Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
December 22, 2023

The Fantasy Of Missile Defense In Ukraine

In October 2022 I mocked western media propaganda that was depicting Russia as unable to sustain the war:

Russia, Having 'Run Out Of Missiles', Launches Barrage On Ukraine

Back in March I had warned that Lies Do Not Win Wars. Here is another practical example.

After allegedly having 'run out of missiles' and, more importantly, patience, the leadership of the Russian Federation decided to de-electrify Ukrainian cities with a 'barrage of missile strikes'.

But first came the propaganda blubber: ...

There followed 25 headlines by western media which claimed that Russia was running out of missiles.

More recently we see frequent claims by the Ukrainian government that it shot down 43 of the 32 drones Russia launched that day as well as 5 out of 3 supersonic missiles.

Laughable nonsense.

But slowly, slowly the Ukrainians and media have turned to describing stuff more near to, but not yet, reality:

Russia has fired 7,400 missiles, 3,700 Shahed drones in war so far, Kyiv says - Reuters

Russia has launched about 7,400 missiles and 3,700 Shahed attack drones at targets in Ukraine during its 22-month-old invasion, Kyiv said on Thursday, illustrating the vast scale of Moscow's aerial assaults.

Ukrainian air defences were able to shoot down 1,600 of the missiles and 2,900 of the drones, air force spokesperson Yuriy Ihnat said in televised comments. "We are faced with an enormous aggressor, and we are fighting back," he said.

Shooting down drones, which are relatively slow and fly low, is not so difficult or expensive. One often only needs to have some machine guns in place on the path along which a drone is flying.

Shooting down missiles is something entirely different. Due to their flightpath and speed one needs expensive missile defense systems. The anti-missile missiles these systems fire come at a high price. One Patriot missile comes at about $2,000,000, more for newer ones. Routinely two are fired against any potential target.

If the Ukraine has really shot down 1,600 missiles, which I very much doubt, one can easily calculate the enormous costs of such an endeavor

There are reasons why Patriot missiles are only produced in the hundreds per year, not in the thousands.

No country in the world can sustain such an onslaught without running out of defenses or going bankrupt.

Several months ago a U.S. delivered Patriot system in Kiev came under attack. Set to automatic mode it fired (video) 32 missiles for no observable hits on the imaginary targets. Scott Ritter has said that the U.S. Marines are not allowed to use the automatic mode of their Patriot systems because that is known to fail. But the Ukrainians were not trained to fully handle the manual mode.

And now they are telling us that they shot down 1,600 missiles?

How probable is that?

Posted by b on December 22, 2023 at 12:53 UTC | Permalink

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There is the possibility that NATO has been secretly resupplying their stocks to hit Russia hard at the end of the Ukr mess thinking that Russia will be very low on weaponry.

I have no idea if that is true but it must have occurred to the Russians so I wouldn't mind betting that for every round they manufacture for Ukraine they have kept a couple back for contingencies.

Posted by: Peter B | Dec 22 2023 13:00 utc | 1

Lies do not win wars but Ukrainian lies (1) delay the inevitable defeat by fooling some that would give up if they knew the truth and (2) do bring in more Western treasure to the Ukrainians. As the end slowly approaches lies become less effective at (1) and (2) so a bit more truth emerges gradually.

Posted by: Johan Kaspar | Dec 22 2023 13:16 utc | 2

How timely it is that Japan's export restrictions have been relaxed!

Japan Relaxes Export Restrictions to Sell Patriot Missiles to U.S.

The policy change could shore up American supplies of the weapon, allowing Washington to send more to Ukraine to help in its war against Russia.

Japan will allow the sale of advanced air defense systems to the United States to help bolster American military stockpiles at a time when Washington is continuing to support Ukraine in its fight against the Russian invasion.

The move by Tokyo follows a change in Japan’s restrictions on the export of weapons, rules that have been in place for most of the post-World War II era. After a meeting of Japan’s National Security Council on Friday, Yoshimasa Hayashi, the chief cabinet secretary, told reporters that the country could now sell Patriot missiles made under license from American companies.

Former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe first relaxed some export restrictions in 2014, but the rules still prevented Japan from transferring lethal weapons to regions in conflict, and they limited sales of licensed equipment to parts rather than complete systems.

With the rule change, Japan can now sell American-designed Patriot missiles made in Japan to the U.S. government. The air defense systems are manufactured by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries under a license from the American manufacturers Raytheon and Lockheed Martin.

continues ==> https://www.nytimes.com/2023/12/22/world/asia/japan-export-patriot-missiles-us.html

Posted by: too scents | Dec 22 2023 13:28 utc | 3

The key problem in missile defense is that the attacker has the advantage of concentration and the defender has the burden of defending all potential targets. This means that a concentrated attack can usually saturate local defenses and achieve hits. Add to this problem the technological superiority of the Russian hypersonic missiles, which even the Patriot can’t intercept, plus the superior production rate of Russian missiles, and you have a grim picture for Ukraine. This war was lost the day it started, but U.S. arrogance and stupidity have prolonged it at the cost of the destruction of Ukraine.

Posted by: HH | Dec 22 2023 13:34 utc | 4

William Schryver elaborates, aptly entitling it 'Empty Quiver'

Posted by: Waymad | Dec 22 2023 13:34 utc | 5

A lot of the crowd here are wondering why Russia and China seem to be fighting with one arm behind their backs.

Economics are probably the reason, a lot of attrition can happen if the war is fought as an economic one.

First, don't lose. You have to win the war, not every battle.
As any computer gamer knows there has to be a balance of building bases, defensive structure, mobile assets. Keep the base secure.

Second, build your base. Few wars are won on day one or on the plan for day one. The more you build, the more you can build. NATO isn't getting it on this count at all. Drawing from stocks is not the same as building new systems. There also has to be a mix between many cheap systems and a few complex high cost ones.
NATO is suffering from "caskets coming home" syndome, the west can't bear losses, this has led to spiraling cost and complexity. NATO is locked into this model down to the entire production base, industrial stakeholders, design thinking, production lines. Just forcing attrition losses on NATO means that production will be overextended and the war chest drained.

Third, win the battles you can win.
Russia and China know that they could win ME or Ukraine in a week with enough effort but they would lose the day after that. You can rely on the US for a knee-jerk reaction so it's better to win slowly and consolidate the win instead of showing off. They know western politicians aren't thinking and responding but reacting. If they lose enough face anything will be done, suddenly herd mentality and momentum sets in.

Right now the West in it's arrogance and hubris doesn't get attrition. Russia does so they made sure that there is plenty of time to reduce western arms caches, even Poland toned down by now, Germany will be very busy salvaging the economy and barely surviving. UK will keep going under the illusion that they still play a role in the world. Good luck to that cold country once oil runs out and Russia stops selling Uranium.

About the AD economics, it's even worse than that.
Looking at the clobber lists a few hundred planes at 200m each, tanks at 2m each, millions of shells at 800-4000 each, drones at 2-10k each plus endless infrastructure are destroyed. I think we are at 5 patriot batteries at 1.2 billion each...

This is production value, replacement value in 2024ff will be at least three times that.

Every Patriot3 battery is 2bln, each Arleigh-Burke is 2bln, each PzH2000 18.5m excl ammo..

Infantry is harder to price, per soldier: two years at 50k wages, 50k in equipment, 100k medical cost WIA, lost lifetime income: 1m?

For Germany military budget is 78b, this will need to be doubled for at least 10 years to replace the losses. Direct cost is in the range of 780 billion Euro, that will be increaingly harder to justify.


Posted by: SOS | Dec 22 2023 13:36 utc | 6

WW2, the Brits sent the prince of wales cruiser against japanese naval air, without adequate air defence. They didnt understand the nature of naval war had forever changed…..i suspect the australians and canadians have no adequate defence against drones and missle attack, so they have bowed out of the red sea posse.

Posted by: James j | Dec 22 2023 13:41 utc | 7

This issue, missiles and missile defense has been there since WWII, and obvious too. The "Defense" bidness does not like it because they like making big expensive high-maintenance "platforms", with officers and lots of minions, just the things missiles are good and cheap for attacking. So here we are.

The Russians on the other hand, have seen the writing on the wall, and made their missiles unstoppable and their missile defenses about as good as can be done, and a lot of other things too.

I think it likely the Chinese and a lot of other people too can get the idea, and have done so.

Posted by: Bemildred | Dec 22 2023 13:45 utc | 8


@ Waymad | Dec 22 2023 13:34 utc | 5
William Schryver elaborates, aptly entitling it 'Empty Quiver'

Guess the army will want a "quiverfull" movement then?

Posted by: SOS | Dec 22 2023 13:57 utc | 9

Running short on Ukraine air defenses, U.S. looks to Japan> https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2023/12/19/us-japan-patriot-missiles-ukraine/

Japan Relaxes Export Restrictions to Sell Patriot Missiles to U.S.
https://www.nytimes.com/2023/12/22/world/asia/japan-export-patriot-missiles-us.html
With the rule change, Japan can now sell American-designed Patriot missiles made in Japan to the U.S. government. The air defense systems are manufactured by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries under a license from the American manufacturers Raytheon and Lockheed Martin.
“If we succeed in creating such a supply chain, then our potential adversaries would think, ‘Wow, the U.S., Japan, South Korea and Taiwan would have plenty of weapons and munitions and missiles to fight against them,’” said Narushige Michishita, a professor of international relations at the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies in Tokyo. “And they would be discouraged from attacking us in the first place.


A ridiculous display of Christmas fantasy and vain end-of-year wishes!


Posted by: Argos | Dec 22 2023 14:13 utc | 10

Well Ukraine or someone supporting them is firing SOMETHING because according to Newsweek:
Russia Just Lost Three Su-34 Bombers in One Day
https://www.newsweek.com/russia-lost-three-su-34-bombers-one-day-ukraine-air-force-1854931

Posted by: bored | Dec 22 2023 14:19 utc | 11

Now that all the fat and corrupt western politicians, especially
the Parliaments members, have entered their Christmas/ New Year
recess VVPutin has to unleash the dogs and take advantage of the
next 26 next days to create Ukronazis chaos , despair and destruction along the frontline and in the electrical, telephone, airport, train and road infrastructure.
Use these thousands of missiles saved for later during the last 4 months!
These 26 days will be crucial to show to the West that any later
consideration for additional Ukraine funding is pointless, that the Titanic is sinking.
It is now or never

Posted by: Zhukov | Dec 22 2023 14:20 utc | 12

There's a catch: according to the regulation there can be no exports to countries at war!!!

Japan weighs allowing Patriot missile transfers to aid Ukraine
https://asia.nikkei.com/Politics/Defense/Japan-weighs-allowing-Patriot-missile-transfers-to-aid-Ukraine

The Japanese government will update guidelines on defense exports as early as Friday, allowing shipments of missiles and other equipment made under license to countries where those patent holders are based. Currently, only components of licensed equipment can be sent to the U.S.

Japan will also allow recipient countries to transfer equipment to a third country with prior approval, except to those actively involved in an armed conflict, such as Ukraine and Israel.

While this would not allow Washington to directly send Kyiv Japanese-built Patriot missiles, it would give the U.S. more room to keep supplying Ukraine with American-made weapons.

Patriot missiles are currently being used by Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan, Mark Cancian, senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, said in an October report.

Posted by: Argos | Dec 22 2023 14:20 utc | 13

As is often and aptly said here: it's the empire of lies. 2024 will be the year all this bullshit we've suffered will be revealed for the world to see. Western imperialism has become totally unsustainable.

Good one here on potential Ukraine funding source:

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2023/12/22/zdsh-d22.html

"The assets of the Russian central bank held in foreign banks and international financial institutions were frozen almost immediately after the war began in February last year, sending a shock wave through the international financial system. At that point, and in discussion since, the actual seizure was thought to be a step too far.

Earlier this year the European Central Bank (ECB) cautioned against an EU proposal to use the assets and divert them to Ukraine, and said it had to be part of a global plan involving the G7 powers.

“We have to be careful because this could lead to reputational damage,” the ECB said, “there could be implications for the euro as a safe currency.”

In an internal note at the time, the ECB warned of the risks of undermining the “legal and economic foundations” of the international role of the euro. “The implications could be substantial,” it stated.

The risk is that other countries, such as China and Saudi Arabia, which stow some of their currency reserves in euros, would consider it unsafe."

Posted by: Ahenobarbus | Dec 22 2023 14:23 utc | 14

Does it really matter if Ukraine-NATO shot down a million Russian missiles, when Ukraine continues to lose and Russia is not running out of missiles?

Posted by: Steve | Dec 22 2023 14:40 utc | 15

Saw a good deal of discussion about Reisner on "b's" site recently. My view, Reisner's no fool. I put him in the same category as Kofman and Lee. Knows all about military matters so always sounds convincing when discussing them. This makes such people the most effective of information warriors.

Gave my own impression of him elsewhere a while ago. Non-military myself, and not pretending to be, I see him thus:-

Reisner was one of the first to grasp the approach the Russians adopted after the failure of the Istanbul talks.

In fact before that failure: full marks to the Russians for trying for a settlement but given the ferocity of the Western assault on their economy they must have know that the West was all in and would stay all in, So in fact the Russian approach was set before Istanbul and has remained consistent since.

Reisner got that. He didn’t get the first few weeks of the SMO but then nobody did. What must have been one of the most brilliant military operations of modern times, those first few weeks, passed him by entirely. But he understood that well before the so called “Surovikin Line” the Russians had settled down to a policy of attrition whilst keeping their own casualties to a minimum.

Attrition of course doesn’t work unless the enemy keeps shovelling troops against your lines to be attrited. For a long time the Russians could rely on that. The exigencies of American politics meant the Ukrainians had to be seen to be putting up a fight. Kiev politics worked to the same imperatives. So the shovelling continued to the present day. I recollect writing in way back protesting that the manner in which we were sacrificing Ukrainian troops was wrong. “b” on MOA wrote that what we were doing with our proxies was a “crime”. So it was. These were in the main courageous and resourceful soldiers. Time and time again they were thrown without compunction against a wall of steel to die for no military purpose whatsoever.

But now Reisner forgets his own lesson. The ludicrous firetrap of Rabotinino he pretends was a proper if ill-fated military operation. It was in no sense a responsibly constructed military operation. It was nonsense dreamed up by the table top exercise generals of NATO to keep the illusion of Ukrainian success going for that bit longer.

So too with Khrinky. Reisner pretends that that also was a realistic military operation. In his dreams. Three Marine brigades, some of the best Ukrainian troops, were mashed up in that PR offensive. As far as I know men are still being sent to die for nothing there. Probably as a result of the Milley/Cavoli/Radakin conference where Zaluzhnyi was given his lunatic instructions.

Martyanov fulminates about the NATO amateur night generals who haven’t the faintest idea how to plan a viable operation. He’s right of course but I believe there’s more to it than that. People like Milley and Cavoli gave up any pretence of being professional soldiers long since. They cheerfully sacrifice uncountable numbers of Ukrainian PBI merely to run this hopeless war down in a way that doesn’t leave the politicians with too much egg on their faces.

Does Reisner get that? Maybe but if so he’s not saying. I used to spend a little time watching this elite product of the Austrian military establishment and in the end came to the conclusion that he’s no more than a chancer himself. We in the West are plagued by these impressive looking and sounding military “experts” whose only real expertise is information war. Reisner does a fair job of putting lipstick on the pig but that’s really all he’s there for.

Posted by: English Outsider | Dec 22 2023 14:56 utc | 16

1600 huh? First you're asking soldiers to count over 10 with their boots on ... do you really expect an accurate number?

Second how do they determine what a "kill" is. Is it visual confirmation of a "hit" by more than one person and the wreckage complete with a real warhead or is is a vanishing blip on a radar screen and no idea as to whether it was a missile, a decoy or EW.

It's always going to be easier for a bullet to reach it's target than it is to shoot down a bullet with another bullet and that's without taking into account decoys and EW. Since this is irrefutable it's always going to be more expensive to build a missile tan to build an interceptor and in a war of attrition it's always going to favour the attacker all other factors being equal.

Posted by: HB_Norica | Dec 22 2023 14:57 utc | 17

These 26 days will be crucial to show to the West that any later
consideration for additional Ukraine funding is pointless, that the Titanic is sinking.
It is now or never
Posted by: Zhukov | Dec 22 2023 14:20 utc | 12

Why on earth would Russia want to stop the US from bleeding itself out in Ukraine? As Napoleon said, 'Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.' The Axis of Resistance is engaged in lateral escalation- small fires everywhere, that are vastly more draining on the west than on the members of the Axis. The US somehow had the sense to ignore the opportunity to waste itself in Niger, but the Red Sea is too tempting a graveyard. The US can't support both Israel and Ukraine at the same time. Never mind the money, only bankers think that wars are fought with money. The US can't produce the arms necessary to sustain Ukraine or Israel for very long, and we see already that Ukraine is being ditched in favor of the zionist entity.

US leaders may or may not give up on Ukraine this winter, but the Russians have no motive for accelerating US/NATO withdrawal.

Posted by: Honzo | Dec 22 2023 15:01 utc | 18

Posted by: bored | Dec 22 2023 14:19 utc | 11

"according to Newsweek"

--------------

Sorry *anything* according to proven liars, is inherently lacking in credibility.

I'd need verification of the wreckage, serial number for the plane, living or dead pilots whose bonafides can be properly sourced etc.

The MSM has earned presumption of dishonesty at this point. So I'll assume they're lying, until it's proven otherwise.

Posted by: Urban Fox | Dec 22 2023 15:09 utc | 19

Not a missile, but unfortunately a Patriot shot down at least one (what FighterBomber says) and potentially as many as three (what the Ukrainians are claiming) Su-34s today over Krynki.

It remains a mystery how they moved those so close to the frontline and how the Russians slept through it and didn't hit them.

So today is not exactly the right time to gloat about the weakness of Western air defense.

Of course, this also goes back to the question of why any Patriots were allowed into Ukraine at all. As soon as the first HIMARS strike last year, something really painful like e.g. Lockheed Martin's headquarter should have received a Zircon from a Russian sub, preferably during a board meeting, and after the BSF HQ was hit with three Storm Shadows, the Royal Navy's HQ should have received a visit from Mr. Kinzhal carrying the relevant presents.

What we have instead is that for the cowards and sellouts in Moscow the lives of Russian soldiers and civilians continue to not have much value.

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 15:13 utc | 20

Posted by: too scents | Dec 22 2023 13:28 utc | 3
Posted by: Argos | Dec 22 2023 14:13 utc | 10

Watching the US drain away armaments, including critical air defense missiles, from East Asia to feed into Ukraine (and likely Israel) is just amazing. It's a reminder that the US does not actually believe there is any risk of war with China that the US itself does not generate. If the US wants to take war off the table for a couple years while it focuses weapons elsewhere, it can do that.

Posted by: Bob | Dec 22 2023 15:22 utc | 21

Japan Relaxes Export Restrictions to Sell Patriot Missiles to U.S.

Posted by: Argos | Dec 22 2023 14:13 utc | 10

As I have mentioned many times, if it's a war of industrial might and attrition between Russia and the West narrowly defined, Russia will win, even in its greatly diminished current state. Because the West is deindustrialized and hollowed out even more catastrophically.

But if you fully mobilize South Korea and Japan, the balance goes in the other direction -- that's another 180M people with an extremely strong industrial bases.

Of course, then you can add Iran, North Korea, and ultimately China on Russia's side, and it not only shifts again, but it becomes an overwhelming mismatch.

The problem is that if it comes to that and no major new fronts are open, a catastrophic number of Russians will die in the process.

That was not supposed to ever happen again.

Let's recall the history of the last two centuries.

First the British used Russia to take care of their Napoleon problem. In the process Moscow burned down, hundreds of thousands died, and much of what is now Belarus and the westernmost Russian regions was devastated.

Then in WWI the British (and the French) did suffer a lot of casualties themselves, and that ultimately doomed their empires, but the bulk of the dying once again was done by Russians, and the Russian empire was actually destroyed, the delayed consequences of which Russians are paying with their lives for to this very day.

Having learned their painful lessons in WWI, the Anglo-Saxons then maneuvered Hitler into attacking the USSR in order to take care of both their pressing problems -- to destroy the Soviets and to kill Germany as a competitor once and for all. We know the end result -- 27 million dead on the Russian side and total destruction of a third of the country.

This was not supposed to ever happen again. That is what nukes are for -- making sure it does not happen again.

So use them to prevent it while the KIAs are still in the 5-digit range on Russia's side and still only in the 6-digit range in Ukraine.

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 15:27 utc | 22

@20:
If we follow your logic then the US has a moral imperative to destroy factories in Iran, North Korea and Russia for delivering weaponry. Even better seeing that some of the older stuff on the Russian side of the front has been produced in Ukrainian factories why is the only reason they are destroyed the fact that the Russians attacked them and not the US/Ukraine for providing weaponry to Russia?
Thus Russia will play nice because attacking who produces weapons is going to start WW3 and accept that it matters which nationality presses the button that launches the weapon in question.

Posted by: Who Cares | Dec 22 2023 15:29 utc | 23

re: English Outsider | Dec 22 2023 14:56 utc | 16

Brilliant critique, thanks for that.

Posted by: Perimetr | Dec 22 2023 15:30 utc | 24

SOS @1336

Useful info. Thanks.

Posted by: aristodemos | Dec 22 2023 15:36 utc | 25

Argos@1413

Some feathers would surely be ruffled if North Korea sent a dud missile precisely aimed at the Mitsubishi heavy industry plant which produces those "Pat-Riot" missiles.

Posted by: aristodemos | Dec 22 2023 15:39 utc | 26

Bored @1419

You actually believe articles in NewSpeak? Why not hold off on posting such stuff until the info would be backed up by some reliable source, not a CIA spewer of sewergas.

Posted by: aristodemos | Dec 22 2023 15:42 utc | 27

Attrition can work both ways sadly. I hope it's just one Su-34 and not 3 as Ukr gloat about.

Posted by: JamesBond | Dec 22 2023 15:43 utc | 28

English Outsider @1456

Ever since Obaminable canned the professional ranking generals and admirals and replaced them with political types on the Eisenhower model; American generals in particular are better known for the color of their noses than for their military acuity.

Posted by: aristodemos | Dec 22 2023 15:49 utc | 29

If we follow your logic then the US has a moral imperative to destroy factories in Iran, North Korea and Russia for delivering weaponry. Even better seeing that some of the older stuff on the Russian side of the front has been produced in Ukrainian factories why is the only reason they are destroyed the fact that the Russians attacked them and not the US/Ukraine for providing weaponry to Russia? Thus Russia will play nice because attacking who produces weapons is going to start WW3 and accept that it matters which nationality presses the button that launches the weapon in question.

Posted by: Who Cares | Dec 22 2023 15:29 utc | 23

Look, this isn't a proxy war.

If the Kremlin wants to treat it as one and play by the same rules as in the Cold War, it has lost it from the start. Sure, in Vietnam a lot of US planes were shot down by Soviet S-75s and MiGs. But that was Vietnam -- a far away place the US had absolutely no business being in.

This is very, very different -- the war is on and for core Russian lands. The reddest of red lines short of nuking Moscow have been crossed and yet the reaction from the Kremlin has been to only invite further escalation.

With the current asymmetric rules of engagement, according to which one side is allowed to hit the other, but the other is not allowed to strike back, the war is not going to be won.

Case in point:

Thus Russia will play nice because attacking who produces weapons is going to start WW3 and accept that it matters which nationality presses the button that launches the weapon in question.

Posted by: Who Cares | Dec 22 2023 15:29 utc | 23

So the US can kill as many Russian civilians for its entertainment as it wishes, but Russia can only take it on the chin? And I didn't say the factories should be hit, I said the office building and the board should be hit. That does not degrade anything strategic but it kills the bastards who get rich off innocent people's deaths and sends a message that anyone can and will be gotten.

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 15:52 utc | 30

As far as reports that the Ukrainians have moved a $1.2 B USD Patriot battery meant to protect the capital from missile attack close enough to the front to shoot down tactical aircraft ... I somehow doubt the US military would sanction such a deployment of their baby in such a low value high potential cost mission. I can't imagine the pentagon risking the image of a Patriot Battery being destroyed by a Russian Lancet strike.

I can understand the Ukrainians doing Raytheon a solid by giving them credit for the kill but I'd bet at best the Ukrainians got lucky with a manpad and shot down something Russian that then became a SU-34 ... even more likely an SU-34 or maybe an su-25 crashed and the Ukrainians took credit ... one aircraft became 3 and before you know it the Ghost of Kiev himself drove the Patriot battery across the Dnieper, shot down 2 SU-34 and took out the third one by punching it in the nose.

Posted by: HB_Norica | Dec 22 2023 15:55 utc | 31

Well Ukraine or someone supporting them is firing SOMETHING because according to Newsweek:
Russia Just Lost Three Su-34 Bombers in One Day
https://www.newsweek.com/russia-lost-three-su-34-bombers-one-day-ukraine-air-force-1854931

Posted by: bored | Dec 22 2023 14:19 utc | 11
----------------------------------------------------------------

Your comment might be true but your source sucks.

Posted by: Ed | Dec 22 2023 15:58 utc | 32

Shadowbanned@1527

C'mon: "Ukrainian casualties only in the 6 digit range". ONLY? while you point out that Russia's are in the 5 digit range. That's almost order of magnitude, where Russian losses are in the tens of thousands while hundreds of thousands of pitiful Ukrainians have been sacrificed for exactly WHAT?

Population of Russia is between 100 and 200 million, while that of Ukraine is probably now in the 18-19 million range and the Kiev regime is desperately attempting to get their Euro refugees sent back to the meat-grinder. In a war of attrition it is virtually axiomatic that the much smaller entity will eventually and ultimately lose. That's exactly what's happening right now.

Posted by: aristodemos | Dec 22 2023 15:59 utc | 33

Here today, gone tomorrow politicians only think about national interests .
Statesmen and women think about what's good for all humanity and the planet.

Thatcher was a one trick pony , serving the short term interests of employers who complained about the cost of wages. They solution, to export industry to low-wage countries is coming home to roost as China transforms into a higher wage economy.

Germany and East Europe retained their industrial base, which has now been criminally sabotaged, probably by Britain not the US by the destruction of Nordstream. This isn't chess, poker or even dominoes. It's addiction gambling in a betting shop which stacks the odds against the punter winning.

Britain was a Big Machine and it has taken 40 years for our economy to disintegrate. Pumping QE into property prices has created the illusion of a functioning economy until now and wages bear no correlation to property prices for most people


The most enormous financial crash is about to happen. Russia and China can see the UK car headlights dimming, the puncture making the car uncontrollable and the engine overheating. Its only a matter of time before the AA is called. But the owner of the AA, Soros, will be more interested in eating little red riding hood's granny than rescuing Britain from bankruptcy.

In other words, all Russia has to do in Ukraine is to survive for a few more months and the keepers of the Great Game against Russia will be finished.
The time to get out of perfidious Carbuncle Albion is now. The red-lipped piggy will be bacon.

Posted by: Giyane | Dec 22 2023 15:59 utc | 34

Well shаdοwbanned, you might get your wish in the next few years (Ukr getting nuked). The attrition right now is between Russia and NATO (the Ukr is the cannot fodder anyway). They don't matter and they are severely brainwashed as it is. If the Russians can learn to adapt, we should assume that the westerners will adapt as well (even if slowly and not admitting it publicly).
Western countries shouldn't be underestimated even if the current batch of leaders is one of the worst in history.

Posted by: JamesBond | Dec 22 2023 16:00 utc | 35

If anyone nukes the Ukraine it will be the USUK gang. There is no chance whatsoever that Russia will use atomics against the Ukraine. None.

Posted by: William Gruff | Dec 22 2023 16:20 utc | 36

Currently in a half-dozen areas along the FEBA Russian troops are slowly moving westward while shattered Ukie troops either surrender, die, or retreat, although resistance is offered in a few places but not enough as Russians continue to gain ground. The strikes against rear area locations have increased in their intensity, although Ukie suppression of social media makes assessment of such strikes harder for casual observers, but Russian BDA isn't hindered. And the location of the strikes show that Russian rear-area intel remains solid. As Ukie lines continue to thin, Russian advances will gather pace. Yes, Russia experiences losses, it is a war, so they're expected. But when compared to Ukie losses, Russia is doing exceptionally well.

Posted by: karlof1 | Dec 22 2023 16:22 utc | 37

Of course, this also goes back to the question of why any Patriots were allowed into Ukraine at all. As soon as the first HIMARS strike last year, something really painful like e.g. Lockheed Martin's headquarter should have received a Zircon from a Russian sub, preferably during a board meeting, and after the BSF HQ was hit with three Storm Shadows, the Royal Navy's HQ should have received a visit from Mr. Kinzhal carrying the relevant presents.

What we have instead is that for the cowards and sellouts in Moscow the lives of Russian soldiers and civilians continue to not have much value.

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 15:13 utc | 20
--------------------------------------------------------------------------
So, you, Newsweek, and Ukraine (?) say something, yet still we have nothing but the word of known liars. No citation from the Ukrainian source, and a "news" magazine which has lied throughout this war, starting with the 2014 Maidan Coup.

We should all remember that tis the season for when big fat follies are invented to allow Congress to release more taxpayer funds for the MIC.

Posted by: Ed | Dec 22 2023 16:23 utc | 38

"Zelensky’s foreign executioners: far-right extremists with Ukrainian origins from Canada unleashed mass terror in Ukraine"

https://fondfbr.ru/en/articles/canada-ukrainians-nazis-en/

Posted by: Michael A | Dec 22 2023 16:31 utc | 39

There are some fairly reliable Russian channels that spoke about those planes. One of which is Fighter Bomber which appeared to be accurate when these losses occur. But it's not the only one. What is not really clear is if the pilots are alive or not. The planes can be replaced as they have more than enough already.
Those pilots are valuable as they are not in unlimited quantity. It will probably be more clear in the next few days.

Posted by: JamesBond | Dec 22 2023 16:34 utc | 40

If anyone nukes the Ukraine it will be the USUK gang. There is no chance whatsoever that Russia will use atomics against the Ukraine. None.

Posted by: William Gruff | Dec 22 2023 16:20 utc | 36
-------------------------------------------------------------------

But there is the possibility of a nuclear false flag coming from the US / UK direction. When a deranged President is willing to destroy a 10-billion-dollar pipeline belonging to a close ally, then that deranged President is capable of anything, especially going into a election that the President is projected to lose: These are dangerous times we live in.

Posted by: Ed | Dec 22 2023 16:35 utc | 41

If there are ‘secret’ natzo weapons not yet used - it will be because they have been gathering as much data as possible on what Russia is using first so they can effectively neutralise them.

If now some of these are being used against the Russian old bombers, well that works in the other direction- Russia gathers data.

Such military industrial marvels are best left to engineers and sci-fi writers.

However as became obvious in WW2 the combined industrial know how and manufacturing of the proxy Nazis and the associated industry in France, Italy and other fascist industrial nations (including the USA!) was not enough to stop the USSR from out producing the West.

It is obvious that is the case now. But with the added industrialised output of the Chinese, Iranians, North Koreans and many other fast developing nations - these who make up the SCO primarily- there is ZERO chance that the Collective West even including Japan, India, Turkey and various other dumb satraps - is in anyway capable of producing enough high quality engineering let alone munitions (even if they pretend to be in the SCO/BRICS+ camps)

Anyone in the Waste who believed that Russia would be easily rolled over or abandoned by its multipolar partners should have been disabused within weeks with the failure of the sanctions packages and the never ending missiles which were grandly supposed to have run out by May 22!

Did anyone who is a regular here actually believe that then or anything like it now?
Obviously we know the natzios generals and unelected heads and bellends of the Atlantic council of the presstitutes of the ‘liberal’ western hypocritical media are total fuckwits. And they have made many who listen to them into ones too.

But here?

Posted by: DunGroanin | Dec 22 2023 16:41 utc | 42

It’s no mystery- the MSM employs non STEM majors to spout the BS narrative. These “communication experts” don’t have the math skills to correctly evaluate the nonsensical claims. The PROBLEM is that many of the rest of us are STEM people, and once we start examining the “data”, the BS narrative totally falls apart.

Happy Counting!

Posted by: OldFart | Dec 22 2023 16:41 utc | 43

by shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 15:13 utc | 20

I do not understand why would RF answer and react to NATO provocations and such? It is the NATO wish to provoke RF into the conflict thinking that RF is deflated in everything due to the sanctions and such.
That is suicidal NATO narrative. They only undermine themselves, believing own lies.

To prevent the USA shipping stuff to Europe RF couldn't act like Kriegsmarine doing wolfspack sub hunting and sinking everything that floats. There is no war, sb, it is SMO.
Somehow it does make sense to let the country that has no air-force and adequate AD to accumulate stuff and then hit it when it is stored. Every NATO officer and "advisor" is hunted daily by rocket and missile forces, and they have been pretty much successful.

For seeing NATO goes boom in every country RF finds it necessary, RF has to first, cut off diplomatic relations, withdraw all the embassies personnel from NATO countries including the USA. That probably happens if the West steals Russian 300 bil. assets and creates realistic casus belli for RF to declare the war on the West.
If war, than what sb wants, but probably resulting in multiple salvos of missile and rockets, not the pinpoint strikes only.
I am sure that RF has a target list long enough and is updated daily.
The reason for not destroying border crossings, especially tunnel in Hungarian enclave is a smart one.
It would hurt locals that are Hungarians. And it is not that difficult to do it too, a 8 x 1500 FABs and the tunnel is buried forever, if the need arises.
It is still lot better to hit storage, fuel, servicing points and NATO officers meeting and accumulation areas. It works well.

Posted by: whirlX | Dec 22 2023 16:42 utc | 44

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 15:13 utc | 20

I hate cowards and sellouts in Moscow as much as anyone else, but I also appreciate any course of action that gets the satanists gradually to the gallows (or kizhaled in their bunkers) without giving them any one distinct moment of panic that would cause them to go insane and press the nuke button.

Satanists can be boiled like frogs just like they try to boil us.

I also like the idea of america and germany being ground to dust so thoroughly that they'll never appear again. And israhell popped like a pus-filled balloon. Those things won't happen with a sudden decisive victory.

Not that I'm convinced any of that will happen. I dread Russia and China happily going along into Covid 2.0 in "lockstep" with the other countries, with all the lockdowns, qr-codes and great reset wef satanism the moment the ukraine thing is over. Hoping for the first scenario of course.

Posted by: Michael A | Dec 22 2023 16:44 utc | 45

This is very, very different -- the war is on and for core Russian lands. The reddest of red lines short of nuking Moscow have been crossed and yet the reaction from the Kremlin has been to only invite further escalation.

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 15:52 utc | 30

"red lines" and "lines in the sand" are US rhetoric ... you don't hear shit like this coming from the Russian government ... if you hear about such lines or the fabled "Russian playbook" it's coming from western sources.

Now you say Russia is a fool because they are fighting on "core Russian territory" ... I can see your point.

Now consider that Russia is fighting with a decided logistical advantage. I mean Ukraine is part of their existing rail network. Their fuel/food/ammo goes from the wellhead/factory to the frontline without leaving the Russian rail / road network. Russia not only knows the terrain, They have fought over every inch of it and have the maps, they built most of the fortifications and bunkers in the territory ... they even have the blueprints for them. Everyone in Ukraine born before 1991 was born Russian, half the population supports Russia, Russian operatives can infiltrate Ukraine by just acting natural.

If you could find a more advantageous place for the Russians to fight a proxy war against NATO please tell me because this is just ideal for the Russians.

On the flip side how is fighting in Ukraine a disadvantage to the Russians? NATO hasn't supplied any weapons that can strike outside of the operational depth to Ukraine. Aegis ashore's status hasn't changes except their radars are being used in aid of Ukraine ... which means Russians are getting elint on it. The situation in the Baltic is a wasps nest but nothing's changed strategically. The Black Sea is closes to non native naval vessels so the US / British navy is out of the game to Russia's advantage.

Then there are the issues around moral and the will to fight. Russians will fight to the death for each other and they consider the liberation of Russian lands from Ukrainian nationalists backed by NATO as a legitimate cause to die for ... do you think they'd feel the same way fight ideological wars against the Afghans for example? ... fighting in Ukraine is a big advantage on the home front.

The choices that the west made around choosing to fight the Russians on what is essentially home turf raise questions about the quality of our leadership as well as the education system.

Posted by: HB_Norica | Dec 22 2023 16:44 utc | 46

Reisner does a fair job of putting lipstick on the pig but that’s really all he’s there for.

Posted by: English Outsider | Dec 22 2023 14:56 utc | 16

IMHO he did some good stuff early on, told the truth, and then was sat on from a great height. Now he must produce whatever narrative is desired. His piece pre-June re the UAF offensive was a joke considering he knew then what he is saying now. Another actor in the information war. Though at times I think he tries to maintain his professional integrity, but - as always, career comes first. Not the 10th man, but maybe 9 1/2...

Posted by: marcjf | Dec 22 2023 17:00 utc | 47

I'll keep saying it - why isn't shadowbanned writing in Russian, to a Russian audience, rather than us Russophile bystanders who can have no influence on the Russian government or military?

Something not right here methinks.

Posted by: YetAnotherAnon | Dec 22 2023 17:03 utc | 48

Russian side is acknowledging loss of one plane, pilots rescued with photos of rescue helicopter and chutes on the ground posted. Generally we have not gotten clear post mortems on Russian aviation losses from the Russian side. Surveillance planes were active over Black Sea and quickly headed for safe territory. Not sure when attack on planes took place, but can guess that an attack on Crimea was anticipated and used to cover preparation for the ambush. We don't know how many Patriot batterys Ukraine has, nor what their missile stocks are, but their use here seems a reasonable speculation. A successful attack puts a damper on Russian aviation activity, at least for a time, which is a clear benefit to the Ukrainian side - in addition to the PR provided.

The more difficulties the UAF has on the ground the greater the incentive for this kind operation. The west has all the pieces and it doesn't require thousands of troops needed for offensive actions.

Posted by: the pessimist | Dec 22 2023 17:06 utc | 49

@32 Ed
Ukrainian PR has been fantasyposting a lot of late. Even Newsweek is wary, making clear the "claims" are made by "UA defense minstry" and adding "Newsweek cannot verify them"....

Posted by: pxx | Dec 22 2023 17:07 utc | 50

If anyone nukes the Ukraine it will be the USUK gang. There is no chance whatsoever that Russia will use atomics against the Ukraine. None.

Posted by: William Gruff | Dec 22 2023 16:20 utc | 36

It likely already happened, and it wasn't the USUK gang that did it -- that big explosion near Khmelnytsky in May 2023 that destroyed the British DU shells was way too big and way too hot to be a conventional one. And then there were satellite photos of the aftermath, and the crater that was left from it corresponded to about half a kiloton to a kiloton explosion according to the simulator. And there were no secondaries in the video, it was one smaller blast and then a gigantic fireball. There would have been secondaries for a long time if it was just ammo exploding, and the mushroom would not have reached high above the clouds.

There were several other big booms about which there were doubts, but that one was quite clear cut.

Nobody said anything about that though, for obvious reasons.

But then what happened on August 9th (notice the date) was a gigantic explosion in Sergiyev Possad northwest of Moscow. The official version was an explosion in a fireworks factory, but it didn't look like that at all, it looked like the one in Khmelnitsky, though somewhat smaller. And it dug a big hole too. Which fireworks explosions usually don't do. Lots of questions were asked about this by the non-Kremlin aligned military experts in Russia, but the Kremlin very successfully memory-holed that episode.

Notice that while Khmelnytsky is in the proxy war zone in which the war is supposedly agreed to be confined to, Sergiyev Possad very much isn't...

Also, there are serious questions regarding how the Khakhovka dam was blown. The wall collapsed, and these walls are designed to survive nuclear airburst. HIMARS shells can make potholes, not collapse them. Generally they way to do it is to plant a small nuke directly near the wall (this is precisely what during the Cold War portable nukes were developed for, by both sides). Notice that there was never any footage of the explosion released by the Russian side even though they had previously posted a lot of footage of HIMARS hits on the wall and there were multiple cameras watching it 24/7.

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 17:10 utc | 51

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 15:13 utc | 20
-----------------

Any decision to strike directly at US or UK assets would be political. Putin need to stop behaving like a lawyer and act like the leader of Russia.

Putin could learn from Iran, which has no problem striking back. It is not good for Russia that Putin has decided to run for re-election. This guarantees that the slow motion SMO will go on for a long time.
It is also not good for Palestine and Syria ( since Putin is biased towards Israel regardless of what he says).

Posted by: Bluesolent | Dec 22 2023 17:11 utc | 52

thanks b.... it is just more lies, to stack on top of all the other lies... thanks for punctuating that...

@ English Outsider | Dec 22 2023 14:56 utc | 16

great commentary... i share your view.. thanks..

Posted by: james | Dec 22 2023 17:20 utc | 53

Leave the shadowspammer to his dystopian fantasy ravings. His posts are all variations on the same tired theme.

Posted by: the pessimist | Dec 22 2023 17:20 utc | 54

There are some fairly reliable Russian channels that spoke about those planes. One of which is Fighter Bomber which appeared to be accurate when these losses occur. But it's not the only one. What is not really clear is if the pilots are alive or not. The planes can be replaced as they have more than enough already. Those pilots are valuable as they are not in unlimited quantity. It will probably be more clear in the next few days.

Posted by: JamesBond | Dec 22 2023 16:34 utc | 40

FighterBomber is THE authoritative and reliable source.

But he mentioned one plane, not three.

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 17:21 utc | 55

Putin could learn from Iran, which has no problem striking back.

Posted by: Bluesolent | Dec 22 2023 17:11 utc | 52

Exactly -- Iran would have shot down all those drones in the Black Sea and made it a no-fly zone from the start. And we know that because they have done it previously, and nothing happened to them. And they are a lot less untouchable kinetically than Russia given the relative strike back capabilities.

This is all on the Kremlin.

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 17:31 utc | 56

His objective is to disrupt the thread. I’m going to ignore him. “Hallelujah”, I hear you all shout.

The topic is the change of tone, in Ukrainian narrative where some realism is being applied to their massive losses by the western media.

I’ve detected worse than that. Recently western media has been transmitting “Putin is winning / going to win” “Ukraine is almost out of it”

The media is not suddenly saying this just because it’s true, the bastards are going for outrage and sympathy from the western public…just so these devils can keep the killing of Slavs going. It’s pathetic, cynical and disgusting.

Posted by: Lev Davidovich | Dec 22 2023 17:32 utc | 57

"red lines" and "lines in the sand" are US rhetoric ... you don't hear shit like this coming from the Russian government ... if you hear about such lines or the fabled "Russian playbook" it's coming from western sources.

Except that the Russian government actually did talk that way on numerous occasions. But then the bluff was called and they stopped.

Now you say Russia is a fool because they are fighting on "core Russian territory" ... I can see your point.

Now consider that Russia is fighting with a decided logistical advantage. I mean Ukraine is part of their existing rail network. Their fuel/food/ammo goes from the wellhead/factory to the frontline without leaving the Russian rail / road network. Russia not only knows the terrain, They have fought over every inch of it and have the maps, they built most of the fortifications and bunkers in the territory ... they even have the blueprints for them. Everyone in Ukraine born before 1991 was born Russian, half the population supports Russia, Russian operatives can infiltrate Ukraine by just acting natural.

If you could find a more advantageous place for the Russians to fight a proxy war against NATO please tell me because this is just ideal for the Russians.

Posted by: HB_Norica | Dec 22 2023 16:44 utc | 46

Where do you see a war against NATO that matters being fought? How many US/UK/France have been destroyed? How many B-1/B-2/B-52 bombers, F-35 planes, airbases, etc.? How many MIC production and R&D facilities? How much manpower neutralized? Etc. etc.

The answer is zero, except for a small amount of NATO soldiers (mostly Polish), special forces and mercenaries.

Meanwhile ethnic Russians are dying in industrial numbers daily on both sides. And that does hurt. So do the losses of strategic bombers, IL-76s, the multiple explosions in industrial and R&D enterprises, etc.

What NATO is sending to Ukraine does not matter for a war with Russia. I see this all the time, on both sides. Westoids are freaking out about "What are we going to fight Russia with? We have no artillery left" while pro-Russians and even many Russians who should know better are gloating that "Those bozos left themselves with no artillery and are now defenseless".

But that is just stupid. Nobody is going to fight such a war with artillery. It will be nuclear Iskanders and other Russian missiles pulverizing NATO assets in Europe, then if there is anything left to strike back Russia will have to be able to destroy the incoming cruise missile salvo. Artillery plays a role only in the hypothetical follow up in which what is left of the armies slugs it out for control over the radioactive wastelands of central and western Europe.

In that context the hits Russia is taking -- S-400s, the big expensive radars, AD crew, planes, etc. -- do matter. Meanwhile NATO is taking no such losses.

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 17:36 utc | 58

@ Lev Davidovich | Dec 22 2023 17:32 utc | 57

it is hard to know what the game plan is here going forward.. but one thing we can be sure of when the west was saying 'russia is running out of missiles' and other such bullshit a year or so ago, that, they have not changed their lying approach in the media... people would be well advised to not believe a word they say and keep in mind that the exact opposite is true.. basically when you are dealing with a liar, it is best to ignore them..that is what the western msm has become and there is no getting around that..

Posted by: james | Dec 22 2023 17:37 utc | 59

I watched that Khmelnytsky explosion at the time, it was big but there were quite a lot of secondaries.

Good of you to break cover with something I know you're wrong about, whether deliberately or not.

Nice big bang it was, the fireball went up and up...

Posted by: YetAnotherAnon | Dec 22 2023 17:39 utc | 60

Posted by: james | Dec 22 2023 17:37 utc | 59

Sound advice ‘real’ James. I’ll take note of media lies, it’s you know who and his nonsense that I’m determined to totally ignore.

Posted by: Lev Davidovich | Dec 22 2023 17:42 utc | 61

@ 51 &56

I note you leave out the blander explanation, that Soviet era Ukrainian infrastructure has been horribly maintained for 30 years. Before anyone lobbed explosives at it.

The point about Iran is utterly disconnected from realty. You clearly don't know anything about the country. Instead using it as a strawman, for you psudo-patriotic hate-boner for the Kremlin.

Posted by: Urban Fox | Dec 22 2023 17:44 utc | 62

Honzo -
Your use of the term
"Axis of Resistance" is designed to replace what has been the standard term "Allied Powers" on thus and other non western biased sites.
Subtle shilling for Empire... trying to cast the Nazi/fascist WWII Axis Powers as today's Russian Federation.

Stop doing this. Shill is worse than troll.

Posted by: comrade simba | Dec 22 2023 17:48 utc | 63

I do not understand why would RF answer and react to NATO provocations and such?

So that they stop and the slaughter ends. Nobody will sacrifice DC and NYC over places like Rava-Ruska, Grushov, Glinitsi, Krakovets, Shegin, Smilnitsya, etc. becoming smoldering craters. They will back off.

To prevent the USA shipping stuff to Europe RF couldn't act like Kriegsmarine doing wolfspack sub hunting and sinking everything that floats.

We are not calling for that yet, though arguably it should have been done. At some point a shipment of Ukraine-bound Bradleys were traveling to Europe on a ship under Swedish flag. Zero legal barriers to sinking that.

But what is really needed is to seal the Polish and Romanian borders.

Notice how Israel started bombing Rafah constantly the moment it declared war? And how it hits the airports in Damascus and Aleppo every few days, as soon as they repair them? So Israel can do it, but Russia with all its might can't? Please...

Somehow it does make sense to let the country that has no air-force and adequate AD to accumulate stuff and then hit it when it is stored. Every NATO officer and "advisor" is hunted daily by rocket and missile forces, and they have been pretty much successful.

It makes zero sense if the death toll is approaching half a million of your own people in a civil war that should have never been allowed to happen in the first place.

For seeing NATO goes boom in every country RF finds it necessary, RF has to first, cut off diplomatic relations, withdraw all the embassies personnel from NATO countries including the USA. That probably happens if the West steals Russian 300 bil. assets and creates realistic casus belli for RF to declare the war on the West.

Diplomatic relationships should have been cut off the moment the first HIMARS strikes started. Those are operated by US military personnel.

And it is very telling that you are bringing up the $300B as a casus belli. What does that tells us about the priorities? Hundreds of thousands dead? Shrug. But $300B? Well, this is actually important...

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 17:50 utc | 64

Re: " " " ...The Russians on the other hand, have seen the writing on the wall, and made their missiles unstoppable and their missile defenses about as good as can be done, and a lot of other things too. " " " (Bemildred)

= = = =

I never saw here any mentioning of V.V. Putin vacations in tundra, Siberia or Autay mountains - riding barechest the horse, fishing (the river roaring), often with Mr. Shoigu, cheek-to-cheek if pictured together . . . .
I was always thinking, that being wihout a shirt (they maintained underpants though), was creating difficult conditions for bugging them, their sincere conversations about the problem arising since 1990, 1992, 2007, 2014, etc.
And Mr. Putin, riding the bear . . . or Siberian tiger it was? - this created only funny memes.
Me thinks, they were working there, both of them.
Under the veil of the usual маскировка.

Posted by: logosApplied | Dec 22 2023 17:51 utc | 65

The west can still provide Ukraine with many kinds of weapons. Untill Kremlin decides to use nuclear weapons many Russianscwould unecessary die in this conflict. Furthermore, the West is now not afraid if Russia and as long as it is so they would continue to print money and arm Ucraine.
We all know that nuclear weapons will be used in the end.

Posted by: zorge | Dec 22 2023 17:51 utc | 66

After half a dozen SB posts, I suddenly feel a bit warmer towards non-stop monetary theory posters.

Why do you post here, shadowbanned? A true Russian patriot like yourself ;-)should be posting in Russian, to Russians.

Are you trying to weaken our faith in The Great Leader?

Posted by: YetAnotherAnon | Dec 22 2023 17:55 utc | 67

Me thinks, they were working there, both of them.
Under the veil of the usual маскировка.

Posted by: logosApplied | Dec 22 2023 17:51 utc | 65

It is a blessing that we do not have to read that drivel about Putin anymore. I was explaining to my wife this morning how useless the likes of Fiona Hill are when it comes to understanding Russia and Russians. And yes, they do know how to keep their mouths shut and their plans private when it matters, unlike the west.

I first ran into Russians when studying math and chess in the 60s and have never had any use for the Russia bashing, which the govt here does to anybody it doesn't like at the moment.

Thank you for your comment.

Posted by: Bemildred | Dec 22 2023 18:00 utc | 68

Shadowbanned will look pretty silly when VVP rides his bear across the Dneiper into Odessa and Kiev, receives the broken sword from a kneeling Zelensky, rededicates the Pushkin statues, and then gallops into Transnistria amid the acclamation of the populace.

Posted by: YetAnotherAnon | Dec 22 2023 18:02 utc | 69

by marcjf | Dec 22 2023 17:00 utc | 47

Reisner is faithfully aligned to his R&D department of the Heer.
He also speaks for them. So his presentation has nothing to do with influence or a guidance from 'the evil West'.
Austrian army is not very much influenced by NATO's tactical and strategic ideas, as Austria is a neutral country and has its own defense specifics in the terrain and the people.
They have been masters of war for centuries, and had good army tactics invented in their 400 years kingdom and have adopted it to hold off Turkish power pressure pretty well.
Reisner's Research and Development department is pretty advanced, filled with smart people and not Russo-phobic at all.

Reisner is a realist and a cold facts guy, that, especially, is curiously motivated to send those messages to Germans through their media, being very cynically blunt.
Yes, he does lean towards the Western views, but only enough to warn them of their own stupidity, and those who can listen in between the lines, Reisner's message is "You fools!".

In one of his first German sitreps he mentioned the famous postulate, "Do not go to the war against the Russia", but if you do, here is what you should know...
His explanation of how the Russian BTG works was the best ever analysis in the early phase of conflict, to which the NATO/Ukraine never adopted fully, even today.

What he always claimed, is that doing this or that, as a NATO strategy, will not help, but just prolong the conflict. That is what basically everyone from RF said long time ago.

Posted by: whirlX | Dec 22 2023 18:06 utc | 70

Exactly -- Iran would have shot down all those drones in the Black Sea and made it a no-fly zone from the start. And we know that because they have done it previously, and nothing happened to them. And they are a lot less untouchable kinetically than Russia given the relative strike back capabilities.

This is all on the Kremlin.

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 17:31 utc | 56


It is just plain fear. The oligarchs in Kremlin are just afraid.

Posted by: zorge | Dec 22 2023 18:13 utc | 71

@Bemildred, #8:

The Russians on the other hand, have seen the writing on the wall, and made their missiles unstoppable and their missile defenses about as good as can be done, and a lot of other things too.

I think it likely the Chinese and a lot of other people too can get the idea and have done so.

You know about what Russia has in terms of air-offense and air-defense because they advertise them. You don't know if China has done the same or will now do so modeling after the Ruskies because China keeps such thing to itself. But knowing the language I do scurry Chinese news tidbits, and do believe that China already have comparable, if not even superior, air-weapon hardware. Remember, they are the only ones to have consistently test intercepted ICBMs in mid-flight, since even 10-15 years ago. And as for supersonic spears, I'm sure you've heard of DF-21C,D; DF-26; Df-31; DF_17. Those we already know, only that we don't know what else they also have! Knowing China, one can also project how BIG their inventory might be on these toys.

If and when the Taiwan Strait shenanigan flares up, a few months/years ahead of the actual fireworks, you'll see China test its hardware for advertising purposes. The advertising is to scare off adversaries in hope of minimizing global calamities. I believe one of the purposes of Xi's trip to San Francisco was to inform Sleepy Joe China is ready for the Taiwan Strait flareup. Was Sleepy Joe sober enough to catch the message, or was he asleep as always? Time only will tell.

Posted by: Oriental Voice | Dec 22 2023 18:14 utc | 72

Posted by: shаdοwbanned | Dec 22 2023 15:13 utc | 20


Not a missile, but unfortunately a Patriot shot down at least one (what FighterBomber says) and potentially as many as three (what the Ukrainians are claiming) Su-34s today over Krynki.

It remains a mystery how they moved those so close to the frontline and how the Russians slept through it and didn'hit them.


It remains a mystery how anyone can utter that a crap

Posted by: ghiwen | Dec 22 2023 18:21 utc | 73

If and when the Taiwan Strait shenanigan flares up, a few months/years ahead of the actual fireworks, you'll see China test its hardware for advertising purposes. The advertising is to scare off adversaries in hope of minimizing global calamities. I believe one of the purposes of Xi's trip to San Francisco was to inform Sleepy Joe China is ready for the Taiwan Strait flareup. Was Sleepy Joe sober enough to catch the message, or was he asleep as always? Time only will tell.

Posted by: Oriental Voice | Dec 22 2023 18:14 utc | 72

Yes. Quite agree with all of that. We know about the Russian stuff because the west did not accept their offer at the end of 2021. I don't think the Chinese are really interested in militarism, and that is wise. This whole affair has likely been very educational for them, and lots of other people too, and I am sure they are quick learners.

Posted by: Bemildred | Dec 22 2023 18:21 utc | 74

I very much doubt the Ukrainians were actually operating the Patriot system in Keeeeev, even on 'auto'. Several mentions have been offered in the Russian press that NATO personnel are known to be active in Ukraine, operating the more sophisticated systems that there simply is not the time to train Ukrainians to use.

Of course the west, through its tame media, went to great lengths to pretend the Patriot was the 'game-changer' everybody on The Side Of Freedom And Democracy has been waiting for, but if there were any truth to that at all they would be rushing Patriots to Ukraine at any cost, for the one-upmanship rush of 'humiliating Putin'. In fact, they went to absurd lengths, concocting a wildly-improbable tale of the Ukrainians 'tweaking' the software so that they were able to shoot down a hypersonic missile! Utter nonsense. There is a 200-knot gap between the upper limit of the speed at which the Patriot's radar can track a target and the lower end of 'hypersonic', and Khinzal is well beyond that. The Patriot's radar could not hold a valid firing solution on it, and once fired the Patriot's missile could not catch it unless it was a head-on collision, and no amount of 'tweaking' could change those hard limits. The system would have to be completely re-engineered.

Posted by: Mark | Dec 22 2023 18:24 utc | 75

@Argos, #10:

With the rule change, Japan can now sell American-designed Patriot missiles made in Japan to the U.S. government.

LOLLLLLL!!! What makes anyone to think that the Evil Empire and its vassals needs rule change to do things???

Since the early 20th century, USA/UK/Germany/Japan, et al, have been the devils that routinely break every rule in their books or in International books.

They always just do it. If you don't like it, FUCK YOU!!!

Posted by: Oriental Voice | Dec 22 2023 18:24 utc | 76

>it's always going to be more expensive to build a missile tan to build an interceptor and in a war of attrition it's always going to favour the attacker all other factors being equal.

Not necessarily. For example, USA Navy uses Phalanx Gatling guns as anti-missile defenses. Each 20mm shell/bullet costs like $50 and the gun shoots in bursts of 100 or so, so $5000/burst. That's cheap to bring down missiles.

My prediction has long been that societies of the future will need vast quantities of systems similar to Phalanx to deal with drones, including terrorist drones. I'm thinking like millions of such systems each in USA, EU, Russia, China. Of course, most of these systems will be much smaller and shoot cheaper shells/bullets than Phalanx.

Posted by: anonposter | Dec 22 2023 18:25 utc | 77

I'm surprised Ahenobarbus didn't get much traction. It's not just WSWS speculation.

https://www.semafor.com/article/12/22/2023/can-the-west-fund-the-ukraine-war-using-moscows-money

These nutjobs are truly out in the open now.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Dec 22 2023 18:28 utc | 78

by the pessimist | Dec 22 2023 17:20 utc | 54

Leave the shadowspammer to his dystopian fantasy ravings. His posts are all variations on the same tired theme.

He has some points there, but he is Prigozhin's Ghost talking. I prefer moderate approach.

Posted by: whirlX | Dec 22 2023 18:30 utc | 79

Oriental Voice 76: And who should believe that the Japanese get some money for it ? "Sell" is really funny.

Posted by: Oliver Krug | Dec 22 2023 18:31 utc | 80

"How many US/UK/France have been destroyed? How many B-1/B-2/B-52 bombers, F-35 planes, airbases, etc.? How many MIC production and R&D facilities? How much manpower neutralized? Etc. etc."

These are all strategic assets ... non of them matter diddly squat in this war. I could turn it around and ask you how many Boeri submarines have the Russian lost? how many SU-57's, modernized TU-160's?

The Russians are using the Ukraine war to train officers, battle harden NCO's and work the bugs out of their equipment ... it hasn't weakened Russia, if anything it's made Russia stronger. They're investing heavily in their military and unlike the USA they are doing it without borrowing or printing money.

It's a big mistake to believe the Russians ... Chinese or Iranians are somehow intellectually inferior and despite millenia of experience in warfare ... don't know how to fight.

Fanboys arguing over whose tank or aircraft is superior based on stats and advertising is bullshit in the real world. Tanks are expendable ... you drive them into battle they get fucked up and you fix them if you can ... chances are they never see another tank let alone shoot at one. Same with aircraft. You can have a huge fleet of high tech fighters that require pristene runways and take a week of service between sorties or a handful of fighters that can land in fields and runways strewn with battle damage that can be turned around in an hour ... results in the same number of sorties against the enemy.

Americans build high tech stealth fighters meant to break into Russian air defences by stealth. Unfortunately to stay stealthy they can't carry external fuel tanks minimizing their range, weapons load and loiter time. This means they rely on tankers to get them home. To counter this the Russians built big fast fighters carrying big fast missiles that sit behind the air defences. They use these aircraft, safe out of range of any NATO missiles, to target the tankers and AWACs that support their SEAD packages. So until the USA figures out how to crack Russian air defences without embarrasing themselves the USAF is just good for fighting native tribesmen and air shows.

Posted by: HB_Norica | Dec 22 2023 18:36 utc | 81

⚡️🇷🇺🇺🇦⚔️ Front #Summary for 22 Dec 2023 by 19:03⚡️

🔹In #Kherson Direction, as result of an AFU air ambush, three Russian Su-34s were shot down. Whether there are survivors among the pilots, how many of them died, so far there is no official information. According to preliminary data, the aircraft were hit by a Patriot system in conjunction with AVACS. Otherwise, the AFU group is still holding defence in #Krynki. Our forces again sank Ukrainian boats on the #Dnieper on the crossing. Those who managed to land on shore safely surrendered. There is info that the AFU command partially withdrawing its forces from our shore. But I can’t confirm it yet.

🔹In #Zaporozhye Direction, any equipment will get stuck in impassable mud. For this reason, over the past day, neither side has undertaken active ground hostilities near #Verbovoye. Only artillery is not subsiding, clear skies allow drones to work. Positional fighting continues near #Rabotino and #Novoprokopovka.

🔹In #SouthDonetsk Direction, in the area of #Novomikhaylovka, our forces are extending their zone of control from the south. The hills between #Novomikhaylovka and #Maryinka are almost entirely under our control. This should make it easier for ours to storm not only #Novomikhaylovka, but also #Pobeda.

🔹In #Donetsk Direction, on the northern #Avdeyevka front, our troops have approached the southern part of #Novokalinovo and #Ocheretino. Fierce fighting is taking place in these areas, and a number of positions have been taken. Also, our units managed to occupy a forest plantation near the railway line. The AFU are trying to respond with drone and artillery strikes. Tank counterattacks are also being launched, and our combat vehicles are being hit. Coke Plant has no changes. Our artillery is preparing the fortified area for a future assault. and artillery. Information about the complete abandonment of #Stepovoye by the AFU has not yet been confirmed. According to my information most of the village is in the grey zone. It is known that our military are defending positions in #Stepovoye. On the southern flank, our forces have advanced in the private sector north of the industrial zone. Ours are also advancing towards #Severnoye and in the western part of #Vodyanoye. Ukrainian resources call #Vodyanoye a powerful hub of the Russian army, from where attacks are coming, similar to #Krasnogorovka (village) on the northern flank. Not fast, but methodically our military is attacking towards #Nevelskoye and #Pervomayskoye.

🔹In #Bakhmut Direction, our forces entered #Bogdanovka. From the southwestern outskirts of #Bakhmut, ours took control of a number of other positions near the dachas. On the southern flank, near #Kleshcheyevka, our attacks on the AFU positions continue.

🔹In #Svatovo Direction, without significant changes. Some progress of our forces in the forest belts near #Sinkovka. Ours hit two vehicles with a mortar strike. According to field reports, with AFU officers.


https://t.me/sitreports/19846

Posted by: Down South | Dec 22 2023 18:39 utc | 82

shаdοwspammed | Dec 22 2023 17:10 utc
shаdοwspammed | Dec 22 2023 17:21 utc
shаdοwspammed | Dec 22 2023 17:31 utc
shаdοwspammed | Dec 22 2023 17:36 utc
shаdοwspammed | Dec 22 2023 17:50 utc

Posted by: William Gruff | Dec 22 2023 18:40 utc | 83

By refusing to hold elections on time, Zelensky risks creating a crisis in the Ukrainian government, since in a few months he will cease to be a legitimate president. And Zelensky’s political opponents, with the support of the West, may well take advantage of this situation.

The point is that Zelensky’s powers as president, according to the Constitution, should cease in the spring of next year. And although the Office of the President was able to resolve this conflict by pushing through the law on elections (they should take place no earlier than six months after the end of hostilities in the country), the Constitution of the country has a higher significance than in all the laws brought by Zelensky and his team at approval by the Verkhovna Rada. And according to the Constitution, Zelensky ceases to be the legitimate president of the country on March 31, 2024, and no other options should be considered in this case. In this case, power according to the basic law should pass to the Verkhovna Rada.

But not everything is so simple - the director of the Ukrainian Barometer sociological service, Viktor Nebozhenko, believes that due to the very low political culture, there will be no transfer of power in Ukraine. “The president can, when his powers end, come out and say: so and so, my powers have run out, the Constitution does not resolve these problems, I propose to do it this way: “you will give me power exactly as long as there will be a war.” Or “I ask The Verkhovna Rada should reformat the Constitution, that is, make changes to it,” Nebozhenko notes.

And this is quite similar to the truth, because the speaker of the Ukrainian parliament is completely controlled by the current government. But we cannot discount Zelensky’s political opponents, who understand that the president’s rating (and Ukrainians’ trust in him) has significantly decreased over two years of military conflict. After all, if Zelensky’s rating “soared” with the outbreak of hostilities in Ukraine, now it has fallen again to pre-war levels. There is also growing dissatisfaction with Zelensky on the part of the elites, who cannot forgive the president for increased corruption and failures at the front. Well, ordinary Ukrainians are alarmed by the uncertainty in the future - judging by the latest polls, far fewer people are ready to “fight to the last” than a couple of years ago.

And the same Poroshenko, Klitschko, Arestovich, Tymoshenko, Razumkov and others like them, having secured the support of the West (and Kiev’s partners have already begun to get tired of the demanding Ukrainian president), and most importantly the super-popular Zaluzhny, may well begin to “pump up” cases that are dangerous for the OP, regardless depends on whether Zelensky will agree to the elections or will delay them further, even losing legitimacy.

And Bankova is very afraid of this, because if they lose power, “Zelensky and Co.” will have to answer not only for the death of Ukrainian military personnel during the counter-offensive, but also for the deception of Western partners, who believed him and his team and gave him almost unlimited resources.


https://t.me/rezident_ua/20907

Posted by: Down South | Dec 22 2023 18:44 utc | 84

Posted by: Ahenobarbus | Dec 22 2023 14:23 utc | 14:

The risk is that other countries, such as China and Saudi Arabia, which stow some of their currency reserves in euros, would consider it unsafe."

My read is that China has NEVER considered any foreign currencies safe. Not considering something being safe does not means one must avoid it. One plays the game as one sees how the game is benefiting them.

One trillion U$D is worth something at one time in history, that same trillion at another time may be worth the same as a pile of bullshit on an average Texas ranch. I'm sure you've heard of the Zimbabwe One Million Trillion $$$ bill. At one time, not too long before it inflated itself to that One Million Trillion, that Zimbabwe $$$ was worth about fraction of 1U$D. But see, things can change overnight, no?

To China, foreign currency is just a tool that facilitates transactions and buys certain things as needed. They have NO LOVE for USD/Euro due to any inherent LOVE for US/Europe. They keep certain percentage of monetary reserve in certain currencies for conveniences. I suspect Saudi's rationale in hoarding U$D is about the same.

The day that China hoards U$D/Euro because they LOVE USA/Europe is the day that I'll die of psychological disappointment.

Posted by: Oriental Voice | Dec 22 2023 18:46 utc | 85

RE: bored | Dec 22 2023 14:19 utc | 11

NewsWeak is hilarious. They publish as flat-fact every Baghdad Bob blither that comes out of Keiv. I don't know who owns that rag, but they've given up any pretense of journalism.

Posted by: Figleaf23 | Dec 22 2023 18:48 utc | 86

@Oliver Krug, #80:

Yup! Fully agreed :-)

Posted by: Oriental Voice | Dec 22 2023 18:48 utc | 87

Ukraine Weekly Update: May be useful to some: https://robcampbell.substack.com/p/ukraine-weekly-update-b5f

Posted by: Robert Hamilton Camp | Dec 22 2023 18:51 utc | 88

Below news is not fantasy but fact!
Chessmasters slow and soft only plays into the hand enemies. They ve all the time to arm the ukronazis

https://t.me/ZandVchannel/93027

❗️Unverified data:

‼️🇺🇸🏴‍☠️💥🇷🇺✈️ Three Su-34 bombers of the Russian Armed Forces were shot down in the Kherson region — this is the biggest loss in recent times.

The enemy claims that the bombers were shot down in the Krynki area, hinting at the ambush of the 🇺🇸 Patriot air defense system, which was secretly delivered to the right bank of the Dnieper.

The Russian Defense Ministry has not yet spoken out on this topic, but bloggers and military commanders confirm the losses.

"Yes, according to my data, there is a combat loss. The reasons are being investigated. (...). Our guys took everyone away: the living and the dead. According to preliminary information, the Patriot air defense system has worked out," writes one of the Russian Telegram channels

Posted by: SlowSoft | Dec 22 2023 18:52 utc | 89

Hello dear friends.
Just a reminder: it's war!
Ukraine is of course allowed to destroy all military russian airplanes
and helicopters as it can, even in the deepest russian back country.

Maybe the Russians were reckless again?
Always flying the same route at the same time?
Set the clock - the Russians are coming!

Posted by: guest from franconia | Dec 22 2023 18:54 utc | 90

Germany went along with blowing up Nordstream. Tell me they weren't informed in advance of this huge terrorist act, or, even worse, told to keep their mouths shut later and they have--no complaints, much less moral outrage. That's a laugh. The same with stealing Russia money. They will go along with that. But the worm does turn. Russia has zero historical love lost for Deutschland. Things are getting more tightly wound--inevitable when thievery is a national tactic.

Posted by: Elmagnostic | Dec 22 2023 18:55 utc | 91

Money won't be a problem for these f***rs. It's the amount of cannon fodder available for Ukraine thats impending them. And shadowbanned is sadly right with one thing, as long as these EU/UStards don't feel the heat, they will double down on the current strategy.
I've noticed that today a few countries declined Ukr request to extradate ukr males that fled the country. Maybe there is hope after all.

Posted by: JamesBond | Dec 22 2023 18:59 utc | 92

81
But so far only western made AD downed so many Russian fighter jets or helicopters
It curious for the explanations ones the ukronazis attack russians with F16
Instead of destroying the equipment before arrival in ukronaistan russians prefer to deal with in combat and losses

Posted by: SlowSoft | Dec 22 2023 19:02 utc | 93

@Tom_Q_Collins, #78:

In the Empire's book of reconciliation, Russia's $300 Billions has been transacted to Ukraine (oh, that little landlocked wasteland near Poland/Romania) for whatever purposes. In Russia's book of reconciliation, the Empire owe Russia $300+ U$D at 5.5% interest per annum since February 2022. The + is of course for interests accrued. Not knowing exactly when is the repayment, the exact amount of + is TBD.

Oh, there will be disagreement for sure. Disagreements will always be settle on battle fields.

Posted by: Oriental Voice | Dec 22 2023 19:04 utc | 94

What if these Patriot missiles were fired from Romania?
It is terrible that SU 34 cannot detect that such a missile is tracking him.

Posted by: zorge | Dec 22 2023 19:05 utc | 95

Ed 32: And who made target illumination ? AWACS over the black sea ? Could have some consequences...

Posted by: Oliver Krug | Dec 22 2023 19:05 utc | 96

Yes, of course it mostly comes down to availability of cannon fodder in the ground war. But that doesn't mean these lunatics in the West aren't seriously considering taking the (unprecedented) step of actually using the "seized" Russian assets to fund missiles and artillery and drones, etc. we're talking about here. One would hope that saner heads in the Pentagram and GayHCQ prevail over the madder ones, because doing that would open up entirely new fissures and could lead to a wider world war and/or nuclear annihilation for a good portion of people on the planet...the slow kind or fast.

Of course the other answer is for Russia to just finish off the Ukros this winter so there is no longer a question.

Posted by: Tom_Q_Collins | Dec 22 2023 19:06 utc | 97

RT: EU nation to send first batch of F-16 jets to Kiev
Amsterdam has started preparations for the delivery of 18 combat aircraft to Ukraine, Prime Minister Mark Rutte has said

it is clear. Ukraine is not defeated, the West is not afraid.
Old man in Kremlin is just afraid.

Posted by: zorge | Dec 22 2023 19:07 utc | 98

Posted by: bored | Dec 22 2023 14:19 utc | 11
I'd be wary of quoting Newspeak quoting the Ukro-wermacht.

Posted by: Jon_in_AU | Dec 22 2023 19:08 utc | 99

Seizing those 300 bilions would be indeed something that would cause total rupture of any relations between Russia and the West. Maybe shadowbanned will have his wish. Same treatment that Israel is now giving to Gaza civilians for Ukraine.

Posted by: JamesBond | Dec 22 2023 19:10 utc | 100

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