Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
January 19, 2023

Ukraine - Pressing For Tanks

The German chancellor Olaf Schulz is under pressure from local coalition partners and external allies to allow the export of German Leopard 2 tanks to Ukraine.

Scholz so far rejects doing so because the U.S. is not willing to give its own tanks, M1 Abrams types, to Ukraine:

Germany won’t send or authorize the transfer of tanks to Ukraine until the U.S. agrees to give its own, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz told American lawmakers on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum on Wednesday.

The exchange in Davos, described by three people with knowledge of what was said, was respectful in tone but showed just how far apart Washington and Berlin are on a tank deal.
...
A spokesperson for Scholz didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment. But the chancellor hinted at some kind of arrangement with the U.S. during his Davos address.

“We are never doing something just by ourselves, but together with others, especially the United States, which are very important in this common task to defend Ukrainian independence and sovereignty,” he said.

The U.S. has send its secretary of defense Lloyd Austin to Berlin to pressure Scholz into changing his mind:

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin met his newly appointed German counterpart on Thursday for talks that have taken on more urgency since Berlin put conditions on tank deliveries to Ukraine.

In a call this week with President Biden, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz stressed that in order for Germany to unlock a package of Leopard 2 tanks for Ukraine, Washington should send tanks, too, according to a German and a U.S. official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the private conversation.

It’s a move Washington doesn’t want to make, citing the high fuel consumption and maintenance burden of the U.S. military’s M1 Abrams battle tanks. Austin is hoping to break the deadlock in Berlin and persuade Germany to send tanks, according to a senior U.S. defense official.

The excuse Washington gives for not delivering Abrams tanks is not really believable. Yes, the turbine driven Abrams is guzzling a bit more fuel than the Leopard's diesel engine. But a turbine also requires less maintenance than a diesel engine which has many more moving parts.

Aside from the engine the Abrams do not have any significant parts that the Leopards do not have. Training for the use and maintenance of either does not differ in time needed or intensity.

There is also the false impression, pushed by some weapon dealers (in German), that there are 'hundreds' of Leopards available. This is nonsense. Not every Leopard is like the other. The most standardized variant is Leopard 2A4 one. In the end Ukraine could receive may be 50 of those. The current German standard tank is the Leopard 2A7 which had three upgrades since the A4 version came out. Various countries have versions in between, often with their own upgraded gun control and communication systems. It would not make any sense from a training and maintenance point to give Ukraine a smorgasbord of various Leopard types. The logistics to support those would immediately become unfeasible.

There are also other issues. Soviet era tanks have a weight of about 40 metric tons. All he 'western' Abrams, Leopard, British Challenger and French Leclerc main battle tanks have a battle weight in the 60 metric ton class. I doubt that Ukraine rural roads and bridges were constructed with such tanks in mind. What use is a tank when you can not move it around without destroying your own supply routes?

There is also the important issue of training. This does not only include the technology of the tank but its tactical use in the field. The Turkish experience in Syria showed that bad tank tactics inevitably lead to bad outcomes, no matter how good the tanks are.


bigger

Back to the original issue.

Why is the U.S. rejecting to send Abrams of which it has hundreds readily deliverable in various depots and pre-positioning sites?

The German chancellor seems to think that the U.S. wants to sneak out of its commitment and responsibility for the coming defeat of Ukraine.

"The Germans were responsible for delivering tanks but they did not deliver quickly and not enough of them," could become a convenient excuse when the neo-conservative Ukraine project fails as it inevitably will. The U.S. could thereby leave Europe on the hook for a dismembered and bankrupt Ukraine. That may happen anyway but it should not be made any easier by letting Germany be pushed into leading the escalation spiral in the U.S. proxy war with Russia.

Scholz should have thought of that when he, at the start of the war, committed his country to the Ukraine project. The consequences were easy to predict:

All energy consumption in the U.S. and EU will now come at a premium price. This will push the EU and the U.S. into a recession. As Russia will increase the prices for exports of goods in which it has market power - gas, oil, wheat, potassium, titanium, aluminum, palladium, neon etc - the rise in inflation all around the world will become significant.

'Western' central banks are still at practical 0% interest rates and will be reluctant to increase those as that will cause a deeper recession. This makes it likely that inflation in the 'western' world will increase at a higher rate than Russia's.
...
The shunning of economic relations with Russia and China means that Germany and its newbie chancellor Olaf Scholz have fallen for the U.S. scheme of creating a new Cold War. Germany's economy will now become one of its victims.

On February 4 Russia and China declared a multipolar world in which they are two partnering poles that will counter the American one. Russia's move into the Ukraine is a demonstration of that.

It also shows that the U.S. is unwilling to give up its supremacist urges without a large fight. But while the U.S. over the last 20 years has spent its money to mess up the Middle East, Russia and China have used the time to prepare for the larger conflict. They have spent more brain time on the issue than the U.S. has.

The Europeans should have acknowledged that instead of helping the U.S. to keep up its self-image of a unipolar power.

It will take some time for the new economic realities to settle in. They will likely change the current view of Europe's real strategic interests.

Now Germany and Scholz are in the mess I predicted at the start of the war. This will not get better by 'taking responsibility' for tank deliveries and letting the U.S. off the hook. Scholz needs to be able to point to the U.S. as the power behind the war when the final results come in. So let's see how long his usual weak backbone will hold him straight.

The U.S is by the way working on further escalation steps in the war by planing new attacks on Crimea:

Now, the Biden administration is considering what would be one of its boldest moves yet, helping Ukraine to attack the peninsula that President Vladimir V. Putin views as an integral part of his quest to restore past Russian glory.

American officials are discussing with their Ukrainian counterparts the use of American-supplied weapons, from HIMARS rocket systems to Bradley fighting vehicles, to possibly target Mr. Putin’s hard-fought control over a land bridge that functions as a critical supply route connecting Crimea to Russia via the Russian-occupied cities of Melitopol and Mariupol.

However, President Biden is not yet ready to give Ukraine the long-range missile systems that Kyiv would need to attack Russian installations on the peninsula.
...
This week, top U.S. and Ukrainian commanders will hold a high-level planning meeting in Germany to game out the offensive planning, another senior U.S. official said. The drill, the official said, is meant to align Ukraine’s battle plans with the kinds of weapons and supplies NATO allies are contributing.

The U.S. is planning all major Ukrainian operations in the war. It checks what weapons are necessary to pursue those plans. It then orders its NATO clients to deliver the stuff or at least to pay some other country for doing it. When the operation  finally launches it will only be Ukrainian and Russia soldiers who will die in their efforts.

"What is not to like with this," asks the White House.

Well, I do not think that Russia is willing to be the proverbial slowly boiling frog in this escalation game. It will, at some point, have to strike back at the powers behind the war instead of just at their Ukrainian proxy. I am sure that the Kremlin has already studied the various options to do so.

Posted by b on January 19, 2023 at 16:01 UTC | Permalink

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tanks is demanded by the field marshal in kiev!

would they use otan tactics or does the comedian have some new innovation springing off hitker?

the logistics chain, and support vehicle load is far beyond the competence of kiev's comic government. or given the distances, and open routes even the vaunted us war profit machine.

as napoleon said "don't interfere, while the fascists are making a mistake"....

Posted by: paddy | Jan 19 2023 16:08 utc | 1

An indicative list of all weapons and equipment that NATO countries intend to transfer to Ukraine in the near future:

🇬🇧 14 Challenger 2 tanks;
🇬🇧 600 Brimstone missiles;
🇬🇧 30 155mm AS90 SAU;
🇬🇧 200 BMPS/BTRS;
🇨🇦 200 Senator armored vehicles;
🇨🇦 1 NASAMS air defense battery;
🇵🇱 14 Leopard 2 tanks (most likely modification of A4);
🇺🇸 100 Bradley BMPs;
🇺🇸 100 M113 tracked APCs;
🇺🇸 18 155mm SAU M109A6;
🇺🇸 250 M1117 armored vehicles;
🇺🇸 138 HMMWV off-road vehicles;
🇺🇸 100 Stryker wheeled APCs;
🇺🇸 GLSDB ammunition;
🇺🇸 36 105mm howitzers;
🇺🇸 1 Patriot air defense/protection battery;
🇺🇸 6 Nasams air defense batteries;
🇺🇸 18 RSZOS;
🇫🇷 40 AMX-10RC wheeled tanks;
🇫🇷 Bastion armored vehicles;
🇮🇹🇫🇷 1 SAMP/T air defense/protection battery;
🇩🇰🇫🇷 Several 155mm Caesar wheeled gunships;
🇩🇪 40 Marder BMPs;
🇩🇪 1 Patriot air defense/protection battery;
🇩🇪 3 Iris-T air defense batteries + 3 TRML-4D radars;
🇩🇪 2 RADARS TRML-4D;
🇩🇪🇳🇴🇩🇰 16 Zuzana-2 155mm wheeled guns;
🇳🇱🇺🇸🇨🇿 120 T-72M tanks;
🇳🇱 1 Patriot air defense/protection battery;
🇸🇪 50 CV-90 BMPS;
🇸🇪12 155-mm Archer wheeled gunships;
🇨🇿26-30 152mm Dana-M2 wheeled gunships;
🇪🇪10 155 mm FH70 howitzers;
🇪🇪10 122mm D30 howitzers.

The final "official" list will be known after Rammstein Format meeting tommorow
Much of this is production-ordered equipment (i.e., not out of stock).


https://t.me/azmilitary11/34138

Posted by: Down South | Jan 19 2023 16:10 utc | 2

High fuel consumption may be a reason for USA not sending Abraam tanks to Ukraine, but more relevant is the desire of the US administration to keep the war in Europe stricktly proxy. Let this dumb Europeans fight alone the bear.

Posted by: Antonio Ferrao | Jan 19 2023 16:12 utc | 3

Can someone explain to me why Russia hasn't destroyed all the entry points for heavy equipment into Ukraine? I was given the impression that they had air superiority, and we all know they have missiles that can reach anywhere in the world. So why haven't the bridges, roadways, railways, ports, and tunnels leading into the country by which this military equipment would enter been destroyed?

Posted by: Niranam | Jan 19 2023 16:15 utc | 4

Thanks, b.

AZ Geopolitics has published a tentative list of all the heavy arms planned for the next Ukraine delivery. This is leaving aside the question of the Leopard tanks. I do imagine Germany will cave and at least some will be sent.


As b points out, the US is now directly encouraging and planning attacks on Crimea, something they did not do at the start of the war for fear of Russian response.
I have also seen pictures on twitter of Pantsir air defenses being hoisted to the top of buildings in Moscow.

It seems NATO is planning for a big offensive push with the remaining 150,000 Ukrainian troops, probably to be combined with several deep strikes into Russia territory.

A common view stated at the beginning of this war, and a point made by Barack Obama back in 2015, was that Russia had escalation dominance in this part of the world.

From my perspective, it looks as though the US/NATO is actually enjoying escalation dominance, as they continue to cross every red line earlier stated by Russia, and so so with impunity and without any response from Russia.

They seem to have calculated that Russia will not directly attack NATO sponsoring countries, and will not hit US assets in the Mideast or other vulnerable areas for fear of US response.

I don't want to doom, but I am growing very skeptical that there will be any big Russian offensive this winter, and I am worrying that Russia is unable or unwilling to respond to increasingly brash US involvement. This will only lead to more loss of life, even further US escalation, and in the worst case a spiralling out of control of the situation.

Posted by: WJ | Jan 19 2023 16:16 utc | 5

The Bundestag has blocked the decision to transfer Leopard tanks to Ukraine

MEPs were unable to vote for the transfer of tanks to Ukraine. Several parties objected and it was decided to postpone the adoption of this decision


https://t.me/geromanat/4580

Posted by: Down South | Jan 19 2023 16:29 utc | 6

I wonder if those photos circulating today of Pantsir systems being hoisted onto rooftops of buildings in Moscow are a sign of things to come...

Posted by: MapleLeaf | Jan 19 2023 16:29 utc | 7

thanks b...

you know this all sounds quite scary... the neocon koolaid folks running nato are intent on pushing russia to the brink... only ukraine and russian military suffer the consequences.. at some point russia will indeed have to hit back to the source, which they have yet to do..

as for sholtz - the guy has a chance to be a leader here and the tell the usa to piss off.. i doubt he will take it.. russia on the other hand - i have every confidence in them hitting back if usa-uk-nato continue to up the ante...

Posted by: james | Jan 19 2023 16:31 utc | 8

Sputnik published this two hours ago:

Scholz Tells US Lawmakers No Tanks for Kiev Until Washington Sends Its Own - Reports

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - German Chancellor Olaf Scholz told US lawmakers on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos that Berlin is not going to send or authorize the transfer of tanks to Kiev until Washington commits to giving its own, media reported on Thursday, citing three people in the know.

The German chancellor was respectful in tone, but "pretty direct," one of the participants of the meeting said.

A German newspaper earlier reported that Scholz in a conversation with US President Joe Biden on Tuesday made it clear that his country would supply Ukraine with Leopard 2 tanks, but on the condition that Washington sends its Abrams tanks.

On Wednesday, US Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Colin Kahl said that the Abrams tank is a very complicated piece of equipment, which is "expensive, hard to train on" and has a jet engine, so it will be difficult for Ukraine to maintain it.

Addressing the WEF on the same day, Scholz highlighted that Germany was among the leading countries in terms of support for Ukraine and reaffirmed that his country would continue to provide assistance. At the same time, he rejected any unilateral steps on the issue, stressing that all decisions should be made in coordination with allies, especially the United States.

Posted by: Petri Krohn | Jan 19 2023 16:31 utc | 9

I don't want to doom, but I am growing very skeptical that there will be any big Russian offensive this winter, and I am worrying that Russia is unable or unwilling to respond to increasingly brash US involvement. This will only lead to more loss of life, even further US escalation, and in the worst case a spiralling out of control of the situation.

At this point, I don't believe there will be a winter offensive primarily due to the mild winter. If true, the Russians will wait until the summer to begin their offensive westward. The Russians are very patient in their war efforts.

In the meantime, should the situation not change drastically via the Russians not advancing a great degree, I don't see the U.S. position changing that much. From a macro perspective, time is on the Russians side. The longer the war continues the worse off the US becomes. The Biden administration is being attacked from within and is now dealing with a hostile House of Representatives with a looming debt limit fight. The Biden administration will be distracted by Congressional investigations. Meanwhile, the Biden administration faces the continued deterioration of the US Dollar as the world's reserve currency which won't improve while the war continues.

As an aside, first time poster here....long time lurker.

Posted by: Trimalchio | Jan 19 2023 16:39 utc | 10

looks like life assurances for the comedian and the oligarchs,

canadian senator and us m1117 are essentially riot control vehicles. wheeled striker is for urban warfare, not rolling the fields.

the list is insufficient in armored fighting vehicles to support the few real tanks being donated.

Posted by: paddy | Jan 19 2023 16:40 utc | 11

@ Trimalchio | Jan 19 2023 16:39 utc | 10

welcome to moa.. ditto your viewpoint...

Posted by: james | Jan 19 2023 16:40 utc | 12

Germany and US keep making excuses not to send tanks. Why don't they just admit they don't want to see them burn?

Posted by: dh | Jan 19 2023 16:46 utc | 13

Jan 19 2023 16:16 utc | 5

why interfere with the west denuding their expensive arsenals?

as to strikes in russian federation: see [lack of] outcome from the immense air war on hanoi.

otan strategy is to keep the comedian in power, by wasting a lot of shoddy but expensive equipment and mercs' lives.

and the overhead of supporting too many different pieces of hardware thousands of miles from effective supports!!!

russia is right to stay calm and let the eu and usa bankrupt themselves.

the us already is borrowing/stealing $$ from everywhere to buy useless f-35, virginia class subs, ford carriers etc...

Posted by: paddy | Jan 19 2023 16:47 utc | 14

Russia can continue grinding up the people and equipment the globalists send to them in eastern Ukraine, then just wait as the west implodes economically. What vexes me is why haven’t the Ukrainian people yet realized the extent to which they are being used?

Posted by: Fred | Jan 19 2023 16:48 utc | 15

Yet another comment of mine mysteriously disappeared when I added a link so one could understand what I was talking about.

This is such a common thing on this site these days that it becomes hard to bother to add links at all.

Posted by: Biswapriya Purkayast | Jan 19 2023 16:54 utc | 16

The US getting Germany to supply tanks has two other intentions: it would see Germany cross its own red lines about supplying serious offensive weapons to a belligerent, and it would also be another nail in the coffin of Russo-German relations. They can never be friends again.

Posted by: Jeremn | Jan 19 2023 16:54 utc | 17

My take is that empire does not want any of its colonies to have any weapons to defend itself against empire, should it chose to want to do so

Posted by: psychohistorian | Jan 19 2023 16:56 utc | 18

Abrams and the other NATOstani tanks are optimised for a war where their side has

1. Control of the airspace.
2. Intact transport facilities including usable bridges (note most Western armour isn't amphibious, unlike Russian).
3. Especially for the very fuel consuming Abrams turbine engine, access to fuel.
4. Especially, again, for Abrams, repair and maintenance facilities being easily accessible.

Not one of these will be there in Ukranazistan, even if the tanks could be deployed in the best possible situation tactically with the best crew (ie NATOstanis in Ukranazistani uniform).

And even NATO knows this.

Posted by: Biswapriya Purkayast | Jan 19 2023 17:00 utc | 19

@Niranam | Jan 19 2023 16:15 utc | 4

Can someone explain to me why Russia hasn't destroyed all the entry points for heavy equipment into Ukraine?
Demilitarization. Paraphrasing: Send your weapons our way and we will demilitarize it

Posted by: Norwegian | Jan 19 2023 17:00 utc | 20

Posted by: Trimalchio | Jan 19 2023 16:39 utc | 10

Welcome, Trimalchio. Might not be too long a wait for winter. Today, which is Old Calendar Theophany, we've finally got a freezing morning here in the southwest US - which usually hits first week in January, so it is late but past years can stretch into February. Nothing like midwest or more northerly stuff but we're passing it on.

I'm guessing Russia will be pausing again for the feast, which normally would be celebrated on iced over rivers, not so much that this year.

Posted by: juliania | Jan 19 2023 17:08 utc | 21

Ukraine says: tanks for the memories...

It's repetitively stated by NATO members this week that a new influx of heavy weaponry is necessary to allow Ukraine "the best possible" negotiating leverage. This is a round-about way of acknowledging the leverage, currently, is on a diminishing trend. Thus Stoltenburg says: “Weapons are the way to peace.”

Warmongering academic Timothy Garton Ash tries to rally with a widely disseminated op-ed which is not about "peace":

“Germany has a unique historical responsibility to help defend a free and sovereign Ukraine. Europe’s central power is also uniquely qualified to shape a larger European response, designed to end Vladimir Putin’s criminal war of terror…
Eighty years ago, Nazi Germany was itself fighting a war of terror on this very same Ukrainian soil: the same cities, towns and villages were its victims as are now Russia’s. No historical comparison is exact…
…historical responsibility comes from what German president Frank-Walter Steinmeier has honestly described as the “bitter failure” of German policy towards Russia following the annexation of Crimea and the start of Russian aggression in eastern Ukraine in 2014. That policy could accurately be characterized as appeasement.”

Even those inclined to agree would have to admit these are the arguments and analysis of an idiot.

Meantime, Al Jazeera publishes a best-case analysis of the military value of the requested tanks -
https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2023/1/18/dont-believe-the-hype-tanks-are-still-vital-for-ukraine -
which makes it clear that any optimism is based entirely on a highly unlikely and favourable sequence of events. Surely NATO realizes the predicament. The blame and finger-pointing begins.

Posted by: jayc | Jan 19 2023 17:10 utc | 22

@4.


Destroying bridges with missles usually takes multiple strikes and the big ones will have some sort of AD bubble around them.

Russia cannot fly planes over ukraine they've gotten quite a bit of AD given to them and losses would be too high to sustain. Ukraine still regularly lauches airstrikes of its own still. They take losses of course, but they don't care about Polish pilots, assuming trianed Ukrainian airmen are in ever shorter supply. Pilots can be worth more than the plane.

Russia let itself keep the Odessa port open because of the grain deal handcuffs - damn dumb move there - and they can't move surface ships, ukriane got anti ship missles as well.

But no one really knows why they haven't even tried. I'm thinking Putin is letting it through to help nato kill Russian soldiers because he's compromised in some way.

For comparison ukriane himared the bridges at kherson for weeks before they gave out.

Posted by: Neofeudalfuture | Jan 19 2023 17:10 utc | 23

well, you see, the US battle tanks (abrams) have this problem, it's called a turbine engine, not only is it thirsty, and maintenance heavy, but also produces so much heat that it lights up like a beacon on IR.

Just like all the other "advanced" weapons of the US, it is virtually useless.

Posted by: Oldcutlas | Jan 19 2023 17:11 utc | 24

It's hard to see how this doesn't end in nuclear war.

Posted by: NoOneYouKnow | Jan 19 2023 17:14 utc | 25


The only thing US and German Tanks could prove is that they like Aircraft Carriers are obsolete now.

Posted by: SwissArmyMan | Jan 19 2023 17:16 utc | 26

To be fair, T-80s also have turbine engines except for some variations like the Ukranian T-80UD.

The West is sending weapons just to send weapons. What is the aim? Except for prolonging the war, I can see no strategy behind it.

Posted by: Verdant | Jan 19 2023 17:17 utc | 27

I think there is a very simple and real reason US will not give tanks to Ukraine-the time for that already has past. It would take too long to train the crews (tank and maintenance) for them to make any difference.

Would take more than an year; Ukraine doesn’t have that kind of time. What happened in Iraq and Afganastzin to the Abrams’s when not fully trained troops tried to use them ( over a 100 were lost in Iraq alone - a big embarrassment) still I as in their mind. Coupled with the fact we can’t appear to be helping Ukraine (wink, wink) all that much seals the deal. If the US gives them tanks at this point they will just be running coffins because the stuff that made the Abrams competitive against other MBT will be removed, making them basically mobile artillery at that point; good for defense but not much for offense in movement warfare.

Posted by: drsmith | Jan 19 2023 17:18 utc | 28

Seems to me the 'winter offensive' is going quite well.

But if the Evil in charge of for-profit Empire plays hardball with Crimea - the 'west' will learn a lesson it won't forget.

And as others have pointed out, there are lots of weapons in the inventory short of nuclear holocaust to employ to bring the Great Satan to its knees. Chief among them is the truth.

Posted by: gottlieb | Jan 19 2023 17:21 utc | 29

Posted by: Down South | Jan 19 2023 16:10 utc | 2

An indicative list of all weapons and equipment that NATO countries intend to transfer to Ukraine in the near future:

There's roughly half a dozen to a dozen of each class of equipment here! How in heaven's name do they intend to train or even source a talent pool to man each type of equipment?

- 'Tanks' or tank like things

🇬🇧 14 Challenger 2 tanks;
🇵🇱 14 Leopard 2 tanks (most likely modification of A4);
🇳🇱🇺🇸🇨🇿 120 T-72M tanks;
🇫🇷 40 AMX-10RC wheeled tanks;

- Armored Vehicles/APC "thingies"

🇨🇦 200 Senator armored vehicles;
🇫🇷 Bastion armored vehicles;
🇺🇸 250 M1117 armored vehicles;
🇬🇧 200 BMPS/BTRS;
🇺🇸 138 HMMWV off-road vehicles;
🇺🇸 100 Stryker wheeled APCs;
🇺🇸 100 Bradley BMPs;
🇩🇪 40 Marder BMPs;
🇸🇪 50 CV-90 BMPS;
🇺🇸 100 M113 tracked APCs;

- "Guns on wheels things"

🇩🇪 3 Iris-T air defense batteries + 3 TRML-4D radars;
🇺🇸 36 105mm howitzers;
🇨🇿26-30 152mm Dana-M2 wheeled gunships;
🇪🇪10 155 mm FH70 howitzers;
🇪🇪10 122mm D30 howitzers.
🇩🇪🇳🇴🇩🇰 16 Zuzana-2 155mm wheeled guns;
🇸🇪12 155-mm Archer wheeled gunships;
🇩🇰🇫🇷 Several 155mm Caesar wheeled gunships;
🇺🇸 18 155mm SAU M109A6;

- Air defense-like things:

🇬🇧 30 155mm AS90 SAU;
🇨🇦 1 NASAMS air defense battery;
🇺🇸 1 Patriot air defense/protection battery;
🇺🇸 6 Nasams air defense batteries;
🇮🇹🇫🇷 1 SAMP/T air defense/protection battery;
🇩🇪 1 Patriot air defense/protection battery;
🇳🇱 1 Patriot air defense/protection battery;
🇬🇧 600 Brimstone missiles;
🇺🇸 18 RSZOS;
🇩🇪 2 RADARS TRML-4D;

So let me get his straight:

- They'll source candidates and train teams for 9 different kinds of howitzer.
- When, inevitably, a shortfall of operators develops in one type, they'll either sit idle or retrain other howitzer operators and move them around to operate new howitzers.
- They'll maintain 9 different logistics and support networks for each type of howitzer.
- They'll integrate 9 different types of howitzer into their tactical procedures and operational considerations.

This isn't a circus, it's a freak show!

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 17:24 utc | 30

There's one obvious reason why the US won't commit Abrams there but wants to push Germany to deliver their own German-made tanks: it's better, sales-wise, to have the German arms industry take a hit when said tanks will be destroyed by Russian army than have US ones.

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Jan 19 2023 17:25 utc | 31

I believe, with Ukraine's military collapsing, the US will continue to attack Russia proper in hope of provoking open war with NATO or some NATO members. The Biden administration isn't running this war, nor is Congress; it's being run by the US shadow government and deep state. Everybody in the White House could disappear tomorrow and the war would continue. Meanwhile, Russia and its allies move ahead or have at their disposal strategies that would do great damage to the US economy and petrodollar, so for the US neocons, the war has become existential. If it fails to maintain military hegemony to back its economic hegemony, the US empire is screwed. As I said, it's hard to see how this war doesn't end in nuclear war.

Posted by: NoOneYouKnow | Jan 19 2023 17:25 utc | 32

"... What vexes me is why haven’t the Ukrainian people yet realized the extent to which they are being used?"

Posted by: Fred | Jan 19 2023 16:48 utc | 15

Unvex yourself, Fred! Of course they realize it! Put yourself in their situation. People are being shot there for realizing it, or even just for not being able to pretend they don't, or hide from the gangs out commandeering them for slaughter at the front. Shame on western governments for aiding the slaughter! They know what is happening; their tanks and equipment are all to keep it ongoing -- for what reason? It can't be for anything but Greed. It is all for Greed!

Shame on them.

Posted by: juliania | Jan 19 2023 17:26 utc | 33

Down South @ 6

The same metric might be in the Pentagrams thinking with a new Congress and several members gaining power who want a real accounting of what was sent to The Ukraine.

Posted by: circumspect | Jan 19 2023 17:28 utc | 34

Posted by: Niranam | Jan 19 2023 16:15 utc | 4

Because the actual first stop staging ground are ports in the Netherlands and German, and final staging areas are in Poland for the most.

Despite all those countries materially assisting Ukraine at the moment, Russia is doing its darnednest to keep the actual battlefield (where stuff gets blown up ) to the greater Ukraine area. They are wanting to go the true next step yet - they would likely need another year to get there ( but the signs are there - recently to steps to increase the actual standing army to 1.5 million, a big increase. Don’t forget that have a huge reserve force, as well).

Posted by: drsmith | Jan 19 2023 17:29 utc | 35

On the question of transferring tanks to Ukraine and then to Russia, here is a simplified procedure:

‼️🇷🇺👉🇬🇧 General Surovikin turned to British Defense Minister Ben Wallace with a request to transfer two Challenger tanks to Russia at once.

“Two (undamaged) tanks, at least, will be with us (for reengineering) anyway,” - Surovikin explained his unusual request, - “but what’s the point of taking them first to Poland, then to Ukraine, then to the front, and then to us. The result is the same, but the logistics are different." 😂😂😂

https://t.me/ZandVchannel/47903

Posted by: Norwegian | Jan 19 2023 17:31 utc | 36

Commentators here don't seem to understand, Ukrainian victory is not necessary and perhaps even desirable for its handlers. The current state of affairs where Ukraine and Russia keep on bleeding is the end goal. Most of these weapons are good enough to kill Russian soldiers but not useful for the war with China and not useful for MIC stocks. The US will likely eventually provide everything (albeit after depleting all European armies) that's not the latest technology to Ukraine.

And that leads me to reiterate what I said before. There is a threshold past which even the cleverest military planning and cost effectiveness of the Russian MIC can be depleted with the rampant use of high tech missiles, tanks, airplanes, artillery munitions - they will have to use to destroy this junk.

I have wondered and keep on wondering when Russia will decide that it can no longer keep playing this losing game and that more decisive action against NATO is required (perhaps Poland?).

Posted by: Boo | Jan 19 2023 17:32 utc | 37

Meanwhile, out at Black Agenda Report -- a remarkable island of clear-thinking risen from US American intellectual swamps -- Ajamu Baraka names the names of so-called leftists unsheathing their own grotesque hypocrisy as leaders of something called the "Ukraine Solidarity Network": Howie Hawkins, Eric Draitser, and Bill Fletcher, Jr.: "we reject the arguments these forces advance about fighting dual imperialisms as anti-dialectical nonsense and a political cover".

The position of support for more war guided by the white-boy fantasy of military victory in Ukraine is madness. For Africans/Black folks, we ask, what self-respecting African would consciously place themselves on the same side with NATO, Europe, and the U.S. settler-state in any conflict? The fact that some continue to end up on the same side with our enemies only affirms that they have made a choice, and that choice is to collaborate with our enemies – which sadly, also makes them the enemy.

https://www.blackagendareport.com/ukrainian-solidarity-network-highest-stage-white-western-social-imperialism

Posted by: Aleph_Null | Jan 19 2023 17:33 utc | 38

This Global Times article reviews recent developments and focuses on the major NATO meeting occurring today and tomorrow, while also reviewing the main points made by Lavrov yesterday regarding Ukraine. Unfortunately, the writer conflates NATO with the "international community" which it clearly isn't, which is a rare mistake that made it past the editor. But the article's title does reflect its tenor, "Russia-Ukraine conflict eyes more intensity as US-led NATO meeting focuses on supplying weapons rather than mediation."

Regarding future mediation, here's what Lavrov said yesterday:

"Speaking at an annual news conference on Wednesday, Lavrov dismissed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky's demands for a complete Russian withdrawal from Ukraine. The minister also dismissed Ukraine's insistence on payments for war damages and the prosecution of war criminals as a platform for future talks, saying 'there can be no talks with Zelensky.'

"Lavrov alleged 'the West makes all the decisions for Ukraine' with the goal of using the conflict to exhaust Russia. NATO members have provided Ukraine with substantial military aid. He said Russia was ready to 'seriously consider' any Western initiatives on ending the conflict but added, 'We haven't seen any serious proposals yet.'"

As with Russia's security proposals made in December 2021 which were directed at the Outlaw US Empire since it holds the reins over its NATO vassals, the only entity capable of ending the Ukraine conflict aside from Russia is the Outlaw Empire; and as we can plainly see, it has no intent of doing so at this stage.

As for the contribution of somewhat modern NATO tanks to Ukraine, we've discussed that to death and they will merely enlarge the scrap pile.

As for the highly publicized NATO attack toward Crimea, IMO as with the beginning of the SMO Russia will preempt any possibility with its own offensive aimed at expanding the area protecting Crimea by securing the remaining Black Sea coastline to Odessa and beyond. IMO, the current very determined offensive surge along the entire FEBA is aimed at getting Ukraine to commit as many of its remaining reserves now on garrison duty at cities like Odessa to weaken their resistance to the later offensive.

Note that the discussion to send tanks mentions nothing about crews or support teams and logistics; it's as if the tanks magically run by themselves as tanks certainly will in the future, but that future isn't now.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 19 2023 17:34 utc | 39

An air conditioned Bradley built for the desert is not going to be very comfortable in snow, ice, and negative 16 degrees.C..

Dripping with condensation and rather chilly inside.

Posted by: CitizenSmith | Jan 19 2023 17:35 utc | 40

TASS today, quoting German's new Defense Minister:

"Germany is not a participant of the conflict, but despite that, we are affected by it," Pistorius said.

A tankless remark, a thankless remark, or a thoughtless remark, or a plain old lie?

Posted by: Elmagnostic | Jan 19 2023 17:36 utc | 41

@Biswapriya Purkayast | Jan 19 2023 17:00 utc | 19

Well, if those reasons are accurate, then the US is making the correct decision not to send Abrams tanks, is it not?...

Posted by: Inkan1969 | Jan 19 2023 17:39 utc | 42

Boo @37--

What you fail to see is there's nothing new to follow the old coming from the Outlaw US Empire's MIC. The new contracts are for the same old crappy weapon systems. And nothing in the Empire's inventory will be of use against China provided victory is the goal. And the same can be said for NATO as a whole.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 19 2023 17:43 utc | 43

Verdant @ 27

You hit the nail on the head. One other consideration is sending weapons allows politicians to feel good and look good while not taking risk.

Posted by: oldhippie | Jan 19 2023 17:44 utc | 44

Posted by: Niranam | Jan 19 2023 16:15 utc | 4

Isn't it easier for ukie equipment to get driven to X marks to front line without collateral, than for Russia to chase them all over the place, hunt them (bomb) while they are hidden in cities, shopping centers or parked by the school buildings?

It is in Russia's best interest to all the bridges, rails and roads toward front are functioning 100% so ukies come out to play.


Posted by: MapleLeaf | Jan 19 2023 16:29 utc | 7

I believe those AA defenses on Moscow buildings are more as a protection from drone terrorist attacks close by than from threats from abroad. Moscow itself is arguably best protected city (place) in the world against all kinds of ballistic and missile threats. But it is easy to insert ukie terrorist squad with small drone in car trunk and drive it to ~50km from city limits. Something US enemies can start doing themselves if US opens that doors.

Posted by: Abe | Jan 19 2023 17:45 utc | 45

Elmagnostic @41--

Just another Big Lie. Germany's a NATO member; NATO is directly involved in assisting Ukraine; Germany has provided weapons to Ukraine and helps training its troops; therefore, Germany is directly involved in the War against Russia.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 19 2023 17:47 utc | 46

Posted by: Boo | Jan 19 2023 17:32 utc | 37

Commentators here don't seem to understand, Ukrainian victory is not necessary and perhaps even desirable for its handlers. The current state of affairs where Ukraine and Russia keep on bleeding is the end goal.

What you don't understand, dear Boo, is the principle of "Immunisation".

The longer the USA engages in war the more it's enemies learn it's ways (even if they learn it by proxy).

Iran, China, Russia and all future potential enemies of collapsing US 'world order' are getting a master class in how to undermine and resist neocon aggression.

The RoW are learning that it is possible to collectively contain US aggression by simply aligning with the opposite side,to their advantage.

America's allies are learning that it's more lethal to be allied with the US than against it.

The World is being being "Immunised":

From now on every American imperial enterprise around the globe will be significantly harder to initiate and execute. They will in fact all fail - even harder than these enterprises have failed to date!

So, while they're busily 'bleeding' Russia the entire US-led matrix of global control is collapsing about their ears.

Aside:

They've been 'bleeding' countries like NK, China, Iran Cuba for decades ... How'd that work out for Uncle Sam?

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 17:49 utc | 47

@karlof1

Well, the principal goal is to create a situation in which China has no alternative but to intervene in Taiwan, let it bleed, and then even attack its fleets if victory seems inevitable. The US still has an advantage in submarine warfare, and they are getting Japan, Australia and maybe South Korea to foot a part of the bill of the military expenditures which are required to inflict damage on China.

The US needs neither Bradleys, nor Patriot systems, nor Abrams tanks for that. China has become very powerful, but it is still not quite there yet with its sea and air assets.

Plus, ultimately, this would be a war that China cannot afford to lose but the US can - which is why they're eager to manufacture it.

Posted by: Boo | Jan 19 2023 17:49 utc | 48

Can someone explain to me why Russia hasn't destroyed all the entry points for heavy equipment into Ukraine?

Posted by: Niranam | Jan 19 2023 16:15 utc | 4

Its obvious isn't it? Russia does not have the capability or willpower, or both.

Posted by: Muthaucker | Jan 19 2023 17:51 utc | 49

Record mobilisation. Even officials are being driven to the front in Ukraine

Strana V's sources have reported the biggest mobilization in Ukraine since last March.

"They are demanding workers from businesses, gathering people in the streets and taking  even some officials," the channel's source said.

He said it was the largest mobilisation in Ukraine since March 2022.

A large part of the mobilized are employees of Ukrainian companies, engineers and construction workers. These personnel will be sent for training in order to man the crews of the supplied Western equipment.

The new wave of mobilisation is largely due to AFU losses in the Bakhmut direction.


https://t.me/Slavyangrad/29646

Posted by: Down South | Jan 19 2023 17:52 utc | 50

Posted by: CitizenSmith | Jan 19 2023 17:35 utc | 40

I am pretty sure the A/C on the BFV has an "on-off" switch.

Posted by: Muthaucker | Jan 19 2023 17:53 utc | 51

@Arch Bungle

I never said the plan was certain to work. The US is well aware that the post war system they enjoyed is living its last days, but they are trying to delay its collapse and influence outcomes on the hope that the main competitors can be exhausted, if not knocked out. It's not a 100 year strategy, but a 10 year one, which is in any case a persistent feature of American political thought.

Even if the writing is on the wall, the damage they can do on their way out is immense.

Posted by: Boo | Jan 19 2023 17:55 utc | 52

Can someone explain to me why Russia hasn't destroyed all the entry points for heavy equipment into Ukraine? I was given the impression that they had air superiority, and we all know they have missiles that can reach anywhere in the world. So why haven't the bridges, roadways, railways, ports, and tunnels leading into the country by which this military equipment would enter been destroyed?

Posted by: Niranam | Jan 19 2023 16:15 utc | 4

Exactly.
Seeing the endless list of weapons in this thread soon coming to Ukraine it is time to stop the ingress of military supplies post haste.

I've said elsewhere you could sneak the Tyrolean Alps into Ukraine. Where's all the hi-tech covering the square meters?

Posted by: Elmagnostic | Jan 19 2023 17:55 utc | 53

Re: Abrams, T-80 and turbine engines on tanks.

Both tanks were designed in `70, at the time when diesel engines of comparable power were too big. So that was main reason. Irony is that diesel engines cached up soon enough, so Leopards were designed with diesel engine few years later.

So, only main advantage is small size/high power ratio at the time.

Other parameters are downside:
- too fuel hungry
- too maintenance heavy and costly to repair compared to diesel
- turbine can't idle with acceptable fuel consumption, it uses too much fuel
- great thermal signature
- infantry can't follow tanks, as exhausts are too hot
- things can be set on fire in bush during summer by exhausts
- smaller size of engine itself is offset by larger fuel tanks, so advantage is moot point

Basically, even Russian top brass admitted after Chechen wars they don't want to procure tanks with turbine engine any more, as they were not happy with T-80 engine wise.

Practically speaking, there are no new models of tanks with turbine engines, nor there are numerous modifications of existing ones to replace diesel with turbine (other way around is found frequently).

So small turbines on armored vehicles as additional power units when engine is off have merit, but turbine as main drive is not viable on armored vehicles.

Posted by: Abe | Jan 19 2023 17:58 utc | 54

I have wondered and keep on wondering when Russia will decide that it can no longer keep playing this losing game and that more decisive action against NATO is required (perhaps Poland?).

Posted by: Boo | Jan 19 2023 17:32 utc | 37

Lol. Why? Why would Russia not want to commit suicide?

Posted by: Muthaucker | Jan 19 2023 17:58 utc | 55

Posted by: WJ | Jan 19 2023 16:16 utc | 5

NATO might try some destalibilizing attacks this year, however; the Pentagon doesn’t do big arrow attacks until they have overwhelming superiority. In Ukraine thats at least a Full Field Army plus at least 1,000 Aircraft. That’s why my guess is NATO will not be ready for major offensive until Mid-2024.

2023 will therefore, likely be the year of trying to destabilize Russia and the periphery countries.

Net, Net - this war ain’t gonna’ end for many years.

Posted by: Exile | Jan 19 2023 18:00 utc | 56

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 19 2023 17:43 utc | 43

Says the biggest purveyor of MoD BS on this board.

Hey genius, answer this "If Russia is winning why they need to declare martial law and mobilize 500K more soldiers?

Posted by: Muthaucker | Jan 19 2023 18:01 utc | 57

Funny how geoeconomic dependency and its importance is completely lost to some people. For example, the Outlaw US Empire's seeming desire to wage war on China when the Empire is highly dependent on China. Didn't the abject failure of Trump's Trade War with China teach anything?!

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 19 2023 18:05 utc | 58

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 17:49 utc | 47

Exactly. Just like world learned how color revolutions work, so last 5-6 of them failed miserably, the world now learns how to counter US militarily.

Posted by: Abe | Jan 19 2023 18:06 utc | 59

Posted by: Boo | Jan 19 2023 17:49 utc | 48

Well, the principal goal is to create a situation in which China has no alternative but to intervene in Taiwan, let it bleed, and then even attack its fleets

Do you really think Han Chinese in Taiwan will "bleed" Han Chinese in Beijing?

You think a Mr. Zhang in Taipei, grandson of Mr. Zhang in Beijing who celebrates Chinese new year on the mainland with his uncles and cousins from Shenzen is going to 'bleed' the PLA?

I'll tell you what's going to happen:

1. The day the mainland decides that it's time to return to the fold, the head of the PLA will make a short call to the head of the Taiwanese military and provide them a set of instructions.
2. The Taiwanese military will take control of the government, putting the country under martial law.
3. All American advisors and military personnel will be confined to their quarters.
4. All US warships in port will be ordered to leave.
5. Taiwanese air defense systems will be put on defensive alert - against attack from the US, not the PLA.
6. A Chinese delegation of top leadership will meet with the top (military selected) leadership of Taiwan , in Beijing to discuss a "One Country Two Systems" integration of Taiwan into the Chinese State, including economic, political and military integration.

And so Mr. Zhang Junior will celebrate subsequent Lunar New Years with his family on the mainland, much as he has for decades previously ....

And so it will go. Without a single bullet fired.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 18:07 utc | 60

They've been 'bleeding' countries like NK, China, Iran Cuba for decades ... How'd that work out for Uncle Sam?

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 17:49 utc | 47

Those totalitarian utopias you just listed have been bleeding their own populations for decades. That's why they had to have fences built around them...to keep people from escaping utopia. Someday old-school communist death-cult members like yourself are gonna look in the mirror and understand the problem.

Posted by: Muthaucker | Jan 19 2023 18:07 utc | 61

My personal opinion. Like so much war rhetoric by the US, the idea that the US is warming to the idea of Ukraine attacking Crimea is simply rhetoric from the New York Times written to see how Russia reacts. The US doesn't seem to have much idea of what Russia is planning or when and they are hoping that articles like this will provoke a reaction that will give them hints about what Russia is planning. They know that Crimea would be a red line that might provoke a reaction.

Posted by: Belle | Jan 19 2023 18:07 utc | 62

And so it will go. Without a single bullet fired.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 18:07 utc | 60

Lol, why don't they just do now?

Posted by: Muthaucker | Jan 19 2023 18:09 utc | 63

Posted by: Boo | Jan 19 2023 17:55 utc | 52

I never said the plan was certain to work.

Fair enough.

Even if the writing is on the wall, the damage they can do on their way out is immense.

That is the case regardless. My concern is more with the damage they've being doing while "in".

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 18:10 utc | 64

Lavrov's been busy. Today in Minsk for discussions about Union State foreign policy coordination, with a brief exchange with media after meeting Lukashenko:

Good afternoon

A meeting was held with President of the Republic of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko, during which they spoke about the work of the foreign ministries of our two countries to implement the foreign policy aspects of strengthening the Union State.

We have a practice of adopting two-year programs for coordinated foreign policy actions in the international arena. She's in her twenties. Now the program for 2022-2023 is being implemented, we are preparing another document for approval by the Supreme State Council for the next two years. As part of the implementation of these joint actions in the foreign policy arena, we hold annual meetings of the boards of the two foreign ministries. In turn, it will be held in Minsk today.

The agenda will focus on developing additional steps to implement a coordinated line regarding the actions taken against our countries, the Union State by organizations such as NATO and the EU. They are trying to pull other structures, including the Council of Europe and the OSCE, into these hostile actions. Let's talk about coordinating our steps in the UN structures.

Today we reported to President of the Republic of Belarus Alexander Lukashenko on how the foreign ministries are involved in supporting and implementing twenty-eight Union programmes. They are implemented by almost seventy percent. Everything is on schedule. At the same time, a new action plan is being prepared to strengthen the Union State and implement the Treaty on the Union State for a three-year period from 2024 to 2026.

We exchanged views on how the external situation around the events in Ukraine is developing as part of our special military operation. We have a common position on what goals need to be achieved and how to ensure that neither Russia nor Belarus receive any threats from our neighbours (be it Ukraine or someone else). Everything that needs to be done is being implemented on the direct instructions of the two presidents. Our leaders regularly talk about this when they communicate on the territory of Belarus and the Russian Federation.

In 2022, ten meetings were held between V.V. Putin and A.G. Lukashenko. This underlines the special nature of relations within the Framework of the Union State and the special role that our presidents play in promoting the legitimate interests of each of our countries and the Union State as a whole in the international arena.

Another presser was held later after his meeting with Belarus FM Sergey Aleinik.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 19 2023 18:10 utc | 65

Bonsoir,
Isn't the underlying problem the need to provide national servicemen with a Ukrainian uniform?

Posted by: Le Catalan | Jan 19 2023 18:12 utc | 66

Bonsoir,
Isn't the underlying problem the need to provide national servicemen with a Ukrainian uniform?

Posted by: Le Catalan | Jan 19 2023 18:12 utc | 66
---
Not to worry Hugo Boss has all the dipped sheep covered when it comes to uniforms. ;)

Posted by: knighthawk | Jan 19 2023 18:17 utc | 67

Crews wanted to drive Challenger tanks to Crimea. Short training period. Top wages paid.

Posted by: dh | Jan 19 2023 18:18 utc | 68

The Germans were very sensitive about the loss of Leopards in combat by Turkey when used on the Syrian border. A repeat on a bigger scale, far more visible, would be an important negative in their eyes. Yet that is the only likely outcome, because Ukraine is doomed.

Posted by: Mark Thomason | Jan 19 2023 18:19 utc | 69

Posted by: Muthaucker | Jan 19 2023 18:07 utc | 61

Those totalitarian utopias you just listed have been bleeding their own populations for decades.

You're confused, as usual.

It's Uncle Sam whose been bleeding their populations.

If these "totalitarian utopias" had really been bleeding their populations as you claim, their would look that wonderful American democracy export success story Iraq, or Indonesia under Suharto ... well, I could go on but you get the picture.

That's why they had to have fences built around them ... to keep people from escaping utopia.

You realise it's Uncle Sam who built those fences, right? Or are you under the delusion that Cuba and North Korea are embargoing themselves?
Remember that the division of Germany into two states in 1949 – setting the stage for 40 years of Cold War hostility – was an American decision, not a Soviet one.

Someday old-school communist death-cult members like yourself are gonna look in the mirror and understand the problem.

You on the other hand will never have the benefit of a mirror, lacking self-awareness, will remain a fool forever.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 18:22 utc | 70

The writing is on the wall.

Just days ago Russia canceled all treaties with the EU. ALL OF THEM. The news media barely mentioned this but this is huge.

Also Lavrov has been very active not to mention Putin as well promising his military industrial complex to go into overdrive. Even Orthodox leader Kyril has mentioned a possible war with all of Europe. As I said. The writing is on the wall.

Possibly Russia will declare to be under attack by all of Europe and activate FULL MOBILIZATION. They could have 1.5 million soldiers ready to go by mid summer. Their plan would most likely be to take over ALL of Ukraine and destroy anything that steps in their way.

There could possibly be multiple fronts open. Aside from Donbas. Belarus front in the north and a southern front through Odessa to Transnitria.

Posted by: Comandante | Jan 19 2023 18:23 utc | 71

Posted by: Muthaucker | Jan 19 2023 18:09 utc | 63

Lol. Why doesn't Uncle Sam just attack China now?

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 18:23 utc | 72

Why is the U.S. rejecting to send Abrams of which it has hundreds readily deliverable in various depots and pre-positioning sites?

Because as soon as the M1 ends up engaging peer level vehicles, it gets its ass handed to it, especially with undertrained crews. The illusion will be broken.

Besides, I have it on very good authority that Ukraine captured hundreds of Russian tanks that they already know how to use, and the Russians have been absolutely ineffective at taking out Ukrainian tanks. Why don't they just use those tanks?

Posted by: Phelps | Jan 19 2023 18:24 utc | 73

Posted by: Abe | Jan 19 2023 18:06 utc | 59

... the world now learns how to counter US militarily.

Moreover, I suspect they've learned to run their own color revolutions too, if what's happening in Peru is what I think it is.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 18:26 utc | 74

Posted by: Comandante | Jan 19 2023 18:23 utc | 71

Just days ago Russia canceled all treaties with the EU. ALL OF THEM. The news media barely mentioned this but this is huge.

Nothing of true significance in shaping the coming world order will ever be reported by Western Media.

Strict orders from Above.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 18:28 utc | 75

Nice article. All tanks burn, has always been thus. Their value is in their mobility and firepower, not invulnerability. And today they are VERY vulnerable, and need a combined arms effort to really function well.

The optics of blown up Abrahms's is a bit too much to take, IMO.

This was a great discussion on the same subject. https://youtu.be/Pan4rUhOsvs?t=1269

Posted by: muttman | Jan 19 2023 18:31 utc | 76

Russia should step on it. They have a time window of like 3 months max to wrap this war up, say, by the end of Q1. The longer this drags along, the more numerous and dangerous the stuff that enters Ukraine.

Posted by: Nico | Jan 19 2023 18:31 utc | 77

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 19 2023 18:05 utc | 58

Didn't the abject failure of Trump's Trade War with China teach anything?!

"Learning something" implies you were wrong, and America is never wrong ...

Double down.

No reverse gear.

It's the American way ...

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 18:31 utc | 78

Posted by: Down South | Jan 19 2023 16:10 utc | 2

An item is missing from your list:

1 large kitchen sink (gently used)

Posted by: ianMoone | Jan 19 2023 18:33 utc | 79

https://www.berliner-zeitung.de/wirtschaft-verantwortung/lagern-hier-gepard-panzer-fuer-die-ukraine-juergen-todenhoefer-kuendigt-proteste-an-li.230166

In Rockensussra in Thuringia is Europe's biggest tank scrapyard which is now owned by KMW. No doubt this is where the parts to produce tanks for Ukraine can be found if they can be re-assembled.

As for the rest. Maybe UK should donate the entire Challenger capacity of 227 working tanks and throw in the other 120 for spares ? Uk should get out of tank business - it has not made ammunition since 2006 anyway. It could disband the Tank Corps. Why an island needs tanks is not clear and it is highly unlikely Brtain will fight Germany in the near future..........

The whole game is for London-Warsaw-Kiev to involve Germany in a war with Russia. Scholz has finally understood that Us and UK intend to destroy Germany and France in the EU by making NATO top dog and Poland is helping to bring Germany to a subordinate place. Macron is floundering - totally outflanked.

Germany will lose its trade surpluses; its living standards will crash; it will be saddled with massive liabilities through Habeck pushing a Fiscal and Transfer Union at Davos. - it is hard to see EU being anything more than a Greater Italy in future

Posted by: Paul Greenwood | Jan 19 2023 18:33 utc | 80

At the joint presser, Lavrov gave a very long answer about what he sees as the fate of the OSCE in which he echoed the response provided by Belarus FM Sergey Aleinik. The overall gist of Lavrov's assessment can be surmised in the first three paragraphs of his very long and detailed answer:

I share the assessments made now by Sergei Aleinik. The OSCE is rapidly and clearly degrading, moving further away from the lofty principles laid down in the Helsinki Final Act and the documents of subsequent OSCE Summits. I would like to single out the documents on military-political security on the basis of the principles of equal and indivisible security. In 1999 in Istanbul and in 2010 in Astana, at the summits of the Organization, the leaders of all participating States signed a commitment that no country would strengthen its security at the expense of the security of others, and that no country and no organization in the OSCE area would claim to dominate the sphere of military-political security in this region.

Everyone who follows the development of events (this is reported daily by the media) understands that all these obligations were trampled upon by our Western colleagues, who bet on the expansion of NATO further east close to the borders of the Russian Federation and the Republic of Belarus. They promoted military infrastructure. Our repeated warnings that this was a breach of commitment remained "a voice crying in the wilderness." Russian proposals to translate these political commitments into the form of an international treaty, to make them legally binding, were rejected. We were told explicitly that only NATO can provide legal security guarantees.

The OSCE Secretary General and the individual States that have chaired over the years have done nothing to uphold the dignity of the Organization, its autonomous character and the principles contained in the documents approved at the highest level. These documents turned out to be empty words, as well as many other things that we have often talked about lately, including the notorious Minsk agreements, signed, as you can see, only in order not to implement them and buy time to prepare for war against the Russian Federation.

As with NATO, the OSCE will disintegrate and be replaced by a new organization as will the vast majority of Post WW2 European organizations. As for this "Question: What are the joint Russian-Belarusian steps to counter the expansion of NATO and the provocations of the Kiev regime?" Lavrov expanded on his initial statement by repeating much of what he's explained previously but added his personal assessment of the types of people running NATO:

"These are people who are absolutely arrogant and put their irrepressible political ambitions, an attempt to realize their sense of their own superiority, their colonial and neocolonial dream and illusion above the interests of their own peoples. Hopefully sobering up will come. We will do everything to ensure that our colleagues from NATO and the EU sober up as soon as possible." [My Emphasis]

IMO, it's possible Lavrov was foreshadowing what's soon to come. But his meetings in Minsk today were previously scheduled months ago and aren't in reaction to recent developments.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 19 2023 18:33 utc | 81

Posted by: Aleph_Null | Jan 19 2023 17:33 utc | 38

thank you for the link on Ajamu Baraka's smackdown of the Ukraine Solidarity network. I have one ex-friend who is one of those: 75, still sports a pony tail/rat tail, anti Vietnam war protester, Sandinista flag waiver in the 80s, mostly wore Mayan clothes until around 2000, then started to morph into a DNC lover, loved Obama, adored Tom Friedman, displayed his Hillary pussy hat for years, hates Trump. Hates Putin. We got a Christmas card from him and guess what? Slava Ukraine!
We don't talk anymore...

Posted by: migueljose | Jan 19 2023 18:37 utc | 82

@ Boo | Jan 19 2023 17:55 utc | 52 quote -

"It's not a 100 year strategy, but a 10 year one, which is in any case a persistent feature of American political thought.

Even if the writing is on the wall, the damage they can do on their way out is immense."

boo.. thanks for your posts and challenges to the board here.. i mostly agree with you here...time is a huge factor.. who it favours here is hard to say and so it is hard to know how this plays out..

@ arch bungle - thanks for your posts as well..

@ Paul Greenwood | Jan 19 2023 18:33 utc | 80

do you think schulz has finally figured it out?? it will get very interesting if he isn't overcome by all the loons in the green party and etc. etc.. for him to stand up and be counted at this critical juncture in germanys history... it is nice to dream.. the disconnect between germany and the usa could get greater if germany had a leader with foresight and wisdom.. i doubt it will happen.. they will kowtow to the usa, just as has canada, and all the other puppets here...

Posted by: james | Jan 19 2023 18:39 utc | 83

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 19 2023 17:47 utc | 46

Thank you for your posts and insights, especially your coverage of Lavrov, Putin and others. You are a wonderful contributor.

Posted by: migueljose | Jan 19 2023 18:40 utc | 84

In addition to an apparent inability to formulate any coherent strategy besides more of the same, the US war machine seems to have a problem with basic math.

Rebuilding U.S. Inventories: Six Critical Systems
https://www.csis.org/analysis/rebuilding-us-inventories-six-critical-systems

"Current production is 3,250 per month. DOD says that it can get that rate up to 20,000 per month (240,000 per year) by the spring of 2023 and 40,000 per month (480,000 per year) by 2025. At this surge rate, it would take about six years to rebuild inventories allowing for normal peacetime usage and assuming no further transfers from inventory.

That is a big assumption because of Ukraine’s high shell usage. In April, the United States announced it was sending 155 mm howitzers to Ukraine. Those probably arrived in May and began firing intensively in June. It is not clear how many of the million rounds they have used in the six months of operations, but, assuming Ukraine has one month of artillery ammunition left on hand, that comes out to 143,000 rounds fired a month, or about 4,800 rounds per day. Combined with shells fired from Ukraine's Soviet-era artillery, this is in the vicinity of the 6,000–7,000 per day that Ukraine has said it was firing (and which was considered inadequate). Even the 2025 surge rate would satisfy only a third of this need. To bridge the gap, other countries will have to provide ammunition, and a lot of it."

Posted by: Archimedes | Jan 19 2023 18:41 utc | 85

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 18:26 utc | 74

It is possible. What I see as recurring thing with US/Israel/west is that, in their sheer hubris, they seem to be completely oblivious to possibility that their enemies may use same tactics/weapons against them, so they are utterly unprepared for it. Projection is powerful drug.

In simple technological terms, eg. it never occurred to anyone in US that there may be some country some day, that will fire a missile towards US. They are used to bomb small countries, but it is unconceivable that small country may shoot back. Hence, US is impotent when it comes to anti air defense.

Examples are numerous.

Posted by: Abe | Jan 19 2023 18:42 utc | 86

Funny I thought you said west had no more arms to give to Ukraine?

LOL!

UK, several NATO states announced new 'unprecedented' package of military aid for Kiev
Defense Ministers of the UK, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and representatives of Denmark, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands and Slovakia have negotiated a new "unprecedented free aid package" of weapons for Ukraine

On top of that France, Finland, Canada, Sweden have provided Ukraine with heavy weapons past days
https://tass.com/world/1564703

Meanwhile Russia have still no idea where are these weapons are transfered from, that is what you get with a low IQ army.

Posted by: ItsMe*anon(Z) | Jan 19 2023 18:47 utc | 87

i guess you get paid for that stupidity... low iq, lol.. yeah..

Posted by: james | Jan 19 2023 18:48 utc | 88

Why does nearly every thread start with some troll comments?
And isn't this strange: trolls allways nag about Russia's "indecision" and tardiness and lack of means...while a year onward the "West" is still scraping the barrel and now deciding or not on sending this or that semi-valid artillery system or cold war stock...Let us be honest: NATO is dragging its feet and remains undecided if it will take the plunge into WOIII or not. Russia calmly looks on and prepares for the worst. As President Putin said: we are prepared for anything - and clearly they are. The Western politicians could well fill a home for the infirm demented (or a prison for narcistic criminals) so if brains are going to decide the issue then Russia will win no matter how.

Posted by: Anthony | Jan 19 2023 18:48 utc | 89

So why haven't the bridges, roadways, railways, ports, and tunnels leading into the country by which this military equipment would enter been destroyed?
Posted by: Niranam | Jan 19 2023 16:15 utc | 4

Everyone asks this but no one knows exactly why. Even more after the underwater drone attacks.
Roads and railways probably work because of "economic reasons". Even factories and pipes with dangerous chemicals, which can be used in terrorist attacks in or near what is now Russia, still work, don't they? All Ukr exports and "imports" work perfectly, Russia's exports of food and fertilizers are sabotaged or blocked in transit. Even food offered for free to poor countries can't reach them. Interesting, isn't it?

Posted by: rk | Jan 19 2023 18:52 utc | 90

@james

You're welcome. The greatest advantage of this place is that it's not an echo chamber.

Posted by: Boo | Jan 19 2023 18:52 utc | 91

Posted by: WJ | Jan 19 2023 16:16 utc | 5
"I have also seen pictures on twitter of Pantsir air defenses being hoisted to the top of buildings in Moscow"

Interesting, have a link? Actually, southfront should have an article on it later today

"I don't want to doom, but I am growing very skeptical that there will be any big Russian offensive this winter, and I am worrying that Russia is unable or unwilling to respond to increasingly brash US involvement. This will only lead to more loss of life, even further US escalation, and in the worst case a spiralling out of control of the situation"

No worries, knowing Russia's MO I know they have the Mother of all Bitch Slaps on the ready all set to go. You all will be surprised!

Posted by: nathan in WA US | Jan 19 2023 18:53 utc | 92

Russia is "enjoying" its economic "troubles": RT reports, "Russia posts record current account surplus:"

The current account – which measures the difference between outgoing funds and money coming into the country through trade, investment and transfers – grew by almost 86% year-on-year in 2022 to $227.4 billion, the regulator’s preliminary data showed.

The central bank said soaring commodity prices throughout 2022 had helped push the current account balance higher, while imports slowly recovered in the second half of the year.

“The value of imports of goods and services was reduced,” the regulator said. “Nevertheless, the decline in imports observed in the first half of 2022 compared to last year’s indicator was replaced by their gradual recovery.”

Russia’s foreign trade surplus in goods and services also surged by 66% from $170.1 billion in 2021 to $282.3 billion last year, reaching a historic maximum for the second straight year.

The outlook for 2023 is for the breaking of that record. Over time, the surplus will diminish but overall trade volume will continue to set new records. The loss of the European market as Diesen foresaw isn't the Russia Killer it was hyped to be by people illiterate in geoeconomics, which is a very common affliction throughout the West.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 19 2023 18:53 utc | 93

Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 18:07 utc | 60

Pentagon is or was talking about China invasion of Taiwan in six to twelve months so I guess that roughly when they intend triggering a war there. I just looked up Taiwan presidential elections and it looks like the next is January 2024 so the US have to make their move before that while their asset is still in power. Judging by the recent local elections, she will be booted out and KMT who are open to reconciliation with China will be in power.

That is I think why US has pulled out of the war against Russia while pushing the Europeans into continuing it. I believe the US passed a law sometime back that they had to send weapons to Taiwan so I guess weapons that were going to Ukraine have now been diverted to Taiwan.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jan 19 2023 18:55 utc | 94

Its obvious isn't it? Russia does not have the capability or willpower, or both.

Posted by: Muthaucker | Jan 19 2023 17:51 utc | 49

The capability is certainly there. A couple dozen Kh-22s will disable all entry points for weeks. It will get repaired, but then you hit them again, and so on. Use small nukes if necessary, to really send the message (it can be done with minimal civilian casualties if you hit the roads and railways in between settlements; you just need to dig craters big enough to take a long time to repair).

Hit them again while they are being repaired and kill the crews -- that is what the Ukrainians did with the Antonovsky bridge, so it's fair game.

And, of course, there should have been a powerful attack along the Polish border on February 24th, when that was much easier to do, precisely in order to prevent that scenario. It wasn't that hard to foresee it will get to this point.

Putin being a coward/compromised by loyalties other than the goal of Russia winning decisively is what will get us all killed.

At this point it's hard to see what else other than a nuclear strike will stop the flow of weapons. NATO isn't afraid anymore, and are openly saying it. The only option is a crushing offensive from Brest, but even that doesn't seem to be coming.

Posted by: shadowbanned | Jan 19 2023 18:57 utc | 95

Perhaps the real reason for not sending Leopards and Abrams is that they are not much use for a war in Ukraine where bridges and other infrastructure are not built for 60+ ton - monstertanks? Where there is no knowledge and no infrastructure for maintaining them? If it takes manufacturer Rheinmetall with armies of specialised engineers and massive arsenals of spare parts a year to get a handful of tanks into a state that they are just about usable - how long will they last on a battlefield where they are being repaired with spit, mud and tree branches by soldiers who got their expertise from pictures in sales brochures and a three-week training course?

Let's face it: Just like Panzerhaubitze 2000, Leopards and Abrams are Formula One - Monsters that look terrific when displayed on a stage at an exhibition, or when performing on a manicured race track. But they are not built for real wars.

Posted by: Marvin | Jan 19 2023 18:59 utc | 96

Upthread someone mentioned Patriarch Kyrill's recent remarks which RT reports thusly:

Speaking after a religious service marking the Orthodox Christian holiday of Epiphany, the primate claimed that both the international community and Russia are facing “very huge threats.”

According to Patriarch Kirill, the root of the problem is that some “madmen” believe that Russia, which “has powerful weapons and is populated by extremely strong people… who had never given in to an enemy and had always emerged victorious, could be defeated under the current circumstances.”

Neither would it be possible to “impose on them certain values that cannot even be called values, so that they would be like everyone else and obey those who have the power to control most of the world,” he noted.

“We pray to the Lord so that he enlightens those madmen and helps them understand that any desire to destroy Russia will mean the end of the world,” he added. [My Emphasis]

That raises an interesting question: Can madmen be enlightened, or does their madness prevent such a development? IMO, most of the bar would say that the likes of Bolton, Pompeo, Nuland, Sullivan, Blinken, et al are incapable of being enlightened in such a manner that negates their madness.

Posted by: karlof1 | Jan 19 2023 19:10 utc | 97

I guess when the West started the war they did not expect it would take so long. They thought sanctions would finish Russia within weeks or months. And during that time the old Soviet stuff would be enough for Ukraine.
Now that the West would have to send their own stuff, they are also worried it will get into the hands of the Russians, which is very likely.


Regarding the stuff entering Ukraine, how does it get across the river? If Russia destroyed all bridges, how would it get to the east?

Posted by: Nico | Jan 19 2023 19:11 utc | 98

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Jan 19 2023 18:55 utc | 94

Pentagon is or was talking about China invasion of Taiwan in six to twelve months so I guess that roughly when they intend triggering a war there.

I'm pretty sure that's been their plan for ages. I'm going to bet that the entire Taiwanese power structure is going to stall when told to go up directly against the PLA.

Posted by: Arch Bungle | Jan 19 2023 19:14 utc | 99

UK, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Denmark, Czech Republic, Netherlands, Slovakia make "Tallinn Pledge": to help Kiev expel Russian forces from Ukraine, ensure Ukrainian battlefield victory in 2023.

Posted by: rk | Jan 19 2023 19:15 utc | 100

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