Here is what happened today:
(BBC summary here: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-46338671)
The Ukrainian navy tried to do a freedom-of-navigation operation and transit through the Kerch straits.
The Ukrainian flotilla consisted of two of the new Gurza-class gunboats, and one tug.
First, a FSB craft rammed the Ukrainian tug, causing damage. You can see a video of the ramming here. I am not a seaman, but it seems to me like a pretty clear-cut ram, with the Ukrainian tug stopping (perhaps to avoid the other FSP ship in front of him) and the much-larger Russian ship evidently turning to ram the vessel head on.
You can hear the Russian commander shouting “hit him on the right! Hit him on the right!” along with copious cursing.
Then, and the precise events are not clear yet – Russian ships opened fire on the Ukrainian warships and reportedly boarded and captured the warships. There are reports this happened in an area of the sea of Azov that even Russia calls “international waters.” Six Ukrainian sailors are said to have been injured, two seriously. The crew’s status is unclear.
This is a clear act of war.
Russia has also moved a ship into the channel under the Kerch bridge, blocking any further traffic. This is a de-facto blockade of Ukraine’s eastern coast, another act of war.
This is a serious escalation. Russia just engaged in naval warfare, capturing Ukrainian sailors.
Today, many Ukrainians are putting candles in their windows to remember the famine. Some are also fasting.
Some tourism. Some local politics / corruption.
What is going on in the dark subversive hearts of these NGO leaders???
Do they want to destroy Europe? Are they so filled with resentment and hatred?
NGO is named “Advocates Abroad”.
On March 11, 1933, a plan for a very different kind of gulag was presented to Joseph Stalin. Devised by Genrikh Yagoda, Stalin’s head of the Secret Service and Matvei Berman, the head of the Soviet Gulag system, the scheme proposed that the government resettle 2,000,000 political undesirables in self-sufficient settlements in Siberia and Kazakhstan. The idea was that the “settlers” would work to bring a million hectares of untouched land into agricultural production, thus helping famine struck Russia- and sustaining themselves. So, in May 1933 the first assortment of 6,000 political dissidents and petty criminals were loaded up into trains. Their destination was the isolated Western Siberian Island of Nazino.
The Nazino colony was meant to achieve self-sufficiency in two years. However, thirteen weeks after its conception, the project had failed spectacularly. For the settlers were abandoned in a hostile Siberian wilderness, under-resourced and unprepared. All too soon, anarchy, violence, and disease became rife in the community. When the authorities finally intervened, after the rejection of the plan by Stalin, they discovered that 4,000 of the original deportees were either dead or missing. Most disturbingly of all, however, was the number of survivors who had turned to cannibalism. Until Glasnost, the Nazino Affair remained buried. Since then, historians have revealed what happened on that remote Siberian Island. . . .
As a result, the original target of 2,000,000 deportees over ten years was halved. However, worries about costs did not stop the deportations beginning immediately- even before Stalin had given his official approval. . . .
. . . by the time the barges reached Nazino on May 18th, twenty-seven people were already dead. . . .
On board the barges, the deportees had been issued with 200grams of bread a day. Now, they had nothing but 20 tonnes of flour- around 4 tons per person. For the first four days, even this was denied them. In these conditions, it is hardly surprising that in the initial twenty-four hours, a further 295 people died. . . .
When the guards finally attempted to distribute the flour, there were riots as the hungry settlers began to fight for rations. Unable to restore order, the guards fired shots and moved the flour to the shore opposite the island while the settlers calmed down. The guards tried to distribute the supplies again the next day. However, once more fights broke out. Finally, it was decided to split the settlers into brigades of 150 people, each represented by a leader or Brigadier. These brigadiers were responsible for collecting the flour and distributing it. Unfortunately, many of these leaders were self-nominated criminals appropriated all the flour for themselves. This inauspicious beginning was only the prelude for the horrors to come. . . .
Apart from the imprisonment of several of the surviving guards, the authorities swept the whole matter under the carpet. However, with the advent of Glasnost in 1988, the details of the tragedy became publicly available for the first time. However, the Ostyak people around Nazino never forgot the terrible events of summer 1933. To them, Nazino was and always will be Death Island.
Kateryna Handzyuk, 33, suffered burns over 40% of her body and severe eye damage as a result of the assault on 31 July in the southern city of Kherson.
Ms Handzyuk, who was also a Kherson city council member, had undergone 11 operations in the capital Kiev.
President Petro Poroshenko on Sunday called for the killers to be punished. Five suspects are already in custody.
The exact cause of Ms Handzyuk’s death was not immediately known, but reports in local media suggested it was a blood clot.
In September, the activist – who also campaigned against Russian-backed separatism – posted a video in which she urged Ukrainians to fight rampant corruption.
“I know I look bad now. But at least I’m being treated,” she said. “And I definitely know that I look much better than justice in Ukraine. Because nobody is treating it.”
The death of the activist on Sunday triggered an avalanche of reactions on social media in Ukraine, with many users expressing shock.
I want to fund anti-corruption movements.
My wife is making Reuben sandwiches after trying the most heavenly Reuben in Cracker Barrel when we visited the US. The conversation goes like this:
– What type of cheese goes on them?
– Swiss. “Shvaitsarski.” You know.
– They make lots of different cheeses in Switzerland.
Apparently, there’s no conception of an individual flavor of cheese called Swiss in Ukraine. Wikipedia sheds some light:
Swiss cheese is a generic name in North America for several related varieties of cheese, mainly of North American manufacture, which resemble Emmental cheese, a yellow, medium-hard cheese that originated in the area around Emmental, in Switzerland.
Also, this is cool:
Swiss cheese without eyes is known as “blind”. . . .
In general, the larger the eyes in a Swiss cheese, the more pronounced its flavor because a longer fermentation period gives the bacteria more time to act. This poses a problem, however, because cheese with large eyes does not slice well and comes apart in mechanical slicers. As a result, industry regulators have limited the eye size by which Swiss cheese receives the Grade A stamp.
This month, we are moving away from our crazy and oppressive land lady. We found out from a neighbor whom we said goodbye to that she got the property in a deeply immoral way. She was hired to help an aging couple that lived there. She either forged documents or somehow manipulating or tricking them into signing the property over to her.
Unfortunately, this type of behavior isn’t unusual in post-communism. I would like “post-communism” to be thought of and discussed as its own distinct social order.
I’m not sure if the title is correct, Loma officially lost his second professional fight, which was against Orlando Salido – though many people consider it a horrible, and possibly corrupt decision.
Archaeologists have found what they believe to be the world’s oldest intact shipwreck at the bottom of the Black Sea where it appears to have lain undisturbed for more than 2,400 years.
The 23-metre (75ft) vessel, thought to be ancient Greek, was discovered with its mast, rudders and rowing benches all present and correct just over a mile below the surface. A lack of oxygen at that depth preserved it, the researchers said.
“A ship surviving intact from the classical world, lying in over 2km of water, is something I would never have believed possible,” said Professor Jon Adams, the principal investigator with the Black Sea Maritime Archaeology Project (MAP), the team that made the find. “This will change our understanding of shipbuilding and seafaring in the ancient world.”
The ship is believed to have been a trading vessel of a type that researchers say has only previously been seen “on the side of ancient Greek pottery such as the ‘Siren Vase’ in the British Museum”.
. . . .
It was among more than 60 shipwrecks found by the international team of maritime archaeologists, scientists and marine surveyors, which has been on a three-year mission to explore the depths of the Black Sea to gain a greater understanding of the impact of prehistoric sea-level changes.
They said the finds varied in age from a “17th-century Cossack raiding fleet, through Roman trading vessels, complete with amphorae, to a complete ship from the classical period”.
This is a clue why I had so many unproductive correspondences with people who couldn’t reconcile my support of Trump and my being in Ukraine. These very official looking script-readers repeat the same phrases for years and create illusions of consensus where none exist.
Even better compilation, with some of the same content, here: https://twitter.com/fuctupmind/status/1056971162566250496?s=21
Presided by His All-Holiness, the Ecumenical Patriarch, the Holy and Sacred Synod convened for its regular session from October 9 to 11, 2018, in order to examine and discuss items on its agenda.
The Holy Synod discussed in particular and at length the ecclesiastical matter of Ukraine, in the presence of His Excellency Archbishop Daniel of Pamphilon and His Grace Bishop Hilarion of Edmonton, Patriarchal Exarchs to Ukraine, and following extensive deliberations decreed:
1) To renew the decision already made that the Ecumenical Patriarchate proceed to the granting of Autocephaly to the Church of Ukraine.
2) To reestablish, at this moment, the Stavropegion of the Ecumenical Patriarch in Kyiv, one of its many Stavropegia in Ukraine that existed there always.
3) To accept and review the petitions of appeal of Filaret Denisenko, Makariy Maletych and their followers, who found themselves in schism not for dogmatic reasons, in accordance with the canonical prerogatives of the Patriarch of Constantinople to receive such petitions by hierarchs and other clergy from all of the Autocephalous Churches. Thus, the above-mentioned have been canonically reinstated to their hierarchical or priestly rank, and their faithful have been restored to communion with the Church.
4) To revoke the legal binding of the Synodal Letter of the year 1686, issued for the circumstances of that time, which granted the right through oikonomia to the Patriarch of Moscow to ordain the Metropolitan of Kyiv, elected by the Clergy-Laity Assembly of his eparchy, who would commemorate the Ecumenical Patriarch as the First hierarch at any celebration, proclaiming and affirming his canonical dependence to the Mother Church of Constantinople.
5) To appeal to all sides involved that they avoid appropriation of Churches, Monasteries and other properties, as well as every other act of violence and retaliation, so that the peace and love of Christ may prevail.
At the Ecumenical Patriarchate, the 11th of October, 2018