Ukraine war: 100,000 Russian soldiers? “That’s just not true”

“Culture in wartime” – Ukrainian culture minister resigns

2:35 a.m: After dissatisfaction with the handling of state funds, the Ukrainian Minister of Culture Olexander Tkachenko has submitted his resignation. There had been “a wave of misunderstandings about the importance of culture in times of war,” Tkachenko said on Telegram late Thursday evening as an explanation for his move. After that, he was surprised by a statement by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy on this subject.

Zelenskyi said in his evening video address on Thursday that he had asked Prime Minister Denys Schmyhal to consider replacing Tkachenko. Previously, Ukrainian media reported that the culture minister wanted to spend 500 million hryvnia (about 12 million euros) to complete a national museum dedicated to the Ukrainian victims of the Holodomor genocide in the 1930s.

On Thursday evening, on his Telegram channel, Tkachenko defended spending on culture even in times of war. “Culture during the war is important because it is not only a war for territories but also for people,” Tkachenko wrote there. Funds for culture are no less important during the war than funds for drones, “because culture is the protective shield of our identity and our borders,” said the politician.

Zelenskyj criticized in his speech: “In times of war like this, the main attention of the state, and thus also of state resources, should be devoted to defence”. Although museums and other cultural areas are important, “we have other priorities right now.” After around 17 months of Russian war of aggression, Ukrainian society understands that savings are currently being made on things that are not urgently needed. Zelenskyj also instructed the government to develop alternative financing options for cultural and other projects.

Putin opens large LNG project in the Arctic

Friday, July 21, 1:18 am: Russian President Vladimir Putin inaugurated the first section of the large liquefied natural gas project Arctic LNG 2 in the Murmansk region on Thursday. At the televised opening ceremony, a member of the operating company asked for “permission to begin transport operations at sea.” Putin replied “approval granted” and flipped a switch. The ceremony was also attended by the chairman of the natural gas concern Nowatek, Leonid Michelson.

The project, which will transport gas from Russia in the form of liquefied natural gas (LNG) in tankers across the Arctic waters, is estimated to cost $21 billion. Production capacities of 19.8 million tons of liquid gas per year are planned with the help of three production plants. Arctic LNG 2 is located on the Gydan Peninsula, around 30 kilometers from a first giant LNG plant on the Yamal Peninsula, which became operational in 2017.

Until 2022, the French energy company Total was involved in the Arctic LNG 2 project, but after the start of the Russian military offensive in Ukraine, Total withdrew. Nowatek controls 60 percent of the project, partner companies are CNPC and CNOOC from China and Japan Arctic LNG.

Arctic LNG 2 is one of the most important projects in Putin’s plan to create a northern shipping route between Asia and Europe. This was made possible by climate change and the melting of glaciers in the Arctic. Moscow hopes that over time the route will rival the Suez Canal as a way of transporting oil and gas.

100,000 Russian soldiers? “That’s just not true”

8:29 p.m.: The Ukrainian army caused a stir a few days ago when it spoke of a large new Russian front near the city of Kupyansk. The Ukrainian Deputy Ministry of Defense had also confirmed the observation. There was talk of 100,000 soldiers and 900 tanks. But now there are doubts about it.

Political scientist Nico Lange comes across “t-online‘ to the assessment that the numbers were greatly exaggerated. “This fabricated number of 100,000 soldiers and 900 tanks cannot be verified in any way using satellite images,” says Lange. “That’s just not true and I don’t know who publishes such figures for any reason,” he says.

Hank Peter

Learn More →

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *