Due to rapidly-breaking developments and in order to facilitate readers’ access to the latest dispatches, we are publishing this article as it is being written. please check back for updates and additions.
To see a list of previous articles, enter “Ukraine” in the Search Box on the upper right, on The Trenchant Observer web site, and you will see a list in chronological order.
Only force can stop Putin
See “Ukraine War, April 5, 2022 (II): Force must be used to stop Putin,” The Trenchant Observer, April 5, 2022.
1) Sophie Tanno, “Ukraine evening briefing: Five developments as Putin honours brigade accused of Bucha war crimes,” The Telegraph, April 18, 2022 (5:17pm);
2) “Putin verleiht Ehrentitel an Butscha-Brigade; Butscha ist zum Symbol für die russischen Gräueltaten im Krieg gegen die Ukraine geworden. Nun zeichnet Präsident Putin die mutmaßlichen Kriegsverbrecher aus,” Der Spiegel, den 18. April 2022 (19.09 Uhr);
3) Marie Jégo (Istanbul), “Guerre en Ukraine : pourquoi la Turquie est devenue l’arbitre du conflit en mer Noire; La fermeture du Bosphore, décidée par Ankara, empêche la Russie d’envoyer des renforts navals dans la zone,” Le Monde, le 18 avril 2022 (11h06, mis à jour à 16h59);
4) Anne Applebaum and Jeffrey Goldberg, “LIBERATION WITHOUT VICTORY; In a wide-ranging conversation at his compound in Kyiv, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky tells The Atlantic what Ukraine needs to survive—and describes the price it has paid,” The Atlantic, April 15, 2022.
Putin honors the Bucha war criminals
Tanno reports on Putin’s honoring on the unit that committed war crimes in Bucha. She writes,
(President Vladimir Putin) on Monday bestowed an honorary title on a brigade accused by Ukraine of Bucha war crimes.
A decree signed by Putin gave the 64th Motor Rifle Brigade the title of “Guards” for defending the “Motherland and state interests” and praised the “mass heroism and valour, tenacity and courage” of its members.
In early April, the Ukrainian defence ministry said the unit occupied the town outside the capital Kyiv and committed war crimes.
The majority of people killed in Bucha died from gunshot wounds, Ukrainian police said last week.
This report calls to mind a video seen on Twitter in which the Russian actors joked about getting ready to go out and commit war crimes.
We should all understand that Putin, many Russian soldiers, and a significant portion of the Russian population do not share our values, and are not shocked by the commission of atrocities that are reminiscent of Genghis Khan.
We should devote our public energies not to the expression of shock and dismay, though such sentiments are inevitable and understandable, but rather to pressuring our governments to take military action, including the limited use of force, to bring these atrocities to a halt.
Turkey blocks passage of Russian warships to Black Sea
Marie Jégo reports on the critical role played by Turkey in blocking Russian warships from passing through the straits in the Dardelles and the Bosphorus to the Black Sea.
This action has significantly reduced Russia’s naval capacity in the Black Sea, and has prevented it from replacing the Moskva, the flagship of the Black Sea Fleet, with one or both vessels of the same type from its North Sea and Pacific fleets.
She quotes a Ukrainian diplomat as saying Turkey’s action is responsible for saving, at least up until now, the Black Sea port of Odessa.
He also reports on the close relationship between Turkey and Ukraine, and how Turkey, while not participating in sanctions against Russia, is increasingly leaning toward Ukraine.
The Trenchant Observer