Friday, 20 February 2015

News from Ukraine - 02/19/2015

Debaltsevo fallout in Banderastan

An EU Coalition of the Willing? 

The Vineyard of the Saker,
19 February, 2015

When I first heard of Poroshenko's latest idea about sending peacekeepers to the Ukraine, I had figured that he was talking about UN peacekeepers, the only ones with any possible legality for such an operation.  Turns out I had "misunderestimated" Poroshenko.  His idea is even crazier: he wants *EU* "peacekeepers"!  This is what the official website of the President of the Ukraine says:
Ukraine considers the EU mission in the framework of the Common Security and Defense Policy the best option of peacekeeping operation in Donbas, as stated by President Petro Poroshenko at the meeting with Commissioner for European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations Johannes Hahn in Kyiv.

The Head of State has outlined clear position: "Russia, as country-aggressor, cannot and will not take part in the peacekeeping operation". "Ukraine will not agree to a peacekeeping format, which threatens to legalize thousands of Russian militaries – we already have enough such "peacekeepers"," Petro Poroshenko noted.
The President has informed on the decision of the National Security and Defense Council to appeal to the UN Security Council with a request for an international peacekeeping mission to ensure the preservation of peace in Donbas and control the Ukrainian-Russian border in Donetsk and Luhansk regions. "The format of the European Union Police Mission is preferable," the President added

Am I the only one who is detecting a distinctly American "handwriting" behind this latest idea?  Look again: the idea is this - first go to the UN and when the Russians and Chinese veto it, then turn to the EU and use EU states to make a "coalition of the willing".  Why?  Let me spell out the rationale here:

The prime goal of the USA was to get Russia to militarily intervene in the Donbass to trigger a continental war.  Now that this has clearly failed, they want the Europeans to enter the Donbass with exactly the same goal.  Once the EU peacekeepers are deployed, all it would take is a bloody false flag (an artillery strike, or a bomb) killing enough EU peacekeepers to raise the immediate need to protect them.  Except that the EU does not have any "EU armed forces" so can you guess who would be sent it?  Exactly - NATO.

Will the Europeans fall for that?  I doubt it.  Even the Eurocretins seemed to have lost their taste for crazy US Neocon schemes.  Besides, Russia is not Serbia and there is no way the EU will bypass the UNSC for a military operation, not without triggering a huge political crisis inside Europe.  To me this latest plans smacks of something McCain and Saakashvili could have cooked up and not something coming out of this White House.  God knows I have no sympathy for the Obama Administration or for the Eurocretins in Brussels, but this latest stunt is dumb even by their standards.

Poroshenko and his victorious troops celebrate their newest victory!

Die Fahne hoch! Die Reihen fest geschlossen! SA marschiert mit ruhig festem Schritt. (The flag on high! The ranks tightly closed! The SA march with quiet, steady step. Horst Wessel Lied - Nazi anthem)

Looks like the Nazi death squads are on the march again, this time they are looking at Kiev.  Thirteen death-squad (aka "volunteer battalion") leaders have now declared that they are forming their own military command under the command of the notorious Semen Semenchenko. Officially, they are not in any way opposed to the current regime, so said Semenchenko, but in reality their rank and file members are pretty clear about what they want to do: organize a third Maidan and toss out Poroshenko.  What makes these 21st century version of the SA so dangerous for Poroshenko it that he, unlike Hitler, does not have a 21st century version of the SS to eliminate them all overnight.  In fact, according to many reports the entire southern part of the rump-Ukraine is now "Kolomoiski-land" fully under the control of the oligarch who finances these death-squads.  Add to this the fact that most of the Rada is composed of the very same battalion commanders and assorted Nazi freaks, and you will why Poroshenko is now very much in danger.
The next leaders of Banderastan?

Poroshenko can try to present the Debaltsevo disaster as a huge victory, but apparently everybody in the Ukraine knows the truth and that, in turn, designates Poroshenko as the ideal scape-goat and culprit for what happened.   The sad reality is that there is simply nobody in the Ukraine capable of disarming these so-called "volunteer battalions".  There are now thousands of uniformed Nazi freaks roaming around with guns who can now impose their law of the jungle on everybody.  It sure looks like the future of Banderastan will be something like a mix of Somalia and Mad Max - a failed state, a comprehensively destroyed economy, a collapsed social order and the law of armed gangs of thugs.

In a couple of days it will be one year since the US-backed Nazis took power in Kiev and when I think of what they have "achieved" in such a short period of time I wonder if the idiots who were jumping on the Maidan and screaming "he who does not jump is a Moskal" and "glory to the Ukraine! to the heroes glory!" had any idea that their actions would completely destroy the country which they wanted to bring into the EU.

The Saker

A few loose ends about Debaltsevo

"Dragon_First_1" has posted a detailed analysis of the forces which have actually succeeded in getting out of the Debaltsevo Cauldron.  The original Russian text is here:

The Google machine translation is here:

Novorussian sources estimate the number of killed junta forces at about 3'500.

As for Poroshenko, apparently "buoyed" by the recent "victory" of his forces, he is now asking for UN peacekeepers.  Peacekeepers serve two functions: the main one, to keep the peace, but also a 2nd much less advertised one: to keep a line of contact in place.  So translated from "diplomatise" into English, Poroshenko is now asking for UN help to keep the line of contact were it currently is.  To fully measure his distress and panic, consider that putting down a line of peacekeepers would also nullify (at least in theory) any possibility for the Kiev junta to attack Novorussia again.  So in essence, Poroshenko is now willing to give up Novorussia in exchange for a guarantee that the Novorussians will not push further.

This is all purely theoretical.  In reality, the AngloZionist and the Croats did attack the UN Protected Areas in Croatia and ethnically cleanse them from Serbs (the local UN battalion commanders got a direct order from the attacking forces to step aside and not move; they complied).

In an ominous sign for the junta, Russia has rejected the Ukrainian idea.

As for the junta, out of rage and spite, they have cut off energy supplies to Novorussia.  The Kremlin and Gazprom are now working on an emergency plan to provide Russian energy.

The Saker

DPR POW prison: journalists visited UA POWs to see the conditions they're being 

held in

Captive "Azov" regiment trooper press conference Donetsk 19/02/15

CrossTalk: Cold-shoulder War

As the West and Russia face off over Ukraine, it is fair to ask whether this conflict represents a much larger struggle. Are we actually witnessing the Third World War being played out? If this is in fact true, what kind of war is it and who is winning?

CrossTalking with George Szamuely, John Laughland, and Graham Allison.

Canadians and Ukrainians for supplies! (Video)

February 19, 2015
Novorossia TV
Translated by Kristina Rus

00:00 - 13:00

NAF commander Terek is in charge of a drone recon unit of the First Slavyansk battalion. His unit of 25 people works with drones doing intelligence gathering near Debaltsevo.

Military correspondents of Novorossia TV delivered humanitarian aid to the unit from humanitarian battalion "Novorossia." Some deliveries are addressed to specific units and fighters.

- Is this a good bulletproof vest?

- It's average, so so, but better then nothing.

- I am wearing a police one.

- If you crawl on the ground, the pockets start to tear. The detachable pockets are better.

The correspondents asked commander Terek, what they need.

- Thermal boots, or at least warm leather boots

- Everything is mined, there are not enough sappers, so we use drones to save the lives of our fighters who go on recon missions.

- We need thermal underwear, thermal socks, thin warm hats under helmets, tactical gloves, knee pads and elbow pads.

This is regarding the personal equipment, but as far as military equipment we have plenty of trophies left by Ukrainian troops. New drones. You know they had truckloads left in Nikishino. When they run, they leave everything behind. Were do you think our drones come from?

We do need radios with closed channels. They cost 25 000 roubles, unfortunately. At least a few would be nice. We had to shut them off in Nikishino. Because their artillery works on signal very well, they strike on the signal of our drones.

We need serious things, because they get serious things from America and Europe.

- Night vision goggles - at least couple, not to stumble on their positions.

- We have nothing to charge the radios, phones with, no heat, we need generators, better diesel - because there are problems with gasoline.

- We got dry meals, thermal underwear, hygiene products for women. Thank you to the Russian brothers for helping us! The war showed who is our friend and who is our enemy.

A large amount of ammo and equipment was left by the Ukrainian troops.

- We got lists of who was in Redkodub, even with phone numbers.

Tank ammo, Vasilek ammo, 82 mm grenades, 120 mm grenades, RPG, 762, TURs.

We are almost on a frontline.

This is ammo left by the Ukrainian troops in Redkodub.

This is only a tenth part, a lot has been taken out already.

Mines, bullets, we are not supposed to have anything else.

Several Ural truckloads were taken out just by our brigade.

American, NATO helmets, goggles, about 40 bulletproof vests, good quality, neck protection, 4th generation.

- So you got your own humanitarian aid from Ukrainian volunteers?

- Canadian helmet with excellent quality. Comfortable. Thank you to Canadians and Ukrops for delieveries of supplies!

- Ukrainian army left us some excellent weapons, 120 mortar in great condition.

TUR - anti-tank rocket system

- Why does a mortar unit need TUR?

- We want to be prepared for any breakthrough. We have our own TUR, RPG, muhi, now we are not just a mortar, but a mobil assault brigade!!! 

In a Facebook message on Thursday the Donbas battalion commander-turned Verkhovnaya Rada deputy Semen Semenchenko warned President Petro Poroshenko about his inner circle lying to him about the real state of things on the frontlines

Moscow criticized Kiev's plan to invite an EU police force under the EU’s aegis for a peacekeeping mission in war-torn eastern Ukraine, saying the move would undermine the Minsk ceasefire agreement.

Ukraine’s new Finance Minister Natalie Jaresko, who has become the face of reform for the U.S.-backed regime in Kiev and will be a key figure handling billions of dollars in Western financial aid, was at the center of insider deals and other questionable activities when she ran a $150 million U.S.-taxpayer-financed investment fund.

Prior to taking Ukrainian citizenship and becoming Finance Minister last December, Jaresko was a former U.S. diplomat who served as chief executive officer of the Western NIS Enterprise Fund (WNISEF), which was created by Congress in the 1990s and overseen by the U.S. Agency for International Development (U.S. AID) to help jumpstart an investment economy in Ukraine.

But Jaresko, who was limited to making $150,000 a year at WNISEF under the U.S. AID grant agreement, managed to earn more than that amount, reporting in 2004 that she was paid $383,259 along with $67,415 in expenses, according to WNISEF’s public filing with the Internal Revenue Service.

Up to 3,500 Kiev servicemen trapped in the Debaltsevo pocket in eastern Ukraine have been killed, the head of the self-proclaimed Donetsk people’s republic said on Thursday.

"We have completed an operation on clearing Debaltsevo," Alexander Zakharchenko was quoted by the Donetsk news agency as saying. "Unfortunately, Ukrainian authorities have failed to listen to reason and lay down arms," he said.

"The losses of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in the pocket are estimated at around 3,000-3,500," Zakharchenko said.

Ukraine has agreed to increase the cost of gas to consumer by 280 percent, and 66 percent for heating, as part of the IMF terms for getting extra financial aid, says Valery Gontareva the head of the National Bank of Ukraine.

"From now on, in accordance with our joint program with the IMF, the tariffs will see rather a sharp increase of 280 percent for gas and about 66 percent for heat," said Gontareva Wednesday during the 11th Dragon Capital investment conference in Kiev. She added that as a result inflation will be 25-26 percent by the end of 2015.

Донецкая Народная Республика перешла на использование газа, поступающего напрямую из РФ

The Russian prime minister has ordered to provide humanitarian aid to the citizens of Debaltsevo and other settlemets in the conflict zone, including the gas supplies

Poroshenko said that almost 2,500 Ukrainian soldiers left the city of Debaltseve in southeastern Ukraine.

The snapshots of the truck-mounted SA-22 Pantsir surface-to-air missile system appeared on the web and on social networks, but for some strange reason the time and date they were taken differed from what appears on these very same photos published earlier.

British diplomats released photographs on Wednesday of what they described as Russia's advanced anti-aircraft artillery system allegedly being used in eastern Ukraine, saying it was further proof of Russia's military involvement in the conflict.

The snapshots of the truck-mounted SA-22 Pantsir surface-to-air missile system appeared on the web and on social networks, but for some strange reason the time and date they were taken differed from what appears on these very same photos published earlier.

Brokering power: US role in Ukraine coup hard to overlook

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden (L, back) attends a meeting with deputies of the Ukrainian parliament in Kiev, April 22, 2014 (Reuters / Valentyn Ogirenko)

19 February, 2015

After months of denying having a hand in the Ukrainian coupe, US President Barack Obama admitted playing power broker for the “transition.” This probably falls short of America’s actual involvement.

Washington was investing heavily in Ukraine long before the Maidan protests started in Kiev in 2013. According to Victoria Nuland, the State Department’s top diplomat for Europe, since 1991 America has poured $5 billion of taxpayers’ money into what she called assisting Ukrainians in building “democratic skills and institutions.”
Some of the money went into sponsoring various NGOs, political parties and media outlets. For instance,, an internet-based television channel created in summer 2013, received a grant of some $50,000 from the US embassy. The channel provided full-time coverage of the Maidan protests and gave a platform to various opposition figures.

Such funding is a well-known tool of the American government. Washington describes it as promoting a positive change and denies accusations that it gives money to get leverage to pursue its own goals in targeted countries. But in Ukraine US officials played a far more prominent role than simply funding local players.
Some like film director Oliver Stone even call it a US-staged coup, while former US Congressman Ron Paul called for the US to stop meddling in Ukraine.

Nuland’s cookies

A parade of Western officials descended on Kiev to support the protesters and discourage President Viktor Yanukovich from taking tougher measures against them. One vocal star of the US political stage, Senator John McCain, enjoyed an evening with opposition leaders and tweeted photos of the crowds in the square. He went on to address the protesters the next day.
View image on Twitter
Incredible display of patriotism at the Maidan tonight

Nuland herself is probably most remembered now for handing out cookies to riot police officers and demonstrators, while on a November 2013 Maidan tour accompanied by Ambassador Geoffrey Pyatt.

Behind the scene, the duo were engaged in power brokering. In January, it was Pyatt who made radical protesters withdraw from the Ministry of Justice building, which they had previously seized by force. Ukraine’s Interior Ministry, then still loyal to Yanukovich, officially thanked the ambassador.
Later in February, a leaked phone conversation, notable for Nuland’s unprintable expletive at her frustration with the EU, revealed the pair discussing who should lead the new Ukrainian government (Arseny Yatsenyuk, incidentally, the current PM) and who should not be in it (Vitaly Klitchko, currently mayor of Kiev).

Rule by foreigners?

The US government’s support for the post-coup government in Kiev never dwindled even as it went on to encroach on media freedom and the free speech and launched a military crackdown on its dissenting eastern regions. At times, critics say, it was difficult to distinguish the new Ukraine from an entity directly ruled from Washington.
One ironic episode occurred in December, when the Ukrainian Security Service building flew a US flag alongside a Ukrainian one over its entrance. Photos of the flags were quickly dismissed as a propaganda fake by Ukrainian bloggers, but the SBU later confirmed that it ran up the stars and stripes to honor visiting US Under Secretary Rose Gottemoeller, who is in charge of arms deals with the State Department.
The debate over the flag was partially fuelled by rumors in Ukraine that the SBU allocated an entire level in its HQ to US consultants, including active CIA agents.

The rumors may be insulting to Kiev’s sovereignty, but there could be some substance behind it. Ukraine didn’t hesitate to appoint several foreigners as ministers, hastily giving them Ukrainian citizenship necessary for the jobs. Among them is Finance Minister Natalie Jaresko, a former section chief at the US embassy and chair of an investment fund, which distributed US Congress money provided thorough the US Agency for International Development (USAID).

Biden’s chairmanship

A similar episode transpired in April, when US Vice-President Joe Biden arrived in Kiev on a state visit. The top American official came just after then-acting President Aleksandr Turchinov had declared the military campaign against the rebel forces in Donetsk and Lugansk regions was active. This later escalated into a full-fledged civil war.
A humorous moment came in Biden’s trip when he chaired a session with Ukrainian officials, taking the seat normally reserved for the president of Ukraine. Ironically, Dozhd TV, a leading Russian opposition TV channel, erroneously called Biden the acting president of Ukraine and misquoted him as demanding that Russia “stopped meddling into US internal affairs.”

For Biden, Ukraine’s economic future is a matter of concern not only due to his office but also due to his family’s ties with the Ukrainian energy sector. In May, Ukraine’s largest private gas company, Burisma Holdings, announced the appointment of VP Biden’s son, Hunter, to its board of directors. The White House insisted the appointment posed no conflict of interest for America’s second-ranking public official.
These and other examples of US “power brokering” raise some doubt about Washington’s claimed distance from the regime change in Ukraine. After all, the US has a long record of meddling in other countries’ affairs, ousting governments Washington didn’t like and imposing those it did. Why would Ukraine be any different, skeptics ask?

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