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Is Ukraine about to have a war?

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Is Ukraine about to have a war?

Old 31st Mar 2022, 09:31
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From The Guardian live feed a few minutes ago:11m ago09:18
Kim Willsher

Russian soldiers are said to be leaving the Chernobyl area and moving into Belarus with some reports suggesting soldiers are being bused to a special medical facility with acute radiation sickness after driving tanks through the “dead zone” around the nuclear plant and - even more astonishingly - digging trenches there.

If confirmed, this suggests a remarkable level of either ignorance of what happened at Chernobyl on 26 April 1986 when the nuclear plant’s Reactor 4 exploded after an experiment went wrong, or criminal recklessness.

Ukrainians who work at the plant have described it as a “suicide mission” as a convoy of Russians wearing no protective clothing or masks, rolled through the “Red Forest” so named because the tops of the pine trees around the nuclear plant glowed red from the radiation they absorbed after the catastrophe.

The contaminated trees were later dug up and buried, but seeds from them were taken and grown to see what effect the radiation had on them. When I visited in 1990, scientists at the Chernobyl Research Centre showed me the result: saplings, many with bizarre mutations, some with needles growing backwards. Scientists estimated the contaminated area would not be safe for 24,000 years, give or take a thousand.

Today, tourists can visit around the area, but only with a permit and with official tour guides who have Geiger counters and know where to go. There are still many radioactive ‘hot-spots’ and no go areas.

It is possible the Russian troops did not know of the danger. On the day after the disaster, it was the sixth item on the Soviet news and locals were kept in the dark as radiation rained down on them. In 2019, when the Chernobyl mini-series was broadcast, Vladimir Putin dismissed it as American misinformation and said Russia would make its own “version” of the tragedy blaming the CIA.

As I wrote then, like radiation, Kremlin propaganda has a long half-life.
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 09:43
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Originally Posted by Asturias56
  • Ukraine agreeing not to join NATO and to adopt a bloc-free status;
  • Ukraine agreeing not to acquire or develop nuclear weapons and weapons of mass destruction;
  • Ukraine agreeing not to deploy foreign military bases and contingents;
  • and Ukraine agreeing to hold military drills only with the consent of guarantor states, including Russia.
Lots of sticking points here from Ukraine's perspective, hence why it is being reported that Ukraine has not agreed to these (more wishful thinking from Moscow).

Frankly I don't think Russia is in a position to dictate terms to Ukraine, especially as the latter will ultimately have a say on when sanctions are lifted. The sooner they realise that the better.
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 09:49
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Originally Posted by campbeex
It is possible the Russian troops did not know of the danger. On the day after the disaster, it was the sixth item on the Soviet news and locals were kept in the dark as radiation rained down on them. In 2019, when the Chernobyl mini-series was broadcast, Vladimir Putin dismissed it as American misinformation and said Russia would make its own “version” of the tragedy blaming the CIA.
A more plausible explanation is that, given the Ukrainians didn't shell the area for obvious reasons, the Russians felt it was a good area in which to stay put and attempt to regroup.

The thing about radiation poisoning is that its effects could be mistaken for other illnesses. Given the troops have been in the field for several months or more, I'm sure all kinds of bugs are doing the rounds.
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 10:14
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Maybe they were after spares



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Old 31st Mar 2022, 10:44
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Errrrrr......... Well, what can one say.

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Old 31st Mar 2022, 10:49
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 12:23
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Russian armour seen moving through Belarus towards Russia, possibly for redeployment south.


one less to bother about

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Old 31st Mar 2022, 12:26
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Where's that guy who picks up the mines and moves them safely into the forest when you want him!
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 12:34
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More on the Chernobyl farce..

LONDON, March 28 (Reuters) - Russian soldiers who seized the site of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster drove their armoured vehicles without radiation protection through a highly toxic zone called the "Red Forest", kicking up clouds of radioactive dust, workers at the site said.

The two sources said soldiers in the convoy did not use any anti-radiation gear. The second Chernobyl employee said that was "suicidal" for the soldiers because the radioactive dust they inhaled was likely to cause internal radiation in their bodies.

Ukraine's state nuclear inspectorate said on Feb. 25 there had been an increase in radiation levels at Chernobyl as a result of heavy military vehicles disturbing the soil. But until now, details of exactly what happened had not emerged.

The two Ukrainian workers who spoke to Reuters were on duty when Russian tanks entered Chernobyl on Feb. 24 and took control of the site, where staff are still responsible for the safe storage of spent nuclear fuel and supervising the concrete-encased remains of the reactor that blew up in 1986.

Both men said they had witnessed Russian tanks and other armoured vehicles moving through the Red Forest, which is the most radioactively contaminated part of the zone around Chernobyl, around 100 km (65 miles) north of Kyiv.

The regular soldiers one of the workers spoke to when they worked alongside them in the facility had not heard about the explosion, he said.

Asked to comment on the accounts from Chernobyl staff, Russia's defence ministry did not respond.

The Russian military said after capturing the plant that radiation was within normal levels and their actions prevented possible "nuclear provocations" by Ukrainian nationalists. Russia has previously denied that its forces have put nuclear facilities inside Ukraine at risk.

OFF LIMITS

The site got its name when dozens of square kilometres of pine trees turned red after absorbing radiation from the 1986 explosion, one of the world's worst nuclear disasters.

A vast area around Chernobyl is off limits to anyone who does not work there or have special permission, but the Red Forest is considered so highly contaminated that even the nuclear plant workers are not allowed to go there.

The Russian military convoy went through the zone, the two employees said. One of them said it used an abandoned road.

"A big convoy of military vehicles drove along a road right behind our facility and this road goes past the Red Forest," said one of the sources.

"The convoy kicked up a big column of dust. Many radiation safety sensors showed exceeded levels," he said.

Valery Seida, acting general director of the Chernobyl plant, was not there at the time and did not witness the Russian convoy going into the Red Forest, but he said he was told by witnesses that Russian military vehicles drove everywhere around the exclusion zone and could have passed the Red Forest.

"Nobody goes there ... for God's sake. There is no one there," Seida told Reuters.

He said workers at the plant told the Russian service personnel they should be cautious about radiation, but he knew of no evidence that they paid attention.

"They drove wherever they needed to," Seida said.

After the Russian troops arrived, the two plant employees worked for almost a month along with colleagues until they were allowed to go home last week when Russian commanders allowed replacements for some of the staff to be sent in. read more

Reuters could not independently verify their accounts.

They were interviewed by phone on Friday on condition of anonymity because they feared for their safety. The next day Russian forces seized the town Slavutych near Chernobyl, where most plant workers live. read more

Seida and the mayor of Slavutych said on Monday that Russian forces had now left the town. read more

RADIATION RISE

Reuters was not able to independently establish what the radiation levels were for people in the immediate proximity of the Russian convoy that entered the Red Forest.

Ukraine's State Agency of Management the Exclusion Zone said on Feb. 27 that the last record it had on a sensor near nuclear waste storage facilities, before it lost control over the monitoring system, showed that the absorbed dose of radiation was seven times higher than normal.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said on Feb. 25 that radiation levels at the Chernobyl site reached 9.46 microsieverts per hour but remained "within an operating range" recorded in the exclusion zone from the moment of its creation and posed no threat to the general population.

The safe levels, by IAEA standards listed on the agency's official website, are up to 1 millisievert per year for the general population and 20 millisievert per year for those who deal with radiation professionally - where 1 millisievert is equal to 1,000 microsieverts.

On March 9, the IAEA said it stopped receiving monitoring data from the Chernobyl site. It gave no response on Monday to the workers' allegations.

The Chernobyl exclusion zone is still considered by Ukrainian authorities to be dangerous. Entering the disaster site without permission is a crime under Ukrainian law.

In the weeks the two plant employees were sharing the complex with Russian troops, they also said they saw none of them using any gear that would protect them from radiation.

Specialists from the Russian military who are trained in dealing with radiation did not arrive at the site until about a week after Russian troops arrived, the workers said. They said the Russian specialists did not wear protective gear either.

One of the employees said he had spoken to some of the rank-and-file Russian soldiers at the plant.

"When they were asked if they knew about the 1986 catastrophe, the explosion of the fourth block (of the Chernobyl plant), they did not have a clue. They had no idea what kind of a facility they were at," he said.

"We talked to regular soldiers. All we heard from them was 'It's critically important infrastructure'. That was it," the man said.

FORCE PREPAREDNESS

The accounts about Russian troops in Chernobyl chime with other evidence suggesting the invasion force sent into Ukraine was not fully prepared for what they encountered.

The Kremlin says that what it calls its special military operation in Ukraine is going to plan and is on schedule.

But Ukrainian officials and their Western allies say Russia's initial thrust deep into Ukrainian territory stalled after encountering logistics problems and facing stiffer-than-expected Ukrainian resistance.

Russia initially said only professional soldiers were sent in but reversed itself and said that conscripted men had been inadvertently deployed, with some of them taken prisoner. read more

Ukrainian intelligence has said Russian soldiers often use open radio frequencies or mobile phones to communicate among themselves, which means Kyiv's forces could eavesdrop on their conversations.

Video footage shared on social media in Ukraine showed multiple cases of Russian military vehicles that had no combat damage but which had been abandoned after breaking down or running out of fuel.

Washington assesses that Russia is suffering failure rates as high as 60% for some of the precision-guided missiles it is using to attack Ukraine, three U.S. officials with knowledge of the intelligence told Reuters last week. read more

https://www.reuters.com/world/europe...st-2022-03-28/

words fail me

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Old 31st Mar 2022, 13:05
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Possible Ukrainian medivac downed near Mariupol.

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Old 31st Mar 2022, 16:32
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CAA Safety notice re GPS jamming

https://publicapps.caa.co.uk/docs/33...ice2022002.pdf


This Safety Notice is issued to raise awareness and to advise Operators who may be impacted by the loss or degradation of GNSS signals associated with state activities pertaining to the security situation in Ukraine and elsewhere.
1.2 Eurocontrol’s Network of Analysts and open-source data reports indicate that since 24 February 2022, there are five key geographical areas where GNSS interference and/or jamming has intensified, namely:
• Kaliningrad region, surrounding Baltic sea and neighbouring States;
• Eastern Finland;
• The Black Sea;
• The Eastern Mediterranean area near Cyprus, Turkey, Lebanon, Syria and Israel; and
• Northern Iraq.
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 16:35
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Ukranian Military Oscars

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...ments-war.html

This really shows how the Ukranians are so far ahead in their media and propaganda presence.


Also from the Daily Mail.

Well, here come the new boys. Will they have enough uniforms and rifles for them ?

"President Vladimir Putin has ordered 134,500 more conscripts to join his army as Russia's forces continue to struggle to make significant gains in Ukraine.

The Russian despot signed a decree today ordering the new conscripts into the army as part of Russia's annual spring draft. Despite Moscow's struggles, the defence ministry claimed the call-up had nothing to do with the war in Ukraine. "
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 17:01
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Originally Posted by Tartiflette Fan
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...ments-war.html

This really shows how the Ukranians are so far ahead in their media and propaganda presence.


Also from the Daily Mail.

Well, here come the new boys. Will they have enough uniforms and rifles for them ?

"President Vladimir Putin has ordered 134,500 more conscripts to join his army as Russia's forces continue to struggle to make significant gains in Ukraine.

The Russian despot signed a decree today ordering the new conscripts into the army as part of Russia's annual spring draft. Despite Moscow's struggles, the defence ministry claimed the call-up had nothing to do with the war in Ukraine. "
Well technically that is correct I believe. April is one of the times they normally conscript. As to numbers - no idea if they are normal. Presumably this is also the time young Ivan should finish his national service and come home to Mum, Except that he won't of course, as he has either been "signed on" and is now officially a contract soldier, or he has been killed or wounded.
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 17:27
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Originally Posted by Ninthace
Well technically that is correct I believe. April is one of the times they normally conscript. As to numbers - no idea if they are normal. Presumably this is also the time young Ivan should finish his national service and come home to Mum,.
Well, although I didn't directly pose the question, I am wondering about the numbers. In all the discussions about the war I am certain that the number 900 000 has been quoted, but I don't recall if that was the Russian Army or total armed forces. In either case, it means that if the current class of recruits isn't discharged, then there is going to be an increase of over 10% in the army. Does anybody believe that any army could deal with that kind of influx over just three months ? This must mean further turmoil in the Russian Army at a time when they absolutely don't need it. On the other hand if the current conscripts are discharged, then there are going to be tens of thousands who will undoubtedly have heard from other recruits/transfers/rumours about the war, or actually been there themselves. They will spread out across Russia and obviously tell their families and friends. Whatever truth they choose to tell will undoubtedly be believed 100% and it probably won't match the Kremlin line.

This could potentially start an upsurge of public resentment against Putin/the war.
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 17:57
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Originally Posted by Tartiflette Fan
Well, although I didn't directly pose the question, I am wondering about the numbers. In all the discussions about the war I am certain that the number 900 000 has been quoted, but I don't recall if that was the Russian Army or total armed forces. In either case, it means that if the current class of recruits isn't discharged, then there is going to be an increase of over 10% in the army. Does anybody believe that any army could deal with that kind of influx over just three months ? This must mean further turmoil in the Russian Army at a time when they absolutely don't need it. On the other hand if the current conscripts are discharged, then there are going to be tens of thousands who will undoubtedly have heard from other recruits/transfers/rumours about the war, or actually been there themselves. They will spread out across Russia and obviously tell their families and friends. Whatever truth they choose to tell will undoubtedly be believed 100% and it probably won't match the Kremlin line.

This could potentially start an upsurge of public resentment against Putin/the war.
I doubt if any the current batch of conscripts that are serving in Ukraine will be discharged as they do not officially exist. Early on in the war, IIRC, Putin claimed that no conscripts were serving in Ukraine, so if they are there, they are by definition no longer conscripts. Those that still survive have either been sent back to Mother Russia or they have been signed on as contract soldiers, whether they know it or not. You can decide which is the most likely.
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 18:06
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The more I see of late with suspect nuclear armed aircraft incursion into Sweden and the demanding Rubbles for fuel, one is getting the feeling he wants the west to become embroiled because he cannot sell his Western / NATO narrative at the moment to the Russian people.
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 18:14
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Originally Posted by Tartiflette Fan
Well, although I didn't directly pose the question, I am wondering about the numbers. In all the discussions about the war I am certain that the number 900 000 has been quoted, but I don't recall if that was the Russian Army or total armed forces. In either case, it means that if the current class of recruits isn't discharged, then there is going to be an increase of over 10% in the army. Does anybody believe that any army could deal with that kind of influx over just three months ? This must mean further turmoil in the Russian Army at a time when they absolutely don't need it. On the other hand if the current conscripts are discharged, then there are going to be tens of thousands who will undoubtedly have heard from other recruits/transfers/rumours about the war, or actually been there themselves. They will spread out across Russia and obviously tell their families and friends. Whatever truth they choose to tell will undoubtedly be believed 100% and it probably won't match the Kremlin line.

This could potentially start an upsurge of public resentment against Putin/the war.

Some interesting background information here regarding Russian conscripts, numbers and the "rules" of their deployment.

https://www.understandingwar.org/bac...d-mobilization

The current intake numbers seem to be broadly consistent with previous years.

I genuinely hope that your last statement re upsurge of public resentment proves to be correct

Last edited by macmp419; 31st Mar 2022 at 18:24.
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 20:05
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Russia has apparently abandoned Hostomel airport.

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Old 31st Mar 2022, 20:18
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U.K. to give Ukraine long range artillery and armoured vehicles.



Foxhounds or Landrovers?

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/art...vacuation.html
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Old 31st Mar 2022, 22:22
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As90 would be vastly more useful. Krab variant even more so.
UK ordered the K2 as a replacent last week.
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