Is Putin Blaming Ukraine?

Putin Expands War Campaign in Ukraine

In a stark escalation in the conflict that is raging in Ukraine, Russian President Vladimir Putin has decided to mobilise more than 300,000 army Reservists in just a day after four of the Ukrainian regions declared illegal referendums for joining Russia.

Western experts and officials believe the announcement is a sign of his desperation growing and signals vulnerability as Ukrainian forces swiftly retake territories while the Russian military suffers massive losses. Between 70-80 percent of Russian soldiers have been killed or wounded during the conflict as per U.S. estimates.This “is one of the most significant/riskiest political decisions Putin has ever made,” Rob Lee, senior fellow in the Foreign Policy Research Institute, posted on Twitter and added the announcement is “an acknowledgment that Russia’s war was failing and a change had to be made.”

With less than 200 000 Russian troops that are believed to be present in Ukraine Putin’s plan is to bring in more than 300,000 individuals with military knowledge. According to Russian laws, they can be aged between 18 to 60. However, the decree is confined to detailsand is undefined and some experts think Putin deliberately left it unclear to allow for some flexibility in its implementation.

The low proportion of Russian Reservists who have combat experience–as well as the months-long training program described by Russian officials described –the Institute for the Study of War stated that the decision won’t affect the course of the war for a long time.

“This all adds up to a likely gradual call-up and deployment of limited numbers of reservists over the coming months that will not change the battlefield dynamics this year,” the article said on Twitter.

The troop increase is a result of his consistently denying plans to broaden his war campaign as The FP’s Amy Mackinnon, Jack Detsch as well as Robbie Gramer report. “It is likely to deal a serious–if not fatal–blow to Putin’s effort to pitch the war as a ‘special operation,'” they write, a frame that has helped shield Putin from criticism.

In Russia Putin’s announcement has already provoked a flood of anger and despair over 1,000 protesters being arrested since protests erupted. While others fled the country, tickets to fly quickly sold out or dramatically increased in cost.

In addition, adding more troops won’t do much to improve morale that is rapidly declining and indicates an army of mostly uninterested fighters, as well as more frustration at home.

“The war will now increasingly be fought on the Russian side by people who do not want to be there,” Lee tweeted. “The difference in morale, unit cohesion, and other critical factors between Ukrainian and Russian units will grow even greater.”

What’s happening today

Human rights violations in Venezuela. The latest U.N. investigation has revealed evidence that shows that the Venezuelan government was guilty of violations against humanity as part of its efforts to suppress protest and thwart protest. The report detailed numerous instances of sexual violence, torture and the arbitrary detention of prisoners.

“Our investigations and analysis show that the Venezuelan state relies on the intelligence services and its agents to repress dissent in the country,” said Marta Valinas, chair of the United Nations’ fact-finding mission. “In doing so, grave crimes and human rights violations are being committed, including acts of torture and sexual violence.”

Germany nationalizes Uniper. Germany has declared its giant gas company, Uniper, in a effort to increase the security of its energy supply as Russia’s grip on European energy causes a surge in prices and also pressures households and businesses. The company announced in August that Uniper declared that it faced $12.5 billion of losses.

“We at Uniper have de facto become a pawn in this conflict,” Uniper CEO Klaus-Dieter Maubach said in August.

Keep an eye out

The record of Egypt is a bit shaky. Egypt has adopted a new human rights policy to hide its brutal crackdown on critics as well as police repression, Amnesty International said in the 48-page report that was released on Wednesday.

“Egyptian authorities have created the National Human Rights Strategy as a shiny cover-up to their unrelenting violations of human rights, thinking they would fool the world ahead of COP27,” declared Amnesty International Secretary-General Agnes Callamard speaking of the U.N. conference on climate change (COP27) held in the month of November. “But the grim reality … cannot be rebranded in a PR stunt.”

U.S. bank pledges. If China is threatening Taiwan The chief officers of three major U.S. banks–J.P. Morgan Chase, Citigroup, and Bank of America — have pledged to pull out from China should China is ordered to do so by the U.S. government orders it according to The Financial Times reported.


Odds and Ends

From enduring a flood of 150,000 tomato to being covered in Alfredo sauce U.S. roadways have often been the site of unusual food spills. The most recent incident was when a semitrailer carrying Coors Light beer collided with another vehicle, inundating the Florida highway with crushed silver cans and cardboard cont

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