Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
May 02, 2022

Ukraine's Army Is In Very Bad Shape - More Fighting Will Only Destroy It

The French news agency AFP has published a report by Daphne Rousseau from near the Ukrainian frontline. It allows us to gain some realistic view of the state of the Ukrainian armed forces.

Exhausted Ukrainian soldiers return from eastern front

Here is a current map of the frontline. Kiev is in the upper left corner.


I will quote the AFP report piecemeal and add my observations:

Packed with exhausted Ukrainian soldiers with clenched jaws, the truck drives away at full speed. The troops from the 81st brigade have just received an order to withdraw from the eastern front where Russian forces advance.

The brigade walked 12 kilometres (7.5 miles) Saturday, camouflaged in the woods and under crossfire, until their point of retreat at Sviatoguirsk.

The 81st Airmobile Brigade consists of 3 infantry battalions equipped with BTR-70 armored personnel carriers that can be loaded onto a plane. It also has a strong artillery group with 3 gun and missile battalions, and the usual hodgepodge of support units.

As the Ukrainian troops had to walk 12 kilometers a question arises. Where are their armored carriers? Even when infantry is deployed in dugouts and trenches its transport should always be nearby (~3 km) to be able to quickly pick it up when necessary.

The most likely answer is that those BTR-70, as well as the brigade's artillery, no longer exist. From today's 'clobber list' as published by the Defense Ministry of Russia (emphasis added):

In total, 146 aircraft and 112 helicopters, 683 unmanned aerial vehicles, 281 anti-aircraft missile systems, 2,756 tanks and other armored combat vehicles, 316 multiple launch rocket systems, 1,234 field artillery and mortars, as well as 2,563 units of special military vehicles of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were destroyed during the operation.

Those numbers will be, like all such counts, somewhat exaggerated. But they do tell a story.

Sviatoguirsk, the extraction point for the troops, is some 10 kilometers southeast of Izium which the Russian forces have taken a while ago. 

More from the AFP piece:

For a month, the 81st -- whose motto is "always first" -- battled to push back the Russian advance in Ukraine's eastern Donbas region where Moscow's troops move forward slowly, taking villages one by one.

"Everyone understands that we must guard the line here, we cannot let the enemy move closer, we try to hold it with all our force," says lieutenant Yevgen Samoylov, anxious that the unit could be hit by Russian fire at any point.

"As you can hear, the enemy is very, very near," he says, pointing to the sky. The line of Russian tanks is on the other side of a hill, around seven kilometres (4.3 miles) away.

The troops walked 12 kilometers and are now on trucks. The enemy is currently 7 kilometers away. Simple math will explain that with a 5 kilometer deep gain by the Russian forces.

At 21 years old, Samoylov, an officer from the Odessa military academy, finds himself managing 130 conscripts, often twice his age.

"It's my first war. I was supposed to graduate in four months, but they sent me here," says the baby-faced officer with a short black beard.

What a disaster. 130 conscripts up to age 40+. These ain't well trained warriors but teachers and car mechanics or farmers drafted into the war. With 130 troops the unit has about the size of a company. Infantry companies in the Soviet/Russian/Ukrainian army are relatively big:

[T]he strength of a tank company is 31-40 people, and the number of servicemen of a motorized rifle company ranges from 150 people. Often a company is commanded by an officer with the rank of captain, and only in some units this position is occupied by a major.

The junior lieutenant Samoylov, who did not even finish his officer course, is leading a unit that is usually led by an officer two to three ranks higher than his. Where are the higher officers?

More from AFP:

The unit swung into action on February 23, a day before Russia launched the invasion.

At the start of the war, they spent a month defending Izium, which fell on April 1, before joining the fighting around the village of Oleksandrivka.

"Some really difficult battles," says the quiet Samoylov.

Izium is at the northern front where Russian force press towards the south. There are several Oleksandrivka (Alexandrovka) named settlements in the Ukraine, three of them in the Donetsk oblast. There may be more unofficial ones with that name. Two of the known ones are in the north west of Donetzk Oblast some 20 kilometer southwest and southeast of Izium respectively.

The map shows Izium in the north, the western Oleksandrivka is on the bottom left. The other Oleksandrivka lies on the west periphery of Kramatorsk city, to which it practically belongs. It is not named on the map.

Neither town is directly on the current frontline which runs about 10 kilometer to the north. Sviatoguirsk, the extraction point, is much nearer to the front. That is where the troops likely were before they walked towards the trucks.


The AFP piece continues:

In this brigade, like the others, they don't say how many people have been killed.

When the subject comes up, Samoylov's gaze becomes misty. The pain is raw.

A deadly silence takes over the military truck during the drive to the abandoned building where the soldiers will stay during their week of rest.

Samoylov's 130 men are unlikely to be from one original company. They are probably all what is left from a battalion that originally had three companies and more than 400 men.

When the convoy passes a truck loaded with long-range missiles dashing to the front, the soldiers automatically make a "V" sign for victory with their fingers before fixing their gaze once more on their feet or the horizon in silence.

Is there still some morale in these men or is that just a routine gesture? I believe it is the latter.

On arrival at the base, the soldiers unload their weapons, remove their kit and immediately go into one of the dilapidated rooms without electricity where they undergo a medical examination after returning from the front.

For the survivors, "there are small injuries on the forehead, those who were buried under the rubble during a bombing have fractures and (injuries) linked to shrapnel," says Vadym Kyrylov, the brigade's doctor.

"But we mainly see somatic problems, like hypertension or chronic illnesses that have worsened," the 25-year-old adds.

Each battalion of the 81st brigade should have a doctor with a more senior one serving in the brigade's headquarter company. That a 25 year old one is in the brigade's doctor role again points to a lack of men.

- 'Trench foot' -

The men also greatly suffer from "trench foot" syndrome caused by prolonged exposure to moisture, unsanitary conditions or the cold.

"For a month they are not able to dry their shoes... so there are many feet-related injuries, mainly fungi and infections," the doctor says.

Military boots should be watertight. During my time in the military we trained in some very muddy areas but I never got my feet wet. One wonders what quality Ukrainian army boots have.

After the medical visit, they all have the same reflex: to isolate and use their phone to call a female partner, a child or a parent.

Soldiers cannot use their phones on the front, and any application that requires geolocation is banned.

How strict is the control of those policies? Experience says that if soldiers are allowed to have phones with them they will inevitably use them. That is why Russia prohibits its soldiers to carry phones.

Four soldiers reassemble the rusty metal bed frames and sweep the floor coated with dust to make a semblance of a room.

That does not sound like a fun place for rest and recreation. Are there even mattresses for those metal frames?

"It's the moment for the guys to relax, to take care of their physical and psychological injuries, to regain their strength before returning to battle," Samoylov says.

"They'll sleep warm, eat normal food and try to more or less get back on their feet."

Those troops were nine weeks on the frontline and now only get one week of rest in a miserable place. Samoylov is an optimist. None of those injuries, especially not the psychological ones, will heal within a week. It takes years to overcome the cruelties of war and sometimes more than a lifetime.

The Ukrainian army is obviously in a very bad shape as it pushes barely trained conscripts to the frontline where Russian artillery will eat them up. That it is in such a state is not astonishing though.

The Swiss military intelligence officer Jacques Baud has worked in the Ukraine and has written about the current war (here, here and here). He describes the sorry state the Ukrainian military was in from the get-go:

The Ukrainian army was then in a deplorable state. In October 2018, after four years of war, the chief Ukrainian military prosecutor, Anatoly Matios, stated that Ukraine had lost 2,700 men in the Donbass: 891 from illnesses, 318 from road accidents, 177 from other accidents, 175 from poisonings (alcohol, drugs), 172 from careless handling of weapons, 101 from breaches of security regulations, 228 from murders and 615 from suicides.

In fact, the army was undermined by the corruption of its cadres and no longer enjoyed the support of the population. According to a British Home Office report, in the March/April 2014 recall of reservists, 70 percent did not show up for the first session, 80 percent for the second, 90 percent for the third, and 95 percent for the fourth. In October/November 2017, 70% of conscripts did not show up for the “Fall 2017” recall campaign. This is not counting suicides and desertions (often over to the autonomists), which reached up to 30 percent of the workforce in the ATO area. Young Ukrainians refused to go and fight in the Donbass and preferred emigration, which also explains, at least partially, the demographic deficit of the country.

The Ukrainian Ministry of Defense then turned to NATO to help make its armed forces more “attractive.” Having already worked on similar projects within the framework of the United Nations, I was asked by NATO to participate in a program to restore the image of the Ukrainian armed forces. But this is a long-term process and the Ukrainians wanted to move quickly.

So, to compensate for the lack of soldiers, the Ukrainian government resorted to paramilitary militias. They are essentially composed of foreign mercenaries, often extreme right-wing militants. In 2020, they constituted about 40 percent of the Ukrainian forces and numbered about 102,000 men, according to Reuters. They were armed, financed and trained by the United States, Great Britain, Canada and France. There were more than 19 nationalities—including Swiss.

The Ukrainian army will not win the war nor will the fascist militias. The country simply has no chance.

'Western' governments are abusing the Ukraine and its soldiers. They want to 'weaken Russia' and do not allow the Ukraine to sue for peace.

That is criminal.

Jacques Baud again:

[D]espite [President Zelensky's] probable willingness to achieve a political settlement for the crisis with Russia, Zelensky is not allowed to do so. Just after he indicated his readiness to talk with Russia, on 25 February, the European Union decided two days later to provide €450M in arms to Ukraine. The same happened in March. As soon as Zelensky indicated he wanted to have talks with Vladimir Putin on 21 March, the European Union decided to double its military aid to €1 billion on 23 March. End of March, Zelensky made an interesting offer that was retracted shortly after.

Apparently, Zelensky is trying to navigate between Western pressure and his far right on the one hand and his concern to find a solution on the other, and is forced into a ” back-and-forth,” which discourages the Russian negotiators.
Today, Zelensky must lead his country under the sword of Damocles, with the blessing of Western politicians and unethical media. His lack of political experience made him an easy prey for those who were trying to exploit Ukraine against Russia, and in the hands of extreme right-wing movements. As he acknowledges in an interview with CNN, he was obviously lured into believing that Ukraine would enter NATO more easily after an open conflict with Russia, as Oleksey Arestovich, his adviser, confirmed in 2019.

The Ukraine has lost the war. All the weapons systems the 'west' is now pushing into it are of no use as the Ukraine obviously lacks the men to field them. They will likely get pilfered and in future some of them may well be used against the 'west' itself.

They would do some bloody justice.

Posted by b on May 2, 2022 at 17:32 UTC | Permalink

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What if the Ukrainian people rose up against their own oligarchs? Wouldn't that be the script change and how would the west spin it? Would they suddenly all become white nationalists?

Posted by: Mr. House | May 3 2022 0:14 utc | 101


"If anyone has link to a map(s) showing the likely area where UKR troops are in the Donbass or other parts of the former nation, please drop a link. Even if they are days old "

Posted by: Paul Gomez | May 3 2022 0:14 utc | 102

Jimmy | May 2 2022 21:47 utc | 63

I too wondered about the apparent slow progress of the Russian Donbass campaign but I've concluded that it is deliberate. Only the West has a timetable which includes quick results.

By taking its own sweet time Russia not only grinds down the Ukraine forces but it also builds up a whole new protective Russian province populated by people who support it. Having that several hundred kilometer buffer between Russia and any attacking force has another benefit. Which is that it can be used as a demonstration site to the rest of the Ukrainian people that being under Russian management has economic benefits which they are deprived of.

Realistically Russia will always have to cope with countries in Europe which are opposed to it - a fact of life in all European countries for hundreds if not thousands of years. Building a new country (Novorussia) which adds to Belarus and others like Hungary which are supportive just extends the support base. In turn they help expand the Russian economy.

If all this takes two or three years and is based on solid gains as opposed to a military blitzkrieg then slow steady progress one brick at a time is hard to deny by the Western media. The facts on the ground speak for themselves.

Posted by: Cyberhorse | May 3 2022 0:14 utc | 103

What i dont understand is, when the Ukrainian army is so weak an the Russian is strong with only about 10% of deployed forces, why is such a so slow progress in Phase 2? Since days as Phase 2 was launched there is no really progress only some villages. If i were Putin or the Russian military staff, i would deploy much more troops, artillery etc. to accelerate the Phase and crush the frontlines in Donbass and the south of Ukraine? Why doesnt happening this?

The Russians are not divulging their operational plans... formally...

We must go by the results.....

Mariupol was taken because it is the major industrial city of the DPR, and because it is a transport hub. The latter is critical to supporting a Corps level action sweeping north along the Denipr River to envelop the UkroNazis from the south. The north envelopment drives south from Izium... Mariupol also had to be taken to eliminate attacks from The Azov Nazis against the rear of this force. That has been accomplished.

Note that a highest priority task of the DPR administration is putting the port back in operation. This to enable supplies by ship from Russia.

The DPR militias have been engaged in frontal assaults all along the contact line for the express purpose of fixing the UkroNazis in place, while the Russians envelop them from both north and south.

Once the envelopment is complete, The UkroNazis will be obliterated by artillery, and aviation.

The west entry to the cauldron is being kept open to entice The Zelensky Regime to send all of it's soldiers into it. Once virtually all of them area inside, the jaws will be snapped shut, and the killing accelerates.

This also ensures that Ukraine does not have resources to defend it's cities, or to attack Russia itself.



Posted by: Dr. George W Oprisko | May 3 2022 0:20 utc | 104

Russia must not stop until it takes all Black Sea littoral land mass from Ukraine. Turn Ukraine into a land locked country.

Russia must supply captured NATO weapons to Somali pirates and other groups that can disrupt western shipping. That will be perfect justice. At the moment NATO gets away with weapons proliferation. They should be made to pay and pay big. NATO countries are already suffering high inflation and high factor costs. Attacks on NATO commercial shipping will exacerbate it and force them to a compromise with Russia.

Posted by: Jason | May 3 2022 0:28 utc | 105

Well said Roger.

Agree with you.

Posted by: Jason | May 3 2022 0:31 utc | 106

You are right Venom.

The plight of Ukie women and children is very sad. They are in countries where they hate the people (as much as they hate Russians). A terrible loss of dignity and safety.

Ukie men are dying in their droves in Ukraine fighting a losing war. The toll of separation from family must be very high as they expected Russia to be exhausted of war within days! Russia goes Marathon man!

Don't forget the Ukie economy which is in shambles. It was not the main concern for a couple of weeks but as the war goes on for months it is a big problem.

Ukie is a devastated nation. It will not recover for a decade at least.

Russia must keep the comedian for as long as they can to capture the entire Black Sea littoral and decapitate the piece thereafter.

Posted by: Jason | May 3 2022 0:40 utc | 107

Posted by: Roger | May 2 2022 20:49 utc | 48

The Russians should be broadcasting their own television channels, in Ukrainian...

Why? Everyone in Ukraine speaks Russian. The exception is the western one fourth of Ukraine, where people actually use Ukrainian for written communication. Until a few years ago Ukrainian television was in Russian. The Servant of the People was a Russian language TV show. Poroshenko and Zelensky could hardly speak Ukrainian when they were made president.

Ukraine's policy of cultural genocide aims to abolish the Russian language. The first step was taken eight years ago, right after Maidan, when all Russian media was banned. The latest step was the ban on shop assistants and other service workers from speaking Russian to customers.

A recent video from a health center from some liberated town in Donbass showed signs on doors with a Ukrainian and a Russian flag. The text – in Ukrainian – on the Russian flag said "This language listened to." Even if the Russian speaking patient demands that the Russian speaking doctor speaks in Russian to her, he will not, as this would be a criminal offense. The doctor cannot know if the patient is for real, an informant, or a mole sent by the Language Police. (A similar "Language Police" has operated in the Baltic States for decades.)

Posted by: Petri Krohn | May 3 2022 0:47 utc | 108

Re: slow progress in Phase 2

The population of eastern Ukraine is majority ethnic Russian.
A significant % of the armed forces facing the Ukrainians in this area are from the Luhansk and Donetsk Peoples Republics.
A significant % of these have families on both sides of the front line.

Are you going to lay down an artillery barrage on a village where your mum/brother/cousins/uncles live?

Posted by: ted001 | May 3 2022 0:50 utc | 109

P.S. - Derussification is a policy of cultural genocide. It aims to destroy the language, culture, religion, history, symbols, monuments, and identity of Soviet Ukrainians.

Posted by: Petri Krohn | May 3 2022 0:54 utc | 110

Posted by: Jason | May 3 2022 0:40 utc | 107

Yes indeed a month ago I read an article in the guardian and western military "experts" were parroting the Ukrainian military that the Russians "had 3 days of supply left"

Like the Russian military is completely incompetent when it came to logistics planning and all that stuff.

Like it takes a smart western brain or something to figure out how much fuel, food and ammunition you need

Posted by: Jimmy | May 3 2022 0:54 utc | 111

If Poland takes Lviv etc., all the better as they get the job of subduing a people who hate them as much as they hate the Russians.

Posted by: Roger | May 3 2022 0:12 utc | 100

Poland currently offers refuge to around 3 million Ukrainians. Many Western Ukrainians went there not only because it is right across the border but because the Polish language is close to their own. I suspect they'll get along - as long as Poland keeps their own extremists in check.

I don't think it's the simple folk who hate each other. In most cases, it's the leaders. The leaders, and would-be-leaders. The leaders and their most ardent followers.

Posted by: Martina | May 3 2022 1:03 utc | 112

Around the beginning of the war, the going rate for a draft-age male to exit the country was reported to be $10k cash. A steep price for some, but the alternative would be a few short months as cannon fodder for a military administration directed by a combination cynical oligarchs, cynical foreign sponsors, and neo-nazis.

Posted by: ptb | May 2 2022 18:13 utc | 12

You can do worse than being directed by "cynical oligarchs, cynical foreign sponsors, and neo-nazis." And that is being commanded by somewhat competent officers in the style of WWI.

One side is taking over a position that is annoying or prestigious. Say, some hills near Verdun. The other side tries to take it back. Positions get entrenched. Positions get taken over. Positions get taken back. Blood flows every day.

After few years all survivors are mad to a lesser or larger degree and you have a bloody revolution.

During WWII, commanders got the trick of rotating the frontline units, and that decreased "trench sickness". Ukraine has less reserves, and serious logistics problems, units on the move are vulnerable to air attacks, so there is little of rotation of brigades.


The difference seems to be that Russian take it a bit easy and have better fire power and air support, so the balance of losses is not symmetric. Once Ukraine runs out of highly motivated and trained "nationalist" platoon officers, fighting to "the last Ukrainian" will become problematic.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 3 2022 1:13 utc | 113

Posted by: Martina | May 3 2022 1:03 utc | 112

Well The Ukrainian Banderites in World War II ethically cleansed Galicia (western Ukraine) of ethnic Poles and killed around 50.000 to 100.000 ethnic Poles there, so knowing the mentality of the people there I doubt this has been forgotten.

Then take into account that the ideology of Bandera is now more or less the ideology of Ukranian Natiolism .......

Posted by: Jimmy | May 3 2022 1:13 utc | 114

Jimmy @ 90 ended with;"Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace"

More like; Perpetual war for perpetual profits...

Posted by: vetinLA | May 3 2022 1:14 utc | 115

A Conflict Between UAF and Government?

The following post appeared on Intel Slava Z on May 1st:

The Ukrainian Armed Forces could not stand the lies of Kyiv and exposed the lies about the "ghost of Kyiv"

The command of the Ukrainian Air Force on the official confirmed FB page admitted that the "ghost of Kyiv" is a cynical lie, which was fed all over Ukraine by the media and politicians.

"He has never been a living person - this is a" superhero-legend "... A collective image of the pilots of the 40th tactical aviation brigade, protecting the sky of the capital!"

And the Air Force of Ukraine refuted the lie: "Military pilots are not yet studying abroad on the F-16, as much as we all would not like it."

How many more such monstrous lies did Kyiv come up with, fooling its people?

Key is the fact that the UAF leadership, or some portion of it, is repudiating some of the "foundation myths" of the present conflict. First is the acknowledgement that the "Ghost of Kiev" was false, second is the assertion that no air force pilots are being trained to operate F-16 aircraft (a type the Ukraine does not at present possess).

What caught my eye was the fact the reported senior military leadership have informed the public that the president of Ukraine has lied. One can imagine what would happen if Austin were to publicly state that Biden is delivering a false perspective on the war to the American public. In Ukraine, to act against the state results in summary execution as demonstrated by the SBU execution of a diplomat on the UA negotiating team.

I believe there are three interpretations of this Intel- slave post.

1) It is an intentionally false post intended to sow dissension within the government.
2) It delivers a truth (the "Ghost" does not exist) to conceal a falsehood (the US may in fact be delivering F-16 training but does not wish this to be known)
3) It creates room for an alternate interpretation of present events.

I believe 3 to be the correct interpretation. The post demonstrates a schism between some portion of the UAF leadership and the present civilian leadership. This is reasonable. It is the UAF that is tasked with dying for the glory of Ukraine while Z counts his multiple passports, his millions of USD, and basking in the sun at his future Florida residence. It is the UAF leadership that is likely painfully aware that they are forced to wage war with a conscript army unequal to the task, that they have no hope of retraining the farmer and elder citizen conscripts in the use of the advanced weapons systems being supplied by the UK, Canada, US, and NATO partners. That modern weapons (NLAW, Stinger, Javelin, TB2 drones) are already in use on the battlefield and have not proved decisive. That the melange of equipment being supplied is obsolete, or otherwise unsuited to the task, and presents significant logistics and supply nightmares due the extensive range of spares required, but not shipped, and the different calibre weapons (NATO standard vs Warsaw Pact). That the US, UK, Canada, are essentially conspiring to kill off two entire generations of UA males. That the promised billions in military assistance is less than 10% of the cost of repairing the damage done to the country and its infrastructure. That the conflict is really little more than an opportunity for NATO partners to dispose of obsolete weapons and then buy replacements from American arms firms using some of the $35 billion in aid money offered up by Biden. That the conflict has been a decisive RF victory and this fact has been apparent for several weeks.

If you were an officer loyal to your country would you not seek an end to this charade? Would you not seek to preserve the lives that you were meant to defend? Would you not feel that something must be done to end the slaughter? Would you not begin to think of displacing the civilian power?

These thoughts raise other questions.

It is well known that the RF intelligence services have penetrated many former east bloc governments including Ukraine. What is the likelihood that the RF has contacts, informers, sympathizers, within the UAF?

Is it not possible that these persons are witnessing the methodical destruction of the AZOV UkiNazis and, with this threat diminished or removed, now feel able to act against the right wingers?

Is it not possible that some of these internal dissidents have been providing intelligence to the RF since before the commencement of the conflict? Putin began his attempt at diplomatic resolution well before the outbreak of war. Is is possible he had prior knowledge of the UAF build-up and the threat to the Donbass? Is it possible that he also had knowledge of US bio-labs? (I had that knowledge several years ago due to an intrepid Bulgarian journalist. Putin is presumed to have better sources.) That Putin likely had knowledge of NATO training missions and the supply to UA of advanced weapons and the RF intervention was informed by this knowledge?

Is it possible that in the weeks to come we may see a military putsch in 404, the removal of Z from power, the rejection of NATO interference in UA affairs, the expulsion of NATO personnel, some form of rapprochement with the RF and an agreement to assist the RF in the process of de-nazification? After all, if you live in 404 and are aware that a faction of less than 5% of the population has sized state power and brought incredible destruction and suffering upon the country, would this not be a responsible course of action?

Posted by: Sushi | May 3 2022 1:14 utc | 116

What do you believe Russia's intentions are with respect to Odessa?

Posted by: b | May 3 2022 1:18 utc | 117

Posted by: passerby | May 2 2022 20:01 utc | 36
Posted by: Rasta | May 2 2022 17:59 utc | 6

I am curious what your prediction is on Europe.
My prediction for Europe is a poorer and more violent society.

My prediction is that it will continue within the cycle of self destruction and renaissance as it always has.

Yes, there will be periods where it becomes a poorer and more violent society, but once the current crop of elites have been dragged out of their palaces and guillotined in the squares, as is every so often the case in Europe, the sun will emerge from behind the clouds again ... for a time.

But perhaps it must still get much worse before it gets better.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | May 3 2022 1:24 utc | 118

What do you believe Russia's intentions are with respect to Odessa?

Would make sense if they would take it, connecting the conquered territories in the south of Ukraine with the break away pro Russian republic transnistria in Moldaova and making Ukraine a land locked country. Would also make sense to do it after the Ukrainian army has been defeated in Donbass.

Posted by: Jimmy | May 3 2022 1:24 utc | 119

"...Everyone in Ukraine speaks Russian. The exception is the western one fourth of Ukraine, where people actually use Ukrainian for written communication. Until a few years ago Ukrainian television was in Russian. The Servant of the People was a Russian language TV show. Poroshenko and Zelensky could hardly speak Ukrainian when they were made president.
Ukraine's policy of cultural genocide aims to abolish the Russian language. The first step was taken eight years ago, right after Maidan, when all Russian media was banned. The latest step was the ban on shop assistants and other service workers from speaking Russian to customers..."
Petri Krohn@108

Thank you for making this correction. The matter of the Russian language and the ridiculous and barbaric attempts to replace it by violence, backed up by networks of paid informers, is one that the western media is at great pains to ignore.

In Canada the story of the Russian language and its speakers being persecuted- and deprived of the franchise- in Ukraine, Latvia and elsewhere ought to have particular resonance in the province of Quebec, where a long struggle against the imposition of English only recently died down.
It will have resonance too among First Nations people.

The language story is closely related, of course, to the other story ignored by the western media: the long war against the common people of the Donbas and the preparations being made-under NATO command- for the ethnic cleansing of New Russia.

It is impossible for anyone acquainted with he barest facts about these matters to continue to believe the dominant narrative in the western media, which is why beyond NATO and its anglo cousinage, nobody in the world does nothing more than pretend to swallow the guff from NATO. And then only to remain on the payroll or prevent the deportation of a family member studying in London or Boston.

Posted by: bevin | May 3 2022 1:29 utc | 120

re Sushi | May 3 2022 1:14 utc | 116

"....Is it possible that in the weeks to come we may see a military putsch in 404, the removal of Z from power, the rejection of NATO interference in UA affairs, the expulsion of NATO personnel, some form of rapprochement with the RF and an agreement to assist the RF in the process of de-nazification? After all, if you live in 404 and are aware that....."

excellent, Sushi, most excellent

I am hopeful that the possibilities you raise towards the end of your piece bring the Ukrainian leadership back to reality, and to the negotiating table.

meanwhile, get rid of the neo-nazis, the other right-wing groups, and the captive pro-US political Elites, heck get rid of Zelensky himself, though he might be useful... and there could be good reason for a resolution

Posted by: michaelj72 | May 3 2022 1:32 utc | 121

I never cease to be amused by the comments of how Russia is going too slow against the mighty(sic) ukie army! As if they had any other military operation to compare this to. Lol!

Posted by: Nook | May 3 2022 1:37 utc | 122

osted by: bevin | May 3 2022 1:29 utc | 120

I remember when Poroshenko got into power folks were saying when he started a speech he would start with 2 sentences in Ukrainian and continue the speech in Russian.

When back then some Ukrainian soldiers were interviewed by Ukrainian TV, folks were saying : "o they are trying so hard to speak Ukrainian"

Posted by: Jimmy | May 3 2022 1:37 utc | 123

Looks like the captured British mercenaries are in deep legal trouble, charged with numerous crimes by the Donetsk People's Republic. Below is a video of mercenary Shaun Pinner being charged.

It should be noted that while the Russian Federation does not have a death penalty, the DPR does. Would-be Western mercenaries are advised to stay far away from the Donbass.

Posted by: Nate | May 3 2022 1:40 utc | 124

@ Petri Krohn | May 3 2022 0:47 utc | 108

thanks petri... i agree with bevin - this info needs much greater exposure and it is getting none in the western msm..

@ Sushi | May 3 2022 1:14 utc | 116

thanks sushi.. excellent speculation and ruminations.. it is an open question, but you are picking up some clear fissures in the ukraine story here..

Posted by: james | May 3 2022 1:52 utc | 125

Posted by: Nate | May 3 2022 1:40 utc | 124

Well they charged him with a bunch of crimes one of them was trying to overthrow the constitutional order of of the DPR, which is basically just fighting the DPR they also accused him of attacking civilians.

Seems to me this is most likely just showing off a war trophy; the capture of a hated British mercenary, unless he really has personally fired at civilians, I think he will most likely get a POW treatment.

Posted by: Jimmy | May 3 2022 1:55 utc | 126

Cyberhorse @ 103 - Well said. I admit to thinking that the RF forces would steamroll the UKR army in the early going - especially after they virtually eliminated the UKR air forces and 'navy' in the first few days. Before long, though, I - as you - came to the conclusion that a deliberate and careful campaign was planned and was/is the best approach. Masterful. Seems obvious, too, that there should be less animosity from the locals once they get past the Ukie propaganda.

I think that those of us who see the effect on USUK/EU economies of slow strangulation of the flow of commmodities from both the UKR and the RF can also see that this is a powerful weapon. By the way the ruble closed at 70 to the dollar in NYC today. Taking it slow is the water-drip torture - I expect some screaming soon...

b asks about Odessa. If the RF can keep the grinding process going without being confronted by some assymetrical attacks by the USUK military/CIA agents, and if such attack(s) don't unbalance the current RF operating modes too badly, then I think that they will take Odessa and the Black Sea littoral. Seems logical. Then they can also recruit the Ukrainian farmers by being an inexpensive port for grain shipments.

Posted by: Paul Spencer | May 3 2022 1:58 utc | 127

Meandering Merrily @ 38:

You'd be better off perusing this website to see if Vladimir Putin is taking any time off for health-related issues.

Posted by: Jen | May 3 2022 1:58 utc | 128

@ Sushi | May 3 2022 1:14 utc | 116 with the scenario of the reasons for a Ukraine military coup

I agree and thanks for that.

My thought as I read your conclusion was to ask rhetorically if the responsible course of action you ask for of the Ukraine military applies to the military of all empire nations?

Of course it does.

Wait until the empire nation's militaries are reacquainted with the concept of money with intrinsic value and see where their support of debt measured value goes.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 3 2022 2:02 utc | 129

re. Odessa
It seems to me that the Russians have become very cautious.
Perhaps waiting to let NATO make next move.

Russias patience is difficult for western power to tolerate and the lack of exciting news is making hard on the western media.
Russia is a bit extended. Need to collapse that cauldren, I would think.

Also it seems that the javelins, stingers and maybe kamikazis and tactical support have made some difference. It is possible that it is primarily the cannon fodder that surrender.

Posted by: jared | May 3 2022 2:03 utc | 130

What do you believe Russia's intentions are with respect to Odessa?

Posted by: b | May 3 2022 1:18 utc | 117

Frivolous of me to hazard a guess, but leaving the city as part of whatever Ukrainian state is left would seem to me to be strategically unconscionable and an insult to the memory of those who were murdered there in 2014 -- and those who will be sacrificing their lives to liberate it in the near future.

Posted by: malenkov | May 3 2022 2:03 utc | 131

Very o/t but also very important wrt to the crumbling situation in the U.S., domestically.

Politico has allegedly leaked a majority opinion from Justice Alito in the USSC that will overturn Roe Vs. Wade. If ever there was a lynchpin of the Federal Government in the overbearing power it has over the states, Roe Vs. Wade is it!

If you also want to know what this summer will look like, think the Summer of Love, in 2020, (lol!) On steroids.

Could this then give the impetus for an actual military coup when civil unrest grips the nation?

Is this our way out of world conflagration and into the merciful greater depression that will relieve the world of its western stranglehold?

God willing! God willing!

Posted by: NemesisCalling | May 3 2022 2:50 utc | 132

a bit of a history lesson

A lot of those people involved in the murders of the 42+ people are still in the Ukraine, in the Odessa area, and are soon going to pay.
Russians With Attitude @RWApodcast

8 years ago, on May 2nd 2014, Ukrainian radicals murdered at least 42 people in Odessa for the crime of being Russian. They burned them alive. They had tacit approval from the government; no one was punished. From that day on, it was clear that war had become inevitable.

The War in Donbass had barely started; after May 2nd, 1000s of volunteers from Odessa & Russia joined the Militias. Ukrainian social networks were full of “funny” videos of people jumping to their deaths to escape the fire. Restaurants added "Vatnik shashlik" to their menus.

Young girls poured the Molotov cocktails that lit the Trade Union House on fire; Ukrainian politicians joked about “the traditional May BBQ” for years; people who were involved in the massacre are now popular bloggers, pundits, advisors, military leaders.

3:37 AM · May 2, 2022·Twitter Web App
5,085 Retweets 323 Quote Tweets 11.9K Likes

Posted by: michaelj72 | May 3 2022 2:58 utc | 133

@Posted by: Martina | May 3 2022 1:03 utc | 112

The Banderists have had eight years to poison the minds of the North Western Ukrainian population through education, the media etc. Anyone under 20 could be thoroughly brainwashed, and within the rest of the population there are significant undercurrents that would have been built upon with continual propaganda. It doesn't take a great percentage of a population to turn it into a nightmare for the authorities. What happens when all those Ukrainians are told that their children will be taught in Polish in the schools? There is a lot of history for hatred to rapidly build from:

"In 2016, Poland's rightwing-dominated parliament recognised the Volhynia massacres as a "genocide", a term that Kiev has rejected. Between 1942 and 1945, members of the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) killed up to 100,000 Poles in the Volhynia region of what is now northwest Ukraine. The UPA's main objective was to win Ukraine's independence by ousting Nazi and later Soviet occupiers and to clear Poles from territories that were historically Ukrainian land. It was ethnic cleansing, so that's what we would call it today," Duda said, quoted by the PAP Polish news agency at a cemetery in Olyka, near Lutsk. The 2016 Polish resolution also recognises bloody reprisals by Polish partisan groups against Ukrainians that various sources say could have claimed up to 20,000 lives."

Posted by: Roger | May 3 2022 2:59 utc | 134

I am reading reports of recent bombing at Azovstal and after reading that 100 or so have been released through UN support I expect the rest are civilization war cannon fodder.

I expect that empire believes it is necessary to destroy the biolab and physical military evidence of support/management. It will be portrayed as more Russian war crimes by the West I suspect.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 3 2022 3:05 utc | 135

RE: The Australian Wheat Harvest 2021-22

It looks like "Gro Intelligence" got it wrong - the Australian Wheat crop (harvested over December-January) turned out to be the 4th highest on record. The rain we have been getting in southern New South Wales is a good sign for the winter crop that will be planted soon.

Summer crop prospects excellent
Summer crop prospects in 2021–22 are excellent following favourable seasonal conditions during late spring and summer in Queensland and northern New South Wales. Well above average rainfall between October 2021 and January 2022 is forecast to be beneficial for crop plantings and yields, despite record November rainfall causing inundation and loss of some early sown summer crops. Production prospects are the highest in southern Queensland and northern New South Wales, where record yields and above average planted area is forecast. Production in central Queensland is also forecast to be above average but less favourable than other regions. This is mainly because drier conditions during January in central Queensland limited planting opportunities for late sown summer crops (see the Seasonal conditions overview).

Yield prospects for summer crops are expected to benefit from the favourable rainfall outlook forecast for autumn. According to the latest three-month rainfall outlook (March to May), issued by the Bureau of Meteorology on 17 February 2022, rainfall during autumn is more likely to be above average in all summer cropping regions.

Total summer crop production in Australia is forecast to rise by 64% in 2021–22 to 5.3 million tonnes, the fourth highest on record (Figure 1). Area planted to summer crops is estimated to have increased by 48% to around 1.5 million hectares, 35% above the 10-year average to 2020–21. Rising dam storages have boosted plantings of irrigated cotton and rice. Well above average spring and summer rainfall has also increased plantings to dryland cotton and grain sorghum.

Record winter crop for Australia
Harvesting of winter crops this season is now complete. National winter crop production is estimated to be the highest on record, driven by record production in Western Australia and near record production in New South Wales. Production in other states is also estimated to be well above average. The record national outcome was realised following most crops being in good condition at the end of winter, followed by generally favourable conditions over spring which further improved yields nationally. However, record November rainfall in most cropping regions in Queensland and New South Wales led to widespread flooding, weather damage and delays to winter crop harvests. Widespread downgrades of wheat quality in New South Wales have been reported. An unprecedented amount of low protein and feed quality wheat from New South Wales is expected as a result. Grain qualities in other states have been mostly average and as expected given the seasonal conditions. A common trade-off of high yields can be the subsequent dilution of protein levels, and this was noticeable in Western Australia where lower than average qualities of wheat were observed.

Mice population in cropping regions have generally declined during summer. Increased baiting of mice on farms during spring 2021 was effective and the very wet spring and summer has also helped. There have been no reports of significant damage to date.

Total winter crop production is estimated to be 61.9 million tonnes in 2021–22. This represents an upward revision of 6% from the December 2021 edition of the Australian Crop Report. Production of wheat, barley and canola are all estimated to have reached new national records.

Posted by: Aristonicus | May 3 2022 3:07 utc | 136

Odessa would be the perfect place for an International Film Festival. And who more appropriate than Sergei Eisenstein, a Russian speaking Latvian who would be persecuted in NATO Latvia, to name the Festival for.

Posted by: bevin | May 3 2022 3:13 utc | 137

Re: Odessa

Those with the financial ability to do so are leaving Odessa. As with elsewhere, only women and children are permitted to leave, Men and boys 15 and older are prohibited from leaving, and unconfirmed reports of single girls/women 18 to 30 being targeted for military service.

Moldova and Romania are the preferred destinations. Affordable accommodation is difficult to find, a friend and her daughter spent 3 days on the street and can only get hotel rooms in Mamaia, Romania. Note that Moldova, Romania or Bulgaria are not willingly accepting Ukie refugees.

The Kherson region and some 30 or klm or so surrounding that place is completely without internet and has only extremely limited mobile phone coverage. My friend there has managed to call to Russia only once in 2 days, his call was terminated after 4 minutes. It will be some time before all communications are routed via Russian services, everything is/will be monitored by Russian security services.

Mykolaiv and Odessa are on Russian list.

Posted by: nobody | May 3 2022 3:18 utc | 138

@117 "What do you believe Russia's intentions are with respect to Odessa?"

I think it depends on how the people of Odessa respond to a vote of autonomy in Kherson. I doubt if Russian forces would move in unless they are sure of a friendly reception.

Posted by: dh | May 3 2022 3:28 utc | 139

Wonder why the Beskid tunnel isn't hit. A 100 trains a day hauling weapons

Posted by: Eighthman | May 3 2022 3:31 utc | 140

More tales of dead Russian Generals:

Russia has lost another general in Vladimir Putin's invasion of Ukraine, according to top Ukrainian officials, The Kyiv Post has reported
Maj. Gen. Andrei Simonov was killed near the city of Izyum in the Kharkiv region, which is currently occupied by Russian forces, Ukrainian authorities said.

As usual with the western media, there's just no knowing if these reports are true or complete nonsense.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | May 3 2022 3:31 utc | 141

Posted by: Eighthman | May 3 2022 3:31 utc | 140

Wonder why the Beskid tunnel isn't hit. A 100 trains a day hauling weapons

Martyanov mentioned this on the latest Duran livestream. Hi thinks Russia will hit this tunnel soon as it becomes more of a threat.

I think the Russians are just waiting for the Ukrainians to become overly reliant on that tunnel before they sweep the leg out ...

Posted by: Arch Bungle | May 3 2022 3:33 utc | 142

This war will not come to an end amicably unless and until the empire’s oligarchs, those war profiteers, those paying no taxes, those feeding us the gender bending and Roe v. Wade crap, those 400 persons/families are held to account.

To do that, the couch potato citizens, and keyboard warriors will have to get up off their arse and do it themselves.


Yes, we know who they are. We know where they live. The list is published annually, with pride might I add. Occupy them — Wall St. style. I’d bet that would scare the bejeebers out of them.
And no, before you get on your high horse denouncing what I am calling for, I am not calling for bodily injury to anyone. Just imprison them, in-between the two ears, their mind that is. Their yachts be waiting.

Posted by: Sakineh Bagoom | May 3 2022 3:54 utc | 143

What do you believe Russia's intentions are with respect to Odessa?

Posted by: b | May 3 2022 1:18 utc | 117

The Russian intention, clearly stated is to "de-nazify and de-militarise" the region.

The Romanian's at the behest of NATO could try a dumb stunt and occupy that region. Everything is possible.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | May 3 2022 4:02 utc | 144

Over on someone posted a comment that I found to be brilliant (for a mimd-bemdimg scenario). It was in response to an article talking about Hungary supposedly looking for a land-grab in Ukraine. The comment asked the question what would happen if Ukraine attacked Hungary (which is an actual NATO member).

Posted by: Seer | May 3 2022 4:17 utc | 145

Grr... Mind-Bending!

Posted by: Seer | May 3 2022 4:18 utc | 146

I started a nuclear war survival novel back in the early '80s when I was an undergraduate. My main survival protagonists were U.S. Midwest people located in western Minnesota. This was back when a majority of U.S land-based ICBMs where upwind of me, now only about half that amount is still in that situation. I got through "book I" over time but haven't touched the manuscript for a long time, was hoping to finish it when I retire in a few years.

I don't know why but the book starts in about the third week of May...

Posted by: DakotaRog | May 3 2022 4:20 utc | 147

I don't want to read too much into the AFP article, but but the fact that the brigade doctor mentions "hypertension" as one of the most common chronic illnesses he has to deal with could be another indicator that the conscripts of this Ukrainian brigade tend to be on the older side.

Posted by: mr.unknown | May 3 2022 4:25 utc | 148

@ PeterAU1 #55

Most good management farmers here in the western Midwest USA bought their 2022 fertilizer last fall/early winter so they're mostly set for this year. It will be 2023 that they will start to suck hind titty for N,P,K. As for diesel costs, its high cost this year will probably be offset for the high price of the corn this year if global supply is disrupted (Ukraine out, I heard Brazil had a drought during their growing season, don't know about the Argies). But what will happen in 2023, if there is a 2023...

Posted by: DakotaRog | May 3 2022 4:33 utc | 149

@143 sakineh bagoom

This will reverberate across the phoney left and cause massive political aversion on both sides.

Politics in the U.S. will be ground down to an absolute halt. Businesses will no longer be able to spread their woke garbage without fear of alienating half of their consumers.

The U.S. is finally at a tipping point.

Let families be divided if need be. As long as it shuts down the satanic behemoth which is the u.s.

Thx be to God!

Posted by: NemesisCalling | May 3 2022 4:37 utc | 150

**Apparently**, Valery Gerasimov has been injured at Izyum:

Again, western media, most likely propaganda ... but who knows. Would be nice to have a mechanism of verification other than "wait for the truth to come out" ...

Posted by: Arch Bungle | May 3 2022 4:50 utc | 151

Posted by: nobody | May 3 2022 3:18 utc | 138

Mykolaiv and Odessa are on Russian list.

Really? Wow Sherlock, how did you manage to figure this out?
Btw, you are mixing Ukrainian and Russian transliterations of city names, it looks funny.
Are you Ukrainian?

Posted by: hopehely | May 3 2022 5:00 utc | 152

The Ukrainian army is obviously in a very bad shape as it pushes barely trained conscripts to the frontline where Russian artillery will eat them up.

I've been repeatedly reading that the Ukrainian forces should have long since pulled back to their 2nd and third lines of defence; I suspect the experienced and more able forces have already done so, and they threw inexperienced cannon fodder on the first line of defence just to die needlessly.

Posted by: BM | May 3 2022 5:08 utc | 153

From Telegram:

Oliver Stone on Facebook:

-- Neocon Objectives --

I’ve been following the Ukraine situation since 2014 with Robert Parry leading the way as a teacher. I’ve followed the burnings in Odessa, the persecution without legal rights and murders of journalists, mayors, politicians, and citizens. I’ve followed the banning of the main opposition party, which had higher polls than the Zelenskyy government. I’ve been shocked by the sheer hatred expressed against the Russian-Ukrainian minority. It’s a long and sad story devolving from the 2014 coup, co-engineered by the U.S., which stripped Ukraine of its neutrality and made it vociferously anti-Russian; in the eight years since, some 14,000 innocent people in the Ukraine have been killed, none of which was seriously covered by our media.

I’ve watched with mounting fear these past weeks as Victoria Nuland once again emerged out of the blue, warning the Russians and us -- the target audience -- that if the Russians use a nuclear device of any kind, there’ll be hell to pay. This was quickly picked up by a host of Administration officials and TV channels in the following days, amplifying the same idea -- Russia going nuclear. All this coming because of Putin’s restatement of Russia’s nuclear policy, which btw is not as aggressive as our nuclear posture. This made me wonder, why repeat this over and over? First, there were all the war crimes charges which came fast and furious and need serious investigation and evidence.

As a result, I wonder if the U.S. is setting the stage for a low-yield nuclear explosion, of unknown origin, somewhere in the Donbass region, killing thousands of Ukrainians? Of course, if that happened, God forbid, all the world’s eyes would be trained, like a Pavlov dog, to blame Russia. That guilt has been set up already in advance, regardless of who launched the device. This usage would certainly impact the remaining 50% of world opinion, which isn’t in the Western camp. Russia would be the Satan, the Beelzebub. Keep in mind, it’s hard to know where a nuclear device is fired from, especially in a fast-moving situation like this war, in which it seems Russia can be accused of any behavior, no matter how preposterous. It would probably take a few days to find out the truth, but the truth isn’t important. The perception is, and the U.S. is running a perception war with great skill and blunt force, saturating the CNN/Fox airwaves and our satellite countries in Europe and Asia as I’ve never seen before.

In doing this, we’d be one step closer to getting what we hope is another Yeltsin, who can create for our country another huge ideological and business opportunity. But, more important, in the bargain, isolate China from Russia. Of course, China would be the next target if Russia falls. This, I believe, is the dream scenario of the neoconservative anarchists in our government to make what they deem a better “rule-based world.”

Now let Karlof1 tell Oliver Stone that he's delusional because there will be an independent investigation that will find the radiation signature of American nuclear weapons, not Russian. Go ahead, tell him, like you did me when I predicted this, karlof1.

Posted by: Biswapriya Purkayast | May 3 2022 5:23 utc | 154

Posted by: Seer | May 3 2022 4:17 utc | 145

The comment asked the question what would happen if Ukraine attacked Hungary (which is an actual NATO member).

The part of Ukraine bordering Hungary is called Transcarpathia.
Do you understand what that geographically means, and how that would play as a factor for that kind of scenario?

Posted by: hopehely | May 3 2022 5:24 utc | 155

NemesisCalling, #132,

I don't know where you're located but I was surprised tonight on an extractive outdoor forum I belong to how many "good ole boys" are just itching for Antifa to go nuts if SCOTUS does over turn Roe v Wade and kick abortion back to the states. Antifa might get away with 2020 round 2 in the central cities but if they come out into the neighborhoods of the suburbs and exurbs in most states and start doing their violence thing, a good number of them won't be going home to their mommas. There's a lot of just-under the surface pissed off Americans and if Antifa is the DNC/establishment cannon fodder, a lot of guys say bring it on. Goose shot at 30 meters or less is not like getting hit with a rubber bullet and less dangerous to the neighbors. The scab of 2020 is not healed over...

Posted by: DakotaRog | May 3 2022 5:26 utc | 156

interesting perspective and facts. from the link by b to Jacques Baud, well worth a full read:
Our Interview with Jacques Baud

TP: Why is Putin hated so much by the Western elite?

JB: Putin became Western elite’s “bête noire” in 2007 with his famous speech in Munich. Until then, Russia had only moderately reacted to NATO expansion. But as the US withdrew from the ABM Treaty in 2002 and started negotiations with some East European countries to deploy anti-ballistic missiles, Russia felt the heat and Putin virulently criticized the US and NATO.

This was the start of a relentless effort to demonize Vladimir Putin and to weaken Russia. The problem was definitely not human rights or democracy, but the fact that Putin dared to challenge the western approach. The Russians have in common with the Swiss the fact that they are very legalistic. They try to strictly follow the rules of international law. They tend to follow “law-based International order.” Of course, this is not the image we have, because we are used to hiding certain facts. Crimea is a case in point.....

.....What the West is promoting is an international order based on the “law of the strongest.” As long as the US was the sole superpower, everything was fine. But as soon as China and Russia started to emerge as world powers, the US tried to contain them...."

and thus we have the threat/s of a world war on not one, but two fronts.

Posted by: michaelj72 | May 3 2022 5:34 utc | 157

Posted by: hopehely | May 3 2022 5:24 utc | 155

Don't make it difficult. This is an issue of what the US/West would do IF presented with such a scenario. How would the story be spun given the insanely massive Yellow+Blue propaganda blitz pushed by the US/West?

I personally have no opinion on Ukraine's or Hungary's intensions. Their histories, and anyone who has been following along with the Big Game would understand this, isn't important to the drivers of all this mess (review that which has been going on in the middle east over the last 2+ decades).

Posted by: Seer | May 3 2022 5:44 utc | 158

@Posted by: Aristonicus | May 3 2022 3:07 utc | 136

Looks like they did, so at least Australia will have a better than expected crop. Australia is the 6th biggest exporter of wheat, ahead of Russia, US, Canada, France and Ukraine.

Posted by: Roger | May 3 2022 5:49 utc | 159

@Posted by: michaelj72 | May 3 2022 5:34 utc | 157

The hatred of Putin goes back to 2003 when he started taking down the oligarchs, he went from being "Bush's friend" to "the devil who betrayed us" in a matter of weeks. Khodorkovsky was about to sell Exxon a big chunk of Russia's oil reserves, must have hurt the US ruling class to be so close before they got their knuckles rapped.

Posted by: Roegr | May 3 2022 5:52 utc | 160

Posted by: circumspect | May 2 2022 19:16 utc | 24

>> "Anatoly Matios, stated that Ukraine had lost 2,700 men in the Donbass: 891 from illnesses, 318 from road accidents, 177 from other accidents, 175 from poisonings (alcohol, drugs), 172 from careless handling of weapons, 101 from breaches of security regulations, 228 from murders and 615 from suicides".

> "No battle related casualties? Seems very odd. Like the gang that couldn't shoot straight. Plenty of drunk driving and drunken sol"

The following source indicates another total for the years 2014-2016. Note: this is two years earlier than the quote above. It indicates that killed in action would be 2x the number of "accidents" at least according to their own statistics.

"As reported, Chief of Staff of Ukraine's Armed Forces Viktor Muzhenko said Dec. 6 that 3,064 members of security agencies including 2,636 servicemen were killed since the beginning of the armed conflict in the Donbas. 2,148 of them were killed in action."

"According to Main Military Prosecutor Anatoly Matios, the non-combat losses of the Ukrainian Armed Forces amounted to 1,294 persons"

Posted by: John Dowser | May 3 2022 5:52 utc | 161

Posted by: Vollhonk | May 2 2022 20:16 utc | 41

Wet feet. 10-mile, loaded training marches. This 40th ID Infantry 11b Veteran can testify...up until age 30, that is. That's when I went full-admin!

Posted by: ERing46Z | May 3 2022 5:54 utc | 162

Earlier in this thread I asked about news sites re Mykolaiav and Odessa and there was no response until b's general query.

For what it's worth, previous posts have pointed out that the taking of Mykolaiav has been difficult owing to the formidable dafences (a la Kharkiv) that have been set up in preparation -- apparently the Odessa defences are even more daunting, making its assault a dangerous, life-threatening proposition ... an attack from the sea could be disastrous as the waters are mined and the shore defences are extremely-well dug in, so that a beach storming would be very costly in RF lives.

It would seem prudent to wait for the Donbass conflict to finish and then to use the additional weaponry and military personnel for a ground attack from the east and north in an encirclement maneuver.

Posted by: chet380 | May 3 2022 6:01 utc | 163

@DakotaRog | May 3 2022 5:26 utc | 156

... many "good ole boys" are just itching for Antifa to go nuts if SCOTUS does over turn Roe v Wade and kick abortion back to the states.
2022 05 03 The Abortion Distraction

Posted by: Norwegian | May 3 2022 6:05 utc | 164

148 - I was diagnosed with hypertension when I was about 35. A bit on the young side, but it is predominantly a condition of the middle-aged and old. Twenty-year olds, the typical active military age, rarely have it. My guess is that if it is a problem in the AFU it is because they have elderly conscripts.

Posted by: Waldorf | May 3 2022 6:12 utc | 165

Posted by: karlof1 | May 2 2022 21:06 utc | 51

Excellent review, and I bet Werner will have a lot to highlight regarding the WEF's Great Reset as the pandemic jab death rate eventually plays out in full view.

Posted by: ERing46Z | May 3 2022 6:15 utc | 166

@ Biswapriya Purkayast #154

“ radiation signature of American nuclear weapons, not Russian”

Not necessarily. The US has Soviet-origin fissionable material, such as that recovered by the CIA from the nuclear tipped torpedos in the K-129 submarine. Given other lost weapons and materials it would not be surprising if there were other caches of material that got freed up in the chaos of the early 1990s.

Posted by: Billb | May 3 2022 6:17 utc | 167

Wonder why the Beskid tunnel isn't hit. A 100 trains a day hauling weapons

It is hard to fathom the rationale for these things but: wait until the destination points are identified and send a fast technical device to erase each arsenal overnight.

I assume the Russian intelligence gathering to be highly refined after all the preparation plus the gaming of military strategy to be fairly refined so we shall see what transpires.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | May 3 2022 6:18 utc | 168

@164 Norwegian

To go to war, you need a united nation.

If the streets are in chaos come summer, tell me how easy it would be to convince a divided nation to come together for Ukraine?

It is an extremely important cultural issue in America. It is very important as it pertains to any united response or consent to a war abroad.

It matters.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | May 3 2022 6:20 utc | 169

In the Belgian Dutch-language TV programme 'De Afspraak' (the appointment), a lively debate took place last night between two Leuven University professors: historian Idisbald Goddeeris and internationally renowned economist Paul De Grauwe. De Grauwe feared Russian expansionism and saw the Russians already in Brussels, Goddeeris insisted on de-escalation and understanding of Russian concerns.

The debate matched well with my new article "How our opinion about the war in Ukraine is being distorted": wereld- in-ukraine-is-deformed/

If you want to read this Dutch piece in any other language, you can easily translate it by clicking on the Google translation box in the top right corner.

Posted by: Paul-Robert | May 3 2022 6:21 utc | 170

slow RF advances. not at all. 8 years of fortified defences in donbass. this was all bypassed at first (why ukie shelling was still occuring). no one was complaining as RF easily ran over any defences elswehere. now its drone recon and with scouts ,infantry sits back to bring up artillery to destroy hardened defences, then moves in for the mop up. theres a huge cauldron forming behind donbass, one main road that left and soon open fire zones in that where retreats or re supply will be targeted. i think the only reason its slow is its methodical with least casualties scenario, village by village , house to house, but otherwise with no air power ground troops stand no chance and will become earth soon, can only say stop reading western msm , putin has seven diseases daily , every general has been shot , was out of fuel and missiles last week.
meanwhile psychotic lizzard truss thinks nato will bring peace and security to small pacific islands , god help these folk , they must know drip feeding weapons into ukraine is useless, im waiting to any stupid poland romania move to spread conflict where russia finally targets nato bases command centres and flights coming in . so far its been very very restrained by RF

Posted by: hankster | May 3 2022 6:32 utc | 171

Paul-Robert | May 3 2022 6:21 utc | 170
„.... De Grauwe feared Russian expansionism...“ The easiest to do thing is to compare the situation in 1992 with that of today. Just let a primary school pupil compare 2 maps vocally. And then spread the result. This whole „Russia expansionsm“ thing is like the Indian rope trick.

Posted by: Hausmeister | May 3 2022 6:32 utc | 172

Sunday, on 60 Minutes, Scott Pelley, CBS correspondent, interviewed Ukrainians in Odessa who had sought refuge from fighting in Mariupol and who described Russian forces as sub-humans, expressing the hope that Russia be razed to the ground. This abomination is being expressed on 60 Minutes! The acclaimed news magazine program is distributed internationally, and as per a Reuters piece I read, to apparently 50 countries. It’s on Facebook, Twitter and can be viewed on YouTube and the CBS webpage. That Episode: Harvest of War will be seen world-wide and is extremely damaging for Russia.

How many people know about RT's news series: Donbass: I'm alive!? Here's one short segment.

How many countries and news outlets are carrying this series? Is there other investigative reporting such as this being undertaken by Russian journalists? If so, how far and wide are such reports being distributed?

Are they dubbed, sub-titled and shared with other News Outlets in different countries and continents around the world? Are world-renown foreign outlets, example, Al-Jazeera, being given access to film segments that humanize the Russian military? Russian forces are distributing bread for God's sake! They're distributing food and water. What about conducting interviews with refugees ending up in Russia? I viewed one interview yesterday on Southfront. A young Cuban woman described her harrowing experience at the hands of Ukie forces in Mariupol. It was very compelling. Everyone world-wide should be made aware of Russia's humanitarian efforts in this operation so the other side stop owning the humanitarian and human interest narrative.

One more point I'd like to make regards Odessa. Before military operations move onto Odessa, Putin needs to get ahead of the problem of what to do about the grain back-up in the Port of Odessa. If he ignores this problem, the U.S. will use the issue as an excuse to put its ships in the Black Sea. Putin must negotiate some kind of deal on grain shipments so Russia is not accused of keeping aid from impoverished third-world countries. If there is grain stored in the port of Odessa; it should be shipped out to countries that really need it. As far as the U.N. World Food Programme having lost U.S. $10 billion so far this year; instead of the U.S. supplying billions in weapons to Ukraine to fuel war and kill Russians, Biden should redirect those funds to the WFP to save lives!

The issue of grain destined for third world countries is a problem that Putin needs to address before the U.S. seizes on it to Russia's detriment.

millions of tons of grain stuck

Posted by: Circe | May 3 2022 6:37 utc | 173

Posted by: Billb | May 3 2022 6:17 utc | 167

Not necessarily. The US has Soviet-origin fissionable material, such as that recovered by the CIA from the nuclear tipped torpedos in the K-129 submarine.

Is it really that easy to reprocess the salvaged material without "tainting" or destroying the signature?

Posted by: Arch Bungle | May 3 2022 7:01 utc | 174

@156 DakotaRog

Hi, friend. God bless you all there in SD.

I don't think you will see much of any scuffles in Sioux Falls or Rapid City. But I know y'all don't put up with any shit in your state.

I desperately tried to get my wife anxious to move out there. But so far she hasn't bit.

One of my parents was from SD. Grandma German and Welsh Grandpa. Wonderful people. Wonderful place. Was out in the Black Hills recently for a fam reunion.


Posted by: NemesisCalling | May 3 2022 7:26 utc | 175

I do hope that all foreign-born mercenaries captured in the Ukraine during the SMO are convicted of crimes against humanity and speedily hanged. Their lives are worthless, a declaration I don't make but is made self-evident by their raping and pillaging of the people and towns of the Donbass and greater Novorossiya. The hangings should be completed in public, televised, and the recordings distributed to the sub-human parasites occupying Western political offices - a demonstration of their eventual fate.

The entire West at this point in time is defined by narcissism, psychopathy, and an unrelenting mentality of totalitarianism. May God grant its complete suffocation and erasure from history.

Posted by: Ornos | May 3 2022 7:27 utc | 176


Read your post again and realized you never said you were from SD. In any case, take care friend.

Posted by: NemesisCalling | May 3 2022 7:29 utc | 177

Posted by: Roger | May 3 2022 0:12 utc | 100

Germany murdered 3,000,000 Soviet POWs by starvation - some reduced to cannibalism - and execution. There are even mass-graves in West Germany - with no ID documentationäberstätten_in_Deutschland

like this one in Bad Orb, Hesseäberstätte_Wegscheide.jpg



Posted by: Paul Greenwood | May 3 2022 7:45 utc | 178

If the Ukrainian army were in such bad shape (no morale, no ammunition, no skill) why does it take the Russians so long to advance.

“How did you go bankrupt?"
Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.”

Ukraine is the size of Afghanistan - 5 times size of UK - Russia controls about 20% of the land area and most of the production capacity.

So if the Russians can occupy an area the size of the UK in such a short time holding down an Army 3 times size of UK it seems pretty clear no NATO Army could offer much resistance either

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | May 3 2022 7:53 utc | 179

If the Ukrainian army were in such bad shape (no morale, no ammunition, no skill) why does it take the Russians so long to advance.

“How did you go bankrupt?"
Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.”

Ukraine is the size of Afghanistan - 5 times size of UK - Russia controls about 20% of the land area and most of the production capacity.

So if the Russians can occupy an area the size of the UK in such a short time holding down an Army 3 times size of UK it seems pretty clear no NATO Army could offer much resistance either

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | May 3 2022 7:55 utc | 180

Paul, you forgot to note that Russia pretty much (also) controls 100% of the airspace.

It's a military undertaking for the ages.

Posted by: Seer | May 3 2022 7:56 utc | 181

Like it takes a smart western brain or something to figure out how much fuel, food and ammunition you need

Posted by: Jimmy | May 3 2022 0:54 utc | 111

Please consider that these western brains might be projecting.

I am not sure that these western brains can figure something like that out. They maybe are able to figure out how much their family needs for a weekend, but I sincerely doubt they are able to generalize from there. Mathematics doesn't seem to be a strong point. Neither is logistics.

Posted by: Martina | May 3 2022 8:04 utc | 182

In the Great War trenches on the Western front were often waterlogged, however the British army regarded incidents of trench foot as an index of morale.

Posted by: Rob | May 3 2022 8:22 utc | 183

@Posted by: Paul Greenwood | May 3 2022 7:45 utc | 179

Yes, a history so intentionally "forgotten" by the West. The Russians took approx. 3 million Wermacht POWs and 1/3 died, which is not as awful as it appears given the conditions at the time with respect to inadequate supplies of food etc. even for the Russian population.

The Germans intentionally starved and worked to death the 3 million+ Russian POWs, in great contrast to their treatment of other Allied POWs. Nobody talks about a German holocaust against the Russians, but given the intentional killing of 3 million+ prisoners, together with the widespread killing of Soviet civilians and, plus 800,000 in the siege of Leningrad, there should be. Nearly 20 million Russian civilians died due to conflict and famine and disease caused by the conflict. With military deaths its about 30 million, 15% of the population.

Posted by: Roger | May 3 2022 8:31 utc | 184

I'm going to re-post this from the last thread. I'm an hour and a half into the 2 and a half hour Duran live stream from Monday. This is a must see!

Andrei Martyanov and Gonzalo Lira discuss the Ukraine situation. Gonzalo comes with very good questions, and Andrei clobbers them. Alex and Alexander mostly stay silent and let the two work on each other. This is excellent. Everyone needs to see this. Yes, it's 2-1/2 hours. Take the time! You will learn something.

Special Military Operation (Live) w_Andrei Martyanov & Gonzalo Lira

Also Gonzalo has a new Youtube channel, linked to from The Duran.

Gonzalo Lira II

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 3 2022 8:32 utc | 185

Posted by: bevin | May 3 2022 1:29 utc | 120

Language is the paramount trait among all those traits that make us human.

All attempts to forbid languages are intrinsically evil, nothing short of beastly, and should be opposed by all means necessary.

Posted by: Arganthonios | May 3 2022 8:38 utc | 186

Could this be the defining quote of this century?

"If You Won't Speak to Lavrov, You'll Speak to Shoigu".

President VV Putin.

Posted by: Paul | May 3 2022 8:55 utc | 187

Posted by: Sakineh Bagoom | May 3 2022 3:54 utc | 143

The f**k has ultra-corrupt bourgeois rule to do with abortions?

You know what happens when abortions are outlawed?

I'll tell you what happens.

Rich ladies discreetly fly abroad to get them done somewhere else.

Poor ladies get stuck raising children that nobody wanted, in bad economic conditions, who then become more underpaid workers and literal cannon fodder for the same bourgeois fucks that can sidestep the law. That in the good cases. In the bad cases they die in botched backalley jobs, or of poisoning, have their reproductive tract ruined, or get incarcerated for refusing to bring online one potential servant more among millions.

The prejudice against abortion is nothing more than lopsided population control by the rich wrapped in a thin wafer of religious bleeding-heart superstition, or at best a misguided population-building policy.

If your religious convictions forbid you from participating in abortions, that's reasonable; but they're YOUR religious convictions and their jurisdiction stops at your skin and your house, they're not and should not be binding for anybody else.

If humans were oviparous the entire polemic would be moot, a simple omelette would solve the problem.

Posted by: Arganthonios | May 3 2022 9:20 utc | 188

Whoohoo! My bro Lavrov gonna feel the fire of the anti-semitism Commisars!

JERUSALEM, May 2 (Reuters) - Israel lambasted Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Monday for claiming Adolf Hitler had Jewish origins, saying it was an "unforgivable" falsehood that debased the horrors of the Nazi Holocaust.

Leaders from several Western nations denounced the foreign minister's comments and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy accused Russia of having forgotten the lessons of World War Two.

In a sign of sharply deteriorating relations with Moscow, the Israeli foreign ministry summoned the Russian ambassador and demanded an apology.


Somehow I don't feel that much like a lone conspiratorial nut anymore. Time to break out the popcorn ...

Posted by: Arch Bungle | May 3 2022 9:26 utc | 189

Posted by: Arganthonios | May 3 2022 9:20 utc | 189

That last sentence was excellent. Well done. For me the the entire issue boils down to "this is what one gets when one is obsessed with religion and morality." I'm not even sure population control enters into it, except for bleeding-heart conservationists like Paul Ehrlich, who was basically a Nazi intent on depopulating the world like Thanos in "The Avengers" movies. And that's not a joke - read "The Population Bomb:. Complete pseudo-science. He wanted to get rid of - at that time - something five or six billion people in order to save 100 million from starving to death by the year 2000 - which never happened anyway.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 3 2022 9:27 utc | 190

There are lot of videos from Donbass front, where Ukie trenches are riddled with hundreds of craters and burn out trees around them.

If Russians wanted to take it, they could push trough them with assault without a problem (but witch casualties, of course).

But Russians don't want to do that, they are not in a hurry. Let the arty work, Ukies die, reinforcements from new mobilization fill those trenches, die again, rinse and repeat. Why should Russians go chase enemy in cities with own and civilian casualties when they can just stay where they are and keep firing arty.

Posted by: Abe | May 3 2022 9:47 utc | 191

@Arch Bungle at 190

If I were Lavrov, I’d tell the Israelis that I certainly don’t take lectures from a government that practices genocide against the Palestinians and who, by their extra-judicial killings of personnel calling out Israel, breach international law. In short, I’d tell the Israelis to go and fuck themselves.

Posted by: Vragtes | May 3 2022 9:52 utc | 192

Somehow I don't feel that much like a lone conspiratorial nut anymore. Time to break out the popcorn ...

Posted by: Arch Bungle | May 3 2022 9:26 utc | 190

Yes, that looks like it could get very entertaining. Lavrov will make mincemeat of them, saying all the unsayable things.

Posted by: Bemildred | May 3 2022 9:52 utc | 193

Fog of war.

- Canadian general tries to get out of Azovstal and captured.

- Lavrov head to head with zionists, being jew does not preclude being a nazi. Truth hurts.

- Lavrov head to head with Draghi, interview with Italian channel requested by the channel.

- Ukrainian ambassador in Germany calls Scholtz offended liverwurst.

- And yes, Ukraine on front page wearing thin so lets talk about Roe&wade

Posted by: Paco | May 3 2022 10:16 utc | 194

When asked to predict the duration of the conflict between the west and their opponents, Michael Hudson answered 30 years

If that is taken as a realistic estimate then it is in agreement with the west's motive being to avoid a total nuclear war and to wear the russians down. Then it would not be in the interest of the west to allow any succesfull quick strike on the Donbass with well-prepared troops. The west would have had a motive to set it up to partly fail, which is the case. But not to allow it to end. At every step of the development they have a motive to reassure the Russians that victory is within reach while the battles continue to cost the russians losses.
The russian strategy seems to counter that aim so both sides seem to be acting rationally. The west is evil but the strategy isnt mad. Both sides are patient. The Us military is very realistic about the consequences of loosing that patience.
On the other hand evacuation plans of ... now seem to be rendered easier. I better not be the wise guy here.

Posted by: petergrfstrm | May 3 2022 10:16 utc | 195

#---The reality is the West is unable to supply either the quantity or quality of weapons that will make any difference to the outcome of this conflict. The sooner they abandon that wishful thinking the better it will be. Europe's economy is on a knife edge right now. All the pretending and bluster in the world wont save it.

Posted by: nook | May 2 2022 18:11 utc | 10

Nooo- not when the scrap-metal marked is sky-rocketing! This will clean up every back-yard in the whole god damn world.
And it will deplete the already rather un-armed forces of Europe.

Let us continue to paint ourselves - not even in a corner, but in the center of the floor. We have to notice at some point.

This is a spiritual battle, more than a material one. For me who don't think death's final, these solider are in a safer spot, than most of us.
When facing death, you are forced to review what you are fighting for.

Posted by: Anne B | May 3 2022 10:21 utc | 196

Well as to Hilter having some Jewish roots, that is hardly news. I grew up with this theory, having been told it was probably true by my father, some 60 years ago. The way it was put to me when I asked questions, was that some people are so embarrassed by their origins that they go overboard in hostility. I was also told that Hilter along with most of the other 1930s dictators had all had very difficult relationship with father/stepfather, which may have generated hostility. Pop psychology I guess 1960s.

Posted by: watcher | May 3 2022 10:31 utc | 197


Did you see this? A Canadian general holed up at Mariupol was taken.

Posted by: Lila Rajiva | May 3 2022 10:32 utc | 198

But Russians don't want to do that, they are not in a hurry. Let the arty work, Ukies die, reinforcements from new mobilization fill those trenches, die again, rinse and repeat. Why should Russians go chase enemy in cities with own and civilian casualties when they can just stay where they are and keep firing arty.

Posted by: Abe | May 3 2022 9:47 utc | 192

Well said. Since the objective is de-militarization and de-nazification, the name of the game is attrition.

How long will the Zelinsky government continue to think this is a good investment of its military assets?

For the Russians, it is what they came to do.

Posted by: Bemildred | May 3 2022 10:41 utc | 199

Posted by: Lila Rajiva | May 3 2022 10:32 utc | 199

Unfortunately they reference an alleged biolab. This makes the tweet suspicious. Until I hear confirmation from Russia, I'd treat it as suspect. That the General may be there is quite possible, however. Apparently he did go to Ukraine.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 3 2022 10:46 utc | 200

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