Ukraine: What’s Happening, What Might Be Next

 

This post is intended to be descriptive, rather than prescriptive, as for instance BDB’s poll on support for weapons/troops for Ukraine.

What’s Happened

The MSM has been saturated with news of a hurricane that might be blamed on Republicans somehow, and a pipeline explosion that might be blamed on anyone, or sheer incompetence, depending on your favorite theory. So the operational details of what’s been happening in Ukraine after the big breakthrough East of Kharkiv may have disappeared unless you’ve been specifically tracking them (I have). So, a quick recap of the last couple of weeks:

Ukraine went into a short operational pause in the Kharkiv / north Luhansk area, presumably to resupply and reorganize.

Russia kept banging away on the Donetsk front, making little progress and continuing to lose troops and equipment.

Ukraine kept banging away in the Kherson area west of Dnipro, also making little apparent progress and expending a lot of HIMARS and other ammo blowing up bridges and Russian supply dumps and headquarters.

Things started moving quickly again last week.  In the northeast, the Ukrainians managed to surround the town of Lyman, a rail and road hub. There were between 500 and 5,000 Russians and proxy troops trapped there, depending on who you believe. Some or most of the Russians may have made it out, losing a lot of equipment. The final retreat, mostly by LPR proxy troops, apparently became a slaughter by Ukrainian artillery, mines, and light recon forces. There’s plenty of video evidence of the latter out there, don’t go looking unless you’re ready for it. I’ll drop a link to a text-only report by an American volunteer in one of the recon teams, but you still don’t want to read it near meal or bedtime.

After the Lyman episode, the Russian front north of there is being pushed back daily.  Some of this may be planned/controlled withdrawal, some seems to be a collapse. The Ukrainians now appear to control the important road between the towns of Svatove and Kreminna in Luhansk oblast.

Over the weekend, the Kherson front suddenly erupted. The Ukrainians punched in between several towns in the northeast of the oblast, west of a large reservoir on Dnipro, and have pushed the Russians back some tens of kilometers. The advance appears to be continuing. As of today, the Russians abandoned another portion of that front (Davydiv Brid) to avoid a possible envelopment.  Again, this appears to be some combination of collapse and planned withdrawal.

Both of these fronts are moving daily, best followed in real time. A sampling of reporting sites: Most speculative, kinda conservative, really conservative. These are all more-or-less the Ukrainian view. For Russian side reports, try here.

Some of the ‘mobiks’ from the chaotic Russian mobilization have appeared at the front. Mobik prisoners have been taken, and the dead recovered. There are video reports and call intercepts reporting mobiks being dropped off along the front with little or no supplies or communications.

What Might Happen

A pattern of Ukrainian operations is emerging. They are pushing recon/sabotage teams in between Russian-occupied towns and strongpoints, followed by light mechanized forces heavily armed with anti-armor weapons and backed with artillery and rocket fire. These threaten to envelop a major position, leading the Russians to fall back to protect their flanks, or potentially become surrounded.  For what it looks like from the POV of the scouts, this series of reports from the same volunteer I linked above gives a sample.

The UA is managing this because the Russians can no longer man a continuous line at the front. This implies that the larger numbers of casualty reports for Russia are credible. It’s also visible that some of Russia’s most elite formations have been shredded (‘heavily degraded’ is apparently the term of art) in the process. It also makes some ‘sense’ of the reports of untrained mobiks being dropped off with little support along the front. These poor [CoC] are being used as human trip wires to slow down the penetration by Ukrainian scouts and light forces.

The Russians left the mobilization too late to assemble a credible, trained, and equipped reserve force. They are being used as cannon fodder to delay Ukraine. Local Russian reserves have apparently been committed and defeated in Kharkiv/Luhansk and Kherson.  This suggests Ukraine can continue to advance.

On the other hand, the fall mud season (rasputitsa) is beginning, which will slow everything down. Recent videos have shown muddy but still firm secondary roads in the north (Kharkiv/Luhansk), but there’s been enough rain that it’s likely armor would now bog down off-road. Roads in the south (Kherson) appear to be dry still.

I wouldn’t be surprised to see a Ukrainian attempt to punch much deeper into Luhansk, probably towards the key logistics center of Starobilsk, before the mud really sets in.

There are recurrent rumors of Ukraine preparing a third offensive, this one to punch South towards Melitopol and then Crimea. I haven’t seen any actual evidence of such, including from those who are buying up satellite photos. And it’s just what I’d spread around if I were the Ukrainians, to convince the Russians to keep reserves there while the other fronts collapse. But I could be wrong…

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  1. CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill Coolidge
    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill
    @CarolJoy

    If Ukrainian forces can’t soon manage to stop Russia in total, after all the aid that has been offered them, they never will.

    We have given them over 40 billion American tax payer dollars. Russia’s entire annual  military budget is under 70 billion.

    Of course a lot depends on how much of the 40 billion plus in Ukrainian war monies was kickbacked to various Democrat Party Crime families, like the Bidens and the offspring of John Kerry.

    • #1
  2. Locke On Member
    Locke On
    @LockeOn

    Carol, Russia hasn’t taken any significant Ukrainians territory in months. 

    For a while, the question was whether Ukraine could push Russia back, or whether the front line would stay locked up, WWI style.  That question is now answered.

    Now the question is how far Ukraine can go before 1) the mud season sets in, 2) they run out of supplies as did the Russians, or 3) more effective Russian reserves/mobilization appear.  The first two are inevitable at some point, the last is looking less likely by the day.

    • #2
  3. Locke On Member
    Locke On
    @LockeOn

    Oh, yeah, and most of that umpty billion dollars, which I agree is a significant amount, is not being handed over in cash.  Lots of it is going, in tranches, to US / Western military supplier to move equipment and ammunition to Ukraine. So take it out on the MIC, but $40B cash is not slopping around out there.  Some amount from the US and EU is being used to cover Ukrainian budget shortfalls (running up our deficits to cover theirs), so if you want to look for malfeasance, the Ukraine government is the place to poke.

    • #3
  4. BDB Coolidge
    BDB
    @BDB

    Thank you for the dry but exciting update.  Good stuff!

    • #4
  5. MiMac Thatcher
    MiMac
    @MiMac

    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill (View Comment):

    If Ukrainian forces can’t soon manage to stop Russia in total, after all the aid that has been offered them, they never will.

    We have given them over 40 billion American tax payer dollars. Russia’s entire annual military budget is under 70 billion.

    Of course a lot depends on how much of the 40 billion plus in Ukrainian war monies was kickbacked to various Democrat Party Crime families, like the Bidens and the offspring of John Kerry.

    Ridiculous- much of the aid isn’t in cash, it is in weapons. The net effect  & proof of their use, is thousands of destroyed Russian armored vehicles.

    addendum- care to share any evidence for your claims? Besides RT or Scott Ritter? Or just the usual conspiracy theory mongering?

    • #5
  6. Doctor Robert Member
    Doctor Robert
    @DoctorRobert

    MiMac (View Comment):

    CarolJoy, Not So Easy To Kill (View Comment):

    If Ukrainian forces can’t soon manage to stop Russia in total, after all the aid that has been offered them, they never will.

    We have given them over 40 billion American tax payer dollars. Russia’s entire annual military budget is under 70 billion.

    Of course a lot depends on how much of the 40 billion plus in Ukrainian war monies was kickbacked to various Democrat Party Crime families, like the Bidens and the offspring of John Kerry.

    Ridiculous- much of the aid isn’t in cash, it is in weapons. The net effect & proof of their use, is thousands of destroyed Russian armored vehicles.

    addendum- care to share any evidence for your claims? Besides RT or Scott Ritter? Or just the usual conspiracy theory mongering?

    The best guide to the present is the past.  As much as I support the Ukes, I will bet that the scale of the corruption now under way would make Mrs Clinton blush. 

    • #6
  7. Chatlee Coolidge
    Chatlee
    @Chatlee

    @Lockeon, thanks for the summary, but a couple of questions.  Is there a fall mud season in Ukraine?  In New England there is a spring mud season where the frozen deep ground does not allow the snow melt to drain, but there is not a coresponding fall mud season when the ground is warm until the snow falls.  Also, when the Ukrainians advance what can Putin do but use chemical, biologic or nuclear weapons to remind the west why some settlement is required.  

    • #7
  8. Zafar Member
    Zafar
    @Zafar

    Right now the Ukrainians are doing well in the North and (maybe?) West of the Dnieper. Whatever corruption or political issues they have, one should acknowledge that – it’s reality.  How well they will do next year, or the year after that, or the year after that – I don’t know, but I fear the conflict will continue until both sides come to a compromise and make peace.  I don’t see a maximalist outcome for either.

    It’s worth noting that the Russians have advanced, and retreated, and advanced, and retreated in places like Kharkiv oblast – allegedly to preserve soldiers lives. The Ukrainians haven’t done that – they’ve done everything they can to limit retreats.  I don’t know which tactic will work out to be bettr in the long run.

    • #8
  9. Locke On Member
    Locke On
    @LockeOn

    Chatlee (View Comment):

    @ Lockeon, thanks for the summary, but a couple of questions. Is there a fall mud season in Ukraine? In New England there is a spring mud season where the frozen deep ground does not allow the snow melt to drain, but there is not a coresponding fall mud season when the ground is warm until the snow falls.

    AFAIK, Ukraine has both the spring mud season due to thaw, but also a fall mud season due to it being a rainy season.  Russians are probably praying for rain about now, Ukraine the opposite.

    Also, when the Ukrainians advance what can Putin do but use chemical, biologic or nuclear weapons to remind the west why some settlement is required.

    Taking advantage of battlefield WMD attacks requires that your own troops be able to advance after the attack. The Russian reserves and mobiks appearing on the front appear to be short on even conventional warfare equipment (e.g., using T-62 tanks and equipping infantry with rusty AKs and even ancient Mosin-Nagant rifles), so it’s unlikely they have the necessary extra gear to deal with a gas, germ, or nuclear battlefield. 

    • #9
  10. Postmodern Hoplite Coolidge
    Postmodern Hoplite
    @PostmodernHoplite

    For what it’s worth, I’m paying attention to the Melitopol sector. I think this to be the key objective leading to conditions Ukraine can accept (if a negotiated peace is possible…something I’m pretty skeptical about.) If the UA forces can take Melitopol, and sever the land bridge between the Donbas and Crimea, Russia’s strategic position gets way, WAY more challenging.

    (p.s. Does Russian seriously consider popping a nuke in Novorossiya, “annexed” Ukraine, if it means taking out a big chunk of UA forces?)

    • #10
  11. Zafar Member
    Zafar
    @Zafar

    Postmodern Hoplite (View Comment):
    Does Russian seriously consider popping a nuke in Novorossiya, “annexed” Ukraine, if it means taking out a big chunk of UA forces?

    More likely to bomb Kiev or Lviv, to take out leadership.

    • #11
  12. Hang On Member
    Hang On
    @HangOn

    https://bigserge.substack.com/p/the-war-has-just-begun

    • #12
  13. Locke On Member
    Locke On
    @LockeOn

    Hang On (View Comment):

    https://bigserge.substack.com/p/the-war-has-just-begun

    Pretty much hallucinations. To steal one of another Putnik’s favorite phrases: Wait and see.

    ETA: Here’s a map from a Russian source of Kherson oblast as of now. Compare to “Big Serge’s” statements about that front.

    • #13
  14. BDB Coolidge
    BDB
    @BDB

    Locke On (View Comment):

    Hang On (View Comment):

    https://bigserge.substack.com/p/the-war-has-just-begun

    Pretty much hallucinations. To steal one of another Putnik’s favorite phrases: Wait and see.

    ETA: Here’s a map from a Russian source of Kherson oblast as of now. Compare to “Big Serge’s” statements about that front.

    Shhh.  You’re only allowed to point out propaganda on one side.

    • #14
  15. Postmodern Hoplite Coolidge
    Postmodern Hoplite
    @PostmodernHoplite

    Zafar (View Comment):

    Postmodern Hoplite (View Comment):
    Does Russian seriously consider popping a nuke in Novorossiya, “annexed” Ukraine, if it means taking out a big chunk of UA forces?

    More likely to bomb Kiev or Lviv, to take out leadership.

    I doubt it. I could be wrong, but I don’t think so. Nuking a city full of non-combatants practically demands a retaliatory counter strike. Using a tactical nuke to reduce a brigade or two of mechanized infantry and their supporting logistics support? Practically textbook use of “unconventional munitions,” and if done well, entirely justifiable…

    • #15
  16. Chatlee Coolidge
    Chatlee
    @Chatlee

    @Postmodern Hoplite, I don’t think the west is thinking enough about chemical weapons or an EMT.   IMHO, Ukraine will win the war so long as the west supplies it with weapons.  Putin cannot stay in power if he loses the territories he took in 2014. Putin needs to have the west force Ukraine to settle for less than what Ukraine could achieve on the battlefield by having the west threaten Ukraine with withdrawal of support.  Chemical weapons will blunt Ukrainian advances and allow Putin to argue that he may escalate further (ie Nukes) if the matter is not resolved.

    • #16
  17. Flicker Coolidge
    Flicker
    @Flicker

    Chatlee (View Comment):
    Putin needs to have the west force Ukraine to settle for less than what Ukraine could achieve on the battlefield by having the west threaten Ukraine with withdrawal of support.

    Is this war really between Ukraine and Russia?  I know that Ukrainians are the ones doing the fighting, but they couldn’t do any of it without US intelligence and US weapons.  And possibly US money.

    When we talk about Russia issuing rusty rifles, it doesn’t seem like two countries anymore, but rather like Russia against the West, with the Ukrainians manipulating the weapons.  Almost like disposable proxy fighters.

    • #17
  18. Underground Conservative Coolidge
    Underground Conservative
    @UndergroundConservative

    Locke On (View Comment):

    Hang On (View Comment):

    https://bigserge.substack.com/p/the-war-has-just-begun

    Pretty much hallucinations. To steal one of another Putnik’s favorite phrases: Wait and see.

    ETA: Here’s a map from a Russian source of Kherson oblast as of now. Compare to “Big Serge’s” statements about that front.

    Agreed. I don’t know what this Serge is smoking. His assessment of the current status is woefully wrong. That the war could escalate is true, but Ukraine doesn’t want to settle with Russia and be a slave state. I support that.

    • #18
  19. BDB Coolidge
    BDB
    @BDB

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Chatlee (View Comment):
    Putin needs to have the west force Ukraine to settle for less than what Ukraine could achieve on the battlefield by having the west threaten Ukraine with withdrawal of support.

    Is this war really between Ukraine and Russia? I know that Ukrainians are the ones doing the fighting, but they couldn’t do any of it without US intelligence and US weapons. And possibly US money.

    When we talk about Russia issuing rusty rifles, it doesn’t seem like two countries anymore, but rather like Russia against the West, with the Ukrainians manipulating the weapons. Almost like disposable proxy fighters.

    There are definite aspects of this, but Russia invaded Ukraine, not Boston.

    • #19
  20. Postmodern Hoplite Coolidge
    Postmodern Hoplite
    @PostmodernHoplite

    Chatlee (View Comment):

    @ Postmodern Hoplite, I don’t think the west is thinking enough about chemical weapons or an EMT. IMHO, Ukraine will win the war so long as the west supplies it with weapons. Putin cannot stay in power if he loses the territories he took in 2014. Putin needs to have the west force Ukraine to settle for less than what Ukraine could achieve on the battlefield by having the west threaten Ukraine with withdrawal of support. Chemical weapons will blunt Ukrainian advances and allow Putin to argue that he may escalate further (ie Nukes) if the matter is not resolved.

    Fair points, certainly. Chemical attacks against large concentrations of Ukrainian troops may achieve effects comparable to a nuclear strike. However, chemical weapons are notoriously hard to manage, either offensively or defensively. I think the Russian decision of whether to use nukes or chem, if they want to send a message to the West (“Quit supporting Ukraine, and make them settle, or ELSE…!”) will tend toward the tactical nuke option. Something in the 10kt range, set it for an aerial burst, and they’ll pick a target well away from major cities.

    I could be wrong, and these are just my “best guesses.”

    • #20
  21. Hang On Member
    Hang On
    @HangOn

    https://www.newsweek.com/neocons-woke-left-are-joining-hands-leading-us-woke-war-iii-opinion-1748947

    • #21
  22. WilliamDean Coolidge
    WilliamDean
    @WilliamDean

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Chatlee (View Comment):
    Putin needs to have the west force Ukraine to settle for less than what Ukraine could achieve on the battlefield by having the west threaten Ukraine with withdrawal of support.

    Is this war really between Ukraine and Russia? I know that Ukrainians are the ones doing the fighting, but they couldn’t do any of it without US intelligence and US weapons. And possibly US money.

    When we talk about Russia issuing rusty rifles, it doesn’t seem like two countries anymore, but rather like Russia against the West, with the Ukrainians manipulating the weapons. Almost like disposable proxy fighters.

    Reminds me of Vietnam, but with the U.S. and Soviet/Russia roles reversed.

    Or Afghanistan in the 80s, with the roles not reversed.

    • #22
  23. Hang On Member
    Hang On
    @HangOn

    WilliamDean (View Comment):

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Chatlee (View Comment):
    Putin needs to have the west force Ukraine to settle for less than what Ukraine could achieve on the battlefield by having the west threaten Ukraine with withdrawal of support.

    Is this war really between Ukraine and Russia? I know that Ukrainians are the ones doing the fighting, but they couldn’t do any of it without US intelligence and US weapons. And possibly US money.

    When we talk about Russia issuing rusty rifles, it doesn’t seem like two countries anymore, but rather like Russia against the West, with the Ukrainians manipulating the weapons. Almost like disposable proxy fighters.

    Reminds me of Vietnam, but with the U.S. and Soviet/Russia roles reversed.

    Nope. The US never considered Vietnam existential. Russia has repeatedly stated it considers Ukraine is existential. American policymakers believed the Russians were bluffing. So we get to this point. So American position is regime change, no matter the consequences because they think the Russians are still bluffing. To say the American policymakers are delusionally stupid is an understatement. These same delusional idiots think that if there is regime change, it will bring a liberal, pro-western government in Russia.

    • #23
  24. WilliamDean Coolidge
    WilliamDean
    @WilliamDean

    Hang On (View Comment):

    WilliamDean (View Comment):

    Reminds me of Vietnam, but with the U.S. and Soviet/Russia roles reversed.

    Nope. The US never considered Vietnam existential. Russia has repeatedly stated it considers Ukraine is existential.

    Oh, well I guess that changes everything! It’s not existential for Russia, regardless of whether they say it is or not, regardless whether they truly believe it is or not. No one invaded Russia. No one threatened to invade Russia. No one had troops on the Ukraine-Russian border other than Ukraine. We could have claimed Vietnam existential and the claim would stand up equally to scrutiny.

    Besides, the point is that they resemble one another because one side is fighting with real troops in a foreign land while the other side props up the foreigners. Your point is completely orthogonal to that.

    American policymakers believed the Russians were bluffing. So we get to this point.

    No, Russian leadership believed there would be little to no effective resistance to their incursion, so we get to this point.

    So American position is regime change, no matter the consequences because they think the Russians are still bluffing. To say the American policymakers are delusionally stupid is an understatement. These same delusional idiots think that if there is regime change, it will bring a liberal, pro-western government in Russia.

    The American position has been regime change ever since that damn fool banged his shoe on the table at the UN and announced to the world that he and his would bury us. You might have forgotten that, but nations can’t afford to forget. We spent a lot of blood and treasure containing the Soviet Empire and keeping it from following through on its threats. And now that the communist regime has been put in its own little hole, it should be our ongoing policy to stomp on their fingers every time they try and climb out of that hole and inch closer to its previous status, at the very least until all vestiges of their old empire and power structures have left the face of the earth.

    • #24
  25. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Hang On (View Comment):

    WilliamDean (View Comment):

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Chatlee (View Comment):
    Putin needs to have the west force Ukraine to settle for less than what Ukraine could achieve on the battlefield by having the west threaten Ukraine with withdrawal of support.

    Is this war really between Ukraine and Russia? I know that Ukrainians are the ones doing the fighting, but they couldn’t do any of it without US intelligence and US weapons. And possibly US money.

    When we talk about Russia issuing rusty rifles, it doesn’t seem like two countries anymore, but rather like Russia against the West, with the Ukrainians manipulating the weapons. Almost like disposable proxy fighters.

    Reminds me of Vietnam, but with the U.S. and Soviet/Russia roles reversed.

    Nope. The US never considered Vietnam existential. Russia has repeatedly stated it considers Ukraine is existential. American policymakers believed the Russians were bluffing. So we get to this point. So American position is regime change, no matter the consequences because they think the Russians are still bluffing. To say the American policymakers are delusionally stupid is an understatement. These same delusional idiots think that if there is regime change, it will bring a liberal, pro-western government in Russia.

    Ukrainians consider Ukraine to be existential. 

    • #25
  26. HeavyWater Reagan
    HeavyWater
    @HeavyWater

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Hang On (View Comment):

    WilliamDean (View Comment):

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Chatlee (View Comment):
    Putin needs to have the west force Ukraine to settle for less than what Ukraine could achieve on the battlefield by having the west threaten Ukraine with withdrawal of support.

    Is this war really between Ukraine and Russia? I know that Ukrainians are the ones doing the fighting, but they couldn’t do any of it without US intelligence and US weapons. And possibly US money.

    When we talk about Russia issuing rusty rifles, it doesn’t seem like two countries anymore, but rather like Russia against the West, with the Ukrainians manipulating the weapons. Almost like disposable proxy fighters.

    Reminds me of Vietnam, but with the U.S. and Soviet/Russia roles reversed.

    Nope. The US never considered Vietnam existential. Russia has repeatedly stated it considers Ukraine is existential. American policymakers believed the Russians were bluffing. So we get to this point. So American position is regime change, no matter the consequences because they think the Russians are still bluffing. To say the American policymakers are delusionally stupid is an understatement. These same delusional idiots think that if there is regime change, it will bring a liberal, pro-western government in Russia.

    Ukrainians consider Ukraine to be existential.

    Right.  The Ukrainians, even those that speak Russian, don’t seem to be welcoming the Russian invaders as liberators.  

    • #26
  27. Hang On Member
    Hang On
    @HangOn

    WilliamDean (View Comment):

    Hang On (View Comment):

    WilliamDean (View Comment):

    Reminds me of Vietnam, but with the U.S. and Soviet/Russia roles reversed.

    Nope. The US never considered Vietnam existential. Russia has repeatedly stated it considers Ukraine is existential.

    Oh, well I guess that changes everything! It’s not existential for Russia, regardless of whether they say it is or not, regardless whether they truly believe it is or not. No one invaded Russia. No one threatened to invade Russia. No one had troops on the Ukraine-Russian border other than Ukraine. We could have claimed Vietnam existential and the claim would stand up equally to scrutiny.

    Besides, the point is that they resemble one another because one side is fighting with real troops in a foreign land while the other side props up the foreigners. Your point is completely orthogonal to that.

    American policymakers believed the Russians were bluffing. So we get to this point.

    No, Russian leadership believed there would be little to no effective resistance to their incursion, so we get to this point.

    So American position is regime change, no matter the consequences because they think the Russians are still bluffing. To say the American policymakers are delusionally stupid is an understatement. These same delusional idiots think that if there is regime change, it will bring a liberal, pro-western government in Russia.

    The American position has been regime change ever since that damn fool banged his shoe on the table at the UN and announced to the world that he and his would bury us. You might have forgotten that, but nations can’t afford to forget. We spent a lot of blood and treasure containing the Soviet Empire and keeping it from following through on its threats. And now that the communist regime has been put in its own little hole, it should be our ongoing policy to stomp on their fingers every time they try and climb out of that hole and inch closer to its previous status, at the very least until all vestiges of their old empire and power structures have left the face of the earth.

    The US doesn’t need to invade to totally screw other countries up. So the troops on the border stuff is meaningless. Through constant Nato expansion,  the US made its intentions abundantly clear. With this idiot administration and its neocon Republican friends, we are playing nuclear chicken. 

    • #27
  28. Hang On Member
    Hang On
    @HangOn

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Hang On (View Comment):

    WilliamDean (View Comment):

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Chatlee (View Comment):
    Putin needs to have the west force Ukraine to settle for less than what Ukraine could achieve on the battlefield by having the west threaten Ukraine with withdrawal of support.

    Is this war really between Ukraine and Russia? I know that Ukrainians are the ones doing the fighting, but they couldn’t do any of it without US intelligence and US weapons. And possibly US money.

    When we talk about Russia issuing rusty rifles, it doesn’t seem like two countries anymore, but rather like Russia against the West, with the Ukrainians manipulating the weapons. Almost like disposable proxy fighters.

    Reminds me of Vietnam, but with the U.S. and Soviet/Russia roles reversed.

    Nope. The US never considered Vietnam existential. Russia has repeatedly stated it considers Ukraine is existential. American policymakers believed the Russians were bluffing. So we get to this point. So American position is regime change, no matter the consequences because they think the Russians are still bluffing. To say the American policymakers are delusionally stupid is an understatement. These same delusional idiots think that if there is regime change, it will bring a liberal, pro-western government in Russia.

    Ukrainians consider Ukraine to be existential.

    Who cares what Ukrainians want? I don’t. If they want to commit suicide, let them do it without our help and don’t take us down with them. They have a way to peace but they refuse. F them.

    • #28
  29. HeavyWater Reagan
    HeavyWater
    @HeavyWater

    Hang On (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Hang On (View Comment):

    WilliamDean (View Comment):

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Chatlee (View Comment):
    Putin needs to have the west force Ukraine to settle for less than what Ukraine could achieve on the battlefield by having the west threaten Ukraine with withdrawal of support.

    Is this war really between Ukraine and Russia? I know that Ukrainians are the ones doing the fighting, but they couldn’t do any of it without US intelligence and US weapons. And possibly US money.

    When we talk about Russia issuing rusty rifles, it doesn’t seem like two countries anymore, but rather like Russia against the West, with the Ukrainians manipulating the weapons. Almost like disposable proxy fighters.

    Reminds me of Vietnam, but with the U.S. and Soviet/Russia roles reversed.

    Nope. The US never considered Vietnam existential. Russia has repeatedly stated it considers Ukraine is existential. American policymakers believed the Russians were bluffing. So we get to this point. So American position is regime change, no matter the consequences because they think the Russians are still bluffing. To say the American policymakers are delusionally stupid is an understatement. These same delusional idiots think that if there is regime change, it will bring a liberal, pro-western government in Russia.

    Ukrainians consider Ukraine to be existential.

    Who cares what Ukrainians want? I don’t. If they want to commit suicide, let them do it without our help and don’t take us down with them. They have a way to peace but they refuse. F them.

    It seems you are advocating that the US adopt moral nihilism as the central feature of its foreign policy.  

    • #29
  30. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Hang On (View Comment):

    The Reticulator (View Comment):

    Hang On (View Comment):

    WilliamDean (View Comment):

    Flicker (View Comment):

    Chatlee (View Comment):
    Putin needs to have the west force Ukraine to settle for less than what Ukraine could achieve on the battlefield by having the west threaten Ukraine with withdrawal of support.

    Is this war really between Ukraine and Russia? I know that Ukrainians are the ones doing the fighting, but they couldn’t do any of it without US intelligence and US weapons. And possibly US money.

    When we talk about Russia issuing rusty rifles, it doesn’t seem like two countries anymore, but rather like Russia against the West, with the Ukrainians manipulating the weapons. Almost like disposable proxy fighters.

    Reminds me of Vietnam, but with the U.S. and Soviet/Russia roles reversed.

    Nope. The US never considered Vietnam existential. Russia has repeatedly stated it considers Ukraine is existential. American policymakers believed the Russians were bluffing. So we get to this point. So American position is regime change, no matter the consequences because they think the Russians are still bluffing. To say the American policymakers are delusionally stupid is an understatement. These same delusional idiots think that if there is regime change, it will bring a liberal, pro-western government in Russia.

    Ukrainians consider Ukraine to be existential.

    Who cares what Ukrainians want? I don’t. If they want to commit suicide, let them do it without our help and don’t take us down with them. They have a way to peace but they refuse. F them.

    But you care a lot about what the Russians want. 

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