Putin’s aides seek revenge for attacks on military airports

Two air bases (Engels-2 and Dyagilevo) in Russia were hit by airstrikes on Monday morning. There were three dead and several broken bombers. There is now a heated discussion in Russia as to why these strikes could not be prevented. After all, the bases are hundreds of kilometers from Ukraine. The military bloggers in particular are in an uproar.

As the US Institute for the Study of War (ISW) writes, the bloggers criticize the Russian authorities for not foreseeing and preventing such an attack. These omissions would be all the more serious because the Russians knew perfectly well that these strategically important military airports were suitable targets for the Ukrainians to attack.

The military bloggers complain that military officials are not taking their warnings seriously and that the attacks could have been prevented if someone listened to them. Now the powerful war correspondents are demanding revenge for these attacks. One of them even writes that Russia’s legitimacy as a nuclear power is under threat. Eventually, jets capable of carrying nuclear warheads would have been damaged at the air force base. According to the blogger, the attack would even justify a nuclear counterstrike under Russian law.

For President Vladimir Putin and his propaganda, the war-believing military bloggers are extremely important. At the same time, Putin has been in trouble for a long time because military bloggers have massively criticized the army apparatus. The Ministry of Defense and the Russian army are too hesitant about waging the war, it is said again and again.

Russia continues to abduct children from occupied territories

Russian officials continue to kidnap Ukrainian children from the occupied regions of Luhansk and Donetsk to Russia on the pretext that the children need special medical care. This is reported by the “Institute for the Study of War” with reference to a telegram contribution by the Russian-appointed Luhansk regional administrator, Leonid Pasechnik. In it he writes: “With the help of United Russia (the country’s largest party, editor’s note) we continue to send children injured in the war to Sochi for rehabilitation. Another group of children was sent today.” Eleven other boys and girls were also taken to Moscow for medical treatment.

Furthermore, officials of the party and the Kremlin provided the population in Luhansk with jackets, warm blankets and thermal underwear and generally gave them “enormous help”, according to Pasechnik.

Ukrainian energy supplier warns of nationwide power cuts after new attacks

After the renewed wave of Russian attacks, the Ukrainian energy supplier Ukrenergo warned of nationwide power cuts on Monday. Due to the consequences of the shelling and in order to “maintain the balance between electricity production and consumption”, emergency shutdowns would be introduced in all regions of Ukraine, the state-owned electricity supplier Ukrenergo announced on the online channel Telegram. Important infrastructure facilities would be supplied with electricity as a matter of priority.

“The situation is difficult, but under control,” it said. Some power plants may temporarily not run at full power. “Combined with the increasing frost in the coming 24 hours, this will lead to an electricity deficit in the system,” explained Ukrenergo. The necessary repairs were in progress.

Kyiv indirectly confirms attacks

The Ukrainian air force indirectly confirmed the attacks on the two Russian military airfields on Monday evening. Two photos were also published on Telegram showing a damaged Russian bomber and a damaged truck in front of an apparently hit plane. The authenticity of the images could not be verified.

Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court against special tribunal on Ukraine

The chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague has spoken out against the establishment of a special tribunal to punish Russian crimes in Ukraine. This could “undermine” the work of the ICC, Chief Prosecutor Karim Khan warned in The Hague on Monday. “We should avoid fragmentation and work towards unification instead.”

He called on the international community to support and fund the ICC’s investigations. “We must not fail. We need the means to do our job. We don’t have those funds,” Khan said. Since Russia does not recognize the ICC, the court can investigate alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity in Ukraine. But he cannot take action against Moscow for the crime of aggression.

That is why EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen proposed a special tribunal to punish “Russian crimes” in Ukraine last week. The EU also justified the move by saying that heads of state like Russian President Vladimir Putin would enjoy immunity from prosecution by the ICC.

Khan now contradicted this: The ICC member states could find ways to allow the court to prosecute a third country. The EU also “misrepresented” the law on immunity.

Also read: The Ukraine update on December 5th