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The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Ukraine Liveblog Day 196: Ukrainian Navy Under Attack By Airstrikes

Publication: Ukraine Liveblogs
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The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Russian Foreign Ministry Blasts US OSCE Ambassador for Ukraine Speech
Russia is furious at US Amb. Daniel Baer, the US envoy to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), and the Russian state media is amplifying this outrage.

Today, the Russian Foreign Ministry released this statement (translation by The Interpreter).

We note that the latest impermissible statements by Permanent Representative of the USA to the OSCE D. Baer have been made at a meeting of the Permanent Council of the OSCE on 28 August.

It provokes outrage that the American diplomat, who has repeatedly indulged in odious attacks against Russia, this time crosses all permissible boundaries of diplomatic decency. His fictitious claims were not, as usual, backed up by concrete facts, but were open insults and rudeness directed at our country in abundance.

The unconcealed malice in D. Baer's statements evidently are related to the military successes of the militia of Novorossiya who in recent days managed to pin down the deadly punitive operation unleashed by Kiev with the reckless support of Washington.

We are expecting that the USA State Department will call upon its permanent representative to change such a style of behavior unbecoming to a diplomat of such a high rank at an OSCE platform, which must not serve as a tribunal for such unfounded and rude attacks, but a place of  mutual respect and constructive conversation on the key problems of European security and development of collective decisions. Otherwise, there will be nothing to talk about with this personage.

The full text of Amb. Baer's speech can be seen here. In it, the ambassador makes specific charges about the Russian Federation's invasion of Ukraine.

Mr. Chairperson, in recent days, and in the last 24 hours, there have been mounting reports of large numbers of Russian military personnel inside Ukraine, columns of Russian tanks and armored vehicles crossing into southeastern Ukraine from Russia, and a Russian helicopter gunship attack on a Ukrainian border post. These indicate that a new Russian escalation, including a Russia-directed counteroffensive, may be underway in Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts [regions]—actions that are in clear violation of international law and OSCE principles and commitments. In addition, Russia continues to supply separatist fighters with tanks, armored vehicles, artillery, and multiple rocket launchers. Russia has fired self-propelled artillery into Ukraine and has further violated Ukrainian territory by crossing over the border to fire. We are aware that Russia has sent its newest air defense systems, including the SA-22, into eastern Ukraine.



Notably, Amb. Baer mentions the SS-22s, which is NATO's name for the Pantsir-1. As we reported earlier today September 1, a US official has confirmed the use of the Pantsir-S1 in Ukraine, which we as we noted was spotted August 28 in Donetsk.

No doubt Amb. Baer's apt comparison of Russian actions in Ukraine to the infamous street card game of three-card monte in New York City also outraged Moscow:

Russia’s so-called humanitarian aid will not distract the international community from the substantial and sustained contributions Russia is making to the ongoing violence and destruction in eastern Ukraine and Crimea. Colleagues, these days you don’t see it so much, but in the 1980s on many street corners in New York, one could find a man with a card table who would entice naïve passersby to engage in a game—in one version of this game, there was a marble under one of three plastic cups—the hoodlum would move the cups quickly, in front of your eyes, telling you to watch the marble. When he stopped he’d ask which cup it was under—and inevitably the passerby fell for the trick and guessed the wrong one. The Kremlin is playing a hoodlum’s game—sending Potemkin convoys to distract from its egregious actions that are the very cause of humanitarian concerns. Don’t fall for it. Our position remains clear: no Russian personnel, arms, or other materiel—whether labeled humanitarian assistance or anything else—should enter Ukraine without the Ukrainian government’s consent. The government of Ukraine has shown it is committed to providing humanitarian relief with the support of the international community. We have already seen Ukrainian humanitarian aid distributed in communities in Luhansk oblast with the assistance of international humanitarian organizations.  If Moscow really cared about any of the people in Ukraine—including those for whom it proclaims a sense of ethnic solidarity—it would stop using them as pawns and start treating them as persons. The Kremlin has zero credibility on humanitarian issues—but if the Kremlin wants to help, then they should make private phone calls and public statements to instruct the separatists they support and sustain to allow unfettered access to those communities in need so that they can receive humanitarian aid.


Putin is now mentioning "Novorossiya" for the third time -- the first time was in a speech about the annexation of Crimea in April; the second was last week in an "appeal to the Novorossiya militia" to create a humanitarian corridor for fleeing Ukrainian troops. There are reports that Russian troops shot and killed Ukrainian soldiers as they attempted to flee, while many were able to escape.



The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Ukrainian Defence Minister Says Russia Has Lost Hybrid War, Begun Invasion, And Threatened Nuclear Strikes

Interfax-Ukraine reports that Valeriy Heletey, the Ukrainian defence minister, has written on his Facebook page that Russia has lost its "hybrid war" against Ukraine. Instead a conventional war has now begun.

Heletey also said that Russia had, off record, threatened Ukraine with the use of tactical nuclear weapons. 

Interfax-Ukraine reports (translated by The Interpreter):

"Russia has lost its hybrid war in Ukraine. Our armed forces have confidently pushed back the gangs of Russian mercenaries and killed the saboteurs and special forces operatives. That is why the Kremlin has been forced to jump to a full-scale invasion of the Donbass with regular troops. Today we already dealing with divisions and regiments. Tomorrow it might be the corps itself," wrote the head of the Ministry of Defence on his Facebook page on Monday.

According to him, the operation to liberate eastern Ukraine "from the terrorists" is over. "We urgently need to build up our defence against Russia, which is attempting to not only gain a foothold in areas previously occupied by the terrorists, but also to advance into other areas of Ukraine," affirms V. Heletey.

He stressed that "a great war has come to Ukraine, the likes of which Europe has not seen since the time of the Second World War," and also expressed an opinion that the losses "will run not into the hundreds, but the thousands, even tens of thousands." In addition, the minister said that, according to unofficial channels, the Russian side has threatened several times that "in the event of continued resistance, they are prepared to use tactical nuclear weapons against us."

V. Heletey also said that, in order to survive, Ukraine needs the "full consolidation of all available forces." He also described calls for the dismissal of the chief of the General Staff, Viktor Muzhenko, "a Russian provocation," noting that this head of the Ukrainian General Staff has been "the architect of Ukrainian victories in the east."

"Were it not for the Russian invasion, we would have completed the active phase of the ATO by early October, liberating the entire area," said the minister.

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Ukrainian Border Service Releases Video Of Burning Patrol Boat

The Ukrainian State Border Service has released video footage filmed as rescuers arrived to inspect the burning remains of one of two coastal patrol cutters struck by Russian forces in an attack yesterday off the coast near Mariupol.

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
US Senator Menendez Describes Russia's Actions As Invasion, Supports Arms For Ukraine

The Interpreter's editor-in-chief, Michael Weiss, has attended a presser given by US Senator Bob Menendez, the Chairman of the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, in Kiev today.

The senator has explicitly described Russia's actions in south-eastern Ukraine as an invasion and says that he, personally, would support providing arms to Ukraine.

The Interpreter
@Interpreter_Mag
Russian-to-English translation journal, with original analysis and commentary on Russia's foreign & domestic policy.
Interpreter_Mag
Ukraine Claims Donetsk Airport Still Under Ukrainian Control

Leonid Matyukhin, a press officer for the ATO, has announced that Donetsk Airport is still under the control of Ukrainian forces, despite attacks by Russian-backed separatists.

Novosti Donbassa reports (translated by The Interpreter):

"Donetsk Airport is ours," he said, commenting on statements by DNR terrorists claiming that some of the Ukrainian soldiers had raised a white flag and decided to leave Donetsk Airport. It was also reported that there had been a fire in the main building of the airport during the night.

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