Author Topic: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка  (Read 34446 times)

TheDrake

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #400 on: March 25, 2022, 06:02:27 PM »
How do they spin quitting in the state media? Put up a mission accomplished banner? Throw a parade for the troops who didn't die? I was going to say undead troops, but you know.

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #401 on: March 25, 2022, 06:02:51 PM »
Pooter is moving the goalposts apparently.  Saying victory is liberating Donbass, instead of, you know, trying to topple the whole government.  Giving up the Keev front in the north and northwest.  Basically he's saying he's keeping the Russian troops up there as a decoy to occupy the Ukrainians while he refocuses on the Donbass.  Sucks to be Russian. 

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #402 on: March 25, 2022, 06:06:00 PM »
How do they spin quitting in the state media? Put up a mission accomplished banner? Throw a parade for the troops who didn't die? I was going to say undead troops, but you know.

No idea.  Quitting itself seems unlikely.  But stranger things have happened. At the end of the day, Pooter can probably claim anything he wants in state media as long as he has an iron grip on whatever security forces he's using inside Russia, and maintains a certain degree of popularity, which I am uncertain has been shifted greatly among rural uneducated Russians. 

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #403 on: March 25, 2022, 07:06:07 PM »
So, reports are that Kherson has been retaken.  Which would mean the reports of the counterattacks coming out of Mykolaiyv were true.  Which is kind of astounding given the reports that Kherson was being held by the 7th Guards Mountain Air Assault Division, plus elements of naval infantry and the 20th Guards Motor Rifle Division was to the north.  I guess the Russians can't even put up a defense as well as the Ukrainians, or they're simply worn down and exhausted.  Now, the opportunity presents itself to cut accross Kherson Oblast to the east and take back Melitopol and Berdyans'k.  Or they could head south and threaten Sevastopol.  Either way could be a way to take pressure off of Mariupol. 

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #404 on: March 25, 2022, 07:21:10 PM »

He is the older brother of Wladimir Klitschko, another world heavyweight boxer, I think not as successful, who's main accomplishment seems to have been impregnating Hayden Panettiere.

For a quick segway, back on the home front, Hayden Panettiere involved in a bar fight alongside ex Brian Hickerson, who is on probation for corporal injury of a cohabitant and intimidating a witness (Panettiere) with other patrons who were criticized for leaving a poor tip.

Meanwhile, Wladimir has been a constant presence at the side of his brother during his appearances with the media in Kyiv. 

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #405 on: March 25, 2022, 07:29:14 PM »
The Ferengis are insisting that Capitalism is the solution to winning the war in Ukraine, by simply offering Russian soldiers more and more $$$ and amnesty to defect with their equipment, despite the fact that this offer has already been in place and I've only heard of one single Russian tanker taking the Ukrainians up on the offer, after the rest of his unit was killed and he was abandoned by the rest of his crew. 

I think there is a difference between actual capitalists, who make their money often because they understand human behavior, and capitalist cheerleaders, who just understand that capitalism is the solution to everything and don't understand human behavior at all.  Homo Economicus. "Why would anyone not act in their own interests"? 

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #406 on: March 25, 2022, 07:35:16 PM »
Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu reportedly had a heart attack, explaining his recent disappearance over the last 10-11 days.  According to Anton Gerashchenko, adviser to the head of Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine. 

Sure.  His heart was probably attacked by a 9mm Wolf piece of lead poison. 

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #407 on: March 25, 2022, 08:43:11 PM »
Report that Ukrainian Defense Ministry officials have stated that they have begun to see Chemical/Biological weapons antidote kits issued to Russian forces across Ukraine. 

If true, this would be a major warning sign of a possibly chemical attack in Ukraine, most likely using Sarin, and most likely in heavily concentrated urban areas presenting stiff defense and interfering with Russian advances.  The most likely point would by the city of Sumy, which the Russians have accused of having a chemical/biological weapons lab. 

The purpose of this escalation would be similar to nuclear escalation detailed in the Armageddon thread.  Force NATO to pressure Ukraine to accept a cease fire giving Russia the Donbass, allowing Russia to escape with a victory.  It would be safer than a tac nuke escalation since NATO doesn't have chemical weapons to respond with.  But I'm unconvinced that this would be the response by NATO.  It's more likely that NATO finally enters the war conventionally rather than force Ukraine to give up the Donbass.  Public pressure is already building and will only continue to grow in the US and Europe.  Initial fears of nuclear Armageddon will dissipate due to the sunshine of reality and realpolitik. 

Of course, NATO entry to the war conventionally would indeed increase the risk of a nuclear escalation by Russia.  Not Armageddon, but probably something more like I laid down in the other Armageddon thread.  Limited tactical nuclear use to raise the risk of strategic release (Armageddon) to force NATO to negotiate and give Russia the Donbass.  Either way, the only weapon Russia has left is fear and intimidation.  They don't want Armageddon.  They just want NATO and the US to fear it enough to give them what they want. 

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #408 on: March 25, 2022, 08:53:55 PM »
I'd pay good money for the dude here who could necro the thread with that krot who though the Russian T-72 upgrades made it the bee's knees. 

I want to dance on his corpse. 

TheDrake

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #409 on: March 26, 2022, 12:38:30 AM »
Quote
For a quick segway

I really loathe you for this.

kidv

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #410 on: March 26, 2022, 01:53:27 PM »

The mayor of Keev is Vitali Klitschko.  He's a 50 year old former world heavyweight boxer/champion.  Seems to have had a pretty successful career. 

He is the older brother of Wladimir Klitschko, another world heavyweight boxer, I think not as successful, who's main accomplishment seems to have been impregnating Hayden Panettiere.


"Wladimir Wladimirowitsch Klitschko[a] . . . is a Ukrainian former professional boxer who competed from 1996 to 2017. He held the world heavyweight championship twice, including the unified WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, and Ring magazine titles. A strategic and intelligent boxer, Klitschko is considered to be one of the best heavyweight champions of all time. . . .

As an amateur, Klitschko represented Ukraine at the 1996 Olympics, winning a gold medal in the super-heavyweight division.  . . .

 In September 2015, Klitschko was ranked as the world's best active boxer, pound for pound, by BoxRec. . .

During Klitschko's reign as world heavyweight champion, his fights regularly generated a global television audience of 300–500 million viewers. Klitschko holds records for the longest cumulative heavyweight title reign of all time, with 4,382 days as world heavyweight champion, and most fighters beaten for the world heavyweight championship, at 23. He also holds records for the most wins and title defenses of the unified championship in professional boxing history. . . . Klitschko was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame Class of 2021, having been elected in his first year of eligibility. . . .


Both Wladimir and Vitali hold PhDs in sports science . . ."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wladimir_Klitschko


Get the joke, but don't dis Wladimir's accomplishments.  The brothers are jointly impressive.

[Also, this may severely misapprehend the relative fame of Wladimir Klitschko and Hayden Panettiere.]

[apologies if this is sarcastic understatement, but in the present circumstances I wouldn't want anyone to have a limited impression of either of the Klitschko brothers]

TheDeamon

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #411 on: March 26, 2022, 02:23:22 PM »
Well duh. But to be fair NATO has always been a bipolar institution: if the U.S. wants it dictates what 'NATO' policy is, and when it wants to kick the can it says that Europe needs to make a decision. Nothing thus far has ever stopped the U.S. acting unilaterally when it felt like it. So as you say, it's a game of political football, not a question about requiring anyone to agree on anything. If the U.S. decided Putin had done something unacceptable with a WMD, it would just be a question of selling their response to Europe; permission would not be required.

Not quite?

Basically every NATO operation in Yugoslavia was the EU dragging a disinterested and reluctant Bill Clinton around. "We called the shots" only in the sense they were operationally incapable/unwilling to risk it without US support.

Bush Admin and response to 9/11 was American response and American led. The 2003 invasion of Iraq wasn't NATO although a lot of NATO was present.

Fast forward to the Obama Admin where NATO is "feeling their oats" again and we get France, Italy, and to a lesser extent the UK getting a disinterested and reluctant Barak Obama to agree with what they want to do, because again, they were operationally incapable/unwilling to try going into Libya without the US Military being there to lead the charge.

My understanding of things right now is that NATO is having to work overtime to keep their members in Eastern Europe from charging into Ukraine to render assistance on their own.

And Russian use of WMD's on NATO's doorstep without a strong response from NATO(or internally within Russia) sends a clarion call throughout the globe that makes WMD's come a far more widespread problem than they are right now. Concerns about nuclear Armageddon right now not withstanding.

Basically doing nothing at that point creates a near certainty that we will encounter it in the remaining lifetime of many adults living today.

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #412 on: March 26, 2022, 03:35:45 PM »
[apologies if this is sarcastic understatement, but in the present circumstances I wouldn't want anyone to have a limited impression of either of the Klitschko brothers]

Eh.  No apologies needed. I believe that I stressed that Wladimir's career as a fighter may not have been as impressive as Vitali's, which I believe is still true.  And honestly, I believe that impregnating Hayden Panettiere would be the main life accomplishment of any man who had 1 & 1/2 feet and 130 lbs on her.  I honestly feel that this is impressive.  Like, if there were a medal for it, it would go above Silver Star but below DSC.  So, congrats Wladi. 

TheDeamon

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #413 on: March 26, 2022, 04:24:50 PM »
And honestly, I believe that impregnating Hayden Panettiere would be the main life accomplishment of any man who had 1 & 1/2 feet and 130 lbs on her.  I honestly feel that this is impressive.  Like, if there were a medal for it, it would go above Silver Star but below DSC.  So, congrats Wladi.

Not that complicated, she gets to be on top. A few other positioning options would easily work as well. Heck, "missionary" would do the job as that position has no "top."  ;)

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #414 on: March 26, 2022, 04:48:45 PM »
Hey, man.  We're supposed to be keeping it PG in here.  Or American PG.  Cussing and violence but no Es-Ee-Ex. 

Keep talking this way and you'll bring back the Furrys. 

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #415 on: March 26, 2022, 07:45:54 PM »
So much stuff today it's hard to keep track of it all.  And it's not even a big news day. 

Most of the chatter seems to be about Biden in Poland.  Made a big speech in Warsaw.  I havn't listened to it yet, but I heard it was alright to good.  I did hear that he mentioned regime change in Russia at the end of the speech and that half the Twitterati went nuts saying it was his "Reagan Tear Down This Wall Moment", and the other half went nuts going "Danger Danger Danger".  Whitehouse then walked it back, making everyone look like cac.  Once again the danger of having Grandpa President go off script.  I need to listen to the speech myself.

Zelenskyy made a speech to the EU.  He basically called out each country separately.  But he saved his best call out for Hungary's Victor Orban.  LOL.  It was a doozey.  I'd recommend watching this speech if you had to watch just one.  Zelenskyy is the one making the most moves and is at the center of the matter.  I can't find a translated video in full on youtube, but I did manage to find an English transcript. 

https://www.president.gov.ua/en/news/promova-prezidenta-ukrayini-volodimira-zelenskogo-na-zasidan-73809

It doesn't have the same thrust as watching Zelenskyy deliver it, even with subtitles though. 

Ukrainian positions in the east that have been under constant attack from artillery for weeks now are beginning to show strain.  Despite everything that has been going their way, the war is not over, and even though I believe the odds now favor Ukraine, I'd still put it only at 60-40 Ukraine.  Russia can still grind away week by week until they run out of ammo.  These Russian forces in the Donbass are the only ones that didn't venture far into Ukraine and have been able to maintain their supply lines, unlike the forces that advanced on Kiev from the north and the northeast, and the Russian forces that came up from Crimea.  That's why Russia has been switching their efforts to there. 

Zelenskyy complains he needs more weapons, planes, and tanks, to take the fight to the east.  Asks who is running NATO.  Putin through intimidation? 

More missiles fired at Lviv.  Some people made a big deal about it because Grandpa President was only 70 MILES AWAY!!!  Bllaglkaljgalkgalkjhgfd!  People....

President of the EU Commission still pushing for renewables instead of just sucking on that delicious nuclear teat sitting right there.  Guess change can only go so far. 

A rather embarrassing story in Task & Purpose on Americans in the Ukrainian Legion of International Volunteers basically lasting a week or so and quitting when they have to pick up the first corpse.  Task & Purpose specializes in finding embarassing stuff about the US military and US veterans and making the institutions look bad.  Think of them as the guys that could never get their stuff published in Army Times or Stars and Stripes.  But they don't make stuff up.  They just happen to be fixated a bit too much on it to my liking and they have a definitive bias that "everyone is stupid except me" attitude.  It might be up some of y'alls alley. 

https://taskandpurpose.com/news/ukraine-russia-war-army-veteran-volunteer/


Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #416 on: March 26, 2022, 08:41:04 PM »
Listening to Grandpa Presidents speech now. 

Could be a great one.  Important one for his Presidency.  A Kennedy opportunity. 

He's bringing some fire. He's bringing a little goofy grandpa charm.  He's stumbling a little as usual. 

I don't know why he's bringing up 1956 Hungary.  Eastern Europe may be a bit sore at the US about that.  Especially after telling the people to "steel themselves" for a long hard battle against Russia.  This seems to suggest that "hey, you might get conquered by Russia, since we won't actually go to war with them over you, but you'll win eventually.  After 50 years."

"The ruble reduced to rubble" was good enough to get some applause in the middle, and throw Grandpa to ad lib for one second. 

I'm glad that he's drawing a hard line on defense of NATO, talking about "sacred obligations", but I've discussed the hollow legalistic problems with the approach before, and that the same problems with fighting for Ukraine would apply to fighting Russians in Estonia or Poland.  If Russians invaded Poland, would American troops not shoot at them?  Because "World War Three!!!!!!!".  RNGesus, some of the arguments have just been so stupid to me.  I get that it is about deterrence, but that deterrence depends on the ability of US and NATO troops to kill Russians and not fear nuclear war, which seems to have gripped so many in Europe and the United States.  Pooter is going to challenge it if he gets the opportunity.  Anyways, this is the most fire and determination I've seen from Grandpa.  If you're selling deterrence you have to be believable and he's doing his utmost best. 

Finally gets to some American demands
1. Pooter must end the war (not very specific, but it's a start)
2. Europe needs to end dependence on Russian gas
3. Clean renewable energy again (the fetish is strong in these ones)
4. NATO democracies must stand together (vague)

Ending with some fire. 

Then he says Pooter can't stay in power, lol, which got him into trouble apparently.  I don't know why.  Everybody is thinking it.  Others have pretty much said it. 

Anyways, I give it an 8 out of 10.  It's probably as good as Grandpa is ever going to get.  Let's face it, he's not a Reagan or Kennedy.  I think a thread on ranking Presidents as orators would be fun. 




NobleHunter

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #417 on: March 26, 2022, 09:17:15 PM »
Reports are that the Russian tank reserve is mostly useless due to key components being sold off. It's also said that 60% of missile fires are failing. The Russians situation looks worse and worse.

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #418 on: March 27, 2022, 09:22:34 AM »
It's also said that 60% of missile fires are failing. The Russians situation looks worse and worse.

I had heard something similar but it went that 60% of their surface to surface missiles, cruise and ballistic, had MISSED rather than failed.  Meaning they still worked but just were not very accurate.  I would not be surprised if they had some missile failures as well.  Missiles are very high maintenance items. 


Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #419 on: March 27, 2022, 11:56:49 AM »
Zelenskyy getting irate and asking again for more weapons.  This time tanks and planes.  Not just MiGs, but F-16s and F-15s.  I don't know who he has that he thinks can fly them, but apparently he has great faith in his pilots.  I have admitted that I don't understand the NATO reasoning behind the blockage of the MiG transfers, but if it like Zelenskyy says and it is being driven by fear of Pooter, then I don't think it makes sense.  I don't know how it makes sense to send F-15s or M-1s to Ukraine either, but sure, have a couple.  Let's see if you can operate them.  I dunno, maybe they got guys that play a lot of DCS World over there. 

I mean, 19K AIT takes 22 weeks.  That doesn't count the time to train TCs and PSs and PLs.  But *censored*it.  Santa brings you these mythical weapons to fight the Ice Bitch of Moscow. 

Wants S-300 reloads from Slovakia.  Everything points to Ukraine running low on all these critical weapons systems they have been relying on to maintain what they have. 


Report in the NYT that Ukrainian General Staff says the Russians are not just holding their ground NW of Keev anymore, but are actively retreating through Chernobyl and Pripyat back to Belarus.  A sad lost opportunity if this is true, to have kept up the counter attacks and encircle and trap the 35th and 36th CAAs.  That would have been glory to Ukraine.  Retreating across Belarus makes them save and they can regroup and rearm and threaten to attack again, meaning Ukraine has to keep more forces in Keev to protect against such an attack.  Forces they need to counter attack with and reinforce with in the east. 


It's sad to me where India has fallen on this war.  You would think that being a democracy surrounded by autocracies would lead to some feelings of empathy and solidarity.  Apparently not. 


LOL.  Russian MP Sergei Savostyanov threatens Russian offensives against Poland, the Baltics, and Kazakhstan as part of a demilitarization and denazification campaign.  Good luck with 75% of your Army getting chewed up. 

Fenring

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #420 on: March 27, 2022, 12:25:23 PM »
Not just MiGs, but F-16s and F-15s.  I don't know who he has that he thinks can fly them, but apparently he has great faith in his pilots.

Maybe this is a silly question but...seriously, how hard can it be to fly an aircraft if you're an experienced fighter pilot? I mean there must be some line between Anakin "wheee!" no-skill needed and "how do you fly this thing??!!!"

msquared

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #421 on: March 27, 2022, 01:05:17 PM »
I really have no idea how much getting familiar with the limits of the plane most of training is.  I mean how do you know how much you can push a plane unless you have been in it at least some?  I mean when you are in dog fights for you life I assume you are pushing the plane and yourself to your and the planes limits. 

Also are the planes controls in English or Ukranian?  I would assume that might have some input?

TheDrake

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #422 on: March 27, 2022, 02:14:53 PM »
Well in "independence day" we learned that just about any pilot can hop in any fighter jet and go to work

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #423 on: March 27, 2022, 02:34:40 PM »
Maybe this is a silly question but...seriously, how hard can it be to fly an aircraft if you're an experienced fighter pilot? I mean there must be some line between Anakin "wheee!" no-skill needed and "how do you fly this thing??!!!"

This is basically the key question rather than being silly. 

According to an article in Air Force Magazine, The Air Dominance School "B Course" for the F-15 takes 115 days.  This is for newly minted pilots.  The transition course takes shorter, but it doesn't say exactly how long. 

I mean, If I had to guess, I'd say that a transition course would be roughly 50 days.  Given the way fighter pilots live, I imagine it could be shortened to 25-30 days if necessary, by extending working hours and cutting out weekends and binge drinking.  But to shorten the course that way you would have to be somewhere with the right facilities with plenty of simulators etc.  That probably means Tyndall AFB would be the only place to do this for F-15s, and Luke AFB for the F-16.  Then you have to basically kick whatever course you have already planned down the road, and fit in 12-20 Ukrainian fighter jocks. 

I think it's possible given the amount of time the war can drag on, though a part of me wants to say that it can only last another 2-4 weeks before somebody hits exhaustion on ammo or morale.  The new Russian way of war is burning up lots of ammo.  And not small bullets either.  Big rockets and big artillery shells.  That *censored* is heavy and goes boom.  You need lots of trucks to move that stuff. 

But could Ukraine do without 12 to 20 of it's best pilots right now?  Or are they plane-less?  Does Zelenskyy or his pilots really believe they can just jump into an F-15, get a familiarization ride, and zoom take off on combat missions? 

I mean, it's not just the pilots either.  You have to train them on the weapons.  You have to train the mechanics.  The armorers.  The fuelers.  All that *censored* takes time. 

Look, man.  Send four of your best pilots over and we'll see what they can do.  That's what I would say.  But if we won't let them have MiG 29s I doubt we'll let them have F-15s. 

This could all just be over in a week if NATO or the US just enters the air war.  I'm tired of the whole thing.  By the end of the week we'll be at peace or we'll be radioactive farts. 

Fenring

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #424 on: March 27, 2022, 06:16:52 PM »
I can't assess any of that, Grant, but let's at least assume that graduating on a fighter in the U.S. has more implications that merely being able to handle the aircraft. There are safety regulations, insurance (CYA?) issues, procedure, maintenance, warning signs to do with defect/malfunction, design limits, and of course the actual rigor of testing one's own mettle. Let's assume these Ukrainian pilots are already hardened by training so there's no issue for their own personal chops. And let's say Ukraine doesn't care about CYA American lawsuit protection. And let's even say they don't care so much about whether you can land the aircraft in XYZ scenario with various types of landing apparatus (on a carrier, on land, with/without landing strip). In fact let's even go further and assume they are in an existential crisis and don't even care that much about the landing at all! How hard could it actually be to get one of these things airborne, learn the controls, and use your previous training for spatial awareness, tactical, etc? Not saying it should be overnight, but I mean what would really be the bare minimum. I have a hard time believing it's 25-30 days, even skimping on weekends/binging. We're talking about 'get the birds up in the air and defend us' level of preparation. Could there realistically be more controls than a sophisticated flight sim or PC game? How long does it take gamers to learn to play at a decent level? Going forward that might not actually be a ridiculous standard for sheer technical skill. The other things (safety, maintenance, etc) might always require long procedure for long-term stability, sure.

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #425 on: March 27, 2022, 07:35:15 PM »
1. Safety Regulations:  Already covered in basic pilot training and not a part of familiarization
2. Insurance:  Same as #1, plus regionally based.  Ukrainian pilots already are trained on Ukrainian insurance.
3. Procedure: Wut procedure? Like taking off?  See below
4. Maintenance:  Not the pilots job but you can't skip that unless you want your jet falling out of the sky because of an engine failure.
5. Warning Signs:  See below
6. Design limits:  See below
7. Familiarization flights:  See below
8. Carrier landing:  F-15s and F-16s are not carrier capable. 
9. Unimproved air strip landing: The F-16 I believe is capable, and learning how to do it may be critical given the situation.
10. Not learning how to land due to existential crisis:  Sounds like a bad way to run an airforce. Take the wheel RNGesus.
11.  How long does it take a gamer?  About 10-20 hours for familiarization and probably 100-200 hours for real proficiency, depending on the plane.  I mean, there are only so many things you can do with an A-10, but it has lots of switches.  There less switches on an F-15, but a lot more things you can do and a lot more things you need to look out for. 

 I'm not a fighter pilot.  But I do understand some of the concepts behind military training. 

First, you have a classroom period where you understand all the technical crap about your plane.  Like, lift generation and turning radius, and just about every damn thing you can imagine.  Just general info.  I bet that can take a week at least.  I bet you can cut some stuff out but this is the stuff that you base everything else off of.  It gives you a technical understanding of the aircraft. Just my opinion, but I think I pilot needs that stuff. 

Second you have to have classroom instruction on all the components.  The canopy. Everything in the cockpit. The HUD.  The radio. The radar. The ejector seat. The engine startup sequence.  The engine itself.  The emergency restart process.  What to do in a stall.  What to do in this kind of stall.  The fuel system.  What 500 buttons do.  What buttons to push when your heart is going 200bpm and you are pulling 9gs and your engine flames out and you slip into a flat spin.  And you have to memorize this *censored* to the point it it becomes second nature.  I bet that can take another 2 weeks right there. 

Then you need classroom instruction on the weapons systems.  How to employ them.  What are their operational envelopes.  It's not like a rifle.  Even then the Army will spend a week on BRM.  Missiles are highly complex weapons dealing with all kinds of crazy variables.  Your speed.  The bogy's speed. Angle of attack.  Closing angle.  Missile thrust.  I bet that takes a week in a classroom.

Then you need basic tactical employment of your aircraft against general enemies.  New planes and new weapons means new abilities which means they have to learn new ways of flying.  I bet that can take a week but I bet they could cut that down to two days given their experience and that they'll do it their way anyways. 

Then you're ready to go into a simulator and demonstrate what you know.  That can take a week because you don't have a simulator for everyone at once and you don't have a single instructor for everyone at once.  You have to demonstrate what you have learned in the classroom and then put it into effect and be critiqued until they get it right.  Everything.  Takeoff.  Landing.  Manuever at high speed at different altitudes.  Emergency procedures.  All of it.  That can take a week. 

Then you get up into a fighter plane to solo demonstrate you can do it.  On your own.  Everything.  Takeoff.  Landing.  Manuever at high speed.  Emergency procedures.  How to operate absolutely everything in the plane. While your instructor flies on your wing.  That can take two weeks unless you have so many instructors you can get through it in maybe a week in a half?  Now you're putting your instructors in danger by flying multiple sorties a day every day no weekends. 

I count 8 weeks up there.  I'm basically pulling it out of my ass but I bet it's a pretty educated guess.  That's 56 days.  That's a probably better guess than 25-30 days.  It's half the time given for the brand new pilots in the USAF. 

That still doesn't cover the training you need for your ground crews. 

It takes time, but from the Ukrainian point of view, the sooner they get started the better.  The way they are looking at it and the way things seem to be going, they could probably do a lot of damage with 12 F-15s or F-16s.  I understand that their MiG 29s and Su-27s are all real old models with *censored*ty radars that give the Russians huge advantages in air to air combat with being able to have missiles that do not require lock be maintained by the shooting aircraft. 

I think it's all academic anyhow until the US or NATO can get over the "give them jets" hump. 

Fenring

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #426 on: March 27, 2022, 08:32:48 PM »
Not to second-guess your figures, cause what do I know, but if that's a standard minimum time for an average classroom, don't you think it could be, I dunno, cut in half if they select only their top 10-12 most brilliant or quick-learning pilots? Even elite classrooms are slow for the best of the best. I'm just suggesting that 'no one here can learn to fly these things' doesn't sound like a great reason not to try to acquire aircraft of this sort.

LetterRip

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #427 on: March 27, 2022, 09:18:31 PM »
Ground crew and maintenance seem the far harder problem.  I think getting a pilot up to speed is relatively trivial - but US craft tend to have absurd maintenance requirements.

TheDeamon

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #428 on: March 27, 2022, 10:50:11 PM »
I really have no idea how much getting familiar with the limits of the plane most of training is.  I mean how do you know how much you can push a plane unless you have been in it at least some?  I mean when you are in dog fights for you life I assume you are pushing the plane and yourself to your and the planes limits. 

Also are the planes controls in English or Ukranian?  I would assume that might have some input?

Honestly, the pilots are the simpler part of things, and I think that could possibly be turned around in "a couple of months" if the pilot is already experienced in fighters, or at least, experienced in American made fighters... Which the Ukranians won't be. Even then, their "skill" with the plane would be pretty low. Decent enough they shouldn't kill themselves with it in normal (peace time) operating conditions, but I wouldn't be so certain about trying to take on hostile fighters.

The real problem would be in regard to the ground crew and doing maintenance on the planes.

A more realistic option is to just feed them a bunch of predator drones which can be used as a disposable asset, because that's what the American Fighters would end up being otherwise.

Otherwise, get them more surface to air missile batteries to keep the Russians out of their airspace. Honestly the "best" option for giving them American anti-air capabilities likely looks a lot more like getting them equipped with Patriot Missile Batteries, and dealing with training the personnel to operate and maintain those. Although the Maintenance side of that is going to have a lengthy training pipeline too, I'm sure.

S-300/S-400 batteries from other nations would have a much faster turn-around, and less risk of "the good stuff" from the Patriot Batteries finding its way into Russia during/after the war.

TheDeamon

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #429 on: March 27, 2022, 10:58:48 PM »
And let's even say they don't care so much about whether you can land the aircraft in XYZ scenario with various types of landing apparatus (on a carrier, on land, with/without landing strip). In fact let's even go further and assume they are in an existential crisis and don't even care that much about the landing at all! How hard could it actually be to get one of these things airborne, learn the controls, and use your previous training for spatial awareness, tactical, etc? Not saying it should be overnight, but I mean what would really be the bare minimum. I have a hard time believing it's 25-30 days, even skimping on weekends/binging. We're talking about 'get the birds up in the air and defend us' level of preparation. Could there realistically be more controls than a sophisticated flight sim or PC game? How long does it take gamers to learn to play at a decent level? Going forward that might not actually be a ridiculous standard for sheer technical skill. The other things (safety, maintenance, etc) might always require long procedure for long-term stability, sure.

I kind of suspect that was their plan with the Polish Migs, get them in the air, carry out attacks against the Russian air defense batteries, and the moment the Russians shoot back and go bingo on their own weapons, have the pilot bail out.

That's an obscenely expensive way to fight a war. Russia's use of Hypersonic Missiles against buildings seems downright frugal in comparison.

1.5 million dollar Hypersonic Missile, or $80+ million dollar fighter jet getting to experience intentional "one time use" before it even leaves the ground?

Yes, "the west" may be effectively bankrolling the war for Ukraine right now, but there is a limit on just how much money they're going to be willing to just "throw away" when there are other options that provide for a lot more "bang," for a lot less money. It just requires more time, and more manpower.

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #430 on: March 27, 2022, 11:19:40 PM »
Not to second-guess your figures, cause what do I know, but if that's a standard minimum time for an average classroom, don't you think it could be, I dunno, cut in half if they select only their top 10-12 most brilliant or quick-learning pilots? Even elite classrooms are slow for the best of the best. I'm just suggesting that 'no one here can learn to fly these things' doesn't sound like a great reason not to try to acquire aircraft of this sort.

My understanding is that all fighter pilots are pretty sharp.  Like: here is the procedure for engine restart, I'll go over it for 15 minutes.  It consists of 10 steps.  Write it down.  Tonight study it for 10 minutes.  You will have a test on it tomorrow.  You must pass.  Next: procedure for takeoff.  50 steps.  Write it down.  Study it for 30 minutes tonight.  Test on it tomorrow.  You must get every step correct.  This goes on all day, 12 hours.  Study another 6 hours.  Sleep for 6 hours.  Back in class.

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #431 on: March 27, 2022, 11:34:55 PM »
A more realistic option is to just feed them a bunch of predator drones which can be used as a disposable asset, because that's what the American Fighters would end up being otherwise.

Yes.  Give them Reapers.  But the problem is they want air to air capabilities which UAVs just don't have yet.  They're working on it, but not there yet.  Too threatening to fighter jocks. 

Quote
Otherwise, get them more surface to air missile batteries to keep the Russians out of their airspace. Honestly the "best" option for giving them American anti-air capabilities likely looks a lot more like getting them equipped with Patriot Missile Batteries, and dealing with training the personnel to operate and maintain those. Although the Maintenance side of that is going to have a lengthy training pipeline too, I'm sure.

It honestly depends on just how supportive the US wants to be.  Handling basic vehicle, electronic, and missile loading should be kinda easy.  It's an Army system after all.  If the US just allows empty Patriot launchers to be returned to Poland for a new one, it simplifies things, having the US do half of the maintenance.  But that would probably be politically untenable for some.  Can't upset the Russians and all.  The hardest part of learning the Patriot probably isn't maintenance, but handling the radar tracking system, the software, and the radar itself.  But again, I'm guessing. 
Basically, you're only going to train your Patriot missile battery operators, rather than the support personnel like the mechanics and missileers.  Level 1 maintenance only.  Not level 2 or level 3.

Quote
Army Maintenance Level History
Since World War II, the current Army Maintenance Level system has been used. There are 4 Army Maintenance Levels. They are:

Unit Level: In this level, the repair is performed and returned immediately to the user.

Direct Support: At this level, the majority of repair is returned to the user, but a small percentage is returned to supply.

General Support: This level of maintenance primarily repairs and returns to supply, with a small percentage going to the user.

Depot: At this level, the repair is made and the item returned to supply.

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #432 on: March 28, 2022, 12:21:25 AM »
Update Day 32

Overview:  Ukrainian counterattacks continue around northwest Keev, Sumy, Kharkiv, and Izium.  Russians are pressing on in the Donbass and Mariupol. 

Russians actually have a brigade or so of airborne and mechanized troops near Brest, on the border of Poland.  Just there to make people nervous I suspect. 

The hardest part about all this is not knowing exactly what kind of casualties the Ukrainians have taken, and what their logistics is like.  All the negative stories are about the Russian Army, and I'm fine with that.  But it means the fog of war is heavy from the towel boy perspective and making good guesses is tough.  But my gut feeling is that because the Ukrainians are carrying out the amount of counter attacks that they are, and that because the Russians are in some cases actively fleeing or withdrawing, that the war is going well for Ukraine due to them husbanding some reserves and being able to utilize them. 

The UA is continuing to press counter-attacks northwest of Keev.  It's the real deal.  They're rolling up the Russian right flank and it looks like they are actually pressing forward to try and take Ivankiv back, which would cut off the MSR from Belarus.  It's the possibility of a great victory in northern Ukraine and probably isn't being talked about enough yet.  Will Smith vs Chris Rock taking place and all.  The Ukrainian General Staff actually says it has encircled the Russians in Hostomel, though analysists seem to be unsure due to satellite imagery. 

To the east of Keev, the Russians are laying down minefields.  Not as much urban area as to the northwest of the capitol. The Ukrainians are still being successful hitting logistics convoys in this area.  A Russian attack on Chernihiv was defeated, but the Russians were successful in taking Slavutych on the east bank of the Dniepro.  A Ukrainian counterattack successfully retook Luk'yanivka, threatening the new Russian defensive positions to the east of Kyiv from behind. 

Strategically, the Russians are abandoning the Keev front.  It's no longer where they will be placing their eggs.  The assault on the capitol failed, and it failed in the first 2-4 days.  They will be keeping their forces in the area as much as possible in defensive positions, with the goal of keeping the Ukrainian reserves occupied with them instead of being able to effect the Donbass front, the new Russian primary axis of advance and their new strategic goal.  Hold the Donbass, escalate to deescalate.  Offer peace for keeping Donbass and Crimea.  Pooter can sell that as a win. 

Sumy remains under intense air and artillery attack but is still holding.  Reports that Russian forces to the east of Sumy are actually withdrawing back to Russia.  Ukrainians are attacking from the south towards Sumy and have retaken Trostyanets and Boromila. Sumy has basically become the Bastogne of northwest Ukraine.  The failure of the Russians to take the town interrupted the Russian's ability to advance on Keev from the east and pincer the capitol.  If the Russians are actually withdrawing from the area it would significantly impact their forces still stuck to the east of Keev.  Another possible disaster for the Russians in the making. 

In the Donbass, the Russians are attacking and seem to have taken the center of Izium, but Ukrainian counterattacks seem to have held them from advancing past the city and breaking out though the defensive line.  This is where the old Soviet science would say to commit the reserve and create a breakthrough, but I don't think the Russians have a second echelon, if the ever did.  Severodonetsk continues to hold.  Ukrainian counterattacks east of Kharkiv. 

Mariupol remains under siege and is tying up lots of Russian artillery, infantry, and armor while they pound the city down block by block. Mariupol is basically being sacrificed now to give the rest of the Donbass more time. 

The Ukrainians have been letting some of their pilots that are still alive talk to the media.  Several good print stories and looks like an interview on CNN.  Trying to let the pilots make the case for the planes themselves. 

https://www.cnn.com/europe/live-news/ukraine-russia-putin-news-03-24-22/h_e22a1580767def79558346ade340f661

https://coffeeordie.com/ukrainian-mig-29-pilot-interview/

As I said at the beginning.  Things continue to look good for Ukraine.  If the counterattacks around Keev and Sumy are successful, and we see mass surrender of Russian units, the Ukrainians will be able to refocus on the Donbass.  Continued logistics support from NATO is crucial.  The withdrawal of Russian troops from around Sumy could also be a sign that Sumy is about to be hit with a chemical or nuclear attack.  Sumy has already been identified as the most likely target of a chemical attack, and it follows that they could use a nuke there as well.  If the Russian army starts to break, it would be the decision point, if it has not already been reached.  As many as 1/3 of the Russian Army in theatre has been killed, captured, or wounded.  At 50%, things will start to crack. 


yossarian22c

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #433 on: March 28, 2022, 10:10:28 AM »
A little late but I think the appropriate response to a chemical or bio attack by Russia in Ukraine is to announce a no fly zone. Then say any Russian troops not out of the country in 48 hours will be targets for the USAF. Then open the boarders for Poland and the other Balkan states to send their armies into Ukraine to aid them. Just make sure Russia has good retreating lanes.

The Ukrainians have done well enough on their own it may be the right strategic call to do all that anyway. At this point no one else is coming in to help the Russians. China isn't going to put their ass on the line for a failed Russian adventure. So as long as we let the Russians retreat with enough men and equipment that they don't feel too weak I think we avoid any escalation (nuclear) at this point.

yossarian22c

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #434 on: March 28, 2022, 10:22:38 AM »
An alternative would be to fly the Ukrainian pilots out to Utah (I think that's where the drone pilots are stationed) and let them pilot drones to take out Russian equipment. Fly the drones to Poland for maintenance and reloading, then "launch" them for combat out of Ukraine. The best American drones could probably do a number on the big Russian artillery pieces shelling cities.

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #435 on: March 28, 2022, 10:44:53 AM »
A little late but I think the appropriate response to a chemical or bio attack by Russia in Ukraine is to announce a no fly zone. Then say any Russian troops not out of the country in 48 hours will be targets for the USAF. Then open the boarders for Poland and the other Balkan states to send their armies into Ukraine to aid them. Just make sure Russia has good retreating lanes.

But that is not the response Pooter wants.  He needs one of two things.  Nuclear response by NATO to force negotiation, or conventional victory to achieve the same.  If NATO does not respond nucularly, this will just encourage Pooter to continue to up the ante.  Start using more chemical attacks, perhaps on NATO troops, and will continue until the chemical attacks give him a conventional victory or he achieves escalation for negotiation. 

I've said myself that the best move would be just to respond conventionally, but I fear it would not work.  We can certainly handle chemical warfare better than tactical nuclear warfare, but it would be dicey.  It would especially be hard on the Ukrainian civilians. 

I don't see the point of saving Ukraine for the Ukrainians if all of Ukraine has turned into a radioactive dust bowl or if millions of Ukrainians have died from Sarin attacks.  I would LOVE to not respond to a chemical or tac nuke attack, but not doing so will only encourage more such attacks.  Better to respond equally up front to show resolve and that victory cannot be achieved that way.  That will put an end to chemical or tactical nuclear attacks by Russia, and Russia will transition to threatening strategic nuclear war on NATO and the United States.  This is a war that Pooter cannot win, but he can hope that American and European fears of "the end of humanity" would drive them to force Ukraine to the bargaining table and give up the Donbass and Crimea.  And he's probably right. 

As much as I would hate it, and the Ukrainians would HATE IT, and HATE US FOR IT, I am satisfied that if the Russians agreed to a ceasefire, that Ukraine could eventually be reunited by time and continued economic pressure.  That continued death and the risk of global stategic thermonuclear war, no matter how small, would not be worth pressing given the advantages the United States, the West, and NATO have economically in the long run.  We will have a second cold war and iron curtain.  The Russian economy will wither and Russia will become the North Korea of Europe.  West and Central Europe will get off Russian gas.  Sanctions will go on.  Pooter will eventually die like Stalin.  Either of natural causes or poisoned by one of his own.  It may take another 40-50 years.  But I see it as the lesser evil. 

The alternative is to press Pooter and call his bluff.  If so we should just go in now and do it.  Why let the Ukrainians die by the thousands when we'll end up at the same place?  What is the chance that Pooter just takes an eventual loss by the Ukrainians after another month to a year.  At the cost of how many lives?  Because we are afraid of what?  We're afraid of Russia losing?  Because that is what the trigger is.  If we're afraid of Russia losing, then we're backing the wrong side.  Because we are actively working now, rightly so, for Russia to lose.  And if they lose, when they lose, will be the decision point.  Will Pooter just lose and walk away to be guillotined by his own people?  Or will he escalate for a desperate victory, something to show for all the suffering? 

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #436 on: March 28, 2022, 10:47:25 AM »
An alternative would be to fly the Ukrainian pilots out to Utah (I think that's where the drone pilots are stationed) and let them pilot drones to take out Russian equipment. Fly the drones to Poland for maintenance and reloading, then "launch" them for combat out of Ukraine. The best American drones could probably do a number on the big Russian artillery pieces shelling cities.

I've addressed that the problem with this is that Predators and Reapers do not have air to air combat capabilities, and this is what the Ukrainians want.  They want to be able to shoot down the Russian aircraft bombing their own troops and cities.   

yossarian22c

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #437 on: March 28, 2022, 11:06:17 AM »
An alternative would be to fly the Ukrainian pilots out to Utah (I think that's where the drone pilots are stationed) and let them pilot drones to take out Russian equipment. Fly the drones to Poland for maintenance and reloading, then "launch" them for combat out of Ukraine. The best American drones could probably do a number on the big Russian artillery pieces shelling cities.

I've addressed that the problem with this is that Predators and Reapers do not have air to air combat capabilities, and this is what the Ukrainians want.  They want to be able to shoot down the Russian aircraft bombing their own troops and cities.   

I doubt they would turn down being able to take out the artillery shelling their cities. I know it isn't what they want, but being able to target artillery, or maybe more strategically the supply lines with American drones wouldn't hurt their cause.

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #438 on: March 28, 2022, 11:21:07 AM »
I doubt they would turn down being able to take out the artillery shelling their cities. I know it isn't what they want, but being able to target artillery, or maybe more strategically the supply lines with American drones wouldn't hurt their cause.

It wouldn't hurt but they already have some done capabilities with the Turkish Bayraktars they have.  Perhaps more would help, but it doesn't fill the hole they want filled. 

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #439 on: March 28, 2022, 12:29:06 PM »
Interesting turn of events. 

"Bellingcat is reporting that three members of the delegation attending the peace talks between Ukraine and Russia on the night of 3 to 4 March 2022 experienced symptoms consistent with poisoning with chemical weapons.  One of the victims was Russian entrepreneur Roman Abramovich.  Abramovich, along with another Russian entrepreneur, had taken part in the negotiations alongside Ukraine's MP Rustem Umerov.  The negotiation round on the afternoon of 3 March took place on Ukrainian territory, and lasted until about 10pm.  Three members of the negotiating team retreated to an apartment in Kyiv later that night and felt initial symptoms - including eye and skin inflammation and piercing pain in the eyes - later that night.  The symptoms did not abate until the morning.  The next day the group of negotiators drove from Kyiv to Lviv on the way to Poland and then to Istanbul, to continue informal negotiations with the Russian side.  A Bellingcat investigator was asked to help provide an examination by chemical weapons specialists.   Based on remote and on-site examinations, the experts concluded that the symptoms are most likely the result of international poisoning with an undefined chemical weapon.  An alternative less likely hypothesis was use of microwave irradiation.  The symptoms gradually subsided in the course of the following week.  The three men experiencing the symptoms consumed only chocolate and water in the house before the symptoms appeared.  A fourth member of the team who also consumed these did not experience symptoms.  According to two consulted CW experts and a doctor, the symptoms were most consistent with variants of porphyrin, organophosphates, or bicyclic substances.  A definitie determination was not possible do to the absence of specialized lab equipment near the victims.  The experts said the dosage and type of toxin used was likely insufficient to cause life-threatening damage, and most likely was intended to scare the victims as opposed to cause permanent damage.  The victims said they were not aware who might have had an interest in the attack."

https://twitter.com/bellingcat/status/1508463513013997580?cxt=HHwWmMCyndXkke8pAAAA

https://www.wsj.com/articles/roman-abramovich-and-ukrainian-peace-negotiators-suffer-symptoms-of-suspected-poisoning-11648480493

I will not speculate.  Too many variables. 

TheDrake

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #440 on: March 29, 2022, 10:16:43 AM »
So certain multinational companies, such as Pepsico, are continuing some operations on humanitarian grounds - citing the need to ensure food security for the Russian people. It left me wondering about the morality of the concept, considering that Russia is trying to starve out Ukrainian cities. I mean, its not like you have carte blanche to commit any war crimes that you are a victim of. But... there's a "what's good for the goose" effect.

It also has a certain demonstration of how multinational corporations can wield potential near-military power. At least when it comes to logistics. And putting the screws to the citizens/residents of a nation. We saw a certain amount of this with South Africa during apartheid and opinion was mixed there also. Was it okay to cause massive unemployment that would be just as likely to hurt those they were trying to help?

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #441 on: March 29, 2022, 11:02:23 AM »
So certain multinational companies, such as Pepsico, are continuing some operations on humanitarian grounds - citing the need to ensure food security for the Russian people. It left me wondering about the morality of the concept, considering that Russia is trying to starve out Ukrainian cities. I mean, its not like you have carte blanche to commit any war crimes that you are a victim of. But... there's a "what's good for the goose" effect.

I think there needs to be some pragmatic/strategic view of the matter, rather than just looking at it morally.  I think that part of the strategy that is now in place, between NATO and the United States, is to end the war through economic and domestic political pressure, while denying Russia victory in Ukraine by providing just enough military assistance to keep Russia from winning while not enough military assistance to cause a possible escalation, perhaps even avoiding a decision point altogether (hence Zelenskyy complaining that the US and UK are primarily interested in using the war in Ukraine to "wear Russia down" instead of just winning outright, which he has something of a point about). 

So, when it comes to utilizing economic and domestic political pressure, the central targets there are not just "the economy", but the people themselves, creating that impetus for political change.  Whether it be policy change or regime change.  The problem with that is that pressuring a population in this manner takes a deft hand.  You have to pressure as much as possible without pressuring too much to the point that the people rally around the leadership rather than question their policies. 

As to the wisdom of this strategy of putting political pressure on the people and oligarchs of Russia, I'm doubtful.  I knew it would not have any effect short term to prevent or stop a war.  Over time I'm unsure what it's effects will be.  These are matters for political scientists and psychologists, and I'm just a bartender at the O Club.  My views of political scientists and psychologists are not always high, though.  I'm unsure of the ability of the oligarchs or people of Russia to force change on the Pooter regime.  Historically, the only forces capable of forcing change on regimes such as this are the security/intelligence apparatus and the military.  Pooter seems to have a tight grip on both these.  I would not bet on resistance being able to coalesce, though I cannot see everything.  I in fact see very little. 

But this seems to be part of the strategy so that's where we are.  Trying to figure out how much pressure is the right amount.  I don't know.  Though how much power the strategic decision makers have over Pepsi is a question to consider.  How effective can your strategy really be if you do not control the forces used to exert pressure? 

I'm unsure there is a central strategy being effected.  It's not like talks between the US and UK during WWII, where France and Poland are basically junior partners without much say.  You've got several major partners, with several minor partners that are in no way obliged to go along with what the senior partners want.  You have the US, UK, Germany, Turkey and France as the major partners.  There are major differences between the US/UK/Turk approach and the German/French approach.  The Germans and French are already under strain from the US/UK and the eastern european countries.  Poland, the Baltics, Romania, Czechia, and Slovakia are all junior partners that want more done, and are exerting lots of pressure on the Germans and French, but they are still junior partners for the UK/US/Turk block.  Then you have the Italians and Hungarians who are basically attaching themselves to the German/French approach but for entirely different reasons.    This doesn't even get into the nordic states or other minor states like the Dutch and Belgians and Greeks, etc. 

NATO is honestly a bit too large and unwieldy. It's easy as a defense pact because defensive plans can be come up with ahead of time with force allocations, strategies and responsibilities, etc.  It's harder to do what we're doing now.  Especially with 30 members instead of just the two major players it started as.  Even three major players became difficult when France exerted itself.   

Honestly, if the war ends and Ukraine is still around, they'd be better creating a new defensive pact just between the eastern European countries, with maybe the US and UK along.  I've always been a great proponent of NATO, but it's become unwieldy and the diplomacy of the French and Germans turned out to be useless.  Eastern Europe needs a military alliance.  Not to be tied to a committee of diplomats. 

This is not to say that the diplomats and economic support of the French and Germans are not needed.  They just shouldn't be part of the military aspect anymore. Their military assistance isn't even needed.  The talkers and political scientists have their place.   

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #442 on: March 29, 2022, 01:12:44 PM »
So, if we have not exactly entered the endgame, we have at least entered the mid-game and are past the opening. 

The Russians are making concessions and are appearing to attempt to reach a cease fire.  Appearing to anyways.  They have dropped the demand that Ukraine be "de-nazified" or "demilitarized", and have said they would not see joining the EU as a deal breaker.  Ukraine has said they would drop joining NATO.  I don't blame them, I don't think they want to be in any organization involving the Germans and Hungarians at this time.  Ukrainians are already talking about forming their own defense pact, much like I described in the post above.  The Russians probably understand this and are only looking at keeping Ukraine out of NATO as a propaganda victory. 

There is a long way to go for a cease-fire, though.  If anecdotal evidence from Abramovich about hand-written notes between Pooter and Zelenskyy is true, they are nowhere near coming to terms.  Pooter of course wants the Donbass and to keep Crimea.  Zelenskyy isn't in the mood to give it to him. 

Russia is talking about "pulling back from combat operations around Kyiv to assist in negotiations".  I think this is their way to hide the fact that they're basically retreating from around Keev.  While the Russians are pretending to pull back from the fight, I think it is actually important for the Ukrainians to keep pressing, hard.  I also think that NATO and the US need to keep pushing aid hard.  I don't think this is the time to slowing Ukraine down or putting pressure on them to make concessions.  I'm not sure if it would work anyways.  Maybe at the end of the day Zelenskyy would give up the Donbass if NATO pulls all their aid, but it would have to come to that, which, frankly, I don't think that NATO leaders could do.  Some of them, maybe.  But not all of them.  Too much public pressure at this point. 

So I still believe we are on the road to some kind of escalation, though it appears the risk of full NATO entry into the war is keeping Russia on a leash right now.  See, NATO deterrence works.  So far.  Plus the nuclear/chemical taboo.  Time and pressure favors Ukraine.  If Russia is on the verge of loss, we always come back to the same point.  The only difference is the amount of sunken cost.  How many thousands of Ukrainian and Russian lives are lost before the point is reached. 

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #443 on: March 29, 2022, 07:28:00 PM »
Report and pictures of an ammo depot in Belgorod, Russia, going up in flames.  Belgorod being a major logistics point and jumping off point for the Russian northwestern axis/front.  I've read suggestions of it being Ukrainian SOF/saboteurs or just more Russian incompetence/an accident.  It is was Ukrainians then you have to credit them for hitting this war on all cylinders. 

Report in the NY Post that the WH is open to Ukrainians trading land for peace, "it's up to them", vs British demanding a full Russian withdrawal.  I honestly think this story is about a CNN reporter trying to get the drop on the WH and get a sound byte/story. 

I believe that the Russians have announced a "withdrawal" from around Keev to cover the fact that they have actually been pushed back by Ukrainian counterattacks and are on the verge of being cut off and surrounded south of Ivankiv. 


TheDrake

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #444 on: March 30, 2022, 10:19:33 AM »
Report and pictures of an ammo depot in Belgorod, Russia, going up in flames.  Belgorod being a major logistics point and jumping off point for the Russian northwestern axis/front.  I've read suggestions of it being Ukrainian SOF/saboteurs or just more Russian incompetence/an accident.  It is was Ukrainians then you have to credit them for hitting this war on all cylinders. 

Report in the NY Post that the WH is open to Ukrainians trading land for peace, "it's up to them", vs British demanding a full Russian withdrawal.  I honestly think this story is about a CNN reporter trying to get the drop on the WH and get a sound byte/story. 

I believe that the Russians have announced a "withdrawal" from around Keev to cover the fact that they have actually been pushed back by Ukrainian counterattacks and are on the verge of being cut off and surrounded south of Ivankiv.

I'm confused. How is the NY Post story related to a CNN reporter?

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #445 on: March 30, 2022, 10:58:37 AM »
I'm confused. How is the NY Post story related to a CNN reporter?

The story in the NY Post was about a question that a CNN reporter asked. 

Because all some reporters do is re-write things that other reporters wrote.

Grant

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #446 on: March 30, 2022, 12:01:31 PM »
So Ukraine is proposing "neutrality" as long as it can have security guarantors.  Basically something similar to what I mentioned earlier about just forgetting about NATO and finding something similar. 

Germany has offered to be a  guarantor.  No response yet on what the Ukrainians think of German guarantees. 


TheDrake

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #447 on: March 30, 2022, 12:16:15 PM »
We're not in NATO, we're living in an autonomous collective that just happens to include all the members of NATO. I'm pretty sure the way the agreement is going to be worded, Ukraine won't be allowed to join any mutual defense pact in order to satisfy "neutrality". Now as to what the hell good that agreement is going to do, or why every country involved wouldn't break it with impunity, is highly interesting.

yossarian22c

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #448 on: March 30, 2022, 12:22:14 PM »
So Ukraine is proposing "neutrality" as long as it can have security guarantors.  Basically something similar to what I mentioned earlier about just forgetting about NATO and finding something similar. 

Germany has offered to be a  guarantor.  No response yet on what the Ukrainians think of German guarantees.

What stops Ukraine from joining NATO the minute Russian troops depart? A handshake deal with the Russians pointing a gun at their heads? I don't know why that should be honored in any meaningful way.

If they have to give Russia something in the peace deal, give them that and then ignore it in a year and join up or form alliances with Poland and the other Baltic states that are ready to join in the fight today.

cherrypoptart

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Re: Ще́дрик, щедри́к, ще́дрівочка
« Reply #449 on: March 30, 2022, 12:58:07 PM »
Promises and contracts made under duress and threat are not binding, not legally and not morally.

Another option besides making alliances is for Ukraine to go nuclear.

This Russian invasion could be a fatal blow to nuclear non-proliferation. Ukraine was promised that if they gave up their nukes and didn't pursue more then they would be protected, that what has happened would not happen. They were lied to, obviously. Just like every other country on the planet is being lied to about being protected from a nuclear power like Russia invading them and carving them up like a Thanksgiving turkey.

Sure, they can get sanctions. Maybe they can get arms. They can get online support by twits on twitter. Tibet can get Richard Gere and Ukraine can get Sean Penn, bless both their precious hearts. They can even get hackers on their side. But none of that brings back the pregnant women killed in attacks on hospitals, the little girls Putin murdered on the street with cluster bombs. Obviously none of that was enough of a deterrent to stop thousands of Ukrainians from continuing to get slaughtered and for the man responsible to be above the law and beyond reach of being held personally responsible and personally punished. All we know for sure so far is that everything that was on the table failed. And the United Nations? Failed. Now what if Ukraine had nukes? Would that have failed too? That, we don't know. Other countries have to be looking at their options now too. And nobody could blame them.