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'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Tue Jan 25th, 2022 at 07:55:06 AM EST
Four-way Ukraine talks set for Jan. 26 in Paris: source | CTV News - Reuters |

MOSCOW -- Political advisers from Russia, Ukraine, France and Germany will meet in Paris on Jan. 26 for a fresh round of talks on resolving the conflict in eastern Ukraine, a source in the Russian delegation said on Monday.

The four-way talks will take place against the background of a broader standoff between Russia and the West, with tens of thousands of Russian troops positioned near Ukraine's borders.

Russia denies planning to invade Ukraine and says it is Kyiv that is preparing to attack Moscow-backed rebels in its breakaway eastern provinces.

Ukraine tensions: Normandy format talks set for January 6 | DW News |

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Tue Jan 25th, 2022 at 07:56:33 AM EST
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Further reading ...

What Hope for Ukraine and the Normandy Four Summit? | Carnegie - Nov. 19, 2021 |

The first meeting in over three years of the heads of state and government of the so-called Normandy Four is set to take place on December 9 in Paris.

This four-way negotiation format (France, Germany, Russia, and Ukraine) brought about the Minsk I and II agreements of 2014 and 2015 aimed at ending the war in eastern Ukraine. While the nitty-gritty of the actual implementation of Minsk II is being handled--as yet by and large unsuccessfully--by a number of working groups that convene regularly in Minsk and include representatives of the non-government-controlled areas in Ukraine, the Normandy format frames the negotiations and provides a communication channel to the rest of the world.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Tue Jan 25th, 2022 at 07:57:24 AM EST
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The thing with Minsk II and Normandy Four is that it's a no-go for Ukraine for two reasons:
  • negotiating with the "separatists" means admitting it's a civil war and not Russian aggression contrary to 7 year narrative so far.
  • if the population of Donetsk gets a say in Ukrainian politics, the current opposition is likely to gain power (at least in a democracy it would) and Ukraine would never, ever join NATO but reform good relations with Russia.

Both of these are unthinkable for the current regime in Kyiv. Nor are they popular in places that support the current regime in Kyiv, either.
by pelgus on Tue Jan 25th, 2022 at 08:42:10 AM EST
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My impression when Zelensky was elected was that he was for implementing the Minsk II agreement, or at least for ending the conflict. Part of an agenda taht got overwhelming support. He seems to have shifted position since (and has become less popular), though it is interesting now that both he and his defense minister has been clear that there is no russian military threath and that they see it as a psychological war on Ukraine.

My guess is that the realities of being the president of the current Ukrainian state trumps what the persons thinks going into office. And therefore by extension what the people can influence.

Also, selection of future office holders seems to be narrowing. Euronews, from december:

KYIV - Ukrainian authorities placed former president Petro Poroshenko under formal investigation for high treason on Monday, accusing him of links to financing separatist forces in the eastern Donbass region.

Officials said the accusations against Poroshenko were related to similar charges against pro-Russian lawmaker Viktor Medvedchuk, who has been under house arrest for about six months.

Medvedchuk's and Poroshenko's political parties denied wrongdoing.

So two of the leading opposition parties has leaders arrested. In addition to the (small) Communist Party of Ukraine that was already in 2015 banned from running in elections. Ironically enough, that was under Poroshenko's rule.

Ukraine does seem to have a democracy problem.

by fjallstrom on Wed Jan 26th, 2022 at 11:00:08 AM EST
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Ukrainian defence minister says Russian invasion unlikely in near future

There's no data pointing to Russian invasion of Ukraine in the near future, Ukrainian Defence Minister Oleksiy Reznikov has said.

"As of today, the Russian Armed Forces have not a single attack formation that would suggest they will go on the offensive tomorrow", he said on the Svoboda Slova programme on ICTV channel on the night of 25 January.

According to the minister, the scenario of a Russian attack on Ukraine in the near future is unlikely; Reznikov assessed the likelihood of an attack by 20 February - the day the Beijing Olympics end - as "not high".

A day earlier Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that the actions of the US and NATO were escalating tensions in Ukraine. He stated that this was "carried out through information activity and particular actions taken by the USA and NATO".

Apparently the whole crisis exists only in the Western media...
by pelgus on Tue Jan 25th, 2022 at 09:05:18 AM EST
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by generic on Tue Jan 25th, 2022 at 09:10:18 AM EST
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No wonder they don't understand. Unlike Biden and Johnson, Macron is not behind in the polls.
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Tue Jan 25th, 2022 at 10:15:05 AM EST
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Weirdly Zelensky's polls are in the garbage though:
by generic on Wed Jan 26th, 2022 at 05:52:29 PM EST
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Zelensky & Co lighting the fire with war rhetoric and now scared of its resounding succes in a united US Congress plus White House in need of a political score.

Building on the fundament of Maidan Revolution and VP Biden relationship.

Ukraine president heckled at tribute to Kiev protesters as Biden visits | The Guardian - Nov. 21, 2014 |

The Ukrainian president has been heckled by relatives of 100 protesters killed in Kiev's Euromaidan revolution at a memorial ceremony for the victims.

The relatives, frustrated by Petro Poroshenko's failure to bring officials of the previous government to justice, shouted: "Who is a hero for you, Poroshenko?", "Where are their killers?" and "Down with Poroshenko!" They also attacked him for failing to keep a promise to confer the title of national hero on the victims, which would bring financial benefits to their families.

The US vice-president, Joe Biden cancelled a planned visit to the area off Kiev's Independence Square, apparently for security reasons.

Poroshenko and Biden had been due to lay a wreath together at the memorial but instead met nearby and shook hands before the US vice president headed for talks with the Washington's man PM Arseniy Yatsenyuk.

It was the first real public display of anger against Poroshenko, who was elected in May after the pro-Moscow Viktor Yanukovich fled the country.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Wed Jan 26th, 2022 at 07:42:36 PM EST
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Biden tells Russia that U.S. will never accept Crimea annexation | LA Times - Nov. 21, 2014 |

Joe Biden has stressed the importance of yesterday's initialling of the coalition agreement: "For the whole world it is important to see that you have completed this process, appointed all Ministers and proceeded to business. And demonstrated that what people wanted on the Maidan is a freely elected Government that does its job".

"You have already made significant steps in the fight against corruption, trying to stabilize the economy in this very difficult situation. We want to help," Joe Biden underlined.

The US Vice-President has noted that he considered it an honor to be in Kyiv at the anniversary of the beginning of the Maidan, when "the Ukrainian people showed incredible bravery".

The extent of the Obama administration's meddling in Ukraine's politics was breathtaking | Cato Institute - Aug. 6, 2017 |

Joe never did like Russians, especially Vlad. Almost think he was part of McCarthyism in the 50s instead of Robert F. Kennedy and Ronald Reagan with the Screen Actors Guild and HUAC.

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Wed Jan 26th, 2022 at 07:45:46 PM EST
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