Thursday, June 20, 2024

Interlude: Racey - Lay Your Love On Me

Friday, June 14, 2024

Russia: Putin lays down terms for a ceasefire.

(Moscow)  So Vladimir Putin speaking to diplomats at the Russian foreign ministry, issued his demands to Kyiv in order to halt his invasion of the Ukraine. they were:

  • That Ukrainian troops leave the entire regions of Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia and that they be declared Russian territory by international agreement,
  • Drop its NATO bid in order for him to end his war in Ukraine.

He also issued a demand to the West which was:

  • drop all financial sanctions against Russia as a precondition to a ceasefire
To be fair, nothing has really changed as Moscow has laid claim to the 4 oblasts since the 30th of September 2022, however and a big however weeks after that proclamation Moscow suffered huge reversals in Kharkiv and Kherson Oblasts  meaning that currently Moscow doesnt fully control any of the Oblasts it covets. 
So here is what Moscow currently occupies inside the Ukraine:

What its demands are:

We saw something similar in 2014 when Moscow annexed the Crimea, which the world was told was all Russia wanted and in Feb 2022 we saw different. Who's to say that if Kyiv accepts this so called peace deal, that in say 8 years time after Russia has made good its losses, it decides its wants more. I mean isn't that how Russia has operated for over 200 years

Thursday, June 13, 2024

Interlude: The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo : Black Bear

Germany: To bring back a limited form of conscription

(Berlin) Coming on the back of Moscow's invasion of the Ukraine and the viewpoint of Putin that he wishes to bring back into the fold the former parts of the Russian empire which went their own way. (Finland, Sweden, Poland and of course Ukraine) the spectre of the Russia bear again worries the leaders of Europe. Military experts taking note of Moscow's huge hikes in the funding of its military have arrived at the conclusion that Moscow will be powerful enough to march into Europe proper by 2029. (Yes I know Moscow hasn’t achieved much in 2 years inside the Ukraine other than return vast tracts of the country to the stone age, but I’m only regurgitating what is been parroted in the European corridors of power).

This threat has resulted in Finland and Sweden give up neutrality and join NATO . Poland which has a long history regards Russia has remilitarised which when completed will make Warsaw the most powerful nation (militarily) in Europe with its ground forces outnumbering Germany, France, Uk , Holland and Italy combined. In fact all the European nations have taken to increasing military spending (Bar the Uk, which whilst acknowledging the threat facing Europe continues cutting defence spending with a promise they will increase defence spending in 2030) Germany which until the other year held the title of defence spending laggard has turned that around with a record amount of funding poured into its military and the otherday declared that it intends to bring back a limited form of conscription in which to build up a reserve in case it is needed post 2030.

The government has plans to increase the size of the army from 182,000 to 203,000 by 2031. But military officials believe it needs as many as 460,000 soldiers to defend Germany in the event of an attack. Under the plan, men aged 18 will be required to fill out a form with information about their willingness and ability to serve in the army and then, if selected, to undergo a medical examination. Recruits will then be chosen from those tested.

Of the 400,000 18-year-olds who would be approached by the Bundeswehr under this plan every year, it is estimated about a quarter would likely express an interest in serving. Of these, 40,000 to 50,000 would be invited to undergo a medical examination.  Those who pass the medical will be offered six months of basic training which can be extended to a total of 23 months of service. Recruits will then become part of the reserve force, with an obligation to undergo annual training. However the Bundeswehr currently only had the capacity to train 5,000 additional recruits a year, though that number would rise in the coming years.

Meanwhislt the upcoming general election in the Uk (4th July 2024) sees the SNP, Greens, Plaid Cymru (and a sizable element of Labour and the Liberals) stating that if elected they will get rid of the Uks nuclear deterrent in which to be the adult in the room in which to force others to get rid of their nukes and thus make the world a safer place. Yup good luck with that. (looks at how Ukraine got rid of her Nukes in 1994) seeing as how Moscow has threatened Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Romania, Poland and Holland with nuclear strikes if they don't do as told.

Wednesday, June 12, 2024

Russia: Adding Cope cages to Motorbikes

(Russia) So a few weeks ago I knocked out a post about how Moscow has started utilizing motorbikes  in which to allow its troops to advance quickly into Ukrainian territory in which to try and offset the vulnerability of slower armoured vehicles on the battlefield especially to First Person View UAVs, which have taken a terrible toll on Russian armour inside the Ukraine. Well as i mentioned at the time, Motorbikes whilst quicker than armoured vehicles (And a lot smaller) are a lot more vulnerable and taking note, the Russians have started fitting their Motor bikes with cope cages, fine if the device doesnt  detonate , but if it does, then the rider (lacking the protection afforded by armoured vehicles) is history and that assessment doesnt include artillery bursts . 

Germany: Latest iteration of Leopard 2 tank reveals unmanned turret

(Amsterdam) KNDS is a European defence industry holding company, which is the result of a merger in 2015 between German Krauss-Maffei Wegmann and French Nexter Systems. Which is headquartered in Amsterdam, Netherlands. One of its first projects was to develop a new Main Battle Tank (MainGround Combat System) which would replace the leopard 2 tank in German and the Le Clerc in French Service. Well KND has just revealed its latest iteration of the Leopard 2 tank which has moved on from its last concept of fitting the Leclerc turret onto the Leopard 2 chassis, by ditching that idea and replacing the manned turret  for a unmanned one  and relocating the 3 man crew into the hull .

The Leopard 2 A-RC is designed to address the evolving challenges of modern battlefields, incorporating cutting-edge innovations to enhance its operational capabilities.

A major highlight of the new turret, is the ability to fit the current 120mm gun, Rheinmetall’s new 130mm gun, or KNDS’s proprietary 140mm Ascalon transformer gun. The turret comes fitted with an autoloader capable of firing three rounds in ten seconds and is configurable for both direct line-of-sight and non-line-of-sight (NLOS) engagements.

The sensor suite includes optronics and multiple detection systems such as laser warning, optics detection, and drone detection, ensuring heightened situational awareness and battlefield effectiveness.

The unmanned turret reduces the tank’s vulnerable area by 30%. The Leopard 2 A-RC modular armour configuration system allows for quick replacement and upgrades and is backed up by a active protection systems (APS) capable of intercepting incoming projectiles.

The Leopard 2 A-RC will weigh less than 60 tons and have a reduced height compared to its predecessors.

Sunday, June 9, 2024

Russia: Ukraine takes out Russian stealth fighter

(Akhtubinsk) Ukraine carried out a long distance drone strike on a major Russian Air base 589 km from the Ukrainian border 

where Russia’s latest Su-57 fighter jets are based. 

They are part of the 929th State Flight Test Centre of the Russian Defence Ministry, which tests new aircraft systems, onboard radars, and weapons. According to published annual photographs of the airfield, aircraft with number 053 and aircraft with number 510 were based there, and the latter is used as a flying laboratory where Russia has for the past few years been testing the Su 57 with different weapon systems

Anyway yesterday, Kyiv struck the runway and damaged at least one Su 57 (acknowledged by Moscow) and it appears that a second may have been taken out as well. 

Say what you want about this war, but one thing is becoming very clear, for Moscow, this has become a very expensive affair.  

Gaza: Operation Arnon: The rescuing of 4 Israeli hostages from Gaza.

(NuseiratThis is how the operation to rescue Noa Argamani, Almog Meir Jan, Shlomi Ziv, and Andrei Kozlov was conducted.

Thursday, 6:30 PM: After meticulous planning, drills, models, and advanced intelligence tracking that lasted for many weeks, the political echelon approves the operation initially named "Summer Seeds." The authorization was given in a classified discussion, under heavy secrecy, waiting for the right moment.

Saturday, 10:00 AM: Two main commando teams launch from several directions, disguised, towards the Nuseirat refugee camp near the coast. The forces move in broad daylight covertly towards the two buildings where the hostages were held, amidst thousands of Palestinians and hundreds of terrorists from the local Hamas battalion, who do not notice them. According to the Palestinians, the forces entered using a humanitarian aid truck, and Al Jazeera even published footage of it with IDF vehicles, apparently from moments after the operation. The IDF denied this and also denied using the American dock later on.

10:45: Special ground observations and technological tracking means from Air Force aircraft identify that the area is clear, and there is no suspicious movement in the two buildings, which are 3-4 stories high. In one of them, Noa Argamani was held, and in the other, the three remaining hostages, along with Gazan families and armed guards. 

10:50: The information and live footage of the alleys, hundreds of meters long, separating the two targets are transmitted to screens in two command posts overseeing the operation: one of the Shin Bet in central Israel, attended by the head of the service Ronen Bar and Chief of Staff Herzi Halevi, and the Southern Command in Be'er Sheva, from where the Southern Command chief managed the surrounding and rescue forces.

11:00: The two ground teams receive the "execute" order, personally approved in real-time by the Shin Bet head and the Chief of Staff. They storm the buildings simultaneously and in full coordination, at the same second, to prevent the terrorists at the second target from discovering it, which would endanger the hostages. 

11:10: While the elimination of the terrorists guarding Argamani and her rescue goes relatively smoothly, the operation at the second building is much more complicated. Commander Zamora’s team reports being hit in the exchange of fire. The fighters who eliminated the terrorists at that target treat their commander and try to save him while exiting the building under increasing fire.

11:15: Over the radio, the awaited announcement is reported: "The diamonds are in our hands," meaning the hostages are with us.

11:20: Under the cover of delay, dozens of terrorists accumulate around the building where the three hostages were held, and hundreds more armed with RPG launchers, PK machine guns, and Kalashnikov rifles approach from all sides. They run through the narrow alleys and the nearby market, crowded with thousands of Gazans.

11:22: The forces attempt to escape in the rescue vehicle, but it is hit by heavy fire and starts to falter. Southern Command chief Yaron Finkelman activates the pre-prepared rescue plan. 

11:25: Air Force fighter jets and helicopters launch dozens of munitions towards the terrorists to isolate the scene. Hundreds of soldiers from Brigades 7, Paratroopers, Givati, and Kfir, who were positioned as reinforcements, are rushed in on foot, tanks, and Namer APCs into the refugee camp, with Navy ships providing cover from the west.

11:30: The reinforcement forces and the Air Force manage to isolate the main battle zone, providing a safe escape route for the main force with the three hostages. The Southern Command authorizes, in a rare move, the Air Force Sikorsky helicopters to land deep inside the Gaza Strip, under cover fire from fighter jets. The aerial fire hits the terrorists, dozens of meters from the soldiers. 

11:50: The last of the special forces board the helicopters that take off for hospitals in Israel. Resuscitation attempts for Commander Zamora continue in the air, but at the hospital, they are forced to pronounce his death. The reinforcement forces from IDF brigades continue to engage the terrorists around the operation area, eliminating dozens more until the operation concludes.

Chief Inspector Arnon Zmora, who was killed in a mission to rescue hostages held in the Gaza Strip, June 8, 2024.

1:33 PM: The IDF, Shin Bet, and police officially announce the rescue of the four hostages, and spontaneous celebrations begin both in Israel and among Israelis abroad.

Thursday, June 6, 2024

Interlude: The Dandy Warhols - Bohemian Like You