Here a few highlights from the last couple days. First, a Ukrainian unit was sent to the Donetsk Airport with instructions to transport their wounded out of the terminal - thinking their forces still controlled it. This is the same terminal that has been under the control of Donetsk battalions for a week. Only upon encountering "Givi's" ambush did they realize they'd been sent like lambs to the slaughter, probably as a distraction in order for tanks to encircle the airport - tanks that were destroyed by Donetsk forces. As J. Hawk writes for Fort Russ, "It's one thing for Kiev TV stations to continue claiming the airport is held by Ukrainian formations. It's something else altogether for local commanders to not know what the situation on the ground is." The video below of Givi and Motorola with the POWs is priceless.
an article with a link to him threatening to personally kill any journalists he sees in the village of Sands). This is the same surly man visible in the video of Motorola's infamous handshake with the 'commander' of the 93rd Brigade, callsign "Kupol", back in December. Motorola, injured, had been ordered to meet with the Ukrainians in control of the terminal at the time in order to effect a troop rotation for the Ukrainians holed up in the New Terminal, monitored by the OSCE. (Was Kupol really the commander? He's clearly taking orders for Mikats in the video. It's possible Kupol was replaced by Mikats - the handshake prompted soldiers of the 93rd to sign a petition to remove Kupol from his post for sullying his pure Ukrainian hands by touching the "bandit" Motorola.) You can watch the video of the 'dirty handshake' here. Here's Mikats the 'negotiator' from that encounter, in the red circle.
Donetsk's prime minister, Alexandr Zakharchenko, gave a press conference on the results of the fighting over the past two days. As usual, Kiev is denying any heavy casualties, this despite the fact that they've lost hundreds of men, including an entire tank company (around 200 men) in a single day, and an entire infantry company (around 100, nearly all killed). For the few that survived and the bodies of those killed, Zakharchenko is allowing their families to claim them without having to wait for an official prisoner exchange. Following up on his offer to negotiate with Poroshenko in the Donetsk Airport, Zakharchenko had this to say:
Esteemed Mr. President, I summoned you to the airport. There is a certain distance from the airport to Kiev, but from Peski the distance is shorter. I will summon you again from Peski. Every time we take a new town I will tell you how many kilometers to your residence. I don't know how long this continue, but our meeting will take place, I promise you that.Now Poroshenko is between a rock and a hard place: continue sending out his troops as cannon fodder, or negotiate a real ceasefire, in which case he will be at the mercy of the "true patriots" (i.e., Nazis) that want war, war, and more war.
Here are some highlights from the press conference: