Dedicated Russian thread

Shots fired, either one or three (awaiting confirmation) personnel killed near the FSB HQ in Moscow. Apparently RT et al are calling it 'an act of terrorism' albeit as below, nothing in the article I've seen:
At least one person has died after a person opened fire near the headquarters of Russia's spy agency.

Early reports recorded a higher number of fatalities, citing three people dead, as well as uncertainty over whether the shooting happened in or near the building.

The agency, the Federal Security Service but better known as the FSB and formerly known as the KGB, have said through Russian press that the shooter has been "neutralised" and that there a number of people wounded.

A Russian TV channel, RT TV, have said the Russian intelligence services have said the incident is "an act of terrorism".
Three people were killed in a shooting in central Moscow on Thursday evening near the headquarters of Russia’s FSB security service headquarters, the Izvestia newspaper reported, citing a source.

Earlier on Thursday, a witness told Reuters she had heard gun shots fired in the same area and a video shared on social media showed several people resembling police officers holding assault rifles running down a nearby street.
Gunfire has broken out near central Moscow's Lubyanka Square in the immediate vicinity of the Federal Security Service building. The authorities said the gunman was neutralized and two FSB officers wounded.

The shooting occurred around 6 p.m local time right at the heart of Russia’s capital on a street leading to the square and the iconic FSB building and some 10 minutes on foot from the Kremlin.
 
Excellent opinion piece summarising the pitfalls of German appeasement towards Russia.
The question is: Why is Germany doing this? Surely they can see the parallels with British appeasement of Germany in the nineteen-thirties?
 
Excellent opinion piece summarising the pitfalls of German appeasement towards Russia.
The question is: Why is Germany doing this? Surely they can see the parallels with British appeasement of Germany in the nineteen-thirties?
Energy supply in winter.
 
Has Germany become over-reliant on Russian gas? Someone has been very short-sighted and negligent.
Has CNI been compromised by the use of a potentially hostile power to supply essential services on the cheap?
 
Has Germany become over-reliant on Russian gas? Someone has been very short-sighted and negligent.
As of 2017, 27.5% of GazProm’s exports. On or around 35-40% of Germany’s gas imports with Norway and Holland making up the rest.

They’re for obvious reasons against the recent sanctions on Nord Stream 2 by the US:Germany and Russia condemn US pipeline sanctions
-which brings gas directly from Russia under the Baltic Sea to Germany.

US gas is more expensive as it is liquified and obviously shipped. Ukraine is against Nord Stream 2 as they will lose much of the volume of gas pumped to Europe as they get trans shipment costs.

Germany needs the gas whilst they ‘diversify’ their energy needs.
 
Has Germany become over-reliant on Russian gas? Someone has been very short-sighted and negligent.
Major natural gas reserves are even more geographically concentrated than oil reserves. The three biggest reserves of natural gas are in Russia, Iran, and Qatar, in that order. Those three between them have over half the world's gas.
Let's see, the Germans could buy gas from Iran instead. Except of course the Americans won't let them.

They could buy gas from Qatar, except Qatar is under invasion threat from Saudi Arabia as well as being sandwiched in between Saudi Arabia and Iran, which are poised to blow each other up and everything in between. They also suffer from the fact that all their exports have to either go as expensive LNG via sea through insecure routes, or potentially through a war zone in Syria and Iraq (with gas pipeline politics playing a part in the outside meddling in Syria's civil war). So that doesn't look like a good option either, except as a secondary source.

They could buy gas from Turkmenistan, who are well up the list as well. Except access routes go through Russia or Iran.

Everyone else either has limited amounts of spare capacity to export, or they are in a poor position geographically to supply Germany.

They could try to buy up small quantities from here and there around the world, which they are doing, but that's expensive and supplies are limited and not guaranteed.

So they're back to Russia, who have a large percentage of the world's total gas reserves, and can supply Germany by pipeline. If the new gas pipeline under the Baltic gets completed than those supplies will go through reasonably stable regions, making them even more secure.

If you want to propose alternatives, let's hear them. Keep in mind that you have to propose sources that:
  • Have large proven reserves. We are talking about large as in significant on a global scale, so use the above list to quote their reserves as a percentage of the total global resource.
  • Those reserves must be exportable, so it's no use counting a source which is already largely spoken for use in domestic consumption.
  • The sources must be a favourable geographic position in terms of actually getting the gas to Germany.
  • The sources must be in a stable region with respect to politics and regional conflict.

We're waiting to here your proposals.
 
Major natural gas reserves are even more geographically concentrated than oil reserves. The three biggest reserves of natural gas are in Russia, Iran, and Qatar, in that order. Those three between them have over half the world's gas.
Let's see, the Germans could buy gas from Iran instead. Except of course the Americans won't let them.

They could buy gas from Qatar, except Qatar is under invasion threat from Saudi Arabia as well as being sandwiched in between Saudi Arabia and Iran, which are poised to blow each other up and everything in between. They also suffer from the fact that all their exports have to either go as expensive LNG via sea through insecure routes, or potentially through a war zone in Syria and Iraq (with gas pipeline politics playing a part in the outside meddling in Syria's civil war). So that doesn't look like a good option either, except as a secondary source.

They could buy gas from Turkmenistan, who are well up the list as well. Except access routes go through Russia or Iran.

Everyone else either has limited amounts of spare capacity to export, or they are in a poor position geographically to supply Germany.

They could try to buy up small quantities from here and there around the world, which they are doing, but that's expensive and supplies are limited and not guaranteed.

So they're back to Russia, who have a large percentage of the world's total gas reserves, and can supply Germany by pipeline. If the new gas pipeline under the Baltic gets completed than those supplies will go through reasonably stable regions, making them even more secure.

If you want to propose alternatives, let's hear them. Keep in mind that you have to propose sources that:
  • Have large proven reserves. We are talking about large as in significant on a global scale, so use the above list to quote their reserves as a percentage of the total global resource.
  • Those reserves must be exportable, so it's no use counting a source which is already largely spoken for use in domestic consumption.
  • The sources must be a favourable geographic position in terms of actually getting the gas to Germany.
  • The sources must be in a stable region with respect to politics and regional conflict.
We're waiting to here your proposals.
Exactly. Lets make ourselves overly reliant on a fuel source which is supplied by an expansionist and hostile country whose foreign policy is often diametrically opposed to our own. Hmmmm.

It's a bit late in the day for alternative proposals as Germany is almost check-mated in this regard by long-term Soviet/Russian geopolitical moves. Who was behind the Greens and "Atomkraft - nein danke" in the Cold War?
 
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Exactly. Lets make ourselves overly reliant on a fuel source which is supplied by an expansionist and hostile country whose foreign policy is often dia metrically opposed to our own. Hmmmm.

It's a bit late in the day for alternative proposals as Germany is almost check-mated in this regard by long-term Soviet/Russian geopolitical moves. Who was behind the Greens and "Atomkraft - nein danke" in the Cold War?
It was the Fukushima melt-down in 2011 which caused Merkel to decide to phase out nuclear power in Germany by 2022.

Nuclear power is struggling to compete on economic grounds everywhere though, including in places such as the US.

So it goes back to, where other than Russia is Germany going to get gas from, taking into account that US policy in the Middle East prevents Germany from relying on the major viable alternatives?
 
Irrespective of the arguments for and against this pipeline, it does seem to me extraordinary that the United States is imposing sanctions on construction companies involved in it, and that these sanctions against legal decisions by an allied sovereign country don't bother people who profess so much concern about limitations to sovereignty in another context.
 

Slime

LE
Major natural gas reserves are even more geographically concentrated than oil reserves. The three biggest reserves of natural gas are in Russia, Iran, and Qatar, in that order. Those three between them have over half the world's gas.
Let's see, the Germans could buy gas from Iran instead. Except of course the Americans won't let them.

They could buy gas from Qatar, except Qatar is under invasion threat from Saudi Arabia as well as being sandwiched in between Saudi Arabia and Iran, which are poised to blow each other up and everything in between. They also suffer from the fact that all their exports have to either go as expensive LNG via sea through insecure routes, or potentially through a war zone in Syria and Iraq (with gas pipeline politics playing a part in the outside meddling in Syria's civil war). So that doesn't look like a good option either, except as a secondary source.

They could buy gas from Turkmenistan, who are well up the list as well. Except access routes go through Russia or Iran.

Everyone else either has limited amounts of spare capacity to export, or they are in a poor position geographically to supply Germany.

They could try to buy up small quantities from here and there around the world, which they are doing, but that's expensive and supplies are limited and not guaranteed.

So they're back to Russia, who have a large percentage of the world's total gas reserves, and can supply Germany by pipeline. If the new gas pipeline under the Baltic gets completed than those supplies will go through reasonably stable regions, making them even more secure.

If you want to propose alternatives, let's hear them. Keep in mind that you have to propose sources that:
  • Have large proven reserves. We are talking about large as in significant on a global scale, so use the above list to quote their reserves as a percentage of the total global resource.
  • Those reserves must be exportable, so it's no use counting a source which is already largely spoken for use in domestic consumption.
  • The sources must be a favourable geographic position in terms of actually getting the gas to Germany.
  • The sources must be in a stable region with respect to politics and regional conflict.

We're waiting to here your proposals.
Proposals don’t have to contain the points you describe.
The long term the solution will be to reduce the need for gas, or substitute its use as a power source wherever possible with an alternative fuel source.

Just as the U.K. will start to reduce its use of gas so can Germany.
 
2. Putin continues to apply pressure on political opposition by any means necessary.
View attachment 439617
Russian police raid opposition leader Alexei Navalny's office | DW | 26.12.2019
Looks like one of Navalny’s aids has been sent to the Arctic. It’s disputed whether he’d avoided the draft (1 year for 18-26 yr olds), but whatever the case he’s been sent to a base without any basic training. According to reports he is not allowed a mobile phone and is accompanied by another soldier at all times.

Monday the flat is raided. Tuesday evening he turns up in Novaya Zemlya where an AD unit is stationed. He was apparently applying for a medical deferment:
Ruslan Shaveddinov, a project manager at Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation, was detained at his Moscow flat on Monday after the door was broken down, the electricity cut, and the SIM card on his mobile phone remotely disabled.

On Tuesday evening, Shaveddinov resurfaced at a remote military base on Novaya Zemlya, a freezing archipelago in the Arctic Ocean some 2,000 km (1240 miles) north of Moscow and the location of a missile air defense unit.
Head of the Union of Soldiers Mothers Cttees says it is illegal:
Valentina Melnikova, head of the Union of Soldiers’ Mothers’ Committees, told Reuters she had serious doubts about the way Shaveddinov had been treated.

“This is definitely illegal,” she said.
Russian govt sources including Peskov say the conscription is legal, especially if he has been trying to dodge the draft:
“If he evaded conscription, he broke the relevant law of the Russian Federation,” said Peskov. “If he dodged conscription and was conscripted in this way then everything was done strictly in accordance with the law.”
Sending an untrained conscript to a AD unit up in the Arctic, without basic, let alone ‘special to arms’ training seems somewhat suspect.
 
Looks like one of Navalny’s aids has been sent to the Arctic. It’s disputed whether he’d avoided the draft (1 year for 18-26 yr olds), but whatever the case he’s been sent to a base without any basic training. According to reports he is not allowed a mobile phone and is accompanied by another soldier at all times.

Monday the flat is raided. Tuesday evening he turns up in Novaya Zemlya where an AD unit is stationed. He was apparently applying for a medical deferment:


Head of the Union of Soldiers Mothers Cttees says it is illegal:


Russian govt sources including Peskov say the conscription is legal, especially if he has been trying to dodge the draft:


Sending an untrained conscript to a AD unit up in the Arctic, without basic, let alone ‘special to arms’ training seems somewhat suspect.
Someone in Moscow has a very dark and sinister sense of humour...
 
Someone in Moscow has a very dark and sinister sense of humour...
It’d be a proper ‘EM moment’ if he was at the controls and something happened eg a ‘red on red’
 
It may be that the UK is having an effect on Russian info ops. We’ve apparently refused a visa to a Russian journalist and asked another to leave. Whether they are in fact ‘journalists’ is unknown:
Russia will take retaliatory measures against British media operating on Russian territory over what it regards as unfriendly action taken by British authorities against its own journalists, Russian news agencies reported on Thursday.

The TASS and RIA news agencies cited what they said was a senior but unnamed source in Moscow who said Russia would respond in kind “in the near future” to what the source said were decisions by the British authorities not to issue a visa to one Russian reporter and to force another to leave London.
Notably, Estonia is mentioned and of course that’s where the U.K. eFP is based:
The same source accused Britain of helping orchestrate problems experienced by Russian media in Estonia.
 
.............. Sending an untrained conscript to a AD unit up in the Arctic, without basic, let alone ‘special to arms’ training seems somewhat suspect.
Someone in Moscow has a very dark and sinister sense of humour...
It’d be a proper ‘EM moment’ if he was at the controls and something happened eg a ‘red on red’
He's likely to be put in a sangar on a mountain top with a pair of binoculars to scan for incoming enemy aircraft.
 
He's likely to be put in a sangar on a mountain top with a pair of binoculars to scan for incoming enemy aircraft.
I doubt he’d get anything as ‘interesting’ as that personally. He’s under 24 supervision it seems. I reckon he’ll not be doing much more than peeling potatoes and other root vegetables during his ‘service’. However, if he was given something important to do and mucked it up, I’d laugh :)
 

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