Is Ukraine Losing? By Walrus.

According to media reports, Washington is alleging that Zelensky has been less than frank regarding his intentions prior to the Russian invasion. The NYT and AP have published such information so it must be true. In my opinion, Washington is about to discard Zelensky and Ukraine as a bunch of losers.

The fantasy that somehow “plucky little Ukraine” was going to defeat Russia is gone. Despite media hype, Russia has been very careful to perform what one could perhaps term a “surgical” military operation and has never employed more than a fraction of its combat power. I come to this conclusion from observing that, if Russia had exerted itself, not one brick would be standing on top of another in Kiev or Lviv. Why, Zelensky still has his parliament building! Close attention to media images, for example, will reveal that for every apartment building in rubble, there are many in the background that aren’t. Russia has not been waging total war.

Ukraine, as many skeptics including myself, warned is just a proxy vehicle to attack Russia. It has served its purpose. The Europeans have committed economic suicide by refusing Russian oil and gas. They are now totally dependent on America for energy. NATO has been invigorated and American dominance over European foreign policy must now be approaching 1950/marshall plan levels. Sanctions are supposed to weaken Russia although the collateral damage to the world economy continues to increase. American arms manufacturers are rubbing their hands over the forthcoming European orders and American oil producers are doing likewise. So what’s not to like?

Ukraine is about to be dismembered. Russia has turned its back on the West for at least as long as America forbids its European clients from negotiating. NATO is invigorated with new, scared, members. All in all a satisfying outcome so far……

Of course I may be just a “useless idiot”, completely duped by perfidious Russia and the evil Putin. It may be that Putin is the devil incarnate intent on more lebensraum. The Russian Army may indeed be made up of orcs who have to be whipped into attacking and then get to satisfy their perverted lusts on the flower of Ukrainian youth. The Russians may be carrying out scorched earth warfare and the Ukrainians are deftly parrying their blows with the skill of a matador. Thats what most people believe.

However I don’t have a dog in this fight and I was brought up, trained and educated, to value facts and hard evidence. That has cost me plenty over my career because I have never played along to get along. I fail to see why the media, who we have fairly excoriated over Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Russiagate and many other information operations should now be believed when it comes to Ukraine. Nor do I think Russia has been lying about its basic intent or motivation any more than any other country. If thats an unpopular conclusion, well, so be it.

It looks to me that the entire Ukraine episode from at least as early as 2014 has been carefully orchestrated. However I think the plotters have been too clever and the Russians, who didnt start this soap opera, are going to finish it.

I’ll leave it there for the Committee to perhaps think about.

https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/biden-throws-zelensky-under-bus-ukraine-leader-brushed-invasion-warnings

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82 Responses to Is Ukraine Losing? By Walrus.

  1. Babeltuap says:

    Julius Caesar was 100% correct: People willingly believe only what they wish to believe.

    After showing intelligent people over a dozen scientific studies spanning over a decade on the ineffectiveness of masks they refute all the studies. Ask them why the CDC never recommended masks during the height of flu season and they have no answer. Ask them why are people and businesses locked down while 100’s of thousands pour through the southern border unchecked and they walk away.

    This war however is different. There is not refuting over 6M refugees and climbing, cites and towns being leveled only in Ukraine, global food shortages, high fuel costs, inflation with no end in sight and 401K’s getting gutted. Not only is Ukraine losing -We are all losing.

    • IainW says:

      Tough…the Russians spent eight years trying to negotiate a political settlement inside Ukraine that would have maintained integrity of the Ukrainian state. The perfidious US and euro muppets prevented this and ignored the slaughter of ethnic Russian in the East of Ukraine. You reap what you sow and if Western Europe suffers blackouts it is their own doing as are putting up with millions ungrateful and entitled Ukrainian refugees.

    • Ben Zanotto says:

      ” global food shortages, high fuel costs, inflation with no end in sight and 401K’s getting gutted.”

      These have nothing to do with Russia as the financialization of western economies, the non-stop printing of money, and the intentional goal of decoupling supply chains & energy sources have been happening for a long time. We can thank our own politicians and policy-makers. Putin is a nice scapegoat for the west’s self-inflicted wounds.

  2. JK/AR says:

    I, personally, have never known what to believe far as this Ukraine stuff’s been. However I do trust Colonel Lang.

    I do not however, since, for quite awhile – tho TTG & Me’s [&Leith] become ‘something’ of a friendship – accepted just because they said so ISW then again that’s maybe just me.

    And I do – hell the tales he’s telled – TTG is My Friend. TTG’n me I reckon can agreeably disagree where ISW’s in-the-mix. Heck TTG & Colonel Lang neither a one of them ever, as I noticed, erased the fact of ISW Syria Expert Elizabeth O’Bagy [double-wise kin to both Kagen’s & Nulands – & when fired ending “cushiony” on heh heh heh “maverick senator john mccain’s local arizona office.

    I expect Lawfare Al to “stomp” me & us’ required.

    I have a friend over in Korea’s Cousin who used to have a plain ol’ job being a … starred * Something-Or-Other * who – acknowledgeably a expert

    “14 days more at the most!”

    https://www.cbsnews.com/news/ben-hodges-transcript-face-the-nation-04-17-2022/

    I thought then, “Well at least this guy I can trust knows what he’s talking about!”

    https://gypsyscholarship.blogspot.com/2013/07/uncle-crans-family-outdoes-mine-again.html

    But anyway the be’s all that is all is this, The Colonel’s site.

  3. JK/AR says:

    Yeah I know by my first comment I may’ve lent some I’m not of the opinion all’s gonna work out as Washington DC – & Cnn & MSNBC & The New York Times & the Washington Post promises we is

    So : Some Inspirational Soundtrack

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NwqPBlSxb-0

    For’n where we is headed.

    It’ll be fine.

    I promise.

  4. John Anderson says:

    Good. I had hoped you would spare thoughts (a) for the 2014 coup; (b) the thousands of civilian Donbas victims over the period since the coup and (c) for the Minsk Agreements which were to have accommodated the political needs of Donbas in a still-united Ukraine, sort of like Quebec in Canada.

    • Mal says:

      We fix em uppity Kbeckers, but all English speaking Canada’s artillery is being blowed up by then damn Rooskies in the Donbass Republics.

      Cheers M

    • John Credulous says:

      Greetings,

      What did Putin say in his speeches:

      Believes in “healthy competition” – meaning he does not want Russia to be an autarky – he wants Russian manufacturers to compete against global brands – Siemens, Rolls Royce ( engines ) etc. He does not want a closed system that encourages State Owned Enterprises – a lack of competition and corruption – i.e. the Soviet economy.

      “The longer Ukraine fights, the less there will be” – self-explanatory

      “Demilitarization and denazification” – Russia will win a political victory.

      “Ukrainians will decide their political future”

      “The west uses countries as laboratory rats” – said in reference to Libya. Wut ?? Libya ?? Ancient history.

      “Weapons must not be fully automated – there must be human “intervention”

      “Ukrainian forces are integrated into Nato at the company level” – Ukraine was a de-facto member.

      What happened – Russia fought light because it had to and wanted to. In late January and February top Ukrainian officials were telling the US and Nato to stop all of their talk of war – Ukraine economy was being hammered, e.g. could not get insurance coverage.
      Why, because according to standard doctrine, Russia had not built up sufficient forces – the Ukrainians said this.
      Russia went in light, successfully confused Ukraine, and … when the smoke cleared had air dominance which has has only increased and they had a land corridor to Crimea. Ukraine “defended everything and thus defended nothing” – Alex Mercouris

      The economy – Russia has food, electricity and gas for internal consumption. What does Russia need ? Gucci sandals ? There are disruptions – for example in auto parts – this will stimulate internal industry. Hint 2014 sanctions were a salutatory slap to complacent Russia . Russia needs nothing from the West. Russia has everything the West wants, especially energy. If sanctions were supposed to psychologically crush Russians – “we reject you” – OK – banning Russian artists, CATS !!! and athletes from competitions let Russians know the Europeans hate them as a people. And why wouldn’t it be like this when Russia “bans” the promotion of homosexuality and Europe has Monkey-Pox.

      Current trends – surplus stocks of old Soviet weapons are being depleted. Replacement weapons that Ukrainians are not trained on are not effective – unless western “trainers” are used on the battlefield – sure recipe for disaster.
      Ukraine is on their fifth mobilization, their elite and experience soldiers are being attrited.
      Kissinger has given Russia until August to finish up.
      Europe will be replenished with newer weapons while Russia uses tried and true models – e.g. the A10 was to be replaced with the F35 – while ancient Soviet weapons still are effective. Two points – (1) “don’t train your enemy” – i.e. Russia is not using their best by choice, and Nato, dare not use their best – they would not dare “activate” Patriots. Remember the Ukrainian Soviet era jet drone that flew across central Europe undetected until it crashed ??? (2) In Soviet times the production cost of their weapons was a secret – why ? They were inexpensive and the Communists wanted to make good profit on their sale.

      As always, Russia will win when it has won politically. Globally, and in Russia, the resentment of the West is volcanic. And as they say, people back the strong horse.
      America will feast on Europe and Japan, Africa and South America are up for grabs – Mali just kicked out France – in favor of …. … Wagner PMC !

      The West is down and the ROW are eager to put the boot in. Think Turkey, Qatar, India, Indonesia

      Turkey – has more S400’s on order

      Kazakhstan – January 2022 ? What happened ??? Radio silence – oh ? The Eurasian economic, political, military and security integration continues – back the strong horse.

      • Peter Williams says:

        There are disruptions – for example in auto parts – this will stimulate internal industry.

        They all ready make service parts for popular European and Japanese models. My eldest daughter has a Renault Logan (Romanian Dacia). She had it serviced when changing from winter tyres and oil to summer items. Oil filter and oil – Russian, new belts – Russian, tyres – Russian. If she ever needs pistons and rings – ООО ПОРШЕНЬ. Wildberries, a major online Russian marketplace has already added automotive spare parts to its catalogue. And they usually have delivery points in any town of over 15,000.

  5. Cerena says:

    By the way, A Forgotten Anniversary: “on Jun 8, 1967, the Israelis attacked by air, and torpedoed by sea, an unarmed US intelligence ship, killing 34 sailors and wounding 171 others. 2022 marks the 55th anniversary of that attack.” https://thesaker.is/a-forgotten-anniversary/

    • Joe B says:

      Cerena,
      There were 2 people who knew more about the abominable attack on the USS Liberty than any other people in the world … Admiral Kidd and Captain Ward Boston.
      These 2 officers were immediately dispatched to the Liberty and conducted an thorough inquiry involving all the remaining survivors just days after the assault.
      In 2004, an elderly Captain Boston made an affidavit (online, 5 minute read) describing the enraging falsification of the “official” report that was issued under his and Admiral Kidd’s names.
      Any decent human can not remain aloof when reading of the purposeful, deliberate attack that day which included napalming the US sailors, rocketing and torpedoing the ship, and machine gunning the 3 life rafts which were thrown into the water.

  6. Pablo Sanchez says:

    Most realistic assessment of the Ukrainian situation (In my opinion) that has been posted on this website in the past 3 months. Time will bare out the facts…
    Good to see Pat letting other opinions than the MSM (some might consider propaganda) narrative put out for folks to consider when trying to gain a fact based understanding of what is actually happening there.
    After Russia completes the takeover of the two Donbas regions and finishes what they are calling “phase two”, it will be interesting to see what phase 3 entails. My guess is if Zelensky still refuses to negotiate, Russia is likely to start clearing to the Dnieper River and west to take Odessa.
    For phase 4, I think it not unlikely the missile launch sites in Poland and Romania will be removed either voluntarily (unlikely) or by a visit from Kalibr missiles.
    Interesting times…. Lets hope cooler heads prevail.

  7. Pat Lang says:

    All

    It is an interesting phenomenon that since I have been covering the Russia-Ukraine War I am under continuous and daily attack from sites in Russia doing various kinds of cipher attacks on the blog. The most common are “brute force attacks.” I am daily receiving over 1500 such attacks from Russian sites and obvious VPN masked attacks in what Trump called (accurately) s–t h–e countries. What are they afraid of if they are winning so handily?

    Press reports are written by people who actually know little or nothing and who are actually just trying to stay up with the herd.

    Nevertheless, if I missed this one as badly as Walrus thinks I will have to consider my options.

    • Steve says:

      Pat,

      There are some non-mainstream western analysts – those who have opposed the accepted narrative of the war – that have had their sources of income cut off by US corporate entities in order to restrict the flow of information coming out of Ukraine. There have been accounts closed on social media (it’s called “de-platforming” in this dangerously Orwellian era) while former military and intelligence leaders have appealed to Congress not to restrict the anti-democratic activities of those same organizations on the basis of national security interests. At the same time western access to the some sites that at least attempt to show alternatives to the controlled western narrative, have been severely constrained.

      I’m sorry your own platform has been attacked. For the most part it has been a harbor for civilized debate on a highly contentious issue with strong arguments relayed on both sides. The cyber attacks could quite easily have been from both sides:)

    • Jams O'Donnell says:

      How do you know for sure that they are from Russian Sites? Surely the CIA etc have the wish to shut you up, and the means to do so while making it look as if the attack is coming from spurious ‘Russian sites’.

      • Pat Lang says:

        joD

        The sites are listed by IP in my software.

        • Martin Oline says:

          I do not know very much about internet protocol but I have heard of using VPN in browsers. In fact, my Opera browser offers that in the advanced settings but I have never been so hard up for access or paranoid enough to enable it. If a person uses VPN would their location be reported as the country that they choose? If that is the case it would be hard to tell the country of origin, unless they’re using Cyrillic characters or something. . .

        • TonyL says:

          Colonel,

          “The sites are listed by IP in my software.”

          That does not mean much at all. Those IPs are whatever they want you to see. If I may, I’d say you’d need a better tech advisor about this matter.

          Attribution is the hardest thing to do in cyber security. I could command team of hacked PCs to blast the site all days long and you would see the attack is coming from where I wanted you to see.

          • James says:

            TonyL,

            I write software for a living and have managed IT departments. If the IPs are in Russia then the http requests are coming from Russia. The Colonel’s reasoning is sound.

          • Richard Ong says:

            James, one browser (with VPN capability) that I once used allowed me in that mode to choose what country my activity would be “from.” I thus could surf the web in Texas but it would appear I was in the other country I selected.

            So, an attack in fact coming “from” Country X doesn’t necessarily mean the attacker is there. It just means the Texas activity and the intervening steps from Texas to Country X are hidden.

            What am I missing.

        • jld says:

          @James
          ” If the IPs are in Russia then the http requests are coming from Russia. “

          Yes indeed but… who prevents the operator of a botnet (compromised machines) to selectively operate a subset of it from ANY desired location (assuming they do “own” machines within the desired location).
          That does NOT mean that the actual operator is from this location. 🙂
          (retired software engineer)

          • Pacifica Advocate says:

            The botnets don’t even need to originate from a stste-associated operator. Any computer-capable teenager can run a botnet, these days, and from anywhere: India, the UK, Mexico, Canada, Texas.

            The fact that there has been any debate at all, here, would be enough for a Ukrainian teenager–or a #Woke Twitterhead, or a right-wing Freeper–to want to see it silenced.

            There’s literally no way to know where the attacks are originating without hacking the botnet and tracing the IP address of the operator–but that, too, may only be one step in a long series of compromised systems, such of which will need to be cracked at every step.

            Without NSA-level equipment, if the operator is using even only street-level OpSec, it easily could be well-nigh impossible to discover the operator’s true IP.

            There’s good reason why the FBI has a cybersecurity/cybercrimes task force.

    • dazedandconfused says:

      I would embellish that for Walrus but mentioning that the general feeling in the US public is strongly pro-Ukraine and the press cheer-leads in response. It’s a feed-back loop. There is no “Washington” plotting to do anything aside from getting themselves re-elected. The notion that “plucky little Ukraine” can win everything back is, for the moment, very much alive.

    • Euc says:

      With a VPN or other methods you may pretend to originate from everywhere in the world. If you are an agent in an agency you of course hide your IP. It’s the first thing you learn.
      Nice piece anyway

      • James says:

        Euc,

        Its possible to tunnel HTTP requests through Russian addresses but to do it at the scale that the Colonel is seeing would mean that someone very professional is doing it. Considering how much experience the Colonel and his friends have with IO I think that it would be difficult to fool them. It seems much more likely to me that the Russians are actually behind what the Colonel is seeing.

        • jld says:

          @James
          “would mean that someone very professional is doing it”

          Why not?
          See my previous response.

  8. Fourth and Long says:

    Walrus,

    Your post is OK to rather good as far as it goes but is in my opinion insufficient. Because it overlooks, or at least doesn’t mention, the effect on Russia of the sanctions. Their effects, which will be felt increasingly in the not distant future, comprise the essential brutal goal of the entire operation. To cause the huge country to implode or at minimum feel such strain internally that the regime is changed. The speaker of the Russian Duma has said in the past that without Putin there is no Russia. With Russia falling apart and unable to work it’s defense industry with hitech foreign components it goes by the wayside in Washington’s future plans to cut China down to size. The sound and fury of the tanks and artillery, along with the heated information war component tends to remove from sight what is really being waged here, which is economic warfare. You address that in your closing remark about everyone losing. What remains to be assessed is how robustly Russia can cope with what is coming up. To a spoiled “White boy” American like me, it often seems the sanctions present insurmountable odds. But Russia is still mainly a rural country with roots in the peasantry. Most of the citizens really don’t concern themselves with Moscow or St Petersburg. So I think you have it mostly right but only as far as you’ve taken it. There’s lots more down the line and it is a very challenging and daunting outlook to me, who has trouble recalibrating for their unique setting.

    • Fourth and Long says:

      I meant to add that your observations on European forced economic suicide couldn’t be more correct or right on.

    • FHTEX says:

      Sanctions would have bitten had not China and the rest of the world had Russia’s back. But now–sanctions are the best thing that has happened to Russia, whose wealth increased tremendously with the recent dramatic rise of the ruble.

      In reality, there is NOTHING EUROPE OR AMERICA SELLS THAT CAN”T BE BOUGHT SOMEWHERE ELSE. But the precious resources controlled by the Eurasian axis are essential to the survival of the West.

    • cobo says:

      “There’s lots more down the line…” This has been my opinion for some time, so I’ve tried to understand it from that perspective. If the illustrious powers that conceived of this ‘thing’ for Ukraine had no greater intent than to bleed Russia a little and crash the western nations’ economies along the way, then they should have never begun this project. Letting the Russian have its piece of Ukraine and slithering away does in fact sound a lot like the quality of leadership that got us out of Afghanistan. On the other hand, if this is just the opening move in a global strategic war, then so be it. And if it takes this push into global war to destroy a communist, technocratic elite, then so be it.

    • Jams O'Donnell says:

      But Russia is not ‘falling apart’. The rouble has regained most of it’s previous value, while western sources are now wailing that they underestimated the scope of Russias contribution to the Global economy. Meanwhile, the price of oil and gas has gone trough the roof, giving Russia more income for less output. As for being still ‘a rural country’, Russia supplies the US with rocket motors for space flight, produces planes and warships which are far superior to US designs (see Su-57 v. F-35 or F-22, and ‘Gorshkov’ class frigates v. ‘Littoral Combat’ vessels. Russia is building motorways and rail connectivity in an ongoing comprehensive plan (see Kerch Strait Bridge etc.) while US infrastructure is failing everywhere – google ‘number of US bridges needing repair’ – then try roads, sewage systems, water purification etc. etc.

    • Peter Williams says:

      But Russia is still mainly a rural country with roots in the peasantry.

      A country with a 75% urbanisation rate is hardly a mainly rural country. A large percentage may have a дача, огород or some land in a сад, but that does not make them rural dwellers.

      • Fourth and Long says:

        My point was not to dispute the facts you cite but to theorize that they might adjust better to a no frills existence than would the preponderance of Americans, Canadians, UK etc. I appreciate that they are not backward or untalented, but the loss of hitech components may put a serious crimp in their ability to accomplish a wide variety of important tasks.

        • Peter Williams says:

          Perhaps you are right about the preponderance of Americans, Canadians, UK etc. It depends, I lived through the early 1990s “Recession we had to have” in Australia. My interest rates on a commercial property hit 27%!!! I survived just like my Great Depression Era parents by making do.

          I rabbitted in the nearby cemetery, the largest Necropolis in the Southern Hemisphere. I caught yabbies in its western swamps. I picked stinging nettle and dock. I made flour from acorns and both cultivated and wild amaranth. There are many weeds in Australia that arrived from Europe and North America that have herbal and food source relatives.

          People make do!

          My eldest daughter (Russian, in Russia) complained about stinging nettle, and I told her it makes a great soup. Her maternal grandmother agreed, and we made stinging nettle soup. Now she goes to the village where Baba lives and makes stinging nettle soup for my granddaughters.

          People almost anywhere can survive with a little bit of knowledge.

    • IainW says:

      My, to ‘cut China down to size’ is such an arrogant comment. The US does not practise diplomacy but a form of crude thuggery. Russia’s economy is in fair shape and it is evident that the West is economically illiterate as sanctioning a nation that is energy, mineral and food self sufficient acts as if that nation (Russia) had erected a tariff wall.

      • Fourth and Long says:

        You’re right. It was an awful comment and not one I personally endorse. I was arguing within the umbrella assumption that (qua Kissinger and others who advise that strategically it’s crazy for the US to further bond Russia to China) based on everything coming out of recent US administrations (from at minimum Obama onwards) that China is their next target. I personally think they are idiotic madmen. What I was trying to get across was that in their eternal planning for hegemony, this present excuse for severely sanctioning Russia was a primary goal, more primary than any combat in Ukraine. They were ecstatic, in my opinion, that Putin invaded. I don’t personally agree with anything they do or scheme toward. No more than I root for parasites and vultures.

  9. Deap says:

    Photos from the Kyiv war front on a sunny Saturday. Or are these photoshops from the alleged war-torn ravaged capitol? Hard to know these days.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-10908575/Ukrainians-flock-beaches-Kyiv-defiance-against-Russian-invasion.html

    Or are these photos of those who just happily got their fair share from our $42 billion dollars sent support the Ukraine war effort.

  10. Bob Denard says:

    Butbutbut…

    – Putin’s eroding support and mental unbalance;
    – The russian / chechen defeat
    – The ambush of the russian military convoy
    – The ineffective russian air force and the pleas of their captured pilots
    – The victories of the ukrainian army
    – The stuck russian tanks as examples of poor planning and execution
    – The nimble Punisher drone
    – The myriad dead russian generals
    – The stretched and exhausted russian army
    – The 14 last days of the russian army
    – The culminating point !!!
    – 75% of russian forces committed to the Ukraine
    – Russians soldiers shooting themselves in the leg
    – Putin turning on its own
    – Thousands of dead russian troops
    – The russian tech brain drain
    – The switchblades
    – Igor Strelkov
    – The sunk russian ships
    – The Ukraine’s secret weapons : its trains
    – The many dead Wagners at Popasna
    – The poor Vlad for whom nothing works
    – The secret dump of thousands of dead russian soldiers
    – The loss of one third of Russia’s combat forces
    – Russia’s catastrophic defeat at the Severskyi Donets River
    – Russian commanders shooting their wounded
    – King ukrainian artillery
    – The low combat value of Russia’s reserves
    – The eradicated soggy toilet paper’s russian brigades

    Surely, the Ukraine cannot be losing…
    Seems unlikely to me

  11. walrus says:

    I am relieved to note that, with a few unpublished exceptions, our commenters have focussed on events and not engaged in personal criticism which is both unnecessary, uncivilised and adds nothing to the debate. We are all in debt to Col. Lang for publishing this website and allowing us to post here.

    • AngusinCanada says:

      I applaud your comment Walrus, and I will say, Colonel, kudos to you, it is not easy to admit one is wrong, and even harder to admit one has been fooled.
      I do not necessarily agree that NATO is/will be reinvigorated here. From what I see, this has shown the contradictions within NATO, and I believe we’re watching just another facet of the (not so slow) collapse of the US empire. I fear for the future of the West. a total surveillance police state where all info is tightly controlled. Ugh.

      • Deap says:

        US was never an empire, just the last good cause left standing in a broken world mid-last century. US emerged into a global vacuum. Who shall ever take that unique and relatively benign place in the flow our world history?

        Don’t be so sure anyone really wants China to take the US’s place as “global policeman”. I have also learned over the past decades, leadership often emerges by default – no one else want’s the role and hesitates to ever step up, let alone speak up.

        US global leadership never came from unbridled megalomania. However, it for better or worse did become th dominant culture.

        • IainW says:

          Of course the US is an empire. The next in line following the British Empire. Representative of a different time and different technologies.

        • AngusinCanada says:

          “The US was never an empire”.
          Welp, okay then.

  12. I do recall the term, “blowback” was coined to describe the effects of various of our other misadventures and that is what will be most consequential. Not only for the Europeans, but the US as well.
    Zerohedge, among others, is pointing out Biden specifically and the US implicitly, is starting to throw Zelensky under the bus. Given the hysteria of the last couple months, my sense is of a stock that has rocketed to the moon, with little hedging to cover the leverage, so when it pops, there isn’t much to break the fall.
    For one thing, it’s not like trust in our media amounts to much and whatever is left will evaporate, while our political class is not so much the sociopathic megalomaniacs they seem to be, so much as a bunch of rats, very skilled at playing office politics, with no regard for the consequences. Consequently, when the ship starts to sink, they will be racing to get off it, not threatening to nuke the world.
    Given the mid term elections are going to be taking up a lot of the attention of this political class, Ukraine is just going to be a hot potato and used to throw more mud at the administration. “Who lost Ukraine?”
    At which point the actual Ukrainians are going to have to accept how much they were just a playtoy, while the Europeans start to realize that Nato has turned out to be a paper tiger, as the various parts pull in different directions.
    By this time next year, it’s going to be a different world.
    The future is a continuation of the past, until it becomes a reaction to it.

  13. Polish Janitor says:

    I have been following the Ukraine conflict closely and I beg to differ. The way I read I appreciate your frankness , but your analysis is basically this (correct me if I’m wrong): Russia knows what it is doing. It has not fully committed to the war, despite being demolished on every front: economically: isolated, cut-off and assets frozen (the most sanctioned country surpassing Iran and N.Korea. This is a great feat, really I mean it!); socially: being gradually weakened from within (street protests, growing opposition movements, inter-elite rivalries, prominent defections), militarily (Not needed as the evidence and the jury has been already out!); diplomatically only a bunch of 3rd worlders, e.g. Eritrea, Syria, Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, N.Korea have remained loyal to dear leader Putin, plus many UN anti-Russian resolutions already passed; int’t reputation (isolated and condemned). In terms of tech and innovation: rapid spiral of brain-drain. Feel free to fill in if I ever missed more…

    European energy needs can be ensured in due time from Iran, Qatar, Israel, Algeria, now KSA and UAE, plus in the meantime due to innovation we will surely see better and cheaper and more sustainable alterative to the Russian oil. BTW, Iran is the best ready-to-go option to neutralzie the present-day energy shock but because the poor Iranians are being taken hostage to Putin and co.’s geopolitical blunder in Ukraine, the big brother is not letting it catch a breath and sell its stuff to the EU/US. Too bad for them I suppose.

    Also based on your argument Russia (who is ‘Trusting the Plan’) has ultimately led to all these things and geopolitical re-alignments that ultimately favor the U.S!

    Let’s be honest here, this was a blunder, a big fat one. Let’s not read it esoterically and instead see it at face value

    • Peter Williams says:

      Polish Janitor, What is in due time? This year, next year or the year after? There are not enough LNG tankers in the world to replace Russian Natural Gas! Poland is already buying Russian Gas at a much higher price from Germany by return flow!

      And Europe is going to replace Ural crude by a mix of crude oils from various places? Do you have any idea how refineries work? They need a certain type of guaranteed oil, not a mishmash of grades. I’m sorry, you need to go back to school!

      • Polish Janitor says:

        Read my comment properly and fully. Before making a full stop on my usage of the words “in due time”, read the rest then comment. The short answer is hell yeah! we will manage, it is surely for the ultimate good. No doubt about it.

        I think the following links are sufficient in clearing your doubts:

        1)https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/cache/infographs/energy/bloc-2c.html

        2) https://www.bruegel.org/2022/03/can-europe-manage-if-russian-oil-and-coal-are-cut-off/

        P.S.: Which school should I go back to? The Putin school of corruption and paranoia that teaches you to sell blockaded and stolen Ukrainian grains to make a few Rubles? Or the one that teaches courses like ‘how to become a pariah state and drag 100+ million with you in less than 100 days?’

    • daniel_s says:

      Polish Janitor, I wonder where you get your info from.-
      You count on innovation that will lead to better and cheaper and more sustainable alternative to Russian oil (sic). Will probably not keep you warm next winter…
      And then you blame the situation of Iran on Putin- have you been sleeping for the last 40+ years since Khomeiny took power??

  14. KMD says:

    “If the New York Times and AP published it it must be true”
    Nope. The narrative needs to be managed to accommodate reality that cannot be hidden anymore. Scapegoats are needed. WaPo, CNN, and the rest of the MSM who are breathlessly broadcasting the Jan.6 hearings as another distraction from leadership failures will be on board soon.
    Gotta support the “Current Thing!”

  15. Deap says:

    We sent Ukraine the $42 billion dollar check, and told them they must to spend it on Democrat-voting US defense industry contracts. This wealth transfer now qualifies as giving at the office. Democrats yet again pay to play with our tax dollars.

  16. mcohen says:

    I remember posting sometime in January that russia is going to attack the Ukraine when weather favours them.Then they did and I remember reading here and there about weather conditions and tanks stuck in the mud.
    What most people forget that this is no vietnam or Afghanistan.This is the country next door.Probably could drive to the battlefront and leave your car parked in Belgorod.Farmers along the russian/ukrainian probably know each other well.and there uncle’s and cousins and so on.
    Rest assured Lindsey graham and John mccain would be viewed with suspicion by both sides

  17. mcohen says:

    Well walrus.That is some yarn.Can only mean one thing.Russia is about to be attacked

  18. VietnamVet says:

    Walrus,

    Last December, the Biden Administration concluded Russia was going to invade Ukraine and started the arms buildup there that increased western military contractors’ profits. This is the culmination of the campaign started in the Obama Administration in 2014 to get Russia bogged down in an unwinnable European war to force a regime change. The chickens have come home to roost. Joe Biden now says that Volodymyr Zelenskyy “didn’t want to hear it”.

    This is now a hot proxy world war. A reality most seem to want to deny. A touch of reality is that time is not on the West’s side. There will be much more destruction unless there is an armistice soon. Russia may be on the brink of initiating Option 3; likely the Odessa Campaign to conquer all of the Black Sea Coast to Moldavia making Ukraine a rump state. There is the risk of escalation to a nuclear war. There are already major blowbacks – inflation and shortages which are blamed on Vladmir Putin rather themselves. The West must push toward some kind of stalemate sooner rather than later. The January 6th hearings highlight the high-level managerial fear that the USA is on the brink of dissolution due to the hatreds aroused by the use of identity politics that purposefully keeps the US government from serving or protecting its people.

    The world is running out of options. Either the hot proxy war goes nuclear or one side or the other tosses out the corrupt incompetent neoliberal oligarchy and goes into a full mobilization and conquers the opposition with WWII levels of destruction and death. Indeed, the only way to avoid the splintering apart of western civilization is a stalemate — an armistice and a DMZ along the East Bank of the Dnieper River and the Line of Contact manned by Eastern Europeans.

    No wonder, Democrats are looking for new leadership during the ongoing primaries for November’s mid-term elections. But none are to be found.

    • cobo says:

      I don’t doubt for a moment that the internal strength of the US can be rallied, just turn off the News, it’s still there. No capitulation. Engage the Russian enclaves of Transnistria, Kaliningrad, South Ossetia, Abkhazia, Nagorno-Karabakh. Engage the Russian fleet, and get ready to stand up to the constant “threat” of nuclear war. Because that is the go-to for the powers that want to drive us into the corner, shivering in fear.

      • Pacifica Advocate says:

        Sorry: that should be 50,000 shells, not 5,000.

      • Richard Ong says:

        Please explain the purpose of the “engage the enclaves” initiative.

      • Peter Williams says:

        Nagorno-Karabakh is an Armenian exclave. Russia tried to get Armenia to negotiate with Azerbaijan, but they refused and paid the price. Transnistria is Russian aligned, but not Russian controlled. Sheriff controls the territory. South Ossetia wishes to unite with North Ossetia into the Republic of Ossetia. Abkhazia just wants to be left alone, but with Russian protection. An attack on Kaliningrad will mean the destruction of the attackers and their cities. If you wish to see destruction on a scale that will make Dresden and Tokyo look like petty incidents, go ahead with your insane plan.

    • Worth Pointing Out says:

      “Last December, the Biden Administration concluded Russia was going to invade Ukraine and started the arms buildup there that increased western military contractors’ profits.”

      In my opinion that statement has reversed the cause-and-effect.

  19. Deap says:

    Biden-Obama ex post facto in 2022 needed to make Russia bad- bad-bad, so they could justify spying on Trump in 2016, on the merest, planted whisper Trump was a Russian agent totally in bed with Putin.

    As the Durham investigation started naming names in 2022 in the 2016 Obama ginned up Russiagate Hoax, Biden-Obama went into action yet again to make Russia global enemy #1.

    That is the way it looks to me.

    • The roots of Russophobia seem to like far deeper than mere ploys of the American political class.
      See, for instance,

      Yes, Putin is evil
      Be judgmental. Say the word. ‘Evil.’

      If the Holocaust was a final exam for humanity in the 20th century,
      then we have failed that exam.
      “Never again” has evolved into “ever again.”

      Putin’s fantasy is not the resurrection of the Soviet state.
      It is older, deeper and darker than that.
      It is the revival of the Czarist empire.

      Is there nothing redemptive in all this?
      Is evil destined to last forever?

      The Czarist empire was “evil”?
      It is remarkable, to me, that even in America in 2012
      some American Jews are reviling Czarist Russia.
      Ever again indeed.

  20. southpoint says:

    It seems like only yesterday that Biden was mangling the Afghan “draw down” and many observant pundits around the world were postulating the breakdown of US superiority which was a given, even despite(or because of) Trump.

    https://www.bbc.com › news › world-asia-58312949
    How Afghanistan rattled Asia and emboldened China – BBC News
    Premier Su Tseng-chang said last week that “foreign forces” who wanted to invade Taiwan were “deluded”, while foreign minister Joseph Wu had this to say: Thanks for upholding the wishes & best…

  21. Deap says:

    WSJ – one more photo worth 1000 words. McDonalds in Moscow reopens with new ownership and new logo, but its workers still look smart and chic: Vkusno & tochka. (Tasty and that’s it). Claims this re-opening brings an air of normalcy to the city.

    I repeat: America never embarked on empire; but American culture somehow found receptive weak spots all around the world. I am sorry for that. My own American life was enriched by contacts with other cultures and other empires, both present or historic. I feel culturally deprived now running into mainly “American culture” norms found around the world.

    Abdication to American Culture says far more about lands willing to be allegedly conquered, than proof of US imperialistic pretensions. America wanted a world at peace after both WWI and WWII. So we could sell you things. And you were more than willing to buy them.

    In this current world of Maya – the Hindu goddess of illusions – I signed up for weekly translations from the ancient Islamic mystic Rumi – to give myself pause and tap into a more universal flow of life; not more cultural fast food no matter what name is used to present a junk food diet.

    Is there still hope for the painfully new cultural diversity in America?

    Ironically proof is found right here in our local MacDonalds whose manager just received the Top 1% Ray Croc award: She spoke no English when arriving from Mexico as a teenager and now she is a team leader for 60 employees serving more than 1000 customers a day. Her advice for other managers: “Just love the people and care about people. Love the job and always bring energy to work.”

    May we continue to both impart and export those American cultural values.

    • Peter Williams says:

      The man who bought out McDonalds, already had 25 Siberian stores in his massive empire. He has stated that he will reopen all 850 stores, and add another 150 in a year or two, and he has the money to do that. Initially, only the names of products have changed, as all of McDonalds previous Russian suppliers, still provision Вкусно и точка. Soon Coca Cola’s syrups will run out and new syrups will have to be found. There is talk that older Soviet drinks may make a reappearance, https://www.rbth.com/russian-kitchen/332436-soviet-soft-drinks along with Квас, and fruit juices and tea. He has also said that the menu will remain the same for a while, but less popular items may be dropped, and Russian alternatives added.

  22. Kim Alphandary says:

    For me. I came to a point where I could no longer handle western media. All the joy to be had by imagining the destruction of Russia. I am not sure why, but, I am not pro-Russia, but, I don’t want to see it dismembered.

    When the USSR fell, most Russians survived by growing potatoes on their balconies, that was not so long ago, in that sense, they are better prepared for hardship.

    WAR, it sounds horrible in Ukraine, stories of men who walked with their families to the border, and then yanked away from their families to be conscripted. WAR makes for ugly stuff.

    Thank you for your website.

    As far as anti-Russian propaganda, with Russia-gate etc. It was clear what the objective was, is. From way back. It was also seen as a way to get the U.S. back to a country where everyone is together again.

    I believe they will not stop their idiocy. That their only option now is to prolong the war forever. “Forever Wars” as they say.

    Not to mention all the rising complications like the: 100 billion euro “Bundeswehr Special Fund”, rearmament of Germany. Not to mention all the other steaming conflicts…

    I hope someone stops all the sanctions! The economic catastrophe in the US is truly frightening!!! Again, much less in the rest of the world.

  23. Pat Lang says:

    Those who think the US was never an imperial state re ignorant of history. They should ask the Filipinos. Cubans, Puerto Ricans, Guamanians about that. How do you think we acquired all those territories? Then talk to the Hawaiians, Samoans, Panamanians. Come to think of it, talk to the Mexicans.

    • Deap says:

      Not to quibble, but most of these small islands were unintended spoils of war with Spain against Mexico and most handed back for their own independence. May I add often to their own regret, when one sees what they did with their “independence”. Wish we could get rid of Puerto Rico – I am on board for that release of one last vestige of “empire”.

      American Samoa seems happy with their current imperial (dependency) status – home of Charlie the Tuna and a US National Park that keeps many from completing their 100% check list of National Parks visited.

      • TTG says:

        Deap,

        It was the Spanish-American War, not the Spanish-Mexican War. Samoa and Hawaii was pure American imperial ambition.

        • Fred says:

          A coaling station at Pago Pago was an important strategic asset! Just like Puerto Rico, which we should probably set free. Maybe we can get them to agree to make AOC their first President?

      • Pat Lang says:

        Deap
        Small islands? The Philippines? My family fought for a lot of years to suppress the Filipino revolt against Spain for their independence. They simply continued against us, and we joined the party. Cuba? We ran then directly for several years and then retained the right to remove their government whenever we pleased until FDR gave it up. Puerto Rico? We still have it. Who needs it? The Virgin Islands. We bought that. Why? Alaska? We bought that also. Why?

      • leith says:

        More Samoans stateside than there are in American Samoa. Maybe four times as many? I served in Nam with several.

  24. KMD says:

    Ukraine is running out of men.
    https://www.theautomaticearth.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/UkrWomenArmy.jpg
    They are going to start drafting women up to age 60.

    • leith says:

      KMD –

      Older than 60, and volunteers all. Those grey she-bears don’t need to be drafted.

  25. Razumov says:

    The western media is clearly rolling out a heavy cope narrative that admits defeat in Ukraine, strangely before any really catastrophic defeats on the ground.

    So the protracted war strategy adopted by Putin, which was met by endless complaints from the pro-Russian peanut gallery and complete derision by western analysts, is now bearing the first fruit of victory: support for Ukraine is collapsing in Washington and NATO.

    Putin correctly understood that the real center of gravity in this war is not in Ukraine but in Brussels. Just as the real center of gravity was not in Syria but the foreign countries fueling the insurgency.

  26. Pat Lang says:

    walrus
    Congrats on the many page visits. Interestingly my software shows me that a lot of them have visited your post thousands of times.

  27. jim ticehurst says:

    With an typical ratio…50 per 4000 ..there should be about 350 comments..?

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