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Ukraine: Russia Breaks Civilian Evacuation ‘Humanitarian’ Cease-Fire, Advances Towards Kyiv 

Ukraine: Russia Breaks Civilian Evacuation ‘Humanitarian’ Cease-Fire, Advances Towards Kyiv 

Kyiv: “Russian artillery and multiple launch rocket systems were pounding residential buildings and infrastructure.”

As Russian invasion of Ukraine enters the tenth day, Moscow has intensified its military offensive and broken a temporary cease-fire put in place to evacuate civilians in two strategic cities, the media reports say.

“[A] ceasefire was declared to evacuate civilians from Mariupol and Volnovakha at the request of the Ukrainian side and solely for humanitarian purposes,” Russian state news agency TASS reported Saturday morning. That cease-fire has now been broken just hours after the Russian announcement, trapping thousands of residents in the encircled cities.

The Russian campaign in the south, focused on the cities of Mariupol and Volnovakha, is aimed at cutting Ukraine off from the sea. According to news reports on Saturday, Russian ground forces were also moving in to take the strategic port city of Odessa.

The Associated Press reported the collapse of the cease-fire:

What looked like a breakthrough cease-fire to evacuate residents from two cities in Ukraine quickly fell apart Saturday as Ukrainian officials said continued shelling had halted the work to remove civilians hours after Russia announced the deal.

The Russian defense ministry earlier said it had agreed on evacuation routes with Ukrainian forces for Mariupol, a strategic port in the southeast, and the eastern city of Volnovakha. The vaguely worded statement did not make clear how long the routes would remain open.

“The Russian side is not holding to the cease-fire and has continued firing on Mariupol itself and on its surrounding area,” said Kyrylo Tymoshenko, the deputy head of President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s office. “Talks with the Russian Federation are ongoing regarding setting up a cease-fire and ensuring a safe humanitarian corridor.”

Russian Advance into Kyiv

Meanwhile, the Russian forces are advancing towards Kyiv in a pincer movement, approaching the Ukrainian capital from the north west and east directions.

The Ukrainian defenders appear to have stalled the advancing Russian troops in the north west. The Russian column from the east, on the other hands, is “advancing rapidly on the capital,” the BBC reported Saturday.

The British broadcaster reported the critical situation around Kyiv:

The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) says the front of a long convoy of Russian military vehicles remains in this area and has made little progress in recent days. (…).

To the east, however, Russian troops are now advancing rapidly on the capital, according to the Institute for the Study of War (ISW). Defence analysts say the aim of the Russian forces is to envelop and eventually encircle the city.

Civilian casualties continue to mount across Ukraine after Russian President Vladimir Putin promised an “uncompromising fight” against the Ukrainian resistance.

The French news agency AFP reported the misery unleashed by the Russian onslaught:

According to Ukraine, thousands of civilians have died since President Vladimir Putin’s military invaded on February 24 (…).

On Friday, missile and bomb attacks on cities continued, the Ukrainian military said on Facebook, adding that the main focus of Russian troops was to encircle Kyiv.

It added that Russian artillery and multiple launch rocket systems were pounding residential buildings and infrastructure. (…)

In the northern city of Chernihiv, 47 people died Thursday when Russian forces bombed residential areas, including schools and a high-rise apartment block, according to a new toll given by local officials.

Millions of Ukrainians Women and Children Flee for Safety

As invading Russian forces shell Ukrainian towns and cities across Ukraine, millions have been displaced. So far, over are million Ukrainians have found refuge in neighboring European countries, with Poland taking the bulk of refugees.

German public broadcaster Deutsche Welle reported the ongoing displacement:

As of Thursday, over 1 million people have fled Ukraine into neighboring countries, according to the UN refugee agency UNHCR, as the Russian war enters its second week.

The UNHCR expects over 4 million people will need protection and assistance due to displacement from Ukraine. The EU’s crisis management commissioner has said the figure could reach 7 million.  (…)

The UNHCR and Polish authorities said over half a million people crossed into Poland from Ukraine since Russia invaded on February 24. Poland had already been home to around 1.5 million Ukrainians before that.

Unlike the migrant crisis of 2015, when Europe was flooded with young men men from the Middle East and North Africa, Ukrainian refugee wave is predominantly made up of women, children and elderly.

Tens of thousands of Ukrainian men and women have enlisted to defend their cities and towns, following a call by President  Zelensky urging conscripts and reservists to join the ranks of country’s armed forces.

Russia Continues to Sell Gas to Germany, Europe

Despite well-publicized sanctions announced by the European countries, including freezing the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline between Russia and Germany, the Putin regime continues to supply gas to the continent.

Ignoring the objections made by the Polish government, the German operators have refused to shut down the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline. German media reports suggest that country’s energy companies are trying to wiggle past sanctions imposed by their own government.

Reuters reported the unrestricted Russian gas supply to Europe via Nord Stream 1:

The operator of the operational Nord Stream 1 undersea gas pipeline from Russia to Germany said on Friday that transportation of natural gas to Europe was continuing normally.

Nord Stream AG is not involved in the Nord Stream 2 project and not engaged in the activities of Nord Stream 2 AG. Nord Stream AG is, therefore, not targeted by the sanctions against Nord Stream 2 AG neither by any other sanctions,” it said in a statement.

It is worth noting that Kremlin-controlled energy giant Gazprom is the majority shareholder of Nord Stream AG consortium, which owns the Nord Stream 1 and 2 pipelines.

Ukraine War Threatens Global Food Supply

The Russian invasion, which involves blockading key Ukrainian ports, is threatening the global food supply. Ukraine, also known as the bread basket of Europe, is one of the world’s biggest supplier of grains.

The country is among the top producers of corn and wheat, a staple to billions across the world. “At stake is the 13% of global corn exports and the 12% of wheat that flow from Ukraine,” The Wall Street Journal noted last week, “In threatening those flows Moscow risks disrupting supplies to China while setting off a scramble among customers in fragile Middle Eastern economies at a time when food inflation is already high,” the business daily warned.

Asian countries are already feeling the impact. “Asian economies … are being hit with food shortages as shipments are cancelled and delivery routes upended” by the invasion, The South China Morning Post reported Friday. “Heavy fighting closes off parts of the Black Sea, affecting shipments of wheat, oats and other cereals to Asia upsetting supply chains,” the Hong Kong-based newspaper daily added.

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Comments

Morning Sunshine | March 5, 2022 at 10:37 am

I don’t trust either side. All this pro-Ukraine garbage from the same media who edit 911 tapes to foment racial discord and fear-porn a common cold, and we are just supposed to believe their side of the story?!?!? No way.

Not to say I think Putin is all sunshine and roses. Not at all. My husband lived in Russia for a few years at the end of the 90s; We do not trust the Russians either.

We are to send our precious young people to defend the borders of a country on the other side of the world but leave ours wide open? Biden needs to sit down, eat some pudding and leave the USA and our men/equipment out of this pony show.

    thad_the_man in reply to Morning Sunshine. | March 5, 2022 at 7:06 pm

    When Hitler went to war with GB, GB was a good guy.
    When Hitler went to war with Stalin, Stalin was a bad guy.
    Just because a bad guy goes to war with you does not mean that you are a good guy.
    I wouldn’t even put Putin in the bad guy list. He’s certainly no Stalin of Hitler.
    Probably the person i would most compare him to is Otto Von Bismark.

    Ukraine is one of the most corrupt countries in the world. It is one of the only Eastern Block country that is poorer then at the tiem of the dissolution of the Soviet Union. I could go on. There are many reason. Some very trifling, but they do add up.

    As far as I see the main problems that Russia has with them are:
    1. The damming of the main source of water to Crimea bu Ukraine after they decided to separate.
    2. The repeated shelling of Donbas after they separated.
    3. The setting up of a US puppet government in Ukraine and attempts to have them enter Nato.
    4. The Nazi elements in the military ie the Azov battalion. Please don’t tell me they are a “small” part. Not one person in the US military would be tolerated if they used Nazi iconography in their battle gear.

    These seem like good reasons to me.

    This is a part of the world where each piece of land has been in at least three different countries in the past.

    The Poles hate the Ukrainians. The Ukrainians hat the Latvians. The Latvians hate the Czechs …
    and everyone hates the Russians.

    Let them settle their differences. If they want to get us to help them make peace fine. But don’t help them make war. And don’t setup puppet governments.

      Wow. That’s it, just “wow.”

      Fatkins in reply to thad_the_man. | March 6, 2022 at 7:24 am

      What a stunning display of ignorance.

      Even if we were to grant every single point, which I certainly don’t that wouldn’t remotely qualify as a reason for a whole sale invasion of another country.

      With respect to your specific points.

      1) Ukrainian economy, nope you are just plain wrong

      https://carnegieendowment.org/2012/03/09/underachiever-ukraine-s-economy-since-1991-pub-47451

      2) the Donbas region is part of the ukraine with russian sponsored separatists. Even if I were to grant what you say as being true they are still a proxy for Russian aggression

      3) the Ukrainian government is democratically elected, so what you are saying is utter rubbish. As for the NATO aspect, NATO have said no precisely because they didn’t want to trigger an aggressive russian response. This has happened despite that happening hence why Finland and Sweden now want to join NATO.
      4) are you basing that on a non russian source? I’m not clear that what you’ve stated is true and even if it were that’s still not a reason to declare war on a country.

      5) Ukraine has a long history , that is to say it’s a defined nation not some invented piece of land.

      6) it’s not some territorial dispute This is Putin attempting to assert some expansionist vision of some imagined glorious Soviet past.

      artichoke in reply to thad_the_man. | March 6, 2022 at 5:00 pm

      Agree. And with the various Hitler analogies, let’s remember which side in this war has actual Nazis. Putin is doing de-Nazification, and it’s not a joke and not an unfair characterization.

        Fatkins in reply to artichoke. | March 6, 2022 at 5:18 pm

        No he isn’t he is committing war crimes against civilians. The only Hitler in this situation is Putin. How many Russians have been rounded up for protested, how many journalists has he had assassinated, how many countries has he used chemical weapons on. Ukraine is a democracy and has the ability to clean its own crap up without a dictator pretending to lend a hand.

Whatever Ukraine produces, the US could EASILY replace IF the government eased regulatory restrictions on some crops as well as on the domestic production of fertilizer (something else we buy from RUSSIA in enormous quantities).

We don’t produce our own fertilizer anymore because environment regulations has simply made it cost-prohibitive…just like so many other things. We’ve largely regulated ourselves to be dependent on despotic countries like Russia and China.

Oh, did you see the news that the US is likely going to start buying oil from….IRAN? Because of course we’re that stupid.

Let the east fight, and build Keystone XL.
My God, these people are idiots.

The question one must ask about every single ‘report’ coming out of Ukraine, no exceptions, is …

“Is it real or is it propaganda?”

History may not repeat but it rhymes…

“Remember The Maine” — William Randolph Hearst

    nordic_prince in reply to JHogan. | March 5, 2022 at 3:00 pm

    Some people wouldn’t recognize propaganda even if they started trotting out Boris and Natasha.

Looks like Russian propagandists are active here.

    Working on it.

      OwenKellogg-Engineer in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | March 5, 2022 at 4:52 pm

      Thanks Fuzzy

        You’re welcome, Owen. Russian trolls are not welcome here, but of course, neocons who support Russia for who knows what reason and can’t wait to find a new country to bomb are still welcome to share their thoughts on geopolitics. Russian trolls, no.

          CommoChief in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | March 5, 2022 at 7:25 pm

          Fuzzy,

          The neocons are folks such as Bill Kristol, Max Boot, Liz Cheney. They most definitely do not support Russia. They are globalist and support the military industrial complex. Sadly they have never met a war they didn’t want to send someone else to fight.

          Those of us not in favor of US involvement in Ukraine are for the most part opposed to further US military adventurism and more failed nation building that the globalist want to spend more American blood and treasure to engage in.

          We aren’t isolationist just anti intervention unless the clear national security interests of the American People are threatened. Boeing, Raytheon and Halliburton wanting a cash injection from increased defense spending post Iraq/Afghan pullout doesn’t qualify.

          I think you’re right about the label, Chief. What do we call these pro-war righties who are actively calling for a U.S.-led no-fly zone in Ukraine (i.e. putting us at war with Russia)? What do we call the others who think Ukraine is just getting what it deserves / and,or that Ukraine really does “belong” to Russia? We have whole new categories of political thought on the right to think about.

          I am honestly very torn here. This is an injustice on the largest scale; Russia invading Ukraine to rebuild its lost status is just wrong. Maybe I would think differently if there were some country just dying to be “liberated,” but when has that ever happened? Well, apart from the liberation of European countries after WWII. So that hacks me off.

          THEN, who can fail to see the parallels to Hitler’s Third Reich expansionism here? Does anyone really think Putin’s butthurt stops with Ukraine? Anymore than Hitler’s did after Austria, Poland, France? All the early lands Hitler took, he did under the same premise Putin is using: they belong to his nation and were not only unjustly taken but are desperate to return to the mother/fatherland. Where do Putin’s unjustly taken lands end? What about his strategic needs?

          As I said, I am torn. Do we nip this crap in the bud and stop WWIII from blasting off (and potentially going nuclear)? Or do we wait until some unfriendly nukes us and we have no choice? Either way, it’s a horrible thing. One thing I think we can be assured of is that Putin won’t stop with Ukraine; he won’t stop until he’s stopped. We just have to figure out when to do that . . . while hoping that decision is taken out of our hands.

          I don’t want to intervene, I don’t want to nation-build, and I definitely don’t want all-out war. But at the same time, we do know where this is going unless it’s stopped. So gahhh!

          CommoChief in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | March 5, 2022 at 9:07 pm

          Fuzzy

          Labels:
          1. Neocons – favor US military involvement around the world including Ukraine.
          2. MAGA Realists – favor following George Washington’s advice to avoid entangling alliances and are reluctant to send our sons and daughters to fight unless our national security interests are directly threatened.
          3. Putin enthusiasts- those who have a hard on for Putin, for reasons that escape me. The man is a thug, smart and vicious but a thug.

          One final point on this drawing of lines and with us or against us mentality being pushed. The entirety of the globalist elite, Davos crowd, who the Clinton family exemplifies, along with the never Trump Neocons are all in favor of using every tool to break Putin. Just as they were in favor of J Trudeau using similar tools v the Canadian Truckers.

          I love your clarity, Chief! I don’t give a fancy frack who supports what; I don’t live by “hating my enemies” crazy. If someone is right about something, they are right, period. I don’t care if they are Ben Crump, Hillary Clinton, or Mao himself.

          In other words, I don’t give a flying flip what anyone is saying or who they are siding with or why; I trust me, my judgement, and my beliefs. I believe what I believe and will never ever say I don’t because “the wrong person” happens to hold the same opinion on a single issue. When I start burbling about what a great leader Putin is, defunding police, opening our nation’s borders, and destroying the Constitution, you can intervene. Heh.

          CommoChief in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | March 5, 2022 at 10:02 pm

          Agreed. Politics makes for strange bedfellows. Like you I keep my own counsel, evaluate the available facts, apply common sense, my own experiences/education to make a determination and always look for secondary and tertiary consequences.

          Sometimes we don’t like the answers we discover but that’s why applying basic tests like ‘is this in the security interest of the US’ are so valuable; they keep our emotional reactions to events in check and save us from rushing to disaster.

          This invasion, fighting and destruction is bad and it’s going to get worse. Only two people can halt it without further escalation: Putin who will not and Zelenskiy who, quite understandably, doesn’t want to just yet, despite getting shafted by the globalist and neocons who delayed sending lethal aid sooner while beating their chests at Putin.

          The Biden admin is leading from behind and basically feckless and more irrelevant daily because their errors, actions and inaction are the primary cause of setting Ukraine up to fail. At least IMO. Hopefully some compromise can be reached before long to stop the fighting and halt the destruction but I fear it may be too late for the Ukrainian people.

    artichoke in reply to Petrushka. | March 6, 2022 at 5:03 pm

    Am I a Russian propagandist just for saying Russia is the better side in this war? If so, that would make people saying the opposite Nazi propagandists.

    But I’m not saying that, because your method of labeling is faulty and I do not follow it.

      Fatkins in reply to artichoke. | March 6, 2022 at 5:21 pm

      Your a Putin apologists for being so damn ignorant. If you really think Russia is the better side then you really need to do some basic god damn reading on Putin and the Ukraine

This war is about control of the European Market.

It make too much sense to purchase gas from Russia via Nordstream, and very little to ship LNG from USA.

This will backfire, and press a Union of Russia, China and Iran.

The U.S. Dollar will no longer be the petro-dollar.

And as the US Dollar is the original crypto-currency, based upon pure BS and generated by a keystroke at will…

Will become as the Lire.

NATO is a paper tiger, and the EU is a leech upon all the member Nations.

The world economic collapse is upon us, and the political solution is always the same.

War.

A few thoughts:
1. Oil – The immediate supply hasn’t been impacted yet. There was sufficient oil in transit to provide a bit of cushion. That is rapidly being expended. Stocks, commercial not strategic, were/are on the low side so that’s not a viable cushion. The current rise is on future prices based on future scarcity. Oil will continue to rise but may stabilize somewhat. Russia is maxing pipelines, small currently, to China. India is buying Russian oil. Basically the Asian and Indian markets are enough to keep Russian oil profitable even in the unlikely event Europe stops purchases. Discount on Russian oil grew to -$28 from spot price and Shell began to purchase. That demonstrates that the fear of being left holding the bag when buying Russian oil based on additional potential future sanctions has found a price. Breakeven Russian oil price is about $45 barrel. With spot at $112+ even with a $28 fear discount the Russians can sell significantly less total oil and make a profit.

2. Nat Gas – Europe, specifically GER and Italy need it and would be in a world of hurt if they stop purchasing. I honestly don’t see a disruption unless Russia chooses to do so in retaliation for sanctions. There are insufficient LNG terminals in EU to bring in and in the US to export any significant increase in LNG short term.

3. Impact of sanctions – Russia has a 13% flat tax and public debt is 20% of GDP. They raised interest rates to 20% to support their currency. They have shifted since 2014 from foreign currency reserves towards holding more gold. They can likely stabilize their currency. Next step is they might demand gold as payment for Nat gas and oil since they can’t use Euros or Dollars due to sanctions which would assist in strengthening their currency.

4. Agriculture- disruption is coming. Due to existing green policies fertilizer was already scarce. Guess who supplies EU, Africa, Central Asia with fertilizer; Russia and Belarus. Particularly potash. Ukrainian grain exports are likely to be interrupted which is a problem for central Asia and Africa. Last time wheat was this high in price we got Arab Spring.

Expect more economic disruption to come in the US as a result. Expect political disruption in Africa and Central Asia as a result. Not much media coverage of how bad the possibilities are and how quickly this border war can impact others.

I hope I am wrong.

    I agree with you, Chief. We keep thinking that the free world is self-sufficient, but the globalists have been working against that for decades.

    Let’s just hope and pray that Putin stops with Ukraine. What happens if he doesn’t is unthinkable.

      CommoChief in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | March 5, 2022 at 2:51 pm

      Agreed. Let’s hope that the Russian Oligarchs choose to stop their advance and that the Western Oligarchs stop telling the Ukrainian people to fight to last man on their behalf while they still benefit from Russian energy imports. As to unthinkable ….this is what warfare looks like. It’s not pretty it’s the quite opposite; ugly, the ugliest and most horrific thing that we do. Buildings and infrastructure are destroyed, lives ended or disrupted, refugees created, atrocities committed.

      This crisis and the dumbfounded reactions of our elites, both in the US and Europe is reminiscent of the shattered illusion at the start of WWI. The globalist are relearning the lessons of over a hundred years ago; peace is fragile and unnecessary or blindly arrogant provocation can have very real consequences that no one really wants.

      All the chest thumping, chicken hawks need to sit down, shut up and stop trying to find a way to send someone else’s sons and daughters to fight. The Ukrainian government is accepting all comers to go the front and fight so if those like Graham who are preaching about values and morals can certainly make their way to Ukraine and demonstrate their commitment to their supposed superior virtue.

        Fatkins in reply to CommoChief. | March 6, 2022 at 9:16 am

        I agree in the principles of your analysis but not really with respect to criticism of ‘chicken hawks’ etc .. what would you have done instead? I’m not seeing much in the way of actual policy differences?

          CommoChief in reply to Fatkins. | March 6, 2022 at 9:58 am

          The chicken hawks /neocons in the US such as Liz Cheney, Bill Kristol and Max Boot always seem to want to engage in what amounts to ugly American imperialism by creating/provoking conflict through their arrogant attitudes, then send someone else’s sons and daughters to fight a distant war.

          They can overcome the chicken hawk label by being personally willing to go to the conflict they created/espouse and do some of the fighting themselves. Ukraine is taking volunteers so they don’t have an excuse.

          Fatkins in reply to Fatkins. | March 6, 2022 at 11:47 am

          And what about the policies? I’ve not seen any comment from the figures you cite suggesting anything like direct engagement?

          CommoChief in reply to Fatkins. | March 6, 2022 at 12:56 pm

          Engagement with whom? By who? To do what? I honestly don’t understand your point.

          Fatkins in reply to Fatkins. | March 6, 2022 at 4:51 pm

          @commochief

          You seem to be implying that Cheney et all are advocating a more aggressive response although I’ve seen no evidence of that. They seem to be in lockstep with the Biden administration in terms of response. That makes me think that by extension you are disagreeing with the Biden response. Hence why I’m wondering what actual policies you would subscribe too instead?

          CommoChief in reply to Fatkins. | March 6, 2022 at 5:55 pm

          The neocons are arguing for a No fly zone enforced by NATO at a minimum. Graham called for the assassination of Putin. They are smearing anyone reluctant to commit the US to a potential shooting war with a nuclear armed Russia as a Putin puppet.

          This situation in Ukraine is tragic and I am very sympathetic to the plight of the Ukrainian people. I am not sympathetic enough to commit the US to a confrontation with Russia.

          Policy recommendations:
          1. Dissolve NATO; it’s purpose was to oppose the Soviets who disappeared 30 years ago. Its continued existence and expansion is problematic and a net drain on US security.
          2. Create a series of bilateral defense pacts with select Nations who share our fundamental values, fund a reliable, competent military and offer strategic benefit to the US. Won’t be more than a dozen or so nations that make the list.
          3. Develop N American energy independence by:
          A. Investing in pipelines for oil, Nat gas.
          B. Develop new fields wherever they may be
          C. Subsidize point of use Solar and battery backup + increased insulation/weatherization
          D. Deploy new Nuke power plants

          4. Restore humility to our foreign policy. Stop bullying and start convincing. Much harder and lots of State dept folks will be fired because they can’t convince of not being arrogant bullies. Stop starting wars.

          5. Reduce the size of the Army to 30 combat Brigades. Increase the Navy by adding several dozen destroyers and maybe a new class of submarines. Give the A10 to the Army. Make the AF find a usable air superiority fighter then a separate ground attack aircraft that they develop with Marine Corps Aviation and Army Aviation.

          6. Reshore to US the manufacturing or production of critical products or components. Our manufacturing capacity should be viewed as a national security issue.

          That’s a start.

          Fatkins in reply to Fatkins. | March 7, 2022 at 3:03 am

          @commochief

          I haven’t seen any support in relation to no fly zones but if that’s the case then I agree with you.

          Why anyone would vote for Lindsey Graham is beyond me, the man’s an idiot.

          With respect to policies I disagree with 1 and 2. Otherwise I think the points are valid, need fleshing out of course but I agree with the principles. I personally think new pipelines could be avoided but that assessment requires deeper knowledge than I have so worth keeping on the table while the energy infrastructure transitions.

          Fatkins in reply to Fatkins. | March 7, 2022 at 9:39 am

          @commochief

          Correction I’ve now seen Sean Hannity and Lindsey Graham back up what you say with respect to there own positions. Its pretty incredible how dumb they are.

The scary thing is that neither Putin nor Biden can survive a loss.

Putin may have underestimated the DNC.

    artichoke in reply to Petrushka. | March 6, 2022 at 5:06 pm

    Biden’s likely too old to run in 2024, and his popularity is low enough he could lose if he runs, Ukraine aside. So I wouldn’t assume he’ll get us into WW3 to enhance his 2024 election prospects.

    I just hope he’ll continue to muzzle the State Department and prevent them from starting it.

We keep hearing victory speeches from both sides, but silence is information. The lack of movement in the long convoy is information. It would appear they can’t move and can’t be resupplied. The East is shaping up as a classic urban resistance war, except Ukraine has high tech portable weapons.

I really can’t see Russia notching a win. Anything they have that looks like an actual threat is destroyed. Ukraine is saving its ammo for any real push. Their aircraft have been ineffective.

    OwenKellogg-Engineer in reply to Petrushka. | March 5, 2022 at 4:57 pm

    Agreed. There is more going on than meets the eye

    CommoChief in reply to Petrushka. | March 5, 2022 at 6:48 pm

    The Russian force N of Kiev hasn’t advanced much that’s true. Could be logistics, my bet is that’s partly true anyway. Could be lack of will/morale. But it could be that this force is doing what the Russians want it to do for now. It’s pinning in place the Ukrainian Forces in/around Kiev preventing them from going south to help keep the Black Sea around Odessa or going east to relieve Kharkiv or going southeast to confront the Russians in Marispol.

    So by remaining stationary, the Russians force the Ukrainians to give up the advantage of defensive positions to attack this force, which the Ukranians don’t appear to be doing, and effectively neutralize the defending Ukrainian forces in/around Kiev by merely threatening it v assaulting the city.

      Fatkins in reply to CommoChief. | March 6, 2022 at 9:20 am

      A long line of vehicles is not a strategy out of choice. Its a position imposed by vulnerability and poor strategic choices.

      Actually the Ukrainians are attempting to attack the convoy (there are reported attacks along the length of the convoy including blowing bridges) but given the number of fronts they probably have a lot on their plate.

      If anything its the Ukrainians that have effectively pinned down the convoy. This is by having an impact on the logistics, attacking along the line of the convoy and diminishing Russian moral with their heroic resistance.

        CommoChief in reply to Fatkins. | March 6, 2022 at 10:09 am

        Could be. On the other hand the N Western force, which is the ‘stalled’ force seems largely composed of overage reservists and conscripts so not the best troops Russia has. I think the composition of the force lends credence to the idea that it’s doing what they want: a feint to tie up Ukrainian forces and effectively render these defenders operationally moot to more import objectives in the south and east.

        No plan survives contact and the enemy always gets a vote as whether the plan works. I believe that the Russians hoped they could quickly advance and shock Ukraine into rapid collapse. When that didn’t occur they adapted and are using this force to pin defenders around Kiev while they make gains in other areas. Once they consolidate the gains they can maneuver additional forces towards Kiev, if they desire.

        That’s my analysis and I could be wrong but that seems like the most likely case, IMO.

    thad_the_man in reply to Petrushka. | March 5, 2022 at 9:57 pm

    For a good tactical perspective I suggest these three videos:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EVE8qPX9uT4
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xKFSK_9e-g4
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K5BAZ2bBUzM

    Plus whatever updates he uploads.

    The Duran has is doing an excellent job of evaluating the geopolitical/strategic perspective.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kVbrH09HYoQ&t=4s
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cH_2ts68bUE
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xsh9V8UxenI

      Fatkins in reply to thad_the_man. | March 7, 2022 at 3:12 am

      I spent time watching the videos , Jesus what a waste of time. Sounded like Putin apologists with an utterly biased perspective. What they are saying in many instances runs contrary to multiple other sources. Do with respect I’m going to bin it.

    artichoke in reply to Petrushka. | March 6, 2022 at 5:08 pm

    I keep seeing ammo that Russia captured, they’ve lost their airports, and I don’t see any stories yet about that convoy being shelled, starving, etc. Russia has the skies, surely they can airdrop supplies including food. What if it’s a strategy to control the countryside east of Kiev?

Ukraine has a few snipers watching the convoy and picking off officers, but otherwise they don’t have to do anything. It’s costing them nothing. There are crystal clear satellite images. If anything twitches, they have the ability to take out the lead vehicles. Understand they are already disabled. There are no usable shoulders. It’s a Royal snafu.

    And quite shocking if you think about it. Even if Russia really believed that Ukrainians would welcome their “liberation,” what kind of military doesn’t plan for ALL contingencies, including providing sufficient fuel and rations for your support convoy? I don’t get how Russia could be caught so flat-footed. Is it really that they just believed their own propaganda? Is it pure hubris? Have we built up a completely fake image of Russian military excellence and competence that has no basis in reality? It’s just stunning, and how horrifying for them to have the entire world see this planning and logistics disaster.

    On the bright side, Milley has said that our combat hardware won’t be ready for any battlefield for several years. Apparently, painting everything with the colors of the rainbow is proving more time-consuming than they first thought.

    “If we don’t have pink planes, purple tanks, and rainbow-camo, all piloted and worn by the most ‘diverse’ military evah!(TM), how can we even begin to think about going to war? I mean, really, we are still training all levels of the military that 2 + 2 = whatever they want! It could be yellow, or maybe 2 + 2 = groundhog. Or seaweed? It’s up to our crack military, the same non-gendered beings that will be coordinating our attacks and trying to figure out how much yellow, groundhog, and seaweed they need to hit the target,” Milley said in a recent (satiric) report. “These things take time to assess.”

      In a further statement from the Joint Chiefs, the SEALS teams, we learn, have been rebranded the Super Excellent All “Ladies” Squad. “This is our acknowledgement that we have for too long focused too much on training, excellence, and effectiveness, to the embarrassing loss of our acknowledgment that “ladies” of all stripes, biology, and even species make us stronger. To that end, I hereby dedicate the new Navy SEALS, the new and fierce, elite operators who love to sprinkle purple sparkles as they infiltrate Nordstrom’s. These SEALS are unlike any you’ve seen before; they represent all of America and wherever. They are men, women, men-women, and women-men, they are also other species of beings, like ducks and trout. And they are not opposed to colors other than purple because these are our nation’s highly trained and elite special forces and as such do not discriminate against the rainbow of available colors for their glitter bombings.”

      And even this military will ensure that its supply line is fueled, fed, and has a daily mani-pedi.

      Fatkins in reply to Fuzzy Slippers. | March 6, 2022 at 9:24 am

      Its a good question, I think the answer is that it doesn’t matter what the military strategists have thought within the Russian military its what delusions Putin has. Its a big downside of a dictator – his vision is imposed no matter how idiotic.

      As for planning for all contingencies, that’s not really an option. If you are invading a country you have to make a series of choices. Running a war is hard especially when considering the number of fronts, Its true thought that the west thought Russia would be more capable than they have demonstrated.

thad_the_man | March 5, 2022 at 10:09 pm

I barely read the conservative treehouse, but today I decided to check it out.
They had this interesting video about the situation;
https://youtu.be/8HYxdSei9ks

A long line of vehicles doesn’t seem much of a plan. Surely it’s more likely that they can’t manoeuvre and have dug themselves a massive hole. I think you are giving more credit than is due. But hey let’s see what happens.

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