The most recent stage of the ongoing propaganda attack against Russia is getting laid on a bit thick today.
Less than 300 trucks are creating a lot of ruckus all over the news.
The Russians say they have put together an aid convoy to help the people in the cities of Donetsk region, in particular Luhansk, that have suffered air raids and artillery attacks by the Kiev forces (that somehow keep not making the news, funny that).
Thousands of refugees fleeing the fighting (didn't Kiev promise a cease fire or six). In steps Russia claiming they are sending aid, food, blankets and all sorts of other stuff that is in desperate need by those driven out of their homes by the fighting.
You would think this was an invasion and the trucks were carrying tanks and an infantry division to listen to the news reporting that is going on. The Russians have released the following to explain what is in the convoy.
What I am seeing in the papers and mainstream media web sites and hearing on the news channels seems to be the following.
They are army trucks painted white:
There are nearly 300 of them, it was probably a lot faster and cheaper for the Russian government to use army trucks than rent an entire fleet of commercial Lorries, what with the Russian economy being under attack right now.
They are being driven by Russian soldiers:
Hello, army trucks!
They are being escorted by the Russian army, its a military convoy.
Hello, did you miss the whole army trucks, army drivers bit. Trucks, generators, fuel, 54 tons of medical supplies, 1500 tons of food and water. This is a significant financial effort, I know I would put guards on it to stop any of it getting lost since its probably not insured.
It’s all a trick by the Russians to solicit support in the area by providing aid.
Really. Would the same apply to the US and UK dropping water and food and tents and medical supplies to the refugees stuck on Sinjar mountain.
This one has more than a grain of truth to it though. The Kiev regime is creating many of the refugees who are in need of help, and failing to provide any such help. So by sending such a convoy Russia is showing that it cares where the official government of the Ukraine does not and as Kiev refuses the convoy permission to cross the border we see who is concerned about the suffering of the refugees and who doesn't.
This is a lose lose situation for Kiev which is only getting worse because they continue to refuse to allow aid to be delivered.
The contents are not aid, it is weapons for the rebels:
Has anyone bothered to look? The original plan as I understood it was to take them to the border and transfer them to red cross trucks but the red cross don't have enough trucks. At this transfer the loads would be inspected, but given that the trucks are canvas sided how hard is it for the Red Cross to, I don't know, maybe pull the canvas aside and look.
Also exactly how hard is it to wander across the border, the Ukrainians keep complaining hordes of Russian soldiers, tanks and missiles have made the trip without anyone managing a single photo. If its that easy why send white painted trucks to invade when tanks can do the invading without anyone noticing until it’s too late.
In an effort to trick people the Russians even allowed some reporters to film some of the trucks being loaded.
Clearly all part of a dastardly plot to fool the peace loving West into allowing the convoy to cross the border.
Oh wait, they can anyway since the separatists control a long section of the border.
The convoy is in Russia, having been told it will not be allowed to enter the Ukraine, ever, under any circumstances, go away, we don't want your stinking aid. But having been refused permission to cross a section of the border controlled by Kiev it has now diverted south and west heading for a long section of the border controlled by Pro Russian separatists.
Despite the shouting there is absolutely nothing Kiev can do to stop the convoy except sending in its air force or trying to launch a ground attack with fast moving armoured vehicles. Given that these lorries are driven by Russian soldiers and the reports that they contain nothing but food, water and medical supplies doing so would be an act of utter stupidity by Kiev.
Which doesn't mean it will not happen, this whole situation is simply the latest round way in which the political and propaganda areas of this cold war are being fought and the more the sabres are rattled the greater the likelihood grows that some one will fire that fateful shot.
So what do I think is going on.
I think this is exactly what it has been described as, a massive good will effort by the Russians to support the Pro Russia peoples of the Eastern Ukraine. Putin has, so far, done nothing stupid with regard to this situation.
He has absolutely no need to send weapons across the border in this way, simply by sending food and aid he can achieve a significant effect.
After all if he wanted to send tanks and missiles and the odd few divisions of soldiers he can simply cross the border where it is controlled by the separatists, he has no need what so ever to sneak weapons across the border, he has no need to paint lorries white as a trick.
In the mean time, will the western media and governments are scoring points and pushing their side, people are going hungry, suffering and dying as a civil war drives them from their homes.
Putin and Russia win this just be sending food, they will be seen to be helping, they will be seen to be the concerned people, they are the ones providing humanitarian support. Which is exactly why we are seeing so much anti Russian propaganda about this convoy. Without having the slightest evidence that there is any problem the white trucks are a threat because they are Russian.
If the convoy makes it across the border and starts to unload 1,800 tons of aid I expect that the story will suddenly vanish from our news. While we are seeing endless repeats of water being unloaded in Iraq I have a strong suspicion that we will not be seeing any images of water and baby food being unloaded from the white trucks.
Because to show that it is simply an aid convoy and not weapons would be a propaganda failure for the west, so it will be forgotten as quickly as the stories about Russians shooting down MH17 vanished when the evidence was proved to be fake.
The Kiev forces either cannot or will not send aid, the EU doesn't seem bothered by the refugee crisis in the eastern Ukraine, certainly not when compared with the significant concern and efforts underway to drop aid to people in far away Iraq.
So what exactly is the difference between aiding the refugees in Iraq who have been driven from their homes by ISIS and aiding the refugees in the Ukraine who have been driven from their homes by Kiev?
Oh yes. ISIS are the bad guys, Kiev is an EU ally.