Skip to comments.Breaking News: Russian Troops Intervening in Ukraine Elections
Posted on 11/23/2004 4:38:52 PM PST by ModelBreaker
From: Bob Schaffer
Sent: Tuesday, November 23, 2004 12:10 PM
Friends: some of you know I am in Ukraine as an election monitor. The presidential election was Sunday. There was rampant cheating and falsification reported throughout the country. I can't go into all details of election. I'm using a blackberry to communicate with lots of USA people, news agencies and Ukrainians. Please check news sources on the Ukrainian election background if you're not familiar. Also, I'll be regularly updating the Denver Post. They're setting their web site to post my updates.
Here's the latest:
Russian special forces dressed in Ukrainian Special forces uniforms are in Kyiv. Ukrainian militia have been instructed by the mayor to protect the people from the Russian troops. Ukrainian militia have established a hotline for Ukrainians to report any incidents with the Russians and pledged to protect Ukrainians. These Russians flew into Ukraine this morning. They're now surrounding the administration buildings they say "to protect Kuchma (the outgoing president and his PM Yanukovich). Following is a chain of email messages I've been sending by blackberry. Please pass along to others. Bob Schaffer
PETER: PLEASE SEE UPDATES BELOW. GETTING QUITE SERIOUS NOW. OUR EMBASSY'S PHONES ARE DOWN AND WE'RE NOT SURE THEY'RE AWARE OF THE NEWS OF RUSSIANS (SEE BELOW). YES, PLEASE SEND INFO TO ANYONE YOU CAN, ESPECIALLY PRESS. BOB
---------- Dan: is there anything you can do to alert someone in the Denver media to look at news coming out of Ukraine? I know this isn't our normal "beat," but this seems quite serious here. I'll paste below a message I just sent to a ukrainian group. I've been updating several people by blackerrying them events from the street and from the local news. Bob
---------- Yes. I'm safe for now. Demonstrators are reassembling in Kyiv. They're coming back stronger than yesterday coming in from the rest of the country. The authorities are trying to stop them. Cars and busses are being stopped by police at the outskirts of the city. The authorities have scattered road spikes on inbound lanes to stop traffic/protesters. People are walking down the highways to protest. Trains into the city have been stopped.
The parliament is meeting now but without the president's supporters or the Communists. After several speeches, they called Yushchenko to the podium to swear him in as the new president (escorted to the podium with guards). The Rada Speaker Litvin walked out. Then the TV station (only one station covers anything about the election and it only covers 30% of the country) went off then cut to news and footage from earlier in the day. This is similar to the revolution in Georgia.
It seems the opposition has now claimed control of the parliament and most likely named Yushchenko as the president. He walked to the podium with a Bible and a copy of the oath in his hand. 300,000 pro-Yushchenko supporters are in the city square and watched what I described above on a jumbo TV. They're celebrating what they believe is their new president. Provocateurs are infiltrating the crowd. Special forces are said to be moving in to disband the crowd. This is now a clearly declared revolutionary effort. A confrontation seems unavoidable now.
It's very tense here. School has been cancled (again) for tomorrow. I'll report more as I learn it.
Now we hear Yushchenko is headed to the city center to address the masses. His lieutenants will be giving instructions to the people outside the Rada building on "what to do."
Telephones in the outlying towns have been shut off.
Now we hear there are Russians in Ukrainian special forces uniforms.
I'll report more as I learn it. May God bless and protect Ukraine and her people.
A representative of the Greek Catholic Church (a man who appeared to be a priest -- dressed as one) announced at the demonstration that he was speaking on behalf of the Greek Catholic Churchn the Kyiv Patriarchiat and several Protestant denominations (Lutheran was the only specific one I heard but there were several others). He said this coalition of churches recognizes Yushchenko as president.
Yuschenko is now leading 1 million people from the square and surrounding streets to the administration headquarters of the Ukrainian government. He is in front of the column and many fear he is vulnerable to getting shot. They should be at the steps in 15 mins. Keep in mind, this is where the Russian special forces are stationed, dresses in Ukrainian garb.
If violence comes to define this revolution it will likely be within minutes.
The Georgian President (surrounded by Orthodox priests) just appeared on Ukrainian TV congratulating and encouraging the opposition supporters and "President" Victor Yushchenko. He spoke in Ukrainian which is very significant.
The Russian special forces just stopped the crowd approaching the administration headquarters.
Sent via BlackBerry
Probably not appropriate. People join my ping list only for info on specific kinds of threads. I think you should rely on posting this in "breaking news" and then hoping for the best.
Sounds like the Russkies are watching the administration to make sure they leave office on schedule. This is interesting. If the Russians send a couple of tank divisions into Ukraine it will be quite a bit more interesting.
I was working the switchboard at the AP the night the Soviets sent tanks into Poland during the Solidarity protests. Very exciting time in the newsroom, and we couldn't get a single phone call through, just bits and pieces from any calls that people could get out.
Now it's coming through on a blackberry. Cool.
Supporters of Ukraine's opposition presidential candidate Viktor Yushchenko take part in a rally in Kiev's main Independence Square, November 23, 2004. Ukrainian opposition chief Yushchenko told tens of thousands of protesters to march to parliament, where an emergency session on a disputed presidential election was to begin shortly. (Mykola Lazarenko/Reuters)
Ukraine's opposition presidential candidate Viktor Yushchenko takes an oath with his hand on a bible at the parliament hall in Kiev, November 23, 2004. Ukraine plunged deeper into turmoil with the losing candidate in presidential elections reading the oath of office in parliament while some 200,000 supporters outside demanded that the government admit it had cheated.
I doubt the US goes anywhere with this except to issue stern warnings. I think the folks there are going to have to make their own liberty.
By the way, just curious, considering that the majority of soldiers and officers in Ukraine's army are against the opposition (1 1-star admiral has come for the opposition) and Ukraine has a large army, why would they need Russians to protect them when they can do it themselves? Ukrainians even make up 20% of the Russian contract military.
at 4:15 a.m. on November 4, 1956, Soviet forces launched a major attack on Hungary aimed at crushing, once and for all, the spontaneous national uprising that had begun 12 days earlier.
The exit polls were only in Kiev and western Ukraine, the majority of the population lives in south and eastern ukraine.
Except that the majority of the population is against the nationalist western Ukrainians.
You mean the exit polls are...(gasp) skewed????
Good guy owned by Soros who has stated and his party already attempted to pull their troops out of Iraq. Some good guy. He also made blatent anti-Semetic statements and anti Russian and anti about everyone who is not a catholic western ukrainian (his power base). Oh and they are about 2/5ths of the pop.
Why is President Bush backing him? If what is said is true about pulling the troops out of Iraq -
Another mystery to add - Did someone replace President Bush with a clone - or what -
His actions are alarming of late - especially over the illegals issue. Now this - makes no sense if these stories are true - I find it hard to believe President Bush would help a friend of Soros - considering what just took place with the election -
Um where did you get that, I've checked all the news sources, to include Ukrainian, and haven't seen anything, just Kuchma calling for negotiations.
"owned" by Soros? Meaning what?
You've cited some disturbing things, but can you recommend a source for them?
I was only five but I remember hearing the news and talking about it with my dad.
It's not to hard, do a search on google and it comes up a lot.
no need to worry tank and artillery divisions are being mobilized in dnepropetrovsk and moved toward the capital which has about 15k troops on the ground now. I hope they put Yulia Timoshenko in jail she deserves it calling for a revolution.
I m a bit worried one of the Senators from Yuschenko's camp came out and said they have something very big planned for tomorow. I think the meeting between Yuschenko and Yanukovich is tomorow if they kill Yanukovich the south and east will join Russia.
It's on my short list of really important dates in my lifetime.
I've placed articles siting mass rallies for Yanukovich and denouncements by southern and eastern cities of the opposition. Can we say Civil War?
These must be more Russians who snuck in and dressed up as Ukrainians, while the real Ukrainian army is drunk or watching soccor.
Here's the latest from Fox News.
Ukrainian Leader Calls for Talks to Avert Violence
Tuesday, November 23, 2004
Ukraine PM, Challenger Headed for Runoff
KIEV, Ukraine President Leonid Kuchma (search) called for negotiations among all sides in Ukraine's spiraling political crisis Tuesday, hours after the opposition leader declared himself the winner of a disputed presidential election and took a symbolic oath of office.
A top opposition figure accepted the outgoing president's proposal, the Interfax news agency reported.
"We now have decided to give the possibility to Kuchma to form proposals for talks," Yuliya Tymoshenko said, according to Interfax. It was not immediately clear when the talks might take place.
The startling development in the three-day standoff came as the Bush administration urged the Ukrainian government not to certify results of Sunday's runoff election results that showed Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych (search), backed by Kuchma, defeating the Western-leaning Viktor Yushchenko (search).
"The United States is deeply concerned by extensive and credible indications of fraud committed in the Ukrainian presidential election," White House spokeswoman Claire Buchan said.
But Russian President Vladimir Putin (search), who supported Yanukovych in the campaign, criticized Western assessments of the vote as flawed, stressing that the results were not yet official. On a state visit to Portugal, he called for calm and respect for the law in this former Soviet republic.
Kuchma's statement was read on state television as tens of thousands of Yushchenko's supporters stood their ground in the tense, freezing streets of Kiev for a third straight day. They have vowed to stay until officials nullify the results of an election they say was rigged.
In his statement, Kuchma referred to the demonstrations as "political farce ... [which is] extremely dangerous and may lead to unforeseeable consequences."
Although the harsh description seemed to indicate that Kuchma was disinclined to take the opposition's position seriously, he nonetheless called for all the country's political factions to enter into talks.
"We should peacefully and with consideration discuss the complicated situation and propose to society real steps for getting out of the crisis," the statement said.
"I am convinced today that this is the only route in the search for a balanced position on not allowing Ukraine to split into pieces," he added.
During the day, Yushchenko supporters followed their candidate to a special session of parliament, waving orange flags and chanting "Criminals go away!" As night fell, more than 10,000 marched to the presidential administration building, skirting some heavy trucks that blocked the street and facing off with hundreds of police in full riot gear who were guarding the site.
The demonstrations have been peaceful so far, but fears are running high they could deteriorate into violence either out of the protesters' frustration or attacks by foes.
After dusk, more than a dozen busloads of Yanukovych supporters were seen parked on the fringes of downtown Kiev in the falling snow, and rumors persisted that provocateurs would try to infiltrate the rallies, disguising themselves by wearing orange armbands Yushchenko's campaign color. Nearer to the protests were two busloads of men, one of whom said they were "volunteers to protect the constitution and prevent a coup d'etat."
Yushchenko and his backers accuse authorities in the Central Election Commission of rigging the balloting in favor of the Kremlin-backed Yanukovych. Western observers criticized the election as widely flawed by multiple voting and apparently inflated turnout figures in Yanukovych's stronghold eastern districts.
"Ukraine is on the threshold of a civil conflict," Yushchenko told an emergency session of parliament. "We have two choices: Either the answer will be given by the parliament, or the streets will give an answer."
The parliament session did not muster a quorum many of Yanukovych's backers were absent and concluded without taking action on a measure to nullify the vote. But immediately afterward, Yushchenko went to the podium and took an oath of office, his right hand on the constitution and his left on a Bible. Pro-Yushchenko lawmakers, who had urged him to take the oath, shouted, "Bravo, Mr. President!"
The irregular procedure was not legally binding, parliament speaker Volodymyr Lytvyn said. But its symbolic weight was considerable a declaration that Yushchenko doesn't intend to back off.
In televised comments, Yanukovych called for national unity, saying: "I categorically will not accept the actions of certain politicians who are now calling people to the barricades. This small group of radicals has taken upon itself the goal of splitting Ukraine."
Pro-government political factions late Tuesday called on all sides to negotiate, the Interfax news agency reported, but Yushchenko's backers have dismissed the idea of compromise.
Yuliya Tymoshenko, one of Yushchenko's most fiery allies, urged lawmakers "not to go into any negotiations," saying they should "announce a new government, a new president, a new Ukraine."
A half-dozen large cities already have declared they recognize Yushchenko as president, and Kiev's city council has called on the national parliament to declare the vote invalid.
Tens of thousands of demonstrators were outside the parliament building as the emergency session took place. Several hundred pushed through metal barriers surrounding the building, but backed off at the urging of pro-Yushchenko lawmakers, and much of the crowd later went back to the central Independence Square area, the nerve center of the demonstrations.
Police estimated the total number of demonstrators at 40,000 but independent estimates ranged well above 100,000 and as high as 200,000.
The protest has grown exponentially since its beginning Sunday night as a post-election rally and "parallel vote count." Yushchenko had alleged for weeks that officials were planning to rig the election, and preparations for the protests apparently began well in advance.
The demonstrators have erected hundreds of backpacker-type tents most of the same make in neat rows along Khreshchatik Boulevard, the main downtown thoroughfare, placing them on wooden pallets with thick plastic-foam slabs as insulation against the cold and snow.
Obvious police presence at the demonstration has been extremely low.
Earlier, Yushchenko and his allies released a statement appealing "to the parliaments and nations of the world to bolster the will of the Ukrainian people, to support their aspiration to return to democracy."
The opposition will conduct "a campaign of civil disobedience" and "a nonviolent struggle for recognition of the true results of the election."
The election commission's announcement that Yanukovych was ahead of Yushchenko has galvanized anger among many of Ukraine's 48 million people. Official results, with more than 99.48 percent of precincts counted, showed Yanukovych leading with 49.39 percent to his challenger's 46.71 percent. But several exit polls had found Yushchenko to be the winner.
Bump that. I had the same thought earlier.
Curtain falling on stage - no more need for actors like Soros ...
I have trouble with reports of rumors of Soviets 'dressed as Ukranians" turning back a crowd of millions [!]
I have trouble with "Bob is serving as an election monitor and sends us these startling developments. Apparently the Russians are intervening in the Ukraine with Russian troops dressed as Ukrainians to turn over the results of the election. He has asked that we publicize these developments widely. Have at it FREEPERS."
I have a problem with news conferences by people "at least" dressed as priests etc.
and I have a real problem with "Bob...sends us these startling developments. Apparently the Russians are intervening in the Ukraine with Russian troops dressed as Ukrainians to turn over the results of the election."
I smell Kosovo with a different accent and I highly recommend that this be observed with disinterest while the Russians and their occassional friends sort it out.
If both sides don't want to see the nation destroyed - leaving two leaders with nothing to lead -
Both should call for calm - Even Both should ask for people to go back home - then have both sides watch a total recount of votes -
Someone needs to get the nation calmed down - before many citizens from both camps get killed -
just my thoughts - and I can see this happening here in the U.S. if many more foreigners are allowed to speak as if real Americans - Sad state we are in -
JB6 and ELUMINATE are obvious lap dogs of Yanukovych, Russians, and are old commie propagandist, please disregard their drivel. Too much like Dan Rather.
Ukraine will shake the commie "protectorate" off, they had enough of it already.
So are you saying the goals of Soros - are one and the same as those of President Bush - ? Wow -
Interesting two articles - full of information but not sure how much to believe -
Would explain the illegals, the Bush support of Clinton - allowing the major media to work as they are - but how hard it is to believe that Soros and Bush are on the same page just going about the "goals" differently - Like take what you want - as long as it makes 'money' -
What good is money - when God gets through with them - ?
A lot of American citizens will either end up dead or in jail if this is true - in the end that is -
Well, these could be the players.
George Soros is attacked with mayonnaise before opening a forum on election rights protection. Hotel Rus, Kyiv, March 31
Viktor Yushchenko a Soros man.
A Ukrainian opposition weekly Svoboda has doubted the sincerity of the coming visit to Ukraine by former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger at the invitation of magnate Viktor Pinchuk, the Ukrainian president's son-in-law.
It said the visit comes on the eve of the election and in the wake of a recent visit by US philanthropist and financier George Soros.
There is ethnic solidarity between the three mentioned persons of Jewish origin. Soros and Kissinger have been bought for dirty money "obtained" by Pinchuk in Ukraine thanks to his closeness to Kuchma.
What a Wild $ Crazy election!!!
Anyway, I'll be watching the Ukraninian Girls!
Please read the two article from link on post #75 -
Wow - really something - so much is put out these days -
No wonder all the nations of the world are in such a mess
Got a good idea there - much better than trying to figure out the power plays of the big boys of the world -
They certainly have changed also - can remember the pictures from long ago -
Have fun girl watching - with beer and/or popcorn -
You can always count on the Soviets (Putin's Russia) to act like Soviets (be sure to read original post on this thread):
Ping this thread to as many as you can think of--TTS
Have you seen this yet?
I wonder what the Putin Parade is going to say about this one--TTS
Hey - Tap - you are late on this -
Need to read a couple of articles at post #75 - interesting at the very least - puts a whole new light on things -
With all the information from both sides coming out - hard to know what is going on - and which side is correct - I'd hate to think we have another Yugo. going on -
If you hear anything new, please keep us updated.
It's just a reminder--countries have interests, not allies. Anyone who forgets that will be quickly reminded that they are wrong.
Funny how Yanukovitch has been as visible as Hitler in his bunker since the elections on Sunday. Meanwhile, Kuchma cannot even trust his own military, he has to be protected by specially flown in Russian Spetznaz forces.
I find it amazing that so many commies are crawling out of the woodwork on Free Republic today to support a mobster like Yanukovitch. Keep in mind, this guy has been convicted twice of very serious crimes, including rape of an 16 year old girl, and has had two other convictions suppressed.
I agree. Sounds like the Pro-Russian guy won the election and the Soros-backed liberal loser is whinning about 'exit polls'. I'm suprised that many Freepers on this thread are backing the Ukrainian DU/Soros loser.
One Freeper is even basing his support on what some liberal democrat "American" election observer has to say about it.
I will ping you to a thread where ANYBODY who is thinking like us is accused of being a RUSSIAN PLANT or spy or a dupe.