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November 25, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-207

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

Nov 24, 2022

Source: NASA Worldview - bigger

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Posted by b at 13:41 UTC | Comments (290)

November 24, 2022

Ukraine - Running On Empty

Yesterday the Pentagon announced another transfer of weapons to the Ukrainian military:

According to the Pentagon, the package includes:

Additional munitions for NASMAS
150 heavy machine guns with thermal imagery sights to counter Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS)
Additional ammunition for HIMARS
200 precision-guided 155mm artillery rounds
10,000 120mm mortar rounds
High-speed Anti-radiation missiles (HARMs)
150 High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicles (HMMWVs)
Over 100 light tactical vehicles
Over 20,000,000 rounds of small arms ammunition
Over 200 generators
Spare parts for 105mm Howitzers and other equipment

The $400 million is being sent to Ukraine through the Presidential Drawdown Authority (PDA), which allows President Biden to send arms straight from US military stockpiles.

The Pentagon is clearly scraping the bottom of the barrel.

Cont. reading: Ukraine - Running On Empty

Posted by b at 17:54 UTC | Comments (290)

November 23, 2022

Ukraine - Lights Out, No Water And Soon No Heat

Earlier today the Russian military shut down the Ukrainian electricity network.

Previous attacks had limited the distribution capacity to some 50% of demand. Controlled blackouts over several hours per day allowed to give some electricity for a few hours to most parts of the country. The attack today created a much larger problem. Not only were distribution networks attacked but also so the elements that connect Ukraine's electricity production facilities to the distribution network. All four nuclear power stations of Ukraine with their 15 reactors are now in shutdown mode.


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Kiev along with most other cities of Ukraine no longer has electricity.

Moldavia is likewise effected as it received some 20% of its electricity from Ukraine. When the Ukrainian network shut down the only local thermal power plant shut down too. It is likely that it can be switched on again but that can be a complicate process.

Limited electricity imports from the European system into Ukraine may still be possible but that electricity would only be available in Ukraine's western cities.

Before today's attack the Washington Post reported of the difficulties in repairing the network. As we ad explained before the Russian attacks are hitting the transformers that connect the national 330 kilovolt backbone network. These are hard to replace:

Cont. reading: Ukraine - Lights Out, No Water And Soon No Heat

Posted by b at 16:56 UTC | Comments (406)

November 22, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-206

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 16:47 UTC | Comments (289)

Open (Not Ukraine) Thread 2022-205

News & views NOT related the war in Ukraine ...

Posted by b at 16:46 UTC | Comments (192)

November 21, 2022

Ukraine - No Way To Peace Without Further War

A week ago I welcomed the talks between CIA director Bill Burns and the director of Russia's Foreign Intelligence Service Sergei Naryshkin but was skeptical of any outcome:

There will be no ceasefire now but the talks are good anyway. Both sides should do there best to keep them going.

Russia has asked for a lot: a pullback of NATO to its 1997 position, four parts of Ukraine to become parts of Russia, a guarantee that Ukraine will never join NATO. The U.S. is certainly not willing to commit to those steps - at least not yet.

It will need time and many more talks for the U.S. to come to its senses and to make the necessary concessions to end the conflict.

It will also require the defeat of the Ukrainian military, and anyone who joins it, on the battle field. Russia can do that if it concentrates on that effort.

Since then Russia released another salvo of missiles on the electricity network of Ukraine. This confirmed that the talks were not moving in a positive direction.

Now Yves Smith and Gilbert Doctorow name additional handicaps to the necessary compromises that could end the war.

Smith starts be examining the recent utterances from the U.S. side. There is no sign in them that anyone within the Biden administration is seeking some way towards peace. General Milley, who went public with talk suggestion after he had lost the internal discussion, was in fact whistled back:

Some of the close watchers of the Russia-Ukraine conflict have been talking up the prospects of peace talks. As we’ll discuss shortly, your humble blogger thinks this view is not currently well aligned with reality. Yes, things look to have thawed to the point that the US has backed off of worst-than-the-darkest-days-of-cold-war non-communication with Russia. But while thawing from close to absolute zero to a mere deep freeze is technically warming, it’s still awfully frigid. The two sides have zero bargaining overlap in their positions, which means no basis for discussions.

Another problem with talks is that there is no one to talk to. The Ukrainian comedian Zelensky is not in a position where he can give up and stay alive:

Cont. reading: Ukraine - No Way To Peace Without Further War

Posted by b at 17:19 UTC | Comments (351)

November 20, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-204

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 14:29 UTC | Comments (307)

The MoA Week In Review - (Not Ukraine) OT 2022-203

Last week's posts on Moon of Alabama:

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Other issues:

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Posted by b at 14:27 UTC | Comments (164)

November 19, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-202

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 16:18 UTC | Comments (335)

November 18, 2022

Behind The Crypto Scam - "Complete Absence Of Trustworthy Financial Information"

Yves Smith of Naked Capitalism, who called everything crypto 'prosecution futures', provides the latest FTX bankruptcy filing:

John J. Ray III, the newly appointed CEO of bankrupt crypto player FTX’s sprawling empire who played the same role in the then-biggest-evah Enron bankruptcy and other big corporate implosions, filed his formal initial assessment with the Delaware bankruptcy court in the form of declaration, embedded below.

As expected the FTX and the companies related to it are a huge criminal mess.

In point 5 of his filing the new CEO is not holding back:

Never in my career have I seen such a complete failure of corporate controls and such a complete absence of trustworthy financial information as occurred here. From compromised systems integrity and faulty regulatory oversight abroad, to the concentration of control in the hands of a very small group of inexperienced, unsophisticated and potentially compromised individuals, this situation is unprecedented. ...

"Potentially compromised individuals" might refer to rampant use of drugs at FTX. But it could also point to some darker connections.

More from Yves:

Cont. reading: Behind The Crypto Scam - "Complete Absence Of Trustworthy Financial Information"

Posted by b at 18:16 UTC | Comments (176)