Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
by Bernard (bernard) on Fri Sep 2nd, 2022 at 01:15:34 PM EST
by gk (gk (gk quattro due due sette @gmail.com)) on Fri Sep 2nd, 2022 at 06:37:25 PM EST
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RFERL | Russia To Launch [Vostok] Exercises With China, India Amid Heightened Tensions, 1-9 Sep
"India also belongs to several multilateral blocs that include both Russia and China -- from the BRICS with Brazil and South Africa to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization with Pakistan and Central Asian countries."
WION | INS Vikrant is symbol of new India's potential, says PM Modi, 2 Sep A/V (EN, Hindi)


COL. WEBER: Two years ago, you did some Farsi translations for Army intelligence. You made quick work of those insurgent videos.
LOUISE: You made quick work of those insurgents.
WEBER: You are on the top of everyone's list when it comes to translations. And you have another two years in the SSBI. So you still have top secret clearance. That's why I'm in your office and not at Berkeley. I have something I need you to translate for me.
Now you heard it. What do you make of it?
LOUISE: How many?
WEBER: How many what?
LOUISE: How many speaking?
WEBER: Two. Assume they were not speaking at the same time.
LOUISE: Are sure? Did they have mouths?
WEBER: How would you approach translating this? Do you hear any words? Phrases?
LOUISE: I don't know.
WEBER: So what can you tell me?
LOUISE: I can tell you that it's impossible to translate from an audio file. I would need to be there to interact with them.
WEBER: You didn't need that with the Farsi translations.
LOUISE: I didn't need it because I already knew the language. Bu this, this is ...
WEBER: I know what you're doing.
LOUISE: Tell me what I'm doing.
WEBER: I'm not taking you to Montana. It's all I can do keeping it from turning into a tourist site for everybody who has a TS clearance.
LOUISE: I'm just telling you what it would take to do this job.
WEBER: This is not a negotiation. If I leave here, your chance is gone.
LOUISE: Colonel? You mentioned Berkeley. Are you going to ask Danvers next>
WEBER: Maybe.
LOUISE: Before you commit to him, ask him the Sanskrit word for "war" and its translation.
WEBER: Gavisti. He says it means "an argument". What do you say it means?
LOUISE: "A desire for more cows."
WEBER: Pack yyour bags.
by Cat on Fri Sep 2nd, 2022 at 10:42:47 PM EST
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APsplainin RFERL
The Russian Defense Ministry said that the Vostok 2022 (East 2022) exercise will be held until Sept. 7 at seven firing ranges in ["]Russia["]'s Far East and the Sea of Japan and involve more than 50,000 troops and over 5,000 weapons units, including 140 aircraft and 60 warships.
copy editor STAT!
Russian General Staff chief, Gen. Valery Gerasimov, will personally oversee the drills involving troops from several ex-Soviet nations [sic], China, India, Laos, Mongolia, Nicaragua[,] and Syria.
RFERL: CN, IN, LA, MN, NI, DZ, SY (G20, EAS, QUAD, SCO, CELAC, INSTC, OPEC, OIC, BRICS, CPEC, LMC) "as well as" BY, KZ, KG, and TJ ("ex-Soviet nations"; current CSTO)
The [RF] Defense Ministry noted that as part of the maneuvers, the Russian and Chinese navies in the Sea of Japan will "practice joint action to protect sea communications, areas of marine economic activity and support for ground troops in littoral areas."
by Cat on Sat Sep 3rd, 2022 at 04:38:28 PM EST
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Awful Avalanche | Ukraine War Day #193: Russian Signallers Best In The World!, 4 Sep
This morning I was browsing the Russian MSM and I saw this piece, which linked to this piece. I found this interesting, because it doesn't seem like radio signallers get as much attention or admiration as they used to. I am sure we all grew up on those thrilling stories about WWII, the breaking of the German Enigma code, that sort of thing.
The first piece is entitled "The Tuva Phenomenon", and this story reminds me of those American Navajo Indian Codetalkers of WWII. Although the Navajos had no particular reason to be patriotic to the Federal Government of the United States of America (allude to the infamous Long Walk of 1864), their leaders felt it would be best for their people if they were allowed to contribute to the war effort against the Japanese.
In 1944 Tuva joined the USSR more or less voluntarily; and in 1992 was a signatory to the treaty which created the Russian Federation. This country lies way out there in southern Siberia, bordering on Mongolia, to the South. Ethnic Tuvans speak Tuvan as their native language. According to wiki[wtf], Tuvan is a member of the Turkic language family. The grammar is Turkic, but the vocabulary includes many borrowed words from Mongolian, Tibetan, and Russian. Just from scanning the description, one can see that Tuvan is a very complex language, both phonologically (it has relatively few consonants, but many vowels and also length and pitch) and grammatically. Which would make it perfect as the kind of language that nobody can learn unless they imbibed it with their mother's milk!

archived Ethnologue, Step 1. in Has the backstop back-fired on Ireland?, Vinay Lal

by Cat on Sun Sep 4th, 2022 at 09:19:34 PM EST
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by Cat on Sun Sep 4th, 2022 at 09:50:08 PM EST
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by Cat on Mon Sep 5th, 2022 at 01:09:49 PM EST
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by Cat on Mon Sep 5th, 2022 at 01:05:04 PM EST
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euractiv | What's in a name? Czechs learn to live in 'Czechia', 5 Sep integrity
Nearly three decades after Czechoslovakia peacefully split into two states, Czechs are still looking for a proper name in English for their country.
archived countries that changed their names--and why
"The current mess... in naming our country is the biggest obstacle to creating a 'brand'. We want to change it," said [Deputy FM Martin] Dvorak.
by Cat on Mon Sep 5th, 2022 at 08:48:15 PM EST
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voldemoRT: Russia and China launch joint Pacific, 15 Sep
Representing the Russian Pacific Fleet is the frigate Marshal Shaposhnikov, corvettes Sovershenny, Gromky and Aldar Tsydenzhapov, and the medium naval tanker Pechenga, Moscow said. The People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) sent the destroyer Nanchang, the frigate Yancheng, and the supply ship Dongpinghu.

While the Russian Defense Ministry did not specify the area of operations for the joint patrol, in a video shared on Telegram, Pacific Fleet deputy commander Aleksandr Bagdasarov mentioned the Sea of Okhotsk, north of Japan.

The joint naval mission comes on the heels of Vostok 2022, the week-long war games in the Russian Far East, involving more than 50,000 troops from 13 countries. According to Major General Vladimir Omelyanovich, the purpose of the event was to "create a coalition force that would plan and implement a special military operation aimed at ensuring peace and security in the region."

by Cat on Thu Sep 15th, 2022 at 10:32:25 PM EST
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TASS | Tokayev resigns. Who will become the new president of Kazakhstan, 2 Sep long story, short
Tokayev's speech was extremely unexpected for the population and the expert community. The powers of the president [Tokayev] end only after two years, and before that there was not a single hint of a new electoral process [eg. confidence vote, dissolved parl).

"For me, the interests of the state are above all. Therefore, I am ready to shorten the term and go to early elections," the head of Kazakhstan said in parliament.

term limit controversy
the term of office will be increased from five to seven years and at the same time re-election will be banned. The question of the sequence in which this will happen has caused controversy in the media. Many believed that the amendment would come into force after the election, meaning that the new president would serve for five years and then be able to run for another seven years.

[...]"The current campaign will be held according to a new principle. That is, before the elections, the parliament will introduce Tokayev's proposal into the legislation, which now allows running for two terms of five years," political analyst Islam Kuraev explained to RIA Novosti.

Kazakhstan is the first country in the post-Soviet space that introduces a one-term limit. Right now, in neighboring Uzbekistan, they are preparing a constitutional reform that will allow President Shavkat Mirziyoyev to participate in elections for the third time. And last year in Tajikistan Emomali Rahmon won for the fifth time.
In addition, a new government will be formed in Kazakhstan in the first half of next year [2023]. "We will get a new composition of deputies representing the interests of wide groups of citizens.[...]," the leader of the country explained.

resignation Nursultan Nazarbayev
Experts interviewed by RIA Novosti are convinced that it was this episode that prompted the Kazakh leader to hold snap elections. "Tokayev wants to finally gain legitimacy after the well-known events at the beginning of the year. He needs to clarify which part of the citizens supports him. And of course, he hopes to win...."
One way or another, such initiatives will open a new milestone in the politics of the republic. It doesn't matter if Tokayev wins, but early elections will have a positive impact on the democratic principles developing inside the country.
archived Kazakhstan Unrest, CSTO, Central Referendum Commission
by Cat on Sun Sep 4th, 2022 at 12:12:24 AM EST
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Astana Times | Kazakh Parliament Adopts Constitutional Amendments on Single Presidential Term and Renaming of Capital, 16 Sep
the presidential term in Kazakhstan will be increased from five to seven years, and the right to be elected will be limited to one tenure.
stablishment of a new institution of the Constitutional Court, the reduction of the President's authority while expanding the powers of the Parliament, the implementation of a mixed electoral system, the simplification of the procedure for registering parties, and the strengthening of the regions' independence, forms a new institutional design of the state structure with an optimal balance between the branches of power.
akoda | President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev took part in the Summit of the Council of Heads of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization Member States in an enlarged format
"In his speech, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev focused on the priority areas of development of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization [SCO]."
Astana Times | SCO Summit: President Tokayev Focuses on Transit and Transport, Food and Energy Security, 17 Sep excerpts
by Cat on Sat Sep 17th, 2022 at 10:01:15 PM EST
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to attrit has entered the room.
by Cat on Sat Sep 10th, 2022 at 08:41:14 PM EST
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stateization has entered the room
by Cat on Sun Sep 11th, 2022 at 03:00:34 PM EST
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presentism has entered the room.
by Cat on Sun Sep 11th, 2022 at 05:23:08 PM EST
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macrozonation has entered the room.
by Cat on Sun Sep 18th, 2022 at 01:32:38 AM EST
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Yesterday: Azerbaijan and Armenia. Today, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan. Are things unraveling in the Soviet Russian empire?

by Bernard (bernard) on Wed Sep 14th, 2022 at 08:48:15 AM EST
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Conflict in the Caucasus, still under-reported.
by Bernard (bernard) on Thu Sep 15th, 2022 at 05:35:50 PM EST
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RT published an informative article; one that academics might categorize a "survey" historiography summarizing Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan territorial conflicts before and after the Glasnost fracture in central planning. It's brief yet too long to reproduce in whole or part here. What I find surprising is the authors' criticism of post-imperial bolshivik indifference to ethnic traditions when drawing political divisions (read: administrative districts). To my mind, each "geopolitical time bomb" recalls the organizational method employed by Great Powers to rationalize (read: simplify ) mangement rules, later divestment or, ahem, liberation, of their "over-seas territories". Vestgial "borders" are  a living legacy with which SCO Council members are all too familiar.

Another Afghanistan in the making? How a fully-fledged war between two ex-Soviet states could threaten stability in Central Asia, What has happened on the border of Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan and where will it lead?


While the leaders of more than 20 major Asian countries - including Russia, China, Turkey, and India - held talks in the ancient city of Samarkand only a few hundred kilometers away, large-scale hostilities erupted on the border between Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan, last week. As their presidents also participated in the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit, the conflict erupted with the use of heavy weapons and claimed hundreds of lives.

It all began on Wednesday, when the Kyrgyz border service discovered their Tajik counterparts had taken up combat positions on part of the state border, thus nullifying previously reached agreements. In response to the demand to leave the territory, they opened fire. Fighting with the use of heavy weapons continued for several days. The death toll was much higher than in the course of several past incidents. Some 59 deaths were reported in Bishkek and 41 in Dushanbe. Most likely, these are not the final numbers.

On Monday, the heads of the intelligence services of the two countries signed a peace protocol. However, the reasons that forced the parties to take up arms have not disappeared, making a repetition of the conflict almost inevitable.

Gordian Knot of the East

by Cat on Fri Sep 23rd, 2022 at 12:11:03 PM EST
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