Russia vs. Ukraine: Not quite how it’s been presented
File this away in the “Pooty already won” folder: Notwithstanding Brandon’s rambling speech, a top German business newspaper (Handelsblatt, very credible) claimed that in a confidential discussion with the Europeans, Uncle Sam backed down on his threat to cut Russia off from dollar transactions in the event of a war, as Germany (and other countries) need to pay for Russian gas (and oil, and chemical fertilizer.) Without a means to pay for the Russian stuff, the entire global energy market would blow up completely, also likely tanking our stock market as well as any remaining Democrat hopes of losing under 80 Federal seats in the midterms.
Hence, the “apocalyptic” sanctions promised by Brandon/Kambodia are off the table. Instead, they’re now threatening more “targeted” sanctions against Russian banks, as well as stepped-up export controls that would likely cut Russia off from the app store and so forth. This is a huge retreat, but it should have been predictable. They really can’t do much, economically, to Russia at this time.
What they can do, is continue showering the Ukraine with weapons, and hope it leads to Pooty losing more soldiers than he intended, should he give the order. Most recently, our State Department’s export control arm has given the Baltic countries permission to export various weapons including Stinger low-altitude antiaircraft missiles to the Ukraine.
This is rather comical as it implies the Baltics have more than a “demonstration” quantity of Stingers on hand. Fact is, training needs (shooting live Stingers) for inexperienced Ukrainians would eat up half or more of supply. How many do these little countries have to spare? Probably, as I write this, some U.S. Army warehouse is loading these weapons for shipment to Latvia, etc. Of course, this is a desperation move, as most NATO countries have Stingers, but somehow no one but the “lunatic fringe” on Russia’s borders wants to help deliver them to the Ukraine. Regardless, fielding such weapons takes time and training (both individual and in terms of organizational-tactical development, i.e. determining where and how Russian helicopters would be used, and deploying the missiles accordingly)—and Ukraine now likely has neither.
Keep an eye on this “foreign aid” stuff, as (if the balloon goes up) it’s likely to end up in Russian hands, a la Afghanistan. It would be more “hey where did all our time and money go?”, a mini (or not so mini) Afghanistan—great material for Tucker Carlson. Uncle Sam and our MSM would also likely have to explain away (or suppress or ignore) some uncomfortable footage (It’s staged! Propaganda!) of Russians being greeted as liberators in some areas. In short, Brandon/Kombucha and the entire U.S. foreign policy establishment is grossly misperceiving how a Russia-Ukraine war would turn out. Of course, it’s understood that Ukraine would not do well, but the degree of “not well”, and even more so the domestic and international political consequences, have been underestimated. If war happens, it is likely to be a huge embarrassment (great fodder for Republicans, after the fact) and another nail in the coffin of Uncle Sam’s “unipolar” world.
Indeed, just about all our “experts” now say that while Russia would prevail against Ukraine, it would be a “bloody war of attrition” that would make Pooty wish he’d never given the order. This “war of attrition” line is so common, perhaps it’s in some talking points going around (anyway, you know these people are an echo chamber.)
Of course, “attrition” means a slugfest in which neither side gets the upper hand. But if they admit Russia would win… Well, propaganda doesn’t have to make sense.
Having waged constant (albeit mostly “low-level”) warfare for close to eight years, Ukraine’s army is certainly more “credible” than any European army, with the exception of Britain’s. However, it is a static deployment force with no experience in maneuver warfare, and in fact, no history of successful operations above the level of a reinforced battalion. Dumping U.S. and British arms on the Ukraine, and sending U.S. Army instructors to train individual Ukrainian soldiers how to shoot or whatever, does nothing to help that. (We saw how that worked in Afghanistan.)
Moreover, although there are heroes and true believers in every army, the overall loyalty and motivation of Ukraine’s force is questionable. Ever since the pro-American regime killed the economy by cutting ties with Russia, the army’s $300-$400 monthly salary for an enlisted volunteer has been the best-paying lawful job available for a “non-connected” Ukrainian male without a useful college degree, and undoubtedly, many are in it because there’s nothing else to be had that justifies getting out of bed. This may be good enough for sitting in a trench or loading a cannon against rebels in Donetsk, but how does it work when Death Itself is rumbling down the road towards you? We may find out.
Not to mention, as in France 1940, Ukraine’s political chaos, confusion, and disillusionment may well play out in its military performance. How likely are you not to break and run, when the leaders of the party you may have voted for are facing prosecution? (Nothing like this has been mentioned in our MSM or even in thinktank
publications—it’s taboo talk, you don’t admit and air this stuff out in the open.)
Ukraine’s army is also relatively small. There have been ridiculous figures (500,000 or more trained men) cited as regards Ukraine’s additional mobilization potential, however, it is unclear how many of these inactive reservists are still in the country. (Since the pro-American takeover, millions of mostly young Ukrainians, including many veterans, have left for work in Russia, Poland, Italy, etc.)
It is very telling that, despite the imminent danger of war, Kiev has not broadly called up its general reserve.
Presumably, they know most of those guys wouldn’t show, for one reason or another, motivation being one, absence being another. (Also, it’s my understanding that called-up reservists don’t get paid, or if they do, it’s barely enough for cigarettes.)
Lastly, a note about the “Ukraine may lose, but then they’ll do partisan warfare (i.e. in the trees like Vietnamese)” angle. As far as I can tell, this was brainstormed last month by dilettantes at the Brookings Institution, then made its way to Brandon’s people, who voiced the idea of supporting a future Ukrainian insurgency against Russia, and then the New York Times ran a story about the U.S. potentially setting up bases (in Poland or wherever) for cross-border guerilla activity. Of course, this goes against the insurgency textbook, which holds that guerillas need broad, deep civilian support in their areas of operations, whereas Russia would likely stick primarily to pro-Russian majority regions near its border and on the Black Sea coast, not seeking to permanently occupy anywhere it’s not wanted.
Russia would also likely have genuine support from law enforcement personnel (at least the non-political rank and file) in these areas. Note than in early 2014, when pro-American revolutionaries took power in Kiev, police in southern and eastern Ukraine sat it out and didn’t come over to the new regime, so much so that the regime had to enforce its will and put down pro-Russian protests and activism using soccer gangs, Nazi gangs, and ad-hoc militias (really nasty stuff that our Democracy Crusaders don’t talk about.) In fact, an entire police station in Mariupol, Donetsk province, declared rebellion and was put down by National Guard backed by tanks, with at least ten dead cops. In short, the “partisan” angle is low-IQ and ridiculous.
While Uncle Sam was tied down in bug-hunt misadventures in Iraq and Afghanistan, Russia used its “gas station” proceeds to develop the world’s most experienced ground maneuver or “kinetic operations” army, with a history of success in Chechnya 1999-2001, Georgia 2008, eastern Ukraine 2014-2015, and Syria (including fighting ISIS) since 2015. Russia now has its entire “professional” army (not, for the most part, the conscript units) sitting on Ukraine’s border. The Russian patriotic song that goes, “On the high banks of the Amur stand the watchmen of the Motherland” is no longer relevant, as almost all combat-capable units have been brought from near the Chinese border Ukraine-wards.
Russia also has de facto control or “veto power” over Ukraine’s electric supply coming from Belarus, without which, the lights go off. Yes, they just go off and that’s it. Then, Ukraine can be yabba-dabba like the Flintstones. Furthermore, through hacking, jamming, EMP, and/or physical sabotage or aerial bombing, Russia could probably shut down telecommunications in large parts of Ukraine, for some days at least. (In this context, it’s worth noting that much of Ukraine’s army relies on civilian cellular telephony—not a winning recipe.)
Russia would also likely use its ultra-accurate “Iskander” short-range ballistic missiles to destroy Ukrainian army fuel and supply depots and other facilities, rendering Ukraine’s logistical and command-and-control capabilities degraded or even moot in the first 24-48 hours of a conflict. Long-range air defense sites could also be destroyed. Ukraine’s only “immune” military assets would likely be its defense ministry and other major military headquarters located within cities, as Russia would want to keep civilian casualties low, both for international PR and to minimize indignation among Ukraine’s population.
Additionally, Russia has a very well-trained air force, whereas Ukraine’s exists only on paper. Even if Russia’s combat aircraft are limited to local “ground support” rather than a strategic role, the fact is Ukraine has zero frontline/close-in air defenses, and Ukrainian soldiers simply “didn’t sign up for” this level of extreme danger and asymmetry. Moreover, Ukraine’s army is a genuine/full-on army, not ticks hiding in a haystack a la ISIS or Al Qaeda, and thus, its positions and heavy equipment (especially in front lines facing the Donbass rebels, which have hardly moved for years) are extremely visible and vulnerable to attack by trained air crews, not to mention by MLRS platforms firing thermobaric (napalm type) warheads, of which Russia has plenty.
The real threat to Russia is not in any Ukrainian resistance, but in potentially biting off more than it can chew—for example, more territory than can be supported and improved (Crimea-style) through Russia’s budgetary means. After all, Ukraine is so degraded and impoverished, that to bring any substantial part of it up to Russian standards (thus keeping the population on Russia’s side) would require, in the medium term, tens of billions of dollars (or many trillions of rubles) as well as considerable managerial competence and a great deal of flexible micromanagement, which may not be Russia’s forte given its hyper-centralized administrative structure.
Also, it is unclear whether Russia would fully incorporate these areas, or leave them as some kind of bogus “free state” buffer with the West. Probably the most dangerous thing for Pooty would be to go all the way to Kiev, in which case, he inherits the responsibility to feed not only Ukraine’s largely pro-Russian areas, but also a potentially very hostile (and useless from an economic standpoint) capital-city population, which must be occupied militarily in the most direct way.
Fortunately for Russia, it seems our world is in the early stages of a 1970s-style commodities boom, so any mistakes would (at least for some time) be blunted by giga-dollars flooding into the Motherland for the foreseeable future.
As for other potentially impacted countries in the region, if Ukraine really comes apart, Poland would be the most obvious candidate to exercise a de facto “protective mandate” to feed and stabilize (of course, with American money) the pro-European, western/northern rump remainders of the country. Jack Posobiec, the Twitter personality and humanevents.com pundit (of Polish descent), evidently sees this and has been pitching a Polish eastwards expansion on his Twitter feed, trying to get the thought out there. It’s always nice to see a young guy on social media with more intelligence and foresight than anyone in the U.S. Government.
Again, if Pooty gives the order, it’s likely to turn out very bad for Brandon/Kampuchea as well as General Milli Vanilli and his rainbow clown car posse. Republicans would reap the rewards soon enough, but
it is critical not to rush into the breach while it’s happening, as the Dems would like nothing better than to sweep their Voter Fraud bills (or some parts thereof) into “must pass” emergency sanctions legislation, a war appropriation, or something along those lines.
Please, GOP, don’t catch War Fever, don’t take the bait, don’t give them squat!!! Game this out now, before they put you “on the spot”!!!
Update : January 23, 2022
This will be brief! Anyone interested in a detailed “balance of forces” summary of Ukraine and Russia, please see the “Ukraine” and “Russia” sections in my below prior email, if you haven’t already. (Nothing like this is available to the public anywhere.) As of now, despite Brandon having savaged Trump for losing touch with our allies, the new German chancellor refused to take his call this past week (“too busy”), and in the next day or two, Russia, Germany, France, and the Ukraine will sit down for emergency talks without Uncle Sam. This is simply the last chance. The U.S. and UK are now daily flooding the Ukraine with high-end arms, turning it into another 1980s Afghanistan, and if Russia waits too long, then at some point, the Ukrainians might learn how to use this stuff (or that has to be taken into account, anyway) and then it may be too late for Pooty. In short, the weapons shipments are actually raising the prospect of imminent war. The U.S. and UK have made clear they’re ready to fight to the last mainland European, and thus, Europe has cut them out of any solution. Even if it’s unclear what Europe can guarantee to Russia without U.S. buy-in, the Creepy Whisperer’s embalmers have allowed Russia to break “Western consensus” to the point that Germany, the leading European state, won’t even talk to him. Some foreign policy success, that!