UKRAINE UPDATE: NATO EXPANDS

WEDNESDAY 29 JUNE 2022

UKRAINE UPDATE: UKRAINE, THE LATEST, The Telegraph

  • Boris Johnson was making fun of Putin in public remarks.  He was filmed talking to Macron joking about taking off their tops and riding around on horseback.  When asked about these comments he doubled down on them and called it a “crazy macho war.”
  • Another official, Defense Secretary, was talking about Putin and “small man syndrome.”  Said Putin has a toxic view of the world.
  • Finland and Sweden are joining NATO.  Turkey gave up its opposition to the two countries joining.  Sweden changed its terrorism legislation in response to Turkish problems with the PKK. 
  • There were changes in restrictions on arms to Turkey.  Extradition requests procedure was changed as well.  There would be no support for the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Unit.  This was seen as a key concession.
  •  There were concerns about fighter planes and U.S. approval.  It is thought that perhaps in a phone call between Biden and Erdogan, there may be a deal about fighter jets. 
  • Kaliningrad is now surrounded by NATO.
  • Biden is going to meet with Erdogan on Wednesday. 
  • Francis Dearnley: This may not be quite as much a victory for Turkey as has been suggested, certainly by Turkey.  The language is very bureaucratic.  It has forced Turkey to make a fundamental choice, to be a thorn in the side of NATO unity or become a member of the club.  We have ended up in the later space.  Turkey can no longer be the broker between Russia and the West. 
  • The mayor of Kherson has been detained and taken away.  This is what is happening in the occupied regions.  They had threatened to arrest him if he didn’t go along with their demands.  He refused to go along.  This is another example of the repression of the democratic elements in the occupied areas.  They called him a “poster boy for the Nazi community.”  “Finally, he has been neutralized.”
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  • Russians are running out of precision guided missiles.  One of the older missiles is evidently one of those that hit the shopping center.  This means more civilians being killed.  (Note: I don’t see how you could hit more civilians than they are already hitting.)
  • Zelensky posted a video of a missile hitting the shopping center.  The Russians claim that the mall was used to store weaponry. 
  • This weaponry is unethical because it is so out of date.
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  • NATO territory is going to expand.  This would have seemed impossible even a few months ago.  If the intent was to splinter the West and create fear of challenging Russia, it has backfired.  Some still want to bring Russia into the fold. But, after the G7 there is a broad agreement.  This is, however, about future escalation and does little about the present conflict. 
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