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  • Originally posted by TopHatter View Post

    Salami slicing, would be my guess.

    Because a full-scale invasion of Ukraine:
    • Turns Russia into a genuine international pariah, possibly even being cut off completely from the international financial networks.
    • Cyberwarfare against Russia commences full tilt.
    • Finland and Sweden take a long hard look at NATO membership like never before.
    • Europe's skeletal armed forces are brought up to NATO spending requirements or beyond.
    • The Baltic countries become fortress-states, ditto Poland.
    • A new Cold War begins
    That should make Xi happy.

    Comment


    • Originally posted by TopHatter View Post

      Salami slicing, would be my guess.
      And then again....

      Russia has nearly all the forces in place for a large-scale invasion of Ukraine: Defense official: updates

      Russia has massed nearly all the forces – infantry, artillery, cruise and ballistic missiles – it will need to mount a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, a senior Defense official told USA TODAY.

      Those forces include two dozen warships in the Black Sea and represent nearly 100% of the combat power needed for a large-scale at, said the official who briefed reporters but was not authorized to speak publicly.

      The strategic movement of Russian forces comes as Ukraine was poised to implement a 30-day state of emergency on Wednesday. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called up military reservists, as Russia recognized two separatist regions as independent and appeared mobilized for major military action.

      Zelenskyy said that Ukraine wants "silence" but noted it must act. "But if we remain silent today, we will disappear tomorrow," he said late Tuesday.

      The nation's parliament must approve the emergency declaration, initiated by Ukraine's security council and coming a day after Russian President Vladimir Putin received permission from lawmakers to use troops outside the country.

      The Kremlin's actions drew wide condemnation and major sanctions from the United States and European Union.

      “Russia just announced that it is carving out a big chunk of Ukraine,” President Joe Biden said Tuesday. And that served as the trigger for the U.S. to impose sanctions targeting Moscow's banks and some elite individuals. Biden said Russia "will pay an even steeper price" if aggression continues.
      A man carries bags and a bunch of tulips on a bicycle in Stanytsia Luhanska, the only crossing point open daily, in the Luhansk region, eastern Ukraine, on Feb. 22, 2022.
      On Wednesday, Biden announced new sanctions on the company overseeing the Russian-owned gas pipeline Nord Stream 2, as well as its corporate officers, in response to Moscow’s invasion.

      Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and other officials have remained on an even keel, downplaying any threat, even as their nation has become nearly surrounded by over 150,000 Russian troops, built up over months.

      Zelenskyy continued talks on Tuesday with neighboring leaders, speaking with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

      Diplomacy between Russia and Western allies appeared all but dead, following the announcement of penalties. Secretary of State Antony Blinken canceled his Thursday meeting with Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

      Russia close to having forces in place for large-scale invasion
      Russian President Vladimir Putin has nearly all the forces in place for a large-scale invasion of Ukraine that could happen at any hour, according to a senior Defense official.

      About 80% of those forces have moved into forward positions, ranging from three to thirty miles of the Ukrainian border, said the official who briefed reporters but was not authorized to speak publicly.

      Putin has massed infantry, artillery, cruise and ballistic missiles as well as two dozen warships in the Black Sea. Those forces represent nearly 100% of the combat power Putin needs for a large-scale invasion.

      There are 10 Russian amphibious landing ships in the Black Sea, the official said. They exist for a sole reason: putting boots on the ground, the official said.

      Indications of an imminent invasion are based on intelligence gathering and satellite imagery, the official said.
      ___________
      Supporting or defending Donald Trump is such an unforgivable moral failing that it calls every bit of your judgement and character into question. Nothing about you should be trusted if you can look at this man and find redeemable value

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      • Originally posted by tbm3fan View Post

        There is no way you can be sure of this unless you happen to be inside the mind of the average Russian on the street today. First, AG was a strange foreign country and I'm sure many Russians wondered why do we bother with that place. Ukraine is not a strange foreign place. In fact, if the average Russian is learning about Russian history, they will have learned the Ukraine region was part and partial of Imperial Russia. That the region has native Russian speakers in large numbers. Russian media will have been hammering on that. Probably hammering on how it was "taken" from Russia. Maybe comparing NATO to the old British, French, and German empires of the 1800s through 1914 as threatening Russia's position in the world. I could see that given the Russian tendency to view the West suspiciously. Vlad also talks in his speech about how the Russian Orthodox Church is threatened by what is going on in Ukraine. Vlad is hitting all the deep emotional buttons of the Russian people so to say the public wouldn't go along is a bit of a stretch especially if he blitzkriegs Ukraine for early success.
        As far as I understand he's already pinched off those parts of the country that have large ethic Russian majorities. So in that regard it's 'mission accomplished'. The rest of Ukraine? He can play 'patriot' as much as he wants a Russian occupation will be opposed and deeply resented by the majority of the population. As I said they can do it but it's going to cost them and - keep costing them.
        If you are emotionally invested in 'believing' something is true you have lost the ability to tell if it is true.

        Comment


        • Originally posted by Monash View Post

          I don't expect them to win, just kill a few Russian before they die, get captured or retreat. Then rinse a repeat. And let Putin explain the casualties to the families of the Russian soldiers killed in a military offensive they're not particularly invested in.
          Putin, learned from his last foray into Ukraine. Casualties are a state secret.

          Putin seems to be rebuilding the Soviet Union at a rapid pace with the same economic disadvantages as the USSR. Who is footing the bill for Russia in Syria, Libya, Ukraine. All the new weapon systems at little or no production. China maybe a wealthy ally. I don't see it as an economic gold mind for the Russians.

          Putin is a hell of a F-35 salesman. I don't think Ukraine is going to join NATO anytime soon, but I can see Sweden and Finland joining.

          Well NATO membership was encroaching on Russia. Now it a larger NATO military presence due to Putin's actions.

          Comment


          • Originally posted by zraver View Post

            That should make Xi happy.
            In terms of Russia becoming a pariah on the world stage and desperately needing an economic life preserver that China would be willing to provide/exploit? Absolutely.

            In terms of the US being distracted while the PRC makes further claims in the SCS or actions on Taiwan? I wouldn't be so certain. Between the situations in Eastern Europe and the SCS, I think the US can walk and chew gum at the same time. You can also bet that the East and SE Asian countries are monitoring the situation in Ukraine with great interest and concern when it comes to the PRC pulling similar moves. If anything, Russia's moves against a non-aligned Ukraine has added incentive for even historically distrustful Asian countries to consider collective defense arrangements.
            Last edited by Red Team; 23 Feb 22,, 23:42.
            "Draft beer, not people."

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Dazed View Post
              Putin, learned from his last foray into Ukraine. Casualties are a state secret.
              You can only hide casualties for so long.

              Sooner or later Ivan's family isn't going to have to guess why he isn't writing or calling home anymore. They'll know.

              And their neighbors in the apartment two doors down are going to whisper that their son Igor hasn't been heard from in months...and the same is true of their cousin Pavel.

              And even if they receive a regretful notification that their son died in a "training accident" in the Far Eastern Military District, they'll be fooled for all of about minus-2 seconds.
              Supporting or defending Donald Trump is such an unforgivable moral failing that it calls every bit of your judgement and character into question. Nothing about you should be trusted if you can look at this man and find redeemable value

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              • Everyone is assuming that Putin is going to invade and occupy the whole of the UKR. There is another option, a punitive expedition. Come in, kill the Ukrainian Army, sack Kiev, leave, and let the Ukrainians pick up the pieces.
                Chimo

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                • Originally posted by Officer of Engineers View Post
                  Everyone is assuming that Putin is going to invade and occupy the whole of the UKR. There is another option, a punitive expedition. Come in, kill the Ukrainian Army, sack Kiev, leave, and let the Ukrainians pick up the pieces.
                  Definitely possible but I can't see the Russians doing something so barbaric with the rest of the world laser-focused on Ukraine. Sure, you could get away with that 20-25 years ago in Chechnya, but in this day and age of every Tom, Dick and Harry being able to broadcast instant worldwide hi-def footage....?

                  I've always assumed that the objective of a full-scale invasion would be occupy all (or most) of Ukraine east of the Dnieper.
                  Supporting or defending Donald Trump is such an unforgivable moral failing that it calls every bit of your judgement and character into question. Nothing about you should be trusted if you can look at this man and find redeemable value

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                  • Originally posted by Monash View Post

                    As far as I understand he's already pinched off those parts of the country that have large ethic Russian majorities. So in that regard it's 'mission accomplished'. The rest of Ukraine? He can play 'patriot' as much as he wants a Russian occupation will be opposed and deeply resented by the majority of the population. As I said they can do it but it's going to cost them and - keep costing them.
                    How can you be so sure about that. Granted all families want to protect their love ones but the Russian mind (psychology) is not anywhere near the same as ours when it comes to other facets like Mother Russia.

                    I may have to talk to my niece as she married an American born Russian guy for an interesting mix of cultures and nationalities. His parents are Russian born and they offered to pay my niece $25,000 to name her fraternal twins last month two specific Russian names. Now who does that? My niece turned them down.

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                    • Originally posted by Officer of Engineers View Post
                      Everyone is assuming that Putin is going to invade and occupy the whole of the UKR. There is another option, a punitive expedition. Come in, kill the Ukrainian Army, sack Kiev, leave, and let the Ukrainians pick up the pieces.
                      OK, maaaaaaybe. Only how does that solve Putin's very strong comments about Russian security being threatened by the barbarians (West) at the walls? Or is he just using security as a talking point and he is cool with Poland being in NATO?

                      Comment


                      • Originally posted by tbm3fan View Post
                        How can you be so sure about that. Granted all families want to protect their love ones but the Russian mind (psychology) is not anywhere near the same as ours when it comes to other facets like Mother Russia.
                        Because Russian mothers are already livid about their sons being killed in "training accidents" and then told to keep their mouths shut and don't ask questions about it.

                        Supporting or defending Donald Trump is such an unforgivable moral failing that it calls every bit of your judgement and character into question. Nothing about you should be trusted if you can look at this man and find redeemable value

                        Comment


                        • "Russia has issued a notice to airmen (NOTAM) that effectively closes the airspace virtually all of its border with northeastern Ukraine to all civilian air traffic. This NOTAM is currently in place through May 18. This is an extremely worrisome sign that a major military operation may be imminent."
                          Supporting or defending Donald Trump is such an unforgivable moral failing that it calls every bit of your judgement and character into question. Nothing about you should be trusted if you can look at this man and find redeemable value

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by tbm3fan View Post

                            How can you be so sure about that. Granted all families want to protect their love ones but the Russian mind (psychology) is not anywhere near the same as ours when it comes to other facets like Mother Russia.....
                            I wouldn't say I'm 'sure'. That's just my assessment based on the reaction of Russia's citizenry to the casualties encountered in previous campaigns such as Chechnya. Were Ukraine the aggressor i.e. occupying strips of Russian territory by force it would be a different story of course but that isn't the case. And as far as I can see from report's I've read the current hostilities and their potential ramifications aren't widely supported by Russians at large. They don't as yet seem to have much 'buy in' to Putin's rhetoric on Ukraine. Their main priorities are the near term ramifications of any war on their jobs and the economy etc. Which if you think about it is hardly surprising.
                            If you are emotionally invested in 'believing' something is true you have lost the ability to tell if it is true.

                            Comment


                            • Originally posted by TopHatter View Post
                              "Russia has issued a notice to airmen (NOTAM) that effectively closes the airspace virtually all of its border with northeastern Ukraine to all civilian air traffic. This NOTAM is currently in place through May 18. This is an extremely worrisome sign that a major military operation may be imminent."
                              Does NATO have any aircraft or drones flying in Ukrainian airspace?
                              If you are emotionally invested in 'believing' something is true you have lost the ability to tell if it is true.

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by Monash View Post

                                Does NATO have any aircraft or drones flying in Ukrainian airspace?
                                Yes
                                https://www.thedrive.com/the-war-zon...around-ukraine

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