to play the tiger.
    Last edited by snapper; 25 Feb 20, at 06:45.

  11. #416
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    Bellingcat investigation into 'Unit 29155' (aka Vympel) and Egor Gordienko (aka Georgy Aleksandrovich Gorshkov) who until recently was allegedly posing as third Secretary of the Muscovite delegation to the WTO in Geneva. This comes a day after the attempted murder (assassination?) of a Chechen blogger, Tumso Abdurakhmanov, in Poland.

    https://www.bellingcat.com/news/2020...-a-red-notice/

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/20...-bid-in-poland

  12. #417
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    Now comes the time I hate; trying to explain wtf is going on here when to be honest not a soul knows but I will do my best...

    So let me deal with the rehash of the Ukrainian Government first. Only Avakov (the Minister of the Interior and much critised for corruption; his son for example was not prosecuted for killing two people when driving drunk) kept his place; presumably he knows where the bodies are buried or something.

    The new PM, Denys Shmygal (or Smeagol as his detractors call him), is now revealed to have worked for Rinat Akhmetov's DTEK company (Akhmetov being the richest 'oligarch' in Ukraine who got Yanukovych out) during a rip off known as 'Rotterdam+'. So what was the 'Rotterdam+' scam? So there was once a court case in Rotterdam regarding the costs of transport of fuel (coal in those times) and whether the buyer should pay or the seller for transportation costs. So this court long ago decided it was fair that the buyer should pay the cost of transport from Rotterdam. So Akhmetov (who owns most of the coal mines in occupied Donbass) decided this was an excellent precedent and charged his purchasers (mostly the State) for transportation cost from Rotterdam even if it was going down the road. Some of course objected but that ended quickly when one of the chief objectors died in a car bomb in 2012. Nobody has yet been charged for this case.

    The new FM is Dmytro Kuleba who is actually a career diplomat but he is the best of the bunch. I am not joking arrests for protesting have started here which is in itself a national disgrace. The dismissal of the Prosecutor General (whom all regarded as honest) and his speech on it; "I came into this Office to dismiss the dark forces of the past but they have regathered" (or along those lines) bode ill. They have not yet managed to get rid of Artem Sytnyk, who runs NABU (National Anticorruption Bureau of Ukraine) but are trying. At least 7 of the Ministers in the new Government served under Yanukovych. Melinda Haring, the deputy head of the Atlantic Council Eurasia Programme said "it is hard to see anything good coming from this" (see; https://www.ecfr.eu/article/commenta...ment_reshuffle)

    Results so far; * Ukraine’s 2028 dollar bond yield surges 1.7 percentage points today to 11.1%; (= Ukraine has lost access to international financial markets).
    * Hryvnia drops 1.1% to 26.01/USD, the weakest since July 2019 (Bloomberg)

    Great 'servant of the people' (Zelensky's Political Party) job.

    Shall write about Moscow events and Putin's contrived continuance in power later as my small people are squeaking.

  13. #418
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    Now comes the time I hate; trying to explain wtf is going on here when to be honest not a soul knows but I will do my best...

    So let me deal with the rehash of the Ukrainian Government first. Only Avakov (the Minister of the Interior and much critised for corruption; his son for example was not prosecuted for killing two people when driving drunk) kept his place; presumably he knows where the bodies are buried or something.

    The new PM, Denys Shmygal (or Smeagol as his detractors call him), is now revealed to have worked for Rinat Akhmetov's DTEK company (Akhmetov being the richest 'oligarch' in Ukraine who got Yanukovych out) during a rip off known as 'Rotterdam+'. So what was the 'Rotterdam+' scam? So there was once a court case in Rotterdam regarding the costs of transport of fuel (coal in those times) and whether the buyer should pay or the seller for transportation costs. So this court long ago decided it was fair that the buyer should pay the cost of transport from Rotterdam. So Akhmetov (who owns most of the coal mines in occupied Donbass) decided this was an excellent precedent and charged his purchasers (mostly the State) for transportation cost from Rotterdam even if it was going down the road. Some of course objected but that ended quickly when one of the chief objectors died in a car bomb in 2012. Nobody has yet been charged for this case.

    The new FM is Dmytro Kuleba who is actually a career diplomat but he is the best of the bunch. I am not joking arrests for protesting have started here which is in itself a national disgrace. The dismissal of the Prosecutor General (whom all regarded as honest) and his speech on it; "I came into this Office to dismiss the dark forces of the past but they have regathered" (or along those lines) bode ill. They have not yet managed to get rid of Artem Sytnyk, who runs NABU (National Anticorruption Bureau of Ukraine) but are trying. At least 7 of the Ministers in the new Government served under Yanukovych. Melinda Haring, the deputy head of the Atlantic Council Eurasia Programme said "it is hard to see anything good coming from this" (see; https://www.ecfr.eu/article/commenta...ment_reshuffle)

    Results so far; * Ukraine’s 2028 dollar bond yield surges 1.7 percentage points today to 11.1%; (= Ukraine has lost access to international financial markets).
    * Hryvnia drops 1.1% to 26.01/USD, the weakest since July 2019 (Bloomberg)

    Great 'servant of the people' (Zelensky's Political Party) job.

    Shall write about Moscow events and Putin's contrived continuance in power later as my small people are squeaking.

  14. #419
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    Meanwhile back in Ukraine James Sherr (Chatham House) sums things up:



    President Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s dream ended on 4 March. On that date he dismissed ten of the most reformist ministers of his still newly formed government.

    The sacking of Prime Minister Oleksiy Honcharuk, barely six months after his appointment in August 2019 is not unprecedented. President Viktor Yushchenko had dismissed his own Prime Minister, Yulia Tymoshenko eight months after she was appointed in January 2005. But it is more shocking. Personal tensions and policy differences between Yushchenko and Tymoshenko had been mounting, and they were hardly unconcealed. But by repudiating an entire cabinet, doing so with meagre justification and replacing them with people of limited stature and tarnished reputations, Zelenskiy has effectively repudiated himself, if not in his own eyes, then in the eyes of many who believed in him.

    On 11 March, he broke faith with others. On that date, his new Chief of Staff, Andriy Yermak, along with former President Leonid Kuchma and Russia’s well-seasoned, but newly appointed plenipotentiary for the Donbas conflict, Dmitriy Kozak, signed a ‘protocol’ that in violation of all ‘red lines’ and precedents, envisages establishing a Consultative Council, granting co-equal status to Ukraine’s state representatives and Russia’s proxies in the unrecognised Donetsk and Luhansk ‘peoples republics’. The relationship between these two events is not merely circumstantial, and it could well evolve in ways detrimental not only to the standing of President Zelenskiy but the fundamental national interests of Ukraine.

    On the face of it, these unsettling events not only vindicate those who from the start regarded Zelenskiy as all show and no substance; they add credibility to those who always regarded him as a ‘Russian project’. But in reality, they have exposed shortcomings of character rather than conspiracy and connivance, along with external pressures that have been poorly assessed and incompetently managed.

    What is more, the reformist course set by the outgoing cabinet was in need of correction. Honcharuk not only promised what could not be delivered (e.g. 40 percent economic growth in five years), he employed a Western template to overcome a system that will not be broken without a more complex algorithm. Moreover, reform is not always the most urgent task. The recently appointed and now dismissed Minister of Defence, Andriy Zahorodniuk, widely esteemed in Washington and NATO HQ, studied law in Kyiv, graduated from Warwick and Oxford universities and was a successful entrepreneur before capably leading the MOD’s Reform Project Office between 2015-2017. He had all the makings of a brilliant peacetime defence minister, but Ukraine is a country at war. Zahorodniuk’s successor, Lt Gen (retd) Andriy Taran, is a graduate of the Military Academy of Air Defence of the Ground Forces, served in the MOD Main Intelligence Directorate and was eventually appointed Ukraine’s representative to the Joint Coordination and Control Centre in Donbas. On top of this, he received a degree in National Resource Strategy at the National Defence University in Washington.

    All of this said, there is a world of difference between correcting the course of a government and dismissing it when its work has hardly begun. It accomplished a considerable amount on its brief watch: in the macro-economy, the regulatory framework and in state enterprise management. Such reforms are not enough to boost ratings when politicians need them (Zelenskiy’s trust rating dropped from 80 to 50 per cent between September and February). Yet they were becoming more than enough for Ukraine’s oligarchs, not only the proverbial Kolomoyskiy but Rinat Akhmetov, whom no one has successfully crossed. As these waves converged, Zelenskiy tossed the crew off the ship.

    The fact that he did not anticipate this moment and panicked when it arose already resolves one enigma of his presidency. As a campaign slogan, ‘breaking the system’ is a winner. As a programme of government, it is a protracted, hazardous and thankless task. In pursuit of this task, popularity is irrelevant, for it surely will be lost. On the morrow of his election, we asked, ‘does Zelenskiy possess the mettle and will to take on this challenge?’ [icds.ee/what-lies-ahead-for-ukraine/] So far, the answer appears to be no.

    Panic, like drunkenness, produces a nasty hangover. The moment that a government of respected figures was replaced by a government of unknowns, investor confidence collapsed. No sooner did this reality emerge than another one arose: the corona virus, whose impact on Ukraine’s economy will be significant if it is well managed, and devastating if it is not. The combination of these factors makes release of the $5.5 bn IMF package vital and urgent. Yet the IMF will not budge from its core conditions: establishment of a private land market and a copper plated banking system, immune from predators like Kolomoyskiy. But these conditions will be more difficult to meet than before because the interests that oppose them are now stronger and the ministers committed to meeting them have been replaced by new ministers who show far less understanding of the IMF’s importance.

    What is more, Zelenskiy’s Servant of the People faction is no longer united. To secure a vote of no confidence in his highly respected Prosecutor General, Ruslan Riaboshapka, Zelenskiy had to rely upon the Opposition Platform – For Life, led by Moscow’s inveterate de facto plenipotentiary in Ukraine, Viktor Medvedchuk. That possibly explains why Zelenskiy did nothing to impede Medvedchuk when he brought a delegation of six Opposition Platform MPs to Moscow in order to stitch together with Putin a framework for a new interparliamentary body on the conflict. [euromaidanpress.com/2020/03/13/shady-agreements-re…] That legislative dimension would complement the new inter-governmental format agreed between Yermak and Kozak that originally had been scheduled for final approval on 25 March.

    But Zelenskiy’s concessions to Moscow were hardly pre-ordained. He has ample reason to oppose Russia’s goals in Ukraine, and up until now, he has done so. The December Paris meeting of the four-party Normandy format was a personal triumph. Not only did Zelenskiy reiterate Ukraine’s long-standing red lines, he rightly insisted that the Ukrainian people would accept nothing less. Moreover, he added new conditions more stringent than those set out in the February 2015 Minsk-II accords: the border will need to revert to Ukraine’s control before elections take place in the occupied zones, and representatives of 1.6 million displaced Ukrainians will need to agree the modalities of those elections and secure the rights of their former inhabitants to take part in them. If Zelenskiy’s performance then was nothing but show, one must also suppose that Putin’s moroseness was also for show, as well the temper tantrum of his then Donbas kurator, Vyacheslav Surkov, witnessed by Zelenskiy’s advisers. Yet that was then, and this is now.

    To attribute today’s change of policy to unfavourable parliamentary arithmetic would be too superficial by far. Zelenskiy has no fondness for Russia. But unlike most of his predecessors, he has never grasped the existential nature of the threat that it poses. Like his counterpart in Paris, Emmanuel Macron, he believes that Putin would like to find a way out of the conflict and that disengagement zones, prisoner exchanges and other conciliatory measures will provide that way out. Already Zelenskiy has been given two sharp warnings that this is not so. Following the Normandy summit, Putin suddenly demanded the inclusion of five members of Yanukovych’s dreaded Berkut in an already agreed prisoner exchange. These personnel, charged with the murder of protestors in the Euromaidan, have no relationship to the present conflict, and Kyiv is not an occupied zone. Oblivious of creating a possible precedent for Russia to intervene directly in matters of domestic Ukrainian jurisdiction, Zelenskiy concurred. Then on 18 February, Russia and proxy forces launched a massive bombardment of Ukrainian forces deployed on the perimeter of a newly established disengagement zone. Yet instead of responding to this display of contempt towards his conciliation strategy, Zelenskiy vowed that this ‘provocation’ would not deflect him from it.

    In these matters, Zelenskiy is now being guided by his new chief of staff, Head of the Presidential Office, Andriy Yermak, a man of the utmost flexibility of principle, with connections in Russia and back channels to its decision-makers. Through these channels, Zelenskiy is being advised about what would be helpful and what would not (‘don’t mention Crimea’). Ukraine’s Normandy partners, Germany and France, have neither imposed unsound concessions upon Zelenskiy nor counselled against them. By not doing the latter, they have ignored their own red lines and not only Ukraine’s. In the assessment of Ukraine’s former Foreign Minister Pavel Klimkin, they have effectively reduced the level of their support to Ukraine.

    In sum, the fundamental shortcomings of Zelenskiy’s presidential team – an absence of state administrative culture, a dearth of economic knowledge, a shallow understanding of Russia and an over-reliance upon their own inbred circle – have produced their first baleful deserts. There is endless room for the learning curve to advance, and already there are signs that it is doing so. On 24 March, Zelenskiy submitted the necessary banking legislation to Ukraine’s parliament. But what Zelenskiy requires even more than such steps is steadfastness and courage. So far, these qualities have not been visible.

  15. #420
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    A pretty good Cepa report called ONE FLANK, ONE THREAT, ONE PRESENCEA Strategy for NATO’s Eastern Flank: https://1f3d3593-8810-425c-bc7f-8988...6aca6c87d9.pdf

    The authors (including General Ben Hodges) explaining it:



    Probably the most honest and realistic assessment of the position I have heard or read since Breedlove.

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