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Crunchy Frog

Crunchy Frog's Journal
Crunchy Frog's Journal
April 20, 2022

Harvard Law professor says US should liquidate Russia's foreign reserves and use the money to fund

military aid to Ukraine

A Harvard Law School professor suggested recently that the US should liquidate Russia's foreign reserves and use the money to fund Ukrainian military aid.

Russia's central bank may have up to $100 billion in foreign exchange reserves sitting in the US and liquidating the funds may be an "obvious solution" to punishing Russia for its unprovoked war against Ukraine, constitutional law professor Laurence Tribe and Harvard Law student Jeremy Lewin wrote in a New York Times op-ed published on Friday. 

Liquidating the funds could be a quick way to unlock money to provide military aid for Ukraine, while also saving American taxpayers from feeling "burdened," Tribe and Lewin wrote. 


https://www.businessinsider.com/us-should-liquidate-russias-foreign-reserves-ukraine-war-harvard-professor-2022-4

It seems like that would solve a lot of problems. Would also be a good source of funds for humanitarian aid, and to get a start on rebuilding.
April 17, 2022

Bound, beaten, killed: Ukrainian civilians reveal horrors of Russian torture chamber

Special report: One prisoner recalls how a man was beaten to death next to him. Another recounts being stripped, stabbed and subjected to electric shocks. In recently liberated Trostyanets in Sumy, Bel Trew speaks to torture victims and uncovers fresh evidence of possible war crimes in northeast Ukraine


Blindfolded, arms and legs bound, and lying in the corner of the torture room, Dima could only hear his fellow prisoner scream and his ribs crack, as the man was beaten to death next to him.

The soldiers had grunted with exertion as they bound the prisoner – Kolya – into the “lastochka” or “swallow” position, an infamous torture method long favoured by Russian forces.

Dima remembers how Kolya, who had apparently denounced Moscow publicly, was subjected to particularly savage violence. Even after Kolya was dragged to the blood-stained room, he refused to stop cursing Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, fuelling the relentless blows that rained down on him.


https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/ukraine-russia-torture-chamber-killing-murder-b2059421.html

Anyway, interesting article.
April 17, 2022

Should the West take steps to unblock ports in Ukraine to prevent global famine?

The world is threatened by famine if Russia does not unblock the ports of Ukraine - the UN


Ukrainian repositories are overflowing with grain, which helps feed 400 million people worldwide in a typical year. But the supply chain has been disrupted by the war, and ports cannot function properly in the center of the war zone.

The director of the UN World Food Program, David Beasley, said that global food supplies were under threat because the Ukrainian ports of Odesa, Chernomorsk and Mykolayiv were blocked.

"We have not made any progress. This is where the international community must come in and make very serious decisions about protecting ports for humanitarian purposes and opening ports to the world. Because the whole world will pay the price if we do not open ports," he said. UN programs.

The UN spokesman warned that there was a shortage in the world food market and a further sharp rise in food prices would be a disaster for poor countries.
David Beasley explained that Ukrainian farmers can still reap a harvest that will help feed the world's hungry. But this requires that the war cease immediately and the southern ports and Black Sea routes be open.

https://www.reddit.com/r/ukraine/comments/u5cbzr/the_world_is_threatened_by_famine_if_russia_does/
https://www.reddit.com/r/ukraine/comments/u5cbzr/comment/i512ya3/

Does the prospect of mass starvation in the developing world alter the calculus for anyone?




April 16, 2022

Alternate take.

I think it has more to do with it being a clear act of unprovoked aggression by a military superpower against a smaller and weaker country.

There is a clarity with the Ukraine situation that is lacking in these other ones which tend to be civil wars or insurgencies, or involve non-state militia groups. It's often far less easy to distinguish "good guys" from "bad guys". Oftentimes both, or all sides, appear to be equally, or similarly bad. They also tend to be more complex, with no easy solutions.

There's also the fact that these types of conflict are relatively common, and often very long lasting, and people kind of get used to them, almost as a status quo, while a conflict at this level has not happened in Europe since the end of WWII.

That said, there is just as much civilian suffering, and we should pay more attention than we do.

I believe that if/when China launches a similar attack against Taiwan, that we will see similar sorts of reactions, as it will be a similar type of conflict, despite the fact that the victims will not be white. I hope that my hypothesis on this won't get tested.

April 14, 2022

Russians intentionally planted mines and booby traps to kill or maim civilians.

https://www.nytimes.com/live/2022/04/13/world/ukraine-russia-war-news#russia-land-mines-ukraine

Residents and authorities say that departing Russian soldiers have laced large swaths of the country with buried land mines and jury-rigged bombs — some hidden as booby traps inside homes. The explosives now must be found and neutralized before residents can resume a semblance of normal life.

Some of the explosives have been attached to washing machines, doorways, car windows, and other places where they can kill or injure civilians returning to their homes, according to residents and Ukrainian officials. Some were even hidden under hospital stretchers and corpses.

President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine this week called his country “one of the most contaminated by mines in the world,” and said that authorities were working to clear thousands in the areas from which Russian armies had retreated in recent weeks. He accused Russian soldiers of leaving the explosives in their wake “to kill or maim as many of our people as possible.”

He said that the tactic was a war crime and that Russian soldiers must have been acting on instructions from top officials, adding: “Without the appropriate orders, they would not have done it.”


The Russian military appears to be nothing more than a glorified terrorist organization.

April 12, 2022

83 year old Ukrainian woman describes rape.

"I wish he had killed me instead of what he did"

The women of Ukraine are living under a constant threat, with growing evidence of sexual violence emerging as the war carries on. 

Vera, an 83-year-old retired school teacher, told CBS News that her village was occupied by Russian forces last month when she was raped.


https://www.cbsnews.com/news/ukraine-russia-war-soliders-rape/

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Name: Debbie Downer
Gender: Female
Home country: A republic if we can keep it.
Member since: Sun Oct 26, 2003, 05:06 AM
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