Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
April 19, 2022

Russia Has Launched Phase Two Of Its Operation In Ukraine

The neo-conservative 'Institute for the Study of War' (ISW) releases daily 'Russian offensive campaign assessments'. A lot of people in Washington DC seem to read them.

They are of course pure propaganda only slightly aligned with the actual tactical situation in the Ukraine. I confess that I read them once a while purely for my amusement.

Their main source seems to be the Ukrainian defense ministry which is of course lying left and right about the state of the war.

This for example is from their assessment from Sunday, April 17:

Russian forces continued to amass on the Izyum axis and in eastern Ukraine, increasingly including low-quality proxy conscripts, in parallel with continuous – and unsuccessful – small-scale attacks. Russian forces did not take any territory on the Izyum axis or in Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts in the past 24 hours. Russian forces deploying to eastern Ukraine reportedly continue to face significant morale and supply issues and appear unlikely to intend, or be able to, conduct a major offensive surge in the coming days. Deputy Ukrainian Minister of Defense Anna Malyar stated on April 17 that the Russian military is in no hurry to launch an offensive in eastern Ukraine, having learned from their experience from Kyiv – but Russian forces continue localized attacks and are likely unable to amass the cohesive combat power necessary for a major breakthrough.

I have no idea how anyone could have come to those conclusions.

  • "appear unlikely to intend, or be able to, conduct a major offensive surge in the coming days"


  • "the Russian military is in no hurry to launch an offensive in eastern Ukraine"


  • likely unable to amass the cohesive combat power necessary for a major breakthrough

What are these guys smoking?

Yesterday evening heavy artillery attacks on Ukrainian frontline positions announced the launch of the expected offensive.

Belatedly ISW took note of that:

ISW @TheStudyofWar - 23:40 UTC · Apr 18, 2022
#Donetsk and #Luhansk Oblasts Update:
#Russian forces likely began large-scale offensive operations in Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts on April 18. These offensive operations are unlikely to be dramatically more successful than failed operations around #Kyiv.

Today the start of phase two of the Russian operation was officially announced:

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Tuesday that Moscow was starting a new stage of what it calls its special military operation in Ukraine which he predicted would be a significant development.

"Another stage of this operation (in eastern Ukraine) is beginning and I am sure this will be a very important moment of this entire special operation", Lavrov said in an interview with the India Today TV channel.

After the heavy artillery preparations last night several offensives were launched into multiple directions.

Source - bigger

A major one is from Izyum (in the upper left on the map) towards Slovyansk. The distance between the two cities is 27 miles (47km).

Several villages on that route have already been taken. The "low quality proxy conscript" who "continue to face significant morale and supply issues", as ISW claims, might have something to do with that.

Phase two will include the liberation of all of Donetzk and Luhansk as demarcated on the above map by the dashed red lines.  

I expect the whole phase two operation to take four to six weeks with maybe some extra time necessary to clean up the well defended cities Kramatorsk and Slovyansk.

Questions remain. Will there be a third phase? What will it include?

Posted by b on April 19, 2022 at 17:49 UTC | Permalink

« previous page | next page »

Can anyone provide any information about this (part of this)?

Underneath the photos it simply says "Photo from the crash site of a Ukrainian Su-24 bomber recently destroyed by the Russian Armed Forces in the Kharkiv region." which to me is pretty uninformative, as the photos do not seem to be a crashed Su-24 aircraft. It looks more like a tank with what might be spray equipment.

In the last couple of days I saw a reference (that time with no pictures) to a claim that some equipment was found in a bunker overrun by the DPR, allegedly for spray dispensing biological weapons - this there some connection with this photo? (evidently not the same object, maybe this was a weapon attached to the crashed aircraft?)

I don't have or use telegram, so maybe I am missing a part of the post.

Posted by: BM | Apr 20 2022 10:09 utc | 301

Scorpion | Apr 20 2022 0:20 utc | 176

I live in Norway, and find it reassuring to have the vast land-mass of Russia between us and China.

The aglo-american empire is right at our door-step. They made us starve during the Napoleonic wars, and have been power-playing us ever since.

Posted by: Anne B | Apr 20 2022 10:14 utc | 302

Perhaps too much to hope for but the seeds of an enmity between Zionist State Judaism and Orthodox Christian are perhaps germinating anew:

A top aide to Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that the transfer of church property in Jerusalem’s Old City to Moscow’s hands is at the top of the Israeli-Russian diplomatic agenda.
Last month, the Jerusalem District Court annulled a decision giving the Russian government control of Alexander’s Courtyard.
The verdict was given following a petition by the Orthodox Palestine Society of the Holy Land, which owned the property until last year.

It would be interesting to see how Putin handles this as an apparent champion of the Eastern Orthodox Christian World.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Apr 20 2022 10:19 utc | 303

Chuzpah is strong with Ukrainian ones.

Allegedly ukro-commander of Marupol Sergey Volhyna: we do not want to surrender, we do not want to die, so someone must drive us out of Russian siege.

Not bad.

Posted by: Arioch | Apr 20 2022 10:53 utc | 304

A cpl of thoughts on social media and the Ukraine war:

For me, it has become apparent that the main influencer in shaping political narratives now is twitter. Pro Russian accounts have been silenced for only slightly overstepping the rules (gore videos). They were posting videos and pictures as the main sources of information on twitter. Since twitter was censoring them, they moved to telegram, kept publishing the content there and only posted a written description on twitter with links to telegram channels. So everybody can look for the real stuff on telegram.

My takeaway from this: Censorship does not work, has never worked, because ppl find ways to communicate and spread information. The business model of twitter relies on user conent. Since twitter works hand in gloves with the US security state and let them censor conent that goes aginst the US desired narrative, it acts against its own interests and helps telegram to replace it for key conent. Twitter then only becomes the initial hook to reach a big audience. Over time, twitter may very likely go the way of other former social media giants like myspace.

Posted by: Arne Hartmann | Apr 20 2022 11:02 utc | 305

@ Rasta | Apr 19 2022 19:00 utc
Your questions on the Muslim aspect of RF Forces in OP Z can be mostly explained by study of the Chechnian(sp?) War and President Putin's policies of modernizing the region and assimilating all faiths and cultures under the Russian Flag. He recently spoke to the diversity of the country being a major strength.

Posted by: Colin | Apr 20 2022 11:09 utc | 306

----I remember reading something in the gay guardian on chechens killing the fighters of sleeper cells then booting out the families and raising the homes. The little tykes will grow up to be just like daddy.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Apr 20 2022 1:24 utc | 206

Sounds like IDF to me. Another example of their projection?

Posted by: Anne B | Apr 20 2022 11:13 utc | 307

@Scorpion | Apr 20 2022 4:57 utc | 264

Very insightful comment, thank you!

Posted by: Norwegian | Apr 20 2022 11:18 utc | 308

Maybe this is old news to you all - if so I apologize. But yesterday I saw this video of Zelensky, seemingly under the influence of cocaine (which is still visible on his desk):

Actually, when Putin called the Ukrainian government a band of Neo-Nazis and drug-addicts, I gave the drug addict part not much credit and disregarded it as propaganda. But probably I should have known better, since I never before heard Putin make baseless accusations of that kind. it as it may....but a most interesting detail can be found in a speech of Annalena Baerbock - German minister of foreign affairs - at the MSC in Munich, at the end of february. There she made one of her already notorious slips of the tongue. She wanted to say that she had recently been to the "Ostukraine" (i.e. the Eastern Ukraine), but instead she said she had been to the "Ostkokaine" - i.e. the "Eastern Cocaine" !

After having seen the above mentioned video of Zelensky, I'm almost convinced that his must have been a Freudian slip.

Posted by: Helmuth von Moltke | Apr 20 2022 11:30 utc | 309

RWA hearing unconfirmed reports of Ukrainian troops pulling back in the Rubezhnoye-Severodonetsk-Lisichansk area.

If this is true, then so far as I can see Russia has two options.

1. Decimate the retreating troops via air attacks.

2. Push the retreating troops all the way out of Donbass without decimating them.

The danger with (2) is that it will allow the Ukrainian troops to set up positions within any towns/cities on the path outward, and this would lead to a bunch of miniature Mariupols.

The danger with (1) is that the sudden and overwhelming destruction of thousands of Ukrainian troops will be anticipated as pushing the US/NATO propagandists into a corner, which might lead them to make a rash decision. It is not in the interest of Russia to have US/NATO escalate their involvement further.

My own view is that, at this point, the best option, unfortunately, is (1). But I am not convinced that Russia's aim is the decimation of Ukrainian forces, especially if they anticipate that this will lead to US/NATO escalation. I believe that Russia is *prepared* to counter such escalation if it occurs; but I also believe that RUssia would far prefer to avoid it if at all possible. I am not sure that it is possible, regardless of what occurs. But I imagine there are differing views about this in Russian command at highest levels.

Posted by: WJ | Apr 20 2022 11:43 utc | 310

It is a mistake to assume that the December statements of NATO back to 1997 borders must be accomplished now or even via military means. First, nobody will question that Russia means what it says now nor will most assume that Russia can be “diplomatically” bullied into compliance with US demands. That changes the position of pieces on the board pretty significantly.

Eastern NATO is being disarmed because the US is idiotic and thinks that Ukraine is the last battle that must be won. (Though in a way, it is correct because now the empire is in danger of being undermined politically and economically.) By stopping somewhere in Ukraine, Russia gives all those Eastern European countries time to consider events and futures. Right now there is focused thought on war. The changed landscape needs to be allowed time for consideration.

I’m of the opinion that you leave the far west because it was never part of Russia and because it provides the opportunity to give the hardcore nationalists somewhere to go, where they will be Europe’s problem.

Russia retains escalation dominance both militarily and economically. The sanctions blow back will increase exponentially with time, and both Europe and the US have multiple election cycles in the near future. Better for Russia to consolidate its gains in Ukraine and start the rebuilding process for the benefit of Ukrainians. Put the effort into domestic and Asian reorientation of economics. And let the west stew. Almost certainly as things are going new flashpoints will arise that the empire has to deal with (likely first in the Shia crescent).

Russia has lots of time and the advantage, if it can consolidate it’s initial goals in Ukraine. For as long as there are active hostilities, the west’s propaganda machine can run at 100%, hiding the other issues. But without kinetic war that propaganda losses effectiveness. The longer active conflict continues, the greater the opportunity for Russia to suffer a significant defeat or for other nations to directly enter the conflict. Personally, I’d like to avoid nuclear escalation and that risk grows every day there is large scale fighting.

Posted by: Lex | Apr 20 2022 12:01 utc | 311

WJ | Apr 20 2022 11:43 utc | 310

The Russians are pushing them out of their pre-fortified positions, for which they used eight years to prepare.
This movement will almost certainly continue along the whole line of the Luhansk/Donbass front.

The Ukrainians will then have to make do with rapidly found hiding places and cities as "standing" points. More visible and easier to hit. While allowing the superior mobility of the Russian forces to be used.

Posted by: Stonebird | Apr 20 2022 12:05 utc | 312

Posted by: WJ | Apr 20 2022 11:43 utc | 310

Hope they take first option as really that is the second option,as they didn't surrender.
Russia is not pussy footing around now,it's at War already with Nato.
It will put its own troops safety first.hence the massive airial and stand-off artillery strikes.

Posted by: Kim | Apr 20 2022 12:05 utc | 313

----The tragedy is that the left has been muzzled and made to appear as if it has abandoned the stage. Their self-help seems to be lacking as well. So it goes.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 20 2022 3:19 utc | 246

They lost their socioeconomic way during the seventies. As most others they didn't really grasp how the petro-dollar worked.

When the eighties came by, they didn't had depleted their tools-box, mostly by in-fight.

My mom- who, was schooled by her union, turned out to have a better understanding of how things worked, than I ever learned at university.

I had to read Michael Hudson, Steve Keen and a host of others to understand that.

Posted by: Anne B | Apr 20 2022 12:09 utc | 314

I have noticed that reports of cyber crimes in the U.S. seems to have dropped. Is this true or merely my perception? Has the call for the defense of Ukraine turned these armchair warriors towards military oriented employment or is there more sure money selling free weapons from the west to ready customers on the web?
Are there any readers here who monitor cyber crime?

Posted by: Anonymouse | Apr 20 2022 12:10 utc | 315

Bad eyesight no didn't

Posted by: Anne B | Apr 20 2022 12:10 utc | 316

---Every single post here is just an opinion, including yours, unless people are cutting and pasting or translating formal announcements. Its very stressful being right all the time, just post and don't worry about it so much.

Posted by: K | Apr 20 2022 8:36 utc | 287

That is also my opinion, all puns intended. I come here to read, get links and think out loud - what more can one ask for?

Posted by: Anne B | Apr 20 2022 12:20 utc | 317

Russia needs to take and then hold the land.

The holding and ensuring security within an area will be a large task. I think that Russia had hoped that there would not be so much destruction and the fortunate and able have left.

I believe that realistically the third phase which has begun is to ensure that the rest of Banderland will not be in a position to harm others and to hold NATO in money losing quagmire. Not sure what can be done about the nazi component.

I imagine it was hoped that Ukraine would see the reality and come to terms for sake of people, but US/UK et al are ensuring that that cannot happen - imagine Zelensky has nice retirement plan.

Posted by: jared | Apr 20 2022 12:20 utc | 318

@ Don Bacon 257

Greetings from Southern Taiwan and thanks for the lines of verse from Let's Already Do It Again (2007).

How the years speed past while the dreary sequence of U.S. administrations keep doing "it" (meaning Imperial Militarism) again and again. I've only written a few verse arrangements so far this year -- mostly from the beginning of January 2022 -- and nothing yet dealing with the events of the past two months. As soon as some inspiration takes hold of me and compels me to start writing down the words and phrases in a particular arrangement, I'll try to post the results here. In the meantime, I can only wait and observe like everybody else.

Posted by: Michael Murry | Apr 20 2022 12:26 utc | 319

@uncle tungsten | Apr 20 2022 2:17 utc | 231

Finland - the PM is yet another Young Global Leader intent on crashing the economy of their own country.

Posted by: cirsium | Apr 20 2022 12:32 utc | 320

It is interesting to know, useful to be aware of the existance of such publications. This must be the source of the inanity at our major disinformation outlets.

I am glad that some rational people have the intelectual grounding strong enough to permit themselves to view such surealism and then return to reality. I suppose a sense of humor is useful as a defense mechanism.

I would not have believed this if I had not lived through it.

Posted by: jared | Apr 20 2022 12:37 utc | 321

@ Posted by: cirsium | Apr 20 2022 12:32 utc | 320

Serving his country is of course not the issue.
He is a traitor and an imposter - as are our leaders in the US.

Posted by: jared | Apr 20 2022 12:40 utc | 322

Posted by: Republicofscotland | Apr 20 2022 8:21 utc | 285

I'm sure it's just pose, but if not he'll need a thick skin for when the Azov kids start hooting and throwing bananas. And some good Kevlar for when their hard-case Azov fathers start taking potshots.

Posted by: Herr Ringbone | Apr 20 2022 9:02 utc | 292

Posted by: Anne B | Apr 20 2022 12:42 utc | 323

---I never got what Putin was trying to achieve with bringing his dogs around Merkel. It seemed incredibly stupid and self-defeating, and the more so the more I've thought about it. Then again maybe he actually didn't know about her fear of dogs and it was an honest mistake.

Posted by: Unnamed | Apr 20 2022 9:58 utc | 299

A German leader sacred of dogs?
Maybe Merkel should've warned him?

Try google Putins dogs.

besides - it couldn't be worse than when Roosevelt's driving scared Churchill speechless.

Posted by: Anne B | Apr 20 2022 13:03 utc | 324

It seems Wimbledon is going to announce a total ban on Russian players. I hope the Russian people see this and acknowledge the UK (government) as an enemy. Thanks Bozo.

Posted by: Sundial | Apr 20 2022 13:11 utc | 325

It seems Wimbledon is going to announce a total ban on Russian players. I hope the Russian people see this and acknowledge the UK (government) as an enemy. Thanks Bozo.

Posted by: Sundial | Apr 20 2022 13:11 utc | 326

----It would be interesting to see how Putin handles this as an apparent champion of the Eastern Orthodox Christian World.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Apr 20 2022 10:19 utc | 303

To me it will be even more interesting if the US part of Christianity notice.

Covid have worked like a purge already - and more and more are being exposed.

The same phenomena is working in Israel- as this Ministry testifies

The Jewish orthodox rabbis, lost a lot of their control during lock-down, and they don't like it.

What the devil meant for evil, God turned into good.

Posted by: Anne B | Apr 20 2022 13:13 utc | 327

Foreign Azov militant who spoke before the Greek Parliament was killed in Mariupol

Posted by: Norwegian | Apr 20 2022 13:23 utc | 328

I did not know about Putin, Merkel and the dogs. Very naughty of Vlad, but also very funny. Just a tad of machismo there methinks.

Posted by: watcher | Apr 20 2022 13:25 utc | 329

Oh dear, oh dear, this satire from The Beaverton, as well as some recent news about Ukraine are stirring a distressing feeling within me. Perhaps I’ve been triggered. And I am wondering exactly what was the outcome from that teleconference meeting yesterday hosted by Biden.

Summary from Canada’s PM Trudeau

Satire courtesy of the Beaverton
School Board mandates that bullies begin performing “Lunch Money Acknowledgements”

“Look, this is a big board and we have lots of problems,” said Terrence Adams, Equity Coordinator for the Assiniboine Family of Schools. “With the Lunch Money Acknowledgements, we’re not going to do anything about anything, but we are going to agree that it’s messed up and that everyone should feel bad. It’s the least we can do, and we always do the least.”

5 million refugees from Ukraine, AP reports

“After spending weeks with no electricity or water in the basement of her family’s home in Ukraine, Viktoriya Savyichkina made a daring escape from the besieged city of Mariupol with her 9- and 14-year-old daughters.”

And a thoughtful analysis from the CBC: The war in Ukraine is changing and the west now faces a stark choice

“I think the bigger problem for us, or the bigger challenge — that's the collective 'us', this includes Canada — is we have to decide that we're going to win," retired U.S. lieutenant-general Ben Hodges told CBC News.

"It's not about just keeping Ukraine in the fight. It's about winning. And that means we're going to do everything necessary to make sure that Ukraine is successful that does not require putting American or Canadian or British troops on the ground." “

Posted by: Bruised Northerner | Apr 20 2022 13:27 utc | 330

I have just tried to access the website and apparently it is necessary to 'sign-in'. Does anyone know anything about that?

Posted by: MarkU | Apr 20 2022 13:29 utc | 331

RT has a story up about the inability of the US to track all the armaments they are pouring into the Ukraine. They admit that some might end up "in unexpected places". A Russian friend suggested weeks ago that the Ukrainian arms traffickers were likely to siphon off large quantities of the incoming stream to sell abroad, as they have a well established network already in place. Wonder how many new millionaires there are in the Ukraine since the start of the war?

Posted by: the pessimist | Apr 20 2022 13:31 utc | 332

I have just tried to access the website and apparently it is necessary to 'sign-in'. Does anyone know anything about that?

Posted by: MarkU | Apr 20 2022 13:29 utc | 331

I just got a "503 Service Temporarily Unavailable." Either temporary connection problem, server crash, or attack.

Posted by: malenkov | Apr 20 2022 13:35 utc | 333

I can't think of a war with less on-the-ground news coverage than this one.
That causes me to distrust both sides even more than I normally would.

Posted by: John Kirsch | Apr 20 2022 13:35 utc | 334

@John Kirsch check War Gonzo if you want news on the ground,there is no "both sides" here, Russian war correspondents have been covering this conflict since 2014

Posted by: Lolgege | Apr 20 2022 13:44 utc | 335

Biden vows to send Ukraine more artillery as Congress pushes for military aid czar

Biden told reporters during a trip to New Hampshire he would send more artillery to Ukraine as it fends off Russia’s invasion. And White House press secretary Jen Psaki noted the president discussed procuring more ammunition and security assistance for Kyiv during a Tuesday video call with the leaders of several U.S. allies, including Poland, Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Canada and Japan.
Additionally, Pentagon Press Secretary John Kirby said Tuesday the U.S. would “very soon” be training a small number of Ukrainian troops on American heavy artillery that was part of a package approved last week. Kirby said Ukraine’s forces, which also get supplies from European allies, “have received additional aircraft and the aircraft parts to help them get more more aircraft in the air.”
Sen. Rob Portman, R-Ohio, last week wrote a letter to Biden calling for a coordinator to “synchronize our whole of government approach to arming Ukraine.” It noted the coordinator also “would be able to serve as a liaison to our domestic industry partners that are being called on to not only ensure the steady flow of defense articles to Ukraine but also to replenish United States and allied stockpiles.”. .here

What happens to weapons sent to Ukraine? The US doesn't really know
The US has few ways to track the substantial supply of anti-tank, anti-aircraft and other weaponry it has sent across the border into Ukraine, sources tell CNN, a blind spot that's due in large part to the lack of US boots on the ground in the country -- and the easy portability of many of the smaller systems now pouring across the border. . ."We have fidelity for a short time, but when it enters the fog of war, we have almost zero," said one source briefed on US intelligence. "It drops into a big black hole, and you have almost no sense of it at all after a short period of time." . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Apr 20 2022 13:53 utc | 336

Ukraine receives fighter planes, parts to bolster air force says Pentagon.

As they say, I would bet "dollars to donuts" that the fighters flying those planes would not necessarily be Ukrainian pilots. Although the planes might be painted in those colors.

Posted by: Ursula Zandt | Apr 20 2022 13:59 utc | 337

Once again I must apologize to all the patrons of the bar for not reading ALL of the comments; I have little time today.

However @: Sushi | Apr 19 2022 18:49 utc | 25 -

I fully agree with the sentiments you expressed, and this conflict is surely about much more than Ukraine. My way of expressing it goes something like this: So long as the US possesses both the ability and the determination to interfere with the internal affairs of others - anywhere and everywhere around the globe - then humanity will remain stuck in the continuation of that human mindset at the heart of WWII. Indeed, it is not unrealistic to say that that conflict never really fully concluded. Or, as psychohistorian likes to say "The shitshow ends, when it ends." His comment upthread resembled yours, and this one from me.

So, if one agrees with my assessment, then there are two possible ends to that situation: the US either loses the ABILITY to continue in this pursuit, or it loses the DETERMINATION to do so. It would be better for all of humanity if the latter were to prevail, but there seems as yet to be no hint of sanity among our many and several masters. Single-mindedly holding on to the DETERMINATION leads me, at least, to the conclusion that the ABILITY will have to be removed by force. It won't happen from within, but will come from without. If I were a theistic religious type I'd say "God help us all." Since I am not, all I can say is "Oh f#$k."

Again, apologies for not reading all the serious and pertinent comments. How did this thread get so long, so quickly?

Posted by: vinnieoh | Apr 20 2022 14:03 utc | 338

some of the best maps of the RU-UE conflict are found on

Posted by: basho | Apr 20 2022 14:04 utc | 339

what if this?
what if that?
what about this oblast? what about that oblast?
do any of these "what iffers" ever read anything that S. Lavrov or V. Putin have said over and over again?
seems not.

Posted by: basho | Apr 20 2022 14:10 utc | 340

vinnieoh 338
The "DETERMINATION to do so" translates to an effort to make money.
Edward Abbey, anarchist: What's the difference between a whore and a congressman? A congressman makes more money.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Apr 20 2022 14:11 utc | 341

Russia has proof that the OSCE is spying for Ukraine in Ukraine.

"The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) collaborated with the Ukrainian government in its fight against the Donbass republics and tried to cover up offences by Ukrainian nationalist forces, Russia’s deputy representative to the UN told a UN Security Council meeting on Tuesday.

The accusations came as Dmitry Polyansky blasted Western powers, saying they were being hypocritical regarding the security crisis in Ukraine. The US and its allies pursue their own selfish interests rather than the interests of the Ukrainian people, when they fan hostilities in the east European country, the diplomat said.

“We obtained the latest proof of how dirty your tricks are in building a ‘rules-based order’ when we discovered proof that the OSCE special monitoring mission in Ukraine simply spied for Kiev instead of recording violations of the ceasefire,” he claimed. The official said Russia was collecting more evidence to make the case against the monitors."

And there's this as well, you'll need to use YT translate in settings.

Posted by: Republicofscotland | Apr 20 2022 14:11 utc | 342

Posted by: Flying Dutchman | Apr 20 2022 5:41 utc | 270

"It's true Putin also said, "At the same time, our plans do not include the occupation of Ukrainian territories. We are not going to impose anything on anyone by force."

Don't have quote handy but in Lavrov's interview he was asked about referenda etc.

So I think what they are saying basically is that they are not going to impose an occupation regime on Ukraine once military operations cease rather allow the people to conduct referenda on whether they want to stay inside Ukraine proper, form independent republics or petition to join Russia etc. The people will decide, that's the main point, moreover in a free, fair and no doubt internationally monitored democratic process as happened in Crimea.

So that part is relatively simple, though obviously requiring considerable sacrifice of blood and treasure.

Meanwhile, the West is getting exposed every day they continue this. The most effective blow delivered thus far, imo, was Putin's epic rhetorical kill shot: 'The Empire of Lies.' The Saker has expanded it to 'the Empire of Lies and Hate' but I think Putin's is better. Says it all in one punch. That line is going to be repeated all over the world for quite a while - at least until that Empire of Lies is no more. Truth hurts.

I honestly don't know if the China-Russia-Eurasia civilization they are clearly trying to build will be a good or a bad thing. It could end up being a techno-fascist post-confucian dystopia. But if Europe would get on board having detached from the AngloZionist bankster-run stranglehold on the entire West and her peoples, then possibly that new civilization could combine the best of post-Enlightenment sovereignty-based perspectives and laws with the clearly superior administrative skills of the neo-confucian Chinese and the deep pride and integrity of the Russian people and huge globe-spanning territory featuring 11 time zones. There is cause for optimism but I think the Eurasian civilization would be a much better bet if Europe was a part of it and not apart from it.

That said, it looks like a little tough love is in order. Europe is going to be sent to bed early without supper for a little while and made to consider the error of its ways. I suspect that Russia will be working overtime to prize Germany away first. If they can pull that off, the rest will follow. Hate to say this but a large bomb on that parliament building in Brussels might accelerate the whole thing considerably!

Posted by: Scorpion | Apr 20 2022 14:12 utc | 343

Ursula Zandt | Apr 20 2022 13:59 utc | 337

Good point (and I saw that article also.) However, those pilots would have to be those already trained to fly those particular aircraft - no time or rationale for OJT in an active conflict. Would those same contributing countries also supply those pilots? Would those pilots have anything to say about that?

Posted by: vinnieoh | Apr 20 2022 14:12 utc | 344

Netflix takes a huge in Russia, with more pain to come for the US company.

"American streaming service Netflix has seen a massive loss of $40 billion in market capitalization after the company reported its first customer decline in more than a decade.

The company said the number of subscribers in its first quarter dropped by 200,000, falling well short of its forecast of adding 2.5 million subscribers. The suspension of service in Russia over the Ukraine conflict led to the loss of 700,000 users."

"The abrupt shift in fortune for the streaming platform comes after months of success during strict pandemic-related lockdowns. Netflix has lost nearly half of its value since January, when the firm warned of weak subscriber growth.

The company expects deeper losses ahead, as inflation and fierce competition contribute to a heavy decline in the number of users apart from the Russia exit. The streaming platform forecasts it would lose two million subscribers in the spring quarter."

Posted by: Republicofscotland | Apr 20 2022 14:22 utc | 345

@Republicofscotland | Apr 20 2022 14:22 utc | 344

Unfortunately I am not a customer, so I can't contribute to the downwards trend.

Posted by: Norwegian | Apr 20 2022 14:35 utc | 346

@vinnieoh | Apr 20 2022 14:12 utc | 343

Lacking a formal declaration of war from the respective home countries, such pilots would classify as mercenaries I guess?

Posted by: Norwegian | Apr 20 2022 14:38 utc | 347

Don Bacon | Apr 20 2022 14:11 utc | 340

Here is affirmation of your comment, as posted to Consortium News:

Gold Rush in Ukraine

[[ I previewed this comment - link seemed to be constructed correctly. ]]

Posted by: vinnieoh | Apr 20 2022 14:41 utc | 348

@vinnieoh | Apr 20 2022 14:12 utc | 343

Who knows what any pilot might decide to do? Particularly if it can be presented as an opportunity to help Uncle Sammie, and maybe a promotion, and some future stories or pick up opportunities. ("When I was flying over Ukraine," the pilot told the pretty girl at the bar, "of course, I can't say much about that - Top Secret, but they asked me, personally....")

There might be an appropriate Texas Air National Guard hole in the military record. ("In 2022, Captain Topgun was transferred to Moldova to count helicopters. All records lost in unexplained fire.")

Of course, as a pilot it comes with the thrill that you would not want to parachute out of a downed plane, particularly if the winds are blowing to the east.

Posted by: Ursula Zandt | Apr 20 2022 14:48 utc | 349

Posted by: Anne B | Apr 20 2022 11:13 utc | 307

"raising their homes" sounds really good - quite a gift

In English "razing their homes [to the ground] " is considered very bad.

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | Apr 20 2022 15:04 utc | 350

Posted by: Don Bacon | Apr 20 2022 13:53 utc | 336

a blind spot that's due in large part to the lack of US boots on the ground in the country

I doubt Americans on the ground have any better idea what is going on - they certainly had no idea in Afghan

The report also stated that, “Of the 474,823 total serial numbers recorded in OVERLORD, 43 percent, or 203,888 weapons, had missing information and/or duplication.” It also added that there were several instances where serial numbers of weapons were “repeated two or three times” in OVERLORD as well as in SCIP.

Many of the nearly 750,000 weapons handed over by the U.S. Department of Defense to Afghan forces, could “go on the black market and enter another country,” Jeffrey Brown, senior audit manager for SIGAR, told The Washington Times.

29. July 2014

Quite why you think the US Military is any more cognisant of what is going on than its Commander-in-Chief bemuses me. There has never been any evidence that the US Military is not simply selling weapons on the Black Market and equipping criminal gangs where it proves profitable to serving military personnel

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | Apr 20 2022 15:10 utc | 351

Posted by: financial matters | Apr 20 2022 1:16 utc | 201

Succinctly said, financial matters -- thank you!

Posted by: juliania | Apr 20 2022 15:14 utc | 352

I suspect that Russia will be working overtime to prize Germany away first.

I suspect you are barking up the wrong tree Scorpion. [342]. Lenin had hopes for Germany in 1918 with Spartakists and got the Freikorps. Stalin sent weapons to the Communist uprisings in 1923 in Thuringia and Dortmund - but France and Belgium occupied the Ruhr and the Weimar Inflation started during the General Strike.

Hitler stopped the Military Cooperation 1919-1933 and removed Germans from the USSR -

Stalin offered a United Neutral Germany 1950 but was rebuffed by Adenauer under US control.

Germany is a great disillusionment to Russia. Putin speaks German and knows Leipzig and Dresden but has failed to get any real cooperation from Germany so that policy is shattered.

Putin tried to be open to the West as did Gorbachev but it has been an abject failure. Now the other factions in the Stavka have a stronger hand and Putin is serving his last term.His succesor will come from a more intense anti-German stance. If any country is attractive to Russia as a potential interlocutor in West it is France under new management.

Germany is now a has-been both geopolitically and industrially. China will replace Germany and dispense with its exports to China

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | Apr 20 2022 15:20 utc | 353

Starting today Strategic Culture site is asking for user name and password, hate to loose reading AC’s analysis, anybody has any Idea how to signup and get access, thanks for your help


Posted by: Kooshy | Apr 20 2022 15:28 utc | 354

"Why does anyone listen to these people?"

Posted by: Kingsman | Apr 20 2022 1:22 utc | 203

Yesterday I enjoyed my first restaurant meal in 2 years - at a converted New Mexico farmhouse across from a feedstore. The chief waitress, a lovely lady, beamingly told us she had become this after being for many years a school principal.

These are the people to listen to!

Posted by: juliania | Apr 20 2022 15:34 utc | 355

Posted by: Scorpion | Apr 20 2022 14:12 utc | 342

I don't know how it will all turn out either, but the US has become a "danger to itself and others". not a lot of data on major world transformations in the nuclear age--the USSR dissolved voluntarily. the US is bent on the opposite course, apparently.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Apr 20 2022 15:39 utc | 356

@Kooshy 353

Thanks for your post. I also tried to visit Strategic Culture and was asked the same thing. I thought maybe the site took a personal dislike to my IP address. I hope you find an access route and hook me up

Trump is calling the warmongers out. Fancy Trump being the adult in the idiot packed room Heh?

Posted by: DaVinci | Apr 20 2022 15:39 utc | 357

Posted by: Kooshy | Apr 20 2022 15:28 utc | 353

Pinned post on SC telegram channel:

Strategic Culture Foundation, [20.04.2022 13:58]
💡Dear followers,

Due to migration to another server ⚙️, our website may be temporarily unavailable. Please, don’t worry, we continue as usual!


Posted by: AlexH | Apr 20 2022 15:43 utc | 358

Strategic Culture
just shifting to another server.
No problems, takes some hours.

Posted by: njet | Apr 20 2022 15:45 utc | 359

Posted by: DaVinci | Apr 20 2022 15:39 utc | 356

Well, these are all because we are the most democratic free country mankind ever experienced, and a constitution like no other that grantees free speech and access to free speech. This false and BS has been successfully institutionalized in the belief of this people. Nevertheless my feeling from experience is that the, system feels the threat and fears loosing control. Look forward to that. Hope someone can help to find a way to keep readin SC site

Posted by: Kooshy | Apr 20 2022 15:53 utc | 360

Ursula Zandt @348 -
The hole in the military record of the Texas Air National Guard is a reference to George W. Bush' AWOL year? I give him credit for enough intelligence to avoid the task of landing an F-102 on a carrier after his first and only failed attempt.

As to record fires, apparently they do happen. I went to the VA a decade or so ago to see what they might do for me regarding healthcare. Had my DD 214 and Honorable Discharge docs with me, but they couldn't help me because my records of service are not in their system. Clerk said that he had heard of a fire in their docs warehouse in the mid-60s somewhere in the midwest. Good thing that I didn't need their help, I guess.

Posted by: Paul Spencer | Apr 20 2022 15:54 utc | 361

---I never got what Putin was trying to achieve with bringing his dogs around Merkel.

Posted by: Anne B | Apr 20 2022 13:03 utc | 324

Unfair advantage?

Very naughty of Vlad, but also very funny. Just a tad of machismo there methinks.

Posted by: watcher | Apr 20 2022 13:25 utc | 329

All the above. Only a tad?

I can't stand Hillary, but Vlad's prowling dogs bit reminds me of Trump circling and hovering over Hillary at one of their debates.

If Le Pen wins, he better not bring his dogs to the Élysée Palace or it'll be (pardon the pun) a cats and dogs showdown with France. She'll never speak to him again!

Of course if he's nice to her cats; he'll have her eating out of the palm of his hand. I see a great opportunity to get France out of NATO and maybe soften her position on China too.

Posted by: Circe | Apr 20 2022 15:57 utc | 362

" favourite reminder to all of that is it is the facts on the ground that matter.. not the so called facts in newspapers and gossip columns!

Posted by: james | Apr 20 2022 2:27 utc | 233

Love it, james; love it!

Posted by: juliania | Apr 20 2022 16:02 utc | 363

Posted by: vinnieoh | Apr 20 2022 14:03 utc | 338

I suspect a major inflection point will come at the time the western electorate begin to appreciate the costs their "leaders" have inflicted on them.

JP Morgan is predicting oil at $185 a bbl:

A full and immediate embargo is likely to hurt European consumers more than Russian producers in the near term. More importantly, a full, immediate ban would likely drive Brent crude oil prices to $185/bbl as more than 4 mbd of Russian oil supplies would be displaced with neither room nor time to re-route them to China, India, or other potential substitute buyers

Those members of the bar who lived through the OPEC oil embargo of the 1970's have a sense of what that price spike might imply.

The food price shocks will likely be significant. Then in the fall the real food price shocks will occur due to reduced shipment of Ukrainian and RF grains.

An early indication of social response will come April 24th with the French election. I suspect a move to oust Bojo in the UK and the Trudeau NDP to come under fire in Canada. Russia, China, India and the rest of the BRICS will likely be oceans of calm midst G7 social unrest and chaos.

Posted by: Sushi | Apr 20 2022 16:04 utc | 364

Pro-Russian blogger assassinated in Kherson:

[photo] [video]

Activist and blogger Valeriy Kuleshov, called pro-Russian by the Ukrainian media, has been assassinated in Kherson.

This was reported on social media by a member of the [Kherson] Oblast Council Sergey Khlan: “When examining the deceased, they found gunshot wounds to the head, body and hands.”

According to local media, Kuleshov’s car was shot at at 8:00 AM near his apartment in the Shumen microdistrict. The death of the 38-year-old blogger was confirmed by his friends.

Posted by: S | Apr 20 2022 16:07 utc | 365

Captured documents show desertion rate

In that unit up until March 31 there were 23 desertions from a start of 311 soldiers. Elite unit in Mariupol. It’s one battalion, there could be all sorts of special circumstances, it could be propaganda. If true and in any way reflective of the rest of the army - no army could long withstand that.

Posted by: oldhippie | Apr 20 2022 16:07 utc | 366

There is, at the centre of today's geopolitical universe, a massive black hole. A black hole that is very powerful. So powerful in fact that it can prevent any information from escaping its control and reaching the unwashed masses.

In some ways that geopolitical black hole is strikingly similar to its cosmological equivalent.

It cannot be identified directly. By definition. It can only be identified indirectly, by means of isolating the black hole's effects on other objects/players. The "wobble" in their orbits.

Where to find such effects on other objects/players?

I suggest you start by looking at phenomena which are influential, yet inexplicable.

Like the Institute for War and the entire Kagan clan.

Like Sir Jimmy Savile.

These are the "wobbles" that set astrophysicists' hearts a'flutter.

Posted by: John Cleary | Apr 20 2022 16:11 utc | 367

Posted by: John Kirsch | Apr 20 2022 13:35 utc | 334

I can't think of a war with so much coverage, as a matter of fact too much, depressing scenes to tell you the truth. Sad to see the destruction brought about by a declining empire that refuses to accept the new reality. I'm sorry for the Ukrainian people, they do not deserve their tragic destiny, cannon fodder for the soulless degenerates self appointed masters of the whole planet. Russia is paying a price too, but they were left with no choice after too many years of patience. For Europe I have no words, revolting to watch the servants of empire, Germany deserves a very special place in hell, after so many hard lessons they are at it again, this time hiding behind the big guy, but trying the same old trick.

Here you have a few sites, CNN and the Bagdad bombing feel like centuries ago.

Posted by: Paco | Apr 20 2022 16:15 utc | 368

Norwegian (345)

Neither am I, pity that.

Posted by: Republicofscotland | Apr 20 2022 16:16 utc | 369

I'm curious to see the propagandists next moves when the cauldron is surrounded and eliminated in the East and the coast fully taken and than a massive force moves to threaten an actual siege on Kiev, how can they continue the lies I'm seeing on the US MSM at that point? This war following Syria is probably the biggest inversion or split in reality I've seen the US mindset that is controlled by what ever the MSM says in my lifetime, 90 percent of the US population has a completely false idea of what is going on in both situations. There are some interesting similarities too, I wonder if anyone has written on the this. The arming and coddling of Jihadi extremists trying to set up a fantasy midevil caliphate and neo-Nazis attempting to set up a fantasy WW2 era Nazi homeland, both portrayed as brave freedom fighters, both wars aimed at Russia, both dominated in the US by a steady regime of pure fiction.

Posted by: james c | Apr 20 2022 16:20 utc | 370

While not specifically about the Ukraine, this Global Times editorial addresses what it calls the "weaponization of multinational US Corporation":

In the context of Washington's increasing emphasis on competition and confrontation, although some multinational corporations are trying hard to avoid "choosing sides" in the great power game, they have been regarded by Washington as an ideal tool to achieve geopolitical goals. founder Jeff Bezos once said blatantly, "If big tech companies are going to turn their back on US Department of Defense, this country is going to be in trouble." A typical example is that the rules of social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook always serve as a helping hand to adding fuel to the domestic political turmoil in "non-democratic" countries, and are even inextricably linked with "color revolutions."

Multinational corporations of the US and the West have, actively or not, been involved in the Russia-Ukraine conflict with unprecedented scale and depth. The US troops haven't been deployed in Ukraine, but Washington is behaving like an octopus, waving its tentacles to exert all-around influence on the war. From supplying weapons to sharing intelligence, and long economic sanction front, in addition to information warfare and a psychological offensive to sway public opinion, multinational corporations have played an important role. In this big geopolitical duel that the US is instigating by mobilizing all available resources and using all available means, Western multinational corporations have been tied by Washington to the co-pilot position of its chariot to divide the world. [My Emphasis]

As I read the editorial, I was reminded of David Korten's trilogy, When Corporations Rule the World, as well as what defines Fascism and the behaviors we've witnessed since 2008, particularly the 2016 election cycle in the Outlaw US Empire and the events that followed. And then there's the WEF's attempt to enforce a Global Reset along with the increasing suspicion that the coronavirus pandemic was caused by a germ warfare attack on China, although the science doesn't support that conclusion given the evidence of the virus's presence elsewhere in the world well prior to January 2019--although it's possible such "muddling" was part of the plan.

And there's something else I see happening and that's the growing differences in Eastern/Asian versus Western corporate behavior--the former are acting as agents of change while the latter are acting as impediments to change.

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 20 2022 16:21 utc | 371

Scorpion | Apr 20 2022 14:12 utc | 342

„There is cause for optimism but I think the Eurasian civilization would be a much better bet if Europe was a part of it and not apart from it.“

I am afraid I have to disappoint you. Paul Greenwood on #352 gave you a correct answer also.

The first argument is, that with the destruction of Nord Stream 2 over so many years there was not one big company in germany that spoke out loud against this US-attack. It took weeks after the end of the pipeline until Birnbaum from EON or Brudermüller from BASF went public and said that without russian gas Germany economy will be destroyed.

These „CEOs“ love it to join the munic warmongering conference and crawl into the ass of the atlanticists, like SIEMENS’ Kaeser. The global terror of the Empire is for them the absolute SINE QUA NON of their business, so that they accept even billions of losses of ordered.

The second argument is racism against the Untermensch Russians, which after 2.24 is set free again as if it has waited for this moment for decades.

I agree there will soon be the moment when the failures of Scholz „RUSSLAND DARF NICHT GEWINNEN!“ becomes obvious. But Germany won’t be the first to think over the NATOSTAAN shit. They will be the last.

So I wonder why you think an eurasian continent without these european idiots might become a distopia?

Posted by: njet | Apr 20 2022 16:30 utc | 372

@ juliania | Apr 20 2022 15:34 utc | 354 / 362

that sounded like fun! and i agree with what you say - these are the people to listen to! thanks juliania.. broad beans are happening here and garlic looks great.. onions are doing well and peas are up! the vancouver island gardening chronicles, lol...

Posted by: james | Apr 20 2022 16:42 utc | 374

Timely reminder for Boris & Co.

Putin test fires "Satin 2" ICBM and warns West to think twice, if it has any silly ideas of threatening Russia's Security.

Posted by: Kim | Apr 20 2022 16:54 utc | 375

And when Ukrainian resistance collapses it will collapse all at once. You can almost smell the fear and desperation of this in the west. There won’t be an embargo of Russian oil. That’s the dumbest idea in the world and it’s likely French politics more than reality. It will be like the sanctions, a lot of talk with more carve outs and exceptions. The US is reduced to empty threats. But at the same time the US cannot lose here. It’s a prestige issue. Ruling the globe by fear only works if you can instill fear. Every day Russia erodes that fear.

Do not do not DO NOT underestimate the Ukrainians' determination to fight to the death. They are brave, and completely radicalized by an ideology they're willing to sacrifice their lives for. Dismissing them as weak and cowardly is not helpful.

Posted by: Ian Kummer | Apr 20 2022 17:02 utc | 376

@Paul Spencer | Apr 20 2022 15:54 utc | 360

Yes, that is a wink-and-a-nod to the 43rd President of the USA. I've always wondered that this hole in the record was never attributed to his doing 'off the books' sorts of things. (Another wink-and-nod.) By the time he went into playing with planes he was already a Skull-and-Bonesman.

The USA lost most a census worth of records (1890) to a fire in 1921. With the USA and much of the West reliable on electronic records, I believe that the world is more vulnerable to a loss of records due to some calamity and not less vulnerable. Electronic storage is inexpensive, but sadly, not reliable and I suspect that there will be many more "warehouse fires" in all our futures. I do not look forward to it.

Posted by: Ursula Zandt | Apr 20 2022 17:05 utc | 377

Sorry for OT, but thought it important news.

LONDON, April 20. /TASS/. London's Westminster Magistrates' Court has issued an order for the extradition of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange to the United States, Chief Magistrate Paul Goldspring announced at a brief hearing on Wednesday.

British Home Secretary Priti Patel will now handle the extradition case against Assange, who faces 175 years in prison in the US on charges of leaking classified information. Even if the home secretary grants Assange’s extradition, his defense team will still have an opportunity to file an appeal with the High Court.

"I am duty bound to send your case to the Secretary of State for a decision on whether or not you should be extradited," the judge told Assange who watched the hearing via video link from Belmarsh Prison. "Having sent your case to the Secretary of State, you have the right to appeal to the High Court. If you exercise your right to appeal, it won’t be heard until the Secretary of State has made her decision under the Act," he added.

It's now in Boris Bozo's court.

Posted by: Circe | Apr 20 2022 17:06 utc | 378

It's funny that the comment number goes up after refreshing the page, this keeps happening.

For example, 371 was the last comment on the page, then after refreshing the page it became 372 or even 373, how come?

I can understand the number goes down when b deletes comments, but why would it go up

Posted by: ETA | Apr 20 2022 17:06 utc | 379

The Veterans Administration records fire is completely fake BS. What they rely on is that vets denied a claim are still soldiers and still taking orders. Privates do not question stories officers tell them. Any vet who makes the huge step of putting an attorney on the case finds out immediately there was no damn fire.

Do not give this fraud life by repeating it.

Posted by: oldhippie | Apr 20 2022 17:14 utc | 380

Posted by: Ursula Zandt | Apr 20 2022 17:05 utc | 378

it was attributed to him doing coke and not showing up for work, so "off the books" in that sense.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Apr 20 2022 17:18 utc | 381

Posted by: james | Apr 20 2022 16:42 utc | 375

Good to hear that good weather has arrived in Lotus Island. Check out this drum player, he does his tricks standing up. This is the soviet rock band that became a legend during the perestroika years, and after, the leader Tsoy the last hero as one of his albums title ended up like all great rock stars, dead at a young age. This clip is play back but I chose it because the live recordings do not have any quality. Enjoy Victor Tsoy and the group Kino. And yes, check out the drum player.

Posted by: Paco | Apr 20 2022 17:25 utc | 382

Is there any way we can persuade Lavrov and Putin to exchange Assange for some of those Troglodytes stuck in the Avostahl tunnels?. Too provocative for Russia maybe. Would it only feed the Wikileaks is a Russian agency BS. I just had to think out loud. This man has been trough so much already.

Somehow I feel the "allies" would rather their acolytes in Mariopul were rather dead already and would not be interested in a trade.

Posted by: DaVinci | Apr 20 2022 17:29 utc | 383

Again, apologies for not reading all the serious and pertinent comments. How did this thread get so long, so quickly?

Posted by: vinnieoh | Apr 20 2022 14:03 utc | 339

I've read every last blesséd comment in this thread -- even encountering an occasional non-serious or non-pertinent post (such as this one). And boy are my eyes tired.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | Apr 20 2022 17:35 utc | 384

384 - The British authorities seem embarrassed by those two Brits captured in Mariupol. The Russians also showed off the passport of a dead American "mercenary" from the same place but that story seems to have disappeared, perhaps because a dead guy is not going to make a TV appearance.

Posted by: Waldorf | Apr 20 2022 17:45 utc | 385

karlof1 @370

Talking about a germ warfare attack on China, we all know there are some serious covid breakouts in China in a scale that we haven't seen since the initial Wuhan breakout two years ago.

Then I saw some reports from China that Chinese Custom has recently found quite some "funny contents" in some international packages sent into China:

- Chinese Custom in Chengdu recently found 8 saliva swabs without being sealed in foil packages sent in from South Korea to a bio test company in China ;

(We all know that America has bio-labs in S. Korea and used to sent out live anthrax sample per postal FedEx service to the Osan Air Base in Pyeongtaek, about 70 km south of the capital Seoul, in 2015.)

- Inspectors in Shenyang, a city in North East of China, took samples of the inside and outside of the packages of cherry tomatos, and all samples turn out covid positive. 11 people who came into contacts with these "polluted" package in the market are now covid positive.

(This is not the first time China found out the covid postive samples on the package of imported food, sometimes in the imported food itself: ice cream imported from Ukraine were tested covid positive end of last year, IIRC.)

- Just before Winter Olympics begin in Feb. 4th, a dozen of covid cases broke out in Beijing, which was traced back to the patient zero, who had received a FedEx letter from Canada, the airway bill was fully saturated with covid.

All these "strange things" make China keep on alert and insist on "dynamic zero covid" strategy.

Posted by: lulu | Apr 20 2022 17:46 utc | 386

Posted by: John Kirsch | Apr 20 2022 13:35 utc | 334

---For Europe I have no words, revolting to watch the servants of empire, Germany deserves a very special place in hell, after so many hard lessons they are at it again, this time hiding behind the big guy, but trying the same old trick.

I'm not sure if you mean the German government, the general population or both. I'm quite ashamed of my countrymen myself. However...the propagande here in Germany is completely deafening. While in 2014 there was a loud outcry over the propaganda in German media regarding Ukraine (an outcry which I would never have expected, back then), in 2022 anybody who remotely takes any other standpoint than that of the Ukrainian government is immediately treated like he's drinking the blood of babies. Even showing the letter "Z" in public is now prosecuted.

In addition it feels like the Ukrainian ambassador Melnyk has taken over the role of Grand inquisitor. He treats German politicians like his lowly minions and the media love him for it.
I sometimes wonder how it is in other countries - because in Germany not a day goes by without complains from Ukraine or the media that Germany isn't delivering enough weapons or isn't outright commiting economic suicide because of Ukraine. I wonder whether other countries are under the same pressure - and if not, why Germany of all things. I don't like Scholz very much and I didn't vote for his party or any of the parties currently in the parliament, but I'm actually a bit impressed at the moment how he can resist the pressure from all sides.

I think the real problem is on the one hand the strong 'transatlantic' connections of almost all German media as well as especially that of the Green party. And on the other hand it's the intense psychological guilt complex of the German population. Using this, it was already possible to convince people to consent bombing Serbia in 1999. Back then the German minister of foreign relations Fischer argued that we would be obliged to prevent another "Auschwitz" and therefore must take part in the attack on Serbia. If you play that card...Germans will follow, especially those in the western part. They are so desperately trying to get away from their self image as the "ugly German" that they will grasp for any oportunity to be "the good guys" for once.

Funny thing is that the Austrian author Franz Werfel already forsaw this development in 1944/45 when he was writing his novel "Stern der Ungeborenen" (Star of the Unborn).
He writes:
"Between World War Two and Three, the Germans pushed themselves to the forefront of humanitarianism and all-goodness. The use of the word 'humanitarianism' cost forty-eight hours of arrest or a correspondingly large sum of money. Most of the Germans also took what they understood by humanity and goodness extremely seriously. After all, they had longed to be popular for centuries. Humanity and kindness now seemed to them the best way to achieve this goal. They even found it far more convenient than heroism and racial doctrine. [...] They were the inventors of the ungrateful ethic of 'selfless importunity.' For recreation, the educated among the Heinzelmännchen gave philosophical lectures at folk high schools, in Protestant churches, and even in Reform synagogues, their monotonous theme always being devoted to man's brotherly duty. Without duty it was not possible, as the basic German conception of life consisted in the 'worship of the unpleasant'. They were, in a word, real sheep in sheep's clothing. But since they were even this convulsively, nobody believed them, and they were thought to be wolves."

Remind you again that these words were written while WW2 was still on....

(Please note that I will not be able to write another posting today; So any possible reply will have to wait for an answer until tomorrow)

Posted by: Helmuth von Moltke | Apr 20 2022 17:49 utc | 387

Sushi | Apr 20 2022 16:04 utc | 363

I can't disagree with any of your speculations. I lived through the oil embargo of the 70's. Was also in the US Army '72-'75 and saw the military burning their monthly fuel allotments so that their share would not be reduced in the next disbursement. I could go on a rant here that would consume this entire thread, but what would be the point? So many coups, regime change operations, etc., but no-one talks about the most consequential one of all, the coup against the constitutional republic of the US that happened many decades ago. Eisenhower tried to tell us about it as he was leaving office.

The US could have been truly exceptional. With the collapse of the Soviet Union there was an opportunity afforded to humanity that seldom if ever is presented - the opportunity for global peace, co-operation, and progress. But GHW Bush near the end of his term and in front of a friendly audience (sorry, I can't cite the occasion) stated: "There will be NO peace dividend!" I've nurtured a suspicion for many years that the reason our ghouls and crazies keep doubling down and doubling down on the death and destruction, the subjugation and exploitation, is that they truly believe that payback is going to be a bitch. To their mindset, that is the only logical conclusion.

Now to rescue this comment to some form of being on topic: On Feb. 25th or 26th I posted something to the effect that the Russians had come to the somber conclusion that they must act now or die a slow death of a thousand cuts. The opening salvo in the parade of lies by Biden, et. al. is that Russia's actions were "Unprovoked and unjustified." They were most certainly and unquestionably provoked. As for justified, imo that will depend on how successful Russia/RF is in accomplishing its goals in the immediate context of Ukraine. The rest, which we've been discussing here, is still too murky to see, though your suggestions seem well-founded. As tragic, deadly, and destructive as it must ultimately be, it is now time for Russia to throw of some of the restraint it has shown, and finish decisively what it was forced to start (or perhaps more truly - finish?). As someone who does care deeply for all of humanity, it is a great sorrow to write/say that.

It is ironic that (imo) Russia really did not want this conflict, and the ones that truly did are poised to lose the most.

Posted by: vinnieoh | Apr 20 2022 17:59 utc | 388

Lyrics for the 21st century:

When the sensor sees a blip,
algos churn and then let it rip.
And the sensor saw a blip.

Soon the missiles are in flight,
you sit still, wait for the light.
And the missils are in flight.

When the nukes come tumbling in,
you can see through living things.
And the nukes come tumbling in.

Now a sun shines with a flash,
things around you turns to ash.
And a sun shines with a flash.

Now a sphere appears and grows,
what will happen, no one knows.
And the sphere just grows and grows.

As the shockfront closes in,
you feel nauseous, chances slim.
And the shockfront closes in.

Since the sensor saw a blip,
algos churned and let it rip.
The explosions roaring loud,
you are now a vapor cloud.

Not quite ready for poet laureate, but it's a start.

Posted by: bottle | Apr 20 2022 18:04 utc | 389

US says it's sending aircrafts. America is joining the fighting against Russia in Ukraine.

Check out Flying Tiger in China during WWII. It was officially called The First American Volunteer Group (AVG), but in fact were mercenaries who were richly paid (four or five times than they could ever earn in US as airforce pilot.)

US/EU/IMF are sending billions of $$$, which should be more than enough to entice ex and active US military pilots to risk their lives to "stand up with Ukraine" and to fight the "evil" Russia.

Posted by: lulu | Apr 20 2022 18:05 utc | 390

Helmuth von Moltke @388

Great insightful post regarding German and Germany! How sharp-minded this Austrian author was! Thanks for introducing me to know Franz Werfel!

The strong 'transatlantic' connections makes almost every German politician a lap dog of US! Especially the Green Party! The Annalena Baerbock basically acts as American agent to the max. Just look how willingly they'd sacrifice everything in Germany and screw up average German to satisfy their US master!

Posted by: lulu | Apr 20 2022 18:25 utc | 391

Posted by: DaVinci | Apr 20 2022 17:29 utc | 384

Great idea.
Exchange British officials against Assange!
Come on Putin, Lawrow!

Posted by: njet | Apr 20 2022 19:15 utc | 392

Udo Ulfkotte's book surely explains the behavior of German media. And of other Western media, for that matter.

Posted by: Lysias | Apr 20 2022 19:24 utc | 393

Posted by: Helmuth von Moltke | Apr 20 2022 17:49 utc | 388

"the propagande here in Germany is completely deafening"

Just as much as it is here in Spain, we share something besides membership in the EU, we are both occupied countries, and our media in occupied and bought by $$$.

Germans want to ameliorate their image?, very simple, promote your musicians like Friedrich Abel, that will do it a lot better than bimbo Baerbock sucking up to the yanks.

Posted by: Paco | Apr 20 2022 19:32 utc | 394

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | Apr 20 2022 15:20 utc | 354
Posted by: njet | Apr 20 2022 16:30 utc | 373

"Germany is now a has-been both geopolitically and industrially. China will replace Germany and dispense with its exports to China."

I have no inclination to argue against any of yr points, PG, which were well made and make great sense. Nevertheless, I come back one time! As I mentioned somewhere Europe is going to have to be on the receiving end of some (very) tough love for a while. That while could be a couple of generations or more.

But what if (and of course this is pure speculation) somehow the EU-NATU-US alliance fractures along with much of the ruling class hold on those countries as a result of the world wide asymmetric war we are currently in Year 3 of? Can the old ties of Russia and Germany from Catherine the Great's time be rekindled? Can some of the bedrock European/Christian/Enlightenment ethos and sense of community return? I believe so. One of the earliest videos ever made was that of Tsar Nicolas' coronation (or wedding?). The assembled population arrayed according to class was as quintessentially European and expression as any I've seen, as were all the costumes worn. They were peacefully standing together evidencing great discipline, mutual respect, devotion and all sharing a sense of sacred perception. Those who murdered that whole society a few years later cannot stand that sort of good-hearted decency and solidarity yet there it clearly was. It shines out of the grainy old black and white silent footage. Powerful messaging from the deep past.

I believe such connections are both far deeper and also much more plastic, i.e. malleable and changeable, than we tend to acknowledge. Emotions are fluid and fast-changing as well as powerful, like fire and water.

One of the great problems we have right now in our 'Empire of Lies' is that as a culture we have lost both our souls and hearts and are wandering ghosts in societal wastelands. This is the result of deliberate fifth column subterfuge going back generations. This war will hopefully knock the stuffing out of the wicked ruling classes of the West and perhaps allow us all a psychological and spiritual reset. Perhaps.

We the people are going to have to play our part by NOT buying into any BS victor's or other's narratives (as happened after WW II and which is still causing serious fractures today) and also standing up for something, for proper values, for honor, courage, decency and so forth.

But of course nothing is guaranteed.

It IS interesting, though, how Britain did Brexit making the whole Oceanic Empire (US, Canada, NA, Australia, Japan, UK, making a play for Indian subcontinent but seemingly now failing) far clearer in contrast to the Great Eurasian Island between Lisbon and Shanghai. So for a while let's break things up and separate but afterwards I think both Russia and the world would benefit from the contributions of a revived, if also chastened, Europe. They absolutely HAVE to get rid of that ghastly EU boondoggle of over-centralization course and return to more eclectic nation by nation diplomacy and decision-making.

Another reason for favoring Germany is that they are indeed an industrial powerhouse and so can help ensure there is a flow from West to East as well as East to West whilst also being a major gateway to and from Western Europe to the Far East. And they have long-standing deep connections in both China and Japan who also needs to come on board the new multipolar train.

Personally, am not persuaded by all the hate stuff. I think most of this is media and Intelligence generated BS by the usual You Know Who's a sort of ongoing atrocity propaganda equivalent. People never really hate each other all that much unless they are manipulated into it. Life's too short and too difficult for most of us to be bothered with such clearly ridiculous stuff.

Posted by: Scorpion | Apr 20 2022 19:35 utc | 395

Posted by: Helmuth von Moltke | Apr 20 2022 17:49 utc | 388

"I wonder whether other countries are under the same pressure - and if not, why Germany of all things."

More than any other country in the world, Germany is under the control of 'Zionists' because of the guilt manipulation you mention later. And of course UK and US are almost vassals of this sort of thing as well. Germany still doesn't have a fully independent constitution.

It is time for Germany to declare independence, fashion its own constitution, expel all foreign military, refuse any further reparation demands and if they are made then counterclaim for the huge body of lies that most such claims depend upon (quite apart from whether or not the main narrative is true or false it is indisputably true that many of the stories and individual claims are pure bunkum and it's time to put a stop to it already).

Germany needs to break from Europe now viz the gas business. Stop sending weapons to Ukraine who have been training Nazis of all things.

Germany won't do this of course but she should. Germany needs a free press, a new constitution and a properly woken up population. It's high time. They are an old, great culture and people who could give much more to the world if they only got out from under the Anglozionist domination that has gone on far too long. Basically, they never recovered from the treachery of the Allied blockade and national starvation imposed illegally and immorally after the armistice in 1918 at a point where many argue Germany was more winning than losing although neither side could really vanquish the other completely, one of the most blatantly perfidious mass murder crimes in world history. Germany should denounce all dealings with such 'allies' and chart her own course finally.

Just do it!!

All best
(someone with a son and two grandchildren living in D-land!)

Posted by: Scorpion | Apr 20 2022 19:45 utc | 396

oldhippie @381-
Hey, old buddy, I don't actually care what happened, as I don't need - probably don't want - VA benefits. I'm just reporting the theory that the sergeant behind the counter offered as to why he couldn't find my records.

Posted by: Paul Spencer | Apr 20 2022 20:12 utc | 397

K #288

Thank you, well said.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | Apr 20 2022 20:14 utc | 398

As for the fate of Germany, I could imagine Russia at some point in the future driving 40 million Poles into Germany, the same way both Poles and Germans were expelled westward by Stalin. Given the historical hatred between Poles and Germans, and the hatred of both peoples against Russians which has now again surfaced, this would have an exquisite irony and would be an appropriate punishment for them. Trapped together in the already cramped Germany, they would have to fight each other over very limited resources. They would rip each other to shreds.

Posted by: Unnamed | Apr 20 2022 20:33 utc | 399

There's something else I see happening and that's the growing differences in Eastern/Asian versus Western corporate behavior--the former are acting as agents of change while the latter are acting as impediments to change.

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 20 2022 16:21 utc | 372

Admittedly this is only from casual reading, but China appears to me to be playing the same national debt-slavery game as the IMF and World Bank have for decades.

And anyone who believes in the smiling peaceful benignity of the CCP should study their "social credit" system, which is a perfect instrument of arbitrary oppression, opaque and including "discredit by association."

Posted by: John Kennard | Apr 20 2022 20:44 utc | 400

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