Patterico's Pontifications



Filed under: General — Dana @ 4:39 pm

[guest post by Dana]

President Biden will be delivering the State of the Union address tonight. Reportedly, the President’s speech was to be an opportunity to “reset” his presidency and focus on his domestic agenda. However, with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, speech writers were compelled to rewrite parts of his speech. About the invasion and tonight’s speech:

President Biden vowed on Tuesday to make President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia “pay a price” for invading Ukraine, seeking to rally the world as Moscow’s forces rained down missiles on Ukrainian cities and prepared to lay siege to the capital of Kyiv.

Appearing before a joint session of Congress at a fraught moment in modern history, Mr. Biden planned to call on lawmakers to approve more arms and humanitarian aid for Ukraine while appealing to Americans to brace themselves for economic hardships resulting from the conflict.

“Throughout our history we’ve learned this lesson — when dictators do not pay a price for their aggression, they cause more chaos,” Mr. Biden said in excerpts from the speech released by the White House in advance. “They keep moving. And the costs and threats to America and the world keep rising.”

No president has delivered his State of the Union address with such a large-scale and consequential land war underway in Europe since 1945 and Mr. Biden faced the challenge of holding together multinational and bipartisan alliances to counter Mr. Putin. But even as he was readying his speech, congressional negotiations over an aid package bogged down in a partisan quarrel.

The president’s annual speech, slated to start just after 9 p.m. in Washington, will take place in the middle of the night in Ukraine at a time when some of the most devastating Russian attacks have taken place, raising the prospect of a split-screen moment juxtaposing images of explosions and gunfire against the president in the rostrum of the Capitol.

And while the President clearly hopes to unite Americans with his speech tonight, the fissures within his own party will be on display as several Democrats announced that they will be responding to his SOTU address:

In a sign of the complicated political landscape, Mr. Biden will be followed not just by the traditional Republican response, to be delivered by Gov. Kim Reynolds of Iowa, but by a separate responses by several members of his own party: Representative Rashida Tlaib of Michigan for the progressive Working Families Party, Representative Colin Allred of Texas for the Congressional Black Caucus, and Representative Josh Gottheimer of New Jersey for the bipartisan group No Labels.

Gottheimer criticized Tlaib’s decision to speak, saying it was “like keying your own car and slashing your own tires,” and that it would be “massively counterproductive”.

Moreover, Gottheimer added:

“This only highlights the real tension between the socialist far left and the common-sense moderate wing, which is focused on crime, costs, tax cuts and affordability and turning the page on Covid.”

Gottheimer wasn’t alone in his criticism:

Filemon Vela, a Texas Democrat, said it was “astonishing” that the “radical left continues to promote a Democratic death wish, and sees no problem relegating our party to the permanent minority”.

Information on where to watch the address here.


209 Responses to “SOTU OPEN THREAD”

  1. Hello.

    Dana (5395f9)

  2. war is terrible, except when it can be used as a distraction

    demented joe won’t let this crisis go to waste

    JF (e1156d)

  3. I sure hope not. He needs to continue raising aid for Ukraine and to ramp up the sanctions against Andropov’s bumboy. He shouldn’t say we’ve done enough, because we haven’t. We need to starve the beast and help the Ukrainians send it slinking back to its hole.

    nk (1d9030)

  4. But in any event, I am not going to watch. I’ll count on you, comrades, to tell me what he said.

    nk (1d9030)

  5. the one thing worse than russia lighting up ukraine is us getting drawn deeper into this war

    keep ratcheting things up and eventually we’ll be sending our men over

    JF (e1156d)

  6. I, for one, am glad that Donald Trump is not delivering the GOP response.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  7. keep ratcheting things up and eventually we’ll be sending our men over

    I’m in favor of doing whatever it takes to avoid dragging this out for another 3 decades. We should have turned Patton loose in ’45.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  8. @7 there’s probably a recruiting office nearby

    JF (e1156d)

  9. Best coverage: CSPAN; Hot floor mike picking up pearls of wisdom from America’s elected ruling class.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  10. Get out your cards, time to play Biden Bingo.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  11. Fashion tip to Vice President Kamala Harris; most the world believes you’re a sh-t. So dressing like it this evening doesn’t help.

    “Did you ever get the feeling the world was a tuxedo and you were a pair of brown shoes?” – George Gobel

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  12. Amazing how the Democrats look so comfortable without their masks. How long before Biden claims victory over COVID?

    Still amazing how the science and the political science came together right before the SOTU to announce the country can now be mask-free. All hail Science! All hail Biden!

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  13. That didn’t take long. First sentence!

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  14. The standing ovation is great but Ukraine would probably appreciate ammo and some more rockets.

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  15. @14. So far, the state of their union.

    Not ours.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  16. Using strategic reserves? Shocker.

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  17. Lest we 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.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  18. another red line is drawn

    JF (e1156d)

  19. More about his dad. I forget – was he the coal miner? Or the auto salesman?

    When will Biden start challenging Republicans to pushup contests?

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  20. If you take credit for the economic growth, take credit for the inflation.

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  21. Neither party cares about the middle class.

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  22. More EVs and charging stations? Great! But wait…what will we use to generate that electricity? Natural gas? And where will we get all the rare earth metals for the batteries? I’m sure it won’t be Congo or China, right?

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  23. Enough of the Scranton crap; Joe Biden was born on Nov. 20, 1942- 80 years ago this coming November.

    His father, Joseph Biden Sr., was a car dealership manager but after a financial downturn in Scranton, struggled to find work. The Bidens moved out of their home in the city and moved in with the former vice president’s maternal grandparents. Joe Sr. struggled to find work and at one point, according to the Washington Post, was commuting to Wilmington to clean boilers.

    The Bidens left Pennsylvania when “Joey” was in the fourth grade, and moved to Claymont, Delaware when he was 10 years old, Joe Biden told the Associated Press.

    Joe Biden has lived in Delaware since 1953.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  24. If there was a Patterico bingo card, one of the boxes would be “DC criticizing Pelosi’s or Harris’ looks”.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  25. Free childcare? What can go wrong?

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  26. Free pre-k?

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  27. Here comes the BS – under 400K; no new taxes. YOU LIE

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  28. You want corporations and the rich to pay their fair share. You first. Outlaw any stock investment or trading in Congress. Outlaw any former Congressmen from working for a private firm for at least ten years after retirement or they go to jail.

    Then go tell Apple to bring their supply chain back to the US and tax their large war chest of US dollars.

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  29. @24. Meh. Should be. You gotta admit, it’s a pretty hideous outfit to project for a global television appearance, Paul- she looks like a turd afloat in a birdbath -but at least it is not a pantsuit. The only phrase missing from that Twitter bingo card is: ‘I really mean it’ …

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  30. Joe Biden has lived in Delaware since 1953.

    The same year that Dianne Feinstein was dating the football captain and chairing the Young Democrats at Stanford.

    JVW (ee64e4)

  31. @25/26- Free arms to Ukraine, too.

    Spending other people’s money. When is somebody going to demand these clowns reveal the cost and who is to pay for it??? When do they issue the Ukranian Freedom Fighter War Bonds?

    He’s descending into a campaign speech and dipping into whisper mode.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  32. @30. JVW, LOL. The Confluence of Incompetence. It rarely occurs this steep and this deep. At the very moment he is talking the dawn is breaking and the Russians are shelling Kyiv with artillery and missiles financed by Russian oil bought by the U.S.A.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  33. More tests to order???

    Better idea, Joe: ‘We The People’ order you to take a cognitive test.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  34. surely he’ll s

    JF (e1156d)

  35. surely he’ll say something about the border mess

    can’t wait

    JF (e1156d)

  36. Really spiking the football on COVID now. Hey Joe, you and Democrats closed schools everywhere. Republicans have been clamoring to have them open for a while now, because science. Please don’t think anyone believes you.

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  37. Hire more police? Say hello to your left flank. They want to defund the police. Fact.

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  38. Kamala clearly not liking his police talk.

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  39. Joe, Joe, Joe.

    Breyer WAS thanked– with a lifetime job and a paycheck. A ‘capitalist’ would know that.

    ‘That’s what the money is for!!!” – Don Draper [Jon Hamm] ‘Mad Men’ AMC TV

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  40. It’s time we Ban-roll-on, too, right Joe?! Stick w/that stick of Old Spice!

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)


    JF (e1156d)

  42. So many of our politicians look constipated on camera.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  43. Not that you could tell from Pelosi’s and Harris’s pasted-on smiles, but Biden farted.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  44. @43. The whole 70 minutes was an exercise in breaking wind, Paul; besides, why else do you think Kamala wore brown?!

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  45. Are we allowed to hold Biden accountable if he hasn’t cured cancer by 2024?

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  46. When asked in a CNN interview earlier today what President Biden should say in his State of the Union speech this evening, Ukraine President Zelenskyy’s responded: “Something useful.”

    Mr. Zelenskyy has been disappointed.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  47. Biden dutifully ignored China for the most part. Talk about the Uighurs? Tibet? Big brother social media monitoring? China using slave labor? Unfair economic practices? Cyber warfare against the US? Menacing Taiwan? Staking claim to the international waters in the South China Sea?

    Meh. It’s all good. Democrats and China have a long fruitful and lucrative (for the Democrats) relationship. Seems to be working out well for Beijing.

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  48. There are a lot of dementia patients out there who could get short term benefits from the work of Biden’s medical staff.
    I’ve noticed though that he dips into hiding before a big speech and after, so the meds given must be severe

    steveg (e81d76)

  49. Haven’t you figured out corporate establishment democrats and the leftist base of the party feel the same way about each other as trumpsters and never trumpers feel about each other in the republican party. Henry the thief cuellar and texas’es AOC jessica cisneros are going at each other right now in the primary in texas district 28.

    asset (7ecb93)

  50. “When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in a society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it.”
    ― Frédéric Bastiat

    mg (8cbc69)

  51. Did Fauci give the Chicoms rebuttal? or was it the French kisser?

    mg (8cbc69)

  52. I hung for about 20min to see how he addressed Putin and the invasion. The domestic spin was just going to be too much. I figured reading one or two 5min synopses would be a better use of time. It’s easy to kitchen-sink Biden…..crime is up, immigration problems persist, inflation rages, supply chains are throttled, Covid lingers, China looms, Afghanistan fades, and Joe desperately tries to spend. As always, there’s no simple solutions….so a politician can at best empathize, throw some blame, rehash stalled plans, and pretend that persuasion is just around the corner.

    Biden went all-in on an aggressive agenda when the Congress is hopelessly divided, instead of trying to pick off some modest proposals that could have won over the Manchin’s, Collins’, Murkowski’s, and Romney’s….and maybe fostered some good will. Alas, went for the jugular and lost. Now we have to rally behind him on Ukraine, support aggressive sanctions, support getting weapons to the Ukrainians, holding the NATO line, and hoping Putin is not as unhinged and desperate as his nuclear missives suggest.

    It wasn’t encouraging when Joe said he stood with the “Iranian” people. Congress tried to cheer but it’s though he’s trying, it’s like watching a ballplayer past his prime desperately trying to catch up to that fastball. We need better people. Trump ain’t the answer. Demand new and better voices.

    AJ_Liberty (3cb02f)

  53. I’m assuming you mean Navin Gruesome, but that could be Justin castrudeau or Emmanuel milfcron.

    urbanleftbehind (c6f17b)

  54. Support DeSantis then. He’s got the experience and been ahead of the curve the whole time.

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  55. I was a little disappointed that DeSantis didn’t even mention Ukraine or Putin at CPAC, but maybe beggars can’t be choosers. He has time to grow into the role and he has to understandably thread the Trump loyalty gauntlet. His fixation on “Brandon humor” gets tedious after a point and I didn’t generally agree with his Covid strategy, though he’s not my governor. At this point, any opposition to Trump is appreciated…and other than Haley….there’s no one obviously better that resonates with the current GOP.

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  56. The Iowa chicks + their neighbor over in SD can wrestle each other for the VP slot. I think Ernst was given short shrift in 2016 because of the Hogan’s Heroes flavor of a Drumpf-Ernst ticket

    urbanleftbehind (c6f17b)

  57. Where do you think a lot of the yachts are docked, AJ?

    urbanleftbehind (c6f17b)

  58. Adderall is a powerful drug. SCROTUS Squinty McStumblebum’s dilated pupils and Mel Tillis-styled stutter give the game away.

    Always a week behind doing what Europe has already done.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  59. Talkin’ about his de-de-de-degeneration…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  60. On Ukraine, The Russians are holding the Ukrainian forces in the north by f-ing around about Kyiv etc.
    Meanwhile, in the south, where they’ve taken and held territory before, the Russians have connected all the dots to the soviet supported… ahem Russian supported, Russian speaking enclave along the Moldovan border. The name of this area is unpronouncable for westerners, but its now all linked.
    Its been my opinion that this is the area Russia wanted all along and once consolidated, will either offer Ukraine a deal based on Russia holding this territory, or they will simply withdraw in the north and stay in the south.

    In order to have sanctions lifted, Ukraine would have to agree to a deal. The Ukrainians do not seem willing to do that at this point because of the general russian bungling about in the north.

    Putin could force Ukraine to concede, but that might leave sanctions in place for some time.

    Still sure the end game is to secure the south, but not sure how Putin gets there without the use of archtypal russian military brute force. Military critics and pundits have said Putin tried to do a western style invasion in the north and encircle Kiev, for concession, but his northern army failed logistics 101, continuously leaves armor without infantry protection.
    In defense of Russia, the idea was always to fix Ukraine resources in the north, prevent NATO weapons and resupply into the south, keep the south and if they fulfill that objective, they win ugly

    steveg (e81d76)

  61. I see that the Nazi Duo, MTG and Bob-ert, heckled thought that they had the floor. In the bar’s backroom.

    nk (1d9030)

  62. steveg (e81d76) — 3/2/2022 @ 8:53 am

    The name of this area is unpronouncable for westerners,

    Not unpronounceable. Just hard to remember. Transnistria. The forgotten cemetery or murder site during World War II.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  63. @61 nobody wants to hear about our 13 dead in afghanistan when you can get the beau story for the 17 billionth time instead

    the 81 million in a nutshell

    JF (e1156d)

  64. Rel Biden Bingo,

    I don’t think I paid attention to every word, but only about half of these things happened.

    He didn’t say “the Big lie” didn’t day he was a Catholic, didn’t attack Manchin or Sinema or Trump, mentions his Supreme Court nominee, but not her race or gender, didn’t blame the bad economy on Russia sanctions, but said sanctions would be done so as not to hurt us, didn’t say “C’mon Man”, didn’t say anything about Jan 6 – didn’t even mention reform of the Electoral Count Act but only other proposed election legislation, didn’t say “here’s the deal” and didn’t cough.

    I can’t say if he stared into the crowd, but I think he did make a few pauses – usually when applause came, not sure he mentioned the Build Back better bill – he barely hinted at college cost or climate provisions, he did insult or threaten Putin – and his associates – with financial penalties, he didn’t whisper into the mike, but at the end he spoke louder for some sentences – he’s no orator, he wasn’t able to modulate his voice and I don’t know if he is in a condition to carry a tune, didn;t self applaud job creation but did self applaud cutting the deficit in half, which may be because the BBB bill didn’t pass and anyway is compared with the super high deficit of last fiscal year, don;t think his stumbles add up to a dementia moment, although he once said “America” when he meant Delaware – later in the speech he would correct his misstatements, he did tell a (supposedly true) story from his past (about what his father told him), he bragged about Covid – also said that now people could order some more free Covid tests – I think they finally all got delivered, and said doctors etc were working hard, and never mentioned that some therapeutics had stopped working, you did get variations on struggle for democracy and aid to Ukraine (I’m not sure how much he mentioned help_ he did say something about green energy in the sense that he said it would be cheaper – save American $500 a year – I think that’s what he meant, and he did mention unity.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  65. Biden wws somwewhat careful about Beau – he said he didn’t know for sure that Beau got his cancer from a fire, in Iraq or maybe in Kosovo. But I don’t know that that’s even a remotely plausible hypothesis. The Republican Congresswomen could have shouted about that, but they don’t know anything.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  66. The sad spectacle of Congress critters patting each other on their backs, joking, taking selfies at the SOTU gave an indication of how serious-minded these people are about this important event hosted by the So-Called Ruler Of The United States (SCROTUS).

    And then there’s this…

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  67. @63. He touched on his daddy, dead Beau and the prideful strength of recovering addicts [guess who but not by name] and Scranton, PA– where he has not lived for nearly 70 years.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  68. Of that triumvirate, she’s least harm, which is sad, Colonel.

    urbanleftbehind (c6f17b)

  69. @66. Roll her old chassis into any Pep Boys where the first move to fix that kind of shimmy is with a lug wrench.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  70. What Biden said about economics was incoherent, but could sound as if it made sense to anyone who wasn’t capable of following it because he acted like people were supposed to understand it.

    He said Insulin costs about $10 a vial to make but can sell for 30 times the price, and let’s cap the cost at $35 a month.

    Now wait: $10 x 30 days = $300. How can it be sold for $35 without the pharmaceutical company stopping its manufacture? I suppose he means cap the co-pay or the charge to n uninsured individual..

    And he said:

    One way to fight inflation is to drive down wages and make Americans poorer.

    I think I have a better idea to fight inflation.

    Lower your cost, not your wages.

    Does this make any sense? How do you “lower costs?”

    Without lowering wages or the number of people employed? You could lower the number employed to do anything and increase the number and value of things made.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  71. This was good:

    And we’re launching the “test to treat” initiative so people can get tested at a pharmacy, and if they prove positive, receive antiviral pills on the spot at no cost.

    Of course what was keeping hat from happening was government regulation.

    This is an initiative – still in the works – to get rid of bureaucratic regulations, combined with a plan to give it away free, like the masks and some tests.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  72. Joe Biden remembered an embarrassing moment: When he told someone in a wheelchair in Missouri to stand up

    So when he introduced the Ukrainian ambassador to the United States, he said:

    The Ukrainian ambassador to the United States is here tonight, sitting with the first lady.

    Let each of us here, if you’re able to stand, stand and send an unmistakable signal to the world and Ukraine.

    And the camera (on NBC) showed the ambassador standing.

    Later he told Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer to stand. He had some difficulty, or didn’t want to, and only got up part way,

    Look, tonight, I’d like to honor someone who has dedicated his life to serve this country: Justice Breyer — an Army veteran, constitutional scholar, retiring justice of the United States Supreme Court. Justice Breyer, thank you for your service.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. I mean it. Get up. Stand up so they can see you. Thank you.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  73. I left out – the Covid vaccines are also free at the point of sale (they cost the U.S. government $29 I think or maybe an insurance company)

    So he’d do it also with the therapeutic and make it available right away when someone got a positive test result in a pharmacy – no delay and no further prescriotion needed

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  74. The New York Times did not correct obvious errors: (good(

    Putin may circle Kyiv with tanks, but he’ll never gain the hearts and souls of the Iranian people.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  75. Israel who we have sent billions in aid refuses to sell arms to israel. (lindsay graham) Have told biden american can’t send iron dome missile batteries to ukraine so they can keep good relations with putin!

    asset (ffbc8e)

  76. President Biden on Tuesday called on Congress to pass legislation to aid veterans exposed to toxins while serving in Iraq and Afghanistan — a problem he said leads to cancers “that would put them in a flag-draped coffin.” He was then interrupted by Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.), who yelled, “You put them there. Thirteen of them!”

    Boebert appeared to be referencing the 13 troops killed in a suicide attack last year during the final days of the chaotic U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan.

    “One of those soldiers was my son, Major Beau Biden,” the president continued.

    Biden has, for years, expressed that his son’s death might have been caused by exposure to toxins while he served in Iraq and Kosovo. Beau Biden was an officer in the Army National Guard.

    Democrats immediately booed Boebert, and one of them shouted, “Kick her out!” Neither Boebert nor the White House responded to messages from The Washington Post following the incident.

    The outburst was not the only tense moment of the night. Some in the chamber — including Boebert and Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-Ga.) — seemed to mock the president as he went on with his speech. Both laughed at some lines, uttered retorts and live-tweeted the event.

    “Here’s another way to fight inflation,” Boebert wrote on Twitter. “Resign.” … “Joe Biden wants us to tackle ‘mental health.’ I agree. We must start with the presidency,” Greene wrote.

    By the end of the address, Boebert tweeted, “When Biden said flag draped coffins I couldn’t stay silent. I told him directly he did it. He put 13 in there. Our heroic servicemen and women deserve so much better.” – source,

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  77. Keying your own car? Slashing your own tires? Haha–you mean like Professor Kerri Dunn did back in 2004 at Claremont-McKenna College? Still my favorite “hate crime” hoax ever.
    PS: She still has a teaching job in academia at John Jay College. These people are shameless.

    Bill Serra (4ee4d2)

  78. No doubt the families of the 13 dead U.S. service men and women he got killed in his disastrous Afghanistan withdrawal debacle were deeply moved by Joe’s thirteen millionth mention of one dead Beau Biden– who died not in combat on foreign soil, but in his hospital bed in Philadelphia as a civilian.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  79. “Go get him”
    Here comes Kamalalala

    mg (8cbc69)

  80. U.S. closes embassy in Belarus due to ‘security and safety issues’ The State Department has closed the U.S. embassy in Minsk, Belarus, and is allowing non-essential staff at the U.S. embassy in Russia to leave due to the war in Ukraine.

    That’s three United States embassies shuttered in six months– with a fourth in Moscow on deck… and Taiwan warming up in the bull pen.

    Attaboy, Joe!


    “Unity,” Joe?

    Did Europe renege on promised fighter jets to Ukraine?

    Yes and no, but at the least they’ve made the modern version of Lend-Lease more complicated. The heartwarming story of European support for Ukraine’s air force captured imaginations everywhere but in Russia and Belarus, as dozens of military fighter jets got offered for Ukraine’s defense. Pilots came to NATO countries to pick up their rentals last night:… Today, however, Politico’s Paul McCleary reported that the transfers had been halted (via Twitchy). Other reports corroborated McCleary, saying that the agreements were “collapsing”…

    Paper jockeys vs. fighter jockeys.

    Go get’em, Joe!


    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  81. “Where do you think a lot of the yachts are docked, AJ?”

    Yeah likely off of Florida but Oligarchs don’t vote or finance elections….while DeSantis gets to work on his tough-guy status. Other than Trump’s sort of weird affinity, I’m not sure why Republicans have any love for Putin. The Mueller investigation created some bizarre Stockholm Syndrome I think.

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  82. Here’s a dangerous protester in St. Petersburg. Don’t let her age fool you, she’s got a mean streak a mile wide.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  83. Way back at #66, are you sure Nancy isn’t practicing a garrote move?

    urbanleftbehind (c6f17b)

  84. He beat Trump.

    nk (1d9030)

  85. Maldives, Seychelles, Montenegro and anywhere in the Indian ocean would be my guess.

    mg (8cbc69)

  86. Prediction: With all the arms that Ukraine is getting, I expect them to try to carry the fight to Belarus or Russia proper. A strike against an airbase or a staging area; something like that. Then we get to see what the next rung looks like.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  87. @87. Prediction: oil nears $125 bbl., by Friday.

    The markets never sleep:

    Brent Crude [as of March 3] – $116.90 +3.38%

    Attaboy, Joe!

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  88. This Day In History: March 2: irony—- Vladimir Putin pulls a George Washington on Kyiv:

    March 2, 1776: The Siege Of Boston

    ‘In advance of the Continental Army’s occupation of Dorchester Heights, Massachusetts, General George Washington orders American artillery forces to begin bombarding Boston from their positions at Lechmere Point, northwest of the city center, on this day in 1776.

    After two straight days of bombardment, American Brigadier General John Thomas slipped 2,000 troops, cannons and artillery into position just south of Boston at Dorchester Heights. The 56 cannon involved in the move were those taken at Ticonderoga, New York, by Lieutenant Colonel Benedict Arnold and Ethan Allen with his Green Mountain Boys, which had then been transported to Boston by Colonel of Artillery Henry Knox the previous winter.

    By March 5, 1776, the Continental Army had artillery troops in position around Boston, including the elevated position at Dorchester Heights, overlooking the city. British General William Howe realized Boston was indefensible to the American positions and decided, on March 7, 1776, to leave the city. Ten days later, on March 17, 1776, the eight-year British occupation of Boston ended when British troops evacuated the city and sailed to the safety of Halifax, Nova Scotia.

    The victory at Boston resulted in John Thomas’ promotion to major general; soon after, he was assigned to replace General Richard Montgomery, who was killed in action as he and Benedict Arnold attempted to take Quebec. Thomas arrived at Quebec on May 1 and soon lost his own life. Although a physician by profession, he died of smallpox on June 2, as the Patriots retreated up the Richelieu River from their failed siege of the city.’

    History rhymes.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  89. How did the Molotov cocktail get its name? It was from “that” Molotov:

    It wasn’t until 1939 that the Molotov cocktail got its name. The non-aggression pact signed in August by Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union gave Russia control of Finland. That winter, the Soviets invaded and began air strikes on the country, though minister of foreign affairs Vyacheslav Molotov assured Russian radio listeners that the USSR was dropping humanitarian aid, not bombs. Cheeky Finns called these airborne deliveries “Molotov’s picnic baskets” and vowed to respond with “Molotov cocktails.”

    nk (1d9030)

  90. I claim dibs on “Putin’s putaines” for ostensibly American comrades who are siding with Putin because they don’t like Biden.

    nk (1d9030)

  91. The phrase “Putin’s putaines” that is. I am not going to keep the Moscow ones from them.

    nk (1d9030)

  92. The Future of Cooperation in Space May Permanently Alter Because of Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine

    ‘Since the mid-1970s the rivalry that drove the Cold War has evolved into one of cooperation between the two most significant nations working in outer space. The Soviet Union and its successor, the Russian Federation, have worked with NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) on a series of joint missions, and the construction and operation of the International Space Station (ISS).

    In the last month, we learned that the planned end date for ISS was going to be sometime in January 2031. But over the last two days, the messaging from both NASA and Roscosmos has gone from continued cooperation to one fraught with Russian warnings of consequences for any escalation of sanctions that could affect that country’s space program.

    Yesterday, Dmitry Rogozin, who heads up Russia’s space agency posted on Twitter a warning that sanctions imposed because of the war in Ukraine could lead to serious space implications. He turned the deorbiting of ISS in these new circumstances into some kind of weapon with these remarks.

    “If you block cooperation with us, who will save the ISS from an uncontrolled deorbit and fall into the United States or Europe? There is also the option of dropping a 500-ton structure to India and China. Do you want to threaten them with such a prospect?”

    In response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the United States announced that economic sanctions imposed would degrade Roscosmos ability to support its space ambitions from launch vehicles to cooperation on the development of new science and human flight missions. The European Union and its space agency, ESA, is likely to go along with US export control measures, and although NASA stated that they didn’t expect civil space cooperation to be impacted by the events in Ukraine, the leader of Roscosmos pointedly made a threat with his statement about dropping the ISS on countries currently imposing sanctions on Russia.

    He stated that the ISS doesn’t fly over Russia’s landmass so if deorbited it poses no threat. But it does fly over the US, Europe, China, and India. It is not a friendly statement to make when the Roscosmos leader states, “So all the risks are yours. Are you ready for them?” He continues this line of reasoning regarding countries that could be on the receiving end of a 500-ton object coming down upon them stating, “do you want to threaten them with such a prospect?”

    For ESA, the upcoming ExoMars mission, the deployment of the Rosalind Franklin rover on the surface of the Red Planet, expected to launch between September 20th and October 1st this year, could be jeopardized. It was to be launched on a Russian rocket from the Baikonur Cosmodrome. The cooperation with Russian scientists and those at ESA has been extensive. But will science transcend geopolitics and war?

    Arianespace may also be impacted since it has been using Russia’s Soyuz vehicle for some of its missions launched out of French Guiana. Arianespace has been working on joint ventures with Roscosmos to develop new launchers and satellites.

    All of the cooperation gained in the ending of the Cold War may vanish within a short time with human exploration of outer space an early victim. Instead, the fallout with NASA and ESA may see Roscosmos move to closer cooperation with China’s space agency. Since 2017 the Russians and China have had an agreement to develop joint space-based projects. China’s muted response to the invasion of Ukraine with news announcers describing Russia’s “legitimate” concerns about NATO expansion as justification for Russia’s acts, suggests we are coming to the end of what was once a very promising joint effort in outer space. But Rogozin’s remarks threatening an uncontrolled deorbit of the ISS are unconscionable.’

    “Now, if you feel – that you can’t work with us; then, I’ll relieve you of the responsibility.” – Ross Duellan [Steve Ihnat] ‘Countdown!’ 1967

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  93. 141 countries vote to condemn Russia at UN

    141 countries voted in favor of a UN General Assembly resolution “deploring” Russia’s aggression against Ukraine and demanding the immediate and complete withdrawal of all Russian forces from Ukrainian territory.

    The resolution is non-binding, but reflects Russia’s historic isolation on the world stage just one week into its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine. Four countries joined Russia in voting against the resolution — Belarus, North Korea, Eritrea and Syria — while 35 abstained.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  94. China asked Russia to delay Ukraine war until after Olympics: report

    China urged Russia to delay the invasion of Ukraine until the conclusion of the Winter Olympics in Beijing, it was revealed on Wednesday.

    Senior Chinese officials made the request in early February after Washington informed Beijing of the Russian troop build-up in the hopes communist leaders would pressure their ally to stand down, a source confirmed to Reuters. Russia waged war with Ukraine four days after the Olympics ended, and Russian President Vladimir Putin escalated his military advance and rhetoric in the hours after the closing ceremony ended.

    If the above is true, concerns regarding conflict over U.S. commitments to defend Taiwan are certainly heightened. Consider the possibility of Russian submarines secretly running silent and deep as interference for Xi as he ‘liberates’ Taiwan back to China next year.

    Welcome to “The New World Order,” kids, as Ukraine is absorbed back in to into Mother Russia and you play on your plethora of Chinese gadgets. They’ve publicly suggested it was dawning– and old Squinty McStumblebum is in charge. Forget about Ukraine; might want to focus on a chance of a kinetic conflict with China… and stock up on soda crackers, bottled water—- and spam:

    New world order: Russia and China’s plans take shape

    ‘America’s defeat in Afghanistan, symbolized by the chaotic withdrawal from Kabul in the northern summer of 2021, has given the Russians hope that the US-led world order is crumbling.

    Fyodor Lukyanov, [a Russian foreign policy thinker] argues that the fall of Kabul to the Taliban was “no less historical and symbolic than the fall of the Berlin Wall”. Influential Chinese academics are thinking along similar lines. Yan Xuetong, dean of the school of international relations at Tsinghua University in Beijing (Xi’s alma mater), writes that “China believes that its rise to great-power status entitles it to a new role in world affairs – one that cannot be reconciled with unquestioned US dominance”.

    Like Lukyanov, Yan believes that “the US-led world order is fading away … In its place will come a multipolar order.” President Xi himself has put it even more succinctly with his often repeated claim that “the East is rising and the West is declining”.’

    “I’ve got a bad feeling about this.” – Indiana Jones [Harrison Ford] “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull’ 2008

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)




    This Is the Russia-China Friendship That Nixon Feared

    Feb. 20, 2022

    …..Today, China has a far bigger stake in the international system and the U.S. economy than Nixon could have imagined possible….

    …. But by framing the struggle as a fight between the “free world” and dictatorship, the Biden administration risks pushing Russia and China closer together into what some are calling a “new axis of autocracy.” This time, Moscow is the little brother, seeking support from Beijing. It could prove to be among the most consequential geopolitical developments in decades….

    …It’s too early to tell how far China will stick its neck out for Russia in its confrontation with the West over Ukraine. China’s leaders have long argued for a world free of formal military alliances. They’ve been cautious about getting entangled in other countries’ military conflicts.

    But President Vladimir Putin of Russia and Mr. Xi took pains to present a common front recently when they issued an extraordinary joint statement hours before the opening night of the Winter Olympics in Beijing. The statement pledged that their cooperation would be “superior” to the one forged between the two countries during the Cold War. No area of cooperation would be off limits, presumably including Russia giving China its most advanced weaponry….

    ….This month, the friendship appeared to break ground. The statement marked the first time that China has supported Russia’s demand for an end to NATO expansion. By signing onto the text, Russia also supported China’s claim to Taiwan, and both sides said they were “seriously concerned” about the U.S. decision to forge a military alliance with Britain and Australia and to cooperate “in the field of nuclear-powered submarines.”

    Mr. Putin and Mr. Xi might not be natural allies, but they have an awful lot in common. Both see the United States as a chaotic hegemon. Both men were profoundly shaken by the collapse of the Soviet Union, which they viewed as a cautionary tale of what not to do. Both have clamped down hard on dissent and dispensed with or circumvented presidential term limits, paving the way for the potential to rule for life.

    And both, longing to restore their countries’ role as great powers, are striving to recover territory that they see as having been lost to the West: Ukraine, in Russia’s case, and Taiwan, in the case of China.
    The most striking thing about their statement was its sweeping declarations. It reads like a manifesto calling for the United States to recognize that it is no longer the boss of the world.

    Two months after Mr. Biden presided over a democracy summit, Mr. Putin and Mr. Xi assailed “certain states’ attempts to impose their own ‘democratic standards’ on other countries, to monopolize the right to assess the level of compliance with democratic criteria, to draw dividing lines based on the grounds of ideology.” The world has changed, they asserted. Russia and China should be respected as “world powers” that get to dictate what happens in their backyards. The statement can be read as an attempt to peel America’s allies away or to make Americans lose the will to fight…

    ,,,,And yet the world is not jumping at the chance to be bossed around by the world’s largest surveillance states, either. It’s not an exaggeration to say that the fate of the world depends on our ability to get the response to this “axis of autocracy” right. Americans have to stand up for our values and our allies without ending up in a catastrophic war. No matter how testy relations become, we should remember that the biggest threats we face today — climate change,[!!} the pandemic {?} and nuclear proliferation — threaten Russia and China, too.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  96. I think the strength of the resistance to the invasion surprised China.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  97. A hackers group called Anonymous claims to have disabled Russia’s space agency (but wait a second could this could be actually Russia) and with it communication with their spy satellites but the Russian space agency says they are still in control of their spy satellites. Cutting access to their spy satelllites is not what the U.S. would want to do now.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  98. However, the Director General of Roscosmos, Dmitry Olegovich Rogozin, denied the claim and called the group “petty swindlers.”

    In a social media statement, he said: “The information of these scammers and petty swindlers is not true. All our space activity control centers are operating normally.”

    Rogozin has previously stated that control of the Russian space industry, orbital group and the Russian International Space Station segment is protected from cyber criminals.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  99. If you include President Biden’s flub where he said Iranians instead of Ukrainians this would continue the mention of Iran in every State of the Union message since the year 2000. I don’t know if whoever compiled it was iclding the speeches delivered by a new president in place of a State of the Union speech in 2001, 2009, 217 and 2021.

    Meanwhile, Biden’s policy, at least till Feb 24, was heading toward appeasement of Iran, or at any rate, lifting a lot of sanctions.

    This incorporates an entire series of Twitter messages by Gabriel Noronha.

    “What’s happening in Vienna is a total disaster” one warned. The entire negotiations have been filtered and “essentially run” by Russian diplomat Mikhail Ulyanov. The concessions and other misguided policies have led three members of the U.S. negotiating team to leave.

    One questionable assumption: hat Russua opposes nuclear proliferation.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  100. This comes from writing things too quickly and not thinking things through:

    Biden in the State of the Unon messageL:

    And I know you’re tired, frustrated and exhausted. That doesn’t even count the close to a million people who sit at a dining room table or a kitchen table looking at an empty chair because they lost somebody.

    Close to a million people is the number of people whose death was attributed to Covid.

    It’s not the number of survivors from the same household.

    That could be more than one, and it could also be none.

    Average household size has declined over the past century, from 4.6 persons in 1900 to 3.68 persons in 1940 to only 2.58 persons by 2010.1 This decline is due to decreases in the share of households with three or more persons and increases in the share with only one or two persons. In 1940, for example, more than one in four households (27 percent) had at least five persons and less than one in 10 (8 percent) had only one person.2 By 2010, these shares had nearly reversed, with more than one-fourth of all households (27 percent) having only one person and slightly more than one-tenth (11 percent) having five or more persons.3

    However, there are signs of a reversal in the decline in average household size. Although the trend away from large households has continued since 2010, average household size actually increased between 2010 and 2017 from 2.58 to 2.65 persons…

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  101. Posted on December 18, 2019:

    Existing statistics do not indicate that Iraq veterans are more affected by brain cancer than other veteran groups, although no comprehensive data is available to definitively say one way or the other.

    The evidence on the cancer risk of burn pits is likewise inconclusive. A 2011 report by the National Academy of Sciences on the long-term health effects of burn pit exposure in Iraq and Afghanistan found that there was “inadequate/insufficient evidence” to determine whether there is an association with cancer. We didn’t identify any published studies addressing a link to brain cancer since the review…

    Now those burn pits would be similar to the situation at or near Ground Zero aftr September 11, 211, and I don’t recall this type of disease being attributed to being at or near the World Trade Center site in the months after the attacks. It was more like lung diseases. But Joe Biden said on November 11, 2019:

    just like, you know, when all the firemen in New York went down to 9/11, and so many got cancer, and particularly brain cancer {!!?]…

    It was anyway not the firemen, who died, but the people working on the recovery, who were more than just firemen.

    And that doesn’t even get into the question of how close Beau Biden was to any of these burn pits, and for how long.

    More from in 2019:

    We were unable to find any support for Biden’s claim that “more people are coming home from Iraq with brain cancer than ever before, than any other war.” His campaign did not reply to our request asking for a source for his statement.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  102. Was the locus classicus od the State of the Union bingo card here?

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  103. Cathy Young has a good piece on “Putin’s Bogus Blame-NATO Excuse”.

    It would be silly and presumptuous to argue that the West, and the United States in particular, has never made mistakes with regard to Russia. But the idea that NATO enlargement and other Western policies threatened Russia’s legitimate security interests and ultimately either baited or cornered Putin into striking out at Ukraine is wrongheaded. The claim can easily devolve into an exercise in apologetics on Putin’s behalf, even when it’s not intended as such. It also perpetuates the illiberal idea that Russia is entitled to submissive neighbors—a notion that will not bother Hanania or Mearsheimer but should bother anyone concerned with progressive, classically conservative, or libertarian values.
    Do Russia’s complaints about NATO enlargement amount to valid security concerns? First of all, talk of “encirclement” is ludicrous. Russia currently shares less than 6 percent of its land border with NATO countries; if Ukraine joined NATO, that would go up to 16 percent, a significant increase but still very far from a steel vise closing around the country. Second, if there’s one thing the last few days have conclusively demonstrated, it’s that Russia’s vast nuclear arsenal is a virtually insurmountable deterrent to NATO military action even in response to extreme provocation—let alone to an unprovoked invasion by land. What’s more, as Miller points out in his Quillette article, there were no NATO bases and hardly any NATO troops in the alliance’s new member states until after Russia’s aggression against Ukraine in 2014. (Putin’s latest round of aggression already seems likely to add new NATO members, including Finland.)

    Finally, it is worth noting that while Kremlin opposition to an “anti-Russian” Ukraine has focused mainly on NATO membership, there is no evidence that the Putin regime would have looked any more kindly on Ukraine’s pursuit of European Union membership. Indeed, the 2013-14 “Euromaidan” protests that led to a new revolution in Ukraine—and to the beginning of Russia’s protracted war against its neighbor—were sparked when Putin strong-armed and cajoled Yanukovych, who succeeded Yushchenko in 2010, into abruptly abandoning an about-to-be signed EU trade agreement and ditching several bills meant to fulfill the EU’s conditions for the pact. The agreement would not have created any military cooperation, but it would have pulled Ukraine further out of Russia’s “sphere of influence” and into the West’s orbit.

    Those who see the United States as guilty of double standards argue that we practice our own sphere-of-influence power politics—for instance, via the Monroe Doctrine, originally formulated as opposition to new European colonialism in the Western hemisphere but often used to justify U.S. dominance. However, the concept underwent many transformations over the past century, with attempts to reconceptualize it in a more multilateral mold; a decade ago, the Obama administration attempted to renounce it altogether. No one could, with a straight face, deny that the United States has a history of often heavy-handed and often morally dubious interventions in Central and South America. But that history has not included actual war or land annexation since 1848. As for hypotheticals like, “But what if Mexico had tried to form an alliance with Russia?,” they are fundamentally silly. The United States did not throw a hissy fit in 2009 when Brazil joined an alliance with Russia, India, and China, later joined by South Africa, or when Russia conducted military exercises (involving bombers and cruisers capable of carrying nuclear weapons) in Venezuela in 2008 and several times since then. For that matter, even during the Cold War, Mexico and Canada managed to have friendly relations with Communist Cuba without incurring anything more than tensions with the United States.

    Also, in in 2007, a year when Putin was named Person of the Year by TIME, the Russian dictator was just fine with Ukrainian independence.

    TIME: Do you think Ukraine will ever again be part of Russia?
    Putin: Of course not. We don’t want it.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  104. @104. Her dismissal of the encirclement perception is simplistic, if not naive. If you read the whole piece, her omission of the Cuban Missile Crisis is glaring. Perhaps it’s because the Russian born writer came into the world in 1963– a year after the ‘Monroe Doctrine’ was in part, used as rationale to excise Russian missiles 90 miles off the U.S. mainland- when the ‘tension’ was very, very real.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  105. There is no “encirclement”. Any Putinista who posits that nonsense isn’t being honest.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  106. Satellite image spots yacht linked to Putin out of reach of sanctions

    ‘As Europe and the U.S. bear down with a raft of aggressive sanctions targeting Russian President Vladimir Putin, the super yacht he is believed to own has found safe harbor in a highly militarized port in Russian territorial waters. In new satellite imagery obtained by CBS News, the yacht can be seen docked in a port in Kaliningrad, near Russia’s nuclear weapons operations.

    Experts say Putin’s luxury vessel has become a symbol not only of his vast hidden wealth, but also of how challenging that money has been to find.

    “He’s a KGB agent, so he’s crafty. He knows how to hide when he needs to,” said John Smith, former director of the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, which administers and enforces all foreign sanctions.

    Data from MarineTraffic, a global intelligence group, shows Putin’s alleged yacht, the Graceful, left Germany two weeks before the invasion of Ukraine–[another intel tipoff missed?!] Putin’s government salary is said to be about $140,000, but that doesn’t begin to explain the mansions, million-dollar watch collection and over-the-top yacht. “It would be fair to say he’s among the richest men in the world,” Smith said. Though he sells himself as a man of the people, his wealth is estimated to be more than $100 billion.’ –

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  107. DCSCA and John Mearsheimer would get along great.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  108. @106. That wholly depends on your POV. It’s an argument made repeatedly in good faith from the West even as NATO membership expanded- and NATO was created to check Soviet expansion in the first place. But if you see it from the other side, know their history and add the suspicions, the ‘inferiority complex’ and such into the mix and include the patrolling subs in the Arctic along with the ‘encircling’ missiles targeting them from over the North Pole, you can see where the sense of ‘encirclement’ comes from.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  109. @108. Better w/Dr. Kissinger:

    Henry Kissinger on Ukraine

    Subject: How the Ukraine crisis ends

    (Kissinger wrote it 8 years ago).

    ‘People familiar with the region will know that not all of them will be palatable to all parties. The test is not absolute satisfaction but balanced dissatisfaction. If some solution based on these or comparable elements is not achieved, the drift toward confrontation will accelerate. The time for that will come soon enough.’ – Henry Kissinger

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  110. U.S. delivered hundreds of Stinger anti-aircraft missiles to Ukraine this week, sources say

    ‘The U.S. has delivered hundreds of Stinger anti-aircraft missiles to Ukraine for the first time over the last few days, including over 200 on Monday, according to a US official and a congressional source briefed on the matter.

    Earlier this year the US gave the green light to Baltic countries including Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia to send American-made weaponry that they have to Ukraine, including Stingers. But until now the Biden administration had held off on the US providing the Stingers directly to Ukraine, while they have provided other lethal weaponry.’ – source,

    “Free Launch” —- Stinger missiles cost roughly $40,000 EACH.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  111. More sanctions:

    FIDE suspends Russia. No more chess in the nation that dominates chess.

    For half of the 20th century, Soviet and Russian players dominated chess, winning all but one World Chess Championship, the game’s most prestigious tournament. During the Soviet era, grandmasters like Garry Kasparov and Anatoly Karpov were treated as celebrities. Even today, Russia boasts some 239 grandmasters — by far the most of any country.

    “There is still a huge, popular enthusiasm for the game when important matches and tournaments are going on,” said Michael Hudson, an associate professor at American University of Phnom Penh in Cambodia, who wrote his dissertation on chess in the Soviet Union. “They still get headline news.”

    But the international organizing chess body this week dealt a blow to Russia, where the game has been historically ingrained in the country’s national identity. In response to the invasion of Ukraine, the International Chess Federation on Sunday pulled tournaments from Russia and Belarus, a move that experts described as historic.

    “FIDE expresses its grave concern about the military action started by Russia in Ukraine,” the organization, using its French acronym, said in a statement. “FIDE stands united against wars as well as condemns any use of military means to resolve political conflicts.”

    In addition to pulling tournaments — including the prestigious Chess Olympiad — FIDE also said that Russian and Belarusian players will not be allowed to display their flags in tournaments and that the federation will terminate all sponsorship deals it holds with Russian and Belarusian state-owned enterprises. It also said that two Russian players who publicly voiced support for the invasion could face discipline.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  112. Stinger missiles cost roughly $40,000 EACH.

    New ones do. These are “new old stock.”

    Kevin M (38e250)

  113. 124.

    Russia’s vast nuclear arsenal is a virtually insurmountable deterrent to NATO military action even in response to extreme provocation—let alone to an unprovoked invasion by land.

    Yes, Putin was obviously lying any time he mentioned NATO. Putin was perhaps a little bit scared of NATO in 2014, but thought he had gotten the Obama Administration and others more scared – they didn’t send many weapons to Ukraine because at the end of an escalation lies nuclear war, but Putin was scared and didn’t do anything besides annexing Ctimea, where he had a naval base, and starting trouble in the eastern portion of Ukraine (probably, so that in case things changed, he had a small spark going that he could enlarge into a big flame.)

    What probably changed his mind was President Biden’s extreme aversion to war, any size war involvng American troops, as exemplified in the way he abandoned Afghanistan. The Ukraine crisis timetable fits well with a decision by Putin taken in the immediate aftermath of August, 2021.

    when Putin strong-armed and cajoled Yanukovych, who succeeded Yushchenko in 2010, into abruptly abandoning an about-to-be signed EU trade agreement and ditching several bills meant to fulfill the EU’s conditions

    On the advice of political consultant Paul Manafort, who assumed Yanukovyych was living in a place where public opinion mattered, and who didn’t take account of Russian pressure on Yanukovych, Manafort thought Yanukovyych was free to act.

    Putin later assumed that Manafort could be bought by anybody.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  114. Russia’s Massive Convoy Headed To Kyiv Is Under Siege By Air Strikes

    The 40-mile long convoy of Russian troops heading for Kyiv from the north has been stalled due to fuel problems, while senior Russian military officials have the convoy regrouping while apparently changing their strategy as they meet heavier resistance than expected.
    The convoy is still reported in the same position that it was on Monday evening, about 17-18 miles north of Kyiv. A senior defense official told Military Times that the convoy is stalled for a number of reasons. “Obviously, the resistance that they’re facing, the fuel and sustainment problems that they’re having. We are also picking up signs that they’re having problems feeding their troops, that they’re not only running out of gas, but they are running out of food.”

    Ukrainian Brigadier General Kyrylo Budanov told Military Times that the Ukrainian Air Force is using this halt to conduct airstrikes using Su-25 and Su-24 ground attack aircraft as well as artillery and missile attacks on the stalled convoy.
    “We burn many columns of the enemy,” he said, adding that “my intelligence officers and agents are directing and calling the strikes.”

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  115. This Russia Ukraine war seems like this.
    Gangster in LA sees that his cousin has a house, nice little business and the gangster wants in on it.
    Cousin says no. This infuriates the gangster. No one says no to him or his gang without there being consequences and his whole identity is “disrespected” so gangster embarks on a campaign of destruction, and punishment. Then the cousins friends and neighbors show up. This is an outrage.

    Two years after Putin dies and interred, steam will still be pouring our of his ears over NATO and EU interference, the insolence and insubordinancy of the Ukraine

    steveg (e81d76)

  116. Two ways to look at that convoy if you are the Ukraine:

    Grim forboding or sitting duck hit and run opportunity.
    The latter is the only sane choice.

    steveg (e81d76)

  117. Transfer three A-10 aircraft squadrons to Ukraine now
    This aircraft and its gun system were designed to counter an armored assault in Europe. They proved effective in Desert Storm’s target-rich environment, quite similar to the current advancing Russian force. They also became the infantry’s friend in close-air support missions.

    The United States Air Force has deployment packages ready to go. The whole transfer to the Ukrainian Air Force could be completed in days after congressional authorization.

    Firepower is needed to defeat the coming onslaught of armored forces. Other weapons are necessary for ground forces, but air power will be decisive. The A-10 has proven this ability and was designed for this purpose.

    Zelenskyy asked NATO for air support. This request was declined by NATO. That is an appropriate decision since Russia has not attacked NATO.

    However, that decision leaves each country an opportunity to decide based on its own moral compass…….
    ……..It is time to implement the United States’ moral compass and add the A-10 to the list of weapons already scheduled. Failure to add defensive capability to current Ukraine forces, while sanctions develop, weakens the potential impact of sanctions. They are complementary actions.
    If wishing only made it so.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  118. Russians:
    “OSCE permanent council meeting in Vienna today. Russia has proposed their own discussion point titled: “On Ukraine’s crimes against civil population and unacceptable reaction of Western countries to the special military operation

    steveg (e81d76)

  119. But if you see it from the other side, know their history and add the suspicions, the ‘inferiority complex’ and such into the mix and include the patrolling subs in the Arctic along with the ‘encircling’ missiles targeting them from over the North Pole, you can see where the sense of ‘encirclement’ comes from.

    Just because you’ve heard those heard those arguments, doesn’t mean you have accept them as valid or legitimate. And that’s the problem with Mearsheimer and his “great power” theory. Another problem is that thesis presumes that the great-power leaders are rational rather than delusional. That, and he didn’t foresee the massive blowback against Putin. Etc.

    It’s a two-way street with NATO. They’ll accept nations that meet their criteria, but the nations that join want to do it, and the reason for being under the NATO umbrella is all the more stronger today, thanks to Vlad.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  120. International Cat Federation bans Russian cats from competitions
    The federation, which considers itself “the United Nations of Cat Federations,” said in a statement that it was “shocked and horrified” that Russian forces had invaded Ukraine and “started a war.” Known as FIFe (for its French name, Fédération Internationale Féline), it said that the measures were decided Tuesday and that officials could not “witness these atrocities and do nothing.”
    “No cat belonging to exhibitors living in Russia may be entered at any FIFe show outside Russia, regardless of which organization these exhibitors hold their membership in,” said the organization, which spans almost 40 countries.
    The federation, which was established more than 70 years ago, also said it would not allow cats bred in Russia to be imported or registered in any of its pedigree books. Officials said they would be donating funds to assist cat breeders in Ukraine and thanked neighboring countries for their efforts to help Ukrainian refugees.
    That’ll end the war!

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  121. Here is a website that tracks Russian oligarch yachts, including Putin’s. Instead of destroying them, Whale Hunting suggests gifting them to Ukraine. It’s a free subscription.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  122. you can see where the sense of ‘encirclement’ comes from.

    They’re englobed!

    Kevin M (38e250)

  123. Flying an A-10 requires training and practice. Firing that cannon does things to the flight dynamics that will surprise every pilot the first time.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  124. Biden refuses to ban Russian oil despite Nancy Pelosi telling him to: President’s staffers kick press out of Cabinet meeting for asking about issue as Psaki says it would lead to higher gas prices

    The White House does not support a ban on Russian oil imports, according to press secretary Jen Psaki, despite even House Speaker Nancy Pelosi joining in on the calls for the U.S. to cease buying Moscow’s fuel.

    Reporters shouted down President Biden on Thursday as he took part in a Cabinet meeting.
    ‘Will you ban Russian oil?’ a reporter asked as the press pool was ushered out of the meeting before the Cabinet began its discussion.

    ‘He said No! Let’s go!’ a Biden staffer said as they ushered press out of the room. ‘No, he didn’t.’ ‘He didn’t respond to anything,’ multiple reporters were heard grumbling.

    “He has no idea what’s coming”

    JF (e1156d)

  125. Joe Lieberman wants us to intervene.

    JOE LIEBERMAN: And the question is now really one for Putin is he just bombarding the Ukrainian cities to get to a point where there can be a cease-fire on terms that are acceptable or advantageous for him? Or does he really mean to demolish Ukraine the way he did Chechnya? And the challenge for us now? And by us, I mean, the U.S. and NATO, are we going to stand back? I know. And let a kind of almost you might say genocide. It’s the murder of the Ukrainian people just because they are Ukrainians. He’s targeting civilians. And my answer to that is, I hope not. I know they’re not willing to do a no-fly zone, but there is a lot more they can do on the ground with more sophisticated weapons. Look, we could also covertly send in special forces to aid the Ukrainians and the NATO. Allies in Europe have tremendous capabilities along those same lines. I think morally, we just can’t stand back and watch this.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  126. “Don’t underestimate Joe’s ability to f… things up.”

    –Barack Obama

    Kevin M (38e250)

  127. Russia Today is closing their American division, probably because DirecTV and others won’t take their money anymore. This is a good thing.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  128. Headline on the English language Yated Ne’eman (weekly out I think on Wednesdays)


    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  129. @125. Reporters shouted down President Biden on Thursday as he took part in a Cabinet meeting.
    ‘Will you ban Russian oil?’ a reporter asked as the press pool was ushered out of the meeting before the Cabinet began its discussion. ‘He said No! Let’s go!’ a Biden staffer said as they ushered press out of the room. ‘No, he didn’t.’ ‘He didn’t respond to anything,’ multiple reporters were heard grumbling.

    Just got gasoline – 10 days ago it was $5.25 gal.,— today, $5.95/gal. Attaboy, Joe!

    “Let’s go,” all right… Brandon.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  130. Instead of destroying them, Whale Hunting suggests gifting them to Ukraine.

    … and fuel them with Russian gas. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  131. Biden refuses to ban Russian oil despite Nancy Pelosi telling him to: President’s staffers kick press out of Cabinet meeting for asking about issue as Psaki says it would lead to higher gas prices

    Did she mention reversing Joe’s energy policy and opening up the U.S. at the same time? Nope. Nancy’s family has some interests in Bechtel– be interesting to learn how much they have in power utilities which lead to charging electric cars, The CA electric grid sucks– and is expensive as is.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  132. Postscript. Food prices have soared, too.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  133. @121. Cat fight? Nah.

    This would end the war:

    ‘Lysistrata’ is an ancient Greek play by Aristophanes, originally performed in classical Athens in 411 BC. It is a comic account of a woman’s extraordinary mission to end the Peloponnesian War between Greek city states by denying all the men of the land any sex.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  134. White House knocks down talk of banning Russian oil imports

    The White House on Thursday knocked down talk of banning Russian oil imports, warning doing so could further spike the already high price of gas for Americans after Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) threw her support behind the idea.

    “Our objective and the president’s objective has been to maximize impact on President Putin and Russia while minimizing impact to us and our allies and partners,” press secretary Jen Psaki said at a briefing with reporters. “We don’t have a strategic interest in reducing the global supply of energy and that would raise prices at the gas pump for the American people around the world because it would reduce the supply available,” she continued. “And it’s as simple as less supply raises prices, and that is certainly a big factor for the president at this moment. It also has the potential to pad the pockets of President Putin, which is exactly what we are not trying to do.”

    Psaki downplayed U.S. reliance on Russian energy, saying it only accounts for about 10 percent of U.S. oil imports. She also said the Biden administration has been taking steps to try to “degrade Russia’s status as an energy supplier over time.” source, –

    These children are brain dead… just like the twit they’re working for.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  135. I’ve seen this a couple of places and I’m sure I’m missing the context and hopefully someone here can add it; what was the deal with Pelosi dancing and the fist rubbing thing?

    frosty (0dec90)

  136. Russia Today is closing their American division, probably because DirecTV and others won’t take their money anymore. This is a good thing.


    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  137. Biden is vowing to seize Russian oligarchs’ yachts. Here’s where they are right now
    A CNN review of maritime location data from the website MarineTraffic found that more than a dozen yachts that have been reported to be owned by Russian oligarchs are spread out across the world, from the crystal waters of Antigua to ports in Barcelona and Hamburg to atolls in the Maldives and Seychelles.  
    The seizures have already begun, with French officials taking the Amore Vero, the yacht they said is owned by (Igor) Sechin, according to a statement from France’s Ministry of Economy and Finance. The yacht arrived at the French port of La Ciotat on January 3 for repairs, but was “making arrangements to sail urgently, without having completed the planned work” when it was seized on Wednesday, the ministry said. Sechin, the CEO of the Russian oil company Rosneft, was sanctioned by the EU earlier this week, and Rosneft itself was sanctioned by the US in 2014.
    The French ministry said that the Amore Vero, which has an onboard gym and beauty salon and won an award for yacht design, is owned by a company whose “main shareholder” is Sechin. Sechin served as Russia’s deputy prime minister in Putin’s cabinet before becoming CEO of Rosneft, one of the country’s largest companies, in 2012.

    The seizure may also scare other Russian oligarchs into getting their ships out of EU ports. The Dilbar, one of the largest yachts in the world, which is reportedly owned by Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov, arrived in Hamburg, Germany in late October, according to MarineTraffic data. There was confusion about the ship’s status on Thursday: Usmanov was sanctioned by the EU earlier this week, and Forbes reported that German authorities had seized the 156-meter ship, which can carry up to 96 crew members and 24 guests. The US Treasury Department also sanctioned Usmanov on Thursday, specifically calling out the Dilbar as evidence of his “luxurious lifestyle.”

    But a spokesperson for the Hamburg economic authority told CNN Thursday that “no yacht has been seized by authorities or customs at the port in Hamburg at this moment in time.” ……..

    The Luna, a yacht reportedly owned by Farkhad Akhmedov, an Azerbaijani billionaire who previously led a Russian natural gas company, was also in Hamburg as of the latest MarineTraffic data from earlier this week. Akhmedov, who has not been sanctioned, kept the nine-deck, 115-meter Luna after an acrimonious divorce that was the largest divorce case heard in Britain’s legal history.  The yacht features missile detection technology and bulletproof windows.

    Several yachts reportedly owned by Russian oligarchs have been docked at a port in Barcelona, including the Solaris, which has been tied to Roman Abramovich, the billionaire who announced Wednesday that he would sell the Chelsea Football Club and donate proceeds to a foundation for people impacted by the invasion of Ukraine. Abramovich hasn’t been sanctioned.

    The Galactica Super Nova, reportedly owned by Russian oil company executive Vagit Alekperov, left Barcelona on Saturday and crossed the Mediterranean to Tivat, Montenegro, before sailing south into the Adriatic Sea. While Alekperov hasn’t been sanctioned, he is president of Lukoil, which has been hit by US sanctions in the past.
    Several yachts connected to Russian oligarchs have arrived in recent weeks in the Maldives, an Indian Ocean archipelago nation. They include the Clio, reportedly owned by oligarch Oleg Deripaska, which left Sri Lanka in early February and has been sailing between various Maldives atolls since then, according to MarineTraffic. Deripaska was sanctioned by the US in 2018.

    None of the oligarchs mentioned in this story responded to requests for comment from CNN sent to their spokespeople, businesses or lawyers. 

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  138. I understand the disinclination to put U.S. boots on the ground, but why can’t the U.S. and NATO use air power to destroy Russian troops and armor? We’re not invading Russia. We’re helping Ukraine respond to an invasion from Russia. What’s wrong with that?

    Any sanctions powerful enough to cause pain to Putin will piss him off just as much as Western air power, right?

    norcal (5948da)

  139. Or are we going to base our strategy on not pissing off Putin? Good grief.

    norcal (5948da)

  140. I understand the disinclination to put U.S. boots on the ground, but why can’t the U.S. and NATO use air power to destroy Russian troops and armor?

    It’s still an act of war against Putin, which risks widening the conflict in ways we have no way of predicting or anticipating. Tom Nichols has been pretty good on this subject.
    And it sucks because Putin’s forces are firing on the Zaporihzhzia nuclear plant.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  141. What Could Else Possibly Go Wrong Dept.-This:

    Dow futures drop more than 400 points following reports of smoke at Ukraine nuclear power plant
    Stock futures turned negative Thursday evening following reports that smoke was visible from a nuclear power plant in Ukraine — the largest in Europe — after Russian troops attacked. The situation in Ukraine is rapidly deteriorating, and reports from the country are difficult to confirm.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  142. It’s still an act of war against Putin

    I’m sure that’s the way Putin wants people to look at it. I see it as an act of defense–helping a country defend itself against an act of war by Russia.

    Besides, Putin could declare the sanctions, yacht-seizing, etc. as an act of war anyway. The bottom line is we can’t conduct ourselves based on the feelz of an aggressor.

    norcal (5948da)

  143. Thanks for that linked article, Paul. It changed my mind. This part is what did it:

    Indeed, one more reason not to let our emotions get the better of us is that the only way Putin can save himself from his own fiasco is to bait the West into an attack. Nothing would help him more, at home or abroad, than if the United States or any other NATO country were to enter direct hostilities with Russian forces. Putin would then use the conflict to rally his people and threaten conventional and nuclear attacks against NATO. He would become a hero at home, and Ukraine would be forgotten.

    norcal (5948da)

  144. Besides, Putin could declare the sanctions, yacht-seizing, etc. as an act of war anyway.

    He could, but he’d be lying. Economic sanctions are utilized as an alternative to resorting to acts of war.
    This really isn’t about “feelz”, norcal. There are Rules of War and Just War Theory that are important constraints. Yes, Putin is breaching those rules with his war crimes, and it sucks, and he needs to pay.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  145. The bottom line is we can’t conduct ourselves based on the feelz of an aggressor.
    norcal (5948da) — 3/3/2022 @ 5:17 pm

    his feelz might include nuclear weapons

    eh, so what, right?

    JF (e1156d)

  146. JF, you missed my follow-up.

    Thanks for that linked article, Paul. It changed my mind.

    norcal (5948da)

  147. You see, unlike some people on here (I have in mind a five initial person), I’m capable of being persuaded.

    norcal (5948da)

  148. Thanks, norcal.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  149. @147 i see that, norcal

    i should’ve read further

    JF (e1156d)

  150. Well, if we cannot oppose Russia directly, how about taking out the trash locally? Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua…

    Kevin M (38e250)

  151. Somehow, the Ukrainian parliament was in session today.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  152. @139. Not gonna happen… wouldn’t be prudent…they’re going out of their way to avoid a confrontation of any kind:

    New U.S.-Russia military hotline as Ukraine war rages

    WASHINGTON, March 3 (Reuters) – The Pentagon has established a new hotline with Russia’s ministry of defense to prevent “miscalculation, military incidents and escalation” in the region as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine advances, a U.S. official told Reuters on Thursday.

    The United States says it has no troops in Ukraine but it and NATO allies in Europe are worried about potential spillover, including accidents, as Russia’s stages the largest assault on a European state since World War Two. The U.S. and its allies are also channeling millions of dollars worth of weaponry to Ukraine’s armed forces, which are using the arms against Russian troops, despite Moscow’s warnings against foreign interference.

    “The Department of the Defense recently established a de-confliction line with the Russian ministry of defense on March 1 for the purposes of preventing miscalculation, military incidents, and escalation,” a senior U.S. defense official said, speaking on condition of anonymity, confirming a move first reported by NBC. The U.S. military has successful created hotlines with Russia in the past, including during the war in Syria, where Moscow intervened on the side of President Bashar al-Assad.

    There, the United States and Russia were waging parallel military campaigns, with the United States focused on battling Islamic State. The move is just the latest effort to lower soaring tension between the United States and Russia, where President Vladimir Putin — in a clear warning to the West — announced last weekend he was putting his nuclear forces on high alert.

    Putin’s foreign minister, Sergei Lavrov, was quoted on Wednesday warning that a Third World War would be a nuclear conflict, remarks that added to growing unease.

    The U.S. military said on Wednesday it would postpone a scheduled test launch of a Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile.

    “We recognize, at this moment of tension, how critical it is that both the United States and Russia bear in mind the risk of miscalculation and take steps to reduce those risks,” Pentagon spokesman John Kirby said on Wednesday, announcing the move.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  153. @151. Well, if we cannot oppose Russia directly, how about taking out the trash locally? Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua…

    Don’t forget Delaware.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  154. I think that Israel should get its next $8 billion dollars in foreign aid from Russia and not from us.

    nk (1d9030)

  155. To think how much support Israel gets from EU countries, too!

    Kevin M (38e250)

  156. Lindsay Graham speaking stupidly as did Hannity when discussing assassinating a foreign leader. Do they really want to open that can of worms where pot shots taken against government officials are considered normal and expected?

    NJRob (eb56c3)

  157. Graham is doing what politicians do, blowing hot air, but the KGB actually sends assassins to kill Zelensky.

    nk (1d9030)

  158. 134. The play ‘Lysistrata’ is fiction. It was meant to try to argue that nothing in the war was more important than ending it.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  159. It was more than fiction, Sammy. It was farce. Like talking clouds and birds who found their own city. Cloudc[]ckooland, the ancestral homeland of Trump supporters. Also by Aristophanes.

    nk (1d9030)

  160. ….are we going to base our strategy on not pissing off Putin? …..

    That’s been the West’s strategy for the past 20+ years.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  161. Yes, just saying it was fiction doesn’t capture what it was. Farce is the word.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  162. Lindsay Graham speaking stupidly as did Hannity when discussing assassinating a foreign leader. Do they really want to open that can of worms where pot shots taken against government officials are considered normal and expected?

    As opposed to the Russians actually doing it?

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  163. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has ‘survived three assassination attempts in the past week’: Plots were foiled by double agents within the FSB

    When will the West learn that the Russians don’t play by Western rules? I expect next to see Putin launch tactical nuclear weapons, either as warning shot or to destroy a city.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  164. Lindsay Graham speaking stupidly as did Hannity when discussing assassinating a foreign leader.

    Lindsey Graham Calls for Russians to Assassinate Putin
    Sen. Lindsey Graham (R., S.C.) said Thursday night that Russian President Vladimir Putin should be assassinated by his own people, suggesting it would be the only way to end the crisis precipitated by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
    Graham did NOT call for the US to assassinate Putin, he called on the Russian people to do so. As usual, an NJRob post that is inaccurate and misleading.

    I have absolutely no problem with Putin’s inner circle removing him permanently.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  165. We’ll know when the Russians announce that Putin is in the hospital with a slight cold.

    nk (1d9030)

  166. The economic pressure is all about the coup. Hopefully Russians don’t want the isolation or being seen as the pariah. Hopefully people hear the honest truth that Ukraine offered little to no actual threat to the Russians, other than an emerging democracy adopting western values being at a border with Russia. This puts the two competing systems in a clear perspective. Authoritarianism has to hide the world from its people….and that’s getting harder and harder. It’s hard not to know that this is Putin’s choice….or see that it is wrong. The internet, cell phones, and satellite TV makes it challenging to be a tyrant.

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  167. Lindsay Graham speaking stupidly as did Hannity when discussing assassinating a foreign leader. Do they really want to open that can of worms where pot shots taken against government officials are considered normal and expected?

    Welcome to Planet Earth, NJ:

    Though somebody should remind the lovely and talented Lindsey that Stauffenberg failed.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  168. 110. That was not the problem then, and it is certainly not the problem now.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  169. In the State of the Union message, President Biden said:

    We are giving more than $1 billion in direct assistance to Ukraine, and will continue to aid the Ukrainian people as they defend their country and help ease their suffering.

    That must be the $1.4 billion provided “since 2021”

    Biden, in his speech, did not call for more money to be appropriated but White House officials had already told Congressional aides they would ask for $3.5 for the Pentagon and $2.9 for humanitarian aid. (some of this has undoubtedly been sent but the money or the items need to be replaced)

    On Thursday, two days after the speech, he formally asked Congress for $10 billion.(He also asks for $22.5 billion more to fight Covid – all to be included in a budget deal that needs to pass by March 11m or we need another continuing resollution)

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  170. We’ll know when the Russians announce that Putin is in the hospital with a slight cold.

    But “stable.”

    Kevin M (38e250)

  171. I expect next to see Putin launch tactical nuclear weapons

    They appear to be using fuel-air weapons already. I would really like to see a flight of Ukrainian jets hit the Kremlin with napalm.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  172. Biden: Putin’s enabler.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  173. Preident Biden, by planning just a little bit at a time, acts like he expects that there could be a palace coup or an ukltimatum given by his people at any moment.

    There maybe could be a 10-20% chance of that.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  174. Senator Moynihan said something best paraphrased as:

    “Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but nobody is entitled to his own facts.”

    Vladimir Putin is acting like he’s not really entitled to his own opinion – he agrees with most of us – for instance that indiscriminate attacks on a city shouldn’t be done for instance, but he is entitled to his own facts. He is entitled even to say it is not a war.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  175. Putin is not in the Kremlin now.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  176. Gold: $1,972.30/oz., and climbing;
    Brent crude oil: $115.12/bbl., and climbing.

    Attaboy, Joe!

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  177. The New York Times gave over its main editorial yesterday to Andriy Yermak:

    …We need antitank and antiaircraft weapons and other ammunition delivered to our brave soldiers right now.

    We are calling on the West to impose a no-fly zone over Ukraine. We recognize that this would be a serious escalation in the war and that it could bring NATO into direct conflict with Russia. But we firmly believe that Russia won’t stop at just Ukraine, which would potentially drag NATO into this conflict anyway. A no-fly zone would at least give Mr. Putin some pause.

    We also ask the West to increase the nonmilitary costs on Russia. We welcome the coordinated measures thus far, but we need more. Every Russian bank — not just a select few — must be cut off from the SWIFT banking system, and every Russian oligarch must be sanctioned. We are also calling for a full embargo on Russian oil and all Russian exports to the United States and Europe. These measures would not be without cost to the world economy, but the alternative is far worse.

    The international community should consider expelling Russia from the United Nations or, at the very least, excluding it from the Security Council, where it has a veto…

    You can’t do that. You could forma new organization – call it maybe the coalition of the willing, but Russia can’t be expelled from the United Nations.

    Unless its credentials are revoked.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  178. Russia did agree to a humanitarian corridor for refugees, although I don’t know if details need to be worked out.

    The number of refugees exiting the country reached 1 million on March 2 – should be higher now.

    There’s an element of discrimination against Africans – told not to get in the train. Non-Ukrainians are being told to go to other border crossings. African college students are being told however they will be able to continue their studies in Poland.

    China, by the way, like Turkey, did not evacuate its embassy…

    Putin may have lied to everyone about the timing and the nature of the attack.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  179. More from Yernak:

    ..\his is Moscow’s way of war. Mr. Putin’s forces will continue to terrorize the country to induce surrender. If they don’t succeed, they will burn it all down. It’s either bow or vanish; no third option is allowed.

    This is not going as planned for Russia, however. Everyday Ukrainians are confronting Russian soldiers, blocking tanks with their bodies. Russian forces are experiencing fierce resistance from both the Armed Forces of Ukraine and from Ukrainian citizens hurling homemade Molotov cocktails that Ukraine’s government is encouraging them to make. Ukrainians are defending their streets, their communities, their country and their identity. At the same time, Russian soldiers are surrendering en masse or sabotaging their own vehicles to avoid fighting, according to the Pentagon. They must know this war is unjust.

    We beseech our Western allies and partners to make the costs unbearable for Russia now….

    He claims “war could be a prologue to a greater European or even global massacre.”

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  180. Biden: Putin’s enabler.

    Such BS.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  181. Putin’s enablers include Germany and Switzerland. No more.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  182. The West in general enabled Putin over the past 20+ years, when the policy was not to offend Russia. It didn’t start on January 20, 2021.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  183. Jen Psaki says it is not in U.S. interest to reduce the supply of oil worldwide. But what about the climate!

    It even saves money:

    Biden in SOTU:

    Second, cut energy costs for families an average of $500 a year by combating climate change.

    Let’s provide investment tax credits to weatherize your home and your business to be energy efficient and get a tax credit for it; double America’s clean energy production in solar, wind and so much more; lower the price of electric vehicles, saving you another $80 a month that you’ll never have to pay at the pump.

    But I guess that’s long term planning.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  184. Actually, State of the Union messages by all presidents have been filled with nonsense.

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  185. White House requests $10 billion for Ukraine aid as part of broader emergency funding request

    ‘The White House has asked lawmakers to approve $10 billion in lethal and humanitarian aid for Ukraine as part of a $32.5 billion emergency funding request sent to Capitol Hill.

    The request follows weeks of discussions between White House officials and lawmakers about the shape of any potential emergency request, which was expected to focus heavily on Covid-19 needs. But the escalating Russian invasion has dramatically increased the size of the specific request for Ukraine.

    Lawmakers are in the midst of negotiations over a long-term funding deal and face a March 11 deadline to reach an agreement.

    The Ukraine funds are expected to be attached to any final deal, but the process remains fluid. “This request identifies an immediate need for $10 billion in additional humanitarian, security, and economic assistance for Ukraine and Central European partners due to Russia’s unjustified and unprovoked invasion,” read the formal request sent Wednesday from acting Office of Management and Budget director Shalanda Young to congressional leadership. Young suggested the initial $10 billion request for Ukraine would address “immediate needs” and more funding could be needed.

    “Given the rapidly evolving situation in Ukraine, I anticipate that additional needs may arise over time. This funding request is based on the administration’s best information on resource requirements at this time, and we will remain in touch with the Congress in the coming weeks and months as we assess resource requirements beyond these immediate needs,” she said.

    The detailed funding request provides $4.8 billion to the Department of Defense, including $1.8 billion for support in the region as US military units support US European Command and the NATO Response Force, $1.3 billion for cybersecurity and other defense support and $1.8 billion for replenishment of Defense Department stocks. It also calls for $5 billion for the Department of State and US Agency for International Development (USAID), including $2.8 billion in humanitarian assistance like food and other support; $500 million in military assistance through the Foreign Military Financing program; and $1.8 billion in economic assistance to help “support continuity of government and the resilience of the Ukrainian people, as well as emergent needs in the region.”

    The request also provides $21 million for the Department of Commerce to bolster export controls, $30 million for the Department of Energy to provide “technical assistance for electric grid integration,” $59 million for the Department of Justice to support a newly announced Task Force KleptoCapture to enforce sanctions on Russia and other funding for the Multinational Task Force and $91 million for the Department of Treasury for sanctions support and IRS criminal investigations, among other expenditures.

    The White House has also requested $22.5 billion in “immediate needs” for the ongoing Covid-19 response, including funding for treatments, testing and vaccines, as well as money for work to protect against future variants and efforts to vaccinate more people globally.

    A source familiar with the request noted that over 90% of funds from the Covid relief bill passed last year have been committed and “nearly all” of the funds from that bill for the Department of Health and Human Services’ Covid-19 response “have now been used.” Those funds were used for vaccine and therapeutics purchases and distribution, testing, research, supplies and hospital infection control.

    “Without additional resources, the Administration won’t be able to secure the treatments, vaccines, and tests Americans need in coming months. And critical Covid response efforts — such as free community testing sites and testing, treatment, and vaccination coverage for uninsured individuals — will end this spring,” the source said.’ -source,

    This is nuts. So when does President Biden and his Congress plan to start selling the Ukrainian War Relief Bonds??

    Oh. Right. Charge it to Uncle Sam’s credit card financed by borrowed $ from China. For starters, Stingers cost $38,000-$40,000 EACH [$15.00 at the bar 😉 ] Invest in DoD contractors– and Kellogg’s kids; Pop-Tarts are a mainstay in government relief parcels— and tip the bartender.

    … and the MIC smiled.

    “Grant us victory, O Lord, before the Americans get here.” – Field Marshal Sir Douglas Haig [John Mills] ‘Oh, What A Lovely War’ 1969

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  186. @181. Such BS.


    “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.

    Such BS, indeed.

    … and Putin smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  187. Even this may be bad:

    And we’re launching the “test to treat” initiative so people can get tested at a pharmacy, and if they prove positive, receive antiviral pills on the spot at no cost.

    The trouble with that is that may not be the right treatment for all people.

    Pfizer’s treatment contains two types of pills. One the antiviral and the other something to slow down its elimination from the body.

    Somebody taking other pills may be in some danger of an overdose.

    Now in the case of gout medicine or statins the best thing to do may be to stop taking them for five days.

    In other cases it may be more medically necessary and better is to take more antiviral oillsta,

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  188. You can’t do that. You could forma new organization – call it maybe the coalition of the willing, but Russia can’t be expelled from the United Nations.

    Sure you can. We did just that with China. Maybe we can give Germany the Security Council seat.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  189. The West in general enabled Putin over the past 20+ years, when the policy was not to offend Russia. It didn’t start on January 20, 2021.

    OK. Putin’s latest enabler. W, Obama and Trump all deserve blame.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  190. When this is over, not only will Ukraine be a NATO member, but Belarus’ new government will be falling all over themselves to join.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  191. Kissinger’s got it right.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  192. Dana- posted Dr. Kissinger’s Ukraine analysis in full but it is in moderation- he must have used a term that’s deemed an ‘expletive deleted’ but what it is not sure. It is a compelling analysis, though, and worth a read.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  193. Biden: Putin’s enabler.

    Leading the West to impose the most draconian sanctions against any country is hardly enabling. Do I wish Biden had done more-yes. An oil embargo against Russia should have been imposed, and the US should have not farmed out a decision to intervene in Ukraine directly to NATO.

    To paraphrase Shakespeare: “A Warthog, a Warthog! My kingdom for a Warthog (preferably dozens of Warthogs)!

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  194. Kissinger’s first move was detente. He’s been mostly wrong since.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  195. Kissinger’s prescription is Ukraine-as-a-buffer-state. We tried that and are now in the middle of the failure of that plan. Trying it again, expecting different results (“Putin must recognize…” HA!) is the definition of insanity.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  196. Do I wish Biden had done more-

    Haven’t you heard; he’s done everything, Rip! From driving 18-wheelers, to popping Corn-Pop:

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  197. @199. It’s a valid perspective, Kevin. Ukraine will never be admitted to NATO. They nixed a no-fly-zone just today and keep baling on any aircraft deal. The best path to peace now is to ‘shoot’ for a win/win by giving your opponent an out. Expect an East Ukraine and a West Ukraine- as Dr. K described- a la Cold War Germany w. Lviv the ‘Bonn’ of Capitalist East Ukraine and Kyiv the ‘East Berlin’ capital of East Ukraine. Otherwise, Vlad’s going to crush Ukraine and they’ll be living in the ruins a la East Berliners for years.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  198. R.I.P. actor Tim Considine

    Icy (6abb50)

  199. Bought gas yesterday- $5.95 gal.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  200. This thread is so much easier to read without seeing DCSCA’s posts. Praise Lent!

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  201. Kissinger’s first move was detente. He’s been mostly wrong since.

    And surrendering in Vietnam.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  202. Bloomberg, CNN, BBC halt operations in Russia

    Bloomberg, CNN and the BBC on Friday announced that they would be halting operations in Russia after Russian President Vladimir Putin signed legislation that makes independent reporting in the country a crime. “CNN will stop broadcasting in Russia while we continue to evaluate the situation and our next steps moving forward,” the network said in a statement.

    BBC Director-General Tim Davie issued a statement saying that the British-based broadcaster’s service in Russia would now conduct its operations outside of the country.“This legislation appears to criminalize the process of independent journalism. It leaves us no other choice than to temporarily suspend the work of all BBC News journalists and their support staff within the Russian Federation while we assess the full implications of this unwelcome development,” Davie said. “The safety of our staff is paramount and we are not prepared to expose them to the risk of criminal prosecution simply for doing their jobs,” he added.

    People urging for sanctions against Russia or those found spreading “fake news” about the Russian forces can be sentenced up to 15 years in prison under the legislation, according to Bloomberg. Bloomberg Editor-in-Chief John Micklethwait similarly said that the legislation signed by Putin would make it hard for them to be able to continue producing journalism within the country. “We have with great regret decided to temporarily suspend our news gathering inside Russia,” Micklethwait said, according to Bloomberg. “The change to the criminal code, which seems designed to turn any independent reporter into a criminal purely by association, makes it impossible to continue any semblance of normal journalism inside the country.”

    The news comes as Russian independent news outlets have announced they have suspended coverage—a rapid change of events that have taken place in the last week since Russia began its invasion into Ukraine. The Hill has reached out to Bloomberg for comment.

    Shade’s of Vlad’s new-best-bud, Xi, who’s got his back. Remember when China pulled the plug on CNN?

    … and Jinping grinned.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  203. @204. You’re Very Vladimir today, Rip. See #206. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  204. BBC resurrects WWII-era shortwave broadcasts as Russia blocks news of Ukraine invasion

    “Blessent mon coeur / d’une langueur / monotone” – ‘The Longest Day’ 1962

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  205. See the list in #200 of things that DCSCA will deny saying in a couple of weeks.

    Short version: Munich. Carve up Ukraine for ‘peace in our time.’

    Kevin M (38e250)

  206. @209. “This is Radio Moscow: ‘The Corn has been popped.’ Repeat; ‘The Corn has been popped.'” 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

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