Nope, I did not know that. But thank God we have retired General Dave Petraeus to clue us in. He wrote the following 10 days ago:
- A successful encirclement of Russian forces fleeing Izyum would result in the destruction or capture of significant Russian forces and exacerbate Russian manpower and morale issues.
- The Russian MoD’s inability to admit Russian failures in Kharkiv Oblast and effectively set information conditions is collapsing the Russian information space. Kremlin-sponsored TV propagandists offered a wide range of confused explanations for Ukrainian successes ranging from justifications that Russian forces are fighting against the entire Western Bloc, to downplaying the importance of Russian ground lines of communication (GLOCS) in Kupyansk.
- The withdrawal announcement further alienated the Russian milblogger and Russian nationalist communities that support the Kremlin’s grandiose vision for capturing the entirety of Ukraine. Russian milbloggers condemned the Russian MoD for remaining quiet, choosing self-isolation, and distorting situational awareness in Russia.
Turns out that General Dave experienced premature military orgasm. It is true that the Russians retreated from Izyum, but they were not surrounded. Putin has never claimed the “grandiose vision for capturing the entirety of Ukraine.” He has been quite clear–as recently as the press conference this week at the SCO–Russia is going to secure the Donbas. What about growing dissent in Russia about the SMO? Putin, based on his recent news conference at the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, could give two shits about the feelings of “the Russian milblogger and Russian nationalist communities.”
I am citing Petraeus not because I respect his alleged military “genius.” I do not not. General Dave had the reputation at West Point as the consummate sychophant. The other cadets said he would marry the Commandant’s homely daughter just to get ahead. Guess what? He did. I cite Petraeus because his views are emblematic of the Washington national security establishment who are totally committed to lying about the reality in Ukraine. No matter what the actual situation is on the ground, Ukraine is winning, Russia is losing and it is just a matter of time before Russia implodes. This theme has been trotted out and paraded around the internet almost every month since March by Ukraine’s western enablers.
The Hill just published another installment of this delusional analysis by Mark Toth and Jonathan Sweet. Let’s meet the boys:
Mark Toth is a retired economist, historian and entrepreneur who has worked in banking, insurance, publishing and global commerce. He is a former board member of the World Trade Center, St. Louis, and has lived in U.S. diplomatic and military communities around the world, including London, Tel Aviv, Augsburg and Nagoya.https://www.newsbreak.com/news/2752375324738/hey-russia-it-s-putin-stupid?noAds=1&_f=app_share&s=i3
Jonathan Sweet, a retired Army colonel, served 30 years as a military intelligence officer. His background includes tours of duty with the 101st Airborne Division and the Intelligence and Security Command. He led the U.S. European Command Intelligence Engagement Division from 2012-14, working with NATO partners in the Black Sea and Baltics.https://www.newsbreak.com/news/2752375324738/hey-russia-it-s-putin-stupid?noAds=1&_f=app_share&s=i3
I do not know if their article is the result of ignorance, willful blindness or if they were paid to push propaganda. Regardless of the motive, Toth and Sweet join the Petraeus club and push the objective lie that the tenacious Ukrainians are defeating the Russian army:
it is Ukrainian soldiers, equipped and trained by English-speaking countries, alongside their allies who have opened fresh cans of whoop-ass and are inflicting a beatdown of Putin’s military forces in the Donbas. . . .
There has been one constant since Putin’s illegal invasion began in February: Russia’s military forces have been forced to retreat and regroup, time and time again. . . .
Putin has been exposed as an “emperor with no clothes,” forced to rely upon haggling with Iranian and North Korean surrogates to purchase drones and, according to the New York Times, “millions of artillery shells and rockets.” Saturating social media with disinformation and excuses about why Russian ground forces are failing cannot mask the images of abandoned equipment and reports of Russian soldiers surrendering.https://www.newsbreak.com/news/2752375324738/hey-russia-it-s-putin-stupid?noAds=1&_f=app_share&s=i3
Do you remember that incredible defeat of the Russian army in Mariupol when the Ukrainians surrounded the Russian troops and forced the surrender of 2500 combatants? Neither do I. That is what Russia did to the Ukrainian AZOV battalion.
How about the Russians fleeing in terror ahead of the Ukrainian blitzkrieg around Kherson? Nope. Another dry hole. The Russians pushed that attack back and inflicted catastrophic casualties on the Ukrainians.
What about the Luhansk People’s Republic? Ukraine held on to that and crushed the Russian backed militia. Right? Wrong!! Luhansk was secured and the same process is underway now in the Donetsk People’s Republic.
Why do western political, military and media leaders embrace demonstrable lies? I think it reflects a deeper sickness that afflicts the west. This self-delusion is not an isolated phenomena. Biden, his military commanders and the mainstream media also insist that men can be women and become pregnant, that inflation is zero, that Biden is popular, and that pedophiles are not bad people. Oh yeah, one more–the southern border of the United States is secure.
The time is coming when reality will intrude and destroy the fantasies. It happened to Baghdad Bob, who insisted there were no U.S. tanks in Baghdad in March 2003, and will happen to General Dave, Mark Toth and Jonathan Sweet. Seven months into the Russian “Special Military Operation,” Putin and his Generals have committed only a small fraction of their military forces to the conflict. They seem content to destroy Ukrainian units and equipment with artillery, missiles and mortars and force NATO to keep supplying Ukraine so that it can send its troops, armed with new equipment, to the front to be destroyed.
Yet NATO’s European members do not have the industrial capacity to replace the donated military equipment and are facing a bleak winter with scant energy resources needed to power manufacturing plants. The United States also is depleting its stockpile of weapons. Raheem Kassam has provided a very useful summary of what the United States has sent to Ukraine (read here). For example, the United States has provided Ukraine in six months more Javelins than it can produce in one year. So far the number stands at more than 8500, which is more than one-third of the U.S. total arsenal.
And how many Russian tanks have the Ukrainians destroyed with these Javelins? We do not know. The U.S. intelligence community does not know. U.S. intelligence is relying on Ukraine to report the good news and the Ukrainians simply say, “lots.” In theory, U.S. intelligence analysts have the ability to use satellite imagery to count disabled and destroyed tanks. But I am told that has not happened.
What we do have is a lot of social media video showing the Russians capturing hundreds, if not thousands, of javelin ATGMs. And we have videos of Russian tanks being hit with a javelin but continuing to operate. The javelin is not turning out to be the wonder weapon it was promised to be.
Let me reiterate one very important point–the so-called intelligence on Russian casualties in terms of personnel and equipment, is being provided solely by the Ukrainians. The United States has not taken any steps to independently verify the Ukrainian “intelligence.” That is a recipe for disappointment once the truth comes out that Ukraine is guilty of exaggerating.