“Nobody’s going to break us.  We are strong.  We are Ukrainians.”

  • 168 day.
  • Latest News
  • There was an attack in Crimea yesterday.  This was away from the front line.  This was at a military air base.  There were Russian tourists at the beach and they posted photographs of the blast.
  • Much of the coverage has been kept from occupied regions of Ukraine. 
  • The Russians claimed that it was an ammunition fire.  This does happens because the Russians don’t take care of their munitions.  There is a small chance that it was just a fire.  We don’t think that was what happened.
  • We think it was a Ukrainian attack.  But, we don’t think they have the munitions to reach such a distance.  The US has publicly stated that they have not supplied weapons that can reach this far.  It is thought that it some kind of modified armament.  Perhaps it is a new ballistic missile we have not seen before.  There is also speculation that it is partisan activity. 
  • This is a very long range strike.  It may well influence the fight for the Donbas. 
  • Medvedev has said that any strikes on Russian soil would be “judgement day.”
  • The first time the war has been brought to Crimea.  Raises questions of how long Putin can keep saying that this is a special operation and not a war.
  • Zelensky has said that the war would not be over until Ukraine recaptured Crimea.  It would be a huge undertaking.  You have to go over a bridge to get there.  Kirtz bridge?
  • Russia is struggling to find troops.  This ups the stakes. 
  • If Crimea is non-negotiable, i.e., if the Russians would mobilize their entire forces.  We need to consider the potential for nuclear strikes.  Is the international community prepared for a “small scale” nuclear strike?  Would all Russian oil and gas be cut off?  Would China be pressured to turn off contact?
  • This is not being discussed enough.  It needs to be made clear to Russia what would happen.  We need to take the degree Russia considers Crimea Russian theirs, seriously.  Unfortunately, Crimea needs to be seen differently.
  • In the Washington Post, there was a comment made by an Ukrainian official that the attack on Crimea was by them but not using a US supplied weapon. 
  • Ukrainians mined old railroad tracks because they knew that the Russians had old maps.  The Russians used the rails and were blown up.
  • Russian troops were moved to the South and suddenly their rear was attacked, the military base that was supposed to protect them in their offensive.
  • The Russians fight an old-school war.  Smash up the place with artillery and then move in the soldiers.  The Ukrainians are doing a good job outsmarting them. 
  • Takes away some of the air power that could be used in the Kherson region.  Think it is part of the wider plan.
  • Ukraine has been good at pushing the edges in terms of weaponry that will be supplied, pushing for more and more powerful weapons.
  • We are expecting a statement from the Russians in terms of a splashy attack. 
  • There is going to be immense international pressure for there to be a negotiated settlement in the Fall because of the impact of gas and oil supplies.  Ukraine needs to show now what they are capable of.  Ukraine still has the capability of making this kind of strike. 
  • Ukrainians know that any negotiated settlement with the Russians won’t be worth the paper it is written on.  This is true unless there are specific safeguards from the international community.
  • Any territory held will be used as a launching pad for future Russian attacks. 
  • This attack on Crimea is an important morale booster for Ukraine. 
  • Amnesty International Report
  • Some of the employees have resigned over the report.  The report is absurd.  They see all war as evil and look at everything through that lens.  It is an idealistic view and one that has nothing to do with reality.
  • It is not a feasible moral position. 
  • The co-founder of Amnesty International Sweden has resigned. 
  • Questions:
  • Why are we not seeing a lot of UN intervention in this war?  The UN sees themselves as brokering a peace and trying to see that things don’t escalate.  The work they do they have to do behind the scenes.  That’s what they would say.
  • The UN’s purpose is to provide a table for negotiations.
  • Some of their interventions have been horrible.  What is the point of this institution if Russia is on the Security Council with a veto? 

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