Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
December 14, 2022

U.S. To Send More Wunderwaffen To Ukraine

A new round of Wunderwaffen deliveries to Ukraine is taking place. It is unlikely to change the strategic or even operational picture of the war.

The U.S. and its 'allies' are engaged in a boil-the-frog operation in which they steadily increase the lethality and complexity of arms and other support they deliver to Ukraine. At some point in time this process will cross Russian red lines. That's when it will become really interesting ...

The newest gimmick to be deployed is the Patriot air defense system likely soon to be followed by main battle tanks:

The U.S. is poised to approve sending a Patriot missile battery to Ukraine, finally agreeing to an urgent request from Ukrainian leaders desperate for more robust weapons to shoot down incoming Russian missiles, U.S. officials said Tuesday.

The approval is likely to come later this week and could be announced as early as Thursday, said three officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because the decision is not final and has not been made public. Two of the officials said the Patriot will come from Pentagon stocks and be moved from another country overseas.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy pressed Western leaders as recently as Monday to provide more advanced weapons to help his country in its war with Russia. The Patriot would be the most advanced surface-to-air missile system the West has provided to Ukraine to help repel Russian aerial attacks.

During a video conference on Monday, Zelenskyy told host Germany and other leaders of the Group of Seven industrial powers that his country needed long-range missiles, modern tanks, artillery, missile batteries and other high-tech air defense systems to counter Russian attacks that have knocked out electricity and water supplies for millions of Ukrainians.

He acknowledged that, “Unfortunately, Russia still has an advantage in artillery and missiles.”

Well, yes, the artillery advantage the Russian army has in the current battle for Bakhmut is nine to one or even higher:

“For every artillery piece we have, they have nine,” said one soldier.

NATO no longer has the equipment and ammunition reserves to change that.

As for the Patriot, the "Phased Array Tracking Radar to Intercept on Target": Training for them takes quite some time and unless Ukrainians have already been secretly trained on them for several months they will have to be deployed with NATO soldiers or 'former' soldiers to have any effect:

Asked about training, Brig. Gen. Patrick Ryder, the Pentagon press secretary, said that in general the U.S. takes those needs into consideration when providing complicated weapons systems to Ukraine, such as the High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, known as HIMARS. Currently U.S. forces are training Ukrainian troops on a number of systems, including the HIMARS, in other European countries, such as Germany.
The entire system, which includes a phased array radar, a control station, computers and generators, typically requires about 90 soldiers to operate and maintain, however only three soldiers are needed to actually fire it, according to the Army.

The HIMARS missiles, the previous Wunderwaffen, are now routinely shot down by Russian missile and air defense systems:

The anti-aircraft defence forces shot down two drones in the areas of Zhytlovka and Kremennaya (Lugansk People's Republic).

In addition, two HIMARS MLRS rounds were intercepted near Perovomaysk (Lugansk People's Republic) and a HARM rocket near Makarovka (Kherson region).

The Patriot battery to be deployed to Ukraine is likely one of those that the U.S. currently has in Poland. A German Patriot unit will be deployed to replace it.

The phased array radar that Patriot systems use are good but they are also a weakness. They are visible from satellites with Synthetic Aperture Radar. As researchers have found some years ago:

Amid a busy few weeks of nuclear-related news, an Israeli researcher made a very surprising OSINT discovery that flew somewhat under the radar. As explained in a Medium article, Israeli GIS analyst Harel Dan noticed that when he accidentally adjusted the noise levels of the imagery produced from the SENTINEL-1 satellite constellation, a bunch of colored Xs suddenly appeared all over the globe.

SENTINEL-1’s C-band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) operates at a centre frequency of 5.405 GHz, which conveniently sits within the range of the military frequency used for land, airborne, and naval radar systems (5.250-5.850 GHz)—including the AN/MPQ-53/65 phased array radars that form the backbone of a Patriot battery’s command and control system. Therefore, Harel correctly hypothesized that some of the Xs that appeared in the SENTINEL-1 images could be triggered by interference from Patriot radar systems.

Using this logic, he was able to use the Xs to pinpoint the locations of Patriot batteries in several Middle Eastern countries, including Qatar, Bahrain, Jordan, Kuwait, and Saudi Arabia.


While SENTINEL-1 images of Ukraine will now likely be censored there is no need for Russia to use those. It has its own SAR systems:

Kondor, GRAU index 14F133, is a series of Earth imaging or military reconnaissance satellites developed by NPO Mashinostroyeniya for the Russian Aerospace Defence Forces which in 2015 became the Russian Space Forces and export customers.
Kondor satellites are equipped to carry either synthetic aperture radar or electro-optical imaging payloads, with the first satellite, and are launched using the Strela carrier rocket, developed by NPO Mashinostroyeniya from retired UR-100 NUTTKh missiles.

Process the SAR data, look for 'noise' crosses, program the coordinates into a number of suicide drones of Iranian design and send them off. This should take no more than an hour. The Russian Reconnaissance Strike Complex is designed to do that:

The Reconnaissance Strike Complex (разведивательно-ударный комплех-RYK) was designed for the coordinated employment of high-precision, long- range weapons linked to real-time intelligence data and precise targeting provided to a fused intelligence and fire-direction center. The RYK functioned at operational depths using surface-to-surface missile systems and aircraft-delivered “smart” munitions. The Reconnaissance Fire Complex (разведивательно-огновой комплех ROK) was the tactical equivalent.
The Reconnaissance Fire System (ROS) is designed to detect, engage and destroy enemy targets in near-real time within the range of tactical units (maneuver battalion and brigade with supporting artillery). On occasion, an artillery brigade or helicopter gunship brigade (a tactical/operational formation) could conduct ROS missions. However, Army Corps and Army Group units normally conduct RYS missions-engaging, detecting and destroying operational targets in near-real time using longer-range reconnaissance and strike systems (especially SSM and aviation systems).

Will the Patriot radar move during the Russian reaction time interval between reconnaissance and strike? I have my doubts.

Wikipedia says that a Patriot battery costs about $1 billion. The radar is the thing that makes these so expensive. Each of its missile costs about $3 million. The suicide drones are maybe $10,000 each. Now do the math ...

The most modern missiles Patriot system use have a maximum reach of some 60 kilometer (37 miles). One battery can thus cover a bubble with a 120 kilometer diameter. It may be good for Kiev or Odessa but is nothing that will solve the general military problem Ukraine has.

The Russian forces are superior in technology, personnel and fire power. There is no chance, and never has been, for Ukraine to win that match. No Wunderwaffen, British marines with sea drones or U.S. Patriot systems, will change those basic facts.

Posted by b on December 14, 2022 at 9:47 UTC | Permalink

next page »

Russia should wait for the Patriot System to be set up, and then demonstrate one of the conventionally armed Hypersonic missiles on it.

Posted by: DDK | Dec 14 2022 10:10 utc | 1

The West has already crossed the red lines outlined by Putin at the beginning of the Special Military Operation (SMO). After General Surovikin takes and secures the Donbas, the conflict will escalate to nuclear war soon after. Most likely Russia will take out the USA in the first hour of the nuclear conflict. Then if any of the other 29 NATO nations launches, Russia will totally destroy those nations just as it did the USA.

Posted by: young | Dec 14 2022 10:12 utc | 2

After General Surovikin takes and secures the Donbas, the conflict will escalate to nuclear war soon after
Posted by: young | Dec 14 2022 10:12 utc | 2

You have to buy more medication because your stash has to last 5-10 years until Baldie solves the 4 new regions, part of Russia now but only on paper.

Posted by: rk | Dec 14 2022 10:25 utc | 3

Russia has some wonderland not yet used. All about letting the others show their cards first. Houthies didn't have a problem with Abrams. Will be be interesting watching Abrams stolidly marching into 152mm guns. Don't tank a tank to a Russian artillery fight.

Mighty patriots?how many launcher radar combo's? Well there are swords that loo pretty and can be hung on the wall and there are swords that were and can be used in battle. I can look up BUK or s- series system consists of and there are multiple units designed to be set up as stand alone or integrated.

Patriot, I look that up and it seems to consist of one launcher with perhaps four missiles depending on range and anothe unit as a radar. Several missiles per target required.... Run a few dirt cheap decoy drones over them first followed by the strike drones or missiles and bobs your uncle.

I think US will send just enough to act as a "Get well soon" card.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Dec 14 2022 10:34 utc | 4

Excellent summation & refs. B. Thank you.

TL&DR Yet more BS propaganda, but big bucks for US MIC ... same as it ever was ... Situ, no change.

Yes, indeed at ~$3.5M per missile fired, with a demonstrated combat success rate so far of ~0% ... how much ammo, ie how many 'farking' missiles will be supplied ?

Ukies fire two S-300 or Buk missiles to have a 'reasonable' chance of intercepting a single RF inbound missile or medium sized drone. Patriot firing 2 x missiles to have a better than 0% of a successful interception at a combined ~$7M cost.

Small arms, crew-served weapons, mortars, artillery, AD systems are all useless junk, without ammunition.

How many Patriot missile reloads does Empire have ? How many are manufactured per month ? Hm ?

Given missile, cruise missile, dumb & remote command/control drones being fired in echelon waves of up to 100, that's a minimum of ~100-200 patriot missiles to take down a percentage at an ammo cost of ~$350-700Million ... for a % of hits re only a single strike wave ?!

RF would likely fire old/re-purposed/salvaged war stocks missiles(SRBMs/MRBMs) with a discarded booster at Patriot defended targets, as Patriots are known to highly prefer to engage/target the discarded booster stage/missile body, as the actual detached warhead continues on to its target, whilst a concurrent second echelon drone swarm takes out the 'firing/detected' Patriot battery, whilst they try to reload or go, 'Shit! I'm out!'.

Patriot cannot defend against NOE small drones. Oh wait, those morale boosting .50Cal Ma Deuces will provide point AD Suppression (NOT Defense!) against un-piloted drones ... which cannot be 'suppressed' ?

Ukie has already declared it is out of missiles to fire for it's pre '91 S-300s & Buks ... and also admitted that they are out of circa 18 year dead stock Stinger Manpads ...

Kiev is starting to feel the shortage of anti-air capabilities with no adequate restocking in sight, a senior Ukrainian official told the outlet

Ukraine running out of vital weapons – Financial Times

Ukraine is exhausting its supplies of munitions and spare parts for the Soviet-era S-300 and Buk air defense systems used to counter Russian strikes on the nation’s energy infrastructure, the Financial Times reported on Tuesday, citing a senior Ukrainian military official.

The Ukrainian Air Force’s chief spokesperson, Colonel Yury Ignat, told the outlet that his air defense units usually fire two S-300 or Buk missiles at every Russian projectile to raise the chances of interception. This poses certain challenges, however, since it is impossible for Ukraine to procure additional missiles for these systems, which are produced in Russia. Meanwhile, finding the available stocks elsewhere has proven difficult, the report says.

Ignat went on to state that while Kiev is receiving modern air defense systems from its Western backers, Ukraine would need “hundreds” of such weapons to replace its aging arsenal.

“We have no other choice but to switch to these types of weapons since the Soviet weapons of the [19]70s and [19]80s are both… obsolete and the enemy is exhausting them every day,” he said.

Posted by: Outraged | Dec 14 2022 10:35 utc | 5

RF could send enough unarmed drones to Kiev to deplete the Patriot arsenal in days.
Why doesn't Ukraine switch sides , round up all Nato special forces in their country and re-nationalise their stolen land?
Assad is still alive. There is a future for former USUKIS pimps if they join the Russian side.

Posted by: Giyane | Dec 14 2022 10:36 utc | 6

Slavyangrad told us about this also for those who don't realise one can now sign up to telegram without a sim card I shall paste it (apologies b just this once only):

"I read the news that the United States plans to deliver the Patriot air defense system to its troops in Ukraine in a week.

The emergence of this system will not fundamentally affect the course of hostilities, because it is just a dull analogue of the C300, which has shown itself no longer on the battlefield, but in the catalogs of "super-expensive" weapons for "voluntary-compulsory sponsors of the US military-industrial complex" such as Japan, Canada, Australia, South Korea, the Persian Gulf monarchies and others.

But nevertheless, one conclusion can still be drawn from this news, obviously, the S300 and Buk air defense systems of the NATO troops in Ukraine have already ended, the Russian Aerospace Forces have destroyed almost everything.

There is no alternative for the NATO countries, they have only the Patriot air defense system physically left for serious military operations, there is simply nothing else on the world arms market, with the exception of the Chinese and Iranian analogues of the C300, which are inaccessible to the "evil empire".

The above quote shows that the delivery of one patriot battery is an actual 'nothingburger' a favourite cliche of amerikan corporate media when editorialising on Matt Taibbi's revelations about the backdoor and pipeline running outta twitter to a plethora of federal agencies who respond with orders on things to do with particular people who post particular things.

Anyway as was established nearly 20 years ago when amerika foisted patriots on occupied palestine as a means of resisting rocket attacks from Iraq as it was invaded, the primary purpose of the patriot system isn't about anti air defense, it is to increase returns for the MIC. The system has always lagged behind the systems that both China & Russia developed. It would simply cost too much and eat into profit to make any amerikan AA system truly state of the art - plus of course "what's to stop them from using it against US?" as amerikans decided when making it the latest tax on poodles.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Dec 14 2022 10:43 utc | 7

President Zelensky certainly sounds very desperate now but I suspect that even if NATO were able to supply what he asks for in a timely manner (as in, several months ago), it will not be enough to save his career as a politician and maybe not enough to save his skin. If he is wise, he should be planning his escape to Israel or some other country willing to take him as a permanent exile. The longer he stays in Kiev or Lvov or anywhere in Ukraine, the more likely his life is in danger - from neo-Nazis and other extremists angry at Ukrainian defeat, from soldiers angry at his leadership and conduct of the war, and from the SBU. A prison in a remote part of Siberia is looking like the only safe place on the planet for Zelensky.

Posted by: Jen | Dec 14 2022 10:43 utc | 8

Zanon with his doom shit.
Ukreich army is gone for good.
Soon all the foreign Mercs are gone and the mobilized flesh is cold.
All ukreich Technik is gone for good.
Now the alliance is recicling all the Bushmaster, Crabs, caesa, hmvve etc.

Last step would be Nato crewed Leo's and F16.

At the end more of ukraich and nato will be destroyed and more Russians die, but the outcome is set in stone.

Posted by: Kartoschka | Dec 14 2022 10:45 utc | 9

@ rk | Dec 14 2022 10:25 utc | 3
@ Zanon;:_ | Dec 14 2022 10:29 utc | 4 (3-4min spread ...)

You two should get a room or share a 'boiler-room' 'cubicle' perhaps, if you ain't actually doing so right this very moment. What repetitive utter dross. Quite tedious you know ... must do better, puhlease ?

@ Giyane | Dec 14 2022 10:36 utc | 7

Indeed, Assad is still smiling. (IMG)(JPG)

Posted by: Outraged | Dec 14 2022 10:50 utc | 10

Saw on TG yesterday (the post might have been a day old itself, can remember the channel) the claim that a second wave of Gerans came in silent. A new or recently exploited ability to turn off the combustion engine and glide in?

Posted by: anon2020 | Dec 14 2022 10:51 utc | 11

About that other "wonderwaffle"; the HIMARS.

They only seem to be used aginst stationary and very visible targets. Houses, buildings of all sorts, bridges, cities, etc. Is this because of the slowness of the operational chain starting with > the satellite observation, > through the US command (choice of target made in a luxury bunker in the US) > and then to the HIMARS unit? Moving or moveable targets would be difficult to hit, so there are few/no reports of this happening.

Easier to hit a civilian in Donetsk no doubt.

As the cost of "Patriots" being used on wide scale will need lots more money, Zelensky has been seen sitting on Santa's knee asking for $50 billion more (Courtesy of the Babylon Bee.)

The problem as I see it, is that they would need rather a lot of missiles to hit a hypersonic santa, let alone a Russian hypersonic missile.

Khadyrov has just said that the whole front (Bahkmut area) is on the move, ie. collapsing. Perhaps the 90 US technicians needed to work a single Patriot unit, could be transferred to the front. Only saying.
....or just their boots on the ground.....

Posted by: Stonebird | Dec 14 2022 11:01 utc | 12

It is surprising to me that cheap electronic countermeasures based on software defined radio (hackrf is 11 years old now haven't found their way to the front lines, the same way as cheap drones have.

Profits in wartime are made more expensive by cheap countermeasures.

Posted by: too scents | Dec 14 2022 11:10 utc | 13

Zelensky is fecked, if he does not do what he is told the west will walk off and his country will actually starve.
The Ukrainians will always be desperate for more it's tough keeping up to the Russians.
There is no way in hell they are actually reporting the true number of systems being sent or the right amount of ammunition being sent.
Neither side will run out of weapons any time soon

Posted by: OohCanada | Dec 14 2022 11:11 utc | 14

@ anon2020 | Dec 14 2022 10:51 utc | 12


If they approached at altitude, rather than NOE, say at 5-10,000ft+, impossible to visually sight & already essentially cannot be engaged by traditional AD SAMs or even AA from fighters ... if they cut the engine as part of preset target plot, they could glide silent, undetected, to target from say 5-10Kms+ out ...

Anyone know, able to estimate their likely glide ratio, so as to estimate their likely possible glide time re start altitude ? Hence reverse 'Slant range' un-powered. Should be pretty reasonable as lightweight, aerodynamic ... broad delta wing ... 'Plot' could continuously tweak 'angle-of-attack' to obtain best gliding lift-to-drag ratio for max distance 'stealth' re body form(insignificant radar cross-section) & sound (silent, no visual emissions(jet exhaust/flare)... even possibly restart engine reasonably prior to strike to gain speed, accelerate, improve control & accuracy, and disrupt any AD targeting calculations prior to that moment. And don't cost ~3.5M a piece. Oops.

Posted by: Outraged | Dec 14 2022 11:16 utc | 15

his country will actually starve.
Posted by: OohCanada | Dec 14 2022 11:11 utc | 15


No worries. The most important thing about a famine is assigning the blame.

Posted by: too scents | Dec 14 2022 11:26 utc | 16

PAC-2 has a range of 99 miles - so a 198 miles wide "bubble". And I doubt that the US will send the most modern gear.
It should be for a reason that they didn´t provide 404 earlier.
Patriot was fielded from 1984 on - that´s nearly forty year now. And as we could see in Saudi Arabia even the basic drones of the Houthis were no match for it.
Once they deploy Patriot to 404 Raytheon will start crying for Russia will expose the uselessness of that system.

And one or two batteries of Patriots won´t change a thing anyways.

Posted by: Goingo | Dec 14 2022 11:32 utc | 17

Are these the same Patriots that had problems with Saddam's Scuds ?

Are they being withdrawn from Saudi Arabia ?

What exactly does US hope to achieve ?

Have insurance rates in Wiesbaden spiked due to proximity to US bases ?

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | Dec 14 2022 11:37 utc | 18

Posted by: young | Dec 14 2022 10:12 utc | 2 "Russia will take out the USA in the first hour of the nuclear conflict"

What will happen to Russia during this first hour?

Posted by: Bill Smith | Dec 14 2022 11:41 utc | 19

Patriots deployed to Saudi Arabia demonstrated a abysmal performance against drones.

Posted by: JR | Dec 14 2022 11:45 utc | 20

Outraged | Dec 14 2022 11:16 utc | 16

12 drones and they went in low. They will possibly use your suggestion for the next lot. It is not clear how many were shot down.

During new attacks on Ukraine, kamikaze drones were covered by the Dnieper.

After Kyiv was attacked today by a multitude of strike drones, it became known that unmanned aerial vehicles were able to avoid detection by flying along the Dnieper, which is below the level of Ukrainian air defense capabilities, including those supplied by the West.

Подробнее на:

Posted by: Stonebird | Dec 14 2022 11:51 utc | 21

Posted by: Outraged | Dec 14 2022 10:35 utc | 6 "Yes, indeed at ~$3.5M per missile fired, with a demonstrated combat success rate so far of ~0% ... "

Well, then no need to get worked up?

I suspect the Patriot's, when delivered, would not be used against the Iranian type drones, but against Russian aviation and cruise missiles. Thus, in theory freeing up all the lower ranked systems available to move down a notch in what they are primarily targeting.

The point about SENTINEL seems like a throwaway line. The Russians do have a SAR satellite. So why would they rely on SENTINEL? Is the one (I think) SAR satellite pretty old?

Posted by: Bill Smith | Dec 14 2022 11:58 utc | 22

Brian Berletic has a yt on the same topic.
He covers the shortage of patriots available to Saudi, and his the Houthis have already exposed the limitations of patriots….
>… US to Send Patriot Missiles to Ukraine, CNN Says...
CNN is claiming Washington may finalize plans to send the Patriot air defense missile system to Ukraine. However, what CNN doesn't say is just as important:

- The US says it will send the missiles in days after the decision is made;
- It takes MONTHS to train crews to operate the Patriot missile system;
- NATO personnel will likely operate the missile system posing as Ukrainians;
- The Patriot missile system is suffering a global missile shortage;
- Lockheed will double missile production but it will take years to do so;
- Both current and future production numbers CANNOT match the number of cruise missiles alone Russia is producing per month;
- Russia is also using Iskander missiles, Geran-2 drones, as well as a number of inert decoys which will place even more pressure on Ukrainian air defenses;
- The performance of Patriot missile systems in Saudi Arabia has been poor;
- Patriot missiles will face more sophisticated and more numerous threats in Ukraine than in Saudi Arabia;

Posted by: Melaleuca | Dec 14 2022 11:59 utc | 23

Posted by: Outraged | Dec 14 2022 11:16 utc | 16

It’s an interesting claim and consistent with RF tactical innovation. Might it be possible to estimate glide ratio for an idealised delta of Geran dimensions and takeoff weight?

There’s talk of US sending MIM-23 HAWKs as a response to Geran.

While it is difficult to get estimates of current stocks, we know that at the systems height in the 1980s there were over 27,000 HAWK missiles in the U.S. inventory. The vast majority of these were the basic version. Some may have been transferred to allies, some may have been used in training or otherwise disposed of, but likely there are large numbers of them in a dusty warehouse somewhere.

There was a TG post listing the known shortcomings of the HAWKs. Better than nothing, if there are sufficient launchers, not just missiles, but probably easy for Geran to work around =)

Posted by: anon2020 | Dec 14 2022 12:01 utc | 24

A question on the imbalance of artillery. How much does an Excalibur type round equal in conventional rounds?

If the Russians fire 900 conventional rounds at 90 targets and Ukraine fires back 25 Excalibur type at 25 separate targets and 75 conventional rounds split among 7 targets, is the imbalance still 9 to 1?

Looking for opinions.

Posted by: Bill Smith | Dec 14 2022 12:03 utc | 25

Can someone explain to me why the Russians aren't eliminating these weapons as they come into the country, and the roads, rails, ships, bridges, and tunnels that they come in on? Are they unable to do that for reasons that I am not aware of?

Posted by: Gigo | Dec 14 2022 12:04 utc | 26

@ Goingo | Dec 14 2022 11:32 utc | 18

@ Paul Greenwood | Dec 14 2022 11:37 utc | 20

(1)Are these the same Patriots that had problems with Saddam's Scuds ?

(2)Are they being withdrawn from Saudi Arabia ?

(3)What exactly does US hope to achieve ?

1. Can confirm for a fact we did not intercept even one of Iraq's 50's era 2nd gen Modded Scuds. The few intercepts claimed as kills were tumbling discarded booster/bodies.

2. Past tense, have.

Highly probable these have been redeployed from SA & OPEC+ members in ME. All US AD supplied systems were withdrawn late Oct after KSA responded on behalf OPEC+ to Prez Bidens personal request, WTTE,"Reverse 1M barrel/day production cut ? So sorry, no. From first Nov it is NOW 2M barrel/day production cut. Click!". As all Patriots are already/deployed/allocated, and will take ~6 months to manufacture a new complete battery, OPEC+s go to Ukaine.

3. Sweet FA ?

@ Stonebird | Dec 14 2022 11:51 utc | 23

Ah, thank you kindly, and the link. TG is very flaky lately.

Posted by: Outraged | Dec 14 2022 12:13 utc | 27

Posted by: Melaleuca | Dec 14 2022 11:59 utc | 25

Yes, I posted that video in the last thread. Brian also made the point that the Patriots are not "shoot-and-scoot" systems. It takes time to move them - time they won't have in the Ukraine battlespace. Turn on that radar and boom - gone, as b correctly says.

As for Abrahms, the US operates about 4,800 of these, so I suppose they could spare maybe 500 to Ukraine. They'll have to be driven and operated and maintained by US "contractors", however, as will the Patriots, as Berletic pointed out. So sooner or later US soldiers will be returning to the US in body bags, assuming they weren't fried by a TOS-1 or vaporized by a Kinzhal. This is the real issue - there is no doubt that the neocons want a direct war between the US-NATO and Russia. It doesn't matter that NATO doesn't have the capability - either the neocons don't understand that or they don't care as long as some Russians get killed. It's also a boon to the US MIC as they will get the contracts to rebuild Europe after it's been trashed by Russia - assuming the US even bothers to rebuild Europe.

Trotskyites do hang on.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Dec 14 2022 12:16 utc | 28

I have now come to believe Russia WANTS the newest systems NATO possesses to be deployed in Ukraine.
Why not?
When your enemy is continually, consistently, without fail delivering troops and gear to areas under your complete military control, let them.
Everything NATO has sent so far, EVERYTHING, has all been captured, destroyed or sold and delivered by smugglers to areas outside Ukraine.
I think Russia is satisfied with NATO's current policy of de-militarizing itself.

Posted by: Mar man | Dec 14 2022 12:18 utc | 29

Posted by: Bill Smith | Dec 14 2022 12:03 utc | 27
Looking for opinions.

Pure assumptions from you...

We don't know how many Excalibur's round the Ukies are using. We don't know how many Krasnopol's the Russians are using. Without knowing the facts a further discussion about that is futile.

Posted by: SwissGuy | Dec 14 2022 12:19 utc | 30

Leopards can't be far off. Abrams too.

Posted by: Wokechoke | Dec 14 2022 12:21 utc | 31

Another point: As Ukraine is running out of AD missiles for their S-300 and BUK systems, and the Patriots won't last long, those Abrams tanks won't last long either as they will then be sitting ducks for Russian aviation, as will everything else in Ukraine. The Russian heavy bombers will be able to drop serious ordnance on any concentration of Ukraine forces, and the attack helicopters will pick off tanks all day long.

Posted by: Richard Steven Hack | Dec 14 2022 12:21 utc | 32

Posted by: Gigo | Dec 14 2022 12:04 utc | 28
"Can someone explain to me why the Russians aren't eliminating these weapons as they come into the country, and the roads, rails, ships, bridges, and tunnels that they come in on? Are they unable to do that for reasons that I am not aware of?"

They leave many supply lines open in order to lure the Ukrainians into attacking, sending more and more soldiers to their death. Ukraine is sending thousands of soldiers into the Donbass, where Russia grinds them down. Even in Bakhmut, where the Ukrainians are defending, the Russians have allowed an open line so that Ukraine can resupply them with soldiers and equipment.

The big mistake the US made in Iraq was that they rushed to occupy the entire territory, and then ended up with an insurgency. It's better to take less territory, but defend it, forcing the other side to throw wave after wave trying to take the land back.

Combined with the attacks on the electrical grid and infrastructure, at a certain point, Ukraine will collapse. Even if it limps along, it will still be effectively demilitarized, and no longer a serious threat to Russia.

Posted by: Augustus Caesar | Dec 14 2022 12:25 utc | 33

Well, this may all be true. But for months the same news every day. Russia kills 50 Ukies, destroys 20 tanks. Yet, nothing happens. The Russians magically do not regain the battle initiative. The Ukies are still shelling Donetsk. The Russians never seem to advance to or capture anything bigger that Buttfartov.

Same getting nowhere at all news. Every single day.

Posted by: John Thurloe | Dec 14 2022 12:30 utc | 34

[email protected] been on a firing range Bill? Planes dropping bombs? Neat thing to check out, hopefully you never have to do it in person. The people you need to ask about the arty ratio are the guys sitting under it. Guaranteed Bill, 900 trumps 90. 900 micro concussions per person, time thousands per day equals quite a few Ukrainians pooping in Depends for the remainder of their lies should they be lucky enough to stumble off the pitch.

Actually, someone should run Game Chair General tours of the front, just for effect.

Cheers M

Posted by: sean the leprechaun | Dec 14 2022 12:31 utc | 35

@ anon2020 | Dec 14 2022 12:01 utc | 26

MIM-23 HAWKs are 50's era shit, had been mothballed/derelict for over 22 years, were sent to the Borderlands more than two months ago. Zero capability re ANY strike drones as used by RF. They have trouble obtaining a multi launch intercept against 2nd gen fast movers the size of a bus from the '60's. Radars would not be able to properly detect, let alone track & target, and light up like a 40K candle lighthouse. Obsolete, derelict, '50's analogue tech, scrap. In fact the 40+ year since manufacture (last production '78-'82) Hawk missiles would present an extreme UXO hazard merely being handled, transported, loaded, fired, to actual crews/support pers.

@ Richard Steven Hack | Dec 14 2022 12:21 utc | 34

Since there is zero change re Battlespace, ie forces comparative capabilities. Every 73 ton Abrams not abandoned, will go the same way as the previous 8500+ MBTs/IFVs/APCs since Feb2422 ... Big-Bada-Boom!
With no more effort or allocation of assets/resources than RF has used so far over the prior ten months.

Should make for a few neat war trophies though. :)

@ Bill Smith - All


Posted by: Outraged | Dec 14 2022 12:34 utc | 36

@ Mar man | Dec 14 2022 12:18 utc | 31
@ Gigo | Dec 14 2022 12:04 utc | 28

It is not a question that deliveries of 'wuderwaffen' can be intercepted and prevented, but for RF military they have more value when those are deployed and put into the action. That way RF can study, learn, and adapt to countermeasure those.
This nullifies the effectiveness of such weapons in the future.

Russian AD vs. HIMARS interceptions required updated software that could only be done if there are patterns and characteristics known and can be properly implemented. Without knowing those and having prevented initial HIMARS deliveries, RF would never know.
The other issue is that mostly all those wonder weapons are used against primarily civilian targets, which motivates RF to neuter them even more and better.
Let us not forget that RF's EW can bring those down as well, however prolonged and emergency based EW also affects RF own forces and weapons.

Posted by: whirlX | Dec 14 2022 12:35 utc | 37

Posted by: Gigo | Dec 14 2022 12:04 utc | 28 "eliminating these weapons as they come into the country"

Russia doesn't have the persistent reconnaissance capability and on-call strike to do that. It is a very hard job.

There have been short video’s of helicopters transported across the border on flatbed trailers.

As an example, 30 minutes before the helicopter is transported across the border it is 20 miles from the border in a large warehouse. There are likely hundreds of them in that area along hundreds of miles of border. 30 minutes after crossing the border it is up to 20 miles inside Ukraine having been moved to a prepared hide site. At the hide site, it will remain only for an hour or two until it is moved again. Perhaps, even by flying it out after reattaching the rotors that were removed.

Say that the Russians have someone at the border that sees the shipment and calls ‘home’. The Russians are lucky and the sky is clear and one of the handful of spy satellites is about to go overhead. If they are lucky they catch the location of the hide site. How many hours does it take the Russian cruise missile to arrive?
Chances are nothing outsized is transported across the border just before the pass of a Russian spy satellite.

I’ve seen videos of trains carrying equipment and those should be easier to target, but the ability to hit a moving train is hard. As to why the Russians haven't located every rail road bridge between 10 and 30 miles from the border inside Ukraine and dropped it, well that is also be a hard job. It took 4 strikes of multiple missiles apiece to drop enough of the Zatoka bridge down in the south to make it impassable.

Most of the other stuff likely crosses in tractor trailers that look like all the other tractor trailers carrying nonmilitary goods.

Posted by: Bill Smith | Dec 14 2022 12:38 utc | 38

Leopards can't be far off. Abrams too.

Hope so. Abrams gas-turbine maintenance should crush Ukies.
Leos - has Germany ever produced a low-maintenance vehicle ?

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | Dec 14 2022 12:40 utc | 39

Some amusing and bewildering interpretations from Western 'news' outlets on why Putin's annual media marathon was, according to them, cancelled:

In classic Western reporting by omission, the official announcement actually indicates a postponement, not a cancellation:

"Russian President Vladimir Putin's annual news conference will not take place until the New Year, but it is expected that the head of state will find an opportunity to talk to the media, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Monday."

It does not take a great deal of imagination to assume that between now and sometime in the new year, a number of significant events may be taking place, the subject of which would be best discussed after the fact, and not as a matter of speculation before.

Is this a sign that the long awaited escalation/invasion with the 300k extra mobiks is imminent?

Posted by: Et Tu | Dec 14 2022 12:41 utc | 40

Posted by: SwissGuy | Dec 14 2022 12:19 utc | 32

Your opinion is noted.

Of course they are assumptions.

We do know that Ukraine has gotten thousands of Excalibur's, spread across several shipments. They have also gotten roughly similar shells from other countries. There are videos of them being fired.

Posted by: Bill Smith | Dec 14 2022 12:45 utc | 41

The newest gimmick to be deployed is the Patriot air defense system

Ah, that's nice. I hope Russia can quickly capture the entire battery intact, then ship it to Siberia and invite all their best arms customers for a big fireworks party and bonfire night to show of how many targets the Patriot is able to miss. Would be a great selling point ot just for future Russian arms sales, but also for potential sign-ups to the multipolar world - after all, they will need to be reassured about their defence capabilities first.

Posted by: BM | Dec 14 2022 12:46 utc | 42

Interesting that there are never economic considerations when talking about the end/development of this war, guess nobody cares what happens to Russia once the war is over. Anyway , the Darwin idiot award goes to the people suggesting Russia take as little territory as possible, given that the natural resources in Ukraine are estimated to be worth trillions. All that will go to corrupt oligarchs and their western "partners". Given that Ukraine is a walking dead country ; unpayable debt, very low birth rate + refugees/migrants, crumbling/destroyed infrastructure etc... would make sense for Russia + Belarus to take all the " good parts" and leave the rest as the west/banderists problem.

Posted by: Phariah | Dec 14 2022 12:48 utc | 43

Seems half the posters did not bother with reading the top post.

US is chronically in chest-thumping mode. We have known for thirty years the Patriot system does nothing. No amount of evidence ever cancels the advertising. We just love hucksters and give them our faith and our billions. Patriot is 1984. Have we had a President since then who was not a huckster? Half a dozen senators or congressmen who at times would even partially separate from the gravy train?

Posted by: oldhippie | Dec 14 2022 12:51 utc | 44

Mar man @ 31

I have now come to believe Russia WANTS the newest systems NATO possesses to be deployed in Ukraine.

China is as much under threat as Russia though the western attack hasn't been activated yet. I think a good part of the doubling down on Russia is the belief that its defeat will bring on a Chinese "reality check" and political capitulation on Taiwan and even across the board on going back to the 1972-1999 "shut up, stay in your place, you work for us" paradigm.

I think both Russia and China know there is no turning back and both have an existential need to fully evaluate USA/NATO technology, tactics, and capability, not the old cold war era stuff used till now but the new stuff. It's not impossible there is a rather ballsy accord between RF and China to let things stretch out and see what the west has really got.

If NATO steps in in Ukraine China may just step in sending its advanced weapons systems to Russia, in other words China has Russia's back equipment-wise should it come to that. If so NATO is stepping in shit big time, Chinese capacity is limitless.

Posted by: LightYearsFromHome | Dec 14 2022 12:52 utc | 45

Posted by: sean the leprechaun | Dec 14 2022 12:31 utc | 37

Your opinion appears to be it doesn't change much, if anything.

Yes, I have been on an artillery range. But behind the pointy end.

Posted by: Bill Smith | Dec 14 2022 12:53 utc | 46

to 28...

if "they" destroy these routes (roads, tunnels, railroads)

1.- Destroy the "known" access points that are easily tracked (satint, elint, humint) which allow them to follow the material send, and know where it is stored, routed, etc... better to destroy a warehouse full of supplies, weapons and ammo (rinse and repeat) than a couple of trucks now and then.
Also new entry routes and points need time to be recognized, found and processed.

2.- If the material, supplies, ammo, doesn't cross to Ukraine, it is not a legal target. Aalso would be accumulated somehow in the NATO side, and might be useful for them later. Better to allow crossing to the dark side, and when nicely collected ... BUM! ... they can also be Destroyed at the Front, or en route to the Front. "They" have more than enough resources to do it.

Posted by: Ilusionist | Dec 14 2022 13:00 utc | 47

Artemovsk and Soledar absorb the strategic reserves of the Armed Forces of Ukraine

Yesterday's message that Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Zaluzhny recommended to Zelensky to leave Artemovsk (Bakhmut) did not come as a surprise to anyone. So far, this battle is unfolding according to the scenario of the summer battle for the Lysichansk-Severodonetsk agglomeration and the losses that the troops of the Kyiv regime bear in it are beyond even according to the estimates of the Ukrainian volunteers of those same summer battles. And every day, up to Zelensky's "warriors" battalion goes into oblivion.

Only in recent days, due to heavy losses, three brigades of the Armed Forces of Ukraine were withdrawn from this front for resupply, which were replaced by fresh units that arrived from the Kherson and Zaporozhye directions.

However, there is still no feeling that the enemy is preparing to retreat. He is losing ground only due to the pressure of our forces. And in some places he even tries to carry out counterattacks that do not help him much.

And while everything here goes to the defeat of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, which, moreover, if the political leadership does not give the order to retreat, will lose their elite units in this battle, which the Americans and Europeans so carefully prepared for them, and who prepared not to defend cities, but to attack to Donbass and Melitopol. Now all these units are being quickly transferred near Artemovsk and Soledar and crushed by Russian artillery, which, even according to the Ukrainian military, began to work much better than in summer.

No one really thinks about the offensive in the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine for the coming months, although the regular Goebbels parrots of the regime talk a lot about it, for example, in the Svatovsky direction, the enemy is intensively preparing a defense line to a depth of 10 km and all his actions indicate that that at least here, he is preparing not to attack, but is trying to disrupt the Russian offensive, if it is launched as part of the winter campaign.

And as a result of these losses in the cities of Ukraine, a massive catching of new "meat" began to plug holes in the defense.

Posted by: Down South | Dec 14 2022 13:04 utc | 48

More advanced copium. HIMARS has indeed been a "game changer".

From this YT channel

It is an interview with a Russian infantryman, callsign "Goga", Northern Fleet Arctic Brigade, reconnaissance battalion.

"About the enemy. The enemy's territorial defense is frankly weak - riflemen, mortars. The mobilized Armed Forces of Ukraine are better prepared, but they are far from much better trained personnel of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, who are literally hung with top-end NATO weapons, equipment and medicine. "Wheel" - Turkish, Australian, American, Finnish and others. Caterpillar mostly Soviet.

"HIMARS" is a terrible thing, because I can't hear the exit, the devil knows where. As soon as the enemy identifies our command post - a platoon, company or brigade, then at least 4 missiles immediately fly there and there is no command post ... Arrivals are fast, there is half a second to fall into the trench.

In comparison with the beginning of the NWO, in the summer it was easier for the UAF, they were again north of Kharkov, 10-15 km from it. On September 6, the counteroffensive of the Armed Forces of Ukraine began, and after the occupation of Volchansk on the night of 9 to 10, they were ordered to withdraw. For another week we stayed in Russia and flew to Kherson ... where it was easy then. About 270 people. 10 shells a day there - nothing at all, they rested.

The first two weeks were easy, but then they were attacked over and over again by 5 different brigades of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the Berislav direction - a total of 15-16 thousand people with a tank brigade. Our forces were small, and the front was very wide."

Westerners like b and most posters here don't have a clue. Russians know the score and they know that their Armed Forces are massively underfunded for decades, what money was invested was wasted by cronies, and they have no positive expectations any more. At least the strategic nuclear forces are adequate.

At this point the likelihood of tactical nuclear weapons is growing more likely unless Putin sues for peace first.

Still waiting for the "Winter Offensive", any time now!

Posted by: moaobserver | Dec 14 2022 13:08 utc | 49

young | Dec 14 2022 10:12 utc | 2

...the conflict will escalate to nuclear war soon after. Most likely Russia will take out the USA in the first hour of the nuclear conflict.

This is imprecise: If so, the conflict will be escalated by the transatlantic warmongers to nuclear war. TASS OpEd on Dec. 07:
…the West tends to think that if Russia uses nuclear weapons at the tactical level, this will have little effect on Washington's Western European allies and practically no effect on the United States itself...

On Dec. 09, Putin remarked he is committed to using "all the means at his disposal." This was eagerly misinterpreted that he has threatened to use tactical nuclear weapons.
...That charge is a red herring – a highly mischievous one. The Kremlin strongly suspects some sort of false-flag nuclear explosion (perhaps a dirty bomb) might be used by West to "justify" responding with some kind of tactical nuclear weapon lying in bunkers in several European NATO member states. (Source Ray McGovern, Dec. 12).

What you write serves only one purpose: Lowering the hurdles to use tactical nuclear weapons; A wet dream of the US MIC. "…Don’t worry, dear Europeans. Side effects of tactical nukes are overrated. We have been discussing this for a long time already. After all, we must eliminate evil Russia. What good are these weapons for, anyway, if we can’t use them?...” - The utter nonsense of a fist strike by Russia, and pulverizing the US within the first hour (both things definitely not going to happen), leaves a backdoor to say after tactical nuke use: "…look, we survived…WE WON. Sorry, dear Europeans, we together underestimated the evil Russians. Nukes had to be used. Some of us have to deal with the consequences, unfortunately. We didn't think it's going to be this bad. Anyway, carry on, celebrate with us…”

(my emphasis in quotes)

Posted by: OttoE | Dec 14 2022 13:08 utc | 50

Ukraine still have access to a lot of webcams inside Donbass, complete with RF/DPR vehicles and tanks passing or stopping at shops. This has been going on for six months or more... Observation Room is run by 404 supporters

Posted by: YetAnotherAnon | Dec 14 2022 13:10 utc | 51

I would clarify that it is not the HIMARS itself that is the game changer, but rather the massive advantage in reconnaissance through satellites and the very quick and effective NATO / UAF command system.

The Russians are 30 years behind in comparison, and if it were not for civilians buying drones for the troops (!), RF forces would be restricted to Crimea right now.

Posted by: moaobserver | Dec 14 2022 13:10 utc | 52

I think US will send just enough to act as a "Get well soon" card.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Dec 14 2022 10:34 utc | 5

Nice one !!! :-)

Posted by: Tom_12 | Dec 14 2022 13:12 utc | 53

🇺🇦🚀🏎In Kiev, fragments of an American AIM-120 AMRAAM land-based air-to-air missile fired from the NASAMS air defense system fell on a parked car.

There is nothing unusual in the fact of falling fragments of anti-aircraft missiles (unlike incorrectly spent ones) - this is an unavoidable reality when working with air defense over any locality.

This situation is interesting by the very fact of the use of the Western NASAMS complex and its expensive AIM-120 missiles on penny Geran-2 drones, which they tried to avoid earlier.

In the situation of an increasing shortage of Soviet anti-aircraft missiles for Soviet air defense systems (Buki, S-300), which form the basis of the Ukrainian air defense system(, Ukraine will increasingly have to resort to the disproportionate consumption of expensive Western ammunition.

On the other hand, the same situation, in the near future, will force the West to force the supply of its modern ground-based air defense systems for the needs of Ukraine supplies of the MIM-104 Patriot air defense system(, otherwise Ukraine risks facing a serious air defense crisis amid a shortage of ammunition, which threatens the West and Ukraine will see a full-fledged return of Russian Aerospace Forces to the battlefield.

Posted by: Down South | Dec 14 2022 13:17 utc | 54

Anyone know, able to estimate their likely glide ratio, so as to estimate their likely possible glide time re start altitude ? Hence reverse 'Slant range' un-powered. Should be pretty reasonable as lightweight, aerodynamic
Posted by: Outraged | Dec 14 2022 11:16 utc | 16

For best glide angle they need to be heavy not light. High performance sporting gliders have big water tanks in the wings to improve the glide angle - they also fly considerably faster at that improved glide angle than without the water. If I remember correctly, double the weight (obviously needs to be matched to the aeronautical design - there is an optimal glide angle/speed for each design) gives double the glide distance plus considerable speed increase (double?? may be less).

Another feature to bear in mind: gliders can dive from a high altitude to convert height into kinetic energy. In other words, flying low and fast is perfectly compatible with gliding; speed can also be converted back into height, and/or slowly bled off for a zero glide angle.

Posted by: BM | Dec 14 2022 13:17 utc | 55

Explosive Ordnance Guide for Ukraine.

The content of this publication, its presentation and the designations employed do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining

The first edition of the GICHD Ukraine Ordnance Guide is intended to provide a basic
explosive ordnance recognition guide for qualified EOD operators in Ukraine conducting
mine action activities.

Nothing fancy.

Posted by: too scents | Dec 14 2022 13:18 utc | 56

"Boil-the-frog" operation is good. However, who is actually sitting there in the cooking pot, is the big question ...

Posted by: Humml | Dec 14 2022 13:19 utc | 57

this is all so depraved - inncocent people are being slaughtered and scarred for life

Posted by: abee | Dec 14 2022 13:22 utc | 58

If the Patriot fails to do its job because Russia found a way to neutralize it, the humiliation will be extreme for the USA. i think that is one of the reasons the usa have been hesitant about providing one to Ukraine.
The Himars have already lost a bit of their aura of invincibility.. let's see how effective the Patriot would be when faced with missiles sent by a regular army rather than fighters from Hamas in Gaza.

Posted by: Virgile | Dec 14 2022 13:22 utc | 59

I remain fascinated by Merkel talking about Minsk II at this stage of the game.

Failing to adhere to the terms of Minsk II is the nucleus of the entire situation and most people in the west, especially the US, don't have the slightest idea what it is. This is because it has been squelched by fake news.

Merkel talking about it now is fascinating because so far Merkel has been saying nothing.

Something has prompted her to stop saying nothing and now she says it was just a trick. Are powerful people in Europe starting to demand an explanation? She says it was a trick but she does not say who's idea it was. Was she pressured into ignoring Minsk? Threatened? Bribed? Blackmailed?

Who would do such a thing? Could the same people who pressured her on Minsk II have been the ones who destroyed the gas pipelines? I think we know the answer to this and saying it out loud could lead to the biggest geopolitical event in a very long time.

Posted by: chunga | Dec 14 2022 13:25 utc | 60

In circa 2005 the Imperialist States was trying to get the then Manmohan Singh regime in India (Singh, a nonentity who never won even a municipal election in his whole miserable life, was basically a rubber stamp for the Gandhi dynasty) to buy the Patriot. Paid shills in the Indian media – who in 2003 had been jumping up and down hooting like rabid hoolock gibbons in favour of India joining in the Iraq invasion – began extolling the virtues of the Patriot. One of these that I recall was in the tabloid The Times Of India and claimed

“It is true that in the 1990-91 Gulf War the Patriot couldn’t shoot down many Iraqi SCUD missiles*, but it has been tremendously improved since then. The proof is that in 2003 the Iraqis could not hit the US forces with a single SCUD missile.”

As I wrote an email to the editor in reply, if the Iraqis had any SCUDs in 2003, the Bushist invasion of Iraq would have been justified under the WMD sanctions, but the Iraqis had none (which Bush by then had admitted) and so the Imperialist States forces had been hit with none. Naturally, they did not publish my letter.

[*Actually they failed to shoot down any. ]

In the end India chose the Russian S 400. Attempts to sell India Abrams tanks and F 16s/F A 18s have also failed to this day.

Posted by: Biswapriya Purkayast | Dec 14 2022 13:28 utc | 61

Posted by: moaobserver | Dec 14 2022 13:08 utc | 51

Russians know … their Armed Forces are massively underfunded for decades… no positive expectations any more. At least the strategic nuclear forces are adequate… likelihood of tactical nuclear weapons is growing more likely unless Putin sues for peace first…

I don’t get the context of “adequate strategic nuclear forces” and the use of “tactical nuclear weapons”. Just another US MIC whore pushing the “Russia will (must, no other chance) use nuclear arms” story? Also see last paragraph OttoE | Dec 14 2022 13:08 utc | 52

Posted by: OttoE | Dec 14 2022 13:38 utc | 62

@ chunga | Dec 14 2022 13:25 utc | 62

(Casually waves hand ...) This is not the thread you are looking for ...

The thread you are after, is over here: 'Minsk II Was Agreed On To Arm Ukraine' - Did Merkel Really Say That?. Alternately here: Open (Not Ukraine) Thread 2022-223

Posted by: Outraged | Dec 14 2022 13:38 utc | 63

It is evident how well the combination of Patriot systems and AWACS aircraft worked in Saudi Arabia against Iranian drones and cruise missiles. Maybe this move it to rid of useless equipment by putting it on the lend-lease tab of Ukraine.

Posted by: Saag | Dec 14 2022 13:41 utc | 64

It will take many more miracles and Wonders...

Since 30 mn, live testimony on French television LCI of a volunteer doctor (Arsène Sabanieev) returning from Bakhmut.
This young man was a volunteer at a frontline medical post, in charge of 10km of frontline in Bakhmut.

Every day we receive 200 to 250 seriously wounded people, our mission is to keep them alive for half an hour in order to evacuate those who survive to a medical facility further away. Since spring, some brigades (1500 soldiers) have been reconstituted 4 times.

Here, the reality of the Ukrainian losses explodes in the middle of one of the most committed programs for the NATO intervention, giving off an absolute hatred of Russia.

The replay will probably be available in a few hours.

Posted by: La Bastille | Dec 14 2022 13:43 utc | 65

I am hoping the start of a Russian offensive will be marked by taking out satellites but probably won't happen

Posted by: ctiger | Dec 14 2022 13:44 utc | 66

@ Outraged - I read those too but I can't stop trying to figure out *why now". Perhaps I'm being an off-topic pollyanna with this but I do think telling the truth would indeed be a wonder weapon.

Posted by: chunga | Dec 14 2022 13:52 utc | 67

the reality of the Ukrainian losses
@La Bastille | Dec 14 2022 13:43 utc | 67


The reality is that Ukraine doesn't have its own doctors.

Posted by: too scents | Dec 14 2022 13:53 utc | 68

"From the statements of the Kremlin.
1. No holiday truces (New Year or Christmas) can be expected.
2. The Special Military Operation will continue. At the current stage, the main focus of the SMO is the DPR and LPR.
3. Before the end of the year, Putin will hold a meeting with the leadership of 4 new regions of Russia.
4. Accession to Russia of Odessa and Chernigov is possible if such is the will of their inhabitants."

Posted by: rk | Dec 14 2022 13:59 utc | 69

Top 5 Lies of the US propaganda machine:

1. Ukraine is winning
2. Putin is unpopular inside of Russia
3. Putin has (insert favorite terminal illness here)
4. Ukraine has an effective air defense
5. It's about "Freedumb"

Posted by: Chris | Dec 14 2022 14:24 utc | 70

Patriot vs Synthetic Aperture RADAR

It looks bad for the Patriot for at least two reasons ...
1. The RADAR components for the Patriot do NOT look very mobile to me.

2. Even worse, the Patriot has to keep its RADAR on all of the time, so when would they know that a Russian attack against them is underway. The question remains, does the noisy part of the RADAR have to be on to detect incoming missiles, or only when they target them?

Some pictures of the Patriot RADAR system


The S400 looks like it was designed to be mobile vs the Patriot which looks like its mobility was designed to deliver it to a final location before being setup

Posted by: Christian Chuba | Dec 14 2022 14:32 utc | 71

Well Russia hasn't taken out any nasam batteries, so its unlikely the patriots will be hit either.

However the patriot battle record is far from clear. "Scud busters" anyone? After the war it became clear that both them and the scuds were mostly useless.

Still though believe it or not I have some sympathy for the Russian position and would enjoy seeing Biden mumble around lame excuses so have at 'em boys!

Posted by: Neofeudalfuture | Dec 14 2022 14:33 utc | 72

Waiting for the Patriot Missiles delivery....?

14 Dec, 2022 13:05
US missiles in Ukraine will be targeted if delivered – Kremlin

The US media has claimed that a Pentagon plan to arm Kiev with Patriot systems is being finalized.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Wednesday that Russia would certainly target US MIM-104 Patriot missile systems in Ukraine if the weapons are deployed in the ongoing conflict. Media reports in the US have indicated that plans to deliver the air defense system are in the final stages.

Peskov’s remarks came in response to a question about how Russia would react to the possible delivery of the US-made systems, which Kiev currently does not have. Former Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, who is now deputy chair of the National Security Council, stated in late November that such weapons and their crews would be legitimate targets if a NATO member were to deliver them.[.]

When asked whether the Kremlin supported Medvedev’s stance, Peskov confirmed that was the case but advised against rushing to conclusions.

“In our times media reports are not reliable. Let us wait for official information,” he explained.[.]


Ask the Saudis about the Houthis using a sling ...very effective.

Posted by: Likklemore | Dec 14 2022 14:39 utc | 73

The Patriot may be used against Russian bombers in Belarus if they are in range.

In order to do air defense right, the Patriot should have a NASAM and C-RAM stationed with it.

The Patriots aren't really designed for low flying cruise missiles and drones. Better for aircraft and ballistic missiles depending on what missile they carry. Really the Ukrainians would do much better with more NASAMs which use the very good AIM-120 missiles. However NATO has run out of NASAMs and doesn't like using up its AIM-120s.

The Patriots used against the SCUDs used missiles designed for use against fighters and bombers. The fact they hit some of the SCUDs shows that the radar and software is actually pretty good.

When NATO turns on the radar, the Russians will know where the Patriot is within minutes. One Dagger, or a handful of supersonic cruise missiles will take it out.

This is just a PR stunt riding on the good name of the Patriot in NATO. This is the wrong mission for it. It actually might do pretty good against Iskander ballistic missiles, but it is not meant for use against cruise missiles. It could work during the initial launch of a cruise missile while it is at high altitude, but once the missile gets low, it will lose it, only reaquiring a few seconds before impact. It might get a few, but the kill ratio drops off as cruise missile speed increases, and is zero for a hypersonic. Also, the Saudi's have sucked up a lot of its missiles, so good luck keeping it supplied.

Posted by: JackG | Dec 14 2022 14:44 utc | 74

@ chunga | Dec 14 2022 13:25 utc | 62
Merkel talking about [Minsk 2] now is fascinating because so far Merkel has been saying nothing.
. . .She previously took a page out Lavrov's book.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Dec 14 2022 14:45 utc | 75

"... Patriot battery costs about $1 billion. The radar is the thing that makes these so expensive. Each of its missile costs about $3 million. The suicide drones are maybe $10,000 each. Now do the math ..."

Now after doing the math remember that cost directly correlates with production time. Roughly speaking, you can get 300 Iranian designed drones for the cost of one Patriot missile, and you can make them in the same time it takes to make that one missile. I say "roughly" because in reality the Iranian design is almost certainly tuned to more efficient serial production out of necessity. Do recall that the entire purpose of US military procurement is laundering tax dollars to politically connected businessmen, which is an end better served by less efficient production processes. Because of this the production rates will be even more favorable for Russia in practice.

To the NATO/Empire fanbois posting in this thread for SOCOM pocket change, if you think this sounds far-fetched recall that Iran produces more domestic student STEM grads than the US does. That is more industrial engineers, mechanical engineers, process engineers, electronic engineers, and so on. Furthermore, they don't feel obligated to lard the design teams up with useless "diversity hires" (committees and design teams are only as productive and competent as their slowest members). You NAFO "troopers" (Now All Fairies Online? North American Fatties Organization?) are just gig workers with degrees in journalism or gender studies, so you don't even know what engineers are, but trust me that they are really important for getting things made.

Posted by: William Gruff | Dec 14 2022 14:46 utc | 76

Russia hasn't taken out any nasam batteries, so its unlikely the patriots will be hit either.
Posted by: Neofeudalfuture | Dec 14 2022 14:33 utc | 74

How do you know? Anyway they hit buildings, like Iris-T. As long as they work against nazis they should not be destroyed. Today one nasams missile hit cars in Kiev, was probably trying to find the diy flying carpets

Posted by: rk | Dec 14 2022 14:48 utc | 77

Posted by: Likklemore | Dec 14 2022 14:39 utc | 75

I'll leave this here. To repurpose a famous quote, didn't Mr. Bush II say something about firing a $2 million missile at a $10 empty tent?

With some of the best-equipped armed forces in the region, Saudi Arabia has been employing Patriot systems to intercept ballistic missiles and, in some cases, drones. Drones have also been downed repeatedly by air-to-air missiles launched from F-15s and other fighter jets. Each of those scenarios pits sophisticated defensive weapons costing up to $1 million apiece against targets which, at the lowest end, may cost only a few thousand dollars to produce.

So, while the Saudi defenses may achieve a success rate of almost 90 percent against these targets, according to U.S. officials, the result is not only costly in financial terms but also takes a heavy toll on missile stocks.

Posted by: Ursula Zandt | Dec 14 2022 14:50 utc | 78

Scott Ritters' latest video makes the claim that the US must have been behind the drone attack on the Russian nuclear air base. He even speculates that there were Ukrainian assets on the ground inside Russia to perform "terminal targeting."

If that is true (it could be more propaganda) Russia needs to respond ASAP. I would suggest taking out a US airbase somewhere in the ME, maybe Al-Tanf in Syria.

Posted by: Chris | Dec 14 2022 14:52 utc | 79

@ chunga | Dec 14 2022 13:25 utc | 62
Merkel talking about [Minsk 2] now is fascinating because so far Merkel has been saying nothing.
. . .She previously took a page out Lavrov's book.

Posted by: Don Bacon | Dec 14 2022 14:45 utc | 77

I read an ed on RT today which suggests she is attempting to explain/apologize for negotiating with Putin back then, which is now a crime.

I can't say I like it, but it fits. And it fits her better than being a clever operator settling scores.

Through the looking glass indeed.

Posted by: Bemildred | Dec 14 2022 14:52 utc | 80

This is a tremendous opportunity.

Let the conflict prolong.

Keep these wunderwaffen coming, until we're st Abrams, F-35s and aircraft carriers.

Let Russian military observe their performance, figure out how to defeat them as with the javelins, stingers, howitzer and the Himars.

Finally share all that data to everybody in the world, particularly China and Iran.
None shall be invaded by the US again.

Posted by: FieryButMostPeaceful | Dec 14 2022 14:54 utc | 81

It actually might do pretty good against Iskander ballistic missiles
is zero for a hypersonic
JackG | Dec 14 2022 14:44 utc | 76

You do know Iskander has maneuverable hypersonic versions, right? But nato has no dedicated defense against older or newer versions of them anyway. It can be nuclear too, as bonus. And is cheap for what it does, they surely have many thousands of them waiting in storage.

Posted by: rk | Dec 14 2022 15:03 utc | 82

@Bemildred | Dec 14 2022 14:52 utc | 81

"I read an ed on RT today which suggests she is attempting to explain/apologize for negotiating with Putin back then, which is now a crime."

That is one way to look at it. Another way is she could be inching towards explaing why she did nothing to implement Minsk II. From my view it looks like this plan to oust Putin, crush Russia with sanctions, win on the battlefield, etc. is a flop.

I'm just spit-balling but what if powerful people are angry about the damage caused by this whole thing and are tapping her on the shoulder? Merkel could follow up her previous statements by saying she was under intense pressure from Washington. It was in the news for a while her phone(s) were tapped. Once that gets into the dialog that genie may be very difficult to get back in the bottle. Kicking troublemaking Americans out would solve a lot of their problems. I personally think that would solve a lot of problems for everyone.

Posted by: chunga | Dec 14 2022 15:13 utc | 83

Sorry b but the HIM/HERs are a big problem. I have seen several Russian sources complaining about how damaging they are. Kherson probably would not have been lost if not for them. And russian AD can shoot some of them down but definitely not all or else we wouldn't have seen those bombings on the hotel and bridge in Melitopol. With the NATO panopticon combined with long-range missiles it must be difficult for Russia to organize any kind of mass offensive. Remember the river crossing near the Severodoneskt/Liman front that was destroyed with about 70 vehicles.

Posted by: Catdog | Dec 14 2022 15:18 utc | 84

Granted that the western corporate press is completely dishonest, and the entire narrative about Russia being on the verge of collapse might (or might not?) be a fantasy, from what little I can tell, the Russians are not ten feet tall.

HIMARS rockets really have been a game changer. The main thing is the astonishing level of western targeting analysis: Ukraine is under a microscope, and nearly every static Russian ammo depot, troop concentration etc. is identified. The Ukrainians just drive the trucks in range, dial in the coordinates given to them by the western powers, push the button, and skoot. So the Russians can shoot down a HIMARS rocket or two? These are launched in salvos of 6 per truck, four trucks gives you a salvo of 24, and embedded in salvos of dumb cheap unguided rockets. Yes this is hurting Russia very big time.

The Patriot missiles are not I think going to be as much of a game changer, but could still be painful for Russia. At 3 million dollars a missile - and doctrine has them being launched in salvos of two - not even the west can afford to use them against $20K Iranian drones. But: they could make life impossible for Russian combat aircraft operating just outside the front lines.

The main thing is if Russia can ramp up the acquisition/manufacturing of these cheap drones fast enough. If they can get their hands on ten thousand or so, they will exhaust even the western stocks of anti-air missiles and then finally get air superiority over Ukraine. We will see.

It also needs to be pointed out that lack of air superiority is why Russia has not been able to interdict the Ukrainian supply lines from Poland. If Russia had dynamically targetable drones that could strike moving trains, or stealth drones that could survive loitering that deep inside Ukrainian territory and taking out trains and truck convoys, the war would be over in a month. But as long as Ukraine has a functioning supply line to the west, the war will never end no matter how many Ukrainians freeze.

Posted by: TG | Dec 14 2022 15:22 utc | 85

UK marine drones:

Posted by: ooaah | Dec 14 2022 15:30 utc | 86

Andrei Martyanov on the Patriots

As I am on record--Patriot PAC3 is not made for fighting real enemies, which have stand off weapons, not to speak about supersonic and hypersonic weapons. Nor, for that matter, this system is capable to handle a salvo of Iskanders, so, as usual, it is all about PR. Not to mention the fact of inability to build real integrated AD system (emphasis on "system"). There are reasons for PR--situation in Bakhmut is dire for VSU and its NATO handlers and desperate times call for desperate measures. Bakhmut is crucial not just for PR reasons , but because it is an extremely important transportation node for the whole Donetsk operational direction. This is Operational Art 101.

I explained huge technical issues for any iteration of Patriot AD systems six weeks ago here:

It Is Not Going To Make A Difference.

So, the only benefit here is for the Raytheon and Lockheed to obtain some REAL war data and maybe (maybe) incorporate some lessons learned, which is a whole other can of worms when speaking about learning curve of the US weapon systems designers and manufacturers, in order to improve on what already sustained serious reputational damage due to its constant failures to perform against even backward opponent. So, another day--another NATO wunderwaffe for former Ukraine. All reminiscent of using a band-aid on a blown up body.

About Patriots.

Posted by: Down South | Dec 14 2022 15:34 utc | 87

The easiest solution to the himars problem is probably to fight fire with fire. My understanding is that RU is a bit ahead of the west in missile tech. Are Smerch and Urugan similar systems to himars? Can Grads be made to carry guided missiles? Can Russia just launch more spy satelites?

I think the Himars would not be very useful without Nato spy sats. Taking out the sattelites might be an option, since it is only infrastructure, would kill no one and then the west would have to decide whether to go to war over some satelites. But Putin doesn't seem inclined to respond to western salami slices with any escalation of his own.

Posted by: Catdog | Dec 14 2022 15:36 utc | 88

From Larry Johnson

A further indicator that the United States has entered the desperation phase is the promise to send Patriot Missile batteries to Ukraine. The Patriot is useful for one thing — decommission it and stash it in a park or a town square as a past symbol of U.S. military prowess. The Patriot is completely useless as a defense system against cruise and hypersonic missiles. Just ask the Saudis. Their Patriot system could not stop attacks launched by the Houthis in Yemen.


Posted by: Down South | Dec 14 2022 15:37 utc | 89

"How many Patriot missile reloads does Empire have ? How many are manufactured per month ? Hm ?"

Posted by: Outraged | Dec 14 2022 10:35 utc | 6

Supply chain woes on high end built to purpose ASICs are the main manufacturing bottleneck in the industry. I spoke with a MIC executive last month and he said things which used to have 6 month lead times are now 24 months. Mechanical portions of missiles can be scaled quickly. Warheads too, but to a lesser extent.

Poland is getting a Patriot missile factory as an offset agreement to their Patriot purchase. It wont just be US capacity at some point.

Posted by: First Time Poster | Dec 14 2022 15:39 utc | 90

I'm just spit-balling but what if powerful people are angry about the damage caused by this whole thing and are tapping her on the shoulder? Merkel could follow up her previous statements by saying she was under intense pressure from Washington. It was in the news for a while her phone(s) were tapped. Once that gets into the dialog that genie may be very difficult to get back in the bottle. Kicking troublemaking Americans out would solve a lot of their problems. I personally think that would solve a lot of problems for everyone.

Posted by: chunga | Dec 14 2022 15:13 utc | 84

Well, they are going to have to talk sometime. And that statement would seen to have done a favor of sorts for the Russians: "yes, quite, we were lying all the time."

Can only agree with last two sentences.

Posted by: Bemildred | Dec 14 2022 15:44 utc | 91

The Empire of Lies claimed the Patriots took down 45 of 47 of Iraqi scuds. By jingo, 45 of 47!!!

Later the Israelis chimed in that the Patriots had perhaps hit 1 or 2 of the 47, and perhaps none.

So this is basically junk. Cant hit an ancient scud. Inventory clearance, 100% off!!

Posted by: Thim | Dec 14 2022 15:44 utc | 92

Some people are saying that Patriots are designed only to shoot at ballistic missiles and can't hit cruise missiles or low-flying drones at all. Is that true? Could the Patriots perhaps be useful against RU nuclear ballsitic missiles, if that's what they still use?

Posted by: Catdog | Dec 14 2022 15:49 utc | 93

@86 yes this is a point I've been trying to make as well. Russia and its supporters need to be hard headed about where they are. Mocking the west for transgenders and calling ukraine 404 is all fun, but its not helping. In fact its hurting.

Russia needs to know its only effective deterent is nukes and one must wonder do they even have that? What if their super super nuke weapons are all hot air too?

No, Russia needs to either engage in total war or surrender. Europe will get its pipeline gas from North Africa and they will frack it out under wartime emergency. Gas won't win it. Russia needs allies and accept it is not a super power. It is not the equal of the us, let alone the us and its mass of allies. Humility, dedication and resilience is what they need.

They need to hold the line, they can't do an offensive. They'll be picked apart one soldier at a time. They can't hide anything and they are riddled with traitors - the RF is far from all Russian theres many people in there that would rather not be. This is a fact.

Its like the nazis counter attacking while they were losing. They could've in 1943 stayed on the defensive everywhere and mightve held on till they had nukes. But Hitler acted like a traitor and sent his fan boys to their death.

Now it is Putin acting like a traitor sending his fan boys to their death. "General winter" is Ukrainian. They have the cold weather gear. The Russian stuff was used for photo shoots im doubtful they can equip more than a thousand soldiers properly.

Russia needs the ww1 equivalent of a tank a breakthrough device. Its tools are not enough and its own wunderwaffen is vapor. It seems drones are the way, but they seem too light.

Artillery is good but accuracy is hard and expensive as well.

Tanks are just targets they can't go anywhere, same for helicopters. Jets are too expensive and complicated. No ones winning anything with a hundred planes.

Frankly I don't have an answer. I would counsel waiting on the defensive until they see enemy success and then copy and expand on it quickly. Kinda like how Britain made Tanks but Germany used them to their greatest effect.

Posted by: Neofeudalfuture | Dec 14 2022 15:53 utc | 94

Anybody know which version of Patriot is being deployed e.g. PAC-2, PAC-3, PAC-3 MSE, etc. ?

Posted by: cameron232 | Dec 14 2022 15:54 utc | 95

"...a Patriot battery costs about $1 billion."

And every Ukrainian officer will ask:
"How much are the Russians willing to pay for a Patriot battery, good condition, careful owner?"

Posted by: Passerby | Dec 14 2022 15:57 utc | 96

Don't underestimate the Americans.

Yes it's fun to dump on the Patriot missile system and for good reason but think about the US strategic objectives of the Ukraine war and what the "patriot" missile system actually is.

The USA now has missile launch systems, under their control, most likely operated by their own crews, minutes flight time from Moscow. If they would have tried this last January it would have a shit storm with Russia and questions at home but today it's just another escalation of the Ukraine war.

On the surface the patriot system is an air defence system but it's a mobile missile launch system and who knows what missiles Raytheon has made to fit inside those launch boxes. Yes Russia can take out radars but Ukraine is a big country and those mobile missile launchers can easily get lost.

Since February they've had Russian speaking special forces infiltrate Russia. They have satellites overhead and surveillance aircraft skirting Russia's borders and now who knows what missiles under NATO/USA control.

We take NATO / USA for fools but in reality they may have accomplished a strategic objective in getting first strike nuclear weapons into Ukraine.

Posted by: HB_Norica | Dec 14 2022 15:57 utc | 97

Another stupid blunder for the US taxpayer. Only this time it costs more:

HIAMARS missile costs 150,000 a piece.
So far, Russia has destroyed over 700 of those that were located in ammunition depos.
Russia has also shot down over 2,000 HIMARS since inception in mid July.

Now the bar is up 20x more expensive at 3M a piece.

Let's see how long it lasts :):):)

Posted by: J | Dec 14 2022 16:00 utc | 98

@ Down South | Dec 14 2022 13:04 utc | 50

Thank you for your timely updates.

I recall reading months ago something about Zelensky's insistence to mass troops at Artemovsk against Zaluzhny's advice.

Around then, a Russian official also said Russia would not give NATO the urban war it wanted. Presumably Russia learned the lesson of Stalingrad.

Posted by: ? | Dec 14 2022 16:04 utc | 99

Actually, US will divest itself of older, flat-bottomed Strykers before MBTs. They're in the escalation pipeline, so to speak.

Posted by: Winston | Dec 14 2022 16:04 utc | 100

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