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Wicked Blue

Profile Information

Gender: Female
Hometown: Maryland
Home country: United States
Member since: Tue Aug 11, 2020, 09:58 PM
Number of posts: 5,483

Journal Archives

Support Ukraine on Sunday, March 6th in DC

National rally to support Ukraine, 2 p.m. Lafayette Square by the White House

Ukrainian National Information Service

Wild crazy Finns trying to blast holes in concrete

I could not stop laughing. Three English-speaking Finns experimenting with different ways to blast holes into a slab of concrete. It's 12 minutes, 5 seconds, but awesome all the way to the end.

Ukraine: Amateurs dig in to fight Russian troops from Kyiv forests

By Orla Guerin
BBC News, Kyiv, Ukraine

Checkpoints, barricades, and roadblocks radiate from the imposing streets in the city centre to the motorways on the outskirts. Spiky metal tank traps - called hedgehogs - have mushroomed at strategic locations. Troops are more alert, checking every car. Some still smile and say "welcome", but many look distracted, already focusing on the battle to come.

It feels like Ukrainian forces in the capital are poised and ready to fight. This ancient city - with its elegant facades and onion domed churches - is now on a war footing.

Russia's advance has clearly not gone to plan for President Vladimir Putin. With the invasion now in its second week, his troops and tanks are still outside the capital - but maybe not for long. Ukrainian forces we spoke to on Thursday expect the Russians to reach Kyiv in a day or two.

So, deep in a forest on the outskirts of the city, men from Ukraine's territorial defence units are digging trenches.


Putin and the Oligarchy, as explained by the Cockroach Army

The left side page describes Putin and his Russian government pretty well.

From an old Fat Freddy's Cat cartoon by Gilbert Shelton

US put 'Doomsday Plane' into the air this week after Putin nuclear threat

Common Dreams via RawStory

The so-called "doomsday plane"—an aircraft modified by the U.S. military to be operated as a mobile command post and protect the president and high-ranking officials in the event of a high-level disaster—went on a reportedly unusual four-hour flight Monday following a perceived nuclear threat by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

According to multiple news reports, citing military flight tracking websites, the modified Boeing 747, using the call sign GORDO15, made a round-trip flight from a U.S. Air Force base in Nebraska to Chicago.

While the aircraft engage in regular testing missions, Monday's flight was unusual, iNews reported, because the plane was accompanied by two Cobra Ball jets with the ability to track ballistic missile data.

The over $200 million "doomsday plane" is part of a fleet of E-4 series aircraft which have been militarized from a Boeing 747-200B to function as the National Airborne Operations Center. The E-4s have been in use since the 1970s, and at least one of the planes is kept on alert at all times.


Ukraine says talks with Russia agreed on humanitarian corridors

Source: Reuters

(Reuters) - A Ukrainian negotiator said on Thursday that a second round of ceasefire talks with Russia had not yielded the results Kyiv hoped for, but the sides had reached an understanding on creating humanitarian corridors to evacuate civilians.

Ukrainian presidential adviser Mykhailo Podolyak said the two sides envisaged a possible temporary ceasefire to allow for the evacuation of civilians.

"That is, not everywhere, but only in those places where the humanitarian corridors themselves will be located, it will be possible to cease fire for the duration of the evacuation," he said.

They had also reached an understanding on the delivery of medicines and food to the places where the fiercest fighting was taking place.

Read more: https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/world/ukraine-says-talks-with-russia-agreed-on-humanitarian-corridors/ar-AAUzoKN

Georgia formally applies for EU membership

Source: MSN

Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili said on Thursday that his country had officially applied for membership in the European Union.

"We are applying today for EU membership," Garibashvili said in a statement after signing the application letter, according to dpa news agency. "Georgia is a European state and continues to make a valuable contribution to its protection and development," he added.

Georgia's move comes after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy urged his country's membership amid Russia's ongoing invasion.

Both Georgia and Ukraine are former Soviet states that fear a renewed takeover by Russia.

Read more: https://www.msn.com/en-xl/news/other/georgia-formally-applies-for-eu-membership/ar-AAUz8M1

Canada to raise tariffs on Russian imports, send rocket launchers to Ukraine

March 3 (Reuters) - Canada will remove Russia and Belarus's most favoured nation status as trading partners, and will provide additional lethal aid to Ukraine, including rocket launchers and hand grenades, Canadian officials said Thursday.

The only other country that does not enjoy the most favoured nation status with Canada is North Korea, and goods from Russia and Belarus will be subjected to a 35% tariff when imported into Canada, Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland said.

"Simply put, this means that Russia and Belarus will no longer receive the benefits, particularly low tariffs that Canada offers to other countries that are fellow members of the WTO," Freeland told reporters at a news conference.

Canada had about C$1.2 billion ($948 million) in imports from Russia and about C$23 million from Belarus in 2020, according to Statistics Canada.


UPDATE: Estonian-owned cargo ship sinks off Odesa after Russian action

Two cargo ships hit by blasts around Ukraine, one seafarer killed

LONDON/DHAKA, March 3 (Reuters) - An Estonian-owned cargo ship sank on Thursday off Ukraine's major Black Sea port of Odessa, hours after a Bangladeshi vessel was hit by a missile or bomb at a port east of Odessa, underlining the growing peril to merchant shipping after Russia's invasion of Ukraine

...Late on Wednesday, a missile or bomb struck a Bangladeshi-owned cargo ship in the Black Sea port of Olvia, killing one of its crew members. Efforts were underway to rescue the others from the vessel, its owner said on Thursday.


The Helt's crew consisted of one Russian, one Belarusian and four Ukrainians, according to ERR

ERR - Estonian Public Broadcasting

An Estonian-owned cargo ship has been reported sinking in the Black Sea, off the coast of the port city Odesa, the result of an explosion thought to have been caused by striking a sea mine. The ship is one of many reported to have been used by Russian naval forces as a type of human shield, ahead of an amphibious landing planned for Odesa.

As of Thursday afternoon, the vessel, a cargo ship named the Helt was sinking, with a heavy list, maritime news site Maritime Bulletin reports, citing Ukrainian sources.

U.K. paper the Daily Mail reported on its website that four crew members were still missing, while two have abandoned ship by using a lifeboat, and that the ship struck a mine after having been hijacked by Russian forces. Reuters also reports mine-strike as the likely cause of the initial explosion.

All six crew members have since been safely accounted for, the Estonian foreign ministry says. None of the six were Estonian citizens, the ministry added.


The Helt had reportedly been captured by the Russian Navy and used by them as a shield from direct fire, the Daily Mail reports

BTW It was flying a Marshall Islands flag

Key Asian nations join global backlash against Russia, with an eye toward China

Washington Post
By Ellen Nakashima, John Hudson, Michelle Ye Hee Lee and Cate Cadell

When Japan in recent days announced an aggressive set of sanctions to punish Russia for its invasion of Ukraine, it wasn’t just Moscow it wished to signal, according to U.S. and Asian officials.

It was also China.

Japan, not typically a sanctions hawk, wanted to ensure that Beijing drew the right lesson from Russia’s invasion of a weaker neighbor. Moscow would pay a high price.

Some key countries in East Asia are joining with the West to take what is for them the exceptional step of imposing significant financial sanctions, officials and analysts say, brought together by outrage at Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and concern over China’s growing aggression in the region.


Article says the nations are Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and Singapore.
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