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How Russia can end the war An invasion through Belarus would accelerate negotiations

A Ukrainian tank drives through Siversk in Donetsk (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

A Ukrainian tank drives through Siversk in Donetsk (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)


February 10, 2023   4 mins

Looking ahead, there are only two possible major military moves for Russia. Following the mobilisation of 300,000 reservists last autumn, of whom more than half are now combat-ready, Putin’s army is now larger than when it invaded last February. Then, the aim was not to start a war but to end it, with a quick victory forecast by Russian and US Intelligence, both equally intoxicated by the false promise of “post-kinetic” warfare; this would combine electronic propaganda with cyber-attacks on everything from military headquarters to civilian infrastructures. Generals who had never fought against patriotic Europeans but only against Middle Eastern sectarians, if they had fought at all, who considered tanks old-fashioned and had limitless respect for “information warfare”, heavily influenced the totally wrong estimates that misled both Biden and Putin.

After initial failure, Putin had two perfectly reasonable options. He could have ordered a retreat — a politically feasible choice since low-level warfare had been underway for years and the entire operation could have been passed off as an exercise in intimidation. Alternatively, he could have declared war, mobilised the Russian Armed forces and invaded Ukraine in earnest.

Instead of choosing between retreat or an all-out offensive, Putin and his unimpressive advisors simply tried one thing after another, from the launch of as many missiles as possible against Kyiv and other cities (even anti-aircraft missiles, with their small warheads) to an attempt to conquer Odesa via the industrial town of Mykolaiv, whose shipyard workers acted out a favourite theme of Soviet propaganda: workers streaming out of factories to fight the enemy with whatever weapons they had.

After that, there was mostly retreat for the Russian forces as they gave up the territories they had won at the start, around Kharkiv and on the northern edge of Kyiv. At this point, Putin’s aim was seemingly to keep the entire south, including the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia oblasts in addition to Donetsk and Luhansk.

Since Putin had not declared war to mobilise the Russian army (it would have meant calling up 18–year-old conscripts, and having their mothers at the Kremlin gate), he tried everything else, from deploying units manned by contract soldiers recruited in non-Russian peripheries in Siberia and the Caucasus to relying on the Wagner collection of desperadoes and ex-convicts. Finally, he decided to take the political risk of recalling 300,000 reservists.

It is these troops — or rather the actual number who turned up, and were not signed off for health reasons during their refresher training — who now provide the forces that Putin can send into action, in one of two ways.

First, these fresh soldiers might simply be used to continue fighting in the old way, which at this point in the war means to keep trying to drive the last Ukrainian forces out of Donetsk and Luhansk. This aim already looks achievable: the Russians are advancing in the village of Bilohorivka, the very last part of the Luhansk region that is still in Ukrainian hands, and they are also advancing against the city of Bakhmut in the very last part of Donetsk still held by Ukrainian forces. It is possible, then, or at least “not impossible”, that Putin is now trying to extract a slice of victory from a disastrous war, by offering to give up remaining Russian-controlled parts of Zaporizhzhia and Kherson in exchange for Ukraine’s surrender of Donetsk and Luhansk, the two regions which had the largest proportion of Russian speakers to begin with, where popular resistance to Ukrainian rule was strong.

Of course, Zelenskyy would also have to agree to negotiate, and aside from his expressed refusal to give up any territory at all including Crimea, it is not clear that he would have the authority to negotiate over territorial concessions. But that is when the reality of Ukraine’s limited sovereignty would emerge to settle the matter. The country now depends on the United States and its closest allies to survive, and the US in turn would have to go along with Europe’s major governments, who would undoubtedly demand an end to the war.

Moreover, the transfer could even acquire democratic legitimacy with properly supervised plebiscites in the two contested regions. A referendum can be anything or nothing, as in the farce staged by the Russians in Crimea on March 16, 2014. But a plebiscite is very precisely defined by the 1919 rules set at Versailles: it must involve not a handful but thousands of neutral inspectors to examine IDs and issue ballots, and territorial control by armed units sent by neutral countries. Those rules were applied in the plebiscites held to apportion disputed territories between Germany and Belgium, Germany and Denmark, Germany and Poland, and between Austria and Hungary. In every case, both sides accepted the result and violence stopped. Under the same rules, plebiscites could now be held in Donetsk and Luhansk with ballots assigned to anyone who can prove pre-2014 residence, even if they later left, as many refugees did before and after the new war.

But Putin also has a second path before him. He could leave the regional Donetsk and Luhansk troops, contract-soldier units and Wagner mercenaries to drive back the Ukrainians step by step, and he could use the fresh units of reservists — with their refurbished eight-wheel troop carriers, self-propelled artillery and main battle tanks — to change the terms of the war altogether, by launching a new invasion from Belarus.

Instead of more grinding frontal fights, Russian columns could advance straight down from Belarus into east-central Ukraine, towards Korosten and Zhytomyr to reach Vinnytsia, a part of the country that has seen no fighting, and where there are very few Ukrainian troops, and no obstacles in the flat terrain. In doing so, the Russians would cut off all the highways and railway lines that bring weapons, ammunition, and civilian supplies from Warsaw, Berlin, Prague and the West beyond them to Kyiv, Odesa and the entire south and east of the country, except for rare air freight.

If the Russian army can pull it off, that in itself would be an operational success that would restore some of its lost reputation, as well as Putin’s, which would not necessarily be a bad thing if it allows him to negotiate an end to the fighting. Yes, “negotiate”, because cutting off the roads and railways from the West would not actually open the way for a military victory. Russian columns could certainly do a right turn to drive into Kyiv, but once there they would be destroyed in a very accelerated second Stalingrad: Kyiv and its surroundings are now full of determined fighters amply equipped with anti-tank and other weapons, and columns of eight-wheel troops carriers are desperately vulnerable in urban areas.

But an operational-level victory that leaves the Russians astride Ukraine’s critical supply lines could open the way for the diplomatic solution. Yes, there is only one: the exchange of internationally-supervised plebiscites in Donetsk and Luhansk for Russian withdrawals from all other parts of the south and south-east, and of course an end to all fighting. From the first day, this was the only exit from the burning house of war, and so it still remains.


Professor Edward Luttwak is a strategist and historian known for his works on grand strategy, geoeconomics, military history, and international relations.

ELuttwak

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Sam Charles Norton
Sam Charles Norton
1 year ago

This is the most bonkers article I’ve ever read on Unherd! Totally detached from reality.

twph84xyqf
twph84xyqf
1 year ago

Care to elaborate, wise master?

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  twph84xyqf

No word from Sam.. maybe he reread the piece and changed his mind? Or maybe he’s one of the gung-ho types who thinks Ukraine will retake all of it’s former territory, including Crimea.. Maybe he’s hoping for a full scale invasion of Russia?

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Hyperbole simply weakens your argument.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

No argument.. merely a question? ..with a further hypothesis on a failure to answer the question.. the conch is in Sam’s hands.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

Straw man rather than hyperbole I reckon, but I take your point.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

No argument.. merely a question? ..with a further hypothesis on a failure to answer the question.. the conch is in Sam’s hands.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

Straw man rather than hyperbole I reckon, but I take your point.

Tom Graham
Tom Graham
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

How about the idea of negotiating with Russia – a country that sees it as a point of honour to violate any agreement it enters into.
Or the hilarious idea that the Russian army could conduct a successful blitzkrieg invasion though Belarus?

Martin Johnson
Martin Johnson
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Graham

That’s pretty funny, after Merkel, Hollande, and Poroshenko have all said they never had any intention of abiding by the Minsk Accords and used them to keep the Russians quiet while they armed Ukraine.
Historically the Russians have honored their treaties, but you need to be careful about the fine print as they will push pretty far. But the fact that they are tough and thorough negotiators is not the same as being dishonest; dishonesty has been more of a Western thing, like no NATO expansion East of the Oder-Neisse line, or the Minsk Accords.

Last edited 1 year ago by Martin Johnson
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Johnson

How about guaranteeing the territorial integrity of Ukraine in return for Ukraine giving up nuclear weapons?

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

How about guaranteeing the territorial integrity of Yugoslavia? Or Czechoslovakia?

Or, conversely, applying the same principles as those countries, how about accepting that the Donbass has no place or reason to be in Ukraine and accepting their independence or at least self government.

Which was the point of the Minsk agreement, that Ukraine and their NATO backers agreed to – and had no intent to honour.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

What was the point of the 1991 agreement to a free and independent Ukraine, with secure borders?
Indeed, agreements made under duress are not binding.

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

In 1991, Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia were single states

Ukraine got their sovereignty and separation without any drama or military attacks by Russians in 1991.
Maybe they should be obliged to extend the same courtesies to the Donbass, which is ethnically and politically separate from the rest of the Ukraine?

Kate Heusser
Kate Heusser
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Is it? Have you asked those who remain in those regions? Or who took up arms against the invading Russians, even though at an earlier stage they had thought that seceding to Russia might be in their best economic and cultural interests?

Kate Heusser
Kate Heusser
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Is it? Have you asked those who remain in those regions? Or who took up arms against the invading Russians, even though at an earlier stage they had thought that seceding to Russia might be in their best economic and cultural interests?

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

In 1991, Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia were single states

Ukraine got their sovereignty and separation without any drama or military attacks by Russians in 1991.
Maybe they should be obliged to extend the same courtesies to the Donbass, which is ethnically and politically separate from the rest of the Ukraine?

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Chekoslovakia decided, sovereignly and independently, to split up. So did Yougoslavia. The quarrel with NATO was about Serbia retaining territory by force against the wishes of the local population. If you want to be taken seriously you need to move some of your arguments slightly closer to reality.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

What was the point of the 1991 agreement to a free and independent Ukraine, with secure borders?
Indeed, agreements made under duress are not binding.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

Chekoslovakia decided, sovereignly and independently, to split up. So did Yougoslavia. The quarrel with NATO was about Serbia retaining territory by force against the wishes of the local population. If you want to be taken seriously you need to move some of your arguments slightly closer to reality.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

You forget four events that were game changers:
1. CIA orchestrated coup in 20i4 that ousted a freely elected (pro Russian) leader..
2. The CIA then installed a puppet under the leadership of NATO, a direct threat to Russia.
3. NATO then announced it would accept Ukraine as a member!!
4. The new regime persecuted the minority Russian speaking people in the Donbas for 8 years killing 14,000 there.
If similar events occurred in Canada or Mexico how might the US have reacted do you suppose?

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

1) 2) The last several Ukrainian presidents have been freely elected, and could have chosen to become part of the Russian near abroad – if they or their population had wanted to. Nguyen Van Thieu and Hamid Karzai were puppets. Zelensky is not.
3) Oh dear, NATO actually said out loud that they were willing to accept Ukraine as a member at some unspecified time in the future? If Ukraine were to ask? Does not sound all that aggressive to me – after allRUasssia could avoid it sikply by giving Ukraine a better offer.
4) That just might have something to do with minority Russian-speakers waging an armed secession against the government with the active help of a foreign power, don’t you think? The situation in the Donbass is neither simple not clear – as is often the case after an empire has broken up – but the story of innocent and powerless Russian-speakers being murdered in pogroms by the Ukrainians belongs in cloud-cuckoo land.

Again – for a sensible conversation you would have to move your arguments somewhat closer to the real world.

Tim Lever
Tim Lever
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Well said Liam, this perspective is rarely heard here in the West, but is actually a truer picture of the last 10 years. The delusions of tin pot militarist MPs in the UK is pathetic. Do they seriously believe our Army could last 10 mins against Russia? Medieval religious fanatics soundly defeated us in Afghanistan and Iraq. With the “aid” we have given to the fascists of the Ukraine govt we could have funded nurses pay rises for 58 years!

Muiris de Bhulbh
Muiris de Bhulbh
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Evidence please, Liam
In 1991 All oblasts voted in favour of Ukrainian independence, Luhansk & Donetsk by more than 83%. Ukraine gave up it’s nuclear weapons (the only state ever to do this), in return for territorial integrity.
States only joined NATO because they applied to join, with those closest to Russia most enthusiastic to do so, including more recently those who were heretofore vehemently neutral.
I fully accept that all democracies are imperfect, and often newer democracies are less perfect, but no abuse of Russian speakers justify war with its inevitable accompanying horrors.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

1) 2) The last several Ukrainian presidents have been freely elected, and could have chosen to become part of the Russian near abroad – if they or their population had wanted to. Nguyen Van Thieu and Hamid Karzai were puppets. Zelensky is not.
3) Oh dear, NATO actually said out loud that they were willing to accept Ukraine as a member at some unspecified time in the future? If Ukraine were to ask? Does not sound all that aggressive to me – after allRUasssia could avoid it sikply by giving Ukraine a better offer.
4) That just might have something to do with minority Russian-speakers waging an armed secession against the government with the active help of a foreign power, don’t you think? The situation in the Donbass is neither simple not clear – as is often the case after an empire has broken up – but the story of innocent and powerless Russian-speakers being murdered in pogroms by the Ukrainians belongs in cloud-cuckoo land.

Again – for a sensible conversation you would have to move your arguments somewhat closer to the real world.

Tim Lever
Tim Lever
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Well said Liam, this perspective is rarely heard here in the West, but is actually a truer picture of the last 10 years. The delusions of tin pot militarist MPs in the UK is pathetic. Do they seriously believe our Army could last 10 mins against Russia? Medieval religious fanatics soundly defeated us in Afghanistan and Iraq. With the “aid” we have given to the fascists of the Ukraine govt we could have funded nurses pay rises for 58 years!

Muiris de Bhulbh
Muiris de Bhulbh
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Evidence please, Liam
In 1991 All oblasts voted in favour of Ukrainian independence, Luhansk & Donetsk by more than 83%. Ukraine gave up it’s nuclear weapons (the only state ever to do this), in return for territorial integrity.
States only joined NATO because they applied to join, with those closest to Russia most enthusiastic to do so, including more recently those who were heretofore vehemently neutral.
I fully accept that all democracies are imperfect, and often newer democracies are less perfect, but no abuse of Russian speakers justify war with its inevitable accompanying horrors.

Rupert Steel
Rupert Steel
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Wasn’t that an absolute cracker? Double-cross of the 21st century.

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

How about guaranteeing the territorial integrity of Yugoslavia? Or Czechoslovakia?

Or, conversely, applying the same principles as those countries, how about accepting that the Donbass has no place or reason to be in Ukraine and accepting their independence or at least self government.

Which was the point of the Minsk agreement, that Ukraine and their NATO backers agreed to – and had no intent to honour.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

You forget four events that were game changers:
1. CIA orchestrated coup in 20i4 that ousted a freely elected (pro Russian) leader..
2. The CIA then installed a puppet under the leadership of NATO, a direct threat to Russia.
3. NATO then announced it would accept Ukraine as a member!!
4. The new regime persecuted the minority Russian speaking people in the Donbas for 8 years killing 14,000 there.
If similar events occurred in Canada or Mexico how might the US have reacted do you suppose?

Rupert Steel
Rupert Steel
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Wasn’t that an absolute cracker? Double-cross of the 21st century.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Johnson

How about guaranteeing the territorial integrity of Ukraine in return for Ukraine giving up nuclear weapons?

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Graham

Can you list a few of the agreements that Russia reneged on.. I can’t think of any but I’m sure there must be some? It was NATO’s breaking its “Not an inch futher” undertaking that caused the war and NATO’s breaking the Minsk2 Agreement that caused 90% the bloodshed.. and Russia broke what agreements exactly?

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

“Can you list a few of the agreements that Russia reneged on”
Good question.
Besides, the statements from NATO and Ukrainian leaders make it clear they had no intent to follow the Minsk deal from the very beginning – whatever the Russians are supposed to have done post Minsk had nothing to do with their lack of honour.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Russia guaranted the safety and territorial integrity of Ukraine – in a treaty in writing – when Ukraine renounced nuclear weapons. Russia has very much reneged on that agreement. If you want us so take you seriously you really cannot ‘forget’ details like that.

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

“Can you list a few of the agreements that Russia reneged on”
Good question.
Besides, the statements from NATO and Ukrainian leaders make it clear they had no intent to follow the Minsk deal from the very beginning – whatever the Russians are supposed to have done post Minsk had nothing to do with their lack of honour.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Russia guaranted the safety and territorial integrity of Ukraine – in a treaty in writing – when Ukraine renounced nuclear weapons. Russia has very much reneged on that agreement. If you want us so take you seriously you really cannot ‘forget’ details like that.

Martin Johnson
Martin Johnson
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Graham

That’s pretty funny, after Merkel, Hollande, and Poroshenko have all said they never had any intention of abiding by the Minsk Accords and used them to keep the Russians quiet while they armed Ukraine.
Historically the Russians have honored their treaties, but you need to be careful about the fine print as they will push pretty far. But the fact that they are tough and thorough negotiators is not the same as being dishonest; dishonesty has been more of a Western thing, like no NATO expansion East of the Oder-Neisse line, or the Minsk Accords.

Last edited 1 year ago by Martin Johnson
Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Graham

Can you list a few of the agreements that Russia reneged on.. I can’t think of any but I’m sure there must be some? It was NATO’s breaking its “Not an inch futher” undertaking that caused the war and NATO’s breaking the Minsk2 Agreement that caused 90% the bloodshed.. and Russia broke what agreements exactly?

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Hyperbole simply weakens your argument.

Tom Graham
Tom Graham
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

How about the idea of negotiating with Russia – a country that sees it as a point of honour to violate any agreement it enters into.
Or the hilarious idea that the Russian army could conduct a successful blitzkrieg invasion though Belarus?

Rupert Steel
Rupert Steel
1 year ago
Reply to  twph84xyqf

I’ll do it for you. Currently the Russians have three fronts in their struggle against Ukraine. In the south, they have forces ensuring their retention of Crimea. Without Crimea their ability to project naval power into the Black Sea and thence to the Med collapses. They don’t want that. Then they’ve got their pincer movement around Bahkmut, which if it falls to them, will assist in Russia’s recovery of the Donbas. The Donbas contains energy resources which, if captured and held by Ukraine, will make good the energy supplies to the EU that used to come from Russia. So the EU has a vital interest in the continued free state of Ukraine. But let’s go back to Belarus, from which the buffoon Lukashenko has fled with his family to the UAE. The Belarus military are no help to Russia. During the Russian attempt to seize Kiev, unknown militants in Belarus blew up the railway that was intended to supply that 40km convoy of Russian tanks and armoured vehicles outside Kiev. Allof them subsequently destroyed or captured by Ukraine. Belarus could easily become the next post-Soviet state to turn to the West, and away from Russia. Put these factors together, in particular their huge military investment on other fronts, and the idea of Russia launching another attempted strike through Belarus seems utterly risible.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  twph84xyqf

Because the Russian army has amply shown itself to be crap at mounting offences.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  twph84xyqf

No word from Sam.. maybe he reread the piece and changed his mind? Or maybe he’s one of the gung-ho types who thinks Ukraine will retake all of it’s former territory, including Crimea.. Maybe he’s hoping for a full scale invasion of Russia?

Rupert Steel
Rupert Steel
1 year ago
Reply to  twph84xyqf

I’ll do it for you. Currently the Russians have three fronts in their struggle against Ukraine. In the south, they have forces ensuring their retention of Crimea. Without Crimea their ability to project naval power into the Black Sea and thence to the Med collapses. They don’t want that. Then they’ve got their pincer movement around Bahkmut, which if it falls to them, will assist in Russia’s recovery of the Donbas. The Donbas contains energy resources which, if captured and held by Ukraine, will make good the energy supplies to the EU that used to come from Russia. So the EU has a vital interest in the continued free state of Ukraine. But let’s go back to Belarus, from which the buffoon Lukashenko has fled with his family to the UAE. The Belarus military are no help to Russia. During the Russian attempt to seize Kiev, unknown militants in Belarus blew up the railway that was intended to supply that 40km convoy of Russian tanks and armoured vehicles outside Kiev. Allof them subsequently destroyed or captured by Ukraine. Belarus could easily become the next post-Soviet state to turn to the West, and away from Russia. Put these factors together, in particular their huge military investment on other fronts, and the idea of Russia launching another attempted strike through Belarus seems utterly risible.

Richard Craven
Richard Craven
1 year ago
Reply to  twph84xyqf

Because the Russian army has amply shown itself to be crap at mounting offences.

twph84xyqf
twph84xyqf
1 year ago

Care to elaborate, wise master?

Sam Charles Norton
Sam Charles Norton
1 year ago

This is the most bonkers article I’ve ever read on Unherd! Totally detached from reality.

Egbert Heslinga
Egbert Heslinga
1 year ago

Putin has such a list of broken agreements on his conto – why on earth think that ‘peace’ now would mean anything else than a breather for Putin and a chance to try again later? Makes no sense at.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

The broken promise (Minsk2) was by NATO to Russia, openly stated to give Ukraine a chance to build up it’s armed forces.. Putin doesn’t really need a ‘breather’.. it’s NATO and Ukraine that needs the breather! By their own admission, the UK has enough ammunition for 1 day of full scale war! German says it has 2 days supply. Ukraine is running out rapidly. Russia seems to have endless supplies. Russia has a standing army of Ÿ million..

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

There are no broken promises of codified agreements. Please point to where it states this?
It’s a mythology pedalled by the Kremlin about some secret agreement in 91. NATO’s always had an open door policy. Doesn’t mean you get admitted, but there is no agreement with Russia.
Minsk agreement has no reference to NATO, and it’s the Russian’s who broke it by invading other parts of Ukraine.
I think this shows how persuasive some elements of the counter information strategy of the FBS have been in certain quarters that don’t check it out first.
As regards military kit and ammunition – there is no doubt this is forcing western countries to crank up production as stocks run down. Probably needs to go faster and quicker. Pentagon and Congress recently relaxed procurement rules to enable more immediate contracting with defence industries for this reason. Fact is the West could, if it needs, really accelerate. (Many will remember the liberty ships challenge from WW2 that shows what we can do when necessary. That ability in extremis will not have entirely disappeared).
Whereas the Russian military provision is a shambles. They’ve much bigger problems hence taking from likes of Iran. And what’s more Russia usually been a key supplier Iran, China and India. So they will all be feeling it.
We can tend to focus on our own deficiencies and forget others have them too, if not more.

Ri Bradach
Ri Bradach
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

J Watson, be careful, that’s dangerously close to a reasoned argument based upon actual facts. That’s hate speech by definition.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

‘It’s a mythology pedalled by the Kremlin about some secret agreement in 91’:
I dispute that:
https://news.antiwar.com/2022/02/21/uncovered-document-reveals-soviet-union-was-promised-no-nato-expansion-at-end-of-cold-war/
Also on nato expansion:
Quote:
It was predictable that NATO, a principal instrument of U.S. foreign policy in Europe throughout the cold war, would become the subject of debate in the wake of the demise of the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact. Not surprisingly, questions have been raised about the need for NATO’s continued existence, the proper balance between European and American contributions, and both the desirability and feasibility of adopting new missions for NATO, from peacemaking inside Europe to warfighting outside. What was less predictable, however, was that the most intense and prolonged debate would be over NATO’s size. One reason such a debate was not predicted is that it was anything but inevitable. To the contrary, the first principal initiative of the Clinton administration toward Europe was the Partnership for Peace, an attempt to develop relationships with and strengthen the states of the former Soviet Union and Warsaw Pact. States were offered a menu of potential political and military arrangements, including regular consultations, educational opportunities, and extensive training and exercising. The intention was to professionalize and Westernize their military establishments while offering these countries a degree of reassurance—and doing all this in a manner designed to reduce the chance of a hostile Russian reaction.

Yet less than one year after launching the Partnership for Peace, the Clinton administration, with little debate or public preparation, introduced the goal of NATO expansion.

Source: https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.brookings.edu/research/enlarging-nato-a-questionable-idea-whose-time-has-come/%3famp

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

A wee bit economical with the facts there I fear..
1. The agreement by NATO to advance no further East was in return for not contesting a unified Germany. That is accepted on all sides.. it is not Kremlin misinformation.
2. The Minsk Accord was about protecting minority rights (et al) which Ukraine breached at will, killing 14,000 in the Donbas since 2014 using their N€zi Azov battalion. The guarantors Germany and France stood idly by and stated openly this year that they had no intention of upholding that solemn agreement. It was merely a ploy to buy time for Ukraine to build up its military. So Minsk was already in tatters long before Russia invaded.
3. As fast as the US can manufacture weapons Russia can match them.. and the latter do not have the massive logistical problems of getting those heavy and highly sophisticated weapons half way around the globe not to mention the massive follow up and training etc. required to make the damn things work.
3A. Besides, the US needs all its weapons for the upcoming US-China war which is in the advanced stages of preparation by the US. Again they will need to get all that kit all the way across the Pacific to their newly opened bases in the Philippines etc. In short the US is going to need a shed load of kit and a supply line and back-up the like of which has never been seen in history. Btw it seems China has more submarines than the US so I’m not sure if the US can carry it off. 4. Remember they had their asses kicked by the Vietnamese and Afghans (hardly in the top league?) at enormous economic cost (the US is broke now) so I can’t see them taking on China unless they first “terminate operations” in Ukraine.. but what do I know?
5. You think the Russia military provision is in a shambles? if that is so why are they “wasting” thousands of expensive cruise missiles every month, ie if they cannot replenish them?
6. And your point that Russia usually supplies weapons to Iran, China and India means they surely have the capacity to produce vast quantities of weapons: and it’s hardly unusual for different weapons to be exported to AND imported from the same country depending on different needs.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

You will appreciate this one Mr Mahony, massive massive development breaking being kept on dl, pulitzer prize winning journalist, sounds very legit:

https://seymourhersh.substack.com/p/how-america-took-out-the-nord-stream

https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/china-demands-us-explain-itself-world-over-nord-stream-attack-story

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

It is certainly not impossible, but it would require some convincing evidence, clearly presented. To a quick surf, what we get is a long and gripping story, not evidence. And Seymour Hersh, on both is record and his prose, is a lifelong enemy of all US foreign policy. His first scoops (My Lai, the bombing of Cambodia) were real and important. Later efforts, Osama Bin Laden and Syrian nerve gas, looked more like mischief-making. This one?

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

He is 85. He is considered one of the world’s most respected investigative journalists. He has a pulitzer prize. This story is being talked about as one of the most significant geopolitical stories for years. Here he explains why he had to use substack:

I won a Pulitzer Prize for international reporting for that work, but getting it before the American public was no easy task. I wasn’t an established journalist working for an established outfit. My first story, published under a barely existent wire service run by a friend of mine, was initially rejected by the editors at Life and Look magazines. When the Washington Post finally published it, they littered it with Pentagon denials and the unthinking skepticism of the rewrite man……………..
What you’ll find here is, I hope, a reflection of that freedom. The story you will read today is the truth as I worked for three months to find, with no pressure from a publisher, editors or peers to make it hew to certain lines of thought—or pare it back to assuage their fears. Substack simply means reporting is back . . . unfiltered and unprogrammed—just the way I like it

https://seymourhersh.substack.com/p/why-substack

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

There are two ways you could see this. One is that of a man with a lifelong commitment to finding out and telling the truth and good sources, who is yet again revealing something the US establishment would prefer to keep hidden. The other is that of a man with a lifelong commitment to exposing the US government as the evil liars he *knows* they are (and who could blame him, considering he did his first work on My Lai and the Cambodia bombings), and who would be a natural conduit for anyone with an antiamerican story they wanted out. Whatever he is, he is certainly not neutral; I would count on him to tell the most anti-american story he can justify in any circumstances. He might well be right – it is a plausible explanation – but that is all to prove. I would not dream of taking his word for something with this many consequences.

Last edited 1 year ago by Rasmus Fogh
B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

The potential consequences of this are blowing my mind.
I don’t think he would risk, at 85, a pretty damn good reputation built over a lifetime, over a fallacy. Especially with something that has consequences like this could have.
Look a spy balloon!!
This is potentially a massive f*ck up on americas part. Again.

Last edited 1 year ago by B Emery
B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Sorry. So funny though. We have now upgraded from balloons to full blown UFOs. America are panicking. Funny how those aliens only show up over the us. Alien spy balloons are a psyop too far America. Just hold your hands up, sack your president and forget decoupling and ww3. How does that sound.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Sorry. So funny though. We have now upgraded from balloons to full blown UFOs. America are panicking. Funny how those aliens only show up over the us. Alien spy balloons are a psyop too far America. Just hold your hands up, sack your president and forget decoupling and ww3. How does that sound.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

The potential consequences of this are blowing my mind.
I don’t think he would risk, at 85, a pretty damn good reputation built over a lifetime, over a fallacy. Especially with something that has consequences like this could have.
Look a spy balloon!!
This is potentially a massive f*ck up on americas part. Again.

Last edited 1 year ago by B Emery
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

There are two ways you could see this. One is that of a man with a lifelong commitment to finding out and telling the truth and good sources, who is yet again revealing something the US establishment would prefer to keep hidden. The other is that of a man with a lifelong commitment to exposing the US government as the evil liars he *knows* they are (and who could blame him, considering he did his first work on My Lai and the Cambodia bombings), and who would be a natural conduit for anyone with an antiamerican story they wanted out. Whatever he is, he is certainly not neutral; I would count on him to tell the most anti-american story he can justify in any circumstances. He might well be right – it is a plausible explanation – but that is all to prove. I would not dream of taking his word for something with this many consequences.

Last edited 1 year ago by Rasmus Fogh
B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

He is 85. He is considered one of the world’s most respected investigative journalists. He has a pulitzer prize. This story is being talked about as one of the most significant geopolitical stories for years. Here he explains why he had to use substack:

I won a Pulitzer Prize for international reporting for that work, but getting it before the American public was no easy task. I wasn’t an established journalist working for an established outfit. My first story, published under a barely existent wire service run by a friend of mine, was initially rejected by the editors at Life and Look magazines. When the Washington Post finally published it, they littered it with Pentagon denials and the unthinking skepticism of the rewrite man……………..
What you’ll find here is, I hope, a reflection of that freedom. The story you will read today is the truth as I worked for three months to find, with no pressure from a publisher, editors or peers to make it hew to certain lines of thought—or pare it back to assuage their fears. Substack simply means reporting is back . . . unfiltered and unprogrammed—just the way I like it

https://seymourhersh.substack.com/p/why-substack

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

It is certainly not impossible, but it would require some convincing evidence, clearly presented. To a quick surf, what we get is a long and gripping story, not evidence. And Seymour Hersh, on both is record and his prose, is a lifelong enemy of all US foreign policy. His first scoops (My Lai, the bombing of Cambodia) were real and important. Later efforts, Osama Bin Laden and Syrian nerve gas, looked more like mischief-making. This one?

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

You will appreciate this one Mr Mahony, massive massive development breaking being kept on dl, pulitzer prize winning journalist, sounds very legit:

https://seymourhersh.substack.com/p/how-america-took-out-the-nord-stream

https://www.zerohedge.com/geopolitical/china-demands-us-explain-itself-world-over-nord-stream-attack-story

Ri Bradach
Ri Bradach
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

J Watson, be careful, that’s dangerously close to a reasoned argument based upon actual facts. That’s hate speech by definition.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

‘It’s a mythology pedalled by the Kremlin about some secret agreement in 91’:
I dispute that:
https://news.antiwar.com/2022/02/21/uncovered-document-reveals-soviet-union-was-promised-no-nato-expansion-at-end-of-cold-war/
Also on nato expansion:
Quote:
It was predictable that NATO, a principal instrument of U.S. foreign policy in Europe throughout the cold war, would become the subject of debate in the wake of the demise of the Soviet Union and the Warsaw Pact. Not surprisingly, questions have been raised about the need for NATO’s continued existence, the proper balance between European and American contributions, and both the desirability and feasibility of adopting new missions for NATO, from peacemaking inside Europe to warfighting outside. What was less predictable, however, was that the most intense and prolonged debate would be over NATO’s size. One reason such a debate was not predicted is that it was anything but inevitable. To the contrary, the first principal initiative of the Clinton administration toward Europe was the Partnership for Peace, an attempt to develop relationships with and strengthen the states of the former Soviet Union and Warsaw Pact. States were offered a menu of potential political and military arrangements, including regular consultations, educational opportunities, and extensive training and exercising. The intention was to professionalize and Westernize their military establishments while offering these countries a degree of reassurance—and doing all this in a manner designed to reduce the chance of a hostile Russian reaction.

Yet less than one year after launching the Partnership for Peace, the Clinton administration, with little debate or public preparation, introduced the goal of NATO expansion.

Source: https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.brookings.edu/research/enlarging-nato-a-questionable-idea-whose-time-has-come/%3famp

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

A wee bit economical with the facts there I fear..
1. The agreement by NATO to advance no further East was in return for not contesting a unified Germany. That is accepted on all sides.. it is not Kremlin misinformation.
2. The Minsk Accord was about protecting minority rights (et al) which Ukraine breached at will, killing 14,000 in the Donbas since 2014 using their N€zi Azov battalion. The guarantors Germany and France stood idly by and stated openly this year that they had no intention of upholding that solemn agreement. It was merely a ploy to buy time for Ukraine to build up its military. So Minsk was already in tatters long before Russia invaded.
3. As fast as the US can manufacture weapons Russia can match them.. and the latter do not have the massive logistical problems of getting those heavy and highly sophisticated weapons half way around the globe not to mention the massive follow up and training etc. required to make the damn things work.
3A. Besides, the US needs all its weapons for the upcoming US-China war which is in the advanced stages of preparation by the US. Again they will need to get all that kit all the way across the Pacific to their newly opened bases in the Philippines etc. In short the US is going to need a shed load of kit and a supply line and back-up the like of which has never been seen in history. Btw it seems China has more submarines than the US so I’m not sure if the US can carry it off. 4. Remember they had their asses kicked by the Vietnamese and Afghans (hardly in the top league?) at enormous economic cost (the US is broke now) so I can’t see them taking on China unless they first “terminate operations” in Ukraine.. but what do I know?
5. You think the Russia military provision is in a shambles? if that is so why are they “wasting” thousands of expensive cruise missiles every month, ie if they cannot replenish them?
6. And your point that Russia usually supplies weapons to Iran, China and India means they surely have the capacity to produce vast quantities of weapons: and it’s hardly unusual for different weapons to be exported to AND imported from the same country depending on different needs.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

The broken promise was crossing an international border, set up since 1991, and guaranteed by treaty.
Donbassers could have lobbied the govt in Kyiv precisely the way they did on Maidan, before Yanukovich started killing people.
Equally, Putin’s seizure of Crimea was totally unjustified. And unless you think the US was going to risk nuclear war, there was zero chance NATO was going to take over the largest Russian naval base, a base legally legally leased to Russia.
Putin’s greed and paranoia brought us here.
He thinks the West will do what he would if he had our power.
It just shows how naive KGB agents really were.

Last edited 1 year ago by martin logan
Diane Merriam
Diane Merriam
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

So in 3 days Ukraine is going to run out of ammo? No? Then what? Does it magically appear on the battlefield?
Putin needed time to make at least a half assed attempt to train up his new Mobiks. So half were sent untrained to plug up holes and half got a few months training in Belarus, from trainers that had never fought in a war.
Any army will take any breather it can get once they’ve taken enough to need to solidify its new lines. If it weren’t for that, Russia would have lost more of Luhansk. As it is, they were driven out of Kharkiv oblast and a lot of the Kherson oblast. Almost half the territory that Russia took at one time or another during this second invasion has been retaken by Ukraine. But I’m sure that was all good will gestures, not that Russia was unable to hold them.
Prigozhen has quit recruiting in prisons. He found that people who were civilian criminals, for some strange reason, stayed criminals even in his ruthless army. But the regular Russian army has started recruiting from prisons. You’d think someone would learn.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Diane Merriam

Indeed. The Russians need only have looked at GB’s recruitment of similar criminals to fight the Irish rebels after 1916, technically the “Auxiliaries” but better known as the “Black and Tans”. The regular British army* had an impossible job trying to keep those brutes in check as they ran amok murdering and burning at a whim. I agree, it’s far better to have a disciplined army of human beings.
* My father, 5 years old at the time owed his life to such an event. Without the courageous intervention of a regular British trooper he would have been toast, literally!
Many armies suffer defeats in battle and engage in strategic withdrawals, not least the British army in North Africa in WW2 but go on to win in the end. I wouldn’t bet against a Russian victory (or more accurately Ukrainian exhaustion) if I were you. The US is broke and wants out of there ASAP.. it needs all it’s weapons to fight the upcoming war against China!
GB has enough ammunition to fight one day in a FULL SCALE war against Russia or China (not the skirmish in Ukraine). No one is saying the 14 tanks going to Ukraine is GBs full compliment fgs!

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Are you really going to use something that happened in 1916 against us? And as something that the Russians have drawn on for modern battle tactics?

Kate Heusser
Kate Heusser
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

He always does.

Kate Heusser
Kate Heusser
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

He always does.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Are you really going to use something that happened in 1916 against us? And as something that the Russians have drawn on for modern battle tactics?

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Diane Merriam

Indeed. The Russians need only have looked at GB’s recruitment of similar criminals to fight the Irish rebels after 1916, technically the “Auxiliaries” but better known as the “Black and Tans”. The regular British army* had an impossible job trying to keep those brutes in check as they ran amok murdering and burning at a whim. I agree, it’s far better to have a disciplined army of human beings.
* My father, 5 years old at the time owed his life to such an event. Without the courageous intervention of a regular British trooper he would have been toast, literally!
Many armies suffer defeats in battle and engage in strategic withdrawals, not least the British army in North Africa in WW2 but go on to win in the end. I wouldn’t bet against a Russian victory (or more accurately Ukrainian exhaustion) if I were you. The US is broke and wants out of there ASAP.. it needs all it’s weapons to fight the upcoming war against China!
GB has enough ammunition to fight one day in a FULL SCALE war against Russia or China (not the skirmish in Ukraine). No one is saying the 14 tanks going to Ukraine is GBs full compliment fgs!

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

There are no broken promises of codified agreements. Please point to where it states this?
It’s a mythology pedalled by the Kremlin about some secret agreement in 91. NATO’s always had an open door policy. Doesn’t mean you get admitted, but there is no agreement with Russia.
Minsk agreement has no reference to NATO, and it’s the Russian’s who broke it by invading other parts of Ukraine.
I think this shows how persuasive some elements of the counter information strategy of the FBS have been in certain quarters that don’t check it out first.
As regards military kit and ammunition – there is no doubt this is forcing western countries to crank up production as stocks run down. Probably needs to go faster and quicker. Pentagon and Congress recently relaxed procurement rules to enable more immediate contracting with defence industries for this reason. Fact is the West could, if it needs, really accelerate. (Many will remember the liberty ships challenge from WW2 that shows what we can do when necessary. That ability in extremis will not have entirely disappeared).
Whereas the Russian military provision is a shambles. They’ve much bigger problems hence taking from likes of Iran. And what’s more Russia usually been a key supplier Iran, China and India. So they will all be feeling it.
We can tend to focus on our own deficiencies and forget others have them too, if not more.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

The broken promise was crossing an international border, set up since 1991, and guaranteed by treaty.
Donbassers could have lobbied the govt in Kyiv precisely the way they did on Maidan, before Yanukovich started killing people.
Equally, Putin’s seizure of Crimea was totally unjustified. And unless you think the US was going to risk nuclear war, there was zero chance NATO was going to take over the largest Russian naval base, a base legally legally leased to Russia.
Putin’s greed and paranoia brought us here.
He thinks the West will do what he would if he had our power.
It just shows how naive KGB agents really were.

Last edited 1 year ago by martin logan
Diane Merriam
Diane Merriam
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

So in 3 days Ukraine is going to run out of ammo? No? Then what? Does it magically appear on the battlefield?
Putin needed time to make at least a half assed attempt to train up his new Mobiks. So half were sent untrained to plug up holes and half got a few months training in Belarus, from trainers that had never fought in a war.
Any army will take any breather it can get once they’ve taken enough to need to solidify its new lines. If it weren’t for that, Russia would have lost more of Luhansk. As it is, they were driven out of Kharkiv oblast and a lot of the Kherson oblast. Almost half the territory that Russia took at one time or another during this second invasion has been retaken by Ukraine. But I’m sure that was all good will gestures, not that Russia was unable to hold them.
Prigozhen has quit recruiting in prisons. He found that people who were civilian criminals, for some strange reason, stayed criminals even in his ruthless army. But the regular Russian army has started recruiting from prisons. You’d think someone would learn.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Will somebody please list Putins broken agreements! I’m not defending the tyrant, merely looking for clarification.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

See my posts above.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

See my posts above.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

The broken promise (Minsk2) was by NATO to Russia, openly stated to give Ukraine a chance to build up it’s armed forces.. Putin doesn’t really need a ‘breather’.. it’s NATO and Ukraine that needs the breather! By their own admission, the UK has enough ammunition for 1 day of full scale war! German says it has 2 days supply. Ukraine is running out rapidly. Russia seems to have endless supplies. Russia has a standing army of Ÿ million..

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Will somebody please list Putins broken agreements! I’m not defending the tyrant, merely looking for clarification.

Egbert Heslinga
Egbert Heslinga
1 year ago

Putin has such a list of broken agreements on his conto – why on earth think that ‘peace’ now would mean anything else than a breather for Putin and a chance to try again later? Makes no sense at.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago

A hare-brained scheme.
The only reason Putin’s failed invasion got as far as it did was because many thought he didn’t intend to invade. No such thinking now.
Any Russian units of considerable size would have to be shipped by rail. Even if they used (inferior) Belarusian armour in-country, there is no way to hide such a large concentration. Western and Ukraine intel would learn about it weeks in advance, and prepare.
So is Luttwak on Ukraine’s side, suggesting a plan that brings fresh disaster to Putin’s cascading failures?
(30 Russian armoured vehicles destroyed just yesterday in Vuhledar, BTW)

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

Regardless of whether the military scheme is practical, it may well be that conceding Luhansk and Donbas is in Ukraine’s best interests if it results in a stable, unified Ukraine without significant Russian separatists and with a pro-Western concensus. Something stable that can be rebuilt without further Russian threats and which will be a reliable Western ally (the last thing the West needs is to be shipping advanced defence kit into a country that might get chunked up again by Russia).
The best outcome here is one where there are no “frozen conflicts” and a stable equilibrium which both sides can live with is reached. At some point, we need to set aside the morality.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

How much of that “advanced defence kit” has already been ‘acquired’ by Sinbad & Co?

And how long before we see it being launched from the M25 in the general direction of Heathrow? Or even Windsor Castle?

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago

Charles, I have absolutely no idea.
But it’s worth remembering one thing about “advanced defence kit” that I’d forgotten and it’s this. It’s useless without training, spares, maintenance and support.
A good case in point is the “flight codes” (software packages) for advanced US military jets like the F35. The US can choose what configuration (and upgrades) a customer will get. And likely also issue time-limited licences for the software.
Once you are off factory support for this sort of stuff, what you have becomes useless. As China is nowe discovering with advanced chip design software (which the US has embargoed).
Then you also have the problem of spare parts and ammunition resupply. You won’t find second sources for these.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

Thank you.
I was really thinking of the cheaper stuff such as the SAM’s, and in particularly the replacement for the ‘Stinger II’, and also something like the rather old but still useful 81mm mortar.

From Heston Services on the M4 both Heathrow and for that matter Twickenham are well within range of an 81mm. “Five rounds fire for effect” than back of up North. (Spotting to be done by mobile phone.)

Kevin Hansen
Kevin Hansen
1 year ago

Why do you assume they would be from ‘up North?’ Surely a group from Luton could just as effectively launch an attack on their local airport from the comfort of their back garden. This would be just as devastating and headline grabbing but would also show them to be a responsible terrorist organisation. No travel equals no carbon footprint. And the authorities would be too busy looking for a Right wing terror group to catch them anyway.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Kevin Hansen

Isn’t Luton “up North”?

Actually ‘they’ are spoilt for choice as you rightly say. It is only a matter of time, unfortunately.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

You say “they”. Does that means you’re not personally involved then Charlie? I’m almost disappointed.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

No, but presumably you are?

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Yes.. working hard towards a peaceful resolution..

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Yes.. working hard towards a peaceful resolution..

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

No, but presumably you are?

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago

The dreaded “Weapons of Aerial Destruction!”
Who do we invade to stop them?

Last edited 1 year ago by martin logan
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

Too late now, sadly.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

Too late now, sadly.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

You say “they”. Does that means you’re not personally involved then Charlie? I’m almost disappointed.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago

The dreaded “Weapons of Aerial Destruction!”
Who do we invade to stop them?

Last edited 1 year ago by martin logan
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Kevin Hansen

Isn’t Luton “up North”?

Actually ‘they’ are spoilt for choice as you rightly say. It is only a matter of time, unfortunately.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Sounds like your plans are well advanced there Charlie..

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Are yours?

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Well under way! Behind the scenes peace negotiations don’t ye know!

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Well under way! Behind the scenes peace negotiations don’t ye know!

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Are yours?

Kevin Hansen
Kevin Hansen
1 year ago

Why do you assume they would be from ‘up North?’ Surely a group from Luton could just as effectively launch an attack on their local airport from the comfort of their back garden. This would be just as devastating and headline grabbing but would also show them to be a responsible terrorist organisation. No travel equals no carbon footprint. And the authorities would be too busy looking for a Right wing terror group to catch them anyway.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Sounds like your plans are well advanced there Charlie..

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

Thank you.
I was really thinking of the cheaper stuff such as the SAM’s, and in particularly the replacement for the ‘Stinger II’, and also something like the rather old but still useful 81mm mortar.

From Heston Services on the M4 both Heathrow and for that matter Twickenham are well within range of an 81mm. “Five rounds fire for effect” than back of up North. (Spotting to be done by mobile phone.)

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago

A transfer to terrorists is as likely as with any other NATO country–except that a nation under existential threat is even less likely to lose it than anyone else.
They like to shoot down Russian helos.

Last edited 1 year ago by martin logan
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

‘Sinbad’ has a LOT of cash and the Ukrainians like the Russians are, as you well know, are notoriously corrupt. 2+2=4.

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

‘Sinbad’ has a LOT of cash and the Ukrainians like the Russians are, as you well know, are notoriously corrupt. 2+2=4.

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Charlie makes s valid point, at last!

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Really? What was that?

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

The level of corruption in Ukraine trumping it’s existential threat. Ukraine is a w***e, a former Russian w***e; now a NATO w***e.. I speak of the leadership of course, not to poor deluded people who are mere pawns in this viscous, satanic, greedy game.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

The level of corruption in Ukraine trumping it’s existential threat. Ukraine is a w***e, a former Russian w***e; now a NATO w***e.. I speak of the leadership of course, not to poor deluded people who are mere pawns in this viscous, satanic, greedy game.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Really? What was that?

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago

Charles, I have absolutely no idea.
But it’s worth remembering one thing about “advanced defence kit” that I’d forgotten and it’s this. It’s useless without training, spares, maintenance and support.
A good case in point is the “flight codes” (software packages) for advanced US military jets like the F35. The US can choose what configuration (and upgrades) a customer will get. And likely also issue time-limited licences for the software.
Once you are off factory support for this sort of stuff, what you have becomes useless. As China is nowe discovering with advanced chip design software (which the US has embargoed).
Then you also have the problem of spare parts and ammunition resupply. You won’t find second sources for these.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago

A transfer to terrorists is as likely as with any other NATO country–except that a nation under existential threat is even less likely to lose it than anyone else.
They like to shoot down Russian helos.

Last edited 1 year ago by martin logan
Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Charlie makes s valid point, at last!

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

If allowing a people to determine its own borders and elect their own government and decide on their own alliances creates a ‘moral’ problem for you it’s a poor lookout for Scotland and NI then isn’t it?
The whole point of the conflict is that the vast majority of people in the Donbas and Crimea are totally opposed to a corrupt, anti Russian, West leaning Ukraine. They should be allowed to secede, not least because Ukraine used to be what those regions still are. It’s Ukraine minus those regions that has changed thanks to the CIA coup of 2014 and Kyiv caving to NATO’s horrible expansionist policy.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

The FBS couldn’t have put it better.
A free and fair plebiscite might be theoretical option, but not at the end of a gun.
Plus the invasion was about asserting control of the whole of Ukraine, probably via a puppet regime after Zelensky killed. So your contention the current conflict was about Crimea and Donbas not true. It might be more so now and Putin shown how risky it is for Ukraine to accept things as they were..

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Why not check out reliable US reports, eg from Scott Ritter (via George Galloway or other semi-banned news media). Ritter’s credentials are highly reliable.. no need for me to go to Kremlin / FBS sources.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Why not check out reliable US reports, eg from Scott Ritter (via George Galloway or other semi-banned news media). Ritter’s credentials are highly reliable.. no need for me to go to Kremlin / FBS sources.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Come off it Liam, you sound like some ridiculous old Russian/Commie stooge!
Stick to the Kerrygold Republic, you have enough problems there, or so I hear.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Ah yes, the old diversionary ad hominem tactics when you run out of ideas. This old git ain’t fallin’ for that one Charlie!

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Ah yes, the old diversionary ad hominem tactics when you run out of ideas. This old git ain’t fallin’ for that one Charlie!

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

You seem to have forgotten that we are living in a rule of law democratic country and that Scotland already voted to stay in the UK – something both Alec Slamond and Nicola Sturgeon are on record as saying was “a once in a generation” decision. I’d interpret that as meaning at least one more generation of SNP leadership then. If Scotland really wants to be independent (which I frankly doubt when it comes to the crunch).
But that’s all just whataboutery on your part. This is nothing to do with the UK.
Just sort out one awkward detail for me please. If this conflict is “all about freedom for Donbas and Luhansk” (as you claim), then why did the Russians launch their main attack on Kiev ? And what was all the “de-Nazification” stuff (curiously, we don’t hear about that any more – I wonder how it’s going ?) all about ?
Very interested to hear your explanation for that !

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

1. The orders to smash Donbas separatists came from Kyiv, obviously hence the genocidal killing of 14,000 over 8 years since 2014. When you’re lashed by the dragon’s tail you go for the head. Duh..
2. We hear little about the (clearly) N€zi Azov battalion now largely because they were all but annihilated in Mariupol and elsewhere.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

A generation.. one generation reproducing the next. How long before we are sexually mature enough to make a baby? 15 years? possibly even less. Have we forgotten what the word generation means?

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

1. The orders to smash Donbas separatists came from Kyiv, obviously hence the genocidal killing of 14,000 over 8 years since 2014. When you’re lashed by the dragon’s tail you go for the head. Duh..
2. We hear little about the (clearly) N€zi Azov battalion now largely because they were all but annihilated in Mariupol and elsewhere.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

A generation.. one generation reproducing the next. How long before we are sexually mature enough to make a baby? 15 years? possibly even less. Have we forgotten what the word generation means?

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

You just keep repeating Russian propaganda.
Fact is that there was Ukrainian independence referendum in 1991.
Both Donbass and Luhansk voted over 80% to be part of Ukraine.
Even Crimea voted 54% for it.
So there was never majority for for these region to be part of Russia.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

The FBS couldn’t have put it better.
A free and fair plebiscite might be theoretical option, but not at the end of a gun.
Plus the invasion was about asserting control of the whole of Ukraine, probably via a puppet regime after Zelensky killed. So your contention the current conflict was about Crimea and Donbas not true. It might be more so now and Putin shown how risky it is for Ukraine to accept things as they were..

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Come off it Liam, you sound like some ridiculous old Russian/Commie stooge!
Stick to the Kerrygold Republic, you have enough problems there, or so I hear.

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

You seem to have forgotten that we are living in a rule of law democratic country and that Scotland already voted to stay in the UK – something both Alec Slamond and Nicola Sturgeon are on record as saying was “a once in a generation” decision. I’d interpret that as meaning at least one more generation of SNP leadership then. If Scotland really wants to be independent (which I frankly doubt when it comes to the crunch).
But that’s all just whataboutery on your part. This is nothing to do with the UK.
Just sort out one awkward detail for me please. If this conflict is “all about freedom for Donbas and Luhansk” (as you claim), then why did the Russians launch their main attack on Kiev ? And what was all the “de-Nazification” stuff (curiously, we don’t hear about that any more – I wonder how it’s going ?) all about ?
Very interested to hear your explanation for that !

Andrew F
Andrew F
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

You just keep repeating Russian propaganda.
Fact is that there was Ukrainian independence referendum in 1991.
Both Donbass and Luhansk voted over 80% to be part of Ukraine.
Even Crimea voted 54% for it.
So there was never majority for for these region to be part of Russia.

Jeff Watkins
Jeff Watkins
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

This is clearly the most sensible arrangement and an agreement could have been reached last April in Istanbul if the UK and US hadn’t stopped it. There are 8 million ethnic Russians in Eastern Ukraine who don’t want to be part of the new Ukraine. Unfortunately I think Putins next move could be to annex the whole of Eastern Ukraine with the Dnipro as the border. We’ll soon find out over the next couple of weeks as Putins mass invasion takes place.

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeff Watkins

Well, he may have another crack at it. I must say that you seem surprisely certain that he would succeed. He’s not done very well so far.

Mike Wylde
Mike Wylde
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeff Watkins

Has anyone asked those 8 million whether they want to be part of Ukraine or part of Russia? Other than at the wrong end of a Russian gun of course.
And, an annexation of a territory does not have to be accepted by the other side, as has already be proven in Kherson oblast. Putin saying it’s part of Russia doesn’t mean anything at all.

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeff Watkins

Well, he may have another crack at it. I must say that you seem surprisely certain that he would succeed. He’s not done very well so far.

Mike Wylde
Mike Wylde
1 year ago
Reply to  Jeff Watkins

Has anyone asked those 8 million whether they want to be part of Ukraine or part of Russia? Other than at the wrong end of a Russian gun of course.
And, an annexation of a territory does not have to be accepted by the other side, as has already be proven in Kherson oblast. Putin saying it’s part of Russia doesn’t mean anything at all.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

An intelligent solution. But Putin will never allow an independent Ukraine while he lives.
A Ukraine free to join the EU (with ot without NATO) is an existential threat to Putin’s regime. It would very quickly be far more attractive to Russians than his own.
Just as with Venezuela, Iran, and to some extent China, very poor and very ignorant Russians are far easier to rule than well-off Russians.
Indeed, Putin’s ultimate horror is that he might one day actually have to hold a fair election.
And he sees that as a betrayal of Russia’s 800-years history.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

..what planet did you say you’re living in?

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

..what planet did you say you’re living in?

Diane Merriam
Diane Merriam
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

For 20 years, whenever Putin has paused, it’s been just that. A pause. If his lips are moving, he’s lying. Russia will not stop until it is *forced* to stop. He will not “live” with anything.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

How much of that “advanced defence kit” has already been ‘acquired’ by Sinbad & Co?

And how long before we see it being launched from the M25 in the general direction of Heathrow? Or even Windsor Castle?

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

If allowing a people to determine its own borders and elect their own government and decide on their own alliances creates a ‘moral’ problem for you it’s a poor lookout for Scotland and NI then isn’t it?
The whole point of the conflict is that the vast majority of people in the Donbas and Crimea are totally opposed to a corrupt, anti Russian, West leaning Ukraine. They should be allowed to secede, not least because Ukraine used to be what those regions still are. It’s Ukraine minus those regions that has changed thanks to the CIA coup of 2014 and Kyiv caving to NATO’s horrible expansionist policy.

Jeff Watkins
Jeff Watkins
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

This is clearly the most sensible arrangement and an agreement could have been reached last April in Istanbul if the UK and US hadn’t stopped it. There are 8 million ethnic Russians in Eastern Ukraine who don’t want to be part of the new Ukraine. Unfortunately I think Putins next move could be to annex the whole of Eastern Ukraine with the Dnipro as the border. We’ll soon find out over the next couple of weeks as Putins mass invasion takes place.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

An intelligent solution. But Putin will never allow an independent Ukraine while he lives.
A Ukraine free to join the EU (with ot without NATO) is an existential threat to Putin’s regime. It would very quickly be far more attractive to Russians than his own.
Just as with Venezuela, Iran, and to some extent China, very poor and very ignorant Russians are far easier to rule than well-off Russians.
Indeed, Putin’s ultimate horror is that he might one day actually have to hold a fair election.
And he sees that as a betrayal of Russia’s 800-years history.

Diane Merriam
Diane Merriam
1 year ago
Reply to  Peter B

For 20 years, whenever Putin has paused, it’s been just that. A pause. If his lips are moving, he’s lying. Russia will not stop until it is *forced* to stop. He will not “live” with anything.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

I wouldn’t slavishly and gullibly believe all of the West’s propaganda if I were you. We all know reports for both sides need to be taken with a large grain of salt!

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

You’re not balanced though LM. You make a number of apologist arguments for brutal invasion and murder. I don’t say ‘you’ are an apologist as that’s not appropriate but you have pushed such arguments without the countervailing point.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

ACHTUNG : HEALTH WARNING.

He’s an Irish ‘nutter’ of the Communist persuasion, possibly the last of his kind.

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Oh do shut up Charlie.. it is you that is the last of your kind.. still living in the glory days of the long lost empire and deluded on almost every situation with a mindset that belongs in the 19th century.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

Oh do shut up Charlie.. it is you that is the last of your kind.. still living in the glory days of the long lost empire and deluded on almost every situation with a mindset that belongs in the 19th century.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

That is true and I should have been more balanced.. however, when 90% of the assertions on this platform are little more than Western propaganda I remain an almost lone voice in my attempts to create some semblance of balance.
For the record..
I condemn Russian aggression and brutality just as much as I condemn Ukrainian aggression and brutality. My thoughts and prayers are with the people and ordinary soldiers on both sides who are mere pawns in this sick game.
I still contend that the war was caused by NATO expansion and CIA orchestrated coup and failure to uphold Minsk Accord.
What followed was totally predicable, viz…
Immediate annexation of Crimea.
Separatist rebellion in Donbas.
Persecution of the separatists: 14,000 dead.
Support for the separatists.
Invasion of separatist region.
Attack on NATO puppet regime.
Attack on AZOV held Mariupol region.
..and soon to come…
Utter destruction of Ukraine.
All could have been avoided.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

ACHTUNG : HEALTH WARNING.

He’s an Irish ‘nutter’ of the Communist persuasion, possibly the last of his kind.

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

That is true and I should have been more balanced.. however, when 90% of the assertions on this platform are little more than Western propaganda I remain an almost lone voice in my attempts to create some semblance of balance.
For the record..
I condemn Russian aggression and brutality just as much as I condemn Ukrainian aggression and brutality. My thoughts and prayers are with the people and ordinary soldiers on both sides who are mere pawns in this sick game.
I still contend that the war was caused by NATO expansion and CIA orchestrated coup and failure to uphold Minsk Accord.
What followed was totally predicable, viz…
Immediate annexation of Crimea.
Separatist rebellion in Donbas.
Persecution of the separatists: 14,000 dead.
Support for the separatists.
Invasion of separatist region.
Attack on NATO puppet regime.
Attack on AZOV held Mariupol region.
..and soon to come…
Utter destruction of Ukraine.
All could have been avoided.

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

You’re not balanced though LM. You make a number of apologist arguments for brutal invasion and murder. I don’t say ‘you’ are an apologist as that’s not appropriate but you have pushed such arguments without the countervailing point.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

Who’s a sucker for propaganda now? Propaganda comes to us from two directions!

Peter B
Peter B
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

Regardless of whether the military scheme is practical, it may well be that conceding Luhansk and Donbas is in Ukraine’s best interests if it results in a stable, unified Ukraine without significant Russian separatists and with a pro-Western concensus. Something stable that can be rebuilt without further Russian threats and which will be a reliable Western ally (the last thing the West needs is to be shipping advanced defence kit into a country that might get chunked up again by Russia).
The best outcome here is one where there are no “frozen conflicts” and a stable equilibrium which both sides can live with is reached. At some point, we need to set aside the morality.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

I wouldn’t slavishly and gullibly believe all of the West’s propaganda if I were you. We all know reports for both sides need to be taken with a large grain of salt!

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

Who’s a sucker for propaganda now? Propaganda comes to us from two directions!

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago

A hare-brained scheme.
The only reason Putin’s failed invasion got as far as it did was because many thought he didn’t intend to invade. No such thinking now.
Any Russian units of considerable size would have to be shipped by rail. Even if they used (inferior) Belarusian armour in-country, there is no way to hide such a large concentration. Western and Ukraine intel would learn about it weeks in advance, and prepare.
So is Luttwak on Ukraine’s side, suggesting a plan that brings fresh disaster to Putin’s cascading failures?
(30 Russian armoured vehicles destroyed just yesterday in Vuhledar, BTW)

j watson
j watson
1 year ago

Assumes also Lukashenko feels secure enough to acquiesce. Been interesting that to date he’s done v little, and thus suggestive that while he supports his Russian friend he wants to keep a bit of distance.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Have you forgotten the initial attack on Kyiv? All Lukashenko has done is keep his own troops out of the war.. big deal!

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

No evidence they launched from Belarus LM. They certainly had troops stationed there before but I’m fairly certain subsequent fact checking confirmed they didn’t actually launch across border from Belarus territory. There was some misreporting.
Of course being able to concentrate there before invasion may have been of assistance, but probably also informative they didn’t go across the Belarus/Ukraine border and it’s remained like that. Intriguing for sure.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Check your Atlas.. very hard to attack Kyiv from the north, west of the Dnipro river without going through Belarus! ..actually no, not hard: impossible!

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Check your Atlas.. very hard to attack Kyiv from the north, west of the Dnipro river without going through Belarus! ..actually no, not hard: impossible!

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

He allowed that when he thought Putin’s heist would work.
Lukashenka now wishes he could join the other former Soviet republics and be rid of Russia.
Indeed, he now probably wishes he could set up the Belarusian equivalent of Kazakstan’s “Tents of Invincibility” in Kyiv.
Nobody wants to side with a loser.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

Then he’ll remain a fervent supporter of Russia, as he has always been. He’s even sicker than Zelenskyy!

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

Then he’ll remain a fervent supporter of Russia, as he has always been. He’s even sicker than Zelenskyy!

j watson
j watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

No evidence they launched from Belarus LM. They certainly had troops stationed there before but I’m fairly certain subsequent fact checking confirmed they didn’t actually launch across border from Belarus territory. There was some misreporting.
Of course being able to concentrate there before invasion may have been of assistance, but probably also informative they didn’t go across the Belarus/Ukraine border and it’s remained like that. Intriguing for sure.

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

He allowed that when he thought Putin’s heist would work.
Lukashenka now wishes he could join the other former Soviet republics and be rid of Russia.
Indeed, he now probably wishes he could set up the Belarusian equivalent of Kazakstan’s “Tents of Invincibility” in Kyiv.
Nobody wants to side with a loser.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Pretty obvious tactic.. not all that smart really. Behind the scenes he’s in lock-step with Putin. Don’t forget the Kyiv assault came through Belarus. If push comes to shove, like puppet clown Zekenskyy on the other side of this sick game he’ll have no choice but to kowtow!

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Have you forgotten the initial attack on Kyiv? All Lukashenko has done is keep his own troops out of the war.. big deal!

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  j watson

Pretty obvious tactic.. not all that smart really. Behind the scenes he’s in lock-step with Putin. Don’t forget the Kyiv assault came through Belarus. If push comes to shove, like puppet clown Zekenskyy on the other side of this sick game he’ll have no choice but to kowtow!

j watson
j watson
1 year ago

Assumes also Lukashenko feels secure enough to acquiesce. Been interesting that to date he’s done v little, and thus suggestive that while he supports his Russian friend he wants to keep a bit of distance.

AJ Mac
AJ Mac
1 year ago

So the only possible end to the fighting is something Ukraine and most of the US-European alliance (to the extent they are allied) will not accept?
Since he won’t go away and because his own people haven’t the will or wherewithal to de-throne him, the West may indeed have to throw Putin some kind of concessionary bone, a face-saving foothold. But perhaps not one as meaty as this war-games article suggests. That sounds like too much capitulation, especially having come this far. And is anyone persuaded that a thus-indulged Putin will then behave himself, keeping his toes and imperial dreams inside the lines?

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  AJ Mac

I came across these today which were interesting, haven’t read the rand report just scrolled over it, interesting analysis of the different ways the us thinks this might play out, a few extracts:

The RAND Corporation issued a new report that warns against a “protracted conflict” in Ukraine and says a prolonged war is against US interests, breaking from the view of many hawks in Washington that the US should support the fight against Russia for the long term.

RAND is funded directly by the US military and often shapes US policies, including hawkish ones toward Moscow. A 2019 report titled “Extending Russia” examined the risks and benefits of ways the US could try to “extend” Russia, and many of those policies have been implemented, including the provision of “lethal aid” to Ukraine, sanctions on Russia, and “hindering” the country’s gas and oil exports.

When it comes to Ukraine retaking more of the territory that Russia captured, the report says this is only a “less significant benefit” and that “avoiding a long war is also a higher priority for the United States than facilitating significantly more Ukrainian territorial control.” It places “weakening Russia” as a greater benefit to the US than Ukrainian gains, but still not worth the risk of a long war
“The US ability to focus on its other global priorities — particularly, competition with China — will remain constrained as long as the war is absorbing senior policymakers’ time and US military resources,” the report reads.
The conclusion says that due to the political situation in the US, a “dramatic shift” in US policy toward Ukraine is unlikely. But the authors say that “developing these instruments now and socializing them with Ukraine and with US allies might help catalyze the eventual start of a process that could bring this war to a negotiated end in a time frame that would serve US interests.”
Source and full article: https://news.antiwar.com/2023/01/30/new-rand-report-says-a-long-war-in-ukraine-is-against-us-interests/

Link to the RAND report: https://www.rand.org/pubs/perspectives/PEA2510-1.html

martin logan
martin logan
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Indeed, Sun Tzu said a long war never benefited any state.
But a short war that destroyed a state isn’t very good for that state either.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

I suppose it depends if russia gives us a choice. What if they plan it to be a long war?

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Of course they plan it to be a long war. While NATO is weakening Russia (is it though?) Russia is weakening NATO as well. The EU is being ruined (as per US policy, Nordstream2 demonstrating that clearly).
It’s a home game to Russia; its economy is doing okay; Putin has never been more popular.. Ever wonder why Putin didn’t go all out on a full-scale war footing? Ever wonder why he pulled back from Kyiv? Ever wondered why Russia withdraws and gives Ukraine those nice “victories”? Let me put it this way: if Putin wanted a short war he went about it in a very ineffective manner. If, on the other hand he wanted a long, never ending war… well, what might he have done do you suppose? ‘know anything about Russia history? They don’t really do short wars..

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Of course they plan it to be a long war. While NATO is weakening Russia (is it though?) Russia is weakening NATO as well. The EU is being ruined (as per US policy, Nordstream2 demonstrating that clearly).
It’s a home game to Russia; its economy is doing okay; Putin has never been more popular.. Ever wonder why Putin didn’t go all out on a full-scale war footing? Ever wonder why he pulled back from Kyiv? Ever wondered why Russia withdraws and gives Ukraine those nice “victories”? Let me put it this way: if Putin wanted a short war he went about it in a very ineffective manner. If, on the other hand he wanted a long, never ending war… well, what might he have done do you suppose? ‘know anything about Russia history? They don’t really do short wars..

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

The Second Punic War* lasted seventeen years and ended in a comprehensive victory for Rome, despite having to deal with the most outstanding Commander in history, Hannibal Barca.

(*218-201 BC, as we now say.)

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

If it isn’t in us interest to prolong it, that tells me it is in Russias interest to long it out?

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Precisely,

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Aha.. finally someone has twigged! Well done!

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Thank you Mr Mahony, its good to see you are fine form today. I had kind of figured out a long war is possible, just Mr logan and I have been playing at annoying each other for a while (I’ve been enjoying it) to be fair arguably it already is if you count it from 2014.
So, what about this nord stream business then? That could slow the escalation right down. Might even prevent us in Europe getting pulled into a war with China?

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

Thank you Mr Mahony, its good to see you are fine form today. I had kind of figured out a long war is possible, just Mr logan and I have been playing at annoying each other for a while (I’ve been enjoying it) to be fair arguably it already is if you count it from 2014.
So, what about this nord stream business then? That could slow the escalation right down. Might even prevent us in Europe getting pulled into a war with China?

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Precisely,

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Aha.. finally someone has twigged! Well done!

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago

He was outstanding, but better than Alexander?

There are still sons in modern-day Pakistan being named Sikander in his honour.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Yes, Alexander is grossly overrated.

As his uncle Alexander of Epirus said, on hearing of his nephew’s Persian victories, whilst he himself was fighting in Italy,
“Tell Alexander whilst he fights women I fight MEN”!*

(* Aulus Gellius – ‘Attic Nights’.)

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago

I detect more than just a hint of jealousy in his uncle’s remark.
The other point worth noting is that if Alexander (of Macedon) hadn’t succumbed to the fever at such an early age, his legacy may well have been even greater.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

In fact A of E was KIA a few days later!

As Xenophon & Co had proved seventy years before, the Persian Empire had degenerated into a “paper Tiger”, and its destruction was only a matter of time.

Defeating Carthage was a far greater task, as the historical record clearly shows.

Incidentally Alexander’s fever is thought to have been exacerbated by his alcoholism! Had he lived he may well have come to grief in Italy, just like his Uncle.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago

He may well have “withered on the vine”!
Darius III is infamous for his retreat from the battlefield, but it’s arguable that Alexander’s crossing of the Gedrosian desert was just as great a feat as Hannibal’s Alpine crossing. I doubt he’d taken the route south-east as an easier option, rather as a means of settling old scores. We’ll never know, but both he, his uncle and Hannibal are rightly remembered for their exploits.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Not to forget his terrifying father Philip!

It was Livy who used to speculate what would have happened if Rome had clashed with Macedon.

I’m sure you can guess the answer.

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Not to forget his terrifying father Philip!

It was Livy who used to speculate what would have happened if Rome had clashed with Macedon.

I’m sure you can guess the answer.

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago

He may well have “withered on the vine”!
Darius III is infamous for his retreat from the battlefield, but it’s arguable that Alexander’s crossing of the Gedrosian desert was just as great a feat as Hannibal’s Alpine crossing. I doubt he’d taken the route south-east as an easier option, rather as a means of settling old scores. We’ll never know, but both he, his uncle and Hannibal are rightly remembered for their exploits.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

In fact A of E was KIA a few days later!

As Xenophon & Co had proved seventy years before, the Persian Empire had degenerated into a “paper Tiger”, and its destruction was only a matter of time.

Defeating Carthage was a far greater task, as the historical record clearly shows.

Incidentally Alexander’s fever is thought to have been exacerbated by his alcoholism! Had he lived he may well have come to grief in Italy, just like his Uncle.

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago

I detect more than just a hint of jealousy in his uncle’s remark.
The other point worth noting is that if Alexander (of Macedon) hadn’t succumbed to the fever at such an early age, his legacy may well have been even greater.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

I doubt that! Alexander was the original “Great Satan”..one of his first acts upon “liberating” a Greek occupied city was to murder all of it’s inhabitants.
Apparently they weren’t quite Greek enough!

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

Yes, Alexander is grossly overrated.

As his uncle Alexander of Epirus said, on hearing of his nephew’s Persian victories, whilst he himself was fighting in Italy,
“Tell Alexander whilst he fights women I fight MEN”!*

(* Aulus Gellius – ‘Attic Nights’.)

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Murray

I doubt that! Alexander was the original “Great Satan”..one of his first acts upon “liberating” a Greek occupied city was to murder all of it’s inhabitants.
Apparently they weren’t quite Greek enough!

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

…We now say BCE Charlie, not BC. Try and get up to date will you. 201 BCE was a long time ago.. even the weapons were different!

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

How very odd, particularly as the Ancient Greeks (Hellenes) did NOT regard the Macedonians as Greek at all.

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

As far as I am concerned Liam old chap, 201BC is in fact 308 AUC.

Thus today it is NOT 2023 AD but rather 2532 AUC.

ps. How is Lusitania?

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

How very odd, particularly as the Ancient Greeks (Hellenes) did NOT regard the Macedonians as Greek at all.

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Liam O'Mahony

As far as I am concerned Liam old chap, 201BC is in fact 308 AUC.

Thus today it is NOT 2023 AD but rather 2532 AUC.

ps. How is Lusitania?

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

If it isn’t in us interest to prolong it, that tells me it is in Russias interest to long it out?

Steve Murray
Steve Murray
1 year ago

He was outstanding, but better than Alexander?

There are still sons in modern-day Pakistan being named Sikander in his honour.

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago

…We now say BCE Charlie, not BC. Try and get up to date will you. 201 BCE was a long time ago.. even the weapons were different!

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

If you mean Ukraine as “that state” then I have to tell you no one (with the exception of myself and the ordinary people of Ukraine) gives a flying f..k about that unfortunate state! It and it’s 37m people are nothing but meat grinder material and cannon fodder in this sick, satanic game of thrones.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

I suppose it depends if russia gives us a choice. What if they plan it to be a long war?

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

The Second Punic War* lasted seventeen years and ended in a comprehensive victory for Rome, despite having to deal with the most outstanding Commander in history, Hannibal Barca.

(*218-201 BC, as we now say.)

Liam O'Mahony
Liam O'Mahony
1 year ago
Reply to  martin logan

If you mean Ukraine as “that state” then I have to tell you no one (with the exception of myself and the ordinary people of Ukraine) gives a flying f..k about that unfortunate state! It and it’s 37m people are nothing but meat grinder material and cannon fodder in this sick, satanic game of thrones.

AJ Mac
AJ Mac
1 year ago