Okay. We should stop this before the thread becomes about US party politics and not the Ukraine conflict.
How do you start a joke about Vladimir Putin?
With looking over your shoulder.
And avoiding all food or drink...and being on the lookout for umbrella tips.
and on the first floor with no windows in the room.
It's not surprising as I suppose the Russians have been (small "r") republicans since 1917. 😉
But Russia was only democratic (small "d") for a short while. 😥
I think we'll look back on the Yeltsin years as the only brief democratic highlight in Russian history and even that era saw the rise of the oligarchs and their unaccountable power and wealth.
Most Russians don't have good memories from the 90's and that's a shame. Who on earth thought of "capitalism in 500 days"? I suspect many thinks of chaos when they remember that decade, but that was because of the economy and not democracy.
This video tries to analyze how the war in Ukraine is going (April 8.) in the military sense. Of course I can't say if the video is correct, but it looks convinsing to me.
"Who is winning?" - Mythbusting the Ukraine-Russia war - YouTube
It looks like the Swedish PM wants the country to join NATO. So does the government in Finland. Germany finally wants to meet the 2% military spending goal and many other NATO members are also beefing up their defence. Great job weakening NATO, Putin! 😁
From the US, I must say that it's incredibly satisfying seeing the perceived solidarity between the EU countries.
It's the exact oposite of what Putin expected to happen. Putin didn't expect this either:
Who's the best electrician in Russia?
Putin. In a few weeks he's managed to isolate Russia completely!
Is this Ukrainian stamp comderating the sinking of the Russian war ship Moskva the first ever use of a one-fingered salute on an official stamp? 😁
Someone I know is reporting from Kiev for a major Norwegian newspaper. He's a brother of one of my best friends who didn't know until I asked him today. The journalist is also the son of my parent's former boss and a friend of theirs. He is reporting on horrible war crimes. I'm glad these things are being reported, and I hope he stays safe.
Russian FSB have arrested some Ukrainians for the attempted assassination of TV host (and major Putin propagandist) Vladimir Solovyov. Of course the apartement of the assassins was full of weapons, explosives, drugs and nazi paraphermalia. But why wasn't the door locked when the FSB came knocking in full SWAT gear, and why did an "assassin" just opened the door without even checking the peephole?
It gets stranger, In this photo of suspicious stuff we see three copies of the video game Sims. Was a FSB agent told to bring three SIM cards along with the nazi stuff? 😂
It gets stranger (and funnier). This hand written note says "signature unreadable" on the third line from the bottom. 🤣
The whole story: Russia appears to confuse 'The Sims' for SIM cards in possible staged assassination attempt (nypost.com)
"The Ukraine war from a Russian perspective", a podcast from CaspianReport. This channel explains geopolitics well - if you like that sort of thing.
Has anyome else noticed how combustable, or even explosive, huge Russian ammunition and petrol stores are? They seem to go BOOM at least weekly. I have no idea why, but these explosive fires seem to happen near Ukraine in the last couple of months. It's a mystery.
12 hours ago in Bogorodsky,
Two days ago in Belgorod
Seven days ago in Bryansk.
I nominate the Russian Army Signals Corps to the Free Speech Award of 2022 for their role in spreading information about the Russian forces activities in Ukraine to everyone except the Russian people. Especially the Ukrainian miltary have found the Russian radio traffic to be very informative and helpful, but also internasjonal media and inteligence organisations are very grateful for the efforts of the Russian Signals Corps. They would be a worthy winner!
I know we discussed the dangers of making parallels between what is currently happening in Ukraine and what happened under Hitler and the Nazis in Germany in the 1930s and 1940s. However, that said, there are a few other things about the conflict in Ukraine that remind me of times past without having to be seen as direct parallels or a case in point of history specifically repeating itself.
The first of these general similarities goes back to the hottest days of the Cold War during the Cuban Missile Crisis in October 1962 when the US put nuclear missiles in Turkey, near to Russia, an action which then provoked the Soviet Union to put nuclear missiles aimed at the US in their Communist island ally Fidel Castro's Cuba. Part of the agreement which ended the crisis (which could easily have evolved into World War III) stipulated that both the US and the Soviet Union would dismantle and remove the missiles from both Turkey and Cuba respectively. This is similar to how Ukraine, Finland and other countries in Eastern Europe now want to join the NATO alliance, something Russia sees as a threat to its borders. In fact, the need for a buffer zone between Russia and the NATO countries is one of the reasons why Putin went to war in Ukraine in the first place.
A second general connection I've noticed is now ex-military or military types from the West are volunteering to go and fight in Ukraine against the Russian invader. This reminds me a bit of the International Brigades in the 1930s that went to fight against General Franco and the Spanish Fascists in the Spanish Civil War of 1936-1939, though obviously on a much smaller scale.
Thirdly, in the home front in the UK there is also the fact that prime minister Boris Johnson has managed to use his firm response to the ongoing Ukrainian crisis to somewhat deflect from the interminable "Partygate" scandal of illegal parties in Downing Street during the Covid-19 pandemic. This is somewhat reminiscent of how another Conservative prime minister, Margaret Thatcher, used Britain's victory against Argentina in the Falklands War of 1982 to shore up her support in the country at a time when domestically polls showed that she was the most unpopular post-war prime minister. Thatcher later went on to win an even bigger majority than in 1979 at the ensuing June 1983 UK General Election.
The fourth similarity lies in the threatened use by Putin of the Satan II missile which is said to have enough destructive power to put the UK permanently under water. The Russians have threatened to use the missile against any state that stands in their way over their continuing war in Ukraine. Though there may not be any direct parallel with past history it is surely reminiscent of the darkest days of the Cold War when the threat from nuclear weapons and the resultant Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) that their use would entail was a daily consideration and fear for millions of people around the world. Such a missile as Satan II (which is said not yet to be ready for use despite all the scare stories in the media and online) is surely familiar enough to anyone who has read the novels of the likes of Ian Fleming (Moonraker and Thunderball come to mind especially) or watched a James Bond film.
Denis Davydov, an Ukrainian fighter pilot, posts daily (I've heard - I just discovered it) updates from the war on YouTube:
Denys Davydov - YouTube
Today I heard something I would never have guessed. A friend of mine owns a Tesla and he says you can get more money for a used Tesla (or other electric cars I assume) in Ukraine than here in Norway! In Ukraine you have to wait in line for 4-5 hours for just ten liters petrol. If you're lucky enough to own an electric car and a charger it's much easier. Electricity is far more available than petrol in the war-torn country, probably because Ukraine produces their own.
Russia has added Guernsey to its expanding list of unfriendly states and territories. Will this conflict escalate even further? Maybe the Isle of Man or the Orkneys are next! 🧐