The Spectator

How do Russian and Ukrainian military forces measure up?

How do Russian and Ukrainian military forces measure up?
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Facing the music

Police in New Zealand played Barry Manilow records to truck drivers in an attempt to persuade them to break up their protests. One of the first uses of music as a weapon was by US forces attempting to force Panamanian military leader and drug dealer General Manuel Noriega to leave the Vatican embassy, where he had sought sanctuary in December 1989. For three days over Christmas they played an eclectic mixture of music including ‘Too Old to Rock’n’Roll, Too Young to Die’ by Jethro Tull, ‘Judgment Day’ by Van Halen, ‘Born to Run’ by Bruce Springsteen, ‘Give It Up’ by KC and the Sunshine Band, ‘We Gotta Get Out Of This Place’ by the Animals and ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’ by Rick Astley. The music stopped after three days following complaints from the Vatican, but Noriega gave himself up on 3 January 1990.

Receding waves

How did Covid-19 infection rates vary by ethnic group between the second (Sept 2020 to May 2021) and third waves (May 2021 to Dec 2021)? Relative infection risk compared with the White British group:

2nd wave

Bangladeshi 2.19

Pakistani 2.17

Indian 1.65

Black African 1.16

Black Caribbean 1.12

Chinese 0.53

3rd wave

Bangladeshi 0.55

Pakistani 0.57

Indian 0.72

Black African 0.51

Black Caribbean 0.75

Chinese 0.41

Source: ONS

War and peace

How do Russian and Ukrainian military forces measure up?


Active personnel 850,000

Reserves 250,000

Aircraft 4,173

Fighters 772

Tanks 12,420

Armoured vehicles 30,122

Rocket projectors 3,391

Overall global rank 2nd


Active personnel 200,000

Reserves 250,000

Aircraft 318

Fighters 69

Tanks 2,596

Armoured vehicles 12,303

Rocket projectors 490

Overall global rank 22nd


Ticket inspection

London Transport fares are to rise by 10 per cent. Which are the most expensive cities in the world to travel by bus, train and tram?

Average cost of a monthly ticket (in USD)

London $179.40

Dublin $128.10

Auckland $125.10

Tokyo $123.10

New York $121.00

Sydney $120.60

Wellington $113.10

Toronto $105.50

Source: Deutsche Bank