Category Archives: Military

Interfax: Kyiv claims partial withdrawal of militia’s heavy weaponry, relocation of forces

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

KYIV. Feb 27 (Interfax) – The heavy arms withdrawal by the Donbas militia from the line of contact has been only partial, and militia forces are being regrouped and bolstered, Kyiv said. “The militants are pulling back their hardware only partially and to distances which can be covered within 30 minutes. Besides, in the words of spokesman for the OSCE […]

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Experts See Dark Plot in Spate of Mystery Bombings in Ukraine

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Allison Quinn – February 26, 2015) As the latest blast in a recent string of mysterious bombings in eastern Ukraine claimed another victim Wednesday, experts warned that there would be more to come – and they could spread the conflict further from the front lines. A Donetsk grocery store became the latest scene of carnage […]

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Is There a Plausible Strategy for the Ukraine Situation?

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

(John Steinbruner – Perspectives on Peace & Security – perspectives.carnegie.org – Carnegie Corporation of New York – February 2015) John Steinbruner Professor, Public Policy Director, Center for International and Security Studies at University of Maryland CUAF – School of Public Policy One year after Russia’s seizure of Crimea, the situation in Ukraine continues to drift toward active military confrontation between […]

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NEWSWATCH: Russia’s military budget may shrink 10 percent in 2015 – Rostec

File Photo of Russian Tanks in Military Parade

[“Russia’s military budget may shrink 10 pct in 2015 – Rostec” – Reuters – Stanley Carvalho – Feb. 23, 2015] Reuters covers news that Russian defense spending might shrink this year, due to the impact of Ukraine-related sanctions. Finance Minister Anton Siluanov previously had said that 10 percent cuts to government spending would spare defense. But on Monday the head of […]

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Swapping a rifle for a mailbag: One Russian’s alternative to army service

File Photo of Russian Military Conscripts Boarding Train with Gear

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Makar Butkov, special to RBTH -February 23, 2015) As in many countries, military service is compulsory in Russia for young men between 18 and 27, yet remains unpopular with many, who find various ways of avoiding the draft. Odd as it may seem, few take up the option of legal alternative civilian service […]

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NEWSWATCH: How to spot a Russian bomber

TU-95 Bear Bomber File Photo

[“How to spot a Russian bomber” – BBC – February 20, 2015] The BBC covers recent incursions by Russian bombers into UK’s area of interest, including information on how to recognize Russian bombers. Two Russian bombers have been escorted from near UK territory – the latest in a series of similar incidents. How easy is it to spot a Russian […]

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NEWSWATCH: Danger to UK safety: Vladimir Putin’s Russian bombers ‘put British passenger jets at risk’

TU-95 Bear Bomber File Photo

[“Danger to UK safety: Vladimir Putin’s Russian bombers ‘put British passenger jets at risk'; Russian bombers in British airspace risk a catastrophic collision with a passenger airliner, a former Armed Forces chief warned yesterday.” – The Daily Express (UK) – Tom Morgan – February 23, 2015] The Daily Express covers recent incidents of Royal Air Force jets being scrambled to […]

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Interfax: Russian general coordinates weapons withdrawal in east Ukraine

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

(Interfax – February 19, 2015) Russian and Ukrainian military representatives are working together to coordinate a plan for withdrawal of heavy weapons in east Ukraine, a Russian general said on Russia’s official state television channel Rossiya 1 on 19 February. Speaking live on the phone in Rossiya’s primetime evening news programme, head of the Russian group for coordinating ceasefire issues […]

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Interfax: DPR Defense Ministry has no information about Ukrainian heavy arms withdrawal

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

DONETSK. Feb 20 (Interfax) – The Ukrainian army has yet to begin the withdrawal of heavy weapons from the line of contact consistent with the Minsk deal, the command of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR) army said. “The DPR Defense Ministry does not have information about the pullout of Ukrainian heavy armaments from the line of contact,” Eduard Basurin […]

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Debaltseve Was Fatal Flaw in Minsk Agreement on Ukraine

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Ivan Nechepurenko – February 19, 2015) When the leaders of Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France spent 17 hours last week negotiating an agreement aimed at stopping the fighting in eastern Ukraine and paving the way for a future fundamental settlement of the crisis, there was one key issue they failed to agree on. This was […]

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Interfax: Russians say external military threat has grown – poll

World Map Showing Continents, Greens, Browns, Ice

(Interfax – February 20, 2015) Sixty-eight percent of Russian citizens recently interviewed by the All Russian Center for Public Opinion Studies (VTsIOM) believe that their country faces a real military threat from outside, as compared with 52 percent of respondents in 2014, and 49 percent in 2000. Twenty-eight percent of those polled took the opposite view (42 percent in 2014). […]

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Moscow Times: Putin Says Russian Intelligence Shows U.S. Is Already Arming Ukraine

Column in Maidan Square in Kiev, Ukraine

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Feb. 18, 2015) Russian President Vladimir Putin has claimed the U.S. is supplying Kiev with lethal weapons, telling reporters that the conflict in Ukraine will not be resolved through military escalation. “According to our intelligence, [U.S.] weapons are already being delivered,” Putin was shown on state television Channel One as telling a press conference on […]

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Interfax: Luhansk republic leader announces “closure” of Debaltseve

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

MOSCOW. Feb 17 (Interfax) – The fighting zone in Debaltseve is closed, so all hostilities are taking place inside the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR), LPR leader Igor Plotnitsky has said. “We have a continuous line. The Debaltseve ‘boiler’ is closed. It is Ukraine who cannot and does not want to recognize this. All hostilities taking […]

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In Ukraine’s West, Patriotism Is One Thing. Fighting’s Quite Another

File Photo of Street in Lviv

(RFE/RL – rferl.org – Daisy Sindelar, Halyna Tereshchuk – MALEKHIV, Lviv Oblast, Ukraine, February 16, 2015) In towns this small, there are three numbers that local officials like Volodymyr Seinkovskiy can recite without even consulting their files: how many of their men are fighting, how many are injured, and how many are dead. In the undeclared Donbas war that has […]

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Ukraine rebels offer safe passage to surrounded Kiev troops

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

(Interfax – February 16, 2015) The self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic (DNR) is ready to offer safe passage to Ukrainian troops surrounded near the settlement of Debaltseve, DNR spokesman Denis Pushilin [Denys Pushylin] has said. “At the present moment we consider it [Debaltseve] our internal territory. We will offer safe passage to Ukrainian troops. They may withdraw without their weapons and […]

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Putin ‘Will Not Advance Further’ in Ukraine, Kyiv Journalist Says

Putin at Desk

(Paul Goble – Staunton, February 16, 2015) Many in Ukraine and elsewhere are fearful that Vladimir Putin will expand his aggression into other regions of Ukraine, but, according to Ivan Yakovina of “Novoye Vremya,” he does not at least at the present time have “the strength, the motive or the opportunity” to do so. here are six compelling reasons why this […]

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Putin Evokes Tolstoy 26 Years After Soviet Troops Pulled Out of Afghanistan

Soviet Era Afghan Soldiers with Flag

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – February 16, 2015) President Vladimir Putin marked the 26th anniversary of the Soviet Union’s withdrawal from Afghanistan Sunday, vindicating his country’s involvement in the Afghan War and praising novelist Leo Tolstoy’s moral teachings. “When years pass and more facts become known, we more clearly understand the reason why Soviet troops were sent to Afghanistan,” Putin […]

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Agreement in Minsk: Will the ceasefire in eastern Ukraine work this time?

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

(Russia Beyond the Headlines – rbth.ru – Alexei Timofeichev, RBTH – February 13, 2015) According to the agreement reached in Minsk on Feb. 12, the ceasefire in eastern Ukraine goes into effect at 00:00 on Feb. 15. However, Russian military experts believe that several factors may impede the full cease of military activity, key among which is the situation in […]

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Shelling of Ukrainian army position stops – General Staff

Map of Ukraine, Including Crimea, and Neighbors, Including Russia

KYIV. Feb 15 (Interfax) – Acting spokesman for the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces Vladyslav Seleznyov has announced that the shelling of army positions in Eastern Ukraine stopped as of 3 a.m. on Sunday. “The ceasefire in the zone of the antiterrorist operation is generally observed since midnight. Since that time members of illegal armed formations irregularly conducted […]

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Ukrainian troops reportedly encircled by pro-Russian rebels in crucial Donbas town ahead of peace talks

Ukraine Map and Flag

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – bne IntelliNews – February 10, 2015) Russian-backed rebel fighters in eastern Ukraine’s Donbas region are close to encircling a key town that their commanders are intent on taking ahead of further ceasefire talks in Belarus, reports said on February 10. The small town of Debaltseve, the most eastward point held by Ukrainian forces, is […]

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Business New Europe: NATO ramps up presence in Eastern Europe

NATO meeting file photo

(Business New Europe – bne.eu – bne IntelliNews – February 6, 2015) Nato has agreed to establish a new rapid reaction force, boost its troops in Poland and Romania, and establish six command and control centres in Central and Southeast Europe as part of the alliance’s response to the Russian aggression in Ukraine. According to Nato’s secretary general Jens Stoltenberg, […]

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PONARS Perspectives: U.S. Military Assistance to Ukraine

Ukraine Map and Flag

(PONARS Eurasia – ponarseurasia.org – February 5, 2015) PONARS Eurasia is a network of over 100 academics, mainly from North America and post-Soviet Eurasia, who advance new policy approaches to research and security in Russia and Eurasia. Eight former senior military and diplomatic officials have called for the United States to provide $1 billion a year in military assistance to Ukraine over […]

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Another Sign Moscow Preparing Massive Invasion of Ukraine – and Facing Problems Doing So

File Photo of Russian Military Conscripts Boarding Train with Gear

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, February 5, 2015) The Russian government has introduced draft legislation that would make it easier for Moscow to sign up professional soldiers and for commanders to force draftees to convert to that status and thus be available for dispatch to Ukraine, yet another indication Moscow is preparing for a massive invasion and […]

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NEWSWATCH: Russians present in Ukraine in specialist roles: U.S. envoy

Douglas Lute file photo

[“Russians present in Ukraine in specialist roles: U.S. envoy” – Reuters – February 4, 2015] Reuters reports on clarifications by U.S. ambassador to NATO Douglas Lute that Russian troops in eastern Ukraine are in a command role and are operating sophisticated military equipment, while additional Russia military interventions do not appear imminent. ‘Back in August, we saw a spike in direct Russian intervention […]

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NEWSWATCH: Pentagon 2008 study claims Putin has Asperger’s syndrome

Vladimir Putin

[“Pentagon 2008 study claims Putin has Asperger’s syndrome” – USA Today – Ray Locker – February 4, 2015] USA Today reports on a U.S. Department of Defense study from 2008, obtained through a Freedom of Information request, theorizing that Russian President Vladimir Putin is autistic, having the neurological condition Asperger’s Syndrome. A study from a Pentagon think tank theorizes … Putin has Asperger’s […]

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NEWSWATCH: Prospects for NATO-Russia relations: Keynote address by NATO Deputy Secretary General Ambassador Alexander Vershbow

Alexander Vershbow file photo

[“Prospects for NATO-Russia relations: Keynote address by NATO Deputy Secretary General Ambassador Alexander Vershbow at the 2015 Leangkollen Conference, Oslo” – Alexander Vershbow – NATO transcript – Feb. 2, 2015] In his keynote address at the 2015 Leangkollen Conference, Oslo, NATO Deputy Secretary General Ambassador Alexander Vershbow addressed the Ukraine conflict and challenges facing NATO-Russia relations. Vershbow holds that Russian aggression has undermined […]

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Interfax: Russian Defence Ministry again says it has no troops in Ukraine

File Photo of Russian Military Conscripts Boarding Train with Gear

(Interfax – Moscow, January 30, 2015) The Russian Defence Ministry has once again denied the claims of the Ukrainian military that Russian forces are fighting on the side of the militia. “It is difficult to imagine even one defence ministry in the world in which public statements are made on the principle of ‘every cock wants to crow’,” Russian Defence […]

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Interfax: Luhansk authorities ask Ukrainian “guerrillas” not to blow up coal trains

Ukraine Map and Flag

KYIV. Jan 23 (Interfax) – Head of the Luhansk region state administration Hennadiy Moskal has asked the so-called “guerrillas” who blew up a coal train at the Krasna Mohyla station not to stage acts of sabotage on the Kyiv-controlled part of the Luhansk region. “A lion’s share of electric power for populated localities on our territory is generated by the […]

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Putin Now has His Storm Troopers and Pogroms Will Surely Follow, Ganapolsky Says

Vladimir Putin

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, January 23, 2014) Putin’s Russia has crossed a Rubicon: it now has sanctioned the Anti-Maidan Movement, a domestic version of Hitler’s storm troopers, and thus created a monster that almost certainly will engage in pogroms against one group or another in the future, according to Moscow commentator Matvey Ganapolsky. Despite Putin’s ratings […]

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Moscow Times: Over Half of French Citizens Think Paris Should Deliver Mistral Warship to Russia

Mistral Class Ship

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – January 20, 2015) Over 60 percent of French citizens think their country should honor a 1.2 billion euro ($1.39 billion) contract with Russia for the stalled delivery of two French-built Mistral-class helicopter carriers, according to a poll published Tuesday. In contrast, 36 percent of French citizens support French President Francois Hollande’s decision to deliver the […]

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Interfax: Putin suggests Ukraine conflicting parties cease fire, pull back artillery guns larger than 100mm

Ukraine Map and Flag

(Interfax – January 19, 2015) The text of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s message to Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko was published on Sunday night. Kremlin press secretary Dmitry Peskov told Interfax about the message earlier. “The latest events in southeastern Ukraine – the resumed bombardments of populated areas in the regions of Donetsk and Lugansk – give us a deep sense […]

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RIA Novosti: Diplomat says Russia to react to NATO build-up in Europe “if necessary”

NATO meeting file photo

(RIA Novosti – January 13, 2015) Russia is carefully monitoring how NATO is reinforcing its military presence in Eastern Europe, and is ready to take action in response if necessary, Mikhail Ulyanov, director of the Russian Foreign Ministry’s Department of Security and Disarmament Issues, told RIA Novosti (part of the Russian state-owned International News Agency Rossiya Segodnya) on 13 January. […]

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What You Need to Know About Joining the Russian Army

File Photo of Russian Military Conscripts Boarding Train with Gear

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Matthew Bodner – January 13, 2015) Tried to join the French Foreign Legion and didn’t make the cut? Don’t fret – the Russian military has created its own force of foreign citizens to fight Moscow’s wars. The Russian Defense Ministry last month announced that foreigners could enlist in the Russian military, a move ostensibly aimed […]

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RIA Novosti: Rostislav Ishchenko, 2015: Year of a Fundamental Turnabout

Kremlin and Saint Basil's

(RIA Novosti – January 6, 2015) The world is entering 2015. People hope for better, but are preparing for the worst. It is hard to be optimists when the year is beginning to the salvoes of the incessant civil war in Ukraine, to Kiev’s threats to settle the problem of the Donbass and Crimea militarily before the end of 2015, […]

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Putin Signs New Military Doctrine: Core Elements Unchanged

File Photo of Russian Tanks in Military Parade

(Eurasia Daily Monitor: Volume 12, Issue 2 – Roger McDermott – Jamestown Foundation – jamestown.org – January 6, 2015) President Vladimir Putin has introduced a new Military Doctrine in the context of the Ukraine crisis, deteriorating relations with the United States, the European Union and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), as well as shifts within the international security environment. […]

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Interfax: Updated Russian military doctrine has no preemptive nuclear strike provision – source

Russia ICBM on Mobile Launcher

(Interfax – December 10, 2014) A new edition of the Russian military doctrine does not contain a preemptive nuclear strike provision but it clearly defines circumstances under which strategic nuclear forces can be used, a source involved in the drafting of the document told Interfax-AVN on Wednesday. “The updated version of the military doctrine will not have a provision regarding […]

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Former Russian CGS says war with NATO possible

File Photo of Russian Tanks in Military Parade

(Interfax – Moscow, December 1, 2014) The “cold war” between Russia and the West never ended, and under certain circumstances it may move into the “hot” phase, former Chief of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces Army Gen Yuriy Baluyevskiy believes. “The armed forces of the USA, of NATO in general, are “honed” today towards fighting against Russia, […]

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Moscow Ready to Use Internal Troops against Any Maidan-Like Activity in Russia, Interior Minister Says

Kremlin and Environs Aerial View

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, November 29, 2014) In words that are clearly intended to intimidate but that may have just the opposite effect by exposing official nervousness, Russian Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev says that Moscow is ready to use its internal troops against any Maidan-like activity in any part of the Russian Federation. The minister told […]

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Interfax: Donetsk separatists urge UN to send peacekeepers to eastern Ukraine

Ukraine Map and Flag

(Interfax – Moscow, November 25, 2014) The leadership of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic [DPR] has suggested that a mixed Russian-European peacekeeping contingent should be sent to eastern Ukraine. “We urge the United Nations to send a mixed peacekeeping contingent including Russian and European peacekeepers,” the deputy speaker of the supreme council of the DPR, Denys Pushylin [Denis Pushilin], told […]

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Poll: Most Russians Predict More War in Ukraine, But Oppose Russian Intervention

Ukraine Map and Flag

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – November 26, 2014) Most Russians believe that the current cease-fire in Ukraine will eventually give way to renewed military action, a poll by the independent Levada Center showed Tuesday. The poll’s publication on Tuesday came as shelling in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk killed at least two people and injured at least seven others, […]

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Russia and Breakaway Georgian Region to Create Joint Military

Georgia Beach in Abkhazia Region

(Moscow Times – themoscowtimes.com – Alexey Eremenko – November 22, 2014) Russia will form a joint army with Georgia’s breakaway province of Abkhazia under a new cooperation pact that one expert said is part of the continuing fallout from the Ukraine crisis. The treaty was inked Monday in Sochi by Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Abkhaz counterpart Raul Khadzhimba. […]

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NEWSLINK: Russia, China plan war games, arms sales. Could alliance be in the cards?

China Map

[“Russia, China plan war games, arms sales. Could alliance be in the cards? With Russia alienated by the West and China eager to buy high-end weaponry, a joint military pact – though still a long way off – looks increasingly seductive to both” – Christian Science Monitor – Fred Weir – Nov. 21, 2014] The Christian Science Monitor reports on […]

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Protecting the Motherland: Russia’s Counter-Color Revolution Military Doctrine

File Photo of Russian Military Conscripts Boarding Train with Gear

(Eurasia Daily Monitor: Volume 11, Issue 206 – Jamestown Foundation – jamestown.org – Roger McDermott – November 18, 2014) President Vladimir Putin’s order to revise Russia’s 2010 Military Doctrine by the end of this year prompted speculation in the Russian media and raised varying opinions about the revision process’s possible motives and its timing. It appears, according to defense specialists […]

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Kremlin Divided Only on When to Begin Full-Scale War with Ukraine, Sheremet Says

Kremlin and Environs Aerial View

(Window on Eurasia – Paul Goble – Staunton, November 19, 2014) There are “no influential forces in the Kremlin now” calling for peace in Ukraine or with Russia’s other neighbors, independent Belarusian journalist Pavel Sheremet says. There are only various groups calling for war and differing only on when, where and how to carry out a full-scale war with Ukraine. […]

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STATEMENT BY SENATORS JOHN MCCAIN AND LINDSEY GRAHAM ON NEED TO SUPPORT UKRAINE IN FACE OF RENEWED RUSSIAN AGGRESSION

File Photo of U.S. Capitol in Bright Sunlight

(mccain.senate.gov – Washington, D.C., November 18, 2014) U.S. Senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) today released the following statement urging the Obama Administration and the European Union to provide the support Ukrainian leaders have long sought in the face of renewed Russian aggression: “President Putin’s renewed aggression in Ukraine demands more than additional empty rhetoric and threats of […]

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Interfax: There is no, has never been Russian military presence in southeastern Ukraine – Russian Foreign Ministry

Russian Foreign Ministry Building Tower file photo

MOSCOW. Nov 13 (Interfax) – The Russian Foreign Ministry has denied the information on Russian military presence in southeastern Ukraine and movements of Russian troops over the Russian-Ukrainian border. “I am telling you totally frankly and officially that there are no military movements across the [Russian-Ukrainian] border, let alone a Russian military presence in southeastern Ukraine,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman […]

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Re: Churchill and War with USSR

Winston Churchill, Franklin Roosevelt, Joseph Stalin and Crowd of Military Officers

Subject: Churchill and War with USSR Date: Mon, 10 Nov 2014 From: Jake Kipp <jacobkipp@cs.com> In May 1945 before he knew about the atomic bomb, Churchill asked the British General Staff under Field Marshal Alan Brooke to do a study of a possible war between attacking British, US, German, and Polish forces against the USSR with a start date of […]

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Two Battalions of Chechens Now Fighting the Russians in Ukraine

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

(Eurasia Daily Monitor: Volume 11, Issue 199 – Mairbek Vatchagaev – Jamestown Foundation – jamestown.org – November 7, 2014) Reading the Ukrainian media earlier this year gave one the impression that Ukraine was fighting not Russia, but Chechnya (vesti.ru, May 28). Few doubted that Chechens were fighting on the Russian side in eastern Ukraine, but their numbers were greatly exaggerated. […]

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Russia Reenacts WWII March After Putin Defends Nazi Pact

File Photo of Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler Riding in Convertible

(Bloomberg – bloomberg.com – Henry Meyer – November 7, 2014) Russian troops marched in Red Square to commemorate a World War II parade held under the noses of German invaders in 1941 two days after President Vladimir Putin defended a 1939 non-aggression pact with Hitler. Six thousand soldiers and cadets accompanied by World War II-era warplanes and other weaponry today […]

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RIA Novosti: Allegations of Russian Troops Advancing Toward Ukrainian Border Unfounded: Ministry

Map of Commonwealth of Independent States, European Portion

MOSCOW, November 7 (RIA Novosti) – Allegations voiced by Canadian Foreign Minister John Baird and a number of representatives from the United States and NATO about Russian troops supposedly moving toward the country’s border with Ukraine have no grounds and are based on rumors, a Russian Defense Ministry spokesman said Friday. “These announcements were made citing some ‘reports’ without any […]

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