Patterico's Pontifications

2/20/2022

Developing Story: Russian Military Reportedly Given Invasion Orders

Filed under: General — JVW @ 9:55 am



[guest post by JVW]

Developments from today’s news shows:

The U.S. has obtained intelligence that Russian officers have received orders to launch an invasion into Ukraine. CBS News national security correspondent David Martin confirmed the information during an appearance on Face the Nation Sunday.

The intelligence suggests that Russian commanders are making military preparations and “doing everything that American commanders would do once they got the order to proceed,” Martin said.

Earlier Sunday, both the State department and Pentagon said the U.S. was still pulling all the diplomatic stops to attempt to de-escalate the Russia-Ukraine crisis as an incursion becomes increasingly probable.

Speaking on CNN’s State of the Union, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said that Russian president Vladimir Putin’s positioning of forces in Ukraine’s immediate geographical neighborhood indicted an impending incursion.

“He’s followed the script almost to the letter,” he said.

It’s a bit mystifying why the Biden Administration has spent the past couple of weeks pushing the idea that Russia is on the verge of invading, despite the Ukrainian president’s pleas to tone down the rhetoric. In my unmatched cynicism I tend to believe that the Biden Administration wants to convey that they saw this coming all along in case it comes to fruition, and they want to be able to claim that they forced Russia to stand down in case Vladimir Putin changes his mind. As one Internet wag put it, I’m going to wait to see what John Kerry’s assessment of the situation is before I chime in, because he’s never wrong.

– JVW

281 Responses to “Developing Story: Russian Military Reportedly Given Invasion Orders”

  1. Gonna be epic when Germany changes its mind and decides that rather than pull out of the Nord Steam 2 deal with Russia, they will pursue a separate diplomatic track to convince Putin to stand down and withdraw his troops. Which Putin will gladly do after he has made his point at our expense.

    JVW (ee64e4)

  2. Jen psaki: Long has Lord Biden foretold of this doom!

    JVW: Fortold and done nothing!

    felipe (484255)

  3. Did you read the transcript of what the Prime Minister Ukraine said in a suitably oblique reply to Biden?

    “Someone is lying”

    steveg (e81d76)

  4. Let’s assume you are an American president who receives pretty good intelligence that Russia plans to invade on a particular date and make up excuses for doing so.

    Is there a better way of perhaps deterring that invasion then publicly announcing that Russia has plans to invade imminently and will make up fake provocations to justify it?

    Victor (d907ee)

  5. “Suitably oblique” means Biden has leveraged Ukraine before and he needs those Javelin missiles.
    Where are those great American Patriot Vindmans when they are really needed? I guess they only work for one side of America. Hopefully they are on their way out of the Kyiv Hotel Buffett Line and off to show Ukrainian troops how to actually hit something with the Javelin missiles

    steveg (e81d76)

  6. Zelensky: Vovotchka, you really going to invade?
    Putin: Does GUM tell Tsum, Volodya?
    Zeleansky: This isn’t going to mean the end of my salary and perks, is it, Vovotchka?
    Putin: It doesn’t have to, Volodya.
    Zelensky: What kind of deal did you have with Yanukovych, Vovotchka?
    Putin: Just trust me, Volodya! Just trust me!

    nk (1d9030)

  7. I’m probably wrong.

    nk (1d9030)

  8. I doubt that is a deterrent to Putin. Coaches, players and everyone in the arena used to yell that Kareem Abdul-Jabber was going to his right hand sky hook and he still would score 30.
    Europe is still in winter and Germany in particular needs Russian fuel to heat homes or people will die. I don’t know how you sanction Russia’s fuel sales capability while gutting our energy production here. Two years ago we could have taken up the slack in natural gas, today not so easily

    steveg (e81d76)

  9. The world’s going to Hell; Biden is going to Delaware.

    … and Putin smiled.

    ______

    A reminder: 60 years ago this day, February 20, 1962, when confidence overruled incompetence… and America truly was great:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2ubC5lo4fiM

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  10. It’s a bit mystifying why the Biden Administration has spent the past couple of weeks pushing the idea that Russia is on the verge of invading, despite the Ukrainian president’s pleas to tone down the rhetoric.

    Mystifying?

    No. It’s not.
    Biden is incompetent. And has surrounded himself with fellow incompetents.
    Which is why a deck full of Joe’s jokers keep losing to Vlad’s pair of deuces.

    … and Putin smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  11. I think that assuming Putin plans to stop in Ukraine is a mistake. We should be dropping a few divisions into Germany, if not Poland. We used to practice that a lot.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  12. I think that planning for how it’s spun, rather than how it goes down, makes Blinken the very model of a modern major bureaucrat.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  13. John Noble played Biden in LoTR. Brad Dourif played Blinken.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  14. Well, Mr Putin, now that you’ve restored the USSR, where are you going?

    “I’m going to China Disney World.”

    Kevin M (38e250)

  15. Is there a better way of perhaps deterring that invasion then publicly announcing that Russia has plans to invade imminently and will make up fake provocations to justify it?

    The problem is that Germany doesn’t want to get its hair mussed, of give up all those great deals that they’ve signed with Putin.

    And look at all these pipelines all going to places in the former Warsaw Bloc, including East Germany, the Baltics, Poland, etc. Coincidence?

    NATO has no intention of lifting a finger, and has told Biden so. This is just PR.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  16. Brainfarting Biden:

    Cancel weekly trip to Delaware; stay in Washington. Announce plans to again go to Delaware. Cancel again; stay in Washington.

    Incompetence. And in all likelihood… incontinence. Too much garlic and butter in your Chicken Kiev, Joe? Relax; they’re sh-tting themselves in Ukraine, as well.

    … and Putin smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  17. JVW- Could be the Hunter Strategy 😉

    Gold is at $1900/oz; Oil at $92/bbl… and both climbing…. very good for the Biden family investment portfolio. Doesn’t hurt Vlad’s either. 😉

    … and the Military Industrial Complex smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  18. . . . pretty good intelligence. . .

    At least as good as the intelligence Bush got about WMDs in Iraq or the intelligence Obama got about the Arab Spring? Again, this is exactly why we need to wait and hear what John Kerry thinks about all of this.

    JVW (ee64e4)

  19. The problem is that Germany doesn’t want to get its hair mussed, of give up all those great deals that they’ve signed with Putin.

    Let’s just give the Eastern part of Germany back to Russia and be done with it. It was a fun 32-year run while it lasted.

    JVW (ee64e4)

  20. I think that assuming Putin plans to stop in Ukraine is a mistake.

    Nah. Putin will never assault a NATO member country with Article 5 around. Those border nations not NATO members now are at risk. Besides, NATO Europe nations are his BEST energy customers. A reasonable ‘sphere of influence’ – a buffer zone- is appropriate from his POV. America has one. China will buy one. Putin’s decade of disciplined brilliance is keeping Russia, essentially a regional power with the demise of the Soviet Union, in the superpower game by playing his a pair of deuces over and over.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  21. We should be dropping a few divisions into Germany, if not Poland. We used to practice that a lot.

    Let’s raise your taxes to pay for it, too. 😉

    And when do the Ukraine Defense Fund Bonds go on sale, Joe? 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  22. OT- A fully vaccinated, near 96 year old Queen Elizabeth II has tested positive for Covid.

    She is not amused.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  23. I was wondering whether the U.S. had access to actually orders given to Russian troops. Apparently it does. Putin can’t change the codes – if he does, it’s more delay.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  24. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Tannenberg

    The Battle of Tannenberg, also known as the Second Battle of Tannenberg, was fought between Russia and Germany between 26 and 30 August 1914, the first month of World War I. The battle resulted in the almost complete destruction of the Russian Second Army and the suicide of its commanding general, Alexander Samsonov….

    The battle is… also notable for the failure of the Russians to encode their radio messages, broadcasting their daily marching orders in the clear, which allowed the Germans to make their movements with the confidence they would not be flanked.

    Now, Putin knows he might as well be broadcasting his orders in the clear.

    This will postpone the war at least until…Friday.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  25. “Is Putin sane?” New York magazine asks the question that the New York Times had hinted about, earlier:

    The New York Times has broached the awkward question that has been on the minds of anyone who has paid even passing attention to Vladimir Putin recently: Has he lost his marbles? The Times reports that people have noticed that Putin “has fundamentally changed amid the pandemic, a shift that may have left him more paranoid, more aggrieved, and more reckless.” Two years since the onset of COVID, the Russian leader remains severely isolated, interacting with cabinet officials largely via video and keeping trips abroad to a minimum. When he does have to meet people face-to-face in Moscow, whether it’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov or French president Emmanuel Macron, they must first pass through a “disinfection tunnel” and then sit at a social distance of Olympian proportions, at tables so long that they have become a physical manifestation of Putin’s remoteness from the rest of the world.

    That isolation would help explain his increasing incompetence.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  26. I wish someone would ban “…and Putin smiled”. It was pointless and annoying in 2018.

    Putin has been invading eastern Ukraine since 2014, and Zelensky has been without dominion over the Crimean region going on eight years. Whether Putin tries to violently take more territory or not, the Russian dictator’s belligerence is a problem, and it’s been that way for years.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  27. The New York Times has broached the awkward question that has been on the minds of anyone who has paid even passing attention to Vladimir Putin recently: Has he lost his marbles?

    He did on Christmas Day, 1991. By this Christmas, he’ll have gathered a few more back under the tree.

    … and Putin smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  28. Gonna be epic when Germany changes its mind and decides that rather than pull out of the Nord Steam 2 deal with Russia, they will pursue a separate diplomatic track to convince Putin to stand down and withdraw his troops. Which Putin will gladly do after he has made his point at our expense.

    B-b-b-but Joe boasted, “The Free World is united!” Which is why Germany sent the Ukranians a pallet of… helmets. 😉 Some how, given their ‘history,’ just don’t see a reunited Germany stormtrooping into a land battle in Europe given the final score of the games in 1918 and 1945– even if doormat Ukraine is a perirenal pushover from invaders to the East and West:

    The Nazi occupation of Soviet Ukraine

    ‘The surprise German invasion of the U.S.S.R. began on June 22, 1941. The Soviets, during their hasty retreat, shot their political prisoners and, whenever possible, evacuated personnel, dismantled and removed industrial plants, and conducted a scorched-earth policy—blowing up buildings and installations, destroying crops and food reserves, and flooding mines. Almost four million people were evacuated east of the Urals for the duration of the war. The Germans moved swiftly, however, and by the end of November virtually all of Ukraine was under their control.’- source, http://www.beentheredonethat.doormatsofhistory.wheatgerm.rolledoveroatsbytanktreads.gov

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  29. If Putin decides to soften up Ukrainians with airstrikes before the ground invasion, recall how he did it in Syria, where his airstrikes killed 24k civilians.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  30. I wish someone would ban “…and Putin smiled”. It was pointless and annoying in 2018.

    A guy consistently grinning winning pots with a pair of deuces should be annoying to ‘folks’ who plays poker with a deck full of jokers. But pointless? Check the scoreboard.

    BTW, Joe’s shuttered 2 embassies in six months. He’ll get the hat trick by Christmas; when Taiwan makes three.

    … and Putin smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  31. Did the German’s send the Ukranians DShK 12.7 perforated WWII helmets?

    steveg (e81d76)

  32. If Putin decides to soften up Ukrainians with airstrikes before the ground invasion, recall how he did it in Syria, where his airstrikes killed 24k civilians.

    Meanwhile, in Wilmington:

    If Biden decides to soften up his Cheerios with skim milk before going to bunker ground, recall how he did in Buckingham Palace, where his “airstrikes” killed a royal rapport w/Camilla.

    FIFY.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  33. And they say Germans don’t have a sense of humor

    steveg (e81d76)

  34. Ol’Bill quilled it: ‘All the world’s is a stage…’

    Which makes Ukraine: Wally Cox.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  35. Putin has been invading eastern Ukraine since 2014, and Zelensky has been without dominion over the Crimean region going on eight years. Whether Putin tries to violently take more territory or not, the Russian dictator’s belligerence is a problem, and it’s been that way for years.

    And this is not his endgame, either. Once he has Ukraine, having proven that NATO will do almost anything to avoid a general war in Europe, he will move on the Baltic States. After all, who wants to go to war over Latvia? Then Poland as NATO crumbles in finger-pointing and the blame game. They, to show that he’s better than Stalin, Germany and the West (all save France, attempt no invading there).

    Seems to me that the only real choice is where we fight. I could probably convince both Poland and Germany that it should be in Ukraine.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  36. WAPO headline: “Ukraine Crisis Could Boost Biden’s Image.”

    Incompetence did wonders for Custer’s image, too.

    … and Sitting Bull smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  37. @35. Nah. Putin’s Russia will never assault a NATO member w/Article 5 in place. NATO Europe nations are his BEST energy customers. Ukraine will put up the usual, ‘routine’ token resistance- with other people’s weapons, of course- then go ‘French.’ Unless they’re stupid enough to destroy their own homes, businesses and infrastructure. They still have to live there once the smoke clears, the ground softens and the fields of wheat grow in the summer sun.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  38. Won’t be surprised if the end game is a split-the-difference scenario a la Cold War Germany: an East Ukraine, a West Ukraine… the pipelines stay open, European lights stay on; everybody cashes in on the spike in gold and oil prices; the East/West MICs make millions replacing used munition caches– and mapmakers get fresh work. ‘Limited incursion’ to spin for a Joe face save; cheap real estate deal for Vlad…. Zelinsky moves to a smaller stage; NATO claims saber rattling works.

    … and everybody w/t right investment portfolios smiles.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  39. I blame Mike Pence. He has the authority to decertify the invasion and stop the steal of Ukraine. Why doesn’t he do it?

    And Putin smiled, as he gathered DCSCA up in his brawny arms and held him tenderly against his shirtless chest and tenderly murmured, “DCSCA, you are the paprika in my borscht, the dodz in my vidanye, the O in my blast. Come with me to the Caspian!”

    nk (1d9030)

  40. @39. Shorter. Gold is at $1900/oz… and climbing.

    Thanks, Vlad! 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  41. Just remember that Putin is over thirty and be sure to get the free shipping, DCSCA.

    nk (1d9030)

  42. @39. Think of him as the New England Patriots. You don’t have to like’em- even when they deceive
    and deflate your expectations to a victory= but you have to respect their capacity to win.

    … and Putin smiled. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  43. WAPO headline: “Ukraine Crisis Could Boost Biden’s Image.”

    And this is why we fail.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  44. $1900/oz… and climbing.

    It had reached that in 2011. It was up to $2,074 in 2020.

    nk (1d9030)

  45. Ukraine will put up the usual, ‘routine’ token resistance- with other people’s weapons, of course

    Sure. As they lie dying from being pulverized the Russian version of the AC-130, they’ll smile, knowing that the Ukraine didn’t have to pay for their gun.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  46. Cossacks are famous for routine token resistance, I heard.

    nk (1d9030)

  47. @45/@46. If Ukranians are stupid enough to blow up their own homes, businesses and infrastructure using other people’s weapons– until they run out- so be it. Invest in Kellogg’s: PopTarts are a standard issue in food parcel airdrops.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  48. Putin has been invading eastern Ukraine since 2014, and Zelensky has been without dominion over the Crimean region going on eight years

    Zelenskyy – they are now spelling it that way in the Latin alphabet – has only been president since 2019.

    People associated with him were slandered to Trump via Giuliani, in turn via people who had maneuvered themselves close to Giuliani and have been been indicted for making campaign contributions with other people’s money (Ukrainians who probably got the money from Russian intelligence)

    They had supposedly helped Hillary in 2016 and were also supposedly generally corrupt. (Putin had more than one angle to move Trump. He wasn’t just appealing to Trump’s personal feelings.)

    It wasn’t very important for those named to have government jobs and Zelensky fired them or didn’t hire them. Before that, or around that time, Donald Trump fired the U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine because she was supposedly working with these bad people. Secretary of State Nike Pompeo tried to protect her, but in the end he couldn’t.

    Later, Trump placed a hold on all aid to Ukraine and gave no reason even to his national security team. When Donald Trump’s withholding of aid to Ukraine became public, he dropped it.

    The president before Zelensky was Petro Poroshenko. Joe Biden claimed falsely, in two different versions one in an interview with the Atlantic in 2016 and the other in a speech Q&A session before the Council on Foreign Relations on January 23, 2018, that he had forced the government of Ukraine to fire the prosecutor, Viktor Shokin. At some point Donald Trump listened or viewed Biden’s speech to the CFR, or part of it, but he somehow didn’t notice that, while Joe Biden indeed took credit (falsely!) for firing the prosecutor all by himself, he never said he did it to protect his son! Giuliani noticed that, but not Trump.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  49. Senator Ted Cruz claimed today that the reason Putin never invaded the main part of Ukraine till now is that he had no alternative way to ship natural gas to the European Union, but Biden lifted the prohibition on Nordstrum 2.

    Biden has since said (recently) that that pipeline is not going to open. (even if there’s not right now any sanction preventing it)

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  50. #36 Many people haven’t people haven’t heard of the Rally ’round the flag effect.

    The rally ’round the flag’ effect (or syndrome) is a concept used in political science and international relations to explain increased short-run popular support of a country’s government or political leaders during periods of international crisis or war.

    That’s true of failures as well as successes, for example, after John Kennedy’s Bay of Pigs blunder, his popularity went up.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  51. DCSCA @30

    , Joe’s shuttered 2 embassies in six months. He’ll get the hat trick by Christmas; when Taiwan makes three.

    There is no U.S. Embassy in Taiwan.

    That’s part of the deal that Jimmy Carter struck with the People’s Republic of China, effective January 1, 1979.

    There’s an unofficial U.S. interests section staffed by people who, for the duration of their appointment, are not U.S. government employees.I think they are on leave.

    This is the way Wikipedia puts it:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Institute_in_Taiwan

    The AIT was officially created as a U.S. government-sponsored non-profit, private corporation established under the auspices of the U.S. government to serve its interests in Taiwan. Primarily staffed by employees of the United States Department of State and local workers, the AIT provides consular services normally offered by normal United States diplomatic missions, with the Great Seal of the State Department hung at AIT’s main office in Taipei….It receives full protection from the United States Marine Corps as do all US Embassies.

    Jimmy Carter switched the deal that Richard Nixon reached with Mainland China in 1972, and tore up the defense treaty.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  52. @51. We know what it is there, Sammy:

    The US Embassy in Taiwan is a bilateral mission in Taipei and promotes US interests in Taiwan. The embassy of the United States also plays an important role in development, cultural affairs and contacts with the local press of Taiwan. The US Embassy in Taipei is headed by REPRESENTATIVE OFFICE of the United States to Taiwan.

    Address:

    Representative Office of the United States in Taipei, No. 7, Lane 134, Hsin Yi Road, Section 3, Taipei 106, Taiwan

    Telephone:

    (+886) 2 2709-2000

    Fax:

    (+886) 2 2162-2251

    E-mail:

    Website:

    http://www.ait.org.tw

    Ambassador:

    REPRESENTATIVE OFFICE

    Office Hours:

    Embassy Appointments

    Many embassies in Taiwan require an appointment before you visit. On the official website of the US embassy in Taipei you will find information on opening hours and how to book appointments.

    Opening hours

    Please note that embassy opening hours can vary. Always contact the embassy before a visit.

    Visa for the United States

    source, – https://www.123embassy.com/Embassy/26391/United-States-in-Taipei

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  53. Breaking- CNN reports “Biden Agrees In Principle To Summit With Putin”

    WTF; ROFLMAOPIP! Vlad’s agenda?

    1. Visit Grandpa. 2. Steal pudding.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  54. Biden and Putin agree in principle to Ukraine summit- French presidency

    Feb 21 (Reuters) – U.S. President Joe Biden and Russia’s Vladimir Putin have agreed in principle to hold a summit on the Ukraine crisis, the office of French President Emmanuel Macron said on Monday.

    “The substance will have to be prepared by (U.S.) Secretary Blinken and (Russian Foreign) Minister Lavrov during their meeting on Thursday 24 February,” the Elysee palace said. “It can only be held at the condition that Russia does not invade Ukraine.” Macron will help prepare the contents of the discussions, the statement added. –

    source, https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/biden-putin-accept-principle-summit-ukraine-french-presidency-2022-02-21/

    Mon Dieu. These guys are determinned to run up oil and precious metal prices for their portfolios. France as “Le Middleman” no less— where rifles bounce as high as frogs can jump.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  55. Zelensky should have a seat at the table with Biden and Putin. It is his country after all.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  56. Paul,

    That would be interesting..

    EPWJ (0fbe92)

  57. A Russian soldier gets drunk and begins marching around the Kremlin, shouting, “Putin is a madman, Putin is a madman!”

    Naturally he is arrested, given a quick trial, and sentenced to fifteen years in solitary.

    Why fifteen years? Five years for insulting Russia’s leader, ten years for revealing a state secret.

    (More seriously, I wonder just how bad the morale is in the Russian army. News critters have been suggesting that we are reading the Russian codes, but it is also possible that individual Russian soldiers, like many others in Russia, don’t trust Putin, don’t want to attack their neighbors, and are leaking to the Ukrainians (and us).)

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  58. @56. Zelensky should have a seat at the table with Biden and Putin. It is his country after all.

    Zelensky should have a seat at the table with Putin. Period.

    It is his country after all.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  59. DCSCA is just waiting for America to get its “azz kicked.”

    Rip Murdock (da0cad)

  60. Zelensky should have a seat at the table with Putin.

    Zelensky offered and Putin refused.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  61. @steve@8 At this time of year the Germans are skiing in bikinis on the Zugspitze. Remember how I said in another thread that I’d been in the windstorms of 1990 and we were without power for 2 days? Yeah, it wasn’t terrible.

    Nic (896fdf)

  62. @61. Rip??? ROFLMAOPIP. You’re already getting your butt kicked– and pocket picked: bought any Ukraine Relief War Bonds from Uncle Sam today to pay for these showboating saber-rattling European troop deployments? Or did you miss the Kabul-won’t-be-Saigon episode of The Joe Show?

    If Squinty McStumblebum is going to stick his nose into somebody else’s business and take a meeting w/dear ol’Vlad ‘behind the gymnasium’ for a corn-popping, he best be wearing a cup for the Joementous ball-kicking he’ll be getting as he blinks eyeball to eyeball and Vlad swipes his pudding.

    Acknowledge a winner. You’re quite behind the curve; ‘We the People’ have been getting our azzes kicked since the Gulf of Tonkin lies, the Vietnam lies, the Pentagon Papers lies, the Watergate lies, the Iran hostage crisis debacle; the Iran Contra lies; the multi-billion dollar 9/11 failure, the faux WMD and multi-billion dollar mideast wars and the $6 trillion blown on the Afghanisatan ‘Kabul Won’t Be Saigon Except It Was Follies. Why do you think :Lady Liberty can’t sit down: her copper plated butt hurts too much.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  63. DCSCA,

    There is evidence that the Biden strategy is working:

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/behind-chinas-warning-against-a-russian-invasion-is-a-desire-to-protect-ties-with-the-u-s-11645376565?mod=djemalertNEWS

    You like a narrative that Biden is stupid, evil and senile, all at once. That might be affecting your judgment. What’s happening in the Ukraine crisis is Biden trying a novel strategy that might be just the thing to while that smile off Putin’s face. (It also runs the risk of blowing up US assets, so there are reasons not to like it) Even if it flops, it’s a calculated risk beyond the capacity of the stupid or senile.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  64. 59. Jim Miller (406a93) — 2/20/2022 @ 7:18 pm

    Five years for insulting Russia’s leader, ten years for revealing a state secret.

    That’s an old joke, dating back (in a somewhat different version) to the time of Khrushchev.

    Even earlier.

    https://nationalpost.com/news/the-cia-has-declassified-a-bunch-of-jokes-here-are-the-best-ones

    A man was jailed 15 years for calling Joseph Stalin a fathead. One year for sedition, 14 years for revealing a state secret.

    The Khrushchev one had a different adjective for Khrushchev.

    (More seriously, I wonder just how bad the morale is in the Russian army. News critters have been suggesting that we are reading the Russian codes, but it is also possible that individual Russian soldiers, like many others in Russia, don’t trust Putin, don’t want to attack their neighbors, and are leaking to the Ukrainians (and us).)

    An ordinary soldier would ave difficulty communicating with someone outside. High level officers more. There cold be spies, but the most valuable information someone in or close to the military or someone in Moscow could give would be details about their coding system, so both could be true.

    Putin may suspect spying, and he may have targeted the wrong person. The number two man at the U.S. Embassy in Moscow was very recently expelled or ordered to leave and the U,S. says there’s no reason for it. But the reason could be Putin was told (possibly by a self-aggrandizing source) that he was probably in charge of getting information.,

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  65. Assumes Biden has anything to do with it and doesn’t just sit there wondering if today is ice cream cone day

    steveg (e81d76)

  66. I had it backwards earlier. The invasion alert was to the the 5 star Kyiv hotel buffet line. There had been multiple credible reports that the Vindman twins were supposedly seen conducting mobilization exercises by practicing un-fatassing themselves from a taxi. Didn’t happen. Apologies for getting caught in the Biden/Putin “War Fog” distraction machine.
    The story was too good to be true, but it seemed so plausible

    steveg (e81d76)

  67. Sammy – The first version of that joke that I saw called Khrushchev a “fool”.

    In mass armies, there are almost always a few deserters, usually privates. Often, they provide valuable information, especially if they come from different parts of a front.

    Then there was this curious story:

    Fifteen Russian generals prayed for peace last week at the Jewish cemetery in Lyubavichi, a Russian town credited as being the birthplace of the Chabad movement.

    The military men, who visited the site on the 33rd anniversary of the Russian withdrawal from Afghanistan, told Jewish worshipers in the Smolensk Oblast village that they heard prayers are answered at the burial sites of revered tzadikim.

    Note: It seems more likely they are “military men”, rather than all of them being generals.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  68. steveg – If you like such stories, here’s a better one for you. The reason that Putin moved troops there, away from Moscow, is that he fears a military coup.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  69. I thought the troop movement was to protect the bottom line of the Hotel buffett.

    On a serious note, here is a Rand lessons learned report from the Crimean adventurism.

    https://www.rand.org/content/dam/rand/pubs/research_reports/RR1400/RR1498/RAND_RR1498.pdf

    This study really challenged my thinking on Russia and the current kerfuffle. in a nutshell, before reading the report I thought there was a very good chance Putin would just take what he wanted and laugh. He still may, but its rather more likely to have been a probe based on “Russian Lessons Learned”.
    The section on the Donbas region is particularly interesting. The Rand report noted how seperatists in the Donbas region were disappointed Russia had not annexed them as well. The Rand report mentioned two things that stood out to me. One if Russia takes Donbas, it takes on Donbas financially… which leads to the second reason. Donbas remains destabilized and Ukraine still has to pay for it, try to control and administrate a region where Russia maintains near complete influence over the population.

    steveg (e81d76)

  70. @65. There is evidence that the Biden strategy is working

    Except it’s not…

    “Reality. What a concept!” – Robin Williams

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  71. On a Putin coup,
    No doubt someone dreams of it. No doubt Putin is well aware that he always has to assume there is a plot.
    It won’t happen now. Might happen if Putin actually did try to take Ukraine and failed, or if the Russian death toll was high, or also if Russian war technology took a black eye etc.

    The Rand report convinced me to think about this as a possible destabilization play over Eastern Ukraine. Stir the pot.

    steveg (e81d76)

  72. @65. What’s happening in the Ukraine crisis is Biden trying a novel strategy that might be just the thing to while that smile off Putin’s face.

    What’s “happening” is you’re witnessing the results of rare and historic Confluence of Incompetence; a scenario accelerated by “conservatives” who bailed on their own party nominee and backed this third string bum because they didn’t like the persona of their own party’s nominee. Joe’s deck full of jokers doesn’t beat Vlad’s pair of deuces.

    … and Putin smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  73. Fifteen Russian generals prayed for peace last week at the Jewish cemetery in Lyubavichi, a Russian town credited as being the birthplace of the Chabad movement.

    The Lubavitch movement is somewhat cose to Putin. He favors them as the main Jewish religious authorities in Russia, r tries to. If this w something more genuine it would have been at some other site, or something. It fits in with Jewish = Lubavicher Chassidim. Putin has favored religious figures for Christians too.

    This would have been done with Putin’s support. His propaganda, after all, is that it is Ukraine which wants war.

    Never mind that this doesn’t quite fit in with everything else

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  74. DCSCA,

    Ok. My link has China explicitly stating Russia should stay out of the Ukraine. When the original thinking was that China and Russia were going to be allies on this. Looks like a setback to Putin that might be the result of the constant Euro-American focus on that.

    What’s your view of this development?

    Appalled (1a17de)

  75. Breaking: Putin announces recognition of separatist regions in Ukraine as independent states.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  76. @76. Head fake. Putin is announcing his move right now– and the rationale he’s painting is a blueprint for the liberation of Taiwan to come.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  77. @76. Ukraine is toast, Appalled.

    Best focus on Taiwan, as U.S. interests there are much more direct.

    And Joe’s not up to it.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  78. In other news: United States says that Russia has compiled a list of people in Ukraine to kill or arrest. Not just people holding government positions, but dissidents in exile from either Russia or Belarus, anti-corruption activists, journalists, religious figures, and LGTBQ people. This hasn’t been done since the days of Stalin. It’s more like Hungary 1945.

    They are notifying the United Nations. Wwe get speeches at the United Nations and communications even to such a perverse institution as the Human Rights Council.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/20/world/europe/us-russia-ukraine-kill-list.html

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  79. DCSCA (f4c5e5) — 2/21/2022 @ 11:02 am

    Best focus on Taiwan, as U.S. interests there are much more direct.

    I know you can argue there’s little trade, and in 1987, the United States would have been overjoyed at Brest being the western boundary of dictatorship, and never wold have dreamed at the boundary between freedom and autocracy being as far east as Kharkov, but there’s the status quo.

    There;s precedent, and the fact that Ukraine is a friendly country.

    .

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  80. Appalled (1a17de) — 2/21/2022 @ 10:54 am

    My link has China explicitly stating Russia should stay out of the Ukraine. When the original thinking was that China and Russia were going to be allies on this. Looks like a setback to Putin that might be the result of the constant Euro-American focus on that.

    No, it could be a cover. Putin may have decided that he can’t do that in the immediate future because the codes are broken, and for other reasons, so now China takes a stand against it.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  81. What link?

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  82. WE weren’t reading the secret communications of the Taliban. Except a little between them and Afghan outposts, but the full picture didn’t make its way up the chain of command.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  83. #75 Thanks, Sammy, for that explanation.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  84. Biden has since said (recently) that that pipeline is not going to open. (even if there’s not right now any sanction preventing it)

    An undersea pipeline? God only knows what accidents could happen.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  85. Putin, in a fiery speech to Russians, says he will recognize the separatists in Ukraine.
    ……..
    Mr. Putin gave a lengthy televised address in which he accused Ukraine of being a “puppet” of the United States and said its citizens were being brutalized by their government.

    “As for those who captured and are holding on to power in Kyiv, we demand that they immediately cease military action,” Mr. Putin said. “If not, the complete responsibility for the possibility of a continuation of bloodshed will be fully and wholly on the conscience of the regime ruling the territory of Ukraine.”

    Mr. Putin made the case that Ukraine is by history and makeup an integral part of Russia. “Colleagues, comrades, close ones, relatives, those who are tied up with us in family and blood ties,” he said.

    Mr. Putin also laid out a long history of grievances since the fall of the Soviet Union and the loss of the states that once made it up.

    “We gave these republics the right to leave the union without any terms and conditions,” he said. “This is just madness.”
    ……….
    His phone calls with the German and French leaders came after an extraordinary session of the Russian Security Council at which Mr. Putin accused the United States and its allies of using Ukraine “as an instrument of confrontation” with Russia. He said it posed “a serious, very big threat to us.”
    ………..
    I don’t think Biden will be meeting with Putin any time soon. It would reek of desperation. The time for talk is over.

    Rip Murdock (da0cad)

  86. An undersea pipeline? God only knows what accidents could happen.

    Tanker trafficking. Rotterdam remains a refining hub; was back in the day. But any LPG and such will be tankered over from the states– so expect U.S. energy prices to spike. Biden’s going to have to tell his left flank to go to hell and loosen U.S. energy exploration restrictions a la Trump. U.S. consumers aren’t going to endure high prices to keep NATO Europe cozy- especially as Vlad will keep them supplied and satisfied. Italy has already barked about any ‘sanctions’ on Russian energy. Especially when the quality of life in Dusseldorf is better than in Detroit.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  87. I don’t think Biden will be meeting with Putin any time soon.

    Hell, he is likely still asleep.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  88. China’s Ukraine Crisis
    What Xi Gains—and Loses—From Backing Putin

    https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/china/2022-02-21/chinas-ukraine-crisis

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  89. CHINA’s leader Xi Jinping is watching the West’s reaction to the Ukraine crisis “with pleasure,” a former UK Ambassador to Russia has warned.

    https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/1569553/China-latest-Xi-Jinping-Taiwan-latest-Russia-invasion-Ukraine-news-world-war-3-vn

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  90. What do Russians think of Putin’s war against Ukraine? Many, perhaps most, are against it.

    For all the difficulties of measuring public opinion in an authoritarian state — where all television networks are controlled by the government and where many people are understandably hesitant to share their political views with pollsters or other strangers — the available surveys point to the strong unpopularity of a military attack on Ukraine among Russian citizens at large. Most Russians neither favor sending troops to Ukraine nor buy into the Kremlin’s narrative of treating the West as an enemy.

    Most Russians want peace, and better relations with the West. Putin apologists here in the West might be able to learn something from the Russian people — if the apologists would open their minds.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  91. @92. In January 2022, about 70 percent of Russians approved of activities of Russian President Vladimir Putin.

    https://www.statista.com/statistics/896181/putin-approval-rating-russia/

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  92. Putin apologists here in the West might be able to learn something from the Russian people — if the apologists would open their minds.

    Literally been there. Done that. Russians are a very proud people.

    Open your mind: respect that.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  93. I’d like to commend Kamala Harris on a job well done. California leads the way on some many things, truly amazing talent pool here

    steveg (e81d76)

  94. #92
    War in Ukraine may be unpopular but Putin’s approval ratings are typically around 60 to65% but jumped to 85% on annexation of Crimea

    https://www.levada.ru/en/ratings/

    steveg (e81d76)

  95. He found his thrill; on Blueberry Hill…

    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warsaw_Pact_invasion_of_Czechoslovakia

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  96. https://2001-2009.state.gov/r/pa/ho/time/ea/107190.htm

    ‘Soviet leaders were concerned over these recent developments in Czechoslovakia. Recalling the 1956 uprising in Hungary, leaders in Moscow worried that if Czechoslovakia carried reforms too far, other satellite states in Eastern Europe might follow, leading to a widespread rebellion against Moscow’s leadership of the Eastern Bloc. There was also a danger that the Soviet Republics in the East, such as the Ukraine, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia might make their own demands for more liberal policies. After much debate, the Communist Party leadership in Moscow decided to intervene to establish a more conservative and pro-Soviet government in Prague.

    The Warsaw Pact invasion of August 20-21 caught Czechoslovakia and much of the Western world by surprise. In anticipation of the invasion, the Soviet Union had moved troops from the Soviet Union, along with limited numbers of troops from Hungary, Poland, East Germany and Bulgaria into place by announcing Warsaw Pact military exercises. When these forces did invade, they swiftly took control of Prague, other major cities, and communication and transportation links. Given the escalating U.S. involvement in the conflict in Vietnam as well as past U.S. pronouncements on non-intervention in the East Bloc, the Soviets guessed correctly that the United States would condemn the invasion but refrain from intervening. Although the Soviet crackdown on Czechoslovakia was swift and successful, small-scale resistance continued throughout early 1969 while the Soviets struggled to install a stable government. Finally, in April of 1969, the Soviets forced Dubcek from power in favor of a more conservative administrator. In the years that followed, the new leadership reestablished government censorship and controls preventing freedom of movement, but it also improved economic conditions, eliminating one of the sources for revolutionary fervor. Czechoslovakia once again became a cooperative member of the Warsaw Pact.

    The Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia was significant in the sense that it delayed the splintering of Eastern European Communism and was concluded without provoking any direct intervention from the West. Repeated efforts in the UN Security Council to pass a resolution condemning the attacks met with opposition from the Soviet Union, and the effort finally died away. The invasion did, however, temporarily derail progress toward detente between the Soviet Union and the United States. The NATO allies valued the idea of a lessening of tensions, and as a result they were determined not to intervene. Still, the invasion forced U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson to cancel a summit meeting with Soviet leader Leonid Brezhnev.’

    History rhymes.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  97. #96 steveg – Here’s why:

    Surveys well before Russia took over Crimea showed that most Russians thought Crimea was actually Russian territory — but that’s not how Russians see the rest of Ukraine. People have consistently opposed annexing Ukraine’s Donbas region, for example.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  98. From the same link as in #100:

    Meanwhile, Russians (like other publics) are less focused on foreign policy than domestic policy. Even as the conflict along Ukraine’s border escalated in late 2021, fewer than 5 percent of Russians nationwide ranked any foreign policy issue — including Russia’s position in the world, relations with the West or the situation in Ukraine — among the top three issues facing Russia.

    Putin’s failures as a Russian leader make those priorities all too understandable, and all too obvious to Russians. They want their government to fight against COVID more effectively, cut down on corruption, and improve the economy, not engage in foreign adventures.

    Those who hate the Russian people, or at the very least don’t care what is happening to them, will prefer the latter, if it fits into their “thinking”, otherwise.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  99. At this point, I am curious about DCSCA’s thoughts about the best thing to do in Ukraine, should the war really happen.

    My understanding about Biden’s position is that he will not commit US troops in any way, but he will in concert with the EU, unleash a swarm of sanctions that will push Russia back to the USSR days, when it comes to commerce with the West. (Well, I’m hping for a swarm. It may not be that).

    Is this the wrong approach, DCSCA? Should the US do more? Or should the US do nothing? Please note that I will regard complaints of Biden’s overall inadequacy as dodging the issue.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  100. Putin’s speech today clearly says that he believes differently. Perhaps he sees that his popularity at 69% even as 49% don’t believe Russia is heading in the right direction (this was before today’s news)

    Psaki let us know who has put the false teeth in the sanctions.

    “President Biden will soon issue an Executive Order that will prohibit new investment, trade, and financing by U.S. persons to, from, or in the so-called DNR and LNR regions of Ukraine,” Psaki continued. “This E.O. will also provide authority to impose sanctions on any person determined to operate in those areas of Ukraine.”

    Since next to zero Americans are going to invest in LNR and DNR this is capitulative and needs to be followed with sanctions on Russia. Sanction on LNR and DNR… as an opener has probably got Putin in a laughing fit.

    Next week the Iranian opening gambit should be to announce that they plan to annex Israel and see if the US sanctions Israel

    steveg (e81d76)

  101. 50 years ago today: Nixon Goes To China

    The week-long visit began from February 21 through 28, 1972. The Big Dick’s play was to drive a wedge between the PRC and the CCCP and open up China. Half a century later, the wedge is gone anf China is the second largest economy in the world– and growing.

    Thanks… Dick.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1972_visit_by_Richard_Nixon_to_China#Aftermath

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  102. Breaking- The liberation of Ukraine has begun: Putin has ordered peacekeepers in.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  103. Putin orders Russian peacekeepers to eastern Ukraine’s two breakaway regions

    MOSCOW (Reuters) – President Vladimir Putin ordered his defence ministry to despatch Russian peacekeepers to eastern Ukraine’s two breakaway regions, according to a decree published early on Tuesday after he said Moscow would recognize their independence.

    Putin earlier signed decrees to recognize the two breakaway regions — the self-proclaimed Donetsk People’s Republic and the Lugansk People’s Republic — as independent statelets defying Western warnings that such a step would be illegal and kill off long-running peace negotiations.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  104. I think acknowledging Biden/Harris’s lack of chops is part of understanding where we are.
    Russia just “annexed” something without taking a shot.
    I don’t know if Biden can convince Germany and the pragmatists in the EU not to buy fuel from Russia over LNR and DNR. Fuel is about all Russia has for sale and sanctions that disrupt the flow in winter won’t be popular in the EU.

    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/dec/07/us-russia-sanctions-joe-biden-vladimir-putin

    Article contains a number of sanctions on the table for discussion with Putin back on on Dec 7 2021 “I think Biden will lay out in considerable detail what sanctions the US will undertake,” said Anders Åslund, adjunct professor at the center for Eurasian, Russian and east European studies at Georgetown University”

    Bond Market
    “In April, the US issued a ban on US financial institutions buying new issues of Russian government bonds, which had negligible effect.” Goes on to sound optimistic about sanctioning the secondary market

    Nordstream 2
    My opinion is that this will be toothless (if done at all). Toothless and immediately violated by the EU itself.

    Sanctions or Russian Corporations and Banks
    Most of this would be aimed at the Russian oil industry and I doubt the EU will put their best efforts into this one.

    Sanctions on Oligarchs and families.
    Article notes US tried this before and pissed off Ireland

    SWIFT
    The nuclear weapon in the financial arsenal.
    Won’t be done over LNR, DNR. Or whatever else Putin does as long as he takes small bites

    steveg (e81d76)

  105. @102. See #99.

    What did LBJ do in 1968?

    Nothing.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  106. I think Biden has been smart to telegraph that he knows Putin would do this, because it was always certain that Putin would create a phony pretext to invade. Calling it ahead of time makes the pretexts look stupider and more obvious.

    Patterico (d3d5c1)

  107. @102. Postscript: Please note that I will regard complaints of Biden’s overall inadequacy as dodging the issue.

    That IS the issue. And your choice is to avoid it.

    Coddling incompetence.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  108. I’m guessing these peacekeepers won’t be wearing blue helmets.
    I read an interview of a Canadian Army Capt. about his time in Lebanon.
    The Capt. would move up to his outpost with his UN group and Hezbollah would ride their bumper all the way to the overlook position and upon arrival start shooting missiles from over the back wall of their post.

    steveg (e81d76)

  109. @109. His people have been reactive from [Red] square one. Vlad’s been planning this for a decade. The discipline is admirable; a regional power playing the superpower game.

    China is watching. Look to Taiwan. That’s where U.S. interests truly are in play. My neighbor is concerned he will be deployed again- and he just got back from a 6 month deployment ‘war gaming’ in Palau.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  110. Even when Biden was in full control of his faculties he wasn’t smart enough to do this.
    Maybe it was Blynken and Austin.

    I agree that calling it ahead of time, repetitively was the right call, but what does it say that Putin heard all that, knows all that, is aware of the potential sanctions that were put on the table 2.5 months ago and he left that meeting with Biden back in December and did it anyway

    steveg (e81d76)

  111. OK, I think DCSCA is a vote for doing nothing. No additional sanctions, no investment of political capital to make Putin more a pariah. Just nothing.

    That’s a defensible position, by the way. Maybe not as fun to assert as Biden senility, I guess. But the question on whether anyone here should suffer one little bit for the Ukraine isn’t a bad debate topic.

    And, yes, Biden’s alleged incapacity (he’s so stupid that you can’t trust him with that thing you’d suupport anyone else doing) is mostly a garbage line of patter. I remember it a lot from Democrat hawks in 2003 and 2004.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  112. I agree that calling it ahead of time, repetitively was the right call, but what does it say that Putin heard all that, knows all that, is aware of the potential sanctions that were put on the table 2.5 months ago and he left that meeting with Biden back in December and did it anyway

    You more less answer your own question. W/Article 5 in place, he will never assault a NATO Europe member; they’re his BEST energy customers. But bordering unaffiliated regions; beware. You may not like the SOB but you have to acknowledge if not admire his dedicated and discipline strategy. He’s been focused on this for a decade, told the world so several times and followed through. And given the lousy Afghan withdrawal, he took advantage of the Confluence of Incompetence. A real estate deal like this, literally on the border of Mother Russia, won’t come around for him again in his lifetime.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  113. @114. That’s not what I posted. LBJ did nothing. I said look to Taiwan.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  114. I’m so glad Biden is flexing his massive foreign policy chops. Seems to be working. Much better than Trump, when Putin annexed Crimea. Oh, my bad. That happened under Obama’s watch…

    Hoi Polloi (998b37)

  115. Biden’s alleged incapacity (he’s so stupid that you can’t trust him with that thing you’d suupport anyone else doing) is mostly a garbage line of patter.

    Except it’s not.

    Ask the Pope. Ask Camilla. Ask yourself the next time you fill up with gas or go to the grocery store— of peruse the news about the porous southern border.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  116. I’m so glad Biden is flexing his massive foreign policy chops

    50 years of government experience! Yes, grounding Vlad for a month and cutting off his allowance; that’s telling him, Joey. Hey Joe, take the keys away for the tanks, too.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  117. @114. Recognize the loser, Joe; acknowledge the winner, Vlad. A multi-year, disciplined, brilliant strategy.

    “Americans love a winner. And will not tolerate a loser.” – George S. Patton

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_S._Patton%27s_speech_to_the_Third_Army

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  118. Appalled – You can understand DCCCP/DCSCA if you picture him (her? it?) wearing an ill-fitting Putin cheerleader uniform. It wants the democracies that oppose Putin to lose; it is as simple as that.

    (That this would make it worse for the Russian people — not to mention the Ukrainian people — is a matter of no consequence for DCCCP/DCSCA.)

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  119. The Russian gas/oil export business with Europe is two sided; the Europeans need the oil and gas; the Russians desperately need the money they receive from selling it, since their economy has been so ravaged by Communism. And the oligarchs that support “Czar” Putin aren’t going to be happy when than money is reduced, or even cut entirely.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  120. I think Biden has been smart to telegraph that he knows Putin would do this, because it was always certain that Putin would create a phony pretext to invade. Calling it ahead of time makes the pretexts look stupider and more obvious.

    I think that’s shaping up to be just about right. But it also unfortunately shows how empty the President’s tough-guy talk has been, given that it’s not all that certain he can back it up. Especially if (as I am fearing) the Euroweenies don’t have the nerve to impose strong sanctions on Russia.

    JVW (ee64e4)

  121. @121. No. ‘It’ wants the democracies that oppose Putin to win for THEMSELVES.

    NATO Germany sent Ukraine… helmets, Jimbo. “Democracy” has nothing to do with any of this, Jim. It’s commerce; business. Start thinking about who profits from all this.

    Have a piece of the Kremlin Wall in my den rescued from behind their war memorial to their 25 million dead. You may not like the SOBs but you have to respect them, Jim. we a;llied w/them; fought the Nazis and today, built andshare rooms on a space station. The U.S. has bailed out Europe 3 times in 100 years; WW1, WW2 and the Cold War. When the quality of life in Dusseldorf or Warsaw is better than it is in Wichita or Detroit, past time for a rethink of the price ofd an American security blanket. Deadbeat NATO Europe can fend for itself. Who knows, they might have to stop spending $ on free healthcare and spend it on… more helmets.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  122. Appalled.
    Garbage patter about Joe… like that from from Obama?
    I give credit to the Biden Administration for calling Putin out in advance, but read the article in the Guardian link.
    Biden met virtually with Putin and it was reported Biden was going to clearly spell out what would happen if Russia “invaded” Ukraine. Putin left the meeting… possibly he might have been laughing, he then met with the Chinese about sanctions, then went ahead and took LNR, DNR 2.5 months later. Putin is calling it a “peacekeeping mission”. That is language that reads to me as if he thinks someone involved is a simpleton. Next Putin will begin shipping “humanitarian aid”.

    If this was an old western where the bad guys wore the black hats, the Biden Administration said over and over Putin is the black hat wearing bad guy. Putin today responded with a giant smirk on his face, because bad guy Putin just put on a white hat and proclaimed himself the good guy.
    That is a move you make when you think the good guys who are calling you bad are stupid and ineffectual

    steveg (e81d76)

  123. it also unfortunately shows how empty the President’s tough-guy talk has been, given that it’s not all that certain he can back it up

    So what else is new; that’s his history. Corn-popped.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  124. I give credit to the Biden Administration for calling Putin out in advance…

    Except it didn’t work. Ukraine had a Putin target on their back since the CCCP dissolved. The Biden team had better be planning hard about Taiwan now. That’s where U.S. interest are.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  125. The boss just retweeted a sobering tweet from Garry Kasparov.

    And so it begins. They will carry the goalposts all the way to Warsaw before standing up to Putin. https://t.co/R83P4CGvlq— Garry Kasparov (@Kasparov63) February 21, 2022

    NEW: In a conference call with reporters on responding to Putin, and what comes next, a senior admin official suggested that Russian troops in Donetsk/Luhansk *alone* may *not* warrant the "swift and severe" sanctions the admin has been previewing.— Ali Rogin (@AliRogin) February 21, 2022

    There were no good roads for the Biden Administration in this whole mess but, as it their wont, they may have ended up committing themselves to the worst possible one.

    JVW (ee64e4)

  126. #124 Sure you do. Which explains the dozens of comments you have posted describing what the Europeans have done already, and the dozens of comments you have put up describing the likely losses to Ukrainians — and Russians — from Putin’s “brilliant” tactics.

    Is your cheerleader uniform beginning to chafe?

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  127. @128. Kasparov plays chess; Putin plays a poker.

    Someone should ask Garry if he is he now or has he ever been a member of the Communist Party.

    Oops. He’s a front for Max Boot’s crowd, too- another ex-pat Rooskie. But nobody is stopping the chessmaster from doffing camo and joining the Ukranian Freedom Fighters. Your move, Garry.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  128. @124. Sure. I DO. Jimbo.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  129. The United States bailed out Russia four times during the 20th century. The allied victory in World War I removed imperial German troops from their occupation of much of Russia. After the war, Herbert Hoover led a rescue mission that probably saved millions of Russian lives. During World War II, American aid made possible much of the Soviet war effort. (Khrushchev once quipped that Spam won the war, so dependent were the Soviets on food supplies from the US.) And, after the Soviet Union collapsed, the US (and other Western nations) supplied significant amounts of aid to the former Soviet republics.

    Czar Putin and his cheerleaders ought to recognize these historical facts. Even if they, like DCCCP/DCSCA and “Czar” Putin, despise democracy.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  130. There were no good roads for the Biden Administration in this whole mess but, as it their wont, they may have ended up committing themselves to the worst possible one.

    Firstly, it’s not really his ‘mess’– until he decided to play world policeman, butt in and soil himself. Now he’s covered w/crap. The U.S. has no interests there– well maybe Huter does. Secondly, had he extricated the U.S. in a competent and organized manner, there’s a chance Vlad wouldn’t have made this move on Joe’s watch. But it was going to be made by Vlad some time. Too bad Kamala wasn’t at the helm- then she could have taken the hit. But Joe’s incompetence certainly has put Taiwan in play. If they aren’t bolstering defenses around that island now, they’d better get at it PDQ. Taiwan’s proximity to China isn’t much different than Ukraine’s to Mother Russia.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  131. ^ extricated from Afghanistan

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  132. @132. We’re talking wars, Jimbo. And BTW, U.S. troops ‘occupied’ portions of Russia proper. They haven’t forgotten that- was remined of it firsthand by Russians when there.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  133. Scratch a Russian and you find a Tartar. The biggest mistake is to consider Russia a Western nation. It is not. They are barbarians, incompatible with Western civilization.

    nk (1d9030)

  134. Scratch a Russian and you find a Tartar. The biggest mistake is to consider Russia a Western nation. It is not. They are barbarians, incompatible with Western civilization.

    But make as great Chicken Kiev.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  135. #136 nk – Tatars would disagree, especially Crimean Tatars, who were a majority of the population in Crimea before Stalin removed them, after he regained control of the territory during World War II.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  136. To Putin, “independence” = vassal province to Putin’s fiefdom.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  137. BTW, Putin sending troops into Donbas is not a “minor incursion”, it’s an invasion, and Biden needs to turn the screws further.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  138. Wikipedia is not a reliable source on things Russian. I suspect that the GRU employs a 24/7 team to monitor and sanitize its Russia-related pages. Unless, of course, you believe that Russia never had the death penalty, and that the Czars employed Cossacks to prevent pogroms against the Jews ….

    nk (1d9030)

  139. Dcsca keeps saying how great and clever Putin has been. He hasn’t. A great and clever leader would’ve gotten Ukraine without needing military threats. He would’ve rebuilt his great empire by creating economic client states.

    And this isn’t the 1800s. We can’t be successful AND isolationist. A lot of the stuff that DCSCA has been decrying here and in a number of other places is stuff that contributes to our world economic power structure. Do we really want an actually independent EU in competition with us? I don’t think so.

    Nic (896fdf)

  140. So, the plan is Czechoslovakia, 1938, immortalized as the Munich Surrender.

    The four powers agreed to the annexation of the Czechoslovak borderland areas named the Sudetenland, where more than three million people, mainly ethnic Germans, lived. Adolf Hitler announced it was his last territorial claim in Europe.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  141. And so it begins. They will carry the goalposts all the way to Warsaw before standing up to Putin. https://t.co/R83P4CGvlq— Garry Kasparov (@Kasparov63) February 21, 2022

    My argument here is “Where do you want to fight? Ukraine, Poland or Germany?”

    Kevin M (38e250)

  142. DCSCA is irrelevant. What the world needs to realize is that pigs who learned to walk on two legs are still pigs. “Four legs real, two legs sham.”

    nk (1d9030)

  143. I expect the Ukrainians to fight. They may lose, but Stalin’s genocide in Ukraine killed 4 million people and they can expect no quarter from Putin for “making him do this.”

    Kevin M (38e250)

  144. BTW, Russia loses a full-scale conventional war in Europe.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  145. And this isn’t the 1800s. We can’t be successful AND isolationist

    And it’s foolish to try. We were knocked on our ass by goat-herders in the hills of Afghanistan in 2001. The pandemic knew no borders. Almost nothing knows borders or distance any more.

    I can talk, real-time with video with 50 people at once, on five continents, for free.

    Nothing is local any more.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  146. I have talked before about the “Trump Lesson” and still believe most of it. But isolationism isn’t a reasonable demand, since it cannot work. Socialism makes more sense.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  147. We were knocked on our ass by goat-herders in the hills of Afghanistan in 2001.

    Wow, what a total traitorous statement. Really crapping on the country and the service of people who you will never measure up to. Maybe its all you are

    EPWJ (0fbe92)

  148. Reposted from the Open Thread (with additions):

    DCSCA Ukraine post generator (can also be used for the next Taiwan crisis, or just about any other topic):

    1. “ Who pays??”

    2. “You bought any Ukraine Freedom War Bonds today from Uncle Sam?”

    3. “Squinty McStumblebum!”

    4. “Germans sent helmets.”

    5. Obscure movie quotes.

    6. Obscure historical quotes.

    7. “…..and Putin smiled”

    8. “ The U.S. deserves a good swift kick in the azz.”

    9. “ Reaganoptics”

    10. Random Biden insult.

    11. ROFLMAOPIP

    12. Prediction-No sense of humor.
    Put them in any order and voila, you have a DCSCA Post!

    Rip Murdock (da0cad)

  149. Appalled (1a17de) — 2/21/2022 @ 1:48 pm

    My understanding about Biden’s position is that he will not commit US troops in any way, but he will in concert with the EU, unleash a swarm of sanctions that will push Russia back to the USSR days, when it comes to commerce with the West. (Well, I’m hping for a swarm. It may not be that).

    Also send military aid to Ukraine, give it intellience information, and go pretty close to running the war.

    In the meantime, they are edging toward urging American citizens to leave Russia.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  150. 143. Kevin M (38e250) — 2/21/2022 @ 4:37 pm

    So, the plan is Czechoslovakia, 1938, immortalized as the Munich Surrender.

    The Sudetenland was strategically important, and Czechoslovakia’s ability to resist depended in it, but the Donbass region of Ukraine isn’t.

    Of course, also in 1938 there might have been a coup – it’s not so likely here before the war. A replacement of the top man is more likely in China. There are institutional ways to do that.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  151. US weighs moving embassy out of Ukraine on threat from Russia

    LONDON/WASHINGTON (BLOOMBERG) – The US is discussing moving its embassy out of Ukraine after Russian President Vladimir Putin recognized two separatist regions in the eastern part of the country, according to three people familiar with the matter.

    The US is temporarily moving all State Department personnel out of Ukraine to Poland for security reasons, according to the people speaking on condition of anonymity.

    Biden officials intend for the personnel to return Tuesday (Feb 22) morning if there is no invasion by Russia, one of the people said. Spokespeople for the State Department and the National Security Council declined to comment. Russia denies it intends to invade.

    https://www.straitstimes.com/world/united-states/us-weighs-moving-embassy-out-of-ukraine-on-threat-from-russia

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  152. #151 Rip – Do you think DCCCP/DCSCA could pass a Turing test?

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  153. Vlad’s got himself some Joementum!

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  154. @151. Shorter: facts.

    Example: Random Biden insult: Kamala Harris.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  155. @146. I expect the Ukrainians to fight.

    Expect them to display token resistance for show- until the last free munitions are gone, then go ‘French’ – unless they are stupid enough to destroy their own homes, businesses and infrastructure.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  156. What the world needs to realize is that pigs who learned to walk on two legs are still pigs. “Four legs real, two legs sham.”

    Squealing Ukranians.

    Reaganoptics, nk.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  157. Biden officials intend for the personnel to return Tuesday (Feb 22) morning if there is no invasion by Russia

    So somebody panicked but if it doesn’t happen today, they won’t worry about Wednesday?

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  158. 151 Rip – Do you think DCCCP/DCSCA could pass a Turing test?

    It would be close.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  159. Or is this just a cover for removing something out of harm’s way but not letting the Russians know what is important? Or maybe adding something in Lviv that won’t be noticed with all this moving around?

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  160. The Sudetenland was strategically important, and Czechoslovakia’s ability to resist depended in it, but the Donbass region of Ukraine isn’t.

    Neither is important by itself, but Hitler made the West back down and terribly weakened the alliance.

    Even if Putin never goes another foot, NATO is wounded and all around will wonder if America will really come if Putin moves again. The “strategic” value of both is what people think when nothing is done. Kasparov’s “goalpost” comment is accurate.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  161. @142. It is a good plan, Nic. Because it is working.

    Admirably disciplined, defiantly resolute, flexibly timed and executed when the opportunity materialized. Thank Joe for that last bit thanks to the Afghan withdrawal debacle. A decade-plus in planning; and it has been telegraphed repeatedly by President Putin since the collapse of the CCCP. This should be no surprise to anybody paying attention. The consequences of the Confluence of Incompetence. Forget about Ukraine- it’s done. Focus on Taiwan: that’s where U.S. interests are most at risk. Xi Jinping is watch. THey’vew telegraphed intent on a shift to a New World Order as well. Joe’s shuttered two U.S. embassies in six months. Don’t be surprised if Taiwan makes three by Christmas.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  162. https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2022/02/21/statement-by-press-secretary-jen-psaki-on-russian-announcement-on-eastern-ukraine/

    We have anticipated a move like this from Russia….

    …To be clear: these measures are separate from and would be in addition to the swift and severe economic measures we have been preparing in coordination with Allies and partners should Russia further invade Ukraine.

    Sounds like there is a separate penalty for a mere incursion, after all.

    Putin said he would (or could?) send in Russian troops as peacekeepers.

    Pne problem here is that the line of control does not correspond to the boundaries of the provinces (oblasts) of donetsk and luhansk.

    It’s been reported that Russian troops are now actually in Donbass, but the media cannot confirm,

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  163. @163. Kasparov plays chess. Putin plays poker. Nobody is stopping former communist Kasparov from doffing camo and joining the Ukranian Freedom Fighters. IBut it’s a safe bet his White Rook won’t beat Vlad’s pair of deuces in this game. Your move, Garry.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  164. Putin’s Endgame: Unravel the Post-Cold War Agreements That Humiliated Russia
    ……..
    Mr. Putin spelled out a list of grievances Monday over the treatment of Russia by the U.S. and Europe in the past three decades. “Russia has every right to take retaliatory measures to ensure its own security,” he said. “This is exactly what we will do.”
    ……..
    In sum, Mr. Putin seeks to undo many of the security consequences of the Soviet Union’s collapse in 1991, an event the Russian leader has called the “greatest geopolitical catastrophe” of the 20th century.

    …….., It reflects what he saw at close hand in the 1990s: the collapse of the Soviet empire, Moscow’s reliance on the West for handouts as its economy went into free fall and his country’s internal chaos. The West, meanwhile, trumpeted its Cold War victory.
    ………

    Mr. Putin’s approach is aimed squarely at the U.S., over the heads of the other NATO countries, and it reflects several of his beliefs: that the world’s affairs should be settled by the great powers, which include Russia; NATO is a U.S. instrument in the way the Warsaw Pact was a Soviet one, and its other members lack agency; and Moscow should control its own backyard, as it did in the Soviet era.

    “Russia wants to have coercive power. This is what this is about,” said Fiona Hill, senior director for European and Russian affairs on the National Security Council during the Trump administration. Nothing is asked of Ukraine, which Mr. Putin has depicted as not even a country.

    In a lengthy essay published in July, Mr. Putin seeks to justify Russia’s claim to Ukraine, writing that Russians, Ukrainians and Belarusians are one people, all descended from Ancient Rus, the largest state in Europe in the ninth century. Kyiv, the Ukrainian capital, he wrote, is the mother of Russian cities.

    “For Putin, it’s not just 30 years of historical wrong but centuries of injury inflicted on Russia, the Soviet Union and the Russian Empire,” Ms. Hill said.
    ………
    Moscow’s current demands call for the U.S. to agree to block further NATO expansion—a step that would keep Ukraine, as well as Finland and Sweden, out of the alliance if they wanted to join. The U.S. has replied to the demands but hasn’t disclosed its contents.

    Russia also wants U.S. and other nonnational NATO forces to pull out of countries that joined NATO after 1997—which includes all those once in the Soviet orbit. It also seeks the withdrawal of U.S. nuclear weapons from Europe. Moscow wants the commitments in a treaty, presumably knowing no U.S. president would likely sign it, and the Senate would refuse to ratify it. America’s newest NATO allies would reject it, as well.
    ………
    Mr. Putin’s narrative of how the West deceived Moscow in the 1990s begins with deliberations over the reunification of Germany. It extends to the negotiations ahead of the NATO-Russia Founding Act in 1997, which laid out the basis for cooperation between the alliance and Russia.
    ……..
    (Mary Sarotte, history professor at Johns Hopkins University) used both official and personal records to examine the Russian claim. She found that U.S. and European politicians did suggest in 1990 that NATO wouldn’t expand east. In 1997, the alliance declared it had no intention of moving troops closer to the Soviet border. Moscow never received these assurances in legal form.
    ………..
    ……..(S)imilar statements by others were never made formal, largely because President George H.W. Bush wanted NATO to cover East Germany. The 1990 agreement that reunified Germany explicitly extended NATO to the territory of East Germany.
    ………..
    Always get it in writing and signed!

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  165. Rip Murdock (da0cad) — 2/21/2022 @ 5:05 pm

    Oh, don’t bother, Rip. Not that you’re wrong, but you can’t shame someone who has none. Just do what I did — use Beldar’s script to block him and move on. DS-CSA can have all the fun he wants mouthing his inanities to people who can’t hear him.

    Plus, and I have to say I consider this a bonus, it’s fun to scroll down the list and see how many comments he’s made that you can’t read. Last time I counted, it was over fifty. I mean, seriously, does he have a life away from this site? Poor lil’ guy.

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  166. What do investors in the Russian stock market think of Putin’s move? They don’t like it.

    Russia’s financial markets collapsed on Monday to their lowest level in more than a year as tensions ramped up in eastern Ukraine and the Kremlin rejected plans for a face-to-face meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin and President Joe Biden.

    What Happened: The ruble and European shares tumbled, while oil prices rose, as investors are increasingly concerned about an escalation between Moscow and the West.

    The pan-continental Stoxx Europe 600 fell 1.3%. The MOEX, Russia’s benchmark stock index, dropped by 10.5%, marking its biggest daily percentage loss since March 2014 during Russia’s invasion of Crimea. The ruble also lost ground throughout the day, falling 3.4% against the dollar.

    So “Czar” Putin’s move has already made Russians poorer.

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  167. @147. BTW, Russia loses a full-scale conventional war in Europe.

    It’s bad business to shoot your best customers: NATO/Europe.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  168. @169. Poorer?

    Live Gold Price Chart | Up-to-the-Minute Market Data

    https://silvergoldbull.com/price_chart

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  169. NATO is wounded and all around will wonder if America will really come if Putin moves again

    Nah. Article 5. Dear ol’Vlad will never assault his best energy customers. See #38. Dnieper River and secure a land bridge to Crimea; East Ukraine; West Ukraine.

    And everybody with the right portfolio win$$$.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  170. Biden to prohibit trade, investment with Ukraine breakaway regions -White House

    ‘WASHINGTON (Reuters) -President Joe Biden will issue an executive order soon that will prohibit economic activity between U.S. individuals and the two breakaway regions of eastern Ukraine that Russian President Vladimir Putin recognized as independent entities on Monday, the White House said.

    Putin’s recognition of the rebel-held areas could pave the way for Moscow to send military forces into the two regions – Donetsk and Luhansk – and argue that it is intervening as an ally to protect them against Ukraine.

    “We have anticipated a move like this from Russia and are ready to respond immediately,” White House spokesperson Jen Psaki said in a statement. “President Biden will soon issue an Executive Order that will prohibit new investment, trade, and financing by U.S. persons to, from, or in the so-called DNR and LNR regions of Ukraine.”

    The order will “also provide authority to impose sanctions on any person determined to operate in those areas of Ukraine,” Psaki said.

    Psaki said more measures were forthcoming and said these were separate from sanctions that the United States and its allies have been preparing if Russia invades Ukraine.

    “To be clear: these measures are separate from and would be in addition to the swift and severe economic measures we have been preparing in coordination with Allies and partners should Russia further invade Ukraine,” she said.

    Biden, who convened a meeting with his national security team at the White House earlier in the day, held a 35-minute call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy and had a call with French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz.

    “We are continuing to closely consult with Allies and partners, including Ukraine, on next steps and on Russia’s ongoing escalation along the border with Ukraine,” Psaki said.’

    https://news.yahoo.com/white-house-biden-prohibit-trade-204405120.html

    ‘No soup for you!’ – Soup Nazi [Larry Thomas ‘Seinfeld’ NBC TV 11/2/95

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  171. And four more comments in a row, just since I went away for a half-hour or so. Yikes. (On the off-chance one is addressed to me, buddy, please keep in mind that I can’t see your crap anymore!)

    So I went back and counted again. He’s now at 67 comments, out of the 173 that were posted as I started this. That’s close to 40% of all comments on this post.

    That’s just…really sad. He needs someone in his life.

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  172. This really changes nothing for Ukraine because Putin has been at war with this region for eight years. The key is what Biden will do, and Biden needs to kick Putin in the economic balls.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  173. @174. Just for you !

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  174. Yes, Demosthenes. It’s tedious and annoying at the same time. It’s akin to be talked over by a rude 5-year old who won’t shut the f–k up.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  175. @175. See 173, Paul. That’s his start; it’s about all he has in the quiver; economic sanctions. How he applies this may determine what occurs with Taiwan. But his track record isn’t encouraging. Forget about Ukraine. Taiwan is the real concern now in 2022.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  176. Yes, Demosthenes. It’s tedious and annoying at the same time. It’s akin to be talked over by a rude 5-year old who won’t shut the f–k up.

    Paul Montagu (5de684) — 2/21/2022 @ 7:31 pm

    Sadly he’s somewhat older than five, and has shown a stalwart resistance to learning. But now I get to ignore him all the time. It’s…what’s that word…glorious?

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  177. @177. Personal slurs = no arguement.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  178. You’re right. I’m not arguing.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  179. @179. Pfft.

    The real problem w/’most’ of you disgruntled types is you cannot accept that Mr. Putin is a competent head of state while Mr. Biden is clearly an incompetent head of state– who you peevishly backed over angst with the persona of your party’s nominee. And now you’re paying the price for it; at the pump, in the grocery store… and on the world stage.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  180. Seriously, Russia has a shorter history, by any measure, than the Arab states:

    The East Slavs emerged as a recognisable group in Europe between the 3rd and 8th centuries AD. The medieval state of Kievan Rus’ arose in the 9th century. In 988, it adopted Orthodox Christianity from the Byzantine Empire. Rus’ ultimately disintegrated, and among its principalities, the Grand Duchy of Moscow rose during the 15th century.

    Even its alphabet was a gift from the Byzantines to the Bulgars which eventually found its way North. Faced with Western civilization which, thanks to Julius Caesar, had reached all the Western barbarians 1,500 years before the existence of the Grand Duchy of Moscow, it cannot have anything but an inferiority complex.

    nk (1d9030)

  181. No one doubts Biden’s or Putin’s competency, but it’s unpatriotic and un-American to be rooting for an authoritarian dictator who’s been hostile to America since 2007, simply because you don’t like the current American president.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  182. @183 ‘… an inferiority complex.’

    Yep. That’s truly what it comes down to. And you don’t have to scratch’em too deeply for it to rear itself in almost any venue.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  183. Last time I counted, it was over fifty. I mean, seriously, does he have a life away from this site? Poor lil’ guy.
    Demosthenes (3fd56e) — 2/21/2022 @ 6:42 pm

    lol

    i don’t think Rip’s is the right shoulder to cry on

    JF (e1156d)

  184. @184. You’re confusing acknowledging and recognizing competence with rooting for the bad guys. Acknowledging Japan fashioned a well-planned and successful attack on Pearl Harbor doesn’t mean you are ‘rooting’ for them. Putin’s been planning this for years and it hasn’t been a secret to anybody paying attention. And it is to his credit that as a competent leader he took advantage of the incomptence he saw and used weakness at hand and made his move to his best advantage. The snmartest thing American -planners can do now is forget about Ukraine and focus on Taiwan, where U.S. interest are more at risk.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  185. Sure you’re not rooting for the bad guys, DCSCA, it’s only coincidence your comments are little different from the rest of Trump’s Koup Kucks Klan who are defending Putin and smearing Ukraine and the current American president.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  186. @188. Reread 182 & 187 again. You prove my point.

    ‘You can’t handle the truth.’ – Col. Nathan Jessep [Jack Nicholson] ‘A Few Good Men’ 1992

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  187. @184. No one doubts Biden’s or Putin’s competency

    Step away from the bong, Paul.

    Joe’s ‘competence’ is in great doubt- by his own actions and history. Ask his own party members; ask Hillary; look at his polls. OTOH, Vlad’s competence is not in question at all; ask his own party comrades; ask Hillary; look at his polls.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  188. Read closer, DCSCA. “Competency” can read as Biden’s low competency or Putin’s higher competency, which is how it was intended. I’ve commented enough times here that you should know my opinion about how Biden has handled things like Afghanistan and the southern border.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  189. Low competency??? Nice try.

    He’s incompetent. End of story.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  190. Paul, I admire you for your efforts. But DS-CSA was beyond reason or good-faith disputation years ago. Now he delights in his verbal Molotov-ery all over the thread. (76 of 192 prior comments, and counting…)

    This is one five-year-old you can actually shut up. Let him earn his paycheck from Uncle Vlad by speaking to a room packed with people who can’t hear him. He gets his rubles. We get peace and quiet. And the only people he’ll catch are the drive-bys, and other people like JF and steveg who are similarly beyond any help.

    Demosthenes (3fd56e)

  191. Putin has well established since he invaded Georgia that he’s a bad actor, but his decision and his speech today is making it clear that he’s irrational actor, which means he even more of a threat. Tom Nichols:

    Even discounting Putin’s delivery, the speech was, in many places, simply unhinged. Putin began with a history lesson about how and why Ukraine even exists. For all his Soviet nostalgia, the Russian president is right that his Soviet predecessors intentionally created a demographic nightmare when drawing the internal borders of the U.S.S.R., a subject I’ve explained at length here.

    But Putin’s point wasn’t that the former subjects of the Soviet Union needed to iron out their differences. Rather, he was suggesting that none of the new states that emerged from the Soviet collapse—except for Russia—were real countries. “As a result of Bolshevik policy,” Putin intoned, “Soviet Ukraine arose, which even today can with good reason be called ‘Vladimir Ilyich Lenin’s Ukraine’. He is its author and architect.”

    It is true that Soviet leaders created the 1991 borders. That is also true of what we now call the Russian Federation. Putin, however, went even further back in history: “Ukraine never had a tradition of genuine statehood.”

    By that kind of historical reasoning, few nations in Europe, or anywhere else, are safe. Putin’s foray into history was nothing less than a demand that only Moscow—and only the Kremlin’s supreme leader—has the right to judge what is or is not a sovereign state (as I recently discussed here). Putin’s claims are hardly different from Saddam Hussein’s rewriting of Middle East history when Iraq tried to erase Kuwait from the map.

    By Putin’s measure, Poland has even less reason than Ukraine to exist.
    It’s funny that certain people admire Putin’s competency just like folks who admired Mussolini for running the trains on time.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  192. Paul,

    Polands getting 250 M1 sep3’s. They have 250 Lep2 tanks and 1,000 mbt72 – with new turrets. Poland is seeking F35 and AH64 in large numbers. In a year they will be a very powerful army.

    EPWJ (0fbe92)

  193. This day in history, 2/21/2022:
    1. Putin unilaterally declared that two Ukrainian regions were no longer Ukraine.
    2. Trump officially started “Truth” Social.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  194. EPWJ, in a year Putin could own that “very powerful army”, akin to how we “armed” the Taliban after the collapse of Afghanistan. In a year, I hope Zelensky is still alive and still fighting Putin’s imperialist hegemony.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  195. By Putin’s measure, Poland has even less reason than Ukraine to exist.

    Not really. Revisit Ukraine’s history: ‘From 1922 until the end of the Cold War, Ukraine was part of the Soviet Union (In fact it was one of the founding states of the former Soviet Union). At the time, it was called the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic and was governed by the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.’ Which is a factor motivating nostalgic Soviet Vlad.

    It’s funny that certain people admire Putin’s competency just like folks who admired Mussolini for running the trains on time.

    Amtrak is choo-choo Joe’s province. Even funnier how certain people confuse acknowledging and recognizing competence with rooting for the bad guys. But then, their guilt-ridden angst backing an incompetent simply due to a peevish objection to the persona of their party’s nominee is quite a burdensome price to pay- especially at the grocery store, the gas pump… and now on the world stage.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  196. @196. This day in history, 2/21/1972:

    Nixon Goes to China.

    The Big Dick played to wedge between the PRC and the USSR. Half a century later, Russia rolls into Ukraine as the U.S. shutters its embassy … and China is now the second largest growing global economy – and catching up w/t USA fast.

    Thanks,,, Dick.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nixon_goes_to_China

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  197. Paul, I admire you for your efforts. But DS-CSA was beyond reason or good-faith disputation years ago.

    I appreciate that, Demosthenes, and I agree, but today was a crap moment in history and I’m not feeling particularly charitable.

    Timothy Snyder has some expertise on Russian and Ukrainian history.

    Vladimir Putin, a former KGB officer, is an heir of this tradition. He was entirely unknown when chosen by Boris Yeltsin to be his successor in August 1999; his approval rating stood at 2 percent. The next month a series of bombs exploded in Russian cities. Putin was quick to assign blame for the attacks to Chechen terrorists, and began a war to subdue the breakaway Russian region of Chechnya. His approval rating was suddenly 45 percent. No evidence was produced that any Chechen had anything to do with the terror attacks. There was evidence, on the other hand, that it had been an inside job by the FSB (as the former KGB is now known). In one city, FSB officers were apprehended as suspects by their colleagues. Putin then went on to win presidential elections in March 2000, and has been with us ever since.

    The technological advances of the 21st century have only helped Putin’s cause. Thanks to social media, Putin’s invasion of Ukraine in 2014 was a triumph of postmodern provocation. If you were on the left, you heard that Ukraine was Nazi; if you were on the right, you were told that it was gay; if you were on the far right, you were told that it was Jewish. Such stories prevented people in the West from seeing the simple truth: One country had invaded another, taken its territory, and killed and displaced its civilians. Encouraged by success in Ukraine, Russia applied the same techniques to the Brexit referendum and an American presidential election, with similar results. People on Facebook or Twitter in the United Kingdom or the United States were dealing with someone other than whom they thought they were, and took actions that served a hidden hand: digital maskirovka.

    The 2014 invasion was also rich in traditional provocations. Having occupied Crimea in February 2014, Russia sent special forces into eight more Ukrainian districts to organize irregular war.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  198. I appreciate that, Demosthenes, and I agree, but today was a crap moment in history and I’m not feeling particularly charitable.

    … and Putin smiled. 😉

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  199. So I went back and counted again. He’s now at 67 comments, out of the 173 that were posted as I started this.

    I have been, against my will, been forced to drag out the blocker script again. It’s a time-saver.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  200. Polands getting 250 M1 sep3’s. They have 250 Lep2 tanks and 1,000 mbt72 – with new turrets. Poland is seeking F35 and AH64 in large numbers. In a year they will be a very powerful army.

    And the Poles were willing to charge tanks on horseback at the last rodeo. We should send them some of the A10s the Air Force is trying to get rid of.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  201. Jim Miller (406a93) — 2/21/2022 @ 6:08 pm—

    Revising and extending my remarks:

    151 Rip – Do you think DCCCP/DCSCA could pass a Turing test?

    We would need to administer the Voight-Kampff test by a blade runner to know for sure.

    Rip Murdock (d67a00)

  202. president toughnuts needs his wife to make some pudding

    mg (8cbc69)

  203. 81 million morons gave us president not so toughnuts

    mg (8cbc69)

  204. i don’t think Hunter trusts joe
    , but you 81 million, do

    mg (8cbc69)

  205. DCSCA

    You realize that the competent Vlad just rubbed China’s face in it. They urged Russia to stick to the Minsk agreement. Putin abrogated it.

    Is it smart to do that to an ally that values in it losing face?

    Ahhh, non-Biden super geniuses are soooo smart.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  206. Great, Appalled…Omega Man is just 47 years behind schedule.

    urbanleftbehind (e5b33c)

  207. Paul

    Russia is broke. They have spent their money on a new class of boomers and frigates. their missile silos are dark, their 1st line tank divisions have 1990’s equipment. the people stopped supporting him a decade ago. The airforce has 30 year old airframes and 40 year old missiles. Those regions he “invaded” already were under Russian rule already and far away from the Ukraine armed forced

    EPWJ (0fbe92)

  208. Well indeed, DCCCP is only worth so much time. I can only listen so long to his “appreciation” of the competence and efficiency of the anti-liberal authoritarian state…..and the incongruence of on one hand him saying that he’s not rooting for evil, but on the other him persistently urging Putin to roll his tanks. I can imagine DCCCP as a boy on the streets of Paris cheering those efficient Nazi tanks as they rolled by. Winners you know.

    I would be less concerned if his prattle was itself isolated. However, as we’ve seen, the hard right is saturated with Putin apologists. And it’s not just Tucker (though he and Hawley show up frequently on tape on Russia state TV) as outlined here by Charlie Sykes

    https://morningshots.thebulwark.com/p/putins-right-wing-shills?utm_source=url

    No one…literally no one…..is calling for US troops in Ukraine. I support direct military aid to make it difficult on Putin, intelligence sharing, and moral support and follow it up with tough economic sanctions and isolation of Russia. Russia is not our friend….as it works against us at every opportunity. Trump’s message on Russia was wrong and it’s one of many reasons why his leadership is taking the GOP in a horrible nihilist direction.

    AJ_Liberty (3cb02f)

  209. #203 If the modern Poles fight as well as their predecessors in the Polish 1st Armored Division, they will be formidable:

    The Polish 1st Armoured Division (Polish 1 Dywizja Pancerna) was an armoured division of the Polish Armed Forces in the West during World War II. Created in February 1942 at Duns in Scotland, it was commanded by Major General Stanisław Maczek and at its peak numbered approximately 18,000 soldiers. The division served in the final phases of the Battle of Normandy in August 1944 during Operation Totalize and the Battle of Chambois and then continued to fight throughout the campaign in Northern Europe, mainly as part of the First Canadian Army.

    (I assume everyone knows that Polish pilots were an important part of the Royal Air Force during World War II.)

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  210. Those regions he “invaded” already were under Russian rule already and far away from the Ukraine armed forced

    Irrelevant, and I object to “invaded”, because this didn’t start yesterday.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  211. @210, you’re very much correct. Although they do have a /lot/ of old equipment.

    Time123 (07ab6e)

  212. Jim’s comments @212 about the Poles at reminded me not only that FDR sold them out at Yalta, but also that Versailles was also negotiated by an American President with one foot in the grave. And now we have the third one in the Oval Office, with one foot in the grave I mean, and I don’t expect him to shine, either. DCSCA is not altogether wrong.

    (Delivery, DCSCA! Work on your delivery!)

    nk (1d9030)

  213. Paul,

    Sure, but he’s avoiding open war with the Ukrainians, he’d get his butt kicked

    EPWJ (0fbe92)

  214. nk,

    Yep!

    EPWJ (0fbe92)

  215. Sure, but he’s avoiding open war with the Ukrainians, he’d get his butt kicked

    The Ukraine military budget is $6 billion and Putin spends ten times that much. I wouldn’t be so certain about Ukraine coming out on top.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  216. DCCCP: “OTOH, Vlad’s competence is not in question at all; ask his own party comrades; ask Hillary; look at his polls”

    And if Vlad has any detractors, don’t worry, he’ll just poison them or send them to the gulag.

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  217. Countries by GDP/population

    9. U.S. $63.4k
    15. Sweden $52.3k
    22. Germany $46.2k
    37. Puerto Rico $32.3k
    47. Estonia $23.0k
    55. Slovakia $19.3k
    63. Poland $15.7k
    75. Panama $12.5k
    85. Russia $10.1k
    92. Cuba $9.5k

    Yeah, Vlad’s really got that Russian standard of living humming along. I can see why the Russian people and DCCCP love him so…..competency…indeed

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  218. Paul,

    60 billion when you’re blowing most of it on nukes, space, subs. The steath bomber budget alone was 10 billion. Massive military payroll and R&D…..

    The Ukrainians are probably spending 11, all on defensive arms.

    EPWJ (0fbe92)

  219. 194. Paul Montagu (5de684) — 2/21/2022 @ 8:44 pm

    By Putin’s measure, Poland has even less reason than Ukraine to exist

    No, tere used to be a Poland (and a Lithuania, or a combination) back in the 1700s until Poland was partitioned three times. Napoleon created a Grand Duchy of Warsaw. There was a Polish rebellion in the 1860s. An independent Poland was, I think, one of Woodrow Wilaon’s ideas.

    But as for Ukraine, nobody thought such a country existed, or should exist, before World War I.

    Putin is not telling the complete truth when he says it was created by “Bolshevik, Communist Russia.” It is true they created it, but Imperial Germany had sponsored a “Ukraine” first, and this was done for propaganda purposes. That is also why they created a dozen or so supposed republics instead of it all being Russia.

    Putin complains also that “Lenin and is associates” split Ukraine off from Russia in the sloppiest way,

    He also does not mention that now (since 1939) Ukraine includes part of the Austria-Hungarian empire.(technically under Hungary) The part called Galicia, which was part of Poland between the wars, and a little piece of Czechoslovakia (what would now be Slovakia) and Hungary and Romania, although the former part of Romania is now mostly Moldova (Russia dominated) and unrecognized statelet of Transnistria. Putin has liked these little statelets – they can be used for criminal activity – he’s got them in other places too. (which raises the question: Does he really want to get rid of them in Ukraine?)

    Also some of what was Lithuania between the wars is now part of Ukraine, I read, although I thought the northern part of eastern Poland was incorporated into Belarus so how would any part of Lithuania wind up in Ukraine.

    Another thing, Russia has apiece of non contiguous territory on the Baltic (still called Kaliningrad Oblast, after an Old Bolshevik. The city Kaliningrad is the former Königsberg, famous for the seven bridges puzzle of Euler.) East Prussia was divided in two after World War II and mostly the southern part was given to Poland (as part of the compensation for losing its eastern third) and the rest to the Soviet Union but that part was never incorporated into any of the Soviet republics.

    https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/81573/theres-little-known-part-russia-europe

    Putin also complained about Khrushchev transferring Crimea from Russia to the Ukrainian SSR in 1954.

    Now it’s correct that boundaries of Ukraine and even its existence at all is an accident of history, but that’s true for a lot of boundaries and countries.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  220. They are staying away from promising the toughest sanctions – they don’t want to remove Russia from the SWIFT system because that would make it difficult for Russia to pay its debts to some European compaanies.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  221. Here’s another clue that they have told Russia they’ve broken some of their less secure codes/penetrated their computers/have some informants – one thing or the other.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/21/us/politics/biden-putin.html

    …Not only did the United States have images of troops moving into position, it also had the Russian military’s plans for a campaign against Ukraine — elements of which had already begun. At one of the morning meetings, Mr. Biden dispatched William J. Burns, the C.I.A. director, to Moscow with a message for Mr. Putin:

    We know what you’re planning to do…

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  222. Those regions he “invaded” already were under Russian rule already and far away from the Ukraine armed forced (sic)

    They are not “far away” for the Ukraine armed forces. They are on the front lines.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  223. DCSCA (f4c5e5) — 2/21/2022 @ 7:57 pm

    The snmartest thing American -planners can do now is forget about Ukraine and focus on Taiwan, where U.S. interest are more at risk.

    Taiwan thinks rthe best detrrence is taking a stand on Ukraine. And some people think abandoning Afghanistan and not placing killing sanctions on Pakistan led to this now.

    The United States is not committing armed forces to confronting Russia in a way that will diminish the ability to defend Taiwan. China may want that. If so, it’s not getting it.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  224. Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 2/22/2022 @ 9:06 am

    They are not “far away” for the Ukraine armed forces. They are on the front lines.

    These statelets claim about three times as much area as they actually control.

    Ukrainian is not taking any offensive actions, as Putin claims they want to or are doing. They are firing only in self defense.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  225. Yeah, Vlad’s really got that Russian standard of living humming along. I can see why the Russian people and DCCCP love him so…..competency…indeed

    Russia spends more on the US on defense as a share of GDP-4.3% of a smaller GDP versus 3.7% of a much larger US GDP.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  226. Source for #228..

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  227. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ethnolingusitic_map_of_ukraine.png

    Putin has taken 3 (4 if you count Sevastopol) of the areas on this map. Guess which others complete the puzzle.

    steveg (e81d76)

  228. 222 Error.

    I wrote: ..although the former part of Romania is now mostly Moldova (Russia dominated) and unrecognized statelet of Transnistria.

    It’s only Transnistria that is dominated by Russia.

    In 1939, Poland and Romania used to have a border. No longer.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  229. Putin has an accurate reading of the situation in D.C. and understands that the Biden Bunch are all smoke, mirrors and horsesh*t.

    A weak U.S. administration invites mischief and deserves everything it gets. Unfortunately, American citizens pay a heavy price for this incompetence.

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  230. Yesterday, Putin engaged in some acting, as well as telling lies (he made some faulty arguments, also)
    s points also

    https://www.ft.com/content/95074e66-2da9-431e-8959-2039f5d3c08d

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  231. One actor didn’t like his lines:

    At one point, Sergei Naryshkin, the powerful foreign intelligence chief, suggested using the threat of recognition as a tool to compel Ukraine to conclude peace on Moscow’s terms. Putin then told him: “Are you proposing starting the negotiation process, or recognise the republics’ sovereignty? Speak clearly!”

    Naryshkin began to stutter. “I will support the decision to recognise.”

    Putin cut him off. “I will support or I support? Speak clearly, Sergei!”

    A visibly flustered Naryshkin mumbled that he supported incorporating the separatist territories into Russia.

    “That’s not what we’re discussing!” Putin said. “We’re talking about whether to recognise their independence or not.”

    Naryshkin meekly assented.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  232. The Ukraine military budget is $6 billion and Putin spends ten times that much. I wouldn’t be so certain about Ukraine coming out on top.

    But how much is Putin able to lose before he has internal problems? If it bogs down, even a little bit, the specter of Afghanistan will, um, haunt him. He’s not a king, he’s a president, and there’s some indication that he has political opposition over this invasion even now. He can be removed, at which point he’s no longer on the tiger’s back.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  233. Wow, what a total traitorous statement. Really crapping on the country and the service of people who you will never measure up to. Maybe its all you are

    1) I don’t view 9/11 as a victory for the USA. If you do, please explain.

    2) And, heck, you really need to apologize for that statement, or explain it, because it seems like a baseless attack to me.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  234. The point, Sammy, is that Polish and Lithuanian borders were all over the place over the centuries, not unlike Ukraine’s, and was typical for other nations across the European continent. I’ll refer again to Timothy Snyder, who has a comprehensive knowledge of their history and it definitely conflicts with Putin’s distorted take. There was a Kyivan Rus that was around centuries ago, long before Russia came into the picture.
    But all of this is actually irrelevant. Putin’s Russian Federation pledged to respect Ukrainian sovereignty by 1994 memorandum and 1997 treaty.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  235. These times call for a lefty warrior who will stand strong and resolute.

    Lt.Col. Vindman? C’mon down and let loose the Bearclaws of War!

    Colonel Haiku (2601c0)

  236. Appalled
    3 days ago the Russians signed an agreement to sell 100 million metric tons of coal to China
    https://www.foxnews.com/world/russia-china-new-coal-deal-state-media
    The also signed a deal for 40 Million tons with India

    They signed a deal early this month for gas via the Power of Siberia pipeline
    “4 Feb 2022
    President Vladimir Putin has unveiled new Russian oil and gas deals with China worth an estimated $117.5bn, promising to ramp up Russia’s Far East exports at a time of heightened tension with European customers over the Ukraine crisis.

    Russia, already Beijing’s third-largest gas supplier, has been strengthening ties with China, the world’s biggest energy consumer, reducing its dependence on its traditional European energy customers.”
    https://www.aljazeera.com/economy/2022/2/4/china-and-russia-boost-energy-alliance-with-30-year-gas-contract

    “Separately, Russian oil giant Rosneft, headed by longstanding Putin ally Igor Sechin, signed a deal with China’s CNPC to supply 100 million tonnes of oil through Kazakhstan over 10 years, effectively extending an existing deal.

    Rosneft said the new deal was worth $80bn.”

    Hard to really read the Chinese.
    Xi seemed to affirm Russia somewhat, Wang Yi seemed more contrary. That is probably the tactics toward implementing a larger strategy
    What really matters is if China has agreed not to mess with Russian energy sales and to circumvent sanctions in cross border trade.
    India will still want its coal and the EU still needs their gas.

    I suppose we could sanction Shell Oil facilities in the Russian Pacific, but that probably only hurts Shell

    steveg (e81d76)

  237. China also sends enormous amounts of goods to Europe across the Russian rail system, so it will be easy to beat sanctions that way

    steveg (e81d76)

  238. It wasn;t goat herders from Afghanistan who planned the 9/11 attacks. It was probably Pakistan’s rouge military intelligence agency (the ISI) in combination with some Saudi Arabian conspirators – the head of Saudi intelligence was fired 10 days before but the actual government could not discover and undo what he had facilitated at least not without telling the United States.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  239. Under the subject of Words Matter, here’s some corrective nomenclature on Putin’s war against Ukraine:

    No: Crisis in Ukraine.
    Yes: Russia’s war against Ukraine.

    No: Ukraine crisis. Ukraine conflict. Civil war.
    Yes: Russia’s war against Ukraine. Russian aggression against Ukraine.

    No: If Russia invades Ukraine…
    Yes: If Russia renews its invasion, or reinvades…

    No: Pro-Russian separatists. Russian-backed rebels.
    Yes: Russia-led forces. Russian occupation forces.

    No: Rebel-held or separatist-held territory of Donbas.
    Yes: Russian-controlled areas of Donbas.

    No: The Ukraine, a former Soviet republic, or post-Soviet state.
    Yes: Ukraine, a sovereign state.

    No: Kiev, Donbass, Odessa.
    Yes: Kyiv, Donbas, Odesa.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  240. Sammy, your wild speculations are always interesting, but hardly facts.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  241. The snmartest thing American -planners can do now is forget about Ukraine and focus on Taiwan, where U.S. interest are more at risk.

    Ah, I see amongst all the stuff DCSCA said last night was this policy plank. Allowing Putin to invade Ukraine with no consequences at all, however, is forgetting about Taiwan too. I don’t think there is a person here who says lets send forces to the Ukraine. I think there is a concern on sending anything important to the Ukraine in miltitary hardware, because we might be gifting it to the Russians. The sanctions need to be tough and real and stay in place.

    China needs America to finance its ambitions. Sanctions from the US and NATO seriously hits its bottom line. They need to understand this can happen to them if they invade sovreign breakaway provinces.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  242. Not interested in playing games of “how long a country?” One either accepts that a country exists, now, with internationally recognized borders, or one does not. If not, then fine, but don’t then pretend that some other borders, more convenient to you, are “the real ones.” They aren’t.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  243. @208. Appalled: Confucius say Man On Top Of Hill Not On Level:

    CHINA’s leader Xi Jinping is watching the West’s reaction to the Ukraine crisis “with pleasure,” a former UK Ambassador to Russia has warned.

    https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/1569553/China-latest-Xi-Jinping-Taiwan-latest-Russia-invasion-Ukraine-news-world-war-3-vn

    China’s Ukraine Crisis
    What Xi Gains—and Loses—From Backing Putin

    https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/china/2022-02-21/chinas-ukraine-crisis

    =mike-drop=

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  244. @240. Yep.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  245. Paul

    Listen to these words from Biden in late January

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c67eB14OWJc

    steveg (e81d76)

  246. No one…literally no one…..is calling for US troops in Ukraine. I support direct military aid to make it difficult on Putin crowes the ever conservative budget conscious AJ.

    Military aid?? When do you plan to purchase Ukranian Defense Bonds from Uncle Sam, AJ?

    … and the Military Industrial Complex smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  247. Zelensky’s address is pretty solid, Churchillian, considering that he was a comedian in a former life.

    Dear people, we and our state do not have time for long lectures on history. I will not talk about the past. I will talk about current realities and our future. Ukraine is within its internationally recognized borders, and will remain so. Despite any statements and actions of the Russian Federation. We remain calm and confident. I want to thank all our citizens for this.

    You are proving once again that Ukrainians are a smart and wise nation. And in spite of everything we keep a cool head, react calmly, carefully, like an adult. we are ready for anything. But there is no reason for you to have a sleepless night.

    Tonight we held a meeting of the National Security and Defense Council. Ukraine qualifies the latest actions of the Russian Federation as a violation of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of our state.

    All responsibility for these decisions are made by Russia’s political leadership. Recognition of the independence of the occupied areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions mean Russia’s unilateral withdrawal from the Minsk agreements, and them ignoring decisions within Normandy format.

    It undermines peaceful efforts and destroys existing negotiation formats. With today’s and, possibly, tomorrow’s decisions, Russia is legalizing its troops, which have actually been in the occupied territories of Donbas since 2014.

    A country that has been supporting the war for 8 years cannot maintain peace as it claims. I discussed the situation with French President Macron, German Chancellor Scholz, US President Biden, British Prime Minister Johnson, and European Council President Michel.

    I also plan to talk with Turkish President Erdogan. What will happen next? We want peace. and we are consistent in our actions. Today, Ukraine sent a request to the UN Security Council member states to hold immediate consultations on the basis of the Budapest Memorandum.

    I initiated the convening of the UN Security Council and a special meeting of the OSCE. We insist on the OSCE to prevent provocations and further escalation. An emergency convocation of the Normandy summit was also initiated.

    We expect clear and effective support steps from our partners. It is very important to see now who is our true friend and partner, and who will continue to frighten the Russian Federation with words.

    We are committed to political and diplomatic regulation and do not succumb to any provocations. Our borders are securely protected. A system of territorial defense was created. Our partners support us.

    In accordance with Article 51 of the UN Charter, Ukraine reserves the right for individual and collective self-defense. We can distinguish between the provocations and the offensive of the aggressor’s troops.

    Truth is on our side. We will never hide the truth from you. As soon as we see a change in the situation, as soon as we see an increase in risk, you will know all about it. There is currently no reason for chaotic actions. We will do everything to make it so in the future.

    We are committed to a peaceful and diplomatic path, and we will follow it. We are on our land. We are not afraid of anything or anyone. We owe nothing to anyone, and we will not give anything to anyone.

    We are sure of this, because now it is not February 2014, but February 2022. Our country is different, our army is different. The only goal is peace in Ukraine. Glory to Ukraine.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  248. @248. You notice he actually had to put his head down and RERAD ‘it’s gonig to be a disaster for Russia’ off a note card??!!!

    He’s incompetent.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  249. Listen to these words from Biden in late January

    I heard them on the day he said “minor incursion”, steve, and it still grates. I supposed that’s why Keilar nailed a Biden flunky this morning about whether Putin’s actions were an invasion.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  250. @232. Yep, Colonel. There’s something to be said for competence.

    … and Putin smiled.

    _______

    @245. One either accepts that a country exists, now, with internationally recognized borders, or one does not. If not, then fine, but don’t then pretend that some other borders, more convenient to you, are “the real ones.” They aren’t.

    ROFLMAO. You’re living in the wrong state, Kevin. Move to Texas, mutter that, and you can be elected governor.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  251. 243. Kevin M (38e250) — 2/22/2022 @ 10:20 am

    Sammy, your wild speculations are always interesting, but hardly facts.

    Sometimes they are wilder, sometimes they’re not.

    There was anetwork in Saudi Arabia thaat recruited the hijackers.

    It was possible because the reason there had been practically no hijackings in the previous 30 years was deterrence, not good security. The terrorists had only to combine up with a few ideas. Pakistani intelligence was protecting Osama bin Laden for years. He was living in a house near Pakistan’s “West Point.”

    My wilder speculation is that Pakistani intelligence was bribed to support terrorism. (it didn’t make sense for Pakistan)

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  252. @211. DCSCA is a hard right winger, AJ?

    LOL Pshaw.

    Welcome to 1964. 😉

    … and dead Goldwater Girl Momma smiled.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  253. Breaking- Joe Biden late for own funeral.

    The incompetent should have had these “sanctions” in his pocket on a card ready to roll weeks ago. So he stalls, markets flutter down and investors flee to quality.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  254. Kevin: @148: “We were knocked on our ass by goat-herders in the hills of Afghanistan in 2001”

    I think this is what EPWJ was responding to. I’m not sure it’s fair to say our military was knocked on its a$$ in 2001. I think we drove the Taliban into its holes and won every major engagement early on. The fact that the Taliban was able to hang on and survive speaks more to the unique and tribal nature of Afghan society. In the end, we were not able to change enough hearts and minds….and the majority of its society prefers to live back in the Middle Ages. That’s not a military defeat…it shows more the limit of imposing modernity where that is seen as a threat. I think EPWJ took exception to the characterization of being militarily beaten.

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  255. Zelensky’s address is pretty solid, Churchillian, considering that he was a comedian in a former life.

    Whistling past the graveyard.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  256. @250. More Alexander Dubcek than Winston Churchill, Paul.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  257. Zelensky: All responsibility for these decisions are made by Russia’s political leadership.

    True, as far as it goes, but all indications are that they are made by one man: Vladimir Putin. And nobody else wants anything to do with this, let alone something more aggressive. Despite the stage play Putin put on yesterday.

    But Zelensky doesn’t want to personalize it because that would make Putin afraid Ukraine might be planning something and that could make Putin somewhat reckless.

    One man rule can be dangerous.

    Zelensky: It undermines peaceful efforts and destroys existing negotiation formats

    What’s destroying that more is Putin’s considerable departure from reality in his public statements – Biden is trying to ignore all that and also force him back into acknowledging reality. How can you negotiate on the basis of fantasies?

    Zelensky: A country that has been supporting the war for 8 years cannot maintain peace as it claims.

    A quick dismissal of a prominent claim by Putin – it is almost a question why he should bother to do this, but he maybe couldn’t resist pointing this out.

    Zelensky: It is very important to see now who is our true friend and partner, and who will continue to frighten the Russian Federation with words.

    Opppsites. He needs more than words. If so it should be “who will continue to try to frighten the Russian Federation with words. I think here he may be talking about Erdogan. He won’t be regarded as a friend if words are all he does.

    Zelensky: We can distinguish between the provocations and the offensive of the aggressor’s troops.

    I think this means what to take seriously, and what is only an attempt to accuse Ukraine of starting the war and not a prelude to anything else by those selfsame troops. They are only going to act when it matters. And they will not be bluffed.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  258. DSCSA @259, Wars are win or lost by intelligence. In Afghanistan the United States was completely outclassed by the Taliban Pakistan;s rogue military intelligence agency, the ISI.

    Different people are involved dealing with Russia.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  259. Word Salad Joe– and with every line, the market ticker plummets.

    Utterly, totally reactive; not proactive.

    The consequences of the Confluence of Incompetence.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  260. As a former KGB thug, “Czar” Putin must be dismayed at our penetration of the Russian government. If there was anything he was supposed to be good at, it was the spy business, but the continuing revelations by our government of his plans shows that Putin is incompetent even at counter-espionage. And that he can’t trust anyone in his government. (That may explain why he seated himself so far from his “chorus” the other day.)

    (I had forgotten that I have a collection of Russian jokes, compiled by Tobi Okk, but was reminded yesterday. Here’s one I think appropriate: “As a former KGB agent, Putin can make a happy meal cry.” But somehow he has been unable to stop his government from leaking like a sieve.)

    Jim Miller (406a93)

  261. @261. Different people are involved dealing with Russia.

    Sammy, there may be different people on the Russia Desk, but final decision makers are the same incompetent crowd.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  262. AJ, apparently I was unclear that we were “knocked on our ass” by the al-Queda operation in NY and DC.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  263. 264. DCSCA (f4c5e5) — 2/22/2022 @ 11:35 am

    Sammy, there may be different people on the Russia Desk, but final decision makers are the same incompetent crowd.

    If the underlings are competent, the big bosses don’t need to be too competent.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  264. China also sends enormous amounts of goods to Europe across the Russian rail system, so it will be easy to beat sanctions that way

    Perhaps. But the last time that China was given the choice of who to trade with, they chose us. At this point in history, I think they’d be lucky to have that continue, and they need us far more than we need them.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  265. @265, that clarifies it…thanks

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  266. I see that Biden, being a Democrat, is going back to the well-worn mistake of incremental escalation. Fine-tuned sanctions. Scaring the frog by turning up the heat slowly. And, when they say “That isn’t so bad” as they always do, we take it to the next level. Until it breaks and we give up of we have war. Iraq was like that.

    We should have slammed all the sanctions on all at once.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  267. @265, that clarifies it…thanks

    I see the confusion as to what the “in the hills” part referred to. That was where the goat-herders were, not where we got hit.

    Kevin M (38e250)

  268. #266 nails the problem with the DCSCA competence carping. It’s the policy that matters. As long as Biden starts something and sticks to it, his napping habots don’t matter.

    #269 I think a two tier approch is defensible. If the Russians don’t invade territory they didn’t invade and hold before, that’s less bad then simply taking all of Ukraine.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  269. @271. The Confluence of Incompetence runs deep.

    ‘If the underlings are competent, the big bosses don’t need to be too competent.’ Except they aren’t. See 9/11, Gulf of Tonkin, Watergate, Iran-Conta, etc. for details.

    =mike-drop=

    “The truth is, these are not very bright guys, and things got out of hand.” – ‘Deep Throat’ [Hal Holbrook] ‘All The President’s Men’ 1976

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  270. OK — in DCSCA world, the folks at Froggy Bottom are either G. Gordon Liddy or E. Howard Hunt. Putin is the second coming of Otto von Bismark.

    The US will do no right. Russia will do no wrong.

    Um, ok. Let me know when the standard of living in Moscow gets better than the standard of living in Detroit. Until then, I will join the President in a nap and an ice cream conw.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  271. Thanks for the response Paul.

    I guess an incursion is one of those things that is minor when it happens to someone else.

    Looking at that Biden statement through the rearview mirror in my Tuesday Morning QB seat, Biden lacked competence at an unfortunate time.

    steveg (e81d76)

  272. @273. The US will do no right…

    Gulf of Tonkin, Pentagon Papers, Watergate, Saigon collapse, Iran Hostages, Iran-Contra, Beirut barracks, 9/11, faux WMD, Kabul won’t be Saigon…

    =mike-drop=

    Sooner or later Appalled, you’re going to realize being smacked in the forehead w/a 2X4 decade after decade… hurts.

    DCSCA (f4c5e5)

  273. Jim Miller (406a93) — 2/22/2022 @ 11:34 am

    And that he can’t trust anyone in his government. (That may explain why he seated himself so far from his “chorus” the other day.)

    Well, that could have something to do with his fear of Covid. He was near Xi and president of Belorus. Either he trusts them more to do everything he wants, or they agree to take more precautions – go through a decontamination process. I can;t say Xi would humiliate himself to stand next to Putin. Maybe Putin is treating China as the medical experts.

    Sammy Finkelman (46ec7d)

  274. Assuming DCCCP isn’t a paid Russian troll, what exactly would be different if he was?

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  275. DCSCA,

    Given your long experience in broadcasting, I would think you’d do a better job of keeping hold of the microphone.

    Also, I note in your long long list only 2 events in the last 20 years. And you missed the winning the Cold War part and the beating Al Qaeda and ISIS part.

    Also, it’s not like genius Putin has a long run of success. His economy is puny and remains puny, despite all the natural resources Russia has. Seems like he has the Reaganoptics down.

    Appalled (1a17de)

  276. DCSCA,
    ………
    Also, I note in your long long list only 2 events in the last 20 years. And you missed the winning the Cold War part and the beating Al Qaeda and ISIS part.

    DCSCA isn’t interested in American victories.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  277. First Russian aircraft shot down.

    EPWJ (0fbe92)


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