"Free people can say 'no'. Free people can refuse demands for their money, time, and children. Slaves cannot. There is no freedom without the freedom to say 'no'. If someone demands that you do something and you can say 'no' and refuse to do it, then you are a free human being. If you can be forced to do something or surrender something that you do not wish to, then you are a slave. No other test need be applied" -- Michael Rivero

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F-16 fighter jets and any airfields they are based at will be legitimate targets for the Russian military if they participate in combat missions against Moscow’s forces, the chairman of the Russian State Duma Defense Committee, Andrey Kartapolov, has warned.

The comments come as Kiev prepares to receive the first delivery of US-made fighter jets from its Western backers, after Ukrainian pilots were trained to fly them.   

In a statement to RIA Novosti published on Monday, Kartapolov clarified that if the F-16s “are not used for their intended purpose” or are simply held in storage at foreign airbases with the intent to transfer them to Ukraine, where they will be equipped, maintained, and flown from Ukrainian airfields, then Russia would have no claims against its “former partners” and would not target them.  

However, if the jets take off from foreign bases and carry out sorties and strikes against Russian forces, both the fighter planes and the airfields they are stationed at will be “legitimate targets,” according to Kartapolov. 

“As for [our ability] to shoot [them] down, we can shoot down anyone, anywhere,” the MP insisted. 

Kartapolov’s statement comes after the chief of aviation of Ukraine’s Air Force Command, Sergey Golubtsov, stated in an interview with Radio Liberty on Sunday that some of the F-16 fighter jets donated to Kiev by the West would be stationed at foreign airbases. 

Tags: EUROPE, NATO, RUSSIA/ UKRAINE /BELARUS /CRIMEA, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS, WHITE HOUSE
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Yesterday, a Ukrainian GAZ-66 truck with "military" license plates illegally crossed the border into Hungary from the Zakarpattia region of Ukraine. Local border guards found the truck and detained 32 Ukrainian citizens.

It turned out, the truck was filled with new Ukraine Army "Recruits" - men who had been forcibly grabbed off streets in Ukraine, held for three days, given uniforms, and sent to the front lines to die.

The men took a military truck across a field in Zakarpattia, entered Hungary, and surrendered to Police in Hungary.

The government of Hungary has granted the men asylum.

Tags: EUROPE, RUSSIA/ UKRAINE /BELARUS /CRIMEA, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS
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France appears increasingly isolated in its decision to intervene directly in the Ukrainian conflict. Not even major Western powers are willing to openly confront Moscow on the battlefield, given the high likelihood of a catastrophic war arising as a result of such a move. Now, Berlin is already signaling that it will not support the French move.

According to the German newspaper Welt am Sonntag, the German government is preparing to publicly refuse its support for France’s anti-Russian military initiative. The outlet, citing sources familiar with state affairs, claims that French officials are pressuring several NATO members to cooperate in sending troops to Ukraine. Reports show that the French army’s chief of staff, General Thierry Burkhard, wrote a letter calling on the US and at least 10 other NATO countries to join Paris in intervening in Ukraine.

Germany, however, was not included in the French general’s letter, the sources say. This means that German officials have most likely already made it clear, in secret, to their French counterparts that they are not interested in directly participating in the conflict with Russia. According to the sources, during negotiations in Brussels, Germany, along with other countries such as Italy and Spain, ruled out the possibility of sending troops to Ukraine. If the pressure continues, Germany is expected to make a public statement denying aid to France.

Webmaster addition: The recent European elections, which saw a hard shift to the right, may throw a bucket of ice water on Europe's enthusiasm for war!

Tags: FRANCE, RUSSIA/ UKRAINE /BELARUS /CRIMEA, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS
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  • Ukrainian forces fired at least 12 ATACMS tactical missiles from the Nikolaev region towards Crimea;
  • Ukrainian forces fired several missiles at S-400 air defense system in Dzhankoy;
  • Ukrainian forces fired several missiles at S-300 air defense systems in Chernomorskoye;
  • Ukrainian forces fired several missiles at S-300 air defense systems in Yevpatoria.
Tags: RUSSIA/ UKRAINE /BELARUS /CRIMEA, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS
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Some of the F-16 fighter jets that Kiev expects from the Western countries will be deployed at safe airfields outside Ukraine, Sergey Golubtsov, the chief of aviation of the Ukrainian Air Force Command has said.

"There is a certain number of airplanes [F-16s] that will be at safe bases, not in Ukraine, so that they should not become targets here. This will be our reserve in case we need to replace defective aircraft and during maintenance work," he said in an interview with the Ukrainian service of Radio Liberty radio station (recognized in Russia as a foreign media agent and included in the register of undesirable organizations).

Golubtsov also said that Ukraine would need at least two Patriot air defense systems, two NASAMS air defense systems, and several self-propelled Gepard air defense systems to protect the F-16s’ airfields.

Webmaster addition: So Sergey claims the F-16s in other countries will be safe from attack, then turns around and admits the planes will have to have defensive systems. They WANT Russia to attack those F-16s in order to widen the war!

Tags: EUROPE, RUSSIA/ UKRAINE /BELARUS /CRIMEA, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS
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Russian and Egyptian naval ships plan to hold joint exercises during a visit of Russian warships to Alexandria, the Russian Defense Ministry said.

According to the ministry, the ships that called at Alexandria are the Guards Missile Cruiser Varyag and frigate Marshal Shaposhnikov. As part of the call, on Russia Day, June 12, the Varyag will host a reception with representatives of the Egyptian Navy Command.

"The call of Russian warships will last to June 14 and will end with a bilateral Passex exercise with Egyptian naval ships. The ships will practice elements of joint maneuvering, conduct training in communication and inspection," the ministry said.

The call of Russian warships at Alexandria is another practical step in strengthening Russian-Egyptian naval cooperation, according to the ministry.

Tags: EGYPT, RUSSIA/ UKRAINE /BELARUS /CRIMEA, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS
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Alastair explores the historical context that has shaped modern Israel, the ongoing conflicts and peace processes, and the broader implications for the Middle East and beyond. Alastair provides unique perspectives on the challenges and opportunities facing Israel today, from security concerns to socio-political developments.

Tags: ISRAEL, PALESTINE, TORTURE/ WAR CRIMES, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS
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Colombia's President Gustavo Petro has suspended coal exports to Israel amidst the ongoing conflict in Gaza. This decision aims to pressure Israel to halt its military operations, highlighting Colombia's significant role in Israel's coal supply chain. With over $320 million worth of coal exports to Israel in 2022 alone, this suspension could have far-reaching consequences.

Tags: ENERGY, ISRAEL, PALESTINE, SOUTH/CENTRAL AMERICA, TORTURE/ WAR CRIMES, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS
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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s Chief of Staff Andrey Yermak is reportedly calling the shots in the country amid the ongoing war with Russia. Multiple Ukrainian officials have complained to British daily The Times about the growing power of Vladimir Zelensky’s chief of staff Andrey Yermak, who they say de facto runs Ukraine. Yermak has also been accused of orchestrating the ouster of General Valery Zaluzhny in February, because he saw him as a rival. So, who is Andrey Yermak? Why is referred to as Zelensky’s “right-hand” man?

Tags: RUSSIA/ UKRAINE /BELARUS /CRIMEA, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS
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Thanks to the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, we indeed seem to be rushing headlong into a major war—possibly a World War Three, possibly the world’s first (and perhaps last) nuclear war. Ukraine leadership and their Western backers seem hell-bent on fighting to the last man, and Vladimir Putin, as an old-school Cold Warrior, seems equally determined to press ahead until achieving “victory.” The cause seems hopeless for Ukraine, who cannot reasonably expect to prevail in an extended conflict with one of the largest militaries on Earth. At best, they may bleed Russia over a period of months or years, but only at the cost of massive blood-letting themselves. It seems that Ukraine will be the loser in this struggle, no matter what comes.

In the Western media, we are presented with a remarkably simplified storyline: Putin is an evil warmonger who simply wants to extend Russian territory; to this end, he is exploiting events in Ukraine, deploying his military ostensibly to support the Russian-speaking districts of Luhansk and Donetsk in the Donbass region of eastern Ukraine. But this is just cover, they say, for his mad quest to rebuild the Russian empire. In pursuit of his goal, he is willing to inflict any amount of material damage and kill any number of civilians. Fortunately, say our media, Putin has thus far been largely contained; the brave Ukrainian fighters are constantly “reclaiming” land, Russia’s advance has “stalled,” and indeed, Russia seems to be in danger of losing.

Consequently, the US and its allies must do all they can to “aid” and “support” the brave Ukrainians and their beleaguered but heroic leader, Volodymyr Zelensky. No amount of money, no assortment of deadly weaponry, no military intelligence, is too much. Like World War Two, this “war” is an unconditional struggle of Good versus Evil; therefore the West, as the moral paragon of the world, must step up, undergo sacrifice, and ensure that Good prevails.

Tags: ISRAEL, RUSSIA/ UKRAINE /BELARUS /CRIMEA, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS, WHITE HOUSE, WMD
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In January of this year, a Russian A-50 airborne early warning aircraft was hit by an American Patriot anti-aircraft missile system. This information was shared by Colonel, Deputy Chief of Staff of the 10th Air and Missile Defense Command of the US Army Rosanna Clemente.

The officer said that the defenders of the Ukrainian state used aerial ambush tactics. According to her, the fighters were specially prepared for this - in the middle of the night, the instructors activated the Patriot battery, the order was given to go to the firing position, “work out,” and then retreat.

The colonel added that Ukraine is currently armed with up to a battalion of Patriot air defense systems. “Some of them are used to protect stationary objects, others move and do truly historical things. I have not seen this in 22 years of work in air defense,” she emphasized.

Tags: RUSSIA/ UKRAINE /BELARUS /CRIMEA, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS, WHITE HOUSE
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Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the slain leader of the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group, was subjected to "sexual torture" during his time in US custody back in 2004, claims his widow.

Umm Hudaifa, currently detained in a Baghdad prison, shed light on her life alongside Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, in an interview with BBC published on Monday.

Before he was held in 2004, al-Baghdadi was “religious but not extremist” and “conservative but open minded,” Umm Hudaifa said who is currently under investigation in an Iraqi jail for her ties to Daesh.

She claimed that a year-long detention in US-run Camp Bucca caused a significant change in Baghdadi’s personality, as he was reportedly arrested after founding a militant group to purportedly combat US and allied occupation forces in Iraq. She said that he told her that during his detention, he was subjected to something “you cannot understand.”

Tags: IRAQ, TORTURE/ WAR CRIMES, WAR/DRAFT/ VETERAN AFFAIRS, WHITE HOUSE
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According to a report by the news network, “The purpose of the national American Miss program is to grow confidence and foster a positive self-image.” This despite the fact that the level of obesity displayed by Milliken is linked with all manner of horrible diseases like diabetes, heart disease, strokes, and certain cancers. Respondents weren’t very impressed with the result. “Dang I didn’t realize this was a cattle auction,” wrote one. “This 500 pound woman is supposed to be a role model to kids,” added another. Some expressed gratitude for the fact that at least Milliken is a biological female, unlike the winner of Miss Maryland USA, who is a man. “She practiced 365 days? What? Eating?” remarked another.
Tags: CURRENT EVENTS
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The retail industry has been a challenging battleground lately, with consumers facing high inflation and economic uncertainty. Target, one of America's retail leaders, recently reported troubling financial results impacting the entire industry. In their latest earnings report, Target revealed concerning trends highlighting the economic challenges affecting consumers and businesses. With its iconic bull's-eye logo displayed in nearly 2,000 stores nationwide, the retail giant has always been seen as an indicator of the U.S. economy's health. When a company as influential as Target begins to struggle, it serves as a warning that requires action from consumers, investors, and policymakers.
Tags: ECONOMY
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Windows maker acknowledges 'clear signal' from everyone, then mostly ignores it
Tags: COMPUTERS/INTERNET/AI
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In Australia, you can preside over human rights abuses, you can run the healthcare system into the ground, you can authorise police violence on citizens, you can blow billions on cancelled infrastructure projects, and you can name-call from the bully pulpit – and we’ll give you an award for it. Today, Australia’s two most aggressive Covid-era premiers, Daniel Andrews (Victoria) and Mark McGowan (Western Australia), were awarded the nation’s top honour, the Companion of the Order of Australia (AC). In the 2024 King’s Birthday Honours roll, only six Australians received the award, which signifies “eminent achievement and merit of the highest degree in service to Australia or to humanity at large”.
Tags: AUSTRALIA, CURRENT EVENTS
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Reform UK's Richard Tice has said that the amount at which people first start to pay income tax should be lifted from £12,570 to £20,000. He said the policy would mean Britons taking home an extra £1,500 in pay each year, almost £30 a week.
Tags: ECONOMY, GREAT BRITAIN/ UK, POLITICS/ ELECTIONS/ CORRUPTION
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