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Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


The Ukrainian Interim President has ordered the withdrawal of whatever troops remain from Crimea.

http://edition.cnn.com/2014/03/24/world/europe/ukraine-crisis/

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Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Snowdens Secret posted:

NATO apparently thinks the Russians may rather soon make a play for (NATO member) Moldova:

http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/ukraine-crisis/nato-russia-has-sizeable-ready-forces-ukraine-border-n59801

A quick peek at a map would suggest such a move would have to include eating most of Ukraine, including parts where Russians are in a marked minority(?)

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


The argument that cutting the gas will hurt Europe as much as it hurts Russia cuts both ways though. Can Russia really use the gas exports to retaliate if the EU and US decide to embargo other strategic trade, like financial transactions and vital machine parts, without crippling it's own economy and risking a spring revolution of it's own?

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013



quote:

had to find a regional oligarch, Ihor Kolomoisky, to kick in the funds to buy

Oligarch funded armies, here we come!




BTW, does the Budapest Memorandum actually have any guarantees? People keep waving it around, but I don't actually see it saying anyone has to actually do something about any non-nuclear breaches. Is there something I'm missing, or is this just a nice piece of paper to wave at the Russians?

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Barroso has announced the US and EU are hatching plans for reducing European dependence on Russian fossil fuels, G7 energy ministers to meet next week.

So... drill baby drill? Presuming they aren't talking more solar panels I take it we are looking at more fraking? Just how long term would reducing reliance on Russian gas be, taking into account the EU economic situation?

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Waroduce posted:

I know your joking about this, but the brain drain after the Soviet Union collapsed was significant.

Half the old soviet block is in NATO these days. Surely at least the Baltic states has some level of humint there? Can't we ask them?

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Godholio posted:

So when do we get to see badass Cossacks with awesome hats and staches riding into battle against tanks?

It seems they are primarily deployed against pastel punk bands.
http://www.theguardian.com/music/2014/feb/19/pussy-riot-attacked-whips-cossack-milita-sochi-winter-olympics

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


In Turkish news; Erdogan is blocking Youtube as well. After a clip of turkic government an mil people discussing military action across the Syrian border leaked.
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-26773702

quote:

Im phone posting at work, so this is going to be quick, but speaking from a historical perspective and taking in what was just posted above me, I would be more worried about what the Russians know about us than what we know about the Russians through our ties to former Soviet satellites.

Would you care to elaborate? I don't really have a good handle on the east-west spygame after the SU fell.



Mortabis posted:

Can EU nations actually afford more military spending? Many of them are even more broke than we are for a lot of the same reasons. They already have insanely high taxes (40%+ of GDP, compared to our ~25%) and are still running deficits because of generous entitlements.

I'd love to see, for instance, France raise its retirement age and put the balance into defense but last time it tried something like that people set cars on fire.

The EU has more than enough conventional military power to take any actual shooting war off the table for Russia. And on top of that you have the US. Granted such a war would be amateur hour for half the units involved, but it's not going to come to that anyways. The whole of the EU spends 3 timesas much as Russia in pure dollars. So it's not more money you need (although I'm totally for us getting more better stuff and manpower).

It's the political capacity of getting 28 countries to march in lock step, without people trying to wiggle out of it or secure special favors and exceptions. Which just isn't going to happen right now. And that means it's the US who's going to have to get poo poo done, as per usual. one or two % up or down of EU military spending isn't going to solve the political cat herding issues.




Apart from that, since most of that 40% tax rate is "free" healthcare it's only fair to count the fact that american health insurance gobbles at least a good 15% of your wage. So the amount of money left in your pocket is comparable (depending on country and profession), it's just a difference of if you prefer private or public deathpanels.

Courthouse fucked around with this message at 19:15 on Mar 27, 2014

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


ming-the-mazdaless posted:

Wait, so germany finds that they cannot provision demand side energy with a devastating science project? How was this problem created in the first place? Do they not offer electrical engineering in german universities anymore?

There has been a lot of cart before horse thinking in energy politics. And a lot of long term plans that require the world economy to continue on a pre-08 trajectory. But mostly it's that the environmental parallel agendas require shutting down both fossil and nuclear power, and either agenda refuses to take into account the other one when calculating their numbers..



Germany has actually been planning to slash subsidies to renewables by a full third back in January. Which pretty much means abandoning the 2020 carbon emission goals. There have been murmurs that between the carbon emission goal, Russia, the Hessen(?) state court ruling the plant shut downs were not entirely legal, and Japan planning to restart their plants despite Fukushima being the reason for the German shutdowns in the first place, there may be sufficient political capital for nuclear to come back. But I have yet to see anyone saying to officially.
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn24914-germanys-energy-revolution-on-verge-of-collapse.html#.UzWHm8bTrck
http://www.economist.com/news/asia/21598714-government-and-voters-are-putting-economics-atoms-opening-way-japan-restart

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Tartars want their own state as well.
http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/03/29/us-ukraine-crisis-crimea-tatars-idUSBREA2S09320140329

Crimea wants them moved.
http://en.ria.ru/world/20140319/188544777/Crimean-Tatars-Will-Have-to-Vacate-Land--Official.html

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


orange juche posted:

That is why you do not start wars in the winter.

That is why you don't start a war during the winter, right after getting rid of your best generals in favor of political cronies.

Also, small ethnic enclaves on Russias borders seem to overall really, really, not want to be part of Russia. See; Finns, Chechens, Dagestanis.

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


psydude posted:

Yeah WTF is up with people in the West white-knighting Putin?

Battered wife syndrome? A jealous wish that we too could return to forgotten glories through a bit of land grabbing? Envy at Russia having a leader capable of getting poo poo done? (provided you conveniently disregard that inconvenient mass corruption and repression).

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Iseeyouseemeseeyou posted:

quote:

The latest incident comes days after North Korea test-fired two medium-range Nodong missiles over the sea, its first such launch since 2009.

Oh, best Korea. Never change.

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Whip Slagcheek posted:

Has Russia shut down our ability to ship hardware from Afghanistan through their territory yet? Because that seems like a pretty obvious and expensive way to gently caress with us.

Also a good thing to hold over the heads of American decision makers to make them think twice about making any sanctions too effective. There's not much for Russia to gain from deepening the sanctions war.

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Venetian separatists planned to storm st Marks square, armed with guns from the albanian mafia and a home made armored tractor/tank. A few dozen arrested and more suspected. Telephone intercepts talk about hundreds of supporters.

Recent unofficial internet polls have indicated that Venetian secessionism has been growing due to the state of the economy, central govt corruption, other parts of the country being moochers, and all that usual stuff.

One of the arrested men is former parliamentarian Franco Rocchetta of Lega Nord.

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/apr/02/italy-arrest-veneto-separatists-plot-tank

Hey, nationalist chest beating has gotten people into space before. Also, imagine all the potential pork for the mil industrial complex. I'm sure there's room to roll it into the F-35 programme or something.

E:

quote:

ft Hood

god drat loving..

Courthouse fucked around with this message at 22:48 on Apr 2, 2014

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Asehujiko posted:

How were they even planning to get a tank onto their tiny island town unnoticed?

I don't think you understand quite how tanks work.

quote:

Shelter in place is a brilliant plan, if by place, you mean armory, and by shelter, you mean gear up and go rear end in a top hat-hunting.

I guess you wouldn't want people to stay put while the QRF got there and shot the bad guy up. Having people running around would only cause added confusing and increase targets.

(I'm presuming there is a bit more to getting your gun and ammo out than just showing up and grabbing a gun, since it is not a warzone we're talking about)

Have there been any real reforms or attempts to beef up stateside base security since last time this happened?


E:

quote:

That is the most half-assed killdozer I've ever seen. Marvin Heemeyer would be rolling over in his grave if he knew that crazies have fallen so far.

To be fair, they were planning to deploy it on the eve of the may elections. So we could give then some leeway and say it was still unfinished?

Courthouse fucked around with this message at 23:14 on Apr 2, 2014

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


iyaayas01 posted:

Again, I don't understand how the Ukrainians thought that it was anything other than a feel good piece of paper that convinced them (stupidly) to give up their nukes. Because that's all it was. If they honestly thought a piece of paper that the Russians agreed to right after the Wall came down was going to be enough to ever prevent them from being under threat of Russian aggression, they're loving idiots. And if we're going to play word games with what meant what, you could make a case that the UK violated paragraph three first through their inducement to get Ukraine to join the EU.

They did so because the signatories of said paper convinced them that's what it meant, that their security was guaranteed. (granted, it was 1994 US telling them that they would make sure 1994 Russia didn't pull some poo poo) Now you could say they should have realized that 20 years down the line there would be new people in all these places and anything not on paper would have been forgotten. But I don't think there is any doubt that in the smoke filled back rooms the Ukrainians were being promised and guaranteed their territorial integrity by the signatory powers in exchange for the nukes.


Now it turns out that it is a worthless piece of paper. And that American promises don't mean poo poo when the it hits the fan. The entire point of a guarantee is that you actually take real and meaningful action to back it up. Or else is is by it's very description not a guarantee of anything.


Point is, the US has said a lot of things over the years. And a lot of countries have based their policies on the understanding that the US would honor it's word. And this lack of meaningful action calls into question every last more or less formal security guarantee underpinning the world diplomatic status quo. It's a big loving deal.





Also, laughing and telling everyone "haha, those dumbshits trusted us" is not terribly good foreign policy.

Courthouse fucked around with this message at 19:30 on Apr 6, 2014

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Pro-Russia demonstrators have clashed with police in Donetsk, Luhansk, and Kharkiv. All close to the Russian border. Local governmental buildings have been stormed and Russian flags raised. Calls for a "people republic" to break away from Kiev.

quote:

Ukraine's Interior Minister Arsen Avakov accused President Putin and Mr Yanukovych - who was forced from office in February following months of street protests and is now living in exile in Russia - of "ordering and paying for another wave of separatist turmoil in the country's east".

In a message posted on his Facebook account, he said: "The people who have gathered are not many but they are very aggressive. The situation will be brought under control without bloodshed. But at the same time, a firm approach will be used against all who attack government buildings, law enforcement officers and other citizens."
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-26910210

Other sources are saying that a lot of the protesters in the east are actually Russian Russians, both civilian and agents/specops, from across the border. Who had been moved into Ukraine as part of a long planned campaign to destabilize the Ukrainian east with the goal of integrating it with Russia as well.

However I can't find any reputable source saying this. Anyone have any handle on how much of this "the political opposition are foreign agents" stuff is to any degree verifiable?

iyaayas01 posted:

That is one hell of an assumption, saying there "isn't any doubt" that we guaranteed their territorial integrity. I know you won't be able to prove it, so I won't ask you to, but I'll just reiterate that it is one hell of an assumption and I think saying there isn't any doubt is much too strong of a statement, seeing as how the lack of any concrete proof by definition means there is doubt.

Basically it comes down to there being 2 possible versions of what the agreement was and meant.

1: Ukraine would take the unprecedented step of giving up it's entire and vast nuclear arsenal, in exchange for being guaranteed it's territorial integrity by the signatory powers.

2: Ukraine would take the unprecedented step of giving up it's entire and vast nuclear arsenal, in exchange for bupkis.


Of course I can't prove poo poo here, I will admit as much. But I will claim that there can be no reasonable doubt that what was promised Ukraine, or at least what Ukraine were led to believe were promised to them, must have been of immense and serious value. Because you don't loving give up the third largest strategic nuclear weapons arsenal in the world for option 2. The very idea is prima facie ludicrous. If that was not what they were being promised then what exactly were they told they were getting?

As to the second part, it may be true that the US has differing levels of commitments and promises. Ranging from some diplomat saying "we take national sovereignty real serious/your country is important to us" over tea and biscuits to full no-poo poo article 5. The problem right now being the perception that America is unwilling and/or incapable of backing up part of that range. The question is where the US draws the line. When, exactly, will american support be forthcoming? Because there has been a lot of stepping over red lines lately with little to no action.

That may all be perception. And a lot of countries may have been stupid for having been lulled into a false sense of safety from the resident world police. But it is how media and politicians around the world are perceiving it.

Courthouse fucked around with this message at 14:08 on Apr 7, 2014

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


quote:

I propose a third option: Ukraine gave up its nukes not because it exacted a (verbal, unofficial) promise from the US to protect its sovereignty, but because it perceived that in the post Cold War environment (when they were broke as poo poo and basically teetering on failed state status) it made more sense to give up its nukes in an effort to get increased Western aid because holding onto the nukes would've made them persona non grata as far as the West was concerned (their hanging on to nukes would've been a huge blow to the NPT construct) and Russia was even more of a failed state than they were, it's not like they would ever be a relevant threat again, right?

Conceded as part of it. I still maintain that Ukraine, judging from it's actions and statements from their officials past and present, were under the impression that the US would act as a deterrent against aggression. Deterring usually coming in the form of telling someone they can't do X, and then backing that up with a credible intent and capacity of economic/military/political response. The US certainly did not do anything to dissuade them of this notion.

For red lines, see the Arab revolutions and the current administration telling various pre/post governments to do/not do stuff and nothing much coming of it bar in Libya. Also the current situation in Ukraine, where the US went "you can't do that" and nothing much happening after they did.

Not all of these instances were/are termed red lines, but essentially fall in the category of failed US deterrence. And much of the post CW status quo is built on assumptions of and about US deterrence.
For further reading, just look up and US conservative news site's well stocked 'Obama makes US look weak' section.

Whip Slagcheek posted:

If you're stupid enough to leave the sovereignty of your nation in the hands of someone else, you're probably an idiot.

Also, you're making a lot of assumptions about geopolitical dealings with nothing but hyperbole to back it up.

Probably. But that would include most of the western world bar a few of the bigger Euros. Most smaller nations have more or less disarmed and relied on the assumption that the era of conquest was over.

My assumptions go no deeper than seeing that more or less important people and media are all upset about the Budapest memorandum, and indicating that their understanding of what it "meant" was different from what the US current understanding of it is. Snowdens links were good reads on this.

Also, "people upset about American foreign policy" is not exactly hyperbole. If anything it's status quo. (By it being a big loving deal, I meant to US allies. I don't think it will have major reprecussion for the US itself. Perhaps I should have phrased my thoughts better)




While there are plenty of examples, the most obvious one is Taiwan. Where the US defense treaty was intentionally left ambiguous, essentially just saying the US will make sure Taiwan has the equipment it needs for self defense and then leaving to Washington to determine how much that means. And Taiwanese sovereignty is very much reliant on US support and containment of overt and overeager Chinese ambition for reunification/absorption. There's a reason Hagel had to go out and publicly promise that the US will honor it's asian defense treaties.

reading
http://www.businessspectator.com.au/article/2014/3/20/china/taiwan-next-crimea
http://nationalinterest.org/commentary/taiwan-watching-crimea-nervous-eye-toward-beijing-10047




In related news it looks like the month long student occupation (as well as tens of thousands marching on the presidential office) of the Taiwanese Parliament over a trade treaty with China, that they feared would give the mainlanders economic control over the isle, looks to be coming to and end after the speaker promised to delay the bill and work to add oversight mechanisms.

quote:

Taiwan Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng said a review of a trade pact with China would be delayed until an oversight mechanism for such cross-strait agreements is enacted, a concession to student protesters who barricaded themselves inside the legislature three weeks ago to protest the pact.

The protesters have said the negotiations between Taipei and Beijing for the pact, which was signed last year, weren't transparent. They have demanded that the government set up a legally binding mechanism to oversee all cross-strait deals, including the services trade pact, to ensure proper oversight and public input.

Pressure is mounting on the Taiwan government to resolve an impasse over the trade pact that has moved thousands of students to camp inside and outside the legislature since March 18. More than 100,000 protesters gathered outside Taiwan's Presidential Office Building in downtown Taipei on March 30.

Mr. Wang said ruling and opposition party negotiations on the trade pact—which are crucial for itspassing—would be delayed until legislation for monitoring agreements with China is enacted. Mr. Wang didn't say when the law could be passed.

Student protesters on Sunday called Mr. Wang's announcement "substantial progress" but said they would continue to occupy the legislature as it wasn't clear if Mr. Wang supported their version of the draft oversight bill.
http://online.wsj.com/news/articles...0769173224.html

Courthouse fucked around with this message at 20:25 on Apr 7, 2014

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


quote:

So because much of the western world demilitarized that makes them not idiots?

I think you structure your defense to equal the threat. Blowing billions on an idle and goal-less army instead of other vital stuff is also pretty idiotic.

Had you asked some time ago whether Ukraine should redirect billions to counter the growing Russian threat pretty much everyone would have said that would be a retarded move that would needlessly hurt vital economic recovery and antagonize Putin.

Structuring defense to equal the treat is the logical thing to do, and demilitarization is quite sensible when there are no real perceived threats to your sovereignty. The counterargument being that you need to take into account the unforeseen threats that pop up from time to time. But where do you draw the line there? How strong does the [insert EU country here] army need to be before they are not idiots?


quote:

The West should embrace this chaos as a reasonable excuse for inaction, because without a Ukranian government to make the formal request, how could anybody even know if Ukraine wants NATO forces intervening? By the time Ukraine had a functioning interim government, it was already done. I say that NATO still won't leave any other allied government hanging in the future, because in this case there was no government to leave hanging.

Reverand maynard posted:

are treaties tied to the government or the people?

I'd think it would be with the nation as an entity, regardless of who is or isn't in government? It's not like if someone nukes London NATo does nothing because technically there is no government to call for triggering art5.

And also, do you want to set the precedent that treaties are void during times of political upheaval/govt illegitimacy? Since that would kind of sound like an invitation for the Georgia/Ukraine tactic of destabilize -> annex territory in 'self defense' to become a more common sight around the world.

It may be the actual reality of it, but I think you'd want a better official doctrine for who gets help for what when.

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


punakone posted:

There is currently some hubbub here over a possible Russian disinformation campaign waged against Finland:
http://www.economist.com/blogs/easternapproaches/2014/04/finland-and-russia

Similar things have apparently been going on in the Baltic states.

Times I want to know what the hell is going on with our intelligence people.

There has been a lot of strange stuff going on around the Baltic lately. For example Swedish intelligence recently noticed Russians have been buying up large amounts of local tourist maps, like as if they wanted to equip large amounts of personnel with them. Which makes little sense from a covops standpoint, because then why wouldn't they just buy one and make copies? Mind games with Swedish intelligence?



It appears Latvia and Lithuania has banned Russian tv for a period of 3 months, saying the channels "programs were biased and likely aimed to incite discord". So they are definitely worried about the threat of Russia trying to much poo poo up and incite the local Russian minorities.
http://bigstory.ap.org/article/latvia-lithuania-ban-russian-state-tv-broadcasts

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


punakone posted:


Säpo (Swedish intelligence) warns for Russian warplanes.

Sums up what courthouse posted, its in swedish though.

This is getting pretty interesting. Id like to believe that Russia seriously doesnt plan for anything like whats happening in Crimea to happen here or in the Baltics.

Though doesnt every state have opplans for stuff like this, even if it isnt happening?

(I think you mean warplans)

Looking at Georgia and Ukraine, it does not seem like Russia had some genius plan laid out ahead of what happened. Rather they had the resources, planning and will to take advantage of the situation as it evolved. The Baltic is probably safe, but it seems that if the situation would suddenly and unexpectedly change Putin wants to have the option to exploit it as well. And less overtly, use the knowledge that he has the ability to act in a crisis to leverage influence in the area by convincing the near abroad that they'd do best to not antagonize Moscow.

Also, a bit of it is almost certainly tit-for-tat over Sweden selling the NSA access to Russian data communications.
(Sweden sits on the main cable that links Russia with the rest of the internet, representing some 80% of their internet traffic)
http://rt.com/news/sweden-spied-russia-nsa-759/

quote:

My dream scenario is that Russia attempts to do a South Ossetia/Abkhazia/Crimea type action to Estonia, Finland intervenes to help a buddy out, and the end result is Continuation War 2: Putin Boogaloo

The contingency plans for which calls for people like me to die first, so I vote no.

Courthouse fucked around with this message at 19:03 on Apr 8, 2014

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


The situation in the Ukrainian east is escalating.

quote:

DONETSK, Ukraine (AP) -- Ukraine's government struggled to stay in control of the country's eastern regions as tensions flared Tuesday in three cities. While the government managed to recapture its regional headquarters and detain dozens of pro-Russian protesters in one city, it said "radicals" were keeping 60 people hostage and threatening them in another city.

Unknown "separatists" with weapons and explosives were threatening the hostages inside a security service branch in the city of Luhansk, the Ukrainian Security Service said in a statement Tuesday.

It was not clear who the hostages were or if they were security service employees. The building was seized Sunday by armed pro-Russian protesters.

Earlier Tuesday, Ukrainian authorities battled with pro-Russian protesters but regained control over a government building in Kharkiv, the country's second-largest city, evicting the protesters and detaining dozens.

http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/E/EU_UKRAINE?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT



Still no reports of any well disciplined "militias" with no insignias showing up. So we are perhaps not quite in Crimea territory yet here.

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Putin just sent a letter to a dozen countries telling them to cough up Ukraines gas bill, or else
http://en.itar-tass.com/russia/727287

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Helldump Immunity. posted:

Looks like NATO is going on the offensive. On Facebook.


Russia contained. Now if hollywood can bring back Russia as the main blockbuster bad guy we can all sleep well at night.

quote:

syria stuff

So now that Russian help is presumably off the table, is the US going to ramp up military aid to the non-islamist rebels? And increase in the risk of getting dragged into an air campaign or Turkey doing something stupid?

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Interior minister Arsen Arkov accuses Russia of arming protesters, promises operative response

https://www.facebook.com/arsen.avakov.1

Bad Google translate;

quote:

Electricity on-line .
Kramatorsk ( Donetsk region). Goes attack .. Unidentified persons fired at the police department . Police responding. Goes shootout .
Red estuary ( Donetsk region). Militant attack with guns kratkostvolnymi Russian-made AK 100 - repelled by the police and urban warriors . AK100 with grenade launchers is only armed forces of the Russian Federation .
Slavic. Mob destroyed towers . Communication blocked police department and SBU.
Ukrainian government considers the facts of today as a manifestation of external aggression by Russia .
Urgently convened NSDC .
Grouping of forces and Interior Ministry of Ukraine promptly comply RESPONSE PLAN ..

***
All - stop wailing and shouting attack those who are already under attack. Do what you can to the Donbas - work with people. WE MAKE YOUR BUSINESS . DO YOU YOUR !

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Fojar38 posted:

What's the endgame here? The Russians just move in tanks and helicopters and annex eastern Ukraine as well? What possible benefit is there to them doing so? I can at least see Crimea as a consolation prize for losing Kiev since it has strategic value and whatnot but eastern Ukraine is just a big hunk of land and seizing it by force does not seem to benefit Russia in any way aside from making people hate them even more.

Nationalist pride? Putin has been working the literalist 'it all belongs to Mother Russia' thing for quite a while.

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Best Friends posted:

That picture is literally the only picture of a guy there who matches though.

The rest look like standard militia idiots:

http://www.interpretermag.com/ukraine-liveblog-day-54-gunmen-storm-police-buildings-in-east-ukraine/#1733


edit: also I'm not sure that picture is even verified to be recent. It matches so exactly to Crimea I wonder if it is just a Crimean picture. The source seems to be some random twitter account with an unknown backer / agenda.

Wasn't that the same thing in Crimea? Bumbling, bearded and fat local militiamen up front, suspiciously competent and well organized "militiamen" backing them up and taking care of the serious stuff? The whole point being deniability.

And while some suspicion of sources and agendas in this kind of propaganda environment is prudent, I think the current situation does put a finger on the scale of likelihoods. If armed gangs were seizing government buildings without support or approval from Moscow as part of their plans, I'd expect the Russians to say so. (what the hell the end game of those plans are is anyone's guess)

Courthouse fucked around with this message at 22:21 on Apr 12, 2014

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Best Friends posted:

unless Spetsnaz has started accepting old fat bearded men and young men who don't know how to tie boot laces.

All part of the maskirovka!




It appears the ones accused of being Russian forces are manning the roadblocks leading to the city, blocking Ukrainian police from arriving. These are the guys making sure to relieve people of their cameras and cellphones. While the militias inside the city seem more happy instagramming themselves. Obviously lacking any photos or video to corroborate this makes it hard to substantiate...

The local police chief has been forced by the militias to hand in his resignation. One or two (?) more police stations/posts seem to have been taken over. The rest of the local law enforcement seems to have evaporated.

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Kiev has given until early monday for the separatists to disarm, after which it is sending in the army. Russia has called for an emergency meeting of the security council and calls the ultimatum a criminal act. If I understand the timezones right the meeting will be just an hour before the time Kiev set is up.

http://uk.reuters.com/article/2014/04/13/uk-ukraine-crisis-idUKBREA3709O20140413

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


More police stations stormed, local police did not resist and later pledged loyalty to local militia commanders. Representatives of the "Peoples republic of Donetsk" have officially asked Putin to do anything he can to help.

Ukrainian interim President calls for UN peacekeepers to come stabilize the east of Ukraine.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/world/kiev-deadline-for-disarming-freeing-buildings-in-east-ukraine-passes/article17955977/

E:

Ukraine has strangled fresh water delivery to Crimea from 50 cubikmeters per second to 16, 80% of Crimeas fresh water comes from mainland Ukraine.
http://en.interfax.com.ua/news/economic/200552.html


Russia and US wave dicks in the Black Sea

quote:

A Russian fighter jet made multiple, close-range passes near an American warship in the Black Sea for more than 90 minutes Saturday amid escalating tensions in the region, a U.S. military official said Monday.

In the first public account of the incident, the official said the Russian Fencer flew within 1,000 yards of the USS Donald Cook, a Navy destroyer, at about 500 feet above sea level. Ship commanders considered the actions provocative and inconsistent with international agreements, prompting the ship to issue several radio queries and warnings.

The fighter appeared to be unarmed and never was in danger of coming in contact with the ship, said the official, who was not authorized to talk publicly by name about the encounter so spoke on condition of anonymity. The passes, which occurred in the early evening there, ended without incident.

The official also said that a Russian Navy ship, a frigate, has been shadowing the U.S. warship, remaining within visual distance but not close enough to be unsafe.
http://www.businessinsider.com/russian-jet-makes-passes-near-us-warship-in-black-sea-2014-4




E2:

reading on Ukraine-Russian military dispositions from the Royal United Services Institute, fresh of the printing presses for all your milsperg needs!
https://www.rusi.org/downloads/assets/UKRANIANMILITARYDISPOSITIONS_RUSIBRIEFING.pdf

Courthouse fucked around with this message at 16:44 on Apr 14, 2014

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013



Good stuff as always. I eagerly await how John Brennans weekend visit to Kiev will be handled. :3

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


swagger like us posted:

A lot of the videos and pictures of the so called "Self Defense" forces in the East, while made up of obviously surplus bought gear, is actually pretty uniform it seems. Almost all the videos I've seen have them wearing that digital camo pattern. It doesn't look like a super spontaneous event, with just a bunch of guys raiding surplus stores and buying whatever camo they can get, it looks like its organized much more than that.

I guess a group order from some surplus store isn't that hard to come by, but has anyone spotted anything more than typical Militia weaponry? I'm talking actual support weapons, like PKMs, RPKs etc.?

Some reports describe militias being armed with "heavy anti-tank weapons", which I suspect is dumb journalist talk for RPGs(?). I'd kinda expect there to be a decent bit of squad level PKM/RPG type stuff around, since the local militias appear somewhat less than loyal and that would be the kind of stuff a national guard type force would be issued. I don't think they need that much armament anyway, the question here is whether Ukraine can diffuse this situation without bloodshed triggering a Russian intervention, which strikes me as more of a political question where they need to convince the civilians away from the streets.

Also, if lessons are learned with any speed any infiltrating forces would presumably have been told to grab some gear that makes them look less Spetnaz-y and stay in the background.



There are reports that the people occupying the police stations are not the same people who stormed them. But again, doesn't mean Russian boots on the ground. The well organized militas may just as well be unemployed ex-berkut and military veterans earning a bit extra on the side.

More worrying is that the Russian military hospitals have been grouped into forward positions and interior ministry forces (responsible for pacification of occupied territory during wartime) have been put on high alert.

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013



In D&D? I'm calling bullshit.







Here's some more stuff on Russia's new artic plans. (I believe they went to the UN to have an expansion of their artic territory recognized back in 2011?)

quote:

A united system of naval bases for ships and next-generation submarines will be created in the Arctic to defend Russia’s interests in the region, President Vladimir Putin said.

He urged the government to provide full state funding for the socio-economic development of the Russian Arctic through 2017-20.

Putin said that a separate state agency should be created to implement Russian policy in the Arctic and to improve the quality of governance and decision-making in this area.

“We do not need a bulky bureaucratic body, but a flexible operational structure, which will help better coordinate the activities of ministries and departments, regions and businesses,” he said.

At a Russian Security Council meeting Tuesday, the president said that suggested “strengthening of the naval component of the Federal Security Service (FSB) border guard group.”

“At the same time, we should strengthen the military infrastructure. Specifically, I’m referring to the creation of a united system of naval bases for ships and next-generation submarines in our part of the Arctic,” he added.

Putin emphasized that even the smallest aspects of the integrated security system in the Russian Arctic needed attention.

“All security issues should be thoroughly worked out during multiagency exercises and training sessions, in which the units of the Defense Ministry, Emergencies Ministry and other structures should take part on a regular basis,” Putin said.

“Russian oil and gas production facilities, loading terminals and pipelines in the Arctic must be protected from terrorists and other potential threats,” he added.

"It makes sense to create a body similar in status to the state commission with broad authority, as it was previously done for the Russian Far East," the president said, adding that he would await specific proposals from the government.
http://rt.com/news/154028-arctic-russia-ships-subs/

E;



The body of a pro-kiev politician in the east has been found, with signs of torture.

Separatists shot down an army scout propeller plane with small arms fire.

Acting Ukraine President just gave orders to restart the "anti-terror" op in the east.



Are we getting any good idea on just how the loyalties among army/police/militia lie by now?
Last time they tried ordering in the armed forces it all kind of fizzled out, with the implication being that local army units had refused to be sent against civilians. Which is the same thing that happened when Yanu tried to use them against Maidan, so perhaps it's less disloyalty and more that the army doesn't want to shoot civilians overall?
Bet they wish they had Berkut now though, eh?

Courthouse fucked around with this message at 18:45 on Apr 22, 2014

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


SumYungGui posted:

Sorry, what? They lost me somewhere between this line and "Ukraine is falling apart, there is no government we need to annex save the Sudatenland Crimea."

Look, that elite para unit did technically surrender their arms and IFVs to a mob of drunks and grannies, but who's to say that's not just a clever ruse to get Russia to drop it's guard?


At least the surrendered IFVs are being put to good use
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UtfL54BLV7s

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Frosted Flake posted:

The 93rd Mechanized Brigade of the Ukrainian Army may be in the middle of a mutiny.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwQIC37VVuI
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QQZnJ8ZinpA

Some translation?

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


More clashes, looks like an Mi-8 just got blown out of the sky near Slovjansk.

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Looks like some OSSE officers brought in to oversee the Geneva agreement between Rus/US/EU/Ukr just got yoinked by the local militias. Not sure if this means Russia is less in control that thought, or trying to throw gravel in the gears of attempts to peaceful resolution while still looking cooperative and diplomatic.

Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Whip Slagcheek posted:

Lol if you thought the Geneva agreement meant anything at all.

Didn't even bother to read the text of it honestly, I was more referring to Russias role or lack thereof in OSSE officers getting kidnapped.

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Courthouse
Jul 23, 2013


Baloogan posted:

Fulda is pretty far behind NATO lines at this point.

NATO still has lines? Please tell me it's not red or the Polacks are hosed.

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