Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
November 20, 2023

A Look At Others' Notes On Ukraine

The war in Ukraine is currently in a rather quiet phase, mostly because of bad weather with heavy rain and snow.


via time and date - bigger

Today's daily report (in Russian) by the Russian Ministry of Defense adds up to only 340 Ukrainian casualties, i.e. dead and wounded. That is the second lowest count since early March when I started to sum up the daily numbers.

The bad weather will continue over the next weeks. It prevents drones from flying and movement across now swampy fields. The level of fighting will thus be low.

Nonetheless the war continues. Recently several bigger pieces, nearly all pessimistic for Ukraine, have come out in the main stream media.

Simplicitus has a long overview of these:

New Raft of Articles Tighten the Screws on Zelensky, Plead for Course Correction

Several non-mainstream writers have also taken a deeper look:

Sergei Witte, aka BigSerge, has published a long overview over the war:

Russo-Ukrainian War: The Reckoning

Russia scholar Gordon Hahn looks at the influence the Special Military Operation (SMO) in Ukraine will have on Russia's society:

In Putin’s Russia Politics is War by Other Means and War is Revolutionizing Russian Military Affairs

While comparing the SMO to the totally devastating war on Gaza he writes:

Russia’s war strategy and tactics are designed precisely to avoid and eschew practices that would bring large numbers of Ukrainian civilian and Russian military casualties. The strategy is to destroy Ukrainian military forces and potential. For now, Russia pursues victory in its SVO not for the sake of territorial conquest, contrary to Western delusions, but to defeat the Ukrainian army and Maidan regime force Kiev to acquiesce to its political goals:
(1) accept Russia’s annexations of territories under threat from Ukrainian discrimination, repression, and violence;
(2) renounce membership and close ties with NATO;
(3) and adopt measures to protect the Russian language and ethnic Russians in whatever rump Ukraine remains.

This will amount to Putin’s declared goals of ‘demilitarization’ and ‘denazification’ of Maidan Ukraine.

Yves Smith at Naked Capitalism is looking at what may be left or not within a future state of Ukraine:

Ukraine End Game: Putin and Medvedev Discuss Maps, Putting Kiev on the Menu

She correctly notes:

Militarily, Ukraine is approaching a catastrophic condition. That does not mean a collapse is imminent; key variables include whether the Ukraine military leadership revolts against Zelensky and how hard Russia pushes into growing Ukraine weakness. Russia may prefer to go slowly (mind you, it is making a concerted effort to crack the well fortified Avdiivka), not just to reduce losses of its troops, but also to more thoroughly bleed out Ukraine and give the West time to adjust psychologically to Ukraine’s prostration.

I largely agree with all the above pieces. Together the present an excellent and realistic picture of the state of the war and its larger consequences.

Additionally of note is a recent El Pais piece in which members of 47th Ukrainian brigade, trained on and equipped with western weapons, describe their losses, weapon failures and their lack of ammunition:

In the siege of the front of Ukrainian Avdiivka: “The Russians are more prepared for the war and to die” (in Spanish) (archived)

The Bulgarian Military website has some English language excerpts from the above:

Ukrainian officer: My M109 Paladin SPH has an accuracy error of 70m

I can not add much to all of that writing. Just a tiny item from a new New York Times piece of the war:

In Ukraine’s Slowed-Down War, Death Comes as Quickly as Ever

Frederick B. Hodges, a retired lieutenant general and the former top U.S. Army commander in Europe, cautioned that it was misleading to gauge Ukraine’s success simply by the territory its forces had gained. He said he was continually struck by “how linear and land-centric some of the observers” of the war remain.

Indeed - the war is not about territory. It is about defeating the enemy. As Gordon Hahn wrote above:

This will amount to Putin’s declared goals of ‘demilitarization’ and ‘denazification’ of Maidan Ukraine.

As long as the Ukrainian army attacks there is no need for the Russian military to take more territory. It simply demilitarizes whatever comes up its way.

The NYT piece leaves out where Hodges is coming from. Previous NYT pieces noted that was working as a lobbyist:

... Frederick B. Hodges, the former top U.S. Army commander in Europe who is now with the Center for European Policy Analysis.

The Center for European Policy Analysis, or CEPA, is anti-Russian lobby shop in Washington DC that is financed by techno billionaires, weapon manufacturers, the U.S. State Department and NATO.

But what is with Hodges' quote and why do I point it out.

Well, here it is in its entirety:

Frederick B. Hodges, a retired lieutenant general and the former top U.S. Army commander in Europe, cautioned that it was misleading to gauge Ukraine’s success simply by the territory its forces had gained. He said he was continually struck by “how linear and land-centric some of the observers” of the war remain.

“How telling that after nine years of conflict, two years since Russia’s invasion, with all the advantages the Kremlin has on its side, they can control only around 18 percent of Ukraine,” he said.

How does this make sense?

  • Sentence 1+2: Accounting for Ukraine's success in the war by looking at the amount of territory it has retaken makes no sense.
  • Sentence 3: We should measure Russia's success in the war by looking at the amount of territory it has taken.

Where is the logic in that? 

Posted by b on November 20, 2023 at 15:05 UTC | Permalink

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headline: Defense Secretary Austin makes unannounced visit to Kyiv for high-level talks on US support

Posted by: Don Bacon | Nov 20 2023 15:12 utc | 1

Logic is for soldiers not hired lobbyists.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 20 2023 15:14 utc | 2

The US is still deluded that it thinks that it can control outcomes, just as in Afghanistan where its Western-trained army collapsed overnight. The same for the South Vietnamese army. The same for Iraq.

Russia is fully in control, and if it understands its position correctly will continue on with the war, delivering a festering wound to the West throughout 2024. The US elites, who thought that they would crush Russia in 2022 have instead been delivered an ongoing disaster for their election year.

If Russia really has stockpiled a huge amount of drones and missiles for a Winter destruction of Ukrainian infrastructure, and 10 million shells from North Korea for a Spring (or perhaps Winter when the ground has hardened?) offensive, the next line of Ukrainian defence may be the Dniepr.

Posted by: Roger | Nov 20 2023 15:29 utc | 3

If the goal of the proxy war was to weaken Russia, the collective West has succeeded in weakening itself. If the goal of the proxy war was to overthrow Putin, the Collective West has managed to undermine its own hegemony and collapse its moral, geopolitical leadership.

Posted by: Moses22 | Nov 20 2023 15:33 utc | 4

I see i have some homework. (rolls up sleeves) Thanks, b.

Posted by: pretzelattack | Nov 20 2023 15:44 utc | 5

Talking of others notes: https://www.indianpunchline.com/us-embarks-on-proxy-war-against-iran/

The subject is Iran and resistance forces from Yemen to Lebanon (and much in between) but the underlying message is that "... the US’ diplomatic isolation in the Middle East is touching an unprecedented level today..."

And not just in the middle east, in fact if you leave Israel, Canada, The Marshall Islands and other south pacific atolls out of it, it is true of just about everywhere.
And the defeat of NATO in Ukraine is a large part of that.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 20 2023 15:50 utc | 6

Population is still leaving Ukraine. As the free money and free goods from US vanish there is less and less reason to stay. Best time to leave is now. Take your ill-gotten gains and settle in Miami.

When rump Ukraine is down to 5 million inhabitants with average age above 60 Russia will move in and repopulate.

Posted by: oldhippie | Nov 20 2023 15:50 utc | 7

Summary of all of the above ...

What used to be known as 'Ukraine' is FUBAR. Period.

Posted by: Don Firineach | Nov 20 2023 15:54 utc | 8

The future :
https://youtu.be/JvBeB2Q4l_w?si=JIS6fagTIV3U8AIl

Interview with fmr ambassador Paul Craig Roberts

Posted by: Itsmeagain | Nov 20 2023 15:56 utc | 9

Here's an easy guage of the success of the "indispensable" Americans' campaign against Russia.(Its their campaign-the collective Europeans are merely poodles).
The Russian people are turning towards their leadership.
The American people and the collective West are turning away from theirs'.
Pretty easy calculation really.

Posted by: wilsonK | Nov 20 2023 15:57 utc | 10

I believe that the Russian military is minimizing the number of civilian deaths in Ukraine in order to reduce the backlash from the local population in the event of a future occupation.

Posted by: CIROC | Nov 20 2023 16:02 utc | 11

Where is the logic in that?
Posted by b on November 20, 2023 at 15:05 UTC

He simply parrots various msm messages but has no brain to mix them.

Posted by: rk | Nov 20 2023 16:03 utc | 12

b,
sentence 1 and 3 do make sense when combined. In sentence 3 it is inferred (at least by me) that only 18% occupied proved Russia is taking its time for land conquering. It is not the best way of saying it, and may be due to simply how speech is phrased and presented.

An example.
Bruce Springsteen doesn't like or appreciate country music.

How telling is it that he has never asked to appear in the Grand Ol Oprey.

It is a way of stating that an inaction can also support a position.

Posted by: BroncoBilly | Nov 20 2023 16:10 utc | 13

>> While comparing the SMO to the totally devastating war on Gaza....

If Selensky's worries about Maidan 3.0 are justified, Putin's softly, softly approach makes a lot of sense. He has managed to keep a large part of the world's opinion on his side, and it looks like Selensky is loosing support at home.

Posted by: Marvin | Nov 20 2023 16:13 utc | 14

Thanks b, that is very instructive of where we have arrived

There is no logic when the messenger brings the impossible news:
“As I did stand my watch upon the hill,
I look’d toward Birnam, and anon, methought,
The wood began to move.”

Yup , it’s Shakespearean tragedy.

CEPA, the anti-Russian lobby shop in Washington DC that is financed by techno billionaires, weapon manufacturers, the U.S. State Department and NATO - The Collective Waste & Hodges are Macbeth as he holds on to the weird sisters prediction when it becomes obvious an army is approaching:
I will not be afraid of death and bane,
Till Birnam forest come to Dunsinane. (Ukraine).

Or something like that, if you get me.

She’elensky of course is Lady MacBeth - the blood will never wash of her hand.

Posted by: DunGroanin | Nov 20 2023 16:22 utc | 15

Yellen opining on Ukraine. "We can’t allow Ukraine to lose a battle on the homefront."
https://twitter.com/disclosetv/status/1726608281442082894

Yellen recently flew to Beijing. That Yellen is so heavily involved in geo-politics shows, I think, that the US economy rides on faith rather than modern American? economic theory that has been argued here by some.
That faith rest on American power and how it is perceived in the world. More and more it can be seen that the solid factors Martyanov often cites are what underpins a large economy.

To argue pure economics or economic theory such as Hudson vs what he terms Chicago school of economics can go on endlessly but factors like Yellen being so heavily involved in geo-politics are very good indicators of where things stand.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 20 2023 16:34 utc | 16

CIROC | Nov 20 2023 16:02 utc | 11

Ukraine and the west have been pushing civilian deaths, attacks on civilian infrastructure by Russia, yet even the west/Ukraine counts are exceptionally low. In major overnight missile strikes casualties announced by Ukrain/west on average a in low single digit numbers. To gain higher civilian death toll, Ukraine must undertake strikes to create a large civilian casualty figure. Over the course of the war a number of videos have come out of Ukraine that show Ukrainian air defense missiles striking buildings. The are others perhaps accidental that are the onloy large civilian casualty counts for missile strikes such as the Toska-u strike with cluster munitions on a railway station.

Majority of civilian deaths are amongst ethnic Russians either near the frontline area or behind the Russian frontlines that are deliberately targeted by US/UK/Ukraine.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 20 2023 16:48 utc | 17

I was thinking about the Russian situation, in particular when they might decide to move forward and "take territory", and I reached the conclusion that they simply have no reason to do so while the AFU continues to come to them, however long that may be. (Aside from Avdeevka or however it is transliterated.) Six months, a year, its all good.

And contrariwise, the AFU cannot stop, lest the Russian do that.

Posted by: Bemildred | Nov 20 2023 16:50 utc | 18

Where is the logic?
For a neocon warmonger, logic is a curse.

Posted by: Eoin Clancy | Nov 20 2023 16:56 utc | 19

The world truly needs a just mechanism for crimes against humanity.

Posted by: Forest | Nov 20 2023 16:59 utc | 20

thanks b.. i liked what prezelattack said... lots of links which encapsulate your overall view, or reflect it.. thanks for all the work you do here..

Posted by: james | Nov 20 2023 16:59 utc | 21

Russia's economy is booming, the sanctions have had no effect...Russia's military is far stronger than it was, and fully up to date and beyond with drones, missiles, and huge supplies of artillery shells and other necessities..Most of the casualties have been DPR territorials or Wagner forces..Putin has struck a gold mine, and he doesn't need to work any faster exploiting the ore...

Posted by: pyrrhus | Nov 20 2023 17:01 utc | 22

While our host b mentions a lot, there is another layer.

The whole western/nonwestern argument about Ukraine has left the sphere of a common factual basis, i. e. whether the glass is half-full or half-empty. Growing panic and impertinence among the losing west reveal their childish clinging to a world that no longer exists; that world is no longer that transatlantic disc as the center of the universe, but it is a sphere among many others, revolving around the sun and not vice versa.

Western propaganda has not only outperformed itself, it even managed to immunize its recipients at home against any sparks of reality.

This hits Germany twice and three times over. A country with few raw materials, whose only resource is education and the innovation that theoretically results from it (patents statistics, anyone?), is governed by the lazy and incompetent. Incompetence leads to a belief in climate nonsense, moral superiority and an even further disconnection from reality.

Only shock therapy can save what can still be saved. That's why it is pointless to come up with logic and facts in the current state of events, and that's why neither Biden nor Scholz nor von der Leyen will play any part in whatever format a Yalta 2.0 conference on the new world order will be held.

Posted by: Nervous German | Nov 20 2023 17:11 utc | 23

Our source in the OP said that the Office of the President wants to use the hatred of Ukrainians for the TCC against Zaluzhny, who personifies the Armed Forces of Ukraine, and therefore all excesses in mobilization are his responsibility.

At Bankova they are preparing a series of information campaigns that should discredit the Commander-in-Chief in order to later dismiss him.


https://t.me/rezident_ua/20542
Our source in the OP said that the Office of the President will continue to remove Zaluzhny’s people from the Armed Forces of Ukraine, and the main role in this purge will be given to the Minister of Defense. In this way, Andriy Ermak wants to divert suspicion from Bankova that Zelensky organized the purges.

https://t.me/rezident_ua/20544
We agree with our colleagues that Bankovaya wants to direct all the negativity from the unlimited mobilization to Commander-in-Chief Zaluzhny.

We insided about this on August 14, pointing out that Ermak was planting a “time bomb” under Zaluzhny.

The war between Zelensky and Zaluzhny will intensify - this is a fact, as will the contradictions between office and military personnel.


https://t.me/legitimniy/16743

Posted by: Down South | Nov 20 2023 17:14 utc | 24

⚡️🇷🇺🇺🇦🇩🇪 German political Scientist Alexander Rar has stated that the #US and #Germany now differ in their Assessments of the #Ukraine Conflict⚡️

💬 While Washington has started talking about the "Ukrainian deadlock", the withdrawal of aid to Kiev and the need to negotiate with Moscow, Berlin "listens only to Zelensky", believes in #Ukraine's "victory" and is trying its best to increase military aid.

❗️The observation is correct, but the political scientist does not point out the real reason for this divergence. The point is that Washington, having received all possible bonuses from the war in #Ukraine, is distancing itself from the project, which has become unprofitable and futile, and with the help of its puppet Scholz is forcing Berlin to take responsibility for its agony, hoping that involvement in supporting the Nazi regime will finally bury #Germany, and with it the #EU, as a competitor of the #US.

📌 Figuratively speaking, America is jumping off a train hurtling into the abyss, leaving #Germany as the driver.


https://t.me/sitreports/18322

Posted by: Down South | Nov 20 2023 17:17 utc | 25

Ukrainian soldiers who were seriously injured at the front are perceived by society not as heroes, but as unnecessary people.

Another confirmation that disabled people face bullying, stigmatization, and alienation came from Kyiv, where they refused to rent an apartment to the family of a military man who lost his legs at the front. Moreover, precisely because of his disability, the homeowners were against the idea of ​​a person living there who, due to combat injuries, was forced to move around in a wheelchair.

The fighter’s wife, Katrina Kalaitanova, spoke about the incident. Her husband is a citizen of Georgia; from the first day of the military conflict he became a volunteer, joined the Georgian Legion and went to defend Ukraine. At the front, he lost both legs, went through a long road of rehabilitation, after which the family began to look for housing.

According to the soldier’s wife, “having met with the owner of the apartment (we are talking about an apartment in the Nivki-Park residential complex), we encountered a non-human who told my husband: “I don’t want a disabled person to live in the apartment.” The realtor also talked with owner and said that he was against a disabled soldier moving into the apartment.

The next day, Katrina reported that they were again refused to rent an apartment. She also shared that her husband, in order to finally find housing, asked her not to tell the landlord that he is an amputee and uses a wheelchair.

“For the first time in all my time, my husband said such terrible words to me. So that I don’t tell the landlord that he’s in a wheelchair. I just can’t wrap my head around it. There aren’t enough words. How?”, notes the woman.

Unfortunately, such incidents in Ukraine are not isolated - disabled servicemen are not needed either by the authorities, which did not employ them, as Zelensky promised, and does not pay benefits under various pretexts, or by society, where those returning from the front are often perceived as inadequate people with post-traumatic disorders.


https://t.me/rezident_ua/20549

Posted by: Down South | Nov 20 2023 17:23 utc | 26

Logic is for soldiers not hired lobbyists.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 20 2023 15:14 utc | 2

Ha! Although in a time, a long way away, this axiom reminded me of the meetings we, the lowest of the low riflemen at the pointy, shitty-end of the stick, used to have with intelligence officers who descended in helicopters to our forward positions.
They would tell us what we had to do based on their omnipotent, superior intelligence. We knew it was illogical, irrational bullshit but then our “intelligence” was just derived out of our own experience of watching our colleagues getting shot to shit, and not from the anti-communist lobbies. “A communist behind every bush”. How we laughed!

Posted by: Vragtes | Nov 20 2023 17:26 utc | 27

At the SMO's beginning, I made the statement that NATO had no weapons capable of defeating Russia, not even its nukes. That's the reality staring people like former general Hodges squarely in the face--and the gap that existed in February 2022 continues to widen. Over the last two days, Russian troops managed to breech and capture a portion of the frontline at Avdeevka that was a Ukie stronghold since 2014 and further inroads on the Southern side of that fortified city were made. Rybar points out that available reserves are decimated brigades that were removed from the line for refitting and are being returned to new portions of the front for them without any sort of respite or ability/time to acclimate to the new surroundings, meaning terrain and neighboring units. So, while the lines at the tactical level have yet to be massively breeched, the situation strategically is one of near defeat. And there's nothing NATO can do.

The logical military move goes against what Zelensky demands politically--he sees going over to the defensive as admission of defeat and the end of NATO largess and thus his graft source and that of the Nazis standing behind him. And as the natural cover for artillery fades into its Winter bareness, it will be massively targeted by drones so that come the SMO's second anniversary, little will remain to halt a severe Russian offensive.

Posted by: karlof1 | Nov 20 2023 17:30 utc | 28

⚡️🇷🇺🇺🇦🇩🇪 German political Scientist Alexander Rar has stated that the #US and #Germany now differ ... Berlin "listens only to Zelensky", believes in #Ukraine's "victory" and is trying its best to increase military aid. ... 📌 Figuratively speaking, America is jumping off a train hurtling into the abyss, leaving #Germany as the driver.

Posted by: Down South | Nov 20 2023 17:17 utc | 25

That's why Biden ordered Steinmeier to the White House on October 6, one night before Bibi unleashed IDF on Gaza: The Ukraine also was your pet project, dear Frank, and now it's all yours. America needs to focus on Israel.

Frank-Walter Steinmeier was German FM when Victoria Nuland distributed the most expensive cookies in human history on Maidan square.

Posted by: Nervous German | Nov 20 2023 17:31 utc | 29

a recent El Pais piece

It is behind a pay wall. The archive is available.

This "piece" says that the Russian army lost 150,000 men. No way. Always the same propaganda and bullshit. To read the western merdias is bad for one's mental health.

Posted by: Naive | Nov 20 2023 17:33 utc | 30

Putin has struck a gold mine, and he doesn't need to work any faster exploiting the ore...
Posted by: pyrrhus | Nov 20 2023 17:01 utc | 22

For anybody who has studied Putin, what we are seeing in the Russian economy is classic Putin. Attacks on Russia are used to advantage rather than just take the blow and suffer in silence.
The sanctions from hell... have been used to greatly strengthen Russia's economy. Something that would have to be forced on the populace in peacetime creating unrest (civilian economy eg tycoons investing in Russia rather than offshoring profits ect).

Perhaps something to do with judo philosophy. Always using an attack to advantage.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 20 2023 17:46 utc | 31

Posted by: bevin | Nov 20 2023 15:50 utc | 6

Great article from MK Bhadrakumar.

Posted by: anon2020 | Nov 20 2023 17:54 utc | 32

Austin says Ukr going to get another 100 million military funds....IMF another 1.1 b loan ...is Germany still trying to sort out 5b euro p.a.....any collated update as to what military aid promised but still to be delivered presumably F16 from Denmark etc and associated training... Abrams ..other assorted ...some shells HIMARS stormshadow etc...UK and others still training troops???? A Ramstein Ukr friends support meeting soon?

Posted by: Jo | Nov 20 2023 18:05 utc | 33

@ Jo | Nov 20 2023 18:05 utc | 33

---

Israel's 4-6 year dollar bonds pay ~6.5%.

Inflation is going to the moon.

Posted by: too scents | Nov 20 2023 18:09 utc | 34

@Posted by: Down South | Nov 20 2023 17:23 utc | 26

A Georgian volunteering to fight for Ukraine, stupid is as stupid does (I think maybe Forrest Gump said that). Lost a leg for nothing, when he could have stayed happy back in Georgia. Ukrainians do seem to me from their behaviour in their new host European countries etc. to be some of the most ungrateful and entitled assholes alive. Maybe its the full-on propaganda in the Ukrainian schools and media since 2014 and living in an utterly corrupted nation for so long.

Posted by: Roger | Nov 20 2023 18:16 utc | 35

Perhaps something to do with judo philosophy. Always using an attack to advantage.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 20 2023 17:46 utc | 31

#############

We are living in interesting times where patience is seen as impotence and strategic adaptation as a weakness.

Posted by: LoveDonbass | Nov 20 2023 18:26 utc | 36

Posted by: BroncoBilly | Nov 20 2023 16:10 utc | 13

That's a charitable way of interpreting his statement, but it doesn't quite fit. It sounds more like what he's saying is, "Ukraine didn't take much territory in the counteroffensive, but land doesn't matter much. Ukraine attrited Russia during the counteroffensive and that's more important than land taken. Besides, Russia only controls 18% of the country, so Ukraine is doing relatively well." It's two different copes that contradict each other, but that's par for western analysis.

Posted by: catdog | Nov 20 2023 18:26 utc | 37

“How telling that after nine years of conflict, two years since Russia’s invasion, with all the advantages the Kremlin has on its side, they can control only around 18 percent of Ukraine,” he said.

Well my assessment of the US military leadership is that they are either idiots or intellectually dishonest.
I give them the benefit of doubt and assume the latter.
But even so, this is what our "war colleges" produce - bureaucrats, highly proficient in disinformation.
Effective in the board room, but not where it counts.
The suck act managing war but excel in promoting them.

Harkens to Rummy and the "known unknowns" thing... was was that from Sun Tsu?

Posted by: jared | Nov 20 2023 18:43 utc | 38

The future :

Interview with fmr ambassador Paul Craig Roberts

Posted by: Itsmeagain | Nov 20 2023 15:56 utc | 9


The populist Right are fake revolutionaries.

https://unherd.com/2023/07/the-populist-rights-greatest-weakness/

One of the best articles I have read on the subject. As voters move recklessly from one con trick to another. The 3 card monte gets them every time. See Argentina for details which WILL be bailed out by the state by the time he is finished.

I personally can't wait as once again the Austrian libertarians will get their arses handed to them on a platter. Even though they will still say it was somebody else's fault. Disappear for another generation.

Posted by: Echo Chamber | Nov 20 2023 18:50 utc | 39

by Nervous German | Nov 20 2023 17:11 utc

I think that there is even bigger picture drawn, explained in this article, where
Ukraine is called 'Strategic Addition'. And the fight is for Southern Heartland aka Africa. I think that EU has rendered themselves into unimportant South-Western archipelago, but mainly because of Germany slimy and regressive politics.

It is a new wave of corruptocracy where I think that it is possible to notice a fundamental failure in how Scholtz, connected with Warburg private banking mischievous deeds, helped ripping around 40 billion Euros out of EU monetary system and went mostly unpunished for everyone involved.
Heist of enormous proportions. In a proper civil society everyone involved would be banned from approaching anything 'public service' by afar, let alone occupying public functions.
So the Germany failed again in a political sense, and at the moment, sleepwalking towards forbidding opposition regardless how extreme or not it is, resulting in destroying democratic principles, all together.
Germany is a pressure cooker more than a melting pot for the last few years.

Of course this just as an example of shortsighted view, as the South Heartland is out of EU/Germany's capability, scope and a reach anyway, and for sometime to come.
Fight is for 20% of a landmass and its vast resources. Of course, that there are granularities further down the road.

Posted by: whirlX | Nov 20 2023 18:50 utc | 40

"Posted by: Down South | Nov 20 2023 17:23 utc | 26"

I have no reason not to believe this tragic story however to then go further and claim that refusing to rent to injured vets is a common Ukrainian thing stinks of propaganda.

Regimes are fair game but you find empathy, kindness and generosity all over the world.

Posted by: HB_Norica | Nov 20 2023 18:57 utc | 41

Off-topic request (apologies) but perhaps there is a way of entangling the two—after all the world's geopolitics do seem to be converging (Zelensky-Netanyahu-Milei...?):
b, can you offer preliminary thoughts about Milei's victory in Argentina? I am keen to hear your views and those of more learned barflies on this extraordinary event.

Posted by: Patroklos | Nov 20 2023 19:03 utc | 42

Posted by: jared | Nov 20 2023 18:43 utc | 38

They are idiots, idiots with guns and money.

And that is how german think tanks "see" it.
Ucraine is bying time for the "Wehrmacht".


https://dgap.org/de/forschung/publikationen/den-naechsten-krieg-verhindern

Posted by: 600w | Nov 20 2023 19:25 utc | 43

Patroklos | Nov 20 2023 19:03 utc | 42

Milei...? At the moment the only thing solid is he has stated his US centric policies.

My thought is that it must be looked at in the global picture - a period of great turbulence that comes with historical change of era.
Prior to the Russian SMO, the Chinese economy was the greatest threat to US/anglo world dominance. Now, it is the emergence of BRICS, of the various alternative world organization and dedollarization that appear to be the greatest threat to US/anglo dominance.

I assume the US is looking at a much wider hybrid war than it had envisaged and has turned its attention to dedollarization and BRICS ec as the main threat to be defeated. I think Argentina should be seen in that light.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 20 2023 19:26 utc | 44

@ Patroklos | Nov 20 2023 19:03 utc | 42

there is some discussion on the week in review thread... also - roger boyd wrote an article last night you might enjoy reading..

https://rogerboyd.substack.com/p/argentinas-new-president-milei-sticks

Posted by: james | Nov 20 2023 19:29 utc | 45

Frederick Hodges must be one of those commentators who believe Russia is out to recreate the Soviet Union and that annexing Ukraine is the first step. At the same time he must be of the belief that Ukraine is only defending itself against Russian conquest, and trying to cut any ties it might still have with Russian society and culture.

Once you try looking at the world through Hodges's deluded viewpoint, then the contradictions between what he believes Ukraine should be doing (and what Western advisors should be telling Kiev) and what he thinks Russia is trying to do, fade away.

For people like Hodges, success for Ukraine will come when that nation, in whatever form, is part of NATO.

Posted by: Refinnejenna | Nov 20 2023 19:54 utc | 46

Patroklos@42
My immediate reaction- that of an unlearned barfly on this matter- is that this demonstrates the weakness, intellectually, politically of the 'left' which in The Argentine (!) seems to be dominated by post Peronist elements.

The situation there, is, as Roger Boyd has indicated, rather simple. Successive neo-liberal regimes, and military dictatorships following Washington's diktats, have ruined the economy of what was once one of the richest countries in the world. They have done so by the simple expedient of exporting capital so that it should never fall into the hands of any Argentinians. The country's wealth has been exploited and funnelled out into The City-Wall Street axis.

This inevitably produces crises social and economic which in turn lead (when they don't lead to the election of the likes of Millei or the return of military rule) to the enthusiastic election of very mildly left, almost socialist governments composed of parties so thoroughly traumatised and intimidated by imperialism's comprador agents that they hardly dare to introduce anything that amounts to reform. They know that if they do they will be thrown out of office, tortured and finally thrown into the antarctic waters from US supplied helicopters.

The last government inherited an economic crisis and a massive debt so odious that it could be smelled in Africa- instead of repudiating or renegotiating the debt the government attempted to pay it. Not being able to tax the capitalists, who had shared in the debt's profits, they were left with the necessity (in their view) of taxing the populace, cutting services, lowering living standards and diminishing the value of locally held savings.

Small wonder that, even with the prospect of libertarian lunacy staring them in the face, the peole could not raise the enthusiasm needed to vote for more of the same, on the grounds that the alternative was worse.
Needless to say the neo-Peronist reform party nominated its most conservative leader to run in the election.
I'd be interested to learn what the turn out was.

Panning out, from the country itself, what has happened highlights a real weakness in the BRICs strategy: what Argentina needs is a socialist revolution of some kind, which requires a mass movement, but BRICS is neutral on such questions, pretending that it matters little whether a country's government is neo-liberal or not. While BRICS stands aside the Empire will dive right in and, as a first move, will refresh its control over the Officer Corps. Israel will do what it did in Colombia and update the repressive machinery. And then a fullthroated attack on the working class- so easily replaceable- will take place.

Look what has happened at the other end of the continent in El Salvador where imperialism is in full command, again, thanks to the election of a tarted up libertarian demagogue. Then look at Greece where Syriza is now led by a guy who makes the Manchurian candidate look like the kid you used to walk to school with.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 20 2023 19:55 utc | 47

An example.
Bruce Springsteen doesn't like or appreciate country music.

How telling is it that he has never asked to appear in the Grand Ol Oprey.

It is a way of stating that an inaction can also support a position.

Posted by: BroncoBilly | Nov 20 2023 16:10 utc | 13

He may or may not like country, but he sure seems to like Western

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

Posted by: UpToEleven | Nov 20 2023 20:10 utc | 48

Millei Says Israel and the USA are models to emulate

Posted by: Exile | Nov 20 2023 20:15 utc | 49

She’elensky of course is Lady MacBeth - the blood will never wash of her hand.

Posted by: DunGroanin | Nov 20 2023 16:22 utc | 15

"Out, out damned spot"!

Posted by: canuck | Nov 20 2023 20:18 utc | 50

UKRAINIAN PRISONERS OF SMO/WAR

https://dzen.ru/a/ZUJENHTZG2Xcp2bH

The number of Ukrainian prisoners of war is estimated differently by various sources.

According to Western military experts, this is 20-25 thousand.

Others believe that about 18 thousand captured soldiers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine are held in prisons and colonies of the DPR and the Russian Federation.

In any case, this is a huge number. During the Ukrainian offensive, more than a thousand more soldiers were captured.

What do the prisoners tell us, and what is their fate in the future, why are they divided into categories, and will they be able to redeem themselves with blood?
With each passing day, the questions of what to do with them next will become more acute.

"Cover us, they're finishing us off"
Mikhail Bondarenko, who surrendered to the Russian army, said that he witnessed the Ukrainian Armed Forces finishing off their wounded.

According to him, the neighboring unit, having learned that there were many wounded in the dugout at the position, specially covered this dugout with mines so that everyone would die.

In the Zaporizhia direction, where fierce fighting is currently underway, soldiers of the Armed Forces of Ukraine are increasingly coming to the Russian fighters via open communication and asking them to stop shelling and give them a corridor.

They beg for protection from nationalists who shoot in the back of those who surrender. And then our cover groups are sent to support the Ukrainian servicemen...

Posted by: MD | Nov 20 2023 20:21 utc | 51

“On the ground” realities matter not…
The political class needs to continue the money laundering at least another year or so through all the campaigns ect…

We should start a bar “pool” on the amount that will be passed ( a Congressional Christmas Present to itself??)

I’m going to go with : 46 Billion 2-year package…
After all, we need to support Ukraine lest Russia attack NATO next..

Posted by: Trubind1 | Nov 20 2023 20:26 utc | 52

Perhaps something to do with judo philosophy. Always using an attack to advantage.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 20 2023 17:46 utc | 31


Judo is easy when your opponent only knows a couple of moves and uses them over and over again. I think Putin has known well in advance exactly what move the west would try next and planned for them as early as 2008. Since 2014 he has been forcing the west's actions. Putin has designed a campaign to end US hegemony. It's working. The actions that lead up to this were purposeful, each preparing conditions for the next. Putin didn't get fooled at Minsk, the west did. Putin defeated their plan to embroil Russia in a forever war on their own doorstep. The SMO was designed from the beginning to be a long war, because Ukraine is just a battlefield, and the strategic action is taking place in the global economy via BRICS and diplomacy. An instant surrender by Kiev would have made the Battle of BRICS that much harder, because the west would much more room to maneuver if active hostilities in Ukraine were halted.

I believe we've been watching an episode in which Putin has maneuvered his very predictable enemies into doing exactly what he wants so he can destroy them. Western leaders have been following his script. There's no sign they are trying to stop.

Posted by: Honzo | Nov 20 2023 20:30 utc | 53

I have no reason not to believe this tragic story however to then go further and claim that refusing to rent to injured vets is a common Ukrainian thing stinks of propaganda.

Regimes are fair game but you find empathy, kindness and generosity all over the world.

Posted by: HB_Norica | Nov 20 2023 18:57 utc | 41

You may find empathy and kindness in the community, or you may not it's not guaranteed. Remember narratives and who they serve.

As for regimes and treatment of Veterans, it can be similar. If one is lucky you won't get an ambitious careerist looking to score brownie points based on how little he / she approved for Veterans benefits.

Then there's the odd ideologue who thinks it's his duty to save public money. But I can tell you this, if you aren't lucky you can find yourself, and perhaps your family if you have one, beggared pretty quick.

When one challenges wrong headed decisions, the 'regime' will quickly go into bureaucratic maze mode which is an eternal loop that can only be broken by political intervention, successful and costly legal action or years of pounding on them until those who made the original decisions have long since passed into retirement or left this earth.

Or you might be dead and forgotten by the time all that comes to pass.

Just saying.

Posted by: bubbles | Nov 20 2023 20:32 utc | 54

“Millei Says Israel and the USA are models to emulate”

RE: Posted by: Exile | Nov 20 2023 20:15 utc | 49

No idea where US CIA dug this mascot out from, but obviously have no Argentine clue about a thing… his “economic shock therapy” and such that he blurbs out as well as the rest of his “Western” ideals, forget where he is, forgets his “manners”…

8 months tops b4 found in ditch.

Posted by: Trubind1 | Nov 20 2023 20:33 utc | 55

Interesting news from Germany, the constitutional court declared the budgeting gimmics illegal that were used to fund Ukraine, the replacement arms purchases for the Bundeswehr and some funds allocated to cap the energy price.

Germany went from promising to subsidize the energy intensive industries to discussing a 60 billion EUR cut to social security in a day.
The court also prohibited the approach of tacking multi year "Sondervermögen" (emergency funds) to the budget which have to be funded by debt. Germany has the "Schuldenbremse" (debt ceiling) enshrined in the constitution, it will be really hard to proclaim Ukraine a national eemrgency.

Forget spending 4% of GDP on the military or picking up the tab for this conflict..

Posted by: SOS | Nov 20 2023 20:35 utc | 56

MORE MEDIA SCHIZOPHRENIA ON RUSSIAN MISSILES


18 November 2023 by Larry Johnson

"The New York Times reporters still don’t get it — Russia, unlike the United States, is an industrial power and has the technical skills and material resources needed to produce the weapons Russia needs."

Russian Missile production up

Washing machine production seems to have sharply plummeted however, ....... for some strange reason

Posted by: UpToEleven | Nov 20 2023 20:38 utc | 57

http://smoothiex12.blogspot.com/2023/11/typical.html

I am not surprised, haven't been for a long while. I am talking about this:

"Директор Службы внешней разведки Российской Федерации Сергей Нарышкин заявил, что Запад требует от режима Зеленского, не считаясь с потерями, продемонстрировать мировому сообществу невозможность победы России в украинском конфликте", — говорится в релизе. По данным разведки, США и Великобритания рекомендуют руководству Украины снизить до 17 лет и повысить до 70 лет призывной возраст, а также проводить дополнительную мобилизацию женщин. В СВР отметили, что министр обороны страны Рустем Умеров предложил Верховной раде изучить возможность понижения минимального возраста для призыва в армию.

Translation: “The Director of the Foreign Intelligence Service of the Russian Federation, Sergei Naryshkin, said that the West demands that the Zelensky regime, regardless of losses, demonstrate to the world community the impossibility of Russia’s victory in the Ukrainian conflict,” the release says. According to intelligence data, the United States and Great Britain recommend that the Ukrainian leadership reduce the draft age to 17 and raise it to 70, as well as carry out additional mobilization of women. The SVR noted that the country's Minister of Defense Rustem Umerov proposed to the Verkhovna Rada to study the possibility of lowering the minimum age for conscription into the army.

This is everything one needs to know about Pentagon and their colleagues from London. Basically, desperately hiding behind backs of women and 17 year old kids. Well, aging men too. So much for "reputation", right? Lord Austin is in 404 pledging (for public mostly) unending support for Nazis in Kiev, but it seems utter delusion is what drives Washington nowadays.

Posted by: chop | Nov 20 2023 20:40 utc | 58

the Empire will dive right in and, as a first move, will refresh its control over the Officer Corps. Israel will do what it did in Colombia and update the repressive machinery. And then a fullthroated attack on the working class- so easily replaceable- will take place

Patroklos@42

I see a lot of people make predictions based on the idea that anything short of instant and total victory for the axis of resistance, or world socialism, or whatever, just gives the imperialists, however defined, time to ramp up their depredations. But what are the US and Isreal, in your exmple, going to exert real control over these populations with? They can't even exert control over Gaza. They're broke, their economy is in shambles, and they're only going to get broker because their economy is still speeding downhill. That can't be stopped because 1) the internal contradictions, especially in the form of moribund late-stage global finance capitalism, continue to operate, regardless of the feelings of the officer corps in Argentina, Washington, or Tel Aviv; and 2) BRICS, BRI, SCO, etc, along with the war in Ukraine, the idiotic own-goal of westrn sanctions, and the overt military failure of US/NATO in Ukraine and US/Israel in Gaza, prevent the Empire from getting the resources to reverse the trend, or capturing the new markets that would delay the process.

Napoleon had a couple of relevant thoughts: Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake. And, Never do what your enemy wishes you to do. The Napoleons are all with resistance.

Posted by: Honzo | Nov 20 2023 20:42 utc | 59

the West demands that the Zelensky regime, regardless of losses, demonstrate to the world community the impossibility of Russia’s victory in the Ukrainian conflict

Posted by: chop | Nov 20 2023 20:40 utc | 59

narcissists.

and this is also why they wont back down and will continiue to escalate, no matter the human cost. after trashtalking russia/iran/korea/china, screeming from their lungs how the "western values" (to this day i havent seen any of those values displayed by the west) are for the good of the world, while any opposition is bad (nice concept of democracy btw), they simply cannot admit defeat.

the loss of face for those narcissists would be akin to a deathsentence.

Posted by: Justpassinby | Nov 20 2023 21:07 utc | 60

Posted by: whirlX | Nov 20 2023 18:50 utc | 40

Had similar thoughts, why would Africa suddenly become as important as for Scholz to pay a visit. Thanks for the geopolitika article and your comment. Germany is so broke...


Posted by: SOS | Nov 20 2023 20:35 utc | 57

(and not only that; add the ongoing, very painful deindustrialization toll aka death by a thousand cuts smugly dubbed "green economic wonder" (grünes Wirtschaftswunder) 🤡)

...that whoever follows miserable Scholz/Baerbock/Habeck will be begging in Moscow to be soft on the reparation demands for Germany's second failed Russlandfeldzug in a hundred years.

Posted by: Nervous German | Nov 20 2023 21:19 utc | 61

Can "escalation capacity" of the collective west somehow be measured or estimated?

Posted by: zorge | Nov 20 2023 21:19 utc | 62

Re: Posted by: chop | Nov 20 2023 20:40 utc | 59

I’m addition to your post:
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/other/ukraine-widens-its-mobilization-net-as-war-casualties-mount/ar-AA1kf75x

“The changes to Ukraine's conscription laws are expected to eliminate the possibility of avoiding being drafted by obtaining a second or third higher education or higher military education.

The list of persons who can be drafted would also be expanded to include those who served in the armed forces of other states before acquiring Ukrainian citizenship and those who were convicted of committing a criminal offense.

On November 19, Petr Gorbatenko the commander of the 1st Assault Battalion, 3rd Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, called for the military to be replenished with younger conscripts.”

More bodies must go with more $$…
As commanded by David Cameron & Lloyd Austin’s visit.

Posted by: Trubind1 | Nov 20 2023 21:27 utc | 63

@ Perhaps something to do with judo philosophy. Always using an attack to advantage.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 20 2023 17:46 utc | 31

Very astute comment.

Posted by: Don Firineach | Nov 20 2023 21:32 utc | 64

Honzo | Nov 20 2023 20:30 utc | 54

What you wrote has been my thoughts also from watching this since 2014. I think we are seeing something that is not often seen in history.

From where Russia was in 1999 to where it is now and still a little way to go. Hopefully Putin will see it through to the end which is the destruction of the US empire.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 20 2023 21:42 utc | 65

Can "escalation capacity" of the collective west somehow be measured or estimated?

Posted by: zorge | Nov 20 2023 21:19 utc | 63

The big problem of the West 'escalating ' war materiel is tricky. Certainly there is the technology but the bureaucracy, Western profit motive, and the huge debt make it difficult to gauge. IMO the escalation potential is minimal.

Russia, China do R and D at must faster rates than the West. And they don't financialize them as the West do. In the US the MIC milk the system by building prototypes for cost plus 15% (which really means the US govt. finances their R and D without any economic return) takes mountains of time (more $) and the end result is a hugely expensive gimmicky weapon that works well if not used too much (see F 35).

As well, Russia, China build out industrial capacity as they need it. In the US to expand production costs money (not to mention the labour shortage of talented workers) and this takes away from profits for the MIC so unless the US or Europe goes on a war footing which would kill their economies the escalation potential is minimal.

Germany, France, Germany are broke they can't help much. Canada is a basket case. Poland has thrown in the towel it seems. Hungary, Serbia don't want to be on the team but love the EU subsidies, they can't do much. The US already has 1.7 trillion dollar deficit if they raise defense spending to match demand (ie artillery shells for Ukraine who won't and can't pay) would put pressure on interest rates which will kill the economy.

Finally, the populace of the West will figure out that the govt. should be spending money (they don't have) on their own failing country and that is now happening.

Let's hope.

Posted by: canuck | Nov 20 2023 22:41 utc | 66

"Incompetence leads to a belief in climate nonsense, moral superiority and an even further disconnection from reality."

Posted by: Nervous German | Nov 20 2023 17:11 utc | 23
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

I don't disagree with you Nervous German; I would be nervous too. What the world needs now are component leaders who would study the facts and make decisions based on the best science. Not incompetent crack pot conspiracy theorist who actually doesn't know shit about climate change, or the corporate paid weasels, who know the facts but deny them anyway because the corporate money for propaganda is tied to corporate profits; after all, a guy has to make a living.

When those people come to power, our ass is grass, and our future is dark, and short.

Posted by: Ed | Nov 20 2023 22:45 utc | 67

"As long as the Ukrainian army attacks there is no need for the Russian military to take more territory. It simply demilitarizes whatever comes up its way."

It's hardly that one-sided. First of all Russia's withdrawals and inability to advance has meant that Ukrainians have been in range of and shelled everything from Donetsk to Belgorod and other towns inside Russia, including cross-border raids that resulted in the deaths of civilians. It is only now, after Ukraine wasted itself in Zaporozhye that the Russians have finally launched a major assault on Avdiivka will could push the Ukrainians away from Donetsk, and even this could looks to be several months away.

It also means Russia has lost it's foothold over the Dnepr which is a big deal. An amphibious assault to the western side of the black sea is inconceivable given the performance of the Black Sea fleet.

Thirdly, although Russia is not fighting for territory, it's withdrawals had the effect of greatly encouraging western nations to increase/continue donating funds and weapons to Ukraine, prolonging the war with all its unpleasant effects for both sides.

Posted by: abel | Nov 20 2023 22:51 utc | 68

Kinda OT. Completely flabbergasted. The best thing the US could do is pull ALL resources home and fix/build infrastructure. Use the fuckin acraft carriers to house homeless in San Fran or power new communities while that infrastructure is created. In short people before the profit/prophets. Instead we have quadruple down on policy that shows benefit for "enemies" only before the double down. Makes one wonder which side the west is on does it.

Posted by: Tannenhouser | Nov 20 2023 22:52 utc | 69

‘The war in Ukraine is currently in a rather quiet phase, mostly because of bad weather with heavy rain and snow.’ The front was very ‘quiet’ in the weeks preceding the 16th December ‘44. Ukraine’s reliance on drones, as stop-gap substitutes for the lack of artillery and air support, means they are vulnerable to any traditional armoured spearheads, and deception operations that might accompany them. The logistics, to support such an attack, would be difficult, but Russia has had weeks to prepare for the onset of this weather, which might include specialised, off-road transport platforms.

Certainly the weather will increase the likelihood of both sides attempting to take advantage of the temporary grounding of the ever-present drones, and I wouldn’t be surprised if infantry tactics return to traditional surprise assaults, With Hutier tactics attempted. I remember soldiers from The BAOR saying if the Soviets had attacked just before Christmas, NATO would have swiftly collapsed, and the Germans would have made little initial progress in Dec ‘44, if the weather had been kinder to the Allies.

Posted by: Milites | Nov 20 2023 23:09 utc | 70

"...But what are the US and Israel, in your example, going to exert real control over these populations with? They can't even exert control over Gaza..." Honzo@60

The answer to the first question is force. Which is what has been used to control Gaza for decades.
The brave action of the men who broke the siege is worthy of our applause but- as the current attacks on the people of Gaza- 15000 plus dead- show Israel, backed by the imperialists has an unbroken capacity to wipe out unarmed populations.
You are right to believe that Israel's policy of aggression genocide and ethnic cleansing will, in the end, lead to the end of Israel but be careful not to trivialise the suffering those policies have caused and are causing, by assuring us that the carnage they are causing is suicidal. The same might have been said about Hitler but that was not seen as a reason for waiting until the Third Reich collapsed from its internal contradictions.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 20 2023 23:15 utc | 71

The contradiction in Ben Hodges' own words are easy to explain: he really is not very bright.

No wonder he was groomed to take the top position in Europe.
He would have fitted right in with that ship of fools.

Posted by: Yeah, Right | Nov 20 2023 23:19 utc | 72

"...No idea where US CIA dug this mascot out from.."
trubindi.

I believe it was Goldman Sachs. And that he is a former Rock musician who worked in international banking.

Posted by: bevin | Nov 20 2023 23:19 utc | 73

Western leaders have been following his script. There's no sign they are trying to stop.

Posted by: Honzo | Nov 20 2023 20:30 utc | 54

################

It is truly genius to defeat an enemy by convincing him to defeat himself while believing that he is enjoying it until he realizes the trap, and it's too late to do anything about it.

Posted by: LoveDonbass | Nov 20 2023 23:25 utc | 74

Posted by: abel | Nov 20 2023 22:51 utc | 69

Russia wages an operation of attrition with minimal casualties on its side. It looks like it is difficult to understand for people used to hollywood movies where everything is settled in a couple of hours. Some people do not understand the difference between a military operation and a war. Nor that Russia respects rules.

The western countries are pushing the ukronazis to fight to the last Ukrainian. If Ukrainians do not revolt, so be it.

The bonus is that thanks to the sanctions, Russia becomes stronger, being self-sufficient, while the European countries are going down and down. "Unpleasant effects" for the western countries is even a bonus for Russia. Wondering how long it will last until they get bankrupted.

Now it is Russia which is creating reality. There is no such thing as "inability" for Russia. Only strawman fallacies.

Posted by: Naive | Nov 20 2023 23:37 utc | 75

Hold off popping the champagne just yet.

The hegemon is not done yet by a long shot. Talk is Armenia is transferring over 200 Tochka U OTR21s to Ukraine and is being pressured to also transfer its holding of Osa 9K35s.

Then there's Moldova.

While these will only prolong the inevitable, the potential to cause more harm and pain to Russians should not be maginalised.

Posted by: Suresh | Nov 20 2023 23:50 utc | 76

Not about the end state, but the quote below is an interesting tidbit about the prelude to all of this. I can’t speak for the veracity but I’ve followed DeNATOfication since March 22. He’s consistently critical of MoD and one of the fire Shoigu / Geramisov crowd.

Colonel General Rudskoy remains the main operational mind and the most gifted strategist of the General Staff.

Rudskoy was one of the first people to receive the plans for the AFU offensive in Donbass before the beginning of the SMO. These plans revealed an underestimation of the Russian grouping deployed in Crimea: the enemy considered it to be the smallest and incapable of conducting major offensive operations. Rudskoy noticed this and decided to act.

In the shortest possible time, as part of the strategic deployment, the grouping of Russian troops was significantly increased, while, to divert attention, the exercise "Allied Resolve" was launched in Belarus. From 10 to 20 February troops entered the territory of the country, deliberately creating the image that Russia would stick to the plan of a concentrated attack on Kiev. This was supported by the fact that from its Western allies in the line of the Russian SVR, the enemy received dosed disinformation about the choice of Kiev as the direction of the main strike, which was never the case. The completely audacious Gostomel operation forced the enemy to leave in Donbass only half of the number of its brigades preparing for an offensive.

The AFU will start regrouping only after 28 February, after the first round of negotiations and when the SMO starts taking the appearance of war.

https://t.me/denatofication/7035


Posted by: Lex | Nov 20 2023 23:50 utc | 77

Honzo | Nov 20 2023 20:30 utc | 54

What you wrote has been my thoughts also from watching this since 2014. I think we are seeing something that is not often seen in history.

From where Russia was in 1999 to where it is now and still a little way to go. Hopefully Putin will see it through to the end which is the destruction of the US empire.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Nov 20 2023 21:42 utc | 66

This type of resurgence is very rare. I do have an example. In the early 7th century Persia had the Byzantines down to their last stronghold, Constantinople. The Emperor, Heraclius, was about to move the capital to Carthage but Sergius !, Patriarch of the Orthodox church told Heraclius he could melt all the Church gold for the military effort.

Heraclius took the gold and sailed out to the western shores of the Black Sea and with the gold recruited Armenians (always great soldiers)to form his army.

Over a number of years Heraclius got all of the Persian/Sassasanid gains back.

A great turn around.

However, both the Persians and the Byzantines were exhausted. So the Arab armies of Muhammed swept them over them-over all of the persian realm and 60% of the Byzantine Empire.

Just as the Macedonians did after the Spartans and Athens exhausted their resources in the late 5th century BC wars.

The same could befall US/Russia if they weaken themselves so much , China could walk in-this process is named the Thucydides trap.

Posted by: canuck | Nov 21 2023 0:25 utc | 78

Posted by: HB_Norica | Nov 20 2023 18:57 utc | 41

>I have no reason not to believe this tragic story however to then go further and claim that refusing to rent to injured vets is a common Ukrainian thing stinks of propaganda. Regimes are fair game but you find empathy, kindness and generosity all over the world.

Selfishness is even more common all over the world, because it springs from nature. Animals care for their own young, whereas "empathy, kindness and generosity" for non blood relatives is mostly a human thing, based on human ability to build large societies and remember and reward/punish behavior from the distant past.

Discrimination against returning soldiers, whether healthy or injured, is also occurring in Moscow and Petersburg, same as in Kyiv. Soldiers, especially frontline infantry, are seen by the big city elite as possible dehumanized monsters, psychotics and/or drunk/drugged violent trouble makers. There is a Russian proverb: "don't make fun of D students (двоечники), they are our future soldiers". By contrast, in the small towns both of Russia and Ukraine, soldiers are regarded as heroes.

Personally, I think the big city elite are correct. Anyone volunteering in Ukraine for this war is clearly insane and anyone volunteering in Russia is probably from desperate poverty or has violent impulses or otherwise primitive mentality. Maybe exception for those in technical jobs. I certainly would want nothing to do with ordinary infantry soldiers from either country. Definitely wouldn't want them living next to me.

(In the USA, risks of military service are small compared to benefits, especially Air Force or highly technical jobs in any military branch, so enlisted soldiers probably better than average compared to civilians. Probably true in Europe as well.)

This brings up the issue that there will likely be repudiation of Ukrainian language in parts of Ukraine after the war, along with repudiation of Ukrainian soldiers, and repudiation will be strongest in big cities. I have previously suggested that path of least resistance is to make oblasts each into disputed independent states (like Transdnistria and Abkhazia), versus trying to absorb them immediately into Russia. If so, Ukrainian language will probably become a laughing stock in those oblasts, along with Zelensky and everyone and everything else prominently associated with the war.

Posted by: anonposter | Nov 21 2023 0:34 utc | 79

I've been reading that the Ukraine is scrounging up women and kids and the elderly to serve as cannon fodder as the operation dwindles down. Guess they have to keep the killing going as long as possible, even though any idea of winning is long gone. I wonder how the soldiers feel about being among the last to face death for a lost cause. It's absolute insanity. https://folkpotpourri.com/eulogy-for-the-fallen-soldier/ - a thought for the poor souls out there.

Posted by: Ozark Grandpa | Nov 21 2023 1:25 utc | 80

Patroklos @ 42, Bevin @ 47, Exile @ 49, Trubindi @ 56:

Bevin provided the history but not a possible future. Let me try.

I'd want to know if President-elect Javier Milei has the support of the armed forces.

Say what you like about Argentina's armed forces in the past, when they probably were hotbeds of extreme fascism and harboured more than a few runaway German Nazis who taught their Argentine students how to torture people, but the days of Jorge Rafael Videla may be long past and the armed forces may have changed their culture and politics.

Suppose Milei carries out what he has threatened to do - completely privatise education from university level right down to kindergarten and preschool levels, abolish universal health care, remove laws allowing abortion and same-sex marriage, and return Argentina to a state that might even horrify long-time Francoist supporters in Spain - and on top of that announce that Argentina is going to send forces to assist Satanyahu in his annihilation of Gaza and the West Bank, and then go on to invade southern Lebanon to grab the Litani River and Bekaa Valley.

Will the armed forces of Argentina stand for that? Or will Milei and his equally odious vice-president Victoria Villarruel be signing their death warrants as leaders and politicians?

Milei’s denialism of the dictatorship fails to garner support in Argentine barracks (Federico Rivas Molina / El Pais, 16 November 2023)

The current military, trained under democracy, has distanced itself from the rhetoric promoted by the far-right presidential candidate and his running mate Victoria Villarruel

Javier Milei, the presidential candidate of Argentina’s ultra-right wing, has turned the consensus that has kept Argentina’s democracy afloat for 40 years on its head. He intends to end public education and health, defund universities, and opposes abortion and egalitarian marriage laws. Part of this “cultural war,” as he terms it, involves a condescending re-reading of the country’s last military dictatorship (1976-1983) and state terrorism. At the forefront of this denialism is Milei’s vice-presidential candidate, Victoria Villarruel, the granddaughter, daughter and niece of military personnel who has campaigned for what she calls a “complete memory” that includes the victims of guerrilla actions against the dictatorship and the shelving cases for crimes against humanity that are still open in Argentina. Her discourse, however, has not gained the backing she anticipated in the barracks. The new generations of military personnel, some of them born in democracy and all of them educated in it, consider that putting the issue of illegal repression on the agenda goes against years of efforts to clean up their image.

The Armed Forces controlled Argentine politics for more than 50 years. In 1930, with the first coup d’état, it initiated a long series of attempts to repress first the Radical Civic Union (UCR), and then, from 1955 onwards, Peronism. By the time power was handed over in 1983, the military had forcibly removed five democratic governments from the Casa Rosada, not counting changes of command within the presidential palace. The president of the transition, the radical Raúl Alfonsín, tried the dictatorship’s leaders in 1985. In 1991, a Peronist, Carlos Menem, pardoned them. However, under Menem, a process of de-financing the Armed Forces and the withdrawal of troops to the barracks also began. Today, the Argentine military wants nothing to do with politics. And the democratic consensus around “Never Again” neutralized any attempt to rewrite history or politically glorify state terrorism. Until now.


When Milei was questioned about the dictatorship during the first presidential candidates’ debate, he repeated the words of Admiral Emilio Massera during the trial of the leaders of the military junta. He said that in the 1970s there was “a war” in which “excesses” were committed, but never an illegal systematic plan of extermination. He was the first presidential aspirant who dared to say as much, and the first who did not lose votes as a result. Villarruel goes further still. She intends to put an end to the trials for crimes against humanity, to turn the Museum and Site of Memory that stands on the location of the largest detention and torture center of the dictatorship, the ESMA, into a place for the enjoyment “of all Argentine people” and to purge the pension program received by the victims. Villarruel also denies that the number of disappeared people under the dictatorship was 30,000, as human rights organizations claim, but “only” the 8,961 recorded by the Truth Commission set up by Alfonsín at the beginning of his administration.

Villarruel’s discourse resonates among retired military officers, who held positions during the dictatorship and many of whom were convicted of crimes or have open proceedings against them for crimes against humanity. But not among current officers, trained in democracy. “We are another generation and we are upset,” says a navy source on condition of anonymity, as military personnel are prevented by regulation from expressing any political opinion. “Those from that era [the dictatorship] have already paid, they were convicted. Why return to a discourse that continues to work against you after 40 years?”

The same question is asked by Argentine political scientist Victoria Murillo, director of the Institute of Latin American Studies at Columbia University. “Parties like [Marine Le Pen’s] National Rally in France initially sought to influence the public policy agenda. Once the public policy agenda changes, it is easier for them to accumulate votes. When an issue becomes normal, the extreme party becomes less extreme,” she explains.

Villarruel, in fact, has crossed several red lines, such as proposing that the Argentine Armed Forces carry out internal security tasks on a par with the police or the gendarmerie. Today, they are forbidden from doing so by an Alfonsín-era law that guaranteed the submission of the military to civilian power. “The Armed Forces, after the dictatorship, do not want to get into that game, which made us lose credibility, funds, properties”, says the same navy source. The government also considers that the military does not want to get involved in the fight against drug trafficking or common crime. “There is a lot of rejuvenation, with batches of young professionals. Nobody wants to get involved in national security issues, because they consider it a problem and know they are not prepared for it,” says an official source familiar with the sector. For Villarruel, the reluctance makes sense, because in the cases in which the army has been involved in internal security “corruption has increased.”

“And who are the military officers who publicly support Villarruel? They are early retirees who do not collect retirement benefits, individual cases with little internal ascendancy,” say government sources. This reticence, however, did not prevent many of them from voting, eventually, for Milei. Villarruel has promised this sector of the military a significant increase in the budget if she and Milei reach the Casa Rosada. It remains to be seen if this will be enough to gain support in the barracks.

If the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo and the Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo are outlawed by the new Milei government, that just might tip the Argentine public and the armed forces into a revolt. Would Villarruel be so cruel and so stupid to do that? My guess is that she is.

Posted by: Refinnejenna | Nov 21 2023 1:47 utc | 81

@ bevin | Nov 20 2023 19:55 utc | 47 on Argentina and so on

.........what has happened highlights a real weakness in the BRICs strategy: what Argentina needs is a socialist revolution of some kind, which requires a mass movement, but BRICS is neutral on such questions, pretending that it matters little whether a country's government is neo-liberal or not [or led by some extreme Theocratic High Priest King or Prince and not by the Peopl's will].

While BRICS stands aside [all noble and speaks poetically] the Empire will dive right in and, as a first move, will refresh its control over the Officer Corps [Oligarchs and Bureaucrats.] Israel will do what it did in Colombia and update the repressive machinery. And then a full throated attack on the working class - so easily replaceable- will take place.

Look what has happened at the other end of the continent [first in Venezuela, and] in El Salvador where imperialism is in full command, again, thanks to the election of a tarted up Libertarian (Neoliberal) demagogue. Then look at Greece where Syriza is now led by a guy who makes the Manchurian candidate look like the kid you used to walk to school with.

So very very true. Yes!

Look around Africa, anywhere. Pakistan. The Philippines. The Pacific. Thailand. Burma. Armenia. Egypt. Morocco. The Sahel. Sudan. Brazil. Even Canada. All of central America. What was done to Bolivia post the election of an indigenous President. Same shit different day, different decade.

"Today President (Xi/Putin) gave a speech on the subject of ..... while visiting ..... calling for .....and blaming the United States for everything."

It's better than nothing. Sure, but only marginally.

The Empire only responds to outright power being laid against it. Nothing else suffices.

Posted by: Lavrov's Dog | Nov 21 2023 2:07 utc | 82

"Where is the logic in that?"

How charming that you still expect logic.

Posted by: Biswapriya Purkayast | Nov 21 2023 2:13 utc | 83

It seems not only Poland, but now Slovakia is effectively blockading Ukraine, by delaying customs action for passing Ukrainian trucks, causing massive traffic jams on the border. Additionally they refuse to allow transit for Ukrainian products.

Additionally, some Ukrainian truck drivers had thrown rocks on Polish trucks and set one on fire. So seems the situation is escalating.

Needless to say, this might also be a US issued order for Poland to put pressure on Ukraine economy.

Posted by: unimperator | Nov 21 2023 2:14 utc | 84

Some videos for today.

Precise Russian drone strike destroys enemy infantry group on the Zaporozhye front:
https://rutube.ru/video/64b83ca6b6df7b093980d93fd410c306/

Russian Ka-52 attack helicopter fires on enemy position near Krasny Liman:
https://rutube.ru/video/46e768eb8ef5d870cbaee0871b0758be/

Russian Grad launcher fires on enemy position near the DPR’s Artemovsk:
https://rutube.ru/video/a0e133f6da9e9c161f8b7020f6849cbd/

Russian artillery destroys enemy position near Belogorovka:
https://rutube.ru/video/56064d1af4129ec59841a2a8fc5cad4b/

Posted by: Nate | Nov 21 2023 2:14 utc | 85

Damn sorry about the bold ...

@ bevin | Nov 20 2023 19:55 utc | 47 on Argentina and so on

.........what has happened highlights a real weakness in the BRICs strategy: what Argentina needs is a socialist revolution of some kind, which requires a mass movement, but BRICS is neutral on such questions, pretending that it matters little whether a country's government is neo-liberal or not [or led by some extreme Theocratic High Priest King or Prince and not by the People's will - so long as it's Sovereign.]

While BRICS stands aside [and speaks poetically] the Empire will dive right in and, as a first move, will refresh its control over the Officer Corps [Oligarchs and Bureaucrats.] Israel will do what it did in Colombia and update the repressive machinery. And then a full throated attack on the working class - so easily replaceable - will take place.

Look what has happened at the other end of the continent [first in Venezuela destroyed by the US, and] in El Salvador where imperialism is in full command, again, thanks to the election of a tarted up Libertarian (Neoliberal) demagogue. Then look at Greece where Syriza is now led by a guy who makes the Manchurian candidate look like the kid you used to walk to school with. [The old establishment oligarch political families are back in control of politics once again - Varofakis and real Democracy be dammed.]

So very very true. Yes! That's the script set on 'Replay'.

Look around Africa, anywhere. Pakistan. The Philippines. The Pacific. Thailand. Burma. Armenia. Egypt. Morocco. The Sahel. Sudan. Brazil. Even Canada. All of central America. What was done to Bolivia post the election of an indigenous President. Same shit different day, different decade.

"Today President (Xi/Putin) gave a speech on the subject of ..... while visiting ..... calling for .....and blaming the United States for ....."

It's better than nothing. Sure. But only marginally.

The Empire only responds to outright power being laid against it. Nothing else suffices.

Posted by: Lavrov's Dog | Nov 21 2023 2:16 utc | 86

@Ozark Grandpa 81:

No idea what the Ukraganda is telling the Ukrainian civilian population. They may still imagine that they're just one breakthrough from victory.

I noticed that the Canazidastani propagandist Gwynne Dyer, who prophesied a month ago that Ukranazistan would slowly but surely starve Russia into defeat in Crimea, later wrote another article admitting the Ukranazi counteroffensive was a complete failure. That latter article has quietly disappeared from the web while the former still exists.

Posted by: Biswapriya Purkayast | Nov 21 2023 2:18 utc | 87

@Refinnejenna 82:

Remember that Milei won a runoff election, meaning a majority of the people approve his platform, which means that they will support him. It is a bit different from say India where only some 40% of those who voted in 2019 voted for Modi.

Posted by: Biswapriya Purkayast | Nov 21 2023 2:23 utc | 88

Boys and girls, you do realize that the title of this post is “A Look At Others' Notes On Ukraine,” right? It’s about the Ukraine. Other issues, such as Argentine, should be discussed in the latest open thread (except Palestine, which should be discussed in the latest Palestine open thread). The blog’s author has asked you to keep your comments on topic many, many times. Is it so hard to understand?

Posted by: S | Nov 21 2023 2:47 utc | 89

@Biswapriya Purkayast #88

"That latter article has quietly disappeared from the web"

Perhaps this one "Ukraine: the big push fails"?

Behind a paywall, but available here: https://archive.ph/JBlJH

Final line: " A second presidential term for Donald Trump would confound everybody’s calculations, but the odds still favour Ukraine."

Posted by: Billb | Nov 21 2023 2:59 utc | 90

I think Russia seeks exactly what it always stated, the already annexed territories and a demilitarized Ukraine with no possibility of joining NATO. The constant suggestions about Kherson, Odessa and Kiev are simply negotiation strategy, giving them a point to step back from, and giving the US a perceived win.

That the West constantly alludes to a future Ukraine in NATO is either their overplay to back away from or some delusion it would ever be allowed. Seems there will come a time when Zelensky either is removed or is forced to negotiate, depends in what state he wishes to finally exit Ukraine. Agree too that we are still a quite a way from this point, sadly the carnage will continue, Zelensky and his neocon handlers of course should be facing war crimes, but can't see that ever happening.

Posted by: Organic | Nov 21 2023 3:00 utc | 91

"...I believe it was Goldman Sachs. And that he is a former Rock musician who worked in international banking." bevin@74
Wrong! It was the HSBC. I ought to have remembered.
This old aricle is as good as anything I've seen which isn't saying much but...
https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2023/08/argentina-just-took-a-step-closer-to-dollarising-its-economy-and-away-from-the-brics.html

Posted by: bevin | Nov 21 2023 3:01 utc | 92

Where is the logic in that?

Posted by b on November 20, 2023 at 15:05 UTC | Permalink

I think the logic is that the high-tech billionaires and the MIC managers want more money flowing in their R&D programs. For that purpose they need to paint the RAF as not so effective (no large territorial gains) and the UAF as good fighters who could use more sophisticated weapons (such as drones remote controlled by kids at school) to push back the Russians East. This is a response to Zazhulny's latest piece in the Econonist.

They are producing a blockbuster movie to attract interest from the Congress. Nothing new really. They have been effectice in the past (the F35) at promoting their dreams and getting funding.

Posted by: Richard L | Nov 21 2023 3:09 utc | 93

Canuck 79

It just doesn't look like Russia is exhausting itself.

Rather, Russia seems to be renewing itself.

Posted by: Jane | Nov 21 2023 3:14 utc | 94

It appears to me that the US administration is trying to prevent recognition of the hopelessness of Ukraine - meaning that the US has promoted another war which wasted a lot of money, humiliated theUS and got a lot of people killed. So they refuse to allow recognition of defeat. They will have to drag it out a while yet, during which time rational observers might expect that humiliation will only increase and may result in complete collapse. They are dangerous when they are humiliated which unfortunately is not infrequent. This is also why they will not participate in negotiations - dont want Russia dictating terms of surrender. Thus negotiations are impossible, because what is point of negotiating with Ukraine?

Posted by: jared | Nov 21 2023 3:31 utc | 95

Arestovich: Either Ukraine is Russia or Russia is Ukraine's

Aleksey Arestovich believes the war will not end until one or the other is destroyed:

The Russian Federation is the only country whose historical center (according to their own statements) lies outside its borders.

If they call themselves Russia (Rus in Greek) and claim the heritage of Kievan Rus, then in their eyes we are Russians who were deceived by the West and some romantics.

In [Putin’s] picture of the world, he wants to return “historical lands”, including Kyiv, to Moscow’s control, and put an end to the question “who is Rus'”?

If Rus' is us, then we are the heirs of one of the largest and greatest states in Europe, and the modern Russian Federation is a side branch of development that has stolen our history.

Until this issue is resolved, the reasons for wars will not go away.

In this framework, our entry to the borders of 1991 will not end the war, much less a return to February 23, 2022


https://t.me/geromanat/14033

Posted by: Down South | Nov 21 2023 4:10 utc | 96

It seems that the Ukrainian authorities have figured out how to “kill two birds with one stone”: on the one hand, recruit people to the front, and on the other, reduce the number of disabled people who have become unnecessary people in their own country.

Thus, people's deputy Maryana Bezuglaya said that the Rada is preparing for registration a bill proposing to deprive not only students receiving second and third higher education of a deferment from mobilization, but also spouses of disabled people and their relatives not of the first degree.

In fact, they want to send people to the front who care for and inspect relatives with disabilities. If previously the right to a deferment was given to persons who were constantly caring for their wife’s (spouse’s) parents, now the circle will narrow - persons who care only for THEIR parents will have the right to a deferment. Moreover, if those liable for military service who have a wife (spouse) are persons with group III disabilities, then they also lose the right to a deferment.

The circle of persons entitled to deferred care for a person with disability groups I and II or a person who, according to the MSEC, needs constant care, will also be reduced to family members of the first degree of kinship (parents and in-laws of the husband/wife, children, children of the spouse/ wives, including adopted ones).

And we remind you that in Ukraine today the number of people with disabilities has already exceeded 3 million. And one should not hope that the Ukrainian authorities, having taken away those who care for and inspect them from disabled people, will take on all this work -

Already, people with disabilities are not being paid benefits under various pretexts, and in the near future they will be deprived of benefits altogether, as their status will be reviewed.


https://t.me/skeptik_21/7733
Our source reports that there will be increased mobilization - everyone on Bankova knew this, but as usual they lied to people. Everyone will be dragged into war in 2024-25 (both women and youth).

According to the developed plan of the Office of the President, the shortage of heavy weapons, artillery and aviation will be replaced by the number of infantry.

They are already saving ammunition and equipment, replacing the shortage of weapons with infantry. Because of this, losses are growing, but they stopped paying attention to them back in 2022.

Everyone who received deferments and cannot pay the repeated “payment” will go to war. It was not for nothing that the authorities were cowardly at the military registration and enlistment offices and ostentatiously removed “their own” sixes.

The Ukrainian Armed Forces have a growing shortage of manpower, and the reason for this is the failed Zee offensive and the Bakhmutov meat grinder.

It won't get any better...


https://t.me/legitimniy/16745

Posted by: Down South | Nov 21 2023 4:13 utc | 97

⚡️🇷🇺🇺🇦⚔️ Special Operation, 20 Nov 2023, Main; pub. 19:52⚡️

▪️ Russian troops have achieved an advantage during the special operation by introducing innovations, particularly in the field of electronic warfare, Forbes has reported. It is noted that due to the use of the Field-21 electronic warfare system, the Ukrainian troops cannot use the US Excalibur shells, as they deviate from the course and fail to hit the target. The author of the article also noted the successful use of Lancet drones. According to him, these highly accurate and compact drones are difficult to detect and neutralise on an unpredictable flight path, which makes it difficult for the AFU to retaliate.

▪️ Pentagon chief Austin arrived in #Kiev, where he said that the #US will continue to support #Ukraine. As the Pentagon specified, Austin will discuss with the Ukrainian leadership the strengthening of strategic partnership, as well as providing the AFU with combat capabilities needed for the winter period.

▪️ Russian fighters were able to "land" the US-made RQ-20 PUMA drone, which the AFU used in the #Zaporozhye region to monitor roads used by civilian transport. The #US drone fell due to the impact of Russian electronic warfare systems and was picked up by Russian servicemen. Its onboard module with a video camera was found to be in working condition, which allowed the drone's footage to be viewed.

▪️ According to the Russian Ministry of Defence, the Ukrainian forces have lost about 340 militants in all directions over the day. Russian units destroyed two armoured vehicles and five howitzers.


https://t.me/sitreports/18337
⚡️🇷🇺🇺🇦⚔️ War Map and the Situation on the Fronts for the Evening of 20 November 2023; pub. 00:05⚡️

👍 The AFU has changed their tactics with regard to raids on bus stops in #Donetsk. Previously, the AFU used to launch artillery strikes against people waiting for transport. Today, however, in the Kirovsky district, the enemy used to do this by dropping a bomb from a UAV. Two civilians were seriously wounded.

⚔️ Situation on the Fronts over the past Day

🔹#Bakhmut (#Artyomovsk) Direction:

▪️ Near #Berkhovskoye Reservoir, fighting continues. Our fighters are advancing in the direction of #Bogdanovka. In #Kleshcheyevka, the Russian army continues to retake positions. #Andreyevka is in the grey zone, our fighters are entrenched near the village.

🔹#Donetsk Direction:

▪️ The Russian army continues to advance in the area of #Steponoye, as well as in the direction of #Novokalinovo and #Ocheretino. In addition, our fighters are attacking to the east and south of #Avdeyevka.
▪️ In #Maryinka no change, fighting is ongoing on the western outskirts and near #Novomikhaylovka.

🔹#Zaporozhye Direction:

▪️ In the #Orekhov section, our fighters counterattacked west of #Rabotino and from the direction of #Novoprokopovka.
▪️ On the #Vremyevka ledge, counter battles are taking place.


https://t.me/sitreports/18334

Posted by: Down South | Nov 21 2023 4:17 utc | 98

I agree that Hodges is being hypocritical. He says terrain is not the metric when discussing Ukrainian advances and says it is when discussing Russia.

I actually think terrain IS the key feature. No...not attrition. Attrition should convert into breaking down units to the extent that terrain can be taken. Until attrition has been demonstrated (by taking land), I don't buy it. Both sides tend to overestimate the casualties of the enemy and refuse to publish their own casualties.

I go by the one metric we can really see...terrain. And with this in mind, the "gonna take Odessa" types look silly as hell. It's a long long way to Odessa. Look on a map. Russia isn't even threatening Kherson!

So, I see stalemate as the best analysis. It requires substantial advantages in size and in air cover and surprise to overwhelm defenses. Defenses are inherently stronger than offenses on the modern battlefield. This is even more so given the terrain in Ukraine and the massive amounts of fortifications and mines.

Posted by: Anonymous | Nov 21 2023 4:26 utc | 99

b, can you offer preliminary thoughts about Milei's victory in Argentina? I am keen to hear your views and those of more learned barflies on this extraordinary event.

Posted by: Patroklos | Nov 20 2023 19:03 utc | 42

I hardly see what you can mean by extraordinary, especially after the Trump and Bolsonaro's elections.

Posted by: jean levant | Nov 21 2023 5:42 utc | 100

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