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Old 23-06-13, 19:39   #1
 
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Important Kids Stop Squabbling- US Finally Approves $61BIL Military Aid For Ukraine




US Politicians issues Warning to Russia as Edward Snowden arrives in Moscow


Senator warns Vladimir Putin of 'serious consequences' if country neglects to send NSA whistleblower back to US

Dominic Rushe in New York, guardian.co.uk, Sunday 23 June 2013




US senator Chuck Schumer said of Russia: 'That's not how allies should treat each other.'
Photograph: Butsenko Anton/Corbis


US politicians attacked Vladimir Putin on Sunday and called for Russia to hand over Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor who admitted leaking top secret spying documents.

As Snowden landed in Moscow after leaving Hong Kong, where the US had requested his arrest, leading Democratic senator Chuck Schumer accused the Russian president of sticking a finger in the eye of the US.

"The bottom line is very simple: allies are supposed to treat each other in decent ways and Putin always seems almost eager to put a finger in the eye of the United States, whether it is Syria, Iran and now of course with Snowden," Schumer said on CNN's State of the Union.

"That's not how allies should treat each other and I think it will have serious consequences for the United States-Russia relationship."

Mike Rogers, chairman of the House permanent select committee on intelligence, told NBC's Meet The Press that he did not have information that Putin had prior knowledge of Snowden's flight plans but "it wouldn't surprise me".

"Putin has been planting a thorn in the world's side in Syria. We think they may not be playing honest with respect to the nuclear treaty. They are very aggressive around the world," he said. "I'm sure they would love to have a little bit of coffee and some conversation with Mr Snowden."

He added that the US should use "every legal avenue" to bring Snowden back to the US. "We will continue with extradition activities wherever he turns up."

Rogers said the leaks had damaged national security and "bad guys overseas have changed the way they operate" as a result of the leaks.

Republican senator Lindsey Graham told Fox News that Russia should "hold this fellow and send him back here for justice".

"I don't think he's a hero, I believe he hurt our nation. He compromised the national security program designed to find out what terrorists were up to," he said.

However, amid the backlash against Russia, politicians and others also rounded on the Obama administration. Graham questioned why Snowden was allowed to leave Hong Kong in the first place. "I'd like to find out why our papers were not in compliance. That would be a big mistake by the Department of Justice," he said.

Republican senator Rand Paul attacked national intelligence director James Clapper, who earlier this month admitted to giving the "least untruthful" answer to Congress when asked about the extent of US surveillance of American citizens.

Paul told CNN: "I think it is still going to be an open question with history about how this young man is judged. I do think when history looks at this they are going to contrast the behaviour of James Clapper, our national intelligence director, with Edward Snowden. Mr Clapper lied in Congress in defiance of the law in the name of security. Mr Snowden told the truth in the name of privacy." He said both had broken the law.

On Saturday House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi was booed by a crowd during a speech at activist meeting Netroots Nation when she said Snowden had broken the law.

Pelosi was heckled as she spoke about the need to balance privacy and security. One man yelled: "It's not a balance, it makes us less safe." Another shouted: "You suck!"

More.......
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Old 17-02-15, 18:25   #2
 
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Update re: VIDEO-Russia Exposes NSA Secret Prog>Lets US Spy on All Home PCs in World

Russian Researchers Expose 'NSA's Secret Weapon': Outrage at Program That Enables America to Spy on EVERY Home Computer in the World is Uncovered

  • The NSA has figured out how to hide spying and sabotage software deep within hard drives, according to cyber researchers and former operatives
  • The group said it found personal computers in 30 countries infected with one or more of the spying programs
  • The most infections were seen in Iran, followed by Russia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, China, Mali, Syria, Yemen and Algeria
  • The infections started in 2001, but increased drastically in 2008, the year President Barack Obama was elected
  • The tools are designed to run on computers even when they are not connected to the Internet, and even the makers of some of the hard drives are unaware that these programs have been embedded
  • The spies made a technological breakthrough by figuring out how to lodge malicious software in the obscure code called firmware that launches every time a computer is turned on
Daily Mail UK, 17 Feb 2015


The National Security Agency has figured out how to hide spying software deep within hard drives, allowing them to monitor and eavesdrop on the majority of the world's computers - even when they are not connected to the internet.


The Moscow-based security software maker Kaspersky Lab said it has found personal computers in 30 countries infected with one or more of the spying programs, with the most infections seen in Iran, followed by Russia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, China, Mali, Syria, Yemen and Algeria.
The targets included government and military institutions, telecommunication companies, banks, energy companies, nuclear researchers, media, and Islamic activists.

Scroll Down for Video







Kaspersky said it found personal computers in 30 countries infected with one or more of the spying programs





The NSA has figured out how to hide spying software deep within hard drives , giving the agency the means to eavesdrop on the majority of the world's computers, according to Kaspersky (file photo)


The NSA began infecting computers in 2001 claims Kaspersky, ramping up their efforts in 2008 when President Barack Obama was elected.
This 'surpasses anything known in terms of complexity and sophistication of techniques, and that has been active for almost two decades,' said Kaspersky.
What's more, even the makers of these hard drives are unaware that these spying programs have been installed, with the NSA obtaining their source codes by going so far as to pose as software developers according to former intelligence operatives, or telling the companies the government must do a security audit to make sure their source code is safe.

According to Kaspersky, the spies made a technological breakthrough by figuring out how to lodge malicious software in the obscure code called firmware that launches every time a computer is turned on.
Disk drive firmware is viewed by spies and cybersecurity experts as the second-most valuable real estate on a PC for a hacker, second only to the BIOS code invoked automatically as a computer boots up.

The hardware will be able to infect the computer over and over,' lead Kaspersky researcher Costin Raiu said in an interview.
Though the leaders of the still-active espionage campaign could have taken control of thousands of PCs, giving them the ability to steal files or eavesdrop on anything they wanted, the spies were selective and only established full remote control over machines belonging to the most desirable foreign targets, according to Raiu. He said Kaspersky found only a few especially high-value computers with the hard-drive infections.

The firm declined to publicly name the country behind the spying campaign, but said it was closely linked to Stuxnet, the NSA-led cyberweapon that was used to attack Iran's uranium enrichment facility. The NSA is the U.S. agency responsible for gathering electronic intelligence.

A former NSA employee told Reuters that Kaspersky's analysis was correct, and that people still in the spy agency valued these espionage programs as highly as Stuxnet. Another former intelligence operative confirmed that the NSA had developed the prized technique of concealing spyware in hard drives, but said he did not know which spy efforts relied on it.

NSA spokeswoman Vanee Vines said the agency was aware of the Kaspersky report but would not comment on it publicly.
Kaspersky published the technical details of its research on Monday, a move that could help infected institutions detect the spying programs, some of which trace back as far as 2001.





Eugene Kaspersky (file photo) published the details of his research on Friday



The disclosure could hurt the NSA's surveillance abilities, already damaged by massive leaks by former contractor Edward Snowden. Snowden's revelations have upset some U.S. allies and slowed the sales of U.S. technology products abroad.

The exposure of these new spying tools could lead to greater backlash against Western technology, particularly in countries such as China, which is already drafting regulations that would require most bank technology suppliers to proffer copies of their software code for inspection.

Peter Swire, one of five members of U.S. President Barack Obama's Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technology, said the Kaspersky report showed that it is essential for the country to consider the possible impact on trade and diplomatic relations before deciding to use its knowledge of software flaws for intelligence gathering.

'There can be serious negative effects on other U.S. interests,' Swire said.

Technological Breakthrough


Kaspersky's reconstructions of the spying programs show that they could work in disk drives sold by more than a dozen companies, comprising essentially the entire market. They include Western Digital Corp, Seagate Technology Plc, Toshiba Corp, IBM, Micron Technology Inc and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd.
Western Digital, Seagate and Micron said they had no knowledge of these spying programs. Toshiba and Samsung declined to comment. IBM did not respond to requests for comment.

Getting the Source Code


Raiu said the authors of the spying programs must have had access to the proprietary source code that directs the actions of the hard drives. That code can serve as a roadmap to vulnerabilities, allowing those who study it to launch attacks much more easily.

'There is zero chance that someone could rewrite the [hard drive] operating system using public information,' Raiu said.

Concerns about access to source code flared after a series of high-profile cyberattacks on Google Inc and other U.S. companies in 2009 that were blamed on China. Investigators have said they found evidence that the hackers gained access to source code from several big U.S. tech and defense companies.

It is not clear how the NSA may have obtained the hard drives' source code. Western Digital spokesman Steve Shattuck said the company 'has not provided its source code to government agencies.' The other hard drive makers would not say if they had shared their source code with the NSA.

Seagate spokesman Clive Over said it has 'secure measures to prevent tampering or reverse engineering of its firmware and other technologies.' Micron spokesman Daniel Francisco said the company took the security of its products seriously and 'we are not aware of any instances of foreign code.'


Kaspersky Uncovers Online Spy Tools with Apparent Links to NSA








According to former intelligence operatives, the NSA has multiple ways of obtaining source code from tech companies,including asking directly and posing as a software developer



If a company wants to sell products to the Pentagon or another sensitive U.S. agency, the government can request a security audit to make sure the source code is safe.

'They don't admit it, but they do say, "We're going to do an evaluation, we need the source code,"' said Vincent Liu, a partner at security consulting firm Bishop Fox and former NSA analyst. 'It's usually the NSA doing the evaluation, and it's a pretty small leap to say they're going to keep that source code.'



The NSA declined to comment on any allegations in the Kaspersky report. Vines said the agency complies with the law and White House directives to protect the United States and its allies 'from a wide array of serious threats.'

Kaspersky called the authors of the spying program 'the Equation group,' named after their embrace of complex encryption formulas.
The group used a variety of means to spread other spying programs, such as by compromising jihadist websites, infecting USB sticks and CDs, and developing a self-spreading computer worm called Fanny, Kaspersky said.
Fanny was like Stuxnet in that it exploited two of the same undisclosed software flaws, known as 'zero days,' which strongly suggested collaboration by the authors, Raiu said. He added that it was 'quite possible' that the Equation group used Fanny to scout out targets for Stuxnet in Iran and spread the virus.


FULL Video on How The NSA Spies/Operates...

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Old 03-03-15, 21:39   #3
 
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Hacker re: VIDEOs-Snowden: 'I am Not a Spy' + Russia Visa Extended for 3 Yrs

Edward Snowden May Finally Stand Trial
-as Russian Lawyer for the NSA Leaker Reveals They are Working With the United States on His Return Home


  • Edward Snowden may finally return home to the United States it was revealed on Tuesday
  • Snowden's Russian lawyer Anatoly Kucherena said they were working out a way to solve the issue of his extradition with the United States
  • Snowden has been charged with theft of government property and two counts of violating the 1917 Espionage Act for leaking classified documents
  • This comes one week after the documentary about Snowden leaking this information, Citizenfour, won the Oscar for Best Documentary
  • Snowden has said that he will return home if he is given a fair trial by the United States government
  • He recently said his biggest regret through this all is that he did not come forward with these leaks sooner
Daily Mail UK, 3 March 2015


Edward Snowden may finally be going home.

A Russian lawyer for Snowden said on Tuesday the fugitive former U.S. spy agency contractor who leaked details of the government's mass surveillance programs was working with American and German lawyers to return home.
His biggest demand it seems is that he be given a fair trial when charged for his offenses.

Scroll Down for Video






Edward Snowden (above) may finally return home to the United States it was revealed on Tuesday






Snowden's Russian lawyer Anatoly Kucherena (above) said they were working out a way to solve the issue of his extradition with the United States


'I won't keep it secret that he... wants to return back home. And we are doing everything possible now to solve this issue,' said his lawyer Anatoly Kucherena while speaking at a news conference about a book he had written on Snowden.
'There is a group of U.S. lawyers, there is also a group of German lawyers and I'm dealing with it on the Russian side.'


Lawyer reveals Edward Snowden is considering US return
;





Moscow granted Snowden asylum in 2013, and he has been given a three-year residence permit in Russia.
This at a time when relations between the two countries are already strained.

The United States wants Snowden to stand trial for leaking extensive secrets of electronic surveillance programs by the National Security Agency, but Russia has repeatedly refused to extradite him.
He has been charged with theft of government property and two counts of violating the 1917 Espionage Act.

And while the government is eager to have Snowden see his day in court, public support for the 31-year-old may be at an all time high.





The documentary about Snowden, Citizenfour, won the Oscar last week, with director Laura Poitras (left), journalist Glenn Greenwald (center), and Snowden's girlfriend Lindsay Mills (right) accepting the award


Just last week the documentary Citzenfour, which examined the leaking of these classified documents by Snowden to journalist Glenn Greenwald, and his quest for asylum in the aftermath, took home the Oscar for Best Documentary at the Academy Awards.

Snowden's girlfriend, Lindsay Mills, was there to accept the award alongside Greenwald and the film's director, Laura Poitras.

He was also interviewed by New York Times media columnist David Carr in the esteemed journalist's last ever public appearance.

In a recent Reddit AMA, Snowden said that through this all his biggest regret is that he did not come forward with these leaks sooner, believing that if he had he might have limited some of the government's abuse of their powers.

Lawyer Reveals Edward Snowden is Considering US Return



All You Need to Know about Edward Snowden and the Leaks


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Old 14-06-15, 20:56   #4
 
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Update re: VIDEOs-Snowden: 'I am Not a Spy' + Russia Visa Extended for 3 Yrs

'Edward Snowden Has Blood on His Hands':
MI6 is Forced to Pull Spies Out of Hostile Countries after Russia and China Decode a MILLION Encrypted Files Leaked by the Whistleblower


  • Classified files could lead to identification of British and American spies
  • Spy chiefs in Russia and China have cracked one million top-secret files
  • Home Office official has accused Snowden of having 'blood on his hands'
  • Security services have 'had difficulties tracking terrorists' since the leaks
AP 14 June 2015


MI6 has pulled its spies out of 'hostile countries' and America's intelligence agencies are on high alert after Russia and China cracked encrypted files leaked by fugitive whistleblower Edward Snowden.


The top-secret documents contain information that could lead to the identification of British and American spies, according to senior officials in Downing Street, the Home Office and the security services.


A senior Home Office official accused Snowden - the former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor responsible for the biggest confidential information leak in US history - of having 'blood on his hands' after they gained access to over one million files.





Leaked: MI6 has pulled its spies out of 'hostile countries' after Russia and China cracked encrypted files leaked by whistleblower Edward Snowden (pictured) which could identify its agents






Aides in British Prime Minister David Cameron's office have confirmed the top-secret material is now in the hands of spy chiefs in Moscow (President Vladimir Putin, left) and Beijing (President Xi Jinping, right)



Security services have reported increasing difficulties in tracking terrorists and dangerous criminals via email, chat rooms and social media since he exposed Western intelligence-gathering methods, the Sunday Times reports.

Now aides in British Prime Minister David Cameron's office have confirmed the top-secret material is now in the hands of spy chiefs in Moscow and Beijing.
A senior Downing Street source told the Sunday Times: 'It is the case that Russians and Chinese have information.
'It has meant agents have had to be moved and that knowledge of how we operate has stopped us getting vital information.'

A British intelligence source added: 'Snowden has done incalculable damage. In some cases the agencies have been forced to intervene and lift their agents from operations to prevent them from being identified and killed.


John Oliver grills Ed Snowden over leaked NSA documents:








Snowden said he was protecting 'privacy and basic liberties' by leaking over one million confidential files and claimed America's NSA and British-based GCHQ (pictured) were spying on innocent people






A senior Home Office official accused Snowden, a former contractor at the National Security Agency (NSA), of having 'blood on his hands' after Russia and China gained access to over one million files





Security services have reported increasing difficulties in tracking since Snowden (pictured) exposed Western intelligence-gathering methods



'We know Russia and China have access to Snowden's material and will be going through it for years to come, searching for clues to identify potential targets.'
Former GCHQ director Sir David Omand believes the leak represents a 'huge strategic setback' which is 'harming to Britain, America and their NATO allies'.


Quote:
'Snowden has done incalculable damage. In some cases the agencies have been forced to intervene and lift their agents from operations to prevent them from being identified and killed'
British Intelligence Source
He said the leak could spark a 'global intelligence arms race', adding: 'I have no doubt whatever that programmes are being launched and money is being spent to try and catch up.
'That's probably true not just of China and Russia but a number of other nations who have seen some of this material to be published.
'I am not at all surprised that people are being pulled back and operations where people are exposed are having to be shut down, at least for the moment.'

An official at British Prime Minister David Cameron's office has played down the threat posed to agents by saying there is 'no evidence of anyone being harmed'.

Snowden fled the United States for Moscow in 2013 after he released 1.7 million secret documents from Western intelligence agencies to the media - and has remained under the protection of President Vladimir Putin's regime ever since.
Snowden said he was protecting 'privacy and basic liberties' and claimed America's NSA and British-based GCHQ were carrying out massive surveillance programmes which target millions of innocent people.


Anonymous artists erect Snowden statue in New York park;








Edward Snowden is hailed as a hero by some but a British intelligence source has accused him of doing 'incalculable damage'





David Miranda (left) the boyfriend of the Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald, was seized at Heathrow in 2013 in possession of 58,000 'highly classified' intelligence documents after visiting Snowden in Moscow


Another intelligence source in the United States said the damage done by Snowden was 'far greater than what has been admitted'.
It is unclear whether Snowden voluntarily handed over the secret documents to remain in Hong Kong and Moscow, or whether the countries stole his data.

But a senior UK Home Office source said:

'Why do you think Snowden ended up in Russia?
'Putin didn’t give him asylum for nothing. His documents were encrypted but they weren’t completely secure and we have now seen our agents and assets being targeted.'



David Miranda, the boyfriend of the Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald, was seized at Heathrow in 2013 in possession of 58,000 'highly classified' intelligence documents after visiting Snowden in Moscow.

During the ensuing court hearing Oliver Robbins, then deputy national security adviser in the Cabinet Office, said that the release of the information 'would do serious damage to UK national security, and ultimately put lives at risk'.

Eventually the High Court ruled there was 'compelling evidence' that stopping Miranda was 'imperative in the interests of national security' and publishing the documents would endanger lives.
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Old 30-08-15, 06:42   #5
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Default Re: Whistleblower Snowden Makes New Documentary

does anyone think he's an idiot for doing what he did? i think the public needed to know that. but than i dunno ya know? why are they even watching us anyways? i'm not a guy who talks conspiracy at all. but it's a touchy subject i think
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Old 06-10-15, 16:33   #6
 
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Breaking News VIDEOs-Snowden:UK/US Spy on Smartphones/Data Privacy Ruling

RELATED:

Student Wins Landmark Legal Battle to Stop Facebook Handing over Data to US Spies in Ruling Which Could Affect Tech Giants Google, Skype and Apple


  • European Court of Justice dealt blow to Facebook in privacy ruling
  • Decided that company must be investigated over alleged abuse
  • Facebook's Irish subsidiary funnels data to U.S., where spies can see it
  • Activity was protected by 'Safe Harbour' deal, but court declared it invalid
Daily Mail UK, 6 October 2015


An agreement that allows U.S. spies to harvest vast amounts of personal information from FBook has been ruled invalid by Europe's top court.


The 'safe harbour' treaty, under which Facebook supplies massive amounts of personal data to U.S. intelligence agencies, has been ruled inadequate because it infringes the privacy of users.
Judges have now ordered an inquiry into the agreement which they warn could end the transfer of data by Facebook and other tech giants including Google, Yahoo!, Skype and Apple.





Giving Facebook the finger: Law student Max Schrems, 28, has dealt a blow to Facebook after his legal case knocked holes in a treaty it uses to send its data to the U.S., where spy agencies can get it




Ruling: Mr Schrems won the legal victory, which will result in a probe into Facebook by the Irish data watchdog, which has previously refused to intervene


The case, which has dealt a severe blow to Facebook and the U.S., was brought by Austrian law student Max Schrems, 28, who was concerned about the practice that was revealed by whistle-blower Edward Snowden.
Mr Schrems crowdfunded more than €66,300 for his campaign after making an appeal through his website. After the ruling was made Tuesday morning he sent a message saying 'YAY' to his 5,000 Twitter followers.

He later posted a statement online hailing the ruling. He said: 'This judgement draws a clear line. It clarifies that mass surveillance violates our fundamental rights'.
He added that his victory 'highlights that governments and businesses cannot simply ignore our fundamental right to privacy, but must abide by the law and enforce it'.





Bated breath: Mr Schrems is pictured in the mostly-empty Luzembourg courtroom ahead of the verdict






Decision: European judges are pictured taking their seats ahead of trashing the U.S.-E.U. Safe Harbour treaty





Long campaign: Mr Schrems has been battling Facebook since 2010, after deciding the company did not take European law seriously enough



Quote:
THE SWEETHEART DEAL THAT PROTECTED TECH GIANTS FROM SCRUTINY

The 'Safe Harbour' treaty today deemed invalid by top judges was a deal struck 15 years ago to allow U.S. companies easier access to European data.



Within the E.U. strict laws apply to anyone collecting personal data - and anyone they hand it on to has to be equally trustworthy.
The 2000 Safe Harbour agreement allows American companies to sign up with the U.S. Department of Commerce as a safe pair of hands, a standard for which they can certify themselves.
This allows them unfettered access to E.U. data, based on the premise that U.S. data laws are similarly robust.

However, the mass surveillance programmes revealed by Edward Snowden raised concerns about how the U.S. treats private information - and led to today's challenge which ended in the blanket waiver being declared invalid.
He brought the case against Facebook in Ireland because all the company's operations outside the U.S. and Canada are run from Dublin.
The Safe Harbour agreement was struck in 2000 between the U.S. and E.U. to allow data sharing and cut red tape.


But the European Court of Justice has now ruled that America's protections are too weak to offer proper protection to European users.
Judges sitting in Luxembourg said U.S. authorities will always put their national security first, meaning that they cannot be trusted to protect the privacy of E.U. users.





Happy days: Mr Schrems tweeted 'YAY' in celebration after the ruling. He is pictured leaving court with his lawyer Herwig Hofmann



They made their decision in the wake of former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden revealing a slew of mass surveillance operations run by his former employer.





Ruling: The blow to Facebook was dealt by the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg, pictured above



They include the Prism programme, which gives the NSA routine access to data troves stored by American tech giants like Google, Yahoo!, Skype, Apple and Facebook.

The ECJ ruling said: 'The court declares the Safe Harbour decision invalid.
'The United States Safe Harbour scheme thus enables interference, by United States public authorities, with the fundamental rights of persons, and the (Data Protection) Commission decision does not refer either to the existence, in the United States, of rules intended to limit any such interference or to the existence of effective legal protection against the interference.'
'This judgment has the consequence that the Irish supervisory authority is required to examine Mr Schrems' complaint with all due diligence and, at the conclusion of its investigation, is to decide whether, pursuant to the directive, transfer of the data of Facebook's European subscribers to the United States should be suspended on the ground that that country does not afford an adequate level of protection of personal data.'
The ruling came before the court because of a challenge by an Austrian law student concerned over mass surveillance.



Quote:
LAW STUDENT AND PRIVACY CHAMPION WHO TOOK ON FACEBOOK

The challenge to Facebook's treatment of users' data was launched by an Austrian law student.
Max Schrems, 28, a PhD student at the University of Vienna, crowdfunded his campaign to hold Facebook's feet to the fire over its cooperation with U.S. spies.
So far his website has raised more than €66,300 for the campaign against Facebook, which escalated into a battle with Irish data chiefs played out in Europe's highest court.

Mr Schrems describes himself simply as 'a Facebook user' who is concerned about who can see his own data.
He has been battling Facebook for at least three years after being shocked by what he saw as a cavalier disregard for E.U. rules by one of Facebook's top lawyers.

He first used E.U. laws to demand all the company's data on him, which amounted to more than 1,200 pages. Senior executives from Facebook have met with him in Vienna in an attempt to calm his campaign against them.

In 2013 he filed a complaint against Facebook with Ireland's Data Protection Commissioner, demanding that it probe the tech giant to see what data it makes available to U.S. spies.
His case was slapped down for being 'frivolous', and told Facebook's activities were covered under the 'Safe Harbour' provisions which have now been declared invalid.

Schrems then turned to the European Court of Justice, which in its latest ruling decided that Safe Harbour was not a proper excuse, and that the Irish watchdog must conduct its own investigation.


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Old 07-10-15, 00:37   #7
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i say good for this kid to win this thing. even though i refuse to sign up to that i'd post what i call it but it would just bleep me. in short i don't believe in social media to put nicely lol. anyways, having said that i think it's just plain wrong that they do this to people. yes it's a public forum and it's understandable that you can't post certain things on there. though other things do fly under the radar for some reason or other i'm sure. and i believe they are doing this to everyone weather you are using that or not.

it would surprise me at all if they want everyone's data in fact i think google does sell it which is why i refuse to use google. but maybe this kid will help put a stop to that?
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Old 12-02-17, 21:27   #8
 
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Update re: VIDEOs-Snowden: 'I am Not a Spy' + Russia Visa Extended for 3 Yrs

Snowden Claims Report Russia May 'Gift' Him to Trump Proves He is Not a Spy

The whistleblower took to Twitter to say that the NBC report vindicates him of spying charges because ‘no country trades away spies’


The Guardian UK, 12 February 2017


Whistleblower Edward Snowden has seized on a report that Russia is considering sending him back to the US as a “gift” to Donald Trump, saying that the story vindicates him of charges that he is a spy.

“Finally: irrefutable evidence that I never cooperated with Russian intel,” he said on Twitter. “No country trades away spies, as the rest would fear they’re next.”


Edward Snowden's leave to remain in Russia has been extended for three years. Snowden’s Russian lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena, told RIA Novosti news agency that the permit had been extended until 2020. He also said that as of next year, Snowden would have the right to apply for Russian citizenship.


Snowden was responding to a report by NBC which stated that US intelligence had collected information that Russia wanted to hand Snowden over in order to “curry favor” with Trump, who has said that the former NSA contractor is a “traitor” and a “spy” who deserves to be executed.

The report – based on two sources in the intelligence community – said the intelligence had been gathered since Trump’s inauguration. The Guardian was unable to independently verify the report.

Snowden’s ACLU lawyer, Ben Wizner, did not immediately respond to requests for comment. However, he told NBC News he was unaware of any plan to return his client to the US.

“Team Snowden has received no such signals and has no new reason for concern,” Wizner said.


Russia granted Snowden asylum in 2013 and a three-year residency in 2014. Snowden has been living in exile in Moscow, facing charges in the US including violations of the US Espionage Act for leaking documents about secret mass surveillance programs.

Speaking at a GOP candidate debate in March 2016, Trump said of Snowden:

“I said he was a spy and we should get him back. And if Russia respected our country, they would have sent him back immediately, but he was a spy. It didn’t take me a long time to figure that one out.”


The Kremlin publicly dismissed these claims.

Snowden offered a longer explanation of his feelings of vindication when he was interviewed by Katie Couric in December 2016, when rumours of a Russian handover first started circulating.

He described the suggestion as vindication that he was“independent”. He added: “The fact that I’ve always worked on behalf of the United States and the fact that Russia doesn’t own me. In fact the Russian government may see me as a sort of liability.”

Snowden suggested that a reason why Russia might want to return him was his recent criticism of the Kremlin’s human rights record and his suggestions that its officials had hacked US security networks.

Previously Snowden has said that Moscow had “gone very far, in ways that are completely unnecessary, costly and corrosive to individual and collective rights” in monitoring citizens online.

When Couric asked if Snowden would mind being extradited, he replied: “That would obviously be something that would be a threat to my liberty and to my life.

“But what I’m saying here is you can’t have it both ways. You can’t say this guy’s a bad guy – a Russian tool or something like that – at the same time you say he’s going to be traded away.”

After reiterating his sense of vindication on Friday, Snowden posted again to Twitter: “Speak not because it is safe, but because it is right.”

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Old 19-02-17, 03:28   #9
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Default Re: VIDEOs-Snowden: 'I am Not a Spy' + Russia Visa Extended for 3 Yrs

what bothers me more than this is Polanski wanted to come back to the states and have a judge throw his warrant away i think is what i read? i don't remember what i read to be honest but i do remember seeing that he wants a judge to let him. that upsets me as he's a pedophile who got away with it for 40 years so far.

and Snowden proving he's not a spy which is something i never thought he was. i dunno what he all released but i think some of it at least is stuff the public did need to know. i dunno about all of it to be fair. but some it at least
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Old 13-04-23, 18:47   #10
 
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Movies re: Putin Preparing to Attack UK -Russian Spy Ships Mapping Wind Farms & Key Cables

Jack Teixeira: Suspect in Pentagon Documents Leak Named

Leader of online group behind suspected US military document leaks named

BBC 13 APR 2023






Jack Teixeira: Suspect in Pentagon Documents Leak


The New York Times earlier reported that the leader of an online gaming chat group where the files leaked in recent months had the same name.

The paper said he is a 21-year-old member of the intelligence wing of the Massachusetts Air National Guard.

Its report did not identify Mr Teixeira as the alleged leaker.

The New York Times cited interviews with other members of the online group, one of whom said he had known the person who leaked the files for at least three years.



At least 50 but perhaps more than 100 secret documents were posted on Discord - a social media platform popular with gamers.

The documents contain a range of intelligence assessments about the war in Ukraine, but also sensitive intelligence about countries around the world, including US allies.





Ammuniton fired by Ukrainian troops


The leaked documents have included details of Ukraine's planned offensive against Russian forces

On Wednesday, the Washington Post published an interview with one of the members of the chat room where the documents initially appeared.

He described the leaker as a young, charismatic gun enthusiast in his early to mid-20s who works at an unnamed military base.

The Post reported that the man was the leader of a Discord chat room including roughly two dozen members who swapped "memes, offensive jokes and idle chitchat" and prayed and watched movies together.

The members included people from Russia and Ukraine and a number of other countries in Europe, Asia and South America, the paper reported.

At first the leaks were kept inside the small chat room, but in early March members began posting them on other Discord servers, including ones dedicated to the game Minecraft and a Filipino YouTuber.

From there they were posted on the fringe message board 4chan and on the Telegram chat app, particularly on pro-Russia channels. In some cases they were altered to increase Ukrainian casualty counts.

Earlier, while on a trip to Ireland, US President Joe Biden said investigators were close to finding the person who leaked the documents.

"There's a full blown investigation going on, as you know, with the intelligence community and the Justice Department, and they're getting close," Mr Biden told reporters.

The FBI has now arrested Mr Teixeira



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Old 13-04-23, 21:46   #11
 
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Movies re: Putin Preparing to Attack UK -Russian Spy Ships Mapping Wind Farms & Key Cables

Watch The Arrest of The Suspected Document Leaker








FBI Arrests National Guard Airman Jack Teixeira


The FBI has arrested a suspect in Massachusetts as part
of their investigation into leaked US military documents.


The FBI arrested Jack Teixeira in connection with the leaking of classified documents that have been posted online. Teixeira, 21, is a member of the Massachusetts Air National Guard. His arrest comes following a fast-moving search by the US government for the identity of the leaker who posted classified documents to a social media platform popular with video gamers.

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Old 16-04-23, 01:55   #12
 
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Jack Teixeira: US Airman Charged Over Pentagon Documents Leak

The US airman accused of leaking confidential intelligence and defence documents has been officially charged in a court appearance in Boston.


BBC News 16 APR 2023
















Jack Teixeira, 21, wore shackles and a prison uniform as he stood before a federal judge on Friday.

After a shout of "love you, Jack" from a person in the courtroom, the defendant replied "you too, dad".

Mr Teixeira faces up to 15 years in prison over charges of unauthorised transmission of defence information.

He is also charged with the unauthorised removal and retention of classified documents.



The airman faces up to 10 years in prison for the first charge, and up to five years in prison for the second.

The dozens of leaked documents had revealed US assessments of the war in Ukraine as well as sensitive secrets about American allies.

The leaks embarrassed Washington and raised fresh questions over the security of classified information.

Mr Teixeira was arrested by armed FBI agents at his family home in Massachusetts on Thursday.

The judge ruled that the suspect qualifies for a public defender - a lawyer employed at public expense in a criminal trial for people who cannot afford legal fees.

Mr Teixeira remains in custody.

US President Joe Biden thanked law enforcement in a statement for their "rapid action" to investigate the source of the leaks. He said he has directed US military and intelligence to secure and limit distribution of any more sensitive information.


'Top Secret Clearance'


The leaked intelligence material first appeared in a Discord chat room on which Mr Teixeira is said to have been an administrator. Its members would often discuss geopolitical affairs and wars.

The affidavit provided by FBI Special Agent Patrick Lueckenhoff to the court stated that the suspect began posting the leaked documents some time in December.

The initial leaks were in the form of paragraphs of text, according to the affidavit, but Mr Teixeira then moved on to posting photographs of documents in January.

It was not until intelligence material was posted outside the chat room group that Pentagon officials became aware of the leak, prompting a search for the culprit.

Mr Teixeira worked as an IT specialist in the intelligence wing of the Massachusetts National Guard, based at Otis Air National Guard Base in western Cape Cod.

The National Guard is a reservist wing of the US Air Force. They are not employed full-time in the military, but can be deployed when necessary.



Mr Teixeira's official title was cyber defence operations journeyman, according to the criminal complaint filed in the Boston court. He held the rank of Airman 1st Class - a relatively junior position.

The affidavit stated that Mr Teixeira held a "top secret" security clearance since 2021, and that he would have "signed a lifetime binding non-disclosure agreement" to take on his role.

Mr Luekenoff added the suspect "would have had to acknowledge that the unauthorized disclosure of protected information could result in criminal charges".

The affidavit also alleged that Mr Teixeira used his government computer to search classified intelligence reporting for the word "leak" on 6 April - the day when public reporting about the documents first emerged.

Prosecutors alleged that Mr Teixeira searched the term to learn whether US intelligence had information on the identity of the person behind the leaks.


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Old 20-04-23, 15:10   #13
 
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Movies re: Putin Preparing to Attack UK -Russian Spy Ships Mapping Wind Farms & Key Cables

Russian Jet Tried to Shoot Down RAF Plane as Ukraine Continues to BLAST Russia

Ben Wallace Accused Russians of Act of WAR Against RAF Plane.

Russian Jet Tried to Blast RAF Plane Packed With 30 Brits Out of Sky, Leaked Docs Say

15ft from disaster: Russian jets 'recklessly' buzzed NATO aircraft, it emerges after Ben Wallace reveals Putin warplane fired a MISSILE near RAF patrol above the Black Sea


BBC News 20 APR 2023





A Russian Su-27 jet shadowing an RAF RC-135 spy plane over the Black Sea 'released a missile... in the vicinity' of the British plane, it has been revealed





Two Russian Su-27 fighter jets were following the British plane when one suffered a 'technical malfunction' and fired a missile, Ben Wallace said (file image). Defence Secretary also said one jet went within 15 feet of a Nato aircraft





An RAF RC-135 Rivet Joint spy plane had been flying over international waters near Crimea at the time of the incident last month


Two Russian Su-27 fighters 'interacted' with British spy plane over Black Sea
One jet went within 15 feet of Nato aircraft, Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said
Fighter fired a missile 'in the vicinity' of a British spy plane above Black Sea
Sergei Shoigu, Putin's defence minister, blamed 'malfunction' for the incident
Near-miss will do little to calm nerves that Ukraine war could spiral into WW3






Defence Secretary Ben Wallace has accused Russia of using its jets 'recklessly' after one of Putin's fighters went within 15 feet of a Nato aircraft.

Mr Wallace also revealed that a fighter jet accidentally fired a missile 'in the vicinity' of an RAF patrol above the Black Sea.


Detailing what happened between the Russian fighter and the UK plane, Mr Wallace said: 'I would also like to share with the House details of a recent incident which occurred in international airspace over the Black Sea.

'On September 29 an unarmed RAF RC-135 Rivet Joint, a civilian-style aircraft on routine patrol over the Black Sea was interacted with by two Russian armed Su-27 fighter aircraft.

'It is not unusual for aircraft to be shadowed and this day was no different.

'During that interaction however, it transpired that one of the Su-27 aircraft released a missile in the vicinity of the RAF Rivet Joint beyond visual range.

'The total time of the interaction between the Russian aircraft and the Rivet Joint was approximately 90 minutes.

'The patrol completed and the aircraft returned to base.'

Speaking to the Commons, he said Russia was using its fighters in a 'reckless' and 'unnecessary' way, which includes flying 'very, very' close to Nato aircraft.

'In one event I was aware of, a Russian fighter went within 15 feet of a Nato aircraft,' he said.

Mr Wallace said two Russian Su-27 fighters had 'interacted' with an RAF RC-135 Rivet Joint spy plane on patrol above international waters to the south of Crimea on September 29 when one of them 'released a missile'.
Sergei Shoigu, the Russian defence minister, blamed the incident on a technical malfunction and Britain does not believe it was a deliberate attempt to escalate, Mr Wallace added.


But it will do little to ease fears that the war in Ukraine could spiral into World War Three.
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Old 20-04-23, 15:20   #14
 
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Default re: Putin Preparing to Attack UK -Russian Spy Ships Mapping Wind Farms & Key Cables

Ukraine Continues to BLAST Russia...




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Old 22-04-23, 07:40   #15
 
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Movies re: Putin Nuke Bombers Skirt UK & Orders 160 Jets to Patrol Scotland-UK & Germany Respond

Putin is Preparing to Attack The UK -Russian Spy Ships are Mapping Wind Farms and Key Cables Off The British Coast.

For a long time it was only speculation. Now we know for certain. . There can be only one reason for this – to learn how to sabotage UK and European critical infrastructure in the event of a full-scale war with the West.


BBC News 22 APR 2023






Russian Spy Ships Mapping Wind Farms & Key Cables


For a long time it was only speculation. Now we know for certain

The sobering truth is that our potential adversaries, Russia in the West and China in the East, are gearing up for wider conflict.



That does not mean that conflict will happen –preparation makes it less likely – but we must urgently recognise the extent of the threat to the current order. Our world is becoming markedly more dangerous. And Britain is not ready.

Our collective response over too much of the past 15 years was one of denial, oiled and encouraged by Russian money and influence in the US, UK and EU.


War in Ukraine opened our eyes – just this week Cabinet Office Secretary Oliver Dowden gave an “unprecedented” warning of cyber threats to our national infrastructure; and Defence Secretary Ben Wallace has been consistently robust – but there is much more we can do.

Some of our closest allies, such as Poland, are re-arming on land at an unprecedented rate. Were the worst to happen, they will be ready to defend European soil.


But the Nato alliance remains dangerously exposed at sea.


Russia is probing for European vulnerabilities. Apart from food, the daily critical requirements of modern society are energy and communications. The underwater arteries of modern civilisation are surprisingly few. For example, just three pipelines deliver 43 per cent of our baseline gas supply. Five interconnectors deliver electricity to and from the UK and Europe (and one more between Britain and Ireland). There are more communications cables, about 70 in all, but a relatively small number of deep-sea sabotage operations could bring our world to a halt without a shot being fired. We were assured that wind farms would bolster our energy security, but few considered their military exposure.




For two decades, Putin has laid the groundwork for unconventional warfare. Current Russian military thinking sees conflict as combining military and non-military tools of state power – the “unification of everything” – into a seamless whole to serve the Kremlin’s aims. It is a form of total war, using everything from culture to cyber to conventional conflict.

It reflects the belief that, according to the head of Russia’s Armed Forces, the “very rules of war” have changed.
















US may need MORE nuclear bombs as China & Russia cooperate to create terrifying arsenal


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Old 27-04-23, 02:09   #16
 
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Movies Re: Putin Nuke Bombers Skirt UK & Orders 160 Jets to Patrol Scotland-UK & Germany Res

Two Russian Nuke Bombers Skirt UK as Putin Orders Tu 160 Jets to Patrol Sea Near Shetlands Scotland

RUSSIAN nuclear bombers have been spotted skirting the coast of Britain in a chilling show of force by Vladimir Putin.

Two Tu-160 planes were seen north of the Shetland Islands and were accompanied by a MiG-31 fighter during the 14 hour mission, which comes amid mounting tensions between Russia and the West.


BBC News 27 APR 2023




The planes flew a 14 hours mission that skirted the Shetland Islands






The bombers were accompanied by a MiG-31 fighter




Russian Su-27 fighter were intercepted by RAF and German jets





One of the Russian jets banking in front of the British and German planes shadowing it












An Il-20 spy plane was also involved in the tense encounter with the RAF

Kremlin jets recently brought down an American drone with both sides then putting on shows of strength by nuclear bombers.


The latest display of Kremlin military might comes as Russia’s former President Dmitry Medvedev warned humanity stands on the brink of World War Three.



It is the third time in a week the Russian tyrant has staged patrols of his nuclear strike aircraft and the second time in 12 days they have overflown the Norwegian Sea with Tu-160s.

Video shows the bombers – nicknamed the White Swans – being refuelled in flight during the mission, which comes after a similar display back in February.

“Two Tu-160 strategic missile carriers of the Russian Aerospace Forces have performed a scheduled flight in the airspace above neutral waters of the Barents and Norwegian seas, lasting over 14 hours," said the Russian defence ministry.

"All flights of Russian Aerospace Forces’ planes are carried out in strict compliance with international rules of airspace use.”


The Tu-160 – called the Blackjack by NATO - is a supersonic variable-sweep wing strategic missile-carrying bomber dating from the Soviet era.

Along with Tu-95MS bombers, the planes are the mainstay of Russia’s long-range aviation.








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Old 03-05-23, 13:56   #17
 
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Movies re: Zelensky Met With European Leaders to Ask For HELP as Russia Bombards Kyiv

Did Ukraine Really Try To Assassinate Putin With Kamikaze Drone OR is Russia Trying to Cover Up a SECOND Assassination Attempt of Putin?

Kremlin Accuses Ukraine of Trying to Assassinate Putin

Russia says it downed two drones that targeted the Kremlin in Moscow last night and accused Ukraine of attempting to kill President Vladimir Putin.


BBC News 3 MAY 2023








The Grand Kremlin palace, left, and the Cathedral of the Annunciation in Moscow, Russia.



Unverified footage on social media appeared to show an object flying over the Kremlin before a small explosion.

Ukraine said it had nothing to do with the drone strike.



Russia said the drones were disabled using electronic radar assets. Mr Putin's spokesman said he was not in the Kremlin at the time.

In a statement, the Kremlin said: "Last night, the Kyiv regime attempted to carry out a strike on the Kremlin residence of the President of the Russian Federation with unmanned aerial vehicles."

The Kremlin said the drones had targeted Mr Putin's residence in the complex

It said it regarded this "as a planned terrorist act and an assassination attempt on the president", and Russia "reserves the right to take retaliatory measures wherever and whenever is deemed necessary".

Mr Putin has very high personal protection and the BBC's Russia Editor Steve Rosenberg says it is astonishing to think that drones could have got anywhere near the Kremlin. He was unhurt and his schedule would continue as normal, the Kremlin said. He was working in Novo Ogaryovo outside Moscow on Wednesday.

Footage posted on Russian social media showed smoke over central Moscow in the early hours of Wednesday.

Fragments of the drones had fallen on the Kremlin site but no-one had been hurt and there was no damage to buildings, the Kremlin said.

The Kremlin also noted the incident had come shortly before Russia's 9 May Victory Day parade, which foreign dignitaries were expected to attend.

The parade would go ahead as planned, Russian news agencies quoted the Kremlin as saying.

Moscow's mayor on Wednesday announced a ban on unauthorised drone flights over the city.

Drone flights would require a special government permit, Sergei Sobyanin said.

Several Russian cities had already announced they would scale back this year's Victory Day celebrations.

Russian authorities have cited security reasons and attacks from pro-Ukrainian forces for the changes.






Explosions and fires have occurred in Russia in recent weeks.






Why Russia fears a "major breakthrough" by Ukraine, according to UK intel



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Old 17-05-23, 05:28   #18
 
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Movies re: Russia Poses Danger to UK & US Must End Prevarication Thats Prolonged The War

Zelensky Met With European Leaders to Ask For HELP

Britain to Send Ukraine Suicide Drones With Twice The Range of Himars
--Announcement that Kyiv will get hundreds of the kamikaze devices to strike back at Russia came as Volodymyr Zelensky met with Rishi Sunak

Ukraine’s Zelensky Arrived in Berlin and Was Received by Germanys’ Scholz
--Zelensky met with Germanys' Chancellor Olaf Scholz and thanked his government for its "fantastic solidarity" as he secured a big boost in military aid on his first visit to the country since Russia's invasion.

Ukraine War: Kyiv Not Attacking Russian Territory-Zelensky, as Russia Bombards Kyiv
--Russia has launched its' most intense rocket barrages on the Ukrainian capital since the war broke out.


BBC 17 MAY 2023




Russia bombards Kyiv



Germanys’ Change of Heart is Now Pivotal to The War in Ukraine

Zelensky arrived in Berlin from Rome, where he met with Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and Pope Francis. He flew on a German government plane escorted over German airspace by fighter jets of the Luftwaffe air force, arriving in the middle of the night.




Wearing his trademark khaki combat trousers and a black sweater, the Ukrainian leader was first greeted by German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier before he headed to the nearby chancellery to meet welcomed by Scholz with military honours.


Olaf Scholz’s about-turn on military aid policy will be transformative – and shows how German attitudes to the war are shifting. Unlike British or French politicians, Olaf Scholz doesn’t do pomp. Nor does he do charm. A man who screws up his eyes when he tries to smile, the German chancellor welcomed Ukraine’s president to Berlin on Sunday with characteristic stiffness.

Yet of all Volodymyr Zelenskiy’s meetings with fellow European leaders over the past few days – from Rome to Paris to Chequers today for more hardware and more embraces with Rishi Sunak – his day in Germany may be remembered as the most important. The announcement on the eve of his visit of a doubling of military aid to Ukraine to a total of more than €5bn finally brings Germany in from the cold. The consequences may take months to be seen on the battlefield, but in geo-strategic terms they are immediate.

Zelenskiy knows that he has perhaps only six to eight months for his counteroffensive to make sufficient inroads to force Russia out of the areas it seized in 2022 and, better still, out of lands it annexed in 2014. Doing this would also demonstrate to the west the effectiveness of the support given so far. He knows that if he cannot finish the job this year, he will have to continue into next year in even more difficult circumstances.

He sees the Chinese, the French and others showboating diplomacy not necessarily on Ukraine’s terms. At the same time he is aware that public opinion in several countries is wavering.


Most of all, he sees the lumbering figure of Donald Trump coming into view. Even the prospect of a return to the White House of a man who cannot say which side he supports provides succour to Vladimir Putin and the forces on the far right and far left in Europe who put the vague notion of “peace” ahead of international law, self-determination and human rights.

That is why the debate in Europe, and Germany in particular, is so important. Germans are told to pull their weight but not to throw their weight about. They pride themselves on Vergangenheitsbewältigung, their coming to terms with their past.


Yet in recent years among some sections of society, particularly Scholz’s Social Democrats, one wrong lesson was learned. These “salon pacifists” reinterpreted the phrase “never again” to mean never again going war, rather than never confronting tyranny. The terrible invasion of Iraq reinforced that view.

Ukraine has now shattered that, inserting a concept alien to several generations of “the good war”. But it has required two heaves to get there. The first was the Zeitenwende, the speech Scholz gave three days after Putin’s invasion in which he declared a new approach to hard power and an extra €100bn to be spent on reinforcing Germany’s ailing armed forces.

Having broken the mould so dramatically, the German chancellor returned to type, second-guessing each step, fearful of a backlash from his party. Relations became so toxic that the German president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, was prevented by the Ukrainians at the last moment from visiting Kyiv.

Zelenskiy feted all-comers but froze out the Germans, who complained they were not getting the credit for being one of the largest donors of military aid, amounting to more than €2bn. The problem was that it was offered grudgingly and delivered slowly.

Tensions reached a high in the autumn over the stalled delivery of German-made Leopard 2 tanks. Not only did Scholz refuse to send them, but he also held back re-export licences to Ukraine by other countries of the tanks. He eventually relented, arguing that his position had forced the Americans to release tanks too.

Zelenskiy Arrived in France to meet Macron After Germany visit


Russia Launched Exceptional Missile Attack on Ukrainian Capital Kyiv in Bombardment








Moscow is enraged by the British supply of missiles but Vladimir Putin’s spokesman said it would “not affect” the course of the war "but will lead to retaliatory actions by the Russian Federation”


Zelensky Met PM Sunak as More Ukraine Weapons Pledged

The UK will send hundreds of air defence missiles and armed drones to Ukraine on top of the Storm Shadow cruise missiles announced last week.


The move means the UK is going further than any other country in providing weapons with the potential to tip the battlefield in Ukraine's favour.



Earlier, President Volodymyr Zelensky met the UK's Rishi Sunak as part of his tour of Western allies.

Mr Zelensky said it was important for the West to send fighter jets as well.



Ukraine Receives Jet Fighter Support Pledge From UK & Netherlands





UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and Dutch premier Mark Rutte agreed to build an international coalition to provide Kyiv with F-16s fighter jets.



The UK prime minister said providing fighter jets was "not a straightforward thing", although he did say the UK would form "a key part of the coalition countries" providing that support.


Ukraine is continuing to prepare for a much-anticipated counter-offensive against Russian forces.

Last week, Mr Zelensky told the BBC his country needed more weaponry before it could launch the attack.

On Monday, the Ukrainian president had about two hours of talks with Mr Sunak at Chequers, near London.

He arrived on British soil for a surprise visit after a whirlwind tour of Western Europe that also took in Rome, Berlin and Paris.

Mr Zelensky said Ukraine and the UK were "real partners", while Mr Sunak's spokesman described the meeting as "warm and collegiate".

The Storm Shadow cruise missiles can be used to destroy Russia's positions on occupied Ukrainian territory.

If Ukraine can destroy Russia's command centres, logistics hubs and ammunition depots in occupied territory, then it may prove impossible for Moscow to continue resupplying its frontline troops in places.

This is what Ukraine did so successfully in Kherson last year, forcing the Russians to withdraw almost without a fight. It will now be hoping to repeat the process with the help of Western-supplied munitions.

President Zelensky's repeated calls for Nato to send F-16 jets are being met with delays and obfuscations, for several reasons.

The Ukrainian air force has trained its pilots on F-16s, which the RAF do not use, but such training takes months, not days.

Logistics, maintenance and the need to find suitable runways are all important too.

Finally, there is the question of escalation. Nato is struggling to balance giving Kyiv the maximum support it can, without getting directly drawn into this conflict.

If Nato does end up sending F-16 warplanes, however old they may be, then that, in Moscow's eyes, constitutes a major provocation by the West.

Mr Zelensky said he discussed the supply of Western fighter jets with Mr Sunak.

New jets were a "very important topic for us, because we can't control the sky", the Ukrainian leader added.

"We spoke about it and I see that in the closest time you will hear some, I think, very important decisions, but we have to work a little bit more on it," he said.

The UK has no plans to send fighter jets to Ukraine, according to the prime minister's official spokesman.

But No 10 said elementary training for Ukrainian pilots would begin this summer, along with British efforts to work with other countries on providing F-16 jets to Ukraine.

The prime minister's official spokesman also denied that any drones supplied by the UK would be used to hit targets inside Russia.

They would be used for the defence of Ukraine on Ukrainian sovereign territory, the spokesman said.

Mr Sunak said: "This is a crucial moment in Ukraine's resistance to a terrible war of aggression they did not choose or provoke.

"They need the sustained support of the international community to defend against the barrage of unrelenting and indiscriminate attacks that have been their daily reality for over a year."

In response, Russia said the new British weapons due to be supplied to Kyiv would only cause "further destruction".

"Britain aspires to position itself at the forefront of the countries that continue to pump weapons into Ukraine," Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.
European support

Ukraine secured a new defence aid package from Germany after talks in Berlin with Chancellor Olaf Scholz on Sunday, taking its total military funding to nearly $7bn (£6.44bn).

Mr Zelensky described the new pledge of German Leopard tanks and anti-aircraft systems as "the largest since the beginning of the full-scale aggression" by Russia in February 2022.

France has promised dozens more light tanks and armoured vehicles after President Emmanuel Macron met his Ukrainian counterpart in Paris.



In February, Mr Zelensky visited London for the first time since the start of the war, during which he attended an audience with the King and addressed Parliament.

His latest visit to the UK comes ahead of a G7 gathering in Hiroshima, Japan, later this week which will also be attended by Mr Sunak.


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Old 17-05-23, 10:22   #19
 
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Movies re: Russia Poses Danger to UK & US Must End Prevarication Thats Prolonged The War

Massive Explosion Erupts as Ukrainian Air Forces Destroy Russian Ammunition...






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Old 20-05-23, 05:48   #20
 
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President Zelensky Met With Arab League in Jeddah to ask For HELP as al-Assad Returns to Arab Fold

Syria: Dismay and Fear as Bashar al-Assad Returns to Arab Fold

President Bashar al-Assad strode into the Arab League summit in Jeddah, relishing the clearest recognition yet that he has won his war for Syria.


BBC 20 MAY 2023






He was embraced by the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. A decade ago, the Saudis funded anti-Assad militias. Now the prince, known as MBS, wants to remake the Middle East, and he needs Syria onside.

In a speech, President Assad insisted that Syria would always belong to the Arab world. But other countries should not interfere with what happened inside its borders.


"It is important to leave internal affairs to the country's people as they are best able to manage them," he said.

By the people, President Assad meant the leader and his supporters. Between them, the princes and presidents at the summit have locked up many thousands of their opponents.

Events in Jeddah are being viewed with dismay by Syrians who blame the Assad regime for destroying their country, including all the Syrian refugees I have spoken to in Lebanon.

Lebanon, small and poor, has had to tolerate well over a million Syrians fleeing the war. That is the equivalent of a quarter of the Lebanese population - something like the UK accepting over 15 million refugees.

Now many Lebanese have had enough, making Syrians a convenient scapegoat for their own country's chronic economic and political problems.





A refugee camp in Lebanon


More than one million Syrians have fled to Lebanon, to escape 12 years of war in their home country

In the last few weeks, the army has deported around 1,500 of them back over the border at gunpoint, sometimes leaving children behind in Lebanon or forcing children out without their parents.

A refugee family speaking on condition that their identities were kept secret talked about life in a town near Beirut where a curfew has been imposed on Syrians.

The children have been thrown out of school. The turmoil in their lives is clear in their teenage daughter's anguished artwork. Their father views the authoritarian Arab leaders embrace of Bashar al-Assad with contempt - and fear.

"The Assad regime is a dictatorship - the same as the other Arab regimes. They're helping each other, cooperating against the people."

In a refugee camp in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley, Assad's presence in Jeddah was another crushing blow. Nasser and Marwa, a couple who've been here since 2013, fear Assad's return to the Arab League might be an excuse for more deportations.

Marwa said she woke up every morning thanking God she hadn't been deported.

"Now we're always afraid of the raids. I always imagine that they will come and take all the men and deport them."

Nasser said he faced being drafted into the army if he went back. He escaped Syria to avoid fighting for the regime. He's desperately worried about what would happen to his wife and their 18-month-old daughter Lillas if they are forced back.





Nasser, Lillas and Marwa live in fear of deportation back to Syria

Nasser was disgusted with the Arab League's decision to readmit Assad's Syria.


"After everything that he's done, they're hosting him. I don't understand it, after all the killing and destruction, and the misery in Syria - it's not acceptable."

Syria, and the Assad regime, remain under US and European sanctions. Amnesty International, the human rights group, said that the president "turned Syria into a slaughterhouse".

The UK government, Amnesty said, should "strenuously oppose any attempt to bolster Assad's international standing".

Some members of the Arab League agree. Qatar, which also funded the armed opposition in Syria, does not approve of Assad's gradual return to Arab respectability.

But as well as the wider geopolitical plans of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), who believe the Assad regime is a Middle Eastern reality and Syria a country they need to influence, there are other reasons for wanting to court Assad.

Jordan, as well as the Saudis, are fighting the spread of a narcotic drug called Captagon, which is made in Syria and smuggled into their countries. It is an amphetamine that was given to fighters to boost their endurance but is now widely used as a recreational drug.




The US and UK have imposed sanctions on named members of the Assad family who they say are heavily involved in the Captagon trade. Some estimates say the business is worth more than $50 billion (£40bn) a year.







Saudi officers holding Captagon pills
Other Arab states are fighting the trade in Captagon, made in Syria and smuggled abroad


At the United Nations, which runs a huge relief operation in Syria and Lebanon, there is cautious hope Syria's readmission to the Arab League might somehow become a circuit breaker that allows diplomatic progress.

Imran Riza, the UN's deputy special coordinator for Lebanon, tried to find a positive.

"If what's happening now in the region is going to help to get us to a political solution then it's a good thing."

But the UN does not support forced repatriation. It insists that Syrian refugees cannot return home until their country is safe and secure. That is a long way off.

President Bashar al-Assad broke his country to save his regime. There has been no justice for his victims.

But there is a lesson for ruthless, authoritarian leaders, not least his close ally, Russia's President Vladimir Putin, whose decisive military intervention in 2015 helped the Assad regime to victory.


Wait out the storm and you can outlast your enemies.....


Volodymyr Zelenskyy Lands in Jeddah For Arab League Summit

The Ukrainian president has landed in Saudi Arabia today and is expected to meet the Saudi crown prince on his first-ever trip to the country.

Setting out his priorities for the trip he said he wanted to discuss "political prisoners in Crimea and temporarily occupied territories, the return of our people, peace formula and energy cooperation"



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Old 22-05-23, 06:34   #21
 
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Ukraine War: Satellite Images Reveal Russian Defences Before Major Assault

A beach resort bristling with fortifications. A major road lined with anti-tank ditches. Satellite analysis by BBC Verify has uncovered some of the extensive defences built by Russia as it prepares for a major Ukrainian counter-attack.


BBC 22 MAY 2023






After months of stalemate, the expected assault is likely to be a crucial test for Ukraine as it seeks to prove it can achieve significant battlefield gains with the weapons it has received from the West.


By examining hundreds of satellite images, the BBC has identified some key points in the significant build-up of trenches and other fortifications in southern Ukraine since October.

These four locations offer an insight into what Russia expects from the counter-offensive, and what defences Ukrainian forces might encounter.


1. Crimea's west coast


Seized by Russia in 2014, Crimea was formerly known for its beach resorts.

Now, instead of sun loungers and parasols, the coastline stretching for 15 miles (25km) is littered with defence structures installed by Russian troops.

The image below shows the only open sandy beach on the west coast without natural defences such as cliffs or hills.






Firstly, there are "dragon's teeth" along the shore: pyramid-shaped blocks of concrete, designed to block the path of tanks and other military vehicles.

Behind them is a line of trenches, providing cover from incoming attacks. Several bunkers can also be spotted along the trenches.

Stacks of wood, digging machines and stores of dragon's teeth along the coast suggest building work was still in progress when the image was taken in March.

Some military experts suggest the defences are likely to be a precaution, rather than a sign that Russia expects to defend a seaborne assault, since Ukraine has little naval capacity.

Intelligence analyst Layla Guest says: "The fortifications are likely in place to deter any bold Ukrainian operation to attack Crimea via the sea rather than on land."

The beach fortification is just one example of a vast network of trenches, as shown by the black dots in the map below, based on work by open-source analyst Brady Africk.





BBC Verify has been able to identify other key fortification sites by pinpointing individual trench locations from videos on social media.

Once an exact location was discovered it was then possible to trace an entire trench network using satellite images.


2. Tokmak

The small city of Tokmak lies on a key route in the south-east of the country that Ukrainian forces may want to use to cut off Crimea from other Russian-held territories.

There have been reports that Ukrainian civilians have been moved out in order to turn the city into a military fortress. This would provide soldiers with access to supplies and a base to retreat to.





The satellite image above shows that a network of trenches in two lines has been dug north of Tokmak - the direction Ukraine would have to attack from.

Behind these trenches is a further ring of fortifications around the city, with three layers of defences that can be seen distinctly in this close-up satellite image.





The top of the satellite image shows an anti-tank ditch. These are usually at least 2.5m deep and designed to trap any enemy tanks that attempt to cross.

Behind the ditch are several rows of dragon's teeth and another trench network.





But Ukrainian forces are likely to face further traps.


It's highly likely that mines have also been hidden between Tokmak's three defence lines, says Mark Cancian from the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

"Minefields are a standard part of every defence, and the Russians have used them extensively throughout the war.

"Here they will be large and better concealed, slowing down Ukrainian attacks so that other combat elements, like artillery and infantry, can strike the attacking forces."

BBC Verify has also discovered three other towns near Tokmak have been similarly fortified.


3. E105 highway

A line of anti-tank ditches and trenches now runs alongside a 22-mile (35km) stretch of the E105 main highway, west of Tokmak.








The E105 is strategically important, connecting Russian-held Melitopol in the south with the northern city of Kharkiv, held by Ukraine. The side that controls it can easily move around troops around the region.

If Ukrainian forces attempt to use this road, Russia will likely target it with heavy artillery from behind their defences. Russia's position is also in range of another nearby road - the T401 - which could also be targeted.

"The Russians are worried about the recently built Ukrainian armour units. If these units can get on a main highway, they can move very quickly," says Mr Cancian.

"The Russian defences aim to push them off the roads and therefore slow them down."


4. Rivnopil, north of Mariupol

The port of Mariupol has a strategic position between the Russian-occupied territories in the east and Crimea in the south. It also became a symbol of resistance to invasion when a hard-core of fighters held out for months as the city was besieged.

Given Russia expects Ukraine to try to retake it, BBC Verify decided to look at the territory surrounding the city - leading to the discovery of a collection of circular trenches.

Located near the small village of Rivnopil about 34 miles (55km) north of Mariupol, each circular trench has a mound of soil in the middle, possibly either to protect artillery or to keep guns stable.






Meanwhile, the circular trenches allow soldiers to take cover and to move the artillery so it can aim in any direction.

It shows that Russia is preparing to defend areas of open ground (without natural protection from hills and rivers) alongside their wider trench network.

But some analysts note that Ukrainian forces can use similar satellite images and drone surveillance to identify and bypass many of these defences.

Alexander Lord from strategic advisory firm Sibylline Ltd says: "The Russians will therefore likely attempt to funnel Ukrainian forces down certain routes which are heavily mined and pre-targeted by Russian artillery."


Satellite images show obvious defences - but that might all be part of Russias' plan.





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Old 28-05-23, 11:36   #22
 
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Movies re: NATO on Alert: Wagners in Belarus a Growing Threat to Poland & NATO

Russia Poses Danger to UK and The US Must End The Prevarication That May Have Prolonged The War

It’s Zelenskiy who is setting the pace diplomatically and strategically.

Kyiv Hit by New MASSIVE Russian Drone Attack as Capital Marks Its Founding Birthday 1,541 Years Ago
The Russian Weapon That Signals The Start of a New Stage in Warfare

Blindingly fast and manoeuvrable, new hypersonic missiles pose a tough challenge to defend – and they’re only just getting started


BBC 28 MAY 2023





The moment has arrived: Biden must give Ukraine all it needs to win

Foot-dragging, indecision and fearfulness have characterised Joe Biden’s off-screen approach to Ukraine since Russia invaded 15 months ago, compounding doubts about the durability of US support as the 2024 presidential election campaign kicks off.



The contrast between Biden and the bold, energetic leadership of Ukraine’s president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, is striking. One man frets about disaster and loss. The other thinks only of winning.


Biden’s latest, belated and incomplete volte-face, over providing US-made F-16 combat jets, illustrates the problem. Zelenskiy has been asking for fighter planes since the war began. Neighbours such as Poland were sympathetic. Yet afraid of provoking a fight with Russia, Biden, national security adviser Jake Sullivan, and Pentagon officials publicly opposed supplying F-16s until as recently as March.


Zelenskiy wanted the planes because he knew Ukraine was vulnerable from the air. As the invasion unfolded, Ukraine’s people, homes and vital infrastructure were mercilessly pounded by Russian missiles. Ukraine’s foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, has explained how F-16s or similar planes might have supported air defence systems, reduced casualties and protected ground troops. But they were not forthcoming.

Biden and Sullivan also rejected proposals by experienced former US generals for Nato-patrolled “humanitarian no-fly zones”, initially in western Ukraine, to protect civilians from aerial assault. Although admittedly risky, safe havens akin to past operations in Iraq, Bosnia and Libya might have saved many lives and stemmed the refugee exodus. They still could.

Biden’s argument, then as now, is that such interventions, coming on top of large-scale US arms shipments, intelligence-sharing and aid, might be viewed by Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin, as escalatory. This seems sensible at first glance. Yet it’s way too cautious. Putin and his lickspittle poltroons, Dmitry Medvedev and Sergei Lavrov, are adept at playing on western fears. Whenever new forms of assistance for Kyiv are mooted, they spew dire threats, sometimes involving nuclear weapons.

Biden should listen to Antony Blinken. His secretary of state has spotted a pattern over the past year: Kremlin warnings of retaliation and direct confrontation rarely amount to much in practice. The Russians huff and puff – but mostly bluff. Putin is not entirely stupid. He knows he’d never win a fight with Nato, let alone survive nuclear warfare.

Another pattern is apparent: Biden’s chronic indecision. Protracted humming and hawing last year delayed supplies of Stinger anti-aircraft missiles, Patriot batteries, longer-range high-altitude missiles, and M1 Abrams battle tanks – all of which were eventually delivered. European allies such as Germany used White House waffling to excuse their own foot-dragging.

These prevarications may have needlessly prolonged the war.


The F-16 U-turn, confirmed at last weekend’s G7 summit in Hiroshima, paves the way for training Ukrainian pilots and the provision of “fourth-generation” jets by Nato allies. Yet it’s a typical Biden fudge. The US itself has not committed to supply planes. If it does, it’s unclear whether they will be the latest F-16 models equipped with the latest weapons.

Unconvincing explanations are offered for US dithering. Officials say they followed a deliberate plan to ensure Ukraine first received all the heavy weaponry and armoured vehicles required for its long-anticipated counter-offensive. “We could certainly have started earlier, but there were much higher priorities, and it’s seen by some as an escalatory act,” said US air force secretary Frank Kendall, referring to F-16 training.

In fact, it was pressure from US allies that proved irresistible when the 50-nation Ukraine Contact Group met at Ramstein air base in Germany last month. US defence secretary Lloyd Austin was urged to think again by old friends such as Britain and the Netherlands, as well as by the eastern Europeans.

On his return to Washington, Austin advised Biden to drop his veto.


The American shift on fighter planes is a personal triumph for Zelenskiy. His tireless lobbying bore fruit, once again overcoming Biden’s hesitancy and assuaging, if not dispelling, his misgivings. And it shone a light on yet another emerging pattern: how Ukraine’s president, not America’s risk-averse commander-in-chief or the Nato alliance, is driving the west’s wartime agenda.

Zelenskiy’s leading role was highlighted when he stole the show in Hiroshima, making a dramatic entrance after flying in late from an Arab League summit in Jeddah. Ukraine does not belong to the G7, or to the EU or Nato for that matter. But Zelenskiy has earned a place at the top table. His irrepressible diplomacy, aided by Putin’s blundering, has brought membership of both latter organisations within reach.

As a leader capable of inspiring his people and influencing international opinion, Zelenskiy puts Biden, Emmanuel Macron, Olaf Scholz and Rishi Sunak to shame. He is also changing the strategic conversation in fundamental ways. US policy towards China, especially Taiwan, has hardened tangibly due to Russia’s aggression – but also thanks to Zelenskiy’s success in re-emphasising the inviolability of territorial borders and national sovereignty as globally recognised imperatives.

Ukraine is increasingly setting the pace on the ground, too, independently of its main backers. Incursions into southern Russia by anti-regime militia using US military vehicles, an audacious drone attack on the Kremlin, sabotage, assassinations and mystery explosions in occupied Crimea are a likely prelude to Kyiv’s pivotal counter-offensive. Success is vital if it is to head off Chinese and possible Franco-German pressure this winter to trade land for peace.

All this activity, licit and illicit, is compounding White House jitters as American public support for Ukraine appears to soften. Since neither of his main 2024 Republican challengers, Donald Trump and Ron DeSantis, is committed to assisting Kyiv, Biden must be braver and do more, faster – for his time, and Ukraine’s, may be running out. Biden describes the war as a seminal struggle between liberty and tyranny.

It is. So give Zelenskiy all he needs to win.



The Russian Weapon That Signals The Start of a New Stage in Warfare




It was supposed to be the missile that no one could stop. The hypersonic “dagger” that Vladimir Putin could slip into Ukraine – and Nato’s – chest, like an assassin wielding a blade so fast that the lethal blow is just a blur. Dead before you know it....



Russia Poses Danger to UK

The outgoing head of the RAF has told The Telegraph that Russia poses a danger to the UK if it loses in Ukraine and he fears “vindictive” action.




Air Chief Marshal Sir Mike Wigston, the outgoing Chief of the Air Staff, has said that Russia poses a direct threat to Britain if it loses in Ukraine. He warned that the threat will endure or even get worse if Vladimir Putin is ousted and says the Kremlin has means of harming us “through air attack, missile attack and subsurface attack”.
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Old 07-06-23, 17:07   #23
 
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Movies re: NATO on Alert: Wagners in Belarus a Growing Threat to Poland & NATO

Beginning of The End For PUTIN With Break-Up of Russia Coming

Vladimir Putin could be facing the beginning of his own end and further break-ups of Russia are likely once the country is defeated in Ukraine, Luke Coffey, Senior Fellow at the Hudson Institute, said

Ukraine Dam: Thousands Flee Floods After Dam Collapse Near Nova Kakhovka

A Biblical Deluge: People Along Dnipro River Wake Up to Catastrophe - 'The water keeps rising'


BBC 7 JUNE 2023
























Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians are without normal access to drinking water after the Kakhovka dam was destroyed, President Volodymyr Zelensky has said.

Tens of thousands remain in flooded areas in southern Ukraine, he said, accusing Russia of failing to help those trapped in parts they controlled.

There are fears that water levels could rise further.



Ukraine and Russia accused each other of blowing up the dam on Tuesday, but the BBC cannot verify the claims.

Russian President Vladimir Putin called the breach "a barbaric act" in a phone call with Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the Kremlin said in a statement.

Mr Zelensky said he had also spoken to President Erdogan, and had stressed the "humanitarian and environmental consequences" of the disaster.

"Hundreds of thousands of people have been left without normal access to drinking water," Ukraine's president said on his Telegram channel.

"We can only help on the territory controlled by Ukraine. On the part occupied by Russia, the occupiers are not even trying to help people," he added.

As mass evacuations continued on Wednesday in Ukraine's Kherson region, satellite images highlighted widespread devastation there.

One of the photos showed a flooded port and industrial area in the regional capital Kherson, which is under Ukrainian control.





Graphic Showing Evacuated Areas of Ukraine After Burst Dam


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Old 14-06-23, 06:18   #24
 
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Movies Re: END For PUTIN-Wagner Chief Says Russia Losing Badly -Skulls Uncovered in Drained

Skulls Uncovered in Reservoir After Being Drained Following Ukraine Dam Breach

The Nova Kakhovka dam burst earlier this month, an incident deemed a major humanitarian and environmental disaster by many.

Wagner Chief Admits Russia Losing Badly Against Ukraines’ Counter-Offensive


Wagner Group financier and internally recognised war criminal Yevgeny Prigozhin issued yet another rebuke of the Armed Forces of Russia stationed in Ukraine on Tuesday in what he claimed was merely his update on the ongoing Ukrainian counter-offensives.


BBC 14 JUNE 2023






The human remains are believed to date back decades, as one skull can be seen wearing a World War II helmet.


Eight decades ago, the area became the theatre of the Battle of the Dnipro, during which thousands of German and Soviet soldiers lost their lives.

During this key WWII fight, the Soviet Army launched a counter-attack against the Germans, an operation which involved more than six million troops.

In late 1943, the fight focused on Nikopol, where many of the skeletons were found.










The level of water in the Kakhovka Reservoir continues to decrease. The human remains are believed to be dating back decades

At the time, Nikopol was a site of metal ore mines Adolf Hitler was determined to hold on to.


However, after sustaining a series of attacks launched by Soviet troops led by Marshal Rodion Malinovsky during the last months of 1943, German soldiers were eventually abandoned the town in February 1944.

The human remains may be mostly of Wehrmacht troops, Oleksii Kokot, an expert on German military relics in Ukraine, said.

The commentator explained the Soviet fallen were buried, while "dead German soldiers were just left lying in the fields … therefore, these could really be German soldiers".



Wagner Chief Admits Russia Losing Badly Against Ukraines’ Counter-Offensive

Wagner Group financier and internally recognised war criminal Yevgeny Prigozhin issued yet another rebuke of the Armed Forces of Russia stationed in Ukraine on Tuesday in what he claimed was merely his update on the ongoing Ukrainian counter-offensives.



Wagner Group Stage Military Rebellion as They Refuse to Work for Russias' Army


Russian forces are “not doing enough to fight back against” the rapidly advancing Ukrainian troops, the Wagner Group leader has claimed. As Russian President Vladimir Putin baselessly suggested during a meeting with military journalists on Tuesday that his forces had destroyed 160 Ukrainian tanks and 360 armoured vehicles since the beginning of the counter offensive, Yevgeny Prigozhin shrugged off the claims as inaccurate, saying Ukraine had suffered only “normal combat losses”.

A US official familiar with American intelligence said Putin’s comments were “not accurate” and cautioned about putting any stock in Russia’s public assessments as more footage emerged purporting to show Ukrainian successes on the battlefield.



The Ruble Could End Putins' Reign Chart Maps Russian Currencys' Staggering Collapse


The ruble has now lost 34 percent of its value against the US dollar since its high point just over a year ago, making imports ever costlier for all suffering under Putin's regime.








Mass disinformation campaigns and an iron rule may be enough to prevent the Russian people from overthrowing Vladimir Putin, but the country's business elites are unlikely to suffer vanishing profit margins for long.


Last June, 100 units of the currency bought $1.85 at the peak of Russia’s exploitation of skyrocketing prices for its energy exports.


This has fallen to $1.21 today.


Combined with labour shortages this has the effect of intensifying inflationary pressures, and the Russian central bank has indicated it may have to hike the country’s interest rate for the first time since the early days of the war.

Alarm bells have been sounded by foreign analysts and policymakers in Moscow before, but the Russian economy has so far been able to defy doomsayers.

This time, however, the situation on the home front is heating up just as Ukrainian forces claim the first victories in their long-anticipated counteroffensive.

The ruble has now lost 34 percent of its value against the US dollar since its high point just over a year ago, making imports ever costlier for all suffering under Putin's regime.
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Old 25-06-23, 08:16   #25
 
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Movies re: NATO on Alert: Wagners in Belarus a Growing Threat to Poland & NATO

Coup in Russia - The Wagner Rebellion in Russia Turns Back - Wagner Chiefs' 24 hours of Chaos in Russia

Newspapers around the world raced to cover fast-moving events inside Russia, with many assessing what it could mean for Vladimir Putin

Wagner Mutineers Turn Back - Wagner’s rebellious mercenary leader will move to Belarus under the terms of a truce agreed with President Putin, the Kremlin said on Saturday night.


BBC NEWS 25 JUNE 2023







Yevgeny Prigozhin, who was greeted like a hero by supporters in Rostov-on-Don, had earlier turned his fighters back from marching on Moscow on a dramatic day in Russia.



The Russian military has ordered Wagner troops to return to their bases amid reports the mercenary group has launched a coup against the Kremlin. On Friday night Yevgeny Prigozhin, the Wagner mercenary leader, accused the Russian military of shelling his fighters and said his group would stop the “evil” of Moscow’s military leadership, while Russia deployed armoured vehicles on the streets of Rostov.

For one long June night and a day, Russia's notorious mercenary leader Yevgeny Prigozhin staged an apparent insurrection, sending an armoured convoy towards Moscow and raising questions about Vladimir Putin's grip on power.

The Russian president even accused his former ally of treason, embarking on an armed rebellion and "a stab in the back of our country".

But by the end of Saturday, Prigozhin had called the whole thing off and ordered his men back to base.

"In 24 hours we got to within 200km (124 miles) of Moscow. In this time we did not spill a single drop of our fighters' blood," he announced.

Twenty-four hours of mayhem, and so much we don't know.
Was the Wagner boss planning a coup?

Prigozhin was adamant this was "a march for justice", not a coup. Whatever it was, it came to an end very fast.

For months he has played a vital role in Russia's military campaign in Ukraine, recruiting thousands to his Wagner mercenary group, especially from Russian jails.

He has long been in a public feud with the military chiefs running the war, but that turned into open revolt as they sought to bring his forces under their command structure by 1 July.



Wagner fighters crossed from occupied eastern Ukraine into the big southern Russian city of Rostov-on-Don, then moved up the main motorway via Voronezh, en route to Moscow.

It felt like a defining moment in Russia's 16-month full-scale invasion of Ukraine. But as the Wagner convoy headed north, there came news of a deal, bizarrely brokered by Belarus leader Alexander Lukashenko.

Few believe the story is as simple as that, but if the Kremlin is right this may be the end of Prigozhin's role in the war and in Russia itself.

He is heading to Belarus and will not face criminal charges, says the Kremlin. His fighters have been promised an amnesty. Was it entirely bloodless? That is unclear as at least one military helicopter was shot down.

And where this leaves Vladimir Putin is another matter.


Wagner vs Russias' Military Chiefs

Prigozhin has raged and ranted for months at Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu and armed forces chief Valery Gerasimov about their failure to supply his mercenaries with sufficient kit and ammunition.

When President Putin backed their deadline to bring all mercenary groups fighting in Ukraine to sign defence ministry contracts, he refused, seeing it as a challenge to his influence.

In a lengthy tirade on 23 June he told Russians the whole justification for their war was a lie and merely an excuse for "a small group of scumbags" to promote themselves and deceive the public and president.

Then came an extraordinary escalation in their dispute.


Prigozhin accused the military of staging a deadly attack on his men in Ukraine. The military denied launching a strike and the video he produced as evidence revealed nothing.

Late on Friday he announced his "march for justice" was under way.

"There are 25,000 of us and we are going to find out why there is such chaos in the country," Prigozhin exclaimed. "Everyone who wants, join us."

Gen Sergei Surovikin, deputy commander of forces in Ukraine, appealed to him to step back and submit to President Putin's authority.

Moving his forces across the border into Rostov-on-Don overnight, he claimed control of the military HQ from where the war is being run, and videos showed his men in the centre of the city apparently encountering no resistance.

By Saturday morning he declared: "We are inside [military] headquarters." The city, he said later, had been taken "without a shot".

Russia's FSB security service then opened a criminal case. The entire Moscow region was put on an alert under a strict "counter-terrorist operation regime", as was Voronezh halfway up the M4 motorway from Rostov.


Putins' Televised Address

On Saturday morning, looking stern and determined, Vladimir Putin gave a five-minute address on state-run TV and appealed for unity.

"What we are facing is precisely treason," he told the nation. Without naming his former ally, he said those behind the military mutiny had betrayed Russia and would answer for it.

Prigozhin quickly denied betraying his country, and then went on to criticise the president as "deeply wrong".

Until this point he had never directly targeted his anger at Mr Putin.

But his sarcastic references to "happy grandfather" were widely seen as indirect criticism. Last month he asked how Russia could win if it turned out that "this grandfather is a complete arsehole".

Columns of armoured Wagner vehicles were soon seen heading up the motorway through Voronezh region and further north into Lipetsk too.

A fuel depot was set alight `by an airstrike in Voronezh, although it was not clear why.



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Old 02-07-23, 15:25   #26
 
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Movies Re: Putins' Humiliation -Wagner Deals With Syria to Create Worlds' Biggest Fighting F

Major Russian Military Event Cancelled in Fresh Humiliation For Putin --- Wagner Negotiating Syria Deal to Create Biggest Fighting Force in The World

Russia Launches First Overnight Drone Attack on Kyiv Since Wagner Mutiny - Putin Gives KILL Order against Chief Mutineer Prigozhin.

Russia Did Evacuate Orphanages From Ukraine Says Lavrov Following ICC Arrest Warrant

Ukrainian Forces Blow Up Multiple Russian Vehicles in HUGE Explosions


BBC NEWS 2 JULY 2023





Bashar al-Assad and Vladimir Putin meet in Moscow last March.





Representatives of Wagner Group were negotiating a lucrative deal with President Bashar al-Assad to make Syria its biggest base, just days before its troops attempted to stage a coup in Moscow.


Officials in Damascus were ready to agree to increase the number of Wagner fighters in Syria by more than tenfold - seeing the move as a route to strengthening ties with the Kremlin - but were blindsided by events in Russia last week.

The Assad regime is considering whether there is a way to keep the multi-million-dollar contracts with Yevgeny Prigozhin's companies, while not risking the direct military support Damascus receives from Moscow.


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Old 09-07-23, 06:55   #27
 
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Movies re: NATO on Alert: Wagners in Belarus a Growing Threat to Poland & NATO

Fearful Germany Preparing to Block Ukraines' Nato Bid

Germany plans to postpone Ukraine's accession to the North Atlantic Alliance during the upcoming NATO summit in Vilnius on July 11-12 for fear that Ukrainian membership will lead to a war between the bloc and Russia


BBC NEWS 9 JUL 2023







According to the source, Germany plans to call on NATO members at the summit to focus on increasing security guarantees rather than on a potential membership bid.

"Time is needed to develop guarantees that would essentially block membership... Berlin does not want Putin to potentially test Article 5," the source told The Telegraph.


The next NATO summit will take place in Vilnius on July 11-12, where the topic of the Russia-Ukraine war is expected to occupy a high place on the agenda. Despite this, the alliance has not made any promises to Ukraine about extending a membership offer, and has instead expressed an intention to bring Ukraine "closer" to the alliance.

Countries are split about whether to support a Ukrainian membership bid, with some offering full support for Ukraine and others remaining weary about the potential drawbacks of sponsorship.
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Old 13-07-23, 07:06   #28
 
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Movies Re: Ukraine-NATO Agrees Land/Sea/Air Military Equipment /Russian Chief Calls CIA Chie

NATO Summit Ends; G7 Signs Declaration Outlining Support For Ukraine

G7 signed declaration of support for Ukraine and said they would provide security and economic support, including modern military equipment across land, air, and sea

Australia to Send 30 More Bushmasters to Ukraine

Wagner Revolt - Wagner Boss Prighozin Had Been Treated For Cancer and Had Nothing to Lose Before Mutiny & Russian Spy Chief Confirms Call to CIA Director After Mutiny...

---Sergei Naryshkin says he and Bill Burns discussed the mutiny and ‘what to do with Ukraine’ in phone call last month


BBC NEWS 13 JUL 2023







G7 leaders announce a joint declaration of support for Ukraine, as the NATO summit is held in Vilnius, Lithuania, 12 July 2023

G7 members are expected to ratify a wide-ranging security pact with Ukraine at the Nato summit on Wednesday.
But they stopped short of providing a timeframe for Kyiv to join the security alliance, provoking the anger of President Volodymyr Zelensky.

The security arrangement will include defence equipment, training and intelligence sharing.





And UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said it would send a "strong signal" to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The security arrangement with Ukraine comes after its President Volodymyr Zelensky raged against Nato's reluctance to offer Kyiv a timeframe for joining the alliance.

G7 leaders will sign the declaration in Vilnius on Wednesday on the side-lines of the second day of a Nato defence summit.

Speaking ahead of a meeting with President Zelensky on Wednesday, Mr Sunak said Kyiv's allies were ramping up their "formal arrangements to protect Ukraine for the long term".

"We can never see a repeat of what has happened in Ukraine and this declaration reaffirms our commitment to ensure it is never left vulnerable to the kind of brutality Russia has inflicted on it again," he said.

British officials said the UK had played a leading role in the agreement involving G7 partners Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the US. More details are expected on Wednesday.

But unlike Nato membership - this does not include a clause to come to the target nation's aid during a time of attack.

The G7 announcement comes after Nato said Ukraine could join the military alliance "when allies agree and conditions are met" - a delay Mr Zelensky has called "absurd".

Kyiv accepts it cannot join Nato while it is at war with Russia but wants to join as soon as possible after fighting ends.

Addressing crowds in the Lithuanian capital on Tuesday, Mr Zelensky said: "Nato will give Ukraine security - Ukraine will make the alliance stronger."

He also presented a battle flag from the destroyed city of Bakhmut - the site of the longest, and possibly bloodiest, battle in Russia's invasion of Ukraine.

Mr Zelensky had earlier tweeted that "uncertainty is weakness", and said the lack of an agreed timeframe meant his country's eventual membership could become a bargaining chip.

Nato might not have said when and how Ukraine might join the alliance, but diplomats emphasised that they had set out a clear path to membership, with the onerous application process shortened significantly.

They said they had recognised that Ukraine's army was increasingly "interoperable" and more "politically integrated" with Nato forces, and promised continue supporting reforms to Ukraine's democracy and security sector.

Diplomats also highlighted the creation of a new Nato-Ukraine Council, meeting on Wednesday for the first time, which will give Kyiv the right to summon meetings of the whole alliance.

Some member states fear near-automatic membership for Ukraine could give Russia an incentive to both escalate and prolong the war.

In the past, Western security pledges failed to deter two Russian invasions. Nato allies hope a third round will be robust and explicit enough to persuade the Kremlin that further aggression would be too costly.

A series of military packages for Ukraine were also announced at the summit on Tuesday.

A coalition of 11 nations will start training Ukrainian pilots to fly US-made F-16 fighter jets at a centre to be set up in Romania in August, officials said.

They gave the go-ahead to supply Ukraine with advanced jets, including the long sought F-16s - a significant upgrade on the Soviet-era planes it is currently using.

Ukraine had repeatedly lobbied its Western allies to provide jets to help with its recently-begun counter-offensive aiming to retake territory seized by Russia.

However experts say the training of Ukrainian pilots to fly and operate Western jets will take some time.

In addition to the G7 security pact, the UK has announced plans to deliver more than 70 combat and logistics vehicles to Ukraine, aimed at boosting its counteroffensive operation.

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Old 26-07-23, 11:55   #29
 
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Movies Re: Belarus Tries to STOP Wagner From Attacking Poland-Putin Trying to Destabilise Eu

Lukashenko Struggling to Keep Wagner Troops From Attacking Poland

Russia Takes Control Over Wagner Groups' Prison Recruitment Pipeline

Ukrainian Drones Attack Moscow High-Rise Building Ablaze in Russian Capital

Belarus is struggling to restrain Wagner mercenaries from attacking Poland, Alexander Lukashenko has said. The Belarusian leader made the claim during a meeting with Vladimir Putin in St Petersburg, days after Warsaw accused Moscow of using Wagner and Minsk to destabilise Eastern Europe.


BBC 26 JULY 2023





Putin ‘plans to use Wagner fighters to invade land between Poland and Lithuania. Putin 'targets NATO's weakest links with invasion threat from Wagner fighters'






The Russian Wagner Group is poised to set free the last of its convict recruits as Russia seizes control of the prison recruitment pipeline. UK’s Ministry of Defence said the recruitment drive of criminals only resulted in "one of the bloodiest episodes in modern military history"


Wagner leader Yevgeny Prigozhin once boasted that he recruited 50,000 convicts to fill the ranks of his mercenary army to help aid Russia with the war in Ukraine. The troops held a huge role in capturing the eastern Ukrainian city of Bakhmut which was one of Russia's few recent claims of success.

The UK’s Ministry of Defence said in its daily update on Friday, that the recruitment drive of criminals only resulted in "one of the bloodiest episodes in modern military history". It said: “Up to 20,000 convict recruits were killed within a few months.”



Moscow Skyscraper in Flames as Russians Claim Ukrainian Drone Attack Missed Target






The high-rise building was set ablaze in the Russian capital after drone attacks suspected to have been orchestrated by Ukraine targeted Russian Defence Ministry facilities


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Old 31-07-23, 07:27   #30
 
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Movies re: NATO on Alert: Wagners in Belarus a Growing Threat to Poland & NATO

Ukraine WAR: 'People Call Us The Ghosts of Bakhmut' - Ghosts Attack in Bakhmut From All Sides

War is Coming to Russia, Zelenskiy Warns After Latest Drone Attacks on Russia

Putin Mixes Threats of New Offensive in Ukraine With Offers of Peace Talks


Russian President Vladimir Putin made extensive comments about the war in Ukraine, alternating threats of a new Russian offensive to grab more Ukrainian land with statements about the Kremlin’s readiness for peace talks

BBC 31 JUL 2023





Sniper commander Ghost says his team got the name "The Ghosts of Bakhmut" after they started their operations in the area





Sniping team marksman Kuzia checks his rifle one last time before heading out on their mission


Ukrainian forces are trying to retake the city of Bakhmut in the country's east. The BBC was given exclusive access to a team of elite snipers, referred to as "the Ghosts of Bakhmut", who are conducting night raids nearby.



Ghost, the sniping team's commander, takes us to the place he calls the "edge of existence" - their base on the outskirts of the city.

"Ghost is my call sign" he tells me. "When we started bringing terror to Bakhmut, we got the name 'the Ghosts of Bakhmut'."

Their base is already well within the range of Russian artillery. Ghost doesn't flinch at the crump of a shell landing nearby. "The artillery always makes people worry," he says. "You can hide from artillery, but not from a sniper".

The Ghosts, a team of around 20 soldiers, have been operating on the edges of Bakhmut for the past six months.

They often hunt for high-value targets.

I ask Ghost how many Russians his team have killed. He says, "there's a confirmed number - 524. Seventy-six of those are mine". The team electronically records every shot through the sights of their rifle.

Not everyone's keeping count though. Kuzia, the marksman for tonight's mission, says "it's nothing to be proud of. We're not killing people, we're destroying the enemy".

Before the war he worked in a factory. He says he never liked guns, but felt compelled to take up arms when Russia invaded.

Kuzia does one final check of his US-made Barrett sniper rifle: "Each mission is dangerous, when we make a mistake the enemy can hit you," he says. "Of course I'm scared - only a fool wouldn't be."

On tonight's mission he'll be accompanied by Taras, his spotter. Kusch is the driver - who'll bring them as close as possible to the front line. From there the two-man team will have to walk more than a mile to reach their target.

Ghost will remain back at the base, along with the rookie, known simply as the Brit.

The youngest member of the team got the name after receiving his initial training in the UK. He's yet to have his first confirmed kill.



Ghost says he's handpicked every member of the team based on their "humanity and patriotism" rather than their military experience and skills.

As dusk approaches the team climbs into their armoured Humvee. I, and cameraman Moose Campbell, will accompany them to the drop-off point.

Kusch, the driver, tells us that part of the route is still being targeted by Russian artillery.

As he starts the engine the team all give themselves the sign of the cross. Kusch starts to play some music from his phone. He says the Ukrainian rap song gets them in the mood. But it'll also mask the sound of the shelling.

At first it's hard to hear the explosions nearby because of the rattle of the Humvee, which Kusch drives at speed over pot-holed tracks. But he points to the sky several times and warns, "incoming". There are a few thuds nearby.

We pass half a dozen wrecked Ukrainian armoured vehicles that weren't so fortunate. Kusch points to minefields on either side of the dirt track




The sniping team, alongside the BBC's Jonathan Beale and cameraman Moose Campbell, inside a vehicle near Bakhmut

The vehicle the team is travelling in is damaged by shrapnel after an explosion nearby


Twenty minutes later we come to an abrupt halt close to a ruined house. The two-man sniper team open the doors and disappear towards a tree line. Kusch shouts out, "God be with you" before making a fast exit.

As we return there's a flash of orange and a louder explosion. The Humvee starts to rattle even more. Kusch opens his door, while driving, to look behind and lets out a stream of swear words.

A piece of shrapnel has shredded one of the back tyres. It's a nerve-wracking hobble back to base. When we finally return he shows us the large piece of jagged metal which tore apart the tyre.

It's now dark and the shelling has subsided. Inside their base they anxiously hold on to their radios for news from the sniper team. Kusch and the Brit pace the floor.

Ghost makes a phone call to his seven-year-old daughter. She's on speaker when she excitedly shouts, "I love you daddy". It's a brief burst of normality - but he's already taught her how to strip a gun.

Seven hours later, with little sleep, it's time for the extraction. We shelter in the building while there's a volley of incendiary fire, and then make our way back into the Humvee.

This time it's dark, but Kusch tries to drive from memory - avoiding turning on the headlights to attract attention. Another abrupt halt and the two-man sniper team gets back inside the Humvee.

The relief is palpable when we get back to their base.





An aerial view shows destroyed buildings in Bakhmut, taken on 15 June

Kuzia says: "One shot, one target."


Later they show us the video from the night-scope. They say it was a Russian machine-gunner who'd been firing at Ukrainian troops near the front line.

They'll rest now until the next night's mission. Kuzia says: "I'm happy to be back and happy that everyone's alive".


Over the past six months several of the team have been injured, including the commander Ghost. But none of them have been killed.

Ghost says "every trip may be our last, but we're doing a noble deed".

One small team of snipers won't win this war, or even take back Bakhmut. But they believe they're having an impact.

Kusch says it has a psychological effect on their enemy - hunting down one Russian soldier at a time from a place that can't be seen and with a sound that can't be heard.


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Old 04-08-23, 11:22   #31
 
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Movies re: US FINALLY Approves Sending F-16s From Denmark & Netherlands -Training to Begin

NATO on Alert: Poland Accuses Belarus of Violating Airspace - Tensions Building Between Poland and Belarus

Poland has detained another suspected member of a Russian spy network, bringing the total number of people detained as part of an investigation to 16


Explosions Reported at Russian Port on Black Sea; EU Urges Moscow to Stop Grain ‘Blackmail’

Putin is Using Food as a Weapon – But His Cynical Attempts to Drum Up Forced Allies Will Fail


BBC 4 AUG 2023







Ukraine and US start talks on security guarantees; EU urges G20 ministers to help persuade Putin to reopen grain export route


Sea drone attack reported on Russian Black Sea port of Novorossiysk

Russia says it repelled a seaborne drone attack by Ukraine off Novorossiysk, a major hub for exports.





Ukraine claims to have put a Russian Black Sea fleet ship out of action


Ukraine’s intelligence services have claimed to have put the Russian Black Sea fleet vessel Olenegorsky Gornyak out of action, saying it has sustained a serious breach and is currently unable to carry out combat missions.

Reuters reports an intelligence source has told it that the sea drone attack was carried out by Ukraine’s SBU security service and its navy.



Polands' Military is Redeploying 46,000 More Units Closer to its Border With Belarus as fears grow over Putin expansionism





That's after reports of Russia's Wagner mercenary group training Belarusian soldiers in the area. People in Poland near the border said they could hear shooting and helicopters. Warsaw had already sent additional forces to boost security at the border with Belarus earlier month.

Polands prime minister said that Wagner's increasing presence in Belarus was a growing threat to Poland and NATO.

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Old 18-08-23, 05:13   #32
 
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Movies re: Ukraine Continues to BLOW UP & Obliterate Parts of Russia & BLAST/Destroy Russia Arms

US FINALLY Approves Sending F-16 Jets to Ukraine From Denmark and Netherlands & Allows Training to Begin

The Biden administration has formally approved the transfer of F-16 training materials to Denmark, allowing Ukrainian pilots to begin training on the long-anticipated fighter jets


BBC 18 AUG 2023






At the same time, the U.S. this week provided written assurances to Denmark and the Netherlands promising to “expedite” the approval of all necessary transfer requests so that the aircraft can be sent to the battlefield as soon as the pilots are trained to use them, according to one of the U.S. officials and a State Department spokesperson.


“This way, Ukraine can take full advantage of its new capabilities as soon as the first set of pilots complete their training,” said the official, who was also familiar with the letter. Reuters previously reported the U.S. assurances of a speedy approval.

Taken together, the moves signal a new sense of urgency from Washington to get fighter jets to the battlefield as soon as possible. The move to green light Denmark’s request to transfer training materials — such as instruction manuals and flight simulators — is the last bureaucratic hurdle on the U.S. side before the training can begin.

The program will begin “soon,” said the first U.S. official. All three individuals were granted anonymity to discuss sensitive deliberations.

Ukraine has sent the U.S. a list of 32 pilots it says are ready for training, but the official said only eight have the English language skills to complete the course. The other 24 must go through an English language instruction program run by the United Kingdom before they can start training on the jets.

On Wednesday, a Ukrainian official said that Kyiv was not expecting to receive the jets this year, meaning they would not be available for the current counteroffensive.

Meanwhile, Denmark and the Netherlands had asked for U.S. assurances that it would quickly approve their requests to transfer aircraft to Ukraine, once the pilots are trained, according to the first U.S. official.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken sent letters to his Danish and Dutch counterparts earlier this week providing those assurances, according to the first U.S. official and a State Department spokesperson.

Denmark and the Netherlands, which are leading a coalition of 11 countries to train F-16 pilots, still have not officially said they would send jets to the battlefield. But the letter from Blinken signals that when they do request the third-party transfer, Washington will move quickly to approve it.

“The United States is in active discussions with our European partners about how we can support the efforts to provide Ukraine with F-16 pilot training as quickly as possible,” the State Department spokesperson said



Meanwhile, two Russian nationals have been arrested in Poland for allegedly trying to recruit for the Wagner Group amid mounting unease over the mercenaries’ presence in neighbouring Belarus.

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Old 22-08-23, 17:05   #33
 
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Movies re: Ukraine Continues to BLOW UP & Obliterate Parts of Russia & BLAST/Destroy Russia Arms

Moscow Airports in Lockdown as Ukraine Drones Lay Siege to Russia..

Russia Says MORE Drones Injured Five at Kursk Railway Station

---Top Russian General Admits His Troops Cannot Win

Ukraine Brings War to Putins’ Door as Powerful Drone Attack Rocks Moscow

Ukrainian 'Navy SEAL' Special Forces, Trained by British SAS, Cause Havoc For Russia


BBC 22 AUG 2023





BOOM..........


Moscows’ four main airports were plunged into chaos this morning after officials closed runways in fear of alleged Ukrainian drone attacks.

The capitals’ airspace was locked down early in the morning, forcing around 50 incoming flights to divert at the last minute while another 50 waiting to take off were grounded.


The move followed reports by the Russian Defence Ministry that a drone had been downed via electronic warfare in a rural area around 60 miles west of Vnukovo International Airport.

No flights were able to take off from or land at Vnukovo as well as Domodedovo, Sheremetyevo and Zhukovsky airports, which together handle almost all the capital’s flight traffic.

Operations were close to resuming after two hours of disruption before a second was shot down only 25 miles outside the capital, in the Istra District.

The wreckage is believed to have crashed near the home of one of Putin’s most loyal propagandists, who quickly tried to spin the incident into a success for the Russian military.


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Old 23-08-23, 17:18   #34
 
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Movies Re: Ukraine Continues to BLOW UP & Obliterate Parts of Russia & BLAST/Destroy Russia

Ukraine Blows Up Five Jets Deep Within Russian Territory - What We Know About Drone Attacks in Russia

Wagners' Prigozhin Makes First Video Appearance Since Moscow Mutiny

Wagners' Soldiers Committing Violent CRIMES in Russia - Including Rape & MURDER- Women TERRIFIED as Violent EX Partners Return From Ukraine


BBC 23 AUG 2023






Wagner Group, What & Where Are Its Fighters?

Thousands of mercenaries from Russia's Wagner group are now in Belarus, helping to train its soldiers.

Polands' government is sending an additional 10,000 troops to the Belarusian border, saying it needs to guard against incursions by Wagner fighters.
And the BBC has learned that several prisoners recruited by Wagner to fight in Ukraine have been accused of committing serious crimes since returning to Russia.

What is the Wagner Group and How Big is it?

Wagners' leader, Yevgeny Prigozhin says he founded the group in 2014.


A wealthy businessman with a criminal record, Prigozhin is known as "Putin's chef" because he provided catering for the Kremlin.

In 2014, Wagner started backing pro-Russian separatist forces in eastern Ukraine, and is thought to have helped Russia annex Crimea.

Wagner forces are also active in Africa and the Middle East.


It's thought that the group takes its name from the radio call sign of its first field commander - Dmitry Utkin.

Before the war in Ukraine, Wagner had an estimated 5,000 fighters - mostly veterans of Russia's elite regiments and special forces.

However, Prigozhin said last June that its numbers had grown since the start of the Ukraine war to 25,000 fighters.

Although mercenary forces are technically illegal in Russia, Wagner registered as a "private military company" in 2022.



What Did Wagner Do in Ukraine?



Yevgeny Prigozhin with mercenaries in Ukraine.

Wagner was heavily involved in capturing the eastern
Ukrainian city of Bakhmut for Russia.



Ukrainian troops say its fighters were sent into attacks in large numbers over open ground, and many were killed.
File pic of Prigozhin with troops in Bakhmut.

In the weeks before Russia's invasion, it is thought Wagner carried out so-called "false flag" attacks in Ukraine, to give the Kremlin a pretext for invading. These are attacks which one side carries out but blames on its opponent.


How Many Prisoners Did Wagner Recruit?

Prigozhin says Wagner has recruited 49,000 prisoners from Russian jails.

They were given pardons and 100,000 roubles ($1000, £800) each for serving for six months in Ukraine.

Prigozhin says 32,000 prisoners have returned, but independent researchers say that the numbers of survivors could be as low as 20,000.

The BBC has established that 20 former prisoners who fought for Wagner in Ukraine are suspected of having committed serious crimes, including rape and murder, since returning to Russia.


Why Did Wagner Troops Stage a Mutiny?


Prigozhin regularly criticised Russia's defence minister, Sergei Shoigu, and the chief of staff of Russia's armed forces, Valery Gerasimov, over their approach to the war in Ukraine.

He also defied an order from the defence ministry to give it control of the group.

On 24 June, about 5,000 Wagner troops seized control of the southern Russian city of Rostov-on-Don and moved towards Moscow, with the stated aim of removing the military leadership.

However, Prigozhin stopped the advance after negotiations with the Kremlin, which were mediated by Belarusian leader Alexander Lukashenko.

Wagner fighters were told they could join Russia's regular army or go to Belarus, along with Prigozhin.


What Are Wagners' Fighters Doing in Belarus?

A satellite image showing the Tsel military base in Belarus







What Do We Know About Drone Attacks in Russia?

Russia Has Repeatedly Accused Ukraine of Carrying Out Drone Strikes on Its Territory in Recent Months.

A Ukrainian drone hit a railway station in the Kursk region on 21 August, injuring five people, and two other drones were shot down in the Moscow region the next day, according to the Russian authorities.

A few days earlier, a suspected drone attack left one of Russia's flagship Tupolev Tu-22 bombers ablaze at an airbase south of St Petersburg, according to footage verified by the BBC.

Although Ukraine hasn't claimed responsibility for specific drone strikes, President Volodymyr Zelensky has previously said that attacks on Russian territory are an "inevitable, natural and absolutely fair process".





How Many Drone Attacks Have There Been in Russia?

According to Russian media reports monitored by BBC Verify, there have been over 150 suspected aerial drone attacks this year in Russia and in Russian-controlled territory in Ukraine.

There have also been about a dozen sea drone attacks on Russian targets in the Black Sea, including on naval bases and the Crimean bridge.

Map of drone attacks in Russia and Russian-occupied Ukraine between 1 January and 22 August



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Old 31-08-23, 05:09   #35
 
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Movies re: Russia Police Crisis: Catastrophe as Stressed & Demoralised Police Quitting in Droves

Russia-Ukraine: Ukrainian Drones Strike Six Russian Regions Includng Airbase, Destroying Military Aircraft

The drones hit several Russian regions and damaged two military planes, a fuel depot and a microelectronics factory.


BBC 31 AUG 2023











Moscow has vowed Ukraine will "not go unpunished" after drone strikes hit targets in Russia, while Kyiv saw its heaviest bombardment in months.

Meanwhile Ukrainian officials said most missiles and drones were shot down but two people were killed.


Kyiv has not said that it was involved in the latest attacks, but it rarely comments on strikes inside Russia.

In recent weeks, however, Ukraine is believed to have increased its use of explosive drones to attack targets in Russia.

This is all part of its counter-offensive strategy - making it as difficult as possible for Russia to keep its frontline troops supplied, as it pushes on with its full-scale invasion of Ukraine.



At a regional airport in Pskov, a western city that lies some 600km (372 miles) from Ukraine, two military planes were struck and burst into flames according Russian news agencies.

The regional governor, Mikhail Vedernikov, said that he was at the scene and posted a video on Telegram showing a large fire, while an explosion could be heard.

The damaged aircraft - Ilyushin 76 - are long range cargo planes, that are ideal for transporting troops and equipment over long distances. Pskov airport, which was closed to its select few civilian flights on Wednesday, also serves as an important military hub.

They are valuable war assets to Russia, and that makes them targets for Ukraine.

Pskov first came under drone attack this year in May.

There were more attacks further south, with the Russian military saying it shot down Ukrainian drones in the Bryansk, Kaluga, Oryol and Ryazan regions, plus one near the Crimean city of Sevastopol.

Bryansk's regional governor, Aleksandr Bogomaz, said one was intercepted en route to destroying a TV tower, while another hit a microelectronics factory, where components for Russia's weapons systems were made.

A fuel depot in Kaluga was also hit - yet another logistical target involved in keeping Russia's war machine rolling.

Ukraine's plan to fight back against Russia's invasion has been described as "starve, stretch and strike" by the UK's Chief of the Defence Staff, Admiral Sir Tony Radakin.

Kyiv hopes that this strategy of targeting key infrastructure - as well as long-range artillery and missile strikes well behind Russia's front lines in southern Ukraine - will help Ukrainian forces to push though those lines and achieve some measure of success before the end of the year.

In Ukraine's capital Kyiv, meanwhile, night time footage showed balls of fire flying through the night sky and exploding.

General Valeriy Zaluzhnyi, the commander-in-chief of Ukraine's armed forces, said there were 44 Russian strikes in total - 28 missiles and 16 drone attacks. He said all except one drone were intercepted.

The two people who died were security guards in the city's Shevchenkivskiy district, Mayor Vitali Klitschko said.

Cruise missile debris was scattered across a park north-west of the city centre, and authorities were at the scene investigating the wreckage on Wednesday.

The air attacks in Russia are the latest in a spate of strikes deep inside its territory.

Last week, three people were killed in the Belgorod region hours after a drone hit central Moscow, Russian officials said.

And around the same time, a Russian long-range bomber was destroyed in a Ukrainian drone strike at an airbase south of St Petersburg.

President Volodymyr Zelensky has previously said that attacks on Russian territory are an "inevitable, natural and absolutely fair process" as the war with Russia continues.


Map showing the location of the drone strikes ovenright



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Old 04-09-23, 03:24   #36
 
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Movies re: Russia Police Crisis: Catastrophe as Stressed & Demoralised Police Quitting in Droves

Counter-Offensive Troops Punch Through Russia Line -
Ukraine is Now Facing Russian ‘Dragons’ Teeth’ Defenses

Ukraines' Defence Minister Oleksii Reznikov Dismissed -President Zelensky Said It Was Time For New Approaches

BBC 4 SEP 2023










Ukrainian generals claim they have breached Russias' formidable first line of defences in the south, as the counter-offensive launched earlier this summer may be poised to gather pace.

Since June, Kyiv's territorial gains have been very small - but is Ukraine finally at a turning point?


"Yes, it's true," says Yuriy Sak, an advisor to Ukraine's defence minister, when asked if the breach had happened.

"Little by little, I think we're gaining momentum," he said.





"We are now between the first and second defensive lines," one of Ukraine's top generals in the south, Brig Gen Oleksandr Tarnavskiy told Britain's Observer newspaper.

His words echoed those of the White House spokesman John Kirby, who on Friday told reporters in Washington that Ukrainian forces had "achieved some success against that second line."

The focus of Ukraine's counter-offensive effort in recent weeks has been an expanding bridgehead around the tiny village of Robotyne, some 56km (35 miles) south-east of the city of Zaporizhzhia.

Ukrainian forces raised the country's blue and yellow flag over the village more than a week ago, and are now trying to widen the gap to allow larger infantry and armoured units to pass through without coming under Russian fire.

If that can be achieved, there is a chance Ukraine's offensive can gain momentum as it approaches second and third defensive lines, which may not be quite as robust as the first.

Fighting has been reported east of Robotyne, on the edge of the larger village of Verbove, but like everything so far, it's slow, painstaking work.

A glance at the map shows a mass of overlapping, complex Russian defensive lines, complete with minefields, tank traps and trenches. Some of them converge at Verbove.

Without air cover and in the face of sometimes withering Russian artillery fire, small Ukrainian units have been clearing a way through these hazards, preparing the ground for a larger assault.

"When these openings appear, of course, it makes it easier for our forces to advance," Mr Sak said.


The Fog of War

It is hard to assess the significance of the latest claims. Ukrainian officials are extremely tight-lipped when asked for precise details, preferring to allow the fog of war to shroud Kyiv's intentions and extremely reluctant to avoid releasing sensitive information.

It does not help that the forces closest to the fight sometimes give very different accounts of what is happening at the front.

Approached by the BBC on Saturday, Ukraine's 46th Air Assault Brigade said fighting was continuing near Russia's first line of defence, but that "no one has yet managed to go beyond the first line."

This may be less surprising than it sounds. A plethora of units are operating up and down the front, each concentrating on their own narrow section and specific tasks. They do not necessarily know what is going on elsewhere.

One of those units, a volunteer battalion known by its commander's call sign "Skala", told Reuters news agency that its men had broken through Russia's first line on 26 August.

On Sunday, Skala told us his men were still pushing forward.

"Literally, we are moving along the Zaporizhzhia region to the sea," he said in a voice message, without giving further details.

"I don't want to rush ahead, but both we and the General Staff are doing everything for the fastest victory."

Hard as it is to gauge the precise nature and direction of Ukraine's recent gains, it is clear that the Kremlin is alarmed.

It has recently sent elite troops from other parts of the long front line to bolster defences between Robotyne and the key road and railway hub of Tokmak, 21km to the south.

According to the Washington-based Institute for the Study of War (ISW), this is the third time since June.

"The second lateral deployment in the span of a few weeks suggests an increasing Russian concern about the stability of Russian defences," the ISW reported in its assessment on 1 September.

This, Ukrainian experts claim, is part of Kyiv's plan: forcing Moscow to move front line units from one place to another in an effort to wear them down.

"We're trying to involve their reserves and exhaust them," says Serhiy Kuzan, of the Ukrainian Security and Cooperation Centre, a Kyiv think tank with close ties to the military.

The next job, he says, is to exploit any sign of Russian weakness.

"The main thing is to widen this bridgehead," he says. "There won't be any orders to go deeper until we do that."

Despite the apparently glacial progress of the offensive since June, Mr Kuzan says the fundamental objective has not changed: control of the south

Map showing Russian military control in Ukraine


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Old 07-09-23, 06:13   #37
 
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Movies re: Russia Police Crisis: Catastrophe as Stressed & Demoralised Police Quitting in Droves

Ukraine WAR: Kim Jong Un to Visit Putin For Weapons Talks

How Worrying is a Russia-Kim Jong Un Alliance?- He and President Vladimir Putin intend to discuss the possibility of North Korea providing Moscow with weapons to support its war in Ukraine

BBC 7 SEP 2023









North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and Russias' Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu


Where talks would be held is not clear.


The Kremlin spokesman had "nothing to say" on the reports, which were also carried by other US media. There was no immediate comment from North Korea.

Sources told the New York Times that Mr Kim was most likely to travel by armoured train.

The possible meeting comes after the White House said it had new information that arms negotiations between the two countries were "actively advancing".

National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said Russia's Defence Minister, Sergei Shoigu, had tried to "convince Pyongyang to sell artillery ammunition" to Russia during a recent visit to North Korea.

It is thought that Russia might need 122mm and 152mm shells because its stocks are running low, but it is not easy to determine North Korea's full artillery inventory, given its secretive nature.

Weapons on display at the meeting between Mr Kim and Mr Shoigu in July included the Hwasong intercontinental ballistic missile, believed to be the country's first ICBM to use solid propellants.

It was the first time Mr Kim had opened the country's doors to foreign guests since the Covid pandemic.

In July Russian Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu visited North Korea

Mr Putin and Mr Kim have since exchanged letters "pledging to increase their bilateral co-operation", Mr Kirby said.

"We urge the DPRK to cease its arms negotiations with Russia and abide by the public commitments that Pyongyang has made to not provide or sell arms to Russia," he said, using an abbreviation for the North.

He warned the US would take action, including imposing sanctions, if North Korea did supply Russia with weapons.

The two leaders last met in 2019, when Mr Kim arrived by train in Vladivostok, in Russia's far east. He was welcomed by officials with a traditional offering of bread and salt. This was also probably the last time Mr Kim travelled abroad.

There is concern both in Washington and in Seoul about what North Korea would get in return for an arms deal, which may result in increased military co-operation between the two countries in Asia.

On Monday, South Korea's intelligence service briefed that Mr Shoigu had suggested Russia, China and North Korea hold joint naval drills, similar to those carried out by the US, South Korea and Japan.

Another fear is that Russia could supply North Korea with weapons in the future, at a time when Pyongyang most needs them.

More worrying still, Kim Jong Un may ask Mr Putin to provide him with advanced weapons technology or knowledge, to help him make breakthroughs in his nuclear weapons programme.

North Korea has also tested hypersonic missiles, which can fly at several times the speed of sound and at low altitude to escape radar detection, as well as others launched from submarines.


North Korea Missiles





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Old 13-09-23, 06:57   #38
 
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Movies Kim Jong Un Arrives in Russia on Personal Bullet-Proof Train To Meet With PutIn

Kim Jong Un: North Korea Leader Enters Russia to Visit Putin

Kim Jong-un's Russian Gamble..What Kim Jong-un Wants From His Meeting With Vladimir Putin

BBC 13 SEP 2023






Kim Jong-un, the self-styled “supreme leader” of North Korea who had not left the country since before the pandemic, has rolled into Russia on his personal luxury bullet-proof train for a meeting with Russian president Vladimir Putin this morning at a space base in the country’s far-east.



Putin welcomed Kim to Vostochny in the remote eastern region of Amur telling him he was “very glad” to see him. Kim thanked Putin for extending the invite “despite being busy” presumably with the war in Ukraine.

Putin said that Russia would help North Korea build satellites and when asked if he and Kim Jong-un would talk about weapons supplies, he replied that all issues would be on the table including food.

The US is concerned that Kim will provide Putin with “literally millions” of artillery shells, rockets and perhaps thousands of mercenaries that Russia desperately needs to continue the war in Ukraine.
His train is rumoured to include at least 20 bulletproof cars, making it heavier than average trains. It's weight also means the train is very slow - it can only travel at around 59 km/h (37mph).


The White House has said it has new information that arms negotiations between the Russia and North Korea are "actively advancing".

National Security Council spokesman John Kirby earlier said Russia's Defence Minister, Sergei Shoigu, had tried to "convince Pyongyang to sell artillery ammunition" to Russia during a recent visit to North Korea.
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Old 23-09-23, 07:51   #39
 
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Movies Re: BOOM Putin -Ukraines' Massive Naval Victory W.O a Navy-Hits Russias' Naval Fleet

Ukraine-Russia War: Russian Naval HQ Strike Blow to The Dictatorship of Putin - Watch Moment Missile Hits Russias' Black Sea Fleet HQ

Ukraine Has Won a Massive Naval Victory Without Having a Navy


---Russias' Hold Over Sevastopol is Slipping, With Huge Implications For The Black Sea Fleet

BBC 23 SEP 2023






The aftermath of a Ukrainian strike in the Sevastopol area. Ukraine appears to have pushed the Russian navy onto the back foot



While much attention is allotted to the success (or otherwise) of the Ukrainian counter-offensive on land, events in the Black Sea periodically remind us of its strategic importance in this ongoing conflict.

On 13 September, Russia’s repair yard for the Black Sea Fleet, Sergo Ordzhonkidze, came under attack from ten Storm Shadow cruise missiles fired from five Sukhoi Su-24 Fencers. Some were intercepted, but three hit the drydocks there, crippling the warship Minsk and submarine Rostov-on-Don. The Russians retreated a few miles to their backup command post at Verkhnesadovoe which was then hit on 20 September.

Storm Shadow is the British name for the SCALP cruise missile, a French weapon with a British supplied warhead, used by the air forces of both nations and supplied by both nations to Ukraine.

One explanation for why some of the missiles made it through is because Ukrainian special forces and Neptune missiles had destroyed Russian S-400 air defence radars some weeks before.

These are classic multi-domain shaping operations, very well delivered.


Russian Naval HQ Strike





Russias' Black Sea Navy fleet headquarters was hit by a Ukrainian missile in broad daylight on 22 September 2023.



The missile strike that hit a Russian navy headquarters was a “blow to the dictatorship of Putin”, the Ukrainian air force spokesman has said.

Yuriy Ignat confirmed the attack that punched a huge hole in the Black Sea Fleet building in downtown Sevastopol on the occupied Crimean peninsula.

“This is not only a blow to the heart of the naval forces of the Black Sea Fleet, this is a blow to the dictatorship of Putin,” he said. “Everyone will see it. This cannot be hidden.”

Almost eight hours after the strike, Russian authorities were still struggling to put out the fire at the headquarters according to the Moscow-installed governor in Sevastopol. Gas and electricity have been cut and residents have been asked to reduce water consumption until the fire is put out.

“I had wanted a bigger hole [in the building] to be honest,” Ignat added. Russian residents of Crimea had provided Kyiv with information for the strike, he said.

A Ukrainian source told the Telegraph that British designed Storm Shadows, also known as Scalps, were used.





Vladimir Putin plans to throw critics in grim gulag where prisoners' hands are crushed


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Old 27-09-23, 11:44   #40
 
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Movies Re: BOOM Putin -Ukraines' Massive Naval Victory W.O a Navy-Hits Russias' Naval Fleet

Revealed: Europes’ Role in The Making of Russia Killer Drones -Kyiv Says Iranian Drones Used by Russia in Ukraine Have Various European Components

Ukraine Unveils Brand New Stealth Underwater Armed Drone

The Ukrainian Experts Dismantling Bombs For Clues to Putins’ Arms Supply

A century-old institute that used to focus on criminal cases is studying Russias’ weapons, and where parts are coming from

BBC 27 SEP 2023








A Shahed-136 drone is displayed during a rally. Yemeni Houthis Display Iranian Drones and Loitering Missiles



Iranian kamikaze drones used in the latest attacks on Ukrainian cities are filled with European components, according to a secret document sent by Kyiv to its western allies in which it appeals for long-range missiles to attack production sites in Russia, Iran and Syria.

In a 47-page document submitted by Ukraine’s government to the G7 governments in August, it is claimed there were more than 600 raids on cities using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) containing western technology in the previous three months.


New Headache For Putin as Ukraine Unveils Brand New Stealth Underwater Armed Drone


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Old 30-09-23, 23:02   #41
 
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Movies Re: UK Defence Secretary To Send TROOPS To Ukraine to Join NATO Force as Tensions Ris

Grant Shapps to Ramp Up Support For Volodymyr Zelensky - UK Troops Ready to Join NATO Force in Kosovo as Tensions Rise.

Russia Sends Message in New Video of Putin and Warlord

UK to Boost Training For Ukrainian Soldiers and Navy May Help Protect Grain Vessels


British troops will be deployed in Ukraine for the first time under plans being discussed with military chiefs, the new Defence Secretary has disclosed.


BBC 1 OCT 2023





British troops will be deployed in Ukraine for the first time under plans being discussed with military chiefs, the new Defence Secretary has disclosed.



In an interview with The Telegraph, Grant Shapps said that he had held talks with Army leaders about shifting an official British-led training programme “into Ukraine” rather than relying on UK and other Nato members’ bases. He also called on more British defence firms to set up factories in Ukraine.

Following a trip to Kyiv last week, Mr Shapps also revealed that he had talked to Volodymyr Zelensky, the Ukrainian president, about how Britain’s Navy could play a role in defending commercial vessels from Russian attacks in the Black Sea.

Both moves would mark a significant escalation in the UK’s involvement in defending Ukraine against Vladimir Putin’s onslaught.

Putin Appoints ‘Grey Hair’ Warlord to Lead Wagner Mercenaries








Andrei Troshev, a founding member and Executive Director of the Wagner Group, reportedly met Valdimir Putin and Deputy Defence Minister Yunus-Bek Yevkurov on Thursday night.


The meeting underscored the Kremlin’s attempt to show that the state had now gained control over the mercenary group after a failed June mutiny by Wagner chief Yevgeny Prigozhin, who was killed in a plane crash in August.

Just days after the Wagner’s mutiny, Putin offered the mercenaries the opportunity to keep fighting but suggested that commander Andrei Troshev take over from Prigozhin, Russia’s Kommersant newspaper has reported.

Addressing Troshev, Putin said that they had spoken about how “volunteer units that can perform various combat tasks, above all, of course, in the zone of a special military operation.”

“You yourself have been fighting in such a unit for more than a year,” Putin said. “You know what it is, how it is done, you know about the issues that need to be resolved in advance so that the combat work goes in the best and most successful way.”

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the RIA news agency that Troshev worked at the defence ministry. “He now works in the defence ministry.”
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Old 01-10-23, 06:54   #42
 
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Russia Police Crisis: Burned Out, Disappointed and Demoralised. Police Quitting in Droves

Interior Ministry Chief Vladimir Kolokoltsev said the country had a "critical" shortage of police officers, which could affect crime rates.


BBC 1 OCT 2023











In the early hours of 14 January 2020, blood-curdling screams could be heard at an apartment block in the southern Russian region of Krasnodar.

Shocked and scared, a resident called the police to report what sounded like an attack on a woman.

But no-one came.


The screaming continued, alongside loud bangs and cries for help. Six more calls were made to emergency services but still no police officers arrived.

Neighbours, now fearing the worst, decided to take matters into their own hands and broke into the apartment by smashing down the door.

But it was too late. The screaming had stopped. The woman was dead.


Police Fail to Answer Calls





Vera Pekhteleva had been stabbed multiple times, beaten and strangled with an iron cord by her ex-boyfriend in an attack that lasted three-and-a-half hours.


Vera Pekhteleva was tortured before being murdered by her ex-boyfriend - and police failed to show up



At the time, police said there were no officers or patrol cars in the area to attend. But later, five officers were found guilty of causing death by negligence and were sentenced to 18 months in jail, suspended for two years.

The court said the sentences, which were seen by many as lenient, were appropriate because officer shortages were a problem for "the whole force".

Russia has one of the largest police forces in the world, employing over 900,000 officers to serve a population of 146 million, according to the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs. It has nearly 630 officers per 100,000 people - more than double the US or the UK.

But in August, Interior Ministry Chief Vladimir Kolokoltsev said the country had a "critical" shortage of police officers, which could affect crime rates.

How can that be the case, given the sheer number of officers?


Poor Wages, Stress and Corruption


Russias' sprawling geography and a lack of back-office support staff are partly to blame. But recent problems stem from a massive drop in police numbers - and many of those leaving are experienced officers.





Many former Russian police officers have told the BBC they are leaving the force and opting for less stressful jobs which are better paid.



"They haven't adjusted the salary at all," a former officer from Rostov, in southwest Russia, said. "After inflation and the new prices, it's not enough." He quit to become a taxi driver.

His friend, who was also a police officer, is now a courier.

Both of them earn twice as much as they did as police officers.

"I reached the rank of major (the equivalent to a sergeant in the UK). But still a person working at a supermarket earned more than me - hardly dangerous work. Only an idiot would join the police now," the former officer from Rostov said.

The BBC has found that overstretched police forces are now refusing to open cases, even after a statement has been provided.

"Everyone gets 10 days to examine statements, whether there are five or 50, so obviously, the quality of work deteriorates," argues one detective from the Siberian region of Russia.

"If there's a string of 10 or so things they must do - call on neighbours, cross-examine witnesses, visit the crime-scene - they'll just do one or two, and write down that it 'wasn't possible' to complete the others.

"Then they refuse to open charges - so there will be no investigation," he says.

Many former Russian police officers told the BBC they are quitting for less stressful jobs that are better paid

As the number of officers drops, the pressures on those who remain increase.

Former officers have told the BBC this is leading to corruption.

"Officers are beating confessions out of people, inflating arrest quotas, we're seeing this all the time," says a police major from the Russian city of Tomsk.

"It's only going to get worse. There will be falsification of evidence, targeted beatings, there just isn't going to be time to investigate anything properly.



"You've got a lead and you need to chase it? Much simpler to drag the first suspect back to the station and beat him up, so he takes the blame."

Some officers are getting locked up for their actions - further thinning the force.

This happened to Sergei, a former police officer of six years, jailed for beating a drug dealer. Sergei says he felt pressure to arrest the dealer and only hit him when he was about to eat his drugs to conceal the evidence.

He also tells the BBC that police resources were so thin he had to pay for work essentials himself. "I was using my own car, I bought my own paper, cartridges and printer; my own computer, my desk, my chair, my petrol… I laid my own floor tiles [in the office], repaired everything."

A former officer from central Russia says that vacant positions have gone unfilled for a long time. "There's been a shortage for ages. I started in 2015, and only two people have joined our team in the last eight years, while 15 have left."

And according to several BBC sources, including two sergeants and one major, the Interior Ministry carried out a purge of officers who were linked to the opposition politician, Alexei Navalny, who has been held in a remote penal colony since 2021.

Long-serving, experienced officers were fired in this purge. One source said the Moscow Federal Security Service compiled a list of Navalny supporters based on a hacked database of email addresses.


The Impact of The War in Ukraine


The number of police officers in Russia was declining before the start of the war in Ukraine.

Initially, the war convinced some officers to stay in the force.

Russian police officers are exempt from being called up for military duty, so some officers who were on the verge of resigning when Russia invaded Ukraine told us they kept their jobs to avoid fighting.



"Either you sat tight, or you left and got drafted," explains one officer from Moscow. "I know there were managers who made a list of everyone who'd threatened to quit and passed it straight to the [army] recruiters. Everyone was pretty scared."

But as the war rumbles on, police numbers are dwindling. The force cannot fill existing gaps - let alone recruit the 40,000 extra personnel that the Interior Ministry says is needed in Donetsk and Luhansk, areas of Ukraine that Russia partly occupies.

Putin claimed a win after holding so-called referendums in the Russian-held regions of Ukraine in September 2022. But the polls were denounced as a sham by Ukraine's government and its allies.





Russian police officers are not allowed to have an opinion about the war



Russia predicts it will need another 42,000 officers by 2026 if it occupies further territories.

For serving police officers, having an opinion about the war is simply not allowed. They are not even allowed to call it a war.

"Officers must keep their mouths shut," one detective says. "We can't have personal views about the 'special military operation' - or they'll fire us."

The BBC has also been told officers are burning out because of extra paperwork brought on by the war.

Interior Ministry officials from the three Russian cities of Tomsk, Yekaterinburg and Yaroslavl claim they now spend most of their time investigating and revising "endless charges against people discrediting the army".

"People are always looking for an excuse to denounce someone," a former major from Tomsk says.

"There's nobody around... Everyone's gone to check on some grandma who saw a curtain that looked like the Ukrainian flag.

"I see where we're heading," he says. "There's already an emphasis on crimes against the state. Going forward, more cases will fall into this category," he predicts.

"As for real problems affecting ordinary people? Kidnap, robbery, rape, murder… there won't be time to investigate."
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Old 02-10-23, 11:57   #43
 
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Movies re: Desperate Putins' Struggle to Prop Up Ruble & China is Russias' Lifeline to Fund WAR

Moment Ukrainian Jet Ski Commandos Storm Crimea in Mission SAS Called Impossible

In the dead of night on August 24, around 20 soldiers loaded up with guns, grenades and rockets to embark on a daring mission inside occupied Crimea


BBC 2 OCT 2023







The view from one of the ships during the mission






The moment Ukrainian jet ski commandos launched a raid on a Russian electronic warfare station in Crimea has been caught on camera.



In the dead of night on August 24, around 20 soldiers loaded up with guns, grenades and rockets to embark on a daring mission inside occupied Crimea, which Russia has spent years turning into a fortress. They fled 125 miles across the sea on jet skis, with each one carrying two Ukrainian frogmen.

Levan, the second in command of the elite special forces regiment of the Timur group, said that he spent two weeks practising the journey on a jet ski before their mission. The aim of the high-risk assault was to destroy a military headquarters.

"Our first target was an electronic warfare station so powerful not even a compass could work within 20 miles of the shore", Borghese, the battalion commander who coordinated the mission on the day, told The Times.

Footage shows the group from the Brotherhood Battalion revving up their jet skis before setting out across the water on an almost impossible mission they didn't believe they would survive. While the unit approached the peninsula, five Ukrainian support ships fired at Russian positions as a diversion tactic. When their boots hit the ground, they were the first Ukrainian troops to set foot on Russian-occupied Crimea in almost a decade.

Ukraine's spy chief Kyrylo Budanov also tasked the men to raise a Ukrainian flag on the peninsula for the first time in nearly a decade, the outlet reported. As the jet-ski men got closer to the base housing the electronic warfare station, their goal was to place explosives, depart and detonate. But as they got within 200 metres of their target one of the teams was spotted. A Russian machine gunner opened up in their direction, prompting a 30-minute exchange of fire.

The team had to abandon their original plan and instead destroy the control centre from a distance with anti-tank weapons, the battalion's commander, Borghese, told The Times. They then made a terrifying scramble back to their jet skis, to reach their evacuation ship. By this point, Borghese said, "[they] were really chasing us hard. Four enemy boats came out to intercept us, blocking the retreat to our coastline."

Jet skis fled across the sea to reach occupied Crimea for the attack

The battle raged for hours, with enemy aircraft circling for around five hours. In a spectacular feat, Ukraine lost no men and a few weeks later they managed to obliterate Putin's Black Sea fleet headquarters.

Borghese said: "Our guys are very faithful and the whole operation went like a miracle. There were clouds at dawn, so enemy aviation and their drones couldn’t work well. When we were halfway home, the sun came out and we had good weather." Among those said to have been surprised by the raid's success are British SAS troops and intelligence officers who are believed to be operating on the ground in Ukraine, helping train the country's forces and assisting with planning and strategy.

According to a commander known just as Levan, the Allies initially advised against the jet ski raid, believing that the watercraft would be unable to travel the distance required. During a month of training, they were only able to test the craft on journeys up to 87 miles. He said: "At sea, they know and understand a lot, but even for our British partners this looked like an almost impossible task. Neither the Americans nor the Brits gave us much chance of success."

In a statement after the attack, they claimed it showed their soldiers setting foot in occupied Crimea for the first time in almost a decade, following its 2014 annexation by Russia. It said:

"Our state flag flew again in the Ukrainian Crimea,' the ministry claimed after a 'special operation' in which troops had 'engaged in combat."
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Old 05-10-23, 10:03   #44
 
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Movies Re: US Sends Ukraine Confiscated Ammunition From Iran + Ukraines NEW Invisibility Tec

US Sends Confiscated Ammunition From Iran, to Ukraine

First Time Washington Has Transferred Weapons Seized From Other Countries Since Putin Invaded

BBC 5 OCT 2023





Ukraines' 18th Army Aviation Brigade resupplying their helicopters

The US has sent Ukraine more than a million rounds of ammunition seized from Iran, the US military said on Wednesday.





It is believed this is the first time that Washington has transferred weapons confiscated from another country to Ukraine since the country was invaded by Russia in February last year.

The move came days after Congress axed support for Ukraine from the funding deal cobbled together to avoid a government shutdown.

Iran has been supplying Moscow with drones, which have been used against civilian and military targets in Ukraine.

US naval forces have for years been intercepting fishing vessels suspected of carrying Iranian weapons destined for Yemen.


US Navy Seizures

The US Central Command said a navy ship seized the 1.1 million rounds from a vessel that was being used by Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps to arm Houthi rebels in Yemen’s civil war in defiance of a UN arms embargo.

The 7.62mm ammunition works with the Soviet-era Kalashnikov assault rifles still being used by many Ukrainian military units.

Earlier this week, US president Joe Biden pleaded with Congress to approve more funds for Kyiv, warning that Ukrainians would die “needlessy” if support to the country was cut off.

He had asked for $24 billion (£19.8bn) to support the next tranche of funding. But Congress refused to back even a dramatically reduced package of $6bn. The US has provided more than $113bn to support Ukraine’s resistance since February last year.

Support has included more than 300 million rounds of ammunition and grenades.

But continuing support for Ukraine could prove difficult, with many Republicans, who now have a narrow majority in the House of Representatives, opposing further aid.
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Old 05-10-23, 22:16   #45
 
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Movies re: Desperate Putins' Struggle to Prop Up Ruble & China is Russias' Lifeline to Fund WAR

Ukraines' Worst Single Loss of Life in a Year - Missile Strike Destroys ENTIRE Village in Ukraine, Leaving at Least 51 Dead

Germany Refusing to Send Taurus Missiles to Ukraine, Germanys’ Equivalent of Britains’ Storm Shadows, For Fear of Crimea Bridge Attack


BBC 6 OCT 2023






A Russian strike in the north-eastern Ukraine village of Hroza has killed at least 51 people, officials say. According to reports, villagers from Hroza had gathered in a local cafe for a wake following the death of a resident.

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky accused Russia of "genocidal aggression".



Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelensky visited the front line in the north-east only this week, because this region has been the focus of Russia's military offensive ever since the summer. Last month, Russia said it had captured strategic heights near Kupyansk, just 30km (18 miles) to the east of Hroza. There is no obvious reason why such a small village would come under attack, but it is within reach of that front line.

Ukraine recaptured Kupyansk and areas around it last autumn and Russian forces have spent the past few months trying to re-occupy it. Six weeks ago Ukraine ordered civilians to be evacuated from Kupyansk because of Russian shelling.


Mr Zelensky said on Tuesday that the front line between Kupyansk and Lyman further south was "one of the hottest areas" of the war. The latest civilian deaths are an indication of that.
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Old 11-10-23, 09:04   #46
 
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Movies re: Desperate Putins' Struggle to Prop Up Ruble & China is Russias' Lifeline to Fund WAR

World Hurtles Towards Nuclear War as Vladimir Putin Set to Rip Up Key Treaty in Days

Putin Escalates Nuclear Rhetoric With Threat to Resume Testing to Highlight New Missile Capabilities and Abandon Test Ban Treaty


BBC 11 OCT 2023










Vladimir Putin suggested he will revoke a nuclear treaty sending tensions rising around the world with Russia poised to test a weapon of mass destruction.

Vladimir Putins’ government is set to rip up a key treaty in a move sure to escalate nuclear tensions with the West.



The Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organisation verifies that nuclear-armed nations are adhering to a ban on testing weapons of mass destruction.

It has been ratified by Russia but as of yesterday lawmakers in Moscow were given 10 days to find the best way to revoke the treaty.

In a move that sent tensions soaring, Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov claimed earlier that the United States was planning to test nuclear weapons in the Nevada desert.


Ryabkov added that Russia’s foreign ministry was drafting a bill which would revoke the treaty.

The news comes amid increasingly hostile nuclear rhetoric from Russian propagandists and politicians as Moscow’s forces bog down in Ukraine.

Last month, former Russian President and close Putin ally Dmitri Medvedev threatened direct conflict with NATO which he predicted would end in nuclear war.



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Old 15-10-23, 01:50   #47
 
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Movies re: Desperate Putins' Struggle to Prop Up Ruble & China is Russias' Lifeline to Fund WAR

Cripple Putins’ War Machine by Denying Russia Crucial Weapon Components, West Urged

Denying Russia Access to CNC Machines Will Slow Production and Cause Weapons to Malfunction


BBC 15 OCT 2023








Western nations have been told they can “cripple Putins’ war machine” by denying Russia access to technology crucial to enabling the mass production of weapons.

Ms Yurchenko, International Relations and Foreign Policy Expert, Senior Analyst at the Economic Security Council of Ukraine, said many CNC machines were manufactured in western countries, including Germany, Austria and Switzerland.





Olena Yurchenko, said Russia relies on computer numerical control (CNC) to manufacture missiles, aircraft parts, radar technology and submarines. The automated robotic machines are capable of performing operations according to a given program without direct human intervention, making

She told Express.co.uk: “According to Russian manufacturers, it is the Russian military-industrial complex enterprises that account for at least 80 percent of the orders they receive.

“Thus, the military industry is perhaps the main consumer of CNC machines.”

Putin’s Russia was reliant upon the CNC machine tools and their components and spare parts primarily for the military production, Ms Yurchenko explained.

She added: “These CNC machines process various materials, but mainly metal, with precision, accuracy and efficiency no other means can provide.

“Reliance comes from the exorbitant demand from the military (eg more and more weapons are needed), and the fact Russians cannot produce these CNCs themselves, because it requires huge finances, resources and experience.








“All the components of CNC machines are produced abroad - bearings, CNC software itself, servoconverters, spindles etc.”


MORE: Putin dealt crushing blow as 100,000 soldiers deemed to be ‘unfit to fight’



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Old 17-10-23, 03:59   #48
 
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Movies Re: Desperate Putins' Struggle to Prop Up Ruble & China is Russias' Lifeline to Fund

Putin Makes Rare Admission of Struggle After New Attempt to Prop Up The Ruble

China is Russias' ONLY Lifeline as Desperate Putin Relies on Xi to Fund War in Ukraine - BUT Putin and Xi’s Bond Has a Weakness

Desperate Putin to Experience Severe Limitations This Winter as Ukraine Achieves Success


BBC 17 OCT 2023







HONG KONG, 17 Oct - Russian President Vladimir Putins’ expected meeting this week in Beijing with his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping on the sidelines of the Belt and Road Forum will underscore a strengthening bilateral bond and increasing erosion of Moscows’ economic sovereignty.









Following their "no-limits" partnership outlined ahead of Russias’ invasion of Ukraine, the People’s Republic has been gorging on cheap Urals crude and sending more exports to its sanctions-hit neighbour. The $190 billion two-way trade relationship is up 29% since 2021, and has roughly doubled since Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014.

Moscow has few places to turn. The European Union’s decision in May 2022 to drastically reduce gas imports amounting to 155 billion cubic metres annually from Russia is depriving it of a major client. Europe has also stopped purchasing coal, seaborne crude and refined petroleum products worth nearly $80 billion a year, while also joining a U.S.-led price cap initiative that prevents operators from transporting Russian oil above a set price.


It was natural for the People’s Republic to step up. The country has bought Urals crude at a discount of between 10% and 13% against the price of Brent, the global benchmark for oil. Such discounts have allowed Beijing to save at least $10 billion on its energy bill from crude alone in 2022 and 2023, according to Bank of France estimates, easing some of the growing pressure on the yuan.






China has emerged as the top buyer of Russias’ crude oil and coal, as well as the second-largest buyer of liquefied natural gas and oil products from Russia, an analysis by the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air shows.







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Old 18-10-23, 03:38   #49
 
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Movies Re: Desperate Putins' Struggle to Prop Up Ruble & China is Russias' Lifeline to Fund

North Koreas' Orient Express Sending Munitions to Russia 'at Scale’

The report says the munitions are regularly loaded on to two Russian ships, the Angara and Maria.


BBC 18 OCT 2023







Kim Jong-un is supplying Vladimir Putin with munitions, warns the report



North Korea is supplying munitions to Russia “at scale” via a so-called “Orient Express”, a new report has warned.

James Byrne, director of RUSI’s Open Source Intelligence Analysis group which undertook the analysis, warned the decision by Kim Jong-un’s regime will have “profound consequences”.

RUSI’s investigation is published just days after US National Security Council spokesman John Kirby accused Pyongyang of supplying up to 1,000 containers of "equipment and munitions" to Moscow in "recent weeks".

The final destination of the shipments appeared to be a munitions depot in the Russian town of Tikhoretsk, roughly 200 kilometres from the Ukrainian border.

From here, North Korean weapons and munitions can be shipped to logistics depots on the border of Ukraine for distribution to front line units, the report explained.

It added: “The supply will bolster Russia’s war effort, posing problems for Ukraine and its allies who may need to further increase their support to keep pace with this new reality.

“It also creates a new source of revenue for Pyongyang, which has traditionally used the proceeds of arms sales to develop its own nuclear and ballistic missile programme in violation of UN sanctions.”


The RUSI report, published yesterday, says in recent months, two In recent months, two Russian ships - the Angara and Maria - had multiple trips between the Russian port of Dunai and the North Korean port of Rajin.

Both vessels are owned and operated by companies with links to Russia’s military logistics networks.



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Old 20-10-23, 14:54   #50
 
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Movies re: Putin Invites HAMAS to Moscow & Warns of WW3 & Nuclear Clash

Putin Threatens West With Deadly Meteorite Hypersonic Missile as It's Ready For Combat

The new deadly hypersonic missiles can travel at 27 times the speed of sound.


BBC 20 OCT 2023







Vladimir Putin has threatened the West with his most deadly “meteorite” hypersonic missile Avangard as it has been shown being readied for combat.



The weapon - delivered to targets at 27 times the speed of sound - is seen in new footage installed in an underground launch silo in Russia’s Orenburg region.

The 20,000mph missile with a hypersonic glide vehicle is fired outside the earth’s atmosphere before striking any target in the world in less than 30 minutes, according to Moscow.








Putin - just back from a rare foreign trip to China - claims the West has no means to stop Avangard.

He has previously claimed the Avangard strikes “like a meteorite” and is “invincible” - unstoppable by any defence system.



MORE: US sends stark warning to Putin with fresh nuclear weapons test







Crucial undersea cables 'sabotaged' as military and coast guard on standby

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