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December 06, 2022

U.S. No Longer Supports Fight For Crimea

The U.S. seems to have changed its position with regards to Crimea.

Blinken in August 2022:

Secretary Antony Blinken @SecBlinken - 16:46 UTC · Aug 23, 2022
United States government official

In my remarks to the Crimea Platform Summit, I urged the international community to keep raising the costs and pressure on President Putin and his enablers until all Russian troops leave Ukraine. Crimea is Ukraine. That was our position in 2014, and it remains in 2022.
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Same dude, yesterday:

Secretary Antony J. Blinken With Editor in Chief Matt Murray At The Wall Street Journal CEO Council Summit

SECRETARY BLINKEN: Our focus is on continuing to do what we’ve been doing, which is to make sure that Ukraine has in its hands what it needs to defend itself, what it needs to push back against the Russian aggression, to take back territory that’s been seized from it since February 24th, to make sure as well that it has the support economically and on a humanitarian basis to withstand what’s happening in the country every single day. That’s our focus.

"Territory that’s been seized from [Ukraine] since February 24th" obviously does not include Crimea which Russia 'seized' in 2014. This then is a significant shift in the position Blinken had earlier underlined.

Posted by b at 13:11 UTC | Comments (184)

December 05, 2022

Ukraine - Crimea Bridge Repaired, No Ammunition, Drone Attacks In Russia

On October 8 a Ukrainian bomb destroyed the southern part of the car bridge to Crimea. The northern part was also slightly damaged, a passing train on the rail bridge next to it burned out. Some people in Kiev were quite happy about it:

Syricide @Syricide - 8:33 UTC · 10 Oct 2022 #Kiev yesterday.

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But the train traffic resumed a day later. The northern part of the car bridge was checked and car traffic in both directions was allowed. Repair preparations for the broken southern part immediately began.

Two days later the Russian military responded to the attack with the first intense strike against Ukraine's electricity infrastructure.

Now, less than two month later, the work is already done. Four damaged bridge spans have been replaced and a new tar cover has been laid on them. Today the Russia president drove a car over it:

Putin, accompanied by Deputy Prime Minister Marat Khusnullin, was shown on state television behind the wheel of a Mercedes, asking questions about where the attack took place.

"We are driving on the right hand side," Putin said, as he drove across the bridge. "The left side of the bridge, as I understand it, is in working condition, but nevertheless it needs to be completed. It still suffered a little, we need to bring it to an ideal state."

Putin also walked along parts of the bridge, Europe's largest, to inspect sections that are still visibly scorched.

Bidirectional traffic will now run on the southern span while the slightly damaged northern span will be repaired. This is likely to be finished before the end of the year.

Cont. reading: Ukraine - Crimea Bridge Repaired, No Ammunition, Drone Attacks In Russia

Posted by b at 17:51 UTC | Comments (280)

December 04, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-217

Only for news & views directly related to the Ukraine conflict.

The current open thread for other issues is here.

Please stick to the topic. Contribute facts. Do not attack other commentators.

Posted by b at 14:44 UTC | Comments (377)

The MoA Week In Review - (Not Ukraine) OT 2022-216

Last week's posts on Moon of Alabama:

BBC is designating targets:

BBC News (World) @BBCWorld - 13:32 UTC · Dec 3, 2022
New images show Russian army base built in occupied Ukrainian city of Mariupol

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The building is a civilian hospital:
- Donbass | Medical center in Mariupol: from scratch and turnkey - in just 85 days (video) - VSK

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Other issues:

Cont. reading: The MoA Week In Review - (Not Ukraine) OT 2022-216

Posted by b at 14:42 UTC | Comments (212)

December 03, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-215

Only for news & views directly related to the Ukraine conflict.

The current open thread for other issues is here.

Please stick to the topic. Contribute facts. Do not attack other commentators.

Posted by b at 15:44 UTC | Comments (245)

Musk Provides Twitter Censorship Files

In October 2020 the New York Post published private porn and business details it had retrieved from Hunter Biden's laptop. Emails found on it proved that Joe Biden, despite his claims otherwise, had manipulated the Ukrainian government in service of the gas company Burisma, which was paying his son's company for such lobbying.

The librul media and the Democratic party launched a censorship and denial campaign to suppress the news about the laptop. They called it 'Russian disinformation'. A court later verified that the content of the laptop was genuine.

When the story broke Twitter prominently prohibited and suppressed all links to the New York Post story.

Elon Musk, who has recently bought Twitter, has given the relevant internal Twitter communication to muckraker Matt Taibbi who then tweeted the story:

Matt Taibbi @mtaibbi - 11:34 UTC · Dec 3, 2022

1. Thread: THE TWITTER FILES

Cont. reading: Musk Provides Twitter Censorship Files

Posted by b at 15:42 UTC | Comments (163)

December 02, 2022

Newsbits On Ukraine - Swamp Trenches, Short Training, Out Of Ammo

Realistic reports from the Ukrainian frontline are rare. Yesterday the British Express had this (@7:30, also here) from Bakhmut / Artemovsk in its Live coverage. One wonders how it has bypassed the censor:

Inside Bakhmut frontline 'littered with corpses' and 'colossal' losses

The Ukrainian commander of the Svoboda battalion, Petro Kuzyk, whose unit is one of those holding Bakhmut said his soldiers are staying in trenches full of corpses, fighting in extremely cold conditions and in knee-deep water against Russia's attacks.
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"I apologise for speaking slowly now, because I'm very cold – it's making me dizzy. I've now left the first line (since I was called). I'm warming up in the car, I'm almost falling asleep, because I haven't slept all this time. They charged yesterday, quite seriously. They felt a weakness in our defence, because (I will not name the numbers of the units, so as not to spoil their honour) there are units that are less motivated than ours. And yesterday they weakened our defence a little in the area just around the Bakhmut. Some units could not withstand this artillery onslaught and retreated.

"This is our principle: we, the Svoboda Battalion, do not retreat. And because of that, we found ourselves in a semi-surrounded situation, and we had a lot of work to do. In addition, it is a swamp full of mud. It is very difficult to evacuate the wounded or to deliver ammunition. The trenches are constantly deteriorating, and in this swamp they must be constantly rebuilt."

He added: "Today is the first day without rain, but then and yesterday when it fell, all the water flowed into the trenches. And the shelling was such that it was impossible to get out of the trench, so the guys were constantly wet for a day or two. Plus the temperature is like this. Many are contused, many with pneumonia. But we hold our ground, and we defend. I see young guys standing with their teeth clenched. I would really like someone to write about their achievements, because few people in the country know about it."

The above reads like a report from Verdun.

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More from that Express Live coverage (@8:31):

Cont. reading: Newsbits On Ukraine - Swamp Trenches, Short Training, Out Of Ammo

Posted by b at 15:13 UTC | Comments (397)

December 01, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-214

Only for news & views directly related to the Ukraine conflict.

The current open thread for other issues is here.

Please stick to the topic. Contribute facts. Do not attack other commentators.

Posted by b at 17:12 UTC | Comments (245)

China - Protest Instigators And Zero-Covid Policies

Within the last two days the New York Times produced four anti-China opinion pieces:

All four predict doom for China and president Xi's leadership. In typical color-revolution fashion the sudden onslaught of these pieces follows recent reports of minor protests in some Chinese cities related to zero-Covid measures.

But the biggest recent protest was actually a labor conflict at a factory where the Taiwanese contract manufacturer Foxconn is producing iPhones:

A violent workers’ revolt at the world’s largest iPhone factory this week in central China is further scrambling Apple’s strained supply and highlighting how the country’s stringent zero-Covid policy is hurting global technology firms.

The troubles started last month when workers left the factory campus in Zhengzhou, the capital of the central province of Henan, due to Covid fears. Short on staff, bonuses were offered to workers to return.

But protests broke out this week when the newly hired staff said management had reneged on their promises. The workers, who clashed with security officers wearing hazmat suits, were eventually offered cash to quit and leave.

Within a day that labor conflict was largely resolved.

Other protests were mostly small symbolic events carefully designed to get some media attention in the 'West'.


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For a huge country like China the total number of protests was laughable small:

Cont. reading: China - Protest Instigators And Zero-Covid Policies

Posted by b at 17:11 UTC | Comments (286)

November 30, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-213

Only for news & views directly related to the Ukraine conflict.

The current open thread for other issues is here.

Please stick to the topic. Contribute facts. Do not attack other commentators.

Posted by b at 15:23 UTC | Comments (357)