Friday, September 29, 2023

U.S. Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California Dies At Age 90


CNBC: Dianne Feinstein, California’s longest-serving senator, dies at 90 

* Dianne Feinstein, the oldest member of the U.S. Senate and the longest-serving senator from California, has died at age 90. 

* Feinstein’s death leaves vacant her powerful Senate seat, requiring Gov. Gavin Newsom to appoint a temporary successor.

* The Democratic senator’s decades-long career was studded with major legislative achievements on issues including gun control and the environment. 

U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California has died at age 90, her office confirmed Friday. Feinstein, a Democrat, was the oldest member of the Senate, where she served since 1992. 

She held her seat in the chamber longer than any other woman, and any senator from California. She passed away Thursday night at her home in Washington, D.C.  

Read more .... 

WNU Editor: Supporters of President Biden are putting the pressure on California Governor Newsom to quickly appoint a replacement .... Pressure is on Newsom to quickly appoint Feinstein’s temporary replacement (Politico). My gut tells me he is not going to rush into it. As a reader of this blog astutely told me this morning. This gives Newsom an opportunity to appoint Vice-President Harris to take the job, and remove her as an opponent to his own Presidential aspirations.

U.S. Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California Dies At Age 90  

Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, an advocate for liberal priorities, dies at age 90 -- AP  

Dianne Feinstein, longest-serving female US senator in history, dies at 90 -- CNN  

Sen. Dianne Feinstein dies at age 90 -- The Hill  

Feinstein, trail-blazing California senator, dies at 90 -- Politico  

Senator Dianne Feinstein Dead At 90, One Day After Casting Vote -- Zero Hedge  

Who will be Dianne Feinstein's replacement? Here are California's rules for replacing U.S. senators. -- CBS News  

Dianne Feinstein is dead. Here's what happens next, and what it means for Democrats. -- Business Insider

Russia - Ukraine War News Morning News Updates -- September 29, 2023 (Videos)


WNU Editor: A lot of updates in the past 24 hours.

Why Is There A Cemetery Monument In Canada Honoring A German Nazi Waffen SS Unit Accused Of Committing Genocide?

Yaroslav Hunka served in the 14th Waffen SS Division, but was applauded in Canada's parliament. Russian Embassy in Ottawa and Canadian Parliament
A photo of Heinrich Himmler meeting soldiers in the 14th Waffen Grenadier Division of the SS(BBC News)
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recognize take part in Friday's standing ovation for Ukrainian Second World War veteran Yaroslav Hunka in Parliament. It was later learned that Hunka served with a Nazi unit during the war. Photo by Patrick Doyle / The Canadian Press 
* Canada's parliament accidentally applauded a 98-year-old Nazi veteran on Friday. 
* The gaffe rekindled calls for a monument honoring his unit to be removed from a Canadian cemetery. 
* Yaroslav Hunka served in the 14th Waffen SS Division, a voluntary unit of mostly Ukrainians. 
The Canadian parliament's standing ovation for a Ukrainian war veteran who turned out to be a former fighter for Nazi Germany has reignited calls to take down a monument honoring his unit. 
Yaroslav Hunka, 98, who served in the voluntary 14th Grenadier Division of the Waffen SS, was applauded as a war hero by Canadian leaders on Friday without them realizing he actually fought in a Nazi unit. 
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has since apologized for the gaffe, calling it "deeply embarrassing." 
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy was visiting Canada's parliament at the time of the standing ovation.  
Read more .... 
WNU Editor: Living in Canada I can tell you this story is just the tip of the iceberg. Canada opened the door to thousands of Nazi veterans like Yaroslav Hunka after the Second World War war, and they have lived extremely well in Canada. And over the years through social events and friends I have met some of these former Ukrainian Nazis, and you can take this to the bank ..... they have certainly not abandoned their ideology nor what they did during the war. In fact, because of the war, they are now crawling out of the woodwork (like Yaroslav Hunka) for what they did during the Second World War. 
So what is next? 
It has now been a week since the Canadian Parliament gave a rousing standing ovation for this "former" Waffen SS soldier, and the impact is still being felt. The Canadian media and Canada's political class are trying their best to bury this story, and the media "gymnastics" on what they are trying to do is quite a sight to see. 
The best one are questions from reporters and the pundit class on if (and when) Prime Minister Trudeau is going to call/talk to Ukraine President Zelensky to apologize for this event. The standard response has been that Canada has already apologized through "diplomatic" channels. But I know the real reason why this issue is not going to be brought up directly with the Ukrainian President. The fact is that Zelensky and his staff all knew who and what Yaroslav Hunka and his comrades did during the Second World War, and for many of them they view him as a hero. I am even now reading some pro-Ukrainian blogs who want to invite Yaroslav Hunka to Ukraine to receive recognition for what he did during the Second World War. Canadians may be completely ignorant on World War 2 history, but everyone is Ukraine is not. 
On a personal note. My father fought against Germany in the Second World War for the Soviet Army. Being Russian - Ukranian he particularly hated pro-German Ukrainian units like the the 14th Waffen Grenadier Division of the SS - also known as the Galicia Division - that was formed in 1943. In his home town of Bila Tserkva a third of the population of 100,000 was Jewish, and they were all exterminated by units like the Galacia Division when they went through the city (Wikipedia link here). And then there is the involvement of these pro-Nazi Ukrainian units in Germany's extermination camps. But that is another story for another time. My blood pressure is high enough as it is with what I have seen and heard this past week.
More News On The Reverberations From The Canadian Parliament's Standing Ovation Of A Ukrainian Who Served In A German Nazi Waffen SS Unit During The Second World War  

Are Ukrainian Soldiers Surrendering In Large Numbers?

RT: Ukrainian troops surrendering en masse – TASS  

More than 10,000 of Kiev’s forces have reportedly laid down arms in recent weeks, using a special radio channel to contact the Russian military 

Large numbers of Ukrainian troops have surrendered to the Russian military in recent weeks, using a special radio frequency designed for fighters willing to lay down arms, TASS reported on Wednesday. 

The frequency, 149.200 call sign ‘Volga’, was set up by the Russian military during the summer. Thus far, it has been used by more than 10,000 Ukrainian servicemen who were subsequently taken into Russian custody, according to a source with knowledge of the situation cited by TASS. The person added that the radio frequency is active along the entire front line. 

Read more .... 

Update #1: Over 10,000 Ukrainian fighters surrender since summer using special radio frequency (TASS). 

Update #2: The source named the number of people who used the open frequency 149.200 “Volga” to surrender military personnel of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (Top War) 

WNU Editor: Ukraine is also claiming the same thing. Aside from paying people to defect .... Ukraine pays USD 500,000 to Russian pilot who surrendered with Mi-8 helicopter (Euromaidan), Kyiv is also making the claim that Russian soldiers are surrendering .... Over 200 Russian soldiers surrender to Ukraine thanks to "I Want to Live" project (Ukrinform). 

I am always skeptical of these reports. But what I do find is disturbing is a large discrepancy in the number of POWs that both sides claim to have. On the Russian sides I understand there are thousands of POWs currently in detention. On the Ukraine side the number is only a few hundred.

New York Times: Russia Has Gained More Ukrainian Territory In 2023 Than What Kyiv Has Been Able To Recapture

Seattle Times/New York Times: Who’s gaining ground in Ukraine? This year, No one  

The front line in Ukraine changed little in the winter. Russia aimed to capture the entirety of the Donbas, but it only inched forward. 

Ukraine has made minimal gains in its counteroffensive. Dense Russian minefields and fortifications have made every attack extremely costly. 

Despite nine months of bloody fighting, less than 500 square miles of territory have changed hands since the start of the year. A prolonged stalemate could weaken Western support for Ukraine. 

Both sides started the year with lofty ambitions: Russia wanted to capture the eastern Donbas region, while Ukraine aimed to split Russian forces with an attack in the south. 

Neither offensive has gone to plan. The front line, after months of combat and heavy casualties, remains largely unchanged.  

Read more ....  

Update: One Map Summarizes Status Of Ukraine War & Russia's Strategy (Zero Hedge)  

WNU Editor: Two things stick out in the above New York times report. (1) Russia now controls nearly 200 square miles more territory in Ukraine compared with the start of the year." And (2) .... Russia’s forces are outnumbering Ukraine’s nearly three to one on the battlefield.  

Update #1: The Western media narrative remains the same. Ukraine is slowly gaining ground in this war .... Ukrainian Forces Are 'Gradually Gaining Ground', NATO Chief Says (Reuters). More here .... NATO chief says Ukrainian forces are “gradually gaining ground” in counteroffensive (CNN).

Thursday, September 28, 2023

Is Slovakia About To Elect A Pro-Russian Government?


CNN: A NATO country could soon have a pro-Russian leader 

Slovakia is getting ready to elect its fifth prime minister in just four years, and with Kremlin sympathizer Robert Fico’s opposition party leading the polls, it is one being watched with alarm in the West. 

 Since Russia invaded Ukraine last February, Slovakia has been one of Kyiv’s staunchest allies. The two countries share a border, Slovakia was the first country to send air defenses to Ukraine and it welcomed tens of thousands of refugees. 

But all that could change if Fico comes to power. The former prime minister makes no secret of his sympathies towards the Kremlin and has blamed “Ukrainian Nazis and fascists” for provoking Russia’s President Vladimir Putin into launching the invasion, repeating the false narrative Putin has used to justify his invasion.  

Read more

WNU Editor: Since the start of the Russia - Ukraine war a number of European governments have been defeated in national elections. My gut is telling me the same will happen with the current government in Slovakia. 

 Update: Russia is following this election very closely, and this assessment is probably correct .... NATO country's pro-Ukraine government to lose election – polls (RT)

 Is Slovakia About To Elect A Pro-Russian Government?  

Slovakia swamped by disinformation ahead of parliamentary elections -- France 24  

'Not a single round': Slovak election could see Kyiv lose staunch ally -- Reuters

Slovakia may be about to elect a government which plans to halt aid to Kyiv -- The Conversation  

Will Slovakia elect a pro-Russian premier? -- GZero

Russia Says It Plans To Raise Defense Spending By Almost 70% Next Year

Visitors walk near exhibits, which are on display at the Army-2015 international military-technical forum in Kubinka, outside Moscow, Russia, June 17, 2015.  

Moscow Times/AFP: Russia said Thursday that it plans to raise defense spending by almost 70% next year 

Russia said Thursday that it plans to raise defense spending by almost 70% next year, funneling massive resources into its Ukraine offensive to fight what it calls a "hybrid war" unleashed by the West. 

With Moscow's "special military operation" now dragging through its 20th month, both sides have been digging deep and procuring weapons from allies in preparation for a protracted conflict. 

The announcement came as NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg and the defense ministers of Britain and France visited Kyiv, where President Volodymyr Zelensky lobbied for more air defense systems.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: It is not only defense spending that is seeing a increase .... Russia plans 26% rise in budget spending in 2024 election year (Reuters). 

Russia Says It Plans To Raise Defense Spending By Almost 70% Next Year  

Russia Needs to Boost Defense Spending to Counter Hybrid War - Kremlin -- Sputnik  

Russia plans to increase its military budget by 70% in 2024 -- Le Monde  

Russia Reportedly Plans To Ramp Up Military Spending in 2024 -- RFE  

Russia’s defence industry to ramp up military production by a third -- The Telegraph  

Russia must increase defense spending — Kremlin spokesman -- TASS  

Russia’s Escalating Military Spending Amidst Ukraine Conflict: A Deep Dive -- BNN

US Secures The Release Of Travis King A Soldier Who Crossed Into North Korea 2 Months Ago


FOX News: US officials say Travis King is in American custody after months of detainment in North Korea 

A US official confirms to Fox News Digital that US Army Private Travis King is safely in US custody 

The North Korean government has released a U.S. serviceman after holding him in detainment since July, Fox News Digital has confirmed. 

The North Korean government returned U.S. Army Pvt. Travis King to U.S. custody in mainland China on Wednesday following months of imprisonment, according to North Korean state outlets and the U.S. National Security Council. 

"The relevant organ of the [Democratic People's Republic of Korea] decided to expel Travis King, a soldier of the U.S. Army who illegally intruded into the territory of the DPRK, under the law of the Republic," state media outlet Korean Central News Agency wrote early Wednesday, according to translations provided by Yonhap News Agency.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: There was no "upside" for the North Koreans to keep him. 

US Secures The Release Of Travis King A Soldier Who Crossed Into North Korea 2 Months Ago  

US secures the release of the soldier who crossed into North Korea 2 months ago -- AP  

Travis King, the U.S. soldier who crossed South Korea's border into North Korea, is back in U.S. custody -- CBS News  

American soldier who crossed into North Korea arrives back in U.S. -- Axios  

American Soldier Travis King Back in US After Fleeing to North Korea -- VOA  

North Korea Deports US Soldier Who Tried To Defect Over 'Racism' -- Zero Hedge

Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Armenia Says More Than 50,000 Refugees Have Fled Nagorno-Karabakh


DW: Nagorno-Karabakh: Nearly half of ethnic Armenians flee 

Yerevan said more than 50,000 ethnic Armenians have fled in fear of reprisal from Azerbaijan. Meanwhile, Germany and the US are pushing to get independent observers into the breakaway region.

The Armenian government said at least 53,000 ethnic Armenians fled Nagorno-Karabakh since Azerbaijan's operation last week to take control of the breakaway region. 

Meanwhile, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock on Wednesday called on Azerbaijan to allow international observers into Nagorno-Karabakh, to show Baku's commitment to protecting the people living there. 

US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken has also underlined the need for international observers and humanitarian aid in the region in a talk with Azerbaijan's President Aliyev, Washington says.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: I said a few days ago that in the months to come much of the Armenian population will leave. I was wrong. It looks like much of the population will be gone in a the next few weeks. 

Armenia Says More Than 50,000 Refugees Have Fled Nagorno-Karabakh  

More than 50,000 refugees have fled Nagorno-Karabakh, Armenia says -- France 24  

Nagorno-Karabakh: 50,000 people flee to Armenia along 100 miles of winding road after Azerbaijan military offensive -- SKY News 

Over 50,000 Armenians flee enclave in Azerbaijan as exodus accelerates -- ABC News 

More than a third of Nagorno-Karabakh’s ethnic Armenians flee, says Yerevan -- Al Jazeera  

‘Where are France, America and Charles Michel?’ Armenians rage as 50,000 flee Nagorno-Karabakh -- Politico  

Nearly half of Nagorno-Karabakh’s population has fled. What happens next? -- CNN

Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau Apologizes On Behalf Of Canada's Parliament After A Nazi Veteran Was Praised By Parliamentarians At Zelenskyy Event Last Week


CBC: Trudeau apologizes after a Nazi veteran was praised by parliamentarians at Zelenskyy event  

Yaroslav Hunka was a member of the 1st Galician division, a unit of Adolf Hitler's war machine 

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has apologized on behalf of Canada's Parliament after a veteran of Adolf Hitler's Nazi forces was included in an event last week honouring Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

"This was a mistake that has deeply embarrassed Parliament and Canada. All of us who were in this House on Friday regret deeply having stood and clapped even though we did so unaware of the context," Trudeau said in a brief statement to reporters.

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: The damage has already been done. 

Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau Apologizes On Behalf Of Canada's Parliament After A Nazi Veteran Was Praised By Parliamentarians At Zelenskyy Event  

Trudeau offers ‘unreserved’ apology after tribute to man who fought with Nazis -- Global News  

Trudeau apologizes for presence, recognition of Nazi unit veteran in Parliament -- Canadian Press  

Trudeau apologizes for recognition of Nazi unit war veteran in Canadian Parliament -- AP 

Canada's House Speaker apologises for praising Ukrainian who fought for Nazis -- BBC  

Trudeau apologizes for tribute to vet who fought in WWII Nazi unit -- Politico  

Canada's Trudeau apologizes for honoring Ukrainian Waffen SS Nazi -- RT

Russian Ministry Of Defense Accuses US, Britain of Helping Ukraine in Crimea Missile Attack

In this satellite photo provided by Planet Labs, smoke billows from a headquarters building for the Russian Black Sea fleet in Sevastopol, Crimea on Friday, Sept. 22, 2023, after it was struck in a missile attack launched by the Ukrainian military. (Planet Labs via AP)  

VOA: Russia Accuses US, Britain of Helping Ukraine in Crimea Missile Attack  

Russia Wednesday accused the United States and Britain of helping Ukraine carry out an attack last week against the headquarters Russian Black Sea fleet in Russia-occupied Crimea.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said at a briefing that the attack was “planned in advance using Western intelligence means, NATO satellite assets, and reconnaissance planes.” Zakharova also said U.S. and British intelligence helped coordinate the missile strike.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: Some in the Russian Foreign Ministry already believe the West is at war with Russia .... Sergey Lavrov says US is 'directly at war' with Russia in horrifying escalation of threat (Express). 

Russian Ministry Of Defense Accuses US, Britain of Helping Ukraine in Crimea Missile Attack  

US and UK involved in attack on Crimea – Russia -- RT  

Attack on Sevastopol Carried Out in Close Coordination With US, UK Specialists - Moscow -- Sputnik  

Russia accuses Ukraine’s Western allies of helping attack its Black Sea Fleet headquarters -- AP 

Russia Claims Western Intelligence Aided Ukraine in Striking Crimea Navy HQ -- AFP

Erdogan Says Turkey Will Support Sweden's NATO Bid If US Approves F-16s


DNYUZ/New York Times: Erdogan says Turkey’s parliament will ratify Sweden’s entry into NATO if the U.S. sells Turkey fighter jets. 

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey said in comments reported on Tuesday that Turkey would approve Sweden’s bid to join the NATO military alliance if the United States went ahead with a sale of F-16 fighter jets and related technology to Turkey.

“If they keep their own promises, our parliament will keep the promise given,” Mr. Erdogan told reporters while returning to Turkey from a trip to Azerbaijan.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: Eerdogan is always trying to find an angle to benefit his government and country. 

 Erdogan Says Turkey Will Support Sweden's NATO Bid If US Approves F-16s 

Turkey will back Sweden's NATO bid if U.S. keeps promise on F-16 sale -Erdogan -- Reuters  

Turkiye will support Sweden's NATO bid if US commits to F-16 sale: Erdogan -- The Cradle  

Erdogan says Turkey will keep promise on Sweden's NATO bid if US approves F-16s -- Al-Monitor 

Erdogan: Turkey to ratify Sweden's NATO bid if US approves F-16 sales to Ankara -- Kyiv Independent

Russia - Ukraine War: Military Summary And Analysis For 9.27.2023 (Videos)


WNU Editor: The big news that I have been hearing for the past two days from Russia is that the Russian Ministry of Defense believes if current trends continue, Russia will be well positioned to end the SMO (Special military Operation) by 2025. 

I am not that optimistic. 

In the past few days I have been reflecting on the war, and I do not see this ending in the next year or two. I see the opposite. This Ukraine counteroffensive has burned its best troops and thousands of pieces of Western equipment, and in any other situation a government would sue for peace. But the West, specifically the U.S. government and some of its allies, are hell-bent on continuing this war. They are going to continue the flow of monies and war equipment to Kyiv, even if it will mean the death of hundreds of thousands of more Ukrainians. And if President Biden is re-elected in 2024, God only knows where this conflict is going to end.

Tuesday, September 26, 2023

Canada's Speaker Resigns After Honoring Nazi Now-Wanted For Extradition By Poland


CBC News: Anthony Rota resigns as Speaker after inviting former Ukrainian soldier with Nazi ties to Parliament  

Rota lost support of key Liberal ministers on Tuesday 

Liberal MP Anthony Rota is stepping down as House of Commons Speaker after inviting a Ukrainian veteran who fought in a Nazi division to Parliament — a dramatic turn of events that will be welcomed by MPs on all sides who said the embarrassing incident was unforgivable. 

Rota's resignation will take effect at the end of the sitting day on Wednesday. 

"This House is above any of us, Therefore, I must step down as your Speaker," Rota said at 2 p.m. ahead of Tuesday's question period. "I reiterate my profound regret for my error in recognizing an individual in the House.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: I have been watching in the past hour some Canadian commentators who are hoping this issue will go away. I do not think it will. It is now becoming international .... Poland moves to extradite Ukrainian SS veteran who was applauded in Canada (Politico).

Update: Yup .... A fitting humiliation for the Liberals, and for Canada (National Post).

Update #2: The Russian government and media are having a field day on this story .... Moscow reacts to Canada honoring Nazi veteran (RT). More here .... Canadian parliament speaker resigns after honoring Ukrainian Nazi veteran (RT). 

Canada's Speaker Resigns After Honoring Nazi Now-Wanted For Extradition By Poland  

House Speaker Anthony Rota resigns over Nazi veteran invite with 'profound regret' -- CTV News  

Canada’s House speaker resigns over inviting a man who fought for a Nazi unit to Parliament -- AP 

Canada parliament speaker resigns after calling Ukrainian Nazi veteran a ‘hero’ -- The Guardian  

Canada parliament speaker steps down after honouring Nazi -- Al Jazeera  

Canada's Speaker Resigns After Honoring Nazi Now-Wanted For Extradition By Polish Minister -- Zero Hedge

Diplomats From Beijing, Seoul, And Tokyo Meet To Plan For A Major Summit In December

Foreign Minister Park Jin (second from right) and three senior diplomas each from South Korea, Japan and China pose for a photo ahead of talks at the Foreign Ministry in Seoul on Monday. PHOTO: YONHAP/THE KOREA HERALD 

DW: South Korea, China and Japan make plans for rare summit 

Diplomats from Beijing, Seoul, and Tokyo have met to explore restarting regular three-way summits to foster regional cooperation. 

The initiative has been on hold for the past few years. South Korean, Chinese and Japanese senior diplomats agreed on Tuesday that their national leaders should meet at the "earliest convenient time," Seoul's Foreign Ministry said after a rare meeting. 

The sides are seeking to reboot trilateral exchanges after regular annual meetings were put on hold because of strained relations and the COVID-19 pandemic.  

Read more .... 

Diplomats From Beijing, Seoul, And Tokyo Meet To Plan For A Major Summit In December  

South Korea Hosts Rare Talks With Japan, China Diplomats -- AFP  

South Korea proposes summit with Japan, China in December: sources -- Kyodo 

China, Japan and South Korea agree talks to calm fears over US ties -- The Guardian 

China, Japan and South Korea to hold trilateral talks over deteriorating ties due to US -- Republic World

France To Withdraw Ambassador And Troops From Niger


 The Guardian/AFP: France to withdraw ambassador and troops from Niger  

Emmanuel Macron says he will consult coup leaders on withdrawal after two months of defying their expulsion order 

France will withdraw its ambassador from Niger followed by the French military contingent in the next months, Emmanuel Macron has said in the aftermath of the coup in the west African country that ousted the pro-Paris president. 

The French president’s announcement appeared to end two months of defiance in which Paris’s ambassador had been kept in place in Niamey despite coup leaders ordering him to leave.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: They are next .... Niger: Germany, US watch and wait as France pulls troops out (DW). 

France To Withdraw Ambassador And Troops From Niger  

President Macron says France will end its military presence in Niger, pull its ambassador after coup -- AP 

France will end its military presence in Niger by the end of 2023, Macron says -- CNN  

France withdraws troops from Niger -- Politico  

France to withdraw ambassador, troops from Niger after coup: Macron -- Al Jazeera

Philippines Removes Chinese Floating Barrier In Disputed South China Sea Shoal


VOA: Philippines Removes China’s Floating Barrier at South China Sea Lagoon  

The Philippine coast guard said it removed a Chinese floating barrier that blocked access to a disputed South China Sea lagoon. 

A coast guard statement said it conducted a “special operation” to remove the barrier, which China put in place last week. 

The Philippine coast guard also released a video showing a diver using a knife to cut a rope attached to buoys.  

Read more .... 

Philippines Removes Chinese Floating Barrier In Disputed South China Sea Shoal  

Philippines removes Chinese barrier at disputed shoal in 'special operation' -- Reuters  

Philippines Removes China Floating Barrier in Disputed South China Sea Shoal -- Bloomberg 

Moment Philippines diver armed with a knife removes enormous 1,000ft floating barrier installed by Beijing near disputed South China Sea island -- Daily Mail  

Philippines executes 'special operation' to remove floating barrier in South China Sea -- ABC News (Australia)

South Korea Holds Major Military Parade That Showcased An Arsenal Of Advanced Weaponry


CNN: South Korea showcases missiles, drones and tanks in rare military parade 

South Korea showcased an arsenal of advanced weaponry in a military parade on Tuesday, rolling tanks and missiles down the streets of its rain-soaked capital during the first event of its kind in a decade. 

The parade, held to mark the 75th Armed Forces Day commemorating the founding of the country’s armed forces, comes against the backdrop of rising tensions on the Korean peninsula, as South Korea draws closer to the United States and Japan against the threat of North Korea’s accelerating weapons program. 

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: South Korea is also issuing a warning to North Korea .... Seoul warns of N Korean regime termination, if nuclear weapons used (RFA). 

South Korea Holds Major Military Parade That Showcased An Arsenal Of Advanced Weaponry  

S. Korea holds rare military parade, warns NK against nuclear attack -- Korea Herald 

South Korea flexes military muscle with parade, issues dire warning about North's nuclear pursuit -- FOX News  

South Korea holds 1st major military parade in a decade -- DW

Video Shoes Russian Black Sea Fleet Commander Is Still Alive Days After Ukraine Claimed To Kill Him


Reuters: Russian Black Sea commander Sokolov shown on video call after Ukraine said it killed him 

MOSCOW (Reuters) -Admiral Viktor Sokolov, the commander of Russia's Black Sea Fleet, was shown on Russian state television on Tuesday attending a defence leaders' meeting remotely, a day after Ukrainian special forces said they had killed him. 

In video and photographs released by the defence ministry, Sokolov was shown as one of several fleet commanders on video apparently joining an in-person meeting of Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu and other army chiefs, although not speaking. It was not clear when the video was filmed.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: Kyiv is already back-tracking their claim that General Sokolov was killed .... Ukraine ‘clarifying’ whether Russian commander was killed in strike, after video purportedly shows him alive (CNN). 

Video Shoes Russian Black Sea Fleet Commander Is Still Alive Days After Ukraine Claimed To Kill Him

Viktor Sokolov: Russian video 'shows Black Sea fleet commander alive' -- BBC 

Russian Black Sea Fleet commander is still alive, video suggests, days after Ukraine claimed to kill him -- Insider  

Viktor Sokolov: Top Russian admiral appears in video call - after Ukraine claimed he was killed in missile strike -- SKY News  

‘Dead’ Russian admiral may not actually be dead -- Politico

U.S. Army Hospital In Germany Treating Americans Injured While Fighting In Ukraine

The Landstuhl Regional Medical Center in Germany. (Photo courtesy U.S. Army).  

New York Times: U.S. Army Hospital in Germany Is Treating Americans Hurt Fighting in Ukraine 

A group of Ukrainian Army soldiers pierced by Russian grenades and mortar shells arrived at a hospital recently in need of surgery. It would have been a familiar scene from the bloody war grinding on in Ukraine, except for two crucial differences: Most of the wounded soldiers were American, and so was the hospital — the U.S. Army’s flagship medical center in Germany.

The Army has quietly started to treat wounded Americans and other fighters evacuated from Ukraine at its Landstuhl Regional Medical Center. 

Though the number so far is small — currently 14 — it marks a notable new step in the United States’ deepening involvement in the conflict.  

Read more ....  

Update #1: Army hospital in Germany caring for wounded American volunteers in Ukraine (Task & Purpose)  

Update #2: Growing Numbers Of American Volunteers Wounded In Ukraine Treated At US Army Hospital In Germany (Zero Hedge)  

WNU Editor: This should surprise no one. The U.S. has been treating wounded Ukrainian soldiers at this hospital since last year .... US military to treat wounded Ukrainian troops at Landstuhl hospital (Air Force Times).

Monday, September 25, 2023

Editor's Note

Overwhelmed with work. Its been a crazy few days.

I hope to have some free time later today. There is a lot to post about.

Sunday, September 24, 2023

During Zelensky's Visit, Canada's Parliament Gave A Standing Ovation To A Ukrainian Veteran Who Fought With A Nazi SS Division In WWII

One of several photos on a blog by an SS Galichina veterans’ group that shows Yaroslav Hunka, the Ukrainian immigrant honored by the Canadian Parliament during a visit by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. Hunka is in the front row, middle.  

Politico: Nazi-linked veteran received ovation during Zelenskyy’s Canada visit  

House Speaker apologizes for leading tribute in Parliament: ‘This initiative was entirely my own.’ 

OTTAWA, Ont. — A ranking Canadian parliamentarian is apologizing to Jewish communities around the world for a blunder during Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s visit that led to lawmakers honoring a veteran accused of belonging to a Nazi division in WWII. 

It followed demands by Canadian Jewish organizations Sunday for an apology after it was revealed members of Parliament across party lines awarded a 98-year-old veteran on Friday with a standing ovation shortly after Zelenskyy addressed Canada’s House of Commons. 

Yaroslav Hunka stood and appeared to salute from the public gallery when he was recognized by House Speaker Anthony Rota, who introduced Hunka as a Canadian-Ukrainian war hero from his political district. 

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: There is some stuff that I cannot just make up.

Canadian politicians may have been clueless on Yaroslav Hunka's past, but I would not be surprised if some in Zelensly's delegation knew who he was. Many in Zelensky's government regard these former Nazi veterans as heroes, and their biggest hero is Stepan Bandera

And before I forget, there is also the issue of Canadian Deputy Prime Minister Freeland's grandfather .... Canada’s Future Prime Minister Needs to Come Clean About Her Nazi Collaborationist Grandfather (The Tablet). 

 Canada's Parliament Gave A Standing Ovation To A Ukrainian Veteran Who Fought With A Nazi SS Division In WWII  

Man who fought for Nazis honoured during Zelenskyy's visit to Parliament -- National Post/Canadian Press  

Zelenskyy joins Canadian Parliament’s ovation to 98-year-old veteran who fought with Nazis -- Forward  

Leader of Canada's House of Commons apologizes for honoring man who fought for Nazis -- AP 

House Speaker apologizes for honouring Ukrainian who fought in Nazi unit in WW II -- CBC  

Canada House speaker apologizes for recognition of veteran who fought for Nazis -- Reuters  

House Speaker Anthony Rota apologizes after inviting man who fought for Nazis to Parliament -- CTV News 

Who Is Yaroslav Hunk? Ex Waffen SS Member Gets Applauded in Canadina Parliament -- Times Now News

GAO Report Says F-35 Fighter Jets Are Only Capable Of Flying Missions 55% Of The Time

An F-35 aircraft mechanic with Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 542 and an F-35B instructor pilot with Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron (VMFAT) 501 perform preflight checks on an F-35B Lightning II jet at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, North Carolina, April 20, 2023. US Marine Corps/Staff Sgt. Theodore Bergan  

Insider: F-35 stealth fighter jets are only capable of flying missions a little over half the time, watchdog finds 

* A new government watchdog report reveals that the F-35 program is plagued by maintenance issues. 

* Because of these problems, the stealth fighters can only fly a mission just over half the time. 

* "Maintenance challenges negatively affect F-35 aircraft readiness," the report noted. 

The US military's F-35 fighters are only capable of flying missions just over half the time due to serious maintenance issues, according to a watchdog review of the Pentagon's long-term procurement plans for the stealth aircraft. 

The new findings, included in a lengthy report published on Thursday by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), come just days after a F-35B Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter crashed over South Carolina during a training mishap, leading the US Marines Corps to issue a two-day pause to all flights over ongoing safety concerns.  

Read more ....

WNU Editor: Why is this not surprising. 

 GAO Report Says F-35 Fighter Jets Are Only Capable Of Flying Missions 55% Of The Time  

Only 55 percent of F-35s mission capable, putting depot work in spotlight: GAO -- Breaking Defense  

F-35 fighter jets are only ‘mission capable' 55% of the time, new report says -- NBC News  

America's F-35 fighter jets are only 'mission capable' HALF of the time and are costing $1.3 trillion to maintain new report claims - just days after $80M stealth plane crashed in South Carolina -- Daily Mail  

F-35 military fighter jets ‘mission capable’ 55% of time: Report -- News Nation  

F-35 Stealth Fighter Only Mission Capable About Half The Time, Government Report Finds -- Zero Hedge/Epoch Times

ABC/Washington Post Poll: Trumpt Leads Biden 52-42%

ABC News: Trump edges out Biden 51-42 in head-to-head matchup: POLL  

The president's job approval rating is 19 points underwater. 

President Joe Biden's job approval rating is 19 points underwater, his ratings for handling the economy and immigration are at career lows. A record number of Americans say they've become worse off under his presidency, three-quarters say he's too old for another term and Donald Trump is looking better in retrospect -- all severe challenges for Biden in his reelection campaign ahead. 

Forty-four percent of Americans in the latest ABC News/Washington Post poll say they've gotten worse off financially under Biden's presidency, the most for any president in ABC/Post polls since 1986. Just 37% approve of his job performance, while 56% disapprove. Still fewer approve of Biden's performance on the economy, 30%.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: The news media is downplaying this poll .... Washington Post says poll showing Trump beating Biden likely an ‘outlier’ (The Hill). More here .... Washington Post calls its own poll showing Trump beating Biden by 10 points an 'outlier' (FOX News). 

ABC/Washington Post Poll: Trump Leads Biden 52-42%  

Post-ABC poll: Biden faces criticism on economy, immigration and age -- Washington Post  

Poll showing Trump up 10 points over Biden for 2024 election criticized -- The Guardian  

Trump Leads Biden by 9 Points in New Washington Post/ABC News Poll -- National Review  

Trump leading Biden by double digits – poll -- RT

Editor's Note

Too many personal chores that need to be taken care of today. Blogging will return this evening.

Thousands Flee Armenia Amid Claims That Ethnic Cleansing Is Under Way


BBC: Nagorno-Karabakh: Thousands flee as Armenia says ethnic cleansing under way 

A growing stream of ethnic Armenian refugees are fleeing Nagorno-Karabakh following Azerbaijan's seizure of the disputed region last week. 

More than 13,000 people have so far crossed into Armenia from the enclave, which is home to a majority of some 120,000 ethnic Armenians.

They left after the government in Yerevan announced plans to move those made homeless by the fighting. Armenia's PM has warned that ethnic cleansing is "under way" in the region. 

"That's happening just now, and that is very unfortunate fact because we were trying to urge international community on that," Nikol Pashinyan told reporters.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: This is what ethnic cleansing looks like. Within a few months there will be no Armenians in Nagorno-Karabakh. 

Thousands Flee Armenia Amid Claims That Ethnic Cleansing Is Under Way 

 Exasperated residents flee Nagorno-Karabakh after Azerbaijan seizes control of breakaway region -- AP  

Dozens of Karabakh Children Reach Safety in Armenia in Back of a Truck -- Reuters  

Thousands flee into Armenia after Azerbaijan retakes enclave -- AFP  

‘We know we aren’t going back’: Nagorno-Karabakh Armenians face up to a life in exile -- Politico 

Ethnic cleansing fears as thousands flee Nagorno-Karabakh into Armenia after Azerbaijan seized the disputed enclave -- Daily Mail 

‘I will never go back’: death stalks the exodus from Nagorno-Karabakh -- The Guardian  

Long queues and traffic jams as ethnic Armenians flee Nagorno-Karabakh fearing persecution -- ABC News Australia 

In Photos: Refugees Fleeing Nagorno-Karabakh Arrive in Armenia -- Moscow Times

Saturday, September 23, 2023

US Ambassador To Canada Confirms It Was Intelligence From The Five Eyes Partners That Helped Canada Link India To Sikh's Killing


CTV News: 'Shared intelligence' from Five Eyes informed Trudeau's India allegation: U.S. ambassador 

There was "shared intelligence among Five Eyes partners" that informed Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's public allegation of a potential link between the government of India and the murder of a Canadian citizen, United States Ambassador to Canada David Cohen confirmed to CTV News. 

 In an exclusive interview on CTV's Question Period with Vassy Kapelos airing on Sunday, Cohen confirmed "there was shared intelligence among Five Eyes partners that helped lead Canada to making the statements that the Prime Minister made." 

On Monday, Trudeau informed the House of Commons in a rare statement on a matter of national security that Canadian intelligence agencies were investigating "credible allegations" that agents of the Indian government were involved in the June death of prominent Canadian Sikh leader Hardeep Singh Nijjar in B.C.  

Read more .... 

 US Ambassador To Canada Confirms It Was Intelligence From The Five Eyes Partners That Helped Canada Link India To Sikh's Killing  

Shared intelligence from Five Eyes informed Trudeau's India allegation, CTV News reports -- Reuters  

US diplomat says intelligence from ‘Five Eyes’ nations helped Canada to link India to Sikh’s killing -- AP 

US envoy confirms Canada received intelligence from Five Eyes partners before Trudeau went public with allegations against India -- The Tribune  

Shared intel behind Trudeau’s statement on Nijjar killing: US envoy -- Indian Express

Xi And Assad Announce The Launching Of A China-Syria Strategic Partnership

Photo Credit: Xinhua

DW: China, Syria announce 'partnership' after Assad-Xi talks  

Chinese President Xi Jinping said Syria and China would pursue a "strategic partnership" after meeting with Bashar Assad. China has been a stalwart defender of Assad's regime, despite Western human rights criticism. 

Chinese President Xi Jinping met with Syrian President Bashar Assad on Friday, and announced the establishment of a "strategic partnership," according to a readout of the meeting by Chinese state broadcaster CCTV. 

Xi said the partnership "will become an important milestone in the history of bilateral relations," without providing any further details. 

Read more .... 

Xi And Assad Announce The Launching Of A China-Syria Strategic Partnership  

China and Syria announce 'strategic partnership' -- Middle East Eye  

Xi, Assad announce launch of China-Syria strategic partnership -- The Cradle  

Assad seeks Xi's help to end Syria's isolation -- DW  

China's Xi offers to help war-torn Syria rebuild, regain regional status -- Jerusalem Post 

China to help reconstruct war-battered Syria -- Al Jazeera

Is The World Running Out Of Patience With Zelensky's 'Blank Cheque' Demands?

Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy receives a standing ovation in the House of Commons as he delivers a speech on September 22 [Blair Gable/Reuters pool]  

Daily Mail: Is the world running out of patience with Zelensky's 'blank cheque' demands? Poland stops giving arms and US gives a fraction of what Ukraine's leader asked for as he visits Canada today to win support 

* Zelensky landed in the capital Ottawa late Thursday and will address parliament 

* It comes after Biden offered more weapons but refused to give ATACMS missiles 

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky is meeting Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau in Ottawa today as he scrambles to rally more international support for his troops fighting Russia. 

Mr Zelensky landed in the capital late on Thursday, and will today have talks with Mr Trudeau before addressing the Canadian parliament. 

The Ukrainian leader will hope for a positive outcome after a difficult visit to Washington, where US president Joe Biden offered warm words of support and weapons - but rejected a request for longer range ATACMS missiles.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: Some countries are still giving .... Zelenskiy Says Ukraine Will Triumph as Canada Pledges More Military Help (Bloomberg).

Poland’s Prime Minister Tells Ukraine’s Zelensky To Never ‘Insult Poles Again’


Reuters: Polish PM tells Ukraine's Zelenskiy 'never to insult Poles again' 

WARSAW (Reuters) -Poland's prime minister told Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy on Friday not to "insult" Poles, maintaining harsh rhetoric towards Kyiv after the Polish president had sought to defuse a simmering row over grain imports.

Poland decided last week to extend a ban on Ukrainian grain imports, shaking Kyiv's relationship with a neighbour that has been seen as one of its staunchest allies since Russia invaded Ukraine in February last year.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: Polish Prime Minster Mateusz Morawiecki is not going to bend the knee to Zelensky. 

Poland’s Prime Minister Tells Ukraine’s Zelensky To Never ‘Insult Poles Again’  

Never ‘insult Poles again,’ Poland’s prime minister tells Ukraine’s Zelensky -- CNN  

Poland’s PM to Zelensky after ‘political theater’ UN remarks: Never ‘insult Poles again’ -- The Hill  

Poland PM tells Zelensky never ‘insult Poles again’ after stirring up drama with grain remark -- NYPost 

Poland’s PM tells Ukraine’s Zelenskyy to ‘never insult’ Polish people again -- Al Jazeera

Ukraine President Zelensky Ends His Trip To Canada


CBC News: Russia's violence 'must not go unpunished,' Zelenskyy tells Canadian parliamentarians  

Liberals announce $650M more in military aid for Ukraine, spread over several years 

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy delivered an impassioned speech to parliamentarians Friday calling on Canada and other western allies to stick by his country through the long, bloody road to victory. 

He addressed a joint meeting of the Canadian Parliament Friday following meetings in the United States, where he appealed for more weapons and rebuked Russia before the United Nations General Assembly and Security Council. 

"Life and justice must prevail," Zelenskyy told the House of Commons in a speech that received at least a dozen standing ovations. 

Read more .... 

WNU Editor: He got some military aid from Ottawa, but it is spread out over 3 years .... Canada pledges C$650 million in Ukraine aid during Zelensky visit (France24). 

I was in Toronto yesterday to meet a member of his delegation. I am a part of group in Montreal that has been shipping (at no cost to Ukraine) vital pharmaceuticals that Ukraine needs. It is not much, but it is help that people need. 

We have been doing this since the start of the war, but unfortunately our last 3 shipments have disappeared .... hence having the meeting yesterday (thanks to my cousin who still has some pull with the Zelensky government). The meeting was very short, but he promised to look into it, and to not give up. 

I am skeptical. The Ukrainian official I met looked stress, tired, impatient, and dispirited. But the strangest part of our meeting was that we talked in Russian on his insistence. I guess he did not like how I was taking my time to make my points clear in the Ukrainian language (which I admit I am not very good at), and he needed to be somewhere else ASAP. 

Sighhh .... this is not how you should treat people who are helping you. If this is how their foreign officials are behaving , I can now understand why some EU states are slowly walking away from the mess that is  the Ukraine war.

Ukraine President Zelensky Ends His Trip To Canada 

As it happened: Zelenskyy visits Canada, addresses Parliament as PM pledges $650M in Ukraine aid -- CTV News  

Zelenskyy speaks before Canadian Parliament in his campaign to shore up support for Ukraine -- AP  

Zelenskyy Thanks Canada for Helping Save ‘Thousands of Lives’ -- VOA  

Zelenskyy basks in Canada love-in as cracks emerge in alliance -- Politico  

Zelenskyy's 1st visit to Canada since Russia's war 'emotional,' say some Ukrainians -- CBC News

U.S. Tells President Zelensky That The U.S. Will Provide Ukraine With Long-Range ATACMS Missiles


NBC News: Biden tells Zelenskyy that U.S. will send Ukraine ATACMS long-range missiles  

Some in Washington had resisted supplying the weapons system, known as “attack-ems,” out of fear that it would widen the war with Russia. 

President Joe Biden has told his Ukrainian counterpart, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, that the United States will provide a small number of long-range missiles to aid the war with Russia, three U.S. officials and a congressional official familiar with the discussions told NBC News on Friday. 

The officials, who were not authorized to speak publicly, did not say when the missiles would be delivered or when a public announcement would be made. 

For months, Ukraine has asked for the Army Tactical Missile System, known as ATACMS, which would give Kyiv the ability to strike targets from as far away as about 180 miles, hitting supply lines, railways, and command and control locations behind the Russian front lines.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: Some believe this will make a difference (see video below). 


U.S. Tells President Zelensky That The U.S. Will Provide Ukraine With Long-Range ATACMS Missiles  

US will send Ukraine ATACMS long-range missiles, Biden tells Zelenskiy: NBC -- Reuters  

Biden tells Zelenskyy U.S. will provide Ukraine with ATACMS long-range missiles -- CBS News  

Ukraine war: US to give Kyiv long-range ATACMS missiles - media reports -- BBC  

Biden agrees to send long-range missiles to Ukraine -- Politico  

Ukraine to receive US long-range ATACMS missiles, US media report -- Al Jazeera  

Ukraine Situation Report: Signs Small Number Of ATACMS May Soon Be On Way -- Warzone  

Media: US to send small number of ATACMS to Ukraine -- Kyiv Independent

U.S. President Biden Confirms That US Abrams Tanks Will Arrive In Ukraine Next Week


The Hill: Biden: First US Abrams tanks to arrive in Ukraine next week  

The first U.S. Abrams tanks allocated for Ukraine will arrive there next week, President Biden said during a White House meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. 

Biden vowed during the meeting with Zelensky and other officials from Ukraine and the White House that his administration would continue to support the war effort against invading Russian forces.  

Read more ....  

WNU Editor: The "experts" are skeptical that these tanks will make a difference .... Will US M1 Abrams Be a Game-Changer in Ukraine War? (Newsweek). 

U.S. President Biden Confirms That US Abrams Tanks Will Arrive In Ukraine Next Week 

First US Abrams tanks to reach Ukraine ‘next week:’ Biden -- AFP  

Biden: 'Next week, the first Abrams tanks will be delivered to Ukraine' -- Kyiv Independent  

Abrams tanks for Ukraine are "on schedule" and F-16 training to begin "soon" – Pentagon -- Ukrainska Pravda  

US Abrams Tanks Arrive In Ukraine Next Week, Biden Confirms -- Zero Hedge