Permalink First Batch of US-Made Abrams Tanks Arrive in Ukraine

The tanks are armed with toxic depleted uranium ammunition | Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Monday that the first batch of US-made Abrams tanks have arrived in Ukraine, which are armed with toxic depleted uranium (DU) ammunition. [...] US officials confirmed the arrival in comments to The New York Times, saying they were the first of 31 tanks Ukraine would receive and that more would be delivered in the coming months. They said so far, Ukraine has received two tank platoons, which puts the number of Abrams between eight and 10.  The US is supplying Ukraine with refurbished M1A1 Abrams, an older variant of the tank. When the Biden administration first announced it would arm Ukraine with Abrams, they promised new M1A2 tanks, but they needed to be manufactured and would have taken years to be delivered, so the Pentagon chose to send older tanks to speed up the timeline.

US tanks will be ‘destroyed’ in Ukraine – ambassador (01/25/23)

Permalink Nord Stream Blast: Why the West Still Can't Name the Culprit

Exactly a year ago three out of four Nord Stream pipelines running from Russia to Germany under the Baltic Sea to provide Western Europe with natural gas were destroyed. Western investigators have so far failed to find the saboteurs behind the blast. | Gas leaks from the Nord Stream pipeline system were detected on 26 September 2022, with the EU leadership admitting that this could be the result of a "deliberate attack".  Two days later, on 28 September, the Kremlin announced that Russia was ready to consider applications from EU countries for a joint investigation into the Nord Stream incident. However, not only did the West snub Moscow's request but also blamed Russia for destroying its own pipelines. Later, European and American officials backtracked on their accusations but fell short of naming a potential perpetrator.  On 12 October 2022, Russian President Vladimir Putin called the incident "an act of international terrorism". Meanwhile, as gas prices soared and US energy producers secured lucrative liquefied natural gas (LNG) contracts with European countries, it became clear that Washington had been the major beneficiary from the Nord Stream destruction. Furthermore, the US leadership had previously issued several threats that it would destroy the pipelines. 💬 "We know that the United States President Joe Biden, threatened openly that he would stop Nord Stream 2 if the Russians were to militarily intervene in Ukraine," Philip Giraldi, former CIA station chief and now an executive director of the Council for the National Interest, told Sputnik. "That was repeated by Victoria Nuland, who was Number Three at the State Department. She said basically the same thing. So we had the President and a senior official both saying that they would stop the pipeline if this were to happen. So we have a statement coming from the government itself saying it would do this." On 8 February 2023, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh dropped a bombshell, detailing an apparent plot by Team Biden and the US intelligence community to blast the Nord Stream pipelines with the help of Norwegian operatives. Reflecting on Hersh's version, Giraldi said that he feels that Hersh's narrative is "correct in every detail."

Denmark refusing to engage on Nord Stream probe – Moscow (RT.com)
West ‘not so eager to find out’ who bombed Nord Stream – WaPo (RT.com)
US media leaks on Nord Stream sabotage intended only to confuse — Russian embassy (TASS)
Nord Stream investigator recalls hidden history of US-Norway covert ops (RT.com)
How America Took Out The Nord Stream Pipeline (Seymour Hersh)

Permalink USAID Chief Power Visits Armenia, Highlights Pashinyan's Ticklish Position

The red carpet welcome at Yerevan's airport for the American officials has not gone unnoticed, emphasizing the delicate position of Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan. | Amidst heightened tensions, the visit of US Agency for International Development (USAID) chief Samantha Power and US State Department acting Assistant Secretary for Europe and Eurasian Affairs Yuri Kim to Armenia has added a new layer of complexity to the evolving dynamics in the region.
This visit marks a significant development, being the first time senior US officials have set foot in Armenia since the ceasefire agreement that ended the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh.  The US Embassy in Armenia released a statement emphasizing their support for Armenia's independence, territorial integrity and democracy. Deputy Foreign Minister Paruyr Hovhannisyan and Minister of Labor and Social Affairs Narek Mkrtchyan extended the warm welcome, showcasing the importance attached to Power and Kim's arrival.

How is the US involved in Armenia? (RT.com)
Russia scrambles as EU surges in Caucasus (M. K. BHADRAKUMAR)
L'Azerbaïdjan agresse le Haut-Karabakh : trahison finale de Pachinian (Karine Bechet-Golovko)

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