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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 (124)

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 (108)

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 (356)

Open (Not Ukraine) Thread 2022-212

I will have to take off today to finish my Christmas backing. I will make plenty of these today as well as other ones. They will be send out to friends and family to arrive at St. Nicolas day, December 6.

News & views not related to the Ukraine conflict ...

Posted by b at 15:22 UTC | Comments (135)

November 29, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-211

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 19:23 UTC | Comments (295)

More On The Crypto Scam - "There's A Sucker Born Every Minute."

The FTX crypto bezzle continues to make waves.

Yves Smith remarks on Sam Bankman-Fried, the front-man of the fraud:

Yours truly must admit that if SBF does participate in the New York Times Dealbook conference on the 30th as scheduled, it would either indicates that his judgement is severely impaired and he is ignoring legal advice or he has good reason to believe that his risk of being prosecuted is extremely low. Given the rush of press stories that go insanely easy on this crypto grifter by skipping over inconvenient facts, like SBF “borrowing” over $3 billion that appears to have gone poof (see one shredded below), one has to suspect that the Southern District of New York effort to develop a case is unserious.

Mind you, this is not over until the fat lady sings. What it took with the very connected Elizabeth Holmes was tenacious reporting by the Wall Street Journal, which refused to back down in the face of thuggish threats by star litigator David Boies (and despite, or perhaps because, Rupert Murdoch had invested $125 million in Theranos). There’s a lot of Silicon Valley money riding on the crypto project. A full or even partial but revealing expose of what went on at FTX and Alameda could readily cast more well warranted doubt on the entire ecosystem.

The New York Times and other top news sites are running cover for the FTX culprits:

A piece on the interconnections between Bankman-Fried’s exchange (FTX) and the investment company he controlled (Alameda) soft-pedaled the outright illegality of his making trades with customer funds. To hear the Times tell it, “Alameda’s need for funds to run its trading business was a big reason Mr. Bankman-Fried created FTX in 2019. But the way the two entities were set up meant that trouble in one unit shook up the other as crypto prices began to drop in the spring.”

But that’s not what happened. When customers demanded their money, Fried didn’t have it, because he had been using it and losing it, illegally, for his own trades.

Not only that. To me the most egregious part of the FTX story is the use of 'tokens' which essentially were some kind of discount ticket one could buy to trade on better terms:

Cont. reading: More On The Crypto Scam - "There's A Sucker Born Every Minute."

Posted by b at 17:20 UTC | Comments (169)

November 28, 2022

Ukraine War - A Contentious Graveyard In Poland

An independent Polish news site, Niezaleizny Dziennik Polityczny, has an interesting piece about Polish losses in the war in Ukraine.

I can not confirm the reports veracity but since at least 2014 the site has regularly published several news and opinion pieces per day. It seems to be opposed to the current conservative PiS led government in Poland.

Below is the machine translated Polish text:

A shameful end. American quarters for Polish mercenaries

In early November, the regional media announced plans to create burials similar to American war cemeteries in Olsztyn. The reports sparked a wave of indignation, both among the city's residents and Poles across the country. "This is a necropolis for Poles? We are from a different culture ”this is how indignant users in social media reacted to the strange ideas of the city council.
...
The municipal cemetery in Dywity is the main necropolis in Olsztyn and covers over 35 ha. Today it is loud about it all over Poland, because soon it will look like a war cemetery in the USA. It has to be like in an American movie. A large lawn with identical tombstones on it. Without trees, benches, angels bending over the dead. The tombstones will be the same, they will only differ in color. Their manufacturers provided for only three: black, gray and red-brown.

The main reason for the creation of the American cemetery in Olsztyn was the drastically increased number of burials in the region, mainly soldiers' graves.

This situation has become a real problem for the local government of Olsztyn, where the 16th Pomeranian Mechanized Division is stationed. Almost daily military funerals combined with volleys of honor began to irritate the residents and provoked numerous questions to the city administration and the command of the 16th Division. To avoid additional publicity of the problem, the authorities decided to create a separate "American" cemetery.
...
After the outbreak of the war in Ukraine in February this year, President Andrzej Duda and Minister of National Defense Mariusz Błaszczak officially called on Poles to join the ranks of mercenaries and fight on the side of the Kiev regime. Among the fighters who went to war were professional soldiers of the 16th Mechanized Division and veterans of the unit living in the region.

During the 10 months of bloody fighting, according to information from publicly available sources, over 1,200 Polish citizens died in Ukraine, including soldiers and veterans of the 16th PDZ. The number of injured and maimed people also amounts to several thousand.

The number of wounded is probably three times the number of dead, though that can vary depending on the war's circumstance. It means that in total some 4800 men of the Polish contingent in Ukraine were wounded or killed. Is that one third of the Polish 'mercenary' forces in Ukraine? Is it more? Or less?

Cont. reading: Ukraine War - A Contentious Graveyard In Poland

Posted by b at 16:16 UTC | Comments (284)

November 27, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-210

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

The current open thread for other issues is here.


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

Posted by b at 13:04 UTC | Comments (341)

The MoA Week In Review - (Not Ukraine) OT 2022-209

Last week's posts on Moon of Alabama:

> Last summer in the Donbas region, the Ukrainians were firing 6,000 to 7,000 artillery rounds each day, a senior NATO official said. The Russians were firing 40,000 to 50,000 rounds per day.

By comparison, the United States produces only 15,000 rounds each month.
...
The shortage in 155-mm artillery shells “is probably the big one that has the planners most concerned,” Mr. Cancian said.

“If you want to increase production capability of 155 shells,” he said, “it’s going to be probably four to five years before you start seeing them come out the other end.” <

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Other issues:

Cont. reading: The MoA Week In Review - (Not Ukraine) OT 2022-209

Posted by b at 13:00 UTC | Comments (333)

November 26, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-208

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

The current open thread for other issues is here.

From a New York Times piece today:

Artillery Is Breaking in Ukraine. It’s Becoming a Problem for the Pentagon.

Cont. reading: Ukraine Open Thread 2022-208

Posted by b at 16:19 UTC | Comments (265)