Saturday, August 30, 2014

How can you tell whether Russia has invaded Ukraine?

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Last Thursday the Ukrainian government, echoed by NATO spokesmen, declared that the the Russian military is now operating within Ukraine's borders. Well, maybe it is and maybe it isn't; what do you know? They said the same thing before, most recently on August 13, and then on August 17, each time with either no evidence or fake evidence. But let's give them the benefit of the doubt.

You be the judge. I put together this helpful list of top ten telltale signs that will allow you to determine whether indeed Russia invaded Ukraine last Thursday, or whether Thursday's announcement is yet another confabulation. (Credit to Roman Kretsul).

Because if Russia invaded on Thursday morning, this is what the situation on the ground would look like by Saturday afternoon.

1. Ukrainian artillery fell silent almost immediately. They are no longer shelling residential districts of Donetsk and Lugansk. This is because their locations had been pinpointed prior to the operation, and by Thursday afternoon they were completely wiped out using air attacks, artillery and ground-based rocket fire, as the first order of business. Local residents are overjoyed that their horrible ordeal is finally at an end.

2. The look of military activity on the ground in Donetsk and Lugansk has changed dramatically. Whereas before it involved small groups of resistance fighters, the Russians operate in battalions of 400 men and dozens of armored vehicles, followed by convoys of support vehicles (tanker trucks, communications, field kitchens, field hospitals and so on). The flow of vehicles in and out is non-stop, plainly visible on air reconnaissance and satellite photos. Add to that the relentless radio chatter, all in Russian, which anyone who wants to can intercept, and the operation becomes impossible to hide.

3. The Ukrainian military has promptly vanished. Soldiers and officers alike have taken off their uniforms, abandoned their weapons, and are doing their best to blend in with the locals. Nobody thought the odds of the Ukrainian army against the Russians were any good. Ukraine's only military victory against Russia was at the battle of Konotop in 1659, but at the time Ukraine was allied with the mighty Khanate of Crimea, and, you may have noticed, Crimea is not on Ukraine's side this time around.

4. There are Russian checkpoints everywhere. Local civilians are allowed through, but anyone associated with a government, foreign or domestic, is detained for questioning. A filtration system has been set up to return demobilized Ukrainian army draftees to their native regions, while the volunteers and the officers are shunted to pretrial detention centers, to determine whether they had ordered war crimes to be committed.

5. Most of Ukraine's border crossings are by now under Russian control. Some have been reinforced with air defense and artillery systems and tank battalions, to dissuade NATO forces from attempting to stage an invasion. Civilians and humanitarian goods are allowed through. Businessmen are allowed through once they fill out the required forms (which are in Russian).

6. Russia has imposed a no-fly zone over all of Ukraine. All civilian flights have been cancelled. There is quite a crowd of US State Department staffers, CIA and Mossad agents, and Western NGO people stuck at Borispol airport in Kiev. Some are nervously calling everyone they know on their satellite phones. Western politicians are demanding that they be evacuated immediately, but Russian authorities want to hold onto them until their possible complicity in war crimes has been determined.

7. The usual Ukrainian talking heads, such as president Poroshenko, PM Yatsenyuk and others, are no longer available to be interviewed by Western media. Nobody quite knows where they are. There are rumors that they have already fled the country. Crowds have stormed their abandoned residences, and were amazed to discover that they were all outfitted with solid gold toilets. Nor are the Ukrainian oligarchs anywhere to be found, except for the warlord Igor Kolomoisky, who was found in his residence, abandoned by his henchmen, dead from a heart attack. (Contributed by the Saker.)

8. Some of the over 800,000 Ukrainian refugees are starting to stream back in from Russia. They were living in tent cities, many of them in the nearby Rostov region, but with the winter coming they are eager to get back home, now that the shelling is over. Along with them, construction crews, cement trucks and flatbeds stacked with pipe, cable and rebar are streaming in, to repair the damage from the shelling.

9. There is all sorts of intense diplomatic and military activity around the world, especially in Europe and the US. Military forces are on highest alert, diplomats are jetting around and holding conferences. President Obama just held a press conference to announce that “We don't have a strategy on Ukraine yet.” His military advisers tell him that his usual strategy of “bomb a little and see what happens” is not likely to be helpful in this instance.

10. Kiev has surrendered. There are Russian tanks on the Maidan Square. Russian infantry is mopping up the remains of Ukraine's National Guard. A curfew has been announced. The operation to take Kiev resembled “Shock and Awe” in Baghdad: a few loud bangs and then a whimper.

Armed with this list, you too should be able to determine whether or not Russia has invaded Ukraine last Thursday.


Razer said...

It must be "Cynically Humorous Post Day"

Along with this post, I've also sent these out

(Voce 'british accented crackling falsetto') "Have You Got Anything Without War?" (Now imagine the US state department as a Monty Python skit...)

They MIGHT Get Some Rich White People's Money But... Ku Klux Klan Attempts Recruiting Blue Collar Workers From "The Hamptons"

I couldn’t imagine that anyone who possesses the wealth necessary to live in the Hamptons, or be white, and ‘blue’ or ‘lavender collar’, with the social mobility to work in the vicinity, would be prone to donning hoods and attending cross-burnings (see the snap analysis by one worker in the pullquote), and the uber-rich do their schtick at Bohemian Grove, in their underwear, kowtowing to a statue of a mite-infested owl … but I CAN imagine some Rich White People seeing this campaign and funding such ‘pastimes...

ArtS said...

Thanks for providing an antidote to the BS coming out of the mainstream media.

Unknown said...

This is absolutely golden, and I salute you. I've also added it to my debate arsenal for irc...

Thank you, sir.

Rhisiart Gwilym said...

Wonderful! Made my day!

edboyle said...

I am also looking at the end game. How long until novorussians reach odessa, dnepropetrovsk, charkov, kiev and win and will the new maidan revolution throw out the regime long before that? How long will this take and will the dnieper be the new border and will russia accept the new entity and eu the wester half and how long will this all take, months?

James Marshall VI said...

I agree. Russia has not invaded Ukraine, although a few "oops, was that the border?" events might have happened.

On the other hand, we know there are some Russian people who oppose their government's decision not to help the Russian separatists. Those Russians (including ex-military) are quite possibly crossing that porous border to assist the Russians living in Ukraine, in much the same way Americans who opposed U.S. isolationism joined the Lafayette Escadrille prior to official U.S. involvement in W.W.I, or American who joined the Republicans in the Spanish Civil War, etc. Such is human nature and I don't worry about them. If I see credible photos of heavy armor in Russian separatist hands, that's when I'll start to wonder exactly how involved the Russian government is becoming.

But yes, if RUSSIA invades Ukraine, then Dmitry's timeline is credible, with the added issue of Ukrainian "terrorists" (a.k.a. people whose homes have been taken over by foreign forces, plus criminal elements trying to gain power) attacking Russian forces.

Honestly, this is the time the U.S. could step back, say, "We're not the world's policeman any more, so let the rest of the world decide what should be done," and somewhat gracefully return to non-hyperpower status. Of course, it won't, but I can dream.

jc carry said...

Dmitry, I have bought a couple of your books and love to introduce new people to your writings.

The Russian language has many untranslatable concepts, such as
"poshlost" which Vladimir Nabokov introduced in his book on Nokolai Gogol's Dead Souls.

The meaning of poshlost seems to be a facade, sham, self important fraud, ...this applies to any politician.

Maybe you could add to this definition.

Regarding collapse, any civilization which judges its progress by how much junk people buy and sell (GDP) will have tha complete contempt of future generations...if there are any.


Very good article Dmitri, bravo! I would only add a wish to your list "Igor Kolomoiski has been found dead in his apartment, apparently from a heart attack".

My most sincere congratulations on a wonderful blog and all your excellent work!

Kind regards,

The Saker

Unknown said...

You're amazing. Best post I've read in days.

patriciaormsby said...

Yesterday, the Japanese government broadcaster, NHK, ran a snippet of Zakharchenko's press conference with him admitting to receiving regular Russian troops and making a threat on Kiev. Today, I had a look at the entire press conference, thanks to the Saker and to Paul Craig Roberts for the link. Apparently, NHK left off the "if" in "If we were receiving regular Russian troops, we would not be fighting in Elenovka..." So now anyone who still takes NHK seriously thinks the rebels have admitted to receiving official military support from Russia and are threatening an assault on Kiev.

A week ago, we got some prime-time truth out of NHK (probably, I think the other broadcasters are focused more locally) about the Ukraine situation, but they've reverted to outright lies. This morning NHK showed all the EU leaders lined up condemning Russia for its military incursion, when all of them know, as Dmitry has made so clear, that it is plain nonsense.

Regarding NHK, my husband (Japanese) notes that there are two factions. (Someone on TV even came out and said there are these two factions.) One does whatever the CIA wants, and the other tries to tell the truth. The truth-tellers are generally relegated to post midnight, with one truth teller on the "Morning Bird" discussion of mostly economic topics.
The average Japanese, however, does not pay any attention whatsoever to either faction. If Prime Minister Abe tells them we are going to war against Russia, they'll say, "Oh, that's nice."

Fez Fezm said...

Hi Dmitri and thanks for the humour. Also i just received (31st August)and now enjoying your 'Societies That Collapse' book in the mail, all the way to New Zealand. Feels very relevant, especially seeing the published date 'August 2014' Keep up the good work mate

Paul said...

Dmitry, you are one sarcastic SOB! .... As fulsome a compliment as they come, according to my lexicon.

As is the word, 'mad'. But then, to be considered mad in a mad world, you know....

How prophetic your comment about most American police being border-line psychotics. Well, it's hardly new, admittedly. There was no need for you to look in the crystal ball, when you could already read the book. But your occasionally brutally forthright comments are virtually unknown in the West, I think.

James Kunstler's prose has some wonderful 'purple patches', when he's in full flow, but it's more at one remove. Satire, which tends to have a slightly light-hearted dimension to it.

Truth being stranger than fiction, satire normally beats the truth, but the truths you write are so savage, they come across as particularly pungent satire, making for sublime humour for those of us with an ever so slightly twisted, schadenfreudian mind.

It's as if you're not trying to be funny. And you aren't!!! Very like Australian humour. But that's in terms of their jokes, which they tell in such a deadpan way, you do a double-take, and wonder if they realise just how funny the thing they said was!

I don't want to upset you Dmitry, but you could have written some of the savage, deadpan humour in the Bible!

jo6pac said...

Thanks great post for sure

Tar and Feather The Bastards said...

Just Imagine the response that this "invasion" would cause.. . . "We are set to announce a new, more punitive (there's that word that I have loved in describing the Nazguard battalions) round of sanctions upon the Russian Federation . . . . What ?? - thats going to accelerate the demise of our economy - I'm sure thats not how it's meant to work is it??"
No but the US have told us just do it . . . if we know whats good for us even though it's not good for us !"

Welcome to "the new reality part of the march towards Full Spectrum Dominance"

Milutin said...

Marvellous. An excellent case for Russia to invade "Ukraine" ... I mean to liberate Malorussia.

What on earth is Putin waiting for?... Instead of "negotiating" with his Zionazi "partner" Poroshenko, he should proceed to Kiev and beyond.

John T said...

Keep up the good work.

I listened to NPR Friday morning after reading at The Saker. On and on they went about the so-called Russian invasion finally adding in the end "events could not be independently verified" or some such wiggle out. Not a word at The Saker. I knew the NPR story was meant only to plant a seed in the minds of the largely gullible American people.

Also, I'm totally enjoying "Societies that Collapse," well worth the purchase price.

Val said...

I'm wondering how much of the push for control of eastern Ukraine has to do with the fact that the Donbas region has apparently got a lot of coal? I just found an entry from an old Soviet encyclopedia (1979) that says one geologist suggested back in 1932 that the Greater Donets coal basin extends from the north Caucasus almost to Kiev:

This would seem to be quite a valuable fossil fuel resource. Just how much coal is left, and how good is its quality? Does this information mean that the eastern half of Ukraine could become like Swiss cheese for coal mines?

Right now, from what I've read, Donbas is a rustbucket of old factories and decaying mine infrastructure. They smelt steel, with Russia as a major customer. Maybe one thing the west wants is to bring in a lot of shiny new mining equipment to extract whatever mineral wealth is there and sell it on the global market. If so, I expect it's to be a wealth extraction operation, like stripping Greece of its public assets, or drilling for Nigerian oil without any particular benefit to the locals (other than the putschmeisters and an assortment of other bought personnel).

Is this conflict about wealth-stripping and resources, or is it principally a frantic fevered clutching for dominance by a senile superpower? Is it immoral but rational in its goals, or immoral and insane?

V. Arnold said...

The U.S. is scaring the hell out of me with this overly aggressive and blatant involvement in the coup in Ukraine.
Thank doG for Putin's cool handed confidence as a player.
Your (Dmitri)blog post is a most welcome illumination of the lies and obfuscation coming from the west; most especially America.

jamesmmm said...

Hey D great article...

years ago I quoted you in my own 'master' document alongside Solzhenitsyns' Harvard commencement remarks (you were comparing the former USSR system to the 2 party system in the USA. I lost track of you and 'From the (be)wildernss' I can't wait to read more at cluborlov!
Peace and love!

Etyere Petyere said...

Excellent ... Künstler has also a very good article this week "Busybody Nation" on the situation

Paul said...

'Along with them, construction crews, cement trucks and flatbeds stacked with pipe, cable and rebar are streaming in, to repair the damage from the shelling.'

What heartening words they sound, and how much more so, if they had referred to an uncharacteristically communal-spiritedness on the part of the UK or US governments towards their respective citizenry. We can only dream.

Morpho blanco said...

I'm happy I discovered this man article from a very bad information in México .

Spanish fly said...

Ukraine government...what a joke!

michael_in_adelaide said...

Hi Dmitry, Of course you have heard about Joe Biden's son working for a Ukrainian gas company but what interested me when I read into this matter a little is that J. Hunter Biden is also Chairman of the Board of the World Food Programme USA. From Wikipedia:

"He is currently Chairman of the Board of the World Food Program USA....In addition to holding directorships on the Boards of the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition, The Truman National Security Project and the Center for National Policy, he sits on the Chairman’s Advisory Board for the National Democratic Institute (NDI). NDI is a project of the National Endowment for Democracy (NED). Biden is a member of the President’s Advisory board of the Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington; and a member of the board of the Israel Idonije Foundation."

With Ukraine being described as "the breadbasket of Europe" do you think there is any significance to this or is the gas focus more important?

Liam Jackson said...

G'day Mr Orlov & co, i'd be interested in any comments on Matt Mushaliks compilation of reports on shale gas resources in Ukraine..
Apparently Shell was drilling on border of Kharkiv and Donetsk regions, suspended due to hostilities. If there really is alot of gas, might that motivating EU for war?

americatemychildren said...

Solid gold toilets, that's good. Israel is now about to export their agricultural products to Russia because of the success of BDS in Europe. America seems to be relying on the MIC to keep the economy from tanking: for this it needs a bogeyman, an enemy, Vlad the Invader. The Ukraine, like Syria, is replete with gas, albeit shale gas. The last estimate I saw was 33tcm. Monsanto & Cargill have their eyes on Western Ukraine's topsoil, ripe for the killing with pesticides & GMOs. I believe that the Empire wants to colonize Russia, eventually. Step #1, neutralize their nuke deterrent by inching closer & closer.

Honza73 said...

Another sign of Russian invasion would be Poroshenko eating his tie like this guy...:-)))

hamblepoint said...

Yes the Russians should go all the way to Kiev. Today is Thursday. Mariupol is surrounded. By Friday linking up with Crimea. Saturday Sunday Monday at the Romanian border? Kiev before winter sets in?

messianicdruid said...

a letter from Dutch intellectuals:

Dear Mr. President Putin,

Please accept our apologies on behalf of a great many people here in the Netherlands for our Government and our Media. The facts concerning MH17 are twisted to defame you and your country.

We are powerless onlookers, as we witness how the Western Nations, led by the United States, accuse Russia of crimes they commit themselves more than anybody else. We reject the double standards that are used for Russia and the West. In our societies, sufficient evidence is required for a conviction. The way you and your Nation are convicted for 'crimes' without evidence, is ruthless and despicable.

You have saved us from a conflict in Syria that could have escalated into a World War. The mass killing of innocent Syrian civilians through gassing by ‘Al-­‐Qaeda’ terrorists, trained and armed by the US and paid for by Saudi Arabia, was blamed on Assad. In doing so, the West hoped public opinion would turn against Assad, paving the way for an attack on Syria.

Not long after this, Western forces have built up, trained and armed an ‘opposition’ in the Ukraine, to prepare a coup against the legitimate Government in Kiev. The putschists taking over were quickly recognized by Western Governments. They were provided with loans from our tax money to prop their new Government up.

The people of the Crimea did not agree with this and showed this with peaceful demonstrations. Anonymous snipers and violence by Ukrainian troops turned these demonstrations into demands for independence from Kiev. Whether you support these separatist movements is immaterial, considering the blatant Imperialism of the West.

Russia is wrongly accused, without evidence or investigation, of delivering the weapons systems that allegedly brought down MH17. For this reason Western Governments claim they have a right to economically pressure Russia.

We, awake citizens of the West, who see the lies and machinations of our Governments, wish to offer you our apologies for what is done in our name.
It’s unfortunately true, that our media have lost all independence and are just mouthpieces for the Powers that Be. Because of this, Western people tend to have a warped view of reality and are unable to hold their politicians to account.

Our hopes are focused on your wisdom. We want Peace. We see that Western Governments do not serve the people but are working towards a New World Order. The destruction of sovereign nations and the killing of millions of innocent people is, seemingly, a price worth paying for them, to achieve this goal.

We, the people of the Netherlands, want Peace and Justice, also for and with Russia.
We hope to make clear that the Dutch Government speaks for itself only. We pray our efforts will help to diffuse the rising tensions between our Nations.


Professor Cees Hamelink

michigan native said...

Hell yes, crush those cockroaches and roast the fat bastard on a stick. All those European "leaders" who jumped on the demonize Russia/sanctions bandwagon should crawl on their knees and beg for forgiveness.

The latest on the deliberate act of raw terrorism by the fascists in Kiev

It's on record, so unlike Carlos, who disappeared and his twitter account deleted, they can't silence this guy, a Canadian of Ukrainian dissent.

Meanwhile, the silence of the Obama regime is deafening.

Anyone else noticing that scared deer in the headlights more frequently?

telo said...

There have been 16 all in all such Russian military invasions (the ones that were reported through the Ukrainian Media) ever since Feb, 2014. The OSCE that monitors the situation on the ground and outputs daily reports no longer bothers itself responding to the claims. When the Ukrainian representative to the OSCE claimed on August 28 that Russian army had taken over this one city Novoazovsk, they would not even go check. No trip registered in the log for the day and the following. What a farce! Cheers.