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Friday, September 12, 2014

For a 400-strong Ukrainian army unit based around the south-eastern village of Stepanivka, mid-August was the moment their lives turned to horror.

Dozens of unmarked tanks, armored personnel carriers, missile launchers and military trucks, appeared on the road from the border. The unit suddenly faced not just the rebels but regular Russian troops, and artillery barrages from inside Russia that turned the area into what another survivor called a "furnace, pure hell".

When rumours spread that Chechen mercenaries – with a reputation for torturing captives – would follow in a "clean-up" operation, what remained of the Ukrainian unit panicked.
"Some of our boys shot themselves in the head, right in front of me," said one soldier, asking not to be identified as he was not authorised to speak to the press


Sunday, August 03, 2014

The history of the Israel/Palestine conflict in three minutes and thirty two seconds by American animator Nina Paley. "This land is mine/God gave this land to me/This brave and ancient land to me/And when the morning sun/Reveals her hills and plains/Then I see a land/Where children can run free." read more


Saturday, August 02, 2014

President Barack Obama has finally sealed his approval to the Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act, which repeals a 2013 decision of the Library of Congress that made unlocking of cell phone illegal and was passed by the Congress unanimously last month. The White House has hailed the new cell phone law, terming it "A rare trifecta: A win for American consumers, a win for wireless competition, and an example of democracy at its best -- bipartisan congressional action in direct response to a call to action from the American people."


Friday, August 01, 2014

Mark Adomanis: Stephen Cohen and Katrina vanden Heuvel have now penned a truly shocking editorial at The Nation, one of the more shocking that I've read since the crisis in Ukraine exploded this past winter. Cohen and Heuvel don't content themselves with making the observation that the Ukrainian military has been inexcusably clumsy in its battle against the Russian-backed separatists or that some residents of Eastern Ukraine harbor resentments against the new government in Kiev. Cohen and vanden Heuvel, however, make a far more dramatic and bizarre indictment: that Ukraine's new pro-Western government was plotting to seize its own territory. Plotting to seize it's own territory? What? read more


Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Two new craters have emerged in Siberia, deepening the giant hole saga. Though not as big as the first crater, which extended hundreds of feet in diameter, these new craters are just as strange.

There's been no shortage of theories. Hypotheses have ranged from asteroids to an underground missile explosion to global warming, a melt of the permafrost.


Comments

About that 1990 promise...
www.nytimes.com

"The issue was expansion into the territory of the former East German state. (There is no evidence that in late January or early February of 1990 anyone -- Mr. Genscher, James Baker or Mikhail Gorbachev -- was even thinking, much less talking, about the possibility of NATO expansion even further into East-Central Europe)."

"While Mr. Baker was in Moscow, however, officials at the White House had analyzed Mr. Genscher's position with respect to NATO and East Germany more closely and decided that it was untenable. President George Bush and Secretary Baker both agreed, and, only hours after Mr. Baker met with Mr. Gorbachev, the United States adopted a new position."

"The new position was immediately publicized. It was presented directly to Mr. Gorbachev by Mr. Baker in Moscow on May 18, and presented to Mr. Gorbachev again by Mr. Bush in Washington on May 31. Mr. Gorbachev did not oppose the new formula."

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