Military Conflicts – Austerlitz 2005 http://austerlitz2005.com/ Sun, 15 May 2022 18:26:39 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://austerlitz2005.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/icon-7-150x150.png Military Conflicts – Austerlitz 2005 http://austerlitz2005.com/ 32 32 Russia learned nothing from the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05. But Ukraine can https://austerlitz2005.com/russia-learned-nothing-from-the-russo-japanese-war-of-1904-05-but-ukraine-can/ Sun, 15 May 2022 18:26:39 +0000 https://austerlitz2005.com/russia-learned-nothing-from-the-russo-japanese-war-of-1904-05-but-ukraine-can/ On television and online, commentators angrily reach for comparisons to past conflicts for insight into the Ukrainian-Russian war. How will it ever end? At the same time, military analysts are watching closely how deadly new technologies are leading to appalling slaughter like in Donbass and Irpin. What can we learn about how to fight future […]]]>

On television and online, commentators angrily reach for comparisons to past conflicts for insight into the Ukrainian-Russian war. How will it ever end?

At the same time, military analysts are watching closely how deadly new technologies are leading to appalling slaughter like in Donbass and Irpin. What can we learn about how to fight future wars?

Surprising answers emerge from comparisons to an often-overlooked conflict more than a century ago, between a small nation just making its way onto the world stage and a vast but faltering Western power that just so happened to be Russia.

The Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05 was a big deal then and is widely regarded as the first modern war. The world watched with rapt attention. In the history of this conflict we find clues to what is happening and what may happen in Vladimir Putin’s failed and bloody invasion of Ukraine.

Bolt-action rifles, machine guns and rapid-fire guns were as new in 1904 as Javelin anti-tank missiles and Turkish drones are today. They all played a role, as did swiftly maneuvering steel warships. The Japanese Navy’s destruction of the Russian Baltic Fleet, which had sailed halfway around the world, shook the world in 1905, as did the sinking of the Russian cruiser Moskva by Ukrainian missiles that month.

But that shouldn’t have been. And the struggles of the Russian military today would not surprise anyone studying the Russo-Japanese War. Streams of similarities run through these two conflicts.

Of course there were differences, the biggest being that Japan, angered by diplomatic betrayal and Russian expansion in Asia, went to war. It began with a surprise night torpedo boat attack on the Russian fleet at Port Arthur (today’s Lüshunkou District in China).

Japan’s navy was modern, its traditions based on the British Royal Navy; Japanese sailors even ate curry on Fridays like their English counterparts. (They still do.) His warships were state-of-the-art and built in England. Thus, a major Western power provided modern technology to the smaller of the warring nations, as in the current conflict.

The Japanese soldiers and sailors, swept up in their nation’s extraordinary transition to modernity, were motivated to fight. They were also well trained and fed. And they saw Russia as a greedy, overbearing tyrant.

Russian soldiers, meanwhile, quickly found themselves in the barren, wintry hellscape of Port Arthur, thousands of miles from Russia’s major urban centers – and with no real rationale in their heads as to why they were fighting. The already extraordinarily long supply lines could easily be severed. The Russian soldiers lacked equipment, training and basic supplies.

Sound familiar?

The world was sure that Russia would win. It had a vaunted military in the great European tradition. How could little upstart Japan possibly emerge victorious?

Like the conflict in Ukraine, which was livestreamed to and from smartphones, the Russo-Japanese War was witnessed around the world in near real time. Telegraph wires and steam-powered newspaper presses sent new editions onto the streets every hour to feed a hungry public.

Finally, after seven months, the Russian fleet arrived in the Far East. Alerted by telegraph from the island of Tsushima, Japanese admiral Heihachirō Tōgō set sail with his fresh, eager fleet to meet the exhausted Russians. Within a few hours, practically all Russian battleships were on the seabed.

The two countries soon had a negotiated peace. Japan had become a world power.

In Japan, people are still proud of the victory in Tsushima. The Mikasa is now a museum in Yokosuka near Tokyo. You can visit Tōgō’s hut and admire his bathtub. Perhaps one day we can admire Zelenskyi’s bathtub in Kyiv.

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Grain shortages could affect large parts of Africa https://austerlitz2005.com/grain-shortages-could-affect-large-parts-of-africa/ Fri, 13 May 2022 21:55:01 +0000 https://austerlitz2005.com/grain-shortages-could-affect-large-parts-of-africa/ A head of the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Program (FAO) said an existing food crisis in Africa was worsening. Abebe Haile-Gabriel is deputy director of the program. He said the war in Ukraine was to blame. “We have a very grim Outlook for the future,” he said of the food supply in some African […]]]>

A head of the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Program (FAO) said an existing food crisis in Africa was worsening.

Abebe Haile-Gabriel is deputy director of the program. He said the war in Ukraine was to blame.

“We have a very grim Outlook for the future,” he said of the food supply in some African countries. He noted that about half of the continent’s 54 countries depend on Russia and Ukraine for wheat. And over 11 of the countries import fertilizers from Russia.

Even before the war in Eastern Europe began in February, food prices in Africa were rising. The FAO said the cost of food staples increased by 23 percent over the past year. That’s faster than any year of the last 10.

Many African nations depend on supplies from the World Food Program. WFP’s Tomson Phiri said the cost of the program is rising as more people need help.

Grain costs in North Africa are rising because these nations import a lot from Ukraine and Russia. In other parts of Africa, people can no longer easily buy cooking oils made from soy, corn and sunflower seeds.

It is becoming difficult for Edwin Dapi from Zimbabwe to feed his wife and four children.

Dapi was looking for vegetable oil in a grocery store in Harare. The 2 liter bottle costs about $2.76. His job earns him about $50 a month.

A 2-kilogram sack of flour costs more than $1, Reuters reported.

Looking at the prices, Dapi said: “I keep hearing that it’s because of Ukraine, but I don’t know what that has to do with us.”

Existing food crisis

Africa is already facing food shortages due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, military conflicts and poor growth conditions due to climate change, experts say.

Along with the East African countries of Kenya, Ethiopia, Somalia and South Sudan, Zimbabwe is among the African countries that are struggling to feed their people. In West Africa, military conflicts in Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger and Nigeria have triggered a food crisis. Western nations are also struggling with flooding and droughts.

Kenya briefly felt safe from rising prices after it secured grocery deals with several countries last year. Kenya made the change when Russia increased export taxes. Kennedy Nyaga of Kenya’s United Grain Miller’s Association said Kenya should have enough wheat to last by September. But he was already running out of corn, also known as corn.

Maxwell Hwayo, 52, shops at a grocery store in Harare, Zimbabwe, March 17, 2022. (REUTERS/Philimon Bulawayo)

The association is asking the Kenyan government for permission to import 360,000 tons of maize without paying import taxes or duties. The group said the price of corn has risen about 60 percent since December.

Zimbabwe up close

A closer look at Zimbabwe shows the potential for a long-term food crisis as it is not as well prepared as Kenya. Food production has declined over the past 20 years due to changes in farm ownership, economic problems such as inflation and drought.

People there are already poor, according to the country’s National Bureau of Statistics, with about half of the country’s 15 million people living on less than $2 a day. They have struggled even more since March when the country gets grain miller increased wheat flour and corn prices by 15 percent, noting that food prices had risen due to the war in Ukraine.

The FAO said Zimbabwe gets about 20 percent of its wheat supply from Russia and Ukraine.

While the government says there is enough corn and wheat for this year, the Millers’ Association approved another price hike in April. The group said they were looking for more grain so there could be enough by October’s harvest.

The rise in grain and fuel prices is being passed on to ordinary people in Zimbabwe, who see it as inflation.

People shop at a grocery store in Harare, Zimbabwe, March 17, 2022. (REUTERS/Philimon Bulawayo)

People shop at a grocery store in Harare, Zimbabwe, March 17, 2022. (REUTERS/Philimon Bulawayo)

During the growing season, Zimbabwe’s farmers depend on fertilizers for a healthy crop. But the price of fertilizer is about 30 percent higher than last year.

Maria Gallar Sanchez of the World Food Program said if fertilizer costs remain high it will reduce production in Zimbabwe this year.

A company that sells fertilizers across Africa said its costs have increased by 200 to 400 percent since January 2021.

Boniface Mutize is a farmer near Harare. He said many farmers are trying to make their own fertilizer from animal waste. But it doesn’t work as well as chemical fertilizers.

He said many small farms will not be able to grow their own food in the next year.

I’m Dan Friedell.

Dan Friedell adapted this story for VOA Learning English based on Associated Press coverage.

Write to us in the comments section and visit our Facebook page.

words in this story

grim – adj. Provoke feelings of sadness or worry

bracket n. an important food that is eaten a lot

drought – n. extremely dry conditions affecting an area

miller – n. a person or company that produces flour from grain

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Obituary of David Michael Cummings – Akron Beacon Journal https://austerlitz2005.com/obituary-of-david-michael-cummings-akron-beacon-journal/ Wed, 11 May 2022 18:18:51 +0000 https://austerlitz2005.com/obituary-of-david-michael-cummings-akron-beacon-journal/ David Michael Cummings was born on 1/19/50 in Richwood, West Virginia. He grew up in Ohio and died of a weakened heart on 5-10-22. He was the son of Kenneth and Pauline (Barker) Cummings. He attended the Braunschweig Gymnasium. Michael served with distinction in the US Army during the Vietnam War. His awards include the […]]]>

David Michael Cummings was born on 1/19/50 in Richwood, West Virginia. He grew up in Ohio and died of a weakened heart on 5-10-22. He was the son of Kenneth and Pauline (Barker) Cummings. He attended the Braunschweig Gymnasium.

Michael served with distinction in the US Army during the Vietnam War. His awards include the Combat Infantry Badge, Purple Heart, Bronze Star, and Silver Star. After his military service, Michael bought and sold vehicles and everything else you can think of. He was also an agricultural machinery sales agent in Zimbabwe, Rhodesia, which was thwarted by the country’s conflicts. Michael married Dorothy McCracken, the love of his life, which he proclaimed daily. He was Kelly and Shannon Brock’s most loving stepfather.

To know Michael was to love him. He was a wonderful stepfather and beloved husband. He enjoyed visiting the American Legion on a daily basis. Known for his continuous flea markets, he loved to haggle and bargain. He was a wimp with children and his nieces and nephews never left his house without a gift. Michael had an extraordinarily unique sense of humor. He could make anyone laugh, even in the worst of situations. He had a heart of gold and can never be replaced. He will always be in our hearts.

Michael is preceded in death by his parents Kenneth and Pauline Cummings, his nephew Charles W. Payne II, and his cousin Lloyd Barker. Michael is survived by his stepchildren Kelly and Shannon, his siblings Kenneth Cummings and Patti Payne (Paul); his nieces Stephanie Payne, Sonja Halstead (Payne) and Deborah Wise (Payne). His family also includes many nieces and nephews: John, Brittany, Anthony, Daniel, Derek, Jocelyn, Olivia, Kayla, Kenny, Gavin and Chasity.

Celebration of Life will be held at 7 p.m. Friday, May 13 at the Hilliard-Rospert Funeral Home at 174 North Lyman Street, Wadsworth, Ohio 44281.

Hilliard-Rospert

330-334-1501

www.HilliardRospert.com

Posted May 11, 2022

Published in the Akron Beacon Journal

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The Falklands War still has military lessons for China and other countries https://austerlitz2005.com/the-falklands-war-still-has-military-lessons-for-china-and-other-countries/ Mon, 09 May 2022 22:35:45 +0000 https://austerlitz2005.com/the-falklands-war-still-has-military-lessons-for-china-and-other-countries/ Forty years ago, Britain and Argentina went to war over the Falkland Islands. The Falklands War included major operations by air, sea, and ground forces. Decades later, the war still shapes the thinking of military leaders faced with similar scenarios. Loading Something is loading. In April 1982, Argentine commandos landed in the Falkland Islands, a […]]]>
  • Forty years ago, Britain and Argentina went to war over the Falkland Islands.
  • The Falklands War included major operations by air, sea, and ground forces.
  • Decades later, the war still shapes the thinking of military leaders faced with similar scenarios.

In April 1982, Argentine commandos landed in the Falkland Islands, a remote, rugged archipelago in the South Atlantic.

The Falkland Islands were British territory claimed by Argentina, and the invasion came after years of tension between the British government and Argentina’s ruling military junta.

Once on the ground, the Argentine special forces went straight to the British governor’s house, the seat of local government. The small garrison of Royal Marine Commandos barricaded themselves there, but surrendered after a short, fierce firefight.

Photos of captured British troops – marching with their arms raised or lying flat on their stomachs – soon circulated around the world as Argentines partied in the streets, adding to British feelings of humiliation.

British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher promised a strong response given her own domestic challenges. The clash that ensued was one of the largest but least-remembered conflicts between major forces of the second half of the 20th century.

A Conflict of the “First”

Argentine Naval General Belgrano Falklands War

Argentine Navy cruiser ARA General Belgrano sinks on May 2, 1982.

Rafael WOLLMANN/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images


Just 300 miles from mainland Argentina, the Falkland Islands have been a sore point between Argentina and Britain for centuries. Argentina has contested British control of the islands since British settlers colonized them in the 19th century.

In many ways the Falklands War was a conflict of the “First”. Both sides had competent militaries with strong air, sea and ground forces, making it the first major conventional combined arms conflict since World War II.

On the afternoon of May 2, the British nuclear submarine HMS Conqueror fired three Mark 8 torpedoes at the ARA General Belgrano, an Argentine light cruiser. Two torpedoes found their target, sinking the warship and killing 323 of its 1,100-strong crew.

The Conqueror was only the second submarine to sink a warship in combat since World War II – a distinction it still holds.

As the British Armada approached the islands in the spring of 1982, the famous British Special Air Service launched their largest commando attack since the end of World War II.

British aircraft carrier HMS Hermes Harrier Sea King

British aircraft carrier HMS Hermes departs Portsmouth harbor loaded with Harrier jump jets and Sea King helicopters, April 5, 1982.

Bryn Colton/Getty Images


On the night of May 14, an SAS squadron of about 45 soldiers attacked Argentina’s Pebble Island air base. Argentine attack aircraft stationed there could threaten the British invading force en route to the Falkland Islands.

The raid was successful. SAS operators destroyed all 11 aircraft at the airbase and knocked out a radar station without suffering serious casualties. A few days later, however, 18 SAS soldiers, some of whom had been at Pebble Island, were killed when a Sea King helicopter crashed into the Atlantic during a routine inter-ship flight.

The war almost saw another first at sea.

The aircraft carriers of the two navies almost became involved in the first aircraft carrier battle since World War II. Only the weather prevented the Argentine ARA Veinticinco de Mayo and the British HMS Invincible and HMS Hermes from colliding in the South Atlantic.

Both navies were very concerned about each other’s anti-ship weapons throughout the war. Argentine missiles claimed one of the container ships the British had converted into an aircraft carrier and the destroyer HMS Sheffield, the first Royal Navy warship to be sunk since World War II.

Educational to this day

Wreckage of an Argentine armored car in the Falkland Islands

An Argentine Panhard armored personnel carrier, destroyed during the Falklands War, was seen near Stanley Airport on March 21, 2007.

DANIEL GARCIA/AFP via Getty Images


Chinese military planners have examined the Falklands War for potential similarities to a conflict with Taiwan, particularly if the US comes to Taiwan’s defense. Beijing regards Taiwan as a breakaway province and has vowed to take it over, by force if necessary.

The Falkland Islands and Taiwan are both relatively small and isolated. Britain is more than 8,000 miles from the Falkland Islands. Taiwan is 1,700 miles from Guam, the US military’s main hub in the western Pacific, and about 5,100 miles from Pearl Harbor, the US Navy’s home base in the Pacific.

Judging by Chinese military journals, China’s People’s Liberation Army pays special attention to the role of British special forces in the Falkland Islands.

Argentina veterans Malvinas Falklands dagger fighter jet

Argentine Falklands War veterans next to a Dagger fighter plane at the Malvinas War Memorial in Pilar, Argentina, March 7, 2022.

JUAN MABROMATA/AFP via Getty Images


The SAS and their naval brothers, the Special Boat Service, were critical to the British victory.

The two units conducted direct operations, conducted special reconnaissance, coordinated long-range fire and undertook unconventional warfare missions – all of which enabled British conventional forces to defeat the Argentines and retake the Falkland Islands.

The Chinese military may wish to replicate this British success, using special forces to undermine Taiwan’s defenses and pave the way for conventional Chinese forces.

The Falklands War was one of the most complex conflicts of the 20th century, but it has largely been forgotten. Forty years later, however, it still influences the doctrine and planning of militaries around the world.

Stavros Atlamazoglou is a defense journalist specializing in special operations, a veteran of the Hellenic Army (national service with the 575th Marine Battalion and Army Headquarters) and a graduate of Johns Hopkins University.

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Egypt has harvested over 700,000 wheat feddan since April https://austerlitz2005.com/egypt-has-harvested-over-700000-wheat-feddan-since-april/ Sun, 08 May 2022 10:14:23 +0000 https://austerlitz2005.com/egypt-has-harvested-over-700000-wheat-feddan-since-april/ Egypt has harvested more than 700,000 feddans of local wheat since the April 1 harvest season. Egyptian Finance Minister Mohamed Maait said the country had set aside $59.69 million for a down payment to state grain buyers to buy wheat from local farmers. As one of the world’s largest wheat importers, Egypt is heavily dependent […]]]>

Egypt has harvested more than 700,000 feddans of local wheat since the April 1 harvest season.

Egyptian Finance Minister Mohamed Maait said the country had set aside $59.69 million for a down payment to state grain buyers to buy wheat from local farmers.

As one of the world’s largest wheat importers, Egypt is heavily dependent on supplies from Ukraine and Russia, and its government has sought alternative supplies from countries such as India and France.

Supply Minister Ali al-Moselhi said Egypt has 2.6 million tons of imported wheat and aims to collect 5.5-6 million tons of local grain; Therefore, strategic wheat reserves can last 6-9 months.

Meanwhile, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) said Ukraine is the eighth wheat producer with about 25 million tons and fifth in corn production with 3.3 million tons.

FOA said that due to the war with Russia, nearly 25 million tons of grain were stuck in Ukraine with blockades in ports

Food prices remain high despite the decline, mainly due to the combination of military conflict in Ukraine and sanctions against Russia.

The FAO’s food price index fell just 0.8 percent compared to March.

Josef Schmidhuber, FAO Deputy Director, Markets and Trade Department, described the situation as “grotesque”.

“We are seeing in Ukraine at the moment almost 25 million tons of grain that could be exported, but simply cannot leave the country due to the lack of infrastructure, the blockade of the ports.”

Another concern was that around 700,000 tons of grain in Ukraine may have “disappeared”.

Schmidhuber warned that there were no “statistics” about possible thefts.

“There is anecdotal evidence that Russian troops have destroyed storage capacity and that they are looting available stored grain,” he said. “They also steal agricultural equipment.”

According to the Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW), the loss of the Ukraine as a grain supplier particularly jeopardizes the feeding of the African population.

IfW trade researcher Henrik Mahlkow explained that Ukraine is likely to be cut off from the global economy as a result of the war, after trade routes have been cut, infrastructure destroyed and all remaining production factors are likely to be converted to a war economy.

“Since the country is one of the most important grain exporters in the world and particularly relevant for Africa, the loss of Ukraine as a supplier will noticeably worsen the supply situation on the entire continent,” said Mahlkow.

According to the institute, the consequences would also be felt in Germany, albeit far less dramatically.

The institute’s economists created a trade model to simulate Africa’s long-term consequences of a halt to exports of Ukrainian wheat and other food grains, such as corn and sorghum.

Cereals used as animal feed, such as maize, were not included in the model calculations. Accordingly, Tunisia and Egypt in particular would be negatively affected.

Egypt would import over 17 percent less wheat and almost 19 percent less other grains, while South Africa would import 7 percent less wheat and over 16 percent less other grains.


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Biden’s $33 billion Ukraine aid proposal is unlike anything we’ve seen – Mother Jones https://austerlitz2005.com/bidens-33-billion-ukraine-aid-proposal-is-unlike-anything-weve-seen-mother-jones/ Thu, 05 May 2022 10:04:06 +0000 https://austerlitz2005.com/bidens-33-billion-ukraine-aid-proposal-is-unlike-anything-weve-seen-mother-jones/ President Joe Biden tours a Lockheed Martin facility in Alabama that produces Javelin anti-tank missiles.Evan Vucci/AP Facts count: Sign up for free Mother Jones daily Newsletter. support our nonprofit reporting. Subscribe to to our print magazine. In the little over two months since Russia invaded Ukraine, the United States has be committed $14 billion in […]]]>

President Joe Biden tours a Lockheed Martin facility in Alabama that produces Javelin anti-tank missiles.Evan Vucci/AP

Facts count: Sign up for free Mother Jones daily Newsletter. support our nonprofit reporting. Subscribe to to our print magazine.

In the little over two months since Russia invaded Ukraine, the United States has be committed $14 billion in money and arms to the Ukrainians. That’s an extraordinary sum, more than three times the amount of US aid Ukraine has received since 2014the year Russia annexed Crimea.

But last week President Joe Biden blew that number. He asked Lawmakers for $33 billion in aid consisting of defense weapons and economic aid. If Congress approves Biden’s request, in less than a year the US government will have transferred $47 billion to Ukraine, more money than all but a handful of countries combined have ever received from the United States.

“It’s almost unprecedented to scoop so much aid into a country in such a short amount of time,” William Hartung, a senior research fellow at the Quincy Institute for Responsible Statecraft, told me. Only four countries have received more than $30 billion in lifelong aid from the United States, and two of those – Iraq and Afghanistan – have been the scene of protracted US conflicts.

The extent of US involvement in Ukraine was hotly debated even before the Russian invasion. biden pledged US troops will not be involved in the fighting, saying their movement in the region is purely defensive. “We will not wage war against Russia in Ukraine,” Biden said called March. “A direct conflict between NATO and Russia is World War III, something we must try to prevent.”

To stay out of a direct fight with Russia, Biden has ignored it Ukrainian print establish a no-fly zone and rejected a Polish plan to deploy fighter jets to Ukraine. But when it comes to military and humanitarian aid, he is remarkably less self-conscious. Even before his $33 billion request, Biden had announced shipments of anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons, as well as rocket artillery and “more than 50 million rounds of ammunition.”

Ukraine has received a variety of other weapons from more than two dozen other countries, but the United States is by far the largest contributor to lethal aid, according to a tracking sheet maintained by the Forum on the Arms Trade. Even countries like Germany and Italy that didn’t want to get involved in the conflict have sent weapons like Stinger surface-to-air missiles.

“The amount of arms being shipped to Ukraine is spectacular at the rate it is progressing,” said Jeff Abramson, a senior Arms Control Association official who helped maintain the tracking sheet.

The Ukrainian military has more experience handling Russian or even Soviet weapons, so some countries have dug deep into their arsenals to find suitable weapons to ship. Because many of these weapons require “non-standard” ammunition – meaning they don’t meet NATO specifications – the State Department explains problematic issued a declaration of emergency last month allowing their transfer.

Military aid to Ukraine was an oddly important issue in US politics, and served as a central part of Donald Trump’s first impeachment. But long before Trump attempted to use U.S. aid to wreak political dirt on Biden’s family, Barack Obama balked at sending Javelin missiles to Ukraine when the country held off Russian aggression in 2014 — and staked a large part in doing so of his national security team, according to the Washington Post.

That moment now seems like a distant memory as Ukraine has become one of the largest recipients of US aid in history. On Tuesday, Biden even visited a Lockheed Martin plant in Alabama to see the making of javelins up close. “They allow Ukrainians to defend themselves,” he said called there, “and frankly, they make a fool of the Russian military.”

With Biden’s backing, the auxiliary tap doesn’t seem to be turning off anytime soon. “We are still in an escalation phase of this war,” Abramson said. As the United States continues to play a key role in supporting the Ukrainian resistance, pundits like Abramson are hoping for a government watchdog — perhaps a special inspector general of the kind appointed by Congress during the Afghan war– to ensure US aid is spent appropriately. “There’s so much going in, and it’s not that big of an army,” Abramson said, referring to the Ukrainian military. “Is it able to use, maintain and manage the weapons effectively?”

Defense contractors looking to capitalize on Biden’s plea for help certainly hope so. While the defense result in the first quarter actually rejected As arms makers sever ties with Russia, industry leaders expect those profits to rebound thanks to Biden’s massive investment. Raytheon CEO Greg Hayes spoke on a conference call last week about the results called Defense spending, which should have risen ahead of the Russian invasion, is on a better track “than we expected”.

It is still unclear what that trajectory will be should the war draw to a stalemate. Will US targets shift to a full-fledged proxy war against Russia? Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin spoke about it weakening So Russia cannot launch a similar invasion. Is that now the primary US goal, or is Biden still intent on avoiding direct conflict with Russia? Eventually he will have to articulate those limits, but as Hartung said, a debate about rolling back US involvement “doesn’t seem to be an option in Washington right now.”

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Military hospitality returns as Pentagon reopens for tours > US Department of Defense > Department of Defense news https://austerlitz2005.com/military-hospitality-returns-as-pentagon-reopens-for-tours-us-department-of-defense-department-of-defense-news/ Mon, 02 May 2022 22:27:27 +0000 https://austerlitz2005.com/military-hospitality-returns-as-pentagon-reopens-for-tours-us-department-of-defense-department-of-defense-news/ The Department of Defense has reopened its doors to military-style hospitality. Beginning May 10, visitors can again take a limited tour of the Pentagon and see where the world’s greatest military minds plan to defend the nation. In recent years, school groups, Boy Scouts and others have been able to register to take a tour […]]]>

The Department of Defense has reopened its doors to military-style hospitality. Beginning May 10, visitors can again take a limited tour of the Pentagon and see where the world’s greatest military minds plan to defend the nation.

In recent years, school groups, Boy Scouts and others have been able to register to take a tour of one of the largest office buildings in the world and visit the numerous exhibits in the building, which, among other things, pay tribute to military service and commemorate military conflicts and veterans, highlight U.S. military relationships with partner nations, recognize the contributions of outstanding individuals, and provide information on issues important to the nation’s defense

Tours were suspended in March 2020 due to concerns about the spread of COVID-19. But the doors are opening again, Pentagon press secretary John F. Kirby told reporters during an afternoon briefing today.

“I am pleased to announce that the Pentagon will reopen tours on a limited basis on May 10,” Kirby told reporters, flanked by a group of Pentagon tour guides from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and guarding the coast.

“They have been preparing here for some time to present the more than 30 exhibits that show the history and achievements of the US Armed Forces and Department of Defense,” Kirby said of the tour guides. “These are our finest young men and women. … They represent the best of the best in every ministry. It takes a lot to become a member of the Ceremonial Guard and then from there become a Pentagon tour guide. I know how excited they are to get back to work and move on. And I know how proud they will continue to make us all.”

Kirby said tours of the Pentagon will be held on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. — a more limited schedule from the pre-COVID-19 norm — and that those interested can schedule a Pentagon tour by visiting the Defense Department‘s website.

The in-depth Pentagon tours cover approximately 1.5 miles on foot and last about an hour.

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UN-Broken Ceasefire in Yemen Shows UN and Diplomacy Can End Conflict – The Organization for World Peace https://austerlitz2005.com/un-broken-ceasefire-in-yemen-shows-un-and-diplomacy-can-end-conflict-the-organization-for-world-peace/ Sun, 01 May 2022 03:59:18 +0000 https://austerlitz2005.com/un-broken-ceasefire-in-yemen-shows-un-and-diplomacy-can-end-conflict-the-organization-for-world-peace/ The ceasefire between Houthi rebels and the former government is a cautious but positive step towards a stable peace between Yemen’s warring factions and gives hope that the longstanding conflict is nearing its end. The active involvement of the United Nations in brokering the ceasefire and the pressure on both sides to engage in peace […]]]>

The ceasefire between Houthi rebels and the former government is a cautious but positive step towards a stable peace between Yemen’s warring factions and gives hope that the longstanding conflict is nearing its end. The active involvement of the United Nations in brokering the ceasefire and the pressure on both sides to engage in peace talks has shown that international institutions and diplomacy have a crucial role to play in bringing conflicts to a peaceful end around the world.

This is Yemen’s first coordinated ceasefire since 2016 and includes a cessation of all attacks from inside and outside the country. It also allows the resumption of commercial flights to the country’s capital, Sana’a, and for fuel ships calling at the rebel-held port of Hodeida. The two-month truce has mostly kept in the first week with oil shipments reaching Hodeida, including vessels blocked from entry for over 80 days.

The conflict began in 2014 when Houthi rebels took Sanaa after years of political instability in Yemen that led to the ouster of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh. This quickly escalated into a bitter proxy war between the former government, backed by the Saudi-led coalition, and the Iran-backed Houthis. To make matters worse, radical Islamic groups quickly became involved, including al-Qaeda and the Islamic State.

It can also be argued that the international community is to blame. The United States, United Kingdom, France and Australia have provided military aid to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, which has directly impacted the lives and deaths of innocent civilians. Many of these countries are also currently considering labeling the Houthi as a terrorist organization, which would prevent humanitarian aid from being sent to rebel-held areas where civilians are at risk of starvation.

The UN has also imposed an arms embargo on the Houthis at the UAE’s urging. While preventing weapons from entering conflict zones is admirable, it has created an unbalanced situation where civilians in rebel-held areas are now vulnerable to unsupported attacks.

Fighting was fierce, with daily airstrikes by Saudi and UAE forces, as well as indiscriminate rocket attacks launched from Houthi-controlled areas or from Iranian territory. It is estimated that hundreds of thousands of people have been killed in Yemen, including children.

While the situation in Yemen remains highly volatile, the ceasefire provides a much-needed respite for civilians grappling with a desperate humanitarian situation that has resulted in the deaths of tens of thousands of people, including children. To make matters worse, the ongoing conflict has crippled the country’s economy and destroyed its infrastructure, pushing even more people into extreme poverty, food insecurity and malnutrition.

The United Nations has previously described Yemen as the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, and the numbers back up the legitimacy of that claim. It is estimated that over 20 million People are in dire need of humanitarian assistance and 4.2 million people have been internally displaced. Women and girls in particular have been disproportionately affected by the conflict: 3 million are at risk of gender-based violence, a 63 percent increase in the past two years. Child marriages also take place to reduce the number of mouths to feed and to serve as a source of income to buy food and electricity. This reveals an increasingly desperate situation.

Nonetheless, it must be said that the recent ceasefire, if it holds, represents a significant step forward. Through its efforts, the United Nations has and can play a crucial role in ending the conflict. First and foremost, the United Nations must involve all key stakeholders in any upcoming peace negotiations, as only then can a meaningful agreement be reached. The United Nations currently only recognizes the Houthis and the previous government, which has previously led to deadlocked talks. A better solution is to expand the negotiations to reflect the complexity of the conflict by including tribal, separatist and civil society groups. This ensures that Yemen is better represented, giving the peace talks a better chance of success.

The West must also halt all military aid to the Saudi-led coalition. First and foremost, this would minimize the coalition’s ability to attack civilian infrastructure through the use of advanced weapons that have already claimed the lives of many innocent civilians.

With the UN-backed arms embargo against the Houthis still in place, it would also remove a long-held obstacle to negotiations, which would hopefully lead to progress in peace talks. The United Nations must also pressure the regional actors involved, namely Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Iran, to find a mutually beneficial solution to the conflict. With Yemenis themselves being most affected by this proxy conflict, it is important that these nations find common ground through diplomacy to end human suffering and attacks on civilians. This can be achieved through multilateral talks led by the United Nations and through the imposition of sanctions on those who stand in the way of a peace agreement or break the ceasefire.

Finally, as the ceasefire holds and peace talks move forward, it is vital that the United Nations and regional partners provide adequate humanitarian assistance to help those suffering hunger and malnutrition. Funds should also be made available to support the country’s reconstruction, including support to revitalize the economy and infrastructure such as roads, bridges and buildings. This will help Yemenis slowly emerge from a disastrous decade of political instability, economic collapse and crippling conflict.

The conflict in Yemen is a prime example of a civil war that has turned into a proxy struggle, disproportionately affecting the lives of innocent civilians through brutal conflict and state collapse. As the regional powers, the West and the United Nations are all involved in this struggle, they all have a moral obligation to ensure the ceasefire holds and peace talks continue so Yemenis can dream of a brighter, peaceful future.

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The Ukrainian flag flies alongside the New Zealand flag during Anzac Day commemorations in Auckland https://austerlitz2005.com/the-ukrainian-flag-flies-alongside-the-new-zealand-flag-during-anzac-day-commemorations-in-auckland/ Sun, 24 Apr 2022 22:29:39 +0000 https://austerlitz2005.com/the-ukrainian-flag-flies-alongside-the-new-zealand-flag-during-anzac-day-commemorations-in-auckland/ At the request of the RSA, the flag of Ukraine could be seen above the museum during the service. The New Zealand, Australian and Union Jack flags were also featured. Governor General Dame Cindy Kiro also showed New Zealand’s support for Ukraine during her speech at the commemoration in Wellington. “Anzac Day in 2022 wearies […]]]>

At the request of the RSA, the flag of Ukraine could be seen above the museum during the service. The New Zealand, Australian and Union Jack flags were also featured.

Governor General Dame Cindy Kiro also showed New Zealand’s support for Ukraine during her speech at the commemoration in Wellington.

“Anzac Day in 2022 wearies us from the stress of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and witnesses disturbing new discord around the world,” said Dame Kiro.

“We feel deeply for those who are suffering from the current conflicts. For them, the simple pleasures of ordinary life — home and family, work and friends — have been replaced by the daily struggle to keep themselves and loved ones safe. Her new reality is one of trauma, grief, and displacement.

“While there is much we cannot do as individuals, as the light of a new day spreads across Pukeahu and Aotearoa, we can choose to continue to be there for one another and for all who have been affected by war and conflict – past and present.”

Prince Charles also alluded to the conflict in a written statement.

“As we pause to reflect on the sacrifice of personnel in the armed forces of Australia and New Zealand in two world wars and in other conflicts and peacekeeping operations, our thoughts will also be with the communities around the world who are being torn apart by violence and conflict, and those who are fighting for freedom in the face of oppression,” he said.

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USA in “the most dangerous time in history”: Donald Trump https://austerlitz2005.com/usa-in-the-most-dangerous-time-in-history-donald-trump/ Sat, 23 Apr 2022 02:01:39 +0000 https://austerlitz2005.com/usa-in-the-most-dangerous-time-in-history-donald-trump/ Joe Biden’s presidency was disastrous for America’s international stance, former US President Donald Trump claimed Thursday at a Heritage Foundation event in Florida. He believes the hasty withdrawal from Afghanistan has weakened Washington in the eyes of its opponents, including China, Russia and Iran. “China no longer respects us, Iran no longer fears us, and […]]]>

Joe Biden’s presidency was disastrous for America’s international stance, former US President Donald Trump claimed Thursday at a Heritage Foundation event in Florida. He believes the hasty withdrawal from Afghanistan has weakened Washington in the eyes of its opponents, including China, Russia and Iran.

“China no longer respects us, Iran no longer fears us, and Russia, with its monstrous invasion of Ukraine, has shown how weak they consider our leaders to be,” Trump said during the event, adding that such developments make America “most dangerous period in our country’s history right now.”

Former President Donald Trump blamed the hasty withdrawal from Afghanistan for the Taliban to take over the country in an all-out offensive. “Our nation was humiliated in Afghanistan, where we killed soldiers, left American hostages and … left American military equipment behind,” Trump said. “We surrendered.”

The ex-president has also claimed that although his administration also planned to withdraw American troops from Afghanistan, if he had been allowed to accomplish what he did, the US would withdraw “with dignity, great dignity and great force.” had planned to do.

Donald Trump has also claimed he would keep the US presence alive Bagram Air Force Base – once the largest US facility in Afghanistan north of the country’s capital Kabul – just to monitor China’s activities.

“[The base] Because an hour away from where China makes its nuclear weapons [sic] Billions and billions of dollars to build many years ago and right now it looks to me like China will end up owning and operating Bagram,” the former president pointed out.

Former US President Donald Trump has also claimed he would not have allowed Russia to attack Ukraine if he had stayed in the White House. “They would never have done that under the Trump administration. Never, not even a possibility,” he stressed, adding that Moscow has not been involved in any new military conflicts during his presidency.

“Russia took Georgia under President Bush. They took Crimea under President Obama. They didn’t accuse me of anything, nothing,” he said, adding that this was despite withdrawing US troops from Syria and Iraq and reducing America’s presence in Afghanistan.

The ex-president specifically referred to a brief military conflict between Russia and Georgia in 2008, when Moscow backed the self-proclaimed republics of South Ossetia and Abkhazia after Georgian forces shelled the South Ossetian capital Tskhinval and killed Russian peacekeepers. Although Tbilisi has lost control of the breakaway republics since 1991, most nations still consider the territories part of Georgia.

Russia “took” no territories during the 2008 conflict, but helped drive Georgian forces out of South Ossetia and Abkhazia, and thereafter recognized both republics. In response, Tbilisi severed diplomatic relations with Moscow.

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