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The View from the Eastern Front
This essay doesn’t have anything to do with the lofty views of the policy wonks. In my opinion, the Russian war against Ukraine will probably last longer than Putin thought it would. Ukraine may lose the breakaway districts, or parts of them. I do not think Russia will ever control the entirety of Ukraine.
I’m more interested in the grunts on the battlefield. Whether Putin realizes it or not, the NATO countries are getting an education on the Russian military and its tactics.
This is the first time that drones have a big role in the largest land war in Europe since WWII. Drones have been used in the past for targeted individual hits. They are being used by both Ukraine and Russia to stop armored vehicles, hit artillery, supply lines, and troop movements.
.Published in Military
Probably last longer than Putin thought? What an understatement. It already has by a long shot.
More importantly than learning their strategies, the decimation of their armor and ordinance is reducing them to a third rate army. Except for the lives lost, it’s a good thing.
Putin expected three days, seven at the outside. The Russians didn’t bring enough supplies for more than that.
I liked the video by the way. Drones have really revolutionized war fighting.
Here is more info on the UAV:
Interesting that the control unit speaks English:
Seymour Hersh is of the view that the Ukraine has already lost.
Of course, I do not think Hersh is aware of how very badly the US upper crust of Dem-leadership-allied 4 and 5 star generals desire to wage an all out war with Russia.
They desire this war so much that the USA took out Nordstrom II, with the help of Norway.
All this provides further reasons why the Left’s leadership hated Trump so much.
Although the rank and file Left spent 2017 to Jan 2021 making every single war casualty in Syria or Yemen as another reason to despise Trump, in reality Trump gave Russian military in the Middle East enough elbow room to take down ISIS. (Obama tried to have our troops stand down to have that occur, but his general didn’t listen to him.)
Clearly Trump would have taken Putin up on the offer to negotiate terms in early Feb 2022 rather than going full scale invasion over the Donbas region. Trump was well aware that that region had suffered greatly under the NeoNazi brigades that had gone in for years and devastated Russian speaking communities in that area.
Anyway sadly we are in a scenario whereby the next step for our military is for them to decide on a “limited nuke attack” against locations in Russia.
An attack that the US public will without doubt be assured can only be “safe and effective.”
(My spouse had noted starting in 2017, that the high end people in his clientele were building underground homes. Which we both found puzzling and worth thinking about. After all, the very well to do love a good view. Why go underground?)
The story of Russian efforts to take down ISIS is not entirely accurate. Russian forces only engaged ISIS when Russia needed some more space to kill Syrians revolting against Assad.
In fact, Russian mercenaries from the Wagner Group tried to attack a US Special Forces base in Syria. From Task and Purpose.
Click on the link for the full story.
Seymour’s fantasy about redirecting divers 80 kilometers from a naval exercise planned months in advance to plant shaped charge explosives whose “salinity” had to be carefully matched (to what? seawater?) in order to hide them from the Russians is the worst spy fiction I’ve read since the Steele Dossier. In addition, we are supposed to believe that Joe Biden, who advised Barack Obama not to go after Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, suddenly summoned up the intestinal fortitude to commit an act of war on a nuclear power? “C’mon, man,” as a certain nitwit might say.
Hersh’s opinions on military matters are equally irrelevant.
I voted for Trump twice but his greatest weakness is in foreign policy. Suppose they do “negotiate?” Why should Ukraine agree? Will this mark the end of Putin’s territorial demands? What happens if he comes back a few years later demanding more? What guarantees could Trump offer to Zelensky that this would end it? Putin is a thug. His word is worthless.
Even the NATO Secretary General admits the NATO proxy Ukraine has been fighting Russia since 2014. Several EU leaders like Merkel and Hollande have admitted that the Minsk II accords were a sham designed only to buy time to train and arm Ukraine for War. Even more conclusive is that John McCain along with his mini-me Lindsay Graham have been shown on video in Ukraine in 2016 urging Ukraine to attack Russia.
”Our” side has been shelling apartment blocks since 2014 killing over 14,000 people.
Ukraine dramatically increased shelling of the Donbas just prior to the Russian invasion which was a catalyst for Russia invading.
Russia’s primary interest has always been to protect those Ukrainian provinces where their is a strong Ethnic Russian presence like the Donbas and Crimea. There is no evidence that Russia wanted to conquer the whole of Ukraine but that said because America is supplying the Totalitarian Tyrant Zelensky with longer and longer range missiles and allowing him to attack inside Russia itself Russia may forced to gobble up more Ukrainian territory as a buffer zone against further attacks inside Russia.
Because Ukraine is now losing the war badly, is running out military supplies, has lost hundreds of thousands of soldiers and is facing a crushing defeat in the coming Russian offensive , the clown force in the Biden Administration and other NATO Allies are seeking to greatly escalate the level of conflict perhaps even to a nuclear level to prevent a humiliating defeat.
America had no vital strategic interest in the Ukraine and never had and yet the crazies in the Biden Administration , the Bidenista Left and the whack job Neocon RINO faction are pushing us down a path that could easily lead to nuclear war.
Russia sees this war as an existential fight to “get Russia” which it really has been since at least 2014 and are very unlikely to back down.
This war should never have been fought for there was and is no conceivable possible outcome of this war yes “winning” which would serve America interests long term and the consequences of this war in the dismemberment of America’s strategic alliances, the devastating destruction and the incredible cost of the ruinous reworking of the Worldwide Energy supply chain, and the staggering humanitarian costs with possible mass starvation that is already beginning to happen due to the destruction of the worldwide food chain were all clearly foreseeable and should have been avoided at all costs .
Btw, the idea that we should try to overthrow Putin is another utterly moronic idea because international observers believe take would only usher in a much more hardline and threatening government.
Continuing this war is completely idiotic. The only prudent course is to negotiate a peace which yes will likely be a humiliating defeat for the NATO Alliance that gives the Donbas to Russia but that is a much better outcome than destroying the entire frigging world.
Vladimir Rudolfovich Solovyov, is that you?
This is one report in a war with many battles that spanned a decade or so.
BTW, Russia was there at Assad’s invite.
America was there due to our CIA’s consummate demand to de-stabilize that nation.
It was a war about ever increasing groups fighting against other groups. There were men who had initially felt compelled to fight on behalf of Assad, but then became disillusioned over the way the military leaders were organizing the battles. So they joined a different group, but then became disillusioned over time by the internal workings of that group as well.
At least Russia remained on one side of the war.
At one point there were four different factions fighting one another in Syria, and three of those factions were funded by our CIA. (I think there may have been as many as eight separate factions going at each other at different points in the war.) When a nation thousands of miles away from the nation state that is embroiled in a civil war decides to create as much chaos as possible, how is that a moral situation?
I didn’t know who Hersh was, so I looked him up. He’s a journalist, and a kooky one at that. He’s had some wild opinions, writes for The New Yorker and the NY Times. He’s got zero credibility in my book. And I don’t think they’ve lost. Even if they have to ultimately give up the eastern regions, they will be free of Russia and be able to join NATO. Russia has lost what, some 100,000 men, a good deal of their military equipment, and exposed as a paper tiger.
I agree with this part, Doug, at least for the foreseeable future.
I do not believe that Putin sought to control the entirety of Ukraine.
Then why drive on Kyiv? Clearly sought a decapitation strike & to install a puppet regime-Putin learned the old Soviet playbook but hasn’t the tools.
Putin’s invasion of Ukraine does seem like a huge blunder. Putin completely underestimated how unified Europe, the United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea and Australia would be in opposition to the invasion and how capable the Ukrainian military would be.
It’s worse than that. Putin is the cause of the unification.
This is worth a listen/watch for those interested in the strategic landscape from a non-US perspective:
One thing you left out was how 225,000 individuals, almost all of them from Eastern Ukraine, were so terrorized by the fighting that went on from 2014 to 2016 that they fled the country. (Usually leaving their homeland for Russia.)
In 2014, the BBC actually told tales of how atrociously inhumane Azov-Nazi end of the Ukraine military happened to be. For some reason — maybe due to the WEF? — now all Western society voices in the media are silent about the Azov-Nazi problem.
I quite agree w/ your mention of how this could easily escalate into a nuclear war. (The type of war which many 3 and 4 star generals all proclaim would be “limited nukes” but once nuke war starts, how would it end?)
Maybe. Whoever replaces Putin when he leaves – via the window or staircase, or just expires in bed in the expelled remnants of his last meal of veal and caviar – will be drawn from the same stratum, and his primary objective will be assuring his allies in the stratum that the system will continue to deliver the money, on schedule, in the accustomed amounts. The necessary people will be necessarily killed, and then the system will continue.
Hardline rhetoric will be dialed up or down as needed. The TV pundits will sing sweet or bluster as the situation requires. National fantasies about imposing Russian power and civilization on its rightful possessions might flower, but as the siloviki know, there’s more money to be made equipping a paper army than using it to fight a war. When you’re buying for the warehouse, you can inflate the cost, take your skim, let others sell it off. The problems start when people need things that are supposed to be in the warehouse.
This assumes that Putin, or a successor, would totally abide by any negotiated peace, and wouldn’t continue the war to bring the Younger Brothers back into the fold, while trumpeting the NATO defeat as the sign of the West’s decline. Even if the post-Putin leader doesn’t particularly care one way or the other whether Russia completely absorbs Ukraine, it’s a good way to whip up BS about Nazis and NATO threats, keep the Wagner group busy and manage their influence, present a Strong Face to the home front, empty the jails of the useless eaters, and direct some rubles to friends.
Then there’s the ah-hah moment in Beijing, when Xi smiles: of course, they always concede, because in the end, they are afraid. They just want their Netflix and TikTok.
The Baltic states know Russia very well:
As amply demonstrated (and recently confirmed by Merkel et al. in regards to Minsk II), our side of the negotiating table cannot be trusted to totally abide by any negotiated peace, either.
Nothing new about that, of course. Most (almost all?) treaties in the history of human conflict, from village-level all the way up to geo-level, turn out to have an expiration date, which is the day when one of the parties decides that circumstances have changed in ways that make continuing to abide by their terms less helpful to its interests than violating them.
So, it’s just human nature that made the Russians invade a neighbor?
That’ll go well for them at the war crimes trial.