Information operations · Information Warfare · Russia · Ukraine

Ukraine / Russia Ad Hoc Media Update (222)


Anonymous expert compilation, analysis, and reporting.

One article in this compilation is a hidden gem, Why Ukraine is changing the spelling of its capital.   I’ve been inundated with Ukraine since 2013 and I never even heard a rumor about ‘a name change’.  It turns out the title is misleading. Read the entire article, Ukraine has been trying to use the Ukrainian spelling, Kyiv, for 25 years, since gaining their independence from Russia. They want to forever get rid of the Russian spelling, Kiev.  Now they’re pressing for the whole world to also switch to the Ukrainian spelling.  Online, maps, airlines, tour books, newspapers, magazines – these are but a few of the places they are asking to change.

Also, an article by Paul Goble, Window on Eurasia — New Series: The Four Chief Characteristics of the Professional Putinist, should be mandatory reading. He truly encapsulates rabid Putinites. I’ve already cited the article in something else I’m working on. 

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NATO summit fallout. Inozemtsev’s wishful thinking. The Vozhd’s wishful thinking. Russian submarine update – the propaganda is bizarre. A dozen articles on Russia’s descent – possibly the most odd is Rogozin claiming originality when reverse engineering the Ukrainian SS-18 SATAN ELV conversion. Berdyaev, Slezkine and Eidman commentaries on Bolshevism are excellent. NATO / EU / PACE updates – Erdogan is playing the S-400 game for maximum domestic effect.

EU-Ukraine summit starts in Kyiv. EC Pres Tusk visits Luhansk FEBA with Pres Zelenskiy. Former Pres Poroshenko weighs in. US CDA Kyiv: “Ukraine has requested for the first time to purchase military equipment through the US. Department of Defense Foreign Military Sales program”. Ze calls on the Vozhd to engage in face to face talks – with POTUS involved. Ze comments that only POTUS can stop the Nordstream 2 project as “I think that neither Mrs. Merkel nor Mr. Macron will influence the process of the construction of the Nord Stream pipeline. They are influenced by local business, and they cannot do anything about it”. Black Sea / Azov update.

Gen Malomuzh criticises Ukraine’s grand strategy. BGen Bondar warns of Russian buildup near Kharkiv and Mariupol. Donbas update. MH17 updates. Industry update – mostly naval, but also new COTS glass cockpit for rotary wing upgrades.

Politics update. Ukraine receives first tanker load of US POL. Russian media game collapses. Culture topics update – Snyder on language, new Ilovaysk movie, Stone plays propaganda game. Chernobyl update.


UK Defense Secretary: We Need a Stronger NATO Now More Than Ever – Defense One

Penny Mordaunt recaps June’s NATO ministerial and looks ahead to the December NATO Summit in London.

UAWire – NATO Secretary General warns Russia of Alliance’s ‘defensive measures’

Secretary-General of NATO Jens Stoltenberg warned Russia that the Alliance would take defensive measures if Russia does not return to compliance …

Window on Eurasia — New Series: West Now Wants Rapprochement with Moscow More than at Any Time since 2014, Inozemtsev Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 6 – Ukraine faces a serious problem, Vladislav Inozemtsev says. The West as recent events show is more ready for a rapprochement with Moscow than at any time since 2014, and Kyiv over that period has based almost its entire strategy on the idea that it is “defending democratic Europe from a totalitarian Horde.” Recent weeks have not brought Ukraine much good news: Russia has returned to PACE, Trump and Putin have shaken hands and exchanged compliments and Macron and Merkel have decided to resume participation “in the senseless Normandy format” for talks about Ukraine with Moscow (nv.ua/opinion/voyna-s-rossiey-chto-izmenilos-na-zapade-50030679.html). All this indicates that the West now views a rapprochement with Moscow more seriously than at any point since the annexation of Crimea,” the Russian commentator says, a moment that only the naïve could believe would never come. “Although Russia is hardly capable of helping solve any international problem … Moscow has succeeded in creating the opposite impression.” Moreover, the excessive demonization of Russia has brought this day closer because it suggests that Moscow is far more powerful and influential than it in fact is. But “if the Horde begins to be counted as a ‘normal’ state,” the logic on which Ukraine’s foreign policy has been based collapses. “Gas deals between Berlin and Moscow, the lack of a desire by the US to hand over Russia to the sphere of the domination of China, the mythical influence of Russia on the situation in the Middle East – all this will work for the Kremlin” and against Ukraine, Inozemtsev continues. Continuing to hold fast to the illusion that “Russia is part of Asia and that Europeans will never agree with Putin” is simply wrong. “Russia is Europe only not of the 21st century but of the 19th. All its imperial strivings are things the Europeans understand and they are hardly ready to oppose this for purely ethnic reasons.” In that regard, “things are no better than in 1938.” Consequently, “chances for an increase in pressure on Kyiv are high, and the ever more obvious links of part of the Ukrainian political elite with Moscow are becoming an additional factor of reducing the support of Ukraine from the side of the West.” Ukrainians must face up to that squarely. Unless Moscow makes a series of major errors, the former hostility of Europe and the US toward it will not last. And that in turn means that Ukrainians face “the task of developing a new geopolitical strategy based on the logic ‘how bad things will be for Europe without us’ but on the logic ‘how much we can be useful to the world.’” “This is an exceptionally important and complicated task, the recipe for the solution of which I do not have,” Inozemtsev concedes. “I only want to stress that as long as Russia is not considered part of Europe, Ukraine also will not be viewed as such. For historical reasons, European politicians view all of the former USSR except for the Baltic countries as “not Europe.” Countries like the Balts, the Czech Republic or Poland were simply Europeans who had been prevented from assuming their rightful place. Those to the east of them aren’t viewed that way. Ukraine suffers from this and also from the fact that “in the opinion of Russia, it is too ‘European,’ while in the view of Europe, it is too ‘Russian’” and thus not European enough. Ukrainians need to consider how they can present themselves with competitive advantages and do so “led by rationality and not by emotions.” As Inozemtsev concludes, “a war with Russia and a period of alienation between Russia and the West served as a catalyst for the formation of the Ukrainian nation. A period of their possible rapprochement inevitably must become a time for Ukraine’s acquisition of its own political and economic subjectivity.”

Russia news: Vladimir Putin seeks to sideline EU to compete with US and China | World | News | Express.co.uk

RUSSIA does not see the European Union as a major world power and is therefore attempting to sideline the bloc in order to have a say in global decisions, an expert has revealed.

Ukraine records activity of Russian submarines in Bosporus

Ukraine has recorded the activity of Russian submarines in the Bosporus and notified Turkey about Russia’s violation of the Montreux Convention. Leonid Zaliubovsky, a representative of the Ukrainian General Staff and an assistant to the Ukrainian Navy commander in charge of legal work, has told an Ukrinform correspondent. Ukrainian military provided relevant data to the Turkish side through the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry. “We note the activity of Russian submarines that, under the pretext of undergoing repairs, actually violate the Montreux Convention concerning the passage of the Bosporus, for which Turkey is responsible. We informed the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry that we see some problems. In fact, this is a violation. As far as I know, the ministry sent inquiries to the Turkish Republic. They know about this situation and are studying it,” Zaliubovsky said. In addition, he said in a report during an international scientific conference on maritime law that over the past two months, Ukrainian troops recorded Russia’s increased activity both in the Mediterranean Sea and in the Black Sea. “In accordance with this [Montreux] Convention, the states of the Black Sea region may send their submarines beyond the Black Sea for the sole purpose of their maintenance. But the Russian Federation, under the pretext of technical maintenance, actually organizes a full deployment of submarines in the Mediterranean. This is an obvious violation of international law,” Zaliubovsky said. He also said that over the next three to four years, Russia plans to build a further 14 warships and station them in the Black Sea.

Russian servicemen ‘averted planetary catastrophe’ during nuclear submarine accident, military official claims at funeral | The Independent

Families of the 14 Russian servicemen who were killed after a fire broke out on a nuclear submarine have reportedly been told that their relatives averted a “planetary catastrophe” before they died.

Stricken Russian Nuke Sub Crew Prevented `Planetary Catastrophe’ – Bloomberg

The 14 sailors who died during a fire last week on a nuclear-powered Russian military submarine prevented a “planetary catastrophe,” a top naval officer said at their funeral, according to media reports.

Russia nuclear sub fire could have caused catastrophe: report cites navy official – Reuters

A fire aboard a top-secret Russian nuclear submarine could have led to a “catastrophe of global proportions” if not for the selfless actions of the crew, a senior navy official was cited by a Russian media outlet as saying.

Russia Holds Funeral Ceremonies For 14 Sailors Killed In Submarine Fire

Russian officials and relatives have laid to rest 14 sailors who were killed in a fire on one of the navy’s research submersibles.

Russia Buries Submariners Killed In Deadly Fire

Mourners gathered at the Serafimovskoye cemetery in St. Petersburg on July 6 for the funerals of 14 Russian Navy officers killed in a submarine fire. A convoy of hearses was seen to enter the guarded cemetery. Russian officials say the incident took place on July 1 but its details are considered a state secret.

Russia buries naval crew killed in nuclear sub fire amid secrecy over their mission – BBC News

The men who saved their vessel’s nuclear power reactor are buried, but their mission remains secret.

Russian seamen who died in mysterious navy submarine accident are buried | Fox News

The 14 Russian seamen who died in a fire on one of the navy’s research submersibles earlier this week were laid to rest in St. Petersburg on Saturday.

Russian funeral for 14 ‘elite’ submariners killed on nuclear spy vessel during ‘secret mission to help Putin seize control of the Arctic’ – The Sun

Aide To Putin’s Urals Envoy Faces Treason Charges

Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) has arrested Aleksandr Vorobyov who worked as an assistant to President Vladimir Putin’s envoy to the Urals region, Nikolai Tsukanov. The FSB says Vorobyov is facing charges of high treason. He was wearing a camouflage balaclava as he appeared before a Moscow court on July 5. This is the first publicly known case of a government official being arrested on suspicions of treason in post-Soviet Russia.

Russians with Links to Infamous Troll Farm Arrested in Libya

Two people with links to an infamous Russian troll farm have been arrested in Libya, their employer, who has been put on the U.S. sanctions list, said.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Bolshevism Like Radical Islamic Sect, Berdyaev Said, Slezkine Shows and Eidman Explains

Paul Goble Staunton, July 6 – Traditionally, most analysts of Bolshevism trace its evils to its rejection of all religious faiths, but the great Russian religious writer Nicholas Berdyaev observed and émigré historian Yury Slezkine documents, its evils arose because it was in fact a millenarian and chiliastic sect much like Islamist radicalism, Igor Eidman says. Berdyaev noted, the Russian sociologist says, that “only in the consciousness of Russian Bolsheviks did revolutionary socialism remain a religion which they by fire and sword wanted to impose on the world. This is something like a new Islam whose adepts wanted to merit paradise by killing unbelievers” (kasparov.ru/material.php?id=5D202FF4B996E). Eidman expands this observation in the following way: “The Prophet Lenin (the messenger of Marx) created a holy state, a Soviet khalifate which tried to spread communism through the entire world with the help of ‘jihad’ in the form of a world revolution. Communist shahids expected the paradise of communism if not for themselves then for their descendants.” Moreover, the sociologist continues, “the communists even had their own Sunni-Stalinists (the majority) and Shiia-Trotskyites (the minority) for whom Trotsky (like Ali) the only legitimate heir and spiritual successor of the prophet Lenin was killed by villains and usurpers.” In his new book The House of the Government, Slezkin argues that the communist faith like any new religion required victims and the blood of enemies, crusades, jihad and world revolution. It wasn’t important whether this religion had a God as such. What mattered was the attitude toward the leader and his doctrine. “Having become slaves of the dogma,” Slezkine argues, “the believers became slaves of its religious leaders.” But in ways that resemble the trajectory of many faiths, the communist religion did not survive. He argues that this reflects its lack of mysticism, its insufficiently total control, and disputes among its followers. According to Eidman, none of these reasons are entirely convincing. He suggests that the real reason lies elsewhere: “The 20th century becamse “the century of the triumph of rationalism, pragmatism, and consumerism.” Under their assault no religion like communism with its asceticism could expect to hold out for long. “Decommunization,” Eidman says, “became part of the pan-European process of secularization. The old Christian religion turned out to be more flexible and, in a significantly changed form, survived by operating on tradition while communism which was not so rooted lost the majority of its followers” relatively quickly. As the sociologist notes, “the Bolshevik sect became a state religion and lasted for more than seven decades in this capacity before collapsing into a marginal sect,” one that in the form of the KPRF is “no longer militant but rather a thick-headed Putinized sect of those who long for the USSR.’” According to Eidman, “a totalitarian regime cannot exist without a state religion. Something similar the powers that be are trying even now to introduce into Russia. In contrast o communism, this is a utopia not of the future but of the glorious past, which ‘we can repeat,’ the utopia of ‘the Great Victory,’ of victorious war.” But the sociologist argues, “in the contemporary world, it is impossible to create a new mass religion,” and consequently, this current Kremlin effort is doomed to fail sooner rather than later.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: The Four Chief Characteristics of the Professional Putinist

Paul Goble Staunton, July 5 – One does not encounter Putinists in a pure form very often, Moscow commentator Maksim Mirovich says. Many vote for him out of ignorance, the lack of independent sources of information or simply because everyone one does so. But there are “professional Putinists” and they share four important characteristics. To be sure, the professional Putinists have much in common with other groups like vatniks, anti-Westerners, or supporters of the restoration of the USSR, Mirovich says; and the members of all these groups have no difficulty in finding a common language. But the professional Putinists are distinct (maxim-nm.livejournal.com/517152.html). First, “the absolute majority” of them are anti-Western. For them the West is the source of all evil and a good target, the commentator says. They don’t notice that the Kremlin promotes this view to keep itself in power for ever by causing Putinists to oppose the democratic rotation of rulers. At the same time, “the majority of professional Putinists are also Stalinists,” not because they support everything he did or want to live under him but because he is a symbol of ‘everything anti-Western and anti-civilizational.” That is why these people also support all others who oppose those values, people like Pol Pot, Ceaușescu, Idi Amin and Kim Jong Il. Second, Professional Putinists, Mironov says, “fear and hate Jews and believe in magic.” They take their attitudes toward Jews from the Black Hundreds at the end of Imperial Russia and from Soviet persecution of Jews; and they see the actions of Jews in places even where there aren’t any, insisting that this too is part of a Jewish conspiracy against Russia. Moreover, “the majority of Putinists following the example of their poorly educated leader also are very superstitious people” who put their faith in magic and worry about numerology. They see this magic as being arrayed against them and count on their own cleverness to prevent it from defeating Putin and Russia. Third, “absolutely all Putinists are given to conspiracy thinking and believe in a secret world government, reptiloids, a Masonic conspiracy, ‘the protocols of the elders of Zion,’ the Dulles Plan, and Otto von Bismarck’s efforts” to set Ukrainians and Belarusians against Russia in order to weaken it. For the professional Putinist, “conspiracies explain everything from flooding in Russian cities to bad harvests.” And if you cast doubt on this, you are either a “useful idiot” of the West or in fact an agent working against Russia, Mirovich says. Putinists are also committed imperialists. They’d like to conquer the entire world or at least Europe to the Atlantic and are constrained from doing so only by the aggressive forces of NATO. At the very least, they want to retake all the territory of the former Soviet space, the commentator continues. And fourth, the professional Putinists deify their leader, a personality cult similar to that under Stalin but subtly different. Now, the professional Putinists feel themselves part of the cult rather than living under it, acknowledging that their leader has lied and then changed his line and that they loyal as they are have done the same thing. All this would be funny, Mironov says, were it not so sad and bitter. Russia had a chance at the end of the 1990s to move in another direction, toward “demilitarization, humanization, a normal educational system and on the whole a normal life.” But it went off in another direction, a detour that is costing it enormously but that will not continue forever. “In the contemporary world,” he continues, “there is no other path of normal development than democracy.” It is simply that some countries pass move toward this much later than the rest. At some point Russia will return to this path. But what is unfortunate is that whole generations will be lost until it does.”

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Putin Generation Doesn’t Want to Work for the State but Rather to Live Abroad, New HeadHunter Poll Finds

Paul Goble Staunton, July 5 – A new poll conducted by the HeadHunter portal finds that 41 percent of those between the ages of 14 and 22, Russians who have grown up entirely under Vladimir Putin, want to work for international corporations so that they can leave the country at the first opportunity. Only 19 percent of young Russians want to enter government service, half as many as in 2016, the last time HeadHunter did a survey of this type. “Such a catastrophic level of escapism, commentator Anton Chablin says, “the country has never known before: an entire generation doesn’t connect its future with its native country (svpressa.ru/society/article/237334/). Seventeen percent say they dream of becoming freelancers, and only five percent are ready to work in the educational system, and even fewer. As Chablin notes, these findings undercut the stereotype that young people want to join the bureaucracy. In fact, young Russians have a negative view of the bureaucracy, believing that it offers only low pay and high stress. Other new surveys, he says, confirm this potentially unsettling conclusion (vedomosti.ru/management/articles/2019/07/02/805537-pochemu-molodezh). And the attitudes toward state service and about emigration are increasingly linked as economic conditions in Russia deteriorate. “It is extremely indicative,” the commentator says, “that from the beginning of the economic crisis, the outflow of citizens has sharply increased: Over the last five year, 1.7 million have emigrated, of which almost 280,000 have moved to countries” beyond the borders of what was the USSR. Twenty-four thousand have gone to Germany, 8,000 to the US, and 5,000 each to Estonia and Israel. The actual numbers, of course, are much higher. Russian government statistics understate the outflow both because of a desire not to offend the Kremlin and because of the way in which emigres are counted. Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov has dismissed the number wanting to leave according to earlier surveys as “not so big.” It is very much an open question whether he would do the same to the latest findings showing that four out of every ten young Russians now wants to live abroad.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Kremlin Sees No Reason to Change Course so Russians Must Demand It, Martynov Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 7 – Just as in Soviet times, the Kremlin now has “no motivation to change itself and develop the country,” Kirill Martynov says; and consequently, any demand for change can now come only from the citizens themselves. That arrangement, he says, isn’t going to lead to a thaw but to something more radical. Every time the powers that be appear to be acting in less than a cannibalistic way, the political editor of Novaya gazeta says, Russians, “half seriously and half in gest,” begin to speculate about the possibility of a new “thaw,” a relaxation of the political system like the one that followed the death of Stalin (novayagazeta.ru/articles/2019/07/07/81156-rossiya-bez-ottepeli). But that is to misread history, Martynov continues. “After the death of the bloody tyrant who ruled for decades, the country was so exhausted that the authorities had to give people the possibility to breathe a little. But the thaw never risked become a real spring, and after a short period of warming, the political atmosphere was cooled down by new frosts.” “The climate remained arctic because the Soviet powers that be up to the middle of the 1980s did not have serious reasons to change it,” the editor says. And today is much the same: those in power don’t see any reason to make more than cosmetic changes and will not do anything to change the situation in any fundamental way. More than that, Martynov says, they will not allow anyone to cast doubt on “axion that the country is moving on the only correct course under the leadership of irreplaceable professionals.” And the gap between those in power and ordinary Russians is only growing, as the statements and articles of the leaders make clear. If change is going to come to Russia, he argues, it will only come at the demand of the population; and changed produced that way won’t be “a thaw” but something far more fundamental.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: A Majority of Russians Want Change But Many Fear Instability, Moscow Institute of Sociology Study Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 5 – “A relative majority of Russians” believe that the country’s economic and political arrangements need to be changed, Vladimir Petukhov of the Moscow Institute of Sociology says, especially those in the most active social groups. But at the same time, “no small number” worry that any change could threaten the country’s stability. Petukhov, who heads the institute’s center for complex social research, drew those conclusions on the basis of the latest poll of 4,000 Russians throughout the country. Over the past decade, he says, poll have shown that “respondents preferred stability to change” (rg.ru/2019/07/04/vyzhutovich-rossiiane-hotiat-peremen-no-ponimaiut-chto-nuzhna-stabilnost.html). But in the fall of 2017, the share of those who supported change reached 51 percent, with higher figures among younger age groups. “Supporters of reform formed a majority in the megalopolises, oblast centers and – unexpectedly – among rural residents,” while backers of stability retained their majority in district centers and settlements of an urban type. This desire for change, Petukhov says, “has arise from the prolonged crisis: now the status quo and stability are associated in the minds of many with economic problems and a decline in the standard of living.” And it has intensified as people have concluded that Russia isn’t going to get out of the current situation anytime soon. In reporting these findings in Rossiiskaya gazeta, commentator Valery Vyzhutovich spoke with Academician Mikhail Gorshkov who oversaw Petukhov’s work. According to the academician, “the authorities have a broader understanding of change” that does the population. The powers that be “connect it both with domestic life and with international relations.” Ordinary Russians in contrast “want a transition to a new quality of life but this does not especially concern the transformation of political institutions.” Their interest in change therefore is not necessarily a threat to those institutions but simply an indication that they want a better life. According to Gorshkoov, the authorities need to make use of this set of attitudes, but unfortunately, none of them except the president is ready to do so at present. Instead, most of them avoid interacting with the population, “even though now society is ready for dialogue” and would respond positively to it. Vyzhutovich points out that the Institute’s findings are consistent with those of the Public Opinion Foundation and VTsIOM. And he notes in particular the finding of the latter that “in the opinion of the Russian majority, democracy is “needed but ‘a very special kind corresponding to the national traditions and specific features’ of the country.” “Almost 45 percent of those queried [by VTsIOM] are certain that Western democracy will bring Russia chaos and destruction.” Such attitudes have been intensified by the conclusion of nearly two-thirds of all Russians that relations between Russia and the West will always be distrustful. Only 24 percent think they could ever be friendly. Vyzhutovich sums up: “The absence of any demand for civic freedoms is explained besides everything else by paternalistic attitudes. These attitudes as before remain very strong. Therefore, demands of a significant part of society are directed to the authorities” rather than directed against them. “In this sense,” the commentator says, “the demand for change which citizens understand in their own way does not in their understanding go beyond the limits of the economy and social spheres.”

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Putin’s Healthcare ‘Optimization’ Behind Rising Death Rates in Russia, Experts Say

Paul Goble Staunton, July 5 – Deputy Prime Minister Tatyana Golikova’s comments about rising mortality rates in Russian regions and also about official efforts to cover this trend up (windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2019/07/is-moscow-finally-going-to-focus-on.html) has not surprisingly led to a flood of articles on the subject, many of them very critical of the Kremlin. In an article entitled “The Fruits of Optimization: Mortality in Rusisa has Risen too the Level of National Disaster,” Irina Mishina of Novyye izvestiya presents the devastating observations of doctors, patients and health care experts about what is happening in Russia now and who is to blame (newizv.ru/news/society/03-07-2019/plody-optimizatsii-smertnost-v-rossii-podnyalas-do-urovnya-natsionalnogo-bedstviya). It is not just that local officials are concealing death figures, they say; the health ministry continues to blame higher death rates exclusively on the flu, the aging of the population, or overconsumption of alcohol, even though statistics show that these things do not account for the rise in the death rate Russians are now experiencing. “According to Rosstat data for 2017, Mishina says, “one of the basic causes of mortality of men in Russia are not problems with alcohol but with the circulatory system. As a result of heart attacks 102,000 Russian men aged 16 to 59 died from that.” Cancer was the second cause, and the third was accidents, murders, suicides, and so on. But the most horrific thing government figures show is that Russians “are beginning to die at younger ages.” According to the health ministry, Russia has seen an upsurge of death among men and women aged 35 to 44; and a major reason for that, Mishina says, is that the remaining hospitals focus on the diseases of the elderly than on those of working-age adults. The biggest problem, however, is the lack of access to medical care. People are dying because there is no longer any ambulance service, medical point or hospital. One piece of evidence of this is that today “the level of mortality in rural areas is 13 percent higher than in the cities.” The government’s health care optimization program is to blame for this. The regime hides the figures, but according to the Alliance of Doctors, between 2002 and 2017, the number of hospitals was reduced by 5,000 and the number of polyclinics by 1,000. By all accounts, the rate of closures is increasing even as death rates are going up. These closures are leading to a situation, the Alliance says, where “today it is practically impossible to receive emergency medical assistance.” Added to the fact that many cases are not diagnosed early on because of the shortage of medical facilities, that necessarily increases the number of deaths. Instead of spending the seven percent of GDP on health care that the World Health Organization recommends, Anastasiya Vasiliyev of the Alliance continues, Russia is currently spending only 3.6 percent. “Budget moneys are going for football, for Syria for God knows what but not for the development of accessible medical help.” And the situation appears likely to get worse not better. Specialists say that “if the authorities continue to close hospitals at the current rates, by 2021-2022, the number of medical institutions in the country will fall to 3,000, that is to the level of the Russian Empire in 1913” (rbc.ru/society/07/04/2017/58e4feb59a794722462a85aa).

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact Justified by Russian National Interests, Sergey Ivanov Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 5 – Sergey Ivanov, the former Russian defense minister who is still a member of the Russian Security Council, told the Russian Historical Society yesterday the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact was not “the collusion of two dictators” but rather an action fully justified by the national interests of the USSR, interests which the Russian Federation shares. Ivanov said that he didn’t want anyone to take his words as being the expression of “the opinion of the highest organs of power” but added that he thinks that their position on this issue is “approximately the same” as his own (gazeta.ru/science/2019/07/04_a_12475927.shtml). As US-based Russian historian Irina Pavlova notes, that is important both in terms of the immediate context in which Ivanov’s remarks were made and as an indication of Kremlin thinking about the continuity, even identity of interests between the Soviet Union of Stalin’s time and the Russia of Vladimir Putin’s (ivpavlova.blogspot.com/2019/07/blog-post.html). Ivanov’s remarks come as the Duma is set to take up a resolution disowning the findings of the Second Congress of Peoples’ Deputies 30 years ago that the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact and its secret protocols were “legally baseless and without effect from the moment of their signing,” Pavlova says. Indeed, she continues, the former defense minister said this week that “theoretically if there is political will now, this decision should be reviewed and rejected … But whether it is necessary to do this, I am not certain. Al the harm which the earlier finding could have has already been inflicted. But another aspect of Ivanov’s remarks is far more indicative and serious, Pavlova continues. According to him, the August 23, 1939 pact was “justified and completely corresponded to ‘our national interests.’” “The key word here is ‘our,’” Pavlova says. “That is, Ivanov not only does not divide present day Russia from the Stalinist USSR but asserts that it is its successor: ‘Then the Soviet Union actively promoted the idea of collective security. Now, Russia is pushing the very same idea.” At the same time, however, Ivanov insists that one can’t speak openly about these parallels because if one does, others will exploit that to demand that Russia be held responsible for what the USSR did, including in the case of some countries insisting on material reparations for the damage it inflicted. Some Moscow commentators, like Valery Solovey, say that all the talk about Stalin is about the past (echo.msk.ru/blog/vsolovej/2457431-echo/), but “in reality,” Pavlova says, “there is nothing more immediate than the recognition that in contemporary Russia we are dealing with modernized Stalinism, nothing more important or more dangerous.”

UAWire – Russia considers using decommissioned ballistic missiles for satellite launches

Russian State Corporation for Space Activities Roscosmos is considering the possibility of using decommissioned missile systems to launch civilian satellites into orbit, said the head of the Corporation Dmitry Rogozin. According to him, Intercontinental ballistic missile Voevoda could be used for this purpose. This ballistic missile could be adjusted for launches of civilian spacecraft. Now this project is being discussed with the Ministry of Defense. Rogozin believes that this method should be applied to all missiles that are going to be decommissioned. He expressed confidence that it is necessary to use the technology of “missiles full life-cycle” to get the maximum benefit from the missile, starting with the first stages of its design and production to the point of its disposal. Rogozon said that “the most important thing is not to do that under the pressure or the risk.”

Dnepr (rocket) – Wikipedia

The Dnepr is based on the R-36MUTTH Intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) – called the SS-18 Satan by NATO – designed in the 1970s by the Yuzhnoe Design Bureau in Dnipro, Ukraine, which was then a part of the USSR. The Dnepr control system was developed and produced by the JSC “Khartron”, Kharkiv. The Dnepr is a three-stage rocket using storable hypergolic liquid propellants. The launch vehicles used for satellite launches have been withdrawn from ballistic missile service with the Russian Strategic Rocket Forces and stored for commercial use. A group of a total of 150 ICBMs were allowed under certain geopolitical disarmament protocols to be converted for use, and can be launched through 2020. The Dnepr is launched from the Russian-controlled Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan and the Dombarovsky launch base, near Yasny, in the Orenburg region of Russia. In February 2015, following a year of strained relations as a result of a Russian military intervention into Ukraine, Russia announced that it would sever its “joint program with Ukraine to launch Dnepr rockets and [was] no longer interested in buying Ukrainian Zenit boosters, deepening problems for [Ukraine’s] space program and its struggling Yuzhmash factory.”[4] However ISC Kosmotras reported that they would continue to fulfill its obligations for three Dnepr launches in 2015,[5] of which only one took place. By the end of 2016, no further launch had materialized and the remaining customers had switched to alternative launch providers.

Russia plans to make 200 more Sukhoi jets despite crash: minister – Reuters

Russia plans to produce at least another 200 Sukhoi Superjet 100 aircraft, Industry Minister Denis Manturov told Reuters, despite a fatal crash that raised questions about the future of the country’s first new passenger jet since the Soviet Union.

Putin, Erdogan Discuss S-400 Missile System, Kremlin Says

Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, on July 6 discussed by phone the supply of Russian S-400 missile defense systems to Turkey.

Erdogan says Russia kicks off delivery operation for S-400 missile system – Military & Defense – TASS

According to the Turkish leader, the Russian systems will have a positive effect on the security of the entire region

Europe Built a System to Fight Russian Meddling. It’s Struggling. – The New York Times

As governments debate the best way to combat Kremlin propaganda, internal documents show the political disputes behind what appeared to be an ambitious effort.

USAID presents framework for Countering Malign Kremlin Influence – news world | UNIAN

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has presented the framework for Countering Malign Kremlin Influence. Washington is ready to provide financial assistance to U.S. partners to reduce their economic dependence on Russia. One of the main tools for expanding the Kremlin’s influence is the Russia Today and Sputnik International platforms, as well as social media. Thousands of Kremlin paid teams flood platforms and peddle content designed to create confusion, distrust, and cynicism about democratic and Western institutions, the Ukrainian-language service of Germany’s Deutsche Welle (DW) reported on July 7, referring to USAID Administrator Mark Green’s remarks on Countering Malign Kremlin Influence. The Kremlin devotes almost $300 million each and every year on the said platforms, it said. According to Green, Washington is ready to provide financial assistance to U.S. partners to reduce their economic dependence on Russia. Among other things, this refers to strengthening the cybersecurity of regional energy utilities. As examples of successful cooperation between Eastern European countries and the United States, Green mentioned Ukraine and Moldova. In response to past Kremlin efforts to hack Ukraine’s elections, USAID provided approximately $2.7 million in elections cybersecurity equipment and training for their Central Election Commission this year in order to support free and fair elections. Green says the current regime in Moscow is an “authoritarian power that is aggressively seeking a new ideological sphere of influence beyond its borders.” According to the official, the Kremlin is trying to extend its influence to the countries of Europe and Eurasia. To this end, Moscow employs economic lines of manipulation, particularly in the energy sector. It leverages the historic dependence of their neighbors on Russian oil and gas. Russia also targeting countries’ democratic systems and political sovereignty. It cultivates and financially supports pro-Kremlin political parties either to elect anti-democratic candidates or more often, simply to add uncertainty and confusion in the public arena. “At USAID, we’re stepping forward to assist democracies and institutions who may be targeted by Kremlin aggression. We’ve crafted a framework for this assistance, that we call Countering Malign Kremlin Influence, or CMKI,” Green said.

Putin’s Ban On Direct Russia-Georgia Flights Comes Into Force

A decree banning direct flights between Russia and Georgia, issued by Russian President Vladimir Putin in response to anti-Russia protests in Tbilisi, came into effect on July 8.

Georgian TV Ceases Broadcasts After Vulgar Anti-Putin Rant

Georgia’s opposition-run television channel Rustavi-2 ceased its broadcasts for six hours on July 8 after hundreds of demonstrators protested against on-air obscenities used by a program host to de…

UAWire – OSCE calls on Russia to stop recognition of Abkhazia and South Ossetia

The General Committee on Political Affairs and Security of Parliamentary Assembly of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe ( …

U.S. MQ-9 Reaper Drones Move Closer to the Black Sea – The Aviationist

The drones relocated to Romania because of construction works in Miroslawiec AB, Poland. The 52nd Expeditionary Operations Group Detachment 2, the unit operating MQ-9 Reaper drones in Europe, relocated from Miroslawiec AB (Poland) to Campia Turzii AB (Romania) on July 3 while the Polish base undergoes construction works. The detachment is a geographically separated unit assigned to the 52nd Fighter Wing at Spangdahlem AB (Germany) whose mission is to conduct Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) and has been operating from the Polish base since May 2018. The unarmed Block 5 Reapers are flown and maintained by contractors, with the Air Force providing communications, intelligence analysis and force protection. The move to Romania brings the MQ-9s closer to the Black Sea region, already a hotspot for daily patrols of various ISR aircraft, notably RQ-4 Global Hawks and P-8A Poseidons operating from NAS Sigonella (Italy).

Romania approves procurement of 5 more F-16A/B fighters – Defence Blog

The Romanian parliament reportedly greenlit the acquisition of 5 more F-16A/B fighter jets. According to media reports in recent weeks, the Romanian parliament has approved the procurement of additional F-16A/B combat aircraft from Portugal on 2 July. “Defense Minister Gabriel Leş announced that another five F-16 planes will be bought, which have the same configuration as the 12 already purchased,” the BURSA reported. Also reported that the Romanian parliament approved the procurement of a package of equipment and services for its F-16s from the U.S. government. In the longer term, Romania hopes to procure a fifth-generation fighter, which would then serve as a replacement for the F-16s. To date, Romania bought a total of secondhand 12 F-16 Block 15 Mid-Life Upgrade (MLU) fighter jets (nine F-16AMs and three F-16BMs) from Portugal. According to the current information, the Block 15 change feature larger horizontal stabilizers, the addition of two hardpoints to the chin inlet, an improved AN/APG-66(V)2 radar, and increased capacity for the underwing hardpoints. The Block 15 also gained the Have Quick II secure UHF radio. To counter the additional weight of the new hardpoints, the horizontal stabilizers were enlarged by 30%. Block 15 is the most numerous variant of the F-16, with 983 produced.

U.S. Special Forces Soldiers train with Polish, Latvian allies in West Virginia – Defence Blog

The West Virginia National Guard has announced that members of the U.S. Special Forces train with Polish and Latvian allies in West Virginia. West Virginia Army National Guard (WVARNG) Special Forces Soldiers with the 2nd Battalion, 19th Special Forces Group (Airborne) recently completed the first irregular and unconventional warfare training iteration for members of the Polish Territorial Defense Forces and Latvian Zemmessardze as a part of the Ridge Runner program in West Virginia. Ridge Runner is a WVARNG training program that provides various National Guard, active duty, and North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) ally nation armed forces training and experience to in irregular and asymmetrical warfare tactics and operations. Both nations have newly established national guard-type forces for their militaries, the Territorial Defense Forces for Poland and the Zemmesardze for Latvia, that are focused on the defense of their homeland and resistance against an aggressor. “The conclusion of this Ridge Runner training is an exceptionally important milestone for both West Virginia and our allies in Poland and Latvia, who we have a longstanding relationship within our State through the State Partnership Programs with the Illinois and Michigan National Guards,” said Maj. Gen. James Hoyer, Adjutant General of the West Virginia National Guard. “West Virginia is the perfect venue for our highly trained special forces to help these two nations’ military forces develop the skills vital to their mission at home, which is extraordinarily important in this era of geo-political uncertainty.” “This exercise provides us a unique set of skills needed in developing our unconventional warfare skill sets,” said Marek Zaluski, acting public information officer for the Polish Territorial Defense Forces. “Our primary role is similar to that of the National, which is to support the local communities. In addition, we serve as a reserve base for conventional forces. Here at Ridge Runner, we developed skills beyond that. We’ve learned how to work with Special Forces, serve as liaisons, how to speak the same language, have the interoperability and cooperation.” He continued, “We greatly appreciate the opportunity to train with the West Virginia National Guard, through Ridge Runner and the State Partnership Program. All those skills being developed go right along with what we learn at home. The soldiers who came with us for this exercise were specifically handpicked from a larger group because they represent the skills needed to operate with the Special Forces community as liaisons, pathfinders, and as people who are the points of contact in case of an unconventional warfare situation.” Ridge Runner’s mission is to develop and execute irregular warfare training across the State of West Virginia that contributes to the development of Special Operations Forces’ (SOF) and General-Purpose Forces’ (GPF) irregular warfare understanding and capabilities, in order to support national security. The Ridge Runner program operates in different parts of the state because of its diverse training needs and the terrain the State of West Virginia offers. Ridge Runner is held numerous times per year to train forces in both the United States and around the world. The State Partnership Program (SPP) is a National Guard Bureau initiative that links states and territories with partner countries around the world to foster mutual interests, establish long-term relations, enhance U.S. national security interests, and promote political stability. Through the SPP program, the Illinois National Guard is partnered with Poland and the Michigan National Guard is partnered with Latvia.

Head of British delegation to PACE reportedly joins protest against Russia’s return – Ariev – news politics | UNIAN

Following in Swedish delegates’ footsteps, the head of the British delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) has reportedly joined a statement by seven countries on joint actions in protest against the unconditional return of the Russian delegation to the PACE. The statement was signed by the delegations of Estonia, Georgia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia, and Ukraine.

Russia’s return to PACE does not mean it has carte blanche, – PACE Head Pasquier

PACE Head commented on the return of Russia’s delegation to the organization

UAWire – PACE President tries to justify Russia’s return to Assembly

On July 7 the President of PACE Lillian-Marie Pasquier during her speech at the session in the Parliamentary Assembly of the OSCE said that the …

 

Donald Tusk on Twitter: “Visited Stanitsa Luhanska today with President @ZelenskyyUa. The tragedy in eastern Ukraine continues, with disastrous humanitarian consequences for local people trapped by Russia’s war. Good meetings with brave Ukrainian soldiers, the OSCE monitors and humanitarian agencies.… https://t.co/w1xeHJy5s8”

 

Donald Tusk on Twitter: “Ukrainians’ courage and determination inspire respect and recognition. During the Revolution of Dignity at Maidan and in building a modern, democratic state, Ukrainians have many reasons to be satisfied. Ukraine can always count on me. https://t.co/4PpVtTlR5I… https://t.co/jJlKtSE57o”

Tusk and Zelensky to visit Luhansk region on July 7

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky and President of the European Council Donald Tusk will visit the Luhansk region tomorrow, July 7. This is reported by Interfax. It is known that Tusk and Zelensky will familiarize with the situation in Donbas. They also plan to communicate with local residents and OSCE representatives. This visit is scheduled before the Ukraine-European Union summit, which will be held under the representation of the President of Ukraine, President of the European Council Donald Tusk and President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker. There they intend to discuss reforms, political priorities, security issues, as well as the implementation of the provisions of the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the EU.

Zelensky, Tusk visit Stanytsia Luhanska in Donbas – news politics | UNIAN

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and President of the European Council Donald Tusk on July 7 visited the village of Stanytsia Luhanska in Luhansk region, eastern Ukraine, to observe and hear a report on the security situation in the area of the Joint Forces Operation (JFO), following the disengagement of forces and weapons there. Disengagement of forces was performed in Stanytsia Luhanska on June 26-30.

Tusk on visit to Donbas: Local people trapped by Russia’s war – news politics | UNIAN

Following a joint visit by President of the European Council Donald Tusk and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to Donbas on July 7, Tusk said the tragedy in eastern Ukraine continues with disastrous humanitarian consequences for the local population. The European Council president also met with Ukrainian soldiers, OSCE observers and humanitarian agencies.

EU-Ukraine summit opens in Kyiv – UNIAN Photoreport

EU-Ukraine summit opens in Kyiv. UNIAN pictures

EU-Ukraine summit begins in Kyiv

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky met with leaders of the European Union at the Mariinsky Palace in Kyiv as part of the EU-Ukraine summit. — Ukrinform.

EU to lift Russia sanctions when Minsk accords implemented – Tusk

Sanctions against Russia will not be lifted until the Minsk agreements are implemented. — Ukrinform.

EU’s support for Ukraine aims at protecting norms of international law – prime minister

Support for Ukraine is not an issue of the position of some countries or politicians, it is an issue of protecting common values and norms of international law. — Ukrinform.

Tusk calls Ukrainians heroes

President of European Council Donald Tusk called all the Ukrainians heroes, as he said at the briefing with Ukraine’s Prime Minister Volodymyr Groysman, broadcasted on air of 112 Ukraine. He noted that he considers all Ukrainians heroes as they have survived despite war, difficulties of the reforms and poverty. Related: Tusk summarizes his visit to Stanytsia Luhanska “For me, you are all heroes. I saw you like that during the Revolution of Dignity on Maidan, and later, when you defended the sovereignty and integrity of your country and built a modern state, introduced democratic standards. Despite poverty, which still remains in some niches, despite suffering the war brought, despite the difficulties of the reform you survived. EU has to be proud and thankful for having such a partner,” Tusk said As it was reported, Tusk stated it might be his last visit to Ukraine as the President of the European Council.

Tusk: Some saw me as pro-Ukrainian maniac and I’m proud of it. VIDEO

08.07.19 17:30 – Tusk: Some saw me as pro-Ukrainian maniac and I’m proud of it. VIDEO The President of European Council Donald Tusk apologized to Ukrainians for not being effective. View video news.

Tusk: Now the Minsk agreements must be fulfilled by both sides like never before, especially by Russia

President of the European Council Donald Tusk has said the Minsk agreements must now, like never before, be fulfilled by all sides, especially Russia.

Five cooperation documents signed at Ukraine-EU summit in Kyiv

Five documents on cooperation between Kyiv and Brussels were signed at the Ukraine-EU summit in Kyiv on Monday, July 8.

Zelensky invites EU to jointly assess Association Agreement

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has invited European partners to jointly assess the implementation of the Association Agreement between Ukraine and the European Union in order to get to a new level of cooperation. — Ukrinform.

Kyiv and Brussels should discuss Russia’s creeping occupation of Ukrainian media – Poroshenko

During the EU-Ukraine summit in Kyiv on July 8, President Zelensky should raise the issue of Ukrainian TV channels that belong to pro-Kremlin leaders. — Ukrinform.

Петро Порошенко on Twitter: “It is very important for Ukraine-EU Summit to decide on the issue on Azov package. Russia did not implement the order of the Hamburg International Arbitration, and did not free our sailors and return our vessels.… https://t.co/uBEZA3NVRn”

July 8 at the Ukraine-EU summit must be made important decisions to accelerate European integration, – Poroshenko

The Ukraine-EU summit, which will take place on July 8 in Kiev, should not become “lost time” and turn into a protocol formality. Its result should be the deepening of integration and bilateral cooperation between Ukraine and the European Union. This was stated by the leader of the European Solidarity party, the fifth president of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, during a speech to supporters in Kiev, Tsenzor.NET reports with reference to the political forces press service . “Relying on the five-year experience of rapprochement with the European Union, we expect the most important decisions from the Ukraine-EU summit the day after tomorrow. Do not waste time – this is an appeal to President Zelensky and our European partners. Look beyond the horizon, think strategically. If Ukraine is not ready yet to submit an application, we will do it in 2023. In the meantime, fulfill the agreements that I reached during the last summit, ”Poroshenko called. He recalled that during his presidential cadence, together with European partners, he adopted a strategy to strengthen bilateral cooperation, which includes the introduction of four alliances with the EU: energy, digital, customs, and Schengen. “Let’s make an energy union with Europe, and then gas will be bought on the border of Ukraine. Let’s digital union is a unique digital management, and our people who will travel to Europe will not pay for roaming without visa. Let’s do it Customs Union – and no so-called customs or commodity visa will be required: when you send products from Ukrainian manufactures – customs clearance is not required, everything is done. Let’s make the Schengen union – we already have visa-free, but Ukrainians do not . To check passports Why Because we Europeans – and it’s really done, “- said the fifth president of Ukraine. Источник: https://censor.net.ua/n3136119

Ukraine’s Eurointegration official not allowed to attend Ukraine-EU summit in Kyiv (Video) – news politics | UNIAN

Ukrainian Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Ivanna Klympush-Tsintsadze has not been allowed to attend the Ukraine-EU summit in Kyiv on July 8. Klympush-Tsintsadze is in charge of the issues included in the agenda of the summit.

Ukraine-EU summit: A chance for Volodymyr Zelensky to prove himself a statesman | Euronews

A summit in Kiev with EU leaders Donald Tusk and Jean-Claude Juncker will be a chance for Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to prove he is a serious statesman, the Atlantic Council’s Peter Dickinson told Euronews.

Georgiy Kuhaleyshvili | New EU leadership: What does it mean for Ukraine?

The proposed candidacies for EU leadership positions are the result of a difficult compromise between German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron with leaders of other EU member states. On the evening of July 2, Donald Tusk, President of the European Council, posted on his Facebook page a list of new candidates for key posts in the European Union. German Minister of Defense Ursula von der Leyen is now applying for the post of President of the European Commission. Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, wants to appoint the president of the European Central Bank. Spanish Foreign Minister Josep Borrell might become new EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, while Prime Minister of Belgium Charles Michel will become President of the European Council. Tusk coordinated the nominations of these officials at an emergency meeting of the European Council on Tuesday with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron and leaders of other EU member states. Now the ball is on the side of the European Parliament, which must approve the candidacies of Ursula von der Leyen for the presidency of the European Commission and Josep Borrel – for the presidency of European diplomacy. Ukraine is closely following the personnel changes in the EU bodies, since they may affect the position of Brussels on the Ukrainian issue.

Window on Eurasia — New Series: Intermarium Countries Becoming Ukraine’s Main Advocates, Portnikov Says

Paul Goble Staunton, July 7 – Stanisław Karczewski, the Marshal of the Senate of the Republic of Poland, has announced plans to convene a conference of representatives of Estonia, Georgia, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia and Ukraine to discuss how to collectively respond to the decision to restore Russia to full membership in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. “This readiness for joint actions yet again demonstrates,” Ukrainian commentator Vitaly Portnikov says, “that against the collaborationism of ‘the collective West,’ it is both possible and necessary to struggle,” something many in Kyiv including Vladimir Zelensky do not recognize (ru.espreso.tv/article/2019/07/01/vytalyy_portnykov_ukrayne_vnov_nuzhny_advokaty). As Portnikov says, “the forces which want to normalize relations with Russia at the expense of Ukraine and international law have been trying to achieve this already for more than a year.” And often they have been prevented from doing so when their efforts are exposed in the media by those in Central and Eastern Europe who understand “the Russian threat.” I had thought, the Ukrainian commentator continues, that after the Maidan, Ukraine didn’t need “advocates” anymore but rather “partners in opposing aggression.” But it turns out, Portnikov concedes, that his optimism on this point was premature. “The political inexperience of the new Ukrainian president, the absence in his team of a genuine interest in foreign policy, and the irrational fear of the Kremlin,” he says, “makes precisely such an advocate a necessity even now.” Such advocates can better defend the interests of Ukraine in the international arena than the current Kyiv leadership. This initiative from the marshal of the Polish Senate is thus “a very good signal.” It recalls the time when Warsaw “more effectively defended the interests of Ukraine than did Yanukkovich himself who in general was not concerned about the interests of our country,” Portnikov says. “In the present situation, the presidents of Poland or Lithuania also could more effectively defend the interests of Ukraine to the West, at least as long as the new president of Ukraine does not recognize the importance of such a defense and does not learn how to effectively do it.” Ukraine today, Portnikov concludes, “simply can’t get by without [such] advocates.” The countries between the Baltic and the Black Sea and between Russia and Germany are sometimes called the Intermarium and have a tradition of cooperating with one another. (On that see Marek Chodakiewicz’s Intermarium: The Land between the Black and Baltic Seas (Transaction Publishers, 2012) and windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2016/07/intermarium-idea-whose-time-is-coming.html).

Ukraine Requests U.S. Weapons Ahead Of Possible Trump-Zelenskiy Meeting

Ukraine has formally requested to purchase U.S. military equipment for the first time as the nation continues to battle Russia-backed separatist formations in parts of two eastern provinces.

Ukraine has sent a formal request to the United States to purchase military equipment

“Ukraine has requested for the first time to purchase military equipment through the US. Department of Defense Foreign Military Sales program,” said William Taylor, US Embassy Charge d’Affaires. This was posted by the twitter of the US Embassy in Kyiv. “ I’m pleased to announce that Ukraine has requested for the first time to purchase military equipment through the US. Department of Defense Foreign Military Sales program. We are beginning the review process for that request. The United States stands firmly with Ukraine in support of its sovereignty territorial integrity, and defense sector reforms.

Ukraine requested to purchase military equipment through FMS program – Defence Blog

Ukraine’s Chargé d’Affaires, William Taylor, has confirmed that Kyiv for the first time has requested to buy military equipment through the U S. Department of Defense Foreign Military Sales program. “I’m pleased to announce that Ukraine has requested for the first time to purchase military equipment through the U S. Department of Defense Foreign Military Sales program.“, William Taylor said. He also noted that the U.S. Government already beginning the review process for that request. “The United States stands firmly with Ukraine in support of its sovereignty territorial integrity, and defense sector reforms,” added Ukraine’s Chargé d’Affaires. According to the Defense Security Cooperation Agency, the Foreign Military Sales, or FMS program, is a form of security assistance authorized by the Arms Export Control Act (AECA), as amended [22 U.S.C. 2751, et. seq.] and a fundamental tool of U.S. foreign policy. Under Section 3, of the AECA, the U.S. may sell defense articles and services to foreign countries and international organizations when the President formally finds that to do so will strengthen the security of the U.S. and promote world peace. Under FMS, the U.S. Government and a foreign government enter into a government-to-government agreement called a Letter of Offer and Acceptance (LOA). The purchaser does not deal directly with the defense contractor; instead, the Defense Security Cooperation Agency serves as an intermediary, usually handling procurement, logistics and delivery and often providing product support, training, and infrastructure construction (such as hangars, runways, utilities, etc.).

UAWire – For the first time Ukraine asks to buy weapons from US

For the first time, Ukraine has asked to purchase weapons from the US, the US Embassy to Ukraine reported. “I am pleased to announce that, for …

U.S. begins to review Ukraine’s request for military equipment purchase – Taylor – news politics | UNIAN

United States Chargé d’Affaires to Ukraine William Taylor has said the United States began to review Ukraine’s request for the purchase of military equipment. Ukraine has requested for the first time to purchase military equipment through the U.S. Department of Defense Foreign Military Sales program.

Ukraine’s Zelenskiy Calls On Putin To Meet Face-To-Face For Talks

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to talk.

Zelensky offers Putin talks involving Trump (Video) – news politics | UNIAN

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has offered Russian President Vladimir Putin the format of negotiations with the participation of U.S. President Donald Trump. Zelensky said Minsk could be a venue for possible negotiations.

Zelensky suggests meeting with Putin in Minsk – World – TASS

The Ukrainian leader suggested that the talks should be mediated by Trump, May, Merkel and Macron

UAWire – Ukrainian President Zelensky: only Trump can stop Nord Stream 2 pipeline

During his visit to Lviv, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky expressed hope that the issue of the construction of the Nord stream 2 gas pipeline will be resolved in favor of Ukraine after his meeting with US President Donald Trump, reports Ukrinform. “The question about the construction of Nord stream 2 was answered a long time ago. So, there is no need to speculate on this topic, same as people are speculating about Russia’s return to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. This happened in our presence. Nobody’s asking us. I think that neither Mrs. Merkel nor Mr. Macron will influence the process of the construction of the Nord Stream pipeline. They are influenced by local business, and they cannot do anything about it,” Zelensky said. Ukrainian President said that US President Trump is the only person who can help in resolving this issue. “Therefore, I will have a meeting with the US President in the United States, and that is the only solution. I am sure that he is the only person who will solve this issue in favor of Ukraine,” Zelensky added. The Ukrainian President also said that he will speak about the issue of the construction of Nord Stream 2 during a meeting with Polish President Andrzej Duda in in September. Earlier, the US Congress approved sanctions against the construction of Nord Stream 2 pipeline. The draft bill could be voted in the Senate and signed by the US President as early as August. The construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline is expected to be completed by the end of 2019. The 1220-km pipeline will run along the bottom of the Baltic Sea from the Russian coast to the coast of Germany. The capacity of each of the two lines is 27.5 billion cubic meters per year. The new gas pipeline will double the capacity of the first Nord Stream, the route of which it will basically repeat.

The new parliament will need to update some laws related to the implementation of the Minsk agreements – Volker

In order to implement the Minsk agreements, the Verkhovna Rada of the next convocation should deal with issues of decentralization, special status, amnesty, and the possibility of holding local elections. Such an opinion in an interview with Voice of America was voiced by Kurt Volker, the special representative of the US State Department for Ukraine, Censor.NET reports. “When a new parliament is elected, it will be necessary to update some laws on the implementation of the Minsk agreements. For example, the proposed decentralization within the framework of the Constitution, the issue of special status and amnesty and the opportunity to hold local elections when the security situation permits,” he said. According to the American diplomat, the United States supports Ukraine in this, but the Ukrainian side should conduct this process. “I will note that President [of Ukraine Vladimir] Zelensky has considerable credibility, as shown by the presidential elections, but this has not yet manifested itself in the votes in the Rada and the support of specific strategic legislation and other things. We only find out after July 21 what the results will be and whether he will form a working majority in parliament, necessary to support both the implementation plan of Minsk and the reform plan in Ukraine, ”Volker said. Источник: https://censor.net.ua/n3136116

Zelensky: We work day and night to return captured Ukrainian sailors home – news politics | UNIAN

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky says his team is working around the clock to return Ukrainian sailors detained by Russia near the Kerch Strait on November 25, 2018. The president is visiting the Ukrainian city of Odesa, which is currently hosting the annual Sea Breeze exercise.

OSCE PA Committee calls for withdrawal of Russian troops from Ukraine

The General Committee on Political Affairs and Security of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly has adopted a resolution calling for the de-occupation of Crimea and the withdrawal of Russian armed forces from Ukraine. — Ukrinform.

OSCE Parliamentary Assembly urges Russia to withdraw from Ukraine

The OSCE Parliamentary Assembly held a session in Strasbourg on Saturday; the MPs passed the resolution about the militarization of Crimea, Sevastopol, Black and Azov Seas. The document was created and promoted by Ukrainian MP Artur Herasymov. In it, the Committee urged Russia to take away its troops from Ukraine. 54 members of the Committee supported the resolution. Six voted against, another six abstained. The document states that the OSCE PA once again confirms its full respect of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders that include Crimea, Sevastopol and naval areas. The OSCE PA condemned the illegal annexation of Crimea by Russia, urging Moscow to return it to Ukraine.

Chubarov: OSCE PA’s committee backs draft resolution on Russia’s militarization of Crimea, Black and Azov seas – news politics | UNIAN

Chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People, Member of Parliament of Ukraine Refat Chubarov has said the Committee on Political Affairs and Security of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly (OSCE PA) approved a draft resolution on “The Militarization by the Russian Federation of the Temporarily Occupied Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the City of Sevastopol, Ukraine, the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov.” The resolution was backed by 54 members of the committee, six voted against it, and another six abstained.

“Zelensky is a new hope for us” – Chief Diplomat of Hungary on “language conflict” with Ukraine

The relations between Ukraine and Hungary have been two years tense, to put it mildly. They ruined after the adoption in September 2017 of the Ukrainian law on education , which, according to Budapest, restricts the rights of Ukrainian Hungarians living in Transcarpathia (the law envisages, among other things, wider implementation of the Ukrainian state language, including in educational institutions of national minorities). It was also possible for the mutual advent of the consuls and the blocking by Hungary of the dialogue between Ukraine and NATO. This “political blockade” can now be stopped by starting everything from a blank sheet, says Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Syyyarto. On the sidelines of the Toronto Canadian Reform Conference, he spoke about his vision of the situation in an interview with the correspondent of the Ukrainian service of Radio Liberty. – Mr. Minister, all this time there were always meetings between you and the head of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry, but the impression was that there would be no common language and it would not be. After all, absolutely nothing has changed. As far as I understand, right now, after the change of power in Ukraine, do you hope that everything can be in a new way? – I want to frankly say, we see the new president of Ukraine as a new hope. To be honest with you, we felt that the former President of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, was pursuing an anti-Hungarian policy. I do not know if this was done specifically or for some other reason … But without a doubt, the outcome of all his decisions was a clear policy against Hungary. And I here not only about the “educational” law , but also about the “linguistic” law , which was adopted by the Verkhovna Rada. And yet – about constant persecution (by Ukrainian – ed.) Of special services of Hungarians in Transcarpathia; yet – the office of the Hungarian organizations was twice set on fire . Many different things at the same time, which (demonstrated – ed.) – this anti-Hungarian policy. And now, with the new Ukrainian president, we relate new hopes. Because he made quite encouraging statements about this – and we really hope that after these words he will have actions. We hope that his actions (possibly after the parliamentary elections) will allow us to return our bilateral relations on a path based on mutual respect, mutual trust and mutual benefit. – But any negotiations are always a “two-way road”. Hungary is ready for compromise? – You know, we conducted a pro-Ukrainian policy. Looking back, we offered a credit line of 50 million euros for infrastructure development in Ukraine; Over the past three years, we spent a total of $ 140 million on development and assistance programs in Ukraine; Every year we offer one hundred scholarships to Ukrainian students in Hungary. We have provided medical assistance to four dozen wounded Ukrainian soldiers, we gave a weekly rest for two thousand and hundred Ukrainian boys and girls whose parents take part in battles in the east of your country … We delivered chlorine to the west of Ukraine to help provide drinking water, we have been supplying gas, providing a reverse … We have already made so many positive steps that everyone can be convinced – we are for the purpose of reaching an agreement on improving our relations. But at the same time, everyone must understand – we defend our rights. The rights that the Hungarians had. And the “educational law”, as well as the “language law”, take away the rights that they already had in the Hungarians. If these rights are returned to them, we will be pleased to cancel the veto for holding Ukraine-NATO meetings. – I correctly understood that official Budapest criticized both “educational law” and “language law”? Because of the publications in the press, it was the impression that the stumbling block – it’s just the law of education itself … – Yes, of course, we very clearly formulated it – and I do not even understand why this is a false idea in Ukraine. In both cases, we have made it very clear that both laws violate the rights of Hungarians. We even pointed out specific points to make it easier to change them and satisfy the Hungarians. – Summing up, what step from the new power team will signal to Hungary that Kyiv has come to you? “Well, look … When it comes to education, then the Hungarians living in Ukraine have had one hundred percent chance to study in their native language until the” educational law “has been passed. Therefore, we expect at least the amendments (to the law – ed.), Which will restore the rights of the Hungarians, which they already had. As for the “linguistic law” – it practically “kills” the chances of using Hungarian in state administration, culture, and the media. In this way, an amendment that will enable Hungarians to use their native language in these areas will completely satisfy us. So, if the necessary adjustments are made, which will return one hundred percent access to education in the native language and give the opportunity to speak Hungarian, for example, in certain spheres of life, then we will undoubtedly revoke the veto and consider the return of our relationship on the right path. – If we talk about – the name is this – “pressure campaign” to Ukraine, when Hungary blocks the state dialogue with NATO. The direct question – in your opinion, this “campaign” was successful? – Look … We did not do it for fun! You can be sure if we make the necessary changes to the laws related to education and language, we will be happy to leave this veto in the past. Well, listen, if you want to integrate (in NATO – ed.) Or you want to cooperate with the alliance, you must seriously respect your obligations. Ukraine annually updates its national partnership program with NATO. And this very national program very clearly states that Ukraine is committed to respecting and developing the rights of minorities. This is where you recorded! So, if you are serious about this, if you are serious about working together, then you have to commit yourself. For, as for me, since these laws violate the rights of minorities, this means that their adoption also violates your national annual program. And so, you need to understand this with yourself. – But, as far as we know, this approach is being criticized by the Americans. Did you feel pressure from them? – Undoubtedly, the Americans have raised a lot of this issue. I would not call it a “pressure” because someone who has been pressured on us – this is the Obama administration on many other issues. The Trump administration in this regard works differently. But they really often raised this question, and I always spoke clearly to the American friends that I understand – they look at this business from a completely different perspective. For them it’s a matter of geopolitics. They regard it as a geopolitical issue from the ocean. But we are neighbors! We have 150 thousand Hungarians who live here (in Ukraine – ed.), So it is not surprising that we look at all of this at a different angle and in general, we see it in a different way. So respect each other. This is my point of view. I have always been talking about the willingness to cancel the veto – and they (the American administration – Ed.) Have motivated us to this. But they also talked very frankly to us – immediately after the two laws are amended, we will be happy to cancel this veto. Radio Liberty will give the floor to leading Ukrainian officials and diplomats to respond to an interview with the head of the Hungarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

UAWire – Hungarian Foreign Minister: US urges Hungary to let Ukraine into NATO

The Hungarian Minister of Foreign Affairs, Péter Szijjártó said in an interview with Radio Liberty that the United States during negotiations with Hungary repeatedly raised the issue of Budapest’s blocking Ukraine’s entry to the North Atlantic Alliance. “For them [the US], it is a matter of geopolitics. The US sees it as a geopolitical issue from overseas. However, we’re Ukraine’s neighbors! One hundred fifty thousand Hungarians are living here [in Ukraine]. Therefore, it is not surprising that we look at all this situation from a different angle and generally see it differently,” said Szijjártó. According to him, the fact that Trump’s representatives continue to raise this issue should not be described as pressure, but “we cannot exclude a different view of the problem.” He also added that unlike ex-President Obama’s staff, which was much harsher, the current US diplomats are more loyal. Also, Szijjártó stressed that Hungary is ready to lift the veto when its requirements are met. “Immediately after the amendments are applied to these two laws [Ukrainian language and education laws], we will be happy to cancel this veto,” the Foreign Minister said. Earlier, Hungary criticized the Ukrainian law on language and education and asked to amend it and to support the rights of the national minorities living in Ukraine.

U.S. Embassy Kyiv on Twitter: “(1/2) Chargé d’Affaires William B. Taylor and Vice Admiral Lisa M. Franchetti welcomed Ukrainian, American, and European guests at a reception in honor of the 2019 Sea Breeze exercise.… https://t.co/0vV7QVS7fm”

U.S. Embassy Kyiv on Twitter: “Crimea is Ukraine! CDA Taylor traveled to the administrative boundary line of Crimea on a trip organized by the NSDC with reps from the NSDC, SBU, Ukrainian Armed Forces & Crimean Tatar community & emphasized unwavering 🇺🇸support for Ukraine’s sovereignty & territorial integrity… https://t.co/MSgPJdZlQ2”

To the Azov Sea entered the Russian “Eiysk”

Author: Editorial July 08, 2019 Azov Sea 0 Comments Russia intensified the grouping of the 1124M Black Sea Fleet of the Russian Navy in the small-scale anti-submarine ship (IGC) “Ejk” (054) in the Azov Sea. This is reported by the Ukrainian Military Portal Yesterday he passed the arch of the bridge near Kerch in the direction of the Azov Sea. In the Black Sea, he was assigned to the Novorossiysk Naval Base of the Black Sea Fleet of the Russian Navy and is a member of the 181st Division of Small Anti-Submarine Ships of the 184th Brigade of Protection of the Water Area. In addition, this part has two more IPCs of the 1124M project – Povorino (053) and Kasimov (055). The IYC “Ejk” (054) of the 1124M project was launched on April 12, 1989 at the enterprise “Leninskaya Kuznya” (modern name – “Smith on Rybalsky”) and already on February 28, 1990, it became part of the 181st Division of Small Anty-Ships 184 The Brigade of Protection of the Water Area The Black Sea Fleet of the USSR Navy with base in Poti, Georgia as IPC-217. After the collapse of the USSR, the then command of the Black Sea Fleet of the USSR Navy, it was decided to relocate the ship to Sevastopol, where it went on the night of December 31, 1991 to January 1, 1992.

Ex-chief of Ukraine’s foreign intel: Army equipped to repel invasion, strategy needs improvement – news war | UNIAN

Ex-chief of Ukraine’s Foreign Intelligence Service, General Mykola Malomuzh says that the army has weapons to repel an open full-scale invasion of Ukrainian territory by Russian troops, however, strategic preparations for this scenario are insufficient. “Strategically, we can involve allies. In addition to building up our weapons and preparedness for hostilities, we need to pursue a very effective policy with our partners, which, unfortunately, has not happened either now or earlier. Only scheduled meetings that do not form any potential from the economic or security point of view have been held so far. A team of professionals who would help [President of Ukraine Volodymyr] Zelensky in the system of security, economy, defense and the creation of innovative formats has not been formed yet,” Malomuzh told the Ukrainian news outlet Apostrophe. According to him, tactically, Ukraine has some groundwork allowing to respond to Russian aggression. As for weapons, Ukraine is better prepared here, but new developments must be introduced into the Armed Forces of Ukraine. “There are such systems as Korsar [anti-tank missile system developed by Kyiv-based Luch design bureau], Skif [Ukrainian-Belarusian anti-tank missile system]. They are comparable with [U.S.-made] Javelins and even better in some respects. [There are also] Oplot tanks. New tactical complexes, equipped with radio devices, better than the European ones. And in radio intelligence systems, our country even beats Britain, France, Germany, and Russia. We all have all this, but do not use it effectively. In many line-ups we have extremely powerful developments that can be put into service for the armed forces of Ukraine in a year and a half,” the general said. According to him, tactically, Ukraine has some groundwork allowing to respond to Russian aggression. As for weapons, Ukraine is better prepared here, but new developments must be introduced into the Armed Forces of Ukraine. “There are such systems as Korsar [anti-tank missile system developed by Kyiv-based Luch design bureau], Skif [Ukrainian-Belarusian anti-tank missile system]. They are comparable with [U.S.-made] Javelins and even better in some respects. [There are also] Oplot tanks. New tactical complexes, equipped with radio devices, better than the European ones. And in radio intelligence systems, our country even beats Britain, France, Germany, and Russia. We all have all this, but do not use it effectively. In many line-ups we have extremely powerful developments that can be put into service for the armed forces of Ukraine in a year and a half,” the general said.

UAWire – Kyiv: Russia amassing troops near Mariupol and Kharkiv

Deputy Commander of the Ukrainian Joint Forces Operation Major-General Bogdan Bondar said during a broadcast of Hromadske.TV that Russia is amassing troops along the Ukrainian-Russian border near Mariupol and Kharkiv. According to Bondar, Russia has been gradually doing this from the beginning of the conflict in the Donbas. “At the beginning of the conflict, they also had limited opportunities. However, during this time, they have built training ranges, places for the deployment of military units. They have also expanded the old facilities. There was not threat for Russia in that direction, but now they have almost rebuilt the railway, which no longer passes through the territory of Ukraine”, – said Bondar. He added that the Russian Federation had built a military infrastructure to be able to carry out the deployment of military forces and equipment in a short time. Earlier, the Chief Monitor of the OSCE Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine, Ambassador Yasar Halit Cevik, in his first address to the Permanent Council in Vienna, described the withdrawal of forces and equipment in Stanytsia Luhanska as a “commendable step forward” towards withdrawal of the forces and equipment along the entire line of contact. The separation of forces and means in the Stanytsia Luhanska began on June 26. There have been no attacks by militants in the area over the past week. For the last 24 hours, one Ukrainian soldier was killed, and six were injured in the Joint Forces Operation area.

One KIA, three WIA amid 16 enemy attacks in Donbas in past 24 hours

Russia’s hybrid military forces on Sunday mounted 16 attacks on Ukrainian army positions in Donbas in past 24 hours, with one Ukrainian soldier reported as killed in action (KIA) and another three as wounded in action (WIA), the press centre of the Joint Forces Operation (JFO) has reported.

One KIA, three WIA’s amid 16 enemy attacks in Donbas on July 7 – news war | UNIAN

Russia’s hybrid military forces on Sunday mounted 16 attacks on Ukrainian army positions in Donbas, eastern Ukraine, with one Ukrainian soldier reported as killed in action (KIA) and another three as wounded in action (WIA). Each enemy attack saw an adequate response from Ukraine’s Joint Forces.

Two Ukrainian soldiers injured in Donbas amid 12 enemy attacks July 7 – news war | UNIAN

Two Ukrainian soldiers were injured on July 7, as Russia’s hybrid military forces mounted 12 attacks on Ukrainian army positions in Donbas, eastern Ukraine. The enemy used 120mm and 82mm mortars proscribed by the Minsk Agreements.

Ukrainian Soldier Killed In Clashes With Russia-Backed Separatists

Kyiv says one of its soldiers has been killed and three others wounded in a battle with Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine.

Six Ukrainian soldiers wounded as a result of 28 attacks on Armed Forces of Ukraine in Donbas

Occupation forces in Donbas had fired on Ukrainian positions 28 times over the past 24 hours, as a result six Ukrainian soldiers were wounded, the press center of the Joint Forces Operation (JFO) has reported.

Donbas warzone update: Five Ukrainian soldiers injured amid 26 attacks in past day – news war | UNIAN

Five Ukrainian soldiers were injured as Russia-led forces mounted 26 attacks in Donbas, eastern Ukraine, on Saturday, July 6. No enemy shelling was left without an adequate response on the part of Joint Forces.

Zelensky says Ukraine ready to unilaterally rebuild bridge near Stanytsia Luhanska

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said that Ukraine is ready to unilaterally begin rebuilding a bridge near the village of Stanytsia Luhanska in Luhansk region if dismantling of fortifications built in the Russia-occupied area does not begin within a week.

The place of Krivonos in the SOF was taken by the commander of the 8th regiment of special forces Nechaev.

Commander of the 8th Special Purpose Regiment of military unit 0553 (Khmelnitsky) officer Oleg Nechayev was appointed first deputy commander of the Special Operations Forces of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. Reports Tsenzor.NET with reference to LB.ua. “In the new position I will do everything in my power to strengthen the combat capabilities of the SSO and to speedily release our land from the aggressor,” said Nechaev in the commentary to the publication. The position has been vacant since March 12, 2019, when Colonel Sergey Krivonos was appointed First Deputy Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council. It should be noted that Colonel Nechaev was awarded with orders of Bogdan Khmelnitsky, III and II degrees, other medals and insignia, in particular firearms, for the successful military operations of the division he headed during armed resistance to Russian aggression and protection of sovereignty and territorial integrity of the state. Recently, he completed his studies at the operational-strategic faculty of the National University of Defense. Chernyakhovsky. Источник: https://censor.net.ua/n3136109

Russian TV channel releases video with Ukraine-taken terrorist who said he hid Buk missile launcher

Russian TV channel Nastoyashcheye Vremya released an archive video, where Volodymyr Tsemakh, the former AA defense chief of the so-called “Donetsk People’s Republic” recognized that he hid the Buk missile launcher. This particuar kind of weapon was used during the Russian occupants’ attack on MH17 civilian aircraft in the occupied area of eastern Ukraine in July 2014. In the video, Tsemakh told the reporter his own story of what happened that day; he said that the local armed mercenaries aimed the Ukrainian military planes, one of which shot Boeing 777 of Malaysian Airlines. He said they allegedly managed to shoot down one of the Ukrainian planes. Then, he said that he got some boy [outside the destroyed Boeing], and that he was hiding something (02:24). The video may be found here. “One of the words in this quote was made inaudible by this video’s creators, but if one reads the lipsync carefully, it could be the word Buk, the SAM system”, the TV channel explained when telling the story about Tsemakh’s detention. The Russian mercenary was detained in Snizhne, Donetsk region last week. Ukraine’s SBU, the State Security Service claimed he could prove a valuable witness in the MH17 case.

UAWire – Girkin confirms that militant captured by Ukrainian Security Service was commander of air defense during MH17 air disaster

Ex-Minister of Defense of the so-called DPR (Donetsk People’s Republic) Igor Girkin (Strelkov) confirmed that the Lieutenant Colonel Vladimir Tsemakh who had been captured by the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) in the town of Snizhne, was “the commander of the air defense” of the pro-Russia militants in July 2014. “Borisovich” (a nickname of Tsemakh) was the chief of air defense in Snizhne in July-August 2014. Before that, he was the crew commander of of ZU-23-2 anti-air systems in Semenovka, and he excelled at this position,” — Girkin wrote on his VKontakte page. At the same time, Girkin insists that Tsemakh and other militants are not responsible for the Boeing MN-17 crash. Daughter of Tsemakh previously said that her father was appointed as “the chief of air defense in October 2014”. Earlier, journalist Yuri Butusov said that Tsemakh is vital for the investigation because previously there were no witnesses in the case of Boeing MN-17 that was shot down near the town of Snizhne in the Donbas.

Russian MP states she saw from space, how people died in Donbas

Ukraine’s Armed Forces attack civilians in Donbas, – Russian MP

MH17 case being transferred from Ukraine to Netherlands – news politics | UNIAN

Ukrainian Deputy Minister of Justice for European Integration Sergiy Petukhov has said the Netherlands has started the procedure of transferring the criminal case on the downing of MH17 from Ukraine. The trial of suspects will begin on March 9, 2020.

Mariupol, French company sign agreement on improving drinking water supply for city

Mariupol city and French company Beten Ingenierie have signed an agreement on the intentions to improve drinking water supply of the city, according to the Mariupol City Council. — Ukrinform.

UAWire – Ukrainian President Zelensky: it is necessary win back the minds of Donbas residents

During the presentation of the new Donetsk Regional State Administrator Pavlo Kirilenko in Kramatorsk, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky noted that it is essential to remind the residents of the Donbas territories not controlled by Ukraine that they are Ukrainians and to fight for that, reports Interfax-Ukraine. “It is important to win back the minds of our people who live in the temporarily occupied territories. We can do that through a stable payment of pensions, and comfortable passage through the entry points. There are many issues connected to that,” said Volodymyr Zelensky. Also, he believes that it is crucial to work on ending the war in the Donbas, and the restoration of the region at the same time. “I think that we do not have to blame war or the other side all the time. We need to work to end the war and at the same time to think about our people, as well as to restore the Donbas”, – said the Ukrainian President. On July 5, Volodymyr Zelensky appointed Pavel Kirilenko as the Regional State Administrator of Donetsk. Earlier, Kirilenko was serving as the military Prosecutor of the Uzhgorod garrison of the Western region of Ukraine. Kirilenko is 33 years old. The President also appointed Vladimir Petrichenko as a new head of the Main Department of the Security Service of Ukraine in Donetsk and Lugansk regions.

The purpose of Ukraine is strong Naval Forces

The purpose of Ukraine is strong Naval Forces equipped with modern ships. President Zelensky announced this on July 7, during a working visit to Odesa region during the celebration of the Day of the Ukrainian Naval Forces and the holding of the Ukrainian-American exercises Sea Breeze 2019. “Our common goal is strong Naval Forces of Ukraine equipped with modern ships and armament. On this path, we feel the strong support of our international friends and partners who stand side by side with us in the ranks,” the President emphasized addressing the sailors. Our common goal is strong and modern Naval Forces Our common goal is strong and modern Naval Forces During the speech, the President of Ukraine paid tribute to the marines killed by the shelling of a medical vehicle near Vodiane. At the same time, the Head of State assured that he was doing everything possible for the return of Ukrainian seamen captured by the Russian Federation. In addition, Volodymyr Zelensky took part in the ceremony of conferring the honorary title “The Name of Rear Admiral Mikhail Bilinsky” to the 36th Marine Brigade, as well as “The Name of the Vice Admiral Volodymyr Bezkorovoyny” Naval Lyceum. The President of Ukraine also visited the moorage of the Toronto frigate of the Canadian Naval Forces, the Duncan destroyer of the British Naval Forces, the Ukrainian assault boat Stanislav and the Hetman Sahaidachny frigate of the AFU Naval Forces.

New Ukrainian assault boats showed in Odessa

At the celebrations for the Day of Naval Forces in Odessa, a new Ukrainian development was shown – two assault landing boats equipped with a volley fire system and combat modules. These boats – part of the project 58503 (“Centaur”), reports Censor. NO with reference to “Radio Svoboda” . They were launched in September 2018 at the Forge on Rybatsky Kiev shipyard. A few months later the assault boats arrived in Odessa, and since then they have passed state tests. When the tests are completed, it is planned that the boat will be used by the marines. In memory of the dead marines – Senior Ensign Alexander Yakhnovsky and junior sergeant Sergei Sonko, and at the request of the territorial communities where the dead are from, these two specific vessels were named Malin and Stanislav. Also during the celebrations, a minute of silence honored the recently killed driver and sanitary instructor of the marines Sergey Mayboroda and Irina Shevchenko. The solemn ceremony was attended by the President of Ukraine Vladimir Zelensky, as well as the relatives of 24 captured sailors. Источник: https://censor.net.ua/n3136112

“Stanislav” and “Malin” – the names of “Centaurs”

Posted by Editorial July 07, 2019 Naval Force 0 Comments Today, up to the day of the Naval Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, future landing and assault rifles of the Ukrainian military fleet type “Centaur-LC” will receive their names. This is reported by the Ukrainian Military Portal One of them is named in honor of the village Stanislav, the second one will be named from the city of Malin in the Zhytomyr region. The names of “Malin” and “Stanislav” were received in honor of the memory of their countrymen – the marines of the senior ensign Alexander Yakhnovsky and the younger sergeant Sergei Sonk, who gave their lives during the tasks of defense of Ukraine. The boats are already based on the Navy of the Ukrainian Armed Forces in Odessa where they were able to photograph: The landing assault boats of the 58503 “Centaur-LC” project, launched on the water on September 14, 2018, are under trial and proof. Recall that during the test of assault boats project 58503 cipher “Centaur-LC” revealed a discrepancy with the maximum speed to the declared performance characteristics Also during the tests, a number of other deficiencies discovered in the course of experimental exploitation were fixed.

For Coast Guard, refits of “Darnitsya” and “Kalkan-P” boats

Yacht Navhof Navigal LTD will carry out repairs of the Marine Guard boats. This is reported by Nikolayev – the city of ships This is a boat BG-10 of the project 09104, the code “Kalkan-P” with factory number 205, and “Darnitsa” (BG-116) of the project 1400M, the code “Grif-M” with the factory number 909. Yacht-yard Navigal Ltd is one of the oldest privately-owned small-tonnage shipbuilding enterprises in Mykolayiv, which for a long time specialized in the construction of aluminum cases. According to the repair information for boats, the replacement of the sheets of the outer sheath and the flooding of the corrodes of the underwater part will be performed. High-speed patrol boat пр. 0914 “Kalkan-P” was developed and built at the Nikolaev Shipyard “Lyman”, which is now a shipbuilding plant “Nibulon”. The boat has a body with AMG, and a felling of fiberglass. The boat body is specially designed for high speeds, which allows it to go on glossing already at 16 knots. Patrol boat BG-10 of the project 09104 code “Kalkan-P” Photo: Vitaliy Vashutkin Rolls-Royce water jumper was used as a propeller. With a small sediment, it provides high maneuverability and the ability to approach an untapped coast in coastal areas of the sea or shipping rivers and lakes. The boat has a spacious cabin with sleeping areas, a gazebo, a shower, a galley, a wheelchair, a spacious cockpit. Kater пр. Пр. 0914 «Kalkan-P» can be used for patrol, nature protection and fishery protection tasks. The manufacturer of his time offered a civil version of the boat. General characteristics of the boat pr. 0914 “Kalkan-P” Displacement : 7.86 tons Length : 11.04 meters Width : 3.20 meters Draft : 0.60 meters Main engine : CATERPILLAR, 448 kW (609 hp) Speed : 40-42 knots Crew : 2 people Passengers : 6 people “Darnitsa” (BG-116) during the service in Sevastopol in 2012 Photo: Alexxx1979 / Wikipedia The “Darnytsya” patrol boat (BG-116) of the 1400M project, the “Grif-M” cipher, was built in 1993 at the shipyard “Mor” in Feodosia. It is designed for action in coastal areas, straits and open raids of ports, as well as rivers and lakes. Technical characteristics of 1400M boats: Displacement : 39.7 tons Length : 23.8 meters Width : 5.0 meters Crew : 10 people Arms : I / D machine gun with a 12.7 mm caliber

Motor Sich introduced Mi-8MSB with a “glass cockpit”

Posted by: Editorial July 08, 2019 Important, News of the military-industrial complex 0 Comments Ukrainian company PJSC “Motor-Sich” presented a “glass cabin” for a new version of the modernization of the helicopter Mi-8MSB This is reported by the Ukrainian Military Portal Works on the development of a “glass cabin”, or as it is called – “cab display,” was conducted by the Kiev company “Stork”. The new cockpit panel got rid of analogue indicators in lieu of electrons, as well as on the helicopter itself, a new avionics was installed. The development work lasted several years “The first draft of the glass cabin was in the form of an image on the computer monitor screen in October 2015, a bit later, a structural scheme and equipment were introduced,” the company’s press service writes in Instagram. The developer announces a long-lasting work ahead of us, but stopping at the end is no longer going to happen. New panel of cockpit of helicopter Mi-8 MSB development “Motor-Sich” Photo: Motor Sich As for the complete set of equipment installed in the new cabin at the moment there is no information. The site “PTC” Stork “managed to find publication on the certification of helicopters Mi-8, Mi-8MTV and Mi-8MSB of the navigational tactical system EuroNav 7 with the function of HTAWS and the publication on the installation of the above-mentioned helicopters and the modernization of the solid state onboard sound recorder information SSCVR “ORT”. In December 2016, the Mi-8MSB-T helicopter installed and demonstrated a navigation and tactical digital RN7 generator and Esterline’s MDU268 multifunction display:

The “Kozak-2M1” MRAP has passed state tests

Author: Editorials July 08, 2019 News of the military-industrial complex 0 Comments The state tests of the armored car “Kozak-2M1” were completed and developed by the “Practice” NGO This is reported by the Ukrainian Military Portal Relevant work in the interests of the Armed Forces of Ukraine was carried out by the State Institute of Testing and Certification of Arms and Military Equipment. Kozak-2M1 – a tactical armored car for small combat groups with a total weight of 12 tons. • Wheel formula: 4×4. • Armored Corps: with ballistic protection level of CCD-5. • crew: up to 9 people. • Engine: IVECO 5.9-liter turbodiesel, 280 hp and a maximum torque of 950 Nm. • gearbox: mechanical, 6-speed, ZF stamps Earlier, the Armed Forces of Ukraine had already received armored cars “Kozak-2” manufactured by “Practice”, the new modernization of the car before delivery to the troops must undergo all the necessary tests. The development of the new version began on the basis of a joint decision of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine “On the opening of research and development work on the development of a specialized armored vehicle for the needs of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the code” Kozak-2M “. State tests included passing of wanderers, driving off the road, the convenience of landing, and so on. Also, the entire cycle of state tests completed the armored car “Bars-8” development and production company “Bogdan” We remind that recently, 95 separate assault and assault brigades received 33 BCM “Kozak-2” cars. BCM “Kozak-2” is serially released from July 2015. The users are the National Guard of Ukraine and the State Border Guard Service.

For the Armed Forces of Ukraine, they are testing an IED jammer

Author: Editorials July 08, 2019 News of the military-industrial complex 0 Comments State Enterprise “Novator” has started mass production of the special system “Oberig-S” This is reported by the press service of Ukroboronprom It is designed to protect soldiers from radio-controlled explosives – mines, bombers, and the like. Oberig can suppress any command transfer to undermine through radio stations and mobile phones in the range of 20 to 4000 MHz. In fact, in the area of “Oberogu”, no receiver operating the detonator of an explosive device operates. It provides guaranteed protection of fighters, important objects and civilians. The “Oberig-C” feature is that it can be installed on armored vehicles and vehicles, ensuring the protection of the entire pillar of technology during the movement. This avoids losses on marches or parking lots from buried bombs. It can also be installed on stationary objects such as checkpoints, hospitals, ammunition depots or control and communication centers. System “Oberig-S” Photo: Ukroboronprom The massive use of “Oberog” allows you to create, even in the most dangerous places with the highest risk of a terrorist attack, protected “green zones”. In addition, “Novator” has developed a lighter version of this system – “Oberig-N”, which can be transferred by one soldier. This version is intended for the protection of deminers during demining, local suppression of communication, as well as the protection of fighters during special operations. System “Oberig-N” Photo: Ukroboronprom Currently, Oberig-N is undergoing state tests, which, with positive results and inclusion in the Defense Orders, will be able to be supplied to the Ukrainian Army.

Parubii: New Electoral Code can be adopted on July 11

08.07.19 16:43 – Parubii: New Electoral Code can be adopted on July 11 Verkhovna Rada Chairman Andrii Parubii has said he is convinced that the new Electoral Code can be adopted on July 11. View news.

Zelensky taps new Zakarpattia governor, promises turbulent times for smugglers – news politics | UNIAN

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has appointed Ihor Bondarenko as new Head of Zakarpattia Regional State Administration. The president stressed his team was determined to combat smuggling.

Zelensky appoints new Lviv governor – news politics | UNIAN

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has appointed Markiyan Malsky as new Head of Lviv Regional State Administration. Malsky said the proposal to lead the region had been a surprise for him.

Bakanov introduces new SBU head in Lviv region

Acting Head of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) Ivan Bakanov has introduced Oleksandr Bondaruk as new head of the SBU Office in Lviv region. — Ukrinform.

Court rejects Party of Pensioners’ lawsuit to cancel registration of Saakashvili as candidate for deputy

The Sixth Administrative Court of Appeals on July 6 refused to satisfy the claim of the Party of Pensioners of Ukraine against the Central Election Commission on the legality of registering ex-President of Georgia Mikheil Saakashvili as a candidate for parliamentary elections in Ukraine on the list of the Rukh Novykh Syl party.

Rock star seeks to upstage comedian president in Ukraine vote – Reuters

Standing on stage in a black t-shirt, Ukrainian rock star Sviatoslav Vakarchuk turns to his massed ranks of fans and asks if they are fed up about how their country is run.

Ukraine’s NDSC Secretary Danyliuk admits interest in prime minister’s post – news politics | UNIAN

Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) of Ukraine Oleksandr Danyliuk has said he is interested in the post of prime minister of Ukraine. Danyliuk confirms his interest in the position of the head of government.

Member of Zelensky’s Office: Ukraine turns into ‘world hub’ for smuggling cigarettes to Europe – news economics | UNIAN

Deputy Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine Oleksiy Honcharuk says the country has turned into a ‘world hub’ for smuggling cigarettes to Europe, which affects Ukraine’s image in the European Union. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky met with customs officers in the city of Uzhgorod on July 6.

Why Ukraine is changing the spelling of its capital

Official site of The Week Magazine, offering commentary and analysis of the day’s breaking news and current events as well as arts, entertainment, people and gossip, and political cartoons.

First batch of U.S. crude oil unloaded in Ukraine’s Odesa port – news economics | UNIAN

The first batch of U.S. crude oil in Ukraine’s history was unloaded in the port of Odesa on July 6. It is planned to be transmitted to the Kremenchuk oil refinery through the Odesa-Kremenchuk oil pipeline.

UAWire – For the first time in history Ukraine receives oil from the US

The first batch of oil from the USA arrived at the port of the Ukrainian city of Odesa. According to the press service of the port, 75 thousand …

The first load of American oil in the history of Ukraine was delivered to Odessa. A PHOTO

The first oil batch in the history of Ukraine is unloaded from the USA at the oil terminal of the port of Odessa. It is reported by the press service of the administration of the Odessa sea port, informs Tsenzor.NET . According to the information, at 7:20 am the tanker Wisdom Venture was delivered on the berth No. 2N of the port of Odessa, which went under the flag of Hong Kong, which delivered 75 thousand tons of oil from the USA. A batch of oil was purchased by OAO Ukrtantnafta for processing at the facilities of the Kremenchug refinery. The administration said that the next tanker with oil could arrive in Odessa in August of this year. Источник: https://censor.net.ua/p3136097

Proposed teleconference between Ukrainian, Russian TV channels sparks outrage in Ukraine | KyivPost – Ukraine’s Global Voice

It hearkened back to the Soviet era of televised “Space Bridges” between America and the USSR. But this was no history lesson. On July 7, Moscow’s propagandistic state-controlled Russia 24 television channel announced that it would partner with Ukraine’s pro-Russian NewsOne channel to air a television conference between the people of the two countries. It would be called “We Need to Talk.” But Ukrainians didn’t see this as an opportunity to promote understanding with the citizens of Russia. Instead, the planned teleconference sparked outrage across the country and protests in Kyiv — promptly leading to the broadcast’s cancellation. Even President Volodymyr Zelensky got involved. On July 8, he termed the planned broadcast a “cheap but dangerous PR stunt.” Instead, he called upon Putin to meet with him in Minsk, Belarus in the presence of United States President Donald Trump, British Prime Minister Theresa May, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron. “We don’t reject any diplomatic formats, we offer to talk,” Zelensky said. “We need to talk, indeed.” Zelensky has never met or talked with Putin as president. Meanwhile, Russia has intensified its military, economic and diplomatic pressure on Ukraine since the politically inexperienced Zelensky took office in May. The televised conference, scheduled for July 12, would have been the first joint TV show between the two countries since Russia annexed Crimea and started the war in eastern Ukraine in 2014. Russian television anchor Dmitry Kiselev, widely regarded as the country’s chief propagandist, first announced the teleconference on July 7. He compared it to the “Space Bridge,” a series of interactive teleconferences between people of the U.S. and the USSR, which were broadcast in the 1980s. The NewsOne channel, which is allegedly controlled by pro-Russian politician Viktor Medvedchuk, claimed in its statement on July 8 that the teleconference was to be held “between the common people of Ukraine and Russia” and that viewers are “looking forward to this event.” Medvedchuk is running to parliament as the third candidate on the party list of the pro-Russian Opposition Platform — For Life political party. According to polls, it has the second highest level of support after Zelensky’s party for the upcoming July 21 parliamentary elections. Zelensky claimed the teleconference was specially scheduled right before elections in order to artificially divide the country into two camps: nationalists and pro-Russian voters. “The politicians who strongly want to get into parliament are now manipulating you,” Zelensky said. If the televised conference were to spark clashes, it would create “great footage for Russian TV” and allow Russia to appeal for an end to Western sanctions as Ukraine supposedly refuses to engage in dialogue, the president added. Zelensky also called on the nation to remain calm and announced that the government would have an “appropriate reaction.” He did not provide any further details. After news of the pro-Russian teleconference broke, Ivan Bakanov, the acting head of the SBU state security service, initiated an urgent meeting of the National Security and Defense Council. In a statement published on the SBU website, Bakanov said that the agency has issued a warning to the media-holding News, which owns NewsOne, saying it will be held responsible for carrying out the conference with a Russian broadcaster sanctioned by the Ukrainian government. Bakanov said he would propose that the National Security and Defense Council impose sanctions against the television channels involved in the conference. On the morning of July 8, dozens of representatives of the Golos political party of rock singer Svyatoslav Vakarchuk picketed in front of NewsOne’s headquarters. Several more protests were scheduled there later in the day. NewsOne later announced it would cancel the show due to threats of physical violence against the channel, its journalists and their families.

Kremlin hails Russian-Ukrainian televised linkup initiative

The Kremlin welcomed the initiative on holding a televised linkup between Russia and Ukraine as the peoples need to talk, despite the political and diplomatic problems in the relations between the two countries.

Zelensky asks Ukrainians to stay calm due to announced telethon with Russia

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky urged Ukrainians not to react to provocations concerning the announcement of the creation of a teleconference bridge with Russia, as he said in his video appeal. Zelensky stated that the aim of this bridge is the separation of the people into two camps. He asked Ukrainians to stay calm. “I ask you to stay calm and not to react to provocations. Our reaction will be respective to preserve calmness, order and informational security of the country,” he said.

Speaker: VR committee to develop bill preventing TV link-up with Russian TV channel

The Verkhovna Rada’s Committee on Freedom of Speech and Information Policy will develop a bill that will make it impossible to hold a TV link-up between Ukraine’s NewsOne and Russia’s state-owned channel Russia 24. — Ukrinform.

Danyliuk regards announced TV link-up with Russia as provocation

Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine Oleksandr Danyliuk calls provocation an announcement of a “tele-bridge” between the propaganda Russia-24 channel banned in Ukraine and one of the Ukrainian channels.

Tymoshenko blames initiative of holding TV link with Russian channel on ex-president Poroshenko

The initiative to hold a television link between the Ukrainian TV channel NewsOne and a Russian one was a result of policies of the fifth president of Ukraine, Petro Poroshenko, Batkivschyna party leader Yulia Tymoshenko said.

Ukraine’s NewsOne cancels TV link-up with Russia-1 TV channel – news politics | UNIAN

The Ukrainian NewsOne TV channel has cancelled the so-called “Need to Talk” TV link-up with the Russian propaganda Russia-1 TV channel. The Ukrainian channel says its journalists and their relatives are allegedly facing threats of physical violence.

Official trailer of Ukraine-made Ilovaisk motion picture appeared on Youtube – Ilovaisk: Film trailer appears on the Web – 112.international

The motion picture is based on real-life events during the 2014 Battle of Ilovaisk, one of the most intense points in the whole conflict in eastern Ukraine; the premiere is scheduled for August 29, which marks the fifth anniversary of the battle. The official trailer of Ilovaisk motion picture appeared on the Internet. The film is based on real-life events during the 2014 Battle of Ilovaisk, one of the most intense points in the whole conflict in eastern Ukraine; the film directed by Ivan Tymchenko will be first screened in cinemas across Ukraine on August 29, which marks the fifth anniversary of the battle. The main cast includes Taras Kostanchuk, Anastasia Renard, Ruslan Sokolnyk, Serhiy Dzyaglyk, Oleg Drach, Oleksandr Mavryts and Yevhen Lamakh. The characters are portrayed by professional actors, as well as volunteers and witnesses, the veterans of Donbas battalion.

Yaroslav Trofimov on Twitter: “Snyder on why Ukraine should standardize its own version of Russian and use it as a weapon vs Putin: “Ukraine is the largest country in the world, and probably the largest country in the history of the world, where people can say what they want in Russian” https://t.co/v2bSZiy1x0”

Historian Snyder on Language, Zelenskyy and Vakarchuk

American historian specializing in Eastern Europe argues that Ukraine should embrace and regulate Russian language and actually use it as a weapon against the

Caught in Ukraine’s violence, war and identity crisis | Europe | Al Jazeera

Alarm raised over ultra-nationalist attacks following 50 incidents of political violence last year.

Natalia A. Feduschak: The view from Jerusalem on Ukraine’s Jewish president | KyivPost – Ukraine’s Global Voice

JERUSALEM — I am drinking a latte at a café overlooking Jerusalem’s Old City, eavesdropping on two animated conversations occurring concurrently in English and in French. “I didn’t have a choice to come here,” says a white-bearded gentleman, dressed in a white shirt, black vest and black hat. “But now that I am here, I am the luckiest person I know.” His companion, sitting in a plush chair across from him, listens intently. “I came here eight years ago, I worked for a rabbi, I retired three weeks ago. And here I am,” the white-bearded man says. “It’s dangerous to be a Jew in America these days. And France isn’t good either.” He pauses. “Did you know Ukraine just elected a new president? He’s Jewish.” Continuing to eavesdrop, I finally overcome my diffidence, rise from a comfortable corner and ask if I may join their conversation. The men nod, as their wives continue conversing in French. I am here for a visit from Ukraine, I say. What do they know about Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine’s new president? They seem to be erudite men, so the question is not misplaced. What do they think his election means for Ukraine? How in their views will it affect the Ukrainian-Jewish relationship? The conversation becomes spirited. Zelensky’s election is positive, they say. (The 41-year-old Zelensky was inaugurated on May 20, 2019, having won 73 percent of the votes cast in the second round of a contested race against former President Petro Poroshenko.) It is too early to forecast what it means for the Ukrainian-Jewish or Ukrainian-Israeli relationships, but they expect both will improve. More importantly, with their vote Ukrainians showed they are starting a new chapter in their history. Compared to other places in Europe today, Ukraine looks like it is becoming a good place for Jews. We continue to chat. The white-bearded gentleman is a transplant from Florida, whose wife, originally from France, insisted eight years ago they move to Israel. The other man has a long association with this land. Indeed, he fought under Moshe Dayan, the Israeli military leader and politician, whose parents were from Zhashkiv, a city of 14,000 people in Cherkasy Oblast located 150 kilometers south of Kyiv. The daylight wanes. I thank the men for the conversation and leave.

US college with Ukrainian roots wants to forge new links with the old country | KyivPost – Ukraine’s Global Voice

JENKINTOWN, Pennsylvania — A college that was started by Ukrainian nuns in 1947 to cater for post-war Ukrainian women refugees has grown into one of the most praised multicultural, coeducational colleges near Philadelphia, a city of 1.6 million people which prides itself on having one of the highest numbers of prestigious educational establishments in the U.S. The Pennsylvania college in Jenkintown, with just 4,000 residents, is proud that its 750 students now come from all the ethnic backgrounds that make up American society. It strives to maintain a Ukrainian flavor, but the college now only has a handful of students of Ukrainian background, around 10 from Ukraine itself. However, it wants to increase its ties with Ukraine and would like to attract more students from there, something the college president, Jonathan Peri, believes will enrich the educational experience for both Americans and Ukrainians. Manor College has its roots in the work of three nuns from the Basilian order of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church (UGCC) who arrived in the U.S. in 1911 and established a full-time elementary school for the children of the many immigrants arriving in the state. The sisters went on to establish English-language classes and an evening school system for Ukrainian immigrants, a printing and publishing house which produced a newspaper, an orphanage, and a carpet factory. In the following years, they were instrumental in opening three Ukrainian high schools in New York city, Hamtramck in Michigan, and Fox Chase, Pennsylvania. Located on a 35-acre campus, it is practically neighbors with a large Ukrainian social center and school that caters for Philadelphia’s substantial Ukrainian community. The college offers more than 50 courses at pre-degree levels. But because it has performed so well and proved it can teach programs at a high level, the college has been granted the right to award Bachelor degrees in 15 of its subjects including two that the college has developed a reputation for excellence in – dental hygiene and veterinary technology programs. Other subjects it caters to include accounting, business administration, psychology, criminal justice, law enforcement, liberal studies, computer studies, public policy and healthcare. The cultural stamp of its Ukrainian founders clearly remains in the college buildings. Walking around the corridors and lecture halls you pass there are Ukrainian trident symbols and crosses, and prints, paintings and historic photos of Ukrainian-related subjects. The library and bookshelves in classrooms contain books in Ukrainian and English-language books about Ukraine. Peri, the college’s president since 2015, said because of its “unique identity as America’s only accredited institution of higher education founded by Ukrainian Catholic sisters,” Manor College has a strong sense of obligation to explore recent and ongoing global events about Ukraine as well as an abiding interest in preserving Ukrainian culture. To that end, the college organizes “dialogues” where members of the local community are invited to learn about topical issues in discussions with experts on Ukraine. Recent such events have covered Russian aggression in the Kerch Strait, the recognition of Ukraine’s independent Orthodox Church, the Kremlin’s war in eastern Ukraine, and its use of cyber-warfare. Peri said: “We invite all of our community, Ukrainians and non-Ukrainians, anyone who wants to hear about what we have to say on Ukraine. Our guests have included Congresspeople, diplomats, religious leaders, and business executives.”

Oliver Stone’s “Revealing Ukraine” documentary wins Grand Prix at Film Festival in Taormina

In his documentary Stone aimed to track the history of Ukraine since the Soviet Union collapse and acquiring independence until now. Oliver Stone’s “Revealing Ukraine” documentary wins Grand Prix in the 65th Film Festival in Taormina. Ukrainian TV-presenter Oksana Marchenko came up to the stage to receive the award for the documentary film about crisis in Ukraine.

Chernobyl Disaster at 30: Futile Attempts to Contain Damage | Time

Trains full of contaminated meat roamed the USSR for years, leaving a trail of radioactivity, looking for a town willing to accept the cargo

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