Ukraine War Day #279: A Mother’s Grief, Part II

ἀμήχανον δὲ παντὸς ἀνδρὸς ἐκμαθεῖνIt’s impossible to really know a man, to know his soul,
ψυχήν τε καὶ φρόνημα καὶ γνώμην, πρὶν ἂνhis mind and will, before one witnesses
ἀρχαῖς τε καὶ νόμοισιν ἐντριβὴς φανῇ.his skill in governing and making laws.
ἐμοὶ γὰρ ὅστις πᾶσαν εὐθύνων πόλινFor me, a man who rules the entire state
μὴ τῶν ἀρίστων ἅπτεται βουλευμάτωνand does not take the best advice there is,
ἀλλ᾽ ἐκ φόβου του γλῶσσαν ἐγκλῄσας ἔχειbut through fear keeps his mouth forever shut,
κάκιστος εἶναι νῦν τε καὶ πάλαι δοκεῖ:such a man is the very worst of men— and always will be.
καὶ μεῖζον ὅστις ἀντὶ τῆς αὑτοῦ πάτραςAnd a man who thinks more highly of a friend than of his country,
φίλον νομίζει, τοῦτον οὐδαμοῦ λέγω.well, he means nothing to me.
ἐγὼ γάρ, ἴστω Ζεὺς ὁ πάνθ᾽ ὁρῶν ἀεί,Let Zeus know, the god who always watches everything,
οὔτ᾽ ἂν σιωπήσαιμι τὴν ἄτην ὁρῶνI would not stay silent if I saw disaster
στείχουσαν ἀστοῖς ἀντὶ τῆς σωτηρίας,moving here against the citizens, a threat to their security.
οὔτ᾽ ἂν φίλον ποτ᾽ ἄνδρα δυσμενῆ χθονὸςFor anyone who acts against the state, its enemy, I’d never make my friend.
θείμην ἐμαυτῷ, τοῦτο γιγνώσκων ὅτιFor I know well our country is a ship which keeps us safe,
ἥδ᾽ ἐστὶν ἡ σῴζουσα καὶ ταύτης ἔπιand only when it sails its proper course do we make friends.
πλέοντες ὀρθῆς τοὺς φίλους ποιούμεθα.These are the principles I’ll use in order to protect our state.
Sophocles: Antigone

Dear Readers,

As the Ukrainian war ever more resembles a Greek tragedy, one starts to wish fervently, if only there was a magic button to push, then a Machine would descend onto the stage, and a God’s authoritative voice, speaking from the Machine, would just fix everything. Maybe even bring the dead back to life. Lowering their masks, the resurrected soldiers would bow to the audience, proving that it was all just a show. And then embrace one another, as brothers are supposed to do. [Except for Azov soldiers, they would stay dead.]

No Power On Earth Like A Jewish Mother

This piece by reporter Andrei Rezchikov, is a continuation of his previous piece, and also features that same bereaved mom Maria Kostiuk. Kostiuk, a political leader in her own right, albeit from a region very distant from the centers of power (=Birobidzhan Jewish Autonomy) looks to be emerging as the natural leader of the Soldiers’ Moms. [Despite my little joke we do not know if she is actually Jewish or just plain Slavic.] Either way, Maria is eloquent; she possesses some political power, determination, and access to Putin. In this segment she speaks out against Ukrainian disinformation campaigns and muses about her plan to organize a political lobby for soldiers and their families. Working and fighting in this manner, will keep Maria occupied and give her life, as well as her son’s death, a new purpose. Putin needs to watch out for this one: She will hold him accountable.

“Ma’am, I need you to step away from the body. We’re just enforcing the Minsk Accords.”

Speaking of which, I saw this piece, on RT of all places. And it’s in English, so you don’t need my help in reading it. I like that Putin mans up and takes responsibility for the excess deaths caused by his long-standing inertia, his failure to react decisively and properly to the Ukrainian military build-up:

“There might not have been so many casualties among civilians, there would not be so many children killed,” the Russian leader suggested. He maintained, however, that back in 2014, Russia did not have a full understanding of the situation in Donbass or of the true sentiments of the locals.

“[We] believed that we might still be able to reach an agreement and … reunify Donetsk and Lugansk with Ukraine within … the Minsk Agreements,” 

Russia did not have a full understanding?? That sentence made me want to reach through my computer tube and grab Putin by his throat. Why is it that even I, a dumb blogger, could see all of this so clearly, even back in 2015? And I have the receipts to prove it. My goodness, Macron and Merkel, and those other NATO snakes gaslighted the man for 8 years and pulled the wool over his eyes, all the while buying Poroshenko, and then Zelensky, more time to build up one of the mightiest armies on the European continent! And all the time shelling the shit out of the Russian speakers of Donbass and depriving Crimeans of fresh water. How many ordinary people, how many children, would still be alive if only…

How does that saying go, “Whom the gods make blind… ?”

Maria’s Ideas

Nonetheless let us return to our piece and read more about Maria, about her plan for building a sustainable organization to mediate between the blind and stupid government; and the families who carry the brunt of this war.

Maria is on a crusade against the ЦИПсО (pronounced “Tsipso“). I kept hearing this word on Russian social media and didn’t have a clue what it meant, until I finally figured out it was the acronym for something called the Ukrainian Center for Informational-Psychological Operations. Psy-ops, in other words. NATO Psy-ops against Russia.

Maria: Just by chance, I raised this issue during my meeting with the President on Friday. The Russian Ministry of Defense is duty-bound to counter-act the activities of Tsipso. Back in my region, we know whose children are out there fighting in the Special Military Operation, therefore we are able to support their relatives if they happen to come into contact with the Tsipso. Their activities have become a problem affecting the entire country.

Maria wants to organize a committee of families of warriors fighting for the Fatherland. Founding organizations include “The Women of Russia”, “Union of Soldiers Families”, “Union of the Women of Russia”, and “Russian Mothers”. Besides Maria, one of the key organizers of this project is Julia Belekhova. Like Maria, Julia is a political leader, she heads the Moscow regional fraction of the National Front, and she also met with Putin on Friday. Julia and Maria will work together to form the kind of organization that can counteract the pro-Ukrainian propaganda and fakes, not to mention extortion scams, issuing from the criminals who work for Tsipso.

Maria: “When my Andriusha perished, I knew that his heroic act would be downgraded in the public space, people would try to nullify his death and make it meaningless. I was aware of the activities of Tsipso, but even I didn’t realize that it would get to that level. In social media I received hundreds of negative messages about my son, along with threats against his younger sister.

Antigone’s family: Torn apart by fratricide.

“These hate-messages threw me into a panic. I was filled with fear. I had gone through so much, and I was not able to cope psychologically with this kind of pressure. Well, there is no way to escape from this sort of negativity, therefore we just need to put up some barriers, we need to deal rather harshly with these sorts of provocations in the informational space. The scariest thing is that some of these people actually live nearby, I saw residents of the Jewish Autonomy participating in these online skirmishes.”

Maria described to Putin how Tsipso and other organizations tagged as “foreign agents” try to play on the emotions of the mothers of soldiers. They push all the buttons, play on their nervousness and anxiety, rub salt in the most painful wounds. Their intent is to convince the mothers to convince their sons to abandon their posts at the front. They urge the sons to defect to the other side, promising the mothers to return either the son alive, or his corpse intact. “Some of the mamas fall for their tricks, even give them their son’s telephone number; and if he happens to have his mobile turned on at the time, they can latch onto his signal and send a rocket onto his location. Or, they have a girl engage him in a chat, the girl flirts with him, learns his location, where his unit is located. And, once again, a rocket!”

Among other stupid things it does, Tsipso creates lame anti-Russia memes like these.

The relatives of Russian soldiers are under enormous pressure. Pro-Ukrainian social media bombard them with fakes: photographs and sometimes fake documentation alleging that their loved one is in Ukrainian captivity; and that the Russian military is trying to hide this fact from them. The goal is to drive the person into a panic; in which case he or she becomes even more susceptible to psychological manipulation. Maria: “This is where we can be of help, myself and those who think like me. We can help to authenticate whatever information they have received, and most of the time we can prove to them that nothing bad has happened to their loved one.”

The Ukrainian 72nd Center of Informational-Psychological Operations (Tsipso) was founded in 2004. During the past few years it has operated exclusively in the field of anti-Russia propaganda. Its main task is to create psyops diversions against the Russian enemy. Prior to the Special Military Operation it mostly engaged in over-the-telephone cons and money-extracting scams. A hacker from the group RaHDIt once revealed, anonymously, to the Russian press, that Ukraine actually has four such centers. The main one, the 72nd, used to be located in Brovary (Kiev region), until it was eliminated by a Russian rocket attack early in the war. The 83rd Center is in Odessa, the 74th in Lvov, and the 16th in Zhitomir. Reporter Rezchikov ends his piece by pointing out that these Tsipso specialists have all been trained by foreign specialists, in their dark arts of Information-Diversion and Psy-Ops manipulations.

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25 Responses to Ukraine War Day #279: A Mother’s Grief, Part II

  1. S Brennan says:

    The Great thinkers of DC [and other small minds] are under the impression that they can “win” wars with propaganda…after all they gained their position in life through lies fraud and deceit, surely just few more lies will do the trick in international relations…yes? Well no, scions of DC, as one wag put it, high school is over and sophomoric tactics will only lead to greater tragedy in Ukrainia [and Syria..and Libya..and..] well you get the point.

    All propaganda does, in the end, is convince the side losing side to fight longer than any cognisant being would; propaganda only prolongs the time before the losing side sues for the cessation of war. Nazi propaganda was the best of WW II and it failed it’s objective miserably but, it did prolong the war by a year or so costing 5-10,000,000 people their lives. Yes, that is the bang for the buck.

    In this case, as in all the US wars since Korea…ever since the CIA was stood-up, the American mind is filled with media lies*. And those who see through the fraud best keep their voice down, lest, as one sitting US Senator PUBLICLY threatened the President of the United States, the 3LA’s will exact revenge…just as they did in on that clear day in Dallas in 1963.


  2. BM says:

    pointing out that these Tsipso specialists have all been trained by foreign specialists

    – In other words MI6, that most depraved and degenerate mafia of idiots, adorers of evil, specialists in the proliferation of evil.


  3. stephentjohnson says:

    Hmm…. it’s interesting to see what we may reasonably call green shoots or buds of an effective pro-Russian propaganda system beginning to flourish. Ramzan Kadyrov may no longer have to struggle alone (well, Medvedev, too, now, what a volte-face, eh?) – a patriotic organisation of soldier’s mothers are an ideal group to help grind down Banderist propaganda in the Russian public sphere. Sort of an ongoing immortal regiment.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. BM says:

    Just to be clear, the meeting with mothers covered in this and the previous article was not just a meeting with mothers of soldiers who have been killed in the fighting, but also mothers of soldiers currently fighting, and mothers of soldiers seriously wounded. It was a meeting in celebration of Mothers Day. RT published a good article on the day of the meeting (Friday).

    There is also a very interesting article on the meeting by former Indian diplomat Bhadrakhumar, What to expect in Russia’s winter offensive in Ukraine.

    Isn’t it incredible that some soldier on the frontline might suddenly and unexpectedly receive a telephone call from the President of Russia, asking for first hand reports of what is going on, and sometimes even with his wife also on the line!?

    I suspect this must be using military communication lines rather than normal telephones, though, otherwise the Ukies can use the signal to launch a rocket; the Russian soldiers are strictly prohibited from using mobile phones on the frontline – although the Bhadrakumar article implies that this rule is sometimes broken, with fatal consequences.


    • Liborio Guaso says:

      It is curious on the other side, the candidates for mercenaries must talk about how much they will be paid to kill or be killed and if it is worth taking the risk. The mother doesn’t matter.


    • yalensis says:

      I had read in previous articles that Russian soldiers are on the front lines are strictly prohibited from having a personal phone, they have to hand them in to their recruiting officer the moment they are drafted. But the “mothers” article seems to imply that some of their sons do actually have phones.
      The only way to reconcile these two contradictory facts:
      I suspect some of the soldiers have found way to smuggle in a phone to the front!

      Which is exactly what I would do, if I were a soldier. But hopefully I wouldn’t be so dumb as to turn on the GPS function.


      • BM says:

        But hopefully I wouldn’t be so dumb as to turn on the GPS function.

        Oh dear that’s bad news! Then you’d indeed quickly be vapourised, because the Ukie’s don’t need the GPS signal to locate you – all they need is the triangulation from mobile phone towers (and that does not need to be set in your phone as a “location method” either)!

        [Well, OK, having your phone number as well seems to be important, at least according to the transcript of the meeting, but I suspect that can be dispensed with if you have a map of active mobile phone terminals, and you know where your own forces are and roughly where the enemy forces might be.]


  5. Here in central Europe, the so-called land of democratic values such as–
    • Being allowed to engage meaningfully in open dialogue and debate;
    • Have access to relevant and objective information so that your views are informed;
    • A free press and access to information from differing sources;
    –they block any access to,, is BLOCKED 😦 😦
    What assholes! This is of course done by pressure from Washington, with eager lap-dog assistance from Brussels. So no–USA and Europe are not democracies; to the contrary they are places of censorship, lies propaganda and cancel culture. USA SUCKS!


    • yalensis says:

      I live in USA. When SMO first started they blocked RT from American internet. But that only lasted a few weeks, and then I could see it again. I don’t know what that means. In fact, I think I can see just about anything now. Sounds like Europe is more censored even than U.S., which is very strange.


  6. Bilaal Abdullah says:

    It seems there should be 3 more missiles with TSIPSO’s name on them 🙂


  7. Yalensis: In measured defense of Comrade Putin, I refer you to the “Travels with a Reformer” of Mark Twain — in which the unnamed reformer cites the example (I think) of a railway official who through carelessness causes some great disaster, and concludes that the offender should not be removed from his post but kept at all cost, on the grounds that he will never be careless again. I’m pretty sure that experience has reformed Putin’s flaws.

    Besides, anybody so hated by the screeching carrion birds of the West must be doing something right.


  8. the pair says:

    as soon as i read putin’s quote i had a reaction very similar to yours. “i’m a yank with a goddamn high school diploma and i knew what was going on from 2014”. funny how the “NPCs” who imbibe western nonsense think putin is “literully teh hitlur” yet people who follow the events (and make use of online russian speakers) think he’s too cautious and soft. typical lawyer, amirite?

    your title made me think of an old joke about jewish mothers (popular among israelis):

    a mother is saying goodbye to her son as he heads to the front lines of a battle…

    “now, my son – don’t forget to eat and sleep whenever you can! kill your enemy, then when they’re all dead sit down and eat! kill the next group of enemies then have a restful sleep!”

    “but mum….what if the enemy comes and kills me when i sleep?”

    “OH MY GOD!!! why would anyone want to KILL MY BABY?!?!?!?”

    a corny old joke but it sums up a specific mentality quite well.


  9. peter moritz says:

    All is lost, Ukraine has almost won already, which is a problem for the USA..
    Hey, that is a deep analysis from a distinguished prof, who surely knows his stuff… surely?
    “Ukraine’s Victories May Become a Problem for the US”


  10. Daniel Rich says:

    I feel for the Russian mothers that have lost their sons. I’m not a religious man, so I don’t care about what tribe follows what rule.

    Russian men fight and die, so I can sit behind my computer screen and rant on and on and on.

    I respect their sacrifice, very much so…


  11. WJ says:

    I think Putin is being less than honest there. He probably knew all along but was not ready for war with the combined west. Russia might have crumbled under such economic pressure in 2014.


  12. Daniel Rich says:

    ‘No Power On Earth Like That Of A Mother’ I don’t think it’s wise to focus on a single section of society and leave the rest out.


  13. gepay says:

    one thing it is important to remember is that in 2014 the Russian economy was not ready for the Western economic warfare. It could stand the sanctions for incorporating Crimea but not much more. I imagine the Russian military would have had a much easier time as the Ukrainian army was in disarray – basically defeated by the Donbas militias and elements of the Ukrainian Army that had switched sides. If the Minsk agreements that were signed by Ukraine had been implemented then it would have been agreeable for Russia to have turned down. While Ukraine used the 8 years to rebuild its army and continue killing Donbas civilians, Russia did use the time to reorder its economy such that it is winning the economic war as well as the military one.


    • yalensis says:

      That’s all well and good, assuming it was all part of the master plan; and not just some dumb thinking, like Putin actually trusting that she-snake Merkel!


      • gepay says:

        It was not a master plan. The Minsk agreements if implemented in good faith would have satisfied the Russians for a good while. However I would guess that the Kremlin group knew they could not at that time fight the Western economic power that could destroy their economy. Putin has said the US is not agreement capable. Covid happened. I think the Russian biotech world is part of the 5th column Atlantiscists in Russia. Even Cuba which has a very competent medical establishment has gone along with the mainstream medical paradigm on Covid as they have on HIV. There are many elements in the US and for sure the WEF who want to have WW3 happen. Even with many provocations Russia has shown great restraint in not over reacting.g


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