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Further proof that Boris Johnson remains in Putin's pocket?

Government accused of ‘absurd’ sanctions loophole after giving Russian bank customers 30 days to ‘wind down’ assets

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Britain has been accused of opening a loophole in sanctions designed to hobble the Putin regime by granting one of Moscow’s biggest banks an “absurd” month-long exemption from the enforcement of an assets freeze.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced last Thursday that the state-owned VTB Bank, which is the second-largest Russian bank and its largest investment bank, was the subject of a “full and immediate” asset freeze in the UK as part of the Government’s attempts to help derail Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine by targeting key finance houses.

But the following day the Treasury unit in charge of enforcing the UK’s sanctions quietly issued a 30-day licence granting permission for any individual or entity to “wind down any transactions” with VTB until 27 March.

 

 

Edited by Spockydog
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1 hour ago, Werthead said:

They're probably not figuring that the sanctions will likely remain in place as long as Russia is militarily occupying Ukraine and as long as any puppet government it puts in place is in power. That, I think, will be the real shock.

Which would make them quite stupid. US has a habit of keeping sanctions until the country collapses and regime-changes. Putin, of all world leaders, should be well aware of that. Ok, some sanctions - travel bans and SWIFT - might get lifted once Ukraine has been entirely freed and compensated...

2 hours ago, Lord of Oop North said:

What are they talking about? Geneva Conventions are definitely not about use of weapons, they're about treatment of war prisoners and civilians in war zones.

Hague Conventions deal with weapons, but of course merely early 20th century stuff, like dum dum bullets and gas. Then other Protocols and Conventions deal with chemical and biological weapons.
Sadly, thermobaric weapons are quite a recent development, so it looks like they've simply never been regulated. Besides, I'd bet Russia used a few of them on ISIS and other jihadis in Syria at the time, and Allies most probably used some in Afghanistan as well when dealing with those huge AQ cave networks.

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40 minutes ago, Clueless Northman said:

What are they talking about? Geneva Conventions are definitely not about use of weapons, they're about treatment of war prisoners and civilians in war zones.

You are right. It doesn't specifically ban them. It could certainly be considered an indiscriminate weapon though in many circumstances.

Also, the Yanks were using thermobaric weapons in Vietnam. So the concept has been around for some time now. These modern versions seem to be incredibly devastating. Pretty terrifying stuff.

Edited by Lord of Oop North
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30 minutes ago, Tears of Lys said:

I find myself fantasizing about a stealth aircraft raining down a bit of whup-ass on this massive  40-mile convoy headed to Kyiv.

If but for 15 minutes fire breathing dragons were real.

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A friend from high school who’s a marine is volunteering to go over and fight with the Foreign Legion. Another friend from a Russian immigrant part of Brooklyn has a friend of his from high school who has family in Ukraine. He last heard from his grandma 11 days ago. She lives in Melitopol which just fell the other day. 

Scary times indeed. 

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23 minutes ago, Ghjhero said:

A friend from high school who’s a marine is volunteering to go over and fight with the Foreign Legion. Another friend from a Russian immigrant part of Brooklyn has a friend of his from high school who has family in Ukraine. He last heard from his grandma 11 days ago. She lives in Melitopol which just fell the other day. 

Scary times indeed. 

God be with her and her compatriots.  May God stand between her and harm.  May God protect her as she seeks to defend the innocent.

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Some of my liberal friends are posting on social media that we should call or email Biden and Congresspeople to protect Ukraine and establish a no-fly zone.  I suppose they don't realize that would mean starting WW3?  I politely pointed that out. 

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5 minutes ago, Maithanet said:

Some of my liberal friends are posting on social media that we should call or email Biden and Congresspeople to protect Ukraine and establish a no-fly zone.  I suppose they don't realize that would mean starting WW3?  I politely pointed that out. 

Lol people remember No Fly Zone last from when it was thrown around as a possibility in Syria under Obama and just seem to assume it’s an easy thing to implement that won’t cause any serious blowback. 

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Since Chess (altho in a metaphorical sense) has been invoked a few times in the Ukraine threads and Russian politics in general.

A historical side/footnote. Former World Champion Anatoly Karpov is on the sanction list. Wasn't that surprising, he has made a fortune as a businessman in Russia since more or less retiring from playing in the early 2000s, and he is a member of Putin's party. Also not surprising, Ukrainian born Russian GM and former WC challenger Sergei Karyakin is a total Putin drone and a piece of work. If you suffer from low blood pressure, his twitter account will sure as hell get it up.

Anyway, came for something slightly different.

A few Ukrainian Grandmasters sharing their experience.

The picture of GM Oleksandr Sulypa standing guard with rifle in hand is a really sad sight.

Edited by A Horse Named Stranger
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4 minutes ago, Ghjhero said:

Lol people remember No Fly Zone last from when it was thrown around as a possibility in Syria under Obama and just seem to assume it’s an easy thing to implement that won’t cause any serious blowback. 

Pretty sure this idea was originally floated around by conservatives, presumably because they knew that actually doing it wasn't viable and would cause World War III, but most of their voters are too dumb to realize that and thus it was an easy way to trash Biden.

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14 minutes ago, Ghjhero said:

Lol people remember No Fly Zone last from when it was thrown around as a possibility in Syria under Obama and just seem to assume it’s an easy thing to implement that won’t cause any serious blowback. 

I think a lot of people truly don't understand what a NFZ means; thinking it means that the US says planes aren't allowed to fly in an area and that's the end of it. They don't realize that other countries can just say "no" and get into an air war because Iraq/Bosnia/Libya didn't have air forces that could contest it.

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WWIII? Who'd be joining Putin to help him make that a reality? Would attempting to enforce a no-fly zone really cause Russia to try to invade a bunch of other borderlands, and start lobbing missiles onto EU countries and Send ICMBs to North America?

I'm not saying Biden should declare a NFZ that the US would actually try to enforce, but it feels like unless there are substantial allies that are going to join Russia, any talk of WWIII is a bit of an exaggeration. 

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1 minute ago, The Anti-Targ said:

WWIII? Who'd be joining Putin to help him make that a reality? Would attempting to enforce a no-fly zone really cause Russia to try to invade a bunch of other borderlands, and start lobbing missiles onto EU countries and Send ICMBs to North America?

I'm not saying Biden should declare a NFZ that the US would actually try to enforce, but it feels like unless there are substantial allies that are going to join Russia, any talk of WWIII is a bit of an exaggeration. 

What allies does Russia need to have to start lobbing Nuclear weapons?

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11 minutes ago, The Anti-Targ said:

WWIII? Who'd be joining Putin to help him make that a reality? Would attempting to enforce a no-fly zone really cause Russia to try to invade a bunch of other borderlands, and start lobbing missiles onto EU countries and Send ICMBs to North America?

I'm not saying Biden should declare a NFZ that the US would actually try to enforce, but it feels like unless there are substantial allies that are going to join Russia, any talk of WWIII is a bit of an exaggeration. 

I suppose a direct conflict between US and Russia doesn't necessarily have to eventually reach nuclear exchanges. But the odds are far too high that it would escalate to that point quickly. There's a reason the Cold War was fought through proxies rather than directly.

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15 minutes ago, The Anti-Targ said:

WWIII? Who'd be joining Putin to help him make that a reality? Would attempting to enforce a no-fly zone really cause Russia to try to invade a bunch of other borderlands, and start lobbing missiles onto EU countries and Send ICMBs to North America?

I'm not saying Biden should declare a NFZ that the US would actually try to enforce, but it feels like unless there are substantial allies that are going to join Russia, any talk of WWIII is a bit of an exaggeration. 

A NATO nation shooting down a Russian aircraft at this point in the conflict would almost certainly push Putin to declare war on the nations in NATO, and that is effectively World War III and could lead to nukes being launched.  

I can't imagine anyone wants that, which is why all the support to Ukraine is limited to giving them weapons, money, and providing them with intelligence rather than any actual boots on the ground.

I'd imagine that's also why Putin has been hesitant to go too hard in this conflict, because he doesn't want that either.  He can't win a war with the West.  At best, it will be mutually assured destruction.  He knew he could start the fight because Ukraine was isolated and lacking in alliances, but if he starts killing too many civilians, it might force the hands of NATO nations.

Edited by briantw
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