Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
are bewildered by the retreat :

Russia's announcement that it would "drastically" scale down its military presence near the Ukrainian capital has triggered fears among pro-war factions at home that Russia is giving up on its goals.

Russian Deputy Defense Minister Alexander Fomin made the announcement Tuesday following Russian-Ukrainian peace talks in Istanbul, saying the decision was made in an effort to "increase mutual trust" and create conditions for a peace deal.
Vladimir Medinsky, the head of the Russian delegation, said Moscow would scale down its operations to the north of Kyiv and in the northern city of Chernihiv, 100 kilometers from the Russian border.  

The statements - the first signs of a possible de-escalation by Russia after more than a month of fighting - were met with frustration by pro-war Russians, who say the Kremlin's stated goals of "denazifying" and "demilitarizing" Ukraine are far from achieved.

"I myself was in a state of panic yesterday," Alexander Prokhanov, a nationalist writer who has supported Russia's war in Ukraine, told The Moscow Times of the news.  

"Today I feel better. The night was accompanied by heavy bombardment of Ukrainian targets throughout the country, from Lviv to Donetsk," said Prokhanov, who said he sees the war as an effort to address the wounds left open by the Soviet collapse.

But some are more sceptical of the danger of impending peace :

Even some of the Kremlin's most loyal propagandists, including state television anchor Vladimir Solovyov, were less than enthusiastic following the announcement.

"No one is going to give up. It is worth remembering that every time Putin announced the withdrawal of troops from Syria, our grouping there only increased," Solovyov said.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II
by eurogreen on Sun Apr 3rd, 2022 at 03:46:46 PM EST
"How's that 'Not a Real Country' taking holding up, Alex?  Got your asses kicked, eh?"

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.
by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Mon Apr 4th, 2022 at 01:48:44 PM EST
[ Parent ]
and as for their effort to "increase mutual trust" ...

Russian state media have dismissed the horrifying images and testimonies that emerged from Bucha as western-orchestrated "fakes" and "planned provocations", claiming "Ukrainian Nazis" are responsible for the deaths of the civilians.

"A flagrantly brutal provocation by Ukrainian Nazis," said Olga Skabeeva, host of the widely watched state media talk show 60 Minutes on Monday.

"Zelenskiy and the so-called civilized west is attempting to create a hybrid, fake version of Srebrenica."

I do hope the Russians will give us the names of the Ukrainian actors that so brilliantly played the roles of the corpses with the exploded heads.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Mon Apr 4th, 2022 at 02:39:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm about done with the Russians, and about done with the hot takes that blame us for this bullshit.

From my perspective, we've been very restrained here.  (We'd be well within our rights to turn their prissy battalions into oatmeal here -- and, despite the "weakness" of our "cancel culture" and "wokeism" we could do it pretty handily.)  

"We will give the Ukrainians weapons to defend themselves, but we won't get into a direct confrontation unless the Russians cross into the NATO footprint.  We will fight you if you cross that line, but we don't want to."

It's a completely reasonable position, as far as I'm concerned.

Ukraine had no prospect of joining NATO.  Ukraine is not a regime of Nazis, as a cursory glance at the size of the Great and Powerful Azov and the electoral outcomes will demonstrate.  Ukraine posed no threat to Russia.  Russia's supposed "security concerns" were horseshit -- nobody is invading a nuclear power.

Fuck Russia.

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.

by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Mon Apr 4th, 2022 at 03:29:21 PM EST
[ Parent ]
tl;dr. Thank god Uncle Joe's president and not me, because me take is increasingly: "You want to fight us for your weirdo delusions about the Cold War and humiliation and Orthodoxy and all that shit -- and you're too much of a pasty little bitch to say so and step up, so you took it out on these poor folks in Ukraine, because you know you'd get your stupid Russian ass kicked if you actually had the stones to try what you'd like to."

Be nice to America. Or we'll bring democracy to your country.
by Drew J Jones (pedobear@pennstatefootball.com) on Mon Apr 4th, 2022 at 03:41:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
In fact, it's the poor suckers in the Russian Federation army that actually have to do the fighting, who got their asses severely kicked. Bearing in mind that they were expecting flowers.

Indirect account, by survivors from Bucha

"There was 70 of the armoured vehicles, like tanks, and Russian soldiers walked alongside," he said. "It took about 40 minutes for them to pass our house. I watched and counted. And then the Ukrainians launched their shells at the Russians."

The first took out Savenko's shed in his large garden at the back. It was the first of many. The horribly exposed armoured vehicles tried to turn around, in panic, as the next more accurate wave of shells rained down upon them.

Thirty minutes of devastation ensued. Russian bodies were strewn across the road, hot metal flew through the air, smashing every window, enveloping the trees in fire, and turning the burning vehicles white hot.

Across Savenko's 30-metre hedge alone, nine devastated armoured vehicles were left burnt out, filling the air with the acrid smell of burning oil and metal.
Those Russians that could escape did. But an hour after the Ukrainian assault, the Russians came back to retrieve their dead - and to entrench themselves in Vokzal'na's gardens and what was left of its buildings, establishing points from which to send their artillery fire at the Ukrainian defenders. It would be a long and cruel occupation.

Personally, my first memory of contemporary war was the My Lai massacre (I was seven years old, and conceived a passionate hatred of war). This is Russia's My Lai moment.

It is rightly acknowledged that people of faith have no monopoly of virtue - Queen Elizabeth II

by eurogreen on Tue Apr 5th, 2022 at 06:42:53 AM EST
[ Parent ]
In that the guy in charge of covering it up will be paraded around as a moral authority until he dies of cancer fifty years later?
by generic on Tue Apr 5th, 2022 at 11:24:26 AM EST
[ Parent ]


Occasional Series