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peugeot407
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 9:31 pm    Post subject:

No, the general idea among the people seems to be that since the Levant is already de facto divided into two states, it would be best to make that the de jure situation as well.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 21, 2014 7:20 pm    Post subject:

Quote:
They wouldn't have stood a chance either way.

What a good way to paraphrase what I just said! lol

Quote:
Well, it is sort of implied with all of the divinely sanctioned wars, genocides, and pillaging - not to mention direct orders to kill every last living thing that lives in the cities god has promised to the Israelites. Besides, if it's their land it's up to them if they want to share it. If they don't, then that's too bad.

Rhetorical question ^^

How do you think this debacle with the MH17 will end? I really hope Germany finally realises they can't sit on the fence. I heard the Netherlands commissioned a war crime investigation, as well...
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2014 12:51 pm    Post subject:

peugeot407 wrote:
No, the general idea among the people seems to be that since the Levant is already de facto divided into two states, it would be best to make that the de jure situation as well.
That's oversimplifying it a bit, isn't it? I mean, while there may be some form of border it is obvious that quite a lot of people aren't happy with them. The other option, where you would have two states sharing the same territory isn't without issue either.

Would making the de facto situation the de jure situation make people stop shooting at each other/claiming each other's land? Doubtful.

Harkimo wrote:
What a good way to paraphrase what I just said!
Rhetorical question ^^
1. My bad, I missed the "especially" Razz
2. Rhetorical answer.

Quote:
How do you think this debacle with the MH17 will end? I really hope Germany finally realises they can't sit on the fence. I heard the Netherlands commissioned a war crime investigation, as well...
I don't think it will end in anything. War is war, people die. As terrible as it is worse things have happened countless times without anyone really caring. But then it also depends a bit on who is the culprit Rolling Eyes

I honestly doubt shooting down civilian aircraft is a part of some evil plan conceived in the Kremlin, since it would be an obviously stupid move. Russia may have provided weapons, or even people, but their intended target most likely was military aircraft.

As such I don't see how it is more of a war crime than the Americans bombing schools and hospitals in Afghanistan and Iraq because they thought they were hideouts for bad guys. Or the west supplying weapons and help to rebels in the Arab world, who then went on mad killing sprees.

I also doubt it is, as some say, a plan from the Ukrainians to make the rebels/Russians look bad.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2014 7:51 pm    Post subject:

You never know. They might very well find some sort of basis for war crime allegations... Law is very important when it's on your side.

It's interesting that Russia would choose to provide so sophisticated weaponry to operators without sufficient training. Maybe they're starting to get desperate. They should be now, either way.
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:58 pm    Post subject:

Harkimo wrote:
You never know. They might very well find some sort of basis for war crime allegations... Law is very important when it's on your side.
Perspective. It's funny how much difference it makes Mr. Green

Quote:
It's interesting that Russia would choose to provide so sophisticated weaponry to operators without sufficient training. Maybe they're starting to get desperate. They should be now, either way.
Without training? They managed to shoot down an aeroplane traveling at high speed at high altitude. That's not something an untrained chimp can pull off. Identifying what plane exactly it is, though, that's something different. Perhaps the oafs who fired didn't have access to that information.

Why do you think the Russians/Putin should be desperate? The way I see it this conflict has more or less gone their way the whole time.

I heard Putin has employed a taster, though. Wouldn't want to get poisoned lol

Oh, and the Ukrainian PM has resigned. That's an interesting development.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 11:10 am    Post subject:

He has? How odd. I haven't heard anything about that. I'm not so surprised Putin fears poisoning, though.

From what I've heard from the fellow nerds over at reddit, it seems it's quite easy to tell the difference between a 777 and an AN-26, considering the different shape, height etc.

What? They've been losing ground for a long time now, and things might get worse for the Russian economy very soon if the conflict escalates.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 8:39 pm    Post subject:

I'm sorry if this became too lengthy; it just spilled out. Topmodel

Quote:
I'm not so surprised Putin fears poisoning, though.
No, I think I would as well if I were in his position Razz

Quote:
From what I've heard from the fellow nerds over at reddit, it seems it's quite easy to tell the difference between a 777 and an AN-26, considering the different shape, height etc.
Errrrr... From underneath, from a distance of 10 kilometres or more? Come on. Maybe if you're a massive aviation nerd, but otherwise "quite easy" ought to be a massive overstatement, even if you assume perfect weather conditions where neither the sun nor any clouds is causing issues.

That is of course, again, assuming they were mistaking it for an An-26 and not one of the bigger, jet-powered, transport aircraft the Ukrainian air force employs.

They would probably have slightly different radar profiles, but that is yet again assuming the radar equipment they had is sophisticated enough to tell the difference. I don't know the details of the weapon system, but I doubt whatever targeting mechanism it has is able to make the distinction. It's not the sort of thing you'd focus on in a crash course on how to shoot down planes either.

All of this of course ignores the question why they would want to shoot down a passenger airliner from the Netherlands en route to Malaysia. What conceivable benefit would it bring?

Quote:
What? They've been losing ground for a long time now, and things might get worse for the Russian economy very soon if the conflict escalates.
So what if the rebels have been loosing some ground? I don't think it's all that important from a Russian strategic perspective. It was always a long shot that the rebels would somehow "conquer" Ukraine for the Russians.

What's more important is that most of the focus at the moment is on the rebels in eastern Ukraine. There has been very little talk and very little press about Crimea as of lately. Before we know it and the rebel conflict is over the peninsula will have been in Russian hands for a year and they will have consolidated their power there. To avoid further trouble they will probably get to keep it.

They were about to lose influence over Ukraine and some other neighbouring countries anyway; now they've probably managed to keep at least one strategic area. Meanwhile, the rebels are doing their job in destabilizing and making life miserable in Ukraine, a fitting revenge for traitors and splitters.

The problem with the sanctions against Russia from a western perspective are multiple.
  • They could potentially cause economic turmoil here as well.
  • Sanctions are rarely that effective at achieving what they are supposed to anyway
  • Powerful countries aren't really interested in sanctions because they value their relations with Russia more than they value Ukraine, even if they publicly pretend otherwise.

Lastly, any sanctions against Russia wouldn't stop these rebels. They probably already have weapons to keep going for quite some time, and Putin can no more stop them than anyone else. That's at least what he can claim. So the risk for any serious sanctions isn't overwhelming, I'd say.

All in all, not too shabby. They've played it well from the start.
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2014 9:19 pm    Post subject:

It's a prop plane. Pretty easily distinguished from a large jet. Nobody said anything about doing it on purpose.

Ukraine is cutting of the Russian border from the rebels. I doubt they're strong enough to take on the Crimean forces, but on the other hand, strategically that's not a big change from before the war. If they only wanted Crimea, it would be unnecessary to throw men, money and your slowly built up trust into a second operation merely to distract the UA from Crimea, which they obviously can't retake Rolling Eyes

Their loss of trust is nothing positive. Eastern Europe will start building up independence from Russian gas. Putin could also lose support from several important oligarchs.

The goal of the sanctions isn't to stop the rebels, it never has been you dingus. It's to show presence to Russia, and if possible, give them some kind of punishment.

In the end, the sanctions will come down to safety of the rest of eastern Europe. I doubt the nationalists in there would approve of Russia dominating their economy.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 8:27 pm    Post subject:

Quote:
It's a prop plane. Pretty easily distinguished from a large jet. Nobody said anything about doing it on purpose.
Anyone who is suggesting that it is easy to distinguish between an airliner and a Ukrainian transport plane, and thus that the rebels knew what they were shooting at, are also suggesting that they either did it on purpose or that they identified it and then proceeded to shoot it down by mistake. As option two isn't very plausible...

A 777 on 10 000 metres will, the minute when it's at it largest, look equivalent to a grey pinhead held at about arm's length (0.5 m)against the blue sky. Doing that experiment will favour the pinhead though, as you have your entire arm pointing at it and because it is assuming the plane's wings extend along the entire fuselage and that it's maximum surface area is facing you. The point is: it's very hard to make out any sort of detail.

That's not something I just pulled out of thin air - I actually sat down and did the maths. Mr. Green It's very simple, so you can check for yourself.

I would concede that an AN-26 would be even harder to spot as it is almost half the size, but when I adjusted for the assumed difference in altitude (as a prop plane doesn't fly as high) it turned out that it would look almost the same size as the 777 Razz I don't think it has much anything to do with it, but it was still an interesting result.

Quote:
Ukraine is cutting of the Russian border from the rebels. I doubt they're strong enough to take on the Crimean forces, but on the other hand, strategically that's not a big change from before the war. If they only wanted Crimea, it would be unnecessary to throw men, money and your slowly built up trust into a second operation merely to distract the UA from Crimea, which they obviously can't retake
Oh, it's not to distract the Ukrainian army. A bit, perhaps, but they will not forget about Crimea.

It is to distract the population and leaders of all the countries who are not so immediately affected but will be the ones who are key to conceding any territorial changes. You, me, and the rest of western Europe. When the Rebels are defeated a lot of people will consider it a sufficient defeat for the Russians and the support for any military intervention on Crimea or expensive sanctions will decline. That's at least what I think, but we'll see.

Quote:
Their loss of trust is nothing positive. Eastern Europe will start building up independence from Russian gas. Putin could also lose support from several important oligarchs.
What do you mean their loss of trust? Since when did anyone trust the Russians?

Europe is practically dominated by two alliances who are fundamentally anti-Russian: NATO and the EU. There has been a buffer one of some countries between NATO, the EU and Russia, a situation the two former entities had said would remain. But what's happened? The EU has expanded, NATO has expanded, new missile bases have been built facing Russia. Constantly there has been talk about how we must decrease our dependence on Russian energy products, that's not something new (even though we've actually done the opposite because there is a lack of options). Don't you think that at least some people in Russia may feel that our side already have violated whatever trust they had in us?

Remember that they are much weaker not only financially and in terms of population, but also militarily. While they seem to be aware of it, I sometimes get the feeling that we don't.

Also, the whole "we will become independent from Russian energy" is obviously much easier said than done - as there has been talk about it for a long, long time. And it's not just the countries in eastern Europe. Much of continental Europe is dependant on Russian gas and oil - some 60% of all the petrol used in Sweden is Russian.

We are in dire need of growth, and one thing we know is a great catalyst for growth is cheap energy. For that we need Russia.

Quote:
The goal of the sanctions isn't to stop the rebels, it never has been you dingus. It's to show presence to Russia, and if possible, give them some kind of punishment.
If the sanctions aren't about the rebels, then why would they be issued on the condition that the rebel conflict escalates? You don't just hand out sanctions as general punishments; you accompany them with some kind of demand. Any demands that has to do with the rebels Putin should (officially) be able to comply with. Anything that has to do with Crimea - well, it's a little late for that now and not really worth it.

Quote:

In the end, the sanctions will come down to safety of the rest of eastern Europe. I doubt the nationalists in there would approve of Russia dominating their economy.
That's what triggered this in the first place: first the Baltic countries and then Ukraine being 'snared' from them by the EU, contrary to what had been promised. It is at any rate more of a cause than a consequence of this conflict.
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 9:48 pm    Post subject:

First off, I never said they were doing it intentionally. I was saying for (the last time) that they were to incompetent to notice the difference. If you didn't get that, you probably didn't even read my post.

It still doesn't make any more sense. They're getting just as much shit thrown at them now as before Donetsk, if not more.

Don't tell me about how NATO and that shit works. Stop patronizing all ready, I've been through this with you once.

I didn't say anything about "We". I pointed out the fact that as of now, Eastern Europe is very dependent on gas from Russia. They'll most likely start building up independence from it as their economies grow.

You need to stop putting words in my mouth to fuel your own arguments.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 28, 2014 8:50 am    Post subject:

Harkimo wrote:

Don't tell me about how NATO and that shit works. Stop patronizing all ready, I've been through this with you once.
Sad Look, that's really not my intention. All I am doing is explaining and sharing my own thought process. That may include saying things you, and anybody really, already know.

Please don't take it as some form of disrespect from my side, because it is the opposite. In my mind the explanation is as important as the fact or the belief, even if it is obvious. That's probably why so many of my posts are so long (even though I usually edit out things before I post). I don't want anyone to guess what I mean when I say something.

I wouldn't invest all that time and effort just to patronize you or squash you. I do it so that you and anyone else who may read it can scrutinize the quality on my conclusions. It would be much harder for you to do that if I only presented the end product.

So if you feel like I'm trying to put you down all I can say is I'm very sorry and please don't feel that way, because it isn't my intention.

That's how I feel, ok? Smile


------------
Quote:
First off, I never said they were doing it intentionally.
And so we were/are in agreement. You also said that you'd heard that it is easy to tell the difference between the two planes. That, and the implication that follows - namely that the rebels should have known what they were shooting at - is what I've disagreed with. And I've told you why.

Quote:
I was saying for (the last time) that they were to incompetent to notice the difference. If you didn't get that, you probably didn't even read my post.
I can assure you I did. If it is this you're referring to
Quote:
It's interesting that Russia would choose to provide so sophisticated weaponry to operators without sufficient training.
am sorry to convey that I didn't understand that you meant in terms of identifying planes as well as operating the weapons system. To me, that's not abundantly clear. In my reply though I did specify that I was talking about the operational skills.

Have I missed something elsewhere? If you mean what you wrote on Sunday the 25th, I've already quoted and explained how I understood it.

Quote:
It still doesn't make any more sense. They're getting just as much shit thrown at them now as before Donetsk, if not more.
Yes, but perhaps they feel it is worth the price if they can gain something from it. Fear, which is often mistaken for respect, land, whatever. Revenge. It's no fun both feeling left out and being weakened at the same time. If you're about to go out, you might as well do it with a bang.

Of course I'm not trying to defend Russia's actions, I should point out. Acting the devil's advocate however, is often an intellectually rewarding experience.

Quote:
I didn't say anything about "We". I pointed out the fact that as of now, Eastern Europe is very dependent on gas from Russia. They'll most likely start building up independence from it as their economies grow.
Could you then please explain why you think it is important to distinguish between eastern Europe and the rest of Europe when one is talking about independence from Russian energy products? For my part, I used the word "we" because I feel the idea of Russian energy independence isn't in any way reserved to eastern Europe.

My actual question is this: how will they be able to build up that independence? With what source of energy?

Quote:
You need to stop putting words in my mouth to fuel your own arguments.
I hope I haven't this time, and if I have before I am sorry.

Also, I don't see this as an argument in the sense that we are of opposite opinions. I more see it like a discussion or an examination, an analysis of the situation.
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 28, 2014 9:05 am    Post subject:

I'm sorry, I didn't really phrase myself any good. I was too tired, and probably shouldn't have posted anything in the first place, being so easily agitated. :/ It's not really your fault.

Eastern Europe is, as of now, obviously not as economically strong as the rest of Europe. (Even though the economic crisis is affecting everyones economy.) In turn, this gives them lessend ability to choose. I'm convinced, though, that as they grow - their economies are very much on the rise,after all, they would be able to choose a more expensive source of energy. There's a reason why Russia mainly deals with poor countries, after all. The most likely source is obviously nuclear power, but there's plenty of rivers with promising water power possibilities as well, not forgetting wind, which could fetch some nice euros from the EU in future.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 29, 2014 9:43 am    Post subject:

Quote:
I'm sorry, I didn't really phrase myself any good. I was too tired, and probably shouldn't have posted anything in the first place, being so easily agitated. :/ It's not really your fault.
Well, phew lol It's cool though; if you don't think I behave you should tell me. Just keep what I said in mind for the future. Especially those who have been on this forum for years and years - which includes you - are very dear to me. I wouldn't dream of doing you wrong.

Quote:
I'm convinced, though, that as they grow - their economies are very much on the rise,after all, they would be able to choose a more expensive source of energy.
But it's a long way to Tipperary. If they say "we're going to get rich with the help of cheap Russian gas, so we can stop buying it later" the immediate Russian response could be either "pay up" or "ok, you can stop buying it now". Both would be disastrous.

Not to mention that if you are going to pour a lot of money into more expensive energy, it will hurt growth. They will lose a competitive edge if energy prices rise such that the industry becomes less profitable.

How many years do you reckon it will take to become independent of Russia?

Quote:
There's a reason why Russia mainly deals with poor countries, after all.
I'm not so sure they mainly deal with poor countries; it's more that the poor countries mainly deal with Russia.

Of course, they could start buying Gas from the Germans, which they in turn import from Russia through Nordstream, instead. Razz It wouldn't surprise me if the exports to Germany alone already is worth almost as much as the export to the east. I didn't find any hard figures, but some indication.

Quote:
The most likely source is obviously nuclear power, but there's plenty of rivers with promising water power possibilities as well, not forgetting wind, which could fetch some nice euros from the EU in future.
I'm all for nuclear power, but I know a lot of people aren't. Some other countries might try to stop it. I mean, why build nuclear when it's so much easier to by German coal? It's not as clean as NG, but anyway. Mr. Green Also, coincidentally Russia is the second largest source of Uranium in Europe lol

Perhaps some hydroelectric power could be built, but probably not enough. Wind is still expensive if you don't count the subsidies, and it needs regulatory and backup power.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 29, 2014 6:16 pm    Post subject:

Well, I'm still convinced they hate Putin more than they like gas. Buuut that's nothing new. It might take a long time, it might not. It all depends on how eager the loan givers are to get their money back, and obviously how quickly the economy recovers as a whole.

Nordstream... That's never going to be sustainable. We listened to a debate about that during EYP. Nuclear power isn't either, but it's certainly popular... And it's status as well. lol

Nuclear Power
+3 to Energy
-1 to Sustainability
Enhances national prestige
Enables research: Nuclear Weapons

Now, hydro is obviously never going to be able to account for all of the power. But it's one of the best options! It's not too bad for the environment, not too expensive and for a "elemental" source pretty good generation. Together with the power sources of the future (Razz), who knows?
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 31, 2014 6:43 pm    Post subject:

Quote:
Well, I'm still convinced they hate Putin more than they like gas. Buuut that's nothing new. It might take a long time, it might not. It all depends on how eager the loan givers are to get their money back, and obviously how quickly the economy recovers as a whole.
Such a pity that they have debtors in Russia. Didn't Ukraine have a huge pile of gas bills on credit, for instance? Maybe they aren't so eager to get their money back. It is sometimes much more useful to have people be in your debt. lol

I feel that a lot of people probably feel that the European economy is a bit fragile to give masses of money to ease the eastern part of Europe's dependence on Russian gas. I mean, wouldn't most countries want to start with themselves?

Quote:
Nordstream... That's never going to be sustainable. We listened to a debate about that during EYP.
Interesting; what do you mean by this? To my understanding it is operating as intended?

Quote:
Nuclear Power
+3 to Energy
-1 to Sustainability
Enhances national prestige
Enables research: Nuclear Weapons
-1000 to Chernobyl 2.0! lol

Fukushima really was a terrible hit on Nuclear power in terms of public confidence. Building new plants is always pesky as neighbouring countries whine. If you want to build now, you really want to make it a 4th generation plant, but as those still are in a semi research state they are hugely expensive. Hence it will be difficult to make a financial argument over coal for some of these countries, given their population and industries.

It's a bit of a pity, because gas is better than coal in almost every way measurable.

Quote:
Now, hydro is obviously never going to be able to account for all of the power. But it's one of the best options! It's not too bad for the environment, not too expensive and for a "elemental" source pretty good generation.
Honestly I don't know a lot about the potential for hydroelectric power in all of these countries, but it would surprise me if it was great. It feels as though the largest potential would already have been harvested during the Soviet era, but maybe not.

The guide in Tallinn told us that the highest point in the entire country was the TV tower. lol I don't know if it is true, but if it is... well, they have the same problem as Denmark Razz
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 31, 2014 10:06 pm    Post subject:

Yeah, because focusing on yourself has worked so fine thus far lol
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