We’re sending 120 troops to Britain to ‘train’ raw recruits for the Ukraine killing grounds. For the Defence Dept, it’s an overseas trip to aid retention. For the Ukrainian conscripts, it’s a prelude to early death. It is criminal as well as cynical: we should be arguing for a stop to the war, not keeping it going ”to the death of the last Ukrainian.”
The much-touted “Kherson counter-offensive” has been a disastrous failure for the Ukrainian troops, lured into cauldrons in open grounds and decimated by aircraft and artillery. Two attacks on the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant by Ukrainian special forces has been another disaster, with the sizeable force led and trained by the British demolished. Russia is in control of the station and UN inspectors are at the plant and grateful for Russian help.
Severe losses over the course of the campaign are admitted by senior Ukrainian officers. From Vzglyad website via Google translate:
Ukraine’s losses during a special military operation amount to hundreds of thousands of people, and the authorities did nothing to avoid casualties, said the former deputy commander of the special operations forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, former Deputy Secretary of the NSDC, General Serhiy Krivonos, on the air of the Ukrainian Media Network YouTube channel. “[We have] the right to say to the authorities: ‘Why did you do nothing, why did hundreds of thousands of dead – what did they die for? What did you do to save their lives? Stories that this is untimely are an attempt to blur the memory, to erase history. And how can you erase the blood of the dead, who already number in the hundreds of thousands? Who will be responsible for this?” – TASS quotes the words of the general. According to Krivonos, soon Ukrainians “will begin to ask the authorities why such colossal sacrifices were made.”
One suggestion is that the latest unsuccessful counter-offensive has been timed to coincide with the monthly NATO meeting of countries, originally established according to US Secretary of Defense General Lloyd Austin to ‘weaken Russia.’ There is no sign of this happening, and the ‘mother of all sanctions’ regime has resulted in massive blowback in Europe, facing a very cold winter with the loss of Russian gas supplies. NATO is concerned that support for the continuation of the war is fading in Europe.
Ukraine is moving off the front page in the US and some UK media, although not in the New Zealand with Radio New Zealand spreading disaster porn via the BBC and the egregious Tova O’Brien trying to get Jacinda Ardern to go and hold Zelensky’s hand. The military are getting cold feet: retired US General Mark Kimmitt in the Wall Street Journal assess the options and concludes:
Yet Mr. Zelensky must recognize that diminishing resupplies would have a disastrous effect on his army, not merely for battlefield operations but for the message of declining outside support it would send to the people of Ukraine. Beginning the diplomatic resolution would be distasteful, and perhaps seen as defeatist, but as there is little chance of climbing out of the current morass, it may be better to negotiate now than later.
In modern high-intensity warfare, logistics is the Achilles’ heel. Good training, great tactics and brave soldiers are critical, but without weapons, food and fuel, armies grind to a halt. That may be what is happening as the battlefield becomes static and a breakthrough looks unlikely.
The military often talks about the ability to see things clearly and comprehensively. Looking into a future of protracted war, diminishing high-tech systems and mounting casualties, Mr. Zelensky and NATO must face up to tough decisions before those decisions are forced on them.
He’s absolutely right about the logistics. At the press briefing about the deployment Defence Minister Peeni Henare admitted that we can’t send personnel carriers because we have no spare parts!
I find independent former defence analysts the best assessors of the real situation, both before and during the Russian special operation. To call it unprovoked is official disinformation; it comes straight out of the Zygmar Brzezinski playbook, only this time the Russians saw it coming and prepared themselves. One of the best commentators in my opinion is Swiss Colonel Jacques Baud – his latest post is here talking about his new book ‘Operation Z.’
Thus, the objectives announced as early as February 24 by Russia were the “demilitarization” and “denazification” of the threat to the populations of Donbass. These objectives are related to the neutralization of capabilities, not the seizure of land or resources. To put it bluntly, in theory, to achieve their goals the Russians do not need to advance—it would be enough if Ukrainians themselves would come and get killed.
In other words, our politicians and media have pushed Ukraine to defend the terrain like in France during the First World War. They pushed Ukrainian troops to defend every square meter of ground in “last stand” situations. Ironically, the West has only made the Russians’ job easier. In fact, as with the war on terror, Westerners see the enemy as they would like him to be, not as he is. As Sun Tzu said 2,500 years ago, this is the best recipe for losing a war.
All New Zealand’s trainers are doing is helping brave Ukrainians to go and get themselves killed. It is way beyond time for it to stop. Boris Johnson went to Kyiv to tell Zelensky to continue fighting at a time when there was a chance for negotiation. He has been recently back again before he is replaced as Prime Minister with the same message about Zaporizhzhia.
The next time Jacinda Ardern speaks to Zelensky, in my opinion she should give the opposite message. Cut your losses and negotiate. Stop the senseless killing of your own people.