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Tag: ukraine war

Danziger Draws

Jeff Danziger lives in New York City. He is represented by CWS Syndicate and the Washington Post Writers Group. He is the recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons, a novel and a memoir. Visit him at DanzigerCartoons.

Danziger Draws

Jeff Danziger lives in New York City. He is represented by CWS Syndicate and the Washington Post Writers Group. He is the recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons, a novel and a memoir. Visit him at DanzigerCartoons.

Danziger Draws

Jeff Danziger lives in New York City. He is represented by CWS Syndicate and the Washington Post Writers Group. He is the recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons, a novel and a memoir. Visit him at DanzigerCartoons.

Endorse This! Colbert Returns To Roots Of Mocking George Bush (VIDEO)

Ever since the Republican party was hijacked by a clownish, failed businessman and reality tv host turned fascist dictator, many on the left have pined for the simpler days of George W. Bush. Putting aside his obvious failure of a lifetime in launching a brutal, unnecessary, and costly war in Iraq, the not-so-bright former president would probably be considered a leftist by today's deranged Republican party of rabble-rousing misfits. Stephen Colbert, like many of us comedians at the time, took great pleasure in jostling George Bush over his failures in Iraq.

Although he has since dropped his more arcane Colbert Report far-right character after taking over hosting duties at the Late Show, Colbert is as political as ever. Having been said, Colbert mocked George W Bush, who gave a speech in Dallas on Wednesday for an event called “Elections – A More Perfect Union”, which focused on how elections work.

We’ve actually acquired Dubya’s PowerPoint on how elections work,” the Late Show host deadpanned. “Step one: get fewer votes than your opponent. Step two: have the supreme court hand it to you." Colbert, however, really laid into the former President after his gaffe on Iraq.

Watch the segment below:

Ukraine To Hold First War Crimes Trial Of Russian Soldier ​​

Kyiv (Ukraine) (AFP) - Ukraine announced it will hold its first war crimes trial over the Russian invasion, as Moscow accused Kyiv of shelling a Russian city in the war's latest flashpoint.

The conflict has devastated cities and displaced millions, with fears also growing of its broader international impact as gas supplies to Europe were disrupted by a halt in Russian flows through Ukraine.

Kyiv has repeatedly accused Russian troops of committing atrocities since the invasion began on February 24, and Ukrainian authorities said Wednesday they would launch the first war crimes trial of the conflict.

The prosecutor general's office said Vadim Shishimarin, a 21-year-old Russian service member, is accused of killing an unarmed 62-year-old civilian as he fled with four other soldiers in a stolen car.

"The man died on the spot just a few dozen metres from his home," said a statement from prosecutor Iryna Venediktova's office.

Shishimarin faces possible life imprisonment if found guilty.

Venediktova's office has said it has received reports of more than 10,000 alleged war crimes, with 622 suspects identified.

The Russian invasion has sparked an exodus of nearly six million civilians, many of whom bear accounts of torture, sexual violence and indiscriminate destruction.

The UN Human Rights Council is due to hold a special session on Ukraine on Thursday.

Moscow has focused on eastern and southern Ukraine since it failed to take Kyiv in the first weeks of its campaign.

Ukraine's forces were boosted by what Kyiv described as the recapture of four villages around the northeastern city of Kharkiv, close to the border with Russia.

In the Russian city of Belgorod, around 43 miles from Kharkiv, authorities said one person was killed and six injured by Ukrainian shelling.

Belgorod governor Vyacheslav Gladkov said it was "the most difficult situation" facing the border region since Russia sent its troops into Ukraine 11 weeks ago.

Authorities in Russian regions bordering Ukraine have repeatedly accused Ukrainian forces of launching attacks.

In April, Gladkov said Ukrainian helicopters carried out a strike on a fuel storage facility in Belgorod.

'They Come In Waves'

In southern Ukraine, the pro-Kremlin authorities in the city of Kherson urged Putin to annex the region.

Kherson was the first major Ukrainian city to fall in the current conflict. It lies north of Crimea, which was annexed by Russia in 2014.

Kirill Stremousov, deputy head of Kherson's Moscow-installed administration, said there would be a "request to make Kherson region a full subject of the Russian Federation".

The Kremlin replied it was up to the residents of Kherson to "determine their own fate".

Ukrainian presidential aide Mykhaylo Podolyak said Kherson would be liberated and "the invaders may ask to join even Mars or Jupiter".

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has framed his nation's resistance to the Russian invasion as a "war against tyranny", but the fierce fightback has carried a heavy cost.

In a rare release of battle casualty figures, Ukraine's National Guard said Wednesday that 561 of its members have been killed and nearly 1,700 wounded since the invasion began.

Neither the defence ministry in Kyiv nor its counterpart in Moscow has provided official death counts, but in mid-April, Zelensky said between 2,500 and 3,000 Ukrainian soldiers had been killed.

Ukraine's effort to hold the Russian-speaking Donbas region in the east has also become increasingly desperate.

"They come in waves," volunteer fighter Mykola said of the repeated Russian attempts to push past a strategic river near a rural settlement called Bilogorivka.

NATO Decision By Finland, Sweden

Much of the world has moved to isolate Putin as punishment for the invasion.

Russia "is today the most direct threat to the world order with the barbaric war against Ukraine," European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said in Tokyo Thursday after meeting Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.

Kishida, whose government joined the tough measures against Moscow, added: "Russia's invasion of Ukraine is not just a matter for Europe, but it shakes the core of the international order including Asia. This must not be tolerated."

Russia has been hit with a wave of punishing economic sanctions that have started to take a toll on its foreign exchange reserves.

Zelensky said Wednesday that he had spoken with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz about boosting penalties on Moscow.

"Step by step we are doing everything to make the aggressor feel the biggest pain from the aggression," the Ukrainian leader said.

But ramping up the embargoes has not been straightforward, with concern among some nations in Europe that rely on Russian gas.

Kyiv said Wednesday that Russia had halted gas supplies through a key transit hub in the east.

The stoppage caused supplies to plunge by 25 percent in Germany, which is dependent on Russia for its energy and has rejected an immediate full embargo on Russian gas.

The invasion of Ukraine has also prompted Sweden and Finland to consider NATO membership.

Finland was due to reveal its position on joining the bloc on Thursday.

A Mother Mourns

A Ukrainian commander in Mariupol appealed directly to Elon Musk on Wednesday, asking the world's richest man to intervene on behalf of those trapped by Russian forces in the southern port city.

The war has devastated Mariupol, where Ukrainians have sustained a pocket of resistance at a steel factory.

Iryna Yegorchenko, 43, learned Wednesday that her soldier son Artem had died protecting the Azovstal plant.

"I suddenly felt relieved," she told AFP.

The 22-year-old was crushed during the collapse of a structure and "quickly went to God", said Yegorchenko, who lives in Kyiv.

"He decided to defend his homeland, his people... I have nothing to be ashamed of as a mother."

Pelosi: House Will Vote $40 Billion Ukraine Aid Package Tonight

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The House of Representatives will vote on a $40 billion military and humanitarian aid package for Ukraine on Tuesday night, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said.

The legislation is expected to pass the House and then the Senate within the coming days and go to the White House for President Joe Biden to sign into law, easing fears of an interruption in the supply of military assistance to Kyiv.

Biden asked Congress 10 days ago to approve an additional $33 billion in aid for Ukraine, but lawmakers decided to increase that total to $39.8 billion, adding additional military and humanitarian aid to Biden's request.

"This package, which builds on the robust support already secured by Congress, will be pivotal in helping Ukraine defend not only its nation but democracy for the world," Pelosi said in a letter to House members urging quick passage.

Both Biden's fellow Democrats, who narrowly control both the House and Senate, and Republicans, said they backed the Ukraine aid.

(Reporting by Patricia Zengerle and Doina Chiacu; editing by Chris Reese and Lisa Shumaker)

First Lady Jill Biden Makes Unannounced Visit To Ukraine

By Jeff Mason

(Reuters) -- First Lady Jill Biden made an unannounced trip to Ukraine on Sunday to show support for its people amid Russia's invasion, visiting a school that is serving as a temporary shelter and meeting Ukraine's first lady, Olena Zelenska.

"I thought it was important to show the Ukrainian people that this war has to stop and this war has been brutal and that the people of the United States stand with the people of Ukraine," Biden said, according to a report by a Washington Post reporter shared with other media organizations.

The school is serving as a shelter for 163 displaced Ukrainians, including 47 children, the report said.

Biden, who had been traveling in neighboring Slovakia, gave flowers to Zelenska, who was making her first public appearance since the Russian invasion began on February 24, according to a U.S. official. The two women hugged.

Zelenska said Biden was courageous for making the trip.

"We understand what it takes for the U.S. first lady to come here during a war when the military actions are taking place every day, where the air sirens are happening every day even today," she said through an interpreter, according to the report.

"We all feel your support and we all feel the leadership of the U.S. president, but we would like to note that the Mother's Day is a very symbolic day for us because we also feel your love and support during such an important day."

President Joe Biden has been leading efforts to impose economic sanctions on Russia and pressure President Vladimir Putin to end the war. The U.S. president has not been to Ukraine since the invasion, but other top U.S. officials have: Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Kiev in the last two weeks.

Jill Biden returned to Slovakia after her trip across the border.

(Reporting by Jeff Mason; editing by Lisa Shumaker and Daniel Wallis)

Pardoned Traitor Mike Flynn Urges West To Abandon Ukraine

Ex-National Security Adviser and retired Army Lieutenant General Michael Flynn said on Wednesday that the United States, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, and the European Union should cease supplying Ukraine with military aid to fend off invading Russian forces.

Flynn, whose deep ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin and the Kremlin ultimately sank his career, appeared on the right-wing propaganda show The Absolute Truth with Emerald Robinson and said that arming Ukraine accomplishes nothing except prolonging the conflict that Putin initiated just shy of two months ago.

"If you listen to Western media, it sounds like Ukraine is holding off Russia. But if you listen to not Western media, it sounds like Russia has the upper hand. So which is it?" Robinson asked Flynn.

"Yeah so first of all let me give you my judgment on sorta where we are right now. I think that anybody that continues to put, ya know, fuel on a blazing fire – meaning more weapons, more ammunition, more of the sorta warfare type stuff that's thrown into this fire – is going to keep this fire blazing for a long, long time," Flynn replied, adding that "I think that doesn't benefit anybody."

Watch below via Ron Filipkowski:

Context is critical: Flynn has been a Russian asset for a long time.

Recall that after former President Donald Trump won the 2016 election, outgoing President Barack Obama warned him not to include Flynn in his administration because of Flynn's entanglements with Russia. But Trump hired Flynn to be his national security adviser anyway. Flynn's historically brief stint in Trump's White House ended abruptly when he was fired for lying to then-Vice President Mike Pence about his relationships with Moscow during the 2016 presidential race.

In 2017, Flynn was subsequently charged with and pleaded guilty to lying to the Federal Bureau of Investigation about his secret communications with the Russians and undeclared lobbying work for Turkey when he was questioned in then-Special Counsel Robert Mueller's investigation into the Trump campaign's "synergy" with the Kremlin. Flynn eventually retracted his plea and changed his story, triggering a protracted legal battle.

In February of 2020, the Department of Justice recommended that Flynn serve six months in prison. Trump went on to pardon Flynn on November 25th, 2020 following his reelection loss to President Joe Biden three weeks earlier. That action granted Flynn an opportunity to join Trump's forthcoming efforts to overturn the results of the election, which culminated in the Capitol insurrection on January 6th, 2021.

Since then, Flynn has championed the rubbish put out by Putin and has openly called for armed rebellion against the federal government. He has also been an integral part of the right-wing's seditious efforts to dismantle American democracy.

Thus, Flynn is not urging peace. Rather, he is demanding that the West allow Russia to take over Ukraine unchallenged.

Twitter users noted that abandoning Ukraine would benefit someone – Putin.

And now a word from Flynn's sponsor:

Published with permission from Alternet.