Over 50 POWs killed. A military accident or a cynical war crime?

British mercenary Aiden Aslin, now a prisoner in the Donetsk People’s Republic, expressed real concern that he may die from the Ukrainian shelling of Donetsk. He has experienced many missile attacks that came close to the prison.
Is he still alive?

Understandably, we are always shocked about the losses of civilian lives during wars. Particularly relevant at the moment in the current war in Ukraine. But I find myself even more shocked by the news which broke last night that over 50 Ukrainian prisoners of war had been killed in a missile attack on their prison barracks prison near the village of Yelenovka in the Donetsk People’s Republic (DPR).

I was confused by my emotional reaction. After all, these prisoners were captured in Mariupol where Ukrainian units were using the civilian population as human shields.  Refugees from the city almost uniformly reported incidents of cruelty, looting, rape and even murder – particularly by the ultranationalist Azov Battalion in that city.

Many people might say they deserved to die. But whatever their alleged crimes they deserved their day in court, and the prisoners were being processed to collect evidence for an upcoming war crime tribunal hearing. Some of the collected testimony has been leaked in videos on social media.

But these prisoners were collected together in (presumably crowded) barracks. With no means of escape. Sitting targets shot like fish in a barrel. This explains the high casualty rate – something like 53 deaths, with 75 injuries (many serious) among 193 prisoners (as of this morning). Several prison guards were also killed. This almost seems worse than other reported cases where a smaller number of innocent civilians have died in similar attacks. And there have been many such attacks in Donetsk.

I guess the lack of freedom to take evasive action is a reason for our general abhorrence of crimes against POWs.

Collateral damage?

This could have been an accident – collateral damage inevitable in war. After all, Donetsk has been shelled continually for 8 years. Many innocent civilians, quite a few of them children, have been killed in what looks like indiscriminate shelling by the Ukrainian military.

The British mercenary Aiden Aslin, who was captured in Mariupol, was also kept in this prison camp. He has a YouTube channel which I watch. Strangely, I have got to like the guy. He makes good points. He seems sorry for his military roles in Syria and Ukraine. I don’t think he deserves the death sentence he has been handed down. I hope his appeal is successful.

But in the video above he describes some of the Ukrainian shelling near the prison and his fear that he may die from such an attack before his death sentence is carried out. Rather an ironic thought as he was fighting for the Ukrainians.

I certainly hope he survived. I understand that the prisoners in the shelled barracks were mainly from the Azov battalion or other Ukrainians who were providing evidence of war crimes. So, he may be safe – he didn’t serve in the Azov battalion and is extremely critical of it. I will keep an eye on his YouTube channel to see if he is and what his experience has been.

A cynical war crime?

I hope this is not the case. The deliberate targeting of one’s own soldiers who have been taken prisoner would be the height of cynicism. However, these prisoners were providing evidence which may have implicated the Ukrainian military or political leadership in war crimes. Indeed, some of the leaked testimony refers to soldiers receiving orders from the leadership on how they should torture or kill prisoners, etc.

Perhaps their political or military leadership decided to remove this evidence, no matter how cynical this seems. And no matter that these prisoners had been presented as heroes in Ukrainian propaganda.

One piece of evidence pointing to this possibility is the apparent use of HIMARS missiles in the attack. In the past Ukrainian missile attacks on Donetsk have not been accurate but the recent acquisition of HIMAR systems from the US has made possible pinpoint attacks which may have been the case here.

Confirmation bias is rife – a proper investigation is necessary

I follow The Military Summary Youtube channel which provided a summary of the attack and the way it was reported in Russia and Ukraine as well as the DPR. He is very objective (one could say to a fault) but at least he provides both sides. Here is his latest summary where he discusses the attack

It seems that the Ukrainian are denying their attack (they usually don’t provide reports of such attacks) and are instead going with the fantastical charge that this was a Russian atrocity. That the Russian killed the prisoners to cover up the evidence of torture.

I have been shocked how, during this war, people have been ready to believe anything to protect the honour of their “own side.” They will invent fantastic stories to explain away unpleasant evidence.

But this incident certainly raises the possibility that a very cynical and massive war crime has been perpetrated. The appropriate bodies should collect evidence and enable a proper investigation of the event.

Surely the victims of this attack are owed this – whatever other own crimes in the past.

 

128 responses to “Over 50 POWs killed. A military accident or a cynical war crime?

  1. What is fantastical is swallowing the Kremlin line that the Ukrainians are somehow guilty of war crimes then concocting some fairy story about the Ukraine targetting it’s own POWs. The mental gymnastics require to believe that sort of rubbish is unfortunately par for the course for Putin’s little on-line helpers who retain a yearning for the USSR. It is astonishing how many people are willing idiots for Russia. Russia is a fascist state rules by brutal dictator that has started a war of imperial aggression. It has a responsibility under the Geneva convention for the proper and safe treatment of POWs. Even if this isn’t simply yet another atrocity committed by a lawless and savage army of criminal desperadoes recruited from prisons and brutalised elements of Putin’s new empire responsibility for housing POWs well away from any danger lies with the captors.

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  2. The attack is extremely unlikely to be by Ukrainians using HIMARS. It is likely to be be from a thermobaric weapon such as a TOS-1A. The reason for this is that there is little blast damage, no obvious crater (a key element of the outcome of a HIMARS strike), and most of the damage was from fire. You can see that from looking at the (Russian supplied) pics of the point of impact.

    The Ukrainians may have used a captured TOS-1A to make the strike it is true but the effective range of the TOS-1A is only a maximum opf 10 KM and as this location was 15 KM from the Ukrainian forward positions it is extremely unlikely (see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TOS-1).

    Also, what purpose would targeting this known POW serve the Ukrainians? They have limited HIMARS ammunition so it would have to be a very good reason to do that rather than target ammunition dumps or command and control sites that they have been doing so far.

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  3. Also the fact that the prisoners were being kept in a facility only 15 km away from the front line is also a breach of Article 19 of the Geneva convention which states the following:

    “ART. 19. — Prisoners of war shall be evacuated, as soon as
    possible after their capture, to camps situated in an area far enough
    from the combat zone for them to be out of danger.
    Only those prisoners of war who, owing to wounds or sickness,
    would run greater risks by being evacuated than by remaining
    where they are, may be temporarily kept back in a danger zone.
    Prisoners of war shall not be unnecessarily exposed to danger
    while awaiting evacuation from a fighting zone.”

    So even if the Ukrainians DID target these prisoners deliberately (which I pointed out is highly improbable) The Russian military is partially responsible by keeping them in a location that was not safe.

    Click to access Doc.32_GC-III-EN.pdf

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  4. The Red Cross is being denied access to this camp.

    “ICRC Ukraine
    @ICRC_ua
    To be clear, our request to access the POWs from Olenivka penal facility yesterday has not been granted.

    Granting ICRC access to POWs is an obligation of parties to conflict under the Geneva Conventions.”

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  5. Sanctuary – who do refer to with your claim that someone is guilty of war crimes? If you read my article, I clearly prefer collateral damage as the cause and specifically say of the intentional missile attack scenario – “I hope this is not the case. The deliberate targeting of one’s own soldiers who have been taken prisoner would be the height of cynicism.

    However, I see from the rest of your comment that you are not interested in evidence or reason, or the proper investigation of this attack. So you are not going to listen to me, are you?

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  6. There is no evidence this is collateral damage. There was nothing of military significance at the site. The building that was hit was only used for housing POW’s (who look to have been moved there quite recently from the rest of the POW camp). No other parts of the camp were hit.

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  7. Why are my comments not appearing here Ken? You stated they should appear automatically.

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  8. There are a lot of images and clearly there was a blast as well as a fire. A few of the POW bodies were charred. Can’t find the videos at the moment – some have them have been deleted because of the dead bodies, I think.

    prison

    As I said in my article, I favour the collateral damage scenario – Ukraine has been shelling Donetsk for 8 years (14,000 killed more than a million refugees) and Aiden Aslin confirms shelling near the prison during his time here (listen to his video above). Such shelling has also been reported in news channels. Independent journalists in the area confirm the arbitrary targeting of non-military areas in this shelling. Patrick Lancaster in one of his videos reported shelling near this prison some time ago.

    However, if one wishes to promote a war crime scenario there is plenty of motivation for a targeted Ukrainian attack. The prisoners were providing evidence which, together with them and civilian witnesses, is to be presented at Mariupol Tribunal which I understand is scheduled for September at this stage. Some of the leaked testimony suggested that war crimes such as torture and killing of prisoners and civilians were carried out by the Azov soldiers. The issue is very sensitive for Kiev because this testimony alleged political and military leaders in Kiev gave orders for these actions. It could be that the leadership in Kiev ordered these murders to remove such testimony. However there were quite a few survivors, many currently in hospital. They may still be able to testify, and their experiences will be useful for the UN and ICRC investigators.

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  9. I said nothing of the sort. I only need to approve first-time comments which I do as soon as I see them – the rest is up to the internet.

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  10. Grae O'Sullivan

    HIMARS are highly accurate (hence why they have been able to take out the bridges across the Dnieper river near Kherson). You do not get collateral damage from them unless they malfunction or they were aiming for something extremely close by. Thewre is nothing close by where these POW’s were being kept. Nothing else was hit. The only damage was the building that the POW’s were housed in and no Russian military personbel or their allies were even injured.

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  11. Yes, there is, as far as I understand, no nearby military targets. But shelling of the area at least close to the prison has been going on for some time -= probably random or indiscriminate shelling. Many local residents have lost their houses. Patrick Lancaster has reported from the area using video.

    If true that no other parts of the camp were hit this does not look good for Kiev as it suggests the use of the high precision HIMAR missiles, (with the possible help of the US for targeting). Photographs are circulating of missile debris from the attack site with the claim these indicate a HIMAR missile was used.

    But shelling in the areas has been reported in recent days. Also, Kiev has generally used a mass attack using less accurate missiles together with the HUIMARS to saturate anti-missile defence systems and thus protect the more accurate HIMAR missile.

    At this stage I am not aware of aaaaaaaaaaaaaany other missle incoming in this area at 2 am that morning, but there may have been.

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  12. That pic you posted is actually of a Russian Military strike on Odessa NOT on the POW camp.

    You can see the same building at the top centre of your pic in one of the images associated with this news report here

    https://www.1news.co.nz/2022/07/27/russia-airstrikes-target-ukraine-villages-along-black-sea/

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  13. Yes, sorry. There are so many to choose from. What I wanted to find was the edited video. I will try to replace that soon.

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  14. This is the image of the building that was hiot. Note that there is not the destruction that you saw in the pic you posted. There is very little blast damage and that there is a lot of scorch marks around the windows indicating a fire not a blast caused much of the damage inside.

    https://www.npr.org/2022/07/30/1114691075/russia-ukraine-deadly-attack-prison

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  15. Artillery fire would not be as precise to hit a single building nor would it cause fire damage but not much blast damage. Thermobaric weapons cause that sort of damage.

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  16. What I find interesting Ken is you claim to take a scientific approach and ONLY focus on the evidence yet I’ve presented a scientific analysis and you instead try to counter with mere speculation and opinion. You don’t address the scientific elements such a lack of blast damage, no crater, no shrapnel inside the building, and a lot of scorch marks from fire damage both inside the building and on the windows. These are all consistent with the use of a Thermobaric NOT blast weapon and therefore do not point to the use of HIMARS.

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  17. Yes – one of the images. Eva Bartlett, an independent journalist reporting from Donetsk has visited the site (she may have taken the photo you used and gives this report together with photos:
    “Pretty horrific scenes today at the detention center near the village of Yelenovka which Ukraine bombed late last night with American HIMARS. Press Secretary of the DPR Military Command, Eduard Basurin, said there are a confirmed 53 Ukrainian POWs dead, 71 injured.

    The stench of death was everywhere. Burnt corpses, bodies cause of death shrapnel…blood splatters everywhere

    Ukraine did this, intentionally, to its own people, its own soldiers, soldiers who had surrendered and, as Basurin pointed out, were confessing their crimes against Donbass civilians, their murdering of Donbass civilians, which came from commanders’ orders, which came from Kiev.

    HIMARS are a powerful multiple launch rocket system with GPS navigation. It is indisputable, except in lying Western media, that Ukraine intentionally killed its own soldiers using Western weapons.”

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  18. As would a HIMAR missile. The photographed missile debris is claimed to be from a HIMAR and typical of such. This is the sort of evidence the investigative committees will be checking.
    I am not claiming precision – as I said I prefer the collateral damage scenario. If you want to claim precision then you should go with the HIMAR and this raises the issue of a war crime.

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  19. Your own images show the majority of the destruction was from fire not from a blast. A missile from a HIMAR system does not burn people Ken. That is a Thermobaric weapon. A Blast weapon causes bodies to be ripped apart and thrown about and walls to be destroyed. The blast radiates OUT from the point of impact which means aside from the point of entry the rest of the roof should be blown AWAY from the building. That missile debris does not suggest it is a HIMAR missile.

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  20. Do you see the dead bodies in the bunks? They are burnt to a crisp. They shouldn’t even be in their bunks if this was a result of a blast. They should be blown out and scattered around the walls. You haven’t addressed that.

    All you are doing is what you are accusing me of which is Gish galloping by posting multiple Russian sources and expecting me to counter each one is turn despite none of them actually answering my points about the fact this is likely caused by a Thermobaric rather than Blast weapon.

    I thought you claimed you wanted to address the actual subject in a scientific manner. I would like to see you do so from now on.

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  21. You simply do not know what evidence is, or the difference between opinion, informed opinion and actual facts.
    You definitely have not presented a “scientific analysis”. You have presented an opinion based on Twitter reports from mostly Ukrainian propagandists (and, yes, I have seen them too). You use all their arguments – that is confirmation bias, not scientific analysis. You have selected the reports that fit your prejudices.
    You have chosen only one of the scenarios presented by Ukrainian “intelligence” – the thermobaric weapon.
    The Ukrainians have presented a number of scenarios:
    1: Explosion from a planted bomb (claiming there was no missile whistle sound according to their witnesses – apparently Ukrainian “intelligence” had people on the ground at 2 am to make that report).
    2: An attack by the Wagner groups aimed at covering up corruptions, the stealing of money used for prisoner’s upkeep.
    3: A missile attack by “Russians” to hide evidence of torture of the POWs. They don’t explain how the surviving POW don’t show any torture. Nor will that explain the testimony of the survivors about the attack.
    There seem to be other variations. But clearly they are used for propaganda and disinformation purposes and not based on fact. The promotion of multiple scenarios is telling. They are not scientific analyses, and neither is your summary of them.

    As a scientist used to basing my reports on collected evidence I cannot offer a scientific analysis in this case – I simply have not facts, I cannot do the required checking or subject ideas to any experimental testing. I might draw an opinion based on videos and photographs presented on Twitter – but that is only an opinion. Of course I can make judgments on the reliability of the information presented, etc. My opinion may be “informed” to that extent. The scientific analyses will come from the experts who examine the site, the missile remains, the condition of the bodies and survivors and hear the testimony of the survivors and the guards. There may even be missile serial numbers among the debris as there were with the Kramatorsk railway station attack and the MH17 tragedy. That would be helpful to determine the culprits.

    I can only present a limited opinion, informed only to the extent of my reading and understanding. That is why I the favour collateral damage scenario. I do not have any evidence to label it a war crime but accept there are very strong motives for such. I don’t want to state that scenario as factual as that will make a judgment about motive that I do not have the facts to back up. That may well change, though.

    In the case of the 2014 Odessa massacre I did form the opinion this was the equivalent of a war crime. I watched the video evidence at the time of the burning of the trade union building and the shooting of people trying to escape the building. The video evidence was very helpful in that case.

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  22. Having seen the limited and localized effects of the HIMAR blasts on the bridges I can understand that these missiles, unlike the larger ones, don’t necessarily cause wide blast damage. Don’t forget that images have been taken some time after the attack at 2AM. A lot of work had been done to collect corpses, recover the injured and clear debris.

    I have not presented multiple “Russian sources here” – simply Eva Bartlett’s report – she is a very capable journalist. I suspect Patrick Lancaster may also produce video evidence, although I understand he is in northern Donbass at the moment – I have seen some of his recent videos.

    The problem with official Russian reports is that there are never many of them. They are formal and stick with data – for example, the names of the victims and injured. In the end, people reporting on the war (Like the Military Summary Channel) tend to treat the official Russian reports as probably reliable but usually urge people to wait a few days for video and photograph confirmations. They tend to dismiss the equivalent Ukrainian reports as unreliable because they are often so wrong and very fanciful. The wise observer should critically assess information from each side and always look for confirmation.

    I never rely on either Russian or Ukrainian official reports them – I get more information from on-the-ground journals, war correspondents, etc. The chatter from citizens of the LPR and DPR can be informative. However, I understand that at this current stage of the war when the huge critical battle in the Ukrainian-occupied part of Donetsk Oblast is about to take place the Russians are clamping down on loose tongues and probably urging the DPR and LPR to do the same.

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  23. Incidentally, thermobaric weapons are also capable of big blasts which will destroy property. So be careful of submitting to wishful thinking.

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  24. As a scientist you should be able to identify if the facts are consistent with a potential hypothesis. In this case is the damage to the building in keeping with the blast impacts of a HIMARS missile strike. You keep prevaricating on that issue. Blast imapcts do not burn people to death. Also what is included in the construction of this building that would lead to greater fire damage because it is in an area of the World which is cold in Winter (Which it is not in Ukraine at the moment)?

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  25. My “hypothesis,” really only a careful opinion in at this stage, is that this is collateral damage. Of course the photos and danage are consistent with a HIMAR missile, or many other missiles. Even in NZ we have flamible insulation (saw my neighbours house catch fire in the roof recently) and even prisons wlll have insulation in that part of world.

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  26. Those wishing to promote a war crimes scenario as a hypothesis should consider motives- important for a war crime but not for collateral damage.
    Consider the value of the POWs. As Azov members they are most likely to have committed crimes in Mariupol. Civilian evacuees have already presented evidence but the testimony of these POWs in important and some of them will clearly face criminal conviction and punishment. Some have posted videos of their crimes on the internet, but testimony about who ordered the crimes is also important.
    The Mariupol Tribunal is planned for some time after September in Mariupol.
    So, these prisoners are extremely valuable to both the DPR and the Russians.

    These prisoners are also very valuable to Ukraine and to some extent NATO. Ukraine has made heroes of the Azovstahl fighters. Called their surrender and capture a “glorious evacuation,” awarded medals etc. NATO countries have since February stopped denouncing the Azov Battalion as neo-Nazis and has also presented these fighters as heroes. While previously being reticent about their arms falling into neo-Nazi hands, they no longer make restrictions.
    In negotiations over POW exchanges the Ukrainians have given preference to Azov soldiers and the Russians and their allies seem to have been willing to exchange them. This has annoyed many Russians who feel that captured no-Nazis should not be exchanged and should be made to pay for their crimes. (I would assume the Russians would only release POWs that they have cleared of such crimes). It has also angered Ukrainians who feel the more numerous non-Azov POW should get precedence in exchanges.
    There are probably extra reasons why the Ukrainians place such high value on the Azov fighters (the power of ultranationalists in the state structure, the effectiveness of the nationalist units compared with routine soldiers, etc).
    So, at first sight, both sides in this war place a high value on these POWs and should not have a motive for cynically killing them in this manner. Especially as the manner of the attack mean more than half survived to give evidence.
    The minor motives that have been argued:

    1: The allies wanted to cover up evidence of torture. Where is that evidence? These POW are regularly contacted by the ICRC and their conditions are checked. (If anything, there is a problem that the ICRC has not responded to all the requests from the allies and have not done their job properly. See my article about the experience of one woman attempting to locate her POW husband – she had to travel to Donetsk where the local authorities found her husband for her. The Ukrainian and ICRC authorities would not help – A heart-warming story about a Ukrainian prisoner of war.
    2: The Ukrainians want to kill these POWs because they would evidence which would discredit the political and military leadership in Kiev. Again, less than half the POWs were eliminated. This evidence will still be given. A missile attack was not a very efficient way of eliminating the problem. And the fact is that the Mariupol tribunal will be actively demonised in Ukraine and the west. Its findings will be effectively suppressed. We have seen this method of information management in a media for a long time. There is no reason for such an attack.
    3: The Wagner group wanted to remove evidence of corruption. Same arguments apply. There are far more efficient ways of covering up corruptions and both the Russians and Ukrainians have vast experience in this area.
    4: The Russians want to make the Ukrainians look bad. Come on – the Ukrainians are doing an excellent job of this themselves. One just has to listen to the testimony of the people from Mariupol and the liberated areas of Donbass.
    These are the main motives suggested. All the others seems as farcical as number 4 above.

    The whole areas provide plenty of scope for confirmation bias, for hatred of Russians (the last acceptable racism) and nerdy games. But they in no way are evidence.

    The most reasonable provisional judgement at this stage is that is one of the many instances of collateral ag in this war. The high casually rate is explained by the fact of the POW concentration in a single place.

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  27. Let’s analyse your claims of taking a scientific approach.

    There are multiple possible hypotheses to explain what happened in Ukraine with the Azov POW’s.

    – The event never happened and has been invented
    – There was an accident in the barracks which killed the POW’s
    – There was an attack by Ukrainian artillery or missile that went off target and the POW’s were collateral damage
    – The POW’s were deliberately targeted by a Ukrainian artillery or missile strike.
    – A Russian artillery or missile strike went off target and the POW’s were collateral damage.
    – A Russian artillery or missile strike deliberately targeted the POW’s.
    – The Russian’s deliberately burnt the barracks with the POW’s in them and made it look like an artillery or missile strike.

    Of these possible explanation you have only accepting two possible alternatives which is the POW were either deliberately or accidentally targeted by Ukrainian artillery or missiles. There has been ZERO attempt to look at any other option and you have seemingly ruled out the possibility of Russians being the cause of this simply because they arranged for the cease fire, provided green corridors, provided medical assistance in the past which ignores the fact that the Ukrainians ALSO were party to those things which would make little sense if they wanted the soldiers all dead.

    You also rely on information from a source who makes a statement that it is indisputable to all but the lying Western media that the Ukrainians intentionally killed their own soldiers using Western weapons despite you yourself being in dispute with her view.

    You seem to discount any information on the subject from the Ukrainian side or from sources that disputes your preconceived viewpoint and blindly accept the Russian take and do not even look at the possibility that there are other possible explanations.

    How is your approach to this in any way scientific?

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  28. Your comment about thermobaric weapons also being incapable of creating big blasts is an irrelevant red herring. It may well be the case but as the issue is that there was not a lot of blast damage nor noticeable impact crater the more scientific question should have been are GMLRS munitions which HIMARS fire capable of producing more fire than blast damage. As that is YOUR assertion it is beholden on you to produce the evidence for that following scientific principles around burden of proof.

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  29. Sorry – should read capable not incapable

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  30. What fammable insulation was present in the building the POW’s were in that was hit ? There is nothing to suggest there was material in the ceilings and the walls do not show anything either. The fire looks like it was on the inside not outside of the room. Again though you made a claim so the burden of proof is on you to show the material you think contributed to the massive fire that burnt many of the POW’s to a crisp.

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  31. My approach is not “scientific” – I have never claimed it is. I understand how science works and all that one can do in this situation is form an opinion based on what unverified information is presented on the internet. I do not have access to the real evidence, I have no way of properly verifying it, and I cannot carry out a scientific investigation. I should add that confirmation bias will be very actively for the internet “scientists” claiming to do a proper analysis at this stage.

    Unfortunately, I think neither the UN nor ICRC inspectors will have the skills for proper scientific investigations and there are problems of geopolitical influence as we saw with the ICPW reports on Syria. The job of the UN and ICRC will be to inspect the condition of the POWs.

    Personally, I think we will get the best scientific assessment from the professional investigators currently in Ukraine that are investigating claims of war crimes going back to 2014. They are actively working on this and will deliver reports. (Unfortunately for some biased people, I don’t think they will seriously investigate this incident as a Russian war crime).

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  32. Don’t misrepresent me yet again. I do not rely on Eva Bartlett’s reportage (I am fully aware that everyone has their prejudices and have followed her long enough to know some of hers). I always advocate one should treat media reports critically and intelligently – whatever the source. What I did was present her photos as an independent report actually on-the-ground.

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  33. I note you have now decided to take the “I don’t know what happened really so let’s leave it up to the investigators” approach which is a departure from your initial take that there was really only two explanations for it as either being collateral damage from a Ukrainian strike meant for somewhere else or a deliberate targeting of the POW’s to keep them quiet. I suspect this is because you realise you can’t really justify that any longer in the face of my argument. I commend your retreat from the argument although I would prefer you change your blog post to reflect the reality that the possible war crime could be from the Russian and not just the Ukrainian side.

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  34. BTW you didn’t just present her photo’s (which would have been fine by me. You actually QUOTED her.You did not need to quote her and in fact it would have been better if you didn’t as it took away from the analysis of the photos and added NOTHING to this discussion.

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  35. For what it is worth this is what one of Russian blogger (Conflict Intelligence Team) makes of this attack at this stage:

    “Yelenovka : there is still no absolutely reliable version of exactly what happened there.

    We do not believe in the version of an explosion from within: it is impossible to carry something and hang it on a crane beam so that no one out of 200 people wakes up; also the survivors say that they first heard one arrival in the distance and lay down.
    We also doubt the version with thermobaric ammunition through the windows. Yes, we do not see a large crater, but some walls are covered with mini-craters from shell fragments, ie it can be seen that it was a high-explosive fragmentation projectile, and not a thermobaric weapon. Also, most windows have bars or at least frames, the thermobaric munition would detonate from the window and we would see the center of the explosion there.
    In the version with the Solntsepek heavy flamethrower system, it’s hard for us to imagine that the Russian military could hit so carefully and accurately without hitting any adjacent building.
    We agree that this is clearly not HIMARS. It makes no sense to shoot the GMLRS from such a short distance, plus there would be more destruction inside (and the debris that we are shown on the bench could have been brought from anywhere).
    The version that it was the Ukrainian side who deliberately killed their own seems to us an incredible conspiracy theory.
    The option that the Ukrainian forces fired at the military positions of the pro-Russian separatists, but accidentally hit this hangar, is also untenable. It has long been well known that in Yelenovka there was a colony of prisoners of war.

    Separately, it is worth noting that by placing prisoners of war so close to the front line (10-15 km), Russia violates international humanitarian law ( the Geneva Convention on Prisoners of War ).
    We hope that experts from the UN and the International Red Cross will be able to view the scene and conduct an investigation. On July 30, representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross in Ukraine failed to get into the colony in Yelenovka.”

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  36. Shock, Horror. Do you react this way when you see mainstream media reports about this conflict? About Russia? About Putin.

    Come on. As an adult, you should be able to separate aspects of a report which are biased opinions from the evidence and facts presented in the report. Hell, I must do that all the time.

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  37. There was ZERO added value for you top add her comments which you would have had to copy and paste in. The only reason I can see that you would have done that is that you actually think it helps frame the possible explanation for what happened. Why did you decide to quote her rather than just post the pics?

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  38. I note your latest link at least acknowledges that it is not a HIMARS dired weapon.

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  39. Don’t be silly. One could say most of your comments have zero value but I don’t exclude them.

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  40. You don’t quote me though. Quoting implies a level of agreement unless you are directly trying to counter which you weren’t.

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  41. As for my comments having zero value. I’ve got you to acknowledge by you posting of the Russian internet investigators (Conflict Intelligence Team) views that it is extremely unlikely the attack was carried out by a missile fired by a HIMARS.

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  42. Nothing of the sort. I have never claimed a specific missile was used – only that claims for a HIMAR had been made. I simply referred to the reports of “the apparent use” of a HIMAR. I think if this is a war crime the HIMAR would provide the accuracy evident. It is possible the debris will be used to identify what particular missile what used (and with luck a serial number may be found).

    The Russian blogger’s moments were weak relying on the argument that the range wasn’t required.

    A blogger can use any name they wish like “Investigator.” That name choice may fool the naive, and particular those wishing to confirm a bias, but it means nothing.

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  43. No, it doesn’t – you are being silly.

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  44. The Russian blogger’did not rely on the argument that the range wasn’t required so therefore it is improbably a HIMARS fired munition was used. He stated that there was not much blast damage and in essence confirmed the point I made to you.

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  45. They did actually say “It makes no sense to shoot the GMLRS from such a short distance.” Of course, if the accuracy was required, it was urgent (some of the testimony of the involvement of political leadership in Kiev has surfaced) it would make sense because of the accuracy.

    But, remember I am not one who is promoting the war crime scenario – you are.

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  46. This is another Russian commenter’s account for what it is worth. This from Rybar – which has a very high reputation for its reports of the military actions and is used by all the summary sites offering credible progress reports. Of course, this does not mean Rybar has credibility in analysing a specific missile strike.

    “Who and why struck the Volnovakha penal colony in Yelenovka – Rybar’s analysis

    Yesterday, all the world news broadcast footage of the destroyed barracks where Ukrainian prisoners of war were kept: on the night of July 28-29, an artillery strike was carried out at the place where the prisoners were kept. The incident took place east of the village of Yelenovka in the Volnovakha penal colony No. 120. As a result of the incident, 50 servicemen of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were killed (https://t.me/boris_rozhin/58816), 75 were injured.

    Our team has analyzed information from open sources and presents our analysis to your attention.

    🔻Where did the blow come from?

    The blow was inflicted on an extension located in the northern part of the Volnovakha correctional colony No. 120. Given the limited number of places in the correctional institutions of the LDNR and the total number of prisoners of war over 10 thousand people, the colony is used at full capacity. All possible spaces are filled.

    Extension coordinates: 47.8285224941822, 37.71083412073798

    Analysis from the scene confirms that the eastern part of the building suffered the most damage, where a powerful fire and explosion occurred that blew out the windows. However, the place of impact is the same: a breach in the roof near the ridge.

    The direction of the roof breach and the source of fire directly indicate an attack from the north-western direction: the shooting was carried out from the trajectory of Marinka – Kurakhovo – the triangle Sergeevka – Pokrovsk – Udachnoe.

    We can neither confirm nor deny the version about the use of the American MLRS HIMARS: given the frequency of the use of “chimeras”, it is not a problem to collect fragments. The media noise around the American MLRS is intended, first of all, to show the whole world the real price of the supply of foreign weapons to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

    ❗️But we have no reason to doubt that the blow to the Volnovakha correctional colony was inflicted precisely by a rocket from the Ukrainian formations.

    In our infographic (https://i.ibb.co/y6kV3Cy/1.jpg), we indicated a distance of 70 km, corresponding to the maximum firing range of the GMLRS M30 ammunition from the HIMARS MLRS. But in fact, a blow could have been delivered from any MLRS.

    🔻Why is the strike beneficial for Ukraine?

    Chronology of events:
    ▪️The soldiers of the Azov National Regiment who surrendered were taken (https://t.me/milchronicles/530) to the Volnovakha Correctional Colony No. 120 on May 20. As of February 24, the territory of the complex was completely empty, according to (https://t.me/kyivoperativ/98367) Mariupol Mayor’s adviser Petr Andryushchenko. Only Ukrainian prisoners of war could be kept on the territory.

    ▪️As early as June 5, it became known (https://t.me/russica2/46486) about the plans of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, at the behest of British curators, to strike at the colony in Yelenovka.

    ▪️On June 20, it was already reported (https://t.me/kremlinprachka/19615) about regular shelling of the colony: Ukrainian formations regularly fired aimed at the territory of the complex.

    ▪️On June 27, we reported (https://t.me/rybar/34462) that the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine is putting pressure on Deputy Prime Minister Irina Vereshchuk and demanding that the military personnel of the Azov National Regiment be included in the exchange lists, counting on the maximum media promotion of cases on return from captivity.

    ▪️On June 29 (https://t.me/rybar/34623) the largest exchange of prisoners of war was carried out according to the formula 144 for 144. 43 servicemen of the Azov National Regiment returned to Ukraine. The fact of the return of the “Azov”, inconsistency in decision-making, as well as unfulfilled promises caused a storm of indignation on the territory of Russia.

    ▪️Most likely, the reaction of the Russian society greatly complicated the process of returning the “Azov” and, possibly, ruled out the possibility of their exchange. It was no longer possible to carry out the extraction procedure, and the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine began to work out alternative scenarios.

    ▪️On July 28 (https://t.me/RtrDonetsk/7956) a video confession in the crimes of one of the “Azovites” Dmitry Kozatsky was published. Everyone understood perfectly well that sooner or later such testimony would appear from his comrades. And the reputational success of the Azov National Regiment as a symbol of the Ukrainian nation will be nullified.

    On the night of July 28-29, the Armed Forces of Ukraine struck at the Volnovakha correctional colony No. 120, once and for all closing the issue of the extraction procedure”

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  47. Looks like the ICRC has refused to take part in the investigation of this possible war crime. Probably understandable – it’s not their job.

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  48. This is another report from Eva Bartlett. I should note that the Ukrainians and some western media are claiming that these anti-personal mines in Donetsk were rained down from a Russian missile. Where have I heard such nonsense before?
    “Ukraine turns Donetsk into a minefield using banned ‘butterfly’ mines
    2 Aug 2022 The use of PFM-1 ‘butterfly’ mines against civilians is prohibited by the Geneva conventions – but this evidently isn’t stopping Ukraine

    Saturday night, just after 9 pm, thunderous explosions rocked central Donetsk. Shortly after, there were announcements that air defense had shot down Ukrainian-fired missiles containing “Butterfly” (or “Petal”) mines.

    Given that over 300 of these mines are packed into each of the Ukrainian-fired rockets, central Donetsk would literally be a minefield.

    While Ukraine has been using these mines on the Donbass for many months, in recent days they have intensely bombarded Gorlovka and Donetsk neighbourhoods with them. Initially targeted were the hard-hit districts of Kievskiy in the north, Kirovsky in the southwest, and Kuibyshevkiy in the west.

    But as of Saturday night, Ukraine hammered central Donetsk with them. And now, walking in the city centre is a nightmare, one I had to endure to document how widespread these mines are here: in central streets and walkways, near apartments, in parks…

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  49. Talk about Gish galloping. The discussion is about the attack on the POW camp NOT on supposed Ukrainian mining operations in Donetsk. Keep to the topic Ken.

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  50. “But, remember I am not one who is promoting the war crime scenario…”

    Ummm…. yes you are. This blog post is titled “Over 50 POWs killed. A military accident or a cynical war crime?” in which you offer up only TWO possible options out of the many (which I listed for you).

    You have taken a position that the attack was carried out by Ukraine hence you continually posting comments and links from Russian supporting sources stating so (by the way where is the balance in your reporting because you do not seem to look at ANY that are pro-Ukrainian?). You even state that while you hope it was a tragic accident the very fact that it was so precise and no other parts of the POW camp were hit this does raise concerns for you. You have essentially stated it was a deliberate strike by the Ukrainians but given yourself wiggle room to argue you are being “impartial”.

    I find it laughable that ALL of the things that you accuse the Western media of in terms of ignoring contrary evidence and only presenting a narrative that is anti-Russian and pro-Ukraine (which has a degree of truth behind it) you are guilty of but in the opposite direction. Then you have the nerve to argue your position is considered and based on scientific reasoning when the reality is you are at least as biased for the Russian side. In short you are pro-Russian. Just own it. Some people are pro-Western and some pro-Russian. It isn’t a crime to be so.

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  51. I think Eva Bartlett’s report is very relevant.
    1: you have attacked this Canadian reporter claiming she is Russian.
    2: Eva is reporting from Donetsk. One of the few English language reporters in the area.
    3: She has been placed on Kiev’s kill list for her reporting.
    She is reporting the results if continual, apparently random, Ukrainuan attacks on civilians areas – similar to that on the nearby prison.
    4: Her reporting is very relevant. As is that if Geaha6m Phillips, sanctioned by his own government for his reporting, and Patrick Lancaster, an American who has been reporting from Donetsk since 2014.
    5: All these very informative journalists are ignored by our media. They are also all on Kiev’s kill list.
    6: Finally, you are promoting g a “Russia did it” war crime scenario for the murder of the POWs. That simply taps in to the same “Russia did it” war crime scenarios Kiev promote every time they commit their oine war crimes.

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  52. I actually do look at a range of sources including Ukrainian – for Instance, I follow Zelensky and several members of his team – have done for a long time. I follow the remnants of the Azov Twitter feed. And if you look at my article How is the war going? I recommend several sites, a couple of them very or blatantly pro-Ukrainian. If you wonder why I rarely use Ukrainian sources – this is because they are mostly demonstratable unreliable. For example, most of them claim Ukraine is winning the war – that should tell you something!

    However, you obviously rely on Ukrainian sources. I recognize the arguments you use as virtually copy-pasted from some I follow.

    Can your recommend to me the Ukrainian sources you follow, that you believe are reliable and worth following?

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  53. You claim I am “continually posting comments and links from Russian supporting sources” stating that Ukraine carried out the attack. Please list the sources you refer to.

    The US state department also acknowledged this as a Ukrainian attack (perhaps they are a Russian supporting source) – except the state Ukraine would not purposely kill the POWs. A bit like my position of collateral damage. I find the idea of deliberate killing of the POWs reprehensible. Then again, I found the Odessa massacre reprehensible too and saw it happen on live video.

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  54. Please link to the US State Department officially claiming this was likely a Ukrainian attack.

    As for your Pro-Russian sources:

    – Video report from Patrick Lancaster
    (https://www.vice.com/en/article/wxneb4/ukraine-patrick-lancaster-journalist details how he is pro-Russian)
    – Pics and quote from report from Eva Bartlett
    (https://www.nbcnews.com/tech/tech-news/russian-propaganda-efforts-aided-kremlin-content-creators-research-fin-rcna32343 details how she is pro-Russian)
    – Analysis and links from Rybar Telegraphaccount
    (https://www.atlanticcouncil.org/blogs/new-atlanticist/russian-war-report-pro-kremlin-telegram-channels-twist-iaea-words/ details how this is is pro-Russian site)

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  55. Patrick is American but lives in Donetsk. His videos show locals in the liberated areas giving their views of Russia and Ukraine. Many of them are anti-Russian and pro-Ukrainian. He attempts to convey the truth which you don’t get from journalists in New York or Kiev on this issue. In common with similar English-speaking journalists in the area (Graham, Phillips for example) Patrick also does humanitarian work taking food and medicine to people he interviews (many who have suffered the very recent loss of family members (bodys still on the ground) from indiscriminate Ukrainian shelling of civilian areas.

    Evan Bartlett is Canadian, currently reporting from the Donbas area. On the ground reporting again.

    The Rybar comments and other Russian blog comments I quoted because they, to some extent, accord with your views. I actually don’t follow them because they post in Russian. I should because translation is easy.

    What you are objecting to is my citing anyone who is presenting the truth (as they see it on the ground). You see this as “pro-Russian.” That suggested to you that I should only cite or quote reports from people who are well-known ad anti- Russian. But see how difficult this is when you will end up describing the US State Department as pro-Russian.

    How about the Ukrainian source you recommend?

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  56. Why can’t you just accept that both Lancaster and Bartlett are reporting from a pro-Russian perspective? There isnothing wrong with that. All journalists have bias. It doesn’t mean you can’t get useful information from them but you just need to be aware. You seem to think there is some sort of ideal unbiased take on the topic. That is not the case.

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  57. I’m still waiting for your link which shows the State department claiming the attack originated from the Ukrainians.

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  58. It’s around somewhere. Perhaps you can look for it I do not have the time.

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  59. “It doesn’t mean you can’t get useful information from them, but you just need to be aware.” That is always my approach to all media. But I don’t accept the argument that information presented by people on the ground should be rejected because you describe them as “pro-Russian.” That is bias. There is just so much rubbish reported about this war from Kiev, London, Washington, New York etc. I can find some sensible stuff from such sources but most of it is rubbish.

    Do you reject anything from a source that is obviously anti-Russian? Do you? What about my request for your Ukrainian sources you trust?

    I have never claimed there is an unbiased source – I have always advocated critical and intelligent processing of information for all news media.

    The advantage of Eva Bartlett, Patrick Lancaster, and Graham Phillips. Alina Lipp, etc.. is that that are actually on the ground. They see the missile attacks. They visit the maternity hospitals that are targeted. they visit the homes of people whose relatives are gilled.

    This raises the question of censorship. Why have people here been so docile about censorship? Doi they like being fooled.

    And why are people ignoring the fact that independent journalists like Graham Phillips are sanctioned by their own country? That his bank account and property has effectively been stolen by the UK government? Or the stealing of money from the accounts of Alina Lipp by her government – simply because she reported from Donetsk? And why is she facing 3 years imprisonment in Germany if she returned home because of that reporting?

    These are things we should all be concerned about – but so much silence. You are concerned because these people don’t irrationally condemn Russia in the way you would like. That is pathetic.

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  60. I get my information from multiple sources both pro-Ukrainian, pro-Russian, and some who qualify as more neutral. Unlike you I don’t think that because someone is “on the ground” it means they will have a better take than someone who is more removed from where the action is happening. I have seen Ukrainian people at the front line make outrageous claims as I see Eva Bartlett has made in relation to the attack on the POW camp. Equally a Russian milblogger can be incredibly useful at giving a perspective of how the operation is going even though they aren’t on the ground.

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  61. I am concerned with those people you listed because they irrationally condemn Ukraine without much thought. Eva Bartlett’s take on the attack is a prime example of that. You should be concerned about how she frames her reporting.

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  62. If you can’t be arsed to back up your own claims with evidence that is your choice. Don’t expect me to do your leg work for you. I suggest you don’t continue making the claim though if you don’t have the time because
    I will continue to request you back it up with evidence if you do.

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  63. It’s not a claim of mine – it’s an observation. I will only take the effort to hunt it down if I write about It. Its not important.

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  64. How so? I am used to seeing all sorts of nonsense and biased framing in our media. You seem upset because she doesn’t reflect your bias. Get used to it. There are a lot if views in this world. The shocking thing is that the honest on the ground reporting like hers is censored and the stupid stuff is promoted.
    And isn’t it shocking that honest reporters have their property stolen by the state and threatened with imprisonment for their reporting. Even more shocking that no one here worries about this censorship.

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  65. Are you not concerned by this statement from Eva Bartlett?

    “It is indisputable, except in lying Western media, that Ukraine intentionally killed its own soldiers using Western weapons.”

    You dispute that as you have postulated that it is probably collateral damage from a Ukrainian missile intended for somewhere else. This would suggest she would regard YOU as lying Western media.

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  66. When you make a statement that the State department has made a comment about something that is a claim not an observation. It becomes an observation only if you link to the original statement.

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  67. No, it’s an observation. You take or leave. If I come across it again in my reading, I will pass it on. If not, no bother.

    Meanwhile, this is the sort of thing that is going to provide some more evidence about what happened with these POWs

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  68. Artillery shells are usually not that accurate and do not burn people to a crisp like the pictures you yourself shared.

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  69. Accuracy is only required for the intentional, war crimes, scenario which I have been opposing as unlikely. The important thing is that there is important information for any investigation from the surviving POWs and guards, as well as the site information.

    I do not think either the UN or ICRC are willing or able to carry out a proper investigation, despite strong insistence from the Russian side, but I am sure the Russian war crimes investigative groups, already active in the areas, will do their job.

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  70. Are you trying to argue that the UN is now hopelessly biased? Why bother having the UN if that is the case ? Why would nations like Russia be interested in being a member of an organisation that is out to get them?

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  71. You keep avoiding the fact that a number of the POW’s were burnt to a crisp. This is not what happens with a standard artillery shell which causes damage via the blast and shrapnel not from fire.

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  72. Not true. There is ample evidence that a few of the POWs were burned. I am sure this will all be considered by the investigators. Isolated facts like this cannot be used to support a war crimes scenario.

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  73. Is your position now that until such time as an investigation is carried out there is no point speculating what happened at the POW camp? In which case you should really revise your whole article and remove anything that suggests it might be either collateral damage from a Ukrainian missile attack meant for some place else or it was a war crime as the Ukrainians deliberately targeted them. It COULD be those things but it equally COULD be a Russian missile either missing it’s target or actually deliberately aimed at the building housing the POW’s. You admit you don’t know yet you spread disinformation as much as the pro-Ukrainian side does.

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  74. Your attitude on this reminds me of how you approached the shooting down of Malaysian Airways MH17. You basically dismissed the official investigation as being completely biased against the Russian side and then stated you would wait until the separate investigation that you claimed the Malaysian authorities were setting up independently. Then you pretty much ignored the topic and moced on to other things, You weren’t interested in finding the truth of the matter. You are seemingly only interested in presenting the non Western side as being more credible and once you’ve sewn the doubt you move on to the next situation and repeat.

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  75. Don’t be silly. My article called for an investigation. While giving preference to collateral damage is the most likely explanation I didn’t exclude anything. While utterly repugnant a war crime is a possibility and the Ukrainian ultranationalists have certainly shown they are capable of one. But that is not a reason to declare this actually happened.

    Yes, a Russian missile missing its target is a remote possibility, but very remote given that they had no targets in the areas. An unfortunate accident involving anti-missiles is also a remote possibility. This appeared to happen in Donetsk when a Ukrainian missile was shot down, but its bomb still landed in the town square. It also happened in Kiev when a Ukrainian anti-air missile missed incoming Russian rockets and instead hit an apartment building.

    While the DPR has anti-air munitions around Donetsk I doubt they have anything close to this prison.

    The trouble with you is that because I am careful and refuse to advance a specific explanation based only on ideological prejudice, as you do, then you don’t like it and want me to withdraw mu careful approach and instead commit to your biased approach.

    Not going to happen. There is no reason to commit to such an approach given that an investigation will surely take place.

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  76. As it turned out the MH17 investigation proved to be biased as it turned down all offers of Russian help despite the special security classification lifting on the nature of the likely BUK missile involved and the actual data in the construction and posting to Ukraine of the specific missile identified by the serial numbers the investigation team asked for information on. The team refused all requests to travel to Moscow to see the hard data from the Russian files. They also dismissed the important experimental evidence obtained by Russian investigators from the manufacturers of these missiles because it was performed in the ground and not in a flying platform (a silly objection).

    I followed all the reports issued by the investigation team and reviewed them on this blog (see https://openparachute.wordpress.com/?s=MH17). Since then, the investigation has gone to court. No information is made available (and I gather from some Dutch commenters) the court has prevented a lot of information to be submitted as evidence.

    Everybody seems to have ignored the topic since then – and I certainly would post something if any new report were to be issued. I think a crucial factor is that one of the possible criminals, the Ukrainian government, was included in the team and they have veto rights on any information release. Of course, this might change in the future as this government may be history in a few months.

    However, please don’t divert the discussion here. You are welcome to comment on any of the several blog posts I have made on the MH17 tragedy if you feel you have anything sensible to add (see https://openparachute.wordpress.com/?s=MH17). The only thing I can add at this stage is the information provided by an SBU member who was closely involved in what was happening in the east and defected last year (I think). I am not aware of any other evidence that has become available but welcome what you can add. I stress evidence is what I want – not personal attacks because I do not follow the obligatory lies on this tragedy.

    I assure you I am interested in the truth of this tragedy. I just think the search for this has been torpedoed by geopolitical interests. This situation is not helped by political smearing.

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  77. It looks as if a UN team at least has accepted the request for an investigation of the POW deaths. This woman may have an unusual interest in the Azovstahl fighters but at least she is providing up to date information about them.

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  78. Richard Christie

    Hi Gosman, it appears you are suddenly championing scientific inquiry.
    Admittedly the following question is off topic but do you you still deny the scientific consensus on anthropogenic climate change as exemplified by the IPCC reports?

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  79. I’ve never denied any consensus on anthropogenic climate change as exemplified by the IPCC reports. I have no idea what you are meaning. I have always been a big proponent of using the scientific method to ascertain the validity of claims.

    Now back on topic – Do you think Ken’s take on the attack on the POW’s in Ukraine is biased towards a pro-Russian point of view?

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  80. Richard Christie

    Ok well, your answer is inconsistent with a large volume of your comments made on-line over the past decade and more, comments that questioned the credibility of scientific conclusions and sought to downplay the threat climate change presents to the environment and society. You appeared to consistently oppose measures to mitigate the problem. But ok, since you now champion scientific inquiry we’ll move on.

    In answer to your question, no, I don’t think Ken presents a pro Russian viewpoint in this blog, although he may well have one, it’s not overtly evident.

    What Ken does do, is provide a check to the automatic acceptance of the tsunami of anti-Russian propaganda we are currently drowning in. Questioning anti Russian narrative is not the same as promoting pro Russian narrative.

    In my view you are foolish to believe any narrative in times of war, particularly from any party in or allied to those involved in the conflict. It may be years or decades before the truth emerges. MH17 is a case in point, we still have no credible explanation.

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  81. If you are going to make a claim about me you better have evidence backing you up.

    Where is your evidence for your statement:

    “your answer is inconsistent with a large volume of your comments made on-line over the past decade and more, comments that questioned the credibility of scientific conclusions and sought to downplay the threat climate change presents to the environment and society. You appeared to consistently oppose measures to mitigate the problem.”

    ?

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  82. Looks like some of the trials of the Ukrainian neo-Nazis have begun

    This tweet is from Vasily Prozorov – a former Ukrainian SBU officer who served in the east of Ukraine and has himself lots of documentary evidence about what happened there after 2014. He defected last year.

    His interest may indicate these trails concern crimes committed between 2014 and February this year.

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  83. Richard Christie

    Where is your evidence for your statement:

    Perusal of almost any discussion thread “Gosman” has participated in on proposed measures for climate change mitigation will show him/her nay-saying all proposals that are not “market” initiated and directed.

    This is akin to consistently championing business as usual, as it is blindingly obvious to all but the free-market fanatics, that market mechanisms will not and cannot address the problem within adequate time frames.

    Gosman also denigrates organisations that attempt to communicate the problem of AGW:

    “Any views on one of the father’s (sic) of the modern enviromental (sic) movement, Dr Patrick Moore’s recent comments about the problems with Greenpeace and how the movement has been captured by the extreme anti-developmentalist (sic) left?
    http://www.mercatornet.com/articles/view/confessions_of_a_greenpeace_dropout/
    Essentially there is not much I disagree with him on here. It is pretty much my position in a nut shell.”

    https://hot-topic.co.nz/people-talking-6/#comment-29737

    (The link in the thread comment is no longer active so we can surmise these views can be found here:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Patrick_Moore_(consultant)#Views

    But yes, I apologise and withdraw my claim that you deny scientific consensus, you reluctantly made your position clear a few years ago

    http://tumeke.blogspot.com/2011/01/100-pure-cow-shit.html#c3543563282956794873

    However I call you out as a distraction troll ( despite me also being guilty of being off topic in this thread), your M.O. is to snipe at and undermine confidence in any constructive plans to combat AGW that have any hint of state intervention (after all, in your viewpoint these are creeping tentacles of socialism).

    Rather than call out Ken for bias you might want to consider that your hard right free market positions colour your own viewpoint on Russia.

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  84. It seems to me the debates on the war in Ukraine are a bit similar to the debates on fluoridation and climate change – except that the distraction trolls are even more extreme. I have also never seen people so ready to block discussion partners or accuse them of crimes amounting to treason.

    I also find it disturbing that no one seems at all interested in problems caused by censorship, the wholesale denigration of a whole nationality and the imposition of collective responsibility onto a nation.

    So many people have reacted to this atmosphere by pulling there heds in – judging that their as absolutely no value in engaging on the issue.

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  85. David Fierstien

    Interesting thread. An objective reader with critical thinking skills could easily form the opinion that you are not completely honest as a discussion partner.

    Gosman: “You also rely on information from a source (i.e., Eva Bartlett) who makes a statement that it is indisputable to all but the lying Western media that the Ukrainians intentionally killed their own soldiers using Western weapons despite you yourself being in dispute with her view.”
    https://openparachute.wordpress.com/2022/07/30/over-50-pows-killed-a-military-accident-or-a-cynical-war-crime/#comment-272618

    Ken: Don’t misrepresent me yet again. I do not rely on Eva Bartlett’s reportage (I am fully aware that everyone has their prejudices and have followed her long enough to know some of hers). I always advocate one should treat media reports critically and intelligently – whatever the source. What I did was present her photos as an independent report actually on-the-ground. https://openparachute.wordpress.com/2022/07/30/over-50-pows-killed-a-military-accident-or-a-cynical-war-crime/#comment-272623

    Well, no Ken, Gosman didn’t misrepresent you. This is the extraordinary quote from her which you unnecessarily included with the photos:

    “ . . . Ukraine did this, intentionally, to its own people, its own soldiers, soldiers who had surrendered and, as Basurin pointed out, were confessing their crimes against Donbass civilians, their murdering of Donbass civilians, which came from commanders’ orders, which came from Kiev.
    HIMARS are a powerful multiple launch rocket system with GPS navigation. It is indisputable, except in lying Western media, that Ukraine intentionally killed its own soldiers using Western weapons.” –Eva Bartlett https://openparachute.wordpress.com/2022/07/30/over-50-pows-killed-a-military-accident-or-a-cynical-war-crime/#comment-272532

    Now, did you include her comment to put the photos in what you believed was a proper context?. . Or, on the other hand, did you intend to present her comment as one of many viewpoints? If that had been the case, then you would have presented her comment as one of many positions by offering an alternative explanation either by yourself or some other writer. But you didn’t do that.

    Gosman was correct. He or she accurately called you on what you did. Then you lied, said you didn’t do it, and cried foul. This saddens me because many well-intentioned people have, and do, look up to you as a great voice in the water-fluoridation debate. Now people who attack your own colleagues in this debate, can rightly point to you and rightly say, “Falsus in uno. Falsus in omnibus.” . . . And for what?

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  86. David. I have missed you. Hope you are well.

    You seem to think it is OK for the mainstream media you support to restrict their sources (excluding everyone on the ground in Donetsk) but hold me to higher standards).

    Eva was one of a number of journalists actually in the area who visited the prison destroyed by Ukrainian shelling. In contrast, the biased journalists you support are reporting from Kiev or the US.

    An unbiased commenter will simply note my approach in this arena has been the same as my approach on the fluoride issue. To actually check the evidence and not simply rely on the groupthink imposed on us by our politicians and the mainstream media.

    It is very noticeable that you have no interest in actually resorting to evidence or even alternative narratives. You are simply interested in discrediting an independent viewpoint.

    It’s called “poisoning the well” and is commonly reported to by scoundrels with a political barrow to push.

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  87. David Fierstien

    Thank you, Ken. I’m glad to see you debating the issues as well. I think it’s good for you. I still smile when I remember the time you provided a quotation about me on an anti-fluoride website and I said, “Hey, I’m just a guy with a big mouth who likes to argue.” Your response was, “Aren’t we all.” . . . But back to this topic.

    Your quote: “You seem to think it is OK for the mainstream media you support to restrict their sources (excluding everyone on the ground in Donetsk) but hold me to higher standards).”

    I’m going to quote you again in my response: “Don’t misrepresent me yet again.” . . I never said anything about my approval or disapproval of what the MSM does or doesn’t do.

    Your quote: “Eva was one of a number of journalists actually in the area who visited the prison destroyed by Ukrainian shelling. In contrast, the biased journalists you support are reporting from Kiev or the US.”

    Response: “Don’t misrepresent me yet again.” I never said anything about my support of biased journalists reporting from Kiev or the U.S.

    Your quote: “An unbiased commenter will simply note my approach in this arena has been the same as my approach on the fluoride issue. To actually check the evidence and not simply rely on the groupthink imposed on us by our politicians and the mainstream media.”

    Response: Irrelevant to my comment. If your response to my comment is intended as an exercise in a demonstration of the Straw Man Argument, you are succeeding.

    Your quote: “It is very noticeable that you have no interest in actually resorting to evidence or even alternative narratives. You are simply interested in discrediting an independent viewpoint.”

    Response: Ahhh . . Finally something relevant to what I actually said. Well no, Ken, I did provide evidence of what I said. My comment was a reflection of my observation of your dishonesty in at least one response that you made to Gosman. If you want the evidence which supports my observation, please re-read the comment. I provided direct quotes from both you and Gosman which proved that you were dishonest in your response.

    Your reference to the fallacy of poisoning the well is irrelevant.

    Again, it’s good to see you up on your feet again.

    Like

  88. From your reply, you seem to claim you don’t take a position on the mainstream media narratives. But you do on mine? Why the difference? Do you write these sorts of comments on posts which take a position supportive of the mainstream narratives on such subjects?

    Anyway, I am not interested in debating the minutia of how you may or may not interpret my comments in a discussion while saying nothing about the arguments of other discussion partners). That is simply a waste of time. One should engage with the content of my article.

    Interestingly you do nothing to engage with the issues in my article. Perhaps you agree with the article?

    You seem unwilling to take any position (except to make a personal attack on the minutia of my points made in the comments). Why not put your money where your mouth is and at least advance a position.

    Do you accept the fantastical narratives from the western media and the Kiev government that the deaths of the Azov POWs referred to in my article were caused by Russian shelling and not Ukrainian shelling (accidental or cynically intentional)?

    Do you accept the fantastical claims made by western media, and NATO & Kiev spokespersons, that the almost daily shelling of civilians in Donetsk city is caused by Russians and not the Ukrainian military?

    Do you accept the fantastical claims of this media and the Kiev government that the bombing of civilian areas of Donetsk with antipersonnel petal mines is carried out by the Russian military and not the Ukrainian military?

    Do you accept the fantastical claims of this media and the Kiev government that the danger of regular shelling of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power station is the result of Russians shelling their own military based at the station and not the result of purposeful Ukrainian military actions?

    Do you accept the fantastical claim initially made by western media and the Ukrainian government that the terrorist assassination of the journalist Darya Dugina (who was on Kiev’s “kill list”) was carried out by Russian FSB activists and not by the Ukrainian SBU (I say “initial” because that narrative now is changing)?

    Do you accept the fantastical claims that the Russians were responsible for the terrorist attacks on the Russian/EU (German, Netherlands, France) Nord Stream gas pipelines as claimed by the Kiev government and broadly suggested by western media?

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  89. David Fierstien

    This is funny. Your quote: “Anyway, I am not interested in debating the minutia of how you may or may not interpret my comments in a discussion while saying nothing about the arguments of other discussion partners). That is simply a waste of time.”

    LOL . . . Ummmm . . . Pot . . Kettle . . Black? Have you read your own articles & comments in which you condemn one side of the illegal invasion of Ukraine, while ignoring the crimes of the other side? I hope the irony of your comment wasn’t lost on you. . . Or were you displaying that rare, subtle sense of humor that we see too little of?

    So you don’t want to talk about your own comments, which you label “minutia.” That’s fine. I won’t discuss your small, minor, trivial comments here other than to ask, if you think your own comments are so unimportant that they should be ignored, why take the time to make them at all?

    You want to talk about the big picture. You want to get to the bottom of who’s responsible for the deaths of 50 POWs. Sure. I’ll be happy to oblige you. That’s easy. This is all on the Russian Federation and its president.

    Vladimir Putin violated The Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation, and Partnership between Ukraine and the Russian Federation which was an agreement between Ukraine and Russia, signed in 1997, and fixed the principle of strategic partnership, the recognition of the inviolability of existing borders, and respect for territorial integrity. The treaty, which the Russian Federation violated, was intended to prevent Ukraine and Russia from invading one another’s country respectively, and declaring war.

    If Putin hadn’t violated Russia’s own Treaty, those 50 POWs would be alive today. In fact, they wouldn’t have been POWs to begin with.

    Moreover, Putin violated the The Budapest Memorandum on Securities Assurances, which, by the way, again was signed by the President of Russia, and was intended to provide security assurances for Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine.

    And of course, if the president of the Russian Federation hadn’t violated its own agreement, those 50 POWs would be alive today. And again, they wouldn’t have been POWs to begin with.

    The conditions of the 1994 Agreement, which the Russian Federation agreed to, and then violated, are as follows
    1. Respect the signatory’s independence and sovereignty in the existing borders.
    2. Refrain from the threat or the use of force against the signatory.
    3. Refrain from economic coercion designed to subordinate to their own interest the exercise by the signatory of the rights inherent in its sovereignty and thus to secure advantages of any kind.
    4. Seek immediate Security Council action to provide assistance to the signatory if they “should become a victim of an act of aggression or an object of a threat of aggression in which nuclear weapons are used”.
    5. Refrain from the use of nuclear arms against the signatory.
    6. Consult with one another if questions arise regarding those commitments.

    President Putin has violated these first 3 obligations, which Russia agreed to, and has made a veiled allusion to his future violation of the 5th. (And, by the way, if you think New Zealand is a safe haven from the fallout which might result if that 5th obligation is violated-and I mean “fallout” in every sense of the word-you are incredibly naive.)

    Shall we also discuss the Russian Federation’s violation of The Geneva Convention, which was brought to your attention earlier in this thread, which you ignored, and from which you deflected? . . . And of course, if the previously mentioned stipulation of the Geneva Convention hadn’t been violated, those 50 POWs would be probably alive today.

    So your question has been answered with plenty of evidence to back it up. Was there anything else?

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  90. David, you have avoided all my questions. Interesting – you don’t seem to have any confidence in the narrative your mainstream media is promoting.

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  91. David Fierstien

    Ken, correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t you want to know who I thought was responsible for the deaths of the 50 POWs referenced in your blog post? Well I know who was responsible and I’ve provided the evidence to support my position. Am I mistaken to believe that you request a position that is evidence-based?

    As for the 5 other irrelevant questions you ask, which have nothing to do with your post, you said, “Anyway, I am not interested in debating the minutia of how you may or may not interpret my comments in a discussion . . . One should engage with the content of my article.”

    You don’t want me to respond to your comments. Now you do want me to respond to your comments. With all due respect, Ken, please make the decision of how you want me to respond and stick with it. . . Or better yet, why don’t you write my comments for me, sign my name to them, and then we’ll both be happy.

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  92. You claim that “I know who was responsible (for the death of over 50 Azov POWs) and I’ve provided the evidence to support my position.”

    It is simply an evasion to say “those 50 POWs would be alive today. In fact, they wouldn’t have been POWs to begin with.”

    Who fired the shells. missiles which lead to these deaths. This was the subject of my article which you attacked.

    It is simply evasive to attribute these deaths to something further along the chain. For example, there would not be any AZOV POWs if the AZOV extremist battalion had not been formed. If the ultranationalist-led overthrow of the democratically elected government had not happened (with US assistance) in February 2014. If the promotion of ultranationalism in Ukraine since the 90s had not happened. If the USSR had handled the problem of neo-Nazi criminals in Ukraine after the war properly. Etc, etc. All these explanations avoid answering the question I posed:

    “Do you accept the fantastical narratives from the western media and the Kiev government that the deaths of the Azov POWs referred to in my article were caused by Russian shelling and not Ukrainian shelling (accidental or cynically intentional)?”

    Like

  93. David Fierstien

    Ken says, “Who fired the shells. missiles which lead to these deaths. This was the subject of my article which you attacked.”

    Response: In case you forgot, I didn’t attack the subject of your article. I pointed out your dishonesty in your exchange with Gosman which, by the way, you never owned up to. Rather, you deflected away from it. Please feel free to review the first comment that I made in this thread to confirm that this was the case.

    Ken says, “It is simply evasive to attribute these deaths to something further along the chain. For example, there would not be any AZOV POWs if the AZOV extremist battalion had not been formed.”

    Response: Sure, Ken. You could also say that that they would never have been killed if they would never have been born. But the fact is that the shells that killed them never would have been fired if Russia hadn’t violated every Treaty that it ever made with the independent sovereign nation of Ukraine.

    You say you are shocked by these human deaths. Well the fact is that the chain of events that led to these deaths began with Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine. Your denial & deflection away from that Obvious Fact says a lot about you and your agenda, your motives, and your blind bias.

    In an absurd attempt to back me into a corner in order to answer a specific question the specific way you want me to answer it, you ask, “Do you accept the fantastical narratives from the western media and the Kiev government that the deaths of the Azov POWs referred to in my article were caused by Russian shelling and not Ukrainian shelling (accidental or cynically intentional)?”

    Response: I don’t know. I wasn’t there when the shots were fired. Were you? If you were, I’d love to see the the cell-phone video you would have taken.

    In your post, you push the theory of HIMARS missiles being fired. You have presented ZERO evidence to support that theory. Gosman is correct. HIMARS missiles are blast missiles which use shrapnel as projectiles on the victims.

    I have personally seen human bodies which have been torn apart by shrapnel from blast missiles.

    Have you, personally, ever seen a human body pin-cushioned, ripped apart and bloody from shrapnel?

    I have seen many buildings which have been hit by blast missiles. In fact, I was in a building that was struck by a 107 mm rocket, a “blast missile” that hurtles shrapnel the same way HIMARS missiles explode, and never, in all the buildings that I have personally seen destroyed by “blast missiles,” have I ever seen a fire started by one.

    Have you ever seen a building set on fire by a “blast missile”?

    The photos that you provided which were taken by Eva Bartlett show bodies that have been incinerated. I know for a fact that a “blast missile” like HIMARS missiles would not have done that to a human body, because I have seen bodies that have been ripped apart by shrapnel. They don’t look like that.

    Can you show me any evidence that a HIMARS missile would have started a fire in a barracks and incinerated human bodies? So far, the evidence which you have provided to support your agenda is noticeably lacking.

    So the answer to your question, which you very cleverly, in your own mind, think you forced upon me is . . I don’t know. Neither do you.

    But I do know that those 50+ POWs would all be alive today if President Putin hadn’t violated every treaty that Russia made with Ukraine in which the Russian Federation promised to respect the inviolability of the existing borders between Ukraine & Russia, respect Ukraine’s territorial integrity, acknowledge and adhere to Ukraine’s independence and sovereignty within its existing borders, or at the very least, had the decency to adhere to the Geneva Convention.

    So my turn to ask you some questions:
    1.) Have you, personally, ever seen a human body mutilated by shrapnel?
    2.) Have you ever seen, much less been in, a building that was struck by a “blast missile” and if so, did a fire occur? Yes or no?
    3.) What evidence do you have that a blast missile could incinerate a human body?
    4.) What evidence do you have that a blast missile would start a fire in a barracks?

    You told me earlier in this thread to “put my money where my mouth is.” I have. Now it’s your turn. I have yet to see any evidence for any theory that you have put forward in your blog post.

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  94. Your claim that in my post I “push(ed) the theory of HIMARS missiles being fired.”

    My only mention of such missiles was in my comment about “the apparent use of HIMARS missiles in the attack.” If they had been used this would suggest this was a cynical and purposeful attack by the Ukrainians and therefore clearly a war crime. In the later discussion I repeated:

    “I have never claimed a specific missile was used – only that claims for a HIMAR had been made. I simply referred to the reports of “the apparent use” of a HIMAR. I think if this is a war crime the HIMAR would provide the accuracy evident. It is possible the debris will be used to identify what particular missile what used (and with luck a serial number may be found).”

    Yes, the spokesman for the DPR referred to the use of HIMAR (and this claim was repeated by EVA) but that is certainly not proof. It is at least politically expedient to blame such an attack on HIMARS as this can be used to point the finger at the US. Rember such press statements are always political and by themselves should never be used as evidence.

    Obviously, the rocket debris could have been used to clarify the specific missile. Unfortunately, no international body was prepared to make a serious investigation. I believe that Russian investigators did make a report, but I have not seen this.

    This and other events have been exhaustively analysed by armchair “experts” in the way you have done. Such “expert” reports count for nothing because whatever their conclusions they are clearly aimed at confirming a bias.

    In the absence of clear evidence (your arguments about incineration, etc., are irrelevant – although in such attacks there is always evidence of the direction from which the missile arrived and the OSCE commonly made such determinations in the Donbass war) it is pretty obvious that this missile came from Ukrainian sources (as all the other missiles daily arriving in Donetsk). Whatever the nature of the missiles, the ensuing events and the question of whether the target was deliberate or accidental is only speculation.

    To claim this was an intentional attack by Russian forces is just fantastical, but is the sort of thing our media indulges in. Consider the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power station, the sailing attacks on civilian areas of Donetsk, the laying of petal anti-personnel mines in Donetsk, the terrorist assignation of Darya Dugina, the terrorist attacks of the Russian/EU Nordtream gas pipelines, etc. It’s one thing for a clown like Zelensky to make such claims but the fact that our media and politicians go along with them tells us that they are treating us like idiots.

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  95. I note you answer to my question about who launched the attack that killed the AZOV POWs – “Response: I don’t know. I wasn’t there when the shots were fired. “

    Great. That is honest and for most of us it should be our initial response. But this contrast with your original answer “I know who was responsible (for the death of over 50 Azov POWs) and I’ve provided the evidence to support my position.”

    While this latest response is honest and one that I would say myself in such situations we have to also deal with the fact that fantastical stories are being presented by our politicians and media, which are not honest. In such a situation we surely have a right to call out these lies and point to the evidence we do have which make this the result of a Ukrainian attack the most likely working conclusions. To get into arguments about the specific missile brand and likelihood of fires is simply avoiding that obvious conclusions and making excuses for the lies a=our media promotes.

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  96. David Fierstien

    Ok, two issues here. Let’s do this one first. From your last comment:

    “I note you answer to my question about who launched the attack that killed the AZOV POWs – “Response: I don’t know. I wasn’t there when the shots were fired. “

    “Great. That is honest and for most of us it should be our initial response. But this contrast with your original answer “I know who was responsible (for the death of over 50 Azov POWs) and I’ve provided the evidence to support my position.”

    Response: With two different questions, you’ll get two different answers. You asked who fired the shots. I don’t know who fired the shots. Nobody knows, other than whoever fired them. That’s why I avoided answering you question. It’s a stupid question. But finally, after you continued to ask that specific question, which nobody can answer, I said, “I don’t know.”

    The more important question that you didn’t ask, that I did answer, is who is responsible. Since the Russian Federation violated every peace and security treaty that it had made with the independent, sovereign nation of Ukraine during its illegal invasion, and since the war that ensued as a result of that crime was the backdrop for the shelling of the barracks which killed more than 50 POWs, Russia and its president are responsible for their deaths. They are the people who are in violation of the Treaties which were intended to prevent the kinds of tragedies that your blog post references.

    Now the second issue. Your quote:
    “Your claim that in my post I “push(ed) the theory of HIMARS missiles being fired.”

    “My only mention of such missiles was in my comment about “the apparent use of HIMARS missiles in the attack.” . . . . I have never claimed a specific missile was used – only that claims for a HIMAR had been made.”

    Response: WRONG! This is what you said in your blog post:

    “A Cynical War Crime . . . . One piece of evidence pointing to this possibility is the apparent use of HIMARS missiles in the attack.”

    You weren’t quoting anybody and you weren’t attributing this theory to anybody. It was your thought. Own it.

    You said one piece of evidence pointing to the possibility that this was a war crime was the apparent use of HIMARS.

    Definition of apparent: “adjective . . clearly visible or understood; obvious.”

    Ken, in this thread alone, this is the second time that I have pointed out your dishonesty, or at the very least, walking back comments that you have made. There is no point in discussing an issue with someone who continually takes back statements that they have made.

    It’s a waste of time and energy for me to go back and point out to you what you have said because you continue to deny what you’ve said. A more productive use of our time would be for us to progressively move forward.

    One more thing. I answered you question. You failed to answer the 4 questions I asked you.
    1.) Have you, personally, ever seen a human body mutilated by shrapnel?
    2.) Have you ever seen, much less been in, a building that was struck by a “blast missile” and if so, did a fire occur? Yes or no?
    3.) What evidence do you have that a blast missile could incinerate a human body?
    4.) What evidence do you have that a blast missile would start a fire in a barracks?

    I’ll take your lack of response to mean “No,” for the first two questions, and “None,” for the last two.

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  97. David, I notice that you avoid discussing real issues and instead try to “catch me out” in any discussion – often deliberately misinterpreting what I have clearly written.

    You have admitted that you “don’t know” (but are clearly too afraid to speculate about because it will conflict with your bias) who launched the attack which killed the AZOV POWs. Your initial response of “answering a question”: that I “didn’t ask” simply reveals your attempt to avoid the question and the real issue where our mainstream media was clearly lying.

    But thanks for being honest in your acknowledgement that you had no way of knowing.

    It’s a pity you attempt to continue to mislead about HIMARS. I have made clear that I was not claiming HMARS were used – only that if they were it would give credence (HIMAR accuracy) to the idea this was a cynical, purposeful attempt to eliminate these POWs and hence a clear war crime. I clearly said about this possibility “I hope this is not the case. The deliberate targeting of one’s own soldiers who have been taken prisoner would be the height of cynicism.”

    And don’t forget many of the news reports about this attack mention the use of HIMARS (not surprising considering the politics involved). Yes, I saw videos of debris collected which were claimed as evidence but understandably was not convinced by this (by itself a collection of investigated debris is not evidence). The evidence from the MH17 tragedy and the attack on the civilians at the Kramatorsk railway station had much clearer evidence because serial numbers in the debris of the missiles used were photographed.

    You are clearly scraping the barrel. This results from your motivation – you seem not to be interested in discussing the content of this post and instead seek to “poison the well” by deliberately misrepresenting what I have written.

    Your last questions are simply disingenuous and completely irrelevant to the content of my post. Not having been in a war situation (thankfully) I have not seen dismembered of charred bodies, etc. But I have seen plenty of evidence of fires resulting from such shelling and missile attacks. Video evidence after attacks on civilian areas of Donetsk and from areas of missile attacks in Ukraine has shown this.

    I do note that the Russians usually acknowledge their missile attacks and targets, but the Kiev government rarely does. In fact, they will usually claim the shelling of areas like the civilian centre of Donetsk and the Russian-held Zaporizhzhia nuclear power station are a result of Russian attacks – as they did with the murder of these POWs.

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  98. David Fierstien

    Ken, thank you for your comment.

    I’ve re-read your blog article a third time, and I’ve re-read the comments a second time. . . Now, I know that you approach issues with unbiased critical thinking, and of course you consider and examine all possibilities in any given question before you either acknowledge the possibility of something, or dismiss it.

    But I can’t for the life of me find any reference that you’ve made about the possibility that the Russians are responsible for the shelling of the POW barracks, either intentionally or accidentally.
    Considering the fact that no Russians were killed in the attack, and the primary objective of the Ukrainians is to kill Russians, I can’t believe you wouldn’t have at least considered it. Therefore I must have missed it. Mia culpa. 😢

    Could you please provide the statement from your blog article, or could you provide a link to your comments in which you discuss the likelihood of that occurrence? I’m very interested in what you’ve had to say about that possibility.

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  99. No, I didn’t consider the fantastical story promoted by Kiev that the “Russians” shelled the prison. The idea was preposterous. Absolutely no motive – quite the opposite. The DPR was an ally, and the prisoners were high value to both the DPR and the Russian Federation. And there was not one iota of evidence presented to back up this farcical claim (we have come to expect these sorts of lies from Kiev). The only reason I would have discussed the Kiev claim would have been to show how silly it was – which was not the intention of my article.

    I don’t think anyone seriously suggested a mistake firing by DPR (or Russian) forces. Considering the long history of apparently random Ukrainian shelling of this area of the DPR, and the motivation that these prisoners were releasing information about the guidance of high members of the Kiev regime in the war crimes they committed, the only reasonable explanation was Ukrainian shelling – with either accidental target=ting possibly intentional targeting.

    If you have any evidence to support the weird story Kiev proposed, then please present it here. If you cannot make a reasonable case of intent with some evidence, then don’t blame me for considering the obvious and probable rather than the highly improbable.

    We need to be careful here with the term “Russians.” While annexation has resolved this question the Ukrainians were, at the time, actually targeting Ukrainians – members of the DPR and mainly ethnically Russians – over the last 8 years. The prison was owned and controlled by the DPR and several of the guards (DPR citizens) were injured in the attack. If the Minsk Agreements had been followed those people would have remained Ukrainian citizens living within a recognised area with some control over their representation, culture and language.

    Sure, if the incident was accidental one could say the Ukrainians were just continuing the long aim of killing people they called Russian and therefore subhuman. But there is the possibility that the prison was knowingly targeting because of the damning information that would be revealed in the upcoming tribunal.

    Incidentally in the weeks before the attack on the prison I watched a report from Patrick Lancaster covering the shelling of villages outside Donetsk city. Mainly damage to homes. But some of the damage discussed occurred close to this particular prison. That is why I considered that the attack could have simply been collateral damage from this random shelling.

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  100. David Fierstien

    LOL Good luck to you

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  101. David Fierstien

    Hi Ken, . . again I find myself at fault for not being able to locate your comments regarding the violations which the Russian Federation committed, which ultimately led to the 50+ deaths referenced in your blog article.

    As everybody knows, you approach issues with unbiased critical thinking, and of course you consider and examine all possibilities in any given question before you either acknowledge the possibility of something, or dismiss it.

    Considering the fact that the Russian Federation violated every treaty having to do with security assurances that it ever signed with the Independent, Sovereign nation of Ukraine, which is ultimately responsible for the wholesale slaughter taking place in the Independent, Sovereign nation of Ukraine, I can’t believe you wouldn’t have at least discussed them. Therefore I must have missed your comments. Again, Mia culpa. 😢

    For example, Vladimir Putin violated The Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation, and Partnership between Ukraine and the Russian Federation which was an agreement between Ukraine and Russia, signed in 1997, and fixed the principle of strategic partnership, the recognition of the inviolability of existing borders, and respect for territorial integrity. The treaty, intended to prevent tragedies such as the 50+ deaths referenced in your article, which the Russian Federation violated, was intended to prevent Ukraine and Russia from invading one another’s country respectively, and declaring war.

    If Putin hadn’t violated Russia’s own Treaty, none of the wholesale slaughter taking place in the Independent, Sovereign nation of Ukraine would be taking place today.

    Moreover, Putin violated the The Budapest Memorandum on Securities Assurances, which, by the way, again was signed by the President of Russia, and was intended to provide security assurances for Belarus, Kazakhstan, and Ukraine.

    And of course, if the president of the Russian Federation hadn’t violated its own agreement, none of the wholesale slaughter taking place in the Independent, Sovereign nation of Ukraine would be taking place today.

    The conditions of the 1994 Agreement, which the Russian Federation agreed to, and then violated, are as follows
    1. Respect the signatory’s independence and sovereignty in the existing borders.
    2. Refrain from the threat or the use of force against the signatory.
    3. Refrain from economic coercion designed to subordinate to their own interest the exercise by the signatory of the rights inherent in its sovereignty and thus to secure advantages of any kind.
    4. Seek immediate Security Council action to provide assistance to the signatory if they “should become a victim of an act of aggression or an object of a threat of aggression in which nuclear weapons are used”.
    5. Refrain from the use of nuclear arms against the signatory.
    6. Consult with one another if questions arise regarding those commitments.

    President Putin has violated these first 3 obligations, which Russia agreed to, and has made a veiled allusion to his future violation of the 5th.

    And for the life of me, I can’t seem to locate your comments regarding the Russian Federation’s violation of the Geneva Convention which (let’s be honest here) was another factor leading to the deaths of the 50+ POWs who were killed. That’s what your blog article is about, isn’t it?

    I’m pretty sure it was brought to your attention before, but the prisoners were being kept in a facility only 15 km away from the front line, which was a clear breach of Article 19 of the Geneva convention which states the following:

    “ART. 19. — Prisoners of war shall be evacuated, as soon as
    possible after their capture, to camps situated in an area far enough
    from the combat zone for them to be out of danger.
    Only those prisoners of war who, owing to wounds or sickness,
    would run greater risks by being evacuated than by remaining
    where they are, may be temporarily kept back in a danger zone.
    Prisoners of war shall not be unnecessarily exposed to danger
    while awaiting evacuation from a fighting zone.”

    Obviously, an unbiased author like yourself, with critical thinking skills, writing a blog article about these 50+ deaths, wouldn’t have overlooked that fact. Sad to say, my reading skills don’t seem to be what they used to be. I must have missed it. 😢

    (Mention of the Russian Federation’s violation of the Partition Treaty on the Status and Conditions of the Black Sea Fleet when it illegally annexed Crimea wouldn’t be relevant here, so let’s skip that one for now.😉)

    So could you also please point me to your comments about the Russian Federation’s violation of The Geneva Convention, The Treaty on Friendship Cooperation, and Partnership, and The Budapest Memorandum on Securities Assurances? I’d love to see what you have said about them.

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  102. 1: David, do you not understand the hypocrisy of citing Article 19 on POWs in this situation while remaining mute about the murder of these POWs by Ukrainian fire, possibly cynically intentionality.

    Of course, the prisoners were moved from the combat zone (which was in Mariupol). They were not stationed near any military targets. The Ukrainians and the RC knew exactly where they were. They were being given care and medical attention.

    Now, what about asking why the Ukrainians attacked the prison. Or even attacked the area. What about suggesting where about in the DPR they should have been imprisoned – given that all populated areas of the DPR are being shelled by the Ukrainians.

    If that attack was intentional, it was clearly a war crime – in a way worse than the ongoing war crimes involved in shelling the centre of Donetsk because it would have been aimed at silencing their own soldiers.

    2: The citing of screeds of international agreements by armchair lawyers always amuses me. The thing about law is that it should be argued about by professionals speaking for each side. The presentation by one side will always be partisan, feeding confirmation bias and agendas. Your technique of carefully avoiding the facts on the ground (such as the illegal removal of the legal government of Ukraine, the existence of a legal government in Crimea, and the desire of the population of Crimea) simply illustrates your bias and manipulative use of international agreements.

    Your bias is further evidenced by you refusal to cite the Minsk agreements (which were signed by the Ukrainian government and the authorities in the DPR and LPR) and supported unanimously by the UN Security Council (which included New Zealand/Aotearoa at the time).

    3: The fact about international law is that it simply does not constrict any government. All governments will take actions according to their interests – and then justify it by citing and advocating for their own interpretation of international law. The Russian Federation did this to justify their invasion (also referencing the OSCE agreements on Security in Europe) just as the US, UK, France, etc,, have done this in the many examples of invasions of other countries. In fact, some experts have argued that the Russian Federation was on firmer ground in referencing international law than the US has ever been. Look how the US justified their invasion of Iraq!

    I am on record claiming that the Russian invasion is illegal because I don’t accept the legal arguments used (specifically about the degree of genocide occurring in the Donbass). At time I waver in this judgement as I have since heard some horrific stories. But, in the end, I have sympathy for one of the women in Metropole interviewed by Patrick Lancaster during the recent referendum. She said she did not agree with the initial invasion but felt that joining Russia is now the only reasonable outcome which can ensure the safety and quality of life of the population.
    The fact is, while the Russian-speaking population was treated badly over the last 8 years they are now being murdered and imprisoned as collaborators by Ukrainian militias in the territories recovered by the Ukrainians.

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  103. David Fierstien

    Your quote: “1: David, do you not understand the hypocrisy of citing Article 19 on POWs in this situation while remaining mute about the murder of these POWs by Ukrainian fire, possibly cynically intentionality.”

    Response: Well, Ken, if you ever get around to providing any evidence that Ukraine did this, I’ll be happy to look at it. In the first comment of this thread, “Sanctuary” strongly implied that Ukraine wasn’t responsible. You and he (or she) have a lot in common. You’ve both provided exactly the same amount of evidence to support your positions. . . In fact, you’ve provided exactly the same amount of evidence as Election Deniers in the United States who were literally laughed out of more than 60 courtrooms. Let me know how your arguments, with ZERO evidence, hold up in court.

    The evidence you provided to support your claim that Ukraine is responsible is as follows: “we have come to expect these sorts of lies from Kiev,” . . “I don’t think anyone seriously suggested a mistake firing by DPR (or Russian) forces.,” . . “Considering the long history of apparently random Ukrainian shelling of this area of the DPR, and the motivation that these prisoners were releasing information about the guidance of high members of the Kiev regime in the war crimes they committed, the only reasonable explanation was Ukrainian shelling,” . . “I do note that the Russians usually acknowledge their missile attacks and targets,” . . . “ it is pretty obvious that this missile came from Ukrainian sources (as all the other missiles daily arriving in Donetsk),” . . . And of course you copy/pasted an astonishing statement from Eva Bartlett, whose reporting on other issues has been debunked, and whom even you admit is biased.

    Well . . That’s good enough for me! ZERO evidence. If it works for an evidence-based thinker like you, it’ll obviously work in The Hague. Get some evidence.

    The Great American Icon, Foghorn Leghorn, once said, “You got a mind like a steel trap . . rusted shut that is.”

    Your quote: “Of course, the prisoners were moved from the combat zone (which was in Mariupol). They were not stationed near any military targets. The Ukrainians and the RC knew exactly where they were. They were being given care and medical attention.”

    Response: So? Article 19 of the Geneva Convention clearly says, “Prisoners of war shall be evacuated, as soon as possible after their capture, to camps situated in an area far enough
    from the combat zone for them to be out of danger.”

    Are you for real? They were 15 kilometers from the front line. I drive farther than that to get groceries. Obviously they weren’t “out of danger” were they. Don’t waste my time trying to defend the indefensible.

    Your quote: “2: The citing of screeds of international agreements by armchair lawyers always amuses me. The thing about law is that it should be argued about by professionals speaking for each side.”

    Response: Ok. Fine by me. . But since even you have admitted that the invasion of Ukraine was illegal, I shouldn’t have to cite international agreements. (“I am on record claiming that the Russian invasion is illegal”) It’s a moot point. We’re both on the same page. Your objection to my references of the Treaties signed between Ukraine & Russia is simply a knee-jerk reaction to disagree.

    Your quote: “Your technique of carefully avoiding the facts on the ground (such as the illegal removal of the legal government of Ukraine, the existence of a legal government in Crimea, and the desire of the population of Crimea) simply illustrates your bias and manipulative use of international agreements.”

    Response: No. It illustrates my ability to stay on topic.

    Your quote: “Your bias is further evidenced by you refusal to cite the Minsk agreements.”

    Response: Do you mean the same Minsk Agreements which president Putin declared “no longer existed” on 2/2/22? . . Sure. If you would like to cite agreements which don’t exist today to support arguments which are completely irrelevant to your blog article, we can do that. . . . Watch. I can do it too: The Magna Carta which was used to push the idea that Englishmen were entitled to a special heritage of rights and liberties in the American colonies? I’m not English. That means people have more rights in the United States than I do. . Hell, while we’re at it, why don’t we cite the Articles of Confederation. Would you like to buy some human beings to work your property? That’s about as relevant to the deaths of those 50+ prisoners as the defunct Minsk Agreements.

    Come on man. If you want to have a discussion NOW, don’t rely on non-existent agreements to push arguments that are irrelevant in the first place.

    3.) This third point you make is basically Whataboutism. “In fact, some experts have argued that the Russian Federation was on firmer ground in referencing international law than the US has ever been. Look how the US justified their invasion of Iraq!”

    Response: So? I guess the U.S. could have made a similar argument when it illegally invaded Iraq: ‘In fact, some experts have argued that the United States was on firmer ground in referencing international law than Germany. Look how Germany justified its invasion of Poland.’

    Why do you waste everybody’s time making these moronic, irrelevant arguments?

    Your quote: “But, in the end, I have sympathy for one of the women in Metropole interviewed by Patrick Lancaster during the recent referendum.”

    Response: Oh my god. Patrick Lancaster? The same Patrick Lancaster who has appeared numerous times on Alex Jones? The same Patrick Lancaster who has been accused of using bodies from a morgue to stage photographs? That Patrick Lancaster?

    Look, I understand that just because somebody goes on Infowars it doesn’t mean they agree with everything about Alex Jones. But a person appearing on Infowars, to make whatever comments they want to make, says they give a certain credence to the most infamous snake-oil salesman/conspiracy theorist/lawsuit losing criminal/bamboozler of our time. . . . It would be like Obama appearing on a David Duke Podcast. He would never do anything like that because he knows better, for obvious reasons. He would lose all credibility. . . Is it sinking in?

    I get it. . . I’m attacking the messenger here, and not the message. But since the message, or point you were making, was irrelevant in the first place, it doesn’t matter, does it.

    Your quote: “The fact is, while the Russian-speaking population was treated badly over the last 8 years they are now being murdered and imprisoned as collaborators by Ukrainian militias in the territories recovered by the Ukrainians.”

    Response: Irrelevant.

    As a reminder to you, your blog article is about the deaths of 50+ POWs, who was responsible, and what was the intent. Was it intentional, or was it an accident? All you have to say is that you have ZERO evidence one way or the other, but this is what you think. And that should be the end of it. Don’t make declarative statements when you have nothing to back them up. And please don’t go off on irrelevant rants. It’s a waste of everybody’s time.

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  104. David Fierstien

    One more thing. This statement from you, as irrelevant as it is to your blog article, caught my attention, so I thought that it wouldn’t be improper to digress with you, since you brought it up.

    Quote: “Your technique of carefully avoiding the facts on the ground (such as the illegal removal of the legal government of Ukraine, the existence of a legal government in Crimea, and the desire of the population of Crimea) . . . “

    “ . . and the desire of the population of Crimea.” I believe you are referring to the Crimean status referendum of 2014. As I recall, a referendum was held and the majority of the population of Crimea voted to join the Russian Federation.

    I was curious about the results of that vote so I looked it up. FUN FACT: The “official result” was that an amazing 97% voted for integration of the region into the Russian Federation. Isn’t that amazing? 97% Wow!. . . Polling prior to the vote found that 53.8% of Crimeans wanted to preserve its current status but with expanded powers and rights. . .

    According to Wikipedia, “Under armed occupation, the Crimean regional government was dissolved and reformed, and voted to hold a referendum on the status of Crimea on May 25.” . . . That’s the reference you were making when you said, “and the desire of the population of Crimea.”

    Fair enough.

    I was curious how that vote compared to other votes that were conducted “under armed occupation.”

    FUN FACT: A referendum on the Anschlus with Germany was held in German-occupied Austria on 10 April 1938. . . You see, after World War I, present day Austria, which had previously been a part of the Habsburg empire, claimed sovereignty over the majority German-speaking territory, and became a separate country from Germany. (Doesn’t that sound familiar?) . . . Long story short, the population of Austria voted by an amazing 99% to re-join Germany.

    A mere 2 percentage points separated the Crimean vote from the Austrian vote. Crimea became integrated into the Russian Federation, and Austria became integrated into Germany in 1938.

    As irrelevant as it is to your blog article, since you brought it up, this is what you’re defending.

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  105. David, I thing I have found slightly surprising is the absolute ignorance most people have about Ukraine – even of their recent history. Ands particularly those virtue signallers who rushed to post yellow and blue avatars on their social media.

    I am afraid you demonstrate that ignorance and an extreme way – a way I had yet to actually encounter.

    You dismiss the Minsk Agreements with the throw away “comment “Minsk Agreements which President Putin declared “no longer existed” on 2/2/22?” Why do you insist on dispelling your ignorance in this way? Perhaps it is a feeble attempt to confrontt the fact that the legally elected government was overthrown by an extremist-led coup in February 2014 and since then opposition parties have all been gradually banned and their leaders arrested. The Media has been concentrated in a few hands And so. These are issues you claim to be “off-topic!” Pathetic.

    I discussed the Minks Agreements in my article Ukraine war – a failure of honest diplomacy and reason. (). It was signed by Poroshenko and the leaders of the DPR and LPR in 2014/2015. It provided a sensible way to solve the Ukrainian crisis while retaining the country’s territorial integrity and satisfying the human rights of a significant ethnic population.

    It had unanimous international support (yes, I know how countries can be hypocritical in the UN security council votes). Poroshenko admitted recently he had no intention of carrying out the agreements, and simply used it to give him time to prepare for a military solution – which appeared to be starting just before the Russians made their decision to invade.

    Zelensky was elected with a peace manifesto and had a huge mandate to pursue these agreements. He honestly tried to but was opposed by the ultranationalists who by then have a large military presence and a lot of influence in state structures.

    Despite the possibilities for peace offered by the Minsk Agreements (and similarly for the February 2014 EU-sponsored agreement for a democratic resolution of the crisis), there was obviously no intention to follow the agreements and the Normandy powers (particularly France and Germany which had a role in pressuring the Ukrainian government) similarly did not carry out their tasks. I think the Russian government was probably the most honest – they supported the territorial integrity offered by the agreements and did not recognize the breakaway republics until February this year

    So, yes, the Minsk Agreements failed. Because of the political and military influence of ultranationalists in Ukrainian – and the dishonesty of the NATO powers which have for a long time been using Ukraine in their struggle against the Russian Federation.

    So, excuse me for saying this. Attributing the failure of the Minsk Agreements to Putin is simply ignorant and your use of such an argument is pathetic. In fact, one of the many criticisms of President Putin since 2014 in Russia has been the apparent delusions about the possibilities offered by these agreements. Many Russians wish he had taken the gloves off in 2014 and invaded Ukraine soon after the coup happened. It’s a complex issue, and I think Putin has a lot of political skills which are not apparent to those pushing for more immediate action but perhaps they had a point. I think this issue is, however, a lot wider and extends to the whole European orientation programme that Russia has now recognized to be a failure and have now given up on.

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  106. David Fierstien

    Ken, you can discuss the Minsk Agreements till hell freezes over. It still won’t make it relevant to your blog post. Your can bring up irrelevant issues, and it’s up to me whether I wish to engage or not. Your digression will never change the fact that you have ZERO evidence that Ukraine is responsible for the 50+ deaths of POWs. Was there anything else? .

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  107. My point about the Minks Agreement was that your comment and claim on it was simply ignorant. Surprisingly so.

    And if someone can be so ignorant about the Minsk Agreement, how can one take any of their comments on the Ukraine war seriously.

    Like

  108. And how is this for a childishly ignorant response:

    “Response: Oh my god. Patrick Lancaster? The same Patrick Lancaster who has appeared numerous times on Alex Jones? The same Patrick Lancaster who has been accused of using bodies from a morgue to stage photographs? That Patrick Lancaster?”

    I mentioned Patrick as the interviewer of the woman from Eastern Ukraine who made what I think was probably a very common view – that while one could oppose the original invasion the current situation mean that the Russian annexation would be the most successful way of bringing certainly, peace and increased living standards to the population. I don’t think she had voted in the referendum at that stage but I could understand if she voted for unification.

    Now your technique of slandering the interviewer is called “poisoning the well.” And using defamatory slander purposely spread about that journalist by disinformation experts in the NATO environment.,

    Patrick does tireless work reporting from an area which very few western journalists will report from. He is notable for actually searching out the viewpoints of those he interviews – purposely ensuring he gets a range of views (including anti-Russian). He does not simply present his own biased views which we commonly find in our news media.

    He is an American, living in Donetsk and married to a woman from Donetsk. He speaks Russian (the language of the area) and travels around reporting actual views of the people. Even today I saw a video report of his from the Crimea bridge which was enlightening – today there was only a 5-minute wait at security and both lanes were open. Yesterday he did the same trip when there was a 4 hr wait and only one lane was open.

    This is the sort of objective up-to-date information he presents. It’s on the ground, honestly presented without censorship. It’s people like him, Eva Bartlett, etc., who are showing the results of the almost daily shelling of civilian areas of Donetsk and the ongoing deaths there. This never gets reported doing our mainstream media.

    You reject this information because it doesn’t confirm your bias. It’s that simple and you resort to slander to childishly justify your self-censorship.

    it is simply stupid to limit t=our resp;one to the woman comment to a smear saying Patrick had “appeared numerous times on Alex Jones.” An unbiased person would b e asking why he has not appeared in the BBC or CNN?

    I think this illustrate how the new you are exposed to is carefully selected to prevent you getting such unbiased reports. SAnd you earnestly assist in the selection by cartefgyully making sure (*using the above excuses) that you will n oty consider anything from such sources.

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  109. David Fierstien

    Your attempts to deflect away from the issue are duly noted. They don’t change the fact that you have ZERO evidence that Ukraine is responsible for the 50+ deaths of POWs. What area would you like to deflect into now? Perhaps my quotation of Foghorn Leghorn?

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  110. David, you were invited to provide evidence or even a scenario to support your claim of Russian shelling on the prison and you refused to do so, instead going into a diversion based on manipulated interpretations of international agreements. So don’t accuse me of deflection when you do this all the time to avoid the problem of lack of evidence on your part.

    I am aware that you feel the need to blame everything on Russia and President Putin. But surely this episode illustrates this problem. It is simply a desire on your part and is never supported by evidence. Unfortunately, western politicians and mass media adopt the same approach so I can understand how you feel it is justified. But you end up looking silly when you are called out about the obvious. And I think the people at large are getting a bit fed up with such a puerile approach – especially when they now see the living standards being destroyed by this sillines.

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  111. David Fierstien

    Ken, your comment: “David, you were invited to provide evidence or even a scenario to support your claim of Russian shelling on the prison and you refused to do so,”

    Response: Of course you are lying. Please show me where I ever claimed Russia shelled the prison. I never said that.

    Now you’ve resorted to lying in order to divert away from the fact that you have ZERO evidence of YOUR claim that Ukraine shelled the barracks. I’ll be happy to provide your comments in which you explicitly claim it was Ukraine if you would like.

    Would you like to sink further into the depths of falsehoods before you admit you have ZERO evidence that Ukraine did this. It is your opinion. It is what you think. And that would be fine.

    My first comment in this thread spoke of a previous lie in which you were caught. Of that I said, “This saddens me because many well-intentioned people have, and do, look up to you as a great voice in the water-fluoridation debate. Now people who attack your own colleagues in (that) debate, can rightly point to you and rightly say, “Falsus in uno. Falsus in omnibus.” . . . And for what?”

    Get your act together, Ken. Somebody who has to resort to lying to push a geopolitical agenda is a shill.

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  112. David Fierstien

    By the way Ken:

    BREAKING NEWS: Alex Jones, on whose program Patrick Lancaster (from whom you get your information) is a frequent guest, has just been punished by the largest judgment in history. A jury took 15 minutes to award plaintiffs, who accused him of being a liar, One Billion Dollars. That officially makes Alex Jones, the biggest liar in history. Mover, it makes Infowars, the lyingest program in the history of television.

    As I said earlier, (which you failed to mention) for anyone, who wants to maintain any sense of credibility, to go on Infowars would be like Obama going on a podcast run by David Duke. He wouldn’t do it because he understands he would lose every shred of credibility he ever had.

    So we have you, a proven liar, getting your information from someone who frequents the lyingest program in history. Good for you, Ken. Good for you.

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  113. David – in one of your comments:

    “But I can’t for the life of me find any reference that you’ve made about the possibility that the Russians are responsible for the shelling of the POW barracks, either intentionally or accidentally.
    Considering the fact that no Russians were killed in the attack, and the primary objective of the Ukrainians is to kill Russians, I can’t believe you wouldn’t have at least considered it. Therefore I must have missed it. Mia culpa.”

    Now you expected me to argue the case of “Russian” responsibility for these murders and when I asked you to provide any evidence to support this scenario you ran away.

    You yourself seem to have accepted the silly argument that because no Russians were killed in the attack it must have been a Russian attack. You seem to think the injuries received by the DPR guards were not worth considering.

    Of course, you went on the argue the other bias-confirming arguments (like missiles never cause fires).

    All the evidence (including the testimony from some of the surviving POWs) indicates this attack was just another one of the daily missile attacks the Ukrainian forces rain down on Donetsk city and its surroundings. This attack was of course extremely likely to be one of the Ukrainian attacks and it is simply highly improbable that it was caused by “Russians,” Albanians or Cambodians. Yes, I have considered that it could have been a misfire or the result of anti-air missile defenses which has happened several times in this war, including in Donetsk City. But you have not produced any evidence that the prison was guarded by anti-air defenses and I consider that would be extremely unlikely.

    You have simply argued for an extremely improbable case, for which there is no evidence because you simply refuse to admit what is obvious. That is a pathetic “last-resot” argument as it is easy to argue I don’t have any evidence because I was not there, didn’t take a photograph, etc.

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  114. This is simply childish avoidance and attempted diversion. Patrick produces good evidence in the form of videos of people in the areas stating their opinions.

    You avoid this by ranting on about a US News media reporter.

    Now I do not know the guy you are obsessed with and have no interest in chasing him down. US media presentation is just so bad these days. But I won’t form an opinion on him without experiencing him. I go on evidence – not group-think.

    But that guy is irrelevant, except if he has interviewed Patrick then he has performed much better than most of the other US media which actively boycott Patrick.

    Still, I repeat your avoidance uses a pathetic argument and exposes your inability to actually consider evidence. You actively self-censor.

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  115. David Fierstien

    Ken, your comment: “You yourself seem to have accepted the silly argument that because no Russians were killed in the attack it must have been a Russian attack. You seem to think the injuries received by the DPR guards were not worth considering.”
    Response: Do you have a problem with reading comprehension? I never claimed that the Russians were responsible. I asked you if you had considered it. Do you understand the difference? Or are you purposely being obtuse and argumentative?
    Ken: “Of course, you went on the argue the other bias-confirming arguments (like missiles never cause fires).”
    Response: Sure. It is possible to point out that there is evidence on either side of a question without making a claim one way or the other. Anybody with critical thinking skills would do that. It appears that you lack them. When you asked me directly who shelled the barracks, do you remember what I said? QUOTE: “I don’t know.”
    What exactly is your problem?
    Ken: “You yourself seem to have accepted the silly argument that because no Russians were killed in the attack it must have been a Russian attack.”
    Response: That’s a lie. I can’t imagine why you would say I’ve accepted anything since I said, “I don’t know.”
    Ken: “You have simply argued for an extremely improbable case,”
    Response: You’re lying again. This is becoming habitual with you. If you are trying to put yourself into a position in which nobody can take you seriously, you are succeeding. I asked YOU if YOU had considered the possibility, and here are some reasons why you might have considered it.
    Ken, it is simply not possible to carry on an intelligent discussion with a habitual liar. Maybe you’re pathological. Maybe you just lack reading comprehension skills. I don’t know what your problem is. But if you continue to lie, I’ll have to end this discussion. It’s becoming meaningless.
    Despite these diversions, you still have provided ZERO evidence that Ukraine is responsible for the shelling of the POW barracks referenced in your blog article. You claim to be an evidence based thinker, and yet you blatantly made the claim that Ukraine did this . . . with ZERO evidence. For example, your quote: “Now, what about asking why the Ukrainians attacked the prison.”
    Even you must see the problem here.
    You see, that’s the difference between you and me. I demand evidence before I will make a blatant claim. You on the other hand have been known to make claims with ZERO evidence as long as they confirm your preconceived biases. If you can ever learn to have an HONEST discussion, perhaps we can move on.

    Like

  116. David Fierstien

    Ken: “You avoid this by ranting on about a US News media reporter. . . . Now I do not know the guy you are obsessed with and have no interest in chasing him down.”
    Response: You are referring to Alex Jones. He is, by no definition of the phrase, a “U.S. News media reporter.” He was introduced into this discussion because you used Patrick Lancaster as a source and came to his defense when I pointed out that he has been accused of using bodies from a morgue to stage photographs, and that he has appeared frequently on InfoWars.
    Alex Jones is relevant to any discussion of Patrick Lancaster, because, according to Wikipedia, QUOTE: “in 2022 Lancaster’s SOLE (My Emphasis) ‘international’ outlet has been conspiracy theory website InfoWars.” ENDQUOTE
    Do you understand that? . . InfoWars is the ONLY international media outlet that Lancaster is currently using. How could Jones not be relevant to any honest discussion about Lancaster?
    You accused me of poisoning the well by pointing this out. The fact is that Lancaster poisoned himself by jumping into a well that was already poisoned. I merely stated a fact.
    Of course you don’t know who Alex Jones is, despite the fact that he just had the largest civil judgment leveled against him . . . In History. That is because he has ZERO regard for the truth, he is a proven liar, and he has destroyed lives with his lies. It was almost a Billion Dollars, which is certainly newsworthy.
    But you don’t know about him because your sole source of information, pro-Russian propaganda, would have no reason to inform you that some of their tools are in bed with someone who is now officially the biggest liar on the planet.
    One must certainly wonder why Patrick Lancaster chose InfoWars as his only international platform and discontinued his relationships with Reuters, The Associated Press, Skynews, ITN, or SPIEGEL TV? . . I’m just speculating here, but maybe InfoWars is less discriminating about broadcasting facts than Reuters. . . Well, we know that’s true.
    I’ve said before, former President Obama would never go on a David Duke podcast because he knows better. He would lose all credibility. Of course David Duke is another guy you’ve probably never heard of, which would be odd, since you have no problem discussing U.S. politics. Anybody with any knowledge of political discord in the United States would certainly be aware of David Duke.
    Your problem is that you get your information from only one side. That’s not critical thinking. That’s confirmation bias.
    Despite these diversions, you still have provided ZERO evidence that Ukraine is responsible for the shelling of the POW barracks referenced in your blog article. You claim to be an evidence based thinker, and yet you blatantly made the claim that Ukraine did this . . . with ZERO evidence. For example, your quote: “No, I didn’t consider the fantastical story promoted by Kiev that the “Russians” shelled the prison. The idea was preposterous.”
    Even you must see the problem here.
    You see, that’s the difference between you and me. I demand evidence before I will make a blatant claim. You on the other hand have been known to make claims with ZERO evidence as long as they confirm your preconceived biases. If you can ever learn to have an HONEST discussion, perhaps we can move on.

    Like

  117. David Fierstien

    A repeat of my previous comment, since your website appears to have convoluted the text. Again:

    Ken, your comment: “You yourself seem to have accepted the silly argument that because no Russians were killed in the attack it must have been a Russian attack. You seem to think the injuries received by the DPR guards were not worth considering.”

    Response: Do you have a problem with reading comprehension? I never claimed that the Russians were responsible. I asked you if you had considered it. Do you understand the difference? Or are you purposely being obtuse and argumentative?

    Ken: “Of course, you went on the argue the other bias-confirming arguments (like missiles never cause fires).”
    Response: Sure. It is possible to point out that there is evidence on either side of a question without making a claim one way or the other. Anybody with critical thinking skills would do that. It appears that you lack them. When you asked me directly who shelled the barracks, do you remember what I said? QUOTE: “I don’t know.”

    What exactly is your problem?

    Ken: “You yourself seem to have accepted the silly argument that because no Russians were killed in the attack it must have been a Russian attack.”

    Response: That’s a lie. I can’t imagine why you would say I’ve accepted anything since I said, “I don’t know.”

    Ken: “You have simply argued for an extremely improbable case,”

    Response: You’re lying again. This is becoming habitual with you. If you are trying to put yourself into a position in which nobody can take you seriously, you are succeeding. I asked YOU if YOU had considered the possibility, and here are some reasons why you might have considered it.

    Ken, it is simply not possible to carry on an intelligent discussion with a habitual liar. Maybe you’re pathological. Maybe you just lack reading comprehension skills. I don’t know what your problem is. But if you continue to lie, I’ll have to end this discussion. It’s becoming meaningless.

    Despite these diversions, you still have provided ZERO evidence that Ukraine is responsible for the shelling of the POW barracks referenced in your blog article. You claim to be an evidence based thinker, and yet you blatantly made the claim that Ukraine did this . . . with ZERO evidence. For example, your quote: “Now, what about asking why the Ukrainians attacked the prison.”

    Even you must see the problem here.

    You see, that’s the difference between you and me. I demand evidence before I will make a blatant claim. You on the other hand have been known to make claims with ZERO evidence as long as they confirm your preconceived biases. If you can ever learn to have an HONEST discussion, perhaps we can move on.

    Like

  118. David Fierstien

    A repeat of my previous comment, since something appears to have convoluted the text. Again:

    Ken: “You avoid this by ranting on about a US News media reporter. . . . Now I do not know the guy you are obsessed with and have no interest in chasing him down.”

    Response: You are referring to Alex Jones. He is, by no definition of the phrase, a “U.S. News media reporter.” He was introduced into this discussion because you used Patrick Lancaster as a source and came to his defense when I pointed out that he has been accused of using bodies from a morgue to stage photographs, and that he has appeared frequently on InfoWars.

    Alex Jones is relevant to any discussion of Patrick Lancaster, because, according to Wikipedia, QUOTE: “in 2022 Lancaster’s SOLE (My Emphasis) ‘international’ outlet has been conspiracy theory website InfoWars.” ENDQUOTE

    Do you understand that? . . InfoWars is the ONLY international media outlet that Lancaster is currently using. How could Jones not be relevant to any honest discussion about Lancaster?

    You accused me of poisoning the well by pointing this out. The fact is that Lancaster poisoned himself by jumping into a well that was already poisoned. I merely stated a fact.

    Of course you don’t know who Alex Jones is, despite the fact that he just had the largest civil judgment leveled against him . . . In History. That is because he has ZERO regard for the truth, he is a proven liar, and he has destroyed lives with his lies. It was almost a Billion Dollars, which is certainly newsworthy.

    But you don’t know about him because your sole source of information, pro-Russian propaganda, would have no reason to inform you that some of their tools are in bed with someone who is now officially the biggest liar on the planet.

    One must certainly wonder why Patrick Lancaster chose InfoWars as his only international platform and discontinued his relationships with Reuters, The Associated Press, Skynews, ITN, or SPIEGEL TV? . . I’m just speculating here, but maybe InfoWars is less discriminating about broadcasting facts than Reuters. . . Well, we know that’s true.

    I’ve said before, former President Obama would never go on a David Duke podcast because he knows better. He would lose all credibility. Of course David Duke is another guy you’ve probably never heard of, which would be odd, since you have no problem discussing U.S. politics. Anybody with any knowledge of political discord in the United States would certainly be aware of David Duke.

    Your problem is that you get your information from only one side. That’s not critical thinking. That’s confirmation bias.

    Despite these diversions, you still have provided ZERO evidence that Ukraine is responsible for the shelling of the POW barracks referenced in your blog article. You claim to be an evidence based thinker, and yet you blatantly made the claim that Ukraine did this . . . with ZERO evidence. For example, your quote: “No, I didn’t consider the fantastical story promoted by Kiev that the “Russians” shelled the prison. The idea was preposterous.”

    Even you must see the problem here.

    You see, that’s the difference between you and me. I demand evidence before I will make a blatant claim. You on the other hand have been known to make claims with ZERO evidence as long as they confirm your preconceived biases. If you can ever learn to have an HONEST discussion, perhaps we can move on.

    Like

  119. David, there are basically two approaches in a discussion when new information is produced.

    1: Don’t look at the offered information but do a google search on the authors, the news media, organisation, etc. Choose any negative information you find (there will always be some, particularly in the current times of disinformation, fake news, and censorship). Cite this slander to avoid considering the offered evidence. Never look at the original information.

    You end up confirming your bias, poisoning the well and thinking you have discredited the information. You haven’t, but you have exposed your inability to discuss issues in an adult way and prevented yourself from possibly learning something new. This is the problem with self-censorship – and there is a lot of it about these days. We are encouraged to self-censor.

    2: Look at the information. Note the apparent biases of the author, organisation or news media. Maybe even google search them.
    But honestly consider the information and come to your own decision about how relevant it is. Particularly take on board anything new you have not considered in the past.

    You end up possibly learning something. You show respect to your discussion partner an d have behaved in an adult way.

    Sorry for pushing my own barrow but I will provide two examples of this more adult approach – my articles: What about those Russian neo-Nazis? and Once again, those Russian neo-Nazis – the Wagner group. These article resulted from requests from commenters to discuss articles they cited (note – they cited them only – as if this was a sufficient argument – they didn’t make any effort to consider the content of the articles.
    In my second article I did comment on the author:

    “I will start by explaining that Lucas Andriukaitis is a researcher at the Atlantic Council DFR Laboratory. The Atlantic Council is well known to be strongly linked to NATO and funded by it. Ukrainians occupy many of the Council’s fellowships. . . “

    But said: “I don’t wish to condemn the article by describing the source and association. Let its claims be judged by the evidence presented in the article.”

    So, in both articles, I carefully went through all the claims made in the cited articles (the evidence) and considered how adequate they were.

    Despite both of the original commenters assuring me that they would engage in a discussion if I did this they – in the end – refused. In contrast, I learned several things from the exercise.

    So perhaps you can understand why I am very critical of the common technique of using citations as “proof” (it happens a lot in science) and why I think it is childish to avoid discussing issues by using the technique of “poisoning the well.”

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  120. OK, you don’t believe the “Russians” shelled these POWs but asked if I had considered it. Yes, I did (how can one not when so much of the propaganda makes that claim) but found absolutely no evidence for it (You also found no credible evidence – you were mistaken about the fire and the injured guards).

    You say you can’t decide who did it. Can you not accept the fact that Ukrainian forces daily shell the DPR, including civilian areas like Donetsk city, causing large numbers of civilian deaths. That they have been known to shell in the areas of the prison? That injured POWs interviewed in the hospital report the typical whine of “incoming,” several times that particular night?

    I do accept that and therefore I think there is no other credible explanation for these deaths than what I presented. However, I found it difficult to accept they would cynically set out to murder these POWs, although they certainly had motives.

    Mind you, the Ukrainians have since carried out several terrorist attacks, so I guess they are capable of it. Although these terrorist attacks were organized by the SBU which routinely murders and=tortures civilians, rather than the AFU.

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  121. David Fierstien

    Immediately after the blast, Russia’s Defense Ministry said that 40 Ukrainian prisoners were killed (which was incorrect) and 75 wounded. The ministry also said eight prison guards were injured.

    About the same time, the separatist DNR authorities put the death toll at 53 (which I believe is the correct number), and said that no prison guards had been injured or killed.

    Russia’s final list of casualties stated that a total of 50 Ukrainian PoWs were killed (still incorrect) and 73 wounded. . . . Source: Moscow Times.

    To my knowledge, the Russian authorities still have not granted the ICRC access to the POW camp, which is a violation of the 3rd Geneva Convention. The ICRC website says they haven’t been allowed access. Why would that be?

    Despite all your diversions, you still have provided ZERO evidence that Ukraine is responsible for the shelling of the POW barracks referenced in your blog article.

    You claim to be an evidence based thinker, and yet you blatantly made the claim that Ukraine did this . . . with ZERO evidence. For example, your quote: “No, I didn’t consider the fantastical story promoted by Kiev that the “Russians” shelled the prison. The idea was preposterous.” . . . . ” “Now, what about asking why the Ukrainians attacked the prison.” . . . . and of course this from Eva Bartlett which you posted without question: “Ukraine did this, intentionally, to its own people, its own soldiers.”

    Even you must see the problem here.

    You see, that’s the difference between you and me. I demand evidence before I will make a blatant claim. You on the other hand have been known to make claims with ZERO evidence as long as they confirm your preconceived biases.

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  122. David Fierstien

    Did you have any other sources that you’d like to share whose reporting is of such a caliber that only Alex Jones’ InfoWars will broadcast them?

    By the way, you still have provided ZERO evidence that Ukraine is responsible for the shelling of the POW barracks referenced in your blog article, despite your many claims that Ukraine did it.

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  123. David, are you not aware that in reporting such incidents the numbers vary as more information comes in? If so, why try to make an issue of different numbers – I always consider that normal.

    Interesting you rely on Moscow News (a known anti-Russia source based in Finland and should never be considered a reliable source of “official” Russian government information as you seem to think). I have always said one should approach the news media critically and intelligently. I would be happy to consider reports from Moscow news alongside those from Alex Jones (It sounds from your claims these may both be low-quality sources) – but I would be a bit more sensible in my evaluation of them.

    You say: “to my knowledge, the Russian authorities still have not granted the ICRC access to the POW camp,” which probably indicates how your self-censorship leads to incorrect conclusions. I was aware early on of numerous requests from the DPR and Russian authorities for the ICRC and the UN to make investigations. The ICRC responded by saying they would not make an assessment as it was not their job (probably correct but it pissed off the Russian media). I have yet to hear if the UN responded to the request an d what their response was (I searched UN sources at the time and found nothing).

    Don’t be misled by the fact the Ukrainian Branch of the RC demanded access and was, understandably, denied. The Ukrainian branches of international bodies are often at loggerheads with the parent bodies because they object to anything negative about the situation in Ukraine in their reports. Consider what happened with Amnesty. And after the POW murders, statements from leading Ukrainian politicians were often extremely critical of the UN and ICRC. All these bodies have made reports highly critical of human rights, treatment of POWs and torture in Ukraine

    The ICRC does regularly inspect POW conditions, although I have heard comments from a Russian reporter who seems to campaign for the Azov prisoners that the ICRC has been rather tardy in their visits, and has been criticised for this.

    I think any sensible person would agree with Eva’s conclusions. And she is, after all, one of the many journalists who did visit the prison (I don’t think Patrick Lancaster did) and please note that all of their reports have been ignored by the western mainstream media (standard censorship practice) which prefers to report the claims of Zelensky as somehow factual.

    Given that neither you nor I have positive evidence that the US landed men on the moon fifty years ago we both have to make a judgement on whatever evidence we can glean and rely on probabilities to make our decisions – and, after all, the conspiracy theorists can be very convincing in their rejection of the landings. Far more convincing than the clown Zelensky and his spokespersons.

    Given this sensible approach and recognising you cannot prove things one way or the other, what do you think is most likely? Did the US land men on the moon? Did the UAR shell the prison leading to the deaths of over 50 Azov POWs?

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  124. David, you ask “Did you have any other sources that you’d like to share whose reporting is of such a caliber that only Alex Jones’ InfoWars will broadcast them?.”

    You know very well I do not check Alex Jones or anyone to see if a source is respectable or not. I look at the evidence and judge each source on that evidence.

    Now I get the argument that you will reject any source used by Alex Jones. So I did and brief check – very brief I just do not like that site. But I see a couple of items there use sources like the Bureau of Labor Statistics and CBS Evening news.

    So, I guess those sources are denied to you from now on? You allow InfoWars to guide your self-censoring.

    There is a lesson in this little example, but I am not sure if you are up to understanding it.

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  125. David Fierstien

    Well . . I certainly didn’t intend to stifle your creative spin. You trot out all the characters from Infowars that you want. More power to you man!

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  126. Seriously, you are the person resorting to Infowars – as a method of avoiding the simple observation I made from one of Patrick’s interviews that some residents of the Kherson area did not welcome the Russian invasion but now it had happened they saw the only way of a safe and peaceful future was to support to transfer of their territories to the Russian Federation.

    One thing I like (and also find a bit embarrassing) about Patrick’s videos is that he does not present his own opinion but asks questions to elucidate the opinions of those who he interviews. This sometimes causes hostility – him being an American and asking Russians what they think about the claims their areas are being attacked by Russians and not Ukrainians. Citizens of Donetsk who have been shelled for 8 years understandably react angrily to such an intrusive question.

    As for poisoning the waters – I have no respect for most of the western media — in fact, most of the mainstream media itself. This does not mean I reject a report because it is published in a particular paper (any more than I will reject or accept a scientific report because of the journal it is published in). I always look at specific evidence.

    For example, I reject the conclusions of Christine Till’s papers on the effect of fluoridation on childhood IQ because I have looked at the details and found their evidence does not support their claims. It would be simply childish for me to reject their studies simply because of the name of the journal. That would indicate I had not bothered to make a proper assessment and was simply running weight my bias.

    Similarly, it would be childish for me to reject a news report because it was published in a US, NZ or Russian publication without looking at the evidence. Even worse to reject a report from someone, and condemn the reporter, because their report had been carried by the Telegraph, NYT or RT.

    Yes, I realise this happens – it is pathetic but it indicates the level we have descended to. The way self-=censorship has been imposed on us.

    You should be ashamed to have allowed yourself to be influenced in this way. You only endanger yourself by cutting off access to information and allowing your bias to have free reign.

    And even more afraid to use the poisoning of the water argument against a discussion partner.

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