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Ukrainians Fly EU Flag In Kherson To Celebrate Russian Retreat

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A regional official has confirmed that the Ukrainian flag has been raised Friday over the contested city of Kherson, two days after Russian forces commander Gen. Sergei Surovikin announced a major withdrawal of his troops in a surprise admission being interpreted internationally as a major strategic defeat in the south.

Reuters has cited Ukrainian regional lawmaker Serhiy Khlan to say the “final stage of reclaiming the west bank of the Dnipro River in the southern Kherson region” is underway, after Russian forces moved to the opposite side in a draw down from the city. The flag of the European Union was also seen raised alongside the Ukrainian flag over the city’s central administrative building, with photos widely circulating on social media.

Gen. Surovikin had earlier in the week said that all civilians who wanted to evacuate, which the Russian side has estimated at 115,000 people, have been successfully brought to the left bank. This as Ukrainian forces had reportedly reclaimed dozens of settlements in the southern area while moving toward Kherson.

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The Ukrainians are meanwhile alleging that not all Russian soldiers have fled the city but are instead changing into civilian clothing in order to hide within. 

Without citing evidence, a spokesperson for the Ukrainian military’s southern command told a press briefing that Russian troops “have been changing into civilian clothes for two weeks,” but that “the number of these people is not known.” According to further military statements

He cautioned that many Russian troops “threw away their military uniforms, and are now hiding with civilian clothes on.”“They will be plotting provocations, false-flag operations in the city,” he said. “There is a lot of work ahead on de-mining and clearing the city.”

The Kremlin has remained silent on the rapidly unfolding events around Kherson, other than saying it has completed the Kherson withdrawal. There was some speculation earlier in the week even from Kiev officials over the possibility that the Russians were staging a trap by announcing a false withdrawal. But widely circulating footage of columns of Ukrainian troops marching into the city appear to confirm a total Russian retreat…

The aforementioned Ukrainian regional official, Serhiy Khlan, described the situation around the Dnipro further, “Our Armed Forces, under a fierce onslaught, destroyed most of the Russians who were fleeing like rats to the left (eastern) bank of the Dnipro.” He added: “They were fleeing along the pontoons they had built under Antonivskyi bridge, leaving their equipment behind. Many Russians have drowned.”

Shelling and explosions have continued to be reported amid the movement of Russian troops to the opposite bank of the river. The Ukrainians also say they are sustaining fire on Russian positions.

“Now since our Armed Forces have actually taken control of the right-bank [western] part of the Kherson region, we can keep the left-bank [eastern] part of Kherson region under fire control, up to the Crimean isthmus,” Khlan said.

Crowds have continued to congregate downtown to celebrate Ukrainian forces re-entering after over seven months since Russian troops asserted control over the strategic city…

The retreating Russian forces are said to be destroying critical infrastructure as they pull out, with CNN reporting, “On Friday the main bridge across the Dnipro River linking Kherson city to the eastern part of the region was destroyed, which would make any attempts by the Ukrainians to pursue fleeing Russians across the river more difficult.”

Below: map of Ukraine-Russian lines in eastern and southern Ukraine as of Nov.9, via CNN.

Globally this is being seen as a huge blow to President Putin’s war aims. Additionally a total Ukrainian retaking of Kherson puts its missile systems, many which have been supplied by the US and NATO countries, within reach of nearby Crimea.

This post was originally published at Zero Hedge

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World at War

Jordan Peterson Calls For Regime Change in Iran

To fight “misogyny”.

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Jordan Peterson has called on the west to embark on regime change in Iran to fight “misogyny”.

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Video: Belarusian Tennis Star Calls Out Sports Reporters For “Dragging Players Into” Ukraine Conflict Talk

“I don’t know what’s the goal here that it’s continuously brought up.”

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Belarusian tennis star Victoria Azarenka has called out sports reporters for continually asking players questions about the Russia/Ukraine conflict, noting “I don’t know what you guys want us to do about it.”

Azarenka was speaking during a press conference after a recent match at the Australian open, when she lost patience with journalists asking question after question about pro-Russia protests by some at the event, and accused the reporters of continuously “dragging players into” political issues.

“I don’t know what you guys want us to do about it,” Azarenka asserted, adding “Like talk about it? I don’t know what’s the goal here that it’s continuously brought up.”

The former world number one continued, “These incidents that, in my opinion, have nothing to do with players, but somehow you keep dragging players into it. So what’s the goal here?”

“I think you should ask yourself that question, not me,” she sternly added.

Azarenka also stated that whatever she says will be twisted by the reporters to suit their own narrative anyway, so why should she bother.

“Whatever the answer I’m going to give it to you right now, it’s going to be turned whichever way you want to turn it to,” the tennis star urged, adding “So does it bother me? What bothers me is there’s real things that’s going on in the world. And I don’t know. Are you a politician? Are you? Are you covering politics?” she rhetorically asked the sports reporter.

“I’m an athlete,” Azarenka further proclaimed, adding “and you’re asking me about things that maybe somebody says are in my control, but I don’t believe that. So I don’t know what you want me to answer. And if it’s a provocative question, then, you know, you can spin the story however you want.”

“Obviously it’s a topic you want to continue to bring up and up and up again,” Azarenka charged, telling the reporters “I don’t know what you want me to say.”

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Azarenka is correct, there is a sustained effort by reporters, even non-politics reporters to involve sports personalities in narratives centred around the ‘current thing’ they obsessively use to sell newspapers and garner clicks.

Novak Djokovic has been repeatedly subject to such treatment, with tennis officials also guilty of dragging politics into the sport.

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    World at War

    Former UK Defense Minister Says NATO May Need To Send Ground Forces To Ukraine

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    The “domino theory” was once used to great effect in order to manipulate the American public into supporting the Vietnam War, but will the same narrative work to get the west to support World War III with Russia? 

    Former UK Defense Minister Sir Gerald Howarth seems to think so as he uses this exact claim to justify NATO boots on the ground in Ukraine. 

    It should be noted that a large percentage of the American populace and most of Europe have no interest whatsoever in engaging with Russia and possibly its allies in all out war, but the establishment appears intent on forcing the issue anyway.  The delivery of NATO tanks and the possibility of longer range missiles will no doubt trigger a wider response from Russia, which will then be used by NATO as a reason to escalate further. 

    At the very least, Howarth does admit what many in the alternative media have been saying for some time – That Ukraine’s efforts have ground to a halt without further support from NATO troops.  The deliveries of money and weapons are nothing more than a stop-gap; wars are won by men. 

    The former minister suggests that Ukraine is essentially too big to fail and that NATO cannot allow Russia to prevail in the region, otherwise they will be emboldened to strike other nearby nations.  There is zero evidence to support this argument, but it is clear that NATO talking heads are desperate to drum up some kind of public fervor. 

    Are western citizens willing to fight and die for Ukraine?  It’s highly unlikely. 

    This post was originally published at Zero Hedge

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