Bob Homans May 23
Ukraine – 5/23 Sitrep
Compiled By: Robert Homans
Twitter - @rhomansjr
May 23, 2022
Ostap Stasiv is a member of a territorial defense mortar platoon operating near Kharkiv. Recently, territorial defense units like Ostap’s, consisting almost exclusively of volunteers, have played a critical role in driving the Russians back from the city of Kharkiv, putting most of Kharkiv out of range of Russian artillery. Other territorial defense units play similar roles in every theater of this war.
Ostap’s unit is working to acquire 3 pickup trucks, that would allow them to change locations faster, to avoid Russian counter-battery fire. The 3 trucks cost $17,000.00 total, of which they have contributed $2,000.00 for a non-refundable deposed used to secure the trucks. They are trying to raise an additional $15,000.00 needed to take delivery.
In order to contribute, go to PayPal and do a search for the following link – firstname.lastname@example.org. Kate (Kateryna) is Ostap’s wife. You can contribute openly or anonymously. Every contribution matters.
Open University of Maidan was started in December 2013, providing lectures on various subjects given on Independence Square to the Euromaidan Protestors. VUM Online continues to exist today, as an on-line university. Open University of Maidan’s web site lists over 80 offered courses. Many of the courses are on civic-related subjects. One example is how to choose an apartment building manager. It is an important subject in Ukraine because of the history of graft around the management of apartment buildings, especially older buildings that are still under the management of local district administrations, called the “Zheck System.” It is common under the Zheck System for money reserved for improvements be diverted to other uses, such as funding political campaigns. You can also find Ostap’s bio on https://vumonline.ua/about-project/
MEA CULPA - I admit that I am guilty of spreading information about St. Javelina, thinking it was the creation of a Ukrainian artist. I was wrong. Immediately after Yesterday’s post I ran into a story about a Canadian journalist who is responsible for designing St. Javelina. On the back of his design he has raised over a million dollars in assistance for Ukraine. This is the story I read.
Latvia Foreign Minister: “It is Russia that attacked Ukraine, it is Russia that must end the war. All talk of saving face and concessions for Putin is both immoral and irrational. Ukrainians are fighting a just war, it is the duty of the world to help them, not distract them.”
Levi Strauss & Co (Levi's) has decided to finally leave the Russian market after 29 years of operation. Being a San Franciscan, with Levi Strauss being an old San Francisco company going back to the Gold Rush, I am particularly pleased about this news.
CNN: British Prime Minister will "redouble efforts" to provide Ukraine with food and humanitarian aid, and it will work to ensure that Ukraine can export its goods.
White House national security adviser: The Russian Federation will not be able to disrupt the supply of weapons to Ukraine: "If circumstances arise in which the Russians can hit some party in Ukraine, this will not lead to a fundamental disruption of military assistance".
Ministry of Economy of Slovakia: The construction of the Slovak-Polish gas pipeline with a length of 164 kilometers, through which liquefied natural gas (LNG) can be transported from the Baltic coast of Poland to Slovakia, will be completed in the nearest future.
DW: Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees: The number of people forced to flee conflict, violence, human rights violations, and persecution has surpassed the staggering 100 million mark for the first time in history. Russia's war in Ukraine has made a significant contribution to this development.
● One hundred million is a stark number, sobering and disturbing in equal measure. This is a record that should never have been reached. This should be a wake-up call to resolve and prevent destructive conflicts, end persecution, and address the root causes that drive innocent people to flee.
EU diplomat: The European Union needs the European armed forces to ensure its own security: “The new environment demonstrates that the EU must take more responsibility for its own security. For this we need modern and compatible European armed forces.” According to the politician, the stocks of EU military equipment have been depleted due to assistance to Ukraine.
● The attack of the Russian Federation on Ukraine became a wake-up call for the whole of Europe in the field of security and defense, and made us look for ways to strengthen our own defense capability.
Spiegel: World Economic Forum Davos President - Called for a "Marshall Plan" to rebuild Ukraine. “Even without a peace deal, which is unlikely so far, we must start rebuilding, at least in areas under Ukrainian control. We are talking about infrastructure, electricity, schools, roads, and bridges. We need a Marshall Plan for Ukraine."
The way the term “Marshall Plan” is used today, it is in danger of losing its original meaning. It is easy to forget what the original Marshall Plan involved. The money in the original Marshall Plan, $13 billion, is around $168 billion in today’s Dollars. As measured as a percentage of the US GDP at the time, it is the equivalent of $800 billion in today’s Dollars. The money wasn’t the critical factor; it was what the recipient countries had to agree to that set the stage for Western Europe’s postwar recover. However, when the pundits speak about “a Marshall Plan for Ukraine,” it seems to be all about the money.
As a condition of receiving the money, original Marshall Plan recipients had to sign an agreement which, according to the American Institute of Economic Research, “each recipient had to sign a bilateral pact with the United States that stipulated that the countries had to pursue balanced budgets, restore internal financial consolidation, and stabilize their exchange rates “at realistic levels.” Government intervention was discouraged and the plan promoted European economic integration and thus prepared the European Payments Union of 1950 as precursor to the European Economic Community of 1957.” The National Bureau of Economic Research stated further, “We examine the economic effects of the Marshall Plan, and find that it was not large enough to have significantly accelerated recovery by financing investment, aiding the reconstruction of damaged infrastructure, or easing commodity bottlenecks. We argue, however, that the Marshall Plan did play a major role in setting the stage for post-World War II Western Europe's rapid growth.”
If a Marshall Plan is to be replicated for Ukraine, the saying “the Devil is in the Details is a gross understatement.” Ukraine will emerge from the war as a supremely confident country, one that defeated the 2nd largest army in the World, but with a seriously damaged economy. Ukraine will not be in the mood to be lectured to, about corruption to take one example, by countries that preferred not to get involved in the war or, worse, encouraged Ukraine to agree to a ceasefire or an “offramp.” At the same time, a set of conditions similar to those that recipient countries agreed to in order to obtain aid under the original Marshall Plan, will be critical for any new Marshall Plan for Ukraine to achieve what is intended.
It is also worth mentioning that funds coming from Russian assets that have attached, such as Russian Central Bank reserves that amount to approximately $300 billion, may well become property of Ukraine without any conditions.
Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the US House of Representatives: The United States is ready to supply weapons to Moldova, if necessary; negotiations are already underway.
The Wall Street Journal: The United States may send special forces to Kyiv to protect the American embassy in Kyiv.
ORF TV: Austria froze €254 million on 97 Russian oligarch accounts.
Yle: Negotiations on Finland's NATO membership could take weeks. The country's Foreign Ministry said that the problems with Turkey on joining the Alliance will be resolved, but not soon.
Kyiv Mayor at Davos: "If Switzerland is passive, they have blood on their hands."
Sky News: The President of Senegal (a country in western Africa) will visit Kyiv and Moscow in the coming weeks. He will come as head of the African Union. He wants peace and condemns the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Head of 'Roskosmos': The Russian Federation is preparing to put 'Sarmat' intercontinental ballistic missiles on combat duty. There would be about 50 such ICBMs and advised "talking more politely with Russia."
Polish Prime Minister: Norway should share the "giant" profits it received as a result of rising oil and gas prices. According to him, first of all, the Norwegians should give part of the money to Ukraine.
In the Estonian city of Tirva, a 5-meter sand sculpture was established, which depicts Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyi in the form of the New York Statue of Liberty. The construction of Zelenskyi's statue on the new central square took 72 tons of sand. The grand opening is scheduled for June 21st.
Bloomberg: Due to a shortage of spare parts, the Russian Aeroflot may start disassembling its own aircraft in three months.
The Guardian: YouTube has removed more than 70,000 videos and 9,000 channels that spread fake news about the war in Ukraine. In particular, videos in which the war in Ukraine was called a “liberation mission” were removed from video hosting.
French State Secretary for European Affairs: The process of Ukraine's accession to the EU may take 15-20 years. "We need to be honest... If we say that Ukraine will join the EU in 6 months, a year or 2 years, it will not be true", – he says and urges not to build baseless illusions.
Local Media Daghestan: Two Daghestani high school graduates were arrested, a boy and a girl, for shouting slogans during their graduation ceremony. Their slogans, " No to war! Freedom to Ukraine! Damn Putin!" First, they had an educational conversation, and then they were taken to the local police department.
Social Media: Road sign, on the Minsk highway, in Vilnius, Lithuania. Kyiv 779 km. Minsk 187 km (occupied by the Kremlin).
Demonstrations and events in support of Ukraine: Larnaca, Riga, Valencia, Montreal, Madrid, Prague, London, Oslo, Manchester, Amsterdam, Dresden, São Paulo, Berlin, Valencia and Krakow.
Spiegel: BND - German Intelligence - Investigative research by the service identified the presence of members from two Russian neo-nazi groups in some invading Russian Battalions. Specifically - The Russian Imperial League and Rusych. Both groups have been linked to the mercenary army Wagner.
Institute for the Study of War:
● Russian troops recaptured from the AFU part of the positions north of Kharkiv - including the recently liberated village of Rubizhne near the border with Russia.
● To prevent Ukrainian forces from entering the border, the Russians have added units of the 6th All-Army and the Baltic Fleet of the Russian Federation.
● The western bank of the Seversky Donets is also being strengthened to prevent the advance of the AFU.
The International Committee of the Red Cross will not publish the names and data of the defenders of the Mariupol Azovstal. This information is confidential. “Our priority is to verify the conditions of detention and treatment of prisoners of war, prevent disappearances and maintain their connection with their families. But we will not publish lists or names of people we have visited or those we will visit in the future."
State Security Service: During interrogation former deputy Medvedchuk spoke about the role of Petro Poroshenko in the case of the theft of an oil product pipeline and trade with Russians in energy resources during the war. Medvedchuk said that it was Poroshenko who asked him to contact the leadership of the Russian Federation and ensured the adoption of the necessary decisions in all Ukrainian instances.
Petro Poroshenko's lawyer Golovan' said that Medvedchuk's testimony about the involvement of the fifth president in the withdrawal of the oil pipeline from state ownership and the purchase of coal from ORDLO (certain areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions) is not true.
Head of the Government of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria arrived in Kyiv. He assured cooperation with Ukraine in the joint fight against Russia. In Kyiv, he met with Chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people and Verkhovna Rada deputy Mustafa Dzhemilev.
Office of the Prosecutor General of Ukraine: In March, Russian troops used 350 residents of the village of Yahodne in the Chernihiv region as human shields. They kept people in the basement of the school, where they set up their own headquarters. People were kept in a room with an area of 197 square meters. In particular, there were elderly people, 77 children, including 5 babies.
President's Office of Ukraine: Ukraine itself would free Black Sea shipping routes if it received the American long range MLRS multiple launch rocket system.
● Ukraine excludes agreeing to a ceasefire with the Russian Federation and will not agree to any agreement with Moscow that provides for the recognition of the seizure of Ukrainian territory.
The General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine: In the Donetsk direction, the enemy is trying to break through the defense of the Ukrainian troops and reach the administrative borders of the Luhansk region.
● In the Severodonetsk direction, the troops of the Russian Federation were fighting in the area of the settlement of Prudivka. The units also tried to launch an offensive to capture the village of Oleksandrivka, but failed.
● In the Bakhmut direction, with the support of artillery, the Russians tried to improve the tactical position of their units. They fought in the area of the settlements of Toshkivka, Kamyshevakha, Trypillia and Vasiliivka.
● In the Bessarabian direction, on the territory of the unrecognized Transnistrian region of Moldova, the situation remains tense. The personnel of the units of the operational group of Russian troops continues to be in a high degree of combat readiness.
● The Russian army is restoring the railway near Kupiansk, the Kharkiv region, in order to quickly transfer troops
● Based on the results of losses, Russian troops are forced to remove T-62 tanks from storage to complete reserve battalion tactical groups that are being formed to be sent to Ukraine
● Over the past day, 11 Russian attacks were repulsed in the Donetsk and Luhansk directions, 6 tanks, 10 units of military armored vehicles and 6 units of motor vehicles of the Russian Federation were destroyed.
Ministry of Internal Affairs: More than 6 million Ukrainians were forced to go abroad because of the war - about 5 million of them moved to the EU countries. The largest number of people - more than 3 million - moved to Poland.
● Ukrainian defenders again blew up the crossing over the Siversky Donets. Dozens of Russian soldiers were killed, several pieces of equipment were destroyed.
Verkhovna Rada (Ukrainian Parliament - ed.) adopted a bill banning import and sale of Russian and Belarusian medicines in Ukraine.
● Banned the symbols of the Russian troops, pro-Russian organizations or parties in Ukraine. At the same time, Russian symbols can be used in museums, educational materials, and scientific research.
● Russia was recognized as a terrorist state that commits genocide against the Ukrainian people and violates the laws of war.
Ukraine withdrew from the Agreement on perpetuating the memory of the courage and heroism of the peoples of the Soviet Union in the Second World War.
The National Guard of Ukraine confirmed that it calculated the location and destroyed the Russian self-propelled mortar "Tulip" thanks to a story in the Russian media.
Verkhovna Rada (Ukraine’s Parliament), voted to extend the martial law and mobilization in Ukraine for 90 days - until August 23.
Yesterday the first foreign leader to address Ukraine’s parliament from the start of the war, Polish President Duda, received multiple standing ovations.
● Joked about the situation with "Eurovision-2022 "during his address to the Verkhovna Rada: " No one can break our unity. Neither hostile politicians, nor foreign agents, nor the jury at Eurovision ". (The Polish jury cast all its votes for the Ukrainian band while the Ukrainian jury only partially supported the Polish band)
● "After Bucha, Borodianka, Mariupol, there can be no business with Russia, as usual, gentlemen presidents and prime ministers!"
● "The Polish people thank you for your resistance, for your courage and your defense of the Fatherland."
● Polish President promised to do everything possible to make Ukraine a member of the European Union.
● Polish President: The Russian Federation should pay for all the destruction of cities and villages in Ukraine committed by the Russian army.
● The Ukrainian President announced a bilateral agreement with Poland that should simplify border crossing between countries.
● The Ukrainian President introduced a bill in Parliament granting Polish citizens a special legal status.
● The Ukrainian President: "Without a free Ukraine there can be no free Poland."
● The Ukrainian President awarded the Polish city of Rzeszow the honorary title of "Savior City" for its role in accepting Ukrainian refugees.
The map of Russian invasion in Ukraine according to British intelligence on May 22.
Mayor of Izium: About 15,000 people are near death in Russian-occupied Izium. "The situation is very difficult. For almost three months there has been no electricity, gas, water, no communication. There are very big problems with food. We cannot bring humanitarian goods there, because the Russians do not let them through."
State Emergency Service in the Kharkiv region: Since the beginning of Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine, rescuers have cleared rubble at 98 sites in Kharkiv. The bodies of 150 dead Kharkiv residents were found under the rubble and more than 250 people were rescued.
Regional Military Administration: Ukrainian Red Cross opened a special medical center in Lysychansk.
● Russian troops are using the scorched earth tactics in Severodonetsk, trying to break through the defense line. “Everything is being shelled, they are shooting with Grads, mortars, tanks just go out and destroy houses - ammunition is everywhere. If the Russians can take Severodonetsk, this will not be the end, they will go further. After the Lugansk region, they will go to Donetsk.
● According to him, the Russian army will stop where the Armed Forces of Ukraine stop them. In battle, the Russians cannot overpower the Ukrainian army, therefore, contrary to the rules of war, they destroy cities and kill civilians.
● In the intensive care unit of the Dnieper, 11 girls died, who came under fire two weeks ago in Luhansk region.
● A woman died in Lisichansk. 28 houses were destroyed by Russians in Novodruzhesk, more than 70 in the region.
Regional Military Administration: During May 22, Russian troops killed 5 civilians of Donbas: 2 in Liman, 1 in Dachny, 1 in Klinovoe and 1 in Avdiivka. Another 11 people were injured.
Ombudsman of Ukraine: In Mariupol, the Russians are planning to completely “Russify” education in schools from the beginning of the school year. According to her, only three subjects will be taught under the new program: Russian language and literature, history of the Russian Federation and mathematics.
● The Russians have replaced "Kievan Rus" with "Rus" in history textbooks for children in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine.
Adviser to Mayor of Mariupol: The Russian military organized a "volunteer rally" with red flags in Mariupol, which ended with an excursion inside the Drama Theater, which they destroyed.
● In Mariupol, the Russians do not give up trying to supply water. No water in the taps, but rivers of water on the streets from damaged water mains spreading an epidemiological threat.
● Yesterday, the Russians deported 245 people to the Russian Federation. 175 people, including 17 children, were taken out of the filtration camp in the village of Bezimenne, and another 70 people (12 children) were deported from the village of Mykolske. In addition, another 313 people, including 55 children, were taken from Mariupol to Bezymianny for “filtration”. (Filtration divides people into those who have right thoughts and feelings for Russia, those who are not against Russia, and those who are in favor of Ukraine).
● Russian troops have begun an attempt to export metal-roll and grain residues from the territory of the Mariupol port by rail. The Russians “started repairing the railway track in Mariupol and Sartana station. They also report a simultaneous attempt to restore the railway tracks in the Volnovakha region.
Regional Military Administration: The village of Novoyakivlivka was shelled yeserday. As a result of the armed attack, dozens of private houses of local residents and the "Kalinka" pre-school educational institution were significantly damaged.
● The number of Russian military is increasing, in particular, in the city of Vasilyivka there are already more of them than local residents. At the same time, Russian soldiers continue to rob civilians.
Elected Mayor of Enerhodar: The self-proclaimed "mayor" of Enerhodar, wounded yesterday by partisans, will be replaced by his "deputy" Ruslan Kirpichov from the Donetsk region. Kirpichov had previous convictions for tax evasion in Ukraine. In 2008-2009, he held senior positions in a state-owned enterprise. There, together with an accomplice, he committed financial fraud, during which he embezzled more than UAH 60 million (nearly $2 million).
Regional Military Administration: Russian troops fired on the Dnipropetrovsk region from "Hurricanes" - ballistic missiles.
● The enemy hit the Apostol community twice. He fell between the villages. People were not hurt.
● They also fired again in the Kriviy Rih region.
A Russian missile arrived in the Pavlohrad district; it hit the Samara River.
On May 22, Russian troops fired at three settlements near Kryvyi Rih.
Regional Military Administration: Three people died as a result of yesterday's shelling by Russian troops of Belozirsk.
Mayor of Kherson: The most common categories of people that have started disappearing after Russian occupation are: those who served in the ATO (antiterrorist operation), the Armed Forces of Ukraine, people with an active pro-Ukrainian position, and correspondents disappear. There were about 250 missing people in the region, while 70 of them have already been released. The mayor suggested that the missing people could be tortured. The population of Kherson since the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine has decreased from 300 thousand to 170-180 thousand. However, there were no safe ways to leave the city
The mayor of Mykolaiv confirmed that the Russians are shelling the city with cluster shells.
Regional Military Administration: In the unrecognized 'Transnistria', the Russian contingent was given the task of restoring a military airfield and equipment in Tiraspol. It turned out that there was nothing to restore there because of the corruption of local chiefs.
REST OF UKRAINE
Sumy Regional Military Administration: All night the enemy shelled the peaceful city of Bilepole and its environs. From their territory, the Russians fired rockets, fired from self-propelled guns and there was an air strike at about one in the morning. As a result, private houses of civilian residents of the city were damaged, at least At least 11 houses were seriously damaged and there were no casualties.
Social Media: In the city of Stryi, Lviv region, a Moscow's Orthodox Church of Ukraine priest was doused with green paint.
Kyiv Mayor: Kyiv transferred humanitarian aid to the Chernobyl zone, where they are struggling with the consequences of the temporary occupation by the Russian army. "18 tons of food, water and two electric generators have already been delivered and handed over to the personnel of enterprises and institutions of the exclusion zone," he specified.
Operational Command Pivnich (North) Russians continue to fire at the border areas of the Chernihiv region, yesterday six "arrivals" were recorded in the Senkivka area. There were no casualties among personnel and equipment.
'Suspilne' - Mayor of Malyn: Zhytomyr region, there were explosions again today (May 22) in the city. As a result of a Russian missile strike on Malyn, Zhytomyr region, at least one person died.
Suspilne: An explosion was heard in Korosten in the Zhytomyr region during the last air alert.
Comparing Soviet invasion of Afghanistan to Russian invasion of Ukraine using Wikipedia and Ukraine Ministry of Defense Daily Bulletins. Soviet and Russian military losses not including captured equipment.