Patterico's Pontifications

2/25/2022

Weekend Open Thread

Filed under: General — Dana @ 5:27 pm



[guest post by Dana]

Let’s go!

First news item

Under immense pressure and risking his life, this is leadership in action:

Zelensky’s finest hour here.

Also, brave, defiant Ukrainian soldiers give their all:

A Ukrainian soldier on the ill-fated Snake Island was livestreaming as Russian warships opened fire and wiped out the 13 soldiers stationed there.

Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine Thursday local time. World leaders and diplomats widely condemned the attack and promised strong sanctions in response.

A Russian warship issued a warning to the Ukrainian border guards at Zmiinyi Island – also known as Snake Island – only to be told by one of the guards, “Russian Warship, go f— yourself.”

Social media identified the soldier as a 23-year-old among the troops. All 13 soldiers died “without surrender,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said during an update on Thursday night.

Second news item

Directly targeting Putin:

The US will join the European Union in directly sanctioning Russian President Vladimir Putin and Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, the White House confirmed on Friday.

CNN’s Phil Mattingly and Jeremy Herb reported earlier Friday the US was planning to impose sanctions on Russian President Vladimir Putin according to two people familiar with the decision.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the decision came following a phone call between President Biden and European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen.

“The United States will join them in sanctioning President Putin and Foreign Minister Lavrov and members of the Russian national security team,” she told reporters. “I expect we’ll have more specific details that later this afternoon.”

Third news item

Making history, President Biden nominates first Black woman to Supreme Court:

President Joe Biden on Friday nominated federal appeals court Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson to the Supreme Court, the first Black woman selected to serve on a court that once declared her race unworthy of citizenship and endorsed American segregation.

Introducing Jackson at the White House, Biden declared, “I believe it’s time that we have a court that reflects the full talents and greatness of our nation.”

A fun “small world” story involving Judge Kenji Brown Jackson and Former Speaker of the House Paul Ryan here.

Fourth news item

CPAC speakers reveal what the midterms and 2024 will prioritize:

In his 20-minute speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference, Ron DeSantis hit on everything from immigration and “mob violence” to critical race theory, the Bill of Rights and the peril of a “biomedical security state.”

One thing the Florida governor — who is a U.S. Navy veteran and former member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee — did not mention on Thursday was Ukraine.

It was a curious, but not entirely surprising, omission by one of the GOP’s leading presidential prospects as the world watched the Russian invasion unfold in real time.

DeSantis was hardly alone in avoiding the subject at CPAC, where Russia’s offensive — just hours old — drew only glancing interest at one of the party’s most prominent gatherings of the year. Even in a country where conflicts abroad rarely animate the electorate, it was one of the starkest indicators in decades of how far foreign policy has fallen on the Republican agenda. No longer is the GOP the party whose president once told Mikhail Gorbachev to “tear down this wall.”

Former President Trump is scheduled to give the keynote speech tomorrow night…

Fifth news item

Alexander Vindman writes:

Instead, for two decades, the U.S. entertained illusions about what might be accomplished with Russia, a reluctant partner, while remaining oblivious to opportunities in Ukraine, a far more willing one. In its relationship with Russia, the U.S. had limited prospects of achieving any objectives outside of arms control, whereas with Ukraine it might have successfully influenced regional development.

The seed of this conflict was planted many years ago, across multiple Republican and Democratic administrations. But the Biden administration and its successors will own the geopolitical consequences of this war.

…U.S. leaders cannot absolve themselves of guilt by claiming they did all they could to prevent another invasion; they offered a necessary response, not a sufficient one. Like every administration since the end of the Cold War, Joe Biden’s fell victim to wishful thinking about the Kremlin’s ambitions in Ukraine and Russian President Vladimir Putin’s basic commitment to international norms. In doing so, the Biden administration continued the decades-long practice of allowing deterrence to erode. The paths to prevention were not taken.

Sixth news item

President Biden’s job performance ratings slip via Marist Poll:

President Biden’s job approval rating (39%), notched down from 41% in December, is the lowest of his presidency. Biden’s negative score (55%) matches his worst which he received in that same December poll. Americans are nearly three times as likely to strongly disapprove (41%) of Biden’s job performance than strongly approve (14%).

Biden’s approval rating on his handling of the economy (36%) is his lowest since taking office. Biden’s economic score has been on a steady decline since April 2021 when he achieved his highest rating on the issue (54%). 58% of Americans disapprove of his economic approach, marking his highest disapproval rating on this issue.

Biden also receives his lowest rating on his handling of the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, Americans now divide with slightly more saying they disapprove (49%) of how Biden is doing than approve (47%). Biden’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic has been trending downward since May 2021 when 66% of Americans approved of Biden’s approach.

Seventh news item

This is so good. Read the whole thing:

At Newsweek, Turning Point USA’s Charlie Kirk has written one of the most foolish, self-serving, hypocritical, illiterate, and counterproductive columns I’ve read in a good long while. “The First Amendment has long been a bedrock principle of my worldview,” Kirk begins, before proceeding to demonstrate that, in fact, it has been nothing of the sort. “There are legitimate legal limits to expression,” he writes. “Some things are so objectionable — even downright evil — that they don’t merit society’s protection.” Specifically, Kirk objects to what he describes as the “one ‘substantive evil’” that “Americans can all agree to prevent: worshiping Satan.”

The Devil’s next finest trick, it seems, is to persuade us that the First Amendment doesn’t actually exist.

Eighth news item

Most definitely *not* a great American:

But last night, he was singing a different tune:

Tucker Carlson offered a stunning reversal Thursday night: after months of defending Russian President Vladimir Putin, he blamed the Russian dictator for invading Ukraine.

“What is happening in Ukraine, whatever its scale — and it’s not totally clear right now — but whatever it is it’s a tragedy because war always is a tragedy,” he opened, before blaming the Russian president for the deadly incursion.

“Vladimir Putin started this war,” Carlson said. “So whatever the context of the decision he made he did it, he fired the first shot. He is to blame for what we are seeing in Ukraine.”

It’s easy to see why he pivoted. Just pathetic.

Ninth news item

To mask or not to mask?:

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention outlined the new set of measures for communities where COVID-19 is easing its grip, with less of a focus on positive test results and more on what’s happening at hospitals.

The new system greatly changes the look of the CDC’s risk map and puts more than 70% of the U.S. population in counties where the coronavirus is posing a low or medium threat to hospitals. Those are the people who can stop wearing masks, the agency said.

The agency is still advising people, including schoolchildren, to wear masks where the risk of COVID-19 is high. That’s the situation in about 37% of U.S. counties, where about 28% of Americans live.

The new recommendations do not change the requirement to wear masks on public transportation and indoors in airports, train stations and bus stations. The CDC guidelines for other indoor spaces aren’t binding, meaning cities and institutions even in areas of low risk may set their own rules. And the agency says people with COVID-19 symptoms or who test positive shouldn’t stop wearing masks.

Have a great weekend.

–Dana

585 Responses to “Weekend Open Thread”

  1. What an exhausting week… Happy Friday!

    Dana (5395f9)

  2. What I want to know is, should gas prices increase even more than they have–as a result of the sanctions on Russia–will DCSCA support the sanctions, or say that Ukraine just isn’t that important? Living in a gambling state, I put all of my chips on the latter.

    norcal (5948da)

  3. Dana – Here’s a cartoon for you. Not everyone will like it, but I think it expresses the feelings many of us have.

    (Accidentally posted previously on an earlier thread.)

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  4. Oh yeah. That cartoon nails it, Jim. Good find.

    norcal (5948da)

  5. No Post™ about Rhianna, the first woman ever to be pregnant? 😉

    nk (1d9030)

  6. @2. norcal:

    [ ] Mary Poppins sanctions

    [ ] Tony Soprano sanctions

    Choose.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  7. Comrades, Russian energy exports are unaffected as are SWIFT transfers, which means there are no sanctions, just the illusion of sanctions, so just light a candle for Ukraine for now, and may your grandchildren think kindly of you when they read about it someday.

    nk (1d9030)

  8. Thanks for the chuckle, Jim Miller. Same here.

    Dana (5395f9)

  9. @7 DCSCA:

    [] Never conceded an argument or changed his mind once from interactions on this blog

    There is no other option.

    norcal (5948da)

  10. @7. Will save you some time, norcal: Mary Poppins:

    Oil steadies as U.S. seen unlikely to sanction Russian exports

    https://www.reuters.com/business/energy/oil-pulls-back-view-western-sanctions-russia-wont-choke-supply-2022-02-23/

    Biden ripped for buying Russian oil: ‘We are being conned,’ billionaire oil and supermarket CEO says

    https://www.foxbusiness.com/energy/biden-russian-putin-oil-billionaire-ceo

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  11. And I remember when American drillers and frackers were complaining bitterly that they could not drill and frack when world oil was below $80 a barrel, so put current complaints about oil prices alongside “Pleased to meet you”, “The check is in the mail”, and “Don’t worry, I’ll pull out in time”. You’re being … gaslighted.

    nk (1d9030)

  12. From your second link, DCSCA:

    “The answer is… you open up Alaska. You open up Canada… and then it’s free-flowing.”

    I agree with that. Biden and his advisors need to choose between appeasing climate warriors and getting tough with Russia.

    And let me add this: Europe (and the U.S., for that matter) should have adopted France’s energy scheme (mostly nuclear) long ago, and then it could give Russia the finger. Germany could have led the way on this, but Merkel decided it was in her personal political interest to cancel further nuclear investment. Sad!

    norcal (5948da)

  13. Your portal to Oz:

    https://cpac.conservative.org/

    ‘Follow the yellow click road…’ 😉

    ______

    @12. nk, Recall my late Dad dickering on the phone one summer Saturday afternoon in the ’70s talking w/Conoco or Exxon trying sell a tanker cargo of oil at $4/bbl. Four bucks. Unreal.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  14. @13. I agree with that. Biden and his advisors need to choose between appeasing climate warriors and getting tough with Russia.

    Psaki reiterated today at the presser that’s a non-starter w/t Biden Administration.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  15. @15 It’s always about the domestic politics. Even Hillary Clinton and her speechwriter couldn’t resist taking domestic political potshots while addressing the Ukraine issue in today’s Atlantic article.

    https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2022/02/republicans-ukraine-putin-xi-trump-democracy/622898/

    norcal (5948da)

  16. “Don’t worry, I’ll pull out in time”

    nk (1d9030) — 2/25/2022 @ 6:27 pm

    Do you know what you call people who use the pull out method, nk?

    Parents.

    norcal (5948da)

  17. #9 Dana – Glad you liked it — and thanks much for what you do by writing these posts, and opneing them up for all of us.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  18. US Extremists Have Picked a Side in Ukraine: ‘Lol Putin Is Brilliant’
    White nationalist livestreamer Nicholas Fuentes has made no secret of where his loyalties lie in the Russia-Ukraine conflict.

    “I wish Putin was president of America,” he mused to his 45,000 subscribers on Telegram on Wednesday morning.

    Fifteen hours later, Russian forces invaded Ukraine. And Fuentes, who’s hosting a far-right conference in Florida Friday night, was psyched.

    “I am totally rooting for Russia,” he wrote the following morning. “This is the coolest thing to happen since 1/6.”

    UKRAINE WILL BE DESTROYED”, added Fuentes. ………“I never doubted you [Putin], my Czar.”
    ………
    “Lol Putin is brilliant. Western Media, which is obsessed with ‘muh Nazis’ will have a tough time spinning this one,” wrote (Andrew Torba, CEO of Gab), who’s sponsoring Fuentes’ conference, the America First Political Action Conference (AFPAC), this weekend. “What he really means is Ukraine needs to be liberated and cleansed from the degeneracy of the secular western globalist empire.”
    ………
    ……(F)or at least a decade, Russia has been cultivating deep ties and even bankrolling ultranationalist and far-right movements elsewhere. Religious fundamentalists and white supremacists, inspired partially by the writings of a Kremlin-linked ideologue, have hailed Putin as a white Christian crusader on a mission to restore traditional values.
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  19. Is this one of the reasons India abstained in the Security Council vote?

    Ukraine is the biggest exporter of sunflower oil to India, accounting for 70% of India’s imports.
    Russia is the next significant contributor, accounting for 20% of India’s sunflower oil imports.

    If so, it’s time for farmers in Kansas to plant sunflowers.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  20. To mask or not to mask?:

    Right in time for the SOTU. Go figure. Funny how science and politics almost always perfectly aligns for Democrats.

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  21. https://oilprice.com/Energy/Crude-Oil/The-US-Imports-Record-Share-Of-Russian-Oil-Despite-Tensions.html

    -‘In 2020, Valero and ExxonMobil were the biggest buyers of Russian oil and oil products, according to customs data cited by Bloomberg.’

    U.S. oil and petroleum products imports from Russia From July, 2020 to November, 2021

    https://www.statista.com/statistics/1094286/us-imports-of-russian-oil-and-petroleum-products/

    -‘In 1995, EIA data puts Russia’s share of US oil imports at almost nothing, before steadily rising to an average of six per cent at the start of 2012. In 2019, though, it began to shoot up to its current levels.’

    https://www.eia.gov/petroleum/data.php#imports

    https://www.yahoo.com/now/where-does-us-oil-happen-040930115.html

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  22. Rip @19. But there was no Russian collusion. Only mean tweets.

    nk (1d9030)

  23. Russia vetoes UN demand that Russia stop attacking Ukraine

    ‘UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Russia vetoed a U.N. Security Council resolution on Friday demanding that Moscow immediately stop its attack on Ukraine and withdraw all troops, a defeat the United States and its supporters knew was inevitable but said would highlight Russia’s global isolation.

    The vote was 11 in favor, with Russia voting no and China, India and the United Arab Emirates abstaining, which showed significant but not total opposition to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of his country’s smaller and militarily weaker neighbor.

    The resolution’s failure paves the way for supporters to call for a quick vote on a similar resolution in the 193-member U.N. General Assembly, where there are no vetoes. There was no immediate word on a timetable for an assembly vote. The vote was delayed for two hours the United States and Albania, which co-sponsored the resolution, and their supporters scrambled behind the scenes to get wavering nations to support the resolution. China’s decision to abstain, rather than use its veto alongside usual ally Russia, was seen as a diplomatic achievement.

    “Not surprisingly, Russia exercised its veto power today in an effort to protect Russia’s premeditated, unprovoked, unjustified and unconscionable war in Ukraine,” U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield said. “But let me make one thing clear: Russia, you can veto this resolution, but you cannot veto our voices,” she told her Russian counterpart. “You cannot veto the truth. You cannot veto our principles. You cannot veto the Ukrainian people.”

    Brazil’s Ambassador Ronaldo Costa Filho, whose country’s vote was initially in question but turned into a yes, said his government is “gravely concerned” about Russia’s military action. “A line has been crossed, and this council cannot remain silent,” he said. In response, Russian U.N. Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia reiterated his country’s claims that it is standing up for people in eastern Ukraine, where Russian-backed separatists have been fighting the government for eight years. He accused the West of ignoring Ukrainian abuses there. “You have made Ukraine a pawn in your geopolitical game, with no concern whatsoever about the interests of the Ukrainian people,” he said, calling the failed resolution “nothing other than yet another brutal, inhumane move in this Ukrainian chessboard.”

    China’s U.N. Ambassador Zhang Jun said China abstained because all efforts must be made for a diplomatic solution and a response from the Security Council “should be taken with great caution rather than adding fuel to fire.” He warned that Western sanctions “may completely shut the door to a peaceful solution” and echoed Russian claims that it is being threatened by NATO’s expansion over the years. “Russia’s legitimate security aspirations should be given attention and addressed properly,” Zhang said, and “Ukraine should become a bridge between east and west, not an outpost for confrontation among major powers.”

    Britain’s U.N. Ambassador Barbara Woodward called Russia’s claim that it was acting in self-defense “absurd.” “Russia’s only act of self-defense is the vote they have cast against this resolution today,” she said. Ukraine’s U.N. Ambassador Sergiy Kyslytsya accused Russia of committing “war crimes” “There will be no hospitality for your troops in our territory,” he told Russia’s Nebenia.
    “You can stop a vote in this chamber,” Kyslytsya said. “But what may stop the war is unfortunately the bodies, and thousands of bodies of Russian soldiers that will be delivered to their mothers in Russia — whether you like it or not — because we have to defend our territory. We have to defend ourselves.”

    Speaking to reporters after the meeting, U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres recalled that “the United Nations was born out of war to end war.” “Today, that objective was not achieved,” he said. “But we must never give up. We must give peace another chance.”

    The resolution’s supporters had agreed to weaken the text to get additional support. They eliminated putting the resolution under Chapter 7 of the U.N. Charter, which can be enforced militarily, and language stating “that the situation in Ukraine constitutes a breach of international peace and security, and that the Russian Federation has committed acts of aggression against Ukraine.” They also changed “condemns” to “deplores” in sections about Russia’s actions.

    In the draft that was put to a vote, the council would have deplored Russia’s “aggression” against Ukraine “in the strongest terms” and demanded an immediate halt to its use of force and the immediate, complete and unconditional withdrawal of all Russian forces from Ukraine’s internationally recognized borders.

    It would have deplored Russia’s Feb. 21 decision declaring areas of Ukraine’s Donetsk and Luhansk regions independent and would have ordered Russia to “immediately and unconditionally reverse the decision.” And it would have reaffirmed the council’s commitment “to the sovereignty, independence, unity, and territorial integrity of Ukraine within its internationally recognized borders. In a show of support before the meeting, representatives of the 27 nations belonging to the European Union stood outside the Security Council chamber behind Ukraine’s blue and yellow flag with Ukraine’s Kyslytsya.

    The Security Council resolution would have been legally binding. General Assembly resolutions aren’t legally binding but serve as a reflection of world opinion. Thomas-Greenfield, the U.S. ambassador, said supporters of the resolution will be taking the issue of Russia’s invasion to the assembly where “the nations of the world can, will and should hold Russia accountable and stand in solidarity with Ukraine.” “Russia cannot, and will not, veto accountability,” she said, surrounded by dozens of ambassadors from supporting countries.’

    https://news.yahoo.com/russia-vetoes-un-demand-russia-001426825-023649331.html

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  24. Cnn/msdnc anti gun hosts have difficulties dealing with women and girls holding ak-47’s saying they are ready to defend their homes.

    asset (45e5e3)

  25. Sanctioning Putin is for domestic consumption. He’s all in. He wins or he dies. More interesting would be a referral to the World Court at The Hague, charging him with war crimes. Even if he wins, he would be unable to leave the Soviet Union Russia, and would be handed over the moment he falls from power. Which might be soon as his voters might not like living in the 18th century.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  26. I think that Tucker pivoted when the phone call from the boss said he’d be out on the effing street tomorrow if he didn’t. His posse must be so confused, but they’ll fall in line.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  27. Pelosi Says It’s Important to ‘Understand the Brilliance’ of Biden’s Response to Russian Invasion of Ukraine

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) touted President Joe Biden’s response to Russia launching an invasion of Ukraine, saying Friday that the president’s experience working on foreign policy has prepared him for an event like this. Speaking to reporters, Pelosi highlighted the “brilliance” of Biden’s handling of the Russia Ukraine conflict.

    “I think it’s really important for people to understand the brilliance with which President Biden is conducting this,” Pelosi said, according to Fox News’ Chad Pergram. “This is a man who served decades as chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee. He knows the arena. He knows the personalities.”

    This comes after the Speaker on Wednesday lauded Biden’s decision to impose sanctions on Russia. “It’s stunning to see in this day and age a tyrant roll into a country. This is the same tyrant who attacked our democracy in 2016,” she said at a news conference, appearing to refer to the debunked theory that Putin interfered in the U.S. presidential election in 2016.

    President Joe Biden placed sanctions directly on Putin on Friday. But because Putin has buried his wealth, making it difficult to freeze his assets, sanctioning the Russian president is largely symbolic. Over the past few days, Biden has been imposing a number of Russian sanctions, including on large Russian financial institutions and elites with close ties to Putin. He has also worked with European allies to ice the Nord Stream 2 pipeline.

    However, the U.S. president is not willing to remove Russia from the SWIFT international banking system at this time despite calls to do so from several U.S. lawmakers, world leaders and Ukrainian officials.

    https://townhall.com/tipsheet/landonmion/2022/02/25/pelosi-says-its-important-to-understand-the-brilliance-of-bidens-response-to-russian-invasion-of-ukraine-n2603825

    OMG.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  28. the first Black woman selected to serve on a court that once declared her race unworthy of citizenship and endorsed American segregation.

    So, for you lawyers and history buffs out there, which was the worst Supreme Court decision for Blacks?

    * Dredd Scott v. Sandford (1856) — said blacks could not be citizens and that slavery was effectively legal in all states

    * United States v. Cruikshank (1876) — legalized lynching and rested all protection of blacks on state authorities

    * The Civil Rights Cases (1883) — said that the 13th and 14th amendments did not allow Congress to pass laws protecting blacks from private parties.

    * Pace v. Alabama (1883) — found that interracial marriage bans affected all races equally

    * Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) — separate but equal

    Kevin M (38e250)

  29. Biden’s actions, as far as they go, may have teeth. I think he’s following the Democrat’s largely discredited measured-reaction playbook rather that the GOP shock-and-awe one, and I think S&A would be a better play here. I blame the Germans mostly (and Biden’s wimpiness partly). This isn’t leadership so much as committee groupthink. But it is at least got a chance, and maybe the other shoe waiting to drop will have some effect.

    The object has to be to separate Putin from the Russian oligarchs. Let the oligarchs know that if the depose Putin, deliver his head on a platter to the Ukrainians and have their troops exit ALL of Ukraine, they can keep most of their toys (subject to some charges for storage and handling).

    Kevin M (38e250)

  30. Right in time for the SOTU. Go figure. Funny how science and politics almost always perfectly aligns for Democrats.

    Well, if masks prevent disease and Congress wants to not use them, who am I to argue?

    Kevin M (38e250)

  31. “… Ukraine needs to be liberated and cleansed from the degeneracy of the secular western globalist empire.”

    People on the far right today are just as cynical as the communists in their notions of liberation vs. oppression. There’s a lot of “freedom for me but not for thee.”

    There are people who think the establishment clause was the great error in the nation’s founding, a sneaky way for “secular humanists” to abolish religion. They want the state to decide what your religion should be — and they assume it will be their own religion.

    It’s also strange how the “America First” crowd can be so eager to accuse America of spreading degeneracy around the world and forcing other countries into a “liberal empire.” In this view, a McDonald’s on the Champs-Elysees is a tragedy, whereas Putin bombing the daylights out of Ukraine — well, he’s not as bad as Biden, because “Putin never made me wear a mask,” or something, and he made a strategic alliance with the Russian Orthodox Church, so he must be more righteous than our “secular” imperialists.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  32. I wore a good mask before they made me and will wear one still, for a while anyway. I figure I’ll get this eventually, but I’d rather wait until they have the Pfizer pill well-stocked. YMMV.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  33. Just to recap, since Putin started his invasion of Donbas on Monday and full-scale invasion on Wednesday….
    Did Trump praise Putin? Yes, using words like “genius” and “savvy”.
    Did Trump condemn Putin for, illegally invading a sovereign state, an invasion that was without provocation or real justification? No.
    Did Trump express any support for the real victim, Ukraine? No.
    Did Trump express any sympathy for the Ukrainian people under attack? No.
    Did Trump express any support for Ukraine’s president? No.
    Did Trump blame Putin’s invasion on Biden, a fellow American? Yes.
    And this is yet another reason why Trump is unpatriotic and un-American, unfit for any future governmental work.

    And let’s forget about Manafort’s role in Ukraine, taking a job in 2010 with the pro-Putin Party of Regions, consulting Putin’s stooge, Yanukovych. Manafort was there when the Maidan happened, and he was there when Yanukovych trashed the Ukrainian constitution and murdered protesters.
    Let’s also not forget that Manafort’s hired associate was Kilimnik, a Russian spy.
    Let’s also not forget that Trump brought Manafort on board as his campaign manager.

    Just Saying: Very few American journalists are connecting the dots between Paul Manafort’s work in Ukraine, the Trump campaign’s change to the GOP platform in 2015, Trump’s withholding of support and attempted blackmail of Zelensky, and this invasion.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  34. [ ] Beth Dutton sanctions

    Kevin M (38e250)

  35. Psaki reiterated today at the presser that’s a non-starter w/t Biden Administration.

    Yeah, well. What will they say when the House is 280-155 GOP?

    Kevin M (38e250)

  36. Zelensky just provided a morning update.

    ‘Good morning, Ukrainians! There’s a lot of fake information online that allegedly I am calling our army to surrender weapons and the evacuation is underway. Listen to me: I am here, we will not surrender any weapons, we will defend our country because our weapons is our truth’

    The US offered to help him leave the country, and said he “no”. He’s a real leader, his people should be proud. God protect him and his family.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  37. @36. What else: they’ll blame Covid.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  38. 10 Days Ago Joe Biden Assured Ukrainian Leader Zelensky that US Would Respond “Swiftly and Decisively” to Russian Aggression — On Friday Joe Left for Delaware

    mg (8cbc69)

  39. The democrat posse is being run by the Alzheimer infected that should be in an old folks home.

    mg (8cbc69)

  40. The arrogance and controlling attitude by the U.S. State Dept tells us all we really need to know.
    The Biden administration has created this crisis between Russia and Ukraine for a convenient purpose, and the White House is not about to let Zelenskyy screw it up and create peace.
    The U.S. wants President Zelenskyy to leave Ukraine, so the State Department can take full control over the narrative. Zelenskyy is refusing to leave.

    mg (8cbc69)

  41. Kevin M (38e250) — 2/25/2022 @ 10:31 pm

    None of the above.

    The worst decision for blacks was Roe V. Wade. Also the worst for women.

    felipe (484255)

  42. I am surprised Shelby County, where John Roberts effectively gutted the Voting Rights Act, on the list. Not the number one, perhaps, but still worthy of note.

    Victor (4959fb)

  43. Paul Montagu (5de684) — 2/25/2022 @ 10:46 pm

    That’s a long post just to focus on something Trump is doing now that doesn’t have any effect on anything and to avoid the actual failure of the guy the NeverTrump/D True Cons picked.

    Funny thing is Putin doesn’t needs spies in Biden’s admin. JB is giving intelligence to China who is giving it to Russia directly.

    But sure, let’s keep pushing RussiaGate and the Ukrainian impeachment plan.

    frosty (0dec90)

  44. Yeah, well. What will they say when the House is 280-155 GOP?

    Kevin M (38e250) — 2/25/2022 @ 10:50 pm

    I’m guessing the same thing or something equally as nonsensical and FoS. What do you think they’ll say?

    frosty (0dec90)

  45. 62% of Americans think Putin WOULDN’T have invaded Ukraine if Trump were president, poll claims – and 59% say Biden’s weakness made Russia decide to declare war

    A recent Harvard Center for American Political Studies-Harris Poll survey revealed that 62 percent of those Americans polled felt that Putin would not be launching an offense against Ukraine if Trump, rather than incumbent President Joe Biden, was still in office. Broken down, 39 percent of Democrats and 85 percent of Republicans believe that Trump would have made Putin think twice about launching the war.

    Meanwhile, 59 percent of Americans said it was Biden’s perceived weakness that had prompted Putin to launch the bold attack in the first place, The Hill reported of the survey.

    JF (e1156d)

  46. Paul this is an honest and sad recap of the situation

    Just to recap, since Putin started his invasion of Donbas on Monday and full-scale invasion on Wednesday….
    Did Trump praise Putin? Yes, using words like “genius” and “savvy”.
    Did Trump condemn Putin for, illegally invading a sovereign state, an invasion that was without provocation or real justification? No.
    Did Trump express any support for the real victim, Ukraine? No.
    Did Trump express any sympathy for the Ukrainian people under attack? No.
    Did Trump express any support for Ukraine’s president? No.
    Did Trump blame Putin’s invasion on Biden, a fellow American? Yes.

    What’s surprising is the number of Americans that are mimicking Trump, especially with the gushing praise of Putin and the absurd misplaced criticism of Zelensky. It’s as if we’ve entered a Bizarro world…where all previous sensibilities have been flipped. I personally saw it up close yesterday where I was told that evil was in fact brilliant. No it isn’t.

    First, let’s be honest about the attack. There’s nothing noble about erasing the freedoms and democracy of a people of an independent, sovereign nation. Putin saw Ukraine’s embrace of western liberalism as a threat to his autocratic rule and a potential future loss to NATO. There’s nothing genius about attacking a non-NATO member on its border, after repeatedly bullying it with cyber attacks and transparent internal meddling. We don’t applaud the bully; we call him out.

    There’s nothing savvy about Merkel and Germany pivoting toward Putin and natural gas…it was a mistake on their part….just as the Munich agreement was a historical misread and mistake for Chamberlain. For those that say that we should still appreciate Putin’s tactics, drawing analogy to another evil like Pearl Harbor, I think you miss the lesson. Imagine 9/12 praising Bin Laden while bodies are still being pulled out of the wreckage of NYC. Imagine immediately blaming Bush and calling Mullah Omar “savvy” and somehow justified. Complimenting the Japanese on Dec 8th would have likely gotten you a bloodied nose.

    But that’s where we’re at. Americans cannot even come together to call out authoritarian evil. We’re so trapped in our self-indulgent memes and so committed to a flawed persona that there’s no breaking through. We can’t see the forest for the trees and I’m not sure what argument will change this. I suppose we will sadly need a new Pearl Harbor to shock us out of our current state. And then it might be too late….

    AJ_Liberty (3cb02f)

  47. way to work your Hunter contacts, Joe

    Report: China told Russia about U.S. intel on invasion

    The U.S. kept presenting Beijing with intelligence on Russia’s buildup around Ukraine “and beseeched the Chinese to tell Russia not to invade,” according to The Times. The Chinese, including the foreign minister and the ambassador to the U.S., said they did not think an invasion was in the works.

    “After one diplomatic exchange in December,” The Times writes, “U.S. officials got intelligence showing Beijing had shared the information with Moscow.”

    JF (e1156d)

  48. @48 What’s surprising is the number of Americans that are mimicking Trump, especially with the gushing praise of Putin and the absurd misplaced criticism of Zelensky.

    must be a huge number, cuz you say it is

    do these people have names?

    JF (e1156d)

  49. 99% of Trump’s supporters couldn’t find Ukraine on the map.

    nk (1d9030)

  50. A regular map, with dark borders, and place names, and the countries in different colors, and a photo of a reclining Melania in the middle of Slovenia.

    nk (1d9030)

  51. Interesting view of the response from Russian allies and client states

    https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2022/2/25/where-do-russias-allies-stand-as-western-powers-slam-moscow

    Time123 (bb28d9)

  52. @50 Tucker Carlson, Gen. Flynn, Candice Owens, Steve Bannon & Eric Prince just to name a few.

    Time123 (bb28d9)

  53. @49, so you think we shouldn’t have tried to convince China to discourage Russia from an attack? Why do you think that’s a bad idea or corrupt? It clearly didn’t work, but seeing as our strategy was discouraging the attack it seems like a reasonable effort.

    Or is this just a knee jerk “everything they do must be bad”?

    Time123 (bb28d9)

  54. He’s a real leader, his people should be proud.

    Paul Montagu (5de684) — 2/25/2022 @ 11:54 pm

    Interestingly enough, his last job before this was playing the president of Ukraine in a television sitcom.

    As an American, I hate to admit when any country manages to surpass us, in any way. But I’m just going to say it anyway: their current TV star president is so much better than our recent TV star president.

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  55. That’s a long post just to focus on something Trump is doing now that doesn’t have any effect on anything and to avoid the actual failure of the guy the NeverTrump/D True Cons picked.

    One, I reserve the right to criticize the leader of the GOP and frontrunner for the 2024 nomination when he chimes in, and he chimed in.
    Two, I didn’t vote for Biden and I already criticized him for not doing enough on sanctions, both in 2014 and today. The fact that Xi shared our intelligence with Putin is only one more reason that we need a more confrontational strategy with the ChiCom dictator.

    But sure, let’s keep pushing RussiaGate and the Ukrainian impeachment plan.

    Dishonest. Disingenuous.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  56. But that’s where we’re at. Americans cannot even come together to call out authoritarian evil. We’re so trapped in our self-indulgent memes and so committed to a flawed persona that there’s no breaking through. We can’t see the forest for the trees and I’m not sure what argument will change this. I suppose we will sadly need a new Pearl Harbor to shock us out of our current state. And then it might be too late….

    I was naive enough to believe that, surely, a devastating pandemic would unite Americans against a common enemy. Look how that turned out.

    Dana (5395f9)

  57. JF, here’s a clip of Nick Fuentes getting a round of applause for Russia.

    https://twitter.com/benlorber8/status/1497407269587206144?s=21

    Time123 (bb28d9)

  58. China is in as ambivalent a position with Russia as the West is. A three-thousand year old civilization versus the paranoid and treacherous descendants of 15th century Neanderthals armed with nuclear weapons, and just a steppe away. How long did Communism keep them together? Ten, twelve years?

    nk (1d9030)

  59. This has to be seen to be believed.

    https://twitter.com/jaredlholt/status/1497472658329378819?s=21

    Time123 (bb28d9)

  60. Trump threatens to withhold aid from Ukraine, aid meant to help them defend themselves against Russia, unless they agree to uncover dirt on his next election opponent. Trumplicans say: “Fake News! Nothing to see here!”

    Biden sends intelligence to China to try to get their help in deterring a Russian attack on Ukraine. Trumplicans say: “ disgraceful! Week! And besides, Putin is so dreamy, I want to kiss him and have his babies!“

    No big shock. I mean, they’ve been worshiping one strongman since 2016. Of course they’ll fall head over heels for another.

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  61. That’s a long post just to focus on something Trump is doing now that doesn’t have any effect on anything and to avoid the actual failure of the guy the NeverTrump/D True Cons picked.

    This is funny. Because Trump is the frontrunner in the GOP for 2024, everything he says and does matters and should be exposed to sunlight, especially as enough gullible Americans fell for his con once before and gave us four years of him in the WH, and two more years of continued deceitful vindictiveness and chaos in his effort to fully co-opt the Republican Party. So, yeah, what he says and does still matters, just as whatever any potential nominee from either party for an upcoming presidential election says and does matter. (Moreso with Trump because we already know the levels he will sink to to get *his* way.)

    Dana (5395f9)

  62. This has to be seen to be believed.

    Time123 (bb28d9) — 2/26/2022 @ 6:57 am

    In one sense, I believed it even before I saw it. In another sense, I’ve seen it several times now, and I still don’t believe it.

    Greene, Gosar, and Rogers should never be allowed to hold office again. Sadly, openly embracing white nationalism is no longer an automatic disqualifier. But hey, JF and mg, look on the bright side. That means you’ve still got a chance!

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  63. Time123,

    I see that Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gossar also spoke at the white nationalist conference. It’s good for people to see where politicians really stand on issues. From leader Nick Fuentes:

    White nationalist Nick Fuentes, who told the crowd, “Our secret sauce here – it’s these young, White men.”

    Fuentes’ line about young White men received hoots and hollers of approval.

    Additionally:

    “America and the world has forgotten about them, but not us,” he continued. “You know, they say about America, diversity is our strength, you know? And I look at China, I look at Russia, who – can we give a round of applause for Russia?”

    The crowd obliged and raucously cheered the nuclear power that launched an unprovoked invasion of Ukraine this week. Some in the audience began chanting, “Putin, Putin,” to which Fuentes replied, “Absolutely, absolutely.”

    Dana (5395f9)

  64. On any given day, Cook County Jail will have between 2,250 and 2,700 inmates under mental health treatment. How attendees are there at CPAC?

    nk (1d9030)

  65. How *many* attendees

    nk (1d9030)

  66. It’s really wierd how mainstream white supremacy has become in the GOP. Even the people who don’t embrace seem to easily overlook it.

    Time123 (bb28d9)

  67. Even the people who don’t embrace seem to easily overlook it.

    Further evidence of “party before all else” loyalties. It is now expected that values, integrity, and morality take a backseat.

    Dana (5395f9)

  68. Dana, thank you for taking time to transcribe what that Racist POS said. Worth pointing out that the crowd cheered along with him.

    Time123 (bb28d9)

  69. Wait! This is AFPAC, not CPA? Oh, come on! What do you expect? I’m sorry I wasted the pixels.

    nk (1d9030)

  70. @54, Thanks for the assist Time, but I’m not sure if JF was making a good-faith request….or that he would appreciate quotes from Laura Ingraham saying that Zelensky’s speech imploring Putin to not attack was “a really pathetic display” or Tucker Carlson repeatedly questioning why the Russian President was being villified….or Jennifer Griffin having to push back against Sean Hannity’s claim that the invasion was all the fault of Joe Biden. FNC wouldn’t be pushing this cr@p if there wasn’t a market for it and if it didn’t fit the view of a certain ex-President (whose name I won’t mention for fear of triggering JF’s red alert). I don’t think JF cares about the poll that finds Republicans have a more negative view of Biden than of an autocrat like Putin. Oh, like frosty, he’ll squirm the conversation in some tangent direction to avoid my broader points…and around and around the pole we’ll go. The question becomes what’s really the point of engagement? Genuine conversation begins with respect….and I don’t think JF respects any divergence from the GOP party line…..

    AJ_Liberty (3cb02f)

  71. Speaking of Trump, and yes I will talk about him no matter who whines about it, guess who’s the keynote speaker the 2022 CPAC. Yep, you got it, the Former Guy.
    If you want to know Trump’s influence over CPAC, guess where they put DeSantis, Trump’s chief political rival for the 2024 nomination. That’s right, an early afternoon slot last Thursday, the first day of the conference, when attendees are just getting situated.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  72. This applies to Fuentes, Carlson and others.

    So #Putin’s war on #Ukraine is showing us, again, that the #AntiWar Right is like the antiwar left.
    Apart from a small and usually less influential number of principled and consistent (if arguably foolish) activists, they’re not actually antiwar; they’re just on the other side.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  73. AJ, I know engaging with him is usually a waste of time, but his rejection was just to easily disprovable….couldn’t resist.

    Time123 (bb28d9)

  74. Paul,

    I think the placement of speakers certainly signaled where the group stands on a 2024 nominee. Also, curious to see whether/where Trump lands on talking about Ukraine/Russia, given that DeSantis didn’t mention it. Will Trump do his usual song-and-dance (Yay Putin!), or will he see an opening to gather support from the Republicans in leadership/Congress who did come out and condemn the invasion? Are there enough points to score that it would make it worthwhile (and possibly alienate the pro-Putin members?

    But without a doubt, we know that his whole pathetic shtick about a rigged election will certainly underpin all of his comments. And I believe he will bring it up. Repeatedly.

    Dana (5395f9)

  75. But without a doubt, we know that his whole pathetic shtick about a rigged election will certainly underpin all of his comments. And I believe he will bring it up. Repeatedly.

    Dana (5395f9) — 2/26/2022 @ 7:32 am

    Anyone want to take that bet? Because I don’t. I’m trying to SAVE money, not LOSE it.

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  76. Greene, Gosar, and Rogers should never be allowed to hold office again.

    I agree.

    Sadly, openly embracing white nationalism is no longer an automatic disqualifier.

    Disqualifier? Heck, if things keep going the way they are, I think we’ll see it become an actual requirement for office in the GOP!

    Dana (5395f9)

  77. Dana: “I was naive enough to believe that, surely, a devastating pandemic would unite Americans against a common enemy.”

    I’m right there with you. I thought, ok, a mask is annoying and a vaccine carries some minute risk, but let’s each do what we can to reduce transmission and the serious side effects that could overwhelm our health care system. Let’s help out our local restaurants put in a tough position. The fact that it all got hyper political and toxic shows that we got a serious problem. And people continue to not want to honestly face the problem that tribalism is killing our democracy. The first step for an addict to start recovering is to admit that there’s a problem….

    AJ_Liberty (3cb02f)

  78. Christopher Miller has been a correspondent in Ukraine for a while, he’s a good guy to follow on Twitter on this subject. Posted today at 2:17am PST.

    Zelensky: ‘We successfully fought off enemy attacks. We are defending our country, our land, future of our children. Kyiv & key places near the capital are under our control. The occupiers wanted to capture our capital and install their puppets like Donetsk. We broke their idea.’

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  79. Anyone know what time Putin is speaking at CPAC?

    Time123 (bb28d9)

  80. The WSJ is right in describing how we misread Putin over the years. The first sign that he was a bad actor was when he poisoned Yushchenko after the 2004 Orange Revolution, but there should’ve been no doubt after Putin invaded western Georgia.
    Looking in the rearview mirror, 2008 was a time when we should’ve pivoted away from Putin and toward the more real western ally, Ukraine.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  81. RIP Gary Booker (76). Lead singer of Procol Harum.

    Now really a whiter shade of pale.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  82. @80. A totalitarian response to a normal tourist visit by Russians engaging in legitimate political discourse.

    nk (1d9030)

  83. Good news, especially that Turkey is behaving like an ally of NATO for once instead of an Ally In Name Only.

    Turkey Bans Russia warships from entering the Black Sea. Zelensky announces move after call with Erdogan https://liveuamap.com/en/2022/26-february-turkey-bans-russia-warships-from-entering-the via @Joyce_Karam #Ukraine

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  84. RIP Bob Beckel (73). Democratic strategist and Fox News panelist.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  85. Let’s [not] forget about Manafort’s role in Ukraine, taking a job in 2010 with the pro-Putin Party of Regions, consulting Putin’s stooge, Yanukovych. Manafort was there when the Maidan happened, and he was there when Yanukovych trashed the Ukrainian constitution and murdered protesters

    I saw a super-Trumpy Putin admirer insinuate that Maidan was really a (nefarious) U.S.-sponsored “regime change” operation. I hadn’t seen that take before. I found an article on some fringe site — can’t remember if it was far left or far right — saying that Maidan wasn’t spontaneous at all, but initiated by the CIA.

    It was another example of how “America First” can veer into Blame America First, and how it has very little to do with American values.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  86. Zelensky has really risen to the occasion, and then some. That’s what strength and courage look like.
    Here in America, too many people have come to believe that strength consists of bullying, braggadocio, disregard for laws and ethics … and perpetual whining that the system is very unfair if one doesn’t get one’s way.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  87. North Carolina officials reject Cawthorn claim that Constitution’s insurrectionist ban no longer applies
    ………..
    In his lawsuit, Cawthorn claims the 14th Amendment provision was intended to apply only to former confederates who fought in the Civil War, and he cited a subsequent 1872 “amnesty” law that waived the 14th Amendment prohibition for those confederates as evidence of his claim.

    But the state AG’s office, led by Democratic Attorney General Josh Stein, disagreed with Cawthorn’s interpretation, citing comments from legislators who helped pass the 1872 law and noting that Congress itself had applied the 14th Amendment prohibition in 1919 against a man named Victor Berger, who was barred from office for violating the Espionage Act during World War I.
    ………
    The bulk of the state attorneys’ argument is simply that Cawthorn’s lawsuit is premature. The state elections board gives candidates ample opportunity to defend themselves against challenges and has made no ruling in Cawthorn’s case. In addition, Cawthorn’s challenge comes amid a court-ordered redistricting that could affect the district Cawthorn is running to represent, which may make the challenge against him moot.
    ………..
    From the brief: Plaintiff also lacks standing because his claims are not ripe. The ripeness doctrine aims to “prevent the courts, through avoidance of premature adjudication, from entangling themselves in abstract disagreements over administrative policies.”

    Sometimes the jokes just write themselves.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  88. I found an article on some fringe site

    i.e. another article, because I wanted to see if there was anything behind the Trumper dolt’s “America bad” take.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  89. Germany OKs weapons for Ukraine in major shift on military aid
    Germany has authorized the Netherlands to send Ukraine 400 rocket-propelled grenade launchers to aid in the fight against Russian invaders, according to two EU officials — marking an abrupt shift in Berlin’s military policy amid pressure from EU and NATO allies.

    Until Saturday, Germany had clung to a longstanding practice of not permitting lethal weapons that it controlled to be transferred into a conflict zone.
    ………
    The reversal could mean a rapid increase in European military assistance for Ukraine, as large portions of the Continent’s weapons and ammunition are at least in part German-manufactured, giving Berlin legal control over their transfer. Yet Berlin’s changing stance does not necessarily mean all requests for arms shipments will be approved, as each case is decided individually.

    Estonia, in particular, had said it wanted to send old howitzers but was prevented from doing so because Germany was withholding its approval. Estonia bought the weapons from Finland, which gave its sign-off, but Germany also has to OK the transfer because it originally sold the howitzers to Finland.
    ……….
    Poland started sending ammunition by land, while Estonia and Latvia on Friday said they were beginning to truck fuel, Javelin anti-armor weapons and medical supplies to the Ukraine border for hand-off to Ukrainian forces. Elsewhere, the Czech Republic said it would send guns and ammunition, and Slovakia said it would send ammunition, diesel and kerosene.
    ………
    The Netherlands said it will send 200 Stinger anti-aircraft defense systems to Ukraine — often the top-requested type of military aid among Ukrainian soldiers and officials (apart from Western powers sending their own planes and forces to fight with Ukraine). And Belgium announced it would supply Ukraine with 2,000 machine guns and 3,800 tonnes of fuel.
    ………
    ……… Germany has also taken flack from some allies for its opposition to barring Russia from the SWIFT international payment system, which European countries notably use to buy energy from Russia. While there was some initial resistance across the EU to such a ban, the opposition has rapidly dwindled following the invasion and amid pressure from Ukraine. EU countries like Poland are now publicly leaning on Germany to follow suit.
    ……….

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  90. Strength is beating a bunch of cave dwelling towel heads, something the United States Military and the Booosh republicans would not do.

    mg (8cbc69)

  91. “America First” has always been used by pro-Nazi or outright Nazi groups.

    As for Italo-Hispanic neo-Nazi Nicholas Fuentes, he’s not worth more than six words: “Generalissimo Francisco Franco is still dead.”

    nk (1d9030)

  92. With more and more Hispanics and Blacks migrating to the Trump gop, its obvious why people here want out.

    mg (8cbc69)

  93. Did Trump praise Putin? Yes, using words like “genius” and “savvy”.
    Did Trump condemn Putin for, illegally invading a sovereign state, an invasion that was without provocation or real justification? No.
    Did Trump express any support for the real victim, Ukraine? No.
    etc. …

    Trump’s comments on Ukraine are one more illustration of how he looks at the world through an amoral lens. The things he most admires are strength, wealth, wiliness, and being able to get away with anything one wants to do. He can deploy some of the language of morality — particularly “dishonest” and “corrupt” — to attack other people, but those are merely instrumental concepts to him, not principles that guide him in any way. He certainly knows nothing of honor.

    It’s abundantly clear that Trump admires ruthless autocrats and envies their ability to dominate others without restraint. It’s appalling that so many Americans have chosen to enshrine him as their exemplar of patriotism.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  94. BTW, did you know there’s a paella called Fideua that’s made with pasta instead of rice?

    nk (1d9030)

  95. Of course Putin is to blame for invading Ukraine. The West however is to blame for escalating the situation over many years by pushing NATO expansion and supporting the 2014 coup, which overthrew a democratically elected and nominally pro-Russian government. It simply will not do to say that because Putin was wrong to invade we bear no responsibility for the crisis. Attempting to encroach on Russia’s sphere of influence was inevitably going to provoke a response, and so it has (as realists such as John Mearsheimer predicted years ago). Prudent foreign policy means making decisions in light of how other states are likely to behave (even when they behave wrongly) so as to avoid military conflict.

    American foreign policy elites will never blame themselves for failures, but they are plain for all to see in the past year. Tucker rejects the disastrous US foreign policy consensus and for that we should be grateful.

    Oh, and this invasion didn’t happen under Trump. Anyone trying to claim that this fundamental fact about the invasion is irrelevant or meaningless is delusional.

    mikeybates (c22064)

  96. It’s not Blacks and Hispanics, mg. It’s the Oompa Loompas that are destroying the party.

    nk (1d9030)

  97. There’s some good long-term news, for which Dana’s third news item provides a little more evidence. We are seeing more and more inter-racial romances, and marriages. Paul Ryan had a serious relationship in college with a black woman (who still thought well of him years later). Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson is married to a white doctor (and they have two children together).

    And then there are the relationships that draw less attention. The current Seattle mayor, Bruce Harrell, is the child of a Japanese-American mother and a black father. Congresswoman Marilyn Strickland, who represents Washington’s 10th district, is the child of a Korean mother and a black father. (Both are relative moderates in the Democratic Party.)

    The increasing number of people of mixed race will make it harder, long term, for demagogues to divide us by race. As, more and more, we make love, not war.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  98. Apparently, Putin is using non-uniformed troops to infiltrate and attack from within. These people are not lawful combatants. Their use may be a war crime as it puts civilians in danger of being mistaken for combatants. No one is required to offer them quarter (although I suspect that’s a moot question right now).

    Kevin M (38e250)

  99. As to why Putin didn’t invade earlier:

    He didn’t yet have control of Belarus, which is clearly part of his strategy.
    He must have known that Trump was aiming to pull out of NATO in a second term, which would greatly serve his purpose of turning Russia into the dominant influence over Europe. Attacking Ukraine before the 2020 election would not have been useful in furthering that plan.

    Would Putin have invaded Ukraine in a second Trump term? Why not? He knows that Trump is the one who negotiated the deal to leave Afghanistan to the Taliban; who abruptly abandoned our Kurdish allies in Syria; who wanted a rapid withdrawal of all U.S. forces from Afghanistan, Iraq, Africa, and Germany before he left office in 2021; and who wanted to abandon NATO and torch our alliance with South Korea.

    He knows that Trump doesn’t respect our democratic allies as must as he respects autocrats.

    He also knows that Trump’s “America First” base is dominated by people who’d like to build a wall around the U.S. and forget about the rest of the world. He knows that Trump doesn’t care whether Ukraine remains free and democratic. The Trumpies love to use Ukraine (like Afghanistan) as a cudgel against their domestic enemies, but unless they’re idiots they know that Trump wouldn’t have cared greatly about defending Ukraine — which is one of the reasons they love Trump.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  100. The West however is to blame for escalating the situation over many years by pushing NATO expansion and supporting the 2014 coup, which overthrew a democratically elected and nominally pro-Russian government. It simply will not do to say that because Putin was wrong to invade we bear no responsibility for the crisis. Attempting to encroach on Russia’s sphere of influence was inevitably going to provoke a response, and so it has (as realists such as John Mearsheimer predicted years ago). Prudent foreign policy means making decisions in light of how other states are likely to behave (even when they behave wrongly) so as to avoid military conflict.

    Vlad Putin couldn’t have said it better.
    We accepted NATO expansion because the Balkan and former Warsaw Pact states wanted to join. And now Putin has given them excellent reason that they made the right decision by his unprovoked and illegal invasion.
    Just because Putin has made paranoid comments about NATO, doesn’t mean his paranoia is justified or valid. When he announced that he was invading Donbas, he didn’t cite NATO expansion as the reason, he said that Ukraine had no right to exist.
    It’s also a pro-Putin talking point that Yanukovych’s removal was a “coup”. Yes, he was legitimately elected but he lost his legitimacy when he trashed the Ukrainian constitution and murdered protesters in the Maidan. Yanukovych agreed to a deal with parliament that would keep him in power until December 2014, but then he fled to Russia the next day. Parliament voted him out of the office he abandoned, and then scheduled new elections. The real question is, why wouldn’t the US support that?

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  101. Oh, and this invasion didn’t happen under Trump. Anyone trying to claim that this fundamental fact about the invasion is irrelevant or meaningless is delusional.

    Ha, ha, ha, ha! Relevant to what? Meaningful to what?

    That the milestones of Trump’s Presidency were
    1. His invitation to the Taliban to meet at Camp David;
    2. Covid;
    3. The BLM riots;
    4. The 1/6 Capitol invasion; and
    5. I’ll go along with his claim for this one time, a Presidential election was stolen?

    Even the Cubs won the World Series while Obama was President. Trump was a nothing except for bad things. A bankruptcy of a President. Maybe we should be grateful that the SMOD did not hit us, either?

    Now go get your shoeshine box! Putin’s shoes need a touchup.

    nk (1d9030)

  102. nk, let’s not forget that it was Trump who wanted Putin to rejoin the G7 to make the G8 again.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  103. I agree with Cathy Young: Wow.

    Young Russian soldier cries as the local residents of Sumy tell him that he is not welcome in their country.

    Yes, it’s not the rank-and-file’s fault that a warmongering dictator ordered them into an unjust war.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  104. That too, Paul.

    nk (1d9030)

  105. But that’s where we’re at. Americans cannot even come together to call out authoritarian evil.

    I disagree. Most of us can. The news shows need controversy though, and people like Trump know that they get covered only when they are controversial.

    But sometimes even that doesn’t work. What people were saying earlier in the week abruptly changed when they realized that the American People had taken sides, and not theirs. See Tucker for a prime example.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  106. On Friday Joe Left for Delaware

    That IS a help.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  107. We accepted NATO expansion because the Balkan and former Warsaw Pact states wanted to join.

    Some people on the far right sound just like people on the far left when they claim that an invitation to join an alliance of (democratic) self-governing nations is a way of forcing a U.S.-dominated “secular liberal globalism” on other nations. Somehow Russia is thought to represent an organic “traditional culture,” notwithstanding its long history of imperialism and internal oppression.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  108. Is Pittsburgh in Pennsylvania? Good luck there (not), in the primaries and in November, Trumpcakes!

    nk (1d9030)

  109. @48. ‘I suppose we will sadly need a new Pearl Harbor to shock us out of our current state.’

    ‘We’ had one: September 11, 2001.

    [ ] short-sighted

    [ ] short-memory

    Choose.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  110. @98, “The West however is to blame for escalating the situation over many years by pushing NATO expansion”

    The millions of peoples of Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Albania, Croatia, Montenegro, and North Macedonia loudly disagree with you….and understand that Article 5 is the only thing slowing Putin’s greater ambitions.

    Ukraine posed no strategic threat to Russia, except for it embracing western values of liberalism. Autocrats sit in their mansions, paranoid and fearing the next uprising…fearing that their people will learn the truth….fearing that those people will become emboldened to want something better…fearing an inglorious and pitiful death. You may prefer an America that placates and appeases authoritarians like Putin. I don’t.

    Foreign policy should be smart and not unnecessarily provocative…..but Russia faces no external threats and nothing previously stood in the way of it becoming less corrupt and more prosperous…except for it’s own failed kleptocratic system. Let’s not give Putin an out on his monstrous aggression by trying to spread it around. Those 14 countries deserve a chance at self rule and economic self-determination. Let’s not minimize that….

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  111. Do we accept that countries in our sphere of influence will have a military alliance with foreign great powers? Cuba agreed to host the Soviet missiles, so why did we complain? Other countries have security concerns, too, and it does not matter whether or not those concerns are rational. All that matters is whether or not they can be reasonably accommodated.

    Yanukovych was democratically elected and never democratically removed. He agreed to elections along with the opposition leaders the day before the coup. The protestors did not accept the terms and overthrew the government, which is a coup. It does not matter that the government overreacted in response to the protests; that unfortunately always happens. Did Nixon (or Jim Rhodes) lose legitimacy after the Kent State episode in a way that would justify a violent overthrow of the US or Ohio governments? This is absurd.

    Coups are acceptable, it seems, when US-backed. (Which is of course an old story.)

    mikeybates (c22064)

  112. @98 There are 3 big problems with your analysis of the situation.

    1. There no coup in Ukraine in 2014. There were protest that lead to violence and Russia invaded the Crimea. But there wasn’t a coup.
    2. While Ukraine has been moving closer into alignment with Western Europe Russian invasion isn’t in response to any recent specific acts by NATO or the west. There have been no new agreements in the last few years nor has there been any recent increase in the se of Military hardware to Ukraine.
    3. Most importantly; Your analysis ignores any agency by the Ukrainian people or their leaders and paints their actions as just following the will of the US/NATO/EU. I think recent events should make pretty clear that the Ukrainian people know what they want / don’t want and are willing to fight for it. If the US could make other counties fight against long odds just because it’s in our interest the taliban wouldn’t have taken over Afghanistan so quickly.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  113. their current TV star president is so much better than our recent TV star president.

    Well, we did have a better one earlier.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  114. Here’s another fun fact for Vlad Putin: There are 12 million military-age males in Ukraine.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  115. Gov. Sununu Orders New Hampshire Liquor Stores To Remove Russian Spirits From Shelves

    ‘This morning I signed an Executive Order instructing @nhliquorwine outlets to begin removing Russian-made and Russian-branded spirits from our liquor and wine outlets until further notice.’

    https://boston.cbslocal.com/2022/02/26/gov-sununu-orders-new-hampshire-liquor-stores-emove-russian-spirits/

    Shades of banning Cuban cigars back in the day. No word on how he’ll handle any Russian oil refined into gasoline in the governor’s limo or any traces in NH heating oil. Leave that bugaboo to Joe.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  116. I, for one, am grateful that three Democratic Presidents, Clinton, Obama, and now Biden, are still following (more or less) Reagan doctrine in regard to Russia. It makes me more sanguine for America’s future.

    And doubly grateful that the corrupt criminal traitor Trump was as incompetent as his mouth was incontinent.

    nk (1d9030)

  117. A coup is when the military seizes power. That didn’t happen in 2014.

    What DID happen is below. It’s important to note that the current leader of Ukraine was fairly elected in 2019.

    In November 2013, a wave of large-scale protests (known as Euromaidan) erupted in response to President Yanukovych’s refusal to sign a political association and free trade agreement with the European Union (EU) at a meeting of the Eastern Partnership in Vilnius in Lithuania. These protests continued for months. In February 2014, clashes between the protestors and the Berkut (special riot police) became violent, and resulted in the deaths of nearly 130 people, including 18 police officers.[28] On February 21, an agreement between President Yanukovych and the leaders of the parliamentary opposition was signed that called for early elections and the formation of an interim unity government. The following day, Yanukovych fled from the capital ahead of an impeachment vote.[29] The protesters proceeded to take control of the capital buildings. On the same day, the parliament declared that Yanukovych was relieved of duty in a 328-to-0 vote (out of the Rada’s 450 members).[30][31][32]

    Yanukovych said that this vote was illegal and possibly coerced, and asked the Russian Federation for assistance.[33] Russia considered the overthrow of Yanukovych to be an illegal coup, and did not recognize the interim government. Widespread protests, both in favor of and against the revolution, occurred in the eastern and southern regions of Ukraine, where Yanukovych previously received strong support in the 2010 presidential election. These protests escalated, resulting in a Russian military intervention[34][35] and the establishment of the self-proclaimed proto-states Donetsk and Luhansk.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  118. It’s really wierd how mainstream white supremacy has become in the GOP. Even the people who don’t embrace seem to easily overlook it.

    Having been gerrymandered into Maxine Waters’ district for a decade, I have to say there’s lots of things that get overlooked. Terrible woman.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  119. Do we accept that countries in our sphere of influence will have a military alliance with foreign great powers? Cuba agreed to host the Soviet missiles, so why did we complain?

    Another bogus Putin-friendly comparison. First-strike ballistic nuclear missiles on the communist island of Cuba was an offensive threat against the USA. NATO is a defensive alliance. Over its 70 years, it never took or threatened to take one square inch of Russian territory.

    The protestors did not accept the terms and overthrew the government, which is a coup.

    Irrelevant about the protesters. Parliament cut a deal with Yanukovych but he ran out. Since he never presided under the agreement, any blame assigned to disagreeing protesters is hypothetical. The real blame here is with Yanukovych for undermining his legitimacy and then fleeing in lieu of risking prison.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  120. We are seeing more and more inter-racial romances, and marriages.

    The Second Gentleman is white.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  121. Does anyone doubt that if Putin fails in Ukraine that 1) Putin loses the game of thrones, and 2) Ukraine becomes a NATO country. Maybe Belarus, too.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  122. The West however is to blame for escalating the situation over many years by …….supporting the 2014 coup, which overthrew a democratically elected and nominally pro-Russian government.

    Did the West force Yanukovych to beat people on live TV in the middle of the street, or stripping them naked in the snow? And did the West order Yanukovych to commit mass shootings using snipers? And then did the West. force the Ukrainian Parliament vote 328 to 0 to remove Yanukovych? Did the West make Ukraine conduct several elections where Putinism and Russian aggression were rejected, over and over and over again?

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  123. @98. American foreign policy elites will never blame themselves for failures, but they are plain for all to see in the past year.

    Yep. But then, foreign service personnel excel at obfuscated-diplo-speak.

    “Well, if you ask me, sir, it’s double talk.” – ‘Tora! Tora! Tora!’ 1970

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  124. Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson is an in-law to Paul Ryan.

    nk (1d9030)

  125. For a little perspective, out of all our oil imports, Putin’s oil is 7% of the total. I’d rather have it be 0%, and the same for Venezuela and KSA, but our oil companies here are privately owned (except for the PDVSA oil that comes from 7-Elevens).

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  126. “There’s no sanction that’s immediate.” – Joe Biden

    Connoisseurs of Russian vodka in New Hampshire today would beg to differ, Mr. President.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  127. @128. For a little perspective, out of all our oil imports, Putin’s oil is 7% of the total.

    For a little clarity instead:

    U.S. nearly tripled imports of Russian oil in 2021

    Russia producers nearly tripled shipments of oil to the United States in 2021 – in 2020, the United States imported from Russia on average 76,000 barrels per day (bpd), while in 2021, that figure rose to 209,000 bpd, according to data from the Energy Information Administration (EIA) of the U.S. Department of Energy.

    https://globalenergyprize.org/en/2022/02/22/u-s-nearly-tripled-imports-of-russian-oil-in-2021/

    Do the math for dollar cost per barrel per day. And w/prices slewing from $70 to currently around $100/bbl., we’re literally helping to finance his invasion.

    And this is why Putin smiles.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  128. Continuing with Manafort, Marcy Wheeler mentions how Trump’s former campaign manager betrayed America to help Putin get he wanted in Ukraine.

    On August 2, 2016, Donald Trump’s campaign manager took a break from his campaign work for a secret meeting with his former employee, Konstantin Kilimnik. Kilimnik first pitched the meeting on 10:51AM on July 29 after meeting in person in Moscow with Viktor Yanukovych, explaining that, “It has to do about the future of [Yanukovych’s] country, and is quite interesting.” Paul Manafort accepted the meeting that same day, saying Tuesday was the best day for it. After Kilimnik returned to Ukraine on July 31, he told Manafort he needed two hours for the meeting and would arrive at JFK at 7:30 PM on August 2 for the meeting.

    At the meeting, Manafort and Kilimnik discussed three things. First, they discussed a plan to make “peace” in Ukraine by creating an autonomous region in Donbas and getting Yanukovych “elected” to head it. Manafort later told Mueller’s team that he cut the meeting short before Kilimnik asked him to get Trump to come out for the peace plan, though Mueller’s team argued and Amy Berman Jackson agreed that Manafort was lying about what happened at the meeting.

    After Rick Gates showed up (he came late), Manafort laid out for Kilimnik how the campaign planned to win Michigan, Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, and Minnesota.

    Finally, Kilimnik told Manafort how he could get back on the gravy train of Oleg Deripaska and the Party of Regions. Specifically, Kilimnik explained what Manafort would have to do to get Ukrainian oligarchs Rinat Akhmetov and Serhiy Lyovochkin to pay him money that Manafort claimed they owed him from past work. Eight days later, on August 10, Manafort — who was badly underwater and working for Trump for “free” — would tell his accountant to book $2.4M in income from those oligarchs, to be paid in November.

    Kilimnik is a Russian spy, indicted by Mueller. I have no doubt that Trump promised him a pardon if Manafort would lie and stonewall.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  129. France, enforcing sanctions on Russia, seizes ship in Channel
    ……….
    The “Baltic Leader” was headed to St. Petersburg but was diverted to the port of Boulogne-sur-Mer in northern France between 3 a.m. and 4 a.m. (0200-0300 GMT), Captain Veronique Magnin of the French Maritime Prefecture told Reuters.

    The United States Treasury Department has issued blocking sanctions against the vessel because, according to Treasury, it was owned by a subsidiary of Russian lender Promsvyazbank, one of the Russian entities hit by U.S. and European Union sanctions.

    The bank’s CEO, Pyotr Fradkov, is the son of Mikhail Fradkov, a former head of Russia’s foreign intelligence service, who also served as prime minister under Russian President Vladimir Putin. Pyotr Fradkov was himself included in the latest round of U.S. sanctions.
    ………
    The French economy ministry, in a statement, said the ship’s owner was Promsvyazbank subsidiary PZB Lizing, and that the ship was intercepted in enforcement of EU sanctions on the lender and its subsidiaries.
    ………
    The U.S. Treasury Department said Promsvyazbank was put under sanctions “for operating or having operated in the defense and related materiel and financial services sectors of the Russian Federation economy.” It was also targeted by EU sanctions.
    ##########

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  130. We absolutely need to cut off Russia’s energy exports and that is an ineluctable reality. It is the difference between the Russian economy in 1989 and the Russian economy in 2022. No matter how much the Sitzpinkler kick and scream.

    nk (1d9030)

  131. Kirk should have gone with “torturing infants for pleasure”

    steveg (e81d76)

  132. In other words, Marjorie Greene didn’t do her own research when she agreed to speak in front of a group of white nationalists.

    So, her basic explanation for joyfully appearing in front of a bunch of racist jackwads is that she’s an ignorant idiot surrounded by a horrible staff that did zero vetting (like even a Google search). Of course, she’s lying. But that doesn’t mean she’s not also an idiot.

    “Leader” McCarthy promised last November that he would restore the committee assignments that Pelosi stripped from her.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  133. Russia sells the US 20 million barrels a month

    steveg (e81d76)

  134. Seizure of oligarch family toys and assets is Mary Poppins sanctions, Rip.

    It has to be Tony Soprano sanctions to send an effective smack-the-snout-message:

    This is why you just sink ships and yachts:

    https://nypost.com/2022/02/25/russian-tank-maliciously-crushes-civilian-car-with-driver-inside/

    Fortunately the driver survived. His car didn’t- because it got ‘sanctioned,’ Tony Soprano-style.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  135. And I will repeat myself: It’s the economy, comrades! American drillers and frackers cannot afford to drill and frack unless oil is above a certain price. Unless, of course, you want the American taxpayers to make up the difference with “price supports”. Do you?

    nk (1d9030)

  136. EU Leaders Weigh Cutting Russia Out of Global Payment System Swift
    ……..
    Senior German officials, including one directly involved in drafting sanctions for the government, said Berlin’s position has shifted in recent days and it now considers cutting Russia off from Swift as a potential measure that could be adopted in the next rounds of sanctions against the Kremlin. Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi told Mr. Zelensky in a phone call on Saturday that Italy supports cutting off Russia from Swift, according to an Italian government official.
    ……..
    A senior Austrian official said that EU governments were debating two additional measures for the next round of sanctions against Moscow: cutting the country off from Swift and banning all Russian aircraft from EU airspace. Hungary’s government, also previously reluctant, said Saturday it wouldn’t block a Swift cutoff.
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  137. The last I heard of Tony Soprano, the bellboy who found him dead in his hotel room in Rome stole his $20,000 Rolex off his dead body.

    (I watched the first half hour or so of that ridiculous series. And the last five minutes — that could was not possible to avoid. Good grief! There, right there, you have why a real gangster like Vlad “Short Biggy” Putin would not respect America.)

    nk (1d9030)

  138. Germany to send anti-tank weapons to Ukraine
    In a significant shift, the German government said Saturday it will send weapons and other supplies directly to Ukraine and supports some restrictions of the SWIFT global banking system for Russia.

    Germany’s chancellery announced it will send 1,000 anti-tank weapons and 500 “Stinger” surface-to-air missiles to Ukraine “as quickly as possible.”
    ………..
    In addition, Germany will send 14 armored vehicles and up to 10,000 tons of fuel to Ukraine.
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  139. Kinzinger confirmed himself as principled man. An idiot. But principled.
    Adam “Make Ukraine a no fly zone” Kinzinger. FFS.
    I’m glad he isn’t in charge of anything and no one should listen to him on anything again, even it it is an agreeable statement.
    Someone should check his stock portfolio for Lockheed and Raytheon. At least that would give an explanation that favors greed over diminished mental capacity.

    steveg (e81d76)

  140. The last I heard of Tony Soprano is that he’s a fictional TeeVee character.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  141. According to Reuters, estimates put the break-even point for fracking at around $50 per barrel, but other estimates put it as low as $30 per barrel.

    steveg (e81d76)

  142. Even the Cubs won the World Series while Obama was President. Trump was

    …fortunate over 100,000 Cubs die hards in the Midwest and Rust Belt sold their souls during that Game 7 rain delay. There are vigs on prayers.

    urbanleftbehind (c073c9)

  143. People say the Cosby Show (80s version) paved the way for Obama, as did Roseanne for the MAGA presidency, but I say the Sopranos played a far greater contribution to the latter, though I did hear that there could never be a 2nd Giuliani or even a Christie across the Hudson because their voters are either dead or in Florida.

    urbanleftbehind (c073c9)

  144. Ukraine is one thing, the terrorism in Ottawa continues….

    The trucks have left Ottawa, but ‘phantom honking’ lingers for many downtown

    https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/convoy-protest-phantom-honking-1.6363104

    Obudman (893091)

  145. Not saying there are corrupt Ukrainians, well, yes I am, but someone should be sent to keep an eye of the inventory of those German weapons.

    steveg (e81d76)

  146. @48. For those that say that we should still appreciate Putin’s tactics, drawing analogy to another evil like Pearl Harbor, I think you miss the lesson.

    WADR, AJ, setting street level emotion aside, you may be missing the lesson point from a professional’s POV:

    “While the air assault on [December 7, 1941] was, in the words of Pacific Fleet commander Admiral Husband E. Kimmel, a “beautifully planned and executed military maneuver,” it was the Japanese preparations that allowed the Pearl Harbor Task Force, the Kido Butai, to approach Hawaii undetected. Without the detailed planning and nearly flawless execution of the preliminaries, the attack would have never succeeded.

    https://www.usni.org/magazines/naval-history-magazine/2009/december/how-japanese-did-it

    Kimmel certainly would know as he was there and it was his command that was struck. As to ‘a punch in the nose,’ well, he lost his command, his professional reputation and made to carry the blame for the rest of his life. Consider this from his bio: ‘In 1994 Kimmel’s family, including his grandson, South Carolina broadcaster Manning Kimmel IV, attempted for the third time to have Kimmel’s four-star rank reinstated. President Bill Clinton denied the request, as had Presidents Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan. A 1995 Pentagon study concluded other high-ranking officers were also responsible for the failure at Pearl Harbor, but did not exonerate Kimmel. In a 1964 interview, Admiral Chester Nimitz, who took over as commander of the Pacific Fleet three weeks after the attack, concluded that, “It was God’s mercy that our fleet was in Pearl Harbor on December 7.” If Kimmel “[had] had advance notice that the Japanese were coming, he most probably would have tried to intercept them. With the difference in speed between Kimmel’s battleships and the faster Japanese carriers, the former could not have come within rifle range of the enemy’s flattops. As a result, we would have lost many ships in deep water and also thousands more in lives.” Instead, at Pearl Harbor, the crews were easily rescued, and six of eight front-line battleships ultimately raised. This was also the assessment of Joseph Rochefort, head of the US Navy’s Station HYPO, who remarked the attack was cheap at the price. On May 25, 1999, the United States Senate, by a vote of 52–47, passed a non-binding resolution to exonerate Kimmel and Short and requested that the President of the United States posthumously restore both men to full rank. Senator Strom Thurmond, one of the sponsors of the resolution, called Kimmel and Short “the two final victims of Pearl Harbor.” The Senate enquiry in 2000 issued a lengthy exoneration of Kimmel’s conduct. President Clinton did not act on the resolution, nor have any of his successors.” – source,
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Husband_E._Kimmel

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  147. Ukraine posed no strategic threat to Russia, except for it embracing western values of liberalism.

    And there it is. “Embracing values of liberalism” is what causes thugs and dictators to quake in their boots. If this thinking takes root and spreads within the masses, the house of cards is instantly threatened. And the only option for these little dictators is to clamp down on the citizenry with the might of the military behind them.

    Dana (5395f9)

  148. @143. Capone sanctions. Gotti sanctions. Pick your poison.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  149. It made my head hurt when I listened to MTG make her excuses for speaking at the white nationalist conference. She just confirmied that she is a liar, through and through. Here’s the thing: If I, a nobody and of no political consequence or influence, knows precisely who Nick Fuentes is and what he stands for, then you know that she and her staff do as well. What a disgusting person. But more importantly, she is a MAGA queen and the masses love her. And Trump loves her too. This *is* today’s Republican Party.

    So, her basic explanation for joyfully appearing in front of a bunch of racist jackwads is that she’s an ignorant idiot surrounded by a horrible staff that did zero vetting (like even a Google search). Of course, she’s lying. But that doesn’t mean she’s not also an idiot.

    Dana (5395f9)

  150. The good thing about Wemple is that he skewers CNN/MSNBC as much as FoxNews. His latest hits the latter.

    In November 2019, Carlson was discussing the impeachment of President Donald Trump, which involved U.S. military aid to Ukraine meant to assist in its fight with Russia in Crimea and the country’s east. “Why do I care what is going on in the conflict between Ukraine and Russia?” Carlson asked. “And I’m serious. Why do I care? Why shouldn’t I root for Russia? Which I am.”

    Just before that show concluded, Carlson issued a retraction: “Earlier in the show, I noted that I was rooting for Russia in the contest between Russia and Ukraine. Of course, I’m joking. I’m only rooting for America.” Several days later, however, he clarified where his allegiances stood: “I don’t think that we should be at war with Russia. And I think we should probably take the side of Russia if we have to choose between Russia and Ukraine. That is my view,” said Carlson.

    Lest there be any doubt about who Carlson was rooting for until Putin’s latest evil made his stance untenable. It was all well and good until the Russian bully’s missiles started hitting real victims.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  151. We are seeing more and more inter-racial romances, and marriages. Paul Ryan had a serious relationship in college with a black woman (who still thought well of him years later). Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson is married to a white doctor (and they have two children together).

    And then there are the relationships that draw less attention. The current Seattle mayor, Bruce Harrell, is the child of a Japanese-American mother and a black father. Congresswoman Marilyn Strickland, who represents Washington’s 10th district, is the child of a Korean mother and a black father. (Both are relative moderates in the Democratic Party.)

    The increasing number of people of mixed race will make it harder, long term, for demagogues to divide us by race. As, more and more, we make love, not war.

    This is a great observation. And I think this is the only way to put the final nail in the coffin. Of course, there will always be remnants, but overall this will be what breaks the back of the demagogues. My parents married in the mid-1950s when “mixed” marriages were frowned upon. I recently asked my dad if he was ever worried or concerned about marrying a Native American during the societally restrictive time. He said, no, and that he never even thought about it. I’m glad to see that same unencumbered thinking manifested in my own adult kids.

    Dana (5395f9)

  152. @150. Exactly, Dana. That’s what was taking root in Alexander Dubcek’s Czechoslovakia back in 1968 as the ‘Prague Spring’ began to flower. Stiff-suited Brezhnev wasn’t tolerating any of it, fearing it would spread to other satellite states so he ha the tanks roll into Prague in August, 1968 to put an end to it.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warsaw_Pact_invasion_of_Czechoslovakia#:~:text=The%20Warsaw%20Pact%20invasion%20of%20Czechoslovakia%2C%20officially%20known,Hungary%29%20on%20the%20night%20of%2020%E2%80%9321%20August%201968.

    Had just moved to Europe that August when it occurred. Vividly recall streets empty; people worried where it would stop; military on stand-by; businesses uncertain– and this was in London. Eye-opening experience. No CNN, no cable news… just crackling radio reports on BBC and AFR.

    History rhymes.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  153. I, for one, am grateful that three Democratic Presidents, Clinton, Obama, and now Biden, are still following (more or less) Reagan doctrine in regard to Russia.

    2 of your 3 specifically and explicitly rejected Reaganism towards Russia. (“The 1980’s called…”, “I’ll have more flexibility after the election.”

    SaveFarris (068442)

  154. @154. Rip, the hard ‘incursion’ has been less than 72 hours in progress. It still takes 8 days to fly people to the moon and back. Ukraine is the size of Texas. Probe, plan, regroup and then they’ll press on w/t optimum way forward. Figure 60 days to secure, install the puppet government then back to Moscow for the May Day parade. And a Ukraine Resistance to plague the puppet regime for years to come.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  155. I see DCSCA continues to be wedded to the genius theory of autocrats. Here’s a rebuttal.

    https://samf.substack.com/p/a-reckless-gamble?utm_source=url

    Appalled (69bf59)

  156. Early Signs That Russia Has Bitten Off More Than It Can Chew in Ukraine
    Russia invaded Ukraine from three sides on Wednesday night Eastern time, and as of now, early afternoon Saturday, the Russian army has yet to seize any Ukrainian cities.

    This morning, a senior defense official at the Pentagon briefed reporters and declared, “We continue to believe, based on what we have observed, that this resistance is greater than what the Russians expected and we have indications that the Russians are increasingly frustrated by their lack of momentum over the last 24 hours particularly in the north parts of Ukraine… As of this morning we have no indication still that the Russian military has taken control over any cities. As of this morning we still believe that Russia has yet to achieve air superiority. Ukrainian air defenses including aircraft do continue to be operable and continue to engage and deny access to Russian aircraft in places over the country.”
    ……..
    ……..(T)here are some intriguing anecdotes of Ukrainians hitting Russian supply columns and videos of Russian tanks running out of fuel. (It turns out supply chain problems are just everywhere these days!)

    Russia’s got 170,000 troops, tons of armor, artillery, warplanes, cruise missiles, the works… they may well eventually take Kyiv, particularly if they’re willing to destroy it to claim it. But right now, roughly 44 million Ukrainians hate their guts and want to kill them. The U.S. is sending more Javelin anti-tank missiles, the Germans are sending both Javelins and Stinger surface-to-air missiles.
    ……….
    ……. Any Russian-backed Ukrainian puppet government is likely to be vehemently rejected by the Ukrainian people. Russian forces will find it difficult to go out on patrol when every citizen’s got a rifle and every grandma on every street corner is handing them sunflower seeds, telling them they are going to be fertilizer soon.
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  157. Good to know. Exxon, BP and Shell buys oil from Russia.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  158. Setting emotionalism aside, it helps to know the players in the game:

    Corruption in Ukraine

    Corruption is widespread in Ukrainian society. In 2012 Ernst & Young put Ukraine among the three most-corrupt nations of the world—alongside Colombia and Brazil. In 2015 The Guardian called Ukraine “the most corrupt nation in Europe”. According to a poll conducted by Ernst & Young in 2017, experts considered Ukraine to be the ninth-most corrupt nation in the world. According to the Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index, Ukraine ranked 117th out of 180 countries in 2020, ranking the second lowest in Europe, after Russia. [That puts them down in a league w/Zambia, Mexico, Nepal, Bolivia, Kenya, Pakistan…]

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corruption_in_Ukraine

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  159. 154. Rip, the hard ‘incursion’ has been less than 72 hours in progress.

    Im sure you will be cheering them all the way.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  160. @161. Back in the day Exxon ‘put a tiger in your tank’– these days, it a bear. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  161. 163. Tony Soprano sanctions, dear.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  162. “Setting emotionalism aside, it helps to know the players in the game”

    Glad to see noted corruption free country Russia has stepped in to clean house.

    Davethulhu (43e002)

  163. @162. Postscript. Little wonder it drew interests from the son of’ The Big Guy’… Hunter Biden.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  164. Good to know. Exxon, BP and Shell buys oil from Russia.

    Halliburton is there, too:

    Halliburton Eurasia comprises Russia, Ukraine, Caspian West and Caspian East. This large area presents challenges that are quite diverse, including shallow water, environmentally sensitive North Caspian with deep, high pressure, H2S/CO2 oil wells; mature oil fields in Kazakhstan and Siberia; high flowrate gas fields in Northern Siberia, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan; and extreme weather conditions in the large part of the Eurasia region.

    https://jobs.halliburton.com/content/eurasia/?locale=en_US

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  165. India projected to be world’s third-largest consumer of oil in 2022
    India is the worlds 2nd largest consumer of coal
    India is currently 14th in Natural gas consumption, but its use of Natural Gas is projected to grow to 3X the current rate

    https://www.business-standard.com/article/current-affairs/india-s-gas-consumption-to-jump-more-than-3-times-by-2030-gail-director-121112500902_1.html

    India and China both use tremendous amounts of Russian Coal, oil, and natural gas

    steveg (e81d76)

  166. Putin’s miscalculation
    ………
    Putin, a one-time KGB operative who in 2004 said “there is no such thing as a former KGB man,” has made clear that he lives in a world of the past. The world that existed before the end of the Cold War, a world in which the territories of the former Soviet Union, potentially even the countries of the former Warsaw Pact, are run out of Moscow. A world he is trying to rebuild today.

    But the USSR is not Russia, and when you live in the past, you lose touch with the present.
    …….
    It’s the classic mistake of every tyrant: Surround yourself only with sycophants, suck-ups and yes-men, and you never get a reality check in your echo chamber. Eliminate dissenting politicians, and you assume that means you’ve eliminated dissent.
    ……..
    Perhaps Putin thought he’d roll into Kyiv the way the Taliban rolled into Kabul, meeting scant resistance from Ukrainians. He seems to have expected to be welcomed in by Russian-speaking Ukrainians as nostalgic for the Soviet heydays as he is. It seems Putin expected Ukrainians to lay down their arms, and for their pro-Western and NATO President Volodymyr Zelenskiy to flee, making space for one of Moscow’s allies. The Kremlin could roll its tanks back to Russia, taking a sizeable chunk of Ukraine with them, and Putin could declare his bogus “peacekeeping” mission over after a few days. He would take some limited casualties, some painful but not devastating sanctions, and then it would be back to business as usual.
    ……..
    But Putin underestimated Ukraine. The country’s troops have resisted hard and have largely held their cities against a Russian attempt at blitzkrieg. Kyiv claims that its experienced, motivated soldiers have killed thousands of Russians, downed enemy planes and destroyed hundreds of armored vehicles and tanks.

    Putin also underestimated Zelenskiy.
    ………
    Ukraine now has a leader it can believe in, who is vowing to fight on against a military superpower. He’s a democratically elected president who wasn’t a cynical appointee of some other country, who wasn’t someone seeking the presidency to enrich themselves.
    ………
    “We are here. We are in Kyiv. We are defending Ukraine,” Zelenskiy said in a video published on Telegram Friday night and shot in Kyiv. In the clip, he is surrounded by his Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal, along with Mikhail Podolyak, an adviser to the president’s chief of staff, Andriy Yermak, the head of the office of the president, and the head of the ruling party’s parliamentary faction, David Arakhamia.

    With that video, Zelenskiy told Ukrainians: We aren’t running, we’re fighting. Ukrainians are fighting
    ………
    ……… Putin expected Afghanistan in 2021. But he got Afghanistan in 1979. ……
    ………
    ……… How do you control a country of 44 million Ukrainians who suddenly have something to believe in? And how do you keep your own people on board?

    ………Ukrainians don’t have any misty-eyed Soviet nostalgia about what Putin is really offering. They know the model for his reforged USSR is based on oppression, murder and gangsterism.

    Russians, doped up as they are on RT and TASS and Rossiya 24, are also suddenly seeing their favorite singers, tennis players and actors speak up about what is now a hot war. They’re seeing photos of bombed apartment blocks, kindergartens, dead children. They’re seeing this isn’t going to be a walkover.

    There’s a genuine danger to Putin that he has greatly underestimated the breadth of opposition he could now face with a war against a people whom most Russians don’t see as an enemy. He’s not just facing metropolitan protesters. He’s also humiliated his spy chief in public, lost his oligarchs billions of dollars and could well have to deal with thousands of traumatized mothers. For a paranoid former spy, always alive to risks, he now appears extraordinarily confident that no one from this growing base of foes can threaten him.

    A Communist Party member of Russia’s State Duma, Mikhail Matveyev, broke ranks on Saturday. “I believe the war should be stopped immediately,” he tweeted in Russian. “Voting for the recognition of the [breakaway Luhansk and Donetsk republics], I voted for peace, not for war. For Russia to become a shield, so that Donbass is not bombed, not in favor of Kyiv being bombed.”
    ……..

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  167. when you live in the past, you lose touch with the present.
    …….

    Does this describe anyone here?

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  168. The Russian Army seems to be behaving fairly professionally in person to person encounter videos leaking out.
    They are polite to the old lady with the sunflower seeds, they laugh with the guy who offers a tow back to Russia to the APC waiting for fuel.
    The guy whose car got crushed begs to differ…

    steveg (e81d76)

  169. @159./ Appalled; appalling:

    Coca-Cola HBC Россия

    https://ru.coca-colahellenic.com/en/about-us/history

    Peddling Coca-Cola to Russians! Looking forward to every indignant American boycotting Coke beverages in solidarity in protest to back Ukraine. Perhaps that should be broached w/The Donald at CPAC tonight.

    Yellow and blue ribbons this time, Appalled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  170. The Brady/Belichick were winners; New England sucks.

    Figure it out, Appalled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  171. McDonald’s Faces Big Problem in East as Russia Mounts Invasion of Ukraine

    ‘The Ukraine-Russia crisis may have a significant financial impact on many U.S. companies, including the one that many global citizens view as the most quintessentially American: McDonald’s. Oil and gas prices have already increased over concerns supplies will be disrupted by Russian forces moving into separatist regions of Ukraine. Those troop deployments resulted in the White House now referring to the situation as an “invasion” on the part of Russia, and U.S. President Joe Biden has said Russian President Vladimir Putin’s actions would result in the U.S imposing severe sanctions against Russia. This would not be the first time Russia has taken action again the fast-food giant during a time of political crisis. When Russia invaded Ukraine’s Crimea region in 2014, the U.S. hit Moscow with sanctions. Putin’s regime responded by closing a dozen McDonald’s restaurants in Russia and ordered inspections of hundreds of other locations. Tempers flared again when Russia was accused of meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, and Russia fined 44 McDonald’s locations in Moscow for health code violations in what was seen by many as retaliation.

    According to data published by QSR magazine in 2018, an average McDonald’s restaurant makes around around $2.7 million annually in sales. The company hasn’t provided a recent count of restaurants within Russia, but Reuters reported in 2020 that McDonald’s had around 750 in the country with plans to expand to a total of 800. Should a significant number of those stores be targeted by the country’s government in the wake of U.S. sanctions, the fast-food empire could stand to lose millions of dollars. Crain’s Chicago Business wrote last week of the issues McDonald’s could face should the locations in Russia be subjected to punishment. It noted that the company had already looked to separate itself from its U.S. base by advertising that Russian stores get 98 percent of its supplies from local resources.

    “Putin likely would look for opportunities to hurt the U.S. wherever he can find them,” Joe Cahill of Crain’s Chicago Business wrote on February 18. “And McDonald’s Russian restaurants couldn’t be more conveniently located for the purpose. It’s not hard to imagine crowds stoked with nationalistic fervor storming those restaurants, or Kremlin apparatchiks ordering closures.”

    Another company that is viewed by many across the world as distinctly American has also addressed similar concerns. The Greece-based Coca-Cola HBC, the world’s third-largest Coca-Cola anchor bottler, just announced it already has a plan should Russia’s invasion in the Ukraine affect its business. The company, which has a large annual profit from Russian business, said on Tuesday that it could stockpile ingredients should there be any disruptions in Russia after Western countries threatened Moscow with new sanctions. “We have contingencies in place for all scenarios, including alternative sourcing, so that we can act swiftly to whatever happens,” Chief Executive Zoran Bogdanovic of Coca-Cola HBC told Reuters. Bogdanovic told the news agency that the company had learned from the 2014 Russian-Ukrainian conflict, saying Coca-Cola HBC would “ensure that we have the right level of stocks in our markets to avoid disruptions.”‘

    https://www.newsweek.com/mcdonalds-faces-big-problem-east-russia-mounts-invasion-ukraine-1681418

    Appalled; appalling: You want fries with that? 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  172. Russian army except for special forces is a conscript army who don’t know why they are there. Ukraine will be russia’s vietnam. Volunteers are starting to enter ukraine from the west. A trickle now ;but later?

    asset (928049)

  173. A Big Mac Boycott along w/Diet Coke?

    The Donald may have to choke on that one, too. New Hampshire may have pulled Russian booze off the shelves but Trump Vodka is still being sold in Israel.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  174. @172. when you live in the past, you lose touch with the present.…….Does this describe anyone here?

    Certainly not you, Rip:

    Edmund Burke (1729-1797) “Those who don’t know history are destined to repeat it.” – Edmund Burke (1729-1797) |

    “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” – George Santayana (1863-1952)

    “Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” – Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  175. More Putin war crimes:

    Russian artillery fire has struck a children’s hospital in Kyiv, killing one child and wounding two others and two adults, according to a local Ukrainian news outlet, TSN.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  176. Interesting thread here. I hope it’s true, but I don’t want to get optimistic.

    Intel from a Ukrainian officer about a meeting in Putin’s lair in Urals. Oligarchs convened there so no one would flee. Putin is furious, he thought that the whole war would be easy and everything would be done in 1-4 days.

    Russians didn’t have a tactical plan. The war costs about $20 bln/day. There are rockets for 3-4 days at most, they use them sparingly. They lack weapons, the Tula and 2 Rotenberg plants can’t physically fulfil the orders for weapons. Rifles and ammo are the most they can do.

    The next Russian weapons can be produced in 3-4 months – if even that. They have no raw materials. What was previously supplied mainly from Slovenia, Finland and Germany is now cut off.

    If Ukraine manages to hold the Russians off for 10 days, then the Russians will have to enter negotiations. Because they have no money, weapons, or resources. Nevertheless, they are indifferent about the sanctions.

    Alpha Spec Ops have been near Kyiv since the 18th February. The goal was to take Kyiv and instal a puppet regime. They are preparing provocations against innocent civilians – women and children – to sow panic. This is their trump card.

    Russia’s whole plan relies on panic – that the civilians and armed forces surrender and Zelensky flees. They expect Kharkiv to surrender first so the other cities would follow suit to avoid bloodshed. The Russians are in shock of the fierce resistance they have encountered.

    The Ukrainians must avoid panic! The missile strikes are for intimidation, the Russians fire them at random to “accidentally” hit residential buildings to make the attack look larger than it really is. Ukraine must stay strong and we must provide assistance!

    Spread this information so the world would realise how important it is to assist Ukraine right now and without hesitation! It is difficult for Russia, but it is difficult for Ukraine as well if the West does not provide meaningul support!

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  177. Great message from the actual winner of the Belarusian presidential election.

    Lukashenka committed treason – he made our country a participant in the invasion of Ukraine. So I declared myself as the national leader of Belarus to protect the sovereignty & independence of our country, represent it in security negotiations & crisis management in the region.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  178. Here’s why American fast-food chains are worried about the conflict in Ukraine

    ‘US fast-food chains are bracing for a sales hit as the Russia-Ukraine conflict unfurls. In commentary published alongside their annual reports this week, the fast-food giants behind Burger King and KFC addressed concerns around the conflict and said that instability in the area could lead to restaurant closures and loss of sales. Moreover, sanctions from Western nations could make it harder for the companies to do business in Russia or make them a target for retaliation from Putin, they said.

    There’s a lot at stake for McDonald’s, KFC, and Burger King who are among the major global fast-food chains that have over the past decade been growing at a rapid rate in Russia, and where they have thousands of outlets between them.

    Previous experience suggests that the chains have reason to be concerned. When the US hit Moscow with sanctions in response to Russia’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimea region in 2014, Russian President Vladimir Putin quickly closed a series of McDonald’s restaurants in Moscow, citing “sanitary violations.” At the time, critics questioned the motive behind the closures, with some suggesting it was a response to US and European sanctions.

    Yum! Brands, which owns KFC, and has more than 1,000 locations in Russia, counts the country as one of its top 10 markets. In a statement alongside its annual results, released this week, the company said that the Russia-Ukraine conflict could impact “macroeconomic conditions, give rise to regional instability and result in heightened economic sanctions from the US and the international community in a manner that adversely affects us.”

    US and other government sanctions could also restrict Yum!’s ability to do business with certain suppliers and prevent it moving money in and out of the country, it said. Sanctions announced by the US and Europe this week targeted Russia’s financial institutions among other areas. Burger King owner, American-Canadian Restaurant Brands International, which has around 550 locations in Russia, echoed those sentiments in its own annual report, released on Wednesday. McDonald’s, which, according to Reuters, has around 750 locations in Russia, did not respond to Insider’s request for comment.’

    https://www.businessinsider.com/mcdonalds-burger-king-kfc-worried-about-the-conflict-in-ukraine-2022-2

    Will Americans stands in solidarity w/Ukraine and Boycott Burgers?!?!? An extra crispy situation, too. And OH NO, JOE: ICE CREAM MELTDOWN:

    Baskin Robbins, a classic U.S. brand, was founded by Irv Robbins and Burt Baskin in 1945. It opened its first location in Russia in 1988, and opened a factory in Moscow in 1996. Overall, Baskin Robbins has outlets in 127 Russian cities, with 320 locations — 15 percent of which are under the direct control of the company.

    Woe is Joe; just desserts.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  179. Here’s some appropriate property destruction, DC.

    Ukrainian civilians are now systematically burning abandoned Russian Army vehicles.

    This will multiply Russian Army permanent vehicle losses by double digit percent because any unguarded operational casualty will be burned.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  180. Marjorie Greene didn’t do her own research

    What was your first clue? There are a lot of folks at the top who get all their information from the shallowest sources. Not just Greene, but the BS artists on all sides. Harris is one.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  181. Adam “Make Ukraine a no fly zone” Kinzinger. FFS

    If you asked the US Air Force, the vote would be unanimous in favor.

    We’d have air superiority in a matter of hours. Might have to smash a few SAM sites in Belarus.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  182. At this point, all Ukraine has to do is hold the line for another couple of weeks, and maybe not even that, and they’ll have done what they needed to do to survive. Even if the Russians manage to take the cities they’re targeting, Ukrainians are going to be making them work for every inch of ground they manage to take, and Russia simply cannot sustain that kind of ops tempo without allied support.

    The Russian army aren’t scrubs, but their military has a sizable number of inexperienced conscripts, their equipment is outdated, and they don’t have the logistical capability to fight a slugfest with a determined opponent who hates their guts. The Ukrainians, at least right now, are looking at an even better outcome than Finland managed to get during the Winter War, when they only had to give up a small bit of their territory after killing tens of thousands of Soviets.

    Factory Working Orphan (2775f0)

  183. Henry Kissinger on Ukraine

    ‘The test is not absolute satisfaction but balanced dissatisfaction.’

    https://cnnbc.com/henry-kissinger-on-ukraine

    https://www.wsj.com/livecoverage/russia-ukraine-latest-news/card/My82x9RQ1nRIm3y2bnuK

    ______________

    Russian conductor pulls out of New York concerts after supporters of Ukraine protest

    Russian star conductor Valery Gergiev and pianist Denis Matsuev, both prominent supporters of Russian President Vladimir Putin, will no longer perform at New York City’s famed Carnegie Hall this weekend. They had been scheduled to appear there in three concerts this weekend with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra. No reason was given by Carnegie Hall for the artists’ departures, which were announced in a press release late Thursday afternoon. Conductor Yannick Nézet-Séguin will step in for Gergiev; a soloist to replace Matsuev has yet to be announced. Later, a Carnegie Hall spokesperson told NPR that the changes were due to “recent world events.” Activists who support Ukraine had been protesting their planned appearances in New York.’

    https://www.npr.org/2022/02/24/1082816024/supporters-ukraine-protest-valery-gergiev-new-york-concert

    Soured notes called the tune.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  184. Certainly not you, Rip:

    Edmund Burke (1729-1797) “Those who don’t know history are destined to repeat it.” – Edmund Burke (1729-1797) |

    “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.” – George Santayana (1863-1952)

    “Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” – Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

    I knew you were going to post these quotes-I’m surprised it took you so long. My post does describe:

    1) Putin

    2) Look in the mirror.

    DCSCA Is worried about B-R and KFC while Ukrainians are dying for their freedom and could give a sh*t.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  185. Factory Working Orphan @187-

    Your best post ever.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  186. @186. If you asked the US Air Force, the vote would be unanimous in favor.

    Uh, time for plane talk:

    To avoid accidental clash near Ukraine, U.S. weighs hotline with Russian military

    As Russia presses ahead with its Ukraine invasion, there is a growing risk of an inadvertent collision between U.S. and Russian forces in the area, former military officers say.

    The Biden administration has been working to set up a communication backchannel with the Russian military to prevent an accidental clash between U.S. and Russian forces along the Ukrainian border, as Moscow mounts a sweeping an attack across the country, according to two sources with knowledge of the discussions. Such an arrangement would allow officials from both countries to exchange information to ensure that Russian forces attacking Ukraine avoid crossing paths with U.S. forces operating nearby in Eastern Europe, including along the Polish border and the Black Sea, the sources said. Still, they said, while the administration has different options for a “deconfliction channel,” as the military calls it, with Russia, none of the options completely remove all risk to U.S. troops in the region.

    Some U.S. officials had reservations about setting up the communication channel before Russia launched its attack on Ukraine this week, fearing it could have been seen as tacitly accepting Moscow’s invasion, the sources said. The channel would focus on the risk of errant missile strikes and ensuring Russian and U.S. aircraft and warships operate in separate areas, the sources said.

    The communication channel could possibly operate between top U.S. military officer Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs, and his Russian counterpart, Chief of Russian General Staff Gen. Valery Gerasimov, and between the NATO supreme allied commander, U.S. Gen. Tod Wolters, and another top Russian officer, the sources said. Pentagon officials recently discussed possible communication channels with senior White House officials, one source with knowledge said.

    But it remains unclear if Russia will agree to the idea. On Friday, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg told NBC News in Brussels that he’s very concerned about deconfliction with Russia’s military and has spoken to NATO’s supreme allied commander about ensuring deconfliction channels, including in the Black Sea. In the Syrian conflict, where both U.S and Russian forces have operated, U.S. and Russian military officers set up a communication channel in 2015 designed to prevent collisions or accidental targeting of the other side’s forces. The channel was set up quickly after Russia began military action in Syria. The arrangement eventually included a 24-hour hotline and regular discussions between U.S. and Russian officers overseeing fighter aircraft. Despite deconfliction protocols in Syria, there were several incidents that threatened to trigger a crisis between the two superpowers.

    In November 2015, Turkey, a NATO member, shot down a Russian Su-24 fighter jet near the Turkish-Syrian border. The downing of the Russian warplane raised fears Moscow would retaliate against other NATO aircraft. And in 2018, hundreds of Russian mercenaries fighting for the Assad regime attacked U.S. special operations forces at a small outpost in eastern Syria. The Russian government said it had no control over the mercenaries, while the U.S. said it rebuffed the attack and inflicted heavy losses without suffering any casualties. The risk is very real,” said Ben Hodges, a retired U.S. lieutenant general who served as head of the U.S. Army in Europe from 2014 to 2017.

    In the “fog and friction of war,” even well-trained troops and pilots can make mistakes, said Hodges, now Pershing chair in strategic studies at the Center for European Policy Analysis think tank. Hodges said NATO aircraft in Eastern Europe and warships in the Black Sea likely had strict instructions to give Russian forces “a wide berth.”
    Russia’s assault on Ukraine and an expanding U.S. and NATO presence in Eastern Europe mean the two militaries now are operating in close proximity. From cyber attacks spilling over the border, navigation errors, botched missile strikes or collisions in the air or in the Black Sea, there are plenty of opportunities for mishaps, Hodges and other experts said. “The chance of a miscalculation or a military accident is not inconsequential,” said James Stavridis, a retired four-star admiral and former NATO supreme allied commander. “The Pentagon should be working to deconflict with Russia,” said Stavridis, now a NBC News national security contributor.

    Even before the Russian offensive in Ukraine, the Pentagon had reported numerous instances of Russian warplanes and ships undertaking what it calls risky and irresponsible actions. On Feb. 16, three U.S. Navy P-8 surveillance planes flying in international airspace over the Mediterranean had close encounters with Russian aircraft that the Navy called “unprofessional.”

    https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/national-security/avoid-accidental-clash-ukraine-us-weighs-hotline-russian-military-rcna16895

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  187. Breaking-
    EU, U.K., Canada, U.S. Plan to Cut Some Russian Banks From Swift
    The European Union, U.K., the U.S. and Canada announced powerful new sanctions plans, including kicking some Russian banks off the Swift financial network and taking measures to paralyze the activities of Russia’s central bank over the Kremlin’s attack on Ukraine.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  188. The new republicans don’t belong to the racist clubs of the establishment republicans. The new republicans belong to the shooting range, 4×4 truck, jet ski, snowmobile, hunting and fishing don’t eff with me club. We don’t care about color or sex. Just the right to be free. The establishment goons will be gone soon. Hallelujah.

    mg (8cbc69)

  189. But it remains unclear if Russia will agree to the idea.

    NATO should make clear that all responsibility will fall on the Russians.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  190. We don’t care about color or sex.

    Comedy gold!

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  191. But it remains unclear if Russia will agree to the idea.

    NATO should make clear that all responsibility will fall on the Russians, because it’s their war.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  192. @189. Pfft.

    “You might very well think that. I could not possibly comment.” – Francis Urquhart [Ian Richardson] ‘House Of Cards’ BBC TV, 1990

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  193. Top Weapons Companies Boast Ukraine-Russia Tensions Are a Boon for Business

    In calls with investors, Raytheon and Lockheed Martin boasted that the worsening conflict is helping profits.

    https://inthesetimes.com/article/ukraine-russia-raytheon-lockheed-martin-general-dynamics-weapons-industry

    Rip; your shilling is showing. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  194. Ukraine Response Exposes GOP Foreign Policy Divide
    ……..
    …….. (B)eyond criticizing Mr. Biden and broadly pushing for tougher sanctions against Russia, the GOP is divided on how to approach the crisis as it works to define a foreign-policy agenda following costly and unpopular wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the continued influence of Donald Trump.
    ……. .
    Some Republicans have gravitated toward the former president’s “America First” outlook limiting U.S. engagement abroad, while others say the Russian invasion demands American leadership as authoritarians across the globe seek to expand their power. Mr. Trump himself hasn’t articulated how he would have handled the current crisis differently from Mr. Biden, beyond claiming that it wouldn’t have happened on his watch.
    ………
    Democrats and some in the GOP said the Trump administration, which included Mr. Pompeo, never demonstrated resolve when it came to Russia and was too accommodating to Mr. Putin’s ambitions. In 2018, Mr. Trump stunned lawmakers of both parties when, standing beside Mr. Putin at a summit in Helsinki, he questioned the U.S. intelligence conclusion that Moscow meddled in the 2016 election. Mr. Trump also presented himself at times as a neutral peacemaker between Russia and Ukraine, a shift from the previous U.S. stance of advocating for Ukraine’s sovereignty.
    ………
    ……… J.D. Vance, an Ohio candidate for the U.S. Senate, said on a podcast, “I don’t really care what happens to Ukraine one way or the other.” ……. Mr. Vance, who days later issued a statement expressing sympathy for Ukrainians, …….
    ……….
    Sen. Josh Hawley (R., Mo.) earlier this month asked the Biden administration to drop support for Ukraine joining NATO, arguing it would draw attention from China, though he said the U.S. should help the country defend itself. “Our interest is not so strong, however, as to justify committing the United States to go to war with Russia over Ukraine’s fate,” he wrote in a letter to Secretary of State.

    Most Republican leaders have taken a more aggressive stance. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, during a phone call with the president this week, pressed for tougher sanctions and said the U.S. should provide weapons and intelligence to a Ukrainian insurgency.
    ……….
    Kevin Roberts, president of the conservative Heritage Foundation, said a policy debate can be healthy but added that Mr. Putin “understands there is a fissure on the American right” that makes it difficult for Republicans to speak in one voice, hindering the U.S. response. “Putin is counting on that,” he said.
    ……….
    ………. At a GOP foreign-policy forum in Iowa this week, Sen. Joni Ernst (R., Iowa), a veteran, made the case against isolationism. “We have been in the tradition of America First, and that was something that the last administration under President Trump really fostered. But I don’t believe it should be America alone,” she said.

    “We are Americans. America comes first,” she added. “But we need to engage around the globe. We do have standing around the world, and we are all interconnected through economics and trade.”
    ##########

    J.D. Vance, an Ohio candidate for the U.S. Senate, said on a podcast, “I don’t really care what happens to Ukraine one way or the other.” ……. Mr. Vance, who days later issued a statement expressing sympathy for Ukrainians,

    Always take the first comments by a politician as the truth of what they believe. Any “apology” or “clarification” is simply damage control and is the opposite of what they believe. Vance has no more sympathy for Ukraine than he does for a horse fly.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  195. @198-

    War is always good for business, no matter what side you’re on.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  196. Remember when everyone was focused on 7.5% inflation, $5/gal., gas, $5 /lb., hamburger, masks and Covid… last week?!

    … and Biden smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  197. But that’s where we’re at. Americans cannot even come together to call out authoritarian evil.

    I disagree. Most of us can. The news shows need controversy though, and people like Trump know that they get covered only when they are controversial.

    Kevin M (38e250) — 2/26/2022 @ 10:06 am

    I’d disagree even further. I think almost all of us can. But people want to take sides and very much need to believe that the “other” side is evil. This more than any other issue recently seems to be an example of people really needing to imagine the intentions of everyone else.

    I keep thinking we’ve hit maximum virtue signaling but that dial seems to be endless.

    frosty (d96384)

  198. Russian military vehicles run out of fuel:

    The Ukrainian asks the Russians, who have run out of fuel, if they want him to tow them back to Russia. They all laugh.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  199. According to BBC World News, the Russian media is pushing a ridiculous line of propaganda about how the Ukrainian government is full of Nazis, how the Ukrainian people are begging for help and how ethnic Russians are being killed in the streets.

    So, when the soldiers get there, they are dumbfounded by the obvious popular resistance. They never expected to be the bad guys.

    I’m sure that some of these conflicts are offering no quarter and some of them are simply ironic, like the broken down vehicles. Putin must be pissed.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  200. Residents of Ichnya, Chernihov oblast get Russian tanks to turn around simply by standing in the road.

    I’m read that many of the Russian soldiers are conscripts who were shocked to find themselves on the front lines, contrary to the Russian constitution. Some of them, it seems, do not want to be killing Ukrainians.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  201. Question: Since there is zero chance that the US, or NATO, decides to help Ukraine, what happens if a lone member does? Poland, say, feeling that defense in Ukraine makes more sense than defense in Warsaw. What happens if Putin, frustrated by the lack of victory, orders fuel-air bombs used in Kyiv? Or nerve gas?

    Kevin M (38e250)

  202. @202, we don’t need to imagine the reactions of Bannon, Flynn, Trump, Owen’s, Carlson, or the auditorium of GOP Nazi-sympathizers AFPAC that cheered Kirk’s praise of Putin. We can also assume MAGA darling MTG doesn’t have much issue with it since she follows that speech without so much as a hint of criticism.

    But by all means keep pretending the problem isn’t there.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  203. @206, A nato member sending troops to Ukraine to fight Russian troops would be a major escalation and could lead to all our war between NATO and Russia.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  204. @87 FWO, I really hope you’re right. I want the US to do everything we can short of direct conflict with Russian military. Definitely including taking as many UKE refugees as we need for as long as we need. Might help the the ppl fighting if they knew their loved ones and countrymen were well cared for.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  205. @166. Meh. Like Capone did to Moran. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  206. @kevin@206 We and the NATO nations are sending help in the form of weapons, money, supplies (probably intel). What we aren’t doing is sending people.

    Nic (896fdf)

  207. Radegunda,

    I also read that young Russian soldiers are upset that they don’t know who to shoot because the Ukrainians look just like them (Russians).

    Dana (5395f9)

  208. With a 70% approval rating for the scumbag Putin, the russian people remind me of the obama sheep.

    mg (8cbc69)

  209. @206. Since there is zero chance that the US, or NATO, decides to help Ukraine…

    Depends on how you choose to define “help” Kevin– checked this morning, Germany was still a NATO member:

    In a major shift, Germany will send weapons to Ukraine

    In a significant shift, the German government said Saturday it will send weapons and other supplies directly to Ukraine and supports some restrictions of the SWIFT global banking system for Russia. IENNA — In a significant shift, the German government said Saturday it will send weapons and other supplies directly to Ukraine, which is fighting to keep Russia from invading its capital city. Germany is also ready to also support some restrictions of the SWIFT global banking system for Russia, officials said. Germany’s chancellery announced Saturday evening that it will send 1,000 anti-tank weapons and 500 “Stinger” surface-to-air missiles to Ukraine “as quickly as possible.”

    “The Russian invasion of Ukraine marks a turning point. It threatens our entire post-war order,” German Chancellor Olaf Scholz said in a statement. “In this situation, it is our duty to help Ukraine, to the best of our ability, to defend itself against Vladimir Putin’s invading army.”

    The news came shortly after the German economy and climate ministry said in a Saturday evening statement that Germany is allowing the Netherlands to ship 400 German-made anti-tank weapons to Ukraine. The government has also approved the shipment of 9 D-30 howitzers and ammunition originally from Estonia. Germany had long stuck to a policy of not exporting deadly weapons to conflict zones, including Ukraine. As recently as Friday, government officials said they would abide by that policy.

    But the country — which has the strongest economy in the 27-nation European Union — has faced criticism from Ukrainian officials and other allies that it has not acted decisively enough to help Ukraine fend off the Russian invasion. Previously, Germany contributed 5,000 helmets to Ukraine’s defense, a move that was mocked on Twitter.

    Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy welcomed the news of weapons shipments, posting praise for Scholz on Twitter: “Keep it up, Chancellor @OlafScholz! Anti-war coalition in action!” In addition, the German economy and climate ministry said Saturday that Germany will send 14 armored vehicles and up to 10,000 tons of fuel to Ukraine.

    “After Russia’s shameless attack, Ukraine must be able to defend itself,” Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock and Economy Minister Robert Habeck said in a statement. “The federal government is therefore supporting Ukraine in providing urgently needed material.” And after earlier opposing the prospect of banning Russia from the SWIFT global financial system, Baerbock and Habeck said that Germany supports a “targeted and functional restriction” of SWIFT.

    What is needed is a strategy to “limit the collateral damage of decoupling from SWIFT in such a way that it affects the right people,” Baerbock and Habeck said.

    Separately on Saturday, the United States announced $350 million in aid to Ukraine, totaling $1 billion in security assistance since President Joe Biden took office. The additional aid includes “anti-armor, small arms and various munitions, body armor and related equipment,” said John Kirby, the Pentagon press secretary. A senior defense official said the assistance, which includes Javelin anti-tank weapons, will be delivered to Ukraine in phases and as soon as possible. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal planning.

    Other nations pledged military aid. Italy earlier this week announced it will send nonlethal military equipment such as de-mining equipment and protective devices for soldiers. France announced that requests for equipment by Ukraine are under study. Before the invasion, France supplied some 100 million euros in arms to Ukraine, including short-range defensive missiles, Herve Grandjean, spokesman for the ministry of the armies, said this week.’

    https://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/major-shift-germany-send-weapons-ukraine-83131834

    Ironic. This war they send into Ukraine, German armor, weapons and fuel to help.

    _______

    @208. A nato member sending troops to Ukraine to fight Russian troops would be a major escalation and could lead to all our war between NATO and Russia.

    Escalation? German armor, fuel and Stingers, maybe not so much, eh?! 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  210. What we aren’t doing is sending people.

    Did you think I did not know that? SO, what do we do when more interested parties break ranks? We may be comfortable in our homes 8,000 miles away, but the Poles know they are next. Suppose they’d prefer to fight now, in Ukraine, instead of next year near their homes?

    Kevin M (38e250)

  211. I also read that young Russian soldiers are upset that they don’t know who to shoot because the Ukrainians look just like them (Russians).

    Amazing, isn’t it? It’s too bad they don’t have that problem in Chicago. :-/

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  212. could lead to all out war between NATO and Russia.

    It’s coming anyway.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  213. Last time German armor rolled into Ukraine it wasn’t so warmly welcomed.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  214. With a 70% approval rating for the scumbag Putin

    As reported by the Putin Network.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  215. Trump about to speak at CPAC.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  216. Last time German armor rolled into Ukraine it wasn’t so warmly welcomed.

    That’s actually not true. Admittedly the Germans rapidly wore out their welcome, but the Ukrainians thought that ANYONE had to be better than Stalin who had killed millions of Ukrainians a few years earlier. Hitler proved them wrong, but it wasn’t obvious going in.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  217. @kevin@215 No, I think you do know, but your statement was very imprecise. I don’t want what people are doing to be disregarded and I spend a lot of time dealing with people who often disregard everything being done to help them because one exact thing that they want but aren’t going to get isn’t being done.

    And I don’t know what would happen, possibly nuclear war possibly not, though at very least Russia could probably try to use it as a lever to try to get Poland expelled from NATO. Maybe not this year or next, but some time when some European country wants some new energy deal or some such.

    Nic (896fdf)

  218. @221. It sort of is… but like the house guest who comes for a week and stays for a year.

    he Nazi occupation of Soviet Ukraine

    The surprise German invasion of the U.S.S.R. began on June 22, 1941. The Soviets, during their hasty retreat, shot their political prisoners and, whenever possible, evacuated personnel, dismantled and removed industrial plants, and conducted a scorched-earth policy—blowing up buildings and installations, destroying crops and food reserves, and flooding mines. Almost four million people were evacuated east of the Urals for the duration of the war. The Germans moved swiftly, however, and by the end of November virtually all of Ukraine was under their control.

    Initially, the Germans were greeted as liberators by some of the Ukrainian populace. In Galicia especially, there had long been a widespread belief that Germany, as the avowed enemy of Poland and the U.S.S.R., was the Ukrainians’ natural ally for the attainment of their independence. The illusion was quickly shattered.

    https://www.britannica.com/place/Ukraine/The-Nazi-occupation-of-Soviet-Ukraine

    _____

    Kissinger’s assessment on Ukraine [scroll up] quilled a while back is fairly good- particularly w/respect to their history. But he’s always been a split-the-difference guy.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  219. @217. It’s coming anyway.

    How deep is your bomb shelter?! 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  220. But people want to take sides and very much need to believe that the “other” side is evil.

    In some cases, the other is evil, and Putin’s evil is well documented. It’s not simply a matter of belief.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  221. @222. Nic- there’s maneuvering – political and military- going on. You’d likely know re- the hotline issue– NBC reported on and the ABC report on the shift w/t German decision to trickle in some ‘help.’ There’s probably a lot of clever covert types w/activities going on as well; moving in to ‘assess’ the situation first hand on the ground.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  222. JVW won’t like this, but what point exactly, Tulsi?

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  223. Did Trump express any support for the real victim, Ukraine? No. Did Trump express any sympathy for the Ukrainian people under attack? No.

    He just did at CPAC, Paul. Guess his timetable doesn’t fit w/yours.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  224. @DCSCA@226 No doubt there’s a lot of behind the scenes stuff going on that we don’t (and probably shouldn’t) know about. The SWIFT issue from yesterday was pretty clearly “Germans say no but it’s being worked on” which has moved today to “Germans kinda of say well I guess it might be necessary but we don’t really like it so maybe.”

    Nic (896fdf)

  225. Why do you keep going on and on about Trump!

    Donald Trump just offhandedly told CPAC that he will run for president again in 2024. No one seemed to notice. “We did it twice, and we’ll do it again. We’re going to be doing it again a third time.”

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  226. @227. Her hope is hopeless; Kevin’s right about it; he’s committed to it now; he’s not going.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  227. @229. Nic, yep. They sent- aka “allowed” those munitions to go in per ABC– by way of the Netherlands. Just enough to stay balanced on the bar.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  228. Trump just lied about his Infamous Call with Zelenskyy, where Trump falsely claimed that Zelenskyy said Trump had “done nothing wrong”.
    This is how it’s going to be. Again.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  229. First, Biden betrayed the Afghans to the Taliban. Now, he’s thrown Ukraine to the wolves

    As for Russia, its return to military power was enabled by Europeans buying Russian natural gas and oil and turning a blind eye to Putin’s increasingly despotic rule. Europeans told themselves a fairy story that Russia would liberalise.

    We had ample evidence that we were making a mistake.

    First, the Russian intervention in the Syrian civil war, which followed Barack Obama’s absurd declaration in 2013 that ‘America is not the world’s policeman’.

    Then came the Russian annexation of Crimea and the first Ukrainian war in 2014, to which the West responded with feeble sanctions.

    Joe Biden was Vice-President then. Has it slipped his mind how that played out?

    There was a brief interruption to this story of collective amnesia under President Donald Trump.

    Europeans were disgusted. But did Russia invade anywhere between 2017 and 2020?

    Unfortunately, despite grand claims that the Biden administration would be a transformative presidency on a par with Roosevelt’s, this has swiftly turned into a rerun of Jimmy Carter’s weak presidency, with added dementia.

    DOMESTICALLY the administration is in disarray with inflation higher than at any time since 1982, violent crime surging and the Southern border overwhelmed with illegal immigrants.

    The only thing that would have made Putin think twice was the presence in Ukraine of significant military hardware, but the Biden administration slowed deliveries of arms to Kyiv.

    Last year, it removed sanctions on companies building the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, designed by Russia and Germany to bypass Ukraine. What’s more, Biden discovered that China and Russia are hand in glove after he tried to get President Xi Jinping to dissuade Putin from invading Ukraine.

    The naivety would beggar belief if Biden was not manifestly in his second childhood.

    JF (e1156d)

  230. Remember how JFK kept contracting the arc of the ‘blockade’ [which is essentially an act of war to begin with until it is redefined as a ‘quarantine’] and let select ships through- going the extra mile to avoid direct confrontation and giving his ‘opponent’ time and not closing ways out off.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  231. whatabout putin loving nazi white supremacists??

    JF (e1156d)

  232. possibly nuclear war possibly not

    No superpower will launch a nuclear weapon at another superpower at any time in the future. There is no sufficient provocation other than someone else breaking this rule first.

    The Soviet Union collapsed, largely due to 40 years of economic sanctions and an insane arms race that we ran on credit and they tried to run on cash.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  233. (oops)

    … and still no nukes.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  234. @235: Little known is the fact that Castro wanted to launch one of those missiles, but was stopped by the Russians who wanted no part of a nuclear war.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  235. Any of you remember practice runs to the fallout shelters during the Cuban Missile Crisis?
    On the farm we had a deep root cellar… only worked for tornadoes.

    mg (8cbc69)

  236. Germany to send thousands of weapons to Ukraine in major reversal

    Germany will send 1,000 anti-tank weapons and 500 Stinger missiles to Ukraine, marking a complete reversal in Berlin’s restrictive arms export policy, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced Saturday.

    https://news.yahoo.com/germany-authorizes-weapons-ukraine-major-165303294.html

    Somebody put the Lugar to their heads. NATO? Joe? Let’s see who claims credit in daysd to come– and what it costs.

    Have A Nice Day. 🙂

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  237. Over at the Political Betting site, “Chameleon” has made the following claims:

    Russian airforce failing to to achieve air supremacy
    Whole convoys of Russian vehicles being abandoned due to a lack of fuel just days and tens of kms in.
    Support and light arms convoys being sent right into set defences with NLAWs
    Russian generals running low on rockets, despite supposedly having many stockpiled.
    The airforce killing a good portion of the VDV by either flying troop transporters into SAM defences, or right into the sea.
    Russia supposedly having no real battle plan and failing to get allied help.

    Some of these are surely disinfo, but there’s enough to point to a seriously dysfunctional command structure.

    (NLAWS are anti-tank, anti-personnel carrier missiles.)

    I have no way to verify any of these claims (and, of course, couldn’t tell you if I did), but they do seem to have some basis in fact. And some of the commenters at the site appear to have some knowledge of military intelligence.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  238. @240. Yes. We were 40 miles from NYC- a prime target; father stayed in the city on his job; mother was on the phone to him several times a day; she set up cots and canned goods in the basement and bracketed off a room area w/shelving and we slept down there for a few nights. She nervously chain-smoked for days, too; the neighbors came over to watch JFKs speech together on the TV. Course it was all futile- 40 miles from Manhattan would have had us fried, anyway. But the tension is forever memorable.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  239. “As you know, World War Three will be the first world war to be seen on television…”

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yrbv40ENU_o

    God Bless Tom Lehrer.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  240. #241 If true, that’s a nice bit of work for the former senator from Indiana, Dick Lugar — especially since he passed away in 2019.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  241. @245. This persuader was named German Lugar, Jimbo.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  242. Is it too much to hope that Trump might act like a decent human being in view of other people’s suffering? Yes, it is:

    Trump: “We are praying for the people of Ukraine, God bless them all. They are indeed brave. As everyone understands this horrific event would not have happened if there wasn’t a rigged election and I was president.”

    He is congenitally incapable of putting anything ahead of his sick need for constant ego-polishing. He pretends to care about something else for a moment, but he can’t sustain he act.

    It turns my stomach to know that Americans who purport to care about morality and religious values still revere him and paint him as a super-patriot. They are either deeply deluded or ethically bankrupt. Fiona Hill said:

    “There’s no Team America for Trump. Not once did I see him do anything to put America first. Not once. Not for a single second.”

    Yet part of the GOP would be happy to cheat to make him president again.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  243. Here’s a good thread from Major General Mick Ryan.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  244. According to Trump, Putin is the smart guy and everybody else is “not so smart”. He just cannot stop praising evil.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  245. Russia threatens ‘military and political consequences’ if Finland, Sweden try joining NATO
    ………
    “Finland and Sweden should not base their security on damaging the security of other countries and their accession to NATO can have detrimental consequences and face some military and political consequences,” Zakharova said in a viral clip of a press conference.
    ………
    ……… Finland and Sweden have given significant military and humanitarian support to Ukraine since Russia invaded.
    ………
    Related:
    Finland, Sweden brush off Moscow’s warning on joining NATO
    ………
    Finnish Foreign Minister Pekka Haavisto said Saturday that “we’ve heard this before.”

    “We don’t think that it calls for a military threat,” Haavisto said in an interview with the Finnish public broadcaster YLE. “Should Finland be NATO’s external border, it rather means that Russia would certainly take that into account in its own defense planning. I don’t see anything new as such” in the statement …….
    ……….
    In Sweden, Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson addressed Moscow’s statement in a joint news conference Friday with Sweden’s military commander Micael Byden.

    “I want to be extremely clear. It is Sweden that itself and independently decides on our security policy line,” Andersson said.
    ……..
    “It’s obvious that if Finland and Sweden join NATO, which is first of all a military organization, it will entail serious military-political consequences, which would require retaliatory steps by the Russian Federation,” Zakharova said at a news briefing Friday.
    ……….
    Though not members, Finland and Sweden closely cooperate with NATO, allowing, among other things, the alliance’s troops to exercise on their soil. Helsinki and Stockholm have also substantially intensified their bilateral defense cooperation in the past years, and secured close military cooperation with the United States, Britain and neighboring NATO member Norway.
    ##########

    Poland, Sweden refuse to play Russia in World Cup qualification playoffs after invasion of Ukraine
    ……..
    Poland was due to travel to Moscow to face Russia on Thursday, March 24, while Ukraine was scheduled to travel to face Scotland on the same day.

    The winner of the Poland-Russia game would host either Sweden or Czech Republic on March 29 in the final of their World Cup qualification route.

    And the Swedish Football Association (SVFF) said on Saturday its board had decided that its men’s national team “will not play a possible playoff match against Russia — regardless of where the match is played.
    “The Federal Board also urges FIFA to cancel the play-off matches in March in which Russia participates,” the SVFF statement added.

    “We have a hard time believing that FIFA will not follow our call. Russia cannot join as long as this madness continues,” the Swedish FA said.
    ………
    “Based on the current alarming development in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, including the security situation, the Football Associations of Poland (PZPN), Sweden (SvFF) and Czech Republic (FAČR) express their firm position that the playoff matches to qualify for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, scheduled for 24 and 29 March 2022, should not be played in the territory of the Russian Federation,” it said.

    ……….

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  246. Given the incompetence shown so far by Putin’s conscript army, we have to wonder if they — and, sadly, the Ukrainians — might not soon be hit by those traditional followers of armies, diseases.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  247. “Because Putin knows if I am president of the United States, his days of tyranny and trying to intimidate the United States and those in Eastern Europe are over. I’m going to stand up to him. He’s a bully…” – Joe Biden

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  248. @250. Poker Putin.

    His deal; another card played. And how do Finland and Sweden play the hand: Up the ante? Check the bet? Call his bluff? Shoot the dealer? Or just fold and find another game to play.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  249. One thing I had not known until recently is that Finland, and to some extent, Sweden, already cooperate with NATO. Extensively.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  250. #241 If true, that’s a nice bit of work for the former senator from Indiana, Dick Lugar — especially since he passed away in 2019.

    Jim Miller (406a93) — 2/26/2022 @ 5:10 pm

    I can’t read DS-CSA’s comment at 241, but from the context…is it possible he confused Luger, the German pistol, with Lugar, the dead senator?

    Note to our resident racist: great self-own! Glorious, even!

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  251. DCSCA plays Cheka, not Wordle. 😉

    nk (1d9030)

  252. Didn’t think so. It gets crowded in those shelters. canned saltines, yum.

    mg (8cbc69)

  253. Trump: “We are praying for the people of Ukraine, God bless them all. They are indeed brave. As everyone understands this horrific event would not have happened if there wasn’t a rigged election and I was president.”

    Radegunda (c970ff) — 2/26/2022 @ 5:22 pm

    Oh, dear sweet mother of pearl, Rad. Please tell me this is a joke. Please tell me Trump didn’t actually say that at CPAC tonight. I mean, I’d like to believe that even his narcissistic idiocy has limits.

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  254. whatabout putin loving nazi white supremacists??

    They just finished serenading Trump with “Ivanka From Igarka” and are circulating a petition for DeSantis to rename St. Petersburg back to Leningrad.

    nk (1d9030)

  255. #255 – Demosthenes – Right you are.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  256. If it weren’t for Putin’s invasion, this would be getting more attention. And it deserves more:

    Some of the presidential records recovered from former president Donald Trump’s residence at Mar-a-Lago are so sensitive they may not be able to be described in forthcoming inventory reports in an unclassified way, two people familiar with the matter said Friday.

    The revelation comes as Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney (D-N.Y.) sent the National Archives and Records Administration a request for further information on 15 boxes of records recovered from Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort last month. The Archives set Friday as its deadline for an inventory of the contents.

    This will especially hit hard with the millions who have had to follow the classification rules.

    (No, I don’t know why Trump took them, or why he thought he could get away with taking them.)

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  257. #RussianWarshipGoF[___]Yourself is already a meme but the naughty word filter won’t let me link it.

    nk (1d9030)

  258. (No, I don’t know why Trump took them, or why he thought he could get away with taking them.)

    To sell them. Why else? He may already have scanned them and uploaded them to Putin, Xi, or Kim, but more likely to a broker who will do the actual peddling.

    nk (1d9030)

  259. He is a corrupt criminal traitor and anybody who says he is not is also a traitor.

    nk (1d9030)

  260. Some uncertainty about those border guards on Snake Island:

    Ukrainian border guards who insulted Russian forces this week in a recorded exchange that went viral may not have been killed, Ukrainian officials said Saturday, contradicting an earlier claim by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

    What seems certain is that “Ukrainian officials lost communication with the guards”. Beyond that, we just don’t know.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  261. Is Putin trapped?
    …….. Maybe the reports of high Russian casualties and a slower than expected advance are well-meaning nonsense pushed by western intel agencies to boost Ukrainian morale.

    But if they aren’t, it seems to me that Putin is trapped.

    His decision to attack Ukraine is frequently described as a “gamble” but consider how much of a gamble it is. He didn’t merely place a huge bet, he bet on a trifecta. First, that Russia could take Ukraine quickly without much blood spilling. Second, that Zelensky would go wobbly and Ukrainian resolve would break, clearing the way for a puppet ruler to be installed without much resistance. And third, that the west would be too weak and divided to impose painful sanctions on Russia at a moment of high inflation, knowing how westerners will end up sharing that economic pain.

    That first bet is still winnable, I suppose, but each day that passes makes it less likely……..
    ………
    The second bet, arguably the most important, is already hopelessly lost. Zelensky has inspired the western world with his leadership during the crisis. By refusing to leave the country, he’s galvanized the resistance in Ukraine and beyond. There are reports of men from NATO countries in eastern Europe crossing into Ukraine to aid in the country’s defense. Even Putin’s repulsive nationalist bootlickers in western Europe, figures like Marine Le Pen, Eric Zemmour, and Matteo Salvini, have been sufficiently shamed by it that they’re now anti-war.…….
    ………
    The third bet is on the brink of being lost, with potentially cataclysmic consequences for Russia’s economy. The country could be cut off from SWIFT in a matter of days, a move supported even by European leaders otherwise well disposed to Putin:
    ………
    A strong surge of domestic support for the war would be a consolation to Putin but that’s absent in this case too. Russian state media has reportedly taken to suppressing information about the scale of the war, fearful of how the public would react if it knew Russia was attacking Ukraine far beyond the Donbas. And the calamity from sanctions is only just beginning to unfold.
    ……..
    ……..
    All of this has the makings of a debacle. For all the hype about Putin’s alleged strategic “genius,” he may now find himself in a position in which any move he makes will cause Russia’s position to further deteriorate. If he retreats, it’ll be an historic humiliation for a proud military power. If he escalates, the already ferocious international backlash will get worse. It’ll cinch Russia’s eviction from SWIFT, convince even reluctant European allies to boost their supplies of weapons to Ukraine, and possibly lead to domestic unrest in Russia.

    How does this end?

    This piece by Lawrence Freedman, which came recommended by the head of MI6 on Twitter last night, offers an answer. One way or another, it won’t end well for Putin:
    ………
    He needs a face-saving way out, a peace deal that would allow him to retreat while claiming a moral victory, however farcical that might seem. But what would that deal look like? Some have suggested conceding the sovereignty of the separatist-controlled areas in eastern Ukraine, Luhansk and Donetsk, yet that should be a nonstarter under the circumstances. It would amount to rewarding Russia for the war by allowing them to formally carve off a piece of Ukraine in lieu of swallowing the entire country, a new Sudetenland “compromise.” …..
    ……….
    ………. (H)aving committed himself to this folly and bet the trifecta, it seems more likely that he’ll escalate than de-escalate even as the pain of the war intensifies for Russia. And if he does, the most important combatants in this conflict will become his own advisors, the only people capable of intervening to prevent him from taking unthinkable steps. I hope they’re ready to rise to the occasion the way Zelensky has.
    ………
    Of course, just carving up eastern Ukraine does nothing to address Putin’s other demands to have NATO retreat to pre-1997 boundaries.

    Quote of the day:

    “Putin might be in the process of losing Germany — which honestly, you got to really try,” (Marcel Dirsus, a German political scientist and fellow at the Institute for Security Policy at Kiel University, who has often been critical of Germany’s hesitant stance in the past) said. “Everything in this political system is stacked in your favor if you’re Russia’s president, so for you to succeed in turning Germany against you to such an extent that they will be ready to deliver [rocket-propelled grenades] to Ukraine is honestly an achievement almost.”

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  262. There are a LOT of people I’d prefer running our show than Biden. Donald Trump is not one of them. Biden is, at times thoughtful, and considers the ramifications of his actions. I think he maybe errs on the cautious but that’s better here than the bold. Or the effing random.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  263. “To sell them” is my guess too.

    As to “why he thought he could get away with taking them” — because he’s never really been held to account for anything. Having become the object of a massive, quasi-religious cult of personality, and being excused and protected by a whole political party and nearly all of right-wing media, has surely made him feel even more like Teflon Don. When he whines that he’s always being persecuted for no reason at all, the cultists believe it, and stir up a fuss.

    Not long ago, he threatened to unleash mass violence if prosecutors do something he considers wrong — and we all know what he means by that.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  264. Rip (@266):

    Now, THAT sounds like multi-level chess. If this was part of our plan, it wasn’t Biden who came up with it, but it WAS Biden who went along with it.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  265. Bumper sticker I’d like to see:

    “Steal it again!”

    Kevin M (38e250)

  266. A little history:

    A lot of people are forgetting a key detail about the August 2, 2016 meeting between Trump’s campaign manager and a Russian spy.
    YES, Manafort told Kilimnik how Trump planned to win the swing states.

    YES, Manafort took the meeting expecting $20M in benefit for him personally.
    But the TRADE was that Manafort would help Kilimnik carve up Ukraine.

    How to get Trump elected
    How to make Manafort solvent
    How to carve up Ukraine
    Manafort’s continued working with a Russian spy on plans to carve up Ukraine until he was jailed.

    This is what Manafort covered up by lying to Mueller.

    This is what Trump covered up by pardoning Manafort.
    AND guess what happened when Manafort was jailed?

    Well, the RU-backed Ukrainian oligarchs moved right onto Rudy.

    That leads directly to Trump’s “perfect phone call.”

    SDNY is — as we speak — sifting through Rudy’s phones for evidence that he was an unregistered agent of Ukraine in 2018 when he got Maria Yovanovitch fired.
    Rudy’s role as a vehicle for Russian information operations continued through the 2020 election, but Billy Barr made extensive efforts to prevent DOJ from investigating any of that.
    Trump (and Putin) managed to turn the effort to hold Trump accountable as a way to get Republicans to side with Russia.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  267. If he escalates, the already ferocious international backlash will get worse. It’ll cinch Russia’s eviction from SWIFT, convince even reluctant European allies to boost their supplies of weapons to Ukraine, and possibly lead to domestic unrest in Russia.

    I could also lead to other escalation, such as counter-strikes into Crimea, Belarus or even Russia proper by Ukrainian-marked fighter jets.

    If Russia doesn’t have air superiority, they are truly fracked.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  268. Trump: “We are praying for the people of Ukraine, God bless them all. They are indeed brave. As everyone understands this horrific event would not have happened if there wasn’t a rigged election and I was president.”

    Radegunda (c970ff) — 2/26/2022 @ 5:22 pm

    Oh, dear sweet mother of pearl, Rad. Please tell me this is a joke. Please tell me Trump didn’t actually say that at CPAC tonight. I mean, I’d like to believe that even his narcissistic idiocy has limits.

    Demosthenes (3fd56e) — 2/26/2022 @ 6:34 pm

    You can’t really be surprised. This is the same man who, hours after Al Qaeda brought down the Twin Towers, said lol now I have the tallest building in south Manhattan. (And even that was a lie).

    lurker (59504c)

  269. The people who can stop Putin are the oligarchs, if they are willing to take collective action. All the economic pressure is on them, and if their choice is “ruin” or “remove Putin” I think I know which way they’ll go.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  270. That the milestones of Trump’s Presidency were
    1. His invitation to the Taliban to meet at Camp David;
    2. Covid;
    3. The BLM riots;
    4. The 1/6 Capitol invasion; and
    5. I’ll go along with his claim for this one time, a Presidential election was stolen?

    nk (1d9030) — 2/26/2022 @ 9:58 am

    Only somebody blinded by TDS would leave out the exchange of loin-stirring love letters with Kim Jong-un, which, as promised, totally ended N. Korea’s nuclear weapons program.

    lurker (59504c)

  271. And speaking of blind commie hatred, when is somebody going to apologize to Steve King? Wasn’t it just a couple of years ago he got cancelled for doing exactly what’s making Marjorie Taylor Greene today’s GOP hero?

    Like so many great men, King’s only crime was being ahead of his time.

    lurker (59504c)

  272. Trump Says He’s Pro-Ukraine — Days After Calling Putin’s Plan ‘Genius’

    Donald Trump on Saturday claimed to be a supporter of Ukraine, days after saying Russian President Vladimir Putin was a “genius” for starting the invasion.
    “The Russian attack on Ukraine is appalling. It’s an outrage, and an atrocity that should never have been allowed to occur,” he said Saturday night at CPAC. “We are praying for the proud people of Ukraine.”

    Trump immediately steered his remarks back to his favorite topic: his false claim that he was the winner of the 2020 election. “As everyone understands, this horrific disaster would never have happened if our election was not rigged, and if I was the president,” he said. “Very simple: it wouldn’t have happened.”
    ………
    On Saturday, Trump again called Putin “smart.” The member states of NATO, on the other hand, “are not so smart. They’re looking the opposite of smart.”
    ………
    Trump’s remarks on the crisis in eastern Europe came after he hinted at a 2024 run for the White House.

    “We did it twice, and we’ll do it again,” Trump said, being deliberately vague about whether he was referring to simply running for the office, or winning the presidency. (The latter case would, of course, be a lie since Trump lost the 2020 election.) “We’re going to be doing it again a third time,” Trump said. “November 2024 they will find out like never before.”
    ……….
    Of course, Trump was doing Putin’s dirty work in Ukraine and so Putin got what he wanted without doing anything. Trump continually undermined the Ukraine government by insisting they provide “evidence” against the Bidens (remember his “perfect” phone call). Trump also delayed approximately $390M (in violation of the law) in security assistance to the Ukrainians, again, undermining their ability to stave off the Russian-supported rebels.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  273. @Rip@266 The Czech Republic has a historical tradition of defenestrating bad leaders. Perhaps their fellow Slavs in Russia should take it up.

    Nic (896fdf)

  274. Rip (@266):

    Now, THAT sounds like multi-level chess. If this was part of our plan, it wasn’t Biden who came up with it, but it WAS Biden who went along with it.

    Not sure how you came up Biden, he’s not even mentioned in the post. It describes the fix that Putin is in (of his own making). Biden had nothing to do with it. But it’s in a language DCSCA can understand.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  275. @267.Biden is, at times thoughtful, and considers the ramifications of his actions

    Except he doesn’t:

    Russia’s space agency warns US sanctions could ‘destroy’ cooperation on the International Space Station

    ‘CNN)The head of Russia’s space agency says new US sanctions have the potential “to destroy our cooperation” on the International Space Station. There are currently four NASA astronauts, two Russian cosmonauts and one European astronaut living and working on board the orbiting outpost.

    After President Joe Biden announced new sanctions Thursday that “will degrade their (Russia’s) aerospace industry, including their space program,” Roscosmos Director General Dmitry Rogozin said on Twitter that the station’s orbit and location in space are controlled by Russian engines.’

    https://www.cnn.com/2022/02/24/politics/russian-space-agency-us-sanctions-international-space-station/index.html

    So Joe won’t sanction Russian oil but sanctions Roscosmos threatening the loss of the multi-billion ISS, destroying years of assembly, work and cooperation.

    Thoughtful? Ramifications?

    Joe Biden is a brain-dead idiot, Kevin:

    “Because Putin knows if I am president of the United States, his days of tyranny and trying to intimidate the United States and those in Eastern Europe are over. I’m going to stand up to him. He’s a bully…” – Joe Biden

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  276. Dana, I just left you the following message. Being the lol idiot that I am, I forgot to expurgate the prohibited word. Let’s see if I’m smart enough to get it right on the third try:

    “Dana, when you have moment, I have a comment stuck in moderation. It’s sort of coming back to me that Pat may have banned “TeeDeeS.” Unsurprisingly the filter can’t tell when it’s being used ironically.

    Anyway, thanks in advance.”

    lurker (59504c)

  277. Is Putin trapped? [HOT AIR ARTICLE]

    Rip Murdock (d67a00) — 2/26/2022 @ 7:25 pm

    Always trust content from Patterico and Allahpundit! (Who is consistently THE sanest blogger over at Hot Air.) Thanks for linking that, Rip. I read it, and it cheered me muchly.

    You can’t really be surprised. This is the same man who, hours after Al Qaeda brought down the Twin Towers, said lol now I have the tallest building in south Manhattan. (And even that was a lie).

    lurker (59504c) — 2/26/2022 @ 7:47 pm

    Surprised? Yeah, no, you’re right. Not surprised. Can I still say “dismayed”, though? It’s like, f*** it all, Donald, even the deaths of thousands and the panic of millions has to be about YOU and your d**nable conspiracy theories?!

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  278. Why can’t you just write out “Technical Data Sheet”?

    nk (1d9030)

  279. @278. There may be another facet to this; Nic and I were chatting about this the other evening- he may be ill. Putin wants to secure a legacy and that ‘return to the USSR’ thing, and he’ll be 70 this October. Nioc noted he is above the average life-expectancy age for a Russian male given the envirment he has lived in. Making this move now could have less to do w/t perception of Biden’s fecklessness and more to do w/Vlad’s own physicality. He may have tumor or some other medical issue that limits the time he has left and wants to get on with his dreams before his dreams come to an end. His lashing out first at the West then at Finland and Sweden is unusually publicly provocative behavior for an ex-KGBer. But OTOH, he is a poker player.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  280. Poker? I don’t even know her.

    He is a trained spy, enforcer, and assassin. He does not play poker. He collects his percentage from those who do.

    nk (1d9030)

  281. Poland, Sweden refuse to play Russia in World Cup qualification playoffs after invasion of Ukraine

    There’s a simple solution here. Bar Russia from further participation in UEFA World Cup qualifiers, and replace them in their four-team playoff with Slovakia — the next team down in their group.

    This would be especially fitting if the Russian-replacing Slovaks then went on to beat the Czechs, who have so far shamefully refused to stand with the Poles and the Swedes on this matter.

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  282. @284. He is a trained spy, enforcer, and assassin.

    Baccarat then. Not a shoe-banger at the U.N., eh.

    His name? Putin. Vladimir Putin.

    “Then I must pass the shoe.” – James Bond 007 [Sean Connery] “Dr. No” 1962

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  283. SNL cold open- “tying yellow and blue ribbons’ ’round the ol’TV.”

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  284. Not sure how you came up Biden, he’s not even mentioned in the post. It describes the fix that Putin is in (of his own making). Biden had nothing to do with it. But it’s in a language DCSCA can understand.

    If it was a trap, we set it. It didn’t just happen. The chess game started a while back.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  285. Trump again called Putin “smart.” The member states of NATO, on the other hand, “are not so smart. They’re looking the opposite of smart.”

    His idea of “smart” is “wily and unscrupulous.” He admires people who have no qualms about taking advantage of other people’s moral scruples, and who can get away with crossing lines and trampling on rules.

    He does not respect people who try to play by the rules and act by a moral code. He thinks that’s stupid.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  286. This would be especially fitting if the Russian-replacing Slovaks then went on to beat the Czechs, who have so far shamefully refused to stand with the Poles and the Swedes on this matter.

    To be fair, the Czechs were on the other end of this. Twice. And nobody lifter a finger to help them.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  287. “Ukrainian civilians are now systematically burning abandoned Russian Army vehicles”

    War crime against the Earth. Climate deniers

    steveg (e81d76)

  288. “If you asked the US Air Force, the vote would be unanimous in favor.

    We’d have air superiority in a matter of hours. Might have to smash a few SAM sites in Belarus.”

    Agreed except it would drag us into a huge escalation

    steveg (e81d76)

  289. @266. ‘All of this has the makings of a debacle. For all the hype about Putin’s alleged strategic “genius,” he may now find himself in a position in which any move he makes will cause Russia’s position to further deteriorate. If he retreats, it’ll be an historic humiliation for a proud military power. If he escalates, the already ferocious international backlash will get worse. It’ll cinch Russia’s eviction from SWIFT, convince even reluctant European allies to boost their supplies of weapons to Ukraine, and possibly lead to domestic unrest in Russia.’

    A trap set in motion since 1991, maintained through several administrations and personnel changes, heightened 15 years ago as he rose to power, intensified through 2014 w/Crimea… to be tripped by this? Doubt it.

    This piece by Lawrence Freedman, which came recommended by the head of MI6 on Twitter last night…’

    From the same MI6 that nested and nurtured the likes of Rooskie spies Kim Philby and Anthony Blunt… speculative credibility a little shaky and stirred there.

    https://historycollection.com/this-spy-ring-betrayed-the-us-and-british-to-soviet-intelligence/12/

    Wouldn’t put too much stock in fog of war stories, stats, numbers and packaged video from the social media universe these days. The cyber kids in the brave new world are clever. TAnd the kinetic reality is just 72 hours old.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  290. @285. There’s a simple solution here.

    Yes. It’s not like rogue heads of state haven’t been marked before; the intel kids know where he eats, sleeps and poops.

    Kill him.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  291. Surprised? Yeah, no, you’re right. Not surprised. Can I still say “dismayed”, though? It’s like, f*** it all, Donald, even the deaths of thousands and the panic of millions has to be about YOU and your d**nable conspiracy theories?!

    Demosthenes (3fd56e) — 2/26/2022 @ 8:11 pm

    Yeah, I think it does.

    He can take in information like a normal person, but, and here you can pick your own metaphor: event horizon, Hotel California, Roach Motel… once the data is absorbed into his all-consuming solipsism, it can never leave. To some extent that means I’m absolving him of moral agency. He’s a despicable human being, but I doubt he’s capable of being otherwise. It’s an open question whether proper deterrence might conform his behavior to civilized rules, but I suspect his psyche is too broken for him ever to feel morally bound by the social norms about considering other people’s needs, rights or even existence.

    So yeah, thousands dead, millions homeless. In his experience it’s literally all about him.

    lurker (59504c)

  292. How any ‘conservative’ who voted for Biden isn’t suffering voter remorse is beyond me.

    https://twitter.com/lawyer4laws/status/1497286873890369548?s=21

    Obudman (893091)

  293. @296. He clearly hasn’t aged well.

    Nor have his comments.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  294. If it was a trap, we set it.

    And Putin, the “smart, savvy, genius” was apparently too stupid to see it.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  295. Global Air Travel Is Disrupted by Russian Invasion of Ukraine
    ……….
    ……….(A) handful of countries, including the U.K., have barred Russian planes from their airspace—triggering reciprocal bans by Moscow in most cases. Sharper Western sanctions on Russia and a widening conflict in Ukraine threaten to cut off more Russian airspace, a crucial corridor for many long-haul flights, particularly between Europe and Asia. The plane maker Airbus SE, meanwhile, could be caught up in restrictions over sales of planes and parts. The European Union is planning to ban such sales as part of sanctions aimed at punishing Russian President Vladimir Putin for the invasion of Ukraine.

    On Thursday, the U.K. banned Russian commercial jets, including those of flag carrier Aeroflot-Russian Airlines, from its airspace, part of the U.K.’s sanctions. On Friday, Russia responded by banning British carriers from its skies. Germany’s Deutsche Lufthansa AG said late Saturday it won’t use Russian airspace for the next seven days “due to the current and emerging regulatory situation.” Eight other countries, including Poland and Bulgaria, have issued similar bans, followed by reciprocal action from Russia, according to flight-tracking service Flightradar24.
    ………
    Delta said it is withdrawing its code-sharing service with Aeroflot effective immediately, ending a marketing agreement under which airlines sell tickets on each others’ flights. The move affected the sale of tickets on a handful of Aeroflot-operated flights out of Moscow’s Sheremetyevo International Airport, and it removed Aeroflot’s right to sell tickets on Delta flights from Los Angeles and New York. Delta doesn’t operate flights to Russia or Ukraine. …….

    There were also unexpected repercussions for Aeroflot on the ground. Manchester United, the British soccer club, said it would withdraw its sponsorship agreement with the Russian airline. The carrier had been the team’s official airline sponsor since 2013 and provided chartered flights for the team.…….

    Early Thursday in Europe, the continent’s air-traffic control coordinator warned commercial traffic to avoid Ukraine’s airspace. European authorities have since expanded that warning to include Moldova, Belarus, all operations in Russia within 200 nautical miles of the Ukrainian border and airspace in southwestern Russia. The restrictions don’t restrict flights to or from Moscow itself. The changes forced a handful of airliners to change course midflight.

    Some airlines have canceled flights out of caution.……. The Dutch flag carrier, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, part of Air France-KLM SA, said it has scrapped its daily evening flight to Moscow in line with a new policy that prohibits crews staying overnight in Russia.
    ……..
    For British and Russian carriers, the fallout has been immediate. …….
    ……..,,

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  296. Two more detained Russian soldiers near Kharkiv today. Surrendered without fighting. Saying they don’t understand why Putin throw them into the war with Ukraine.

    Link

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  297. FWIW, just look at this article from a month ago- as ‘The Gathering Storm’ was building. Several media outlets reported similar stories in the same time periosd

    https://news.yahoo.com/ukrainians-start-to-grapple-with-warnings-that-a-russian-invasion-is-imminent-205054665.html

    “Nevertheless, restaurants in the Ukrainian capital are full, nightlife venues are hopping, parties are in full swing and malls were bustling with weekend shoppers. “Clubs are open, programs and lineups are planned for the whole next season,” Alisa Mullen, CEO at Strela Booking Agency, told Yahoo News. “Everything will stop only if there is a really serious threat,” and most people she knows “believe that under no circumstances will hostilities take place in Kyiv.” Artur Mars, PR manager at Dontstop Agency, concurs. “The fairs, the plays, the nightlife continues,” he said. “Life goes on as usual, just with some COVID restrictions.”

    ‘Everything will stop only if there’s a serious threat….’ It’s a little baffling, w/all the warnings telegraphed to Ukraine, from so many credible sources, why so many Ukrainians just chose to more or less passively ignore or dismiss what was coming and now find themselves heading for the borders. It’s just strange.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  298. Kill him.

    You have a magic wand or something?

    Kevin M (38e250)

  299. And this, from 1/27/22:

    Zelensky questions U.S. warnings of “imminent” invasion in Biden call

    https://news.yahoo.com/zelensky-questions-u-warnings-imminent-012235227.html

    And this from 1/28/22:

    Ukraine’s President Zelensky urges world leaders to tone down rhetoric on threat of war with Russia

    https://www.cnn.com/2022/01/28/europe/ukraine-russia-zelensky-biden-intl/index.html

    Or this, from 1/28/22

    ‘We don’t have a Titanic here’: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky downplays the US assessment of imminent Russian invasion as Gen. Mark Milley warns a full attack would be ‘horrific’ and bring a ‘significant amount of casualties’

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10452249/Ukrainian-President-Volodymyr-Zelensky-told-Biden-tone-messaging-invasion.html

    Zelinsky was getting “ice warnings” a month ago. Historians will have to decide whether or not he led his people properly or did them a disservice by following this line of country.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  300. It’s an open question whether proper deterrence might conform his behavior to civilized rules

    I hope they film his first week in GenPop.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  301. And Putin, the “smart, savvy, genius” was apparently too stupid to see it.

    What appears “smart” to The Donald is dquestionable. Left unsaid is my opinion of those who think The Donald is smart.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  302. @302. You know what you’re dealing with, Kevin. It’s an issue of going Mary Poppins or Tony Soprano. Either way, it’s a matter of having the balls to execute such an act. We know Putin does. In the end, after the hurt-bird-hemming-and-hawing, Russians might thank the “TBD U.N. nation’ — or the ‘James Bond’ who knocks him off.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  303. @302. Who replaces him? Lavrov?

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  304. @302. There were 22 attempts to kill Hitler, Kevin:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_assassination_attempts_on_Adolf_Hitler

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  305. @302. Kevin, Caesar was nailed– well knifed.

    Just look at this list– Haiti’s Jovenel Moïse was bumped off only last July. His killer hasn’t been caught. Maybe a ‘Mr. Bond’ is rested up by now and ready for his next assignment. 😉

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_assassinated_and_executed_heads_of_state_and_government

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  306. And now for the whipped cream on the banana split:

    Sean Penn, on the ground in Ukraine, says Putin has ‘made a most horrible mistake for all of humankind’

    ‘Actor and activist Sean Penn, who is on the ground in Ukraine filming a documentary on the invasion, denounced Russian President Vladimir Putin for what the American filmmaker called “a most horrible mistake for all of humankind.”

    In a statement to The Washington Post, Penn on Saturday praised Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, while acknowledging the destruction caused by Putin in the days since Russia launched broad attacks throughout Ukraine.’ -WAPO.com

    Didn’t POTUS and the State Department advise all Americans to get out of Ukraine or remain at their own risk as there were no plans to evacuate any who stayed?

    What could go wrong.

    “CIA! I was working for the CIA! Me!” – Daulton Lee [Sean Penn] ‘The Falcon and The Snowman’ 1985

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  307. DSCA do you think putin is smiling now. Stalin had the communist party to support him putin only has a crime family and we know how crime bosses end up.

    asset (6fcccb)

  308. Actor and activist Sean Penn is now in the ukraine chronicling the peoples resistance. Tucker carlson MJT and c-pac are supporting putin.

    asset (6fcccb)

  309. Trump has benefited from the wall to wall Ukraine media coverage. Hardly a word about his Truth Social release debacle. Its only been active a few days and they’re already banning people.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  310. @311.Asset: depends on what the ultimate objective is of Xi-Vlad ‘New World Order’ partnership; The Hill opines this POV regarding the Putin/Biden bout:

    Vladimir Putin wins big, yet again

    ‘President Biden has just abdicated the role of the United States as the leader of the free world with his meek response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. This signals the beginning of the decline of the liberal, democratic way of life in the U.S., Western Europe and other parts of the world and the rise of the illiberal, autocratic way of life in Russia, China and other countries across the globe. It is as simple as that: The East wins and the West loses.

    It is hard to believe that more than a day after Russian President Vladimir Putin began his invasion of Ukraine, the U.S. and its NATO allies were talking — yes, talking — about imposing drastic sanctions whose effects are questionable and would take time to kick in rather than deploying their power to stop him. What the world needs now is a leader with the foresight and resolve of Winston Churchill, who had the courage to stand up to Germany during World War II despite knowing the heavy price that Britain would pay. But it doesn’t have to be, and shouldn’t be, this way. Biden still has the choice to stop talking and start doing to put Putin in his place.

    The path for Biden is clear and is based on the fundamental understanding that Putin is the product of the street gangs of the post-war St. Petersburg. He is a scrappy bully who understands and respects brute force and takes the words of Biden as a sign of weakness — and an invitation to invasion.

    Biden’s pathway includes:

    1) Borrow a page from Putin’s playbook and generate an invitation from the lawful government of Ukraine for “peacekeeping” assistance from the U.S. and its NATO allies to fight against the Russian forces. The West cannot leave Ukraine alone to fight for the existing world order or against Putin’s desire to reconstitute the Soviet bloc. This is simply unfair, as Ukraine was made to give up its nuclear arsenal. If Biden does not want to put American boots on the ground, this can still be achieved through the use of remote targets and by advising allies. For this task, Biden would likely get the support of Congress.

    2) Support Russians opposing Putin’s invasion. Many Russians oppose Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. The U.S. and its Western friends should bombard the Russian airwaves and internet with messages of support and appreciation for the people of Russia and express disdain for Putin. This is likely to further increase opposition to the invasion among Russians who have been sitting on the fence.

    3) Intensify the depth and scope of economic sanctions. While past sanctions have not been fully effective against Russia, they certainly had some impact. And the new, more extreme sanctions, meant to paralyze Russia’s financial system and its high-tech industry, are bound to have more devastating effects.

    4) Recruit more countries to condemn Putin’s actions.The more countries that criticize Putin’s invasion and impose their own sanctions, the better. This will increase his isolation in the world.

    5) Impose sanctions on Putin’s assets. This is war, and Putin must feel it personally. He started it and should feel the consequences. Though this is not easy to achieve, it is still possible. And it’s puzzling why such sanctions have not been enacted thus far.

    There is barely time left for Biden to change gears. But he must, for the character of the free world and the U.S. as its leader hang in the balance. Action now can still contain Putin and set Biden on a winning path, not only for the U.S. but for all the free world.’

    https://thehill.com/opinion/international/595957-vladimir-putin-wins-big-yet-again

    Comes back to whether you do irritating Mary Poppins sanctions or snout-smacking Tony Soprano sanctions.

    ‘Course just putting a contract out on him for the right reward would be more immediate: heads of state who cross the line have been offed before in history for much less at the right price. Just whack the SOB. We know Putin doesn’t think twice about killing. There’s a ‘James Bond’ someplace awaiting his– or her- next assignment.

    However, won’t be surprised if the end game is a negotiated peace with a split-the-difference-Kissinger model coming into play. Troops move down from the north; up from the south along the Dnieper River; split the country N/S and troops from Russia surround Kyiv, install a puppet government and the Zelensky crowd sets up a new capital in Lviv to the West near Poland. So Putin gets his ‘buffer zoned’ sphere of influence w/an East Ukraine favorable to Russia, a West Ukraine survives w/t more liberal democracy government w/Lviv as a capital. Basically akin to the Cold War East Germany/West Germany scenario and the pipelines keep the energy flowing to dependent NATO/Europe. Then garnish w/a wall. He may be ill, too, as noted up thread. The long term concern for the U.S. is Taiwan. But what the hell, just send in 007 and whack him. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  311. Takes a special kind of stupidity to shutter nuclear plants, halt fracking and exploration, cancel pipelines, subsidize the inefficient burning of 1/3 of the corn crop, toss-away energy security, and relinquish sector after sector of our former industrial dominance (machine tools, strategic raw materials, pharmaceuticals, ships, textiles, chemicals, electronics, et al).

    However, we are #1 in tattoo artists, coffee shops serving $5 burned-bean coffee, greasy drive-thru $7 hamburger shops, and lifetime $$$$$$ jobs for diversity-inclusion-equity directors (those lacking sufficient melanin need not apply). And the drive thru borders are special. So, there’s that.
    Can republicans be more pathetic?

    mg (8cbc69)

  312. It is heartening to see togetherness – country and bravery of the Ukrainian military, political, and civilian forces. Ukraine has many more citizens than Putin has troops to send and keep there. It is more than nationalism and love of country. The memories of a Russia that caused millions of Ukrainians to painfully starve to death in the Holodomor is something that puts a lot of grit in the fight to stay free of russia.

    mg (8cbc69)

  313. Loser Putin?

    Retired Army Lieutenant General Keith Kellogg made a stunning declaration on Fox News, telling anchor John Roberts he thinks that Vladimir Putin “has lost this war.”

    On Saturday afternoon’s edition of Fox News Live, Gen. Kellogg was Roberts’ guest to discuss the ongoing war in Ukraine, which has revealed a fierce and defiant spirit that has been on vivid display in news coverage of Russia’s invasion.

    If you read the whole piece, you’ll see that “is losing the war” is a better summary of General Kellogg’s thoughts than “has lost”, but even that is still a striking opinion.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  314. Greg Abbot also sends a message to Putin-putaines:

    Gov. Abbott tweets a request to pull Russian products from Texas shelves

    nk (1d9030)

  315. @296. Ukrainian women are using their guns to defend their homes. Lauren Boebert is using hers as a stage prop. (It’s Sunday, I tried to say the nicest thing possible about -ert and her gun.)

    nk (1d9030)

  316. I see from Da Internets that the Governor of Utah has also ordered the State’s liquor stores to take Russian vodka off their shelves. All three bottles.

    nk (1d9030)

  317. “Smart savvy genius” Putin is rattling a big sabre.

    Putin is meeting defense minister Shoigu and chief of general staff Gerasimov in the Kremlin.

    He says western sanctions are “illegitimate” and has ordered to place Russia’s deterrence – i.e. nuclear – forces on “a special regime of duty,” per
    @tass_agency

    Putin: “Western countries aren’t only taking unfriendly economic actions against our country, but leaders of major Nato countries are making aggressive statements about our country. So I order to move Russia’s deterrence forces to a special regime of duty.”

    This is similarly “off” as his earlier speeches, but this nuclear extortion smells like a little desperation if he’s threatening WWIII.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  318. For those of you don’t read or subscribe to The Dispatch, Patterico has a new piece there. Good stuff.
    Keep sanctioning more Putinistas in the Russian dictator’s orbit, and Biden should take Mr. Browder on as an advisor.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  319. We may also wish to consider how many of Trump’s oligarchs will ditch him over this.

    nk (1d9030)

  320. Just saw some loon on Twitter who is asking why we can’t just airlift everyone out of Ukraine and let Russia take over the country. There are a ton of reasons, but…I wanted to do some math.

    So, for ease of math, let’s say there are 41 million people in Ukraine. Then let’s say, with the eyes of the world on this, we can scare up a fleet of aircraft roughly the size of the largest commercial fleet in the world (that’s still American Airlines, apparently) to handle the evacuation. So, call it 900 planes for the airlift effort, again to keep the numbers even. And let’s further say that each plane can handle an average of 250 passengers per trip — which seems optimistically large to me, but let’s just suppose that the smaller carrying capacities of regional jets are offset by the massive capacities of transoceanic jets and military cargo planes. So, four planes can take 1000 people, and 900 planes can take 225,000. Which is not a small number…that’s roughly the population of Richmond, VA, gone in a single wave of flights.

    And let’s FURTHER say, given the varying destinations all these planes might be headed to, that each plane can make an average of three round trips per day — to leave time for refueling, safety checks, embarking/disembarking, etc. That would mean 5400 flights (2700 arrivals and 2700 departures) going into and out of all Ukrainian airports combined that might be able to handle bigger jets — or roughly twice as many flights as Chicago O’Hare handles on its busiest days of the year. And of course, since we’re already running on fairy dust and unicorn dreams, we assume no problems with an orderly evacuation — everyone is on board with the evacuation effort, everyone has no difficulties making it to their designated airports, and everyone is on time for their flights.

    With 900 planes making three evacuation flights per day, carrying an average of 250 passengers per flight, it would take about two months to airlift the entire population of Ukraine out of the country.

    So, easy-peasy, right? And that’s not even projecting the cost of such an effort, but I’m willing to bet that we can do it for the money we find in Grandpa Goober’s couch cushions. Let’s go, everyone!

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  321. I guessing that neither Putin nor Zelensky will actually be there, but interesting

    BREAKING: Zelensky, after talks with Lukashenko:
    Ukrainian delegation to meet Russian delegation without preconditions on Ukrainian-Belarusian border, near Pripyat River.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  322. The Belarus border near the Pripyat River? Isn’t that in the neighborhood of Chernobyl?

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  323. If my geography is right, Chernobyl is east of Kyiv, and Belarus is 50 miles north of the capital.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  324. Nope, my geography is wrong.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  325. At this point, the US and/or its allies should be having informal meet/greets with Putin’s oligarchs. Take out Vlad and we let you keep your money. Keep running Russia [into the ground]. But get rid of Vlad and promise not to invade your neighbors like he did and you can bleed your country dry.

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  326. Lurker,

    Your comment has been released.

    Dana (5395f9)

  327. Putin: “Western countries aren’t only taking unfriendly economic actions against our country, but leaders of major Nato countries are making aggressive statements about our country. So I order to move Russia’s deterrence forces to a special regime of duty.”

    He’s remarkably out of step with his own people. From what we’re seeing and reading, the Russian people no longer buy into this Soviet-like mindset, yet it’s all Putin knows. What a massive disconnect. It’s not hard to see, given the uprising of Russians who do not want war with Ukraine and disapprove of the invasion. Heck, from what we’ve seen reported, even some soldiers disapprove of it. How many more who haven’t spoken up or turned over their weapons? Also, in typical Putin fashion, he sets up the board with Russia as the victim and thus, being forced to ratchet up the defenses. I suspect he knows that he’s easily seen through by his own people, and by the world, and yet he doesn’t care. Amassing power and forcing more people under the boot is what he wants.

    Dana (5395f9)

  328. In other words, Trump will have a plan for Zelensky in two weeks, just like he would deliver a better-than-Obamacare health plan in two weeks. I’m guessing that Trump views Zelensky one of the “not so smart” set of European leaders, even though Zelensky has outsmarted Putin since Day One of the invasion.

    Trump is asked tonight specifically what he would do different in Ukraine than Biden: “Well, I tell you what, I would do things, but the last thing I would want to do is say it right now.”

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  329. If Ukraine prevails, here is one reason why.

    Local Ukrainian Resident removes Mine under a Bridge with his bare hands. What a Legend.

    While smoking a cigarette.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  330. I found this quote today:

    “During his inaugural address in 2019, Zelensky told lawmakers, “I do not want my picture in your offices. The President is not an icon, an idol or a portrait. Hang your kids’ photos instead, and look at them each time you are making a decision.””

    Maybe we need those pictures over our computers as we are posting too. I’m liking this Zelensky more and more. Courage, commitment, duty. I hope our Washington Weasels are watching (and NO, that’s not the new football team)

    AJ_Liberty (3cb02f)

  331. The bravery of people protecting their homeland from invaders: Residents block Russian tank and force it to turn around.

    Dana (5395f9)

  332. I’ll say this. Twitter has been helpful in keeping up with these fast-moving events.

    I love Miss Ukraine, and not just because she’s beautiful.

    Liz Cheney:

    As Rep Marjorie Taylor Greene and Rep Paul Gosar speak at this white supremacist, anti-Semitic, pro-Putin event, silence by Republican Party leaders is deafening and enabling.

    All Americans should renounce this garbage and reject the Putin wing of the GOP now.

    Ms. Greene is still going to speak at CPAC, which now stands for Comrade Putin’s Adoration Club.

    NEW: @mercedesschlapp told me they did not know Marjorie Taylor Greene (@RepMTG) would speak at a white nationalist conference and she was pleased MTG came to speak at #CPAC, saying they won’t “cancel” her as she claims the left does. “We want to make sure she has a voice.”

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  333. Twitter has been helpful in keeping up with these fast-moving events.

    It also, from time to time, shows me the moral bankruptcy of some on the far right who say things like “Biden is worse than Putin” or “You’ll never make me hate Putin like I hate the left.” Maybe they’re just trying to avoid admitting their failure in moral discernment when they held Putin up as a staunch defender of Christian values. Or maybe they really do hate America as it is, and don’t have an ounce of Christian charity.

    If anyone Democrat or NeverTrumper has ever said that Trump is worse than Putin, I haven’t seen it.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  334. “reject the Putin wing of the GOP now”

    Low hanging fruit, let’s start boycotting Tucker’s commercial sponsors. He sided with evil. There should be a cost to that. Fox could (and should) do better. How about a credible journalist for a change?

    AJ_Liberty (3cb02f)

  335. Mitt Romney comes out swinging today:

    Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) on Sunday slammed a pair of House Republicans after they attended a conference hosted by a prominent white nationalist over the weekend.

    “Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gosar, I don’t know them,” Romney said during an appearance on CNN. “I’m reminded of the old line from the ‘Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid’ movie, where one character says, ‘Morons, I have morons on my team.'”

    The senator added there is “no place” in either political party for white nationalism or racism, calling it “simply wrong” for elected leaders to associate themselves with white nationalists.

    “I would think that anybody that would sit down with a white nationalist and speak at their conference would certainly be missing a few IQ points,” Romney said.

    He also agreed with Liz Cheney’s condemnation of the pair, and said that she has been right all along.

    Additionally, there is a very good interview with him discussing his belief that Russia has always posed a serious threat to the world – despite being mocked for it:

    You know, it’s hard for me to believe that they didn’t realize that I was right at the time, because it was so obvious. Russia was supporting all of the dictators in the world, whether in Syria, Venezuela, Cuba, North Korea. They were opposing us at the UN whenever a critical measure came forward. They were our geopolitical adversary … And if anybody didn’t see that, who was watching carefully, I find it hard to believe.

    I guess politics can be blinding. My guess is the Obama team thought that would be politically advantageous to say, and the compliant media picked up the message and drove it home as hard as they could … I mean, I think it was The New York Times that said, “This proves Romney is unqualified to be president.” Like, oh my goodness, guys. Come on. Who do you think was our geopolitical adversary back in 2012? I’d love to know what their suggestion was. Clearly, today, China is a greater threat to our security and our economic vitality. But they weren’t a geopolitical player in the sense that Russia was back in 2012.

    The reality is President Obama’s underestimation of Russia’s intent, Vladimir Putin’s intent, is only magnified by what happened over a couple of decades. It’s not just Obama. We’ve seen this for many years. We had not sufficiently responded to villainy in the past, whether in Georgia, Ukraine, with the Crimea, with Syria, and with assassinations. We’ve downplayed those things and somehow pretended that if we just reset, that everything would be fine. President Trump invited Russian ambassadors and foreign ministers to the White House as soon as he got there. He said, “Why don’t we have Russia brought back into the G7?”

    It’s this blindness to reality that sometimes accompanies politics that, I think, has been most unfortunate.

    Dana (5395f9)

  336. Twitter has been helpful in keeping up with these fast-moving events.

    Absolutely. That we can see, hear, and read firsthand accounts from a place that is currently at war is incredible. Moreover, as our elected officials and members of Congress tweet, we are able to see who is in the pro-Putin camp and shame on America camp. That is valuable information for Americans to have in their hands as the midterms are upon us, and the ramp-up to 2024 is underway. The more they put in writing (via Twitter) their views/beliefs during such a perilous time, the more informed voters become.

    Dana (5395f9)

  337. Ukraine refuses to “lie down and enjoy it” as demanded by Putin:
    ……..
    Early on Sunday, Russian troops pushed deep into Kharkiv, which lies close to the Russian frontier. Many of these light-infantry troops were ambushed and killed or captured by Ukrainian forces hours later.

    Footage shared by Ukrainian forces on Sunday morning showed five Tigr-M armored vehicles with Russian “Z” markings destroyed on a Kharkiv street, with Ukrainian soldiers helping themselves to Russian ammunition and equipment, including several antitank rockets. A Tigr-M was also seen burning at another Kharkiv intersection. Kharkiv residents said the city appeared to be under firm Ukrainian control by the afternoon. “We are finishing up cleansing the city from the enemy,” Kharkiv Gov. Oleh Synehubov posted on social media.

    Ukrainian authorities have ordered Kyiv residents to stay indoors until Monday morning while they hunt for Russian infiltrators, who engaged in several shootouts with Ukrainian troops and civilian volunteers overnight. No shooting was heard during the day. “Kyiv continues to hold out. There are no Russian troops in Kyiv,” Mayor Vitali Klitschko said in a video address.
    ………..
    Ukrainian officials and witnesses said that one of the Russian airstrikes hit a children’s hospital in central Kyiv, Okhmatdyt, during the night, killing one child and injuring others.
    ……….
    Mr. Zelensky announced the creation of a new International Legion of the Ukrainian army, along the lines of the International Brigades that helped defend the Spanish republic in the 1930s civil war there. Existing legislation allows foreign citizens to join the Ukrainian military, and Mr. Zelensky urged potential volunteers to contact military attachés of Ukraine’s embassies abroad. “It’s not just a Russian invasion of Ukraine, it’s the beginning of a war against Europe. Against the unity of Europe. Against basic human rights in Europe,” he said.
    ……….
    Mr. Zelensky has (said) that Ukrainians are fighting and dying not just for their own country but for all of Europe.
    ……….
    If Ukrainian resistance leads to a long and bloody war—or forces Mr. Putin to seek to end the fighting without achieving his goals—the setback could threaten both his hold on power in Moscow and his drive to restore Russia as a global power.
    ……….
    The only way Putin can this quickly (within the 24-48 hours) and to cow NATO is to use battlefield nuclear weapons. He just might do it. In the meantime, the US needs to raise its nuclear readiness posture.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  338. Twitter has been helpful in keeping up with these fast-moving events.

    To some extent. I think it’s certainly been helpful at getting Ukraine’s perspective and propaganda out fast. With a sympathetic western media hoping to deter China and horrify the world, a lot of deceptive stories from the Ukrainian military have been bought, hook line and sinker, for almost all the kids on twitter, instagram, and their grandparents on facebook.

    That amazing ‘ghost of kiev’ dogfight that was footage from a video game. Those 13 guys who told the navy to go F itself before being killed, but are actually alive. That tank that ran over the car, but with no indication it was driven by a Russian, and a fairly obvious ‘why was the cameraman filming that perfectly) question.

    Don’t get me wrong: Ukraine was a peaceful and sovereign nation, and Russia is 100% the bad guy. Ukraine is desperate to survive and needs any advantage it can get, and is using Russia’s trick (lying on the internet a lot) proactively. Using the same paranoia and pattern Russia planned to. It’s impressive.

    But we do not know the truth of what’s happened in Ukraine. There’s a clear propaganda push to tell us Ukraine went toe to toe with Russia’s huge military and is decisively winning. I very much doubt that. I think Ukraine already has tens of thousands dead, and Russia was going easy. Look at what Russia did to Syria with 90% civilian casualties and ruination everywhere. Look at the missile systems we know entered from Belarus. If they set those up with SA-400s around Chernobl there is no palatable way to defeat Russia.

    What might happen is in a week or two Ukraine has a very motivated insurgency and Russia pays a tremendous price, but the powerful are isolated from the consequences and the left starts wondering why we’re making Russian citizens pay the price, and Russia offers some half-way deal where they basically get Ukraine as a vassal state.

    They do not have to win. They probably only have to hold out until next January when the US Government lurches radically in their favor. I hope I’m wrong and my sympathy is 100% with Ukraine’s citizens, but I do not think twitter is actually helping us be informed. I think it’s doing the exact opposite, but it happens to be inspiring us for the good guys so we’re pretending that’s good.

    Dustin (47bccc)

  339. “I love Miss Ukraine, and not just because she’s beautiful.”

    How could one not? Sure, she’s probably not on the front lines laying down fire (but how great would it be if she was!)…but it’s a symbol….and symbols are important. What Russian soldier wants to harm that woman? It’s a great emotional tug at “why are we here?” Are Putin’s personal insecurities worth it?

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  340. Putin is still not acknowledging that Russian troops are anywhere but the Donbass, and as of yesterday, Russia media were not being allowed to describe what is going on as a war. This is a point, people are not quite realizing nd his specch Thursday morning just before the air raids and invasion started, in spite of the fact that it does indicate he wants the Ukrainian government replaced, assumes an alternate reality in which Ukrainian troops can leave the war zone. It assumes a limited war zone.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  341. Talks between Russian and Ukrainian delegations will take place Monday on the Ukrainian-Belarusian border, President Zelensky’s office said.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  342. Well, damn, Putin IS crazy. Nuclear saber-rattling. What could go wrong?

    Kevin M (38e250)

  343. DCSCA, you’ve been saying the same Tony Soprano BS for days now. Maybe next time it will make sense to someone, but I doubt it. Find a new shtick. Tony Soprano got whacked.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  344. Actor and activist Sean Penn is now in the ukraine chronicling the peoples resistance.

    Did you know that Penn’s buddy Maduro is a Putin stooge? I’d be more impressed if Penn went to Venezuela to chronicle the resistance there.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  345. I wanted to do some math.

    Never cast your calculations before innumerates, for they will trample them.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  346. We may also wish to consider how many of Trump’s oligarchs will ditch him over this.

    I think most of them did, save for one guy who still lives in (Northern) California, so he must be mad. What I would like to see is Joe Six-Pack walk away, bringing the Flag.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  347. Low hanging fruit, let’s start boycotting Tucker’s commercial sponsors. He sided with evil. There should be a cost to that. Fox could (and should) do better. How about a credible journalist for a change?

    Considering the speed with which he changed his tune, I think that maybe he got a call from the boss explaining just that. And he could still be on thin ice as it stands.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  348. Putin is still not acknowledging that Russian troops are anywhere but the Donbass, and as of yesterday, Russia media were not being allowed to describe what is going on as a war.

    Russians still have internet access to western media and the nation of Samizdat has long known how to sort the “news.”

    Kevin M (38e250)

  349. Hi Dustin.
    That is a good take.

    I’m going to back to my 48 to 72 hour rule. I let myself get coaught up in it. Ukraine is the underdog and I’m hoping they get out of this.

    From looking at the maps, it looks like Russia is really pushing hard to take the Russian speaking areas from Donbas to Sevastapol while the world is focused on Kyiv.
    That would allow Russia to go to talks and say we’ll stop and withdraw up by Kyiv but we are keeping the Southern areas. I think this is what Russia has always wanted and there will be pressure from Western nations on Ukraine to accept the terms.

    steveg (e81d76)

  350. Low hanging fruit, let’s start boycotting Tucker’s commercial sponsors. He sided with evil. There should be a cost to that. Fox could (and should) do better. How about a credible journalist for a change?

    Sounds good, except I don’t watch cable news at all. I think most smart people who are under 60 have given up on the concept, and if we stopped talking about Tucker he’d be largely irrelevant.

    MSNBC, CNN, FNC, they aren’t very useful.

    Dustin (47bccc)

  351. I agree with Trump on one thing. The sanctions are far too weak. Even the much-vaunted SWIFT is only on some banks, and with Russia still allowed to ship oil and pass gas, the whole package does amount to just a couple of bucks’ worth.

    nk (1d9030)

  352. steveg, thanks, and good point.

    While the twitter experts on Ukraine are focused on tik tok videos about Kiev and the heroism of the president or other new internet celebrities, Russia is probably up to something elsewhere in the country, setting up plans.

    One thing that will help Russia in the long run is that much of the information Ukraine is putting out wasn’t true. Russians have always thrived on disinfo, so the doubt in the long run will be Russia’s shield. If people stop believing Ukraine, what’s to stop Russia for taking off the gloves?

    It might by like you suggest, a ‘compromise’ outcome that actually works great for Putin. If he does walk away from this without disaster, he will have overcome the expectations the west is putting out for him. Interesting dynamic. I very much hope Putin is not in power by the end of this fiasco. that should be the USA’s goal.

    Dustin (47bccc)

  353. I don’t want to talk about how some morons were calling cutting Russia off from so SWIFT the nuclear option. I just don’t.

    nk (1d9030)

  354. that’s actually very funny, nk.

    Dustin (47bccc)

  355. Dustin (47bccc) — 2/27/2022 @ 10:07 am

    Those 13 guys who told the navy to go F itself before being killed, but are actually alive.

    They are? I was wondering how they knew they were all killed, but yet got out the video. Well, the video could have been transmitted before the Russian warship did anything.

    AS for saying they died, maybe they just lost contact with them. Within the last few hours Ukrainiain officials said they might be alive (relying on TASS, which said 82 Ukrainians troops had surrendered and were now in Sevastopol, Crimea, and a Russian general said they would be released (they would be paroled and sign something not to engage in military resistance)

    There’s all this bravado.

    That tank that ran over the car, but with no indication it was driven by a Russian, and a fairly obvious ‘why was the cameraman filming that perfectly) question.

    Well, supposedly the tanks were on a roll, and the Russian soldier driving it was a sadist but didn’t have too much time.

    The biggest problem I had with it was why would a Russian soldier do this? Most of them do not support the war and are certainly not eager to do anything, . They are more like in the video with the woman chastising the Russians.

    https://www.wionews.com/world/what-the-f-are-you-doing-video-of-ukrainian-woman-confronting-russian-soldiers-goes-viral-456590

    And also how did the man survive? It would almost have to be on purpose, but then why would the Russian tank driver feel a need to impress his commanding officer that way? Orders, which he passively resisted?

    Don’t get me wrong: Ukraine was a peaceful and sovereign nation, and Russia is 100% the bad guy. Ukraine is desperate to survive and needs any advantage it can get, and is using Russia’s trick (lying on the internet a lot) proactively.

    Totally unnecessary. It’s not a military lie. Zelensky is listening to the wrong people.

    Also he’s throwing out all sorts of counteroffers and ideas. (Armed) neutrality a la Austria and Switzerland. Ukraine may get nuclear weapons (!) They had a hard time trying to make that sound plausible. Zelensky asking for a no fly zone.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  356. @348. Tony Soprano got whacked.

    Something Mr. Putin should ‘bear’ in mind, Kevin. But thank you, Mary Poppins.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  357. But we do not know the truth of what’s happened in Ukraine.

    There’s a lot of independent sources and reporters There’s not really much announcements coming out of the Ukrainian government, so not much to disregard and we can ignore these comparative casualty figures.

    What seems to be more backed up we can rely on more.

    We know for instance, that on the third day there were no more air raid sirens in Lviv. We know (I assume it has a good source) that in one city a television tower was destroyed, and in another, the Russians were trying to jam all the TV stations by broadcasting their propaganda on the same wavelengths, and it could be heard in the background.

    Do you know that, in the beginning, reporters were told that the explosions they heard were mostly Ukrainians firing back, not Russian missiles.

    There was this fear of panic that the Ukrainian government had even before this military activity all started.

    Also:

    We were told the higher levels of radiation recorded near Chernobyl were maybe because some containment section was breached. Later they said it was because heavy vehicles had stirred up some radioactively contaminated soil. The Ukrainian government was complaining that the workers there were being held hostage. Obviously they surrendered that site, probably after U.S. and other international consultations. They can’t lie too much because the United States is not going to back up the wrong kind of lies.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  358. They are? I was wondering how they knew they were all killed, but yet got out the video.

    Most reports are that they were captured. The video is deceptively ended as though the ship wiped them off the map, but that’s not really possible. It’s also ridiculous that Russia would just clean wipe an island off a map with naval cannons instead of occupying it.

    It’s like that dogfight video, where the camera amazingly follows the fighter plane around, because it’s not a camera but a computer game. Ukraine needs heroic feats to inspire the world to support their noble cause. Their brave president in the trenches braving gunfire, etc. I get it, but it’s BS. Plainly.

    Ukraine is announcing Russia fired their top general over the horrible failure of the Russian military (Russia had to announce that’s not true). That they are tracking Russian movements with Grinder (gay hookup app). It’s hilarious because Russia’s been playing this game a long time. I suspect the Americans are helping, because this material is really working on American and other western hearts and minds.

    What happens in a week or two when it turns out most claims Ukraine makes about Russia are untrue? Might be alright, because I always start from a position of believing bad things from Russia (this is not sarcasm, they are a terrible government and an evil military, plain and simple).

    Dustin (47bccc)

  359. There’s a clear propaganda push to tell us Ukraine went toe to toe with Russia’s huge military and is decisively winning. I very much doubt that.

    I can believe that, if the United States is decrypting much of the Russian communications, and giving it in real time to some trusted Ukrainians, and also volunteering excellent military advice. This would be top secret, of course, more for diplomatic and legal reasons than for other reasons. If any of this is being done in Poland it would be done by some element of the Department of Defense; if anyone is physically present in Ukraine it would be under other auspices.

    I think Ukraine already has tens of thousands dead,

    We don’t know. It waxs predicted, but we have no independent sign of it. WE do hear of an aprtment building beig bombed and only one or two or so dead. Of course we are told peole are seeking shelters in the subways, which are not running. (in how many cities did Stalin build subways? So far I’ve pn;y trad specifically of Kharkov and Kiev. (alternatively, Kharkiv and Kyiv)

    and Russia was going easy

    At first we heard that Putin had committed only one third of his forces that were surrounding Ukraine – now we hear two thirds.

    There are American and NATO sources for all that, too. Putin has not acknowledged that there are any Russian forces outside of the Donbass regions.

    Look at what Russia did to Syria with 90% civilian casualties and ruination everywhere.

    They’re not doing the same kind of bombing, for sure. Not like Chechnya, either, in Grozny.

    https://nationalinterest.org/blog/reboot/remember-grozny-how-russia-bombed-city-submission-189702

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  360. Shame On Those Who Defended Trump’s “Perfect Call”
    It’s worth remembering now, as so many Republicans pin “Stand with Ukraine” images to their profiles, how little most of them cared when Donald Trump withheld critical military assistance from the country in 2019 as he pressured Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to do his political dirty work.

    At the time, Trump’s bold attempt to get Zelensky to announce sham investigations into the Biden family and 2016 conspiracy theories were primarily viewed as a domestic affront. But the sight of Russian rockets raining down on Kyiv this week was a reminder that this obscene “drug deal” had real-world consequences. At the center of the Ukrainian scandal was a sickening truth: Trump did not see the Ukrainians as the heroes we see today; he saw them as pawns to be used for his benefit
    ………
    It’s important to remember today that Trump’s desire to manipulate Zelensky and the security of Ukraine for his personal ends was deemed entirely acceptable by Republican officeholders and elites.

    Trump’s then-chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, aggressively confirmed and defended Trump’s actions in an October 17 White House briefing. He told reporters the conspiracy theory about the Ukrainian server was “Why we held up the money.” He said there was nothing wrong with Trump’s quid-pro-quo: “We do that all the time with foreign policy.” He said: “I have news for everybody: get over it. There is going to be political influence in foreign policy.”
    ……….

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  361. @356. I agree with Trump on one thing. The sanctions are far too weak. Even the much-vaunted SWIFT is only on some banks, and with Russia still allowed to ship oil and pass gas, the whole package does amount to just a couple of bucks’ worth.

    Yep, that’s right nk. What did Joe do when his pooch, Major, which kept biting innocent people? Go with some hardass discipline w/a Tony Soprano smack on the snout… or go easy with the Mary Poppins give away option?

    “Shoot the dog.” – Arthur [Michael Caine] ‘Kingsman: The Secret Service’ 2014

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  362. 363. Most reports o Google News still have them being killed. But in the last few hours this is being corrected, evidently because they might show up. (after it was planned that they would be awarded medals posthumously – evidently the news came in time.

    I don;t know how you announce a general has been fired if people are going to see in a matter of hours that he has not been fired. Could be faulty intelligence,

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  363. Look at the missile systems we know entered from Belarus. If they set those up with SA-400s around Chernobl there is no palatable way to defeat Russia.

    t seems to be the general opinion that the Russian invasion is floundering, although that is being attributed to logistics – long supply lines.

    They are even probably getting ready to ask for a ceasefire, although the initial offer will probably be very much in Russia’s favor.

    A ceasefire is something to take, provided resupply is allowed and some other ways to benefit from the break. Both sides have to benefit from a ceasefire for this to work. For the meeting on the border, the president of Belarus has promised that no air raids or missiles from there will take place while the delegations are there.

    They could also add to it some discussions about exchange of prisoners (to help incentivize the Russian military to support that the ceasefire be kept longer.) Maybe some sanctions could be held off or reversed for a few days on the condition the ceasefire has hold for a few days. (it doesn’t matter if Putin can temporarily hold on to some more of his money.)

    Russia will break it, or should be expected to. It might take five or six ceasefires to get one that lasts for at least many months.

    But an agreement, in fact several successive agreements, if carefully negotiated, can strengthen the Ukrainian position more than the Russia. Putin doesn’t understand the problems with his army.

    A succession of ceasefire plus agreements may be the only way, short of overturning the Russian government, which can happen, and if it did it might be over almost right away, but it can’t be the only hope to get Russia to leave Ukraine alone. Putin has got to get used to it. (He won’t give up all at once)

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  364. They’re not doing the same kind of bombing, for sure. Not like Chechnya, either, in Grozny.
    If Putin wants to end his war quickly, he will need to do that or use battlefield nuclear weapons. This has the dual advantage of ending the war quickly and cowing NATO into meeting Putin’s terms.

    Russia has a 10:1 advantage over us in nonstrategic (i.e., low-yield) nuclear weapons—aka tactical or battlefield nukes……. Russia has about 2,000 nonstrategic nuclear weapons, while the U.S. has about 200 total—with half in the U.S. and half in Europe as part of NATO.
    ………
    Russia is believed to have what is called an “escalate to deescalate” doctrine for its battlefield nukes. Indeed, this doctrine might be better called “escalate to terminate—and win.”

    The idea is Russia might employ one (or more) tactical nuclear weapon during a conventional conflict with NATO forces to prevent a defeat, consolidate gains, or even freeze a conflict in place without further fighting.

    Because the disparity between Russian and U.S. tactical nuclear weapons is so large, Moscow may perceive a NATO nuclear response to lack credibility.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  365. He said: “I have news for everybody: get over it. There is going to be political influence in foreign policy.”

    That is so disingenuous. The funds were earmarked by Congress, and were part of the official foreign policy. The official policy was undermined by a shadow policy serving the personal aims of Donald Trump. That they were his aims in the field of political competition doesn’t turn it all into the normal “political influence on foreign policy.”

    It’s the very definition of corruption: turning public policy into an instrument for personal advantage.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  366. Mulvaney’s cynical defense of Trump’s self-centered action is just another version of “Our policy is whatever Trump wants.”

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  367. See pages 17-18 here for a discussion of Russia’s nonstrategic nuclear weapons.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  368. Dustin, we don’t know for sure about the status of those 13 sailors on Snake Island because the denials are coming from Russian media. I think it’s best to say that their situation is unconfirmed.

    Regarding Miss Ukraine, it brings me back to those old USO shows emceed by Bob Hope. After some gorgeous singer/dancer would finish her set, Hope would come up and say, “That’s what we’re fighting for, gentlemen.”

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  369. Sounds good, except I don’t watch cable news at all. I think most smart people who are under 60 have given up on the concept, and if we stopped talking about Tucker he’d be largely irrelevant.

    MSNBC, CNN, FNC, they aren’t very useful.

    CNBC is doing actual news shows again. Try Shepard Smith’s news hour.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  370. Most reports are that they were captured. The video is deceptively ended as though the ship wiped them off the map, but that’s not really possible.

    Prisoners of the Russian Navy, eh? That would make them the envy of everyone of AFPAC.

    nk (1d9030)

  371. Regarding Miss Ukraine, … “That’s what we’re fighting for, gentlemen.”

    During the Nazi occupation of Ukraine, one Gauleiter amassed a harem of young Ukrainian women. One of them put a landmine in his bed. Not the kind of bang he was looking for. He did not survive the experience.

    nk (1d9030)

  372. Rip Murdock (d67a00) — 2/27/2022 @ 11:36 am

    Donald Trump withheld critical military assistance from the country in 2019 as he pressured Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to do his political dirty work.

    No, he did not!

    He wanted certain people fired, whom, he didn’t know, Giuliani had already arranged to be fired. This is a point everybody missed.

    He also brought up Joe Biden, as a secondary issue, but only asked if Zelensky could check out if the allegation was true that Joe Biden had caused a prosecutor to be fired in order to protect his son.

    As part of his defense, Donald Trump said he didn’t think Joe Biden would be his Democratic opponent in 2020, so it wasn’t all that important to him personally.

    In his call, he never mentioned that any aid was being withheld, and, as far as he knew, N.B. Zelensky didn’t know that!

    They had not told the Ukrainians (probably because none of the people concerned with national security in the U.S government wanted to do that and hoped to get the hold lifted)

    Since Trump never linked the aid to any request, he described it later as “a perfect phone call”

    At the time, Trump’s bold attempt to get Zelensky to announce sham investigations into the Biden family

    He didn’t want sham investigations. H wanted real investigations. Actually, he wanted to know what the Ukrainians already knew. The link to the aid only was made by EU Ambassador Gordon Sondland (possibly with the concurrence of Mick Mulvaney) and he was guessing

    It’s quote clear in the text messages Gordon Sondland wrote.

    Wen the idea was brought to his attention, Trump said no. He had no such tradeoff in his mind.

    The truth is, Donald Trump’s mind had been poisoned against the Ukrainian government by Vladimir Putin’s agents who got disinformation into the hands of Rudolph Giuliania and the first thing this disinfomrmation operation successfully accomplished was to get the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine, Marie Yovanovitch, whose name Trump couldn’t remember, fired. In the phone call, Volodymyr Zelensly agrees with Trump that she was bad.

    Trump’s then-chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, aggressively confirmed and defended Trump’s actions in an October 17 White House briefing. He told reporters the conspiracy theory about the Ukrainian server was “Why we held up the money.”

    That was actually Trump’s number one issue in the call, not Joe Biden.

    https://www.npr.org/2019/10/17/770979659/watch-white-house-holds-now-rare-press-briefing-amid-impeachment-syria-conflicts

    Though he had multiple opportunities to walk back his comments during the press conference with reporters, the acting chief of staff said in a statement Thursday evening that there “was absolutely no quid pro quo between Ukrainian military aid and any investigation into the 2016 election” nor “any condition on the flow of the aid related to the matter of the DNC server.”

    Absolutely true, because the Ukrainians were never informed that the money was being withheld, although they had found out, but they didn’t want to mention it probably because the U.S. would then suspect them of spying and because they hoped it was because of some red tape; and Trump never linked the two issues.

    And when Gordon Sondland did link them at the beginning of September, Trump rebuffed him.

    In this connection, Trump wanted some people that Putin had caused to be maligned kept out of the Ukrainian government. As I said, Giuliani had already accomplished that, but Trump didn’t know it.

    People just liked a simple story about Trump.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  373. Dustin, we don’t know for sure about the status of those 13 sailors on Snake Island because the denials are coming from Russian media.
    Paul Montagu (5de684) — 2/27/2022 @ 12:11 pm

    It’s the state border service of Ukraine that is saying they are alive. Russia agrees I suppose. It’s President Zimminski, the photo op in body armor guy, who is saying they were heroically killed. The video obviously is deceptive because of the way it is timed and suddenly ends like that recent james bond movie.

    There’s a common sense factor here. Russia couldn’t just kill everyone instantly in .5 seconds like that with a ship’s guns. Nor would it make sense to do so, since they want to take the facility and easily could (and did).

    We really can’t trust either side’s claims right now, and there’s a trend of Ukraine putting out emotionally charged stuff knowing the urban legends will last forever and the corrections will be relegated to ‘maybe maybe not’ status.

    Insofar as this is making invasions a dumb idea (for example for Taiwan) I guess this is good, but my point is simply that we have no idea what’s really happening and a lot of ‘experts’ on social media are insisting Ukraine stood toe to toe and won already. I won’t be surprised in a week or two, but a lot of people will.

    Dustin (47bccc)

  374. FIFA restricts Russia from playing upcoming matches at home, and from playing in their country’s name — but stops short of an outright ban.

    Unfortunately for FIFA, all three teams currently competing with Russia for a World Cup spot have already announced they will not play Russia — no matter the conditions.

    Ball’s in your court, FIFA. The Poles, Swedes, and Czechs have left you with three options. You may disqualify Russia from further participation in World Cup qualifying. You may accept their decision, and send Russia through to the World Cup on forfeits. Or you can try desperately to redraw the brackets to put Russia in a pod with three teams who agree to play them under current sanctioned conditions.

    Choose.

    Demosthenes (026e09)

  375. Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d) — 2/27/2022 @ 12:25 pm

    Please read the entire article at my link, it is much detailed than my excerpt, including quotes from the impeachment report.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  376. MulvaneyL He said: “I have news for everybody: get over it. There is going to be political influence in foreign policy.”

    Radegunda (c970ff) — 2/27/2022 @ 12:01 pm

    That is so disingenuous. The funds were earmarked by Congress, and were part of the official foreign policy.

    Yes. Mulvaney didn;t mention that.

    Trump had signed the bill giving such aid, and the deadline for writingthe checks was the end of the fiscal year, Seotember 30, and if Trump wanted to reverse policy he had to make a public rescission and allow Congress to vote it up or down under the Congressional Budget and Impoundment Control Act of 1974 and the Pentagon warned that time was running out. AS it is, they were not able to get all the money out the door by the end of September, and Congress had to re-appropriate it.

    The official policy was undermined by a shadow policy serving the personal aims of Donald Trump.

    Trump was taking an unjustified policy, and he was completely ignoring the question of the authority to do what he was doing. And nobody wanted to bring it up.

    But I would say, it was not the personal aims of Donald Trump, but Donald’s Trump prejudices (helped along by Putin via Russian agents, via Giuliani. Whether he realized it or not, he was buying into disinformation coming from Vladimir Putin,

    That they were his aims in the field of political competition doesn’t turn it all into the normal “political influence on foreign policy.”

    That’s a thing that Mick Mulvaney was disputing, and actually correctly because it all concerned Ukrainian corruption (that the supposedly corrupt people were supposedly against him was sweetener to get him to act on Putin’s disinformation.)

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  377. @339. Low hanging fruit, let’s start boycotting Tucker’s commercial sponsors. He sided with evil. There should be a cost to that. Fox could (and should) do better. How about a credible journalist for a change?

    Tucka is not a journalist, AJ. He’s a television host and political commentator. Hell, Tucka embraced a convicted felon who wiretapped and threatened the life of a close friend of mine in an interview on his show as “a great/good guy.” His “opinion,” of course.

    He is also an heir to the Swanson Enterprises fortune– so begin your boycott by clearing out your freezer of Swanson TV dinners and your pantry of broths.

    _____

    @374. Try reinstating the Fairness Doctrine and regulating cable television instead.

    _____

    @332. He’s remarkably out of step with his own people.

    So was Brezhnev.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  378. I cannot imagine the resource barons in Russia being very happy about the nuclear threats. Sending Proletariat boys off to die in Ukraine is one thing, but getting all those nice oil fields blown up? Quite a different matter.

    Putin is desperate and the nuclear threat is for domestic consumption, too. I don’t think he lives to the end of March, and if he dies it will be at the hands of people who Tony Soprano wouldn’t go near.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  379. “DCSCA, you’ve been saying the same Tony Soprano BS for days now. Maybe next time it will make sense to someone”

    Sinking the yachts doesn’t make any sense. Seizing them gives you leverage over the oligarchs…leverage to drop Putin and his grand “genius” plan. Sinking them removes the leverage. If he goes, Putin will be taken out by those around him that no longer view him as genius. The idea of US/EU/Israeli hit squad is unrealistic…maybe great for an Amazon Prime mini-series, but the precedent is chilling and the response and success unknowable. Even allegedly brain-dead Joe understands this. Even though DCCCP continues to poke at Zelensky’s incompetence, at least he’s moved on from cheering the Russian tanks and admiring the Putin. Baby steps….

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  380. Ball’s in your court, FIFA

    Too bad it’s not water polo.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  381. I remember when US Sailors were captured by Iran. It wasn’t a situation for them to die over, but I’d have like to have heard an FU out of them.

    steveg (e81d76)

  382. Video shows Ukrainian forces launching rocket-propelled grenades during a firefight in Kharkiv
    Video verified by The Washington Post shows a snapshot of the battle between Ukrainian and Russian forces on Sunday in the city of Kharkiv, about 300 miles east of Kyiv. The battle for control of the country’s second-largest city was marked by intense street fighting.
    ……..
    ……(A)bout 15 seconds into the video, a Ukrainian fighter fires a high-explosive, antitank PG-7 warhead from a shoulder-fired rocket-propelled grenade launcher, according to a review of the footage by Mark Hiznay, associate director of the arms division of Human Rights Watch. The soldier fires two additional rockets from the launcher, identified as an RPG-7, over the next 30 seconds.

    Other videos verified by The Post show a line of damaged, abandoned Russian military vehicles, identified by the letter Z painted on the back door, in the same area.……
    #######

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  383. Radegunda (c970ff) — 2/27/2022 @ 12:03 pm

    “Our policy is whatever Trump wants.”

    That;s true of any president’s foreign policy, except that Trump wasn’t going through reglar channels, and also changed the policy without formally changing it, and was heading toward violating a law, and the policy was wrong.

    And the official policy had the support of almost everybody in Congress. As soon as it became known, Trump had to reverse himself.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  384. Russian citizens are protesting Putin’s war, at risk of arrest. Belarusians citizens are protesting Putin’s war, at risk of arrest.
    And here’s this:

    Belarusian lieutenant colonel addressed the military. “Our boys are now sitting in the woods of Belarus, probably preparing to attack Ukraine. Some won’t come home alive. This is not our war. Find a way not to follow criminal orders. Sometimes saying “no” takes the most courage.”

    And then, on Russian state TV:

    “Our submarines alone can launch more than 500 nuclear warheads, which guarantees the destruction of the US and NATO for good measure. The principle is: why do we need the world if Russia won’t be in it?”

    Of course, no one has said that Russia shouldn’t exist.

    Basically the whole civilized world is against Putin’s aggression and mad nihilism — not against the Russian people in general. But here in America, there are people who will condemn Joe Biden, and millions of their fellow Americans, more harshly than they will criticize Putin.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  385. @383. We all die; but the Ides of March would do… ‘bada-bing.’ 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  386. And to think for four years we were worried about erratic Trump having the nuclear codes when we should have been checking in with Putins list of prescriptions.

    steveg (e81d76)

  387. @384. Prattle. The objective is to hurt them – not hold “leverage” over them.

    Sink the yacht. Take the cannoli.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  388. That;s true of any president’s foreign policy, except that Trump wasn’t going through reglar channels,

    That was my point. And not only was Trump not going through regular channels; he was obviously putting his self-interest first.

    Trump always puts Trump first.

    It’s one thing for a party to say “We respect the foreign policy of our president.” It’s rather different for a whole party to line up behind a profoundly selfish man and say “Whatever he wants is good and righteous.”

    Republicans went well beyond the principle that a president makes foreign policy. They embraced Trump’s own aggressively selfish understanding of right and wrong, and turned it into their definition of patriotism.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  389. Belarusian lieutenant colonel addressed the military. “Our boys are now sitting in the woods of Belarus, probably preparing to attack Ukraine. Some won’t come home alive. This is not our war. Find a way not to follow criminal orders. Sometimes saying “no” takes the most courage.”

    Hopefully for his sake they’ll just shoot him, skip the torture, beatings and family members.

    I remember when that woman, so brave, flipped of Trump in FLA. This Belarus person above has/had balls

    steveg (e81d76)

  390. @384. =yawn= Brady/Belichick were winners; New England sucks.

    Figure it out, AJ.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  391. I think Biden is being pushed, this time, in the direction of strong measures against Putin by the Europeans,

    And you thought, maybe, that a desire for action in concert with allies could only make the U.S. position weaker.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  392. It must be rough being DCSCA just now. The poker player’s bluff has been called. It happens to all gamblers.

    https://www.ft.com/content/d01db87b-1e5a-49dd-bc75-4014d91dbd12

    It doesn’t mean the situation isn’t dangerous. It just doesn’t mean that the bad guys are going to get the automatic W they were expecting. And Xi gets a lesson on how Taiwan might go.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  393. Russian sanctions news:

    UPS and FedEx halt shipments into Russia and Ukraine

    More European nations ban Russian flights from their airspace

    Ahead of an announcement from European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, Germany said it would ban Russian aircraft and flight operators starting at 3 p.m. Sunday. It joined Italy, Norway, France, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Iceland, Belgium, Ireland, the Netherlands, Spain and North Macedonia, which indicated on Sunday that they would move to close their airspace to Russian flights.
    ……….
    Also on Sunday, Canada’s minister of transport, Omar Alghabra, said: “Effective immediately, Canada’s airspace is closed to all Russian aircraft operators. We will hold Russia accountable for its unprovoked attacks against Ukraine.”

    E.U. to close airspace to Russian planes, ban Kremlin-backed media
    ……….

    Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, said at a news conference in Brussels that E.U. airspace will now be closed to all Russian owned, registered or controlled aircraft, including “the private jets of oligarchs.”

    The bloc of 27 nations plans to ban media outlets Sputnik, Russia Today and their subsidiaries so that they can “no longer spread lies to justify Putin’s war,” she said.

    “For the first time ever, we will finance the purchase and delivery of weapons and other equipment for a country that is under attack,” she added.

    ……..
    BP says it will ‘exit’ its $14 billion stake in Russian oil giant Rosneft over Kremlin invasion of Ukraine

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  394. Some people on the far right appear to be firmly dug in on these propositions:

    The people I disagree with politically are always bad and wrong about everything.
    The mass media always lie.
    Globalism is the worst of evils.

    So when the mass media report on Putin’s aggression, and when their political opponents decry Putin’s aggression, and when most of the civilized world of nations protest Putin’s aggression — the reflex of the far right is to say it’s all a big hoax, a lie, a conspiracy against everything they hold dear.

    If most of the world stands with Ukraine against Putin, by golly they’re gonna stand with Putin.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  395. Russia confirms casualties on its side but offers few details
    ………
    “Unfortunately, some of our comrades have been killed or injured,” Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov said at a news briefing, according to Interfax, an independent news agency in Russia. Konashenkov had said late last week that no Russian troops were killed in the attack, the Associated Press reported, contradicting statements from authorities in Ukraine.

    Konashenkov did not specify how many Russian troops were hurt but said “our losses are many times less than eliminated nationalists, as well as the losses among servicemen of the Ukrainian armed forces,” according to Interfax. He also accused Ukrainian forces of torturing Russian soldiers but did not provide evidence.
    ………
    I would believe the accusations of torture, especially if the Russians prisoners are held by the Territorial Defense forces. There is no love lost between the two. I have no problem with that.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  396. And Xi gets a lesson on how Taiwan might go.

    Appalled (1a17de) — 2/27/2022 @ 1:11 pm

    Yes. That’s the best thing about this.

    Dustin (47bccc)

  397. Rip Murdock (d67a00) — 2/27/2022 @ 1:23 pm

    Konashenkov did not specify how many Russian troops were hurt

    Did he describe where in Ukraine they had been?

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  398. @397. Pfft.

    Ukraine war news from February 25: Kyiv suburbs breached, Russian forces face resistance, Zelensky warns Russia will ‘storm’ capital

    https://www.ft.com/content/93554a7e-f974-49fc-85ba-c111d253b002

    “Deal.” – Sylvester “Pardner” Newell [Clint Eastwood] ‘Paint Your Wagon’ 1969

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  399. Crypto Exchange Binance Says It Is Taking Steps Against Sanction Targets
    The world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange Binance said it is working to take action against those who have been sanctioned by Western countries following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

    “We have assembled a dedicated global compliance task force, including world-renowned sanctions experts, and are taking the steps necessary to ensure we take action against those that have had sanctions levied against them, while minimizing impact to innocent users,” a Binance spokesman said.
    ……..
    Washington is considering targeting Russia’s access to cryptocurrencies as an area for further sanctions, though analysts say crypto’s decentralized nature would make it difficult to completely cut off digital assets.
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  400. Did he describe where in Ukraine they had been?

    Check the link I posted.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  401. Rubio and Warner imply Putin’s ill with their ‘I know something but I can’t tell you’ tease; POTUS tells the world Vlad’s intention is to reconstitute some semblance of the USSR. Somebody is seeking attention, somebody is deliberately misleading- or nobody knows what the hell they’re talking about.

    Film at 11.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  402. Were I in the Polish government, I’d be working on a national “training in arms” program for all able-bodied adults, along with a high school marksmanship and tactics class.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  403. And Xi gets a lesson on how Taiwan might go.

    Some small differences, such as Taiwan being an island. Hard to send them arms or remove refugees.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  404. nobody knows what the hell they’re talking about.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5) — 2/27/2022 @ 1:42 pm

    this one is from today. The other quotes are from a few days ago. I think it’s hilarious.

    DCSCA getting so upset that other people are overstating their knowledge about what’s really going on… Hilarious.

    Look man, you backed the bad guys too many times and I know in your head this is justified because of Reaganomics or whatever, but … I’m just here for the laughs.

    Relax; they’re sh-tting themselves in Ukraine, as well.

    … and Putin smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5) — 2/20/2022 @ 1:19 pm

    Yeah Putin is very happy with this situation and Ukraine is paralyzed with fear.

    Gold is at $1900/oz; Oil at $92/bbl… and both climbing…. very good for the Biden family investment portfolio. Doesn’t hurt Vlad’s either. 😉

    … and the Military Industrial Complex smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5) — 2/20/2022 @ 1:28 pm

    Dang, it’s all a lie that Ukraine will be invaded, and in fact Biden’s just saying that to get rich. Good info DCSCA. We don’t have to worry about Putin, and this is really all a lie.

    If Ukranians are stupid enough to blow up their own homes, businesses and infrastructure using other people’s weapons– until they run out- so be it. Invest in Kellogg’s: PopTarts are a standard issue in food parcel airdrops.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5) — 2/20/2022 @ 5:15 pm

    If you have the spine to stand up for yourself, you are stupid. I take it you weren’t digging a lot of foxholes in your 20s.

    They’ll put up a ‘token resistance’ for show- with other people’s munitions of course; and then go ‘French.’ Unless they’re stupid enough to destroy their own homes, businesses and infrastructure– in which case they deserve to be occupied. They still have to live there when the soil softens, the smoke clears and the wheat grows in the summer sun. Ukraine has been used and occupied as a doormat plenty of times over their history. Who frigging cares; it’s not a problem for meddling Americans- who’ve over just 100 years have bailed out Europe three times: in two world wars and through a Cold War. 21st Century America can’t even manage their own southern border– so they’re suddenly worried about Ukraine? Who cares. Putin will never attack a NATO Europe; they’re his BEST energy customers. And what did NATO’s Germany send them brave Ukranians? German helmets. “Heil” frigging ironic.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5) — 2/17/2022 @ 2:41 pm

    DCSCA, good prediction. Your new complaints that people don’t know what they are talking about really inspire me.

    The U.S. deserves a good swift kick in the azz. We’re nearly 25 years into the 21st century already and America still has got OLD politicians in authority with 20th century mindsets still babbling about scenarios akin to World War II– which ended nearly 80 YEARS AGO. Our political class is ancient and perpetuated by two major parties clinging to power while increasingly out of touch with the electorate yet reactive, impotent, and increasingly incompetent, at managing events coming at them in the fast-changing world around them.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5) — 2/14/2022 @ 12:37 pm

    I’m Bill Ayers and I approve this message.

    Dustin (47bccc)

  405. Some small differences, such as Taiwan being an island. Hard to send them arms or remove refugees.

    Kevin M (38e250) — 2/27/2022 @ 1:56 pm

    Another difference is while I think sanctions will hurt them more than they expected, it’s not like we are taking away Russia’s thriving export economy. oil is fungible and they will still sell it, and Russia’s haves will still have.

    But China needs their export economy, and they see that the risks are extremely high. The bitterly divided world is coming together on this kind of thing. Taiwan is a hell of a lot more sympathetic than Ukraine is, too.

    Dustin (47bccc)

  406. From February,2020, two years ago:

    Vladimir Putin ‘underwent surgery for cancer in February’ claims political analyst who also said the Russian leader had Parkinson’s disease

    -Valery Solovei, a prominent critic of Putin, claims the Russia leader had cancer
    -Solovei says Putin had surgery in February, source adds it was abdominal cancer
    -It comes after Solovei also claimed that 68-year-old Putin has Parkinson’s
    -Critic added that Putin is grooming daughter Katerina Tikhonova as successor

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8970989/Vladimir-Putin-underwent-surgery-cancer-February-critic-claims.html

    Interesting piece.

    But have a shot of vodka: ‘moose or squirrel’ Katerina is no Natasha Fatale, dahling.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  407. I know that the original PDF of the July 25, 2019 Trump Zelensky ohone call that was posted on whitehouse.gov in 2019 is still available somewhere (all the files from the Trump Administration are archived) but I forgot the main URL and Google doesn’t govr it to mr quickly or easily.

    However the transcript id also here:

    https://www.npr.org/2019/09/25/764052120/read-transcript-of-president-trumps-call-with-ukraine-s-leader

    I had forgotten, but in this calll Zelensky actually pretty much agreed to investigate Biden, so if that was why Trump was withholding aid, he should have been satisfied:

    The President: Good because I heard you had a prosecutor who was very good and he was shut down and that’s really unfair. A lot of people are talking about that, the way they shut your very good prosecutor down and you had some very bad people involved. Mr. Giuliani is a highly respected man. He was the mayor of New York City, a great mayor, and I would like him to call you. I will ask him to call you along with the Attorney General. Rudy very much knows what’s happening and he is a very capable guy. If you could speak to him that would be great. The former ambassador from the United States, the woman, was bad news and the people she was dealing with in the Ukraine were bad news so I just want to let you know that.

    The other thing, there’s a lot of talk about Biden’s son, that Biden stopped the prosecution and a lot of people want to find out about that so whatever you can do with the Attorney General would be great. Biden went around bragging that he stopped the prosecution so if you can look into it… It sounds horrible to me. [missing wordds is probably Trump saying he heard a tape of Biden. That would be from the January 23, 2018 appearance before the Council on Foreign Relations]

    President Zelenskyy: I wanted to tell you about the prosecutor. First of all, I understand and I’m knowledgeable about the situation. Since we have won the absolute majority in our Parliament, the next prosecutor general will be 100% my person, my candidate, who will be approved by the parliament and will start as a new prosecutor in September. He or she will look into the situation, specifically to the company that you mentioned in this issue. The issue of the investigation of the case is actually the issue of making sure to restore the honesty so we will take care of that and will work on the investigation of the case. On top of that, I would kindly ask you if you have any additional information that you can provide to us, it would be very helpful for the investigation to make sure that we administer justice in our country

    with regard to the Ambassador to the United States from Ukraine as far as I recall her name was Ivanovich. It was great that you were the first one who told me that she was a bad ambassador because I agree with you 100%. Her attitude towards me was far from the best as she admired the previous President and she was on his side. She would not accept me as a new President well enough.

    The President: Well, she’s going to go through some things. I will have Mr. Giuliani give you a call and I am also going to have Attorney General Barr call and we will get to the bottom of it. I’m sure you will figure it out. I heard the prosecutor was treated very badly and he was a very fair prosecutor so good luck with everything. Your economy is going to get better and better I predict. You have a lot of assets. It’s a great country. I have many Ukrainian friends, their [sic] incredible people. ….

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  408. @409, Pfft. Poor Dustin. A youngater of the video toy instant everything age. It’s a conflict that’s just 96 hours old, child.

    It took six weeks for a blitzkrieging Germany to secure and occupy France against military and civil resistance. And, of course, there’s this:

    The Battle of Baghdad, also known as the Fall of Baghdad, was a military invasion of Baghdad that took place in early April 2003, as part of the invasion of Iraq. Three weeks into the invasion of Iraq, Coalition Forces Land Component Command elements, led by the U.S. Army 3rd Infantry Division moved into Baghdad. The United States declared victory on April 14, and President George W. Bush gave his Mission Accomplished Speech on May 1.

    ‘Course, it took 20 years to get into, flee and lose Afghanistan to the Taliban. Put your toys away, Dustin.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  409. “Figure it out, AJ.”

    Sorry, I don’t speak insane.

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  410. BTW Dustin, lest you forget:

    “Because Putin knows if I am president of the United States, his days of tyranny and trying to intimidate the United States and those in Eastern Europe are over. I’m going to stand up to him. He’s a bully…” – Joe Biden

    But you and Ukraine can rest easy: Sean Penn has landed and has the situation well in hand. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  411. @414. AJ??? You type it well enough. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  412. Dustin; lest you forget:

    Corruption in Ukraine

    Corruption is widespread in Ukrainian society. In 2012 Ernst & Young put Ukraine among the three most-corrupt nations of the world—alongside Colombia and Brazil. In 2015 The Guardian called Ukraine “the most corrupt nation in Europe”. According to a poll conducted by Ernst & Young in 2017, experts considered Ukraine to be the ninth-most corrupt nation in the world. According to the Transparency International’s Corruption Perceptions Index, Ukraine ranked 117th out of 180 countries in 2020, ranking the second lowest in Europe, after Russia. [That puts them down in a league w/Zambia, Mexico, Nepal, Bolivia, Kenya, Pakistan…]

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corruption_in_Ukraine

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  413. Look man, you backed the bad guys too many times and I know in your head this is justified because of Reaganomics or whatever, but … I’m just here for the laughs.

    Dustin (47bccc) — 2/27/2022 @ 2:03 pm

    This whole post is beautiful.

    You know, sometimes I miss ol’ DS-CSA’s ramblings. He’s your one-stop shop for semi-eloquent, way-too-self-confident ramblings. Should I unblock him?

    [ponders]

    Nah…

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  414. Taiwan is a hell of a lot more sympathetic than Ukraine is, too.

    Geostrategically, Ukraine is of little importance, but Taiwan has half the world’s first-line fabs (the other half is in South Korea). Intel hopes to return to glory soon, after a sea change in management (think MS post-Balmer), but right now they aren’t the best.

    China cannot buy the tools to make modern chips. They can might quite a few things, but there is a wall down around 10nm (the one Intel hit) and you need special new equipment to get past it, and it is embargoed to disfavored countries like China.

    Now, they could try taking Taiwan to get TSMC and their supply-chain, but that’s a pretty brutal corporate takeover. And I think that we would be unwilling to let them have that tech, since it is of extreme military value.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  415. @419. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corruption_Perceptions_Index

    Taiwan is certainly less corrupt. Check it out. This is an interesting index.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  416. The most intriguing development over the past 30 hours has been Germany flipping on their long term policy toward Ukraine. Per Yahoo:

    ‘Germany will send 1,000 anti-tank weapons and 500 Stinger missiles to Ukraine, marking a complete reversal in Berlin’s restrictive arms export policy, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz announced Saturday. Germany has for months come under intense criticism for its response to Russia’s aggression toward Ukraine. The government said its “historical responsibilities” prevented it from shipping arms to conflict zones, and had previously blocked other NATO allies from transferring German-origin weapons to Ukraine.’

    Given Germany’s heavy dependence on Russian energy resources, why the sudden policy flip? What have they been promised or guaranteed from the U.S. and/or the other NATO members? Someday, we’ll find out.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  417. One of the most interesting inter-racial marriages is William Cohen’s.

    Cohen filed for divorce from his first wife, Diana Dunn, on February 15, 1987. On February 14, 1996, Cohen and Janet Langhart[30] were married. Janet had refused multiple proposals due to concerns about potential reactions in Senate reelection campaigns of an interracial marriage. Langhart is a former model, Boston television personality, and BET correspondent. She was known as the “First Lady of the Pentagon” during Cohen’s tenure as Secretary.

    Together the two of them have written a memoir, “Love in Black and White”

    And then there are Clarence, Mitch, and Jeb, among many others.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  418. Since DCSCA/DCCCP is fascinated by the Mafia in Russia and the fictional Mafia here in the United States, let me recommend to him this book by Jimmy Breslin.

    It’s the somewhat fictionalized account of an incompetent Mafia guy, Joey Gallo. (Oddly enough, Gallo was pleased by the movie and, perhaps the book, even though they depict him as an incompetent thug. But he got more attention, and for him that was the main thing.)

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  419. This is an informative thread on the Russian military, which doesn’t consider the large-scale worldwide blowback against Putin.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  420. I read that book when I was a kid, Jim. The air raid siren under the bed. And the Water Buffalo always looking for a woman with a baby to give him cover in case somebody tried to gun him in the street. Those two things still stick in my mind.

    nk (1d9030)

  421. @423. Omerta, Jim.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  422. Over at my tiny blog, I got a report from a liberal Wisconsin guy who’s currently in Germany…

    I can almost smell it from here. I’m about 600 miles west of Lviv.

    I can tell you from speaking to German and Russian friends that this is a “Wende” – a changing of eras, from one where this type of aggression was unthinkable to one in which it is a fact of life.

    My Russian friend believes that the most draconian sanctions are necessary. He sees his country being lost to an authoritarian, but the truth is that many do support Putin and they need to feel the pain as well. That’s my Russian friend talking.

    Germans are shocked and appalled. One friend described this to me as a “day after” type moment, when you know everything has changed. He gave a recent example of the election of Trump: that a known and proud criminal and liar would be wholeheartedly elected by voters. Now the day after the invasion: that we are at the mercy of authoritarians, and our institutions will not stop him – because western democratic institutions (finance, politics) are themselves corrupted by the money that is flowing around the globe, laundered here in Germany and in London and Zurich and NYC.

    Anyways, just a quick note from somewhere a bit closer to the action.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  423. DC, Ukraine is now less corrupt than Russia, so that’s casus belli to invade Russia, no?

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  424. @428. Not by much. Check the index.

    Capone vs. Moran. Remember what happened to the fellas who got caught in the middle of that in another February some years ago.

    _____

    @427. ‘My Russian friend believes that the most draconian sanctions are necessary.’

    So you got ‘the word from closer to the action’:

    Sink the yacht. Take the cannoli.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  425. Keep the yacht, leverage the oligarchs and, if that fails, I have a friend in the yacht brokerage biz.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  426. @430. Paul, the objective is to hurt the yacht owner, not save the yacht. That’s the whole message of the sanctions.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  427. The American Trucker thing is lame.

    mg (8cbc69)

  428. 1000 – 1 odds on the Kona coast there is an oligarch with patrol boats around his yacht. And a helicopter ready to go.

    mg (8cbc69)

  429. Paul, the objective is to hurt the yacht owner, not save the yacht.

    Yes, which can done by leveraging the owner or selling it off if he doesn’t cooperate. I think you’re a little too fixated on the Godfather. Too bad there isn’t a good film on Sun Tzu for you to obsess on.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  430. Part of psy-ops is defeatism but another part is to make people bored with the whole thing.

    nk (1d9030)

  431. @434. No. The hurt is sinking his yacht. You just don’t get it: the message you send is what is of value to him is of absolutely no value to you.

    Hence the horse head in the bed.

    Mary Poppins sanctions or Tony Soprano sanctions; too bad you’re slow in realizing who you’re dealing with. They’ve already sent the message that they’ll kill what you value without hesitation.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  432. I’ve been having good luck with ADIEU and FROST, in that order, as my starter words on Wordle lately.

    nk (1d9030)

  433. @435. Part of psy-ops is defeatism but another part is to make people bored with the whole thing.

    CNN leads media coverage of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

    In two harrowing moments of coverage aired just minutes apart, CNN showed why it remains TV’s gold standard for fast-breaking international news.

    https://www.poynter.org/commentary/2022/cnn-leads-media-coverage-of-russias-invasion-of-ukraine/

    When they go back to programming silly documentaries and cooking shows, you’ll know the ratings spike has subsided and the boredom has been re-established.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  434. Tony Soprano put a horse head in a bed?

    Kevin M (38e250)

  435. @439. “Family Values” Kevin.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  436. Charlie Kirk has written one of the most foolish, self-serving, hypocritical, illiterate, and counterproductive columns I’ve read in a good long while…. Specifically, Kirk objects to what he describes as the “one ‘substantive evil’” that “Americans can all agree to prevent: worshiping Satan.”

    Foolish indeed. Charlie Kirk is siding with ISIS.

    The Yazidis have been accused of being devil worshippers. Daniel Patrick Moynihan spoke about that, saying that it was like countries in the United Nations supporting Communist countries – he said they felt it was more important to stay on their good side – but he may not have quite understood their religion.

    https://www.vox.com/2014/8/8/5982421/yazidis-yezidis-iraq-crisis-bombing

    owever, in Yazidi theology, God forgave the disobedience. He saw it as a sign of devotion, and elevated Malak Tawous to the head of the angelic order….You might see that there’s this resemblance, and if you don’t understand that God forgave the angel, then you can say that they worship what we call the devil,” Maisel says. “But they don’t even have a hell. There’s no concept of heaven and hell.”

    https://www.brookings.edu/blog/markaz/2014/10/14/satans-slaves-why-isis-wants-to-enslave-a-religious-minority-in-iraq

    Can Satanists be enslaved? That’s one of the questions the Islamic State put to its religious scholars before the group conquered Sinjar, Iraq in August. Sinjar is home to the Yazidi religious minority that many Muslims wrongly accuse of devil worship.

    The Islamic State’s scholars answered affirmatively, arguing that Islamic law permitted the Islamic State to enslave Yazidi women on the grounds that they were mushriks (polytheists) and not members of any protected religion mentioned in the Qur’an.

    .

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  437. Hey, Tony, the 00’s called. They want their memes back.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  438. 412. correction

    Acrually, Zelensky did not promise to investigate the Bidens in his call – he promised to investigate Burisma, which was legitimate and also said they would appreciate any information the u.S. government had

    (but they later didn’t, even though Burisma was otherwise the top priority, because, Zelensky said to his aaaiciates, Ukraine needed bipartidan support in the United States

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/ukraine-president-holds-back-on-probe-linked-to-impeachment-inquiry-11575490990

    For the Zelensky administration, Burisma and the allegations around it have become so wound up in U.S. politics that it has decided to hold off taking any actions for now, fearing proceeding would damage Ukraine’s bipartisan support in Washington, according to officials and other politicians.

    “Burisma has become so political, that unlike other similar situations, upholding the rule of law has its costs,” said Igor Novikov, adviser to Mr. Zelensky on U.S. affairs.

    Progress has also stalled around efforts by the country’s new prosecutor-general, appointed by Mr. Zelensky in August, to review more than a dozen previously closed investigations into Burisma owner Mykola Zlochevsky and other wealthy, politically connected businessmen.

    At stake for Mr. Zelensky—and Ukraine—is continued military and diplomatic backing from the U.S. as the country fights a war against Russian-backed separatists in the east of the country and courts international investment for its economy.

    Ukrainian politicians, including the lawmakers seeking the investigation, say Mr. Zelensky doesn’t want to alienate U.S. Democrats, given that the country has received bipartisan support. They also say Mr. Zelensky remains wary of crossing Mr. Trump, who has criticized Ukraine’s corruption and temporarily suspended nearly $400 million in assistance to Ukraine this summer until congressional pressure forced its release…..

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  439. Screw Tony Soprano. This is the kind of negotiation we need these days. Beth Dutton, Yellowstone, Episode 1:

    Beth: We’re just asking you to suspend the dividend.

    >> And kill the stock!

    Beth: What do you think’s gonna happen when I dump our 20% share tomorrow morning? I’ll tell you what. The stock will drop below the threshold, SEC will suspend trading, and every creditor you have will file on you. Your company will be chapter 11 by Friday, and since we’re your largest creditors, I can promise you there’ll be no negotiating then. I will be CEO of IL Energy by Monday. I will fire every f*cking employee. Then I will sell your leases and equipment to Chevron for pennies on the dollar, and you, buddy, you will have the unique distinction of being the only drilling company to go bankrupt in the largest oil boom of the last century. Won’t that look good on a résumé?

    >> I started this company in my garage.

    Beth: That’s where it’s gonna end up if you don’t suspend the dividend and allow us to assume management. Don’t look at him. You’re dealing with me now. So what’s it gonna be? Are we restructuring your company tomorrow or killing it?

    ===========

    “I don’t need tough guys. I need more lawyers.”
    –Michael Corleone, Godfather III.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  440. I got stuck twice in Wordle – couldn’t think of any words that fit the pattern, and didn’t want to deliberately guess any wrong letters. But there’s no other way to proceed.

    On one I know it is DO.G. but not DOUGH or DOLLY

    In another I have:

    TEARS – E is in there somewhere – No T A R or S

    BLOKE E is in the last place, and there’s an O – at least one

    I can think of ROUTE but there’s no T and no R. No L, B or K either. Where could the O go? Bloke was actually my third choice but the second choice just eliminated more letters. I think H was one of the letrers eliminated,

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  441. Paul: “I think you’re a little too fixated on the Godfather. Too bad there isn’t a good film on Sun Tzu for you to obsess on.”

    This gave me a good chuckle

    AJ_Liberty (3cb02f)

  442. It’s incredible to think that Putin has been stymied by a guy who played the piano with his dick. By a guy who danced with his troupe in high heels and leather pants. By a guy who appeared on their version of Dancing With The Stars.

    Maybe Vlad needs a bigger table.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  443. #447
    That’s gotta sting Vladimir.

    We used to worry about loose cannon Trump, but Vlad is likely to slam a 4.5 liter of Vodka and fully commit.
    There’s an outside chance Vlad does anything right now to stay in power and not loose face.
    If his army gets beat by Ukraine, he’ll have to spin it as Russia vs. NATO or face a coup.

    Very dangerous week to come. Hoping he chooses wisely

    steveg (e81d76)

  444. Samuel Ramani:

    Vladimir Putin has killed Swedish neutrality and German pacifism in a single weekend.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  445. I mean, in all fairness the ability to dance, even in leather pants and heels, does not preclude the ability to shoot a gun. The Duke of Wellington insisted that all of his officers learn to waltz well.

    Nic (896fdf)

  446. Putin Declares a Nuclear Alert, and Biden Seeks De-escalation

    ……… President Biden and his aides had a choice.

    They could match the move and put American forces on Defcon 3 — known to moviegoers as that moment when the Air Force rolls out bombers, and nuclear silos and submarines are put on high alert. Or the president could largely ignore it, sending out aides to portray Mr. Putin as once again manufacturing a menace, threatening Armageddon for a war he started without provocation.
    ………
    ……. (T)o many in the administration, who spoke on Sunday on the condition of anonymity, it was a stark reminder of how quickly the Ukraine crisis could spin into a direct superpower confrontation — and how it may yet do so, as Mr. Putin tests how far he can go and threatens to use the ultimate weapon to get there.

    And his outburst highlighted anew the question, coursing through the American intelligence community, about the state of mind of the Russian leader, a man previously described as pragmatic, calculating and cunning. The former director of national intelligence, James R. Clapper Jr., said in public today what some officials have been saying in private since the Russian leader began accusing Ukraine of genocide and claiming it was developing nuclear weapons of its own.

    “I personally think he’s unhinged,” Mr. Clapper said on CNN. “I worry about his acuity and balance.”

    ……… But what made the latest nuclear outburst notable was that it was staged for television, as Mr. Putin told his generals that he was acting because of the West’s “aggressive comments” about Ukraine. Russia’s most senior military officer, Valery Gerasimov, sat stone-faced as Mr. Putin issued his directive, leaving some wondering what he was thinking, and how he might respond.

    Mr. Putin’s citation of “aggressive comments” as a justification for putting one of the world’s largest nuclear arsenals on alert status seemed both disproportionate and puzzling, (said said Graham T. Allison of Harvard University). “It makes no sense.”

    (Allison) said the incident is “adding to the worry that Putin’s grasp on reality may be loosening.”

    Now the question is how General Gerasimov will translate Mr. Putin’s vaguely worded order for “special combat readiness” into action. The answer should be clear in the next day or two.

    A vast nuclear-detection apparatus run by the United States and its allies monitors Russia’s nuclear forces at all times, and experts said they would not be surprised to see Russian bombers taken out of their hangars and loaded with nuclear weapons, or submarines stuffed with nuclear weapons leave port and head out to sea.
    ………
    ……… (The New START Treaty, which expires next year), does not include smaller, tactical weapons designed for battlefield use, a major worry in the current crisis. Just as Mr. Putin claimed last week that the United States had designs to put such weapons on Ukrainian territory — one of his many justifications for the invasion — American officials fear that Mr. Putin’s next move is to put them in Ukraine, if he succeeds in seizing the country, and in Belarus.

    The immediate concern is that a heightened alert level, by design, loosens the safeguards on nuclear weapons, making it more possible that they could be used, by accident or design.

    In recent years, Russia has adopted a doctrine that lowers the threshold for using nuclear arms, and for making public threats of unleashing their powers in deadly atomic strikes.

    …… “It’s verbal saber-rattling. We’ll see where he goes with it. This war is four days old and he’s already made nuclear threats twice” (said Hans M. Kristensen, the director of the Nuclear Information Project at the Federation of American Scientists).
    …………
    Mr. Kristensen ……..said the threats could be empty unless matched with evidence that nuclear weapons are being removed from storage and prepared for action.

    “Unless we see that kind of thing,” Mr. Kristensen said, “it’s rhetoric — it’s madman brinkmanship.”
    ##########

    Putin needs to end his war soon. If the Ukrainians don’t surrender tomorrow, I wouldn’t be surprised if he used his battlefield nukes to end the war while simultaneously cowing NATO. The failure of the US to raise its DEFCON level from 4 to 3 only will encourage Putin further.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  447. NEW: Congress drops mask mandate ahead of Biden’s State of The Union speech on Tuesday

    “Mask wear is now an individual choice option,” the Capitol Attending Physician said.

    Slowly catching up with the science.

    Obudman (a4facc)

  448. NEW: Congress drops mask mandate ahead of Biden’s State of The Union speech on Tuesday

    Can’t have the audience masked up while Biden spikes the political football and declaring victory over COVID.

    Again – amazing how the science and the CDC neatly aligned with the SOTU speech…

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  449. @453 NEW: Congress drops mask mandate ahead of Biden’s State of The Union speech on Tuesday

    Jim Miller hardest hit

    JF (e1156d)

  450. I’m almost done gushing today over Zelenskyy’s performance in this war that was forced on Ukraine, but he’s doing the things that real leaders do, like breaking bread with his troops, and his conference with EU leaders was nothing short of historic, and it paved the way for more sanctions on Putin and more weapons to Zelenskyy.

    As the leaders of the European Union gathered for an emergency summit on Thursday night, momentum was already moving toward imposing tough new sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine.

    But a handful of key leaders, notably including German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, were reluctant to proceed with some of the harshest proposals. Scholz told reporters on the way into the meeting in Brussels that he wanted to focus on implementing sanctions that had already been approved before enacting new ones.

    After a perfunctory debate, the presidents and prime ministers quickly approved sanctions on Russian President Vladimir Putin, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and some of Russia’s biggest banks. Talk of barring Russia from the global financial messaging system known as SWIFT, however, stalled amid skepticism on the part of Scholz and the leaders of Austria, Italy and Cyprus, according to officials familiar with the deliberations who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the sensitive negotiations.

    Then Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky dialed into the meeting via teleconference with a bracing appeal that left some of the world-weary politicians with watery eyes. In just five minutes, Zelensky — speaking from the battlefield of Kyiv — pleaded with European leaders for an honest assessment of his country’s ambition to join the European Union and for genuine help in its fight with the Russian invaders. Ukraine needed its neighbors to step up with food, ammunition, fuel, sanctions, all of it.

    “It was extremely, extremely emotional,” said a European official briefed on the call. “He was essentially saying, ‘Look, we are here dying for European ideals.’” Before ending the video call, Zelensky told the gathering matter-of-factly that it might be the last time they saw him alive, according to a senior European official who was present.

    Just that quickly, Zelensky’s personal appeal overwhelmed the resistance from European leaders to imposing measures that could drive the Russian economy into a state of near collapse. The result has been a rapid-fire series of developments boosting Ukraine’s fight to hold off the Russian military and shattering the limits on European assertiveness in national security affairs.

    The actions culminated on Saturday, when the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and the European Union announced they would bar several major Russian banks from the global financial messaging system known as SWIFT, crack down on Russian oligarchs, and prevent the Russian central bank from bailing out the domestic economy.

    I’m still praying he and his family are staying safe.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  451. oregon is going to still require school kids to wear masks, at least for a few more weeks

    i’ve been told here that masks are good for kids, helps with behavioral issues, comprehension, whatever

    why then would we ever get rid of them?

    JF (e1156d)

  452. @447. ‘It’s incredible to think that Putin has been stymied by a guy who played the piano with his dick. By a guy who danced with his troupe in high heels and leather pants. By a guy who appeared on their version of Dancing With The Stars.”

    No more incredible than the Republican Party being stymied by an orange-haired, NBC reality TV star.

    Welcome to the 21st Century.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  453. @450. I mean, in all fairness the ability to dance, even in leather pants and heels, does not preclude the ability to shoot a gun. The Duke of Wellington insisted that all of his officers learn to waltz well

    ROFLMAOPIP. Brilliant. you can just hear the collective, inquisitive ‘Who?’

    _____

    @451. It’s just a response card played in response to the sudden policy shift by Germany to supply munitions to Ukraine. Given Germany’s heavy dependence on Russian energy resources, why the sudden policy flip? What has Germany been promised or guaranteed from the U.S. and/or the other NATO members? Someday, we’ll find out.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  454. What has Germany been promised or guaranteed from the U.S. and/or the other NATO members? Someday, we’ll find out.

    and

    nobody knows what the hell they’re talking about.

    were written by the same person, on the same day

    🤣

    Dustin (47bccc)

  455. @452/@453 NEW: Congress drops mask mandate ahead of Biden’s State of The Union speech on Tuesday

    Gotta look good for the TeeVee.

    Besides, it would be embarrassing; Russian and Ukranian troops aren’t wearing their masks. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  456. @JF@456 Masks have both advantages and disadvantages. Once the Covid numbers are down, choosing to use or not use them would be a moral neutral. However, I would not be against district requirements that we use them during flu season to reduce flu. According to a study that I believe was linked here? though it could have been somewhere else I frequent, we may have entirely wiped out one of the 4 main strains of flu just with masking and distancing.

    Nic (896fdf)

  457. that the english premier league allowed one of putin’s lap dogs to own one of their top teams, but also to concoct a scheme to hold the team hostage, should be the ultimate embarrassment

    but this is the same league that allows the bush family best buds the saudis to own newcastle

    JF (e1156d)

  458. @462. Sometimes a header is really a penalty kick in the balls.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  459. Nic@461 Masks have both advantages and disadvantages.

    i didn’t hear about any disadvantages

    what are they?

    JF (e1156d)

  460. @JF@464 They aren’t super comfortable and being asked to wear one hurts some people’s feelings.

    Nic (896fdf)

  461. Nic@465 glad to see a truly professional assessment

    JF (e1156d)

  462. @JF@466 You asked for some disadvantages, those are the two main disadvantages for the wider school population.

    Nic (896fdf)

  463. But what made the latest nuclear outburst notable was that it was staged for television

    Which means it was phony.

    Best not to puncture Putin’s balloon here.

    Putin may be put of touch with reality, not because he believes anything he is saying, but because he believes other people might believe it.

    What people, though?

    A oerson would have to be so abysmally ignorant so that he practically doesn’t know the difference between Russia and Belarus. What use is confusing such a person?

    Here are some questions I got asked the other day:

    Is there a war in Ukraine?

    Is Putin a dictator?

    How many people (or soldiers) got killed? (that’s actually a big question)

    How long will the war last?

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  464. Nic- if you’re teaching kids, do they have any reaction in to what’s going on over there?

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  465. Nic@467 i’m sure that’s the case, as opposed to some things i read here that are pulled out of someone’s backside

    JF (e1156d)

  466. @DCSCA@469 I spent the (short) week doing various district trainings for this year’s standardized state testing. ELPAC (English Language testing for English learners) and CAASP (regular standardized English and Math and some grades science) are given in the spring. I wasn’t on site or seeing students last week. I’ll be able to tell you probably Tuesday or Wednesday.

    Nic (896fdf)

  467. ReL masks. It doesn;t muffle speech sometimes? Prevent eatng? Cause someone to breathe back in bad air?

    The advantage is it can keep you warm when it is cold outside,

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  468. @447. Paul, you need a lift:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jkghtyxZ6rc

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  469. Ah, yes! The Pathology Of The Congenitally Malcontent. They whine when they have to wear masks and sneer when they’re told they don’t have to.

    nk (1d9030)

  470. @471. Nic- Hope the planet is still here then. 😉

    Would be interested to hear how the kids are observing and absorbing all this- especially given how so well wired they are to the world today.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  471. Their parents probably had a hard time diapering them, too.

    nk (1d9030)

  472. I see from Da Internets that the Governor of Utah has also ordered the State’s liquor stores to take Russian vodka off their shelves. All three bottles.

    nk (1d9030) — 2/27/2022 @ 5:01 am

    Belated guffaw!

    norcal (5948da)

  473. You’re better at Mormon humor than I am, nk! And I’m a Jack Mormon!

    norcal (5948da)

  474. @Sammy@472 It can muffle speech a little, but not enough to prevent communication.

    California schools primarily are outdoor centered. Most of the spaces are not enclosed or when they are, are courtyards open to the sky so things like recess, lunch, and PE generally are outside with minimal facilities in case of rain. We’ve never had an outdoor mandate at school and the kids have outside eating areas, so eating wasn’t an issue for us. I think back east they had kids eat in shifts in large well ventilated spaces like gyms and multi purpose rooms.

    They studied possible increases in CO2 levels and such and didn’t see any elevated levels, so bad air from masks doesn’t seem to be an issue.

    Nic (896fdf)

  475. Now, Belarus is going to join in on the invasion. It is already widening. Can Poland stay out? Will Russia do to Kyiv what they did to Grozny? Will Ukrainian planes have refuge in the West?

    Will those “Ukrainian” drone strikes continue or even expand? I’m sure that Ukraine owns them (now, suddenly), but who’s to say who flies them, or from where.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  476. Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro refuses to condemn Putin, and says that Brazil will not take sides. From the link:

    In reference to Ukrainian leader Volodymyr Zelenskiy, Bolsonaro said Ukrainians have “placed the hope of their nation in the hands of a comedian.”

    So did the Brazilians, Senhor Presidente. The difference is that the Ukrainians had the good sense to hire a professional.

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  477. Bolsonaro’s from a culture where a culture and a history where torturing women and children makes you a soldier, and I guess he’s proud of that.

    Leviticus (dead27)

  478. @478. Mormon humor? Ohhhh, so that explains Mitt Romney’s refusal to do Saturday Night Live.

    Hilarious! 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  479. Over at DU there is a video analysis of ukraine/russia war part 2 its a tough analysis of the first four days of fighting. Only on the last day (sunday) does the analyst see hope for the ukraines fight against th russkis.

    asset (a9abf1)

  480. So, some sides have been taken.

    For Europe: Ukraine (of course), Turkey
    For Russia: Belarus

    Turkey again reminds Europe that it would like to be part of. Of course, Erdogan is an issue still.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  481. Belarus is going to join in on the invasion.

    What this tells me is that Putin is having internal problems with too many Russian boys dying in Ukraine. So they turn to Belarus. Whether this puts pressure on Ukraine, or just destabilizes Belarus some more is anyone’s guess. Somewhere up above the Belarus opposition leader (who says she was cheated last election (the EU agrees)) had declared herself President and called Lukashenko a traitor for being Putin’s c*ck holster.

    It would be ironic if the final dissolution of the Soviet empire is instigated by the man who thought to beuild it.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  482. Russia has other allies besides belarus. Tucker carlson, MTG, C-pac and david duke.

    asset (bac8e4)

  483. Russia has other allies besides belarus. Tucker carlson, MTG, C-pac and david duke.

    asset (bac8e4) — 2/28/2022 @ 1:51 am

    You left out the Orange Gaslighter.

    norcal (5948da)

  484. And don’t forget – Hunter Biden.

    mg (8cbc69)

  485. Former Attorney General William Barr writes in a new book that former President Donald Trump has “shown he has neither the temperament nor persuasive powers to provide the kind of positive leadership that is needed,” and that it is time for Republicans to focus on rising new leaders in the party.

    “He stopped listening to his advisers, became manic and unreasonable, and was off the rails,” Barr writes in his memoir, per the Times. “He surrounded himself with sycophants, including many whack jobs from outside the government, who fed him a steady diet of comforting but unsupported conspiracy theories.”

    This is the leading GOP nominee….and someone we are repeatedly told to not talk about…well negatively. He should be at 1% and shunned….instead he’s made into a kingmaker….and his odd ramblings featured at CPAC (which really needs to change its name to better match its values). It’s the common story…yet one more Trump advisor…someone who enabled him in some of his worst, recants and gives us the insider skinny. Listen.

    AJ_Liberty (3cb02f)

  486. How long until Israel becomes the issue of the day? One distraction after another to protect Brandon and his sheep.

    mg (8cbc69)

  487. You left out the Orange Gaslighter.

    norcal (5948da) — 2/28/2022 @ 2:22 am

    I don’t think DS-CSA is ora — oh, wait. Gotcha. Never mind!

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  488. Bolsonaro does not even speak Brazilian. He talks to Brazilians in Portuguese.

    nk (1d9030)

  489. What should get more attention here is Putin’s financial meltdown.

    * The central bank raised interest rates from 9.5% to 20%.
    * Massive run over the weekend at Russian ATMs.
    * The ruble has crashed, losing a quarter of its value in mere hours.
    * Putin banned foreigners from selling Russian securities.
    * They’ve ordered exporters to convert into rubles most of their foreign-currency revenues.
    * Their stock exchange is closed for the day.

    But the following is concerning. If this is Putin’s mentality–“If I can’t have her, nobody will”–then he’s more than just “off”.

    Russian state TV: “Our submarines alone can launch more than 500 nuclear warheads, which guarantees the destruction of the US and NATO for good measure. The principle is: why do we need the world if Russia won’t be in it?”

    One other thing: Ms. Calladwadr has an excellent thread on Putin’s information war, worth a full read, which kicked into high gear after his first invasion of Ukraine.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  490. “The principle is: why do we need the world if Russia won’t be in it?”

    The response should be, why would anyone die for Putin’s ambitions? Why should the Russian people stay hostage to his delusions? Break the tie, the world will welcome you back.

    AJ_Liberty (3cb02f)

  491. Well, poor Nietzsche got the blame, but it was a Russian, Ivan Turgenev, who invented Nihilism when Nietzsche was still a teenager. Perfectly understandable, the U.S. national motto is “In God We Trust”, the Russian national motto is “Thank God for vodka to help us put up with this”.

    nk (1d9030)

  492. This whole post is beautiful.

    You know, sometimes I miss ol’ DS-CSA’s ramblings. He’s your one-stop shop for semi-eloquent, way-too-self-confident ramblings. Should I unblock him?

    [ponders]

    Nah…

    Demosthenes (3fd56e) — 2/27/2022 @ 3:06 pm

    If you can laugh it off, DCSCA is clever a lot of the time. I think in the current context it’s harmless (because Ukraine’s propaganda work is excellent, which frankly it needs to be with this adversary). I also miss Happyfeet pre-Trump quite a bit.

    Dustin (150498)

  493. From Carol Leonnig and Phi Rucker’s book: “In fact, Trump had privately indicated that he would seek to withdraw from NATO and to blow up the U.S. alliance with South Korea, should he win reelection. When those alliances had come up in meetings with Esper and other top aides, some advisers warned Trump that shredding them before the election would be politically dangerous. “Yeah, the second term,” Trump had said. “We’ll do it in the second term.”

    This theme of the U.S. withdrawing from NATO was also reported by the NYT via comments from senior administration officials circa 2018. In the context of current events and Trump’s claims at CPAC that NATO is very, very dumb, think about that. I know some here only want to talk about Biden…and it pains them to even hear criticisms of Trump….but the man is dangerous…semi-delusional….and is driving the direction and voice of the GOP. Enough….cut the cord. Demand better.

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  494. As Russian planes face airspace bans, Canada investigates reported Aeroflot violation

    let’s skirt the obvious question: why is biden failing to ban russian flights like other countries already have?

    JF (e1156d)

  495. @498. Yup! Putin lost the the first battle of the Ukraine War on November 8, 2020.

    Under the lipstick of “America First”, Trump would have handed him Ukraine on a silver platter:
    1. No sanctions;
    2. No military aid;
    3. No diplomatic support in the UN or with our allies;
    4. A cowed and demoralized, if not broken up NATO; and
    5. Blocking and obstructing sanctions, military aid, and diplomatic support from other countries at every turn.

    nk (1d9030)

  496. trump threat level back up to red today

    take precautions

    JF (e1156d)

  497. In a way, as a proud Biden voter, I consider myself and the other 81 million Biden voters veterans of the war.

    nk (1d9030)

  498. Kamil Galeev had an excellent thread on Putin’s military, and now he has an excellent thread on how Ukrainian is winning the social media war.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  499. stolen valor is totally within character, mr. 81 million

    JF (e1156d)

  500. At the end of Calladwadr’s thread (linked by Mr. Montagu):

    Putin isn’t just coming for us next. He already has.

    The Russian Orthodox Church, she says, was involved in his information war on the West. Apparently part of his strategy was to encourage a belief among American conservative Christians that their greatest enemy was “liberalism,” i.e. that liberal democracy itself (starting with the Founding) was killing off everything good and holy, and that an autocrat like Putin was the way to save religion and family and morality (not including Christian charity or tolerance, of course).

    This theme of the U.S. withdrawing from NATO was also reported by the NYT via comments from senior administration officials circa 2018.

    Trump said in March 2016 that NATO was obsolete. The next year, he said it wasn’t. (Trumpies can usually find a Trump statement somewhere to “prove” that he really didn’t mean the opposite thing he said at other times.) But he obviously didn’t believe much in international cooperation — nor do the hardcore nat-cons. Which plays right into Putin’s aim to rebuild the Soviet empire.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  501. Apparently part of his strategy was to encourage a belief among American conservative Christians that their greatest enemy was “liberalism,” i.e. that liberal democracy itself (starting with the Founding) was killing off everything good and holy, ……

    That’s what I’ve observed from what nat-cons and Trumpites have written. Calladwadr just mentions specific conservative Christian orgs that were targeted in the influence operation.

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  502. stolen valor is totally within character, mr. 81 million

    Call us Legion for we are many.

    Just doing our duty. None of us claim to be as heroic as the Knight Of The Bone Spurs who fought the VD (sic) during the Vietnam War.

    nk (1d9030)

  503. I think Putin could be moving into a very dangerous place if negotiations do not go his way (I doubt they will. Ukraine has no reason to give much up at this point)
    Putin needs to pull a rabbit out of his ushanka quickly or face a coup from his military and oligarch/russian mafia former friends. He may not survive this blunder of thinking his military was equal to the task because they had their way with Syrian militias

    steveg (e81d76)

  504. Now, Belarus is going to join in on the invasion. It is already widening. Can Poland stay out? Will Russia do to Kyiv what they did to Grozny? Will Ukrainian planes have refuge in the West?

    Will those “Ukrainian” drone strikes continue or even expand? I’m sure that Ukraine owns them (now, suddenly), but who’s to say who flies them, or from where.

    Kevin M (38e250) — 2/27/2022 @ 8:31 pm

    Poland really can’t do anything right now, at least officially, until its borders are legitimately threatened, other than continue to serve as a conduit for small arms and anti-armor ordnance via NATO. This is similar to what happened during the fight against ISIS, when we were working with the GCC countries to get ammunition and supplies to the Kurds around Erbil.

    As for the drone strikes, the probability that this is a modern-day version of Operation Farm Gate is quite high, and they’re being piloted by USAF pilots out of Creech.

    Factory Working Orphan (2775f0)

  505. Belarus approves hosting nuclear weapons, Russian forces permanently

    Belarusians voted Monday to allow the country to host nuclear weapons and Russian forces permanently, results showed, part of a package of constitutional reforms that also extended the rule of leader Alexander Lukashenko.
    ……..
    Central Election Commission head Igor Karpenko said 65.16 percent of referendum participants voted in favour of the amendments and 10.07 percent voted against, Russian news agencies reported.

    According to Karpenko, voter turnout stood at 78.63 percent.
    ………
    The constitutional changes also grant immunity to former leaders for crimes committed during their term in office.
    ……..
    The amendments would reinstate presidential term limits — previously ditched by Lukashenko — to two five-year terms, but they would only apply to the next elected president.

    Were Lukashenko to put himself forward as a candidate for re-election in 2025, he could remain in power for an additional ten years.
    …….
    What a shock!

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  506. I think Putin could be moving into a very dangerous place if negotiations do not go his way (I doubt they will. Ukraine has no reason to give much up at this point)

    The initial talks went nowhere (what do you expect when the lamb is negotiating with a bear). If things continue to go badly Putin will resort to his trump card, using tactical nuclear weapons.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  507. @495. The response should be, why would anyone die for Putin’s ambitions? Why should the Russian people stay hostage to his delusions? Break the tie, the world will welcome you back. The response should be, why would anyone die for Putin’s ambitions?

    A ‘die-hard conservative’ should know that by heart:

    “My country right or wrong.”

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  508. (what do you expect when the lamb is negotiating with a bear)

    and when the bear is still raining rockets down on civilians while negotiating for “peace.”

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  509. On that vote in Belarus:

    You wouldn’t believe it but Belarus says constitutional reform allowing nuclear weapons on its territory passes with 82% of the votes. Here’s my report yesterday from Minsk, where people told me they skipped voting, voted no, or drew penises on the ballot

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  510. Switzerland says it will freeze Russian assets, setting aside a tradition of neutrality.
    ……..
    After a meeting with the Swiss Federal Council, Switzerland’s president, Ignazio Cassis, said that the country would immediately freeze the assets of Russia’s president, Vladimir V. Putin, Prime Minister Mikhail V. Mishustin and Foreign Minister Sergey V. Lavrov, as well as all 367 individuals sanctioned last week by the European Union.

    Switzerland said it was departing from its usual policy of neutrality because of “the unprecedented military attack by Russia on a sovereign European state,” but expressed a willingness to help mediate in the conflict. It also joined European neighbors in closing its airspace to Russian aircraft, except for humanitarian or diplomatic purposes. But said it would evaluate whether to join in subsequent E.U. sanctions on a case-by-case basis.
    ……..
    Swiss national bank data showed that Russian companies and individuals held assets worth more than $11 billion in Swiss banks in 2020. As a hub for the global commodities trade, Switzerland also hosts numerous companies that trade Russian oil and other commodities.
    …….

    Mr. Lavrov, who was scheduled to be in Geneva on Tuesday to address the United Nations Human Rights Council, will no longer make the trip because of the flight ban, Russia’s mission to the United Nations in Geneva said on Twitter.

    LOL!

    When you have lost both Germany and Switzerland, two your largest enablers, you must be doing something wrong.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  511. A ‘die-hard conservative’ should know that by heart:

    “My country right or wrong.”

    Try to keep up. A lot of “conservatives,” or at least right-wingers, have been saying that American’s institutions are mostly all “corrupt” and need to be torn down and replaced, and that more than half of their fellow citizens aren’t actually Americans “in any meaningful sense.”

    The “America First” MAGA god himself said “Our country is corrupt,” and “Our leaders are dumb.” A lot of America-bashing has been going on under the banner of “patriotism.”

    I also saw a super-Trumpy MAGA-head argue that the United States has been a destructive force around the world for decades by “exporting liberalism.”

    Radegunda (c970ff)

  512. @515. But how many ‘assets’ are actually in their names or tracable to same via Swiss institutions- plenty of ways around that. And there’s always the Caymans, etc. But the optics make the Swiss look a lot less cheesy through this.

    It’s horse head in the bed time; the message to send is what is of value to them is of absolutely no value to you.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  513. Paul Montagu (5de684) — 2/27/2022 @ 6:11 pm

    Maybe Vlad needs a bigger table.

    This is all attributed to his fear of Covid.

    Q. Who’s giving him medical advice? And what other kind of bad advice is he getting? The virus circulates throughout a room.

    Or could this be related to a fear of being poisoned or stabbed or shot?

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  514. @516.

    [ ] Hard-hatted

    [ ] Hard-headed

    Choose.

    ‘Hard cheese.” – Raymond Delauney [Terry-THomas] ‘School For Scoundrels’ 1960

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  515. @518.

    Wonder if he realizes the bigger the table he sits at, the smaller he looks. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  516. Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 2/28/2022 @ 9:26 am

    If things continue to go badly Putin will resort to his trump card, using tactical nuclear weapons

    I think maybe that;s why they are going so heavy on the sanctions now. A reversal of previous policy, which was to leave threats for the future. Now they think it makes threats of future sanctions worse for him,, not milder. They want to leave Putin (and the people who might be in a position to remove him) with the thought about how terrible and lasting the sanctions would be if he does that.

    Besides there’s Grozny before that.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  517. A lot of “conservatives,” or at least right-wingers, have been saying that American’s institutions are mostly all “corrupt” and need to be torn down and replaced, and that more than half of their fellow citizens aren’t actually Americans “in any meaningful sense.”

    That’s very Jerry Rubin circa 1968. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  518. Putin had been thinking he has, or could get, as great a chorus outside his country endorsing his every lie, as Stalin did.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  519. @497 Laughoff has been sanctioned, too? 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  520. A lot of “conservatives,” or at least right-wingers, have been saying that American’s institutions are mostly all “corrupt” and need to be torn down and replaced, and that more than half of their fellow citizens aren’t actually Americans “in any meaningful sense.”

    Putin wants to make himself the one person standing up the most for traditional morality – perhaps the one leader who’s not gone crazy..

    https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/24/world/europe/putin-ukraine-speech.html

    They sought to destroy our traditional values and force on us their false values that would erode us, our people from within, the attitudes they have been aggressively imposing on their countries, attitudes that are directly leading to degradation and degeneration, because they are contrary to human nature. This is not going to happen.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  521. “A ‘die-hard conservative’ should know that by heart: “My country right or wrong.””

    Except it isn’t. Next you’ll say there’s no difference between us and an authoritarian state. Your boy Vlad is an authoritarian…it takes guts to say “nyet” and regime change is bloody. We vote people out….and when our system works, they leave peacefully.

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  522. JF: “trump threat level back up to red today”

    Until he’s not on the 2024 ballot, u betcha. For conservatives looking to replace Biden, what’s more important than who will effectively oppose him and lead a coherent conservative agenda? Convincing mainly conservatives here that Biden’s policies are generally inferior….doesn’t seem that important. What am I missing?

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  523. @526. Prattle. Except it is. Own it.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  524. DCCCP: Prattle prattle….except it is ….prattle….Soprano….prattle 1964!…prattle…..genius….prattle…Reaganoptics…prattle….glorious

    A fairly unsophisticated AI could replace you if you need some time outside the senior-care facility

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  525. Paul Montagu (5de684) — 2/28/2022 @ 8:03 am

    Kamil Galeev had an excellent thread on Putin’s military,

    He notes that Putin called it a special operation, and while it may be true that;s what he thinks of doing more, Putin was calling it a special military operation in the Donbass

    Not acknowledging at all that it was taking place outside of a limited zone of conflict.

    and now he has an excellent thread on how Ukrainian is winning the social media war.

    He said that we are seeing numerous pictures of Russian troops, with their locations, but nothing of Ukrainian forces, and this is not the result of censorship or removal by the platforms, which include Telegram, which is, if anything, partial to Russia.

    I discount any of his speculation about 5th column people – any such agents would send information privately and would not post it and he doesn’t offer any explanation as to how they would be removed. He says that people who post pictures of Ukrainians in known locations must be being visited and told they are wrong so any such pictures or video doesn’t last long. (Or they are posted after it is all over).

    The situation is the exact opposite (or you could say the same) like that with the Taliban in Afghanistan. They knew where the defenders were – nobody on our side knew where the invaders (the Taliban) were.

    Here the defenders know where the invaders are, and what they are doing, but the invaders do not know where the defenders are.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  526. WASHINGTON, Feb 28 (Reuters) – Americans should not be worried about nuclear war, U.S. President Joe Biden said on Monday, the day after Russian President Vladimir Putin put Russia’s nuclear deterrent on high alert amid Moscow’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.

    He said this, too: “Because Putin knows if I am president of the United States, his days of tyranny and trying to intimidate the United States and those in Eastern Europe are over. I’m going to stand up to him. He’s a bully…”

    That went well.

    BTW, big sale on bomb shelters, kids: https://www.safecastle.com/pages/falloutshelters

    Remember when everyone was focused on 7.5% inflation, $5/gal., gas, $5 /lb., hamburger, masks battles and Covid- last week?!

    … and Biden smiled.

    “Duck and cover!” – Archer Productions, 1952

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  527. How the American Right Stopped Worrying and Learned to Love Russia
    ………
    The American political right was long associated with Cold War hawkishness. But in recent years the trend has shifted toward fawning praise for autocrats, even those leading America’s traditional adversaries, as well as projecting our own culture wars overseas. Where once Russia and other autocracies were seen as anti-democratic, they have now become symbols of U.S. conservatism — a mirror for the right-wing worldview.
    ……..
    Many of the admirers of the world’s strongmen on the American right appear to believe that the countries each of these men lead are beacons of whiteness, Christianity and conservative values. On Wednesday, conservative commentator Rod Dreher wrote, “I adamantly oppose risking the lives of boys from Louisiana and Alabama to make the Donbass safe for genderqueers and migrants.”

    These comments, from the right, aren’t exactly advancing a new position. In 2018, the political commentator Pat Buchanan said that Mr. Putin and the Belarusian dictator Alexander Lukashenko were “standing up for traditional values against Western cultural elites.” He considered the Belarusian Ministry of Internal Affairs to have told a “moral truth” in asserting that same-sex relationships were “fake.” But those traditional values do not include the freedom to political opposition. ……
    ………
    Russia is neither all white nor all Christian — it is a country that encompasses several regions, religions and ethnicities. Still, it is often perceived as white. The white nationalist Richard Spencer has referred to Russia as “the sole white power in the world.” Matthew Heimbach, a founder of the Traditionalist Worker Party who was involved in the 2017 Unite the Right rally, has expressed admiration for Mr. Putin and ultranationalist European political leaders. “Russia is our biggest inspiration,” Mr. Heimbach told The Times in 2016. “I see President Putin as the leader of the free world.” As The Times reported at the time, this construction of Mr. Putin as a beacon of far-right values began with the ultra-far-right nationalists in Europe and later spread to the United States.
    ………
    ………The Russia, Ukraine, Hungary and Belarus of conservative pundits’ imaginations are just that: imaginings. Avatars. Projections of themselves. The Russians and Ukrainians who are living — and dying — do not factor into the picture.
    ###########

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  528. Populist Embrace of Putin Cools After Ukraine Invasion
    ……..
    Matteo Salvini of Italy’s main anti-immigrant party has worn T-shirts emblazoned with Mr. Putin’s face. Eric Zemmour, a far-right candidate in France’s April presidential elections, once said he dreamed that someone like Mr. Putin would save France. Marine Le Pen of France’s far-right National Rally traveled to the Kremlin to meet Mr. Putin.
    …….
    That admiration is now running up against the reality of Mr. Putin’s forces pouring into Ukraine. Some populists are rushing to distance themselves, branding Mr. Putin’s aggression a setback of historic proportions.

    Others are trying to strike a balance, rejecting Mr. Putin’s actions while acknowledging he has a place in their political heart.

    “I think that everybody has a form of admiration for Mr. Putin, but frankly, I consider that what he’s done is highly reprehensible,” Ms. Le Pen said Friday.

    “No to war, always. Yes to life, always,” Mr. Salvini, leader of Italy’s League party, wrote in a Twitter post Thursday. Mr. Salvini wrote that he “firmly condemns the military aggression” but stopped short of mentioning Mr. Putin by name.

    …….Mr. Putin found ardent allies in Alternative for Germany, a nationalist and anti-Islam group, as well as the Left, a far-left party partially derived from the Communist Party that ruled former East Germany, an erstwhile Soviet dominion, until 1990.

    Both parties toned down their support for the Kremlin as Russia ramped up its forces on the Ukrainian border, and both issued condemnations of the all-out invasion on Thursday.
    ………
    The Left’s floor leader in parliament, Dietmar Bartsch, described the Russia’s bombing raids as “a new level of aggression by Putin that we condemn in the sharpest terms,” adding that “this attack is against international law and cannot possibly be justified.”

    That was a far cry from comments fellow Left legislator Sevim Dağdelen made at a recent rally in Berlin where she accused the U.S. of warmongering and dismissed Ukraine’s position as a “declaration of war against Russia.”
    ……..
    Ms. Le Pen’s party has long had ties with Russia. In 2014, Ms. Le Pen’s party, which struggled to find lenders in France, borrowed 9 million euros, equivalent to $10.1 million, from First Czech-Russian Bank, a now-defunct bank that was based in Moscow, to help fund its campaign for seats in the European Parliament.
    ……..
    On Thursday, Mr. Zemmour changed his tone. “Last night, Russia decided to hit Ukraine even if Ukraine had not attacked it and did not threaten it directly. I unreservedly condemn this use of force,” he said.
    #############

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  529. Environmentalists and the tree huggers sure seems like commies to me. Closing our pipe lines, cutting our oil production and not using nuclear. Throwing money away in wind and solar is dead solid red.

    mg (8cbc69)

  530. ‘Yes, He Would’: Fiona Hill on Putin and Nukes (Interview)
    ……..
    There’s lots of danger ahead, she warned. Putin is increasingly operating emotionally and likely to use all the weapons at his disposal, including nuclear ones. It’s important not to have any illusions — but equally important not to lose hope.
    ………
    At this juncture, if he can, he’s going to go all the way. Before this last week, he had multiple different options to choose from. He’d given himself the option of being able to go in in full force as he’s doing now, but he could also have focused on retaking the rest of the administrative territories of Donetsk and Luhansk. He could have seized the Sea of Azov, which he’s probably going to do anyway, and then joined up the Donetsk and Luhansk regions with Crimea as well as the lands in between and all the way down to Odessa. ……..

    Now, if he can, he is going to take the whole country. We have to face up to this fact. …..
    ……….
    President Putin has said quite explicitly in recent days is that if anybody interferes in Ukraine, they will be met with a response that they’ve “never had in [their] history.” And he has put Russia’s nuclear forces on high alert. So he’s making it very clear that nuclear is on the table.

    Putin tried to warn Trump about this, but I don’t think Trump figured out what he was saying. In one of the last meetings between Putin and Trump when I was there, Putin was making the point that: “Well you know, Donald, we have these hypersonic missiles.” And Trump was saying, “Well, we will get them too.” Putin was saying, “Well, yes, you will get them eventually, but we’ve got them first.” There was a menace in this exchange. Putin was putting us on notice that if push came to shove in some confrontational environment that the nuclear option would be on the table.
    ……..
    The thing about Putin is, if he has an instrument, he wants to use it. Why have it if you can’t? He’s already used a nuclear weapon in some respects. Russian operatives poisoned Alexander Litvinenko with radioactive polonium and turned him into a human dirty bomb……..

    The Russians have already used a weapons-grade nerve agent, Novichok. They’ve used it possibly several times, but for certain twice. ……

    So if anybody thinks that Putin wouldn’t use something that he’s got that is unusual and cruel, think again. Every time you think, “No, he wouldn’t, would he?” Well, yes, he would. And he wants us to know that, of course.
    ………
    Unfortunately, we have politicians and public figures in the United States and around Europe who have embraced the idea that Russia was wronged by NATO and that Putin is a strong, powerful man and has the right to do what he’s doing:…….
    ……..
    …..[T]his is also a full-spectrum information war, and what happens in a Russian “all-of-society” war, you soften up the enemy. You get the Tucker Carlsons and Donald Trumps doing your job for you. The fact that Putin managed to persuade Trump that Ukraine belongs to Russia, and that Trump would be willing to give up Ukraine without any kind of fight, that’s a major success for Putin’s information war. I mean he has got swathes of the Republican Party — and not just them, some on the left, as well as on the right — masses of the U.S. public saying, “Good on you, Vladimir Putin,” or blaming NATO, or blaming the U.S. for this outcome. This is exactly what a Russian information war and psychological operation is geared towards. He’s been carefully seeding this terrain as well. We’ve been at war, for a very long time. I’ve been saying this for years.
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  531. Putin’s war drives Trump’s personality cult to new lows

    Appearing on ABC’s “This Week With George Stephanopoulos,” Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) denounced Putin, expressed prayers and support for Ukraine and denounced President Biden’s approach to the conflict as “half measures.” Then the host asked Cotton what he thought of Trump praising Putin as “very savvy” and calling his strategy this past week “genius.”

    If ever there was a time a Republican could chide Trump, this would be it. Before this past week, die-hard Trumpists were comfortable praising Russia’s president. (“Putin puts Russia first as he should,” Republican Rep. Paul A. Gosar of Arizona tweeted last August.) But as the tanks rolled toward Kyiv this past week, those same voices focused on criticizing President Biden and NATO or downplaying Ukraine’s importance to the United States. Only Trump, even as he condemned the invasion Saturday, still went out of his way to call Putin “smart.”

    But even a light criticism was a line Cotton would not cross. “George, you heard what I had to say about Vladimir Putin,” Cotton replied, without a word about the former president.

    Three more times, Stephanopoulos repeated the question. Three more times, Cotton refused to answer. “George, if you want to know what Donald Trump thinks about Vladimir Putin or any other topic, I’d encourage you to invite him on your show,” the senator said.

    The cowardice is obvious…….
    …….
    …….At this past weekend’s Conservative Political Action Conference, CBS reporter Robert Costa had no trouble finding other Republican lawmakers equally scared to address the former president. “Listen, there’s lots of things present in terms of foreign policy,” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) stammered. “We clearly all ought to be condemning what’s going on in Ukraine,” Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) said — but when asked whether “we” includes Trump, Scott replied, “That’s a decision” for President Trump.
    ……..

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  532. FIFA and UEFA suspend Russia from soccer competitions
    ………
    In a statement, FIFA and UEFA said the ban would remain in place “until further notice.”
    ……..
    European soccer authorities also announced they had canceled their partnership with Gazprom, a natural gas giant that is majority-owned by the Russian government. The company has sponsored the Champions League for many years and the title game this year was to have been played at Gazprom Arena.

    The Russian Football Union, the country’s governing body, said in a statement that “this decision is contrary to the norms and principles of international competition, as well as the spirit of sports. … Such actions are dividing the world sports community, which has always adhered to the principles of equality, mutual respect and independence from politics.”
    ……..
    This decision by FIFA and UEFA aligns with the International Olympic Committee’s recommendation Monday that federations and organizations should not allow or invite Russian or Belarusian athletes or officials to participate in events.
    ……..
    The ban of the men’s national soccer team, though, is the biggest immediate blow to Russian sports. When the 2018 World Cup was staged in Russia, the squad defied the odds and stirred national pride by advancing to the quarterfinals before losing to Croatia in a penalty kick shootout. Its currently ranked No. 35 in the world by FIFA, up from No. 70 before the 2018 tournament.
    ……..
    However, it does free up the Russian men’s and women’s teams to join their compatriots in Ukraine.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  533. We kinda forgot it but in the 17th c principality of Brandenburg centered in Berlin tried to play into a “global maritime power”. They built a navy, established colonies in Caribbean and Africa (red). Super costly, super hubris, super stupid. Consumed tons of resources in vain
    Kamil Galeev
    @kamilkazani
    ·
    Feb 27
    In 18th c. they reconsidered. They sold their colonies, dismantled the navy and started land-maxing. They correctly realised that if they suppress their hubris and minimise the navy (to zero), they can land-max and build the first class army. Which would then unify Germany

    I didn;t know this about early Branderberg colonies.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  534. I have an explanation as to why this is oerceived as so much of awatershed.

    It’s not the first war since 1945.

    But it may have these unique features.

    It is an attack

    1) By a dictatorship

    12 On a democracy, or at least a country with a government that respects human rights and civil liberties

    3) A country which had previously recognized as a fully independent state.

    This last is the most important point.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  535. Covid restriuctions are beiften in NY.

    As of Wed the statewide school mask mandate

    As of MArch 7, the mask mandate in NYC and the vaccine requirement for indoor dining.

    Masks on buses and trains remain as well as vaccines for health care employees and I think NYC

    Cases are at 4% of the level reached at the height of the Omicron wave.employees

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  536. It’s not the first war since 1945.

    It is the largest war between two European countries since 1945.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  537. Memo to Paul/Kevin:

    Ukrainian Man Partially Sinks Yacht of Russian CEO ‘Selling Weapons’

    https://www.newsweek.com/ukrainian-man-partially-sinks-yacht-russian-ceo-selling-weapons-1683067

    But did he take the cannoli? 😉

    =mile-drop=

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  538. I see todays wordle mocked Putins invasion

    steveg (e81d76)

  539. I can’t help but observe in this thread that no equivalencies have been made between the Canadian “totalitarian nation” and the Russian totalitarian nation.
    Invasions not only have consequences, they bring a little clarity.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  540. @mg@534 You know none of that has anything to do with communism, right?

    Nic (896fdf)

  541. @546. You beat me to it.

    lurker (59504c)

  542. Former Attorney General William Barr writes in a new book that former President Donald Trump has “shown he has neither the temperament nor persuasive powers to provide the kind of positive leadership that is needed,” and that it is time for Republicans to focus on rising new leaders in the party. […]

    AJ_Liberty (3cb02f) — 2/28/2022 @ 3:58 am

    Reminds me of my second favorite tweet of the weekend:

    “Bill Barr’s book is unique because the hardcover edition will be released without a spine, but will grow one several years later when it’s profitable to do so.”

    lurker (59504c)

  543. Here was my favorite:

    Zelensky puts to shame the American politicians who cowered for years in fear of being called silly names in incoherent, subliterate tweets.

    Part of why Zelensky’s leadership has been so electric is that here’s a man who is in the gravest possible danger and he’s not afraid – indeed, he seems to grow by the second into the role of standing up to this bully on behalf of principles democracies say they believe in.

    lurker (59504c)

  544. lurker (59504c) — 2/28/2022 @ 5:04 pm

    just when we were celebrating a little clarity around here

    JF (e1156d)

  545. Hilarious comment about Barr, Lurker. I’m going to use that.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  546. Former Attorney General William Barr writes in a new book that former President Donald Trump has “shown he has neither the temperament nor persuasive powers to provide the kind of positive leadership that is needed,” and that it is time for Republicans to focus on rising new leaders in the party. […]

    This is the hardcover edition.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  547. I am more or less convinced that these books, whether Barr’s or Michelle Obama’s, are a way to funnel payola due to account. Which DOJ investigation of which rich person or company never got off the ground, for example.

    I could be wrong, because I don’t know the insides of book publishing. I used to think the same of ginormous speaking fees until I learned that there was a conference industry which demanded speakers, and star power naturally earns higher fees.

    nk (1d9030)

  548. bill barr or putin, who’s more evil?

    JF (e1156d)

  549. Frustrated Putin may order escalation of violence in Ukraine, U.S. officials say

    U.S. intelligence agencies have determined that Russian President Vladimir Putin is growing increasingly frustrated by his military struggles in Ukraine, and may see his only option as doubling down on violence, current and former U.S. officials briefed on the matter tell NBC News.

    As the Russian economy teeters under unprecedented global sanctions and his purportedly superior military force appears bogged down, Putin has lashed out in anger at underlings, even as he remains largely isolated from the Kremlin due in part to concerns about Covid, the sources said.
    ………
    “He is no longer the same cold-blooded, clear-eyed dictator that he was in 2008,” former CIA Director John Brennan told NBC News.

    A Western diplomat said the Russian president appeared to be increasingly insulated and misinformed.
    ………
    Brennan said he shared those worries. Based on the release of accurate intelligence predicting Putin’s pre-invasion moves, Brennan said he believes U.S. and Western intelligence agencies have good insights into his decision-making processes.

    “This was just such a bad, bad miscalculation on Putin’s part,” Brennan said. “He’s never faced something like this before. I’m sure he’s lashing out at advisers, ministers, and others — there may be an emotional spiral here. He’s suffered two black eyes, a bloody nose, and a series of punches. He is being crippled on the battlefield and the financial front, and he has no good options.”
    ………
    Apart from heavy shelling around the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, Russian forces so far have not unleashed the kind of concentrated artillery and bombing campaign they have employed in previous military actions, according to Michael Kofman, an analyst at the CNA think tank. The Russian military is “an artillery army first, and it has used a fraction of its available fires in this war thus far,” Kofman tweeted.

    “Sadly, I expect the worst is yet ahead, and this war could get a lot more ugly,” he said.
    ………
    On the fifth day of its invasion, a U.S. defense official told NBC News the Russian military has not yet been able to achieve air superiority over the country and the Ukrainian military still has significant air and missile defense systems that are viable and available to them. That has surprised most analysts, who believed that the Russians could quickly overwhelm Ukraine’s aging air defense systems.

    But officials said the number of portable air defense missiles Ukraine has accumulated, including shoulder-fired Stinger missiles transferred from Baltic countries, has complicated Russian efforts.
    ……..
    The defense official said the Russian invaders were struggling to maintain stocks of fuel and other supplies, which is one reason their main advance on Kyiv has bogged down. The Russians advanced only about three miles in 24 hours and were still about 15.5 miles outside of central Kyiv, the official said.
    …….
    “The next stage may be the scorched earth tactics that we saw in Chechnya and Syria, which would mean much more death and destruction,” said said Alexander Vershbow, a former ambassador to Russia and former deputy secretary general of NATO from 2012 to 2016, and) now a distinguished fellow at the Atlantic Council. “I don’t think they have too many scruples when it comes to this.”
    ……..
    Putin does have one good option. He could stop.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  550. Putin got away with it in Chechnya and Syria because he was fighting evil Muslim terrorists and all the good people were on his side.

    nk (1d9030)

  551. A Syrian rebel commander’s advice to Ukrainians on how to fight Russian invaders

    Ukrainians have joined a gruesome but not-so-exclusive club — victims of unprovoked Russian military attacks and reported war crimes. The Syrian opposition, which has been attacked by Russian forces for almost seven years, has some advice for Ukrainians on surviving Russian military assaults and fighting invading Russian soldiers. They say that each day Ukrainians resist Russian aggression and fight for their homeland is a victory against Russian President Vladimir Putin.
    ……..
    Abdul-Jabbar Akaidi, a former colonel in Assad’s army who defected in 2012 and joined the opposition, has been fighting Russian invaders for seven years and studying their tactics. He was the commander of the Revolutionary Military Council and a general in the Free Syrian Army in Aleppo while Russia, Assad and Iran carpet-bombed the city and starved its people. ……
    ……..
    …….Ukrainians should know they have a distinct advantage, he said, because they are fighting for something dear to them — their homes and families. The Russian soldiers have no morale because they have no real motivation. Ukrainians also know their land better and can use that knowledge to outmaneuver the Russian forces.

    “The Russian invaders, with as many weapons and numbers they have over you, are still cowards,” he said. “And they are still fighting on land that is not theirs. The land fights alongside you. Remember that.”

    Akaidi said the most effective way to repel advancing Russian forces is to widely deploy Stinger antiaircraft missiles, as well as antitank and anti-armor systems. The Stingers are the most important, because Russian pilots will avoid any area where they see Stingers being used effectively.
    ………
    Ukrainians should also be confident because they have several things the Syrian opposition never had, including a well-trained and well-equipped fighting force led by a democratic government and a strong democratic leader in Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

    “You have a courageous and brave president. You have a courageous and brave leadership. Band around them,” Akaidi said.
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  552. Putin got away with it in Chechnya and Syria because he was fighting evil Muslim terrorists and all the good people were on his side.

    Putin got away with it Chechnya because Chechnya is part of Russia.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  553. It is the largest war between two European countries since 1945.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 2/28/2022 @ 2:45 pm

    The Balkans might beg to differ.

    Factory Working Orphan (2775f0)

  554. If things continue to go badly Putin will resort to his trump card, using tactical nuclear weapons.

    Use of tactical nukes would be a violation of the pledge made by the 5 nuclear-weapons states not to use or threaten to use nuclear weapons against non-nuclear-weapon states-parties to the NPT. Of which Ukraine is one. This is underlined by the Lisbon Protocol.

    I cannot say what the West would do if Putin used nukes in Ukraine, but “nothing” isn’t an option.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  555. Putin got away with it Chechnya because Chechnya is part of Russia.

    That was in dispute I think.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  556. Matt Taibbi admits he made a mistake.

    And deserves credit for that admission. But . . . one has to wonder whether there have been other mistakes from his “reverse chauvinism”, a very common problem among our journalists.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  557. COVID cases are soaring in Ukraine.

    Majority of Ukrainian hospitals could run out of oxygen today as omicron rages: WHO
    COVID cases have increased 555% recently, and oxygen shortage risks thousands of lives.

    And, I am nearly certain, in Russia, as well.

    (I feared this would happen, and am dismayed that my tentative prediction is coming true. Now I am beginning to wonder even more if some of the diseases, for example, typhus, that often accompany wars, will add their misery to this conflict.)

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  558. Jim Miller (406a93) — 3/1/2022 @ 4:47 am

    don’t fret, in case of a nuclear apocalypse covid countermeasures are clearly laid out by your guy demented joe

    JF (e1156d)

  559. Just a reminder that the green agenda is funded by Russia and supported by their propaganda.

    NJRob (d6e0e0)

  560. I appreciate his sentiments, but I disagree with Tim Miller. Don’t ban Russia Today, put a warning label chyron at the bottom of the screen: “Russia Today is owned and controlled by the Russian Kremlin, and registered foreign agent with the US government”, or something like that. I rather our broadcasters be patriots and make their own decisions.
    I’m really disappointed with Dennis Miller for having a gig there. Same with Shatner and Jesse Ventura.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  561. Putin’s bullying worked. Disappointing.

    The European Union’s promise to arm Ukraine with fighter jets to help fight the Russian invasion was seemingly falling apart as of Tuesday morning, with all three nations touted as contributors denying they would be involved.

    Poland, Bulgaria and Slovakia were reportedly on hand to transfer Russian-made MiG-29 and Su-24 fighter jets to Ukraine to bolster the country’s defense, as Kyiv’s combat aircraft are steadily degraded by Russian fighters and anti-aircraft weapons.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  562. NJRob: “Just a reminder that the green agenda is funded by Russia and supported by their propaganda”

    However, not all moves to cleaner energy are communist plots. Certainly the economics need to make sense….and bulk energy storage needs to keep coming down in price, but reducing heat trapping pollutants like CO2 is not exactly sinister. I view it as a long-term problem, not an existential crisis, that will need to be resolved by new technology over time. Politically it will always be a challenge for emerging or poorer economies. But energy independence is a noble goal…and if renewables and nuclear can be part of that solution, I’m not sure why we shouldn’t be for it.

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  563. Paul Montagu (5de684) — 3/1/2022 @ 6:35 am

    Putin’s bullying worked. Disappointing.

    Machiavelli said it is better to be feared than loved, but to be more precise, it is if the fear of doing something is greater or approximately equal to the fear of doing something in particular. Here, Ukraine did nothing or very little against Putin so what happened was if they hold back.

    If the fear is equal both ways, or the fear of doing nothing is stronger than before, greater fear can cause more action to be taken. Example: Accelerating or taking steps for Ukraine to join the EU. Nothing to gain remains for avoiding that. Although it could become a bargaining chip.

    But n the case of the jets, this was probably never nailed down, and Bulgaria and Slovakia would have been giving up the own air defenses

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  564. 565. Yes, in addition to the normal guidance for what to do it the event of a nuclear explosion (could mean an accident) we have:

    US Government Advises People To Stay Six Feet Apart During Potential Nuclear Attack

    And wear masks. Not necessarily because of radioactive dust.

    Last updated February 25.

    Daily Caller citing and linking to https://www.ready.gov/nuclear-explosion

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  565. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-02-28/biden-state-of-the-union-to-cast-climate-bill-as-anti-inflation?sref=BJbCT8Uh

    President Joe Biden will call on Congress to revive stalled climate legislation in Tuesday’s State of the Union address, pitching a package of tax credits and climate spending as a way to battle inflation and save the average American family $500 per year.

    The renewed push comes as Biden’s approval ratings have dropped precipitously, with voters increasingly frustrated by soaring inflation, driven in part by higher energy prices.

    Biden is not expected to explicitly lay out an alternative legislative vision, according a senior administration official who requested anonymity to discuss the preparations. Instead, he’ll describe fighting climate change as integral to boosting middle class finances.

    Congratulations Biden supporters. He’s doubling down on destroying our nation while also getting us one step closer to WW3. Good job.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  566. However, not all moves to cleaner energy are communist plots. Certainly the economics need to make sense….and bulk energy storage needs to keep coming down in price, but reducing heat trapping pollutants like CO2 is not exactly sinister. I view it as a long-term problem, not an existential crisis, that will need to be resolved by new technology over time. Politically it will always be a challenge for emerging or poorer economies. But energy independence is a noble goal…and if renewables and nuclear can be part of that solution, I’m not sure why we shouldn’t be for it.

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74) — 3/1/2022 @ 7:56 am

    We had energy independence 2 years ago. What changed?

    You want nuance? Try not tarring CPAC and conservatives who don’t support the Romney’s and Cheney’s and instead call out those that do.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  567. https://vancouversun.com/news/local-news/coastal-gaslink-site-attacked-overnight-with-millions-in-damage-to-equipment

    Violence has erupted at a Coastal GasLink pipeline work site in Northern B.C., leaving workers shaken and millions of dollars in damage.

    Very early Thursday, just after midnight, Coastal GasLink security called RCMP for help, reporting it was under attack by about 20 people, some wielding axes.

    RCMP Chief Supt. Warren Brown, commander for the north district, called the attack a “calculated and organized violent attack that left its victims shaken and a multi-million dollar path of destruction.”

    Coastal GasLink said in a statement the attackers surrounded some of its workers in a “highly planned” and “unprovoked” assault near the Morice River drill pad site off the forest service road.

    “In one of the most concerning acts, an attempt was made to set a vehicle on fire while workers were inside,” said the company in a statement. “The attackers also wielded axes, swinging them at vehicles and through a truck’s window. Flare guns were also fired at workers.”

    This is the actual green agenda.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  568. https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/washington-secrets/just-23-democrats-choose-biden-faces-landslide-loss-to-trump

    In addition to recording poor support for Biden and his policies, the survey found growing eagerness for former President Donald Trump to run again. Trump at last week’s Conservative Political Action Conference gave his strongest signal yet that he will run.

    The survey said that not only do Republican primary voters want Trump to run for a third time, 66%-22%, but it also found that Trump would beat Biden, Clinton, and Harris.

    In fact, pollster John McLaughlin predicted an “electoral landslide,” telling Secrets, “Trump would win the needed battleground states by an even higher margin” than in 2020.

    Feeding frenzy.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  569. https://hotair.com/john-s-2/2022/02/28/ny-times-uses-same-misleading-edit-of-zimmermans-911-call-got-two-nbc-journalists-fired-n451872

    The Slimes got off on libeling Sarah Palin so they immediately double down by using proven doctored tapes to libel George Zimmerman.

    They’ve learned nothing and should be treated accordingly.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  570. “Beware, Vladimir Putin: Spring is coming.” – Paul Krugman

    https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/28/opinion/putin-military-sanctions-weakness.html

    …Putin has one remaining ace in the hole: Feckless policies have made Europe deeply dependent on Russian natural gas, potentially inhibiting the West’s response to his aggression.

    But Europe mainly burns gas for heat; gas consumption is 2.5 times higher in the winter than it is in the summer. Well, winter will soon be over — and the European Union has time to prepare for another winter without Russian gas if it’s willing to make some hard choices…

    He has a number of other interesting thoughts, some good.

    …First, Putin has delusions of grandeur. Second, Russia is even weaker than most people, myself included, seem to have realized.

    It has long been obvious that Putin desperately wants to restore Russia’s status as a Great Power. His already infamous “there is no such thing as Ukraine” speech, in which he condemned Lenin (!) for giving his neighbor what Putin considers a false sense of national identity, made it clear that his aims go beyond recreating the Soviet Union — he apparently wants to recreate the czarist empire…

    …But Russia is looking less and less like an advanced nation.

    The truth is that I was being generous in describing Russia as even a medium-size power. Britain and France are medium-size powers; Russia’s gross domestic product is only a bit more than half as large as either’s. It seemed remarkable that such an economically underweight state could support a world-class, highly sophisticated military — and maybe it couldn’t.

    That’s not to deny that the force ravaging Ukraine has immense firepower, and it may well take Kyiv. But I wouldn’t be surprised if post-mortems on the Ukraine war eventually show that there was a lot more rot at the heart of Putin’s military than anyone realized…

    Anyone except Kamil Galeev maybe.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  571. mg @576 Traycon Martin is one of those thing on which the pro-African American activists unchallengeable conventional wisdom is wrong, wrong, wrong. As apart from the facts as Trump’x 2020 election lie, or for that matter, the claim that George W. Bush intentionally lied about Saddam Hussein’s unconventional weapons.

    Traycon Martin did not carry a weapon, but he brutally attacked George Zimmerman, whether that makes sense to you or not. If it doesn’t, it is because they concealed part of Trayvon Martin’s biography.

    My opinion is, he thought that GZ was a Blood who had identified him as a Crip and was calling for reinforcements.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  572. 411.

    From February,2020, two years ago:

    Vladimir Putin ‘underwent surgery for cancer in February’ claims political analyst who also said the Russian leader had Parkinson’s diseas

    Someone write now that he thought, from the picture of his face, that Vladimir Putin might be taking a steroid. (I am thinking: As a preventative for Covid?)

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  573. 377. 381. 412.

    In this connection, on Election Day, November 5, 2019, I wrote a poem on what I thought would happen after John Bolton testified (which he never did)

    The picture’s now not so grainy,

    Although it may sound very zany,

    No One was told
    That the aid was on hold

    And the deal was cooked up by Mulvaney!

    Bolton had used the words “cooked up” and thought Mulvaney had done it. With the possible uncertainty about Mulvaney’s role, this seems to be the truth.

    The only thing is, although it was only mentioned to the Ukrainians on pr about August 28 that the aid was on hold, they knew it far earlier, but for reasons I speculated in #377, didn’t bring it up..

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  574. There was a great deal of difference in effectiveness between ages 11 and 12, which means it is because of the smaller dose – but they don’t like too high a dose because it could cause side effects.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  575. . At a July 10 White House meeting, Sondland told other officials he had worked out an “arrangement” with Acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney to give Zelensky his White House meeting after Zelensky started the investigations

    The trade off at that time was for the meeting, noit for the aid. They were all working around Trump.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  576. The impeachment report did not have its facts right.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  577. Trump was not in regular communication with Giuliani. He did not know Giukliani had succeeded in his personnel request.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)


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