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Russian Invasion of Ukraine


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I don't feel sorry for Russia.  Russia had a revolution to overthrow the USSR, and less than 8 years later they put Putin in power.  Russia has the second most powerful military in the world and 1000+ nukes aimed at the US.  We need to keep in mind who the real victims are, and that is Ukraine. 

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I'm too angry at Abbott to even think about another country right now. I'm sure I'll get there though. 

Last week, I got in touch with a Ukrainian friend of mine from high school (who was an exchange student back then) and he was prepared to do whatever it took to defend his country.  I hope he comes ou

President Zelenskyi said his assassination attempt was thwarted with the help of info from Russia's FSB. I'm not sure I believe that but holy shit if that is true.

1 hour ago, Zathras said:

I don't feel sorry for Russia.  Russia had a revolution to overthrow the USSR, and less than 8 years later they put Putin in power.  Russia has the second most powerful military in the world and 1000+ nukes aimed at the US.  We need to keep in mind who the real victims are, and that is Ukraine. 

I agree with you, but one can feel for the Russian people without excusing the actions of the country. They still live in a country ruled by a dictator who has no problem murdering anyone who stands up to him, and that wasn’t super obvious 20+ years ago when he was first elected, in large part because the chaos after the USSR was horrible. 
 

We’ve seen it in our own country, where 50% of the country doesn’t agree with the elected president and is embarrassed by him, only in their case they might get killed for trying to change things.

Having said that, I 100% would rather Russians die in this war than any Ukrainian, and the Russians are going to have to do something about Putin. They’re the only ones who can. 

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This is the difference between a democracy like ours and something like what Russia has. The news is moderated and kind of different from what we get here where I am pretty sure Russians gets spoon fed news. For instance they've been telling Russians that they're using civilians as shields in the Ukraine. I honestly think some of the Russian army is holding back though because they most definitely should have been able to take over the major cities in days instead of this long prolonged horrible nonsense.

Now on to something else. Why weren't we like this in African countries as opposed to the outrage we see now for Ukraine? I think we know the answer but boy howdy does this make it uncomfortable.

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9 hours ago, Fozzie said:

I agree with you, but one can feel for the Russian people without excusing the actions of the country. They still live in a country ruled by a dictator who has no problem murdering anyone who stands up to him, and that wasn’t super obvious 20+ years ago when he was first elected, in large part because the chaos after the USSR was horrible. 
 

We’ve seen it in our own country, where 50% of the country doesn’t agree with the elected president and is embarrassed by him, only in their case they might get killed for trying to change things.

Having said that, I 100% would rather Russians die in this war than any Ukrainian, and the Russians are going to have to do something about Putin. They’re the only ones who can. 

I'll amend my last post a bit.  Of course, I do have sympathy for the innocent Russians who may be suffering.  However, I still fully support the sanctions.  A country deserves the government they elect, and they elected Putin.  I know fully well their elections are not like ours, but still, the Russian people selected Putin.  So the ultimate responsibility of Putin being in power is still Russia's.  

Besides, what is the alternative to sanctions? Do nothing?  Go to war instead? I don't see a lot of options there, and it seems to me the sanctions are the best way to stop Putin at this time, and to motivate the Russian people to hopefully do something that leads to removing Putin from power.   

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Just now, Zathras said:

I'll amend my last post a bit.  Of course, I do have sympathy for the innocent Russians who may be suffering.  However, I still fully support the sanctions.  A country deserves the government they elect, and they elected Putin.  I know fully well their elections are not like ours, but still, the Russian people selected Putin.  So the ultimate responsibility of Putin being in power is still Russia's.  

Besides, what is the alternative to sanctions? Do nothing?  Go to war instead? I don't see a lot of options there, and it seems to me the sanctions are the best way to stop Putin at this time, and to motivate the Russian people to hopefully do something that leads to removing Putin from power.   

Sanctions are definitely the answer, but we should also have more targeted sanctions. To clarify: I used the word also, meaning both. Every Russian billionaire, including Putin, should have all of their assets frozen. Their yachts should be locked down. Make it absolutely impossible for wealthy Russians to do anything outside of Russia, because they’re the ones who gain the most from Putin and support him the most, and they’re the most likely to do something.

The only good way out of this situation is Putin in a body bag, and I’m sure there are plenty of powerful Russians who realize that and are trying to figure out if they can do it and if they can seize control after.

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37 minutes ago, Ms. Spam said:

Now on to something else. Why weren't we like this in African countries as opposed to the outrage we see now for Ukraine? I think we know the answer but boy howdy does this make it uncomfortable.

What is your context, Spam?  When was the last time a superpower invaded an African country unprovoked, at least since the age of colonialism.   This is not to say that I don't have sympathy for what is going on in Africa but as I see it, the comparison is apples to oranges.

I think what is freaking everyone out about Ukraine is:

1.  A superpower invading Ukraine, which has no hope of winning the war by themselves

2. Russia is a nuclear power and we are unsure how far Putin is willing to go

3. The invasion was unprovoked but planned by Putin for quite some time.  Possibly since 2014 or even earlier.

4. This is the first land war in Europe since WW2

5.  The West has essentially forgotten about the Cold War, and this seems to be leading to another Cold War between Nato and Russia.  This is unsettling to Nato. 

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I think the European Union pushed through the Ukraine becoming a part of the EU so we we’ll see what will happen as an alliance with NATO may require someone to step in. 
 

A lot of sports sanctions and businesses pulling out of Russia right now but I dunno if it will effect Putin. It’s like they let that stuff go to long to reign him in or stop it. I definitely think Russians don’t want this but the collective Russian history has a bad reputation on dealing with stuff like this. 

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31 minutes ago, Ms. Spam said:

I think the European Union pushed through the Ukraine becoming a part of the EU

Nope, that didn't happen. It might, but it hasn't and it isn't likely to happen super quickly.

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1 hour ago, Fozzie said:

Sanctions are definitely the answer, but we should also have more targeted sanctions. To clarify: I used the word also, meaning both. Every Russian billionaire, including Putin, should have all of their assets frozen. Their yachts should be locked down. Make it absolutely impossible for wealthy Russians to do anything outside of Russia, because they’re the ones who gain the most from Putin and support him the most, and they’re the most likely to do something.

The only good way out of this situation is Putin in a body bag, and I’m sure there are plenty of powerful Russians who realize that and are trying to figure out if they can do it and if they can seize control after.

I agree 100% here. 

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2 hours ago, Fozzie said:

Nope, that didn't happen. It might, but it hasn't and it isn't likely to happen super quickly.

Yeah I don't think we will see Ukraine in the EU or NATO any time soon.  In fact, it remains to be seen if Ukraine will still exist as an independent country in a few weeks. 

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48 minutes ago, Zathras said:

Yeah I don't think we will see Ukraine in the EU or NATO any time soon.  In fact, it remains to be seen if Ukraine will still exist as an independent country in a few weeks. 

Even if they are in either soon, that has a very different meaning than what people are thinking. If Ukraine is in the EU in 5 years that’ll be super soon.

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29 minutes ago, Zathras said:

I think even that is optimistic.  One of the reasons Putin invaded was because he feared Ukraine would join NATO and/or EU. 

Oh, I don’t think it will happen, I’m just saying that Spam claiming the EU admitted Ukraine, or anyone expecting it to happen within days or weeks is fooling themselves. If it happens in 5 years, that would be super fast for the EU. 10 years is a better timeline for someone joining the EU. Not just a couple of days.

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Plus EU is an economic alliance, not a military one. Membership might fast track application to NATO but not necessarily because Ukraine's application for latter is impeded by the same reason its application for the former has so far been, namely corruption and grift. EU is already dealing with Greece's pre-membership imaginative economic housekeeping, it's a case of once bitten twice shy.

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Ukrainian air defence shot down a missile that was headed toward main railway station of the capital. The railway station was at the time full of people being evacuated from the city. I got to tell you, the whole "It's not the Russians, just Putin" argument loses steam when something like this happens. A point will come when European military powers will have to calculate whether the risk of atomic weapon reprisal is worth it just not have to watch this atrocity happening and losing our soul.

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I don't think there is any avenue for a Russian "win" here. If they win militarily and subdue Ukraine these sanctions will not be lifted and they will weaken considerably. If they can't win militarily they look totally weak. The worse things get for Putin the more you worry he does something disasterous but also the better chance someone does maybe try to take him out. I don't think thats the most likely outcome but its possible.

As I said I still think the most likely outcome is Putin accomplishes something he can claim at home as a victory which really isn't much of a victory. He agrees to end the aggression and we agree to lift the sanctions in exchange. Then he can claim to have achieved his goals and stood up to the sanctions. 

Either that or a never ending quagmire in Ukraine and crippling sanctions for his nation. 

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Couple rando things I've found interesting in this conflict...

- We've been afraid of Russia's cyber-attacks for YEARS. There's been no sign (or at least news) of anything in the Ukraine being hacked-- their infrastructure, their military network, their communications. Russians have literally been shooting up satellite dishes and radio towers. If that's their way of attacking infrastructure, then all those Russian hacks and bots we've had to contended with must not be government owned.

- It's good to see so many corporate institutions, like banks and commerce sites, cutting off support to Russian business. It's one thing for our government to throw down sanctions and embargoes, but to have companies around the world self-embargo is going to end up making a difference

- My favorite thing, and something I contributed to, is a really smart and clever way to give financial support. For years we've learned how the Salvation Army is corrupt, the Red Cross is too expensive for money to help do anything other than help them operate, and the UN being bound by red tape... but somebody on Twitter of all places made a half-joke suggestion to help get money directly into the hands of the people that actually worked. ETSY and Air BnB. Book a vacation rental, buy a craft-- the money goes directly to the people providing said things.

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1 hour ago, Tank said:

Couple rando things I've found interesting in this conflict...

- We've been afraid of Russia's cyber-attacks for YEARS. There's been no sign (or at least news) of anything in the Ukraine being hacked-- their infrastructure, their military network, their communications. Russians have literally been shooting up satellite dishes and radio towers. If that's their way of attacking infrastructure, then all those Russian hacks and bots we've had to contended with must not be government owned.

 

I find this interesting too.   When this invasion kicked off, I fully expected Russia to have waves of hacks on the West in retaliation to the sanctions.  We do have some reports of Russia hacking Ukraine, but nothing so far with the West (that I know of, anyway).   It makes me wonder more if this is a case where Putin knows that if he tried that shit now, we would basically respond in kind, or worse, just turn off the internet in Russia.

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