Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
August 10, 2022

How Ukraine Lost Its Riches

On February 24, the day Russian troops crossed the borders to Ukraine, I wrote about the potential end state of the operation:

Looking at this map I believe that the most advantageous end state for Russia would be the creation of a new independent country, call it Novorussiya, on the land east of the Dnieper and south along the coast that holds a majority ethnic Russian population and that, in 1922, had been attached to the Ukraine by Lenin. That state would be politically, culturally and militarily aligned with Russia.


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This would eliminate Ukrainian access to the Black Sea and create a land bridge towards the Moldavian breakaway Transnistria which is under Russian protection.

The rest of the Ukraine would be a land confined, mostly agricultural state, disarmed and too poor to be build up to a new threat to Russia anytime soon. Politically it would be dominated by fascists from Galicia which would then become a major problem for the European Union.

On March 19 I revisited the question and added Kryvyi Rih (Kriwoi Rog in Russian), the yellow part of the map, to the list:

Novorossiya roughly includes the red and yellow areas in the above map. It also includes the valuable Soviet developed iron ore mines and factories of Kryvyi Rih west of the Dnieper river.

I especially want to point out that I spoke of a "mostly agricultural state, disarmed and too poor to be build up to a new threat to Russia anytime soon."

I could say that because nearly all of Ukraine's resources and industries are in the south and east. If Russia takes those or creates the new state of Novorossiya the 'rest of Ukraine' will be mostly de-industrialized. Also of note is that the south and east include most of the famous black soil areas, which consists of a half meter deep humus layer that allows for good agricultural results without using much fertilizers.

Much of the steel and heavy machine industries in the south and east have been neglected over the last 30 years under Ukrainian rule or were destroyed during the wars that are raging since 2014. It will require very large investments to revive them but the potential profits will be great.

Nearly half a year after I wrote about it, the Washington Post, with the help of some Canadians, is catching up on the issue:

In the Ukraine war, a battle for the nation’s mineral and energy wealth

After nearly six months of fighting, Moscow’s sloppy war has yielded at least one big reward: expanded control over some of the most mineral-rich lands in Europe. Ukraine harbors some of the world’s largest reserves of titanium and iron ore, fields of untapped lithium, as well as massive deposits of coal. Collectively, they are worth tens of trillions of dollars.

The lion’s share of those coal deposits, which for decades have powered Ukraine’s critical steel industry, are concentrated in the east, where Moscow has made the most inroads. That’s put them in Russian hands, along with significant amounts of other valuable energy and mineral deposits used for everything from aircraft parts to smartphones, according to an analysis for The Washington Post by the Canadian geopolitical risk firm SecDev.
...
“The worst scenario is that Ukraine loses land, no longer has a strong commodity economy and becomes more like one of the Baltic states, a nation unable to sustain its industrial economy,” said Stanislav Zinchenko chief executive of GMK, a Kyiv-based economic think tank. “This is what Russia wants. To weaken us.”
...
Yet SecDev’s analysis indicates that at least $12.4 trillion worth of Ukraine’s energy deposits, metals and minerals are now under Russian control. That figure accounts for nearly half the dollar value of the 2,209 deposits reviewed by the company. In addition to 63 percent of the country’s coal deposits, Moscow has seized 11 percent of its oil deposits, 20 percent of its natural gas deposits, 42 percent of its metals and 33 percent of its deposits of rare earth and other critical minerals including lithium.

I believe that the natural gas share Russia already holds is higher as there are several sub-sea gas fields around Crimea and off the eastern coast.

If the Russian forces also take Kryvyi Rih and Dnipro they will have about 75-80% of Ukraine's pre-war GDP under their control.

Russia's war effort is currently financed by the 'west' which pays for it through record energy prices created by its own sanctions on Russia.

As the Russian Interfax agency reported yesterday (machine translation):

The positive balance of the current account of the balance of payments of the Russian Federation in January-July 2022 amounted to $166.6 billion, which is 3.3 times more than in the same period in 2021 ($50.1 billion). Such information is contained in the assessment of the balance of payments of the Russian Federation, published on the website of the Bank of Russia.
...
According to the base scenario of the Central Bank’s forecast for 2022, updated in July, with an average annual oil price of $80 per barrel, the current account surplus is expected to be $243 billion, the positive balance of foreign trade in goods and services - $277 billion, and the negative balance of primary and secondary income - $33 billion.

If the 'west' really wants to deprive Russia of money it must immediately lift the sanctions and restart importing oil, gas and coal from Russia at then much lower prices.

Russia will not lack money to finance the rebuilding of Novorossiya's great industries. Once that is done those areas are evidently able to support themselves and to guarantee a high standard of living. They will also have enough money to militarily defend themselves against anything the poor rest of Ukraine will be able to finance.

At the end of March, after negotiations between Russia and Ukraine in Turkey, there was nearly an agreement on a ceasefire and on the end of the war. Joe Biden then tasked Boris Johnson with telling Zelensky to continue the war. The 'west' would otherwise stop paying him. Zelensky did as he was told and stopped all negotiations with Russia.

An agreement with Russia at that time would have kept the Ukraine mostly as one state with only minor losses in the Donbas. But the decision to continue the hopeless war also ended all chances for Ukraine to keep its riches.

It will be poor and helpless while its 'western' neighbors will feast on it.

Posted by b on August 10, 2022 at 14:15 UTC | Permalink

Comments
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And have no doubt, the US is mad because the Maidan regime was privatizing and stripping all those assets for US investors...with kickbacks for Biden's family, which was desperate to get rich like the Clintons and Obamas.

Posted by: Sam B | Aug 10 2022 14:22 utc | 1

Nato/EU/USA axis shot it self on the foot by sanctioning Russia,now the citizens of USA and EU suffer the most

Posted by: Sam Vandenberg | Aug 10 2022 14:35 utc | 2

Russia's war effort is currently financed by the 'west' which pays for it through record energy prices created by its own sanctions on Russia

I don't see that's "paying for it" - the money is going to the oil companies which have record profits.

It's an interesting question I've not seen asked in the UK.

"What is the sterling value of armaments sent to Ukraine, plus the costs of surveillance flights, plus the costs of training 20,000 Ukrainian troops for 3 months each? And how are we paying for it"

I'm not sure Joe Biden is in control of US policy, his handlers might be.

Posted by: YetAnotherAnon | Aug 10 2022 14:38 utc | 3

Much of the steel and heavy machine industries in the south and east have been neglected over the last 30 years under Ukrainian rule or were destroyed during the wars that are raging since 2014. It will require very large investments to revive them but the potential profits will be great.

This is where China and BRI come in!

Russia would be stupid if she doesn't take over the pink and yellow sections as "prize" or compensation for the $300 Billion stolen by the Americans/Europeans and the Russians killed in this SMO.

Ukraine will be neutered and sent back to its agricultural past.

Posted by: Sam Smith | Aug 10 2022 14:43 utc | 4

YetAnotherAnon no 3

"And how are we paying for it"

Through the nose!!!!!

Posted by: ThusspakeZarathustra | Aug 10 2022 14:45 utc | 5

One of the ironies likely to emerge is that the Bandera brothers are very likely to end up in Poland, either by direct annexation or by the informal colonisation of a landlocked rural area by a larger more urbanised and stronger neigbouring state.
It will be back to Square One for the people of Galicia and their vast, noisy north American fan club.

Posted by: bevin | Aug 10 2022 14:46 utc | 6

Looks like the EU are increasing sanctions against Russia and not lowering them.


"EU members are discussing the parameters of a new package of anti-Russian sanctions, including a possible ban on issuing Schengen visas, German government spokesman Steffen Hebestreit confirmed at a briefing.
He noted that the countries European Union now they are fundamentally discussing what "the seventh package of sanctions should look like", but there is no single position yet."


https://ria.ru/20220810/sanktsii-1808583516.html

Posted by: Republicofscotland | Aug 10 2022 14:46 utc | 7

Quibble - the militias of the DPR and LPR have borne the brunt of the fighting. It’s they who are liberating the territories from this corrupt Kiev regime.

Question for Barflies : how many of the ~21 million Ukrainans who voted with their feet,and fled overseas, after 2014 will ever return ? Follow up question : around 2/3s of working age Ukranians live overseas, how many of them will ever return ?

Barfly answers to these 2 questions will Illuminate the economic prospects of any Rump Ukraine.

Posted by: Exile | Aug 10 2022 14:47 utc | 8

@exile

There are currently 6 million Ukrainians living and working in Russia. Offering good pay will pull them back into east/south Ukraine.

Posted by: b | Aug 10 2022 14:54 utc | 9

"If the 'west' really wants to deprive Russia of money it must immediately lift the sanctions and restart importing oil, gas and coal from Russia at then much lower prices."

err b

Who is to say that the Russians will drop their prices for the current Sanctioners if they asked for a resumption of supplies of oil, gas and coal?

Why would they do that?

Posted by: Butties | Aug 10 2022 14:54 utc | 10

@YetAnotherAnon

have you heard of taxes?

in addition to normal taxes gazprom might have to pay a special additional tax. https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/commodities/russia-natural-gas-gazprom-new-windfall-tax-sanctions-war-inflation-2022-7

therefore the SVO seems to be entirely paid for by EU

Posted by: ct | Aug 10 2022 14:57 utc | 11

@Butties

Supply and demand forces will automatically reduce global prices if the sanctions are removed.

right now the Russian supply is effectively in a separate market for only the countries willing to buy it. The rest of the countries have the same level of demand but a smaller total amount of oil available

Posted by: ct | Aug 10 2022 15:00 utc | 12

As a Casual 3rd Party Observer, I do find it shamefully wasteful to see a Nation-State so endowed with Natural Mineral Resources, Fresh Water Access, Agricultural Productivity Baseline Industrial Infrastructure - so bogged down in Dire SocioPolitical Corruption that they're unable to be Self-sufficient and Prosperous.

I hope that Russian-Speaking Residents of the Donbass and Other Regions would be able to Secede from Kiev and Work towards securing their Future Together.

Posted by: IronForge | Aug 10 2022 15:00 utc | 13

I don't expect Russia to just leave Western Ukraine to NATO because there will never be peace and also because NATO will put nuclear missiles on the border that can reach Moscow in no time. At the very least there will have to be a regime change or a reelection. Russia should offer Zelensky double of whatever the U.S. is paying him if he retires to his mansion in Miami already. That might avoid a lot of unnecessary death and suffering.

Posted by: aquileia | Aug 10 2022 15:02 utc | 14

Russian Bear = Daniel 7:5 Bear

3 Ribs in the Mouth of the Russian Bear = 100% of Crimea (Feb. 2022) + 100% of Luhansk (July 2022) + 100% of Donetsk (?)

What Happens Next?: The Russian Bear arises and devours much flesh, NATO is nuked. This includes the USA.

What to do? Get out of the USA before the bear has all 3 ribs in its mouth. You really don't want to be where many nukes destroy the land within one hour. There is no future to stay in Babylon USA (Jeremiah 50). There is no life to stay there. Flee out of Babylon USA while you still can. There is not much time left!

Posted by: Cl. Young | Aug 10 2022 15:02 utc | 15

@ Posted by: b | Aug 10 2022 14:54 utc | 9

I find it unlikely that high wages will be offered to encourage re-settlement. Internal refugees will be re-settled wherever there's still industry and they will have the "choice" of working for poverty wages or attempting to make their way into Western Europe where western capitalists will take advantage of them. What's assured is that EU and Russian imperialisms will take advantage of what remains of Ukraine and its workforce in order to extract superprofits and valorize their own national accumulations of capital.

Posted by: fnord | Aug 10 2022 15:08 utc | 16

Posted by: aquileia | Aug 10 2022 15:02 utc | 14

Posted by: pretzelattack | Aug 10 2022 15:09 utc | 17

“Russia's war effort is currently financed by the 'west' which pays for it through record energy prices created by its own sanctions on Russia.”

This is not correct. The west is not and cannot be the source of the Russian rouble. Russia’s war effort is financed by the Russian government drawing drafts on the Russian central bank, which is the only source of roubles.

Posted by: Widespreadhaze | Aug 10 2022 15:24 utc | 18

If you want the full flavor of the crazed propaganda coming from the "West," check out a site called Quora. Their site with its posts started showing up in my inbox one day, unbidden.

Posted by: Hepcat | Aug 10 2022 15:30 utc | 19

Kiev will not be left to the Ukraine at the end of the day. Sumi, Chernigov, Zhytomyr, Vinnitsa will be taken too. Those, who don't want to live in the Russian controlled areas can move to what's left of the Ukraine. Zelly will either run for Aliyah, or will be caught. Things are going to change faster come October/November. There's a chance that Russia will drop all connections with the West at the end of this year, or in the first quarter of 2023.

Posted by: rp | Aug 10 2022 15:35 utc | 20

Russia has enough land and resources. It doesn't need to plunder Ukraine.

Furthermore, a liberated Ukraine - one free from the current Russophobia and prevailing Nazism - must be able to stand on its own two feet.

A land-locked failed state certainly isn't good for Europe but it isn't good for Russia either. I've noticed some prominent pro-Russia Twitter commentators make declarations such as anything short of capturing Odessa would be considered a defeat. Why? For what purpose?

This has never been an exercise in taking as much Ukrainian land as possible. To reduce the current conflict into such basic terms legitimizes accusations that Russia is merely an aggressor.

But, then again, will Ukraine ever be free of the demented hatred for Russia that has consumed so much of it. If not, then what?


Posted by: Pat Bateman | Aug 10 2022 15:35 utc | 21

it seems like at least 1 su24 was destroyed in the Crimea blast yesterday. this is a bad look for Russian propaganda to claim nothing happened. why is the Kremlin so afraid of backing it's threats of targeting decision making centers of Ukraine when they continuously cross their stated red lines? zircon Zelinsky, nobody will miss his coke fueled rants. and with him gone, the rest of the oligarchs understand nobody is off limits!

just saying 😌

Posted by: BurnEye Minds3rdEye | Aug 10 2022 15:45 utc | 22

@ ct #12

Your hypothesis does not stack up.

Russia is NOT suffering from the loss of the Sanctioners Market.

In fact according to the article it is benefiting from the sanctions.

This would only change for oil, at least, if OPEC+ decided to flood the market.

New Multi Polar World news indicates that this will not take place.

Unless 'regime change', 'dirty tricks, etc.

Put on your braces to supplement your belt. The ride has not yet reached the Peak of the roller coaster.

Posted by: Butties | Aug 10 2022 15:45 utc | 23

Exile@8.... reciprocating agreements with vassal states having them refuse refuge to fleeing Ukrainians of Draft age. Canada once gave quarter Vietnam draft dodgers. Harper's government stopped that and began deporting US citizens hiding in Beaverstan. In a generation or two, once Russia has won the peace, who knows how many grand children may chose to return to their ancestral lands....hopefully not the likes of Kagens or Freelands or it'll be SMO 2.0.

Cheers M

Posted by: sean the leprechaun | Aug 10 2022 15:50 utc | 24

A related question is:
How much of the 28% of Ukrainian farmland that was “sold” to Western agri-giants (Monsanto, Cargill, et al) is in what will be Novorussiya? The answer will impact the Western response to current and future Allied territorial gains.

Do any barflies know?

Posted by: Ciaran | Aug 10 2022 15:51 utc | 25

@ aquileia | Aug 10 2022 15:02 utc | 14

Good points for the security angle. But taking the entire area of the Ukraine will immediately acquire a large and predictably hostile ethnic minority. It's almost certain to lay the groundwork for a tragic episode, much like the Chechens.

One hopes for pacification in reality, not just as a label for slaughter.

Posted by: jhill | Aug 10 2022 15:52 utc | 26

~21 million Ukrainans who voted with their feet,and fled overseas, after 2014 will ever return ? Follow up question : around 2/3s of working age Ukranians live overseas, how many of them will ever return ?

Posted by: Exile | Aug 10 2022 14:47 utc | 8

Where did you get this "21 million" figure?
According to Wikipedia (I know, not a very reliable source), Ukraine had a population of 45,553,047 in 2013 and 41,167,336 in 2021. Even if you subtract births, the Wikipedia data doesn't give you the 21 million.

Posted by: SwissGuy | Aug 10 2022 15:54 utc | 27

Pat Bateman @ 21

Furthermore, a liberated Ukraine - one free from the current Russophobia and prevailing Nazism

The Anglo American NATO death cult will never let that happen. Their goals are driven by a desire to control resources and back the back of Russian leadership. They will never stop ever.

If they were serious about hurting Russia they would end all sanctions on all countries like Venezuela and Iran. Oil would drop to under 40 dollars a barrel in a few weeks and natural gas prices would drop as well.

But, then again, will Ukraine ever be free of the demented hatred for Russia that has consumed so much of it. If not, then what?

Include the Anglo American death cult as well in that as well as the Russiaphobia is epic. The "then what" is proxy war until one side collapses. It could eventually turn into direct conflict. It will never end short of what was done to destroy Japan and Germany at the end of WWII, a total breaking the back of one side or the other.

Posted by: circumspect | Aug 10 2022 15:54 utc | 28

Butties @10: "Who is to say that the Russians will drop their prices for the current Sanctioners if they asked for a resumption of supplies of oil, gas and coal?"

Market forces.

People who cheerlead for capitalism really need to figure out how it works. You don't necessarily need Marx-level understanding of capitalism, but a basic feel for how supply and demand work on local and global scales would be really helpful.

Posted by: William Gruff | Aug 10 2022 15:54 utc | 29

so what happens to all the land purchased by Dupont Monsanto and Gates if Russia conquers 'their' property?

Posted by: ld | Aug 10 2022 15:57 utc | 30

@ciaran any proof for "28% of Ukrainian farmland that was “sold” to Western agri-giants "?

Some nutty Australian website recently claimed that but it gave zero sources for it.

Posted by: b | Aug 10 2022 15:58 utc | 31

@aquileia 14
Look at what happened to the Shah of Iran after he was removed from power. He was a billionaire with no power and no country and every place he tried to live knew that... it isn't pretty. Honestly Zelensky's only hope is to win the war. Believe it or not.

Posted by: Goldhoarder | Aug 10 2022 16:00 utc | 32

The historical map concerning the extent of Ukraine is wrong in one respect. The Budjak, the area in southern Moldova that is now part of Odessa oblast was part of Romania in 1922. Budjak was at that time, together with the present republic of Moldova, part of unified Romania.

Russia has acquired the eastern half of the principality of Moldova in 1812, despite the Ottomans not having the legal rights to do so with a semi-independent Principality. WWI and the Revolution created the conditions for the return of Romanian occupied lands to be ruled by Romanians once again.

As much as I despise western hypocrisy, I do not appreciate when there are big toadsies told by Russia in pursuit of its interests.

Posted by: Kouros | Aug 10 2022 16:04 utc | 33

Sanctions Delirium Tremens. I wonder who are the well paid eurocrats in charge of designing sanction packages, Hungary and Slovakia to pay for transit fees for their oil from Russia, Transneft the Russian pipeline company is unable to make the payments due to.... sanctions¡¡¡ And since we know that sanctions are sanctus sanctus sanctus, the law of God cannot be broken. Oh Lord forgive them, they do not know what they're doing.

Druzhba means friendship

Posted by: Paco | Aug 10 2022 16:09 utc | 34

Sanctions Delirium Tremens. I wonder who are the well paid eurocrats in charge of designing sanction packages, Hungary and Slovakia to pay for transit fees for their oil from Russia, Transneft the Russian pipeline company is unable to make the payments due to.... sanctions¡¡¡ And since we know that sanctions are sanctus sanctus sanctus, the law of God cannot be broken. Oh Lord forgive them, they do not know what they're doing.

Druzhba means friendship

Posted by: Paco | Aug 10 2022 16:09 utc | 35

Posted by: Goldhoarder | Aug 10 2022 16:00 utc | 32

I think he died of cancer, as far as I know he retained at least some of his wealth. I think Zelensky's only hope is to seek political asylum in China, dunno if they would grant it. he could be a useful tool for them in opposition to the US trying to turn Taiwan into another Ukraine.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Aug 10 2022 16:10 utc | 36

@pretzelattack | Aug 10 2022 16:10 utc | 36

I think Zelensky's only hope is to seek political asylum in China, dunno if they would grant it.
Stay clear of those pretzels.

Posted by: Norwegian | Aug 10 2022 16:14 utc | 37

fnord | Aug 10 2022 15:08 utc | 16
_____

You appear to be projecting Western mentality/insanity onto a fundamentally different sociopolitical culture.

Posted by: Doug Hillman | Aug 10 2022 16:15 utc | 38

as i see it 'b' gives a good rationale for the indefinite time line continuation of war here... to flip @ aquileia | Aug 10 2022 15:02 utc | 14 first line around - "I don't expect NATO to just leave Western Ukraine".... and i don't understand how @ bevin | Aug 10 2022 14:46 utc | 6 suggests this area will go back to poland...

i do share @ Pat Bateman | Aug 10 2022 15:35 utc | 21 viewpoint and also ask the same question at the end - "will Ukraine ever be free of the demented hatred for Russia that has consumed so much of it. If not, then what?"

but i also agree with @ circumspect | Aug 10 2022 15:54 utc | 28 also - to quote "The Anglo American NATO death cult will never let that happen. Their goals are driven by a desire to control resources and back the back of Russian leadership. They will never stop ever."

i don't see this ending any time soon.. in fact, it is the opposite... in a sane world it never would have happened, but the whole is acting insane and led by insane people at this moment in time...

@ Kouros | Aug 10 2022 16:04 utc | 33

thanks for articulating all that..

Posted by: james | Aug 10 2022 16:16 utc | 39

@Posted by: SwissGuy | Aug 10 2022 15:54 utc | 27

Wikipedia is hopelessly wrong on this, probably using official Ukrainian rubbish numbers. Before the war in 2020:

"As part of the implemented cost-cutting measures, the Ukrainian government decided that, instead of a traditional census, it would carry out a substitute — an electronic census. Just a few days before the announcement of the new results, the State Statistics Service of Ukraine (Ukrstat) reported Opens in new windowthat the country’s population was 41.9 million people. Meanwhile, it turned out that the Ukrainian population is actually far lower, reaching only 37.282 million."

Between then and the Russian invasion, more people will have left (i) from the DPR/LPR areas to Russia (ii) from the rest of the Ukraine to the West due to Ukrainian shelling and the awful economy and neoliberal gangsterism. Then add in war time emigration and you are probably in the region of only 25 million people, skewed heavily toward the older age cohorts.

If Russia takes all of Novorussiya as defined by B above, then there will be no real economy to support the return of the emigres to the West (i.e. no more transfers from the richer Russian areas to the much poorer Bandera areas) while the rebuilding of the East may pull back many of the emigres that went to Russia. Its very much in Russia's interest to produce a successful Novorussiya to compare to the moribund Banderland (what's left after Poland and Hungary take their pieces) which will continue to depopulate as the ageing population deaths are not balanced by births. Basically, the Baltic Republics experience - continuous depopulation, not aided by the xenophobia of the "native" populations. Aided even more if Russia takes and incorporates Kiev.

https://www.obserwatorfinansowy.pl/in-english/the-ukraines-population-is-lower-than-previously-believed/

Posted by: Roger | Aug 10 2022 16:37 utc | 40

Good stuff for the most part, though I must take issue with one remark, re intentions for postwar Ukraine.

mostly agricultural state, disarmed and too poor to be build up to a new threat

This is far from new. History is littered with pernicious examples: What the Allies intended for Germany post WWI; what Nazi Germany and the USSR intended for Poland post WW11; likely what the US North intended for the defeated Confederacy; what Japan intended for China post WWII; and so on.
I don't have any problem with 'demilitarized and denazified' but social engineering on this sort of scale must be condemned out of hand.

Posted by: pasha | Aug 10 2022 16:41 utc | 41

@ Posted by: Doug Hillman | Aug 10 2022 16:15 utc | 38

There is no difference here when it comes to the imperatives of the economy, and the Russian economy is for all practical matters - at least for workers - identical in institutional structure to the American one. No one can override the imperative for the capitalist firms that dominate the Russian economy to make a profit, and Russian capital - like English or American capital - bristles at national boundaries.

Maybe back in the days of the USSR, some kind of campism might have made sense, as the USSR was decidedly not imperialist. I don't think this is the case today in Russia, where even in a "multipolar" world the economy is still premised on the ever increasing accumulation of capital and exploitation of the global working class.

Russia is, if not an imperialist power, then a power which aspires to imperialist status. If the Russian economy is still too weak and too backwards to export capital to periphery nations (and I don't think this is the case - Russian capital is exported to Belarus, Kazakhstan, and soon the Donbass republics), it is still exclusively on a trajectory to become such an imperialist force in the global economy. This is clearly the aim of Duginite "multipolarism," as well.

Posted by: fnord | Aug 10 2022 16:41 utc | 42

ukraine must have lost a number of people when crimea voted to join russia...

wikipropaganda says - "January 2022 estimate
Neutral decrease 41,167,336[6]
(excluding Crimea) (36th)

Posted by: james | Aug 10 2022 16:43 utc | 43

#19 Hepcat: You are spot on. It's true that the most impressively stupid answers are given to any geopolitical question. Hypersonic discussion are most comical indeed.

But it seems like if you ask a question about the Carburetor in your old Camaro they have lots of good info. I'm sure someone could make some money on youtube mocking the pathetically stupid responses to any question about the Ukraine war ...

Posted by: Stuart Cram | Aug 10 2022 16:56 utc | 44

Stalker Zone published this FYI article yesterday, "Documents on the Use of Ukrainian Nationalists by Hitler’s Intelligence Were Published" by Russia's FSB. The Ukie organization, OUN, is the same one the CIA kept alive and nourished from 1945 onward. Some of the confessions merely need to have the Nazis replaced by CIA. And this document release isn't the only tranche as others preceded it.

As for Ukraine's ultimate fate, the SMO's goals still apply, which I see as meaning the entire area of Ukraine and have stated that since 24 February. As for the West paying for the SMO, that's 100% correct as all too many here have no clue as to the relationship of Russia's hydrocarbon industry to the Russian state despite my efforts to educate. This article provides some important basics for those knowing very little. The key takeaway is that prior to the SMO, Russia's "energy sector account[ed] for over 40% of government revenue," and that was before commodity prices spiked and more than tripled that amount. I'm always reading the Kremlin's discussions on budgetary allotments and all that extra revenue is going directly to financing Donbass reconstruction and to Russia's National Projects. In every conversation between Putin and regional leaders I've read this year, the question of there being enough funds to finance initiatives is never an issue--a very nice problem to have as a government.

Russia's in no hurry as the hybrid war is going very well by using its enemies moves against them, resulting in the destabilization of EU, NATO and the Outlaw US Empire itself. Putin has mentioned NATO's strategy of fighting Russia to the last Ukrainian and said Russia will do the same since that drains and destabilizes NATO and EU in a way Russia could never do through its own policy since it isn't a criminal nation. Yesterday was the 80th anniversary of the concert performed by the Leningrad Symphony Orchestra of Shostakovich's Symphony No. 7, in honor of which Putin gave a short speech I documented here, his closing words being:

"And this is a testament to real, great art, where works that glorify true, eternal values, unite people of all ages, nationalities and religions, affirm truth and light, which always prevail over lies, over the forces of darkness, become great for all time."

To which I wrote, We should all hope Putin's words are correct, that Truth and Light will always prevail over lies and its allied forces of darkness. For that's what this whole episode in human history's all about--the purging of the Dark Forces allied with the Outlaw US Empire so humanity can continue to develop in peace and harmony.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 10 2022 17:00 utc | 45

In last night's Round Table led by our good friend Gonzalo Lira, Dima (of the Military Summary channel) posited that one reason the West keeps fighting to the last Ukrainian is that it does not want an army which will be eventually integrated with Russia to pose a threat to...the West.

Posted by: Jonathan W | Aug 10 2022 17:00 utc | 46

Thanks Roger for clarifying to the barroom that Ukrainians have been voting with their feet for years.


It was the most prosperous part of the USSR. Since 2014 it’s become the poorest place in Europe. ukraine is poorer than Albania now !

Posted by: Exile | Aug 10 2022 17:05 utc | 47

Consider this list ....
1) The US-backed military government of South Vietnam
2) The US-backed 'democracy' of Afghanistan
3) The US-backed Iraqi government

The first had to flee on helicopters when the army of the people of Vietnam marched into Saigon. The second had to flee on helicopters as the government collapsed even before the Americans withdrew. The last is not popular and regularly loses elections only to have American influence keep a form of it in power. Protesters have stormed the government buildings in opposition to this minority government.

Those are the worst cases of course. In none of them did America build a democracy that had the support of the people. In fact, America tends to support groups that can not get the support of the majority. In none of them did America build a shining economy that was the envy of everyone in the region. Of the three, the only one that is doing halfway decently is Vietnam, which succeeded in throwing out the Americans.

And this is true elsewhere as well. Lets look at the various places where the Americans have intervened. Do any of them have a democracy that is the envy of the people of the world? Nope. Panama, invaded by Daddy Bush, is a corrupt land where dictators go to hide the money they've stolen from their people, according to the Panama Papers. Somalia isn't an example America wants to uphold about how wonderful America is to the people it invades. Libya is still a warzone that has people fleeing on perilous journeys across the Med trying to avoid being sunk by the EU navy. The parts of Syria that has been invaded by the US (northeast) and Turkiye (northwest) shows no signs of any real democracy, and a lot of corrupt business activity.

American rhetoric is full of claims about the wonders of American-style democracy and the benefits of being a part of 'The West', but none of the places where American boots have been on the ground amongst the corpses show any sign of this. America does not implant successful democracies. The economies of the places where the American boots have been are usually such to qualify the country as a 'shithole'. Nowhere do we see a thriving economy implanted with freedom and opportunity. Heck, even America doesn't really have this, nor does it actually have a functioning democracy.

For Ukraine, the future does not look bright. A shithole country sending low-paid workers to the EU to provide European industries a low-cost workforce is about the best Ukraine can expect. Of course, unless you are an oligarch, then the American sphere of influence is oligarch-wonderland, all paid for by the money stolen from the people who are otherwise stuck here.

The only real question is whether the Ukrainians have enough guts and gumption to someday force the Americans and their minions to flee Lviv by helicopters. I doubt it.

Posted by: Janis | Aug 10 2022 17:09 utc | 48

Ciaran wrote:
A related question is:
How much of the 28% of Ukrainian farmland that was “sold” to Western agri-giants (Monsanto, Cargill, et al) is in what will be Novorussiya? The answer will impact the Western response to current and future Allied territorial gains.

Do any barflies know?

I can somewhat answer this question; I'm currently an investor in Bayer (owner of Monsanto -hate the game not the player!) and the charge for them was minimal. The took a 35m euro write-down on receivables at the start of the conflict and haven't estimated any asset impairments to date. They also estimate that energy inputs (natural gas etc.) is less than 3% of total cost and is also negligible. They also stated that they won't cancel any existing contracts or sales agreements with either Russia or Ukraine (as they sell to both countries) as food security is a global concern and actions like that will exacerbate the situation. They are also currently 'reviewing' the future potential business and contracts they might engage in with Russia at this time. This is just codeword for we're gonna say we're paused and can Russia hurry things up and end this war so that we can go back to doing business with them. =)

All in all, the war has been a huge boost for agricultural businesses as Bayer's earnings are like 20% higher for the start of 2022 (versus 2021) and they expect strong robust growth and demand for their seeds, pesticides, and fertilizers.

The bolt-on health care drug business is doing nothing much great and is doing as good as most years.

Mario.

Posted by: Mario F | Aug 10 2022 17:09 utc | 49

Janis @48--

Your observation is important because that practice goes back to the Outlaw US Empire's adoption of an oligarchical governing system in 1787; so, wherever it's expanded to outside its national boundaries, that's the sort of government it prefers to install. The case history since WW2 proves that beyond doubt, and not just within those nations you named, but most importantly Occupied Europe and Asia.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 10 2022 17:23 utc | 50

Posted by: Pat Bateman | Aug 10 2022 15:35 utc | 21

"This has never been an exercise in taking as much Ukrainian land as possible. "

It is about freeing the Russian population from Nazism and the elimination of threats to all Russians. That means Odessa must be taken back into Russian control. Odessa is Russian, I know it well. It also includes the land corridor to the Black Sea because without that, Crimea will be entirely dependent on the Kerch bridge. It has always seemed the logical outcome to me.

Posted by: Bluedog57 | Aug 10 2022 17:24 utc | 51

Our host's predicted scenario for the partition of Ukropia would not be the ideal solution for either Russia or the Ukraine. Unfortunately, it may be the only practical solution given the belligerence of America and its NATOadies as well as the boneheaded stupidity of the Ukrainians.

Lenin and the Communists were not stupid. There was a very good reason why the industrial East and South were attached to the Ukraine. Not only was this to make the Ukraine a viable independent state, but more importantly it was to provide a political check on the Galician lunatics. Rabid Nazis psychopaths needed to be balanced, and moderated by, decent working class Soviets.

In retrospect things probably would have been better if the Soviets had done the Holodomor thing for real, but kept it focused on the Galicians and not stopped until there were no more; however, despite what we in the West have been heavily programmed to believe, genocide was never the Soviets' style. The Soviets believed they could salvage the western Ukrainian Nazis and turn them human again. They might even have succeeded had the Soviet Union not been dissolved and the Ukraine been able to spend a few more generations in the safety of the Soviet nation-state nursery.

Neither of those scenarios came to pass, and so now there are mad dog Nazis rampaging through the borderlands. The original plan by the Communists for dealing with this is still the best: Keep the Ukraine large enough and make it prosperous enough that the psycho Nazis are a politically marginalized minority there. The best outcome for both Russia and the Ukraine would thus be for Russia to demilitarize and denazify the Ukraine but to keep the Ukraine whole.

As far as repatriating Ukrainians, nothing could be easier. Just renationalize (with no compensation!) all of the properties that are currently owned by foreign "unfriendlies" and give genuine Ukrainians first dibs on those properties. When damaged and neglected industrial facilities get rebuilt they will be state of the art so productivity will be high. High productivity means those enterprises can afford high wages. A pro-union environment can then make those wages a reality.

Posted by: William Gruff | Aug 10 2022 17:25 utc | 52

b,

Regarding your comments to Ciarran, I found this interesting article. There are others. Ciarran may have good point.

https://www.oaklandinstitute.org/sites/oaklandinstitute.org/files/Brief_CorporateTakeoverofUkraine_0.pdf

Posted by: Alpi | Aug 10 2022 17:27 utc | 53

RT's reporting the G-7 saying, "We demand that Russia immediately hand back full control to its rightful sovereign owner, Ukraine, of the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant." Of course, that request will be denied since Ukraine isn't the sovereign owner of anything since it was taken over by the Outlaw US Empire in 2014. And IMO, that's an essential point-at-issue here that hasn't been discussed much if at all despite its factual basis.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 10 2022 17:29 utc | 54

Forgot to mention, they are not the only corporation heavily invested in land acquisition. I always wondered why all of a sudden Switzerland has lost its neutrality regarding Ukraine. Then, there it is. They are also invested in Ukraine and are trying hard to protect it. Those frozen assets will probably pay for the lost investment.

Posted by: Alpi | Aug 10 2022 17:31 utc | 55

"If ever thou beest mine, Kate, as I have a
saving faith within me tells me thou shalt, I get
thee with scambling, and thou must therefore needs
prove a good soldier-breeder: shall not thou and I,
between Saint Denis and Saint George, compound a
boy, half French, half English, that shall go to
Constantinople and take the Turk by the beard?
shall we not? what sayest thou, my fair
flower-de-luce?"

Russia should just start offering travel fare, visas, and a straight and a simple path to full citizenship to the despised farm workers of the US. just for starters, and perhaps other populations as well. they gonna need to rebuild with something more than more industry and military. farm workers. those hated messicans who pick all our crops. just steal them. most americans would applaud.

Posted by: rjb1.5 | Aug 10 2022 17:33 utc | 56

For those thinking William Gruff doesn't know what he's talking about @52, he most certainly does as the extremist OUN was formed during WW1 during the disintegration of the Hapsburg Empire, of which I've provided documentary evidence about. The OUN was used by German forces at toward the end of WW1 as it attempted to capitalize on the Russian Revolution to gain a very sizable chunk of land. OUN members were hideous from the outset and haven't changed much since.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 10 2022 17:37 utc | 57

Posted by: b | Aug 10 2022 14:54 utc | 9

There are currently 6 million Ukrainians living and working in Russia. Offering good pay will pull them back into east/south Ukraine.

Some percentage of that 6 million are volunteering to train and re-enter 404 to liberate the land and homes they fled under state persecution and Azov thuggery.

Unconfirmed reports suggest between 6 and 10 BTGs have been formed from this contingent. This explains why LPR/DPR/RF troop strength has been increasing since onset of SMO.

PS - Thanks for all your efforts. And for being reasonably tolerant when we barflies get carried away and start breaking the furniture.

Posted by: Sushi | Aug 10 2022 17:46 utc | 59

RT links as usual are blocked. Today, RT published the following:

"How Ukrainians voted for the preservation of the Soviet Union in 1991, but still ended up in an independent state later that year:"

"In this article, RT revisits the six months between the USSR's landmark referendum and the independence vote in Ukraine that somehow turned out to be enough for the republic’s population to change their minds, and explores the reasons why this outcome both put an end to the world's largest ever country and sparked off the separatist movement."

Unfortunately as I expected, there's no mention of CIA's long involvement in destabilizing Ukraine and its separatists; so, the article is missing a key component part of the Why.

Posted by: karlof1 | Aug 10 2022 17:48 utc | 60

This would only change for oil, at least, if OPEC+ decided to flood the market
Posted by: Butties | Aug 10 2022 15:45 utc

The Saudis are already near max pumping as older fields deplete and newer fields aren't as productive as the old ones once were. A lot of fracking, water injection and lateral drilling happening to keep present levels. The days of cheap, easy to extract Saudi oil are slowly coming to an end.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/energy/saudi-arabia-reveals-oil-output-is-near-its-ceiling/2022/07/20/eff7aff6-081b-11ed-80b6-43f2bfcc6662_story.html

I'm sure Sleepy Joe was told as much on his last visit, hopefully his handlers were listening because Joe probably barely remembers he was in SA, it has been a few days.

Posted by: Old canadian | Aug 10 2022 17:52 utc | 61

The large movements of history can be resisted for a while and at great costs… but, eventually, like a dammed river, history returns to its natural bed… Ukraine will disappear in the sands of history while Russia takes what has been and remains Russia’s.

Posted by: Minamoto | Aug 10 2022 17:56 utc | 62

We hear about Russia "paying for the invasion of Ukraine with gas & oil sales." Consider a hypothetical that Russia is a closed economy. Within that economy, she has energy resources, manufacturing capability, trained workers, and trained soldiers. Together, these resources are sufficient to mount a capable, strong army, sufficient for the SMO in Ukraine and probably more. In the real world, sanctions make exports and imports more difficult, but in terms of mounting a fighting force, make no difference whatsoever.

Posted by: Tedder | Aug 10 2022 17:57 utc | 63

Thank You Gruff once again for your insightful comment

Posted by: ld | Aug 10 2022 18:04 utc | 64

I don't think if the West lifts all its sanctions, Russia would revert to the status quo in its relation with the West. The West has shown its evil intentions towards Russia too openly that the Russian authority would be foolish to ever trust the West again. So talks of getting cheap gas from Russia is a no-starter.

Posted by: Steve | Aug 10 2022 18:06 utc | 65

Posted by: fnord | Aug 10 2022 15:08 utc | 16

I find it unlikely that high wages will be offered to encourage re-settlement. Internal refugees will be re-settled wherever there's still industry and they will have the "choice" of working for poverty wages or attempting to make their way into Western Europe where western capitalists will take advantage of them.

The alternate proposition is that the diaspora is already familiar with the moral decline of the West and want nothing to do with it. One facet of this moral decline is the intellectual and sexual elasticity which you so stoutly defend here on MoA.

As for "poverty wages" the RF has already commenced paying social benefits to the inhabitants and, given the scale of reconstruction necessary, there will likely be significant demand for a range of skills. Years ago the poor and starving abandoned Ireland to escape the conditions imposed by the British. Later generations returned because: A) It is a beautiful place; B) It is their homeland; C) It embodies the culture they wish to participate in and develop; D) The stout is pretty damn good; E) As is the whiskey; F) And the cara baineann.

Aside from D and E, all the rest will draw the return of the diaspora.

Posted by: Sushi | Aug 10 2022 18:08 utc | 66

William Gruff @ #29

People who cheerlead (sic) for capitalism really need to figure out how it works. You don't necessarily need Marx-level understanding of capitalism, but a basic feel for how supply and demand work on local and global scales would be really helpful.

Ok Russia has plentiful supply and is receiving its required fiscal response for its supply to the Non Sanctioners. The Sanctioners have great demand but no supply. Opec+, re oil, are not responding to the supply demand so how does your theory of 'cheerlead capitalism', of supply and demand work out?

The Goose is in the oven!

Posted by: Butties | Aug 10 2022 18:08 utc | 67

Gruff | Aug 10 2022 17:25 utc

Our host's predicted scenario for the partition of Ukropia would not be the ideal solution for either Russia or the Ukraine. Unfortunately, it may be the only practical solution given the belligerence of America and its NATOadies as well as the boneheaded stupidity of the Ukrainians.

Lenin and the Communists were not stupid. There was a very good reason why the industrial East and South were attached to the Ukraine. Not only was this to make the Ukraine a viable independent state, but more importantly it was to provide a political check on the Galician lunatics. Rabid Nazis psychopaths needed to be balanced, and moderated by, decent working class Soviets.

I said something similar some months ago ... that Ukraine as a complete state is in Russia's interests. She does not want to support the failed economy in the West of the country, and the only stable result is a country with the Eastern voters to counterbalance the crazies in the West.

The fly in the ointment is Russia's recognition of DPR and LPR, so how could those states rejoin Ukraine. Perhaps as part of a federation of states a la Minsk agreements?

Posted by: jonku | Aug 10 2022 18:21 utc | 68

Posted by: b | Aug 10 2022 15:58 utc | 31

Some nutty Australian website recently claimed that but it gave zero sources for it.

A California think tank gives a detailed accounting of foreign land investment in Ukraine.


The fate of Ukraine’s agricultural sector is on shaky ground. Last year, the Oakland Institute reported that over 1.6 million hectares (ha) of land in Ukraine are now under the control of foreign-based corporations. Further research has allowed for the identification of additional foreign investments. Some estimates now bring the total of Ukrainian farmland controlled by foreign companies to over 2.2 million ha;1 however, research has also identified important grey areas around land tenure in the country, and who actually controls land in Ukraine today is difficult to ascertain.

SOURCE
https://www.oaklandinstitute.org/blog/who-owns-agricultural-land-ukraine

If the article is correct it helps to some extent explain the reason Denmark and France are pro Z and possibly explains the Finnish embrace of NATO.

Posted by: Sushi | Aug 10 2022 18:25 utc | 69

The alternate proposition is that the diaspora is already familiar with the moral decline of the West and want nothing to do with it.

As sympathetic as I often am to reaction, history is replete of examples of people willingly going over to morally "degenerate" societies. Settlers in amerika voluntarily went native far more often than natives voluntarily adopted European customs. This was such a problem for colonial administrators that a whole legal apparatus governing racial relations, and an internal police force governing "whiteness" via the disciplining of white trash, had to be developed on the colonial frontier. The risk of slaves, indentured whites, and natives rising together against the colonial ruling class was too big to ignore. As sympathetic as I am to the DDR, people more often crossed over into West Germany than the other way around. Ditto the DPRK and amerikan occupied Korea.

Why is this? Personally, I think liberalism has something going for it when it comes to its permissiveness. People like drugs and debauchery. A really free society should offer plenty of both. Russian society doesn't seem to offer much of either right now. I also don't suspect it can compete, yet, on wage terms with western countries. I know several people in the world of finance tech that insist this war has been great for them because they've been able to hire Ukrainian programmers on the cheap. Similarly, China and India are beginning to offer bright vistas for the global programming labor pool, not to mention places in Latin America like Mexico or Chile. Now, that's just one industry, but wage pressure isn't going to be easy short of a nationalization campaign that seems out of character in an oligarchized economy.

Posted by: fnord | Aug 10 2022 18:25 utc | 70

I was a little hasty with posting my above comment and forgot the tag, so here goes:
@ Posted by: Sushi | Aug 10 2022 18:08 utc | 65

See above. Sorry for the double post. xo

Posted by: fnord | Aug 10 2022 18:26 utc | 71

"Looks like the EU are increasing sanctions against Russia and not lowering them.

EU members are discussing the parameters of a new package of anti-Russian sanctions, including a possible ban on issuing Schengen visas"

No. Just another shot in the foot. No Russian tourists = no income. They'll visit Asian, Arab, and ex-Soviet countries instead. And increase internal tourism.

No work visas = no cheap labor import, nor steal of very qualified workers.

Russia, again, thanks them for their hatred-based stupidity in creating more and more illegal sanctions with boomerang effect.

Also, in that package (and already before) some sanctions are being lifted. Ex: banks/companies that make the transactions/export of cereals and other essential goods for third countries.

In Russia, there's more money going in, fewer money getting out, import substitution by local/national companies, more integration with BRICS, SCO, EAEU, and other partners like Turkey.
A much stronger ruble, and acceleration of de-dollarization in commerce with all Russian/Chinese partners of dialogue.

In Europe, there's only propaganda, inflation, recession, Eurozone crisis on the horizon, and lack of confidence for the comming winter. Some goverments are already fallig. Protests, riots, and regime change are expected in the next months/year.
The production is in China, the energy was in Russia. And now it's even more dependent on USA.

Wages are stagnated, European Union was an attack on sovereignty and democracy, and the move towards an USAmericanized model of Financialized Capitalism (NeoLiberalism = everything for the rich, austerity for the poor) created inequality as only seen before the Keynesian period.
And after decades of USAmericanized propaganda in MainstreamMedia, the distrust in Left wing is so big, that people are forced to chose between NeoLibs (Macron, Biden) or Fascist (Le Pen, Trump).

From my European and Social-Democratic point of view (I was always anti-NATO, and I am anti-€uro since 2011, and I think Bernie Sanders is the only decent thing in USA politics, and even him would struggle to do any good in the current oligarchic regime) this is a catastrophe!

What USA fails to see is that although this European submission might help the USA stay afloat, in the mid/long term game, the fall of Europe is also the fall of USA. Because if Europe depends on USA, then in a globalist system that means USA also depends on Europe. And because the rest of the world will never go back to the Unipolar dictatorship of "either pay in dollars and obey to USA oligarchy's interests, or get invaded or at least suffer a coup" aka "rules based world order".

Ukraine was just a pawn.
As well as Georgia, and Taiwan, etc.
All sacrificed.
Europe, the queen, was also sacrificed.
Russia and China have better and better prospects, and instead of sacrificing their pawns, they created an extensive network of more Knights, Towers, and Bishops.
On the other side the King, USA, faces a certain check-mate in the future.
Tick-tack, tick-tack. Just a matter of time.
Those that don't see this, don't see anything.

The fact that some delusional people in USA still look at Biden/Kamala/Pelosi as a good alternative to Trump, and the fact that on the other side some even more delusional people think Trump, again, is a better alternative to the current administration, just prooves what I've said.
The Empire of Lies is rotting.
Billions for war, at the same time people don't trust elections, are not represented in Congress, billionaires richer than ever do space tourism, while on earth there are people with no healthcare and no home...
This, in my dictionary, is the definition of a sh*thole.

And all those corrupt and ignorant leaders in Europe that want the USAmericanization at all costs, from entering NATO to make structural reforms towards an economy of pretend-money and pornographic inequality, must be crazy if they think the people will let them follow that plan till the end.

Either regimes start changing in a domino effect, or the illegal boomerang sanctions will be lifted by popular demand even before the Russian SMO ends. Because, let's face it, who the f*ck really wants cold and recession just to help Zelensky+Friends buy another mansion and help Lockeed Martin reach record profits?

Posted by: Carlos Marques | Aug 10 2022 18:28 utc | 72

It's tragic to see that so many Ukrainians were tricked by the lies of Anglo-Atlanticist elites who only wanted to use Ukraine to weaken Russia and prevent the rise of Eurasian power. Ukrainians just do not understand the brutality of West european-American colonialism. Atlanticist capitalists only care about stealing Eurasian resources and guranteeing another 500 years of amer-anglo-atlanticist (white, anglo saxon, proestant, non-slav) colonialist hegemony--this time via financial domination of the developing world. Are Russia and China benevolent selfless nations? No nation is. But at least they genuinely believe in sovereignty and real long-term development. America is just the new vampire that replaced the British empire after WW2. USA is very very good at propaganda and showmanship--after all it created Hollywood, Elvis and the CIA. Maidan protestors were tricked by the "show." But at root, America is a slaver nation who will not stop until all nations are at its feet. Sadly, Ukraine made a deal with the wrong devil--nationalists were blinded by emotion and an ignorance of American history. They forgot Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, Yugoslavia, Vietnam. Now add Ukraine to the list. It's not "pro-Russian" to always let history be your guide!

Posted by: TGL | Aug 10 2022 18:29 utc | 73

» If the 'west' really wants to deprive Russia of money it must immediately lift the sanctions and restart importing oil, gas and coal from Russia at then much lower prices. «

It can do much BETTER. Open up NS2 and sign a 30 year contract to lock in discounted prices.
Russia benefits because it now has a time horizon for the necessary investments.

Of course, Europe will have to shed the neo-Liberal unified "spot market" pricing.
And it's Green+Coal ambitions to shed fossil fuels in the ‘near’ future.

As it is now, the poor in Europe are ‘financing‘ (whatever that means) Putin's war by having their energy bills increase by factors of 10× in the near future and their economy implode.

Posted by: Webej | Aug 10 2022 18:37 utc | 74

Capitalism is foremost an ideology of personal property and rights of ownership and disposition thereof enforced by government--customs and habits of a society. It is neither the exchange itself between people nor the quanties of things, tangible and intangible.

Posted by: sln2002 | Aug 10 2022 18:38 utc | 75

Posted by: Roger | Aug 10 2022 16:37 utc | 40

Thanks for your reply and the link. Interesting...

Posted by: SwissGuy | Aug 10 2022 18:53 utc | 76

Posted by: jonku | Aug 10 2022 18:21 utc | 67

"The fly in the ointment is Russia's recognition of DPR and LPR, so how could those states rejoin Ukraine. Perhaps as part of a federation of states a la Minsk agreements?"

There is no real need for a reunited Ukraine. Independent Novorussia (including Donbass or not) and Malorussia (rump Ukraine) with a connection to Russia and Belarus as union states could be done if necessary.

Posted by: Blue Dotterel | Aug 10 2022 18:53 utc | 77

Posted by: Pat Bateman | Aug 10 2022 15:35 utc | 21

« This has never been an exercise in taking as much Ukrainian land as possible. »

The problem with referring to Crimea or the Donbas as Ukrainian, or the people as Ukrainians, ignores the fact that these land have been Russian for centuries, the people are Russian and speak Russian, and it is part of Russian civilization. Ukraine is entirely the creation of the Soviet Union, which kept stating that ethnicity and nationality were out-dated and had been overwon by communist mankind. There was no Ukrainian state until the Soviets created one, artificially putting Novorossiya and later Crimea in there to balance the Austro-Hungarian ex-Polish lands that were constituted to be the Western part of this new ‘Ukraine’.
The implosion of the Soviet Union left 25-30 million Russians and a lot of traditionally Russian land outside the border of the Soviet Russian State.
Ukraine has attempted an ethnogenesis the past 3 decades and a virulent anti-Russia(n) campaign, but the fact is that much of the population and the land is not particularly ‘Ukrainian’, so the label has little meaning. All the people claiming that Ukrainians are fighting for their own land or the land of Ukraine are seriously misinformed about the meaning of such labels, which are extended way beyond what facts support, kind of like the Covid gen-therapy was billed as a ‘vaccine’ and suddenly everybody started reasoning about it as if it was like the traditional vaccine concept familiar to all.

Posted by: Webej | Aug 10 2022 18:53 utc | 78

@ Posted by: Widespreadhaze | Aug 10 2022 15:24 utc | 18

Your comment is theoretically correct, but obviously not congruent to the notions entertained by the sanctionista's. Any country trading internationally still has to account for the value of things you are buying and selling, which determines the value of your currency ... otherwise Mozambique could go on an investment binge on its own sovereign currency.

The whole idea that a country can only do something if it has enough money is of course childish.
The sanctions are obviously also a misconstrual of how economics works; Putin did not run out of money, and in fact, you can argue that it is the poor in the EU that are paying for the extra costs of Putin's campaign instead of drying out his money well.

Posted by: Webej | Aug 10 2022 18:59 utc | 79

If the article is correct it helps to some extent explain the reason Denmark and France are pro Z

Posted by: Sushi | Aug 10 2022 18:25 utc | 68

What accusation against the French? There's scarcely any mention of the French in your source; Just a company incorporated in France; could be anybody.

Posted by: laguarre | Aug 10 2022 19:00 utc | 80

@b,

just read your post and haven't read any of the commenters'. I remember your comments regarding the East Ukraine industrial infrastructures and the western Ukraine Black Soil agricultural riches. Prior to reading your thesis, I've read long ago (like since 1914) in China's political commentaries of the same thesis. That means these facts are actually well known, at least to true political analysts and experts. As such, one can't help but be contemptuous of Western MSM for their amateurish journalism. And they need Canadians to tell them about these data?

How did the West sink so low?

Posted by: Oriental Voice | Aug 10 2022 19:05 utc | 81

sln2002 @74

Capitalism is foremost an ideology of personal property and rights of ownership and disposition thereof enforced by government--customs and habits of a society. It is neither the exchange itself between people nor the quanties of things, tangible and intangible.

Exactly. Medieval Europe had markets as did ancient Rome, ancient Egypt, and neolithic villages. Alas, it is very hard to get it into people's heads that you can replace capitalism and still have markets, "OMG how will we live without markets!"

Posted by: LightYearsFromHome | Aug 10 2022 19:07 utc | 82

Aside from D and E, all the rest will draw the return of the diaspora.

Posted by: Sushi | Aug 10 2022 18:08 utc

Re-attracting the diaspora also depends on the right-of-return rules. Then, Ireland allowed citizenship to the grandchildren of diaspora citizens. Italy's rules were, politely, convoluted. Denmark, foreign born children have to decide by their 18th birthday if they want to be Danish citizens.

So given that at this point, no one knows what the gov't Ukraine will be, let alone what its return/immigration policy will be like in the aftermath, forecasting who will even be allowed back is not possible.


Posted by: Old canadian | Aug 10 2022 19:08 utc | 83

Roger Waters unleashed! Amazing talent with amazing geopolitical insights on Russia and China:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iZsRj3_iDfM

Posted by: Sam Smith | Aug 10 2022 19:10 utc | 84

jonku @67: "The fly in the ointment is Russia's recognition of DPR and LPR, so how could those states rejoin Ukraine. Perhaps as part of a federation of states a la Minsk agreements?"

Yes, something like that seems most reasonable.

Whatever the Ukraine is once the dust settles, we know for sure it will be different from what it was in 2021. Relatively whole would be best, but if that cannot be arranged then carve out the cancer for Europe to enjoy and make countries out of what is left over.

Posted by: William Gruff | Aug 10 2022 19:11 utc | 85

Re: Zaporizhia NPP disconnecting from the Ukraine/European grid

The 'European grid' for Ukraine is technically the European Network of Transmission System Operators - East (ENTSO-E). Lint to interactive map here.

Ukraine had planned to connect to ENTSO-E for a long time (Maidan) and disconnect from the Russian grid, but rushed the complex switchover in February. ENTSO operators were not happy with suddenly being saddled with a risky connection to Ukraine's clunky transmission grid (years of corruption and neglect), but the US/NATO insisted. Go figure.

Ukraine had a surplus of cheap (nuclear) power overbuilt by the Soviets, and was eager to connect/trade with Europe. Ukraine wholesale electricity is produced at about a third the cost of European electricity, so this is now significant revenue source for Ukrainian oligarchs... er, 'the Ukraine government'. Ukraine officially started exporting power to ENTSO-E in July.

The high-voltage transmission lines run to Slovakia, Hungary and Romania, but there is no particular geographical 'customer' when you trade on a network. Neither Zaporizhia NPP nor Zaporizhia TEP have a direct, high-voltage connection to ENTSO-E, but they fed the Ukrainian grid operated by horribly-corrupt Ukrenergo. Ukraine was approved to export up to 250MW of capacity to ENTSO-E starting Aug 1st.

If Russia disconnects Zaporizhia NPP from the Ukrainian grid, it will not really impact any electric customers in Ukraine, i.e., nobody is losing their electricity on that grid. What it *will do* is interfere with Ukraine's (and probably EU) oligarchs potentially massive profits from power export to Europe. The Ukraine (and US) government generally despises 'little-people' Ukrainians, so - if anyone - they will be made to suffer from expensive, unreliable power at the expense of profitable European power exports.

Crimea relies entirely on its own power and whatever is imported across the Crimean bridge. Because of that, Crimea is sync'd to the Russia grid. Russia isn't interested in fattening up Ukrainian oligarchs with 'free' Zaporizhia power they can export. Synchronizing Zaporizhia to the Russian grid ensures that cheap, reliable power is generated for use by the people of (former) Ukraine, not generated for oligarch profits.

Whether Ukraine should even use nuclear, thermal (coal) or some other form of generation is important but another discussion entirely.

Posted by: PavewayIV | Aug 10 2022 19:18 utc | 86

@ Alpi | Aug 10 2022 17:27 utc | 53 // 55

on the topic of who owns the agricultural land in ukraine - that is a very helpful link alpi...

i see @ Sushi | Aug 10 2022 18:25 utc | 68 is working with the same website and data... others might want to check out these links more closely.. thanks...

@ PavewayIV | Aug 10 2022 19:18 utc | 85

fascinating.. thanks for broadening my perspective on all this..

Posted by: james | Aug 10 2022 19:25 utc | 87

you can replace capitalism and still have markets
Posted by: LightYearsFromHome | Aug 10 2022 19:07 utc | 81

yes. Moreover, possession is not per se a unique property ha. ha. of capitalism. What properties ha. ha. and processes then differentiate capitalism from all other recognizable, communicative forms of ownership?

Posted by: sln2002 | Aug 10 2022 19:27 utc | 88

@Osinttechnical and others (@EliotHiggins) on twitter have the latest sat images of the damage sustained in Crimea. Two craters are distinctly visible and also damaged planes. Yesterday we saw the footage that showed a structural steel beam that had been hurled from the base to the adjoining parking lot skewering some Russian colonist's SUV. One can only imagine the damage to whatever was parked on the tarmac. Well done, Ukraine.

Posted by: safetyfirst | Aug 10 2022 19:31 utc | 89

re TGL | Aug 10 2022 18:29 utc | 72

".... USA is very very good at propaganda and showmanship--after all it created Hollywood, Elvis and the CIA. Maidan protestors were tricked by the "show." But at root, America is a slaver nation who will not stop until all nations are at its feet...."

good summary analysis there.
& I got a good laugh out of the hollywood trio, never seen those three strung together lol :):) .....perhaps I would replace the word "Elvis" with "Las Vegas"

It's the effectiveness of the US-Western propaganda machine, the Great Wurlitzer, more so than anything else that holds the US-centralized Empire together, more so than the interventions, coups, militarism and brute force per se.

Posted by: michaelj72 | Aug 10 2022 19:36 utc | 90

It's important to post this information here since yesterday we had purported report from Crimea about how "it was nothing" and just a "fire". This site does not provide factual information and is an echo chamber for state propaganda, and lurkers should note it. It is not a forum of thought, discussion, actual critical thought, or ideas.

Posted by: safetyfirst | Aug 10 2022 19:40 utc | 91

bellingcat again yenwoda?

Posted by: pretzelattack | Aug 10 2022 19:40 utc | 92

For more than 10 years the Ukrainians couldn't find well paid, or correctly paid jobs in Ukraine. People with higher education couldn't find jobs for their specialty, if they found a job, that didn't pay. So, there was a massive immigration for work, mostly to Poland. For example, the menial jobs such as cleaning in hospitals was mainly done by Ukrainians, and most of them were with higher education. Most such companies that employed them were Ukrainian-Polish firms. They actually exploited those workers. The largest country in Europe was exporting menial workers to former Warsaw Pact countries, cleaners, agricultural seasonal workers and such like.

The country, people and wealth was exploited and stolen by few oligarchs. The rest were poor and getting even poorer. This was the same even in the days of Julia Timoshenko regime. She had her husband were also oligarchs. In every city, you'd find few quite rich people, families, but the rest are/were poor. If there was no housing from the soviet days, people would be living in sheds. That was the Ukrainian governance.

Now, if Russian Federation takes over Kievski, Vinnitski, Sumskii, Kharkovski, Cherkasski, Zhytomirski, Dnipropetrovski, Nikolyevski, Odesski oblasts, people won't go against the Russian administration. Most people from these areas/oblasts had worked in Russia, 2000, 3000 kms further away from Moscow. But, at least in Russia, the Ukrainians got work on their specialties, not as menial workers. (I have worked with Ukrainians in a city more then 2220 kms from Moscow. They worked as engineers, technicians, mechanics and so on.) They were treated equally. Their degrees (diplomas) were recognised. They worked and didn't lose their dignity. Not as in Poland, then and now. You won't find Ukrainian engineers working in their own specialties, but as manual workers. That's the difference.

When Russian Federation takes over an Ukrainian oblast, the inhabitants are treated equally. Certain areas in Russia would take those liberated Ukrainian areas under their wing. They'd come and help rebuild those areas. RF will give pension to older people.

The thing is, if Russia liberate an Ukrainian region, the inhabitants would be glad to see the back of Zelly's regime. By the time RF forces would be there, all those unwanted elements would have gone a long ago. There are lot of Ukrainians waiting to be liberated.

Posted by: rp | Aug 10 2022 19:45 utc | 93


@88, safetyfirst: If you want to "credit" anyone for bombing Crimea it's US taxpayers. You might also thank the UN for supporting US taxpayers' violent overthrow of Ukr's elected government in 2014.

Posted by: susan mullen | Aug 10 2022 19:47 utc | 94

pretzelattack @91

Is there a difference?

Posted by: William Gruff | Aug 10 2022 19:49 utc | 95

5 Aug, N. Korea has selected workers to be dispatched to eastern Ukraine

A source in Russia told Daily NK on July 25 that the North Korean authorities had instructed companies operating in Russia to get ready to send workers to the war zone. North Korean authorities are planning to send more than a thousand workers who are already in Russia to the Donbas region.
[...]
“The Overseas Construction Leadership Bureau, the Rungna Guidance Bureau, the Ministry of Fisheries, and the Ministry of Railways have assigned some workers on the waiting list to war areas [in Ukraine]. Those are the same organizations that recruited most workers dispatched to Russia in the past,” said a source inside North Korea.

North Korean authorities apparently plan to start by sending workers who are already in Russia to the Donbas region and then send additional workers in North Korea if requested by the Russian government. ... “The Workers’ Party is making eager preparations because it regards the Russian request as a good opportunity to acquire foreign currency,” he added.

also machinery and parts19 July, Russian envoy says North Korea could send workers to breakaway Ukrainian states

in related G7 news, DPRK workers are actually 100K fight force hired by the RF to replace 70K-80K combat losses.

Posted by: sln2002 | Aug 10 2022 19:51 utc | 96

@pretzelattack, if you insist:

https://twitter.com/EliotHiggins/status/1557441267109400576

Looks like one for the annals of modern warfare, I doubt this much operational aviation equipment has been destroyed in a single attack since WW2.

Posted by: Yenwoda | Aug 10 2022 19:53 utc | 97

in related G7 news, DPRK workers are actually 100K fight force hired by the RF to replace 70K-80K combat losses.

Posted by: sln2002 | Aug 10 2022 19:51 utc | 95
---------

Really?!
Where did you get that "70K-80K combat losses?" From Bellingcat? From Western MSM? Or from Lusia Arestowich?

Posted by: rp | Aug 10 2022 19:55 utc | 98

Yesterday, I posted a video from the tarmac of a burned-out Su-24 being hosed down. Got a couple replies saying that it was fake, archived footage of Ukrainian losses, etc. Lol.

Posted by: Yenwoda | Aug 10 2022 19:56 utc | 99

Posted by: Yenwoda | Aug 10 2022 19:53 utc | 96
----
Who is that a-hole, Elliot Higgins, another Lusia Arestowich, eh Galicien?

Posted by: rp | Aug 10 2022 19:57 utc | 100

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