Tag: migrated 20211202

THE UKRAINIAN ARMY HAS GOT BETTER AT FIGHTING RUSSIAN-BACKED SEPARATISTS

What to make of the military analysts who calmly list the reasons why the most serious war in Europe since 1945 might begin in January? The flat, muddy terrain of south-eastern Ukraine will be frozen solid by then, allowing Russian tanks to roll in. It is in the middle of the deployment cycle for the conscripts who make up much of Russia’s ground forces. And Russia may find itself with a pretext for invasion, since the new year has in the past brought front line flare-ups in Ukraine’s war against Russian-backed separatists. Besides, the 100,000 Russian troops massed near the border are more than mere theatre; Russia is setting up field hospitals and calling up its…

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NATO CHIEF SAYS ALLIES MUST PREPARE FOR THE WORST IN UKRAINE

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg warned Tuesday that the U.S.-led military organization must prepare for the worst as concern mounts that Russia could be preparing to invade Ukraine. NATO is worried about a Russian buildup of heavy equipment and troops near Ukraine’s northern border, not far from Belarus. Ukraine says Moscow kept about 90,000 troops in the area following massive war games in western Russia earlier this year, and could easily mobilize them. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said last week that his country’s intelligence service had uncovered plans for a…

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UKRAINE AND THE 30 ALLIES WILL DECIDE WHEN UKRAINE JOINS NATO

Speaking at a press conference following the meeting of NATO Foreign Ministers, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg stated, “You know, just the question is reflecting something, which I think we should be very much aware of, that is not acceptable. And that is that Russia has a sphere of influence. They try to re-establish some kind of acceptance that Russia has the right to control what neighbours do, or not do. And that’s the kind of world we don’t want to return to, where big powers had a say, or a kind of right, to put limitations of what sovereign, independent nations can do. I, myself, I’m coming from a small country bordering Russia. And I’m very glad that our NATO Allies have never respected that Russia has the kind of right to establish a…

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FIGHT OVER PUTIN'S PIPELINE CONSUMES US CONGRESS

Axios reported, “The Biden administration, House and Senate Democrats and even the German government have been engaged in a multi-pronged effort to stop Congress from imposing mandatory sanctions on a Kremlin-backed natural gas pipeline. President Biden’s decision to let Nord Stream 2 proceed has put his allies in an uncomfortable bind. Republicans have already blocked dozens of Biden’s foreign-policy nominees, and the dispute threatened to derail an annual defense bill passed by Congress every year for six decades. Democrats and Republicans have for years opposed Nord Stream 2, which would…

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LIZ TRUSS URGES NATO ALLIES TO BLOCK RUSSIA’S NORD STREAM 2 GAS PIPELINE

Britain’s foreign secretary has joined a last-minute push to urge Nato allies to block the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, warning that Moscow would exploit its position if European nations became reliant on it for energy. Liz Truss, at her first Nato foreign ministers meeting in Riga, also warned that Russia would be making a strategic mistake if it invaded Ukraine, promising an economic and diplomatic response by Nato. The UK has been at the forefront of Nato countries, along with Poland, Ukraine and the Baltic states, to question the wisdom of the pipeline, which will take gas from Russia to Europe through the…

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THE DUAL THREATS CONFRONTING UKRAINE

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s allegation of a foiled Russian coup attempt against him underscores the linked external and internal threats confronting Ukraine. The external threat is most visible in the approximately 114,000 troops Russia has massed on Ukraine’s borders because Russian President Vladimir Putin understands that his patrimonial autocracy cannot survive with an independent Westward-leaning Ukraine on its borders. Since empire is the historical corollary of Russian autocracy and are equally dependent on each other to survive, from Moscow’s standpoint Ukraine cannot be…

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ПРО НАС

Вся історія відносин між Москвою та Україною на протязі більше як 250 літ, з моменту злуки цих двох держав є планомірне, безоглядне, безсоромне, нахабне нищення української нації всякими способами, вщерть до стертя всякого сліду її, щоб навіть імени її не лишилось….І здавалось, така політика мала успіх…Лишився сам народ, без панства, без літератури, без школи, безграмотний, знесилений, оплутаний законами й державними апаратами визиску. Він уже забув свою історію, свою колишню боротьбу за соціальне й національне визволення… Здавалось, зроблено було все чисто: закопано, засипано, землю на могилі вглажено й пісочком присипано…Отже, ніби…

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SENATE DEMOCRATS’ RUSSIAN PIPELINE HEADACHE JUST WON’T GO AWAY

The Biden administration’s decision to waive sanctions on a Russian-built pipeline in Europe keeps hitting close to home. The move to let the pipeline go forward, which drew bipartisan criticism at the time, not only kicked off the Republican-led blockade of President Joe Biden’s foreign-policy nominees — now it’s imperiling passage of the annual defense policy bill, typically a bipartisan affair that’s become law each year for six decades. GOP senators have resorted to hardball tactics to force the administration to implement sanctions on the Russia-to-Germany natural gas line, known as Nord Stream 2. Republicans have slow-walked confirmation of…

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RUSSIA-UKRAINE BORDER: WHY MOSCOW IS STOKING TENSIONS

When Russia wanted the US to sit up and take notice last April it sent tanks towards the Ukrainian border. The show of force worked: President Joe Biden called Russia’s Vladimir Putin and in June the two men met in Geneva. But whatever they agreed about Ukraine at their summit, something has since gone awry. In recent weeks, Russian tanks have been moving west towards Ukraine once again, prompting fresh, even starker warnings from US intelligence circles that a cross-border offensive could be on the cards. This build-up of Russian forces was spotted some 300km (185 miles) from Ukraine Moscow insists that’s “anti-Russian” hysteria, and…

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THREAT OF RUSSIAN INVASION OF UKRAINE TESTS BIDEN ADMINISTRATION

The White House is reviewing options to deter a feared Russian invasion of Ukraine, including providing more military aid to Kyiv and threatening sanctions, to dissuade Russian President Vladimir Putin from escalating the simmering conflict into a full-blown transatlantic crisis. The deliberations come as President Biden and his aides prepare for a virtual call with Putin next month, a moment that analysts see as an opportunity to signal the costs of an invasion to the Kremlin but also present a path for reducing tension. Amid spiking U.S. concern over unusual movements by Russian troops on the Ukrainian border, Secretary of State Antony Blinken embarked…

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PUTIN'S DANGEROUS UNDECLARED WAR AGAINST EUROPE

Finally, western leaders are waking up to the fact that Vladimir Putin has been waging an undeclared war against Europe and the west since 2014 when it annexed the Crimean peninsula from Ukraine. This is because he has escalated his warfare. In August, he weaponized energy exports by throttling back natural gas shipments, creating shortages and enormous price hikes. Also during the summer, Putin’s proxy, Belarus, weaponized migration. Thousands of residents from the Middle East were encouraged to fly to Minsk, then were transported to the border with Poland where they were promised they could easily sneak into the…

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UKRAINE’S ZELENSKY ALLEGES RUSSIA PLOTTING COUP AGAINST HIM FOR NEXT WEEK

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Friday that a group of Russians and Ukrainians is planning to stage a coup d’etat in Ukraine next month and that the plotters are trying to enlist the help of the country’s richest man, Rinat Akhmetov. Zelensky, speaking at a “press marathon” for local and international media, said that audio recordings, obtained by Ukraine’s security services, caught plotters discussing their plans and mentioning Akhmetov’s name. Akhmetov was not involved in the actual coup plot, however, Zelensky said. “I believe [Akhmetov] is being dragged into the war against Ukraine,” Zelensky said. “This will be a big mistake, because it is impossible to fight against the people, against the president elected by the …

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RUSSIAN SABRE-RATTLING SHAKES UKRAINE BONDS

Escalating Russian military activity on the border with Ukraine is rattling foreign investors, pushing prices of Ukrainian government bonds to their lowest levels in more than a year. Warnings by U.S. government officials about the potential threat of a Russian invasion worsened the selloff in recent days. The price of Ukraine’s $1.3 billion 7.75% bond due 2024 fell to around 100 cents on the dollar on Wednesday from around 107 cents two weeks earlier, its lowest level since October 2020, according to Advantage Data. A bond due 2040 with payments linked to Ukraine’s economic performance has fallen about 16% since mid-November to 89 cents on…

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U.S. LOOKS TO NATO TO DETER RUSSIAN AGGRESSION AS UKRAINE WARNS OF POSSIBLE COUP

The Biden administration plans to use a meeting of NATO foreign ministers to focus on how the alliance should respond to Russian military pressure on Ukraine as the Ukrainian president warned Friday of a possible Moscow-backed coup attempt. The meeting, which is scheduled to begin on Tuesday, comes amid debate within the alliance’s ranks about how to be firm about the possibility of Russian aggression, as it masses troops near Ukraine, while keeping political channels open to Moscow. Karen Donfried, the top State Department official for European affairs, said Friday that the U.S. is deeply concerned about “large and unusual” Russian troop movements near Ukraine, which…

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THE LETTER FROM HELL

Russia’s most recent military build-up at the borders of Europe’s largest country may be preparatory to a possible expansion of its invasion and ongoing occupation since 2014, writes Victor Rud. And it’s weaponising of human suffering is not new, this time with the engineered refugee crisis at the Belorussian/Polish border. The two are integrated moves on the chessboard and, minimally, the final test of Western resolve. Seemingly long ago, immediate post WWII Europe spoke to the West’s ossified, sell-defeating mindset that has led to the tinder box in…

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ГОЛОДОМОР-ГЕНОЦИД 1932-1933 В УКРАЇНІ: ВИЗНАННЯ ЗАРАДИ ВІЛЬНОГО МАЙБУТНЬОГО СВІТУ

Щорічно в останню суботу листопада українці та усі вільні народи світу вшановують пам’ять мільйонів людей, які загинули від штучного голоду – цілеспрямованого геноциду, організованого в Україні комуністичним окупаційним режимом впродовж 1932-1933 років. Після завершення Першої світової війни, коли імперії впали, а поневолені народи здобули свободу, українці розпочали боротьбу за власну державність. На жаль, після довгого збройного спротиву, ці прагнення зазнали краху. У 1921 році більша частина українських земель опинилися під контролем російських більшовиків. Однак окупація України не означала підкорення її народу, який…

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HOLODOMOR REMEMBRANCE DAY: WHY THE PAST MATTERS FOR THE FUTURE

As Americans sit down to their Thanksgiving meals on the last Thursday in November, Ukrainians will be commemorating the memory of millions who were murdered in 1932-33. The last Saturday in November is Holodomor Remembrance Day in Ukraine, a time to mark the anniversary of Joseph Stalin’s engineered starvation of the nation. In the West, the date should also be remembered as a pivotal event that ensured the viability of the Soviet Union, with its consequent implications for hundreds of millions in the free world. The Holodomor in Ukraine is too often mistakenly grouped…

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RUSSIA WON’T LET UKRAINE GO WITHOUT A FIGHT

Ominous signs indicate that Russia may conduct a military offensive in Ukraine as early as the coming winter. Moscow has quietly built up its forces along the Ukrainian border over the past several months, which could be a prelude to a military operation that aims to resolve the political deadlock in Ukraine in its favor. Although Russian President Vladimir Putin may once again be engaging in coercive diplomacy, this time around Moscow may not be bluffing. If no agreement is reached, the conflict may renew on a much larger scale. Why would Putin risk geopolitical and economic upheaval by reigniting the…

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THE RUSSIAN PUBLIC IS BEING PRIMED FOR ANOTHER OF PUTIN’S WARS

Domestic propagandists and state TV pundits are promoting the idea of an inevitable confrontation with the West as Russia’s military posture grows increasingly hostile, causing major concern for its nearest neighbors and NATO. Ukraine remains the crown jewel for the Kremlin and the Russian public is being primed for the intended absorption of more territories under the umbrella of the Russian Federation, while NATO is being accused of fomenting the potential escalation. Whether or not the Kremlin is planning to speed up its creeping assault against Ukraine’s Donbas region in the near future is a mystery even to the most knowledgeable experts with close access to…

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СИТУАЦІЯ НАВКОЛО РОСІЙСЬКОЇ АГРЕСІЇ В УКРАЇНІ

Російська Федерація продовжує збройну агресію проти України та вживає заходів з недопущення інтеграції української держави до європейських структур безпеки. Основною метою політики Російської Федерації щодо України є знищення української державності та встановлення над нею повного контролю. При цьому керівництво Росії червоними лініями для себе визначило наближення НАТО до кордонів з Росією та повноправне членство України в Альянсі. Для досягнення своїх політичних цілей Російська Федерація розпочала збройну агресію проти України та значно наростила воєнний потенціал на Південно-Західному напрямку. З 2014 року в Південному та Західному військових округах були створені…

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ARE WE READY TO DIE FOR KYIV? HOW TWITTER IS HELPING TO PUSH THE WEST TOWARDS SURRENDERING UKRAINE

In a November 19 article in the Politico publication, Samuel Charap, an analyst with the Rand corporation analyzes Russia’s military threat on Ukraine’s border. Ascertaining that the US approach towards containing the buildup isn’t working, Charap suggests that “an unsavory compromise may be everyone’s best hope,” thereby preparing Western readers and policymakers to sell out Ukraine. Charap does not suggest this openly, but rather in a veiled way, urging the US to use its “largely untapped” leverage with Ukraine to nudge Kyiv to implement the Minsk agreements and thereby hamper Russia’s thirst for a…

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Politico reported, “Two senators are pushing to boost shipments of lethal weapons to Kyiv as the West nervously watches Russian troops and equipment mass along Ukraine’s eastern border. Sens. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) are seeking to increase Pentagon funding to arm Ukraine by another $50 million as part of annual defense policy legislation being debated on the Senate floor. But their effort, along with a heap of other proposals from senators in both parties, is in limbo after a push to secure votes on amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act hit a roadblock on the floor last week. And those measures could founder if senators don’t strike a deal when they return to finalize the defense bill after Thanksgiving. The…

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CANADA CONSIDERS BOOSTING MILITARY AID TO UKRAINE AS RUSSIA AMASSES TROOPS AT THE BORDER

Canada is considering bolstering its military mission to Ukraine, amid a debate over whether additional NATO forces would deter Russian President Vladimir Putin from further aggression against his country’s neighbour. Two sources with knowledge of the deliberations said Defence Minister Anita Anand is considering deploying hundreds of additional troops to support the Canadian soldiers already in Ukraine on a training mission. Other options being looked at include moving a warship into the Black Sea, or redeploying some of the CF-18 fighter jets based in Romania. Any reinforcement would be intended as a…

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HOW TO SURVIVE WINTER, CONFOUND PUTIN AND SAVE UKRAINE

Russian President Vladimir Putin is engaged in a multi-pronged escalation of threats within Europe. His schemes can be defeated. Exploiting what he judges a superior strategic position in the face of US retreat and fragmentation and weakness in Europe, Putin sees opportunities to make substantial gains in what Russia considers its sphere of influence in Europe’s East. Faced with this set of challenges to its authority and cohesion, the West really has no choice but to stand firm in the face of Russian aggression. These are serious threats and could signal a winter of Russia-induced hardship, the likes of which Europe has not experienced for decades. There are at least five immediate threats. Russia is: •Squeezing Europe’s gas supplies ahead of the…

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DEFENSIVE PUTIN ACCUSES WEST OF IGNORING RUSSIAN RED LINES

In recent weeks, Russian President Vladimir Putin has been escalating his hybrid war against the Western world. However, his annual speech to Russian ambassadors on November 18 saw Putin at his most uninspired and defensive. The Russian leader’s long list of criticisms and complaints left the distinct impression that while everything in Russian foreign policy has gone wrong, none of it is actually his fault. Unsurprisingly, Putin dedicated much of his speech to the war in Ukraine, which he acknowledged as the Kremlin’s key foreign policy concern. Less typical was his sharp criticism of the role played by Germany and France in efforts to resolve the conflict. Putin accused Paris and Berlin of “indulging the current Kiev leadership’s course on dismantling the…

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VLADIMIR PUTIN IS TESTING THE “WEAK” WEST IN UKRAINE AND POLAND

In recent months, international attention has been focused on a mounting border crisis manufactured by Kremlin-backed Belarusian dictator Alyaksandr Lukashenka on the European Union’s eastern frontier. As this border crisis now slowly deescalates, all eyes have turned to the nearby Ukrainian border with Russia, where Russian dictator Vladimir Putin has amassed a formidable potential invasion force. European and North American policymakers need to recognize that these two dramas are inter-related elements of Putin’s broader hybrid war against the West. The Kremlin strongman aims to reverse the…

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NO NEED FOR A MUNICH SELLOUT

For the second time this year, President Vladimir Putin is risking war with Ukraine to destroy its independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity. Earlier in the spring, he mobilized approximately 100,000 troops on the border but pulled them back a short (relatively speaking) distance while leaving their equipment in place. Now he has again mobilized about 114,000 troops, including elite units, and U.S. intelligence is warning allies that a war might break out in the winter. Russia has also dramatically intensified its rhetoric and claims that it is under threat from Ukraine and the West. Indeed, Putin has told the Foreign Policy Board that Russia will keep making threats and raising tensions because only that…

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US CONSIDERING SENDING EXTRA WEAPONRY TO UKRAINE AS FEARS MOUNT OVER POTENTIAL RUSSIAN INVASION

The Biden administration is weighing sending military advisers and new equipment including weaponry to Ukraine as Russia builds up forces near the border and US officials prepare allies for the possibility of another Russian invasion, multiple sources familiar with the deliberations tell CNN. The discussions about the proposed lethal aid package are happening as Ukraine has begun to warn publicly that an invasion could happen as soon as January. The package could include new Javelin anti-tank and anti-armor missiles as well as mortars, the sources said. Air defense systems, such as stinger missiles, are also under…

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WHAT THE HELL IS PUTIN DOING?

On May 23, using the phony claim of a bomb threat, Belarusian fighter jets forced a Ryanair passenger jet en route to Vilnius from Athens to land in Minsk. This was a pretext to arrest one single passenger—the Belarusian dissident Roman Protasevich. In response to this act of piracy, the European Union levied heavy sanctions against high-ranking Belarusian apparatchiks. Belarus’s dictator, Alexander Lukashenko, vowed to flood the EU with migrants and drugs: “We were stopping [them],” he raved. “Now you will catch them and eat them yourself.” He kept his promise. Over the summer, Iraqi and Belarusian travel agencies sold visas in tourist packages to Minsk to migrants seeking to enter the EU. As soon as they arrived in Minsk, Belarusian authorities picked…

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TOP DEMOCRAT PROPOSES CRUSHING SANCTIONS IF RUSSIA INVADES UKRAINE

Senate Foreign Relations Chairman Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) has introduced an amendment that would trigger a cascade of sanctions against top Russian officials, the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, major financial institutions, sovereign debt transactions and more in the event of a Russian invasion of Ukraine. U.S. officials have been sounding the alarm about Russia’s massive military buildup on the eastern border of Ukraine. The sanctions threat is intended to serve as a powerful deterrent against Russian President Vladimir Putin. Menendez’s proposal was introduced late Thursday night as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act, a must-pass defense-spending bill on which the Senate will vote after the Thanksgiving break. It would require…

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US INTELLIGENCE SHOWS RUSSIAN PLANS FOR POTENTIAL UKRAINE INVASION

Bloomberg reported on November 21, “The U.S. has shared intelligence including maps with European allies that shows a buildup of Russian troops and artillery to prepare for a rapid, large-scale push into Ukraine from multiple locations if President Vladimir Putin decided to invade, according to people familiar with the conversations. That intelligence has been conveyed to some NATO members over the past week to back up U.S. concerns about Putin’s possible intentions and an increasingly frantic diplomatic effort to deter him from any incursion, with European leaders engaging directly with the…

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RUSSIA PREPARING TO ATTACK UKRAINE BY LATE JANUARY: UKRAINE DEFENSE INTELLIGENCE AGENCY CHIEF

Russia has more than 92,000 troops amassed around Ukraine’s borders and is preparing for an attack by the end of January or beginning of February, the head of Ukraine’s defense intelligence agency told Military Times. Such an attack would likely involve airstrikes, artillery and armor attacks followed by airborne assaults in the east, amphibious assaults in Odessa and Mariupul and a smaller incursion through neighboring Belarus, Ukraine Brig. Gen. Kyrylo Budanov told Military Times Saturday morning in an exclusive interview. Russia’s large-scale Zapad 21 military exercise earlier this year proved, for instance, that they can drop upwards of 3,500 airborne and special operations troops at once, he said. The attack Russia is preparing, said Budanov, would be…

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UWC TAKES RUSSIA TO THE EUROPEAN COURT OF HUMAN RIGHTS

The Registry of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has accepted for consideration the application of the Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) on violations by the Russian Federation (RF) of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. These violations result from the decision on July 11, 2019, by the Office of the Prosecutor General of the RF declaring the activities of the UWC as undesirable on the territory of the RF. The UWC challenged this decision in all judicial instances available to it in the RF; however, its claims were denied. On August 26, 2021, the UWC sent an…

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DOCUMENTARY PUBLICATION “HOLODOMOR: THE UKRAINIAN GENOCIDE”

We are pleased to announce the publication of the Second Edition of HOLODOMOR: THE UKRAINIAN GENOCIDE, 1932-1933. The Second Edition has been thoroughly updated and vastly expanded with new data, documents and analyses divided into 10 Parts, which, among others, cover such issues as historical and political contexts of the Ukrainian famine, key Soviet documentation proving the intentionality of the Holodomor, Ukrainian demographic losses and impact of the genocide, and a comprehensive bibliography on the Holodomor. HOLODOMOR: THE UKRAINIAN GENOCIDE, 1932-1933 is a hard cover publication of 320 pp., thoroughly and pointedly illustrated, “reader-friendly”, and a strictly not-for-profit project intended for…

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ДОКУМЕНТАЛЬНЕ АНГЛОМОВНЕ ВИДАННЯ “HOLODOMOR: THE UKRAINIAN GENOCIDE”

Повідомляємо, що уже вийшло друком друге видання англомовної книги-компендіума “HOLODOMOR: THE UKRAINIAN GENOCIDE, 1932-1933.” Це видання книги значно доповнене новими даними, інформацією, документами і аналізами, що включає такі аспекти, як: історичний і політичний контекст Голодомору; основну совєтську документацію, яка виявляє планомірність Голодомору Москвою, з наміром задавити повстання в Україні проти совєтської окупації; демографічні втрати українців і наслідки геноциду; всебічну сучасну бібліографію про Голодомор. Книга “HOLODOMOR: THE UKRAINIAN GENOCIDE, 1932-1933” – це науково-популярне видання на 320 сторінок у твердій обкладинці, що складається…

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DAY OF DIGNITY AND FREEDOM

Today, the people of Ukraine and Ukrainians all over the world mark the Day of Dignity and Freedom. On November 21, 2013, the Ukrainian people rose up to defend their right to choose their own common destiny and their right to freedom and democracy. In response to the Yanukovych regime’s refusal to sign the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement, the Ukrainian people took to the streets in protest. On the night of November 29-30, at Maidan Nezalezhnosti (Independence Square) in Kyiv, the regime responded with violence. Yanukovych’s security forces attacked and savagely beat student demonstrators. The next day, hundreds of demonstrators were joined by millions. In Kyiv, and cities and towns across the country, the Ukrainian people demanded that…

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THIRTY EX-KYIV POST JOURNALISTS TO LAUNCH OWN MEDIA OUTLET

The fired team of Kyiv Post, which was abruptly shut down last week by its owner Adnan Kivan, is going to launch a new media outlet with the “values and spirit” of Ukraine’s largest and oldest English-language newspaper. They informed on their Facebook page Save the Kyiv Post: “A week ago, the Kyiv Post as we know it ceased to exist. The good news is that we continue to carry on its values and spirit. We are now moving to launch a new media outlet with 30 ex-Kyiv Post employees onboard to continue its legacy.” Olga Rudenko, the former deputy chief editor at the Kyiv Post, will be the new Editor-in-chief, the announcement said. Kyiv Post was previously headed by Brian Bonner, who expressed a desire to…

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EU SANCTIONS RUSSIA’S WAGNER GROUP TO THWART PRIVATE MILITARY MERCENARIES WITH SUSPECTED KREMLIN TIES

European Union foreign ministers agreed to impose sanctions on Russian mercenary company Wagner Group, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Monday, as European diplomats warned that the company poses a growing threat to EU interests. The preliminary agreement came after France said repeatedly over recent weeks that Mali’s government appeared close to inviting Wagner into the country, where France has thousands of troops and the EU offers significant assistance. Washington and some EU countries accuse Wagner Group of being a proxy force for Russia’s Defense Ministry. The Kremlin has denied any formal connections with the group. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said…

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PUTIN’S WAGNER

Russia’s undeclared “War against Europe” includes weaponization of its energy market and of illegal migration at the Polish-Belarusian border, but much much more. The war extends to Europe’s former colonies: Last month, American and French governments condemned the nation of Mali for hiring the Wagner Group, an organization named after Hitler’s favorite composer. But the Wagner Group is not an orchestra. It’s a private armed force that employs thousands of Russian mercenaries to wage war or simply to stir up trouble around the world. Such soldiers of fortune have been around throughout history, but Wagner is unique. It has grown in just…

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THE U.S. IS WARNING RUSSIA ON UKRAINE. SO FAR, THE MESSAGE ISN’T GETTING THROUGH.

The guns of November are locked and loaded, as Russia continues to defy U.S. and European pressure to withdraw its troops from the volatile Ukraine border. The tense Ukraine standoff is a case study in diplomatic signaling that, thus far, hasn’t worked. For weeks, senior U.S. and European officials have warned Russian President Vladimir Putin to pull back what looks ominously like an invasion force — or face harsh consequences from a U.S.-led coalition. The warning message hasn’t connected. Instead, Putin seems to be relishing the West’s anxiety. He claimed Thursday that the United States and its allies were…

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ПОМЕР НАЙТИТУЛОВАНІШИЙ УКРАЇНЕЦЬ-ГЕНЕРАЛ, ЯКИЙ ДОКОРІННО ЗМІНИВ АРМІЮ США

Найближчими днями у West Point – The U.S. Military Academy відбудеться похорон українця Миколи Кравціва — генерал-майора Армії США, який народився у Львові і виростав в Пласті. Своїми ідеями та новаторством від докорінно реформував американське військо, яке ніяк не могло оговтатись після війни у В’єтнамі. Він був єдиним українцем, якого у 100-річчя Статуї Свободи в Ню-Йорку особисто відзначив мер міста медаллю Свободи…

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THE WORLD IS WORRIED PUTIN IS ABOUT TO INVADE UKRAINE. HERE’S WHY

President Vladimir Putin is being watched closely by experts and officials who fear Russia might be planning a military escalation with its neighbor Ukraine. Tens of thousands of Russian troops have reportedly gathered at the border with Ukraine, and experts fear Russia could be about to stage a repeat of its 2014 invasion and annexation of the Ukrainian peninsula of Crimea, which prompted global outrage and sanctions on Moscow. “We all should be very worried, to be honest, I do share this assessment,” Michal Baranowski, director and senior fellow at the German Marshall Fund’s Warsaw Office, told CNBC when asked if Russia could be about to embark upon military action against Ukraine, describing Russia’s highly tense relationship with Ukraine as being a conflict “under the threshold of war.” “This assessment is shared by many here…

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RUSSIA PLAYS THE ANTISEMITIC CARD IN UKRAINE

Russia’s rage at and frustration with Ukraine has become very clearly visible. On October 11, former president and current Deputy Chairman of the Security Council, Dmitry Medvedev, published an expletive-laden article aimed at Ukraine and at President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, describing his country as a vassal state of the US with whom it is impossible to negotiate. He accused the Ukrainian people of losing their identity (which for him and his colleagues is Russian) and described Zelenskyy as disgusting, corrupt, and faithless, having repudiated his (Jewish) identity to serve rabid nationalists. This, Medvedev continued, meant Ukraine’s head of state resembled a Jewish Sonderkommando, a reference to those incarcerated Jews forced on…

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БАБИН ЯР І ГОЛОДОМОР

Якщо ви шукаєте Бабин Яр в Інтернеті через Google або інші пошукові системи, ви знайдете, по суті, таку інформацію: за два дні після Йом Кипура, 29-30 вересня 1941 року, нацисти вбили майже 34 000 євреїв. Увечері на Йом Кіпур, вони наказали київським євреям зібрати свої речі та цінності та прийти наступного ранку о 8 ранку у визначене місце. Іх доставили у Бабин Яр, наказали роздягнутися, розстріляли та спостерігали, як їхні бездиханні тіла падають у яр. Це було перше масове вбивство євреїв під час Голокосту. Хоча ця цифра, безперечно, вражає і, відверто кажучи, майже…

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BABYN YAR AND HOLODOMOR

If you look up Babyn Yar on the Internet through Google or other search engines you will come away essentially with the following information: in two days following Yom Kippur, September 29-30, 1941, the Nazis murdered almost 34,000 Jews. On the evening of Yom Kippur, they advised the Jews of Kyiv to collect their belongings and valuables and come the following morning at 8 AM to a designated place. On the following two days, they brought them to a ravine named Babyn Yar, told them to strip, shot them and watched as their lifeless bodies fell into the ravine. It was the first mass murder of Jews in the Holocaust. While that number is certainly astonishing and…

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RUSSIA MUST BE STOPPED IN UKRAINE

Over the past few weeks, the West has increasingly seen aspects of the full potential force of Russian aggression. These include a menacing military build-up on the Ukrainian border, the weaponization of the energy market against Moldova and support for Belarus’s hybrid warfare, using migrants along its border with the European Union. The lack of clarity in Moscow’s intentions, and the Kremlin’s unwillingness to comply with international law and agreements, only exacerbate the situation. An expansion of the kinetic conflict in Ukraine may not be in the cards, but Russia has put most of the pieces in place should it choose to do so. Given the ever more…

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ЗАВДАННЯ: «ПРИДБАТИ БАГАТО РІЧЕВНОГО МАТЕРІАЛУ ДЛЯ ОРГАНІЗАТОРІВ ПРОТЕСТІВ ПРОТИ ГОЛОДУ»

Напередодні Дня пам’яті жертв голодоморів в Україні, який цьогоріч відзначається 27 листопада, Служба зовнішньої розвідки України публікує низку матеріалів із архівних фондів про те, як українські емігрантські організації створювали комітети допомоги голодуючим, як представники розвідувальних структур УНР і ОУН добували інформацію про голод в Україні, збирали докази злочинів сталінського режиму, виготовляли листівки та іншу пропагандистську літературу, яку нелегально переправляли до УСРР, намагалися донести світові правду про стан справ на батьківщині і як…

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BIDEN'S DEMOCRACY SUMMIT MUST FOCUS ON RUSSIA

If President Joe Biden’s virtual Summit for Democracy on Dec. 9-10 is to be a serious endeavor, then it needs to spotlight the threat from Russia. Moscow methodically undermines democratic development by attacking the independence of its neighbors and subverting the United States and its allies. Current Kremlin offensives threaten to seize more Ukrainian territory, manufacture conflict between Poland and Belarus over the refugee standoff, and encourage conflict between Serbia and its neighbors in the Balkans. For democracy to prevail, each state’s national security and independence must be assured by directly challenging the foundations of the Putinist autocracy. A passive U.S. democracy policy with noble phrases and…

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CANADA AND INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY MUST DETER FURTHER RUSSIAN AGGRESSION AGAINST UKRAINE

The Ukrainian Canadian Congress (UCC) calls on the Government of Canada and the international community to take decisive steps in response to Russia’s escalation of aggression against Ukraine and increased Russian military movement near Ukraine’s borders. These military movements have been coupled with mistreatment and victimization of migrants by the Russian client regime in Belarus, and the purposeful destabilization of security at the EU’s border with Belarus. “For eight years Russia has waged a war of aggression against Ukraine, and is now again signalling a further invasion of sovereign…

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NATO CHIEF SIGNALS SUPPORT TO UKRAINE AMID RUSSIAN TROOP BUILDUP

NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg has assured Ukraine of the alliance’s backing amid what he called an “unusual concentration” of Russian forces in the area. Speaking at a press conference Nov. 15 in Brussels with Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, Stoltenberg said NATO members would continue to provide “significant political and practical support,” including military training, to Ukraine as the standoff continues. Ukrainian officials fear the current military context could foreshadow a repeat of Russian moves that led to Moscow’s annexation of Crimea in 2014. NATO and the…

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THE GATHERING STORM

December 8 marks the 30th anniversary of the collapse of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics – an event that Vladimir Putin believes was the “greatest geopolitical catastrophe of the century”. The Soviet empire controlled one-sixth of the world’s landmass but disintegrated after being humiliated in Afghanistan in 1989. This defeat led to unrest at home and most significantly an outright unilateral declaration of independence by its key “colony” Ukraine on August 24, 1991. A month later, the Baltic States seceded, and on December 8, 1991, President Boris Yeltsin formally dissolved the 15-member USSR. Russia’s European satellite states turned to…

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NORD STREAM 2: GERMANY HALTS APPROVAL OF RUSSIAN GAS LINK

The BBC reported, “Germany’s energy regulator has suspended the approval process for the controversial Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline from Russia to Germany. It said the pipeline’s operating company needed to be compliant with German law before it would certify the €10bn (£8.4bn) project. The decision sent UK and mainland Europe wholesale gas prices, already under pressure, to three-week highs. Critics fear the pipeline will increase Europe’s energy dependence on Russia. Russia’s state-owned Gazprom said the pipeline was ready in September, but it has been beset by delays. Running under the Baltic Sea, Nord Stream 2 will double Moscow’s gas exports to Germany, but it will also circumvent Ukraine, which relies on…

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RUSSIA’S ‘IRREGULAR WAR’ AGAINST NATO’S EASTERN FLANK MUST BE CONFRONTED

If you believe you are engaged in strategic competition while your adversary is engaged in a war against you, for all practical purposes you have already lost. This adage could well be applied to NATO as its leaders stare at the unfolding crisis along the alliance’s eastern border, with thousands of migrants from the Middle East and Central Asia herded by the Belarusian government and pushed to force their way into Lithuania, Latvia, and Poland. This crisis has been building for weeks now. Precious little attention was paid to it in Western media initially, perhaps because it was happening somewhere “out there” on the borders – to paraphrase a…

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ЯК ПРАЦЮЄ АНТИКОВІДНИЙ РУХ В УКРАЇНІ

Ще рік тому Сергій-Родослав Мікітен просто очолював ГО “Ведичний світ” та читав лекції про те, як досягати своїх цілей. Сам він себе називає спортсменом, журналістом-розслідувачем та правозахисником. Сергій часто брав участь у мітингах проти продажу землі та за несплату комунальних платежів. Публікував у себе в Facebook відео Шарія та матеріали онлайн-медіа Страна.ua. Не оминув плівки Деркача та інтерв’ю Давида Жванії про Майдан, на якому “людей використовували, як масовку для захоплення влади”. Проте з квітня 2020-го його риторика у Facebook змінилась. Тепер це…

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В РИМІ ВСТАНОВЛЕНО ПАМ’ЯТНУ ДОШКУ

14 листопада в папській базиліці Санта Марія Маджоре в Римі відбулося відкриття та освячення пам’ятної дошки українською мовою святим Кирилові та Методієві, творцям слов’янської писемності. Символ вдячності українського народу освятили Блаженніший Святослав, Глава і Отець УГКЦ, та кардинал Станіслав Рилько, настоятель базиліки. Захід розпочався Молебнем до Пресвятої Богородиці в головній каплиці базиліки, де зберігається чудотворна ікона «Salus Populi Romani» («Спасіння римського народу»). Перед початком богослужіння присутніх привітав кардинал Рилько, котрий у своєму слові наголосив на «історичному значенні події встановлення…

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UKRAINE WARNED OF ‘HIGH PROBABILITY’ OF RUSSIAN MILITARY ESCALATION THIS WINTER

Western intelligence suggests a “high probability of destabilisation” of Ukraine by Russia as soon as this winter after Moscow massed more than 90,000 troops at its border, according to Kyiv’s deputy defence minister. Hanna Maliar told the FT at the weekend that while interpretations of western intelligence “need further discussion”, they underlined “the high probability of escalation of the situation”. When asked if the risk of a Russian military aggression was higher than during the past years, she said: “Information of our [military intelligence services] coincides with the information of..

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IS RUSSIA ABOUT TO MAKE A 'SERIOUS MISTAKE' IN UKRAINE?

Russian military shifts and stinging Kremlin criticisms of Ukraine are raising questions about Moscow’s aims. In 2014, Russia’s seizure and annexation of Crimea and invasion of eastern Ukraine led to a strong Western response – a jump in military aid to Ukraine, a NATO buildup on its eastern flank, and unprecedented sanctions. What could be in store now? There are multiple reasons to be wary. On Nov. 1, POLITICO said satellite images showed a “buildup of armored units, tanks and self-propelled artillery” in Russia near Belarus, and a relocation of tanks from near Moscow to Ukraine’s border. President…

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WHY RUSSIA IS PUSHING FOR A NEW ROUND OF AGGRESSION AGAINST UKRAINE

A new wave of destabilization is looming over Ukraine, the one involving internal turbulence in all areas, provoked by outside forces. Today, the Ukrainian public is concerned over the latest reports of Russia’s unusual military activity near the border with Ukraine, while experts are trying to provide more or less adequate assessments of such actions on the part of the Kremlin and answer the question: “Will Vladimir Putin dare to openly invade?” To address this question, we need to find out, why the escalation is unfolding precisely now. After all, late last year, we all saw certain progress in terms of the promotion of peace initiatives put forward by President Volodymyr Zelensky and discussed the main result, which is saving human lives. So what went wrong? Until recently, the key issue for Russia and…

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HOW NATO CAN HELP UKRAINE DETER RUSSIAN AGGRESSION

Seven years after illegally annexing Crimea and launching a semi-covert proxy war in eastern Ukraine, Russia continues to hold Ukraine’s security hostage. Although Ukraine’s armed forces have held the line in occupied Donbas despite incessant Russian shelling and sniper attacks, deterrence has become increasingly tenuous during 2021. Since the spring, President Vladimir Putin has maintained 100,000 or more troops along Ukraine’s borders and in occupied Crimea, while the Russian navy has been aggressively challenging freedom of navigation in the Black and Azov Seas. Russia now also deploys significant ground forces in Belarus along Ukraine’s previously quiet northern border, as the…

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RUSSIA MOVES TO DISSOLVE MEMORIAL NGOS THAT DEFEND POLITICAL PRISONERS AND EXPOSE RUSSIAN AGGRESSION AGAINST UKRAINE

Russia has taken legal steps to get both the International Memorial Society and the Memorial Human Rights Centre forcibly dissolved. In both cases, alleged infringements of the notorious ‘foreign agents’ law are cited as the pretext, however the two organizations, which play a vital role in monitoring political and religious persecution in Russia and occupied Crimea, have long faced different forms of attack. The original reports, perhaps deliberately, only pertained to the International Memorial Society. This is one of Russia’s oldest NGOs and played an inestimable role in uncovering the crimes of the Soviet regime and information about victims of Stalin’s Terror. There are branches throughout the Russian Federation, as well as organizations like the Memorial Human Rights Centre, which are linked, but are…

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RUSSIAN TROOP MOVEMENTS SHOW WIDER CONFLICT IS POSSIBLE, TOP UKRAINE OFFICIAL SAYS

Ukrainian officials told Military Times that the gathering of Russian forces, tanks and short-range ballistic missile systems near the two countries’ border could offer the Russians an easy way to escalate an ongoing conflict. While U.S. military leaders remain reluctant to discuss the massing of Russian forces, Ukrainian officials were more direct. “All available information indicates that the armed forces of Russia permanently sustain a powerful offensive grouping around Ukraine,” Roman Mashovets, deputy head of Ukraine’s Office of the President for national security and defense, told Military Times on Wednesday. During the second half of 2021, Russian forces “conducted a set of large-scale command and staff exercises nearby the Ukrainian border,” Mashovets said. But after the completion of the exercises, “units and…

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VLAD’S EURO WAR

Today is Remembrance Day to commemorate the ending of the First World War, but let’s not forget that Russia has been at war with Europe for seven years, even though few choose to acknowledge that fact. Vladimir Putin’s strategy has been to conduct “hybrid wars” as well as “hot wars” to undermine the European Union (EU) and the sovereignty of all former Soviet satellite nations and republics. His agents and oligarchs operate in the shadows of Euro politics. They own luxury real estate, sports teams, newspapers, peerages, and politicians. They meddle in elections in support of anti-EU populists like France’s Marine Le Pen or Britain’s “Leave” side that pulled off Brexit. They have established a beachhead in Britain’s capital, otherwise known as Londongrad. They create dissension, divide societies and occasionally…

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RUSSIA IS BIDEN’S NEXT FOREIGN-POLICY TEST

While President Biden has been distracted by a climate-change conference and sagging approval at home, President Vladimir Putin is building up Russian forces along the Ukrainian border. The Biden administration must respond to this provocation and do what President Obama didn’t—deter Russian aggression against its Western neighbor—before it’s too late. Russia’s war against Ukraine started in 2014, when Russian forces invaded, seized the Crimean Peninsula, and occupied the eastern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk. Since then, Russian forces have carried out sporadic attacks against the Ukrainian military—using artillery barrages, drone strikes and…

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U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE

The following is the text of the U.S.-Ukraine Charter on Strategic Partnership signed by U.S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba in Washington, D.C. on November 10, 2021. Preamble The United States and Ukraine: Reaffirm the importance of our relationship as friends and strategic partners, based both on our shared values and common interests, including a commitment to a Europe that is whole, free, democratic, and at peace. Reiterate that the strategic partnership existing between our two nations is critical for the security of Ukraine and Europe as a whole. Underscore that our partnership is founded on…

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BLINKEN MEETS UKRAINE OFFICIAL, WARNS RUSSIA ON NATGAS SUPPLIES

The United States is watching for signs that Russia may be using energy as a political tool in Europe’s energy crunch, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said on Wednesday, adding that Washington was committed to take appropriate action, along with Germany, if Moscow were to take that path. Blinken and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba met at the State Department and signed a charter on a strategic partnership. Discussions focused on Ukraine’s neighbor, Russia, which Kuleba said was already using gas supplies as a weapon. Blinken said Washington was also concerned by reports of “unusual Russian military activity” near Russia’s border…

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BLINKEN WARNS PUTIN NOT TO ATTACK UKRAINE AS RUSSIA SENDS BOMBERS AMID BELARUS BORDER CRISIS

“We don’t have clarity into Moscow’s intentions, but we do know its playbook,” Blinken said Wednesday. “And our concern is that Russia may make the serious mistake of attempting to rehash what it undertook back in 2014, when it amassed forces along the border, crossed into sovereign Ukrainian territory, and did so claiming, falsely, that it was provoked.” Blinken issued that warning alongside Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, whom he hosted to jump-start the strategic dialogue derailed by the political interference controversy that led to former President Donald Trump’s first impeachment. President Joe Biden’s team has tried to stabilize U.S. relationships in Europe while prioritizing the intensifying rivalry with China, but Kuleba cautioned that Russia is playing “a very complicated game” that…

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CLOSING IN

As I close in on my seventieth birthday, I consider myself increasingly more introspective. I have been actively involved in the Ukrainian American community most of my life and have often wondered why so few of my eighth-grade classmates have been involved as I who attended St. George Ukrainian Catholic School which should have been a breeding ground for Ukrainian American community activists. But not so. Frankly of 120 classmates only a handful have come close to being community oriented. A recent bizarre and silly experience gave me reason to consider this question again. I was intent on contributing some of my greatly appreciated stock to a Ukrainian American foundation. I was advised that…

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РОЗДУМИ

Наближаючись до свого сімдесятиріччя, я вважаю себе все більш інтроспективним. Я активно займався українсько-американською громадою більшу частину свого життя і часто дивувався, чому так тільки декілька моїх однокласників з восьмого класу були залучені, оскільки я відвідував українсько-католицьку школу св. Юра, яка мала стати розсадником українсько-американських громадських активістів. Але не так. Чесно кажучи, із 120 однокласників лише небагато наблизилися до того, щоб бути орієнтованими на громаду. Недавній химерний і безглуздий досвід дав мені привід знову задуматися над цим питанням. Я мав намір внести частину моїх цінних акцій до українсько-американської фундації. Мені відповіли, що ця Фундація не має ємності для такого внеску..

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GERMANY: THE WEAK LINK IN THE TRANSATLANTIC COMMUNITY?

Germany should be a leader in countering the destabilization efforts of China and Russia. Yet the new German government could end up being the weak link in the transatlantic community. And, unfortunately, President Biden thus far looks more like an enabler for the downfall of dependable German leadership. The U.S. needs to be more than “back.” Not everything can be resolved in quick trips to Berlin, Paris, and Brussels. Washington must double down on strengthening bilateral relationships across Europe that can preserve a strong Atlantic community. Paris, as it is wont to do, has lately resumed its push for European “strategic autonomy,” particularly for…

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DE-OLIGARCHIZATION OF UKRAINE IS PRESIDENT ZELENSKYY’S TOP PRIORITY

The US-Ukraine Strategic Partnership Commission meets on November 9-10 in Washington. Established during the meeting of presidents Biden and Zelenskyy in September 2021, the Commission will ensure the bilateral US-Ukrainian relationship remains strong and that the US continues to support Ukraine as it works to fulfill its reform promise. One item that will not formally be a focus during this week’s meeting, but which is of critical joint US-Ukrainian interest, is President Zelenskyy’s de-oligarchization agenda. Broad-based reform efforts will only be successful in Ukraine if they are accompanied by a comprehensive de-oligarchization drive. For years…

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UKRAINE SEIZES ALLEGED 'CHIEF BUTCHER' FROM NOTORIOUS IZOLYATSIA ‘CONCENTRATION CAMP’ IN RUSSIAN-OCCUPIED DONETSK

The Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group (KHPG) reported, “According to Ukraine’s Security Service (SBU), the alleged head (or head ‘guard’) of the notorious Izolyatsia secret prison in occupied Donetsk was detained in the early hours of 9 November. The man was identified as Denis Kulikovsky, or ‘Palych’, by Stanislav Aseyev, Ukrainian writer and former Izolyatsia hostage, who has written in detail about both Palych and the forms of torture used against both men and women held prisoner at Izolyatsia. Aseyev referred to Kulikovsky as ‘the chief war criminal of Izolyatsia,’ adding, ‘I can now say that my life has not been lived in vain.’ The SBU did…

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UKRAINIAN LANGUAGE SLOWLY YET STEADILY DISPLACES RUSSIAN IN UKRAINE

Each year on 9 November Ukrainians hold the radio dictation of national unity. Media broadcast how a Ukrainian writer reads aloud selected difficult text in Ukrainian. People write it down and can submit for grammar check. Although symbolical participation, not competition is the main for this event, those who make zero mistakes can win prizes. This year the event was conducted by famous Ukrainian writer Yuriy Andrukhovych. Editor’s Note: On 9 November, Ukrainians celebrate the day of Ukrainian language and writing. It is celebrated since 1997, symbolically, on the day of Nestor the Chronicler, author of the most known chronicle of the…

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UCC STATEMENT ON END OF INDEPENDENT KYIV POST NEWSPAPER

The Ukrainian Canadian Congress (UCC) is concerned by the recent wholesale dismissal of Kyiv Post staff, signaling the effective closure of the independent Ukrainian newspaper. The announcement was made in a November 8 statement published by recently dismissed Kyiv Post staff. The statement reads, in part: We consider the cessation of publication and the dismissal of the paper’s staff to be an act of vengeance by Adnan Kivan. He has officially announced plans to ‘reorganize’ the Kyiv Post and to restart operations in a month with a new team. We see this as the owner getting rid of inconvenient, fair and honest journalists. […] We have exemplified high…

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ПОКЕРНИЙ СТІЛ РОСІЙСЬКО-УКРАЇНСЬКОЇ ВІЙНИ: ЧИ СПАСУЄ ЄВРОПА?

Курс на дестабілізацію Європи був обраний Кремлем далеко не вчора, і загроза з боку РФ з кожним роком лише зростає. Активізація НАТО на Східних кордонах з одного боку є позитивом у демонстрації власних спроможностей. Але з іншого – виклик Росією продемонстрував крихкість демократичної системи “країн-ланок” НАТО на прикладах таких країн, як Угорщина. У будь-якому разі, навіть сукупний ВПК країн Східної Європи не може зрівнятись з російським, що зараз на підйомі. Ще один факт – усі ці країни поступаються за військовими показниками Україні, і це навіть без урахування фактору унікального бойового досвіду, набутого за понад 7 років війни. Отже, єдиною…

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RUSSIA KEEPS GRIP ON EUROPE’S GAS MARKET DESPITE PUTIN’S PLEDGE

Russian President Vladimir Putin promised Europe more gas starting on Monday. So far, there are no signs the continent will get any relief. German gas orders via a key Russian pipeline signaled a very small increase in shipments on Monday, while no extra capacity to send additional supplies to Europe was booked in auctions on Sunday. That’s a disappointment for traders who had been counting on Gazprom PJSC to follow Putin’s orders to ease the continent’s supply crunch. Natural gas prices have more than tripled this year as Europe started the heating season with the lowest inventories in more than a decade. Russia had been keeping supplies capped, but traders were…

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U.S. SENATE COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN RELATIONS

U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, last week led Senators Rob Portman (R-Ohio), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) in introducing an amendment to the FY2022 National Defense Authorization Act to stop the Nord Stream 2 (NS2) pipeline project. The amendment imposes mandatory sanctions on Nord Stream 2 AG, the Kremlin-owned company in charge of Putin’s malign pipeline project. “For the third year in a row, a bipartisan majority in Congress has acted to stop the malign NS2 project. Since the Biden Administration refused to impose mandatory congressional sanctions on NS2 earlier this year, Russia has cut gas transit through Ukraine and amassed troops and military equipment on the…

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ПУТІНСЬКА ГАЗОВА ТАКТИКА

Німеччина, підтримуючи прокладення газопроводу через Східне море, потрапила в край невигідну позицію. Росія тепер використовує цю ситуацію. Німеччина змушена протидіяти – і здатна до такої дії. Такий висновок робить німецький журналіст Штефан Корнеліюс у мюнхенській газеті «Зюддойче цайтунг» від 9 листопада ц.р. Пропонуємо вашій увазі його – (тривожний і турботливий ) політичний коментар в українському перекладі. – Редакція. Як правило, проблеми не зменшуються, коли їх відкладають на пізніше. Вони ростуть. Такий міжнародний досвід стосується також найбільшої геополітичної проблеми, яка докучає…

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FRANCE AND GERMANY SEEM TO FORGET WHO’S BEHIND RUSSIA’S WAR ON UKRAINE

After witnessing nearly eight years of the Kremlin’s war on Ukraine, one would think the international community would be clear-eyed about what kind of a war is being waged in the Donbas region and who is responsible for it. France and Germany’s recent strange attempts at whataboutism, spurred by a Ukrainian drone strike last week, unfairly let Moscow off the hook for the conflict it keeps alive and kicking. For years now, the Kremlin has been waging a hybrid war against the United States and its partners — ranging from election interference and assassinating dissidents living in the West to fueling secessionist movements and the recent energy crisis in Europe. Russia’s war on Ukraine is the spearpoint of this campaign, and Washington’s efforts to counteract Moscow will be seriously weakened if its partners aren’t on…

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IRONY

he irony here is that Ukraine which cares little for its own citizens and not at all for the Ukrainians residing abroad now faces yet another challenge. The Polish government will soon challenge Ukraine’s treatment of Poles in Ukraine. The Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs is very different than Ukraine’s ministry of similar name and duty. It recently brought to the attention of a special committee on Poles abroad at the Polish parliament the alleged plight of Poles in Ukraine. The irony is palpable because Ukraine’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs will have to respond, not a novel circumstance but completely foreign to its own actions. Ukraine does not pay attention to the more unfortunate Ukrainians abroad. Surely, it welcomes one fourth of its state budget from Ukrainian laborers outside Ukraine helping their families by…

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CIA DIRECTOR DISPATCHED TO MOSCOW TO WARN RUSSIA OVER TROOP BUILDUP NEAR UKRAINE

President Joe Biden dispatched CIA Director Bill Burns to Moscow earlier this week to warn the Kremlin that the US is watching its buildup of troops near Ukraine’s border closely, and to attempt to determine what is motivating Russia’s actions. The rare trip by Burns to Russia, where he held talks with senior Kremlin security officials directly involved in the military activity, came as the US has grown increasingly concerned by Russia’s irregular movement of troops and equipment near Ukraine’s northern border, according to multiple US and Ukrainian sources briefed on the meeting. The Biden administration has ramped up its efforts in recent days to de-escalate growing tensions between…

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ІРОНІЯ

Іронія полягає в тому, що Україна, яка мало піклується про своїх громадян і зовсім не піклується про українців, які проживають за кордоном, тепер стикається з черговим викликом. Польський уряд незабаром оскаржуватиме ставлення України до поляків в Україні. Міністерство закордонних справ Польщі дуже відрізняється від міністерства України з аналогічною назвою та обов’язком. Нещодавно він привернув увагу спеціальної комісії з питань поляків за кордоном при польському парламенті про нібито тяжке становище поляків в Україні. Іронія відчутна, тому що Міністерству закордонних справ України доведеться реагувати, що не є новою обставиною, а абсолютно чужою для його власних дій. Україна не звертає уваги на…

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RUSSIAN MILITARY MANEUVERS NEAR UKRAINE ‘UNUSUAL,’ US WARNS

Satellite images released by Maxar Technologies and taken on Nov. 1, 2021, show tanks, armored personnel carriers and support equipment amid the presence of a large ground forces deployment on the northern edge of the town of Yelnya, Smolensk Oblast, Russia. The United States is keeping a close watch on Russian troop movements near the country’s border with Ukraine, describing the activity as “unusual.” “We continue to monitor this closely,” Pentagon press secretary John Kirby told reporters Friday, while calling on Moscow to publicly explain its intentions. “Without getting into greater detail right now, I think it’s really a matter of scale. It’s a matter of the size of the…

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ПОРУШЕННЯ ПРАВ ЛІДІЇ КОВАЛІВ-ДЕМАЙ З ЄКАТЕРИНБУРГУ

Гадаємо, немає необхідності представляти вам Лідію Ковалів (Демай) з Єкатеринбургу – одну з найактивніших на сьогодні діячок української діаспори в Росії, голову «Спілки українок Уралу», а також дописувачку сайту «Кобза – українці Росії». За ініціативою або безпосередньою участю цієї уродженки Львова, зокрема, тільки в цьому році, в умовах шаленої антиукраїнської риторики в РФ в Єкатеринбурзі були проведені свято «Щедрий вечір – Новий рік», святкування 30-річчя Незалежності України, а кількома місяцями раніше онлайн-фестиваль «Українська осінь на Уралі», до якого залучилися українці не тільки з Росії, а й з України та Казахстану. Така активність, вочевидь, і не…

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UKRAINE MPS FIGHT BACK AGAINST FAKE COVID VACCINATION CERTIFICATES

In recent months, Ukraine has experienced some of the world’s highest infection and death rates from the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Despite this rapidly deteriorating healthcare situation, Ukraine also has one of the lowest vaccination rates in Europe with only around 18% of the population fully vaccinated. A range of different Covid vaccines are currently available in Ukraine, but efforts to vaccinate the country have run into resistance from a strong anti-vaccination movement. This anti-vaccination sentiment reflects traditional Ukrainian distrust of authority rooted in decades of negative experience during the Soviet era. Alarmingly, the…

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WHAT WILL END RUSSIA’S FOREVER WAR IN UKRAINE?

Seven years after Russia’s occupation of eastern Ukraine, the West’s hopes for peace are ostentatiously ignored by Vladimir Putin. The eastern regions of Ukraine remain a warzone; Russia’s forces pepper Ukrainian lines with 120mm and 82mm mortars, small-arms fire, and light and heavy anti-tank grenades. Ukraine’s armed forces respond. Ukrainian servicemen continue to die (most recently on November 2), as the ceasefire and de-escalation agreements about the withdrawal of heavy weaponry are routinely ignored. On October 20, the Organization for the Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) announced that 22 tanks and 48 armored vehicles had been deployed inside the…

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UKRAINE INCHING CLOSER TO LAUNCH DIGITAL E-HRYVNIA

As the world’s economies are becoming tech-powered, banks realize that the future of money will be increasingly digital. To crack into this field, governments worldwide are mulling the launch of digital money backed and issued by state banks. Central bank digital currency, CBDC, is a virtual form of the country’s national currency represented by a digital code and held in a digital wallet. The electronic hryvnia might have many advantages, experts said. It promises faster and cheaper money transfers while reducing fraud and money laundering because digital payments are easier to identify and trace online, experts added. But the transparency of state-backed digital currency also raises privacy concerns as the state can record every hryvnia that citizens spend. The National Bank of Ukraine (NBU) would also…

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WEAPONS TRACING STUDY IMPLICATES RUSSIA IN UKRAINE CONFLICT

A study of weapons and ammunition used in the war in Ukraine shows that Russia has been systematically fanning the conflict with arms shipments, according to a new report funded by the European Union and the German government. The study is hardly the first to reach this conclusion: the United States and European countries have sanctioned Russia for years for arms transfers to separatist forces they say Moscow is supporting in Ukraine. But the study is one of the most comprehensive to date on the issue. While unlikely to change the overall picture, it offered a fine-grained view of illicit weapons transfers in Ukraine and illustrated the…

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UNFORTUNATE BUT INEVITABLE: MOLDOVA’S GAS SUPPLY AGREEMENT WITH THE KREMLIN AND GAZPROM

On October 29, Moscow and Chisinau agreed on a conditional resumption of Russian natural gas supplies to Moldova as of October 30. The Russian side had curtailed gas supplies to Moldova by one third in October, and threatened to discontinue the supplies altogether by December 1 (see EDM, October 28), compelling Moldova to accept Russia’s conditions for prolonging the multi-year contract. These conditions are designed to ensure Moldova’s continuing exclusive dependence on Gazprom. This, moreover, entails dependence on electricity generated in Transnistria with Gazprom’s gas nominally supplied (as heretofore) to Moldovagaz. Breaking out of…

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ZELENSKYY’S RECENT GOVERNMENT RESHUFFLE SHOWS NO STRATEGY

The Kyiv Post reported, “President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s loyalist, Yulia Svyrydenko, was the last of four ministers appointed by parliament on Nov. 4. Svyrydenko, the ex-deputy head of the President’s Office, became the 51st minister appointed since Zelenskyy took full control of parliament, following his Servant of the People party’s landslide victory in the 2019 parliamentary election. Customs Head Pavlo Ryabkin was appointed minister of strategic industries, Zelenskyy’s party lawmaker Iryna Vereshchuk became the minister for the reintegration of occupied territories and ex-Vice Prime Minister Oleksii Reznikov will now serve as the minister of…

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PUTIN’S UKRAINE WAR: RUSSIAN MP RECALLS EFFORTS TO PUSH CIVIL WAR MYTH

“Russia’s foreign minister accused Ukrainian leaders on Monday of trying to drag Moscow into the conflict in eastern Ukraine, following an escalation in fighting between government forces and rebels in the breakaway region.” The above text reads like a masterclass in Kremlin disinformation, but in fact it was published by international news agency Reuters on November 1, 2021, more than seven-and-a-half years since the onset of Russian military aggression against Ukraine. In its introductory sentence of just 33 words, the Reuters report manages to validate the Big Lie underpinning Putin’s Ukraine War, namely that the conflict is an exclusively Ukrainian internal affair and…

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БІДНА УКРАЇНСЬКА НАУКА

Відомий вчений філолог і літератор Юрій Шерех в одній статті про повість Юрія Косача закінчив такими словами, «пізніша поведнка письменника, якби до неї не ставитись. Не міняє оцінки його попередніх творів.» У мене замало знання про Юрія Косача. Знаю тільки що говорили мені старші друзі і батьки, що це більшовицький агент Про Юрія Шереха я дуже високої думки, навіть з особистих зустрічей а тим більше з його творчості. До речі він був кровним німцем але став найбільшим мабуть українським філологом. Тут одначе не можна стовідсотково годитися бо людина не змінюється на 180 відсотків. Просто треба брати під увагу цілий хід життєвий людини при оцінці її творчості. При цьому я хотів…

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BLACK SEA SECURITY: REVIVING US POLICY TOWARD THE REGION

Why the Black Sea region matters to the United States “Security and stability of the Black Sea are in the U.S. national interest and are critical to the security of NATO’s Eastern Flank…Russia’s destabilizing activities in and around the Black Sea reflect its ambitions to regain a dominant position in the region and to prevent the realization of a Europe that is whole, free, and at peace.” – US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin.1 As Secretary of Defense Austin said on his recent trip to Romania, Georgia, and Ukraine, stability in the Black Sea region (BSR) is in the national security interest of the United States. The US cannot afford to neglect key…

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UKRAINE’S GOVERNMENT APPROVES DEAL WITH UK TO BUY WARSHIPS, NAVAL EQUIPMENT

The Kyiv Post reported, “Ukraine’s government approved a draft agreement with the United Kingdom on taking out a billion-dollar loan to build up the nation’s navy. In the making since late 2020, the deal envisages a 1.25 billion pound ($1.6 billion), 10-year loan provided to Kyiv for procuring from Britain a number of warships, both new and used, as well as anti-ship missiles and equipment for naval bases. The government decree was signed by Ukraine’s Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal on Oct. 28. The vast effort titled Ukraine’s Naval Capabilities Enhancement Program (UNCEP) was launched in October 2020. Following a number of memorandums signed by the two governments, the U.K. is ready to build two brand new Protector P-5oU platform missile boats for Ukraine’s navy. Six more vessels of the class can be built in…

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SATELLITE IMAGES SHOW NEW RUSSIAN MILITARY BUILDUP NEAR UKRAINE

New commercial satellite photos taken on Monday confirm recent reports that Russia is once again massing troops and military equipment on the border with Ukraine after a major buildup this spring. The new images taken by Maxar Technologies and shared with POLITICO show a buildup of armored units, tanks and self-propelled artillery along with ground troops massing near the Russian town of Yelnya close to the border of Belarus. The units, which began moving in late September from other areas of Russia where they are normally based, include the elite 1st Guards Tank Army. Meanwhile, a new analysis by Jane’s on Monday reveals that equipment from Russia’s 4th Tank Division has been moved to areas around Bryansk and Kursk close to Ukraine’s northern border. The units are equipped with T-80U main battle…

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SENATORS BACK UKRAINE AGAINST RUSSIA FOLLOWING DRONE STRIKE

Russian President Vladimir Putin will provoke “sanctions from hell” if the frozen conflict in Ukraine turns hot, according to a prominent Republican. “I’m hoping that they understand that the Russian economy, as weak as it is, if they invade parts of Ukraine, it will get weaker,” South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham told the Washington Examiner. Graham, the top Republican on the Appropriations subcommittee that allocates State Department funding, issued that warning as tensions flare between Kyiv and Moscow. Ukrainian forces reportedly conducted an unprecedented drone strike against Russian-controlled artillery in eastern Ukraine, drawing renewed threats from Russia that coincided with reports of troop movements within western Russia that put Western officials on the watch for any ominous military buildup. France and…

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BAYRAKTAR DRONES IN DONBAS SKY

On 26 October, the Armed Forces of Ukraine used Turkish Bayraktar drones on the battlefield for the first time. After the positions of the 93rd brigade and the village of Hranitne, Volnovakha district, Donetsk region, had come under enemy howitzer fire, Armed Forces Commander-in-Chief Valery Zaluzhny ordered striking Russian 122mm howitzer positions with a drone, after which the shelling stopped. The German Federal Foreign Office expressed concern about the increase in the intensity of hostilities in eastern Ukraine, as well as the report by the Ukrainian Army’s General Staff that the Ukrainian Armed Forces had used a drone in response to artillery shelling, the killing of one soldier, and the wounding of another. Later, the same statement was made by the…

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КОМАНДУВАЧ ОС ОЛЕКСАНДР ПАВЛЮК: КОЛИ МИ ПОСТАВИМО НАШІ ПРАПОРИ НА КОРДОНІ – ЦЕ БУДЕ ПЕРЕМОГА

Він був командиром українських миротворчих військ у Косові (2006-2007). Саме там майбутній командувач ОС отримав перший досвід співпраці з підрозділами НАТО та помітив відчутну різницю у ставленні до особового складу. Учасник російсько-української війни. З 2017 по 2020 р. командував військами оперативного командування “Захід”. З 2020 року — командувач підготовки Командування Сухопутних військ ЗС України. 28 липня 2021 року призначений командувачем Об’єднаних сил. Ми продовжуємо серію інтерв’ю з представниками нової генерації українських військових, які вперше приймали присягу вже новітній Державі. Про російське озброєння у війні, протистояння гібридній агресії, допомогу Заходу, застосування “Байрактарів” та…

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UKRAINE GAS CHIEF URGES EUROPE TO RESIST RUSSIA PRESSURE ON NORD STREAM 2

Europe risks giving in to Russia if Germany approves the Nord Stream 2 pipeline as a condition for more gas supplies from Moscow, the head of Ukraine’s state energy company has said. Yuriy Vitrenko, chief executive of Naftogaz, said in an interview with the Financial Times that Russian president Vladimir Putin was using gas as a “geopolitical weapon” by insisting any extra supplies go via the $10bn pipeline, which bypasses Ukraine to supply Germany directly via the Baltic Sea. “If anyone has any doubts about it, then Putin is telling everyone to their face: ‘You allow NS2 to become operational or you won’t get any more gas’,” Vitrenko said. “He wants to reverse the clock and go back to the situation that…

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In July, President Joe Biden and German Chancellor Angela Merkel agreed to reimpose sanctions if Vladimir Putin used gas as a “geopolitical weapon.” This agreement constituted a concession in return for Biden’s waiver of sanctions on Nord Stream 2, which allowed its completion. Merkel had already vouched for continued gas deliveries through Ukraine — a questionable pledge from a politician leaving office. Despite these Biden-Merkel assurances, Putin’s Kremlin has engaged in undisguised blackmail to render Europe hostage to Russia’s gas monopoly, Gazprom. Putin’s blackmail aims to force the speedy certification of Gazprom’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline by delivering less gas to Europe. Putin’s ultimate goal: Destroy the European Union’s competitive and transparent energy market. Although Putin is using gas as…

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RUSSIAN TROOP MOVEMENTS NEAR UKRAINE BORDER PROMPT CONCERN IN U.S., EUROPE

The Washington Post reported, “A renewed buildup of Russian troops near the Ukrainian border has raised concern among some officials in the United States and Europe who are tracking what they consider irregular movements of equipment and personnel on Russia’s western flank. The officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to discuss the matter publicly, said the troop movements have reignited concerns that arose in April, when the largest buildup of troops by Russia near the Ukrainian border in years sparked an international outcry. The renewed movements of Russian forces in the area come as the Kremlin embraces a harder line on Ukraine. Russian officials from President Vladimir Putin on down have escalated their rhetoric in recent months, attacking Kyiv’s…

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WHEN WILL NON-OLIGARCHIC POLITICAL PARTIES FLOURISH IN UKRAINE?

Oligarchs are often regarded as the guardians of corruption within Ukraine’s political system. Over the years, they’ve entrenched themselves in nearly all aspects of the country’s economy and political life. Hopes for political renewal soared when new grassroots parties formed after the Euromaidan Revolution, yet most have now failed, while oligarchic political projects still persist in Ukraine. Why is this the case, and what needs to happen for the status quo to change? Ukraine’s current political and economic landscape formed under chaotic conditions after the collapse of the Soviet Union, when Ukraine rapidly transitioned from a planned economy into…

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U.S. AIR FORCE BOMBERS ARE REHEARSING THEIR NEW MAIN MISSION—SINKING RUSSIAN SHIPS

The U.S. Air Force’s 40-year-old B-1 bombers don’t have much time left. Worn out by the air campaigns over Iraq and Afghanistan, the B-1s are in line for replacement as the USAF’s new B-21 stealth bombers enter service over the next decade. But it’s clear what the B-1s will be doing in their final years—hauling stealthy anti-ship missiles to threaten enemy fleets. Dramatic exercises over the Black Sea in recent years have underscored the swing-wing bomber’s new maritime strike role. Four B-1s from the 7th Bomb Wing at Dyess Air Force Base in Texas in early October deployed to the Royal Air Force base at Fairford. In the pre-dawn…

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PROJECT FACTS

The following contains researched material made available to the Ukrainian community to swiftly counter cases of defamation and calumny against Ukraine and Ukrainians. “Project FACTS” Backgrounder: Conflicting Disinformation The Ukrainian Resistance/Liberation Movement led by the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) and the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) had been accused by both Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia of supporting the opposing side during World War II. FACTS: This conflicting disinformation that was promoted by Hitler’s and Stalin’s propaganda machines is reflected in countless documents of the time. To witness: Nazi accusation “Ukrainian people, take notice!…Moscow gives orders to the OUN! Moscow’s agents, who receive and carry out orders from bloodthirsty Stalin and…

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ТАМ І ТУТ

При одній недавній зустрічі з студентами Києво Могилянської Академії он лайн мене запитали про надання українським діяспорчанам подвійного громадянства. Я відповіві хіба не звичаєм представника діаспори, що я не бачу це важливою справою оскільки не розумію великої користі з такого для України чи для діаспори. Зрозуміло я свідомий що чимало представників діаспори, а зокрема провідних вважають це важливим питанням., правда при тому роблять різницю між діаспорами, мовляв тільки для діаспорчан котрі мають громадянство держав які дружать з Україною, але у жодному випадку не для тих хто мають громадянство держав агресорів проти України. Я пішов так далеко що висловився критично про представників діаспори які дуже сильно це пропихають, хоча…

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CONFUSION, DESTABILIZATION AND CHAOS: RUSSIA’S HYBRID WARFARE AGAINST CANADA AND ITS ALLIES

Operating in the shadows of the grey zone that lies between war and peace, Russia’s hybrid warfare aims to undermine targeted societies and democracies through a toxic mix of disinformation, cyber-attacks, transnational repression, economic pressure and the use of both regular and irregular military force. These operations are intended to support the Putin regime’s ultimate objectives: to erode Western alliances, re-consolidate Russia’s Soviet-era regional and global influence and remain in power as long as possible. The Russian government’s use of non-kinetic strategies and tactics to advance its interests and gain an advantage over its enemies is not…

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RUSSIA HAS LAUNCHED A CAMPAIGN IN UKRAINE AGAINST VACCINATION

According to the results of the analysis of the information field of the Telegram channels of Ukraine, the Center for Counteracting Disinformation of the National Security and Defense Council confirmed the information operation of the Russian Federation aimed at reducing the level of vaccination and increasing the number of deaths in Ukraine. Source: report of the National Security and Defense Council. Details: The report demonstrates how media outlets, such as social media and messengers, spread reports of alleged negative effects of vaccination. Emphasis is placed on the allegedly popular Ukrainian political Telegram channels related to the Russian Federation. They promote destructive narratives through both publications and bots in comments to…

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EUROPE MUST DEFEND ITSELF AGAINST VLADIMIR PUTIN’S ENERGY WEAPON

Russia’s role in Europe’s current gas crisis should be a wake-up call for Europeans who prefer to downplay the threat posed by Vladimir Putin’s revisionist regime. As the reality of Russian energy blackmail becomes more difficult to deny, calls are now mounting for the European Union to reduce its reliance on Russia and reassess its relationship with Moscow. In an address to the European Parliament in Strasbourg on October 20, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen warned that the European Union was “vulnerable” as it currently imports 90 percent of its gas, much of it from Russia. “Europe today is too reliant on gas and too dependent on gas imports,” the Commission President stated in a thinly veiled reference to Russia. Meanwhile, in a widely quoted interview…

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UKRAINE HAS RIGHT TO SELF-DEFENSE: UKRAINE’S AMBASSADOR TO GERMANY RESPONDS TO BERLIN’S “CONCERNS” OVER DRONE USE

“The German government’s criticism of the Ukrainian Army related to the recent first-time use of a Bayraktar TB2 strike drone in Donbas has led to diplomatic tensions between Kyiv and Berlin. The Ukrainian ambassador to Germany, Andrij Melnyk, firmly disagreed with Germany’s position on the issue in a comment to Bild. ‘The Ukrainian side firmly rejects today’s warning from the Foreign Office,’ Melnyk told the newspaper. Ukraine has ‘the legitimate right to self-defense if its territory is bombarded day and night with heavy Russian weapons and if civilians and soldiers are killed.’ For this reason, Ukraine for its part ‘calls on the German government, instead of expressing concern about the dramatic situation in the occupied territories, to redouble its efforts as a mediator in order to convene a Normandy Four…

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UKRAINE CONDUCTS AIRSTRIKE WITH BAYRAKTAR TB2 ARMED DRONE FOR FIRST TIME

Ukrainian Armed Forces have employed the Bayraktar TB2 armed drone for the first time in combat, Mil.in.ua reported Tuesday. Citing a report from volunteer Roman Donik, Mil.in.ua reported that Turkish-made Bayraktar TB2 armed drones were used for the first time to destroy enemy artillery that fired on the village of Granitne, after which the Russian-backed separatists announced the alleged liberation by the Ukrainian Armed Forces of the village of Staromaryivka. The Bayraktar TB2 managed to find, track and destroy a 122mm D-30 howitzer south of occupied Boykivske (formerly called Telmanovo). The howitzer had been responsible for the attacks against the village of Granitne. Roman Donik noted that it was decided to use Ukrainian armed drones to strike from…

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DUTCH COURT: CRIMEAN TREASURES MUST BE SENT TO UKRAINE

An Amsterdam appeals court ruled Tuesday that a trove of historical treasures from Crimea that have been stored for years at a Dutch museum must be given to Ukraine, saying they are “part of the cultural heritage of the Ukrainian state.” The judgment, which can be appealed to the Dutch Supreme Court, upheld a lower court’s ruling and was the latest development in a protracted legal tug-of-war about the fate of the artifacts that stems from Russia’s annexation of Crimea. Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine in 2014, a month after the Allard Pierson Museum opened the “Crimea — Gold and secrets of the Black Sea” exhibition, sparking a dispute over where the borrowed treasures should be returned to. The exhibits have been stored in Amsterdam pending resolution of the dispute. Nearly five…

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EUROPE MUST FACE UP TO THE CHILLING REALITY OF PUTIN’S ENERGY BLACKMAIL

As Europe watches in sheer disbelief while gas prices spiral out of control amid mounting suspicions of Russian energy blackmail, the Kremlin appears to have set its sights on two much-coveted geopolitical prizes. The first has been widely reported in the mainstream media and focuses on Moscow’s efforts to pressure EU officials into approving the controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline by limiting supplies to Europe. Many of those who initially doubted the Kremlin’s intentions have since had second thoughts when president Vladimir Putin himself recently suggested his country could send 10% more gas to Europe once Nord Stream 2 is approved. The…

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UKRAINE SEEKS ROLE IN GERMAN CERTIFICATION OF PUTIN’S PIPELINE

Germany’s Federal Network Agency, BnetzA, announced on 8 September that Nord Stream 2 AG (NS2AG) had submitted a complete application for certification. This marked the starting date for the process to certify Vladimir Putin’s geopolitically sensitive pipeline project. According to the EU’s Gas Directive, BNetzA has four months from the receipt of a complete application to prepare a draft decision. Concurrently, the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy has three months to provide its assessment to BNetzA on the impact of the NS2 pipeline on the security of supply to the market. A market assessment by the Ministry is expected by…

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EXCLUSIVE FRONT-LINE REPORT: MODERN TRENCH WARFARE IN EASTERN UKRAINE

The Ukrainian soldier warns me to speak no louder than a whisper. The enemy lines are less than 50 meters away, he tells me, and my voice — if too loud — can easily carry across no man’s land and invite gunfire from the other side. “We see each other, and we shoot at each other every day,” says the soldier, whose name is Mykhailo. “Everyone is afraid, we are afraid, and the Russians are afraid of us.” We’re standing at one end of a ruined factory on the outskirts of the city of Avdiivka in Ukraine’s eastern war zone. Ukrainian soldiers seized the building in a bloody 2017 battle that involved close-quarters combat. On this day in October, the war-ravaged structure…

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NOW EUROPE KNOWS WHAT RUSSIA’S “GAS BLACKMAIL” IS

Ukrinform reported, “This year, Europe has learned what the Russian policy is of ‘gas blackmail.’ That’s according to Lana Zerkal, an adviser to the Minister of Energy of Ukraine, who spoke in an interview with RFE/RL’s Ukrainian service. She stressed that the current situation in the gas market is ‘painful for everyone.’ In Europe, prices for the ‘energy basket,’ which includes coal, oil, and gas, have risen by 95%. So now everyone feels what it is. And this will even affect the UN summit, scheduled for later this month, which will be devoted to climate change. That’s because, even though everyone wants to achieve zero emissions by 2050, say, Britain is now returning to coal generation and mothballed stations are being reopened to ensure heating to residents,’ said Zerkal. According to the official, Ukraine has…

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RUSSIA FEARS COMPLICATE NATO’S NEW CHINA FOCUS

One of U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin’s top jobs at the NATO ministerial conference this week was to keep steering the 30-member alliance’s focus to China, but some Eastern European allies say the U.S.-China rivalry must not overshadow concerns about Russia. The two-day meeting between defense chiefs yielded new agreements on tech investments and policies, mirroring the Pentagon’s focus on technological competition with China. When asked by reporters about China, Austin made clear the U.S. sees NATO as its ace. “Regarding China, let me just say that alliances like NATO are one of our greatest strengths. No other country enjoys the…

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RUSSIA IN REVIEW: OCTOBER 7-21, 2021

The Kremlin advanced two key lines of effort to increase Russian influence globally at the 2021 Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (CICA) ministerial summit—leveraging international organizations and expanding Russian cyber capabilities and influence. The CICA is an inter-governmental forum of 27 Asian and Eurasian member states founded in 1992 to enhance cooperation and promote security and stability in Asia.[1] CICA held the 2021 iteration of its biannual conference in Nur-Sultan, Kazakhstan, on October 12. Russian negotiators at CICA advanced the Kremlin’s campaign to develop a network of Russia-amenable international organizations. The Kremlin seeks to cultivate a network of coalitions and international organizations to amplify Russia’s limited power, diversify…

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JAILED RFE/RL JOURNALIST APPEALS TO BIDEN FOR HELP TO FREE MORE THAN 100 POLITICAL PRISONERS IN RUSSIAN-OCCUPIED CRIMEA

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) reported, “Imprisoned RFE/RL freelance correspondent Vladyslav Yesypenko has appealed to U.S. President Joe Biden and U.S. lawmakers to do more to free the more than 100 political prisoners detained by Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) over their activities in Crimea. Yesypenko, who has been in detention in Russian-occupied Crimea since March, made the appeal in a letter read publicly for the first time on October 21 at the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington. ‘There can be no greater hell than being trapped in these four walls day after day, month after month, for half a year now, only allowed outside on command for a few breaths of fresh air and then back to your cell, helpless to change a thing,’ Yesypenko said. He called on Biden and…

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THE BATTLE FOR HISTORY AND BUILDING OF IDENTITY: FAKE NEWS CONFRONTS PROFESSIONAL NEWS

The expert community in the West does not seem critical enough towards the phenomenon of Russian imperialism. Here, one should mention the strong traditions of Russo/Soviet-philia, which are often based on dirty Russian money, an interest in the Byzantine tradition, love of Russian ballet, in particular the music of Ukrainian Petro Tchaikovskyi, Russian literature, in particular the works of Ukrainian Mykola Gogol, and approval of Putinism as a special civilizational path. The “battle for history” thesis (fundamental to the politics of memory) is unacceptable to professional historians because its subjective approach diverges from their prime task of…

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UKRAINIAN HELSINKI UNION AND RUKH

Gorbachev’s introduction of perestroika and glasnost were probably the two decisions that began, what I call, The Great Unwind, a description unlike the usual depiction of the end of the USSR as a sudden collapse. The end did not happen in a day, a week or even a month. I have often wondered if Gorbachev ever read Macbeth – The Witches Chant – Double, double, toil and trouble – the double, double of glasnost and perestroika did indeed lead to toil and trouble for Gorbachev, despite his best intentions. But while major policy decisions in Moscow were being made in the mid-1980s, most people throughout Soviet Ukraine at the time were neither fully aware…

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CENTURIES LATER, RUSSIA STILL CLAIMS UKRAINE’S CULTURAL, SCIENTIFIC HERITAGE

At first glance, there was nothing unusual about the September presentation of the logo for the 2023 Ice Hockey World Championship planned to be held in Russia. Several top officials of the Russian Ice Hockey Federation entered the stage a moment before the bright red curtain opened and the audience could see the new emblem for the first time. “The logo of the 2023 Championship was created as a tribute to the glorious Russian traditions in art and ice hockey,” the event’s host said. “It was inspired by the Russian avant-garde.” Except it wasn’t. The team used a fragment from the “Sportsmen” painting by Kazimir Malevich, the iconic Kyiv-born artist of Ukrainian and Polish origin. “A man who was born in Ukraine and had a vast amount of his…

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NOW IS THE MOMENT TO TRANSFORM UKRAINE

With the support of President Zelenskyy, Ukraine is on the verge of enacting a fundamental reform that has been thirty years in the making. Ukraine’s new judicial reform laws, which recently passed the Verkhovna Rada, have the potential not only to build a judiciary that is trusted by Ukrainians by holding corrupt judges to account, but also to reduce the influence of vested interests who use the current system to undermine rule of law in Ukraine for their own personal benefit. While passage of the laws was an enormous achievement, implementation of the actual reforms, including the “integrity checks” of judicial body members, must now take place. This is a daunting challenge that requires political courage and determination in the face of powerful opposition from vested interests. It is courage tha…

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RUSSIA’S NEIGHBORS HAVE MORE LEVERAGE THAN THEY THINK

If the Belarus opposition had won the Nobel Peace Prize, as some thought it might, anti-government protests could have again engulfed Minsk and heightened anti-Kremlin sentiments. This scenario underscores the complexities Russia faces in seeking to influence or dominate post-Soviet neighbors. Despite their three decades of independence, the Kremlin seems to view neighbors as less than fully sovereign. Talk of “red lines“ implies that Moscow may use force to seek to prevent neighbors from someday joining NATO or the European Union. The post-Cold War vision of Europe open, free, and at peace has been put in abeyance by Russia’s wars with…

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UKRAINE WELCOMES AUSTIN BUT CALLS FOR AIR DEFENSE AND VOCAL SUPPORT TO JOIN NATO

Laying a wreath for fallen Ukrainian soldiers in the ongoing war with Russia, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III in Kyiv on Oct. 19 voiced support for the 30-year-old democracy, but Ukraine security experts say the Biden administration naively falls short and leaves Ukraine open to Russian invasion. “I want to commend Ukraine’s brave men and women in uniform, who continue to stand up to defend our shared values and our core democratic principles,” Austin said at the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense, where DOD officials have helped the largest democracy in Eastern Europe strengthen its military institutions and doctrine. “The United States calls on Russia to end its occupation of Crimea, to stop perpetuating the war in eastern Ukraine, to end its destabilizing activities in the Black Sea and…

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BRITAIN IN TALKS WITH UKRAINE TO SELL MISSILES

Britain is in discussions with Ukraine to sell it weapons for the first time amid concerns that Russia could exploit the gas crisis to seize territory. Under the plans, Britain would provide surface-to-surface missiles for Ukrainian patrol boats and missiles for aircraft as the nations increase co-operation after Brexit. The Ministry of Defence is discussing the sale of surface-to-surface maritime Brimstone missiles designed by MBDA UK that can hit “swarms” of targets simultaneously and would be deployed on vessels that the Ukrainian navy has in service. The proposals come amid anxiety in the Ukrainian defence ministry that Russia could try to exploit the gas crisis to seize more of its territory. A Ukrainian diplomat told The Times that any escalation in fighting between Russia and Ukraine would have “unpredictable…

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ТЕНДЕНЦІЇ ПОРУШЕНЬ ПРАВ ЛЮДИНИ В ОКУПОВАНОМУ КРИМУ ЗАЛИШАЮТЬСЯ НЕЗМІННИМИ – ЗВІТ КРЦ ЗА 9 МІСЯЦІВ 2021 РОКУ

У п’ятницю, 22 жовтня, Кримськотатарський Ресурсний Центр представив аналіз порушень прав людини в окупованому Криму за 9 місяців 2021 року. За даними організації, за звітний період російські силовики провели 46 обшуків, 238 затримань/утримань і 238 допитів, опитувань і «бесід». Загальна кількість арештів за 9 місяців поточного року становить 147. Велика частина порушень з боку окупантів припадає на представників корінного кримськотатарського народу. Така практика набула на півострові системний характер. У пресконференції взяли участь Голова Правління Кримськотатарського Ресурсного Центру, голова управління з правових питань та закордонних справ Меджлісу…

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HRYHORIY HALAHAN: UKRAINE IS BECOMING AN EQUAL PARTNER FOR NATO MEMBER STATES

Commander of the Special Operations Forces Hryhoriy Halahan is an outstanding example of a new generation of Ukrainian commanders who took oath in times of Ukraine’s independence and have a qualitatively different mindset. From 2002 to 2014, Hryhoriy Anatoliyovych served at the SSU Center for Special Operations “Alpha” in Simferopol and was one of 10% of Crimean SSU officers who did not betray the oath with the onslaught of the occupation of the peninsula. He survived the Russian-Ukrainian war, was awarded the Order of Courage of the 3rd degree and the Order of Bohdan Khmelnytsky of the 3rd degree. In August 2020, Hryhoriy Halahan was…

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U.S., UKRAINE AIM TO IMPLEMENT STRATEGIC DEFENSE FRAMEWORK

The US Department of Defense reported on October 19, “Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III met with Ukrainian leaders in the capital city of Kyiv to strengthen ties between the nations and look for ways to implement the Strategic Defense Framework that was signed at the end of August. Austin assured Defense Minister Andriy Taran that U.S. support for Ukraine’s territorial integrity and sovereignty is unwavering. Later in the day, Austin is scheduled to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. The strategic defense framework provides the…

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UKRAINE DEFENSE MINISTER: DON’T COMPARE US TO AFGHANISTAN

Ukraine’s defense minister fired back Tuesday at Russian predictions that the U.S., in light of its rushed exit from Afghanistan, will eventually abandon Ukraine. “I’m not going to compare relations between the U.S. and Ukraine with relations between the U.S. and Afghanistan,” Andriy Taran said. “Ukraine is a country that fights for its own independence and territorial integrity. We have no doubt of the support from our strategic partner.” “The U.S. understands the importance of our fight, the fight of Ukraine for its independence, for the deterrence of Russian aggression,” he added. Taran’s defiant comments came…

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‘OPEN DOOR TO NATO’ FOR GEORGIA, UKRAINE AS PENTAGON CHIEF AUSTIN VISITS EASTERN EUROPE

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin will stress this week that there is an “open door to NATO” for Ukraine and Georgia, the two nations on the front lines of Russian aggression, Pentagon officials said over the weekend. Mr. Austin will visit those two countries and Romania in the coming days before traveling to Brussels for a meeting of NATO defense ministers. Pentagon officials cast the trip as a clear signal to Moscow that the U.S. and its NATO allies stand firmly behind Ukrainian and Georgian sovereignty in the face of Russian provocations and military expansion over the past decade. “We are reassuring and reinforcing the sovereignty of countries that are on the front lines of Russian aggression,” a senior defense official said. Russian forces occupy pieces of…

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RUSSIA IS POURING MILLIONS INTO KREMLIN PROPAGANDA TARGETING THE U.S.

Russian media outlets reported spending more than $146 million on foreign influence operations and propaganda in the U.S. since 2016, with over $16 million on propaganda targeting the U.S. in 2021, OpenSecrets’ analysis of new Foreign Agents Registration Act records shows. And that’s just the spending that Russian foreign agents have disclosed to the Justice Department under FARA. The U.S. government has identified multiple online media sites that are directed by Russian intelligence services and not disclosed through FARA, spreading disinformation to undermine COVID-19 vaccines produced outside…

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PUTIN‘S BRUTAL LETTER TO UKRAINE UNDER MEDVEDEV’S BYLINE

The Kremlin has published an open letter to and about Ukraine, replete with insults and threats. An official public document in such a style seemed inconceivable in contemporary international relations, but the Kremlin has turned the inconceivable into fact with this letter. Published in the Moscow daily Kommersant (“Why It Is Senseless to Deal with the Current Ukrainian Leadership,” Kommersant, October 11) and amply rebroadcast by Russia’s media, the letter carries the byline of Russian Security Council’s Deputy Chairman (and former president and prime minister) Dmitry Medvedev. However, hardly anyone in Ukraine, Russia or the West would doubt that President (and Security Council Chairman) Vladimir Putin is this letter’s actual sender. The Kremlin is targeting three main audiences with this…

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СТАЛІНСЬКА "БОРОТЬБА З БАНДИТИЗМОМ". РАУНД ПЕРШИЙ: 1944

Рік 1944-й став поворотним у відносинах між українським визвольним рухом та комуністичним тоталітарним режимом. Нарешті два безкомпромісні супротивники зійшлися у відкритому двобої. Червона армія в січні — березні 1944 року вигнала нацистських окупантів з Рівненської та більшої частини Волинської областей, зайняла міста Рівне й Луцьк. До середини квітня німецький Вермахт залишив Буковину, половину Тернопільщини включно з обласним центром й Покуття. Лінія фронту стабілізувалася до липня 1944 року, а на схід від неї повернулася радянська влада. Тож поки підрозділи угруповання УПА-Захід продовжували боротьбу в тилу…

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MOSCOW HUMAN RIGHTS GROUP STORMED DURING HOLODOMOR FILM SCREENING

A group of masked men stormed the offices of a renowned human rights organization in Moscow on Thursday evening to disrupt the screening of a film about the Holodomor — a brutal famine, widely recognized as man-made, which killed millions of peasants in Soviet Ukraine during the 1930s. Witnesses filmed around 30 unknown individuals barging into the office of Memorial, a group which documents Soviet-era repressions and victims of Josef Stalin’s Great Terror, shouting “fascists,” “shame” and telling viewers to leave because “the screening is over.” When police later appeared, they handcuffed the entrance doors to Memorial’s office and locked its staff and attendees inside for several hours, the group’s lawyer said. They also dismantled the…

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RUSSIA THROWS TANTRUM OVER ‘CRAZY’ AMERICAN WOMEN IN GOVERNMENT

On Tuesday, talks between Undersecretary of State Victoria Nuland and Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov ended with a dramatic threat to potentially shutter all Russian diplomatic missions if the U.S. didn’t lift all sanctions against Moscow. Nuland’s response? A resounding “Nyet,” much to Ryabkov’s dismay. But Russia’s attitude towards Nuland goes beyond her politics: Apparently, Moscow’s misogynists would rather not deal with a woman at all. Russian state media led the charge in covering Nuland as the subject of a “Fashion Police” segment, as opposed to a U.S. government official who…

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ПЕЧАТКУ МАЗЕПИ ТА КНИГУ, ЗАСНОВАНУ НА РЕАЛЬНИХ ПОДІЯХ, ПРЕДСТАВИЛИ У БАТУРИНІ

Книгу “Мазепа. Хроніка православного шляхтича. Руїна” Тетяни Таїрової-Яковлєвої вперше представили у Батурині. Книга художня, однак всі події, зображені в ній, відбувались насправді. Авторка – російська професорка і, щоб досліджувати історію України, вивчила українську. Вважає, що подання історії в художньому вигляді допоможе їй краще донести до людей те, чим живе сама останні 18 років. “Мені дійсно здається, що набагато більше читачів можуть прочитати художній твір, ніж історичне дослідження. А я хочу розповісти про цю історію, про цю добу, яку дуже добре знаю, якою я, дійсно, захоплююсь”, – говорить професорка, авторка книги Тетяна Таїрова-Яковлєва. Книга вийшла накладом у три…

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THE RUSSIAN QUESTION

The Russian question, understood as a set of problems facing the Russian nation during and after the disintegration of the Soviet Union, was first placed on the public agenda by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Russia’s best-known author of the second half of the twentieth century, in a series of essays published between 1990 and 2008. One of those works, The Russian Question at the End of the Twentieth Century (1994), includes a survey of Russian history from the era of Kyivan Rus´ to the first post-­Soviet years. The Russian question, according to Solzhenitsyn, was really about the survival of the Russian nation. He discerned threats from various quarters, including…

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MEDVEDEV ECHOES PUTIN’S DANGEROUS UKRAINE OBSESSION

The new pastime of the Russian elite appears to be penning abusive essays about Ukraine. Russian President Vladimir Putin set the tone in summer 2021 with a 5000-word epic that questioned the legitimacy of Ukraine’s borders and laid bare his own imperial ambitions. Former Russian president and prime minister Dmitry Medvedev has now published a Ukraine hit piece of his own. While significantly shorter than Putin’s effort, this latest text is arguably even more poisonous. Writing in Russian daily Kommersant on October 11, Medvedev outlined five reasons why he believes it is “meaningless” to engage in talks with the current Ukrainian authorities. He did so…

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КОНФЕРЕНЦІЯ ВШАНУВАННЯ ЗАХИСНИКА УКРАЇНИ

Конференція вшанування захисника України при Постійному представництві України до ООН – Україна не є ані українською ані християнською державою Ця конференція відбулася он лайн на День Покрови або День захисника України як тепер деякі говорять за указом ще Президента Порошенка. Під темою її було участь жіноцтва у збройних та силових структурах України. Висновок, що ця участь росте, сьогодні майже одна третина всіх становлять жінки. Майже усі виступаючі були жінки з України. Одначе провадив конференцію таки мужчина. А перше і останнє слово надалось також мужчині. Ось щодо останнього здалось б жіночої зміни…

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WILL UKRAINE SURVIVE AS AN INDEPENDENT STATE?

Recently, Ukraine celebrated its 30th anniversary of independence from the Soviet Union, the modern incarnation of the centuries-old Russian Empire. Some still may argue that Ukraine got its independence accidentally due to a ‘perfect storm’ created by several unfortunate events or Nassim Taleb’s famous ‘black swans,’ which contributed to the Soviet Empire’s collapse. At first glance, such an explanation seems plausible, but the reality is more complex. The origins of today’s Ukraine could be found in Rus, the first polity which existed on its territory in early medieval times. However, from the…

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CLIMATE OF STRATEGIC VULNERABILITY

Amid a border surge, pandemic and inflation, here’s one problem that isn’t (yet) weighing on the U.S. political system: an energy crisis. In Europe energy prices have risen by a factor of five in the last year, and Vladimir Putin is exploiting the situation for Russia’s gain. It’s a reminder that America’s energy production is a source of strategic strength that it risks trading away for climate dreams. Europe’s energy system, which has sought to banish domestic fossil fuels, has left the Continent vulnerable to the global surge in oil and gas prices. The Financial Times reports that “the strength of the wind blowing across northern Europe has fallen by as much as 15 per cent” in 2021. That’s reduced the productivity of European wind farms and increased reliance…

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EU, UKRAINE TO DISCUSS MILITARY TRAINING AND CYBERTHREATS

The European Union is considering providing a military training mission to Ukraine amid lingering tensions between Russia and its neighbor, officials said Monday. Acting on a request from Ukraine for help with “professional military education,” the EU sent a fact-finding mission to the country last month. The topic will be discussed during a summit Tuesday in Kyiv, the officials said on condition of anonymity in accordance with EU practices. The results of the mission have yet to be analyzed in order to define how the 27-nation bloc could best help. One official said the EU’s political and security committee, which…

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ARREST WARRANT ISSUED FOR KREMLIN-FRIENDLY MP MEDVEDCHUK, BAIL SET AT $38 MILLION

Ukraine’s top prosecutor on Oct. 11 authorized the arrest of pro-Kremlin lawmaker Viktor Medvedchuk unless he can post bail of Hr 1 billion (about $38 million). Renat Kuzmin, a fellow MP from Medvedchuk’s 44-member Opposition Platform – For Life faction, published the State Investigation Bureau warrant for Medvedchuk’s arrest. On Oct. 8, Medvedchuk was charged with terrorism and a second count of high treason. Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova accused the lawmaker of sabotaging Ukraine’s energy independence. Medvedchuk is already under house arrest as he awaits to be tried on a previous treason charge. The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) said that…

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HELP UKRAINE OR RISK AN AMERICAN WATERLOO

America’s inglorious departure from Afghanistan is a coup for Russia and China. Their schadenfreude is almost tangible, as their propaganda outlets trumpet the implosion of America’s resolve and the global “failure of democracy.” Each has a target in mind where it feels the conditions are ripe to exploit U.S. weakness: Ukraine and Taiwan are now in the crosshairs. And yet, a moment of such clarity presents opportunities. Ukraine provides a fulcrum for the redemption of America’s deterrence credibility. Russia aside, the U.S. failure of resolve on Ukraine thus far is also encouraging China to threaten an…

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EUROPE’S ENERGY CRISIS HIGHLIGHTS DANGERS OF RELIANCE ON RUSSIA

Europe is currently in the grip of an unfolding energy crisis that is sparking questions over the role of Vladimir Putin’s Russia in exploiting rising demand, low supply, and geopolitical unpredictability. It is difficult to exaggerate the gravity of the present situation. Natural gas prices have soared by 600% so far this year. This extreme market volatility is hitting key economic areas across Europe, from fertilizer plants to the food industry and health sector. The crisis has been building for some time. It is being driven by a mixture of rising post-Covid demand, weather-related events, glitches at gas production plants across the world, and…

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FRENCH-RUSSIAN EXHIBITION IN MOSCOW DISPLAYS ANNA OF KYIV’S GOSPEL AS A RUSSIAN HISTORICAL ARTIFACT

An exhibition dedicated to Russian-French cultural relations was opened in Moscow on September 17, 2021. Among many historical objects lies the famous Gospel of Reims. Historians associate this outstanding manuscript dating from the Kyivan Rus era with the daughter of Kyiv Prince Yaroslav the Wise – Anna, who became the Queen of France. It is important to note that this ancient manuscript is presented as a written legacy of Russian history. Grand exhibition and covert propaganda The exhibition, entitled France and Russia: ten centuries together, opened on September 17 in the Moscow Kremlin Museums and will last until January 2022. Many prominent museums were involved in this…

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UKRAINIAN SOLDIERS BEAR THE INVISIBLE SCARS OF WAR

Volodymyr, a 49-year-old contract soldier, is sitting between two raucous tables of young people in a trendy Kyiv pub. It is his day off; the late afternoon sun streams through the windows and across his hulking frame as he orders a juice from the menu. He is a man of few words, but when he does speak, he does so with intensity, staring directly at you with his close-set light blue eyes. Volodymyr is teetotal, just one example of the self-control he developed during a life of hardship, including a brutal Soviet military service in his youth that saw him routinely physically and verbally assaulted for…

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INTERNATIONAL LAW AT THE UKRAINIAN FREE UNIVERSITY

This piece in written on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Ukrainian Free University, today located in Munich, but originally in Vienna, then Prague and in Munich only after the Second World War. The history of this remarkable institution has been written many times and by many authors, mostly in Ukrainian. My purpose is not to reiterate, but to offer a glimpse into its contribution into the legal realm of International Law. The Ukrainian Free University (UFU) is proud of its long history and rightfully so. It remains today a European institution of higher education and a centre of Ukrainian scholarship. The focus has not…

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KGB ARCHIVES SHOW HOW CHRYSTIA FREELAND DREW THE IRE (AND RESPECT) OF SOVIET INTELLIGENCE SERVICES

The Soviet Union’s secret police, the infamous KGB, praised her savvy and erudition, even as she frustrated their attempts to spy on her in Cold War Ukraine. They tagged her with the code name Frida. But today we know Chrystia Freeland as Canada’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance. Ms. Freeland’s ties to Ukraine are no secret, but materials uncovered from the KGB archives in Kyiv illuminate her role in the Ukrainian independence movement while on exchange there from Harvard University. In the former Soviet republic – now Moscow’s antagonist – access to information on the…

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UKRAINIAN GAS CHIEF ACCUSES MOSCOW OF BLACKMAIL OVER ENERGY SUPPLIES

For a few hours on Wednesday, it wasn’t exactly clear who was in charge. Following a day of soaring gas futures, Europe’s notional leader, Ursula Von der Leyen, expressed anger and frustration at the uncontrollable numbers. Mr Putin, on the other hand, tamed them almost immediately. With a click of the fingers, and hints of “carefully” increasing supply and “stabilisation”, Mr Putin sent prices down by a half. Click two, and he drew a direct line between Europe’s energy woes and its reluctance to play by his preferred gas rules. Yes, a cold start to winter and the economic recovery had depleted reserves, the Russian president said. But the situation was only critical because of the decisions European leaders had made: preferring…

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UKRAINE SEEKS PEACE WITH THE PAST

I could not help but listen in when I came across a Kyiv museum guide addressing her less-than-attentive young audience while pointing to an information board detailing Babyn Yar, one of the most shocking massacres of World War II. Babyn Yar is a site in the Ukrainian capital where more than 33,000 Jews were murdered in just two days in September 1941. Throughout the Nazi occupation of Kyiv, around 100,000 people were killed there. Among them were members of the Organisation of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN), a formation whose supporters are known to have not only been victims of the …

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POLISH COMMANDER POINTS TO ZAPAD DRILL AS RUSSIAN EFFORT TO ‘REGAIN THE STAGE AS A GLOBAL POWER’

A Polish commander has said Russia’s Zapad 2021 military drill with Belarus featured a wide range of hybrid warfare tools that Moscow is using to advance its regional influence. Speaking during a panel at the Warsaw Security Forum on Wednesday, Lt. Gen. Tomasz Piotrowski, who leads Poland’s Armed Forces Operational Command, said the exercise enabled Moscow to test offensive measures against the alliance’s Eastern European members. “We have no doubts that Russia is very determined to regain the stage as a global power,” Piotrowski said. “When Russia plans to execute exercises, we…

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THE U.S. WAS RIGHT — EUROPE HAS BECOME A ‘HOSTAGE’ TO RUSSIA OVER ENERGY, ANALYSTS WARN

After Russia rode to Europe’s rescue and offered to increase gas supplies to the region amid soaring prices, experts said one thing had become abundantly clear: Europe is now largely at Russia’s mercy when it comes to energy, just as the U.S. had warned. Why natural gas prices are soaring Natural gas contracts hit new highs in Europe this week — and regional benchmark prices are up almost 500% so far this year — with heightened demand and a squeeze in supply putting pressure on the energy sector as the weather turns colder. Prices seesawed on Wednesday, hitting new highs before retreating after Russian President Vladimir Putin stepped in, offering an increase in Russia’s gas supplies to Europe. Market analysts said the…

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POLAND CALLS FOR ENHANCED EU-NATO COOPERATION AMID RUSSIAN BUILDUP

Poland hopes that a bolstered cooperation between the European Union and NATO, combined with the alliance’s further enlargement, could spur a more robust approach to Moscow, according to senior Polish defense officials. Speaking at the Warsaw Security Forum, an event organized by the Casimir Pulaski Foundation think tank, Polish President Andrzej Duda said on Oct. 5 that closer ties between NATO and the EU are required to combat Russia’s military-driven expansionism. “We need a strong partnership between NATO and the European Union that ensures a synergy of both organizations,” Duda said. “Russia is expanding its military presence and it endangers NATO not only…

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TIME TO RETHINK UKRAINE’S FIGHT AGAINST CORRUPTION

Discussions about the fight against corruption can sometimes become a little confused. After all, corruption cannot ever really be “defeated.” The kind of institutional corruption involving public servants of whatever kind exists in every country and always will. What can be done is to reduce this corruption to manageable levels so that it doesn’t deform governmental, economic, or social interactions. When it comes to talking about corruption, those of us lucky enough to live in the world’s most mature democracies can also be guilty of unwarranted self-righteousness when we address the problems in countries such as Ukraine. A recently released study by Global Financial Integrity, a Washington think tank, documents how US real estate has…

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НА ПРАВНИЧІ ТЕМИ

У площині відзначення 100 років Українського Вільного Університету у час конференції он лайн, під впливом виступів професорів, я застановлявся над основними темами правничих студій наступних поколінь. У правовому, а то демократичному світі, різні гілки права, конституційне, кримінальне, контрактове, збиткове, адміністративне важливі і по можливостях інституцій є забезпечені . Одначе деякі гілки є доволі занедбані не тільки в академічному світі, але також практичному і мабуть наспів час зокрема з огляду на нові комунікаційні можливості та наслідки прозорости, звернути особливу…

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ЯКІ З НАС ЛЮДЕ?

Так писав Тарас Григорович Шевченко у поемі Доля. Доля нашого народу гірка навіть сьогодні коли маємо власну державність. Ми знаходимось у стані війни, посідаємо багату землю але обкрадену злими людьми. А вороженьки і свої і чужі скрізь. Які з нас люди? Ми люди шляхетні, переважно добрі, навіть чутливі до переживань наших сусідів та інших народів. Мабуть заслужено за свій побут на землі місце у небі через свої добрі діла зокрема для інших…

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EXPORT OF GREEN HYDROGEN FROM UKRAINE TO THE EU

Ukraine is ready to become a key supplier of green hydrogen to the European Union and considers the development of hydrogen energy as a large European political project and a tool of Ukraine’s further European integration, Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba stated during his online press briefing on Thursday, 30 September. “We are not just thinking about today, but also about tomorrow, and the new opportunities for Ukraine to strengthen its security, economy and energy security. Green hydrogen offers such an opportunity for us. Developing hydrogen energy in Ukraine is not only about renewables. It is a large European political project able to significantly shift the balance of…

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UKRAINE ENERGY BOSS HANDS UK 'EASY' SOLUTION OUT OF EU GAS CRISIS: 'CAN START TOMORROW!'

The Russian President is said to have restricted the flow of gas transiting into Europe as he is hoping to avoid EU law from being implemented on the controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Europe is now facing a crisis, as less gas travelling through existing pipelines has not only depleted European gas supplies but so too has it hiked up the prices. This affects the UK as well as Europe as it is an integrated market, and Britain also imports some of Russia’s pipeline gas from the Netherland But Naftogaz’s CEO, Yuriy Vitrenko, has told Express.co.uk there is a way to put an end to the soaring gas prices, which reached record highs over the summer…

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‘DRONE ALLIANCE’ BETWEEN TURKEY AND UKRAINE MOVES AHEAD

Ukraine and Turkey recently signed a deal to construct a joint facility on Ukrainian soil for the upgrading and maintenance of armed Turkish unmanned aerial vehicles, marking the latest collaborative venture in the two countries’ so-called “drone alliance.” “It’s a big real step forward. I am grateful to [Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan]. This is a real support for the sovereignty and independence of Ukraine,” Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said during a Wednesday, Sept. 29, ceremony in Kyiv to finalize the memorandum, which also includes plans for a joint training program related to the Turkish-designed Bayraktar TB2 armed…

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PANDORA PAPERS : A GLOBAL INVESTIGATION HOW U.S. SANCTIONS TAKE A HIDDEN TOLL ON RUSSIAN OLIGARCHS

As U.S. sanctions bit into Russia’s billionaire class in 2018, an accounting firm in Singapore issued a secret appraisal of a $200 million debt owed by one of the targeted oligarchs. The verdict was bracing. The money was owed by a company controlled by Oleg Deripaska, according to a copy of the appraisal, at a time when his energy and mining empire was reeling from sanctions the United States had imposed on Russian oligarchs in response to “Russia’s worldwide malign activity.” Now Deripaska’s assets were at “risk due to the unstable political situation, demonstrated by the latest round of sanctions,” the accounting firm wrote. Recovering more than a small fraction of the $200 million, the firm concluded, “would be difficult if not impossible.” This meant a loss of tens of millions of dollars, as…

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PANDORA PAPERS REVEAL OFFSHORE HOLDINGS OF UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT AND HIS INNER CIRCLE

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and his partners in comedy production owned a network of offshore companies related to their business based in the British Virgin Islands, Cyprus, and Belize. Zelensky’s current chief aide, Serhiy Shefir, as well as the head of the country’s Security Service, were part of the offshore network. Offshore companies were used by Shefir and another business partner to buy pricey London real estate. Around the time of his 2019 election, Zelensky handed his…

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YOHANAN PETROVSKY-SHTERN: THE NEW BABYN YAR HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL CENTER IS A TROJAN HORSE OF PUTIN’S HYBRID WAR

Ukrainian politicians need to understand that Ukraine deserves its own version of the key twentieth-century events. By allowing oligarchs close to Putin to invest their money into the Babyn Yar Holocaust Memorial Center in Kyiv they let the imperial ideologists impose their misleading and harmful narrative on Ukraine, says Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern, historian and a descendant of Babyn Yar victims. Located in Ukraine’s capital Kyiv Babyn Yar is a site of one of the major mass killings during the Second World War. As many as 33,771 Jews were shot by bullets in a ravine on 29-30 September 1941 during Nazi Germany’s campaign against the…

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EUROPE IS UNDER ATTACK FROM PUTIN’S ENERGY WEAPON

Nord Stream 2 is not yet operational, but the Kremlin’s tightening grip on energy supplies is already being felt across Europe. The price of gas futures continues to hit record highs and has increased by over 600% in a matter of twelve months. What we are currently witnessing in Europe is a rerun of the oil shocks America experienced in the 1970s. The commodity is different, the safeguards are stronger, but the underlying dynamics are the same. It was not a lack of oil tankers that pushed up prices of crude and triggered an economic recession in the US almost 50 years ago, but politically motivated…

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HERE IS HOW THE US CAN TRULY HELP UKRAINE MOVE FORWARD

The meeting between US President Joe Biden and Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy which took place at the beginning of September in Washington resulted in producing a joint statement regarding US support for Ukraine. The statement included a broad set of issues Ukraine has to work on, with security being at the center. While the US expressed its commitment to Ukraine’s implementation of necessary reforms to fulfill its European and Euro-Atlantic aspirations, as well as to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, the question “what is next?” arises. Ukrainian experts gathered to discuss Ukraine’s progress and obstacles in areas the joint statement covers. The discussion took place during an online meeting of the…

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“OXYGEN FOR LIFE” PROGRAM TO HELP VULNERABLE WITH CRITICAL PANDEMIC MEDICAL EQUIPMENT – CUF SUPPORTING UKRAINE COVID RELIEF

The Canada-Ukraine Foundation (CUF) announced on October 1, 2021, a donation to help fight the impacts of COVID-19 in Ukraine, particularly hard hit by the fourth wave of the global pandemic. Together with partners League of Ukrainian Canadians, Dnipro-Oshawa Fund at BCU Foundation, and the Ukrainian National Federation, CUF committed a $30,000 CAD donation to support the “Oxygen for Life” Phase 2 program mounted by Kyiv-based civil society organization Initiative E+ . Transparency International has noted an acute shortage of…

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UKRAINE DEMANDS SANCTIONS ON RUSSIA'S GAZPROM AFTER KYIV LOSES GAS IMPORTS

Ukraine called on the United States and Germany on Friday to impose sanctions on Russia’s Gazprom, which it accused of using energy as a weapon after the energy giant implemented a transit deal with Hungary that deprives Kyiv of gas supplies. Under the terms of a long-term supply deal with Budapest that kicked in on Friday, Gazprom will no longer ship its gas to Hungary via Ukraine, but will send it via Serbia and Austria instead. That deprives Ukraine of transit revenues and also means it can no longer import reverse flow gas via Hungary, which it has been doing since 2015 as a way of not buying gas directly from Russia. Ties with Moscow have been in crisis since its annexation of Crimea in 2014 and backing for a separatist uprising in…

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UKRAINE IS SET TO BUY 24 TURKISH DRONES. SO WHY HASN’T RUSSIA PUSHED BACK?

Ukraine hopes to quickly turn around a contract to buy 24 drones from Turkey, but the former’s adversary and the latter’s ally could upend the potential sale. Turkey is Russia’s closest ally in NATO — which Ukraine wants to join — but Ankara and Moscow have diverging interests over Kyiv. The Ukrainian government announced Sept. 15 that it’s seeking 24 Bayraktar TB2 combat drones in the coming months. Two years ago, TB2 producer Baykar Makina won a contract to sell six TB2s to Ukraine. The $69 million contract also involved the sale of ammunition for the armed version. The private firm has…

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BELARUS-RUSSIA: INTEGRATION OR IMITATION

This summer was quite eventful. One such event was the meeting of the presidents of the United States and Russia, which took place on June 16. Minsk followed this meeting with particular attention. According to the USCC’s sources in the Ukrainian special services, the illegitimate President of Belarus, Alexander Lukashenko, feared that he might be traded between Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin during the talks, and even demanded assurances from the Russian president that nothing alike would happen. At the same time, the special services…

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UKRAINE’S GOVERNMENT TAKES FULL CONTROL OF NAFTOGAZ

The Kyiv Post reported, “The Cabinet of Ministers dismissed three remaining members of the supervisory board of Naftogaz, the state-owned gas and oil giant, on Sept. 27. As the owner of Naftogaz, the government automatically assumes the powers of the company’s supervisory board until the new one is formed, according to the official statement on the government’s website. Naftogaz has been the source of growing public concern since the dismissal of its CEO Andriy Kobolyev and his replacement by former acting energy minister Vitrenko in April. To appoint Vitrenko, the Cabinet of Ministers fired…

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THE RUSSIAN AND UKRAINIAN SPRING 2021 WAR SCARE

This paper is part of the CSIS “Understanding the Russian Military Today” executive education program. Summary The massing of troops and hardware by Russia along its border with Ukraine in April 2021 brought back memories of Russia’s incursion into Ukraine in 2014–15 and raised fears of another round of Russian aggression against its neighbor. Although the worst-case scenario did not materialize, these events require close attention and in-depth research because they could happen again should Russia’s leadership assess that their national security interests are at stake once more. Several…

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UKRAINE, HUNGARY SUMMON AMBASSADORS OVER RUSSIAN GAS DEAL

A diplomatic conflict between Hungary and Ukraine deepened on Tuesday when the two countries summoned each others’ ambassadors over Budapest’s decision to sign a long-term contract to purchase Russian gas, something Ukraine considers a blow to its economic and national security interests. The 15-year agreement between Hungary and Russian gas company Gazprom was finalized on Monday, and involves the import of an annual 4.5 billion cubic meters of Russian gas to Hungary through lines that bypass Ukraine, depriving it of lucrative transit fees. Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry issued a statement on Monday saying Kyiv was “surprised and disappointed” by Hungary’s deal with Russia, calling the move “a purely political, economically unreasonable…

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ANGELA'S ASHES

Much depends globally on Germany and who will replace Angela Merkel as Chancellor. It appears that three political parties will be required to form a coalition, a process that will take two or three months. During this time the country will be in limbo and it may be Christmas before the next leader of the Federal Republic of Germany is chosen. For 16 years, Merkel has been Europe’s most dominant figure and Germany remains the continent’s economic powerhouse, generating one-fifth of its total GDP. She has been lionized as a leader devoted to cohesion, prosperity, and consensus-building. But Germans have a different view. Her party struggled in this election and she has left behind a mess for Europeans to deal with due to one reason: Her inexplicable capitulation to Vladimir Putin for years. Merkel’s first major blunder was

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ВІДКРИТИЙ ЛИСТ ДО ПРЕЗИДЕНТА УКРАЇНИ

Достойний пане Президенте, Дозвольте привітати Вас з Вашим виступом перед Генеральною Асамблеєю Організацій Об’єднаних Націй у Нью Йорку. Багато слухачів були позитивно вражені Вашою промовою. Навіть ті котрі не бажали прийняти Ваших критичних зауваг буди збудженій Вашою відкритістю, відвагою і візією. Ви правильно оцінили поважні здобутки ООН в екологічній та гуманітарній площинах, і натомість слабість у політичних процесах, хоч і тут існують позитиви, про що Ви сказали. Де служать війська ООН там запроваджено бодай стабільність. Рівно ж правильно і переконливо Ви окреслили непересічний привілей Москви з правом вето у…

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DESPITE ZELENSKYY’S PLEDGES, OBSTRUCTION OF JUDICIAL REFORM CONTINUES

The Kyiv Post reported on September 24, “Ukraine’s judicial reform is stuck in limbo. The Council of Judges, Ukraine’s main professional judges’ association, continues to block this reform, despite President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s September promises to prevent sabotage. This is bad news for Ukraine. Corruption in the courtroom is one of the country’s biggest problems, according to a broad international consensus. Ukraine’s international partners, including the G7 ambassadors, have lambasted the obstruction. An important law creating a judicial reform map…

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ZELENSKYY SLAMS UN INACTION OVER PUTIN’S UKRAINE WAR

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy used his September 22 address at the United Nations General Assembly to criticize the international community’s ineffective response to Russian aggression in Ukraine and support calls for the reform of the UN itself, which he branded a “retired superhero.” The Ukrainian leader painted a grim picture of the damage done to international security by the failure to stand up for international law and hold Vladimir Putin accountable for his attack on Ukraine. “No one in the world feels safe anymore. I emphasize: no one feels safe. And no one can hide behind international law as if behind a stone wall,” commented Zelenskyy. He argued that continued international inaction over…

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ARCHBISHOP KULBOKAS: POPE FRANCIS ENCOURAGES THE PEOPLE OF UKRAINE

In an interview with Vatican News, Archbishop Visvaldas Kulbokas, whom Francis appointed Apostolic Nuncio to Ukraine last June and who will begin his assignment in Kyiv on 7 September, speaks about his origins from Lithuania to Ukraine, and his experience at the Secretariat of State. Born in Klaipėda, Lithuania, on 14 May 1974, Archbishop Kulbokas entered the Holy See’s diplomatic service in July 2004, and has worked in the Pontifical missions in Lebanon, the Netherlands, the Russian Federation, and at the Section for Relations with States of the Secretariat of State. He has also served at the Apostolic Nunciature in Kenya since 2020. The meeting with the…

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UKRAINE PASSES LAW TO CURB POLITICAL INFLUENCE OF OLIGARCHS

Ukraine’s parliament has passed a law defining the term “oligarch” and establishing a register of individuals who meet the description and who would be forced to disclose their assets and banned from financing political parties. The so-called “de-oligarchisation” bill is aimed at curbing the influence of business tycoons on the country’s politics. It was initiated by President Volodymyr Zelensky, a former comedian and actor elected in 2019 on a promise to eradicate corruption. Some 279 lawmakers in the 450-member parliament, mainly members of Zelensky’s Servant of the People party, voted in favour of the bill on Thursday. The vote comes a day after an…

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NOTHING THREATENS PUTIN’S REGIME MORE THAN UKRAINE

During a meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy at the White House earlier this month, President Biden “firmly committed” to supporting Ukraine’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and “Euro-Atlantic aspiration.” Washington also reaffirmed Ukraine’s right to decide its own foreign policy without foreign interference. But there was no mention of a timeframe for Ukraine to join NATO, even though Ukraine’s independence is hanging in the balance while it confronts heavy pressure and intimidation tactics from both Russia and China. Ruthlessly focused on asserting control over its…

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ВІД РЕДАКЦІЇ “ГОМОНУ УКРАЇНИ” ДО ПИТАННЯ ДЕМОГРАФІЧНИХ ВТРАТ ВІД ГОЛОДОМОРУ

Газета “Україна Молода” 2 червня 2021 р. надрукувала статтю до питання демографічних втрат від Голодомору, 1932-1933 рр. в Україні: “Себто ні! Історичні та правові аспекти визнання Голодомору геноцидом українців. Розрахунки і прорахунки демографів.” (https://umoloda.kyiv.ua/number/3734/196/157680/?fbclid ) Авторами статті є заслужені юристи Микола Герасименко і Віктор Скавронік. Їхня стаття піднесла полеміку щодо числа втрат Голодомору на новий “рівень”. Вони тепер пропагують число втрат у 10-12 мільйонів, та пропонують те, що усі, хто не погоджується з цією цифрою, автоматично заперечують Голодомор-геноцид та “руйнують пам’ять про жертв Голодомору та…

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GOOGLE STAYS SILENT ON RUSSIA'S GROWING INTERNET THREATS

No nation asks Google to scrub more from the internet than Russia. Over the past decade, Russian officials have requested the removal of nearly 1 million web pages, documents, apps and videos, mostly for reasons Google categorizes as “copyright” or “national security.” Last week, Russia made another request. Russian officials demanded Alphabet Inc.’s Google and Apple Inc. pull a voting app from Alexey Navalny, a jailed politician, that recommends a slate of candidates opposing President Vladimir Putin. A Russian court had ruled Navalny’s app was “extremist” and requested its removal from app stores in the country. The companies complied. It was an unprecedented intervention, and…

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U.S. HOUSE VOTES FOR SANCTIONS IN 11TH-HOUR ATTEMPT TO STOP NORD STREAM 2

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) reported on September 23, “The Democratic-controlled U.S. House of Representatives has agreed to add legislation to the annual defense-spending bill that would place sanctions on Russia’s Nord Stream 2 project, potentially putting into jeopardy an agreement reached between the Biden administration and Germany in July. The House on September 22 unanimously passed on a voice vote a package of amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), including the sanctions legislation. Biden in May agreed to waive congressionally mandated…

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UKRAINIAN LAWMAKERS PASS LAW ON OLIGARCHS AFTER ASSASSINATION ATTEMPT

Ukraine’s parliament passed a law on Thursday to order “oligarchs” to register and stay out of politics, a day after an attempt to kill a top aide to President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, which officials said could have been a response to the reform. The law provides a definition for an oligarch and gives a body headed by the president, the National Security and Defence Council, the power to determine who meets the criteria. Oligarchs would be forbidden from financing political parties or taking part in privatisations. Top officials, including the president, prime minister and head of the central bank, would be required to declare dealings they had with them. Zelenskiy says it is necessary to protect the country from powerful businessmen who have…

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УКРАЇНА ВЕДЕ ВІЙНУ ЗА НЕЗАЛЕЖНІСТЬ ПРОТИ АГРЕСІЇ РОСІЇ. НАМ ПОТРІБНА ПЕРЕМОГА, ЯКА НАСПРАВДІ ТВОРИТЬСЯ ЗАРАЗ.

Правда на нашій стороні. Україна виконує міжнародні угоди і підтримку партнерів. Північноатлантичний Альянс на своєму саміті у Брюсселі у червні 2021 року вказав шлях долучення до нього через процедуру ПДЧ та національні програми. Річна Національна Програма «Україна НАТО» (РНП) – це важливий політичний крок підтримки України найбагатшими і наймогутнішими державами світу, об‘єднаними у Північноатлантичний Альянс. РНП є не лише безпековим документом. Це, по суті, всестороння програма урядового рівня для успіху, свободи, безпеки, для синхронізації України з вільним світом. Реформи нашої державної служби, енергетики, правоохоронної і судової систем, збереження свободи…

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ЗРАДА

«Я хочу віддати вам, яка це чудова країна: яка велика раса -« БОЛЬШЕВІКИ ». Іноді, коли я читаю, або сиджу і думаю про Радянський Союз, у моєму серці наповнюється велике почуття любові та гордості за країну … Коли хтось читає Леніна і бачить, як він чітко думав, наскільки добре він знав капіталізм, наскільки добре він побачив усі можливі фактори у поєдинках; як він знав, коли діяти і що робити, як керував, боровся з найменшим відхиленням, здається неможливим, щоб людина могла бути такою великою … і тепер перемога здобута, товариші». Так написав двадцятидворічний єврей…

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ВИСТУП ПРЕЗИДЕНТА УКРАЇНИ ВОЛОДИМИРА ЗЕЛЕНСЬКОГО НА ЗАГАЛЬНИХ ДЕБАТАХ 76-Ї СЕСІЇ ГЕНЕРАЛЬНОЇ АСАМБЛЕЇ ООН

Шановний пане Голово, шановні глави держав, урядів, пані та панове! Пора прокинутись! Це – заклик Генерального секретаря ООН, шановного пана Гутерріша, до світових лідерів, до нас із вами напередодні Асамблеї. Для мене цей заклик особливий. Для мене кожна ніч перед Генасамблеєю ООН – це безсонна ніч. У 2019 році – це хвилювання перед першим виступом. 2020-й загалом був роком без сну для світу через COVID-19. А про минулу ніч я розповім детальніше. Третя година ночі. Десятки дзвінків. На першого помічника Президента України здійснено замах. 12 пострілів. Три влучили у водія. Ось вам ціна змін у державі, ось вам ціна реформ. На щастя, Сергій живий. На щастя, життю водія на…

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EUROPEAN UNION HYPOCRISY REACHES NEW HEIGHTS

Following the signing of the trilateral “AUKUS” security pact between the United States, Australia, and the United Kingdom, the voices of “European strategic autonomy” are again echoing in parts of the European Union. Led by an angry French government, whose submarine contract with Australia was aborted, Europeans are being told yet again that the U.S. is an unreliable ally and that trans-Atlantic relations are broken. Such statements are both mendacious and hypocritical. While the U.S. military’s muscle holds NATO together and deters any direct Russian aggression against EU states, Germany conspires with Russia on energy deals over the heads of its EU neighbors. At the same time, France has been pushing for a summit with…

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В'ЯТРОВИЧ ПРЕЗЕНТУВАВ ФІЛЬМ ПРО БОРОТЬБУ БАНДЕРИ ПРОТИ ГІТЛЕРА І СТАЛІНА

Центр досліджень визвольного руху разом із Володимиром В’ятровичем випустив п’яту серію історичного кінопроєкту “10 Днів Незалежності” – “Бандера VS Гітлер і Сталін: Як націоналісти відновили Українську Незалежність”. Про це повідомили у ЦДВР. “Звільнити Україну від сталінського режиму і відновити Українську державу – такою була глобальна мета ОУН, які вирішили використати наступ гітлерівської Німеччини на Совєтський Союз. Акт відновлення незалежності прозвучав у радіоефірі пізно ввечері 30 червня 1941 року. Втратили цю незалежність українці вже за тиждень, коли Гітлер показав своє справжнє обличчя”, – йдеться в анотації центру. Володимир В’ятрович прокоментував, що нова…

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THE WEAPONISATION OF NORD STREAM 2 HAS ALREADY STARTED

Global market trends surely play a role in explaining the current gas price rally, but the shell game played by the Kremlin is here for everyone to see unless we choose to look the other way, writes Mykhailo Gonchar. Mykhailo Gonchar is the chief editor of the Black Sea Security Journal and president of The Centre for Global Studies “Strategy XXI”. Seven years ago, on a misty Thursday morning of 27 February, the little green men were first spotted in Crimea. Nineteen days later, the borders of a European nation were changed by force for the first time since World War II, when Russia annexed Ukrainian sovereign territory. What enabled this blitzkrieg was plausible deniability – skilfully weaponised by the Kremlin to disorient and confuse the…

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HUNGARY STEPPING ON THE KREMLIN’S RAKE

The agreement of Berlin and Washington with Moscow on implementing the Nord Stream 2 project this fall has jeopardized the security not only of Ukraine but of the whole of Europe. And the leaders of the Old World have already felt the first fruits of this step. The Kremlin inspired another gas crisis on the eve of the heating season, as a result of which the price of “blue fuel” reached record levels. Therefore, the gas agreement between Hungary and Russia seems natural against the background of calls in the Hungarian media for the country’s withdrawal from the EU, but once again makes us think about the vitality of Euro-Atlantic institutions. Way to Hungexit Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán has…

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КРЕМЛІВСЬКІ «ГРАБЛІ» УГОРЩИНИ

Порозуміння Берліна та Вашингтона з Москвою щодо реалізації вже цієї осені проєкту «Північний потік – 2» поставило під удар безпеку не лише України, але й усієї Європи. І перші плоди такого кроку лідери Старого Світу уже відчули. Кремль інспірував чергову газову кризу напередодні опалювального сезону, у результаті якої ціна на «блакитне паливо» сягнула рекордних показників. Тож газова угода Угорщини та Росії на тлі закликів в угорських ЗМІ про вихід країни з ЄС, хоч і виглядає закономірною, але вкотре змушує задуматися про спроможність євроатлантичних інституцій. Шлях до «Угзіт» Угорський прем’єр-міністр Віктор Орбан після свого другого приходу до влади у 2010 році поступово встановив…

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JOINT MILITARY DRILL TO KICK OFF IN UKRAINE AS CONGRESS SEEKS AIR DEFENSE BOOST FOR THE COUNTRY

Congress is keen to support Ukraine as the country tries to fill an air and missile defense capability, and lawmakers want to know how the Pentagon can help the ally. The House Armed Services Committee, in its markup of the fiscal 2022 defense policy bill, said the U.S. “remains a steadfast partner of Ukraine and it is in the United States national security interest [to] assist the Government of Ukraine in countering Russian military aggression.” Should the language become law, the committee is giving the Pentagon 90 days following enactment of the legislation to deliver a report on options for how the…

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UCC STATEMENT ON CANADA’S FEDERAL ELECTION

September 21, 2021. OTTAWA, ON. The Ukrainian Canadian Congress (UCC) congratulates Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the Liberal Party of Canada on their victory in Canada’s federal election. “We look forward to working with Canada’s new government,” stated Alexandra Chyczij, National President of the UCC. “We thank all parties and candidates, who took part in Canada’s election, for their dedication to serving Canada.” This election took place in the difficult conditions of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Thousands of Canadians, including many Ukrainian Canadians, ran as candidates in yesterday’s election. Many volunteered their time working on campaigns. Thousands of Canadians worked at polling stations and returning offices…

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HOW GRU SABOTAGE AND ASSASSINATION OPERATIONS IN CZECHIA AND BULGARIA SOUGHT TO UNDERMINE UKRAINE

Bellingcat first reported on the presence of members from GRU Unit 29155 in Bulgaria at the time when a Bulgarian arms manufacturer collapsed into a coma following what was identified as poisoning by an unknown substance. At that same time, the entrepreneur’s son and the production manager of his factory were also poisoned. A possible second poisoning – again with overlapping trip to Bulgaria by members of GRU Unit 29155 – appeared to have been attempted a month later, days after Gebrev and his son were released from hospital. • We have previously identified and described operations of an elite sabotage unit within…

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THE LEGACY OF PRESIDENT GEORGE H.W. BUSH

Facts are stubborn. Legacies are malleable and almost invariably created partially on facts but largely on spin. On August 1, 1991, President Bush spoke to the Verkhovna Rada of Soviet Ukraine. Here is a particularly damning excerpt of what he said: Some people have urged the United States to choose between supporting President Gorbachev and supporting independence-minded leaders throughout the U.S.S.R. I consider this a false choice. In fairness, President Gorbachev has achieved astonishing things, and his policies of glasnost, perestroika, and democratization point toward the goals of freedom, democracy, and economic liberty. We will maintain the strongest possible relationship with the Soviet Government of President Gorbachev. But we…

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СПАДЩИНА ПРЕЗИДЕНТА ДЖОРДЖА Х. БУША

Факти вперті. Спадщини гнучкі і майже незмінно створюються частково на фактах, але значною мірою на фікціях. 1 серпня 1991 року президент Джордж Буш старший виступив у Верховній Раді Радянської України. Ось особливо жахливий уривок з того, що він сказав: “Деякі люди закликали Сполучені Штати вибирати між підтримкою президента Горбачова та підтримкою незалежних держав по всій СРСР. Я вважаю це помилковим вибором. Заради справедливості, президент Горбачов досяг приголомшливих речей, і його політика гласності, перебудови та демократизації вказує на цілі свободи, демократії та…

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ОДНА З ДАВНІШИХ ДІАСПОР

У цьому році відзначаємо 130 років від поселення українцями сонячної Бразилії. З цієї нагоди Острозька Академія, найстарша інституція вищої освіти в Україні, спільно з Посольством України у Бразилії влаштували конференцію «он лайн». До цього заходу приєднались представники громади у Бразилії а також і української світової спільноти. Вступну і дуже змістовну доповідь з фактами та подробицями виголосив Посол України. Приєднався також Посол Бразилії у Києві вказуючи на вклад українців у розвиток культури та політики його країни. За обчисленням демографів більше пів мільйона громадян чи просто мешканців Бразилії знаходять своє коріння серед українців. Це наслідки трьох течій імміграції яка фактично почалась 1889 року, друга від 1907-14 і третя 1947-52. Здебільш вони знаходяться у провінції Парана, а зокрема у…

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ГАЗОВИЙ ШАНТАЖ ПУТІНА: СЕРЙОЗНО, ПРОТЕ УКРАЇНА МАЄ ШАНСИ НА ПЕРЕМОГУ

Ціни на газ злетіли до рекордних висот, європейські сховища не заповнюються, з українських сховищ нерезиденти вже зараз виводять газ. Ціна на газ також тисне на уряди: не тільки в Україні, але і в європейських державах почали задумуватися про ризик “тарифних майданів”. Саме так, вони бувають і в ЄС, згадайте “жовті жилети” у Франції в зв’язку з запровадженням податку на пальне. Наприклад, 30% болгар вже кажуть, що не зможуть сплачувати за комунальні послуги через здорожчання газу. Дуже ймовірно, що Путін ухвалить – або вже ухвалив – рішення повністю припинити транзит українською територією. Це означає, що газу, який може бути проданий Європі через хаб Баумгартен, може…

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ТЕРОР, СТРАХ, НЕПРАВДА СТАЄ ПРАВДОЮ

Недавно якось принагідно попала мені у руки книжка класика відомого англійського автора Джорджа Орвелла “1984” відома по всьому світу. Читав я цю книжку у англійському оригіналі студентом п’ятдесят років тому. Читав знову тепер в українському перекладі. Цікаво, що вражіння відмінні, правда більш поінформовані на підставі власного досвіду. Але що важніше вражіння далеко глибші через роки та історію. Сьогодні рекомендую читати для кращого зрозуміння сучасного відносин Москви та України. Автор описав цікаві, фактично макабричні явища здавалося б з часів Гітлерівської Німеччини чи Сталінського Союзу. Автор одначе не передбачував Російської Федерації ані спадщини колишніх…

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THE MAIN LESSON OF HISTORY

Author: Alik Gomelsky

As someone who has conducted a rigorous study of documents related to the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (Banderites) (OUN-B), the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA), and the leaders of the Ukrainian insurgent movement, as well as similar materials related to the Jewish Zionist movement, and having devoted much time to learning about Jewish–Ukrainian relations in the twentieth century, I was astonished by Noakes’s extremely superficial approach to such an important topic. For an article that purports to accuse Roman Shukhevych of crimes against humanity, it lacks compelling documented evidence. Shukhevych was never declared a criminal by either the Nuremberg Tribunal or any other court of first instance. Thus, the article, which does not put forward any evidence of such an accusation, may be regarded as a PR stunt or as slander. Does it make sense to cite Efraim Zuroff’s opinion of…

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VIADIMIR PUTIN ACCUSED OF WEAPONIZING RUSSIAN GAS

Vladimir Putin is attempting to pressure Europe into rubber-stamping his Nord Stream 2 pipeline by weaponizing Russian gas supplies. With construction work on Russia’s controversial energy pipeline now finally complete, critics say the Kremlin is artificially pushing up gas prices in a bid to speed up the lengthy certification process and make the pipeline operational. Such maneuvers would appear to justify earlier fears over Vladimir Putin’s weaponization of Russian energy supplies to the EU, but there has yet to be any significant response from Washington, Berlin, or Brussels. For a number of weeks, Russia has faced accusations of deliberately failing to meet heightened European demand for gas, leading to spiraling prices and alarmingly low storage levels across the…

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THE MINSK PROTOCOL: A MENACE TO UKRAINE’S FUTURE

The West would be foolish to believe its outline peace plan for Ukraine is anything other than a disaster in the making. It was seven years ago that the Minsk Protocol was half-signed by Ukraine, at gunpoint. The Arrangements are often seen in the West as a fire extinguisher for the Donbas war, a solution touted as a possible curtain-raiser to an anti-China rapprochement with Russia. Not only is this pure fantasy thinking, but it also ignores the key fact: that the Minsk process is actually a tripwire waiting to detonate across Ukraine. Minsk’s implementation would not only perpetuate the Russo-Ukraine war but cause it to spill over into Eurasia. The vision of Minsk as a fledgling peace solution ignores crucial context: the Kremlin considers restoration of…

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UKRAINE’S TOP SOCCER STARS JOIN THE COUNTRY’S UKRAINIAN LANGUAGE RENAISSANCE

On the eve of his country’s September 1 World Cup qualification tie in Kazakhstan, Ukrainian national soccer team captain Andriy Yarmolenko gave a press conference in the Ukrainian language. At first glance, it may not be immediately apparent why a prominent athlete speaking his national language is in any way remarkable. However, given the traditional dominance of the Russian language in Ukrainian football and many other aspects of the country’s pop culture, Yarmolenko’s gesture had real meaning. The footballer himself certainly seemed to recognize the significance of his linguistic choice. He was also…

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WHY UKRAINE’S SMALL PARALYMPIC TEAM PACKS SUCH A BIG PUNCH

In American sports terms, the Paralympians of Ukraine constitute a small-market marvel, the Slavic equivalent of the Oakland Athletics. At the Tokyo Paralympics, which ended Sunday, the Ukrainians finished fifth in the overall medal standings with 98, just six fewer than the United States. Each of the top four countries — China, Britain, Russia and the United States — had more than 220 athletes in Tokyo, while Ukraine brought 139. “It’s a small country clearly punching above its weight,” said Craig Spence, the International Paralympic Committee’s lead spokesman. The success has not been…

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МІНІСТЕРСТВО ЗАКОРДОННИХ СПРАВ УКРАЇНИ — ОСОБИСТІ СПОСТЕРЕЖЕННЯ

МЗСУ особливе у способах дії. Відрізняється від інших закордонних міністерств та дуже залежить від характеру його керівника. Україна до значної міри успадкувала кадри від СРСР а також у процесі нового оформлення подібно до старих часів міністерство стало місцем затруднення упривільованих і дуже часто не фахових і тому часто не компетентних. В розмові з одним молодим і хіба надійним Послом України я висловився негативно про тодішнього постійного представника України до ООН як некваліфікованого синка і ще до того синка одіозного радянського міністра за часів ще більш одіозного генсека в Радянській Україні посол…

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THE U.S. ARMY’S IRON DOME COULD BE HEADED TO UKRAINE

Since taking office, the Biden administration has kept up Washington’s shipments of weapons and training to the Ukrainian military, including $275 million worth of equipment and support packages since March. But some in Congress are looking to do more and have included an amendment attached to the 2022 defense bill that would pressure the Biden administration to sell or transfer new air and missile defense systems to Ukraine, including potentially sending an Iron Dome battery currently being operated by the U.S. Army. Included in the House Armed Services…

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PROJECT FACTS

The following contains researched material made available to the Ukrainian community to swiftly counter cases of defamation and calumny against Ukraine and Ukrainians. “Project FACTS” Backgrounder: Conflicting Disinformation The Ukrainian Resistance/Liberation Movement led by the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) and the Ukrainian Insurgent Army (UPA) had been accused by both Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia of supporting the opposing side during World War II. FACTS: This conflicting disinformation that was promoted by Hitler’s and Stalin’s propaganda machines is reflected in countless documents of the time. To witness: Nazi accusation “Ukrainian people, take notice!…Moscow gives orders to…

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COUNCIL OF JUDGES BLOCKS JUDICIAL REFORM, PROMPTS OUTRAGE

The Kyiv Post reported on September 14, “The Council of Judges, the main professional association of Ukrainian judges, on Sept. 13 blocked Ukraine’s judicial reform. The judges’ association failed to get enough votes to elect three representatives to the Ethics Council, a body crucial for cleansing Ukraine’s judiciary under one of President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s two judicial reform bills. Out of the 26 members of the Council of Judges, 16 did not vote for any of the candidates. The deadline for their election expired on Sept. 13. The Council of Judges also called on the Verkhovna Rada and the Supreme Court to revise the judicial reform legislation. Under the procedure, the Supreme Court may file a motion with the Constitutional Court to recognize the…

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RUSSIA HAS WARNED EU LEADERS TO BE PREPARED FOR A "FULL-SCALE" CONFLICT WITH MOSCOW AS TENSIONS WITH UKRAINE ESCALATE.

Speaker of the Russian State Duma Vyacheslav Volodin warned EU leaders should pay attention to the ongoing row between Russia and Ukraine as Europeans would be dragged into a full-scale conflict with Moscow. The warning came in response to Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky’s remarks last week about a war between Ukraine and Russia being possible, in response to reporter’s questions at a YES Brainstorming forum. Mr Zelensky added the conflict would be “the biggest mistake for Russia primarily”. He argued Russians and Ukrainians have become enemies with a huge gap lying between them now. But Mr Volodin warned the Ukrainian President’s comments could only serve as a means for tensions to escalate as he urged EU leaders to…

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JUDGE VOVK, YANUKOVYCH ALLY, ZELENSKYY OFFICIAL ENGINEERED CONSTITUTIONAL COURT COUP

The Kyiv Post reported on September 11, “According to a new journalistic investigation, a powerful alliance got rid of Stanislav Shevchuk, one of the most effective and independent justices on the Constitutional Court. Notorious Judge Pavlo Vovk, President Volodymyr Zelensky’s ex-chief of staff Andriy Bohdan and lawyer Andriy Portnov organized the dismissal of Shevchuk, head of the Constitutional Court, in May 2019, according to a Sept. 8 investigation by the Slidstvo.info journalism project. Portnov denied the accusations, while Bohdan and Vovk did not respond to requests for comment. Vovk, head of the Kyiv District Administrative Court, was…

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ГОЛОВНИЙ УРОК ІСТОРІЇЇ

Автор: Алік Гомельський

Декілька часу тому побачив на сайті CBC статтю: “Victims of communism memorial received donations honoring fascists, Nazi collaborators, according to website” (Taylor C. Noakes · for CBC News · Posted: Jul 23, 2021 4:00 AM ET | Last Updated: July 23 https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/victims-communism-memorial-fascists-1.6112809 ) і уважно її прочитав. Як людина, яка дуже пильно і ретельно вивчала документи стосовно ОУН(Б), УПА, персоналій лідерів українського повстансьського руху, а також подібні матеріали стосовно єврейського сіонистського руху, присвятивши багато часу вивченню єврейсько-українських відносин у ХХ сторіччі, я був дуже здивований вкрай поверховим підходом містера Ноакса до такої…

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THE BIDEN DOCTRINE SHOULD START WITH UKRAINE

Following the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, some see an emerging Biden doctrine, which aims to avoid the aggressive use of U.S. military force and nation-building and instead focuses on building and strengthening alliances and confronting authoritarianism. No country offers a better opportunity to demonstrate that approach than Ukraine. A large country in the heart of Europe that is defending NATO’s eastern flank against Russian aggression, Ukraine is strategically important to the United States. Unlike Afghanistan, Ukraine is already a developed country, a young democracy and an aspiring EU and NATO member. Since its independence from the Soviet Union in 1991, it has seen five peaceful — if sometimes rocky — transitions of…

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MOSCOW HESITATED IN POLAND — WILL IT IN BELARUS?

Forty years ago, the USSR used a major military exercise in part to scare Poland’s communist leaders into cracking down on protesters, many associated with the independent trade union Solidarity. A similar Russian exercise now could be aimed in part at pressuring Belarus. If so, the West could respond in several ways. On Sept. 10, Russia began a week-long military exercise called Zapad-2021. Perhaps involving some 100,000 personnel, it focuses on Russia’s western region and Belarus. The exercise may simulate threats from NATO members Poland and the Baltics and from Scandinavia. This war game…

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NORD STREAM 2 CONSTRUCTION COMPLETED, BUT UKRAINE PLEDGES TO CONTINUE FIGHT

Ukraine has said it will continue to fight against Nord Stream 2 after Russia announced the gas pipeline was completed. The Kremlin said the pipeline, which runs from Russia to Germany, should be put into operation “as soon as possible”. The controversial project, which began in April 2018, has for years been opposed by both Ukraine and the United States. Critics say the 1,230-kilometre pipeline under the Baltic Sea will increase Europe’s energy dependence on Moscow. But Russia’s state-controlled gas giant, Gazprom, hailed the end of construction as a success for Russia. CEO Alexei Miller said in a statement on…

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NAVIGATING THE GEOPOLITICAL BATTLEFIELD OF UKRAINIAN HISTORY

When Ukraine became central to the American impeachment procedure of late 2019 and early 2020, I found myself obliged to answer numerous questions about the country from journalists and the general public alike. They boiled down to one query: “Why Ukraine?” My new collection of essays seeks to answer this question by examining the history of Ukraine and present-day Ukraine’s evolving relationship with its own history. As many of the essays show, history is central to Ukraine’s current war with Russia and its relations with the West. With only one exception, these essays were all written in the…

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FROM KABUL TO KYIV: STRENGTHENING DETERRENCE AMID QUESTIONS ABOUT AMERICAN RESOLVE

Deterrence smells like tank exhaust and feels like an earthquake. Hundreds of armored vehicles rumbled over streets, thousands of troops marched in formation, and dozens of planes flew overhead as Ukrainians cheered during their Independence Day parade on August 24. Kyiv’s main boulevard—Khreshchatyk—filled to the Maidan as the city bathed in blue and yellow. Ukrainians celebrated thirty years since their overwhelming vote to leave the Soviet Union to form a separate country. While the world watched Kabul, another consequential geopolitical story was unfolding in Kyiv. The Afghanistan War’s tragic end is being judged in…

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NO NATO PLAN FOR UKRAINE. WHAT ZELENSKYY AND BIDEN PROMISED — AND DID NOT PROMISE — EACH OTHER

The Joint statement on strategic partnership that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and US President Joseph Biden signed on 2 September in the White House has been called a success. However, what it does not contain is as revealing as what it contains, particularly — the lack of any clear NATO promises, writes European Pravda editor Serhiy Sydorenko. Formally, the document marks the result of the meeting of the two presidents, but in reality, the text was approved by Kyiv and Washington beforehand and is rather a reflection of the collective sentiments towards Ukraine in the US government. It also showcases the main expectations from Ukraine that Kyiv agreed to publicly confirm…

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THE HUTA PIENIATSKA MASSACRE

In order to comprehend the degree of guilt of Waffen SS “Galizien” in this crime, it is necessary to make a careful study of the history of this division and then to determine that until the spring of 1944 all the infantry units did their training in the Polish camp Heidelager near the town of Dębica, east of Cracow, that is, approximately 300 kilometers from Huta. Following several requests, the division dispatched a battle group (SS Kampfgruppe Beyersdоrff, named after the commander of an artillery regiment, SS- Standartenführer Friedrich Beyersdorff, who also held the rank of police colonel). Kampfgruppe Beyersdorff consisted of an…

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ГОРБУЛІН: РФ НАГАДУЄ РОМАНОВСЬКЕ ОПУДАЛО, НАБИТЕ СТАЛІНСЬКОЮ ВАТОЮ, ЯКЕ КРОКУЄ ПІД ВЛАСОВСЬКИМИ ПРАПОРАМИ. УЯВЛЕННЯ ПРО ІСТОРІЮ У РОСІЯН ВІДПОВІДНЕ

Український політик і науковець, колишній генеральний директор Національного космічного агентства України Володимир Горбулін у своїй статті для видання “Факти” розповів, чому ненависть Росії до себе трансформується в ненависть до сусідніх країн і чим для українців небезпечне об’єднання з росіянами в “один народ”. Видання “ГОРДОН” публікує повну версію статті Горбуліна. Горбулін: Зовнішня агресія Московії зумовлена внутрішньою порожнечею цього давнього і, вочевидь, невдалого відгалуження Київської Русі. Показово, що не лише привиди колишнього Радянського Союзу надихають нинішнє кремлівське керівництво та пропагандистів – вони дедалі частіше…

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КОРОТКІ ЛЬВІВСЬКІ ДНІ

Львів український, золотистий у сонці, навіть теплий на порозі осені. Хіба важніше у ньому відчутно безсмертний революційний український дух. Вже на поїзді я цей дух відчув коли зустрів давнього знайомого активіста патріота Рухівця – Ярослава Кендзьора. Поговорили ми про перші дні тих подій ще до проголошення 24 серпня 1991 року, включно з проголошенням суверенітету 16 липня рік раніше, перші зїзди Народного Руху України та його участь у шістьох скликаннях ВРУ ще з УРСР. Він недавно передав матеріал для українського телебачення як українці повалили імперію. Це висвітлювали у серіалах. Вже з першого дня у Львові я відчув своє місто. Приходив на…

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ROMAN SHUKHEVYCH, THE JEWS OF UKRAINE AND THE MGB USSR

`Despite the claims put forward by opponents of the UPA, Roman Shukhevych was no “SS-Obersturmführer” (as stated by opponents of the UPA), nor was he an “SS-Hauptmann” (as claimed by Joel Lion, Ambassador of Israel to Ukraine). The Nachtigall Battalion in which Shukhevych served was not an SS unit but part of the Abwehr, that is, the Wehrmacht. Neither Yad Vashem nor historians are in possession of any information indicating that Shukhevych took part in the Shoah. In late February–early March 2008, a group of Ukrainian historians and staff members of the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) visited…

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PUTIN’S PIPELINE POSES AN “EXISTENTIAL THREAT” TO UKRAINE

The CEO of Ukrainian energy giant Naftogaz has slammed Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline as a threat to European security and an existential threat to Ukraine. Speaking to the Atlantic Council, Naftogaz chief Yuriy Vitrenko was also critical of the pipeline’s beneficial owner, Gazprom, which he branded as a “rogue corporation” that has flouted laws, regulations, and is controlled by the Kremlin. Ukraine has long opposed the Nord Stream 2 energy pipeline, which aims to take Russian gas to Germany across the Baltic Sea. Officials in Kyiv say the project is an economically unjustified geopolitical weapon designed primarily to bypass and isolate Ukraine. However, hopes of preventing the pipeline’s completion received a major blow in…

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AHEAD OF WHITE HOUSE MEETING, UKRAINE’S ZELENSKY EXPRESSES FRUSTRATION WITH WESTERN ALLIES

Ahead of his meeting with President Biden at the end of the month, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has expressed frustration with Western allies’ hesitancy to greenlight Kyiv’s accession to NATO and taken issue with Biden’s comment that the country still has “to clean up corruption” before it can be considered for membership in the military alliance. In a wide-ranging interview Wednesday with The Washington Post and four other media outlets, Zelensky said the ambiguity over Ukraine’s NATO admittance is “a signal to other countries that you guys are not welcome here, and Russia is just around the corner, increasing its clout.” Zelensky’s White House visit — something he’s been…

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THE U.S. AND UKRAINE NEED TO REBOOT THEIR RELATIONSHIP. HERE’S HOW THEY CAN DO IT.

In the global struggle between democracy and dictatorship, and the fight for a peaceful Europe, Ukraine is on the front lines — not unlike West Germany during the Cold War. During the 20th century, the United States had to demonstrate extraordinary resolve in defending the democracy and security of our friends in West Berlin and West Germany from Soviet aggression. The same is now required in a divided Ukraine. As President Biden prepares for his meeting with his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelensky, on Aug. 30, he would do well to keep this in mind. Especially after the return to power of the…

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CONSTANTINOPLE PATRIARCH VISITS UKRAINE FOR INDEPENDENCE

The Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople arrived on a visit to Ukraine to attend festivities marking the 30th anniversary of its declaration of independence. On Saturday, Patriarch Batholomew I and the leader of the new Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Metropolitan Epiphanius I, together conducted a lithurgy in Kyiv’s St. Michael’s Cathedral. The patriarch met late Friday with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, who invited him to Ukraine to attend the 30th independence anniversary, which is being marked Tuesday. Ukraine declared its independence on Aug. 24, 1991, days after the collapse of a Soviet hardline coup that precipitated the breakup of the USSR. “For me personally, for Ukraine, for all of us, it is a great honor that you joined us on…

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UKRAINE'S LEADER VOWS TO DO ALL HE CAN TO BRING BACK CRIMEA

Ukraine’s president on Monday vowed to do all he can to bring back the peninsula of Crimea, annexed by Russia seven years ago, and urged international allies to support the effort. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy spoke at the Crimean Platform summit, called by Ukraine to build up pressure on Russia over the 2014 annexation that has been denounced as illegal by most of the world. Russia’s relations with the West have sunk to post-Cold War lows as a result. In his opening remarks, Zelenskyy promised to “do everything possible to return Crimea, so that Crimea, together with Ukraine, becomes part of Europe.” “For this we will use all possible political, legal and first and foremost diplomatic means,” Zelenskyy said, adding that Kyiv needs “effective support…

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UKRAINE’S RENEWED INDEPENDENCE: WHY IT MATTERS!

Thirty years ago, countless, hopeful offerings of prayers were answered, the courageous David against Goliath struggle of Ukrainian freedom fighters was won, and tremendous sacrifices of generations of Ukrainians were rewarded, as Ukrainians received God’s greatest gift for a nation when the following words of the Act of Declaration of Independence of Ukraine resonated in the Ukrainian Parliament on August 24, 1991: The Verkhovna Rada … solemnly declares the Independence of Ukraine and the creation of an independent Ukrainian state – Ukraine…

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY UKRAINE

My first trip to Ukraine was in February 1992 after the Soviet Union was dismantled. Kyiv was cold and gray. People were impoverished but happy to be out from under the Russian boot. Since then, I have been there dozens of times as a journalist, raised funds for various causes, and co-founded the Canadian-Ukrainian Chamber of Commerce. I have written about and supported anti-corruption efforts as a newspaper columnist and a Non-resident Senior Fellow with the Eurasia Center at the Atlantic Council in Washington, D.C. To me, geopolitically, Ukraine is the line in the sand in the Cold War 2.0 against Vladimir Putin. But as Ukrainians gather to celebrate their Independence Day, Vladimir Putin rankles. Since April, the country has been surrounded on three sides by Russian troops and tanks, and…

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З ДНЕМ НЕЗАЛЕЖНОСТІ!

Шановні Друзі і Подруги! Управа Ліги Українців Канади відділ Торонто вітає членів нашого відділу і їхні родини а також всю Українську громаду з 30-тими роковинами Незалежності України. Українці на протязі багатьох століть боролися за те, щоби бути господарями на своїй землі. Довгі роки українці були поділені поміж різними державами і не мали змоги побудувати власну державу. 24 серпня 1991 року Україна була проголошена як Незалежна Держава. НезалежністьУкраїни не дає спрокою нашим сусідам, а особливо Росії, яка хоче приєднати Україну до себе. Росія окупувала частину України і на цьому не збирається зупинятися. Українці в Україні і в цілому світі повинні як ніколи згуртуватися і відстояти свою незалежність щоби нашу державу наші вороги знову не затягнули в нове ярмо. Бажаємо всім…

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CRIMEAN TATARS BEMOAN THEIR PLIGHT AS UKRAINE HOSTS SUMMIT

Erfan Kudusov fled Crimea with his wife and four children after Russia’s annexation of Ukraine’s Black Sea peninsula in 2014, along with many other Crimean Tatars who resented Moscow’s rule. For Kudusov and others in Crimea, the Russian takeover evoked tragic family memories of the 1944 mass deportation of Crimean Tatars on Soviet dictator Josef Stalin’s order, raising fears of discrimination and persecution. Their fears have materialized. A few friends of Kudusov who stayed in Crimea have since been convicted on charges of extremism, separatism and membership in banned organizations and…

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KYIV’S SHINE CASTS A SHADOW OVER MOSCOW

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin may have put on a smug face when he received Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel on Aug. 20. But in reality, he has good reasons to feel vexed and frustrated by Ukraine and its defiant stance against Russia’s war. Despite Putin’s continuing occupation of Crimea and parts of eastern Ukraine, persistent scare-mongering tactics and subversive elements of hybrid warfare, Kyiv has stood firm and has in effect launched its own subtle non-military counter-offensive. It has been highlighted by the highly impressive scale of international support for President Volodymyr Zelensky’s Crimea Platform initiative and for Ukraine’s sovereignty and independence on the 30th anniversary of the…

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В’ЯЧЕСЛАВ ГУК. ХВОРИЙ ХЛОПЧИК

Уже 6 років триває війна в Афганістані. Убитих там радянських солдатів ховали через подвір’я школи, де ті колись навчалися. На подвір’я заносили домовину з убитим, а біля неї шикували нас, школярів, – і старші класи, і взагалі малечу. Від природи я людина надто чутлива. Оце «надто» мені завжди дуже шкодило, шкодить і тепер, але природу не зміниш. Після побаченого жаху я приходив додому, зачинявся в кімнаті і просто плакав, але так, щоб ніхто з домашніх того не бачив. Мені було дуже неприємно і боляче. Усе тіло вкривали мурахи. А ще було відчуття якоїсь безпорадності й приреченості. Мені здавалося, що я ходив не до школи, а до…

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З МОЇХ БУДНІВ – ПЕРШІ ЧОТИРИ ДНІ ЗНОВ В УКРАЇНІ

Пройшло майже два роки від останнього візиту, з жовтня 2019 року. Дещо змінилося на краще (хоча для мене з американськими доларами це противно), але інші будні на гірше. Найбільшим позитивом це здається скріплення української гривні. Правда, я не економіст і тому не знаю чи це завдяки економії чи просто маніпуляції Національного Банку України. Одначе відчутно і видно у загальному, що на вулицях Києва не проявляється велика бідність хоча вона мабуть не відсутня по домах бо ціни продуктів відносно високі навіть при сильній гривні. Княжий город готується до відмічення тридцять років незалежності. Репетиції війського параду на Хрещатику та у повітрі видні та чутні по цілому Києві. На Михайлівській площі репетиція…

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LIBERAL DEMOCRACY IS WORTH A FIGHT

Of all the empty, pointless statements that are periodically repeated by Western politicians, none is more empty and pointless than this one: “There can be no military solution to this conflict.” That was what Ban Ki-moon, then the UN secretary-general, said back in 2013: “There is no military solution to the conflict in Syria.” John Kerry, then secretary of state, echoed those same words—“No military solution to the conflict in Syria”—on many occasions, including in 2013 and again in 2015. Zalmay Khalilzad, the U.S. special representative for Afghanistan, said this on August 3: “We believe there is no military solution” in Afghanistan. “Ultimately, for Afghanistan to have peace and stability there needs to be a negotiated political settlement.” Even British Prime Minister Boris Johnson repeated this, solemnly…

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RUSSIA WARNS UKRAINE AND OTHER NEIGHBORS TO DRAW LESSONS FROM FALL OF KABUL

The sudden collapse of the Afghan National Army and security forces, the fall of Kabul without a fight, President Ashraf Ghani fleeing the country, and the victorious Taliban taking everything are currently a source of mass revelry for the state-controlled Russian media. The propaganda machine describes the hasty and disorganized withdrawal of the United States and allied forces from Afghanistan, along with the collapse of their Afghan allies, as a turning point, signaling the decline of US regional and global power and credibility. Russian outlets accuse US President Joseph Biden of double dealing and incompetence (Rossiyskaya Gazeta, August 17). Ukraine and…

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U.S. OFFICIALS IN GERMANY HIT BY HAVANA SYNDROME

At least two U.S. officials stationed in Germany sought medical treatment after developing symptoms of the mysterious health complaint known as Havana Syndrome, according to U.S. diplomats. The symptoms, which included nausea, severe headaches, ear pain, fatigue, insomnia and sluggishness, began to emerge in recent months and some victims were left unable to work, according to the diplomats. They are the first cases to be reported in a NATO country that hosts U.S. troops and nuclear weapons. U.S. diplomats said that similar incidents had been registered among American officials stationed in other European nations but declined to provide any detail. Some victims were intelligence officers or…

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BIDEN AND MERKEL MUST CONFRONT PUTIN’S IMPERIAL AMBITIONS IN UKRAINE

Russian President Vladimir Putin is often portrayed in the international media as a master manipulator whose KGB training allows him to routinely outmaneuver opponents and remain three steps ahead of the competition. The reality may be somewhat more prosaic. While Putin clearly punches above his weight on the international stage, much of his success in reviving Russia’s status over the past two decades has been due to a far more down-to-earth combination of bribery, opportunism, and old-fashioned aggression. The most obvious example of Putin’s limitations as a strategic thinker has been his disastrous handling of Ukraine. When he first took power at the turn of the millennium, Russia and Ukraine were so deeply intertwined that the boundaries between the two countries often appeared blurred. Two decades later, Russia and…

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PUTIN'S ALTERNATIVE HISTORY

People see events differently, but there are certain criteria in the civilized world, and in historiography, in particular, suggested or generally accepted frameworks for respecting sources and interpreting them reasonably by researchers and scholars who work with them. This apparently does not apply to Muscovites or Russians who have a legacy of disinformation dating back to the czars. Czarina Catherine II in the XVIII century commissioned her subordinate scholars to write a revised history of the empire from the cradle in order to justify the empire’s existence and its role. The czarina found herself an empress. The history written to…

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НАУКА ДЛЯ НАС УКРАЇНЦІВ — АФГАНІСТАН

Мимо то, що при цій аналізі і порівнянню є багато відмінностей, а особливо це, що у випадку захисту України передусім наголос на суверенність і територіальну цілісність держави,а Афганістан це в основі не справа суверенності, а державного ладу, бо по суті це горожанська війна у Афганістані, чи гірше основана на екстремізмі релігії та авторитаризмі замість демократії та релігійної вільності. Вихід відносно соромливий США з Афганістану показав одну істину як Республіканську так і Демократичну. Америка стратила не тільки мільярди доларів на протязі 20 років а також…

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THE WEST MUST NOT FORCE A RUSSIAN “PEACE” ON UKRAINE

Ever since the start of Russian military aggression against Ukraine more than seven years ago, the democratic world has consistently voiced its solidarity with Ukraine. The most recent example of this backing came following US President Joe Biden’s June 16 summit with Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, when the American leader reiterated his unwavering support for “the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine.” However, on the same day, Putin also stated, “If I understood President Biden correctly, he agrees that any settlement in southeastern Ukraine must be based on the Minsk agreements.” These two positions are irreconcilable. The..

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ОСОБИСТІ РОЗДУМИ ПРО ТРИДЦЯТЬ РОКІВ НЕЗАЛЕЖНОСТІ

Це емоційний радісний час! Зрештою, це свято Воскресіння довго переслідуваного народу, Весна давнього народу, який у минулому мав велику славу, але також незрівнянні трагедії. Ніщо не є настільки прекрасним, як у словах поета Олександра Олеся “Відродження країни”, нарешті зарекомендувати себе господарем своєї землі з великою надією, що це назавжди, відновити те, що колись було своїм, але втрачене через злочинність інших. Випробування і труднощі, болі перших кроків розвитку, забуваємо про них хоча б на один день. Сьогодні вони є просто незручністю, з якою треба боротися, починаючи вже завтра. Дійсно, чудово жити у цей час, хоча не можна не відчувати…

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ВОЯЖ ЗЕЛЕНСЬКОГО ДО США І ПИТАННЯ КОЛОМОЙСЬКОГО

Зеленський збирається до Сполучених Штатів. На кону, немало-небагато, майбутнє наших відносин. А відносини зіпсовані. Маємо парадоксальну ситуацію: США і Україна – союзники. І дружні, як держави. Зеленський і Байден – не друзі. Найбільше тому, що в Офісі президента ще рік тому нашіптували Зеленському підтримувати Трампа. Тому що на минулорічній травневій конференції Зеленський явно та іронічно симпатизував “викривателям світової корупції” Андрію Деркачу та Костянтину Кулику, які втягнули країну в черговий скандал з “плівками”. Причому від Деркача слід йшов до Москви, а Кулик – людина пов’язана з Ігорем Коломойським. Це ще один камінь в одвічну суперечку про роль особистості в…

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HOW CAN UKRAINE VANQUISH RUSSIA ON THE THEOCRACY CHESSBOARD?

Granting Autocephaly to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in 2019 not only had a strong impact on Ukrainian society’s rethinking of traditional religious symbols – and their role in the pursuit of national identity – but also, not surprisingly, it revealed the secular and clerical sides of Ukraine’s socio-political environment. The scheduled August visit of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople – the first among equals in the Orthodox Christian world – to Kyiv during Ukraine’s 30th-anniversary celebrations of independence, has become even more important as provocations by supporters of the so-called “Russky Mir” have increased ahead of Bartholomew’s visit. Their aim is to destabilize Ukrainian society and prove that…

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WESTERN STATES ARE DUPLICITOUS TOWARDS THE MEMBERSHIP OF UKRAINE IN NATO

Western states do not want to let Ukraine into the European Union and NATO, said Vadim Karasev, Ukrainian political expert. Speaking to Ukraine 24 TV channel, Vadim Karasev said that European powers, especially Germany and France, do not have any intention to accelerate the membership of Ukraine in the European Union and NATO. According to him, Germany and France are not ready to recognize Ukraine as a part of the West because of its military power. “They believe that in case Ukraine becomes a member of NATO, it will lead to the creation of Eastern European military power, even its…

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ON HISTORICAL UNITY IN A PRISON OF NATIONS: UKRAINE’S INSTITUTE OF NATIONAL REMEMBRANCE HEAD STRIKES BACK AT PUTIN

In July, the article “On the historical unity of Russians and Ukrainians”, signed by Vladimir Putin, was published on the official website of the Russian president, in Russian and Ukrainian. In its 5000+ words, Putin repeats the main theses of Russia’s imperial anti-Ukrainian propaganda, such as that there exists a “primordial unity of Russians, Ukrainians, and Belarusians” and that Russia’s neighbors are destined to doom outside of an alliance with Russia. Anton Drobovych, head of the Ukrainian Institute of National Remembrance, asymmetrically strikes back with a comprehensive analysis of how Moscow exterminates not only national movements but the very identities of its indigenous nations. The article was published in Ukrainian and Tatar, the…

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SUMMING UP 30 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

Despite incredible achievements, there is much for Ukraine to worry about as it approaches its 30th anniversary of independence. Most worrisome is President Vladimir Putin’s determination to rape it. Will the West help or watch? For some 70 years prior to independence – Aug 24, 1991 — it was part of the Soviet empire subservient to Russia’s de facto dictatorship. Although Ukraine provided much of the leadership and brainpower, its global recognition was negligible. Achievements like space rocketry, industrial and agricultural prowess continued to bolster Russia as had been the case for some 300 prior years of czardom. These centuries were marked with ongoing insurrections and insurgencies of liberation by Ukrainians. In his recent…

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COUNTERING PUTIN’S PASSPORT POLICIES IN UKRAINE

Russian President Vladimir Putin’s recent essay, “On the historical unity of Russians and Ukrainians,” offered nothing entirely new, but it did serve as a chilling reminder that Russia remains fundamentally opposed to Ukrainian statehood. The arguments outlined in Putin’s article make clear that the seven-year undeclared war between the two nations is likely to continue indefinitely, while also underlining the imperial objectives driving Russian strategy towards Ukraine. In recent years, Kremlin efforts to undermine Ukrainian sovereignty have expanded to include the distribution of Russian passports in areas of eastern Ukraine currently occupied by Moscow’s proxies. The Ukrainian authorities and the international community are …

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ON CRIMINAL VANDALISM: A RESPONSE TO THE ‘FRIENDS OF THE SIMON WIESENTHAL CENTER’

With respect to acts of criminal vandalism perpetrated against several Ukrainian monuments and memorials across Canada, and a press release from the American-based ‘Simon Wiesenthal Center for Holocaust Studies,’ Roman Zakaluzny, representing the Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties Association, observed: “There is compelling evidence to show that KGB operatives deliberately stoked tensions between Jews and Ukrainians during the Soviet period, circulating disinformation about what happened during the Second World War to provoke discord. Those efforts were carried forward by agents of the…

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PERSONAL REFLECTIONS ON THIRTY YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

This is an exhilarating emotional time! It is, after all, a celebration of the Resurrection of a much persecuted people, the proverbial Spring of an old nation which has experienced glory in the past as well as incomparable tragedy. Nothing is as wonderful as at long last establishing oneself as master of one’s own land with great hope for the duration, retrieving what was once ours but lost because of the criminality of others. Trials and tribulations, growing pains, forget them at least for a single day. They are merely an…

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WHAT NEXT FOR NORD STREAM TWO? THE LEGAL BATTLE IN EUROPE BEGINS

The Nord Stream Two saga is far from over. Although the agreement between the United States and Germany would allow for the physical completion of this natural gas pipeline (directly linking Russia and Germany via the Baltic Sea), its certification and especially its future operation at full capacity are far from certain. In fact, even if certified, the pipeline may have to operate at half capacity as a result of the final decision of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) that limits Gazprom’s usage of the onshore Ostsee-Pipeline-Anbindungsleitung (OPAL), which connects to Nord Stream One, to 50 percent (Interfax, July 15). The court essentially upheld the notion of energy solidarity among European Union members as a binding legal principle, which…

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SOMEONE IS FAKING THE POSITIONS OF NATO WARSHIPS AT SEA. IT REEKS OF RUSSIA.

An ongoing disinformation campaign is causing a worldwide ship location and navigation system to falsely identify the whereabouts of western warships. The Automatic Identification System (AIS) is designed to enhance safety at sea, but it looks like Russia is weaponizing it to make western navies appear more provocative than they really are. The results are “evidence” meant to embarrass the navies of NATO and Sweden, and falsified data meant to back up Russian claims of territorial violations at sea. The Automatic Identification System was conceived of in the 2000s to help mariners keep track of the…

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RUSSIA MELTS DOWN: U.S. RIGGED OLYMPICS TO STEAL OUR GOLDS

Russia’s decades-long dominance in rhythmic gymnastics was shattered at this year’s Tokyo Olympics, where Russian athletes failed to win the Olympic gold in the individual all-around event for the first time since 1996. In Sunday’s group competition, Russia didn’t win gold either, losing to Bulgaria. Since authoritarian countries cherish Olympic competitions as a tool to inflame nationalist sentiments and promote their countries’ global standing, Russia’s defeats were loudly rejected by a host of pro-Kremlin voices—who resorted to state media’s time-honored tradition of conspiracy-mongering. Experts on Russian state television have been trying to…

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AFTER 2014 DECIMATION, UKRAINIAN NAVY REBUILDS TO FEND OFF RUSSIA

When Russia annexed Crimea from Ukraine in 2014, it absorbed land and people. But in the process, and with less attention, Russia also took 75 percent of Ukraine’s naval fleet, the majority of its helicopters and the bulk of the country’s ship repair capacity. With Sevastopol Naval Base gone, the Ukrainian Navy essentially needed to start from scratch. Seventy percent of naval personnel either defected or were dismissed, and the fleet was now just one frigate — a ship that had been deployed at the time. Since then, the United States, the United Kingdom and other NATO members have guided the Black Sea nation to…

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THE MAN AND THE NATION NOBODY EXPECTED: ANDREI SHEPTYTSKYI AND UKRAINE

Out of the ruins of the Austro-Hungarian Empire emerged Ukraine, a nation nobody expected. Equally unexpected was the nobleman who dedicated his life to the creation of an independent, sovereign Ukraine and the reconciliation of Eastern and Western Christian Churches. His causes remain today as controversial as they were back in his day. History knows providential people. History remembers people, who correspond with their very nature to what a nation and a culture needs at a given point in time in history. The recent movie about Joan of Arc (“Jeanne”, dir. by Bruno Dumont, 2019) shows how an uneducated village girl felt and embodied the passionate need of the French for liberation. Coming from a very different…

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UKRAINE'S FIRST BLACK LAWMAKER IS NOW ALSO ITS FIRST GOLD MEDALIST IN TOKYO

Zhan Beleniuk takes his job pretty seriously. He’s Ukraine’s first Black lawmaker and the first deputy head of the Committee on Youth and Sports in parliament. “The main goal is to develop sports in Ukraine, the sports movement, so that our nation could be healthy, athletic and show good results in the international arena,” he said in a 2019 interview. On Wednesday he led by example, competing in the Greco-Roman 87-kilogram wrestling event at the Olympics and taking home the gold — the first for Ukraine at the Tokyo Games. Beleniuk beat out Viktor Lorincz of Hungary 5-1 to win his…

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HOW A UNIVERSITY IN LVIV HAS REVOLUTIONIZED HIGHER EDUCATION IN UKRAINE

Ukraine endured a series of hardships after the Revolution of Dignity in 2013. Thousands have died from the Russian military incursion into eastern Ukraine, and millions are displaced. The coronavirus pandemic has also heavily impacted this Eastern European state. Over 50,000 Ukrainians have died from the disease, and Ukraine’s GDP has significantly declined. Most recently, Ukraine was stunned by its Western allies when the United States and Germany announced that they had resolved their differences on Nord Stream 2. Amidst these challenges, however, lies an under-reported success story. Despite the…

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WILL THE EU SHAKE OFF ITS LETHARGY OVER THE PROTRACTED CONFLICTS IN THE BLACK SEA REGION?

The European Union is undertaking initial exploratory steps following Romania’s proposals to support the EU’s Eastern Partnership (EaP) countries affected by protracted (“frozen”) conflicts (see Parts One and Two in EDM, July 29 and August 4). At Bucharest’s initiative, co-sponsored by ten like-minded EU member states, the EU’s High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy Josep Borrell mandated a Romanian-led visit by…

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HOW AMERICANS FORGOT COMMUNISM

When communism collapsed in Europe 30 years ago, it seemed vanquished. The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics turned out to be none of those things and broke into 15 independent countries. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, McDonald’s replaced Marx, and no one argued anymore that real communism still hadn’t been tried. But old, familiar ideas are making a comeback on both sides of what used to be a great ideological divide. In Russia, Josef Stalin’s approval rating recently reached an all-time high. Meanwhile, American millennials’ stated approval of communism and socialism has been steadily…

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APPEASEMENT IS MORALLY WRONG AND POLITICALLY SHORTSIGHTED

Ambassador Kurt Volcker was U.S. Ambassador to NATO and U.S. Special Representative to Ukraine on a voluntary basis. He recently commented on Ukraine’s accession to NATO membership. According to him, the Membership Action Plan which he was instrumental in formulating in 1999 is essentially irrelevant for Ukraine since Ukraine has to date complied with all reforms required under MAP. This is a most significant comment since Ambassador Volcker knows better than President Joe Biden or President Emmanuel Macron or Chancellor Angela Merkel whether Ukraine is a legitimate and ready candidate for NATO membership. Unfortunately, it also means that President Biden’s comment in response to a reporter’s question following the…

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ЗАМИРЕННЯ МОРАЛЬНО НЕПРАВИЛЬНЕ І ПОЛІТИЧНО НЕДАЛЕКОГЛЯДНЕ

Посол Курт Волкер був послом США в НАТО та спеціальним представником США в Україні на добровільних засадах. Він нещодавно прокоментував приєднання України до членства в НАТО. За його словами, План дій щодо членства, до речі він відіграв важливу роль у формулюванні цього у 1999 році, по суті не має значення для України, оскільки Україна на сьогодні має завершені всі реформи, необхідні за ПДЧ. Це важливий коментар, оскільки посол Волкер краще за президента Джо Байдена чи президента Еммануеля Макрона чи канцлера Ангелу Меркель знає, чи є Україна відповідним та готовим кандидатом на вступ до НАТО. На жаль, це також означає, що коментар президента Байдена у відповідь на…

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UKRAINIAN LIBRARY REINVENTS ITSELF FOR A NEW AGE

A youth library in Kherson shows the way to thriving in uncertain times as an educational and literary hub for the local community and wider region. Virtually every city, village, and district in Ukraine has a public library, around 15,000 in all for this country of 42 million people. While that means a library is almost always close by, most people hardly notice them, especially as access to a vast range of resources on the internet constantly grows. Yet in the port city of Kherson in southern Ukraine, one award-winning library is bucking the trend. The Borys Lavrenyov Regional Library for Youth has managed to…

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TIME TO REMIND RUSSIA THAT CRIMEA IS UKRAINE

Since February 2014, Ukraine’s Crimean peninsula has been under Russian occupation. The Kremlin initially attempted to justify its military aggression by stage-managing a fig leaf referendum at gunpoint, but the international community was not fooled. Instead, virtually every country on the planet, except for Russia itself and Moscow’s few remaining rogue state allies, continues to recognize Crimea as an integral part of Ukraine. In the coming weeks, Ukraine will remind the international community of the Russian occupation by hosting the inaugural summit of the Crimean Platform. The Crimean Platform is a new…

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СКУ ПІДТВЕРДЖУЄ ПІДТРИМКУ НАЦІОНАЛЬНОГО ІСТОРИКО-МЕМОРІАЛЬНОГО ЗАПОВІДНИКА «БАБИН ЯР»

Напередодні відзначення 80-х роковин трагедії Бабиного Яру, Світовий Конґрес Українців готовий надати понад 20 мільйонів доларів США на підтримку Національного історико-меморіального заповідника «Бабин Яр», розробленого Інститутом історії України Національної Академії Наук України. Видатний український громадський діяч і філантроп зобов’язався виділити щонайменше 20 мільйонів доларів для підтримки цього проєкту пам’яті. Крім того, СКУ очікує отримати додаткові зобов’язання від інших благодійників на підтримку цього проєкту меморіалізації. Російські та радянські наративи спотворювали історію України, неправдиво зображаючи українців злочинцями, а не…

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UWC PLEDGES SUPPORT FOR NATIONAL BABYN YAR MEMORIAL PROJECT

In the leadup to the 80th anniversary commemoration of the Babyn Yar tragedy, the Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) has pledged over $20M to support the realization of a National Babyn Yar Museum and Memorial Complex as authored by the Historical Institute of the Academy of Sciences. A prominent Ukrainian community philanthropist has committed to no less than $20M and the UWC expects to receive further commitments from other donors to support this memorialization project. The Russian and Soviet narratives have distorted Ukraine’s history by wrongly painting its people as perpetrators rather than victims of Nazi atrocities. To safeguard Ukraine’s history from political manipulations and disinformation, key memorial projects such as…

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HOW UKRAINE CAN PUSH BACK AGAINST VLADIMIR PUTIN’S TWISTED HISTORY

The article recently published by Vladimir Putin on the historical unity of Russians and Ukrainians has provoked many responses, most of them grim and alarming. I hope to offer here something different and a bit lighter, but only after I acknowledge that there is good cause for alarm. The meat of Putin’s long propaganda tract is in its closing section, where Putin attempts to justify his invasions and occupations of Crimea and southeastern Ukraine in two thousand words of spitting venom and brazenly false accusations aimed at Ukraine’s political leaders, before warning that their “anti-Russia project” will “destroy their country.” Although the accusations featured in Putin’s essay had all been previously aired on multiple occasions by…

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МІСЦЕ ЄВГЕНА КОНОВАЛЬЦЯ В ІСТОРІЇ УКРАЇНИ

Місце Євгена Коновальця в історії України визначене його смертю: він упав жертвою підступного вбивства, організовано з наказу Москви. У Москві немає звичаю вбивати незначних противників. Наказане нею вбивство Євгена Коновальця засвідчує, що він був таким політичним противником, якого треба було ліквідувати, або точніше -він стояв у кермі такої політичної сили, яка представляла велику загрозу для Москви, для панування Росії над Україною. Цією силою була Організація Українських Націоналістів (ОУН). Немає потреби описувати обставини створення ОУН. Нагадаємо лише, що…

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US-GERMAN GAS DEAL IS A DISSERVICE TO UKRAINE

Last month, President Vladimir Putin published a sinister, 6,900-word article insisting Russians and Ukrainians are “one people”, which appeared to open the door to further intervention by Russia in its neighbour. Days later, the Biden administration reached an agreement with Berlin allowing completion of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline — which poses a serious security and economic threat to Ukraine — in return for flimsy assurances and compensation for Kyiv. The “deal” — in reality, just a statement — does a grave disservice to Ukraine. Nord Stream has always been at root a geopolitical project. It will give Russia capacity to deliver almost all its current gas exports to western Europe under the Baltic Sea direct to Germany, circumventing the…

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A JOINT STATEMENT IN OPPOSITION TO THE COMPLETION OF THE NORD STREAM 2 PIPELINE

The Chair of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and his counterparts from Czechia, Estonia, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom, issued a joint statement in opposition to the completion of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline The Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA), the representative organization of the nearly 2 million Americans of Ukrainian descent, is extremely pleased and thankful to U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, for his continued leadership in opposing the Nord Stream 2 pipeline…

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LETTER TO HER EXCELLENCY MICHELLE BACHELET

Dear Madame Bachelet: I am a former main representative of the Ukrainian World Congress, a NGO in consultative status with the UN ECOSOC. I write specifically regarding the plight of civil society within the Russian Federation and more precisely the peril facing the Ukrainian ethnic civil society within the RF. This is a matter of severe persecution regarding a segment of civil society, their religious and ethnic rights, their very existence. Historically Russia in all its permutations from village to empire, to the Soviet Union and now…

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DOES UKRAINE EXIST?

Putin doesn’t think so. In mid July, Russian caudillo Vladimir Putin published a remarkable essay in which he argued that Ukraine does not, in some important sense, exist. Later this month, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky will visit Washington to remind President Joe Biden that it does. Putin’s essay is, in its redundant way, a declaration of war. He insists that there is no such thing as a Ukrainian people (“We are one people,” he writes — in fact, a “triune people,” with the Belarusians also thrown into the mix), that the Ukrainian state is illegitimate and acts against the interests of its citizens because…

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NORD STREAM 2: RUSSIA ACTIVELY TRYING TO CIRCUMVENT SANCTIONS, UKRAINE INTELLIGENCE SAYS

Russia is desperately trying to circumvent economic sanctions imposed on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, Ukraine’s Foreign Intelligence Service warns as the Kremlin seeks to complete as soon as possible its notorious project posing a major threat to the European energy security. In this regard, SZRU intelligence analysts have highlighted several directions Russia is pursuing. 1. Temporary (until project completion) change of ownership in companies involved in the project to evade sanctions. As an example, SZRU notes the Academic Chersky pipe-laying vessel for…

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UKRAINE IS PART OF THE WEST – NATO AND THE EU SHOULD TREAT IT THAT WAY

Since the dissolution of the Soviet Union in November 1991, the area that extends from central Europe to central Asia has been commonly referred to as the “post-Soviet space.” The label has always been problematic—and 30 years after its introduction, the time to retire it has come. The term misleadingly implies a degree of political, social, and economic coherence among a diverse set of countries that includes my own, Ukraine. Even more worrying, its use encourages policymakers and publics outside this geography to see the countries within it through a single lens. This reductive approach serves the Kremlin’s imperialistic aims. Russian President Vladimir Putin spares no effort to promote the false historical narrative that Ukrainians and Russians constitute “one nation”; his…

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HISTORICAL MEMORY IN A TIME OF WAR

By profession I am a historian who was raised and educated in the United States, and who has taught the history of Ukraine for over four decades at the University of Toronto in Canada. I come to you, then, as someone who has developed a professional and personal love and appreciation for the rich cultural heritage that your ancestors created on this beautiful land called Ukraine. Since becoming an independent state in 1991, Ukraine has made itself much better known throughout the world. While it is true that by now many people have heard the name Ukraine, they nonetheless know very little…

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OLYMPIC INVADERS

It’s bad enough that the Tokyo Olympics fined female athletes for refusing to dress like pole dancers. But nothing beats the fact that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has allowed the world’s champion sports doping culprit and superpower pariah – Russia – to compete at the Tokyo Games in contravention of a four-year ban for handing out performance-enhancing drugs to Russian athletes like they were aspirins. An investigation into this criminality began in 2014 after Sochi, and in 2019 Russia was officially banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency. A Russian whistleblower had come…

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WILL THE EU SHAKE OFF ITS LETHARGY OVER THE PROTRACTED CONFLICTS IN THE BLACK SEA REGION?

Romania’s minister of foreign affairs, Bogdan Aurescu, is spearheading an initiative within the European Union to involve the EU in the management and eventual resolution of the protracted conflicts in the wider Black Sea region. Ten other EU member states (Portugal, Sweden and eight Central-Eastern European countries) co-sponsored Romania’s initiative. The objects of this initiative are defined as the conflicts ongoing in Moldova (Transnistria), Georgia (Abkhazia and South Ossetia), Azerbaijan (Karabakh) and Ukraine (Donbas). Nowhere is Russia’s involvement mentioned explicitly in the.

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CHAIRPERSONS OF THE FOREIGN AFFAIRS COMMITTEES STATEMENT ON NORD STREAM 2

The Chairs of the Foreign Affairs Committees of the Parliaments of Estonia, Czech Republic, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, the United Kingdom and Ukraine stated, “We, the Chairs of Foreign Affairs Committees of our respective national parliaments, are deeply disturbed by the decision of the United States and Germany on Nord Stream 2, which entails resuming completion of works on the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. We consider Nord Stream 2 a geopolitical project geared towards expanding Russia’s geostrategic influence on Europe by dominating the energy market. The completion of the pipeline will strengthen the impact of Russian gas in the European energy mix, endanger the national security of the EU and the United States, and threaten the already precarious security and…

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IN NORD STREAM 2 FIGHT, UKRAINE GIVES EU TASTE OF ITS OWN BUREAUCRACY

It was a bold, bureaucratic retort to a geopolitical provocation that would make the wonkiest, most wizened Brussels civil servant proud: After the U.S. and Germany announced a deal last week on Russia’s controversial Nord Stream 2 gas project, Ukraine yanked out its 2,135-page Association Agreement with the EU, and invoked two provisions to demand urgent consultations with the European Commission and the German government. Theoretically, such discussions would give Ukraine a forum to insist on sanctions to prevent the pipeline from ever operating, or to demand higher financial compensation than Washington and Berlin have offered, along…

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WHY IS BIDEN LETTING PUTIN WIN?

This month, Vladimir Putin’s pet project, the $11 billion Nord Stream 2 pipeline, was approved by the White House and Germany’s Chancellery against the wishes of the European Union, NATO, the EU energy policy, the US Congress, and Germany’s neighbors. Worse, the two signed a mushy agreement to keep Russia in line and prevent it from coercing Ukraine or Europe as a result of its energy monopoly, but didn’t require Russia to sign it. In other words, the deal is unenforceable. This shocking diplomatic development is upsetting to those of us, and neighboring nation-states, who have supported Ukraine’s efforts to finally free itself from…

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TOP PROSECUTOR WHO INVESTIGATED RUSSIA’S WAR CRIMES RESIGNS UNDER PRESSURE

The Kyiv Post reported, “Gyunduz Mamedov, a deputy prosecutor general backed by civil society, has resigned due to pressure from Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova, Miller, the law firm that represents Mamedov, said on July 26. Mamedov was responsible for prosecuting war crimes committed in the Russian-occupied Crimea and Donbas from 2016 until June 2021, when Venediktova took the cases away from him. The Prosecutor General’s Office did not respond to a request for comment. ‘The leadership of the Prosecutor General’s Office has…

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BIDEN’S SURRENDER TO MERKEL ON NORD STREAM 2

Bipartisan opposition to the Nord Stream 2 pipeline was a cornerstone of the foreign policies of both the Obama and Trump administrations, an unambiguous response to Russia’s annexation of Crimea and the Kremlin’s record of using gas deliveries as a weapon of coercion in Eastern Europe. The recent decision by the Biden administration to reverse the policy of its predecessors and to refrain from sanctioning participants in the pipeline project is nothing but a capitulation to pressure from Germany and a gift to Russian President Vladimir Putin. The damage to American national interest will be profound. If the administration’s goal was to rebuild trans-Atlantic ties, its embrace of Nord Stream 2 is a clear misfire. Even in Germany, opposition to the pipeline has been growing. The German Green party, which is…

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PUTIN’S THREATS TO UKRAINE A WAKE-UP CALL

White House meetings with foreign leaders are a carefully choreographed diplomatic dance. And the newly scheduled meeting between President Biden and President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine is surely meant to send the right message at the right time — not just to Ukraine but to Russia’s Vladimir Putin. It will, however, take more than warm handshakes and a tete-a-tete in the Oval Office on Aug. 30 to get the US-Ukraine relationship back on solid footing and to reassure this democratic ally, now facing renewed existential threats from the Kremlin, that the alliance remains steadfast. Putin, who managed to annex Crimea from Ukraine in 2014 and openly backs “separatists” claiming a large part of eastern Ukraine, last week in a lengthy article insisted that Russians and Ukrainians are…

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A GREEN LIGHT FOR RUSSIAN HEGEMONY

The Biden administration is lifting its opposition to Russia’s Nord Stream 2 undersea pipeline, according to a joint US-German announcement last week. This decision gives Russia’s President Vladimir Putin his Holy Grail: a Europe fueled by Russian energy. Even better, Putin will give up nothing in return. Instead, he can continue his aggressive posture in the Black Sea and his threats to Ukraine’s statehood. Ukraine will lose transit fees and, more important, the geopolitical protection of Russian gas transiting to Europe via its territory. Although Nord Stream 2 was built expressly to bypass Ukraine, Ukraine is supposed to believe German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s promise that…

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THE BIDEN-MERKEL KISS OF DEATH

Following up on the worst “deal” so far of the century – the Washington-Berlin “compromise” on Nord Stream 2 — here are a few more comments: The shock and the outrage that this arrogant, ill-conceived, and unceremoniously delivered attempted “force majeure” by Berlin and Washington has, not surprisingly, had a boomerang effect. From Kyiv and Warsaw, via Brussels, Paris, and London, to Washington itself, there is a sense of shock and outrage, some overt, and much of it tactfully being expressed behind the scenes. Of having been, not…

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SEVEN REASONS WHY THE USA AND EU LOST TO THE NORD STREAM 2 LOBBYISTS

In a way, Ukraine was very successful in opposing Nord Stream 2, because no other similar project of Gazprom — neither the “Blue Stream,” nor “South Stream,” nor “Nord Stream,” nor “Turkish Stream” — received such an international resonance as Nord Stream 2. Yet, despite all the efforts, the Kremlin’s lobbyists won. Here is why. There is no point in analyzing the work of German and American lobbyists of the Kremlin’s Nord Stream-2 project, which was greenlighted by the US-German agreementhastily drafted and skillfully carried out through the circles of the establishment in Washington DC. Although it is disguised by…

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HOW UKRAINE CAN STILL DEFEAT NORD STREAM 2

The US-German deal on the Nord Stream 2 pipeline means Ukraine’s defeat in the battle, but not the war against Russia’s expanding energy stranglehold on Europe, say Ukrainian experts. Here are the top things Ukraine and its Western partners should do now. Mykhailo Gonchar, President of the Center for Global Studies “Strategy XXI,” provides eight steps Ukraine and the West should take: 1. The Polish-Lithuanian-Ukrainian cooperation in countering Putin’s pipelines should be aimed at working with the US Congress in order not only at restoring the sanctions on Nord Stream 2, but also at expanding them. The three countries also have the opportunity to guide the US authorities in investigating the activities of third-party organizations that seek to harm US national interests and their relations with strategic partners in Europe. 2. Ukraine should initiate consultations with the…

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DEAL BETWEEN GERMANY AND THE US ON NORD STREAM 2

On 21 July, the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the US State Department issued a Joint Statement of the United States and Germany on Support for Ukraine, European Energy Security, and our Climate Goals. The statement presents the arrangements made by Berlin and Washington on the conditions for the effective withdrawal of US opposition to the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. News agencies and the US press had already reported the deal’s outline. On the same day, the date for the Ukrainian president’s visit to Washington (30 August) was announced. Chancellor Angela Merkel had a telephone conversation with the President of Russia in the…

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СВІДОЦТВО

Ось свідоцтво першого півріччя президента Байдена. У ньому є досить спокійна перепочинка з турбулентними днями Трампа (думаю, 6 січня), не обов’язково рясніючими досягненнями, але, принаймні, було мало гримаси під час прес-конференцій. Джо Байден був Джо Байденом, дещо нудним із помилками, але здебільшого зв’язним в артикуляції, навіть показуючи словниковий запас, що вимагає словника, членами кошика жалюгідних (не ображайся, у мене в цьому кошику є члени родини) та його носієм. Найважливіші пункти найближчого порядку денного були розглянуті адекватно шляхом щеплень, незважаючи на спротив та…

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PUTIN’S FIXATION ON UKRAINE IS DEMAGOGIC, DELUSIONAL AND DANGEROUS

World leaders rarely publish their visions of current affairs in the form of essays, but President Vladimir Putin developed a habit since returning to the Kremlin in 2012. His latest treatise, “On the Historical Unity of Russians and Ukrainians,” stands out among his other works representing this vast body of literature. Instead of submitting it to a Russian or Western media platform (German Die Zeit was the most recent periodical), he published it directly on the Kremlin website, explaining further that this “analytical material” was “more than just an article” (Kremlin.ru, July 13). The lengthy historical narrative is as…

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GERMAN-US DEAL ON NORDSTREAM 2 PIPELINE FAILS TO BRIDGE EUROPEAN DIVIDES

A bilateral deal between Washington and Berlin over the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline from Russia to Germany, struck in the aftermath of German chancellor Angela Merkel’s visit to the White House last week, has failed to bridge deep-seated divides in Europe over the pipeline or placate critics who say it is a geopolitical weapon that the Kremlin will use to undermine Ukraine and increase its leverage over EU energy supplies. Set to begin operations later this year, Nord Stream 2 will pump 55bn cubic meters of gas under the Baltic Sea, allowing Kremlin-controlled gas exporter Gazprom to reach customers in Germany and elsewhere in Europe without using pipelines running through Ukraine…

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UKRAINE HITS BACK AS US, GERMANY REACH DEAL ON NORD STREAM 2

The U.S. and Germany reached a deal Wednesday on a controversial gas pipeline between Russia and Europe, seeking to placate critics in Washington and Central and Eastern Europe who fear it will mainly benefit Moscow. But Kyiv isn’t having it. Ukraine has demanded formal talks with Brussels and Berlin on the pipeline, known as Nord Stream 2, invoking a clause of its agreement with the EU on political association and economic integration. Kyiv’s foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, also sent a joint statement with his counterpart in Poland, saying efforts to allay their concerns “cannot be considered sufficient.”…

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BIDEN CAVES, GIVES PUTIN ANOTHER PIPELINE TO EUROPE

The Biden administration announced on Wednesday that it has dropped its opposition to the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline between Russia and Germany as part of a deal with Berlin. The change in policy is indefensible—on its substance, the process behind it, the politics surrounding it, and the effects it will have on European and American security. First, some background: The original Nord Stream pipeline, which went into service a decade ago, connects Russia to Germany directly under the Baltic Sea, allowing Russia’s semigovernmental gas monopoly, Gazprom, to sell…

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UKRAINE'S CONTRIBUTION TO VICTORY IN WORLD WAR II IS UNSURPASSED

Ukraine paid the biggest price for victory in the Second World War. As a vital contributor to the Red Army and a key provider of industrial resources in the USSR, Ukraine incurred the largest number of casualties during WWII. Russia has claimed the victory for itself and has officially denied the Ukrainian role in the fight against the Nazis. The real number of victims during WWII is still not fully known. Some relevant data is still held in Russian archives and is not available for non-Russian researchers. However, of the 41.7 million people living in the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic before the war, only 27.4 million were alive in Ukraine in 1945. Official data says that at least 8 million Ukrainians lost their lives: 5.5 – 6 million civilians, and…

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HOW BIDEN CAN HELP UKRAINE

After surrendering ground to Moscow in the hope that Vladimir Putin would respect the independence of neighboring states, President Joe Biden now has an opportunity to strengthen the security of Russia’s primary victim. Ukraine. During the visit of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to the White House, Biden needs to announce a concrete action plan and not simply issue the customary verbal support. In recent weeks, the U.S. administration has made several missteps over gas pipelines, naval power, and cybersecurity that enable Putin to claim the upper hand. For a start, Washington allowed the…

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U.S., GERMANY REACH DEAL ON NORD STREAM PIPELINE AS CONGRESS VOICES OPPOSITION

The United States and Germany say they have reached an agreement to allow the completion of Nord Stream 2, the controversial Russian gas pipeline to Europe that opponents say undermines the energy security of Ukraine and other Eastern and Central European countries. The Biden administration is expected to face strong pushback over the deal from Congress, which has twice passed sanctions legislation to stop the project with overwhelming bipartisan support. In a joint statement on July 21, the United States and Germany said they have agreed on a package of measures, including the…

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JOINT STATEMENT

The decision to build Nord Stream 2 made in 2015 mere months after Russia’s invasion and illegal annexation of Ukrainian territory, created a security, credibility and political crisis in Europe. Currently, this crisis is significantly deepened by the resignation from attempts to stop the launch of the NS2 gas pipeline. This decision has created a political, military and energy threat for Ukraine and Central Europe, while increasing Russia’s potential to destabilize the security situation in Europe, perpetuating divisions among NATO and European Union member states…

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WHY RUSSIA AND UKRAINE ARE LIKELY HEADED FOR WAR

Russian president Vladimir Putin’s six-thousand-word article on Ukraine lays the ideological groundwork for a possible future war with Ukraine. A Russian military incursion or another form of security action against Ukraine would lead to the biggest crisis in relations between the West and Russia since the 1962 Cuban missile crisis and would have unforeseen consequences for Russia, Ukraine, Eurasia, and Central-Eastern Europe. Ukraine is not Moldova or Georgia where Russian forces intervened in the early 1990s and 2008, respectively. It is a huge country in terms of territory. Tiraspol and South Ossetia are close to Chisinau and Tbilisi whereas Donetsk is 750 km from Kyiv. Invading and then subduing Ukraine would be practically impossible and…

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US URGES UKRAINE TO STAY QUIET ON RUSSIAN PIPELINE

In the midst of tense negotiations with Berlin over a controversial Russia-to-Germany pipeline, the Biden administration is asking a friendly country to stay quiet about its vociferous opposition. And Ukraine is not happy. U.S. officials have signaled that they’ve given up on stopping the project, known as the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, and are now scrambling to contain the damage by striking a grand bargain with Germany. At the same time, administration officials have quietly urged their Ukrainian counterparts to withhold criticism of a forthcoming agreement with Germany involving the pipeline, according to…

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PUTIN WILL LAUGH AT BIDEN AND MERKEL'S FARCICAL NORD STREAM 2 DEAL

With words that do not exactly engender confidence as to its negotiating ability (relevant to the Iran nuclear deal and a new arms control agreement with Russia, for example), the Biden administration appears set to send Vladimir Putin, Nikolai Patrushev, and the Kremlin security elite into hysterics. Putin will have been concerned about the evolving contours of a looming U.S.-Germany deal on how to protect Ukrainian interests following the completion of the Nord Stream 2 energy pipeline. Sanctioned by former President Donald Trump and Congress, but acquiesced to by President Joe Biden, the deal will undercut Ukraine’s economy and Europe’s energy security. Biden and Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany had pledged a deal that would mitigate…

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VENTING

I write this in English to reach my Ukrainian American peers. There is also a Ukrainian language version but that is mostly like preaching to the choir. Mostly, because a similar problem exists in other Ukrainian diaspora communities, French, Belgian, German, Russian and many others. I have been accused, by my own wife no less, of being an angry old man. I acknowledge the angry part but not the old. No, I will not address the subject of genes, health and life expectancy. I have been relatively active in the…

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ВЛАСНЕ ВІДПРУЖЕННЯ

Я писав це англійською мовою, щоб дістатися до моїх однолітків-українців-американців. Є також версія українською мовою, але це здебільшого як проповідування хору. Здебільшого тому, що подібна проблема існує в інших громадах української діаспори, французькій, бельгійській, німецькій, російській та багатьох інших. Моя власна дружина мене звинувачує у тому, що я розгніваний старий. Я визнаю гнівну частину, але не стару. Ні, я не буду звертатися до теми генів, здоров’я та тривалості життя. Я відносно активно працюю в громадi…

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STOP NORD STREAM 2

According to numerous reported sources, the White House is imminently preparing to announce a deal between the United States and Germany regarding Russia’s Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline in the coming days. Presumably citing “U.S. national interests,” any continued waiving of sanctions against the company behind the project — Nord Stream 2 AG and its CEO — would contradict in letter and spirit the intent behind the bipartisan sanctions regime passed by Congress in 2019 and expanded in 2020: preventing the completion of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. The Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA), the representative organization of nearly 2 million Americans of Ukrainian descent, agrees with the United States Congress, the…

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MOSCOW SEIZED CONTROL OF RUSSIAN ÉMIGRÉ GROUP IN US TO PROMOTE KREMLIN POLICIES IN UKRAINE

A month ago, there were reports in the Russian and American media that the FBI was investigating the activities of the Coordination Council of Organizations of Russian Compatriots in the US, reports that the FBI neither confirmed nor denied but that Moscow insisted were part of a US effort to close down the group. In fact, the FBI did speak with some members of the group; but it did not move to shut it down. However, it has now come out that the organization, the product of ordinary émigré activities prior to 2014, was purged by Moscow because its then-leaders refused to support Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and became a branch office of the…

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RUSSIA PUTS SQUEEZE ON EUROPE OVER NORD STREAM 2

Russia is sending a clear message to Europe: Allow the completion of Nord Stream 2 or gas prices will remain high and supplies dangerously low. Following a cold winter in Europe, gas storages in several European countries are at less than 50% capacity. Russian gas giant Gazprom, unwilling to increase gas supplies, has driven gas prices to new highs and sent gas brokers scrambling to seek alternative supply. Russia’s actions are placing pressure on Europe’s leaders to allow the completion of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, which project head Matthias Warnig says will be completed by the end of the summer. With the completion of Nord Stream 2 looming, Ukraine finds itself on the verge of a catastrophe: In bypassing Ukraine, Russia will be able to…

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BIDEN, MERKEL FAIL TO RESOLVE DISPUTES ABOUT NORD STREAM 2 GAS PIPELINE

Merkel said Russia could face EU sanctions if it violated its agreement to continue shipping gas supplies through Ukraine. Biden said he expressed his long-standing concerns to Merkel about the $11 billion pipeline, which would deliver gas from the Arctic to Germany via the Baltic Sea, bypassing Ukraine and depriving it of valuable transit fees. Washington is pressing Germany to find ways to ensure that Russia cannot use the pipeline, which is 98 per cent complete, to harm Ukraine or other allies in Eastern Europe. The project is led by Russian state energy company Gazprom and its Western partners. US and German officials have been working to hammer out a solution that would stave off the resumption of currently waived US sanctions, but…

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MH17 – ЗЛОЧИН, ЩО ЗАЛИШАЄТЬСЯ БЕЗКАРНИМ

Впродовж останніх семи років Російська Федерація покриває злочинців, відповідальних за загибель 17 липня 2014 року 298 невинних жертв рейсу MH17 Малайзійських авіаліній, який прямував з Амстердама до Куала-Лумпур та був збитий на українській території контрольованим Росією зенітно-ракетним комплексом. Міжнародна слідча група, якій доручено встановити причину катастрофи, підтвердила вину Російської Федерації у цьому злочині. Офіційні представники з Нідерландів, Бельгії, Австралії, України та Малайзії дійшли до висновку, що MH17 був збитий ракетою з зенітно-ракетного комплексу «Бук» із сільськогосподарського поля…

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PARLIAMENT PASSES SECOND JUDICIAL REFORM BILL REQUIRED BY IMF

The Verkhovna Rada passed the second reading of a judicial reform bill that would allow foreign experts to take part in firing tainted members of the discredited High Council of Justice and hiring new members. On July 13, parliament also gave foreign experts a crucial role in creating a new High Qualification Commission of Judges, a body that hires and fires judges. Foreign experts’ crucial role in the reform has been a requirement of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the European Commission for Democracy through Law (Venice Commission) and Ukraine’s other foreign partners. In February, the IMF suspended talks with…

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KREMLIN PAPERS APPEAR TO SHOW PUTIN’S PLOT TO PUT TRUMP IN WHITE HOUSE

Vladimir Putin personally authorised a secret spy agency operation to support a “mentally unstable” Donald Trump in the 2016 US presidential election during a closed session of Russia’s national security council, according to what are assessed to be leaked Kremlin documents. The key meeting took place on 22 January 2016, the papers suggest, with the Russian president, his spy chiefs and senior ministers all present. They agreed a Trump White House would help secure Moscow’s strategic objectives, among them “social turmoil” in the US and a weakening of the American president’s negotiating position. Russia’s three spy agencies were…

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METAGENOCIDE: RUSSIA'S CENTURIES OF CONQUEST OF UKRAINIANS GO BEYOND GENOCIDE

While the Holodomor marked the height of Russian genocide against Ukrainians, it was by no means an isolated event. Under Russian rule, Ukrainians were subjected to tyranny that went beyond traditional interpretations of genocide, to what this author terms “metagenocide” – long term ongoing genocide systematically targeting for destruction not just a group of people but also all that defines them as that group. The goal is not just to deny the group’s right to exist, but to deny that it ever existed as a nation in the first place, to wipe it from humanity’s collective memory. Russia’s metagenocide in Ukraine was pervasive…

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СВІТОВИЙ КОНҐРЕС УКРАЇНЦІВ ВИМУШЕНИЙ РОЗІРВАТИ ОФІЦІЙНІ ЗВ’ЯЗКИ З УКРАЇНЦЯМИ В РОСІЇ

13 липня 2021 року, Київ. Світовий Конґрес Українців (СКУ) був вимушений ухвалити рішення призупинити членство усіх своїх складових організацій, а також провідників СКУ у Російській Федерації, щоб захистити українську національну меншину у Росії від репресій. Такий крок став наслідком введення Володимиром Путіним у дію нових драконівських норм, які впроваджують кримінальну відповідальність для російських громадян за зв’язки з так званими “небажаними” організаціями, включно з СКУ. На своєму позачерговому засіданні 10 липня 2021 року Рада Директорів СКУ ухвалила рішення призупинити членство у Світовому Конґресі Українців усіх складових організацій з Російської Федерації, включно з…

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UWC COMPELLED TO SEVER FORMAL TIES WITH UKRAINIANS IN RUSSIA AS RUSSIA

In a move to protect the Ukrainian ethnic minority in Russia, the Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) was compelled to suspend membership of all Ukrainian organizations and UWC leaders in Russia. The move comes after Vladimir Putin enacted draconian laws that impose criminal sanctions on Russian citizens for associating with “undesirable” organizations, including the Ukrainian World Congress At an extraordinary meeting on July 10, 2021, the UWC Board of Directors voted to suspend the membership of all UWC organizations from the Russian Federation (RF), including the Prosvita Far East Ukrainian Spiritual Cultural and Educational Centre in Vladivostok and the Povolzhia Fellowship of Ukrainians in Saratov. This vote came at the request of the…

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PUTIN OFFERING UKRAINE SAME DEAL STALIN OFFERED WEST GERMANY IN 1952, PIONTKOVSKY SAYS

In 1952, Soviet dictator Joseph Stalin offered West German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer a chance for the reunification of Germany. Adenauer would only have to agree that all the institutions the communist east had at the time, such as the Stasi police, the communist party, and the Soviet forces, would remain in place inside a reunited Germany. Adenauer at the time replied that he preferred to remain the chancellor of half of Germany than become a political prisoner of the USSR in a reunited one, Russian political Andrey Piontkovsky says, arguing that the US must see that…

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АЛЬТЕРНАТИВНА ІСТОРІЯ ПУТІНА

Кожна людина може бачити події по різному але все ж таки існує у цивілізованому світі певні критерії, а у історіографії певні рамці пошанування джерел та тлумачення їх дослідниками котрі з ними зустрічаються та працюють. Це очевидно не відноситься до москалів. Ще Цариця Катерина ІІ у ХУІІІ столітті доручила своїм підвладним науковцям написати нову історію імперії від колиски для того, щоби обґрунтувати існування імперії. Подібно сьогодні тільки все немов сам хіба дослідив та проаналізував, виписав під своїм ім’ям авторитарний політик і не менш імперативний новий історик-без диплому з Москви…

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БЕРЛІНСЬКИЙ ВОЯЖ ЗЕЛЕНСЬКОГО: ЗІ ЩИТОМ ЧИ НА ЩИТІ?

Візит Президента Зеленського до Берліну виглядає доволі не традиційно, якщо порівнювати його з іншими подібними заходами найвищого рівня. Зазвичай, під час візитів глави держави, будь-якої країни, застосовується своєрідний джентельменський набір заходів. В першу чергу це зустрічі з главою держави (Президент, король/королева тощо), главою уряду та спікером парламенту. Водночас, як правило, програмою перебування також передбачаються зустрічі з представниками опозиціїйних партій, з бізнесом (найчастіше у форматі бізнес-форуму), а також з діаспорою. Володимир Зеленський цього разу зустрівся лише з Президентом Німеччини, Арміном Лашетом, одним з ймовірних політичних спадкоємців…

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ZELENSKYY MEETS MERKEL IN BERLIN, GETS NO SECURITY GUARANTEES

The Kyiv Post reported, “President Volodymyr Zelenskyy concluded his two-day trip to Berlin on July 12 with an official dinner hosted by German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Zelenskyy had a lot on his plate. The Ukrainian president came to Berlin as a last-minute attempt to stop the construction of the Russian Nord Stream 2 pipeline project and to secure German arms shipment to Ukraine. Both tasks never made it to the table, with Zelenskyy’s visit having a high status, yet little substance. Ukraine was promised 1.5 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines and…

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AMERICA'S FATAL FLAW

A war rages inside Joe Biden’s foreign policy team between Russia-appeasers on the White House National Security Council (NSC) and those in the State Department and Pentagon who believe that Vladimir Putin is a global menace who must be contained and punished. This dust-up is a symptom of a more serious flaw which is Washington’s chronic failure to fully understand or counteract Moscow. Now, six months into a new Presidency, the appeasers are winning so Putin has been riding roughshod over America by mounting cyber-attacks against the United States and saber-rattling against Ukraine. The current internal rift began when the White House team convinced Biden to back off Congressional sanctions approved in December to…

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ТРИДЦЯТЬ СРІБНЯКІВ

У історіографії жахливого Голокосту єврейського народі під час Другої Світової Війни ім’я єврейського історика Раула Гілберга займає найбільш помітне місце. Навіть американське судочинство уважало його найкращим спеціалістом цієї історії і постійно користувалось його експертизою. Правда євреї його не люблять бо він був надто серйозним науковцем і у переліку подій старався бути об’єктивним. Він навіть закидав євреям що вони ішли на смерть майже як вівці без спротиву, а натомість допомагали нищити своїх. Для прикладу він написав таке про допомогу німцям у винищуванні євреїв, хіба…

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BIDEN FACES FURTHER BATTLE OVER PUTIN’S PIPELINE

US President Joe Biden’s efforts to strike a deal with Germany over Vladimir Putin’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline are coming under further critical scrutiny and encountering additional domestic opposition as recent developments underline the Kremlin’s continued readiness to use energy supplies as a geopolitical weapon. Talks between the United States and Germany are ongoing over possible ways to avert negative consequences from the completion of the Baltic Sea gas pipeline. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has said these discussions aim to “ensure that Russia cannot use energy as a coercive tool directed at Ukraine or anyone else.” However, opponents argue that…

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THE MINSK ACCORDS: SHOULD BRITAIN DECLARE THEM DEAD?

The Minsk Accords, intended to stop the fighting in southeastern Ukraine, have failed – but they still occupy centre-stage as ‘the only option’ for peace. If the United Kingdom (UK) really wants to be a friend to Ukraine, it needs to come out and say that this emperor has no clothes. Russia’s undeclared war in Ukraine’s Donbas region, a toxic mix of separatism and Russian intervention, has been an especially intractable problem for the international community. Unlike the …

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REMEMBER THE UKRAINIANS FOUND IN SPIRIT LAKE CEMETERY

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau reminded Canadians last month that: “As a Catholic, I am deeply disappointed by the position … the Catholic Church has taken now and over the past many years,” not “showing the leadership that quite frankly is supposed to be at the core of our faith, of forgiveness, of responsibility, of acknowledging truth.” Evocative words, especially delivered in the well-practised, rather unctuous tone he deploys whenever apologizing for some historical injustice. Anyway, as Trudeau was frank about his faith, I shall follow his good example. I, too, was schooled in a Roman Catholic world, although I’m different for having been baptized into the Ukrainian Catholic faith of my…

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GHOST TOWNS SPREADING ACROSS RUSSIAN NORTH WITH MAJOR CITIES FOLLOWING SUIT

The cities in the Russian North in most cases were built as a result of Stalin’s dispatch of GULAG prisoners to develop the natural resources of that enormous region, and they were maintained by the subsidies that the post-Soviet leaderships provided to workers willing to live in the harsh environment there. But now both of those factors have disappeared, and as a result, and together with the impact of global warming and the ability of people there to move elsewhere, most of those cities are on their way to extinction, a trend that calls into question Vladimir Putin’s economic and geopolitical aspirations…

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UKRAINE’S ALLIES IN US CONGRESS REMAIN COMMITTED TO ITS INTERESTS

When Joe Biden won the U.S. presidential election in November, Ukrainian leaders grew excited. Perhaps now, they thought, the country’s biggest ally against Russia would be squarely in Ukraine’s corner. Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s promises of support stoked hope that the U.S. would crack down on Russian attempts to weaken and isolate Ukraine. But soon, these hopes were shaken when the Biden administration waived sanctions on the main consortium building the Nord Stream 2 pipeline through the Baltic Sea. Many also saw Biden’s subsequent meeting with Vladimir Putin as wishy-washy, leaving Ukraine’s future uncertain. Fortunately, Ukraine has several dozen advocates from both the Democrat and Republican parties in…

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ESCAPE FROM EMPIRE: UKRAINE’S POST-SOVIET NATIONAL AWAKENING

The strengthening of Ukrainian national identity over the past three decades of independence is an important and under-explored historical phenomenon that has had repercussions far beyond Ukraine’s borders. It has transformed the political climate across much of the former Soviet world and helped fuel today’s Cold War-style climate of confrontation between Russia and the West. From the very beginning, Ukraine’s post-Soviet nation-building journey has been defined by competition between rival narratives that have sought to place the country within the so-called Russian World or among the European community of nations. Ukrainian supporters of a Russia-friendly Eastern Slavic identity have always been able to…

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LOOKING BEYOND NATO AND THE EU: THE TURKISH-UKRAINIAN STRATEGIC PARTNERSHIP

Increasing disillusionment with the West combined with a shared geopolitical outlook is driving a growing partnership between Turkey and Ukraine. After decades of fruitless negotiations and empty promises, it is clear the EU has no intention of putting Ukraine on a clear path to full membership. The same is true of NATO’s approach to the country. Disillusionment in Ukraine with European structures is not yet as strong as it is in Turkey, but it will undoubtedly continue to grow. Why are Ukrainians angry? They feel they were deceived into giving away their nuclear weapons for a worthless piece of paper – the so-called Budapest Memorandum – and that there is a lack of appreciation for their investments in defending Europe’s eastern flank from…

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KHARKIV HUMAN RIGHTS PROTECTION GROUP: PROSECUTOR GENERAL VENEDIKTOVA IS HELPING RUSSIA BY DESTROYING UKRAINE’S VITAL WAR DEPARTMENT

The Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group (KHPG) reported, “Lawyers representing Gyunguz Mamedov have demanded to see ‘secret letters’ from Ukraine’s Security Service [SBU] which Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova cited when tackled by human rights NGOs over why she had removed Mamedov from his post as highly effective head of the crucial ‘War Department’. Representatives of some of Ukraine’s most prominent NGOs reported that, during the meeting on 5 July, Venediktova spent two hours effectively ducking the question of why she had taken a decision with potentially disastrous impact on Ukraine’s legal cases against Russia over its occupation of Crimea and military aggression in…

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DOCUMENTS REVEAL ERIK PRINCE'S $10 BILLION PLAN TO MAKE WEAPONS AND CREATE A PRIVATE ARMY IN UKRAINE

On the second night of his visit to Kyiv, Erik Prince had a dinner date on his agenda. A few of his Ukrainian associates had arranged to meet the American billionaire at the Vodka Grill that evening, Feb. 23, 2020. The choice of venue seemed unusual. The Vodka Grill, a since-defunct nightclub next to a KFC franchise in a rough part of town, rarely saw patrons as powerful as Prince. As the party got seated inside a private karaoke room on the second floor, Igor Novikov, who was then a top adviser to Ukraine’s President, remembers feeling a little nervous. He had done some reading about Blackwater, the…

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UKRAINE TO HOLD LAND MILITARY DRILLS WITH US, POLAND, LITHUANIA

Ukraine, the United States, Poland and Lithuania will hold a large military exercise in the western part of Ukraine later in July, the Ukrainian military said on Monday, the second round of war games involving Kyiv and foreign partners in a month. The drill, Three Swords-2021, will involve more 1,200 servicemen and more than 200 combat vehicles and will last from 17 to 30 July at the Yavoriv training ground in Lviv region. “Three Swords-2021 creates favourable conditions for the development and effective coordination of units of partner states, in order to improve the quality and increase the…

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THE LONG ARM OF THE CHEKISTS

Catherine Belton was a Moscow correspondent from 2007 until 2016: one of the best reporters in a competitive field. But before I go any further, I wish to make it absolutely clear that I have no intention of praising her. Belton’s achievements should not in any way imply that she has not gravely maligned entirely innocent, if also fantastically rich, influential and powerful, Russians. After the Financial Times brought her back to London, she finished Putin’s People, a book backed by enormous amounts of research. Before I continue, I find I must stop myself again and make it clear that I will not discuss her…

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BEYOND THE EU AND NATO: WHERE ELSE IN THE WORLD SHOULD UKRAINE BE LOOKING?

A wide network of German-language public groups and pages on Facebook shares Kremlin narratives about NATO, the U.S. and Ukraine. When UkraineWorld studied the activity of the popular Ukrainian news website strana.ua, we discovered that some of its manipulative articles were shared in German-language public Facebook groups Russlandversteher (The Russia Understander) and Gegen Defender 21 (Against Defender 21). We decided to study the activities of these groups further and tried to find similar communities on Facebook. If one takes a look at the content shared in the…

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PUTIN'S BLUNT MESSAGE FOR GERMANY: FORGET UKRAINE

Russian President Vladimir Putin is trying to convince the Germans to be open-minded, regardless of the past. But the past he urges Germans to forget has nothing to do with Nazism. Here the Russian president understands that the Germans are still bound by the politics of memory, and are unlikely to allow themselves to change history any time soon. Putin is also aware that the thought viruses propagated by Kremlin propaganda are effective enough to bind the Russian population together in a single aggressive impulse. What he wants the German people to forget about is another, not-so-distant and yet also unpleasant past: the war in Ukraine and the occupation of its territories…

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UKRAINE SAYS RUSSIAN GAS SUPPLY CURBS TO EUROPE ARE ‘BLACKMAIL’

The head of Ukraine’s state-backed pipeline company has described Russia’s refusal to ship additional gas supplies to Europe as “blackmail”, with prices for the fuel having risen to the highest on record. Sergiy Makogon, chief executive of Gas Transmission System Operator of Ukraine, said he believed Russia’s Gazprom was purposefully holding back gas supplies from Europe by refusing to ship additional volumes via Ukraine, in a bid to force the approval of the contentious Nord Stream 2 pipeline that runs from the Baltic to Germany. “[Europe] should not follow this blackmail of Gazprom with prices,” Makogon told…

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THE BIDEN-PUTIN SUMMIT: NO ROLLING OVER, NO ROLLING BACK

‘I did what I came here to do’ is exactly what Ronald Reagan might have said. But whilst Reagan had a talent for making toughness sound affable, the challenge for Joseph Biden after his two and a half hour summit with Vladimir Putin on 16 June 2021 will be to persuade his home base, and Putin himself, that he will show toughness through deeds and substance. When he told the State Department on 5 February that ‘the days of the United States rolling over in the face of Russia’s aggressive actions are over’, he faced no such challenge. But Biden now has a credibility problem in both Washington and…

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UCCLA CONDEMNS HATE CRIMES AGAINST UKRAINIAN CHURCHES IN CANADA

The Ukrainian Canadian Civil Liberties Association (www.uccla.ca) condemns the recent vandalism of two Ukrainian Catholic churches in Canada and wants these incidents to be investigated as hate crimes. Overnight, between June 30 and July 1, the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary Ukrainian Catholic Church in Calgary was vandalized with spray paint, and the property defaced, including a memorial plaque commemorating Canada’s first national internment operations. And, on June 18, it was reported that a 100-year-old Ukrainian Catholic Church in Fisher Branch, in Manitoba’s Interlake region, was vandalized; windows were smashed and numerous items within the church were damaged. “What happened to indigenous peoples as a result of the…

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У СТОЛИЦІ ВІДЗНАЧИЛИ 80 РОКІВ АКТУ ВІДНОВЛЕННЯ УКРАЇНСЬКОЇ ДЕРЖАВИ

30 червня вісімдесят років тому у Львові Організація Українських Націоналістів з-під стягу Степана Бандери проголосила Акт відновлення Української Держави. З нагоди ювілею у багатьох містах країни відбулися святкові заходи. У Києві, в інформаційно-виставковому центрі Музею Майдану, з ініціативи ОУН (б) урочисто вшанували цю дату. До присутніх, які вщерть переповнили зал, із вступним словом через відозв’язок звернувся Голова ОУН (б) Стефан Романів, який привітав із видатною датою в історії українського державотворення. Модератор урочистого заходу, керівник Центру Національного Відродження Тарас Гребеняк запросив до…

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УКРАЇНСЬКА ДОБА ПРОСВІТНИЦТВА – КОНСТИТУЦІЯ 1710 РОКУ

Незалежній українській державі тридцятий рік, і хоча вона має свою частку проблем та недоліків, демократична схильність є дуже сильною її стороною. Принаймні дві масові революції в ході демонстрували, що громадянське суспільство та його роль, визначені Організацією Об’єднаних Націй та теоретиками демократії, дуже живі в Україні. А ще є люди індивідуалісти. М’яко кажучи, мій рахунок населення складається з дуже прозахідних демократичних, освічених людей. А ще є документ понад триста років, який підтверджує це твердження. Насправді історично склалася демократична українська традиція, яка сягає часів київських князів монархів, коли відбувалися громадські віча і закони кодифікувались на благо суспільства ще в XI столітті. Але найбільш…

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FOR UKRAINIANS, EURO 2020 RESONATES BEYOND FOOTBALL

Within moments of Ukrainian substitute Artem Dovbyk’s dramatic last-minute winning goal against Sweden at Euro 2020 on Tuesday night, millions of his compatriots were flooding social media with congratulatory posts and patriotic messages. From Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to internationally acclaimed Ukrainian author Andrei Kurkov, the whole nation seemed to be celebrating Ukraine’s victory. This party atmosphere was still evident on Wednesday morning, when Ukraine’s entire Cabinet of Ministers turned up for their weekly meeting sporting Ukrainian national team jerseys. At first glance, the jubilant mood in Ukraine may not seem particularly noteworthy. After all, fans across Europe (and beyond) are…

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IF UKRAINE WANTS HELP AGAINST RUSSIA, KYIV MUST STAND AGAINST CHINA

Ukraine is in dire straits, not least because Russia invaded the new democracy in 2014 and is still there, violating its borders on a daily basis, and shooting off missiles at Ukrainian soldiers in the country’s east. So, Ukraine looks for support anywhere it can find. The United States, Britain, and NATO generally have been soft on Putin, when they should have rushed into the Ukrainian breach and helped the inspiring young country with all we’ve got. This failure of Ukraine’s democratic friends follows a sorry path in history of democracies as reluctant allies to each other when it means risking their own skin, as opposed to glittering photo shoots for politicians at alliance summits in each others’ palaces and presidential mansions. That said, Ukraine must not…

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АКТ 30 ЧЕРВНЯ 1941 РОКУ МОВОЮ ДОКУМЕНТІВ

Львівський Акт проголошення відновлення Української Держави 30 червня 1941 р. приблизно з 1959 р. (рік вбивства Степана Бандери) став об’єктом дезінформації і провокацій, запущених Москвою проти Українського визвольного руху ОУН-УПА. У цю діяльність, звичайно, була підключена п’ята колона і різної масти недруги України і українців. Така ситуація триває і по сьогодні. Проте найбільш ефективним методом протистояти дезінформації і провокаціям є мова документів про боротьбу українського визвольного руху проти двох головних окупантів України, тобто, нацистської Німеччини під час ІІ світової війни та історичного ворога України – Росії. З німецьких документів про Акт 30 червня 1941р.: Берлін, 3 липня 1941р.: “Айнзацгрупа Б повідомляє 2 і 3 червня 1941 р. про спроби…

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RUSSIA TARGETS FOX NEWS FANS IN BID TO BECOME THE WORLD’S ANTI-WOKE CAPITAL

Galvanized by the results of recent American polls and the popularity of Russian President Vladimir Putin with Fox News and its audiences, the Kremlin is proceeding with a new charm offensive targeting Western conservatives. Russia cannot offer much in terms of gun rights, freedom of speech, or standard of living—at least not for those excluded from Putin’s mob-like circle of trust. Rather, the Kremlin intends to attract Western converts with another type of currency—bigotry—turning Russia into the land of ultimate political incorrectness, the world’s anti-woke capital. On Monday, Russia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Sergey Lavrov published an op-ed that left many readers scratching their heads. “In a number of Western countries, students learn at…

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DOES UKRAINE MATTER TO AMERICA?

Eastern Europe and the Caucusus are the central theatres of Russian aggression. Georgia, Armenia, Belarus, Moldova, and Ukraine — all former Soviet Republics — have all either lost territory to or largely ceded government control to Russia during Putin’s reign. Putin’s vision is the renewal of the former Russian empire by coercion if possible and by force if necessary. Among those territories, Ukraine is most critical to the Russian vision. Its loss to the West would be the biggest blow. Russian activity in Ukraine should be viewed in this context. If Slavic and Orthodox Christian Ukraine becomes a normal successful democratic and western-oriented country, the renewal of the Russian empire is impossible. Further, just as the Soviet empire unraveled…

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СФУЖО ВШАНОВУЄ 80-ТУ РІЧНИЦЮ ПРОГОЛОШЕННЯ АКТУ ПРО ВІДНОВЛЕННЯ УКРАЇНСЬКОЇ ДЕРЖАВИ 30 ЧЕРВНЯ 1941 РОКУ

Світова Федерація Українських Жіночих Організацій, вшановуючи Акт відновлення Української Держави в день 30 червня 1941 року у Львові, вітає українців усього світу з 80-ю річницею цієї ключової в історії України події. Акт був оголошений з ініціативи ОУН у Львові, коли Україна опинилася перед загрозою втрати надій на державність, коли відважні сини і дочки українського народу – борці за волю України, жертвуючи своїм життям, змагалися з найбільшими тоталітарними режимами – фашистською Німеччиною та більшовицькою червоною Росією. На початку Другої світової війни, опинившись під окупацією двох найжорстокіших імперій, українці оперлися на власні сили і вдалися до…

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RUSSIAN SNIPERS ARE PICKING OFF UKRAINIAN SOLDIERS

Ukrainian soldiers are taught to drop in their trench position and stay down for at least 15 minutes if a sniper’s bullet misses them. The hope is the sniper will believe them dead. But elite Russian snipers usually don’t miss. In a hand-dug trench a half-mile from the front line in the restive Donbas region on eastern Ukraine, bright green grass grows and red poppies flower just inches above the heads of Ukrainian soldiers manning their position. The nearby village of Hranitne is like many in post-industrial eastern Ukraine. A showy, Soviet-era rectangular City Hall, an abandoned agricultural factory converted to…

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RUSSIA-EUROPE RELATIONS DEPEND ON MOSCOW CONFRONTING THE PAST

To mark the eightieth anniversary of Nazi Germany’s attack on the Soviet Union, Russian President Vladimir Putin wrote a commentary in the German weekly newspaper Die Zeit. Putin’s commentary is an attempt to woo Germany back to its once-cozy relationship with Russia, blame NATO expansion eastward for undermining European security, and point the finger at the United States for the “armed coup” in Ukraine in 2014. With a German audience in mind—and especially with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron now anxious to reset EU relations with Russia—Putin presses all the right buttons. He praises how West Germany “concluded the deal of the…

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ГОЛОС ВІЙСЬКОВИХ ПОЧУЛИ: ВРУ ПІДТРИМАЛА ЗАКОНОПРОЄКТ ПРО ОСНОВИ НАЦІОНАЛЬНОГО СПРОТИВУ

Сьогодні, 29 червня, депутати Верховної Ради 318 голосами підтримали в першому читанні законопроєкт про основи національного спротиву. У цей час ветерани російсько-української війни та волонтери вийшли під стіни ВРУ на акцію “Ветерани підтримують національний спротив. Проголосуй за законопроєкт № 5557”. Організатор заходу – Український центр безпеки та співпраці. Серед учасників акції були ветерани російсько-української війни, зокрема командир 24-го окремого штурмового батальйону “Айдар” Євген Пташник, командир підрозділу батальйону “Січ”, член Консультативної ради з питань захисту прав і свобод захисників України при Президентові України Станіслав Торкін, радник керівника Офісу Президента України з питань АТО Андрій Ляхович та…

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80 РОКІВ АКТУ 30 ЧЕРВНЯ 1941 Р.

Організація Українських Націоналістів, її воєнно-політична програма та ідеологія були закономірним наслідком втрати державності і окупації України, після поразки визвольних змагань 1917-1921 років. Вважаючи українське питання ключовим у встановленні стабільності в Центрально-Східній Європі, націоналісти намагалися спиратися на власні сили та використати усі сприятливі геополітичні обставини для відновлення української державності. У 1920-1930-х роках західноукраїнські землі стали епіцентром визвольної боротьби українського народу. В цей період у національному русі виділилося дві основні політичні течії. Легальні політичні партії займали позицію мирного тиску на урядові структури, широко використовуючи у цьому парламент, легальну пресу, санкціоновані мітинги та…

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30 ЧЕРВНЯ 1941 РОКУ: АКТ НАЦІОНАЛЬНОЇ ГІДНОСТІ

«В чім є історичне значення Акту 30 червня 1941 року – проголошення відновлення незалежної України, опанованої двома великодержавами?» – цим питанням, сформульованим Дмитром Донцовим в передмові до праці Ярослава Стецька «30 червня 1941», переймалося багато дослідників, політичних діячів та відвертих критиканів. Останні безапеляційно намагалися применшити, або й зовсім заперечити значення цієї події, втім, як заперечували і взагалі доцільність національно-визвольної боротьби. Спробуємо й ми, з відстані 80 років, поглянути на події буремної доби. Українськими очима. Власне об’єктивна оцінка подій такого історичного значення, як Акт 30 червня…

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У 80-ТУ РІЧНИЦЮ АКТУ 30 ЧЕРВНЯ 1941 РОКУ

В історії України Акт 30 червня у Львові вписується в той ряд важливих політичних чинів, які творять один безперервний державотворчий континуум: від держави Київської Руси і держави Козацько-Гетьманської Доби, через Акти незалежності УНР і Соборності 22 січня 1918 і 1919 років, проголошення Української Карпатської Республіки 1939 року, через Акт відновлення державності 30 червня 1941 року та Маніфест Української Головної Визвольної Ради 1944 року, підходячи таким чином аж до новітнього Акту проголошення незалежності України 24 серпня 1991 року, – 30-ліття якого цього року відмічуємо. Напередодні своєї смерті 5 липня 1986 року – 35 років тому – голова Українського Державного Правління (УДП) Ярослав Стецько у…

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UKRAINE’S RUSSIA SANCTIONS TARGET PUTIN’S INNER CIRCLE

While international attention tends to focus on the anti-Russian sanctions imposed by the West, Ukraine and Russia are locked in their own cycle of increasingly harsh sanctions measures that plays an important role in the ongoing seven-year hybrid war between the two countries. Russia typically initiates these exchanges, but eventually Ukraine responds. On June 24, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy signed off on expanded and extended sanctions against Russia that target 538 people and 540 entities. The same day, Zelenskyy issued another decree sanctioning 55 Russian state…

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US INTELLIGENCE DOES NOT HELP UKRAINE'S SECURITY

Among the gravest security concerns for Ukraine aside from the obvious Russian imperialism is a much less obvious and surreptitious infiltration by the US intelligence community of the Ukrainian American community. This is not a recent phenomenon. In 1966 then President of the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America Dr. Lev Dobriansky inquired with the both the Central Intelligence Agency and the Federal Bureau of Investigations whether the Supreme Ukrainian Liberation Council was receiving financial support from the United States Government. The Council was operating within the…

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АМЕРИКАНСЬКА РОЗВІДКА НЕ ДОПОМАГАЄ БЕЗПЕЦІ УКРАЇНИ

Серед найсерйозніших проблем безпеки для України, окрім очевидного російського імперіалізму, є набагато менш очевидна та прихована інфільтрація американською розвідувальною спільнотою української американської спільноти. Це явище давнього часу. У 1966 році тодішній президент Українського конгресового комітету Америки доктор Лев Добрянський запитав як Центральне розвідувальне управління, так і Федеральне бюро розслідувань, чи отримує Українська головна визвольна рада фінансову підтримку від уряду США. Рада діяла в Сполучених Штатах через дослідницький-видавничий дім “Пролог”. У статті українського радянського видання “Літературна Україна” вказувалося, що президент Пролога Микола Лебедь та…

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RUSSIAN SUPPLY CURBS EXACERBATE SQUEEZE ON EUROPEAN GAS MARKET

Russia has exacerbated a shortage of European natural gas supplies that has driven prices to a 13-year high by quietly limiting top-up sales to customers, according to executives and analysts. Pipeline exports of natural gas from Russia’s state-backed monopoly Gazprom to continental Europe have dropped roughly one-fifth in 2021 on pre-pandemic levels despite a sharp rebound in demand and low stockpiles of the important fuel. The imbalance has helped send prices in Europe to the highest levels since 2008, increasing energy costs for homes and businesses. The rise in prices comes during a period of…

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SUMMIT EXPOSES STARK CLASH OF EU VIEWS ON RUSSIA

French President Emmanuel Macron thinks his fellow leaders from Poland and the Baltics are Russophobic, and that they insist on an unnecessarily tough policy toward Moscow out of misplaced paranoia. Leaders in Warsaw, Tallinn, Riga and Vilnius, by contrast, see themselves as Russo-realistic and the French president as dangerously deluded in his soft approach to President Vladimir Putin. In Paris, malign activities like election meddling or extra-territorial assassinations are part of a more complex relationship with Russia, a country that is also the land of ballet and the Hermitage Museum, and the obvious supplier of caviar, the perfect accompaniment to champagne. But in Central and Eastern Europe, Russia is the…

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THE BIDEN-PUTIN SUMMIT HAS OPENED THE FLOODGATES

One of the downside risks of President Biden’s decision to invite Vladimir Putin to a summit in Geneva was that it created a permission structure for European allies who would want to orchestrate similar meetings with the Russian leader. “If the Americans are taking the initiative to speak to Putin, why can’t Europe?” as one European diplomat told the Financial Times. On Wednesday, the leaders of Germany and France did just that, proposing that the EU hold a summit with Putin. The timing of the overture from Berlin and Paris was less than ideal. The same day the Germans and French proposed a summit with Putin, Russian vessels and military aircraft threatened a British warship, the HMS Defender, traveling in the Black Sea. The Defender was…

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PUTIN BLAMES ANYONE BUT HIMSELF FOR LOSS OF UKRAINE

Russian President Vladimir Putin used this week’s eightieth anniversary of Nazi Germany’s WWII invasion of the Soviet Union to give his Ukraine conspiracy theories a fresh airing. In an op-ed entitled “Being Open Despite the Past” published on June 22 by German newspaper Die Zeit, Putin accused the United States of staging an armed coup in Ukraine seven years ago with the active backing of the European Union. “Why did America organize a coup, and why did the countries of Europe gutlessly support it?” he asked. This is nothing new. Ever since millions of…

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FALSE DE-ESCALATION: THE CONTINUING RUSSIAN THREAT TO UKRAINE AND THE BLACK SEA REGION

The announced withdrawal of troops does little to allay concerns about Russia’s strategic intentions, as the Kremlin’s quest to challenge the West in the Black Sea theatre continues unabated. The Russian-Ukrainian conflict has been back in the limelight since late March, with Russian troops massing near Ukrainian borders and in occupied Crimea. The Russian Ministry of Defence’s announcement on 22 April that it would pull back forces from Ukrainian borders after the successful finalisation of a ‘combat readiness check’ was met with palpable relief. But this optimism was misplaced: the widely welcomed de-escalation did not in…

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DEMOCRACY AND CORRUPTION

The essential issue here is whether democratic processes in fledgling often corrupt economic societies are conducive or preventative to governmental and societal corruption. A specific case on point for this discussion is dichotomy of Ukraine and and its northern neighbor, Belarus both arising from the ashes of the USSR. Both are corrupt predictably. Ukraine is democratic, Belarus is autocratic, yet their corruption ranking is hugely disparate in favor of Belarus. According to Transparency International Belarus ranks 63rd globally, Ukraine ranks a dismal 117th out of 180 countries. Accepting these rankings on their face an objective observer may be disposed to say…

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ДЕМОКРАТІЯ ТА КОРУПЦІЯ

Основне питання тут полягає в тому, чи сприяють демократичні процеси у молодих корумпованих економічних суспільствах чи запобігають корупції уряду та суспільства. Конкретним випадком для цієї дискусії є роздвоєність України та її північного сусіда Білорусі, що виникають із попелу СРСР. Обидва корумповані передбачувано. Україна демократична, Білорусь – автократична, проте їхній рейтинг корупції дуже різний на користь Білорусі. За даними Transparency International, Білорусь посідає 63 місце у світі, Україна посідає похмуре 117 місце зі 180 країн. Приймаючи ці…

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WHAT REALLY HAPPENED IN THE BLACK SEA? A VICTORY FOR RUSSIAN DISINFORMATION

On Wednesday, war almost broke out in the Black Sea. Or so it seemed, as news outlets, Twitter users, and state media conveyed accounts of a Royal Navy ship being fired upon by Russian ships off the Crimean coast. The June 23 almost-war dramatically illustrates the power of disinformation – and everyone’s responsibility to check facts. A British tabloid published a dramatic account of the events by a reporter aboard the destroyer, which was en route from Odesa toward Georgia. “The angry thud of cannon fire rings out on the port side of HMS Defender as I crouch beside the bridge in my hastily adorned flame retardant gloves and balaclava,” it read. Russia’s Ministry of Defence tweeted…

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KGB RENDING OUR JEWISH AND UKRAINIAN DIASPORAS

We always suspected it. We tried to tell reporters, politicians, police investigators, even a few of those ranged against us in the public arena about what we were certain was true — but they wouldn’t believe us. I can’t blame them. There was no hard proof, not in the 1980s, to confirm Soviet agents of influence had initiated “active measures” to undermine the anti-Communist Ukrainian community in the West Now there is. Code-named Operation Payback, this plan was cynically orchestrated to exploit the understandable desire of the Jewish diaspora to see perpetrators of some of the greatest atrocities of the 20th century — the Nazis — brought to justice. By the late 1960s, quite alarmingly from a Soviet point of view, Jewish and Ukrainian émigrés had…

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WORSE THAN HITLER: HOW STALIN ORCHESTRATED WORLD WAR II

Adolf Hitler looms largest in the pantheon of evildoers. As Sean McMeekin notes in his massive and indispensable new book “Stalin’s War: A New History of World War II,” “Hitler still haunts our nightmares as an all-purpose bogeyman, with remembrance of the horrors he unleashed uniting us in denunciation of Fascism, anti-Semitism, racism, and the other evils of Nazism.” In the West, Hitler and the Nazis occupy the farthest reaches of human depravity: You’re bad, you’re really bad, and then, finally, you’re Hitler. As McMeekin points out, the farther East the focus shifts, the more Joseph Stalin and Soviet…

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WHY PUTIN DARE NOT ABANDON BELARUS DICTATOR LUKASHENKA

The ongoing crisis in Belarus was barely mentioned during last week’s hotly anticipated summit meeting in Geneva between US President Joe Biden and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin. While Belarus reportedly featured on the American leader’s agenda going into the talks, it seems the Russian side had no interest in discussing the issue. This apparent reluctance reflects Putin’s view of Belarus as belonging exclusively to the Kremlin’s sphere of interest. Nevertheless, there had been considerable speculation ahead of the June 16 summit that the Russian leader might actually be prepared to sacrifice Lukashenka in return for concessions from the West. According to this scenario, Putin would agree to…

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U.S. LAWMAKERS PRESSURE WHITE HOUSE ON EXTRADITION OF UKRAINIAN TYCOON FIRTASH

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported on June 23, “Congressional lawmakers are ratcheting up the pressure on the White House, demanding more be done to force the extradition of a powerful Ukrainian tycoon from Austria to the United States. In a letter released by a bipartisan group of House of Representatives lawmakers on June 22, they also suggested that Austria’s judiciary had been corrupted by Dmytro Firtash, one of Ukraine’s wealthiest businessmen. The demand was the latest development in the…

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STATEMENT BY UK SECRETARY OF STATE FOR DEFENCE ON EXERCISES IN THE BLACK SEA

UK Secretary of State Ben Wallace stated, “On Wednesday 23 June 2021, HMS DEFENDER (a Type 45 Destroyer), left the Ukrainian port of Odesa en route to the Georgian port of Batumi in the Black Sea. HMS DEFENDER conducted innocent passage through Ukrainian territorial waters via a direct route using a traffic separation scheme (TSS), as is the right of the United Kingdom (and all nations) under international maritime law. This TSS is governed by the International Maritime Organisation and is designed to assist vessels in safely transiting congested waterways. The United Kingdom does not recognise any Russian claim to these waters, nor do we recognise the assertion from the Russian Ministry of Defence that HMS DEFENDER was in violation of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). At 0950 BST, HMS DEFENDER entered the…

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THE SWEDES OWE US

I was an uncoordinated athlete, although I did play sports, quite poorly. My best sport in retrospect if, in fact, it is a sport was pool or billiards. That was due probably to the environment where the game was played. The opposition was mostly intoxicated and I still think that the buzz enabled me. In any event while being a poor athlete I was a most avid fan to the point of fanaticism. My fandom was never predicated on the skill of an athlete or the team, but on the politics predicated entirely on geography. I was and remain a local fan invariably supporting the teams where I live. I broke barriers of many recognized team sport fans as dictated by experts by being a fan of both the Metropolitans and Yankees, Giants and Jets, Knickerbockers and Nets, Rangers, Islanders and even the Devils. Soccer was largely an anathema for me although I participated, once again poorly, because…

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ПОЛІТИКА СПОРТУ

Я був некоординованим спортсменом, хоча і займався спортом, але досить погано. Мій найкращий вид спорту в ретроспективі, якщо насправді це спорт був більярд. Можливо, це було пов’язано з оточенням, де проводилася гра. Опозиція в основному була в нетверезому стані, і я досі вважаю, що мій власний кайм мені допомагав. У будь-якому випадку, будучи поганим спортсменом, я був найзапеклішим фанатом до фанатизму. Мій фендом ніколи не базувався на майстерності спортсмена чи команди, а на політиці, що повністю ґрунтувалася на географії. Я був і залишаюсь місцевим уболівальником, який незмінно підтримував команди, де я живу. Я подолав бар’єри багатьох визнаних шанувальників командного спорту, як того продиктували експерти, будучи…

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BRITAIN SHOWS BIDEN HOW TO DEAL WITH RUSSIAN AGGRESSION

The British government remains far too comfortable with the presence of Russian illicit finance on its soil. However, on Wednesday, Britain educated the Biden administration on how to deal with Russian aggression. The lesson came via the Royal Navy’s deployment of its Type-45 air defense destroyer, the HMS Defender, within 12 nautical miles of the Crimean coast. Twelve miles marks the delineation point between international waters and sovereign waters. Since its military seizure of Crimea in 2014, Russia has asserted that the territory is Russian. Put another way, that the 12 miles of water surrounding Crimea are as Russian as the 12 miles of water off Vladimir Putin’s home city, St. Petersburg. The point of…

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ПРЕДСТАВЛЕННЯ

Нещодавно прес-секретар Білого дому Джен Псакі була змушена виступити із заявою про допомогу Україні щодо її безпеки, нібито спростовуючи звинувачення чи чутки про те, що допомогу Україні в безпеці стримували. Прямо вона назвала це нісенітницею. Вона підкреслила, що напередодні американсько-російського саміту було передано150 мільйонів доларів, включаючи летальну допомогу, і що зараз (18 червня 2021 року) була виділена вся сума, призначена Конгресом США. Потім вона…

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DOOR TO NATO IS OPEN

The Ukrainian Canadian Congress (UCC) welcomes the reaffirmation by NATO leaders that Ukraine will become a member of the Alliance. Ukraine’s authorities must take advantage of this opportunity and strengthen efforts to implement reforms necessary to accede to NATO. The UCC looks forward to working with the Government of Canada to enhance support for reforms in Ukraine. On June 21, Canada’s Prime Minister, the Right Honourable Justin Trudeau, wrote in a letter to the UCC: “Canada’s commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty, security, and territorial integrity remains unwavering and our position on Russia is unequivocal. Canada will continue to hold Russia to account for its unacceptable behaviour. […] Canada has…

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WHAT BIDEN AND PUTIN DIDN’T DISCUSS

At his summit with Vladimir Putin in Geneva, Switzerland last week, President Biden pressed his Russian counterpart on a number of critical issues. He stressed the importance of protecting U.S. infrastructure from Russian cyberattacks — and signaled that the White House was prepared to take retaliatory measures in response to continued Russian cyber-mischief. He emphasized his support for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, the U.S. broadcaster whose continued functioning and independence within Russia is now being threatened by the Kremlin. And he warned of “devastating consequences” for Russia if opposition critic…

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TABLE FOR TWO

“I did what I came to do,” President Joe Biden said at his press conference after his Geneva summit meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin. And that is what Mr. Biden did. The problem is, so did Putin. Biden went to Geneva to restore predictability and stability to the U.S.-Russia relationship by reducing tensions and exploring potential areas of cooperation, whether on general issues—arms control, climate change, the Arctic—or more discrete ones, like humanitarian relief in Syria, where Russian forces have greatly contributed to atrocities and human suffering. He also went to explain to Putin the “consequences” that the Russian would risk by his continued bad behavior. Putin went to Geneva to show…

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LCBO DISCONTINUES VODKA NAMED AFTER INFAMOUS SOVIET UNION DICTATOR JOSEF STALIN

The LCBO is discontinuing a brand of vodka after advocacy groups noted it was named for Josef Stalin, the infamous dictator of the former Soviet Union. A post made on the Ukrainian Canada Facebook page called for the removal of Stalinskaya Vodka at stores, citing problematic ties to Stalin’s involvement in the genocide of Ukrainians. Ihor Michalchyshyn, the CEO of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress’ (UCC), said when people heard about the liquor being sold at the stores, they reached out to LCBO, asking them to review the company’s community standards for names of alcohol. Following the review, they found the vodka “does not meet the LCBO’s name and labelling standards and is no longer available for sale,” an LCBO spokesperson told the Star. Michalchyshyn said he appreciates the…

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AMID INTERNAL DISPUTES OVER RUSSIA POLICY, BIDEN HAS CHOSEN A MIX OF CONFRONTATION AND COOPERATION

Before embarking on his first meeting with Vladimir Putin as commander in chief, President Biden touted the steps he took to punish the Russian president for a range of alleged actions including interference in the 2020 election, the poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny and the hacking of U.S. government agencies by Russian cyber spies. “I checked it out,” Biden told reporters at a news conference in Brussels before he left for Wednesday’s summit in Geneva. “[Putin] was engaged in those activities. I did respond and made it clear I’d respond again.” In almost immediately leveling economic sanctions against Russia and ruling out a major “reset” in relations, Biden has become the first U.S. president since the fall of the Soviet Union to…

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THE SPIN

White House press secretary Jen Psaki was compelled recently to issue a statement on Ukraine Security Assistance, ostensibly refuting allegations or rumors that Ukraine’s security assistance had been held back. Plain and simple she called it nonsense. In fact she stressed that in the run up to the US-Russia Summit $150 million including lethal assistance had been extended and that now (June 18, 2021) the entire amount appropriated by Congress had been provided. She then went on to quote President Biden at the NATO Summit, that we would keep putting Ukraine “in the position to be able to continue to resist Russian physical aggression.” Finally she…

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NORD STREAM 2

he Swiss company that is building Nord Stream 2 – the new pipeline connecting German gas consumers, with supply from the Russian behemoth Gazprom – issued a statement last week announcing that it was beginning preparations to bring it into service. There are, of course, many hurdles still to clear, but the project is inching ever closer to completion. Germany’s local elections at the weekend suggest the Greens’ appeal is waning, so domestic opposition looks unlikely to stymie development. Even the United States, which has opposed Nord Stream 2 under three successive administrations, has recognized it is now effectively a “fait accompli.” Nord Stream 2 is remarkable in three…

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HYSTERIA FROM RUSSIA CONFIRMS IT HAS REASON TO FEAR UKRAINE’S BILL ON INDIGENOUS PEOPLES

We are in our land. A rally inconceivable under Russian occupation but which this bill, once adopted, will help to make possible again On 18 May this year, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky tabled a vital new bill in the Verkhovna Rada on Indigenous Peoples. Just how important it is has been demonstrated by the unhealthy reaction from Russian President Vladimir Putin and other Russian politicians, and by their almost comical attempts to conceal the real reasons for their opposition to the bill. Draft Law No. 5506 was rightly designated as ‘urgent’, but mainly because it should have been…

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THE DANGERS OF ECHOING RUSSIAN DISINFORMATION ON UKRAINE

Russia’s spring 2021 saber-rattling on the Ukrainian border helped guarantee that Ukraine would be high on the international agenda during June’s G7, NATO, and US-Russia summit meetings. Fears of a major military escalation also served as a reminder that this unresolved European conflict remains at the heart of international affairs. Ever since the onset of Russian aggression against Ukraine in early 2014, the undeclared war between the two countries has unfolded alongside an avalanche of deliberate disinformation. Most of this has come from Russian state media or the Kremlin itself, but an…

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AFTER BIDEN-PUTIN, WILL RUSSIAN SPIES RETREAT TO SHADOWS?

EU leaders weren’t present when Joe Biden met Vladimir Putin in Geneva this week but their territory will be a testing ground for whether Moscow has decided to change its ways. Aggressive Russian espionage inside the EU has become increasingly public in recent years, with European governments openly accusing Russian agents of carrying out assassination attempts, sabotaging arms depots and hacking into political institutions with impunity. Some European intelligence officials say Russian spies have become more brazen, caring much less about whether their work is exposed. Others say Russian agents have always been…

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COURT HEADED BY GRAFT SUSPECT SUSPENDS RULING ON NAFTOGAZ CEO

The Kyiv Post reported on June 20, “Ukraine’s most controversial court on June 18 blocked an order to fire the new CEO of state hydrocarbon monopoly Naftogaz, Yuriy Vitrenko. In April, the Cabinet of Ministers fired former Naftogaz CEO Andriy Kobolev and replaced him with Vitrenko. Naftogaz and Ukraine’s western partners criticized the dismissal, saying it violated Ukraine’s corporate governance norms. On June 15, the National Agency for Preventing Corruption (NAPC) ruled that Vitrenko’s hire was unlawful and ordered the Cabinet to cancel it. Days later, the Cabinet successfully appealed the ruling in the Kyiv District Administrative Court, which is headed by the notorious judge Pavlo Vovk. Vovk has been charged with graft in multiple criminal cases. The government fired Kobolyev on…

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ON RUSSIA’S ONGOING AGGRESSION AGAINST UKRAINE AND ILLEGAL OCCUPATION OF CRIMEA

More than two months ago, Russia unilaterally built up its military forces in occupied Crimea and along Ukraine’s borders to levels unseen since its invasion in 2014. To date, Russia has failed to provide this Permanent Council with any reasonable explanation for its actions. While Russia has repositioned its military forces and equipment, its force posture remains elevated along the Russia-Ukraine border and on Ukrainian soil in Crimea, under Russia’s occupation. Last week, our Russian colleague made a spirited effort to defend an indefensible position. From his Statement, we could gather Russia is frustrated with the complications resulting from…

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GERMANY IS A BAD ALLY

When Russia’s Gazprom and European partners announced plans to expand pipelines carrying Russian gas to Europe, eight European Union members and the Obama administration raised objections. Not only would Nord Stream 2 make Europe more dependent on Russian gas but, by rendering the existing pipeline across Ukraine redundant, the deal would also enable Russia to stop paying its southern neighbor transit fees and further exacerbate Kiev’s financial crisis. The German government, however, stood defiant. “Some things the Europeans need to decide for themselves,” Peter Wittig, the German ambassador to the United States, declared, suggesting that…

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EXCLUSIVE DISPATCH: US GUARDSMEN TRAIN UKRAINIAN TROOPS FOR WAR AGAINST RUSSIA

At this former Soviet military base located some 750 miles to the west of Ukraine’s eastern war zone, the sounds of tank shots, machine guns, and small arms fire snarl throughout the course of this sweltering June afternoon. The Yavoriv International Peacekeeping and Security Centre was once a major meeting place for military leaders of the Warsaw Pact, the Soviet-led military alliance that opposed NATO during the Cold War. Some 30 years after the Soviet Union’s demise, the base is now home to a profoundly different mission. Under the watchful eye of about 130 US Army National Guardsmen, Ukrainian troops are training for combat against Russia, their former Soviet ally, as well as to operate alongside NATO militaries. For the Ukrainians, the…

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NATO SUMMIT: STRONG ON RUSSIA BUT A NET DISAPPOINTMENT TO EASTERN ALLIES AND PARTNERS

The heads of state and government of the North Atlantic Organization’s (NATO) 30 member countries held a summit at the Alliance’s Brussels headquarters on June 14. NATO summits usually take two days. This year’s vast agenda—reflected in an unusually long communiqué—clearly would have needed the accustomed two days for deliberation. United States President Joseph Biden’s first-time participation concentrated much of the attention at this NATO summit. Biden was the only participating head of state to hold a press conference at the summit’s conclusion, during which he adopted a notably cautious tone vis-à-vis Russia. He went on to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin two days later in Geneva (June 16), at Biden’s solicitation. As part of…

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THE SUMMIT THAT NEVER HAPPENED… OR DID IT?

The takeaway for Ukraine is…The Biden-Putin Summit in Geneva apparently did take place. There were two press conferences, one by each of the principals to prove that. Apparently the only tangible result was the renewed exchange of ambassadors. For the American cynic this was a far cry from Helsinki and thus a major victory for the American side. But success cannot be measured by Trump years. Putin at his press conference was aggressive criticizing the United States for its disorder but acknowledging that the meeting was not hostile. Putin was speaking from a current position of…

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PRO-KREMLIN PROPAGANDA IN UKRAINE CHANGES TONE

Pro-Kremlin propaganda in Ukraine is changing. Praising Putin is a harder sell in the country since Russia’s 2014 invasion, so nowadays the Kremlin and its proxies are focused less on boosting Russia and more about making the West look just as bad. These efforts rely on an array of conspiratorial disinformation themes including US Biolabs experimenting on unsuspecting Ukrainians, creepy lackeys of billionaire financier George Soros secretly controlling the government, and the IMF coming for Ukraine’s sacred farmland. How effective is this propaganda, and what can be done about it? Over the last year, the Arena project has worked with partners at the University of Zurich, Cardiff University, Internews Ukraine, and…

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THE GENEVA NOTHINGBURGER

President Joe Biden was cranky by the time his whirlwind Euro tour ended in Geneva Switzerland. He ended his appearance by uncharacteristically snapping at a reporter who repeated a question as he left his press conference following his summit with Vladimir Putin. His flash of anger was in sharp contrast to Putin’s press conference which finished with a softball question from a Canadian journalist who asked him to describe for her nine-year-old daughter what the summit was all about. Putin probably couldn’t believe his good fortune and launched into a soliloquy that the two leaders were simply trying to protect little kids and others from being hurt by…

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WHITE HOUSE FREEZES UKRAINE MILITARY PACKAGE THAT INCLUDES LETHAL WEAPONS

The Biden White House has temporarily halted a military aid package to Ukraine that would include lethal weapons, a plan originally made in response to aggressive Russian troop movements along Ukraine’s border this spring. The aid package would be worth up to $100 million, according to four people familiar with internal deliberations. The National Security Council directed officials to put the package together, as Washington grew increasingly concerned over a massive Russian military buildup near the border with Ukraine and in the Crimean Peninsula, according to three of the people, who like the others asked not to be named in order to speak candidly about internal discussions. Officials at the State Department and…

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ПОВЕРНІМ НІМЕЧЧИНІ ЛЮДСЬКІСТЬ

У царині звірят є певний розподіл на хижаків та мирних. Цей розподіл інколи характеризується способом відживлення — м’ясом чи рослинами. Звірята родяться такими якими вони є. Хоча є хижаки які перетворюються на мирних і увічливих, наприклад перетворення вовків на песиків. Чи таке можливе з москалями? Думаю що ні. Церква каже, що відрізняє людей від звірят це душа. Я вірую-чий, але у це не вірю в абсолютних вимірах. Є люди без душі. Можливо москальський президент Владимір Путін родивсь з душею але він її втратив через атрофію – брак користування нею. Під риском називатися ксенофобом я припускаю, що…

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САМІТ, ЯКИЙ НІКОЛИ НЕ ВІДБУВСЯ … ЧИ ВІДБУВСЯ?

Винос для України – це … Саміт Байдена-Путіна в Женеві, мабуть, відбувся. Для підтвердження цього було проведено дві прес-конференції, по одній від кожного з учасників. Очевидно, єдиним відчутним результатом став оновлений обмін послами. Для американського циніка це було далеко від Гельсінкі і, отже, головною перемогою американської сторони. Але успіх не можна виміряти роками Трампа. На своїй прес-конференції Путін агресивно критикував США за безладдя, але визнаючи, що зустріч не була ворожою. Путін говорив з сильної позиції : ціни на енергію дуже високі, і Росія нещодавно активізувала “Північний потік-2” певною мірою…

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“КОЛИ НАС НАЗИВАЮТЬ БАНДЕРІВЦЯМИ, ТО МИ ЦИМ ПИШАЄМОСЯ” – ЕПІФАНІЙ

Під час відвідування Львівського національного аграрного університету, випускником якого був Степан Бандера, Митрополит Київський і всієї України, предстоятель Православної церкви України Епіфаній висловив свою думку, що українці пишаються, коли їх називають нащадками Бандери. Про таке повідомили на сайті ПЦУ. “Історія університету засвідчує, з-поміж його випускників було багато тих, які насправді, не словом, а ділом, любили свою українську землю та її народ. Серед них варто відзначити та згадати генія українського національного і націєтворчого духу Степана Бандеру. Він є славним випускником саме вашого університету. І коли нас називають бандерівцями, то ми цим пишаємося”, – наголосив…

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BIDEN-PUTIN SUMMIT REVIEW: GOOD NEWS FOR UKRAINE?

Few countries were as anxious as Ukraine ahead of Wednesday’s summit meeting in Geneva between US President Joe Biden and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin. Since 2014, Ukraine has been the victim of an ongoing Russian military intervention and partial occupation that has plunged the international community into what many now regard as a new Cold War. While the democratic world has imposed sanctions on Russia and consistently backed Ukrainian sovereignty, fears remain that as the conflict drags on, Western leaders may seek to reach a compromise with the…

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UKRAINE READY TO TAKE ACTION AGAINST GAZPROM OVER CENTRAL ASIAN GAS

Ukraine is prepared to take legal action against Gazprom to unblock natural gas supplies from central Asia, a move that could ensure it has sufficient domestic supply and transit revenues even if Russia’s nearly completed Nord Stream 2 pipeline comes on stream this year. Gazprom controls the flow of gas through its pipelines into Ukraine from central Asia. It has blocked these flows for 15 years and if it does not approve them, the head of Ukraine’s state gas company says he is ready to appeal to the EU’s competition authorities and take the Russian energy giant to international arbitration. “It will be a…

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BRUSSELS SUMMIT COMMUNIQUÉ

We reiterate the decision made at the 2008 Bucharest Summit that Ukraine will become a member of the Alliance with the Membership Action Plan (MAP) as an integral part of the process; we reaffirm all elements of that decision, as well as subsequent decisions, including that each partner will be judged on its own merits. We stand firm in our support for Ukraine’s right to decide its own future and foreign policy course free from outside interference. The Annual National Programmes under the NATO-Ukraine Commission (NUC) remain the mechanism by which Ukraine takes forward the reforms pertaining to its aspiration for NATO membership. Ukraine should make full use of all instruments available under the NUC to reach its objective of implementing NATO principles and standards. The…

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DR. PHILLIP KARBER: “THE BEST DETERRENT TO RUSSIA IS UKRAINE AS A STRONG PART OF THE WEST AND MEMBER OF NATO”

The Ukrainian Week met with Dr. Phillip Karber, the head of the US think tank The Potomac Foundation, to discuss new US policies, countering authoritarian regimes, and Ukraine’s strategic importance to European security What is the current mood in Washington? What could Ukraine expect from President Biden? There are several points. Since 2014, The United States has not had a strong enough strategy when it comes to tempering Russian aggression in Ukraine. The US does not have an ambassador to…

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PUTIN PUNKS NATO

The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) meets today (June 14) and is a military alliance of 30 nations created in 1949 to provide collective defense against the Soviet Union. But since the Soviet empire fell apart in 1992, and Vladimir Putin took over Russia in 1999, NATO members have been outmaneuvered, attacked, and demoralized – militarily, politically, and digitally. Putin’s “hybrid warfare” has damaged democracies and has been slowly clawing back its old communist empire. NATO now faces a crisis and must pivot in order to rescue Europe’s two most threatened and vulnerable nations — Ukraine and Georgia. Both should immediately be granted Major Non-NATO Ally Status, as has been done with 17 countries including Australia, Israel, and South Korea. This will provide access to equipment and loans, collaboration, and…

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ПАВЛО ҐРОД: НАТО МАЄ ПІДТРИМАТИ УКРАЇНУ В ПРОТИДІЇ РОСІЙСЬКІЙ АГРЕСІЇ

У 2008 році саміт НАТО дозволив Росії, сам того не підозрюючи, відновити свою сферу впливу над Україною, Грузією та більшістю інших колишніх радянських республік. Більше десяти років потому ця слабка відповідь на імперські зазіхання Росії та відсутність чітких червоних ліній мала нищівні наслідки, адже на тепер понад 14 000 осіб загинуло на окупованій частині східної України внаслідок військової інтервенції Кремля, що і досі триває. Під час майбутнього саміту 14 червня в Брюсселі, лідери країн НАТО мають можливість змінити ситуацію – підтримати мир і демократію в Європі, погодившись надати Україні та Грузії План дій щодо членства (ПДЧ). Цей дороговказ, але все ще не гарантія членства в НАТО, може стати важливим кроком для країни, яка…

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NATO MUST STAND WITH UKRAINE AGAINST RUSSIAN AGGRESSION

When NATO blinked over Membership Action Plans for Ukraine and Georgia in 2008, it provided Russia with an unintended green light to re-establish its sphere of influence over the post-Soviet space.More than a decade later, the disastrous consequences of this weak decision are self-evident. Entire regions of Georgia and Ukraine are currently under Russian occupation, while more than 14,000 Ukrainians are dead as a result of the Kremlin’s ongoing military intervention in eastern Ukraine. During the upcoming summit on June 14 in Brussels, NATO leaders have an opportunity to support peace and democracy in Europe by agreeing to provide Ukraine with a Membership Action Plan (MAP). This…

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EX-AMB. JIM GILMORE: BIDEN-PUTIN SUMMIT – HERE ARE THE REASONS WHY THIS MEETING SHOULDN'T TAKE PLACE

President Joe Biden plans to hold a major “summit” with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Geneva, Switzerland, this week. In my view, he should not hold this meeting because it would add to Putin’s prestige and, because of the president’s style of diplomacy, Biden will be giving the Russian leader gifts of diplomatic gains and adding to the latter’s leverage in the world. The proposed meeting comes at a time in which Russia is likely behind significant cyberattacks against the U.S. infrastructure and while Putin’s opponents are being suppressed. Putin’s meeting with the leader of the free world lends him legitimacy, while Russians dedicated to freedom in Russia are being oppressed. Putin’s principal political opponent, Alexei Navalny, has…

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BIDEN AND THE CRUCIBLE OF EUROPEAN PEACE

President Biden is on his America-is-back tour of Europe, in Britain to meet the queen and Prime Minister Boris Johnson and for a Group of 7 (G7) conference over the weekend, then to Brussels for NATO and EU summits early next week and culminating with a showdown with Russian leader Vladimir Putin in Geneva on Wednesday. The president’s agenda is full but almost certainly bereft of the kind of practical and traditional diplomatic initiatives needed for a coherent foreign policy. In particular, the administration is likely to downplay the most critical issue for sustaining peace and reviving prospects for…

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THIS IS NEITHER AN OPTION NOR IS THERE AN ALTERNATIVE

In the discussion of Ukraine’s security concerns some so called experts, who pay little attention to details, have suggested a special option for Ukraine. This should serve as an alternative pursuant to U.S. legislation and resulting from American, German, French reluctance to somehow offend the Russians and allow for Ukraine’s NATO membership. This so called option is Major Non-NATO Ally Status (MNNA). People genuinely concerned with Ukraine’s security may be fooled by this status similarly to assurances given under the Budapest Memorandum of 1994. The U.S. law on MNNA is not an option for Ukraine nor is it an alternative to NATO membership. Frankly…

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ЦЕ НІ ВАРІАНТ, НІ АЛЬТЕРНАТИВА

Під час обговорення питань безпеки України деякі так звані експерти, які приділяють мало уваги деталям, запропонували спеціальний варіант для України. Це повинно служити альтернативою відповідно до законодавства США та внаслідок небажання Америки, Німеччини та Франції хоч якось образити росіян і дозволити вступ України до НАТО. Цей так званий варіант – статус головного союзника, що не входить до НАТО (MNNA). Люди, які справді стурбовані безпекою України, можуть бути обдурені цим статусом, подібно до запевнень, наданих Будапештським меморандумом 1994 року. Закон США про МNNA не є вибором для України і не є альтернативою членству в НАТО. Чесно кажучи, це хитрість. Цю спробу обдурити…

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АНТИСЕМІТИЗМ І УКРАЇНОФОБІЯ

Член Конгресу США з штату Міннесота, Ілган Омар, сомалійського походження, член Демократичної партії провокувала трохи, порівнюючи США та Ізраїль до терористичних організацій Гамасу та Талібану. Це викликало велике обурення від члена Конгресу США, Лі Зелдена з штату Нью Йорк, Республіканськоі партії, єврейського походження. Дуже цікавим було те, що його першою реакцією було назвати її, свою колегу по Конгресі, просто антисемітом. Чому цікавим? Бо Амар вперше хіба образила США, а щойно потім Ізраїль. Мабуть хтось йому згодом підказав, що ти американець та ще до того…

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THE U.S. SHOULD DESIGNATE UKRAINE AS A MAJOR NON-NATO ALLY

The United States has long been one of the staunchest supporters of Ukraine’s bid for NATO membership, but even Washington seems to be wavering in its patronage lately. Thirteen years after Kyiv was first promised eventual membership in the Alliance during the 2008 Bucharest Summit, Ukrainian accession seems as elusive as ever, while the country’s security situation has only worsened. In the face of increased Russian aggression and recent Western concessions to Putin, the US should grant Ukraine Major Non-NATO Ally (MNNA) status to solidify the strategic partnership between Washington and Kyiv and send a clear signal to…

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A LAST MINUTE APPEAL

I am an American citizen who supported your candidacy personally and through a coalition named Ukrainian Americans for Biden at the last election. The coalition was formed because many Ukrainian Americans felt that based on your record on Ukraine when you were Vice President, your expertise and commitment would be most helpful in Ukraine’s struggles. This, of course, was in addition to your overall record in Washington for some 50 years and your reputation as a man of principle and integrity. This appeal, however, is a personal one. You are currently on your European trip which includes for me two very important stops, one at the NATO Summit in Brussels and your meeting with President Vladimir Putin in Geneva. My last…

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ПРОХАННЯ В ОСТАННЮ ХВИЛИНУ

Я громадянин США, який активно підтримав вашу кандидатуру особисто та через коаліцію, названу українцями-американцями за Байдена на останніх виборах. Коаліція була сформована тому, що багато українських американців вважали, що, виходячи з ваших записів про Україну, коли Ви були віце-президентом СЩА, ваша експертиза та прихильність будуть найбільш корисними в українському змаганні не тільки у війні проти агресора Москви але також у розбудові демократичних структур і вільного життя. Це, звичайно, доповнювало Ваш загальний рекорд у Вашингтоні за 50 років та Вашу репутацію як людини принципової та…

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“GOOD LAWS NEED TO BE IMPLEMENTED”

A set of guidelines, known as the Nuremberg Principles, were created by the UN’s International Law Commission at the end of the Second World War. They were first utilized during the Major War Criminals Trials that began 20 November 1945 and ended 1 October 1946. Of the 24 Nazis indicted, 12 were sentenced to death by hanging, one in absentia, and the rest given prison sentences ranging from 10 years to life behind bars. Ten went to the noose on 16 October 1946. Remarkably, Reichsmarschall Hermann Göring managed to cheat the hangman by taking a cyanide pill, the night before. In May 1988, in Brussels, I had the privilege of…

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MITIGATING THE NORD STREAM 2 IMPACT ON UKRAINE

Two weeks after the Biden administration waived congressionally mandated sanctions on Nord Stream AG, the company behind the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that the first link of the subsea line is completed and ready for testing (Vesti.ru, June 4). But the Russian president knows it is too early for a victory dance. Amidst a flurry of sharp reactions to the sanctions’ waivers from US Congress and most Central-East European states, and the ongoing US-German talks on mitigating the potential negative impact of the pipeline completion on Ukraine, the future of the pipeline remains uncertain. The Nord Stream 2 pipeline consists of two parallel strings, each with a capacity of…

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BIDEN’S FIRST INTERNATIONAL TEST: CAN HE SAVE UKRAINE FROM PUTIN?

This could be the most important week for Ukraine since Vladimir Putin ordered his troops into Crimea in 2014. We will finally discover how serious President Joe Biden is about defending the Ukrainians from Russian aggression. Biden called to reassure Ukraine’s president that he would stand up for them before taking off for a whirlwind European tour that will take in summits with NATO, the European Union, the Group of 7, and finally a head-to-head with Putin himself. Ukraine will be high on the agenda at all of them, and Moscow and Kyiv will be listening closely. The meetings will take place with Russian troops and military hardware looming over the border in eastern Ukraine. Earlier in the year, Putin even ordered what looked like an invasion force up to the…

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ONLY VISIONARY AND CONSISTENT ACTIONS WILL STOP RUSSIAN AGGRESSION

Isaac Newton’s Third Law of Motion stipulates that for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction. Unfortunately, this irrefutable law of physics is often disregarded by the West’s inconsistent reactions to the aggressive and destructive actions of Russian President Vladimir Putin and his cronies, namely the Belarusian pariah Alyaksandr Lukashenka. Perhaps the best examples include the following: The odd combination of concurrent Western sanctions against Russia for invading Crimea and portions of eastern Ukraine, and Western support for the Kremlin’s Nord Stream 2 project that will provide billions of…

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BIDEN'S BLUNDERLAND

The June 16 summit between Joe Biden and Vladimir Putin is like a sporting event on steroids: pre-game posturing, muscle flexing, girding for battle and goading. But the difference this time is that the trash-talking started in mid-March when Biden agreed with an interviewer that Putin was a “killer”, which he is, and Putin got mad. The very next day, an angry Putin invoked America’s murderous track record, and then wished Biden “good health”, which is Kremlin-speak for you’d-better-hire-a-food-taster. Then he started throwing punches weeks before the match. Frankly, the very notion of a summit – initiated by Biden – was foolish in the first place. “I condemned the idea of a summit between a leader of the free world and the dictator of a terrorist mafia state,” wrote Garry Kasparov, Russian pro-democracy activist and chess champion. “We don’t know what the U.S. gets out of a summit. The U.S. needs…

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HOW BIDEN CAN STAND UP TO PUTIN IN GENEVA

I traveled to Eastern Europe last week with a small, bipartisan group of senators to meet with the leaders of Ukraine, Lithuania and Georgia. These former Soviet republics have become reliable U.S. allies as their citizens have sought a democratic future with greater freedom and prosperity. But they need our help. What I found most troubling on this trip was the renewed Russian effort to destabilize these young democracies. Each is facing increasing pressure from Russia, including military threats on their borders, cyberattacks and political disinformation campaigns. In Ukraine and Georgia, Russia continues to occupy and militarize territory it annexed illegally. The U.S. must continue to stand with…

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UNITED STATES SENATE COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN RELATIONS

U.S. Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today took to the Senate Floor to deliver remarks on the state of U.S.-Russia relations and the need to respond to the Kremlin’s continued aggressions. The Chairman’s speech came in advance of next week’s summit in Geneva at which President Joe Biden will meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin. “I appreciate the Biden administration’s desire for a stable and predictable relationship with Russia but sometimes, we don’t get to choose the circumstances of our engagement. And when we take stock of Russia’s behavior in recent years, we see that in every arena, Putin has chosen escalation over stability and predictability,” Senator Menendez said, calling for the…

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ДОНБАС В ОБМІН НА КРИМ І ЗАЯВА ДЕРЖДУМИ РФ ЩОДО “КОРІННИХ НАРОДІВ УКРАЇНИ”: ЩО ДУМАЮТЬ ЕКСПЕРТИ

Тема Криму останні дні стала обговорюваною як в Україні, так і в державі-агресорі. На цей раз дискусія щодо окупованого півострова розгорнулася довкола контроверсійних заяв Єрмака та Арестовича стосовно ймовірної подачі води до Криму, та Держдуми Росії щодо українського проекту закону про корінні народи. Ми ж дізналися, що ж з цього приводу думають українські експерти. Вода в Крим Директор Центру зовнішньополітичних досліджень ОПАД ім. О. Никонорова Сергій Пархоменко: “Що в Арестовича на язиці, тe у Єрмака на умі. Влада ще…

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VENICE COMMISSION CHIEF LAMBASTS UKRAINE’S JUDICIAL REFORM BILLS

The Kyiv Post reported on June 8, “Gianni Buquicchio, head of the European Commission for Democracy through Law (the Venice Commission), on June 8 criticized Ukraine’s two main judicial reform bills and called for a bigger role for foreign experts. Buquicchio made his remarks at Democracy in Action: Zero Corruption, a conference organized by the Anti-Corruption Action Center and other civil society groups. ‘The bill (on the High Qualification Commission) does not meet the Venice Commission recommendations and we do not support it,’ he said. The High Council of Justice needs to be vetted before it is entrusted with the setting up of the High Qualification Commission. This is imperative or judicial reform will be doomed.’ The bills, which have been…

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BIDEN IS REPEATING OBAMA FOREIGN POLICY ERRORS

Placate Germany. Park Russia. Prioritise China. That is the Biden administration’s flinty foreign policy agenda. This month, the US president will visit Britain for the G7 summit in Cornwall, schmooze with Nato in Brussels, and head to Switzerland for a face-to-face with Vladimir Putin. There will be warm words for friends and cold ones for the Russian leader. But American deeds will tell another story. Putin has little to fear, for Europe is a backwater: the greatest contribution that allies here can make is not to distract American power and attention from the existential question of constraining the power of the Chinese party-state. Only four months ago it looked different. Democrats had spent four years as fire-breathing critics of Kremlin meddling and mischief. President Biden came into office hoping to…

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UKRAINIANS FEAR BETRAYAL OVER PUTIN’S PIPELINE

The prospect of NATO and US-Russia summits in mid-June is creating anxiety in Ukraine, which finds itself in the role of bystander despite the nation’s prominent position on the agendas for both meetings. The news on June 7 that US President Joe Biden has invited his Ukrainian counterpart Volodymyr Zelenskyy to visit the White House later this summer is certainly welcome, but many concerns remain. “I would have preferred it if Biden met with our president before meeting with Putin, but it is better than no meeting. It’s a good sign and important because Ukrainians felt abandoned. At least we are…

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DISINFODIGEST: RUSSIAN INTELLIGENCE CONTROLLED PLATFORMS, CHINESE SANCTIONS DISINFORMATION AND MORE

US Places Sanctions on Russian Disinformation Platforms That Have Targeted Canada If there was ever any doubt about whether the Russian government and its intelligence agencies have targeted Canada with disinformation, they have now been utterly dispelled. Four media platforms have been placed on the US sanctions list after having been identified as being under the control of Russian intelligence services. DisinfoWatch’s analysis of the content published on these platforms indicates that they have published stories discrediting Canadian elected officials from Stephen Harper to Chrystia Freeland and Justin Trudeau. They…

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BLINKEN SAYS NORD STREAM 2’S COMPLETION IS A ‘FAIT ACCOMPLI’

Secretary of State Antony Blinken called completion of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline from Russia to Germany a “fait accompli” and said the U.S. is now working with Germany to limit how dependent Europe’s energy system will be on Russia after it is finished. “The physical completion of the pipeline was, I think, a fait accompli,” Blinken told the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Monday, saying that about 90% of the pipeline was completed during the Trump administration. “I think we have an opportunity to make something positive out of a bad hand that we inherited when we came into…

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FROM THE ARCHIVES: NATO SUMMIT IN BUCHAREST 2008

With the NATO Summit in Brussels approaching on June 14, 2021, it’s a good time to look back at the declaration involving the April 3, 2008 summit in Bucharest, Romania. The declaration clearly states: “NATO welcomes Ukraine’s and Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic aspirations for membership in NATO. We agreed today that these countries will become members of NATO. Both nations have made valuable contributions to Alliance operations. We welcome the democratic reforms in Ukraine and Georgia and look forward to free and fair parliamentary elections in Georgia in May. MAP is the next step for Ukraine and…

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FBI INVESTIGATING RUSSIAN DIASPORA GROUP

The U.S. branch of an important Russian diaspora organization is under investigation by the FBI, according to five sources familiar with the matter. The investigation has included the questioning of dozens of people associated with the group, as well as home and office searches, the sources told The Daily Beast. The group being investigated, the Coordinating Council of Russian Compatriots of the U.S. (known colloquially by its Russian acronym KSORS), is part of a network of organizations committed to advancing the interests of Russian-speakers throughout the world. Some experts say that this…

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ZELENSKY "SURPRISED" AND "DISAPPOINTED" BY BIDEN PIPELINE MOVE

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky says he learned through the press — not any direct heads-up — that President Biden had decided to stop trying to block a Russian pipeline that Ukraine sees as a dire national security threat. Driving the news: Zelensky used an hourlong Zoom interview with Axios on Friday to beseech Biden to meet with him face to face before a June 16 summit with Russian President Vladimir Putin — offering to join him “at any moment and at any spot on the planet.” The embattled leader spoke of Putin’s psychological pressure campaign; his own anger-turned-disappointment at the U.S.; and…

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RUSSIA PROTESTS AS UKRAINE UNVEILS EURO 2020 UNIFORM

Ukraine provoked Moscow’s ire Sunday as its football federation unveiled Euro 2020 kits that feature Russian-annexed Crimea and popular nationalist slogans. Postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic, Euro 2020 will be played from June 11 to July 11 across 11 cities including Saint Petersburg. Russia’s second city will host seven matches, including a quarter-final. In a statement on Facebook, Andriy Pavelko, the president of the Football Federation of Ukraine, said Ukrainian players will wear “special uniforms” and posted photos of the jerseys in the blue-and-yellow colours of the…

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МІЙ СУМ — ОСОБИСТІ МІРКУВАННЯ

Повірте, це не сумні почування, а радше радісні з мого життєвого шляху, які залишаться на ціле життя бо я вже не молодий, а можу заявити недвозначно, що окрім моїх батьків найбільший вплив на мене мала ця установа. Належу я від мабуть п’ятого року життя до одної організації молодечої та виховної яка зветься Спілка Української Молоді. Це молодеча організація, а я сьогодні старий і напевне досмертний її член. Вона повстала ще у 1925 році у місті Києві, але сьогодні мова не про те, а про її друге втілення чи відновлення у 1946 році в Аугсбурзі, Німеччина. Напевно відомо або можна домислитися, що цій організації сьогодні 75 років. Чому для мене ця структура така дорога, що…

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RUSSIA IS USING THE POWER OF 'BLACK PR' TO DESTROY POLITICAL REPUTATIONS AND SPREAD DISINFORMATION IN THE WEST

The agency told Grasset, a popular science blogger, that it would pay him a “colossal” amount of money if he publicly cast doubt on the effectiveness of Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine. The agency, Fazze, asked Grasset to publish videos to his social media channels suggesting, falsely, that the western-made vaccine had caused over 1,000 deaths. The deal required that Grasset not reveal any sponsorship for the posts and would not ask who the client was making the request. The Wall Street Journal later reported that Fazze — which contacted at least two other influencers — had ties with Russia. French counterintelligence authorities believe the campaign may have had…

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DOCUMENTARY ON BABYN YAR MASSACRE TO PREMIERE AT CANNES FILM FESTIVAL

Ukrainian director Sergei Loznitsa’s documentary film “Babyn Yar. Context” has been selected to premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in July. The 120-minute long film is based entirely on archival footage uncovered by Loznitsa, which depicts the events leading up to and the aftermath of the Babyn Yar massacre in September 1941. In a period of two days—from Sept. 29-30—33,771 Jewish victims were shot to death by the Nazis and left in a ravine. Tens of thousands of Ukrainians, Roma, the mentally ill and others were later shot there throughout the Nazi occupation of Kyiv. The estimated number of victims murdered at Babyn Yar is around 100,000, making it Europe’s largest mass grave. “Babyn Yar. Context” is Loznitsa’s seventh film to…

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FOUR SETBACKS TO WESTERN CREDIBILITY IN UKRAINE (PART TWO)

Along with United States President Joseph Biden greenlighting Gazprom’s Nord Stream Two project, and Secretary of State Antony Blinken giving Ukraine’s concerns the short shrift preparatory to Biden’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin (see Part One in EDM, May 27), the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has unexpectedly toned down its endorsement of Ukraine’s ambition to join the Alliance in the future; while Germany and France have given Kyiv reason to conclude that their position is weakening vis-à-vis Russia in the “Normandy” negotiations on the war in Ukraine’s east. NATO has scrapped the meeting of the NATO-Ukraine and NATO-Georgia commissions that had been envisaged to be held during the Alliance’s June 14 summit in Brussels. The…

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TAIWAN'S FATE MAY BE DECIDED IN UKRAINE

Russian President Vladimir Putin recently surged nearly 100,000 troops, along with significant numbers of aircraft and equipment, to his country’s common border with Ukraine. His message was clear: the continued existence of a vibrant, democratic, and independent Ukraine will always be threatened by Moscow’s whims. With barely disguised Russian proxies occupying significant portions of eastern Ukraine, as well as the Crimean Peninsula, it is a message to be taken seriously. Having just returned from Kyiv and the line of…

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ВІД МАЙДАНУ ДО ТРИДЦЯТОЇ РІЧНИЦІ

Закінчився Майдан. Прийшли москалі. Забрали Крим. Вторгнулись у Донбас. Почалась війна. Україна з 6500 воїнів не була готовою до війни. Народ України обрав нового президента в одній турі. Ним став олігарх Петро Порошенко. Порошенко повернувся до політики культурного національного розвитку Ющенка, що успішно відбилося на структурах таких як Інститут Національної Пам’яті, Держкіно, тощо, а також до повної Євроінтеграції. Порошенко був засадничо оптимістичний балакун, часто прогнозуючи успіхи котрі були понад його силу, закінчення війни, вступ до…

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LOCATE UNMARKED GRAVES AT FEDERAL INTERNMENT SITES

A significant fund was set aside by the federal government this week, providing for indigenous groups to engage in research leading to the location and hallowing of the remains of children who died while at Canada’s residential schools. This is long overdue for our indigenous brothers and sisters. UCCLA applauds the federal government for starting to atone for the forced relocation and suspension of liberties our First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples suffered via that system. It is a precedent. Between 1914 and 1920, thousands of Ukrainians and other Europeans were branded “enemy aliens,” forced to labour for the profit of their jailers, disenfranchised, and subjected to…

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ZELENSKYY SUBMITS LONG-ANTICIPATED DE-OLIGARCHIZATION BILL, LEAVES CRITICS WANTING MORE

The Kyiv Post reported, “President Volodymyr Zelenskyy submitted a de-oligarchization bill to the Verkhovna Rada on June 2. Figures who are officially recognized as oligarchs will be banned from donating directly or indirectly to political parties and taking part in the privatization of state assets, according to the bill. Zelenskyy launched what he calls a ‘de-oligarchization campaign’ in early 2021. The bill seeks to create an official legal definition for oligarchs. Oligarchs are defined as persons meeting at least three of four criteria: involvement in political activities, considerable influence on…

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SENATORS TELL RFE/RL PUTIN MUST BE CONFRONTED ABOUT EFFORTS TO 'UNDERMINE AMERICAN DEMOCRACY'

A group of U.S. senators says President Joe Biden should warn his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, at a summit this month that he will be held accountable for his actions against the United States. The three U.S. senators — Chris Murphy (Democrat-Connecticut), Rob Portman (Republican-Ohio), and Jeanne Shaheen (Democrat-New Hampshire) — told RFE/RL in Kyiv that while Washington and Moscow have areas where they agree, such as the New START treaty and denuclearization efforts, Biden should press the point during the meeting with Putin that his subversive actions against the…

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ДВА ВІКТОРИ

Продовження міркувань у 30 років незалежності. Безперечно суб’єктивний огляд на підставі власних спостережень та зустрічей. Вони — ці Віктори- не могли бути більш різними. Одначе історія пов’язувала їх бодай шість років, що глибоко відбилося на суспільство України і на її історію. Одна з більших подій тридцять літної історії відновленої Української держави привела Віктора Андрійовича Ющенка на Банкову вулицю у ролі Президента України. З моєї точки зору це був перший президент України якого можна було уважати Європейською, а не радянською людиною. Він був і є патріотом який намагався передусім надати національний зміст молодій державі. За нього відкрилися рішучо архіви Служби Безпеки України колишнього архіву…

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RUSSIA STILL HAS A MILITARY EDGE OVER UKRAINE, BUT UKRAINE HAS PLANS TO MAKE A FUTURE WAR MORE COSTLY FOR MOSCOW

In April, Russia conducted a massive military buildup about 100 miles from its border with Ukraine, which increased tensions, stoked fighting between Ukrainian and separatist forces, and worried many that another invasion was imminent. The buildup included over 100,000 troops, over 1,000 military vehicles, 200 aircraft, and some 60 warships — including vessels from as far away as the Northern Fleet and Caspian Flotilla. The force was “certainly bigger” than the one that invaded Ukraine in 2014, according to the Pentagon. The moves, which Russian officials said were…

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UKRAINIAN PRESIDENT SAYS RUSSIAN TROOPS REMAIN NEAR UKRAINE

Ukraine’s president said Wednesday that Russia has maintained a massive military presence near his country’s borders. Speaking during a meeting with a group of visiting U.S. senators, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy charged that Moscow had withdrawn only a fraction of the forces it concentrated near Ukraine in April, a buildup that worried the West as well as Ukraine. The Russian buildup came amid regular cease-fire violations in the conflict between Ukrainian forces and Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine, and fueled fears that full-scale hostilities would resume. The Russian military announced…

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HAS BIDEN LOST HIS NERVE WITH PUTIN?

I was one of the Russian opposition members who met then-Vice President Joe Biden at the U.S. ambassador’s residence in Moscow on March 10, 2011. Mr. Biden arrived fresh from his meeting with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who, as we knew, was preparing to return to the president’s chair after lending it to his marionette, Dmitry Medvedev. “I told Putin not to run again,” Mr. Biden said, “that it would look bad for Russia and for him.” The vice president’s expansive candor alarmed his American colleagues, who were visibly unhappy at the turn of the conversation. I broke the awkward silence and pointed out that to Mr. Putin, Mr. Biden and President Obama were beggars who had to…

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ВІДІЙШОВ У ВІЧНІСТЬ БЛ. П. БОГДАН ФЕДОРАК

Інж. Богдан Федорак був провідним довголітнім діячем на громадському, зовнішньо-політичному і дипломатичному полях у США і в міжнародних структурах, які мали за мету повалення більшовицької тюрми народів – СССР, і відновлення незалежних держав поневолених націй. Серед його численних посадових обов’язків були: голова дирекції відомого Українського Культурного Центру (м. Воррен, Мічиган), голова Американських Приятелів Антибільшовицького Блоку Народів (АБН), в.о голови Українського Державного Правління (УДП) 1941 року (після смерті Голови – Ярослава Стецька). Водночас був членом Надзвичайної Конґресової Комісії США по дослідженню Голодомору 1932-1933 рр. в Україні і почесним консулом Української Держави на штат Мічиган. В останньому зверненні з…

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CZECH REPUBLIC SENTENCES DONBAS FIGHTER TO 20 YEARS ON TERRORISM CHARGES

32-year-old Czech national Martin Kantor has been sentenced to 20 years’ imprisonment for fighting on the side of the Russian and pro-Russian Donbas militants. The trial before the Prague Municipal Court was in absentia, but is important both as a clear deterrent to others, and because Kantor was found guilty on 1 June 2021 of terrorism and involvement in a terrorist organization. This is not the first trial of pro-Russian Czech fighters and judging by the recent arrest of five other individuals on terrorist charges, is unlikely to be the last. In the case brought by Ukraine against Russia at the European Court of Justice on violations of the International Convention for the…

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RUSSIA’S PROBLEM WITH THE TRUTH

In mid-April, I came across an article on the European Council on Foreign Relations website entitled “War of Unreality” that struck a deep personal nerve. The piece, authored by ECFR Fellow Gustav Gressel, was written as both an observation and a warning. The observation was that Russia was engaged in creating an “alternate reality” – constantly positing a narrative of current events that flatly contradicted the way that the West (read: the global community of democracies) thought about the world. The warning was that Russia’s attempts at ontological contrariness would sooner or later have dire consequences. While the piece left a distinct mark on me, it did so in a strangely unsettling way. I knew the observation was accurate and that the warning was valid, but for a time, I could not somehow shake off the…

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WHAT TIME IS IT?

The refrain from Washington is, now is not the time. This is a reverberating refrain from the White House and the Department of State which is heard loud and clear in Kyiv and Moscow. Ruminations and puzzlement ensue. Why not? When will be the time? Ukraine’s NATO membership is the most paradoxical issue of our time. Ukraine is the most logical NATO ally. Frankly, Bucharest 2008 was not the timeline. The timeline goes way back to the beginning of the Cold War and even before to FDR and Uncle Joe which led generations astray. Appeasement of aggressors is the most disproven strategy of the last two centuries. It did not work with Nazi Germany, the USSR or…

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А ЯКИЙ ЧАС?

Приспів з Вашингтона є, зараз не час. Це рефрен Білого дому та Державного департаменту, який голосно і чітко звучить у Києві та Москві. Слідують роздуми та спантеличення. Чому ні? Коли буде час? Членство України в НАТО є найбільш парадоксальним питанням нашого часу. Україна є найбільш логічним союзником НАТО. Чесно кажучи, Бухарест 2008 року не був часовою шкалою. Графік починається з початку “холодної війни” і навіть до FDR та дядька Джо, які звели покоління в оману. Заспокоєння агресорів – це найбільш спростована стратегія останніх двох століть. Це не спрацювало з нацистською Німеччиною, СРСР чи Росією. Раціонально, коли…

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NATO AND THE BIDEN-PUTIN MEETING

Given Russia’s cyberattack on the US and others this week to access foreign policy positions just before the vital NATO Summit, G7, and the first bilateral talks between the US and Russia’s presidents, it’s time for a serious Russia reckoning. There has been little to indicate that this will be the case. Unless President Joseph Biden has something up his sleeve he should use the Nobelium cyberattacks to withdraw from the June 16 meeting in Geneva. Although America initiated the meeting, more than likely President Vladimir Putin initiated the cyberattack to obtain intelligence on and to set the tone of the meeting. The cyber hack—Russia’s denials notwithstanding– clearly shows that…

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TO RUSSIA, WITHOUT LOVE: EXPULSION OF DIPLOMATS HAMPERS KREMLIN SPY WORK IN PRAGUE

Russia is facing a cut in staffing at its diplomatic missions in the Czech Republic so severe that it will likely deal an irreversible — although not fatal — blow to Kremlin espionage efforts in the country. The development comes amid the worst diplomatic row between the two former communist countries in decades, and centers on the Russian Embassy in Prague — long suspected of being a nest of spies — and consulates in the cities of Brno and Karlovy Vary. Prague has given Moscow till the end of May to send home most of its diplomatic staff — orders that came in response to Czech intelligence findings that…

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RUSSIA’S ONGOING AGGRESSION AGAINST UKRAINE AND ILLEGAL OCCUPATION OF CRIMEA

Significant numbers of Russian military forces remain in place along the Russia-Ukraine border, in Russia-occupied Crimea, and in eastern Ukraine along the Line of Contact within Ukraine. It has been nearly two months since Ukraine invoked the Vienna Document’s paragraph 16 risk reduction mechanism with respect to Russia’s aggressive and unilateral build-up of military forces in March and April. Moscow refused to provide a substantive response. Russia has increased tensions in an already volatile region. Thanks to Ukraine’s restraint in the face of Russia’s military activity, the conflict in the Donbas did not escalate, though violence continues on a daily basis. It is…

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RUSSIA APPEARS TO CARRY OUT HACK THROUGH SYSTEM USED BY U.S. AID AGENCY

Hackers linked to Russia’s main intelligence agency surreptitiously seized an email system used by the State Department’s international aid agency to burrow into the computer networks of human rights groups and other organizations of the sort that have been critical of President Vladimir V. Putin, Microsoft Corporation disclosed on Thursday. Discovery of the breach comes only three weeks before President Biden is scheduled to meet Mr. Putin in Geneva, and at a moment of increased tension between the two nations — in part because of a series of increasingly sophisticated cyberattacks emanating from Russia. The newly disclosed attack was also…

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FOUR SETBACKS TO WESTERN CREDIBILITY IN UKRAINE (PART ONE)

Within the last three weeks, a series of decisions by leading Western powers seem to indicate a downgrading of Ukraine on the scale of Western policy priorities. Taken partly in deference to Russia, these decisions risk demotivating Ukrainian reform efforts (hesitant though these are) and eroding Western credibility in Ukraine. The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) has scrapped the meeting of the NATO-Ukraine and NATO-Georgia commissions that had been envisaged to be held during the Alliance’s upcoming summit in…

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ANOTHER NOBELIUM CYBERATTACK

This week we observed cyberattacks by the threat actor Nobelium targeting government agencies, think tanks, consultants, and non-governmental organizations. This wave of attacks targeted approximately 3,000 email accounts at more than 150 different organizations. While organizations in the United States received the largest share of attacks, targeted victims span at least 24 countries. At least a quarter of the targeted organizations were involved in international development, humanitarian, and human rights work. Nobelium, originating from Russia, is the same actor behind the attacks on SolarWinds customers in 2020. These attacks appear to be a continuation of multiple efforts by Nobelium to target government agencies involved in foreign policy as part of…

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RUSSIA ON AN ‘UNFRIENDLY’ PLANET: THE PSYCHOLOGICAL ORIGINS OF THE KREMLIN’S DIPLOMATIC WAR

Over the past couple months, Russia and the West (the European Union and the United States) have mutually expelled more than 150 diplomats—high numbers in quick succession that, some observers argue, “did not even happen during the Cold War” (Newsru.com, April 24). And those numbers of expelled and counter-expelled diplomats continue to grow, extending to more and more countries. From the European Union, the Czech Republic (Czechia), Poland, Slovakia, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Romania, and Bulgaria, as well as EU candidate North Macedonia, all became participants of…

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PUTIN AND BELARUS

The Cold War 2.0 just got a whole lot worse with the hijacking of a commercial jetliner in order to abduct, torture, then imprison an exiled 26-year-old, baby-faced Belarusian activist named Roman Protasevich. It was the act of Putin’s proxy – Belarus President Alexander Lukashenko – and reinforces the need for President Joe Biden to reverse his recent decision to pull his punches in stopping Putin’s pet project, Nord Stream 2. This was another Putin-linked attack that must be addressed. “Like every puppet leader, [Belarus President] Lukashenko doesn’t use…

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OPERATIONS IN UKRAINE, OTHER COUNTRIES HELP ARMY DEVELOP CYBER TEAMS

As the Army builds its cyber and electromagnetic spectrum forces and capabilities, it has leaned heavily on lessons from operations in Ukraine and other theaters. The Army is paying close attention to writings that came out of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, Lt. Gen. Stephen Fogarty, commander of Army Cyber Command, said Tuesday at the Cyber and Electromagnetic Activity conference by the Association of Old Crows. “We’re actually trying to discern what lessons learned we need to draw from this, what conclusions that we need to draw that will shape investments both in organization and equipment and capabilities and TTP [tactics, techniques and procedures] as we move forward.” Three years ago, the Army announced it was…

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COVID-19 AT WAR: THE JOINT FORCES OPERATION IN UKRAINE

The ongoing pandemic disaster of coronavirus erupted with the first confirmed cases in Wuhan, China, in December 2019, caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV2) novel coronavirus, the disease referred to as coronavirus disease 2019, or COVID-19. The World Health Organization (WHO) confirmed the outbreak and determined it a global pandemic. The current pandemic has infected nearly 300 million people and killed over 3 million. The current COVID-19 pandemic is smashing every public health barrier, guardrail, and safety measure in underdeveloped and the…

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UKRAINE SAYS IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN INVITED TO NATO SUMMIT

Ukraine says it should have been invited to the June summit of NATO members as it faces aggression from Russia. During a meeting with the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe Secretary General Helga Schmid in Kyiv, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba questioned why Ukraine was left out given spiking tensions with its eastern neighbor. “We understand the desire of the Allies to hold their own summit to discuss Trans-Atlantic unity. There are examples of such summits, including one in Brussels, in 2017. To be honest though, we don’t understand at all how a closed-format NATO summit could be held against the background of the aggressive actions by the Russian Federation targeting Ukraine in the…

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REPEATING MISINFORMATION DOESN’T MAKE IT TRUE, BUT DOES MAKE IT MORE LIKELY TO BE BELIEVED

One of the most frustrating aspects of the coronavirus pandemic is seeing all of the false information circulating around social media. I was inspired to write this article after reading unfortunate (and inaccurate) comments on a local Georgia school district’s Facebook page after they announced that three of its high schools were transitioning back to digital learning. It was breathtaking to see so many inaccurate claims about efficacy of face masks, fatality rates, or comparisons to the flu. My Forbes contributions are typically about weather and climate, but I am often inspired to make connections with other aspects of science too. There are striking similarities between repetitive false information about coronavirus and…

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UKRAINE: A CRISIS RECEDES, A FOG OF AMBIGUITY DESCENDS

The announcement by Russia’s Defence Minister, Sergey Shoygu, on 22 April that Russia would be withdrawing the forces it had assembled for the ‘snap exercises’ launched on 7 April has been met by as much confusion as relief. In the time that has passed since that announcement, statements by the Biden administration and the proposed Biden-Putin summit have increased confusion rather than dispelled it. The augmentation of forces on Ukraine’s borders and in the illegally annexed Crimean Peninsula raised dramatically and by an order of magnitude the level of concern prompted by steadily rising tensions (and Ukrainian casualties) on the…

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TIME TO STOP NORD STREAM 2 NOW: OPEN LETTER BY UKRAINIAN POLITICIANS, LEADERS

This open letter is signed by dozens of Ukrainian politicians, CEOs, and experts in response to US President Biden’s decision to waive congressionally-mandated sanctions on Nord Stream AG, a company building the controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline, as well as on its executive Matthias Warnig, an ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin. Nord Stream 2, a pipeline that would take gas from the Russian Arctic under the Baltic Sea to Germany, bypassing Ukraine’s gas transit system, is more than 95% complete. Without a halt in its construction, it is expected to start operation this year. Critics maintain that if Ukraine loses its status as a transit country and there will be no Russian gas flow through Ukraine, Russia will have no losses when…

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IS BIDEN GOING SOFT ON PUTIN?

After taking an appropriately hard line toward the Putin regime in its early months, the Biden administration seems to be going wobbly. Early on, the administration coupled sanctions on Russian officials for the poisoning and arrest of opposition leader Aleksei Navalny, the SolarWinds hack, and interference in U.S. elections with rhetoric indicating the United States would oppose Russia’s malign influence around the globe. More recently, however, it waived sanctions over the controversial Nord Stream 2 pipeline and is preparing for a summit between President Biden and President Vladimir Putin—two concessions that Putin has not earned and that do not advance American interests. The administration’s decision to waive sanctions on…

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INACTION IS A SIN

When I was young my mother dragged me to Church for Recollections. The guest speaker was Father Mudryj who later became bishop. He said much of note but the only phrase that left an impression on this teenager at the time was, if you see something wrong and you do nothing, this is a sin. Frankly I have tried to comfort myself according to these words ever since. Unarguably the single most important issue for Ukraine is NATO membership. This requires consensual action on the part of the thirty NATO member countries affording Ukraine a Membership Action Plan. A NATO Summit is scheduled for Brussels on June 14, 2021. Prior to that the G7 will meet in London on June 11, 2021. To date…

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БЕЗДІЯЛЬНІСТЬ – ЦЕ ГРІХ

Коли я був молодим, мати потягла мене до церкви на Реколекції. Запрошеним доповідачем був отець Мудрий, який згодом став єпископом. Він сказав багато, але єдиною фразою, яка справила враження на цього підлітка на той час, було те, що якщо ви бачите щось не так і нічого не робите, це гріх. Чесно кажучи, з тих пір я керував себе цими словами. Безперечно, найважливішим питанням для України є членство в НАТО. Для цього потрібні дії згоди з боку тридцяти країн – членів НАТО, які повинні надати Україні План дій щодо членства. Саміт НАТО запланований в Брюсселі на 14 червня 2021 р. До цього “Велика сімка” проведе засідання в Лондоні 11 червня 2021 р. На сьогоднішній день порядок денний…

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BIDEN'S BIG BLUNDER

It was refreshing when Joe Biden was asked whether he thought Vladimir Putin was a “killer” and he said, “um hum, I do”. Then, when asked what he thought of Putin’s pet project, the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to Germany, he said bluntly “I think it’s a bad deal for Europe”. So why one must ask, has he refused to impose all the severe sanctions he inherited from Congress to shut down Putin’s pipeline? Why let Putin off the hook for the Dominion Pipeline hack when his fingerprints were all over it? Why turn around the warship in the Black Sea after Putin escalated by amassing troops and warships on all of Ukraine’s borders? Biden is dealing with a ruthless despot, not an intransigent Republican or wayward Democrat who can be bought off with a bridge project in Kentucky or Mississippi or summit. Putin has…

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THE ANSWER TO UKRAINE’S SECURITY IS A STRATEGIC ALLIANCE WITH THE UNITED STATES

Russia amassed more than 100,000 troops on Ukraine’s eastern border and in illegally annexed Crimea in April. It billed these provocative movements as snap readiness exercises and eventually announced their withdrawal. To date, however, most of them remain, appearing poised to invade Ukraine. Whether Moscow is preparing for an invasion in earnest, posturing in anticipation of NATO’s Defender Europe 21 exercise that began this month, testing the new Biden administration, diverting attention from Russia’s domestic troubles, or some combination of the above remains unclear. One thing is certain: Russia has a superior military force and…

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IS BIDEN BEING PUTINIZED?

Despite his oft-stated resolve to repel Vladimir Putin’s anti-Western campaign, President Joe Biden is in danger of being hoodwinked by the Kremlin. This “Putinization” process has been evident in the early days of each U.S. administration and is based on three misplaced virtues — faith, hope, and charity. Namely, the faith that American and Russian interests are compatible; the hope that summits and agreements will bring durable cooperation; and the conviction that charitable concessions will satiate the Kremlin’s appetite. Two recent decisions by the Biden administration indicate that the pattern of previous administrations may be…

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ВЕРХОВЕНСТВО ПРАВА ЯК ЗАСІБ ДОСЯГНЕННЯ СПРАВЕДЛИВОСТІ

Розробляючи алгоритм демократизації нової незалежної держави, такої як Україна, яка існує лише трохи більше чверті століття після століть переслідувань та експлуатації з боку авторитарного правління іноземних гнобителів, може бути корисним краще розуміння більш ефективної допомоги у вирішенні певних характеристик нині активних демократій із певним терміном довголіття, незважаючи на те, що вони самі мають суттєві недоліки. Вищезазначені теми є внутрішньо пов’язаними і про них слід відкрито говорити у справді демократичних суспільствах або…

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ПЕРЕВІРИТИ НА ПРИЧЕТНІСТЬ ДО КОНТРАБАНДИ, СПІВПРАЦІ З АГРЕСОРОМ ТА ФІНАНСУВАННЯ ТЕРОРИЗМУ

Директор Центру зовнішньополітичних досліджень ОПАД ім. О.Никонорова Сергій Пархоменко звернувся до Ради національної безпеки і оборони, Служби безпеки України, Національного антикорупційного бюро з прохання перевірити інформацію щодо можливої причетності заступника голови Державної Митної Служби Руслана Черкасського та його оточення до контрабанди, співпраці з агресором та фінансування тероризму. «Руслан Черкасський володіє багатомільйонним майном за кордоном. Щонайменше, 2 квартирами та паркомісцем у місті Дубаї (ОАЕ) в елітних житлових комплексах в районі Marsa Dubai. Але можна припустити, що у офіційних деклараціях неточно зазначені дані про майно (не згадується паркомісце) та вказана інша недостовірна інформація…

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NORD STREAM 2: GERMAN AND U.S. CREDIBILITY SUFFERS SERIOUS DAMAGE

In 1987, Antony Blinken, the current U.S. Secretary of State, wrote a book on the topic of pipelines. Part of his study was the Reagan administration’s policy toward the Siberian gas pipeline that connected the Asian regions of the Soviet Union with West Germany. Blinken analyzed the Reagan administration decision not to sanction West Germany for their role in building the pipeline together with the Soviets. President Reagan recognized the unity of the West as more important than West German-Soviet relations and their consequences for the security of the continent. He decided to protect that unity at all costs. Secretary Blinken’s analysis from 1987 was clearly the inspiration for current U.S. policy toward Nord Stream 2. Only that…

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BIDEN GIVES PUTIN THE NORD STREAM PRIZE AND GETS NOTHING IN RETURN

Much has been made of President Biden’s comment that “Nord Stream 2 is a bad deal for Europe.” Yet with the announcement by Secretary of State Antony Blinken that Nord Stream 2 sanctions are not in the U.S. national interest and will be waived, the Russian-financed European pipeline should glide to a speedy completion. There remains only German regulatory approval before Nord Stream 2 will become operational, unless Germany’s September elections yield some major surprises. The Biden administration’s rationale appears to be that President Trump treated major ally Germany roughly, so we should give Germany what it wants — Nord Stream 2. Let our other European allies simmer; Trump hurt their feelings less than Germany’s, so they don’t count. And, besides, maybe a magnanimous gesture will bring…

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OPEN LETTER WITH 114 SIGNATORIES: FOR THE SAKE OF TRANSATLANTIC SECURITY, STOP NORD STREAM 2

We are a group of acting and former diplomats, military and intelligence officials, and experts who have dedicated our careers to supporting Transatlantic security. We hail from countries on both sides of the Atlantic and represent a wide spectrum of political parties from our nations of origin. Over the past decade, the Government of the Russian Federation has engaged in a litany of malign activities aimed at upending liberal democratic norms across Europe and North America. The shocking poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny by a variant of the weapons-grade nerve agent Novichok shows that Moscow has not been deterred by Western actions and…

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WHY THE UNITED STATES SHOULD DEFEND UKRAINE AGAINST RUSSIAN AGGRESSION

In late April, thousands of Chicagoans of Ukrainian descent breathed a sigh of relief after Russia began withdrawing 150,000 troops massed along Ukraine’s border. Until President Joe Biden and other Western leaders imposed new sanctions against Russia and reaffirmed their support for Ukraine, war had seemed imminent. This August, Ukrainians will celebrate the 30th anniversary of their independence. But Ukraine’s sovereignty remains under siege. A friend who lived in Ukraine for many years once told me that to understand the relationship between Ukraine and Russia we need to imagine the abused eх-wife of an alcoholic husband. After nearly 300 years of a forced marriage in which her citizens were constantly brutalized, Ukraine formalized her…

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REVISITING UKRAINE’S NUCLEAR PAST WILL NOT HELP SECURE ITS FUTURE

By mid-April 2021, the Russian military had amassed more than 100,000 troops at Ukraine’s border. Although some have since been removed, the bulk of Russian forces still remain. Russia’s intentions are unclear, but the menacing specter of an all-out invasion has sent tensions soaring in Kyiv and beyond. These recent events are part of a long-standing conflict in the region. Ukraine has been defending itself in an unequal struggle with Russia since 2014, when unmarked Russian troops moved in to occupy Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula. In its early phase, the conflict erupted into a hot war between Russian proxy forces and…

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AMERICANS ARE CONFUSED ABOUT THE HISTORY OF UKRAINE

Concerned about U.S. apathy toward Ukraine, the American attorney Victor Rud, in his capacity as chair of the foreign advisory council for the Ukrainian National Association, composed a letter to the incoming Secretary of State: “I am writing concerning the ongoing developments in Ukraine. Even though Ukraine is the largest European country, the size of Germany, England and Hungary combined, it has been forever a terra incognita for Americans, citizens and policymakers alike. That, together with Ukraine’s sudden and stunning appearance on the international scene, requires a studied reassessment of America’s mindset about “Russia” that has dominated for now almost a century. This is especially so because, regardless of the…

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BIDEN’S GIFT TO PUTIN ON NORD STREAM 2

President Biden has talked tough about Vladimir Putin, but his policy response has been mixed. This week’s sanctions decision on the Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline provides more reason for concern. Axios reported Tuesday that the State Department will send a report to Congress listing entities that should face sanctions over their association with the $11 billion gas pipeline. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said at his confirmation hearing that he was “determined to do whatever we can” to stop the project. Turns out that’s not entirely true. While the Biden Administration wants to target…

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PORTMAN OPPOSES THE BIDEN ADMINISTRATION’S DECISION

U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH), co-chair of the Senate Ukraine Caucus and member of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on European and Regional Security Cooperation, issued the following statement after Congress received the mandatory report from the State Department concerning sanctionable activities by builders of the Nord Stream 2 Pipeline. The Biden administration has announced that it will cite U.S. national security interests and waive congressionally-imposed sanctions on the Nord Stream 2 AG holding company and its CEO, Mattias Warnig. “I am opposed to the Biden administration’s decision to …

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PORTNIKOV: WE NEED TO FIGHT FOR SANCTIONS

Ukrainian journalist, commentator and writer Vitaly Portnikov wrote for espreso.tv , “Thedecisions of the US State Department to partially waive sanctions against Nord Stream II – the actual sanctions remain in place and are strengthened but a waiver was issued on sanctions against the company operating the project and its CEO Matthias Warnig – are difficult to call a victory for Ukrainian diplomacy. These decisions are rightly called a victory for German diplomacy. It is no coincidence that Germany Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, who spoke about the situation around Nord Stream 2 with US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken, called the American decision ‘constructive.’ And this means that the White House considers improving relations with Germany and…

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DYVIZIIA

Having read Per Anders Rudling’s article ‘They Defended Ukraine’: The 14.Waffen-Grenadier-Division der SS (Galizische Nr. 1) Revisited, I am reminded why, a half century ago, I chose to study Engineering rather than the “Humanities” to which my aptitude tests should have steered me. Even at that tender age I understood the lack of objectivity, truth and reality in the Humanities. I knew that my marks would always depend on currying favor with professors; and being a born contrarian, that was never going to happen. The article in question purports to be a…

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UNITED STATES SENATE COMMITTEE ON FOREIGN RELATIONS

Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), Chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, issued the following statement after Congress received a mandatory report from the State Department regarding entities involved in sanctionable activity by the builders of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline. Citing U.S. national security interests, the Biden Administration announced it would waive mandatory sanctions on the company Nord Stream 2 AG and its CEO Matthias Warnig. “I am opposed to the decision by the Biden Administration to waive sanctions on NS2 AG and Matthias Warnig. I urge the…

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INTROSPECTION – WAS I WRONG?

Recent behavioral developments within the Biden administration has caused concern and requires personal introspection – was I wrong in not only voting for Joe Biden but actively advocating his candidacy. To set aside any delusions by Trumsheviks, the alternative was egregiously historically awful, but an introspective and informed voter should take stock of his decision making after the smoke and hoopla of victory have cleared and the new president has had an opportunity to prove himself. And his voters. President Joe Biden has disappointed in several ways including by spending like a drunken sailor. However, since the national debt is by many accounts simply a scare tactic for future generations…

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САМОАНАЛІЗ – Я ПОМИЛЯВСЯ?

Нещодавні зміни в поведінці в адміністрації Байдена викликали занепокоєння і вимагають особистого розгляду – чи помилився я, не лише проголосувавши за Джо Байдена, але активно виступаючи за його кандидатуру. Щоб відкинути будь-які омани трамшевиків, альтернатива була надзвичайно історично жахливою, але самовизначений та обізнаний виборець повинен підвести підсумки свого прийняття рішень після того, як дим і шуми перемоги пройшли, і новий президент мав можливість проявити себе. Президент Джо Байден розчарував у декількох напрямках, в тому числі витратившись як п’яний моряк. Однак, оскільки державний борг, за багатьма оцінками, є просто лякальною тактикою для…

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COVID-19 AT WAR: THE JOINT FORCES OPERATION IN UKRAINE

The ongoing pandemic disaster of coronavirus erupted with the first confirmed cases in Wuhan, China in December 2019, caused by the SARS-CoV-2 novel coronavirus, the disease referred to as “COVID-19.” The World Health Organization (WHO) confirmed the outbreak and determined it a global pandemic. The current pandemic has infected nearly 100 million people and killed over 2 million. The current COVID-19 pandemic is smashing every public health barrier, guardrail and safety measure in underdeveloped and the most developed countries alike with peaks and troughs across time. Greatly impacted are those regions experiencing conflict and war. Morbidity and mortality increase logarithmically for those communities at risk and…

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BIDEN TO WAIVE SANCTIONS ON COMPANY IN CHARGE OF NORD STREAM 2

The Biden administration will waive sanctions on the corporate entity and CEO overseeing the construction of Russia’s Nord Stream 2 pipeline into Germany, according to two sources briefed on the decision. Why it matters: The decision indicates the Biden administration is not willing to compromise its relationship with Germany over this pipeline, and it underscores the difficulties President Biden faces in matching actions to rhetoric on a tougher approach to Russia. Driving the news: The State Department will imminently send its mandatory 90-day report to…

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DEOLIGARCHIZATION IS THE KEY TO UKRAINE’S FUTURE SUCCESS

There are almost 200 different countries in today’s world. The most successful among them share certain common traits. They have all learned to offer the international community something unique and useful, and they have all established constructive domestic relationships between citizens and government. These two ideas are at the very heart of our vision for the transformation of Ukraine. In order to succeed, Ukraine must become a rule of law democracy that works in the interests of the many rather than the few. This is not currently the case. Since the 1990s, a small handful of Ukrainians have dominated…

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LIBERAL NATIONALISM IS THE CURE UKRAINE NEEDS TO TREAT ITS POST-COLONIAL SCARS – MYKOLA RIABCHUK

Mykola Riabchuk is one of Ukraine’s most published essayists. He is the president of the Ukrainian PEN-center and a senior research fellow with the Institute of Political and Nationalities’ Studies at the Academy of Sciences of Ukraine in Kyiv. Published not only in Ukrainian, but English, Polish, German and even unfamiliar languages such as Catalonian (native to the northeastern regions of Spain), Riabchuk’s essays are among the most known Ukrainian humanitarian voices. As he himself admits, he follows the rules of the genre established by one of the leading intellectuals of the French Renaissance, Michel de Montaigne. He maintains that each essay should have a central protagonist that acts…

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UKRAINE OFFICIALS SAY THE FORMATION OF A “CYBERTROOPS” FORCE IS UNDERWAY

Oleksiy Danilov, the Secretary of the National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) in Ukraine, has stated that forming a new “cybertroops” force in the country is only a matter of time now. The official informed the public during a TV interview, stating that the decision was taken unanimously during the recent NSDC meeting. A cybersecurity plan for the next five years was also discussed. As such, President Volodymyr Zelensky is expected to issue a relevant decree soon. The political tensions between Ukraine and Russia are going through another period of clashes unfolding on all levels, from thorny statements to…

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'TWISTED': RUSSIA BRANDS US AN 'UNFRIENDLY'

Russian President Vladimir Putin’s government has branded the United States an “unfriendly” nation, putting a new legal stamp on tensions with Washington in advance of high-level meetings with President Joe Biden’s administration. Russian officials included the Czech Republic on the list alongside the United States, a pairing that points to last month’s dispute over an alleged spy scandal as the cause of the designation. Czech Foreign Minister Jakub Kulhanek ordered Moscow to withdraw dozens of officials from the Russian Embassy in Prague, a crackdown that could force Russia to slash its spy presence at an embassy widely perceived as a regional hub for Russian intelligence operations. “This is their…

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REMEMBRANCE BANNED AS ‘EXTREMISM’ AND POLITICAL TRIALS ON ANNIVERSARY OF CRIMEAN TATAR DEPORTATION

It is seven years since the Russian occupation regime first banned remembrance events on the anniversary of the 1944 Deportation of the entire Crimean Tatar people from their homeland. That ban remains, with Russian-controlled enforcement officers running around Crimea over recent days, issuing members of the Crimean Tatar self-governing bodies and other prominent figures with formal ‘warnings against extremist activity’. This year Russia has added one new, cynical, element. On 18 May, the most sombre of anniversaries for any Crimean Tatar, hearings have been scheduled in four political trials, most of them targeting Crimean Tatar civic activists and journalists. It is no accident that Crimean Tatars increasingly speak of…

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PUTIN’S RUSSIA REVERTS STILL DEEPER INTO SOVIET LEGACY

Under President Vladimir Putin’s rule, the annual May 9 grand military parade on Red Square in Moscow has transformed into the main ideological prop to legitimize his regime. Changes have already been made to the Russian constitution and additional legislation is being introduced making it a felony to publicly question or rewrite the official version of the events of World War II (Interfax, May 5). According to Putin, continued efforts to alter the history of World War II are being sponsored by the West (the United States), “who, after the end of the Cold War, believed they won and want to overturn the post-war global order and, for that, need to…

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CANADIAN INVESTOR FILES MOTION TO DISMISS KOLOMOYSKYI-FRIENDLY JUDGES IN ILLEGAL DISCONNECTION HEARING

TIU Canada, a major foreign investor in Ukrainian solar energy, filed a motion today to dismiss the three-judge panel set to hear its appeal in the illegal disconnection of the Nikopol Ekoteknik solar power plant case. The judges have all previously ruled in favor of US government sanctioned oligarch Igor Kolomoyskyi against Ukraine’s state-owned Privatbank in another court decision1. The three judges that ruled in favor of Kolomoyskyi were V.A. Korsack, O.V. Popikova, and O.O. Yevsikov. The motion seeks to replace the potentially biased judges with objective judges. “There is no illusion of an impartial hearing when the judges have a track record of lockstep rulings in favor of a notorious oligarch who is…

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IN UKRAINE CONFLICT, PUTIN HITS NATO'S CREDIBILITY

Vladimir Putin will attack Ukraine not from land, but from the Black Sea, blocking or seizing its ports and creating a land corridor to connect Crimea with Russia. NATO will condemn the Kremlin’s actions, but will not intervene. After all, Ukraine is not a member of the alliance and is not covered by the guarantees of Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty, which assures the members of their collective defense. This is the gist of a recent Bloomberg Opinion column by retired US Admiral James Stavridis, NATO’s former supreme allied commander in Europe. The leaders of the so-called Bucharest Nine bloc of…

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HOW BIDEN CAN TURN THE TABLES ON PUTIN

The Biden administration billed Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s May 6 visit to Kyiv as showing support for Ukraine’s struggle against Russian aggression. Instead, Blinken served up only rhetorical pablum, retreating from what senior Trump officials (although not Trump himself) did to back Ukraine and returning to Obama-era blandishments. Vladimir Putin must be delighted. Inexplicably, moreover, Blinken equated Russia’s belligerence with Ukraine’s admittedly substantial corruption problems, stating that there is “aggression from outside and, in effect, aggression from within.” This moral equivalence is…

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PUTIN’S KEY UKRAINE ALLY CHARGED WITH TREASON

Ukraine’s leading pro-Kremlin politician, Viktor Medvedchuk, has been charged with treason and placed under house arrest as the Zelenskyy administration escalates its efforts to counter Russian influence in the country. Medvedchuk faces up to fifteen years in prison if convicted. This week’s treason charge is the latest step in an ongoing campaign and comes following the February decision to block three Kremlin-tied Ukrainian TV channels believed to be controlled by Medvedchuk. Weeks after the channel closures, personal sanctions were imposed against the opposition politician and his wife. Throughout the past seven years of undeclared war between Russia and Ukraine, Medvedchuk has made no secret of…

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GOD EITHER BROKE OR SET ASIDE THE MOLD IN A SPECIAL PLACE AND HAS NOT USED IT AGAIN

Fifty years ago I was in the City of Philadelphia on the other side of the fence of a special ceremony at the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral there: the elevation of two relatively young Ukrainian priests to bishops. I did not know the two men but was opposed to their elevation because I felt, like many others particularly of the Patriarchate persuasion, that their designation should have been by the Patriarch of the Ukrainian Catholic Church Cardinal Josef Slipyj and not the Pope. I still believe that, but I have gotten to know at least one of the men quite well. In fact after only several years I acknowledged that no better choice for the Ukrainian people could have been made by the…

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ГОСПОДЬ БОГ АБО ЗЛАМАВ, АБО ВІДКЛАВ ФОРМУ ВИЛИВАННЯ У СПЕЦІАЛЬНЕ МІСЦЕ І БІЛЬШЕ НЕ ВИКОРИСТОВУВАВ ЇЇ

П’ятдесят років тому я був у місті Філадельфія з іншого боку огорожі спеціальної церемонії тамтешнього Українського католицького собору: піднесення двох відносно молодих українських священиків до єпископів. Я не знав обох чоловіків, але був проти їх піднесення, оскільки я відчував, як і багато інших, особливо вмовляння Патріархату, що їх призначення повинен був робити Патріарх Української Католицької Церкви кардинал Йосиф Сліпий, а не Папа Римський. Я все ще вірю в це, але я досить добре познайомився з принаймні одним із чоловіків. Насправді лише через кілька років я визнав, що кращого вибору для…

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UKRAINE CAUCUS CALLS ON STATE DEPARTMENT TO FULLY SANCTION NORD STREAM 2

Today, the Congressional Ukraine Caucus Co-Chairs Representatives Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), Andy Harris (R-MD), Mike Quigley (D-IL), and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), sent a letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken expressing deep concern with the state of energy security in Ukraine and Central and Eastern Europe. In the letter, the Members called on the Department of State to increase efforts to bolster energy resilience by fully sanctioning Nord Stream 2 as mandated by PEESCA as amended and consistent with Congressional intent, increase diplomatic action to counter the purging of Naftogaz leadership, and strengthen efforts to…

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MYTHS AND MISCONCEPTIONS IN THE DEBATE ON RUSSIA

This report deconstructs 16 of the most prevalent myths and misconceptions that shape contemporary Western thinking on Russia. It explains their detrimental impact on the design and execution of policy, and in each case outlines how Western positions need critical re-examination to ensure more rational and effective responses to Russian actions. Underpinning our analysis is the essential argument that, contrary to wishful thinking on the part of many Euro-Atlantic politicians and policymakers, there is little prospect of Russia becoming a more constructive and cooperative partner for Western governments in the foreseeable future. Well-meaning efforts to ‘improve’ the relationship with the Kremlin are…

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ДЖЕЙМС МЕЙС: "АМЕРИКАНЕЦЬ З УКРАЇНСЬКИМ СЕРЦЕМ"

Американський історик Джеймс Мейс (1952-2004) зарахований до провідних у всесвітньому масштабі вчених-дослідників Голодомору. Він був корінним американцем ірландсько-індіанського походження, який, за його словами, “став українцем”, бо “мeні судилася така доля, що ваші мертві вибрали мене…” Під його керівництвом комісія конгресу США по вивченню голоду в Україні (1985-1988) дійшла висновку, що Голодомор був геноцидом, за який відповідальна совєтська влада. За свій вагомий внесок у наукове вивчення Голодомору і українського народу як “постгеноцидного суспільства” був посмертно нагороджений урядом України державним орденом ім. Ярослава Мудрого. Св.п. Джеймс Мейс похований на Байковому цвинтарі у Києві…

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RUSSIA IS A TERRORIST STATE. LET’S STOP PRETENDING IT ISN’T.

Russia has proven, time and again, that it’s willing to flout international law, invade neighbouring states, target civilian aircraft, and use chemical and radioactive weapons, endangering the lives of hundreds of people. As this pattern of destruction wrought by Putin’s regime becomes clearer, one wonders how many more attacks the Russian government is responsible for that we don’t know about yet. Most nations define terrorism as an act committed “in whole or in part for a political, religious, or ideological purpose, objective, or cause,” with the intention of intimidating the public “with regard to its security, including its economic security, or compelling a person, a government, or a domestic or an international organization to do or to refrain from…

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EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT ADOPTS RESOLUTION ON RUSSIA

In the document, the highest legislative body of the EU demands from Russia to withdraw troops from the Ukrainian border, to stop escalation in Donbas, to adhere to the regime of silence, to fulfill the Minsk agreements, to unblock ship entry in the Black Sea. The European Parliament has adopted a resolution on Russia, which provides for the strengthening of sanctions against Moscow in the form of an embargo on oil and gas exports, and disconnection from the SWIFT system in case of an invasion of Russian troops in Ukraine. The text of the resolution on Russia, the case of Alexei Navalny, the military build-up on Ukraine’s border and Russian attacks in the Czech Republic (2021/2642 (RSP)) is published on the website of the European Parliament. The document states, among other…

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FORMER NSA HACKER ARGUES RUSSIAN GOVERNMENT CONNECTED TO COLONIAL PIPELINE ATTACK

David Kennedy, a former National Security Agency hacker, argued that Russian President Vladimir Putin is connected to the actions of DarkSide, the group allegedly behind the cyberattack on Colonial Pipeline. The FBI on Monday said DarkSide was behind the ransomware attack that forced Colonial Pipeline to shut down approximately 5,500 miles of pipeline, leading to a disruption of nearly half of the nation’s East Coast fuel supply. Darkside has claimed it’s not political and only wants to make money without causing problems for society. The Russian embassy didn’t immediately respond to…

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BLINKEN KYIV VISIT ANALYSIS: WHAT NEXT FOR US-UKRAINE TIES?

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited Kyiv on May 6 in what was widely touted as a show of support designed to underline ongoing US backing for Ukraine amid fears over a possible escalation in the country’s seven-year war with Russia. Blinken was the first senior member of the Biden administration to visit the Ukrainian capital. His arrival was particularly welcome as it came following weeks of heightened tensions sparked by a major Russian military buildup on the Ukrainian border. Although Moscow announced plans to begin withdrawing its forces on April 22, intelligence reports in early May indicated…

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INTERVIEW FOR DERIN TARIH

It’s all about geopolitics. The Tsardom of Muscovy, the predecessor of the Russian Empire, was a land-locked country. Muscovy’s first access to the sea was in the far north, but for much of the year the waters there were frozen. Access to warm-water ports became the major goal of Muscovy and later Russia. After gaining access to the Baltic Sea in the west, Russia set out to reach the Black Sea in the south. There it confronted the Ottoman Empire against which Muscovy/Russia conducted a series of wars from the mid-seventeenth to late eighteenth century. As long as Russia persisted, sooner or…

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RUSSIAN SPY UNIT SUSPECTED OF DIRECTED-ENERGY ATTACKS ON U.S. PERSONNEL

Politico reported on May 10, “U.S. officials suspect that a notorious Russian spy agency may be behind alleged attacks that are causing mysterious health issues among U.S. government personnel across the world, according to three current and former officials with direct knowledge of the discussions. Officials do not have a smoking gun linking Russia’s military intelligence unit, the GRU, to the suspected directed-energy incidents, said the people, who were not authorized to speak publicly. The intelligence community has not…

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US CONSIDERS BOOST TO SECURITY AID FOR UKRAINE, SAYS BLINKEN

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said the Biden administration will consider Ukraine’s expected request to buy American missile defense systems and other weaponry in the wake of a Russian military buildup on its border. In an interview with Radio Free Europe on Thursday, amid his one-day visit to Ukraine, Blinken said the Pentagon is in the midst of “a very active consideration” of how to boost security assistance to Ukraine. The comments from America’s top diplomat came after Ukrainian Foreign Affairs Minister Dmytro Kuleba told CNN he planned to discuss a “list” of U.S. military support with…

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PRO-RUSSIAN POLITICIANS MEDVEDCHUK, KOZAK CHARGED WITH TREASON

The Kyiv Post reported, “Pro-Russian Ukrainian lawmakers Viktor Medvedchuk and Taras Kozak were charged with high treason, dealing a blow to the Kremlin’s lobby in Ukraine. Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova announced on May 11 that she authorized high treason charges against two lawmakers, whom she only identified as ‘M’ and ‘K.’ A Kyiv Post source with the knowledge of the charges confirmed that the two were Medvedchuk and Kozak. On the same day, Ukrainian media reported that the State Security Service was searching the house of Medvedchuk in Kyiv. Medvedchuk is a personal friend of Russian President Vladimir Putin and has long been the unofficial representative of his interests in Ukraine. Medvedchuk and his ally Kozak are…

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FOUR AMMO WAREHOUSE BLASTS IN BULGARIA

The Bulgarian prosecution service has found a connection between four blasts at ammunition depots in Bulgaria between 2011 and 2020, as well as a Russian connection, and suspect that all four explosions were intended to disrupt ammunition supplies to Ukraine and Georgia. At a special news conference in Sofia on Wednesday, the Prosecutor General’s spokesperson, Siika Mileva, said that the four cases were joined and were being probed by the Specialized Prosecution Office. Ammo depot explosions have come to the limelight after the Czech authorities blamed agents of Russian military intelligence, GRU, for two explosions on their territory in 2014. According to press reports, the presumed purpose was to…

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HOW GRU SABOTAGE AND ASSASSINATION OPERATIONS IN CZECHIA AND BULGARIA SOUGHT TO UNDERMINE UKRAINE

Bellingcat first reported on the presence of members from GRU Unit 29155 in Bulgaria at the time when a Bulgarian arms manufacturer collapsed into a coma following what was identified as poisoning by an unknown substance. At that same time, the entrepreneur’s son and the production manager of his factory were also poisoned. A possible second poisoning – again with overlapping trip to Bulgaria by members of GRU Unit 29155 – appeared to have been attempted a month later, days after Gebrev and his son were released from hospital. We have previously identified and described operations of an…

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WAS RUSSIA EVER A DEMOCRACY?

Russia is sliding deeper into a kind of kleptocratic neo-orthodox fascism while obsessively celebrating a victory over fascism that was achieved by a different country more than seven decades ago. As things get progressively grim, you often hear people in Russia decry the loss of freedom: We had our chance to build a Western-style democracy but we were too complacent, we believed too easily that there was no way back and we permitted Vladimir Putin to sweep Russian politics clean of opposition and establish a dictatorship. This is another legend. It is a counterpoint to the one peddled by Putin and…

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MOSCOW'S WAR ON HISTORY

In the wake of Russia’s Victory Day military parade on Sunday, Russian lawmakers plan to ban any comparisons between the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany. The parade marks the 76th anniversary of the end of World War II and, as is traditional, will be held in Red Square. The bill follows President Vladimir Putin’s orders to prohibit publicly equating the role of the two collaborationist powers during the war. Such moves illustrate that Putin’s expansionist ambitions not only involve the revision of post-Cold War borders but also the rewriting of European history. The key event in Putin’s restoration mythology is the “Great Patriotic War” that ended in…

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VICTORY IN EUROPE DAY

On May 8, 1945, Nazi Germany surrendered to the Western Allies and the Soviet Union, World War II ended in Europe. On May 8, 1945, for the first time in almost six years, the guns of Europe fell silent. For the first time since September 1939, when together Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union invaded and occupied Poland, peace returned to the continent. On May 8, we pause in commemoration of the millions of victims of this terrible war. We stand united in condemning the scourges of racism, anti-Semitism, totalitarianism and imperialism. We recall our eternal gratitude to the men and women who served…

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THE USSR WON THE SECOND WORLD WAR FOR US. TOO BAD THEY ALSO HELPED START IT

Saturday marks the 76th anniversary of VE Day, the day when the unconditional surrender of Nazi Germany inaugurated peace throughout the Second World War’s European theatre. While Westerners tend to see the war through the lens of events such as D-Day or the Battle of Britain, it was a conflict largely won by the Soviet Union. An incredible eight out of 10 German war casualties occurred on the Eastern Front. As German chancellor Angela Merkel said in 2015 “the Red Army played the decisive role in liberating Germany.” For this, the Soviet Union paid dearly: An estimated ten million military dead (approx. 50% Ukrainian), more than…

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AN INCONVENIENT REALITY

I recently observed a semi academic conference regarding Ukraine’s security and the EU and NATO. The conference was academic in that it was hosted by an institution of higher learning, but only semi since none of the speakers or moderator were academics. This is a trend today to make academia seem more relevant. This proclivity has many manifestation including academic writing in readable or similar to fictional format, sometime even liberating themselves from those onerous facts. Unfortunately often the result is that the work is neither scholarly nor literary, but some hybrid resulting in the reader’s confusion instead of satisfaction. The subject conference was problematic since…

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НЕЗРУЧНА РЕАЛЬНІСТЬ

Нещодавно я спостерігав напів академічну конференцію з питань безпеки України та ЄС та НАТО. Конференція була академічною, оскільки її приймав вищий навчальний заклад, але лише напівфабрикат, оскільки жоден з доповідачів чи модератор не був академіком. Сьогодні ця тенденція робить наукові кола більш актуальними. Ця схильність має багато проявів, включаючи академічну писемність у читабельному чи подібному до вигаданого форматі, іноді навіть звільняючись від цих обтяжливих фактів. На жаль, часто результатом є те, що робота не є ні науковою, ні літературною, а…

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BLINKEN PLEDGES US WILL ‘STAND BY’ UKRAINE

Antony Blinken, US secretary of state, reaffirmed Washington’s support for Ukraine during a two-day visit to Kyiv in which he pledged to “stand by” the country’s side in the face of Russian aggression. The visit, one of the diplomat’s first foreign trips as secretary of state, comes weeks after Russia amassed more than 100,000 troops along Ukraine’s eastern border and in Russian occupied Crimea. Addressing Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelensky on…

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RUSSIA’S ONGOING AGGRESSION AGAINST UKRAINE AND ILLEGAL OCCUPATION OF CRIMEA

We continue to closely monitor Russia’s announced ‘drawdown’ of its military equipment and personnel from Ukraine’s eastern border. It’s worth noting that Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces and General of the Army Gerasimov confirmed Moscow’s recent military activity included “300,000 servicemen, 35 thousand units of weapons, military and special equipment…80 ships and boats, as well as about 900 aircraft, including 15 long-range aircraft and 40 military transport aircraft.” It is concerning that Russia attempted to bolster its own political agenda by threats and intimidation. Unfortunately, this…

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U.S. AND RUSSIA ARE ON A COLLISION COURSE IN THE BLACK SEA

Ukrainians breathed a collective sigh of relief last month when Russian President Vladimir Putin said he would withdraw the majority of more than 100,000 troops that had been shifted to the Russian-Ukrainian border. So did the U.S., NATO and the rest of Europe. But nobody should be breathing easy: Putin isn’t one to stay on the retreat. So, where should we expect his next provocation? Very likely, the waters of the Black Sea. Russia invaded Ukraine in 2014 and carved off the strategically vital peninsula of Crimea, the largest land grab from a sovereign state in this century. Since then, he has supplied money, training, arms and military advisers to separatist forces in the Donbas region of southeast Ukraine. The recent buildup was…

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G7 FOREIGN AND DEVELOPMENT MINISTERS’ MEETING: COMMUNIQUÉ

We, the Foreign and Development Ministers of the Group of Seven (G7), and the High Representative of the European Union, are meeting today at a critical juncture for our people, our planet, our security and our future prosperity. Democracy is under pressure globally; the pandemic continues to pose acute global challenges; new technological threats are mounting; and the catastrophic effects of climate change are increasing. We commit to strengthening open societies, shared values, and the rules-based international order. We affirm that free and fair trade, and the free and secure flow of capital, data, knowledge, ideas and talent is essential to our long-term prosperity. We affirm that liberal democracy and free and fair markets remain the best models for inclusive, sustainable social and…

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80,000 RUSSIAN TROOPS REMAIN AT UKRAINE BORDER AS NATO HOLDS EXERCISE

Russia has withdrawn only a few thousand troops from the border with Ukraine, senior Biden administration officials said, despite signals from Moscow last month that it was dialing down tensions in the volatile region. Senior Defense Department officials said that close to 80,000 Russian troops remained near various strips of the country’s border with Ukraine, still the biggest force Russia has amassed there since Moscow annexed Crimea in 2014. The Russian military did order some units back to their barracks by May 1 — and they did move from the border — the officials said. But many of the units left their…

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ON BOARD A SMALL UKRAINIAN PATROL BOAT CHALLENGING RUSSIAN NAVAL MIGHT

Painted a camouflage patchwork of gray and green, Ukrainian coastguard Boat 23 cuts through the rolling swell of the turbulent Sea of Azov. At the stern, a gunner tightly grips the handles of a single heavy machine gun bolted to the rear, carefully scanning the horizon for any threat. An hour into the coastal patrol, in rough seas about 5 nautical miles off the Ukrainian coast, a crackled radio message cuts through the dull drone of the diesel engines and the lightly armed vessel abruptly comes about. “Boat 23, this is Boat 444,” says a stern Russian voice across the airwaves. “We are reminding you to keep a…

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A NEW SANCTIONS STRATEGY TO CONTAIN PUTIN’S RUSSIA

The U.S. sanctions imposed in April against several Russian banks, technology companies, individuals, and part of its sovereign debt were another step in the ongoing effort by Washington and its European allies to punish the Kremlin for reckless and aggressive acts against Russia’s neighbors and the West. Similar stringent measures are gaining traction in Europe. Last week, by an overwhelming vote of 569 to 67, the European Parliament resolved that in the event of renewed Russian aggression against Ukraine, “Russia should be excluded from the SWIFT payment system, and all assets in the EU of oligarchs close to the Russian authorities and…

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RUSSIA HAS NEVER BEEN CALLED AN AGGRESSOR, – HEAD OF THE OCU ON THE UOC-MP

The Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate still denies military aggression on the part of Russia. The Primate of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Metropolitan Epifaniy, said this in an interview with Radio Svoboda (Liberty), RBC-Ukraine reports. “It is clear that there is a recognized Orthodox Church of Ukraine, and there is a church whose center is located in the aggressor country. Tell me, who will this church work for? They only call themselves the “Ukrainian Orthodox Church”. But this is not really the case. They are an integral part of the Russian Orthodox Church. And if the governing centre is…

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РЕТРОСПЕКТИВНО 2

У підготові до відзначення 30 років відновлення держави яка має ім’я Україна слід проаналізувати ключові її постаті. Я почав з Леонідом Кучмою кілька тижнів тому принагідно піднявши його книгу. Одначе аналіз слід починати від першого президента. Тому я продовжую аналіз президентів України. Його називали лисом як друзі так і противники. Очевидці на З’їзді Народного Руху України бачили, кажуть, як йому причепили тризуб до піджака. Він спокійно прийняв, сказав “гаряче”, скинув піджак і сів. 24 серпня 1991 сірі кардинали – Рухівці внесли до залу Верховної Ради України синьо-жовтий прапор, підставили йому документ проголошення…

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GERMANY IS BLIND TO PUTIN’S CRIMINAL POLICIES, SAYS FORMER POLISH FOREIGN MINISTER

The former Polish foreign minister and current Law and Justice (PiS) MEP, Witold Waszczykowski, said that Russia continuously violates international norms and participates in imperialist actions, but Germany will take no action due to its strong ties to Russia. Waszczykowski spoke in context of the conflict in Ukraine and Russia’s engagement with it. “Ukraine will not win a war with Russia through military means. This is why, in addition to ensuring defensive measures for the country, we should also spend time on supporting Ukraine politically,” he said in an interview for Polish Radio. He explained that one of the methods of strengthening Ukraine politically would be the imposition of harmful sanctions on Russia and…

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МУЗЕЙ ГОЛОДОМОРУ РОЗВИВАТИМУТЬ СПІЛЬНО

22 квітня Міністерство культури та інформаційної політики України, Національний музей Голодомору-геноциду, Світовий Конґрес Українців та Міжнародний благодійний фонд Музею Голо­домору підписали Меморандум про партнерство у проєкті творення Другої черги Національного музею Голодомору-геноциду та відкриття для відвідувачів у 2023 році, з нагоди 90-их роковин Голодомору, основної експозиції новозбудованого сучасного музею. До 30-ої річниці Незалежности України уряд має на меті завершити реконструкцію першої черги Національного музею Голодомору-геноциду, продовжувати будівництво другої черги та розпочати роботу над створенням основної експозиції музею. Меморандум є…

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U.S. SHOULD TURN THE TABLE ON PUTIN IN UKRAINE

Bent on keeping the initiative in a perceived tug of war with the West, Russian President Vladimir Putin really pushed his luck this spring when he faked a mass invasion of Ukraine. Mr. Putin amassed in excess of 150,000 troops on Ukraine’s eastern border, heavy on tanks and assault aircraft. Understandably, he had the world’s attention as Ukrainian leaders and their Western allies, including the United States, tried to guess his intention. Those most likely included testing the new Biden Administration and prodding it to go easy on sanctions. The plan was to give President Biden a…

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UKRAINE CONFLICT A GLOBAL THREAT, U.S. ARCHBISHOP WARNS

With Russia building up its troops in the border with Ukraine, Archbishop Borys Gudziak, the current head of the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy of Philadelphia, is warning the conflict is not only a threat for the region, but for the world. Russian President Vladimir Putin, Gudziak argued, “is trying to make Ukraine fail as a state, bleed the country, through the invasion, economic undermining, and very importantly, information.” Gudziak spoke with Crux over the phone on Tuesday, after Pope Francis’s Sunday appeal for a de-escalation of the conflict in Eastern Ukraine at the end of his weekly Regina Coeli prayer. What follows are excerpts of that conversation. How did you react when you found out that…

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UKRAINE MUST PREPARE FOR PUTIN’S NEXT ESCALATION NOW

Ukraine spent much of April in the international headlines as global audiences watched to see if a massive Russian military build-up along the Ukrainian border would become a precursor to a major escalation in the simmering seven-year conflict between the two countries. Fears of an imminent Kremlin offensive appeared to ease on April 22 when Russia announced plans to begin withdrawing troops from border zone positions. However, few are taking anything for granted. At present, it remains far from clear whether Russia’s declared withdrawal will include the vast amounts of military equipment concentrated close to the Ukrainian border. Even if the…

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ALL ORTHODOX PARISHES IN UKRAINE BELONG TO OCU – METROPOLITAN EPIFANIY

The Primate of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine, Metropolitan Epifaniy, says the tomos of autocephaly, granted to the OCU by the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople, implies that all parishes in the country belong to the new church, which is independent of Russian influence. Therefore, he explained to RFE/RL’s Ukrainian service, that their management by the Moscow Patriarchate is canonically incorrect. At the same time, the metropolitan said further transition of religious communities to OCU control was recently suspended. “But here we need to understand deeper the essence of the issue. Perhaps we even speak incorrectly about transitions as such. Why? The thing is, according to the tomos, according to the…

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INTERNATIONAL COALITION AGAINST FUNDING PUTIN’S NEO-FASCISM

A two-page letter was delivered on April 30, 2021 to the Embassy of Germany to be forwarded to Chancellor Angela Merkel. The letter calls on Chancellor Merkel to halt immediately all construction on Nord Stream 2 (NS2) until Putin takes steps to stand down in Ukraine, stops intimidating Europe, and frees Alexei Navalny. The letter– part of a worldwide appeal to stop NS2 before Russia expands its control of Europe’s energy supply– was delivered to German embassies and consulates in Washington, Berlin, Paris, Sydney, Ottawa and elsewhere. The organizers, a global ad hoc coalition concerned with Russia’s expansionism, particularly in Europe, believes the pipeline is Russia’s way of splitting Germany away from the…

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EUCOM BOSS CONFIDENT UKRAINE COULD BLUNT A NEW RUSSIAN OFFENSIVE

The top U.S. commander in Europe on Tuesday said he is confident Ukraine could repel a new Russian invasion “over time” even though Moscow has massed a large force around the country. The Russian force “mirrors the size and scope and scale of the infiltration of forces that occurred back in 2014,” when Moscow annexed Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula, U.S. European Command’s Gen. Tod Wolters said during a Senate budget hearing. Wolters said while his command remains “very, very vigilant,” Russia’s rapid buildup in recent weeks is a great concern. Wolters, who was in Washington to testify before the Senate Armed Services Committee, also said Ukraine “and their partners in the region are doing all they can to improve their posture each and…

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BANDERA'S ASSASSINATION AND OCCUPATION OF CRIMEA: NETFLIX HAS RELEASED A NEW SERIES ABOUT UKRAINE

Netflix has released a new American series “The Art of Espionage”, which also tells about the events in Ukraine. This was reported by the BBC. In particular, the second series talks about the poisoning of OUN leaders Lev Rebet and Stepan Bandera, as well as the third president, Viktor Yushchenko. The series is reportedly based on the plot of the book of the same name by former CIA Technical Service Office Director Robert Wallace and historian Keith Melton, starring writer and journalist Henry Schlesinger. Wallace and Melton are executive producers and co-authors of the film, and they are among the experts who tell the secrets of the secret services on the screen. According to the publication, the…

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REMEMBERING HERB ROMERSTEIN

As the subject of Russian disinformation comes increasingly to the fore, it is worth remembering Herb Romerstein, who headed the U.S. Information Agency’s Office to Counter Soviet Disinformation and Active Measures from 1983 to 1989 and was the foremost American expert on this important subject. Herb, who died in 2013, had been a “kid communist” in New York during his teen years in the late 1940s, an experience that led him to be a dedicated anti-communist the rest of his life. He knew the communist system, and its influence techniques, from firsthand experience. After 18 years as an investigator and professional staff member on the Hill, including five years with the House Permanent Select Committee on…

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СИНИ БОЖІ – ЦЕ СИНИ ВОСКРЕСІННЯ

В біблійній історії людини та людства подія воскресіння Христового займає центральне місце, вона має переломне значення. Для християн історія людства поділена на два періоди – до і після воскресіння Христового. Ця історія проходить в реальному часі: вона розвивається від народження Ісуса, коли Син Божий з’являється у Вифлеємі в людській подобі, як він навчає людей про Царство Боже, котре наближається, і завершується після страсного тижня в Пасхальну неділю перемогою над смертю . Ісус навчає людей про праведне і згубне для душі людини. Згубний для людини шлях відкривається широким і веде до загину. А праведний шлях, який веде до…

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REJECT PUTIN'S 'RUSSOPHOBIA' DEFENSE FOR TERRORISM

Whenever Western governments confront Moscow’s aggression and state terrorism, they stand accused of “Russophobia.” This misleading epithet is intended to rally ordinary Russians around the Kremlin as the purported victims of international conspiracies. In countering such disinformation, Western policymakers must expose Moscow’s international terrorism and make clear distinctions between Vladimir Putin’s regime and the Russian people. The evidence for the Kremlin’s game is clear. In a blatant attempt at deception to hide a deadly terrorist attack, Russia’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova accused the Czech government of “unbridled Russophobia” after it expelled 18 staff from the Russian Embassy in Prague. Following…

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FEARS GROW IN UKRAINE OF NEW RUSSIAN POWER PLAY

Arthur Volodymyrovych ducked his head down as he walked along the bottom of a trench last week, hoping to avoid sniper fire from Russia-backed separatists positioned less than 900 feet away. He has been stationed here as a soldier with Ukraine’s armed forces for five months—the trenches for far longer. The rules of engagement are simple. “When they attack us with fire, we respond with fire. And so it goes on,” said Mr. Volodymyrovych, whose unit’s sleeve patch reads, “Ukraine or Death,” emblazoned over a skull. “I don’t see an end to this war soon,” he said. Seven years ago, pro-Russia separatists in the…

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NORD STREAM 2 IS PUTIN’S TROJAN HORSE IN EUROPE

Australia’s Ukrainian community is joining an international campaign sending a strong message to German Chancellor Merkel to take immediate measures to halt all construction on the Nord Stream 2 Pipeline (NS2). This will send a strong message to President Putin that economics, human rights, aggression in eastern Ukraine and the annexation of Crimea are interconnected. Some values and principles cannot be bought. Why protest in Australia? Because the values, principles and aspirations of the international community have no…

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NEW PUBLICATION “HOLODOMOR: THE UKRAINIAN GENOCIDE, 1932-1933”

The pattern of reconquest – and further expansion – of the domains of the former Tsarist Russian empire, reconstituted again as a Russia-centered empire now under the guise of the “Union of Soviet Socialist Republics”, was straightforward: destruction of the national, political and cultural elites; the national Church; wholesale executions and mass deportations of that strata of society deemed as “enemies of the people”; and, finally, the decimation of the rural population by a man-made famine in order to dismantle the intrinsic national, social, cultural and economic fabric of the nation. Alarmed by the possibility of “losing Ukraine,” Moscow also…

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US COAST GUARD VESSEL HEADS TO BLACK SEA AMID RISING TENSIONS WITH RUSSIA

The U.S. Coast Guard cutter Hamilton is en route to the Black Sea to train alongside NATO allies and partners in the region amid heightened tensions between Russia and the West over its buildup of forces along Ukraine’s border. The U.S. Navy’s 6th Fleet announced Tuesday that the vessel is headed to the Black Sea, after operating alongside the guided-missile destroyer Roosevelt in the Aegean Sea this week. The news comes the same day that Russia began its naval combat exercise, moving its Moskva cruiser into the region for live-fire drills, Reuters reported. Earlier this month, the U.S. was considering moving two ships into the Black Sea after Russia announced it was sending 10 vessels there amid its troop increase along Ukraine’s eastern border…

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PUTIN’S GAME: WHAT JUST HAPPENED?

Putin gave nothing, achieved everything he wanted, and the door remains open to more. Approximately three weeks ago, Russia suddenly embarked on the most extensive build-up of military forces in and around Ukraine since its seizure of Crimea and attacks in the Donbas in 2014-2015. Estimates ranged as high as 100,000 troops capable of massively expanding Russia’s ongoing attacks on Ukraine at short notice. The forces came from as far away as Siberia and the Caspian Sea (via the Volga-Don canal) and included diverse and sophisticated weaponry, such as attack aircraft, tanks, paratroopers, amphibious landing vessels, and nuclear-capable short-range missiles. Russia closed off vast areas of the…

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ХРИСТОС ВОСКРЕС! ПРИВІТАННЯ І ПРОХАННЯ

З Великим Святом Христового Воскресіння вітаю моїх національних братів і сестер всіх українців в Україні та у діаспорі, тих котрі святкують Свято за Старим Юліанським календарем і тих котрі як я, вже відсвяткували за Новим Грегоріанським. Нехай Воскреслий Ісус дарує Вам щастя і здоров’я та тримає нас усіх особисто, родинно і як націю у своїй опіці Велике значення Великодня для нашого народу не можна переоцінити. Це свято нових бажань і надій і не тільки у релігійному але також у національному зрозумінні. Довгими роками наш народ святкував Великдень у неволі, у підпіллі з надією на Ісуса Христа символу воскресіння нашого народу. Про це писали наші великі поети. Наші в’язні по таборах відзначали Великдень…

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COALITION AGAINST FUNDING PUTIN’S NEO-FASCISM

We appeal to you, Madam Chancellor, to take immediate measures to halt all construction on Nord Stream 2 (NS2) until Putin removes all Russian troops from Ukraine’s territory, and Alexei Navalny is freed. Furthermore, we urge you to maintain a moratorium on NS2 pending reconsideration by an independent commission of experts on its impact on Germany’s and Europe’s energy security in light of the ever-growing threat from a neo-fascist Russia. Lastly, we strongly recommend that you work with the new American Administration in a welcoming and trusting framework for mutual support and cooperation of Euro-Atlantic efforts in…

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ПАВЛО ҐРОД: НАСТУПНИЙ УДАР РОСІЇ ПО УКРАЇНІ – ПРОЄКТ “ПІВНІЧНИЙ ПОТІК-2”

Російська агресія, яка нині триває проти України, Грузії, Білорусі, Балтійських держав та решти Східної Європи, продовжуватиме зростати із завершенням будівництва газогону “Північний потік-2”. Світовий Конґрес Українців (СКУ) закликає Німеччину, Сполучені Штати Америки та усю міжнародну спільноту вжити усіх можливих заходів задля негайної зупинки цього російського енергетичного проєкту, що наближається до свого завершення. “Північний потік-2” проляже в обхід і позбавить значення критично важливий газогін між Росією та Західною Європою, який…

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35 YEARS SINCE NUCLEAR DISASTER, CHERNOBYL WARNS, INSPIRES

The vast and empty Chernobyl Exclusion Zone around the site of the world’s worst nuclear accident is a baleful monument to human mistakes. Yet 35 years after a power plant reactor exploded, Ukrainians also look to it for inspiration, solace and income. Reactor No. 4 at the power plant 110 kilometers (65 miles) north of the capital Kyiv exploded and caught fire deep in the night on April 26, 1986, shattering the building and spewing radioactive material high into the sky. Soviet authorities made the catastrophe even worse by failing to tell the public what had happened — although the nearby plant workers’ town of Pripyat was evacuated the next day, the 2 million residents of Kyiv weren’t informed despite the…

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BATTLE OVER PUTIN’S PIPELINE CONTINUES IN WASHINGTON DC

The battle continues to determine US policy towards Russia’s strategically important Nord Stream 2 pipeline. America has led calls for the pipeline to be scrapped, but the incoming Biden administration has been slow to implement agreed sanctions measures. The outcome of this policy struggle in Washington DC is set to determine the fate of Vladimir Putin’s pet energy project. In December 2020, then US President Donald Trump and Congress approved additional measures sanctions to stop construction of Putin’s USD 11 billion pipeline, a project connecting Russia and Germany across the Baltic Sea, that newly elected US President Joe Biden had previously branded as a “bad deal for Europe.” Just five days after Biden’s…

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RUSSIA INADVERTENTLY REVEALS HOW IT POURED AMMUNITION INTO UKRAINE IN 2015

Independent journalists have used a Russian railway tracking service to confirm how Moscow sent thousands of tons of ‘explosive substances’ to occupied Donbas in early 2015 and to identify the Russian military sites from which they were sent. Although the smoking gun stops on the Russian side of the border with occupied Donbas, it ends at a place inhabited by around one thousand people, and no evidence that any of these vast loads were returned to sender. Denis Kazansky, a Ukrainian journalist originally from Donetsk, explains that, “for obvious reasons”, he cannot reveal the identity of the other…

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PUTIN MAY HAVE PULLED BACK FROM UKRAINE BORDER BUT HE DID NOT BACK DOWN, EXPERTS WARN

On 22 April, Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu issued an order to pull back troops deployed to the Russian-occupied Crimean peninsula (southern Ukraine), near the occupied eastern regions, and near Ukraine’s northeastern border south of the Russian city of Voronezh. However, the announced troop pullback didn’t convince experts of Russia’s peaceful intentions: not everything is being pulled back, Russia has rehearsed many tricks, and previous announced withdrawals were covers for invasions. Announcing withdrawal On 22 April in occupied Crimea, Sergei Shoigu announced the drawdown of the exercise – the massive military build-up on Ukrainian borders was officially a snap test of combat readiness – and assured that the…

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AMIDST SEEMINGLY EASING TENSIONS, PUTIN LEAVES MUCH UNSAID IN SPEECH TO PARLIAMENT

President Vladimir Putin’s annual address to the Russian Federal Assembly (parliament), delivered last Wednesday, April 21, following a long delay, was anticipated to present a whole host of major surprises, but the speech turned out to be surprising only for its extraordinarily low content (see EDM, April 22). Many local commentators mused that the firmly entrenched leader seemingly has nothing left to say to Russia’s disillusioned society (Forbes.ru, April 21). Despite the need to devote greater attention to the country’s social and economic problems, Russian economists were disappointed with the…

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MOSCOW PATRIARCHATE SPREADS THESES OF PROPAGANDA AND TRIES TO KEEP PEOPLE IN THE ORBIT OF THE AGGRESSOR COUNTRY – TSYBULSKA

According to Lyubov Tsybulska, the main task of the Russian Orthodox Church is to keep as many people as possible in the informational, cultural and political orbit of the aggressor country. Lyubov Tsybulska , head of the Center for Strategic Communications and Information Security, said that the Moscow Patriarchate was a major project to spread the “Russian world,” a powerful tool in Russia’s hybrid war against Ukraine. Tsybulska stated this in an interview with Ukrinform. “I am convinced that the Moscow Patriarchate is a very big project to spread the” Russian world”, a powerful tool in Russia’s hybrid war against Ukraine. We need to…

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СМЕРТЕЛЬНА СПАДЩИНА ЧОРНОБИЛЯ: 35 РОКІВ ПО ТОМУ

26 квітня увесь світ відзначає 35 роковини Чорнобильської катастрофи та підтримує Україну у вшануванні пам’яті жертв трагедії, а також відважних ліквідаторів. Їхні страждання та посвята ніколи не будуть забуті. У 1986 році, Світовий Конґрес Українців (СКУ) та його складові організації допомагали викрити радянську владу в приховуванні та запереченні найстрашнішої ядерної катастрофи в історії людства. Відразу після трагедії світові українські громади надавали екстрену допомогу та робили все, щоб залучити міжнародну підтримку. Впродовж наступних десятиліть СКУ та його…

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EUROPE MUST ADMIT RUSSIA IS WAGING WAR

Toomas Hendrik Ilves, former President of Estonia, and Keir Giles, Senior Consulting Fellow at Chatham House, wrote for Chatham House, “The disclosure of a direct attack by Russia on a NATO and EU member state – a massive explosion in an ammunition depot in the Czech Republic back in 2014 – is an action to which a failure to respond assertively would be both inexcusable and highly dangerous. As Tom Tugendhat – chair of the UK House of Commons Foreign Affairs committee and a British Army reservist with operational experience – says, ‘if that is not a war-like act, frankly I don’t know what one is.’ Continued failure by Europe to respond adequately to the…

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SENIOR GRU LEADER DIRECTLY INVOLVED WITH CZECH ARMS DEPOT EXPLOSION

In 2018, Bellingcat and its investigative partner The Insider identified the two persons whom UK police charged with the Novichok poisoning of Sergey and Yulia Skripal as GRU officers Col. Alexander Mishkin and Col. Anatoly Chepiga. In 2019 Bellingcat identified a third GRU officer implicated in the poisoning operation, Maj. Gen. Denis Sergeev. In a subsequent investigation Bellingcat identified Denis Sergeev as the senior operative from GRU’s Unit 29155 who oversaw the 2015 poisoning operation of Emilian Gebrev, a Bulgarian arms manufacturer. In 2020, Bellingcat announced that…

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A WAR IN EUROPE? WHY PUTIN’S RUSSIA IS ESCALATING IN UKRAINE

Vladimir Putin’s decisions in favor of Russia’s military territorial expansion were as rational, in terms of domestic and foreign power politics, in Georgia in 2008 as they were in Ukraine in 2014. A third such decision in the coming weeks or months would be equally so. In 2008, no sanctions by the West followed the de facto Russian occupation of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. The European Union’s only relevant sanctions package related to the Ukraine conflict was adopted less than two weeks after Russia had shot down a Malaysian passenger plane over eastern Ukraine on July 17, 2014. The sanctions that the EU adopted as a result, which remain in place to this date, and that have had a moderate impact on Russia’s economy, were not so much a…

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YOUTUBE SHUTS DOWN MEDVEDCHUK'S TV CHANNELS

Ukraine twice officially addressed YouTube to shut down pro-Russian TV channels. YouTube has shut down pro-Russian TV channels, namely 112 Ukraine, NewsOne, and ZIK, that are associated with the MP from the Opposition Platform – For Life Party, Viktor Medvedchuk. The TV channels can still be found in the search, but broadcasting is halted. Earlier, Ukrainian Minister of Culture and Information Policy, Oleksandr Tkachenko, said Ukraine had twice officially addressed YouTube to shut down pro-Russian TV channels, since they were sanctioned in Ukraine. Sanctions against Medvedchuk On February 2, 2021, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky enforced a…

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MILITARY EXPERTS TOLD US WHO THEY THINK WOULD WIN IF RUSSIA INVADED UKRAINE

Russia this week began huge military exercises in Crimea and along the border with Ukraine, using more than 100,000 troops – backed by heavy armor, airpower, and naval units in the Black Sea – in what many feared was a prelude to an invasion of Ukraine. Then Russian President Vladimir Putin announced he would pull back those troops. No one knows what his next move will be. But if Russia were to invade, how likely would it be that it could “win”? We asked some experts who have studied both militaries for an assessment. Russia’s military, like its population, is more than triple the size of Ukraine’s. But…

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THANK YOU, BUT…

We need more. The recent Russian apparent pullout provides time and opportunity for reassessment. No one believes that hostilities between Russia and the rest of the world have ended, least of all Ukrainians. What has become more apparent is that fortunately the Western world is more sensitive and prepared to oppose Russian aggression, albeit to what extent remains unclear, in this case fortunately. What is also clear is that Ukraine’s President Zelensky may be a neophyte yet he is not a clown actor but a leader with a clear agenda even if that agenda is not fully embraced by the global civilized community. Throughout the recent crisis President Zelensky has lobbied seeking Western commitment to the defense of Ukraine. In that…

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PUTIN'S UKRAINE BLACKMAIL

Russian aggression against Ukraine is mounting quickly on Ukraine’s eastern border and in its partial Black Sea blockade. Russian ground and air forces are massing for what the Russians say are training exercises but may be a prelude to a full-scale invasion. President Biden has assured Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky of our “unwavering support” for Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. But Mr. Biden’s words are not supported by any serious action. Mr. Biden did institute economic sanctions against Russia earlier this month but they are clearly inadequate to change Russian President Vladimir Putin’s behavior. Mr. Biden and Secretary of State Antony Blinken have said…

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UKRAINE — THE LINE IN THE SAND IN THE NEW COLD WAR

Ukraine has struggled since 1991 to get away from its Soviet past, and this year — as many of its anti-corruption efforts have been coming to fruition — Russia threatened its existence once more. Earlier this week, Moscow amassed more troops along Ukraine’s borders than it did before it invaded the country in 2014. It also stopped diesel fuel shipments and restricted flights over Crimea and the Black Sea. These aggressive moves put the world on edge, but U.S. President Joe Biden vowed to support Ukraine, and Britain dispatched two warships to the region. On April 21, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky warned his people that war may be imminent and requested a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin to avert…

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CONSTRUCTING THE TERROR: RUSSIA’S FORGED CASES OF “UKRAINIAN EXTREMISM”

An old textbook rule for authoritarians says: when you have troubles at home, divert attention elsewhere. Since the occupation of Crimea and start of the undeclared war with Ukraine, the Russian authorities have increasingly focused Russians’ attention on alleged Ukraine-connected extremists and terrorists, sentencing them in fabricated cases. A recent escalation in this campaign has coincided with the recent build-up of Russian troops and hardware at the Ukrainian border. What can this hunt for the Ukrainian “enemy” tell us about Russia’s plans? The “spies” and the “terrorists” In late March this year, the Military Court in the city of Rostov-on-Don sentenced Oleg Prykhodko, a 63-year-old Ukrainian living in Crimea, to 5 years in a high-security prison. The…

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US MISSION TO THE OSCE

Ambassadors Çevik and Grau, the United States welcomes you back to the Permanent Council. We are grateful for your tireless efforts to bring about a peaceful resolution to the Russia-led conflict in eastern Ukraine. Chief Monitor Çevik, you opened your most recent report with a concise state of play, noting that the situation on the ground, while improved if compared to ceasefire violations prior to July 27, 2020, is increasingly fragile; that civilians suffer hardships due to the prolonged closure of entry-exit crossing points; and that the Special Monitoring Mission faced considerable impediments to its movement, overwhelmingly in areas controlled by Russia-led forces. 93%, in fact, of the reported movement…

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UKRAINE, TAIWAN, AND THE BULLIES

President Joe Biden overcame a stutter, bullies, and personal losses to become the most powerful man in the world. He is tough and not to be underestimated, but he has more than met his match, so far, when it comes to Vladimir Putin and possibly China’s Xi Jinping. This may be due to the fact that two of Biden’s top advisors —Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Climate Change Envoy John Kerry — are unaccustomed to street fighting and have been mostly immersed in the world of politesse, diplomacy, and policy. But America is up against a thuggish Putin who has been mobilizing militarily around Ukraine, and, in…

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US SENATE COMMITTEE ADVANCES UKRAINE SECURITY PARTNERSHIP ACT, WHICH WOULD AUTHORIZE $300 MILLION IN MILITARY FINANCING

The US Senate Foreign Relations Committee advanced the Ukraine Security Partnership Act. The Committee stated, “This legislation increases and improves U.S. military support to Ukraine and sends a message that the United States will continue to support the people of Ukraine, their ability to defend themselves, and the country’s democratic transition.” Committee Chairman Senator Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) stated, “I am glad that the Committee overwhelmingly signaled the United States’ unwavering, bipartisan dedication to our friends in Ukraine, who are on the frontlines of Russian aggression, with the passage of this bill. As Putin continues to escalate the situation along the border with Ukraine, we are…

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‘NO EASY WALK’: STRONGER UKRAINIAN ARMY CONFIDENT OF CHECKING RUSSIAN AGGRESSION

When Yuliy Mamchur, a Ukrainian air force colonel, tried to fend off a Russian attack on his base on the Crimean peninsula in 2014, his troops were hardly equipped for their mission. “We stood for a month surrounded by well-armed elite troops. We had only pistols and three machine guns to defend the air base,” Mamchur recalled. The pitiful state of Ukraine’s military was exposed seven years ago when Russia seized the peninsula and later stirred up a separatist war in Donbas, eastern Ukraine. Troops lacked flak jackets and wore old Soviet helmets incapable of stopping bullets. Tanks and many…

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RUSSIA EFFECTIVELY SEIZES CONTROL OF SEA OF AZOV, THREATENING UKRAINE

The international community has focused on Moscow’s buildup of forces on land adjoining Ukraine, concerned that such a concentration of Russian military power will be used against its neighbor (see EDM, April 8, 15, 19). But as Moscow routinely insists, it has the right to shift its forces about on its own territory. In its view, these units would only be a problem if the Russian government were to send them across the border. In contrast, in the waters off Ukraine, Russia, by its latest actions, is already in violation of international law: Moscow has announced that it is unilaterally closing the Kerch Strait between the…

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U.S. CONSIDERS MORE WEAPONS SHIPMENTS TO UKRAINE AMID RUSSIAN BUILDUP

The White House is weighing requests from Kyiv to send additional weaponry to Ukraine as it faces the biggest military buildup of Russian forces on its border in nearly a decade. Consideration of the request is in its early stages, according to people briefed on the internal deliberations. The administration has been reluctant to provoke Moscow on the military front, and scrapped plans last week to send two Navy warships to the Black Sea amid rising tensions in the region. In recent weeks, Russia has built up roughly 120,000 troops along Ukraine’s eastern border, intruded into…

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SATELLITE IMAGES SHOW RUSSIA’S EXPANDING UKRAINE BUILDUP

Russia has moved warplanes to Crimea and bases near Ukraine to an extent greater than has previously been disclosed, adding to its capability for political intimidation or military intervention, according to commercial satellite photos of areas being used for the military buildup. The photos, which were reviewed by The Wall Street Journal, show Su-30 fighters lined up on a runway at an air base in Crimea. The aircraft, which are shown in a satellite photo from April 16, hadn’t been there in late March. Other Russian military units on the Crimean peninsula include airborne troops, motorized rifle and armored units, attack helicopters, smoke generators, reconnaissance drones, jamming equipment and a military hospital, the photos indicate. Those forces and…

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MILITARY AID FOR UKRAINE: OFFSETTING MOSCOW’S ASYMMETRIC EDGE

Russia’s continuing threats to invade Ukraine, or otherwise traumatize it by military force, are predicated on Russia maintaining its asymmetric edge over Ukraine in several key areas of non-nuclear military capability. Russia’s Soviet-derived military thinking emphasizes moving only when the correlation of forces offers enough of an advantage that a decisive outcome is produced. While many Western observers see the invasion of 2014 to have been an outstanding success for Russia and defeat for Ukraine, against Russia’s sought objectives in the Novorossiya campaign, this is not really the case. The…

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MAJOR ARCHBISHOP: UKRAINIANS LIVING IN ‘PSYCHOLOGICAL TERROR’ AS RUSSIAN TROOPS GATHER AT BORDER

The leader of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church said his countrymen are living in constant terror of an attack as Russian troops gather at the border. In an interview with ACI Prensa, CNA’s Spanish-language news partner, Major Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk said: “We live in constant psychological terror and, according to the latest polls, 60% of the Ukrainian population lives in fear of a military attack by the Russian side.” “On behalf of the Ukrainian people, I ask you to pray for peace in Ukraine, and for the involvement of the international community to resolve the conflict and to prevent a worldwide blaze exploding from this fuse,” the 50-year-old major archbishop said. Ukraine is a…

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BRITISH WARSHIPS HEAD FOR BLACK SEA AS RUSSIAN TROOPS MASS ON UKRAINIAN BORDER

Royal Navy warships will sail for the Black Sea next month as tensions continue to rise between Ukrainian and Russian forces. Putting the ships off the coast of Ukraine is intended to show solidarity with Kyiv and Nato allies in the region after President Biden decided to cancel the deployment of two American warships to the Black Sea last week for fear of escalating the crisis over the massing of Russian troops. One Type 45 destroyer armed with anti-aircraft missiles and an anti-submarine Type 23 frigate will peel off from the Royal Navy’s carrier task group in the Mediterranean and head through the…

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HOW TO DEFEAT VLADIMIR PUTIN

However much Western leaders may claim that they are not at war with Russia, Russian President Vladimir Putin has made it crystal clear that Russia is at war with the West. A series of aggressive actions over the past decade leave no doubt that the Kremlin is battling Western interests and aims to expand the Russian state at the expense of its neighbors. The arms build-up next to Ukraine’s borders and in occupied Crimea are a continuation of the war against Russia’s most prized neighbor. An independent and successful Ukrainian state not only dents Russia’s imperial ambition; it also serves as a democratic model that can inspire Russia’s citizens to replace their kleptocratic autocracy. In response to Moscow’s cyber and…

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MOSCOW MOVING 15 WARSHIPS FROM CASPIAN SEA TO WATERS OFF UKRAINE

The Russian Ministry of Defense announced today (April 13) that Moscow is sending 15 naval vessels from its Caspian Flotilla to waters off Ukraine to take part in military exercises there. Earlier, Russian and Ukrainian media had reported stories about a smaller number. Although the vessels must pass through a 100-kilometer-long canal with more than 13 locks, they will likely be able to arrive before other ships, sent from Russia’s Baltic Fleet, make it to the Black Sea basin. Moreover, although the ships are smaller and less heavily armed than the ones coming from the Baltic, the Caspian Flotilla has, over the last…

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PUTIN'S RASPUTIN

There are plenty of topics to tackle, and I’ve devoted my last two newsletters to writing about Vladimir Putin, Ukraine, and Alexei Navalny. Today I’m returning to these issues because I believe what’s going on in Eastern Europe is not a neighborhood squabble nor is it random. This is about a trillionaire with a nuclear arsenal whose fascist playbook is not about rapprochement nor peace. Putin disdains and damages the World Order and wants to replace it and yet the world’s leaders — led by President Joe Biden — do not fully understand who and what they are up against. Last week, Biden blinked. He inexplicably sent two warships to the Black Sea and turned them around. Then he made a speech declaring America’s “unwavering” support for…

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AS UKRAINE CONFLICT INTENSIFIES, SERB VOLUNTEERS PREPARE FOR BATTLE

Serbs who fought for Moscow-backed militias in the conflict in eastern Ukraine say they are ready to take up arms again as a massive Russian military build-up on the border raises fears of more violence. As the simmering conflict in Ukraine heats up again, there have been indications that volunteer fighters from the Balkans have been heading back to the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine again to fight for Russian-backed separatist forces. Amid the rising tensions, Serbian volunteer Dejan Beric, who served with Russian-backed forces in the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic as a…

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THE HUGE RUSSIA 2016 ELECTION STORY YOU PROBABLY MISSED

On Thursday, the Biden administration imposed new sanctions on Russia for its role in actively interfering in the 2016 presidential election. You probably heard about that. But what you likely missed was that, as part of the justification for the sanctions, the Treasury Department released a whole trove of findings about what happened in 2016 and beyond. We knew — thanks to special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation — that Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his deputy, Rick Gates, passed along internal polling and other strategy documents to a man named Konstantin Kilimnik, a Russian-linked intelligence operative. And, we…

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MERKEL AND MACRON TELL PUTIN TO PULL HIS FORCES BACK

Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron have told Vladimir Putin to pull his forces back after the Ukrainian navy threatened to shoot Russian FSB boats harassing Ukrainian ships near the Kerch Strait. The European leaders’ demands came as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called for a summit with his Russian counterpart and a new ceasefire. French President Macron hosted Zelensky for talks in Paris – later joined by German Chancellor Merkel by video conference – in a show of support for his pro-Western government in the face of Moscow’s assertive stance. The tensions have escalated seven years after the…

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US MISSION TO THE OSCE

The United States joins other participating States in expressing our continued and considerable concern over Russia’s military activities near Ukraine’s border and in Russia-occupied Crimea. These provocations only threaten to further destabilize an already tense and fragile security situation. We regret that Russia has to date refused to participate in this joint FSC-PC meeting and a previous meeting with Ukraine, and that Moscow has not clarified the situation on the ground regarding the location, dates, and purpose of the military activity and information on the forces involved, as requested by Ukraine under Vienna Document Chapter III, Risk Reduction. The provision of such…

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PUTIN CRITICS CITE SPUTNIK V VACCINE DEBACLE AS ATTEMPT TO FURTHER DIVIDE EUROPE

On a chilly Monday morning, the first day of March, airport workers in Košice, Slovakia, unloaded crates marked “Sputnik V” and stamped with the accompanying boast “the first registered COVID-19 vaccine,” from a military cargo plane that had just landed from Russia. Slovakia’s Prime Minister Igor Matovič, a media mogul in office for only a year who had earned a reputation as a showman while heading the anticorruption Ordinary People and Independent Personalities party, staged a press conference in front of the plane to unveil the surprise that he’d negotiated in secret with Russian President Vladimir Putin’s government: 200,000 doses of Sputnik V — with another 2 million doses on order. Telling reporters that Slovakia couldn&rsquo