Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
February 12, 2015

Minsk 2.0 Is Just The Pause Button

After 15 hours of negotiations in Minsk Poroshenko, Putin, Merkel and Hollande achieved a renewal, with a few changes, of the Minsk 1.0 ceasefire for Ukraine framed as the new Minsk 2.0 ceasefire. The two heads of the federalists in Donetsk and Lughanks also signed the agreement. There was no common press conference to announce the deal.

The terms, as far as I can tell, are nearly the same as in Minsk 1.0. RT.com twittered the main points:

1.Ceasefire 2.Heavy weapons 3.Monitoring (OSCE) incl satellites & drones 4. Regional elections & self-gov 5. 'special status' in 30 days 6. POWs 7.Humanitarian corridors 8.Pensions & social ties 9.Kiev controls borders 10. Foreign fighters out 11. Disarm irregulars 12. reform by end 2015, decentralization 13.Donbass elections under 3-party contact group (3PCG) 14.3PCG to intensify activities

The full, original text in Russian is here, a preliminary English translation here. There is also a Declaration of Minsk in support of the "Package of Measures for the Implementation of the Minsk Agreements" from the German and French side.

The actual ceasefire will start on February 15. We can expect some heavy fighting up to the last minute as each side will try to consolidate its position. There will surely be different interpretations of the clauses on both sides. It is also questionable if the paramilitary groups, especially on the Ukrainian state side, will follow orders to cease fighting.

The Ukrainian President Poroshenko seems to have severe illusions. As the Russian President Putin mentioned in his short press conference (video) Poroshenko does not believe that his several thousand troops in Debaltsevo are surrounded and cut off. That is ludicrous as even major, though unofficial sources on the Ukrainian side had confirmed the closing of the cauldron two days ago. It seems that the military leaders of the Ukrainian army do not tell him what is really happening in the field. Putin also said that the federalist expect the Ukrainian troops in the cauldron to put down their arms. Will they be given orders to do so or will they be ordered to fight on?

The U.S. inserted itself into the negotiation via the International Monetary Fund which it controls. The IMF announced new $17 billion plan for Ukraine, over four years, two hours before the negotiations ended. That was the U.S. joker telling Poroshenko that he would get enough money to continue fighting and does not have to give up any position. Merkel and Hollande, who tired to wring more concessions out of Poroshenko, must have fumed at that news.

For the moment the Minsk 2.0 plan is welcome relief. This certainly for the people in Donetsk and Luhanks who are under constant Ukrainian artillery fire. The EU countries will be happy that the pressure for new sanctions is off and the U.S. hawks will have to shelf their "arm Ukraine" campaign for now. But the ceasefire does not solve the main questions. The radical constituency of the Ukraine coup government will demand more "punishment" of the east while the people there will, without more representation, reject any demands from the central government.

We can therefore expect that the fighting will stop in the short term only. The violent conflict will likely resume in a month or two or so.

Posted by b on February 12, 2015 at 06:28 AM | Permalink

Comments
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Poroshenko is exactly what Putin ordered, otherwise he'd be dead right about now. Yes, the violent conflict will continue. This is just the beginning of a long slog. Those who get bogged down in the finite details of every skirmish and negotiation will lose sight of the forrest for the trees.

Posted by: Cold N. Holefield | Feb 12, 2015 6:48:47 AM | 1

The new Minsk agreement contains this - new - clause

Leaders share the conviction that improved cooperation between the EU, Ukraine and Russia will be conducive to the crisis settlement. To this end, they endorse the continuation of trilateral talks between the EU, Ukraine and Russia on energy issues in order to achieve follow-up stages to the gas winter package.

They also support trilateral talks between the EU, Ukraine and Russia in order to achieve practical solutions to concerns raised by Russia with regards to the implementation of the Deep and Comprehensive Free Trade Agreement between Ukraine and the EU.

Leaders remain committed to the vision of a joint humanitarian and economic space from the Atlantic to the Pacific based upon full respect for international law and the OSCE principles.

Leaders will remain committed to the implementation of the Minsk Agreements. To this end, they agree to establish an oversight mechanism in the Normandy format which will convene at regular intervals, in principle on the level of senior officials from the foreign ministries.

They own it now - together. The backdrop of Minsk I was "Russia has to do more".

Posted by: somebody | Feb 12, 2015 7:30:01 AM | 2

I see nothing good coming out of it, same as with Minsk 1.0. Shelling of cities wont end, hence no actual relief for civilians. Ukies will reinforce their positions even better (compare how difficult fighting for federalists was now, and how many lives were lost compared to 1st ceasefire...), will regroup and train tens of thousands of new cannon-fodder. If anything, spring fighting will be even worse for federalists, and if Ukies learn from their mistakes and finally clean-up commanding mess, next war phase will be more brutal.

So far everything is going exactly as Strelkov predicted, so much for some MoA posters opinions how Minsk 1.0 was great for federalists... Neither will be Minsk 2.0.

Posted by: Harry | Feb 12, 2015 7:31:46 AM | 3

Posted by: Harry | Feb 12, 2015 7:31:46 AM | 3

Of course not. Neither is Minsk 2 good for Poroshenko. But it is good for Lukashenko, Russia, Germany and France.

Posted by: somebody | Feb 12, 2015 7:34:19 AM | 4

Does Minsk 2.0 contain any provision for reporting or investigating cease fire violations especially those which involve attacks against civilians? Because otherwise no progress has actually been accomplished. It seems to me that both US and Russia have significant capabilities through the use of satellite imagery to expose lies and contradictions concerning violations.

Posted by: gersen | Feb 12, 2015 7:56:29 AM | 5

The main sponsor of the terrorist groups Konstantin Malofeev just got a delicate reminder to stay silent from Kremlin, so it might be the case that the peace initiative is indeed legitimate this time. Malofeev is one of the main sponsors of the Eurasian "war party" psychos, employer of Girkin, Boroday and other significant separatist figures.

Posted by: Ulster | Feb 12, 2015 8:05:01 AM | 6

@5 The cease fire is to be monitored by OSCE, which has been monitoring, reporting and investigating cases of artillery use against civilians for the last year. And they did document and condemn indiscriminate use of artillery both by Ukrainian and Russian side many times. The problem was that both sides were just ignoring these reports. Ukraine was saying they're "just responding" to Russian fire, and Russian side was coming up with countless science-fiction theories where projectiles make magical U-turns to arrive from the east while actually being fired from the west. So OSCE is going to continue the monitoring mission, nothing changes here. It's what the sides of the conflict will do that really matters for the civilians.

Posted by: Ulster | Feb 12, 2015 8:12:07 AM | 7

Just a reminder. Russia plays for keeps ...

April 10, 2010 NY Times

"WARSAW — A plane carrying the Polish president and dozens of the country’s top political and military leaders to the site of a Soviet massacre of Polish officers in World War II crashed in western Russia on Saturday, killing everyone on board"


"Russian emergency officials said 97 people were killed. They included Poland’s deputy foreign minister and a dozen members of Parliament, the chiefs of the army and the navy, and the president of the national bank. They included Anna Walentynowicz, 80, the former dock worker whose firing in 1980 set off the Solidarity strike that ultimately overthrew Polish Communism, as well as relatives of victims of the massacre that they were on their way to commemorate."

RT Oct 29, 2012

"Polish parliamentary investigation into President’s Lech Kaczynski plane crash in Smolensk in 2010 is considering witness protection: A flight engineer set to deliver critical testimony was found hanged in his house in Warsaw.

­The body of Remigiusz Muś, a 42-year-old aviation engineer, was found by his wife in the cellar of their house in the suburbs of the Polish capital at around 11:30pm local time on Saturday. She called an ambulance and attempted to resuscitate her husband, but medics pronounced him dead as soon as they arrived."

Wonder if Porkyshenko was wearing Depends (adult diaper) when ho shook Vlad's hand?

Posted by: Alberto | Feb 12, 2015 8:21:56 AM | 8

Guys, guys...
Mister Vladimir is a grand diplomat...give the man some credit, will ya?!

Listen to this...Ukraine HAS to:
1.Restore all social payments, pensions etc. (which means they pay for the whole Donbas region)
2.Border control may only start AFTER local elections read on...

CONSTITUTIONAL REFORM!!!
The said reform has an addendum, which allows NAF to:
- create own ruling structures (a quasi-state)
- create a "people's militia" (have their own army basically)
- 'deputies and officials' of these "special status™" regions can't have their status revoked prematurely by any authority (including court rulings).

Basically legalizing the seps to (after said elections) have their own military forces, ruling structure etc. It's basically - a state within a state (much like Bosnia).

So, yeah - I'd say this is NOT a good deal - this is an EXCELLENT deal!

Posted by: S-true | Feb 12, 2015 8:39:23 AM | 9

P.S.

Being the pessimist that I am, I don't really think that Ukraine (read: the USSA) will honor the agreement. If they do though - it's game over, and the USSA has to find another spot to attack Russia...which I very well think will happen

Posted by: S-true | Feb 12, 2015 8:42:57 AM | 10

"Ukraine to find another spot to attack Russia" sounds just like "Finland attacking USSR" in 1939.

Posted by: Ulster | Feb 12, 2015 8:46:52 AM | 11

@ S-true | 9

None of what you posted will happen. If you believe it will - I have bridges to sell, cheap! Hell, even give you Big Ben as a bonus :)

Basically its a worthless paper, which only has one goal achieved - NAF forces advance stopped, while Ukies will regroup and resume offensive in spring with even more NAF loses and Novorossia cities destroyed. Oh, and if anyone thinks Ukies will remove their artillery and stop bombing NAF cities during ceasefire - I have even more bridges to sell to you :)

Posted by: Harry | Feb 12, 2015 8:48:33 AM | 12

@ Harry
Agreed mate, read my comment No. 10

Posted by: S-true | Feb 12, 2015 8:50:09 AM | 13

"... the ruthless neocon hawks 'are not to be trusted'. They probably hope that by the end of the Obama term the IS problem will be eliminated, while they prepare a more willing puppet for the US presidency to follow their plans. Then, they will turn against Russia, China, Iran and anyone is considered an obstacle to their plans."

A temporary turn of 180 degrees by the neocon hawks

Posted by: nmb | Feb 12, 2015 8:52:51 AM | 14

@ S-true | 12

Exactly, and thats not a pessimism, just realism.

@ nmb | 13

They probably hope that by the end of the Obama term the IS problem will be eliminated

I'm sorry, what ISIS problem for neocons? ISIS exclusively attacks US enemies, and promises to attack Iran, Russia and China in the future. So what problem again?

Posted by: Harry | Feb 12, 2015 8:59:00 AM | 15

@#2 -- and did the "leaders" sign the document?

No, I don't think so. Job is left to underlings.

So, ergo, a temporary halt to ensure no avalanche in 'win-lose' dynamics and Ukraine gets some more imaginary IMF-$'s so they don't technically default as a failed state (and perhaps pay some of their Gazprom bills). Hints of Spring emerging soon but EU agriculture can't plant crops with any certainty that Russian markets will be open to them for 2015 harvest. Minsk positives are: (a) less people will die (hopefully); (b) not NATO advance into the Ukraine (for the time being); and (c) Russian hand not forced to move.

Posted by: x | Feb 12, 2015 9:05:56 AM | 16

Idiotic meeting, we need a final peace, not some "ceasfires" that will be broken in days, weeks and then the sanctions will go on again, sigh.

Posted by: Anonymous | Feb 12, 2015 9:06:30 AM | 17

so much for some MoA posters opinions how Minsk 1.0 was great for federalists... Neither will be Minsk 2.0.

Posted by: Harry | Feb 12, 2015 7:31:46 AM | 3

Lets be honest: 99 % of MOA'ers couldn't predict their way out of a wet paper bag

I'm sorry, what ISIS problem for neocons? ISIS exclusively attacks US enemies, and promises to attack Iran, Russia and China in the future. So what problem again?

Posted by: Harry | Feb 12, 2015 8:59:00 AM | 14

Amazing that this STILL needs to be pointed out to people - astounding levels of stupidity still encountered on this subject

(compare how difficult fighting for federalists was now, and how many lives were lost compared to 1st ceasefire...),

Whatever happens in the future, the NovoR's should completely eliminate every Ukie Nazi in the Debaltsevo "cauldron" before Feb 15. Not to do so is a sure recipe for future disaster -

Unless Putin and the NR's intend to use the fate of these Cauldron Nazis as future leverage? - But this seems doubtful since the Junta in Kiev do not seem to give a damn as to the fate of their own troops - it's almost as if, not content with slaughtering as many NR civilians as possible, the Junta also are intent on slaughtering as many of their own troops as possible

-----------

RT Oct 29, 2012

"Polish parliamentary investigation into President’s Lech Kaczynski plane crash in Smolensk in 2010 is considering witness protection: A flight engineer set to deliver critical testimony was found hanged in his house in Warsaw.

­The body of Remigiusz Muś, a 42-year-old aviation engineer, was found by his wife in the cellar of their house in the suburbs of the Polish capital at around 11:30pm local time on Saturday. She called an ambulance and attempted to resuscitate her husband, but medics pronounced him dead as soon as they arrived."

Wonder if Porkyshenko was wearing Depends (adult diaper) when ho shook Vlad's hand?

Posted by: Alberto | Feb 12, 2015 8:21:56 AM | 8

You seem to be implying that the Russians took out that plane with the Polish Prez on board and are now engaged in a cover-up by "suicide"? If so, this is complete nonsense.

Tusk and Sikorsky's crew (Empire/ZioNazi Chaos merchants) are far far more likely to have been the culprits - the Russians gained nothing from that incident while the Empire/ZioNazi scum gained a lot, not least in Anti-Russian propaganda capital

Posted by: Alice In Thunderland | Feb 12, 2015 9:21:03 AM | 18

@11 It's not worthless. Germany and France are now part of a call for a federal arrangement. Poroshenko is much weaker.

If Poroshenko doesn't play ball, Merkel will have to remind him if there isn't money for Greece, Spain, etc...there isn't money for Kiev.

Any broken peace will have U.S. hands all over it. Going into this conference, Putin was yukking it up with Egyptian and Greek rulers. The U.S. wants Russia out of the international arms and energy mmarket. By doubling down, the U.S. is just going to less and less open markets especially after another spectacular failure of NATO led troops. Obama is pushing his war powers act on the same day as a major peace conference without American attendance. Obama and the Pentagon are going to run from Ukraine. Remember the support for America's involvement came from people who didn't know where the Ukraine is.

Posted by: NotTimothyGeithner | Feb 12, 2015 9:41:25 AM | 19

As I said in one of my previous posts on this same topic: The USSA thinks it can pull-out a Croatian one again. I think that's not gonna happen though...or rather - they'll try it, but won't be able to muster it this time around.

What worries me still, is that this might (likely) end up as a nuclear confrontation between west(Israel, USSA, France, and England) and east(Russia, China).
I do hope I'm wrong obviously.

Posted by: S-true | Feb 12, 2015 9:42:25 AM | 20

BBC beginning to tell what they know of Maidan shootings - they found one of the snipers.

Posted by: somebody | Feb 12, 2015 9:44:00 AM | 21

@ somebody

BBC beginning to tell what they know of Maidan shootings - they found one of the snipers.

As per their usual: buried deep in the page, so it's hard to see.
So that 'tomorrow' they can claim 'neutrality'...I see right through them!
Honestly, I trust Goebbels more than the BBC/CNN/Guardian/DT/NBC etc.
Propaganda is worst than Soviet/Nazi times.

(don't even get me started on the German media...Goebbels 2.0 - that lot..tradition, tradition...)

Posted by: S-true | Feb 12, 2015 9:51:14 AM | 22

@21 The story might be fiction, but why would the BBC put this story out? Justification for a policy change and plausible denial. The Ukraine situation may not rock a nation such as the UK, but given the results and Cameron's behavior, stories that will come could seriously endanger his election chances and funding for British intelligence.

Posted by: NotTimothyGeithner | Feb 12, 2015 10:01:05 AM | 23

What worries me still, is that this might (likely) end up as a nuclear confrontation between west(Israel, USSA, France, and England) and east(Russia, China).
I do hope I'm wrong obviously.

Posted by: S-true | Feb 12, 2015 9:42:25 AM | 19

I think you're way off track here


Nuke confrontation does not seem to be the aim, since it is so obviously a Lose-Lose proposition

Forcing the Russians into full on invasion appears to be the aim.

BUT: as long a there is a (mere) "territorial dispute" in Ukraine then the Ukies cannot join NATO (NATO rules of membership prohibit this, and we can see the proof of this with the Georgian/Ossetia situation. The existence of a territorial dispute in Georgia prevents Georgia from joining NATO.)

However were the Russians foolish enough to actually invade and/or annex NovoR, (as some in NovoR seem to want) then legally NATO can claim they then have a right to move right in to Ukraine and settle themselves right on any new Russian frontier, (IF its aim is to overtly insert itself into Ukraine, which I don't think is the aim) because the Russians will have broken the terms of the Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances.

The Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances covers this situation - Both Russia and US have signed this legally binding agreement to "respect the territorial integrity" of Ukraine. As long as the fiction of Ukraine State territorial integrity can be plausibly maintained, however ridiculous such a claim may presently appear to you or I, then legally NATO has a problem

First one to break the terms of that treaty can plausibly be held legally responsible for subsequent events and actions by both sides

Posted by: Alice In Thunderland | Feb 12, 2015 10:11:30 AM | 24

' U.S. hawks will have to shelf their "arm Ukraine" campaign for now '

I don't think so. Remember the succinct statement of the US' position by the Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs ... 'F*ck the EU'. Apparently there was some part of that which the Europeans don't yet (want to) understand.

The US is on MIC/CIA/Cold War auto-pilot. When in doubt fall back to what you know and love. No one is in charge in the USA.

The Nobel Peace Prize Laureate takes it in one ear today and the other ear tomorrow ... and follows whatever he remembers to have seemed most salient in each.

He'll be more surprised than anyone when the whole thing actually does blow-up in his face ... on account of having blown up in the faces of all the MIC/CIA/Cold War vassals faces just prior to the final curtain.

He's just banking ... literally ... on the curtain - somehow - not coming down till after 21 January 2017.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 12, 2015 10:12:38 AM | 25

Brief Comic Interlude:

NATO enlargement and Russia: myths and realities

Direct from Papa Nato's website


Posted by: Alice In Thunderland | Feb 12, 2015 10:14:49 AM | 26

Yesterday I posted the full interview on BBC World Service. Much better that the article.

Posted by: okie farmer | Feb 12, 2015 10:36:43 AM | 27

The more interesting aspect of this is — how many Minsks it will take to get to the center of this Tootsie Roll Tootsie Pop.

Chelsea Clinton's Illegitimate Sister


Posted by: Cold N Holefield | Feb 12, 2015 10:46:39 AM | 28

Here it is:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p02jcrf3

Ukraine: The Untold Story of the Maidan Killings

Posted by: okie farmer | Feb 12, 2015 10:52:17 AM | 29

I see a lot of pontificating by the usual kitchen generals and armchair diplomats on this site. With their usual "lets all just blame Russia, and go to war" blather. Bearing in mind NONE of us were at Minsk, nor were ANY of us consulted...let's all take a deep breath and hope for the best. For now at least, war has been averted. The Fourth Reichs game plan has been stymied...for now. We can quibble ad nauseum over our own interpretation of this agreement...but it has no bearing on what WILL happen. At this point NONE of us has all the answers. Let's just wait and see. Before we condemn and accuse and lay blame and point fingers...let's give peace a chance. It beats the living Hell out of the alternative.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 12, 2015 10:55:03 AM | 30

I see a lot of pontificating by the usual kitchen generals and armchair diplomats on this site. With their usual "lets all just blame Russia, and go to war" blather.

Are you sure you're on the proper planet? Nobody but nobody here is blaming it on Russia — not even me. Most everyone who posts here would never cast any blame on Russia, and in fact they go a step further and carry Putin's water every chance they can get — which means always. You need to get your blogs straight when you're jumping from one to another at the speed of light.

Posted by: Cold N. Holefield | Feb 12, 2015 11:00:46 AM | 31

Without the troops cut off in Debaltsevo, how much will be left of the Ukrainian military?

Posted by: lysias | Feb 12, 2015 11:03:07 AM | 32

The problem is to a great degree, whether wishing for economic calamity or nuclear war as a variety of schadenfreud or what not aside, there is currently so much going on right niw that needs to come to an immediate hault (starting maybe anywhere between 30 to 50 to several millenia ago depending on what calculation you use) some kind of Indefineable Change is in the offing, whether nuclear war or otherwise.

What is wonderful about this moment of urgency, is how many other like minded people exist in this age, and the brillance that exists in our species against all the odds trying to unearth solutions (colden holefield aside it's impossible to determine what exactly his or her objective is.).

But, it's all to late really, oceans have been destroyed, governing bodies and the wealth that contols them consider all of us expendable, certainly at some point in time somebody will pull the trigger trying to maintain some semblance of human control over events that are spiralling completely out of control by the minute.

However My hope in and for humanity is reinforced by the human beings who stiil care. . .

Posted by: Geoff | Feb 12, 2015 11:06:51 AM | 33

I agree with b’s main gist. Nonetheless, positive points. 1) Merkel’s relative back-track, from pro-Kiev-US to a more ‘European’ (partnered with Hollande on the couch in one pic I saw) stance. Now that would need a discussion, there has been some already here. Still on the face of it it’s hopeful.

2) The whole affair seems to have been more serious, harder-hitting, and better run. Representatives - several, number not given - of Donesk and Lugansk were present in a parallel meeting (bad), along with an unamed Russian advisor, the meeting was chaired by the president of Bielorussia. Their negotiations took longer and were not reported on at all. Read this in only in one blog article, in French so ? - but seems credible.

I think Hollande is getting the idea that if he pursues escalation / a pro-atlantic stance he is signing the death warrant of the French Socialist Party (and his own career of course as he would never be forgiven.) There are too many forces - political, civil, corporate, etc.- against provoking Russia / sanctions on Russia / war in Europe, etc. Now Hollande may be seen as a posturing nobody, a deserved description, but putting him in a crunch position is also bad for the US, as it potentially reduces US control of the EU (which it does not want to break up for now at least, see for ex. Obama’s support, words only, for Greece.)

One major failure, alluded to above is the weakness of the OSCE, which has been pushed into a role that it isn’t really qualified for, it is probably internally conflicted and overstretched. Plus, naturally, ignored (see 7 for ex.)

I’m not predicting anything particular, and I’m sure Putin’s demands for federalisation are illusory, that is a knight’s move. Let’s ask Capablanca’s ghost! (legendary chess champion.)

Posted by: Noirette | Feb 12, 2015 11:15:34 AM | 34

@30@ Cold
Didn't mean to hit a nerve man. Why do you assume I meant you? I make an observation and you take offense and respond by trying to insult me? Why? Do you feel better now? I hope so.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 12, 2015 11:19:44 AM | 35

"Most everyone who posts here would never cast any blame on Russia, and in fact they go a step further and carry Putin's water every chance they can get — which means always"

Says the person who just posted a link to a fucking four minute video of some girl licking a lollipop. So funny. So clever. You should have your own blog. Oh wait, you do. Just no one gives a shit.

Cast blame on Russia all you want if it gives you that smug and gay feeling you like so much. After all, EVERYONE KNOWS UBER ALLES, that any nation the USSA rolls over to fuck with is automatically, and unequivocally wrong and bad. Whether a tiny 3rd World Arab dictatorship with oil or a large nuclear armed country defending against obvious provocation its border - the West is good and everybody else who opposes them is eeeeevil. The simple Manichean prick.
Watching the USSA killers and liars over the last 15 years and you still carry water for them? At least we know where you stand.

Posted by: farflungstar | Feb 12, 2015 11:30:25 AM | 36

Posted by: lysias | Feb 12, 2015 11:03:07 AM | 31

60 percent according to FAZ. But that is not the hole picture. Is it really the Ukrainian army in the pocket or voluntary forces?

Posted by: somebody | Feb 12, 2015 11:40:47 AM | 37

Maybe I worded my post poorly. All I meant to say is that this Minsk 2.0 is a general agreement. And as we all know, the devil is in the details. And those have yet to be worked out. So before we pass judgment, let's be happy that there is a chance this works out. I agree that oceans and earth are being destroyed. I agree that oligarchs rule...for now? Yes, we are considered "expendable". But despite that, I see hopeful signs. I see Europe standing up for itself for the first time in decades. I see the people of Donbass standing up for not only themselves, but for us all. I see a reawakening of the human soul and spirit. A growing awareness of our common enemy. I see the Fourth Reich beginning to grasp and flail to maintain dominance. Those are all good things. Too little too late? We shall see. And as a citizen who resides within the Fourth Reich, I take heart in these things. My country left me and now pursues an agenda I disapprove of. I look at what is happening and I think perhaps. Perhaps...

Posted by: Scott | Feb 12, 2015 11:57:47 AM | 38

DPR& LPR prime ministers joint interview on new Minsk agreement


PM of the DPR, Alexander Zakharchenko :

-- We have signed an agreement today, signed an agreement which, I hope, is going to put the hostilities to an end, and will allow the Donetsk People's Republic and [the] Luhansk People's Republic to switch to peaceful restoration. For the sake of our people ... we signed an agreement.

I hope that with this, yet another step, we've helped the Ukraine itself to change, to carry out a number of important reforms, and I hope we'll see a completely different Ukraine in the nearest future. I guess it's a serious victory of [the] Donetsk People's Republic and [the] Luhansk People's Republic.

PM of the LPR, Igor Plotnitsky :

You probably know that I, as well as Alexandr Vladimirovich had ... a different opinion on this matter, but it's impossible not to trust and not to respect the opinion[s] of the three most significant [of] today's presidents, [the] Russian, German, and French leaders. And if they act as our guarantor[s] of that, that those changes that have been included to the agreement [which] guarantee that Ukraine is going to change under the pressure of Donbass, [then] we can't deprive Ukraine of this chance.

Because the country itself is going to change, The relationship [ed. or "attitude", the word is the same in Russian, both meanings fit into the context] is going to be changed, the people are going to change. In fact, the people of Ukraine, as we used to be one with them, we stay one with them. Today we consider them to be our people too. This chance is given to Ukraine to change its constitution, by the way, it's noted in these documents to change its attitude.

This is ... as for today ... we do consider it to be a serious achievement of [the] Luhansk People's Republic, [and the] Donetsk People's Republic, in order for the Ukraine to change, to change in a civilized way, [a] peaceful way. [To] stop murdering its own people, destroying the kindergartens, [and] other social and livelihoods [and] objects. We believe and know that victory is going to be ours anyway and it doesn't matter whether it's achieved with political or military methods. We know it for sure - Ukraine is going to change [and] it will change thanks to the people of Donbass. Thank you.

PM of the DPR, Alexander Zakharchenko :

Also I'd like to add, that thanks to these points, of the memorandum, all the responsibility for not fulfilling, or any kind of sabotage of any of these agreements, lies directly on Pyotr Alexeyevich Poroshenko. All these points require additional negotiations, negotiations [that] are still underway. So in case of any violation [of] or ignoring of these points ... [then] any other memorandums are going to be out of [the] question in future ... at all. Thank you.


At some point - like right now - the geopolitical calculation seems so inhuman and otherworldly. These are the people who've been so abused, and they are, once again, willing (or resigned) to give the agreement that's been made for them another shot. I suppose they have no choice ... and it might work. But their vision seems clear, whether this works or not.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 12, 2015 11:59:01 AM | 39

Analysis on Cassad (Rus): http://colonelcassad.livejournal.com/2045918.html

As expected, not that great for either Russia and especially for Novorossians, their leaders publicly abandoned independence or even federalization. In other words, very limited autonomy and Novorossia returns under Kiev rule. Not many happy faces in Donbass today, for what tens of thousands died then?

Granted, it wont be honored by Kiev anyway, since Washington wants Afghanistan 2.0 for Russia, while Russia is prepared for massive concessions at the expense of NF, just to avoid escalation and sanctions.

BTW, Russia's ambassador and Novorossians signed it, while no one from other side did, France and Germany just "supported in words", and Kuchma doesnt have any real post in Ukraine anyway, even you or me could have signed for Ukies with the same authority. In other words, Minsk 2.0 conditions will be demanded from Russia again, while other side havent signed anything anyway.

Posted by: Harry | Feb 12, 2015 12:04:18 PM | 40

I’m not predicting anything particular, and I’m sure Putin’s demands for federalisation are illusory, that is a knight’s move. Let’s ask Capablanca’s ghost! (legendary chess champion.)

Posted by: Noirette | Feb 12, 2015 11:15:34 AM | 33

I'm equally sure that Putin's call for federalisation is not at all illusory.

The disintegration of Ukraine from it's current configuration, such as NovoR being annexed by Russia OR Russia declaring it recognises NovoR as an independent Sovereign Nation, would immediately render the The Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances null and void.

Putin definitely does NOT want that for reasons already stated

Posted by: Alice In Thunderland | Feb 12, 2015 12:10:26 PM | 41

At some point - like right now - the geopolitical calculation seems so inhuman and otherworldly. These are the people who've been so abused, and they are, once again, willing (or resigned) to give the agreement that's been made for them another shot. I suppose they have no choice ... and it might work. But their vision seems clear, whether this works or not.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 12, 2015 11:59:01 AM | 38

Personally I don't think they have any other choice

I'd hazard a guess and claim that it has been made very clear to them by the Russian side that they are not likely to emerge from this as anything other than "officially" remaining as a part of Ukraine. At best for them it will be a federalised Ukraine. At best.

Since they appear to rely on Russia for support (financial, logistical, military etc) I'm sure it's been made crystal clear to them by their Russia supporters within the Putin Admin, that biting the hand that feeds in this instance would be very unwise.

Posted by: Alice In Thunderland | Feb 12, 2015 12:18:59 PM | 42

I see a lot of pontificating by the usual kitchen generals and armchair diplomats on this site. With their usual "lets all just blame Russia, and go to war" blather.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 12, 2015 10:55:03 AM | 29

lol wut?

Posted by: Alice In Thunderland | Feb 12, 2015 12:21:21 PM | 43

Putin and the rebels should have ground the ukrainian force in the cauldron into hamburger prior to starting any negotiations and then argued from a much stronger position. (IE Ukraine's latest army is gone, the rebels could threaten to move west, etc.)

Instead, so long as the cease fire holds, Ukraine gets its army back, which it will promptly refit and throw back at the east at the earliest opportunity. (while blaming Russia for it)

I think Putin still clings to faith in international order and diplomacy and it's clouding his judgement on this. He needs to accept that the US and it's proxies only believe in "might makes right" and act accordingly.

We'll see if the rebels even commit to it on the ground though. If I'd spent several months slowly pushing west at the cost of blood and pain, I'd be more than a little miffed that foreign leaders just agreed for me to go back to the original starting line I was on a few months back.

Posted by: thepanzer | Feb 12, 2015 12:39:28 PM | 44

@Alice@ 42
Once again, Alice...If you read my initial post, I said "on this site". Not "in this thread". And once again, I didn't mention names. I feel my statement was correct. There is a consistent "blame Russia" element here that persists despite logic and reality to the contrary. If you disagree...that's fine. If you took personal offence...I'm sorry.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 12, 2015 12:52:45 PM | 45

Just saw bits of Poroshenko Brussel's visit. Among other things one can hear him talking to various EU officials and saying something like disaster, disastrous 18 hours negotiations. Putin made it clear from the beginning that he didn't want any ceasefire. Also right after supposedly agreeing to a paper that stipulates a constitutional reform for Ukraine he immediately tweeted that Ukraine will stay a unitary state. He is doomed, the poor clown, I would almost feel pity for him if not the blood of so many innocent people on his hands.

Posted by: Al | Feb 12, 2015 12:54:22 PM | 46

@8 alberto.. what kind of bs thinking are you trying to pass over on folks here? russia wasn't responsible for that and it's totally off topic too. one cold is enough..

@18 ntg quote "Obama is pushing his war powers act on the same day as a major peace conference without American attendance. Obama and the Pentagon are going to run from Ukraine." first sentence is a good observation which sums up my view on the usa here.. i don't agree with you in the 2nd one though.. the usa will keep pushing to meddle and upend any agreement, not that this particular agreement is something to cheer about. as b says - the fighting will continue down the road shortly.. the usa will be all over it with their printing press and more too.

@24 jfl.. i agree with your viewpoint.

@33 noirette.. thanks for sharing your perspective.

@39 harry.. interesting if that is true about only some signing..

@40 alice in t. thanks for that.

Posted by: james | Feb 12, 2015 12:58:46 PM | 47

If you took personal offence...I'm sorry.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 12, 2015 12:52:45 PM | 44

You apparent need to apologise is funny, since as far as I can see so far no one has taken any offence at what you said, merely laughed at it

It's as if you are blind to the fact that people are laughing at what you said rather than taking offence at what you said.

Why you would wish to claim that "people laughing at your statement" = "taking offence" is a mystery

Posted by: Alice In Thunderland | Feb 12, 2015 1:04:39 PM | 48

I think we have to view Putin's actions during this crisis as Machiavellian in that he wants neither the Fascists of Kiev nor the Socialists of the People's Republics to become supreme. Both these forces threaten Russia in meaningful ways and so we watch the bloody consequences unfold and continue.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Feb 12, 2015 1:10:45 PM | 49

Ok Scott, now that the dude from "out west" has arrived it's become clear what you are referring to.

Posted by: Alice In Thunderland | Feb 12, 2015 1:19:57 PM | 50

Its painful to even think about people in Novorossia... They are suffering like anything, and even if they somehow survive multiple wars with short breathers (initiated to stop NAF breakthrough and Ukies to prepare for the new offensive), the end result will still be under fascists rule (when US gives permission).

To be honest, if I would be in partisans shoes, I would leave Ukraine for good. Whether its Russia or somewhere else. Whats the point to spill your blood if its just a token in negotiation between powers, and end result will be under fascists rule anyway. When I hear of "special status" without very clear and beyond interpretation points, I remember Israel and their "special status" for Gaza, its probably what Kiev has in mind.

Posted by: Harry | Feb 12, 2015 1:21:39 PM | 51

US going to train Ukrainian "troops from the Interior Ministry"

in Lviv.

Posted by: somebody | Feb 12, 2015 1:26:33 PM | 52

Fake cease fire, perfect time for another false flag. I give it a week or two.

Posted by: L Bean | Feb 12, 2015 2:08:27 PM | 53

@48 that's a good point. Russian oligarchy is not very compatible with the grassroots essentially anti-oligarchic movement of Novorossiya and Putin definitely doesn't want anything like that to spring up in Russia, but Putin is also in a tough spot. The mood inside Russia is pretty somber. On the one hand the Russians are tired of seeing their brothers in Donbass dying under the nazi shelling every day,- all this with an open support of the West. A lot of people are truly moved by this and would support a full scale invasion of Ukraine by now as unbelievable as it would be only a year ago. There is really a boiling point about to be reached in Russia and a much more hawkish nationalistic side is gaining more support. On the other hand people in Russia are tired of the oligarchic regime as well and now the sanctions and the economic crisis are exacerbating all this. For now the people are willing to suffer the economic crisis as they mostly blame the US for it, but things can change rapidly if only the people would feel Putin lost control of the situation.

Posted by: Al | Feb 12, 2015 2:39:30 PM | 54

L Bean

YEs also pretty obvious also that Porky wanted the ceasefire since hes losing atm.

Posted by: Anonymous | Feb 12, 2015 2:49:46 PM | 55

does anyone know the specific time minsk 2 goes into effect? feb 15th noon, or?
also, does anyone know what time the agreement was signed in minsk? thanks..

@48 wow.. that's just a minor theme - a good distraction to the primary one which is this : the usa wants to destroy russia.. they don't want any alliance between russia or europe either and won't be happy until it turns every place on the planet more generally into a pile of rubble with it's neo con military-financial industry complex/mayham.. that is the main act behind the wiz of oz's curtain. don't lose sight of that.. everything else is 2ndary..

Posted by: james | Feb 12, 2015 2:56:54 PM | 56

Anonymous - yes, a regroup every time he starts to lose.

Posted by: L Bean | Feb 12, 2015 2:58:25 PM | 57

does anyone know the specific time minsk 2 goes into effect? feb 15th noon, or?

00:00 hrs Feb 15th

Posted by: Alice In Thunderland | Feb 12, 2015 3:17:26 PM | 58

The Ukraine situation may not rock a nation such as the UK, but given the results and Cameron's behavior, stories that will come could seriously endanger his election chances and funding for British intelligence.

Posted by: NotTimothyGeithner | Feb 12, 2015 10:01:05 AM | 22

lol

you are waaaaaaaaay overestimating the attention-span and overall intelligence of the British electorate

Posted by: Alice In Thunderland | Feb 12, 2015 3:23:20 PM | 59

James. this may be a minor or secondary theme for us observers and commenters but it is a primary life and death issue for the people of the Donbass and the conscript soldiers of the Ukrainian Army.

Russia can take care of itself and it may be punished by sanctions but it is very unlikely to be destroyed no matter the US machinations.

Posted by: Wayoutwest | Feb 12, 2015 3:31:20 PM | 60

Well I am surprised by this Minsk 2 agreement. For some reason I expected the Russians to give the NAF sufficient time to liquidate the cauldron at Debaltsevo before pushing them to accept another cease-fire. The loss of those 5000 surrounded troops there would have created tremendous pressure on the Poroshenko government. Maybe even a coup attempt by the right sector forces.

However, I guess when Merkel and Hollande met with Putin recently they made some promises that appealed to the Russians. Those promises - whatever they might be -- seem pale, whatever they may be, compared to the facts on the ground around Debaltsevo. The NAF looked like it was on the verge of one massive military victory. Bases on Cassad's reports on the fighting there it looked like many Donbas freedom fighters lost their lives creating that cauldron. Those gains should have been written into this latest cease-fire.

I have supported Putin as well as the Donbas rebels from the beginning, but it would be unfortunate if the Russians start trading the sacrifices those rebels for some utterly vague promises from Germany and France. Their promises are like wisps of smoke, while NAF conquering of the Debaltsevo pocket creates some solid facts on the ground.

Maybe Putin has a better sense of what is happening than I do (for sure he does). Unfortunately this is creating an impression that he feels he has to trade the sacrifices of the Donbas people for some minor concessions to gain whatever from the EU. Maybe those sanctions are hurting Russian more than they are showing?

Posted by: ToivoS | Feb 12, 2015 3:37:43 PM | 61

The UKR's who most deserve being killed have left the Cauldron party. Only the conscripts remain. Putin doesn't want to see more fratricide in Ukraine. Neither does anyone except neo-cons with a blood-lust for Khazaria sans population.

Putin is an able diplomat in these situations because he's an expert on how to deal with Bolsheviks. US Neo-cons are 21st century Bolsheviks. In the mid-20th century the Soviet Union was dealing with an America who did not have many (or any) Bolsheviks in power. American foreign policy was based on moral principles. Sure, there were plenty of exceptions. And lots of self-serving and double-dealing. But generally Americans were trustworthy and decent. And the old Soviet Communists could never be totally sure whether decisions were being made by pragmatists or puritans. It kept them guessing and off-balance. Now -- Russia is dealing with US-Nazi-Zionist-Bolsheviks. Putin knows them better than they know themselves. And he uses this as his advantage.

As an American who does not support "foreign entanglements" and believes in the "exceptional" qualities of all humanity -- I watch VVPutin play Vicky Nuland and her ilk like a fine violin with great satisfaction. I don't consider her, nor her ilk, as American. And given her dual-citizen status, she likely doesn't either.

Posted by: giddy | Feb 12, 2015 4:00:52 PM | 62

@ToivoS #60:

I have supported Putin as well as the Donbas rebels from the beginning, but it would be unfortunate if the Russians start trading the sacrifices those rebels for some utterly vague promises from Germany and France.

To quote Gleb Bazov:

This meeting was not about Ukraine at all, ladies & gents. It was about EU and Russia & mending fences, REGARDLESS of Ukraine.

Posted by: Demian | Feb 12, 2015 4:06:13 PM | 63

I see a couple of wildcards that could keep the ceasefire from even getting off the ground. Kiev, either through delusion or deceit, maintains that their force in Debaltseve isn't cut off. They've been desperately trying to break the ring so as to have some pretense that the ceasefire line would have Debaltseve under UAF control. At 0:00 February 15 Kiev's choice is to either concede the pocket or break the ceasefire agreement. The volunteer battalions do not operate under the authority of UAF central command and are not signatories to the ceasefire. Will they ignore it? Ironically, they acknowledge the cutoff of Debaltseve so they have less incentive to break the ceasefire in that sector than do the forces under the UAF central command. They also fall under the category of irregulars that are to be disarmed under the agreement, which is political dynamite on the Kiev side. The internecine fighting could kick into high gear.

Posted by: Thirdeye | Feb 12, 2015 4:13:17 PM | 64

@60 @61

USA:Ukraine::Russia:Novorossya

It's all about Big Power advantage : US, German, Russian.

The people on the ground be damned. Wind 'em and set 'em at each other. Stop, let them recover, then do it again.

Posted by: jfl | Feb 12, 2015 4:24:02 PM | 65

@62 I think the Ukrainians in the cauldron have incentive to adhere to a cease fire, but the U.S. has been sending aid to Kiev for a while now. Why the recent rush to "arm Kiev"? I think there are more than a few volunteers.

Posted by: NotTimothyGeithner | Feb 12, 2015 4:27:56 PM | 66

@Demian@ 61
It could also be about separating Europe from the Fourth Reich. Putin is a chess player. To be a good one, you must be several moves ahead of your opponent. His opponent are the neo-cons. Their next moves are easy to calculate. This game is far from over. There are many agendas and motives at play here. I, for one, am not going to worry about one particular move...let's wait a bit. Time is on Putin and Novorussias side. And I'm also not going to underestimate Russia. Others have...to their regret. I've read your posts. You are very perceptive. So you know there is a bigger picture in play here. Let's give a master chess player a chance. I think/hope "checkmate" is coming. For all our sakes...I hope I'm right.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 12, 2015 4:41:01 PM | 67

Toivos

" for some minor concessions to gain whatever from the EU. Maybe those sanctions are hurting Russian more than they are showing?"

Interesting but I dont see the rebels winning anything/any concessions nor are Russia by this agreement. One can be sure that the sanctions will be put in 2-3 weeks.

Posted by: Anonymous | Feb 12, 2015 4:41:10 PM | 68

@Anon@66
Hurting? Russia is very close to having no foreign debt. LoL. They also have immense gold reserves. What other country can say the same? They aren't "hurting". Not compared to the self-inflicted gunshot wound administered by the Fourth Reich and it's vassals. If you look at the moves toward Egypt, Venezuela and Nicaragua, in addition to signed agreements with China and India...plus the potential of agreements with Iran and Greece...I would say Russia is doing just fine strategically. But then, what do I know? I'm just a simple country boy.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 12, 2015 4:50:43 PM | 69

For some reason I expected the Russians to give the NAF sufficient time to liquidate the cauldron at Debaltsevo before pushing them to accept another cease-fire.

Putin didn't initiate this conference. French and Germans did, (with urging from Porky) but he couldn't resist it - otherwise it would look like he was against peace.

IMO, Minsk 2 was always to buy time, as I said before, to rescue the UAF out of the cauldron, allow Kiev to regroup, etc

Posted by: okie farmer | Feb 12, 2015 4:55:39 PM | 70

The ambitions driving the Ukraine consensus

...The best explanation for the Beltway unanimity now expressed by members of Congress, journalists, and think tank people is the career ambition and the groupthink encouraged by the imperatives of the deep state. The last is a term for that large, many-layered complex: the top officers of the armed forces, top career officials of the intelligence agencies, defense contractors, and think tanks that perpetuate themselves and maintain their budgets by overstating threats and never, ever getting caught underestimating them. The best current analysis of how this works come from Tufts professor Michael Glennon, in an important essay that deserves wide attention. One conclusion Glennon draws is that the only way you can advance to a bigger, more influential job is to be seen as “hard-hitting” and “tough minded.” And that means you can never ignore a foreign policy problem, or argue that an issue really isn’t such a big problem, or, perish the thought, muse that “this is not really our concern” in an official meeting and expect to be taken seriously in Washington.

The most compelling explanation of why the Obama administration seemed to be shifting towards a more hawkish policy (arming the Kiev government now) is that key players in the administration have begun maneuvering for jobs in a future Hillary Clinton administration. Reflexive (but not shrill) hawkishness a necessary form of careerism in the foreign policy bureaucracy set. As an explanation for important events, it’s a close cousin to Hannah Arendt’s observation that Eichman was a banal and mediocre figure. Personally, I would prefer that the Chomskyite monopoly capitalism explanation was more credible. If we’re going to risk armed conflict with Moscow on Russia’s borders, which brings into play the possibility of nuclear war and the incineration of our civilization, the underlying causes ought to be grander than Michele Flournoy’s job aspirations...

Washington, DC career-minded crowd are getting ready for the next war in the next administration, so, whoever jumps higher yelling "Kill the Russkies" gets the the next job in line. They don't care if getting their jobs will cost thousands of lives in places whose names they can't even pronounce. Their careers are made by sloshing over the blood of thousands, millions of human beings.

Posted by: Lone Wolf | Feb 12, 2015 5:08:36 PM | 71

@59 wow.. i agree completely, but i still maintain the strings being pulled behind the scenes are more important to keep an eye on for us distance observers.. for the folks in ukraine - i really feel bad for them and the country as a whole. it is basically no more while there sons/daughters or parents get murdered/killed/maimed.. send the politicians to the front lines, or get them to live in an apt in donetsk..

Posted by: james | Feb 12, 2015 5:19:07 PM | 72

@69@ Lone Wolf
Let them get ready for their next careers in the next administration. That's almost two years away. Many things can happen in two years. I understands their careers, jobs and maybe lives depend on their success. I for one, wouldn't bet on any of those prospects. I have a feeling things are moving beyond their control and faster that they comprehend. I think their manipulations and plots will be exposed and thwarted. At least I hope so. But that's just me.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 12, 2015 5:21:59 PM | 73

@Scott@67

But then, what do I know? I'm just a simple country boy.

Suuuuuure, and I am selling a bridge between Alaska and Russia, in case you're interested.

@okie farmer@68

IMO, Minsk 2 was always to buy time, as I said before, to rescue the UAF out of the cauldron, allow Kiev to regroup, etc

Sure it was to buy time, but for whom? For the Ukinazis? Yes, but not only. For the federalist forces? Yes, for them too, but... IMHO, the main reason for the Merkel/Hollande sudden interest on the CIA/MI5/Brussels mafia-created carnage in South-East Ukraine, was to buy time for Europe, vis-a-vis the empire of chaos "weapons for the Ukinazis" proposition. Eurostan will try to restrain the empire from widening the conflict, a win-win proposition for both the mil-ind complex, and the Ukinazi kleptocracy, whose only source of theft by now is war and more war, having exhausted all other sources to palliate their disastrous economy. IMF conditioned the next tranche to stopping the war, and no one wants to get even close to that economic tar-baby. Eurostan cannot afford a conflict with Russia so close to their borders, so they decided to kick the can down the road for a few, hoping they can work out a better exit out of this conflict than Minsk 1.0, 2.0, et al.

Posted by: Lone Wolf | Feb 12, 2015 5:31:06 PM | 74

Here's another interesting take. Again, the Debaltseve cauldron has the potential to bring down the whole thing. http://fortruss.blogspot.com/2015/02/a-new-calm-before-big-war.html

Posted by: Thirdeye | Feb 12, 2015 5:57:48 PM | 75

somebody @20 I think this BBC story might be significant. They are acknowledging that Maiden square activists were involved in the sniper attacks on Feb 20. I was out just now and listened to the NPR radio here in the US and saw they have have picked up on this story.

We should recognize that BBC is the official news agency for the British government. If they are now starting to admit that in the days before the coup that Maiden snipers were killing police this might mean that UK officials are getting ready to admit to some facts that until now they have dismissed as Russian propaganda. Maybe we are seeing some cracks appearing in the US, UK and EU anti-russian united front that Kerry and Obama created last spring?

Posted by: ToivoS | Feb 12, 2015 6:20:51 PM | 76

I'd like to highlight this passage from PM of the DPR, Alexander Zakharchenko (my emphasis, #38):

So in case of any violation [of] or ignoring of these points ... [then] any other memorandums are going to be out of [the] question in future ... at all.

One of the guests in RT latest Cross Talk raises an interesting point: European sanctions on Russia don't have automatic renewal, they will expire on July. Seeing all the gung ho from their American "partners" to throw gasoline at the fire must have had some effect on Berlin/Paris (Le Pen first and then Sarko out of the closet?). Did the yankees don't want to go or weren't invited to Minsk?

Will Obama push the insanity in his lameduck years or leave it over to the next hawk to start WW3?
US Blinks: Kerry Says Prepared To Roll Back Sanctions On Russia

Posted by: citizen x | Feb 12, 2015 6:29:29 PM | 77

@74 I'm not sure if it's a break (at least between the UK and the US; Cameron and Obama seem like two dolls who would get along) as much as certain leaders need to find a way to quell the Russia must be destroyed crowd as they back off from that position. Going from Putin is Super Hitler to lifting sanctions might bother people. The article (I didn't listen to the long interview) was very murky about how the chain of events transpired. This is about putting mud in the water more than anything else especially if the story about the redacted mh17 flight catches on.

Posted by: NotTimothyGeithner | Feb 12, 2015 6:33:05 PM | 78

Since when are European leaders (sic) allowed to make political deals at the global level? The USSA is not a party to this agreement. There was no mention of the US troops arriving in the near future to train the Ukrainian army to better fight the militias of the Donbass. It won't take long for this to be revealed as another sick joke.

Posted by: Kraken | Feb 12, 2015 6:40:45 PM | 79

@69 Lone Wolf

<1>Washington, DC career-minded crowd are getting ready for the next war in the next administration, so, whoever jumps higher yelling "Kill the Russkies" gets the the next job in line. They don't care if getting their jobs will cost thousands of lives in places whose names they can't even pronounce. Their careers are made by sloshing over the blood of thousands, millions of human beings.<1>

Indeed! In his last book, World in Crisis: The End of the American Century (2009),the late radical historian Gabriel Kolko fingered the role of ambition and opportunism in determining U.S. foreign policy. The continuity in decision-making is intellectual, organizational, political, and implemented by "very ambitious people who often do not believe in anything but success. Opportunism--everywhere--is far more crucial than ideology in determining what people say and do."

Decisions on vital questions are filtered through the prism of ambition, Kolko observes, and since men and women who aspire to attain influence and power very often give advice with a view to advancing their own careers, they are not objective assessors of options. "Decisions are made to attain success; choices are rarely made with an eye on the facts."

Posted by: CaptainCook | Feb 12, 2015 6:45:27 PM | 80

Questions why did Putin caves in and Donbass signed the agreements? BBC reported today on NPR, more sanctions will be imposed if Putin doesn’t keep the agreements?

Isn't this a threat using sanctions on Putin, just as EU warned Putin repeatedly in the past not to use gas as threats?

Posted by: Jack Smith | Feb 12, 2015 6:46:14 PM | 81

Ukraine gets new $40 billion Lifeline

CNN - "Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, announced the deal at a press conference in Brussels. The agreement covers four years and includes $17.5 billion from the IMF, complemented by other organizations and countries. [e.g. looted pensions and health and human services funds in France, UK, DE, US]

In exchange for the funds, the illegal dual-citizen Israeli Junta in Kiev has promised to 'slash energy subsidies', 'restructure its banks' (to be taken over by Western banking cartels), and 'implement measures to tackle corruption while 'protecting the poorest households'."

--

No word on missing $50B in Ukie gold bullion, looted to cover DE bullion repatriation.

'Eastern Ukraine' Armistice Line begins rapid Russian privatization of Donbass farmland and factories. Ukraine expatriates assigned to lumber mill green chain labor in Outer Siberia.

BREAKING! Federal Czar announces unexpected -$20B shortfall in US Social Security Fund~!
US Congress has approved -8% across-the-board funding cuts to health and human services~!

LEAK! Nuland chortles on cell to Lagarde, "Fuck the Citizens!"

URRK! URRK!

You may now return to your armchair play-by-play badminton war games commentary.

Posted by: ChipNikh | Feb 12, 2015 6:59:19 PM | 82

@77@ Kraken
Since when? Since 1939. That having been said, I think the reason the Fourth Reich wasn't invited is because it wasn't wanted or needed. And I think THAT is the big news we should take from this. For the first time in decades, people are trying to sort things out without "help" from America. What remains to be seen is how the Fourth Reich will try to sabotage this. And yes, I am a citizen of the Forth Reich so I have watched it's games for many years. Hopefully the chess-master has end game envisioned. I have a gut feeling he does. If he doesn't...God help us all.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 12, 2015 7:00:49 PM | 83

I continue to look back to a talk that Mr. Putin had, I believe in December, 2014, where he said the crisis would be over in 2 years. I keep wonder what he knew then.

Posted by: BakerPete | Feb 12, 2015 7:23:27 PM | 84

More commentary on the Minsk agreement: https://irrussianality.wordpress.com/2015/02/12/not-so-super-after-all/

Posted by: KMF | Feb 12, 2015 7:57:20 PM | 85

DeepResource: Putin briefs press after marathon Minsk talks on Ukraine peace deal

Putin is visibly tired. Here is his appearance without the English overdub.

Atlanticism is so 20th century. Europeans need to forget about the English language. The two languages all Europeans should know are German and Russian.

Posted by: Demian | Feb 12, 2015 7:59:27 PM | 86

82

Bowing to pressure from the International Tribal Banksters now underwriting the illegal dual-citizen Israeli Junta in Kiev, El Junta Jefe Poroshenko just announced henceforth
that the nation of Ukraine will be chartered in perpetuity as House of Khazarlinga SSA,
a special tax embodiment which allows for totally secret cash deposits and withdrawals
in its Central Bank, as well as providing unlimited money laundering for international
government officials bent on looting their way to billionairehood while still in office.

For 14 years Afghanistan was Looting Central, $500 BILLION a year gone MIA without audit,
USA's own ambassador to Kabul complaining that 89% of war funds were simply round-tripped right back to private coffers in WADC-NOVA and from there to their offshore tax shelters.
Ukraine offers what Afghanistan and Iraq used to, only on much much better terms. Ukies
are of the Chosen themselves! Ukraine is their new branch bank and it's open for business!

$40 BILLION would build Mayo Clinics in every US State of the Union, and all across Europe.
Then $500 BILLION looted by Defense (sic) every year would pay for the best medical staff.
Western Worlders could enjoy the best health and longevity of any humans in all of history.

Instead, we get ZIRP'd by the Tribe. Have a Bloody QE Day.

Posted by: ChipNikh | Feb 12, 2015 8:02:33 PM | 87

Wow all the way back to Dec 2014

You sir truely have astounding, nay, superhuman powers of recall

Positvely photographic

Ps

Could you 4th Reichers pls stop investing all your hopes, in poor old Mr Putin, for a saviour from your own leaders

It seriously embarrassing to watch you make such a pathetic spectacle of yourselves

If you want to be saved from your own leaders you're going to have to get up off your own godamn fat asses and do something about it yourselves, stead of just whining on t'internet and hoping for a messiah

Posted by: TLC | Feb 12, 2015 8:07:33 PM | 88

Demian never ceases to amuse with his incessant inanities

He's like a Russophillic Cold N Holefield, only less intelligent and a completely unaware

Posted by: TLC | Feb 12, 2015 8:10:04 PM | 89

@TLC #87:

You're ahead of the game! You already can't write in proper English.

Posted by: Demian | Feb 12, 2015 8:26:38 PM | 90

Oh demian, you poor little airhead

Posted by: TLC | Feb 12, 2015 8:33:36 PM | 91

#88 Demian Troll alert my man. TLC has just come out of nowhere. Try to ingnore him (or it).

Posted by: ToivoS | Feb 12, 2015 8:34:00 PM | 92

@86@ TLC
As a "4th Reicher", I have a few things to say to you kid. First, neither I nor my ass are fat. Second, unlike you I have fought for the Fourth Reich many years ago and realized the error of my ways. Third, I, like all Americans of a similar view do what we can when we can. I neither need nor expect a messiah. I stand on my own two feet. You appear out of nowhere to insult, demean and degrade your betters...I think I hear your mommy calling...she got back from the store with a new case of your favorite juice boxes. Now go play nice with the other children and let the adults speak without your petty interferences. It's close to bedtime. Nighty-night young-un.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 12, 2015 8:48:38 PM | 93

Scott meet foff.

Posted by: dh | Feb 12, 2015 8:54:08 PM | 94

@92@ dh
Howdy. I'm not up on abbreviations. Please forgive my ignorance. What is a foff? Is it what I suspect? If so, you're a riot. if not...I'm still at a loss.

Posted by: Scott | Feb 12, 2015 8:57:57 PM | 95

Scott meet dh, possibly the most boring man on the planet

Posted by: TLC | Feb 12, 2015 9:06:32 PM | 96

Only a thin membrane separates the warring parties, in this proxy battle, from a conflagration. I think b is right that this Minsk 2.0 diplomacy is a temporizing measure; but in the ebb and flow of this chicanery, the ones who buy the most time, while holding the high cards, win. The infusion of IMF money, the billions laid out for Kiev, are going straight into Poroshenko's war machine. This is but one tranche in the customization of the financial war, and an investment in the bloodier fight. Can Washington be speaking in good faith when it says, via Kerry, that under these new diplomatic circumstances it would consider dialing back the sanctions on Russia?

The US government is about to cross another threshold of gambles and risks, as Obama asks for even greater authorizations from Congress, to battle I$IS and "associated forces" wherever they may exist on the planet. The vagueness of the wording is even praised by the spokespersons of those who are clamoring for the new power.

Posted by: Copeland | Feb 12, 2015 9:06:57 PM | 97

@92 foff is a regular here. Keeps changing his nick. His favorite strategy is insulting other posters to get a reaction. Nobody is sure why he does it. Very boring person.

Posted by: dh | Feb 12, 2015 9:16:12 PM | 98

Rick Rozoff is the antidote for the pro-Putin sycophancy of the Saker & Co.--he makes clear Putin's complicity:

https://www.corbettreport.com/interview-1000-rick-rozoff-warns-ukraine-war-is-inevitable/

Posted by: Cu Chulainn | Feb 12, 2015 9:28:21 PM | 99

No dh I generally only insult idiots (damien for instance) and liars (the gimp for instance)

Non idiots and nonliars i tend to leave alone

Ocassionally I have a go at yanks, just for being yanks, cos theyre just annoying with their desire to tell everyone about their dumbass clueless moronic opinions (demian and the gimp for example) as any one with even half a brain would ever need to hear yet more ill formed mental bleatings of yet another fat stupid yank (demian and the gimp yet again)

Posted by: TLC | Feb 12, 2015 9:37:53 PM | 100

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