Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia

Russia / Strategy Media Update – 21 July 2017

Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

Apologies for the 24 hour delay, I was traveling.

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Another unusually busy day with approx 200 reports in MSM, much of it very interesting reading, especially Russia’s dive further into the abyss.

Gen Hodges comments on Zapad-2017 as a Trojan Horse. President of Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaitė would like to see MIM-104 Patriot in Lithuania, it would appear on a permanent basis. Trenin expounds on Russian strategy for Eurasia, very optimistically. Russia brags about AI in autonomous missiles. Monument war continues.

Free Russia Forum spells out measures needed for Russian to “rejoin the civilized world”. Stalin promotion continues. Putin pours high octane accelerant on ethnic arguments by insisting on the Russian language first for minorities, but no reciprocity. Relations sour badly between Crimean residents and Russians, while Russians plan fortifications in the Perekop Ithsmus. Putin claims to be waivering over whether to stand in 2018, while spin doctors struggle to find good propaganda pitch. Kirillova pessimistic about protest movement. Siemens scales back Russia commitment. Excellent MAKS-2017 footage of new Su-35S, and good reports on new Su-30SM1 variant, and MiG-35 FULCRUM.

Navalniy vs. Girkin debate produces good media coverage. Important, as the debate straddles two misaligned and deep fault lines in Russian public attitudes, nationalism versus economic well-being and social harmony. Girkin was involved in most Russian covert and overt subversion operations post-Cold War and is a provenly ardent nationalist, to the point of joining re-enactment groups. Assessments of the debate winner seem to reflect who was centerd in either camp, showing Russians remain deeply attached to Imperial Russian notions of national good (e.g. conquest), while still wanting a better life. Girkin argued well, disclosed that his cash and initial weapons stocks for invading Donbass were purloined from occupied Crimea (refusing to disclose who gave both to him), and promptly shifted blame for MH17 on to the GRU / Russian Army (he might actually be telling the truth on this, given the SBU report on AFL2074). Portnikov does a good appraisal of Navalniy and the poor outlook for change in Russian attitudes.

Lukashenko literally received with a red carpet in Kyiv, and Presidential honor guard (notably the new “British style” dress uniforms and Cossack sabers replacing post-Soviet style). Ukraine is helping a bankrupt Belarus, and launching numerous cooperative economic arrangements – Poroshenko has thrown Lukashenko a lifeline to keep the country from imploding, reducing its dependency on business with Russia. Belarusian groups in Ukraine protest loudly.

Moldova votes to expel Russian garrison from Transnistria, Ukraine offers to reboot earlier negotiations – without logistical routes via Ukraine, rescinded in 2015, the stranded Russian 82nd and 113th Separate Peacekeeping Motor-Rifle battalions are virtually useless, other than a means of intimidating the Moldovans.

Motyl’s WashPost essay on Ukraine is excellent and shows the futility of Russia’s revanchist campaign. Media very active on the Thursday Krasnohorivka assault, in which three UA troops and six Russians were claimed KIA. USAF MQ-4 Global Hawk sortie to Donbass and Crimea produces strong media coverage. Oklahoma Army National Guard getting US MSM coverage for the fire rescue, and one Ukrainian language site claimed they might receive civil bravery awards. Ukraine demands Russia extradite a Donbass proxy force soldier who murdered a Ukrainian teenager in 2014 at Sloviansk, while Russia admits that 15 of the former Berkut SOF who gunned down protesters during the Maidan upheaval and then fled to Russia have been granted Russian citizenship.

Trump Administration criticized by the Right for soft position on Iran, and by the Left on Syria. Without Iran, Syria folds as Russian cannot sustain the manpower required.

DCI correctly observes that regime change in the DPRK would be a good thing. “Mapping Crimes Against Humanity in North Korea” report released, and it looks as bad if not worse than Saddam’s murderous rampage, with a mandatory death penalty for almost arbitrary offences, and victims killed in schoolyards and other public places – the DPRK debate has been persistently framed (as was Iraq before 2004) in terms of other party’s interests, the moral dimension of a loathsome Stalinist regime being ignored. Serious drought reported in DPRK, while major construction boom observed. Despair in China over the loss of Liu XiaoboIn foreign policy, Germany’s spat with Turkey worsens.

In foreign policy, Germany’s spat with Turkey worsens.

Galeotti’s strategy essay on NATO is off target, as it neglects the impact of Russian Shock Army elements, A2/AD and deep standoff weapons, like TBMs, GLCMs and FULLBACKs – the perfect defense against hybrid is useless if they simply roll over your defenses. Collins paper is very good and shows clearly targets of Russian influence and corruption via gas money. Karam’s essay on crony capitalism is very good – he has a real point to make. Cuomo argues for Predator/Reaper where he should be arguing for A-10C Warthog.Much on cyber and IO/influence today, too much to detail.

Much on cyber and IO/influence today, too much to detail.

US domestic policy themes also active. Danish and Savodnik essays are very good – the latter detests POTUS but is the first to accept the basis of the Russian play – deceive to seduce to destabilize. Lavrov feeds anti-POTUS MSM again. Ukrainians lauding Amb Huntsman. A. Wess Mitchell of CEPA nominated to replace Vicki Nuland. NYT claims “Business records from the secretive tax haven of Cyprus suggest that Paul J. Manafort owed millions to pro-Russia interests before joining Donald J. Trump’s campaign”. DCI comments at length on Russian efforts to  ‘stick it to America’. Immense bipartisan support for Sen McCain.

Russia / Russophone Reports

U.S. general says allies worry Russian war game may be ‘Trojan horse’

U.S. allies in eastern Europe and Ukraine are worried that Russia’s planned war games in September could be a “Trojan horse” aimed at leaving behind military equipment brought into Belarus, the U.S. Army’s top general in Europe said on Thursday.

U.S. allies worried that Russia’s Zapad drills could be “Trojan horse,” – Gen. Hodges

21.07.17 16:20 – U.S. allies worried that Russia’s Zapad drills could be Trojan horse, – Gen. Hodges U.S. allies in eastern Europe and Ukraine are worried that Russia’s planned war games in September could be a Trojan horse aimed at leaving behind military equipment brought into Belarus. View news.

Zapad-2017 exercise could be used to start aggression against Ukraine

Ukrainian Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak has reiterated his concerns over the Zapad (West)-2017 Russian-Belarusian military exercise, due to be held in Belarus in September. “Ukraine and the world have a common vision on the possible prospects of the Russian Armed Forces’ exercises. The upcoming Zapad-2017 drills are extremely powerful. They could be used to launch an aggression against not only Ukraine but also against any other country of Europe that shares a border with Russia,” Poltorak said on Facebook on Friday. “We will react to these exercises appropriately,” he said.

UAWire – The President of Lithuania demanded that the US deploy its Patriot missile defense system in the Baltics

On Thursday, President of Lithuania Dalia Grybauskaitė observed the progress of the Tobruq Legacy 2017 international military exercises in Šiauliai, where she stated that the US Patriot anti-aircraft missile systems should be placed in the Baltic region. NATO’s Tobruq Legacy-2017 air defense military exercises were launched in Lithuania on July 11 and will end on July 22. They involve about 500 military personnel and 30 air defense personnel from the UK, the US, Latvia and Poland. Before the start of the US exercises, the American Patriot missile system was deployed to Lithuania. It was used on Thursday as part of the exercise. In early July, an agreement was signed to ship the Patriot missile system to Poland. “The speed of a response to the air threats sometimes is very important, so in fact it would be advisable to have such weapons in the Baltic region. This would provide a higher level of security for all of our countries,” Grybauskaitė told reporters in Šiauliai. The Lithuanian leader noted that the defense capacities of the whole region should be coordinated “so that we could complement each other instead of duplicating defenses where they are not needed.” According to the Ministry of Defense of the Republic, NATO air defense exercises are conducted in Lithuania, the Czech Republic and Romania. The maneuvers are headed by the headquarters of the Joint Force Air Component, located in Romania (NATOJFAC). The United States initiated and organized the Tobruq Legacy-2017 exercises. According to the presidential palace, in 2020, Lithuania will organize NATO’s Tobruq Legacy international training exercises.

Russia’s Evolving Grand Eurasia Strategy: Will It Work? – To Inform is to Influence

DMITRI TRENIN July 20, 2017 To eventually achieve a Greater Eurasia, Russia’s strategy needs to be realistic in the near term. A credible strategy would focus on developing a “model” major power relationship with China and crafting a continental arrangement among China, India, and Russia. It would aim to transform the SCO into a platform for continuous, continent-wide diplomacy and negotiations, as well as a consensus-building body and source of legitimacy for the region. It would seek to normalize relations with Japan and gradually defuse the tensions on the Korean Peninsula, in close cooperation with China. Finally, it would have to include an institution-building effort to prioritize the EEU, the Collective Security Treaty Organization, the SCO, and the RIC. As for  western Eurasia, essentially Europe, a combination of confidence building and conflict management could prepare the ground for improved relations with EU member states.

Russia’s New Military Plan Calls for Defense Against the U.S. Across the ‘World Ocean’

The policy foundation released by the Kremlin sees a “series of governments” including the U.S. seeking marine domination at Russia’s expense.

Russia’s Military Challenges U.S. and China By Building a Missile That Makes Its Own Decisions

The U.S., Russia and China are all looking to surpass each other with military innovations such as missiles and drones that use artificial intelligence. Russia is developing new missiles and drones that will use artificial intelligence to think for itself, according to weapons manufacturers and defense officials, in a bid to match military might against the United States and China. Tactical Missiles Corporation CEO Boris Obnosov said Thursday that the new weapon, which he did not name, would be released within the next few years and would take inspiration from Russia’s greatest military rival, the U.S. Speaking at the annual Zhukovsky-based MosAeroShow (MAKS-2017), Obnosov told attendees that he studied the U.S.’s use of the Raytheon Block IV Tomahawk cruise missile against Russia’s allies in Syria and sought to emulate its advanced technology, such as the ability to switch targets mid-flight, in an upcoming weapon.

Commentary: How Russia sparked a Western military renaissance – To Inform is to Influence

In other words, Russia, you provoked the West.  This is your doing, or perhaps better said, undoing. </end editorial>   This month’s G20 meeting in Hamburg showed Western countries still struggling for a strategy to stop suspected Russian meddling in their politics and hacking their elections. Behind the scenes, however, the U.S. and European militaries…

Prague To Remove Memorial Plaque Honoring Soviet Marshal

Municipal authorities in the Czech capital, Prague, have decided not to rehang a memorial plaque honoring the Soviet marshal who participated in the city's liberation at the end of World War I…

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Free Russia Forum Outlines What a Post-Putin Russia Must Do to Rejoin Civilized World

Paul Goble Staunton, July 20 – The Free Russia Forum, a group of opposition politicians and analysts, says that a post-Putin Russia can only rejoin the civilized world if it operates under the principles of the primacy of law in all spheres of life. Otherwise, it will be “impossible” to build a law-based state and rejoin the civilized world. In an appeal released on Tuesday and signed by among others Gary Kasparov, Vladislav Inozemtsev, Aleksandr Morozov, Andrey Piontkovsky, Igor Eidman, Igor Chubais and Andrey Illarionov, the authors outline a checklist that represents at the same time an indictment of the Putin regime ( and A post-Putin Russia will need to take the following foreign policy steps in order to become again part of the civilized, law-based world, they say:

  • “Immediately end military aggression against sovereign states and withdraw units of the Russian armed forces from all occupied territories” in Georgia and Ukraine “according to the norms of international law.”
  • “Immediately end military, financial, diplomatic and other support to separatist forces and movements operating on the territory of foreign states, including states of the former Soviet Union.”
  • “Recognize as legally nullified all acts connected with the seizure from Ukraine and the annexation of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol, the recognition of ‘statehood’ of the so-called ‘Republic of Abkhazia’ and ‘Republic of South Ossetia’ and also with the informal legitimation of the so-called Donetsk and Luhansk ‘people’s republics.’”
  • “Hold criminally responsible all persons guilty of the commission of military crimes on these territories.”
  • “Introduce into the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation provisions defining punishment for the interference in the internal affairs of sovereign states and their active preparation.”

The authors say that “we are convinced that the deconstruction of the political regime which has existed in Russia without the fulfillment of these demands is impossible” and “invite all who consider the existence of the Putin regime fatal for Russia and shameful for its citizens and who seek to offer a worthy alternative to join in support of this declaration.”

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Nearly Two-Thirds of Russians Now Favor Statues Honoring Stalin and Oppose Memorials to His Crimes

Paul Goble Staunton, July 20 – Sixty-two percent of Russians say that statues and other memorials should be put up in Russian cities to remind about “the successes of Joseph Stalin,” a new VTsIOM poll says; but at the same time, 65 percent of them are opposed to any monuments that recall his crimes. Young people under the age of 24 are somewhat more favorably inclined to the erection of Stalin memorials (77 percent) than the average for all Russians, with pensioners who may have lived under the Russian dictator also just above the average (63 percent). It is the middle-aged who oppose such moves ( Both those who favor Stalin statues and those opposed say they are defending historical truth. Fifty seven percent of those favoring erecting statues in his honor say that “people must know the entire truth,” while 39 percent of those who want memorials to his victim make the same argument, VTsIOM reports.

Putin Sparks Controversy With Remarks On Russian, Minority Languages

Russian President Vladimir Putin is receiving both criticism and praise online over remarks he made about the languages of ethnic minorities in the diverse country. Visiting the Republic of Mari E…

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Putin: Non-Russians Must Learn Russian But Russians Mustn’t be Forced to Learn Republic Languages

Paul Goble Staunton, July 21 – “All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others,” George Orwell wrote in Animal Farm. Now, Vladimir Putin has applied this to Russia by saying that all non-Russians must learn Russian but that no ethnic Russian must be compelled to learn a republic language even if he or she lives in a non-Russian republic. Such comments are music to the ears of Russian nationalists, but this asymmetric approach is highly offensive to many non-Russians, who are quite prepared to learn Russian but who believe that those who live among them on the territories where they are the titular nationality should learn their languages as well. By coming down in this way, the Kremlin leader has guaranteed that the divide between Russians and non-Russians in the republics will deepen, that nationalist passions on both sides will intensify, and that more conflicts will arise as both sides see this move as another step to the liquidation of the non-Russian republics and what’s left of Russian federalism. At a session of the Presidential Council on Inter-Ethnic Issues yesterday in the Mari El capital of Ioshkar-Ola, Putin made three pronouncements on ethnic relations: the first on the difference in status between Russian and non-Russian languages, the second on ethno-tourism, and the third on who should be running nationality policy ( First of all, Putin told the group that “Russian language forus is the state language, the language of inter-ethnic communication, and it cannot be replaced by anything else. It is the natural spiritual skeleton of all our multi-national country. Everyone msut know it … The languages of the peoples of Russia are also an inalienable aspect of the unique culture of the peoples of Russia.” But their status is very different, the president continued. Not only are they part not of the state as Russian is but only of the peoples who bear them, studying them is “a right guaranteed by the constitution” but it is “a voluntary right,” not an obligatory one. “To force someone to study a language which is not his native tongue is impermissible.” Indeed, it is “just as impermissible as reducing the level of instruction in Russia. I call the heads of the regions of the Russian Federation to devote particular attention to this.” That is, to any cutbacks in the number of hours of Russian language instruction in favor of required courses in other languages. Second, Putin, like many leaders of a multi-national state in which one ethnic community is dominant, reduces the ethnic issue to one of festivals and tourism; and yesterday, he talked about the need for “branding” the regions and republics so that they could attract more tourists and be better known to others. He did not mention anything about strengthening them. Specifically, Putin said that “the development and popularization by municipalities of ethno-cultural brands” is critical because Russia “is unique in the multiplicity of its nature and national traditions.” But unfortunately, “access to their study is limited not only by insufficient infrastructure but by the lack of initiative at the local level.” And third, Putin talked about the extraterritorial national communities, about municipalities, and about his plenipotentiaries to the regions. He did not talk about the non-Russian republics, a silence that spoke more loudly than any of his declarations about where he plans to go next. Not surprisingly, this Russian-centric vision has attracted enthusiastic reviews from Russian nationalists and centralizers. For a sampling of their praise of Putin’s latest moves, see,1,, But it has also generated a lot of negative reaction as well from non-Russians who can see the handwriting on the wall and have turned to the Internet to share their concerns. For reviews of their comments, see and

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Crimean Residents, Russians Increasingly Hostile and at Odds, Political Scientist Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 21 – Even Crimean residents who initially welcomed the Russian Anschluss are now disappointed with the occupation and angry at Russians for their behavior, and the Russians there, long-time residents new arrivals and tourists, are reciprocating with anger at the local population, according to Yevgeniya Goryunova, a Crimean political scientist. She points to five socio-economic conditions behind this deterioration between Crimean residents and Russians and devotes particular attention to the way in which Russian tourists, the only ones who now come to the Ukrainian peninsula, have exacerbated the situation by their behavior ( First of all, Goryunova points to the increasing difficulty indigenous Crimeans have in making ends meet. On the one hand, they find it difficult to get well-paying jobs unless they have connections and typically lose out to Russians. And on the other, the Russians who are paid more have driven up the rental prices beyond what most Crimeans can afford. Second, she continues, Russian bosses prefer to hire people other than Crimeans because the latter are more knowledgeable about their rights than are Central Asian gastarbeiters and complain when those rights are violated. Consequently, the Crimeans are in a double bind because most new Russian employers would rather hire others. Third, the occupation authorities have done almost everything in their power to destroy indigenous business and agriculture, preferring to import from Russia all kinds of goods. Now, instead of getting milk from a Crimean firm that was driven into bankruptcy, Crimean children are getting milk, often adulterated, from the Russian Federation. Indeed, Goryunova says, “the Russian authorities are conducting an intention policy of destroying Crimean business, including small business by removing not only competitors but also the first flowering of a middle class which in Russia for centuries has been viewed as consisting of ‘superfluous people.’” Fourth, Crimeans face discrimination when they try to register their children for kindergartens or schools. Russians who have arrived with the occupation are given preferential treatment, and Crimeans are left out. That is drawing increasing and increasingly negative comment, the political scientist says. And fifth, when their rights are violated, Crimeans are quite prepared to turn to the courts or to magistrates; but when they do, they typically lose because the courts work not according to the law but rather according to the whim of the powers that be. A particular irritant in the relationship, Goryunova says, concerns the Russian tourists who now dominate the scene. They are invariably cheap, they won’t use paid public toilets preferring instead to relieve themselves in the bushes, and they throw trash about even if there is a barrel to put it in. Any Crimean who complains about such behavior is met with “a tirade” by Russians who say that he or she should be grateful forever to the Russians for “’liberating’ Crimea from ‘the Ukrainian yoke.’” In short, “Russians act like masters, and Crimeans are reduced to the status of guests son their own land” from which “at any moment” they may be forced to leave. “No one needs us in Russia,” one of Goryunova’s neighbors says. “Why then did they take us? In order then to drive us out of our own home.” The recognition of what Moscow is about in Crimea may have come later than one would like, the political scientist adds, but at least it is coming now.

UAWire – Crimean authorities plan to build defensive structures on administrative border with Ukraine

The Kremlin-controlled Crimean government intends to strengthen the defense of the “border” between the annexed peninsula and mainland Ukraine, as stated by Russian Deputy Prime Minister of Crimea Igor Mikhailichenko, Krym.Realii reports. “One of the priorities for Crimea is the creation of defensive structures on the border strip. These measures will make it possible to strengthen the defense on the Russian-Ukrainian portion of the border. Another important matter is the arrangement of the motor vehicle areas adjacent to the entry point,” Russian Crimean government’s press service cites Mikhailichenko as saying at a session of the Crimean border commission. At the session a decision was made to “expand the throughput capacity of the points at the administrative border and also to improve their security and defense for the purpose of the smooth functioning of the mentioned entry points” during the holiday season. Meanwhile, the State Border Guard Service of Ukraine has noted a decrease in passenger transit through the administrative border compared to last year. The State Border Guard Service connects the emergence of queues at the border to the actions of the Russian services at the entry points controlled by them opposite the Ukrainian entry points. According to the Ukrainian border guards, the Russian services slowed down the throughput operations in July. The Russian FSB’s border control in turn accuses the Ukrainian services of creating the queues on the administrative border with the Crimea.

Protesters Call For Resignation Of Kremlin-Appointed Head Of Bashkortostan

UFA, Russia — Hundreds of people have protested in the Republic of Bashkortostan, demanding the resignation of the Kremlin-appointed official who has led the Russian region on the Volga River sinc…

UAWire – Media: Kremlin facing challenges in developing campaign strategy for Putin for 2018 elections

The Kremlin has not yet come up with “a vision for Russia's future” that Vladimir Putin could use in the 2018 presidential election, reported …

Putin Says ‘Not Decided’ If He Will Run Again For Presidency In 2018

Russian President Vladimir Putin said he has not decided whether to seek re-election in the March 2018 presidential vote, Russian state-run media report. Putin is widely expected to seek to secur…

Kseniya Kirillova | Do Russian protests stand a chance? – news portal

Do Russian protests stand a chance?. The number of social and even political protests in Russia is growing steadily. But it will only be able to transform into quality, such as a social explosion, when the arbitrariness of the authorities and hardships affect nearly every Russian without exception. Political – news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

Russian Duma Passes Bill Tightening Internet Restrictions

The Russian parliament's lower house has passed a bill that would prohibit the use of Internet proxy services including virtual private networks, or VPNs. The bill, approved in its third an…

Russia wants to see your salary and social media accounts before letting you visit


Russia: Attack on Journalist – To Inform is to Influence

CPJ: Police should protect Kremlin-critical journalist Associated Press JULY 20, 2017 — 4:45 PM MOSCOW — The Committee to Protect Journalists is calling on Russian police to ensure the safety of reporter Yulia Latynina after a foul-smelling gas was sprayed into her residence on the edge of Moscow. Latynina is well-known as a Kremlin critic,…

Putin And Alekseyeva: A Study In Contrasts

Russia's strongman president, Vladimir Putin, has raised eyebrows with an uncharacteristic visit to the Moscow home of one of the country's staunchest and most respected human rights advocate…

Siemens Cuts Some Russia Ties Over Crimea Turbines Scandal

The German industrial conglomerate Siemens says it is cutting some of its ties to Russia after receiving information that four gas turbines it sold to for use at a Russian power plant had been &quo…

Siemens retreats from Russian energy after Crimean scandal

Germany’s Siemens (SIEGn.DE) tried to distance itself from a Crimean sanctions scandal on Friday, halting deliveries of power equipment to Russian state-controlled customers and reviewing supply deals.

Siemens says all four ‘Taman’ turbines illegally shipped to Crimea

All four of the gas turbines that were delivered in the summer for power plants in Taman, southern Russia were illegally shipped to Crimea, Siemens said in a statement, citing credible information it obtained. Siemens said it is continuing to pursue criminal charges against the individuals at its customer, Russian power plant builder Technopromexport (TPE), responsible for moving the turbines to Crimea in contravention of sanctions against Russia. It is also pursuing legal actions intended to halt any other deliveries to Crimea and ensure that any equipment that has already been shipped is returned to its original destination. Siemens also said it has renewed its offer to buy back the equipment and annul the original contract.

Siemens to suspend shipments of generating equipment to state-controlled cos in Russia

Siemens, which has accused Russian power plant builder Technopromexport (TPE) of illegally shipping gas turbines that were intended for power plants in Taman to Crimea in contravention of sanctions, will suspend shipments of generating equipment on current contracts with Russian companies controlled by the state, the German engineering giant said in a statement. Leading Russian generating company Inter RAO is indirectly controlled by the state. Siemens also confirmed its plans to sell its stake in Russian joint venture Interautomatika. Siemens has also initiated the process of cancelling licensing agreements with Russian companies in the area of shipments of equipment for power plants.

Siemens renews offer to buy back turbines from Russia, annul contract

Siemens has announced it renewed its offer to buy back the equipment bought by Russia and sent to sanctions-bound Crimea, and to annul the original contract, according to its official statement regarding turbines to Crimea. News 21 July from UNIAN.

Russia’s Next Super Weapons: Big Aircraft Carriers and Nuclear-Powered Destroyers? | The National Interest Blog

Could this happen?

What You Need to Know About Russia’s New Sukhoi Su-30SM1 Fighter

Russia has developed a new modernized version of the Sukhoi Su-30SM Flanker-H that features upgraded avionics and weapons.


This Su-35 Flight Demo Will Make Your Head Explode

You might as well forget everything you know about how planes fly.

Russian Armament Plan Boosts MiG-35 and Mi-38 | Combat Aircraft content from Aviation Week

MiG-35 and Mi-38 are in, Zhukovsky is out as MAKS 2017 highlights Russian military orders for new aircraft and news of a new location for the 2019 show.

Navalniy vs. Girkin Debate Reports

‘Snoozefest’ And A ‘Political Loss’: Russians Break Down Navalny’s Debate With Ex-Separatist Commander

It was the main political event for Russia&rsquo;s chattering classes in a slow political season: opposition leader Aleksei Navalny taking on Igor Girkin, a notorious former commander of Moscow-backe…

Two nationalists walk into a room… What we learned when Alexey Navalny debated Igor Strelkov — Meduza

Alexey Navalny, the Russian anti-corruption activist who’s running for president, despite federal laws prohibiting his appearance on the ballot, has debated prominent public figures before. In March last year, he went toe-to-toe with television host Vladimir Pozner. The year before that, he faced off against Anatoly Chubais, the head of Rusnano and one of the most influential people during Boris Yeltsin’s presidency. This Thursday, as his presidential campaign confronts a nationwide police crackdown, Navalny debated Igor Strelkov (born Igor Girkin), the Russian army veteran who played key roles in Russia’s annexation of Crimea and later the pro-Russian separatist war in eastern Ukraine. Meduza summarizes the main takeaways from this encounter, which was televised on the independent station Dozhd and streamed online.

Navalny Takes On Ex-Commander Of Russia-Backed Separatists

Russian opposition leader Aleksei Navalny is debating a prominent former commander with Russia-backed separatists in Ukraine, an event that stoked widespread discussion and criticism among political players and watchers after it was announced last week. Navalny, who is seeking to run for the Russian presidency next year, pledged ahead of the July 20 debate to ask Igor Girkin — his opponent — who was responsible for shooting down a passenger jet over conflict-torn eastern Ukraine in July 2014, an incident in which all 298 people aboard were killed. Known widely by the nom de guerre “Strelkov,” Girkin played a key role in the early stages of the war between Kyiv’s forces and Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine that has killed more than 10,000 people since April 2014. He has previously identified himself as having served in Russia’s Federal Security Service. An international investigative team concluded in September 2016 that the Russian-made Buk missile system that was used to down the airliner had been brought into Ukraine from Russia shortly before it was shot out of the sky and then quickly smuggled back to Russia afterward. It said the missile was fired from a field in separatist-held territory. Russia has repeatedly sought to cast doubt on evidence of its involvement in the downing of the plane. Girkin publicly challenged Navalny to a debate earlier this month, and the opposition politician accepted the offer. Navalny’s decision to take part in the debate has drawn criticism from liberal politicians and activists who say the politician should not meet with a “war criminal.” Girkin has previously said that self-declared separatist authorities in eastern Ukraine executed individuals accused of looting. Documents uncovered by U.S. journalists in eastern Ukraine indicate Girkin signed off on at least three executions.



Strelkov vs Navalniy: in search of an alternative

In the evening of July 20, 2017, a public debate took place in Moscow between two well-known politicians. In a keen conversation we met (video of the debate can be seen on the link): Aleksei Navalny, 41, is a lawyer who made a name for himself on exposing the machinations of large state-owned companies, of which he was a minority shareholder. Subsequently, he went on to expose corruption in the corridors of power. Twice sentenced to suspended sentences. Many times he was brought to administrative responsibility. He took second place in the mayoral elections in Moscow in 2013, almost sending Sergei Sobyanin to the second round. He does not hide his desire to become president of Russia. Igor Strelkov, 46 years old – fought as a volunteer in Transnistria and Bosnia; Subsequently enlisted in the military service in the special purpose of the FSB, served in Dagestan and Chechnya, resigned in 2013. Chevalier of the Order of Courage and a number of medals. From April to August 2014 – the leader of the people’s militia of Donbass and the defense minister of the self-proclaimed NDP. Included in the Western sanctions lists. He is a figurant of the criminal case initiated in Kyiv on the events in the east of Ukraine. Adheres to monarchical views. He calls himself a Russian nationalist. The political journalist Mikhail Zygar became the moderator of the dispute – and I must say that he coped well with his role as referee, although the debate looked rather boring, the show did not work out. To answer all questions, he gave his team a fixed time and very strictly followed the order. However, the passions did not heat up, so the unnaturally wide table between Navalny and Strelkov was clearly an extra precaution. Opponents came to a meeting in costumes. Navalny looked more semi-official – with a red tie-striker. Shooters – without a tie, in a relaxed unbuttoned shirt. However, even with the first phrase it became clear that he was determined to fight: when Zygar proposed to determine the order of the questions by the children’s game “stone – scissors – paper”, Igor Ivanovich resolutely refused. Well, the leader had to throw a coin. The conversation consisted of three rounds: the fight against corruption, relations with the West and the fate of Donbass and the Crimea. The first is the main theme of Navalny, the third is Strelkov, the second is approximately equal and, as it turned out, the field of battle that is least interesting to spectators.

Why Strelkov defeated Navalny | Komsolmolskaya Pravda

The man who gave himself all to the warlike and old-fashioned ideas won over a man who already almost persuaded you to buy such a necessary, such a pretty, comfortable and inexpensive juicer. A man who gave himself all to warlike and old-fashioned ideas won a man who already persuaded You buy such a necessary, such a pretty, so convenient and inexpensive juicer. Igor Ivanovich Strelkov fought in Transnistria. Alexei Anatolyevich Navalny shot a hall from a trauma on the debate of the movement Masha Gaidar. Igor Ivanovich Strelkov fought in Bosnia. Alexei Anatolyevich Navalny sawed Kirovles with an honest White official. Igor Ivanovich Strelkov fought in the first Chechen war. Alexei Anatolyevich Navalny received signatures of the deputies of United Russia for nomination to the mayors. Igor Ivanovich Strelkov fought in the second Chechen war. Aleksei Anatolievich Navalny was released from arrest on the proposal of the prosecutor’s office. Igor Ivanovich Strelkov joined the Crimea with Russia. Aleksey Anatolyevich Navalny established the social and political campaign “The wave of changes” (a wave is when everyone flags them) with honest official Kasyanov and another Milov, in the world elite, with his own words, integrated. Igor Ivanovich Strelkov fought in the Donbass. Alexei Anatolyevich Navalny waved his hands and, repeating monotonously three or four phrases, told that when bad people leave, and good people come, everything will be all right at once (buy a refrigerator, buy an air conditioner, buy a juicer, buy a juicer, buy a juicer, a bitch) . And who should have won on their debates? Life is organized in such a way that those who are sawing something, waving flags, are in dark relations with the deputies of United Russia, in general, they integrate into the world elite, for mechanically repeating three or four phrases, they win. And those who, like the dovlatov partisan Bosnyuk, from their personal belongings only an enemy bullet and a nail, by which a veteran of five wars killed a fascist soldier, they usually lose. Well, what can you do, life is like this. And everyone knows this. But sometimes life – just like a whimsical girl – suddenly looks at you stubbornly and evilly, and says: Th Think, I am, yes, you thought such? And I’m not that! Therefore, Igor Ivanovich Strelkov won, and Alexei Anatolyevich Navalny lost. The man who gave himself all to the warlike and old-fashioned ideas won a man who already almost persuaded you to buy such a necessary, such a pretty, so convenient and inexpensive juicer, but take it, take it, we have a discount for you. Can still buy, eh?

Who won in the debate between Navalny and Strelkov (Girkin)?

The show did not work: Blogosphere and Telegram on the debate between Navalny and Strelkov The debate of Alexei Navalny, who undoubtedly became the main opposition political event of the week, ended. While the official outcome of the debate has not been summed up, all those who were waiting for this debate, but could not see it – are interested in the question of who won. The answer is likely to disappoint those who predicted an unconditional position to the opposition leader. No, it can not be said that Navalny lost this debate. But it can not be said that he definitely won them – and this, in the context of debates with the rival, whose social capital is much smaller and, moreover, very odious and marginal, is equivalent to defeat. It seems that this view is shared by numerous viewers, of varying degrees of fame, who share their impressions in social networks and the channels of the Telegrams. The debate between Navalny and Strelkov Mark Feigin: Now Alexei Anatolyevich can not escape reproaches: why? Whoever is more preoccupied with a weak ideological preparation. Methodology: The discussion with Strelkov was considered by the headquarters of Navalny as a unique chance to win over a new audience – oppositional-minded nationalists, and at the same time to correct a bit of the image of Navalny himself – to the liberal and left (“the minimum wage of 25,000 rubles”) add a patriotic component. But from the very beginning everything went wrong. And Strelkov was more convincing than expected, and the list of topics is not the most profitable, and, most importantly, Strelkov not from United Russia and even without Moscow City Hall contracts, so it’s impossible to hang everything on him in the country, and without it Navalnogo debate is not particularly obtained. The result of the debate is this: Strelkov once again became a political figure after almost two years of oblivion, while Navalny at least did not win this debate. Sputnik and Pogrom: On the whole, the impression is rather gloomy: the potential leader of everything spread right before the FSB colonel, who seriously believes in the world Masonic conspiracy (moreover, he even tried to talk about this conspiracy in the light version of the shooters). Dialogue Navalny does not go at all, and disruption of the script of the conversation causes something like a stupor. <…> But there is good news: at some point both Navalny and Strelkov began to argue which of them is the larger Russian nationalist, which once again confirms our key idea that the Russian National State has no alternative. And here the problem of Navalny is clearly visible: in advance announcing a public debate with an absolutely calculated enemy, Navalny was not prepared for them. That is, in general. Nezigar: The show did not work out Ortega: But in general, pr @@ bat debates even to Strelkov – it was necessary to manage strongly. Red Sion: Igor Ivanovich Vsevolodovich Strelkov Girkin Kotych still looks more worthy than Navalny. The Fuhrer is already fussing about a little, gawking – like a Kirby vacuum cleaner seller or “get to know Christ in our sect.” For America it would be good, but in Russia respect for more fundamental characters. Turntable ATS-1 As for today, God forgive, the debate between Navalny and Strelkov. Both participants of the competition can quietly get up in line for courses of mastery, yes even Jean-Luc Melanchon. To start. And let the presenter still call with him. But this still does not help. With this “repair failure” to deal is useless. The question of who has more prospects to participate in the elections remains open.

“I took my three-year-old”: who won in the debate of Strelkov and Navalny | RBK

Alexei Navalny and Igor Strelkov on Thursday held a debate. Opponents tried to attract media attention and reach a new audience, but contrary to forecasts Navalny did not come out as the winner, experts say.

Girkin said where he got weapons for the war in the Donbass

During the debate with the politician Alexei Navalny, the leader of the movement “Novorossia” Igor Strelkov (Girkin) said that he took weapons for the war in the Donbass in the Crimea. So he answered the question, whose money the fighting was financed in the Donbass. Strelkov also said that the Malaysian Boeing could not have been shot down by the separatists. “The militia of Boeing did not bring down for lack of funds, which it could bring down,” said Strelkov. “All the air defense equipment that I had at my disposal included five MANPADS” Igla “and one” Strela-10 “, which at the time of the fall of Boeing was in Zugres and covered Zugres. Accordingly, the militia subordinate to me, Boeing could not bring down, “- said Strelkov. Strelkov also said that since 1991 he never supported the Russian government, and in 2014 believed that President Vladimir Putin is carrying out a revolution from above. In turn, Navalny refused to call Strelkov a war criminal. “As for war criminals, this is a clear term. If he killed non-combatants, if he did some things that are directly listed in legal documents, then any person, including Igor Ivanovich, will be the subject of the trial. If they admit that the non-combatants were killed or he turned someone into slavery, or engaged in looting, then he is recognized as a war criminal. This is a matter for the court, not for Alexei Navalny, “Navalny said. In November 2014, Strelkov said that his detachment unleashed a war in the Donbas. “I triggered the trigger of the war. If our detachment had not crossed the border, in the end everything would have ended, as in Kharkov, as in Odessa. It would have been several dozen dead, burned, arrested. And that would be the end of it. But practically the flywheel of the war, which is still going on, launched our detachment, “he said then. Google Translate for Business:Translator ToolkitWebsite Translator

Funds, arms for Donbas invasion “taken from annexed Crimea” – Strelkov aka Girkin

Former&nbsp;leader of &ldquo;DPR&rdquo; terrorists Igor Strelkov during Thursday&rsquo;s televised debates with the Russian opposition&rsquo;s Aleksey Navalny said he had organized the invasion of the Ukrainian Donbas in 2014 using money from the Russian-occupied Crimea. News 20 July from UNIAN.

Strelkov explained where he got the money and weapons to invade the Donbass

Former terrorist leader of the DNR Igor Strelkov during a debate with Russian oppositionist Alexei Navalny said that he organized an invasion of the Donbass in 2014 on Money from the Crimea occupied by Russia. “I can say that I took weapons in the Crimea, I also took a little money – very small. As an officer … I can not and will not answer, “Strelkov replied to a question from one of the spectators. The former ringleader of the militants also added that he would not name specific sources of funding. As UNIAN reported, the former “field commander” of the “DNR” Igor Strelkov called for public political debates of the Russian oppositionist Alexei Navalny. They started today at 20:00.

Strelkov answered the question about MH17 shot down over the Donbass

A former leader of the terrorists, “DNR” Igor Strelkov (Girkin) during a debate with Russian opposition leader Alekseem Navalnym responded to a question about his message In Twitter about the “bird-bird” – shot down over the Donbass MH17. Screenshot The terrorist was asked why he first reported the downed plane, and then the message was deleted. To this Girkin replied that he was not in any of the social networks and nowhere wrote anything, except for some forum “Antiques.” See also “Why are you three-year silent?”: Bulk on debate asks Strelkova who shot down MH17 over the Donbas (Video) “The only place in the July 2014, I wrote the reports – a section of” Flood “offline” Antiques “. .. I did not write this message … I can give the word of honor, I can swear on the Bible that I did not write this, “he said. Then Strelkov argues that the terrorists “Boeing” did not shoot down. “I had only SAMs” Igla “and” Strela “Shoot down to us there was nothing more I can not say.” – says ex-leader of the terrorists. As UNIAN reported earlier, “Boeing-777” Malaysia Airlines Airlines flight MH-17 Amsterdam-Kuala Lumpur was shot down in the skies over the Donbas July 17, 2014. On its board were 298 people, all of them were killed. At the end of September 2016, an international investigation team led by the Dutch prosecutor’s office announced the first official results of the investigation. The report states that the anti-aircraft missile system “Buk”, from which shot down “Boeing” was delivered to Ukraine from Russia. The launch site of the missile is the village of Pervomaiskoye, which was under the control of militants controlled by Russia. The number of suspects, according to the report, is about 100 people. The Kremlin stated that the report could not be considered a “final truth”, and the conclusions of the investigators in Moscow were called “preliminary.” The Russian Foreign Ministry called the report “biased.”

Window on Eurasia — New Series: For the Chekists, Navalny is the Yeltsin of 1987, Portnikov Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 21 – Many have forgotten that in May 1987, Boris Yeltsin, then head of the Moscow city committee of the CPSU, received representatives of the chauvinist and anti-Semitic Pamyat organization, thus sending a signal that he was someone the KGB and its allies could count on to defend their interests, Vitaly Portnikov says. Today, 30 years later, the Ukrainian analyst says, Aleksey Navalny is playing a similar role by taking part in debates with Igor Strelkov, “an employee of [Russia’s] special services and the new face of ‘the Russian world’” ( That the debate occurred “is not important.” Instead, what is important, Portnikov says, “is to show the public, including the openly chauvinist and reactionary, that the future ‘leader’ is capable of talking with everyone,” just as Yeltsin did three decades ago. For that segment of Russian opinion, “the debates are the same signal: here’s their man, a Russian one can talk with.” Portnikov stresses that he isn’t asserting that “Navalany is an FSB agent. Navalny rather is a project of the special services in a much broader sense of the world. Yeltsin too waasn’t an agent of the KGB,” the organs then recognized that it was “categorically prohibited” from recruiting someone that senior in the party. “But they were not prohibited from talking, cooperating and seeking common interests,” the commentator says. “Yeltsin needed power, a lot of power, indeed all power. And the chekists needed access to financial flows and the preservation of control over the country, total control without the interference of ‘party people.’” They got that in 1991 and then again in 1993. Portnikov continues: “Navalny, although he too criticizes Yeltsiin, says precisely what Yeltsin said earlier, what the average Russian, a chauvinist and obscurantist but at the same time a little man with a childish psychology wants to hear.” Navalny just like Yeltsin is someone who can be counted on to be a strong hand and hold things together. “If Navalny came to power in a crisis, he would agree not only with a withdrawal from the Donbass and Crimea but even with the independence of Chechnya or Tatarstan.” For him, “the question will be only this.” Does he and those is allied with have control over the remaining territory. “Of course,” Portnikov acknowledges, “the figure of Navalny is incomparable to that of Yeltsin. Even at the first stage of his career, Yeltsin was a real political and looked to be the leader of the masses. Navalny doesn’t. “But the possibility of the collapse of the regime today is not so evident and close for the Chekists as was the case at the end of the 1980s,” he continues. “They prepared Yeltsin to replace Gorbachev who had lost control over the state and didn’t want to change anything in the economy.” The current Kremlin ruler “is not Gorbachev. Rather, he is a slowly aging figure who is losing his grip on reality and living in his own world like Brezhnev or Andropov. But if the calculation of the chekists is correct, in place of this Brezhnev will inevitably come a new Gorbachev from his immediate circle.” “A Gorbachev who will try to reform an un-reformable system without changing anything in a serious way. And the system, just as at the end of the 1980s is beginning to fall apart in a real way, all the more so because citizens won’t fear this new Gorbachev as they do Putin.” For the chekists and bandits, Navalny is a real find, a reserve in case things go really wrong, Portnikov says, and before that happens, they may be able to “grow” him into “a new Yeltsin,” someone with whom they will have agreed about everything well in advance.”

Belarus Reports

Lukashenka Gets Red-Carpet Welcome In Ukraine

Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko rolled out the red carpet for his visiting counterpart from Belarus, Alyaksandr Lukashenka, but some Ukrainians were critical, especially of the timing of the authoritarian leader’s visit. (RFE/RL’s Ukrainian Service)

Meeting between the Presidents of Ukraine and Belarus began — Official website of the President of Ukraine

President Petro Poroshenko is having a meeting with President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko who is on an official visit to Ukraine. At the beginning of the meeting in “vis-a-vis” format, the Head of State noted that following today’s negotiations, the parties will elaborate new formats, guidelines and the”roadmap” that will allow to enhance cooperation between Ukraine and Belarus.

Meeting between the Presidents of Ukraine and Belarus: The Ukrainian-Belarusian border will never be a border of war — Official website of the President of Ukraine

“Today, I have once again been reassured by you, Mr. President, that the territory of friendly Belarus would never be used for aggressive actions against Ukraine and the Ukrainian-Belarusian border would never be a border of war,” the Head of State said.

Meeting between Petro Poroshenko and Alexander Lukashenko: Ukraine and Belarus have a lot of common projects and interests — Official website of the President of Ukraine

“We have lots of common interests and projects. Our cooperation is extremely efficient, useful and mutually beneficial,” the Head of State emphasized. According to him, the leaders of Ukraine and Belarus have a political will and persistent desire to implement these interests for the sake of prosperity of the two peoples and strengthening of independence of the two countries.

President: Ukraine-Belarus program of cultural cooperation for 2017-2021 expands opportunities for the implementation of joint projects in this sphere — Official website of the President of Ukraine

The Program of Cultural Cooperation for 2017-2021 signed today by the Ministries of Culture of Ukraine and Belarus increases opportunities for the implementation of joint projects, as stated by President Petro Poroshenko.

“Happy to welcome Belarus president on his official visit to Ukraine,” – Poroshenko meets Lukashenko. VIDEO+PHOTO |

21.07.17 15:42 – Happy to welcome Belarus president on his official visit to Ukraine, – Poroshenko meets Lukashenko. VIDEO+PHOTO The official meeting ceremony of the Presidents of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko and Belarus Alexander Lukashenko took place in front of the Presidential Administration building in Kyiv. View news.

Belarus not to become platform for waging aggression against Ukraine, Lukashenko assures – 21.07.2017 15:35 — Ukrinform News

21.07.2017 15:35. President of the Republic of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko has assured that the territory of his country will never become a platform for waging aggression against Ukraine.

Lukashenka to Ukraine: no aggression from north – news portal

Lukashenka to Ukraine: no aggression from north. “The Ukrainian-Belarusian border will never be the border of war.” Main – news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

Lukashenko assures Ukraine will never face aggression from Belarussian territory

President of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko has assured that the territory of his country will never be used for aggressive actions against Ukraine, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has said.

Lukashenko offers help in organizing humanitarian convoys to Donbas

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has offered to ship humanitarian assistance to residents of Donetsk and Luhansk regions via Ukraine without intermediaries.

Ukrainian-Belarusian interregional forum scheduled for 2017

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko has said an interregional Ukrainian-Belarusian forum will be held in Belarus’ Gomel region during 2017.

UAWire – Mother of Belarusian volunteer who fought in the Donbas asks Poroshenko to protect her son

The mother of the Belarusian volunteer Taras Avatarov who was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment in his homeland for “smuggling an explosive …

Pro-Belarus activist bared her breasts during Poroshenko-Lukashenko meeting

A female activist bared her breasts at Ukraine’s Presidential Administration in Kyiv on Friday during a document signing ceremony between Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko and Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko. The young woman, who yelled, “Free Belarus,” was subdued and taken out of the room. An Interfax-Ukraine news agency correspondent said the young woman removed her jacket and was not wearing any clothing underneath it. “Free Belarus!” was written in bold letters on her chest. She began yelling the slogan before security guards were able to subdue her and drag her out of room. The president’s press spokesman said the woman was accredited to the ceremony as a journalist. Police from Kyiv’s Pechersky District Precinct were dispatched to the scene to investigate the incident. Ukrainian media said the woman’s name is Anzhelina Diash, a known activist of the FEMEN movement. Later, during a speech made by Lukashenko, a member of Ukraine’s official delegation fell ill and had to be carried out of the room where the Ukrainian and Belarusian presidents were. The man, identified later as Border Service of Ukraine Chief Viktor Nazarenko, received medical treatment. The incident forced Lukashenko to interrupt his monologue.

Activists hold picket outside Poroshenko administration ahead of Lukashenko visit

As Belarus leader Lukashenko is set to meet with Ukranian President Petro Poroshenko tomorrow July 20, a rally was held by Belarusian community and Belarus-born volunteers outside the presidential administration in Kyiv, RFL/RL's Belarusian service. News 20 July from UNIAN.

Contracts worth more than $40 mln signed at Ukrainian-Belarusian business forum

Business contracts totaling more than $40 million have been signed during the Ukrainian-Belarusian business forum held on July 21 within the framework of the official visit to Ukraine of Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, the press service of the Ukrainian Chamber of Commerce and Industry has said.

Ukraine and Belarus intend to achieve mutual trade turnover of $5 bln – Poroshenko

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has declared the goal of relations between Ukraine and Belarus is raising trade turnover to $5 billion.

Trade turnover between Ukraine and Belarus grew by 10.5% in 2016 – 21.07.2017 16:14 — Ukrinform News

21.07.2017 16:14. In 2016, commodity turnover between Ukraine and Belarus amounted to $3.83 billion, which is 10.5% higher than in 2015.

Belorusneft to drill wells for DTEK in Ukraine – 21.07.2017 14:25 — Ukrinform News

21.07.2017 14:25. The Ukrainian DTEK Naftogaz and Belarusian oil company Belorusneft signed an agreement on drilling services in Ukraine.

Transnistria Reports

Moldovan Parliament demands Russia withdraw troops – To Inform is to Influence

Another thorn in Russia’s side, Moldova. Russia has de facto occupied the area called Transnistria, officially the Pridnestrovian Moldavian Republic, since 1992 and Moldova wants them gone.  </end editorial> The most parliamentarians voted in affirmative for this decision 15:25, 21 July 2017 The Parliament of Moldova adopted the statement with the demand to withdraw the Russian troops from the…

Klimkin, Moldova deputy PM discuss coordination of steps to ensure two countries’ territorial integrity

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin and Moldovan Deputy Prime Minister for Reintegration Gheorghe Balan discussed establishing joint customs and border control along the length of the Ukrainian-Moldovan border. The officials also agreed to strengthen the coordination of steps to ensure the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine and Moldova in the context of the security situation, a Ukrainian Foreign Ministry spokesperson said on Thursday. Klimkin and Balan also discussed ways to intensify the 5+2 negotiating process to settle the Transdniestrian conflict, and the current state of the Ukrainian-Moldovan relationship. The 5+2 format involves Russia, Ukraine and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe as mediators, and the European Union and the United States as monitors. The 5+2 talks have not been held for almost three years now.

Ukraine Reports

Alexander Motyl | Thanks, Putin, for giving Ukrainian democracy a boost – The Washington Post

The war has galvanized Ukrainian national identity and turned it toward the West. Ironically, Vladimir Putin, his odious authoritarian regime and his violence against Ukraine have played key roles in Ukraine’s continuing success with democracy. Russia’s dictator surely did not expect to hasten Ukraine’s transformation into an increasingly Western state when he invaded Crimea in early 2014. And he surely didn’t expect to lose it to democracy when he opposed Ukraine’s democratic transformations. Alexander Motyl is a professor of political science at Rutgers University.

US condemns deadliest day of violence in Ukraine this year – ABC News

US condemns deadliest day of violence in Ukraine this year

U.S. condemns latest violence in eastern Ukraine

The United States has condemned the latest violence in eastern Ukraine, according to Spokesperson for the U.S. Department of State Heather Nauert. “So I have one announcement at the top, and you’ve probably followed some of the news coming out of Ukraine recently. The United States says it wants to condemn the latest violence in eastern Ukraine. The last 24 hours were considered the deadliest one-day period in 2017,” she said at a press briefing on July 20. “In this time period, eight Ukrainian soldiers have now been killed, including five deaths in an attack which appears to have been initiated by Russian-led forces. We call again on Russia and the forces that it arms, trains, and leads in the east to immediately observe the ceasefire,” she said. To comply with the Minsk agreements, those forces must withdraw all heavy weapons, disengage from the line of contact, and allow full, safe, and unfettered access to the OSCE monitors to the international border, she added.

US condemns escalation in Donbas ‘initiated by Russian-led forces’ – 21.07.2017 10:47 — Ukrinform News

21.07.2017 10:47. Official Washington condemns the actions of the Russian-led forces, which led to the aggravation of hostilities in eastern Ukraine and the death of Ukrainian servicemen.

Poroshenko to demand full ceasefire in Donbas at Normandy phone talks on July 24

Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has announced he will demand a full ceasefire in Donbas, eastern Ukraine, during a phone conversation as part of Normandy Four talks between the presidents of Ukraine, Russia, France and the German Chancellor, which is scheduled for July 24. News 21 July from UNIAN.

Poroshenko: Russian aggression already claims lives of 11,000 Ukrainians – 21.07.2017 16:24 — Ukrinform News

21.07.2017 16:24. The Russian aggression has already claimed lives of 11,000 Ukrainians, both the military and civilians.

President Poroshenko: There is no alternative to Minsk agreements – 21.07.2017 15:43 — Ukrinform News

21.07.2017 15:43. President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko states that at present there is no alternative to the Minsk agreements.&nbsp;

Northrop Grumman RQ-4 Global Hawk Circled Near The Southern Coast Of Occupied Crimea – To Inform is to Influence

The monstrous Global Hawk is watching Russian-occupied Crimea.  The sensor package they carry is incredibly high-resolution with amazing depth of vision. The electronic detection package is also astonishing. Notice the strategic Global Hawk stays in international airspace at 52,000 – 53,000 feet.  10 hours of hovering allows a lot of detailed reconnaissance.  </end editorial> July…


Militants launched 29 attacks on Ukrainian troops in Donbas in last day – 21.07.2017 09:25 — Ukrinform News

21.07.2017 09:25. Militants launched 29 attacks on positions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in ATO area in Donbas over the past day.&nbsp;

Five Ukrainian soldiers killed, eight wounded in ATO zone in last day – 21.07.2017 14:04 — Ukrinform News

21.07.2017 14:04. Five Ukrainian soldiers were killed in the anti-terrorist operation (ATO) zone in eastern Ukraine over the past day.

Five Ukraine troops die in fierce clash with Donetsk rebels – BBC News

The US says it was the most serious fighting in eastern Ukraine so far this year.

Five Ukrainian soldiers killed, eight wounded in combat yesterday, – ATO HQ

21.07.17 11:10 – Five Ukrainian soldiers killed, eight wounded in combat yesterday, – ATO HQ On July 20, five Ukrainian fighters were killed in the anti-terrorist operation (ATO), eight were wounded. View news.

Ukraine’s army suffers heaviest death toll in a day this year: 8 dead, 10 wounded (UPDATED) | KyivPost

Eight Ukrainian soldiers have been killed and ten wounded in attacks by Russian-backed forces in the Donbas war zone in the past 24 hours, according to Ukraine’s military reports on July 20. Four servicemen were killed in an artillery strike near Krasnohorivka at 4.00 a.m., the military press center says in an updated communique on recent casualties. Earlier, Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense spokesman Andriy Lysenko said Russian occupying forces engaged mortars, artillery, tanks and Grad-P rocket systems against Ukraine’s positions near the city.

“The enemy sits on the armor and insolently goes on the offensive”: volunteer told the details of the night battles in Krasnogorovka

Russian-terrorist forces in the area ATO resorted to massive shelling and launched an unprecedented attack on the position of the Ukrainian troops. This was told by the former military intelligence officer, the volunteer “Turn around alive” Andrei Rymaruk, the “Observer” reports. “Guys say this, I personally do not remember the end of 2014-15, when the opponent sits on the armor and insolently goes on the offensive. All these offensive we were able to fight off, but, unfortunately, we have also, for its part suffered losses “, He noted. In addition, the volunteer added that in some areas the fighting lasted until 7-8 in the morning.  “The battles in Krasnogorovka began around one in the morning, the enemy first started firing from 120-mm mortars, then the barrel artillery: 2C1 and 2C3, After the bombardment, they went on the offensive and once again struck from the “Grad.” All the offensive of several units of armored vehicles covered up three tanks.It is difficult to imagine the scale of everything that happened at night, especially since a very large number of shells Fell out not by our positions, but by the peaceful population, “stressed the veteran of the ATU. According to him, it is too early to speak about the aggravation of the situation. “We’ll see tonight, tomorrow, until Monday intensified fighting at the weekend is always significantly higher than during the week.” – he concluded. As reported by the Ministry of Defense, Armed Forces of Ukraine in the ATO zone suffered heavy casualties, killing 9 soldiers, wounded another 5 per day.

ATO Press Center about firefight near Krasnohorivka on July 20 | Міністерство оборони України

An enemy’s group of 10 or 15 people assaulted a position of one mechanized battalion using 120 mm mortars and tank.Accordingto preliminarydata, at leastfourtanksshelled the position. The Ukrainian soldiers opened return fire. Two militants were killed; they are allegedly from ‘Oplot’ battalion. The unit commander took decision to move back to an intermediate position to minimize losses among his subordinates. During this maneuver two more terrorists were killed. After arrival of Ukrainian refreshment, the enemy was forced to retreat under cover of tanks, mortars, and Grad. When density of fire reduced, medical vehicles moved to evacuate wounded. Meanwhile, the enemy kept on shelling. According to radar interception, the enemy lost four people. When the enemy was retreating, the Ukrainian soldiers recorded evacuation of two more killed militants. Others left weapons and other evidence of RF presence in Donbas on the battlefield and moved back.

The headquarters of the ATO described the details of the battle in Krasnogorovka, as a result of which the AFU suffered losses

From the beginning of the day the Russian-occupation troops violated the armistice 20 times, near Krasnogorovka the forces of the antiterrorist operation repulsed the attack of terrorists. This is reported in the summary of the press center of the headquarters of the ATU as of 18.00. “Today in the ATO zone was distinguished by the intensification of provocations by illegal armed formations along the entire line of demarcation. Contrary to all agreements, the militants not only used prohibited weapons, but also tried to break through the defense of the ATU forces, “the headquarters noted. The hot thing was in Mariupol direction. “Beginning at one o’clock in the morning and almost till 8 o’clock in the morning, the bandit formations from Staromikhailovka fired at our strongpoints near Krasnogorovka from artillery of 122 mm caliber, mortars of 120 and 82 mm caliber, grenade launchers and heavy machine guns. About 4 o’clock in the morning the enemy, strengthening the fire onslaught, fired 10 rounds from the portable jet launcher “Grad-P” from the portable anti-aircraft launcher “Grad-P” and used a tank. At the same time, under the fire cover, about 20 militants approached our positions. A battle ensued, during which ATU fighters used grenade launchers and small arms and skillfully forced criminals to retreat. Unfortunately, during this fighting clash three of our military were killed, seven were injured, and one soldier was captured by militants, “the report said. Read also The journalist showed a video from today’s “hell” in the ATU zone – Krasnogorovka. It is also noted that on this night the militants from the tank were beaten at houses of peaceful residents of Krasnogorovka. In Donetsk direction around one in the morning, as a result of the enemy sniper firing at the stronghold of the Ukrainian Armed Forces near Novgorod, another Ukrainian soldier was killed. In addition, gangsters from grenade launchers and small arms fired on the outskirts of Avdeevka, Butovka mine, and from mortar shells of various calibers they were beating Nevelsky and Novgorod. In the Lugansk direction, from midnight, under the fire of enemy grenade launchers and small arms, the positions of the APU in the Threekhzbenka, Novoaleksandrovka, Novozvanovka and Donets turned out to be. And at 15.00 the enemy twice hit from mortars of a caliber of 82 millimeters on the Crimean. “The Armed Forces of Ukraine opened fire 9 times, using mainly small arms and grenade launchers,” they added at the headquarters.

Ukraine’s defense ministry: Six “DPR” militants eliminated in Krasnohorivka battle on July 20 (Photos)

Ukrainian Defense Ministry speaker for Anti-Terrorist Operation (ATO) issues Andriy Lysenko has announced that the Ukrainian Armed Forces eliminated six militants of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic in a battle outside the town of Krasnohorivka in Donbas on July 20. News 21 July from UNIAN.

ATO HQ revealed details of large scale attack by pro-Russian terrorists on Ukrainian positions in Krasnohorivka. PHOTOS

21.07.17 12:25 – ATO HQ revealed details of large scale attack by pro-Russian terrorists on Ukrainian positions in Krasnohorivka. PHOTOS The Ukrainian soldiers repulsed the attack, three of them were killed, seven wounded, one taken captive. View photo news.

Enemy saboteur group attempted attack on Ukrainian positions last night in Krasnohorivka; four terrorists killed, – 92nd brigade officer

21.07.17 11:43 – Enemy saboteur group attempted attack on Ukrainian positions last night in Krasnohorivka; four terrorists killed, – 92nd brigade officer Pro-Russian militants were shelling Krasnohorivka over four hours in order to cover for their saboteur group. In the skirmish, three Ukrainian military were killed, three were wounded, four shell shocked. View news.

The journalist showed a video from today’s “hell” in the ATO zone – Krasnogorovka

The enemy tried to break through in Krasnogorovka, because of which the forces of ATO suffered losses. This was reported on his Facebook page by journalist Andrei Tsaplienko. Read also “The enemy sits down on armor and goes insane”: the volunteer told the details of the night battles in Krasnogorovka “Little Russian geeks have climbed.” Attempt of a breakthrough, Krasnogorovka. “We have heavy losses,” the message says. Also Tsaplienko published a video from Krasnogorovka, in which he heard ruptures of 120 mm min. As reported by the headquarters of the ATU, for the current day, July 20, four Ukrainian soldiers were killed, one was taken prisoner.

Andriy Tsaplienko posted a video to his Timeline. – Andriy Tsaplienko


Eight wounded by blast at army training range – news portal

Eight wounded by blast at army training range. The incident took place when a T-64B tank was being prepared for shooting. Political – news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

President expressed gratitude to the staff of the Kyiv Polytechnic Institute for new military-technical developments — Official website of the President of Ukraine

The President expressed gratitude to the staff of the Kyiv Polytechnic Institute for new military-technical developments that work for the defense of our sovereignty and territorial integrity.

National Guard soldiers rescue trapped residents in Ukraine apartment building fire

Soldiers from the Oklahoma Army National Guard noticed a burning apartment building in Lviv, Ukraine and immediately swung into action.

Ukraine asks Russia to extradite Donetsk militant who violently killed pro-Ukrainian teenager

Ukrainian Deputy Prosecutor General Yevhen Enin has announced that the Prosecutor General's Office (PGO) of Ukraine has sent a request to Russian prosecutors for the extradition of Vadim Pogodin, one of the leaders of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic (&quot;DPR&quot;), who violently murdered a male teenager in Donbas three years ago. News 21 July from UNIAN.

Ukraine asked Russian Prosecutor’s Office to extradite terrorist Pogodin, – Sarhan

21.07.17 13:55 – Ukraine asked Russian Prosecutor’s Office to extradite terrorist Pogodin, – Sarhan … View news.

15 Berkut fighters involved in Maidan execution were granted Russian citizenship. DOCUMENT (in Ukrainian)

21.07.17 13:10 – 15 Berkut fighters involved in Maidan execution were granted Russian citizenship. DOCUMENT (in Ukrainian) 15 former servicemen of the Berkut Special Forces unit, who were members of the so-called Black Company involved in the shooting of protesters at Instytutska Street on Feb. 20, 2014, have been granted Russian citizenship since 2014. 15 former servicemen of the Berkut Special Forces unit, who were members of the so-called “Black Company” involved in the shooting of protesters at Instytutska Street on Feb. 20, 2014, have been granted Russian citizenship since 2014. Censor.NET reports citing documents published by Tyzhden. The document reads that in response to an inquiry from Ukrainian law enforcement officials, the Russian Prosecutor General’s Office reported that 14 special forces servicemen have been granted Russian citizenship since 2014, and three received a temporary refuge. Another former employee of Berkut, according to the data provided by Russia, has been a Russian citizen since 1999.

Ukrainians Mark Anniversary Of Journalist’s Killing

Friends and activists remembered slain journalist Pavel Sheremet in the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, on the first anniversary of his assassination. Sheremet was killed in a car-bomb blast and supporters said they are frustrated the investigation into his death has failed to determine who ordered the attack. (RFE/RL’s Ukrainian Service)

UAWire – Ukraine has simplified the entry procedure into Crimea for lawyers and human rights advocates

On Wednesday, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine amended the order of entry to the temporarily occupied territory of Ukraine and exit from it, …

Indigenous peoples and human rights organizations express solidarity with indigenous peoples of Ukraine – 21.07.2017 11:40 — Ukrinform News

21.07.2017 11:40. Indigenous peoples and human rights organizations have expressed solidarity with the indigenous peoples of Ukraine (Crimea): Crimean Tatars, Karaites and Krymchaks and called on both Russia and Ukraine to respect the self-determination of the indigenous peoples of Crimea and support their natural rights.

A populist “hobbyhorse” of Hungarian authorities – news portal

Dutch populists are speculating on the association of Ukraine with the EU, the French ones on a terrorist threat, and the German ones on migration. On top of all this, Hungarian populists have long been riding their traditional “hobbyhorse”, that is “the protection of Hungarian national minorities in neighboring states”. The Hungarian authorities have been using this aggressive rhetoric and pompous PR stunts in this area as a smokescreen for serious miscalculations that led to the failure of its policy in regard of the Hungarian national minority in Ukraine.

UAWire – Poroshenko: Georgia and Ukraine have a common aggressor – Russia

President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko wrote on Facebook that the Ukrainian and Georgian people will jointly fight for de-occupation of their …

Settling The Ukrainian Gas War |

The conflict between Russia and the Ukraine endures, but its energy business could instead of being a problem, actually be an opportunity to improve relations between these nations

UAWire – Kyiv: Coal from the separatist-held areas of Donbas may be exported to Turkey

The coal mined in along the demarcation line in eastern Ukraine can be delivered to Turkey through Russia, as announced by the Minister of …

UAWire – IMF ready to postpone requirement for land reform in Ukraine

Pension reform, privatization, and the fight against corruption are key requirements for the completion of the fourth review of the Extended …

Russia / Iran / Syria / Iraq / OEF Reports

Certifiable Madness (Iran Nuclear Deal: Recertification Only Helps the Regime) | National Review

Obama made a lousy deal with the Iranians, but is that still better than no deal at all? It’s starting to look like it isn’t …

Trump Grapples With the Iran Deal

A virtual war for Washington broke out last week. Principals in the administration were in a battle over whether to certify Iran was in accord with U.S. law and terms of the nuclear deal.

Why is CIA Director Weighing in With Policy Advice on Iran? « LobeLog

Critical Perspectives on U.S. Foreign Policy

Madison Schramm and Ariane M. Tabatabai | Why Regime Change in Iran Wouldn’t Work | Foreign Affairs

There are roughly two avenues by which Washington could attempt to accomplish the goal in Iran: by supporting a faction more friendly to the United States or by invading the country and replacing its institutions. Neither strategy, however, would produce the desired end.

CIA Chief Warns Russian, Iranian Aims in Syria Threaten the U.S. – Bloomberg

Russia and Iran both threaten U.S. interests as they pursue long-term roles in Syria, CIA Director Mike Pompeo said.

John McCain: Trump is ‘playing right into the hands’ of Putin by ending Syrian rebel program


Trump’s breathtaking surrender to Russia – The Washington Post

This isn’t what Reagan would have done.

Making Peace With Assad’s State of Barbarism | Foreign Policy

As Donald Trump and Emmanuel Macron signal they’re not after regime change in Damascus, both leaders should remember there’s a price to keeping Assad in power.

Sam Heller | Washington’s Dead End in Syria | Foreign Affairs

Washington’s approach to fighting ISIS in Syria—and in particular the local Kurdish partner it has chosen—has granted a victory that can last only as long as the United States stays.

UAWire – Russia and Iraq negotiate major contract on supply of T-90 tanks

Vladimir Kozhin, the presidential aide for military-technical cooperation, told the Izvestia newspaper that Russia and Iraq have negotiated a …

UAWire – A Russian Navy warship entered the Mediterranean Sea on its way to Syria

The Russian landing ship Nikolay Filchenkov entered the waters of the Mediterranean Sea on the way to Syria, Interfax reported. The vessel is …


CIA chief signals desire for regime change in North Korea –

CIA Director Mike Pompeo on Thursday evening offered some of the most aggressive comments yet from the Trump administration with regard to North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un.

CIA Director: The North Koreans Would Love To See Kim Jong Un Go

Mike Pompeo did avoid saying how the U.S. would feel about regime change in North Korea.

Hawaii rolling out preparedness plan for North Korean missile attack – The Washington Post

“We do not want to cause any undue stress for the public,” Vern Miyagi, Hawaii’s Emergency Management Agency administrator said in a statement reported Thursday.

U.S. to ban Americans from traveling to North Korea – LA Times

U.S. officials said Friday that the Trump administration will ban American citizens from traveling to North Korea following the death o…

A Nuclear Game of Thrones with North Korea – Modern War Institute

North Korea firing squad carries out public executions in school yards, report says | Fox News

Kim Jong Un’s brutal North Korean regime shot so-called criminals to death in school yards and fish markets in a twisted attempt to create an atmosphere of fear throughout the dictatorship, a Wednesday report from a human rights group revealed.

Mapping Crimes Against Humanity in North Korea July 2017 Mass Graves, Killing Sites and Documentary Evidence Transitional Justice Working Group (TJWG)

“International norms and standards require that those responsible for human rights violations in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, in particular for crimes against humanity, be held accountable.”1 This report presents the initial findings of our project, “Mapping Crimes Against Humanity in North Korea” (the Mapping Project), which identifies locations of suspected mass burial sites, killing sites and possible sites containing documentary evidence linked to crimes against humanity in North Korea.2 In support of the international push for accountability for decades of systematic human rights abuses, it contains maps and numbers on these three categories of sites, based on two years of interviews with 375 former residents of North Korea. The Mapping Project records specific location coordinates for sites identified that may contain evidence connected to human rights abuses that are within the scope of our inquiries. Using publicly-available Google Earth satellite imagery, the research participants identify the locations and key features of the sites types. The coordinates and associated testimonial data are then categorised and used to create visual maps. The maps and the accompanying testimonies create a picture of the scale of the abuses that have taken place over decades. Certain patterns in the abuses are also emerging, even at this early stage of the research process. Our initial research indicates that burial sites are often located in mountainous areas, away from residential areas, but may also be found in parts of common cemeteries and around prisons. Killing sites tend to be found in river beds, market places, near bridges, facilities for detention and imprisonment, and sports fields. Although it is beyond our current capabilities to investigate and analyse the sites due to lack of access, this research is a crucial first step in the pursuit of accountability for human rights crimes. It is also designed to serve first responders3 who may enter North Korea in the future. Part of our work involves looking into rapidly advancing remote sensing (RS) technologies, designed to detect and enhance analysis of sites containing human remains, for future application in North Korea.

North Korea: Kim Jong-un forces parents to kill disabled children and bans them Pyongyang | World | News |

PEOPLE with disabilities in North Korea are killed at birth, often by their parents, or sent for obscure medical experiments at the secretive and terrifying “Hospital 83”, a new human rights report declared.

North Korea: Worst Drought Since 2001 Hits Food Supplies |

The worst North Korean drought since 2001 has severely damaged staple crop production and could lead to serious food shortages

North Korea drought: Children at risk in ‘worst crisis since 2001’ – BBC News

Children and the elderly are at risk from the country’s worst drought since 2001, the UN says.

How North Korea Evades Sanctions in Southeast Asia: The Malaysia Case | The Diplomat

Two companies with links to Pyongyang and Malaysia reveal how North Korea can skirt international restrictions.

Pyongyang’s Construction Boom: Is North Korea Beating Sanctions? | 38 North: Informed Analysis of North Korea

The construction boom in Pyongyang, along with other improved economic indicators, demonstrate that North Korea is successfully overcoming sanctions.

Russia defies U.S. data on location of North Korea launch –

Documents Russia submitted to the United Nations last week challenge U.S. claims regarding the location of a recent North Korea missile launch.

North Korea snubs South’s proposal of military talks |

South Korea’s proposed military talks aimed at easing tension between the two Koreas fails to happen after the North snubs the call. But as Reuters Jack Kim reports, it might not be too late.


Rare peek at how North Korea’s rich relax | New York Post

This is what a great day looks like in North Korea. Rare photos show wealthy North Koreans enjoying Pyongyang Central Zoo and Circus, which features…

North Korea Sanctions Breaches Bring Fines for Two Latvian Banks – Bloomberg

Latvian regulators fined two more lenders over involvement in attempts to circumvent international sanctions on North Korea, bringing the total to five banks fined with the investigation continuing.

How to persuade China to abandon North Korea

It’s time to consider the unthinkable.

U.S. Navy chief asks Chinese counterpart for help on North Korea

The U.S. Navy’s top officer asked his Chinese counterpart to exert influence on North Korea to help rein in its advancing nuclear and missile programs, a U.S. official said on Thursday.

Britain stands shoulder to shoulder with Japan on North Korea – Breaking News – Jerusalem Post

TOKYO- British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said on Friday his country stands with Japan in efforts to rein in North Korea’s nuclear and missile development, and called on China to help bring Pyongyang back to negotiations with world powers.

Bellicose China mounting expansionist policy: US Republican Party | Zee News

“While tensions between China and Taiwan have persisted since the 1950s, China has now mounted an aggressive and expansionist policy towards other nations in the region in order to enlarge their sphere of influence,” the Republican Study Committee said in its report yesterday as the House of Representatives initiated steps to pass the annual budget.

Wayward Nobel Peace Prize should just be canceled – Global Times

Since the Nobel Peace Prize has deviated from its original intent and turns to represent just Western values, it’s time to just cancel the prize altogether.

In China, Despair for Cause of Democracy After Nobel Laureate’s Death – The New York Times

Some activists say the movement is now at its weakest point since the Tiananmen Square crackdown in 1989.

After the Shangri-La Dialogue – For China, So What and Now What?

By Tuan N. Pham Singapore hosted the 2017 Shangri-La Dialogue (SLD) from June 2-4. The dialogue was well attended by defense ministers from the United Stat

China’s navy expands reach: Ships in Baltic for drills with Russia –

One of China’s most-advanced warships is leading a small flotilla to the Baltic Sea, where it will engage in exercises with the Russian Navy.

Foreign Policy Reports

Poland defies EU with power grab for supreme court | World | The Times & The Sunday Times

Poland triggered a showdown between eastern and western Europe yesterday when its MPs voted to give parliament the power to appoint supreme court judges, despit

Will the Russians Hack Germany, Too? – To Inform is to Influence

Anna Sauerbrey JULY 21, 2017 BERLIN — There are only nine weeks to go until Germany elects a new Parliament on Sept. 24, and with it, the next chancellor. Right now our eyes are on Angela Merkel, the incumbent, and Martin Schulz, her left-wing challenger. But we’re also watching another player in the campaign, one who has been…


Ankara-Berlin ties hit low amid war of words – EUROPE

Germany cannot continue as it had been in relations with Turkey, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said on July 20, pointing to the need for a new direction in Turkish policy.

The Latest: Turkey says it would reciprocate German threats – The Washington Post

The Latest on relations between Turkey and Germany (all times local):

Strategy Publications

Mark Galeotti | Trump Was Right: NATO Is Obsolete | Foreign Policy

To fight the wars to come, the transatlantic alliance is going to need to start spending more — but not on tanks and fighter jets. Simply having a common benchmark for hybrid defense will inevitably improve the quality of the data. It will also force European countries to do something new to most of them: to consider the whole gamut of nonkinetic defensive measures available, from counterintelligence to media awareness, as part of a single, unified security concept. So it is time to have this conversation. Nonkinetic security spending, just like defense budgets, buys protection on a variety of levels. It blocks malign foreign activities, provides wider ranges of capability and response, and acts as a deterrent. In an age of hybrid war, minimum common standards of hybrid defense are a must.

Gabriel Collins | Russia’s Use of the “Energy Weapon” in Europe – To Inform is to Influence

Russia’s Use of the “Energy Weapon” in Europe Gabriel Collins, J.D., Baker Botts Fellow in Energy & Environmental Regulatory Affairs, Center for Energy Studies “Regardless of how the standoff over Ukraine develops, one lesson is clear: excessive dependence on Russian energy makes Europe weak.” —Donald Tusk, former prime minister of Poland (April 2014) Report:

Sami J. Karam | Capitalism Did Not Win the Cold War | Foreign Affairs

Capitalism’s post–Cold War victory was short-lived. CRONYISM, VICTORIOUS The balance of evidence suggests that if one economic system did win after the fall of Soviet communism, it was not capitalism exported from the West to the rest of the world. Rather, it was cronyism, which spread from the rest of the world to take hold in the United States and in Europe.

Scott Cuomo | Mattis’ “Guardian Angel” and How Marine Corps Aviation Can Get Back on Target

“Humanity is now a predominantly urban species,” observed the authors of last year’s Joint Operating Environment assessment. The Marine Corps’ operating co

IW/IO/Cyber Reports

Russian Capabilities in Electronic Warfare: Plans, Achievements and Expectations – To Inform is to Influence

Publication: Eurasia Daily Monitor Volume: 14 Issue: 95 By: Sergey Sukhankin July 19, 2017 05:25 PM Russia’s Radio-Electronic Technologies Group (KRET), part of the state-owned high-technology corporation Rostec, announced on June 10 that “work on a new gadget that can imitate a group of jets, rockets or a massive missile attack” has entered the final stage.…

Name And Shame: Washington Post Using Russian Propaganda – To Inform is to Influence

Tonight I reviewed this two-day old article in the Washington Post. It contained the following headline: Ukrainian separatists claim to have created a new country: Malorossiya, or ‘Little Russia’ Washington Post, By Adam Taylor 19 July 2017 The article starts out this way: Separatists in eastern Ukraine claimed Tuesday to have founded a new country — Malorossiya, which means “Little…

We Need Cyberwar Rules of Engagement Now – To Inform is to Influence

If the State Department’s Office of the Coordinator for Cyber Issues is not fully empowered, there is a damn good chance these critical negotiations will never be accomplished. Granted, too many people report directly to the Secretary of State already, but cyber is a critical issue now and will only grow in the future.  Cyber is…

Here’s how the US can retaliate against Russian hacking and ‘kick them in the balls’ | Business Insider

Russia stands accused of bold intrusions…

Russia Says In Talks With U.S. On Creating Cybersecurity Workgroup

Moscow and Washington are in negotiations to create a joint cybersecurity working group, Andrei Krutskikh, a special presidential envoy on cybersecurity told Russian news agencies on July 20. &quo…

Merle Maigre to Become Director of the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence – To Inform is to Influence

As of 1 September 2017 Merle Maigre, currently the Security Policy Adviser to the President of Estonia, will assume the role of Director of the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence based in Tallinn. Sven Sakkov, who has been the Director of NATO CCD COE since 2015, was recently appointed as the new Director of International…

What Russia Does Not Want You To See: Kremlin Tops List For Flagging Google Content – To Inform is to Influence

BY DAMIEN SHARKOV ON 7/21/17 AT 8:52 AM Russian President Vladimir Putin is not a fan of the internet. Not long ago he described the worldwide web as a “CIA project” that Russia must be protected from. Meanwhile his government agencies are frenetically scouring Google, flagging and bidding to block more content than the rest of the world combined. Russian state…

Geneva Conventions Apply to Cyberspace: No Need for a ‘Digital Geneva Convention’ – To Inform is to Influence

18 July 2017 Calls for a new international treaty to regulate cyber operations between states are confusing the debate over norms and policy development in cyberspace according to the independent review of Tomáš Minárik and LTC Kris van der Meij, researchers at the NATO CCD COE, a NATO-affiliated cyber defence think-tank. The following analysis does…

Report: Cybercriminals are more threatening than ever before – Fifth Domain | Cyber

Cisco’s Cybersecurity Report annually informs businesses and security teams of the current threats and vulnerabilities to cybersecurity, and the 2017 midyear edition gives experts more reason than ever to be concerned. The pace and sophistication of changes in the cyber landscape has made it difficult for defenders to keep up with the global threat. The continual growth seen in impacts of security breaches as well as the increasing advancement and access to technology by malicious parties are continually undermining their successes. The report details other adversary tactics and vulnerabilities threatening organizations including new developments in malware, weak practices in security, risks of potential unwanted applications, and medical device compromise. The biggest threat, according to the report, is the use of business email compromise (BEC) schemes. These schemes involve a simple email delivery to an employee with the access to wire funds and are typically aimed at big businesses, such as Facebook. The messages sent appear to be from the CEO or other top executives and ask for a transfer of funds from the company to the criminal’s account. These emails do not contain any malware or suspicious links, enabling them to bypass most threat-defense tools. The use of BEC is so expansive that the Internet Crime Complaint Center reports this method of fraud successfully stole $5.3 billion in a little over three years, with nearly 22,300 victims from the United States. Not nearly as widespread as the exploits are the defenses; the report revealed that only 30 percent of public sector organizations surveyed use penetration testing and endpoint/network forensics tools. The small number of organizations using these tools is concerning since these tools are “key pillars of defense-in-depth security strategy,” according to the report. Furthermore, nearly half of the improvements made to an organization’s cybersecurity are reactive rather than risk-based, holistic approaches. Recognizing the constant need for security improvements, the report details different recommendations gleaned by analyzing the key concerns of eight industries. Company size and the affect it has to security approaches is examined, as well as the affects posed by having a shortage of talented, knowledgeable personnel, the risks brought with the Internet of Things, and more.

Russian man who helped develop Citadel malware gets 5 years – Fifth Domain | Cyber

ATLANTA (AP) — A Russian man who helped develop and distribute malicious software designed to steal personal financial information was sentenced Wednesday in Atlanta to serve five years in prison. Mark Vartanyan, also known as “Kolypto,” had pleaded guilty in March to a computer fraud charge after reaching a deal with prosecutors. U.S. District Judge Mark Cohen said Vartanyan would receive credit for time served, including more than two years in a prison in Norway following his arrest there in October 2014. He will be turned over to immigration authorities for deportation once he serves his sentence. Starting in 2011, Citadel was marketed on invite-only, Russian-language internet forums used by cybercriminals, and users targeted the computer networks of major financial and government institutions around the world to steal financial account credentials and personally identifiable information, prosecutors have said. Industry estimates indicate it infected about 11 million computers worldwide and caused more than $500 million in losses. Vartanyan, a native of Moscow, was involved in the development, improvement, maintenance and distribution of Citadel from August 2012 to January 2013 while living in Ukraine and again from April 2014 to June 2014 while living in Norway, prosecutors have said. His attorney said he was working for a healthcare technology company in Norway. Vartanyan didn’t author the malware, federal prosecutor Steven Grimberg told the judge, but “he was, for lack of a better term, the ‘mechanic,’ the person who made it more pernicious.” Prosecutors requested a five-year sentence, much lower than possible, because Vartanyan quickly showed remorse and began helping the government, Grimberg said. Details of his cooperation were not revealed. “I have rarely come across an individual who has been as sorry for his role as Mark Vartanyan,” he said. Nevertheless, Grimberg said, cybercriminals often operate in countries that don’t allow for extradition, so it’s important to send a message that anyone who is caught and prosecuted will serve significant time. Addressing the judge in accented English, Vartanyan said he encountered the Bible in prison and felt an enormous weight lifted when he understood through prayer that he could accept what he’d done and help make things right. “My intention is to see how I can lead this Christian life God showed me outside” of prison, he said. Court-appointed defense attorney Stephen Johnson said Lars Dahle, CEO of Dignio, a remote patient-monitoring company where Vartanyan worked before his arrest, was so impressed by him that he regularly visited Vartanyan while he was in prison in Norway and offered to fly to Atlanta for the sentencing. Norwegian prison officials also vouched for Vartanyan’s character, writing that he’d been helpful to them and other inmates. Jim Lenahen, pastor of a church in Roswell, told the judge that Dahle, an old friend, is eager to rehire Vartanyan once he’s released. He said Dahle asked him to check on Vartanyan in custody, and the pastor was so impressed by his truthfulness and commitment to his newly discovered faith that he took to visiting regularly. Given the seriousness of the crime but also taking into account his quick acceptance of responsibility and cooperation with the government, the judge said five years is appropriate, and he hopes Vartanyan will do good once he’s free. “Sometimes getting into trouble can open up your eyes to a lot of different stuff, and I think it has done that for Mr. Vartanyan,” the judge said, adding: “You made a great start where you are right now in terms of your future life, and I hope that continues outside of prison.”

Lawyer: Russian programmer sought by US is political victim – Fifth Domain | Cyber

MADRID (AP) — The lawyer defending a Russian computer programmer arrested in Spain says flaws in the extradition request by the United States signal a political motivation behind the prosecution. Attorney Juan Manuel Arroyo said accusations that 31-year-old Stanislav Lisov was involved in a network that used a Trojan virus to steal online financial information are an excuse to have him extradited from Spain, where he was detained in January. Lisov is wanted in the U.S. for crimes related to the ‘NeverQuest’ malicious software, which syphoned $855,000 (743,000 euros) from bank clients in the country. Spain’s Civil Guard cooperated with FBI agents in January to arrest Lisov in Barcelona’s airport, when the programmer and his wife were wrapping up their honeymoon. The initial investigation linked the programmer to the rental and purchase of computer servers in France and Germany that controlled a network of computers infected with ‘NeverQuest’ for accessing users’ data and passwords for banking and financial websites. The public prosecutor said during a hearing Thursday at the National Court in Madrid that there’s no evidence of ideological prosecution and asked for Lisov to be handed over to U.S. authorities. The defense argued that there were procedural flaws in the arrest of Lisov and said authorities had failed to establish the programmer’s responsibility in the creation, distribution and use of the virus or the extent of his direct damage in the theft of the data. Arroyo also said Lisov is, together with other Russian computer experts and scientists sought by the U.S., a victim of the diplomatic “chess game” involving Washington and Moscow. “The lack of specifics makes us think that the request is following spurious interests that escape us,” he said, requesting that the extradition be rejected.

Cyber police do not rule out repeat massive virus attack – news portal

Cyber police do not rule out repeat massive virus attack. Only 10 per cent of companies secured their networks after Petya. Political – news portal. Latest from Ukraine and the world today

Interior Ministry to deepen cooperation with France in cyber crime counteraction

Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov and French Ambassador to Ukraine Isabelle Dumont have agreed on the expansion of Ukrainian-French cooperation in the field of civil security and in the field of countering cyber crime.

Ukrainian Interior Ministry to deepen cooperation with France in field of cyber security – 21.07.2017 12:51 — Ukrinform News

21.07.2017 12:51. The Interior Ministry of Ukraine will deepen cooperation with France in the field of cyber security.

China clamping down on use of VPNs to evade Great Firewall – Fifth Domain | Cyber

BEIJING (AP) — China is tightening control over foreign companies’ internet use in a move some worry might disrupt their operations or jeopardize trade secrets as part of a crackdown on technology that allows web surfers to evade Beijing’s online censorship. In a letter to corporate customers seen by The Associated Press, the biggest Chinese internet service provider says virtual private networks, which create encrypted links between computers and can be used to see sites blocked by Beijing’s web filters, will be permitted only to connect to a company’s headquarters abroad. The letter from state-owned China Telecom Ltd. says VPN users are barred from linking to other sites outside China, a change that might block access to news, social media or business services that are obscured by its “Great Firewall.” The letter repeats an announcement from January that only VPNs approved by Chinese authorities are allowed. That has prompted fears of possible loss of trade secrets or information about customers or employees among companies that question the reliability of Chinese encryption services and whether authorities might read messages.

US Domestic Policy Reports

What the Russians were really up to by Paul Danish – To Inform is to Influence

An opinion piece in the Boulder Weekly, of Boulder, Colorado. Paul Danish has some very good points and some good theories. Read it objectively and think about it. It is well written, rather succinct, and rises above the current political fracas. </end editorial> By Paul Danish – July 20, 2017 So did the Russians hack the election, and if so, why, and did Trump collude with them? Here’s what I think will come out of the Russia story when we finally get to the bottom of it. Did the Russians hack the election? It depends on what the meaning of “hack” is.

Peter Savodnik | How Russia Mercilessly Played Trump for a Fool | Vanity Fair

He and his coterie of idiots, nihilists, and opportunists were the perfect prey for Putin’s spell.

Russia’s Lavrov Says Trump May Have Met Putin More Times – NBC News

“They might have met even much more than just three times,” Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told NBC News’ Keir Simmons in an exclusive interview.

Volodymyr Ohryzko | What to expect from new U.S. Ambassador to Russia | UNIAN

Jon Huntsman remains the most probable nominee for the post of the next U.S. Ambassador to Russia. After his nomination was put forward by President Donald Trump, it has yet to be approved by the U.S. Senate. Speaking about what we could expect from Huntsman as a U.S. envoy to Russia, it should be noted that very often in American political practice, it’s not professionals in any given field but “political appointees” who get to occupy diplomatic or government posts. This is because, for centuries, the state apparatus in America has been functioning quite well. That is, the structure clearly knows how to act, enjoys an established system of operations, and there are rules by which this structure functions. And when the administration changes, these operations don’t change in any way. Political priorities do change but this machine keeps working in accordance with the long established rules … …for centuries, the state apparatus in America has been functioning quite well So there are never any worries about the appointment to such positions of people who may not have sufficient training because they are surrounded by a huge number of true professionals, the advisors who at any given moment can help may make a weighted decision. Therefore, there’s no need to be concerned whether the general course remains correct. Even in the case with Donald Trump, all his inadequate statements voiced during the campaign have practically turned into an absolute opposite. Why is that? Well, because the state apparatus and the system of checks and balances, do not allow anyone, even the president, doing stupid things. In my opinion, this is what any democracy should seek: to create an opportunity to adjust anything if it goes beyond reasonable. … there will be no unexpected compromises with Russia in the U.S. position This case is yet another example. Huntsman has already been a governor [Utah] and an ambassador [to China and Singapore]. He has worked with several U.S. presidents. He even was a presidential candidate. That is, Huntsman is a political figure, therefore Trump decided that a political figure of such level and weight will be a completely acceptable choice in order to properly defend U.S. interests in Russia. Given the fact that U.S.-Russia relations have reached their lowest point since the “Cold War” and may deteriorate even further, this post requires a real tough guy, but at the same time, the one who is influential and able to hold their ground and keep a firm stance. So this choice by Donald Trump is no accident. That’s because it demonstrates that there will be no unexpected compromises with Russia in the U.S. position. If the stance towards Russia will remain quite tough, as has been so far (security first and then political decisions, obligations first and the sanctions lift), it will be the best kind of help for Ukraine. Volodymyr Ohryzko is a diplomat, head of the Russian Research Center, ex-Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine

UAWire – Media: Candidate for the post of US Ambassador to Russia owns business in Ukraine

Huntsman has criticized Obama’s proposed policy of “resetting” relations between the US and Russia. At the same time, he has advocated interaction between Washington and Moscow in the sphere of arms control, but insists that the relations between the two states should be viewed more objectively. According to Ukrainian publication Ekonomichna Pravda, companies affiliated with Huntsman are founding shareholders of several large assets in Ukraine. For example, Huntsman International Corporation, which registered in Utah, was a co-owner of the Ukrainian-American joint venture LLC Huntsman-Stirol in the early 2000s. The business partner of the American company for this enterprise was the Horlivka concern Stirol, which at the time was owned by a US citizen of Ukrainian origin, Alexander Rovt. In 2010, the concern Stirol, whose production facilities are located in the separatist-held territory of the Donbas, was bought by Ostchem Holding, which is owned by Dmytro Firtash. Jon Huntsman’s core business in Ukraine is currently represented by the Kyiv LLC Huntsman-NMG, the company through which Huntsman International Corporation is engaged in the sale of chemical products and materials of the Russian ZAO Huntsman-NMG (Obninsk).

Experts Say U.S., West Should Push Back On Russian Corruption, ‘Kleptocracy’

WASHINGTON — Russian corruption is no longer a topic for just the country itself, it is a matter of concern for the United States and the West, says Ilya Zaslavskiy, a research expert at the Fre…

Trump To Nominate Chief Diplomat For European-Eurasian Affairs

U.S. President Donald Trump intends to nominate A. Wess Mitchell, who heads a think tank on Central and Eastern Europe, as assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, the White House announced on July 20. Mitchell, whom the White House described as an expert on NATO and transatlantic relations, founded the Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA) in 2005 and has been its president and CEO since 2009. If approved by the Senate, he will fill a key State Department position that has been vacant since January 20, when Victoria Nuland, who was appointed by President Barack Obama, left the post upon Trump’s inauguration. The office covers a large array of countries, many in potential conflict areas, including the Balkans and the Caucasus. Nuland was considered the point person on the conflict in Ukraine, but those duties have subsequently been split off. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson on July 7 announced that Kurt Volker, Washington’s NATO ambassador under the previous two U.S. administrations, would become the special envoy for the war-torn country. During the 2012 U.S. presidential election, Mitchell served on the national security team for the campaign of Republican candidate Mitt Romney, according to the CEPA website.

Previously Undisclosed Plan to Counter Russian Hacking on Election Day – To Inform is to Influence

Exclusive: Read the Previously Undisclosed Plan to Counter Russian Hacking on Election Day Massimo Calabresi 7:00 AM ET President Obama’s White House quietly produced a plan in October to counter a possible Election Day cyber attack that included extraordinary measures like sending armed federal law enforcement agents to polling places, mobilizing components of the military and launching…

Kremlin Aide Says U.S. Asked Russia About Hacking Before Presidential Vote

A Kremlin aide told Russian news agencies on July 20 that the United States formally asked Moscow for information on its alleged election hacking one week before last year's U.S. presidential vot…

Report: Ex-Trump campaign manager was millions in debt to pro-Russia interests – CBS News

The debt dated before Paul Manafort joined the Trump campaign, according to financial records in Cyprus obtained by The New York Times

Manafort Was in Debt to Pro-Russia Interests, Cyprus Records Show – The New York Times

Business records from the secretive tax haven of Cyprus suggest that Paul J. Manafort owed millions to pro-Russia interests before joining Donald J. Trump’s campaign.

Congress likely to tie Trump’s hands on Russia sanctions – POLITICO

A bill allowing lawmakers to block the president from easing sanctions on Moscow is likely to move forward despite White House resistance.

US conglomerates lobby against Russia sanctions –

The Senate’s Russia sanctions legislation has generated objections from a wide array of US business industries, which have undertaken a lobbying campaign on Capitol Hill to try to make changes to the bill.

U.S. Sanctions Against Russia Never Go Away — They Just Evolve : NPR

When it comes to sanctions, the Cold War never really ended. Even as President Obama lifted Soviet-era sanctions, he imposed new ones. President Trump could soon find a sanctions bill on his desk.

CIA has been tracking Russian interference in U.S. elections since 1982 – To Inform is to Influence

July 19, 2017 Declassified memo shows Agency considered possibility of a Soviet “scheme” to tip the 1984 presidential race Written by Emma Best Edited by JPat Brown A formerly SECRET memo sent to the Director of Central Intelligence in 1982 reveals that the Intelligence Community’s concern with Russian attempts to influence the U.S. Presidential election go back decades.…

Trump officials: Russia meddled in the election | TheHill


Top Intel, Homeland Security officials break with Donald Trump on Russia

President Trump still won’t say whether he believes Russia meddled in the presidential election. But his top homeland security officials affirm it did.

Trump counterterrorism adviser blames Russia for election hacks – To Inform is to Influence

I must add in a few comments. First, Thomas Bossert is not the first in the administration to deviate from the President’s opinion.  But I have never seen a President have an opinion so different from the vast majority of his administration. Disagreement is healthy, but not about Russia. I am also of the opinion…

CIA director: Russia loves to meddle and ‘stick it to America’ | US news | The Guardian

Mike Pompeo describes the US-Russia relationship as complicated but hopes there will be areas where they can cooperate

CIA Director Mike Pompeo: ‘Of course’ Russia interfered in the 2016 election, ‘and the one before that’


‘Russians find any place they can make our lives more difficult’ – CIA chief — RT America

CIA Director Mike Pompeo has downplayed Russia’s role in the Syrian operation, saying there is only “the most minimal evidence” that Russia is pursuing a serious strategy there.

CIA Director Pompeo slams NY Times for outing covert officer | Fox News

CIA Director Mike Pompeo blasted the New York Times Thursday for publishing the name of the undercover officer in charge of the agency’s Iran operations.

CIA director: ‘I don’t love’ Wikileaks | TheHill


The Magnitsky Affair and Russia’s Original Sin | Foreign Policy

Sergei Magnitsky’s death at the hand of the state exposed the rot at the heart of Moscow. Its ripple effects have shaped Russian foreign and domestic policy ever since.

Exxon Mobil Fined for Violating Sanctions on Russia – The New York Times

While Rex W. Tillerson, now the secretary of state, led the energy giant, “Exxon Mobil demonstrated reckless disregard for U.S. sanctions requirements,” the Treasury Department said.

U.S. Treasury Accuses Exxon Mobil Of 2014 Violation Of Russia Sanctions

The U.S. Treasury Department accused Exxon Mobil of violating U.S. sanctions on Russia just weeks after they were imposed in 2014, as it hit the U.S oil and gas giant with a $2 million fine.&nbsp; …

Under Tillerson, Exxon Showed ‘Reckless Disregard’ for Russia Sanctions, Says Treasury – NBC News

Exxon Mobil Corp. showed “reckless disregard” for U.S. sanctions on Russia while Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was the oil giant’s CEO.

A Guide to Russia’s Diplomatic Properties in Washington | Foreign Policy

The Russian Embassy still has buildings spread throughout the nation’s capital, but that wasn’t by grand design. The official emphasized that there was no plan to buy buildings in different parts of the city. Rather, one building predates the 1917 Russian Revolution, and during the Cold War, the Soviet government bought what it could when it could — at market price and with the U.S. government’s approval. Here’s a list of known Russian diplomatic properties in the Washington, D.C., area:

John McCain on Twitter: “I greatly appreciate the outpouring of support – unfortunately for my sparring partners in Congress, I’ll be back soon, so stand-by!”


John McCain’s wife posts ‘Throwback Thursday’ photos following brain tumor diagnosis – ABC News

John McCain’s wife posts ‘Throwback’ photos following tumor diagnosis

McCain Ailing But Still Leading On Defense | Defense content from Aviation Week

One of the leading voices on military matters, the Arizona senator is pushing for more defense funding and assistance for Ukraine.

What Happens If John McCain Leaves the Senate? – NBC News

Sen. John McCain promised Thursday he’ll “be back soon,” but there could be big national political implications if he leaves office after his cancer diagnosis.

Kori Schake | This is Not a Eulogy for John McCain | Foreign Policy

Perhaps no one alive has paid as high a price for the truths we hold to be self-evident as has John McCain. He chose military service as a profession. Offered early release as a prisoner of war by North Vietnam, he kept faith with his fellow POWs and insisted on order of capture release, extending the time of his captivity by years. He might have been president had he indulged back in 2008 in attitudes and political rhetoric that got Donald Trump elected in 2016. McCain is an admirable man, but that’s not what this column is about. I’m not ready to eulogize Senator McCain, and I’m confident he wouldn’t want us to. I had the good fortune of working as senior policy advisor on his 2008 presidential campaign. He can be irascible, has a Vesuvian temper, exhibits no compunction at disparaging those he considers failing in their responsibilities, and thinks his way through problems by arguing about them with voluble tenacity. And I can say without hesitation that I admired him more at the end of the campaign than I did when I took the job.

Five Stories That Show Why People Love John McCain – POLITICO Magazine

<p>There was something different about the torrent of grief, well-wishes and wistful anecdotes that greeted John McCain when his staff announced late Wednesday night that the Arizona senator had been diagnosed with brain cancer. </p>

Many Treatment Options, Most Experimental, Available to John McCain | Top News | US News

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