Ukraine Mess

goatwack

No deal, tramp
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Yes, seems Russia hasn't taken kindly to Finland & Sweden's pleas to align themselves with NATO, and slowly but surely, 'sides' are formed, almost like a prelude to a bigger 'conflict' yet to come....

Ah screw it, WWIII, may as well call it for what it is. Can't CM just send their own envoy of Ternur & Kroffe? Just get Ternur rat-arsed on rum and throw a suit on him, whilst Kroffe could dig out his very finest Furries costume. Peace ensues in all the land 🤔
 

ternur

The sky decorated in a spectrum of dreams
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Can't CM just send their own envoy of Ternur & Kroffe? Just get Ternur rat-arsed on rum and throw a suit on him, whilst Kroffe could dig out his very finest Furries costume. Peace ensues in all the land 🤔

We're already on top of the situation.

Our first exercise in the woods made it fairly clear we might need some help though...

svenska.gif
 

anddi32

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I live in Helsinki, capital city of Finland. I try to explain how i see things here.

Our NATO application will be sent next tuesday. At monday here is parliamentary session where the matter is discussed about application and then official voting. I guess Sweden will send the application at the same time.

Putin's "retaliations":
I don't how the foreign media deal with things. But no, military actions are not the most realistic scenario. Most of all we expect different types of harassment: Airspace violations, power outages, cyber attacks, the collapse of banking services, asylum seekers on the eastern border etc. Maybe Russia increase military strength too on the eastern border we don't know. And all this because of the theater. If Russia would do nothing it would give a weak picture and that's why Kreml needs to "punish" us somehow.

I think Putin knows that Russia can't prevent Finland (and Sweden) to join NATO. We are solid part of European Union and pure western countries. Finland has not been military non-aligned since 90's because we have a lot of military contracts with various countries and we have been NATO partner country for a long time. Actually although we are not part of NATO our military material is largely compatible with NATO stuff.

I personally believe that in real life Russia doesn't see Finland's NATO-membership as a security threat. It's more about neighbouring country and loss of influence what's the biggest problem in Russia. Many people here say that we did not decide on NATO membership. It was Putin's decision. Ukrainian war has a lot of price tags and Finland's NATO-membership is one of them.

So we are not preparing for war and we do not believe that Russia will respond militarily to Finland's NATO application. Of course, the situation is a bit waity because no one know how Russia will respond. But there is no signals that it would be any military kind of stuff.
 
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bamberfishcake

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I saw in the comments that Finland has a contingency in place, as you would imagine countries do, and that only 10% of power comes from Russia. Not sure how true that is or any of the details really.

Just worrying that many countries are funnelling weapons to Ukraine to support the war effort but not actually getting involved while the weapons manufacturers rake it in, and concerning that some may be rubbing their hands together at the thought of a drawn-out conflict. All the while Putin must be looking at where the weapons are coming from and adding them to his hit list.

Still, it looks like brave Sir @ternur has it in hand, and is behind enemy lines, ready to infiltrate the Kremlin.

 

anddi32

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I saw in the comments that Finland has a contingency in place, as you would imagine countries do, and that only 10% of power comes from Russia. Not sure how true that is or any of the details really.
Yes last night Russia stopped electricity imports to Finland. But we don't care it's just 10% of total generation what came from Russia. Gas imports are different thing 92% of our natural gas comes from Russia so let's see what happens near future.

Our government have some plans to replace russian gas like "natural gas ship" in cooperation with Estonia but but these plans will not materialize for months.
 

paul7388

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25 Billion in weapons committed by the US alone. NATO has not given a single fighter jet however, why?


As the Ukranian pilots are not trained in using other types of fighter jets.

And also same as the reason for not having the no fly zone. NATO decided that supplying fighter jets would be to risky. They have supplied missile launchers and various weapons but not planes.

Think something to do with not wanting to risk it being seen as taking an active role and risking the ear escalating outside Ukraine.

Even now the missiles supplied to Ukraine can only travel a certain distance whereas planes would be able to hit anywhere in Russia easily.
 

bamberfishcake

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As the Ukranian pilots are not trained in using other types of fighter jets.

And also same as the reason for not having the no fly zone. NATO decided that supplying fighter jets would be to risky. They have supplied missile launchers and various weapons but not planes.

Think something to do with not wanting to risk it being seen as taking an active role and risking the ear escalating outside Ukraine.

Even now the missiles supplied to Ukraine can only travel a certain distance whereas planes would be able to hit anywhere in Russia easily.
Gave you a 'way to go' on the second post for hammering home your point.

Yes, it's almost like the allies are content with Ukraine being given enough to defend themselves, but not escalate the problem. Kind of makes you wonder what the end game is for them if that's the approach - fend Russia off and eventually push them back across the border? What happens after that, and how long will that take?

The sanctions are also hitting Russia hard. Hopefully, China won't be providing any more support than parts for repairs, I guess sneaking in weapons would be hard to disguise and would get found on the field eventually.

Even more hopeful of a swift resolution for the Ukrainian people.
 

bamberfishcake

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someone need to give up, or this war will go on for years, and I dont think USA is ready to spend 25b every year for next 5 years or more

You don't subscribe to the idea that they are happy to make money from a proxy war?

Just saw there is a news blackout across Ukraine.



Found myself for the first time thinking about the presentation and delivery of this news report. Got me thinking about the enthusiasm and pitch, almost like a game show presenter reading the rules. I don't remember the news about war being so casual.
 

justdoit

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You don't subscribe to the idea that they are happy to make money from a proxy war?

Just saw there is a news blackout across Ukraine.



Found myself for the first time thinking about the presentation and delivery of this news report. Got me thinking about the enthusiasm and pitch, almost like a game show presenter reading the rules. I don't remember the news about war being so casual.

only US and Turkey are making money from Ukraine, and Iran with North Korea from Russia, UK is not making money they busy with tax cuts 😂
 

bamberfishcake

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only US and Turkey are making money from Ukraine, and Iran with North Korea from Russia, UK is not making money they busy with tax cuts 😂
Let's not forget France, Germany, Spain etc. Think I heard a mention of Sweden and Finland supplies. There are shareholders around the world to impress.

I forget the article or news clip I saw, but it listed billions from multiple countries.
 

Deeplay

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The family who are with us next door - showed me photos of their city and the Hydro power plant where the grandfather worked for years. Now pretty much destroyed - there is (was) a major sluice running from the plant to the processing unit - the Russians tried to fix this using rubber tyres - most of the City this family is from has been destroyed. They lost literally everything - arrived with 6 cases and a few bags nothing more. The apartment that the grandparents lived in for years does not exist any more.

My gf is from Zaporizhzhia but has lived in Germany for many years - she always had a deep hatred of Putin - and I never really understood it until this year. We continue to help this family trying to reset and thankfully they are getting more and more settled. But hard to imagine losing everything - apart from what you can carry. The anger and sense of outrage runs deep in all of them.
 

shadow123

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Goto feel sorry for Ukraine and its people,their history has been nothing but wars and destruction,we take peace
so much for granted in europe and cant imagine what they are going through.
No idea what the end game is, but it can only be resolved by Putins demise or serious negociations, neither of which
seem to be on the cards at the moment.
 

Luckyscouser45

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One has to wonder though why zelensky is asking for billions none stop and we are sending it without hesitation. Charity starts at home. We are all feeling the pinch and I have a bad taste when tax payer money is being sent over there. Neither side is interested in peace might I add. Something about zelensky rubs me the wrong way I can't shake the feeling
 

mack341

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Apologies for posting this in full length, but found it a very interesting article, a glimpse into how the real world works.

From the spectator, 13 march 2022:

Who is Ihor Kolomoisky?

The warlord oligarch who supported Volodymyr Zelensky


The city of Cleveland, Ohio, is hardly considered the most cosmopolitan or globalised city in the U.S. If anything, the Rust Belt city – whose population is less than half of what it was a century ago – is a symbol of industrial decline across America’s heartland, for a region whose best days are clearly behind it.

Which is why, as other major American cities like New York or Miami opened their doors to all kinds of oligarchic money out of places like Russia or Ukraine, Cleveland hardly got any attention as a destination for the kinds of illicit wealth spilling out of the former Soviet Union. Investigators searched out ill-gotten gains in Manhattan and Malibu. They ignored Cleveland, assuming globe-trotting oligarchs would never bother with a Midwestern city in clear decline.

How wrong they were.

As investigators and authorities now know, one of the most notorious oligarchs out of the former Soviet space oversaw a trans-national money laundering scheme of historic proportions – and used places like Cleveland, in addition to a number of other small towns across the American Midwest, to hide and launder hundreds of millions of dollars.

With no one paying attention, this oligarch, a Ukrainian national named Ihor Kolomoisky, steered one of the biggest Ponzi schemes in world history, and ended up becoming one of the biggest real estate landlords in mid-west America.

Kolomoisky may not be a household name, even with the recent uptick in interest in oligarchs and kleptocracy. But just because he’s perhaps less known than oligarchs like Roman Abramovich doesn’t make Kolomoisky any less important – or, for those in Ukraine, any less dangerous.

Born in Soviet Ukraine in 1963, Kolomoisky scrambled to make a living during the Soviet collapse of the early 1990s. Emerging in newly independent Ukraine, Kolomoisky followed a range of other oligarchs around the region, pocketing formerly state-owned enterprises like steel plants to gas wells at fire-sale prices.

Kolomoisky had two advantages over other nascent oligarchs, though. First, he had a background in metallurgy – in the science of making and moulding metals and alloys in demand. Secondly, Kolomoisky displayed a ruthlessness that made even other oligarchs, no strangers to violent crime, blanch.

Engaging in reiderstvo, or outright raiding, Kolomoisky seized asset after asset across Ukraine, reportedly paying off local judges and magistrates in the process.

One instance, as Forbes reported, saw 'hundreds of hired rowdies armed with baseball bats, iron bars, gas and rubber bullet pistols and chainsaws forcibly [take] over' a steel plant that Kolomoisky eyed.

Elsewhere, Kolomoisky once lined the lobby of a Russian oil company he wanted to push out with a series of coffins. For the full

Bond villain effect, he even maintained a shark tank in his office, which he would fill with bloody chum whenever he wanted to intimidate a visitor.

For the public, though, Kolomoisky tried to maintain a jovial persona. Chubby, often seen chuckling, Kolomoisky earned the nickname 'Benya', after the cuddly, eponymous Soviet-era cartoon lion. He 'tries to create an image that he’s a kind grandpa, this kind, funny old man,' Daria Kalenyuk, one of Ukraine’s leading anticorruption advocates, told me.

By the mid-2010s, Kolomoisky was one of the most powerful figures in Ukraine. The oligarch even grew his portfolio to oversee one of Ukraine’s biggest banks, PrivatBank, refashioning himself as a steward of Ukraine’s finance sector. In the aftermath of Ukraine’s 2014 EuroMaidan Revolution, when Russian troops first began pushing into Ukraine, the oligarch then refashioned himself into a supporter of Ukrainian statehood.

Bankrolling a new militia in central Ukraine, the oligarch said in the third person, 'A large number of people think Kolomoisky’s great – and the only patriot in the country.'

Others saw something different: an oligarch turned into a warlord, building his own power base in the middle of the country. 'I think Kolomoisky is super-dangerous,' one American diplomat later said. 'He was one of the first oligarchs who began to act like a warlord.'

When a new government rose in Kyiv, and new reformers swept into power, they had questions about how it was that Kolomoisky could afford his empire. And when they began looking into PrivatBank’s books, they came away shocked. Billions were missing. The cupboards were, in essence, bare – no one knew where the money had gone.

Immediately, the government rushed a $5.5-billion bailout to PrivatBank, trying to patch this gaping hole in one of the country’s biggest banks. And then they began looking for the disappeared funds – and discovering the money buried in places they never expected, like Cleveland.

As both Ukrainian investigators and American authorities have detailed, Kolomoisky allegedly oversaw a multi-year, multi-national money laundering scheme meant to loot billions from unsuspecting Ukrainian depositors. On paper, PrivatBank made it seem that a wide range of loans were being fully repaid. In reality, though, those loans never came back to the bank – but instead ended up in entities overseen directly by Kolomoisky. Using shell companies and offshore accounts, much of that money ended up in the US.

But instead of going to places like San Francisco or Los Angeles, that money went places few suspected. The funds ended up in office buildings in Cleveland and Texas. It ended up in steel mills in Kentucky and West Virginia. It ended up in manufacturing plants in Michigan and Illinois. Small towns, steel towns, factory towns – the money Kolomoisky allegedly pilfered ended up drenching blue-collar America.

According to those on the receiving end of the funds, Kolomoisky’s network pledged the money would be used for new investments, for the kinds of economic revitalization the region had long needed. Years later, it was clear that revitalization would never come.

As the Ukrainians and Americans allege, Kolomoisky was never interested in actual investment or profit, but in just getting his money out of Ukraine. And because places like the U.S. offer all the financial secrecy tools these oligarchs need – from anonymous shell companies to anonymous real estate purchases to the lack of basic anti-money laundering policies across the board – Kolomoisky found it all too easy to hide his money for years. The U.S. directly sanctioned Kolomoisky in early 2021, announcing his 'involvement in significant corruption.'

Volodymyr Zelensky, Ukraine’s now President, would not be where he is today without Kolomoisky. As an actor and entertainer, Zelensky had worked for Kolomoisky’s media network — which then gave him form support when he stood as a candidate. Zelensky was seen as the Kolomoisky candidate: he appointed one of Kolomoisky’s lawyers as an adviser, and held meetings with the controversial oligarch even as he campaigned as the ‘anti-oligarch’.

In early 2021, Zelensky reportedly breached his own Covid lockdown rules to have a birthday party in Kolomoisky’s Kyiv apartment.

Today, Zelensky and Kolomoisky appear to have grown apart. Whereas the oligarch once claimed to be a patriot, in recent years he’s begun calling for a new partnership between Ukraine and Russia.

When that happens, Kolomoisky said, 'NATO will be soiling its pants and buying Pampers.'

That’s not a remark that will appeal to the many Ukrainians now suffering from Russia’s bloody invasion, and whose country’s wealth has been endlessly plundered by a string of greedy oligarchs.

It’s also little comfort to those in places like Cleveland, who watched a post-Soviet oligarch sweep in and add their city to his trans-national money laundering network – and watched his promises of revitalisation collapse, leaving nothing but empty husks in his wake.

WRITTEN BY
Casey Michel
Casey Michel is the author of American Kleptocracy.
 

shadow123

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I know what you mean, maybe he is a warmonger underneath and happy to engage the russians,most of what he is demanding
is liable to trigger WW3,can understand him wanting the means to defeat Putins but the sad fact is that Ukraine is only one
country and the rest of us dont want to suffer the consquences.
I dont resent us funding him for defensive weapons, the cost is negligable compared to what Putin has cost the western
economy.
 

Kroffe

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Its probably down to the times we live in today, but the war at times feels incredibly commercialized.
Ive lost count of how many celebrities have flown down there for a photo op, Zelensky and wife posing for Vouge etc.

Like i said its probably mostly down to the digital age we live in today, and we would probably have seen the same things if todays tech were around for older wars but imo it feels bizarre at times.
 

Luckyscouser45

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Its probably down to the times we live in today, but the war at times feels incredibly commercialized.
Ive lost count of how many celebrities have flown down there for a photo op, Zelensky and wife posing for Vouge etc.

Like i said its probably mostly down to the digital age we live in today, and we would probably have seen the same things if todays tech were around for older wars but imo it feels bizarre at times.
The vogue cover zelensky was on with his wife was just atrocious
 

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