If you want to know how the war is going in Ukraine, you only needed to take note of one piece of “news” today–Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin called his Russian counterpart:
US Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin spoke with his Russian counterpart for the first time since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the Pentagon announced on Friday.
The call lasted approximately an hour and was at the request of Austin, who used the first call between the two in 84 days to urge Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu to implement an “immediate ceasefire,” according to a brief readout of the call. The two last spoke on February 18, a week before Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine.CNN
If Russia was losing or completely stuck in Ukraine, one would expect that Sergei Shoigu would be the guy calling Austin and begging for mercy. Well, that is not what happened. It was Austin that placed the call, apparently unconcerned about his recent public call to weaken Russia. Why would Austin urge Shoigu to implement an “immediate ceasefire” if Russia was getting its ass kicked? Russia getting whipped by Ukraine is exactly what Austin has called for. Remember?
“We want to see Russia weakened to the degree that it can’t do the kinds of things that it has done in invading Ukraine. . .”
If Russia is on the ropes, why call off the beating? You call off the fight when its your guy getting pummeled. The Russian offensive in the Donbass has ramped up significantly in the last week and it is carving up entrenched Ukrainian units with no hope of being reinforced or rescued by a counter-offensive.
I want to show you a false battle map that is representative of the disinformation being fed to a gullible audience in America and Europe. This map was published by a goofy chick, Ashley Cornell, who betrays her ignorance of the military situation and failed to fact check the wild claims from “war expert” Justin Bronk:
Let me highlight the lies for you. Start with Snake Island:
Russia suffers losses trying to secure the island after a series of Ukrainian attacks.
WRONG!! The Ukrainians tried and failed to take the tiny rock on the even of the Liberation Day celebrations in Russia on 9 May. Ukraine lost big–the death of more than 60 Ukrainian marines and members of elite AFU units, four fixed wing combat aircraft, 10 helicopters, 3 boats and 30 unmanned aerial vehicles. The Russians knew the attack was coming and were lying in wait. They apparently put some bait on the barren rock–some sophisticated missiles–to attract the Ukrainians. It worked.
Heavy bombardment continues at Azovstal as last defenders hold out.
DELIBERATELY MISLEADING. Yes, bombs and missiles continue to rain down on those parts of the Azovstal steel plant where a shrinking number of Azov battalion fanatics hunker down and send out video pleas for rescue. The a few of the wives of the men trapped in the bowels of Azovstal are now on social media begging for someone to save their guys. Here is one of the ladies, who previously posted a photo of her in her combat pose. The second image–she’s weeping for her man–showed up this week.
The situation in Mariupol is returning to normal and Russia controls the city. The Russians are restoring electrical and water services and providing food to the population.
Ukrainian counter-attack reaches Russian border and threatens to break Donbas supply line.
LIE–The Ukrainians have not reached the Russian border and at least one Russian Battalion Tactical Group has crossed the Severs Donetsk river and are expanding their position south toward Kharkiv. But this is a sideshow. The area is isolated and there is only one significant road running from Kharkiv to Belgorod in Russia.
DOUBLE LIE–There is zero threat to the “DONBAS SUPPLY LINE.” Those lines are south and east of Kharkiv. Just look at the map–the Donbas with the city of Luhansk is prominently displayed. Kharkiv is 230 miles northwest of Luhansk.
The map does get two things right–the Russia has taken Avdiivka and has surrounded Ukrainian troops at Severodonetsk. It is because of the progress Russia is making in the Donetsk that Lloyd Austin called Sergei Shoigu to beg for some mercy. I suspect that General Shoigu told Austin, идите стучите по песку (which is Russian for “go pound sand.”)
One more observation regarding the supposed defeat of the Russians north of Kharkiv on the border of Russia. The people writing on this cannot even get their facts straight about the size of a Russian Battalion Tactical Group aka BTG. Here are three different “experts” with their numbers:
Each Russian Battalion (BTG) tactical group has around 700-900 soldiers (Justin Bronk)
According to the DOD on 18 April there are almost a dozen BTGs in Mariupol. As each BTG has about 200 infantry, then 11 x 200 gives us 2,200 infantry. (Christopher Lawrence, Dupuy Institute)
A Russian battalion tactical group consists of about 1,000 troops. (Associated Press)
The western media has been crowing about the mighty Ukrainians wiping out a Russian BTG. Yet no photos of Russian medical units recovering the dead and wounded from the battle site have been published on Ukrainian or Russian sites. But let us assume the claim is true–the Ukrainians reportedly ambushed and defeated one BTG. It is meaningless as far as the progress of the Russian war effort is concerned. If the Russians were concerned about the battle over a pontoon bridge they would have deployed fixed wing and rotary wing support aircraft armed with rockets and delivered an artillery barrage on the attacking Ukrainians. That apparently did not happen either.
I am not privy to Russian war plans. But I do know that Russia would be rushing reinforcements to the area if this was an important battle. They are not. Even more telling is you are not seeing video and photos of a Ukrainian horde pouring over the Russian border. This looks to me like one more failed attempt reminiscent of Weekend at Bernie’s–propping up a Ukrainian corpse and pretending it is alive.
Sam McGowan says
I believe literally nothing coming out of Ukraine. They’ve been lying from Day One, which should be obvious to anyone who knows the first thing about propaganda. Zelensky made claims about how Russia was using clusterbombs, which are forbidden. The trouble is that neither Russia, the United States or Ukraine are signatories to that convention, which is made up mostly of countries that don’t have them. Then he cried about the use of white phosphorus, which dates back to World War I and was widely used in World War II. Their use is restricted but the former actor offered no proof they had been used.
Yep, if Austin is calling Russia, it means Ukraine is in big trouble.
these amateurish propaganda are directed to the western sheeple who blindly support ukrops with their stupid ukraine flag in their name and hashtag isupporturkraine and constantly shout slavaukraini ..
after all these ppl believe in ghost of kiev , endless footage of destroyed russian aircraft made from computer game ARMA , and following endless OSInT disinfo sites
“Epoch Times”is owned by the Unification Church aka “the Moonies.” And yes, they are CIA affiliated. I would not trust anything they say, even if it happens to be true.
No, it’s part of Falun Gong, not the Unification Church. My bad.
This is excellent news!! I was wondering if they were ever going to get to the talking stage.
I don’t expect Russia to stop or change anything, way to much invested now, but at least with some open lines of communication the nuclear threat recedes a touch.
Eric Newhill says
Yes. This is good news indeed. Talking better than more shooting. I don’t know how the Russians can trust the US at this point. The US is going to have to show something big and fairly critical as a sign of good faith. Also, the EU is going to have to demonstrate the willingness to put pressure on the US due to EU economic pain (Russia would take favorable note of that). I guess will have to wait and see. Sadly, the killing will continue. Russia would be very foolish to slow the momentum of their progress. In fact, Russia should turn up the heat to the next level.
Russia must be about ready to break out. Or they are about the find some long lost secrets.
Thanks for the focus!
Yes even the Epoch Times – normally a pretty solid source, well better than the NYT – reported the Russia was withdrawing due to heavy losses, “intelligence agencies say” .
The kicker is of course the last line.
I take no joy seeing and hearing about Ukrainian fathers, husband’s and sins dying like this. But this carnage falls 100% on the US and UK who seem to be ones holding Zelenskys puppet strings.
Zelensky is bought and paid for, and my only hope is the Ukrainians say enough is enough and do a full Ceausescu on his ass. Then Russia can deal with the Nazis without distraction.
Epoch times are cia funded propaganda site , same lvl of fake news with MSM
I don’t think they are that bad. I’ve seen a lot in their reporting not available elsewhere but this article hits their credibility pretty hard.
if you think epoch times is not that bad then theres only 2 possibities : you are living in delusional world and epoch times give you your daily fix to enforce your delusion OR you are a shill / troll who want to plug ‘trustworthy epoch times’ here
either way your judgement and all your posts are suspect
Sheesh, calm down will you? Breath in, Breath out. For good information gathering you have to use any source you can find especially these days. Since you don’t read it, their coverage of the Biden laptop was stellar and quite accurate. and they are brutally truthful in their reporting of the self destruction of American cities.
“Yes even the Epoch Times – normally a pretty solid source”
Say what? They are a CiA funded Falun Gong so called News Mob who are extremely hateful of China and Russia.
Yes even the Epoch Times – normally a pretty solid source, well better than the NYT
+1 but I nearly lost a keyboard.
i think he trust epoch times because he hate china and epoch times constantly post anti china fake news and he wallow in the sinophobic hatred. it enforces his delusional world view on how china is crap nation etc etc
funny how fools and sheeple in US are divided by russophobic and sinophobic people , told by media to hate one side.. when in reality china and russia now a very strong alliance and cover each other economically and militarily.
it is both sad and funny watching fake media MSM tried to potray US stratetgy to crack china x russia friendship
i wonder what kind of offer poor lil austin bring to the table in his begging session
Austin isn’t smart enough to embrace reality. I can imagine him full of ego and bluster telling the Russians they are going to get the asses kicked if they don’t quit.
The whole upper brass at the Pentagon considers aggogance their holy due.
i think you read too much MSM if you think austin or other high level ppl come to a meeting with bluster like a cowboy in movies..
such childish comment from you enforce my belief you are trolling in here
Take a stress pill.
All American generals are full of bluster and ego to make up for their lack of competence. A someone who has on his past careers found himself having to brief 3 stars and above I can tell you that most are legends in their own minds and act like it.
Senator Rand Paul is holding up the $30B package as he wants fiscal accountability. Of course Chuck the Shmuck says, the Jr. Senator is holding up help. Your analysis here suggests that the US, and of course the EU over $500M Euros to a country that is getting its ass kicked? There have been increased weapons given, heavier more powerful weapons provided to the Ukraine as well. The contrary news sources, including your analysis here suggests that no one knows WTF is going on! I do know Austin/Milley/Biden are the most incompetent administration to be handling this, and perhaps the only one with sense, other than Larry Johnson is Tucker Carlson and Rand Paul!
Correction $40B in legislative package, of course who knows how much of that will go to the Green New Deal and other corrupted projects. I am against this legislation!
I expect whatever small amount makes it past the Lockheed and Raytheon black holes, and filters through key congressional re-ekection funds, a few NGOs, the Wall Street transfer “fees”, Ukrainian government officials retirement funds, the Ukrainian oligarchs, and Lichtenstein numbered bank accounts, Zelensky’s London bank accounts will be pilfered by the Nazis.
Amount to help suffering Ukrainian people will be near enough to zero.
Keith Harbaugh says
Your current focus on the unfortunately all-important war in Ukraine seems entirely appropriate.
But if we get past this without a nuclear Armageddon,
some interest may return to the Durham investigations.
I think Margot Cleveland has been doing an excellent job of covering those.
She has a thorough knowledge of the law,
combined with a conservative perspective.
See her many columns covering the Durham investigation at her archive:
Good point the war has buried Russia-Clinton-CIA gate well.
Thank you for that. Excellent reporting by Cleveland.
Listening to the radio this morning, you’d think that Russia was completely helpless with hundreds dead. And that ukraine was the superpower.
And these headlines/stories are based on ‘American intelligence’ and what the ukraine government is stating.
Is zelensky still begging for money and arms and HELP from western and European countries?
Since when do Super Powers have to beg for HELP?
Zelensky seems to have been quiet for last few days.
My guess the Nazis are not happy. Internal trouble with morale. Divided government.
americans are and have been the most heavily propagandized people on earth for decades. imo only north koreans exceed that level. like mushrooms, americans are kept in the dark and fed bullshit since at least the 1950’s. all levels of education in america have been dumbed down and politicized to the point only a small percentage can actually think with a serious critical ability to analyse despite efforts to prevent that and that is exactly how americas ruling elite and politicians they control want it to stay.
the real problem for america having succumbed to this line of elite reasoning is the usa is no longer competitive in most areas of high technology (facebook and twitter are not high tech) and military technological power necessary to remain at the top of the heap. for that REAL education for people is needed which is exactly what is feared by the rulers.
austin is a poster child for exactly the problem america now faces……an honest meritocracy where the best rise to the top is essential for any nation to stay competitive has been replaced by box checking for irrelevant qualities in reality but deemed required to maintain the veneer of equality of outcome irrespective of ability….. a specious concept corrosive to any who adopt it.
as the west degrades into steaming mediocrity so follows its future and standard living.
russia and china are going to be the least of americas problems in 10 years, hell they already are.
I wholeheartedly agree.
plenty of horror stories about austin from fellow member of pentagon , reading it i feel the same vibe of malcolm nance incompetence which also a persona no grata in specops group becasue of his constsnt bluster and boast
btw i do not agree north korea is heavily propagandized , the only thing about NK it is a victim of massive western propaganda demonzatiom , endless smear and ridicule , to make it seem like a hermit kingdom. It is not , the people are great and friendly and yes they have to be careful about foreign influence but every nation need to protect itself.
problem with americans they are fed lies like about Nk or China or Russia or Iran and these americans believe it hook line and sinker , these american are truly arrogant ignorant foolish sheeple who never even visit the said countries and see for themselves the real world.
weak kinded sheeple in US and western nations are living in bubble of delusional lies
You just gave me a ration of crap for saying the same damn thing! Get your story straight.
Other than the obvious. I wonder why do this. My guess:
– get the Azovstal guys out – who the hell is in there and what do they know
– re arm or plot as we know they are never going to stop going after Russia
– show the Europeans they feel their pain
– another excuse for ground troops – ‘we offered a ceasefire they didn’t want it’ and pretent US not in war but concerned third party
Note a Russian nuclear submarine emerged from water next to New York completely undetected by US.
I’d say that sub fits into the category of “fair warning “
there already russian nuke boat in open ocean on both east and west coast , they donot need to surface but im sure the USN subforce wouldnt stop tracking or following them if they can, newer russian subs are silent.
D.E. Murray says
Ya know what, Larry? I think the pics of that woman are b*llshit too. She’s too pretty. She’s a model, and got two paychecks. She doesn’t have a husband in Azovstal. Everything the Ukrainians (and sadly, us, the Americans) put out about this war is a lie.
James Owen says
I don’t think that the pics were taken in Ukraine, or Europe. Something about the concrete, the floor, and the door reminds me a whole lot of the gym at my old, and long torn down, middle School in Sherman, Texas. Even the color of the door is/was the old School color.
James Owen says
I was suspicious of the forced river crossing scenario. I don’t think that the Russians, of all armies, would fail to suppress the enemy’s artillery. Or fail to suppress any defensive positions on the opposing bank.
On WBAP radio, Dallas/Fort Worth, they reported that the Ukrainians have put a captured Russian soldier on trial for war crimes. However, I haven’t heard this anyplace else. I tend to think that it’s part of the “Ukraine is winning,” narrative.
Gonzalo Lira calculated the current rate of attrition:
At the current rate of attrition, the Armed Forces of Ukraine will see 10,000 soldiers die by the end of this month, another 20,000 dead by the end of June. This war cannot be won by Ukraine—it’s over. The only solution is to sue for peace. But the US won’t allow this.
Very disappointing seeing Mitch McConnell and the Rs going to kiss Zelensky ass and beg for 40bn to Ukrainie when US out of babyfood.
This is just full of pork. These guys are all corrupt.
Don Jr had it right. Why the hell send money to corrupt Ukraine. If Mitch and that motley crew get elected the right is as good as dead.
Good for Rand Paul but when I saw the words “fiscal accountability”, I just laughed at the oxymoron. In DC if there is one concept that is avoided like the plague it is ACTUAL accountability. I agree, it’s just another $40 billion down the toilet.
Chris Chuba says
I [too] have concluded that our MSM is unreliable because they are compromised by their govt handlers. We will only know the true state of this war by reading in between the lines. Therefore, when this horrible war is over, look at the peace agreement. The winner always gets the best terms.
Further Money into Ukraine and this time US$40,000 million which then out of the back door as usual and this time to Biden, his cronies and Adminitration, and where it happens in every war that the US starts in reality through NATO and I am amazed that the American people have not realised this yet and how they are being fleeced every time by all US Administrations where it makes 100s of multi-millionaires every time and several billionaires – For we never know the ‘real’ truth from our political leaders, government and MSM, as the ‘Real’ truth only comes out years into the future, when most are dead that told us the lie – history abounds with false flags, fake and false wars – Former defence secretary McNamara as a single example of countless and where several years after the end of that war on primetime US TV, stated that the “The Gulf of Tonkin” military incident that started the War was a false flag, where through the war and its aftermath, over a million Vietnamese and US lives were lost and where millions suffered the rest of their lives through their war injuries.
Therefore the question to the people is, Do ‘You’ Want to KNOW the TRUTH and the LIES through the ALERNATIVE TRUTH and what next is coming – for the following are weblinks that you will not see on western social media, from our MSM or what our political leaders and government will tell you, due to worldwide news censorship and suppression of any news that is not the political narrative, either lies or the truth and currently as an example, the Ukraine War, the Covid Pandemic and the World Economic Forum (The WEF) who now have gained control of political leaders and cabinets and where they have said so in Davos and in western interviews – don’t believe me, do your own homework on the subject as it is 100% TRUE ! https://worldinnovationfoundation.blogspot.com/2022/05/weblinks-to-what-you-are-not-being-told.html
The areas that the Russian army used to fix Ukrainian army in place, were left by the Russians during the peace talks in Istanbul. They were not “Liberated by Ukraine” as it says on the map. It’s all those small details that shows the partiality and lies used against Russia daily.
Keith Harbaugh says
Some words of wisdom:
Note: The article of which the above is the conclusion
contains a quite detailed presentation of what the author views as Russia’s alternatives for cutting the supply lines into Ukraine from the West.
He also quotes from ISW reports, noting their neocon provenance.
A commenter on my blog posted a rapid analysis of the ‘river crossing disaster’ by a site called RWA (Russians With Attitude).
My recognition skills for Russian and Ukrainian armor are not very good – I was Navy, not Army or Int – so I cannot vouch for their BTR analysis, but on the face of it, even for laymen, they make a couple of immediately-sensible points;
1. All the photography offered by Ukraine of the battle scene is either shots taken from a respectful distance of blowups made from those long-distance photos. This is not typical of Ukrainian Tik-Tok celebrations, including close-ups of the dead and trophy shots. This suggests the Ukrainians are not in control of the crossing location; and,
2. Ukrainian reports shortly after what they are celebrating as a great Ukrainian victory, with terrible Russian losses, cited fighting on the other side of the river crossing, where no fighting should be happening if nobody made it across.
Eric Newhill says
Interesting. Thanks for sharing. I thought the Russians lost a skirmish at the river crossing, but now I think I was too quick to assume a couple points and got conned. Like Larry says, it doesn’t matter. Even if the mainstream story is true, it matters not an iota as to the outcome of the war. In any war, the victors lose men and materiel and even major battles. I am somewhat disgusted by American friends that cheer every time some Russians are allegedly killed. It’s some kind of weird schadenfreude that they must be experiencing. That said, I view those that cheer UKR deaths the same way, though I can understand that a little better (the people – or agents of – who pushed for this and are lying to us as getting killed).
That ‘of blowups’ should be ‘or blowups’.
Another great post! I am afraid of a large scale false flag due to the US’s failures (After all, NATO is just a US front). To bend the famous phrase, “It’s the War Card, Stupid!” They have already played the PR one and lost. Biden and the Demorats are desperate or they wouldn’t have done this. Food shortages are starting. The War Card, the real one, is all they have left in their hand.
Or maybe…US and NATO members underestimated hardware needs and depleted stockpiles to unsafe levels, can’t recoup fast enough due to supply chain and labor. Austin needs a pause.
Have you read this article
Key thrust Western political strategy is wrong but Russia has supply line issues States:
– Russia short supply lines of 50km due to lack of control of rail which stops in cities and they have taken few cities
– Putin refused generals request to renew retiring army by one year contract, pissing off generals and depleting forces of experience
– Poland created Ukrainian Russian width rail line gauge some distance in its border so supply trains don’t stop at border due to change of track size
– can’t go round
– Russia not on war footing and forward APU vehicles only carrying 3/4 as opposed to 8 infantry. Which reduces ammunition and troops at front
– microchip for precision technology is limited
One thing missing from this analysis is the impact of L&D republ armies to numbers.
The writer views the escalation to a tactical nuclear belt in Ukrainie border as most likely, NATO may then invade through Belarus (I think air strikes more likely) causing full out nuke strikes.
This was not a war that Russia wanted and there seems to be merit to the fact that it’s going to get tougher for them at least until ground dries up enough to deploy truck to drive round cities
Do you think there is credence to Putin not quite getting ahead of the game and getting Russia on a war footing faster.
Does someone have an inkling why Scott Ritter, who until now seemed to be a staunch realist, “radically shifted his overall assessment”, apparently seeing one M777 howitzer operating in Donbass (an overnight change of mind seems quite weird to me), and moved from “The Ukrainian army is being ground to the ground” to “Russia is going to lose the war” ?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m4SlSILtlpc (at around 48:00)
Unless I’m very mistaken, nothing of import has happened and the dynamics are still the same, still overwhelmingly favoring Russia.
Eric Newhill says
Lots of “concern trolls” have been spreading the news that Ritter has done a 180 and now thinks Russia is in trouble in UKR and might lose. Trolls, apparently, have low listening, information processing and reasoning abilities.
Ritter clearly states that he still thinks Russia will achieve victory in the East and S.E. per the “special military operation”; that the grinding down of UKR in the East/S.E. is continuing and will continue. However, he says that Russia will lose the larger war in UKR because they are facing an influx of support from US/NATO and they are not responding on a wide enough scale and scope. Specifically, Ritter thinks that Russian failure to attack in Western UKR will permit weapons influx as well as training, rest and refit of UKR troops. Russia needs to interdict western weapons before they reach the front in the East/S.E. So Russia attains its limited objectives, Then long term they are attacked by a rebuilt and well armed UKR and slowly bleed out. Russia still has the ability to adjust its approach and change that emerging reality on the battlefield. That’s all he’s saying.
IMO, Ritter is definitely worth listening to. Yet, he is not an omniscient God of analysis.
My concern – which Ritter does touch on – is that the US/NATO are forcing an escalation to an obviously existential war; a move from a special military operation to a full mobilization of Russian military power which, in turn brings about escalation by US/NATO. Next thing you know we are in a full out WW3. IMO, there are neocons who welcome this opportunity to just get it on and get it over with. Very dangerous.
Anyhow, you can listen here and form your own opinion. There’s a bonus in that Ray McGovern is also in the convo.
Eric Newhill says
Observation; Most all of the analysis that has Russia losing depend on the Russian leadership being dull witted, slow to adapt, corrupt and generally militarily incompetent.
It should be noted that some small set of Russophiles, who think Russia will lose, propose that Russia is willing to self-sacrifice to protect civilians on the tactical level and to avert escalation to WW3 on the strategic level. So not losing from stupidity, but from noble higher ethics and concern for humanity.
Unspoken in these outlooks is the idea that US and NATO are both competent and ready to take the war to the next level. I see no evidence to support those assumptions in the historical record. $Gazillions in US supplied weapons, training and other aid did not keep S. Vietnam from being overrun by the North, did not help in Afghanistan nor did much good in Iraq when it was attacked by ISIS. Maybe UKR is somehow different (seriously – maybe it is).
Maybe the Russian military and civilian leadership really is just a messed-up collection of drunken morons with subpar weapons systems and tactics. OTOH, maybe they really are closet hippies that will give in to Western willingness to escalate out of love for the planet.
Whatever the truth of the above, the outcome of the special military operation hinges on it, as does, long term, the fate of the world.
D.E. Murray says
Ritter has a tendency to contradict himself and to say exaggerated things. I’d have to run the video again to see where he contradicts himself, but at one point he claims that NATO is a joke, and later says that Russia couldn’t fight NATO troops. Contradiction.
Then he said that Finland would “cease to exist” as a nation if they joined NATO. What did he mean by that?
About all the weaponry going to a reconstituted UAF, where are they gonna get these guys? Ukraine has 42 million people, 7 million now refugees. In 2000 they had a birth rate of about 1 per woman. It’s not Afghanistan, where birth rates were sky high in the early aughts, creating many recruits.
What he points out is important, because it underscores how deep in we are. That’s what scares me. There’s no off-ramp.
Eric Newhill says
Yeah. Ritter is a bit of a loose cannon, but much less so than other sources these days. He’s to be taken with a grain of salt and his ideas collated with others. I’m with you and have been since the beginning of this. UKR troops are disproportionately grey beards. Who will man the weapons? Who will be fighting 2 years from now – and, my biggest concern – as you say, there’s no off ramp; just lots of doubling down until what? Major cities across the globe are glowing in the weird midnight sun? I have no faith in the people “in charge”. They aren’t that intelligent or wise; at least not on our side. In fact, they are mostly quite ordinary and mundane, from what I’ve seen of them, and those driving decisions are sometimes the more bellicose lunatic fringe. They’re locked into a mindset.
D.E. Murray says
“He’s to be taken with a grain of salt and his ideas collated with others”
That’s exactly what I’m doing. I get my info from here, @RWApodcast (very honest), @ArmchairW, Col. MacGregor & Dreizin. They give the most accurate assessments of the military situation from a pro-American standpoint. Others are OK here & there but they are (a) marred by anti-Americanism and (b) they intersperse sound commentary with dumb stuff that makes me doubt the rest of what they say – I could give examples but I won’t, it’s not relevant.
(OK, one example: Gonzalo Lira repeated the myth about the $1M NASA pen. Didn’t happen. Myth is easily refuted by looking on the internet. He just hates America, that’s all.)
Re: Ritter and his big reassessment – there are grains of truth in it. No, Ukraine doesn’t have thousands of white Taliban, or VC – a virtually unlimited supply of young, fit fanatics who will sustain 50% casualties for the cause. They just ain’t there. Birthrates guys – look at the birthrates. They just didn’t get born.
But here’s where I’ll disagree with Larry, a little bit. Ukraine has a few hundred thousand troops in the hole, who aren’t in the Donbass, waiting for their chance to kill Russians. And they’re being egged on by NATO.
Plus what about all those stories I read about thousands of European extremists who flooded into Ukraine in the years after the Maidan coup? I don’t hear much about them now. Yes, I saw the video about the airstrike and how they pissed their pants, but there are thousands of others also waiting to kill Russians.
I don’t say they are a great fighting force, but they can be a huge pain in the ass.
Trouble in Ukraine is what a rational government run by wise men like Ike would never want.
Trouble is what the bozos who run our government now DO want. Because they are bozos.
Bad bad idea.
Thanks for listening.
$40 billion is definitely a morale booster on the Ukrainian side and a buzz kill in the Russian side. I think it is time for China and India to come out of the closet in some way to buzz kill Nato. A lot of that $40 billion is going to for the salaries and pensions of the Ukrainians. Obviously that kind money buys support for the war. How long will we keep doing it? Ukraine is now a US welfare state.
Larry Johnson says
I disagree with Scott on this. We are not seeing tens of thousands of Ukrainian youth flocking to enlist to defend Slava Ukrani. Just the opposite. People getting the hell out. Those who have been coerced to join the fight are middle aged guys with vodka guts. The West does not have enough money to keep Ukraine afloat as the economic pain inflicted by Russia turns to gangrene for Ukrainian entrepreneurs.
Eric Newhill says
Yes. The will to fight doesn’t exist among the UKR people. They cannot win in the long run. The US/NATO will have to enter the war; meaning “boots on the ground”
D.E. Murray says
See my comment above. I do not think that’s entirely true.
D.E. Murray says
Are we or are we not training Ukrainian troops in Poland and Germany, as Scott is saying?
Larry Johnson says
I have no reason to dispute Scott on this point.
Bill Wade says
GonzaloLira1968 twitter informs that a retired U.S. Army General has come up out of the hell that is in Mariupol.
D.E. Murray says
Just heard something very depressing, Larry, here:
Listen to Ritter at the beginning from 02:53 to 07:00. While he acknowledges that the SMO is unfolding satisfactorily, he points out that the Ukrainian military is reconning military capability outside Ukrainian territory (in Poland & Germany) w/billions of dollars of NATO aid; thinks that this means “lengthened conflict” which can “bleed Russia” unless the latter declares war.
This is very depressing. Interested in your thoughts.
It was a buzz kill for me as well.
D.E. Murray says
Apologies, a previous commenter has already referred to this.
Ritter repeats his assertion at 51:52 – he really thinks that Ukraine can keep up the pressure on the Russians even after losing the Donbass.
I don’t buy this. He’s confusing the Ukrainians with the Taliban. Not all Ukrainians are hardcore nationalists. They have a very low birth rate.
60 Minutes did a feature lauding Bellingcat tonight, recounting the Skripal and Navalny poisoning attempts, the Malaysian airliner downing, and as usual generally portraying Putin simplistically. No evidence or details were provided. Rather, it seemed like a brief item churned out to keep its viewers in the fold.
Eric Newhill says
I see the new IO meme is that Austin called Shoigu not to beg for a cease fire, but warn the Russians that they are about to be totally destroyed if they don’t give up and go home now. Perhaps some small carrot in the form a face saving opportunity.
The only problem I have with that concept is that Austin would have to be pretty stupid to think that Putin would buy into it (always a possibility, of course). Putin/Russia has to know that the US isn’t going to just let the Russia military withdraw and everything will be fine. Obviously NATO expansion will continue, sanctions will continue, color revolutions will be attempted (and a withdrawal would only make Putin’s government that much more vulnerable to such a coup). An invasion would probably even be a real possibility given how drunk on success the neocons would be, greatly overestimating their strength and Russia’s weakness.
But if that is what the meeting was really all about, then WW3 is that much more imminent. There is no off ramp for any engaged party. No one should be cheering for Austin if he delivered such a message – no one except the war pigs.
Austin will do as he is told. The operative question these days is who is actually writing the script?