Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
May 22, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-71

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

The open thread for other issues is here.

Posted by b on May 22, 2022 at 11:58 UTC | Permalink

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Posted by: K | May 23 2022 7:37 utc | 308

That is precisely what he said in his Energy Intelligence article. Is he now reversing himself again? Or is he spreading different stories to different venues?

I suppose I'll have to watch this.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 23 2022 7:45 utc | 301

Has anyone heard anything about the fate of the reported NATO personnel in Avostal - particularly senior officers? Alexander Mercouris, who is usually a shrewd commentator seems to think these "rumours" have turned out false. https://odysee.com/@AlexanderMercouris:a/russia-says-luhansk-under-full-control-2:6. On this occasion I think he's wrong. I can't think of another credible explanation for whay such desperate attempts were made to evacuate personnel before the faciility was captured. Mercouris's suggestion that these suicidal helicopter sorties were to keep up morale, is frankly silly. The fact that the Russians have kept quiet proves nothing. It may well be that they want to use these people as bargaining chips - once they've been interrogated - to get back their own prisoners of war. This may trump any propaganda value of trumpeting their capture. It's clear that neither Zelenski nor his oligrach backers nor the Anglo-Americans apparently giving him his orders, care much about the Ukrainian cannon fodder they are sending to be slaughtered.

Posted by: ManintheMoon | May 23 2022 8:29 utc | 302

Watching Medhurst's interview with Ritter - 18 minutes.

Yes, Ritter is saying the same bullshit he said in his Energy Intelligence article.

Basically he's saying that Russia hasn't accomplished its "political objectives", therefore Russia is losing by not winning.

Bullshit. I'm writing down his exact words and paraphrases and I will try to cover them in Monday's thread. It appears to me that he's either been compromised or he just is incapable of comprehending what Martyanov and others have said about the way Russia does war.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 23 2022 8:38 utc | 303

Posted by: ManintheMoon | May 23 2022 8:29 utc | 312

Until the Russian MoD says something, no one knows nothing. We just have to wait. I agree Mercouris may be premature, but he's right about some things. There is zero evidence of any biolabs in the steel plant. However, Russian investigators and forensics people will be combing through that. No one will know anything until an official report is made.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 23 2022 8:39 utc | 304

And thank you, lex
for the link.
I like their sound.

Posted by: Cadence calls | May 23 2022 8:45 utc | 305

Many thanks to b, and all the regulars here at the bar.
I learn more here in an hour than any semester at a uni.
I’d love to sit with the lot of you and have a round or two.
You guys and girls can be ornery at times,
But you’ve never kicked me out of the bar, yet.
We all have our paths, and no hard feelings.
Cheers, and best wishes to you all.

Posted by: Cadence Calls | May 23 2022 8:53 utc | 306

Regarding the azovstal sorties, isn't it possible that they were for the Azov commander? I remember hearing an assertion made by someone on youtube that the ambassador from Ukraine to Germany visiting the grave of Bandera was a sign of the pull that the nazi's had in Ukraine. His premise was that the position was one of such importance that it could only be awarded to someone with signifant political backing.

Perhaps the "top secret" appointment of Yarosh to the advisory of the Ukrainian army, coupled with these little bits of chaff, illuminate the actual power that is wielded within the country by the Banderites?

Posted by: eyeswideopen | May 23 2022 8:58 utc | 307

@286 James

I dig Nomeansno! "Wrong" is a fine album, I like their "Why Do They Call Me Mr. Happy?" album a lot, too.

Cats, Sex and Nazis (why do they call me Mr. Happy?)

https://youtu.be/xbNthA7Uplc

Posted by: Haassaan | May 23 2022 9:02 utc | 308

Finished listening to the Medhurst interview with Ritter. I skimmed a lot of it because it was the same-old, same-old discussion of NATO expansion, the economic consequences of the sanctions, etc. Absolutely nothing new. The main section of interest was the start where he issued his assessment of where we are now.

And it's the same crap I and others have demolished repeatedly over the past week. I'll go through it in detail in the next thread.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 23 2022 9:03 utc | 309

rk | May 23 2022 7:04 utc | 301

"Sputnik - According to the WSJ, special forces units will have to guard the newly opened American embassy.
"President Biden has not yet been presented with this proposal. But if he approves it, the troops will be deployed only to protect and secure the embassy, which is within range of Russian missiles."

How are "special forces" supposed to protect the US whorehouse from missile attack?

Well, maybe we should understand "special" in the sense of "retarded". Though I wonder how impeccably woke and "diverse" they'll be, if the US is anxious to make the ukronazis feel at ease.

Such strategic matters for the empire to contemplate...

Posted by: Flying Dutchman | May 23 2022 9:11 utc | 310

ManintheMoon | May 23 2022 8:29 utc | 312

"Has anyone heard anything about the fate of the reported NATO personnel in Avostal..."

If the bunker really is emptied then they must be dead or in captivity. I can picture how the Russians might keep their capture secret in order to keep the empire in a state of stressful suspense about their fate, but I can't imagine why the empire wouldn't simply produce them, if they were safe and sound. The latter would be a morale boost and another exposing of so-called Russian lies. So the fact that no one can produce these persons is great circumstantial evidence that the Russians have them, or that they're dead. (Which I suppose the imperial leadership is hoping is the case.)

Posted by: Flying Dutchman | May 23 2022 9:18 utc | 311

"So the fact that no one can produce these persons is great circumstantial evidence that the Russians have them, or that they're dead. (Which I suppose the imperial leadership is hoping is the case.)

Posted by: Flying Dutchman | May 23 2022 9:18 utc | 311".

I think you are spot on. The only effort to debunk the reported capture of General Cloutier many weeks ago, who commands US troops in Turkey, was a pretty weak attempt to post a photo of him addressing some conference about a week later. Since then nothing. The ruling western regimes must be very worried about all the beans he and his colleagues are going to spill. I like your idea that saying nothing will stress them even more about what is going on.

Posted by: ManintheMoon | May 23 2022 9:41 utc | 312

Dadda | May 23 2022 0:29 utc | 210

> The yanks already invaded Panama. And Grenada.

That's why. Next time it happens you can applaud them on. Regional spheres of interests and so on.

Posted by: Trotzki | May 23 2022 9:54 utc | 313

@310
Only WSJ knows how. It's not like they'll be allowed to put a military base in Kiev and install Patriot or whatever crap they have. It's propaganda but they're testing how the others react.

Posted by: rk | May 23 2022 10:03 utc | 314

307.
I don't see the Kiev regime having any interest in extracting the Avostal commanders. In fact I suspect they'd find it very convenient if they were all killed. This brings up the little discussed unholy alliance between the largely Jewish politial and financial leadership of the country and the out and out Nazis who keep them in power. My feeling is that each side feels they can use the other and then dispose of them at a later stage. It would stretch all credibility to believe there's any loyalty between one group and the other. Now the war has clearly been lost, Zelinski and his backers are probably looking to extract as much loot as they can from the ruins of the country and the billions being thrown at them by the West, while trying to avoid being killed if the Nazis protecting them, get the idea they've been shafted.

Posted by: ManintheMoon | May 23 2022 10:04 utc | 315

Flying Dutchman @310:
The "special forces" will be to extract Zelensky safely when it all collapses so he can be jetted away to enjoy his laundered riches in the Americas. They may also be necessary to extract any NATO officers still floating around in the area if their discovery/capture would be an embarrassment.

Posted by: Donnie | May 23 2022 11:01 utc | 316

Posted by: ManintheMoon | May 23 2022 10:04 utc | 315

I agree that it is probable that the utility of the Azov to the Jewish faction of the Kiev regime was greatly lessened when it became clear that they were done for. If there are/were no bigwigs at azovstal, then who else could they have been trying to get out?

As for Zelensky, until the facts on the ground overwhelm the narrative, his role as the avatar of the resistance, coupled with his refusal to cede to any Russian demands satisfies both the nazis and his puppeteers. His immediate health is probably mostly assured since it seems the Russians are also content to keep him right where he is.

This Jewish-Banderite alliance is hardly ever mentioned even in the alternative sources. The rebuttals of the "but Zelensky is Jewish" meme tend to focus on the statement itself and almost no mention is made of the actual mechanics of this alliance. Is the military in thrall to the Banderites as well? Is it a triumvirate with the addition of the US into the mix and are there any likely tensions that could cause an imminent break etc. All I hear is "Zelensy" is a puppet ad nauseam.

Posted by: eyeswideopen | May 23 2022 11:09 utc | 317

Donnie | May 23 2022 11:01 utc | 316

The "special forces" will be to extract Zelensky safely when it all collapses so he can be jetted away to enjoy his laundered riches in the Americas. They may also be necessary to extract any NATO officers still floating around in the area if their discovery/capture would be an embarrassment.

That's a lot to expect from "special" forces in these circumstances. As for Zelensky, people keep talking about a Florida mansion all set and waiting for him but I find it hard to believe he'll ever get there. From the empire's point of view he'd be completely worthless if not as a figurehead allegedly on the spot in Kiev or Lvov. And if I were a Ukronazi leader I'd be leery of letting the US decide if and when to extract him. I'd want to keep him under our control there in the Ukraine, and kill him sooner than let the US hold him for who knows what future purpose which may not include us.

Posted by: Flying Dutchman | May 23 2022 11:14 utc | 318

Forgot the quote marks for the first paragraph in my 318 comment.

Posted by: Flying Dutchman | May 23 2022 11:17 utc | 319

Posted by: Trotzki | May 23 2022 9:54 utc

You talk nothing but spheres...

Posted by: Some Random Passerby | May 23 2022 12:27 utc | 320

Austen: if you guys reveal the bio stuff in Azov Biden is open to being tried for treason which means we go nuclear. Deal?

Posted by: Scorpion | May 23 2022 12:37 utc | 321

NATO personnel from Azovstal

I agree with Flyingdutchman 311 that they may well be in custody. We should remind that Azov commanders were evacuated in a quite large armored vehicle -
Also the US-RF talks may well be related to those NATO personnel handling.
As a French, rather than US general/admiral, I’m interested by the 50 DGSE staff who supposedly triggered Macron’s repeated calls to Poutine

Posted by: Daniel | May 23 2022 12:49 utc | 322

Hey, I mean, I’m just trying to stir it up. What with the war not making headlines. I mean, what’s wrong with trying to up the grammar game?

Posted by: Cadence Calls | May 23 2022 4:05 utc | 264


And yet your mini-philippic about "I mean" has nothing to do with grammar.

Posted by: malenkov | May 23 2022 13:10 utc | 323

@sln2002 #107
If you are attempting to demonstrate either your point or credibility, I can't say that you are succeeding.

The majority of US debt is owed to Americans, but the minority percentage remaining is still a ginormous number.

But let's look at these wannabe Krugman-like rejoinders (Krugman is really only good at Twitter warfare):

You said:

Are you trying to compare US external debt as a % of GDP to other nations' external debt (denominated in USD)? If so, you can browse World Bank.

No, as I clearly noted: the US has insignificant foreign reserves compared to its external debt. Or its trade volume. Or pretty much any external facing number you care to name.

Foreign reserves for debtor countries is normally a significant issue.

%debt to GDP is irrelevant - what I talked about was foreign reserves.

You said:

Or are you trying to compare foreign exchange reserves (foreign account holders' assets -- cash + cash equivalents, eg. marketable securities any issuer) deposited with US Federal Reserve Banks (inc US charterd banks) to total foreign exchange reserves deposited with different central banks, eg. PBOC, ECB?

No, what I said, again, is that the US has insignificant foreign reserves vs. its foreign obligations because its debt is denominated in USD and the US can print more USD any time it wants.

You said:

IF so, you might browse Trading Economics chart pr0n, rather than canvass every central banks' QoQ reports since, say, the credit Panic of '08. yanno, just to be sure, what foreign "assets" the FRB cannot "freeze", the NYFed is buying from "primary dealers".

Again, another segue into irrelevancy.

Let me spell it out compactly so that you can understand:

1) The US has an enormous national debt.
2) The majority of this debt is owed to Americans, so dollars are fine.
3) The rest of the debt, some 25% of $30T = $7.5T+ (actually $7.6136 trillion as of March 2022) is held by foreigners
4) However, since this debt is denominated in dollars - i.e. are US Treasuries, the US doesn't need to hold foreign reserves because the US can print more dollars anytime desired to repay this debt.

I thought you had something of substance to offer - I was clearly wrong.

Posted by: c1ue | May 23 2022 13:43 utc | 324

@the pessimist #111
Short answer: no.

Russia's stated objectives are demilitarization and deNazification. Simply gaining de-facto control over all of Donetsk and Luhansk accomplishes neither of these goals.

This is all irrelevant, however. It seems clear Zelensky is willing to fight to the last (every other) Ukrainian, and as such the sausage grinder moves onward...

Posted by: c1ue | May 23 2022 13:45 utc | 325

@pretzelattack #130
regime change in Ukraine wouldn't necessarily motivate Ukrainians to die more, any more than regime changes in South Vietnam changed the course of that conflict.

As for the US' economic feudalism: what is so interesting is that this time around - it seems, at least right now, that it is Europe and Japan that are going to provide the economic grist for the US mill. UK, Australia, NZ, even SK are basically irrelevant.

I consider this notable because traditionally, it has been the 2nd and 3rd world that coughed up the weregild.

It would be highly ironic if Europe - which rebuilt with help from the US after World War 2 - suffers a re-de-industrialization due to its adherence to US foreign and economic policies.

As opposed to de-industrialization via US bombs in WW2.

Posted by: c1ue | May 23 2022 13:50 utc | 326

Japan is a weak choice for a US partner, but the US has little choice and neither does Japan, with 56,000 active duty US military plus dependents in-country.
from the web:
Everybody knows Japan is in crisis. The biggest problems it faces – sinking economy, aging society, sinking birthrate, radiation, unpopular and seemingly powerless government – present an overwhelming challenge and possibly an existential threat.//
Also, Japan is (rightfully) hated by Koreans and Chinese.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 23 2022 14:05 utc | 327

As for Zelensky, people keep talking about a Florida mansion all set and waiting for him but I find it hard to believe he'll ever get there. From the empire's point of view he'd be completely worthless if not as a figurehead allegedly on the spot in Kiev or Lvov. And if I were a Ukronazi leader I'd be leery of letting the US decide if and when to extract him. I'd want to keep him under our control there in the Ukraine, and kill him sooner than let the US hold him for who knows what future purpose which may not include us.

Posted by: Flying Dutchman | May 23 2022 11:14 utc | 318

Aw shucks! Even though haven't watched one in years had him pegged as a late night comedy show host or a CNN International Expert.

Posted by: Scorpion | May 23 2022 14:20 utc | 328

@ lex talionis | May 23 2022 5:28 utc | 283

thanks lex... never heard of that group youth brigade before! that is interesting what you say - "The NSBM (National Socialist Black Metal) thing is for real. Almost a recruiting tool. " and its cool you have a radio show too!

Posted by: james | May 23 2022 14:26 utc | 329

@ Haassaan | May 23 2022 9:02 utc | 308

they're a great band and still going so far as i know... they all live in vancouver.... at least they did last i heard...

Posted by: james | May 23 2022 14:28 utc | 330

Flying Dutchman @318: ” As for Zelensky, people keep talking about a Florida mansion all set and waiting for him but I find it hard to believe he'll ever get there. From the empire's point of view he'd be completely worthless if not as a figurehead allegedly on the spot in Kiev or Lvov.”

First of all, calling the digs the CIA/State Department sets up their used assholes assets in a ”mansion” is a bit of a stretch. Mar-a-Lago it is not. These houses for used asset storage are typically just regular Florida concrete block ranch style houses in housing developments with scores of other similar houses. We’re talking three bedrooms with a garage, probably a pool, and maybe a detached bungalow guest house. Nicer than what a local teacher could afford, no doubt, but certainly no mansion.

Second, some of these used assets need to be seen enjoying their rewards for service to the empire. Zelensky being so high profile might make him more of a liability, though, and that might make it better for the empire if he were to tragically perish in a dastardly Russian attack [wink, wink]. This is doubly so if the stories about Zelensky squirreling away a cool $billion are true. Many imperial oligarchs will be offended and consider that rightfully their wealth. How dare an obnoxious bit player scam his way into their club!

The point you raise about the Nazis is very problematic for Zelensky too. There is no way they will let him get out of their reach until they are done with him, and at that point they might be done with him, if you know what I mean. Who would question it if they said the Russians did it?

Doubtless Zelensky is aware of these dangers which is why I posit the scenario where the Russians offer security for him in exchange for surrender of the Ukraine. That would require a dicey operation, but it would end the war.

Posted by: William Gruff | May 23 2022 14:47 utc | 331

Give me some names post WWII
Posted by: circumspect | May 23 2022 1:49 utc | 232

Good morning, Mr Goal-Post! I surmise, you are not US American. So. Let's establish a couple facts: (1) ministerial position is not an intelligible, governmental function here; that term is reserved for da ecumenical ahem protestant estate. (2) The Art. II of the US Constitution vests diplomatic (treaties) and military (deployment) authorities exclusively in the office of the executive, who has broad (common law) discretion to create and remove "political appointments" beyond the purview of senate confirmation/impeachment and US civil law (USC) proscribing "competitive" qualifications of civil servants and establishing special purpose, limited-term executive functionaries ("directors," "administrators", "commissions"). Accordingly, the US Congress may or may not, ex post facto, enact legislation intended to circumscribe POTUS prerogatives in a manner to maximize profit potential of domestic enterprises, rather than respect the sovereignty of other nation-states. The names of individual agents is never so important as the modus operandi and the ends of subordinating international state legitimacy to US federal government. Nonetheless, I will illustrate a few post-WWII revolving US "ministerial positions" ...

current - US Overseas Territories "administration" by US Congress: Guam, Micronesia, Northern Mariana Islands, Micronesia , Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands (wikiwtf)

1900-1952 - "Commonwealth" of Puerto Rico, appointed government; first "organic" election 1948, constitution 1950; (2017 - see Jaresko below)

1945-1952 - Supreme Command of Allied Powers in three phases

current - US Dept of Interior, Ass. Sec, bureau of Indian Affairs

The Assistant Secretary discharges the duties of the Secretary with the authority and direct responsibility to: Strengthen the government-to-government/nation-to-nation relationship with American Indian and Alaska Native tribes; ... (history)
2003-2007 - Paul Bremer, US appointed Provisional Coalition Authority "administrator" of Iraq" (RAND) ; "Each ministry had a U.S. advisor.", discredited 2005 Transitional Nat'l Assembly election ("Mr Bremer says the US-led force occupying Iraq will leave as soon as a new democratic Iraqi government is established." Irish Times, usip.org); 104-acrre, fortified US Baghdad Embassy completed 2009: "Embassy Baghdad’s Political Section aims to advance U.S. goals with respect to Iraq’s internal political situation and its political relations with other countries, through its work with Iraqi central and local government" (globalsecurity.org); good read Imperial Life in the Emerald City (2007)

2014 - Natalie Jaresko appointed Ukraine finance minister; designated Executive Director of the Financial Oversight and Management Board for Puerto Rico on March 2017; Aspen Institute bio

Posted by: sln2002 | May 23 2022 15:18 utc | 332

Chaka Khagan 67 "...similar approach was used to foment the Maidan coup. You've got to drive wedges btw various groups - encourage existing prejudices, create divisions. exacerbate any tensions available. (Hutus vs Tutsis in Central Africa serves as a stark, familiar example). You've got to throw a lot of money around. By you, I mean the CIA..."

Thanks for bringing in apposite mention of the Rwanda project. Too many still believe this was some sort of autochthonous rivalry run amok, instead of a USA project to usurp French hegemony over the West Africa--East Africa land bridge. Union Buildings, Pretoria, May 1994: Who knows what quiet exchanges the fly on the wall (tree) overheard in the pauses during his inauguration, between Mandela and Mitterrand.

Posted by: petra | May 23 2022 15:27 utc | 333

William Gruff | May 23 2022 14:47 utc | 331

"Doubtless Zelensky is aware of these dangers which is why I posit the scenario where the Russians offer security for him in exchange for surrender of the Ukraine. That would require a dicey operation, but it would end the war."

I've thought that too, if Zelensky really wants to save his own life, his best bet is to secretly arrange for Russian special forces to grab him from his imperial/ukronazi captors.

Posted by: Flying Dutchman | May 23 2022 17:49 utc | 334

Someone has probably put this up, but I ran across it. Biden mocking Scott Ridder in 1998.

Bidet and Ridder 1998

What a mean "See you next Tuesday" Bidet is. During the Obama regime, the Russian media would ridicule Psaki by assigning a unit of stupidity to her name. I think we can now measure the exceptional stupidity of the psychos running the swamp show in bidens.

@ james - I'll figure out how to get in touch and I can play some of your stuff. You got some chops, yo!

@ cadence calls - I love Void Meditation Cult. On the mighty Hells Headbangers out of Ohio. Glad you like them. They are the soundtrack to my mind.

@ Haassaan - Thanks for the No Means No song. I can't believe I was asleep on them for all this time. That song will be on my next show. With a big shout out to all the MoA heads.

@ Scorpion - Were you on that call? I have a sick feeling you are right.

Posted by: lex talionis | May 23 2022 18:31 utc | 335

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