Mar 02

Vladimir-Putin1

- Russia Warns NATO: Any Threat In Ukraine Will See Military Response (ZeroHedge, March 2, 2015):

As Russia announces the expansion of its Navy by 50 vessels this year, including two new nuclear-powered submarines and an aircraft carrier, it appears NATO’s sabre-rattling has drawn a response/threat/warning. Following British plans to send military ‘advisers’ into Ukraine (which NATO has stated are not confirmed), TASS reports, Russia’s NATO envoy, Alexander Grushko, warns Russia will take all measures against possible NATO threat in Ukraine, adding that Russia’s response may include military measures. Continue reading »

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Feb 28

US-Backed Opposition Leader Gunned Down in Moscow

- Russia: US-Backed Opposition Leader Gunned Down in Moscow (NEO, Feb 28, 2015):

By Tony Cartalucci

Martyrdom on demand: if not of use alive, perhaps of use dead? US-backed opposition groups in Russia have so far failed utterly to produce results. Their transparent subservience to Washington coupled with their distasteful brand of politics has left a rather unpleasant taste in the mouth of most Russians. Each attempt to spread the “virus” of color revolution to Moscow, as US Senator John McCain called it, has failed – and each attempt has fallen progressively flatter.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has never been more popular. His ability to weather serial provocations aimed at Russia by NATO has made him a champion against the perceived growing injustice exacted against the developing world by an increasingly militaristic and exploitative West.

So when US-backed opposition groups in Russia decided to gather again this coming March 1, Sunday, many wondered just exactly what they expected to accomplish. Continue reading »

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Feb 28

putin xi 2_0

- China Just Sided With Russia Over The Ukraine Conflict (ZeroHedge, Feb 27, 2015):

When it comes to the Ukraine proxy war, which started in earnest just about one year ago with the violent coup that overthrew then president Yanukovich and replaced him with a local pro-US oligarch, there has been no ambiguity who the key actors were: on the left, we had the west, personified by the US, the European Union, and NATO in general; while on the right we had Russia. In fact, if there was any confusion, it was about the role of that other “elephant in the room” – China.

To be sure, a question few asked throughout the Ukraine civil war is just whose side is China leaning toward. After all the precarious balance of power between NATO and Russia had resulted in a stalemate in which neither side has an obvious advantage (even as the Ukraine economy died, and its currency hyperinflated, waiting for a clear winner), and the explicit or implicit support of China to either camp would make all the difference in the world, not to mention the world’s most formidable axis.

Today we finally got the answer, and the winner is… this guy: Continue reading »

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Feb 26

- Ukraine Enters Hyperinflation: Currency Trading Halted, “Soon We Will Walk Around With Suitcases For Cash” (ZeroHedge, Feb 25, 2015):

Yesterday we summarized the most recent economic, political and social situation in Ukraine as follows:

“A year or so on from the last coup in Ukraine, Ukraine’s former Prime Minister Sergey Arbuzov told TASS, with growing popular discontent, “another state coup can’t be ruled out in Ukraine.” As the cease-fire deal hangs torn and tattered in the Debaltseve winds, the nation is a mess: a new gas dispute looms as Gazprom demands upfront payments; capital controls have been tightened as the $17.5bn IMF loan may not be enough; and the central bank governor faces prosecution as the economy craters. All of these factors have driven massive outflows from Ukraine and the Hryvnia has crashed to over 33 to the USD – a record high (and 70% devaluation from the last coup).”

So as the Ukraine government watches its country go down in flames, with the blessings of the US State Department of course, it decided to take action. According to Reuters, with the hryvnia in free fall (see above) the central bank tried to call a halt on Wednesday by banning banks from buying foreign currency on behalf of their clients for the rest of this week. Continue reading »

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Feb 26

Coming to a country near you soon …

- This Is The Biggest Problem Facing The World Today: 9 Countries Have Debt-To-GDP Over 300%


- This Is What Happens To Gold In A Hyperinflationary Currency Crisis: Ukraine Edition (ZeroHedge, Feb 25, 2015):

As Ukraine’s socio-economic situation goes from wost to worst-er, today’s announcement by President Poroshenko that the government will take actions to stabilize the currency (which as we previously noted, appears to be heading for hyperinflation) has Ukrainians rushing for the exits into precious metals… with only one goal in mind – wealth preservation.

20150225_GoldUAH

This is what gold does in a fiat-currency crisis. Now if only Ukraine actually still had some gold

Furthermore, according to RIA, on Tuesday, Ukrainian television channel Ukraina announced that with the new exchange rate, the minimum wage in Ukraine stands at around $42.90 per month, which according to the channel, is lower than in Ghana or Zambia. Continue reading »

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Feb 26

- Ukraine Enters The Endgame (ZeroHedge, Feb 25, 2015):

Back in March 2014 we forecast that it in the aftermath of the US State Department-sponsored military coup in Kiev, it was only a matter of time before Ukraine (all of its sovereign gold having since “vaporized“) succumbed to full blown hyperinflation and economic implosion. Less than a year later, precisely this outcome has finally played out, and as a result, the entire nation has finally entered its economic endgame, one which has two conclusion: either it joins Greece in becoming a ward of Europe (of which it is not an official member) and the IMF (thank you Joe Q Public taxpayer), or it quietly fades away into insolvent “failed state” status.

This is in a nutshell the assessment by Goldman Sachs, presented below, which really doesn’t say much we didn’t cover earlier in “Ukraine Enters Hyperinflation: Currency Trading Halted, “Soon We Will Walk Around With Suitcases For Cash“, but which does lays out the (very unpleasant) alternatives for yet another nation brought to ruin through American neo-colonial expansion, in what may well be a record short period of time. Of these, the primary ones focus on yet another IMF bailout which the agency may find some resistance to as a result of the near-total collapse of Greece at the same time. And not only that but Goldman’s “base case of IMF fund disbursement in mid-March may not come quickly enough to stabilize the Hryvnia.” Oops. Continue reading »

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Feb 26

Flashback:

- Max Keiser on Greece: ‘The IMF is a Financial Mafia’:

“The only solution for Greece is to arrest the Goldman Sachs bankers immediately and all those involved in the fabrication of Greek economic data in 2000, when you became a member of the eurozone. The next step is to nationalize all banks like Sweden did in 1993. The International Monetary Fund is that last thing you need. You will lose your sovereignty. It exercises terrorism. You will be raped in such a way, that it will be the worst pain you have ever felt.

If someone burns down your house in order to sell you charcoal, would you consider this logical? That is exactly what Goldman Sachs did to the Greek economy. They burned you down like arsonists and then they tell you not to worry they’ll give you charcoal. It’s outrageous. The IMF has said that it can provide Greece with help. The Wall Street investment hedge funds are attacking Greece’s bond market so that the Greek economy collapses. And they’re doing this for a simple reason; to force the Greek people to ask for help from the IMF. The IMF will say, we came because you asked for our help. Wall Street bankers work very closely with the IMF. It’s a financial mafia and the hedge funds are the assassins. Research conducted on Goldman Sachs in the USA and in Europe show how big a mafia it is. They are involved in illegal activity throughout the world.”


THE IMF WAS HERE

- How Far Is It From Kiev To Athens? (The Automatic Earth, Feb 25, 2015):

Riddle me this, Batman. I don’t think I get it, and I definitely don’t get why nobody is asking any questions. The IMF and EU make a lot of noise – through the Eurogroup – about all the conditions Greece has to address to get even a mild extension of support, while the same IMF and EU keep on handing out cash to Ukraine without as much as a whisper – at least publicly.

The Kiev government, which has been ceaselessly and ruthlessly attacking its own people, is now portrayed as needing – monetary and military – western help in order to be able to ‘defend’ itself. From the people it’s been attacking, presumably. And hardly a soul in the west asks what that is all about. Continue reading »

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Feb 26

Russian president Vladimir Putin

- Putin Slams Ukraine Decision To Cut-Off Gas To East As “Genocidal” (ZeroHedge, Feb 25, 2015):

Ukrainian authorities decision to halt gas supplies to Donetsk amid the ongoing humanitarian catastrophe occurring there “bear the hallmarks of genocide,” blasted Russia’s Vladimir Putin during an awkward press conference with Cyprus’ President Nicos Anastasiades (who he had just agreed bilateral military and trade deals with). “Apparently, some responsible leaders of the modern-day Ukraine are unable to understand the importance of humanitarian issues,” Sputnik News reports Putin concluded. In an attempt to gain leverage and force Ukraine’s hand however, Russia’s Gazprom has indicated it intends to suspend gas deliveries to Ukraine (and thus Europe via pipelines) unless Kiev makes a further prepayment. Continue reading »

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Feb 26

H/t reader squodgy:

“The USA will not supply weapons to Kiev…..erm….”


- U.S. Pushes For Escalation, Arms Kiev By Laundering Weapons Through Abu Dhabi (Moon of Alabama, Feb 24, 2015):

The U.S. is circumventing its own proclaimed policy of not delivering weapons to Ukraine and is thereby, despite urgent misgivings from its European allies, increasing the chance of a wider catastrophic war in Europe.

The Ukrainian coup president Poroshenko went to an international arms exhibition in Dubai. There he met the U.S. chief military weapon salesman. Continue reading »

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Feb 25

obama-cameron

- Western “Boots On The Ground” In Ukraine: Britain Sends 75 “Military Advisers” To Combat “Russia-Backed Aggression” (ZeroHedge, Feb 24, 2015):

In what we believe is the first touchdown of Western ‘boots-on-the-ground’ in Ukraine, Britain’s David Cameron stated today that British military personnel are to be deployed to Ukraine for the first time in the next few weeks to provide advice and training to government troops. As The Guardian reports, Britain would be “the strongest pole in the tent”, and argued for tougher sanctions against Moscow if Russian-backed militias in eastern Ukraine failed to observe the ceasefire. The MoD said up to 75 personnel would begin to deploy to Ukraine from next month as Cameron warned sanctions could become “materially different” and held out SWIFT exclusion once again.

As The Guardian reports,

British military personnel are to be deployed to Ukraine for the first time in the next few weeks to provide advice and training to government troops, David Cameron announced before a committee of MPs. Continue reading »

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Feb 25

- Former Ukraine Deputy PM Says “Another Coup Can Not Be Ruled Out” Among Currency Implosion, Central Bank Charges (ZeroHedge, Feb 24, 2015):

A year or so on from the last coup in Ukraine, Ukraine’s former Prime Minister Sergey Arbuzov told TASS, with growing popular discontent, “another state coup can’t be ruled out in Ukraine.” As the cease-fire deal hangs torn and tattered in the Debaltseve winds, the nation is a mess: a new gas dispute looms as Gazprom demands upfront payments; capital controls have been tightened as the $17.5bn IMF loan may not be enough; and the central bank governor faces prosecution as the economy craters. All of these factors have driven massive outflows from Ukraine and the Hryvnia has crashed to over 33 to the USD – a record high (and 70% devaluation from the last coup).

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Feb 24

H/t reader John:

“Ran across this today.
Sad, very sad.”



18.02.2015

Description:

The bread queue in a long suffered city of Pervomaysk. Hungry and exhausted people are queuing for a small piece of bread. They tell journalists everything they think about the war and peace, Russia and Ukraine, Poroshenko and Putin. I wish their call will be heard everywhere in the world. Please help. Pe-post, share, spread the word …

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Feb 22

- Ukraine Conscripts Children in Foreign Countries (RINF, Feb 21, 2015):

Ukraine is now so desperate to murder more residents in its Donbass region, that it is conscripting for its ethnic-cleansing there to clear the Donbass land of its residents (who had voted 90% for the man whom Obama overthrew in February 2014), so that children who have been adopted or fostered by parents in foreign countries are now being drafted to do it.

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Feb 21

Vadym Prystaiko - Ukraine deputy foreign minister

- Peace? Ukraine “Preparing For Full-Scale War” With Russia, Demands The West Supply Lethal Weapons (ZeroHedge, Feb 21, 2015):

“We don’t want to scare everybody, but we are preparing for full-scale war,” warns Vadym Prystaiko – Ukraine’s deputy foreign minister - telling CBC during a stunning interview that “what we expect from the world is that the world will stiffen up in the spine a little.” Deamnding that West provide ‘lethal weapons’ Prystaiko rages “everybody is afraid of fighting with a nuclear state. We are not anymore.” Coming just a week after the Minsk Summit ‘peace’ deal and with Germany having warned they are likely unable to stop arms being supplied to Ukraine, Prystaiko concludes, “we would like [The West] to send lethal weapons to Ukraine… weapons to allow us to defend ourselves.”

As CBC reports,

Ukraine’s deputy foreign minister says he is preparing for “full-scale war” against Russia and wants Canada to help by supplying lethal weapons and the training to use them. Continue reading »

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Feb 20

ukraine territory update

- Ukraine Fighting Shifts To Mariupol Whose Capture Would Grant Russian Land Corridor To Crimea (ZeroHedge, Feb 19, 2015):

Yesterday, when we reported that the last Ukraine outpost in the rebel-controlled eastern territory, the town of Debaltseve, has fallen into separatist hands, we concluded that “perhaps the only question is whether fighting continues around Mariupol which would enable Russia to have a land corridor all the way to Crimea.”

Moments ago we got the answer when Reuters reported that “pro-Russian separatists have launched mortar attacks on government-held positions near the coastal town of Mariupol in southeast Ukraine and are building up their forces there, local military reached by telephone said on Thursday.” Continue reading »

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Feb 19

From the article:

“Saakashvili was offered the position of first deputy prime minister of Ukraine last December, but he refused the appointment, saying he doesn’t want to renounce his Georgian citizenship.”

Flashback:

- Saakashvili admitted that Georgia began military operations in South Ossestia (The Times, Nov 29, 2008):

“Mr Saakashvili admitted yesterday that Georgia began military operations in South Ossestia but insisted that it was in response to Russian provocation.”

- Jewish Georgian minister: Thanks to Israeli training, we’re fending off Russia (Haaretz, Nov 8, 2008):

“Israel should be proud of its military which trained Georgian soldiers,” Yakobashvili told Army Radio in Hebrew, referring to a private Israeli group Georgia had hired.

“We killed 60 Russian soldiers just yesterday,” said Yakobashvili. “The Russians have lost more than 50 tanks, and we have shot down 11 of their planes. They have enormous damage in terms of manpower.”

… which is why…

Vladimir Putin ‘wanted to hang Georgian President Saakashvili by the balls’ (The Times, Nov 14, 2008):

With Russian tanks only 30 miles from Tbilisi on August 12, Mr Sarkozy told Mr Putin that the world would not accept the overthrow of Georgia’s Government. According to Mr Levitte, the Russian seemed unconcerned by international reaction. “I am going to hang Saakashvili by the balls,” Mr Putin declared.

Mr Sarkozy thought he had misheard. “Hang him?” – he asked. “Why not?” Mr Putin replied. “The Americans hanged Saddam Hussein.”

Mr Sarkozy, using the familiar tu, tried to reason with him: “Yes but do you want to end up like [President] Bush?” Mr Putin was briefly lost for words, then said: “Ah – you have scored a point there.”


Former Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili.

- Ukraine refuses to extradite ex-Georgian President Saakashvili (RT, Feb 17, 2015):

Despite an existing extradition agreement, Kiev has refused to hand over Georgia’s ex-president Mikhail Saakashvili and former justice minister Zurab Adeishvili to Tbilisi, the Georgia’s chief prosecutor’s office said.

“The Ukrainian side has failed to cooperate with the Office of the Chief Prosecutor of Georgia in the matter of the extradition of Mikhail Saakashvili and Zurab Adeishvili to Georgia, and has refused to extradite the above mentioned persons,” a statement on Georgian chief prosecutor’s office website said.

Kiev’s failure to extradite former Georgian officials is a violation of several international conventions and a bilateral agreement between Georgia and Ukraine, it added. Continue reading »

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Feb 18

20150218_warthog

- US Sends “Tankbuster” Jets To Europe Over Russia Fears After Germany Says “A Large Scale War Could Develop” (ZeroHedge, Feb 18, 2015):

Karl-Georg Wellmann, a lawmaker in Angela Merkel’s Christian Democratic Union has warned that, despite its efforts to avoid arms being provided to Ukraine, Germany “will no longer be able to stop weapons deliveries from from the U.S. and Canada.” Almost too coincidental to these comments, CNN reports, the U.S. Air Force is sending its A-10 “tankbusters” back to Europe in order to “increase rotational presence in Europe to reassure our allies and partner nations that our commitment to European security is a priority.” As Wellmann ominously concludes, seemingly confirming Putin’s warning yesterday that if Kiev aims at a military solution, war will never end, “a large-scale war could develop out of that.” Continue reading »

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Feb 17

Russian President Vladimir Putin-1

- Putin: West already supplies arms to Kiev, but Moscow optimistic about Minsk deal (RT, Feb 17, 2015):

Vladimir Putin said that Kiev is being armed by Western allies, according to Moscow’s information, but insisted he was “optimistic” about implementing the Minsk agreement, noting that the intensity of fighting has declined.

“According to our data, weapons are already being supplied [to Kiev],” the Russian leader said at a press conference following his meeting with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban. “This is not surprising. I am convinced that whoever is supplying the weapons, the number of victims may grow, but the outcome will not change. The vast majority of soldiers serving in the Ukrainian army have no motivation to participate in an internecine conflict away from home, while the Donbass militia have every reason to defend their families.”

Continue reading »

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Feb 16

Russian president Vladimir Putin

- After Conducting Navy Drills In East Mediterranean, Russia Puts Airborne Troops In Volgograd On Alert (ZeroHedge, Feb 16, 2015):

While the latest Ukraine “ceasefire” is all but dead following such headlines as:

… perhaps a better question is what just what is Russia doing in the East Mediterranean (as in close by to both Greece and Cyprus) where as Interfax reported earlier, the Russian navy conducted tests. Bloomberg adds that the “Russian Navy vessels fire artillery rounds at sea, air training targets as part of tests in eastern part of Mediterranean, Interfax reports, citing statement by Defense Ministry.”

This happens hours after Interfax also reported that the Russian Air Force conducted a practice bombing drill in the south of Russia, in which about 10 airplanes took part.

And finally, moments ago, Interfax (and Bloomberg) made it a trifecta when it reported that

  • RUSSIA PUTS AIRBORNE TROOPS ON ALERT IN VOLGOGRAD REGION: IFX
  • ASSAULT LANDING UNIT OF AIRBORNE TROOPS ALERTED IN VOLGOGRAD REGION

As a reminder, Volgograd is about 150 miles east of Ukraine. Continue reading »

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Feb 15

- Kiev Forces Fire Mortars, Shell LPR, DPR Targets – Donbas Militia (Sputnik, Feb 15, 2015):

Despite the official beginning of a ceasefire in Donbas, Kiev forces started firing mortars and shelling the positions of the independence supporters of the self-proclaimed people’s republics of Donetsk and Luhansk (DPR and LPR).

DONETSK (Sputnik) —The leader of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR), Alexander Zakharchenko has called an emergency meeting Sunday regarding the violation of silence regime in Donbas by Kiev forces, the deputy head of DPR militia said. Continue reading »

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