What's good (and bad ) about Russia?

Bruce

Well-Known Member
#21
Big news about the russians taking over ukrainian navy ships , as they tried to go through the passage between the crimea and russia. Whats going on willedoo? is there going to be a war or is the ukraine going to lose out? or what?
 

willedoo

Well-Known Member
#22
I've been following it Bruce, but it's a bit early to figure it all out.

Interestingly enough, yesterday I listened to ABC radio interviewing a professor from one of our bigger universities (Sydney, I think). He specializes in Russian/Ukrainian geopolitics. He gave a few possible reasons behind it. One scenario he gave was that as Ukrainian President Poroshenko is up for election on March 31st., he was doing this as an excuse to impose martial law. Poroshenko's approval ratings have been plummeting and it's almost a given he would lose the election under normal conditions.

The interview with the professor was a few hours before Poroshenko did just that, applied to the Parliament to introduce martial law. As the professor said, under martial law, all political electioneering is banned. Poroshenko has imposed martial law on all Ukrainian regions bordering Russia, Belorussia (Belarus), and Moldova. One point to make is that Belorussians are almost defacto Russians in their loyalties. I'd suggest opening up Google maps and zoom in on the region to get a better understanding. As you would see, Belarus is nowhere near any of the troubled regions, and extends all the way to western Ukraine, bordering on Poland. Why would he do that?

The reason is simple when you look at the map. There is always an ethnic buffer zone on the borders, eg. ethnic Russians live in the Ukrainian border regions. Just like ethnic Poles live in Ukraine and Ukrainians in Poland. Starting with the map on the top left section of Ukraine is Belarus at the intersection of the Poland/Ukraine/Belorussian border. So you have Belorussians (Russian sympathies), moving around to to the Kharkov region (slightly more Ukrainians than Russians), then down to the Donbass regions where the civil war was (majority ethnic Russian), then around the Azov Sea coastline (slightly bigger Ukrainian %), across the top of Crimea to the Odessa region (slightly bigger Ukrainian %), then up the Moldovan border. The eastern sector of Moldova (Transnitria) is an ethnic Russian, semi-autonomous region of Moldova, but the same people spread over into Ukraine.

The common thread here is that all the regions under martial law have either majority ethnic Russians, of close to it. They would nearly all vote against Poroshenko. Bearing in mind, after the 2014 coup, the first legislation introduced by Poroshenko's government was to ban the use of the Russian language in Ukraine, which is spoken by about 30% of the population. So that's a lot of votes, and Poroshenko has effectively shut down the opposition's election campaigns in those regions. If Poroshenko is a well meaning dude, why has he imposed martial law all the way over in the west on the Polish border?

On today's news, he's wound back the original 60 day martial law to 30 days to keep NATO happy, and promised them it has nothing to do with the election. His next move will be to back down or engineer a false flag to keep extending martial law out to the election date. Under martial law, he can also postpone elections. It's quite different from here, if we had the case of an unpopular PM desperately trying to keep his job. In Ukraine, and possibly Russia as well, a powerful group of oligarchs surround that person, so it's a group thing and not an individual attempt at survival. So he risks, not only losing his position, but probably getting bumped off by rivals as well. Bumped off as in bumped off the planet. Basically he needs a lot of drama and anti-Russian sentiment in his country between now and March, to retain his job, and that of his mates.

Another thing to consider is that even post coup, and all during the Donbass conflict that killed 10,000 people, martial law was never declared in Ukraine. I might be biased, but I smell a rat. Tonight, the Ukrainian UN rep, speaking after the security council meeting that Putin called for, said they have so called intelligence that Russian ground troops are about to invade Ukraine and seize Mariupol and Berdyansk. If that happens without good reason, I'll suck a boil and take back everything I've ever said in Russia's defence. It's bordering on delusional.

As far as the ships go, that's another thing. Russia claims they had every right to do it based on international maritime law. Russia and Ukraine signed a treaty years ago (2004, I think) guaranteeing freedom of navigation through the Kerch Strait. But neither side could just sail through as authority rested with the Kerch Port Authority. You still had to have all the paperwork, approval etc., and be up for inspections, the usual stamping of papers etc..
That prorocol was in place when Ukraine controlled Crimea, and now that Russia does, the Kerch Port Authority stills runs it. The reason for the treaty was that as the two peninsulas are so close, their maritime boundaries overlapped. Since the Crimean re-unification in 2014, Russia claims the Crimean side of the Kerch straight as their waters, meaning in their eyes, Ukrainian vessels are transiting through solely Russian waters to go through the straight.

Ukraine said that they informed Russia they would be sailing through the straight. Russia says they did not. The fact remains that the Ukrainian ships attempted to transit the straight in a non conventional, possibly provocative way. Look at it this way, those ships would no doubt regularly transit the straight with all the correct paperwork and approvals. The Russian Navy and Coast guard would regularly let them through. If the Ukrainian Navy crews knew that they had approval to transit, why would they take evasive maneuvers and try to do a runner when the Russian Coast Guard approached them? Normally, a Navy Crew who had all the papers and approvals, when approached by the Coast Guard, would stop. The fact that they tried to do a runner suggests strongly that the whole thing was a possible political setup, or a bit fishy at least.

The sticking point is that Russia considers both sides of the straight to be their territorial waters, and most of the international community consider the Crimean side to be Ukrainian waters. Hypothetically, if the international community recognized the waters as Russian, then the Russian Navy and CG behaved exactly as ours would if Indonesian or PNG naval vessels entered Sydney Harbour without permission, and then tried to avoid interception. The Russian Navy and Coast Guard did their job, just as our's would. If anything is wrong, it would only be their interpretation of who owns the waters.
 
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willedoo

Well-Known Member
#24
And here's one for the conspiracy theorists.

Petro Poroshenko doesn't take a cr*p without American permission. So is the good ol' unintelligence agency poking him along on this . Maybe not.

He's made billions from selling chocolate and obviously a good enough businessman, but politically, he's as thick as two short planks. It's questionable whether he's got the brains or imagination to think this one up on his own. But combined with his fellow stooges, maybe they could figure it out between them without American help. I can't remember who it was in the US government who described him as a 'useful idiot', but it's a fair description.

I'd be very sceptical of this report about a detained Ukrainian officer fessing up. More likely Sputniknews propaganda.
Detained Ukrainian Naval Officer Admits Provocative Actions in Kerch Strait
 
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willedoo

Well-Known Member
#25
On the subject of the Naval incident, I watched the two UN Security Council meetings. The first was called by Russia, and their agenda was voted down, as they really only have China on their side in the council.

The second was called on behalf of Ukraine and the agenda was passed. They gave the Russian rep a hard time, and all banged on about their perception of Crimea being illegally annexed by Russia. The Russian UN Security Council rep was trying to remind them that they were there to discuss the Naval incident, but as usual they wouldn't listen to him. A lady ( I'm not sure what country she represented ) made a statement calling on Russia to uphold the Minsk agreements.

The Russian rep was gobsmacked and asked her if she'd ever read the Minsk agreements, or had any clue what they were about. The Minsk agreements cover the cease fire in the Donbass and have no mention or relativity to Crimea. It's scary to think that UN representatives of certain countries are so incompetent and ignorant of simple, easily verifiable facts and yet get up on the world stage and proceed to espouse verbal diarrhoea.
I think the reason they do it is either inherent stupidity and incompetence, or the fact that they know most of the world's baa lambs will believe anything they're told if it fits the status quo narrative. We're fully in the age of illusion these days.
 
#26
Fellas - I know this is about Russia, but somehow a discussion about the Aussie anthem worked its way into the thread and a lot don't like it it appears.. And the sentiment is that most people only know the first verse.. which meansit is more or lress derided by the public.

Well, the favourite unofficial anthem, on that basis would seem to be on the same boat - hated by most because they don't bluddy well know the words to the whole song.. Your 'onnah - I rest my case:

Of course, there aren't too many Aussies who hate the song, but the silence in the second verse is deafening...
 

Bruce

Well-Known Member
#27
Malcolm Fraser, Liberal PM at the time, wanted Waltzing Matilda and I agreed with him. Ampol, a fuel company of the day, proposed some new words which I didn't like, but they did and spent money advertising their version which at least kept the tune.
Gosh, I would be proud to have as my anthem a real song about a suicidal sheep-thief instead of the jingoistic rubbish that is normal.
But it was put to a democratic vote and that is why we have the existing anthem, which I reckon is terribly unscientific and an exhortation to overpopulate.
 

nomadpete

Well-Known Member
#29
"Golden soil" might be a rather poor description of our plentiful red desert sand, which covers about 80% of the continent.

And "wealth for toil" could describe our mining industry. Although I doubt that much real wealth from mining filters down to the toiling workers.
 

Bruce

Well-Known Member
#30
A young farmer who won a study tour to the Ukraine said how over there they had 1 metre of topsoil and 1 metre of rainfall. Here we have 100mm of topsoil and grow wheat with 300mm of rainfall. And our topsoil is, on average, 5 cycles of soil to sedimentary rock to soil etc. No wonder the soil needs phosphorous , and Australia imports 80,000 tonnes a year of the stuff despite mining some ourselves. "golden soil...bullsh#t
 

Yenn

Well-Known Member
#31
"Usefull idiot" Who does that bring to mind? Just about any pro USA national leader. For example Saddam Hussein, John Howard, all the British PMs.
I hadn't ever thought to find out the full text of our National Anthem. Now I am just glad that it doesn't get sung in full. We are Australian would be far better and in fact the ABC is using it in their self promoting advertising. Waltzing Matilda is still the most accepted Australian song. Go overseas and when the locals find out you are Australian they will hum the tune.
 

willedoo

Well-Known Member
#33
Tourism is doing well in Saint Petersburg, with 7.2 million tourists visiting last year.

This year, Saint Petersburg has been named the world’s leading cultural city destination for the third consecutive year, in the WTA World Travel Awards. In 2015, the WTA panel awarded the northern city the title of Europe’s leading destination. Earlier this year, the city won the title of Europe’s best cruise destination.
 

willedoo

Well-Known Member
#34
This post is a comparison between the Russian Federation and Australia in modern times. Life in the Russian cities and major urban centres is in contrast to the lives of those in regional areas, without a doubt.

This is a clip of a concert last year, and if you can suffer through it, you'll see the camera at times pan around the crowd and up into the wings. It's a crowd of thousands comparable to any major concerts in Sydney or Melbourne. Most Russians living in regional areas could probably never afford to travel to Moscow to see a concert like this, just like many Australians living in towns like Cunnamulla or Thargomindah would never get the opportunity to attend a major concert in Sydney or Melbourne. There are also many people living in Moscow who could never afford a ticket to a concert like this, but as a comparison, in all our major cities, we have homeless people living on the streets, and some who rummage through rubbish bins for food.




 
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Bruce

Well-Known Member
#35
The story about how aborigines became officially people in Australia has to do with the invasion of Hungary by Russia about 1954.
All of America's allies took turns at denouncing the Russians in the UN. But the Russians were ready for Australia, and they compared, in detail, the aborigines with anything similar in the soviet union. Remember that in Australia, aborigine were not citizens.
It was so effective, it bluntened the whole attack on Russia. Australia was in shame.
 

willedoo

Well-Known Member
#36
One thing for sure, RF President Putin is a skilled poker player in the political sense. He's heavily into making pointed gestures to send a message, and is at least the equal of his American rivals in that regard.

There's been rumblings for a while now about possible US intervention in Venezuela, and Maduro is at least smart enough to realize that his only hope for survival is with America's rivals, China and Russia. Last week Maduro visited Putin in Moscow seeking help. Russia is looking at a 6 billion investment in mining and energy in Venezuela and has agreed to re-schedule Venezuela's existing 6 billion dollar debt to Moscow. Turkish President Erdogan has also visited Venezuela last week and the two nations agreed to unspecified agreements in gold mining and energy production.

So yesterday, two Tu-160 strategic bombers along with other Russian aircraft and personnel landed in Venezuela in a basic 'we've got your back' type of exercise. It will get a few eyebrows twitching in Washington and the Pentagon. Sending strategic nuclear bombers to Venezuela on a good will tour is no small message. It looks like Vladimir is sending the message to the Americans to leave Venezuela alone.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo denounced the deployment late on Monday.

“The Russian and Venezuelan people should see this for what it is: two corrupt governments squandering public funds, and squelching liberty and freedom while their people suffer,” he said on Twitter.

That quote reminds me of another well known nation.


Russian Tu-160 strategic bombers land in Venezuela after 10,000km transatlantic flight (VIDEO)
 
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willedoo

Well-Known Member
#38
It was announced Friday that the Crimean border fence has been completed. I'm not sure how the exact border was determined, but I'd guess it's based on the original Russian Soviet Socialist Republic border. Looks like a wind farm on the Ukrainian side of the fence.



 
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facthunter

Well-Known Member
#39
Putin must be BAD if Toney wants to $#!rtfront him. He (Vlad) must have been really worried too as he had a great big warship out off the coast at the G20, G7or whatever In Brisbane.. I'm really glad we have people who can take it to Putin. I'm so proud my heart beats like its going to explode. Re National Anthems. Most of them are laughable and barely fit for home consumption.
Perhaps the Ruskies don't smile much as they have bad teeth (The older ones) but they would give you their last crumbs from what I've seen. I met one chain smoking guy on an Antonov Giant Freighter at Avalon in the early 90's and he invited myself and a mate up into the cockpit where we sat and fiddled with familiar looking stuff but with NO word of English to see anywhere. There's no Russian in the cockpits of plane s I flew either. It's another world that gets somewhat bullied and rarely accommodated making Putins appearance of being a strong leader seem more necessary, and probably keeping him in power. He knows how to play it., being KGB trained. Nev
 

willedoo

Well-Known Member
#40
Nev, we've got a Polish LiM (MiG-15) 2 seater at the museum and it's a bit tricky. Half the gauges are in Russian and the other half Polish. It wouldn't be too hard for the Polish pilots to learn the Russian words though. Just the gauge names, altitude, pressure etc., the usual stuff. It's the Polish I have trouble with, I can read the Russian ones ok, but the metrics can be confusing.The older artificial horizon gauges were unusual, blue on the bottom and brown on top. Not very intuitive.
 
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