Ukraine: Daily Briefing – March 4, 2019, 7 PM Kyiv time

Ukraine: Daily Briefing
March 4, 2019, 7 PM Kyiv time
UNIFIER training Photo forces.gc.ca
1. Russian Invasion of Ukraine
Ukraine’s Ministry of Defense reported at 12:30 PM Kyiv time that on March 3, one Ukrainian service member was wounded in action. In the last 24 hours, Russian-terrorist forces opened fire nine times on Ukrainian positions on the Luhansk and Donetsk sectors, using heavy weapons in 10 instances.
The Ukrainian military confirmed that on March 2 and 1 the Russian-terrorist forces opened fire 12 times on Ukrainian positions in the Luhansk and Donetsk sectors, including six times using heavy weapons. Unfortunately, two service members of Ukrainian Armed Forces were wounded in action on Friday and Saturday last week.
The press centre of Ukraine’s Joint Forces Operation released the intelligence report saying that three invaders were killed and three were wounded as a result of returning fire by the Ukrainian Armed Forces on Friday, February 15.
2. Canadian Monitoring Mission Returning to Ukraine for Presidential Elections
Photo – Oleg Petrasiuk
Today’s Kyiv Post features the story of a Canadian of Ukrainian origin Natalia Toroshenko from Alberta, Canada, who didn’t hesitate to come to Ukraine as CANADEM’s long-term observers to monitor the presidential election in Ukraine as well as the explanation of mission objectives by the Deputy Head of the Observers Mission Olga Odynska-Grod.
The article goes on to explain the mandate of the mission, the candidate selection criteria, the logistics and planning behind the mission. The mission officials believe the observers are crucial to preserving Ukraine’s ability to conduct a democratic and fair election in the face of Russian efforts to destabilize the country. During her interview Toroshenko said that she had witnessed improvements in the democratic process in Ukraine “with each election, whether presidential, parliamentary, or municipal.”
Read more here
3. Russia Plans to Disrupt Elections in Ukraine – OSINT Group
Picture – jake creps
Russian special services plan to use agents from among the residents of the occupied territories to provoke tensions at polling stations during the presidential elections in Ukraine. This was reported by the ex-operative of Ukraine’s military intelligence Yuriy Smishchuk and ex-officer of the Spec-Ops Forces Vyacheslav Protopopov to Ukrainian media.
According to the ex-operatives the recruited agents by the ‘LPR’s so-called Ministry of Civil Defense.’ are instructed to stage provocative situations at polling stations, which will be covered in the media and give the impression of alleged falsification, non-transparency of elections, their illegality, and alleged violations of the rights of internally displaced persons (IDPs).
OSINT groups expect such provocations to take place throughout Ukraine focusing on regions bordering with the occupied territories, the central part of Ukraine, and the city of Kyiv.
4. Kolga and Gold: How the Kremlin Distorts the Past to Divide Us
Marcus Kolga Photo – Macdonald-Laurier Institute
Today’s Ottawa Citizen features an article by Marcus Kolga and Gosh Gold calling on the readers to remain “aware of and reject any attempts to cynically take advantage of historical issues by those who seek to divide our communities within Canada and to influence Canada’s foreign policy towards NATO and nations in Central and Eastern Europe.” This article is offered as a rebuttal to Feb. 25 David Pugliesi’s blog in the Citizen.
“Distortion of historical narratives and the use of “fascist” labels were cynically employed as an instrument of Soviet propaganda throughout the Cold War. Anyone who resisted or criticized the Soviet regime or its policies in the West was at risk of being branded a “fascist” in efforts to discredit them. Such tactics weren’t only limited to human rights and political activists; many Canadian ethnic groups who fled the Soviet Union were so labelled, in efforts to marginalize their voices and their impact on national debates,” contemplate Kolga and Gold.
The authors explain that the Soviet Union has been using the word “fascist” throughout the Cold War against anyone who resisted or criticized the Soviet regime to marginalize their opinions; Vladimir Putin has been employing this tactic since the early 2000s threatening to set communities against each other. Kremlin, however, continues to extend support to right- and left-wing extremist organizations in Europe, which represents a serious threat to the existing international rules-based order.
The authors remind that Kremlin “…itself a serial abuser of human rights and free speech” has outlawed public advocacy for LGBTQ rights, let the national media flood with anti-Semitism and let its propagandist portray the 2014 Ukrainian Revolution of Dignity as “Zionist” in order to discredit it.
“Any attempts to use history and these victims to drive wedges between Canadian communities or to erode trust in Canada’s trans-Atlantic relations should be viewed with skepticism,” caution the authors.
Read more here
Notably, in January 2019, Marcus Kolga has released his latest “Stemming the Virus: Understanding and responding to the threat of Russian disinformation” report

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