Now we are getting some insight into Russia’s activities over the last three weeks. It now appears that the withdrawal/retreat from Kharkov was part of a broader plan that is going to culminate in the referenda by the oblasts of Luhansk, Donetsk, Zaporizhzhia and Kherson starting this Friday. This is not some last minute, desperate stunt. It flows logically from Russia’s attempt to use the Special Military Operation as leverage to compel serious negotiations on the futures and independence of Donetsk and Luhansk.
There is some great commentary on this. I suggest you watch at least one of the following from the boys at Duran or Andrei Martyanov:
The referenda are part of a dance with Russian law. Russia’s Duma has met and passed legislation that will govern how new territories, along with their citizens, are admitted into the Russian Republic. I must emphasize that the decision to hold the referenda this week was made some weeks ago. Ukraine’s continued shelling of civilians in the Donbas made this move an imperative.
Once the votes are completed and the results announced, the next move will be Russia’s–i.e., welcoming the former Ukrainian oblasts into the Russian Republic. Once they are admitted, any further attack by Ukraine on those territories will be an act of war against Russia. Putin has made it very clear that he will act against any nation waging war against Russia and its citizens. This move is putting the United States and NATO on notice. If they continue to enable Ukrainian attacks on Russian citizens then they will be targeted in response.
We are crossing a threshold that could escalate into World War III. I am certain that Vladimir Putin is not playing games. He is not Joe Biden. He does not speak foolishly off-the cuff nor does he make idle threats. From the Russian perspective, Russia’s very existence is at stake.
This should sober the west up, but that is unlikely. France’s Macron was first out of the gate today issuing empty threats against Russia. Biden’s White House was close behind. Howls of outrage. But Russia no longer cares. It has watched the west play the mute during the last 8 years while the democratically elected President of Ukraine was forced from office (with the active backing of UK and US officials) and while Ukraine subsequently killed thousands of men, women and children in the Donbas. The west was quite clear–it did not care.
Washington and NATO have shot their wad and have no credible conventional military force to counter Russia accepting the results of the referenda. Their only alternative beyond throwing a tantrum is to threaten the use of nuclear weapons.
Despite the potential peril of this moment, I am amused by the irony of the United States, the United Kingdom and France feigning moral outrage over the Russian’s willingness to accept the results of the votes by citizens of Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhzhia and Kherson. Did the United States hold a referendum when it took Hawaii or Mexican territory? Did the United Kingdom allow the American colonies a referendum when they wanted their independence? Hell, go down the list of British colonies that were taken by force without the natives of those countries being given a chance to vote to “join” the UK. Ditto for France. I don’t recall them holding an election when they took over Vietnam. It was only when the North Vietnamese held a “vote” at Dien Bien Phu that France “decided” to accept the will of the people.
Unlike the United States and the former global colonial powers, Russia is letting the people in the besieged Ukrainian oblasts decide. We are living through consequential history. This is a true game changer.
One final point. If China backs Russia on this move it is likely that Russia has provide China with guarantees that Moscow will support Beijing when it moves against Taiwan. We shall see.
Is it true Putin sent a “skip the dishes” to the White House?
Large portion…sweet n sour pulled pork.
Medium portion…chicken tikka masala.
A side of grits?
Tonight’s announcement by Putin and Shoigu will have many hanging on with bated breath. Macron attempts at having a phone call with Mr. Putin has been declined.
I am willing to bet Russia is not going to declare war just yet but will take out all US/NATO assets assisting in C6ISR. Deniability works both ways, leaving US/NATO the option of escalating or folding. The SCO must have been a resounding success. And who would have guessed the weapon having the biggest impact in the course of the current SMO would be the Iranian drones.
I’m a 8th generation American, Army vet and my father was a 30 year Navy Vet. I grew up living under the table so to speak. In the 80’s I worked in the Crimea and Ukraine for a year on an international project. Given the time there I worked with the Ukrainians and Ethnic Russians.
My interpreter was a first year college student in Simferopol an Ethnic Russian. She followed me around for a year. We have kept in touch over the years so I have good understanding what the Ethnic Russians are going through.
America and West is just so wrong on this. I pray for the best outcome.
Larry Johnson says
You have served your country honorably. I wish America would return the favor. Thank you for weighing in.
Lauren Michele says
You left out the most important example. Serbia. 1999. NATO bombing them into ‘democracy’.
Creating Kosovo out of thin air.
Russia is just following this example in their own fashion, which actually IS Democratic. Just like Crimea, of course.
The hubris and hypocrisy is mind bending for all us who have not subsumed our intellects into collective ‘double-think’.
Brad Patton says
The constant barrage of outrageous lies by our side has opened my eyes. As expected tonight The Izium sequel Bucha special feature 2 was brought up. It infuriates me that these people and our media push these lies with out any proof or investigation. They present them as given facts. Where are the autopsies from bucha1? eye witnesses? Ukraine doesn’t want this as there are eye witnesses that they set up the stage including a French aide worker and many more. Most of all it makes no sense for the Russians to carefully lay out damning scenes. Our CIA did the same thing in Angola seeding local papers with stories of mass rape and murder by Cubans. A CIA official you can see him on Redacted’s black and white prequel every night said they were all made up they had no evidence the cubans had committed a single crime. Same thing here.
I hope Russia wins and Zelenski and his evil backers end up in prisons.
No surprise. Any cabal masquerading as a legitimate government that stole the election they used to gain power are, like Satan, liars and the “fathers of lies”. Three-quarters of the World’s nations have figured this out. I just wish more of my fellow Americans would!
just saying says
They did the same thing in Syria, Yugoslavia, and many other places. No one cared.
There are a few parallels that can be drawn between this war and the US invasion of Iraq in 2003 including the assertion that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction which threatened the west although no-one bothered to ask the pollititions how they thought Saddam Hussein would deliver them..Camel perhaps? or donkey cart? Nato’s conduct in this war however does demonstrate the west’s existential threat to Russia.
There is however one big difference between these two conflicts that makes this one the bigger tragedy (in the eyes of the west). The Iraqi people did not have blonde hair and blue eyes.
just saying says
South Slavs (yug means south in slavic languages) also have blonde hair and blue eyes, but West did not care. Anglo-Saxons have always considered Slavs as members of some lower race. What really makes this one the bigger tragedy (in the eyes of the west) is the fact that they are affected, and in actual danger. They don’t care about Slavs suffering, but they do about their own asses freezing in winter (or nuclear winter).
I think you’ve got it wrong about anglo saxons. First of all, the USA ceased being an anglo saxon country ( as in majority of the Euro population in the USA) in the 2nd half of the 19th C. Woodrow Wilson’s 1914 speech “‘You must not speak of us as cousins” confirmed this. The UK is well on the way to no longer being an anglo saxon country. Im not sure where the anatagonism towards Russia comes from. I think some of this is a hangover from the cold war with the Soviet Union. However, there are many socialists and secret reformed communists in all of the major political parties in the UK ( The conservatives are not conserving anything of value in Britian). The majority of of people in the US and UK government cabinets (senior positions) are not anglo saxons.
Unfortunately the MSM media in the UK is extremely biased against Russia. As in most countries, people who stare at the TV and rely on they MSM for their current affairs information are very badly informed. Purposefully mislead ! The Ukranian army’s conduct against civilians in the Donbas and Russian POWs has made me wonder about Ukranians but I suppose this can be considered close to a civil war and civil wars are the worst kinds of conflict.
justs saying says
Antagonism towards Russia predates Soviet Union (clear example would be Crimean War). British Empire hated Russian Empire, because it was unable to conquer, or at least contain it. USA Empire is a direct successor to British Empire, and it wants to rule the whole world (because that is what empires do). Russia and China are preventing that, and have to be destroyed.
I used term Anglo-Saxons in order to include Germans/Austrians and their killing spree against Slavs
in both World Wars. Maybe I should have said Collective West, or whatever is PC term for US Empire and its vassals.
desillutioned norwegian says
as far as i can gather, it is the crown, the unspeakable dynasty inside rhe square mile. have not read the superclass, but theres your villains. they will never give up.
there was more medals given out in himalaya that entire africa.
read up in tragedy and hope. the power behind, want the continent. all that mckinder therories is but a pause.
No doubt that the referendum will be a major change. I cannot help but think the timing is perfect though. Too perfect to be a coincidence.
As people have rightly said, fighting vehicles can handle the snow and mud. However a little bit of research indicates the problem is with logistics.
Getting ammunition and fuel to the front lines becomes an issue as snow and mud tend to bog down transport vehicles.
Another factor brought up is that stoves and other heating devices stand out like beacons on thermal imaging devices. Combined with a lack of foliage this would make troops sitting ducks.
Considering the above it would be hard for Ukraine to make advances on the newly liberated Russian territory.
Although as someone once said, I’m not a military man.
“Although as someone once said, I’m not a military man”.
As someone else once said, “You don’t need to be a weather man to know which way the wind blows”.
James Owen says
“I cannot help but think the timing is perfect though. Too perfect to be a coincidence.”
It’s not. It’s a plan that’s been in the works for a long time, before now.
The Russians play Chess, not poker.
“General Winter” will certainly be in action in the Ukraine, but the Russian Army treats the Cold Weather as an Operational Asset. This Time, by cutting off the Gas to Europistan, the Russians are going to send General Winter on an Invasion Tour.
Consider the Timing of this as well. The referenda in these Ukrainian Oblasts (Counties, in the US) will quickly be followed by the Congress in Russia approving their Integration as Russian Oblasts, and then (if not a part of Friday’s Voting) Elections for Representatives to the State Duma (House of Representatives) will complete the Process. It will be called an “Illegal Annexation” as is still done wrt the Crimean Vote a few Years ago.
The call-up of reserve troops by the Red Army also has a Time factor to consider – a number that has been used is 300,000 – but I suspect that this will be done by selecting soldiers with the needed MOS to fit the plans of the General Staff. These guys have to Report to a Base, be organized into Units, issued Weapons, Gear, and Vehicles. That might take a couple of Months, and then they have to be transported to the Ukraine. Just in Time for General Winter to go into Action.
In the mean Time, as soon as the Russian Congress approves the Integration of these Oblasts to Russia proper, what Tsar Vlad the Terrible said yesterday begins – Attack Russia, get the Nukes – meaning the Active-Duty Army and Air Force will respond to any further Natostan Aggression.
David Collins says
Lol! Good one, Larry; it was only when they held a “referendum” at Dien Bien Phu, that the French decided to accept the will of the people. lol
Larry Johnson says
It was a test to see who remembers.
I know abut it because I read history, Dien Bien Phu occurred in the year I was born! The first I read of it, that I recall, was in Felix Greene’s “Vietnam, Vietnam”. Being written in 1966, it made a lasting impression.
I remember that book well. I was a sophomore in a red-county Ohio high school in 1968, and our English Prep teacher had it on his desk. I asked to read it, and when I did, I instantly transformed into a lifelong anti-imperialist.
All the students liked that teacher. No discipline to speak of. It was 1968, after all. Unfortunately, he barely lasted a year before he was sent packing. I think he ended up in South America.
Johnny Got His Gun by Dalton Trumbo written in 1939 should be read by leadership in both the USA and Russia/China. They were Soldiers by Ann Jones is brutal. Classic read is Life and Fate by Vasily Grossman. Ya gotta have militaries but at least the young kids should know what they are getting into. Leaders don’t seem to care anymore.
I taught a college level course titled national security in the 21ST century for 10 years at a private high school. Had SOF, CIA, Flags, embassies from Israel, China, Russia, SOCOM, PAcom. It was a no pitch gig by the speakers. Anyway, when the kids were ready I’d show them what war can do:
There were kids in my class who went to academies, rotc, etc. Just saying.
Larry Johnson says
Thanks for what you did and are doing.
Let’s also remember the Algerian war of liberation where the French committed terrible atrocities.
In the former colonies they have long memories. The West is gonna feel it.
I have a coy of “The Battle of Algiers”, an excellent film, if you haven’t seen it. Some of the participants in “The Battle” were involved in the making of the film…it’s also interesting the actor who portrayed the French General as such an ogre, in real life is a leftist and seems a nice guy. The French (and French Canadians) still have their military people, who are thirsting for blood and fighting in Ukraine. It’s unofficial, yet they are NATO.
Who knows whether they believe their own propaganda or just want to fight? The Russians are convenient. It’s hard to defeat someone protecting their home and family, and if you do, what kind of human does that make you?
Mr. ED says
I like history. How true. Facts on the gourd are about to come back.
There is a book called, “Hell in a Very Small Place” written by a French journalist, Bernard Fall. It is all about the battle of Dien Bien Phu. Bye bye France, take your empire with you-LOSERS. Then, the brilliant Americans said, “hold my beer…” How’d that work out? The book is highly recommended.
With Russia’s modern nuclear delivery system , if they want to first-strike CONUS they have the choice of using their hypersonics missiles and poseidon nuke torpedoes for surprise attacks.. the whole traditional detecttion and defense against ICBM will be moot.
James Owen says
The Posidon torpedoes are for but one purpose: To destroy an aircraft carrier. Not sink. Destroy.
they can also destroy coastal areas with nuclear tsunamis,.-
Henry Rech says
Not bad for a school girl.
I live about 50 miles south of Bangor WA home of the Nuclear fleet. should I start the duck and cover drill?
Cris from Caracas says
That was the one of the first books I saw in my father’s library when I was a child…the battle of Dien Bien Phu….I still have that book….one of his hobbies, which he took seriously, was history.
I had a cousin that was the head of a movie studio, and he brought documentaries in 16mm every week. I must have watched pretty much every war documentary in existence by the time I was 10.
So playing armchair general is mentally rewarding, since it brings back a happy childhood and father’s relationship……talk about Jing and Jang.
It’s a great “fix” now to read your columns with my first cup of coffee when first up….brings back happy memories….so it goes without saying: Keep up the good work, so I and a lot of other people don’t get cold turkey.
Or the favorite neocon pet Israel. Israel doesn’t ask for permission, they just do. A little Israeli doctrine is what’s needed
Wonder if we will see the expeditious recognition of the refenda results by Russia’s most powerful strategic nations/friends, closely followed on by many other friendlies among EurAsian, ME, and global south players.
As a member of both the height of the Cold War and late Vietnam cohorts, it occurs to me how little appetite in the prime age recruitable Millineals and youngersters of the west would have for war given that all their lives wars were “sanitary” actions in distant strange lands with virtually no discernable impact on their lives. Climate change, abortion, gun control, and wokism are the dominant narrative threat stories that form their collective memory…and no one of the crew proposes to die for either.
Russia: LOL! Check. Your move.
OBiden regime: C’mon man, we don’t even do checkers….forget 3D chess.
Irrationality as the New Normal?
In response to a short video on a topic of mutual interest having nothing to do with the Ukraine, an older, intelligent and successful business owner responded in part with this:
I think that Ukraine is taking captured weapons and shoring up the Kharkov Oblast and soon they will plunge through to Mariupol cutting off whatever meager supplies Kherson is getting, and also putting bothKherson’s land-rail connection in HIMARS range as well as an eastern port or two in Crimea.
Two pockets allowing attacking the Donbass, and Kherson-Crimea. With Kherson falling soon, 4,000 artillery shells fired per day simply can’t be supported by ferry traffic, not to mention all the other supplies of food, water, etc.
For my part, I construe this to be a reflexive reaction within the mental construct of a secular religious dogma. But unfortunately, the recent NATO kumbahyah pow-wow in Tallinn, Estonia (Thanks to SONAR21 for the video upon which I base my biased judgment), yielded some public pronouncements that seem to indicate the entirety of NATO has been and continues to be living in a Lah-Lah-Land.
I like big butts and I cannot deny
Gonzalo Lire had a VERY interesting Roundtable #21 with Ray McGovern, John Kiriakou and Suzie Dawson of Wikileaks. John Brennan dances in and out, throughout. An hour or so in, it’s revealed the intense hatred MI6 and the USA deep state both still hold for Russia, is on account of Snowden, being given shelter by Russia! Assange got in deep, about Vault 7, given to him by Snowden. Ray has some great stories about Brennan’s rise to power in The Agency.
Putin had just given Obama an off ramp to war over chemical weapons in Syria and wrote an Op-Ed “A Plea for Caution From Russia” published in the NYT, dated September 11, 2013. Ray’s words, describe the time as the apogee of USA/Russia relations, with Putin relishing the growing trust between not just the countries, but the presidents.
Six months later was the Maidan and Brennan went to Kiev to promise training and weapons so the CIA could help take back Donbas and proceed with the planned destruction of Russia.
The whole Roundtable is brilliant and well worth a listen! 1:55:36
It goes way beyond that. Don’t forget that the ruling families of Europe – inbred freaks – are all related to each other. Perhaps the Windsors never got over the Bolsheviks deleting their cousins.
Jams O'Donnell says
Unlikely. George the whatever, on the throne at the time, refused to allow his cousin the Tsar and his family refuge in England. So he actually helped in the ‘deletion’ of his cousins.
George was a constitutional monarchy. He had no power to override government.
The King Charles before him who tried that had his head cut off.
The British gov use the royals as useful idiots and a show for the world. They have no real power they can exercise without being chop chop sueyed.
Bob Jackson says
They do chip at the edges, though, and set a humane standard.
For her committal, she chose a Russian (and Catholic) hymn, and it fitted in so perfectly that even The Sun explained it without protest (https://www.thesun.co.uk/tvandshowbiz/14672803/russian-kontakian-of-the-departed/). A small victory over cancel culture.
In 1961, she insisted on visiting Ghana, and dancing in the arms of Nkrumah, against Churchill’s vehement objections – “her visit would seem to endorse a regime which has imprisoned hundreds of Opposition members without trial and which is thoroughly authoritarian in tendency”, which overlooked what his authoritarian chums were doing in Kenya: imprisoning and torturing the opposition in their hundreds of thousands (and more) without trial.
Her speech at the time still rings true: “One of the great features of any family association is that it is not based upon some rigid creed or set of rules. It derives its strength from the respect and affection which the members have for each other. This allows a wide degree of disagreement and intelligent discussion. I think it is of the greatest importance that we should remember this within the Commonwealth family”.
We’re very good at painting ourselves into corners. She was superb at helping us extricate ourselves.
There was considerable discontent amonsgt the UK public at the end of WW1 and afterwards. The authorities were contending with the same revolutionary sentiments as observered across Europe. in 1919, Churchill sent two cruisers to Liverpool to threaten and intimidate striking workers in the City !!!
The refusal/failure to host the Romanovs in the UK was a shameful episode in Britain’s 20thC history. I suspect the decision was related to eoffrts to re-inforce the position of the Saxe-Coburg-Gotha monarchy in Britain post WW1.
A kid in the crowd. says
Let’s presume that this man means what he says and says what he means. I also hope his words are heard.
Abbreviated version of the statement delivered in February 2022 from V. Putin, President of Russia.
“I made a decision to carry out a special military operation.
The purpose of this operation is to protect people who, for eight years now, have been facing humiliation and genocide perpetrated by the Kiev regime. To this end, we will seek to demilitarise and denazify Ukraine, as well as bring to trial those who perpetrated numerous bloody crimes against civilians, including against citizens of the Russian Federation.
It is not our plan to occupy the Ukrainian territory.
I would also like to address the military personnel of the Ukrainian Armed Forces.
Your fathers, grandfathers and great-grandfathers did not fight the Nazi occupiers and did not defend our common Motherland to allow today’s neo-Nazis to seize power in Ukraine. You swore the oath of allegiance to the Ukrainian people and not to the junta, the people’s adversary which is plundering Ukraine and humiliating the Ukrainian people.
I urge you to refuse to carry out their criminal orders.
I want to emphasise again that all responsibility for the possible bloodshed will lie fully and wholly with the ruling Ukrainian regime.
I would now like to say something very important for those who may be tempted to interfere in these developments from the outside. No matter who tries to stand in our way or all the more so create threats for our country and our people, they must know that Russia will respond immediately, and the consequences will be such as you have never seen in your entire history. No matter how the events unfold, we are ready. All the necessary decisions in this regard have been taken. I hope that my words will be heard.”
All the necessary decisions in this regard have been taken.
Thanks for reposting – worth re-reading. Significant
Odd. No teleprompter.
Carlton Meyer says
For those unfamiliar with the American seizure of Hawaii, here is a short video:
To maintain control over the island of MAYOTTE, which was part of its former colony of Comoros, France had organized a referendum there. Mayotte remains under French administration in violation of a vote confirmed by the UN General Assembly, whose resolution strongly reaffirms “the need to respect the unity and territorial integrity of the Comoros archipelago, made up of islands of Anjouan, Grande Comore, Mayotte and Moheli »
I think it’ll a certainty if either Poland or Romania persist with transferring Western weapons through their territories after the Referendum they’ll be the first to receive a calling card from Mr Kinzhal which by then will give the West a very serious wake up call.
Jams O'Donnell says
No need, unless they do something even more stupid. All such supplies can be liquidated just as soon as they cross the 404 border. The Russian air force will now be enabled to take this sort of direct action on the border.
Michael Murry says
As a retired expatriate ex-patriot, I have lived happily in Taiwan for almost 18 years now — in addition to the year-and-a-half I spent as a foreign exchange student after returning from Vietnam and getting out of Uncle Sam’s Canoe Club (a.k.a., the U.S. Navy) in 1972 — and the last thing the hard-working, peaceful, civilized people of this beautiful island need is for the U.S., China, Russia, or any other nation to try and tell them what they can do or how they can live. They know better than anyone else how to go about their own business.
Phrased somewhat differently:
China has done doodley squat to assist Russia in it’s existential war against the Nazi American Terrorist Operation (a.k.a., The Combined Waste) and Russian President Vladimir Putin should have a care to remember the cardinal principal of Chinese foreign policy: Use Barbarians to Control Barbarians. My Taiwanese wife says that until Xi Jin-ping and the Chinese government openly proclaim that they support Russia in its “acceptance” of some formerly Ukrainian territories, she wouldn’t buy any of these so-called, rumored, “agreements” of “support” from China.
Larry Johnson says
I hope you are safe and continue to live in peace.
Those who reject “patriotism” have not understood the role of the “nation-state”. The same is a long historical process in which the present form has emerged. The state is civilization, and it is the only way to organize civilization.
The rejection of “patriotism”, methodically mediated by equating it with “nationalism”, is a project of the ultra-liberals (also called globalists), consequence of the ideological hostility to the state of liberalism.
Only those who believe that one can cultivate the economy with tax laws alone, also believe that penal laws alone can civilize man …
“China has done doodley squat”
highly curious where the data that support this statement ? it is china in 2014 that supported russia when the whole europe sanction russia by their agreement to buy russian gas and building new pipeline.
In fact the whole US strategy failed because they cannot pressure china to abandon russia and seeing the US impotent against china the rest of the world follow suit and refused to bow to US demands.
you should know by this stage there is public info and there is closed-doors info which everyone do not have access to. I dont trust your anecdotal ‘taiwanese wife’ story as proof that china didnt do anything ..
James K says
“Doodley-squat” — you do realize that in “Western-speak”, any “inaction” with respect to levying sanctions against Russia is considered significant “support”, right?
If China isn’t interested in sanctions and merely wishes to just continue conducting “business as usual” and nothing more, it will still be known as a “big supporter and ally of Russia” here in the West…..
It concerns me The Atlantic Council, and all it represents, is writing position papers on what to do when ‘Russia’ uses nuclear weapons in Ukraine. A failing empire, drunk on delusions of a unipolar ‘American Century’ it’s squandered in just a couple decades, might do crazy things to try to keep that going.
John Q. Publick says
Isn’t Crimea already a part of the Russian Federation? Haven’t the Ukrainians been attacking the Crimea repeatedly for months? Why haven’t the Russians already declared war for those attacks? If they don’t do something about destroying the Ukrainians in the Donetsk region attacking Donetsk city every day then what’s the use? I don’t think the Russians are conducting 5D chess, they seem to not be capable of defeating the Ukrainians outright – without mobilization.
Larry Johnson says
I think Russia wanted to ensure it had the support of China and India. They used their restraint as a point to rally support. Now, game on.
There is truth in what you say.
10 to 1 says
“they seem to not be capable of defeating the Ukrainians outright”
Ukraine doesn’t have the means to continue the conflict without aid and support from the west. The question becomes, how can Russia undermine those powers behind Ukraine?
The British economist John Maynard Keynes famously quoted the Bolshevik leader Lenin saying, that “the best way to destroy the capitalist system is to debauch the currency.” Ironic that it was Britain who lost her empire after WW2, because its economy was destroyed by the war.
Do you know the story of King Croesus and the oracle?
If Croesus goes to war, he will destroy a great empire.
The US and UK picked a fight with Russia using Ukraine to do it. The outcome may not be what they planned.
another steve says
Is autonomy an option ?
Wasn’t autonomy for these regions a main point of the Russian invasion?
Who is going to monitor the referendum, to occur is a few days?
I guess the reason a lot of those peoples weren’t offered a referendum was the same reason they weren’t offered a refrigerator.
No, autonomy is not an option.
And no, autonomy was not a main point for the invasion. Autonomy for Donbass was a (if not the) main point of the Minsk Accords. Those Accords (and autonomy as part of Ukraine) went off the table when Ukraine refused to implement them and Russia acknowledged LNR and DNR as independent states.
As for monitoring: when Crimea held its independence referendum, Crimea asked for international monitors. The Combined West refused to send any, then claimed it was not valid because they didn’t. They knew what the outcome of that referendum would be – and they are only in favor of referenda if they know the outcome will favor them.
Crimea’s Referendum was taking place under much better circumstances. There was no war going on, and its population had not been displaced by war. It showed the will of the people living there.
As it is, the outcome of the upcoming referenda is not in question: ardent Ukrainian supporters left the territories “temporarily occupied by Russia”.
Russia already recognized their autonomy earlier in the year. This is option to go from autonomy to part of Russia proper.
Jimmy Walter says
It is particularly ironic that NATO has come out against the referendums, labeling them sham, https://www.rt.com/news/563194-nato-us-donbass-referendum
while readying military action against the Serbs in Kosovo which had no referendum at all
With these referenda and the subsequent joining of the Russian Federation, Russia could theoretically enlist the help of the CSTO, and SCO Right?
Larry Johnson says
Jimmy Walter says
Dear Mr Johnson, you left out Kosovo where NATO us preparing to put down the Serbs
https://www.rt.com/news/563188-nato-plan-serbia-kosovo/ who never had a referendum
Larry Johnson says
Fair point. Thanks.
James K says
And would you also extend that over to the recent clashes in Nagorno-Karabakh too? Apparently Azerbaijani forces are advancing in that region against the Armenians (Russia’s allies)…….
LJ , at this stage we already knew what will happen as the fools who led US and EU will double down and russia will respond accordingly. Maybe only an uprising in US by patriots the only way to stop this wile-o-coyote govt of USA from destroying the world ?
The western infrastructure is rather fragile and easily disrupted , with their economies on ‘digital’ scape and storage on ‘centralized servers aka clouds’ and communication dependent on undersea cables and satellites , everything can be degraded or even destroyed by massive disruption.
what will happen to US military if they lost spy satelites , comm satellites and navigation satellites ?
Blind, deaf and dumb.
Dear Larry Johnson, do you have any estimate of what the population loss have been in the Ukraine as a whole, and in the Donbass and Luhansk in particular…? At this point this must be staggering numbers I believe, do you know of any sources that might have an estimate of this?
K. Talaat says
In the past, I used to think that our leaders are so stupid to continue destroying our country with their misguided policies. Not anymore! Bravely, looking at the geopolitical picture, America never gained its independence from the City of London.
Who owns and owes nothing? A slave.
Eff the WEF.
We did, for a time. For whatever reason we let the Brits astroturf us into fighting WWI for them. As a result of that you get tools of the Deep State put in place like the Espionage act and Herbert Hoover.
Federal Reserve Act passed in 1913 along with income tax. WWI starts 1914. Woodrow Wilson runs on “America First” non-entry into WWI in 1916. Does a 180 in 1917: US enters war. Then WW uses the new Espionage Act to go after dissenters. Schenck “crowded theater” unanimous decision allows punishing anti-war political speech for decades.
I don’t think all those things in close temporal proximity is a coincidence. Wilson later regretted putting control of the US in the hands of a small group of oligarchs. It’s an incredible quote not many people know about.
Do you have a source for this? I’m predisposed to despise Wilson for obvious reasons.
K. Talaat says
Thank you Randolorian for your comment. The geopolitical situation is one of vandalism not of incompetence.
will take you to a video of Tom Luongo discussing the geopolitical situation. In summary, European banks are broke and capital is fleeing out of Europe to the US. The Davos “crowd” wish to bring it back to Europe by making the US unstable. US commercial banks are resisting. Check it out.
These are not leaders. They are mafia.
Bert Huber says
I have read that in the region which the ukrainians have reconquered the last days, they are pursuing “collaborators”.
Collaborators is interpreted very widely.
for example these can be teachers who have just continued to do their work the last months, or persons who have received food the russians.
They all risk many years of imprisonment.
Does anybody have informations about these points and if they are true?
just saying says
Those things have been happening for eight years. What makes you think that they won’t happen now? Of course it’s happening, and of course that they are making videos of it (I have seen some).
The United States, the United Kingdom and France would never recognize the results of such referendum , they failed several time to recognize the results of their own elections … Brandon is a fraud , all English establishment was trying not to Brexit for how many years ? Don’t even speak to a french about the 2005 referendum : it was the day democracy died in France. Furthermore , none of them recognize the Crimean referendum results in 2014, why would they this time ?
Russia could have all the goodwill in the world , the guys are assholes , now the question is : are the so called assholes deep enough in the shit to try waging a war in Ukraine themself ?
James Owen says
“The United States, the United Kingdom and France would never recognize the results of such referendum-”
They never follow the rules that they insist that others must follow, or else.
They seriously believe that the rest of the world is populated by misbahaving children, and that it’s their job to be the parents and spank them.
Let’s hope cooler heads prevail and the West wises up.
Hard to see any cool heads in the councils of power in DC.If there, they are keeping their mouths shut. Strange to think at least some of the US military leadership may possess the coolest heads. If true (one has to hope it is), this could be due to clearer understanding gained from 1) the disastrous results of all the recent mis-adventures; and 2) being the ones who’d have to actually organize the fight short-handed, armed with all the super expensive junk they, themselves, bought and sold via the MIC revolving door. And if US oligarchs move to re-institute the draft, just watch what happens next on the domestic front.
Eric Newhill says
Assuming the referendum goes as planned, there is nothing to be happy about. The West will not accept Russia’s annexation of the oblasts. No way/no how. I don’t like how western media/propaganda is spinning stories like those about Russia needing to conscript soldiers from prisons and is arming them w/ rusty WW2 rifles. There are other signs in the entrails that are public discourse in the West. It’s all meant to convince the sheep that a war against Russia is easily winnable. UKR/NATO will attack what will now be Russia. Things are going to get as ugly as they were in the early 1940s. We’re all going down the tubes if some real statesmen don’t find an off ramp. Are there such people? Guess we’ll see soon enough if one emerges.
That’s what I’ve been saying all along. The MSM and powers that be painting of Russians as bumbling and inept with low morale and out dated equipment is to rally western citizenry to war with Russia. This is a war West can’t lose once it decided to throw it’s military, diplomatic and economic weight into it. US/NATO defeat will end 450 years of western world domination as other nations will feel much freer to snub western influences and join the BRICS SCO and other non-western orgs the west has used to maintain control in a post colonial world as they will be totally delegitimized.
Putin made grave error from 2014 coup on not coming in hard and fast allowing NATO/US support to grow and grow smelling weakness. Even now with “partial mobilization” it’s not enough to stop increasing support and will probably lead to WW3 as all sides has too many “sunk costs”.
West is suicidal anyway. No children having. Euthanasia is legal. Immigrant importing. No protests about this conflict which imperils us all. etc So thats another reason I think all road leads to Armageddon.
Eric Newhill says
Adding an observation for posterity sake – the Russia haters/WW3 lovers have developed the talking point – now ubiquitous – stating that the referendum will be fake and therefore should be ignored. For Christ’s sake, these people have been at civil war with Kiev since 2014. How much more proof of a desire to break free could there be? Isn’t picking up a weapon and fighting Kiev the ultimate referendum?
There are no such leaders in the west.
The west really believes that Russia won’t escalate on them and the way Russia has behaved they have good cause to.
Russia seems afraid to strike NATO. And West has seen that.
Will they now do so? Not sure. Putin is cautious and not aggressive. The Blinkens and Trusses on the other hand are fully hung ho nuts.
So you have a cautious but determined player against a reckless, confident and shrewd one
I think Russia is in a very tough position. America is benefitting immensely.
Biden lied in his speech, the US is threatening sanctions to countries trading with Russia and forcing many to stop.
Can’t see a good ending here.
In all Europe and the US, both sides of isle, the people in charge are deranged stupid idiots. Not a single moral, honest or wise leader amongst them. Grits without gravy.
Napoleon wanted lucky generals. He believed some people were just lucky, fated to be charmed and win battles. Others were not.
Biden is lucky in himself. But as a leader he has been unlucky for America and the world, everything he touched had turned from gold to Hunters soiled pubic hair.
Is Putin lucky? I’m not sure. He’s at least improved his country in his tenure and avoided the worst consequences of sanctions. But he doesn’t seem to understand the West will only respect actual overwhelming force against them directly.
Are Truss and Macron lucky? Let’s see.
“An eye for an eye and soon the whole world will be blind.”
I really do wonder what is going through the heads of the US cabinet. Are they all really this stupid.
In the 300k announcement by Putin- is it just me or I still don’t hear a declaration of war by RUS?
My guess is that if RUS does that, it gives a chance for NATO wage war against RUS. As long as war is not officially declared, there is still room for negotiated settlement.
(imho, you can negotiate in a war-time status, but the stakes are higher)
I still hope that RUS keeps its heart- do not harden and become the demon you are slaying!
just saying says
You are right. Russia is preparing for war without declaring it, yet. Those 300K won’t be on the front lines in a while.
” it gives a chance for NATO wage war against RUS”
War is not restricted to things that go bang.
NATO has been waging war against firstly The Soviet Union, and subsequently the Russian Federation since 1949.
NATO has also been waging war against “Ukraine” since 1949.
NATO has also been waging war with NATO since 1949.
I must have missed the news. Which elements of the US army have been deployed to Ukraine and were defeated in combat? Which naval units did Turkey allow to pass through the Bosphorus Straits so the could take on the Russian Federation navy in the Baltic?
*coughs* proxy war. US keeps losing them.
David Collins says
What a show that would make! Our LGBTQIA+ troops fighting the Russian army!
Eric Newhill says
SF for sure and various social operators from the US and other countries
White Russian says
Fredrick … it would appear you had a Liz Truss moment!! And I quote :
….”did Turkey allow to pass through the Bosphorus Straits so the could take on the Russian Federation navy in the Baltic?”
Montreux Convention? What’s that? Rhetorical question as how many warships of any nation have they let through the straights since this started?
David Collins says
The Baltic Sea is up north – Finland on one side and the Baltic states on the other. The Black Sea and Sea of Azov are south of Ukraine. I’m an American, so, yeah, I had look all that up to understand White Russian’s comment.
James Owen says
In 1914, they had “brave little Belgium.” Now they have “brave little Ukraine.”
The usual suspects in Washington and London will claim that the referenda are illegitimate and illegal. All in keeping with the notion that legitimate elections can only happen in English speaking countries, or in countries that the Anglosphere is ostensibly friendily disposed to; Or expediently approves of, until they’re no longer of any use.
Their duplicity, perfidy, hypocrisy and double standards are being exposed on the World stage, for everybody to see.
It looks to me that Europe will not have Christmas this year. With the formal accession of Ukrainian oblasts into Russian Federation, the regular Russian army and civil administration will be deployed there. The West will go on a hunger strike in protest against this strictly no no thing. Ukraine and NATO will be forced into a strike against Russia. Russia would be forced into hitting the civilian infrastructure like electricity and railway. Poland, Romania and Finland will be frontline states forced to co-operate in logistics. Irregular forces from Russia may be deployed into sabotage operations against them targeting their energy infrastructure as well. Russia would be in their most advantageous position and NATO at its weakest as the winter sets in. That is when they will attack Kharkov and Odessa. Nothing to celebrate at Christmas time.
just saying says
This move happened right after Vlad and Xi met. Of course China backs it.
Meanwhile the western media today is full of fake stories saying that Putin has threatened the use of tactical nuclear weapons. Since the media has already convinced a good number of gullible westerners that Russia is losing the war, it will make sense to them that Russia, in desperation, would resort to nukes. When the media marches in lockstep like this, it means it has orders from the WH, which means that the West is setting up the public for some disastrous action it will take, an blame the other side for it.
It’s a tradition, from the Maine, Lusitania, Pearl Harbor, Gulf of Tonkin, 9/11, WMDs, incubator babies, Ghadaffi ‘genocide,’ Syrian ‘revolution,’ to now pretending the West didn’t kick this off in 2014. History has been written to cover up the deceptions, lures, and provocations used to start every major war for over a century.
I’m very concerned this is going to be the FF which changes things forever.
We’ve been fighting World War Three at least since NATO placed sanctions on Russia back in March:
Russia knows that the West wants it destroyed and China, Iran and India don’t want to share the same fate.
NATO played chicken with Russia and lost.
Now what? Partial mobilization in the US? On to Moscow?
just saying says
Mobilization in the US is more likely to go on to Washington.
Mike D. says
The left has been very vocal with disdain for Russia.
I wonder how many are oblivious to reality and believe USA can wish Russia away. Is this how wars begin(escalate)?
Is this what Bushes, Obamas want?
J Lee says
The smart money in Russia spoke loud and clear after Putin announced the partial mobilization the referenda in Ukraine. The Russian stock market collapsed by 9.4%. The people who bailed out have connections to high level government officials and high level business executives and therefore know that Putin’s actions will lead to serious harm to the Russian economy and loss of profitability to Russian businesses. Regardless of the impacts that Putin’s actions will have on Western economies, his decision to escalate the war in Ukraine will definitely make life worse for Russia’s citizens and businesses.
Imagine how Russians would do if Russia lost.
How does a week of a game changing look like. Astromundane diary since 2014 (original german ‘mundanes Tagebuch’ since 2007) accompanying our lifetime in weekly analyses.
On Monday the current week appeared in the tagebuch. https://mundanestagebuch.blogspot.com/2022/09/komplexe-resonanzen-und-auflosung-von.html
Today here my english translation. http://astromundanediary.blogspot.com/2022/09/dissolution-of-borders-and-strategist.html
Jupiter, Sun and Mercury
A coincident resonance-occurrence comprises: Jupiter, Sun and Mercury. The latter meets in the beginning of the week Jupiter, the strategist on the battlefield. and at the end of the week will Sun be in the the resonance of him.”
Glen V says
Putin must not have cleared his speech with Pope Francis. Pope Francis today spoke today to people in St. Peter’s Square, telling them that it was “madness” for a leader to warn about using nuclear weapons, which is what Putin hinted that he would do in regard to the war in Ukraine. The Pope is, of course, correct. There is no moral justification for the use of such weapons of mass destruction.https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/pope-says-ukraine-subjected-savageness-monstrosities-torture-2022-09-21/
Nick J says
Last week SCO met. This week the General Assembly of the UN. The former is the emerging international Forum that will decide what the UN was supposed to decide.
The world is two power blocks until a new international forum is created to mediate between all nations.
The only thing left for SCO is to break US$ hegemony, with that go the banks, the multinationals, the one percent. That will be the real war.
Sorry. But right now SCO is a paper tiger.
China has caved and not allowed certain direct trade or recognition of Russian MiR cards.
It is kind of a bullshit that this organization has any teeth or unity or will. It’s got infighting within it.
It’s also a bullshit that any serious rival to dollar coming any time soon. Of the BRICS, south Africa is tanking and corrupt as hell, Brazil is all over the place and bolsanaro is no one’s friend, India is sort of trying to help, China will act to the extent it serves it’s interests, it has zero genuine care or friendship with Russia.
The Yuan may become a bigger reserve currency option but right now that’s it. Rest is la la land. The hold the West has on financial systems is going nowhere in the next 10-25 years.
Were it not for the West being a threat to China, China would have lost no sleep over cutting Russia off.
The only real friend Russia has for historical reasons is India which also understands the West better than any other Asian country. Because the West thinks like colonial Britain.
So Russia is really on its own bar some mutual interest with China and some genuine friendship from India financially. But they are on their absolute own in fighting this war unless Iran joins the fray.
The west on the other hand is very united.
Band Itkoitko says
It seems you are right in principle. However, China (as well as India) also needs Russia so it cannot cut it off completely even if it didn’t have the West as a threat.
In any case, justice is bound to win in the end. So if Russia aligns herself as much as possible with true justice, she will be a winner, while the West is clearly not aligned with justice at all and is bound to lose no matter what happens.
TFIglobal has a video out saying that Greece is turning on the EU. A woman from Poland whose name I don’t recall says that there is draft legislation preparing for ‘natural disaster’ with state-ordered manufacturing, price controls, forced movement of population, and what amounts to forced labor. Poland is looking at Hungary’s relationship with the EU, and talking about annexing western Ukraine. I saw a report that Poland has opened its canal connections and riverways from the Baltic to Russian shipping, probably for the importation of coal.
General Winter’s advance guard is already probing Poland’s defenses. He will visit the rest of Europe soon. The UE, and then NATO, are about to be rendered nullities.
John in San Diego says
Excellent column, thanks for it, sir.
It’s not for nothing that Shoigu mentioned satellites I think … tik tok tik tok
I viewed some of the horrific video clips of the 13 civilians murdered by the US-backed psychos in Kiev so when Russia called up 300,000 reserves for new training they are not bluffing. That makes an estimated 9,000 civilians shredded in the Donbas region since 2014 killed by Ukrainian-fired and US-manufactured munitions in many instances.
Meanwhile, the Germans have castrated themselves.
Three hypersonic missiles with “City of London”, “Washington” and “Brussels” stenciled on the leading edge of those missiles please.
Sgt. Based says
300,000 Russian troops are about to enter the battlefield
It’s turning from a “special military operation” to an actual war
I assume after the breakaway republics join Russia, Ukraine will do some more attacking on NATO orders, and the Russian army will do what the Russian army does when Russian territory is invaded:
Swarm them with a human wave.
The beginnings of WW3
Well Larry, I’m starting to realize I’m just not “politically diplomatic” enough in my soul to have “enemies” that I’d run around in outer space with (Kazak ISS taking US grifters with) or handing over Azov Nazis from the steel plant, along with American & UK merc prisoners. Russia hasn’t said a thing about anything they got out of these “goodwill” gestures. Guess I liked the old old old days where an enemy was an enemy instead of “partial mobilization” “oh and here are your guys back… need a ride to ISS??”… Frankly, the whole world order sucks and is fake. Game changer?? OK…
Well, here’s wishing Russia and the liberated people of Ukraine the very best!
But of course, those referendums would have to be “shams”, since the US has no way to rig them currently, unlike the Maiden Coup.
(No, I’m not a proponent of Trump’s Big Lie; he lost, fair and square, deservedly in my mind. Nor am I in any way a fan of Biden’s — he who was going to END these “forever wars”. As for the “left”, I consider myself a fairly militant Leftist, and have the utmost disdain for generalizations cast by would-be members of the “right”. It is the rampant IMPERIALISTS we should be opposing, not each other!)
Thanks for any fine assessment, Larry.
Sorry, that should say “*another* fine assessment” above.
Oops — and “*Maidan* Coup”. Egads!
Jeff the beast says
These fake referenda change nothing…the offensive goes as planned to obliterate the ork army once and for all!!! Slava ukrajini!!!
Larry Johnson says
Enjoy your delusion.
Dien Bien Phu?
A more appropriate analogy is Ireland.
In the UK General Election immediately after the WW1 Armistice, Irish nationalists running on an independence platform won a huge landslide victory.
The elected nationalists chose not to go to Westminster. Instead, they assembled in Dublin and dec;ared themselve the parliament of an independent Irish Republic.
Din the so-called self-styled “Mother of Democracies” honour the democratically expressed will of the Irish people for self-determination and independence?
They finally left the South after 2 1/2 years of war.
The Irish Government today is a treasonous subserviant abble of EU/NATO gombeen men and bitches.
Most Americans aren’t even aware that:
1) there is a Russian-leaning population in Ukraine
2) that there has been an 8-year civil war that has killed 14,000 according to the UN
Why not? The Western press doesn’t talk about it because it would ruin the narrative of Good Ukraine vs Evil Russia.
I for one think Ukraine should be divided.