12 votes

Megathread for news/updates/discussion of Russian invasion of Ukraine - April 29-May 1

This thread is posted Monday/Wednesday/Friday - please try to post relevant content in here, such as news, updates, opinion articles, etc. Especially significant updates may warrant a separate topic, but most should be posted here.

If you'd like to help support Ukraine, please visit the official site at https://help.gov.ua/ - an official portal for those who want to provide humanitarian or financial assistance to people of Ukraine, businesses or the government at the times of resistance against the Russian aggression.

12 comments

  1. skybrian
    (edited )
    Link
    Here's an archived Twitter thread about how Ukrainians are building drones to drop grenades on Russian soldiers. Content warning: videos of soldiers being bombed. (The videos don't autoplay on the...

    Here's an archived Twitter thread about how Ukrainians are building drones to drop grenades on Russian soldiers.

    Content warning: videos of soldiers being bombed. (The videos don't autoplay on the threadreaderapp website, though.)

    4 votes
  2. cfabbro
    Link
    Russians plunder $5M farm vehicles from Ukraine -- to find they've been remotely disabled (CNN)

    Russians plunder $5M farm vehicles from Ukraine -- to find they've been remotely disabled (CNN)

    Over the past few weeks there's been a growing number of reports of Russian troops stealing farm equipment, grain and even building materials - beyond widespread looting of residences. But the removal of valuable agricultural equipment from a John Deere dealership in Melitopol speaks to an increasingly organized operation, one that even uses Russian military transport as part of the heist.

    CNN has learned that the equipment was removed from an Agrotek dealership in Melitopol, which has been occupied by Russian forces since early March. Altogether it's valued at nearly $5 million. The combine harvesters alone are worth $300,000 each.

    CNN is not naming a contact in Melitopol familiar with the details of the case for their own safety.

    The contact said the process began with the seizure of two combine harvesters, a tractor and a seeder. Over the next few weeks, everything else was removed: in all 27 pieces of farm machinery. One of the flat-bed trucks used, and caught on camera, had a white "Z" painted on it and appeared to be a military truck.

    The contact said there were rival groups of Russian troops: some would come in the morning and some in the evening.

    Some of the machinery was taken to a nearby village, but some of it embarked on a long overland journey to Chechnya more than 700 miles away. The sophistication of the machinery, which are equipped with GPS, meant that its travel could be tracked. It was last tracked to the village of Zakhan Yurt in Chechnya.

    The equipment ferried to Chechnya, which included combine harvesters -- can also be controlled remotely. "When the invaders drove the stolen harvesters to Chechnya, they realized that they could not even turn them on, because the harvesters were locked remotely," the contact said.

    The equipment now appears to be languishing at a farm near Grozny.

    Other sources in the Melitopol region say theft by Russian military units has extended to grain held in silos, in a region that produces hundreds of thousands of tonnes of crops a year.

    One source told CNN that "the occupiers are offering local farmers to share their profits 50% to 50%." But the farmers trying to work in areas occupied by Russian troops are unable to move their produce.

    "Not a single elevator works. None of the ports are working. You will not take this grain from the occupied territory anywhere. " So Russian forces are simply taking the grain, the source said. "They steal it, take it to Crimea and that's it."

    Last week the mayor of Melitopol posted a video showing a convoy of trucks leaving Melitopol allegedly loaded with grain. "We have clear evidence that they unloaded grain from the Melitopol city elevator. They robbed the elevator along with private farms," the mayor told CNN.

    4 votes
  3. [4]
    vektor
    (edited )
    Link
    Scholz at a labor day rally - At 2:30 or so, the chants you can hear are saying "ohne Waffen Frieden schaffen" - "create peace without arms". Apparently quite a few pacifists present. Gets Scholz...

    Scholz at a labor day rally -

    It is out of the question when some people pull out history books and look where borders used to be and then use military force to shift borders. That is imperialism, and we don't want that in Europe.

    At 2:30 or so, the chants you can hear are saying "ohne Waffen Frieden schaffen" - "create peace without arms". Apparently quite a few pacifists present. Gets Scholz wound up, apparently, as he's got quite the pathos going when he then declares:

    And thus it's clear: We will further support Ukraine. With Money. With humanitarian aid. But also, and this has to be said, so that they can defend themselves, with military aid, as many other european countries do. That is what's necessary now. And I want to also say this: I respect pacifism. I respect every stance. But it has to appear cynical to a Ukrainian citizen, if he's told to defend against putin's agression without weapons. That stance has fallen out of time.

    That is quite the unusual demeanor for our chancellor. Not that I mind. (E: To expand on that, there's a lot of internal resistance in his party, SPD, to military aid. I suspect it's exactly this kind of crowd here that is resisting. This and their political representation within SPD. So for him to speak this clearly for military aid with this kind of crowd, I suspect it's not that he's been unwilling to deliver military aid to Ukraine (as has been said), but rather that this policy is lacking support within his party.

    Also, Germany seems ready to support an oil embargo - follow-up to my post from a few days back about Habeck's statement that we're making great progress on that front.

    And the opposition leader Friedrich Merz wants to go to Kyiv - his chief of staff calls it a matter of national policy (as opposed to party policy), but I'm calling BS. This is entirely so he can later say "I went to Kyiv first", get some nice pictures with Zelenskyy and use it in the next election to call Scholz weak. I hope Zelenskyy has the presence of mind to see it for what it is and stand the bastard up. The general narrative I see is that a visit of Scholz (or Merz, even more so) would not achieve anything: Aid is best organized from Berlin, and such a visit would have mere symbolical value. So for an opposition leader to go there would be quite the symbol too; a symbol I don't think we need.

    4 votes
    1. [3]
      skybrian
      Link Parent
      I assume "has fallen out of time" is a translation of an idiom meaning something like "is out of date" in English?

      I assume "has fallen out of time" is a translation of an idiom meaning something like "is out of date" in English?

      3 votes
      1. [2]
        vektor
        Link Parent
        Correct. Couldn't find a good phrase myself, so I relied on a dictionary. The fact you have to ask means the dictionary lied to me.

        Correct. Couldn't find a good phrase myself, so I relied on a dictionary. The fact you have to ask means the dictionary lied to me.

        3 votes
        1. skybrian
          Link Parent
          It's a phrase that is sometimes used but not often. To me it sounds rather literary or poetic. From search results it seems to sometimes be used to describe places that haven't changed much.

          It's a phrase that is sometimes used but not often. To me it sounds rather literary or poetic. From search results it seems to sometimes be used to describe places that haven't changed much.

          1 vote
  4. [2]
    cmccabe
    (edited )
    Link
    Ukraine Says Russia Army Top General Wounded in Command Post Strike, ‘Dozens’ Killed...

    Ukraine Says Russia Army Top General Wounded in Command Post Strike, ‘Dozens’ Killed
    https://www.kyivpost.com/ukraine-politics/ukraine-says-russia-army-top-general-wounded-in-command-post-strike-dozens-killed.html

    Official Ukrainian sources on May 1 said devastating artillery strikes on a Russian military headquarters may have injured the senior general in the Russian Army, Valery Gerasimov, along with killing or wounding dozens of other military personnel, many of them senior members of the officer’s corps.

    This report is still not widely confirmed, so wait for further news. Most reports are saying that General did not suffer serious injuries. But, if true, the simple fact that he was there in person and was injured shortly after arriving is informative about the state of the Russian military organization and about the state of Ukrainian intelligence.

    EDIT: Here’s another report about General Getasimov’s presence in Ukraine, this one not mentioning him being injured:

    Russia’s top officer visited the front line to change the offensive’s course, U.S. and Ukraine officials say.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2022/05/01/world/europe/russian-general-dead-valery-gerasimov.html

    2 votes
    1. MimicSquid
      Link Parent
      For context, Gerasimov is the most senior member of the armed forces of the Russian Federation. He's developed their military doctrine, and his loss would be a huge blow.

      For context, Gerasimov is the most senior member of the armed forces of the Russian Federation. He's developed their military doctrine, and his loss would be a huge blow.

      2 votes
  5. sp00ky
    Link
    One more commonality between Russia and China. Programme of ‘patriotic education’ aims to create next generation of Putin faithful …

    One more commonality between Russia and China.

    Programme of ‘patriotic education’ aims to create next generation of Putin faithful

    Young people have not only been charged with preserving the state’s version of history, they are also expected to be vigilant and denounce efforts by others to “falsify” and “diminish” Russia’s historical role in the world.

    In the longer term, patriotic education aims to establish a deep and enduring sense of patriotism, duty and love of country in the next generation of Russian citizens, along with a great deal of respect for the military as an institution. Key to this is Russia’s systematic presentation of its history to new youth groups, while cutting them off from opposing worldviews. The creation of future generations that can be easily moulded to believe the Kremlin’s messages and fulfil its agendas is an important feature of Putin’s toy soldiers.

    2 votes
  6. [3]
    cfabbro
    Link
    Evacuations underway in Mariupol; Pelosi visits Ukraine (AP)

    Evacuations underway in Mariupol; Pelosi visits Ukraine (AP)

    A long-awaited effort to evacuate civilians from a steel plant in the Ukrainian city of Mariupol was underway Sunday, the United Nations said, while U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi revealed she visited Ukraine’s president to show unflinching American support for the country’s defense against Russian aggression.

    U.N. humanitarian spokesman Saviano Abreu told The Associated Press that the operation to bring civilians out of the sprawling Azovstal steel plant was being carried out with the International Committee of the Red Cross and in coordination with Ukrainian and Russian officials.

    As many as 100,000 people are believed to still be in blockaded Mariupol, including up to 1,000 civilians who were hunkered down with an estimated 2,000 Ukrainian fighters beneath the Soviet-era steel plant — the only part of the city not occupied by the Russians.

    The fate of the Ukrainian fighters was not immediately clear.

    Zaporizhzhia, a city about 141 miles (227 kilometers) northwest of Mariupol, was the destination of the evacuation effort, Abreu said. He said women, children and the elderly — who have been stranded for nearly two months — will be evacuated to the city, where they will receive immediate humanitarian support, including psychological services.

    A team from Doctors Without Borders was at a reception center for displaced people in Zaporizhzhia on Sunday, in preparation for the U.N. convoy’s arrival, if successful. Stress, exhaustion and low supplies of food were likely to have weakened the health of civilians who have been trapped underground at the plant.

    Ukrainian regiment Deputy Commander Sviatoslav Palamar, meanwhile, called for the evacuation of wounded Ukrainian fighters as well as civilians. “We don’t know why they are not taken away and their evacuation to the territory controlled by Ukraine is not being discussed,” he said in a video posted Saturday on the regiment’s Telegram channel.

    Video and images from inside the steel plant, shared with the AP by two Ukrainian women who said their husbands were among the fighters refusing to surrender there, showed men with stained bandages, open wounds or amputated limbs, including some that appeared gangrenous. The AP could not independently verify the location and date of the video, which the women said was taken last week.

    1 vote
    1. [2]
      NoblePath
      Link Parent
      Is there a path for Ukraine to re-take, either with ir without arms?

      Is there a path for Ukraine to re-take, either with ir without arms?

      1. cfabbro
        (edited )
        Link Parent
        The Ukrainian army eventually retaking Mariupol certainly isn't outside the realm of possibility, but the battle lines are currently still a long ways off (65+km to the NNW), so I wouldn't count...

        The Ukrainian army eventually retaking Mariupol certainly isn't outside the realm of possibility, but the battle lines are currently still a long ways off (65+km to the NNW), so I wouldn't count on it happening anytime soon.

        Without arms? I don't really know what you mean by that. In a peace agreement? Who knows. But I highly doubt Putin would give it up willingly at this point.

        2 votes