US paving the way to supply Ukraine with a ground-launched rocket-assisted glide bomb with the range of 150 km. This will nearly double Ukraine’s range from the 90 km it has now. (Albeit the warhead is somewhat smaller, 60 kg instead of 90 kg for classical HIMARS.) This is a big one. Could force the Russians to push their large supply dumps even further back, further slowing down their logistics.
Russian bombing of Ukraine’s power grid is increasing the cost of war for the US. Biden asks Congress for $1.1bn for Ukraine’s energy security. (Replacement transformer stations and diesel generators.)
Pro-Russians who trusted the official line that Russia was in Kherson forever continue to be rounded up by the SBU.
New Strelkov frontline photo hits the light of day. Opsec is impeccable, the photo is impossible to geolocate.
Ukraine says it now has domestic production of 152 mm artillery shells albeit only 4 shells have been seen so far.
Russia launches RT in Serbian.
What took so long? Next should be Slovakia and Bulgaria but RT is banned there courtesy of an EU-wide decree.
EU drastically rolled back Russian pipeline gas (no more Nord Stream 1), but also drastically ramped up Russian LNG imports, courtesy of France, Spain and Belgium. EU is also buys Russian gas from Azerbaijan.
Nonetheless in sum there has been a near 50% reduction in volume sourced from Russia. The main winner has been US LNG. (See graphs at bottom.)
Russia is food self-sufficient but its agriculture isn’t. Seeds, stud stock, veterinary products, pesticides, and machinery all still largely come from abroad.
Macron says post-war Russia must be given security guarantees.
While Ukrainian American-made M777 howitzers are being repaired in Poland, Lithuania is the hub for the German-made PzH2000.
Economic mobilization? 250 prisoners will start work in Russia’s UralVagonZavod tank factory.
Not very 5D? In 2020 Russia exported gold worth $9.6bn. That is more than 50% of its gas export which came in at $17.2bn.
An older piece I recently found chronicles how Sobyanin jumped on the COVID bugaboo to try to set himself above the PM Mishustin until Putin had to intervene and elaborate who was his primary lockdowns and vax coercion enforcer.
The mayor of Kharkov is fined for speaking Russian. He says he will continue to do so.
Medvedev keeps visiting arms factories. Much more active than Putin.
The New York Times does a piece on how a (US-made) anti-radar missile fired by the Ukrainians went astray, injuring civilians. The story came out just after the missile incident in Poland where Zelensky infuriated Biden by sticking with the claim the missile was Russian.
Speaking of which, there is an excellent technical analysis of all the evidence in the Poland missile incident: Przewodów Incident Analysis
Shipping sanctions force Russia to acquire a big tanker fleet.
Frontline reporter Aleksander Kots named to the Human Rights Soviet presidential advisory board along with other supporters of the Russian cause who replace liberals:
“Also added to the body on Thursday were Yulia Belekhova of the All-Russian People’s Front, an organization that raises money to support pro-Kremlin separatist forces in Ukraine’s Donbas region, as well as Elena Shishkina, a member of the Free Donbas party in the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic. “
The Soviet has 48 members, 10 were replaced.
Zelensky wants to dissolve the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate), the biggest church in the country.
Ukraine’s HIMARS railway war:
The trench warfare aspect reminds me of the Iran-Iraq War. Absolute carnage for little gain, just a monumental waste of human lives. I wonder if this war will last as long as that one, did.