Deleted Olena Bilozerska video: Ukrainian Sniper Kills Several Russian Terrorists I have a wee bit of heartburn about this video, as it is dated 2012. This may be the default date on the video recorder, however. Higher Resolution from her own site: http://bilozerska.info/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/nich.mp4
Zapad 2017 remains a major media theme. Boris declares UK will defend Nordic and Baltic states from Russia. Russian provocation against Japan. Poland may claim reparations from Russia. SBU Chief Hrytsak details Russian Wagner PMC, founded and operated by a turncoat Ukrainian.
COCW Award goes to the formidable Vasyl Hrytsak, Head of the SBU, for his very direct challenge to the Head of the Russian FSB, Alexander Bortnikov. Piontkovsky comments on Putin losing face over Crimea. Whitmore on new restrictive legislation. Piontkovsky comments on Putin’s folly with Russification, while Kagansky comments on regional fragmentation – both trends mutually reinforce. More on the Islamization of Russia. Many more articles on Russia’s ongoing descent.
Russian speaking Belarusians become a threat to Russia. More on FSB kidnapping of Ukrainian teen. Belarusians ridicule Zapad 2017 format – COCW.
Lethal aid debate continues in Ukraine. SBU breaks up major FSB operated urban terrorist cell in Kharkiv, arresting 18 Russian covert ops personnel – it seems Russia is determined to compete with ISIS in urban terrorism. Donbass fires almost triple overnight but costing the Russians 7 KIA and 18 WIA. Olena Bilozerska, former journalist and parliamentary candidate for the Right Sector, best known for rescuing warzone puppies and kittens, retrained as a DUK militia sniper and scores two night kills against a Russian infiltration team using a thermal imaging scope (likely on a Zbroyar Z-08 or Z-10) on the night of Independence Day – video on her website but Youtube removed the posted copy. Briefing on Voronenkov assassination imminent. UATV release five excellent short documentaries on Ukrainian history and resistance to Russia – pity Western MSM will be too lazy to watch them.
Iran claimed to be making threats against USAF U-2 and MQ-4 ISR platforms, likely involving recently delivered S-300PMU2 / SA-20B GARGOYLE systems.
An MSM deluge on the DPRK, mostly speculative, or explainers, much of poor quality. JASDF deploys T-4 with sniffer pod to attempt sample collection that may determine what kind of device was actually tested. Politics remains unclear, Western MSM interpret the test as an intentional insult aimed at China, following Global Times article weeks ago threatening to rescind mutual defense pact if the DPRK continues with tests. China complains about proposed secondary sanctions. Russia grandstands again, arguing the US should fold. RoK backflips on THAADs. China is in a sense self-entrapped in the politics, trying earlier to maintain an ambiguous position to maximise its political gain at the expense of the US. It appears the hardliners in Beijing seem unable to accept the reality that the DPRK is now as much of a risk to the PRC as it is to the RoK and Japan – to accept this means they would have to concede that the DPRK is a bigger threat / risk than the US, Japan and RoK, which sinks years of propaganda and posturing, and would require cooperation with propaganda designated opponents. What a wonderful dilemma they have made for themselves, by promoting toxic make-belief about Japan, the US and the RoK, instead of ground truths.
In Germany, Merkel (CDU/CSU) “trounces” Schultz (SDP) in TV debate, 55% vs 35%, confirming what polls indicate. If the SDP crashes during the election, and the CDU/CSU wins a majority, Merkel will have much more flexibility in dealing with Russia problems, not having to accommodate the intensively pro-Russian SDP leadership.
Excellent essay by Telenko on the politically driven historical revisionism around the A-bomb use in 1945. TNI essay on the failed defence of the Philipines in WW2.
Russian consulates remain a major US domestic theme.
Russia / Russophone Reports
Sunday, September 3, 2017 4:00:47 PM Russian President Vladimir Putin is increasingly afraid of the Ukrainian army as it is getting stronger. This opinion was expressed by the former Commander of the Polish Land Forces and Deputy Minister of National Defense of the Republic of Poland, Waldemar Skrzypczak, in the commentary section of Ukrinform. “Ukraine…
Russian President Vladimir Putin is increasingly afraid of the Ukrainian army as it is getting stronger. This opinion was expressed by the former Commander of the Polish Land Forces and Deputy Minister of National Defense of the Republic of Poland, Waldemar Skrzypczak, in the commentary section of Ukrinform. “Ukraine can be afraid of some actions [during the Zapad-2017 exercises], which will in no small part weaken the Ukrainian army. In my opinion, Putin fears the Ukrainian army more than ever, as its strength increases and it is now already in a position to fight off Luhansk and Donetsk from the separatists ,” the Polish military expert said. In his opinion, the US and other Western countries do not provide Ukraine security guarantees, which could encourage President Putin toward aggressive actions, in particular during the Zapad-2017 exercises. “The transfer of Russia’s first tank army to Belarus is dangerous for the center of Ukraine. In the event of an aggravation of the situation, the Russians can make a blow from the north, splitting Ukraine into two parts, punching the corridor into Transnistria and trying to create a separatist government in Kyiv,” Skrzypczak noted. According to the expert, it is not so important whether after the exercise some Russian troops will remain in Belarus, since the Belarusian army is already de facto part of Russia, and the border between Belarus and Russia is purely formal. “It is not a problem if the Russian tank army remains in Brest, but it is a problem if it accumulates fuel or ammunition stocks, or if reservists are mobilized. If someone wants war, then these supplies and ammunition should already be there; if they are not there, then the troops will come and go,” stated the former Commander of the Polish Land Forces, warning to be afraid if such evidence were revealed.
The Zapad 2017 exercises have a broader context than it has been announced by Russia. They have the goal of preparing the Russian forces for offensive action, and are a threat both to NATO and to the states of the post-Soviet space, stated Viktor Muzhenko, Chief of the General Staff and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, as reported by the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense. “We are considering various scenarios of enemy action, including offensive action,” he noted. According to Muzhenko, the total number of participants in the Russian drills could reach 230-240,000. Of them, roughly 100,000 will be in the south-western strategic area, including 70,000 armed forces soldiers and up to 30,000 other employees of the Russian security forces. The head of the Defense Ministry added that the composition of the forces which will be involved in the drills will enable Russia to deploy powerful attack groups both in the south-west and in the western strategic areas, and to establish the conditions for their continued use. “This objectively serves as a precondition for the emergence of a military threat of wide-scale Russian armed aggression, both against Ukraine and against NATO states. The occasion for the start of the aggression, despite the unpredictability of Russia’s top military and political leadership, could be, for example, massive provocation both in the territory of the Eastern provinces of Ukraine and in the Baltic States regarding infringements of the rights and freedoms or threats to the safety of the Russian-speaking population,” Muzhenko explained. Earlier on Sunday, President Petro Poroshenko said that Russia and Belarus’s Zapad 2017 military exercises threaten Ukraine. As reported, the Armed Forces of Ukraine are conducting command and staff exercises in parallel with the drills in Belarus. The maneuvers will take place between the 12th and the 15th of September.
FOREIGN Secretary Boris has said he remains committed to Nordic and Baltic defence after Brexit against Russian “aggression”.
Britain has declared it will protect Nordic and Baltic states from “Russian antagonism” after it left the EU. Nato “unity” will “never be broken” it said.
Moscow should fulfil its international obligations to be transparent
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexei Meshkov has called ungrounded accusations by NATO toward Russia in connection with the Russian-Belarusian joint military exercise Zapad-2017 (West-2017), RIA Novosti reports. News 04 September from UNIAN.
When Putin meets Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe this week, the two leaders will discuss an island dispute that spans decades.
Poland may demand war reparations from the Russian Federation, as stated by the Deputy Minister of Justice, Patryk Jaki, Radio Poland reports. “Russia should be responsible for what they did to Poland,” Jaki said. At the same time, a Deputy from the ruling Law and Justice party, Jan Mosinski, explained that the matter concerns payments under the Riga Treaty of 1921. According to this document, Poland was to be paid 30 million rubles in gold, but this amount was never transferred to Poland. Earlier the Prime Minister of Poland declared the right of the country to receive reparations from Germany for the damage inflicted during World War II. However, Germany, referring to the expert opinion of the analytical service of the Bundestag, noted that they do not see grounds for the payment of reparations to Poland. In particular, Germany refers to the fact that the claims became invalid after the signing of the Treaty on the Final Settlement with Respect to Germany in 1990, in the course of which Poland did not file claims for reparations.
04.09.17 16:24 -SBU head Vasyl Hrytsak disclosed information about participation of Wagner’s (Utkin) private military company in the war. Hrytsak told on air of Priamyi TV channel, Censor.NET reports. “‘Wagner’s group’ was created in late May 2014. Wagner is former citizen [of Ukraine – ed.], born in the Kirovohrad region. Back then his group comprised 10 people. They credit themselves, as far as we know, with the downing of Ukrainian Il-76 with paratroopers above Luhansk,” SBU chief said. “By late August 2014 they were 300 people. In 2015, 1,350 men of Wagner were sent to Syria. Subsequently, the group grew, and more than 1,000 mercenaries were sent to Syria. They were taken back after three months. In early 2016, they were sent to Syria again. They had been reinforced. Now they are being dragged out of Syria,” Hrytsak said. “Wagner’s PMC comprises highly professional former Spetsnaz representatives who will be used primarily by the Russian military leadership in situations where they will not be able to officially use the army. At first, 10 people ran in. Now, according to our data, there are about 5,000 of them. We are working in this direction, we managed to establish identities of more than 1,400 soldiers of Wagner’s PMC,” said Hrytsak. The head of the Security Service stressed that such a grouping is actually a powerful private pocket army operating tanks, armored personnel carriers, BM-21 Grads, and heavy artillery. “They’ve created a powerful pocket army operating tanks, armored personnel carriers, BM-21 Grads, and heavy artillery. What does it look like? It looks like a private army of Putin. If the situation destabilizes, God forbid, in Belarus or Baltics states or Moldova, the first to go there wearing civilian clothing will be the representatives of Wagner PMC. This is why we’re working on identifying these people, members of Wagner PMC, to make this information public so that our partners in Europe knew them personally. We are thus strengthening European security,” Hrytsak said.
Head of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) Vasyl Hrytsak appealed to the head of the Federal Security Service (FSB) of the Russian Federation Alexander Bortnikov with a demand to stop plotting terrorist acts on the territory of Ukraine, RBC reports. Moscow is looking for an opportunity to launch a full-scale military operation, while Russian special services have “exponentially” intensified their efforts in Ukraine, RBC reports. “I appeal to you as an officer to an officer. Even in the conditions of war, there are rules that cannot be violated by operatives of security forces. You have crossed all possible lines. Both you and I know that the special services’ operatives are complicit in the organization of terrorist acts in Ukraine’s Odesa, Kharkiv, Kherson, and other cities,” said Hrytsak, noting that as a result of the attacks “dozens of people died and many were injured.” According to the SBU chief, Russia, by organizing terrorist attacks, Russia is looking for an excuse to launch a full-scale military operation in Ukraine. Hrytsak has urged his Russian counterpart to halt such efforts. “You’ve crossed the red line. You were ready to blow up your own Russian citizens in order to destabilize the situation in Russia and give grounds for invading Ukraine and launching a full-scale campaign. Do you fully understand the geopolitical implications of these actions? Do you realize that you will have to answer for these actions? Do you understand that today’s political leadership, including Putin, is not forever? the head of the SBU asked FSB’s Bortnikov. [http://www.rbc.ru/politics/04/09/2017/59ac7abe9a794721a66819d8#xtor=AL-%5Binternal_traffic%5D–%5Brss.rbc.ru%5D-%5Btop_stories_brief_news%5D]
04.09.17 13:14 – Head of the Security Service of Ukraine Vasyl Hrytsak has addressed Russian FSB director Alexander Bortnikov with a request to stop their activities that might destabilize the situation in Russia and give Russian military a reason to launch a full scale military campaign against Ukraine. Censor.NET reports citing Priamyi Kanal. “Alexander Vasilyevich, I am addressing you as an officer addresses an officer. Even at war, there are some rules that cannot be violated by secret services employees. You have crossed all the lines that could ever be crossed. Both you and I know that the terrorist attacks in Ukraine – in Odesa, in Kharkiv, in Kherson – involved, the organization of them involved employees of the secret services. Dozens of people were killed, many were wounded,” Hrytsak said. “But this time, you’ve crossed the red line. You were ready to blow up your Russian citizens just to destabilize the situation in Russia and get the reasons for invasion in Ukraine, for a start of a full-scale campaign. Do you realize what geopolitical consequences these acts might have led to? Do you realize you will have to be held responsible for these acts? Do you realize that current political authorities, including Putin, are not for good? Do you realize how many curses your children will receive? You have the power to stop it all,” the head of the SBU said. “This is the point of my address. Believe me, I will never give an order to organize terrorist attacks in Russia against civilians,” Hrytsak said.
Yesterday the head of the SBU appealed to the head of the FSB, “Putin won’t last forever”. “I appeal to you as an officer to an officer. Even in the conditions of war, there are rules that cannot be violated by operatives of security forces. You have crossed all possible lines. Both you and I know that the special services’ operatives are complicit in the organization of terrorist acts in Ukraine’s Odesa, Kharkiv, Kherson, and other cities,” said Hrytsak, noting that as a result of the attacks “dozens of people died and many were injured.”
04.09.17 13:14 – SBU Head Hrytsak blamed FSB of terrorism in Ukraine: Russian secret services involved in terrorist attacks in Odesa, Kharkiv, and Kherson, dozens of people killed … View news.
Russian political scientist and journalist Andrey Piontkovsky in an interview with the Ukrainian news portal Apostrophe has said that a significant part of Russia's political elite would agree that the Russian forces withdraw from Donbas only if the world community turns a blind eye to the Crimea occupation. “But it’s very difficult to do that while Putin is alive because he would lose face. So it’s obvious that there is a gap between Putin and the majority of the ruling elite,” Piontkovsky told Apostrophe. However, the West will never recognize the legal annexation of Crimea by Russia, he said. He also drew attention to the fact that the issues of power distribution in Russia had always been decided behind the scenes rather than at elections. “These two processes, namely the ultimatum on the part the West on the one hand and the need for the authorities to take a decision on the other raise a rather serious issue among the Kremlin’s top leadership. And now it’s hard to say how it will develop,” the political scientist said.
The average life expectancy of a man in Russia is 65.9 years but employees of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the country die much earlier, …
So don’t look now, but Russia may be about to get yet another law that will allow Vladimir Putin’s regime to prosecute its own citizens for just about anything. According to a report in this morning’s edition of the pro-Kremlin daily Izvestia, which is one of the regime’s key mouthpieces, the Federation Council is working on legislation to deal with “undesirable behavior.” The details of the bill are still being worked out, but the Izvestia report says it would provide for the expulsion of foreigners and the prosecution of Russians who act in any way that harms national security. Viewed one way, the legislation follows up on previous laws requiring NGOs that receive foreign funding to register as so-called foreign agents and on laws providing for the banning of foreign NGOs deemed to be “undesirable organizations.” WATCH Today’s Daily Vertical If passed, it could also have a chilling effect on how foreign journalists cover Russia. But this is not just about controlling foreigners. Like previous laws on extremism and on insulting religious believers — which have been implemented very broadly to suit the needs of the authorities — this new legislation would give Putin’s Kremlin a new tool to harass and prosecute it domestic opponents. In many ways, it appears to resemble the infamous Article 70 of Russia’s Soviet-era Criminal Code, which prohibited “agitation or propaganda aimed at subverting or weakening Soviet authority.” According to Izvestia, the legislation should be introduced to the State Duma in early 2018 — just in time for the presidential elections in March. And it’s yet another example of how deeply insecure the Putin regime is after nearly 18 years in power.
ON MY MIND So we’ve had laws requiring NGOs that receive foreign funding to register as “foreign agents.” We have laws providing for the banning of foreign NGOs deemed “undesirable organizations.” We have broadly interpreted laws providing for the prosecution of “extremism” and “insulting religious believers.” And now, the Kremlin mouthpiece Izvestia is reporting that the Federation Council is drafting legislation prohibiting so-called “undesirable behavior.” (The Izvestia piece is featured below.) Under the law, foreigners who behave in a way that harms Russia’s national security could be expelled. And Russians who behave in a way that harms national security could be prosecuted. On today’s Power Vertical Briefing, we look at what this might mean, so be sure to tune in. I also give my initial take on the potential legislation on today’s Daily Vertical.
Russia may be about to get yet another law that will allow Vladimir Putin’s regime to prosecute its own citizens for just about anything. Listen to The Power Vertical Briefing to find out what it means.
Russian lawmakers are examining possible new legislation envisioning the deportation of foreigners who engage in "undesirable" behavior deemed to be interference in the country'…
After Russian President Vladimir Putin, speaking to Moscow students on Friday, predicted that whichever country leads the way in AI research will come to dominate global affairs, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk offered an alarming suggestion. “China, Russia, soon all countries w strong computer science. Competition for AI superiority at national level most likely cause of WW3 imo,” Elon Musk tweeted, responding to an earlier article on the Verge quoting Vladimir Putin as saying that nation that leads in artificial intelligence ‘will be the ruler of the world.’ Recently, Elon Musk and 116 other technology leaders sent a petition to the United Nations calling for new regulations on how such AI weapons are developed. The group stated that the introduction of autonomous technology would be tantamount to a “third revolution in warfare,” following the development of gunpowder and nuclear weapons. The development of artificial intelligence has increasingly become a national security concern in recent years. It is China and the US (not Russia) which are seen as the two frontrunners, with China recently announcing its ambition to become the global leader in AI research by 2030. Many analysts warn that America is in danger of falling behind, especially as the Trump administration prepares to cut funding for basic science and technology research. Although it’s thought that artificial intelligence will help boost countries’ economies in a number of areas, from heavy industry to medical research, AI technology will also be useful in warfare. Artificial intelligence can be used to develop cyber weapons, and control autonomous tools like drone swarms — fleets of low-cost quadcopters with a shared ‘brain’ that can be used for surveillance as well as attacking opponents.
The Russian president warned that artificial intelligence offers ‘colossal opportunities’ as well as dangers
Paul Goble Staunton, September 3 – The Russian Empire fell apart twice in the 20th century, in 1917 and then again in 1991; and it is likely to fall apart a third time in the coming years because Vladimir Putin is making a mistake Vladimir Lenin did not – seeking to formally impose a Great Russia on all its non-Russian components, Andrey Piontkovsky says. When the Russian Empire fell apart in 1917, the Russian commentator notes, “the leaders of the White Movement experienced [that] as a national catastrophe” because they “completely sincerely considered” the non-Russian regions of the country to be “part of Great Russia” (svoboda.org/a/28699593.html). But their “principled position had only one shortcoming: they were not supported by Ukrainians, Caucasians or Balts or indeed by any of the non-Russian peoples of Russia” because none of them could tolerate the idea of “Great Russia.” And that allowed the Reds to win because they “promised everything to everyone and entered into all kinds of tactical alliances.” Having defeated the Whites, Piontkovsky continues, Lenin and the Bolsheviks “quite rapidly implemented his program of ‘one and indivisible’ by restoring almost entirely the Russian Empire.” They were able to do so because they never sought to impose the “absolutely alien and empty” idea of Great Russia on the non-Russians. Instead, they promised “social justice and the liberation of the oppressed toilers. It is not important that the idea turned out to be false and its implementation criminal. This became clear later. But at the time, it districted millions of people independent of their nationality … and played the role of a genuine new religion.” Andrey Amalrik, the author of Will the Soviet Union Survive Until 1984? was right when he asserted that “the acceptance of communism extended the existence of the Russian Empire for several decades.” Had that idea not been spread, Piontkovsky says, “the USSR could have fallen apart a little earlier or a little later.” “But when the communist religion died in the souls [of the Soviet population], the Russian commentator says, “the Soviet theocratic empire was condemned to death.” That is something Putin and his regime do not understand and consequently they are driving everyone away from it. The only thing the current regime can offer is something no one wants, Piontkovsky says, including “pompous talk about its greatness, its historical imperial mission, the sacredness of Khersones,” and so on. “But this drivel isn’t of interest to anyone,” and now across the post-Soviet space, including inside Russia, the much ballyhooed “’Russian world’” has failed utterly. This “Nazi-like” notion has suffered “two most serious metaphysical defeats,” the Russian commentator continues. On the one hand, “it was rejected by the overwhelming majority of the ethnic Russian population of Ukraine which remained loyal to the Ukrainian state and its European choice. And on the other, “it has not received any serious support inside Russia itself.” “The collective wailing” of Russia’s so-called elites about the denigration of their country has become “a self-fulfilling prophecy” given that “Russia entered in relation to Ukraine in the most denigrating role of an impotent rapist.” In short, Lenin understand what was necessary to hold the empire together. Putin doesn’t – and so the empire will continue to fall apart.
Paul Goble Staunton, September 2 – Vladimir Kagansky, a Russian economic geographer, says that in the absence of real politics, “the only opposition in Russia are the regions,” and that regionalization of the country, something he argues is irreversible, will lead to the country’s decolonization and de-ideologization. In his The Cultural Landscape and Soviet Habitable Space (in Russian; Moscow: NLO, 2001), Kazansky outlines the challenges that any Russian leader would face in trying to rein in the challenges to the territorial integrity of the country given the “chaotic” nature of its space. (Excerpts are now found at ttolk.ru/2017/08/31/владимир-каганский-хаос-российского/.) The main institutions holding the USSR and now the Russian Federation together are the force structures and the military-industrial complex which cut across the administrative and regional divisions of the country. “For the authorities of Russia today, the regions are an opposition,” but the regions cannot win out in the short term, Kagansky says. Over time, however, “the regionalization of the Russian Federation is already an irreversible process. The main distinction from the regionalization of the USSR is the absence [in Russia] of a region which is able to claim and genially control ‘the indivisible inheritance’ (Moscow’s pretenses in this regard are insufficiently funded).” Writing just before Putin came to power, the geographer offers a spectrum of five scenarios for this regionalist process: 1. “Revenge (USSR), restoration, re-militarization, attempts at military control over the main part of the USSR, permanent conflicts.” 2. “A world of regions and a center-mediator” in Moscow which “plays the role of mediator between the regions of the Russian Federation, the CIS countries, the rest of the world, and the armed forces. The functions of the center are financial, judicial, and formally legal.” 3. “The Russian Federation as a rickety superstructure over regions that are independent in varying degrees and in part states preserving control over strategic forces.” 4. “A minimal Russia. The preservation of the Russian Federation as a state on a small part of the former territory with the rest being independent. The outlines of ‘the new Russia’ will be defined by the dislocation of strategic forces, the resource-industrial base, and conflicts with the regions.” 5. “Each region for itself. A multitude of practically independent equal state regions (including coalitions) without a center. Moscow will be converted into a city state.” This situation will also be “unstable.” More generally, Kazansky says, the process of regionalization is destabilizing, but that destabilization will have the effect not of limiting it but of accelerating the process. And consequently, regionalization “will continue, involving both new levels of the hierarchy and also new territories which for the time being have only weakly manifested this trend.” All this is because, the geographer argues, “the Russian space is a Great Semi-Periphery, that is, a sum of border regions.” It includes within its borders the peripheries of various other projects but has no real center of its own. Thus, “the phenomena are within the Russian space, but their focus is outside its borders.” This “poly-periphery is also a syncretic one,” he says. It doesn’t have natural borders, a natural center – “Moscow is 20 times closer to the Western border than to the Eastern one. In fact, “all the leading centers of the territory are situated in its border regions and/or borders but are poorly connected with each other.” The radical centralism of the Russian state is incompatible over time with this arrangement. The state is not held together by tight bindings. And Kazansky concludes that “the general construction of the Russian space is a carcass of several powerful centers connected hierarchically. An external ring and an internal deposit of centers.” Or to put it in a more lapidary way, Russia has “centers on the periphery and a periphery in the center.”
Paul Goble Staunton, September 3 – There is no legal definition of what “a native Muscovite” is but that has not quieted discussions as to just who is and who is not, especially at a time of the largest in-migration into the Russian capital in its history, according to Russian scholars who have examined the question. Some historians say that “no more than 10 percent of the population of Moscow should be called ‘indigenous Muscovites,’” but estimates range widely depending on whether anyone born there is one or whether he or she must be able to trace ancestors there back six or even more generations (xx-football.com/archives/11459). The site of Moscow was first settled at the end of the first millennium CE, initially by Finno-Ugric peoples who gave it its name, and then by Slavic tribes like the Vyatichi and Krivichi. Beginning in the second half of the 12th century, the city began to assume its central role not only because of the intersection of transportation routes but also because of state policy. Since that time, Moscow has been flooded with immigrants at some points – as when the Golden Horde made its advances or when Novgorod was conquered and suppressed by Ivan the Terrible – and has lost population – as during the oprichnik period, the Livonian war, and the Time of Troubles. Beginning in the 18th century, Europeans began to arrive; and after the end of serfdom, peasants from rural areas. As a result of all these changes, experts say, about 20 percent of Moscow’s population at the end of the 19th century consisted not only of non-native Muscovites but of non-Russians. Since 1917, Moscow’s population has changed even more: During the Civil War and World War II, it lost a large segment of its permanent population; and Muscovites formed more than 20 percent of Soviet citizens who emigrated from the USSR at the end of Soviet times. But an influx of people almost doubled the size of the city between 1956 and 1991. The Soviet authorities restricted who could come by the propiska system; but despite that, many non-Muscovite and non-Russians formed their own diasporas or landschaftsman organizations. Since 1991, the registration system has broken down, and in-migration from Central Asia and the Trans-Caucasus has expanded. Between 1989 – the year of the last Soviet census – and 2010 – the date of the second Russian one – the number of Azerbaijanis in Moscow rose 500 percent, Chechens 700 percent and Tajiks 1200 percent. There was also a significant influx of Vietnamese and Chinese into Moscow. As a result, “the share of the ‘non-Russian’ population in certain districts of Moscow now exceeds 30 percent,” a development that has triggered anti-immigrant attitudes and more concerns about defining who is a Muscovite and who is not and even led to the notion that there should be a “Moscow codex” to guide new arrivals on how to behave. That hasn’t solved the problem; instead, it is a reflection of the continuing turbulence of the population of the Russian capital.
Paul Goble Staunton, September 2 – Speaking to the All-Russian Parents Assembly at the end of last week, Russian Education Minister Olga Vasilyeva said that requiring pupils in the non-Russian republics of the Russian Federation to study non-Russian languages doesn’t “by itself” violate the rights of the pupils or their parents. The standard, she said, is that such study must not take time away from the study of Russian, the state language of the country, or represent an obstacle to taking examinations to enter higher education institutions (regnum.ru/news/2315517.htmland nazaccent.ru/content/25202-vasileva-obyazatelnoe-izuchenie-gosudarstvennyh-nacionalnyh-yazykov.html). Meeting that standard may not be achievable: if the number of hours of Russian instruction is maintained at all-Russian levels, the only way to have enough hours for instruction in the non-Russian languages would be to cut reduce the time spent studying other subjects and thus making it more difficult for pupils to score well on the entrance examinations. But Vasilyeva’s words nonetheless represent a clear departure from the way in which many Russians have read Vladimir Putin’s declaration about Russian-language instruction and appear to reflect the desire of some in Moscow to calm anger among non-Russians about his attack on their languages. Indeed, the education minister went out of her way to be both reasonable and reassuring to the non-Russians: “We have a multi-national and multi-confessional country,” she said. “It seems to me that it is not entirely correct if you are born and live on the territory of Bashkortostan or Tatarstan and do not know the language” of the titular nationality. The education minister is clearly facing pressure from both sides in this debate. On the one hand, some Russian speakers are demanding a tough line against any study of the non-Russian languages by Russians who don’t want to, believing that is what Putin has promised (nazaccent.ru/content/25184-rossijskomu-ministru-obrazovaniya-pozhalovalis-na-izuchenie.html). But on the other, many non-Russians have protested against efforts to make the study of their languages entirely voluntary, viewing that as a direct threat to their national futures (idelreal.org/a/28709194.html, idelreal.org/a/bashkirskiy-yazik-v-bashkortostane-2017/28706980.html and business-gazeta.ru/article/356220). For the former, Vasiliyeva’s words will likely be viewed as a betrayal; for the latter, a concession to their interests and rights. In any case, the declaration of the education minister ensures that the debate about non-Russian languages and the requirements that residents in the republics study them is likely to intensify in the weeks ahead.
Paul Goble Staunton, September 3 – Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, whose communist regime severely restricted the ability of Muslims there to make the pilgrimage to Mecca required of most of the faithful, approximately 300,000 members of the Islamic community from Russia have made the haj, including some 23,000 this year alone. Ilyas Umakhanov, deputy chairman of the Federation Council and the Russian government’s point man for haj affairs, tells Rossiiskaya gazeta that this number reflects the fact that so few Muslims from the USSR were able to go before 1991 (rg.ru/2017/08/31/ilias-umahanov-podavliaiushchee-bolshinstvo-musulman-zakonoposlushnye-liudi.html). “In the Soviet period,” he says, “the majority of believers were deprived of the chance to make the haj: the number of pilgrims according to some accounts annually numbered approximately 20,” even though the total Muslim population of the USSR was “more than 50 million.” (In fact, although Umakhanov doesn’t mention it, small groups of Soviet Muslims visited Mecca in the 1920s and then again after World War II. But for many years in between no one was allowed to go at all. And in many cases, those who were permitted to do so were subsequently identified as having close ties to the Soviet security agencies.) With the end of “the iron curtain,” he says, ever more Muslims in Russia and other former Soviet republics demanded the chance to go. In 1990, approximately 1500 Muslims from throughout the USSR did so. Later the numbers grew almost exponentially: by the early 2000s, Muslims from Russia alone numbered more than 16,000 annually. Until recently, the quota the Saudis assigned Russia – based on a calculation of one haji per year per 1,000 Muslims – was insufficient to meet demand, Umakhonov says, a situation exacerbated when Riyadh cut back the numbers during the reconstruction of facilities in the last several years and imposed new limits on those making repeat pilgrimages. This year, the Russian Muslim leader says, “more than 23,000 Muslims from more than 70 regions of Russia” will make the haj. Once Moscow has the quota from the Saudis, it assigns quotas for each region. More than half of this year’s hajis will come from the North Caucasus republics of Daghestan and Chechnya alone. The figure of 300,000 is remarkable because it means that more than one percent of Russia’s Muslims have made the required pilgrimage at some point over the last 25 years. And that in turn means that almost all Muslims in Russia have contact with a haji, a remarkable turnabout from Soviet times that opens them to influences in the broader Muslim world.
Thousands of people rallied in the capital of Russia's North Caucasus region of Chechnya to express support for the Muslim Rohingya minority in Burma, also known as Myanmar. The September …
Paul Goble Staunton, September 2 – Two hundred thousand Muslims, most from Central Asia and most relatively young, took part in Kurban Bayram celebrations in the city of Moscow yesterday, easily “eclipsing” the first day of school and highlighting just how Islamic the Russian capital has become, the URA n.ews agency said (ura.news/news/1052302693). (An additional quarter million Muslims were projected to mark the holiday in Moscow oblast where many gastarbeiters now live, bringing the total number of Islamic celebrants in the capital region to more than 400,000 (rg.ru/2017/08/29/reg-cfo/kurban-bajram-v-moskve-i-podmoskove-vstretiat-400-tysiach-musulman.html).) Not only were many in Moscow elsewhere angry about the fact that the authorities rescheduled the openings of schools near the mosques of the capital, but residents were also upset that they had to make long detours around the crowds to get where they normally were able to go more quickly and directly. If the Muscovites were aware, they might also have been upset by the fact that when the ceremonies began at 7:00 am, Muslim leaders read out messages of official greetings from President Vladimir Putin, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, and Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin. The overwhelming majority of those attending the services were young people, some of whom did not know the required prayers or even the meaning of the holiday and had to ask their elders for guidance. Many took pictures with their cellphones to send home to show people in Central Asia that Kurban Bayram in Moscow is marked in a serious way. The URA.ru correspondent surveyed the opinion of residents nearby after the services were over – the Muslims had to travel to the suburbs to one of the sites where animal sacrifices were permitted – and got an earful from non-Muslims about all this. One local woman complained that “after they built this mosque, it became impossible to live here.” She and many others also expressed anger about the fact that the school opening seemed “less important to the authorities than a Muslim holiday.” But one elderly Russian woman proved an exception. She said that “religion is important. If opening day had been shifted because of an Orthodox holiday, no one would have gotten upset.”
Paul Goble Staunton, September 2 – In Soviet times, it was sometimes said, there was no sex; but there was at least in many periods sex education in the schools. But in post-Soviet times, there appears to be even more sex, although there is no sex education in the schools as a result of enormous parental opposition to it. As journalist Yuliya Dudkina of Medusa points out, “in contrast to the majority of Western countries, there is no sex education in the schools in Russia” and consequently, there are serious problems with unwanted pregnancies, the spread of HIV and other STDs, and massive ignorance about sex (meduza.io/feature/2017/09/01/vmesto-polovogo-vospitaniya-polovoy-razvrat). At the beginning of the Soviet period, sex education was a basic part of the school curriculum; but with Stalin’s turn to traditionalism, that ended. Homosexuality was made a criminal offense in 1934, abortions were banned in 1936, and the same year, pedology, which included sex education, was labelled “a pseudo-science” and banned as well. Sex education classes began to appear at the end of the 1960s largely as a result of urbanization, and in 1983, two obligatory classes were introduced for those in the eighth, tenth and eleventh grades. But at the end of the 1980s, for various reasons, these were dropped in most places. After 1991, Russian President Boris Yeltsin promulgated a federal program for children which included family planning lectures; and in 15 regions, “schools began to conduct experimental classes on sex education,” Dudkina says. But by 1997, conservative parents and conservative media had succeeded in cancelling this effort. Since that time, there hasn’t been any formal sex education in Russian schools despite the fact that in 2014, the Duma ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Children which calls for sex education of teenagers. Conservative parents, however, have pledged that there will “never” be any sex education and use a 2012 law on the defense of children to enforce their will. The Putin government isn’t willing to challenge there: Education Minister Olga Vasiliyeva, for example, says that “sex education of young people must be carried out by parents” not by the schools or anyone else. And she has overseen cutbacks in public campaigns to fight HIV/AIDS and other STDs. Efforts by some activists to change the situation face enormous opposition from “conservative parents organizations” which exist in most Russian regions and which regularly complain to prosecutors and demand that school programs be checked so that sex education is not introduced on the sly. These regional organizations came together in 2006 to form the All-Russian Parents Assembly, which pursues the same goals and works against any efforts at sex education outside of the family. To that end, the leaders of this group insist the HIV/AIDS is a myth rather than a plague against which all must struggle. Some parents do support sex education, as do some teachers. One journalist, Tatyana Nikonova, has used crowd-funding to raise money to publish a textbook called “The Science of Sex for Youths.” So far, she has collected 1.2 million rubles (20,000 US dollars). But for her efforts, she has been savagely attacked. On Komsomolskaya Pravda radio, she says, conservative Duma deputy Vitaly Milonov described her as “a fascist” who must not be allowed to have any contact with children. But given the importance of her effort, Nikonova says, she believes that his attack is “the best advertisement for my project.”
Paul Goble Staunton, September 2 – Rarely does a day go by when there isn’t one or another Russian anniversary that at least some take note of, but often the most important lessons of the events being remembered are ignored or downplayed even though they say a great deal about where Russia is not only in the past but now as well. Three such anniversaries recalled in recent days that have important lessons for the future include: · The 13th anniversary of the Beslan Events. The most important lesson is that despite the high profile nature of that crime, no one has been punished for it in the intervening period and no serious provisions have been introduced in Russian law to help the victims of that attack and their relatives (kasparov.ru/material.php?id=59A9C1D3B18DB and kavkaz-uzel.eu/articles/308927/). · The 21st anniversary of the signing of the Khasavyurt accords which put an end to the first post-Soviet Chechen war. That accord which could have been a road map to a peaceful future in the North Caucasus not only was vitiated by Moscow’s failure to live up to a single one of its provisions but also by Vladimir Putin’s blowing up of Russian apartment buildings in 1999 to restart the Chechen war and boost himself into the Russian presidency (kavkaz-uzel.eu/articles/308807/). · The 77th anniversary of the forcible annexation of the Baltic countries by Stalin on the basis of the secret protocols of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact. In a new book, Moscow television journalist Leonid Parfenov observes that at that time “the Kremlin proceeded toward annexation step by step, seeking until the last moment not to reveal its true goal” (meduza.io/feature/2017/09/03/namedni-zahvat-pribaltiki-i-rio-rita).
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Although most of the Belarusians speak Russian, they not only do not associate themselves with Russia, but also unequivocally call themselves citizens of their country. On the phenomenon of Russian-speaking Belarusian patriotism. Most of the residents of Belarus speak Russian today. The Belarusian language, which, along with the Russian, is a state language in the republic, is understood by almost all citizens of the country. Many use it situationally – in communication with Belarusian-speaking friends and colleagues. Constantly – at home, at home, at work – in the Belarusian says the minority. Nevertheless, according to the last population census conducted in 2009, 60% of the country’s inhabitants named the Belarusian native. How is this possible? Is it possible to be a Byelorussian without knowing or knowing Belarus, but without talking about it? With this issue, DW turned to experts. Do you know Brazilian or Venezuelan? To the phenomenon “you can be a Belarusian without knowing the Belorussian or not speaking it”, according to the Belarusian philosopher and writer Valentin Akudovich, should be treated in the same way as the phenomenon of Irish speaking English or the Austrians with their German. “Do you know Brazilian or Venezuelan?” – Asked the rhetorical question the head of the Belarusian analytical workshop sociologist Andrei Vardomatsky. He shares the opinion of those who consider language to be a strong, but not the only indicator of national identity: “After all, there are enough certain and Brazilian, and Austrian, and Venezuelan, and Irish identity.” In the case of Belarus, of course, there are also their own fundamental features. Here, Akudovich states, never spoke only one language. In addition to the Belarusian, which for the last several centuries has been the language of mostly rural people, the Polish and Russian languages were widely represented in Belarus. At the same time, Polish sought to polonize the Belarusians, and Russian – Russify. “Obviously,” notes Akudovich, “the second turned out better in the end, and today most of the Belarusians speak exactly in Russian.” Identity indicators According to sociologist Vardomatsky, the most important indicator of identity is subjective self-identification. “A person can live anywhere, talk in any language, grow in any cultural tradition, but at the same time consider himself subjectively representative of a certain nation,” he notes. Examples, according to the expert, it is enough – including among the well-known characters. So, in the family of a recognized classic of Belarusian literature Maxim Bogdanovich spoke in Russian, he, however, considered himself a Byelorussian and wrote his works in the Belarusian language. Traditionally, five criteria of national identity are singled out: community of history, culture, language, territorial community and socio-psychological similarities of people’s behavior. “As for the specificity of the Belarusian identity, then, if we choose between two types – cultural and territorial identity, at the moment Belarus has formed a type of identity that can be called territorially-statist,” Vardomatsky explains. In contrast, for example, from Poland, where identity is cultural and historical. According to a poll conducted by the Novak Laboratory of Axiometric Research in Belarus, the question “What is the most interesting thing about you with people of your nationality?” 35.6% of the respondents chose the option “territory, land”, the answer “state” – 30.9%. The poll was conducted in 2009, but the situation is unlikely to have changed much, Vardomatsky believes. Blurred, but identity Many experts are inclined to believe that the basic trend in the formation of national identity in Belarus was the formation of a sovereign Belarusian state after the collapse of the USSR. “Never before, the Belarusians did not have their own state, hence the blurred identity that is only now beginning to acquire clear forms, but the process of nation-building continues, therefore, language problems remain extremely important and relevant,” says the Belarusian philosopher and writer Valentin Akudovich. This process is influenced by the events of the recent past. So, before the Second World War, Belarusian intelligentsia was practically destroyed in the Belarusian SSR, which was part of the USSR, says Maxim Zhdankov, a philosopher and culturologist. In addition, after the war in the USSR, a powerful migration system was created due to the organization of global projects like Komsomol construction sites, distributions of specialists and the like. As a result, people from different regions of the Union turned up in Belarus. According to Zhbankov, the main result of the past years – after Belarus gained its sovereignty in 1991 – lies in the fact that – due to an objective change in the social order and the circumstances connected with it – even 100% Russian-speaking people who live in Belarus do not associate themselves with Russia, but have a very clear attachment “to here and now.” “And this is the Republic of Belarus,” he said.
Most commentaries on Belarus and Ukraine suggest that the relatively large Russian-speaking populations in these two countries are a threat to their survival because they make it easier for Moscow to manipulate the domestic situation of the two and that the growth of Belarusian and Ukrainian speakers thus benefits these countries and harms Russia. While those may be reasonable conclusions for Belarusians and Ukrainians under certain circumstances, they ignore the way Russian-speaking Belarusian and Ukrainian patriots, people who identify with Belarus and Ukraine, represent a serious threat to Moscow and to Vladimir Putin’s largely linguistically defined “Russian world.” Indeed, the existence of Russian-speaking countries besides Russia represents a threat to the maintenance of the territorial integrity of the Russian Federation itself because they serve to notice that just as there are many English-speaking countries in the world, there could be many Russian speaking ones as well, including Siberians, Far Easterners and so on.
The father of the Ukrainian patriot, who went missing in Belarus, revealed the new details of the case. Ukrainian Pavel Hryb, who disappeared in Belarus, was on the wanted list of Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB). UNN reported this on September 4 with a reference to the father of the missing youngster, Ukrainian military officer Ihor Hryb. Searching for his son, he addressed to the Belarusian frontier guards, asking for help. “They invited me to get in the car, show my passport, and then checked my backpack and made sure I was the same person I claimed I was. They also asked me to show additional documents, I introduced myself, said I was a reserve officer of the state frontier service of Ukraine, showed them this document; and a Belarusian officer, in my presence, input the data of my son into his tablet PC, and I spotted the following information appearing on the screen: Pavel Hryb, born 1.07.1998, on the wanted list under the Article 205 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. The initiator of the retrieval is the FSB of the Russian Federation in the Krasnodar Territory and the city of Sochi,” — Hryb informed. Herein, the Belarusian frontier guards did not detain his son under this resolution. The driver confirmed the information that none of the passengers of the bus on which Hryb’s son had been going to Belarus, was put off. Hryb suggests that if the frontier guards broke the rules, someone had ordered them to do it. Important to note, the journalists found out earlier that the Ukrainian who got missing in Belarus could be held at the FSB in Krasnodar, Russia.
Pavel Grib’s father demands from the Russian Federation to provide him with the information on his son’s whereabouts. The family of disappeared Ukrainian citizen Pavel Grib had appealed to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) and intended to appeal to the entire international community, his sister Olga Grib stated, telegraf.com.ua writes. “We also applied to European institutions, in particular, to the European Court of Human Rights, and they were petitioned in accordance with rule 39 on violation of the Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms,” – she said at a briefing on Monday. Olga Grib noted that basic rights and freedoms have been violated in relation to her brother: the right to life, dignity, freedom of activity and expression of one’s views. The family has also appealed to the International Committee of the Red Cross, and on Tuesday they intend to appeal to the entire international community, in particular, the neighboring countries, the UN, the OSCE. Lawyer Evgenia Zakrevskaya clarifies that on Saturday the family applied to the ECHR in order to take urgent measures under the rule 39 (preliminary judicial measures), when the ECHR indicates to the parties preliminary measures which, in the Chamber’s opinion, should be taken in the interests of the parties or proper implementation of the ongoing investigation. “We believe that the Russian Federation violates Pavel Grib’s rights such as the right to freedom, the right to non-use of torture and there is a threat to his life, there is a direct threat to his life,” – the lawyer says. She stresses that P. Grib’s health condition is extremely complex and there is a threat of internal bleeding and death. The father of missing Igor Grib read out the family’s demands to Russia: to provide the family and the lawyer with comprehensive information about Pavel’s whereabouts, the charges brought against him, the state of health, and also provide him access to treatment, the consul of Ukraine and an independent lawyer. The family calls Belarus to ensure proper investigation of P. Grib’s disappearance, to cooperate with Ukrainian law enforcers and provide them with the necessary materials. The family demands from Ukraine to ensure the investigation of the disappearance, to demand from Russia to allow access to P. Grib for the consul or the Commissioner for Human Rights of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.
Citizens of Veyshnoria addressed to Belarusians. The official address of the Ministry of Defense of Veyshnoria to the citizens of Belarus was published on the Internet today: “Fellows! Belarusians! A threat is hanging over our country again. But the enemies must know: Veyshnoria is ready to defend Belarus. Belarus and Veyshnoria were, are and will be together! The Ministry of Defense of Veyshnoria opens a military enlistment office on September 8 in the Kastrychnitskaya Square in Minsk. Come to the Square in camouflage or a military style outfit. Join the ranks of the Homeland defenders! Long Live Veyshnoria! Long Live Belarus!”
Published on Sep 3, 2017 Guys! Over our country once again under threat. But enemies must know: Veyshnoryya ready to defend Belarus! Belarus and Veyshnoryya were, are and will be together. The Ministry of Defense recruitment office Veyshnoryi opens Sept. 8 on October Square in Minsk. Come at 19 o’clock in camouflage clothing or style of “military” Get up in the ranks of the defenders of the Fatherland. Veyshnoryya lives! Long Live Belarus!
Transnistria / Moldova Reports
The withdrawal of the Russian military from Transnistria was initiated by those who want a war between Russia, Ukraine and Moldova, stated Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov during his conversation with MGIMO (Moscow State University) students. “I do not think that we can predict a war. Nobody wants this, except for those who were directing the hand of representatives of the Moldovan government, when they wrote a statement on the need to withdraw our military personnel from Transnistria. Those who suggested this to the Moldovan government want a war between us and Ukraine, between us and Moldova,” Lavrov said. Lavrov is certain that those who “prompt Moldova to such actions, hamper the work of the 5 + 2 format.” He asserted that “They do not want a settlement; they want to do something unpleasant for the Russian Federation, slip us another crisis situation.” According to Lavrov, this is “a policy of restraining Russia.” He insists that Russian servicemen are in Transnistria on the basis of agreements signed soon after “it became possible to put out the hot phase of the conflict in the early 1990s, thanks to the Russian army.”
Kurt Volker additionally confirmed that the US administration was “seriously considering” whether to change its position and ship deadly weapons to Ukraine. Vitalii Rybak for UkraineWorld group (ukraineworld.org) Kurt Volker, the newly appointed US Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations additionally confirmed in an interview for Financial Times that the US administration was “seriously considering” whether to change its position and ship deadly weapons to Ukraine. However, the possibility of such development remains unclear. Provision of lethal weapons to Ukraine by the US has been a hot topic since the very beginning of the war in Donbas. The biggest supporters of Ukraine (for instance, US senator John McCain), have been urging the US President to give Ukraine means to defend itself since spring 2014. Even though the US administration agreed to provide defensive equipment for Ukrainian army in September 2014, lethal weapons were not on this list. President Obama refused to include weapons in the aid package despite Petro Poroshenko’s plea to the Congress. Josh Earnest, the White House press secretary, said then that President Obama believed negotiations to be the best way to solve Ukraine crisis. However, on 9 February 2015 Barack Obama has announced that his administration is studying the option of supplying lethal defensive arms to Ukraine if diplomacy fails to end the crisis in the east. Nevertheless, no decision was made, despite the ongoing support of Congress.The US administration said that it would provide another $75 million in nonlethal aid to Ukraine’s military instead. The issue of lethal weapons has been ongoing in course of the next few years, as Ukrainian side constantly urged Western partners to provide more substantial assistance. Right now it is on the rise again, as James Mattis, the US Secretary of Defense, stated that the Trump administration is considering the issue of providing Ukraine with defensive lethal weapons once again.
On the eve of a possible positive decision by the United States to provide lethal aid to Ukraine, MP Dmytro Tymchuk, who also leads the Information Resistance online community, elaborated on the issue of American ATGMs, which is being criticized by certain "military experts." “’Military experts’ should be aware that there is no fifth generation of ATGMs. And neither there is the fourth generation. There are only three of them in the world today. Javelins are the third generation. Its two main features: the principle of “shoot and forget” and the possibility of hitting an armored target from above (where the armor is the weakest),” Tymchuk wrote on Facebook. The deputy says that the Ukrainian defense industry produces only second-generation ATGMs (Stugna and Korsar). Read more on UNIAN: https://www.unian.info/politics/2114599-expert-busts-myths-regarding-supplies-of-javelins-to-ukraine.html“’Military experts’ should be aware that there is no fifth generation of ATGMs. And neither there is the fourth generation. There are only three of them in the world today. Javelins are the third generation. Its two main features: the principle of “shoot and forget” and the possibility of hitting an armored target from above (where the armor is the weakest),” Tymchuk wrote on Facebook. The deputy says that the Ukrainian defense industry produces only second-generation ATGMs (Stugna and Korsar). “This does not mean that we have poor designers. This means that for a quarter of a century – since the beginning of Independence – the Ukrainian defense industry was the unloved daughter of the Ukrainian government,” Tymchuk stressed. “The meaning of getting the Javelins for the Armed Forces of Ukraine is the principle of coercion of Russians in Donbas to implementing Minsk agreements. If every Rostov-Buryat schmuck realizes that you can’t just go out in your T-72 tank deployed from the Urals to shoot with impunity at the positions of the Armed Forces, these agreements that are now in a state of a permanent coma might as well start working,” Tymchuk said.
18 master spies of Russian intelligence detained in Kharkiv. The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) detained big station of the Russian intelligence in Kharkiv on August 17. The Head of SBU Vasyl Grytsak reported this at the airing of Pryamy TV Channel. ‘The big station of the Russian intelligence that consisted of 18 people was recently detained on August 17 in Kharkiv. Seven of them are already served with the charge papers 16 searches were held. They held the sabotage and reconnaissance activity in our territory, Grytsak said. According to him, the spy master of the station relates to the Russian intelligence. ‘He was in Belgorod and controlled the activity of the station in our country’, the Head of SBU said. Moreover, Grytsak said that the SBU documents one more station that held the similar activity.
The situation in eastern Ukraine has escalated as militants launched 44 attacks on positions of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in Donbas over the past day.
Russia's hybrid military forces attacked Ukrainian army positions in Donbas 44 times in the past 24 hours, with one Ukrainian soldier reported as wounded in action (WIA), according to the press service of the Anti-Terrorist Operation (ATO) Headquarters. News 04 September from UNIAN.
Donbas: Russian mercenaries lose seven fighters over day, another 18 were wounded, says Ukraine’s Defense Ministry. Illegal armed gangs, the Russian mercenaries who fight the Ukrainian forces in Donbas suffered seven fatalities over the last 24 hours. Andriy Lysenko, the spokesman of Ukraine’s defense ministry said that at the Monday briefing in Kyiv. ‘The military intelligence reported that seven enemy fighters lost their lives; another 18 were wounded. Most of these casualties took place in the Mariupol sector,’ Lysenko said. The official added that one Ukrainian soldier was wounded over the last 24 hours.
The arrested militant told Security Service officers about his activities in detail
04.09.17 10:27 – Two 200s, one 300: Sniper of Ukrainian Volunteer Army Bilozerska prevented terrorist provocations in ATO area. VIDEO A female sniper of the Ukrainian Volunteer Army Olena Bilozerska killed two terrorists in the Donbas as they attempted to launch provocations on Independence Day of Ukraine, Aug. 24. A female sniper of the Ukrainian Volunteer Army Olena Bilozerska killed two terrorists in the Donbas as they attempted to launch provocations on Independence Day of Ukraine, Aug. 24. MP Dmytro Yarosh wrote on Facebook, Censor.NET reports. “I am revealing some secrets. Olena Bilozerska is a unique and great woman: an active participant of the Maidans, a talented journalist, a great wife and true friend. Olena is a volunteer. Olena has been at the war since the very beginning. Unfortunately, people like her are a few. Olena is a founder of the volunteer movement and the Person who participates in decision making regarding War and Peace. “Olena Bilozerska is also a sniper. Exercising her Right and fulfilling her obligations, she destroys the enemies of Ukraine… Sniper of the Ukrainian Volunteer Army Olena Bilozerska. The hero of the Russian-Ukrainian war. Not fictional. A real one,” she wrote. “On the video: two 200s [killed – ed.], one 300 [wounded – ed.]. The army has confirmed. The position has been changed. Olena agreed for publication,” Yarosh wrote. “And one more thing. We, volunteer fighters, have not disappeared from the war, despite the wishes… Of course, the attempts of some generals, together with the Russians, to liquidate us have been annoying. But here I report in full voice, we – volunteer fighters – are at the war until the Victory, until all Ukrainian territories are liberated,” Yarosh summed up. [https://www.facebook.com/dyastrub/posts/1479345652142314?pnref=story]
The enemies were going to congratulate us on the occasion of Independence Day of Ukraine, but we noticed it and managed to congratulate them earlier …
In eastern Ukraine, daily tasks as simple as going to the market can mean lining up for hours at military checkpoints. Farmers routinely haul carts of vegetables into separatist-controlled territory, where their produce can fetch twice the usual price. (RFE/RL’s Ukrainian Service)
President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko signed a decree introducing biometric controls for foreign citizens’ entry and exit. The decree also added …
“The lessons we learned from our Ukrainian partners were substantial. It was a real eye-opener on the absolute need to look at ourselves critically,” Col. Gregory Anderson, who commissioned the report earlier this year during his stint as the brigade’s commander, told Politico after it had obtained a copy of the report. “We felt compelled to write about our experiences and pass on what we saw and learned.” The report has so far been distributed only through internal channels to the Army staff and other military headquarters. This is Obama’s true legacy: stretch the military thin and leave a mess for his successor to clean up. No, he did not start the wars in Iraq or Afghanistan. He mismanaged them. He turned victory into defeat in Iraq. As for Afghanistan, Obama called it the real war. He did not win it, though.
Murder of ex-State Duma MP Voronenkov is effectively solved. The murder of the former MP of the Russian State Duma Denis Voronenkov is effectively solved and the results will be revealed soon. The Deputy of the General Prosecutor on in International and Judicial Cooperation Evgen Enin claimed this as INSIDER reported. ‘It is effectively solved and as soon as the interests of the investigation allow us we will reveal the results to the society. I can only say that a final point is almost put concerning this murder’, he noted. According to him, the key points of the crime are known for the investigation. The former MP of the Russian State Duma Denis Voronenkov was shot in the downtown of Kyiv on March 23 at the intersection of Pushkinska and Shevchenko streets near the hotel ‘Premier Palace’. The body guard of the former MP injured the attacker. The medical workers tried to save the life of the shooter but he died in the hospital. The shooter is the citizen of Ukraine, born in 1988 Pavlo Parshov. He was born in Sevastopol and was enlisted by the Russian special services and had the aim to infiltrate the Armed Forces of Ukraine or National Guard. The Holosiivo District Court of Kyiv extended the pre-trial restriction in terms of detention for 36-years old citizen of Pavlograd, Dnipropetrovsk Region Yaroslav Tarasenko on August 10. He was detained on suspicion of implication in the murder of Voronenkov. He is accused of intentional homicide committed by the previous concert, group of persons and provided by the part two, article 115 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.
Racers from around the region came to the Ukrainian town of Uzhhorod for the Eastern European Cup Drone Racing Championships. (RFE/RL’s Ukrainian Service)
The brother of former Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili is facing deportation from Ukraine on allegations that he was in the country illegally, a move that comes amid a fierce standoff betwee…
UATV English Published on Sep 4, 2017 Ukrainians gained the right to be called Russian noblemen only in the 1780s. The majority of them were appointed to high positions in Russian institutions, were given Russian high ranks and built prosperous careers.
UATV English Published on Sep 4, 2017 In the 17-18th centuries, Ukraine existed as an independent state formation within the Russian Empire, which was ruled by the hetman. In 1764, Russian Empress Catherine II issued a decree on its liquidation. A year later, in 1765, the Cossack system in Slobozhanshchyna was liquidated. And on April 23, 1775, the Russian Empress ordered the liquidation of the Zaporizhzhya Sich. To prevent widespread dissatisfaction of Ukrainians, it was decided to make the Cossack senior officers part of the Russian nobility. However, despite the firm stance of Catherine II, the thoughts of the return of the Hetmanate did not fade amongst the former Cossack senior officers.
UATV English Published on Sep 4, 2017 100 years ago in 1917, the Ukrainian Revolution began. It transformed not only into a struggle with internal problems but also with a foreign enemy.
During the national liberation struggle of 1917-1921, Ukraine was in a difficult situation, which no European country had experienced in modern history. With the collapse of power and complete anarchy, the army of the young Ukrainian People’s Republic was opposed by the military forces of the Bolsheviks, the White Guard, Poland and the military-political bloc of the Entente. Each of the fighting sides had its own aggressive plans about Ukraine.
The Ukrainian national revolution, which began 100 years ago in March 1917, opened up new names of personalities of that time. A worthy place in this list is occupied by Oleksandr Shulhin, the first head of the Foreign Policy Department of Ukraine. He had the difficult task of justifying the presence of Ukraine in European politics.
On the same day in 1965, Vasyl Stus began his human rights protection activity, for which he not only was forced to terminate his scientist’s career, but also persecuted and later convicted. Exactly 32 years ago, on the night of September 4, Ukrainian poet, translator, literary critic and human rights activist Vasyl Stus perished in the punishment cell of the Russian colony for political prisoners, known as Perm-36, not even reaching 48 years old. Today, all Ukraine with bitterness remembers the hard life of the poet. But the date is memorable not only because of this tragedy. Active human rights defender On such autumn day as today, but exactly two decades earlier, that is, on September 4, 1965, Vasyl Stus, at that time a graduate of the Donetsk Pedagogical Institute, a graduate student of the Institute of Literature, was among the participants of the first public demonstration in Kyiv of the film “Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors”. A few days before the premiere in Ukraine, there was a wave of arrests of intelligentsia representatives. So the regime that came after a period of certain democratization caused by the Khrushchev thaw reacted to the growth of civic consciousness of thinking people. Ivan Dziuba, now a well-known writer in the world and then a graduate student of Kyiv Literature Institute and Vyacheslav Chornovil, a well-known and, unfortunately, already deceased politician who at that time worked as a journalist decided to take advantage of the film’s popularity. According to official program of the show, in its finale the author of the film, Sergei Paradzhanov held speech. After him, Ivan Dziuba appeared on the stage. However, after a few compliments to the film and its creators, the literary scholar urged the public to stand up against mass arrests among the Ukrainian intelligentsia and named all prisoners of dissidents by name. Several people, among whom, of course, there were several KGB men, tried to push the speaker out of the scene. At the same time, Viacheslav Chornovil called on those present to rise from their seats in solidarity with the arrested. This initiative, as Oles Serhienko later reported (witness and participant of the events, a political prisoner of the Soviet era), was supported by one third of the audience.
Russia / Iran / Syria / Iraq / OEF Reports
Iran’s air defenses have forced an approaching U.S. spy plane and a reconnaissance drone to change course near its air space over the past six months, a military official was quoted as saying on Sunday .
Chinese-American Xiyue Wang was imprisoned in July for “collaborating with foreign governments”.
Syrian state media reports say the military and allied forces are closing in on the eastern city of Deir al-Zour, which has been besieged by the extremist group Islamic State (IS) for three years. …
UN says 87,000 members of persecuted Muslim community have crossed into Bangladesh since violence erupted on August 25.
DPRK / PRC / WESTPAC Reports
China says it won’t allow North Korea tensions to turn into outright conflict, but it’s clear meaningful dialogue is broken, Michael Ivanovitch says.
North Korea’s most recent missile test and the prospect of any Western intervention is a huge dilemma for China, David Marsh, managing director and co-founder at OMFIF, said.
The test sent both physical and political shockwaves through northeast Asia.
The confluence of the latest North Korean detonation with a major appearance by President Xi Jinping of China was a message to Mr. Xi, analysts say.
South Korean President Moon Jae-in has urged for the “strongest possible” response to North Korea’s claim that it tested a hydrogen bomb. CNBC’s Chery Kang reports.
Russia is ready to take part in talks to try to solve the North Korean issue but has yet to see any positive impact from sanctions against Pyongyang, a Kremlin spokesman said on Sunday.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said on Monday any clumsy steps regarding North Korea could make the situation worse and a political resolution was needed for the crisis.
U.S. President Donald Trump took Beijing to task (again) after North Korea’s sixth and most powerful nuclear detonation. But it was his criticism of a key ally that got all the attention.Trump’s charge that South Korea is seeking to appease Kim Jong Un drew an immediate rebuttal from President Moon Jae-in, who favors talks. What’s more, Moon has said, any strike on North Korea should be his decision, not Trump’s.
U.S. President Donald Trump accused Washington’s closest regional ally South Korea of “appeasement” after North Korea’s nuclear test.
China says Trump’s trade threat over N. Korea ‘unacceptable’
China should stop exporting crude oil to North Korea after Pyongyang defied the international community by testing a nuclear bomb on Sunday, experts said.
North Korea’s latest nuclear test has prompted the U.S. to prepare new measures against Kim Jong Un’s regime. But what can they target now?
The Latest on North Korea’s nuclear test and the world reaction (all times local):
One day after its biggest nuclear test, North Korea showed signs of preparing for another missile launch, a South Korean defense official said.
North Korea put on an extraordinary two-part show of its nuclear ambitions, releasing photos of leader Kim Jong Un next to what it described as a hydrogen bomb for an intercontinental ballistic missile,…
The North’s sixth nuclear test on Sunday was its most powerful yet, but it was unclear whether it had in fact detonated a hydrogen bomb.
Pentagon chief says US could totally annihilate North Korea, but does not want to do so; Trump suggests possible use of nuclear weapons
North Korea conducted its sixth nuclear test, accompanied by a demand that the United States abandon its “hostile policy” toward North Korea. This directly defies President Donald Trump’s warnings that North Korean threats would be met with “fire and fury.”
South Korea is ready to install four more launchers to complete the deployment of a controversial U.S. missile-defense system to counter the growing threat from the North, the defense ministry said Monday.
North Korea tested a hydrogen bomb on Sunday, raising fears that Pyongyang is getting close to constructing a nuclear-tipped missile that could reach the US.
The North Korea nuclear crisis is exposing the reality of US decline and the growing limitations of its ability to shape the strategic environment in northeast Asia.
Pyongyang’s latest test isn’t the great leap forward it purports to be.
North Korea wants the security and prestige of nuclear weapons. It won’t give them up.
The Japanese government adopted to implement a special radiological survey (collection of radioactive dust and noble gases) after North Korea detonated a hydrogen bomb sparking a powerful 6.3 magnitude earthquake. The test was estimated to have a yield of 100 kilotons, meaning a blast that was four to five times more powerful than the explosion in Nagasaki, Japan, in 1945, a South Korean defense official told the country’s Yonhap News Agency. “Based on an instruction from the Minister of Defense and an agreement reached at the Liaison Meeting for Radiological Countermeasures, the Ministry of Defense will implement a special radiological survey (collection of radioactive dust and noble gases) from September 3 until a date to be indicated separately” said on report of Japanese Ministry of Defense. The Japanese military has radiological detection equipment in some of its jets as well. The Japanese Air Force has T-4 intermediate jet trainer aircraft that will be measuring the air samples near the Korean Peninsula to confirm the presence of radioactive particles in the atmosphere and confirm the nuclear test.
At approximately 03:30 UTC (noon DPRK time) on September 3, 2017 North Korea’s Nuclear Weapons Institute conducted its largest and long-expected 6th nuclear weapons test from the Punggye-ri Nuclear Test Facility. Initial reporting from the US Geological Survey (USGS) first claimed the magnitude to be 5.2, but quickly upgraded the event to magnitude 6.3. Other seismological agencies including the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) and the independent Norwegian Research Organization (NORSAR) determined the magnitude to have been 5.8. While multiple preliminary seismic readings will need to be refined over the upcoming days, if this lower number is correct, NORSAR calculated that the yield of the test device would be about 120 kilotons (or about eight times the yield of the bomb dropped on Hiroshima in 1945, and about six times that of the 5th test conducted at Punggye-ri on September 9, 2016).
What are the implications of North Korea’s claims to have detonated a thermonuclear weapon?
Unusually large test explosions like Sunday’s North Korean blast can be achieved in many ways, making the field of atomic forensics difficult for distant experts.
Within hours of North Korea’s latest underground nuclear test, Japan and South Korea were both able to independently confirm it had happened. How?
NORTH KOREA is poised to deliver a devastating blow to the United States economy with a series of high-tech electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attacks, which would plunge the world into chaos, claims the BBC’s foreign affairs editor.
North Korea has threatened to launch an electromagnetic pulse attack that could shut down the United States’ power grid — causing month
It is beyond trite at this point to say that the relationship between the United States and China is the world’s most geopolitically significant one, now and for the foreseeable future. Nonetheless, it’s no less true for being so frequently repeated. This year has seen a flurry of new books examining the relationship and grappling with both its history and its future prospects. The titles alone demonstrate the urgency of the issue, most notably with Graham Allison’s Destined for War: Can America and China Escape Thucydides’s Trap?, which expands the argument from his worthwhile 2015 article in The Atlantic. Allison emphasizes a historical approach, much inspired by the statecraft and advice of no less a statesman than Henry Kissinger himself, who has been advocating that students of foreign policy spend more time studying both history and philosophy. In a similar vein, Howard French’s recent Everything Under the Heavens: How the Past Helps Shape China’s Push for Global Power seeks to inform readers thinking about policy by recounting its history. Both of these are useful and well-reviewed, notably in The New Yorker and Foreign Affairs, along with a slew of other recent releases, offering further proof that it’s definitely time to have your own diagnosis of the US-China question ready for cross-examination over beers at the next Right Arm Night. While both of the abovementioned books serve their readers well, more might be gained by putting aside the policy debate for a moment and instead embarking on a narrower but deeper inquiry into China’s recent past. Historian Robert Bickers’s Out of China: How the Chinese Ended the Era of Western Domination is decidedly not a policy book. Instead of drawing straight lines from the trials and tribulations of China’s “century of humiliation” to its modern-day foreign policy, Bickers focuses his effort on detailing what happened during the last hundred years in China and how that experience has created the particular nationalism of the Chinese people and the Chinese government. His method is classically historical, proceeding mostly chronologically and weaving the critical events together while relaying colorfully obscure anecdotes and re-animating the China of the twentieth century.
Foreign Policy Reports
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Angela Merkel has been judged by viewers to be the more credible candidate following the election debate with her SPD rival, Martin Schulz. DW looks at the candidates’ positions on the key domestic and global issues.
Merkel defeats Schulz in TV debates; German politicians run for the Chancellor’s office; Merkel leads the way, media say. After the TV debates between leaders of the German election campaign, Chancellor Angela Merkel leads Martin Schulz, the ex-president of the European Parliament. Deutsche Welle reported that on Monday. The TV duel between the two candidates took place on Sunday, September 3; the politicians talked through various issues, like the EU migration crisis, German-Turkish relations, North Korean aggression and U.S. administration’s role in this regard. According to the news agency, TV viewers found Merkel more persuasive than her opponent. 55 percent voted for the incumbent Chancellor, while 35 supported Schulz, according to the survey conducted by Infratest-dimap think-tank. The survey was ordered by ARD, the German TV channel. It’s the first time Merkel claimed victory with such a big advantage.After the TV debates between leaders of the German election campaign, Chancellor Angela Merkel leads Martin Schulz, the ex-president of the European Parliament. Deutsche Welle reported that on Monday. The TV duel between the two candidates took place on Sunday, September 3; the politicians talked through various issues, like the EU migration crisis, German-Turkish relations, North Korean aggression and U.S. administration’s role in this regard. According to the news agency, TV viewers found Merkel more persuasive than her opponent. 55 percent voted for the incumbent Chancellor, while 35 supported Schulz, according to the survey conducted by Infratest-dimap think-tank. The survey was ordered by ARD, the German TV channel. It’s the first time Merkel claimed victory with such a big advantage.
The EU’s chief negotiator says it is his job to teach the UK about the cost of leaving the bloc.
Tens of thousands of people leave their homes in Germany’s biggest post war evacuation.
Strategy / History / Capability Publications
Posted by Trent Telenko on September 2nd, 2017 (All posts by Trent Telenko) Happy Victory over Japan Day! On August 14th in 1945 Imperial Japan accepted the terms of the Potsdam Declaration and averted Operation Downfall, the two stage invasion of Japan. On Sept 2, 1945 the surrender was signed on the USS Missouri in Tokyo bay, This invasion would have resulted in at least a million American casualties (see below) and likely millions of Japanese dead from direct effects of the invasion plus the mass starvation that would have been sure to occur in its aftermath. Since August 2010, it has become an eight years and counting tradition (See link list at the end of this post) for the Chicagoboyz web site to commemorate the major events closing out World War II in the Pacific and address the leftist agitprop surrounding those events. Where the worst recorded war in human history became a nuclear war via the August 6th and 9th 1945 A-bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, followed by the Imperial Japanese acceptance of the terms of the Potsdam Declaration, and the Sept 2, 1945 formal surrender on the battleship USS Missouri. This years year’s Chicagoboyz commemoration will focus on the academic “revisionist history” controversies regards American casualties in an invasion of Japan versus the use of two Atomic Bombs. The controversy traces from the rise of the leftist “Atomic Diplomacy” revisionism in 1946-1965. Atomic Diplomacy’s subsequent credibility collapse of “Atomic Diplomacy” historical underpinning in the 1995 Smithsonian Enola Gay Exhibit controversy. Its enshrinement as a leftist academic virtue signaling cult in the aftermath.
Tokyo’s attack did not come as a total surprise: war had been in the air for months before December 8.
1 September 2017 | News and analysis, Top Story Denmark and Sweden will cooperate in the field of hybrid threats, and there will be a strong focus on the problem with fake news and disinformation. This was the message in an op-ed published on Wednesday by the two countries’ defence ministers in the Swedish daily newspaper Aftonbladet under…
Yet CCTV is allowed everywhere. </end editorial> Hong Kong scraps 24-hour BBC World Service radio channel despite criticism James Pomfret HONG KONG (Reuters) – Hong Kong’s public broadcaster RTHK dropped a 24-hour BBC World Service channel from its airwaves on Monday, replacing it with state radio from China in what critics say is a sign…
US Domestic Policy Reports
Diplomats are expelled from Moscow and Russian offices are shut down in the United States.
Russia handed a senior US diplomat in Moscow a strongly worded note of protest Saturday, the same day US officials had vowed to shutter three Russian diplomatic facilities in the United States amid escalating tensions.
Russia releases videos of alleged ‘illegal actions’ by US at its diplomatic posts
Of all the things journalists hate about President Trump, that he doesn’t cry every time there’s a tragedy seems to be at the very top. Nothing brings cramps to the New York Times opinion pages like a Trump tweet that isn’t fully inconsolable. As Hurricane Harvey began battering the Texas shoreline last weekend, reaching land as a Category 4 storm, Trump posted several notes on Twitter observing its intensity. “Wow – Now experts are calling #Harvey a once in 500 year flood!” he said in one. “We have an all out effort going, and going well!” In another, he remarked that “even experts have said they’ve never seen one like this!” Vanity Fair’s Tina Nguyen said Trump expressed “contrived seriousness at best, morbid fascination at worst.” New York Times columnist Frank Bruni dedicated a full article to the weather commentary, calling the tweets “childishly intent on superlatives, puerilely obsessed with size, laden with boasts and lavish with discordant asides.” “Call me cranky,” wrote Bruni, who is cranky, “but I don’t think most Americans are looking for ‘wow’ amid woe of this order.” It’s only a guess, but what “Americans are looking for” is help. And by all early accounts, the local government and the administration worked seamlessly in mitigating fallout from the disaster. Harvey dumped around 25 trillion gallons of water on Texas and Louisiana, flooding countless homes and wrecking cities. But the Federal Emergency Management Agency was on site two days before the storm hit. The National Guard and Coast Guard quickly mobilized and have saved thousands of lives. On Tuesday, Trump went to Corpus Christi, Texas, to survey some of the damage and cheered on the relief effort. He told the local people that “Texas can handle anything” and he held up a state flag to roars of proud approval.