The Russian government… a brutal, schizophrenic, dissociated, draconian society of criminals and murderers. The question I personally always come back to is, how do so many millions, hundreds of millions of people live with such repression, hopelessness, isolation, suffering, lies, and murder as acceptable and normal? And this is not just directed at Russia, it is a global disease, that of collective insanity. But since my focus here is specific… Russia, you can fight- on the side of good, stand up, fight for freedom , like Ukraine, and perhaps die. Or you can remain passive, inactive, resigned to accept evil. And perhaps die. Do I need to remind you of Stalin? Gulags? Mass murder of your countrymen by your countrymen? It is a personal choice that many have to make- to die on your knees, or standing, defiant, fighting.

And here I will mention my agenda- I do have one; we all do. Mine is to remind people of history, to remind them of the difference between good and evil. Yes, things are mostly grey; black and white do not exist in this realm, other than as a fantasy. There will never be “peace”, bliss, paradise, perfection, so long as there is more than one human on the earth. But it is a matter of degrees- some systems are better than others, some include democracy, freedom, rule of law, human rights, endless possibilities for anyone strong enough to seek them. Other systems do not allow any of this. The line is clear. One only need look at Ukraine, and then Russia’s actions in Ukraine on this very day to see what it looks like on both sides of that line.

The Soviet dream... I would characterise it as a nightmare.

The Soviet dream… I would characterise it as a nightmare. Undated photograph from Telegram channel Ищи своих.  Maybe it’s 1982, or is it 2022?


Mariupol, 2022, or Sarajevo 1992? Is Ukraine on the way to the same?

And finally for those interested, a Brookings webinar from earlier this week- The Future of American Air Power is available online to watch at your leisure. A few points of note from the talk, regarding Ukraine.  First, the panelists noted that Ukraine has maintained complete command and control, free from infiltration from cyber attacks from the top down, on all levels, during the current war. Russia has not been able to penetrate any of their systems as regards the cyber threat. I wonder how much the U.S. has contributed to that stability? Another point that was made is the Ukrainian air defense capabilities and their effectiveness- the mix of old, Soviet-era equipment, offensive and defensive, along with modern weapons have allowed Ukraine to maintain security in the air. Intelligence sharing as well as the effective use of drones seem to play a large part in this model. Slava Ukraine!

Russian combat losses as of 06 May 2022

Russian combat losses as of 06 May 2022.

In recent days I have had visits with various friends, neighbors and acquaintances.  In each case the war in Ukraine has come up, and in each case I was astounded to find out how little everyone understood about the war, the implications of the war for the world, and the history of Russia, to say nothing of their knowledge of modern hybrid warfare, disinformation, propaganda, narrative creation, and the use of history in modern conflicts. One neighbor even asked me what the flag on my hat meant- the blue and yellow Ukrainian flag. And let me say that these are what I would consider professional, successful, and “educated” people.

I suppose not everyone is like me, not everyone has been a student of history, obsessively so at times,  amongst other disciplines, for their entire lives. For context, I began “monitoring” the cold war at age 14, in 1979 with the USSR’s invasion of Afghanistan. I spent 10 years in the U.S. Army, from 1982-1992, with a mission centered on eastern Europe and Warsaw Pact countries. That is where I began.  I like to believe I have some background to support my statements.

Perception management is a phrase which encompasses the modern use of propaganda, disinformation, historical revisionism, and narrative creation- essentially a monumental form of behavioral engineering. Russia is expert in the field. Not that our country is far behind- take the Trump debacle for example- yes, debacle, to put it very kindly- same tactics, same targets, same goals.

Perception management is easily done in our modern society- the internet and social media, along with modern advertising and management concepts are perfect tools.  The need for instantaneous media updates are practically wired into our brains at this point- I suspect most people sleep with their hands instinctively outstretched to their nightstand where their phone sits.  They are ready as their eyes open for the latest bit of news/emotion forced upon them by “news” sources.  And then, to complicate matters, they are stuck in information bubbles, feedback loops where one is only exposed to information conforming to that which they already search for, read, and know about.

News sources– most of what passes for such, especially in the U.S. (Fox, Breitbart, Newsmax, Washington Post, CNN, Apple, MSNBC- any source which corners a person into a box and keeps them there) and decidedly so in authoritarian societies such as Russia where they are all state controlled- and controlled down to the word, are presenting nothing short of modified entertainment,  brief hyperstimulating video and soundbites to capture the average person’s few seconds of attention. They are pandering to base emotions, attempting in the shortest possible time frame to capture attention, elicit a response based on their government/corporate/personal agenda, and then as a bonus to focus attention on a clickable link to sell a product or service. Welcome to “news” in the 21st century.

How to counter it all?  Be informed. Read as many news sources as you can. Find the same report across a number of channels and platforms, from extreme left to extreme right if you have the time and inclination.  Then arrive at your own conclusions based on discretion and critical thinking.  For reference, here are some of the sources I regularly turn to, and use to cross-check and cross-reference a report that I find questionable: Ukrinform (Ukrainian news source), BBC, Aljazeera, Brookings Institute, Foreign Affairs, Diplomatic Courier, RFE/RL, TOLO (Afghan news service), Balkan Insight, the Economist, and Financial Times. If you search any of these sources on a site such as mediabias/ you will find them in the center of the scale, with high marks for accurate and unbiased reporting.

As a final note- and then my rant for the day will end- if we are not informed, we will fall. To paraphrase Ray Bradbury from an interview in the 40th anniversary edition of Fahrenheit 451 in my library, if the world collapsed, the only buildings we would need to survive are a hospital to treat the injured, and a library where all knowledge we need to rebuild is held.  Knowledge is power, and ignorance will be our death.

Ignorance  continues to lead to the death of many, many Russian sons, fathers, brothers, and uncles:


Russian combat losses as of 04 May 2022

Russian combat losses as of 04 May 2022- continuing to grow.

I often wonder these days if I should even make the effort to repost and refute Russian propaganda lies. One thing should be perfectly clear, for anyone who has eyes to see- every single word, phrase, statement that comes out of Russia is a lie, pure propaganda, and should only be taken for its value as a piece of propaganda to be added to all the rest in order to arrive at some shred of truth (most often the exact opposite of what is being stated.)

Remember this- dictatorships, authoritarian and totalitarian regimes, and the Russian mafia state all have a common leadership style- that of maintaining an unstable society, a society of division and shortages,  through terror and fear, in order to legitimise and necessitate their rule.

Russia’s war of aggression in Ukraine, their war crimes and crimes against humanity there, there inciting of anti-state, pro-Russian aggression in Ukraine and Moldova, and their desires in Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia and elsewhere, along with their threats of nuclear war should be keeping the world awake at night. These facts should be prompting world leaders to do much more than they are doing. We are faced with an existential threat- our very lives are at stake.  The lives of everyone living, and for many generations ahead, hang in the balance. Every possible action that can be taken against Russia, Russian interests, Russian partners- any country with ties to Russia must be taken.

Putin must fall, the Russian state must fail, the Russian people must be freed. Only then will Ukraine and the rest of the world be safe again.

On to Russian combat losses for today. The following comes from the Telegram channel The Center for Countering Disinformation.

Russian combat losses as of 30 April 2022

Russian combat losses as of 30 April 2022

From the same Telegram channel, the morning’s Fake/Fact post:

❌Despite the position of Western countries on the inadmissibility of nuclear blackmail and the prevention of nuclear war, russian foreign minister lavrov said that russia will never flirt with the topic of nuclear war, Zelensky spoke about it in Munich
🔻Caution: it’s a fake!

❌russia’s propaganda continues to spread the thesis of the return of peaceful life in the territories temporarily occupied by the russian army. Thus, the russian ambassador to the US officially stated that a peaceful life is being established in the territories liberated from the Nazis
🔻Caution: it’s a disinformation!

❌russia continues to influence the world community. In particular, in an interview with the Chinese news agency Xinhua, Lavrov said that the russian military in Ukraine does everything to avoid casualties among the civilian population
🔻Caution: it’s a manipulation!

The Soviet-Afghan war of the 1980’s is cited as one of the factors leading to the collapse of the Soviet Union. In that war of 10 years duration, an estimated 15,000 Soviet soldiers died. As of today, day 43 of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Russia has lost close to an estimated 19,000 soldiers. That is in one and a half months!

While the Russian invasion of Afghanistan and their invasion of Ukraine are two very different types of warfare many decades apart, the outcome will be the same. Russia will ultimately lose. And we can only hope that their loss in Ukraine will bring about the collapse of the current regime in Moscow, giving the Russian people another chance at freedom.

Russian combat losses as of 07 April, 2022

Russian combat losses as of 07 April, 2022


We are all aware at this point, we have all seen the images and footage of the war crimes (link reposted from Telegram channel Інтернет Війська України) committed by Russians in the city of Bucha, Irpin, Gostomel, and elsewhere. What more can I say? Putin and the Russian army are now perpetuating crimes against humanity on the citizens of Ukraine, not to mention killing their own soldiers- over 18,000 so far. The world must take action, and it seems to be, according to the live blog at Aljazeera.

A side note is that demonstrations in Georgia in support of Ukraine clearly show that not everyone in all countries occupied by Russia will sit idly by.  Also take note of Bosnia and Kosovo asking for NATO membership out of fear of what the future may hold. My opinion- they should be granted membership, along with Finland and Sweden, immediately. Not too subtle, but then there is nothing subtle in the “tactics” of Russia either.

And let’s not forget, that what is happening in Ukraine is still fresh in the minds of many Bosnians. How quickly we forget the lessons of history.


russian combat losses as of 05 April 2022

Russian combat losses as of 05 April 2022- Putin’s murder of his own citizens.

Latest combat loss update from the Telegram channel The Center for Countering Disinformation. Numbers in black show previous day’s totals, red are those added for yesterday.

Russian combat losses as of 02 April, 2022

Russian combat losses as of 02 April, 2022


An aside, tomorrow is the parliamentary election in Hungary. There is every indication that Viktor Orban will win, for various reasons, some of which may be the actual support of a portion of the populace. His support outside the country was impacted by his decisions on Ukraine assistance. From a Foreign Policy article from 31 March, 2022:

Hungary, a member of NATO, has not offered any military assistance to Ukraine, will not allow lethal aid from other states to cross its territory, and has promised to block European Union sanctions on Russian oil and gas, arguing it would impact Hungarian households that are already struggling with headline inflation at 8.3 percent.

As a final note we must remember that the people of Russia are not our enemies. They are prisoners, hostages of Putin’s  mafia state. But this cannot be an excuse for their lack of action any longer- now is time for them to stand up and fight. If they have half the courage of the people of Ukraine, they can retake their country from their crazed dictator, his cronies, followers, commanders in his nationalist mafia state army, and FSB.

🇺🇦 Glory to Ukraine!

From the Telegraph channel Ищи своих posted 01 April, 2022 (this is a translation from Google Translate of the text located at the bottom of the post). Tremendous incentive to surrender- money, not to mention the possibility of staying alive, and maybe even escape from Russia for good.

The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine (the Parliament of Ukraine) adopted a law providing for the establishment of material rewards for the transfer to the Armed Forces of Ukraine of military equipment suitable for use by Russian invaders. The reward is expected both for the military of the Russian Federation and for citizens of Ukraine.

It is envisaged to establish remuneration for military personnel of the armed forces, other power structures of the Russian Federation, as well as military personnel of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, other structures of the Ukrainian security and defense sector, citizens for voluntarily transferred to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, suitable for use, military equipment of the aggressor state in the following amounts:

– combat aircraft (fighter and attack aircraft) – $1,000,000;

– combat helicopter – $500,000;

– multiple launch rocket system – 25,000 – 35,000 dollars;

– tank, ground artillery (self-propelled) – $100,000;

– an infantry fighting vehicle (landing), an armored personnel carrier, an armored reconnaissance and patrol vehicle – $50,000;

– a military vehicle (truck, specialized), a military tractor, military engineering vehicles: reconnaissance, demining, minefields, bridge-laying, barriers, for laying paths, for earthmoving, for overcoming water obstacles – $ 10,000;

– ship of the 1st or 2nd rank – 1,000,000 dollars;

– a ship of 3 or 4 ranks – 500,000 dollars;

– military (auxiliary) support vessel – $200,000;

– a small-sized combat (reconnaissance) vessel – $50,000.


Верховная Рада Украины приняла закон, предусматривающий установление материального вознаграждения за передачу Вооруженным Силам Украины пригодной для использования боевой техники российских захватчиков. Вознаграждение предполагается как для военных РФ, так и для граждан Украины.

Предусмотрено установить вознаграждение военнослужащим вооруженных сил, других силовых структур РФ, а также военнослужащим Вооруженных сил Украины, других структур украинского сектора безопасности и обороны, гражданам за добровольно переданную ВСУ, пригодную для применения боевую технику государства-агрессора в следующих размерах:

– боевого самолета (истребительной и штурмовой авиации) – 1 000 000 долларов;

– боевого вертолета – 500 000 долларов;

– реактивной системы залпового огня – 25 000 – 35 000 долларов;

– танка, наземной артиллерии (самоходной) – 100 000 долларов;

– боевой машины пехоты (десанта), бронетранспортера, бронированной разведывательно-дозорной машины – 50 000 долларов;

– военного автомобиля (грузового, специализированного), военного тягача, военных инженерных машин: разведки, разминирования, минного заграждения, мостоукладных, разграждения, для прокладки путей, для осуществления землеройных работ, для преодоления водных препятствий – 10 000 долларов;

– корабля 1 или 2 ранга – 1 000 000 долларов;

– корабля 3 или 4 ранга – 500 000 долларов;

– судна военного (вспомогательного) обеспечения – 200 000 долларов;

– судна малогабаритного боевого (разведывательного) назначения – 50 000 долларов.

Glory to Ukraine! 🇺🇦

From the Telegraph channel Ищи своих –

Here is the translation:

on the conscription in April – July 2022 of citizens of the Russian Federation for military service and on the dismissal from military service of citizens undergoing military service on conscription
Guided by federal laws of May 31, 1996 No. 61-FZ “On Defense” and of March 28, 1998 No. 53-FZ “On Military Duty and Military Service”, I decided:
1. From April 1 to July 15, 2022, call up for military service citizens of the Russian Federation aged 18 to 27 years who are not in the reserve and are subject in accordance with Federal Law of March 28, 1998 N 53-FZ “On military duty and military service” call for military service, in the amount of 134,500 people.
2. In accordance with the Federal Law of March 28, 1998 N 53-FZ “On Military Duty and Military Service”, the dismissal from military service of soldiers, sailors, sergeants and foremen whose term of military service on conscription has expired.
3. The Government of the Russian Federation, executive authorities of the constituent entities of the Russian Federation and draft commissions to ensure the implementation of measures related to the conscription of citizens of the Russian Federation for military service.
4. Federal ministers, heads of federal services and federal agencies to ensure the implementation of the provisions of the Federal Law of March 28, 1998 N 53-FZ “On military duty and military service” in relation to citizens of the Russian Federation who are not in the reserve and are subject to conscription for

The text ends there; only the one page was posted on Telegraph. But it says enough.

As Russia continues to lie, and regroups for more killing- and death of their troops, Ukrainians will still stand firm.

Reposted from Інтернет Війська України (Internet Troops of Ukraine) Telegram channel.