Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
May 11, 2022

Ukraine - Congress Passes The Bucks, Realism Sneaks In, Poland Plans For More War

After a lot of talk about defeating Russia in the Ukraine and an alleged lack of Russian fighting abilities Congress passed another $40 billion fund for weapons and economic support. That brings the total to some $53 billion for Ukraine.

Most of the money will go to the U.S. weapon industry, the CIA and to various Ukrainian oligarchs. Hardly anything will be received by those in need.

With that packet now passed reality is allowed to sneak into U.S. media reporting on the issue.

Not one but two reports in the New York Times suddenly lament about the huge area of land the Russian troops have taken in east Ukraine:

From the later:

Nonetheless, the Donbas seizure, combined with the Russian invasion’s early success in seizing parts of southern Ukraine adjoining the Crimean peninsula, which Russia illegally annexed in 2014, gives the Kremlin enormous leverage in any future negotiation to halt the conflict.

And the Russians enjoy the added advantage of naval dominance in the Black Sea, the only maritime route for Ukrainian trade, which they have paralyzed with an embargo that could eventually starve Ukraine economically and is already contributing to a global grain shortage.

I have often pointed out that the Ukrainian frontline will have a huge number of casualties from Russian artillery strikes. It is even worse than I had thought:

At the main hospital in Kramatorsk, a city in Donetsk, ambulances stream in day and night, carrying soldiers wounded at the front, who describe being pinned down by near constant shelling.

About 80 percent of the patients are wounded by explosives such as mines and artillery shells, said Capt. Eduard Antonovskyy, the deputy commander of the medical unit at the hospital. Because of this, he said, very few patients have serious injuries. Either you’re far enough from an explosion to survive or you aren’t, he said.

“We either get moderate injuries or deaths,” Captain Antonovskyy said.

Additional to those more realistic reports the NYT allowed one of it authors to write an opinion piece against the widening of the war:

At first, the Western support for Ukraine was mainly designed to defend against the invasion. It is now set on a far grander ambition: to weaken Russia itself. Presented as a common-sense response to Russian aggression, the shift, in fact, amounts to a significant escalation.

By expanding support to Ukraine across the board and shelving any diplomatic effort to stop the fighting, the United States and its allies have greatly increased the danger of an even larger conflict. They are taking a risk far out of step with any realistic strategic gain.
...
When I was in Ukraine during the first weeks of the war, even staunch Ukrainian nationalists expressed views far more pragmatic than those that are routine in America now. Talk of neutral status for Ukraine and internationally monitored plebiscites in Donetsk and Luhansk has been jettisoned in favor of bombast and grandstanding.
...
What’s more, the invasion has led directly to greater military spending in second- and third-tier European powers. The number of NATO troops in Eastern Europe has grown tenfold, and a Nordic expansion of the organization is likely. A general rearmament of Europe is taking place, driven not by desire for autonomy from American power but in service to it. For the United States, this should be success enough. It is unclear what more there is to gain by weakening Russia, beyond fantasies of regime change.
...
Diplomatic efforts ought to be the centerpiece of a new Ukraine strategy. Instead, the war’s boundaries are being expanded and the war itself recast as a struggle between democracy and autocracy, in which the Donbas is the frontier of freedom. This is not just declamatory extravagance. It is reckless. The risks hardly need to be stated.

Indeed. The current U.S. strategy will end in a catastrophe for Ukraine because it is based on false narratives. Lt.Col. (ret) Daniel Davis has consistently provided a more realist view of the military situation in Ukraine. His latest piece fits that record:

Over the past few days, a flurry of senior leaders in both Ukraine and Washington have issued defiant claims of not merely resisting Russian aggression, but pushing towards outright victory. While such aspirations are entirely understandable, it is unwise to set policy seeking a preferred outcome if there does not exist a rational path by which Ukraine could accomplish that objective. At present, most indicators, fundamentals of war, and current battlefield trendlines support the prospect of a Ukrainian defeat.

Davis correctly describes the current military situation on the ground and concludes:

By continuing to seek a military victory in Ukraine, Ukraine’s troops will continue fighting, no negotiated settlement will be realistically sought, and most likely Russian troops continue making progress. As a result, more Ukrainian civilians and troops will continue to be killed and wounded, more cities destroyed, and the economic and food crises – for both Ukraine and the world – will worsen. The most likely outcome will not change (a negotiated settlement, not a Ukrainian military victory), but the cost to Kyiv will be much, much worse.

Another former military man who has a realist view of the war is Col. Douglas Macgregor (ret). During the first Gulf war he led a unit in the Battle of 73 Easting:

Macgregor was the "squadron operations officer who essentially directed the Battle of 73 Easting" during the Gulf War. Facing an Iraqi Republican Guard opponent, he led a contingent consisting of 19 tanks, 26 Bradley Fighting Vehicles and 4 M1064 mortar carriers through the sandstorm to the 73 Easting at roughly 16:18 hours on 26 February 1991 destroyed almost 70 Iraqi armored vehicles with no U.S. casualties in a 23-minute span of the battle.

The previously quoted Lt.Col. Davis was wounded in the same battle. As both men have seen real mechanized war it is not by chance that they have come to similar conclusions.

Macgregor warns of a widening of the war through a Polish intervention in west Ukraine which would eventually drag NATO into the war:

Why would Poland, with the help of Lithuania, try to take western Ukraine? It is all about history:

The Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, formally known as the Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, and, after 1791, as the Commonwealth of Poland, was a country and bi-federation of Poland and Lithuania ruled by a common monarch in real union, who was both King of Poland and Grand Duke of Lithuania. It was one of the largest and most populous countries of 16th to 17th-century Europe. At its largest territorial extent, in the early 17th century, the Commonwealth covered almost 1,000,000 km2 (400,000 sq mi) and as of 1618 sustained a multi-ethnic population of almost 12 million.

Here is how that commonwealth looked on a map with current borders:


bigger

There have been talks for a while that Poland would send a 'peacekeeping' force to occupy Galicia in west-Ukraine. I for one predicted it on February 24, at the very onset of the war:

Thanks to Stalin's additions to the Ukraine three countries, Poland, Hungary and Romania, have claims to certain areas in the Ukraine's western regions. If they want to snatch those up again it is now probably the best time to do so. Despite being part of NATO, which likely would not support such moves, those three will have domestic policy difficulties to withstand the urge.

An official looking document now says that a Polish/Lithuanian operation will start on May 22-24.

Lord Of War @lord_of_war____ - 14:46 UTC · May 10, 2022
🇺🇦🇵🇱The document was sent to the President of the State Border Service of Ukraine, Serhiy Daynek, stating that it is 22-24. May joint "Lithuanian-Polish peacekeeping contingent" consisting of 4 battalions, 9,500 soldiers and 279 units of military equipment  [planned to enter the territory of Ukraine. Another confirmation of the development of plans for the occupation and further division of the country. Even if this particular document turns out to be false (which is not excluded), it does not change the general course of the West in relation to Ukraine.]
picture

9.500 soldiers are way more than fit into 4 battalions. A battalion has typically some 400-800 soldiers. These are more like three small brigades with 3-4 battalions each.

A Polish/Lithuanian move is exactly what Col. Macgregor is warning of:

Ten weeks after the conflict began, it is instructive to re-examine the strategic picture. The war against Russia in Ukraine has evolved, but not in the way Western observers predicted. Ukrainian forces look shattered and exhausted. The supplies reaching Ukrainian troops fighting in Eastern Ukraine are a fraction of what is needed. In most cases, replacements and new weapons are destroyed long before they reach the front.

Confronted with the unambiguous failure of U.S. assistance and the influx of new weapons to rescue Ukrainian forces from certain destruction, the Biden administration is desperate to reverse the situation and save face. Poland seems to offer a way out. More important, Polish President Andrzej Duda and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky have both expressed the desire to erase the borders between Poland and Ukraine.

Unconfirmed reports from Warsaw indicate that after Washington rejected the proposals for a no-fly zone over Ukraine, along with the transfer of Polish MIG-29 aircrafts to Ukrainian pilots, the Polish general staff was quietly instructed to formulate plans for intervention in the Ukrainian conflict by seizing the western part of Ukraine. Naturally, military action of this scale would require Kiev’s approval, but given Washington’s de facto control of the Zelensky government, approval for Polish military intervention should not be a problem.

Presumably, the Biden administration may hope that a collision involving Russians and Poles in any form—including air and missile strikes against Polish forces on the Ukrainian side of the border—would potentially call for the NATO council to meet and address Article V of the NATO treaty.

It would mean that NATO, or at least major parts of it, would actively join the Ukrainian proxy war against Russia. While I believe that Russia has withheld forces from the current war to eventually defend against NATO, any entry of it into the war would significantly extend the fighting and the danger of a nuclear exchange would become imminent.

Posted by b on May 11, 2022 at 15:43 UTC | Permalink

Comments
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Would people quoting Art 5 NATO Charter actually read it !

It is to be read in accordance with Art 51 UN Charger

Have any of you ever made a major claim on insurance and been ovwhelmed by how they could not wait to shower you with a payout ? And that was only money not lives or cities.

Gulf War Germany refused to honour Art 5 if Turkey were attacked by Saddam with rockets

NATO did not help UK in Falklands but Spain worked against UK as did US at political level but Pentagon worked with UK

France unclear and Israel hostile

Art 4 and Art 5 are as aurtomatic as when France reneged on 1925 defence treaty with Czech atMunich 1938 and tried to do same over Poland 1939

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | May 12 2022 2:19 utc | 201

ricardo2000 #190

There are so many possibilities and imponderables, that an 'occupation' of Galicia should be considered a dangerously foolish act.

I guess the cleansing of Galicia can take a while. Most of the nazi extremists will evacuate to europe and infiltrate/subvert those societies as they plan some imaginary form of victorious return or cleansed enclave (see Canada and USA experience of their ghettos). Right now European countries will be extremely anxious of this outcome. Should Poland be so pathetically ridiculous as to attempt such an invasion of west ukraine, the exodus will magnify immediately. All Russia and the liberation forces need do is eradicate the incoming polish/lithuanian force while allowing the outgoing exodus. All good, and easier for the LDR Ukranian team to restore order and statehood to the western sector over time.

I expect that the Donetsk/Lugansk forces will restore their homeland through a day to day police/civil guard process. Perhaps many of those Ukrainian (non nazi) soldiers that surrendered will be part of that force as people will be desperate for jobs and very harsh on the nazi loonies that created the troubles.

IMO Russia will not be dashing about the west ukraine in marked vehicles at all.

So will europe wake up to the dilemma USA creates through a poland expeditionary force? Unlikely.

The parasite they created will be coming home to the maker and in a bad temper.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | May 12 2022 2:21 utc | 202

Lysias@192
I don't disagree. I am not asking anyone to censor or even censure Unz. I am simply saying that the crude racism to be found there makes my flesh creep. As to refuting such stuff, the people in question are not open to logical argument.
Do I really need to tell a man as old as you are all this?

Posted by: bevin | May 12 2022 2:30 utc | 203

WSWS reports that a popular Ukrainian anti-corruption blogger was detained by SBU in Spain, and is now facing deportation for charges of "treason".

"The arrest, which did not even take place on Ukrainian territory, marks a significant escalation in the Ukrainian government’s targeting of political opponents.

Since the beginning of the war, Shariy has been subject to protests and harassment by right-wing thugs outside his home in Spain. Despite living abroad since 2012, Shariy’s address and personal details have been published on Ukraine’s Myrotvorets (Peacemaker) online database of supposed “enemies of the state,” indicating that the campaign against him was being led by the SBU...

Just prior to his arrest, Shariy reported to Mint Press News that he believed the SBU was looking to assassinate him after receiving an obviously staged email from a friend who was looking to pin down Shariy’s daily whereabouts."

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2022/05/12/plrx-m12.html

Posted by: jayc | May 12 2022 2:31 utc | 204

Paul Greenwood #201

Article 5 NATO charter all front and little substance in this situation. There will be no automatic response by NATO blatherers, just more pathetic mumbling. Meanwhile the articles that count are all the dead ones scattered on Ukrainian soil that need prompt burial. The Polish side will need to seek permission from Russia to cross the 'non existent border' and enter Ukraine and recover the fallen should they even bother.

Posted by: uncle tungsten | May 12 2022 2:32 utc | 205

It is now being suggested that NATO might try to take Transnistria and then move to Odessa to 'protect' it. Lots of options to make a bigger mess flying about it seems.

Posted by: the pessimist | May 12 2022 2:41 utc | 206

The hyena is ready to pounce again.

Posted by: Robert Macaire | May 12 2022 2:53 utc | 207

Posted by: Lex | May 11 2022 17:28 utc | 34

Not to mention the creeping publicity of Ukrainian atrocities against Poles with a million plus Ukrainian refugees in Poland.

What is this in reference to? Have there been publicized attacks by Ukrainian "refugees" against Poles in Poland? (Please say it ain't so.)

Posted by: Unnamed | May 12 2022 2:56 utc | 208

Poland moves into western Ukraine, Romania moves into Transnistria, Russia eliminates the Aegis Ashore BMD bases in Poland and Romania, one more Article in the Draft Treaties taken care of.

Posted by: Perimetr | May 12 2022 3:05 utc | 209

@ Lex 173
. ..Just like it was colossally stupid to invade Iraq with an intention to be an occupying power or pour 500,000 men into Vietnam or think that Ukrainian ethno-nationalists could ethnically cleansed Russians in Donbas to extinction.

Why are they stupid if they've gotten rich off it?
That included George Bush's brother BTW.

MajGen Smedley D. Butler, USMC, double recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor, 1935:
"I spent 33 years and 4 months in active service as a member of our country's most agile military force--the Marine Corps. I served in all commissioned ranks from second lieutenant to Major General. And during that period I spent most of my time being a high-class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and for the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer for capitalism. I suspected I was part of a racket all the time. Now I am sure of it. Like all members of the military profession I never had an original thought until I left the service."

The western governments and their allies are now tripping all over themselves enriching themselves, it's no secret, is it.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12 2022 3:21 utc | 210

Russia could pre-empt this move.

Russia could announce it has no interest in Western Ukraine beyond Vinnytsia & Zhytomyr - and invite:

Romanian peacekeepers into Chernivitsi.
Hungarian peacekeepers into Transcarpathia/Zakarpattia
&
Polish peacekeepers into Galicia/Lviv.

If it looks like Russia is arranging this move how do you think Ukrainians will feel about it?

I reckon Ukrainians would HATE it.<\B>

Posted by: Julian | May 12 2022 3:25 utc | 211

Re: Posted by: Cabe | May 11 2022 16:29 utc | 7


Also, the idea of Poland occupying East Galicia with the intention of annexing it is not possible either, because whatever it does, NATO's policy at this point has to be to insist on the absolute sacredness of Ukraine's 1991 boundaries. It can't change the boundaries on the west side while claiming to protect the inviolability of the ones on the east side.

I'm sorry - but you must have been asleep for the last 30 years to say something this stupid.

Why can't they say this?

Who is going to stop them?

Posted by: Julian | May 12 2022 3:31 utc | 212

Re: Posted by: Down South | May 11 2022 17:42 utc | 41

Exactly - it would be very mischievous of the Russians to release a map of Ukraine with a 5 Part Division.

Ukraine "Central"
Russian-controlled Ukraine (South & East)
Polish-controlled Ukraine (West/Galicia)
Romanian-controlled Ukraine (Chernivitsi)
Hungarian-controlled Ukraine (Transcarpathia)

If I were the Russians I'd do it now.

What are the downsides?

It would certainly get the Ukrainians thinking - who exactly are our enemies?

Posted by: Julian | May 12 2022 3:45 utc | 213

Surely Russia has had a number of 'conversations' with the Poles, either through well worn back channels or a red phone or some other mechanism. So, the Poles must know what is in store for them and the conditions under which their nation & lives will go to shit. It will be their call NATO/US/UK notwithstanding.

Posted by: digital dinosaur | May 12 2022 3:56 utc | 214

The Galicians could migrate to Galicia in Spain!
. . .Okay, I'll let myself out.

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 12 2022 3:57 utc | 215

Many people here believe that Russia's only threat to USA/ NATO is nuclear, but you have been brought up in a fools paradise. Russia will destroy any Polish or NATO grouping coming into western Ukraine, with conventional missiles.

The Russians are just waiting for you to give them an excuse to completely destroy Western Ukraine. Poles are simply too racist to ever sit on the borders of Russia.

If the bosses triple down, then all those troops in Europe will be summarily annhilated. If to save face, for god knows who, and launch a nuclear missile at Russia, you will receive many more back. The sanctions war is lost, and the pain sets in.

Posted by: Karl luck | May 12 2022 4:07 utc | 216

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 11 2022 22:01 utc | 149 or Charles Luther Thanos

So let me get this straight. You think that Russia wants to conquer and occupy western Ukraine? For how long?

Also let me get another thing straight. You think that Russia is targeting far-west Ukraine? Please cite examples.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | May 12 2022 4:11 utc | 217

@4 — psycho historian: I guess us lesser intellects will just have to grapple with historico-sociological and economic formations/conceptions in our dim view of the fog that is the world and its various correlations of forces. Here’s a good one for you: Overdetermination. Sneer if you will, it’s from Habermas or one of those loathed creatures of Frankfurt; but say what you will, it’s a good idea in figuring out multiple structural social-economic relationships. So grant us some words and our definitions. Like we grant yours, from the Asimov Foundation Trilogy. Is that Asimov-ism?

Thank you and good regards

Cheers to the flies

Billy

Posted by: Billy the Texas Red | May 12 2022 4:23 utc | 218

@ jayc | May 12 2022 2:31 utc | 204

thanks.. what i have a hard time figuring out is why if the sbu go after someone in spain like this, that they are okay with gonzalo lira continuing on inside ukraine? there is something i am missing in all this... lira being off some royal lineage ain't enough to do it for me..

Posted by: james | May 12 2022 4:24 utc | 219

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 11 2022 21:20 utc | 135


It's well-established in the history of all organizations like the IPCC that
military GHG emissions are explicitly excluded from record-keeping! . . .not to mention the carbon footprint of blowing up so much stuff.


The DOD is the single largest consumer of energy in the US, and in fact, the world's single largest institutional consumer of petroleum. Since 2001, the DOD has consistently consumed between 77 and 80 percent of all US government energy consumption.

LINK:
https://watson.brown.edu/costsofwar/files/cow/imce/papers/Pentagon%20Fuel%20Use%2C%20Climate%20Change%20and%20the%20Costs%20of%20War%20Revised%20November%202019%20Crawford.pdf

How much fossil fuel is consumed by the US government?
The Department of Defense uses 4,600,000,000 US gallons (1.7×1010 L) of fuel annually, an average of 12,600,000 US gallons (48,000,000 L) of fuel per day. A large Army division may use about 6,000 US gallons (23,000 L) per day.

Detailed stats on USG energy sources and departmental use:
https://www.bts.gov/content/us-government-energy-consumption-agency-and-source

A lot of those poison fish going around.
Enough for at least one lifetime.

Posted by: Sushi | May 12 2022 4:30 utc | 220

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | May 12 2022 4:11 utc | 217
"You think that Russia wants to conquer and occupy western Ukraine? For how long?"

I believe Russia intends to place strategic missiles in Ukraine and Belarus to counter the ones in Poland and Romania. These missiles need to be as far west as possible, i.e., right on the borders (or relatively near to them). In addition, leaving ANY sort of "rump Ukraine" behind simply means NATO moves in and then official NATO is CLOSER to Russia than it is now.

"You think that Russia is targeting far-west Ukraine? Please cite examples."

It's hit Lviv several times. Were you not paying attention?

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 4:38 utc | 221

@ tom... re western ukraine.. it is true what richard says, although the missiles they fired to take out mercenaries, oil hubs and etc, were all strategic in nature... so take it fwiw.. at present russia is focused on the donbass... no one knows what russias plans are moving forward.. we will have to wait and see..

Posted by: james | May 12 2022 4:42 utc | 222

I don’t think Poland would enter Galicia without Russia’s tacit agreement. That’s if they’re smart about it which I guess can’t be taken for granted.

Posted by: Phil | May 12 2022 4:59 utc | 223

Posted by: darren price | May 11 2022 19:32 utc | 102

I am going to say something else that will be unpopular here. Namely that in wartime every side exaggerates their opponents losses and bigs up their own achievements. Russian war propaganda is not nearly as egregious and unhinged as the stuff being produced by and for Ukraine but only a fool would take it completely at face value. Sorry, there is no kinder way of putting that. Where there is war there is propaganda. That's just a truism and has nothing to do with where one's sympathies lie.

Truth IS the Russian propaganda. Or counter-propaganda, however you want to view it. Is it 100% accurate? Unlikely. But the fact that UkieUS rarely even tries to refute it except with Monty-Pythonesque absurdity ('tis just a flesh wound!) reinforces the validity of official Russian claims.

Posted by: The Owl | May 12 2022 5:00 utc | 224

From Sputnik News Telegram channel...https://t.me/sputnik/3711

The number of foreign military personnel in Poland and the Baltic States has doubled since 2020 – Head of the Security Council of Belarus

"Currently, more than 20 thousand foreign servicemen equipped with modern shock weapons are deployed in Poland and the Baltic States," Alexander Volfovich said in an interview with the National Defense magazine.

The NATO aviation reinforcement group currently has more than 90 aircraft, about 40 of them are based in Poland and the Baltic states, Wolfovich noted.

"Compared to 2020, the aviation reinforcement grouping has been increased in Europe by more than four and a half times, in Poland and the Baltic States – by more than two and a half times," the head of the Security Council of Belarus said.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 5:03 utc | 225

From Rybar Telegram channel...

The main results of the SVO in Ukraine for May 11, 2022

The Armed Forces of Ukraine launched an artillery strike on the Russian village of Solokhi. There are reports of dead and wounded.

For the offensive in the direction of Cossack Lopan in the Sumy and Kharkiv regions, forced mobilization is underway. According to unconfirmed information, the Armed Forces of Ukraine have reached the administrative borders of the Belgorod region in the direction of Nekhoteevka.

In Dolgenkiy, the Armed Forces of Ukraine attempted to stage the use of chemical weapons by units of the RF Armed Forces. [MY NOTE: There are pictures on various Telegram channel showing a huge cloud of what is alleged to be ammonium nitrate. A tanker truck supposedly was brought in, was detected by a Russian UAV, and it was blown up - not sure by who - releasing a large orange-colored cloud.]

The allied troops cut the grouping of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, taking Novoselovka. Fighting resumed in Shandrigolovo. South of Yampol, the Armed Forces of Ukraine retreated due to losses.

Reports about the collapse of the enemy defenses north of Popasnaya, part of the forces retreated in the direction of Loskutovka. The Armed Forces of Ukraine are strengthening near Gorsky, waiting for the breakthrough of the defensive lines near Orekhovo.
#video #digest #Ros

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 5:16 utc | 226

@ Billy the Texas Red | May 12 2022 4:23 utc | 218 who suggested I ponder Overdetermination in relation to my request for more reality and less myth in comments

Overdetermination
in psychoanalytic theory, the concept that several unconscious factors may combine to produce one symptom, disorder, or aspect of behavior.

I am struggling to understand the connection. You wrote
"
it’s a good idea in figuring out multiple structural social-economic relationships. So grant us some words and our definitions.
"
Please clarify.

My moniker connection to Asimov is not because Isaac wrote anything about public/private finance but the psychohistorian character Isaac Asimov created in the Foundations series is trying to reduce the time that humanity spends in this one epoch and I am a meatsack butterfly wildly flapping its wings to try and reduce the time that humanity spends under the jackboot of the God of Mammon cult by at least one iota, if possible.....hardly an "ism" but you can believe my "religion" if you want....grin

The only thought I might have to add value to the Ukraine discussion is that whatever happens in Ukraine will be used as the reason the world economy is collapsing instead of discussing the conflict in social systems (public/private finance) directly.

Yes, I focus on the reality I see and am frustrated by those who chose to obfuscate that reality with socio-economic relationship myth.
And I am happy to see that the majority of the planet seems to be focused on the same problem that I see even though they don't call it out like I do as the God of Mammon cult

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 12 2022 5:19 utc | 227

Congrats to Poland on signing up to follow in Ukraine's footsteps. Stereotypes aren't stereotypes for nothing.

I wonder if one of the Baltics will join in too, take advantage of the opportunity for masochism. Finland ?

Posted by: Featherless | May 12 2022 5:29 utc | 228

In regard to those who thought my comment about the Snake Island battle being a "PR" exercise to rain on Russia's Victory Day parade was incorrect, the Russian MoD released a bulletin, reported on by Mercouris, and I've seen it elsewhere, that the Ukrainian generals on the General Staff did in fact recommend against conducting the operation but they were overridden by Zelenskyy, also reportedly on British advice. In other words, it was a political decision, not a military one.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 5:33 utc | 229

The tunnel from which those trapped in the Azovstal plant got water from the river has been blocked.

https://johnplatinumgoss.com/2022/05/12/azovstal-tunnel-blocked/

Posted by: John Goss | May 12 2022 5:58 utc | 230

@ james 219 - I think Anatoly Shariy, the Ukrainian blogger in Spain, left Ukraine in 2014 right after Maidan.
I am pretty sure if he remained he would be treated a bit differently than G Lira by the SBU. I have heard that Spanish authorities have realesed him. He went there for political asylum I think. I might not have it all correct.

Posted by: lex talionis | May 12 2022 6:01 utc | 231

Re: Polish occupation of Galicia in west-Ukraine.

But is this necessarily a problem for Russia? Clearly Ukraine will collapse at some point, economically, politically and certainly militarily (if not already, it's basically managed by 3rd parties at this stage). There's no indication of Russia being interested in managing or rebuilding the whole of Ukraine with certainly in the Galicia region only trouble for any military presence.

The rumors seem to be "post-war" planning of carving up of Ukraine. A new "iron curtain" will be drawn close. This will be the topic of the upcoming talks of a treaty. Which will include the status of Ukraine as independent territory with statehood. With the prices being payed Russia is not going to return any gains. Big question right now: what about Odessa? The US seems to be hell bend on raising the ticket price for that.

Posted by: John Dowser | May 12 2022 6:02 utc | 232

@ Psychohistorian, Linda Wood, karlof1, James and others.

Thanks for the kind words. Like you I think it's time to start calling this as it is. Russia is raining on the West's cosy black-ops parade in Ukraine where old-fashioned criminal scams are concealed under layers of misdirection ("hey let's put Nazi symbols on their uniforms, it'll keep everyone guessing and the skinheads we hired will dig it"). But there is something really archaic about it all: think about what Cicero disclosed about Verres' operation in Sicily in the 70s BC, or even before that how Italian tax-farmers were allowed to do what they like in the province of Asia—until the locals had enough and called in Mithridates. The scams are as old as the hills: slavery, theft, extortion, rackets, land-grabs, forced migration. The genius of the western psyop is to have its public smell shit and say its roses.

Linda Wood: I agree about the child-exploitation. That alone must be an immense operation with many dimensions—blackmail, extortion, laundering. But the suffering inflicted on thousands of girls is a crime without justice. Unless Russia can lay hands on the evidence. Wouldn't that be a dossier worth publishing online.

What's also important is that this is not imperialism. Empire, as Virgil points out, is knowing how to rule. The US doesn't know how to rule (systematic failure since the Philippines in the 19th century); the UK did once (kinda) but lost it definitively during/after the Great War; the West Europeans, no—they know how to run extractive outposts (perhaps the Spanish/Portuguese/Dutch back in the 16-18th c knew).

Russia? Well, perhaps yes. They could well be the real imperialists here, and I'm not using that as a pejorative. Empire is not a bad thing per se. Rome was good at it until c.200 BC, then sucked at it until Pompey and Cato started thinking about what a real trans-Mediterranean polity might be like if it was properly managed. That is, without the criminal, under-the-table, extortionate theft. Rome's elite fell out over it. They were forced to accept it by Augustus. The US will never get to that point, at least not in our lifetimes. They don't rule, they do whatever the inverse is, un-rule, not even 'creating a desert and calling it peace' as Tacitus said, but just creating a desert. Failed states is all NATO foreign intervention can achieve. It's even failing the states of its own members. Orban can see that, and so did a significant number of the French.

Russia knows how to rule. I agree with those who say that Russia should invite participants from their old East bloc allies to balkanise Ukraine. But whatever they do, it will result in normal Ukrainians experiencing some half-decent governance for a change, an improvement in their standard of living, and real support from a hegemonic ally that doesn't want them to fail.

Those idiots who say 'I stand with Ukraine' don't seem to realise that Russia does too. Maybe more than all the rest put together.

Posted by: Patroklos | May 12 2022 6:06 utc | 233

Posted by: John Dowser | May 12 2022 6:02 utc | 232
"There's no indication of Russia being interested in managing or rebuilding the whole of Ukraine with certainly in the Galicia region only trouble for any military presence."

I'll reiterate once again for those who haven't heard it before: No one - including me - knows the ultimate objectives (on the ground) of the Ukrainian SMO except Putin and his team and the General Staff.

Further, no one knows whether or not Russia - or a replaced Ukrainian state - can gain and maintain control of Western Ukraine.

Read my lips (famous Bush phrase): No one.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 6:09 utc | 234

@ Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 5:33 utc | 229

Zelensky overriding the General Staff also means USA having it's way, I have no doubt. Sometimes people speak of Zelensky as if he has agency in his own or his office's name. Well, that's an interesting question for me to ponder: When he embarrasses himself and Ukraine with his disrespect toward the Greek and Israeli parliaments, is he doing so following his own judgement, or is Empire more or less steering every detail in Zelensky's ongoing crucifixion of Ukraine?

I'd be interested in your opinion. I'm inclined to think that stupidity at Zelenskian heights must have originated in Washington DC, where we distill arrogant idiocy up to 180 proof.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 12 2022 6:12 utc | 235

Posted by: Patroklos | May 12 2022 6:06 utc | 233
"Russia knows how to rule. I agree with those who say that Russia should invite participants from their old East bloc allies to balkanise Ukraine. But whatever they do, it will result in normal Ukrainians experiencing some half-decent governance for a change, an improvement in their standard of living, and real support from a hegemonic ally that doesn't want them to fail. Those idiots who say 'I stand with Ukraine' don't seem to realise that Russia does too. Maybe more than all the rest put together."

I agree. Russia knows how to rule (and I say that as an anarchist). Which is why they don't need to "balkanize Ukraine" or fear some Galician nationalists, like everyone with no imagination believes. I've outlined in the past here how Russia can achieve its security requirements in Ukraine. It's no different than all the other places the Soviet Union held in thrall for the better part of a hundred years, not to mention previous versions of the Russian Empire, as well as more recent examples like Chechnya and its operations in Syria. Was there anyone more hostile to Russia than Chechnya, against which Russia fought two wars?

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 6:16 utc | 236

Kravchuk in his newly-created role as President of what had been the Ukrainian SSR forgot to define the borders of the carve-out from the USSR. He signed the Lisbon Agreement to surrender USSR nuclear weapons to the legally-recognised successor state Russian Federation and in return did not assume the Ukrainian share of USSR Debt obligations and received huge offsets and subsidies from Russian Federation.

Apparently noone bothered to define borders either with Russian Federation or UN and no boundaries were registered.

On what basis did Ukraine propose to define its territorial claims - since they could in law be no more than claims open to dispute ?

Biden may have problems defining the border between Mexico and its former territory Texas, but he asserts a claim to Ukrainian borders which simply does not exist in international law

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | May 12 2022 6:19 utc | 237

Posted by: uncle tungsten | May 12 2022 2:32 utc | 205

You cannot seriously think Poland is going to operate as Funeral Director for foreign nationals in a foreign country ????????!!!!!!!!!!!!

That is so fatuous.

Indeed it is why you know Covid was a fraud. At no stage were any plans made clear for removal of hundreds of thousands of corpses littering the streets. Come to think of it, no-one considers how to remove carcases after a nuclear strike. Do you use bulldozers and incinerate them ?

In Khrushchev's Memoirs he mentions how they stacked up German war dead after Stalingrad and incinerated them.

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | May 12 2022 6:26 utc | 238

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 12 2022 6:12 utc | 235

Well, the Russian MoD blamed Snake Island on the British, as Mercouris notes today, although he's not convinced, alleging that Russia seems to blame the Brits for things first. I don't know if that's true, but it's not unreasonable. Certainly the Brits are deeply embedded in Ukraine right along with the US, since they are the US' poodle.

I do think, with Mercouris, that Zelenskyy is arrogant enough and petty enough (look at his treatment of Germany's Steinmeier for petty) to go for a plan that was mostly PR, since he's from entertainment. However, I suspect that Arestovich, the propaganda chief, actually came up with the idea, Zelenskyy ran it by the US and Brits, they happily green-lighted it, and he went ahead despite opposition from his General Staff who couldn't see any likelihood of success for such a paltry reason.

The excuses we hear in these threads that Snake Island is important for not allowing the Russians to see weapons shipments to Odessa I think are pure speculation. No matter what the Ukrainians might do on that island, it's not going to stop Russian interdiction of weapons shipments. And if the island were used against the Black Sea Fleet, as others have noted it wouldn't last long against a missile barrage or air strikes, followed by shelling from that fleet. So the Ukrainian General Staff were right to complain. It was an idiotic plan which turned into "a debacle" (to use Mercouris' favorite term) for no good reason.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 6:27 utc | 239

James Tweedle's perplexity, matching my own -- except I'm not yet grokking the reference to "a frontal assault on a mountain pass"...

Pouring random assortments of arms into a country and expecting it to win against a well-organised and equipped opponent is just as incoherent a strategy as the war of attrition the US waged in Vietnam, or sending a whole army into a frontal assault on a mountain pass defended by a thousand.

Who is going to operate all this stuff if most of the experienced weapon and vehicle crews have become casualties or prisoners? How is it even supposed to get to the front when Russia has air superiority over the country and stand-off weapons that can reach right out to the border with Poland and kill hundreds of foreign mercenaries?

https://thesaker.is/nothing-to-celebrate/

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 12 2022 6:28 utc | 240

This looks as though Russian will be halting gas sales to unfriendly countries


https://www.usnews.com/news/top-news/articles/2022-05-11/russia-puts-sanctions-on-gazprom-units-in-europe-and-u-s-part-owner-of-pipeline
Moscow has imposed sanctions on the owner of the Polish part of the Yamal pipeline that carries Russian gas to Europe, as well as the former German unit of the Russian gas producer Gazprom, whose subsidiaries service Europe's gas consumption.

The entities on a list of affected firms on a Russian government website http://publication.pravo.gov.ru/SignatoryAuthority/government on Wednesday were largely based in countries that have imposed sanctions on Russia in response to its invasion of Ukraine, most of them members of the European Union.

The decree and list of sanctioned entities here. First two pages are the decree, last two pages the list of entities.
http://publication.pravo.gov.ru/Document/View/000120220511001

Posted by: Peter AU1 | May 12 2022 6:29 utc | 241

@ Patroklos | May 12 2022 6:06 utc | 233 with the follow up

Thanks for that. I agree with most of what you say but see the opportunity to break out of the Might-Makes-Right social organization paradigm at this moment in humanities history....which your Russia empire would continue.

This is not Rome, even though there are many similarities as you point out. What I see as significantly different is the emerging influence of China in geo-politics. This influence is one which Russia I think understands and believes in as a path "from barbarism to socialism".

A multipolar world is a nice idea that has yet to have much history behind it. I hope humanity gets a chance to evolve into the concept.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 12 2022 6:36 utc | 242

Ground war=logistics and supply lines, and with air dominance there can be only one winner with its warehouses next door, Russia. The great satan is expending Ukrainian lives as cannon fodder for nothing.

Posted by: Anon | May 12 2022 6:39 utc | 243

It was an idiotic plan which turned into "a debacle"
Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 6:27 utc | 239

I was only momentarily a visitor to NATO's military (in what's called "K-town") -- actually just an Army Band there, a hundred years ago -- but it seems to me there's an implied contract between all commanders and all soldiers -- that lives of the latter will not be tossed away like shipping peanuts sacrificed for non-military objectives. I'm talking about a venerable contract. For instance: The discipline of Napoleon's troops was held together by general confidence Napoleon knew what he was doing, imho.

Conversely, it must be devastating for the morale of Ukrainian troops to see such vain, meaningless sacrifice. How long can a people sustain such insults?

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 12 2022 6:42 utc | 244

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 12 2022 6:42 utc | 244

And we're seeing crap morale on the part of Ukrainians. I read something, can't remember if I posted it, about these Territorial units being sent to the front, most of them are deserting. And with the commanders of many of Ukraine's units simply abandoning their men, as many prisoners have said, clearly morale is down the tubes. Which is why, as those 60,000 in Donbass are being hammered and sustaining massive losses, that suddenly they will snap and surrender en mass. As Ritter says, armies resist and resist...until they don't. And it's sudden. The Donbass war could be over in a few days or a week instead of a month.

OTOH the one "surprise" that Martyanov says occurred to the Russians was how "brainwashed" the Ukrainian military is. That and the fear that the Russians will execute them if captured, as many prisoners have said they were told. That is probably all that is holding the Ukrainians together at this point. Which is why the Russians let prisoners call home to tell their relatives how well they're being treated - it's a subversion ploy. The Russians know this will get around, if not at the front, then in the rear.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 7:04 utc | 245

if not at the front, then in the rear
Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 7:04 utc | 246

Great line, and great reporting today, as usual, from RSH.

I've said my own goal in life, as well as my goal in what I choose to read and write, is deepening spatio-temporal orientation -- getting to know something about where and when I stand, on history's stage. Some hardcore materialists, here in this bar, get the heebie-jeebies when Russian commentators (for instance, at the Saker) mix religious references into their analysis of this war. For me, such shading of the eyes just seems unfortunate for the looker. I see the spiritual journey of Homo sapiens on planet Earth as a central historical thread which some people shy away from purely for aesthetic reasons. Like folks who don't care for artichokes. What a shame: artichokes are fabulous!

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 12 2022 7:30 utc | 246

Posted by Aleph Null| 135

Posted by Sushi 220

“It´s wll etablished in the history of all organisations like the IPCC that military GHG explicity excluded from record-keeping...not to mention the carbon footprint of blowing up stuff.”

No wonder why, if the Greta-generation becomes aware of that war and warindustry can be linked with climatechange, there will be huge antiwar-demonstrations in the world and the end of Nato.Let´s hope it happens soon. And when the Greta-generation understands that you have get the workingclass with you, it will be the end of the 1%´s capitalism.Some of the youth are already on the trail, they are talking about profit and capital accumulation.

Posted by: Northern Eve | May 12 2022 7:32 utc | 247

Posted by: Patroklos | May 12 2022 6:06 utc | 234

"Those idiots who say 'I stand with Ukraine' don't seem to realise that Russia does too."

There it is. Quote of the day!

Thanks for that and your posts (21:54 utc | 147).

Posted by: waynorinorway | May 12 2022 7:33 utc | 248

A multipolar world is a nice idea that has yet to have much history behind it. I hope humanity gets a chance to evolve into the concept.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 12 2022 6:36 utc | 243

Yes agree and with the rest of your post as well. Also that China brings an entirely new opportunity for cooperation and non Imperialism. I don't wish for a new Russian Empire, and I don't think Russia wants or needs it either. But events may change that.

I wasn't sure what to make of your earlier "ism" post. For me it's good enough that China and the other Communist countries self describe as Communism and Socialism to refer to these "isms" in a practical non theoretical way. Firstly I am not qualified or interested in being a theoretical scholar of Marx and secondly I'm more interested in how different communist and socialist countries practically apply and adapt his theories under differing world pressures and in different cultural settings. Obviously so far Marxism has been easier to implement in the already collectivist non western countries.

Posted by: K | May 12 2022 7:45 utc | 249

huge antiwar-demonstrations in the world and the end of Nato
Posted by: Northern Eve | May 12 2022 7:32 utc | 248

Ah yes, Greta. I'm afraid to look up whether GT herself has maintained a discipline of keeping truthful, beneath this Niagara Falls of genocidal Russophobic lies. I've had so many disappointments from my elders lately -- it's reasonable to expect similar confusion in younger folks.

Only more so, possibly. In my experience working for a few years with the Richmond Progressive Alliance, we got uncomfortably age-stratified -- it felt like to me. Worried about attracting younger folks to RPA to keep it going, but young folks don't have any time for stuff like neighborhood canvassing, for crying out loud! Trying to identify the issues in Richmond which matter most to younger folks, if we can get them to put away their devices for a microsecond...

The world I inhabit does not much resemble the one in which I grew up. Nearly everyone, these days, has some kind of device virtually implanted on their person. A new limb. Has this brave new world of "social media" opened up new routes for activism, or rather closed off hope entirely, underneath a blanket of stifling conformity?

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 12 2022 8:03 utc | 250

NATO will see benefit of entering as they will move the supply lines closer to the front. Any initial losses that may be incurred while moving in will at a given moment be less than the long term benefit of attacking and weakening Russias borders.

Posted by: alek_a | May 12 2022 8:06 utc | 251

I see the spiritual journey of Homo sapiens on planet Earth as a central historical thread which some people shy away from purely for aesthetic reasons. Like folks who don't care for artichokes. What a shame: artichokes are fabulous!

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 12 2022 7:30 utc | 247

Ditto on all points. Regarding the spiritual I find this the most aesthetic of all but also the most challenging definitely not for the faint hearted.
Artichokes funny:)
But ahhh Artichokes! The best ever was at a tiny Italian restaurant, crumbed and panfried, served with the most delicious light sauce tasting of celery. I tried in vain to replicate that recipe. Every way Italians use artichokes is great or just steamed with a sprinkle of salt and butter. I even grow them successfully every so often, they are related to Sunflowers and Thistles.

Posted by: K | May 12 2022 8:39 utc | 252

K | May 12 2022 8:39 utc | 253
“---they are related to Sunflowers and Thistles."
Ähm, no, they are thistles. And they are like medicine for your liver is prepared right (for bioavailability).

Posted by: Hausmeister | May 12 2022 8:48 utc | 253

Posted by: alek_a | May 12 2022 8:06 utc | 252

Good luck with that.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 9:18 utc | 254

Ähm, no, they are thistles. And they are like medicine for your liver is prepared right (for bioavailability).
Posted by: Hausmeister | May 12 2022 8:48 utc | 254

Splitting thistles Hausmeister :) but thanks.
I never think about their herbal properties since they are so delicious, how do you prepare them medicinally? I guess Milk Thistle is a liver herb isn't it.

Posted by: K | May 12 2022 9:21 utc | 255

Listening to The Duran live stream from Monday...the two Alexs plus lawyer Robert Barnes who is currently ranting big time over how this whole Ukraine thing is going to bury the Democrats in the midterms unless they somehow can provoke Russia to attack the US somehow...which won't work because Putin is not as stupid as Biden. Definitely worth the listen although it is two-and-a-half hours long.

Russia, NATO, and Biden's 'inflection point' w_Robert Barnes (LIVE)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IgWWJCVSFf0

He even referenced the guy at the Survival Russia channel, a survivalist I used to follow on Youtube, who apparently has reported that he doesn't see any inflation in Russia, just stuff from Europe has gotten expensive but not Russian stuff. (He's actually Danish IIRC who just lives out in a forest in Russia.)

Barnes is like Pepe Escobar - he seems to know everything if not as much everyone like Pepe does.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 9:23 utc | 256

@ 206 pessimist
"Moving to Odessa and try to take it". Stop posting such nonsense, even as science fiction it is unbelievable. Bahhh! An attack there would mean an end to the world as we know it, instead another proxy war somewhere, where the Evil Empire, can foment some kind of civil unrest to have a colour revolution. That is absolutely possible, it is a certainty.
The US is a spent force, as is Natzo, all pussies, very few real men. Way back, 50 years ago, to be precise 1977, things were different, few pussy conscripts, most were artisans or just ordinary "working class", they had stamina, knew how to hang on, and helped each other in time of crisis. 50 km march in combat gear is something you have to train for, or 20 km cross-country infiltration "sneak", where every single object your platoon had, was carried, have a go with the body of a "Ma Deuce", a few kilometres, you are not joking any more. But a mate would take over, and then another.
Those marches were endurance tests, a test of if you could make people work together coherently as a unit, and still be combat capable.
In 1978-1979 the southern parts of Denmark were completely buried in snow, us NGO's were called from X-mas leave, and functioned non stop as, telephone men, radio men, as were called in 3 companies to act as relief to civilians. I got a call up too, I had a red page in my soldier book, (first to call) like all other NCO's, so on the 1 of January, the telephone rang. Off I went, by train, but alas, in Næstved it was not possible to go further. But our army the could think, and there was a row of m113's ready to pick us up. Those 28 km was torture, cramped, diesel smelly, and rocking here and there, most of us got more ore less sea sick. But the commander allowed us to on shift put our heads out. Nice chap btw.
So we arrived, got kitted up in, battle uniform (model m1958), handed a plate with a Sirloin steak, friers and all! WoW best army food ever! (An empty Resort nearby had handed voluntarily all their supplies over to the army free of charge, to the army else it would spoil :) No red wine though!
As more people trickled in, peep's went to their proper units, and I was assigned to a m113 (I never had been in one really) to deliver emergency supplies, which became increasingly possible as the roads were cleared, so now I was commander of a vehicle, I knew crap about and which made me seasick! Fortunately, the commander and driver had their heads outside, so it went ok.
Later I asked my company boss if I could have added, to my file that I was now, cable as a car commander of the m113, which he did.
That was rather a nostalgic write, seems to prove most guys that do service, never forgets, the friends, the camaraderie, the good times and the bad times.

Posted by: Den Lille Abe | May 12 2022 9:51 utc | 257

Posted by Aleph_Null 251

Greta is too young, and too politically uneducated to understand everything, and she has made mistakes, as we all have on our way to political awareness. But it was good to see that an invitation to a demonstration for Fridays for Future included words like profit and growth. Greta and the young generation know that their future is at stake, young workers too.

You write about Richmond Progressive Alliance and I glanced at the website that says ….to build a a strong progressive movement in Richmond, on where people support each other”

I believe that we have to join groups whose head question is climate change, as Fridays for Future. The young people in the climate movements are maturing, and we can support them with our our experiences of “stuff like neighborhood canvassing” and our experiences of extra-parliamentary methods.

Posted by: Northern Eve | May 12 2022 10:16 utc | 258

Ok the Poles - who fought Nazis- are owed for having been suckered by their ‘allies’ US and U.K. in WW2 who were forced by the great survival of the Russian peoples to comeback after so many millions were killed.

So yes they ought to get some of their ‘ancient lands’ it awould not going to be Belorussia or Lithuania , these people have their rights. The Galician Ukes have made their bed and are going to have to lay in it now. But they will have to pay a greater price than just losing the Russian eastern parts.
They will have to give up the pipelines coming from Russia and transiting to Poland and Hungary.

The Poles will pick up Billions from Russian gas and Oil flowing through these pipes to the rest of Europe.
NS1 shutting was already on the cards, it is old and need of major maintenance/upgrade.
NS2 WILL be supplying Germany.

Germans will not be played off against Russia again and both lose more of their wealth and millions of their peoples once again, for the benefit of the ancient Empire and its Owners. It is impossible to destroy the large fraction of the populations with war now - MAD assures that - hence the biologicals.
The Slave Owners know it and have long planned their fight. It ain’t going to plan A.
Time for the world to tell the Fed, IMF and WB to do one and sue if they expect any of their onerous loans repaid!

Fuck the fetid empire and its wankers - a jubilee will be imposed and the mighty ancients will be dispossessed of their countries, castles and slaves finally after millennia.

Only China and Russia and the nwo will be leading the development of Space the next frontier.

Posted by: DunGroanin | May 12 2022 10:30 utc | 259

Russia would cut off Polands gas, the Polish economy, heavily dependent on Russian gas, would soon implode. There’s no substitute available.

Currently Poland gets redirected gas from Germany to pretend to be ‚principled‘ (Finland plays the same childish game). Russia would just reduce gas deliveries to the EU by let’s say 50%, with catastrophic consequences within months.

US military bases in Europe depend on Russian gas too, by the way.

Posted by: Wolf | May 12 2022 10:31 utc | 260

In response to lex talionis@232,

He fled from, what he calls, politically motivated criminal charges against him years before the Maidan protests. Around 2010-2012 perhaps? Iirc he was charged with murder where the victim was alive, and destruction of private property of his own car.

This was during Yanukovich's presidential term, though I doubt it had anything to do with him directly. Shariy was making a name for himself by doing reporting on underground gambling rings -- he was himself a gambling addict at one point, so I guess that was his attempt at redemption -- and these enterprises obviously involved a heavy criminal element which, unsurprisingly, had mutually beneficial relationships with legislative, police and political branches.

Neo-nazi gangs in Ukraine, before attaining political power and being integrated into the mil-security apparatus in 2015, ran illegal businesses like it is done in any country -- gambling, drugs, weapons, forged documents, people smuggling and so on. These businesses provided kickbacks to crooked politicians and law enforcement. The gangs also had a working relationship with the SBU, which used them to carry out clandestine operations, and it badly needed that kind of manpower pool since the SBU itself sold its various services to wealthy clients; assassinations, shakedowns and so on. On the flip-side, it protected its Neo-nazi assets in order to protect itself.

The public vaguely knew about this arrangement and knew not to mess with it. Investigative reporting into any large-scale criminal activity ran the risk of turning into a self-imposed death sentence for journalists, but usually they were first given a warning in the form of threats and criminal cases. Shariy did the right thing in gtfo.

Having said all that, I doubt he himself is particularly clean. He has or had access to sources that leaked materials from inside courts, ministry of the interior, SBU and military intelligence, which I believe implies that he was working as part of an organization. Although he's generally labeled as a Russian front by his Ukro-nationalist critics, it's far more plausible that he's information-clearing for some Ukrainian faction sufficiently close to the centers of power, but not at the very top of them. Although the information he has provided over the years generally appears factual, and he probably does a lot of work as an independent, one should keep in mind that there's also an organization at work here.

Maybe this is a bit off topic, but I think these sort of tidbits help to flesh out the overall Ukrainian situation. There's always a desire to simplify the image one presents of state operation, whether it's the US, Russia or Ukraine, as if these are monolithic constructs operating under a single will. I think the reality is closer to a dog being ridden by fleas, stumbling left or right in response to where the bites itch the most.

Posted by: Skiffer | May 12 2022 11:42 utc | 261

Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 9:23 utc | 257

Thanks. that was excellent. Barns on the Biden admin needing a false flag. Poland may well go into Galicia. The obvious place for a major false flag would the be in Poland.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | May 12 2022 12:13 utc | 262

I believe that the Smolensk crash was due to the flight crew relying on their radio altimeter in bad weather. The Smolensk (military) airport also has a large crater preceding the end of the airport that they wwer approaching from.It was also implied that pressure was put on the flight crew to land by political operatives in the delegation, and someone other than the flight crew was also in the cockpit on the approach.
https://aviation-safety.net/database/record.php?id=20100410-0

Posted by: Petar Mrkonjic | May 12 2022 12:20 utc | 263

Posted by: Petri Krohn | May 11 2022 16:07 utc | 2

Reading Colonel Cassad I got the impression "mines" referred to mortars.

Posted by: Dadda | May 12 2022 12:25 utc | 264

Just because lots of money was made in Iraq doesn’t mean that lots more money could have been made if the territory had been stabilized. Remember, the stated goal was then on to Iran. But the US couldn’t go on to Iran with the situation as it was in Iraq.

Posted by: Lex | May 12 2022 12:30 utc | 265

43
Can't believe a black is going yo fight for those Nazis.
He will not come back if he is truly there.
There is a post on telegram where the Nazis excecute the non white allies.

Posted by: Two-face | May 12 2022 12:52 utc | 266

"Also let me get another thing straight. You think that Russia is targeting far-west Ukraine? Please cite examples.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | May 12 2022 4:11 utc | 218
____

"It's hit Lviv several times. Were you not paying attention?"

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 4:38 utc | 222
___

Tom, Warsaw, and Washington also seem forgotten RF strikes on Yaroiv near the Polish border, but that was so long ago --- almost 30 days --- it's already been effectively memory-holed.

https://www.presstv.ir/Detail/2022/03/13/678501/Russia-180-foreign-mercenaries-killed-Ukraine

"high-precision long-range weapons were used to strike the training centers of the Ukrainian armed forces at Yavoriv and a separate facility in the village of Starichi.
...
"Russia says up to 180 “foreign mercenaries” have been killed in an attack it conducted against the Yavoriv training facility in western Ukraine, adding that the attack also destroyed a large amount of weapons that came from other countries."


Posted by: Doug Hillman | May 12 2022 13:02 utc | 267

You may not trigger art. 5, unless you were attacked on your own soil (ships are considered pieces of soil floating around).
So Poland suffering casualties in troops sent outside Poland without a Nato mandate, would not be eligible for art. 5 assistance anyway.

Posted by: Giovanni Dall'Orto | May 12 2022 13:09 utc | 268

Finland has just announced that they are applying to NATO immediately. Interesting times lie ahead now. http://www.presidentti.fi

"During the spring, there has been an important discussion about Finland's possible NATO membership. Time has been needed for domestic position formation both in Parliament and in society as a whole. Time has been needed for close international contacts with both NATO and its member countries, as well as with Sweden. We have wanted to give the debate the space it needs.

Now that the time for decision-making is approaching, we also state our own common positions for the information of parliamentary groups and parties. NATO membership would strengthen Finland's security. As a member of NATO, Finland would strengthen the entire defense alliance. Finland must apply for NATO membership as a matter of urgency. We hope that the national steps still needed to reach this solution will be taken swiftly in the coming days.

Sauli Niinistö The president of the Republic

Sanna Marin Prime minister "

Posted by: eyeswideopen | May 12 2022 13:12 utc | 269

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 12 2022 5:19 utc | 228

Overdetermination may also be utilized in determining the causal factors of any event. These causes may derive from multiple constructs social, economic, mechanical, etc.

With respect to the SMO it is can be asserted that the causal factors include:
RF motive to protect "moskals" from military attack
UA motive to regain rebel held territories
US motive to displace EU energy dependence on RF with dependence on US LNG
US motive to bleed RF white and undermine RF economy
US motive to create social upheaval leading to RF regime change
US motive to impair BRI connections to EU with RF as a key link
German motive to transition to "green" renewable energy
US motive to reduce RF strategic depth
RF motive to increase RF strategic depth
Biden needing a foreign policy "win" after the Afghanistan imbroglio

These are of course all "ïsms" in that they speak directly to realism in a way that structural concepts such a fascism, Marxism, imperialism, and neo-liberalism do not.

I have no idea of the intended meaning of the prior comment.

Cheers!

Posted by: Sushi | May 12 2022 13:13 utc | 270

Wolf [261]

Currently Poland gets redirected gas from Germany

I think that situation ceased .........12.05.2022 when Russia sanctioned the Polish operator of Yamal pipeline

Yamal

"Für Gazprom bedeutet dies ein Verbot der Nutzung einer Gaspipeline im Besitz von EuRoPol GAZ für den Transport von russischem Gas durch Polen"

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | May 12 2022 13:46 utc | 271

@psychohistorian 228 — Overdetermination applies equally well to socio-political-economic phenomena as it does in describing causes of psychological syndromes or conditions. Evidence for this is all around us, as we see in the literally hundreds of different analyses put up by barflies on a daily basis, all of which or most of which relying on conceptual apparatus that is found in the various —isms you so vociferously denounce. Thanks for your reply —Billy

Posted by: Billy the Texas Red | May 12 2022 13:49 utc | 272

@262 skiffer - Thanks for that information. I stand corrected. I didn't know.

Posted by: lex talionis | May 12 2022 13:56 utc | 273

"It is now set on a far grander ambition: to weaken Russia itself. Presented as a common-sense response to Russian aggression, the shift, in fact, amounts to a significant escalation."

Actually after years of ever increasing "sanctions" there has not been any real shift in policy. The only difference is that they now state this policy quite openly and even leave out the various pretexts being used over the previous years.

Posted by: JR | May 12 2022 14:08 utc | 274

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 6:09 utc | 235

"Further, no one knows whether or not Russia - or a replaced Ukrainian state - can gain and maintain control of Western Ukraine. Read my lips (famous Bush phrase): No one."

Not sure why this issue is of such importance but what you say is true. Furthermore, we are not there yet. Donbass is the Main Course still on the plate at this point.

However we DO KNOW many things RF have said about their intentions, one of which is that after the SMO has dealt with immediate kinetic operations the people in any given area will decide their fate.

It is thus reasonable to assume that the same with be true in Galicia zone if the SMO gets that far or if it is left as a rump area after other zones have declared their intentions. In which case Galicians will decide their fate. And that being the case from what (admittedly) little I understand of that area, it is highly unlikely they will want to be under Russian authority in any way shape or form.

And from Russia's pov, a buffer zone between NATO territory (like Poland) and RF territory or protectorate (like Novorusiya) is desirable.

Russia has motivation to keep missile sites as far away from Moscow as possible and I believe right now Poland is a critical part of that concern even though there are other potential closer and hotter spots like Finland, Baltics etc. not to mention submarines and space stations. But they have good reason for pushing as far West as possible albeit ONLY insofar the population welcomes them or desires neutral relations based on UN law and so forth.

I think it's fair to say that leaving it up to the people is something we now DO KNOW and so it's highly unlikely that Russia is going to want to wade into the most anti-Russian zone in the entire theatre only to be voted out by 90% of the people there.

Posted by: Scorpion | May 12 2022 14:29 utc | 275

@wolf 261
" the Polish economy, heavily dependent on Russian gas,"

Last week I read their Russian gas use is only 7% of their energy needs.

Posted by: Scorpion | May 12 2022 14:40 utc | 276

" the Polish economy, heavily dependent on Russian gas,"

Last week I read their Russian gas use is only 7% of their energy needs.

Posted by: Scorpion | May 12 2022 14:40 utc | 277

You are right !!!!

"Share of total primary energy consumption"

https://www.fitchratings.com/research/sovereigns/poland-is-less-exposed-to-russian-gas-supplies-than-bulgaria-29-04-2022

Posted by: Tom_12 | May 12 2022 14:51 utc | 277

I grew up in one of the most violent societies ever-apartheid South Africa in 1950s and 1960s. The most extreme violence of course was that perpetrated by the white government and its agents against the majority non-white population. But even privileged white South Africans, like me, experienced violence early on in life and later on as army conscripts.

What that taught me, having had many fist-fights and being picked on a lot, was that there are ways of dealing with bullies. Bullies are not necessarily the biggest boys. Often the bullying was perpetrated by a small, puny little fuck who, accompanied by his physically big pal, seldom got involved in the actual fight but provoked the battle. So, I learned that, in those circumstances, the best tactic is to punch the little guy, hard, really hard, so that it shuts him up. His big pal then has a decision, does he get involved or not. Generally, in my experience, if the you hit the first guy so hard he was shocked, the big guy thinks twice and doesn’t get involved.

In the event a group of bullies picks a fight, my experience is to hit the nearest one, hard, first as he will become involved at some point so hurt him early on. The relevance of all this? It’s bullies like the oaf Johnson in the UK who talks the talk, provoking the fight, but who’s fat arse is never itself on the line to being kicked. So my experience is that until Johnson and the UK get a hard fist on the nose, they will talk big and expect the US, the Poles or the Ukrainians to do the actual fighting. The same goes of course for the US, German, Latvian, Lithuanian governments etc. Note that I do not mean the peoples of these countries bit their gutless, pusillanimous leaders.

In my second scenario, Poland is the nearest of the talking belligerents and will get involved in the fight, at some point, unless you shock the bastard by hitting it hard and early. The foolish Finnish and Swedish governments who are clamouring to join Nato, to join in the fight on the strength of the UK’s assurances that, in that event, the UK will be “right behind them” will learn the hard way. When, having been provoked, Russia smacks them hard, and the blood flows freely from their once ‘neutral’ noses, they’ll discover, like Ukraine, that the UK is behind them, way, way behind them out of harms way. They can take comfort from Liz Truss offering to hold their jackets for the re-match!

Until belligerents are themselves at risk of being killed or beaten up, they will continue shouting the odds and watch their “friends” getting their arses kicked for the belligerents’ interests.

Posted by: Vragtes | May 12 2022 14:55 utc | 278

What happened here?

On May 4, Lufthansa denies more than 100 Jewish passengers, flying from New York to Budapest for a religious pilgrimage, the right to board in Frankfurt (stopover on the flight, I presume).

https://sputniknews.com/20220512/german-airline-apologises-after-more-than-100-jewish-passengers-denied-boarding-at-frankfurt-1095458638.html

This sounds like a 3-letter agency situation, although I may be under the influence of the topic of this thread.

https://nypost.com/2022/05/09/airline-kicks-over-100-nyc-orthodox-jews-off-flight-over-masks/

Posted by: Bruised Northerner | May 12 2022 15:09 utc | 279

Posted by: Skiffer | May 12 2022 11:42 utc | 262

reality is a dog being ridden by fleas, stumbling left or right in response to where the bites itch the most

Koan of the day!

Posted by: Sushi | May 12 2022 15:16 utc | 280

Posted by: karlof1 | May 11 2022 21:01 utc | 130

I'll still go with my hunch: I took a bunch of flak for once offering that the Saudis would warm up to Russia and that this would be a big threat to the US/USD; recent events are proving my hunch to be fairly prescient.

Douglas MacGregor, IMO, has a pretty viable angle on my thoughts of Poland taking Ukrainian lands:

https://www.theamericanconservative.com/articles/the-threat-of-polish-involvement-in-ukraine/

Confronted with the unambiguous failure of U.S. assistance and the influx of new weapons to rescue Ukrainian forces from certain destruction, the Biden administration is desperate to reverse the situation and save face. Poland seems to offer a way out. More important, Polish President Andrzej Duda and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky have both expressed the desire to erase the borders between Poland and Ukraine.

Unconfirmed reports from Warsaw indicate that after Washington rejected the proposals for a no-fly zone over Ukraine, along with the transfer of Polish MIG-29 aircrafts to Ukrainian pilots, the Polish general staff was quietly instructed to formulate plans for intervention in the Ukrainian conflict by seizing the western part of Ukraine. Naturally, military action of this scale would require Kiev’s approval, but given Washington’s de facto control of the Zelensky government, approval for Polish military intervention should not be a problem.

Presumably, the Biden administration may hope that a collision involving Russians and Poles in any form—including air and missile strikes against Polish forces on the Ukrainian side of the border—would potentially call for the NATO council to meet and address Article V of the NATO treaty. Whether a Polish military intervention into Ukraine justifies the commitment of NATO members to war with Russia is unclear. Action still would be left up to the judgement of each NATO member state.

About the most that any analyst can say with confidence at this point is that Polish military intervention would confront NATO members with the specter of war with Russia, the very development most NATO members oppose. Setting aside whether Polish ground forces are ready to execute the mission in the face of Russian opposition, Polish action would satisfy the neocons in Washington, D.C. Poland may well be the key to widening NATO’s war with Russia in Eastern Europe.

Why? Because the Polish catalyst for conflict with Russia presents the American people with a war that Americans do not want, but cannot easily stop. Such a war with Russia would be a war that began without an objective appraisal of American vital interests, the distribution of power inside the international system, or the existence of any concrete threats to U.S. national security.

My "hunch" is that Poland will seek to acquire parts of western Ukraine, but it will do so as part of some sort of negotiated settlement rather than by direct force (with or without NATO). I cannot see Poland tossing themselves into the teeth of the Russian military; if proper refection of the current state of Russia's dominance is taken into consideration then it should be clear that NATO really would not be able to backstop Poland. The risk to Poland is far too high. They have a better chance of attaining a net positive out of this. I wouldn't be surprised if Russia isn't back-channeling to the Poles that they'll be better off not jumping into the fire.

I get it that people believe that the Poles are hell-bent on lashing out at the Russians. There's lots of propaganda cooked up to incite populations, but underneath/behind lies the string-pullers, and the string-pullers are the ones who will assess the risks and rewards. I'm not seeing that Poland's string-pullers could feel comfortable in having WWIII on their doorstep. NOTE: "string-pullers" in this case would be the internal powers (oligarchs and such) and not the king-makers (outside Poland, US and UK etc.).

Keep in mind that China, and perhaps Iran, will be ready to come into the foray if NATO attacks Russia. This, of course, speaking in terms of conventional warfare (nuclear war makes all moot).

Posted by: Seer | May 12 2022 15:16 utc | 281

@ Sushi | May 12 2022 15:16 utc | 281

Great fleas have little fleas upon their backs to bite 'em,
And little fleas have lesser fleas, and so ad infinitum.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 12 2022 15:28 utc | 282

The Poles are and have always been unhinged:

https://www.rt.com/news/555351-morawiecki-russian-nationalism-cancer/

Posted by: Kouros | May 12 2022 15:31 utc | 283

Posted by: Bruised Northerner | May 12 2022 15:09 utc | 280

https://twitter.com/Bird_of_Berlin/status/1523917737894068224

All the police with machine guns makes the situation doubly idiotic. But I guess they must be ready for ISIS appearing at any time. Or are they worried about AZOV Boys appearing ?

And the Mask BS rolls on and on.

Posted by: Tom_12 | May 12 2022 15:37 utc | 284

Paleoconservative Pat Buchanan, on inexplicable bragging by "US intelligence":

Moreover, U.S. boasting like this plays right into Putin’s narrative that Russia is facing and fighting in Ukraine a U.S.-led alliance that is out to crush Russia.

Once again we face the challenge of pretending not to notice cognitive dissonance at 100 decibels. Staying a perfectly probitive prole gets more challenging all the time, what?

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 12 2022 16:08 utc | 285

lex talionis | May 12 2022 6:01 utc | 232 / Skiffer | May 12 2022 11:42 utc | 262

hi lex! i see you replied to skiffer afterwards who has it correct.. i think the guy left ukraine in 2012 and has been out of the country since... cheers..

Patroklos | May 12 2022 6:06 utc | 234

another excellent overview from you... thanks patroklos! i love how you incorporate ancient greece in your commentary too! cheers.

Vragtes | May 12 2022 14:55 utc | 279

thanks vragtes.... i appreciate your perspective... i am presently reading nelson mandelas autobiography - ''a long walk to freedom''.. i am about 450 pages in so far.. i love this guy! kudos to you for standing up to all of that craziness... i like your analogy of what to do here...

Posted by: james | May 12 2022 16:09 utc | 286

Skiffer | May 12 2022 11:42 utc 262, Sushi 15:16 utc | 281, Aleph_Null15:28 utc 283

Gavroche:
"...A sparrow in a hut
Can make a happy home
A flea can bite the bottom
Of the Pope in Rome!."

think I'll flee now...

Posted by: waynorinorway | May 12 2022 16:13 utc | 287

Seer @282--

Thanks for your reply. Unfortunately, Poland has a history of making very poor choices, which is why many expect Pland to choose poorly again. IMO, an excellent indicator is Poland's response to the attack on the Russian Ambassador--it abets it 100%. The problem for Russia isn't the military power of Poland or the Baltics; rather, it's their NATO status that makes them entry portals for invasion by the Outlaw US Empire or stationing of its offensive missiles, which is precisely what Russia has stated. Romania's been mostly absent from the discourse but shares the same dynamic with Poland/Baltics. Furthermore, is Poland genuinely capable of making its own choices or are Poland's choices made for it by the Outlaw US Empire? If the latter's the case, then Poland will invade Ukraine.

Posted by: karlof1 | May 12 2022 16:15 utc | 288

@james 286-thank you. Nelson Mandela was truly an exception man and one who never lost touch with ordinary people. This was essentially a part of his humanity. After all the horrendous atrocities perpetrated on the population by governments of Malan, Verwoerd, Vorster, Botha, de Klerk etc Mandela still advocated forgiveness.

I hope you enjoy his biography. There is a large library of others one should read if one wants the real history of South Africa rather than the revisionist, sanitised versions generally available. Let me know and I’ll post a few titles and authors.

It wasn’t easy to overcome the brainwashing and racist beliefs instilled in one in SA but there were many far braver and cleverer people than me who resisted and didn’t serve apartheid but I got there in the end. The violence I experienced did at least allow me to reach an understanding on how it works and what can be done.

Posted by: Vragtes | May 12 2022 16:23 utc | 289

French volunteer gives at readio his story in Ukraine.
"J’ai vu des crimes abominables commis par Azov." De retour d'Ukraine, Adrien Bocquet raconte
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZoKnhXnp-Zk&t=1484s

Posted by: mry | May 12 2022 16:31 utc | 290

@ Vragtes | May 12 2022 16:23 utc | 289

thank you! i don't watch movies much.. apparently they turned this book into a movie, but i am not going to watch it.. i am more into books... however, this one is a long one - 750 pages or so! after this, i have many other books i want to read... i am a person of many interests, but i have had this book sitting around the house for a good 3 years and finally got round to reading it.. although i am sure i am just scratching the surface of all that has happened in south africa with this book, it is indeed an eye opener... on a personal note, there are a number of doctors that migrated here to vancouver island from south africa... three of them are piano players who i have played music with too! apparently the climate here on vi is similar to south africa... i have never really talked with them much about south africa, but peter gooch still has his mom and sister living in sa... i guess the thinking must have been to want to get out of south africa if one could.. i suppose being a doctor was one way to do it.. do you still live in south africa?

Posted by: james | May 12 2022 16:37 utc | 291

Kickbacks to the Western/Globalist security apparatuses for their fine work and commitment to the "cause". ;-)

Posted by: Leo | May 12 2022 16:39 utc | 292

I think Anatoly Shariy, the Ukrainian blogger in Spain, left Ukraine in 2014 right after Maidan. I am pretty sure if he remained he would be treated a bit differently than G Lira by the SBU. I have heard that Spanish authorities have realesed him. He went there for political asylum I think. I might not have it all correct.

Posted by: lex talionis | May 12 2022 6:01 utc | 232


"Released" my ass. He's been "released" on bail; his passport was confiscated by Spanish authorities; and he has to report to them every fortnight. He can be extradited at any time.

Posted by: malenkov | May 12 2022 16:47 utc | 293

@ malenkov | May 12 2022 16:47 utc | 293... yes - spain is acting like a good stooge for empire, in a similar way the countries involved with julian assange have..

Posted by: james | May 12 2022 16:53 utc | 294

@james at 291@-Vancouver Island is a place I very much want to visit but I accept that, at my age and with the world as it is, it is now unlikely that I will do so. A philosopher friend of mine spent a happy couple of years on VI indeed meeting his wife there. He talks wonderfully of its beauty.

I left SA after my 2 years of national service (600,000 white S Africans had to do this) in the 970s and have never returned. I live in the UK. A lot of thinking conscripts wished to get out of SA and some did. If you had a place to study something like medicine abroad, it was possible to get deferment of from the army. I’d stick with reading if I were you rather then films though they’re not mutually exclusive! :-) I like both but prefer books and really love music but I play nothing but the fool.

Posted by: Vragtes | May 12 2022 16:54 utc | 295

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | May 12 2022 4:38 utc | 222

It's hit Lviv with missiles in order to knock out military capabilities that would be used in the East.

Russia won't be stationing missiles in far-west Ukraine. Not anytime soon.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | May 12 2022 17:24 utc | 296

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 12 2022 15:28 utc | 283

Turtles all the way down?

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | May 12 2022 17:25 utc | 297

Go Vlad, blast the hell out of the United SNAKES Corp, D[e]C[eit [P]EU socialists puppets!

Posted by: JaiSeli | May 12 2022 17:29 utc | 298

Interesting comment on casualties by Dr. Antonovskyy. Cannot say for sure, as reporter didn't research this angle, but there appears to be something new going on with the wounded/killed casualty ratio in this war. Generally the ratio of wounded to killed is figured on 3:1, although the US was better, particularly in Vietnam and our latest wars, by having excellent first aid in the field and rapid evacuation to surgical treatment. In all big wars, artillery does most the killing and wounding, and it yields this 3:1 ratio. Now if this war has a different ratio, then artillery has become more efficient and effective. This is something that some bright ambitious staff officer needs to look at. The other possibility, and I've seen some signs of it from the pictures I've seen of the Ukranian soldiers, is that the Ukrainian army isn't equipping its soldiers with helmets and making them wear them all the time. Ukrainian soldiers are being killed by shell fragments to the brain that a helmet would likely have stopped. This would go far in explaining Dr. Antonovskyy's observation. This is an inexcuseable military stupidity and unprofessionalism/incompetence. This is something that a reporter should be sharp enough to notice and catch, but most nowadays just aren't. Another good staff-officer assignment here.

Posted by: Daniel N. White | May 12 2022 17:37 utc | 299

@ Tom_Q_Collins | May 12 2022 17:25 utc | 297

That "turtles" anecdote is alleged to have been proposed as a geophysical theory (by a cranky old lady) to my idol Bertrand. Lord, this worn-out world could sure use someone like Bertrand Russel right now! Someone with the buttons to get busted for peace, when everyone else thinks peace is crazy.

That's aside, though, because the point of Bertie's anecdote was to make fun of the old lady's physical system, depending as it does on circular logic ("begging the question" in the truly philosophical sense). The irony behind this anecdote is that BR's life-work (aside from Peace on Earth) was a consistent (idiomatic, noncircular) basis of mathematics, which got accidentally demolished by my other idol, Gottlob Frege.

Russel & Whitehead's system grappled with set theory, where it's okay for sets to include other sets as members. It's also okay for a set to include itself as a member. Frege wrote Russel a polite note, to ask about a difficulty he'd encountered with such a set -- the set of all sets which do not include themselves as a member. Russel took one look at this note and started to weep, because this little stick of dynamite blew apart the foundations of mathematics, and he couldn't figure out a way to fix it.

A little bit later, Godel delivered the coup de grace via incompleteness. Revolutionary times, for mathematics.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 12 2022 17:50 utc | 300

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