[Discussion] Ukraine - Russian Invasion and Discussion

A place for aggregated discussions of a possible conflict, it’s implications and effects, news updates and personal accounts if any. If the expected conflict kicks off, I will change the title but the function will stay the same.

PiP wrote:

Maybe they touched some fentanyl.

Too good for just a 'Like'

Ukraine lowers combat call-up age to boost numbers

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has signed into law a bill lowering the military mobilisation age by two years from 27 to 25.

Kyiv has faced heavy losses on the battlefield after two years of war, whereas Russia has benefited from a sizeable advantage in manpower.

The move will allow Ukraine to call up more people to replenish its reserves, after volunteer numbers dropped.

Mr Zelensky said in December that 500,000 more soldiers were needed.

Although the bill was voted through by MPs in May 2023, it did not come into force because Mr Zelensky did not sign it.

It was not immediately clear what prompted the president to sign the bill on Tuesday, however he has previously warned of plans Russia may have to launch a spring or summer offensive this year.

Mr Zelensky's signing of the bill could signify Ukraine's effort to build up strong defensive fortifications in preparation for a Russian offensive.

Ukrainian forces had hoped to take back swathes of territory gained by Russia as well as cutting off Russian supply lines to Crimea.

But lacking air superiority and faced with formidable Russian defences, Kyiv's counter-offensive ground to a halt at the start of winter and there are fears that Russian forces could outgun Ukraine.

Lovely, if Russia decides to invade another country. Is that what triggers the “official” start of WW3?

Do they even have enough military left to invade and occupy?

Kazakhstan is nowhere near as well armed or motivated as Ukraine. All they have is rusting Soviet era rifles and trucks. They have been relying on Russia for regional security concerns as member of the Russian sphere of influence and have largely neglected their military readiness. An invasion would meet very little military resistance. It remains to be seen if the political will exists to put up much resistance through insurgency against a force that is perfectly okay with exterminating an already tiny population (population density of 18 humans/ sq mile).

I don’t doubt that it would be a quick event. Probably closer to what Putin originally imagined occurring in Ukraine in terms of a day or two.

I’m more interested in how the rest of the world would react. Would it be a bridge too far or just more of the same, “we’re concerned.”

I think he did Kazakhstan first, it would have been a "we're concerned", but Ukraine was the bridge too far.

Paleocon wrote:

Kazakhstan is nowhere near as well armed or motivated as Ukraine. All they have is rusting Soviet era rifles and trucks. They have been relying on Russia for regional security concerns as member of the Russian sphere of influence and have largely neglected their military readiness. An invasion would meet very little military resistance. It remains to be seen if the political will exists to put up much resistance through insurgency against a force that is perfectly okay with exterminating an already tiny population (population density of 18 humans/ sq mile).

Doesn't that also describe Russia?

Just did a quick Wiki check. Yeap, oil and gas. Bingo.

JC wrote:

I don’t doubt that it would be a quick event. Probably closer to what Putin originally imagined occurring in Ukraine in terms of a day or two.

I’m more interested in how the rest of the world would react. Would it be a bridge too far or just more of the same, “we’re concerned.”

How white and blonde are they?

One only needs to look at the wiki page for the Kazakh Ground Forces to know they would get roflstomped by the Russians.

"Give me more swords noble leader so that they may sheath them in the beating hearts of our enemies!"

Good interview with Bernard Henri Levy:

Ukrainian Pravda wrote:

INTERVIEWER: In Ukraine, we are very well aware that this is not just Putin's war, but Russians' war, because it’s not only Putin who is fighting against Ukrainians. Do you think that Europeans, French people, understand that as well?

LEVY:
No, probably not enough.

Europeans have a tendency to put everything on Putin's head, to neglect the huge support which he has, to neglect the penetration of the Putin ideology in the depth of Russian society, or the opposite, how the Russian society feeds the state apparatus.

European people probably neglect and underestimate that.

You can hear people saying a lot in France: "Okay, Putin is one thing, the Russian people is another one." You hear that a lot, which is, of course, an absurdity.

Or that athletes are just athletes and should not be blamed for Russia’s policy.

Yes, I hear all this bullsh*t.

What is sometimes difficult to understand is the nature of authoritarian or totalitarian states.

The real dictatorship is never one man imposing his will on passive people. There is a real dialectic and inter-reaction between the people and the leader.

They feed each other, they nourish each other.

Ukraine will be outgunned by Russia 10 to 1 in weeks without US help, top Europe general says

WASHINGTON (AP) — The top general for U.S. forces in Europe told Congress Wednesday that Ukraine will be outgunned 10 to one by Russia within a matter of weeks if Congress does not find a way to approve sending more ammunition and weapons to Kyiv soon.

The testimony from Army Gen. Christopher Cavoli, head of U.S. European Command, and Celeste Wallander, assistant secretary of defense for international security affairs, comes as Congress enters pivotal weeks for voting for aid for Ukraine, but there’s no guarantee funding will be improved in time.

Ukraine has been rationing its munitions as Congress has delayed passing its $60 billion supplemental bill.

“They are now being outshot by the Russian side five to one. So the Russians fire five times as many artillery shells at the Ukrainians than the Ukrainians are able to fire back. That will immediately go to 10 to one in a matter of weeks,” Cavoli said. “We’re not talking about months. We’re not talking hypothetically.”

Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson has been trying to find a way forward for the bill that would fund new rounds of munitions production at U.S. firms to enable the Pentagon to then rush more munitions to Ukraine. Johnson is trying to bring it to the floor for a House vote, but he is facing concerns from members who cite domestic needs, including border security.

Prederick wrote:

Ukraine will be outgunned by Russia 10 to 1 in weeks without US help, top Europe general says

Republican House Speaker Mike Johnson has been trying to find a way forward for the bill that would fund new rounds of munitions production at U.S. firms to enable the Pentagon to then rush more munitions to Ukraine. Johnson is trying to bring it to the floor for a House vote, but he is facing concerns from members who cite domestic needs, including border security.

I think "trying" is being overly generous.

Oh I think they want to - it is millions if not billions in the hands of the military industrial complex and they donate a lot to buy those reps.

It is just about balancing graft with keeping poor voters pissed enough at brown people to keep them voting.

It is a tougher balancing act than you might think.

The issue is that half the Republican Party is a fully owned and operated subsidiary of the FSB.

Look, I get that as a joke. But let's not kid ourselves that our only issue is that there are a bunch of spies running around putting paper bags filled with cash into the hands of legislative directors in Congressman Smith's office. There isn't enough money to make that happen or to single handedly fund half the GOPs elections.

There is a distinct subset of electeds that are hard core conspiracy types that really do embrace the Joker mindset. Those people are f*cking up the legislation.

There is a broader problem in the GOP of being squeezed to the margins, from a confluence of Murdoch News, aging pop, gerry-mandering, the system itself and Citizens United. And cynicism. And Rush. And prosperity gospel. And a whole bunch of other stuff.

AND we're going through a complete reset of political alignments (happens every few generation America).

sh*t be complex.

Regardless, the price is cheaper today to stop RUS in its tracks. Or we can pay more later.

Meanwhile, as long as this lady is, effectively, in control of the Republicans in Congress, Ukraine will get no aid.

Relatedly:

As president, Donald Trump “made it very clear” that he thought Ukraine “must be part of Russia”, his former adviser Fiona Hill says in a new book about US national security under threat from Russia and China.

“Trump made it very clear that he thought, you know, that Ukraine, and certainly Crimea, must be part of Russia,” Hill, senior director for European and Russian affairs on the US national security council between 2017 and 2019, tells David Sanger, a New York Times reporter and author of New Cold Wars: China’s Rise, Russia’s Invasion, and America’s Struggle to Defend the West.

“He really could not get his head around the idea that Ukraine was an independent state.”

This, Sanger writes, meant Trump’s view of Ukraine was “essentially identical” to that of Vladimir Putin, the Russian president who would order an invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, a year after Trump left office.

Before triggering the invasion, Putin said in a speech: “Ukraine is an inalienable part of our own history, culture and spiritual space.”

Last month, in a speech marking 10 years since the annexation of Crimea, Putin declared that parts of occupied Ukraine were part of a “New Russia”.

Yep, and those exact same arguments apply to Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.

Which are already part of NATO.

So Transactional Don, who has yet to make a long-term decision in his life, could be the guy to determine whether to man the ramparts when Putin decides to gobble up the next little part of Greater Deutschland, I mean, New Russia.

The US is going to be fine.

But this is like watching Quill get goaded into punching Thanos instead of helping to take off the gauntlet. Victory is right there.

But instead we're going to do this the hard way.

I just hope my kids don't have to be Greatest Gen Vol 2.

The mood of the reporting on this war seems to have taken a very recent turn towards "if we don't do something very quickly, Ukraine is f*cked."

Ukraine could face defeat in 2024. Here's how that might look

The former commander of the UK's Joint Forces Command has warned that Ukraine could face defeat by Russia in 2024.

General Sir Richard Barrons has told the BBC there is "a serious risk" of Ukraine losing the war this year.

The reason, he says, is "because Ukraine may come to feel it can't win".

"And when it gets to that point, why will people want to fight and die any longer, just to defend the indefensible?"

Ukraine is not yet at that point.

But its forces are running critically low on ammunition, troops and air defences. Its much-heralded counter-offensive last year failed to dislodge the Russians from ground they had seized and now Moscow is gearing up for a summer offensive.

So what will that look like and what are its likely strategic objectives?

"The shape of the Russian offensive that's going to come is pretty clear," says Gen Barrons.

"We are seeing Russia batter away at the front line, employing a five-to-one advantage in artillery, ammunition, and a surplus of people reinforced by the use of newish weapons."

These include the FAB glide bomb, an adapted Soviet-era "dumb bomb" fitted with fins, GPS guidance and 1500kg of high explosive, that is wreaking havoc on Ukrainian defences.

"At some point this summer," says Gen Barrons, "we expect to see a major Russian offensive, with the intent of doing more than smash forward with small gains to perhaps try and break through the Ukrainian lines.

"And if that happens we would run the risk of Russian forces breaking through and then exploiting into areas of Ukraine where the Ukrainian armed forces cannot stop them."

But where?

Last year the Russians knew exactly where Ukraine was likely to attack - from the direction of Zaporizhzhia south towards the Sea of Azov. They planned accordingly and successfully blunted Ukraine's advance.

Now the boot is on the other foot as Russia masses its troops and keeps Kyiv guessing where it is going to attack next.

Facing a Republican revolt, House Speaker Johnson pushes ahead on US aid for Ukraine, allies

WASHINGTON (AP) — Defiant and determined, House Speaker Mike Johnson pushed back Tuesday against mounting Republican anger over his proposed U.S. aid package for Ukraine, Israel and other allies, and rejected a call to step aside or risk a vote to oust him from office.

“I am not resigning,” Johnson said after a testy morning meeting of fellow House Republicans at the Capitol

Johnson referred to himself as a “wartime speaker” of the House and indicated in his strongest self-defense yet he would press forward with a U.S. national security aid package, a situation that would force him to rely on Democrats to help pass it, over objections from his weakened majority.

“We are simply here trying to do our jobs,” Johnson said, calling the motion to oust him “absurd ... not helpful.”

Tuesday brought a definitive shift in tone from both the House Republicans and the speaker himself at a pivotal moment as the embattled leader tries, against the wishes of his majority, to marshal the votes needed to send the stalled national security aid for Israel, Ukraine and other overseas allies to passage.

Johnson appeared emboldened by his meeting late last week at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort in Florida when the Republican former president threw him a political lifeline with a nod of support. At his own press conference Tuesday, Johnson spoke of the importance of ensuring Trump, who is now at his criminal trial in New York, is re-elected to the White House.

It's a sign of how thoroughly the inmates are running the Republican asylum, that Democrats are seriously considering banding together to save Johnson's speakership. Like, that's how insane the rest of them are.

Russia's meat grinder soldiers - 50,000 confirmed dead

Just insane that they've absolutely thrown away at least 50,000 lives so casually, and still have, what, a 6/5 chance of winning the war at worst? And domestically, there is effectively zero meaningful resistance.

The body count of Republican Speakers of the House may rival the body count of main characters in Shogun.

Prederick wrote:

Russia's meat grinder soldiers - 50,000 confirmed dead

Just insane that they've absolutely thrown away at least 50,000 lives so casually, and still have, what, a 6/5 chance of winning the war at worst? And domestically, there is effectively zero meaningful resistance.

They pretty much assess that anyone willing to go to war is not someone they wish to help build the future of Russia.

I don't think it's the Speakers so much as the House Freedom Caucus. The Speakers have all been willing to go along with the Senate and the President on Ukraine funding; it's the lunatic fringe that has enough votes to tank the entire process. Blaming the Speakers is like blaming Biden for not being able to pass legislation.