Russia is planning an offensive in the Donbas? I doubt it.

“The new intelligence finding estimates that the Russians are planning to deploy an estimated 175,000 troops and almost half of them are already deployed along various points near Ukraine’s border, according to a Biden administration official who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the finding.

It comes as Russia has picked up its demands on Biden to guarantee that Ukraine will not be allowed to join the NATO alliance.

The official added that the plans call for the movement of 100 Russian battalion tactical groups along with armor, artillery and equipment.

Intelligence officials also have seen an uptick in Russian propaganda efforts through the use of proxies and media outlets to denigrate Ukraine and NATO ahead of a potential invasion, the official said.

Asked about the intelligence finding as he set out for the presidential retreat at Camp David on Friday evening, Biden reiterated his concerns about Russian provocations.

“We’ve been aware of Russia’s actions for a long time and my expectation is we’re gonna have a long discussion with Putin,” Biden said.

Russia has dismissed the reports, accusing Washington of trying to aggravate the situation while blaming Moscow, the Kommersant newspaper said on Saturday, citing the Foreign Ministry.” Newsmax

Comment: There is a great deal of “maybe,” “potentially,” “possibly” etc. in these press reports and evidently in the underlying estimate. From that I deduce that DIA or whomever wrote the estimate does not have actual evidence of Russian intentions. Some people extrapolate from the combat intelligence aphorism that capabilities should be considered and not intentions to believe the same is true at the strategic level. This is a grave error.

The phenomenon of the “leak” of that estimate to the Washington Post has all the symptoms of a controlled release either from the Defense Department or the WH itself. Why would they do that? The DoD may think that State or CIA is not taking its opinion on this seriously. Why Biden’s WH clowns do anything is just a mystery.

IMO Putin is very concerned that Ukraine might be admitted to NATO and wants a guarantee that this will not happen. pl

https://www.newsmax.com/world/globaltalk/united-states-russia-ukraine/2021/12/04/id/1047316/

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49 Responses to Russia is planning an offensive in the Donbas? I doubt it.

  1. Sam says:

    Why should the United States care a rat’s ass about what happens in Ukraine? Why have we been meddling there since Nuland’s putsch?

    I can see why we should help defend Taiwan and the sea lanes in Asia. As former prime minister of Japan Abe noted couple weeks ago, an attack on Taiwan is an attack on Japan. We have a strong interest in preventing an Asian conflagration since we are so dependent on goods from Asia including semiconductors manufactured in Taiwan.

    OTOH, it would appear we have zero strategic necessity from Ukraine other than they seem to pay a lot of baksheesh to our political and governmental leaders.

    • Pat Lang says:

      Sam

      I agree.

      • Sam says:

        Col. Lang,

        I can see oil & gas expert Hunter has a strong interest in Ukraine since he was paid a few big bucks to advise the Burisma board of directors when he was not smoking crack and messing around with whores. Or while on it since that’s as close to oil & gas that he got. Maybe papa has a similar interest since he was the final intended recipient of the payola.

        Why would we trust our intel agencies particularly after the Iraq WMD and Russia Collusion hoaxes?

    • scott s. says:

      I suspect (with no data) that it has more to do with Poland.

  2. Deap says:

    Study below discovers how liberals and conservatives see themselves; and more importantly how they see each other.

    No surprise – liberals scored the worst in misperceptions about conservatives – mainly because most do not even know any let alone ever sat down and talked to them.

    Such misperceptions do drive the liberal media and public policy decisions today – including who benefits ginning up fear over Ukraine …or covid, or white supremacists, or anti-vaxxers …………..ad nauseam. Equally, who benefits diminishing China’s growing role in global affairs.

    It is no longer a hunch. This study attempts to provide objective data to support of political perceptions, and political misperceptions

    https://redstate.com/jeffc/2021/12/05/what-if-conservatives-pulled-off-a-jussie-smollett-type-of-hoax-n486873

  3. Jim says:

    Judging by extreme deception Jan. 6 Congressional Democrat [and at least one Republican Liz Cheney] Operation, the Fat Lady is still on stage.

    This Jan. 6 Congressional Con, a revised cut-out of Crossfire Hurricane, and all that this was/is and implies — what is function of the Jan. 6 mutation?

    Both criminal operations, Jan6 and CH shared goals: destroy Trump Phenomena and in particular [by logical extension]: ideas of normal relations with Russian Federation, of which this was obvious CH goal, and though perhaps opaque, I suspect also goal of Jan6 operation. [Look no further than immediate Big Tech and Big Media smear campaign, Jan6 forward: against Deplorable Nation. And brief footnote: whatever else Deplorable Nation might be, these folks by and large seem immune to anti-Russian hatred constantly pushed by Borg, and Neo-Cons, Big Tech/Media; perhaps because DN themselves have been vilified by smears etc. constantly since 2015, and know what it feels like. And so any push for US war against Russia immediately has a problem: about half the country cannot be propagandized into going along. And thus: Perhaps big goal of Jan6 is to “change” such “inconvenient” perceptions.]

    CH was to destroy the big guys around Trump including him; Jan6, to mop up civilian and citizens that dare express First Amendment rights of assembly, and who are generally deemed “Deplorables” even if their man [or woman] for highest office in land may no longer be the Donald.

    It seems to me that, even though CH’s underpinnings now exposed as smoke and mirrors — its Ghosts live on.

    Most particularly, vis a vis “justifications” to provoke Russian Federation in particular, and its strategic partners, such as People’s Republic of China.

    Or at least, this is the public face of it all — and what a woeful, simplistic and silly face it is. But, nonetheless, extremely dangerous face, given how mistakes can have grave consequences, especially when Neo-Con war mongering actors surround Biden.

    Be that as it may, it is this face, it seems to me, as organizing principals:
    1] around which various deceptions and attempts to confuse and divide USA public;
    2] and, thus, masking of what any concrete policies our country might or should be concerned about, strategically, towards Russia and China, in particular,
    3] and developing world in general [such as Syria, Lebanon, and more broadly, nations that aspire to a “non-aligned” status.]
    4] Including those non-aligned states such as Iran and NATO member Turkey, for example.

    This “strategy” or USA “foreign policy”, what ever it is, filtered through this face.

    This is a face with anti Russian sentiment, bigotry, discriminatory malice written all over it.

    And this face — as is, is what we now see, in the Western covid response: many elements of outright fascism — that is, based on a rank sense of what Obama and others, wont to label “American Exceptionalism” – now enforced with threats of and actual coercion.

    I’ve often found it intriguing that Obama himself wanted so badly to be most public face of this hideous idea, hideous in terms of its actual goals, not those he publicly pretended to believe.

    Just look at some of most obvious contradictions, including most obvious one: saber rattling for war with Russia – what sort of imbecile actually believes “American Exceptionalism” — what it is now — has any value for ordinary Russians, much less, its ruling bureaucracy?

    Who, besides the USA elites – some of them – and UK elites and NATO countries. . . who besides these, advocates for “rules” based international order, defined by them – who besides them in rest of world have any rational use for this?

    The covid calamity [and failed Western response] if nothing else has torn off any legitimacy of this idea as having any value, in terms of actually caring for the lives of human beings.

    All the lying and deception and censoring etc. of Big Tech/Media on behalf of failed Western covid response “experts” cannot hide fact this failure is a failure, with catastrophic consequences, that is ongoing and continuing.

    Biden/Putin summit Tuesday, their second in less than six months.

    After June 16 meeting, Biden said purpose of it, to “manage the relationship between two powerful and proud countries: A relationship that has to be stable, and predictable. ”

    “No president of the United States could keep faith with the American people if they did not speak out to defend our democratic values, to stand up for the universal and fundamental freedoms of all men and women have in our view: that’s just part of the DNA of our country. So human rights are going to always be on the table, I told him,” Biden also said.

    The contradictions between the West’s hubris that its “values” are “THE VALUES” for the world, versus the rest of the world – and many Americans like myself who have had enough of what these values actually look like, 21 months into pandemic – these “values” contradictions will not be resolved at Tuesday’s summit.

    Nor will Biden and his entourage and NATO end their simplistic and empty threats against Russia and her people – using Ukraine as just one excuse to act out this foolishness.

    If one is to believe Dimtry Orlov, in a recent essay, spiced with humor: western Elites have totally lost the plot, and they did it all on their own; and now the common man and woman, seeing Russia as a beacon? — of what once was, and could have been, here in USA? . . . and correlative to the present tense: “expansion of Russia’s soft power.”

    https://thesaker.is/russias-greatest-weapon-is-not-a-weapon/

    This morning, Russian foreign ministry published a myths list, including:
    “Myth 5: NATO’s presence enhances regional security.
    Rebuttal: This is an illusion. The consequences of the NATO operations in Yugoslavia, Libya and Afghanistan come to mind.”

    Patrick Lawrence, in a Special to Consortium News, titled “Obituary for Russiagate: The fraudulent fable has died, but its consequences live on” published Dec. 1 includes discussion of consequences of this entire Cover Story that, although false – this made no difference to its purveyors.

    “This leads us to the essential question we now face, or one of them. What are the consequences of the Russiagate scam? If it rested on lies start-to-finish, this is not to say it did not exact its price. It did. The price is high, and we are fated to pay it for some time to come. . . .

    “In effect, Russiagate has tipped the American polity upside down. It is the illiberal liberals among us, righteous as the old Puritan ministers of New England, who now prosecute a regime of censorship and suppression of dissent that is at least as severe and anti-democratic as what conservatives had going during the Cold War (and in my view worse).

    “It is they who seek to cow ordinary Americans into the new, weird idolatry of authority, no matter that those to whom the nation is urged to bow are proven liars, law-breakers and propagandists.”

    https://consortiumnews.com/2021/12/01/patrick-lawrence-obituary-for-russiagate/

    With the Jan6 mutation of the above, with no end of this in sight at this time. . . what possible “values” are we even talking about anymore, eh, Joe Biden?

    One last note, on the power of persuasion and what, prior to covid, had been considered the “acceptable” Big Media for those with prestige and expertise, to go public.

    Up until March 2020, NYTimes, CNN, WAP, WSJ, and to an extent, FOX, were considered the vehicles.

    With the explosion of suppression and canceling and deplatforming and outright censorship, many men and women of great prestige and knowledge and skills, in public health, medicine, data science, etc. . . . well guess what?

    Since the above big media outlets and their BIG TECH overlords would not have them. . . . they have been broadcasting their messages on all manner of “alternative” media!

    This is a fascinating phenomena.

    Some even appear on Alex Jones now.

    And this is only going to continue and grow; it is a fascinating development.

    Resistance to this fascism means that all those “alternative” media that were supposed to be the place where “only” deplorable congregate — is now congregated by among the best minds and those with the most knowledge and wisdom and skills in medicine and public health — who also just so happen to understand the dangers of covid death shots, as well as the perfidy of the West, on purpose, banning actual and effective treatments of the disease, when it appeared.
    -30-

    • Deap says:

      Does Crossfire Hurricane live on, or does the need to cover up deep state complicity in Crossfire Hurricane live on? Probably both.

  4. d74 says:

    It seems to me, the most immediate danger is an operation of Ukraine against the Donbass. The signs are quite clear. The Minsk agreements are no longer respected. The two guarantors, Germany and France, have tacitly let Minsk fall down and support Ukraine. Hence the concentration in front of the grey zone and artillery attacks (122mm and 152mm forbidden by Minsk) plus Turkish UAV (all UAV forbidden). The bombings target civilians and civilian infrastructure, as if to make them flee.

    The Nazis in Kiev are becoming hysterical in their Russophobic hatred. They coldly claim an ethnic cleansing of the Donbass. The deeper Ukraine gets into the crisis, the more delirious the intentions become.

    On the other hand, Russia has granted a de facto customs union. Both republics have gradually adopted Russian standards, mainly currency, industry and education. Russia granted Russian citizenship to any citizen of the republics who applied for it. My last information says about 1/3 of the eligible ones did it. All this is in accordance with the objective of the 2 republics’ union with Russia.

    The Russian government has a constitutional obligation to protect all Russian citizens.
    If Ukraine attacks, the Russians will intervene. In what form, depth and duration? Hard to say. See Patrick Armstrong.
    It will therefore be easy, and profitable, to accuse the Russians of aggression. All that will be needed is to prove that babies have been torn from their incubators by the Russian bear…

    There is still hope that the Russian intervention will be closely located. A witness on the spot write yesterday: “There is no more concentration of troops on the Russian-Ukrainian border (where I live) than there is butter on a spit.
    And as no Western media has correspondents on the spot, it is possible to tell anything, because apart from the ten-fifteen zigotos like me, who would go and inform AFP or Figaro?” [Replace AFP by CNN and Figaro by NYT]

    If Ukraine does not attack and maintains its pressure, Russia will not be able to intervene and the 2 Republics will suffer a little more than the previous 6 or 7 years.

    • Eol says:

      I agree, and I put money that it will happen during the olympics in Beijing 2022, in line with previous provocations (organised by the same people.. who happen to be in power now)

  5. walrus says:

    I glanced at Laurance Rees new study of Hitler and Stalin (30 years of research said the blurb) in a bookshop last week.

    There it was again; the forward and afterword compared both tyrants to Putin, noticed alleged similarities and cautioned the reader about Putins alleged proclivities. This is not the first time a scholarly “history” of Europe turns out to be a thinly veiled excuse for more Putin bashing. Even Timothy Snyder has joined in.

    It is quite clear that the entire western academic establishment (Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, Yale, etc.) has been brought on board and as usual, is demonstrating their ass licking skills for a few dollars.

  6. Barbara Ann says:

    The “Controlled by Russia” area highlighted on that map misses the bigger picture somewhat.

    I’d be pretty certain Russia retains both the capabilities and intentions to guarantee Ukraine remains outside NATO, regardless of any guarantees Biden may make. Such an event would represent a huge strategic defeat (for Russia) and must therefore be a red line. If the Russiaphobic crazies in the WH or elsewhere in Biden’s administration insist on pushing Russia over that line I would expect the reaction to be swift & unequivocal.

    What would that reaction be? Who knows, but invading and occupying Ukraine seems an unlikely possibility. On the other hand, an accelerated move to reabsorb Belarus and deploy Russian troops on the borders of Poland, the Balts and within 90km of Kyiv might be a suitable response. It would certainly give potential NATO forces in Ukraine something to ponder.

    • Leith says:

      Barbara –

      That is an old old map. Probably dates back several years. You can tell by the labeling of Kharkiv as being under “Occupation of RSA”. That happened only for two days in April 2014 before Ukr Special Forces retook the RSA building; and for a few hours in March 2014 before Kharkiv city cops regained control on the same day.

      • Pat Lang says:

        Leith
        Got a new map?

        • Leith says:

          Couldn’t find one. But the one below, also old, is interesting if it is still up to date. I had no idea there were so many Russian speakers (20 to 40%) in Odessa and further west in Chernivtsi.

  7. mcohen says:

    it has taken a lot of hard work to set up trade between the USA and Ukraine.if putins stand over tactics win the day,this will cost the usa dearly in more ways than one

    • ancientarcher says:

      mcohen,
      trade between USA and Ukraine? what trade? Does Ukraine have anything apart from toilet cleaners and household help that the USA can use? Oh sorry, the US already gets those from the southern neighbour, so no need for Ukraine there.

      Anything else that you think is included in the trade between Ukraine and USA?

      • Deap says:

        Cruise ships used to hire a lot of Ukrainians – they provided very well trained dancers for the cruise ship stage shows, and many spoke enough English to provide good guest services staff on board – front desk, shore excursions, housekeeping, and food service.

        Ukraine port calls by cruise ships were also very popular, which is where one also learns about the long historic connection between Imperial Russia and what is now independent Ukraine.

        Yet candid comments by local tour guides indicated the primary draw to Western Europe was greater access to consumer goods; not because of freedom, liberty or anti-Russian feelings .

        Now that Russia is supplying better quality consumer goods and well-developed new infrastructure, perhaps the appeal of Western Europe for Ukraine is not as strong. Whatever, it remains a tense relationship. Which is not surprising.

        We have very tense relationships in America between Democrats and Republicans – very different world views – one internal (MAGA) – one external- (Davos Globalists).

      • mcohen says:

        ancientarch.some stats.

        https://www.ustradenumbers.com/country/ukraine/

        note that russia and China are in the past the top 2 trade partners,but USA exports are up.

        War is run by bankators not generals.

        https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/biden-putin-talk-tuesday-xi-wings

    • Yeah, Right says:

      If the USA has maneuvered themselves so that “trade” between the USA and Ukraine is important then that is a display of strategic genius akin to ensuring that the US becomes heavily dependent upon semiconductors that are made on an island not much further than 100 miles off the Chinese mainland.

      I just don’t….. greater minds than mine are responsible for US policy, obviously.

    • TTG says:

      Trade with Ukraine means nothing to the US. However, Ukraine’s trade with Europe and the rest of the world means everything to Ukraine. That diversification way from having Russia as a single trading partner is important. Russia’s efforts to minimize the use of Ukraine’s oil and gas pipelines is hastening that diversification.

      • Fred says:

        TTG,

        “Russia’s efforts to minimize the use of Ukraine’s oil and gas pipelines is hastening that diversification.”

        Germany is the one behind Nordstream II, which will certanly minimize use of Ukraine’s pipelines. Why should we give a damn about Ukraine if Germany, and by extension the rest of the EU, is doing that?

        • JerseyJeffersonian says:

          I suspect that Victoria “Cookie Monster” Nuland’s remark, “Fuck the EU”, left a mark.

          The EU flatters itself if it believes that they are under threat of invasion by the Russian Republic. I mean, what earthly reason would they want anything other than whatever money they can accrue for their energy products? I don’t think that they are jonesin’ for an influx of, or even influence from, a bunch of degenerate cultural Marxists, or Gaia-worshipping Luddites, or to be “enriched” by a wave of Turd-World invaders as has been the reality in Western Europe. Heaven forfend.

          Nope, just quarantine the nations flagellating themselves with this lunacy, and let them stew in their own juices. But to permit NATO to gain a beachhead in Ukraine; not on your life.

  8. Leith says:

    I’m onboard with English Outsider’s opinion from last week that it is the Europeans that are pushing the ‘Ukraine Good/Russia Bad’ trope. Possibly they are proselytizing so hard is because they have so much money invested in the Ukraine. Plus there is some bad history there.

    NATO’s Stoltenberg is the one pushing to admit the Ukraine into NATO. And he says publicly that Russia would pay a high price if it made a move on Ukraine. What is with that guy? I thought the Scandinavians were supposed to be peaceful critters? Thankfully for the world Stoltenberg’s term as NATO Secretary General ends soon. Let’s hope they get someone in there who is less antagonistic.

    • English Outsider says:

      Leith – maybe one could say that it’s the European governments pushing the Russophobic line. And how! But for the general public in Europe, and particularly in Germany, I believe there is at least some resistance to being marshalled into that camp by the US/UK neocons.

      Last week I ventured the opinion that it was the EU that was fully as responsible for the Ukrainian tragedy as the US, perhaps more so.

      I didn’t like to leave that assertion unsubstantiated so looked out some references, from Dr North’s old blog, that showed the EU had been intent on absorbing the Ukraine from early this century. Dr North is au fait with EU policy documents and directives as few others are and the evidence he unearthed on that at the time, particularly on expenditure, is conclusive.

      The problem is that there’s really no such thing as “The EU”, not in the sense there’s a “United States” or a “Russia”. It’s a tangle of power centres. Simplified best by Juncker when he said that nothing gets past Brussels that doesn’t get past Berlin and Paris first.

      Juncker was a wily old fox and quite good on the in vino veritas. The dreaded “Brussels”, or at least dreaded by those of us who are irreclaimable Eurosceptics, is here as often elsewhere merely the front man. Brussels is an instrument of German/French foreign policy.

      Mainly in this case German foreign policy. The only major country in the West that still has a successful economy, and that dwarfing any other economy in Europe. Probably the only major country that’s solvent too. It has to make up its collective mind. Is to keep in step with the US/UK and regard the Russians as hostile and to be warded off? Or is to strike out on its own and focus on trade with the Russians.

      It’s very much getting to the stage where it can’t carry on doing both. As is seen here, Scholz’s new Ostpolitik is still couched in terms of what “the EU” should do (https://www.politico.eu/article/youre-so-vague-germanys-scholz-calls-for-new-russia-policy). But in reality it’s Berlin’s decision, not Brussels’. It is Scholz, maybe as much as Biden and certainly very much more than Johnson, who will determine what happens in the Ukraine.

      • irf520 says:

        >>the EU had been intent on absorbing the Ukraine from early this century.

        Well, Hitler was certainly intent on absorbing it. Looks like the Germans never changed their objective, only their tactics.

        • d74 says:

          @ irf520
          Off topic. Memories.

          IRF520: N-Channel 100V – 0.115 Ω – 10A- TO-220
          Low Gate Charge- Power MOSFET. (obsolete now).

          I used it a lot.
          Multi sources, convenient, beefy, cheap.
          When choosing this Aka, did you have this meaning in mind?
          If so, I am delighted!

        • English Outsider says:

          Yes, Panzers are so yesterday. Absorption by trade agreement is more efficient.

          Except that the position is different from that of 2013. The effects of the war have masked the underlying effect of the alteration in Ukrainian trade flows. War or not, increasingly cut off from its previous trade with Russia as a result of its agreement with the EU the Ukraine now has a semi-derelict economy. It could not now look to be absorbed into the EU even at some future stage. The transfer payments that would be needed would be beyond the capacity of Germany to pay, particularly since the new German government is hoping to take a firm stand against transfer payments even to existing members and possibly even when disguised as pandemic/green recovery bonds. The “frugal four” looks like becoming the frugal five.

          Europe cannot therefore contribute to salvaging the Ukrainian economy. Russia’s “you broke it, you mend it” will be met by a decisive “No”.

          I believe this is why so few employees at the Minsk Tractor Works joined in the recent pro-EU demonstrations in Belarus. Though the Lukashenko government is no doubt thoroughly unsatisfactory, they looked over the border at what has happened in the Ukraine and thought “Not that, not for us.”

      • Leith says:

        EO –

        Thanks for the update. Has Scholz named a Foreign Minister yet? One candidate, the Green’s Baerbock, is agianst Nordstream 2 and has argued for a tougher policy against Russia.

        • English Outsider says:

          Leith – I seems so. But the German Greens are just weird. How can one be a tree-hugger and yet be as hawkish as they are? It looks as if they’re going to use “human rights” and “the rule of law” to justify a more active interventionism.

          Isvestia:- “This can hardly be seen as a hopeful situation for Russia … . Moreover, Ms. Baerbock has already distinguished herself as a rather sharp critic of Russia. It seems to me that we must reckon with the bad news for us becoming increasingly dense.”

          Grabbed that from here-

          https://www.eurotopics.net/en/272104/what-does-germany-s-new-cabinet-portend-for-europe

          – and noted another press extract – “It should be Germany’s mission to move beyond the shadow of historical guilt and end half a century of ‘inviolable’ pacifism. And to assume the leadership of a Europe that needs to redefine its mission in a world that is completely different from the post-World War II world.”

          That Italian newspaper the second extract is taken from is a day behind the fair. As argued above, Germany has been the determining influence in Europe for a while. Just looks like Scholz is going to step out from behind the curtain and make it visible.

          • LeaNder says:

            <i<BRUSSELS, Nov 30 (Reuters) – Ukraine Prime Minister Denys Shmygal accused Russia on Tuesday of being "absolutely" behind what he called an attempt to organise a coup to overthrow the pro-Western government in Kyiv, citing intelligence.

            Now what is it exactly? Russia is invading anytime soon, or it is planning a coup in Kyiv?

            **********
            Whom would you trust more, the owl or the bat?

            https://irrussianality.wordpress.com/2021/08/25/the-owls-against-the-bats-interview-with-argumenty-i-fakty/

            Interview with Paul Robinson about a publication on military intelligence:

            There is an intriguing chapter in the book, “The Battle of The Owls and the Bats”. Is this about the rivalry between Russian and Ukrainian military intelligence?

            The approval in 2016 of the new emblem of Ukrainian military intelligence – an owl that penetrates the territory of Russia with a sword, with the motto on the shield: Sapiens dominabitur astris (“The wise will rule over the stars”) was a symbolic step. The emblem refers to the informal symbol of Russian military intelligence – the bat – and its motto: “Above us – only the stars.”

      • English Outsider says:

        Apologies for typing error. I do check but missed -. “Is Germany to keep in step with the US/UK and regard the Russians as hostile and to be warded off? Or is it to strike out on its own and focus on trade with the Russians.”

  9. Deap says:

    Beginning to sense Russia- Russia -Russia is being played by a new team of politicos. This time it’s the GOP is accusing Biden of being soft on communism (aka Putin), and they want to set Biden up as a Putin-lover because of Biden’s support for the Nordstream pipeline. So now they threaten to rescind this support if Putin invades Ukraine.

    In other words, this sabre rattling coming from somewhere inside the US over Russia-Russia-Russia is little more than GOP talk tough theater at Biden’s expense. Stupid move, GOP. Not enough mileage left in Russia-Russia-Russia. Ukraine simply is not on anyone’s horizon – good, bad or indifferent at least out here on the west coast.

    Covid is still strangling us in Calif – with administrative overkill and mandate-mania; not because of any greater case counts. That is the main topic out here. So if they give us a war in Ukraine, no one in California will show up.

  10. TTG says:

    I don’t think Russia intends to invade Ukraine, either. There are too many downsides to an invasion. Even militarily it could be costly. The Ukraine military, although still no match for Russia, is a lot better than it was in 2014 and their regular units and reserves have been coached on resistance warfare. Also, a war in Ukraine won’t play well with the Russian people. I truly thought the Russians would have come in in 2014 when Ukraine was flat on its ass militarily. However, Putin thought better of it then and he’ll surely think better of it now.

    Understandably, Putin doesn’t want Ukraine in NATO. So far, it doesn’t look like NATO wants Ukraine in NATO, either. I doubt Biden will insist on NATO entry. What he may have to promise Putin is that he won’t supply Ukraine with offensive weapons. Putin still won’t be happy if Ukraine gets a solid A2/AD and further NATO standardization, but he still has the Crimea and the all important bases at Sevastopol.

    • Barbara Ann says:

      TTG

      The possibility and if it comes to it threat of such a deployment in Ukraine reminds me very much of the circumstances that led up to the Cuban Missile Crisis. This time the roles would be reversed.

      • TTG says:

        Barbara Ann,

        Exactly. If we were to put our cruise missiles or ballistic missiles in Ukraine or the Balkans it would be exactly like a reverse Cuban Missile Crisis. And we should expect Putin to react accordingly. It would be prudent and wise for Biden to promise Putin that we will not do such a thing and even sign a treaty to that effect. National defense in the Balkans and in Ukraine is quickly moving towards a total defense strategy, offering a poison pill to deter aggression. I still have my copy of Hans Dach Bern’s “Total Resistance” heavily annotated by myself and several members of ODA 334. It advocates the same strategy.

      • TTG says:

        I meant Baltics rather than Balkans. Don’t know why I made that mistake. I just took out my copy of Total Resistance. It was translated into English by the JFF Special Warfare center and Colonel Wendell Fertig wrote the introduction.

  11. Gal says:

    I was thinking it was all theater to cover for the current state of finances eveywhere, but after reading this old essay, it could well be that some have thought of solving their really accute economic problems the same way

    https://www.voltairenet.org/article187508.html

  12. Babeltuap says:

    Ideal time right now if Putin wants to make a move. Holidays and Biden will do zero but cry to legacy media. Most of the region is pro Russian anyway. Who is going to stop him? Yeah, nobody. We can’t even secure our own border. He won’t do anything. The second he does the CCP will jump in. Now what? WWIII over this country the size of basically TX. No. Nobody will do anything.

    • Yeah, Right says:

      One thing that might stay Putin’s hand is that the Russians may think there is some value in the concept of “the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war”.

      Crimea is the obvious counter-point, but the Russians did go to extraordinary lengths to claim that it was the Crimean people who decided to breakaway from the Ukraine and seek union with Russia.

      Views vary, of course, on the legitimacy of that claim, but it is undeniable that the Russians did make a big effort to insist that their acquisition of Crimea was carried out by means Other Than By War.

      There would be no such excuse if the Russian Army launched a full-on military invasion of the Ukraine.

      Their only options would be to seize a buffer zone and accept the argument that they are an Army of Occupation, or to overrun the entire country and then install a puppet government.

      Either way, that would be way costly for minimal benefit.

  13. Balint Somkuti, PhD says:

    Apart from classic russian xenophobia about foreign powers building up military strength near their borders (Napoleon, Hitler), Putin mentioned something really worth remembering tho it wnet unnoticed in the usual MSM histeria.

    He said somerthing like if Ukraine join NATO, then NATO will be closer to Moscow, than the USSR in Cuba. In case of a nuclear warheaded weapon launch there would be something like 5 minutes flight time to Moscow.

    The bear is not a toy as the ancient szekler saying goes, and Russian leadership has managed to surprise the West already in Crimea. I fear that these pointless saber rattling will be to the detriment of all of us especially here in the EU.

  14. ancientarcher says:

    I think this ra-ra-ra on Russia is being ramped up only by the media on orders from the WH. Even the Ukrainians said until a few days ago that they see no massed Russian presence on the borders, when the Western media was ramping up the propaganda.

    Methinks, all this is done in order for Biden to score brownie points when he has the teleconference meeting with Putin. The WH can then announce that Biden forced Putin to withdraw his troops from the border. In reality, there were no troops massed there before nor will any be massed there afterwards. But Biden gets political brownie points for having forced Putin to do is bidding, possibly in exchange for concessions that the US has to make to Russia now (Nordstream II?).

    What a farce!! And again, the starring role is of the media. The Western media seems to the best offensive weapon the west has. No hypersonic weapons can compare with the hyperbole from the Western MSM. Take that Putin!

  15. Fred says:

    I recommend NATO member Germany send their army, fresh off the night time torch lit parade for the chancellor, to Ukraine. I’m sure that the people they are buying all that natural gas from using the non-Ukrainian pipeline won’t mind. Maybe Boris, if he doesn’t need them to defend Rotherham, can send the royal navy. Ours is a little tied up with rainbow flags and Asian pivots.

  16. blue peacock says:

    What’s the swag on why this intel now?

    It is always of interest to me to understand the motivation of our government leadership.

  17. Eol says:

    Here is a counter idea: Ukraine (with tacit aquisience of usual suspects) is planing some sortof of offensive against the breakaway regions in the east, and I would not be surprised of this is coordinated to happen when Putin visits Beijing fduring the Olympics (the people behind it did with Georgia on 2008, and Sochi 2014, and they are in power again). The loud bells about the Russian boogeyman in the west are just part of the cover… Ukraine attacks, that inconvenient fact doesn’t get reported (remember this is the cabal that believe their best asset is that they control the narrative, what is real or not), russia is then forced to intervene, then gets painted as the aggressor. Qui Bono? NATO .. a useless bureaucracy gets a renewed reason to exist. Qui Bono? The anglo world.. any potential reaproachment of Germany with russia (and China vía railwways) is dead on its tracks for the upcoming century. Biggest loser is Ukraine, but remember its currently managed by extreme right wingers that are close to nazism (with an irrational hate against Russia)

  18. A. Pols says:

    I do wonder though if the Russophobes in the Biden administration may push for integration of Ukraine into NATO. If so that could be real trouble though and it would be plausible, I think, that the Ukrainian govt. might become emboldened by that and might act as the Polish govt. did in 1939, imagining themselves strong enough to prevail against Germany. I don’t mean to be predicting, but it doesn’t seem out of line to think that maybe Russia would swiftly occupy all of eastern Ukraine, right up to Kiev, and leave the rest for the west. After all, modern Ukraine is sort of a 20th century Brunswick Stew, cobbled together from remnants of the old Austro-Hungarian Empire, and, while the Western part has little connection with Russia, the East does.

  19. jim ticehurst says:

    All I Can Find on the NET is Chatter and Images of everything Chinese…Todays Main Story…They may be Using Chinese Cargo Ship to Hide Ready Missle Launch systems designed to fit into the cargo Containers..Like thier Mobile systems..350 Mile Range…Sitting offshore..Now..Ready to Launch..That Chinse has a Massive Low frequency Radio system that can reach thier Subs underwater..Chinas more Aggressive direct threats to Taiwan ..Than Russians Own Staging..More Concern by The US SecDEF about Chinas Space Threats and Cyber warfare and attacks than anything Russian..Its only The Biden Ministers who want the Focus on Russia and the Ukraine…Running Cover for The Chairman..?? Perhaps Mr Putin is merely staging in Anticipation of The Obvious…Europes Survival….I/E Energy Resources..may depend on the Outcome…Perhaps…

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