He talks fast.
He’s fairly confident that Russia is in trouble and has failed in their major objectives, but he doesn’t say much about air power, and that seems to be Russia’s primary strength right now. You can’t take territory with planes, but you can effectively disrupt coordinated Ukrainian responses.
I have no idea what’s going to happen. The YouTuber seems pretty casual about the possibility of Putin using nukes, which is a scary (but unlikely? I hope?) possibility. All bets are off if Putin pushes the big red button, and hello WWIII.
Meanwhile, in the U.S. and elsewhere, the Shell Corporation is finding, “it difficult to divest” from Putin’s pipelines and oil infrastructure because, you know, $19.3 billion in profits is just not enough. My goodness, no!
The song goes like this, “oil profits war profits oil profits war!” in iambic pentameter… or is that hexameter? IDK, it’s rap.
Let’s make it a wrap. Be done with all the OIL-igarchs and their insatiable greed for a change.
BP, $13 billion, Chevron $15.6 billion, Exxon $23 billion…
But, they can’t afford to adjust gas prices to reflect the true costs of pollution, exploitation, and war.
No. They ‘need’ another subsidy!
Oh, look! It’s the GOP to the rescue!
“Oil profits war profits oil profits war! Oil profits war profits oil profits war!”
interview on Colbert
from the very first day of the war but interesting I reckon
Excluding the promotion at the start, it’s only eight minutes of talking.
I like Adam Something, but I feel strongly disinclined to watch this video of his. Between the pro-Russian and pro-Ukrainian propaganda, I think the former has shown itself to be completely untrustworthy, but the latter no doubt is playing fast and loose with the truth too, although I am inclined to believe that side of the debate much more.
I think the real-ish take of events will only be possible years after the fact, maybe months in the modern information era. And any optimism is not warranted.
A subjective observation – I hear now military jets overhead daily. The last time that was happening with this frequency was in my childhood during the cold war. It might of course be just a fluke and that I am now more on alert to such things than before, but even that is a bad thing. And I live on the border with Germany, as far from the conflict as one can be and still be in the Czech Republic.
Repost from the Infinite thread yesterday This is taken from Lynna 375, Mark Sumner.
The point here is that the fact that Russia is going slow is not necessarily a good sign. That could be part of their tactics.
This seems to be the usual Russian tactic.
Go slow with the vehicles and tanks. In front of the army and tanks, use artillery, missiles, air power, and drones to pound the cities to rubble, kill a lot of civilians, and have the rest of the civilians flee as refugees.
It’s basically brute force, brutal, and cruel.
It also can work. The Chechen capital Grozny was more or less leveled to rubble and around 20% of the civilian population ended up dead in the two wars.
Putin will have to do something similar to “win” in Ukraine. What he will win is a modern nation that has been reduced to something like Syria or Chechnya.
Of course, Putin and the Russians aren’t paying the price, Ukraine is.
Then again, Putin/Russia has never faced an enemy that actually has the ability to fight back. The Chechens and Syrian rebels weren’t all that well armed or trained, didn’t have air power or drones, and a superpower to resupply them.
As I mentioned before, Ukraine traded 5,000 nuclear weapons for a security guarantee from the USA, UK, and Russia in 1994.
And look at how well that worked out.
To be fair, the USA and UK did not attack Ukraine and try to take it over.
Russia is now just completely ignoring the agreement they made.
It is also ironic that Putin/Russia is forcing everyone to join the EU and NATO as soon as they can.
I read an interview with a leader of one of the Baltic states about why they joined NATO. They said they had the best of reasons. No one wanted to hear a knock on the door at 2:00 AM, followed by a trip to Siberia, and no one ever hears from them again.
(Something that also happened to a friend of mine’s father after WW II. They never saw their father again.)
@3. chrislawson : “Excluding the promotion at the start, it’s only eight minutes of talking.”
So? Is that a bad thing or a good thing or just what it is?
@5. raven : Pretty sure the Chechens did fight back and do a lot of damage. Russia made them suffer horrifically for it and killed so many thousands of them but didn’t they pretty much sustain a separate Chechnya for a number of years before Russia finally resorted to leveling Grozy (& maybe much of the rest of Chechnya and neighbouring ..was it Dagestan?) in a rather phyrric :”victory”?
Yeah on kinda a Colbert binge here but
Fiona Hill interviewed on Putin here noting among other things, seems Putin’s literally short-sighted.
PS. Triple asterisks don’t appear? Not in preview?
Yeah, they did fight back.
And they did well with what they had which wasn’t much.
They still lost though.
The Russians used brute force and atrocities to win. Grozny was destroyed and around 20% of the population ended up dead. This was 200,000 people.
If 20% of the Ukrainian population is killed, we are looking at 8.8 million dead people.
I’ll add here that historically in wars, most of the casualties ended up being civilians. They died from hunger as their food supplies were disrupted, lack of clean water, lack of medical care, lack of shelter from the cold and rain, and infectious diseases that swept through a weakened population.
Once the power goes off in Ukraine, there goes your hospital ICUs, supermarkets, water treatment plant, and the rest of what we consider a modern nation.
I don’t know if this is a glimmer of hope, more game playing or a sign it isn’t going as well for the Russians
“Russia has said that it can stop operations at “any moment” if Ukraine meets Russian conditions.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov says Ukraine must recognise Crimea as Russian, and Donetsk and Luhansk as independent states.
In addition to this, Peskov says Ukraine must amend its constitution and reject claims to enter any bloc (like Nato, for example).
He adds that Russia will finish the “demilitarisation” of Ukraine, and if these conditions are met Russian military action will “stop in a moment”.
The Kremlin spokesman insists that Russia is not seeking to make any further territorial claims on Ukraine.”
Re nukes, and politics aside, I’m quite glad Jeremy Corbyn wasn’t able to implement his “Ill keep our nukes, but promise not to use them” policy.
Who said WW3 has to be fought with nuclear weapons.
I think this IS WW3, Historians just haven’t got around to giving it a start date yet. Hindsight will pick a date for us. WW2 was 10 or more years in the making as was WW1. Putin has been leading to this his whole dictatorship. Ukraine isn’t his first rodeo. . Meanwhile Putin (FUCKPUTIN) is in a no win situation. Dropping little niceties like “if the world can’t have Russia in it, what’s the point of having a world” doesn’t make me feel confident he wont end up like a cornered animal and thrash out at it’s own expense. The only offramp here is Putin is removed from power, preferably by being shot.
Cristian Eigel says
Well, there are movies with helicopters flying low which exposes them to attacks from ground forces. That’s a sign that higher up is not safe for them. There are also fotos of downed Russian fighter jets, that would not happen if Russia would have air superiority. Other countries send Ukraine jets and drones, so, it’s going to get more difficult to have air superiority.
AdamSomething uses Ukrainian resources for his videos and for the comments in his Community section of his youtube channel. He is using posts of the Ukrainian Military, so if there is disinformation there, then he transmits it. He also wishes Ukraine to win this war and for Russia to incur many loses (as most of us probably do), so there is some bias there.
I wish there would be experts commenting about this war, I don’t believe a YouTuber like AdamSomething is an expert in this field, but at this moment we have nothing better…
That wouldn’t be a problem.
Crimea is lost and Ukraine isn’t going to try to get it back.
Crimea is historically Russian and was transferred to Ukraine by Krushchev, for unknown reasons but likely because Krushchev was…Ukrainian. I suspect if Russia had asked nicely, Ukraine would have just given it back.
Those two provinces, Donetsk and Luhansk are also lost and are creating far more problems than they are worth. I would guess Ukraine would give them to Russia as a bribe to go away and leave them alone.
I wouldn’t trust the Russian very far though.
They have a history of breaking whatever agreements they make.
In 1994 they guaranteed the security of Ukraine and look at how well that worked out for them.
My preferred offramp is him being defenestrated.
Rob Grigjanis says
Bloody fucking hell. NATO should warn Putin that if he keeps targeting civilians they will step in.
Lack of trust notwithstanding, I’d go for that.
Some ambiguity as to what he means by demilitarisation too.
If by ‘defenestrated’ you mean thrown out a window, I’m good with that. I’m sure there are tall buildings in Moscow. If you mean, removed form power, then no. People removed from power have a habit of coming back or trying to, Sound familiar. Sycophants have a habit of fawning over their return to power and it can and does happen. Sound similar to anything we know of?
One execution is acceptable here because we are already saying it is preferable to allow 10,000, 20,000 maybe more, people to die rather than put forces into Ukraine and or establish a no fly zone. That’s ok it seems.
It appears that it was a semi-serious joke about karmic justice based on the fact that many of Putin’s enemies have “accidentally” fallen out of windows in the last few years.
Rob Grigjanis says
Volodya delenda est
AFAICT, 10,000 or 20,000 civilian deaths are way too low an estimate. It is more likely to be in the hundreds of thousands or millions of dead Ukrainians.
Chechnya was 20% of the population, 200,000 dead.
Syria is 350,000 dead and 13 million refugees.
Bosnia 100,000 dead out of a population of 3.3 million, 2 million refugees.
Ukraine has 44 million people.
One thing we’ve learned is that our modern Hi Tech civilization is fragile. It doesn’t take much to wreck it.
George Bush almost wrecked the USA with his Great Recession and he wasn’t even trying to do so.
Once the power goes off in Ukraine, their housing stock is destroyed in bombed out cities, and millions are displaced as internal and external refugees in camps. people will start dying by the thousands a day. What will happen to old people in long term care facilities or young children when there are no hospitals functioning?
@9 ajbjasus: It’s word games. It’s Russia saying they can leave immediately but leaving themselves a loophole with “demilitarisation”. “demilitarisation” meaning installing a pro-Russian puppet government.
Putin is unstable. He has already justified this invasion based on the echoes going on in his mind. He can easily say the sanctions are in effect an act of war on Russia and it will now retaliate. He can say that NATOs further build up along the flank as a result of immediate instability is in fact an invasion force amassing on his boarders and he must act before they can cross into Russian territory. Putin has no leash holders. He is hyper suspicious of those around him, does not eat or drink at public or state dinners and keeps people at a distance for Covid and or personal security reasons. He has become paranoid and convinced he is a modern Czar saving Russia with the Russian Orthodox Church happily in tow. Fuck churches and fuck Putin and while I at it fuck Trump. WW3 began in the early hours of February 24 2022.
Apparently, Finland is seriously considering applying to join NATO. An article I was reading about it harked back to the Winter War where Finland fought the Soviet Union to a standstill for 105 days and the SU wound up seizing the Karelian Peninsula.
What the article overlooked, but I don’t think the Finns have, is that Finland used to be the Russian Grand Duchy of Finland and Putin keeps talking about recreating the Russian Empire.
(All of this is, of course, why the Baltic States are rather nervous at the moment, as well.)
Finland lost 11% of their territory and the Russians ethnically cleansed Karelia and Finland had to resettle 400,000 people. That is a lot for a population of 3.8 million to absorb.
I don’t see that Russia would dare to attack Finland again.
While Finland isn’t part of NATO, it is part of the West and a lot of countries would jump in on Finland’s side. Including probably the USA.
One way to get Russia to let go of Ukraine would be to attack them somewhere else. They’ve got a long border. We’ve seen enough that the Russian army is quite literally a paper tiger. Most of their military strength seems to exist only on paper.
Doubtful. The line in the sand atm is NATO. I don’t think any NATO country is going to enter a direct confrontation with Russia because of nuclear weapons. If Russia attacks Finland, I think you will see the same scenario as Ukraine play out, give or take.
We have sent them thousands of hand-held surface-to-air missiles; they can do a lot of damage to the Russian air force.
Why? It’s obvious the UK having nukes has not deterred Putin from invading Ukraine, nor has anything else the Tory government has done, and if it comes to the point at which Putin is considering using Russia’s nukes, he’s not going to be saying to himself: “Damn it! If it was only the USA’s and France’s nukes I had to worry about, I ‘d have got away with using mine, but the UK has a few too, so I’ll have to shoot myself instead.” And then of course there’s the fact that Johnson and his cronies have been taking money from Russian oligarchs, and are now suspected of slowing the process of sanctioning them so as to give them time to get their funds out, and into save tax havens elsewhere.
It’s hard to say about Russia and nukes. Soviet Union doctrine assumed possibility of tactical nuclear exchange not leading to all out war, so on one hand if it will be the only way to break Ukraine I can imagine nuking Kyiv – but I think Putin didn’t start the war without some quiet agreement with China and he will need chinese money to survive.
And China DOES NOT want any nukes flying, becuase there is no way to predict NATO reaction.
Adam something is basically best case scenario, although sometimes his overenthusiastic takes come true.
if it is not WW3 it is a prelude to it (like spanish civil war) but it will be more like 30-years War, a series of conflicts that only later historians will sort into coherent story.
This time however nukes make pretty effective deterent from using military force, so a lot will be done by economy.
Lets be clear about one thing – this is a war between USA and it’s allies and China and it’s allies, it’s an attempt to disrupt and damage Europe by squabbles, instability, enormous cost of integrating refugees and increased costs of energy and military, so when the main rivalization starts, USA will have one ally less and will have to divide attention between Europe and Asia.
It may be hard to swallow to give away Crimea, Donetsk and Luhansk after 8 years of fighting for them and dying for them, not mentioning that from West point of view it is important to make sure that everyone gets a lesson not to use military force to annex territories.
@14 Rob Grigjanis
NATO will not risk all out war.
If there were no nukes, americans would be now preparing a breakthrough towards Volgograd already.
Putin is not unstable,I think. It’s a role he plays to intimidate West by making us afraid what madman is ready to do.
Russian is not as terrible as you think, only USA has army that has ability to supply logistics outside their territory. So while Russia made a clusterfuck out of logistics inside Ukraine, their trains worked pretty fine to supply armies on the border.
So attacking Russia would mean NATO would have to deal with difficult supply lines while Russia has it easier.
That’s why arguments Russia was threatened by NATO are so insane.
If Russia attacks Finland, then remember EU has a common defense clause, so every country from EU would help. And that would sooner or later got NATO involved.
On the subject of sanctions: there is a lot of noise among tankie leftists, about sanctions damaging average people in Russia and photos from protests used as an argument.
During BLM protests approx 4% of US population took part. War protests in ruSSia are 0.004% of population.
I’ve seen videos of journalists asking people on the street in Russia – they mostly believe in the ruSSian propaganda.
Oligarchs also will not put pressure on Putin, yeah, sanctions may reduce their wealth from 25 to 10 bln USD, but if htey criticize Putin they will have 25 years of penal colony.
Sanctions are there to break ruSSian economy, to make ruSSia unable to wage war anymore. You can’t kill Ukrainians if you can’t pay people who drive trains that transport military equipment.
On the situation in Europe
It’s dangerous already. Germany has twice the population of Poland and during previous refugee crisis (2015-2016) took around 1.1 mln refugees in 2 years.
1.1 mln Ukrainians arrived into Poland in 12 days. Yes, a lot of them will travel further into EU, but way more will come.
And those who arrived already are those who wanted to come, have family in EU, know any language, have been there previously.
Now are coming Ukrainians who were forced by bombs to run, who don’t know the language, have no plan, no idea what they will do. It’s getting difficult.
In few weeks or month a huge slump in standard of living is bound to happen. And ruSSia troll army will activate (they already started) blaming Ukrainians for issues and calling towards expelling them. Poles are sympathetic at the moment, but only 75 years ago at the end of WW2 both Poles and Ukrainians were genociding each other and there are wounds ruSSia will try to open.
Thank you for the correction!
Erlend Meyer says
Sure they can put up a good fight, but can they win? Without direct military intervention it is unlikely, and I doubt anyone is going to risk full out war with Russia’s over Ukraine. And either way the human loss will be huge.
Personally I’m half way in favor of standing our ground right here. Because this shit never ends, we might as well face them now.
Rob Grigjanis says
I know. My anger got the better of me. But we keep letting Putin make his bluffs, and giving them credence.
Only if NATO planned something like a march on Moscow (or deep into Russian territory), which we all know hasn’t turned out well in the past. Why would that be necessary? If enough damage is inflicted on the Russian armed forces within striking distance of NATO borders, that should suffice, no?
Yes, I’m not a military strategist…
“ruSSia”. I approve this message.
Regarding the possibility of nuclear war: While watching the news, I still hear pundits saying “nucular” rather than “nuclear.” Is this an oversight, ignorance, or a legacy holdover from Bush 43?
As an unapologetic, if unpaid, piece of the Ukrainian meme machine, it pains me to say that the Ruskies handle their nukes better than the USA. There is no big red button, in either the physical or bureaucratic sense since the fall of the Soviet Union. Putin can’t just unilaterally kill the world like the POTUS can, & in all likelihood it’s a bluff, anyway.
If I was being paid to guess, & remember that I’m not, I would hazard that Putin isn’t deranged for invading Ukraine. He just forgot to avoid creating an echo chamber around himself as he consolidated power while cranking out agitprop for the last 20 years or so. Man’s high on the fumes of his own hype, while affording himself so much luxury, that he’s become blind to the realities that a kleptocratic court culture has on a military. History nerd that I am, I see a lot of Napoleon IIIrd in terms of embracing liberal economic policy to “better promote prosperity” while turning a blind eye to the graft & corruption surrounding him to outwardly ape the trappings of prosperity while the peasants live on scraps.
Pictures on the ground, most notably those involving captured & intact examples found after ambush operations, show that a lot of the first wave hardware is suffering from lack of maintenance. Tires are cracking off the rims due to neglect, & hydraulics are bleeding from dry rot. Ukrainian propaganda has an interest in claiming them as combat capable seizures of top quality Rusian equipment abandoned by demoralized conscripts. And while the conscripts are doubtlessly demoralized, it’s far more likely that they’re abandoning scores of heavy equipment because it’s falling apart beneath them.
Yeah, I know the feeling as well.
It is hard to sit here on the west coast and watch 44 million Ukrainians and their country get destroyed for no real reason. We have no idea what the civilian casualties, wounded and dead will be, but they will be high numbers.
Ukraine did nothing wrong except existing.
They posed no threat to Russia, the much larger country with thousands of nukes.
No one attacks nations with nuclear weapons.
That is the dogma we have been hearing for decades.
In one of my deranged fantasies, we could just give Ukraine a few tactical nuclear weapons. And let Putin know that they can use them any time they want.
Would I actually do this, in the entirely mythical case that I could? I don’t know, maybe.
Someone posted this on a FB channel: This dark and disturbing figure is advising Putin’s inner circle. Dugin reminds me of Jordan Peterson for some reason.
For some reason that link is borked so trying again: This dark and disturbing figure is advising Putin’s inner circle.
London’s complicity with laundering Ruston money is shameful.
American military planners would be prepared to sacrifice the UK, and probably some other bits of Europe during a limited initial nuclear exchange.
I seem to remember reading that the October revolution that topples czarist Russia was started by the millitary mutiny when they realized that they were dying for nothing and had nothing against the people in the other trenches and more against the Officers who were ordering them to fight (that is probably an over simplification)
I read the news and watch the tape shows hoping to see some good news like it is over and the good guys won but all I see is misery and nothing can be done.
it is time for the Russian empire to be dismantled and all the nukes neutralized to a state of none operation and disposed of
russian imperialism is a canker on the world that begets nothing but misery and war
Marcus Ranum says
He just forgot to avoid creating an echo chamber around himself as he consolidated power while cranking out agitprop for the last 20 years or so.
He also arrested, poisoned, killed critics. That’s one way a leader can build a guaranteed echo chamber because the only people who’ll participate in a ‘government’ like that are pretty low-quality people. That gives me an idea: maybe we could send him Rudy Giuliani and Mypillow guy and Kraken lady to help him.
Marcus Ranum says
Is this an oversight, ignorance, or a legacy holdover from Bush 43?
Some conservative commentators did that, to minimize how stupid Bush sounded. Maybe it has become a habit that they haven’t broken.
Also, keep in mind that Putin is many things, but one thing he isn’t? He is not a “bad Russian.”
Warning: Some generalizations are ahead, & I’m biased as all heck.
Russia is, first & foremost, a “low trust society.” What does that mean? It means that trust in government & institutions is low in regards to protecting/serving the national interest. Governments & institutions in such societies are instead seen as necessary evils, & nothing more. If they are not protecting themselves from foriegn invaders, these groups are protecting themselves by screwing over the people, & the only thing making that bearable is propaganda & circuses, because you can’t afford bread in a kleptocracy. Evidence of that stands in Russia’s low birth rate, but I digress.
In such societies, because you can’t trust or value greater community, what do you have? You have family. Family fed you, you take care of family. Family pays the bribes to keep you out of prison; family sends you cigarettes when the bribes don’t work. Thus it is with Putin, especially if he sees himself as a new Stalin.
History lesson: Did you know that Stalin had a daughter? She was probably the only person he ever truly loved or trusted. Or so Soviet history & memoirs records. And so, to a distressing number of Russians, that mass-murdering paranoiac is relatable. He used his position in government to screw over people, but he was at least loyal to those who mattered to him.
Current events lesson: Did you know that Putin has a daughter? He reportedly sent her, her mother, & her children to Switzerland not too long ago. Most likely for safety. To you or me, this is a blatant sign of weakness. But to a good Russian? He’s protecting those who truly matter to him; he’s relatable. He’s a good Russian.
And if Putin does use nukes… nowhere will be safe for family. He’ll be acting like a bad Russian.
Correct me if I’m wrong. I need a reason to panic these days.
What Ukrainian defenders have achieved is impressive – this seems to be a proof of the old adage it all comes down to your troops in the end – and Russian conscripts suck.
Now we’re going to see, with supplies from the west, exactly what becomes of armour and aircraft in an environment flooded with man portable weapons – military theorists have been mulling that modern anti-air and armour weapons with every squad are about to nullify the historically overwhelming power of those.
Of course one of the reasons Ukraine is doing so well and still managing airborne attacks on convoys is probably that they have a direct line to NATO intelligence detailing which Russian units are where and when.
Russia will fall back on the one thing they’re good at – artillery, and advance behind barrages just flattening cities – but that’s a demonstration they have lost their intended battle. There is no pretence you’re a liberator after you do that.
@29 Erlend Meyer
I think they are likely to win after getting few extra sources checked, as long as polish border stays open and NATO sends ample supplies. Ukrainians will be able, if necessary, arm almost every ablebodied person, Russians won’t. NATO can provide weapon and ammo much longer then russian economy can work.
The part we are worrying now is how to minimize time and losses to achieve that.
The other part is how to force Russia to acknowledge defeat and how to orchestrate the deal that Ukraine will be safe and no longer at risk without making Russia a chinese colony.
@30 Rob Grigjanis
spelling ruSSia is my little act of rebellion, as this country is autocratic and basically facistic country with state wide indoctrination.
Also western tankies that I liked to listen to (past tense intended) cannot talk about Ukraine without adding at least two times “Azov Battalion” but completely ignore literal nazis in ruSSIan military, invasion of autocratic regime over democratizing country, ignoring that politically Azov Battalion can count on more votes than Jo jorgensen and Howie Hawkins but not more than both of them combined.
It’s like their recent repeating song of “do not make sanctions harm normal russians what about those protesters” – for every protester there is 10 guys running around with letter “z” and taking part in public displays of support for their forces.
being surrounded by yesmen for 20 years and being able to order to kill any Russian even hifing in UK, what wrong can happen?
At least Kim is happy, he is not most hated dictator anymore.
in 1979 Brezniev wanted to bolster the spirit caused by failing economy and invaded Afghanistan
in 1904 russians decided that they needed small victorious war to bolster morale, lost to Japan and got 1905 revolution.
yes they do keep doing it thinking it will work this time. the junta in Argentina thought the same when they invaded the Falklands which also did not go so well for them
Marcus Ranum @ #38
Perhaps it’s the other way round?
@38 @44 Send Roger Stone while you’re at it.
@ 40 trollofreason
Did you know that Putin has a daughter? He reportedly sent her, her mother, & her children to Switzerland not too long ago.
Actually he has two daughters and at least one grand child. He and his wife are divorced. One daughter has a Ph.D in one of the biological sciences and is engaged in medical research at, IIRC, Moscow State University.
This story abouth Switerland sounds a lot like the story of his mistress going to Switerland.
I must admit I think I might have believed one thing that video said. The story about the tires is particularly silly. The Russian Army has, one way or the other been on manoeuvres in Western and South Russia and in Belarus all last fall and this year up to the actual day of the attack.
For on opposing viewpoint from someone who may know what he is talking about. He only has a Pd.D in Russian studies, many years of dealing with the USSR and then Russia and is a fluent Russian speaker.
You won’t know what hit you and why
Ah , fairly straight-forward summary on, believe it or not, Fox News
SC (Salty Current) says
jrkrideau@47 Well, this is certainly a brilliant insight from your Russia expert: “Ret. Col. Macgregor said the conflict could’ve “ended days ago” if Ukraine had acquiesced to Russia.”
Right, wars can end really fast when one side surrenders immediately. Who knew?
SC (Salty Current) says
You’re an appalling apologist for fascism and war crimes, jrkrideau.
SC (Salty Current) says
PaulBC @ #49, clearly Ukraine was asking for it, dressing so democratically.
SC (Salty Current) says
Since both Dugin and Moscow State University have been mentioned here, my comment from a few days ago.
If you want to see the kind of hateful, cynical, vicious, cruel, lying far-right trash politics jrkrideau cheerleads for here, read those chapters of Gessen’s book.
Well someone asked for some real experts. It is not my problem if someone goes into denial when they see/read a different opinion on the situation than that idiot in the video is selling.
Ukraine has lost but a lot of innocent Ukrainian citizens and soldiers and Russian soldiers will die because Kiev/Zelenski will not or can not surrender.
FWIW and for those who haven’t seen already, Marcus Ranum has an interesting Stderr blog post re RuSSia’s invasion of Ukraine here :
& also here :
Whilst Aussie ABC has some good news coverage here :
among many other news sources of course.
SC (Salty Current) says
#s 109 and 294.
Also, Daily Beast – “Kremlin TV Tells Ukraine to Listen to Fox News Guest and Kneel to Putin”:
jrkrideau has as much responsibility, even if not the same size audience, as MacGregor.
So odd that it’s the Russian commandant who has been a recent casualty of this assault on Ukraine. I imagine those poor young soldiers are going to suffer immensely from the freezing cold weather headed their way, and by many reports they are very hungry. It’s as if the land itself is going to swallow the Russians, once again.
They asked for experts NOT pro-Putin propagandists.
BTW. What did you think of the one’s interviewed by Colbert in my #7 & 2 – Fiona Hill and Julia Ioffe. Not expert or quaiied enough for you? If so why?
First its Kyiv not Kiev, secondly, probly because Volodymyr Zelenskyy knows that Putin will murder him if he gets the chance with attempted assassinations already reportedly thwarted and given Putin’s record of murdering political opponents and thirdly and mianly Wow, victim-blaming much?
Blaming Ukraine for being invaded and not just rolling over and dying? What The Fuck is wrong with you that you would do that and why are seemingly so keen to side with Putin’s illegal and horrific invasion of a peaceful neighbouring country here? Why are you supporting a needless, bloody war?
UncleFrogy: “it is time for the Russian empire to be dismantled and all the nukes neutralized to a state of none operation and disposed of
russian imperialism is a canker on the world that begets nothing but misery and war”
You could say the same thing about American imperialism, and I can’t see that going away any time soon. Nor do I see the Russians doing away with their imperialism while other countries maintain theirs.
Would you have demanded that Iraqi citizens surrender to a US invasion? It’s true that the initial “Mission Accomplished” part of Bush’s war was fast, but it was still an invasion, and it’s understandable for people to fight for their country against any foreign aggressor. Do you think North Korea should simply welcome any invading force? It’s gotta be better than what they have now.
I mean, yeah, in war a lot of people die, but under certain easily understood circumstances, they will put their lives at risk instead of giving up, notwithstanding what you think about their current circumstances. So what’s your working theory here? That every time lives are at stake, you do a quick calculation and concede to whoever is stronger? Yikes. Bullies are going to throw their weight around, might makes right and all, but shouldn’t they at least have to work for it?
Or are you actually saying that Ukrainians are deluded and that Russia is promising them a better life? (The way the US claimed about Iraq.) That seems even more ludicrous. Russia is shelling cities indiscriminately and killing civilians. Right, that’s just because they want to “denazify” Ukraine I guess, and if the Ukrainians just understood, they’d roll their tanks in peacefully, clean things up and welcome them as first class members of Russky Mir.
Sorry, I mean, no I am not an “expert” on military anything, but I don’t see how any level of expertise gets around the simple truth of a nation defending itself from an invasion.
Autobot Silverwynde says
If WWII happens, we’re done. There’s a YouTube video that estimates what will happen if Russia and NATO start lobbing nukes at each other.
I won’t go into details but let’s just say that my anxiety is through the roof right now. 😬
Autobot Silverwynde says
No, you literally don’t know better than me. Knock it off.
Or maybe jrkrideau is right and Russia is just misunderstood.
They need better PR. “Don’t run. We are your friends.”
American imperialism? Hawaii was annexed in 1898, which just happens to be the same era as the last Czar and the Russian Revolution. Our borders haven’t changed much since then.
America certainly likes to throw its weight around, but we aren’t invading our neighbors based on imaginary nazi takeovers.
No, you haven’t been invading your neighbors, just sending in the CIA for regime changes. An important distinction from here, but one that’s generally lost on those who die during said regime change.
Instead America does it based on imaginary weapons of mass destruction.
@64 & 58
yes I am in favor of all empires collapsing to be replaced by self governing democratic states. the current state causing the most trouble is Putin and his state his ambition seems to be to re-assemble the greater Russian Empire of old in all its decadent glory and to do it in the fine old 19th century style with all the modern technological improvements in despotism.
yes it is time for that that old dream of an empire to end.
Our interfering with other countries governments has proved a failure time and time again may be we should stop doing it the way we have been doing it and instead promote read democratic action We could make a start by practicing what we preach and insist on following our own founding principles here at home.
Ukraine has been struggling for generations to be a free and independent country and was making some progress at having a stable democratic government with a brutal despot for a neighbor who has dreams of being the new czar of all the lands of old
if was not for his nukes he would be treated with the same respect as Saddam Hussein
Do you honestly believe the USA’s foreign interferences (speak funding militant right wingers) and invasions were due to a desire to spread democracy and the founding principles?
And Putin causing the most trouble? Well in Europe, yes. For the people you care about yes. But who cares about the Saudis’ military actions in Yemen? Who is still talking about the insurgency in Myanmar or the Tigray civil war?
no of course not I think that that is what we should be supporting but we are mostly not doing as much of that as we could.
i also think that we have had very little long term success in interfering in foreign countries. We have let business economic interests and anti-democratic interests have way too much influence on what we do. Our politicians have often taken short term gains over long term aims it is what has led us to the position we are in with regards to Iran.
the question in this thread and in this time is Ukraine and democracy vs. despotism and aggression
Meanwhile we have scumbags doing this ….
wow! what can I say?
I would like it to be a hoax as well but I can not hide from reality so easy.
And here we are… From the UK Ministry of Defence.
“Since the end of February there has been a notable intensification of Russian accusations that Ukraine is developing nuclear or biological weapons.”
This is actually news to me. But here we are. And I don’t believe for one second it’s to justify the current slaughter of Ukraine. It’s to justify the next move. To either deploy same in response as Putin did when he said Ukraine was amassing an attacking force on it’s boarders just prior to Feb 24th so Russia invaded. It’s Putin framing the conditions for deploying a nuclear weapon or other WoMD, or to blame Ukraine for one going off on home Ukranian soil, so Putin can explain all the dead Russian soldiers who he keeps telling Russians on state TV are not fighting or conscripts have not been deployed. Up to 5000 Russian parents need a reason their children are not coming home.
@ ^ AussieMike : Iguess becuase Putin was paranoid and wanted a legacy and to rebuild a lost empre just didnt cut it a sthe real reaosn then?
So they have to make bullshit up.
Informative, thought-provoking, in-depth analysis from a genuine Russian expert here with a very powerful grim conclusion worth noting. :
Typo fix for clarity because I’m too damn tired & always sadly suck at typing:
I guess becuase Putin was paranoid and wanted a legacy and to rebuild a lost empire just didn’t cut it as the real reason then?
Dunno if worth doing this but in case it helps, mea culpa folks.
This has nothing much to do with the present situation in Ukraine, which is pure aggression against a neighboring state based only on that the Russians had a larger military.
The moral calculus
Iraq II wrong
Russia Ukraine wrong.
jrkrideau’s link @46 doesn’t work (page source shows there isn’t a link there at all), but given both the text where a link should be, and the content, I’m guessing this page from Gilbert Doctorow is what was supposed to be linked.
I’d be prepared to bet a very considerable amount that any such “documentation” that appears will be very obviously faked, deliberately misinterpreted (see below) or derived from decades ago, soon after the collapse of the USSR, when we know there were nuclear weapons in Ukraine. Anyone with a gram more sense than a cuckoo clock (which clearly excludes jrkrideau) would ask themselves “Why would the USA cooperate in such illicit weapons production a stone’s throw from the Russian border, in a country known for instability and corruption, when the USA has plenty of remote places, active nuclear and biological warfare facilities (the latter allegedly only for defence, but of course under tight security so who knows), and numerous bases, allies and satellites around the world if it for some reason preferred to do the dirty work outside its borders?”
This page suggests what the Russians may have obtained:
Notice the reference to “components of biological weapons” (emphasis added). Now there are undoubtedly labs in Ukraine studying dangerous pathogens, which could be described as “components” of biological weapons, as there are in probably all countries capable of constructing and running them (I think I’ve expressed elsewhere my belief that all such labs should be under regular international surveillance by experts with no link to the research, but that’s not currently the case). The Russian invaders of Ukraine are lobbing bombs and missiles about – as are the defenders. It would be an elementary precaution to order biological labs to destroy any pathogens which (deliberate or accidental) damage to the lab could release into the environment.
Or the ongoing civil war in South Sudan.
You missed another important principle here while repeating a logical fallacy we’ve heard hundreds of times.
You are saying that because we can’t do everything to stop wars around the world, we should do nothing to stop wars around the world.
That is cosmically stupid.
We aren’t the dictators of the world or even the world’s police.
We actually pulled our support for the Saudi Arabian war in Yemen.
We don’t have much leverage in Myanmar or Ethiopia. What are we supposed to do, invade them? It’s not even clear in Ethiopia which side we should support. Sometimes the best thing is to just stay out of civil wars. Studies show that when outsiders intervene, they last twice as long, which is what happened in Afghanistan.
Ukraine and Russia does matter to us and the Europeans a whole lot more. It’s right next to western Europe, NATO, and the EU.
Already there are 1.7 million Ukrainian refugees flooding into the EU.
And this is a situation we can do something about.
Yeah, Russia and Ukraine matters a lot to us in the West. So what is wrong with us pursuing our own safety, security, and national interests while trying to prevent something that is going to be a major humanitarian disaster and a crime against humanity.
I’m one of I suspect many here who have actively opposed arms supplies to Saudi Arabia (the UK, unlike the USA, hasn’t even claimed to have stopped these supplies).
Another contrast between the Russian invasion of Ukraine, and the ongoing wars in Yemen, Ethiopia, Myanmar, South Sudan and elsewhere: the former raises the obvious danger of a direct clash between nuclear-armed powers, and hence, likely escalation to nuclear armageddon. Whatever one thinks of NATO’s continuation and expansion since the collapse of the USSR (and it’s something I’ve opposed throughout that period), it is Putin who has recklessly brought us nearer to that prospect than we have been for decades.
Jim Balter says
“As I mentioned before, Ukraine traded 5,000 nuclear weapons for a security guarantee from the USA, UK, and Russia in 1994.
And look at how well that worked out.”
They didn’t have command and control of those nukes, Russia did.
There’s a lot of ignorant nonsense on this page. The most accurate and intelligent comment is PZ’s: “I have no idea what’s going to happen.”
I was purely replying to unclefrogy. His comments made it sound like he was excusing American imperialism as justified by exporting democracy. This was not intended to excuse Russian imperialism in any way.
“You are saying that because we can’t do everything to stop wars around the world, we should do nothing to stop wars around the world.”
Where did I say that? Show me where I did! Don’t put words in my mouth.
“We aren’t the dictators of the world or even the world’s police.”
Exactly. So The USA can stop fucking meddling. Without excusing Russian imperialism, the current crisis is also partly due to American meddling.
“We actually pulled our support for the Saudi Arabian war in Yemen.”
So what? They are still doing it, and are still using oil money from western countries to do it.
“We don’t have much leverage in Myanmar or Ethiopia. What are we supposed to do, invade them?”
Fuck no. But we don’t even hear about it in the news anymore. Nobody cares.
“Ukraine and Russia does matter to us and the Europeans a whole lot more. It’s right next to western Europe, NATO, and the EU.”
I know, I am far closer to the action than you are.
“And this is a situation we can do something about.”
We can do stuff about the other conflicts as well. Why doesn’t the West sanction Saudi Arabia? I am not saying we should not sanction Russia, I am saying we should sanction a whole lot of other assholes too.
“Yeah, Russia and Ukraine matters a lot to us in the West. So what is wrong with us pursuing our own safety, security, and national interests while trying to prevent something that is going to be a major humanitarian disaster and a crime against humanity.”
Nothing wrong with it. But there is something wrong with how we never gave a shit about the other conflicts.
They didn’t have the launch and detonation codes.
The Ukrainians probably had or could easily have control of some of those nukes. At that time Russia had just collapsed and couldn’t do much of anything.
You will notice that Russia didn’t just send a fleet of trucks or railroad cars and collect their weapons. They spent a few years negotiating with Ukraine to get them back.
They even signed a security agreement with the USA , Ukraine, and UK to guarantee Ukrainian independence.An agreement they have since broken.
.1. The launch codes are just software and wiring. I would imagine anyone with technical expertise and enough time could just bypass them.
.2. If nothing else, the Urkainians could just take them apart and reuse the components to make simple nukes. Nuclear weapons are based on 1940s technology.
Ukraine has a huge amount of nuclear expertise. They get half of their electricity from 15 nuclear power plants. If South Africa and Pakistan can make nukes, Ukraine could easily do so.
A trivial insult from an anonymous internet commenter. I don’t find your assertion without proof convincing.
You don’t come across as very bright either.
Rob Grigjanis says
jrkrideau @47: An article about your ‘expert’, Lt Col Douglas MacGregor;
So much more. MacGregor is a nutbar. Even the Fox guy thought he went too far.
Rob Grigjanis says
Regarding the nonsense about East and South Ukraine being ‘Russian’. It’s like saying Canada outside Quebec is ‘American’. There are Russian-speakers who welcome Russian intervention. But there are many who consider themselves Ukrainian. Look up Kharkiv.
Maybe you should try actually looking for such coverage – I think you would probably have done so if you cared, other than to make a cheap political point. Here are the Guardian pages on Myanmar, and Ethiopia.
Greg Tingey says
robro @ 34
NOT JUST Dugin – also Julius Evola & Ivan Ilyin, too – all dangerous mystic fascists. ( Look them up )
ajbjasus @ 36
Correct, we have a problem, our tory party are a party of corrupt, crawling Quislings, & we are stuck with these incompetent traitorous slime-bags until 2024.
Interesting Guardianhistorical article on the relationships between Russia, Ukraine, gas, pipelines, Putin, and a particular Ukranian but pro-Russian and now UK-domiciled oligarch, Dmitry Firtash
It depends on the complexity of the nuke. AFAIK, the later generation of nuclear weapons require extremely precise firing sequences for the conventional explosives surrounding the follow sphere of uranium or plutonium. Those very precise firing timing numbers may be encrypted. If so, you cannot fire the nuke without the decryption keys, and/or if you try with the wrong firing numbers, you might not get a nuclear explosion at all, or it may be an extremely small nuclear explosion.
One of the tell-tale signs that someone is developing nuclear weapons is the extremely complicated computer simulations of this kind of implosion by conventional explosives. It’s very hard work.
You are right that you could just take the thing apart to get the weapons grade nuclear material and make a new bomb, and possibly a much easier design to make such as the simple gun-type bomb that doesn’t require the very complicated computer modeling of a spherical implosion.
My point is, it’s probably much harder than your initial guess of just replacing the firing computer.
Ok but how?
I have no desire to defend the actions of the CIA, my point is that the US does not invade anyone in order to annex their land anymore. Follow the oil/money for the various sordid shit the CIA has done, I am not a fan. It’s arguable that 911 would never have happened if Mohammad Mossadegh, the Democratically elected leader of Iraq had not been assassinated by M16 and the CIA back in the 50s. Spoiler, he planned to nationalize their oil supplies. https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2020/01/16/divisive-legacy-irans-royal-family/
Both sides is a classic logical fallacy, just as starting land wars in Eur-Asia is a classic military blunder.
There was a joke on some talk show back when Bush was in office.
Q: How is George Bush so sure that Saddam Hussein has weapons of mass destruction?
A: Because he has the receipt.
I would just like to add that when I brought up American imperialism (by which I mean the conversion of other countries into more obedient semi-colonies, rather than outright annexation), I was not trying to excuse Putin by saying “both sides do it”.
I’m saying that Putin and others like him feel justified in their imperialism by watching the American version go unpunished. I’m also saying that mechanisms that might have been used to stop his imperialism (such as UN action) are toothless because they’ve let similar actions by the USA go unpunished. Putin can assure his people that “we’re not going to war- we’re just arresting some bad apples” because that’s what the USA has done for decades.
I hope Putin accidentally falls into a blender or chokes on a shot glass, because I can’t see many other ways this ends without horrific loss of life. Even more horrific than it is already I mean.
Further to my #85, the question has been raised w.r.t. Putin’s invasion: why now? One possible answer I haven’t seen discussed is that he thought the global shortage of gas and oil (as a result of demand recovering from the pandemic faster than supply) would protect Russia from serious sanctions.
Another possibility is that it was the recent public and private discussions about Ukraine trying to really join NATO, then add 6 months or whatever to plan the whole thing out and get ready for it. That seems to be my best guess from the limited information.
No it isn’t, it’s an invasion of Ukraine by Russia. There’s no evidence I’m aware of that Xi wanted this, or knew about it in advance. If you know of any, Gorzki, produce it. China was doing very well out of the pre-invasion world order, while the economic disruption resulting from the invasion will mean increased prices for China’s energy and food imports, and falling demand for its manufactured exports. Certainly, Xi and the Chinese elite want to replace the USA as the world’s hegemonic power, but are well aware of China’s current military inferiority to the USA. Since they have been rapidly improving their relative economic power (and as a consequence, their ability to fund political and military advances), their interest is in delaying any outright confrontation with the USA. The Russian alliance is insurance against an American attack, but the invasion of Ukraine has placed them in a very difficult position, since their propaganda stresses their “respect for national sovereignty” (i.e., willingness to collaborate with any vile dictator or kleptocracy) – as is clear from their pusillanimous abstentions in the UNSC and UNGA.
Can you provide some references to “recent public and private discussions about Ukraine trying to really join NATO”? I’m not saying there were none, but I wasn’t aware of them, and understood there was no chance of that happening in the forseeable future, because most NATO members would oppose it, not wanting to get into a direct confrontation with Russia.
raven@80: the Budapest agreement just says that if Ukraine is attacked, the parties will refer the matter to the security council. They did that, and the security council vote went down due to a veto by a permanent member of the council… namely, Russia. So, Russia violated the agreement by attacking, but the US and UK have technically satisfied the requirements. (Indeed it’s not entirely clear but arguably the agreement doesn’t even apply to a conventional force invading, but only in the case of nuclear war.)
Ukraine won’t accept such a weak agreement again.