Ukraine (Date: Nov. 2023)

Latest News Forums Discussion Forum Ukraine (Date: Nov. 2023)

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  • #93114 Reply

      Once upon a time 🙂 on this blog one of the commentators used the phrase “who would have thunk.”
      This phrase greatly amused me; I was truly delighted by the courage and assertiveness with which the person penetrated into English grammar and stabbed this poor irregular English verb with their unbending confidence.
      This phrase sometimes pops into my head and every time it produces the same comic effect.
      With your permission,

      Who would have thunk that Peter Jackson wrongly chose Cate Blanchett

      when actually the Lady of Lorien is×9/AfterlightImage-1.JPG

      #93115 Reply

        You may be interested to read Scott Ritter’s piece:
        The End of US Nuclear Superiority.

        In it he discusses the move to “modernise” the USA nuclear deterrent hardware and some history of the various treaties to limit the arms race.

        #93118 Reply

          ET thx for linking Ritter here

          * * *


          you must have posted a very bad Lady of Lorien because my browser won´t show the image under your 2nd link (did you possibly abuse an image of Mr. Putin disguised as Elf?).

          As to WMDs, I had begun 2023 with the intention to try finding out more about the possibilities in Germany for any action.
          But after contacting a couple of people it seems completely fruitless to even attempt anything for now.

          Those people with access to German governmental offices and the SoS have 0 inclination in acting independently of the US, lest of NATO.

          And the major problem is: the US has ZERO intention to get off the WMD train. And in fact naturally the US IMC is exhilerated over this war.

          In that light the failures described by Scott Ritter – I don´t know the details of how much RU has done about its SSBNs and its radar systems and early warning etc. – in how far these issues troubling RU High Command a couple of years ago – have been solved. So if Ritter is playing the card of RU superiority or US deterioration I am not so sure if that´s not something those very people he tries to counter in fact love hearing (knowing that it´s not that much of a problem since for that many years and bilions of rubles are necessary.)

          Nothing better for Senate than RU increasing arms spending and experts exagerating the RU threat – that has been working since 1945. Today we know much of what really was at hand.

          I would have tried more as I had planned but I simply don´t find the time. And now with the German LEFT PARTY in disarray and a new left party in the process of founding I wouldn´t exactly know what German congresswoman to contact and inquire.
          We are in limbo.

          —Kissinger died btw….

          Lavrov spoke about this just recently. Can´t find it right now. But the RUs for now are playing the old Cold War game.

          So far the only thing that works is NATO´s high command: They know what WWIII means.

          Whenever we had a dangerous sit. like the SU almost shooting down the British AWACS one year ago or that laughable rocket debris in Poland – they tried to tame the public. Or didn´t even leak the info.

          Of course we have to stop all this. If anything happens unintended – which is the major threat – we are toast.

          But the people who have been involved in these organisations – disarmament are currently taking a new gasp (and among them Russia-hatred is considerable).

          #93119 Reply

            not a biggie but still
            (I have tried to archive the article AND google-translate it – that did not work. So anyone hurry up reading now the text if interested. It´s not long):

            “Failed peace talks in the Ukraine war: Now the Russian chief negotiator speaks out

            What happened during the negotiations between Russia and Ukraine in Turkey? Now the Russian representative gives his own version.”



            the latest RAND report

            “Inflection Point

            How to Reverse the Erosion of U.S. and Allied Military Power and Influence”


            “The U.S. defense strategy and posture have become insolvent. The tasks that the nation expects its military forces and other elements of national power to do internationally exceed the means that are available to accomplish those tasks. Sustained, coordinated efforts by the United States and its allies are necessary to deter and defeat modern threats, including Russia’s ongoing war in Ukraine and reconstituted forces and China’s economic takeoff and concomitant military modernization. This report offers ideas on how to address shortcomings in defense preparations.(…)”

            Frankly I think this is in major part a ruse. The US is so overwhelmingly powerful. Not being able to produce artillery shells is nothing they could not change if the well-being of their nation was depending on it.

            The US Air Force has waged war against RU without even touching their own arsenal of 12.000 fighter jets. What would have happened had the Americans dispatched 2000 of those to UKR and neighbouring countries for action. Apart from WWIII. They spent well over $100 bn. on military aid to UKR 60% of which are coming back directly to the US. EU has depleted its own arsenal and has to buy new stuff from the US. And so on.

            #93122 Reply

              since TWITTER became X as an outsider I cannot read Pavel Podvig´s Tweets any more. He was one of my major sources for a year.

              On his site there are a few older entries (but nothing comparable to his daily commentary on TWITTER)

              this thread e.g. with older texts on RU´s early warning radar system.

              But those are rather just documenting new satellites launched. No geopolitical military analysis.

              The major issue has always been as I said several months ago that the RUssians have bad early warning.
              They are trying to solve this of course but it takes time. And who knows how the rules of the game will have changed in 10 years due to drone tech.

              One problem since you mentioned it: With suspension of New START no side is obliged to inform the other about the status of their nuclear arsenal bi-annually any more.

              #93123 Reply

                and this just came out. I don´t know where it would fit better:

                Brown Univers. with its Cost-Of-War-Project, new paper:

                “United States Counterterrorism Operations Under the Biden Administration”


                “(…)Between 2021 and 2023, the U.S. government conducted counterterrorism operations in 78 countries. These operations include ground combat in at least nine countries and air strikes in at least four countries during the first three years of the Biden Administration. Though the total number of countries with U.S. counterterrorism operations has decreased slightly from 2018-2020 – from 85 countries – the counterterrorism footprint remains remarkably similar to what it was under the Trump Administration.

                Many U.S. military operations are not included in the report – notably, those aimed at what U.S. officials and media identify as the military threat posed by Russia and China, the focus of much current U.S. foreign policy; military bases that have housed counterterrorism operations; arms sales to foreign governments; and all deployments of U.S. special operations forces and Central Intelligence Agency operations. Further, the map does not display “military information support operations,” or “psychological operations,” which the U.S. military carries out in many countries on the map and beyond, such as in Iran. All of these are significant elements of the bigger picture of U.S. counterterrorism strategy but beyond the scope of the current data set.

                The map illustrates that the war launched by the United States government in response to the 9/11 terror attacks continues.

                #93125 Reply

                  since TWITTER became X as an outsider I cannot read Pavel Podvig´s Tweets any more. He was one of my major sources for a year.

                  The Nitter service acts as a proxy for anonymous X/Twitter access:


                  The initial dark appearance can distracting, but it can be changed easily by clicking the cog icon ⚙️ (‘Preferences’) on the top right-hand side and setting the ‘Theme’ to “Auto (Twitter)”. I recommend you also tick the option for ‘Infinite scrolling (experimental, requires Javascript)’ to mimic Twitter’s behaviour when viewing long threads. These options will be stored as a cookie in your browser cache, so you need to have cookies (and Javascript) enabled for the website.

                  #93132 Reply
                  Pears Morgaine

                    Ritter seemingly unaware, or not wanting to draw attention to, the Bulava missile’s troubled development, 6 out of 13 trial launches failed and it still suffers reliability problems despite the successful launch he refers to. The nuclear-powered Burevestnik cruise missile remains experimental and may never enter service because of its cost, it also leaves a wake of radioactive fallout behind it and an earlier test resulted in an explosion which killed 5 scientists.

                    #93133 Reply

                      thank you for drawing my attention to these annoying shortcomings!
                      What do you think is the best way to deal with this:
                      – allocate more money to modernize our nuclear weapons, or
                      – launch a preemptive nuclear strike on our enemies with what we already have today?

                      #93134 Reply

                        Pears. I think the point Ritter and Tatyana are making is that there is no current apparatus nor willingness for ongoing engagement, diplomatic or otherwise, to limit the potential for an arms race. USA and Russia have both pulled out from previous treaties and neither seems inclined to enter into negotiation.

                        My own view is that the nuclear explosive cat is already out of the science bag and it’ll never be put back in again. Development of bombs, their delivery vehicles and defenses against same will continue clandestinely or more publicly regardless of treaties. And it won’t be just USA and Russia.

                        #93135 Reply

                          MOD, thank you very much!

                          #93146 Reply


                            Summary of an interview with one of the most popular German political scientists and theorists on power (a miniature Kissinger) – and dumb like shit IMHO – (typical bestseller idiot with various high level posts in academia but little substance to his work):

                            “The dream of a European nuclear suitcase: Political scientist calls for Europe’s nuclear armament

                            “Europe must develop nuclear capabilities”: Berlin political scientist Herfried Münkler calls for more European commitment to building a nuclear deterrent against Putin.”


                            p.s. the only problem he won´t solve, WMDs are darn expensive. And that won´t change. I am not sure why he puts out this crap. If they do realize it in order to build an arsenal so the US may go all in against China, then we are in big trouble. Because this level of insanity was not even accepted during the Cold War. Even hawkish JFK blocked WMDs for Europe.

                            (sry but whenever I hear this guy I explode. Whenever I hear one of these privileged academia mafiosi speak in this incompetent and irresponsible way about nukes. Just think of Dan Ellsberg, sigh.)

                            #93155 Reply

                              2 pieces by reliable german-foreign-policy-blog on how Germany officially at least is not willing to give up pushing against Russia.

                              These people are dumb dumb dumb.
                              And malicious. Which is even worse.


                              “Baerbock wants to do “everything” to ensure that Ukraine can launch a new military offensive in 2024. US experts are calling for the conflict to be frozen and for only weak security guarantees for Kiev.”



                              “Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock raised the prospect of a renewed Ukrainian military offensive at the meeting with her NATO counterparts that ended yesterday. Baerbock confirmed in Brussels that “everything is being done” to ensure that Ukraine “can also liberate villages and cities next year.” While the minister pushed ahead with slogans of perseverance, military officers at NATO headquarters doubted that the Ukrainian armed forces could still achieve success against the Russian troops: “Nobody wants to talk about a counter-offensive next spring,” confirms an insider. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg claimed that Ukraine had achieved a “great success” by recovering “50 percent of the territory that Russia had occupied” – a face-saving description for Kiev of the failed counteroffensive that is likely to be a transition to a freeze to accompany the front. US experts are once again calling for a transition from an attempt to strike back at Russia militarily to a strategy of containment. It is said that Kiev can receive security guarantees – but only non-binding ones like the Philippines.”


                              ““Armed to the teeth”
                              Berlin and Brussels are discussing financing increasing military budgets: through rearmament funds à la the Corona reconstruction fund or through the cancellation of public holidays. Well-known journalist calls for the EU to have nuclear weapons.”



                              “Despite rapidly increasing military spending, Berlin and Brussels are pushing for further steps to increase national defense budgets in the EU. The German government has managed to use accounting tricks to increase the armed forces budget to around two percent of gross domestic product in one fell swoop. Next year, another 19.2 billion euros from the special debts are to be added to the regularly growing defense budget, which in Berlin are still veiledly called “special assets” despite a reprimand from the Federal Audit Office. As soon as this disappears in a few years, Defense Minister Boris Pistorius wants to increase the defense budget by 23 billion euros. In order to raise the funds, one could simply cancel two public holidays, suggests the director of the German Council for Foreign Policy (DGAP), Guntram Wolff. At the suggestion of Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas, an armament fund modeled on the Covid-19 reconstruction fund is being discussed in the EU – with a volume in the three-digit billion euro range. At the same time, calls for nuclear armament of the EU are becoming louder in Berlin.”

                              #93156 Reply

                                2 short pieces by left daily “Junge Welt”

                                a short commentary by MP Sevim Dagdelen who with several other frm high-level MPs of THE LEFT PARTY has now joined a new left party the “Alliance Sarah Wagenknecht” (Sarah Wagenknecht the most prominent DIE LINKE member next to old horse Gregor Gysi who stayed with DIE LINKE, whose parliamentary group however will dissolve in January I think.)

                                About German war loans in 1914 and today´s military spending:

                                “Decision day – Liebknecht’s No to war”


                                “Unconditional war support for Ukraine with now 50 billion euros in tax money, sanctions against Russia, which brought with them the highest real wage loss for employees in the history of the Federal Republic, and budget planning for 2024 with 90 billion euros, more than 20 percent for the military and weapons provides. There is not a faction in the German Bundestag that opposes this toxic traffic light policy mix. (…)

                                Over 5.5 million people in Germany can no longer heat adequately, a doubling since the start of energy sanctions against Russia. The share value of Rheinmetall, on the other hand, has risen by over 250 percent since the traffic light coalition took office.”


                                “NATO plans”
                                “Main enemies marked – Russia in its sights, China as a long-term goal: NATO wants greater influence in the “southern neighborhood”


                                This is about the various plans by NATO to enhance presence in Africa to contain increasing influence of Russia (is this actually true or just some half-baked propaganda ruse?) and the Middle East to counter China.

                                But while China is doing business the West is sending in its WMD equipped military “defense” alliance.

                                #93179 Reply


                                  Sry if this is a bit excessive. But I was happy to make use of the newly gained access to Podvig´s thread looking into the Burevestnik issue that you brought back to memory:

                                  (I myself have no idea what happened of course):

                                  I know that the Bulletin reported it 2019 but the eventual source were unnamed US officials and Jeffrey Lewis´ Institute monitoring via satellite.

                                  The news came from those sources. Lewis however was himself – apparently – looking for confirmation from the government which were those US officials. So that perspective was a closed circle of limited evidence.

                                  Pavel Podvig whose Twitter thx to MOD I can now mine for info again is very scientific on these issues and he said in 2020 he doesn´t really know. Could be or not.

                                  Here his Tweets via search term “Nyonoksa” (“Burevestnik” wouldn´t bring results, oddly)


                                  June 17 2023
                                  “There was a story involving NORSAR around Nyonoksa in 2019. They reported a second explosion and then realized that it was some mining in Finland.”

                                  Oct 21 2020
                                  I think it’s possible that whatever happened in Nyonoksa was not a full-scale test. I still don’t think they would have moved actual test so close to a city

                                  This is very interesting, of course. But it also adds to my doubts that the Nyonoksa incident in 2019 was Burevestnik. I’m not saying it wasn’t, but the pattern is rather different

                                  Podvig´s latest link for an altern. explanation was this short differing explanation (of whatever did or did not happen)

                                  “New data sheds further light on description of incidents reported in North-Russia – NORSAR’s analysis of seismic and infrasound data reported two separate events of explosive nature near Archangelsk in North-Russia.”


                                  Of course each tweet has a couple of exchanges with other Tweeters.

                                  p.s. The bottom-line: from my conversations with WMD experts in the last 2 years, and from studying the history of early nukes, I have learned that these things are extremely tricky to assess with 100% certainty. Since the act of gathering the data is mostly from afar by abstract means. So the real causes can be very different by nature from what the scientists from their ideological POV may want to assume.

                                  Of course I couldn´t care less if those missiles work or not. None of any those evil things should function. But that´s a childish attitude.

                                  #93187 Reply

                                    “A Skeptic”´s Substack:

                                    “American journalist Seymour Hersh claims, citing anonymous US officials, that Russia and Ukraine are allegedly conducting secret peace negotiations along the Gerasimov-Zaluzhny line, despite the objections of Zelensky and the White House.

                                    In an article on the Substack platform, Hersh wrote that the issue of possible fixation of borders along the current front line with the retention of Crimea and the liberated territories of the DPR, LPR, Kherson and Zaporozhye regions for the Russian Federation is allegedly being discussed; in exchange, an option is being considered in which Kiev could join NATO, but with a commitment that the alliance will not station troops or offensive weapons there.

                                    “The American official said that Zelensky was made to understand that it was not him, but “the military that would solve this problem, and negotiations would continue with or without you.” “If necessary, we will pay for your trip to the Caribbean,” the American official told me,” wrote Hersh.”

                                    #93203 Reply

                                      via Pavel Podvig´s Twitter:

                                      from year 2020:

                                      “Foundations of State Policy of the Russian Federation in the Area of Nuclear Deterrence”

                                      Informal translation by the CNA Russia Studies Program


                                      short summary + pdf with 12 page document

                                      #93206 Reply

                                        info on the past week & fun commentary by Alex Christoforou in his latest video on RU/UKR/US/EU

                                        – Mrs. Zelensky apparently wants to go back into movie business with her husband who should leave politics in her view.
                                        – Poroshenko wants to leave UKR but can’t
                                        – 2,3 mio. RU army, with over 1 mio. standing planned
                                        – on Hersh’s report about secret talks between US-UKR which I quoted above, which Christoforou doesn’t really buy (neither do I)

                                        between 0:00 – 25:00


                                        #93217 Reply

                                          via “A Sceptic” Substack:

                                          The Swedish subsidiary of the British defense concern BAE Systems has declined to establish its factories in Ukraine

                                          BAE Systems Hagglund division will not manufacture CV9040 BMP in Ukraine, citing the high risks of bombing by Russia, as stated in the concern’s announcement.

                                          This is a true support. Come for the promised armored vehicles when hostilities end, as they say.

                                          From the Washington Post 2 days ago:

                                          During one visit to Wiesbaden, Milley spoke with Ukrainian special operations troops — who were working with American Green Berets — in the hope of inspiring them ahead of operations in enemy-controlled areas:

                                          “There should be no Russian who goes to sleep without wondering if they’re going to get their throat slit in the middle of the night,” Milley said, according to an official with knowledge of the event. “You gotta get back there, and create a campaign behind the lines.”

                                          See WaPo complete article:

                                          “Miscalculations, divisions marked offensive planning by U.S., Ukraine”
                                          by Washington Post Staff
                                          Dec. 4th 2023


                                          #93218 Reply

                                            Nicolai Petro with what may appear a dovish piece:

                                            “Could Russia play a role in Ukraine’s reconstruction?
                                            Reconciliation, not retribution, is key to a post-war Ukraine”


                                            However who has read his work, knows that Petro is well aware of the complex nature of the RU/US history and of the realities of power politics (he has seen and heard enough.)

                                            But still, he is optimistic and unwilling it seems to give into the pessimistic views many of us are overwhelmed with.
                                            I do find that remarkable. His personal experience must offer him cause to stick to that kind of optimism.

                                            Once asked by Anatol Lieven where that came from, Petro suggested looking at his children and his students, realizing that for younger generations the grievances of their parents and grand-parents are often just grey history and mean little for their own feelings and prospective thoughts. Which has undoubtedly something to it.

                                            A little more Chomsky and Petro in all of us might be helpful.

                                            #93219 Reply

                                              part 1 of a conversation between Nicolai Petro and “Neutrality Studies”

                                              “Neocons Still Can’t Believe Russia Defeated Them”


                                              #93221 Reply

                                                part 2 of the conversation between Nicolai Petro and “Neutrality Studies”

                                                “How The War In Ukraine Will End”


                                                #93225 Reply

                                                  Seems like Ukraine and west are getting a bit desperate:

                                                  Zelensky party MP tells Ukrainian women to go to the front lines


                                                  Send Ukrainian men home to fight – German MP


                                                  #93227 Reply

                                                    German MP Kiesewetter has been parroting this sick hawkish line for 2 years now. He is an idiot. By law, so far, Ukrainians cannot simply be sent back.

                                                    * * *

                                                    Branko Marcetic sums up how peace negotiations were sabotaged by the West, which means that its actually accepted by the MSM now. One way or the other.

                                                    As I regard Marcetic as a link between established “legacy” media views and the more progressive altern. platforms.
                                                    This is his Responsible Statecraft piece from Monday:

                                                    “Did the West deliberately prolong the Ukraine war? – Mounting evidence proves that we cannot believe anything our officials say about the futility of negotiations.


                                                    As usual with extensive source links.

                                                    Among others the NYT, where Biden privately conceded that the world has not been so near to WWIII in 60 years. (Tell us something we did not know, old man.) Here the archived version which is good for a sack of laughter, it´s so dumb and insulting.

                                                    “In Dealing With Putin Threat, Biden Turns to Lessons of Cuban Missile Crisis
                                                    President Biden has mused publicly on whether there might be an “off-ramp” for nuclear threats from the Russian leader that invoke Cold War rhetoric.”

                                                    Oct. 7th 2022



                                                    “has plenty of steps remaining on the escalation ladder: He could conduct exercises with his nuclear-ready troops, he could step up cyberattacks outside Ukraine’s borders and he could make use of chemical weapons, as he has done in the past, against dissidents and other targets. Then, of course, there is the possibility of attacks on energy infrastructure — perhaps similar to what happened last week, mysteriously, to the Nord Stream I and II gas pipelines.”

                                                    But at least also admissions like:

                                                    “But as one senior European diplomat said earlier this week, when the history of this era is written, many will be shocked at how much work was underway to assess the risks of a nuclear detonation — and to think about how to deter it. It is a hard topic to talk about in public for most officials, for fear of inducing public panic or market sell-offs.”

                                                    So, I guess, the Russians simply had not much alternative than to play hardball with this kind of crooked people – at the expense of the Ukrainian people, who were idiotic enough to fall for the war propaganda trap of 5000 years and went to the front to defend their home – Why?

                                                    But even on these pages there were voices who found it sensible and the thing to do – taking up arms.

                                                    30 years ago the GREENs had a slogan: “Imagine there is war and nobody goes there.”

                                                    This would have been the chance to in fact prove that we have developed as a species.
                                                    Apparently we haven´t.

                                                    #93351 Reply

                                                      An explosive trial in Kiev has produced evidence that the 2014 Maidan massacre was false flag event, calculated by nationalist forces to trigger regime change.


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