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June 16, 2022

Ukraine Open Thread 2022-88

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

The open thread for other issues is here.

Posted by b on June 16, 2022 at 12:34 UTC | Permalink

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The Fascist-Zionist-Capitalist Marionette government resistance is weakening, all of Ukraine will be called back into the bosom of Mother Russia within weeks!

Posted by: Noam A. Larkey | Jun 16 2022 12:40 utc | 1

from Military dot com
Two US Vets Reportedly Captured by Russian Troops in Ukraine as Families Scramble to Learn More

Two U.S. veterans were reportedly captured by Russian troops in Ukraine last week, with their families and lawmakers now working to find out what happened and whether they are in Russian custody.
The U.S. State Department confirmed that it is aware of media reports that two American citizens and veterans who were volunteers in Ukraine have been captured., in speaking to government officials and family members, has been able to confirm that both men, Alexander Drueke, 39, and Andy Huynh, 27, were veterans who traveled to Ukraine in April. Their families now say both have since gone missing.
Lois Drueke, Alexander's mother, told that her son was an Army veteran of eight years, left the military as a staff sergeant, and volunteered to train Ukrainians starting in April. reached out to the Army to independently verify Drueke's service history but did not immediately hear back, although Drueke's mother did share photos showing her son in uniform. Lois Drueke said that her son was part of the Army's Chemical Corps, having served two tours in Iraq."​​Alex did not reenlist after his second tour in Iraq," she said. "He came home with severe PTSD, and he has been searching for a purpose in life."
Local media in Huynh's home state of Alabama reported that he was a Marine veteran who left to fight in Ukraine in April after seeing images of Ukrainian teenagers battling Russian forces.
. . .Claire Finkelstein, the founder and academic director of the Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law, told in an email Wednesday that, assuming a former U.S. service member was taking orders from the Ukrainian military, wearing their uniforms, and carrying their arms openly, they would be "entitled to full POW treatment under the Geneva Conventions.". . . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jun 16 2022 13:15 utc | 2

then, perhaps, all media will turn to China's SMO declaration, announced by China's leader:

Posted by: ERing46Z | Jun 16 2022 13:15 utc | 3

Talk about a boomerang. Gas to Europe gets progressively shut down due to maintenance on compressors that is blocked by Anglo European sanctions. Euro economy goes down, the US economy goes down. Deutsche bank goes down, the US banks will go down.
US/UK juvenile delinquents thought they could march on Moscow...

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jun 16 2022 13:18 utc | 4

"The Fascist-Zionist-Capitalist Marionette government resistance is weakening, all of Ukraine will be called back into the bosom of Mother Russia within weeks!"

So Russia can pay all their bills and rebuild their 'country' for them? While still under sanctions? I don't think so. Looks like you haven't being paying much attention to what Moscow has been saying. Or even what NATO has made abundantly clear recently.

Posted by: Sailing by | Jun 16 2022 13:20 utc | 5

Modern war is about logistics, and for that an economy is required.
Until today the list on the left side of that page was titled Ukraine. Now Ukraine has gone in the black hole and the list is titled "Economy".

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jun 16 2022 13:29 utc | 6

Ok so you went to kill the evil Russians because you are on the side of the Good and the Righteous whether on Afghan safari or mucking about in Iraq. Now you are a sorry SOB languishing in a DPR holding tank. What did you expect? Did you really believe those myths of invincibility? Did you swallow whole the fairy tale of Inept Russian Forces?! Well now you know the dangers of believing your own propaganda, or maybe it was designed for your kind in the first place...? No matter, your fate will not be effected either way by these fibs.

Posted by: Chevrus | Jun 16 2022 13:32 utc | 7

From IntelSlava

🇷🇺❗From Pushilin's statements at SPIEF 2022.

1. A referendum on the entry of the DPR into Russia will be held in the republic after the end of the NWO. The republic plans to become part of the Russian Federation as a separate subject of the federation.

2. Due to the supply of Western weapons to Ukraine, the DPR army will not stop at the borders of the republic. However, the troops of the DPR are already involved in the Zaporozhye direction.

3. There are no grounds for pardoning foreign mercenaries convicted in the DPR. There are no negotiations on their exchange. The deadline for appealing the death penalty is early July.

4. Ukrainian prisoners of war who did not take part in hostilities will not be released. Their fate will be decided after the completion of the NWO. Quite logical, given the mobilization in Ukraine.

5. All Russian cities must be liberated, including Odessa. Zelensky should be brought before an international tribunal.

6. The hope was expressed for the completion of the NWO by the end of 2022. There are serious doubts that the war will end in 2022.

7. It is still impossible to calculate the total amount of damage to the DPR from the actions of Ukraine. More than 1,500 houses need to be repaired in Mariupol alone.

Posted by: Down South | Jun 16 2022 13:36 utc | 8

I deeply apologize to MoA and mr. Andrei Martyanov for spreading the 'hear-say' on possible Russian mobilisation and China goes SMO on Taiwan, soon.
I only thought that it is an interesting but non-confirmed rumour as perceived by rather accurate Military Summary host. I mean host named Dima is Byelorussian, seems that he is well-educated in military matters, probably he also listens to all the Russian/Byelorussian channels, radio and TV that we cannot hear and reach. But I agree with mr. Martyanov, concerning mobilisation, if SMO plan is going well, do not change it.
But with my limited military understanding, current RF troops are not enough to progress on a such vast terrain to hold and secure it. Also if they have more troops and equipment I think they would go quicker in certain if not all areas.
Yes, losses will rise on RF side, but it is what it is. It is just how one wants to do it - cheap, slow and with almost static massive fire-power, or quick, expensive and all-in.
But I am probably wrong on that, as well. And I really hate war. Hope is that Taiwan will just stay put and quiet.

mr. Andrei Martyanov wrote on his blog:

Now per "mobilization" BS being spread by all kinds of fanboys, even if "pro-Russian" resources on the UTube and elsewhere.

1. Being "pro-Russian" absolutely does not equate to being militarily competent, let alone being mobilization specialist--it is the level of decisions made at the highest military-political level, which brings us to the next point...

2. And why exactly should Russia mobilize, when forces involved in SMO achieve their objectives, especially against the background of favorite Ukie (and UK) "tactics" of using civilians as human shield? The "argument" about alleged China landing in Taiwan is altogether risible.

Those "analytical" resources which grow like mushrooms after the rain on all kinds of platforms in 99 cases out of 100 are fanboys and military porn masturbators trying to promote their "operational" fantasies as facts. Including by spreading outlandish rumors and "concepts".

Posted by: whirlX | Jun 16 2022 14:07 utc | 9

from CNBC
The West’s unity over Ukraine could be starting to crack, just as Russia’s invasion gains ground
-- Western unity over the war in Ukraine is becoming more vulnerable as the conflict drags on.
-- One poll across Europe found a majority of people want an end to the war as soon as possible, even if it means territorial losses for Ukraine.
-- There is an increasing level of concern among the public in Europe, and beyond, about rising living costs.

There are increasing signs that Western unity over the war in Ukraine could be starting to crack as the conflict drags on and leaders face public discontent over rampant inflation and the cost-of-living crisis.
There are widespread concerns over how long the war could continue, with some strategists saying it has all the hallmarks of a war of attrition where no side “wins” and the losses and damage inflicted by both sides, over a protracted and prolonged period, are immense.
The U.S., U.K. and Eastern Europe appear staunch in their position that Russia must not be able to succeed or “win” in Ukraine by carving out (or reclaiming, as Moscow sees it) swathes of territory for itself, saying that could have major global geopolitical repercussions. . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jun 16 2022 14:08 utc | 10

Let them LIE!

American media Lies won't stop Russia from taking ALL of Ukraine

Posted by: Dean Oneil | Jun 16 2022 14:14 utc | 11

from CATO Institute, 2020:

War and GDP per Capita

While wars are destructive of physical and human capital, the impact of war on GDP per capita is unclear. This ambiguity is fundamentally due to the way national income accounting deals with killing people and destroying things during war. Producing weapons and munitions is counted positively, while killing people and destroying things is not counted at all.

On the one hand, war can increase GDP per capita by reducing unemployment and by shifting people from family formation and other nonmarket activities into wartime production.2 On the other hand, even with the failure to account for the destruction of physical and human capital or the loss of nonmarket activity, war can lower GDP per capita by reducing labor and total factor productivity through the destruction of existing physical and human capital and by reducing investment in new physical and human capital. War can also reduce GDP per capita by reducing gains from both domestic and foreign trade. . .here

Looks like war is bad for the economy! And: "It's the economy, stupid." (Bill Clinton's slogan in 1992)

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jun 16 2022 14:17 utc | 12

So the West is tiring of the game they started, but Russia isn't. It must play out to the end.


@whirlX | Jun 16 2022 14:07 utc | 9

You reported what a source said. We will see what develops over the next couple of weeks. Andrei Martyanov expresses his opinions freely. He is not god, but offers his perspective. Several important Russian sources have started talking about Odessa. Kharkov and Sumy have also been mentioned because of their proximity to the Russian border and maintaining its security. I personally don't believe Russia has enough forces available in Ukraine to take on these additional tasks - even at the current pace and scale of operations over a period of time, but this also depends on the state of the UAF and it willingness and ability to fight. As for China - they will move when they believe it will be to their advantage, whenever that may be. There could be some advantage to move while the Russian SMO is active. No idea what their actual calculus is.

Posted by: the pessimist | Jun 16 2022 14:36 utc | 13

roland was a warrior
From the Land of the Midnight Sun
With a Thompson gun for hire
Fighting to be done
The deal was made in Denmark
On a dark and stormy day
So he set out for ukrainia
To join the bloody fray

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Posted by: norman wisdom | Jun 16 2022 14:43 utc | 14

Greetings from Moscow! I wrote this today.

The “new” war in Ukraine has been a non-stop toy commercial. It’s not enough for corporate news outlets to simply say Russia is losing and Ukraine is winning, every success story has to be tied to a product. Drones, missiles, starlink satellites, and more. It’s like four months of saying it’s good to give cocaine and cigarettes to babies. Sure, the tobacco industry is willing to lie about the supposed benefits of their products, surely the weapons industry wouldn’t do that, right?

Posted by: Ian Kummer | Jun 16 2022 14:46 utc | 15

US funding biolabs coincides with infections surge in Donbass, says Russian top brass
Igor Kirillov recalled that in the NATO governing documents tula
Something fishy going on.
MOSCOW, June 16. /TASS/. The Pentagon's funding of Ukrainian biological projects is marked by numerous cases of infectious diseases among servicemen and Donbass residents, Chief of Russian Radiation, Chemical, and Biological Protection Force Igor Kirillov said at a briefing on Thursday.

"It is characteristic that since 2015, the beginning of the Pentagon's large-scale financing of Ukrainian projects, numerous cases of infectious diseases have been recorded among servicemen as well as residents of the Lugansk and Donetsk People's Republics," he said.

The general cited a report by the DPR Health Ministry, in which it is noted that "in 2016, the incidence of tularemia has increased by 9.5 times compared to 2007. The morbidity structure also showed distinctive features, including an increase in the number of servicemen among the ill."

He recalled that in the NATO governing documents (NATO Planning Guide for the Estimation of Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) Casualties) tularemia is regarded as one of the priority biological agents. This particular pathogen was used in the alliance's military drills at training grounds in Sweden, which was officially confirmed in 2012.

Posted by: Eoin Clancy | Jun 16 2022 14:47 utc | 16

MOSCOW, June 16./TASS/. The Russian Defense Ministry has found insufficient the explanations provided by the United States on biological activities in Ukraine, since they do not give answers to a number of important questions, Chief of Russia’s Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Protection Troops Igor Kirillov told a briefing on Thursday.

"The ‘explanations’ provided by the US don’t have answers to the questions we posed - why was the work carried out by order of the Pentagon, and its subject matter was not consistent with actual problems of Ukrainian health care? What for did officers from the US military agency participate in biological research in Ukraine, while the work was carried out in secrecy with restricted access of Ukrainian specialists to information and premises?" Kirillov asked.

There are no answers either to the questions why strains of pathogenic microorganisms - potential biological weapons agents, and biomaterials of Ukrainian citizens were exported from Ukraine without clearly declared purposes. Why are the US officials, including Under Secretary of State Victoria Nuland, so worried that that the results of the US Department of Defense activities in Ukraine and materials in the bio laboratories may get into the hands of Russian specialists?

In addition, the question remained unanswered as to why the US and Ukraine keep quiet about cooperation in the military-biological sphere in international reporting under the Biological Weapons Convention, and why the US has been blocking the development of its verification mechanism since 2001, Kirillov said. The briefing focused on the results of analysis of the documents regarding Washington’s military-biological activity in Ukraine.

It's hard to know if my 2 posts are just Russian propaganda but regardless of that we already have Nuland on record saying these labs do exist. What troubles me is how many more secret labs do the US have in Europe and around the world and what the hell are they producing in them?

Posted by: Eoin Clancy | Jun 16 2022 14:57 utc | 17

@ the pessimist | Jun 16 2022 14:36 utc | 13

No idea what their actual calculus is.

Nobody knows what Sino-Rus plans are, really.
But, I am sure both will stay polite to the last moment until they suddenly do not.
But let us wait a bit, as disinfo and a global positioning is in a huge swing.
I am not so convinced that their calculus is on the same page. Maybe it overlaps, but it is not united. For now.

To take the other parts outside of Donbas is probably a very necessary action to protect it.
I am not so sure on the Odesa plans, but I can agree that the northern border should be buffered.

Also, to me is a bit odd that many people say that RF should or might take the whole Ukraine. But currently, with such limited RF force, I seriously doubt that it is on the plate now and is definitely undoable.

Posted by: whirlX | Jun 16 2022 14:57 utc | 18

Civilians who have escaped from the Azot plant have revealed that the plant is full of foreign mercenaries, it sounds as though its another Azovstal in the making.

Posted by: Republicofscotland | Jun 16 2022 14:57 utc | 19

We shall see tomorrow regarding the rumours I guess.

The Twitter user "ArmchairW" (he is a former US artillery officer) posted an informative thread on the nature of modern battle theory and why there are no "game changers":

The addendum by the user "John Smith" is also well worth reading and is important to realise why Russia has difficulties intercepting weapons shipments, and why UAF lacks ability to use NATO systems effectively;

Posted by: moaobserver | Jun 16 2022 15:06 utc | 20

@ norman wisdom | Jun 16 2022 14:43 utc | 14


I don't do extraction, but there are other jobs maybe I could do
> Security Driver – San Francisco, California
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Posted by: Don Bacon | Jun 16 2022 15:06 utc | 21

@Republicofscotland | Jun 16 2022 14:57 utc | 19

At Azovstal there were various rumors for a month, and in the end we learned very little about the actual situation there and who all surrendered (or was killed). Perhaps this will be the same.

Posted by: the pessimist | Jun 16 2022 15:06 utc | 22

Today is grandstanding day. Macron and co. want to make Ukraine an EU candidate. Ukrainian officials still talking about capturing Crimea. The clown show continues.

Posted by: rockstar | Jun 16 2022 15:15 utc | 23

The Pentagon "Fact Sheet on WMD Threat Reduction Efforts with Ukraine, Russia and Other Former Soviet Union Countries" is here

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jun 16 2022 15:15 utc | 24

Donetsk shelling of civilian areas by UAF:

What is more shameful?

A- Western world completely ignoring the fact Ukraine's Gov't shells its own (not for long..) cities, with zero military targets or gain to be had. 100% pure butt-hurt terrorism.

B- Russia's inability to even attempt to address this after 3 MONTHS of war.
This part of the 'operation' does not feel particularly 'special', considering the optics of using the pretext of LDNR needing 'protection', and then doing bugger all about actually protecting the most densely populated area under constant attack.

Posted by: Et Tu | Jun 16 2022 15:23 utc | 25

Dean Oneil | Jun 16 2022 14:14 utc | 11;
Thanks for the link. I enjoyed reading the article.

Posted by: DutchZ | Jun 16 2022 15:30 utc | 26

@ whirlX | Jun 16 2022 14:07 utc | 9

i appreciate your comments and you have done nothing to apologize for.. we all speculate.. speculation isn't fact and to draw a conclusion off speculation is further removed for any fact.. this is exactly what the bozo @ 24 et tu does while knowing fuck all on the ground... and they aren't apologizing either... all good whirlX... cheers..

Posted by: james | Jun 16 2022 15:42 utc | 27

And Macron is doing this in the last few days of an important election in France?
It is hard to believe that he does not have some superficially attractive 'rabbit' in his hat.
All the indications are that ramping up war in Ukraine will not be attractive to French voters.
It would be interesting to learn what the NUPES responses are, and particularly what Melenchon has to say.

Posted by: bevin | Jun 16 2022 15:44 utc | 28

Posted by: bevin | Jun 16 2022 15:44 utc | 27

A parliament blocking his trials to get Ukraine into EU may give him a useful excuse. Why Scholz is completely mad eludes me.

Posted by: TomD | Jun 16 2022 15:57 utc | 29

That 'Fact' sheet @23 would be funny, but way too many people think it is true for it to be funny. 'Fact' should be put in quotes on that one.

Posted by: horatio | Jun 16 2022 16:00 utc | 30

What I don't get is that the European War leaders, Scholz, Macron and Draghi (I've no idea who the 4th,the tall tit pictured to Zelensky's far left is), who signed off on WMD's to Ukraine were not targeted with a precision missile strike in Kiev.

If this was 1942 and Hitler, Mussolini and Other Nazi leaders were in Kiev marketing the war they'd be a main target, so why not these Supreme Commanders-In-Chief?

No permissions should be granted for these elite warmongers to fly in and out of a war zone.

I see this as a Russian failure! As per usual it's only the working class fodder who follow orders who run the gauntlet.

Posted by: WTFUD | Jun 16 2022 16:04 utc | 31
Mariupol today, 16.06.2022. Food products, price of fuel, and where the girl lived before. Still the voice is nice, people smiling. Interestingly, Pb95 is 47 rubles/litre (at ~60rubels/USD, 0.78USD/litre ). very much cheaper than in the EU. In Poland for example, it is equivalent to 1.82USD/litre. In Germany the fuel prices are even higher.

Posted by: ostro | Jun 16 2022 16:08 utc | 32

Posted by: WTFUD | Jun 16 2022 16:04 utc | 30
Why should Russia even worry about those 3+1 stooges? Let them come and talk about things that cannot be "given" and go away. Nothing much happens, except maybe Ukraine won't be there by autumn...😏

It is a SMO, a police-like operation, not a war.

Posted by: ostro | Jun 16 2022 16:12 utc | 33

Museum honoring the battle for Kiev in 1943:

Hopefully there will be a peaceful transition before we witness this again.

Posted by: the pessimist | Jun 16 2022 16:13 utc | 34

Ukraine will capitulate in autumn, the probabilities are high.

Right now, the Ukrainian authorities refuse to negotiate. But by Autumn, Zelensky will no longer be able to resolve the conflict through diplomacy, due to the catastrophic situation of the Ukie army. This will happen soon, as the Ukie army groups in the Donbass will be finally destroyed, physically or taken prisoner.

Most of the "real" leaders of the EU countries would have to finally start thinking of their own citizens, and the coming winter, after a quite heaty, rainless, fertiliser-less summer. Ze, if he is still alive, or not thrown out by his own army chiefs, will be forced to take into account the critical state of the Ukie economy and industry, so would sue for practical negotiations, but most likely Ukraine will simply capitulate.

Posted by: ostro | Jun 16 2022 16:15 utc | 35

Part of yesterday's briefing by Zakharova's now translated into English, although it currently lacks her take-down of the CNN presstitute I noted yesterday. Hopefully, the transcript will be completed by 5pm Pacific today.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 16 2022 16:38 utc | 36

From RT on EU leaders visit to Kiev:

"German Chancellor Olaf Scholz stated that he'd come to Ukraine with a clear message – that Ukraine belongs in the European family and that Germany will support a positive decision on Ukraine and Moldova’s EU membership accession."

More troublemaking.

So Germany and France pledge more weapons to encourage the peace process.

Posted by: the pessimist | Jun 16 2022 16:41 utc | 37

Posted by: bevin | Jun 16 2022 15:44 utc | 27

Macron is re playing what he"ve done for the presiedential election: playing wartime president. for its internal audiance before an important election, unfortunatly , history tells that this trick works often ( see Zelensky ).

They came to advive zelensky to surrender Donbass, in order to ease the tensions, in order to ease their ( own ) sanctions, in order to not being pitchforked by their populace this fall due to a 25% inflation rates.

At what point a vassal cease to be one ?

Posted by: malamatias | Jun 16 2022 16:41 utc | 38

Today, Lavrov gave TASS a short interview, the transcript for now is Russian. Here's the last Q&A which I hope will curtail speculation on this one issue:

Question: You are well aware of such a project as Doomsday Clock. A simple question and at the same time a complex one: how much time is now in Moscow, and how much time is in Washington?

A: You know, I'm not following the project right now. I followed it once. At one point it was seven midnight. I don't know where this arrow is.

But if we are talking about Moscow, then we are the main initiator of the statements made at the summits of Russia and the United States and which were made on behalf of the leaders of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, that there can be no winners in a nuclear war, so it should never be unleashed. That's our position. We firmly adhere to it.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 16 2022 16:45 utc | 39

@32 ostro

I get it, no elites( the perpetrators ) should die. They should just give orders that butchers, bakers, factory workers, teachers and any other working patsy should give their lives.

Posted by: WTFUD | Jun 16 2022 17:03 utc | 40

Posted by: karlof1 | Jun 16 2022 16:45 utc | 38

Lots of activity today, there is another interview with NTV, and another one with RT, but the main dish has not been served, just announced by Zakharova, interview with the BBC and a journo whose name I do not recall but who deserves some respect, a Brit that speaks Russian¡¡ an Englishman speaking a foreign language, a true rarity, with an appealing accent all be said. Zakharova just extracted one of Lavrov's sentences, "I don't care what's the West view".

Posted by: Paco | Jun 16 2022 17:05 utc | 41

@ Et Tu | Jun 16 2022 15:23 utc | 24

That point has been raised so many times its beginning to sound like trolling.

Aside from the totally obvious point that that clearly is what the Ukies want the RF to do.

(Et Tu's art of war - Always do exactly what the enemy wants you to do)

It is also supposedly one of the very toughest parts of the line.

(Et Tu's art of war - Always attack the strongest and most heavily defended part of the line)

The is also apparently a chemical plant of some type there and the consequences could be serious.

(Et Tu's art of war - Always look for ways to give the enemy a propaganda victory)

Donetsk has been substantially evacuated, the civilian losses there are regrettable but not heavy in the greater scheme of things and militarily insignificant. There are more pressing and urgent concerns, like defeating the enemy army on the more active parts of the front.

(Et Tu's art of war - Try to prioritise everything because that really works)

Sorry, you probably didn't deserve that but I am so bored with seeing that question asked and answered over and over again that I started channelling RSH.

Posted by: MarkU | Jun 16 2022 17:21 utc | 42

A small excerpt here but seems the BBC did not have the time to at least subtitle it. Lavrov at its best, he says that Johnson and Truss want to put Russia on her knees, so like Nike, just do it is his answer )))

Posted by: Paco | Jun 16 2022 17:38 utc | 43

The anglos so concerned about their mercenaries, with all types of legal arguments. How quickly we forget Guantanamo, the orange suits, illegal combatants and days on end with Metallica playing on thousands of watts equipment for the delight of the "illegal combatants"

I don't know what's worse, the hypocrisy or the amnesia.

Posted by: Paco | Jun 16 2022 17:43 utc | 44

In response to whirlX@18,

The number as I heard it stated today is 330 000 servicemen participating in the operation, not including DLPR, Wagner or volunteer detachments participating under Chechen command. This isn't the number of troops at the front-lines, but includes reserves that are in constant rotation and support units outside of active combat roles, which is the largest group of the three. Thus the number of units in combat formations at any given time is presumably somewhere around a third of that number and in flux, above and below 100k on any given day.

I don't think you have anything to apologize for, particularly since mobilization isn't entirely unthinkable in the event that the conflict escalates beyond Ukraine, but I also understand Martyanov's reaction to such rumors since they make very little sense.

Mobilization implies, in the best case, taking civilians with combat experience into active military service to bolster one's standing forces. This can be done by incentivizing voluntary service or, if the situation deteriorates, forcefully drafting the necessary manpower.

If things take a particularly bad turn, the military starts scraping the barrel in terms of draftees, overlooking lack of combat experience, physical and mental deficiencies, and starts grabbing anyone they can get their hands on. We've been getting reports of this happening in Ukraine for quite some time and, to some extent, even before the war.

Meanwhile in Russia, there's still a long queue of volunteers, with combat experience, who're waiting for their turn to either be accepted into volunteer battalion PMC's under Kadyrov or through the Wagner group. The Russian military, at this point in time, is only handing out contract work to handfuls of individuals. Chechens hand out 2 month contracts less sparingly, but even they are full up at the moment. Wagner is a decentralized structure, so they can more fluidly redirect individuals to smaller PMC's and subgroups who want to expand operations or plug gaps left by casualties or resignations, but their contracts vary.

In short, there's a backlog of combat capable civilians looking for contract work who are slowly being absorbed by structures parallel to that of the Russian military. Crucially, these structures are responsible for their own equipment and support and are not financed out of the military budget of RF. If Russia needed to bolster its manpower in the SMO, it would open the flood-gates on official military contracts or facilitate the expansion of these parallel structures.

Mobilization is reserved for when there is an existential threat to Russia, at least to the point where it's worth tanking the civilian economy, and it will likely be coupled with economic mobilization. I wanted to reply to you yesterday, saying that if Putin indeed announces mobilization in accordance with the rumor, it means the war is expanding into Europe proper, which I think is how many foreign governments and the global markets would also react.

Posted by: Skiffer | Jun 16 2022 17:43 utc | 45

@ WTFUD | Jun 16 2022 16:04 utc | 30
The fourth guy is Romania's Klaus Iohannis.
Impressive. Emmanuel, Olaf, Mario and Klaus.. . and no Joe.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jun 16 2022 17:46 utc | 46

Some headlines today, Miller -Gazprom boss- says that NS2 is ready to pump it, Draghi says that the technical reasons for the diminution of gas flows thru NS1 are suspicious -no kidding- and the one that breaks them all, Caca-Cola is leaving Russia, what could be better for their health, even though some house wife might complain how is she going to unclog the garburator.

Posted by: Paco | Jun 16 2022 17:56 utc | 47

I share many themes of discussion about west vs russia/global south that has been represented in this forum. The participants of discussion have expressed/trusted/expected//wished/hoped for a positive change to materialise from Ukraine SMO that would potentially change the tide in global geopolitics from unipolar to true multipolarity (for the benefit of people/mankind?))

Being from one of the countries that in early 90's were lied to believe that it was all about "wind of change" (Scorpions song of the moment), and after adopting all those changes only realizing 30 years later that it was all about lie to capture power and possession of freedoms sovereign people and their national wealth, I must ask, what makes everyone here to believe that what is going on in/or/by Chinese and Russian rulers today, is just not the repetition of the same?

Despite of all the change currently in the air, I do not see anything that would change the basics of power from the past. I mean, as the academic theory of political history proves, the only driver for anyone to reach more power is to posses more power. Considering the theory, what makes us think that the (welcome) grab of the (misused) power from the west to the new hands is going to produce any different outcome during the next 30 years?

I might have another 30 years to see, but I would certainly be disappoined to write this same question then again on my death bed.

Anyone here. Lets take a moment to share views to why the power structures of post Ukraine conflict could stay in service of the people. I mean, its the people of Ukraine and Russia who are paying dearly for this chance.

Why do you believe any of this would be better than any time before?

Posted by: Tigger | Jun 16 2022 18:00 utc | 48

Here it is, Lavrov BBC.

Posted by: Paco | Jun 16 2022 18:09 utc | 49

The mobilization rumor came from ISW. They translated a post that was actually about how someone could volunteer. And the list was explanations of each option, pros and cons. For example, in the Wagner section it said they will take people with misdemeanor type criminal offenses while the Russian army will not accept anyone with any criminal history.

It was all a big, intentional misunderstanding from the propaganda organs of the west. Russian sites have endless comment section arguments about whether Russia should mobilize more troops, but ya know, comment sections.

Posted by: Lex | Jun 16 2022 18:24 utc | 50

@Posted by: Paco | Jun 16 2022 17:43 utc | 43

"The anglos so concerned about their mercenaries, with all types of legal arguments. How quickly we forget Guantanamo, the orange suits, illegal combatants and days on end with Metallica playing on thousands of watts equipment for the delight of the "illegal combatants". I don't know what's worse, the hypocrisy or the amnesia."

So true, together with forgetting about all those Western-murdered Muslims whilst they wail about the non-existent Uighur "genocide", with not one Muslim nation complaining about such as "genocide". If there really are mercenaries as 20-25% of the 2500 trapped in the Azot plant in Severodonetsk it will be a massive wake up call as hundreds and hundreds of Western citizens (the vast majority of which have probably murdered many civilians and people fighting for their freedom in other nations) are sentenced to death. They picked the wrong opponent to take on, Russia is not one of those devastated developing countries that cannot fight back.

Posted by: Roger | Jun 16 2022 18:26 utc | 51

Posted by: Tigger | Jun 16 2022 18:00 utc | 47

It is the western mindset speaking from you.
It's our projection....
Let's see how it is going to play out.
I have faith in the Chinese and Russians to get us out of this mess

Posted by: Kartoschka | Jun 16 2022 18:27 utc | 52
Kherson today 16.06.2022
60 rubles = 1 USD, when you calculate the prices in the video. For example, potatoes, 10 rubles/kg (0.16 USD), tomatoes 5 rouble/kg (0.08 USD).

Posted by: ostro | Jun 16 2022 18:28 utc | 53

@44 Skiffer, and others Re: "mobilization" rumor

Add to that some also-informal news of mild innovations in the contract terms via Rosgvardia -- described in yesterday's comments. Those are same as Skiffer described, but under actual RF flag and not PMC.

Incidentally, some of the Chechens I think are also official RF flagged, and not PMC. But bureaucratically distinct from Russian Army. It's a big old mix.

Regardless, the original (and unsourced) claim by youtube map guy made it sound like a general mobilization. As in the WWII variety. Not the case.

Andrei Martyanov, in his uninhibited style, pointed out the the guys making the smooth visual presentation on social media don't necessarily know sh#t, and often relay information of dubious origin. Double check everything.

Posted by: ptb | Jun 16 2022 18:34 utc | 54

Lets take a moment to share views to why the power structures of post Ukraine conflict could stay in service of the people. I mean, its the people of Ukraine and Russia who are paying dearly for this chance.

Posted by: Tigger | Jun 16 2022 18:00 utc | 47
Find and read Biden's letter to seven US refiners, then you'd understand. Even, he did...Vladimir Putin's Price the US. Yesterday the MSM was full of it.

Posted by: ostro | Jun 16 2022 18:34 utc | 55

@49 Lex

ah, ISW making exaggerations... well that would explain it.

Posted by: ptb | Jun 16 2022 18:35 utc | 56

@Tigger | Jun 16 2022 18:00 utc | 47

"Why do you believe any of this would be better than any time before?"

We need to try, and it is in our nature to do so.

Despite our human follies and foibles we are capable of remarkable things [and of course despicable ones as well] - on both personal and societal scales. We can conceive of more equitable arrangements than the current unipolar one that is exploitative and relies on violence and blackmail, so we should work to achieve that. Will there still be the inspiration for great tragic and comic art in a hundred years or three? Most likely, assuming our species survives.

We are capable, collectively, of taking care of the basic needs of the human population while not doing excessive violence to our habitat. We have the means and the knowledge available. Perhaps out perpetual falling short is not a bug, but a feature in that a 'utopia' would kill us more effectively than hardship, struggle, and sacrifice.

Posted by: the pessimist | Jun 16 2022 18:38 utc | 57

Sergei Lavrov gives an interview to the BBC:

BBC: In the eyes of the West...
Lavrov: I am not interested in the eyes of the West.
The Coca-Cola Company has announced that it will no longer produce and sell the brand's drinks in Russia.

Oh Lord, what are we going to wash the rust with?!!

- Maria Zakharova

Posted by: ostro | Jun 16 2022 18:38 utc | 58

pessimist (21)

Yes, I'm still wondering if the US General Coultier was captured or killed, also a Canadian General (retired) was also captured we saw him in a picture on Telegram, what has become of him also, and apart from the killed and captured foreign mercenaries, such as the two Brits and the Moroccan, we know very little of how many foreign mercenaries especially from the West have been captured.

It will be interesting to see what foreign mercenaries from Nato countries are captured at the Azot plant in the coming weeks.

Posted by: Republicofscotland | Jun 16 2022 18:39 utc | 59

Ukraine's finance minister, according to RT, say Ukraine needs an additional $5b a month to sustain government services - donations accepted.

Posted by: the pessimist | Jun 16 2022 18:53 utc | 60

Down South | 8

This is serious stuff, they really mean business it seems. Thanks for sharing!


Don Bacon | 20

"> Security Driver – San Francisco, California
United States, California
$480 - $540 / day + Full benefits"

Hm, would this include the occasional drive-by shooting? Do they do drive-by shooting in San Francisco? Or is crime there still like in "The Streets of San Francisco"?

Posted by: Scotch Bingeington | Jun 16 2022 18:57 utc | 61

General Austin is in Brussels, and attended a press conference.

Q: Oren Liebermann, CNN Mr. Secretary, you talked about the support of NATO behind the cause of Ukraine. It's relatively easy, by and large, to unite NATO governments, but how do you keep the NATO public engaged when many, including in the U.S., are already more concerned about the high costs of fuel and inflation than they are about what's happening in the Donbas region? How fragile is public support for this, as it drags on?
SEC. AUSTIN:Well, certainly, making sure that the public -- that the people of each of our countries in the Alliance remain engaged. I'm confident that our leaders will do the right thing to address their constituents. You know, as we come together and talk about complex issues, you know, we can be assured from time to time that there will be differences of opinion, but that's why we have these meetings, to make sure that we -- you know, we really wring things out and entertain any questions or issues that various countries may have so that they can go back and work with their constituents and make sure that, you know, people really understand where the Alliance is going and what it needs. And I have confidence that in every case, we'll be able to reach consensus and move forward. We've done that in the past; I certainly saw evidence of that here in this meeting and in other meetings. But that's why we have these meetings. That's why we come together. But in terms of making sure that the constituents of the various countries, you know, remain supportive of our efforts, I have confidence that the leadership of the various countries will be able to manage that and maintain support, so . . . .here

. . .you know . . .'cuz he doesn't have a clue. This is the reason for the US law that the SecDef must be a civilian. Generals have no background in answering questions. Austin's deputy ain't too bright either, has a PhD in political science. . ."Doctor" Hicks.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jun 16 2022 19:00 utc | 62

... I suspect even were the RF to hold high value prisoners they would not broadcast this fact while continuing to obtain information from them and at the same time creating uncertainty in the minds of NATO commands.

Posted by: Sushi | Jun 16 2022 17:26 utc | 51

It does seem more consistent with RF’s cautious and conservative approach that they would try to get the most from high value captives, especially if they could be traded for meaningful concessions.

As to these debunks of the capture of Roger Cloutier, Trevor Cadieu, Eric Olson, if these anything more than undated photos or press releases that could be from anyone? Suspiciously feeble given the substance of the claims.

Even if all of those guys turn up over the next few months, that’s still enough time to hose of the bunker-stink and catch some rays =)

Posted by: anon2020 | Jun 16 2022 19:09 utc | 63

Clair Finkelstein creator of the NON-PROFIT "Center of ethics and rule of law". Sure she's right on it trying to paint these two CIA dorks as legitimate "volunteers". More like musketeers or MERCENARIES eligble for duty as firing squad targets.

Posted by: Stritchplatte | Jun 16 2022 19:09 utc | 64

. . from CNN
US national security adviser Jake Sullivan said on Thursday that the United States has purposefully “refrained from laying out what we see as an end game” for the war in Ukraine and will “not be pressuring [Ukraine] to make territorial concessions” to Russia, but noted that the US has been in talks with Ukraine about what a settlement could look like. . .here

The US “refrained from laying out what we see as an end game” but "the US has been in talks with Ukraine about what a settlement could look like."
Thanks, Jake, you're worth every penny.
. . .from the web: Jake Sullivan reportedly earns a yearly salary of $524,300.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jun 16 2022 19:10 utc | 65

Posted by: Tigger | Jun 16 2022 18:00 utc | 47

"Why do you believe any of this would be better than any time before".

I believe because occassionally in history, and I reckon now is such a time, you have a conjunction of circumstances: leaders (Putin, Xi et al) who consistently, patiently articulate a noble and righteous vision for their peoples (and in this time humanity globally) and who consistently act in accord with their vision; leading nations whose people have a sufficiently coherent and sturdy moral and spiritual values; and those states having sufficient economic and military strength to challenge the oppressor; and the oppressor being a weakening, morally degenerate empire in decline; and the plurality of other oppressed peoples looking on seeing that the chance of a better, more equitable future outweighs the risks of joining the fight.

If now is such time, it won't lead to utopia, and the new dispensation won't last, but I will savour it, even though my people - me being of the West- will of necessity have to come down a peg or two.

Posted by: Andrew Celestina | Jun 16 2022 19:15 utc | 66

@ Skiffer | Jun 16 2022 17:43 utc | 44

Thank you. That was a super smart and one very informative in-depth explanation.
It is lot clearer now.

However, it is also possible that such misunderstandings come out of lack of words for non-native English speakers, such as this Military Summery guy is.

I think he wanted to say that RF might need to bring in 200.000 more troops if RF wants to end this operation faster.
Not to really mobilise the entire country.

Anyway, such rumours were denied by spokesperson Peskov himself today.

Only if conflict spreads, and it really might, I can think of many reasons for Russia to rapidly but gradually mobilise.

But let us first hear what Putin will tell us tomorrow from Sankt Petersburg.

Posted by: whirlX | Jun 16 2022 19:15 utc | 67

The two American mercenaries capture was portrayed by some Podcaster whose name escapes me as some similar last scene in "Saving private Ryan" type moment as these two blew up Russian tanks and killed many Russians before being captured.

Posted by: Lou Cypher | Jun 16 2022 19:27 utc | 68

Kartoschka @51

Thank you for starting your response with character assassination. Is that not what they do in the "west" when they want to silence someone? Is that not exactly the "western mindset"?

Would you instead care to elaborate where you draw what you call as "Our projection"? My call to assess the situation would include ideas and views that are needed to achieve something like "projection". Perhaps you have analysed facts and reasoning to reach your projection and care to share those, instead of just slapping labels on your fellow bar flys?

Posted by: Tigger | Jun 16 2022 19:31 utc | 69

This is the reason for the US law that the SecDef must be a civilian. Generals have no background in answering questions.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jun 16 2022 19:00 utc | 61

Perhaps no background in "answering but not replying" (to quote Howard Prince in the film The Front).

Posted by: David Levin | Jun 16 2022 19:37 utc | 70

RE: Death to mercenaries

I think it better to keep them alive for future trades.
And also to make it more attractive for others to surrender.
Those in Severodonesk might as well fight to the death as surrender means death, right?

Posted by: Steve | Jun 16 2022 19:40 utc | 71

Have look at Odessa on 16.06.2022, and war is supposed to around the corner...
And, they speak in Russian...

These short video tells what people really think. And, they are there on the spot...

Posted by: ostro | Jun 16 2022 19:42 utc | 72

Why do you believe any of this would be better than any time before?
Posted by: Tigger | Jun 16 2022 18:00 utc | 47

The early 1990s' euphoria related to the demise of communism and "independence" in Ukraine (and some other new countries, e.g. Croatia) brought back into the country all nazi emigres and their descendants. This time the traffic reverses, the old and new nazis will be on their way out.

Posted by: Pagan | Jun 16 2022 19:51 utc | 73

Mariupol: pop 434k, approx urban area 117sqkm. Odessa: pop 1.0m, approx urban area 283 sqkm. Kharkov: pop 1.42m, approx urban area 278 sqkm.

Russia, DPR/LPR now control approx 78k sqkm of territory. Should they take Sumy, Kharkov, Poltava, Dnipro, Zaporizhzhia, Nikolaev, and Odessa they will control approx 204k sqkm. This is the territory that was suggested today Russia is interested in.

Regarding troop numbers I think these figures speak for themselves.

Posted by: the pessimist | Jun 16 2022 19:51 utc | 74

All the DOD biolabs are under the supervision of the Army Institute of Research, whose headquarters are in the Forest Glen Annex, Fort Detrick, in Silver Spring MD right outside D.C., in the Daniel K. Inouye Building, which is less than a mile from where I live. The biolab program is described at length in Kees van der Pijl's book "States of Exception".

Posted by: Lysias | Jun 16 2022 19:52 utc | 75

Pessimist @56

Thanks for your hopeful post. Hope is what keeps us going, but its also what gets us into trouble if facts of reality are not assessed and reacted continuously.

The situation in the west is at least partially due to people not caring to monitor and hold responsible those in power before they either reach powers that can no longer be challenged (this is were "vassal states" arise) or before the elite achieves to create structures beyond control of the people (E.g. EU lead by unelected Commission).

With the examples as above, I would like to return to my question: how to avoid happening to China and Russia, what happened to Europe? I mean, currently the narrative for Russia sounds as good as it did 30 years ago about EU being about peace and prosperity, but what are the mechanisms or methods to keep the elite in Russia (or China, or global west) true to the people also in future? Any advice would perhaps help people in Europe to apply the same methods even that it might be too late.

The trust and hope did not help European people, rather those were the very reasoning why the elite was able to take over the power and drive the world into the current conflict.

You see what I mean?

Posted by: Tigger | Jun 16 2022 19:55 utc | 76

@ Posted by: MarkU | Jun 16 2022 17:21 utc | 41

Yes, a question asked so often, yet 3 months in still left unanswered from the only authority that can answer it: Russia.

So, if we're gonna be honest with each other, "asked and answered"?
Sorry, maybe some of the answers aren't good enough for some.

What is the 'answer'?

Too tough to deploy the world's alleged greatest fighting machine devoted to valour and bravery?
Not 'special' enough for an actual operation where it's needed?

Even at the most cynical, PR level, the fact that Donetsk is being shelled 3 months into a war that focuses on Coal Mines, Wheat fields, Ports and Nuclear plants over people sounds like a bs operation, we all understand what 'special' is code for now: $$$

Posted by: Et Tu | Jun 16 2022 20:00 utc | 77

I very much doubt if an NCO in the Chemical Corps would have been involved in blowing up tanks. His work was much more likely connected with the biolabs, at least one of which we know is in Kharkov.

Posted by: Lysias | Jun 16 2022 20:03 utc | 78

Article on Russian Logistics from Naked Capitalism -

US has completely different logistic systems because they do warfare differently - Sea focus vs overland focus of the Russians. Us experts find Russian way difficult to understand because of chauvinism.

Quote - "I find it hard to see how the US can be preening about Western logistics when we spent eight years funding and training Ukraine to NATO standards and they can’t adequately supply Ukraine. Now admittedly there are lots of reasons in addition to logistics, like Russia has done a good job of blowing up weapons deliveries, a lot of the weapons were old and didn’t operate well"

Posted by: Aslangeo | Jun 16 2022 20:06 utc | 79

The admissions that sanctions are backfiring slowly creeping into the mainstream narrative.

Note the focus on the "war effort" and little concern for people in Russia....or the Global South.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Jun 16 2022 20:20 utc | 80

Posted by: Et Tu | Jun 16 2022 20:00 utc | 76

What is your point? Russia invaded with a fighting force ratio of something like 1:3. The Ukies and NATO/FUKUS had strongly fortified their positions in and around the areas in question which is one of the main reasons for the invasion.

Who are you to question - without any semblance of an idea on civilian casualties - whether the operation is advancing according to pretty much planned objectives?

As you've been told over and over, many civilians in the Donbass region had already fled starting in 2014/2015 and who's left are predominantly those fighting the Ukrainians.

You never come to play with facts, links or solid logical reasoning. Why is that? You have truly morphed into a useless concern troll if you weren't one already.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Jun 16 2022 20:24 utc | 81

Mariupol, 16.06.2022, school children, school, water transport, and so on...

Well, not what Ze would like to show. 😃

Posted by: ostro | Jun 16 2022 20:27 utc | 82

Yes, I'm still wondering if the US General Coultier was captured or killed, also a Canadian General (retired) was also captured we saw him in a picture on Telegram, what has become of him also, and apart from the killed and captured foreign mercenaries, such as the two Brits and the Moroccan, we know very little of how many foreign mercenaries especially from the West have been captured.

It will be interesting to see what foreign mercenaries from Nato countries are captured at the Azot plant in the coming weeks.

Posted by: Republicofscotland | Jun 16 2022 18:39 utc | 58

I have not seen any reports of Canadians killed or captured in Ukraine. Cadieu said he is coming home to co-operate with the investigation into his alleged sexual misconduct, almost 30 years ago.

Cadieu could not be immediately reached for comment on Wednesday, but a CBC report quoted him as saying in a statement: "I have just been advised that I have been charged by the CFNIS. "I am making arrangements to return to Canada from Ukraine, and I will continue to co-operate with this process, as I have from the start."

Posted by: Opport Knocks | Jun 16 2022 20:28 utc | 83

So at all and in general:

Xi: We have lifted 850 million people out of abject poverty in 50 years.

Joe: We have reached only 8.5 million within 50 years, uh, but for good - they no longer need food.

(Can be improved with pleasure.)

On the subject of mobilization/ISW: There is a very good, detailed analysis of this by the TG channel Slavyangrad with the very apt title: The Art of Viral Lying: The Example of the Institute for the Study of War.

I highly recommend it.

Greetings from Germany and excuse the probably rather bad English.

Posted by: SW (also Berlin) | Jun 16 2022 20:31 utc | 84

Posted by: Opport Knocks | Jun 16 2022 20:28 utc | 82

Actually, no. I don't care, whether any of the mercenaries gets caught or gets killed. Or, get death sentences, once get caught by the DPR or LNR Militias. They went there to kill. They are/were paid killers.

Posted by: ostro | Jun 16 2022 20:36 utc | 85

I don't think I've seen this posted yet.

Dr. Michael Brenner writes for Consortium News about the Last Tango in Washington

The American Dilemma

Those truths underscore the American dilemma as the Ukraine venture turns sour on the battlefield and your enemy is faring far better than expected while your friends and allies are faring far worse.

Russia has blunted everything thrown at them – to the shock of Western planners. Every assumption underpinning their scorched-earth assault on the Russian economy has proven mistaken. A dismal record of analytical error even by C.I.A. and think tank standards.

Off-the-charts forecasts on the country’s economy, and the global impact of sanctions, crippled Washington’s plan from the outset. Tactical initiatives of a military nature have proven equally futile; another 1,000 vintage Javelins with dead battery packs will not rescue the Ukrainian army in the Donbass.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Jun 16 2022 20:38 utc | 86

@83 SW

Thanks!! Recommended to the other commenters here.
To read the whole thing, since it took me a sec to figure out how to get telegram to spit it out:

( Executive summary: )

Posted by: ptb | Jun 16 2022 20:43 utc | 87

Southfront reported that a huge fire broke out in Russians largest oil gas field

Posted by: Petr | Jun 16 2022 20:46 utc | 88

In response to whirlX@66,

You may be right in suggesting that it's a semantic issue. Mobilization of 200.000 for immediate combat duty in itself sounds like nonsense, when you have 1 million in active service, 2 million in reserves and more civilian volunteers than you know what to do with. There was also talk of permitting foreign volunteers, Iran, Syria, Ossetia, but I don't know what came of it -- I heard it was delegated to Chechnya to organize, and that they turned down the idea. But that may have been to provide official cover.

Anyway, apart from that, it wouldn't make much sense for Putin to announce additional troop figures. I hope that together with ptb@53 and other commentators we've managed to convey an image of the tools at the disposal of Russian MOD which approximately reflect reality.

In this reality, the process of regulating the force composition in Ukraine happens dynamically and is under continuous review and doesn't rely on decrees or pronouncements from the head of state. If Russia needs an additional 200.000 servicemen to accomplish its objectives in Ukraine tomorrow, all the conditions are there for it to have happened gradually over a period of months and weeks -- which makes the figure itself an anomaly that smells of incompetence.

Subsequently, a sudden deficit of 200.000 men would be worrying news indeed, for obvious reasons -- suppression of excessive casualties and incompetence by the general staff, and any such public pronouncement would come like thunder in a blue sky, and likely be followed by forced resignations and civil unrest.

A formal expansion of goals could, objectively, necessitate an increase in participating manpower -- but what that entails in practice is up to military high command and revealed at their discretion only. Putin doesn't exactly have the reputation of someone impatient, who likes to hurry things along, nor someone who likes to throw bodies at a problem or make unnecessary sacrifices, so I think any expansion of goals, if it is announced, will follow the established pattern of appearing to occur naturally.

When looking at it from that point of view, it makes sense that people who are well informed on the situation, or see themselves as such, might even take offense at such rumors, since they inherently imply certain grave deficiencies within Russian military and political command and are compatible with particular Western war-propaganda narratives. We'll see what Putin has to say tomorrow, but my bet is it'll be fairly uneventful like the much hyped Victory day address.

Posted by: Skiffer | Jun 16 2022 20:47 utc | 89

Pagan @72

90s brought in lots of wrong US influence to Ukraine and Russia, which at the time was not understood before it was too late One could argue that the people should have monitored their leaders better to not to let happen to Russia and Ukraine what then happened. Now, one could also argue that people then had no means to fight against powers to be even if they had figured out the foul play, corruption and demise in time.

Its true that Putin and his administration managed to build the Russia from there on, to where it is today. However, Putin is not there forever even if we want. It surely was a huge fight between the powerful oligarchs and wested powers before Putin reached the top and was able to steer the country to better future. If he did not, the game would potentially look much worse today. Now its all great and hence opportunity for a global change for better looks possible.

However, what more Russian people can do if the same 90s style powerplay starts again after Putin has retired. Or even later? It gets back to the same basics why Europeans are in trouble - there is no tools to keep the leaders true to their people - unless the person just happens to be extraordinary. which is rare. Good leaders come only very rarely - mostly the corrupt and meanest are tough or corrupt enough to win the powerplay.

So while we are happy at the moment for the good winds, it would be also a perfect time to figure out methods and tools to keep the power honest to people in the future. My question remains, how is that possible and what tools to use?

Posted by: Tigger | Jun 16 2022 20:51 utc | 90

For those who question reason for hope should Russia and China succeed in righting some part of what is wrong with the world (a daunting task to be sure) let us not expect too much of their leadership, but only hope that when they do succeed in this limited operation they will do so in such a way that it will inspire others who might be concerned about the future of their immediate families and their prospects (if not for themselves), to make the modicum of effort that humans have the ability to make as a community in behalf of those who will follow after. Many of us feel helpless; it is up to those who can and know how to lead to do so. That is what Putin and Xi have done. What we can do is follow and support our own true leaders as best we can. And I do believe the support is there, waiting. As it was when we thought Obama was the one -- even more since frustrated then -- there is huge potential crying to be put to use.

I would submit that reason for hope that the Russians and Chinese will be successful lies with how they have performed to date: with concern for their own and other nations' citizens; from a knowledge of what they themselves have struggled with over time; and giving the example of leadership with respect to the education of their young people. It's generational to them, from care for the elderly down to those born today. These elements we have discussed and should know by now. This blog has given thought to this over its existence. If you still doubt, go back and read.

I for one admire what those leaders have achieved so far, remembering where they were at the beginning of this century. I am sure they remember it even more deeply and will strive to never be in that condition again. And that is all one can ask.

Posted by: juliania | Jun 16 2022 20:52 utc | 91

@SW (also Berlin) | Jun 16 2022 20:31 utc | 83

From what I read in that post it doesn't seem that ISW was doing more than a slander/propaganda piece. I don't know if they were the sole source for the mobilization rumors, but, practically speaking, to "take and hold all Russian towns" including Kharkov and Odessa will take more troops than are currently deployed unless the keys to all cities are delivered peacefully.

Posted by: the pessimist | Jun 16 2022 20:52 utc | 92


USA citizen Linda Oporto Al Kharun was named as organizer of biological experiments on uninformed or mentally handicapped people ni Ukraine, by Ru MoD


Maybe the same person or maybe just a random person unlucky to have the same name (whoever Google seems to not know any other person sharing the name)

Posted by: Arioch | Jun 16 2022 20:55 utc | 93

So what part of projection and ours you didn't get?
It's our imperial mindset, implanted through our childhood,TV, education. We can't think without a power verticale.

Your question is unanswerable.
You are just stating that the new boss is going to be like the old boss.
Well you can't know, I don't think so.
Why? Because there will be no bosses anymore. That's the whole point of this struggle.

Posted by: Kartoschka | Jun 16 2022 20:59 utc | 94

Posted by: Tigger | Jun 16 2022 20:51 utc | 89

Dmitry Medvedev is just 56, so the future for Russia will be in good hands later. There are few other people too, but there won't any 90s style infighting. Whatever problems Yeltsin had, he saved Russia in a way by becoming the president of RF -- not letting Gorbaczow to ruin the country, and then passing the power to Putin. Yeltsin had the ability to recognise the future leader.

Posted by: ostro | Jun 16 2022 21:02 utc | 95

Full English version of Russia MoD's analysis of US bio weapons program in Ukraine
NBCP Briefing Documents
NBCP Briefing Slides

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jun 16 2022 21:02 utc | 96

From Pepe Escobar's Telegram channel... A comment from Medvedev...

"I saw a message that Ukraine wants to receive LNG from its overseas owners under Lend-Lease with payment for delivery in 2 years. Otherwise, next winter it will simply freeze.
Just a question. And who said that in two years Ukraine will even exist on the world map? Although the Americans don’t care anymore - they have invested so much in the “anti-Russia” project that everything else is a trifle for them ..." - Dmitry Medvedev

Also from Pepe's Telegram channel...


Key facts rollin' out of the forum - officially and after discussions:
- Dollars and euros will continue to circulate in Russia.
- There will be NO return to a Soviet economy.
- Import substitution will be only partial.
- The ruble under 60 per dollar is not a good thing for the Russian economy. The government will intervene.
- Changes on the global economy are irreversible. There's no going back.
- A significant part of the Russian economy will be reoriented to the internal market.

- Because NATOstan will continue to weaponize Kiev, the Donetsk People's Republic's troops will NOT stop at the border.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Jun 16 2022 21:04 utc | 97

Posted by: Tigger | Jun 16 2022 20:51 utc | 89

Do you understand Russian, by the way?

Posted by: ostro | Jun 16 2022 21:04 utc | 98

Apparently a few sons of good families have lost their way.
The ad should say: You may be required to to fight zombies with tattoos.

Posted by: Marjorie | Jun 16 2022 21:05 utc | 99

"As US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin reported on Wednesday, Kyiv has now received enough qualified equipment for twelve artillery battalions. About 237 main battle tanks, 300 armored personnel carriers and 1,600 air defense systems were delivered; With 97,000 anti-tank weapons, more anti-tank weapons were made available to the Ukrainian armed forces than there are currently tanks in the world.[2] Austin pointed to additional planned arms exports; Germany, for example, WILL hand over several multiple rocket launchers and guided missiles to Kyiv. Further deliveries are being prepared. In practice, Ukraine's rearmament is coordinated via a specially set up cell in the Patch Barracks in Stuttgart-Vaihingen, where the European headquarters of the US armed forces is located. According to a BBC report, military personnel from 26 countries are involved."

Posted by: njet | Jun 16 2022 21:11 utc | 100

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