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Russia (News/Activism)

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  • Germans Back Tougher Stance Toward Russia Over Ukraine -- Poll

    08/21/2014 5:00:43 PM PDT · by Greetings_Puny_Humans · 4 replies
    Wallstreet Journal ^ | 8/21/2014 | Harriet Torry
    BERLIN—German voters are swinging behind their government's tougher line against Moscow after long being willing to give Russia the benefit of the doubt in its dispute with Ukraine. An opinion poll published Friday shows Germans widely support the European Union's latest sanctions against Russia and an overwhelming majority view the Kremlin's actions in eastern Ukraine with an increasingly critical eye, with 82% of Germans surveyed saying Russia can't be trusted.
  • IFV From Russian Airborne Division Captured In Ukraine

    08/21/2014 4:22:52 PM PDT · by Greetings_Puny_Humans · 3 replies
    The Interpreter Magazine ^ | 8/21/2014 | The Interpreter Magazine
    IFV From Russian Airborne Division Captured In Ukraine 11:53 (GMT) Ukrainian journalist Roman Bochkala reports that a BMD-2 infantry fighting vehicle (IFV) has been captured in the Lugutino district, to the south of Lugansk and near to Lugansk Airport. The vehicles bort number (3 digit identification code on the side of the vehicle) and documents indicate that it is from the Russian airborne forces. The following text and photos are taken from Bochkala's Facebook page, (translation by The Interpreter): [See link for more photographs- It is a live thread, so you will need to scroll down to find them.] There...
  • Tourism tanks in Crimea under the Russian flag

    08/21/2014 12:13:37 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 6 replies
    AFP ^ | August 8, 2014
    Restaurant owner Galina Anchukova looks out across the seaside promenade in sunny Feodosia, with its straggle of strolling tourists, and sees a wasted financial opportunity. "The season is ruined, there is nobody here," she said. The first summer season in Crimea under the Russian flag has been a disappointment, local business owners complain, blaming fighting in eastern Ukraine for their troubles. The Crimean peninsula was once the pearl of Soviet vacation spots, with hotels and spas dotting towns along the Black Sea coast. Russia annexed the majority Russian-speaking region from Ukraine in March after a pro-Western government took power in...
  • Kiev U-turn over claim that Russian tanks, artillery and 1,200 fighters deployed in E. Ukraine

    08/21/2014 11:58:28 AM PDT · by tcrlaf · 28 replies
    Daily Mail ^ | 8-20-2014 | Will Stewart, Damien Gail
    -Ukrainian official claimed troops moved in just as the city was poised to fall -But they have since been forced to deny the allegation after strong rebuttal -If true it would have been tantamount to an invasion of Ukraine by Russia -Putin set to meet Ukrainian president Poroshenko in Belarus on Monday Muddled security officials in Ukraine were last night forced to deny a huge Russian military convoy had been deployed in the eastern rebel-run city of Lugansk. The strong rebuttal suggested an earlier claim about an invasion by Vladimir Putin's troops amounted to a crude propaganda move by the...
  • We need Russian influence: Ukrainian minister

    08/21/2014 4:40:20 AM PDT · by wetphoenix · 3 replies
    CNBC ^ | Catherine Boyle
    The Ukrainian government needs "Russian influence" to deal with the problems within its borders, one of its most senior members said ahead of a key summit between the two sparring countries. "(It is) only with Russian influence we can sort the problem out," Pavlo Klimkin, foreign minister of Ukraine, told CNBC ahead of the talks in Minsk on Tuesday, which will see Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Ukrainian counterpart Petro Poroshenko meet at a summit of leaders in the region. The conflict in Ukraine shows little signs of abating. On Thursday, dozens of people died as fighting in Donetsk,...
  • Merkel sets limits to NATO solidarity with Baltic states

    08/21/2014 3:16:54 AM PDT · by Olog-hai · 3 replies
    EU Observer ^ | 19.08.14 @ 09:21 | Andrew Rettman
    German chancellor Angela Merkel has said NATO will defend Baltic states if need be, but will not build permanent military bases in the region. She spoke on Monday (18 August) on a visit to Riga in which she also laid a wreath at the Freedom Monument, a memorial to the Latvian War of Independence against Russia in 1918. “I want to stress that … Article V of the NATO contract—the duty to provide mutual support—is not something which just exists on paper, but is also something which must be filled with life”, she told press after meeting Latvian prime minister...
  • Russia Shuts Moscow McDonald's Restaurants

    08/20/2014 10:09:48 AM PDT · by McGruff · 25 replies
    Sky News ^ | 8/20/2014
    Russia's food safety watchdog has suspended operations at four McDonald's restaurants in Moscow over alleged sanitary law breaches.
  • Shekhovtsov: Pro-Russian network behind the anti-Ukrainian defamation campaign

    08/21/2014 12:01:36 AM PDT · by Greetings_Puny_Humans · 2 replies
    Anton Shekhovtsov ^ | 3 Feb 2014 | Anton Shekhovtsov
    Pro-Russian network behind the anti-Ukrainian defamation campaign snip Kovalenko's task was simple: by giving support to Yushchenko under the Nazi-like flags, he was expected to discredit the democratic candidate in the eyes of Western observers. Luckily for Yushchenko, however, the Western media largely did not buy into that frame-up and ignored it. But some Western organisations did not. One of those was the eccentric - and apparently non-existent today - British Helsinki Human Rights Group (BHHRG) not affiliated, despite the name, to the Helsinki Committee for Human Rights. The BHHRG was notorious for claiming that elections in authoritarian Belarus met...
  • The Only American Fighting For Ukraine Dies in Battle

    08/20/2014 4:51:48 PM PDT · by lodi90 · 10 replies
    Vice News ^ | 8/20/2014 | Simon Ostrovsky
    Mark Gregory Paslawsky, the sole American fighting on the Ukrainian side of the war in the east of the country, died from injuries sustained in battle in the town of Ilovaysk on Tuesday. Known by the codename "Franko," the 55-year-old investment banker was a Manhattan native, and had a slight limp and a pronounced New York accent, making him seem an unlikely candidate for a soldier in an eastern European war that has already claimed more than 2,000 lives. VICE News interviewed Paslawsky in early August in the Luhansk region where he had been deployed with the volunteer Donbas Battalion....
  • Ukrainian Govt Troops Take Over Much of Luhansk

    08/20/2014 2:06:39 PM PDT · by Berlin_Freeper · 7 replies
    Associated Press ^ | Aug 20, 2014 | NATALIYA VASILYEVA and PETER LEONARD
    After days of street battles and weeks of shelling, Ukrainian troops made a significant push Wednesday into rebel-held territory, claiming control over a large part of the separatist stronghold of Luhansk and nearly encircling Donetsk, the largest rebel-held city.
  • The Truth About the MiG-29 (How U.S. intelligence services solved the mystery of a cold war killer)

    08/20/2014 12:46:38 PM PDT · by sukhoi-30mki · 18 replies
    Air & Space Magazine ^ | SEPTEMBER 2014 | John Sotham
    The MiG-29 Fulcrum outside the National Air and Space Intelligence Center at Ohio’s Wright-Patterson Air Force Base has a hornet’s nest growing in its nose. Its tires, lifted off the ground by stands, are split and shredded. Bird droppings drool off its radome. The aircraft gives the impression of a war prize displayed like a head on a stake. In a way, it is a war prize, taken in the winning of the cold war. It’s one of 17 MiG-29s the U.S. government purchased from the former Soviet state of Moldova in 1997, a deal that kept the jets from...
  • Chaos In Kerch: Russia Struggles To Ferry Tourists To Crimea

    08/20/2014 12:10:48 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 14 replies
    rferl.org ^ | August 20, 2014
    Since annexing Crimea from Ukraine in March, the Kremlin has said it is Russians' patriotic duty to spend their summer holidays at the peninsula's resorts. But Russian tourists taking up the call have found that actually getting to Crimea for their Black Sea vacations is no easy task. With the tourist season hitting its peak, thousands of Crimea-bound vehicles have been forced to wait in line for as long as 40 hours for the ferry crossing the Kerch Strait, the only point -- other than by air -- where Russians can cross into Crimea. According to Russia's transport authorities, at...
  • Rand Paul’s Russian Connection

    08/20/2014 11:49:23 AM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe
    freebeacon.com ^ | August 20, 2014 | Alana Goodman
    Sen. Rand Paul (R., Ky.) has named as one of his key foreign policy advisers a controversial Russia policy expert with deep ties to the Kremlin. Dimitri Simes, the president of the Center for the National Interest, and Ambassador Richard Burt, a member of the Center’s board of directors, are recent additions to Paul’s foreign policy advisory team, the senator told National Journal earlier this year. For years, Simes and the center have provided a sympathetic platform for the Russian government in the heart of the D.C. policy establishment. Its ties to Moscow extend throughout the organization. The advisory council...
  • ICRC team enters eastern Ukraine to smooth way for Russian convoy

    08/20/2014 10:44:23 AM PDT · by tcrlaf · 9 replies
    Reuters ^ | 8-20-2014 | Stephanie Nebehay
    Red Cross officials entered eastern Ukraine on Wednesday to smooth the planned delivery of relief supplies aboard a Russian aid convoy, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said. The convoy has been stuck at the Russia-Ukraine border for nearly a week due to Ukrainian concerns it could serve as a Trojan horse to infiltrate military supplies to pro-Russian separatists in the area. Moscow says the mission is purely humanitarian in support of civilians trapped by the conflict. "An advance ICRC team crossed into eastern Ukraine this morning, having received security guarantees from groups controlling the territory for this...
  • 4 Moscow Protesters Trolled Putin Over Ukraine In One Of The Most Powerful Ways Possible

    08/20/2014 9:25:19 AM PDT · by elhombrelibre · 5 replies
    Business Insider ^ | 20 Aug 14 | Unknown
    Four people who climbed a Moscow skyscraper on Wednesday and attached a Ukrainian flag to its spire have been charged with vandalism by Russian police and may face three years in jail. The protesters also managed to paint half a massive yellow star at the top of the spire with blue paint, so it resembled the yellow-and-blue national colors of Ukraine. After the four were arrested, maintenance crews quickly removed the flag from the Stalin-era building, which towers over the Moscow River and houses businesses and apartments, and were starting to remove the blue paint.
  • Hackers are after more than just personal info

    08/20/2014 9:08:19 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 4 replies
    Townhall.com ^ | August 20, 2014 | Rachel Marsden
    A cyberattack on Community Health Systems Inc., a private hospital network, in April and June resulted in the theft of non-medical data of 4.5 million Americans, including names, addresses, birth dates, phone numbers and Social Security numbers, according to a new Securities and Exchange Commission filing. The attacks were attributed to Chinese hackers. There's justification for alarm, but not for the reasons you might think. The good news is that none of this information allegedly stolen by the Chinese is anything that hasn't long been publicly available through information broker websites, accessible by anyone on the planet for a modest...
  • Carlsberg lowers profit outlook on fall in Russian sales

    08/20/2014 2:43:09 AM PDT · by wetphoenix · 3 replies
    Copenhagen (AFP) - Danish brewer Carlsberg cut its annual profit guidance on Wednesday and said economic uncertainty in Russia, its biggest market, could prompt it to close some breweries. Clouds over the outlook in some parts of eastern Europe had cut consumption of beer, the company said. "Due to the recent macro events the consumer sentiment and the outlook for some of the economies in eastern Europe are becoming increasingly challenging and uncertain," the company said in its quarterly earnings statement. "Consequently, we believe that the beer category will deteriorate further in the second half of the year," it added....
  • Plenty of Room at the Top of Ukraine’s Fading Rebellion

    08/20/2014 12:07:31 AM PDT · by Berlin_Freeper · 8 replies
    nytimes ^ | AUG. 19, 2014 | Andrew E. Kramer
    DONETSK, Ukraine — To outward appearances, Fyodor D. Berezin is the picture of a senior military commander. He wears camouflage, has bodyguards and confidently gives orders as the newly named deputy defense minister of the separatist Donetsk People’s Republic. Yet, just four months ago he was an obscure author of 18 science fiction novels, one play and a dozen or so short stories. In an interview, Mr. Berezin said he was as surprised as anybody by his rapid promotion through the rebel ranks. “Reality became scarier than science fiction,” he said in an interview over iced tea at the Havana...
  • Russia Reignites Its Rocket Industry with New Angara Booster

    08/19/2014 8:39:24 PM PDT · by wetphoenix · 35 replies
    Space ^ | Leonard David
    Russia's recent maiden launch of its new Angara rocket is a harbinger of bigger boosters to come. The successful test flight also marked the country's first new launch vehicle to be built from scratch since the fall of the Soviet Union. The July 9 suborbital flight of the light-lift Angara 1.2ML rocket lifted off from Russia's Plesetsk Cosmodrome in the country's northern Arkhangelsk region. (The "ML" stands for "maiden launch.") The test flight, which lasted roughly 21 minutes and was not intended to reach orbit, launched the Angara rocket over Russian territory on a ballistic trajectory. A "mass/dimensional payload simulator"...
  • Fleeing Civilians ‘Burned Alive’ in Ukraine as Rebel Fighters Are Set to Cross the Border

    08/19/2014 3:15:10 PM PDT · by free_life · 8 replies
    Vice News ^ | August 18, 2014 | Harriet Salem
    Dozens of civilians, including women and children, were reportedly killed today after rebels hit vehicles carrying people trying to flee the ongoing fighting in the eastern Ukraine. According to military spokesperson Anatoly Proshin a "powerful artillery strike" hit a convoy, which was carrying white flags and under the escort of the Ukrainian army. "People were burned alive inside — they didn't have time to get out," he told Ukrainian news channel 112.ua. Andriy Lysenko, spokesperson for Ukraine's National Security and Defense Council, called the act a "bloody crime" and the work of "bandits" using weaponry given to them by the...
  • Russian patriarch: Ukrainian Catholics want to ‘eradicate Orthodoxy’

    08/19/2014 1:06:44 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 11 replies
    catholicculture.org ^ | August 19, 2014
    The head of the Russian Orthodox Church has again alleged that the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church has undertaken a campaign of hatred against Orthodoxy-- prompting a sharp official response from the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church. The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church is the largest of the Eastern Catholic churches, which are in full communion with the Holy See. “As far back as last autumn when the present political crisis in Ukraine just began, representatives of the Greek Catholic Church and schismatic communities, who appeared in the Kiev Maidan, openly preached hatred towards the Orthodox Church, calling to seize Orthodox shrines and...
  • Advancing Ukraine troops take fight to heart of pro-Moscow rebellion

    08/19/2014 9:42:02 AM PDT · by 1rudeboy · 27 replies
    Reuters Canada ^ | Aug. 19, 2014 | Maria Tsvetkova and Noah Barkin
    DONETSK Ukraine/BERLIN (Reuters) - A gun battle broke out in the center of the rebel-held Ukrainian city of Donetsk and residents ran for cover from artillery fire on Tuesday, taking a government military offensive into the heart of the retreating pro-Moscow separatist rebellion. Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Ukrainian counterpart will meet next week for the first time in months to try to end their confrontation over the separatist rebellion in eastern Ukraine, their offices said. In a prelude to the talks between Putin and Ukraine's Petro Poroshenko, German Chancellor Angela Merkel is to visit the Ukrainian capital Kiev...
  • Russian import ban fuels food price rises

    08/19/2014 8:41:48 AM PDT · by lodi90 · 7 replies
    BBC News ^ | 8/19/2014 | BBC News
    Food prices are rising in parts of Russia and experts say the state embargo on imports of Western food appears to be making things worse. Since the ban was imposed on 7 August imported pork used in processed meat in Moscow has gone up by 6%, Russian business daily Kommersant reports. In St Petersburg food prices have risen 10%. That inflation occurred even before the impact of sanctions.
  • Putin Is Replaceable

    08/19/2014 3:35:04 AM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 1 replies
    The Moscow Times ^ | August 18, 2014 | Maria Snegovaya
    Will Russia plunge into chaos and darkness after President Vladimir Putin leaves? While it's understandable that propaganda-brainwashed Russians might truly think so, it comes as a surprise when U.S. analysts repeat the same idea. "Knowing the weakness of the liberal opposition and the strength of Putin's security apparatus, it's hard not to fear that his replacement will make us long for the days of his thuggishly predictable unpredictability," warns Julia Ioffe on The New Republic. "If the U.S. gets rid of Putin they will have no ability to control what happens next," threatens Mark Adomanis on Forbes. Such pessimistic estimates,...
  • Hungary eyes Russia's 'illiberal' model

    08/18/2014 8:53:51 PM PDT · by wetphoenix · 7 replies
    Aljazeera ^ | 18 Aug 2014 12:41 | Kristina Jovanovski
    Hungary has increasingly courted and won favour with Russia, while rejecting the core values of the European Union. Budapest, Hungary - As the West holds its breath waiting to see if Russia will intervene in Ukraine, there is one country looking to Moscow for inspiration: Hungary. In a speech in late July, Prime Minister Viktor Orban said he wanted to turn Hungary into an "illiberal state" and used Russia as a model example. "We want to build a workfare society ... which is willing to bear the odium to declare that it is not liberal in character," said Orban, adding...
  • The Russian Media Thinks a Race War Is Brewing in America

    08/18/2014 12:50:10 PM PDT · by 2ndDivisionVet · 89 replies
    The New Republic ^ | August 15, 2014 | Josh Kovensky
    he protests in Ferguson, Missouri, over the police killing of 18-year-old Michael Brown are eliciting predictable glee from Russian media outlets, some of which are making it seem as if a race war is about to break out in America. An RT article, “Protests Against Police Tyranny have Spread Across the Main Cities of the USA," suggested that the nation is on the brink of chaos as the "rage of Americans ... spreads across the entire country." Sputink i Pogrom, a nationalist newsmagazine, tweeted out, "What do you think? Should Russia grant Obama asylum in Rostov after the Ferguson Maidanites...
  • Betrayal, desertion could mean execution, Ukraine rebel leaders warn fighters

    08/18/2014 12:55:56 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 5 replies
    reuters.com ^ | August 18, 2014 | Thomas Grove
    Under growing pressure from a government offensive, the rebel leadership in Ukraine's battle-torn east warned its fighters on Monday that desertion and betrayal could be met by execution. The warning appeared to signal a growing concern by the leadership of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic (DNR) over a breakdown of discipline in the fighting ranks as Kiev's military stepped up its offensive. Apart from being worried about desertions, which the Kiev military says are now telling on rebel ranks, the separatists are also worried about widespread lawlessness. "It is no secret that we have service personnel who carry out crimes....
  • Russian oil prices fall below $100/barrel, straining budget

    08/18/2014 12:25:58 PM PDT · by Tailgunner Joe · 9 replies
    reuters.com ^ | August 18, 2014
    Russian Urals crude weakened for an eight straight trading day on Monday due to weak European refining demand, falling well below $100 a barrel for the first time in a year in a move to increase the pain for Russian state finances amid Western sanctions. Russia has balanced its budget at $114 a barrel this year as President Vladimir Putin is ramping up social military spending amid a conflict in Ukraine, which sent relations between Moscow and the West to their worst since the end of the Cold War. Sanctions are expected to slow new Russian oil projects, compounding a...
  • RUSSIAN FEDERATION: Sanctions Hurt Putin's Hold on Power

    Many critics argue that the sanctions imposed on Russia for its actions in Ukraine are ineffective because they are too limited in scale and scope. Moreover, sanctions are seen as allowing President Vladimir Putin to blame the West for Russia’s internal problems. Indeed, some of Putin’s supporters within Russia welcome the sanctions as a means to compel Russian autarky — and thus strategic independence from the West. These arguments are wrong. Though the sanctions are not backed by China, they are already having a powerful effect, and the expectation that they will be tightened further is a huge concern for...
  • Ukraine factories equip Russian military despite support for rebels

    08/18/2014 6:26:10 AM PDT · by McGruff · 3 replies
    the washington Post ^ | August 15, 2014 | Michael Birnbaum
    Deep into a conflict that has sundered decades-old ties between Ukraine and Russia, Ukraine is still selling military gear over the border to its neighbor, Ukrainian defense industry officials say. Kiev’s pleas for an end to trade ties have run into strong resistance from workers at companies like Motor Sich, here in Ukraine’s industrial heartland, where 27,000 employees build engines tailor-made for Russian military helicopters and planes. Most senior executives here grew up as part of the same Soviet military-industrial club as their Russian peers. “We have our own party, the party of Motor Sich,’’ company spokesman Anatoliy Malysh said.
  • RUSSIA: Opposition Held the March of Millions in Moscow. [PHOTOS]

    The march and meeting of the Opposition's March of Millions in the Russian capital yesterday. http://storage1.censor.net.ua/images/3/7/2/3/37234e2fc5bc2f746e97830922c1fa2b/640x427.jpg Well-known Russian blogger Drugoi posts pictures on his Facebook page
  • Russia may ban import of cars if West applies new sanctions - paper

    08/18/2014 12:23:40 AM PDT · by wetphoenix · 5 replies
    MOSCOW, Aug 18 (Reuters) - Russia may tighten retaliatory sanctions against Western nations to include a ban on imports of cars, among other things, if the United States and the European Union impose additional sanctions on Moscow, Vedomosti daily newspaper said on Monday. Following Russia's stand off over Ukraine, Western nations imposed sanctions on Moscow including on its financial and energy sectors, and put dozens of Russians close to President Vladimir Putin on a sanctions list. Imported vehicles accounted for 27 percent of sales of passenger cars in the first half of 2014, for trucks imports accounted for 46 percent,...
  • In Another Rebel Setback, Ukraine Says Army Controls Center of Luhansk

    08/17/2014 4:07:01 PM PDT · by Greetings_Puny_Humans · 10 replies
    NYTIMES ^ | 08/17/2014 | ANDREW E. KRAMER
    <p>"The army has tightened its siege on Donetsk in recent weeks, and inside, a breakdown in discipline among the hard-pressed rebel fighters had locals on edge. Residents said rebel fighters had taken to carousing drunkenly at night and wearing civilian clothes at checkpoints, a change of clothes that would allow them, at a moment’s notice, to throw down their weapons and blend in with the population.</p>
  • Rick Perry And The Democrats’ Pattern Of “Lawfare” Against Rising Republicans

    08/17/2014 2:10:27 PM PDT · by Hojczyk · 22 replies
    Powerline ^ | April 16, 2013 | PAUL MIRENGOFF
    John and Scott have commented on the indictment of Gov. Rick Perry. As they note, it fits a pattern of politically motivated indictments of prominent Texas Republicans. The Perry indictment also fits a pattern of harassment via the legal process of prominent Republican governors: Sarah Palin, Scott Walker, Chris Christie, and now Perry. What do these four have in common? Why, they all are (or were) potentially viable candidates for the national office. Invocation of the legal process against Christie may well be warranted. (So too with Bob McDonnell, whom I didn’t include in my list because, although once vaguely...
  • NYTimes Reporter: Obama ‘Greatest Enemy To Press Freedom In A Generation’

    08/17/2014 11:10:47 AM PDT · by lbryce · 40 replies
    Daily Caller ^ | August 17, 2014 | Jamie Weinstein
    President Barack Obama is no friend of press freedom, says a New York Times reporter who may be sent to jail for refusing to reveal a source. “A lot of people still think this is some kind of game or signal or spin,” reporter James Risen told his own paper in a profile about his plight published Saturday. “They don’t want to believe that Obama wants to crack down on the press and whistle-blowers. But he does. He’s the greatest enemy to press freedom in a generation.” Risen’s troubles stem from the 2006 publication of his book “State of War,”...
  • UKRAINE: "Will soon find out whether Putin is ready for a new world war," Tymchuk

    Focal correspondent met with Dmitry Tymchuk in Mariinsky Park. Shortly after the start of the conversation to our reporter a passing young guy: walked over, shook hands and warmly thanked for his work. During the Russian aggression in Ukraine Tymchuk has become the most quoted military expert in the country. Coordinator of the "Information resistance" guardedly optimistic, after the removal of certain separatist groups from the Russian supplies, their defeat may be a matter of a few days. Of course, if Vladimir Putin decides on a direct invasion, the conflict will be very different in magnitude, but in the meantime,...
  • UKRAINE: "Interview: I Was A Separatist Fighter In Ukraine" [VIDEO]

    08/17/2014 7:05:36 AM PDT · by UMCRevMom@aol.com · 19 replies
    Radio Free Europe/ Radio Liberty ^ | Sunday, August 17, 2014
    Sunday, August 17, 2014 Artur Gasparyan, a 24-year-old native of Spitak, Armenia, was recruited in Moscow in May to fight in eastern Ukraine. Now back in the Russian capital, he spoke with Mumin Shakirov of RFE/RL's Russian Service (see original in Russian here) in detail about his experiences. RFE/RL: You expressed interest in going to Ukraine on a forum on Vkontakte after you read about the fire in the Odesa Trade Union Building in which 42 pro-Moscow separatists died. What happened next? Artur Gasparyan: About 10 guys showed up at a meeting somewhere near VDNKh [the All-Russian Exhibition Center in...
  • Ukraine Says Troops Entered Rebel-Held City

    08/17/2014 7:07:44 AM PDT · by elhombrelibre · 20 replies
    AP/ABC NEWS ^ | 17 Aug 14 | Peter Leonard
    Army troops have penetrated deep inside a rebel-controlled city in eastern Ukraine in what could prove a breakthrough development in the four-month-long conflict, the Ukrainian government said Sunday. However, the military acknowledged that one of its fighter planes was shot down by the separatists, who have been bullish about their ability to continue the battle and have bragged about receiving support from Russia. Ukraine's national security council said government forces captured a district police station in Luhansk on Saturday after bitter clashes in the Velika Vergunka neighborhood.
  • Ukrainians Lviv station: greeted soldiers who came from the front with ovation. awesome VIDEO

    08/17/2014 4:52:57 AM PDT · by UMCRevMom@aol.com · 4 replies
    Ukrainians in Lviv station ovation greeted the soldiers who came from the front. awesome VIDEO This is not an advertisement, is met by border guards in Lviv area of ATO [Anti Terrorist Operation] A;so fond at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=da54oztCDM0#t=12
  • Pro-Russian Forces Are Starting To Unravel In Ukraine

    08/16/2014 11:30:52 PM PDT · by elhombrelibre · 32 replies
    Agence France Presse ^ | 15 Aug 14 | Anna Malpas and Anais Llobet
    Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine have sustained dramatic setbacks after top military chiefs quit and Kiev's forces pummeled their strongholds, cutting off a key rebel-held city from the Russian border. Kiev's advance came as the Russian "humanitarian" convoy parked up close to the frontier, with doubts still swirling over what the trucks contained and whether they would be allowed to cross. According to reports in two British newspapers, a smaller group of Russian vehicles, including armored cars, did cross the border into Ukraine late Thursday. The Daily Telegraph "witnessed a column of vehicles including both armoured personal carriers and soft-skinned...
  • Russia and Iran attack ISIS Jihadists

    08/16/2014 9:09:21 PM PDT · by Dave346 · 36 replies
    CNN ^ | August 11, 2014 | Dr. Michael Evans
    President Barack Obama has announced that the United States launched air strikes on the terrorist organization ISIS to assist Kurdistan. It is likely you have not seen a headline that says, “US Strikes help Kurds retake towns.” That is because it never happened. The air support came from Russian and Iranian planes. The only problem is that’s not entirely true. My contacts in Kurdistan are now saying that many of these attacks are being launched by the Iraqi air force. The only problem is that the US government has not sold airplanes to Iraq, but Russia has armed them with...
  • Jason Carter’s delicate dance on his grandfather’s Hamas position

    08/11/2014 7:43:11 AM PDT · by Hotlanta Mike · 12 replies
    AJC.com ^ | Monday, August 11th, 2014 | Greg Bluestein
    You could almost hear the groans from Democrat Jason Carter’s camp last week when his grandfather, former President Jimmy Carter, co-authored an op-ed arguing that Hamas should be recognized as a legitimate political actor. Gov. Nathan Deal has since tried to tie his November opponent to his grandpa’s views of Hamas, the militant faction which the U.S. considers a terrorist group. Others, including some Democratic supporters, have questioned why Carter didn’t come out strongly against his grandfather’s position. Carter’s strategists don’t want the campaign to answer for his grandfather every time he says something controversial. They also recognize Deal and...
  • iran Sanction Revised?

    08/16/2014 2:11:32 PM PDT · by mgist · 11 replies
    US Treasury ^ | 7-19-2016 | Valerie Jarret?
    On July 19, 2014, the P5+1 (the United States, United Kingdom, Germany, France, Russia, and China, coordinated by EU High Representative Catherine Ashton) and Iran affirmed that they will continue to implement the commitments described in the Joint Plan of Action (JPOA) and the U.S. government has extended through November 24, 2014, the sanctions relief provided for in the JPOA. This extended relief comes into effect on July 21, 2014. The following documents are key components of the implementation of the JPOA as extended. Guidance Relating to the Provision Of Certain Temporary Sanctions Relief in Order to Implement the Joint...
  • State Dept's Jen Psaki Cries Sexism: Russians "Targeted" Me Because Of My Outfits (video)

    06/13/2014 6:32:53 AM PDT · by i88schwartz · 53 replies
    RealClearPolitics ^ | June 12, 2014 | RealClearPolitics
    State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki says she has become a Twitter meme in Russian circles because she is a woman, claiming they "have a bit of a tendency to focus on the outfits I’m wearing and the colors I’m wearing." Psaki accused Russian outlets like Russia Today of sexism and spreading false rumors that she was fired from the State Department because she has not been at the podium lately. (Psaki's deputy Marie Harf conducted the State Department daily press briefing all last week.) Russia Today responded, saying the shots fired at Psaki on Twitter from Russians are for the...
  • Will Erdogan's Presidency End NATO As We Know It?

    08/11/2014 5:17:33 PM PDT · by jazusamo · 34 replies
    Investors.com ^ | August 11, 2014 | IBD Editorial
    Allies: With all the disconcerting things going on in the Mideast, you could be forgiven for missing an event critically important to America's long-term interests: Recep Erdogan's election as president of Turkey. Erdogan's 52% victory over the weekend in a stage-managed election, making him the nation's first directly elected president, heralds a new era of conflict in the Mideast and perhaps the end of NATO as we know it. Turkey has for decades been a key ally to the U.S. and NATO in the Mideast, an anchor in the Cold War against the USSR and friendly toward Israel as the...
  • This time, Iraq should be broken up

    08/12/2014 6:15:50 PM PDT · by SeekAndFind · 35 replies
    Telegraph ^ | 08/12/2014 | Andrew Lilico
    We must go back into Iraq. Then when we leave, we must not leave an Iraq. In the immediate aftermath of the 2003 invasion, there were two strategic errors. The first was when the Americans took down the US flag in Baghdad. In some American stores the sign says: "If you break it, you own it." We broke Iraq, but then we refused to own it – we refused to raise our flag and say: "It's our responsibility now if your power doesn't work or someone tries to rob you." The second great error is the one that's really coming...
  • Ukraine separatist leader says rebels getting tanks and reinforcements

    08/16/2014 1:32:24 PM PDT · by elhombrelibre · 11 replies
    Reuters ^ | 16 Aug 14 | Thomas Grove
    Reuters) - Ukrainian rebels are receiving new armoured vehicles and fighters trained in Russia, with which they plan to launch a major counter-offensive against government forces, a separatist leader said in a video released on Saturday. The four-month conflict in eastern Ukraine has reached a critical phase, with Kiev and Western governments watching nervously to see if Russia will intervene in support of the increasingly besieged rebels - an intention Moscow denies. Alexander Zakharchenko, prime minister of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, said the rebels were in the process of receiving some 150 armoured vehicles, including 30 tanks, and 1,200...
  • Obama Will Visit Baltics To Deter Another Putin Invasion

    08/16/2014 11:54:20 AM PDT · by afraidfortherepublic · 39 replies
    The Daily Caller ^ | 8-16-14 | Neal Munro
    The White House announced Friday that President Barack Obama will jet out to the small Eastern European country of Estonia in early September, before attending a NATO meeting in Wales. The trip is likely intended to deter Russian President Vladimir Putin from grabbing parts of Estonia and its two small neighbors, all of whom contain populations of ethnic Russians. All three countries are member of NATO, and are too small to block a determined Russian invasion. “In light of recent developments in Ukraine, the United States has taken steps to reassure allies in Central and Eastern Europe, and this trip...
  • Video: Hillary: When I’m ‘President Again’

    11/08/2007 8:29:18 AM PST · by rwa265 · 65 replies · 247+ views
    CNN "Situation Room" ^ | 11/7/7 | ianschwartz
    Slip of the tongue? Yesterday on CNN’s “The Situation Room” Hillary Clinton spoke about what she would do about licensing illegal immigrants when she is president again. Watch:
  • U.N. Security Council blacklists ISIS [EU Vote Unanimous For Arming Kurds]

    08/15/2014 12:35:44 PM PDT · by GonzoII · 7 replies
    Al Arabiya (With AFP and Reuters) ^ | Friday, 15 August 2014 | Staff writer, Al Arabiya News
    The United Nations Security Council took aim at Islamist militants in Iraq and Syria on Friday, blacklisting six people including the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) spokesman and threatening sanctions against those who finance, recruit or supply weapons to the insurgents. The 15-member council unanimously adopted a resolution that aims to weaken ISIS and al Qaeda's Syrian wing Nusra Front, Reuters reported. ISIS has long been blacklisted by the Security Council, while Nusra Front was added earlier this year. Both groups are designated under the U.N. al Qaeda sanctions regime. EU ministers agreed Friday to back the arming...