Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
January 23, 2023

Ukraine Open Thread 2023-21

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

The current open thread for other issues is here.

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

Posted by b on January 23, 2023 at 16:26 UTC | Permalink

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Most recent Douglas Macgregor analysis:

Posted by: upsetter | Jan 23 2023 16:37 utc | 1

@ Old Microbiologist | Jan 23 2023 8:17 utc | 216 - on the last open ukraine thread.. thanks for that post.. brilliant and i learned a lot from it.. thanks..

Posted by: james | Jan 23 2023 16:38 utc | 2

very relevant article from indian punchline

Europe has enemies within, enemies without

Posted by: james | Jan 23 2023 16:50 utc | 3

@ 3
I always enjoy MKB's articles, they seem so perfect. But nobody's perfect, so we read in his penultimate paragraph: "It is still 36 hours to go for the first anniversary of the Russian operation in Ukraine." . . .No, the affair didn't start on 24 January.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Jan 23 2023 16:57 utc | 4

Made Official. Said out Loud. The war is real. No longer a hybrid. Negotiations to end it is not an option as prohibited in UKR law.

Russia and West on verge of ‘real war’ – Lavrov
The West has long aimed to destroy everything Russian, the FM has said

The current situation in Ukraine shows that the conflict between Russia and the West can no longer be defined as a “hybrid war” but is instead approaching being a real one, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on Monday. 

Speaking at a press conference following a meeting with his South African counterpart, Naledi Pandor, Lavrov also noted that this “almost real” war was something that the West “has been preparing for a long time against Russia.” 

The minister claimed that Western powers are seeking to destroy everything Russian, from the language to the culture that had existed in Ukraine for centuries, and even forbid people from speaking their native language. [.]

AND when diplomats are expelled

Latvia to reduce diplomatic presence in Russia in solidarity with Estonia,

Russia has expelled Estonia’s ambassador.

AND Hungary has had enough of the sanctions. Livid is an apt descriptor. I will not be surprised if it exits the EU bloc.

Hungary to oppose EU’s anti-Russian nuclear sanctions — Foreign Minister

Peter Szijjarto noted that "the European Commission has, obviously, commenced the development of the 10th sanctions package"

BUDAPEST, January 23. /TASS/. Hungary will not support any EU sanctions that would potentially limit cooperation with Russia in the nuclear field, Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto told reporters during a break at a meeting of EU Foreign Ministers in Brussels Monday.

"Hungary will not support any sanctions that in any way limit nuclear cooperation with Russia," Szijjarto said.

The Minister noted that "the European Commission has, obviously, commenced the development of the 10th sanctions package." However, Hungary warned that it will not support any proposals "if they include restrictions on cooperation with Russia in the nuclear area," Szijjarto said.

"This would cause enormous damage to our country and violate its energy security," he underscored.

"I made it clear that nuclear energy is crucial for Hungary’s power supply," the Foreign Minister said, noting that the Paks Nuclear Power plant, which uses Russian nuclear fuel, provides half of the country’s energy supply.[.]

Three weeks into Q1 2023, the unusually warm winter is begining to feel like August. August 1939...Breakdown of diplomacy, war the extension of.

Posted by: Likklemore | Jan 23 2023 17:02 utc | 5

@ Don Bacon | Jan 23 2023 16:57 utc | 4

don - thanks..yes- he neglected to remember the month was february, not january...

i missed this, but someone must have posted it yesterday.. john helmers article from yesterday again for anyone who missed it -


Posted by: james | Jan 23 2023 17:12 utc | 6


Summary of the Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation on the progress of a special military operation on the territory of Ukraine (23.01.2023)

💥 In the Kupyansk direction, artillery of the Western Military District inflicted fire on accumulations of the 14th and 92nd mechanized brigades of the AFU in the areas of Dvurechnaya, Berestovoye of the Kharkiv region and Novoselovskoye of the Luhansk People's Republic. More than 40 Ukrainian servicemen and one vehicle were destroyed.

💥 In the Krasno-Limansky direction, artillery fire from the Central Military District and Airborne Troops defeated units of the 80th and 95th Airborne Assault Brigades of the AFU in the area of Serebryansky forestry. The enemy losses amounted to up to 70 servicemen, four armored fighting vehicles and two US-made AN/TPQ-37 and AN/TPQ-50 counter-battery radar stations.

◽️ In the Donetsk direction, volunteer assault squads, with the fire support of operational and army aviation, missile troops and artillery of the Southern Military District, liberated the settlement of Krasnopolye in the Donetsk People's Republic. During the day, more than 60 servicemen, two armored fighting vehicles, three vehicles, two Msta-B and D-30 howitzers, as well as a US-made AN/TPQ-50 counter-battery radar station were destroyed in this area.

💥 In the Zaporizhzhia direction, up to 30 Ukrainian servicemen, three vehicles, and a Grad multiple rocket launcher were destroyed by Eastern Military District troops as a result of a complex fire attack on AFU units during the day.

💥 On the Dneprovsk direction, high-precision ground-based weapons hit a temporary deployment point of the 107th Reactive Artillery Brigade unit near the village of Marganets, Dnepropetrovsk Oblast. As a result of the strike, a launcher of the American HIMARS multiple rocket launcher together with the crew and two vehicles were destroyed at the uncovered firing position.

💥 Operational-tactical aviation, missile forces and artillery of groups of troops (forces) of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation during the day hit 63 artillery units at firing positions, as well as manpower and military equipment in 97 areas.

◽️ Air defence assets shot down three Ukrainian unmanned aerial vehicles in the areas of Kreminna, Luhansk People's Republic, and Zhovtneve, Kharkiv Oblast, during the day. Also 14 HIMARS rockets were intercepted in the areas of Donetsk city, Avdeevka, Pilipchatino settlements of Donetsk People's Republic, as well as Chervonopopovka of Luhansk People's Republic.

📊 In total, since the beginning of the special military operation destroyed ((+?) over preceding 24hrs):

376 aircraft,
203 helicopters,
2934(+4) unmanned aerial vehicles,
401 anti-aircraft missile systems,
7607(+6) tanks and other armored combat vehicles,
987(+2) multiple rocket launchers,
3893(+6) field artillery guns and mortars, and
8153(+9) special military vehicle units.


Unusually brief & terse RF MOD 24hr summary. This aligns considerably fewer reports & details therein, publicly available re RF Ops over past five days.

First MBLRS claimed destroyed in five days. A HIMARS, the crew and 2 vehicles destroyed. (Probable the specialist reload & support vehicles).

Minimal AFVs & Vehicles destroyed. Below average MBRLS/artillery/mortars destroyed.

Partly corroborated by indicators in other reports, likely AFU is carefully husbanding/hoarding it's remaining Arms materiel along FEBA.

No Artillery ammunition dumps destroyed during period. Sustained Op tempo.

Posted by: Outraged | Jan 23 2023 17:15 utc | 7

If I were a head of Baltic midget state that has significant Russian population which I abuse, I would be very very careful what to do next. Seems like 404 virus can spread around, countries just go poof!

Posted by: Abe | Jan 23 2023 17:16 utc | 8

@ Likklemore | Jan 23 2023 17:02 utc | 5

that post by old microbiologist i referenced @ 2 was all about hungary and orban.. i found it fascinating and hadn't read any of that before.. perhaps it is in line with your projection here too.. i don't know..

Posted by: james | Jan 23 2023 17:18 utc | 9

Posted by: Likklemore | Jan 23 2023 17:02 utc | 5
Three weeks into Q1 2023, the unusually warm winter...

...has been subzero in northern England for most of the last three weeks.

Posted by: GT Stroller | Jan 23 2023 17:22 utc | 10

The current situation in Ukraine shows that the conflict between Russia and the West can no longer be defined as a “hybrid war” but is instead approaching being a real one

How long does a direct NATO-Russia war needs to go nuclear? Days? Weeks? Months?

I somehow can imagine shooting Zircons at aircraft carriers for that long.

Posted by: Vikichka | Jan 23 2023 17:26 utc | 11

"...has been subzero in northern England for most of the last three weeks."

Here in northern Italy too...

Posted by: mauro | Jan 23 2023 17:33 utc | 12

Hungary may very soon* join the war.

*<= 5 months

Posted by: Stavrogin | Jan 23 2023 17:33 utc | 13

More comedy, you can't make this up. First, a 26-yeare-old Wagner 'commander deserts and makes a dramatic escape to Norway. Now he has been arrested for some sort of disagreement with his hosts. To be deported, or not to be deported? Seems to feel that a sledgehammer or similar implement awaits his return to Russia. But wait, he has Much Important Information to give on Wagner and its presumed leader. Perhaps he should call himself Curveball and go to Sleepy Schmo Joe.

The laughfest tank saga bumbles on. Wonder where they find their Great Ideas for victory. Jane's? Pamphlets distributed at defence exhibitions?

Posted by: DilNir | Jan 23 2023 17:45 utc | 14

Who wants Leopard 2s and F-18s? No, hand over A-10s, F-22s, F-35s. Hell, give them anything. It won't make any difference.

One wonders, will sundry visiting leaders', past and present, be targeted in future? Or the railway stations, government buildings or wherever they decide to swagger. Probably not, as it would be a waste. Though if a Leyen/Michel/Euro-ninny were to be buried alive in a tunnel it might cause some to crack a smile. Seriously, is Uncle Sam in the habit of smiling on similar visits by anybody to any country he decides to bomb?

Posted by: DilNir | Jan 23 2023 17:52 utc | 15


Russia claimed to pick up a defector or two, so naturally the US aka NATO has to pick up a defector. Someone even more disappointed & disaffected whom will spill even more beans and bigger ones too!

Posted by: Chaka Khagan | Jan 23 2023 17:54 utc | 16

Price Cap on Russian Oil.

to avoid a complete cut-off of EU countries. Ms. Yellen developed a workaround “ Russian oil and gas can be exported “if transformed” in another jurisdiction.
Russia to ban oil resales under Western price cap – media
[via RT]
Domestic oil exporters will reportedly have to make sure buyers don’t use the mechanism for resale

Russian exporters may soon be forbidden from selling oil to buyers under the Western price cap mechanism, the Kommersant news outlet reported, citing government sources.
According to the report, the Ministry of Energy has prepared a draft decree obliging Russian legal entities and individuals to avoid Western-mandated oil price limit provisions in their contracts with foreign buyers. They will also have to ensure that these buyers, including traders and agents, comply with this requirement for the further resale of Russian oil.[.]
The contracts will also have to pass inspection at the Federal Customs Service. If the agency finds any violations, in particular, any mention of the price cap, it may ban the export of the products specified in the contracts.

Price cap by the G7 idiots. Allows the collective west G7 misleading main street that price cap reduces Russia revenues.

Except Production Costs per Barrel of Oil :
Saudi Arabia, Iran: <$10,
Iraq: <$12
Russia: <$20

Russia’s state budgets 2021-2024 forecast Oil Price @ $40.90

Poland knew the stats and was pushing for a price cap at $30/bl.

Who is hurting who?

Posted by: Likklemore | Jan 23 2023 17:54 utc | 17

Posted by: Likklemore | Jan 23 2023 17:02 utc | 5

According to Vladimir Soloviev, friend of Putin and "Kremlin propagandist": if ever German panzers roll over Ukraine and fire at Russians: "It won't be red line crossing: it'll be Sacred War"!

When you see Hungary quit NATO and/or EU, or if its army enters Transcarpathia, expect Russia to start shooting hypersonic missiles at NATO target within mere hours ...

Posted by: Greg Galloway | Jan 23 2023 18:20 utc | 18

@mauro | Jan 23 2023 17:33 utc | 12

"...has been subzero in northern England for most of the last three weeks."

Here in northern Italy too...

-13.5C in Southern Norway today. So much for warm winter.

Posted by: Norwegian | Jan 23 2023 18:22 utc | 19

There's fuckery afoot:

"The heat in Eastern Europe is unprecedented with more national records falling.

Over +20°C in the middle of January is simply extraordinary for this part of the world. Very impressive warmth surging through eastern Europe while western Europe chills."

Posted by: Irish | Jan 23 2023 18:34 utc | 20

@ 10
@ 12

Notice my specific reference was August 1939. Any idea what was transpiring then?

Nevertheless, this winter has been unusually warm.
How a ‘totally insane’ warm spell is upending winter around the world

Europe is experiencing a record-shattering warm spell, with meteorologists calling the current heat wave “totally insane” and “the most extreme event ever seen in European climatology.” On New Year’s Day, at least seven nations experienced their warmest January weather on record, with some cities in Spain and France sweating as temperatures rose to over 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

And despite a bone-chilling storm that passed over much of the United States around Christmas, temperatures remain higher than average in much of the South and New England. In New York City, visitors to Central Park got a taste of shorts weather as temperatures hit 66 degrees Wednesday.

An energy crisis averted in Europe.

It's from Wapo. Ignore the tie into global warming. BBC also ran a piece on the unusually warm winter.
It's the ENSO.

Skiers in Switzerland are on artificial snow. Here in the mid-Atlantic to North-East some ski hills are also using artificial snow.

I am north of the 45th and the snow plough guys are smiling over their winter contracts.
We are calling it, “Silly winter.”

Posted by: Likklemore | Jan 23 2023 18:42 utc | 21

Just posted an important breaking news story on the tail end of the last Uqraine thread.
Please all follow it up and analyse.
What malarky is this now.
F... if I know.

Posted by: Mark2 | Jan 23 2023 18:43 utc | 22

@Irish | Jan 23 2023 18:34 utc | 20

There's fuckery afoot:

"The heat in Eastern Europe is unprecedented with more national records falling.

Over +20°C in the middle of January is simply extraordinary for this part of the world. Very impressive warmth surging through eastern Europe while western Europe chills."

Reality check,49.665,31.405,6

Posted by: Norwegian | Jan 23 2023 18:51 utc | 23

USUKIS looking to pick a fight. The Plymouth Brethren say our excuse is that Britain hated Celts, Britain says its excuse is everybody hates us because we are Vikings. Israel says its excuse is everybody hates us because we are Khazars.

Why not fight eachother if you want a fight? Because they fight dirty. Nah we only fight nice guys.

Posted by: Giyane | Jan 23 2023 18:59 utc | 24

Today Putin addressed the EAEU heads of state as Russia is the EAEU's 2023 president. And what's stressed is "harmonization" of the UNION in all areas, but the socio-economic most importantly. Recall Iran with its free trade deal is now a de facto EAEU member with India soon to follow. IMO, it's paramount that Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan cease their quarrel over the Fergana Valley and treat it along with Uzbekistan as common territory for the quarrel only serves to divert resources, generate animosity instead of solidarity and stifle greatly needed development. Yes, that's easy to write yet hard to implement after decades of strife caused by Stalin who formed the borders there. Putin is Gung-ho as this excerpt suggests:

Our close integration has become a worthy response to such global problems exacerbated by the pandemic and the application of illegitimate sanctions by a number of countries, like poverty, climate change, scarcity of resources, including the most important ones – food, water, energy. Obviously, the Union has everything. opportunities to become one of the most powerful, independent, self-sufficient poles of the emerging multipolar world, to be the center of attraction for all independent states that share our values and seek to cooperate with the EAEU.

Of course we will do everything possible to further deepen integration at all directions - in the political, economic, industrial, financial and technological spheres. In this We consider it expedient to jointly assess the implementation of the existing ones "Strategic directions for the development of Eurasian economic integration until 2025" and this year to start preparing new ones long-term planning documents that will define the main vectors integration cooperation for the period up to 2030 and 2045.

Obviously that one of the most important strategic priorities of joint work should be to develop the technological potential of the EAEU member countries, to achieve genuine independence and self-sufficiency in this area. We propose to join forces in the development and implementation of advanced scientific and technical solutions in leading sectors economics, such as the automotive and chemical industries, transport mechanical engineering, microelectronics, aircraft construction, shipbuilding, pharmaceuticals, digital ecosystems, alternative energy, agricultural engineering, biotechnology and seed production.

Likewise on the agenda is the intensification of cooperation in the field of digital transformation. Thus, in particular, the launch of the Integrated Information System of the Eurasian Economic Community and supranational systems for monitoring the circulation of products will make it possible to identify and remove unsafe and low-quality goods from the Union market. It is necessary accelerate the process of harmonized introduction of e-legal in the Member States of the Union significant document flow, providing legal and technological conditions for mutual recognition of such documents. It is important that digital technologies and solutions in the field of economic activity are introduced in all EAEU countries on the basis of common principles and approaches, which it is advisable to consolidate separately an act of the Eurasian Intergovernmental Council.

As I've mentioned before, Putin's vision is to build a different type of Soviet Union that was previously always possible but never put into practice primarily because of political corruption generated by the age-old habits of elites. Most of those people have now passed from the scene and the newer generation seems to have learned what to do and what not to do. We shall see how well the lessons were learned over the next several years. IMO, a supranational form of nationalism formed around the idea of Eurasia needs to be promoted so the smaller nations won't feel being overshadowed by Russia, India and China. At the same time, there are examples of what not to do provided by the EU that need to be heeded, one of which Putin seems well aware of and that's to avoid forming a political union that suppresses the sovereignty of Union members.

As suggested, a merger between ASEAN and EAEU sees likely as does one between SCO and ASEAN, which will join most of Eurasia together. And then there's Africa, which will be another comment.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 19:00 utc | 25

Posted by: Stavrogin | Jan 23 2023 17:33 utc | 13

🇭🇺Journalists from Hungary report that the Kiev regime is conducting ethnic cleansing by forcibly mobilizing Hungarians — Mass mobilization of Hungarians has begun in the Transcarpathian region of Ukraine.

Over the past few days, military enlistment offices have been on duty in public places, and also conducted house-to-house and apartment-by-apartment rounds with summonses in the cities of Beregovo,Vinogradov and in the village of Surte.These Settlements are places of compact residence for the Hungarian diaspora, whose share of the local population is 30-50%.

Posted by: Down South | Jan 23 2023 19:07 utc | 26

Over +20°C in the middle of January is simply extraordinary for this part of the world.
@ Irish | Jan 23 2023 18:34 utc | 20

Andrej Flis, at Severe Weather Europe, has become my favorite long-term weather forecaster -- even though his recent prediction of a Sudden Stratospheric Warming (SSW) event in 2023 was just retracted:

Flis discusses how the Northern Hemisphere's polar vortex is currently squeezed (with splendid explanatory graphics). Though severely weakened, this winter's PV is contracting enough to stay intact, though displaced and bent like a kidney bean over the pole. Extraordinary, possibly unprecedented stratospheric warmth is forecast for Siberia this February. Should it happen, we'll find out what that means.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | Jan 23 2023 19:08 utc | 27

Kohlberg Kravis Roberts-tabloid "Bild" agitates against SPD chairman Rolf Mützenich, who opposes tank-deliveries to Ukraine:

Posted by: Apollyon | Jan 23 2023 19:12 utc | 28

current weather Looks like cold air from the north is currently blocked from moving into portions of Europe. Not sure how persistent the current pattern will be.

@upsetter | Jan 23 2023 16:37 utc | 1

Macgregor thinks offensive will start within a week, during dark of moon. Start with EW attack against surveillance assets and gps, then missile strikes, then force movements. We will see. Minimal release of official info reported by Outraged above may indicate something is afoot.

Posted by: the pessimist | Jan 23 2023 19:22 utc | 29

MI6 claims that Russia is planning to destroy the Dniper bridges. It's about time.

Posted by: Catdog | Jan 23 2023 19:23 utc | 30

@ Greg Galloway | Jan 23 2023 18:20 utc | 18

When you see Hungary quit NATO and/or EU, or if its army enters Transcarpathia, expect Russia to start shooting hypersonic missiles at NATO target within mere hours ...

Orban and ruling Hungarians are making smart war-avoiding moves, although them are pretty much christian right-wingers. Poland is the same, but worse with the tendency going Polish nationalistic to the core and all in with UK and NATO, but asking the territories - Polish in Ukraine have all the rights as Ukrainians though thru some obscure agreement. So stupid and deadly.

UK and the other kingdoms, probably even more inclined towards the far-right. Germany and France are weaselling through, being double faced ergo, far-right politics, but how do you explain that to their average citizen? Anarchy, in short.

What better time for Europe to reshuffle its borders in a series of blatant land grabs?
Fog hangs over it for sure, symbolically and practically, so no stand off weapons yet.

RF will let everybody know before and if anything happens. It is a long way to the war planned, but might be shortened if need is to prevent global catastrophically enhanced event.
So it seems.

Posted by: whirlX | Jan 23 2023 19:23 utc | 31

Arestovich is giving several interviews now that he is a non person.... stating the Russian SMO was an attempt at a bloodless operation where kittens were not to hurt. Etc.... Russian intelligence may have miscalculated the local reception to Russian forces

Posted by: Joe | Jan 23 2023 19:26 utc | 32

Barflies talking about a comment that I missed from Old Microbiologist make me want to go and look for it.

I remember a series of comments written under such a handle 3/12/2020 on Saker's site that was so fascinating I bookmarked it.

Posted by: chunga | Jan 23 2023 19:34 utc | 33

Lavrov's in South Africa and eld">">eld a presser after his talks today. Lavrov's statement regarding the status of relations was very positive:

We agreed to step up our efforts in a number of areas to more fully unlock the significant potential of our economic ties. We decided to intensify preparations for the 17th regular meeting of the Joint Intergovernmental Committee on Trade and Economic Cooperation in Moscow. Ms. Pandor is its co-chair from the South African side, and from our side it is the Minister of Natural Resources and Environment of the Russian Federation A.A. Kozlov. Particular attention at this meeting is planned to be paid to cooperation in the energy (including nuclear) and scientific and technical spheres, transport and other infrastructure, cooperation in the peaceful exploration of space, as well as the expansion and deepening of humanitarian ties. There's a demand for that. In our countries, people are interested in developing contacts.

We expressed our readiness to significantly increase the number of scholarships provided to South African colleagues within the framework of the federal budget....

We discussed in detail cooperation within BRICS, a structure that, in our common assessment, is an example of truly multilateral and multipolar diplomacy based on finding a balance of interests. We share the priorities of the South African Chairmanship, which began on January 1 this year and will be held under the motto "BRICS and Africa: Partnership for Accelerated Growth, Sustainable Development and Inclusive Multilateralism". We wish our colleagues success in implementing the announced plans. We will actively promote their implementation.

We talked about the settlement of existing conflicts on the African continent, including in the Great Lakes Region, the Central African Republic, Mali, South Sudan, and northern Mozambique. We have a common opinion that Africans should independently determine the ways to solve these problems on their continent. We note the active role of South Africa and its President Sergei Ramaphosa in a number of crisis situations. The world community has an obligation to support the directions and solutions chosen by African countries themselves, including within the framework of the African Union and various subregional organizations.

Russia will actively contribute to the normalization of the situation in Africa's hot spots, including by strengthening the peacekeeping capabilities of African countries. We train African peacekeepers in the relevant educational institutions. We help to equip the relevant missions of the African Union and other organizations.

We are interested in stepping up our dialogue on developing Russia's partnership with the African Union, as well as with sub-regional structures, including those where South Africa is an active participant.

There's more than just the above highlights. The Q&A portion featured yet more repetition of the same old stuff regarding Ukraine that most barflies know by now. Lavrov specifically took to task a representative of the UK Daily Mirror over the years of propaganda surrounding Ukraine and concluded,

"You can 'tear out' any episode from any story and make a career on it, work for the benefit of your government, but we try to approach events honestly. What was the result of the current situation in Ukraine is well known to all honest researchers."

There was one Q&A worth featuring here:

Question: How do our countries build economic cooperation in conditions when the West is essentially pursuing a neo-colonial policy towards African countries? Russian President Vladimir Putin has said a lot that eras have changed, but the Western mentality has not. What impact does this circumstance have on our bilateral projects? How are they evolving?

Sergey Lavrov: Russian President Vladimir Putin, in his description of the current situation in the world, did mention the revival of neocolonial policy. Or rather, not even a revival. It never went away. The "collective West" does not only apply to the developing world. What is being done with regard to the Russian Federation is an attempt to introduce elements of neo-colonial policy. The same applies to other large states, to which the Americans are constantly trying to create problems by imposing their illegitimate sanctions.

You know, a series of sanctions have already been imposed against the PRC. Everyone is threatened. State Department and White House officials have repeatedly said in the years leading up to the special military operation that any country (be it India, Turkey, or Egypt) should think twice before deepening its relations with the Russian Federation. What is this, if not an attempt at dictate and the complete absence of elementary, not even diplomatic, but simply human ethics.

Our relations, including with South Africa, affect these illegitimate sanctions. This is all a reflection of the mentality (which Pandor just mentioned): I am allowed everything I want, and I will see what you want to do.

Life goes on. There is a mutual interest of the two governments, companies of both countries in continuing joint projects in the field of natural resources, energy (I mentioned South Africa's plans in the development of nuclear energy, where we can be very useful on a mutually beneficial basis), peaceful space, infrastructure, high technologies, smart cities. Today, at the talks, N. Pandor said that South Africa is interested in Russian experience in this area.

It all comes with supply chains and financial services. We are actively working to create new mechanisms, tools that do not depend on the quirks and arbitrariness of our Western colleagues. It's all real. We are doing this with all our partners who want to cooperate honestly and do not want to be victims of unfair competition and outright abuse of the mechanisms of globalization, which were so proud of their Western colleagues.

Together, Russia and China are working to finish the liberation of Africa. How to tailor Africa's development while preserving Africa's natural heritage presents a challenge as much depends on the attitudes of Africans, and as Lavrov noted Africans are very diverse.

So Monday was clearly Big Picture Day that hopefully shows Ukraine is only one of many pressing problems needing to be solved so humanity can finally be freed from the several forms of slavery imposed upon it.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 19:35 utc | 34

James - Thanks

All - I do not want to give the impression I dislike Hungary. We love it here and the people are fantastic. But, like every country there are some things not all that great. On the whole though, since Orban goit his second chance things have dramatically improved. He added a 27% VAT which was used to pay off both the IMF and World Bank loans getting the US off our backs completely. He has arranged a separate supply of Russian natural gas through Turkstream into Serbia. He has renewd trade with Russia and is in the process of adding 2 more nuclear power plants curteousy of Russian low interest loans. He is building the largest EV battery factory in the world and we already manufacture a lot of autos including VW/Audi, Suzuki, and Mercedes. I have seenin my 13 years here things get better for everyone. The cars are newer and there is a lot of construction going on which is a good indication that there is excess capital being used wisely. I shop early at Aldi in our smallish (but very wealthy town) and it is packed with workers picking up their day's food before work. Most are Ukrainians, Romanians, or Serbians which I take to mean the pay is better here and jobs are available. There is zero unemployment and in fact more jobs than people so many work 2 jobs. Crime is nearly zero as well. So, to me remaining loyal to your societal norms and preventing immigrants to dilute your population seems like a very good thing. There is no graffiti and everyone respects everyone here. Everyone, no matter who, always gets everyone coming and going. They still say "kiss your hand" to the women which would be an insult in the US. I get greeted with "service" as I am a Doctor (Ph.D.) which is a sign of respect. All the streets are named after poets, writers, or political heroes. We even have a music school here for gifted students as well as a Handball school (Team Handball and water polo are big here). The children get sailing classes for free that live in proximity to Lake Balaton and we have world-class sailors and many gold medals.

What Orab is doing is trying to take the side of "State's Rights" and prevent the EU from becoming the United States of Europe. More or less he is alone in this. He also takes steps to ensure that Hungarians have a future and don't get hammered by the insane anti-Russian sanctions.

Miitarily, they only have 10k soldiers, sailors, and airmen. They have zero tanks or APCs, 6 Grippen jets, and 4 helicopters. The navy has 1 old WWII minesweeper on the Duna River. They are no military threat to anyone.

Posted by: Old Microbiologist | Jan 23 2023 19:37 utc | 35

Macgregor thinks offensive will start within a week, during dark of moon.
Posted by: the pessimist | Jan 23 2023 19:22 utc | 29

I think it's because nazis have a base on the moon and next week in Ukr is full moon, so nazis can't see from all the light

Posted by: rk | Jan 23 2023 19:38 utc | 36

Proper link for 34.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 19:39 utc | 37


Thoughts on a possible scenario? Once this current Russian offensive is over and Russia has inevitably secured to their satisfaction the liberation of the four territories of Eastern Ukraine, and if they don't want to push forward to take all of Ukraine themselves (which i think is their preference not to), who could then "invade" western Ukraine, and/or overthrow the current Ukrainian govt, and replace it with an acceptable governing body to negotiate a ceasefire and peace talks that the Russians would be ok with in terms of their de-nazification objective?

Who might be able to do that? a foreign nation (which ones)? a coalition protectorate perhaps? a totally new and innovative model of stop gap/transition governance maybe? a Ukrainian contingent maybe (including Arestovich perhaps)...

anyone hearing anything in the pipeline?

opinions on best case scenario?

Posted by: Irish | Jan 23 2023 19:39 utc | 38

Blitzkrieg (def. update):

Mach 9 or 10,734 kilometers/hr.

Remember the peace symbol or are you more into taking sides?

Posted by: Elmagnostic | Jan 23 2023 19:42 utc | 39

[email protected] a recent monkeywerx blog he names three civilian companies in the US that all perform contract weather modification over the US. Looking at the areas affected esp mid US, might be enough to push or manipulate the PV.

Cheers M

Posted by: sean the leprechaun | Jan 23 2023 19:42 utc | 40

So, re: all this excellent weather talk,

to whose advantage is it then that Ukraine is/be warmer than usual up until now (looks like a cold front coming in)?

and/or to whose advantage is it that Ukraine is about to freeze up again (maybe)?

Posted by: Irish | Jan 23 2023 19:47 utc | 41

Old Microbiologist @35 and previous thread--

Thanks for your very valuable appraisals of Hungary. From your info, it seems very unlikely Hungary would intervene in Ukraine. How likely is it that Orban will remain PM in the next round of elections?

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 19:53 utc | 42

TL&DR Time approaching to unleash the Dogs of War ? RF has overwhelming conventional forces, should it decide to execute ...

As expected, the 58th Combined Arms Army, advancing in the Southern Front, has used Reconnaissance in Force, Probing & Fixing attacks to determine the precise positions of the AFU units, especially strongpoints, weaknesses and the comms/flank responsibility/co-ordination gaps between adjacent units. 58th has then pinned AFU in its positions by 'holding on to its belt' at close quarters, whilst using its overwhelming indirect & direct Fire Support to rapidly attrit pinned defenders who have no opportunity to attempt retreat or withdraw whilst under sustained barrages/direct fires. The remnants once sufficiently weakened & isolated are, overrun. Rinse & Repeat. These tactics combined with overwhelming comparative manpower & combat power minimizes RF casualties whilst maintaining constant pressure and steady advance.

AFU has no effective response to this Situ.

RF has also used artillery, actual gun howitzers, in direct fire mode, lowered barrels at ranges of 200-300m. Point blank. This indicates that RF is confident in safely using valuable assets this way to reduce casualties in targeted assault and accelerate, by precise fire, rapid destruction of key entrenchments.

As posted previously, after highly probably reinforcing existing BTGs with 2x Motor Rifle (Mechanized Infantry) Companies (Coy) each, mobilized active reservists & volunteers, even after allocating ~150,000 to fulfill FEBA rear support/service & other tasks that had further reduced BTGs infantry manpower, 3 x RF Army (~4 Divisions+) formations would likely be formed.

What is identified as 'the' 58th Combined Arms Army is one of the three Armies (it's responsibilities in Southern Military District fulfilled by Mobilization, not abandoned). This means two more, possibly even three, Combined Arms Armies are forward deployed and held in ready reserve. Given the example of 58th, this would suggest one of the extant Armies from each of the Central & Eastern Military Districts would be the basis of these newly formed/merged formations. Given the 58th in the South, almost certain one each deployed in the East of FEBA (Center) & in the North (Belarus) (Possible 4th ?)

When the opportunity presents these additional Armies will be committed, as for the 58th, whilst existing extant RF formations remain engaged, pressing AFU, in contact at the FEBA.

Note, the 58th Army & other two (3?) are formed and operating at the Division & Army level as formations & re combat & maneuver. No more BTGs & ad hoc occasional Brigades.

The AFU when it actually existed was limited to Brigade Ops, as mentioned previously, is no longer patently obviously a functional combat effective force. Lost combined arms maneuver capability & cohesion, combat effectiveness, as an Army ~6 months ago. Given mass KIA, & MIA that rapidly convert(~30-60%) to KIA given delayed & inadequate medical support, even timely battlefield first-Aid & trauma support, along with Brigades suffering ~70%+ casualties before being withdrawn from the line & reconstituted with untrained Volksturm forced conscripts, again & again, up to 7 times over ?

Such units can function minimally for a time in static, heavily entrenched positions, yet have little capability to survive engagement with Division/Army sized, fully capable & equipped combined arms formations once forced into maneuver as opposed to static warfare. This is also the case for AFU units entrenched elsewhere all along the FEBA once their flanks are threatened or exposed by breakthrough. The defensive lines to fall back upon get ever weaker & less developed as compared to current & previous, overwhelmed/overrun, even more quickly.

Then there is only open ground facing three(4?) Combined Arms Maneuver Armies on the prowl, as the rest of RF at the current FEBA reform, consolidate & form up and follow on as a second echelon.

The current War in Ukraine for the OUN-B Nazi proxies of Empire is lost. Yet ...

NATO has been thoroughly outed as much a Paper Tiger militarily as USA now. The parlous state of NATO's militaries has been exposed. Where did that US/NATO ~$2Trillion/year combined go to over the previous three decades ? Well, looking back, NATO had no prospects of successful contestation at the height of the Cold War, it is not even close now, in 2023.

The Coalition of the 'Rabid Russo-phobic Nine' (Plus 'We've got your back US') seem to have no comprehension of this situ. Or do they, being led by UK/US ?

Again, during the height of the Cold War the Baltic States & Poland, absolute best case, would be overrun, annihilated, in at most 48hours if general war broke out. The situ now at least the same, highly probably far worse. Obviously US/UK & the rest do not appear concerned too much re prodding the Bear, as their territories would not be the ground the battles would be fought over if the 'Rabid Nine' became too 'willing'. Much hubris & too clever by half.

Given 80% of NATO, yet especially Turkey & now Hungary, have all but declared no further support for the Ukraine War, if the 'Rabid Nine' continue to escalate & provoke, it is not unlikely that RF may decide it's time to revise Poland/Baltic States status post '45, and provide an object lesson for Finland & Sweden, whilst dramatically reducing the existential risk of Aegis Ashore & Tomahawk nuclear tipped cruise missiles launched from Poland/Baltic States. ~5min flight time.

Majority of NATO members have demonstrated reluctant, modest actual commitment to the US instigated and stage managed year old Ukraine conflict ... would they risk ALL for Poland & the Baltics, aggressively overreaching now ?

Has such demonstration of commitment occurred so far, will they risk a roll of the dice, whilst the odds are stacked against them ?

Acta non verba!

RF has been clearly stating recently if RF territory is seized (Donbass/Crimea) it is War, ultimately up to including nuclear weapons if conventional military was unable to regain such territories re RF constitutional obligations.

Continual provocations & stepped escalations against RF whilst disingenuously asserting non-belligerence whilst calling for more War with Russia, funding & aggressively arming & re-arming the belligerent, Ukraine, appear to wearing very thin indeed.

The threat from NATO is truly now existential given plans to invest significantly in NATOs militaries over coming years to address it's parlous state. To what purpose ? Another go, a Take II re a War to destroy & dismember Russia ?

If so, 'tis best be dealt with now, rather than risk the waning of the RFs current comparative advantage & active deployed & alert forces status re a currently unprepared Poland/Baltics, & wider weak NATO that has now openly committed itself to actively prepare for future War.

Poland via US, alone, intends to deploy a force of 1,000 Abrams MBTs and a fleet of F-16s.

RF has arms & materiel pre-positioned, & activated & tested secure supply lines, on the ground, on the continent, not the other side of the Atlantic.

In any case, excluding forces extant along the FEBA & in Theater, & three new Armies (4?) ... ~85% of RF regular standing formations have yet to be committed ... along with ~62,000+ Belarus forces:

1st Guards Tank Army,
2nd Guards Combined Arms Army,
5th & 6th Combined Arms Armies,
8th & 20th Guards Combined Arms Armies,
29th/35th/36th/41st/49th Combined Arms Armies,
Special Operation Forces (SSO),
810th Guards Naval Infantry Brigade,
40th/61st/155th Naval Infantry Brigades,
7th Guards Mountain Air Assault Division,
76th/98th/106th Guards Air Assault Divisions,
45th Guards Spetsnaz Brigade,
11th/31st/83rd Guards Air Assault Brigades,
2nd & 10th Spetsnaz Brigades, and
3rd & 22nd Guards Spetsnaz Brigades ...

Hm, wonder what the elite First Guards Tank Army is up to lately ? A winter vacation in Belarus, a short distance from Poland & the Baltics, perhaps ?

If NATO/EU does not step back, cease continual escalation, false non-belligerency whilst evermore shrill war rhetoric and all but on the battlefield, and now 're-armament', Girding for future War ?

RF may calculate the time has come to again throw the first punch, perceiving a wider War is coming regardless, & pre-empt again, this time in Poland & the Baltics.

Posted by: Outraged | Jan 23 2023 19:54 utc | 43

Irish @41--

IMO, it's better for Russia since it's the side on the offensive. It's very difficult to dig new entrenchments in frozen ground with hand tools and it's easier to channelize and thus attack armored vehicles when they're restricted to roads. There are other reasons, but those are the main ones, IMO. But, given the amount of attrition already sustained by Ukies, it probably doesn't matter as they're doomed.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 20:00 utc | 44

Best case scenario: Russia keeps slowly taking territory, rebuilding most everything it takes. The US gets bored with the conflict, declares victory, and moves on.

The war moves on to the economic front, where we fight over who can cause the most prosperity in Latin American and African nations.

Might as well dream big :)

Posted by: Woke American | Jan 23 2023 20:02 utc | 45

upsetter @ 1

Most recent Douglas Macgregor analysis:

Thanks, great stuff maybe the best I’ve heard yet from MacGregor.

Also this w/ Ritter. He can be pretty hyper and scattershot, maybe he took his Ritalin and this is his best video. If I came across it here then kudos to whoever linked it first:

Scott Ritter: NATO is a Suicide Pill for the World… Pray that Russia Wins

Both MacGregor and Ritter are ever more committed to Russia’s side, that’s how you know real war is nigh, no more gray in life, just black and white, time to choose. They are definitely noble people not wanting to see their own country and the world reduced to a future way shittier than even the present one, if not annihilation.

Keeps going like this I see this scenario: MacGregor shows up knocking on Snowden’s door asking if he can sleep on the couch for a little bit till he gets himself sorted out, and Snowden goes, "Ritter got here yesterday and claimed dibs on the couch. I have one of those inflatable mattresses, if you manage to blow it up you can sleep on the floor for a bit."

Someone yesterday mentioned zombie friends trapped in the matrix, about the best you can do is hand them these two vids by true USA patriots and hope it red pills them.

Posted by: LightYearsFromHome | Jan 23 2023 20:02 utc | 46

Not the Onion.
France is going through an existential crisis. The gas prices are too much to pay to enable Baguettes to be produced. Bakers are going Bankrupt in droves. (as told to me by a French political "activist" today)

One of the things that make a country doubt the value of it's leadership. Reality hurts the pomp of politicians. More than a food, a symbol.

All we need now is madame Macron to say "let them eat brioche" (cake) and history will repeat itself.

GEN Laura J. Richardson, The General in charge of USSOUTHCOM has declared that they are trying to get South American countries that still have Soviet tanks, to supply them to Ukraine in "exchange" for Abrams. 9 countries including Nicaragua, Venezuela and Cuba (???) Weird !

MI5 or 6 has "released" a Russian plan (with maps) to hit ALL the bridges in Ukraine at once. At least they know where the bridges are.
Also according to "sources" the Ukies are hiding ammunition and weapons around and inside the remaining Ukrainian Nuclear plants.
"It is reported that the Russian Armed Forces landed in boats last night west of Kamenskoye in the rear of the nationalists. And in a day they liberated Kamianske south of Zaporozhye"

All in a day's work.

Posted by: Stonebird | Jan 23 2023 20:02 utc | 47

🇺🇦🪖📄Innovation of Odessa military enlistment offices.

They ride ambulances and catch people for mobilization

A fake ambulance was seen in Odessa, on which employees of the local military enlistment office moved.

Video embedded in Tweet

🇺🇦🪖📄Thanks to the public response and telegram channels, the actions of military commissars will be checked, they violate the law.

"Odessa military commissars used an ambulance to deliver summonses. An internal audit is being conducted" — speaker of the "Operational Command “South”Natalia Gumenyuk

“There is no medical equipment in it, it was transferred on mobilization as a vehicle. Yes, it negatively affects the image. An internal audit is being conducted… If disciplinary violations are revealed, the perpetrators will be brought to disciplinary responsibility,” Gumenyuk added.(We have the video with her statement we don't have time and we can't translate it for now)

Posted by: Down South | Jan 23 2023 20:05 utc | 48

Estonia plans to close the Gulf of Finland for russia, Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu says.

Estonia is planning to introduce a coastal "contiguous zone" in the Gulf of Finland, which will cut off russian shipping and allow the country to inspect russian warships and civilian vessels.

However this is considered international waters and could start a war. One that Article 5 wouldn't protect the tiny Baltic nation from.

Someone should tell Estonia, if they try to start a war by trying to blockade international waters with mines or whatever means, it's on them.

Posted by: unimperator | Jan 23 2023 20:05 utc | 49

The two maps of bridges I mentioned in @47

Posted by: Stonebird | Jan 23 2023 20:06 utc | 50

unimperator | Jan 23 2023 20:05 utc | 49

Estonia has also given ALL of it's artillery to Ukraine.
Non compos mentis or "nuts"..

Posted by: Stonebird | Jan 23 2023 20:12 utc | 51

Today, Military Summary (Dima) says that Russia has stopped in the South.
Dima says that Ukro human reserves are still immense.

Posted by: solgar | Jan 23 2023 20:13 utc | 52

@ Outraged | Jan 23 2023 19:54 utc | 43

RF has been clearly stating recently if RF territory is seized (Donbass/Crimea) it is War, ultimately up to including nuclear weapons if conventional military was unable to regain such territories re RF constitutional obligations.

Every attempt to enter Ukraine by NATO troops will be a deliberately provoking high jump over any red line.
NATO made Ukraine win Crimea for them. That. Never. Happens.

They deserve to lose badly as they failed do the right thing, but tried everything else, instead.

Posted by: whirlX | Jan 23 2023 20:16 utc | 53

@ Stonebird | Jan 23 2023 20:06 utc | 50

The destruction and then re-construction of infrastructure always offers a powerful boom for future economic activity.
Haliburton and Brown & Root must be pissed. I imagine they likely had the very same plans.
Watch all your pension plan and mutual fund investments in the next few years.
"I have a bridge I could sell you (in the Ukraine)" takes on a whole new kind of legitimacy...?!#@?
War is Economics is what I think Orwell meant.

Posted by: Irish | Jan 23 2023 20:17 utc | 54

@ Irish | Jan 23 2023 19:39 utc | 38

Poland, leading the Coalition of the 'Rabid Nine', on US/UK behalf, with the Tank & Mech Brigades they have declared they will give to Ukraine, the last of their ex-Soviet arms, unilaterally ... yet crewed by Poles & supported by Polish regulars, under some inane R2P threatened Galician OUN-B Nazi civilians, in fear of another imagined Bucha?

Posted by: Outraged | Jan 23 2023 20:23 utc | 55

-6 degrees today where we live in the UK, which is colder than average, more freezing air arriving after a few days of warmer weather. I don’t think the thaw will help Ukraine, Russia has been talking up the problems but I think it’s partly misdirection. If there is an offensive I agree that unused technology will be used to blind/jam the NATO Ukrainian ISR, for a critical time window of between 48-72 hours. Russia will also it’s Strategic Air Forces, to directly aid the offensive and attack with a concentration of force using regimental and divisional assets, perhaps reviving RAGs and DAGs. Note to NATO: game changing weapon systems only have a limited timespan to maximise their force-multiplying abilities, before they begin to be countered. I also expect Russian vehicles to be sporting armour upgrades after reverse engineering NATO AT weapons, captured or bought since the conflict began.

I would also expect to see more use of air-assault units to either seize key locations or create blocking detachments and a targeting of the second and third lines of defence which have had to be reinforced or created under improved Russian ISR. Magregor’s comment about the moon suggests possible a night/early morning assault, which might explain the time taken to train the newly mobilised troops and the deployment of the latest gen tanks.

Finally, I think some Ukrainian commanders can see the writing on the wall and might be tempted to, or are already, cooperating with the Russians out of a desire to end the butchery, rid the country of the cocaine dwarf and send his Nazi minders and minions packing, or scattered across the steppe. The coming offensive and the latest NATO reinforcement transfusion might galvanise them into taking action now.

Final point, I don’t think the Russians misread the mood in Ukraine, pre-invasion, I think it was more that their intelligence officers had been turned and baited the trap with duff info. Russia sails in with a light weight, almost casual approach, gets clobbered by UA troops trained to attack the straggling columns, who are humiliated and stuck and then sanctions would inflict the coup-de-grace. I certainly remember a large number of Russian intel guys being arrested shortly after the original plan went pear-shaped.

Posted by: Milites | Jan 23 2023 20:25 utc | 56

Posted by: Outraged | Jan 23 2023 19:54 utc | 43

Thanks for the info compilation. Watched a couple of videos on Zaporizhe front. It seems there's no hurry in advancing. UAF doesn't have any solid defensive lines (as in continuous concreted bunkers, like Maginot line). They take their time pinpointing and obliterating all separate and isolated concrete fortifications, then moving the front forward.

I really doubt UAF can do anything to stop them, even with the supposed new Nato APCs. They are setting Zap city as fortification, but it isn't compulsory to get stuck in urban combat there, at this time.

Posted by: unimperator | Jan 23 2023 20:28 utc | 57

Someone has some explaining to do.

" In November 2022, Russia invested $2.092 billion in US government securities , thereby exceeding the figure of the previous month. This follows from the documents of the US Department of the Treasury, TASS reports .

According to the agency, in October the volume of Russian investments amounted to $2.034 billion, in September - $2.015 billion.

As the agency notes, since March 2022, the volume of investments has been at a level slightly above $2 billion, while in February it was $3.753 billion.

Long-term bonds in Russian investments in November accounted for $80 million, in October - $25 million. Short-term bonds - $2.012 billion, in October - $2.009 billion.

Since November 1, the Bank of Russia has tightened restrictions for Russians when buying securities from "unfriendly countries". The Central Bank banned such transactions if the purchase of securities will significantly increase their share in the investor's portfolio.

The Russian regulator noted that from the beginning of 2023, unqualified investors will be prohibited from conducting any transactions aimed at increasing their position in securities of issuers from “unfriendly countries”. "

Posted by: Deplorable Commissar | Jan 23 2023 20:29 utc | 58

" I don’t think the thaw will help Ukraine, Russia has been talking up the problems but I think it’s partly misdirection.

Posted by: Milites | Jan 23 2023 20:25 utc | 56 "

However, NATO is not capable of " talking up their problems " for mis-direction purposes ?

Posted by: Deplorable Commissar | Jan 23 2023 20:32 utc | 59

@ james 9

Many thanks for referencing Old Microbiologist post 216 in previous thread. Fascinating. Over the years I've enjoyed the contributions of Old Mocrobiologist.

My view is the EU is an error in construct.
The Poles v. Germans with a big angst demanding of the Germans $1.4 trillion for war reparations; Hungarians' Buyers remorse. Less than 3 years for the breakup.

+ + + + +

@ Greg Galloway 18

Sadly, the neocons are on the page titled "He is bluffing."

Posted by: Likklemore | Jan 23 2023 20:38 utc | 60

"A merger between EAEU and ASEAN" damn, what a stupid idea. South Asia isn't even part of the Eurasian landmass, there has never been even the slightest hint of this" merger" ( and btw, what would that even have do with any "Soviet Union" that Putin supposedly want to create ?). This is what you get when you type without thinking at all. There will be no "Eur(south)asia". also, the idea of creating "nationalism" by using economic unions is doomed to fail, differences between nations (languages, cultures etc...) cannot be overcome this way, that was an awful idea. The only "Eurasia" as a unity/country possible would unite only Russia, Kazakhstan, Belarus and Kyrgyzstan which are the closest post soviet republics. Neither Uzbekistan ( which threatened to cut relations with Belarus after Lukashenko suggested it) nor Turkmenistan/ Azerbaijan would want to be in it.

Posted by: Phariah | Jan 23 2023 20:40 utc | 61

Erdogan just said Sweden can forget Turkey ratifying their Nato membership, after burning the Quran.

Sweden in reality, due to various economic and realpolitik realities doesn't want to join, they found a very convenient way to avoid it.

Posted by: unimperator | Jan 23 2023 20:41 utc | 62

Irish | Jan 23 2023 20:17 utc | 54

"War is Economics is what I think Orwell meant.
Some pigs are fatter than others, and deserve to be de- or re-constructed first by obese corporations? yeuuck

Posted by: Irish | Jan 23 2023 20:17 utc | 54

Posted by: Stonebird | Jan 23 2023 20:43 utc | 63

Looks like the remaining wheels are coming off...

IntelSlava reports:

"Ukrainian media claim that the deputy head of Zelensky's office, Kyrylo Tymoshenko, wrote a letter of resignation

Also, the heads of the Dnepropetrovsk, Zaporozhye, Kherson and Sumy regions of Ukraine resigned."

Posted by: Opport Knocks | Jan 23 2023 20:55 utc | 64

@Opport Knocks | Jan 23 2023 20:55 utc | 64


If so:

Rats fleeing the ship? Perhaps worried about what the next week will bring...

Posted by: the pessimist | Jan 23 2023 20:58 utc | 65

“Posted by: Outraged | Jan 23 2023 17:15 utc | 7”

I’ve always wondered about the terminology used in those reports. “Over 40” if taken literally means it couldn’t possibly be less than 41. True, or just a wild estimate? And no mention of an upper limit, so could it have been 80, 100, or even 200 reported as “over 40” in the report? “Up to 70” if taken literally means it couldn’t possibly be 71 or higher. True, or just a wild estimate? And no mention of a lower limit, so could it have been 50, 30, or even just half a dozen reported as “up to 70” in the report?

In the understandable absence of precise accurate numbers, I wish they would give upper and lower limits, or at least be consistent in the wording. The way it’s stated, and especially switching between them within the same report, conveys almost nothing useful about the actual numbers.

Posted by: Dalit | Jan 23 2023 20:59 utc | 66

Orban is secure and faces little risk in the next election unless something really bad happens. I think he is predicting the downfall of the leaders of the EU Commission and may get some relief after the leaders of most EU countries either get replaced internally by the voters or something worse. Orban is at high risk of assassination by the US though. The same for Vuvic and Erdogan. The neocon rules mandate you are either with us or against us and there are no limits to what the US will try against perceived enemies. Our new President of Hungary is equal to the task and I am delighted to see her in this position.

On the whole people are satisfied enough. There are no viable alternatives. The US poured a ton of money to get Marki Zoy elected and he wasn't even re-elected in his own town as mayor. He was a WEF young leader educated at Columbia so basically an American.

Posted by: Old Microbiologist | Jan 23 2023 20:59 utc | 67

[email protected]

Appears that Orwell's 1984 vision in 1984 is developing a new twist in that Eurasian national sovereignty is being given substance in V.V. Putin's address.

Posted by: aristodemos | Jan 23 2023 21:02 utc | 68

From RT opinion piece on Wagner group 'terrorist' designation:

Y. Prigozhin "...The Wagner PMC has not committed any crimes. Others spend their days trying to pin various crimes on us in different parts of the world. But, unlike America’s paramilitary forces, the Wagner PMC eliminates only enemies of peace and commits no crimes. Of course, if you employ double standards, you can dig up dirt on anyone. ...

... Most world powers try not to clash with America. Those regimes that do fight back are usually declared anti-democratic, then criminal, and then terrorist. PMC Wagner is not a country or a regime; rather it is a young and unbridled force, which is why it’s so feared by the Americans. They tried to destroy this force at Deir ez-Zor [Syria] in 2018, but it has recovered its spirit and is able to look into the eyes of the personification of global evil without fear.

It is very important to note that we have never behaved aggressively towards the Americans, but, nevertheless, we have not accepted rudeness from them. On more than one occasion, we have caught armed groups and American intelligence officers who tried to harm the Wagner PMC and organized assassination attempts. Each time we kicked their asses and let them go in peace (there is plenty of video footage), and, before sending them home, we fed them lunch and dinner.

That’s why the Americans are perplexed: we don't touch them, but we also don't let them push us around. That's why they are so upset. We don’t want what's theirs, but we won't give up what's ours. Oh, man, you really hit a nerve. I think I've answered in full."

Posted by: the pessimist | Jan 23 2023 21:14 utc | 69

Of course the US is the Nord Stream saboteur.
It's clear EU countries:

1)do as the US instructs.
2)do not do other than the US allows.
3)1 & 2 cover it all. There's no number 3.
4)same as number 3 if there was one.

Posted by: Elmagnostic | Jan 23 2023 21:14 utc | 70

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 19:00 utc | 25 One of the most nonsensical/ridiculous comments I,ve ever seen on this site.

Posted by: Phariah | Jan 23 2023 21:15 utc | 71

Posted by: unimperator | Jan 23 2023 20:05 utc | 49

...allow the country to inspect russian warships...

ROFL. Historically this is also know as expedient procedure of declaring war.

"Not a Onion article" disclaimer should be placed before any western official statements lately.

Posted by: Abe | Jan 23 2023 21:17 utc | 72

Is there some competition going on "who will start war with Russia next" we don't know about? Has Estonia some insider information?

Posted by: Abe | Jan 23 2023 21:19 utc | 73

Within minutes of the NordStream explosions, the guy who thanked USA has again unzipped his lips.

Poland considered partitioning Ukraine

Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki has denied the claim, urging Radoslaw Sikorski to retract and “weigh his words”

RT: Former Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski has suggested that the government in Warsaw considered partitioning Ukraine in the first weeks of the military conflict between Kiev and Moscow. His comments came in an interview with Radio ZET on Monday, prompting a strong retort from the country’s prime minister, Mateusz Morawiecki.

Sikorski was asked if the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) government had ever entertained the idea of dividing up Ukraine. He replied by stating that there was “a moment of hesitation in the first 10 days of the war, when we all didn’t know how it would go, that maybe Ukraine would fall.”

“Had it not been for the heroism of Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky and the help of the West, things could have been different,” Sikorski said.

His remarks soon drew a reaction from Polish Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki, who accused Sikorski of behaving “like a Russian propagandist.”

“The former foreign minister must weigh his words. I expect these disgraceful statements to be withdrawn. I call on the opposition to dissociate themselves from Radoslaw Sikorski's declaration,” Morawiecki tweeted.

You bet it remains on the agenda.

The first Action Step.

Poland will partition make an attempt to grab western Ukraine and it will be a free-for-all shootout.

Posted by: Likklemore | Jan 23 2023 21:24 utc | 74

@Abe | Jan 23 2023 21:19 utc | 73

The 'Baltic Tigers' are most eager for their leash holder to fight the Bear on their behalf and compete to see who will take credit for lighting the match. Their incessant mewing is deemed useful I guess.

Posted by: the pessimist | Jan 23 2023 21:25 utc | 75

[email protected]

You asked for it: "Best case scenario". The wiser course for Russia would be to continually move in on the depleted Ukraine forces until such time as someone in Kiev (perhaps a military takeover) requests surrender terms. Russia might then inform them that all heavily ethnic Russian oblasts would revert to the principles of referenda for the inhabitants to decide whether they would prefer to become members of the RF, or to NovoUkrainia; a semi-independent republic in general congress with the RF and Belarus.

NovoUkrainia would likely include all primarily Kievan Rus originating Ukrainian dialect speaking peoples. This new entity would eschew each and every contract and treaty with the collective West, in order to escape from the indebtedness occurred by the puppet regimes since 2014, most especially including all land deals with major Western corporations whose plan is to take over some of the richest agricultural lands in the planet and expose them to various forms of chemical warfare upon the biozone.

Additional to these decisions, it is logical to presume that all three parties to the compact would officially divorce Galicia and portions of Volhynia which are comprised of subjects who are in league with the Uniate compact with the Vatican and more particularly which are politically dominated by the historically genocidal Banderites. This divorce would see to it that this new entity, Banderistan, would be disarmed with the exception of basic intrinsic police protection (with no secret police) and would agree to a status of full neutrality. Rewarded for this new form of guaranteed governance, the new political entity would receive from the three contracting entities: NovoUkrainia, Belarus and the Russian Federation; a guarantee of military protection should any outside entity commit acts of aggression against this new political entity.

Posted by: aristodemos | Jan 23 2023 21:28 utc | 76

Smells like a civil war or infighting in Ukraine. Something strange is happening, some politicians appear to want to flee the sinking ship and have resigned en masse, but the security apparatus doesn't want to allow anyone to go.

Perhaps they get cleaned up by the morning, perhaps it explodes into chaosm

Posted by: Boo | Jan 23 2023 21:28 utc | 77

Passing this on...not sure what to make of it yet if it turns out accurate.

Breaking news: Ukranian media, such as Strana, reports that the deputy head of the President's Office, Kyrylo Tymoshenko, offered to resign from his post.

In his place, they plan to appoint the head of the military administration of the Kiev region, Alexei Kuleba, to the post.

In addition, the heads of administrations of Sumy, Dnepropetrovsk, Zaporozhye and Kherson regions, which are associated with Kyrylo Tymoshenko, may resign.

There is no official confirmation of this information yet. This would be a major purge/split in the government. We shall remind you that there was a serious confrontation between the various departments of Ukraine's non-government agencies, including sweeping accusations of corruption, the conflict between Zaluzhnyy and Zelenskyy, as well as the war between the SBU and the State Security Service of Ukraine (SBU).

Ukrainian media claim that the deputy head of Zelensky's office, Kyrylo Tymoshenko, wrote a letter of resignation Also, the heads of the Dnepropetrovsk, Zaporozhye, Kherson and Sumy regions of Ukraine resigned.


Something is clearly happening or expected in Ukraine: following the mass resignations, the National Security and Defense Council banned the travel of civil servants, security officials and deputies abroad.

Posted by: knighthawk | Jan 23 2023 21:30 utc | 78

@ Dalit | Jan 23 2023 20:59 utc | 66

RF MOD doesn't do nor interested in body count reports. They only report confirmed KIA at the FEBA, not throughout Theater. They don't count vehicle/platform crews, etc, with rare exceptions. They don't report KIA unless related to a selected reported engagement Platoon sized or above, excepting SF/Recon/DRG small teams. The clear intent is descriptive/informative, not bean-counter precision. Hence they are throughout deliberately & significantly under-reporting AFUs casualties from Day 1. Both RF & AFU have political & strategic military reasons for downplaying AFU's actual casualties, Theater wide, daily & in toto.

@ Phariah | Jan 23 2023 21:15 utc | 71

An illiterate troll. :(

Posted by: Outraged | Jan 23 2023 21:30 utc | 79

Phariah @61--

Thanks for the great guffaw your comment provoked.

Outraged @43--

Thanks for that excellent contribution.

A question that's dogged me ever since Russia's December 2021 security proposals remains: What will Russia do when the Outlaw US Empire/NATO say no as will surely be done to removing their missiles from Poland and Romania? Lavrov said that refusal to deal honestly with the proposals would necessitate a "military technical operation;" that outcome I presume still pertains. Of course, the situation is more complicated now with Russia's operation to liberate historic Russian regions of the artificial state of Ukraine, but the need to deal with those NATO members bordering Russia must still be addressed for Russian security. Russia's had many years of dealing with the Balts, and IMO finds them just as disgusting as Galicians, and the Poles are similar to Galicians too. Meaning Russia doesn't want to have to govern them but also doesn't want to be the perpetrator of massive ethnic cleansing--genocide--which would make Russia genuinely as evil as Hitlerian Germany and its allies. Thus, what to do? As you describe, those states are rabid, and usually the solution for dealing with rabid animals is to kill them. But as I explained above, that solution won't fly. And a significant number of ethnic Russians reside within the Baltics in conditions little better than Ukraine.

The only solution for the Baltics I see is some sort of agreement where they agree to remain unfriendly but agree to desist from war or hosting/having weapons that threaten Russia/Union State's security. Poland is another problem altogether. Ideally, NATO would disintegrate, but IMO it will take more than Turkey and Hungary leaving to cause that to occur. Ideas?

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 21:38 utc | 80

@ Old Microbiologist | Jan 23 2023 20:59 utc | 67

.There are no viable alternatives.

If people are happy, they do not need an alternative, unless you are the rest of EU.

I agree that Hungary in last 15 years is getting stronger and things are going on better.
But I also remember the hype where young foreigners were buying amazing and big apartments
in Budapest for 50.000 Deutsche Mark in early 90's. Balaton villas went for VW Golf Cabrio in an exchange. Like in all "liberated" East European countries.

So yes, life is good near Balaton where it has been for many decades cool tourist attraction, developed area, but having travelled a bit around myself it gets rather shabby towards Ukraine. I think that rurally is a bit different, so maybe with this goes the tolerance, however it gets better now as they can sell and trade wonders with Ukraine and some crumbs are still there.
Hungary is a big player in pretty influential regions in South-Central Europe all the way to Greece. Under Orban it got rapidly developed, he brought quite some money in his country. He learned from the history that Ceaucescu also didn't leave Romania indebted.

On the sunny side, I really think that Hungarians are paying back some old debt to Austrians sticking up for common oil and gas prices. Hey, Austro-Hungarian Empire, sounds familiar.

I think you are right that maybe neutrality is also a choice. That means leaving NATO. If Orban manages to slip out of this towards neutral position he would be Tatar Orban the Hun king for his people.

Posted by: whirlX | Jan 23 2023 21:43 utc | 81

" From RT opinion piece on Wagner group 'terrorist' designation:

" They tried to destroy this force at Deir ez-Zor [Syria] in 2018, but it has recovered its spirit and is able to look into the eyes of the personification of global evil without fear. "

I guess hundreds of Wagnerites and Syrian troops did get blown into oblivion by the US after all.

" Each time we kicked their asses and let them go in peace (there is plenty of video footage), and, before sending them home, we fed them lunch and dinner.

That’s why the Americans are perplexed: we don't touch them, but we also don't let them push us around. That's why they are so upset. "

Actually, the Americans are perplexed that after having Russians killed you would feed and release them. Why not reciprocate ? Why not hold them ? Why are US assets always treated with " kid gloves " by Russia and released ? Including, most recently, "Nazis ".

Posted by: Deplorable Commissar | Jan 23 2023 21:44 utc | 82

" A question that's dogged me ever since Russia's December 2021 security proposals remains: What will Russia do when the Outlaw US Empire/NATO say no as will surely be done to removing their missiles from Poland and Romania?

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 21:38 utc | 80 "

Not a damn thing. Russia wont even touch a single Khazarian plane out of fear of the US.

Posted by: Deplorable Commissar | Jan 23 2023 21:48 utc | 83

Karlof1 - my suggestions is SMOs for the other unfriendly former Soviet SSRs with Russian-speaking minorities (Baltics and Moldova, maybe some of the Caucuses and Central Asian ones if needed). I do believe the Russian-speaking minorities in these countries are waiting with bated breath for the Ukraine SMO to conclude so that they can free from the yoke of NATOstan as soon as possible. NATO is going to scream ethnic cleansing either way (as they are doing about Ukraine), so might as well allow some good to come of it.

In this Brave New World, agreements with NATO and NATO regimes are useless. Anything less than full control (absorption) is the same as leaving things up to chance (think what would happen if Lukashenko is deposed in a color revolution).

Posted by: R3DP1LL3R | Jan 23 2023 21:49 utc | 84

There is an interesting article from Kiev Independent which cannot be labeled as pro-Russian where loss of Soledar and dangers to Bakhmut are acknowledged.

Posted by: Curious Russian | Jan 23 2023 21:49 utc | 85

karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 19:53 utc | 42
>>…”How likely is it that Orban will remain PM in the next round of elections?”
Do they have mail-in ballots??????

Posted by: Melaleuca | Jan 23 2023 21:51 utc | 86

[email protected]

Before even reading the bit of text, I commented to myself: "That's an act of war". Hopefully, for the sake of the people of Estonia is that one of their "elder brothers" lets their leaders know that its a no-go action and that Big Brother and the Holding Company does not have their backs.

Posted by: aristodemos | Jan 23 2023 21:55 utc | 87

Good point Melaleauca (#86)

Everything really goes back to the Dems and their rigging of our 2020 elections. If they had not done what they did, Trump would still be POTUS and the world would not find itself at war.

Posted by: R3DP1LL3R | Jan 23 2023 21:56 utc | 88

aristodemos @76--

Very inventive solution. But IMO, solving Ukraine is mcu easier than the further problem I wrote @80. Do please think on that one too.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 21:57 utc | 89

solgar @52

Perhaps Dima may better be described as "Dimwit". He has some sources, but happens to be considerably more droaning and boring than Mercuris at his worst.

Posted by: aristodemos | Jan 23 2023 21:58 utc | 90

whirlX @53

Certainly the warning also includes Kalingrad in former East Prussia, that little wedge of Russian cheesecake between Lithuania and the Polaks.

Posted by: aristodemos | Jan 23 2023 22:01 utc | 91

Resignations are expected in the Presidential Office and the government in the near future. These include Deputy Head of the Presidential Administration Kyrylo Tymoshenko and Energy Minister Herman Halushchenko.

Vadym Hutzayt, Minister of Youth and Sports of Ukraine, may also be dismissed. Pavlo Ryabikin, Minister of Strategic Industries of Ukraine, may be dismissed and appointed as Ukraine's ambassador to China, several sources in the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine told LB.

"We should expect resignations of the following: Deputy Head of the OP Kyrylo Tymoshenko and Minister of Energy Herman Halushchenko. It's probably not right

Full list here

Posted by: La Bastille | Jan 23 2023 22:01 utc | 92

" I know many secrets that are very upsetting for the Americans. I have witnesses who remember how CIA officials trained Osama Bin Laden and brought bags of money and weapons to ISIS in Syria and other countries. They were preparing outlaws and terrorists all over the world so that there would be trouble everywhere – in Europe, Africa, Asia, South America. " - Yevgeny Prigozhin

I guess hes going to sit on them then, instead of giving this crucial evidence to the world ? Putin must know even more yet he also stays silent. The question is why ?

Posted by: Deplorable Commissar | Jan 23 2023 22:07 utc | 93

Smoking Guns & Thorns of Roses

According to the investigative journalism project, Tymoshenko has been using for his own purposes a Chevrolet Tahoe donated for evacuating civilians from combat zones.

Tymoshenko has argued that he used it to travel to deoccupied regions.
However, the reports on Tatarov's impending resignation have not been confirmed so far.
Tatarov has become the symbol of Zelensky's tolerance of corruption in his inner circle. The president has repeatedly refused to fire or suspend Tatarov.

Posted by: La Bastille | Jan 23 2023 22:11 utc | 94

knighthawk | Jan 23 2023 21:30 utc | 78
>………”banned the travel of civil servants, security officials and deputies abroad.”
Even to Israel?
What about dual citizenship/passports?

karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 21:38 utc | 80
The Barking Ba.tic problem.
Solution: Demographics. Each country is barely the population size of modern city.
Post sloSMO, should Russia restrict all trade to the 3 and restrict visas to only Russian descendants.
As Russia becomes stronger economically, wage-age cohorts will want access.
Nope. Let them clean toilets in UK or Abu Dhabi
The Barking Baltics already have a severe demographic problem. Just let them wither and die.
Poland is a perennial problem. Even when wiped from the map entirely, it still creates chaos. Solution. Allow Germany to take a sizeable chunk.
That’ll be Germany’s punishment for its perfidy.
Carve a wider Kaliningrad coriander through both Poland and Lithuanian.
And use a page from the U$ playbook… have them divided over an internal issue and let them fight like pit bulls in a cage.

Posted by: Melaleuca | Jan 23 2023 22:12 utc | 95

[email protected]

Clearly, the preferable solution to the Poland/Romania housing of nuclear missiles, as you not, would require the collapse/dissolution of NATO. Currently, a growing number of the French people are following national tradition by demonstrating in the streets all across the country. As the hard-core of these demos are union members, youths and the Green Jackets, there is force in that agglomeration as well as evident determination. If those groupings, particularly the unions, see fit, they can shut down the country at a greater level than the "student" revolt in '68 which did unfortunately succeed in unseating DeGaulle.

My further surmise is that the Germans, particularly in the East, along with a considerable number of industrialists and small business people; would be energized by a successful removal of the Macron regime, possibly to be succeeded by Pierre de Gaulle, as a symbolic rallying point. If the disgusted, but only gradually awakening "Volk" across Deutschland come on line and join in; the current hybrid and Western controlled regime could fall. Such an action would reverberate amongst the Austrians and possibly the Spanish and Italians.

If these projected scenarios actually develop along such lines, then NATO would be doomed; the Baltic area hotheads would be soused and the Five Eyes would become isolated and City of London would be fuming.

Posted by: aristodemos | Jan 23 2023 22:13 utc | 96

can anyone confirm that earlier today

EU foreign ministers approve €500 million new package of military aid to Ukraine" - Reuters.

Posted by: Jo | Jan 23 2023 22:21 utc | 97

R3DP1LL3R @84 & 88--

Thanks for your reply. Russia's policy towards the Baltics hasn't changed drastically despite their going Russophobic crazy. The language discrimination has been ongoing for several decades as with the 2nd Class citizenship. But the amount of ethnic Russians leaving for Mother Russia because of those insults hasn't been as many as one might think. And none of the Baltics has instituted anything like the genocide waged by the Ukronazis. Once NATO loses in Ukraine and the Baltics have denuded themselves of their military equipment--and they don't have the monies to buy more--IMO their tune will change. They like the rest of Europe are a hostage to geography and the distribution of resources. The garden idiot Borrell has no clue when he declares Europe independent of Russian hydrocarbons--Europe will remain geoeconomically dependent on Russia for the reason stated above. Yes, geography can be a pain particularly when it's manipulated for political reasons as Stalin did with Central Asian borders.

As for Trump negating current events--there's no evidence for such a statement since he did nothing to stop the ongoing genocide in Donbas and concomitant non-implementation of Minsk. As POTUS, he was very clearly marginalized as Commander-in-Chief and still catered to Neocon aspirations regarding eventual war with China. And then there's Syria, too. In far too many policy areas, Trump continued those of Obama, a man he supposedly loathed.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 22:22 utc | 98

More Ghosts of KievAshraf Ghani

Ukraine’s deputy infrastructure minister, Vasyl Lozinskyi, has been detained and dismissed from his post for allegedly stealing $400,000 (£320,000) intended for purchasing aid, including generators, according to Ukraine’s state anti-corruption detectives and prosecutors.

After the news emerged, Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, vowed that the old ways of corruption would not return to Ukraine.

Pavlo Halimon, deputy head of Zelenskiy’s party – named after his TV show, Servant of the People – was also dismissed on Monday because of corruption allegations, which he has not responded to. Ukrainian news site Ukrainska Pravda published an investigation on Monday morning into his purchase of a Kyiv property for more

Posted by: La Bastille | Jan 23 2023 22:23 utc | 99

"Ideally, NATO would disintegrate, but IMO it will take more than Turkey and Hungary leaving to cause that to occur. Ideas?
Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 23 2023 21:38 utc | 80"

Some sort of US collapse/debt default/crypto bubble-burst might do it.

Posted by: Pdidds | Jan 23 2023 22:25 utc | 100

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