As Russia Controls 51 Ukraine Ships And Moves More Tanks To The Borders, Obama Denounces "Brute Force"

Tyler Durden's picture

President Obama denounced Russia's "brute force" in Ukraine during a speech in Brussels today, but it seems from the images and clips below that Russia cares little for words and is more about strategic actions for now. Russia now, reportedly, controls 51 Ukraine Navy ships and while Merkel is talking tough, she is careful not to be too aggressive in her call for escalation. Talking of escalation, Russia tanks were being moved en masse across the nation to various borders.


Russian Forces Control 51 Ukraine Navy Ships in Crimea: Embassy

Ukraine retains 10 ships in Crimea, Ukrainian Embassy in Russia says in e-mailed newsletter.

But social media is flooded today with fresh pictures, videos, and reports of Russian tanks and troops on the move towards the Ukrainian border.


As InterprterMag notes,

After the annexation of Crimea, however, there was a military deescalation. Sources told us that the Russian troops were in position, but were no longer on the move in large numbers, and were not yet massed in large enough numbers that an invasion would be possible. Earlier this week, however, NATO began to once again raise the alarm that Russian forces were gathering to potentially invade Ukraine, or even move on to Moldova. Today, there are reports that Russian troops are indeed on the move near Ukraine’s borders.




There is another key difference. Much of the equipment spotted on the move today are not just troop transports and APCs. What we are seeing is reports of main battle tanks, support equipment, and other heavy weaponry. If Russia was not ready to invade two weeks ago, could these reinforcements be enough for an invasion?

Russian Tanks near the Ukrainian border


And MPCs on the roads


Furthermore, on the bypass road near Belgorod, more than 25 Mi-24 Hind attack helicopters have been spotted

Julia Karmo of Sky News Broadcasting has geolocated this video, which was taken yesterday in Novozybkov, in the Bryansk region of Russia. Karmo notes that the trains are on tracks that lead to towards Belarus or towards Ukraine.

and Somova, north-northeast from Voronezh


But the good news is that Gazprom...


might finally get paid



And while Merkel is talking tough


She is also backing away...


Leaving Obama to do the talking...

President Obama offered a sustained and forceful rejoinder against Russia on Wednesday, denouncing the “brute force” he said it has used to intimidate neighbors like Ukraine and vowing that the United States “will never waver” in standing up for its NATO allies against aggression by Moscow.

And after all that, this is happening...

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VD's picture

i called this many weeks ago....oh and Kuntsler is wrong again; talk about peak stupidity with a Neo-Malthusian wimper if he only had a squirt of humility....Russia can AFFORD to move toward Kiev and will do so...

Independent's picture

"Much of the equipment spotted on the move today are not just troop transports and APCs. What we are seeing is reports of main battle tanks, support equipment, and other heavy weaponry. If Russia was not ready to invade two weeks ago, could these reinforcements be enough for an invasion?"

The Russians have learned well from WW2 overpowering mechanized calvary and artillery does the job, also with overwhelming force it might make the Ukraine military forces just give up instead of fighting.  I mean why die fighting your brothers when the dual citizens are in the capital giving you orders and plundering your country. Dont forget the USA in Iraq also massed a lot of mechanized units with tanks and artillery.

What I am curious about is where the Russians will stop, I assume Dnieper River and also take the South including Odessa region to link up a land corridor with Transniester and to fuck up West Ukraine by leaving them no Port.  Besides Odessa is a pretty special place also.

The Western part has a large population that is less pro-Russian, so it makes sense to take East only which also has a smaller population and would be less of a drain financially. Also the East has more resources, like coal, steel and MIC factories the Russians depend on.  This would also save money for Crimea since all water and power and gas come through the Isthmus

Rafferty's picture

Why die fighting when the dual citizens are in the capital giving you orders and plundering your country?


Well that's exactly what the US military did on many an occasion.  And may do so again if Benny decides Iran must finally be taken out.

Independent's picture

Also one has to wonder at a strike on Kiev encircling the capital and shutting down its airport and communications, and trapping in the Neo Nazis and the Zio Nazis with their mercenaries from NATO, then dragging them in front of court and making them answer for their crimes of killing police and supporting terrorism and inciting it like Tymoshenko with the nukes comment.  I'm surprised they dont drone her to death, its not like the USA has not established the precedent.

If according to Obama Russia is a regional power then it sure makes the USA look bad cause it can't stop a regional power lol.  I am sure the Russians will rub his nose in on that one very soon.

Hey and sometimes the REPO man comes to collect the debts.  You don't think all that GAS was for free did you suckers.

Would like to see the Africans walk away from their China loans in the future now that China is increasing its aircraft carrier force.

Here is what the liberation of Ukraine will look like

Great documentary series, Soviet Storm Check it out sometime

"At this time Hitler agreed to a general withdrawal to the Dnieper line, along which was meant to be the Ostwall, a line of defence similar to the Westwall of fortifications along the German frontier in the west. The main problem for the Germans was that these defences had not yet been built, and by the time Army Group South had evacuated eastern Ukraine and begun withdrawing across the Dnieper during September, the Soviets were hard behind them. Tenaciously, small units paddled their way across the 3 km (1.9 mi) wide river and established bridgeheads.

As September ended, the Germans found the Dnieper line impossible to hold as the Soviet bridgeheads grew and important Dnieper towns started to fall. Finally, early in November the Soviets broke out of their bridgeheads on either side of Kiev and captured the Ukrainian capital."

Heed the words of the narrator in the beginning well.....

sushi's picture

 it sure makes the USA look bad cause it can't stop a regional power

US was defeated by a nation of goat herders and sheep stealers. Twice.

asteroids's picture

If it can be proved that Obozo interferred with Ukranian politics then Putin got rightly pissed and I would not be surprised if the Ukrain fell over a weekend.

sushi's picture

And if NATO wants to stop them it will require mobilizing equivalent armoured forces. Of course that requires lots of gas.


Better place the fuel orders with Putin now!


Stuck on Zero's picture

Not really true.  A few weapons transfers and the Ukraine could halt the Russians for so long that Putin would be booted from office.  500 stinger missiles, 10,000 satchel bombs, 1000 smart landmines,  5000 Barret 50 Cal sniper rifles, 1000 recoiless rifles, and a whole bunch of AK47s.  Of course, that would mean have ten thousand highly motivated fighters. 


Independent's picture

Maybe this is why the Russians will move in early rather than later, also I wouldnt put it over NATO to give Ukraine nuclear weapons and then have the Ukes claim that they built them from Scratch lol, and then threaten Russian conventional forces with them if they come over to help their Russian citizens in East Ukraine.  Which is why Putin may come in and decapitate the dual citizen Medusa hiding controlling Kierv.  This would let him spin off Western Ukraine as a no man's land with no govt and a carcass for Poland Hungary and Romania to feast on and deal with that economic mess.

Harlequin001's picture

Nothing is going to happen until Russia demands payment from Europe for its gas in gold.

Until then no one wants to upset the global financial system so Russia will take Ukraine and no one will stop it. The US and Europe really fucked up meddling in Ukraine, and now they are having their noses rubbed in it for all the world to see. If Russia demands payment from Europe for its gas in gold it means they have given up on the global financial system and we are at or going to a war no one can afford to fight.

Till then have a good holiday. Seems simple enough.

Lore's picture

Independent et al.,

I appreciate the comments, as this region is wholly unfamiliar to me -- and, I am sure, many others -- but don't you have doubts as to whether this is anything more than a show of force, a psychological operation, directed primarily toward non-aligned Ukrainian civilians and their local governments?   My reason for raising this is a conversation yesterday with a young woman who just came back from travelling around that region over a period of weeks.  Her information was remarkably on point, and she was stunned by the ignorance and misinformation on the part of Western (Canadian, in this case) media.  Her information was gathered locally, and her intel was the intel shared among Ukrainians. They are weighing the situation carefully based on more accurate information.  They see what has happened in every other American-led invasion / occupation over the last decade, and the EU trail of debt / economic devastation, and they don't want anything like that in their own back yard. This woman's strong opinion was that large numbers of Ukrainians are gearing up to join the pro-Russian side, just waiting for the right time. 

So to reiterate, don't you think this is just Putin's way of impressing upon Ukrainians that the stakes are high, motivating them to do some research and consider their opinion carefully?  IMO the longer this drags on, the more likely it becomes that Putin welcomes more of Ukraine into Russia without violence.  Murder and deceit is not the way to win hearts and minds.  If Western powers want to win public support, they might start by making some gestures of good faith, for example by offering up the hired snipers from the Maidan protests...

Independent's picture

You are quite astute and correct Lore, I am a bit more hot under the collar and tend to be a little bit more aggressive in my analysis, I am also a little bombastic with my rants but its for a little fun while still trying to be relevant.  Putin as you indicate may be using the soft approach which is much more desirable.  He certainly did an outstanding job in keeping violence to a minimum on the ground in Crimea.  I have been through Southeastern Europe and spent a little time there learning the culture and people.  I think that Putin is an extremely intelligent man with phenomenal organizational skills and an innate ability to lead.  You are right, the odds are he will wait till the elections, but he may be forced to move in sooner depending on the shennanigans of the West.  He does need to secure Crimea's water, electricty, and gas lines coming out of Kherson in Ukraine. Authorities (oligarchs) in Kiev have been taunting him by cutting power to Crimea down to fifty percent, as talked about here on ZH, almost as if they want to goad him to attack. Its a complicated situation and we are not privy to all that he knows.  Nevertheless I believe your analysis is much more probable than mine.  Good thinking.

Putin does have a background in intelligence and seems to prefer a soft approach but he is more than capable to play rough if the situation calls for it, when the soft approach does not work.  The actions of the west are a little strange, they have seen Putin be assertive in Georgia, yet they did this coup but are not really putting in the effort, such as money to support the economy (they must of known how much money it would take before hand, as we speak IMF just approved 18 billion worth of crap dollars in aid) or providing more military support, they came into the game playing a weak hand and I find that odd, almost as if they are trying to draw Putin into an unpopular takeover of Ukraine that would destablize him at home in Russia.

We all agree that Ukraine is a financial disaster, I am sure the Russians want nothing of it. I still feel that they would move into Eastern Ukraine if there is no agreement on a federal constitution, or if the Ukraine military moves in strongly into the region such that it could seriously impede Russian movements later.  So they will wait and see what the West does as far as military aid.  Still Crimea does need water and electricity, and the Russians are almost done consolidating all of Crimea regarding taking control of all the military installations.  They can now focus on the next task at hand.

Independent's picture

On the most interventional front there will be three objectives.

1 Secure resources, MIC factories, and pro Russian population of East Ukraine

2 Move on Odessa to give Transniester Republic a way out to the Sea and connection with mother Russia kind of like Kaliningrad (this is a separate topic but Russia really wants to bring the rest of Moldova back into the CIS and away from the EU even thought Moldova has a majority Romanian population, they speak Russian as a second language (legacy of communism and being part of Soviet Union)

3 depends on Ukraine actions but a move from Crimea to Kherson located on the Dnieper to secure the water and electricity supplies of Crimea

Lets see what the next couple of weeks brings...

Gavrikon's picture

I hate to keep reminding folks, but the correct name of the country is Prednistrovie, not Transnistria.  That is the Moldovan name for the area, and the people there do not recognize it.

Lore's picture

@ Independent: Thank you for elaborating.  I hope you keep writing.

I once worked for a dangerous kind of control freak, one who was unpredictable, incapable of delegating or entertaining new perspectives, and who reacted violently when things did not go 'his way.'  (The organization finally collapsed, with terrible human cost.)  Wish I wasn't so reminded of that experience.  The debt situation alone speaks volumes about the quality of decisions being made.

MarkAntony's picture

@ Independent

I completely agree with your statement. Putin will move on Ukraine and cut it exactly along the line you describe. It's a smart move for him and I wager it will happen in April-May time frame.

We have a trip planned to Ukraine next month...   Now, I'm not so sure we should go....

kashey's picture

All these weapons will end up in Russian arsenals.
In Crimea half of personell joined Russian army, a quarter left military service and only quarter left Crimea to continue servixe in Ukrainian military.
I'm sure if war starts half of Ukrainian army hides and runs, a quarter will join Russians and a quarter will fight.

Wahooo's picture

Could happen. Putin has those tapes and maybe more bombshell quotes to come. He could roll out the Reggie Love fuckfest tapes one day, and blitz Ukraine the next.

goldinpenguin's picture

Sports adage "take what they give you", keep taking until you come up against real resistance and as long as Ukraine government is passive Vlad will keep taking, probably no real resistance til street to street fighting in Kiev - so Vlad can just sweep around and freeze/starve Kiev into submission.

He may announce joint Ukraine, polish, Lithuanian task force threatens Russia and capture the Baltics to liberate the Russian speaking minorities there. In a couple weeks we could see Vlads Soviet Union Lite in place. Where it gets dicey is when the Russian tanks roll over the NATO bases in the Baltics, maybe eastern Poland too

Buck Johnson's picture

They are amassing that large of a force to push far enough into the Ukraine that as you said to not give them a way to the sea and leave them a landlocked polity that needs continued support from the west (money, resources etc. etc.) which the west doesn't really have. 

Tabarnaque's picture

I don't think that Putin really wants to invade Ukraine. I would rather think that he is preparing the stage for a major shift in the world monetary system. I think he is doing it more as a deterrent against a US led NATO. I sense that something much bigger is in the pipeline. Russia knows that Libya and Iraq were invaded because they tried to move away from the US dollar.


Following the Visa and Master Card sanctions against several Russian Banks, the Russians have announced that their own payment system (Pro 100) will be up and running in 2 months. This time frame is quite possible as most Russian Banks are already using it. This is the emergence and early days of a new BRICS led SWIFT like system. The SWIFT plays a major for the West to control the world financial system. Currently, every single international money transfer has to go through the SWIFT. It is the only available channel. A BRICS led SWIFT based on the Pro 100 Russian system would be an earthquake moment in the history of world monetary finance. Then they are about to announce gas sale deals with China and India and I doubt that it will be done in US dollars.


I feel that the whole thing is coming to a head here and the Western push in Ukraine just accelerated a whole lot of things that were already developing behind the scene. The Western push in Ukraine will prove to have been a terrible mistake for the Anglo-American Banking Cartel.  

Tabarnaque's picture

At the September 2013 G20 meeting, the BRICS made an official statement that the BRICS development bank will be operational within the next 12 months. That means anytime between now and september of this year.

StychoKiller's picture

Time is definitely on Putin's side, especially with no discernible opposing force present in Ukraine.  Someone definitely wrote a check their ass cannot cash!

kito's picture

The Russians have learned well from WW2 overpowering mechanized calvary and artillery does the job, also with overwhelming force it might make the Ukraine military forces just give up instead of fighting did that work against the finns in the winter war?? not too well

how about afghanistan?? also not too well

TahoeBilly2012's picture

Hard to tell a Finn on skis from a birch tree.

Independent's picture

Kito you have good points however Afghanistan is a mountainous terrain and difficult to operate mechanized cavalry, the same with Finland, lots of forests and lakes but still if you check your history once the Russians set their mind to it the Finns folded and lost.

Ukraine is perfect flat and rolling grasslands meant for mechanized warfare.  Kursk by the way is right on the Eastern Border of Ukraine and you know what Great Battle was fought there with Tanks, right?  Do not be fooled, Ukraine is not Finland and its not Afghanistan.  Its more like a greener Iraq.

Againstthelie's picture

They will stop nowhere, because divisions and regiments would be needed for such an operation.

All we see are company-strenght units. Not even whole tank regiments.

Gavrikon's picture

I agree with your assessment.  Odessa is Russian, as well as Prednistrovie.  Russia will have no problems at all in regaining her ex-provinces in eastern Ukraine.  They were Russia, are Russian, and will again be Russia.  I also predict, that the government in western Ukraine will eventually be overthrown by Ukrainian patriots who see the western-backed power and land grab for what it is.

BTW, fuck Obama, Kerry, McCain, Merkel, etc.

Berspankme's picture

I'll bet bathhouse Barry likes it when Reggie excercises a little "brute force" when cornholing said Barry

McMolotov's picture

Now I am as happy as a little girl.

dow jones 20000's picture

Big fan of Interpreter Magazine as of the beginning of the Crimean invasion. While they might not be a "fringe" site they are certainly not mainstream media either, and their analysis is based largely on information from the people on the ground as opposed to Jay Carney's rubber stamped press releases. Their livefeed coverage has been exceptional although at times sporadic. VICE news is also doing some incredible documentary footage of what's going on on the ground.

Independent's picture

Hey Dow I will check out Interpreter but with Vice, I have seen a definite bias in their videos against Russia. Makes sense though the producer of Vice TV is Bill Maher and he is your typical dual citizen.  Like I have said before there is a concerted effort by dual citizens in govt and their buddies who control mass media to do a smear campaign on Russia. Their clan lost a lot of stolen money and future revenues when Putin clawed back controlling stakes in Russia's Oil Industry and used them to make Russia great again.  I am not going to get into the whole Rabbi Ovadia Yosef mentality here but I have made posts on it before and will repeat it when relevant in the future.  The Jewish people quickly circle their wagons even for criminals, to them financial crime appears to be no big deal unless they are on the receiving end like with Madoff.  But if Gentiles get screwed its just another day at the Chabad house.

dtwn's picture

At 0:26 in the third video, those are a couple of 9K22 Tunguskas.

Potent little anti-aircraft weapon systems.  2x 30mm cannons, plus missiles. . . .

Jack Burton's picture

Good catch, I saw those too. Never deploy any forces without their own short range mobile AA systems. Early on in the crisis, S-400's were moved up to the border area by night, they also came with their own mobile medium range protection the TOR M2. This allows Russian movement into Russian East Ukraine under a missile shield. To see how this works, google the 1973 Egypt/Isreal war and the canal crossing and subsequent battles in which Israel's airforce was forced to call off air support after losing many aircraft. It was only after moving outside the missile zone that Egyptian forces took heavy defeats. Lesson, S-400, is capable of inflicting unacceptable losses on any air craft attempting to engage Russian ground forces.

Oh, the early moves of mobile S-400 were all made at night. By day the mobile systems go into hiding, they can move every few minutes if need be, decoys are deployed, and much tracking is done by passive systems that are not active radars. Russia is not Iraq!

sushi's picture

Russia is not Iraq!


And the US has spent the last ten years optimizing its force structure to defeat nations of goat herders.

As for the Russian AA capabilties that is what the F-35 is all about. Just wait for it. Should deploy in 2018.

This is not going to be pretty.

Independent's picture

LOL Jack, nice avatar, I wouldnt mind waking up to her every morning either ;)

kashey's picture

The second video is from Donetsk (so far Ukrainian) region, it is Ukrainian army moving to Russian border.