Monthly Archives: February 2015

WW4 File: UKRAINE-RUSSIA WAR: Moscow-backed Donbass rebels concentrate firepower, keep up attacks near Ukrainian port city of Mariupol, follows lengthy siege of strategic railway town of Debaltseve, Feb. 17 retreat of government troops, shaky implementation of 2nd ceasefire since Sept.; NATO countries to send military advisers to regions outside combat zone: US military to train four companies of National Guard near Polish border; USAF deploys 12 A-10 tank-busters to Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, Thunderbolts to be later “forward deployed to other partner nations in E. Europe”; UK troops to train Ukrainian counterparts in medical, logistics, intelligence, infantry skills; Polish defense official: “The defense ministry intends to send Polish instructors to support the training of Ukrainian non-commissioned officers”; German BfV chief Hans-Georg Maaßen: Russia reverting to “Soviet-style” spying in Europe, ferreting out NATO intentions regarding Ukraine crisis

Red Dawn Alert/Communist Bloc Military Updates: Russia counters NATO military buildup in ex-Soviet Bloc, political and non-lethal military support for Ukraine, DM Shoigu conducts official visits to leftist allies in Caribbean Basin, arranges joint naval/air defense exercise with Venezuela for late 2015, second such drill since 2008, reaffirms Moscow’s commitment to arm Venezuelan military, follows socialist president Maduro’s Jan. trip to Moscow, conference with Putin, OPEC leaders on global oil price collapse; Shoigu travels on to Managua, Havana, praises Ortega, Castro for opening up harbors to Russian warships, pledges Moscow’s technical involvement in Chinese-led Nicaragua Canal megaproject; Gen. Zepeda, chief of Nicaraguan MI, comments on planned purchase of Russian-built MiG-29 fighter jets, disavows intent to attack C. American neighbors: “We plan to buy a batch of warplanes that would be used only for defence purposes, not for air strikes”; Kremlin’s top general Gerasimov announces military drills with Cuba, North Korea, other states: “We are planning an expansion of the communication lines of our military central command. We are entering preliminary negotiations with the armed forces of Brazil, Vietnam, Cuba and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea”

With news like this, it is obvious that the Communist Bloc militaries are pooling their resources for a collective blow against the USA and its allies. NATO’s “meddling” in Ukraine will be Moscow’s pretext for a preemptive strike. If Nicaraguan past/present dictator Ortega equips his tiny air force with MiG-29s, who’s to say these aircraft won’t actually be piloted by Russians, who can then provide cover for strategic bombers that have already made provocative touchdowns in Caracas and Managua?

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Red Dawn Alert/WW4 File: UKRAINE-RUSSIA WAR: Ukrainian National Guard launches offensive against Donbass rebels near Mariupol, covert Russian regulars led deadly missile attack against strategic port city on Jan. 24; President Poroshenko visits Kramatorsk on Wed., after 15 civilians, soldiers killed in rebel rocket barrage day before; travels to Minsk for talks with leaders of France, Germany, Russia, then Brussels for EU summit; NATO more than doubles size of rapid reaction force to 30,000 soldiers, 6 command centers to be set up in Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Baltic republics; Germany to send 1,700 troops to Poland, join NATO’s “Sober Strike” exercise, unprecedented deployment possibly first since WW2-era Nazi occupation, bound to agitate Polish nationalists; Russian DM Shoigu plans visit to leftist allies in Caribbean, negotiate with Cuba, Venezuela, Nicaragua on weapons sales, naval maintenance/resupply sites, refueling Russian nuclear bombers on “global patrol missions”; Russian Tu-160s landed in Caracas, Managua in 2008, 2013; President Ortega (possibly anticipating revenue from Chinese-built Nicaragua Canal) submits order for Russian-made MiG-29s, failed Soviet warplane deal during first Sandinista regime (1979-1990) worried Reagan Admin

EU File: Greece’s leftist-led, anti-austerity government receives vote of confidence in parliament ahead of emergency meeting with Eurozone finance ministers; Germany rejects new debt accord as PM Tsipras’ right-wing coalition partner, DM Kammenos hints Athens may accept bailout from Moscow after all: “[I]f there is no deal . . . and if we see that Germany remains rigid and wants to blow apart Europe . . . [then] Plan B is to get funding from another source. It could the United States at best, it could be Russia, it could be China . . .”; Russian FM Lavrov butters up the Greeks: “We appreciate the stance of the Greek government [vis-à-vis European Union]”; Syriza’s internal “Communist Tendency” praises Tsipras for standing up to EU, Berlin: “SYRIZA’s Communists welcome the government’s intentions not to give in to the provocative ultimatums of Germany, and to the ECB’s attempt to suffocate the Greek banking system”; Tsipras decides to privatize Port of Piraeus after sending mixed signals, Beijing-owned COSCO front-runner to buy state’s 67% stake in facility; Kremlin clinches military cooperation deal with bankrupt Cyprus, Nicosia opens ports and air bases to Russian Air Force, Navy

WW4 File: UKRAINE-RUSSIA WAR: Weeks of heavy fighting between Ukrainian troops and Donbass rebels, Russian regulars prompt evacuation of city of Vuhlehirsk, railway hub Debaltseve, 80% of civilians flee, dead bodies lying in the streets; Tymchuk: Russian Ground Forces deploy 1,200 troops, 45 tanks to prosecute siege of Debaltseve; PM Yatsenyuk at joint press conference with US State Secretary Kerry in Kiev: “We are fighting against rebels, we are fighting against Russian regular troops. It is without doubt that Russia keeps its troops in Donbas. It is rather difficult to buy Russian tanks and missile batteries in Donbas stores”; ATO spokesman reports “Russian terrorist forces” also preparing to re-attack strategic port city of Mariupol: Merkel, Hollande travel to Moscow on peace mission, hold talks with Putin on Feb. 6, attend Munich Security Conference on Sat., unable to guarantee success of peace initiative for Ukraine’s Donbass

EU File: Global stock markets “falter” as Greece’s new leftist government adheres to anti-austerity program, ECB withdraws “key borrowing option” for Greek banks; PM Tsipras converses by phone with Putin, discusses economic, energy cooperation, Ukraine crisis, Russian dictator invites Syriza leader to Moscow; right-wing DM, coalition partner Kammenos assures NATO allies Athens “committed” to military alliance in spite of friendly “political” relations with Moscow, “[W]e have [Russian] military equipment. We discussed that with the [NATO] secretary general. We will continue to source spare parts so that we are able to keep this equipment . . .”; Merkel digs in heels over Greek sovereign debt, while Germany’s “ex”-communist Left Party urges EU to talk reduction with Athens; Golden Dawn fuehrer Michaloliakos, 71 followers to stand trial on charges related to 2013 murder of anti-racist musician, membership in “criminal group,” unclear whether neo-Nazis to be permitted to take seats in Greek parliament prior to court date

EU File: Greece’s new leftist PM rejects Moscow’s overtures for financial bailout (for now), carries out first official foreign visit to Greek-speaking Cyprus, meets center-right President Anastasiades, communist predecessor Christofias; Tsipras warns Turkey against “undermining” peace talks for divided island, Ankara bolstered occupational troops from 36,000 to 43,000 in 2013, but withdrew 100 tanks, leaving 349; Syriza leader urges Athens, Nicosia to establish “bridge of peace and cooperation” between EU, Russia, both countries side with Serbia in rejecting Kosovo independence; Russia seeks military base in Cyprus (even though British Forces Cyprus stationed at Dhekelia, Akrotiri since 1960), Anastasiades slated for state visit to Moscow in late Feb.; Syriza deputy minister Katrougkalos, former MEP vows to sink EU-USA trade pact, ruling coalition partner ANEL shares same hostility towards Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership; Golden Dawn wins third place in Jan. 25 election even though party boss, six MPs on remand, neo-Nazis release statement, back Tsipras government, oppose privatizations, EU’s anti-Russia sanctions; 1000s of anti-fascists gather in Athens, rally against Greek ultranationalists