, officials have suggested that Vladimir Putin may use the May 9 holiday to repackage the war in Ukraine. Dramatic options include escalation through a formal declaration of war or general mobilisation – or de-escalating by proclaiming victory. Alternatively, Putin could offer up a “sandwich”, as one analyst put it, that praises the Russian army’s “victory” while preparing the population for a grinding and painful conflict as status quo. Ukrainian officials in particular have warned that Putin is planning to announce a mass mobilisation, or even to declare war against Ukraine, calling up personnel and resources that were untapped under Russia’s so-called “special operation” that began on 24 February.“Russia has already moved to covert mobilisation and is preparing to announce open mobilisation in the near future,” said Kyrylo Budanov, the head of Ukraine’s military intelligence, in an interview this week with the Ukrainian news outlet New Times. “I’m quite curious: how will they explain this to their own people?”
Andrew Roth THE OBSERVER for THE GUARDIAN
Since the beginning of the millennium, when Vladimir Putin took power in Russia, authoritarian leaders have come to dominate global politics. Self-styled strongmen have risen to power in Moscow, Beijing, Delhi, Brasilia, Budapest, Ankara, Riyadh and Washington.
inian defenders holed up under the Azovstal steelworks plant in besieged Mariupol.
The harrowing images reveal the horror of a dimly lit, makeshift ‘hospital’ inside the plant where soldiers receive treatment, many for lost limbs. The photos were published alongside a statement pleading for help.…
tions, said: "President Putin is continuing to escalate this war in a manner that is totally unacceptable."
Liz Truss, Britain's Foreign Secretary, had earlier warned any use by Russia of its tactical battlefield nuclear weapons against Ukrainian forces would represent an "extremely serious escalation" of the conflict. On Monday morning, Ben Wallace, the UK's Defence Secretary, accused Russia of posturing.
"We've looked at their posture. There isn't a significant change," he said on LBC radio, adding that the Russian leader was trying to "flex muscles" with his invasion of Ukraine bogged down. Mr Wallace said he had assured his 12-year-old son: "No, we're not going to have a nuclear war. "What I've said to him is, look, President Putin is dealing at the moment in a rhetoric, he wants to distract from what's gone wrong in Ukraine, and he wants us all to be reminded that he has a nuclear deterrent." However The Nato Chief, Jens Stoltenberg, said: "This is dangerous rhetoric and irresponsible behaviour on Putin's part."
ments in Kiev certainly have the potential to turn into such a catastrophe, for they are not
just about Ukraine. Just as the Syrian civil war reflects a wider regional struggle between Iran and
Saudi Arabia for political and religious supremacy, Ukraine finds itself the luckless victim of much
bigger forces than its own internal divisions - centuries old East/West rivalries and ambitions.
Ukraine’s disgusting kleptocracy deserves to fail; genuine democracy and rule of law in this
brutalised nation would be an overwhelmingly positive development. Yet there is something
almost Napoleonic about the idealistic fervour with which Europe pursues its eastern ambitions.
That said, the forces that turned the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand into the greatest
conflict in history simply don’t exist today. Despite occasional sabre-rattling, the world is
generally better at muddling along together than it has ever been. The big, intra and inter-regional
conflicts of the last century are unthinkable.
y troops in Bucha were a "provocation" and no resident suffered violence at the hands of Russians.
The bodies of 410 civilians found in formerly Russian occupied territory around Kyiv are being examined by forensic experts as Ukrainian prosecutors prepare war crimes cases.
On Sunday night, Mr Johnson promised to send specialist police and military investigators to help the International Criminal Court's investigations with a view to bringing charges in The Hague.
The Telegraph understands that the UK is also leading a drive within the "Five Eyes" alliance to consider sharing classified intelligence on war crimes with Ukrainian prosecutors.
Russian troops 'murderers, torturers, rapists, looters', says Zelensky
... and SURPRISE SURPRISE Germany is the main roadblock to imposing tougher sanctions on Russia, Poland's Prime Minister has said, as calls mount to punish Moscow for apparent war crimes.
YET a.n.other nail in the coffin so to speak, with regard to and respect for my long standing diatribe concerning the actions of our Lords & Masters since Severin Suzuki gave her impassioned speech to the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio.