Voices from Russia

Thursday, 21 August 2014

25 Percent of Military Households Rely on Food Banks

01 See no Evil

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Editor:

Here’s my modest suggestion… in the contemporary USA, two incomes are necessary to raise a family due to the draconian anti-family programme of the US Republican Party (they have the brass balls to call themselves “pro-lifers”). When the economy crashed in 2008 due to the stresses upon it by the unfunded Bush wars and notional giveaways to the Affluent Effluent, many spouses of military personnel lost their jobs. As this situation arose due to the crank policies of the Republican Party, we should raise a special tax on all Republican politicians/lawmakers (including GOP-appointed judges on all levels) and Rightwing pundits… we should levy a 20 percent surcharge on their incomes “to support the troops”… I think that you’d hear some loud yelps. Here’s the Vaseline, Antonin n’ Willy n’ Rush n’ Paul… note well that they enjoy fucking others, but hoo boy, when it hits them… you get my drift…

BMD

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Recently, an exhaustive hunger report concluded that 25 percent of military members rely on food banks. After compiling four years of data, Feeding America (FA)… the nation’s leading domestic hunger-relief charity… released its largest and most comprehensive study on the topic and found that one in seven people rely on food banks to get their basic nutrition needs. Perhaps one of the most stunning figures was that in 2012, almost 620,000 of the households who relied on FA services had at least one member now in the military. That’s 25 percent of all American military households. These figures included military members serving full or part-time in either the Armed Forces, Reserves, or National Guard.

However, the Pentagon was quick to take issue with the study’s methodology in measuring the number of struggling military members. Military.com reported that officials said that surveying households instead of individuals and using those figures against military data creates an inaccurate picture. Navy Commander Nathan Christensen, a Pentagon spokesman, told the news outlet, “Without performing appropriate statistical adjustments to match the survey sample with the military population, it’s impossible to accurately calculate an estimated percentage of military households served by the Feeding America’s programs based on the survey data”. Christensen also told NPR that military pay and benefits compare favourably with the private sector, and that service members can always seek counselling should they face financial problems.

However, advocates say that troops are often too ashamed to draw such attention to themselves within the confines of the military, which is why getting help from food banks is often more appealing. Joyce Raezer, executive director of the National Military Family Association, told NPR, “The reason they go to the food bank is it’s anonymous” . Back in 2011, the FISH food bank in Lakewood WA, located near Joint Base Lewis-McChord (JBLM), started to see a “surprising” increase in the numbers of military members in need of help. While JBLM offers a housing allowance to families who live off-post and programmes to help struggling families, some say it’s not enough. Frances Anderson, whose husband was on active duty at the time, told KING 5 News, “My husband is embarrassed because he doesn’t feel that we should have to be here. The economy is terrible. I just tell the people on post that I need help and they just look at me like I’m crazy”.

Find out how you can get involved with Feeding America’s efforts here

19 August 2014

Eleanor Goldberg

Huffington Post

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/08/19/military-families-food-banks_n_5691790.html

Brisk, But Without Hustle

00 russian naval infantry. kerch. crimea. 21.08.14

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Our Ukrainian naval infantry battalion rallied to the Russian side. The beginning of 2014 was a rough time for our unit. In December 2013, they transferred us from the army to the Ukrainian Navy. We had to master the basics of naval infantry tactics and modify our training facilities. In late February, our unit faced a detachment of the Crimean forces and it seemed that an attack could come at any time. When we reported the deteriorating situation to higher headquarters, they kept telling us, “Hold on!” Meanwhile, supplies from the Minoborony Ukrainy practically ceased, but well-wishers gave us a special bank card to have money for food. We felt like they’d just abandoned us to our fate.

In early March, soldiers in Russian field uniforms without insignia showed up outside our base. Looking at their kit, we deduced that they were paratroopers. Their CO explained his orders to us… he wouldn’t allow provocations from either side of the fence and he wouldn’t allow any weapons to leave the base. Military professionals could easily assess that these guys were proficient, well-trained, composed, and self-confident. They gave crisp commands, carried them out expeditiously, but without haste. Their signals discipline was good… everything was succinct and unambiguous. Even the way that they carried their weapons showed that they used them as an extension of themselves. Obviously, this was a bunch of pros. Our contractors tried to establish closer contacts with them, but they kept a correct distance. They kept to themselves; they didn’t mingle with the locals who milled about the base entrance.  There wasn’t an ounce of arrogance or bravado in their conduct, but we were well aware that this was a serious set of dudes.

At the same time, we noticed that they sympathised with our difficult situation. Every day, we saw how the contemporary Russian army acts when it carries out live operations. There’s no doubt that this behaviour influenced the majority of my troops to choose to serve under the St Andrew banner. On the day that we were to choose which side we’d serve on, Major General Aleksandr Ostrikov, the commander of the coastal forces of the Black Sea Fleet, came to visit us. With utmost objectivity, correctness, and in full detail, he described the situation and laid out to my people the choices that were before them. The next day, I formed up the battalion and announced that I’d chosen to serve Russia. Three-quarters of my battalion supported me. Now, we engage in intensive combat training, and our training will soon be on par with the terse paratroopers who stood before our gates in those tense days. The battalion understands that we’ll have to put forth more effort to learn the dynamics of our new service. However, it’s worth it if we can follow in the footsteps of those “polite people” in Russian military uniform…

19 August 2014

Lieutenant Colonel Aleksandr Saenko

Commander, 501 Naval Infantry Battalion

Kerch (Republic of Crimea) RUSSIAN FEDERATION

Krasnaya Zvezda

http://www.redstar.ru/index.php/component/k2/item/18021-vezhlivye-lyudi-silnoj-rossii

Monday, 18 August 2014

Junta Thunders About Victory in the Donbass by 24 August… Does It Have the Means to Achieve Such?

00 Bloody Pyotr. P A Poroshenko. 01.07.14

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If the junta wants victory by 24 August, the most pressing question for objective observers is, “What part of the junta forces aren’t yet involved in the repression operation in Novorossiya?  What units are available to reinforce their striking force?”

Forces available for operations:

Mechanised and tank units:

  • 1 Tank Brigade (8 Army Corps). Goncharovskiy (Chernigov Oblast)
  • 17 Tank Brigade (6 Army Corps). Krivoi Rog (Dnepropetrovsk Oblast)
  • 24 Mechanised Brigade (13 Army Corps). Yavorov (Lvov Oblast)
  • 28 Mechanised Brigade (6 Army Corps). Chernomorsk (Odessa Oblast)
  • 30 Mechanised Brigade (8 Army Corps). Novograd-Volynsky (Zhitomir Oblast)
  • 51 Mechanised Brigade (13 Army Corps). Vladimir-Volynsky (Volyn Oblast)
  • 72 Mechanised Brigade (8 Army Corps). Belaya Tserkov (Kiev Oblast)
  • 92 Mechanised Brigade (6 Army Corps). Klugino-Bashkirovka (Kharkov Oblast)
  • 93 Mechanised Brigade (6 Army Corps). Cherkasskoe (Dnepropetrovsk Oblast)
  • 128 Separate Mountain Infantry Brigade (13 Army Corps). Mukačevo (Zakarpatskaya Oblast)
  • 169 Training Centre “Desna” (under Land Forces Command). Desna (Chernigov Oblast)
  • 19 Missile Brigade (under Land Forces Command). Khmelnitsky (Khmelnitsky Oblast)
  • 11 Artillery Brigade (13 Army Corps). Ternopol (Ternopol Oblast)
  • 26 Artillery Brigade (8 Army Corps). Berdichev (Zhitomir Oblast)
  • 55 Artillery Brigade (6 Army Corps). Zaporozhe (Zaporozhe Oblast)
  • 15 Rocket Artillery Regiment (13 Army Corps). Drogobych (Lvov Oblast)
  • 107 Rocket Artillery Regiment. (8 Army Corps) Kremenchug (Poltava Oblast)
  • 27 Rocket Artillery Regiment. (Army Corps). Sumy (Sumy Oblast)
  • 25 Separate Airborne Brigade. Gvardeiskoe (Dnepropetrovsk Oblast)
  • 79 Separate Airborne Brigade. Nikolayev (Nikolayev Oblast)/Bolgrad (Odessa Oblast)
  • 80 Separate Airborne Brigade. Lvov (Lvov Oblast)/Chernovtsy (Chernovtsy Oblast)
  • 95 Separate Airborne Brigade. Zhitomir (Zhitomir Oblast)
  • 28 Separate Airmobile Training Battalion. Desna (Chernigov Oblast)

Now, let’s see what the actual forces are, as opposed to the “paper” forces.

Training Units not available for deployment:

  • 169 Training Centre “Desna” (under Land Forces Command). Desna (Chernigov Oblast)
  • 28 Separate Airmobile Training Battalion (under Land Forces Command). Desna (Chernigov Oblast)

The artillery units deployed as reinforcements to other units, now partly decimated in battle on a level with the units that they’re attached to. The Armoured Brigades broken up, scattered along the front (in packets of 1-2 companies) to act as shock troops in the offensive.

Units decimated in previous battles:

  • 24 Mechanised Brigade (13 Army Corps). Yavorov (Lvov Oblast): One battalion decimated in the southern “cauldron”. The other two decimated in fighting on 12-14 August near Saur-Mogily Raion. Remnants declared “deserters”, withdrawn to Melitopol.
  • 30 Mechanised Brigade (8 Army Corps). Novograd-Volynsky (Zhitomir Oblast): Two battalions destroyed in the Krasny Luch fighting (early-mid-August), but one battalion still in the line.
  • 72 Mechanised Brigade (8 Army Corps). Belaya Tserkov (Kiev Oblast): Completely smashed in southern “cauldron”, remnants only number about 400 effectives. Declared “deserters”, scattered in different places.
  • 79 Separate Airmobile Brigade. Nikolayev (Nikolayev Oblast)/Bolgrad (Odessa Oblast): Defeated in southern “cauldron” (beginning of August) with only about 400 effectives remaining, withdrawn to the rear.

Units decimated in recent battles:

  • 25 Separate Airborne Brigade. Gvardeiskoe (Dnepropetrovsk Oblast): One battalion destroyed near Shakhtyorsk (beginning of August). Another battalion decimated in Marinovki-Kozhevni Raion a few days ago.
  • 51 Mechanised Brigade 13 (Army Corps). Vladimir-Volyn (Volyn Oblast): Decimated in the southern “cauldron” (beginning of August)
  • 95 Separate Airmobile Brigade. Zhitomir (Zhitomir Oblast): Committed to the front since the early days of the fighting, with heavy losses. Perhaps, the best unit in the junta forces. One of its battalion participated in the fighting in Krasny Luch. This battalion heavily mangled, but was able to withdraw successfully. The remaining battalions are fighting near Donetsk-Debaltsevo, being the main junta spearhead.

These units are now actually “chopped liver”.

The bottom line, there’s only:

  • 28 Mechanised Brigade (6 Army Corps). Chernomorsk (Odessa Oblast): A fresh unit, but considered “reserve”. On paper, it’s combat-ready, but as Odessa locals make up most of the unit, their ideological reliability is in question (perhaps, that’s why the unit is in reserve and not on the line).
  • 92 Mechanised Brigade (6 Army Corps). Klugino-Bashkirovka (Kharkov Oblast): Deployed near Lugansk, but with one battalion in Kharkov Oblast. Its reliability is also in question, as Kharkov locals fill the ranks.
  • 93 Mechanised Brigade 6 (Army Corps). Cherkassy (Dnepropetrovsk Oblast): Suffered significant losses near Slavyansk and in the fighting on the Donetsk outskirts. Now, mans the line on the northern and western sides of Donetsk. Losses partially degraded this unit’s combat readiness.
  • 128 Separate Mountain Infantry Brigade (13 Army Corps). Mukačevo (Zakarpatskaya Oblast): Now, deployed near Lugansk.
  • 80 Separate Airmobile Brigade. Lvov (Lvov Oblast)/Chernovtsy (Chernovtsy Oblast): Operating near Lutugino Raion-Lugansk airport.

There’s a total of five relatively combat-ready units (the others are destroyed, decimated, or tied down in fighting) One of these is partly degraded. There are questions about the ideological reliability of two of these units. One is bogged down near the airport, leaving one unit to reinforce the offensive.

Of 12 infantry brigades:

  • 4 crushed and completely withdrawn from the combat zone
  • 3 suffered significant losses
  • 1 suffered moderate losses, with diminished offensive capabilities
  • 1 surrounded by opolchenie
  • 2 from ideologically unreliable regions

Well, one hears people say, “They hope to win in the Donbass!” Well, how will do they do it? What objective factors will give it to them? Is anyone surprised that they’re throwing “volunteers” into the fight? They’ve hastily deployed Territorial Defence battalions (some only have truck-borne transport). How will they defend the Moldavian front? Right Sector gangs? We’re not even talking about the Crimea. I’d like to know, is there anything other than border guards on that sector?

18 August 2014

Russkaya Vesna

http://rusvesna.su/recent_opinions/1408363677

Editor:

The Mechanised/Tank/Airborne brigades have a formal TO&E strength of 46,000 (@4,000 per Mechanised, 3,000 per Tank, 2,000 per Airborne Brigade). At the beginning of hostilities, there were about 60,000 personnel in the junta ground forces. That is, except for one or two units, all units were understrength, some seriously so. To bring the combat units up to strength and to have sufficient personnel for logistics support and combat support units would require about 95,000 to 100,000 troops. There was massive draft dodging in all three junta call-ups. They also raised politically reliable (but militarily worthless) “National Guard” and Territorial Defence units… therefore, the drafts of manpower didn’t go into formed professional formations, but into undisciplined, untrained, and badly equipped new units.

That isn’t all… the junta purged its officer ranks at least twice. The first purge came when they came into power. Secondly, when they shitcanned Admiral I I Tenyukh for stepping on the toes of junta pols (and for telling the truth in a blunt, direct, no-nonsense, profane way). This eroded confidence in the junta amongst the professional officer corps. Besides that, the junta appointed Galician Uniate hillbillies as political commissars, with the power to shoot “deserters” and “malingerers”. To put it bluntly, the junta forces have received no real reinforcements since the beginning of the war. Let’s not be coy… it takes at least 9-12 months to recruit, train, form, and gel a combat unit. That’s a bare minimum. The junta’s thrown nothing into battle but uniformed Euromaidantsy terrorists, nothing more.

In short, the junta’s fighting the one kind of war that it can’t win… a war of attrition in a land where the people hate them (and hate them worse with each airstrike and artillery bombardment). Besides this, there’s much discontent, which the junta toady press suppresses (the reporting of such, not the disorders). There are disturbances in the Lvovshchina, which doesn’t bode well for the junta. Remember, if 38 percent of the voters in the Lvovshchina voted for Svoboda, it means that 62 percent voted AGAINST them.

This all adds up to a complete bloody mess. No one’s in charge, certainly not P A Poroshenko! Stay tuned… I fear that this is going to grind through to a bloody and nasty conclusion. We have Langley to thank for that (what shall we do with the Orthodox who still support the neocons after this? It’s a real question… Potapov and Paffhausen deserve a Cossack horsewhipping, to be sure).

This isn’t the end… but it could be the “end of the beginning”…

BMD

Saturday, 16 August 2014

16 August 2014. APL “Walruses” Bathing in Polynya Near the North Pole

Filed under: mass media,military,personal reflections,politics,Russian,USA — 01varvara @ 00.00

01-navy-id-tag-from-the-kursk

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You’ve been hearing all sorts of rot from CNN, the New York Times, Fox News, and Radio Liberty. Well, here’ s the truth… Russians aren’t ogres… Russians aren’t ravening killers… they’re rather ordinary sorts with a streak of mischief, like all normal people. Don’t listen to those beating the war drums… they’re paid whores for the American Corporate Oligarchy… they beat the drums hard, for if they didn’t, they’d lose their jobs and they’d have to leave their homes in the “right” suburb and survive on salaries closer to the median.

Keep focused… mistrust ANYONE who writes for or is a “wheel” in the American media machine (that covers several well-known Orthodox figures, kids). They’re casual and sincere liars… if they’re liars in one sphere… you catch my drift…

BMD

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