I will start slow and lay some groundwork up to my point.
Analysis: Have China and India shifted stance on Russia war? (msn.com)
If you have to ASK, it’s not significant. Russia will not notice.
- Thursday as the first snow of the season fell in Kyiv
- Moscow’s missiles continue to take out power and gas plants as winter descends
- Air raid sirens sounded across Ukraine on Thursday. At least four people were killed and more than two dozen others wounded in the drone and missile strikes, including one that hit a residential building, authorities said
- In eastern Ukraine, Russia “launched a massive attack on gas production infrastructure,” state energy company Naftogaz head Oleksiy Chernishov said in a statement
- Russian strikes also hit the central city of Dnipro and Ukraine’s southern Odesa region for the first time in weeks.
- Critical infrastructure was also hit in the northeastern region of Kharkiv, in the area of Izyum, wounding three workers
- Separately, the United Nations announced the extension of a deal to ensure exports of grain and fertilizers from Ukraine
- In addition to securing the safe passage of Ukrainian exports, Guterres said in a statement the United Nations is also “fully committed” to removing obstacles that have impeded the export of food and fertilizer from Russia.
Ukrainians make bold statements about how they are undaunted by strikes. However, I notice a distinct lack of future tense in the statements today. There is no “will be” or “will remain” undaunted. Ukrainians are starting to realize they cannot expel the Russians if they are all frozen and starved to death (Ukrainians living in cities are dependent on refrigeration for food).
The “obstacles” to Russian food export are not direct sanctions on the food and fertilizer, but sanctions on use of Western shipping, insurance, etc. If Russia is allowed such access, there will be a rage of cheating and other goods will be exported, and material to make arms will be imported. In any case, sale of Russian food will support their war. They can fight indefinitely. No one is attacking them on their turf. They are not starving or freezing. There is zero reason for them to stop.
Russia’s chilling ‘World War’ warning to West after Poland strike; ‘You are moving closer to…’ | Watch (msn.com) Medvedev has been a loose canon saying nothing that reflected actual Russian policy. He’s trying to ingratiate himself and save his own skin. It isn’t going to work, and we should ignore him. The louder he shouts, the weaker he appears to other Russian siloviki (ruling club).
Russia’s economy has finally fallen into recession, 8 months after it invaded Ukraine (msn.com) A 4% GDP shrinkage is completely insignificant. Sanctions are not working and will not work.
‘That’s not the evidence’: Ukraine and allies in rare public clash over Poland blast (msn.com)
Pay absolutely no attention to this controversy. I’m sorry I mentioned it in previous issues. Two missiles hitting a small farm are not significant no matter whose missiles they were. This is a phenomenon well known in management science. A committee (whether of individuals or nations), will spend more time discussing a small item than a large one. They don’t understand the large one nor what to do about it. But they can investigate and decide on the small one ad infinitum. Everyone is an expert. The important thing is dozens to hundreds of Russian missiles striking Ukraine electrical and energy infrastructure every day!
- One thing is for sure: the Ukrainians do not want any negotiations – Peskov
- Moscow would continue what it calls a “special military operation”, and that missile strikes on targets across Ukraine were the consequence of Kyiv not being willing to meet at the negotiating table.
Recall numerous previous statements by Peskov and other officials. Russia defines “negotiation” as achieving [all] of their objectives by peaceful means, including the de-nazification (ethnic cleansing) of Ukraine, and seizure of the 4 annexed provinces at a minimum, guarantees of Ukraine’s pro-Russian stance and pro-Russian government officials, official status of Russian language in Ukraine, economic coupling of the two countries, Ukraine can never join EU or NATO as its citizens want.
You can have government officials of Ukraine sign such documents all day, and they will just be ignored or even assassinated, while the Ukrainians continue to fight Russia. Russia simply wants to cut off US weapons. That is the only effect of negotiations. The US is the only party to a negotiation that will keep its word when it is not in US interests to do so. I do NOT consider this an admirable trait, but a flaw in today’s world. We are living in a world where those with moral stands do not set an example. They are simply killed and quickly forgotten, erased from history. The internet makes it possible to erase someone or something with a few keyclicks. No book burning necessary.
Anger on the front lines and anxiety at home as Russia’s mobilization is mired in problems (msn.com)
50,000 mobilized soldiers deployed in Ukraine. 300 known to be resisting. That’s 0.6% in case you need help with a calculator. In no society on Earth is that level of opposition considered significant. The press are just scouting out one or two disgruntled people to try and make a wishful dream come true. Isn’t going to happen. There will be no soldier revolt in Russia.
WHAT IS RUSSIAN MEDIA SAYING?
Pelosi to retire as Democrat leader — RT World News (won’t seek to be minority leader)
NATO’s hair trigger: The Polish missile incident was a close brush with nuclear annihilation — RT World News (more bluster to intimidate the West – if Russia were willing to be the first to use nukes, they would not now be retreating from Kherson)
Zelensky ‘lying’ to drag US into WW3 – Tucker Carlson — RT Russia & Former Soviet Union (Tucker Carlson has proven he will say anything to help Putin)
Andrey Kortunov: American attempts to preserve hegemony will only make the transition to a new world order harder for Washington — RT World News (the article suggests Russia is simply jealous of the attention paid to things like US mid-term elections by the rest of the world, indicating it is the US whose politics are consequential. The whole war is Russia’s effort to be consequential. This starts to make sense. A “school shooter” is attempting to be consequential. Russia is just a mass shooter – trust me, it is the entire population, not just Putin – and should be treated as such. Send SWAT. Eliminate shooter. Then talk about why the situation arose and how to prevent it in the future. Pass laws against guns (in this case, nations with excess military capability)).
Special operation does not depend on weather conditions — Kremlin spokesman – Russian Politics & Diplomacy – TASS “The special military operation is continuing, it does not depend on climatic or weather conditions,” Peskov said. He added that “its goals must be achieved.”
Do you see ANY reduction in Russia’s determination to use missiles to reduce Ukraine to the stone age?
Do you see any reduction in Russia’s CAPABILITY to do so?
Russia is now able to buy as many drones and missiles as it wishes from Iran, and as many artillery shells as it wishes from North Korea. N.K. has been evading sanctions for years and is likely supplied by the Chinese. Do you see any decline in Russia’s ability to get revenue from oil? No, it has gone up. Price caps are legendary for their ineffectiveness. Nations have been getting around embargoes since time immemorial.
Russia’s objective of destroying Ukraine is easily within their capability, and does not depend on holding any territory.
Once Ukraine is destroyed, there will be no resistance to Russia occupying the territory. The way NATO quickly shied away from any confrontation recently confirms NATO will not engage Russia. It is questionable whether it will even activate a collective defense.
Only the US is capable of checking Russia, and Biden is not going to do it.
Trump has proven he will hold Ukraine aid hostage to his own devious agenda (fake evidence against Hunter Biden)
The remaining contender for President is Ron DeSantis. In all of the last year he’s made only TWO statements about Ukraine. Here they are:
The Musk proposal gives Russia Crimea and other territory, and does not prevent Russia from continuing their war in the future at any time they please, and have recovered sufficiently. It grants them Ukrainian neutrality, which will enable them to enter and manipulate Ukraine politics. Likely the Ukrainian people will not accept it and will keep fighting.
DeSantis’ position on Ukraine is the weakest of the three – Biden, Trump & DeSantis.
Here is a chronology of Trump’s evolving position:
- 6 years ago Donald Trump on Ukraine – YouTube He will not allow Putin to go into Ukraine. The mess was made by Obama (I agree completely with the verdict on Obama. My initial support for Trump was rational, based on his statements. Ukraine was dominant in my politics already in 2016.)
- March 22 Trump Explains What He Would Do to End Putin’s War in Ukraine | CNSNews
- Reduce price of oil drastically by pumping more in the US. Starve Russia’s finances that way. This is something no Democrat can do because they depend on the green faction.
- Would make heavy use of drones rather than jets. In fact drones have been very successful for the Ukrainian side, even weak Turkish drones. US is still withholding all but its smallest drones. The more capable US drones have 2500 mile range and could strike deep in Russia. Trump wouldn’t care. He ordered actions that killed Russian troops in Syria, and nothing came of it. He is a master of blustering himself, and sees Russia as a weak blusterer.
- Trump pushes for Russia-Ukraine talks, complicating GOP politics | The Hill – This position I consider disgusting. But it’s likely to get Trump votes of anyone who doesn’t want nuclear war.
- Ukraine could be Donald Trump’s path to political salvation | The Star – many Americans don’t see the point of the war. (don’t see the connection with Taiwan? I see it so clearly I fail to understand them) If the polls can be believed, those who support Trump (and most Republicans do) care little about how he did in the past in Ukraine. Rather, they are interested in what he would do now. McCarthy will lead the House and is already talking about reduced support for Ukraine. 30 liberal democrats sent a letter which they withdrew, but it likely represents their feeling they want negotiation. Trump argues he would get a stronger deal in negotiation than Biden. Um, this might be true, I’m not sure. Trump is also as likely as Putin to ignore a deal and shoot.
- Viktor Orbán says Donald Trump’s the one to end war in Ukraine – POLITICO – The US must come to an agreement with Russia, ‘and then the war will be over.’ Likely to end or roll back NATO expansion, and cede territory to Russia. I am not however convinced Russia will not start the war up again, and I think China will soon invade Taiwan.
In thinking about the future, and 2024, it is time to face the music. These are the only 3 men who might possibly become president. Any other is a total pipe dream.
Biden says now he will not force Ukraine to negotiate, though he’s letting his minions say otherwise. The two Republicans are significantly worse and will, in my opinion, endanger the security of the free world. So the only alternative is to press Biden to (a) make good on his promise not to force Ukraine, and (b) clean house and get rid of his minions sending mixed messages that encourage Russia. Biden must stop the missiles and clean up messaging.
Minion in Chief, General Milley
Damage to Ukraine’s Infrastructure
Damage to Ukraine Residential Structures
Guess who is going to pay that cost in any negotiated settlement? The U.S. taxpayer. If you think it is expensive to continue the war, just try paying for a negotiated end. Russia is liable to wind up collecting damages. Remember it defines negotiation as achieving ALL of its aims. That includes a New World Order with it and the Chinese making the rules and the US losing out, being dominated and extorted by trade in critical commodities.
ACTION – send this letter or some variation to Biden now:
Dear Mr. President,
With elections running so close, it is likely even a few people voting on the Ukraine issue will decide them. I voted entirely based on who supports Ukraine in the mid-term elections.
Of the three men most likely to be elected President in 2024, you are the only one promising not to force Ukraine to negotiate, and supporting the expulsion of Russia troops from all Ukrainian territory. This should give you an advantage. DeSantis and Trump both strongly intend to “negotiate”. Russia defined negotiation as achieving all their aims through talks, not giving up anything, which will likely embolden China to take Taiwan. I don’t believe you for one second that China has no intention to invade Taiwan, don’t waste your breath on that. Xi and his generals have stated their position over and over. None have recanted.
If the war is still going on in 2024, you will lose. The war will not remain popular that long. You must be the victor by then, or at least way ahead so that switching leaders is a scary proposition, possibly costing the lead.
If Russia continues raining missiles on Ukraine – and I see nothing to stop them, they can get all they need from Iran – there will be no Ukrainians left by 2024. Maybe by 2023. This missile battle is independent of territory battles. Russia is just saving their troops until Ukraine is destroyed. Russia is winning the missile battles. Even 80-90% success at shooting them down does not stop the cumulative effect.
You can either stop the missiles yourself, or give Ukraine the means to stop them and risk however Ukraine might later use that capability. Make up your mind quick.
Further you must clean up your administration’s messaging. Get rid of the minions who are advocating forcing Ukraine to negotiate.
Don’t be fooled by morale in the Russian army. The ground war is irrelevant for the time being.
EASY WRITING TIP: I don’t use these links. They are tedious. Enter “write to the white house” or “write to john cornyn” etc. and it comes right up.