Sunday 29 June 2014

Ukraine civil war - update - 06/28/2014

CrossTalk: Ukrainian Crucible

Ukraine continues to be divided and there is no evidence of a ceasefire in the country. What is Poroshenko's "peace plan"? Is a political compromise possible? Or economic suicide in Ukraine is imminent? CrossTalking with Finian Cunningham, Jonathan Steele and Mark Sleboda.

Strelkov Interview & Statement

Strelkov & Militia Briefings, June 27, 2014
Combined for June 27, 2014
Translated from Russian by Gleb Bazov

Report on the OSCE Mission Visit to Slavyansk, June 27, 2014
Strelkov Info

On June 26, 2014, OSCE personnel visited and inspected the ruins of Slavyansk.

Pursuant to the attendance, [OSCE] will prepare a report, which will be provided to Kiev.

According to a member of the OSCE monitoring group, Victor Likhachev:

“This attendance by OSCE personnel in Slavyansk will enable [the organization] to compile an objective overview of the conditions in the city. Following the visit, a report will be generate that will assist in tomorrow’s peace talks.

The diplomat further commented:

“The picture is grim, there is a lot of destruction. Experts can see evidence of mortar attacks, destroyed residential buildings/homes and infrastructure. I saw Slavyansk a month ago – it was completely different.”

According to Likhachev, the foremost task of the OSCE personnel is to gather information and specific facts concerning the state of affairs in the city and in the vicinity, as well as to evaluate the humanitarian situation. It is expected that the information collected by the [OSCE] mission about the destruction [in Slavyansk] will be provided to Kiev.

En route to Slavyansk, the personnel of the organization stopped over in Kramatorsk, where they were met by one of the Militia commanders, Alexander Mozhaev, more commonly know by his nickname “Babay”.

Video of OSCE's Visit to Slavyansk

Video of OSCE's Visit to Kramatorsk

Note: in a later statement broadcast on, a representative of DPR stated that militiamen were forced to save OSCE personnel from mortar fire en route to Slavyansk and that it was the witnessing by OSCE officials of the devastation wrought upon Slavyansk that compelled Poroshenko to extend the ceasefire by 72 hours.

Briefing from Igor Strelkov, June 26, 2014, 13:05Original:

Note: an entire platoon of NazGuard [National Guard] was completely routed by Igor Strelkov's unit at the Mirniy checkpoint on June 27, 2014. The video of the aftermath is embedded above.

Yesterday evening we attacked a checkpoint of the enemy near the Mirniy settlement. At first, the enemy troops put up fierce resistance, defending with grenade launchers, but ultimately fled anyways. At the very conclusion of the battle, Ukies were hit by their own artillery units, who were ordered to fire upon any checkpoint or position penetrated by the Militia.

Our loses include one 200th [KIA – killed in action] and two 300th [WIA – wounded in action]. Both [of our] tanks that took part in the battle were hit with grenade launchers, but received no damage. The garrison of the enemy was completely routed. Two BTR-80 APCs burned down, the third was captured [by the Militia] and sent back to our rear, fully functional.

In addition, the following [trophies] were taken: 1 functional mortar “Vasilyok”, with a full set of ammunition, 1 PTURS “Fagot” system with several charges, 3 functional AGS-17 “Plamya” grenade launchers with a large set of ammunition, several automatic rifles, an enormous amount of ammunition, grenades, etc., a lot of documentation, flags, and so on.

At 04:00, the enemy launched sixteen 240mm shells at the city, aiming at wide areas.

As of this morning, intermittent shelling with the use of heavy artillery continues.

Note: video of the interview with Igor Strelkov can be found 

Statement by Igor Strelkov, June 27, 2014, 16:36Original: 
Strelkov Info

Commentary by Igor Strelkov with respect to Poroshenko’s extension of ceasefire by 72 hours.

Column after column is pushing its way toward us from Izyum – numerous! So, it’ll take them just about three days to concentrate their forces [and prepare] for attack. If we let them, of course. So, we will not be complying with any ceasefire in these circumstances. Our conditions remain unchanged – withdrawal of forces to a distance of at least 10 kilometres, cessation of artillery shelling, unblocking of communication routes.

Information from the Special Correspondent of Komsomolskaya Pravda, Dmitry Steshin, June 27, 2014, 11:22
Original: @kp_steshin 
Tweet #1 & Tweet #2

Two days ago, the only lifeline path into Slavyansk was cut off with a Ukie checkpoint. Today militiamen broke through the blockade. Two tanks were used in the assault. Several nights in a row I could hear them being repaired. … “Rovno” and “Lvov” tankists should start prepping for [corrective eye surgery].

Briefing from the Militia, June 27, 2013, 03:30
Strelkov Info

The military base in Donetsk was captured without losses on either side. All [those inside] were [regular] conscripts. We will be calling their mothers so they can take their sons home. All the officers have been placed under arrest.

Briefing from Fyodor Berezin, June 27, 2014, 10:54
Strelkov Info

Lifenews Interview with Fyodor Berezin

Fyodor Berezin's Interview (ENG-subbed)
I accepted the capitulation of the Ukrainian military base.

For two days prior [to the capitulation], we cut off the base from water supplies. Last night, the People’s Militia assaulted this military base, which is situated on the territory of Donetsk. Specifically, the attack was conducted by the “Kalmius” detachment ([Kalmius] is a river that flows through both Donetsk and Mariupol).

As the end of the many hours of battle, we were victorious. Let’s say this – it was a definitive victory. Both sides used automatic weapons, light and heavy machine guns, under-slung grenades, and grenade launchers. On our side we also had armour, albeit a single vehicle.

The “Kalmius” assault group penetrated into the territory of the military base. They captured the command personnel. Having virtually exhausted their ammunition, the Ukrainian military base was forced to surrender to the mercy of the victors.

All three companies were disarmed. There were no 200th [KIA – killed in action]. Only a small number of 300th [WIA – wounded in action]. Trophies and the military banner of the base were captured. The personnel was taken prisoner and, by 03:00, was removed from the territory [of the base].

And, so to say, something to whet your appetite. And I was there, and drank honey and beer … [Note 1]. Simply put, bullets whistled past and squished nearby. Of all different calibres. A ton of impressions.

Note 1: Berezin is roughly quoting Alexander Pushkin’s poem “Tale of the Dead Princess and the Seven Knights.”

Videos of the Assault on the Ukrainian Military Base

Report from Fyodor Berezin, June 27, 2014
Slavyansk2014 & DPR Press Twitter (@dnrpress)

According to the Donetsk People’s Republic Deputy Minister of Defence, Fyodor Berezin, militiamen have disrupted the production of several parts for Ukrainian military helicopters.

“In the city of Snezhnoye we have blockaded the factory that manufactures helicopter blades/airfoils and supplies them to “Motor-Sich”. These are the very helicopters that are [used] to bomb us.

“Motor-Sich” is one of the largest enterprises of the Ukrainian military-industrial complex, and is the largest manufacturer of engines for airplanes and helicopters in the country.”

Note: the Motor Sich Public Joint Stock Company (Ukrainian: ВАТ «Мотор Січ») in Zaporizhia is among the largest engine manufacturers for airplanes and helicopters. See 
Wikipedia and Motor Sich Corporate Website.

Commentary from Igor Strelkov, June 27, 2014, 18:30
Strelkov Info

We collected these documents on the battlefield – there was no opportunity to determine which belonged to those alive, and which – to the dead.

Photographs of the trophy documents and IDs can be found 

Unfortunately, the enemy has retaken the checkpoint. Our fighters were forced to abandon it because of harsh howitzer fire (we have one wounded [as a result]) –the position was mediocre defence-wise, and we did not have the time to entrench ourselves properly. They took it over with an “armada” – they threw 4 tanks and 8 APCs with infantry at it. Well, and we immediately lobbed 80 mortar shells there … to make sure the fresh Ukie-warriors don’t think life is all honey.

We [also] shelled the checkpoint at Krasniy Liman with one mortar when [their] column was passing through. Only 8 mines in total, and maybe got them once. In return, en entire company, 12 mortars, opened fire! A sign of respect …

Briefing from Igor Strelkov, June 27, 2014, 18:50Original:

By 15:00, following intense howitzer shelling, the enemy took back the checkpost near the Mirniy settlement, with forces that included 4 tanks and 8 APCs. The Militia avoided the engagement, due to unfavourable location of the checkpoint, and withdrew to original positions. One fighter was wounded with shrapnel.

As soon as the enemy took up the checkpoint, it was struck with a volley from our battery of 120mm mortars. The enemy suffered casualties.

Mortar exchanges continue near the settlement of Semyonovka.

Our intelligence indicates that there is a continuous transfer of detachments and units of the Ukrainian armed forces and the NazGuard [National Guard] from Izyum to Slavyansk. Their numbers, as well as their equipment, indicate that a new assault on Slavyansk and a massive shelling [campaign] are being readied.

The Militia also has information about the enemy’s readiness to use chemical weapons of so-called non-lethal character in order to render the Militia fighters inactive in advance of an actual assault on the city.

Interview with Igor Strelkov, June 27, 2014, 19:20
Strelkov Info

- with respect to the situation in Seversk:

Igor Strelkov: The concrete bridge across the Severskiy Donets [river] was blown up. The wooden bridge is functional. For now, Seversk is firmly in our control, but the enemy force, looming over us, has not disappeared – their superiority over the Militia is enormous.

- with respect to the extension of the ceasefire to June 30:

Igor Strelkov: Once again, they forgot to give us warning … We will comply only if they at least stop the movement [of their forces] in a 10-kilometre radius [around the city]. That, of course, will never happen – they are gathering forces for an assault.

- Igor Ivanovich, are there young men among the Militia? Under 30 years old? Every time they show someone on TV, the men in the camera’s eye are middle-aged.

Igor Strelkov: Yes, there are, but, alas, not too many. The “failed Pepsi generation” and those who came after them are massively among the refugees … It’s not only in Russia that the “society of unapologetic consumption” with corresponding ideals (i.e. – “Yes, I am a bastard! But, at least, I am alive and rich!) was bred and groomed.

- with respect to the “unfairly” arrested Slavyansk blogger

Igor Strelkov: They don’t even know yet that this “blogger from Enakievo” is to be put before a military tribunal by my order. The hearings will be held tomorrow. As it turns out, he did not confine himself to “defending the freedom of speech” … And he did far more than “defend.” It was not his anti-russian blog in that resulted in him being in the “penal battalion,” it was because, despite being a professional anesthesiologist, he refused to treat a woman from Kramatorsk, who was brought in with a wound. His excuse was that he refused to “help a separatist.” And these freaks dare talk to me about honour?

Information from the Militia, June 27, 2014, 14:59
Strelkov Info

Militiamen continued attacking the NazGuard checkpoint near the border crossing of Krasniy Partizan-Gukovo until midday. The result – Ukies lost 1 APC.

Information from the DPR Press Service, June 27, 2014
Strelkov Info

The fighters of the DPR militia have broken through the NazGuard positions near Seversk and entered the city.

Identity revealed

The identity of Semyon Semenchenko, commander of Nazi battalion Donbass, appears to have been established. The nome de guerre was concealing a Verhovna Rada deputy of the Svoboda (previously known as the Nationalist Socialist) Party from Odessa. On the photo he is shown during the recent capture, interrogation, and torture of 16-year old video streamer Vlad "Bessmertnyi" who worked for Anna-news in Mariupol.

Truce or false? Kiev, E. Ukraine fighters extend shaky ceasefire

The shaky truce in East Ukraine has been extended with both the army and anti-government fighters promising to recognize it. The ceasefire, which has been in place for a week, is part of attempts to bring peace to the region. RT's Maria Finoshina saw first-hand what Eastern Ukraine is like amid the promised 'peace'.

What truce? Kiev 'National Guard' lose 20 in attack on Slavyansk during ceasefire

Ukraine's President and the self-proclaimed eastern republics have extended the ceasefire until Monday - just hours before it was set to expire. Meanwhile overnight exchanges of fire near the city of Slavyansk have left casualties on both sides of the conflict

Vladimir Putin today: The decision to take back the right to send Russian troops to Ukraine as a way of assisting the initiated peace process is premised on the expectation or condition that the rights and freedoms of the people in eastern Ukraine will be safeguarded and guaranteed.

The position of the West: The Kiev regime is perfectly democratic and constitutional, and there are no Nazis in Ukraine or, at least, no Nazis should be worried about unless we choose to paint Putin and Russia that way. Actually, what happened in Kiev ought to be a model for which Russia itself ought to aspire.

VS: the elementary fact is that fascism and Banderism are by definition and by their nature incompatible not only with any rule or law or constitutional order, but above all with basic political rights and freedoms of anyone. Fascism is the doctrine of radical inequality; fascism yearns for redividing people into new masters and slaves. In this regard, the only right which fascism effectively allows is the right of death.

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