Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
December 06, 2023

U.S. Is Withholding Aid To Push Ukraine Towards Negotiations With Russia

Yesterday, at 9:46 local time, Strana published (machine translation):

Volodymyr Zelensky to address US senators via video link today - The Washington Post

Today, President Volodymyr Zelensky will address US senators via video link with a request to approve financial assistance to Ukraine. ...

Twelve hours later, at 21:43 local time, this piece came out:

"Something's happened." Zelensky canceled his speech to US senators at the last moment

President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky canceled his speech to lawmakers scheduled for today at the last moment. This was announced by the head of the Democratic majority in the US Senate, Chuck Schumer.

"By the way, Zelensky was not able to join our briefing at 15:00 (22:00 Kiev time) – something happened at the last minute," Schumer said.

Well, yes, something had happened:

Ukraine Aid Falters in Senate as Republicans Insist on Border Restrictions

President Biden’s urgent push to replenish Ukraine’s war chest and send aid to Israel is on the brink of collapse in the Senate, where Republicans are prepared on Wednesday to block the funding unless Democrats agree to add strict measures to clamp down on migration at the U.S. border with Mexico.

A classified briefing with administration officials called to shore up support devolved into a partisan screaming match on Tuesday afternoon, with Republicans angrily accusing Democrats of trying to steamroller over their demands for a border crackdown.

It would have been easy for the Democrats to commit a few billions for border security. But Biden wants to end the war in Ukraine. Starving it of money is the easiest way to push it towards negotiations.

All this was planned by the Pentagon think tank RAND which, early this year, published a study about how to end the war in Ukraine:

Avoiding a Long War - U.S. Policy and the Trajectory of the Russia-Ukraine Conflict

(A 2019 study by RAND, Extending Russia - Competing from Advantageous Ground, had recommended to openly arm Ukraine to keep Russia busy. It has been the basis of U.S. Ukraine policy ever since.)

But in early 2023 RAND had turned a corner and argued that a prolonged war in Ukraine will be too costly for the U.S. to sustain:


The biggest Ukraine problem the White House currently has is President Vladimir Zelenski who has rejected any and all negotiations with Russia.

The RAND study had foreseen such a situation and had found ways to push Ukraine towards talks with Russia:

[T]he United States could decide to condition future military aid on a Ukrainian commitment to negotiations. Setting conditions on aid to Ukraine would address a primary source of Kyiv's optimism that may be prolonging the war: a belief that Western aid will continue indefinitely or grow in quality and quantity. At the same time, the United States could also promise more aid for the postwar period to address Ukraine's fears about the durability of peace. Washington has done so in other cases, ...
Linking aid to Ukrainian willingness to negotiate has been anathema in Western policy discussions and for good reason: Ukraine is defending itself against unprovoked Russian aggression. However, the U.S. calculus may change as the costs and risks of the war mount. And the use of this U.S. lever can be calibrated. For example, the United States could level off aid, not dramatically reduce it, if Ukraine does not negotiate. And, again, a decision to level off wartime support pending negotiations can be made in tandem with promises about postwar sustained increases in assistance over the long term.

That was a nice plan. But how well the aid lever can be calibrated depends of course on Congress, not on the president's say so.

There are also downsides to withholding or giving aid promises:

Clarifying the future of U.S. aid to Ukraine could create perverse incentives depending on how the policy is implemented. Committing to increased wartime assistance to Ukraine to reduce Russian optimism could embolden the Ukrainians to obstruct negotiations, blame failure on Moscow, and gain more Western support. Announcing a decrease or leveling off in assistance to Ukraine to reduce Kyiv's optimism about the war could lead Russia to see the move as a signal of waning U.S. support for Ukraine. If it took this view, Russia might keep fighting in the hope that the United States would give up on Ukraine entirely. Although recognizing that Ukraine is fighting a defensive war for survival and Russia an aggressive war of aggrandizement, the United States would nonetheless have to carefully and dispassionately monitor events and target its efforts to create the intended effect on whichever side's optimism is determined to be the key impediment to starting talks.

This would probably have been a good way to go if Biden had control over dispensing or withholding funds to Kiev. But the Republicans as well as the Democrats, likely in consent with the White House, have so far blocked all further aid.

There current path then seems to be a different one towards negotiations with Russia - regime change in Kiev.

President Zelenski is unwilling to take up peace talks. If he can be pushed out of office during the next few months his likely replacement, General Zaluzny, will probably be more inclined to seek an end of the war.

Thus the current tactic is to pressure Zelenski into leaving by withholding all future funds. If another Ukrainian leader comes in, aid might again flow to prevent a total takeover of the country by Russia.

Still - the aid calibration would be a problem. So may be giving up and leave, as Biden did in Afghanistan, might be the preferred option.

Posted by b on December 6, 2023 at 11:32 UTC | Permalink

next page »

The dims seem to have the rethugs over a barrel on this one, 'cept I doubt it will matter.
In a year's time few are gonna remember the details of how it all happened other than dopey joe fucked up - again.

Posted by: Debsisdead | Dec 6 2023 11:53 utc | 1

There will be no negotiations. Russia will make demands and they will be agreed to or the battle continues. All the east and south will be governed by Russia and whatever remains will be denazified and disarmed. We knew this from the beginning. Now time to watch the paid trolls either rage or disappear.

Posted by: Watzov | Dec 6 2023 11:54 utc | 2

Ukraine SBU promised terror attacks throughout Europe if allies dare to back down from support in war against Russia. A festive season of Xmas ahead 🔥

Posted by: Oui | Dec 6 2023 11:55 utc | 3

Biden wants to end the war in Ukraine
says b. Hope it is true. How long have we been waiting for such a change in policies.

Posted by: grunzt | Dec 6 2023 12:02 utc | 4

I don't think it is money that is the problem here. The US can print as much as it wants. The real issue is military hardware. The cupboard is bare and NATO doesn't want to admit it. In a firefight when you run out of ammo, you have two choices, surrender or take your life. NATO is surrendering, but will not call it that.

Posted by: Chicago Bob | Dec 6 2023 12:11 utc | 5

In RAND World some costs are undesirable. But for RANDians all costs are sustainable.

This conjecture that all costs are sustainable will now be tested in the crucible of truth.

Posted by: too scents | Dec 6 2023 12:12 utc | 6

Why would Russia ever agree to negotiations with the “agreement incapable”?
No Minsk 3.0

Posted by: Anunnaki | Dec 6 2023 12:13 utc | 7

Some added bonus on that on new post

Posted by: Newbie | Dec 6 2023 12:15 utc | 8

In today's London TIMES, the ever idiotic Roger Boyes, Whitehall and Westminster's propagandist.
At least it confirms how 'The West' is still viewing the conflict: 'IT IS NATO'S DUTY TO THWART HIM'. Here is the piece in full:

Putin’s war plan for 2024 is a giant gamble
Switching Russia’s economy to all-out conflict in Ukraine requires urgent response from West
Roger Boyes THE TIMES 5 DECEMBER 2023

There is a silly question bouncing around the geopolitical talking shops: is Vladimir Putin winning? It’s about as illuminating as asking who’s winning after a couple of overs of a cricket match. It matters hugely, of course, how long Putin’s war against Ukraine will last.

Analysis of 75 years of data compiled by Uppsala University showed recently that “when interstate wars last longer than a year, they extend to over a decade on average”.

That dismal finding could well apply to the current war in the east, and who could say now whether Putin will come out alive from an elongated version of this conflict, let alone victorious?

Only one thing is certain: the Russian leader is sufficiently rattled to be hatching a significant rebrand of the war next spring. The supposed special military operation, the limited war, is set to be transformed into a general Russian mobilisation, an all-hands-on-deck attempt to expose cracks in Ukrainian resistance.

That’s not the action of a leader who believes victory to be already in the bag. And it involves a high degree of domestic risk. Crucially, the move is being timed to follow the Russian presidential elections in March, which Putin’s propaganda machine will turn into a vote of unblinking national confidence in their war leader.

The original assumption that Russians would remain apathetic about the invasion of Ukraine no longer holds. There are higher levels of engagement and anxiety, broad fears about a future that unites the West against Russia.

So, Putin has been breaking the news piecemeal to Russians that their society is heading for wholesale militarisation. First came a record increase in next year’s defence budget, which is set to swallow a third of the national budget. The last time Moscow spent so much on defence was in 1990, a year before the Soviet Union collapsed. It is being justified with the rhetoric of the Second World War, when the slogan justifying national sacrifice was: “Everything for the front, everything for victory.”

To pay for an enhanced military, child healthcare will be halved, and social spending and science funding put on the back burner. In return: more men, more ammunition, more firepower. Salaries have already been pushed up for volunteer soldiers, close to four times the monthly average in the provinces. They also get a month’s salary bonus on signing up and, if they are killed after five months’ service, their families can expect to become well-padded rouble millionaires. It could be an economically astute decision to get killed in action.

Putin’s victory, if it comes, will be on the basis of mass, the ability to replenish forces lost in attritional warfare.
It is perhaps his clinching advantage over the Ukrainians and one that comes only with general mobilisation; throwing convicts on to the battlefield is a cynical cost-benefit calculation that does no more than slow the pace of war.

But the Putin push is about more than manpower on the battlefield.

It’s about turning the economy into a war economy, nationalising the military supply chain, bringing state planning back into the defence sector. There hasn’t been such an upheaval in the military establishment since 1941 when, surprised by the German attack, Stalin uprooted the arms industry from vulnerable western Russia beyond the Urals into Siberia.

Here is how it could all begin to go wrong.

The draft is already creating severe labour shortages in the civilian economy. Now the military-industrial complex is suffering the same problem. Arms factories used to poach civilian workers because you could get exemption from the call-up. That is becoming more difficult: the expanding defence industry, which employs about two million engineers and other workers, is now short of 400,000.

The largest tank factory in the country, Uralvagonzavod, is again having to recruit convicts from penal colonies in the Sverdlovsk region.
Those who run these plants are becoming powerful figures, on a par with other securocrats such as the heads of the intelligence services. The old-school oligarchs, who shudder at the nationalisation process, are being marginalised.

It’s all about the war effort now, and only a very few are getting a hearing in the Kremlin.
If there is to be an internal shift against Putin it will come out of dogfighting between sections of the business elites, the security services and the new heavyweights in the arms industry.

And the trigger could come in the form of a sensational defeat on the battlefield that can’t just be pinned on a sleepy or burned-out general.
There has to be a catastrophic collapse in confidence in Putin as a military leader. A loss of faith in him not only on the part of elites but also on the streets and perhaps even in China.

Putin is gambling too much on a Trump presidency or at least on a more isolationist US administration.
Betting, too, on war fatigue in Europe.

A spring and summer assertion of military might, he seems to calculate, will lead to western pressure on Kiev to sign up to a patchwork peace. He thinks he is on the road to victory.

It is NATO’s duty to thwart him.

That means arms deliveries: long-range weapons to loosen Russia’s grip on Crimea, trouncing arms factories behind Russian lines. Also: the building of reserves capable of mounting imaginative ambushes and keeping Russia under pressure.

Drones, electronic warfare, training in combined operations - these are the ingredients that could cost the Russian army its reputation.
Above all, Putin must be convinced of the unwinability of what should become his last war.

Posted by: Geraint ap Iorwerth | Dec 6 2023 12:16 utc | 9

This is the American delusion and propaganda: “We spent $100 billion and severely harmed Russia. So, it’s a win.” 💪🏻🇺🇸

Actually, Russia defeated the combined forces of USA, Europe and NATO!

No amount of spin can hide that failure of US Empire. 🤡

America is doing exactly as expected and as in Afghanistan. Declaring victory and leaving.

Scott Ritter was asked what price will Biden admin pay for failure in Ukraine. He answered that none, since no American really cares about Ukraine. Hence the declaration of victory.

Posted by: unimperator | Dec 6 2023 12:19 utc | 10

It´s gonna be interesting how they use the wording.
Remember "evacuation" from Azovstal?

Giving up is not on the table - we need better words for that.

Posted by: Goingo | Dec 6 2023 12:19 utc | 11

Posted by: Geraint ap Iorwerth | Dec 6 2023 12:16 utc | 9

Would you like a side dish of fries with your dream steak?

Posted by: Newbie | Dec 6 2023 12:20 utc | 12

"It would have been easy for the Democrats to commit a few billions for border security."

No! Missing the point! "The Democrats" (i.e., the ruling class) wants extra money to accelerate the rate at which third-world refugees are imported into the country! The Republicans - at least some of them, still - seem to care about the nation a a whole, and they want the foreign invasion repelled, NOT accelerated.

It's not about money, it's about policy. Do we turn third-world refugees away, or do we spend money helping them come here, in order to drive wages and living standards down for the many, and rents and profits up for the few? And of course to play divide-and-conquer, to turn the nation into a squabbling mass of competing ethnic groups with no single national identity. That's a feature, too.

Russia may well be winning against Ukraine, but those on this post who are American working class, you are losing.

Posted by: TG | Dec 6 2023 12:22 utc | 13

'giving up and leave, as Biden did in Afghanistan' There was an agreement between US and Taliban, negotiated under the Trump administration, to leave until 1st of May. When Biden was 'elected' he immediatly stated that he would not honor that agreement. He wanted to stay and so he did. The Taliban refused any new talks and announced that on 1st of May liberation would start. So it did. The americans were overwhelmed by it's speed and full local support. They fled because there was nothing else for them to do. Biden did not leave Afghanistan as Trump wanted to do, Biden was kicked out. The only thing he left was a huge stockpile of weapons and a lot of dildos.

Posted by: fk | Dec 6 2023 12:24 utc | 14

Putin never negotiates about what he already has (in this case Crimea, south eastern territories captured so far).
If he even negotiates at all, it will be with the Americans (Nuland, Burns et co) and not with the Ukraian who at this point have no agency, and that will be about what which he does not yet have: Odessa, Nikolaev, Kharkov) and about a demilitarized, neutral status of the territory west of Don and north of Nikolaev/ Krivoy Rog, Odessa oblasts/regions.

Posted by: Malthus71 | Dec 6 2023 12:26 utc | 15

B has been silent on the new front opening in the Venezuela-Guyanan border. Madura has followed Putin’s lead and has annexed about a third of the territory of its neighbor.

Posted by: Zargo | Dec 6 2023 12:27 utc | 16

B has been silent on the new front opening in the Venezuela-Guyanan border. Madura has followed Putin’s lead and has annexed about a third of the territory of its neighbor.

Posted by: Zargo | Dec 6 2023 12:27 utc | 16

Interesting that you mention it, Venezuela’s claim to Guyana , was the us’s first major assertion against the official hegemon (GB), 130-125 years ago, I expect similar positions in 5 to 10 years but with the US in the receiving end .

Posted by: Newbie | Dec 6 2023 12:37 utc | 17

The wife smacked the table with her hard heeled shoe, you leave that lover of yours and come back this instant! And US said hasta la vista baby, it was fun while it lasted. So Israel and the US back together. Ukraine sits with the baby.

Posted by: G wiltek | Dec 6 2023 12:41 utc | 18

Posted by: Geraint ap Iorwerth | Dec 6 2023 12:16 utc | 9

Well, someone's in for a shock...

Posted by: irish al | Dec 6 2023 12:48 utc | 19

Cut through the dull ramblings of some commentators here and you'll see that others have been stating this for months.

In fact, this was a position that the US took last year; Biden has stated several times that the decision to negotiate was for Ukraine to make. But to avoid accusations of appeasement to the Russians, the US were explicitly implicit. For example, they were clear that there would be no NATO membership, no timetable to NATO membership for Ukraine whilst it remained at war with Russia. So it followed, negotiate peace with Russia and then we'll talk about membership.

But this didn't work. With the guns, money and celebrity endorsements still rolling in, Zelensky wanted more war.

So now the Americans are performing some clownish spectacle where they have to block their own support to Ukraine under the guise of some Government funding deadlock, just so they don't have to directly tell the Ukrainians that the game is up and they need to negotiate.

As the RAND study correctly identifies, the downside to withdrawing support to force negotiations is that the Russians may see this as an opportunity to push forward. So the US Government is doing some 'will they, won't they' dance on the funding in the hope it will keep the Russians in check.

Did the US ever really want or expect the Ukrainian counteroffensive to succeed? This remains to be seen. Supplying Ukrainians with missiles that allowed them to recently target a grouping of parked KA-52 Russian helicopters after they'd already been used to decimate the Ukrainian counterattack suggests not.

Posted by: Pat Bateman | Dec 6 2023 12:52 utc | 20

Madura has followed Putin’s lead and has annexed about a third of the territory of its neighbor

There was poll, nothing more.
Also it's two thirds of the territory, not one. Also this territory has always been claimed by Venezuela. Up until 1962 Guyana was a british colony. In 1967 an agreement was reached with Venezuela but stalled by the empire. Venezuela now only wants the agreement to be honored.
The reason Venezuela was forced to take some action is that Exxon corporation wants to extract oil and has asked the ICC to make a verdict about the territory. The ICC being a US front end, it is clear they will claim the territory is Guyana's. Gyuana is a de facto US colony.

Posted by: fk | Dec 6 2023 13:03 utc | 21

Did the US ever really want or expect the Ukrainian counteroffensive to succeed? This remains to be seen. Supplying Ukrainians with missiles that allowed them to recently target a grouping of parked KA-52 Russian helicopters after they'd already been used to decimate the Ukrainian counterattack suggests not.

Posted by: Pat Bateman | Dec 6 2023 12:52 utc | 20

Yes, they really expected it to succeed, drive to Mariupol/Melitopol and cut Russian force in half and cause Moscow maidan. IIRC the 10 Nato/nazi brigades dedicated to the task were built up with nearly 500 tanks (of which perhaps 200 western), 1100 AFVs, 400 artillery pieces, huge number of drones and NASAMs or IRIS-T embedded to the force.

I said in late 2022 that since the ex-Soviet equipment ran out, the game of playing with "casino money" is nearly up and US can't replace all the Soviet equipment Ukraine had organically and got from Poland, Czech and other Warsaw pact countries. That is also why F-16 was never given and will never be given, it was all fun and dandy playing with the 90 "free" MiG-29 and SU- fighters.

Posted by: unimperator | Dec 6 2023 13:06 utc | 22

Chicago Bob 5

They need that hardware for the ongoing genocide they are supporting.

Posted by: KingCobra | Dec 6 2023 13:10 utc | 23

It's not about money, it's about policy. Do we turn third-world refugees away, or do we spend money helping them come here […]

Posted by: TG | Dec 6 2023 12:22 utc | 13


Of course the idea that we should stop plundering destroying their countries — which would eliminate the creation of refugees — is anathema to both (right) wings of the Property Party.

Posted by: malenkov | Dec 6 2023 13:16 utc | 24

Will Zelensky be Diem’d ?

Posted by: Exile | Dec 6 2023 13:16 utc | 25

Will Zelensky be Diem’d ?

Posted by: Exile | Dec 6 2023 13:16 utc | 25


And will it be televised? They were so thoughtful to televise Gaddafi’s execution, after all.

Posted by: malenkov | Dec 6 2023 13:18 utc | 26

It would have been easy for the Democrats to commit a few billions for border security


Echoing another commenter, you don't really understand US politics. Most of the ruling class, and 100 percent of Democrats, are fully committed to the death of the United States via mass immigration, both legal and illegal. It is anathema for them to defend the country at all, and to increase border security would be like a normal person strangling his mother.

Posted by: onetwothree | Dec 6 2023 13:26 utc | 27

When it comes to the military stuff I regard myself as the questing amateur and "b" and the commenters here as the real deal. So also on Colonel Lang's old site, where a similar debate on the rights and wrongs of the Ukrainian war is being conducted.

It was therefore encouraging that a summary of my own personal view of this war, one that I have held since the start of the SMO, was not found fault with here. Dr Richard North, whose blog in England I follow, has now issued his verdict on the Ukrainian "counter-offensive". It matches the view I find here and I therefore re-submitted that summary to his site. The italicised sections are quotations taken from Dr North's article on the subject:-

"That notwithstanding, I have maintained from the start that the forces available to the Ukrainians were insufficient to achieve the all-important “shock” effects, saturating the defences and thereby overwhelming them."

The NATO advisers believed that the Russian army was demoralised and would crumble. They made a pig's ear of the "counter-offensive" and there are indications that the Ukrainian professionals knew that all the "table top exercises" the excited clowns in NATO had conducted were valueless. The meeting between Zaluzhnyi and Milley/Cavoli/Radakin showed who was driving this forlorn hope on - NATO - and , my personal view, showed that the Ukrainian professionals knew it was amateur night but had no choice but to comply.

Our generals will now blame the debacle on the Ukrainians. The Ukrainians will blame us and with more justice. We saw here the Falkenhayn scenario played out to the full at cruel cost in lives. The Ukrainian PBI, in my personal view again the finest and most courageous soldiers in Europe, have born most of that cost.

".. the New Year may bring pressures for a settlement that are hard for Zelensky to resist."

Dr North, I don't think there will be one. I simply don't see how all this talk of a Ukrainian "peace settlement" can come to anything. It looks like the West just talking to itself.

After Istanbul it seemed clear that the only negotiations with Kiev would be on the terms of capitulation. Now, after all that has occurred, that must be even more the case. Anything else would lead to political instability in Russia itself. The Russians have now put too much into the conflict.. Anything like a Minsk 3 is now out of reach and has been since at least the early days of the SMO.

Those Bandera monuments are going to have to come down. Surety against drone or rocket attacks from remnant Ukraine has to be achieved. Cross border raids and sabotage attempts from remnant Ukraine have to be stopped: I recollect articles in the American press asserting that the Ukrainians are being trained for and assisted in such attempts by the West and presumably the Russians will have seen those articles too. And there must be no danger that remnant Ukraine can once more be armed and supported by NATO and once more built up into a security threat to Russia, that including of course the Russians of the Donbass.

How that is to be done is immaterial but there can be no "settlement" short of that. Putin likes deals that arrive at some sort of accommodation - he's always wary of pushing thing too far - but there is no wriggle room here for such accommodation. If the stated aims of the SMO are not achieved then his position within Russia becomes untenable.

Expecting anything short of that is as foolish as imagining that the Russian or our forces in 1944 had suddenly said "Well, we've done enough now. Let's leave it at that." The peoples of the various countries would not have stood for it. So here. After the blood and sacrifice of the last year and more the people of Russia will stand for nothing less than final and complete achievement of the SMO goals.

There might be wriggle room in deciding what is to happen with the Western investments in Ukraine. Those are now substantial. A good deal of property in the country seems to be owned one way or another by Western interests. If there is a way of safeguarding Russian security interests without wholesale dispossession of those Western interests then maybe that way will be found. Those Western commercial and financial interests are not to be easily challenged.

But it's difficult to imagine a remnant Ukraine effectively under full Russian control and the Western investors still receiving a return on their investments. Particularly in the case of farmland, the people of remnant Ukraine are going to have a difficult enough time getting back to some sort of normal while still encumbered with such a liability. Much of their country was sold from underneath them to Western interests in the past few years and they will not find it easy if it remains sold.

Such details aside, the shape of the post war position is already fixed. Russia will absorb as much of the old Ukraine as it finds appropriate and will ensure remnant Ukraine is de-nazified and cannot again become a security threat. Anything else and Putin's stay in power is likely to be brief.

Of course we do not yet know how that post war position will be reached and do not know to what extent reaching it will entail accommodation with the West. But that it will be reached is past doubt and has been so since Istanbul. My personal view is that it was past doubt since the start of the SMO - I still don't regard the various "peace negotiations" in the early days as more than gestures from both sides - but that view is not generally accepted and whether it is or not is irrelevant here.

The Ukrainian question settled, is that it? Does it all stop there?

I can't see how it can. The 2021 Russian European security demands are still on the table.


I submitted that argument elsewhere and it is relevant here. As you say - "Now we have to look to the political fallout of the failure ..." Those consequences for Europe, for us as well of course, will not only be political. Should the Russians care to they can bring the Scholz/Stoltenberg dream of a remilitarised Europe come crashing down in short order and the European economy with it. What we're now doing is waiting to see whether they will.


Posted by: English Outsider | Dec 6 2023 13:28 utc | 28

LOL Debs still trying to blame Republicans when Ukraine is all about the Democrats and Biden.
I don't believe Ukraine won't eventually get money, but it is ludicrous to try and assign ownership of Ukrainian war funding to the Republicans.
For all the blather from McConnell and Graham - the votes to give arms and money to Ukraine have been mostly Democrat.
Democrats control the Senate even now.

Posted by: c1ue | Dec 6 2023 13:32 utc | 29

Posted by: malenkov | Dec 6 2023 13:18 utc | 26

“And will it be televised?”

Nah, that particular highlight will be reserved for Putin.

Posted by: Membrum Virile | Dec 6 2023 13:34 utc | 30

Just going through stages of grief.
Shelenski still in Denial
Biden and co ( The Bankers/Rand) in Bargaining mode
Zaluzni (if he still alive,still haven’t seen a live meet of him) pushing Acceptance
Aristovich and the script writers Grieving for having chosen the wrong road that has killed or maimed a million plus.

One thing is certain NONE of them will eve be safe from their fellow countrymen and women no matter where they go. Neither will what they consider is their wealth and families. Much of that will come about as soon as any left over meat gets home and they go look for the bastards who rounded them up and sent them to die.

Shelenski if he had any agency and balls and actually cared for Ukraine would CANCEL all the land deals that he has made with the Money people and tell them to do a Musk.

But being a whore of Empire he will do no such thing and go and live the remainder of his life as a recluse in some Saudi Mansion in the Desert where he can be safe.
The Finks will demand that their contracts are honoured by the Russians, and Rump states.
Let’s see if they get away with it again!

Ukraine rumps only sane choice is to hold referendums in the various states and let the people decide whether they want to be part of Russia or some European old owners ‘Slave Ukranians) or as neutral independents. Most will end up as labourers in Europes chicken farms and cleaners and arse wipers for the seniors. They’ll be the criminal gangs for the next generation.

That would lead to Odessa and the whole Black Sea coast being Russian or Neutral.
De Nazification would be a priority and Russophobia punished.
And of course no Natzios missiles on the independence lands.

As was always going to be the only option that didn’t rely on the dumb old martial aristo families of England and America and 5+1 Eyed Zion empires wet dreams going back centuries. Well done those tossers, they have managed to repeat the failures of Napoleon, Hitler and the Light Brigades Charge - some scores to settle with those bastards.
I wonder if Novichok is actually real? They better always be washing their hands after handling their (door) knobs. Always washing, like trying to remove some indelible blood spot.

Posted by: DunGroanin | Dec 6 2023 13:37 utc | 31

The Ukrainian Civil War was and remains a sideshow to the global struggle

Moscow’s war aims is roll back of NATO
Washington’s war aim is breakup of RF

Posted by: Exile | Dec 6 2023 13:54 utc | 32

Look at the rate of change of territory in 2023 in this chart:

That is stale...mate.

Posted by: Anonymous | Dec 6 2023 13:57 utc | 33

Posted by: malenkov | Dec 6 2023 13:18 utc | 26

“And will it be televised?”

Nah, that particular highlight will be reserved for Putin.

Posted by: Membrum Virile | Dec 6 2023 13:34 utc | 30


Don’t hold your breath. :-))))

Posted by: malenkov | Dec 6 2023 14:09 utc | 34

Nah, that particular highlight will be reserved for Putin.

Like Castro eh. Apparently there is a limit to Maerican power. It would behoove you to realize it. Who am I kidding, you're an imbecile shitposting.

Posted by: Doctor Eleven | Dec 6 2023 14:12 utc | 35

It doesn’t matter which “option” Biden would “prefer”.
All this is hogwash and a stall. The U.S./NATO will never raise the white flag and wholly capitulate.
And whole capitulation is the only “agreement” Russia has in mind.

Until Ukraine collapses, Russia will keep petal to the metal.

“In June, Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a law that also denounced the treaty, saying that Ukraine lost its status as a littoral state of the Sea of Azov when Russia—illegally—annexed the Ukrainian regions of Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson and Zaporizhzhia in September 2022.”

The Sea of Azov is also important for Russia's continued occupation of the annexed Crimean peninsula for logistical reasons, he said.

"With Ukraine still controlling access to the Isthmus of Perekop, the Sea of Azov and the Kerch Strait play a role in connecting mainland Russia with Crimea and allows the resupply of Russian troops based there," Coffey wrote, adding that throughout the military history of the region, the Sea of Azov has played an important role for resupplying troops in Crimea.“

There will be no “peace settlement” until ALL of Ukraines strategic threats to Russia are eliminated.

It’s simply easier for Russia to keep fighting another year or two for collapse than settle for anything less than complete security since not a single agreement by the West can be trusted.

Posted by: Trubind1 | Dec 6 2023 14:13 utc | 36

Our source from the OP said that Zelensky has been in a terrible mood for a week now, is aggressive and practically does not accept anyone, all the work is supervised by Andrey Ermak.

The President is disappointed by the position of the West and publications in the media, which discredited his work and destroyed his image.
Our source from the OP said that Zelensky did not speak to the senators because of his bad mood and disappointment.

The President at that time already knew that the vote in Congress on aid to Ukraine would fail and refused to communicate; he was not influenced by Ermak’s persuasion over the phone; Bankova’s technologists had to urgently launch an anti-crisis in the media.
Against the backdrop of massively negative publications in the Western press, Bankovaya and the media department couldn’t come up with anything better to stop the negativity than the good old excuse - it’s all the Kremlin’s tricks.

This happens when those who came to take over the budgets and steal money get into management, but they don’t know how to work. (They recruited mistresses and lovers and wonder why everything is about @b@li - the source comments on the situation with the media in Ukraine).

And so, the Center for Countering Disinformation under the National Security and Defense Council announces the preparation of a fake campaign against the leadership of Ukraine in the foreign press.

“They are prepared by foreign journalists who have experience working in Russia, in particular, during the beginning of Putin’s power. The purpose of such actions is a split in Ukrainian society,” the message says.

It is stated that such articles will be published in English-language media.

We have been inside the fact that Russian private information companies work with the Western press for a long time. They even wrote about them. But our officials themselves admitted that they lost the external case.

And we warned these fools that this would happen, but Ermak, Zarivnaya and Podolyak continued to write off the money.
Let us add that both sides “order” publications in the Western press.

On April 17, it was reported that the OP is aware that the Western press is beginning to turn away from Kyiv.

It’s better to let the media department of the OP tell how they drowned Klitschko with information, and tried to promote General Syrsky as a counterbalance to Zaluzhny, in order to later remove the commander in chief.

The entire media department worked for the political interests of ZeErmak, not the country. The guys were busy with intrigue and internal cleansing under the guise of war.

Posted by: Down South | Dec 6 2023 14:16 utc | 37

Well the real problem for US (other than sputtering, rainbows and ponies economy) is China-Wan.

The US has 100x more invested in Taiwan than Ukraine and China is not going to back-down any more than was Russia on Ukraine. US wanted war to stimulate its weak/rotten economy, but is about to get more than it bargained for. Of course China does not want war (as Russia did not) so they will look for ways to encourage US to save face and find peaceful resolution. But what are the chances that that will happen.

In all likelihood there will soon be a change of leadership in US (unless they prefer to have Biden stuffed and mounted). So if it is Trump (I find that hard to believe) he will have same problem where his inclinations (avoidance of war) run counter to those of the permanent state. So they will have to create lots of havoc for him. Some of the problems with Trump include that he has no compass and he is prone to sudden and dramatic measures for purpose of ingratiating himself with those in control.

Posted by: jared | Dec 6 2023 14:19 utc | 38

Posted by: Doctor Eleven | Dec 6 2023 14:12 utc | 35

Nothing to do with american power, or americans. Traditional way power changes hands in russia. Check out history, before you start name calling.

Ok, ‘televised’ part is not traditional, but I’m guessing this time it will be seen beneficial to be shown on tv. We shall see.

Posted by: Membrum Virile | Dec 6 2023 14:20 utc | 39

Ukraine will be refunded to keep grift going through 2024
(Started pool: mine is 44 Billion…) Biden & Co. need election campaign funds.

Of course Ukraine will still collapse. But Russia needs to finish off army. Grabbing Kharkiv & Odessa probably depends on new governance coming in, if Nazi leaders Zaluzny & Kitchlo are the “new picks”… definitely whole collapse necessary. Both Zaluzny & Zelensky are bonafide War Criminals… but Zaluzny much more into the Hail Hitler regime with his 2 Bandera musks in his office.

Posted by: Trubind1 | Dec 6 2023 14:23 utc | 40

Will Zelensky be Diem’d ?

Posted by: Exile | Dec 6 2023 13:16 utc | 25

There is only three ways to remove Zelensky.

1) if he holds elections a coalition of opposition politicians are being positioned to win.

In the fight between Zelensky and Zaluzhny, Klitschko actually supported the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Thus, the mayor of Kyiv called the decline in the rating of Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky “payback for mistakes made” and agreed with the words of the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valery Zaluzhny about the “deadlock” situation at the front.

Klitschko expressed the opinion that Zelensky’s rating has been declining recently, partly due to the large amount of information that “did not correspond to reality.” According to Klitschko, people see who is effective and who is not. He noted that Ukrainians began to wonder why their country was not better prepared for a military conflict, why Zelensky denied the approach of hostilities until the last moment, and how the Russian military reached Kiev so quickly.

Klitschko also emphasized that Zaluzhny, speaking about the “deadlock” on the contact line, told the truth that people “sometimes do not want to hear.” He believes that some politicians unfairly criticized the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine for his words.

As we see, the opposition against Zelensky is gaining momentum - according to insider information, a real opposition force is now gathering, which will be ready to confront Bankova.

Negotiations are already underway with the Americans, since nothing will work without their support—Zelensky’s “kvartalovites” have firmly occupied key ministries and law enforcement agencies. However, the confrontation promises to be “heated” - the head of the OP Ermak will not give up the National Bank, the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Defense - the three main mechanisms for pumping Western aid - without a fight.

2) If he doesn’t hold elections to avoid 1) his powers automatically expire on 31 March 2024 and those powers are transferred to the Speaker.

Our source in the OP said that the Office of the President analyzed the format with the termination of Zelensky’s powers on March 31, 2024, when he loses legitimacy. According to the Constitution, the powers of the President until the next elections are transferred to the Head of the Verkhovna Rada, which could cause turbulence in power and cause temptation for Stefanchuk, but Bankova has taken precautions against such a scenario.

The speaker of parliament is completely under control and must ignore this rule, otherwise he will be removed the next day, and the tame SBU will accuse him of attempting a coup.

3) If he tries to seize power trying to avoid 1 & 2 there will be a coup/Maidan 3.

Posted by: Down South | Dec 6 2023 14:28 utc | 41

RE DunGroanin | Dec 6 2023 13:37 utc | 31

Enjoyed post !!
Yeah, I had forgotten about Zaluznys “revived” head wound… so yeah, who knows who that guy parading around is??

Posted by: Trubind1 | Dec 6 2023 14:31 utc | 42

B, your point is really excellent.

And as we enter election year, I believe there is incentive to keep Ukraine out of the news.
And there are many people concerned about the direction of US economy (inflation and weak wages) - so send money to other countries is not a winning strategy.

Posted by: jared | Dec 6 2023 14:33 utc | 43

Nothing to do with american power, or americans. Traditional way power changes hands in russia. Check out history, before you start name calling.

Posted by: Membrum Virile | Dec 6 2023 14:20 utc | 39


Strange, the last time a Russian leader was assassinated by his own court was 1801, unless the rumors about Stalin’s demise are true. (Aleksandr II was a garden-variety terror victim.)

Posted by: malenkov | Dec 6 2023 14:38 utc | 44

“Our source from the OP said that Zelensky has been in a terrible mood for a week now, is aggressive and practically does not accept anyone, all the work is supervised by Andrey Ermak.”


Somebody messing with his blow?

Posted by: malenkov | Dec 6 2023 14:41 utc | 45

Ukraine's army will lose fighting capability long before the US loses its desire to defeat Russia, and by defeat I mean the total breakdown of Russia as a functioning country. That's why Russia has to continue until the West is so exhausted that it finally engages reality and admits that Russia is a peer nation that it must respect. That will require that the West go through a whole lot of pain, enough pain to spread from Europe to the US. It's hard to imagine what that will take, but $8 gallon gas and food shortages might move that along. When the US stops with its ridiculous moral posturing, as if it was a superhero meting out justice around the world, we'll know that it is starting to move in that direction. Seems like a long way off, and a lot can happen getting to that point, including a big bang.

There will be no “peace settlement” until ALL of Ukraines strategic threats to Russia are eliminated.

It’s simply easier for Russia to keep fighting another year or two for collapse than settle for anything less than complete security since not a single agreement by the West can be trusted.

Posted by: Trubind1 | Dec 6 2023 14:13 utc | 36

If Ukraine is pushed to the negotiating table, they will find out Russia's specific demands, which will be far more than Ukraine or the US is willing to concede. The war will resume with Ukraine in slow retreat. One issue that I haven't seen brought up is what happens in the Black Sea after a peace settlement. If Turkey was to reopen the Strait of Dardanelles I expect the US will once again want to send US warships into the Black Sea. Can't imagine Russia allowing that to happen, after all this. The Black Sea will have to be off-limits for US provocations.

Posted by: Mike R | Dec 6 2023 14:41 utc | 46

Russia has played this out very well, except for the loss of all the good patriotic troopers, but there was no choice. They have kept everything low keyed and haven't taken enough new territory in order to get Washington excited and thus the money is drying up. They achieved their Ukrainian military de-escalation and destruction without moving much. Had Russia rushed into Odecca I think that Washington's reaction would have been more weapons and money , but now that the party seems to be on the decline for Kiev, the American people will go long with the less funding and lose interest.

Russia, in the near future,will go for more territory in Odecca and Dnepr R. Areas, and when Washington tries to go back to escalation - they won't be able to do much unless Nato has a final death wish. Russia has certainly surprised many of us with their slow patient chess game. Time will tell. Thanks

Posted by: GMC | Dec 6 2023 14:46 utc | 47

Interesting take in Mercouris podcast. Zaluzhny according to Wapo would have asked Austin 17 (!) million shells and 350-400 billion for winning back. EX ABSURDO Z. shows the Americans the impossibility for winning back.

Posted by: Teraspol | Dec 6 2023 14:47 utc | 48

"Of course the idea that we should stop plundering destroying their countries — which would eliminate the creation of refugees — is anathema to both (right) wings of the Property Party.

Posted by: malenkov | Dec 6 2023 13:16 utc | 242

Precisely. This is not exactly quantum mechanics level in terms of being able to understand the dynamics. It is basic supply and demand. Cut off the demand and the supply will evaporate and disappear.

And to do that is dead easy. Jungle Joe Borrell's 'Garden' - ie the Collective West - needs to do two things:

1. Stop bombing the shit out of other Countries. It just creates a refugee demand;

2. Stop preventing other Countries and their peoples from developing and progressing by exporting excess fiat produced capital in order to re-repatriate excess value that belongs to those peoples - ie. stop stealing other peoples resources in a zero-sum policy which impoverishes entire continents and their populace in order to make a few billionaires into trillionaires. Because this also creates a refugee demand.

Ultimately there are two solutions to the refugee problem which inevitably arises from Privatising (ie Piratising) everything on the planet to benefit a small minority of sociopathic and psychopathic Western Oligarchs and their local comprador lacky's:

A. Mass culling of all those not an Oligarch.

B. Mass culling of all those who are Oligarchs - along with their various entourages.

Posted by: Dave Hansell | Dec 6 2023 14:48 utc | 49

From a telegram post. Tried the link yesterday but it wouldn't post. Palace intrigue. Cannot vouch for it:

Who delivered the poison?

A couple of days ago, the Ukrainian media space, which has long been accustomed to everything and takes the latest corruption and criminal scandals for granted, managed to shake things up. The reason was the news that unknown persons tried to poison the wife of the head of the Main Intelligence Directorate (GUR) of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry, Kirill Budanov, Marianna. On November 28, official representative of the department Andrei Yusov said that this was true. Society responded with two questions: how and who?

Unprecedented security measures were applied to the “first lady” of Ukrainian intelligence - Marianna was constantly near her husband and lived in his office. However, the attacker achieved his goal. Almost. Budanova was hospitalized, but survived and after a short time began to recover.

In her body, doctors found traces of heavy metals that could not have gotten there by accident.

Marianna and Kirill Budanov
Tests of several other GUR employees showed the same thing, but their symptoms were either much weaker or absent altogether. As they said at the hospital, Marianna Budanova’s body was less prepared to meet the toxic substance than that of male agents. It is much more likely that she was the target of the poisoner and received the largest dose, while the rest suffered “tangentially.” But how could a would-be killer deliver poison to such a height in the system of Ukrainian power? We analyzed several versions and came to extremely interesting conclusions, which we will share below.

The backstory takes us to the early days of the SMO. On February 28, 2022, the first round of Russian-Ukrainian negotiations took place in Belarus. Subsequently, President Vladimir Putin shared the details - the Ukrainian side was ready to compromise and accept Moscow’s conditions, which would have saved many thousands of lives, but the Western curators of the Kiev regime, represented by British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, intervened in time, and, according to the participant negotiations of David Arakhamia, called on Zelensky to follow the principle of “war until the last Ukrainian.” Denis Kireev, a banker who was the first deputy chairman of the board of Oschadbank in 2010-2014, unexpectedly became a member of the Ukrainian delegation. It became known only later that at the same time he was an intelligence officer, one of the persons closest to Budanov in the Main Intelligence Directorate, who received tasks personally from the head of the department. And this time Kireev, having joined the Ukrainian delegation, acted at the request of his boss. At first he didn’t want to - previously his tasks included establishing connections both in Ukraine and in Russia, so his trip to Belarus in this capacity could be perceived extremely ambiguously. Budanov himself agreed with his arguments, and subsequently told the media that by sending Kireev to negotiations, he had actually exposed him as an agent of the special services, but did so because the situation required it. However, no one spoke officially about where the banker worked. Therefore, immediately after his appearance in the negotiating group, rumors spread through high offices in Ukraine - Russia had sent its own spy who would push for the result it wanted during the negotiations. Suspicions also reached the SBU. And there they decided to act.

Ukrainian delegation at Russian-Ukraian

It is not known whether anyone suggested it or whether political instinct worked, but after the first meeting Kireev felt something was wrong and wanted to leave the game. However, the boss did not allow it. On March 3, the spy-banker went to the second round of negotiations, this time to Brest. Returning to Kiev on March 5, he already knew that things could take a bad turn, and therefore warned his guards that he could be detained by SBU officers and that there was no need to resist them. And so it happened. Kireev was “captured” right at the station. An hour and a half later he was found dead, and a few hours later the SBU reported on the “liquidation of a Russian spy.” Deputies of the Verkhovna Rada took exactly the same tone. The results of the service’s work were highly appreciated by Alexey Goncharenko (from Petro Poroshenko’s European Solidarity party) and former deputy of the Servant of the People party Alexander Dubinsky, who was considered a man of the oligarch Igor Kolomoisky. None of them had any doubts that Kireev had committed high treason.

But very soon tar was added to the barrel of honey. GUR's reaction came in. Budanov was furious. First, he addressed Zelensky personally, demanding that criminal cases be opened against the SBU officers involved in Kireev’s murder. But the head of intelligence did not stop there, calling on Western curators for help so that they could put pressure on the President of Ukraine and ensure that cases were initiated. Wanting to reinforce his words, Budanov gave an interview to Radio Liberty, in which he stated that the names of all guilty SBU officers had been established and they would not escape punishment. And the first person to be publicly announced was the head of the counterintelligence department of the SBU, Alexander Poklad. It was he who was responsible for searching the department for persons who collaborated with the Russian side. Budanov reported that Kireev received a call from Poklad’s office right before his trip to Belarus, but did not provide details of the conversation.

At first, Budanov seemed to have little success. Kireev was officially recognized as an intelligence officer who died while performing a certain task; he was buried with honors and posthumously awarded a medal “for his exceptional contribution to the defense of state sovereignty and state security.” At the same time, the Ukrainian media began to spread rumors that the murdered man had almost decided the outcome of the entire conflict, allegedly warning Kiev about the impending landing of the Russian Armed Forces at the Gostomel airfield. At the same time, there were no visible legal consequences for either Poklad or anyone else. No one began to give public comments to the SBU. The State Bureau of Investigation decided to follow the same path. This seems to be the end of the incident. However, in July 2022, the SBU was suddenly shaken by a loud resignation. No less than the head of the department, Igor Bakanov, was fired - with the wording “for improper performance of official duties.” According to Zelensky, he made this decision in the wake of a large number of cases in which Bakanov’s subordinates engaged in espionage for Russia or interfered with the work of other law enforcement agencies. However, almost all the participants in Kireev’s murder remained in their places, so it was too early for the GUR to celebrate the victory. The conflict between the two departments continued to smolder, reaching the level of internal intrigue.

In October 2023, another such intrigue, the authorship of which, of course, belonged to Budanov personally, led to the dismissal of the deputy chairman of the SBU, Anatoly Sandursky, who oversaw the service’s cooperation with partners in the military-technical sphere. The order signed by Zelensky did not indicate the reason for the dismissal, but the immediate reason, obviously, was Budanov’s appeal to the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine (NABU). However, it was more of an excuse than the reason. The participation of an official in a corruption scandal could not in any way lead to his dismissal in the modern Ukrainian state, especially since the figure of Sandursky was not the target of attacks in the media. And the trail behind him was such that in Ukraine he only had further career advancement ahead - the organization of sabotage and terrorist attacks on Russian territory, the murder of the chief of staff of the LPR People's Militia Oleg Anashchenko. And one more interesting fact - simultaneously with the dismissal of Sandursky, as reported, a secret “sixth directorate” was created in the SBU, whose tasks were to establish connections with the British intelligence MI6. Both of these events, if considered together, give reason to assume that Budanov not only “removed” a personal enemy, but in general was able to ensure that the SBU in the future (at least in terms of cooperation with foreign partners) was largely dependent on GUR. The SBU, naturally, did not agree with this turn of events and decided to “remove” Budanov himself. His wife was the first to be targeted.

But if everything was exactly like this, then the question still remains - who? According to my sources in the Office of the President of Ukraine, Dmitry Usov, deputy head of the Main Intelligence Directorate, was directly involved in the poisoning. Previously, he worked for several years in the SBU, including as deputy head of the main department of the service for the Autonomous Republic of Crimea (in those years when such an administrative-territorial unit no longer existed within Ukraine). He was also called the curator of the Main Investigation Department of the SBU. Having gone to work at the Main Intelligence Directorate, according to rumors, he became the “overseer ” for Budanov from the Office of the President of Ukraine, reporting to Andrey Ermak. And even after the start of the SMO, he was engaged in non-public negotiations between the parties to the conflict, heading the coordination center for the exchange of prisoners. In particular, in May 2022, he oversaw the surrender of the Azovstal garrison.

Dmitry Usov
Interestingly, Usov had previously maintained some connections with the Russian side. Thus, in Ukrainian sources there were even accusations against him that he actually helped the FSB of the Russian Federation to put pressure on individual representatives of Ukrainian business doing business on the peninsula after it became part of Russia. Be that as it may, he had considerable experience in participating in behind-the-scenes intrigues. In the fall of 2023, such a person would be perfect for the role of the one who will collect all the necessary information about the GUR, allowing him to organize the delivery of poison to someone from his superiors.

However, the authorship of the idea most likely belonged to Poklad. The man who remained in his position after the story with Kireev and at the same time was actually one of Budanov’s main enemies, of course, was more interested than others in his fall. An interesting fact - back in August 2023, a number of experts suggested that it was Poklad who could head the SBU after Malyuk left this position - the OP had long been suspected of disloyalty to Zelensky, so the chair under him is not so strong. But a transfer to such a high position must be earned by something more than just loyalty. In November 2023, the conflict between Zelensky and the commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valery Zaluzhny reached an almost critical phase; rumors about an impending coup sounded so loud that they almost ceased to be rumors. But together with Zaluzhny, Western media have repeatedly named Budanov as one of the key contenders for Zelensky’s place. When shaking began in Kiev, enterprising people in the SBU realized that it was time to act. As a result, Poklad, with the help of Usov, tried to play a combination in order to simultaneously get rid of his dangerous enemy and stand out on Bankova street, strengthening Zelensky’s position by eliminating one of his main competitors.

Be that as it may, this version looks much more presentable than attempts to find a “Russian trace” in what happened. In Ukraine, hardly anyone would have dared to attempt to send Budanov himself to the next world, even in the SBU or the army top - in the conditions of interdepartmental squabbling, this could have been a death sentence. But poisoning his wife, thereby provoking a public scandal, a witch hunt and purges in the GUR itself, would be enough for Budanov’s positions to collapse beyond the possibility of restoration. That is why the investigation into the poisoning of Marianna Budanova, in which the SBU must also take part, can be called a classic example when investigators can expose themselves during the investigation.

Posted by: the pessimist | Dec 6 2023 14:49 utc | 50

Putin’s war plan for 2024 is a giant gamble
Switching Russia’s economy to all-out conflict in Ukraine requires urgent response from West
Roger Boyes THE TIMES 5 DECEMBER 2023

Yes indeed Putin is taking a giant gamble, but it is one forced on him and the odds are strongly in his favor. Russia does not want to control the western part of Ukraine, and it is essentially certain Russia can annex with success by one means or another the Russian speaking and ethnic Russian eastern third. Part of that has already been accomplished in the Donbas region.

If I were Russian, I would be deeply disappointed if Russia failed to annex the eastern third of Ukraine. It is a good, useful region, semi industrial and with a healthy agricultural sector. Additionally, if Russia doesn't annex the rest and the agreement incapable west fails to keep with any agreement, it would reduce the hostile area by a third. The remaining two thirds of Ukraine would not be as wealthy as much of the resources and industry are in the eastern third. The western part would be deprived of about a third of its population, and it would be land locked. No importing military goods by way of the Black Sea. Not an ideal solution for Russia, but a desirable one that worst case would produce a much weaker enemy that would require endless subsidy from the political west. And it would be an all but risk free outcome, excessive even to call it a gamble. More like a slam dunk.

Posted by: Jmaas | Dec 6 2023 14:49 utc | 51

Previous post from "UKR LEAKS" Dec 5 2023

Posted by: the pessimist | Dec 6 2023 14:52 utc | 52

Traditional way power changes hands in russia.

I have Khrushchev Remembers, his autobiographical memoirs on a shelf behind me next to several books making a complete history of the Romanoffs. History disagrees with your naked assertions. As I said, moronic shitposting.

Posted by: Doctor Eleven | Dec 6 2023 14:54 utc | 53

No, no nope.
USofA wont do it. IT is equivalent to the empire continue to play games with a russian HALF victory.
No halves.
Never should be allowed.

Posted by: augusto | Dec 6 2023 14:55 utc | 54

This talk of negotiations baffles me. Russia's minimum demands will amount to unconditional surrender of the Ukraine. The Ukrainian police, under Russian supervision, will have to round up and incarcerate Nazis and other war criminals. Again under Russian supervision the Ukrainians will have to rewrite their constitution. School textbooks will have to be rewritten. Every monument, street name, bridge, geographical feature, and whatnot will have to be renamed to something that doesn't glorify nazism. All contact with NATO and USUKEU will have to be supervised by adults (Russians). The Ukrainians will have to swap their American leash for a Russian one until the Ukrainians grow up enough to earn Russia's trust again.

There will be no Minsk-III. The Russians may be slow and naive at times, but they are not stupid.

Posted by: William Gruff | Dec 6 2023 14:58 utc | 55

Posted by: GMC | Dec 6 2023 14:46 utc | 47

Russia will eventually take Zaporozhye. Whether they will go across west toward Krivoy Rog is a question but it seems a natural path toward Odessa.

The other potential strategy is simply maintain everything as is, since Nato is now shipping children from Lwow to the front. That is equivalent to Ukraine disappearing as a state.

If Nato mafia is thrown out of Kiev, then the thing may actually freeze to curernt, but wouldn't hold my breath.

Posted by: unimperator | Dec 6 2023 15:02 utc | 56

Russia’s Modular Fighter Su-75 Looks To ‘Checkmate’ Boeing, Lockheed; UAC Patents Landmark Innovation!

Russia’s United Aircraft Corporation (UAC) has patented what appears to be a modular variant of the Su-75 Checkmate single-engine light stealth fighter with an interchangeable cockpit.

According to TASS, the patent documents describe the concept aircraft design as a “single-engine tactical aircraft with low radar signature.”

The patented concept logically splits the aircraft into a fuselage base part and a fuselage head part. The fuselage base part serves as the “basic transport platform.” The fuselage head part is specific to the role for which the fighter is configured. Using different replaceable head parts, the aircraft can be configured as a single seat, dual seat, or pilotless stealth fighter.

The head parts can have different aerodynamic designs that retain the stealth characteristics of the fighter.

The patent documents state that the patented universal platform will allow “to radically change the functionality of the entire aviation complex while maintaining the same transport capabilities built into the basic platform.”

Replaceable head parts are attached using units in the transition zone on the base part of the fuselage; there are also connectors and fittings for electrical, hydraulic, and other systems that interact with the mating connectors and fittings of the replaceable part.

Explaining the rationale for the concept, the patent authors state, “Currently, military aircraft perform many tasks. For this purpose, a wide fleet of aircraft of various sizes is used, which requires large material and human costs; when all tasks are performed with one aircraft, the efficiency of its use decreases. To reduce or eliminate costs, it is necessary to ensure in one aircraft the possibility of modification to solve various problems in the conditions of the technical base of operating organizations.”

The Concept Explained

Aerodynamically speaking, the part of the fuselage behind the cockpit supports the flight capabilities of an aircraft. Broadly speaking, the engine(s) in the fuselage provide propulsion, the fuel tanks keep the engines running, the wings and control surfaces provide flight and maneuver capability, the undercarriage provides take-off and landing capability, sensors on the fuselage provide situational awareness and a self-protection suite keeps the aircraft safe from adversary missiles.

In other words, the fuselage base provides the capability required for all mission configurations – multi-role fighter (single seat), drone mothership (dual seat), trainer (dual seat), EW (dual/single seat), and penetrating sensor (pilotless).

The weapons and sensors required change with mission configuration. On stealth fighters, weapons specific to a mission are carried internally in weapon bays. The concept is already modular. Sensors – radar, electro-optical – are carried in the front fuselage.

It is possible to carry power generation, communication, and data-crunching hardware in support of missions such as drone mothership operations in weapon bays.

If the modular fighter is being used purely for reconnaissance, the fuselage head doesn’t need a cockpit. The space saved can be used for fitting additional sensors. Also, the fuselage head could be smaller, reducing weight and increasing endurance.

The concept of a modular fighter is logical – it will reduce costs all around – procurement cost, operating costs, pilot and support personnel training costs. The concept will help reduce inventory by facilitating the use of the same hardware to respond to a much wider spectrum of threats and adversaries.

Is A Modular Fighter Feasible?

The big question is – Is the concept technically feasible? And if so, why has it not been implemented so far?

Yes, the concept is technically feasible because of technical advances. Flight control software (FCS) can easily accommodate changes in aerodynamic configurations.

Modern fighter aircraft are aerodynamically unstable. They can only be flown by FCS, not by pilots. The FCS flies the aircraft, the pilot merely guides it.

If FCS can accommodate the external carriage of the 7.2 m long Kinzhal missile weighing 4.3 t on a MiG-31K, it can certainly handle a differently shaped or sized fuselage head.

In the Checkmate concept, each cockpit, or more precisely, the fuselage head design, would come with its own FCS. So the change in capabilities would be nearly seamless.

Why Don’t We Have Modular Fighters Already

Modular fighter design became feasible with the advent of fly-by-wire control systems, wherein pilot inputs were relayed to flight control surfaces on the fuselage not by control rods or hydraulic fluid piping but by electrical wires.

However, the imperative for a modular fighter has arisen only recently to cope with growing diversity in the means of wielding air power. No more are fighter aircraft used to just deliver bombs and missiles.

They are being used for reconnaissance, SEAD (Suppression of Enemy Air Defences), EW (Electronic Warfare), and, more recently, to control stealthy drones that can penetrate highly contested airspace, either to provide targeting information to a mother ship or attack targets based on the targeting information provided by a mothership.

The communication, networking, and data processing hardware required for SEAD, EW, Reconnaissance, and mothership operations differ greatly from the support hardware requirement for conventional multirole operations. A modular fighter design would allow the operator to hone the same aircraft for completely different missions, depending on the operational requirement.


The modular fighter concept patented by the UAC is a landmark development in military aviation. The technology to implement the concept is already in place.

During the recent Dubai Airshow 2023, UAC announced that it is poised to start production for the Checkmate fighter.

It is, therefore, unlikely that the initial variant of the Checkmate would be modular in design. But as I have stated above, the technology to implement it is in place. The UAC could well spring a surprise and wrest the initiative that it earlier lost to the West with its hesitant adoption of fighter stealth.

Posted by: Su-75 | Dec 6 2023 15:03 utc | 57

@Posted by: Anonymous | Dec 6 2023 13:57 utc | 33

That is stale...mate.

In a war of attrition the goal is not to gain the territory.

While I do not know the numbers, from what I read, it doesn't look like stalemate.

Posted by: 2+2=5 | Dec 6 2023 15:16 utc | 58

@Watzov ...

A clear, concise, factual post outlining the realities on the ground. I will add that I am in complete opposition to the idea that this is a war of Russian aggression. This is a war of american aggression. america wanted and paid for the death and destruction occurring today in the Ukraine. Europe, the US and Russia could've lived in peace had not washington listened to the likes of Nuland, Kagan and the like. The end game will see eastern Ukraine - the four oblasts that voted to re-unite with Russia stay within the Russian Federation, Russia will likely take Melitopol and Odesa, leaving the Ukraine a land-locked rump state that is broke, demoralized and dependant on the west for reconstruction. The Russ will take care of it's own and leave the rest of what is left of the Ukraine to the west. This will be a financial burden that will last for years for the EU and the US. They broke it, they bought it.

Posted by: rgl | Dec 6 2023 15:19 utc | 59

"...Don’t hold your breath. :-)))).." malenkov@34

au contraire- membrum virile would benefit greatly from sustained breath holding. I'd advise that he start immediately- and watch the Week in Review comments to see when he should start breathing again.

The problem that the US faces is one of its (and Canada's) own creation- Zelensky is a prisoner of the neo-nazi parties. That has been clear since the Ankara negotiations when one of his leading diplomats was executed by the Secret Police (quite openly).
That was the last we heard of peace talks and the reason why Z had them banned. He is just more scared of what the Lviv-Edmonton-Chicago Banderites will do to him than he is of the US government.
He's only a bloody actor after all- he knows little of CIA history.

Posted by: bevin | Dec 6 2023 15:20 utc | 60

No need for the bomb-drivers to be in the cockpit,,,either at another location or eliminated by Artificial Intel.

Sort of like the human "mind", from which it is modelled.

Posted by: chu teh | Dec 6 2023 15:26 utc | 61

I think your misreading this one. There is a tendency among observers like those of us here who read a lot and think about interests a lot to assume that everything must be done for a purpose, with a strategic goal in mind. But in this case, I think Biden would love to continue the Ukraine war for a couple more years, but internal politics and the upcoming election is tripping him up. Both parties view any action through a lens of 99% its effect on the upcoming election and 1% its effect on the world. This is internal fuckery, not some grand design to force Ukraine to the table.

Posted by: Bob | Dec 6 2023 15:26 utc | 62

Posted by: Membrum Virile | Dec 6 2023 13:34 utc | 30


When are you going to give up this "Assad must go!" nonsense about Putin?

Putin outlasted GWB, Obama, Trump, and likely Biden. And over that time, the number and quality of his allies have grown, while the West has experienced the inverse.

Putin's nation is only getting stronger and stronger over time. They have rediscovered nationalist pride and have the most effective military in the world while becoming an independent economic powerhouse.

How exactly does the midwit crowd think they will stop Putin? He's just one man that low-IQ NATO fans focus on. When Putin leaves (as a hero to his people), Russia has no shortage of capable leaders, most of whom are far less moderate.

Posted by: LoveDonbass | Dec 6 2023 15:28 utc | 63

@ Posted by: William Gruff | Dec 6 2023 14:58 utc | 55

I think the reality is that Russia really, really does not want the burden that is western Ukraine.
Enough that it does not serve as launch pad for NATO.
Russia will have to be content with de-NAZI-fying the portion that they control - west can deal with the rest (or not).
The interesting point would be the question of what portion do they control - more than what they have. It seems to me that the Ukrainians have been successful in making the cost of fighting pretty high. Russia would pay for more land with lives and for what purpose?
I would think terms would allow Ukraine some degree of sovereignty in the west but that Russia essentially be occupying Odessa and Nikolaev - sort of sharing with Ukraine.
Something like that.
Putin seems to like the idea of winning concessions without the need of conflict - with mixed results.

Posted by: jared | Dec 6 2023 15:39 utc | 64

The border wall is extremely toxic for the Democrats.

Everything they do now will be taken by Trump (and rightly so) as the evidence that they were sabotaging him all the time on the same issue. This is cyanide for the Democrat campaign. Of course, the Dems will steal the election anyway, just as they did in 2020. But the more they have to steal to rig the election, the nearer they go to a civil war, at the end of which the side with the AR-15s would be the side that prevails.

It is, therefore, conceivable that Biden would reflect whether not to let the Ukraine go, so that he keeps the US.

Still: I am sure the Ukraine will get some measure of money, and the wall will get a small measure of funding.

It will only be too litlle to make a long-term difference in both cases, and enough to allow the Democrats to say to their people "we have done all we can in Ukraine" and "we have done as little as we can on the illegals".

Posted by: Augusto Pi | Dec 6 2023 15:43 utc | 65

No one should be taken in by Arestovich‘s shit, he operates at the extreme end of Ukrainian-globalist cynicism.

◾Ex presidential advisor Arestovich realised the poor choices of the Ukrainian establishment: - We apparently spilt our blood only to find ourselves in the camp of the losing side. So far, I see the president of Germany flying to Qatar and whom they forgot to meet... And we're told stories about the isolation of Putin on the world's arena. Whereas Putin is met with a cavalry parade in Qatar.

Posted by: anon2020 | Dec 6 2023 15:45 utc | 66

Bob | Dec 6 2023 15:26 utc | 62

Biden need not worry about the election at all. He's not going to be the candidate. Democrats will sack him in time, and Obama will promote someone else, like governor Newsom of California, or whoever. I will never forget that it was Obama who brought us those 4 xears of Biden, by manipulating the Democrat's primaries.

Posted by: grunzt | Dec 6 2023 15:48 utc | 67

”I brought the division here, and I will leave with it!”

These words were uttered by one general after a severe concussion, when he was offered any position with promotion outside the Northern Military District zone. This division covered itself with great glory for decades to come. I have no right to name this commander, but know that we have such generals.

Posted by: anon2020 | Dec 6 2023 15:54 utc | 68

Nothing to do with american power, or americans. Traditional way power changes hands in russia. Check out history, before you start name calling.

Posted by: Membrum Virile | Dec 6 2023 14:20 utc | 39


Strange, the last time a Russian leader was assassinated by his own court was 1801, unless the rumors about Stalin’s demise are true. (Aleksandr II was a garden-variety terror victim.)

Posted by: malenkov | Dec 6 2023 14:38 utc | 44

Well not quite. Paul III was deposed (and later died under house arrest)by his wife Catherine the Great in 1860 or 61-not an assassination but he was deposed by the court for his pro-Prussian sympathies-Paul was a great admirer of Frederick the Great and saved Fredrick ass by withdrawing Russia from the 7 years.

Paul III spent most of his time playing with toy soldiers.

Posted by: canuck | Dec 6 2023 15:56 utc | 69

Paul III spent most of his time playing with toy soldiers.

Posted by: canuck | Dec 6 2023 15:56 utc | 69


Ah, so that's what caught Membrum Virile's attention.

Posted by: LoveDonbass | Dec 6 2023 16:01 utc | 70

Love Donbas 63: “Russia has no shortage of capable leaders, most of whom are far less moderate.” That's exactly the point: the West dreams so much that Putin's successor will be a US puppet that it doesn't even consider the other possibility. But Putin's successor will have no other option than to gain respect in the West with a few painful blows, if he wants to secure his position.

Posted by: Oliver Krug | Dec 6 2023 16:02 utc | 71

Arthur Morgan
#Ukranian reminded the #Mobilization units "people hunters" that once the power changes hands they will all meet their fate, "U all be executed, for going against Ur ppl, don't you remember what happened after WW2?. " As a reminder The Na_zi collaborators were hung/lynched by ppl

This is what Russia has been waiting for and why Russia has conducted the SMO in the way that it has. Russia could have easily destroyed the Ukraine Nazi government but did not. It is up to the Ukraine people to do that and it is only when the Ukraine people reach that stage that they are no longer a tool of the west and a threat to Russia.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Dec 6 2023 16:05 utc | 72

Posted by: bevin | Dec 6 2023 15:20 utc | 60

"He's only a bloody actor after all- he knows little of CIA history."

That is a most workable statement of the thing named "CIA".

I, too, know little of the history of the CIA. It is enough to conclude that "CIA" is the name for a bundle of persons who are given freedom to operate without oversight, and therefore with ability to fund themselves.

Such funding comes from insider foreknowledge of events that sre caused/created either by others or themselves.

The "CIA" is an ironic twist of Martin Luther King's "Free at last/ free at last/ thank god almighty / free at last!".

Words, such as written above, are useless.

Posted by: chu teh | Dec 6 2023 16:08 utc | 73

The RAND study still is delusional as it states the 'unprovoked Russian aggression' when in reality the US has been planning this at least as long ago as 1993 Barry R Posen plan for war against Russia. When will the USA start taking responsibility for the chaos it creates around the globe?

Posted by: Bill | Dec 6 2023 16:09 utc | 74

Russia is finishing the job. There will be no negotiations. It will be surrender. Russia will choose how much of Ukraine will be forever integrated back into Russia proper. Once this process is underway, security apparatus will be put into place and rebuilding will be the priority.

Posted by: Áobh Ó'Sheachnasaigh | Dec 6 2023 16:10 utc | 75

Russia stated their demands to the US, the EU, and NATO before the SMO started.

The US can pretend to leave all they want but the demands (and/or additions after the SMO) remain.

US statements are pure noise, they would have to change that first but they're not going to.

I think this will all continue until either there is unconditional surrender by the US, the EU, and NATO, or none of those remain existing thus rendering the demands moot.

Would not be shocked if the Russians decide to go slower in ex-Ukraine! (And faster elsewhere).

Or maybe the time has come to expand the war in Europe? Hmm no, it will be more effective after the US "quits".

In case that sounds extreme or surprising there's a bit of a laundry list of casus belli having been committed against Russia during the last decade or so, including the biological warfare laboratories. There is no shortage of options for Russia to choose from or for the more belligerent groups in the US to fall into or rekindle in case there is "too much peace" :P

I expect ex-Ukraine to never stop raising hell about being betrayed by "the west". They'll continue doing that long after the entire of Ukraine no longer exists, at least half a century! "Leaving" will solve nothing. If all the current nazi leeches leave new ones will take up the call in order to sell out and earn easy money.

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Dec 6 2023 16:18 utc | 76

This is important. Pay attention.

What the US Govt did to Ukraine is unforgivable:

The 2014 coup with the help of Nazis and CIA snipers, endless propaganda and lies, breaches of the Minsk accords, murder of 15,000+ ethnic Russians in Donbas, provoking war with Russia via NATO expansion with plans to station nuclear capable missiles 400km from Moscow, arrogantly ignoring Russias warning to back off, acting surprised when Russia invaded Ukraine “unprovoked”, blowing up the NordStream pipelines in an act of international terrorism, unleashing thousands of sanctions against Russia to force “regime change” (unsuccessfully), bankrupting Ukraine with loans and by wrecking the Ukrainian economy, ripping off the US tax base and paying the Military Industrial Complex for sending old and ineffective arms stockpiles to Ukraine, causing millions of Ukrainians to flee to Europe, falsely promising Ukraine “unwavering support for as long as it takes”, preventing a peace agreement with Russia, causing 600,000+ Ukrainians to die in a US proxy war, losing 20% of Ukrainian territory and $10+ trillion of proven natural resources to Russia, controlling western mainstream media and lying to the world by falsely claiming that Ukraine is winning and that Russia is about to fold, using EU politicians as puppets who sold out and will never win re-election, de-industrialization of Europe and luring Gas dependent Industries with unfair subsidies to the US, costing EU taxpayers 120+ billion for funding a US proxy war and causing trillions in future economic losses for the EU, getting Germany to send tanks to kill Russians after the Soviets sacrificed 27 million people in WW2 to stop Adolf Hitler, getting Putin charged for war crimes by the western funded International Criminal Court and then backing an actual genocide by Israel against Palestinian civilians, blaming Ukraine for the failed counter-offensive instead of admitting that Pentagon war simulations are garbage, preventing diplomacy because peace and a neutral Ukraine would be a victory for Russia and destroying Biden’s re-election chances, laundering money via Ukraine to US and Ukrainian politicians, the list goes on and on.

Don’t even get me started about the millions of people the US Govt killed by funding the creation of Covid-19 and unsafe vaccines.

Are you supporting the United States Govt and the US Deep State which controls politicians in all parties, the judiciary and big tech?

Are you supporting the Pentagon propaganda media, the US censorship machine and the 5 Eyes mass surveillance regime that constantly collects every bit of data about you?

Are you supporting the US led NATO war machine, chaos by design, global deception and mass murder?

Did you know that the US Govt has killed over 20 million people in 37 victim nations since WW2? That doesn’t include deaths by sanctions and Covid-19.

Is your nation and are your politicians backing endless US wars, theft and crimes against humanity?

What happened in Ukraine is your wake-up call. This may be your last chance to rise against the evildoers and their corrupt system. Soon
will be forced to comply with censorship or be destroyed and you will have to look for posts like this in the anonymous corners of the Internet.

If you fail to act World War 3 is more likely than not and 99% of humanity would vanish. This isn’t fear-mongering. You need to understand why the US started the proxy war with Russia:

If the US Govt can’t stop the growing multipolar order spearheaded by Russia and China or the de-dollarization in international trade the US will simply collapse because it will no longer be able to print money on the backs of other nations which use the US dollar as a reserve currency.

Printing trillions of dollars was the only way for the US Govt to stay afloat, turning the markets into a Ponzi scheme and managing an unsustainable and rapidly increasing debt-burden. Those days are numbered.

Posted by: unimperator | Dec 6 2023 16:19 utc | 77

Russia will achieve all its SMO objectives and the war will end when Russia wants it to.

The only undecided part of this is the personal fate of Zelensky and who gets to try and govern what will be left of Ukraine.

Posted by: Roy Walker | Dec 6 2023 16:21 utc | 78

The entire RAND document is a waste of time, except as proof Washington has its head up its ass. It was written in late 2022 and published in January 2023. It's outdated, but the extreme ignorance and refusal to discuss Russia's understandings are still Washington's only game. For RAND, Russian "military failure" was a given, barely mentioning that this could change - even though Russia war production had obviously increased massively from an already not-low level. RAND repeats the canards of Russia's withdrawal from Kherson and Kharkiv as being big failures rather than a strategic shaping of the battlefield. RAND claims Russia would be tempted to use nuclear weapons, which flies in the face of both practical military considerations and Russia's often repeated statement of "No first use." Unlike Washington which has always refused to even claim "No first use." RAND goes downhill from there.

Don't waste time reading it, unless you really doubt Washington has its collective head up its ass.

Posted by: JessDTruth | Dec 6 2023 16:26 utc | 79

Well not quite. Paul III was deposed (and later died under house arrest)by his wife Catherine the Great in 1860 or 61-not an assassination but he was deposed by the court for his pro-Prussian sympathies-Paul was a great admirer of Frederick the Great and saved Fredrick ass by withdrawing Russia from the 7 years.

Paul III spent most of his time playing with toy soldiers.

Posted by: canuck | Dec 6 2023 15:56 utc | 69



Posted by: malenkov | Dec 6 2023 16:31 utc | 80

>Analysis of 75 years of data compiled by Uppsala University showed recently that “when interstate wars last longer than a year, they extend to over a decade on average”.
Posted by: Geraint ap Iorwerth | Dec 6 2023 12:16 utc | 9

More "stalemate" cope. At this point, it will be surprising if Ukraine can even last one more year.

Posted by: catdog | Dec 6 2023 16:31 utc | 81

Agree # 56

Russia will head in that direction, and I was just suggesting that they played the slow motion tran wreck in order to, not get Washington over excited and they wore them down. Of course, now with the Israelis murdering the Palestinians, it is in favor of Russia to an extent. Ukraine will go on the back burner and if the Nato Boyz try to bring it to the front burner - it will be three times harder. Any aged person, with half a mind left in Western Ukie Ville should be headed West in order to keep their head. What a tear jerker this has been here.

Posted by: GMC | Dec 6 2023 16:34 utc | 82

Posted by: Oliver Krug | Dec 6 2023 16:02 utc | 71


The West are masters at tunnel vision and self-deception. It's their greatest talent and their fatal weakness.

Posted by: LoveDonbass | Dec 6 2023 16:37 utc | 83

Shaffer on the judge's show.

Like most ex service Americans he has his biases but also an honest analyst. Ex naval intel I think.

Posted by: Peter AU1 | Dec 6 2023 16:39 utc | 84

@ jared 64
"... Russia really, really does not want the burden that is western Ukraine.
Enough that it does not serve as launch pad for NATO.
Russia will have to be content with de-NAZI-fying the portion that they control - west can deal with the rest (or not) ...
I would think terms would allow Ukraine some degree of sovereignty in the west but that Russia essentially be occupying Odessa and Nikolaev - sort of sharing with Ukraine."

Dream on. Russia will dissolve the Ukrain, one region at a time and certainly will not allow Nazis anywhere in the former 404 state. The West played Russia with Minsk 2, which was even an official UNSC Resolution. Russia will never make agreements with any European politicians unless and until the EU-zone politicians AND their entire top-down puppet system is gone permanently. So no time soon. Note that the UN system has been badly damaged, not just with Ukraine or Gaza, and will take years to repair - if ever. In any case, it's not clear that Russia would have big reasons to work with most of these EU states again. Most especially Germany, who always took the lead in supporting the Banderistas by supporting the Gehlen Organization, even under Gerhard Schröder, the peace and prosperity Chancellor, 1998-2005.

The poison pill will almost certainly be the West taking in Nazis so they can avoid prosecution for war crimes - just like in 1945. Russia knows that script, so oof course they will fight it tooth and nail. We are probably years away from a Western capitulation but that's where our road leads. By then, popcorn will be in short supply in the West.

Posted by: JessDTruth | Dec 6 2023 16:48 utc | 85

"I don't think it is money that is the problem here. The US can print as much as it wants. The real issue is military hardware."
Posted by: Chicago Bob | Dec 6 2023 12:11 utc | 5

Bob nails the confusion many have with MMT. While MMT is correct that the sovereign can create as much money as it wants, it is also correct that the restraint is always "real resources." For some time, the US has violated economic 'law' by covering its trade deficits (mostly military) by selling US Treasuries, ie, by 'printing money'. This is essentially a form of tribute, nicely disguised as savings, but it represents loans that will never be repaid and were never intended to be repaid. Those who violate the scheme get destroyed military or economically, such as Iraq and Libya, or are strong enough to resist, such as Russia and China.

Posted by: Tedder | Dec 6 2023 17:00 utc | 86

The paranoia & narcissism in the West is off the charts.

The recent Putin visit to UAE & SA media reports that “Putin” is “snubbing Biden” or trying to display he’s not “isolated” or Putin is “flexing” his “influence”. All the West media frames this visit as somehow connected to the US.

It can’t possibly be simply that Putin is a plus member of OPEC, or that he’s making the rounds checking in with all the NEW members of BRICs since he’s Chairman in 2024 and setting BRICS agenda.

It can’t possibly have anything to do with ME concerns, Mediterranean concerns or trade.

It can’t possibly be that Putin is interested in his own Country’s interest, it’s all about PR…

It’s all about the U.S…. Every single person on the planet’s entire globe is either “defying” the U.S. or “obeying”.
According to US, the whole globe spins around what the US does or doesn’t do.

It’s exactly the same Roman Empire complex, paranoia, self delusion & self destruction.
Good grief… we are so doomed here.

Posted by: Trubind1 | Dec 6 2023 17:01 utc | 87

By the way Russia has been and still is so far inside the US OODA loop it's genuinely funny.

Don't see much appreciation or mention of this fact, and especially not by "the experts".

Posted by: Sunny Runny Burger | Dec 6 2023 17:04 utc | 88

reply to 87

Roman empire? Durbin wants to put illegal immigrants into the US military for citizenship. What could possibly go wrong? This is straight out of the Roman Empire. Heck, it's straight out of Starship Troopers.

Posted by: Eighthman | Dec 6 2023 17:06 utc | 89


Col John Boyd was an outsider with military theories that frighten the blob.

Who wants short efficient war?

Posted by: paddy | Dec 6 2023 17:08 utc | 90

RE: JessDTruth | Dec 6 2023 16:48 utc | 85

Agreed. Russia is not increasing its military to 2.3 million for “negotiations” that will never materialize. It’s for a long war and various hot spots on globe that will continue.

Posted by: Trubind1 | Dec 6 2023 17:11 utc | 91

@ Eighthman | Dec 6 2023 17:06 utc | 89

I see your point — and it’s a good one — but we’re already a goodly way down that slippery slope. One of the requirements for males of drafting age who get a green card is to register for the draft. And to get a green card you don’t need to do much more than persuade USCIS that you’re not a financial burden to the USA, don’t do or sell drugs, don’t participate in sex slavery, and are not nor have ever been a member of a communist party. Oh, and pay lots of money of course.

Posted by: malenkov | Dec 6 2023 17:18 utc | 92

"It´s gonna be interesting how they use the wording." Goingo writes.

The wording for negociations is rather simple in fact : we (Washingtonians and co) have always priviledged PEACE as everybody knows; now we will have PEACE; thus we can proudly declare VICTORY.
No problem.

Posted by: jean levant | Dec 6 2023 17:19 utc | 93

Zelensky's trajectory seems to be following that of Joseph Heller's novels. Who knew Heller was a seer?

1 Catch 22. The protagonist wants to go home peacefully, but the rules his backers give him means he has to go to war first (Minsk repudiation)

2 Something Happened. The protagonist's life and career suddenly collapses on all fronts. he faces the Abyss.

So I now suspect he will encounter the third Novel, but it might end there....

3 As Good as Gold. To secure power, a Jewish man must make good friends with a notorious anti-Semite.

Cue Zelensky trying to bury the hatchet with Zaluszny. I doubt it will end well.

Posted by: scepticalSOB | Dec 6 2023 17:20 utc | 94

Dear B

Could you please open a non Ukraine non Palestine thread?

(Although everything might be connected nowadays )

And if you can give your assessment on the following I would be most grateful .

So we have this article

Is it just a MSM psy-op for “Xi has gone full Putin and will attack Taiwan to distract from internal problems”

Or should we go deeper than that?

How many, I would guess some at least, of the removals are confirmed?

Were those indeed cleaning compromised high level leaders (and how did it get to that?). Or mere decluttering in a more presidential model?

The rocket force , no longer vestigial, was it in need of restructuring as a new major axis of military power?

Yes, I’ like some input on these and other subject for the future china threads.

Thank you

Sorry for the OT

Posted by: Newbie | Dec 6 2023 17:33 utc | 95

John Helmer's latest piece is an interesting read. Russia's idealogical war strategy, the conflict in Ukraine, end game, and options in Palestine.

Posted by: the pessimist | Dec 6 2023 17:34 utc | 96

@ Newbie | Dec 6 2023 17:33 utc | 95 who is not very observant about the MoA bar

b posts an Open Thread on Sunday morning as The Week In Review and, depending on volume, he may open another one on Thursday or so.

I hope that explaining this to you does not get the Open Threads polluted in the same way that the Ukraine and Occupied Palestine threads are.

Posted by: psychohistorian | Dec 6 2023 17:38 utc | 97

Scott Ritter was asked what price will Biden admin pay for failure in Ukraine. He answered that none, since no American really cares about Ukraine. Hence the declaration of victory.

Posted by: unimperator | Dec 6 2023 12:19 utc | 10

Scott Ritter has a good point: If Americans, including Genocide Joe, cared about Ukraine, the people would have filled the streets demanding that the US stop the war in order to save the lives of the Ukraine people, save the Ukraine infrastructure, save the economy, and save as much territory as possible.

Also, if the American people actually gave shit about the people of Ukraine, they would have supported all the "Ukrainian" people. including those who wanted to leave the Nazi run government that was installed by a US coup against the Ukrainian people in February 2014. And they would have opposed the illegal war waged by the US installed coup government against the people in the Donbass regions of still then Ukraine.

Scott is right, Ukrainian does not feel the love ❤, and now Zelensky does not feel the love either. What a difference a couple of years make. Valeriy Zaluzhnyy is a real Nazi, if the US brings that SOB into the presidency, there will be much love from the US Congress.

Posted by: Ed | Dec 6 2023 17:42 utc | 98

A contractor in Arizona is negotiating a plan to produce 3D printed bunkers for Ukraine. Not sure if these would be produced in country or not. Part of defense cooperation agreements with Ukraine.

Posted by: the pessimist | Dec 6 2023 17:45 utc | 99

Posted by: scepticalSOB | Dec 6 2023 17:20 utc | 94


That is the common 3 act structure used in thousands of stories.

Posted by: LoveDonbass | Dec 6 2023 17:45 utc | 100

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