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TACTICAL VOTING AT THE 1997 GENERAL ELECTION – politicalbetting.com

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  • TheuniondivvieTheuniondivvie Posts: 33,553
    edited March 13
    ydoethur said:

    ydoethur said:

    Nigelb said:

    Not the worst idea for a new symbol of opposition.

    https://twitter.com/KevinRothrock/status/1502761903046774786
    Police in Nizhny Novgorod arrested a demonstrator today for protesting with a blank sign. Welcome to Russia in 2022.

    In 1952 the NKVD challenged an 84 year old man for carrying a banner outside the Kremlin saying 'Thank you Comrade Stalin for my happy childhood.'

    They pointed out Stalin wasn't even born when he was a child.

    They got the immortal reply, 'That's what made it so happy.'
    As a fellow pedant I hope you would welcome the observation that the NKVD had rebranded by 1952.
    Quite right, I thought it was 1954 but it was 1946.
    Soviet/Russian security services have gone through more variations than the Deep Purple line up, it is difficult to keep up. Largely the same outcomes though.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 40,109
    Meanwhile, a Crufts update...last night's Toy Group finished with a rather fancy Yorkshire Terrier winner, who will go up against the Toy Poodle, Irish Terrier, Greyhound, Siberian Husky and Border Collie, plus the winner of this afternoon's Gundog judging, at this evenings Grand Finale Best of Show competition.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 27,341
    IanB2 said:

    Fukuyama:

    Russia is heading for an outright defeat in Ukraine. Russian planning was incompetent, based on a flawed assumption that Ukrainians were favorable to Russia and that their military would collapse immediately following an invasion. Russian soldiers were evidently carrying dress uniforms for their victory parade in Kyiv rather than extra ammo and rations. Putin at this point has committed the bulk of his entire military to this operation—there are no vast reserves of forces he can call up to add to the battle. Russian troops are stuck outside various Ukrainian cities where they face huge supply problems and constant Ukrainian attacks.

    https://www.americanpurpose.com/articles/preparing-for-defeat/

    I was struck by that and I hope he's right. He's very emotionally invested in Ukraine though. He's done a lot of work with Ukraine's new breed of politicians and officials. We sneer at 'The End Of History'. Places like Ukraine do not.
    He's probably right on this one:

    There is no conceivable compromise that would be acceptable to both Russia and Ukraine given the losses they have taken at this point.

    And on these two, we can only hope:

    The collapse of their position could be sudden and catastrophic, rather than happening slowly through a war of attrition. The army in the field will reach a point where it can neither be supplied nor withdrawn, and morale will vaporize.

    Putin will not survive the defeat of his army. He gets support because he is perceived to be a strongman; what does he have to offer once he demonstrates incompetence and is stripped of his coercive power?




    He also makes the point that NATO staying away from an NFZ not only avoids escalation but down the road will deprive the Russians of a potential excuse for their (predicted) defeat.
    Saddam Hussein survived 1991 - I suspect that Putin could survive a "defeat" in Ukraine. Say that he has to pull the army back to a bit beyond the pre war borders.

    He will use sanctions as a rallying cry to War Socialism, blame them for the "reverse" and spend a great deal of time trying to undermine them, slowly, in the West
  • RochdalePioneersRochdalePioneers Posts: 18,515

    moonshine said:

    moonshine said:

    IanB2 said:

    moonshine said:

    And so another Sunday. Things feel a bit more optimistic than they did two Sundays ago or perhaps that is just me.

    On to more important matters. In a wild bit of the garden I just found what looks like a cow pat in a place where there have certainly been no cows. What could this be? A badger or fox that has eaten daffodils and now has the squits?

    If it's a badger, you'll have holes in your lawn.
    Plenty of badgers round here. Last summer they dug a latrine in the middle of the grass. I do my best now to have an evening “badger piss” somewhere on the fence line, as the only effective deterrent I could find on google.
    We have had an extensive cull round here nd as a result I haven't seen a badger in a couple of years. (The hedgehogs though say "Yay!"). Before that, they used to rip up a field behind the house every August. Looked like half of it had been ploughed. I was told the trick to stop them doing this was to throw handfuls of peanuts on the field. They don't need to disturb the turf to find them.
    A good tip.

    Yes it does seem unfortunate that we have forgotten why culling badgers was necessary. We lost the apex predators on these shores and to keep the ecosystem in balance had to do the job of culling ourselves. Pity the poor hedgehogs now large parts of the country are overrun by badgers.
    In our last house we had a wood at the end of the garden, and after we'd been there about twenty years we started to get badgers visiting the garden; we fed them all sorts of things and they never damaged the lawn.
    I never found the sett itself; the wood was private property. I often think that if we hadn't moved I could have put together a contract with the BBC or someone for wildlife filming!

    It's the one thing I miss about living there.
    We have a large side garden and a looooong back garden. There is a clear path - the badger M9 - the length of the back garden where badgers come out of the wooded ground behind the garden, across our grass, across the drive and out the gate into the side lane. Neighbour across the lane has tried to feed them, and I almost ran over one of them one night coming home.
  • MrEdMrEd Posts: 5,225
    Re the attack against the base near Lviv this morning, one possibility is that Russia may be trying to bring in NATO involvement not because it would widen the war but because it would give them an excuse to exit / face save and / or allow Putin to survive the withdraw of Russia’s forces. Putin would claim that NATO has decidedly intervened for Ukraine and that, for the sake of ‘world peace’ etc, Russia has decided to stop the operation and pull back. He could then get his own version of the “stab in the back” theory with China undoubtedly giving him vocal support. He then uses NATO intervention to shore up support at home.

    Not a great scenario as it leaves him in place and keeps the conflict simmering long term but, short term…
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 27,341

    Fukuyama:

    Russia is heading for an outright defeat in Ukraine. Russian planning was incompetent, based on a flawed assumption that Ukrainians were favorable to Russia and that their military would collapse immediately following an invasion. Russian soldiers were evidently carrying dress uniforms for their victory parade in Kyiv rather than extra ammo and rations. Putin at this point has committed the bulk of his entire military to this operation—there are no vast reserves of forces he can call up to add to the battle. Russian troops are stuck outside various Ukrainian cities where they face huge supply problems and constant Ukrainian attacks.

    https://www.americanpurpose.com/articles/preparing-for-defeat/

    I was struck by that and I hope he's right. He's very emotionally invested in Ukraine though. He's done a lot of work with Ukraine's new breed of politicians and officials. We sneer at 'The End Of History'. Places like Ukraine do not.
    If you had lived through as much history as they have, the idea of "nothing much happened for 500 years" would be very, very attractive.
  • LostPasswordLostPassword Posts: 7,937
    Worth bearing in mind that the clip is from early December last, according to replies to the tweet.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 40,109

    IanB2 said:

    kjh said:

    tlg86 said:

    IanB2 said:

    tlg86 said:

    kjh said:

    rcs1000 said:

    Baxter’s latest prediction for the successor seats to Russell Johnston’s old Lib/LD constituency:

    Highland Central LD 9.8%
    Highland East & Elgin LD 4.0%
    Argyll LD 9.2%

    Like snow off a dyke.

    That's true of an awful lot of LD seats, though.

    As a party, they have a low (almost non-existent) floor, but a surprisingly high ceiling.
    I've liked, but wanted to comment that I have liked. It is so true. Unlike Lab and Con we can win anywhere, but constantly have to work to hold otherwise it reverts. Once it reverts we can just disappear. I believe our core vote is below 4% and even that is subject to tactical voting.
    I don’t think that’s true. I couldn’t imagine the Lib Dems winning Mansfield, for example.
    Chesterfield isn't so far away and isn't so different.
    Sorry for the slow reply. My mum is from near Chesterfield and I would say they are quite different. Chesterfield has some quite posh areas which are/were fertile for the Lib Dems.
    Redcar
    Burnley
    Edge Hill (demographic when won)
    Southwark (demographic when won)
    Lots of rock solid Tory seats from nothing in by elections.

    If there is a plague on both houses re Con/Lab and you can convince the electorate you have a chance, anywhere is winnable.

    I gave an example earlier. No members, no supporters, no deliverers, etc etc. Threw resources in and won. Most challenging bit was getting signatures on nomination paper. Rest was down to throwing resources at it. Big win, never close before. Turned it into a marginal. Only just held in following all up election. Other 2 candidates also just missed being elected, whereas before they would not be close. Ward became split and has since flipped back and forth. If we stop working it, it will revert to solid Tory.
    Which was essentially my point. The LibDems suffer from a low core but enjoy a high ceiling - said enjoyment punctuated by the coalition and not regained until relatively recently. It's why Labour has less chance of winning some Tory seats from second than the LibDems do in the same seats from third; take away everyone who would never vote Labour and there aren't enough voters left in these places to be able to win, even in the best imaginable year. My own seat of the IOW, where Labour is now second, is a good example.
    It's a serious discussion and I understand the point. I'd question, though, whether the assumption that that dissatisfied Conservatives will never vote Labour - which was largely true under Jeremy Corbyn, fond though I am of him - is still true, partly because Starmer is obviously centrist to the extent that it's hard to see a difference to the LibDems, and partly because Davey has been more or less invisible (mostly due to the media habit of just quoting the big parties - I sympathise, but it's true). If we look at the latest poll on the YouGov website, we find that, of 2019 Conservative voters, 79% will still vote Tory, 7% will vote Labour and 2% will vote LibDem. Will the remainder be more likely to vote LD than Lab if they don't vote Con? I'm not sure the evidence suggests that that's true.

    https://docs.cdn.yougov.com/zek1b001f5/TheTimes_VI_220309_W.pdf

    Conversely, 30% of LibDems plan to vote Labour. In the South outside London, much of which is what we think of as the Blue Wall, the figures are Con 41, Lab 31, LD 13.

    In a seat like Guildford, the position is clear for a tactical voter as the result last time was Con 45, LD 39 Lab 7 - the LDs can definitely say that tactical voters should go to them. Then there are seats like Worthing West (Con 56, Lab 29, LD 11) where frankly everyone may as well vote to show their preference as tactical voting won't be enough. But Worthing East and Shoreham was Con 51, Lab 37, LD 8. That's the sort of seat where the LibDems really oughtn't to be fighting an "only we can beat the Tories" campaign.

    Bottom line: we all need to focus, quietly compare notes, and minimise the number of seats where we're both claiming to be the natural tactical vote.
    For sure.

    And, quite clearly, a good number of dissatisfied Tories are willing to vote Labour under a moderate leader. The question is simply whether this can ever be enough to win in the Tory's rural strongholds of the SE and SW. Most of these continue to be impregnable, because Labour can never win them and the LDs are still too flat on their backs, incapable of replicating North Shropshire in a GE even if the campaigning circumstances prove to be propitious.
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 34,768
    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.
  • RochdalePioneersRochdalePioneers Posts: 18,515

    The speed of the West’s reaction to the Putin War on Ukraine is extraordinary. Corralling dozens of democracies, each with their own decision making processes, into such a united response is a major achievement. Joe Biden has played a key role in enabling it to happen. My guess is that in Europe the 2024 American presidential election is also casting a long shadow. If Trump or an acolyte wins, as seems probable, the US will not be a reliable partner.

    The complete reboot of the EU over the last month and the likelihood of an isolationist, America First, Republican President in 2025 leaves the UK in a very tricky strategic position. We’ll pretend it doesn’t, of course, but in the real world that won’t help.

    The thought of Trump is a nightmare but the idea the UK will be in a tricky position seems to be unlikely in view of this 2 day meeting in Chequers and Downing Street of the Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF)

    We need to realise that this war has changed everything and the time for them and us is yesterday's news as we move to greater cooperation which does not necessitate UK rejoining the EU

    https://news.sky.com/story/ukraine-war-boris-johnson-to-host-summit-with-nordic-and-baltic-leaders-to-deter-russian-aggression-12564716

    I totally agree. The way forward is for much closer cooperation with the EU, without the need to rejoin. I wonder what the ERG feels about this, though.

    I genuinely believe the ERG will be marginalised by circumstances and if not then GE24 is lost to the conservatives

    It really is time to move beyond Brexit. That needs realism from all parties. We need to be cooperating closely with the EU on key issues, such as security and energy; while at a time of mounting global uncertainty, we may also want to look again at whether greater access to a single market of 400 million people that is literally on our doorstep might be a good idea. None of which means we must or even should rejoin the EU.

    We are absolutely on the same page
    As am I - an a lot of people also are on this page. So the question remains why neither the ruling party nor the official opposition are yet there. Both seem to be held captive by the referendum war - the Tories are still trying to portray the EUSSR as the Big Bad, Labour in hoc to petty-minded bigots who think we have to keep the forrin out even if they are women and children fleeing for their lives.

    When we come out of this Ukraine crisis we will find a world where alliances are more valuable than ever and with both NATO and the EU strengthened by it. Several EU countries aren't in NATO and feel vulnerable enough to be reconsidering that position. If the UK is sensible it will reconsider its EU position so that we stop attacking them and become partners again like Norway.
    I think that in a war concentration has to be on the complexities of it but a time will come when we move into calmer waters and cooperation with the EU in all aspects is certain to follow as a direct result of the change in circumstances

    It is good that the UK has acted largely in unison with the EU, and let's hope that our desire to have a much better relationship between ourselves follows on and it is time to call out both extremes on the leave and remain sides, as they only serve to continue the division
    I hope so. The petty one-upmanship has been depressing. Our inability to accept the EU as been good for anything or its senior politicians doing anything worthwhile. Some of the press seem to think Macron is as big an enemy as Putin and we have continued to see the petulant war of words and lack of grace from ministers.

    For me the king turd remains our disgusting policy towards the Ukrainian women and children fleeing the war. Refusing to grant them safe haven is bad enough, branding them a "security threat" thanks to the Irish government showing the humanity that we cannot is beyond belief.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 28,226
    IanB2 said:

    moonshine said:

    IanB2 said:

    moonshine said:

    And so another Sunday. Things feel a bit more optimistic than they did two Sundays ago or perhaps that is just me.

    On to more important matters. In a wild bit of the garden I just found what looks like a cow pat in a place where there have certainly been no cows. What could this be? A badger or fox that has eaten daffodils and now has the squits?

    If it's a badger, you'll have holes in your lawn.
    Plenty of badgers round here. Last summer they dug a latrine in the middle of the grass. I do my best now to have an evening “badger piss” somewhere on the fence line, as the only effective deterrent I could find on google.
    We have had an extensive cull round here nd as a result I haven't seen a badger in a couple of years. (The hedgehogs though say "Yay!"). Before that, they used to rip up a field behind the house every August. Looked like half of it had been ploughed. I was told the trick to stop them doing this was to throw handfuls of peanuts on the field. They don't need to disturb the turf to find them.

    What I see far less of in South Devon than in Warwickshire is magpies.

    We have plenty to spare! Despite the sea eagles I've now seen twice, circling above the town.
    Used to get them in our old 'wildlife' garden, but now, even though we're close to a wooded area, we see very few indeed. Outside the town, though, there are more about. Predators here are buzzards.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 40,109

    IanB2 said:

    A less optimistic view than Fukuyama's

    'Putin and Trump have convinced me: I was wrong about the 21st century
    Robert Reich'

    https://tinyurl.com/5n7zh5t9

    Yes, but:

    - the Ukranians are both nationalistic and desperate to be part of the EU and NATO;
    - controlling what citizens know undoubtedly is more difficult in the digital age. Plus the globalised economy is making sanctions and bans on Russian activity more powerful.

    He's right that wars can still happen - but who has been arguing that they can't?

    His key point is the continuing need for us to defend liberal democracy. Which is the optimistic scenario that Fukuyama is offering us.
    I wouldn't argue with that but I think there's a case to be made that decades of dewy eyed optimism about the eventual victory of liberal democracy are more to blame for where we are than Merkel, Corbyn, woke, what some bloke said on an obscure political betting site and all the other scapegoats so beloved on here.
    And taking this point and running with it, there's an argument that the relative equality of the cold war years, during which middle and lower earning folks improved their position considerably, was underpinned in part at least by the cold war itself, and the need to demonstrate that western democracy could deliver benefits to the majority of its citizens that communism could not.

    After communism was defeated (essentially by its own economic failings), inequality has taken off and we now live in a world where many younger and poorer people feel less invested in liberal democracy as a consequence.
  • Dura_AceDura_Ace Posts: 9,503
    ydoethur said:



    Very much hope that Mrs DA's plan works and that they can come on to you. Are they friends or are you working with a charity? Either way, respect and best wishes.

    I made the offer to Mrs DA to exfiltrate them myself but her reply was, "They've been through enough without having to deal with you."

    Their story is not a happy one. They are the daughters of a friend of Mrs DA's Russian friend who lives in Kyiv. Their mother is a Ukrainian cop who is missing presumed shot by Russians. The father is of no account and hasn't been on the scene for years.
  • DecrepiterJohnLDecrepiterJohnL Posts: 13,905

    *UPDATE**

    They are Back! Russian Navy landing ships staging off Crimea

    Same last week but they returned to port. Threat of landings near Odessa, Ukraine, reduced

    But last couple of days people have been watching them gather again. Confirm LST (landing Ships).

    Nod @detresfa_


    https://twitter.com/CovertShores/status/1502944456777117696

    Amphibious landings are not a good sign, assuming Russia can pull it off.
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 40,109
    edited March 13
    MrEd said:

    IanB2 said:

    kjh said:

    tlg86 said:

    IanB2 said:

    tlg86 said:

    kjh said:

    rcs1000 said:

    Baxter’s latest prediction for the successor seats to Russell Johnston’s old Lib/LD constituency:

    Highland Central LD 9.8%
    Highland East & Elgin LD 4.0%
    Argyll LD 9.2%

    Like snow off a dyke.

    That's true of an awful lot of LD seats, though.

    As a party, they have a low (almost non-existent) floor, but a surprisingly high ceiling.
    I've liked, but wanted to comment that I have liked. It is so true. Unlike Lab and Con we can win anywhere, but constantly have to work to hold otherwise it reverts. Once it reverts we can just disappear. I believe our core vote is below 4% and even that is subject to tactical voting.
    I don’t think that’s true. I couldn’t imagine the Lib Dems winning Mansfield, for example.
    Chesterfield isn't so far away and isn't so different.
    Sorry for the slow reply. My mum is from near Chesterfield and I would say they are quite different. Chesterfield has some quite posh areas which are/were fertile for the Lib Dems.
    Redcar
    Burnley
    Edge Hill (demographic when won)
    Southwark (demographic when won)
    Lots of rock solid Tory seats from nothing in by elections.

    If there is a plague on both houses re Con/Lab and you can convince the electorate you have a chance, anywhere is winnable.

    I gave an example earlier. No members, no supporters, no deliverers, etc etc. Threw resources in and won. Most challenging bit was getting signatures on nomination paper. Rest was down to throwing resources at it. Big win, never close before. Turned it into a marginal. Only just held in following all up election. Other 2 candidates also just missed being elected, whereas before they would not be close. Ward became split and has since flipped back and forth. If we stop working it, it will revert to solid Tory.
    Which was essentially my point. The LibDems suffer from a low core but enjoy a high ceiling - said enjoyment punctuated by the coalition and not regained until relatively recently. It's why Labour has less chance of winning some Tory seats from second than the LibDems do in the same seats from third; take away everyone who would never vote Labour and there aren't enough voters left in these places to be able to win, even in the best imaginable year. My own seat of the IOW, where Labour is now second, is a good example.
    It's a serious discussion and I understand the point. I'd question, though, whether the assumption that that dissatisfied Conservatives will never vote Labour - which was largely true under Jeremy Corbyn, fond though I am of him - is still true, partly because Starmer is obviously centrist to the extent that it's hard to see a difference to the LibDems, and partly because Davey has been more or less invisible (mostly due to the media habit of just quoting the big parties - I sympathise, but it's true). If we look at the latest poll on the YouGov website, we find that, of 2019 Conservative voters, 79% will still vote Tory, 7% will vote Labour and 2% will vote LibDem. Will the remainder be more likely to vote LD than Lab if they don't vote Con? I'm not sure the evidence suggests that that's true.

    https://docs.cdn.yougov.com/zek1b001f5/TheTimes_VI_220309_W.pdf

    Conversely, 30% of LibDems plan to vote Labour. In the South outside London, much of which is what we think of as the Blue Wall, the figures are Con 41, Lab 31, LD 13.

    In a seat like Guildford, the position is clear for a tactical voter as the result last time was Con 45, LD 39 Lab 7 - the LDs can definitely say that tactical voters should go to them. Then there are seats like Worthing West (Con 56, Lab 29, LD 11) where frankly everyone may as well vote to show their preference as tactical voting won't be enough. But Worthing East and Shoreham was Con 51, Lab 37, LD 8. That's the sort of seat where the LibDems really oughtn't to be fighting an "only we can beat the Tories" campaign.

    Bottom line: we all need to focus, quietly compare notes, and minimise the number of seats where we're both claiming to be the natural tactical vote.
    The problem with that approach Nick ia that, if the Liberals and Labour are seen as too close together, then it allows the Conservatives to portray Liberals as proxy Labour with all the things attached to that. You also need Conservatives to stay at home, as they did in 1997.

    They'll always try that anyway.

    But it only works when there is real fear of Labour. Otherwise the Tories just end up looking ridiculous (cf. their 'demon eyes' posters).

    A point Nick underrecognises is that most of us carry our perceptions of the parties through our lives, with our outlook heavily shaped by the political events during our early adulthood. That's why it is never possible to re-invent a party completely; however 'moderate' Labour's current leader might be (and however secure, which is as much to the point), there will always be voter resistance based on events long past.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 28,226

    moonshine said:

    moonshine said:

    IanB2 said:

    moonshine said:

    And so another Sunday. Things feel a bit more optimistic than they did two Sundays ago or perhaps that is just me.

    On to more important matters. In a wild bit of the garden I just found what looks like a cow pat in a place where there have certainly been no cows. What could this be? A badger or fox that has eaten daffodils and now has the squits?

    If it's a badger, you'll have holes in your lawn.
    Plenty of badgers round here. Last summer they dug a latrine in the middle of the grass. I do my best now to have an evening “badger piss” somewhere on the fence line, as the only effective deterrent I could find on google.
    We have had an extensive cull round here nd as a result I haven't seen a badger in a couple of years. (The hedgehogs though say "Yay!"). Before that, they used to rip up a field behind the house every August. Looked like half of it had been ploughed. I was told the trick to stop them doing this was to throw handfuls of peanuts on the field. They don't need to disturb the turf to find them.
    A good tip.

    Yes it does seem unfortunate that we have forgotten why culling badgers was necessary. We lost the apex predators on these shores and to keep the ecosystem in balance had to do the job of culling ourselves. Pity the poor hedgehogs now large parts of the country are overrun by badgers.
    In our last house we had a wood at the end of the garden, and after we'd been there about twenty years we started to get badgers visiting the garden; we fed them all sorts of things and they never damaged the lawn.
    I never found the sett itself; the wood was private property. I often think that if we hadn't moved I could have put together a contract with the BBC or someone for wildlife filming!

    It's the one thing I miss about living there.
    We have a large side garden and a looooong back garden. There is a clear path - the badger M9 - the length of the back garden where badgers come out of the wooded ground behind the garden, across our grass, across the drive and out the gate into the side lane. Neighbour across the lane has tried to feed them, and I almost ran over one of them one night coming home.
    They're big things to run over, and tough with it. I did run over one once..... not one of my 'home badgers' and it survived at least long enough to run away onto the nearby golf course. There was a dent in the underside of the car though!
  • RochdalePioneersRochdalePioneers Posts: 18,515

    On Ukrainian refugees, it strikes me that there is a strong pattern with this government. It takes far too long to getting round to doing the right thing. But even once it gets there, it struggles to deliver the right thing competently. One can find repeated examples of this over the last couple of years - Covid loans, PPE equipment, test and trace, Channel crossings/asylum seekers, arrangements for exams, and so on. National Audit Office reports bear testament to a range of incompetence and wasting of taxpayers' money. In answer to the question 'is the government malign or just incompetent?', too often the answer is, as with refugees, both.

    That's a fair assessment and the government are totally responsible for bad policy decisions but I think some ( a lot?) of the incompetence shown in implementation is down to the Civil Service.
    Agreed, but who is responsible for Civil Service implementation? Answer - the government. One of the things Blair did right was recognise this, and he used people like Michael Barber and his Delivery Unit to ensure that the Civil Service actually delivered on government objectives. Blair and Brown also ensured that there was sufficient bandwidth to deliver on several priorities at the same time, something the current government really struggles with.
    There is a very simple explanation for this. The Blair government was really focused on delivery so created that unit to engage the power of the civil service to actually deliver. The Johnson government has no interest on delivery of safe arrival of Ukrainian women and children fleeing for their lives. They don't want them here. Many of their voters don't want them here. And the Big Dog himself is beholden to the backbenches because of his numerous indiscretions.

    So why would the civil service move heaven and earth here? There is no impetus to do so, no political will, no urgency. They are a tool to implement policy. And the policy is "meh".
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 44,329
    IanB2 said:

    Meanwhile, a Crufts update...last night's Toy Group finished with a rather fancy Yorkshire Terrier winner, who will go up against the Toy Poodle, Irish Terrier, Greyhound, Siberian Husky and Border Collie, plus the winner of this afternoon's Gundog judging, at this evenings Grand Finale Best of Show competition.

    The bias by the judges towards Yorkshire Terriers and Poodles is, er, disheartening.
  • FarooqFarooq Posts: 6,970
    Dura_Ace said:

    ydoethur said:



    Very much hope that Mrs DA's plan works and that they can come on to you. Are they friends or are you working with a charity? Either way, respect and best wishes.

    I made the offer to Mrs DA to exfiltrate them myself but her reply was, "They've been through enough without having to deal with you."

    Their story is not a happy one. They are the daughters of a friend of Mrs DA's Russian friend who lives in Kyiv. Their mother is a Ukrainian cop who is missing presumed shot by Russians. The father is of no account and hasn't been on the scene for years.
    I would have thought being driven by you would be more dangerous than being shelled by Russians
  • kjhkjh Posts: 6,677
    MrEd said:

    Re the attack against the base near Lviv this morning, one possibility is that Russia may be trying to bring in NATO involvement not because it would widen the war but because it would give them an excuse to exit / face save and / or allow Putin to survive the withdraw of Russia’s forces. Putin would claim that NATO has decidedly intervened for Ukraine and that, for the sake of ‘world peace’ etc, Russia has decided to stop the operation and pull back. He could then get his own version of the “stab in the back” theory with China undoubtedly giving him vocal support. He then uses NATO intervention to shore up support at home.

    Not a great scenario as it leaves him in place and keeps the conflict simmering long term but, short term…

    Ignoring our differences in politics you often come out with improbable, but interesting possible theories often with odds that are worth backing. I don't think you are right re above (as I assume is your view also) but it's an interesting idea because it is difficult to see what Putin's exit strategy is
  • CarnyxCarnyx Posts: 22,676
    Unpopular said:

    malcolmg said:

    DavidL said:

    HYUFD said:

    On topic I expect more LD tactical voting for Labour now Starmer has replaced Corbyn as there was in 1997 after Blair replaced Kinnock. There was already a lot of Labour tactical voting for the LDs in 2019 anyway

    Labour may also gain a bit from additional tactical voting by Tories in Scotland too in constituencies where they are clearly the leading unionist candidate. They are the closest Unionist party in my consituency of Dundee West, for example (albeit not particularly close) but there is no way on God's earth that I or anyone like me was ever going to vote for Corbyn whose stupidity was his only defence to a charge of treason.
    You think Dross of many faces and principles or millionaire Sarwar are better than Corbyn?
    Do you mean Dross the leader of the Scottish Conservatives who along with his party showed such principle in calling out the amoral dustbin that is our PM? I’m a bit worried that something has happened to him as he seems to have dropped off the radar as far as PB Unionists are concerned.
    For a wee while I thought the DRoss of old had gone, replaced by Douglas Ross man of principle. But now he has returned to DRoss, withdrawing his no confidence letter and sycophanting away again. Watch him mysteriously get elevated to the Lords after he steps down.
    I think he's shot his own fox if he wants to go to the Lords. Boris is not known for his magnanimity in victory or defeat, and that Ross called for him to go will not be forgotten. The man's now a spent force. Won't be trusted or able to have any influence on the Government, and he's ruined his one courageous political act. Precisely the worst of both worlds.
    Hmm, the same (re black mark in Mr Johnson's book) applies to most of the other Tory MSPs (not so much the MPs, some of whom know very well on what side the Johnsonian bread is greased). Will we see a MP as head of the Scons next?
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 27,341

    Dura_Ace said:

    ydoethur said:



    Very much hope that Mrs DA's plan works and that they can come on to you. Are they friends or are you working with a charity? Either way, respect and best wishes.

    I made the offer to Mrs DA to exfiltrate them myself but her reply was, "They've been through enough without having to deal with you."

    Their story is not a happy one. They are the daughters of a friend of Mrs DA's Russian friend who lives in Kyiv. Their mother is a Ukrainian cop who is missing presumed shot by Russians. The father is of no account and hasn't been on the scene for years.
    Christ, can’t really give that a like but thanks for a breath of actualité. Good luck and respect.
    Likewise
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 44,329
    “The United States had been their strongest ally, but now there’s a president in the White House who doesn’t particularly like them,” he explained. “I think Germany and France are also both weakening in their support for Ukraine’s independence, so [Ukraine is] in a really tough spot.”

    Meanwhile, the UK was training their special forces....
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 28,226

    IanB2 said:

    Meanwhile, a Crufts update...last night's Toy Group finished with a rather fancy Yorkshire Terrier winner, who will go up against the Toy Poodle, Irish Terrier, Greyhound, Siberian Husky and Border Collie, plus the winner of this afternoon's Gundog judging, at this evenings Grand Finale Best of Show competition.

    The bias by the judges towards Yorkshire Terriers and Poodles is, er, disheartening.
    We had an Irish terrier when I was 7-18. Very affectionate animal. I presume one no longer docks their tails.
  • MrEdMrEd Posts: 5,225
    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    Have you read that article in depth and paid attention to the language the author uses? It talks about, for starters, the Ukrainian defenders of Mariupol deliberately using civilians for cover and, most laughably, that Russia has a clear and consistent policy of not using middle strikes to ensure there are no civilian casualties. And those are not the only examples (a fair few examples of what they call Ukrainian ‘tropes’ chucked in there as well).
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 75,512
    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    This part below doesn't make any sense at all. It defies all logic that Ukraine would have decided to plan an attack on Donbas only when Russia conveniently had 200k troops close by and not at some other time. If they increased troops and shelling in the days leading up to the invasion a more simple explanation would seem to be they could see Russia had 200k toops readying for a potential invasion and were trying to shore things up.

    Was Kyiv planning an attack on the Donbas?

    Evidence for a second reason to attack is now dribbling into the light. This week Moscow announced its troops had captured plans for a forthcoming attack by those 60,000 men on the line of contact on LDNR, scheduled for early March. The plans may be genuine, or may be a provokatsiya, only time (and a lot of it) will tell, but some corroboration can be found in the hard fact that in the week leading up to Russia’s invasion Ukraine increased its bombardment of LDNR from a sporadic twenty shells per day to 1,500 to 2,000 (evidenced from OSCE daily reports). More corroboration can be found in the number of men stationed on the Line of Contact – the best third of Ukraine’s armed forces in fact – rather a lot to hold fifteen thousand lightly-armed rebels at bay
  • MrEdMrEd Posts: 5,225
    kjh said:

    MrEd said:

    Re the attack against the base near Lviv this morning, one possibility is that Russia may be trying to bring in NATO involvement not because it would widen the war but because it would give them an excuse to exit / face save and / or allow Putin to survive the withdraw of Russia’s forces. Putin would claim that NATO has decidedly intervened for Ukraine and that, for the sake of ‘world peace’ etc, Russia has decided to stop the operation and pull back. He could then get his own version of the “stab in the back” theory with China undoubtedly giving him vocal support. He then uses NATO intervention to shore up support at home.

    Not a great scenario as it leaves him in place and keeps the conflict simmering long term but, short term…

    Ignoring our differences in politics you often come out with improbable, but interesting possible theories often with odds that are worth backing. I don't think you are right re above (as I assume is your view also) but it's an interesting idea because it is difficult to see what Putin's exit strategy is
    The implausible doesn’t mean they are always wrong (not right)! Thanks for that. My view is you always need to see what others are thinking to work out what they will do. I think Russia knows it has messed this up. In fact, the strikes in the western part of the country in recent days, though I think not helped by the Mig fiasco emboldening Putin, seem to be Russia getting a bit more desperate in its tactics.
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 75,512
    Unpopular said:

    malcolmg said:

    DavidL said:

    HYUFD said:

    On topic I expect more LD tactical voting for Labour now Starmer has replaced Corbyn as there was in 1997 after Blair replaced Kinnock. There was already a lot of Labour tactical voting for the LDs in 2019 anyway

    Labour may also gain a bit from additional tactical voting by Tories in Scotland too in constituencies where they are clearly the leading unionist candidate. They are the closest Unionist party in my consituency of Dundee West, for example (albeit not particularly close) but there is no way on God's earth that I or anyone like me was ever going to vote for Corbyn whose stupidity was his only defence to a charge of treason.
    You think Dross of many faces and principles or millionaire Sarwar are better than Corbyn?
    Do you mean Dross the leader of the Scottish Conservatives who along with his party showed such principle in calling out the amoral dustbin that is our PM? I’m a bit worried that something has happened to him as he seems to have dropped off the radar as far as PB Unionists are concerned.
    For a wee while I thought the DRoss of old had gone, replaced by Douglas Ross man of principle. But now he has returned to DRoss, withdrawing his no confidence letter and sycophanting away again. Watch him mysteriously get elevated to the Lords after he steps down.
    I think he's shot his own fox if he wants to go to the Lords. Boris is not known for his magnanimity in victory or defeat, and that Ross called for him to go will not be forgotten. The man's now a spent force. Won't be trusted or able to have any influence on the Government, and he's ruined his one courageous political act. Precisely the worst of both worlds.
    Yes, there was really no upside to changing his tune. He could have equivocated about what he now felt should happen, which would have been better than essentially saying he thinks he is a terrible leader but should remain in place regardless, because I guess terrible leaders are what you want in a crisis.
  • LostPasswordLostPassword Posts: 7,937
    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    I find it very hard to believe that the front is at Poltava, and the Russian army is reaching the outskirts of Dnipro. We've had recent media reports - e.g. interviews with refugees recently evacuated from Sumy - in Poltava, where they've stopped at Poltava as a safe haven. There were recent reports of a rare missile attack on a shoe factory in Dnipro - not likely to be the picture if Russian forces were at the outskirts.

    Where Russia has taken territory in Ukraine this has been well-established by subsequent evidence posted online. If anything, western media reports have often hyped up Russian gains, as part of a "dramatic breaking news" narrative (and equally like to hype up Ukrainian counter-offensives for the same reason), yet there's been nothing about Russian forces at Poltava or Dnipro. That doesn't seem credible.

    Why do you accept the official Russian story of the war so uncritically?
  • Andy_JSAndy_JS Posts: 17,086
    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902
  • Big_G_NorthWalesBig_G_NorthWales Posts: 52,249
    edited March 13
    I did not realise it but apparently Ukraine is as big as France so no wonder Russia are in a mess, especially as misjudging the reception they would receive from Ukrainians
  • boulayboulay Posts: 1,159
    MrEd said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    Have you read that article in depth and paid attention to the language the author uses? It talks about, for starters, the Ukrainian defenders of Mariupol deliberately using civilians for cover and, most laughably, that Russia has a clear and consistent policy of not using middle strikes to ensure there are no civilian casualties. And those are not the only examples (a fair few examples of what they call Ukrainian ‘tropes’ chucked in there as well).
    It was also very disingenuous about the risk of false flag chemical attacks being a western plan to enable NATO to intervene amongst other dodgy commentary.

    It really read like an article pumped out of Russia but designed to look neutral and reasonable with plenty of nudges and winks about Ukrainian nationalism and threats by Ukraine.
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 75,512
    edited March 13
    kle4 said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    This part below doesn't make any sense at all. It defies all logic that Ukraine would have decided to plan an attack on Donbas only when Russia conveniently had 200k troops close by and not at some other time. If they increased troops and shelling in the days leading up to the invasion a more simple explanation would seem to be they could see Russia had 200k toops readying for a potential invasion and were trying to shore things up.

    Was Kyiv planning an attack on the Donbas?

    Evidence for a second reason to attack is now dribbling into the light. This week Moscow announced its troops had captured plans for a forthcoming attack by those 60,000 men on the line of contact on LDNR, scheduled for early March. The plans may be genuine, or may be a provokatsiya, only time (and a lot of it) will tell, but some corroboration can be found in the hard fact that in the week leading up to Russia’s invasion Ukraine increased its bombardment of LDNR from a sporadic twenty shells per day to 1,500 to 2,000 (evidenced from OSCE daily reports). More corroboration can be found in the number of men stationed on the Line of Contact – the best third of Ukraine’s armed forces in fact – rather a lot to hold fifteen thousand lightly-armed rebels at bay
    I do find a lot of the article compelling and interesting (without making it true), but that paragraph in particular just seems like a very strange conclusion to reach based on the facts it has chosen to present. 'More troops sent to an area to be targeted if there was an invasion' does not lead to a conclusion of 'they were planning their own assault' as obviously as the author seems to think. They haven't even contemplated another scenario (besides it just not being true) when it could be true and have alternative explanation.

    At another point it uncritically suggests accepting the Moscow description of territorial gains as more realistic without really getting into why that would be more reliable. It rightly points out the both sides will have not been telling the whole truth about things, but then without explanation says that Russian TV maps are more realistic.

    That might be so, I have no idea, but why does the author think it?

    It seems very concerned with proving how right its own predictions were (albeit not having thought an invasion would happen at all).
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 40,109

    IanB2 said:

    Meanwhile, a Crufts update...last night's Toy Group finished with a rather fancy Yorkshire Terrier winner, who will go up against the Toy Poodle, Irish Terrier, Greyhound, Siberian Husky and Border Collie, plus the winner of this afternoon's Gundog judging, at this evenings Grand Finale Best of Show competition.

    The bias by the judges towards Yorkshire Terriers and Poodles is, er, disheartening.
    The popular breeds will always have an edge - both directly, because they'll have had hundreds of entrants, so the Collie, for example, is the best chosen from over three hundred, whereas for rarer breeds it'll only be from a few. And indirectly from the audience, most people cheering the breed they own, and from the Kennel Club itself wanting the publicity that a popular breed winner brings (cf. the whippet that won last time) and wanting to remain grounded in the wider dog owning community (imagine for example if every year the winner came from some obscure rare breed). Whether having an attractive female handler brings any advantage, as is occasionally suggested, I wouldn't know.
  • Rob_downunderRob_downunder Posts: 106
    An Australian polling update for anyone who's interested.

    About 7 weeks out from the expected election, the latest Newspoll has Labor up 55/45 against the coalition on 2 party preferred.

    Anthony Albanese has also drawn level with Scott Morrison on the measure of Preferred Prime Minister, and has significantly better favourability ratings than the PM.

    There is some rumblings that the Liberals might try and dump Morrison in favour of Peter Dutton (the hard right defence secretary, But this seems unlikely given how close we are to the expected polling day.

    Ladbrokes have labor at $1.38 and the coalition $2.90.
  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 15,981
    Andy_JS said:

    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902

    Westminster, Surrey, Berkshire, and Hertordshire Conservative MPs be very afraid.
  • FishingFishing Posts: 3,458

    On Ukrainian refugees, it strikes me that there is a strong pattern with this government. It takes far too long to getting round to doing the right thing. But even once it gets there, it struggles to deliver the right thing competently. One can find repeated examples of this over the last couple of years - Covid loans, PPE equipment, test and trace, Channel crossings/asylum seekers, arrangements for exams, and so on. National Audit Office reports bear testament to a range of incompetence and wasting of taxpayers' money. In answer to the question 'is the government malign or just incompetent?', too often the answer is, as with refugees, both.

    Not just this government, sadly. It's been a common feature of British governments for decades. The idea that we've had a government that used to be a model of efficiency and benevolence is totally wrong.

    And not just British governments either. As the late PJ O'Rouke said, "Government is huge, stupid, greedy". The mystery is why so many want it to take over more and more parts of our lives, rather than sticking to the things it does well.
  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 36,877
    MrEd said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    Have you read that article in depth and paid attention to the language the author uses? It talks about, for starters, the Ukrainian defenders of Mariupol deliberately using civilians for cover and, most laughably, that Russia has a clear and consistent policy of not using middle strikes to ensure there are no civilian casualties. And those are not the only examples (a fair few examples of what they call Ukrainian ‘tropes’ chucked in there as well).
    It was indeed extremely pro Russian to say the least.
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 34,768
    MrEd said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    Have you read that article in depth and paid attention to the language the author uses? It talks about, for starters, the Ukrainian defenders of Mariupol deliberately using civilians for cover and, most laughably, that Russia has a clear and consistent policy of not using middle strikes to ensure there are no civilian casualties. And those are not the only examples (a fair few examples of what they call Ukrainian ‘tropes’ chucked in there as well).
    Yes it sounds like it has Russian "sympathies".

    But all part of it and as he says: how do they know. About both sides.
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 44,329
    edited March 13

    I did not realise it but apparently Ukraine is as big as France so no wonder Russia are in a mess, especially as misjudging the reception they would receive from Ukrainians

    And there they were, thinking those things slung over the Ukrainians shoulders were just the latest British and American mobile creme brulee makers....
  • LostPasswordLostPassword Posts: 7,937
    boulay said:

    MrEd said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    Have you read that article in depth and paid attention to the language the author uses? It talks about, for starters, the Ukrainian defenders of Mariupol deliberately using civilians for cover and, most laughably, that Russia has a clear and consistent policy of not using middle strikes to ensure there are no civilian casualties. And those are not the only examples (a fair few examples of what they call Ukrainian ‘tropes’ chucked in there as well).
    It was also very disingenuous about the risk of false flag chemical attacks being a western plan to enable NATO to intervene amongst other dodgy commentary.

    It really read like an article pumped out of Russia but designed to look neutral and reasonable with plenty of nudges and winks about Ukrainian nationalism and threats by Ukraine.
    I'm wondering now whether it's @TOPPING's favourite article precisely because it is so obviously ridiculous and biased - the point being that all the news we are receiving is ridiculous and biased, and he likes this one because it's so blatant.

    I think you can go a bit too far with the idea that, because both sides lie in war there is nothing that you can accept as the truth. I think there are ways to establish the reliability of competing claims, and to get some sense of the way that the war is going - which I would summarise as, hard going for Russia, but Ukraine still being pushed back, little sense of whether a change in momentum is possible or likely.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 27,341

    I did not realise it but apparently Ukraine is as big as France so no wonder Russia are in a mess, especially as misjudging the reception they would receive from Ukrainians

    And they were, thinking those things slung over the Ukrainians shoulders were just the latest British and American mobile creme brulee makers....
    They've produced a man portable version of the 344mm Lepage Creme Brûlée gun?
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 34,768
    edited March 13
    boulay said:

    MrEd said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    Have you read that article in depth and paid attention to the language the author uses? It talks about, for starters, the Ukrainian defenders of Mariupol deliberately using civilians for cover and, most laughably, that Russia has a clear and consistent policy of not using middle strikes to ensure there are no civilian casualties. And those are not the only examples (a fair few examples of what they call Ukrainian ‘tropes’ chucked in there as well).
    It was also very disingenuous about the risk of false flag chemical attacks being a western plan to enable NATO to intervene amongst other dodgy commentary.

    It really read like an article pumped out of Russia but designed to look neutral and reasonable with plenty of nudges and winks about Ukrainian nationalism and threats by Ukraine.
    I've no idea the provenance of the author but I'm guessing every single thing you know about the war comes from the Western media and sources sympathetic to Ukraine.

    So how can you say it's disingenuous.

    What he does say is that the much loved (on PB) narrative that Russia is losing militarily is not necessarily the case.
  • CarlottaVanceCarlottaVance Posts: 55,112

    I did not realise it but apparently Ukraine is as big as France so no wonder Russia are in a mess, especially as misjudging the reception they would receive from Ukrainians

    And twice the size of Italy…..
  • kle4kle4 Posts: 75,512
    edited March 13
    TOPPING said:

    MrEd said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    Have you read that article in depth and paid attention to the language the author uses? It talks about, for starters, the Ukrainian defenders of Mariupol deliberately using civilians for cover and, most laughably, that Russia has a clear and consistent policy of not using middle strikes to ensure there are no civilian casualties. And those are not the only examples (a fair few examples of what they call Ukrainian ‘tropes’ chucked in there as well).
    Yes it sounds like it has Russian "sympathies".

    But all part of it and as he says: how do they know. About both sides.
    Yet as noted he then accepts the Russian narrative uncriticially at several points. Which might be correct depending on the topic, but given the point about how to know about each side requires explanation if one is making a judgement which side is more reliable, as he has. It's one thing to point out UKrainian and western narratives are not all realistic, that's well made, but he's also assessing which is more true.
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 44,329

    I did not realise it but apparently Ukraine is as big as France so no wonder Russia are in a mess, especially as misjudging the reception they would receive from Ukrainians

    And they were, thinking those things slung over the Ukrainians shoulders were just the latest British and American mobile creme brulee makers....
    They've produced a man portable version of the 344mm Lepage Creme Brûlée gun?
    What chance did Putin stand?
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 34,768

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    I find it very hard to believe that the front is at Poltava, and the Russian army is reaching the outskirts of Dnipro. We've had recent media reports - e.g. interviews with refugees recently evacuated from Sumy - in Poltava, where they've stopped at Poltava as a safe haven. There were recent reports of a rare missile attack on a shoe factory in Dnipro - not likely to be the picture if Russian forces were at the outskirts.

    Where Russia has taken territory in Ukraine this has been well-established by subsequent evidence posted online. If anything, western media reports have often hyped up Russian gains, as part of a "dramatic breaking news" narrative (and equally like to hype up Ukrainian counter-offensives for the same reason), yet there's been nothing about Russian forces at Poltava or Dnipro. That doesn't seem credible.

    Why do you accept the official Russian story of the war so uncritically?
    Is that the official Russian story? I have no idea.
  • TheuniondivvieTheuniondivvie Posts: 33,553
    Carnyx said:

    Unpopular said:

    malcolmg said:

    DavidL said:

    HYUFD said:

    On topic I expect more LD tactical voting for Labour now Starmer has replaced Corbyn as there was in 1997 after Blair replaced Kinnock. There was already a lot of Labour tactical voting for the LDs in 2019 anyway

    Labour may also gain a bit from additional tactical voting by Tories in Scotland too in constituencies where they are clearly the leading unionist candidate. They are the closest Unionist party in my consituency of Dundee West, for example (albeit not particularly close) but there is no way on God's earth that I or anyone like me was ever going to vote for Corbyn whose stupidity was his only defence to a charge of treason.
    You think Dross of many faces and principles or millionaire Sarwar are better than Corbyn?
    Do you mean Dross the leader of the Scottish Conservatives who along with his party showed such principle in calling out the amoral dustbin that is our PM? I’m a bit worried that something has happened to him as he seems to have dropped off the radar as far as PB Unionists are concerned.
    For a wee while I thought the DRoss of old had gone, replaced by Douglas Ross man of principle. But now he has returned to DRoss, withdrawing his no confidence letter and sycophanting away again. Watch him mysteriously get elevated to the Lords after he steps down.
    I think he's shot his own fox if he wants to go to the Lords. Boris is not known for his magnanimity in victory or defeat, and that Ross called for him to go will not be forgotten. The man's now a spent force. Won't be trusted or able to have any influence on the Government, and he's ruined his one courageous political act. Precisely the worst of both worlds.
    Hmm, the same (re black mark in Mr Johnson's book) applies to most of the other Tory MSPs (not so much the MPs, some of whom know very well on what side the Johnsonian bread is greased). Will we see a MP as head of the Scons next?
    Surely some of these guys will have stuck to their guns?

  • LostPasswordLostPassword Posts: 7,937
    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    I find it very hard to believe that the front is at Poltava, and the Russian army is reaching the outskirts of Dnipro. We've had recent media reports - e.g. interviews with refugees recently evacuated from Sumy - in Poltava, where they've stopped at Poltava as a safe haven. There were recent reports of a rare missile attack on a shoe factory in Dnipro - not likely to be the picture if Russian forces were at the outskirts.

    Where Russia has taken territory in Ukraine this has been well-established by subsequent evidence posted online. If anything, western media reports have often hyped up Russian gains, as part of a "dramatic breaking news" narrative (and equally like to hype up Ukrainian counter-offensives for the same reason), yet there's been nothing about Russian forces at Poltava or Dnipro. That doesn't seem credible.

    Why do you accept the official Russian story of the war so uncritically?
    Is that the official Russian story? I have no idea.
    That's what your favourite article says.
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 34,768

    boulay said:

    MrEd said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    Have you read that article in depth and paid attention to the language the author uses? It talks about, for starters, the Ukrainian defenders of Mariupol deliberately using civilians for cover and, most laughably, that Russia has a clear and consistent policy of not using middle strikes to ensure there are no civilian casualties. And those are not the only examples (a fair few examples of what they call Ukrainian ‘tropes’ chucked in there as well).
    It was also very disingenuous about the risk of false flag chemical attacks being a western plan to enable NATO to intervene amongst other dodgy commentary.

    It really read like an article pumped out of Russia but designed to look neutral and reasonable with plenty of nudges and winks about Ukrainian nationalism and threats by Ukraine.
    I'm wondering now whether it's @TOPPING's favourite article precisely because it is so obviously ridiculous and biased - the point being that all the news we are receiving is ridiculous and biased, and he likes this one because it's so blatant.

    I think you can go a bit too far with the idea that, because both sides lie in war there is nothing that you can accept as the truth. I think there are ways to establish the reliability of competing claims, and to get some sense of the way that the war is going - which I would summarise as, hard going for Russia, but Ukraine still being pushed back, little sense of whether a change in momentum is possible or likely.
    I like it because it puts forward a view which is worth considering. That contrary to PB's strategists it isn't necessarily the case that Russia is going from one catastrophic defeat to another.

    Is it right? Who knows but it is well set out and more convincing than a 30-second Twitter clip.
  • boulayboulay Posts: 1,159

    boulay said:

    MrEd said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    Have you read that article in depth and paid attention to the language the author uses? It talks about, for starters, the Ukrainian defenders of Mariupol deliberately using civilians for cover and, most laughably, that Russia has a clear and consistent policy of not using middle strikes to ensure there are no civilian casualties. And those are not the only examples (a fair few examples of what they call Ukrainian ‘tropes’ chucked in there as well).
    It was also very disingenuous about the risk of false flag chemical attacks being a western plan to enable NATO to intervene amongst other dodgy commentary.

    It really read like an article pumped out of Russia but designed to look neutral and reasonable with plenty of nudges and winks about Ukrainian nationalism and threats by Ukraine.
    I'm wondering now whether it's @TOPPING's favourite article precisely because it is so obviously ridiculous and biased - the point being that all the news we are receiving is ridiculous and biased, and he likes this one because it's so blatant.

    I think you can go a bit too far with the idea that, because both sides lie in war there is nothing that you can accept as the truth. I think there are ways to establish the reliability of competing claims, and to get some sense of the way that the war is going - which I would summarise as, hard going for Russia, but Ukraine still being pushed back, little sense of whether a change in momentum is possible or likely.
    It does back up Topping’s wise and correct point the other day that nobody really knows what’s happening. We put together little pieces of evidence with various degrees of strength and mix them with our prejudices and hopes and maybe some Gin and come up with an idea of what we think is happening!

    But I would put the article down as nicely disguised propaganda expressed as thoughtful balanced critique.
  • Andy_JSAndy_JS Posts: 17,086
    edited March 13

    I did not realise it but apparently Ukraine is as big as France so no wonder Russia are in a mess, especially as misjudging the reception they would receive from Ukrainians

    I think it's slightly bigger than France which would made it the biggest country in Europe if you exclude Russia. There seems to be a bit of confusion about it: some sources I've looked at say France is bigger, some Ukraine.
  • bigjohnowlsbigjohnowls Posts: 18,826
    Andy_JS said:

    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902

    Another Jezza policy idea dismissed as Communist at the time enacted by a Tory Government
  • IanB2IanB2 Posts: 40,109
    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    It's an interesting and apparently well-informed analysis, on a site mostly run (it would appear, from the 'about us' section) in Europe by journalists either ex-British or with experience of working in the UK.

    But evidence of bias are plain to see. For example, the following extract, does anyone believe this is credible?

    Scariest of all each passing days contains (and increases) the risk that some event (most likely a false flag “chemical attack” arranged by Washington but attributed to Russia) pushes the peoples of Europe, the UK and the USA over the brink of active participation, to a full-blown Nato declaration of war. We can already see US news channels and government spokespeople, supported by UK sources, working to manufacture consent for that based on a chemical attack.

  • CarnyxCarnyx Posts: 22,676

    Carnyx said:

    Unpopular said:

    malcolmg said:

    DavidL said:

    HYUFD said:

    On topic I expect more LD tactical voting for Labour now Starmer has replaced Corbyn as there was in 1997 after Blair replaced Kinnock. There was already a lot of Labour tactical voting for the LDs in 2019 anyway

    Labour may also gain a bit from additional tactical voting by Tories in Scotland too in constituencies where they are clearly the leading unionist candidate. They are the closest Unionist party in my consituency of Dundee West, for example (albeit not particularly close) but there is no way on God's earth that I or anyone like me was ever going to vote for Corbyn whose stupidity was his only defence to a charge of treason.
    You think Dross of many faces and principles or millionaire Sarwar are better than Corbyn?
    Do you mean Dross the leader of the Scottish Conservatives who along with his party showed such principle in calling out the amoral dustbin that is our PM? I’m a bit worried that something has happened to him as he seems to have dropped off the radar as far as PB Unionists are concerned.
    For a wee while I thought the DRoss of old had gone, replaced by Douglas Ross man of principle. But now he has returned to DRoss, withdrawing his no confidence letter and sycophanting away again. Watch him mysteriously get elevated to the Lords after he steps down.
    I think he's shot his own fox if he wants to go to the Lords. Boris is not known for his magnanimity in victory or defeat, and that Ross called for him to go will not be forgotten. The man's now a spent force. Won't be trusted or able to have any influence on the Government, and he's ruined his one courageous political act. Precisely the worst of both worlds.
    Hmm, the same (re black mark in Mr Johnson's book) applies to most of the other Tory MSPs (not so much the MPs, some of whom know very well on what side the Johnsonian bread is greased). Will we see a MP as head of the Scons next?
    Surely some of these guys will have stuck to their guns?

    What I'm actually unclear about is what happens when the Scons MSPs have a different idea about their leader from Messrs Johnson and R-M? Do they elect what Ruth Davidson pretended to call the LotO and Shadow Cabinet at Holyrood as they wish, or do they follow orders from London HQ?
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 34,768
    edited March 13
    boulay said:

    boulay said:

    MrEd said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    Have you read that article in depth and paid attention to the language the author uses? It talks about, for starters, the Ukrainian defenders of Mariupol deliberately using civilians for cover and, most laughably, that Russia has a clear and consistent policy of not using middle strikes to ensure there are no civilian casualties. And those are not the only examples (a fair few examples of what they call Ukrainian ‘tropes’ chucked in there as well).
    It was also very disingenuous about the risk of false flag chemical attacks being a western plan to enable NATO to intervene amongst other dodgy commentary.

    It really read like an article pumped out of Russia but designed to look neutral and reasonable with plenty of nudges and winks about Ukrainian nationalism and threats by Ukraine.
    I'm wondering now whether it's @TOPPING's favourite article precisely because it is so obviously ridiculous and biased - the point being that all the news we are receiving is ridiculous and biased, and he likes this one because it's so blatant.

    I think you can go a bit too far with the idea that, because both sides lie in war there is nothing that you can accept as the truth. I think there are ways to establish the reliability of competing claims, and to get some sense of the way that the war is going - which I would summarise as, hard going for Russia, but Ukraine still being pushed back, little sense of whether a change in momentum is possible or likely.
    It does back up Topping’s wise and correct point the other day that nobody really knows what’s happening. We put together little pieces of evidence with various degrees of strength and mix them with our prejudices and hopes and maybe some Gin and come up with an idea of what we think is happening!

    But I would put the article down as nicely disguised propaganda expressed as thoughtful balanced critique.
    Fair enough he does give some sources but I can't be bothered to investigate further right now.

    Interesting also about evidence from maps which @NickPalmer yesterday said was a good guide you what is going on.
    .
  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 36,877
    TOPPING said:

    boulay said:

    MrEd said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    Have you read that article in depth and paid attention to the language the author uses? It talks about, for starters, the Ukrainian defenders of Mariupol deliberately using civilians for cover and, most laughably, that Russia has a clear and consistent policy of not using middle strikes to ensure there are no civilian casualties. And those are not the only examples (a fair few examples of what they call Ukrainian ‘tropes’ chucked in there as well).
    It was also very disingenuous about the risk of false flag chemical attacks being a western plan to enable NATO to intervene amongst other dodgy commentary.

    It really read like an article pumped out of Russia but designed to look neutral and reasonable with plenty of nudges and winks about Ukrainian nationalism and threats by Ukraine.
    I've no idea the provenance of the author but I'm guessing every single thing you know about the war comes from the Western media and sources sympathetic to Ukraine.

    So how can you say it's disingenuous.

    What he does say is that the much loved (on PB) narrative that Russia is losing militarily is not necessarily the case.
    For sure it is hard to believe what either side say though it is hard to see it ending well for Ukraine given the disparity in size of military etc, even if it has shown the Russian's to be pretty crap so far. Longer term and financially Russia are well and truly f&&Ked and it was a blunder of momentous size and stupidity.
  • ydoethurydoethur Posts: 48,792
    edited March 13

    Dura_Ace said:

    ydoethur said:



    Very much hope that Mrs DA's plan works and that they can come on to you. Are they friends or are you working with a charity? Either way, respect and best wishes.

    I made the offer to Mrs DA to exfiltrate them myself but her reply was, "They've been through enough without having to deal with you."

    Their story is not a happy one. They are the daughters of a friend of Mrs DA's Russian friend who lives in Kyiv. Their mother is a Ukrainian cop who is missing presumed shot by Russians. The father is of no account and hasn't been on the scene for years.
    Christ, can’t really give that a like but thanks for a breath of actualité. Good luck and respect.
    The good thing about you making that comment was that we could all like it instead to show our agreement.

    What a truly horrible story and serious kudos to DA and Mrs DA for offering to help.

    (I have to say, I did think when I read the first comment it was as well Mrs DA proposed to do the driving though!)
  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 36,877

    Carnyx said:

    Unpopular said:

    malcolmg said:

    DavidL said:

    HYUFD said:

    On topic I expect more LD tactical voting for Labour now Starmer has replaced Corbyn as there was in 1997 after Blair replaced Kinnock. There was already a lot of Labour tactical voting for the LDs in 2019 anyway

    Labour may also gain a bit from additional tactical voting by Tories in Scotland too in constituencies where they are clearly the leading unionist candidate. They are the closest Unionist party in my consituency of Dundee West, for example (albeit not particularly close) but there is no way on God's earth that I or anyone like me was ever going to vote for Corbyn whose stupidity was his only defence to a charge of treason.
    You think Dross of many faces and principles or millionaire Sarwar are better than Corbyn?
    Do you mean Dross the leader of the Scottish Conservatives who along with his party showed such principle in calling out the amoral dustbin that is our PM? I’m a bit worried that something has happened to him as he seems to have dropped off the radar as far as PB Unionists are concerned.
    For a wee while I thought the DRoss of old had gone, replaced by Douglas Ross man of principle. But now he has returned to DRoss, withdrawing his no confidence letter and sycophanting away again. Watch him mysteriously get elevated to the Lords after he steps down.
    I think he's shot his own fox if he wants to go to the Lords. Boris is not known for his magnanimity in victory or defeat, and that Ross called for him to go will not be forgotten. The man's now a spent force. Won't be trusted or able to have any influence on the Government, and he's ruined his one courageous political act. Precisely the worst of both worlds.
    Hmm, the same (re black mark in Mr Johnson's book) applies to most of the other Tory MSPs (not so much the MPs, some of whom know very well on what side the Johnsonian bread is greased). Will we see a MP as head of the Scons next?
    Surely some of these guys will have stuck to their guns?

    None of those lickspittle idiots would know principles if they smacked them in the face. They will just apply whatever allows them to remain at the trough.
  • TheuniondivvieTheuniondivvie Posts: 33,553
    Andy_JS said:

    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902

    Headline chasing guff, typical of this mob.

    Prediction, oligarch houses seized will equal the number of refugees housed in them, 0.
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 34,768
    IanB2 said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    It's an interesting and apparently well-informed analysis, on a site mostly run (it would appear, from the 'about us' section) in Europe by journalists either ex-British or with experience of working in the UK.

    But evidence of bias are plain to see. For example, the following extract, does anyone believe this is credible?

    Scariest of all each passing days contains (and increases) the risk that some event (most likely a false flag “chemical attack” arranged by Washington but attributed to Russia) pushes the peoples of Europe, the UK and the USA over the brink of active participation, to a full-blown Nato declaration of war. We can already see US news channels and government spokespeople, supported by UK sources, working to manufacture consent for that based on a chemical attack.

    I wouldn't disagree at all. And yes that passage does look "interesting".
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 27,341
    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    I find it very hard to believe that the front is at Poltava, and the Russian army is reaching the outskirts of Dnipro. We've had recent media reports - e.g. interviews with refugees recently evacuated from Sumy - in Poltava, where they've stopped at Poltava as a safe haven. There were recent reports of a rare missile attack on a shoe factory in Dnipro - not likely to be the picture if Russian forces were at the outskirts.

    Where Russia has taken territory in Ukraine this has been well-established by subsequent evidence posted online. If anything, western media reports have often hyped up Russian gains, as part of a "dramatic breaking news" narrative (and equally like to hype up Ukrainian counter-offensives for the same reason), yet there's been nothing about Russian forces at Poltava or Dnipro. That doesn't seem credible.

    Why do you accept the official Russian story of the war so uncritically?
    Is that the official Russian story? I have no idea.
    From @viewcode excellent post yesterday

    image

    The map from this story shows more Russian held ground than any map I've seen, anywhere...

    image

  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 36,877
    Seems very pleasant on here today, the neer do well cockroaches must be having a lie in.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 27,341
    Incidentally, with apologies/thanks to @viewcode for theft -

    Links Maps Other
    • The British ones that PBers interested in the military read (Nicholas Drummond, Thin Pinstriped Line) were slow off the mark and some of them (UK Land Power, The Wavell Room) may never do so due to cadence, but I thought I'd mention them anyway as worthwhile.
    • If you want to post links to twitter, you might want to do so via nitter (nitter.net) which obviates the need to login to Twitter
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 34,768

    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    I find it very hard to believe that the front is at Poltava, and the Russian army is reaching the outskirts of Dnipro. We've had recent media reports - e.g. interviews with refugees recently evacuated from Sumy - in Poltava, where they've stopped at Poltava as a safe haven. There were recent reports of a rare missile attack on a shoe factory in Dnipro - not likely to be the picture if Russian forces were at the outskirts.

    Where Russia has taken territory in Ukraine this has been well-established by subsequent evidence posted online. If anything, western media reports have often hyped up Russian gains, as part of a "dramatic breaking news" narrative (and equally like to hype up Ukrainian counter-offensives for the same reason), yet there's been nothing about Russian forces at Poltava or Dnipro. That doesn't seem credible.

    Why do you accept the official Russian story of the war so uncritically?
    Is that the official Russian story? I have no idea.
    From @viewcode excellent post yesterday

    image

    The map from this story shows more Russian held ground than any map I've seen, anywhere...

    image

    Yes it seems to.
  • Big_G_NorthWalesBig_G_NorthWales Posts: 52,249
    malcolmg said:

    Seems very pleasant on here today, the neer do well cockroaches must be having a lie in.

    Maybe being kinder to each other may catch on Malc
  • noneoftheabovenoneoftheabove Posts: 14,181
    Andy_JS said:

    I did not realise it but apparently Ukraine is as big as France so no wonder Russia are in a mess, especially as misjudging the reception they would receive from Ukrainians

    I think it's slightly bigger than France which would made it the biggest country in Europe if you exclude Russia. There seems to be a bit of confusion about it: some sources I've looked at say France is bigger, some Ukraine.
    Putin likes the ones where it is a fair bit smaller.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 27,341
    malcolmg said:

    Seems very pleasant on here today, the neer do well cockroaches must be having a lie in.

    You really, really need to up your game. Lazily throwing insults like a teenager throwing Coke cans out of car windows - you can do so much better.

    Pick up the trash, have a shot of cask strength turnip juice and GET! CRACKING!
  • another_richardanother_richard Posts: 22,912
    edited March 13
    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    I find it very hard to believe that the front is at Poltava, and the Russian army is reaching the outskirts of Dnipro. We've had recent media reports - e.g. interviews with refugees recently evacuated from Sumy - in Poltava, where they've stopped at Poltava as a safe haven. There were recent reports of a rare missile attack on a shoe factory in Dnipro - not likely to be the picture if Russian forces were at the outskirts.

    Where Russia has taken territory in Ukraine this has been well-established by subsequent evidence posted online. If anything, western media reports have often hyped up Russian gains, as part of a "dramatic breaking news" narrative (and equally like to hype up Ukrainian counter-offensives for the same reason), yet there's been nothing about Russian forces at Poltava or Dnipro. That doesn't seem credible.

    Why do you accept the official Russian story of the war so uncritically?
    Is that the official Russian story? I have no idea.
    From @viewcode excellent post yesterday

    image

    The map from this story shows more Russian held ground than any map I've seen, anywhere...

    image

    Yes it seems to.
    Your map shows Kharkiv as completely surrounded by Russia.
  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 15,981

    Andy_JS said:

    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902

    Another Jezza policy idea dismissed as Communist at the time enacted by a Tory Government
    I'll believe that one when I see it.

    Genteel Englanders don't want tenement dwellers from Odessa turning executive housing in Virginia Water and St George's Hill, Weybridge into the Eastern European multiple occupancy ghettos of Shrewsbury or Boston.

    It's one thing Russians having a brace of his and hers new supercars cluttering up the gravelled driveway, quite another to have it full of two dozen twenty year old Octavias.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 28,226

    Andy_JS said:

    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902

    Headline chasing guff, typical of this mob.

    Prediction, oligarch houses seized will equal the number of refugees housed in them, 0.
    Presumably there are staff in them though? British? Filipino? Russian?
  • NorthstarNorthstar Posts: 138
    IanB2 said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    It's an interesting and apparently well-informed analysis, on a site mostly run (it would appear, from the 'about us' section) in Europe by journalists either ex-British or with experience of working in the UK.

    But evidence of bias are plain to see. For example, the following extract, does anyone believe this is credible?

    Scariest of all each passing days contains (and increases) the risk that some event (most likely a false flag “chemical attack” arranged by Washington but attributed to Russia) pushes the peoples of Europe, the UK and the USA over the brink of active participation, to a full-blown Nato declaration of war. We can already see US news channels and government spokespeople, supported by UK sources, working to manufacture consent for that based on a chemical attack.

    Strange to see such obvious junk being circulated as a reputable source
  • FrancisUrquhartFrancisUrquhart Posts: 71,291
    edited March 13
    Andy_JS said:

    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902

    Not going to happen. Before you even start to consider legal issues, i.e. these properties aren't / can't be "seized" by the state without due legal process (and that isn't the route the government have gone down as t the moment), the costs of running such homes is eye watering. The Oligarchs have been cut off from even being able to pay the electricity bill.
  • TheuniondivvieTheuniondivvie Posts: 33,553
    Planty on Desert Island Discs, excellent variety of music chosen as one would expect. That ABBA track was a bit of a surprise though..
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 34,768
    edited March 13

    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    I find it very hard to believe that the front is at Poltava, and the Russian army is reaching the outskirts of Dnipro. We've had recent media reports - e.g. interviews with refugees recently evacuated from Sumy - in Poltava, where they've stopped at Poltava as a safe haven. There were recent reports of a rare missile attack on a shoe factory in Dnipro - not likely to be the picture if Russian forces were at the outskirts.

    Where Russia has taken territory in Ukraine this has been well-established by subsequent evidence posted online. If anything, western media reports have often hyped up Russian gains, as part of a "dramatic breaking news" narrative (and equally like to hype up Ukrainian counter-offensives for the same reason), yet there's been nothing about Russian forces at Poltava or Dnipro. That doesn't seem credible.

    Why do you accept the official Russian story of the war so uncritically?
    Is that the official Russian story? I have no idea.
    From @viewcode excellent post yesterday

    image

    The map from this story shows more Russian held ground than any map I've seen, anywhere...

    image

    Yes it seems to.
    Your map shows Kharkiv as completely surrounded by Russia.
    Right. Well that isn't the case is it.

    Edit: I see you changed your post. Is it not surrounded.
  • FrankBoothFrankBooth Posts: 6,031
    One Russian plan a few years ago was annex Ukraine with Poland getting the west and Russia the east. Poland could then be the largest country in Europe excluding Russia. We need to understand that the Russia's leaders' 21st century is our 19th century.
  • MalmesburyMalmesbury Posts: 27,341

    Andy_JS said:

    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902

    Not going to happen. Before you even start ti consider legal issues, the costs of running such homes is eye watering and Oligarchs have been cut off from even being able to pay the electricity bill.
    You can start paying the bill on someone else's house with remarkable ease.
  • MarqueeMarkMarqueeMark Posts: 44,329
    IanB2 said:

    IanB2 said:

    Meanwhile, a Crufts update...last night's Toy Group finished with a rather fancy Yorkshire Terrier winner, who will go up against the Toy Poodle, Irish Terrier, Greyhound, Siberian Husky and Border Collie, plus the winner of this afternoon's Gundog judging, at this evenings Grand Finale Best of Show competition.

    The bias by the judges towards Yorkshire Terriers and Poodles is, er, disheartening.
    The popular breeds will always have an edge - both directly, because they'll have had hundreds of entrants, so the Collie, for example, is the best chosen from over three hundred, whereas for rarer breeds it'll only be from a few. And indirectly from the audience, most people cheering the breed they own, and from the Kennel Club itself wanting the publicity that a popular breed winner brings (cf. the whippet that won last time) and wanting to remain grounded in the wider dog owning community (imagine for example if every year the winner came from some obscure rare breed). Whether having an attractive female handler brings any advantage, as is occasionally suggested, I wouldn't know.
    Obscure rare breeds need a leg up, when it seems everybody now aspires to own an "oodle" of some flavour.
  • Andy_JSAndy_JS Posts: 17,086
    edited March 13
    About 55% of UK energy is wind, solar or hydro atm.

    https://gridwatch.templar.co.uk
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 34,768
    Northstar said:

    IanB2 said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    It's an interesting and apparently well-informed analysis, on a site mostly run (it would appear, from the 'about us' section) in Europe by journalists either ex-British or with experience of working in the UK.

    But evidence of bias are plain to see. For example, the following extract, does anyone believe this is credible?

    Scariest of all each passing days contains (and increases) the risk that some event (most likely a false flag “chemical attack” arranged by Washington but attributed to Russia) pushes the peoples of Europe, the UK and the USA over the brink of active participation, to a full-blown Nato declaration of war. We can already see US news channels and government spokespeople, supported by UK sources, working to manufacture consent for that based on a chemical attack.

    Strange to see such obvious junk being circulated as a reputable source
    Again I'm guessing that everything you know about the war comes from the Western media and tweets sympathetic to Ukraine.
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 28,226

    Andy_JS said:

    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902

    Not going to happen. Before you even start to consider legal issues, i.e. these properties aren't / can't be "seized" by the state without due legal process (and that isn't the route the government have gone down as t the moment), the costs of running such homes is eye watering. The Oligarchs have been cut off from even being able to pay the electricity bill.
    Rent them out? Monies paid to the butlers account?
  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 36,877

    malcolmg said:

    Seems very pleasant on here today, the neer do well cockroaches must be having a lie in.

    Maybe being kinder to each other may catch on Malc
    It does indeed G, you nearly always find that to be the case. Unfortunately there are always exceptions.
  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 15,981
    Andy_JS said:

    About 55% of UK energy is wind, solar or hydro atm.

    https://gridwatch.templar.co.uk

    It would be even more if HMG give @MarqueeMark his Swansea Bay barrage.

    I am also quite content to look out of my windows and see 1,000 wind turbines in the Bristol Channel
  • FrancisUrquhartFrancisUrquhart Posts: 71,291
    edited March 13

    Andy_JS said:

    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902

    Not going to happen. Before you even start to consider legal issues, i.e. these properties aren't / can't be "seized" by the state without due legal process (and that isn't the route the government have gone down as t the moment), the costs of running such homes is eye watering. The Oligarchs have been cut off from even being able to pay the electricity bill.
    Rent them out? Monies paid to the butlers account?
    But as far as i understand the government haven't "seized" these properties as that requires a very lengthy legal process proving they are proceeds of criminal behaviour.

    What they have instead done is bar individuals from being able to form contracts with them i.e. electricity company can't have them as a customer, a gardening company provide services, etc.
  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 36,877

    Andy_JS said:

    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902

    Headline chasing guff, typical of this mob.

    Prediction, oligarch houses seized will equal the number of refugees housed in them, 0.
    Presumably there are staff in them though? British? Filipino? Russian?
    If they are still getting paid.
  • another_richardanother_richard Posts: 22,912
    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    I find it very hard to believe that the front is at Poltava, and the Russian army is reaching the outskirts of Dnipro. We've had recent media reports - e.g. interviews with refugees recently evacuated from Sumy - in Poltava, where they've stopped at Poltava as a safe haven. There were recent reports of a rare missile attack on a shoe factory in Dnipro - not likely to be the picture if Russian forces were at the outskirts.

    Where Russia has taken territory in Ukraine this has been well-established by subsequent evidence posted online. If anything, western media reports have often hyped up Russian gains, as part of a "dramatic breaking news" narrative (and equally like to hype up Ukrainian counter-offensives for the same reason), yet there's been nothing about Russian forces at Poltava or Dnipro. That doesn't seem credible.

    Why do you accept the official Russian story of the war so uncritically?
    Is that the official Russian story? I have no idea.
    From @viewcode excellent post yesterday

    image

    The map from this story shows more Russian held ground than any map I've seen, anywhere...

    image

    Yes it seems to.
    Your map shows Kharkiv as completely surrounded by Russia.
    Right. Well that isn't the case is it.

    Edit: I see you changed your post. Is it not surrounded.
    Not as I'm aware.

    And there's this BBC report from two days ago:

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-60693166
  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 36,877

    malcolmg said:

    Seems very pleasant on here today, the neer do well cockroaches must be having a lie in.

    You really, really need to up your game. Lazily throwing insults like a teenager throwing Coke cans out of car windows - you can do so much better.

    Pick up the trash, have a shot of cask strength turnip juice and GET! CRACKING!
    I am my normal very pleasant self as you see Malmesbury, it is amazing what happens when you converse with like minded gentlemen and Ladies rather than riffraff.
  • BlancheLivermoreBlancheLivermore Posts: 2,748
    This could be really important..

    Ramez Name
    @ramez
    This is an incredible analysis of how Putin's invasion of the world will re-order the global world, largely for the better. By a leading Chinese policy thinker, in Shanghai, originally written in Chinese. Brief thread, but read the whole thing. https://uscnpm.org/2022/03/12/hu-wei-russia-ukraine-war-china-choice/ 1/
    uscnpm.org
    Possible Outcomes of the Russo-Ukrainian War and China's Choice - U.S.-China Perception Monitor
    Hu Wei is the vice-chairman of the Public Policy Research Center of the Counselor's Office of the State Council, the chairman of Shanghai Public Policy Research Association, the chairman of the Academic Committee of the Chahar Institute, a professor, and a doctoral supervisor.

    He writes that Putin's invasion of Ukraine will lead to:
    1. Possibly an escalation of the war beyond Ukraine.
    2. Certainly Putin's degeat.
    3. The United States regaining leadership in the Western world, and the West being more united.
    4. A new "Iron Curtain" falling globally, this time dividing democracies from authoritarian regimes, and extending into Asia.
    5. Growth in the power of the West, in both military strength and the strength and importance of western institutions. Greater hard power and soft.
    6. Further isolation of China, as the US, Europe, and also Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and Australia turn against China.

    "China will not only be encircled militarily ... but also challenged by Western values and systems."

    He closes by saying that China has 1-2 WEEKS in which to make a choice. And basically says that China should choose the West, and use its influence over Putin to end the war and bring him to heel. It says that China is the only nation that can. I don't disagree.

    The whole thing is incredible, and very clearly argued. Read the whole thing here in the English translation. It's not more than a 10 minute read.

    https://twitter.com/ramez/status/1502895847301812224
  • IshmaelZIshmaelZ Posts: 17,146
    Northstar said:

    IanB2 said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    It's an interesting and apparently well-informed analysis, on a site mostly run (it would appear, from the 'about us' section) in Europe by journalists either ex-British or with experience of working in the UK.

    But evidence of bias are plain to see. For example, the following extract, does anyone believe this is credible?

    Scariest of all each passing days contains (and increases) the risk that some event (most likely a false flag “chemical attack” arranged by Washington but attributed to Russia) pushes the peoples of Europe, the UK and the USA over the brink of active participation, to a full-blown Nato declaration of war. We can already see US news channels and government spokespeople, supported by UK sources, working to manufacture consent for that based on a chemical attack.

    Strange to see such obvious junk being circulated as a reputable source
    Because, what, the USA are such good guys in the movies? I see no reason at all to doubt that if they wanted the war to escalate they would arrange an escalating event to take place. Look at iraq: their pretext was meant to be Blix, and when Blix didn't come up with the goods they got bored of waitingand went in anyway. I don't see a huge step from that to a false flag arrangement
  • OldKingColeOldKingCole Posts: 28,226
    malcolmg said:

    Andy_JS said:

    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902

    Headline chasing guff, typical of this mob.

    Prediction, oligarch houses seized will equal the number of refugees housed in them, 0.
    Presumably there are staff in them though? British? Filipino? Russian?
    If they are still getting paid.
    Good question, Malc. Like the poor sods on ships whose owners have gone bust, sitting off West Wales for months.
  • TOPPINGTOPPING Posts: 34,768

    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    I find it very hard to believe that the front is at Poltava, and the Russian army is reaching the outskirts of Dnipro. We've had recent media reports - e.g. interviews with refugees recently evacuated from Sumy - in Poltava, where they've stopped at Poltava as a safe haven. There were recent reports of a rare missile attack on a shoe factory in Dnipro - not likely to be the picture if Russian forces were at the outskirts.

    Where Russia has taken territory in Ukraine this has been well-established by subsequent evidence posted online. If anything, western media reports have often hyped up Russian gains, as part of a "dramatic breaking news" narrative (and equally like to hype up Ukrainian counter-offensives for the same reason), yet there's been nothing about Russian forces at Poltava or Dnipro. That doesn't seem credible.

    Why do you accept the official Russian story of the war so uncritically?
    Is that the official Russian story? I have no idea.
    From @viewcode excellent post yesterday

    image

    The map from this story shows more Russian held ground than any map I've seen, anywhere...

    image

    Yes it seems to.
    Your map shows Kharkiv as completely surrounded by Russia.
    Right. Well that isn't the case is it.

    Edit: I see you changed your post. Is it not surrounded.
    Not as I'm aware.

    And there's this BBC report from two days ago:

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-60693166
    It paints a picture of a city under constant attack not to say besieged. Perhaps the map meant that.

    And it is a government owned Western media report.
  • CarnyxCarnyx Posts: 22,676
    edited March 13

    Andy_JS said:

    "Oligarchs’ homes could be used to house refugees in the UK
    The homes of sanctions oligarchs could be used to house refugees from the war in Ukraine, a top UK minister says.

    Speaking to the BBC’s Sophie Raworth, Secretary of State for Levelling up, Housing, and Communities Michael Gove said: “I want to explore an option which would allow us to use the homes and properties of sanctioned individuals, for as long as they are sanctioned, for humanitarian and other purposes."

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/live/world-europe-60717902

    Not going to happen. Before you even start to consider legal issues, i.e. these properties aren't / can't be "seized" by the state without due legal process (and that isn't the route the government have gone down as t the moment), the costs of running such homes is eye watering. The Oligarchs have been cut off from even being able to pay the electricity bill.
    Rent them out? Monies paid to the butlers account?
    But as far as i understand the government haven't "seized" these properties as that requires a very lengthy legal process proving they are proceeds of criminal behaviour.

    What they have instead done is bar individuals from being able to form contracts with them i.e. electricity company can't have them as a customer, a gardening company provide services, etc.
    []
  • CarnyxCarnyx Posts: 22,676
    malcolmg said:

    malcolmg said:

    Seems very pleasant on here today, the neer do well cockroaches must be having a lie in.

    You really, really need to up your game. Lazily throwing insults like a teenager throwing Coke cans out of car windows - you can do so much better.

    Pick up the trash, have a shot of cask strength turnip juice and GET! CRACKING!
    I am my normal very pleasant self as you see Malmesbury, it is amazing what happens when you converse with like minded gentlemen and Ladies rather than riffraff.
    Morning, Malky; slightly damper over here earlier but brightening up.
  • MexicanpeteMexicanpete Posts: 15,981

    Planty on Desert Island Discs, excellent variety of music chosen as one would expect. That ABBA track was a bit of a surprise though..

    Is it Thom from the PB house band today?
  • malcolmgmalcolmg Posts: 36,877
    I must head off to enjoy a bit of gardening in the spring sunshine , toodlepip.
  • another_richardanother_richard Posts: 22,912
    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    I find it very hard to believe that the front is at Poltava, and the Russian army is reaching the outskirts of Dnipro. We've had recent media reports - e.g. interviews with refugees recently evacuated from Sumy - in Poltava, where they've stopped at Poltava as a safe haven. There were recent reports of a rare missile attack on a shoe factory in Dnipro - not likely to be the picture if Russian forces were at the outskirts.

    Where Russia has taken territory in Ukraine this has been well-established by subsequent evidence posted online. If anything, western media reports have often hyped up Russian gains, as part of a "dramatic breaking news" narrative (and equally like to hype up Ukrainian counter-offensives for the same reason), yet there's been nothing about Russian forces at Poltava or Dnipro. That doesn't seem credible.

    Why do you accept the official Russian story of the war so uncritically?
    Is that the official Russian story? I have no idea.
    From @viewcode excellent post yesterday

    image

    The map from this story shows more Russian held ground than any map I've seen, anywhere...

    image

    Yes it seems to.
    Your map shows Kharkiv as completely surrounded by Russia.
    Right. Well that isn't the case is it.

    Edit: I see you changed your post. Is it not surrounded.
    Not as I'm aware.

    And there's this BBC report from two days ago:

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-60693166
    It paints a picture of a city under constant attack not to say besieged. Perhaps the map meant that.

    And it is a government owned Western media report.
    Your map shows Russian occupation dozens of miles beyond Kharkiv.

    Perhaps you should extend your scepticism of media reports to the pro-Russian stuff you have happily posted this morning.
  • Big_G_NorthWalesBig_G_NorthWales Posts: 52,249
    edited March 13

    Andy_JS said:

    About 55% of UK energy is wind, solar or hydro atm.

    https://gridwatch.templar.co.uk

    It would be even more if HMG give @MarqueeMark his Swansea Bay barrage.

    I am also quite content to look out of my windows and see 1,000 wind turbines in the Bristol Channel
    And our tidal lagoon between Llandudno and Prestatyn

    https://www.northwalespioneer.co.uk/news/19149297.conwy-councillors-keen-push-ahead-tidal-lagoon-plans-north-wales/
  • NorthstarNorthstar Posts: 138
    IshmaelZ said:

    Northstar said:

    IanB2 said:

    TOPPING said:

    Everyone has their favourite article on the conflict and this one is I think pretty good.

    https://www.intellinews.com/eastern-ukraine-has-almost-completely-fallen-but-putin-now-needs-a-peace-fast-237784/?source=ukraine

    TL;DR we don't know much but what we do know doesn't necessarily align with Western media reports.

    It's an interesting and apparently well-informed analysis, on a site mostly run (it would appear, from the 'about us' section) in Europe by journalists either ex-British or with experience of working in the UK.

    But evidence of bias are plain to see. For example, the following extract, does anyone believe this is credible?

    Scariest of all each passing days contains (and increases) the risk that some event (most likely a false flag “chemical attack” arranged by Washington but attributed to Russia) pushes the peoples of Europe, the UK and the USA over the brink of active participation, to a full-blown Nato declaration of war. We can already see US news channels and government spokespeople, supported by UK sources, working to manufacture consent for that based on a chemical attack.

    Strange to see such obvious junk being circulated as a reputable source
    Because, what, the USA are such good guys in the movies? I see no reason at all to doubt that if they wanted the war to escalate they would arrange an escalating event to take place. Look at iraq: their pretext was meant to be Blix, and when Blix didn't come up with the goods they got bored of waitingand went in anyway. I don't see a huge step from that to a false flag arrangement
    Because the USA’s current actions, including slapping down Poland’s MiG transfer plans, would indicate they’re keen to avoid being drawn into direct confrontation - for obvious reasons, not least of which is their recent ‘pivot to Asia’ agenda.
This discussion has been closed.