2016.03.17 – 2016.03.20
K: To be continued…
– “ELIJAH J.MAGNIER –
Russia is speaking to its allies in the same tone used by U.S President Barack Obama when he addressed his Middle Eastern allies saying “I shall not be drown in your swamp”, in Syria, marking a contrast with Iran about several issues. The main disputes are related to the timing of the ceasefire, which Tehran considers it was agreed too early; the fate of the person of President Bashar al-Assad; and the early announcement of the withdrawal of the Russian air force, when many areas are still under the control of the “Islamic State” group (known as Daaesh or ISIS) and Jabhat al-Nusra,- Al-Qaeda in the Levant, and their allies.
According high official present in Syria, Russia will withdraw the biggest of its air force from Hmaymeem airport in the coming days and will keep helicopters and jets, sufficient to protect the Russian naval base at Tartus, and support the war on Salafist Jihadists. This move coincides with an agreement between Washington and the Kremlin to impose the capitulation on all fighters without exception, excluding Jihadists. According to the agreement, the U.S will enforce on its regional Middle Eastern allies the cessation of the flow of weapons. Although Moscow doesn’t share the same view but aim for a general unconditional election, Washington and Saudi Arabia would be even happy for the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to select the candidate of his choice as long as he steps down. In this way, no party involved in the war in Syria can be defeated but all would come out as winners.
“Iran did not agree with Russia on the timing of the ceasefire, because its forces were advancing on several axes. Moreover, the withdrawal of the Russian air force came in an inappropriate moment, during the Geneva negotiations. It has affected the negotiations and offered wide speculation and interpretations. When the Russian President Vladimir Putin informed Iran of his intention to withdraw his Air force, he emphasised that this tactical move does not mean that Russia is pulling out from Syria; that the Kremlin can, in 24-hours, bring back the entire fleet to the battlefield if necessary; that the move would be announced only to facilitate the process of a political solution in agreement with the United States. We expressed our concern of the inadequate time of this move and confirmed that we are ready to fill up any gap needed to protect the regime and the country by all means and inject more forces in Syria. Moscow knows now that Iran is not pulling away under any circumstances”, said the source.
Although Russia doesn’t mind a federation in Syria, its aim is to prevent the partition of the country, regardless who is in command. Iran doesn’t see any alternative but Assad in power. Moreover, Russia maintains a good relationship with Israel while Iran supports the Syrian President who chooses to distance himself from Israel as a matter of doctrine. Any one who would replace Assad will pave the way to a peace with Tel Aviv”.
Iran shall not back down in its support to Assad, while the United States and Russia believe a solution is possible where all parties are winners. Moscow still supports elections under the auspices of the United Nations, which involved any candidate, including Assad with no particular care to the person. It is also clear that there are tactical differences between the allies. Tehran and Damascus were informed about the latest Russian decisions but not consulted. Moscow entered into the den of the major influential countries in the Middle East from the Syrian gate. If it gets out now of it now, where it is going to go to? (…)“
How the Russian Army Will Get Hundreds of New Mean Tanks at Just $240,000 a Pop
From: Russia Insider, Thu, Mar 17, 2016, by Mark Nicholas
– “Modernizing a T-72 tank to a T-72B3M standard upgrades the capabilities of the venerable machine to a level of a new T-90
If you’re Russia one thing you have in abundance is Cold War era tanks – mainly T-55, T-62 and T-72 types. Tens of thousands of these are mothballed in hundreds of different places across the country, albeit a part of the T-72s is also in active service alongside the newer T-90.
The T-72s was perhaps the best tank in the world, and certainly sported the most powerful gun, when it entered production in the early 1970s but is only just barely adequate for a modern battlefield.
However, give that 1970s platform a more capable power plant, a newer cannon, better sights, and equip it with modern reactive armor blocks and you’ve got yourself a very respectable weapon for a fraction of a price of a new tank.
Russians seem to be aware of this as much as everyone else and are taking advantage of their Cold War inheritance. They’ve have reported a plan to bring 150 more venerable T-72B tanks to the modern T-72B3M/B4 standard. The cost? A paltry 17 million rubles per machine – $240,000 at current exchange rates: (…)“
Most Russians Today Would Vote to Preserve the Soviet Union
From: Russia Insider, Thu, Mar 17, 2016, by Moses Birch
– “More than half of Russians (64%) would vote to maintain the Soviet Union if a referendum were held today, according to the results of the All-Russia Public Opinion Center (VTsIOM), reports Russian state owned news agency TASS.
“Twenty-five years after the referendum on preserving the USSR was held [March 17, 1991], most citizens have again answered in the affirmative. “According to the data of the USSR central electoral commission, 78% of those USSR citizens who voted [71% in the Russian Federation] ticked off the ‘yes’ box . Today 64% of Russians say they would vote for preserving the Soviet Union,” the pollster said.
The maximum number of positive answers (81%) came from supporters of Russia’s Communist Party (KPRF). This figure increases from 47% among those18-24 to 76% among respondents age 60 and more, VTsIOM said.
Only 20% of Russian citizens would vote negatively for preserving the Soviet Union, according to the poll results.
A minority of today’s Russia blame last Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev (27%) and his team for failing to implement the general will expressed at the referendum to preserve the Soviet Union, the supreme authorities in general (17%), first Russian President Boris Yeltsin and his close associates (13%), according to the poll.
Only 2% of respondents pointed to the influence of the United States and other Western countries, and only 1% of those polled said there was no one to blame for the disintegration of the Soviet Union.
However, many respondents (40%) were hesitant to answer the question of who was to blame for the demise of the USSR, the pollster said.
VTsIOM held its poll on March 5-6, 2016, polling 1,600 people in 130 populated areas in 46 Russian regions, territories and republics, with a statistical margin of error of no more than 3.5%. (…)“
More than 1100 citizens of the DPR registered marriages since the beginning of the year, Justice Ministry
From: Novorossia Today, March 11, 2016
K: Data and more photographs on the page of “Novorossia Today”.
– “Departments of the Justice Ministry issued nearly 570 marriage certificates of the DPR. It was reported to DAN by the press-service of the Ministry.
‘568 marriages were registered by 10th March 2016’, representative of the press-service added.
Be reminded that the first marriage was registered by the militiaman with a signcall Motorola with his wife Elena.
The ceremony took place in the Central Registry Office of the Donetsk People’s Republic.
His bride was 22 years ld at the moment of the registration, Elena was born in 1993 in Slavyansk.
Be reminded that Slavyansk was the fist city of the DPR attacked by Kiev nationalistic troops. (…)“