Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
March 13, 2021

Why The War In Ukraine May Soon Resume

Several Russia watchers - Patrick Armstrong, Andrei Martyanov and Andrei Raevsky - are musing about a renewed attack by the government of Ukraine on its eastern Donbass region. The Donbass separated in 2014 after the U.S. driven coup in Kiev installed an anti-Russian government which then waged a war on its ethnic Russian east.

There have been a number of reports about heavy Ukrainian equipment moving east and other hints of military preparations. Russia has seen enough such signs to issue a strong warning:

"I would like to warn the Kiev regime and the hotheads that are serving it or manipulating it against further de-escalation and attempts to implement a forceful scenario in Donbass," [Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova] said, commenting on the statement of head of the Ukrainian delegation to the Contact Group for settlement in Donbass Leonid Kravchuk on some "radical steps" of Kiev if Russia refuses to recognize itself as a conflict side in eastern Ukraine.
...
Zakharova recalled that the Minsk Agreements clearly outline the conflict sides in Donbass as Kiev, Donetsk and Lugansk. "The unwillingness of Ukrainian negotiators to recognize this fact and their refusal to find agreements with Donbass is the reason that hinders the establishment of long-lasting peace in the region," the diplomat noted.

The main catalyst for such a war is the sorry state of the government in Kiev. The country is in in the midst of a constitutional crisis:

[T]he Constitutional Court of Ukraine (CCU) recently plunged the country into one of its deepest crises in its 30-year history. Specifically, on October 27, 2020, the Court declared that the main elements of Ukraine’s anti-corruption legislation, adopted between 2014 and 2020, were unconstitutional. In response, President Zelensky introduced legislation calling for the early termination of all Constitutional Court judges. Later, in December, he suspended the chairman of the Court for two months.

The result was widespread chaos in Ukraine’s political system. Zelensky’s actions were of questionable legality and provoked harsh criticism from all political sides. The ramifications of the Court’s decision include the cancellation of over 100 pending corruption investigations, a development that potentially could endanger future EU-Ukraine trade and economic cooperation Ukraine under the 2014 Association Agreement.

After the 2014 Euromaidan coup an 'independent' National Anti-Corruption Bureau (NABU) was created to oversee the investigation and prosecution of corrupt state officials. The NABU has since been used by the U.S. embassy to bring criminal cases against those oligarchs it dislikes and to cover for those it likes. The constitutional court found that NABU is a criminal investigation agency outside the control of the executive branch which is a contradiction to the Ukrainian constitution.

The crisis has since escalated:

President Zelensky has now taken several provocative steps, including proposing legislation that voids the Constitutional Court's anti-corruption rulings and begins the process of dismissing and replacing those justices who supported that decision. None of these actions are supported under present-day Ukrainian law. The rhetoric between the president and the Constitutional Court is also escalating, with Constitutional Court Chairman Tupitskyi warning that the president’s actions threaten the territorial integrity of Ukraine. Calls for impeachment proceedings are being raised in the Rada, and Zelensky yet again escalated the crisis on February 3, 2021 by blocking pro-Russian TV channels controlled by Victor Medvedchuk. The legality of the latter action was even questioned by the EU, who told Zelensky that while Ukraine possessed the right to protect itself from disinformation, it still had to comply with international standards and “fundamental rights and freedoms.”

The pressure on Zelensky is growing as he tries to navigate the fine line of obeying the law as written while simultaneously claiming that the very integrity of the country is at stake. And Zelensky’s problems are only mounting, with the Cabinet of Ministers recently calling for the dismissal of the head of NABU and the IMF delaying the next tranche of financial support, in part because of Ukraine’s failure to implement a comprehensive anti-corruption program.

Polling numbers for Zelensky have sharply declined. Right wing city councils call on Zelensky to outlaw the largest opposition party. Meanwhile the pandemic puts a record number of people into hospitals while a meager vaccination campaign is failing.

A war against the eastern separatist could be a Hail Mary attempt by Zelensky to regain some national and international support.

But nothing will happen on the frontline without the consent or even encouragement from Washington DC. The Biden administration is filled with the same delusional people who managed the 2014 coup in Kiev. They may believe that the NATO training the Ukrainian army received and the weapons the U.S. delivered are sufficient to defeat the separatist. But the state of the Ukrainian military is worse than one might think and the separatist will have Russia's full backing. There is no question who would win in such a fight.

As a commentator at Turcopolier remarked:

If the US is not careful it is going to give the Russians another opportunity to show to the World their military prowess, the flexibility of their Military District system allowing multi front operation and their unfailing support for an ally. As well as potentially letting the Russians show to Europe that they have nothing to fear, if they stop at 30 miles or so and basically go back home. All whilst the US demonstrates the opposite, but then reinforcing DC may trump the World.

Posted by b on March 13, 2021 at 17:30 UTC | Permalink

Comments
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@Piotr Berman 97, "The "problems of Zelensky" are problems of a vassal, so they cannot be separated from problems of USA."

Actually, from what I hear from Dmitry Dzhangirov (my favorite political analyst), they can, sort of.

Zelensky decided to run for re-election even though he promised he wouldn't. Sure, he probably got the permission from the colonial administration, and pehaps was encouraged to run. And so he is now positioning himself accordingly. Maneuvering, to pass into the second round, and to win the runoff.

All that, obviously, within the constrains imposed by the colonial administration.

Posted by: Mao Cheng Ji | Mar 14 2021 14:11 utc | 101

@92

The situation you describe where China pivots is very unlikely.

The Ukraine is about to cheat the Chinese of their investments in Ukrainian business.

Also, the Chinese are just as aware of America's "Agreement incapable" habits

Posted by: Some Random Passerby | Mar 14 2021 15:23 utc | 102

Bruce Lee Marvin Gay@58 ignores the routine assaults on the majority of people as sheeple etc. Instead, calling out BS by commenters is deemed abusive. This is perverse. Norwegian is so ridiculous but still vicious--or is it the other way round?--I even remember the name. Norwegian's disapproval is an honor, however unintended. The idea that comments are basically mutual compliments and anything less is trolling, that the commentariat is sort of a club and the most important thing is being clubbable, is...well, saying true things is held to be abuse, so perhaps I'd best not make the children cry.

Hoarsewhisperer@69 asks if I ever wonder if I take myself too seriously. Obviously this is a rhetorical question meant to say indirectly that I do. Given that Hoarsewhisperer is intervening in an exchange prompted by William Gruff's pompous dialogue, the question should have been directed at William Gruff, not me. By the way, Hoarsewhisperer@75 asserts that time is on Russia's side. Yes, well, in the long run, we are all dead. There is no reason whatsoever to think time is on Russia's side, at least no credible reasons have ever been offered up here. Putin has no end game for Ukraine. I don't rate Putin's morals highly enough to be as outraged as Hoyeru at Putin's acquiescence to fascism in Ukraine. But even in a miserably narrow-minded self-interested point of view, capitulating to fascism for Crimea was a dumbfuck move. Again, life is not chess, and no military stalemate lasts forever. That's why time as such is not on Russia's side. Putin has no strategy beyond vainly wishing fascists would make peace. The more fool he.

Posted by: steven t johnson | Mar 14 2021 15:29 utc | 103

@Some Random Passerby | Mar 14 2021 15:23 utc | 102

It is not China to pivot. That's the job of the US.

1939 SU was expelled from the League of Nations. Look into the diplomatic relations between US and SU over the following period till end of 1941 (when the SU got access to 'Lend Lease'). Not very friendly, at least.

History is multidimensional. Textbooks are linear.

Posted by: Gerhard | Mar 14 2021 16:03 utc | 104

Mr. Gerhard

The better analogy to the current world situation is Summer of 1914.

Iran is like Serbia, NATO is like the Germanic Axis, China is the analogue of Imperial Japan, and Russia be Russia.

The war will result in devastation of Iran and the destruction of NATO, and the expansion of Chinese power.

Posted by: Fyi | Mar 14 2021 16:18 utc | 105

I don't rate Putin's morals highly enough to be as outraged as Hoyeru at Putin's acquiescence to fascism in Ukraine. But even in a miserably narrow-minded self-interested point of view, capitulating to fascism for Crimea was a dumbfuck move. Again, life is not chess, and no military stalemate lasts forever. That's why time as such is not on Russia's side. Putin has no strategy beyond vainly wishing fascists would make peace. The more fool he.

Posted by: steven t johnson | Mar 14 2021 15:29 utc | 103

Initially, I misunderstood your grammar, but after a correction, what you wrote still makes no sense. Spell out what would it take to avoid "acquiescence to fascism in Ukraine", and then we can evaluate Putin's strategy. About "no military stalemate lasts forever": look at the stalemate/co-existence of Rome and Persia. It lasted until Arabs appeared on the scene in 7th century, and it started in 1st century BC when they got into a direct contact. Attempts to finish the stalemate lead to sorry results, and ultimately, Arabs took over the Middle East precisely because of both Byzantines and Persians being exhausted by their war.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 14 2021 16:38 utc | 106

The Americans will fight Russia to the last Ukrainian.

Just like they are fighting Syria to the last pro-American Head-Chopper Islamicist in that nation.

Russia cannot just fight America's expendable proxy and cannon fodder (Ukraine), it must fight America itself--whether through Hybrid War or Hot War.

The only way that America will cease and desist its malign behavior around the world is if the Imperial American Homeland itself is hit and hit hard.

Or better yet, the United States America is broken into multiple rump states. Hawaii, Aztlan, Lakota Republic and other nations can emerge out of destruction of Imperial America.

The thing about the United States is that wars of aggression are fundamental to its political and cultural DNA.

Americanism=Imperialism.

Most native-born Americans do not know what it is like to have massive airpower rain down on their precious heads, homes, or families; their own population made into a horde of desperate refugees; and their country turned into a massive failed state and shithole country.

No, those things only happen halfway around the world in someone else's nation, while Americans sit fat and comfortable, munching popcorn and watching the carnage that their country has wrought on TV.

America desperately needs to be taught a lesson in the horrors of war--up close and personal.

Otherwise, America's inbred sense of imperial impunity to wage its cowardly proxy wars around the world will continue....

US, Allies Drop 46 Bombs Per Day for 20 Years, New CODEPINK Research Reveals
The United States has been at war for nearly every year of its existence as an independent nation, fighting in 227 years of its 244-year history.
https://www.mintpressnews.com/us-drops-46-bombs-per-day-20-years-middle-east/275943/

Posted by: ak74 | Mar 14 2021 17:05 utc | 107

Mr. Piotr Berman

Exactly so.

Judeo-Christians are exhausting themselves in Eastern Europe, in the Near East, and in the Far East.

One needs to wait out their exhaustion as they harm their own allies with their stupid policies

Consider, they made sure that Iran was excluded from pipelines for gas transport and road transport to the Black Sea Basin, denying Ukraine the possibility of being a transportation hub for gas as well as for commodities.

There are very very good reasons for strategic patience by Russia, China, and Iran.

Posted by: Fyi | Mar 14 2021 17:07 utc | 108

I stumbled upon seemingly apolitical website of economic analysis:

After the EU was called on to sanction Russia and blinked in the face of Lavrov’s threats there is a camp that believe the US will put more weight on fixing its relations with Europe than punishing Russia for jailing a dissident that is actually not that popular with the people in the first place.

If this is the case, then the sanctions discount placed on Russian assets is too large and the market will rally once a mild new sanctions regime is announced, argues Evgeniya Sleptsova, an economist with Oxford Analytics.

“In our view the new sanctions are unlikely to have a meaningful impact on the Russian economy or its sovereign debt, and thus we believe the risk premium is exaggerated. We estimate the ruble is 5%-7% undervalued, and we expect it to appreciate to 72.3 RUB/$ by year-end,” says Sleptsova.
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The dog that did not bark here: the specter of a hot war in Ukraine. Do not sell rubble puts on that basis.

Russia minimized exposure to "international financial markets", secured domestic financial markets, invested in import substitution. While that leads to meager growth, it is hard to inflict pain on Russia and that reduces sadistic temptations of American sanction experts. Sometime defensive preparations are better from "action".

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 14 2021 17:30 utc | 109

OMG, my spelling. Ruble, even if undervalued, is not rubble.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 14 2021 17:31 utc | 110

'to destroy Donbass economically... If they don't in five minutes much of Donetsk and Luhansk cities will be smoking ruins.'

John, in no way is that true. If you knew the true state - or at least have a good idea, of the ukrainian military you would never say that, not even if they were up to hato (deliberate spelling with the 'h') standards.

Putin said he would never abandon the Donbass Republics' people: 'We will not abandon the Donbass. No matter what'; maybe 10% of those people are now Russian citizens.

Posted by: Ralph | Mar 14 2021 17:57 utc | 111

" The NABU has since been used by the U.S. embassy to bring criminal cases against those oligarchs it dislikes and to cover for those it likes"

How interesting. A vague reference to an 'embassy'. Pray tell, who actually wields power in that 'embassy'?

Strikes me as odd that this article fails to mention that Zelensky (Jewish), Nuland (Jewish), Khomoisky (Jewish) and a host of others are all a member of a tribe that is < 1% of Ukraine's population.

Ukrainians are being ruled over by a Jewish elite, with a couple of token Tatar and Ukrainian oligarchs thrown in for cover.

Posted by: jim | Mar 14 2021 18:06 utc | 112

@Gerhard
Why would China settle for half of Russia? They get all the resources they want from Russia now. The Western self described "elite" have nothing to offer Russia there. Why would China care about the Ukraine? Especially if it attacked the Donbass. The "elites" aren't worried about nukes? That is crazy talk.

Posted by: goldhoarder | Mar 14 2021 18:07 utc | 113

@ Piotr Berman | Mar 14 2021 17:31 utc | 110.. perhaps a freudian slip on what the usa would like to make of it! you too could write for the atlantic council, lol...

Posted by: james | Mar 14 2021 18:09 utc | 114

At 62: 'Putin the Pussy for letting Ukraine fall into USA hands. You deserve everything you get.'

Russia was in a much weaker position then that it couldn't do much, otherwise it would have.

First and foremost, Putin is the President of RUSSIA, and has to do what's in the best interests of the Russian people...who put him in power, no matter how much he would like to help the Donbass people (more), and he has done.

He stated recently that he is going to do more for them, and in the meantime, he has given maybe 10% (IIRC) of the Donbass people Russian passports.

Furthermore, he also stated: 'We will not abandon the Donbass. No matter what.' And that is about the best guarantee in the world to have, when it comes to help.

So you wanted/expected Putin to have done more? Well let's get personal with YOU, and ask YOU, WTF have YOU done for the Donbass People?

Posted by: Ralph | Mar 14 2021 18:11 utc | 115

It was reported on March 11, that a RER Boeing RC-135W Rivet Joint aircraft of the british air force (Board ZZ666) flew to ukraine... Reminds me of solgar, the yank company which sells multivitamins etc, is sellling Folate 666 mcg.

ukrainian nutter, dmytro gordon, says a film from bellingcrap about Russian spies in the ukrainian elite will be released tomorrow.

On March 7, military advisers of the shitstirring brit armed forces arrived in Kramatorsk 50 kms NW of Gorlovka, & at the Mayorskoye checkpoint.

Posted by: Ralph | Mar 14 2021 19:47 utc | 116

Why my post does not show up? Last trial.

uncle tungsten @ 60

AOC would shame to death if she had voted to support the Catholic Pope! Yet she feel absolutely righteous to support the incarnation of CIA tool Dalai Lama.

AOC is just as bad and dangerous as, if not worse than, the straight right-winger Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio. She and her brand neoliberals are diehard Empire supporters disguised in name of so-called liberal values. AOC & Co are deft at using "human right", "freedom of speech/religion" to attack any country that does not succumb to US Empire.

AOC obviously is not informed that the historical institutional procedure 金瓶掣签(Golden Urn) to confirm the incarnation of a new Dalai Lama.

This selection system was instituted in 1792 by Qing Emperor.

The confirmation and ceremony of current 14th Dalai Lama was taken place under then Central Government run by Kuomingtang, Republic Of China, in 1940.

Posted by: lulu | Mar 14 2021 20:47 utc | 117

@ Fyi | Mar 14 2021 16:18 utc | 105

The topic of this thread is Ukraine. I wanted to express that at the moment there is no danger of true escalation.

You are right that Iran is in a similar critical condition, but people of Iran are less chaotic. Instead Iran is very reliable and nobody would talk about and against it if there were not Israel and the Jewish lobby. I do not follow the mainstream hysteric about Iran.

You wrote: The war will result in devastation of Iran and the destruction of NATO, and the expansion of Chinese power.

Only the last is sure and true. China is the only and real souvereign power on earth (nation & people based), prepared to face all challenges. It solely can win.

@ goldhoarder | Mar 14 2021 18:07 utc | 113

You wrote: Why would China settle for half of Russia? They get all the resources they want from Russia now. The Western self described "elite" have nothing to offer Russia there. Why would China care about the Ukraine? Especially if it attacked the Donbass. The "elites" aren't worried about nukes? That is crazy talk.

China will not have to settle for half of Russia. They get it 'free' in case Russia makes the mentioned mistakes. The West needs not to offer something to Russia - it wants to destroy Russia. China does not care about Ukraine, but it would change its present politics of relative favour towards Russia if Russia would engage seriously in Ukraine (and eventually additional in Europe if the latter is further drifting into chaos). The upper elites are not worried about nukes because they have their bunkers & islands & safe countries. And because they know that nukes will not be used except the new & innovative ones (unknown to the public) and except for restricted tactical & specific purposes.

Thanks for Your comments and reading! (Based in Europe) I have to leave. Regards, Gerhard

Posted by: Gerhard | Mar 14 2021 20:57 utc | 118

Nothing new to most MoA readers, but it does aggregate much important information in one place.


How the USA is Able to Dictate to the Rest of the World (including China)

Posted by: _K_C_ | Mar 14 2021 21:47 utc | 119

_K_C_@118.

Old news, that China, Russia, Iran et all are very well aware of and are actively working to nullify. Hence the recent trade treaty between 15 Asian countries utilising only local currencies.

Just as the U.S. has a completely false sense of it’s military superiority, so too is the dollar beginning to weaken. Exports are now worth around 15% of China’s GDP and it’s concentrating on it’s internal markets which don’t require the $.

I can envisage a time in the not too distant future where even U.S.companies will have to trade in Yuan if they want to do business with China.

Posted by: Beibdnn | Mar 14 2021 22:49 utc | 120

President Zelensky introduced legislation calling for the early termination of all Constitutional Court judges. Later, in December, he suspended the chairman of the Court for two months.

This is not “an action of questionable legality” or Zelensky “trying to navigate the fine line of obeying the law as written”. This is a completely illegal, unconstitutional action.

On January 19, the Department of the State Protection of Ukraine has once again illegally prevented Oleksandr Tupytskyi, the Chairman of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine, from entering the premises of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine: an article by Segodnya (machine translated from Russian), Tupytskyi interviewed by 112 Ukraine TV channel (in Ukrainian). The Constitutional Court of Ukraine has published the following statement (my translation from Ukrainian):

Today, on January 19, employees of the Department of the State Protection of Ukraine, without explaining the reasons, are once again preventing the Chairman of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine Oleksandr Tupytskyi from entering the premises of the Court and his personal office.

According to Oleksandr Tupytskyi, this is another attempt to unlawfully interfere with the activities of the Chairman of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine, an obstruction of his official duties, aimed at blocking the functioning of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine as a whole. By a decree of the President of Ukraine, Oleksandr Tupytskyi has been removed (suspended) from a position of a judge of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine; he must continue to perform administrative functions as the Chairman of the Court, as he has been authorized to do so by the judges of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine.

Failure to perform the administrative functions of the Chairman of the Court will lead to destabilization of the functioning of the entire institution.

The Department of the State Protection of Ukraine is tasked with protecting high-level government officials (including the Chairman of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine) and important government buildings (including the building of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine). The Head of the Department is appointed and dismissed solely by the President of Ukraine.

Posted by: S | Mar 14 2021 23:02 utc | 121

I can envisage a time in the not too distant future where even U.S.companies will have to trade in Yuan if they want to do business with China.

Posted by: Beibdnn | Mar 14 2021 22:49 utc | 119

One can hope. China has already introduced an alternative to SWIFT (discussed in the article I linked) but for now the amount of money that clears that system is but a tiny fraction of SWIFT transactions.

Posted by: _K_C_ | Mar 14 2021 23:22 utc | 122

Ralph 111

Yes our Rivit Joints seem to be making regular flights there now but generally just transit over Ukraine and patrol over the Black Sea. There was a Global Hawk up and down the demarcation line today.

As to the destruction capability, it depends on several factors. The ability of the, now contract not conscript, trained for 3+ years by NATO, gun crews, who have not apparently been subject to the morale sapping trench warfare. The standard of the equipment, the important items of which have either not been used since 2016, pulled out of ex Soviet stock, or have been sourced from ex Soviet armies, some argue that it is in pretty good nick. The target selection and priority.

I do not disagree that the bulk of the UA is one up from a rabble who would not last long but I am only talking about perhaps the first 5 minutes of fire by some of the better troops and equipment. With the appropriate priority a few thousand 152mm shells etc in those 5 minutes onto the known co-ordinates of unhardened infrastructure targets like schools, hospitals, factories, mines, bridges etc would maybe not turn the cities into smoking ruins but would do huge, expensive and lasting damage before re-targeting onto military targets.

The attitude in Kiev seems to be to get rid of the problem, not save life or property.

Posted by: JohninMK | Mar 14 2021 23:43 utc | 123

It seems to me that Russia has finally had it with both the USA and its obedient servant, the EU -- "Not agreement-capable", immoral, untrustworthy, run by totally corrupt politicians and neocon ideologues who are uneducated and filled to the brim with hubris. Sanctions have led Russia to become both self-sufficient and allied with China; Russia is building an Early Warning System for China, sharing the latest military technology, conducting joint military exercises on land and sea with China, the brilliant strategists in the US drove Russia and China into each other's arms. The New Silk Road will make all those sea lanes so much more unimportant, with obsolete Carrier Battle Groups transformed into sitting ducks for Russian and Chinese hypersonic missiles.

Martyanov writes brilliant about the Real Revolution in Military Affairs, which has left the US a couple generations behind in hypersonic weaponry, electronic warfare, and missile defense. All this because the US abrogated the ABM Treaty and told Russia they didn't care what Russia chose to do in response.

NATO now will have to contend with a reconstituted Russian Tank Army supplied with new generations of weapons, which will stun any surviving NATO commanders who haven't been preemptively fried in their bunkers. Russian cruise missiles with unlimited range can attack the US homeland from any direction, or loiter over the bunkers in New Zealand where US oligarchs go to hide. New Sarmat delivers mach 20+ maneuverable warheads, drone subs that can outrun any US torpedos carry 100 megaton warheads off US coastlines where they create 1000 foot high radioactive tidal waves that sweep hundreds of miles inland.

It is a Brave New World, but the neocon fools are so brainwashed by their own propaganda that they remain seemingly unaware of the new military realities of the 21st century. And that is unfortunately the main danger here, a neocon wet dream of "isolating Russia" through a massive Ukrainian attack on the Donbass that will immediately result in Russia crushing the UAF and occupying Kiev.

At that point we really have to worry about Launch-On-Warning. The fog of war can be rather thick . . . but with launch-ready nuclear weapons, which require only 2 minutes from permission order to launch, there isn't a hell of a lot of time to sort things out.

Posted by: Perimetr | Mar 15 2021 0:19 utc | 124

JohninMK -- five minutes of destruction scenario

For starters, long range cannons do not have the fire rate of anti-aircraft weapons. More importantly, action has a reaction. If a massive destruction of civilian structure starts, Russia may (and will) claim humanitarian emergency and scramble its forces, starting from the air force. In this region, RuAF was pretty good intercepting American B-52 bombers etc, they are in high readiness. It may take more than five minutes, but the happy warriors shelling Donbass may face a rain of fire ten minutes later. In when you body is fragmented, satisfaction from the inflicted destruction is gone.

This drill was tried in Georgia. Georgians shelled indiscriminetely Tshinval (capital of South Ossetia, Georgian call it Tshinvali) and few hours later they were facing Russian ground troops that crossed the Caucasus for the occasion (they controlled the key tunnel). Similarly, while the front line of Donbas is manned by two corps (estimated 30-40 k strong) of native Donbas men, allegedly -- pro-Russian source -- there is an unofficial third corps that consisted of Russian volunteers who crossed the border to help their kin, thoughtful folks that they are, this corp has comparable fire power to UAF. Thus Russia has capacity to respond to attacks on various scale.

And on the largest scale, they may occupy the line of 1648 border of Polish-Lithuanian commonwealth, to the east and south of that line the government in Kiev is not popular.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 15 2021 0:26 utc | 125

caucasions and northern europeans die fighting each other for no good, or even stated, reason while israel expands borders, freely bombs muslims and people forced to take poisonous injection designed by epstein, all according to NWO plan.
yawn

Posted by: J. Michael Hudson | Mar 15 2021 1:24 utc | 126

@32

What does his being a Jew got to do with it? He's a puppet.

Posted by: Biswapriya Purkayast | Mar 15 2021 3:20 utc | 127

@Some Random Passerby | Mar 14 2021 15:23 utc | 102

The Ukraine is about to cheat the Chinese of their investments in Ukrainian business.

That appears to be true. Ukraine will be nationalizing Motor Sich, confiscating it from Chinese investors. Apparently these investors will be losing big money, as they are suing for $3.5 billion in international arbitration.

Well, the Russians do not feel responsible for rescuing the Ukraine, as Russia did not break it in the first place. If the Ukrainians proceed with the nationalization of Motor Sich, they can say goodbye to any future help from China.

Posted by: Cyril | Mar 15 2021 6:21 utc | 128

@127 Cyril

China knows the score here. It's lost plenty of investments from bad actors screwing deals in many countries. It's not going to get upset over this one going down, compared with what it understands about its partner Russia's overarching predicament with Ukraine.

Commerce is real, and it matters, but it's a lesser thing compared with the geopolitics in play, the realities of states and statehood. The power that secures contracts comes out of the barrel of a gun in the first place, and contracts only follow behind.

Odds are good that China can still come into Ukraine after all the bullets have fallen to the ground, and the people able to guarantee contracts are settled into place. If there's any of that fabulous black soil left for those bullets to fall into, China can make a deal with whomever rules the surface of it. Even if two factions rule, across a Russia/NATO line, China's commerce can still deal with both sides.

This is normal.

Posted by: Grieved | Mar 15 2021 6:53 utc | 129

@Grieved | Mar 15 2021 6:53 utc | 128

Odds are good that China can still come into Ukraine after all the bullets have fallen to the ground, and the people able to guarantee contracts are settled into place. If there's any of that fabulous black soil left for those bullets to fall into, China can make a deal with whomever rules the surface of it. Even if two factions rule, across a Russia/NATO line, China's commerce can still deal with both sides.

That is perhaps the Ukrainian hope. But Russia will have a massive presence on the Belt and Road, and the Ukraine will be almost invisible from that perspective. China is unlikely to go out of its way to import from a source that's far off the beaten path when it will be so much easier to do business with a trustworthy BRI partner.

Posted by: Cyril | Mar 15 2021 7:30 utc | 130

Grieved | 128

Odds are good that China can still come into Ukraine after all the bullets have fallen to the ground, and the people able to guarantee contracts are settled into place. If there's any of that fabulous black soil left for those bullets to fall into, China can make a deal with whomever rules the surface of it. Even if two factions rule, across a Russia/NATO line, China's commerce can still deal with both sides.

China, uh? How about William Gates buying up all that fertile land, just like he does in the US? Not to make a profit, but to have a way of making sure that all the soy and corn grown on this land is not fed to livestock. Real meat getting scarcer and scarcer, becoming more and more expensive, so that people refrain from consuming it. Denn an SEINEM Wesen soll die Welt genesen. Amen.

Posted by: Scotch Bingeington | Mar 15 2021 9:31 utc | 131

Maria Zakharova tells the Ukronazis where they can go:

"Ukrainian officials remain agitated in the run-up to the seventh anniversary of Crimea’s reunification with Russia. Last week, Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba announced three 'pillars' on which the policy of 'returning' Crimea and Sevastopol to Ukraine would hinge. This implies a new 'de-occupation' strategy, approved by the National Security and Defence Council, the Crimean Platform initiative and the 'reinstatement of international law.'

"It is safe to say that it is impossible to stand for a long time on such shaky 'pillars.' No 'strategies' for working covertly against Crimea’s residents, including sanctions and the water-supply blockade, can win back their trust. No 'platforms' for discussing Kiev’s 'phantom pains' with other countries will convince the people of Crimea to change their decision, made at the 2014 referendum. No discussions of alleged violations of international standards will abolish their legitimate right to self-determination.

"All Kiev’s efforts to return Crimea to Ukraine are illegitimate and cannot be perceived as anything other than a threat of aggression against two regions of the Russian Federation. We would like to recall once again that we will consider the involvement of any countries and organisations in such actions, including the Crimean Platform initiative, as an unfriendly move with regard to the Russian Federation and as a direct encroachment upon its territorial integrity.

"Today, the Kiev authorities are shamelessly trampling upon international law with the support of their Western handlers. Their policy of forced all-out Ukrainisation, the encouragement of neo-Nazism, the violation of the linguistic, cultural and educational rights of ethnic minorities and Russian-speaking citizens, the fight against dissent, the propaganda of Russophobia and media censorship – all this distances Russia’s Crimea and the regions and citizens of Ukraine from Kiev still further.

"We are urging Ukraine and other states supporting Ukrainian 'initiatives' to respect the legitimate choice of Crimean residents and the territorial integrity of the Russian Federation."

The fools don't seem to understand that when you continually try to kill and mistreat people, they won't want to have anything to do with you. And after years of offering nothing but sticks, I doubt carrots--or cookies--will now have any impact.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 15 2021 19:09 utc | 132

he Heads of Diplomatic Missions of Canada and the United Kingdom assured the Minister of Defense of Ukraine of continued comprehensive support and also proposed a concerted information campaign to support Ukraine's Euro-Atlantic aspirations, especially , taking into account, that the the Embassy of Canada and the United Kingdom are a NATO Contact Embassy in Ukraine. At the end of the meeting, Andrii Taran conveyed  greetings to the Minister of National  Defense of Canada Harjit Sajjan and the UK Secretary of State for Defense Ben Wallace, as well as expressed his hope for bilateral meetings in the near future.

Posted by: Jo | Mar 15 2021 22:35 utc | 133

uncle tungsten @ 60

AOC would shame to death if she had voted to support the Catholic Pope! Yet she feel absolutely righteous to support the incarnation of CIA tool Dalai Lama.

AOC is just as bad and dangerous as, if not worse than, the straight right-winger Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio. She and her brand neoliberals are diehard Empire supporters disguised in name of so-called liberal values. AOC & Co are deft at using "human right", "freedom of speech/religion" to attack any country that does not succumb to US Empire.

AOC obviously is not informed that the historical institutional procedure 金瓶掣签(Golden Urn) to confirm the incarnation of a new Dalai Lama.

This selection system was instituted in 1792 by Qing Emperor.

The confirmation and ceremony of current 14th Dalai Lama was taken place under then Central Government run by Kuomingtang, Republic Of China, in 1940.

Posted by: lulu | Mar 15 2021 23:59 utc | 134

Something odd has occurred--NATO has changed its mind: "NATO changes tone: Chief of US-led bloc tells EU officials its members face ‘no imminent military threat’ from Russia or China." But is that really what was meant?

"However, one shouldn’t expect a major shift in NATO’s relations with Moscow and Beijing, as Stoltenberg still lamented what he called 'Russia’s destabilizing behavior' and 'the rise of China' among the main security challenges for the bloc – along with terrorism, cyberattacks and climate change."

The Puke has no sense of history or of what it means for a nation to lose @30 Million people and thousands of square kilometers of infrastructure, while Russia was also well informed about all the plans by the Outlaw Empires to incinerate it prior to NATO's formation. Fortunately, reality's turning the tables and NATO will slowly wither as an unpicked grape to eventually be consumed by a bird.

Posted by: karlof1 | Mar 16 2021 0:31 utc | 135

Russian response to any UkieNazi attack on LPR/DPR will involve activating prepositioned bm21, bm30 forces on its border with Ukraine, in combination with swarms of reconnaissance UAVs and missile carrying UAVs.

It will NOT involve much in the way of tanks or "official" boots on the ground.

It simply will not need to.

Posted by: C4 | Mar 16 2021 1:48 utc | 136

Nor will it likely require any traditional air force fighter/bomber response, so beloved of NATO forces.

Deniability is likely to be one of it's primary concerns. UAVs Glonass + Grads/Smersh should be enough to do the job required.

Unlikely they'd need to be calling out fighterbombers, unless they totally F up by seriously underestimated the capabilities of the UkieNazi forces (which I doubt)

Posted by: C4 | Mar 16 2021 1:55 utc | 137

@134 / 135 lulu.... maybe you are including a link that doesn't work here... otherwise your 2 posts have come thru.. refresh twice.. i see my posts on the 2nd refresh..

Posted by: james | Mar 16 2021 2:29 utc | 138

In this region, RuAF was pretty good intercepting American B-52 bombers etc, they are in high readiness. It may take more than five minutes, but the happy warriors shelling Donbass may face a rain of fire ten minutes later. In when you body is fragmented, satisfaction from the inflicted destruction is gone.

This drill was tried in Georgia. Georgians shelled indiscriminetely Tshinval (capital of South Ossetia, Georgian call it Tshinvali) and few hours later they were facing Russian ground troops that crossed the Caucasus for the occasion (they controlled the key tunnel

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 15 2021 0:26 utc | 125

The reason the Russians needed a rapid airforce plus ground troops response in Georgia was because there was an intervening mountain range on the border between the 2.

That scenario would not apply should there be a UkieNazi ground force attack on LPR/DPR. The terrain favours a much more minimalist game plan of combined UAV & Grad/Smersh artillery response.

At least initially.

Posted by: C4 | Mar 16 2021 2:58 utc | 139

The reason the Russians needed a rapid airforce plus ground troops response in Georgia was because there was an intervening mountain range on the border between the 2.

That scenario would not apply should there be a UkieNazi ground force attack on LPR/DPR. The terrain favours a much more minimalist game plan of combined UAV & Grad/Smersh artillery response.

At least initially.

Posted by: C4 | Mar 16 2021 2:58 utc | 139

If I recall, bombardment by RuAF was quite limited during Georgian war, just enough to limit the movements of Georgian forces. I focused on the facts that a barrage on civilian buildings (a) was followed by quick Russian response, (b) lead to a tepid support of Georgia. I agree that the current situation is different, and not in favor of the putative belligerents in Ukraine.

According to Podolyaka on YouTube, while the front line is manned by two corps of separatist troops of the two republics, there is an unofficial third corps that has the heavy weaponry that is not kept close to the front, in part because of the ceasefire condition, in part because it makes sense to keep a strategic reserve. The front line has ca. 75 troops on each kilometers, they are entrenched and additionally protected by mine fields (as are Ukrainian troops on the other side). Numeric Ukrainian superiority, close to 2 to 1, is not sufficient for an effective attack. That would require bringing in other forces and concentrating them, impossible to hide. A concentrated attack would get a concentrated response.

One reader commented that Ukrainians could go for a rapid destruction in Donbas. Apart from pointlessness, that would force Putin and Russian command to respond in kind, including air force in game changing proportions. Simply put, abandoning ethnic Russians to slaughter would be politically catastrophic, while a decisive defense, and liberation of the ethnic Russian suffering neglect and repressions would be very popular. Western commentators and strategists know it too, in a twisted manner (read the most recent article on that in Politico).

What types of firepower and weapons would enter the picture is secondary. Russia has enough, and the West will not send any rapid response troops or rapid supplies. The more drastic the initial massacre would be, the more territory Russia would get, and the more economic pain would be accepted in Russia -- as we know, sanctions can cause inconvenience, but not hunger etc., cut-off of technological goods can yield domestic import-replacing jobs and spread GDP more evenly.

That said, we observe Ukrainian domestic movements toward militarism and invoking "war rules" to outlaw all opposition to pro-Western rule. Any "pro-Russian" opinion is structured as treason, e.g. recently the national security council announced that will investigate for treason all parliamentary deputies (236 of them) who voted for an agreement in Russia in 2009, and "pro-Russians" got TV channel closed, property "frozen", and extending this course would lead to a type of apartheid: "democracy" in which only certain parties can participate and only certain opinions can be published/broadcast, allowing for vigorous competition among squabbling several political parties. Zelensky and his party may be doomed as a dominant political force, but pro-Western fascists would dominate all approved parties in any case. My guess is that trains loaded with heavy weapons serve the internal goals. Unlike the military victory, internal "political reform" is achievable.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | Mar 16 2021 13:37 utc | 140

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