Monday, June 30, 2014

English-style (but very French) humor as a medicine for sad moods

The "French team" (who are doing an absolutely incredible job every day on have just sent me an English-style limerick, but originally written in French by Henri Suhamy, an Anglicist specialized in Shakespeare, and then re-written, again by him, in English. Here are both versions:

Original French version

Le nouveau président Petro Porochenko
Joue un jeu dangereux en visant le banco.
Le bruit de la guerre en Ukraine
Donne à chacun de la migraine
Et peut faire tomber les murs de Jéricho.
English version:
There's a new president in the Ukraine
Who from day to day has to rack his brain.
The awkward situation
Causes so much crispation
That the poor fellow suffers from dire strain.
Thanks guys, I sure needed the smile today :-)

Amitiés à tous,

Le Saker

Situation report evacuees from Auslander

We received the first 5 evacuees who will be benefactors of our efforts. We have two adult women and three children. I will give no information about this group or how they came to us beyond these are special people whom no one else could help. When this war is over I will tell some details of the evacuees. This makes a total of 8 women and children we have gotten out. The first group of 3 women were all mothers of an earlier group of children evacuated that we were not involved with in regards to their actual evacuation. Mother is taking care of their food and lodging.

This group was picked up and taken to the facility where they will live for the duration. Their journey was not uneventful. After we arranged all for them, VCO spent three hours talking to them and translating for me as they rotated out to shower and clean up. They are exhausted but three were anxious to tell their story. The best therapy is for them to talk about their experiences. 

I am pretty good at gently getting information from people. When 3 people tell me the same story over the course of 3 hours and often not all 3 are together, and I from time to time go back to conversations an hour or two before the moment and ask a question and get the same basic answer, I tend to believe them. Plus, VCO spent some time speaking to them alone and she got exactly the same story with added details.

First, a caution.

All identifying information such as street names and numbers, personal names, places of work etc is redacted. These people are in danger simply because of who they are. We must protect them but we must also get their story out. The information they gave was detailed and voluminous, far more than what is written here.

The evacuees speak.

'I worked in a bank office. I have been there for some years. I have not been paid since March. Every week we were promised we would be paid next week. 3 weeks ago masked and armed men came to the office with manager. They ordered us to leave. We stood outside and watched as the men loaded all the computers, machines and records in to two large cars (trucks) and last they brought all the money in large black metal boxes. We asked them about our money and they pointed their automats at us and told us to shut up. They left. That night the bank office was burned. Our самообороны (defense forces) was blamed for the fire. It was not our men, it was the men who took all the money.

Militsiya (police) are useless. They don't work, they are cowards, they are waiting to see who wins this war. When there is trouble we send children running to get самообороны to us.

Shooting started. They shoot from the radio tower on the hill at us every day and every night. Many shops have been damaged. Almost all shops have stopped working now. No one could get their money from banks. All banks are closed. Every day someone is killed near us. We do not have any самообороны post in our area. The guns are very big. We can hear them when they shoot. We have nowhere to hide.

The factory where my husband worked was hit. It burned and there was some kind of white powder on the ground when we went to see the factory. самообороны told us not to touch the powder, it was phosphor and would burn our hand. There are no fire cars to put water on the fire. There is no water for them to use. My husband was not paid from May. His owner ran to Kiev long ago.

My husband went to самообороны. He told me I have to take the children and leave. We could not leave, there is no way out for us. We have no money to pay someone to help us. Our city is blocked by the enemy. No one can come in or out. We have no water, no electric, almost no food, no milk for the children, just porridge I make with water I get from a water car самообороны brings sometimes.

4 days ago my husband told me to pack very few things and be ready to leave. I do not question my husband. 2 days ago my husband in the night told me to wake the children, it was time to leave. He took us down the stairs to a car waiting for us. The house (flats building) across the street was burning at the top. I kissed my husband goodbye, he kissed our children and we left. He told me there was a way he will let me know every day he is alive. He said I would understand when I got to safety. He gave me 50 griven (4$), that is all he had. I did not know where we were going, he did not tell me.

(She began to weep) I thank God my children are safe. I am worried of my husband.' 


'I was in school when the first attack came. We had heard shooting before, lots of shooting. We had gone to the protests in city square when Kiev said we could not speak Russian any more. Russian is the only language I know. I go to internet and I read the rule of European Union and United Nations. They say we can speak Russian language. Why will not the politicals in Kiev allow us to speak? I was born in Ukraine, why do they tell me I have to leave? I do not understand.

There was a very loud noise, we all ran out from school to see what it was. There was a hole in the street, not a big hole. The air smelled of ammonium and sulfur. I know this smell from chemical class. There was a woman in the grass. She was not moving, her packet of food was on the ground. She had some potatoes and carrots and a packet of milk. The milk packet was broken, milk was on the ground. Our teacher yelled at us to go back to school, told us not to look. I saw the woman, her back had blood. I hoped she was OK. I know now she was dead. Why did they kill her? My mother knew her. Now she is dead. Why? My mother cried.

Our flat is on the top floor. We can see the mountain from our flat. It is not a mountain. I and my mother have been there, from there you can see all our city and the near villages and towns and the railroad and bridges and the big roads. When the big guns started to shoot I could see the flame as they shoot. My girlfriends and I would sit in our flat after school and watch them. We are clever, we learned fast how to know what was shooting. We could see explosions in distant areas, there was smoke and fire in the factories. Soon there was fires in flats houses. The shooting came closer to our house (flats building).

My mother said we had no money. She said her work did not give her money. She said father's work did not give him money. It is hard to find food now, almost all shops and magazines are closed, the shooting is to us now. Our самообороны told us it is Ukraine Army shooting at us. Why are they doing this? We are Ukrainian! I do not understand.

My last day at school my friends told me Aellona was dead. Her mother sent her out to find bread. She went to shops. All were closed. She was walking home. A bomb fell right beside her. My friends say she was in pieces. I liked her, she was my friend. Now she is dead. Why? What did she do? I miss her. She was very nice.

Father came one night and said we have to leave. Father would not come with us. I asked mother why father was not coming with us, she said she would tell me later. There was an old car (van) waiting, there was another woman and a child in the car. Father kissed us. We left. We drove all night on mud roads. A door on the car was missing, it was very cold and wet. The driver said he was lost. The other woman yelled at him, she told him mat (obscenities). She took his map and read it with her light. She told us to get out of the car, she would take us. The driver asked for money, the woman told him more mat. He left. We walked for a long time until we came to a river.

My (sibling) could not walk anymore, ---- is small. I carried and my mother carried ----. The other woman told us to be strong, soon we would be safe. She carried her child. We came to a road and we walked along the road. We came to a block post, I saw the Ukraine flag. I was afraid. My mother told me to be silent. Young soldiers stopped us, they all had guns. I looked and I saw the Russian flag on the other side of the water. A soldier took the other woman's passport and started to yell at her with mat. She kicked him and he fell. She told us to run to the other side. There was a lot of cars going across the bridge. Why were the soldiers yelling at us with mat? I did not understand but we all ran.

The soldiers on the other side shouted to us to come, they pushed us through their line, yelling at us to hurry. I was not afraid of these soldiers.

Women came to us. The women took us to a tent and gave us tea. It was warm in the tent, there was a stove in one side. It was raining and cold. My (sibling) was shivering. The women wrapped ---- in a blanket and put ---- beside the stove and they gave us all blankets. They spoke a different Russian than we speak.

A officer came in to tent. He asked the other woman who we were. She told him where we are from. He spoke to a soldier and told us to be calm, someone would come for us. We waited. After a long time a big white car arrived. Two women and two men came to us. One woman spoke to my mother and the other woman. When my mother and the other woman spoke the woman spoke to one of the men. I was afraid. We got in the car. It was warm. We went for a long time. We came to a strange looking Church. Women were waiting for us. We were taken to warm rooms with beds. We were given tea and small breads. My mother and the other woman cried. A Priest came to us. He told us we were safe. I can not sleep. I am afraid.' Child.

'My husband works in the mine. I work in magazine. My husband was paid until the end of May. He worked very hard. I have not gotten my money for many weeks and now magazine has bombed. It burned.

The protests started when Kiev passed the law saying no Russian can be used or spoken in Donbas. Russian is our language, it is all we speak. I went to demonstrations and meetings. At one meeting a man, a deputat (parliament member) from Svoboda Party threatened us, he called us traitors, he called us moskali. He had men with him with pistols. He said they will be no talks about what we want, he said we must do what we are told to do. We did not want to leave Ukraine, Ukraine is our homeland, we are born here and our children. We told him this. He began to shout, called us mat, said we wanted Russia not Ukraine. He said the army would come and kill all us and his fighters would come and kill all of us. He left. One man at the meeting was killed that night after he left the hall. He was shot on the street at the bus place. People were standing around him. Two men walked to him and shot him. He had wife and three children.

Soon the army came. They fought our самообороны and killed some of them. Our men had no automats then, just some old guns from the Great Patriotic War. Army took Karachun Mountain and began to shoot at us from the television tower. They can see everything. They do not shoot at our самообороны places they almost always shoot at our houses (flats buildings), magazines, markets, industry places, schools and mines. People began to die or be hurt.

At the end of our street on the next street a house of flats was hit on the roof and the sides. My neighbor told me 4 people died in the building, old women and one child 3 years. I began to be afraid. My husband began to be angry.

Every day the army shoots, sometimes at night and sometimes day. My child is in terror, the child screams at the sounds the child will not eat. Electric went off and now is only sometimes on and not long. We have no water next. Our soldiers bring water wagons to the districts on a schedule. We get 12 liters for us 3 days. Our gas is off, the station for pumps is bombed.

We started to hear stories of many young men coming to city. I saw some in our district. They look everywhere. They do not speak Russian like we do they have west accent. They look angry all times. самообороны says they are right sector from Kiev fighting. Militsiya will not arrest them. Militsiya are cowards, they just are waiting for the war to be over and they will criminal mafia again. самообороны does not have enough men to fight the enemy and arrest these right sector. We are afraid that when the enemy attacks the right sector will attack from inside our city.

Young women and girls began to disappear. We heard a scream one morning. There was the sound of a car running away and a woman started to scream. We went out. The woman was screaming someone took her daughter 13 years. Just one shoe was on street. She had gone to get water. It was two weeks before I left. No one has seen the child in two weeks. I know her mother. More young women and girls have been taken, where to we don't know but we women know why. They are all young and pretty.

My husband said I have to leave. I do not want to go from him. I have our child to think of. He went to his mother in a not far village. She is very old and sick. She can not leave. The village has been bombed, many small houses are gone, bombed and burned. My husband will send me and our child away and go to his mother. He told me to put some things for the child in a bag I can carry over my shoulder and be ready.

The next day my husband came to flat and told me I was leaving, the gather the child and come with him. We walked a kilometer and a very old and rusty car (small van) was waiting for us. The big door on the side would not close, it was held on with wires. My husband paid the driver and gave me the few money he had left. The driver does not look like a good man. My husband told him that if anything happens to me and our child he will kill the driver. My husband kissed us and we left.

The driver did not say much and the old car was very noisy. It was getting cold in the late evening and it began to rain and stopped. A tire broke and the driver had an hour to fix it. We started again and went for another hour to a house in another district. A woman and two children came to our car. We started again. The driver did not go on good roads he went on bad roads. He knows where to go, I think he is a smuggler probably cigarettes.

We went for hours on the roads, out of city all the roads he went were dirt and muddy. It started to rain again and it was very cold. We were all wet with the open door. Driver began to go slow. He stopped and looked at a map. I asked what he was doing. He said he did not know where he was. In the dark I could see a small village sign 10 m away. I got out and looked at the sign. It was old but I could read it. I got in the car and took driver's map. I could see a spot marked on the map and when I found the village I knew he was lost and not where we needed to be. I told him mat and told the woman to get out with her children and come with me. I took the map. The driver demanded more money. I told him mat he had never heard. We started to walk. The rain stopped. After we walked around the village, I did not want to go in village, I stopped and we talked for a minute while I looked at map. I thought we had 6 kilometers to walk to small river. If we follow the river it will take us to the border. I could see on the map that two bridges cross the border. We started to walk again, I carried my child, child is too young to walk such a distance. The woman and I had on low boots, her children had trainers (sneakers). Her young child began to get tired so she and her older child carried the young one.

We found the river. I looked at map again and I see we are 2 kilometers from a bridge. We turned and follow the river. We came to a road and walked down the side of the road. There was a few cars going in both directions. No one stopped to help us. Soon I saw the border, I could see the Ukraine flag. I loved Ukraine. I was born in Ukraine. After what Ukraine did to my city, my friends, after Ukraine killed so many of us for no reason, I hate Ukraine. I hate that flag. I could see the Russian flag on the other side of bridge. I told the other woman to follow me to border. Let me talk to border guard.

There was 3 guards on the walk place, the others were searching cars on road. One guard saw us and started to laugh. He said to his friends we were moskali running away. I told him no, we were going for holiday and our car broke. He asked my passport. He looked at propeeska and got angry. I shouted to the woman and children to run across the bridge. The guard tried to hold my arm. I kicked him hard between legs. I ran after the others with my child in my arms. We are in Russia.

A sarjant and two soldiers took us to some women who took us to a tent. They gave us blankets and tea. We were all wet and mud from the rain. The women dried us as best they could. One put more wood in the stove. The floor of the tent was wood. There were soldiers beds in the tent, the kind that fold. The women asked us for our shoes and told us they would take the shoes to the cook tent to dry them. My child was sleeping, child was exhausted.

An officer and a sarjant came to tent. The officer asked us where we were going. I told him I did not know, that our driver got lost and we walked to the border. He asked for my documents. I told him they were in Ukraine, the guard had them. He asked if I killed the guard. I told him what I did. He laughed. He said the guard was down for a long time. I showed him the map. He showed it to sarjant. Sarjant said 'I will radio them. They are looking for this group.' The officer, Kapitan, turned to me. "Welcome to Russia. You are safe."

I could not help it. All the fear and worry months was gone. I began to weep. The other woman came to me. She put her arms around me. She wept. We went to the tent door. Stepped out to the wood there. Our feet were bare. The rain was stopped, the moon was coming. It was cold. I could see the flag of Russia in the light. When my husband comes to me after war we will make some new life in Russia.

After time a big white car (van) came for us. Four got out. Two were women. Two spoke to Kapitan and Sarjant. One woman spoke to us. The men helped us carry our children to the car. The car was warm. The car moved. I slept.

I woke we are on a high hill. I could see a city. I knew where we were going.


The situation in the cauldrons of Kramtorsk and Slavyansk is deteriorating by the hour. The reports of chlorine gas being used starting yesterday are confirmed. The nazis will do the same with gas they did with bombardments. First one single mortar shell, then 5, then 50 as the world ignored the shooting at civilian targets. Missiles. First one, then 5, then salvos. Gas. Yesterday a single attack using 'non lethal' amount on a block post. Today more. What of tomorrow?

We are working hard on getting more women and children out. We have two who should be here shortly. More will come later this week. We/they waited too long. It is difficult now to get them out of some areas, impossible for some areas.

The silence from The West is deafening.

How far can Russians retreats? (In memory of Anatolii Klian)

The murder of Anatolii Klian

I just watched a sickening and immensely sad report on Russian TV about the death of the Anatolii Klian, a 68 old cameraman for Channel One: you can see this report here and you can also read the RT article about his death, including videos, here. Of course, this is only one death of one man, whereas the tragedy which is taking place before our eyes affects in one way or another millions of people. The problem with figures like "millions" is that they tend to conceal the tragedy of the individual suffering of each one of these "millions" of human being that we heard about. So today I want to dedicate this post to just this one person who was murdered only because he was living and working according to his conscience and whose life was snuffed-out by thugs who richly deserve to be called "Nazis" but who are presented to us as "Europeans" who have made the "civilizational choice" to abandon the realm of the Asian brutes living in the East and who now returned to their common home known has "civilized Europe".

Со святыми упокой, Анатолий, и вечная память!


The current situation: a mixed bag

The news out of Novorussia is a mixed bag of reasons to hope and reasons to despair. The so-called "peace initiative" of Poroshenko is either an obscene mis-characterization or, at best, a not so funny joke: the Ukies are still shelling and sniping at civilians every day, and in Kiev a mass rally took place not to demand a real ceasefire, oh no, but to demand a full scale resumption of hostilities! As for the AngloZionists, not in the least impressed by Putin's various attempts at appeasing their paranoid russophobia, they are again threatening Russia with more sanctions. On the other hand, there are plenty of signs that the Novorussian side is getting stronger with each passing day: entire units are switching sides without a single shot fired, Novorussian special forces have apparently succeeded in taking control of some very advanced air-defense missiles near Donetsk (though it is unclear to me if these systems are still operational or not), somebody has apparently "lost" at least three howitzers on the road (which were immediately taken over by the NDF) and the number of volunteer fighters ready to defend the Donbass is steadily growing each day. Where this is all going is too early to call: the Ukies have now used chemical munitions and there are consistent reports of huge columns of Ukie military convoys entering the Donbass. Though I personally hope that the Ukies have by now maxed out their war effort, this is far from being certain and there remains the very real possibility of Poroshenko's "Plan B" happening next: the plan apparently, consists of a 3-pronged attack on the Donbass: from the northwest (Kharkov), the west (Dnepropetrovsk) and the south (Mariupol). Combined with an move to block the border in the east, such a "Plan B" would put all of Novorussia at a huge risk.

I confess to suffering from Analytical Multiple Personality Disorder

As you know, I suffer from AMPD - "analytical multiple personality disorder": one one hand I simply cannot wait any longer for a Russian military intervention to finally stop the UkroNazi onslaught on Novorussia, while on the other hand I am fully aware that this would be a mistake. My gut tell me "crush these bastards!" while my brain tells me "don't take the bait!".

Yesterday evening, after listening to the latest news, I was walking around with my now usual knot in my stomach: a dozen of different "what ifs" were tormenting me from inside: what if Putin has been intimidated or bought off? What if he does not have a plan and what if the current Russian stance is only a reflection of a frightening and confused Russian leadership? Or what if Putin and his advisers have cynically decided to trade Novorussia for Crimea or, even worse, Novorussia for lucrative contracts?

Judging by some of the comments posted here, there are many of you who apparently believe that I am a Putin-groupie and that I never have doubts about him. If only you knew how wrong you are! I have doubts, and I even have fears, but I try not to let them overwhelm me because I don't believe that these are helpful analytical tools. But to those of you who say that Putin is clueless or has sold out I will reply this: you have no more evidence of that than I have evidence of the contrary, and we will not know until this situation fully plays itself out.

So we are all stuck in the anguish of having to wait. To wait while innocent people are getting murdered, while the EU plutocracy is giving standing ovations to a clearly Nazi regime in Kiev and while Uncle Sam is making more threats against Russia every day. To anybody who truly and sincerely cares for the people of Novorussia is type of waiting is nothing short of a psychological torture. I can tell you that my last thought when I go to sleep and my very first thought when I wake up is:

How far can the Russians retreat?

Yesterday I suddenly realized that this is not the first time that this question is dividing the Russian society. During the European invasion of Russia under Napoleon (of the almost 700'000 soldiers which invaded Russia in 1812 only about half were French: the rest were from almost all the other European nations, mostly Germans and Poles) the very same issue divided Russian society. At the time both Field Marshal Barclay de Tolly and later Field Marshal Mihail Kutuzov were fiercely criticized for their policy of retreating before Napoleon's armies. Unlike what happened during WWII where the Soviet retreat was not planned but forced by a stunningly successful German attack, the Russian retreat in the War of 1812 was completely deliberate and, I would argue, logical. Things got so ugly that Barclay de Tolly (who was an ethnic Scotsman) was accused of being a coward and a secret agent for Napoleon. When the "ethnically correct" Russian Kutuzov (who had served with distinction under the most famous Russian general of all times, Alexander Suvorov, and whose patriotism and courage could not be put in doubt) was appointed to replace Barclay de Tolly, he decided to follow exactly the same strategy. In fact, Kutuzov ordered the Russian army to retreat as far as the small town of Borodino, roughly 120km west Moscow, before engaging the armies of Napoleon in a huge battle. The outcome of the battle was arguably a mutual bloodbath and a draw (I would call it a tactical victory for the French and an operational-strategic victory for the Russians), Kutuzov further pulled back his forces and gave up Moscow without firing a single shot! Pushed by his hubris and ego, Napoleon took the bait and entered Moscow waiting for the Russian side to hand him the keys of the city. The Russians never showed up and, after waiting (and using the Kremlin's churches as stables for his horses!), the "Grande Armée" began a hideous retreat. From the 690,000 men that comprised the initial invasion force, only 93,000 survived (barely, at the Berezina the European army was almost surrounded!) By March of 1814 the Russian army was camping in Paris and Talleyrant had to give the keys of Paris to the Russian Czar Alexander I.

There was more to this Russian strategy of retreat than just the desire to literally "trade space for lives" or the desire to place more stress on the enemy's supply lines. The Russians had painfully learned this strategy from the Mongols who often retreated before the advancing Russian forces before destroying them (typically by setting the steppe on fire and by a envelopment maneuver). In warfare, as in chess, timing is an absolutely crucial factor which cannot be ignored.

But coming back to Barclay the Tolly and Kutuzov, can we now even begin to imagine the kind of anguish they must have faced? Being called traitors, foreign agents, cowards by the entire court (safely removed from any personal risk in Saint Petersburg) and probably by most of Russian society? I don't think that anybody can imagine the kind of pressure to change strategy Alexander I, Barclay the Tolly and Kutuzov must have faced, especially after the surrender of Moscow. And yet, time has fully vindicated them and their superb strategic instincts. Though this is impossible to prove, the consensus if military historians us that had the Russian army given Napoleon his first real battle somewhere West of Smolensk it would have been smashed and ended up retreating just the same, but this time in complete chaos and very few survivors.

So the correct answer to the question above is: Russia can retreat as far as needed to win.

Objection: Putin is no Alexander I

Agreed. Neither are Poroshenko or Obama Napoleon, not by a long shot. But then neither is the current war on Russia (because that is exactly what it taking place) a 19th century kind of war. It is a 21st century war, WWIV (if WWIII was the so-called "Cold War").

If the Russians have learned from their multiple military defeats at the hands of the Mongols, then the West Europeans have learned from their multiple military defeats at the hands of the Russians.

Over and over again have western invaders attacked Russia and over and over again they have failed to prevail, at least in a military sense. But these western military defeats overshadow an equally long list successful cultural and religious interventions.

First, the Papacy was successful in converting (by force and corruption) Lithuanians and West-Russians (the future Ukrainians). Then, for a while, the Mongol occupation of Russia provided a kind of painful but effective shield against western crusaders, but at the end of the Mongol occupation, and following the brilliant reign of Ivan III (one of the best Russian rulers ever), then Vasilii III and Ivan IV (aka "The Terrible") the Russian state rapidly degenerated into a period of chaos called the Troubled Times. Here again, the West attempted to invade Russia and the Poles even place one of their agents, the so-called False Dimitri, on the throne of Russia while, in a typical act of Latin hatred for the Orthodox Church, beating starving to death the Russian Patriarch Saint Germogenes (some things never change). Eventually, the Poles and their Jesuit masters were kicked out and eventually a Zemskii Sobor the young son of the metropolitan Philaret, Michael Romanov, as Czar of Russia. While externally peace had returned to Russia, internally powerful pro-western forces were gradually becoming stronger, especially in the Russian elites. Their time came when Peter I (aka "The Great") came to power in 1682. Though I don't want to turn this into a detailed historical analysis, I would argue that the Russian people and culture have essentially been more or less successfully suppressed from Peter I to Vladimir Putin. While some of Russia's rulers tried hard to restore and uphold the Russian culture and Orthodox Christianity (especially Alexander III and Saint Nicholas II), the Russian aristocracy - which was largely composed of Free-Masons - systematically viciously opposed such efforts. The mechanism we see today in Russia - the ruler supported by the people struggles against the elites supported by the West - is nothing new, it has been going on for several centuries.

Furthermore, what is the very existence of a so-called "Ukraine" (without the "the" article placed before it) if not a huge strategic success of the West European elites? Think of it - in 1812 there was no "Ukrainian collaborators welcoming the French even though the latter had promised to "free" the Russians peasants. Just one century later not only did the many Ukrainians welcome the Germans will flowers (which, considering what the Soviet Commissars had done to them, I fully understand), but many sincerely considered themselves as a distinct ethnicity with nothing positive in common with the Russian people. How is that not a remarkable success of western elites?

As for the Soviet period, I personally consider that all the Soviet rulers from Lenin to Gorbachev were russophobes who, each in their own way, at best, had little in common with the Russian culture and people (Gorbachev), at worst, had a genocidal hatred for the Russian people (Lenin and Trotsky). Still, during the Second World War and after, the Russian culture and national awareness slowly began to re-emerge, even during the rule of such degenerate scumbags like Khrushchev or Eltsin. As I have written in the past, I believe that Vladimir Putin came to power pushed by such "national" forces inside the KGB, albeit with a oligarchy-backed Medvedev to keep him in check. The point of all this is to remind everybody of an crucial and overlooked fact: the West has had a more or less firm grip on the "neck of Russian authorities" since at least from 1682 to 2000 - three hundred and eighteen years! As for Putin, he was formally appointed in 1999 and elected in 2000, but his period of more or less full control of Russia only began in 2012, only two years ago (I have written about this especially here but also here and here) and in these two years his systematic opposition to the AngloZionist Empire has earned him the passionate hatred of the western plutocracy which he apparently "disappointed". Those who so casually accuse Putin of being a coward, a NWO agent, of selling out or of being outmaneuvered should at the very least familiarize themselves with the basic elements of Russian history and compare what Putin did in two years to what has been taking place for the past 300 centuries.

Still, I have to agree that even though Putin's record is nothing short of stellar, at least so far, the the big unanswered question remains:

What will Putin now do next?

My honest reply is simple: I don't know. I really don't know. I have already candidly shared my worst fears with you and I have also repeated many times that I don't see sufficient reasons to doubt that Putin will eventually take action when he decides that the right moment has come. Does that mean that I trust him? No. But it does mean that I don't have cause to lose hope in him either.

For those who constantly berate Putin for not doing enough (or even not doing anything), I would say that there is also no reasons to assume that the junta in Kiev has the means to crush the Novorussian resistance. If so, then let me immediately add this: it would be far preferable for Novorussia, Russia and even Europe if Novorussia succeeded in fighting off the Nazi death squads without overt Russian help than with. As for an overt Russian military intervention, this would objectively be an extremely undesirable outcome for everybody except Uncle Sam and his puppets at the EU. It might come to that, I often suspect it probably will, but this would be a forced outcome, one whose initiation would already constitute a victory for the AngloZionists regardless of the actual outcome of the Russian military operation (which no halfway informed person could possibly doubt).

In the June 24th SITREP I wrote:
Again, we have a situation in which Poroshenko or, should I say, Poroshenko's puppeteers in Washington, are absolutely determined to achieve either one of the following goals:
1) To extend Banderastan all the way to the Russian border
2) To force Russia to openly intervene militarily in the Donbass

This is a winning strategy because Kiev has the means to achieve at least one of these goals and Putin does not have a third option. The Kremlin's preferred solution - to have Novorossia successfully resist the Ukie aggression - does not seem to be achievable, at least not if the Kremlin does not take dramatic action to change the dynamic on the ground.
This begs the question of how much is "dramatic"? I would argue that any action which allows Novorussia to successfully resist the Ukie aggression is, by that definition, a "dramatic enough" action. What would this action be composed of?

1) Covert military and technical aid to the Novorussian resistance.
2) Political denunciation of the junta's atrocities and provocations.
3) A constant attempt at putting a political and financial wedge between the EU and the US.
4) A constant preparation of the Russian public opinion for a possible use of the Russian armed forces to "save Novorussia".
5) A uninterrupted struggle to replace as many "Atlantic Integrationists" with as many "Eurasian Sovereignists" (for a definition, see the links above) in key positions in the Kremlin.

As of now, I have all the reasons to believe that this is exactly what is taking place. I don't know about tomorrow, much less so about what will happen in a week, month or year. But as of now - this is what I see and this is why I say that as of now it is too early to accuse Putin of anything else than prudence and sound planning.

Now I will readily admit that this strategy, while possibly "dramatic enough" in purely rational terms, is not dramatic enough for my heart. I have visions of Right Sector death squads suddenly coming face-to-face with Polite Armed Men in Green, visions of a pair MiG-31 shutting down the entire airspace over Novorossia while Russian Su-34 are bombing the shit (pardon my French) out of the Ukie artillery positions, I have visions of a group of Vympel operators yanking Liashko or Kolomoiski out of bed and taking them to Kolyma via Moscow, just has I have visions of the French people overthrowing the Zionist plutocracy in power and replacing it by a truly French committee national salvation. I even have visions of true American people finally giving the boot to the truly satanic 1%ers who are occupying the US and visions of the US becoming a "normal" country. And that is all well and dandy for the "nobody blogger" which I am, but that is not a luxury that a head of state like Putin can afford.

In conclusion I will say that nobody will be more ashamed and mortified than me if it turns out that Putin's Russia will abandon her people in Novorussia to the US/EU backed Nazi invaders and their death squads. If that happens, there will be no need to gloat and tell me "we told you so" because if you tell me so now, it would only be for all the wrong reasons. Yes, such a betrayal is possible, but no, emphatically no, there is no basis as of now to conclude that such a betrayal has already happened or is in the making.

Every morning I wake up with the fear that "it" might have happened mixed with the hope that the much awaited Russian "push back" has finally begun. So far, neither has happened and, yes, Russia is retreating. And only God knows for how long or how far.

The Saker

30th June IRAQ SITREP by Mindriedo

29th June: On the first of Ramadan, Daash has declared itself and the territory it holds an Islamic State. It has changed its name to Daulat Islamia or Islamic government/state or its acronym DI. The new caliph and “successor” of Muhammad (sawa) and the “commander of the faithful (Amerul Momineen)” of Daulat Islamia is Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. DI has asked all fighters within its borders to pay allegiance to their caliph.

NB: The title Ameerul Momineen (Commander of the faithful) is one that Sunnis have used for nearly every single Caliph or Sultan. The Shias only refer to Ali Ibn Abi Talib (as) by this title, not even the other Imams are called by this title.
Other notables who have called themselves Amerul Momineen in recent times:
The King of Morocco
Mullah Umar of the Taliban
Nawaz Sharif tried to add it to his title but failed.
Reportedly, Zia ul haq of Pakistan

30th June: Other Islamist groups in Iraq and in the region, along with some Salafist clerics, have reacted with disappointment at DI’s declaration of a DI, Stating that such a state and the allegiance sought may undermine the gains made by Islamists everywhere.
30th June: Transcript of a video message by DI, A DI fighter pointing to the now defunct border: “The Safavi army used to stand here. But there is no border. This is the so called check point, the soldiers of Maliki used to stand…” he later steps on a army battalion board, “the only battalion here is of Allah. Abi Bakr al Baghdadi used to say that he is the breaker of borders. We will inshallah break the borders of Iraq, Lebanon, Jordan. There will be only one flag of DI. All the flags of kufr will be no more. We are one country all muslims, and we have one imam.”
30th June: A very important link by David Hungerford in the comments to the previous SITREP:
The article shows a broad based resentment of the Government in Baghdad and the firm resolve of Iraqi Sunni society to get rid of the “sectarian puppet corrupted government” of Nouri Al Maliki.
The rebels against the government consist of Iraqi Sunni Arab tribes, ex army officers, Ex Ba’athist and Islamic Jihadist. The government refers to all its enemies as Daash. The Kurdish authorities and press have a similar tendency of calling the Sunni revolution as Daash.
30th June: The leader of the largest Sunni tribe in Iraq, Ali Hatem Suleimani, has stated that his tribe will continue to back the Islamists as long as Maliki is in power.
30th The government has played down the importance of the eastern towns of Rawa, Ahna, and al-Qaem. It is stating that nothing of strategic importance is located there.
30th June: Iran is pushing as priority gas supply to Iraq to feed Iraq’s four gas power plants.
30th June: CNN reports that most of the Shia volunteers have been given between 7-10 days of training, but are full of conviction, before being sent to fight DI.
30th June: A woman claiming to be a resident of Tikrit sends a video message to CNN: “June 28, 2014. Thank God, Tikrit is safe and still in the hand of tribesmen and not troops of 'al-Haliki” (al-Haliki is a derogatory reference to Maliki, it refers to his death)
30th June: Rear Adm. John Kirby of the Pentagon stated that the American jets were not slow in coming and that the first two jets still to be delivered would have made little impact on the ground. Russian officials must have a higher regard for the SU-25 than the Americans have of their F-16.
30th June: His Holiness the Pope, Francis I, has asked the authorities in Baghdad to form a national unity government and end the vilence in the country. He has expressed solidarity with the refugee Christian population of Iraq.
30th June: The king of Saudi Arabia, King Abdullah has sacked the deputy defense minister Prince Khaled bin Bandar bin Abdul-Aziz on the recommendation of the Defense Minister Prince Salman.
30th June: An Iranian military commander Hassan Firouzabadi has expressed alarm at the death sentence handed to Shia Saudi cleric Ayatollah Nimr al-Nimr. He has expressed his hope that the government of Saudi Arabia (land of turbulent Princes, aging monarchs and caged princesses) will overrule this unjust sentence.
30th June: Shimon Peres has expressed hope that the presence of Daash will help unite Arabs and Israelis to a bigger threat.
30th June: In other news from the promised/cursed land, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has called for the creation of an independent Kurdish state.
30th June: This article by the New York Times claims that the State Department investigator of the Blackwater atrocities in Iraq has had his work hampered by death threats.
30th June: Obama has pointed out the threat returning European Jihadist fighters pose to the National Security of the USA.
What all schoolchildren learn, Those to whom evil is done Do evil in return.
30th June: The Iraqi Governments tally for the day:
The police have made five arrests in Basra
An IED has exploded in al-Ghazaliya suburb, west Baghdad killing one and injuring seven
Government kills three militants in Injana, north of Diyala, in air strikes
The Baghdad operational Command claims to have stopped an infiltration attempt by DI
Three civilians are killed in north east of Baqouba by mortar fire

Strelkov, Berezin & Militia Briefings, June 29-30, 2014

Combined for June 29-30, 2014

Translated from Russian by Gleb Bazov

#1 – Morning Briefing from the Militia, June 29, 2014, 8:35
Original: Strelkov Info

The ceasefire is progressing at full strength – at night the Ukie forces shelled Slavyansk and Semyonovka. In response, they got a massive shelling of Karachun and the Kramatorsk airfield (including with tanks) – [following which] they quickly calmed down.

10:54 – Once again, Ukies started to shell Slavyansk. In response, [our] Nona started working, shelling the ill-fated checkpoint of the Nazi bastards near the Fish Farm ([according to enemy classification,] CP No. 1, which we already took once).

#2 – Information from Slavyansk Resident, @mara_beyka, June 29, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

11:17 – Kramatorsk was again under fire. The city lived peacefully until the hour that those on Karachun decided to blow the [water] filtration station to bits. How do you explain this? Again we have to live with explosions.

12:38 – Once again, a severe shelling of my neighbourhood. The “Lesnoy” market is burning. I have no strength [anymore].

#3 – Briefing from Igor Strelkov, June 29, 2014, 12:00

Around half past nine, Ukies shelled the city with howitzers. Apartment buildings in the Artyom settlement and in the area of the railway terminal suffered direct hits. Also hit was the [local] market. There are victims among the civilian population.

#4 – Information from the Militia, June 29, 2014, 12:00
Original: Strelkov Info

On June 29, at noon, a solemn consecration ceremony of the banner of the 1st Volunteer Battalion of Slavyansk took place in the Svyato-Voskresenskiy temple in the city of Slavyansk.

Photographs of the Consecration Ceremony

#5 – Reports from Eyewitness, June 29, 2014, 12:45
Original: Strelkov Info

At about 13:00, Ukie forces are continuing to shell Slavyansk. Once again, homes have been destroyed, there are victims among the civilian population. That’s the kind of ceasefire we have.

A shell hit the 9th floor of a building on Olimpiyskaya street. Vera Kostenko, 53 years old, died. Her daughter and [granddaughter] hid in the bathroom and survived.

Shells continued to explode at the [local] market, the only place where people could still find food to survive.

@mara_beyka: “A woman’s head was ripped off [by an explosion] in the area of the “Lesnoy” market, in her own apartment. My hands are shaking.”

#6 – Reports from Local Residents, June 29, 2014, 13:07
Original: Strelkov Info

While in Kiev they rally for continuation of the ATO [Anti-terrorist Operation], in Slavyansk we are counting corpses. The result of the Ukie army’s shelling of Slavyansk: 2 women and 1 man died; there are many wounded.

#7 – Briefing from Igor Strelkov, June 29, 2014, 13:50
Original: Strelkov Info

At approximately 10:00 in the morning, the enemy conducted howitzer strikes in the area of Artyom, the railway terminal and the Central Market. As a result, 2 civilians died and several were wounded.

At 13:00, the enemy is conducting mortar strikes against the Vostochniy settlement, Semyonovka and the outskirts of Seleznyovka. Multiple instances of destruction reported.

#8 – Briefing from Igor Strelkov, June 29, 2014, 14:10

Ukies are conducting a full-scale war. The shelling of the Vostochniy settlement and of Semyonovka with mortars and howitzers continues.

Three “Acacias” have been delivered to [a Ukrainian] stronghold at Kombikormoviy … This is right next to the city. It means that we should be expecting semi-direct strikes.

There are reports from Rovnenkov (on the border with Russia): using overwhelming forces, Ukies are closing the last “window” on the Russian border. An entire regiment, 260 various armoured vehicles are involved … That’s the kind of “ceasefire” we have …

#9 – Briefing from the Militia, June 29, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

The night became relatively calm as it turned to morning. Once again, there were drones in the area of military activity. The enemy is relocating its detachments. We expect that fresh detachments of the Nazi bastards from Western provinces will arrive in Krasniy Liman on July 2nd.

10:30 (MSK) – intense howitzer and mortar shelling started from Karachun, directed against the Artyom district, near the railway terminal. Black clouds of smoke seen rising over Artyom and the “Lesnoy” market and in the vicinity. The Militia returned fire at Karachun, an artillery duel is ongoing.

12:20 (MSK) – As a result of the Ukie army’s artillery shelling of Slavyansk that lasted over an hour, a number of residential buildings were damaged: two buildings destroyed at 12 Novoslavyanskiy lane, near the “Express” store, in the Sobachevka district; people are still trapped beneath the rubble. We require help. Also, the market was hit – there are dead and wounded there.

The Artyom district and the area of the railway terminal suffered severe damage; fires and destruction in the residential neighbourhoods reported.

#10 – Briefing from the Militia, June 29, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

Video of a Building Subjected to Artillery Shelling in Slavyansk

Slavyansk. The building down Olimpiyskaya street following artillery shelling from Karachun by the Ukrainian army. People died here. There are many wounded.

#11 – Revelations by a Former Ukrainian Paratrooper, June 29, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

Video of the Statements Made by a Former Ukrainian Paratrooper

A former serviceman of the 25th Dnepropetrovsk paratrooper brigade of the Ukrainian armed forces abandoned his battle position near Kramatorsk, where he was born and grew up, and left for Russia. He did not want to shoot his own countrymen.

“My father told me that he was going to join the Militia, and he is a man of his word. I did not want to go fight against him. And against my countrymen. That is how it happened that I resigned and left” – Yaroslav told us.

He served in the same paratrooper brigade that had six APC crews refuse to follow the orders of the Kiev government to attack the city and go over to the side of the Slavyansk Militia in April. At that time, Yaroslav was at a checkpoint near his native Kramatorsk. He says that he fellow soldiers were preparing for a battle, but did not understand whom they would be fighting: “They had no idea, really. All because we were told that [we would be fighting] terrorists and separatists, but, because I am myself from Karamatorsk, I have a pretty good idea what kind of “terrorists” they are. Listening to the officer, you’d think that my grandma is a terrorist.”

Yaroslav’s story is shocking. He heard horrific things first hand – from his fellow soldiers that fought street battles in Kramatorsk. “When they took over a district of Kramatorsk, they checked every house – to see whether there were weapons or whether [the residents] had contact with the Militia. And, if there was any link [to the Militia], they would shoot everyone – women, children, men. They executed entire families!”

The first telephone calls from Russia he placed to his relative and friends. Kramatorsk continued to fight, even when mourning. “A former classmate of mine attended two funerals. A young woman died – she simply went out on the balcony to smoke, and a man, a passerby – he had no weapon, nothing!” – told us the former paratrooper.

Yaroslav says that the Ukrainian army is finishing its last reserves. They have started on the Ukrainian rations, but even those are in short supply. But what is most important, according to the former partrooper, is that the morale in the army is not ready for combat – the conscripted/mobilized Ukrainians simply do not want to fight.

Yaroslav is sure of himself, though. He already took the most important step = he did not allow a war that is ripping apart the country also make him shoot his own father.

#12 – Information from DPR Press Service, June 29, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

Members of the special detachment of the Donetsk People’s Republic’s army took control of the military garrison of [Ukrainian] missile defence forces, to wit, anti-aircraft regiment No. A-1402.

#13 – Militiaman’s Report on the Situation in Kramatorsk, June 29, 2014, 12:28
Original: Strelkov Info

In Kramatorsk, there is hunger due to nonpayment of pensions and wages. The biggest problem in Kramatorsk now is not the shelling, but hunger. And, to boot, people cannot leave the city. They hoped that payments of pensions and wages would be resumed, and stayed here. And now they stayed too long – they have nothing now. Buses are being organized, some have been evacuated, but people are afraid to travel without money. They have been promised they would be fed, but a man can’t believe [promises] blindly, and that’s why people have stayed here.

Only about 1% of what Kramatorsk needs is delivered by means of humanitarian aid. Half of the city’s population, or about 100 thousand people, remain in the city; they need food. And all we get is a ton [of foodstuffs] a day.

The Ukrainian army cut off all the humanitarian corridors three days ago, and if, before, vans with cereals would arrive from Russian, we have not received any in several days. Grandmothers come to us, they say that they have not eaten anything but cherries and mulberries in a week. People have not been paid for two months. It’s good that it’s summer now, not winter, or we would have another Leningrad on our hands. And in Slavyansk everything is worse, by an order of magnitude.

Last night there was a skirmish near the airfield, then, from one until two in the morning, the city was shelled from the Meloviye Mountains. We have no information regarding victims.

#14 – Latest Hourly Briefings from the Militia, June 29, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

14:10 (MSK) – Three civilians died in the course of the shelling of Slavyansk. A column of Ukie vehicles passed through Krasniy Liman down Pushkin street, heading toward the Central Regional Hospital. The column consisted of ten trucks with ammunition and one BTR-80 APC.

14:55 (MSK) – Artillery fire was opened against Malinovka from Karachun and Starobelyanka. In the area of the Belyanskiye Mountains thick black smoked could be observed. On the northern slope of Karachun there is also smoke; according to unconfirmed information an enemy artillery position was suppressed.

17:35 (MSK) – Fresh detachments of Right Sector and Nazi bastards arrived in Krasniy Liman, numbering no more than four units, to replace the old ones. They have been quartered at a high school.

#15 – Commentary from Igor Strelkov, June 29, 2014, 19:47
Original: Strelkov Info

Regarding the Ukie Army’s Receipt of New Armoured Vehicles

They’ll be taught [how to use them]. Never think your enemy is dumber than you are. Amreekans and their underlings react much faster to the situation, unfortunately, than many “strategists” prefer to think. Don’t forget, also, that, on the other side of this conflict, there are yesterday’s Russians fighting, even if now they are the Nazi homeless. In other words, these are potentially talented and warlike people, provided they have the necessary motivation. I will say more: dismissive attitude [toward the enemy] has already seriously harmed us and continues to harm us to this day. These notions created, at a certain stage, a “beatific confidence” that the Militia does not even need any assistance to overcome the adversary, that everything will somehow work out on its own.

As a result, we are sitting inside besieged Slavyansk, unable to break through the encirclement; the enemy is the doorstep to Lugansk and Donetsk, Mariupol has been been forsaken … And our prospects are from rainbow-bright.

#16 – Briefing from the Militia, June 29, 2014, 22:20
Original: Strelkov Info

Detonation of ammunition occurring at a military base in the Bosse district of Donetsk. The base is on fire. The location of the accident has been blocked [to traffic].

Video of Conscripts Departing from the Military Base

Video of Explosions at the Military Base

#17 – Information from Russia Today, June 29, 2014, 23:02
Original: Strelkov Info

Ammunition stores are exploding on the territory of a [Ukrainian] military base in Donetsk. Earlier, the base was abandoned by Ukrainian forces following a siege by the Militia.

According to an eyewitness: “Ammunitions started exploding immediately after [Ukrainian] servicemen left the base. It appears that the detonation was triggered remotely.”

#18 – Briefing from Igor Strelkov, June 29, 2014, 23:30

Ukies Have Subjected our Positions in Semyonovka to Chemical Weapons

Two of the militiamen are in critical condition (poisoning with phosphorus fumes) and have been sent to Donetsk. One of them is very critical.

Right now (it is half past ten [local time]) the shelling of Slavkurort continues. Howitzers of 240mm calibre have been used. There are several several centres of severe fires.

#19 – Commentary from Igor Strelkov, June 30, 2014, 1:13
Original: Strelkov Info

It’s not a matter of “switching on” brains, and you are not looking in the right place. What we should have done, long ago, was remove the people that were, for the last ten years, the authors of all our “victories” in CIS, and, in particular, in Ukraine. But they remain in the driver’s seat. The direction [of our policies] has changed 180 degrees, but the people are the same …

[Foreign mercenaries] – we have not caught any yet. Presumably, there are some among the dead. But we have not detained any. Because we are defendant, not attacking, we have very few POWs.

I read an interesting note today in the dear El-Murid’s LiveJournal blog. The note puts in doubt the use of 240mm mortars in the shelling of Slavyansk. Well, alright, I won’t argue: without direct observation, it is impossible to determine precisely what has been hitting us with such an impact that you lose your footing after only one explosion (and, as you can guess, we can’t look from above – we have no aviation, yet). Local residents’ descriptions of a system they saw [Ukies deliver] seems to fit [a 240mm mortar]. But what there is, in reality – alas, [hard to tell] … Perhaps it’s a 203mm [piece], perhaps something else …

#20 – Briefing from Fyodor Berezin, June 30, 2014, 01:19
Original: Strelkov Info

Ammunition depots are exploding in Donetsk, in the Bosse settlement.

For an hour and a half I observed, from different angles, the detonation of the Ministry of Internal Affairs depots. In Soviet times, it used to be a military-political academy. Across the road, there is a military lyceum. Now everything is exploding.

Everyone around – I am talking about the militiamen of the “Oplot” unit – are worried about the people. But also about the dogs. Next to it, separated by a fence, is a kennel. The poor canines probably have lost their minds because of the noise of explosions.

The cause of what is happening is the rigging of the depots. It is clear that a Ministry of Internal Affairs regiment was not supposed to have the quantity of explosives that is now exploding. Obviously, they delivered them over time, concentrating them in one place, under guard. Now, with the takeover by the Militia imminent, they detonated the charges.

As I was watching the explosions, I remembered my [book,] “The Ukrainian Front.” It has a plotline about this military base. Let’s hope I am no prohphet.

In Slavyansk, the Junta is using chemical weapons. Two militiamen were heavily poisoned after a shell exploded. They were sent to Donetsk. Tomorrow I will ask the medics about the nature of the poisoning.

#21 – Urgent Statement by DPR Press-Service, June 30, 2014, 02:23
Original: Strelkov Info

A vehicle used by LifeNews journalists was fired at with a grenade launcher near a military base. The journalists were not in the vehicle at the time and were not harmed. As a consequence of shooting at journalists and soldiers’ mothers near a military base, there is one dead and two wounded. Video operator of “Channel One,” Anatoliy Glyan, died of a wound to his stomach after being shot at by the Ukrainian military.

Video Record of Last Moments of Anatoliy Glyan's Life

Note: Anatoliy Glyan, a video operator with Russian “Channel One,” came in a bus with soldier’s mothers who went to secure the release of their sons from a Ukrainian military base. After the negotiations were concluded, Anatoliy remained outside smoking when, all of a sudden, the shooting started. Anatoliy received a gunshot wound to his stomach. He died in the hospital, remaining conscious throughout. His last question was about the fate of his camera. The driver of the vehicle hired by LifeNews journalists was also killed.

#22 – Information from Local Residents, June 29, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

Video of Shelling by Ukrainian Army on June 29, 2014

On June 29, Ukrainian forces once again shelled the Alexandro-Nevskiy Cathedral. Details of the event were provided by the dean of the Cathedral, Father Nikolay Fomenko:

“The shelling started at 10:00 in the morning, during the liturgy. One if the shells hit a bread kiosk “Palyanitsa,” located several meters from the temple. It was blown to bits, everything inside burned up. The store attendant managed to survive because she ran after she heard the first volley.

At that time, almost a thousand people were located on the territory of the Cathedral. Inside the temple there were many believers who came for the service. Oustide, in the yard, gathered those who were waiting for humanitarian aid to be distributed. After the shelling started, everyone rushed inside the temple. The Catherdral was filled with people to overflowing. People stood on their knees, praying to God with tears in their eyes. Several stained glass panels fell from the cupola section and shattered. The volleys lasted for half an hour. Also hit were the district of Artyom and the Central Market.

After the shelling stopped, we heard [the Militia] return fire from the city. They fired several volleys. But the shelling by [Ukrainian military] was directed against us [in the Cathedral].

No one on the territory of the Cathedral was harmed; the temple is also in one piece. People were saved from the shards of the exploding store by the fact that they hid in the temple. But in the Artyom district people died, civilians; two of them were buried today – Father Tikhon read the burial service. Our morgue does not work, as we have no electricity in the city, and people are force to bury those close to them right away because of the warm weather. One of the women buried had her head virtually torn off. This is terrifying …

We did not stop the service when the shelling started. The choir sang with tears in their eyes. People stood on their knees and prayed, also crying. And right when the service ended, the shelling also stopped.

After that we went out and started distributing humanitarian aid. I asked people not to stand outside for long, because I noticed that large crowds attract artillery fire. Look, they shoot at places where they are many people; today it was our temple, the Central Market, and in the Artyom district there is also the “Lesnoy” market – and that’s exactly where the shells hit today. And they also hit a nine-storey residence – people died, including, I think, a child.

It is difficult to understand, how can people from the same country behave like that [toward us]. Even fascists did not shoot their own. And here … How do they hope to justify this to God? I can’t even start to imagine.”

#23 – Message from Militiaman Alexander Zhuchkovskiy, June 30, 2013, 01:40
Original: Strelkov Info

Not long ago, Dmitry Steshin wrote about Slavyansk: “This is my second motherland.” I can only imagine the longing Steshin feels for his motherland from Moscow, where he was categorically recalled to by the editorial office.

It’s easier for me – I am much closer, and the only reason for my absence [from Slavyansk] was a short-term assignment (necessitated by the material needs of the Militia). So my own longing for my motherland will be brief.

It has been twice in one month now that I have travelled outside Slavyansk, and every time I wait, longingly and impatiently, to return home.

Do I miss my native St. Petersburg? For the first time in my life, I do not. My fate has bound me to Slavyansk forever. It may be that there will never again be a place in my life that I would want to return to, again and again, like I want to return to Slavyansk.

There is a worn out phrase, which came to us, I think, either from American cinema or political jargon: “the world will never be the same again.”

In 2008, there was, for example, a popular expression: “the world after Tskhinvali.” These days, the events in Tskhinvali serve only as a silent reproach of the failure to intervene in Novorossiya …

After Slavyansk we will never be the same again. Russians will never be the same. Russia will never be the same.

We will remain in Slavyansk forever, dead or alive. Victorious or defeated. With Novorossiya or without.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

29th June IRAQ SITREP by Mindfriedo

29th June: Qassem Atta’s claims for today:
142 terrorists killed, 51 vehicles destroyed (no army in the world must be prouder of destroying its own looted equipment), 102 sorties undertaken.
29th June: Majeed Aqa Babaei, from the Iranian Interior Ministry claims that Daash will not dare attack the Iranian border for fear of retaliation. (He is trying to reason with mad men)
29th June: The Iraqi authorities are denying claims made in the local press that Iraqi politicians have stashed 1000 billion USD abroad. Enough to help Obama with Quantitative Easing.
29th June: Clashes are ongoing between Security Forces and Daash in the South of Tikrit. The fighting is in the village of al-Rwashid adjacent to Balad district. This fighting is of significance since a shrine, an Imamzadeh (son of an Imam, Imam Hadi (as)) is located in Balad and is a target for Daash. The initial assault of the security forces on Tikrit met with resistance. The security forces had to pull back initially.
29th June: Daash fighters identify and destroy three houses south of Tikrit that belonged to police officers. The family of one of the officers has been abducted by Daash. May God protect them.
29th June: Five Sukhoi Su-25 ground attack aircraft have arrived and have been inducted by the Iraqi Airforce. The Russians had initially mentioned SU 30 Multi role fighters but the Iraqis are insisting that they are Su25s that Iraq has experience operating.
29th June: Turkoman militia are trying to break Daash’s hold on the Shia village of Bashir outside of Kirkuk. Heavy fighting has left unverified number of Shia Turkoman dead and nine injured.
29th June: Following the counter offensive launched by the Iraqi government, the Kurdish authorities have restricted entry along its borders. People with proper identification documents are being allowed in. A piece of paper can get you across the Peshmergas or get you killed by Daash.
29th June: Iraqi authorities claim that the US security personnel are helping them coordinate their assault on Tikrit.
29th June: The Iraqi National Coalition (the largest block in the parliament) has put forth the following names for president:
Nouri al-Maliki (Incumbent)
Ibrahim Al Jafari (Former Prime Minister)
Adel Abdul Mahdi (Former Vice President)
Falah al Fayad (current security advisor)
Ahmad Al Chalabi (former advisor to the Americans supposed turned double agent for the Iranians)
Tarq Najem (Senior DAWA politician)
29th June: Two Peshmergas were killed and five were injured when they were targeted by an IED in the north east of Baqouba.

Strelkov, Berezin and Militia Briefings, June 27-28, 2014

Combined for June 27-28, 2014
Translated from Russian by Gleb Bazov

#1 – Commentary from Igor Strelkov, June 27, 2014, 14:56
Original: Strelkov Info

Regarding a Militia tank allegedly taken out by the Ukrainian army

- Igor Ivanovich, what is this photography that the Ukies are posting all over the place on the Internet?

Igor Strelkov: How should I know? Perhaps it’s one of their own tanks, which burned down near Yampol (I think they lost one there last evening). All of ours are fine. One was hit with an RPG, but the dynamic defence [absorbed the blow], the second has three holes in its armour from a 14.5mm weapon, but the turret is fine. That’s it – no other damage.

#2 – Briefing from Fyodor Berezin, June 27, 2014, 20:08
Original: Strelkov Info

Berezin’s statement following surrender of Ukrainian Military Base No. 3004

Surely, we are fascists, sadists, terrorists, and separatists, and yet … From 03:00 in the morning and until 15:00 in the afternoon we continued to release the [detained conscripts]. Called all the moms, dad, brothers, and sisters. First we dealt with the locals. Then we started the process of releasing the kids to their parents. From every mom we obtained a written confirmation of release and a phone number. This is to enable us to have control over what happens to the guys. In other words, we hope thereby to safeguard them from violence by the Ukie aficionados of dismemberment.

Neither I, nor my guys slept this night, but it was all worth it. This time, the job was done to a grade-A standard.

Photograph – F. Berezin: “My personal trophies”.

#3 – Briefings from Locations, June 27, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

The night was not remarkable in terms of observed activity.

This morning, two explosions occurred at 04:45 and 05:30, near Donetsk, in Stanitsa Ogorodnoye, near the railway bridge.

About 12:30, there were several explosions near the intersection of Shorse and Treneva streets. As well, during the day, maneuver-centric engagements and explosions took place in the area of Stankostroy, near Slavyansk. There was no calm in the suburbs of Slavyansk during the day. A battle took place in the Artyomovsk district.

17:30 (MSK) – Combat resumed on the outskirts of Slavyansk, a KPVT [Note 1: heavy/large-calibre armour-mounted machine gun] is heard working.

17:40 (MSK) – Artillery fire directed at Slavyansk coming from Karachun and the Meloviye Mountains.

17:50 (MSK) – Artillery fire coming for Shurov.

18:05 (MSK) – Intense shelling of Semyonovka, using heavy artillery, is ongoing. By the way, one of the Ukies checkpoints was leveled to the ground last night.

18:35 (MSK) – A column of Ukie detachments (infantry, armoured vehicles) moving from Izyum in the direction Nikolayevka, is currently near the Kolonyanka village (not far from Krivaya Luka). No cars are allowed to pass the area, and several civilian vehicles were fired upon; casualties unknown. As a result, the composition [of the column] is not known. Around 21:00 (MSK), this column likely passed by Krestishchi.

Note 1: KPVT-14.5mm is a Soviet-designed 14.5x114mm-calibre heave armour-mounted machine gun. See Wikipedia.

#4 – Briefing from the Kramatorsk Militia, June 27, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

Last night Ukies decided to blow to bits the chlorination station in Kramatorsk, located in the centre of the city (on a wasteland patch). The outcome: two shells hit the 6th and the 7th floor of a nearby building, one shell hit the refueling stating, and tow – the 20th workshop of NKMZ plant. None his the intended target. And this is [happening] in the city centre.

21:36 (MSK) – Battles starting in Kramatorsk (DPR [Donetsk People’s Republic]) and in the suburbs of Lugansk, in Metallist and Kamennaya Boroda (LPR [Lugansk People’s Republic]).

#5 – Briefing from the Militia, June 28, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

00:30 (MSK) – Artillery fire opened against Yampol (near Kranisy Liman) from the Kirov highway.

00:45 (MSK) – Several signal flares coming from the direction of Zeleniy Klin. In LPR there is a battle for control of the border village Vlasovka (near the Russian Donetsk). In Artyomovsk, the Ukie army fired upon a scheduled motor coach; 2 civilians died. After several shots hit the front shield window [of the motor coach], the bus driver lost control and crashed into a garage of a private residence on Tchaikovskiy street. The driver dies on the spot. A woman who was [travelling] in the bus was taken to surgery, where she died from heavy injuries and wounds.

#6 – Morning Briefing from Locations, June 28, 2014, 12:49
Original: Strelkov Info

The night was tense near Karlovka, with heightened drone activity reported. From early morning battles raged in the area of Krasniy (Chervonniy) Partisan. It is difficult to tell what the situation was by 10:45 (MSK), there is still little information, but it appears that the NazGuard detachments have suffered casualties and are retreating.

12:05 (MSK) – A propeller aircraft flying over Slavyansk-Nikolayevka-Kramatorsk parachuted cargo consisting of five containers in the Karachun area. Last time the Kramatorsk Militia made good use of a similar cargo [delivery].

Video of cargo being parachuted by Ukrainian aircraft

#7 – Briefing from the DPR Press Service, June 28, 2014, 13:33
Original: Strelkov Info

Military Base No. 3023 of Internal Forces of the Ukrainian Ministry of Internal Affairs voluntarily laid down their weapons. Conscripts were released by the DPR government.

On June 28, around 06:00 – 07:00 in the morning, NazGuard attempted to retake the border checkpoint near Krasnopartisansk [Krasniy/Chervonniy Partisan] in LPR, but the attack was repelled.

Video of Military Base No. 3023 following its surrender

#8 – Briefing from Igor Strelkov, June 28, 2014, 15:30

In the course of the night, 10 drones were conducting intelligence scouting operations over Slavyansk, in breach of the conditions of the so-called “ceasefire”.

In the morning, enemy aircraft dropped military cargo in the Kramatorsk area. Anti-aircraft units of the Militia did not open fire.

The enemy resumed the movement of its military columns along the Kharkov-Rostov highway, in the area of BZS [refueling station] and Vostochniy checkpoints (Checkpoints No. 3 and No. 4 according to enemy classification). According to information obtained by our scouting parties, a large amount of ammunitions, intended for shelling of Militia positions, was delivered by one of these columns. Due to the fact that these actions constitute a violation of the ceasefire agreement, the column of the enemy was attacked with mortar fire in the area of the Vostochniy checkpoint. The enemy mortar company, located near the noted checkpoint shelled Semyonovka and Militia positions, following which artillery and mortar strikes were made against this company. The enemy suffered casualties.

The Militia intelligence confirmed [continued] transfers of forces and equipment toward the outskirts of Slavyansk and Kramators. The enemy is preparing for a complete clean-up of the Yampol settlement.

Slavyansk garrison warns that it will continue to interdict any future attempts to use the state of ceasefire for the purpose of preparing an assault on the [Militia] positions.

On other fronts, the Militia continues to abide by the ceasefire regime and confines itself to observing the activity of Ukrainian military formations.

#9 – Report, June 28, 2014, 13:55 and 14:44
Original: Strelkov Info #1 and Strelkov Info #2

Video of the damage to the Russian Gukovo border crossing checkpoint

Once again, Ukrainian shells ended up on Russian territory. Charges [launched] by the Ukrainian military hit two settlements in the Rostov oblast.

According to preliminary information, one of the shells broke through the gate of a private residence in the city of Gukovo, on Smirnov street. The second shell, presumably launched from a mortar, exploded in the Vasetskiy Khutor, in the Krasnoulinsk are, leaving behind a crater 40cm by 30cm.

According to a source in [Russian] law-enforcement agencies of the Rostov oblast, shelling from the Ukrainian side continued from 08:00 until 10:00 in the morning. A shell, presumably from a mortar, landed on the territory of Vasetskiy Khutor. [The shell] created an [oval] crater 20cm deep, with diameters of 30sm and 40sm. A task force is now working onsite. From review of the shards it is difficult to determine visually that type of the ammunition was used. There are no casualties among civilians.

On June 28, Ukrainians again shelled the Russian border. Ukrainian shell crossed the border and exploded on the territory of the Russian customs checkpoint at Gukovo. The explosion caused severe damaged to the checkpoint building; window panes have been blown and walls are partially destroyed.

#10 – Short Briefing from Igor Strelkov, June 28, 2014, 17:16
Original: Strelkov Info

All night drones flew over us – over 10 of them simultaneously. It appears that Ukies consider artillery scouting to be perfectly consistent with the ceasefire regime.

Last night, the enemy open fire (including with mortars) at the city outskirts. Destruction in the private housing area near the Vosnichniy settlement are reported.

In the morning, Su-25 aircraft twice parachuted cargos for [the enemy] detachments at the Kramatorsk airfield and other locations. Due to strong wind a large part of the cargo was carried far to the side and did no make its destination. Unfortunately, the parachutes did not fly our way [either].

About 13:00, an intense mortar exchange took place between our positions at Semyonovka and the stronghold of the enemy enemy support positions near the Vostochniy settlement. It is unclear who began the confrontation (I was told that the enemy is responsible. [However], I do not preclude the possibility that our fighters could not refuse the temptation to conduct strikes against yet another ammunition supply column [of the enemy] that was travelling along the highway). In the course of the skirmish, the enemy engaged its a mortar company [Note: original – rota] and a howitzer battery at the rear. From our side, we used the “many times destroyed” Nona [Note 1: 2S9 Nona – a 120mm mortar]. In addition, a group of our fighters advanced toward the checkpoint and worked it over with an AGS [Note 2: AGS-17 “Plamya” grenade launcher] A number of mortar nests were destroyed; Ukies certainly suffered casualties. However, the shelling of Semyonovka by the enemy has not stopped.

The enemy is transferring more and more NazGuard detachments to our area. Perhaps they think that they can convince the “svidomye” [Note 3: I.e. the “nationally conscious” or Maidanites] to attempt an assault on the city. Frank speaking, I would not try in their place. However, perhaps one of the goals of this war is the maximum possible “utilization” [I.e. – elimination] of Maidanites? If so – then yes. [An assault] makes sense [in this case].

Note 1: 2S9 Nona is a 120mm mortar, usually self-propelled. See Wikipedia.

Note 2: AGS-17 “Plamya” grenade launcher is a heavy infantry support weapon, designed to operate from a tripod or it can be mounted on an installation or vehicle. See Wikipedia.

Note 3: Svidomiye comes from Svidomost, alternatively “Nazionalna Svidomost” – “National Consciousness”. A good article on this phenomenon, in Russian, can be found at -Свидомость

#11 – Information from the DPR Press Service, June 28, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

Last night, Ukrainian force shelled the residential buildings in the private sector of Selidovo. Three buildings were destroyed, all night the city was filled with terrible rumbling and noise; most likely, [they] were firing with something heavy. There are no militiamen in Selidovo.

Artillery strikes with heave weapons also occurred in the city of Ukrainsk, in the Donetsk oblast, which is located near Selidov. According to reports from local residents, forces of the Ukrainian NazGuard are located in Selidovo and Ukrainsk.

#12 – Statement by Alexander Karyakin, Chair of the Presidium of the Supreme Council of LPR, June 28, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

Alexander Karyakin, Chair of the Presidium of the Supreme Council of LPR, told us that Ukrainian forces are not abiding by the terms of ceasefire and are controlled by Kolomoiskiy:

“Ukrainian forces are, in fact, ignoring the order issued by Poroshenko. Either the Presideng lacks sufficient authority, or the armed forces are making independent decisions. There is also a figure like Kolomoiskiy, who announced that he would not be abiding by the President’s order to cease fire.

If you compare the situation in the Lugansk People’s Republic prior to and following the ceasefire, you won’t find any global changes. The military aggression has slowed down, but, overall, it would not be correct to say that the situation is calm.

The armed forces are constantly moving. Forces are being pulled up to the boundaries [of contested centres], and artillery strikes against settlements continue; civilians are dying. The extension of the ceasefire to June 30 will change nothing: shelling has continued as before.

#13 – Briefing from the Militia, June 28, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

This morning, despite the announced ceasefire, the NazGuard attempted to take control over the Krasniy Partisan border checkpoint; however, the attack was repelled. We are confirming casualty details.

Internal Force’s Military Base 3023 of the Ukrainian Ministry of Internal Affairs in Donetsk voluntarily laid down their weapons. Conscripts were released.

Situation during the day was relatively calm. In the course of the day, Ukrainian forces continued to shell Slavyansk.

Junta continues to transfer its troops in the area of Shchastye and the Metallist settlement. Two Grad systems an approximately 23 BMP APCs were transferred to these locations.

The Gukovo customs checkpoint in the Rostov oblast was damaged by a direct hit with a shell that was launched from the Ukrainian territory. Another shell landed in the Vasetskiy Khutor, in the Gukovo district. Another shell exploded on the territory of the Shakhta-24 settelement.

22:45 (MSK) – shooting coming from the side of the Kirovsk highways, KPVT and “samovars” heard working. The intended target of the shooting is not known; it is possible that the adjacent forest belt is the target.

#14 – Commentary from Igor Strelkov, June 28, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

- Igor Ivanovich, you are extremely well-natured with POWs who caused irreparable damage to buildings, enterprises and the residents of the settlements that were subject to artillery strikes and violence. In particular, you [treat well] all conscripts. Isn’t it time to make the POWs work and materially compensate the damage caused? Let them work to rebuild the economy, and their parents from Lvov can buy building materials with their savings. Let them rebuild that which they destroyed, and, first and foremost, [work] on the frontlines and in Semyonovka.

Igor Strelkov: Unlike the enemy, we intend to full abide by the POW convention. (I will note only that saboteurs and spies do not have the benefit of this convention.)

#15 – Briefing from the Militia, June 28, 2014, 23:53
Original: Strelkov Info

Artillery shelling of Rubezhniy and the Metallist settlement (Lugans) is currently ongoing. In Kramatorsk, there is shooting in the Damanskiy district, as well as machine gun fire and explosions in the area of the airfield.

23:20 (MSK) – A mortar battery is shelling Semyonovka, presumably from Krasniy Liman.

23:50 (MSK) – In the area of Semyonovka a maneuver-centric battle is ongoing, using a “Rogatka” [Note 1: T-72B2 “Rogatka” (also T-72BM) main battle tank)] and an AGS.

01:55 (MSK) – Ukrainian artillery is firing from Karachun. There is a battle in the area of the Kramatorsk airfield.

Local residents reported signal flares in the area of Shchastye – Metallist, following which battles resumed. Mortar units and howitzers heard working, automatic weapons fire does not stop for a minute.

Note 1: “Rogatka” or T-72B2 “Rogatka” (also T-72BM) is a Soviet-designed main battle tank. See Wikipedia.

Videos of Kramatorsk Shelling

#16 – Briefing from the Kramatorsk Militia, June 28, 2014
Original: Strelkov Info

Just now we worked over the airfield with a mortar. About 17 volleys from various positions. Something loudly exploded at the airfield and glow was observed. Ukies opened return fire against positions which we used several days ago. To their credit, I must say that they fired with precision … into a destroyed and long-abandoned cow bard. However, there was no one at that position (good sense is a priority in our ranks). We could also hear our tanks shooting at Ukies positions. Where exactly were they aiming and the results of the operation will be known tomorrow.

#17 – Commentary from a Kramatorsk Militiaman, June 29, 2014, 3:21
Original: Strelkov Info

Regarding the video of streamer Vlad’s interrogation by NazGuard

Video of streamer Vlad’s interrogations

I will spend a few minutes, otherwise allotted to sleep, to comment on this video.

My comments will be simple – this video is not actually threatening (although the detainee was, of course, scared, just as anyone else in his place would have been), but, how should I put it, I can’t even find the right words … Let’s call it meaningless. Why? Take a look at videos of POW interrogations in Slavyansk, Lugansk, in other cities. [You will find] POWs from saboteur-intelligence groups, which consist of professional soldiers, paratroopers and military scouts, of spetsnaz. [You will find] captured female snipers, which correct artillery fire, tankists and APC operators/technicians, fighters of the various “guards”. And now, this Ukie aphid, whose face you wouldn’t find in the crowd even if he did not wear a mask, captures a 16-year-old Internet activist and threatens militiamen that he has bullets enough for everyone? Does not he find himself laughable?

P.S.: Prior to talking about having enough ammo, it is best that he find out what really goes on with this indispensable product at the front: $2 for 5.45x39 bullets (AK-47 and RPK [Note 1: RPK-74 is a 5.45mm handheld Kalashnikov machine gun] are the most widespread weapons), 7.62x39 is even more expensive. And, if you were unlucky enough to get an SVD [Note 2: SVD is the Dragunov sniper rifle], which uses 7.62x54 bullets, or a PMK [Note 3: PKM is a 7.62mm modernized Kalashnikov machine gun], then, my friend … send you mom a telegram so that she can send you money, $5 for a magazine. So, that’s how it is. And this is the real situation on the ground in Ukie forces (don’t know whether it’s NazGuard or not, but the information comes straight from the source). So, you see, it’s very different than torture an underage kid in Kiev. All those who could yell, jump, throw stones, they are all here. So, we are waiting for the next “liberator of Ukraina” to show up here.

And, at the end, free advice on the issue of their uniform: you have to change your getup. I won’t go into details, but, in a getup like that, you won’t have a chance to say “glory to Ukraine” when you are in the forest belt.

Note: Streamer Vlad has been released from captivity and is now with the Militia