Looks like the Europe edition of “Syria, the overthrow.”
Remember: the ‘founding fathers’ of the US tried to put some controls on the government’s ability to go running off, starting wars. Good idea, bad implementation. It should have been the 2nd amendment to the constitution: “The nation shall not deploy military force without a 2/3 majority vote in the house, or a majority vote of the citizenry.” Or something like that. I am endlessly frustrated and infuriated by my countrypeople’s insistence that gun ownership is important, but controlling the nation’s military is apparently not.
Just reading between the lines of this makes me want to cry: [cnn]
President Joe Biden has said that sending US combat troops to Ukraine to fight a war with Russia is off the table. But special operations forces already rotate in and out of the country to provide training to Ukrainian forces and a senior administration official said it is possible that other agencies could provide some support, likely the CIA. CIA Director Bill Burns traveled to Kyiv last week to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky and discuss risks to Ukraine, a US official said.
Special operations troops are combat troops – if you’re putting them out in a dangerous place as a placeholder that might get shot at, they are being deployed into combat. Congress has the authority to do that; it does not lie solely with the president. Fucking hell, hasn’t anyone in Washington learned anything yet? “Providing training” and “providing support” is combat, because it’s freeing up other soldiers to do the fighting and dying. This is a military fact that has been understood by basically anyone who has done any thinking about warfare, since forever. A pile of rocks, if placed so as to support offensive operations is offensive warfare.
Also: the Ukrainians don’t need any training at how to resist a Russian attack. You don’t need instructions on “how to kiss your ass goodbye.”
“We are looking at a range of options to help defend Ukraine,” a senior administration official told CNN. This may include additional defensive arms sales, “advice,” and “helping Ukraine be able to stay in the fight against a larger, conventional Russian military presence.”
Additional defensive arms sales. I.e.: more. So, the US has been turning Ukraine into an armed client-state on the Russian border, just like the Russians said they really didn’t want anyone to do. Again, imagine how the US would react if Russia started “selling” weapons to Mexico. Or, I guess, in today’s political environment I should say “imagine if the Russians started arming Texas.”
The deliberations about supporting a resistance campaign reflect an increasingly pessimistic view inside the administration about Putin’s willingness to invade and occupy large swaths of Ukrainian territory. Russia has increased force levels since Friday, the senior administration official said.
That battle you’re gonna lose? We’re going to make sure you lose it harder and nastier. You’re welcome.
“Let’s be clear. Our view is this is an extremely dangerous situation. We’re now at a stage where Russia could at any point launch an attack in Ukraine,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki said on Tuesday. “And what Secretary Blinken is going to go do is highlight very clearly there’s a diplomatic path forward. It is the choice of President Putin and the Russians to make whether they’re going to suffer severe economic consequences or not.”
Let’s be clear: if there is a diplomatic path forward, then you don’t “have to” go arming anyone, or sending special forces to train people, or having the CIA do what the CIA does (set up torture prisons, mostly). If there is a diplomatic path forward, then none of those things are consistent with diplomacy. Diplomacy works best if you stop making the situation worse so you can start making it better. This tells you something about the mentality of the people who are making policy for the US: they are incapable of approaching the situation from any perspective that does not begin with “you do what I say.” I.e.: the opposite of actual “diplomacy” – it’s just dictating imperial terms.
Then comes a big heading:
As recently as late last week, Biden administration officials were conducting table-top exercises gaming out all of the possible US and allied policy responses, sources familiar with the planning told CNN.
I see the problem: the shitheads in Washington think the lives of the people in Ukraine are chips in a game. People of Ukraine, this is your once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be the new Vietnam.
And, just to head off anyone who is thinking of saying, “but this is how it’s always been” let me remind you that “it has also never worked.”