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Member since: Thu Dec 6, 2012, 01:13 PM
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About Me

"It is certain, in any case, that ignorance, allied with power, is the most ferocious enemy justice can have." James A. Baldwin

Journal Archives

Ukrainian forces trapped at Donetsk airport using artillery to shell residential areas.

The forces loyal to Kiev (thought to be foreign mercenaries) trapped by Separatist self-defense fighters in the Donetsk international airport are using artillery and rocket mortars to shell residential areas of the city itself. Casualties are increasing and damage to services is hampering attempts to contain fires.

Black smoke ascends around the Donetsk's International Airport as shelling continues between pro-Russian forces and the Ukrainian army on September 14, 2014.(AFP)

16:45 GMT:

The shelling of a residential area in Donetsk has been witnessed by a member of Russia's Presidential Council of Human Rights, Maksim Shevchenko. "We were in a car with the 'Press' marking on it, with a police car escorting us through Donetsk, when five to six mortar strikes hit the area," Shevchenko said, adding that it was a densely populated part of the city, containing no military equipment. According to the official, a police officer escorting the group and several civilians were killed in the attack.

Shevchenko told Rusisa’s Itar-Tass news agency that he would report the event to higher ranking officials, including the president, as he considered it "a violation of the cease-fire by Kiev and a military crime."

14:56 GMT:

Dozens of houses have been destroyed in the Donetsk Region, eastern Ukraine, the Defence Ministry of the self-proclaimed People’s Republic of Donetsk said in a statement. "We can exactly speak of five people dead… among the victims is a 15-year-old,” the ministry said. According to Donetsk authorities, Ukrainian troops fired artillery shells from the city’s airport.

12:41 GMT:

Heavy fighting has been reported in the area around Donetsk airport, where a group of armed men of unknown nationality has been holed up for weeks. The armed men trapped in the airport are firing using conventional artillery and multiple rocket launch systems. Some private homes have reportedly been damaged near the airport. “It appears the defenders are using all firepower they have at their disposal,” the Defense Ministry of the Donetsk People’s Republic said.


Read more at: http://rt.com/news/152680-eastern-ukraine-army-operation/
Posted by another_liberal | Sun Sep 14, 2014, 01:06 PM (28 replies)

Second Russian overland relief convoy returning from Lugansk.

The second road convoy of trucks carrying relief supplies from Russia to the people of Lugansk has delivered its cargo and returned to Russian territory. One hopes this so far torturous process for providing much needed aid will soon become easier, swifter and more common place.

Unloading of Russian humanitarian aid in the city Lugansk in south-eastern Ukraine.

E.Ukraine’s Lugansk to start distributing Russian aid Monday, trucks return home

The last truck from Russia’s second humanitarian aid convoy to the Eastern Ukrainian city of Lugansk has returned home after delivering its cargo. All vehicles had reached the Ukrainian-Russian border without incidents and the last of them crossed the border in the direction of Russia at around 6:30 pm local time (2:30 pm GMT). Early on Saturday, a convoy of 245 trucks colored in white paint crossed the border and headed to Lugansk to bring much needed relief supplies to the residents of the war-torn city.

The 2,000 tons of Russian humanitarian aid include food, power generators, water purification systems, medicine and blankets. The convoy was welcomed by the population of Lugansk as people lined up on the sides of the roads and waved Russian flags. After unloading in Lugansk, the trucks made their way back to Russia’s Rostov region, which is bordering Ukraine.

The second Russian convoy has arrived just in time as the city almost ran out of first batch of humanitarian aid delivered on August 22, Valery Potapov, deputy prime minister of the self-proclaimed People’s Republic of Donetsk, said. “The supplies from the first convoy have almost ended. We still have a small amount of canned meat, but we had to use our own stock to provide people with sugar and cereal,” Potapov told RIA-Novosti news agency. The handout of the aid to the people will begin in Lugansk on Monday, he said.

Potapov added that its “more or less calm because of the so-called the cease-fire” and “people began returning (to their homes) en masse”, which makes it difficult to predict how long the aid will last. Meanwhile, Ukraine claimed that the second Russian humanitarian aid convoy entered the country illegally. Ukrainian border officials were not allowed to inspect the cargo, Col. Andrey Lysenko, spokesman for Ukraine's National Security Council, said. But Russia’s Federal Security Service has denied the claims, saying that it offered full cooperation to the Ukrainian side.


Read more at: http://rt.com/news/187620-russia-second-convoy-lugansk/
Posted by another_liberal | Sat Sep 13, 2014, 06:11 PM (2 replies)

Russia is not my cause, and they are responsible for their own crimes . . .

I am primarily concerned that we in the United States now own the blame for a resurgence of ultra-nationalist fascism in Ukraine. We have literally cultivated that movement's members as reliably violent, even murderous pawns in our ceaseless efforts to expand the American political and economic empire. Driven by greed and lust for power our economic, military and political leaders (with a little help from some of our allies) have practically ruined the nation known as Ukraine.

In their hurry to finish the job of stealing a sovereign country from its democratically elected government, our leaders have actually condoned, even encouraged, the formation of heavily armed, openly fascist fighting units within the Ukrainian army. That alone is a serious crime against all of mankind.

My purpose is to help ensure that kind of odious interference in the internal affairs of other nations is not done any more by the Untied States, and, hopefully, that those responsible for us doing such things now are punished.
Posted by another_liberal | Sat Sep 13, 2014, 04:46 PM (1 replies)

Second Russian aid convoy enters eastern Ukraine.

Despite continued Ukrainian delaying tactics, intended to keep up the pressure on civilians in besieged Separatist enclaves, a second convoy of much needed Russian relief supplies is finally moving westward across the border.

A Russian convoy of trucks carrying humanitarian aid for Ukraine are parked by the side of a road near Kamensk-Shakhtinsky, Rostov Region, September 12, 2014 (Reuters)

First trucks of Russia’s second Ukraine aid convoy cross border

The first 70 trucks in Russia’s 2nd convoy carrying long-awaited humanitarian aid for the devastated areas of eastern Ukraine have crossed the border after weeks of delays, despite an agreement on relief corridors as part of Minsk ceasefire deal.

Residents of war-ravaged eastern Ukraine are living for many weeks on the brink of a humanitarian catastrophe. The aid delivery is crucial as parts of the country remain blocked by government troops limiting food supplies, while the infrastructure destroyed in shellings left the residents of Lugansk without electricity and drinking water.

The first trucks had passed through Russia’s ‘Donetsk’ checkpoint into the buffer zone shortly before midnight on Friday, local customs spokesman Rayan Farukshin told RIA Novosti. Trucks then had to wait for some five hours to get clearance from Russian customs officers and their Ukrainian collegues for further movement.

This is the second Russian shipment of humanitarian relief for Ukraine, and just like with the first shipment of goods, the Ukrainian authorities are being over-scrupulous in letting the aid in, keeping it at the border. The aid delivery has been delayed because Kiev did not fulfill the preliminary plan coordinated with Russia three weeks ago, Stepanov said. “We've been waiting for Kiev's response,” he said on Thursday. He described the convoy as carrying about 2,000 tons of foods, medicine, water purification equipment, and power generators and other consignments, all donations from various regions of Russia.


Read more at: http://rt.com/news/187460-russian-aid-convoy-ukraine/

Posted by another_liberal | Fri Sep 12, 2014, 10:26 PM (13 replies)

One hundred Islamic State trained fighters feared to be in Germany.

As the news update below suggests, there may now be as many as one hundred Islamic State terrorists in Germany. According to our new anti-terror doctrine, which justifies attacking IS fighters inside other Sovereign States (with or without their permission) will the citizens of Hamburg, Essen and Berlin now need to keep an eye out for American F-18s? If "anywhere they hide" applies to Syrian territory, why not German as well?

Germany bans Islamic State to prevent recruitment, attacks

Germany has banned the Islamic State in order to prevent the militants from recruiting young jihadists in Germany or from using fighters returning to Europe to carry out attacks. “The terrorist organization Islamic State is a threat to public safety in Germany as well,” Reuters quoted Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere as saying. Over 400 Germans have reportedly joined IS in Iraq and Syria and about 40 have died, some in suicide attacks. More than 100 jihadists are back in Germany including “some with combat experience who have learned to hate,” the minister said.


Posted by another_liberal | Fri Sep 12, 2014, 06:56 PM (0 replies)

Turkey and Jordan say no to attacking IS in Syria.

Perhaps we should listen to the concerns of our allies who border on Syria? Might it not be a good idea to hold off on bombing another sovereign nation's territory without its permission? That kind of unprovoked, unilateral action is generally classified as "An Act of War."

Turkish soldiers stand guard on the Turkish-Syrian border in the town of Ceylanpinar, Sanliurfa province (Reuters)

ISIS neighbors have cold feet over US bombing plans

Key US allies, Turkey and Jordan are thought to backing away from US calls for a 'bomb ISIS' coalition. After President Obama’s declaration of a campaign against the IS militants, who took over swaths of Syria and Iraq in a bid to create a fundamentalist Islamist state, Secretary of State John Kerry traveled to Saudi Arabia to drum up support from 10 key Arab nations and Turkey for the effort.

A notable absentee among the nations that signed a joint communiqué after the meeting and vowed to contribute “as appropriate” is Turkey. The NATO member borders both Syria and Iraq from the north, but it will not allow to use its facilities in operations against the Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS), government official in Ankara told AFP. “Turkey will not be involved in any armed operation but will entirely concentrate on humanitarian operations,” the official said on condition of anonymity. He added that Ankara would not even supply weapons to whoever would fight against the IS. The position is reminiscent of the 2003 US invasion of Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, when Turkey refused to allow the US station 60,000 in the country or use its airfields to launch sorties on Iraq.

The official explained that Turkey’s hands on the matter are tied because the IS militants hold hostage 49 Turkish citizens, including diplomatic staff and their families. The Turks were captured by the extremists in a consulate in Mosul, when the Iraqi city was captured in a lighting offensive in June.


The inflow of arms, which would be part of the US-led anti-IS campaign is a matter of concern for another neighbor of both Syria and Iraq, Jordan. The Arab ally of Washington is concerned with the plans to arm and train more fighters of the Free Syrian Army, a supposedly moderate militant force fighting against the Syrian government.


Read more at: http://rt.com/news/187220-us-isis-coalition-turkey/

Posted by another_liberal | Fri Sep 12, 2014, 07:12 AM (9 replies)

Updates on the ceasefire in eastern Ukrainian Donetsk and Lugansk Republics.

Be sure to watch the video linked to at the close of this OP (09:06 GMT). It includes quite revealing interviews with individual Separatist self-defense fighters.

Thursday, September 11

17:05 GMT:

Russia’s Foreign Ministry has reiterated that Russian troops have not been in Ukraine and they are not there now. However, there have been volunteers from Russia, spokesman Aleksandr Lukashevich said.

“The Russian army is not fighting there. There are volunteers who could not stay away from those events happening in Donetsk and Lugansk regions,” he said. At the same time, he said that no one was paying attention to foreign mercenaries fighting in Eastern Ukraine. “No one questions on which basis, under which international legal norms, mercenaries are fighting on the side of the regular army of Ukraine,” Lukashevich said.

16:57 GMT:

Ukraine's National Security Council (SNBO) has reinforced its forces at the frontline in the southeast of the country, its spokesman Andrey Lysenko said.

09:06 GMT:

The shaky ceasefire holds in eastern Ukraine, but there is little certainty that it will lead to peace and not renewed hostilities, rebel fighters told RT’s Paula Slier. They fear that Kiev loyalist troops will use the lull to regroup and attack again.


Read more, and view video, at: http://rt.com/news/eastern-ukraine-army-operation-680/

Posted by another_liberal | Thu Sep 11, 2014, 09:04 PM (0 replies)

Russia warns of response to new EU sanctions.

The Russian Foreign Ministry has warned trading partners within the European Union that it will respond in kind to any new sanctions leveled against Russia by that organization. This comes on the heels of news that the EU has had to suspend payments from a "compensation fund" established to reimburse farmers and others hurt by the loss of Russian markets for European agricultural products. It seems the amount of such claims far outstripped the one hundred million Euro sum allocated for such reimbursement.

Moscow to give 'appropriate' response to new EU sanctions

Moscow will take “appropriate measures” in response to possible new sanctions from the European Union, the Russian Foreign Ministry's spokesperson said. Aleksandr Lukashevich said that the Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash in eastern Ukraine in July has been used as a pretext by the West to push through economic sanctions against Russia.

However, the true reasons behind the tragedy may not be revealed at all due to external pressure on the international commission investigating the MH17 crash, he said. “It seems that the international commission – under pressure by certain Western powers – is deliberately delaying the investigation and not executing its duties, which is obvious to any aviation expert. As a result, the reasons for the tragedy may not be established and not announced at all,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Aleksandr Lukashevich said.

The EU has said that it will implement sanctions against Russia on Friday, which will reportedly include economic measures against Russia’s energy sector. EU leaders first said they would unleash the latest round of sanctions on September 9, but instead waited to gauge the effectiveness of the ceasefire agreed on September 5 by the Ukrainian government and rebel forces. Many heads of state, including Chancellor Merkel, said the European Commission will have the ability to suspend the new economic restrictions if the ceasefire in Ukraine continues to keep peace.

In response to the EU’s previous set of sanctions that targeted banks, energy, and weaponry, Moscow introduced a one-year food embargo against the US, EU, Norway, Australia, and Canada that is estimated to block $9 billion worth of agricultural exports to Russia.

See updates and more details at: http://rt.com/news/187000-sanctions-russia-adequate-response/

Posted by another_liberal | Thu Sep 11, 2014, 08:50 AM (2 replies)

Russia calls for a thorough, international investigation of MH17 disaster.

Russia's United Nations Representative, Vtaly Churkin, is clearly dissatisfied with the Dutch Safety Board's "preliminary report" on the Malaysian Airlines MH17 disaster. His calls for a "truly international" investigation of the incident were echoed by the Russian Foreign Ministry, which demanded a "maximally transparent" international commission, ". . . fulfilling all norms of the International Civil Aviation Organization."

Russian U.N. Representative Vitaly Churkin.(AFP)

Dutch preliminary MH17 crash report leaves too many questions

A “truly” international investigation of the Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash in eastern Ukraine is required, Russia’s UN envoy, Vitaly Churkin, said, adding that there are too many blank spots in the newly released Dutch report on the tragedy. The document, released by the Dutch Safety Board (DSB) on Tuesday, said that the Malaysian Boeing-777 crash was the result of structural damage caused by a large number of high-energy objects that struck it from the outside.

“It is very hard to call this investigation a truly international one. Many questions have been left unanswered. There are too many omissions,” Churkin said in an interview with the Rossiya-24 channel. The Dutch report “did little to advance our understanding of what happened,” only confirming what was already known before, he stressed. It says that the Malaysian plane “didn’t fall by itself, but was shot down. However no further thoughts in this regard are being presented,” the envoy said.

According to Churkin, Dutch investigators have also completely ignored the issue of at least one Ukrainian warplane that reportedly was in midair near the Malaysian plane when the disaster occurred on July 17. “The report says another three commercial airliners were cruising in the vicinity at the moment of tragedy, but it does not say anything if Ukrainian warplanes were there, too. Our Defense Ministry said at least one military jet might have been there and eyewitnesses also say they saw one or two jets in the sky,” Churkin stressed, “For some reason however the problem is bypassed,” he added.

It also looks “very strange” that the text of the DSB report doesn’t say a word about the UN Security Council's resolution on MH17, the envoy said. “This resolution speaks about the need for conducting a thorough independent international investigation, not to mention the fact that it contains an important provision about the cease-fire in the area of the crash,” he explained. With so many blank spots, Russia would like to see more transparency and less “mystery” surrounding the investigation. “Of course, certain discretion in the investigation is necessary, but it isn’t clear why some things aren’t brought to the attention of the public."


Read more at: http://rt.com/news/186812-mh17-report-russia-churkin/
Posted by another_liberal | Thu Sep 11, 2014, 07:22 AM (0 replies)

The President says we will bomb IS targets in Syria.

If American bombs do begin falling on Syrian territory, unanticipated things could start happening very quickly. This is not a game we are playing at, the consequences could come to directly impact all of us. The responses to such a reckless escalation may be unpredictable, but are likely to be profound and thoroughly unpleasant for everyone.

US President Barack Obama.(AFP)

‘No safe haven’: Obama declares airstrikes on Islamic State ‘wherever it exists’

President Barack Obama has addressed the American people, outlining his plan to authorize broader US military involvement in hunting down the fighters of the notorious Islamic State jihadist group in Iraq, Syria and “wherever they exist.” President Barack Obama in his public address to the American people announced that the US will "conduct a systematic campaign of airstrikes against these terrorists. I have made it clear that we will hunt down terrorists who threaten our country, wherever they are," Obama stated. "That means I will not hesitate to take action against ISIL in Syria, as well as Iraq. This is a core principle of my presidency: if you threaten America, you will find no safe haven.”

The President’s strategy in Syria will also be to support opposition forces for which he again called on Congress to give the US government "additional authorities and resources to train and equip these fighters. In the fight against ISIL, we cannot rely on an Assad regime that terrorizes its people; a regime that will never regain the legitimacy it has lost. Instead, we must strengthen the opposition as the best counterweight to extremists like ISIL, while pursuing the political solution necessary to solve Syria’s crisis once and for all, “ Obama said.

In the meantime in Iraq, President Obama’s strategy will be to support the Iraqi government to fight IS as they will be the one to ultimately defeat it in Iraq, he said. “Working with the Iraqi government, we will expand our efforts beyond protecting our own people and humanitarian missions so that we’re hitting ISIL targets as Iraqi forces go on offense,” he said according to the White House fact sheet.

Barack Obama has also announced sending another "475 service members to Iraq to support Iraqi and Kurdish forces with training, intelligence and equipment. These service members will join the several hundred American service members sent to Iraq in June to assess how best to support Iraqi Security,” he added. The plan however still does not involve “American combat troops fighting on foreign soil,” the President said.


Read more at: http://rt.com/usa/186840-obama-islamic-state-address/
Posted by another_liberal | Wed Sep 10, 2014, 10:23 PM (9 replies)
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