BREAKING: Moscow announces END to massive troop buildup near Ukraine - Page 2 - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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#15168591
noemon wrote:It actually isn't tit for tat, because none of these countries are amassing an army to invade their neighbours and nor are they currently occupying parts of their neighbors.


The USA does Noemon. They have military bases all over the place. Japan, Germany, Cuba, and Panama, the neighbors? Yes they do.



Notice how many are in the Americas?
#15168597
USA! USA! USA!

Tainari88 wrote:The USA does Noemon. They have military bases all over the place. Japan, Germany, Cuba, and Panama, the neighbors? Yes they do.


I think his point is, those are not invasion forces. For example, the US does not have the capability to launch a campaign on say China from Japan. Not without a massive build up of people and equipment in Japan first. There's a difference between stationing troops, and setting up a strike force.
Last edited by Rancid on 22 Apr 2021 17:43, edited 1 time in total.
#15168612
Rancid wrote:USA! USA! USA!



I think his point is, those are not invasion forces. For example, the US does not have the capability to launch a campaign on say China from Japan. Not without a massive build up of people and equipment in Japan first. There's a difference between stationing troops, and setting up a strike force.


That is why in the video the Pentagon doesn't have exact numbers of all bases and actual numbers of equipment, etc. It is amazing but the Pentagon is a mystery to itself. Or it is so secretive and opaque about what it actually does that the public will never know.

BTW, Rancid, if you want really good stats and research on many things? Ask an anthropologist. That David Vine guy is an anthropologist and even the Pentagon uses his stats on their own data records.

It is amazing what anthropologists around the world wind up working with and compiling information on. It is very interesting.
#15168621
@JohnRawls

In your view, why doesn't the Russians simply establish good diplomatic relations and trade with their neighbors without the use of coercion but instead by offering them excellent incentives for having good diplomatic relations and trade with them? Using coercion doesn't make a lot of friends and it can be awfully expensive for the Russian economy too in relation to military spending and having to use troops as part of coercion. It just makes more sense to me to just make some genuine friends and without coercion because it's not as expensive and you don't make long term enemies that you have to watch out for.
#15168628
Heisenberg wrote:
On a side note, it's very amusing to me that Russia conducting military exercises within its own borders is seen as "aggressive", but when the US and UK send soldiers to Estonia, Poland or Ukraine for the same purpose it is portrayed as "defensive". It's a funny world we live in.



I have been baffled by something similar as well. It is ok and the right thing to do to support the aspirations to independence of minorities under Russian domination, but Russian minorities under the domination of former minorities under Russia are not to have aspirations to independence themselves. Ukraine resented Russian domination and is now independent; but guess what, same Ukraine is surprised that Russian minorities under ethnic Ukrainian domination want out from under the Ukrainian yoke.
#15168645
Politics_Observer wrote:@JohnRawls

In your view, why doesn't the Russians simply establish good diplomatic relations and trade with their neighbors without the use of coercion but instead by offering them excellent incentives for having good diplomatic relations and trade with them? Using coercion doesn't make a lot of friends and it can be awfully expensive for the Russian economy too in relation to military spending and having to use troops as part of coercion. It just makes more sense to me to just make some genuine friends and without coercion because it's not as expensive and you don't make long term enemies that you have to watch out for.


That is hard to answer. There was only Yeltsin who had a chance for that but the country was barely ready for anything. His reforms worked but the effects of those reforms were felt only after Putin came to power. And Putin had other ideas in mind. So the GAP between the USSR and Putin was just Yeltsin who had a barely functioning country. He had other priorities at the time. Leadership question matters a lot in a authoritarian country like Russia. What the leader wants is basically the direction of the country. Russia drew the short straw in this regard with Putin.
#15168647
@JohnRawls

Leadership question matters a lot in any country, even a strong democracy with excellent checks and balances. The Russians haven't had a chance to develop their political system because Putin has stopped it from happening, which in turn makes it difficult if not impossible to introduce democratic reforms that are needed for their government. It is because of this political problem, the Russians can't establish good diplomatic relations with it's neighbors and focus on developing their economy. The Russians are like any people, they want results NOW. They want instant gratification. But, the reality is, the change that they REALLY need will take time and that requires a lot of patience and sacrafice. You can't have everything you want right this instant.

Authoritarians like Putin really play off Russian nationalism and from what I gathered the feeling of humiliation Russians felt in the aftermath of the collapse of the Soviet Union. For me, it is truly and terribly sad for me to see Russia go this direction when they could do so much better. It's sad. It really is. Many here in the West honestly have nothing but love for the Russian people.

It's just sad to see the country go in the wrong direction under Putin. They could just do so much better for themselves. You know what I mean? America is not Russia's enemy it's just Russia has got to move on from it's Soviet past and look to the future and build a future that is positive. There is no future in an authoritarian state under Putin for the Russian people.

And you know what has happened to Russia can happen anywhere. There was a danger of that with Trump here in America. Fortunately, we voted him out of office before it was too late for us (hopefully he never gets into office again and I think he should face criminal charges). This is why checks and balances against authoritarian impulses is important in government. Those checks and balances need real teeth too though.
#15168715
Putin bluffed and he and his empire lost))


"The war in Ukraine is not a civil war. It never was. It always has been, and it remains, a Russian invasion.


I’ve lived in Ukraine for seven years to report on the war. During that time I’ve experienced, firsthand, a type of combat that has exceeded in intensity anything I experienced in Iraq and Afghanistan, both as a special operations pilot (my former profession) and while on the ground as a war correspondent...
American support, in any form — whether through diplomatic gestures or weapons — sends a signal to Ukraine’s soldiers and civilians that they haven’t been forgotten, and that the democratic world order, which they want to be a part of so badly, is still worth fighting for. And these days, I think that’s a message the whole world needs to hear.


With history as our guide, one thing is clear: If the war in Ukraine escalates into a far bigger and deadlier conflict, Ukrainians and Russians won’t be the only ones fighting in it"

https://coffeeordie.com/ukraine-war-fighting-for-us/
#15168716
Politics_Observer wrote:@litwin

I don't know what it was but one thing is FOR SURE, I am glad Putin didn't invade. That saved a lot of heartache for a lot of people. Thank god he didn't order those troops into Ukraine.

@JohnRawls



I saw in the news where NATO has a rotation of fighter pilots helping to guard Estonian skies from Russian incursions. Poland had a rotation of fighter pilots and then our pilots replaced the Polish fighter pilots given that the polish pilots completed their deployment and it was our turn. They have been intercepting Russian Migs which have flown into Estonian air space before making them fly away.

@political

Anytime a powerful leader brings out the troops like that, it's very serious business. I don't know if Russia would have collapsed but I will say that was a lot of Russian armor massed at the Ukrainian border. That shit isn't a game and a lot of people could have died if he ordered his troops into Ukraine. I suspected Putin didn't intend to attack and was just trying to send a message given his forces weren't utilizing speed and surprise.


https://coffeeordie.com/ukraine-war-fighting-for-us/
#15168717
litwin wrote:https://coffeeordie.com/ukraine-war-fighting-for-us/


That's a good article.

UKRAINIANS ARE FIGHTING FOR US

By Nolan Peterson | April 15, 2021

Trench warfare is a true test of a soldier’s grit. The thing is, there’s no escaping the danger. You could die just as easily while walking to the toilet as you could while holding the line under artillery fire. You never know when the shelling will start or when a sniper has you in his sights. In the end, your chances of survival usually just depend on good luck and the odds of not being in the wrong place at the wrong time. As they say — it’s better to be lucky than good.

After seven years of constant combat in their country’s embattled, eastern Donbas region, some Ukrainian soldiers have learned to simply laugh at the danger and treat the war like a sport. Others grow quiet and gloomy, imagining at every moment how they could die. And then, there are those exceptional warriors who are able to see the war for the tragedy it truly is and go on fighting anyway.

In the summer of 2015, while embedded with the Ukrainian regular army in the front-line village of Pisky, I befriended a young soldier named Daniel Kasyanenko who was among this rare breed. He was only 19, but Daniel had an uncanny ability to put the war in perspective. He understood the toll that combat was taking on his young soul and recognized the war was not black and white.

“Maybe they’re not all bad guys,” he told me about his enemies.

Yet, Daniel never failed to pull the trigger when he had to. Consequently, the things he had done and seen in war haunted him. He told me that war had “ruined him” and his “understanding of life.” It would have been better to go to war as an old man, he confided.

Image

Ukraine war, Daniel Kasyanenko
Daniel Kasyanenko, 19, said he had gone to war to fight a Russian invasion. Photo courtesy of Marina and Konstantin Kasyanenko.

When I left the front lines, Daniel and I pledged to stay in touch. We talked about the possibility of him coming to America one day, which was his dream. But a few days after I’d returned to Kyiv, I received a somewhat disjointed text message from Daniel.

He’d been injured by a mortar, he told me, and had what the Ukrainian medics called a “brain contusion,” which probably meant he had a concussion, or, more likely, a traumatic brain injury. In any case, Daniel’s commanders gave him a few weeks’ leave to go back to his hometown of Zaporizhia, only a three-hour car ride from the front lines.

Well, Daniel explained that he’d run out of money on the way home and needed my help to buy a bus ticket. It wasn’t much, and I was more than happy to help and wired him some cash. It was the least I could do, under the circumstances.

Daniel spent a couple of weeks at home, living with his parents, Marina and Konstantin. It was a tough time for Daniel’s parents as they tried, over and over, to convince their son that he didn’t have to go back to war.

And the truth is, he didn’t.

You see, when Russia invaded Ukraine in the summer of 2014, Daniel, like so many young men and women in Ukraine at the time, simply headed for the front lines and joined the ranks of an irregular militia that had formed to fight the Russian invasion. These volunteers learned how to be soldiers while on the front lines with no formal training. They jokingly called it “natural selection” training. Daniel, for his part, was only 19 when he went to war. He went straight from living under his parents’ roof to living under Russian artillery and sniper fire. There was no chance for him to become a man before he became a soldier.

Marina later told me that she would watch her son sleeping while he was home on convalescent leave. He’d changed so much in the few months he’d been away, she remarked.

“He went to war as a boy and came back as a wise old man,” she said.

On the day he left to go back to war, Marina begged her son to stay. “You’re too young,” she told him.

“Mom, I have to go back,” Daniel answered. “I have to go back to my friends. It’s my duty.”

He did. And two weeks later, a mortar killed Daniel during a battle in Pisky. He was just 19.

Image
Ukraine war, Daniel Kasyanenko
Marina and Konstantin Kasyanenko show the uniform of their son, Daniel. Photo by Nolan Peterson.

After Daniel’s death, I reached out to his parents, and my wife and I took a trip to Zaporizhia to meet them. There, I asked Marina if it was okay for me to use her story as a way to tell people about the war in Ukraine, and what her son had died fighting for.

She replied, “You do what you can to prevent our boys from dying. The whole world must learn the truth about the war in Ukraine.”

So, here’s the truth.

The war in Ukraine is not a civil war. It never was. It always has been, and it remains, a Russian invasion.

I’ve lived in Ukraine for seven years to report on the war. During that time I’ve experienced, firsthand, a type of combat that has exceeded in intensity anything I experienced in Iraq and Afghanistan, both as a special operations pilot (my former profession) and while on the ground as a war correspondent.

In September 2014, for instance, I watched a tank battle from a hilltop in the coastal city of Mariupol. Yes, a tank battle. In Europe. In our time. It was like something out of a Hollywood movie. Except, it wasn’t. It was for real.

The next day, I toured that battlefield. It was Sept. 5, 2014, the day the war’s first cease-fire was signed. What I saw was a wasteland of destroyed tanks and armored personnel carriers. And lots of dead soldiers too, their charred, ruined bodies scattered on the ground, frozen in the moments and the motions of their deaths like the plaster molds of the dead at Pompeii.

I’d never seen a war like that. But what was even more shocking is that it all felt like a secret. And it still does.


Today, Ukrainian troops remain entrenched along a 250-mile-long front line in Ukraine’s eastern Donbas region. There, Ukraine’s military continues to fight a static trench war against a combined force of pro-Russian separatists, foreign mercenaries, and Russian regulars. And with Russian troops massing by the tens of thousands on Ukraine’s frontier, the possibility of a much larger war seems very real these days.

So far, the war has killed some 14,000 Ukrainians — roughly half that number died after the Minsk II cease-fire went into effect in February 2015. And with 1.7 million people who still can’t go home because of the conflict, Europe’s only ongoing land war is also the continent’s biggest humanitarian crisis.

Under the guise of a separatist rebellion, Russian Special Forces and intelligence units orchestrated an irregular-warfare takeover of the Donbas in the spring of 2014. The preceding February, Ukrainian protesters had braved snipers on Kyiv’s central square during a revolution to overthrow Viktor Yanukovych, the country’s pro-Russian president. At its heart, the revolution was about the country turning away from Russia toward a pro-European, pro-Western, pro-democratic future.

Yet, through a campaign of weaponized propaganda, Russia painted its 2014 seizure of Crimea and the ensuing conflict in the Donbas as a grassroots uprising created and led by disaffected Russian-speaking Ukrainians who believed the new government in Kyiv was illegitimate.

Image

Mariupol demonstration
A pro-Ukrainian demonstration in the city of Mariupol in September 2014. Photo by Nolan Peterson.
For Kyiv, the situation was dire in the summer of 2014. Combined Russian-separatist forces were on the march, and there were worries then that Ukraine could be split in two, or that Russia might launch a large-scale invasion. At that time, Ukraine’s regular army had been depleted by decades of corruption and was only able to field about 6,000 combat-ready soldiers. Officials advised citizens in Kyiv to use the city’s metro as a shelter in case of a Russian attack. Spray-painted signs on the sides of buildings pointing to the nearest bomb shelters became ubiquitous sights in cities across Ukraine.

In those early months of the war, with Ukraine’s regular army on its heels, everyday Ukrainians filled the ranks of irregular, civilian combat units. Meanwhile, legions of volunteers collected and delivered supplies to support the front-line troops — often at great risk. It was a grassroots war effort, underscoring a widespread attitude of self-reliance among Ukrainian citizens who were unwilling to wait for the government to act in a moment of crisis.

By July of 2014, Ukraine’s ragtag armed forces (the “Bad News Bears” of war, as I call them) had retaken 23 out of the 36 districts previously under combined Russian-separatist control. With its troops on the march, it looked, briefly, like Kyiv might be able to take back all the territory it had previously lost to Russia’s proxies. But then, in August, Russia sent thousands of its own troops and massive amounts of weaponry and military hardware into the conflict.

Many Ukrainians feared a full-scale Russian invasion was in the works; a sack on the port city of Mariupol looked imminent. A September 2014 cease-fire prevented the war from escalating to catastrophic levels. However, that first cease-fire quickly collapsed, and the subsequent Minsk II cease-fire in February 2015 ultimately froze the conflict along its current geographical boundaries.

But the war never ended.

Image
Ukraine war Pisky
Years of war have left the eastern Ukrainian town of Pisky a destroyed wasteland. Photo by Nolan Peterson.

The status quo stalemate along the trench lines in eastern Ukraine has developed into a volatile standoff in which Europe’s two largest standing land armies, in terms of manpower, exchange daily fire. It’s become a long-range battle mainly fought with indirect-fire weapons like mortars and artillery. For the most part, soldiers hardly ever see at whom they’re shooting — except for the snipers, which I always thought was the most terrifying part of this war. Unlike the arbitrary, haphazard threat of artillery, when a sniper shoots at you, it’s personal — someone is specifically looking through a scope, trying to kill you.

At some places, no man’s land can be several miles wide. At others, the Ukrainians and their enemies are close enough to shout insults at one another. In the front-line town of Shyrokyne, for example, I was on hand in 2015 when drunk soldiers from the Russian side crawled up to the Ukrainians’ lines in the night and challenged them to single, unarmed combat to the death. Like gladiators, or something.

Altogether, it’s a bizarre conflict, blending modern technology like drones and electronic warfare with battlefield conditions similar to those of the World War I trenches — albeit on a much smaller scale. When not in the trenches, the Ukrainian troops usually live in the basements of abandoned homes. It’s simply too dangerous to spend much time above ground with the constant shelling and sniper fire.

Every second, in the back of your mind, you’re worried about dying. And that constant background din of danger was far different from what I experienced on deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan, in which we had relatively safe places to return to and decompress between missions.

Image

Many towns in eastern Ukraine, such as Semyonovka, shown here, were heavily damaged by fighting in 2014. Photo by Nolan Peterson.

Yet, even with all the hardships they face, Ukraine’s troops have learned how to adapt. War has become their way of life. The same goes for those Ukrainian civilians left living within the war zone. It has always amazed me how life goes on in spite of the war. Children still attend school, even amid the daily shelling. Shops and grocery stores are still open. Families still gather together for dinner. In Mariupol, for example, there’s a veteran-owned restaurant that delivers pizzas to the front lines.

One of the most striking examples of this coexistence of normal life with the war was in the front-line town of Lobacheve. A river divides the town — Ukrainians control one side, combined Russian-separatist forces control the other. But there’s only one school in town. So each day the opposing camps agree to two short cease-fires so that the town’s children can take a ferry across the river, going to and from school.

I witnessed one of these bizarre, brief timeouts from the war in 2016, and it was surreal to watch the Ukrainian soldiers casually standing on the riverbank, smoking cigarettes, waving at their enemies on the other shore. But when the truce was over, the snipers came back out, the soldiers took cover, and the war was back on.

“War is a dark comedy,” a Ukrainian soldier named Andriy told me that day as we scrambled for safety.

There’s obviously no love lost between the two camps, even though many Ukrainians have family in Russia and vice versa. In fact, some older Ukrainian soldiers served in the Red Army alongside Russians during the Soviet era. I’ve even observed some Ukrainian troops sending Facebook messages to their enemies, whom they knew from university or from growing up.

“It’s difficult to make war when the enemy speaks the same language, and they have the same religion,” 54-year-old Ukrainian soldier and Soviet Army veteran Oleksandr Derevyanko said. “But we have to fight this war — we have no choice. Russia attacked us, and we have to defend our motherland.”

Derevyanko fought in Afghanistan as a Soviet soldier in the 1980s.

“In Afghanistan, I learned that it’s easy to start a war, but hard to finish one,” the old soldier told me.

As a veteran of Afghanistan myself, I couldn’t have said it better.

Today, the current war in Ukraine is nothing less than a sword of Damocles suspended over Eastern Europe, threatening to spark a larger conflagration. When the sun goes down tonight, the tracers will cut across the sky. The artillery will rumble. And war-weary soldiers and civilians will hunker down in trenches and in cellars, staving off their fears, as they have for more than seven straight years.

The war goes on and on.

When, and where, will it end?

It’s easy to believe that history automatically arcs in the right direction — that the era of world wars is over. That it could never happen again. But it sure doesn’t feel that way these days in Ukraine.

Remember, just two living generations ago, Ukraine was the deadliest battlefield of the deadliest war in human history. Some of the soldiers who fought in that war, and the civilians who survived it, are still alive today. Thus, no one should think that another war like that is impossible, or that the events of our time are somehow immune to history’s perennial cycles of war and peace.

The American war correspondent Martha Gellhorn once wrote:

“Unless they are immediate victims, the majority of mankind behaves as if war was an act of God which could not be prevented; or they behave as if war elsewhere was none of their business. It would be a bitter cosmic joke if we destroy ourselves due to atrophy of the imagination.”

You see, the war in Ukraine isn’t just the front line against Russian military aggression. It’s also the front line to defend the spirit, and the promise, of democracy.

American support, in any form — whether through diplomatic gestures or weapons — sends a signal to Ukraine’s soldiers and civilians that they haven’t been forgotten, and that the democratic world order, which they want to be a part of so badly, is still worth fighting for. And these days, I think that’s a message the whole world needs to hear.

With history as our guide, one thing is clear: If the war in Ukraine escalates into a far bigger and deadlier conflict, Ukrainians and Russians won’t be the only ones fighting in it.
#15168722
late wrote:He was trying to scare the West, cage rattling.

Too early to say how successful it was.

US Senate Committee Unanimously Approved bill to Increase Military Aid to Ukraine as moscow gathers troops. SFRC passed bill authorizing$300 million in aid/year to Ukraine
#15168723
Heisenberg wrote:On a side note, it's very amusing to me that Russia conducting military exercises within its own borders is seen as "aggressive", but when the US and UK send soldiers to Estonia, Poland or Ukraine for the same purpose it is portrayed as "defensive". It's a funny world we live in.


Well Russia are well within their rights to train wherever given it is Russian territory. Although clearly the reason they did it by the border was to send a message. Very much like when Russia sailed their Navy down the English Channel during the Salisbury Poisoning. I don't think we have anything to worry given Ukraine isn't attacking and Russia is returning back home. I guess there be back training again should things escalate in the Future. :hmm:
#15168727
B0ycey wrote:Well Russia are well within their rights to train wherever given it is Russian territory. Although clearly the reason they did it by the border was to send a message. Very much like when Russia sailed their Navy down the English Channel during the Salisbury Poisoning. I don't think we have anything to worry given Ukraine isn't attacking and Russia is returning back home. I guess there be back training again should things escalate in the Future. :hmm:


Ukraine "not attacking" Ukraine's own territory :roll: while Russia has every right to move its troops in its territory and apparently in its neighbours territory also, the Ukraine does not have the right to move troops inside it's own territory.
#15168729
noemon wrote:Ukraine "not attacking" Ukraine's own territory :roll: while Russia has every right to move its troops in its territory and apparently in its neighbours territory also, the Ukraine does not have the right to move troops inside it's own territory.


Well they signed up to the ceasefire and I guess Russia is informing them the 'Russian way' of the consequences if they neglect that. Right or wrong they will have to fight for Donbass if they want it back and ultimately may loose Keiv by doing so because nobody is willing to back them up. In the meantime Russia is acting in a way that is internationally accepted and very much like the NATO wargames in that regard although, both of course have covert messages attached to them and I suspect that was Heisenbergs point.
#15168730
Russia is not acting in any way that is “internationally accepted”. Neither you nor Heisenberg represent that thing, but merely bog standard Russian apologies.

Russia is acting like an ultra-aggressive imperialist, occupying its neighbours, causing havoc just to prevent them from integrating with their European neighbours and essentially to prevent them from having a normal peaceful life.
#15168731
noemon wrote:Russia is not acting in any way that is “internationally accepted”. Neither you nor Heisenberg represent that thing, but merely bog standard Russian apologies.

She is acting like an aggressive imperialist, occupying its neighbours to prevent them from integrating with their European neighbours.


How is training on your own territory not Internationally accepted? Although I only see the Western Media analysing this anyway and the West is merely keeping an eye out for escalation. Naturally they threat sanctions but given Russian is ending the troop build up clearly they never intended to enter Ukraine at all. This was merely retort.
#15168734
B0ycey wrote:How is training on your own territory not Internationally accepted? Although I only see the Western Media analysing this anyway and the West is merely keeping an eye out for escalation. Naturally they threat sanctions but given Russian is ending the troop build up clearly they never intended to enter Ukraine at all. This was merely retort.


Russia is occupying parts of the Ukraine that it only recently invaded. Russian amassing an army there for spillover to take place is not "internationally accepted" in any way, shape or form.

The utter lack of integrity from Europe & the UK is what either way should not be "internationally accepted".
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