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War Games: Russia Takes Ukraine, China Takes Taiwan. US Response?


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Russian troops began to return to their permanent locations after the maneuvers.

Maria Zakharova: February 15 will go down in history as the day of the failure of Western propaganda of the war

Edited by SergUpstart
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5 hours ago, SergUpstart said:

Russian troops began to return to their permanent locations after the maneuvers.

Maria Zakharova: February 15 will go down in history as the day of the failure of Western propaganda of the war

Out of the 130,000+ troops Russia has amassed along the Ukraine border, Russia has CLAIMED they're going to pull back about 10K of them. They have not yet done so, so you (or at least Maria Z, the Director of the Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation... obviously not an objective 3rd party commenter) seem to be putting proverbial carts before obvious war horses.

Meanwhile, the US is relocating its Ukraine embassy Kyiv to the western city of Lviv, a city not stuck in the middle of the country and located roughly 50 miles from Ukraine's western border with Poland, "out of concern for the safety of the staff."

We also know through  hundreds of crowdsourced videos being shared across platforms that there are literally TONS of Russian military equipment and units still moving TOWARD the Ukrainian border. Things like Russian citizens sharing videos of tanks rolling through their local roads and highways.

More Americans are also right now being deployed to Europe in response. 

Edited by iNow
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On 2/15/2022 at 2:31 AM, SergUpstart said:

Russian troops began to return to their permanent locations after the maneuvers.

Maria Zakharova: February 15 will go down in history as the day of the failure of Western propaganda of the war

Shocker. This was false. Since making this assertion, Russia has actually brought in 7,000 MORE troops near Ukraine bringing the total well over 150,000, added armored vehicles, helicopters, and field hospitals. 

Satellite imagery also confirms Russia has established a new military pontoon bridge over the Pripyat River in Belarus, less than 4 miles from the Ukraine border.

image.thumb.jpeg.49d9544af026aa2df196f8bad3a26d5c.jpeg

Edited by iNow
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From what Blinken was saying at the UN,  the intel he was reporting, it sounds like the Kremlin is busily constructing pretexts.  And lying their pants off.

I found the Russian pearl-clutching over ours and NATO's defensive buildup especially ludicrous.  

The whole thing is insane.   You'd think Vlad and his oligarch buddies would at least have some self-interest in not screwing up the global economy and their access to offshore banking, property assets, etc.  

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China "expressed support for Argentina's demands for full sovereignty over the Malvinas Islands" (the Argentine name of the archipelago). This statement was made public on Sunday, February 6, after the meeting of the heads of China and Argentina Xi Jinping and Alberto Fernandez during the Olympics in Beijing. In response, Argentina supported China's right to join Taiwan. This is reported by the Associated Press.

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5 hours ago, SergUpstart said:

China "expressed support for Argentina's demands for full sovereignty over the Malvinas Islands" (the Argentine name of the archipelago). This statement was made public on Sunday, February 6, after the meeting of the heads of China and Argentina Xi Jinping and Alberto Fernandez during the Olympics in Beijing. In response, Argentina supported China's right to join Taiwan. This is reported by the Associated Press.

I wonder how the inhabitants of the Falklands, mostly of British descent, feel about that?

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On 2/17/2022 at 2:40 PM, iNow said:

Shocker. This was false. Since making this assertion, Russia has actually brought in 7,000 MORE troops near Ukraine bringing the total well over 150,000, added armored vehicles, helicopters, and field hospitals. 

Satellite imagery also confirms Russia has established a new military pontoon bridge over the Pripyat River in Belarus, less than 4 miles from the Ukraine border.

The head of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic Denis Pushilin, in an address to the residents of the DPR, said that due to the dangerous situation in the Donbass, the departure of the population to Russia has been organized since February 18. He stressed that places of reception and accommodation of citizens are already ready in the Rostov region.

There will be no war. It is cheaper to take the population of Donetsk and Lugansk to Russia than to arrange a big war.

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1 hour ago, SergUpstart said:

There will be no war.

Oh, phew. What a relief. I guess this thread can be closed then, but before that happens, will you please also share with me next week's lotto numbers and who will win the Indy 500 in 2026 so I may place a handsome bet?

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MOSCOW, Feb 18 (Reuters) - A Russian-backed separatist leader in eastern Ukraine announced the evacuation of his breakaway region's residents to southeast Russia on Friday after an increase in shelling.

Announcing the move on social media, Denis Pushilin, head of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, said Russia had agreed to provide accommodation for people leaving and that women, children and the elderly should be prioritised.

"As of today, Feb. 18, a mass centralised evacuation of the population to the Russian Federation has been organised," Pushilin said. "Women, children and the elderly are to be evacuated first," he said.

Washington and its allies have raised fears that the upsurge in violence in the region could form part of a Russian pretext to invade Ukraine. Tensions are already high over a Russian military buildup to the north, east and south of Ukraine.

Russia, which denies planning to attack, voiced alarm earlier on Friday over a sharp increase in shelling in the region known as the Donbass.

Several hundred thousand people plan to leave the Donetsk People's Republic to Russia's region of Rostov, the Interfax news agency cited a source in the self-declared republic's parliament as saying.

 

Nahhh, there's not gonna be any war.  Just your ordinary routine evacuation of civilians before someone does a little light bombing the shit out of the place.

2 hours ago, SergUpstart said:

 

There will be no war. It is cheaper to take the population of Donetsk and Lugansk to Russia than to arrange a big war.

The population of 4.2 million people?  Uh huh.

Edited by TheVat
Correct figure
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23 hours ago, TheVat said:

From what Blinken was saying at the UN,  the intel he was reporting, it sounds like the Kremlin is busily constructing pretexts.  And lying their pants off.

I found the Russian pearl-clutching over ours and NATO's defensive buildup especially ludicrous.  

The whole thing is insane.   You'd think Vlad and his oligarch buddies would at least have some self-interest in not screwing up the global economy and their access to offshore banking, property assets, etc.  

Would it appear so insane if the real reason is rhat Putin is having serious problems domestically that we aren't seeing? Does he see the writing on the wall?

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7 minutes ago, StringJunky said:

Would it appear so insane if the real reason is rhat Putin is having serious problems domestically that we aren't seeing? Does he see the writing on the wall?

It's hard to rule out a "Wag the Dog" scenario.  Maybe.  He could tell Russia, "Look over here!  I'm rescuing our ethnic Russian brothers and sisters who are under the oppressor's thumb in Donbass!". Or maybe he's after the mineral wealth.  

It's always worth asking what we aren't seeing, where Russia is concerned.  

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1 hour ago, TheVat said:

It's hard to rule out a "Wag the Dog" scenario.  Maybe.  He could tell Russia, "Look over here!  I'm rescuing our ethnic Russian brothers and sisters who are under the oppressor's thumb in Donbass!". Or maybe he's after the mineral wealth.  

It's always worth asking what we aren't seeing, where Russia is concerned.  

Yes, it is not as it appears. It's clear what Biden is doing, although the Russians are trying to make it look like hysteria on NATO's part, by giving a very public running commentary based on satellite information. Satellite surveillance is really coming of age. It's more like watching a chess game when we can see the hardware move about. I imagine both sides survellance resolution is much better than we the public can see.

Edited by StringJunky
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3 hours ago, iNow said:

I guess this thread can be closed then, but before that happens, will you please also share with me next week's lotto numbers and who will win the Indy 500 in 2026 so I may place a handsome bet?

It is better to open long positions in gold, silver and platinum

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From the Washington Post

A State Department spokesperson said Friday’s evacuation and apparent bombing in Donetsk represented the kind of staged operation that officials have said could precede a Russian attack.

“This type of false-flag operation is exactly what Secretary Blinken highlighted in his remarks” at the U.N., the spokesperson said in a statement, which was circulated on the condition of anonymity under ground rules set by the Biden administration. “Announcements like these are further attempts to obscure through lies and disinformation that Russia is the aggressor in this conflict.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/02/18/ukraine-russia-donetsk-evacuations/

 

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1 hour ago, TheVat said:

From the Washington Post

A State Department spokesperson said Friday’s evacuation and apparent bombing in Donetsk represented the kind of staged operation that officials have said could precede a Russian attack.

“This type of false-flag operation is exactly what Secretary Blinken highlighted in his remarks” at the U.N., the spokesperson said in a statement, which was circulated on the condition of anonymity under ground rules set by the Biden administration. “Announcements like these are further attempts to obscure through lies and disinformation that Russia is the aggressor in this conflict.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/02/18/ukraine-russia-donetsk-evacuations/

 

Quite  an eye opener

"Ministry of Truth" indeed.

 

Did Lewis Carol inspire Orwell or was he just reading from the  Totalitarian  playbook?

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From Axios:

 

In a likely prelude to war, Vladimir Putin announced at the end of a combative, hourlong address that he will recognize two breakaway "republics" in eastern Ukraine as independent.

  • Why it matters: The separatists don't hold all the territory they claim. So recognition could be a de facto declaration of war by Putin, Axios World author Dave Lawler writes.

⚡ The White House immediately announced new sanctions on the Russian-backed republics.

The separatists declared independence in 2014 and have waged a low-scale war against Ukrainian forces since then, with military backing from Moscow.

  • Recognizing the two breakaway regions "would be a sort of attack without weapons," France's Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian told a parliamentary hearing earlier Monday.

👀 What we're watching: Analysts expect Russian recognition of the separatist republics to be followed by deployment of "peacekeeper" forces.

Between the lines: Putin's move could be a sign that his immediate military focus is on the eastern Donbas region — not the capital, Kyiv.

  • Michael Kofman, a CNA expert on the Russian military, contends it's more likely the first step in a broader military operation.

Secretary of State Tony Blinken has said such recognition would "call into further question Russia’s stated commitment to ... diplomacy."

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It's war, and Biden should stop with the half-assed bit about sanctioning the Donbas breakaways.  Sanction the damned Russians.  As in right fecking now.  Did Joe not listen to Vladdy's hour-long speech/rant today?  What part of "Ukraine is a state we created and a part of Russia" did you not follow, Joe?  

 

Kind of a blue moon day when I find myself agreeing with Lindsey Graham!

Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) Tweeted:
His decision should immediately be met with forceful sanctions to destroy the ruble and crush the Russian oil and gas sector. https://twitter.com/LindseyGrahamSC/status/1495853103219986434?s=20&t=UUYxSfnS7NHUl8ZiLXh2uQ

 

Edited by TheVat
Btfsplk
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3 minutes ago, TheVat said:

It's war, and Biden should stop with the half-assed bit about sanctioning the Donbas breakaways.  Sanction the damned Russians.  Did Joe not listen to Vladdy's hour-long speech/rant today?  What part of "Ukraine is a state we created and a part of Russia" did you not follow, Joe?  

 

Kind of a blue moon day when I find myself agreeing with Lindsey Graham!

Well, even former GWBush Sec.State Condie Rice applauded the Biden team for how expertly they’ve been playing this bad hand they’ve been dealt. 

Delay on O&G sanctions is almost certainly so they don’t blow their entire wad when Putin still remains not fully committed. One of those “don’t shoot til you can see the whites of their eyes” situations. 

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Well, one hopes.  Though when Putin orders Russian troops to go in and "maintain the peace," my universal translator shows that as "I am invading Ukraine now!" i.e. eye whites due imminently.   

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29 minutes ago, TheVat said:

Well, one hopes.  Though when Putin orders Russian troops to go in and "maintain the peace," my universal translator shows that as "I am invading Ukraine now!" i.e. eye whites due imminently.   

I hope your universal translator  has double speak installed ,(apparently Ukraine is part of Russia)

Has Putin a chance of turning Ukraine into a satellite state of Russia in the immediate or medium  term?

 

 

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2 hours ago, TheVat said:

It's war, and Biden should stop with the half-assed bit about sanctioning the Donbas breakaways.  Sanction the damned Russians.  As in right fecking now.  Did Joe not listen to Vladdy's hour-long speech/rant today?  What part of "Ukraine is a state we created and a part of Russia" did you not follow, Joe?  

 

Kind of a blue moon day when I find myself agreeing with Lindsey Graham!

Lindsey Graham (@LindseyGrahamSC) Tweeted:
His decision should immediately be met with forceful sanctions to destroy the ruble and crush the Russian oil and gas sector. https://twitter.com/LindseyGrahamSC/status/1495853103219986434?s=20&t=UUYxSfnS7NHUl8ZiLXh2uQ

 

I'm not sure that sanctioning Russia now instead of later is going to have the effect you think it will.

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1 hour ago, geordief said:

Has Putin a chance of turning Ukraine into a satellite state of Russia in the immediate or medium  term?

If his troops take Kiev, which they absolutely can do probably within less than a day or 2 given their size and capabilities and backend support from cyber teams, then Ukraine for all intents and purposes will be absorbed as part of Russia effective immediately. 

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I've been following this conflict for several months now, before it became a headline crisis.  While I have believed from the beginning that a real conflict was probably going to materialize, I also do not believe that seizing the entirety of Ukraine is Putin's current goal. 

The conflict with Ukraine looks like classic incrementalism - or "salami tactics", taking territory slice by slice.  Now that these two separatist areas (Luhansk and Donetsk) have been annexed, I think we will see no further advances by Russian forces at this time. 

Further, I believe that the US knows this and has essentially agreed with Russia since their bilateral talks in January (which didn't include Ukraine) that this annexation would be tolerated in order to avoid a full scale war.  Of course, this would never be officially stated.  

I believe the Russian forces stationed in Belarus, ominously north of Kiev, are there to merely intimidate Ukraine and NATO into not interfering while this annexation takes place.  They are the "backup" in case Ukraine or NATO tries to stop the seizure of this eastern territory; they're not there with the primary goal of invading the entire country.

It's a classic strategy of "scare you with a bigger threat so you accept a smaller sacrifice".

In the coming weeks I expect we'll see the Russian "peacekeepers" control this section of territory but not advance any further.  This will allow Russia to officially link up the separatist areas with Crimea (previously seized in 2014)  and continue their expansion into the Black Sea.  Although the new independent republics will never be officially recognized, Ukrainian forces will pull back and respect this new de facto boundary.

crimea-1024x768.thumb.jpg.0ba6d2b956674d1f8a6e8ad406d16f11.jpg

(Red lines denote where Russian peacekeepers will actually be stationed)

Russia's stategy to recognize two "independent states": Dontesk People's Republic and Luhansk People's Republic rather than subsume these territories into Russia mirrors the annexation of other friendly satellite states such as South Ossetia (2008) and Abkhazia, both of which Russia took from Georgia.  Over the long term this approach counters the "Soviet Sphere" narrative while accomplishing the exact same objectives.

Edited by Alex_Krycek
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9 hours ago, iNow said:

If his troops take Kiev, which they absolutely can do probably within less than a day or 2 given their size and capabilities and backend support from cyber teams, then Ukraine for all intents and purposes will be absorbed as part of Russia effective immediately. 

I saw a poll that suggested 1/3 of Ukrainians would violently resist Russian occupation. According to the US military one counter insurgent is required per 20 resisting civilians, meaning Russia would need ~325,000 soldiers in Ukraine. Even Russia cannot afford that level of attrition for any extended period of time.

A much more likely goal would be to force the federation of Ukraine so as to be better able to influence the separate federations. Any full scale invasion would be an attempted lightning strike to take the capital, then sue for peace under these terms. However, this would cost Russia dearly, economically and politically (i.e Finland and Sweden would more likely want to join NATO, and many ex-Soviet countries would become even more hostile to Russia).

I wonder if Germany will reconsider their gas hungry energy policy in the face of this crisis. 

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  • Jalopy changed the title to Will Russia use nuclear weapons?

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