Omnibus Russia Ukraine crisis

spaminator

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Oct 26, 2009
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By the way. . .

Eleven senators voted against aid to Ukraine. They are:

Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee
John Boozman of Arkansas
Mike Braun of Indiana
Mike Crapo of Idaho
Bill Hagerty of Tennessee
Josh Hawley of Missouri
Mike Lee of Utah
Cynthia Lummis of Wyoming
Roger Marshall of Kansas
Rand Paul of Kentucky
Tommy Tuberville of Alabama

Republicans, every one.
perhaps they don't have enough mansions. ;)
 

The_Foxer

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Aug 9, 2022
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Looking out for taxpayer's money. It is time Europe stood up for itself.
Well... not entirely unreasonable. Although i think it's safe to say the russians are also a US problem, and being able to weaken them so inexpensively is not a bad deal for taxpayers either,
 
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spaminator

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Russians tortured Ukrainian detainees, often to death: Medic
Author of the article:Associated Press
Associated Press
Ellen Knickmeyer
Publishing date:Sep 15, 2022 • 16 hours ago • 2 minute read • Join the conversation

WASHINGTON — A life-saving Ukrainian volunteer medic captured by Russian forces during their deadly siege of the port city of Mariupol told U.S. lawmakers Thursday how Russians routinely tortured her and others, killing many detainees, in her most detailed public account of her months in captivity.


Yuliia Paievska, detained in Mariupol in March and held by Russian and pro-Russian forces for three months, spoke to lawmakers with the Helsinki Commission, a government agency created in part to promote compliance with human rights internationally.


Known to Ukrainians by the nickname Taira, Paievska became a popular figure in her home country. Her care of the wounded during the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war received global attention after her bodycam footage was provided to The Associated Press.

“Do you know why we do this to you?” a Russian asked Paievska as he tortured her, she recounted to the commission. She told the panel her answer to him: “Because you can.”

A 7-year-old boy died in her lap because she had none of the medical gear she needed to treat him, she said.


Russian captors made Ukrainian prisoners remove their clothes before the Russians set to bloodying and tormenting them, she said. Prisoners lingered in pain, screaming, for weeks before dying.

“Then in this torment of hell, the only things they feel before death is abuse and additional pain,” she said.

Paievska had been one of thousands of Ukrainians believed to have been taken prisoner by Russian forces. Mariupol’s mayor said that 10,000 people from his city alone disappeared during what was the monthslong Russian siege of that city. It fell to Russians in April, with the city all but destroyed by Russian bombardment, and with countless dead.

The Geneva Conventions single out medics, both military and civilian, for protection “in all circumstance. ” Sen. Ben Cardin, a Maryland Democrat and co-chair of the Helsinki Commission underscored that the conditions she described for civilian and military detainees violated international law. Rep. Joe Wilson, R-S.C., called Russian President Vladimir Putin a war criminal.


Before she was captured, Paievska had recorded more than 256 gigabytes of harrowing bodycam footage showing her team’s efforts to save the wounded in the besieged city. She got the footage to Associated Press journalists, the last international team in Mariupol, on a tiny data card.

The journalists fled the city on March 15 with the card embedded inside a tampon, carrying it through 15 Russian checkpoints. The next day, Paievska was taken by pro-Russia forces.

Three months passed before she emerged on June 17, thin and haggard, her athlete’s body more than 10 kilograms (22 pounds) lighter from lack of nourishment and activity. She said the AP report that showed her caring for Russian and Ukrainian soldiers alike, along with civilians of Mariupol, was critical to her release.

Paievska previously had declined to speak to journalists about conditions in detention, only describing it broadly as hell. She swallowed heavily at times Thursday while testifying slowly in a mix of Ukrainian and halting English.

“It’s very unpleasant” to speak of what happened there, she said.
 

spaminator

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Ukraine's president says mass grave found in recaptured city
Author of the article:Associated Press
Associated Press
Vasilisa Stepanenko
Publishing date:Sep 15, 2022 • 6 hours ago • 4 minute read • Join the conversation

IZIUM, Ukraine — Ukrainian authorities found a mass burial site near a recaptured northeastern city previously occupied by Russian forces, President Volodymyr Zelenskyy announced Thursday night.


The grave was discovered close to Izium in the Kharkiv region.


“The necessary procedures have already begun there. More information — clear, verifiable information — should be available tomorrow,” Zelenskyy said in his nightly televised address.

Associated Press journalists saw the site Thursday in a forest outside Izium. Amid the trees were hundreds of graves with simple wooden crosses, most of them marked only with numbers. A larger grave bore a marker saying it contained the bodies of 17 Ukrainian soldiers.

Investigators with metal detectors were scanning the site for any hidden explosives.

Oleg Kotenko, an official with the Ukrainian ministry tasked with reintegrating occupied territories, said videos that Russian soldiers posted on social media indicated there were likely more than 17 bodies in the grave.


“We haven’t counted them yet, but I think there are more than 25 or even 30,” he said.

Izium resident Sergei Gorodko said that among the hundreds buried in individual graves were dozens of adults and children killed in a Russian airstrike on an apartment building.

He said he pulled some of them out of the rubble “with my own hands.”

Zelenskyy invoked the names of other Ukrainian cities where authorities said retreating Russian troops left behind mass graves of civilians and evidence of possible war crimes.

“Bucha, Mariupol, now, unfortunately, Izium. Russia leaves death everywhere. And it must be held accountable for it. The world must bring Russia to real responsibility for this war,” he said in the address.

Sergei Bolvinov, a senior investigator for Ukrainian police in the eastern Kharkiv region, told British TV broadcaster Sky News that a pit containing more than 440 bodies was discovered near Izium after Kyiv’s forces swept in. He described the grave as “one of the largest burial sites in any one liberated city.”


Some of the people buried in the pit were shot. Others died from artillery fire, mines or airstrikes. Many of the bodies have not been identified yet, Bolvinov said.

Russian forces left Izium and other parts of the Kharkiv region last week amid a stunning Ukrainian counteroffensive. On Wednesday, Zelenskyy made a rare trip outside the capital to watch the national flag being raised over Izium’s city hall.

Deputy Interior Minister Yevhen Enin said Thursday night that other evidence found after Kyiv’s sweeping advance into the Kharkiv region included multiple “torture chambers” where both Ukrainian citizens and foreigners were detained “in completely inhuman conditions.”

“We have already come across the exhumation of individual bodies, not only with traces of a violent death, but also of torture — cut off ears, etc. This is just the beginning,” Enin said in an interview with Ukraine’s Radio NV.


He claimed that among those held at one of the sites were students from an unspecified Asian country who were captured at a Russian checkpoint as they tried to leave for Ukrainian-controlled territory.

Enin did not specify where the students were held, although he named the small cities of Balakliya and Volchansk as two locations where torture chambers were found. His account could not be independently verified.

“All these traces of war crimes are now carefully documented by us. And we know from the experience of Bucha that the worst crimes can only be exposed over time,” Enin said, in a reference to a Kyiv suburb where the bodies of hundreds of civilians were discovered following the Russian army’s withdrawal from the area in March.


Earlier Thursday, Zelenskyy said that during the five months the Russians occupied the region, they “only destroyed, only deprived, only took away.”

“They left behind devastated villages; in some of them there is not a single undamaged house. The occupiers turned schools into garbage dumps and churches — shattered, literally turned into toilets.”

In other developments Thursday, Zelenskyy worked to add political momentum to Ukraine’s recent military gains, while missile strikes that caused flooding near his hometown demonstrated Moscow’s determination to reclaim the battlefield advantage.

A week after the Ukrainian counteroffensive, Zelenskyy met with European Union chief Ursula von der Leyen during her third wartime visit to Kyiv. Von der Leyen publicly conveyed the wholehearted support of the 27-nation bloc and wore an outfit in Ukraine’s national colors.


“It’s absolutely vital and necessary to support Ukraine with the military equipment they need to defend themselves. And they have proven that they are able to do this, if they are well equipped,” she said.

Air raid sirens blared twice in Kyiv during von der Leyen’s meeting with Zelenskyy, a reminder that Russia has long-range weapons that can reach any location in Ukraine even though the capital has been spared attacks in recent weeks.

Ukrainian officials said Russian missiles late Wednesday struck a reservoir dam near Kryvyi Rih, Zelenskyy’s birthplace and the largest city in central Ukraine. The strikes flooded over 100 homes.

Russian military bloggers said the attack was intended to flood areas downstream where Ukrainian forces made inroads as part of their counteroffensive.

The head of the local government on Thursday reported a new attack on the dam and said emergency crews were working to prevent more water from escaping.

The first attack so close to his roots angered Zelenskyy, who said the strikes had no military value.

“In fact, hitting hundreds of thousands of ordinary civilians is another reason why Russia will lose,” he said.
 

spaminator

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Some unearthed bodies show torture signs
Author of the article:Associated Press
Associated Press
Vasilisa Stepanenko
Publishing date:Sep 16, 2022 • 23 hours ago • 5 minute read • 15 Comments

IZIUM, Ukraine — Ukrainian authorities began unearthing bodies Friday from a mass burial site in a forest recaptured from Russian forces, including some that they said bore signs of torture.


President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said the site was an example of “what the Russian occupation has led to.”


The site, which police said contained 445 graves, was discovered close to Izium after a rapid counteroffensive by Ukrainian forces retook the northeastern city and much of the Kharkiv region, breaking what had largely become a stalemate in the nearly seven-month war.

As the first bodies began to be pulled from the ground, the head of the Kharkiv prosecutor’s office, Oleksandr Filchakov, said some had their hands tied behind their back and ropes around their necks.

To bolster the offensive, the Biden administration announced another $600 million package of military aid Thursday for Ukraine, including more of the weaponry that has helped its troops seize the momentum.


Associated Press journalists who visited the burial site Thursday saw graves amid the pine trees, marked with simple wooden crosses. Most were numbered — and the count went into the 400s.


It was not clear who was buried under many of the dirt mounds or how all of them died, though witnesses and a Ukrainian investigator said some were shot and others were killed by artillery fire, mines or airstrikes.

The majority of the people buried were believed to be civilians, according to Ukrainian officials. But there was at least one mass grave, with a marker saying it contained the bodies of 17 Ukrainian soldiers.

In his nightly televised address on Thursday, Zelenskyy said “more information — clear, verifiable information” about the burial site was expected Friday.


“We want the world to know what is really happening and what the Russian occupation has led to,” he said.

Zelenskyy invoked the names of other Ukrainian cities where authorities said retreating Russian troops left behind mass graves of civilians.

“Bucha, Mariupol, now, unfortunately, Izium,” he said. “Russia leaves death everywhere. And it must be held accountable for it.”

The marking of individual graves with wooden crosses differed from some other burial sites discovered earlier in the war and seen by AP journalists — including some around Kyiv that are being investigated as sites of possible war crimes. Bodies found outside the capital in the town of Bucha and elsewhere after Russian forces withdrew had been dumped together and buried without markers.


Izium resident Sergei Gorodko said that among the hundreds buried in individual graves were dozens of adults and children killed in a Russian airstrike on an apartment building.

He said he pulled some of them out of the rubble “with my own hands.”

Sergei Bolvinov, a senior investigator for Ukrainian police, told British TV broadcaster Sky News that some of the people buried were shot, while others died from artillery fire, mines or airstrikes.

The mass grave of Ukrainian soldiers could contain more than the 17 bodies mentioned on its marker, said Oleg Kotenko, an official with the Ukrainian ministry tasked with reintegrating occupied territories.

“We haven’t counted them yet, but I think there are more than 25 or even 30,” he said, basing his estimate on video footage of the site that Russian soldiers posted on social media.


Kotenko also said that individual graves marked with crosses contained civilians who died. He said he expected the bodies would be exhumed for DNA testing.

Ukraine’s national police chief, Ihor Klymenko, said about 445 graves had so far been found at the site and that the “majority” were believed to be civilians.

The work to determine what caused their deaths “is not a one-week job. These bodies have been buried there since March,” he said.

Before exhumation work began, investigators with metal detectors scanned the site for any hidden explosives. Soldiers strung red and white plastic tape between the trees to mark off parts of the site. A few graves had wreaths of flowers hanging from the crosses, and some bore people’s names.


Izium was a key supply hub for Russian forces until they withdrew in recent days. Izium city councilor Maksym Strelnikov told reporters in an online briefing from an undisclosed location this week that hundreds of people had died during the fighting and after Russia seized the town in March. Many died from shelling and couldn’t get a proper burial, he said.

His claims could not be immediately verified, but similar scenes have played out in other cities captured by Russian forces, including Mariupol.

Strelnikov said an untold number of people also died from lack of proper health care since the “medical infrastructure of the city was destroyed.” Most of the city’s pre-war population of 47,000 fled to Ukrainian-held territories. Strelnikov said 10,000 residents remain in the ruined city — bracing for more hardship with winter coming and most infrastructure destroyed.


The national police chief, Klymenko, said “torture chambers” have also been found in recaptured towns and villages of the Kharkiv region. The claim could not be independently verified.

Prayers and counts of the days spent in detention were found on the walls of places that held people in Izium, he said.

Six Sri Lankan students who fell into Russian hands in Kupiansk, also in the Kharkiv region, have also said that they were held and mistreated, he said.

“They are scared, they were abused,” he said. They include “a woman who can barely speak” and two with torn toe nails.

Ukrainian Deputy Interior Minister Yevhen Enin said bodies exhumed in the region also showed “traces of a violent death, but also of torture — cut off ears, etc. This is just the beginning.”


“All these traces of war crimes are now carefully documented by us. And we know from the experience of Bucha that the worst crimes can only be exposed over time,” Enin said in an interview with Ukraine’s Radio NV.

The $600 million in additional U.S. military aid announced Thursday will include more of the same types of ammunition and equipment that have helped the Ukrainian counteroffensive beat back Russian forces in large portions of the east and in the south.

The aid was “carefully calibrated to make the most difference on the battlefield and strengthen Ukraine’s hand at the negotiating table when the time is right,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement.

— Associated Press journalist Hanna Arhirova in Kyiv contributed reporting.
 

The_Foxer

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Aug 9, 2022
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I read a number of first hand reports from Japanese people during ww2 discussing how they were being told things were going great and then slowly over time little things would pop up and they'd realize that something wasn't right but not wanting to believe there was a problem, eventually realizing that things were going very wrong. That 'wife' call reminds me of that.
 

Twin_Moose

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Twin Moose Creek