Putin’s excuses about troops in Ukraine are becoming increasingly feeble


Crack-cocaine smoking  Toronto mayor Rob Ford considers Putin's rejection of 'boot-on-the-ground' in eastern Ukraine

Crack-cocaine smoking Toronto mayor Rob Ford considers Putin’s rejection of ‘boot-on-the-ground’ in eastern Ukraine

Russian paratroopers have been captured in the Donetsk region of Ukraine having “crossed the border by accident” according to Russian military sources. A Ukraine government spokesman said ten Russian soldiers were captured.

Ukrainian television carried a lengthy report that included video excerpts of the interviews with the captured soldiers and claimed that they were from the 331st regiment of the 98th Svirsk airborne division. One of soldiers said “this is not our war”, whilst another, claiming to be Sergeant Andrei Generalov, said: “Stop sending in our boys. Why? This is not our war. And if we weren’t here, none of this would have happened. They would have sorted things out with the government themselves.” Russia emphatically refutes any suggestion that it is involved in the conflict in eastern Ukraine or that it is giving military assistance to the rebels. The facts on the ground do not support Russia’s innocent stance. The excuses that come from the Russian government are all one dimensional and weak, such as “The soldiers really did participate in a patrol of a section of the Russian-Ukrainian border [and] crossed it by accident on an unmarked section” leaving you wondering if they have ever heard of briefing their troops or equipping them with GPS.

A spokesperson for Ukraine’s security service said that the paratroopers had been captured over 20km into Ukrainian territory near the village of Dzerkalne, some 50km from the city of Donetsk. Andriy Lysenko a Ukrainian military spokesman  said: “This wasn’t a mistake, but a special mission they were carrying out.”

The Ukrainian and Russian presidents are meeting in Minsk, Belarus to try and come to an agreed settlement over the war, though having the last dictator in Europe, President Lukashenko, hosting it is something of an irony. With rigged elections and the opposition ‘marginalised’ in a judicial way, it is the last bastion of anti-democracy that is wholly in Europe. Putin will wistfully ask himself why he can’t have in Russia the autocracy that Lukashenko has in Minsk. Or maybe that is what Putin is really aiming for.

 

Pro-Russian rebels in Donetsk embarrass themselves by humiliating Ukrainian POWs


mob-rule-in-Donetsk

Ukrainians celebrated the national independence day today, which marks the day of their freedom from the former USSR. In Kyiv the with parade was respectful and dignified, but pro-Russian rebels in Donetsk held a parade that surely shows the sort of people that control Donetsk these days as they paraded and mocked captured servicemen through the streets in front of thousands of people jeering them whilst throwing anything at them that came to hand.

The parade was led by around fifty soldiers: prisoners of war who simply looked down as they walked, clearly in a very dirty state, their heads shaved and many of whom were clearly injured. and unkempt. 

They were jeered and shouted at and all manner of items were thrown at them, including shoes, eggs, bags of flour, dog excrement, empty water bottles and soiled nappies. As they were paraded through central Donetsk with their hands behind their backs, Tchaikovsky’s “Slavonic March,” was played throughout the streets. This music is a familiar and very patriotic piece to Russians..

prisoners-paraded-through-streets-Donetsk

To add to the humiliation, two tank trucks followed the prisoners-of-war, spraying soapy water onto the street as if to say that the street needed cleaning as the captives passed through the city. 

Those watching, men, women and children, screamed “Fascists!”,“Perverts!” and “Hang them from a tree!”  One woman told a TV crew “They are attacking our city. They are fascists. I am in favor of this parade.” A rebel soldier close to the parade, said that the parade proved how well the captives were treated “We keep them on cots and feed them three times a day,” he said.

This spectacle was organised to contrast with the traditional military Independence Day parade in Kiev, the national capital, where soldiers from the national army marched through the streets of the city, feted by cheering crowds.

cloud-of-flour-thrown-at-pows

The Geneva Conventions’ rules concerning POWs prohibit humiliation or parading prisoners publicly. 

The commander of the rebel militia made a public announcement after the parade had passed through the streets.  “Kiev said that on the 24th, on the Independence Day of Ukraine, they would have a parade. Indeed, they did march in Donetsk, although it wasn’t a parade,” top rebel commanderAlexander Zakharchenko said. “Soldiers of the armed forces of Kiev walked along the main streets of Donetsk. What Poroshenko planned has taken place.”

BBC map

Ukraine’s defence ministry voiced a strong protest about humiliation of these soldiers, saying. “The organisers of this disgusting event cannot be considered human,” a spokesman told Interfax-Ukraine news agency. “Nothing is holy” for them, he added.

prisoner-of-war-violation

You might imagine that shooting down the Malaysian Airlines plane would have embarrassed the pro-Russians into a more civilised way of conducting themselves, but it hasn’t. They seem to be completely shameless.

 

 

 

ASBO planned for extremists? Nah mate, that’s an ISBO innit?


Def to US eh innit

British Home Secretary, Theresa May, intends to introduce new legislation to counter the menace of Islamic fundamentalists, including an extremist ASBO. She will announce measures to deal with Muslim extremists in the UK, in light of the current situation.

Proposals are likely to include the curtailment of radical preachers that are not illegal under current UK laws. Religious firebrands such as controversial Saudi preacher Muhammad al-Arefe, who was recently banned from entering the UK for allegedly inciting British Muslim youth to join the jihad in the Middle East. Radical preacher Anjem Choudary has frequently been criticised by the Home Office and police service for his inflammatory comments about the rights of Islam and how British Muslims should further the cause, though he has been careful not to break existing laws.

Mrs May has written an article for the Daily Telegraph explaining the proposed changes and that they might entail. It will be illegal to be a member of an extremist group that involve disseminate violence, even if the group is not actually involved in terrorism. She set out her case by explaining the level of threat that the UK faces: 

“We are in the middle of a generational struggle against a deadly extremist ideology. We will be engaged in this struggle for many years, probably decades. We must give ourselves all the legal powers we need to prevail.”

“I am looking again at the case for new banning orders for extremist groups that fall short of the legal threshold for terrorist proscription, as well as for new civil powers to target extremists who seek to radicalise others.”

Ideologically supporting terrorism would become illegal, in the same way that financially supporting it is at the moment.The current threshold for banning membership of organisations requires the Home Secretary to prove that the group is directly involved in terrorist acts. Local and statutory authorities would also become involved in preventing radicalisation by actively banning those known to encourage acts of violence or promoting Jihadist views. 

The large number of young British Muslims who have left to fight with IS in Syria and Iraq has lead to the government evaluating the existing laws and they have clearly found that the law needs to be more robust to prevent British nationals being involved in atrocities, as was the case with the heinous execution of James Foley last week.

 The shadow home secretary,Yvette Cooper, said: “More action is needed to respond to the serious problem of people travelling to fight with ISIL. The Home Secretary’s confirmation that she is continuing to look at the recommendations of the Prime Minister’s Taskforce, announced last December, is welcome.

“Though there remains no detail on things like civil powers to tackle extremists or extremist groups for people to consider. However I remain concerned that the Government is not addressing the gaps in the ‘Prevent programme’ – especially the lack of support for community led approaches to preventing radicalisation and the Home Secretary also needs to respond to the concerns raised by the current and previous Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation about the decision to weaken control orders, where they have advised that stronger measures should be put in place.”

Maybe they should call the new personal restraints on individuals ISBOs?

The US and EU are lining up more sanctions against Russia for its incursion into Ukraine


Putin-sanctions

The US government issued the following warning to Russia on Friday concerning the aid convoy that was heading into Ukrainian territory without legal authority.

“Given that Ukraine has allowed international humanitarian groups to deliver aid within its territory, there is no logical reason why Russia should seek to deliver it,” U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power, told a Security Council meeting on Ukraine on Friday.

“Therefore, any further unilateral intervention by Russia into Ukrainian territory, including one under the guise of providing humanitarian aid, would be completely unacceptable and deeply alarming. And it would be viewed as an invasion of Ukraine,”

The EU and US, along with the Ukrainian government, accused Moscow of increasing the conflict in eastern Ukraine. Russia flatly denied the accusation saying that the unrest was the result of Ukraine’s use of force in the region and that its bid to end the rebellion has made the situation worse.

Over the last week NATO has repeatedly warned about invasion of the territory by Russia. It supported its claim by saying that Russia had amassed 20,000 troops on the Ukraine border. Once again, the Kremlin denied any plan to send or use troops in the rebellion in the Donetsk region.

While the world is in turmoil over Iraq, Russia invades eastern Ukraine


A Russian convoy of trucks carrying humanitarian aid for Ukraine, behind a police escort, drives along a road in the city of Voronezh

Moscow has directed its military to move artillery units manned by Russian personnel into Ukrainian territory while the world has been distracted by the murder of James Foley, the US photojournalist in Syria. It is believed that this weaponry has already been used to fire at Ukrainian forces, NATO officials said on Friday.

The incursion amounts to a significant escalation of the Kremlin’s military involvement in eastern Ukraine, which preceded the illegal entry of a convoy of Russian lorries, ostensibly carrying humanitarian aid, crossing the border into Ukrainian territory without Kiev’s permission, thus violating Ukraine’s sovereignty.

The EU and the US have been accusing Putin of supporting the separatist forces in eastern Ukraine since the rebellion started in March of this year, but the NATO countries have not had hard evidence that Russian soldiers were fighting in Ukrainian territory.

However, since mid-August NATO has received several reports detailing the direct involvement of Russian forces, said Oana Lungescu, a NATO spokesperson.“including Russian airborne, air defense and special operations forces in Eastern Ukraine, Russian artillery support — both cross-border and from within Ukraine — is being employed against the Ukrainian armed forces,” she added.

PR stunt to cover the Russian military incursion into Eastern Ukraine

PR stunt to cover the Russian military incursion into Eastern Ukraine

Anders Fogh Rasmussen, NATO’s secretary general, criticized the Russian incursion in a statement issued in Brussels on Friday. His statement said

“I condemn the entry of a Russian so-called humanitarian convoy into Ukrainian territory without the consent of the Ukrainian authorities and without any involvement of the International Committee of the Red Cross,”

“These developments are even more worrying as they coincide with a major escalation in Russian military involvement in Eastern Ukraine since mid-August, including the use of Russian forces,” the statement continued, adding: “We have also seen transfers of large quantities of advanced weapons, including tanks, armored personnel carriers and artillery to separatist groups in Eastern Ukraine. Moreover, NATO is observing an alarming buildup of Russian ground and air forces in the vicinity of Ukraine.”

The US announced its deep concern after the convoy entered Ukraine in violation of its sovereignty and urged Moscow to withdraw all its personnel and military hardware immediately. The Pentagon issued the following statement on Friday:

“This is a violation of Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. Russia must remove its vehicles and its personnel from the territory of Ukraine immediately. Failure to do so will result in additional costs and isolation.”

Death to informants – or were they?


Death to America

With a level of brutality we have come to expect from Gaza, eighteen suspected informants were peremptorily lined up and shot today. Hamas said that the executions were carried out by what it called the ‘Resistance’, which means it was an extra-judicial crime against humanity, not that Hamas is worrying about the human rights aspect of the atrocity. Well, it is an Islamic country!

Hamas officials told Reuters that the first eleven executions took place at a disused police station, however witnesses to the massacre of the other seven people said that they were shot by militia in Hamas uniforms outside the Al-Umari mosque in Gaza City. Such witness testimony conveys two conclusions: first that Hamas are lying when they speak of the executions being carried out by ‘resistance’ forces and two, that orchestrating this as a public spectacle is intended to terrorise anyone else that isn’t completely wedded to Hamas. We only have the word of Hamas that these people were informants, which means that these people were almost certainly completely innocent.

Israel may go over the top in its response at times, something that I have condemned, but they don’t line up their own people against a wall and shoot them. Islam may call itself the ‘religion of peace’ but looking at the fundamentalist factions of Islam, such as Hamas or IS, you would never guess it: peaceful would be the last word to come to mind and most people would probably break out laughing at the peaceful claim … except George Galloway of course!

 

How much will it take for the US allies to take effective action against IS?


Islamic State flag waving2

Judging by the ghastly execution of James Foley, the US must have succeeded in slowing down or even repelling the advances of the terrorist from IS in Iraq, but not so for their efforts in Syria. In this dark but calm moment the US looks at what its next step should be and the UK is horrified to discover that possibly as many as 1,500 British Muslims have migrated to fight with the Islamic State. 


In the US


 

General Martin Dempsey, current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the US, spoke out yesterday about the impossibility of the Islamic State terrorists being defeated unless their base in Syria was attacked.

The US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel said US air strikes were responsible for halting the Islamist advance in Iraq, but they currently believe that the militants will regroup, adding “They are beyond just a terrorist group. They marry ideology, a sophistication of strategic and tactical military prowess, they are tremendously well-funded… this is beyond anything that we have seen.”

These warnings were given after the Islamic State uploaded a video of the beheading of American photojournalist James Foley. Announcing a formal criminal investigation by US security services into the murder, Attorney General Eric Holder warned that “the US has a long memory”

Meanwhile, Gen Dempsey, said the Islamic State was “an organisation that has an apocalyptic, end-of-days strategic vision and which will eventually have to be defeated”.

“To your question, can they be defeated without addressing that part of their organisation which resides in Syria? The answer is no. That will have to be addressed on both sides of what is essentially at this point a non-existent border.”

Government Set To Ban Islamist Group That Planned Wootton Bassett March

In the UK

A British Member of Parliament, told Sky News that many more than 500 Muslim youths have joined the Islamic terrorist group, claiming that more than 1,500 young Britons may have been recruited by extremists fighting in Iraq and Syria. 

Khalid Mahmood MP said that the problem was much more serious than was previously realised and could mean that there would be significant problems for years to come. He said 

I imagine fifteen hundred certainly would be the lower end. If you look across the whole of the country, there’s been a number of people going across [to Syria].

Originally you had the British Syrians settled here who wanted to go back and play a part, then you had the Kurdish community, then almost two years ago you had the young British Muslim community going across – so if you add all that up you’ve got serious figures that we need to look at. Those will come back – certainly more than we are saying at the moment – and we do need to look at that.

Some of them go out there for nine months, some go out there for a year, some will just go out for six months or so. So we need to look at exactly how this is happening, what our border controls are like and we really need to bolster those border controls in order to ensure that we see the people coming through and deal with them.

Video footage has been discovered of the infamous Saudi cleric Mohammed al Arifi whilst preaching at Cardiff’s Al Manar mosque, the same one that was attended by two brothers, Nasser Muthana, 20, and his brother Aseel, 17,before they left the UK with a friend, Reyaad Khan, 20, to go and join the insurgency in Iraq and Syria.. Al Arifi is banned from Switzerland because of his support for Islamic Fundamentalism.

It is deeply worrying that he has ever been allowed to disseminate his poisonous preachings here.