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  • Is there any analysis out there expecting a meaningful defense by the Ukrainian military?

    One wonders if there is a willingness/morale present to defend Kiev buidling by building ?

    Also any analysis on how imporant it is for Putin to strike soon before the march thaw?

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    • Originally posted by tantalus View Post
      Is there any analysis out there expecting a meaningful defense by the Ukrainian military?
      You mean like concrete bunkers or at least sandbag barriers? Boarded up windows? Explosive load buildings ready to collapse onto an advancing column? Explosive laden bridges to block an advance? Battalion and company fall back positions? Machine gun nests? An HQ?

      None exists.

      Originally posted by tantalus View Post
      Also any analysis on how imporant it is for Putin to strike soon before the march thaw?
      Doesn't matter. Spring thaw affects both sides. As long as Putin controls the roads and I cannot possibly see how he would be denied those. He's got some of the best combat engineers on the planet.

      Chimo

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      • Perhaps we are going to see a repeat of the fall of Kabul, with Yushenko or some other puppet flown in to take the reins of a new Government. The Western Alliance is pretty much retreating to its core, the original NATO countries plus a few East European nations who were able to sign up before Russia rose up again. Everywhere else in the world is the autocratic playground.

        As much as I dislike Trump, I cant help but wonder if the enemies of the West and democracy would have tested the US the same if he had remained in power?

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        • Originally posted by tantalus View Post
          Is there any analysis out there expecting a meaningful defense by the Ukrainian military?
          OSINT reckons there's no chance because of firepower disparity.

          Ego Numquam

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          • Originally posted by Chunder View Post

            OSINT reckons there's no chance because of firepower disparity.
            I had a low bar in mind, fall of Kabul.

            Taking weeks to take Kiev instead of 25 miles a day jaunt and then roll into Kiev without a shot...

            Draw out the battle, and creating a propaganda defeat for Putin, despite ultimate military victory.

            Then wondering if there would be a meaningful insurgency against russian occupation and anybody installed. No point in invading unless Putin assesses the latter favourably.

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            • It's worth zooming out and looking at the Russian economy. Absolute embarassment. India, china are rising, Russia is a mess. Trends are dramatically opposite. Couple that with the future of energy and Russia heading in the wrong direction. Still very dangereous and a major player but worth keeping in mind where things are trending. Unfortunatley Putin is only 69. Unlike China, Putin not positioning for real long term success.

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              • Putin announced Russia is going to officially recognize Donetsk and Luhansk.

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                • Originally posted by rj1 View Post
                  Putin announced Russia is going to officially recognize Donetsk and Luhansk.
                  In proper form Putin informed the German chancellor and the French president (exactly those two) several hours ahead of the public announcement.

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                  • Originally posted by tantalus View Post

                    I had a low bar in mind, fall of Kabul.

                    Taking weeks to take Kiev instead of 25 miles a day jaunt and then roll into Kiev without a shot...

                    Draw out the battle, and creating a propaganda defeat for Putin, despite ultimate military victory.

                    Then wondering if there would be a meaningful insurgency against russian occupation and anybody installed. No point in invading unless Putin assesses the latter favourably.
                    It seems that way.

                    Putin has managed to use hard power to bring about strategic clarity to many, & underline the truth that Ukraine as a country is friendless & weak. He walks away with several chunks of land for his time.

                    OSINT thinks invasion is inevitable. The only hope for Ukraine is Putin wants Ukraine In his prison cell, nothing more.

                    How we conduct diplomacy & world affairs seems vastly inadequate when confronted with the realities outside of the self assured prisms we've become accustomed to.
                    Ego Numquam

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by Chunder View Post

                      It seems that way.

                      Putin has managed to use hard power to bring about strategic clarity to many, & underline the truth that Ukraine as a country is friendless & weak. He walks away with several chunks of land for his time.

                      OSINT thinks invasion is inevitable. The only hope for Ukraine is Putin wants Ukraine In his prison cell, nothing more.

                      How we conduct diplomacy & world affairs seems vastly inadequate when confronted with the realities outside of the self assured prisms we've become accustomed to.
                      Not so sure. Donetsk and Luhansk were to all intents and purposes lost causes as far Ukraine is concerned. They had large ethnic Russian majorities and (logically enough) bordered Russia proper. I see no way they will ever be returned to Ukraine in the foreseeable future. Most of the country though? Russians are not in the majority apart from a few other cantonment in the north of the country. There is also clear public majority against becoming a client state of Russia's ever again in any format. Likewise seeing the Country broken up into pieces that suits Putin's geopolitical ambitions.

                      The formal occupation of the captured regions makes sense from Russia's perspective but pushing onward and trying to occupy all of the Ukraine may not. Especially since Putin, for all he is an autocrat is still sensitive to public opinion back home and hundreds if not thousands of body bags filled with Russian soldiers does not make for good domestic PR. That and the inevitable sanctions. Plus if Russia has learned nothing else from America's Iraq and Afghanistan campaigns, it's surely that occupying a country that doesn't want your there in the first place is a recipe for bleeding money like there's no tomorrow.

                      So fingers crossed, he'll settle for the declaring these two new 'Russian' republics 'returned to the Rodina' and then declare mission accomplished! Cue parades in Red Square and the national anthem on TV. After all, there's nothing Ukraine can do about it without western support and there's no chance in hell of getting that for counteroffensive operations. The big question? Will it stop there or do we get border creep as troops (purportedly from both pro-Russian 'republics') start advancing and biting of more chunks of Ukrainian territory as time goes by.
                      Last edited by Monash; 22 Feb 22,, 04:08.
                      If you are emotionally invested in 'believing' something is true you have lost the ability to tell if it is true.

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                      • Monash, the counter point is Russia subdued the Chechens. What Putin might do if no one is looking/able to look... Bring back the gulags? Not like anyone is going to seriously work to stop him. Germany, Italy and Hungary have fallen in love with appeasement since they need Russian gas. Turkey wants Russian gas and weapons. Only the Baltics and Poland take Russia seriously and without a strong Germany they are Islands.

                        The US leadership is less than ideal and the UN is powerless. The GA is bought off by China and the UNSC has 2 vetoes against Russian sanctions.

                        I think we are entering the official start of a new bi-polar world. Russia is very much Mussolini to Xi's Hitler and Khameni's Tojo.

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                        • Originally posted by zraver View Post
                          Monash, the counter point is Russia subdued the Chechens. What Putin might do if no one is looking/able to look... Bring back the gulags? Not like anyone is going to seriously work to stop him. Germany, Italy and Hungary have fallen in love with appeasement since they need Russian gas. Turkey wants Russian gas and weapons. Only the Baltics and Poland take Russia seriously and without a strong Germany they are Islands.

                          The US leadership is less than ideal and the UN is powerless. The GA is bought off by China and the UNSC has 2 vetoes against Russian sanctions.

                          I think we are entering the official start of a new bi-polar world. Russia is very much Mussolini to Xi's Hitler and Khameni's Tojo.
                          I would suggest your analysis of the European states and their ability to act is ... overly bleak. Yes Western Europe is dependent on Russian gas but Russia is equally dependent on the cash those sales bring in. Putin can't just turn off the tap with hurting Russia in the the process its a limited form of MAD. Australia has had similar experience with China recently. The Chinese banned blocked imports of Australian thermal coal for 'technical reasons' assuming they could (at least temporarily) meet requirements using stockpiles and locally sourced substitutes or if necessary more expensive coal from other producers. Result - rolling blackouts and price hikes. Followed by a hasty 'policy review ' that saw imports resume. The situations are not identicle but that example does highlight the problem. Furthermore at least a limited supply of non-Russian gas can be moved into Europe via sea. Not a complete substitute but enough to cushion the blow, a bit. There's a lot of info out there on this topic.

                          I also think you underestimate the threat severe sanctions represent to Putin. Above all else he has to keep Russians in jobs. Even he can't afford a prolonged economic downturn that floors his popularity at home. I also think you underestimate the ability of NATO and its member state to equip and sustain the Ukrainian military. Would this mean victory for the Ukrainians in the face of a full scale invasion? Obviously not. But they could make the Russians bleed. Add it all up and there are a lot of good reasons for Putin to 'cash in his winnings' and go home with something to show people. Now both 'Republics' have been openly declared he's in a good position to take the win without any of the issues I mention eventuating. He still gets to sell gas, avoid sanctions and claim the win.
                          Last edited by Monash; 22 Feb 22,, 05:07.
                          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

                            Not so sure. Donetsk and Luhansk were to all intents and purposes lost causes as far Ukraine is concerned. They had large ethnic Russian majorities and (logically enough) bordered Russia proper. I see no way they will ever be returned to Ukraine in the foreseeable future. Most of the country though? Russians are not in the majority apart from a few other cantonment in the north of the country. There is also clear public majority against becoming a client state of Russia's ever again in any format. Likewise seeing the Country broken up into pieces that suits Putin's geopolitical ambitions.

                            The formal occupation of the captured regions makes sense from Russia's perspective but pushing onward and trying to occupy all of the Ukraine may not. Especially since Putin, for all he is an autocrat is still sensitive to public opinion back home and hundreds if not thousands of body bags filled with Russian soldiers does not make for good domestic PR. That and the inevitable sanctions. Plus if Russia has learned nothing else from America's Iraq and Afghanistan campaigns, it's surely that occupying a country that doesn't want your there in the first place is a recipe for bleeding money like there's no tomorrow.

                            So fingers crossed, he'll settle for the declaring these two new 'Russian' republics 'returned to the Rodina' and then declare mission accomplished! Cue parades in Red Square and the national anthem on TV. After all, there's nothing Ukraine can do about it without western support and there's no chance in hell of getting that for counteroffensive operations. The big question? Will it stop there or do we get border creep as troops (purportedly from both pro-Russian 'republics') start advancing and biting of more chunks of Ukrainian territory as time goes by.
                            If you only want Donbass, why move half your army into field positions along multiple axes and draw up an assassination list of the enemy's government? Seems a bit like overkill.

                            I don't see Russia initiating a pull-back given their deployment, and it seems like most of the Western diplomats and defense ministers are screaming the same thing. Trying to eke out a tiny victory for domestic political consumption does not seem like a Putin thing. He seems to legitimately want to control Ukraine, thinks he can do it, and knows no one can actually stop him.

                            "The great questions of the day will not be settled by means of speeches and majority decisions but by iron and blood"-Otto Von Bismarck

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                            • I also think you underestimate the threat severe sanctions represent to Putin.
                              Can I point out him and others are probably still under sanctions from 7 years ago and seem to have handled those just fine?

                              Comment


                              • Originally posted by rj1 View Post

                                Can I point out him and others are probably still under sanctions from 7 years ago and seem to have handled those just fine?
                                Depends on who you mean, North Korea? It doesn't really have an economy to damage to begin with. The idea being containment. Iran, pretty similar apart from oil and their economy is in very poor shape. All estimates indicating younger Iranians would gladly overthrow the current regime if they could. Neither of them have economies or populations in Russia's league. And with that size goes a thirst for all the best they see the west has to offer, especially in the middle and upper classes. Sanctions won't get rid of Putin but they would make his life much, much more difficult, especially if the oligarchs are targeted as well. So form his perspective its risk vs rewards. At the moment he's 'winning' albeit on a small scale for effectively zero cost to Russia. If he keeps pushing true, the returns go up but so do the risks for him personally big time. And he's playing a long game, (no worrying about election losses for Vlady) just so long as he keeps things on an even keel at home.
                                If you are emotionally invested in 'believing' something is true you have lost the ability to tell if it is true.

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