To the surprise of many, voices of sanity are finally beginning to break through in the rigid media atmosphere in Poland as it relates to the war in Ukraine. In a country that has been at the forefront of supporting the regime in Kiev and where state institutions do not shy away from vigorously prosecuting infringements on the official propaganda line, whereby Moscow is the Evil Empire, Vladimir Putin is Adolf Hitler and Volodymyr Zelensky is (who else?) Winston Churchill, such a change in tone coming from representatives of the Polish military elites is indicative of a turning point. What is more, these are not the premonitions of some antiwar dissidents, but of the crème de la crème of the Polish military elites.
During a strategic debate at the presidential National Security Office, General Rajmund Andrzejczak, Chief of the General Staff of the Polish Armed Forces, made clear his pessimistic assessment of the effects of Western efforts aimed at strengthening Ukraine’s hand on the battlefield. After pointing out that, “war was, is, and there is no indication that it will be otherwise, a policy, and it has an essential number of economic factors in its determinants: finance, infrastructure issues, social issues, technology, food production, and a whole set of issues that need to be put into this box to understand this war, he stressed”, Andrzejczak went on to observe that Russia will not be running out of resources to prosecute the Special Military Operation anytime soon. “Those financial instruments it [Russia] had before the war, the dynamics of spending and the effectiveness of sanctions or the whole complex economic situation indicate that Russia will have the money for the war” – Andrzejczak stated.
Ukraine, on the other hand, according to the General, “has huge financial problems.” He noted that there is no indication in the near future that Ukrainians who fled the war will return home and begin the process of rebuilding their country. Andrzejczak states that as a soldier he considers it his duty to tell it like it is. “We simply don’t have the ammunition. The industry is not ready not only to send equipment to Ukraine, but also to replenish our stocks, which are melting. This awareness is not the same as it is here on the Vistula, and this absolutely must be communicated, without anesthesia, to everyone and in all forums where it is possible, which I am doing” – Andrzejczak pointed out.
Of course, Andrzejczak, while making these observations, still wants NATO’s proxy war against Russia to continue and he obviously prefers to see a Ukrainian victory, but as a report in Zububrothers points out: “Nobody should therefore doubt Andrzejczak’s intentions or suspect that he’s a so-called ‘Russian agent’ since he sincerely wants the West to win its proxy war with Russia in Ukraine, but he’s also very worried that it might lose unless his side acknowledges the unpopular truths that he just shared.”
This is a welcome development, such obvious and yet unpopular truths up until a few weeks back were, in the current Polish media atmosphere, considered to be Russian propaganda. Any such observations were always met by angry reactions on par with the recent cringeworthy and absurd words of the Polish Prime Minister, Mateusz Morawiecki, who in an interview with BBC assured the audience that that a war between Russia and NATO would end in Moscow’s defeat. How Morawiecki imagines such a scenario considering the blunt words of Poland’s top general about the lack of ammunition is anyone’s guess. It is just another example of a Western politician speaking on a topic he does not understand, even if his very public ignorance comes at the price of more dead Ukrainian soldiers.
But General Andrzejczak is not the only one making uncomfortable waves. Retired General Waldemar Skrzypczak, who has been making the television, radio and newspaper rounds in the last few months, making what could only be described as unhinged observations and predictions, ranging from the Russians being 2-3 days away from losing the war, Russians committing a holocaust in Ukraine, Russian logistics being paralyzed, Russians running out of ammunition and manpower, seems to have finally seen the light.
In a recent appearance alongside Dr. Wojciech Szewko, who himself made several lucid observations about the changing geopolitical landscape, after months of belittling Moscow and its military prowess, Skrzypczak made a startling statement: “I think the truth is that the Russians are winning.” He then went to elaborate on the criticality of sufficient supplies and training provided to the Ukrainians, considering the truly dire situation on the battlefield. Taken together, Skrzypczak’s words from said interview are a total reversal of most of what he has been saying up to now. “If the Americans say now that they were building 9 armored brigades, these 9 armored brigades are only there to conduct small, shallow operational activities. If one talks about a counteroffensive, that is a term that is practically strategic in nature. For such an attack, for such a counteroffensive, one would need not 9, but rather 19-20 armored brigades” – Skrzypczak observed. The point of the spearhead apparently being prepared by Ukraine for the Spring counteroffensive, according to the general, is to penetrate deeply into Russian lines and that requires that the main attacking force needs its flanks to be protected. But, as stated by Skrzypczak, to achieve a breakthrough “this potential has to be three times larger than the one declared by the Americans.” Skrzypczak then goes on to pour cold water on the vast majority of what he himself has been saying in the past year:
“Ukraine does not have the potential to take back 20% of its territories. If she were to re-take them, she would need a 3-1 advantage over the Russian army along the entire front on the strategic level, she would need around 2 million soldiers to rout them. They have no chance of this because they do not have the equipment. The plants in the West have no such possibilities, such potential. Hence the efforts on the part of the diplomats to end this conflict as it could turn out in a few months that we will not have anything to help Ukraine with.”
These admissions seem to dovetail neatly not only with the recent revelations made manifest by the leaks of highly classified NATO documents pertaining to the prosecution of the war in Ukraine, but also with the words of General Christopher Cavoli, commander of United States European Command (EUCOM) and Supreme Allied Commander Europe, who testified on April 27th before the House Armed Services Committee and made relevant comments on the strength of the Russian military after one year of war in Ukraine. According to Cavoli, Russia has hardly taken any damage during the conflict.
So much for Russians running out of missiles.
These recent observations by generals Andrzejczak and Skrzypczak, obvious to anyone who simply listened to what representatives of the collective West were themselves saying, however reluctantly, in the last 6 months, can signify one of three things.
One possibility is that Warsaw has been told directly and firmly that Ukraine is on its way to losing the war and there is nothing NATO can do to prevent this outcome, short of nuclear war, and changes in the official narrative need to be initiated to prepare the public for the (oh the irony!) shock and awe of raw truth disseminating through the tv, radio and internet waves. Calling for a negotiated settlement in this scenario will no longer be considered to be acting in accordance with the Kremlin’s nefarious and devious wishes, as the Government plenipotentiary for the security of the Polish information space, Stanisław Żaryn (aka the Polish Baghdad Bob of combating “Russian disinformation”), would have us believe, but rather be a reflection of common sense and an acute survival instinct.
The second possibility is that we are dealing with a clueless class of military officers, who have no comprehension of Russian military doctrine, tactics, operational art and have for years internalizing the NATO-centric narrative of “the West and the rest”, without any regard for the multipolar reality emerging all around them. As Andrei Martyanov never ceases to point out in his books and highly recommended blog, one cannot underestimate the ignorance of the current Western elites in all things having to do with the real economy, tangibles, geopolitical strategy and military potential.
The third possibility is that such figures as the aforementioned generals knew the score from the very beginning, but instead chose to play political games, engage in lies in order not to rock the boat and fed the political leadership fairy tales of impending Russian defeat. On the other hand, emulating their Pentagon overlords when it comes to having “issues” with the truth would not come as a surprise. I, for one, cannot decide which of the three options is worse. Especially in the case of General Skrzypczak, who remains the literal the go to guy for media outlets from left to right, to do such a 180 must come as a shock to many. Whether the general realizes it or not and no matter the spin he might try to put on it now. To say he has egg all over his face would be an understatement.