"It will give us, for a course of years, good government and then only end, due to the corruption of the people, in despotism, which will be the only form of government suitable for them." -- Benjamin Franklin on the Constitution Philadelphia, 1789.

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Swiss parliament supports arms re-export to Ukraine and breaks image of neutrality MikeRivero Thu, 06/08/2023 - 10:10

A bill in Switzerland calls into question its neutrality in the Ukrainian conflict because the country’s Senate approved the amendment authorising the re-export of arms to Ukraine, according to a statement from the parliament. This effectively breaks Switzerland’s long-held image of a “neutral” country.

Russophobia and anti-Russian propaganda run very deep, particularly in the political West. For centuries, various European invaders have been portraying Russia in the worst possible light. Over time, this became extremely intricate and even found its way into the mainstream. However, more recently, particularly since the start of the special military operation (SMO) in Ukraine, Russophobic propaganda became completely absurd.

As Russian paratroopers descended on Kyiv and attempted to seize Antonov Airport, U.S. officials offered Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy a lifeline. Western leaders could guarantee him safe passage if he fled immediately.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Tuesday that Ukraine has received a “powerful offer” from countries that are willing to provide their American-made F-16 fighter jets.

The former civilian head of the NATO alliance is warning that some Eastern European states are prepared to send their soldiers to Ukraine if the bloc does not make significant pledges to Kiev during an upcoming summit. 

Russia on Wednesday questioned what the US might have known about Ukrainian plans to attack the Nova Kakhovka Dam in southern Ukraine using a US-provided HIMARS system.

The Russian-controlled dam was destroyed early Tuesday, and the Russians and Ukrainians are trading blame for the incident, which has caused massive flooding and forced thousands of people to evacuate. The destruction of the dam also threatens the water supply to Crimea.

Russia is accusing Ukraine of blowing up the Kakhovka dam as “revenge” for a failed offensive. The act of sabotage may lead to “very serious consequences,” Kremlin spokesman Peskov has warned.

The dam was partially destroyed early on Tuesday morning, sending a surge of water downstream and flooding towns and villages along the path of the Dnieper River.  Over 1300 people were evacuated after the dam failed.

Air Force Reconsidering Whether Some Staff Jobs Need Pilots Amid Shortage MikeRivero Thu, 06/08/2023 - 08:17

As the Air Force struggles to ease its pilot shortage, it can still fill all its cockpits, Chief of Staff Gen. Charles Q. Brown Jr. said June 7. But that has come at the expense of staff jobs normally assigned to pilots, leading the service to reconsider whether those staff jobs actually need to be filled by rated officers, he said.

Schrdinger's War... And Orwell's MikeRivero Thu, 06/08/2023 - 08:16

This is what I was thinking of with regards to the war in Ukraine.

Before the fighting started, all possible outcomes seemed equally possible. If you did not look too closely at numbers of soldiers and weaponry, that is.

But once it did start (when Schrödinger’s box was opened), it became clear very rapidly that Ukraine had no chance of winning.

So why are we still acting as if the box remains closed?

Mississippi veterans cemetery replaces American flag with gay pride flag MikeRivero Thu, 06/08/2023 - 08:03

The Biloxi National Cemetery in Mississippi, a graveyard for war veterans, has raised a gay pride flag to fly among the American flags at the entrance to the cemetery.

The decision was made possible by Secretary of Veterans Affairs Denis McDonough’s authorization for all VA facilities to raise the LGBT flag in 2022.