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Ukraine 20: We’re not bluffing and you can tell we aren’t by how we say we aren’t bluffing…


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2 hours ago, Which Tyler said:

It's a complete mystery to me, how a train carrying dozens of tanks can mysteriously explode minutes after arriving at a train station 5km from the border with Ukrainian held territory.

 

I can only think it's... spontaneous combustion - surely even T-62s aren't that susceptible to stray cigarettes.
Wait, T-62... aren't they from approximately 1962? Is that... Is that the best they've got for the newly conscripted troops?

The joke doing the rounds here is that the reason the T-62s were shot to pieces as soon as they arrived is that the Ukrainians don't want to be bothered with capturing and refitting such old tat.

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Some reporting that NATO and the United States have been informing Russia for months that there will be "severe" consequences to Russia using a nuclear weapon in Ukraine. What that entails is unclear, but one retired American general believes the use of a tactical nuclear weapon on the territory of Ukraine would automatically require the United States to directly respond, for fear or emboldening North Korea or Iran or China in the future. Probably not a nuclear response but a cruise missile attack against Russian (or - maybe more likely - DPR/LPR) targets operating in Ukraine. This would not be the United States entering the war directly, but a single attack designed to show the consequences of further escalation.

Obviously a thin line and a dangerous moment if that came to pass. But them standing up and telling Putin, directly, that he risks even just a conventional conflict with NATO if he uses nuclear weapons has to be a sobering moment, if they make it clear they are not bluffing either.

Edited by Werthead
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Sodium iodide pills are delivered to schools and kindergartens in Poland, today I signed a declaration that I agree my child will get one in case of ,,atomic power plant malfunction,, No atomic plants in my country, I wonder which one they mean :rolleyes:

Edited by broken one
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9 hours ago, broken one said:

Sodium iodide pills are delivered to schools and kindergartens in Poland, today I signed a declaration that I agree my child will get one in case of ,,atomic power plant malfunction,, No atomic plants in my country, I wonder which one they mean :rolleyes:

What are the pills for?

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Ah yes, talking about Ukraine in one of my politics classes will be awesome this year. Yesterday a Russian girl went on a rant about how Germany and especially the Greens dare support Ukraine when Russia had every right to help that half of Ukraine that actually wants to join Russia. She was then supported by a guy who kept repeating "We apply double standards, because we shrug it off when the US does it!" again and again.

Since the topic was actually electoral systems, I was forced to smother the starting fight with one student who gave outrage until I have some background materials prepared. Sigh... Whyyyyy... so far all the Russian students I had were relaxed and comfortably apolitical or in the case of one Dagestani boy outright snide about Putin's failure.

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1 hour ago, Varysblackfyre321 said:

What are the pills for?

My mistake, it's potassium iodide. Thyroid gland absorbs the compound, what prevents it from latter absorbtion of radioactive molecules. We were given similar substance in school after Chernobyl catastrophy in 1986. 

Edited by broken one
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1 hour ago, Toth said:

Ah yes, talking about Ukraine in one of my politics classes will be awesome this year. Yesterday a Russian girl went on a rant about how Germany and especially the Greens dare support Ukraine when Russia had every right to help that half of Ukraine that actually wants to join Russia. She was then supported by a guy who kept repeating "We apply double standards, because we shrug it off when the US does it!" again and again.

Since the topic was actually electoral systems, I was forced to smother the starting fight with one student who gave outrage until I have some background materials prepared. Sigh... Whyyyyy... so far all the Russian students I had were relaxed and comfortably apolitical or in the case of one Dagestani boy outright snide about Putin's failure.

Not to derail, and obv. two wrongs don’t make a right, but I can easily make the argument that the US invasion of Iraq was based on even less legitimate/historically accepted and more ludicrous/specious grounds and that the US population which supported it in the face of overwhelming international condemnation have more to be ashamed of than do the Russian population at present. 
 

OTOH Zelensky is approximately a million times more of a sympathetic leader than Hussein was, and the US was still enjoying the last vestiges of post-911 global sympathy at the time. Plus, flatly stated, the global community would put itself at much more risk by supporting their opposition to US aggression materially than they do by doing so now with Russia.

Edited by James Arryn
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1 hour ago, James Arryn said:

Not to derail, and obv. two wrongs don’t make a right, but I can easily make the argument that the US invasion of Iraq was based on even less legitimate/historically accepted and more ludicrous/specious grounds and that the US population which supported it in the face of overwhelming international condemnation have more to be ashamed of than do the Russian population at present. 

The US invasion of Iraq was hugely opposed within the United States and even moreso amongst its allies. France's very strong opposition to the war severely damaged French-American relations for many years. The political fallout from the invasion shaped years of British politics, and ended the honeymoon people enjoyed with the Labour government. The invasion was widely condemned. However, both the UK and US political establishments more or less fell squarely behind it (a few honourable exceptions aside, like Robin Cook in the UK), which was and remains disgraceful, and Labour's instigation of the UK's involvement in the conflict to the extent of blatantly falsifying evidence remains a major problem for Labour's reputation (the fact the Tories even more full-throttle supported the invasion of course never comes up).

On the other side of the coin, Saddam Hussein had killed more than a million people, Iraq had started multiple major wars with its neighbours, it had tried to build a nuclear bomb (even if that had been stopped by the Israelis) and it was a brutal, inhuman regime. The invasion was also not designed to annex the country to the United States, destroy or deny Iraqi statehood or sovereignty or engage in the mass slaughter of civilians. The USA and UK were wrong to invade, their reasons for doing so at that time were nonsense and the consequences which they claim they could not foresee were, funnily enough, foreseen by almost everybody else. But the two situations are not really comparable beyond both being an insane idea. And amusingly some of the most prophetic analysis of how fucked up the invasion could get came from the Russians.

Edited by Werthead
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According to the NYT (paywalled), Putin angrily rejected a plan from his generals to shorten the Russian lines by withdrawing from Kherson, pulling back behind the Dnipro and focusing overwhelmingly on taking Donetsk Oblast. Instead, he ordered reinforcements into the Kherson salient, drawing down forces elsewhere.

Or, in other words, Putin himself is directly, personally responsible for the Kharkiv losses. 

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5 hours ago, Toth said:

Ah yes, talking about Ukraine in one of my politics classes will be awesome this year. Yesterday a Russian girl went on a rant about how Germany and especially the Greens dare support Ukraine when Russia had every right to help that half of Ukraine that actually wants to join Russia. She was then supported by a guy who kept repeating "We apply double standards, because we shrug it off when the US does it!" again and again.

Since the topic was actually electoral systems, I was forced to smother the starting fight with one student who gave outrage until I have some background materials prepared. Sigh... Whyyyyy... so far all the Russian students I had were relaxed and comfortably apolitical or in the case of one Dagestani boy outright snide about Putin's failure.

I guess people who believe starting a war is a reasonable course of action will always find ways to justify starting a war to get what they want, and will not be told that their actions are wrong.

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At the risk of being Godwined this sounds distinctly reminiscent of German military strategy in the second half of WW2. Ironic really. A case of convergent behaviour of desperate dictators I suppose.

Edit: this was in response to

19 minutes ago, Werthead said:

According to the NYT (paywalled), Putin angrily rejected a plan from his generals to shorten the Russian lines by withdrawing from Kherson, pulling back behind the Dnipro and focusing overwhelmingly on taking Donetsk Oblast. Instead, he ordered reinforcements into the Kherson salient, drawing down forces elsewhere.

Or, in other words, Putin himself is directly, personally responsible for the Kharkiv losses. 

 

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5 hours ago, James Arryn said:

Not to derail, and obv. two wrongs don’t make a right, but I can easily make the argument that the US invasion of Iraq was based on even less legitimate/historically accepted and more ludicrous/specious grounds

This should not be said as a small side note, because this is the whole point and full stop should go after it. Unless you would be speaking about the times long past, for some retrospective analysis.

Ukraine war is going on now. And the fact that some Russian (and other) people allow themselves to argue that "Someone else did something wrong, why should we not be allowed to!" is bizzare and repellent. From Russian people especially, as it is done in their name and they should do what they can to stop it.

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7 hours ago, Toth said:

Ah yes, talking about Ukraine in one of my politics classes will be awesome this year. Yesterday a Russian girl went on a rant about how Germany and especially the Greens dare support Ukraine when Russia had every right to help that half of Ukraine that actually wants to join Russia. She was then supported by a guy who kept repeating "We apply double standards, because we shrug it off when the US does it!" again and again.

Since the topic was actually electoral systems, I was forced to smother the starting fight with one student who gave outrage until I have some background materials prepared. Sigh... Whyyyyy... so far all the Russian students I had were relaxed and comfortably apolitical or in the case of one Dagestani boy outright snide about Putin's failure.

You wouldn't dare to disagree in Russian class room. Russia can help you with backgroound paper, too. :leaving:

Or ask Wagenknecht for the right (his-)tory. His being Putin's.

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10 hours ago, The Anti-Targ said:

I hear the German parliament voted not to send tanks to Ukraine for the war effort. That seems like Germany giving in to Russian gas being cut off.

No, they just relegated the oppositions proposal to a parliamentary committee.

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11 hours ago, Werthead said:

The US invasion of Iraq was hugely opposed within the United States and even moreso amongst its allies. France's very strong opposition to the war severely damaged French-American relations for many years. The political fallout from the invasion shaped years of British politics, and ended the honeymoon people enjoyed with the Labour government. The invasion was widely condemned. However, both the UK and US political establishments more or less fell squarely behind it (a few honourable exceptions aside, like Robin Cook in the UK), which was and remains disgraceful, and Labour's instigation of the UK's involvement in the conflict to the extent of blatantly falsifying evidence remains a major problem for Labour's reputation (the fact the Tories even more full-throttle supported the invasion of course never comes up).

On the other side of the coin, Saddam Hussein had killed more than a million people, Iraq had started multiple major wars with its neighbours, it had tried to build a nuclear bomb (even if that had been stopped by the Israelis) and it was a brutal, inhuman regime. The invasion was also not designed to annex the country to the United States, destroy or deny Iraqi statehood or sovereignty or engage in the mass slaughter of civilians. The USA and UK were wrong to invade, their reasons for doing so at that time were nonsense and the consequences which they claim they could not foresee were, funnily enough, foreseen by almost everybody else. But the two situations are not really comparable beyond both being an insane idea. And amusingly some of the most prophetic analysis of how fucked up the invasion could get came from the Russians.

1) A week after the invasion, over 80% of Americans still supported the war. Possibly we have differing views on what huge opposition means. As to allies, freedom fries, all that, we agree. 
 

2) As far as Saddam, I already noted he was horrible. His being horrible as a cause for ear, though, is highly suspect, especially when most of the killings/wars he did that you mentioned he did while a loyal ally of the US, some of it at least (Iran) with significant US encouragement/funding/military advisors and being directly protected by the U.S., as per his gassing of the Kurds, which the US tried to blame on…I forget who, Iran I think, but anyways, not their buddy Saddam, and veto’s UN resolutions re: same. Additionally, killing a bunch of people from country X to protect people from country X has a pretty poor historical record as just causes go. Burn the village and all that. 
 

3) As far as directly annexing, no, since the U.S. annexed all the native territories and Mexican territories and Spanish territories and failed at annexing Canada it has preferred to topple regimes it doesn’t like, replace them with ones it does, and make sure that resource control is in their wheelhouse. I don’t think a casualty cares whether it was killed for land or profit or political control, though. To clarify, I fully support the Ukraine’s defense and think Putin an incredible danger to world peace. But that doesn’t change the fact that, along historical lines, he has more customary causi beli (areas where ~ majority want annexation, historical claim to incorporation, etc.) than the U.S. did, whose stated cause for war were WMDs that it’s own intel was publicly saying did not exist (NIE report) and would not be a threat to the U.S. if they did, AND to uphold the UN resolution/treaty that specifically stated that only the UNSC could determine was breached and if so, how to react. Iow, they were breaking the treaty they claimed to be going to war to uphold. I repeat, this is not raising Putin’s claims to anything like legitimacy, it’s pointing out how the US’s was even lower. 
 

In contrast, so far as we know, Russian intel has told Putin and the Russian people everything he wanted to hear, and he is not claiming to be upholding an agreement he’s breaking. And, in terms of the people, that’s the biggest difference e: the American people had full and open access to all the information that was telling everyone else that there was no cause for war, they were not subjected to the same kind of blinkered state-fed info that Russians are. All they had to do was read their own goddamn intel report, published on the front page of most major papers. Two minutes, three? They don’t have the same excuse that Russians do, and more, they were fully aware that the rest of the world strongly disagreed with their government’s position, but 4/5 still supported killing thousands of Iraqis, either because that kind of decision isn’t worth a few minutes reading, or because the US’s constant state of war has eroded the sense that going to war should be your very last solution to a problem. There are also probably even worse reasons, like just enjoying the US flexing it’s might, or religious bigotry, or revenge for 9-11 ( remember at the time a huge % of Americans thought Saddam was behind 9-11) or w/e. 

Edited by James Arryn
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6 hours ago, a free shadow said:

This should not be said as a small side note, because this is the whole point and full stop should go after it. Unless you would be speaking about the times long past, for some retrospective analysis.

Ukraine war is going on now. And the fact that some Russian (and other) people allow themselves to argue that "Someone else did something wrong, why should we not be allowed to!" is bizzare and repellent. From Russian people especially, as it is done in their name and they should do what they can to stop it.

The problem with this kind of thinking is that it perpetuates the kinds of things that are happening now in the Ukraine. If the past ceases to matter as soon as it becomes the past, then superpowers will always be allowed to flex their might and wipe the slate clean and, to be consistent, if 10 years from now China is invading Taiwan and Putin is claiming that’s a terrible thing for China to do, you’ll have to get onboard team Putin because the Ukraine is the past and therefore irrelevant now. Rinse, repeat. Why should they ever stop behaving this way if it ceases to matter the moment it’s over?
 

Accountability can’t exist if it’s always selective. If something’s wrong, it’s wrong regardless of who did it. Otherwise we’re just choosing sides.

Edited by James Arryn
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