“Putin signs annexation laws as Russia calls U.S. military aid for Ukraine an “immediate threat””

“As Vladimir Putin signed laws Wednesday formally declaring a huge swath of Ukraine part of Russia, his ambassador in Washington called the United States’ plan to provide Ukraine with an additional $625 million in military aid an “immediate threat” to Russia’s strategic interests. The ambassador said the ongoing provision of heavy weapons to Ukraine had cemented “Washington’s status as a participant in the conflict.”

The latest American military aid package for Ukraine, announced Tuesday, includes additional “HIMARS” advanced rocket systems — weapons credited with helping the country gain momentum against Russia’s occupying forces — as well as other artillery systems, ammunition and armored vehicles.

“The supply of military products by the U.S. and its allies not only entails protracted bloodshed and new casualties, but also increases the danger of a direct military clash between Russia and Western countries,” Russian Ambassador Anatoly Antonov said on the Telegram messaging app. “We call on Washington to stop its provocative actions that could lead to the most serious consequences.””

Comment: You pays your money and you takes your chances.

If Putin does not know that a first use of nuclear weapons will probably lead to the destruction of “Holy Russia” then he is a deluded fool. pl

Putin signs annexation laws as Russia calls U.S. military aid for Ukraine an “immediate threat” – CBS News

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73 Responses to “Putin signs annexation laws as Russia calls U.S. military aid for Ukraine an “immediate threat””

  1. Whitewall says:

    It may be getting close to time for V. Putin to have a ‘work place accident’.

    • JamesT says:


      The guy who replaces Putin might be much worse than you expect.

      • Pat Lang says:

        Or he might not be.

      • Whitewall says:

        True. He could be a Duginist with a bad attitude.

        • Barbara Ann says:


          I think it was clear in his September 30 speech that Putin is now at least talking like a Duginist himself. Dugin called it “epoch-making”.


          • Whitewall says:

            Barbara Ann-

            That piece has a chilling tone when read just on its face. Putin is now going to be that new leader in his mind. For an old guard in Russia this would have some appeal, but I think post ‘boomer generation’, the appeal will lose steam. Too much modern conveniences in the hands of average Russians to give up for constant struggle. As thorough as that speech was, I don’t think Putin survives the year.

      • Peter Hug says:

        Look – the Russians will do whatever they do, and if someone knocks off Putin he’ll be replaced by someone who is a result (presumably) of some internal struggle within the Russian power structure. Both the Ukrainians and the rest of the world will then have to work out how to deal with whoever that is. I’m not sure we’ll get much say in how that ends up, though.

  2. Lesly says:

    It’s been nice knowing you all.

  3. Valuenotfound says:

    Isn’t mutually assured destruction a thing anymore? Are we (US & western Europe) all in on this? Would we really end civilization as we know it over Ukraine?

    • Pat Lang says:

      Would you have defied the USSR over W. Germany?

      • Valuenotfound says:

        Col Lang,

        Aren’t we already “defying” Russia by supplying arms and support?

        To answer your question, I would have committed ground forces and all accompanying support to a NATO ally. However, I’m not 100% sure I would have ended the world over West Germany or any other country other than our own. Ukraine is not a NATO ally.

        The fact that we can so cavalierly discuss ending the world is a very bad omen.

        • TTG says:


          Putin is rolling around in the talk of ending the world in a nuclear armageddon like a dog rolling in a rotting carcass. Doesn’t his talk faze you in any way?

        • Pat Lang says:

          Several of you do not seem to understand that for MAD to work it has to be credible. Duh! Or you may just be Russians or symps like TC. Duh!

          • Personanongrata says:

            The doctrine of Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) was developed as a deterrence that guarantees a nuclear first strike would be met by an overwhelming nuclear counterstrike.

            MAD is predicated on the assumption that leaders of nuclear armed belligerent nations would act rationally with the full understanding that the fate of humanity rests upon their decisions.

            The jury is still out on rational/sane leaders.

      • William matthews says:

        Those are very different things.

        • Pat Lang says:

          William Matthews
          How are they different? Germans are worth more than Ukrainians?

          • valuenotfound says:


            The Russian threat of a nuclear strike scares me to death, as it should all of us. It paints a picture of a leader clearly not living in the same reality as the rest of us. If we truly believe that Putin is ready to launch a tactical nuclear strike, where is the call for calmer heads to prevail? Where are the European leaders calling for peace? The ones who will need natural gas this winter? Or will natural gas not matter in a nuclear winter? Do we think it’s a bluff? It would seem so. How else can this be treated so casually?

            Col Lang,

            The threat of mutually assured destruction would hopefully dissuade the use of nuclear weapons even at a tactical level to sane people. At this stage I’m not sure we are dealing with a 100% sane person. We act like there’s nothing else we can do except keep doing what we’re doing. Maybe in addition to weapons, we send a diplomat or two.

            As for the value of lives question, to defend Ukraine, I would sacrifice every Ukrainian life before one American.

          • Pat Lang says:


            You answered my question. You would not have defended the west against Stalin or anyone else.

          • In terms of geopolitical significant to America, absolutely yes.

  4. blue peacock says:

    “If Putin does not know that a first use of nuclear weapons will probably lead to the destruction of “Holy Russia” then he is a deluded fool.”

    Col. Lang,

    Precisely! Haven’t leaders brought the total destruction of everything they claimed they stood for by allowing their ego to dominate their misjudgments?

    Putin misjudged the capability of his military and under-estimated the resolve and capability of the Ukrainian military. He believed his own fantasy that he was presiding over a super-power class military and that he could effect regime change in Kiev with his “special military operation”. The Ukrainians didn’t roll-over and didn’t cry uncle, but have shown the world the reality of Putin’s military capability. Instead of recognizing his error in judgment and cutting his losses like any smart trader does, his ego is causing him to keep doubling down. All he’s left with is making threats.

    Estonia’s prime minister said Tuesday that the West must not give in to Moscow’s nuclear threats or premature peace proposals but stand firmly in support of Ukraine as the invaded country fights to rid its occupied territories of Russian soldiers.


    Maybe it is time for Putin to fall out of a window to protect the history of Mother Russia?

  5. Sam says:

    Russia has become the largest weapons supplier to Ukraine. 320 tanks have been transfered to UKR by the west– an additional 421 were abandoned by RU and placed into UKR service. IFVs, 210 from the west, 445 from RU, armored vehicles, 40 from the west, and 192 from RU.


    Ambassador Antonov should know that Putin’s military is the largest arms supplier to the Ukrainian military. Lol!

  6. cobo says:

    The Bear met the Tiger. A 400lbs Tiger meets an 800lbs Bear. The Bear can only win by burning down The Forest or by turning the Fifth Column within. That has become crystal clear. What will the Dragon do, there are Eagles and Lions, too.

    • Pat Lang says:

      kinda fun. The meaning is obscure but ominous.

    • Barbara Ann says:


      Your scenario is a result of Russia spending all her efforts developing wunderwaffen and doomsday weapons instead of military virtue in her army.


      It strikes me that MAD is an alternative version of Sartre’s No Exit in which the characters each have suicide vests and are consequently forced to be polite to one another for eternity. Eh bien, continuons…

      • cobo says:

        You can’t build virtue where there is none. We have a similar situation with our leadership, which I trust in our military one day to cure. When I go into a Starbucks, I can look over at the station where you get cream, sugar, straws and napkins, and tell about the management of that store. If it is regularly clean and tidy, the boss leads by example. If, however, it is often messy and even dirty, the manager is one who tells, but doesn’t model and do. The example of the boss sets the tone for the rest. It’s never “do as I say,” it’s always “do as I do.” That is why I still have faith in those who serve.

        • Peter Hug says:

          So, when I was at the National Cancer Institute, there was another postdoc who was from East Germany. The only way you could go to graduate school at the time was either to join the Communist Party, or the Army. He chose the Army. Back in 1989, when everything started to fall apart, he was a captain with his mortar company down in Bulgaria helping to harvest something (I think apples). By the time they were done, there were job-lots of soldiers walking off of trains in Hungary…he called his men together and told them that there was absolutely no mystery about what was about to happen, but he would consider it a personal favor if they would stick with him until they got back to their barracks. No one left. THAT is leadership. (And he’s a great guy. He’s back in Berlin now, with his wife and two daughters. Who are now in their twenties…I’m old.)

  7. mcohen says:

    I always thought you needed a pipe to make peace.Got that from watching too many westerns.

    It was known from the start that Russia cannot “subdue” ukraine without support from the west.So any form of a peace deal needs to come from the USA UK. The usual suspects.
    Containment is important.So is a ukr government that is prepared to accept that compromise can lead to a better future for its people.That can only be achieved with western assistance.
    However the predatory behaviour of big Farming needs to be curtailed.The land belongs to the Ukrainians.They Farm it.
    Why is the ukraine so poor when it produces so much of the world’s food.
    1.The land must remain in the hands of the Ukrainian people.All of it
    2.a fairer more equitable way must be introduced so that the Ukrainians can benefit economically from there agricultural products.
    3.Russia must withdraw all its troops and military support from the ukraine but at the same time be given a bigger caretaker role in the ukr government.Western influence must be represented through education and a system of governance based on the Westminster system.
    So in fact a hybrid system of both Westminster and Russian governance would be ideal.
    A sort of east west peace pipe.minus the predators who were skimming the profits.

    • cobo says:


      Obviously you’re smoking the “peace pipe.” What you got in there, brah? It must be good stuff..

      • mcohen says:

        Durban poison.only the best.this war has been on the cards for centuries.better keep the iodine handy.

        • cobo says:

          I don’t disagree with you mcohen. I just don’t think we can “peace” our way out of it.

          • mcohen says:

            There is a way out.Russia needs to withdraw all its military from ukraine including those areas annexed and the crimea and seek a political solution based on a combination of the Russian political system and the Westminster system.This has to be put in place by both the west and Russia.They broke it.they must fix it
            Without western support ukraine will have no choice.

    • Leith says:

      Caretaker role? They had one way back when with Yanukovich? That ended badly and led to Putin’s current invasion. It won’t fly with the Ukrainian public.

  8. Mike G says:

    Cobo: Bear = Russia? Tiger = Ukraine? Burn the forest = Nuclear option? Fifth Column = FSB? Dragon = China? Eagle = US? Lion = UK? What about cockerel = France. Horse, maybe = Germany.

    Germany i the only one without nuclear weapons.

  9. Sam says:

    War is ultimately about politics. That Ukraine is winning on the battlefield matters because Ukraine is exerting pressure on Russian politics. Tyrants such as Putin exert a certain fascination, because they give the impression that they can do what they like. This is not true, of course; and their regimes are deceptively brittle. The war ends when Ukrainian military victories alter Russian political realities, a process which I believe has begun.

    The Ukrainians, let’s face it, have turned out to be stunningly good warriors. They have carried out a series of defensive and now offensive operations that one would like to call “textbook,” but the truth is that those textbooks have not yet been written; and when they are written, the Ukrainian campaign will provide the examples. The have done so with admirable calm and sang-froid, even as their enemy perpetrates horrible crimes and openly campaigns for their destruction as a nation.

    Right now, though, we have a certain difficulty seeing how Ukraine gets to victory, even as the Ukrainians advance. This is because many of our imaginations are trapped by a single and rather unlikely variant of how the war ends: with a nuclear detonation. I think we are drawn to this scenario, in part, because we seem to lack other variants, and it feels like an ending.

    Using the mushroom cloud for narrative closure, though, generates anxiety and hinders clear thinking. Focusing on that scenario rather than on the more probable ones prevents us from seeing what is actually happening, and from preparing for the more likely possible futures. Indeed, we should never lose sight of how much a Ukrainian victory will improve the world we live in.


    IMO, and again I have no expertise in these matters, the nuclear bugaboo gets lots of ink in the media since it raises the emotional temperature. Media loves that since driving anxiety and hysteria is their shtick. While we should never discount the possibility that a cornered rat may be willing to take everyone down with them, we should also consider that Putin doesn’t actually get to push the red button. There are many in the chain of command until the actual guys who launch the nuclear ballistic missiles. Are they willing to commit suicide for Putin’s misguided invasion of Ukraine that is rapidly going south? I don’t think so. The war in Ukraine is not existential for Russia. She can live comfortably within her borders and at peace with her neighbors as long as she accepts that she can’t be a regional hegemon let alone a global one. OTOH, Putin’s now disastrous invasion is existential for him and his coterie. The only question is when do those with political influence outside of Putin’s immediate orbit make the move to oust him? In my naive opinion that is inevitable. Putin cannot survive his decision to invade Ukraine with a now apparent inadequate military even with massive domestic repression.

    • Al says:

      Sam, it seems that Putin will put either put a stake into the heart of Ukraine via his 200,000-300,000 new recruits in a mad dash into his new abandoned “properties” late winter….or failing, a stake into his own heart via a self emolated destructive cloud of his own MADness.

      • Pat Lang says:

        Wanna bet which?

      • Sam says:


        By the time Putin fields his 200k draftees on the frontline it’s quite conceivable he may be starting back from his border in several areas. Refighting for the same piece of turf that he won and then lost. Considering the quality of the new crop of soldiers in terms of training and weaponry and above all will to fight it could turn out to be an insurmountable challenge.

        In any case this war is not turning out the way he expected when he launched it in February.

    • Barbara Ann says:


      I disagree most vehemently with the author’s last paragraph in your quote. This is not about f’ing narrative closure. Mushroom clouds mean closure period, that is why so much ink is spilled on the subject. Since the 1960’s we have lived in a world where one bad mistake or misjudgment could end civilization. It very nearly happened in both 1962 and 1983. That’s 2 empty chambers in this game of Russian roulette that homo sapiens has devised for its amusement.

      The clear thinking that we need is that the players should agree to not even play the game. That is what has kept us from Armageddon for 60 years. Instead NATO expansion east and various other “provocations” as the Russians call them have led to a situation where we’ve again picked up the gun. If we keep doing this periodically, one day the chamber won’t be empty. All talk of probabilities – whether Putin will use nukes, whether the chain of command would obey orders etc is lower-level discussion about how many empty chambers we think are left.

      I’d say it didn’t have to be this way, but of course it did. We are an aggressive, tribal species and hubristic to boot. There was never any real chance we’d listen to Russian protests about red lines – who the hell do they think they are? So on February 24th Putin did something that made no sense to us. If he hadn’t the neocons would simply have pushed on until Russia was forced into some other, probably even more desperate response. And again, it simply does not matter what you or I think about whether or not this war is existential for Russia. The Russian leadership very clearly thinks it is.

      Finally, what many commentators forget is that a nuclear war won’t start with one party suddenly deciding that they all want to die, we’ll simply stumble into an escalation spiral no one can stop. We are close to this now and yet where are the voices calling for a de-escalation? Maybe the chamber will be empty again this time, or maybe like Christopher Walken’s character in The Deer Hunter we’ll come to our senses just as it is too late.

      • Sam says:

        Barbara Ann,

        ..Mushroom clouds mean closure period,

        Indeed. The question is who pulls the trigger? I would argue no provocation merits that trigger.

        Instead NATO expansion east and various other “provocations” as the Russians call them have led to a situation where we’ve again picked up the gun.

        This is Putin’s perspective. However the Eastern Europeans would argue they were not coerced into joining NATO but their history of occupation and their fear of Putin’s irredentism needed the safety umbrella of NATO to safeguard their sovereignty.

        This is part of the rub. The other is our own neocon faction and the strategic error by Bill Clinton, George Bush and Barack Obama who didn’t have IMO, the vision or the statesmanship to respond to Putin’s overtures to bring Russia into the “western” fold and create a new security architecture for Europe. That would have allowed us to focus on the actual threat which is the Chinese Communist Party.

        IMO, Putin didn’t think through the ramifications of his invasion of Ukraine. IMO, he believed his military was far stronger than it actually is and he could effect regime change in Ukraine with a decapitation strike on Kiev and the west would acquiesce just as they did with his military takeover of Crimea. That was a fatal misjudgment. Now that his military is on the run in areas occupied in Ukraine he is at a crossroads. His ego and of course his political survival will not permit him to admit his mistake and return his forces behind Russian borders. That is the necessary deescalation step.

        Of course, Ukraine having had its country destroyed and lives sacrificed will not be in any mood to compromise, especially since their military is forcibly evicting Putin’s forces. They will want complete territorial sovereignty.

        The question is simple – will Putin agree to a framework where he can’t have any regional hegemonic ambitions? What are the terms under which he vacates Ukraine including Crimea?

        The bottom line is the ball is in Putin’s court. Only he can cross the nuclear threshold. Can he admit and face the consequences domestically of his misjudgment? Of course what would the Eastern Europeans and the western foreign policy and national security establishment also agree to? What would satisfy them? The big problem IMO is Biden is weak and is in no physical & cognitive shape to lead.

        • Barbara Ann says:


          I’m not at all sure any terms will be needed for Russia’s exit from Ukraine, the AFU seem to have the matter well in hand.

          We’ll have to agree to disagree over the nature of the trigger, I maintain it could get out of control well before the use of TNW by either side. Were Russia to attack US satellites, for example, the response would take us up another rung.

          As for the demented narcissist, he will do as he is instructed.

      • Bill Roche says:

        B.A. Never mind “who the hell do those damn Russians think they are”? Who the hell do those damn Ukrainians think they are; demanding independence from Russia. Ukrainians (what ever the hell a Ukrainian is) demanding sovereignty to choose their own friends in the world. Such cheek! I d/n agree that NATO alone provoked Russia. It is worth remembering that every single Russian “colony” turned its back on its “Slavic master” in ’91 and looked West for security. Why? Russia’s attitude of superiority was the provocateur. It c/h used the end of the S.U. as an opportunity to show its western neighbors a/genuinely friendly face but it d/n. It continued to assert regional hegemony. The S.U. expired but dreams of Empire remained!

        Were Bush, Clinton, and Bush stupid in missing an opportunity to show a genuinely friendly face to Russia post ’91. Absolutely yes. The stupidity of both Western and Russian state departments is unbelievable.
        So on 2/24/22 Putin thought Russia was under existential threat from the west using Ukraine as a lever. That’s one way to look at it. Mine is Putin attacked Ukraine to eliminate it b/c he thinks UKRAINIAN EXISTENCE is the existential threat to Russia. BOTH views are probably right!
        Invasion is an order to kill and Putin decided to take action by destroying Ukrainian cities, and killing its citizens. The assailant is Russia. Possession of nukes doesn’t change the essential question … shall Ukraine be eliminated b/c Russia has nukes. Would the world be so willing if the quarry were Britain, Brazil, Canada, Finland, or Israel?
        If Ukraine is expendable to satisfy the Russians, what would any terrorist organization demand if it got a nuke. Born in ’46 I was one of many children doing the “duck n’ cover” in the ’50’s, cringing over Cuba in ’61, and hoping Nam w/n escalate to nuclear in the late 60’s. This is unpleasant.

    • Leith says:

      Sam –

      Great article by Snyder. My key takeaway was: “Making concessions to a nuclear blackmailer teachers him that this sort of threat will get him what he wants, which guarantees further crisis scenarios down the line. It teaches other dictators, future potential blackmailers, that all they need is a nuclear weapon and some bluster to get what they want, which means more nuclear confrontations.” Which is basically the same as what Colonel Lang mentioned somewhere down thread in just a single sentence.

      Snyder is a historian at Yale specializing in the modern history of Central and Eastern Europe; and was a Marshall Scholar at Oxford. Some of his recent lectures on the History of Ukraine are available on YouTube. Worth watching if you can stand his shirts and his arm waving.

  10. Barbara Ann says:

    Deluded fools, demented narcissists – a key weakness of MAD, highlighted brilliantly in Kubrick’s cinematic classic, is the potential fallibility of the squishy things who can actually trigger it. If we plan to take our chances for another 60 years we need to make sure the odds are stacked in our favor. Is it not prudent then to try and avoid exacerbating the delusions of a man who believes we are out to destroy his country?

    Putin’s military has been humiliated, it may be utterly so in the very near future. This must surely mean the end of the man’s political career. If sane minds were orchestrating this war that would be the sign for the olive branches and golden bridges to come out and be offered to the Russian leadership (via Antonov) in anticipation of what Strelkov calls “a military-political catastrophe”. No, not compromise over Ukrainian territory, but assurances that once that has been regained Russian territory (pre annexations) will not in turn be under threat. Russia should suffer the worst of all punishments; to be permitted to live with her ignominy. Heck, sack some neocons as a gesture of goodwill. I see no signs of such overtures. Diplomacy and statesmanship are nowhere to be seen. What I do see is the only man on the planet with the capability to kill us all compared to a dog rolling in a rotting carcass and suggestions that he be defenestrated.

    Colonel, TTG, you are professional soldiers and darn good ones. The Potemkin Russian army is exposed and rightfully it does not warrant your respect. But Russia’s nuclear arsenal and doomsday weapons remain under the CinC’s control and that fact alone demands respect for the guy’s mental state. Putin is delusional, his irredentist speeches confirm this. He may even be a fool, though I doubt it. And hope of his replacement is not a strategy. In lieu of that happening, every diplomatic effort should be made so a delusional man isn’t pushed into an irrational and desperate act thinking he’ll end up like Saddam, Gaddafi or even Milošević. A dacha outside Saint Petersburg or exile to a Russian Elba, its all the same to me. I for one would rather not have my hair mussed for the sake of vindictive revenge against one man.

    • Pat Lang says:

      MAD kept us from Armageddon fpo many years.

    • Fred says:

      Barbara Ann,

      “Heck, sack some neocons as a gesture of goodwill”

      Which ones do you think Biden should sack first? As to speeches, did you forget Biden’s speech in Philadelphia?

      • Bill Roche says:

        I wonder if Biden forgot his speech in Philadelphia.

        • Fred says:


          As Biden said to a Floridian in Punta Gorda a day ago: “Nobody f***s with a Biden”. Best proven by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia earlier this year, and again this week. I’m sure Biden got the message. Which is why the great Zelisnky is now demanding pre-emptive strikes into Russia by NATO. I’m sure General Milley will be just as professional as General Dempsey when a false flag is raised.

        • jim ticehurst.. says:

          I Think thats Why Hunter Biden and The High Crimes and Misdemeanors Of Many Types are In the News Today..No More Smoke or Mirrors For The Bidens…

          How About A Desperate DNC…Placing a New Golden
          Oscar Smiley Face on the Mantel…

          Mischele and B>H. Obama Replacing the Curtains..
          and the Wizard Lizard in The White House..And The
          Kool Aide Choir Shouts… Hell Yeh…

    • Datil D says:

      Barbara Ann
      My take is there won’t be any diplomacy because for the neocons driving this policy it was never about Ukraine and always about Russia.

  11. Lars says:

    I am reasonably sure that among the higher levels of the Russian military there are those who know that launching a nuclear strike is essentially the beginning of national suicide, since once that door is open, you will not be able to close it and you have no idea what you will find behind it. I do not consider nuclear weapons to be military ones,unless you consider them defensive ones, but just political ones and due to MAD, a lot of people, including Russians, know the finality of using them. Because of that, threats are not all that credible and the movies have forecast all kinds of destruction to be taken seriously.

    • Poul says:


      Why do you assume that the Russian officers are the ones who are against the use of nukes? What if there are no one who is against using nukes on Ukraine if needed?

      The US has no obligation to commit suicide with Russia on behalf of Ukraine, so the Russians may well take their chances if it comes to that.

      Remember the Cuba Crisis and the US Airforce’s nuke code of “00000000” . President Kennedy could well have been the only one who stopped that conflict from going nuclear.

      If you assume Putin will do it. Why do you assume his advisors and generals will be against?

      “We’re even learning more about the Cold War.

      (a) We were often in more danger from our generals than from the USSR. Tapes of meetings of the Executive Committee of the National Security Council (EXCOM) revealed our generals to be eager for war, willing to take insane risks of nuclear war for no rational reason. The eventual compromise — removing our nukes in Turkey for the USSR’s on Cuba (kept secret from us) — could have been made without taking us to the verge of WW3. For details see

      Recommended: Virtual JFK
      Audio tapes of the EXCOMM meetings (JFK is often the only same man in the room)
      “The World On the Brink: John F. Kennedy and the Cuban Missile Crisis“, Interactive Exhibits at the John F. Kennedy Library

      (b) Recent revelations show the USAF’s contempt for the nation’s civilian leaders: setting the launch codes to 00000000, and keeping them there. Real codes were installed in 1977. For more about this shameful history, gambling the safety of the nation and the world:

      “Keeping Presidents in the Nuclear Dark: The Case of the Missing ‘Permissive Action Links’”, Bruce G. Blair (President, former Minuteman missile control officer; Wikipedia entry), Center for Defense Information, 11 February 2004
      The USAF’s non-denial, Foreign Policy, 20 January 2014
      “Almost Everything in ‘Dr. Strangelove’ Was True”, Eric Schlosser, The New Yorker, 23 January 2014

  12. Al says:

    Lars, “Rationalizations” can lead to false conclusions. Putin has uttered his rationalization that as USA dropped 2 A Bombs on Japan, that allows him to do such.

    • Lars says:

      Yes, the US dropped two A-bombs in Japan and probably saved the lives of thousands of US soldiers. But it also showed the damage such bombs will cause and at the time, only the US had them. We live in a much different world now and as I have said, if you open that door now, you have no idea what you will find behind it. Putin will probably make multiple threats, but even if the does not understand the consequences of using such weapons, other in the Russian military do, leaving them with the choice of killing him, or be killed within a very short time after launch. As would millions of other Russians. They may cause widespread damage in the west, but they cannot count on it.

  13. Notfakebot says:

    Did the Soviets have the weaponry to destroy the world over in 1945?

    We beat the Soviets in the end because they came to terms with the fact that their system was truly inferior and not in their interest to continue. There was a window after the collapse of the USSR that gave us an opportunity to normalize ties with them as we had done with Japan and Germany post-WWII.

    I think it’s a mistake to topple Putin when it’s not clear how that will play out. It could lead to Armaggedon. It’s too great a danger to risk.

    Also we have set a proper deterent for other countries. I think the US has done its job here.

    Let Putin annex those parts, which he already has, and give him his off ramp. When he’s gone, we must negotiate a return to normal ties between Russia-West by demanding the return of those territories to Ukraine. We should be thinking further ahead and make plans to work with a post-Putin Russia to develop the sort of relationship where we won’t need NATO. IMO most practical solution to end this stupid war, restore Ukrainian territory, eventually at least and without more bloodshed, and establish a more lasting peace.

    I know sir you want to maintain a strong stance, but the US won’t turn Russia into nuclear wasteland. US is more responsible than that. If we don’t find a good solution, there is a better chance eastern Ukraine turns into a nuclear wasteland, meaning both Ukraine and Russia lose this war. We enter a whole new era with tensions worse than Cold War ever was and the odds of restoring relations with Russia become almost impossible. I don’t even want to entertain a worse case scenario.

    I am going to guess we are near an impasse, that Putin has done enough to deter Ukraine’s advance politically, not so much militarily. Time for heads to cool I hope.

    • Pat Lang says:

      The Soviets did not have a nuclear weapon until 1949. This was achieved through espionage. After that they rapidly built to peer status with the US and MAD was possible. The USSR disintegrated because Reagan’s buildup was something that the USSR’s rather primitive and lopsided economy could not compete with. As I have said before the neocons in the US provoked with their insistence on confining Russia to the smallest space possible with NSTO expansion as a tool. Nevertheless, Russia’s attempt to steal territory from Ukraine cannot be accepted.

      • jld says:

        “Russia’s attempt to steal territory from Ukraine cannot be accepted.”
        i.e. which “rationale” if any beats avoiding MAD?

        • Pat Lang says:

          Because it will set a precedent for Russia and all others.

        • Bill Roche says:

          I have always had a hankering for the Province of Quebec.
          Maybe France and America can just “take it” from Canada, split it up, and FU Monsieur Trudeau. Merci mon amis!

    • Leith says:

      @Notfakebot – “Let Putin annex those parts, which he already has…”

      That decision is not up to either the US or NATO. Ukraine would never agree. They would fight on to regain that Russian occupied territory no matter if the US stopped supplying them with ammo. This is and existential fight for them. Much more so than it is for Russia. If Putin stops fighting then Russia loses nothing; if Zelensky stops fighting the Ukrainians face death, torture, and rape by Khadyrovites, Wagnerites, and neo-KGB thugs. I doubt that Poland, the Baltics, Slovakia and Turkey will go along with permanent Russian control within parts of Ukraine. What would the US do then, as we could not (or would not) kick those countries out of NATO. I can’t imagine any kind of US pressure on Ukraine and her friendly neighbors would make them heel under Putin’s boot.

      • Peter Hug says:

        If we stop supporting them, this would eventually turn into Afghanistan on steroids, and it wouldn’t be pretty. It might take ten years, but I think Ukraine is prepared to do that.

    • Peter Hug says:

      Putin’s off-ramp is that he can leave (and return all the Ukrainians he’s kidnapped).

  14. Deap says:

    FYI: Suddenly my State Dept STEP notifications for travelers are exploding – I am getting them now from Spain to Belgium to Turkey, with new ones coming in by the hour.

    I signed up with STEP for extensive travels from Spain into the Black Sea back in 2013 and never took down those listed countries. But this is the first time I had so many show up all at once – Only 2nd stage warnings, but the range of affected countries is curious to say the least – from the State Dept perspective.

    • Mark Logan says:


      It appears to be a bureaucratic thing at Foggy Bottom. On their travel advisory page every nation’s listing was updated on Oct 4 & 5, the cast majority with the same threat Level that previously existed. IOW they gave the listing for every nation a fresh notification even if there was no change.

      I imagine they suffer from people looking at travel advisories and seeing an old date so they call to ask if it’s current.

  15. Jovan P says:

    In a video call to the Australian Lowy Institute, Zelensky called on Nato to preemptively hit Russia, so that the Russians don’t use their nukes. 🙂

    Après moi, le déluge.

    • blue peacock says:

      No different than when the invasion began he kept calling for NATO to enforce a No=Fly Zone over Ukraine. He should be asking for maximum support. It is for NATO & the US to decide what they’ll give him. Note that the west has not given him aircraft or long-range missiles.

  16. blue peacock says:

    Vladimir Putin has been confronted by one of his inner circle about his handling of the failing war in Ukraine, US intelligence has said.

    The insider complained to Putin about ‘mismanagement of the war effort’ and ‘mistakes’ being made by those executing the campaign, it is alleged.

    It is the clearest indication yet of rebellion among Russia’s elite over the war and the first evidence that Putin has been directly confronted about it.

    Meanwhile Russian business executives linked to Moscow’s political class described the situation inside the Kremlin as being at ‘breaking point’, and said in-fighting will break out soon if the tide of war keeps flowing in Ukraine’s direction.

    The news emerged after Ukraine scored a series of battlefield victories over Russia, forcing Putin to announce a deeply-unpopular mobilisation to shore up the front line, annex occupied territories, and threaten anyone who intervenes with nukes.


    Unless Putin’s war gets turned around and the Russian military reverses the recent Ukrainian successes on the battlefield, he’s gonna come under increased threats on his political survival. Who in contemporary Russia would have the political capital, the means and motive to effect a coup?

    • Barbara Ann says:

      blue peacock

      Hilarious, the Daily Mail (quoting WaPo) leaves the impression that “Russian business executives linked to Moscow’s political class” are about to effect a coup to bring the war to and end. Where is the reporting of the pressure Putin is under to obliterate Ukraine’s infrastructure and target the civilian and military leadership in Kyiv? I’m not saying one is more likely than the other, but the laundered NATO PSYOPS masquerading as MSM ‘news’ totally ignores the possibility that Putin is actually a bulwark against more extreme nationalist elements.

      • blue peacock says:

        Barbara Ann,

        Correct. Russian TV apparently is all about pushing Putin to demonstrate the iron fist. The hardliners in Russia appear to also have a large audience and strengths. They are calling for a wholesale change in their military leadership. The Chechen leader just got promoted with a bigger military rank. There is no doubt great uncertainty as to who would win a power struggle if Putin did get deposed.

        The battlefield fortunes can also change around. We don’t know if & when the Ukrainian military reach their own culminating point. It would appear that the coming winter would provide more information on the contours of the war. Either way the destruction continues with neither side showing any signs of backing down.

        • Pat Lang says:

          If the Russian Army collapses, the Culminating Point of the campaign will recede until it is well-nigh invisible.

          • blue peacock says:

            Col. Lang,

            Is there sufficient information now to make a determination if the Russian army collapses?

            In a report I read it said that the Ukrainian army is steadily “corralling” the 25,000 Russians in Kherson where they will have very limited resupply. It appeared to the author of that report that the Ukrainians would then keep a continuous barrage of artillery into that Russian conclave.

          • Pat Lang says:

            You will know it when you see it.

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