Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.

A "Cleary Defensive" Deployment

by Frank Schnittger Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 01:00:59 AM EST

War in Europe - Russia's assault on Ukraine (Seventh letter down)

A chara, - We are indebted to our MEPs Mick Wallace, Clare Daly, Luke "Ming" Flanagan, and Sinn Féin's Chris MacManus for voting against a European Parliament motion condemning the Russian build-up of troops on the Ukrainian border, a vote which was passed by 548 to 69. Mick Wallace and Clare Daly justified their vote on the basis that the Russian troop deployment was "clearly defensive". Perhaps Mick Wallace and Clare Daly could treat us to another one of their famous taxpayer-funded "fact-finding" missions to Kiev to see how Russia's self-defence deployment there is going. No doubt Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky will greet them with open arms and show them at first-hand what a Russian defensive deployment looks like. - Is mise,


Sorry for the sarcasm, but I am simply lost for words at the Russian invasion of Ukraine. We have had wars in the former Yugoslavia before, but this is the first time since 1945 we have had a full scale invasion of a European country by a major world power.

My fear is not only for what this means for Ukraine and its people, but what it means for all the people of Europe. After many decades of relative peace, declining defence expenditures (as a proportion of GDP), and a reduction in the militarisation of European states, all these positive developments could well be thrown into reverse.

We could be witnessing the end of an epoch of relative peace, and the beginning of a new world order marked by a rise in militarism and military expenditure, a rise in authoritarian politics and the suppression of legitimate debate and dissent.

The warning signs have been all around us: the increased polarisation and militarism in the USA; the authoritarianism and suppression of civil liberties in Poland and Hungary; the rise of demagogic authoritarianism in Turkey and Israel;  and the rise of extreme nationalism in England which lead to Brexit.

It is difficult to know for how much longer the EU can stand out and against such destructive trends within and around its borders. It's not as if we didn't have enough challenges to be getting on with - growing inequalities, mass immigration, climate change and the pandemic.

Quite why Vladimir Putin has chosen to put the entire post WWII world order at risk is difficult to fathom. Dictators often go to war abroad to distract from problems closer to home, but Putin's control of Russia seemed to be as secure as ever. His good friend and admirer, Donald Trump, even stands a good chance of being re-elected President in the USA.

Perhaps it was a certain hubris which led him to believe he could build on past "successes" in and Chechnya and Crimea and that the West's responses would be as toothless as ever. Perhaps, like Hitler, he simply doesn't know the limits of his own power. Let us hope he doesn't lead Russia and Europe to a similar fate.

Display:
by Cat on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 02:56:09 AM EST
That cover is from September 11, 1995.

Just barely two months after the Srebenica massacre July 1995.

by Detlef (Detlef1961_at_yahoo_dot_de) on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 01:57:00 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Srebrenica  - July 11-16, 1995 | Dutchbat |

ICTY: Facts about Srebrenica

Only one Dutch politician Jan Pronk called it a genocide on July 18, 1995. Colleague ministers used more guarded terms.

Dutchbat left Bosnia and crossed into Serbia to safety. As soon as the battalion was safe, a party was organized to celebrate their freedom. I recall the presence of crown prince Willem Alexander and Christian Democrat Jaap de Hoop Scheffer. Just unbelievable ... could not grasp the drama and Dutch military partying. Shame, shame!

Less well known are the dark flights sending arms into Tuzla, logistics of the US, cargo plane from Turkey, arms funded by Saudi Arabia and another Gulf State. The first Al Qaeda cell was established in Europe, a blue print for regime change in Libya and Syria. Kosovo leader is standing trial at the ICC in The Hague for war crimes, US ally to fight the Serbs.

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 07:02:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I had to check... those are the four GUE/NGL (European Left) MEPs for Ireland. One Sinn Fein, three independents.

So it looks like a straight disciplined party vote. I couldn't find it on the EU parliament site (I can never find anything on that site, the search is truly horrible, must be European technology! dating from the 20th century)

... so I'm interested in the date of the vote. As we have seen on this site, perfectly reasonable people have been sceptical about the Russian military threat until ... quite recently.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 09:42:06 AM EST
... I didn't find Cleary, though... what group's he/she in? < /irony>

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 09:54:46 AM EST
[ Parent ]
The vote was on December 16th. Clare Daly and Mick Wallace are partners and are technically independents from an Irish party political point of view. Both are ideologically left wing, although Mick Wallace was a property developer who had to pay the Revenue commissioners over €2 Million in settlement for under declaration of VAT and who once threatened to hire a hitman in order to recover a debt he claimed he was owed.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 12:34:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I think we can say with certainty that it's not about internal problems. The Russians seemed as surprised as I was, there doesn't seem to have been a propaganda blitz to sell the war. That, I guess is one point where parallels with the Iraq war break down.
by generic on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 11:24:46 AM EST
Yes, the propaganda blitz was entirely in the other direction, from the usual suspects. Which is what blindsided the left, understandably.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 11:31:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm not sure what you are mad about, but as far as I can see the Russians are mostly stunned by the invasion. Do you disagree? Recognition of the Donbass statelets wasn't really surprising, since the repression towards the Russian speakers there has been a constant refraint, but a full on rush on Kiev wasn't really rethorically prepared. Do you remember the 45 minutes that Saddam supposedly would need to hit Europe? And that went on for months before the war started. Instead they got one speech with a long list of grievances and then the tanks rolled.
by generic on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 12:10:43 PM EST
[ Parent ]
My reading is that Putin is barely aware of the rest of Russia and has no interest whatsoever in what's happening outside of his own immediate circle. As long as there's food on the big table, important people keep turning up to meetings, and he can't hear shooting or sirens, it's all good.

He's high on his Dugin-inspired fantasy of a glorious new empire stretching from Ireland to India, and he's playing with toy soldiers towards that goal. It's more of a LARP based on a Dugin's Geopolitics than a real campaign for him.

As for what the West should do - No Fly signs are too weakly defensive while simultaneously being too confrontational. It's probably too late for this, but sneaking them some conventional cruise missiles across one of the Southern borders and Ukraine ("Look what we had in reserve!") using them to halt his Epic Show Convoy would very possibly do the job.

Morale and organisation are terrible, and most of the Russian army very much doesn't want to be there. It's all very fragile, and a good counterpush might be all it takes to pry it apart.

Of course the West shouldn't have done Iraq etc. And certainly been more defensive about Russian mafia money and info-ops.

Now we have monkey see, monkey do, and a mad dictator with atrocity envy saying "If you can, why can't I?"

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 01:12:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
"Atrocity envy" is a new concept for me. Dugin's Geopolitics does seem to be the textbook Putin is following, as it calls for the elimination of Ukraine as an independent state:

Wiki

Ukraine as a state has no geopolitical meaning, no particular cultural import or universal significance, no geographic uniqueness, no ethnic exclusiveness, its certain territorial ambitions represents an enormous danger for all of Eurasia and, without resolving the Ukrainian problem, it is in general senseless to speak about continental politics". Ukraine should not be allowed to remain independent, unless it is cordon sanitaire, which would be inadmissible.[9]

I particularly liked its description of the UK as "an "extraterritorial floating base of the U.S." [which] "should be cut off from Europe". The Tory Brexiteers, like Trump, seem to be Putin's greatest allies.

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 01:48:30 PM EST
[ Parent ]
A few points:
No fly zones aren't a thing. It's what you call your wars for domestic consumption if wars are unpopular, but it's not going to trick the party that gets its air defense destroyed.
I wouldn't be too sure about the Russian army doing terrible. The regulars on both sides seem to have learned the lesson of artiCalcDroid and left their phones at home. So most of the video content comes from Ukrainian irregulars and civilians, then gets signal boosted. There was a similar effect in the recent war in Armenia where the more sympathetic side also seemed to do a lot better than they did. We'll see in a few days.
Finally, not sure what Russian info ops are supposed to have contributed. Sure, I didn't believe the Americans about the Russian invasion, but that's hardly an effect of Russian disinfo, unless the Russians tricked US intelligence into claiming a Cuban beam weapon that causes hangovers and sounds like cicadas was hunting their agents across the globe. Zelensky certainly didn't seem to believe them.
by generic on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 05:28:03 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I meant Brexit and the co-opting of the GOP in the US. Also the Q cult and the anti-vaxxers spreading chaos.

Absolutely bonkers, all of it, but impossible without Russian info-logistics and local collaboration.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 05:50:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Not sure what kind of training would be needed to use our cruise missiles, but I'd be fine with sneaking them over the border.  We've made it plain that we'll give them weapons to defend themselves even if we won't get into a hot war with Russia unless they cross the NATO line.  (Which is kind of an absurd stance, of course, but then war generally is absurd.)

I do think the various powers that be are right to reject the no-fly zone.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 01:18:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
A couple of months ago, Turkey has shipped a number of TB2 drones; the same that have been used to devastating effect by the Azeris against Armenian forces last year.

Also, I understand that Javelin anti-tank shoulder mounted missiles have been used to destroy a number of Russian tanks. Not independently verified, of course, fog of war and all that.

by Bernard (bernard) on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 09:23:37 PM EST
[ Parent ]
This led to the Ukrainian meme: "Russia's Z, Ukraine's Ctrl-Z":

by Bernard (bernard) on Sun Mar 13th, 2022 at 10:12:47 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Cracks in the wall
https://aod-rfi.akamaized.net/rfi/francais/audio/journaux/r001/journal_international_07h00_-_07h12_g mt_20220313.mp3

At 1'40, we learn that the "Centre national de sécurité et de maintien de la paix" which is 30 km from Poland and was targeted early today is in fact a huge military basis where US special forces have been training very intensively some Ukrainian units since 2015.

by Tom2 on Sun Mar 13th, 2022 at 11:01:11 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I used to respect Maître Eloas, but...
https://tass.com/defense/1420885
by Tom2 on Sun Mar 13th, 2022 at 11:33:26 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Ha. So we have Twitter references in common. I respect Maître Eolas.

When someone I respect reaches diametrically different conclusions to my own, I try to understand why; and it's not unknown that I change my view (it's all part of growing up / not growing old)

You appear to respect Tass more. Bonne route, camarade.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Sun Mar 13th, 2022 at 11:56:41 AM EST
[ Parent ]
A reason for the democracy crisis we live through is the difficulty for the elites to understand the difference between a reliable source and one which is not. In this case, Tass has more journalists in the countries mentioned in the despatch than any other. And it is not as if Western Europe had no interest and various businesses with the mentioned countries (remember Hollande and his chapka?). In addition to that, there is a context: China has been asking the US to come clean about covid since the beginning. Many countries have asked for an enquiry in China, in what happened to be a very international laboratory (https://www.franceculture.fr/sciences/le-laboratoire-p4-de-wuhan-une-histoire-francaise) which included, as you know, some fishy US business.
Eloas is a lawyer who builds his reputation on the quest for truth. But Twitter has never been about that, and posting cheap pictures to bark with the crowd does not help anyone.
Again, the debate about being for or against any war should be left to the people who are actually fighting it (and possibly to their parents), and to no one else.
by Tom2 on Sun Mar 13th, 2022 at 01:42:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I absolutely agree that one of the fundamental problems with democracy (and it's far from being a recent one!) is the difficulty for everyone ("elites" or not) to understand difference between a reliable source and one which is not.

In reality, there is no such thing as a reliable source. Every source is pushing its own interests to some degree.  A fundamental problem is that people are not trained in critical thinking from an early age; it's a fundamental requirement if a society is to move in the direction of effective democracy.

In the "old days" (I'm taking France as an example, as the "media market" I best understand), people who wished to be informed would choose a newspaper and stick to it (they were generally aware of the political orientation of the paper, which informed their choice).
In the TV age, people got standard government-sanctioned information. Then private TV broadened (arguably) the offering, but subjected information to commercial interests (those of the owners and/or advertisers).

In the internet age, people in general without critical thinking skills quickly fall into tribal or herd behaviour, ready to believe anything if they believe it comes from their tribe...

To come back to Maître Eolas and Tass...

I'm not sure what to make of your Tass link : meeting of Soviet-bloc countries (which the current war is intended by its author to enlarge to include the Ukraine) in order to form a special unit for defense against chemical and biological weapons. It's undoubtedly factual, but lacks the context and interpretation to be useful.

It seems that there are biolabs in Ukraine, US funded, which it is claimed are researching biological warfare. I won't look for factual information about this on Tass (nor in the NY times); I am at a loss to find an informed view of the subject.

As for Eolas, he expresses opinions on a range of subjects outside his domain of competence (notably, about this weekend's rugby). If you intend to boycott him in the future, that's your call.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Sun Mar 13th, 2022 at 02:37:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It is not about a meeting but about "joint (military?) exercises". From the Tass despatch, it is easy to check the local newspapers of Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan in the coming days to see what is going on. That was the only reason of my posting.

As to the biolabs, I think that Oui has posted a whole shelf of literature in the past days.

by Tom2 on Sun Mar 13th, 2022 at 02:43:45 PM EST
[ Parent ]
From today in the American Conservative
https:/www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/questions-about-ukrainian-biolabs
by Tom2 on Sun Mar 13th, 2022 at 03:19:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
...adding:

We could also do a lot of good by getting every bus we can lay our hands on in there and getting as many civilians out as possible ahead of the seige.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 01:27:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yeah, that's frankly the best thing we could do right now. Not really sure about shipping weapons, though of course I have no say in this. It's certainly possible that the Russian advance is as shambolic as Twitter makes it out to be and the Ukrainian army has a fighting chance of stabilizing the frontlines and the supply line over the western border is enough to force the Russians to offer terms that Kiev can accept, but cheering civilians on while they take potshots at Russian tanks until the fuel-air bombs start flying is not the next best solution. Neither is a twenty year insurgency that leaves the country in ruins and two generations decimated, no matter who wins in the end.
by generic on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 05:07:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It appears that civilian casualties are still only in triple digits. Putin knows full well that he can't declare victory over cities reduced to bloody rubble; but it has perhaps started to seep in that he's not going to win very many hearts and minds by starving cities into submission, either.

So we're back to where we were a week ago : what's the endgame?

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 05:39:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The thing about drones, anti-aircraft and anti-tank missiles is that they are relatively small, can be snook over the border, and can be operated by trained individuals without much logistical support and create absolute havoc for an occupying army.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 06:41:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Sure, guess that'd cut off a few years from the 42 Afghanistan took to throw out all foreign invaders or tag on a few to the ten that it took the Syrian government to take back most of it's territory. Still leaves the country in rubble and every family missing cousins and uncles.
by generic on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 09:32:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
recorded running time 03:53:40

Ukraine representatives in the gallery.
Debate recess now.
Voting session 15:30 - 16:15

by Cat on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 03:42:25 PM EST
Astonishing unanimity. I feel deeply uncomfortable being on the same side as, for example, the ECR group (Polish Law and justice, Spanish Vox, Brothers of Italy... no longer the UK Conservatives, sadly) or Identity and Democracy (French RN, Vlaams Belang, AFD etc)

I listened to all the political groups. Manon Aubry for GUE/NGL was the nearest thing to a bleating pacifist : Diplomacy, you can't win peace through war, etc...

Best speaker was Philip Lamberts for the Greens (1:53); but I would say that, wouldn't I?

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 07:33:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Light relief at 2:55 from Uhrik, a Slovak Nazi (not affiliated to an EU group!) who gets in a couple of punches about OK let's defend Ukraine, "where was the EU when the US invaded Iraq etc..."

Bloody hell, I agree with him too!

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 07:59:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Giggles at 3:00 with Bernard Guetta (French Macronist MEP) and, yes, brother of the world famous (apparently) DJ, David

"Vous avez perdu, Monsieur Putin!" repeated half a dozen times with a new talking point at each iteration.

He's a journalist, and he used to be the "Geopolitics" specialist on public radio, when I listened to it 20 years ago. Pure flashback.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 08:07:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
outflank US Congress outflank TRUMP's NATO bargain basement summit
https:/www.dw.com/en/western-arms-supplies-for-ukraine-how-are-they-getting-there/a-60959864, illustrated
As EU treaties do not allow it to tap into its normal budget for military purposes, the bloc is activating a vehicle called the European Peace Facility, which allows it to provide military aid up to a ceiling of €5 billion.
[...]
The US is also stepping up its shipments and providing an additional $350 million (€313 million) in military assistance, including Javelin antitank missiles, Stinger anti-aircraft missiles, small arms and ammunition. That brings the total of US military aid to Ukraine to $1 billion over the past year and to more than $2.5 billion since 2014.
Trump, EU's Tusk Spar Over Defense Spending Ahead Of NATO Summit, July 2018

archived Europe Council, Ukraine signs key agreement with pro-Russia separatists, Yanukovych v EU Council + Sweden v UNODA, Three Seas Initiative summit in Warsaw, PESCO, Trump calls out Germany over the Euro

by Cat on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 09:58:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
... but von der Leyen asks Parliament to reflect on establishing a specific annual arms budget.

Lots of stuff happened today. Nato can go die.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 10:36:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
within Council who decided how best to spend EU27 paid in capital? I forget who landed the European Values FKA "cohesion" portfolio for EC.
by Cat on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 10:49:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
A massive bombing attack opens the door to peace
Because all we need to understand is that to make peace we need to be two, but to make war is enough to be one - this is exactly what Mr Putin is telling us," he added. "We need to think about the instrument of coercion, retaliation, and counterattack in the face of reckless adversaries," the EU's chief diplomat said
eight ways to Sunday school
by Cat on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 05:02:29 PM EST
UPDATED: Russian Navy Cruisers Positioned to Counter U.S., French and Italian Carrier Groups in the Mediterranean, 22 Feb

< checks watch >

Turkey Closes Bosphorus, Dardanelles Straits to Warships, 28 Feb
"'It is also time for NATO, which will continue to have access of course, to send more of its ships into the Black Sea to support Turkey, Bulgaria, and Romania, the NATO members whose fleets operate routinely there,' Stavridis said."

The Russia-Ukraine Conflict, the Black Sea, and the Montreux Convention

The Montreux Convention is unique in the law of the sea in that it explicitly discriminates against nations outside the Black Sea. Instead, Montreux favors six "Black Sea Powers" (Russia, Ukraine, Turkey, Romania, Georgia, and Bulgaria) over "non-Black Sea Powers" (everyone else).
[...]
Other Considerations: the U.S. and NATO Maritime Presence and Strategic Concerns Around Escalation

The U.S. was absent from the Montreux Convention negotiations and has not joined the treaty. Nevertheless, the U.S. abides by the Convention under customary international law.

US < squint >UK do not do international law, m'k.
While there is no provision in the body of the Montreux Convention addressing aircraft carriers,  a nuclear aircraft carrier is a capital ship that exceeds Montreux's tonnage limitations.  But other U.S. and NATO vessels could still feasibly transit the Turkish Straits, provided they give Turkey ample notice under the Convention (15 days for all non-Black Sea Powers).
[...]
Vessels of war belonging to non-Black Sea Powers - which includes much of NATO's maritime force - are prohibited from remaining in the Black Sea for more than 21 days. Putin may see an increased NATO presence in the Black Sea as an escalatory measure, so it remains unclear whether this is being seriously considered
"European family that you would live next door to"
by Cat on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 05:42:55 PM EST
Erdogan to Putin : "You're not the boss for us"

< rimshot >

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Wed Mar 2nd, 2022 at 09:49:05 AM EST
[ Parent ]
972
And of course, there is the historical justification for Russia's invasion. In a speech leading up to the war, Putin said that Ukraine never had a "tradition of genuine statehood," and that the country today is a fiction created by the Bolsheviks when they established the Soviet Union. In an essay published last year, the Russian president claimed that Ukraine is an "anti-Russian project."

This, too, sounds like a replica of Israel's claims about Palestinian nationalism. Israeli leaders have repeatedly claimed that the sole purpose of the Palestinian national project is to harm Israel, while denying the existence of the Palestinian people or collective identity.

The Israeli right is particularly connected to these kinds of arguments. It is no coincidence that Gershon HaCohen -- a reserve general in the Israeli army turned right-wing commentator -- has suggested that Israel ought to directly support Putin. "Kyiv is the birthplace of Russia. Kyiv for Putin is like Bethlehem and Hebron," he said in a recent interview. The logical conclusion is clear: Russia is liberating Kyiv, Israel is liberating Hebron.

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 05:50:34 PM EST
by Cat on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 06:18:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I was just looking at this article earlier today

"Illegally disseminated information", so it's all true?



It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 08:31:42 PM EST
I note the article has gained a lot more content and authors since yesterday : It might start being useful.

a win for Putin!

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Wed Mar 2nd, 2022 at 09:52:58 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Meanwhile, the Russian invasion de-nazification is pushing some French politician to shred over 1 million of presidential campaign pamphlets.
All this because it includes a photo with a long time supporter, recently turned embarrassing character (no, not Jeffrey Epstein).

by Bernard (bernard) on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 09:16:31 PM EST
Bwahahahahaha!

Too bad the little ferret Zemmour never got to shake his hand.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 09:31:08 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm just watching a documentary on the Algerian independence war. They mentioned the Anglo-Franco-Israeli Suez adventure, and I wondered if it's an analogy with the current war.

I think not.

Sure, they both surely seemed like a really good idea at the time.

BUT. The Suez adventure gave a decisive strategic advantage to the aggressors. AND it was a military success.

What they have in common is the extent of the "diplomatic" disaster.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 09:35:59 PM EST
I'll expect a lot more of this:
by generic on Tue Mar 1st, 2022 at 10:59:08 PM EST
As ever, the Telecrap cares not what it slings at the wall.
by rifek on Sat Mar 5th, 2022 at 05:18:12 AM EST
[ Parent ]
We even have a macro for that:
[Torygraph Alert]
by Bernard (bernard) on Sat Mar 5th, 2022 at 11:52:02 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Kathy Sheridan has an interesting profile of Zelenskiy in the Irish Times. I have commented as follows:
We've had 77 years of relative peace and prosperity in Europe, thanks largely to the EU, and no thanks to its many detractors here and in the UK. Zelenskiy embodies that determination not to give in to the Putins, Trumps, and sundry apologists for autocracy here, and the least we could do is offer EU membership to his country if it can survive the Russian onslaught. Unlike NATO, the EU represents no military threat to anyone, and indeed represents a collaborative approach to solving common problems. Talk of it being beset by corruption is irrelevant. That is the sort of problem the EU is good at reducing over time. It took Ireland 50 years to become a fully contributing member, and we can afford to be patient with difficult eastern European members. In the meantime we could all benefit from the moral leadership Zelenskiy now provides.



Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Mar 2nd, 2022 at 03:21:39 PM EST
my, my, haven't you come a long way from Brexit balance of power swings from UK to Ireland. Am I to understand, the science has changed?
by Cat on Wed Mar 2nd, 2022 at 05:30:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I don't see any change it the balance of power between the UK and Ireland - as evidenced by the protocol negotiations - so I don't see the point of your comment. If anything, the Ukraine invasion has strengthened the EU and the case for Ireland's role in it. You appear to see power in entirely military terms - a peculiar US obsession. I am far more interested in the EU's soft power, and I believe the invasion has only made that more relevant.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Mar 2nd, 2022 at 06:19:07 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That statement is demonstrably untrue. For more than a decade commenting here, I'd guess, the balance of my observations of current event of concern to "democracy" point crookedly to MONEY manifest power. MONEY is the only unit of measurement that certainly matters to the society of the free world at the "alleged" end of history.

Were it not for my knowledge and belief that you surely are a man of your word, I'd be surprised if you had known this. After all, None of us have any entitlement to be read, much less promoted, recommended, commented or acted upon. Correct?

As for Ireland's role in strengthening Europe, I can't help but question, while I have your attention, this relation to "EU soft power" and the "moral leadership" of Mr Zelensky lieu of Ireland's prodigal segregationist Biden to forefend collapse of the NI Protocol. To which ethical precept embodied by Mr Zelenski's leadership do you aver? Birth, death, or union?

by Cat on Wed Mar 2nd, 2022 at 07:57:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
As for Ireland's role in strengthening Europe

wtmff?

You appear to have misread Frank's post... or you're being ironic of facetious... whatever, I extracted zero information from the rest of your paragraph. Just a sort of bzzzzz noise.

Which might be related to the fact that some people might skip over some of your posts. It seems that you pride yourself on being misunderstood. Chapeau.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 02:59:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Relieved to hear I'm not the only one who reads the posts as gibberish.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.
by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 03:28:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
If anything, the Ukraine invasion has strengthened the EU and the case for Ireland's role in it.
"it": the EU

"to strengthen" is not a  *-Eng intransitive verb; WHAT is the object manipulated with strength; WHO strengthens is the subject of the sentence: "Ukraine['s] invasion" (another elision or transposition, ie. invasion of Ukraine Russia)

Would you prefer me to interpret this sentence to attribute "Ireland's role" (prepositional object of "for") to the subject, "the Ukraine invasion"?

Heretofore, I'd been led to believe by Frank's many memoirs that peoples of Ireland share pride in neutrality and humanitarian aid during periods of conflict--abroad-- excepting unsung, legendary heroes temporarily incorporated with Britain and 19th-century Mexican freedom fighters, for example. Generally, I choose not to disabuse him of historical Irish- and "Scots-Irish" immigrants' roles in US American ethnic conflict. But I do point to authoritative historiography.

Frank is a prodigious writer and typically far more careful than me. For that reason, I question his perception of morality, arising from EC-orchestrated belligerence in Ukraine's civil war, precipitated by its "association agreement."

by Cat on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 05:51:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
OK so it's a technically-justifiable error on your part. It is possible to construe Frank's phrase thus; however, most of us would have understood that he's talking about Ireland's role in the EU (this possibility seems to have escaped you, but it seems grammatically plausible).

As for "Ukraine's civil war"... let me try to understand...
In what respect are Putin's armed forces Ukrainian? Are you arguing that they are proxies or allies of the People's Puppet Republics of the Donbass?

Or are you defining a "civil war" as any war that takes place within the boundaries of a single country? As an example, when Poland was invaded from east and west in 1940, is that a "civil war" according to your definition?

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 06:06:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That's mighty white of you. Thanks. Is *-English your first, second, third, or fourth language?

I try to resolve one topic at a time, sir. First, written *-Eng syntax, then spoken *-Eng, often expressing time-sensitive connotation to, ahem, "heritage speakers" conversant with *-Eng. diction. And perhaps, one day, libraries of proprietary computer code d/b/a artificial intelligence.

Are you aware of contextual-sensitive DICTION CORNER comments that I have published, whenever I detect ambiguous usage of *-English words--particularly legal, NOT MILITARY, terms of art--by anglophone "columnists" purporting to translate effects of US American political economy into vocabulary meaningful to the most ignorant, litigious "content consumers" on the planet?

I cannot confidently speak either to socially acceptable or poetic instrumentality of other languages, including but not limited to psycho (eg. Nobel bounded rationality). So I don't. OK, well, until organizational hygienists of western civilization careen so far from "experimental anthropology" as to invite ridicule.
archived Fri Jan 25th, 2019

A number of publishers offer digital and electronic reference defining "civil", "war," and "civil war" should you be confused as to semantic fit with sundry, contemporary hostilities in progress in places beyond your department apartment.

by Cat on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 07:18:55 PM EST
[ Parent ]
English [New Zealand] is my first language, and my only language until age 25 or so. My English is likely influenced by the fact that French is the lingua franca where I've been living (mostly) since that distant time. For the last 25 years, approximately, I've been engaged in on-line discussion in English, generally with a population of majority American English locutors. I have actively resisted the americanisation of my means of expression; however I daresay I understand American writers at least as well, on average, as they understand each other. Likewise concerning locutors of French.

Concerning the "civil war" in Ukraine, I truly wish to learn your reasoning. I understand that, for example, a patriot of the Confederacy might have rejected the term concerning their war with the Union, considering that it was, on the contrary, a war between two sovereign nations. If this is the analogy that you are referencing, do you consider any war between entities within the former Soviet Union to be a "civil war"? For example, Azerbaijan / Armenia?

Or what? Not wishing to put words in your mouth (but, clearly, fishing)

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 07:42:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
invasion of Ukraine by Russia

My reading comprehension is fine, but I've never pretended to typing accuracy. Because I am not the only one surfing the innerboobs who is similarly afflicted, I long ago adopted a personal two (2) rules: (1) IF perfect  be the enemy of "good enuf" (eg. Nobel idiom, satisfice), post it; otherwise, lurk; and (2) when in doubt, ask.

Rather than, say, ascribe Florida Man homophobia to a pole/poll smoke joke.

by Cat on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 06:13:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Sorry Cat, tbh I'm devastated by what is happening to people in Ukraine (and the longer term implications of Europe as a whole) and simply haven't the time or energy to try and understand oblique legalese and grammatical hair splitting I don't really understand anyway and which doesn't appear to me to be helping anybody come to terms with a horrific situation.

Ireland is utterly conflicted between its traditional (since independence) unwillingness to side with the UK in its wars (otherwise misleadingly entitled "neutrality") and its current commitment to the EU which is a project dedicated to peace in Europe, but which is increasingly confronted with the reality of a warlike neighbour and has to make painful choices about whether to say "I'm all right jack on the western fringe of Europe" or commit to helping a country like Ukraine, less fortunately situated geographically, survive as a distinct entity.

If you want to get a flavour for the debate in Ireland, read Mick Wallace and Clare Daly's self-justification for their votes and the vituperative response it is receiving in the comments.

My reaction is twofold:

  1. If Britain decided to invade Ireland because they didn't like our continued EU membership and wanted to re-incorporate us into their sphere of influence, would we not fight like hell and seek assistance wherever we could find it?
  2. We have seen Putin's modus operandum in Chechnya, Crimea and now Ukraine and his threats to Finland and Sweden. If he succeeds in Ukraine, will he not then be tempted to move on to the Baltic states, Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary, Poland etc.? When/where do we draw the line if not now?

You see, this situation is existential for us, while for you it seems little more than an exercise in point scoring and word games. Pardon me if I decline the invitation to take part.

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 07:04:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thank you for your honesty.
by Cat on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 07:21:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Daly is becoming a heroin in Zimbabwe
https:/www.thezimbabwemail.com/world-news/video-eu-placed-on-defensive-after-clare-dalys-hard-hitti ng-speech-on-ukranian-russian-war
by Tom2 on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 09:29:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Pepe Escobar

He says that the Russian encirclement of Kiev/Kyiv will be studied in military accademies for decades.

by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Wed Mar 2nd, 2022 at 05:30:58 PM EST
Speaking of Kiev/Kyiv, newspaper Libération has decided, from now on, to use the Ukrainian transcription 'Kyiv' for the capital of Ukraine, replacing the Russian derived 'Kiev' transcription, that has been commonly used in French language.

Fini «Kiev», «Libération» écrira «Kyiv»

Difficile de changer dans un journal le nom d'une ville quand son usage est ancré. Pourtant, malgré les habitudes des lecteurs, la raison politique s'impose. Pour «Libération», le «Kiev» venu du russe n'a plus lieu d'être et s'écrira désormais «Kyiv».
by Bernard (bernard) on Wed Mar 2nd, 2022 at 09:21:57 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Why Kyiv and not Baile Átha Cliath?
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Wed Mar 2nd, 2022 at 09:48:22 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Clever. What we need is the transliteration in English, French etc of what the locals call their capital city.

Doblin (English), Daubln (French) etc.

How do Kyivans pronounce Kyiv?

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 03:09:41 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I have used "Kiev" in my letter as that is the popularly ascribed name of the capital in the English language, and so intelligible to most. "Kyiv" is increasingly used in the more specialist literature or if you want to show yourself to be an expert on the subject!

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Mar 2nd, 2022 at 10:17:25 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Well, I suppose the BBC folks are now showing themselves to be experts too (since Jan. 29):

Kyiv or Kiev? - "Please pronounce it our way"

by Bernard (bernard) on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 07:52:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]
So it's pronounced "kay why eye vee".

On est bien avancés.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 05:44:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
KYIV? Sounds like a radio station in southwestern Iowa to me...
by Bernard (bernard) on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 09:13:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
People over there don't know that much of the alphabet.
by rifek on Sat Mar 5th, 2022 at 05:24:10 AM EST
[ Parent ]
...er, not yet:

by Bernard (bernard) on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 09:29:17 PM EST
by Bernard (bernard) on Sun Mar 6th, 2022 at 09:50:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Ukraine war: Boris Johnson defends refugee response after visa criticism
Boris Johnson has promised to be "very generous" towards Ukrainian refugees, amid criticism over the number granted visas.

It emerged on Sunday that only 50 have been given visas since the conflict began, prompting calls for the UK to do more for people fleeing danger.

It comes amid confusion over whether access will be widened access beyond the current schemes.

Ukrainian refugees wanting to re-unite with relatives in the UK are blocked in Calais (yes, the UK border is in France).

by Bernard (bernard) on Mon Mar 7th, 2022 at 05:55:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bernard (bernard) on Mon Mar 7th, 2022 at 09:23:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]

by Bernard (bernard) on Tue Mar 8th, 2022 at 09:49:20 PM EST
[ Parent ]
by Bernard (bernard) on Tue Mar 8th, 2022 at 10:11:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Slavery is freedom.
And anti-fascism is Putin's. Obviously.
by Bernard (bernard) on Thu Mar 3rd, 2022 at 09:46:31 PM EST
Israeli PM Bennett had a long meeting with Putin in Moscow.

Reportedly flying to Berlin now...

by Bernard (bernard) on Sat Mar 5th, 2022 at 09:14:48 PM EST
Sweden, a neutral, non-NATO country, is sending military aid to Ukraine.

by Bernard (bernard) on Sat Mar 5th, 2022 at 09:39:02 PM EST
I got a comment censored at MoA for saying that Macron's gesticulations were just meant at catching a few votes from the French extreme-right (leading the polls with 30 percent and all known as pro-Putin from repeated statements through the years).
He is okay to map the Anglo-Saxon Marxist dinosaurs but not to say anything about the Europeans in general.
by Tom2 on Tue Mar 8th, 2022 at 01:50:10 PM EST
I'm sure you got a buzz out of being censored, Tomtom.
But you may get ridiculed, which may be worse (maybe you get a buzz out of that too)

Macron doesn't need to reach out to extreme-right electors; sadly, he is going to be "triumphantly" re-elected, for lack of a credible single candidate of the left (or of the Republicans).

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Mar 8th, 2022 at 03:32:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
No chance of the voters on the left uniting behind (checking polls) Mélenchon to push an alternative on the left into the run-off?
by fjallstrom on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 08:24:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Mélenchon has strictly zero chance to win a 2nd tour against either Macron or further right.
He was very high 5 years ago, in the top three, but the MSM immediately demonized him ("pro-Putin" "brown [shirts] left"...)
There was even a parliament election immediately afterwards but his troops did not mobilize well enough for that.
by Tom2 on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 08:57:01 AM EST
[ Parent ]
It's a little more complex than that, Tom

For example, in 2017 I voted for Mélenchon in the first round, abandoning my preferred candidate, because he had a shot at making the second round (there were three candidates basically polling within the margin of error of each other, for a run-off against Macron)

But instead of trying to widen his appeal to the left since then, he has basically persisted in his "populist" gig, with the (arguably virtuous) objective of seducing the electors of the far right. Also, his party/movement follows the Leninist model of "democratic centralism", which has alienated those of his activist base who believe in democracy.

The result is that he has become toxic for most of the left, so there is zero chance of his making the second round this time.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 09:28:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
... recently suggested that the left should unite behind Mélenchon.

Final nail in his coffin.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 09:30:21 AM EST
[ Parent ]
When you have to listen to the Haiti news to get some real information, you know something is going wrong.
https://tinyurl.com/y9zfxvve
(RFI: "« depuis 2014, Washington renforce, soutient, équipe l'armée ukrainienne en ayant livré près de trois milliards de dollars d'équipement depuis 2014 », explique Pierre Morcos, chercheur au CSIS, le Center for strategic and international studies de Washington")
by Tom2 on Tue Mar 8th, 2022 at 01:56:23 PM EST
Tu es drôle...
Your link goes to an article sur Radio France Internationale, which was written by Marion Cazanove, a Parisian journalist.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Tue Mar 8th, 2022 at 03:54:06 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Is bullying considered polite in France? Is it accepted from foreigners?
The link points you to the "journal de Haiti (et des Caraïbes)"; the article is in relation to the podcast.
You should try to listen to rfi, you would learn a lot. And it us paid by your taxes.
by Tom2 on Tue Mar 8th, 2022 at 07:21:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]
[ET Moderation Technology™]
Please, dial down the tone. Focus on the arguments, not the person.

@Tom2: the above tag means that I'm writing as a frontpager, just to make sure the discussion is going on. My personal opinions will be expressed elsewhere.

Remember when I mentioned the ET Editorial Guidelines? Just describing how that place works.

Please, go ahead and read the ETiquette page and the ET Editorial Guidelines. Seriously.

Having what you wrote being called upon is not bullying. Whatever opinion you express here is absolutely fair game; this works for everybody. Thanks you all.

by Bernard (bernard) on Tue Mar 8th, 2022 at 08:09:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
For some people bullying is never considered polite.

Deswegen ij would like you to practice some yoga, in which you bend forward at the waist as far and as relaxed as possible. Then to stretch, please grab your knees from the back side, and move your lower torso as far as you can between them, and breathe deeply.

Now it's time to bring your head and neck forward curling and up, until you can almost touch or smell your ass. In yoga, you are never invited to stick your head up there.

Not only ass yoga awaits you, but the ability to once again read the User Guide and be so kind as to follow it when making links, and many other internet type of things. Ass Uming you wish to be taken seriously here.

"Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage." - Anaïs Nin

by Crazy Horse on Tue Mar 8th, 2022 at 09:32:46 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I see that freedom of speech has its (technical) red lines. No surprise.
by Tom2 on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 09:24:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
There are no free speech protections for bad faith content on private forums.
by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 10:10:14 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Tomtom, I have been on internet fora since the previous century (I have written the code for internet fora).

I know a troll when I smell one. I don't do censorship, but have spent many a happy hour hunting trolls in order to keep a forum going in confidence and good faith.

Prove me wrong : post something interesting.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 10:17:40 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I would suggest you try this one but obviously you are not interested in the non-white part of the planet.
https://www.rfi.fr/fr/podcasts/le-d%C3%A9bat-africain/20220304-la-guerre-en-ukraine-vue-par-les-afri cains
by Tom2 on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 12:47:39 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Obviously?
Your link doesn't work, I suggest you provide an excerpt here of the parts you find interesting. That's what a non-troll would do, anyway.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 01:34:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It is a one hour debate with 5 participants. They express different views. Just remove the space between afri and cains

or google "rfi débat africain" (highly recommended weekly programme)

by Tom2 on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 03:06:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Or that, but I don't want to speak of bank run here because this is among the internet red lines.
UK CEBR report/forecast on the UK economy. A selection of the CEBR summary:
· The report is not a worst case forecast.
· Halved 2022 GDP growth to 1.9%
· 2023 GDP growth to 0.0%
· Reduction in 2022 real GDP of £51.4 billion.
· Reduction in 2023 real GDP of £42.5 billion.
· Rising cost of living, reduced consumption, reduced exports, significant rise in inflation.
· Fall in 2022 living standards by £71 billion or a fall of £2,553 per household, roughly half of which is attributable to Ukraine.

The summary ends with:

"So the Chancellor is likely to be under further pressure to put the economy on a semi wartime setting on 23 March."
Before a footnote on the fall in consumption during WWII.
Here's the 8th of March summary of the CEBR report and the CEBR report itself "Cost to the UK Economy
of the Russian Invasion of Ukraine - a scenario analysis. A Cebr report, March 2022" (PDF 338 KB).
https:/cebr.com/reports/invasion-of-ukraine-rising-commodity-and-oil-prices-and-sanctions-likely-to -have-major-impact-on-economy
https://cebr.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/Cost-of-Russian-invasion-of-Ukraine-for-the-UK-economy.p df

by Tom2 on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 12:51:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
See above.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 01:34:52 PM EST
[ Parent ]
[ET Moderation Technology™]

Tom2
A lot of people have expended a lot of time and energy trying to keep this site going as a space for informed, evidenced based and courteous debate. Those few of us that remain generally only have limited time to devote to the site

You come along "to put some links on you website" without regard to our user guidelines and expect people to be interested and claim to be being subjected to censorship when asked to abide by the guidelines.

The fact is we are all constrained by time and have to focus on a few areas of interest. We ask that you don't splash raw links about the place and expect them to be followed and read.

Generally, if you have a point to make, it is best to do so directly yourself. Occasionally you may want to buttress your argument by quoting a few paragraphs from another story which is generally done in a blockquote. If you do want people to follow a link you should embed it in text which makes it clear what the link is about. However your comment/story should stand on its own two feet without requiring anyone to follow a link unless they want to dig deeper into whatever argument you are making.

If people disagree with your comment or want further clarity they may ask you to evidence it. This is NOT evidence of a cancel culture or censorship here; simply that people are entitled to disagree or ask you to justify the point you are making.

Thanks in advance...

Index of Frank's Diaries

by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 10:20:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
You mean that freedom of speech is meant only for people who are html conversant?
by Tom2 on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 09:31:30 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Speak away, just don't expect people who are time poor to engage with poorly constructed or presented arguments... (and there really isn't much HTML involved, even with scoop, which is an ancient technology)

Index of Frank's Diaries
by Frank Schnittger (mail Frankschnittger at hot male dotty communists) on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 06:11:34 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Tom2: When you have to listen to the Haiti news to get some real information, you know something is going wrong.

Actually, yes, "something is going wrong": your statement clearly implies that the US military support to Ukraine is soooo secret, that the MSM wouldn't report on it and it has to be stumbled upon while checking RFI's "Journal of Haiti and the Americas" (for it is the full name of this RFI section, it's not only about Haiti news).

Well, sorry, your statement is total bullshit: even a cursory search by "a moron in a hurry" (that would be me, by the way) turns out a wide coverage by the French media. Like this by Le Monde, five days ago, from their DC correspondent, Piotr Smolar:

Guerre en Ukraine : le soutien militaire des Etats-Unis à l'Ukraine, constant mais prudent depuis 2014

Ces dernières semaines, les autorités américaines ont souvent insisté sur la somme versée depuis 2014, pour montrer l'effort exceptionnel consenti : 2,7 milliards de dollars en huit ans.

As for Pierre Morcos, the DC based French thinktanker, he is often quoted or interviewed by the media; it's not difficult to find his stuff.

As it happens, the Google.fr News (moron in a hurry, that's me) first hit on Pierre Morcos right now is the RFI piece you quoted as "Haiti news" - no idea why, the ways of the Google are unfathomable...

by Bernard (bernard) on Tue Mar 8th, 2022 at 07:19:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
These gals are starting to get to me...
The ongoing saga of the East European MIGs :
Poland, Slovakia, and Bulgaria were going to send jets to Ukraine, but abruptly changed their minds
(1 March) My hypothesis is that these three countries received specific and detailed threats from Putin.
U.S. rejects Poland's offer to give it Russian-made fighter jets for Ukraine

Now the Americans are antsy too; they can't see an operational justification for it (the Ukrainians seem to be doing quite well against what one would imagine to be overwhelming Russian air superiority, but they are still pleading hard for help).

I'm guessing they too are worried about Putin's itchy nuclear button finger.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 12:59:31 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That would be, probably, answer B: Not wanting to start World War 3 with a major nuclear power.
by Bernard (bernard) on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 07:28:10 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I was talking about RFI. I mean that what you hear on every news bulletin on RFI in the last 2 weeks is not that line. It is not the first time that I hear on the journal des Caraïbes some stuff that does not follow the editorial line. You quote Le Monde, but it is under paywall.
Of course it is well known to people who read, but it was not the headline on the BBC or CNN lately, you noticed?
By the way, 4 days ago, they even had a journalist explaining that the Ukrainian army was taking position in (emptied) schools. But luckily you cannot access the bulletins of the past days.
by Tom2 on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 09:35:07 AM EST
[ Parent ]
400 arrests
More than 400 Ukrainians who protested against the occupation of Kherson by Russian forces have been detained by Russia's national guard, Ukraine's military high command said.

In a statement, the Ukrainian military high command said hundreds have been arrested for protesting in the now Russian-occupied Kherson.

Due to the furious resistance of the residents of Kherson, the occupiers are attempting to introduce an administrative-police regime.

I can't see the Twitter video from work, but I hope it's good

An interesting comment from the Twitter thread :

An aside: people are yelling in flawless Russian, speaking Russian doesn't make them any less Ukrainian, or in favor of Russian invasion or pro-Putin.


It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 12:45:06 PM EST
The drawbacks of invading people who speak your language as their mother tongue: Kherson is one of the main cities of Novorossiya.
by Bernard (bernard) on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 07:32:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
At least this redux of Syria 2011 does not have the dialect issue. It was clear to anyone who did not need sub-titles back then that the 'rebels' were speaking everything but Syrian for a large majority of them. Who knows, that might happens in Ukraine too, and while the Jews will be allowed to fly to Israel, the rest of the population will end up electing a very different type of leadership.
But that's fine, they'll all be Europeans.

(Courtesy to: Arno)

by Tom2 on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 07:58:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
So you speak Arabic, Tom? What other languages?

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 09:59:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
by Tom2 on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 08:27:14 PM EST
Q: Kiev always says that the victims are to be lamented on the Ukrainian side by the shelling of the separatists.

A: In the West, people don't like to talk about it. The civilian casualties from both sides are turned into a common figure. But if you read carefully, for example in the Russian opposition media, in which the West is always defended and the Putin-bashers write, where there were also longer texts and conversations with eye-witnesses, then it is admitted there that most civilian casualties from 2014 to the present day were in the East. Also because Donetsk is a big city. If you shell a city, there are more victims

I do not believe Russian propaganda, and I am an experienced propaganda analyst from both sides. But today you will not find anything about the victims in the East in western media, only the victims of the Russian attacks. That is a huge problem, because it was the Ukrainian army that shelled its own population. And because an omission of facts, in this case, is a lie that leads to violence.

Watson Institute, civilian and military casualties post-9/11
by Cat on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 10:49:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The main reason is that Russians and Russian-speaking Ukrainians feel attacked and sacrificed. They see themselves as victims of discrimination, of ethnic discrimination. That is quite clear, we need to talk about it. Some call this Nazism. I wouldn't use such a term, not even genocide. Nevertheless, I find it distasteful to weigh up whether it is genocide or not in the context of thousands of deaths in the hands of nationalist battalions. Fascism is, as Camus said, contempt.

I am a witness that my Ukrainian acquaintances considered the people of the East to be inferior. They used all sorts of arguments --  for example that the lumpenproletariat had concentrated in the East. Is this an acceptable argument? It seemed to be in the Ukraine. Is the slogan Ukraina above all alright? I've heard that all the time in Ukraine.

Which brings me to the moment that I stopped listening to ESCOBAR rambling, returned the first minute, and began my tedious transcription to be certain the intelligibility of inferiority, contempt across Europe's national borders can be apprehended in a word without any difficulty debating inflection or spelling.
First one thing, Richard, Russians personally all over NATO-stan are being criminalized just because they are Russians. So there is no other [?] evidence of neo-fascism that is more startling than this one. There's absolutely nothing [?] that compares to it in modernity.

Alright, we had this before against Iraqis, against Syrians, and now to pick up their own perverted logic: Oh, they are blond and blue-eyes just like us as well. Ah, but they're Russians; so this means that they are untermenschen, which is NAZI terminology once again or as my friend The Saker put it so memorably, snow niggers. This is an excellent, ultra hardcore expression to qualify how The Beltway [Washington D.C.], especially, looks at Russians. They don't look at Russians as people. They look at Russians, in general, and I'm not talking only about the [Russian] military or the Putin circle or whatever, as snow niggers. We have to go there and take over those rich lands. They don't deserve those lands. It's crazy, because history always tells us stuff that is basically underneath, and then, when you get to a point of inflection, of explosion, it bubbles back on. You know, it's in the collective unconscious, and then we have something like this [SNAPS FINGERS] that starts a new paradigm, and the whole past goes back. James Joyce used to say "the nighmare of history." No! This was the unconsciousness of history that is bubbling up all over again.

by Cat on Wed Mar 9th, 2022 at 11:46:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
To his credit, it is true that the EU has almost no cultural and scientific cooperation with Russia in the last 10 years. It is not an "Associate Country" and thus you don't meet Russians in artistic residencies, universities etc. They are only used as political tool when a flavour of opposition can be detected (and invited to a famous film or theatre festival).
Not to say that life is pink in Russia, but they did have a political life that was made even more difficult by permanent provocations and the escalation of the neocons.
by Tom2 on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 09:29:48 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Russians personally all over NATO-stan are being criminalized just because they are Russians.

Not that I give a flying whatever about anything Escobar ever said, but indeed, I have heard about bricks through the window of Russian shops. It's a universal truth that war makes idiots even stupider.

I saw my Russian grocer on TV last week, in tears, on local TV. He's a decent man. I'll go and buy some stuff this weekend.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 09:58:09 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Interesting!
(and technically accomplished!)
The Western interpretation goes like this: Putin is a dictator;  he is obsessed with the restoration of the Soviet Union or the Russian empire;  or both. As a dictator  he can do anything, while you don't know what ordinary Russians think because they are afraid. This is superficial. Until a few days ago, the Russian media were still free. In an article that appeared in Krass & Konkret in the summer, I had warned: If you provoke Russia, which can happen in different ways, for example by sponsoring Navalny as a Russian Guaido, then tightening the screws will be a self-fulfilling prophecy

I agree with the sentiment. The problem is that despite the relative openness, there were only the trappings of democracy; no separation of powers; not the slightest possibility of electing anyone other than Putin; an extreme concentration of decision-making in a single pair of hands.

The problem with this (a functional dictatorship) is that it has led to a purely discretionary war, on the whim of a single individual. That a majority of citizens will support their country in a war is practically a given, at any time, in any nation. Doesn't make it right.

This could logically be Russia's "Vietnam moment", but the fact that there is no longer freedom of information works against that.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 09:52:36 AM EST
[ Parent ]
But it is all fine to fund Turkey's dictatorship?

your text

(don't laugh, "€150 million will be spent on strengthening democracy and rule of law")

your text

What is the cause of this addiction for html tags? Tablet-users? Not knowing what you click on is rather a bad habit imo.

by Tom2 on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 10:37:50 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I think strengthening democracy and rule of law in Turkey is an excellent objective. I'm not aware of the detail of the projects, they should certainly be cut if Erdogan is siphoning off the money, for example.
But he won't live forever; he may even lose the next election.

(The site technology is old. Nobody is maintaining it.)

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 10:53:42 AM EST
[ Parent ]
as old as eurotrib's, but it gets the job done for one user, doesn't it.
by Cat on Thu Mar 10th, 2022 at 03:42:50 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Zhang Meifang is Consul General of China in Belfast.

by Bernard (bernard) on Sun Mar 13th, 2022 at 10:05:42 AM EST


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