Patterico's Pontifications

12/29/2022

The New York Times Is Wrong: Ukraine Is Not Taking A “Hard Line” In Their Efforts To Be Free Of Russia

Filed under: General — Dana @ 7:49 am



[guest post by Dana]

The New York Times shamefully indulges in false equivalency while opting not to make the distinction between aggressor and victim:

Can we at least agree that a country that has been unlawfully invaded by a thuggish neighboring nation and defends itself while trying to expel said enemy is not taking a “hard line” but is righteously fighting for survival and the right to exist as an independent nation? Can we agree that the onus for ending the war rests on the invaders and not on the victims? Given that Russia doesn’t believe in Ukraine’s right to exist as an independent, self-governing nation, it is doubtful that any meaningful negotiations can even take place. Ukraine has every reason to doubt anything Russia says about ending the war. This is not taking a hard line. This is simply a logical conclusion based on listening to Putin’s own words, observing his real-life actions, and for Ukraine, experiencing some horrific consequences. Thus the need for Ukraine’s conditions for negotiations. As an unlawful invader, it is up to Russia, at the very least, to demonstrate a good-faith effort toward ending the war. And the only thing that might convince me of their sincerity would be a complete and total withdrawal from Ukraine. And I mean all of Ukraine. That might be a starting point. Short of that, why believe anything they say?

In a nutshell:

It’s absurd. The Russian position is to invade Ukraine and kill Ukrainians. The Ukrainian position is not to be invaded and not to be murdered by Russia. Russia can create peace in an instant; Ukraine must fight for it.

Meanwhile, Russia has launched a barrage of missiles at Ukraine, with officials saying that Lviv, Kyiv, and Odesa have been hardest hit:

According to preliminary data, Ukraine’s Air Force said that Russian forces had launched 69 cruise missiles and that it had downed 54 of those, along with Ukraine’s Defense Forces. The Air Force said that it had also repelled attacks from Iranian-made Shahed drones, which are designed to explode on contact with their targets.

Earlier on Thursday, Mykhailo Podolyak, an adviser to President Volodymyr Zelensky, said in a post on Twitter that Russia had launched more than 120 missiles in the attack, without giving more details. He said the focus of the onslaught was to “destroy critical infrastructure and kill civilians en masse.”

Unsurprisingly, Putin’s foreign minister Sergey Lavrov rejected President Zelensky’s conditions, which includes a condition that Russia withdraws its troops from Ukraine, restore Ukraine’s border with Russia, and establish a tribunal to prosecute “the crime of Russian aggression”:

Ukraine must fulfill Russia’s demands for the “demilitarization and denazification” of Ukrainian-controlled territories, repeating Moscow’s well-worn and false accusation of Nazism against Ukraine, which it has used in an attempt to justify its invasion.

Lavrov also called for “the elimination of threats to Russian security from there, including our new territories” – a reference to four occupied regions of Ukraine which Russia claimed to annex illegally following sham referendums – or else the Russian military would take action, according to TASS.

“There is just one thing left to do: to fulfill them before it’s too late. Otherwise the Russian army will take matters into its own hands,” Lavrov said. “With regard to the duration of the conflict, the ball is now in the court of Washington and its regime,” he added, again referring to Ukraine as a puppet of the US.

–Dana

86 Responses to “The New York Times Is Wrong: Ukraine Is Not Taking A “Hard Line” In Their Efforts To Be Free Of Russia”

  1. Good morning.

    Dana (1225fc)

  2. Lavrov is the most undiplomatic diplomat I’ve ever seen.
    Point #5 on Zelenskyy’s 10-point is the most relevant, which is basically that Russia recognize the sovereignty of the Ukrainian state.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  3. My dad used to think the NYT should have a hammer and sickle on the masthead, so its on brand to write like this.
    Ukraine should have a series of hard lines. GTFO, leave your equipment, pay for your mess, reimburse us for grain etc you stole, don’t come back

    steveg (a4922f)

  4. They’ve been battling over that region for a thousand years:

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

    The New York Times best focus on the decline and decay of the quality of life in the city and state that’s their namesake: New York.

    Census: New York saw steepest population decline in the last year

    https://spectrumlocalnews.com/nys/central-ny/ny-state-of-politics/2022/12/22/new-york-saw-steepest-population-decline-in-the-last-year

    Quality of life plummets, taxes rocket — and New York City faces doom

    https://nypost.com/2021/04/06/quality-of-life-plummets-taxes-rocket-and-new-york-city-faces-doom-goodwin/

    ‘New York is not dead, but it is on life support’

    https://www.bbc.com/news/business-55535324

    The NYT best phone the UN. It’s a local call;

    ‘The UN Charter gives the Security Council primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security.’- un.org

    Ukraine is NOT an American problem. New York, New York is.

    DCSCA (a9b5ba)

  5. UN=Useless Negotiators

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  6. As I remember it, the Afghans did not negotiate with Russia to end their war. There was no talk about their taking a “hard line” at the time. It appears that neither the Russians nor the US learned anything worthwhile from this.

    John B Boddie (18ca17)

  7. First Javelins. Then HIMARS. Now Patriot. What’s next?
    ……..
    The continued savage, close-quarters combat in Bakhmut and increasingly static frontlines in the south and east of the country augur a war that will grind on. The U.S. and Europe already have billions more in the pipeline to keep Ukraine fighting until a path to ending the war emerges. The question for the West and Ukraine now is: What sort of end should they be aiming for, and how do we get there?

    That answer likely hinges in large part on what new weapons the U.S. and its European allies sign off on sending to Kyiv in the coming months, current and former officials say.
    ……..
    Ukraine’s leaders are arguing that longer-range missiles and modern battle tanks — the very weapons considered off-limits by many nations — are the only way to dislodge entrenched Russian positions and bring the conflict to an end. ……
    …….
    “We have to be prepared for the reality President Putin and the top leadership in the Kremlin show zero signs of diminishing their original war aims based on realities on the ground for now,” said Michael Carpenter, the U.S. ambassador to the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
    ……..
    Both sides are currently dug in on opposite sides of the Dnipro River, after Russia withdrew its forces from the southern city of Kherson this fall. In order to advance, Ukrainian troops must cross the river and take and hold territory on the other side, in what amounts to a difficult amphibious assault much like the Normandy landing in World War II, said retired Lt. Gen. Mark Hertling, former commanding general of U.S. Army Europe.
    ……..
    While (long range ATACMS missiles) remain atop Ukraine’s wish list, other weapons could help Kyiv continue its offensives around Bakhmut and in the south. Military leaders have said for months that U.S. Abrams tanks and German Leopard tanks would tip the scales in some of the closer-range ground fighting they expect to see over the winter.

    Ukrainian officials have asked the Biden administration to send just a handful of Abrams tanks — as few as three or four — to break German resistance to sending their own Leopards, according to one person familiar with the discussions. German officials have said publicly they won’t be the first country to send their own tanks to the fight, so the pitch by Kyiv is that even a small number of Abrams tanks would remove that obstacle.
    ………
    Kyiv is also calling for cluster munitions, which Russia has been using to deadly effect on the battlefield. But these weapons — officially called dual-purposed improvised conventional munitions — are banned by more than 100 countries, and there is no appetite in the Biden administration to send them. …….
    ………
    And the Biden White House has flatly refused to ATACMS because it views the weapon as too escalatory.
    ………

    The US has also restricted the HIMARs missile systems it has delivered to Ukraine so they cannot be used to fire longer range missiles into Russia proper. HIMARS have a range of 50 miles, ATACMS has a range of 190 miles.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  8. Also: Women take a hard line against rape.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  9. Kyiv is also calling for cluster munitions, which Russia has been using to deadly effect on the battlefield. But these weapons — officially called dual-purposed improvised conventional munitions — are banned by more than 100 countries, and there is no appetite in the Biden administration to send them. …….

    But WE have them, and would use them if necessary, or if an opponent had them and used them. Biden (and the Democrats generally) tunes things too finely. In this case and in several others, he prevents Ukraine from responding to Russia’s aggression in kind.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  10. Point #5 on Zelenskyy’s 10-point is the most relevant, which is basically that Russia recognize the sovereignty of the Ukrainian state.

    Again.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  11. UN=Useless Negotiators

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 12/29/2022 @ 10:22 am

    And what war has the UN ever brokered a permanent peace? Ceasefires maybe, but a ceasefire is not permanent peace.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  12. R.I.P. Pelé, soccer legend

    Icy (7a93eb)

  13. Meanwhile at the NY Times:

    The Next House Speaker Should Come From Outside the House

    Though this route might seem extreme or fanciful, it makes sense for the incoming 118th Congress. The severe partisan divisions within the next House of Representatives make it impossible to choose a member who could genuinely serve the general interest of the nation. The slim Republican majority has produced a caucus so fractious that dozens of its members opposed the election of Representative Kevin McCarthy as Republican leader in the House. At least five have pledged publicly to oppose his campaign for speakership…

    The incoming Democratic House minority of course lacks the votes to elect one of its own as speaker. The Democrats could, however, offer motions to open the possibility of selecting a speaker capable of working across the aisle. Nominating an experienced, respected Republican from outside the House could trigger a contested ballot leading to a speaker in the mold of the original constitutional conception.

    Suggested: John Kasich.

    No word about Speaker Pelosi’s own problems with “the squad” in 2021, or about how she had the SAME narrow margin at that point. Not only did the Democrats have no problem operating their contentions caucus with such a small margin, they managed to ram through several bills so partisan they received ZERO GOP votes. Then sent them off to a 50-50 Senate that acted as if it had a mandate.

    Want to get rid of partisanship? First, get rid of Trump, then the Squad, then the so-called Freedom Caucus, the Black Caucus and about half of each party. But that is a task for the VOTERS, and right now they aren’t interested.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  14. Pelé was 82. I’m feeling very old now.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  15. But WE have them, and would use them if necessary, or if an opponent had them and used them. Biden (and the Democrats generally) tunes things too finely. In this case and in several others, he prevents Ukraine from responding to Russia’s aggression in kind.

    Kevin M (1ea396) — 12/29/2022 @ 10:55 am

    I think the only circumstance we would use them again is if North Korea attacked US troops in South Korea. The US stopped using them in Afghanistan in 2002 and Iraq in 2003. Given their indiscriminate killing of civilians (sometimes long after the war has ended), they are a public relations disaster. Response shouldn’t be tit-for-tat, it should be asymmetric. In any case, Ukraine would only be able to use them on their own territory (thereby endangering their own citizens), and it is unlikely that the Ukrainian Air Force would be able to bomb Russia proper.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  16. Suggested: John Kasich.

    LOL! He would never win enough Republican votes, nor any votes from the Democrats.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  17. Want to get rid of partisanship?

    Get rid of political parties. Talk about tilting at windmills.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  18. The US stopped using them in Afghanistan in 2002 and Iraq in 2003.

    They are mostly useful for attacking military bases, and particularly air bases, neither of which applied in those cases. We have many in stock and probably make more as they age.

    But OK, something else. But right now the Ukrainians are forced to tolerate attacks from sanctuaries, with weapons that are beyond the pale. Their cities freeze in the wint3er while Russian towns right across the border are doing just fine.

    The Russians are fine-tuning their attacks to areas where we are afraid to allow a response. This will get worse.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  19. Get rid of political parties. Talk about tilting at windmills.

    Divide up legislative districts so that 3 legislators are elected from each, with voters getting to choose only one. That kills first-past-the-post AND gerrymanders, and results in minority voices.

    Parties would still exist, but be much weaker.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  20. The New York Times shamefully indulges in false equivalency while opting not to make the distinction between aggressor and victim

    I think it’s fair to note that not all of the anti-Ukraine sentiment comes from the Trumpian Right.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  21. We have many in stock and probably make more as they age.

    United States defense contractor Northrop Grumman announced this week it is ending participation in a US government contract to test the shelf life of stocks of cluster munitions. It inherited the stockpile management contract after acquiring US company Orbital ATK.
    ……..
    The last US manufacturer of cluster munitions, Textron Systems Corporation, ended its production of the weapons in 2016 after the US stopped sales to Saudi Arabia over concern of civilian harm in Yemen. The last US use of cluster munitions was in Iraq in 2003, with the exception of a single attack in Yemen in December 2009. According to a 2017 Department of Defense letter, the US has destroyed approximately 3.7 million cluster munitions, containing 406.7 million submunitions, from its stocks since 2008.
    ……..

    Source

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  22. Chink’s melting down and spreading their man made virus to the rest of the world again while Biden refuses to ban travel from there and is allowing a mass8ve invasion on oir southern border.

    Priorities.

    NJRob (3bd207)

  23. Can we at least agree that a country that has been unlawfully invaded by a thuggish neighboring nation and defends itself while trying to expel said enemy is not taking a “hard line” but is righteously fighting for survival and the right to exist as an independent nation?

    It’s doing that, and more. It’s asking , at least at this point, for Russia to put Putin on trial (with the opportunity to defend himself) and it’s asking for reparations. It’s terms are possibly harsher than those of Britain and France in 1916.

    At about the same time, United States president Woodrow Wilson came up with his “Fourteen points”

    https://www.theworldwar.org/learn/peace/fourteen-points

    It included

    6. Evacuation of all Central Powers from Russia and allow it to define its own independence

    7. Belgium to be evacuated and restored

    8. Return of Alsace-Lorraine region and all French territories

    and boundary changes he was persuaded were logical

    But it did not include trials, abdications and reparations.

    So by that standard it’s harsh.

    United States policy now really is Russia should pay damages, and Biden would like to get rid of Putin (he said so!) but has no confidence in the ability of anyone who is not a Russian insider to do so.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  24. Rip Murdock (d2a2a8) — 12/29/2022 @ 11:46 am

    I stand corrected. They did stop making them, and it seems they destroy them as they age. Still, I expect that there will be some minimum number they maintain, and more will be made in the future to accomplish that.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  25. https://millercenter.org/secret-diplomacy-failure-1916

    Philip Zelikow’s latest book is The Road Less Traveled: The Secret Battle to End the Great War, 1916-1917.

    It wasn’t called the Great War at the time. I saw a math book from 1931 when I was in the 3rd grade (they replaced it that year with the Growth Slowth in Arithmetic series) and on one page it called it the “Great War” so that’s what I thought World War I was called between World War I and World War II – or at least 1938, as I later learned, but that was mainly wrong.

    It was called the “European War” It remained that way for many many years in publications with a tradition. The 1952 Encyclopedia Americana had “War, European” and the Reader’s Guide to Periodical Literature called it the European War all the way until 1976!

    The name “the Great War” to indicate what it was called at the time has been revived in the last decade or two.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  26. China’s*

    NJRob (3bd207)

  27. @23: Wilson’s points were largely ignored. In the end, the Versailles treaty DID include abdications, and reparations were so significant that they bankrupted Germany, destroyed the economy, and allowed a revolutionary change in government there.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  28. This is the full article:

    http://historynewsnetwork.org/article/179515

    It’s not very specific – and you don’t know what bad things could have happened that way. Peace anyway still rested on Germany being willing to give up.

    One Amazon.com review recommends another book for a more in depth look

    Plotting for Peace: American Peacemakers, British Codebreakers, and Britain at War, 1914–1917 by Daniel Larsen.

    Of course you’ve got to deal with divisions within Germany, and would some other sort of peace have created a bad precedent. But the way things went in the end can’t be very good. (there were a lot of turning points along the way, though)

    One review of the second book says “the biggest criticism though was that it very much nailed it’s colours to Asquith and Lloyd George was much maligned without much evidence. His position was rarely explored.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  29. @23: Kevin M (1ea396) — 12/29/2022 @ 12:15 pm

    Wilson’s points were largely ignored. In the end, the Versailles treaty DID include abdications,

    The abdications happened before the Armistice of November 11, 1918.

    The treaty did not guarantee democracy, and in the 1930s (because of this non-intervention in internal affairs dogma inherited from the end, of the Napoleonic wars) the democracies failed to understand the importance of democracy or, at least, the absence of 1-man rule.

    You could maintain peace on the balance of deterrence or you could maintain the peace on the basis of the nature of the government which might be an adversary, but you could not live with the absence of both.

    In the case of the Ukrainian war, reparations are not really a sticking point, (there could be an agreement on limiting it to some portion of the frozen Russian assets) but creating a process for putting someone on trial for starting the war could be — but might be made irrelevant by events.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  30. creating a process for putting someone on trial for starting the war

    We have that now. Just ask Milosevic.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  31. and reparations were so significant that they bankrupted Germany, destroyed the economy,

    They didn;t really. The hyeerinflation was caused by some well placed people, like Hugo Stinnes, borrowing German marks and then selling them on the foreign exchange market, and in any case were reduced and removed. It was believed, after World War II that reparations were impossible to pay. (and the Allied countries couldn’t pay their war debt to the United States)

    The destruction of the economy was caused by the United States stock market crash, because the value of stock had been treated as money and the money supply was slowly shrinking all over the world.

    and allowed a revolutionary change in government there.

    Lies caused that, and a badly written constitution. The Nazis lost election after election but they only had to win a plurality once.

    This is one reason that Senator John McCain was against delegating emergency powers to anyone. In a real emergency they’d just violate the constitution a little, like Lincoln, but it shouldn’t be written down and if it wasn’t authorized people would rarely dare to go further than really necessary.

    (In the United States these days, all emergency powers are reserved to the states and, in many cases, delegated to the Governor, which is a good system Not I mean delegating it to the Governor alone, but reserving it to the states.)

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  32. creating a process for putting someone on trial for starting the war

    Kevin M (1ea396) — 12/29/2022 @ 12:45 pm

    We have that now. Just ask Milosevic.

    But somebody’s got tio turn Putin (or anyone else) over to the tribunal.

    Ukraine, at this point, is asking for Russia to set up a system

    In the case of Milosevic:

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2001/jun/29/warcrimes.guardianleaders

    Thu 28 Jun 2001 21.59 EDT

    The extradition of Slobodan Milosevic to the international war crimes tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in the Hague marks the final conclusion, in one sense at least, of the people’s revolution that dramatically overthrew the Yugoslav dictator last autumn. In nine frenetic months, Milosevic has gone from being the feared overlord of Europe’s last quasi-totalitarian regime to a prisoner, first in his own country, and now in the hands of UN.

    …That the extradition, expected for many months, came so swiftly was due to the concerted pressure placed on Milosevic’s successors, the government led by President Vojislav Kostunica, by the Clinton administration and subsequently by the government of George Bush. The Americans were adamant that putting Milosevic on trial inside Serbia was no solution. To the argument that the dictator should be made to answer for his crimes before a court comprising his own people, the reply was that Milosevic’s crimes truly did constitute crimes against all humanity, as the Hague indictments state. His offence was international and so, therefore, must be the remedy. To his credit, former Foreign Secretary Robin Cook took a similar view. Mr Kostunica, despite coming to power on a tide of pop ular revolt, opposed the extradition.

    That this challenge appears to have been successful is due to two key factors. One is the US threat to withhold its share of up to $1bn in aid that Serbia hopes to obtain at a donors’ conference in Brussels today. Much of the damage caused to the country’s infrastructure is far from being put right. And not until it is, and prosperity begins to return to the majority of Serbia’s people, will the restoration of democratic institutions be assured.

    The second factor is the shift in public mood in Serbia since last autumn’s revolution. With gathering speed in recent weeks, especially after Milosevic’s arrest, the Serbian public has been exposed to more and more horrifying, and incontrovertible evidence of the crimes of Milosevic and his henchmen. For a country so long in denial, there was, suddenly, no way to deny it any more. The idea that the stories of killing and mayhem, in Srebrenica and Gorazde and Kosovo, were western propaganda was no longer tenable.

    The bottom lie is, though, Milosevic had to lose power.

    But the war ended without that.

    The final straw probably was the United States bombing the Chinese embassy in Belgrade.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  33. NJRob (3bd207) — 12/29/2022 @ 12:05 pm

    Chink’s melting down and spreading their man made virus to the rest of the world again

    I think there could be two reasons for that.

    1. Xi wants to show his people that they were wrong in demanding the end of the lockdowns.

    2. (In case there are new variants) Xi wants to be able to argue that they originated outside of China – so if there’s any new variant, he’s got to get it out there.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  34. @5. As opposed to the USA? =eyeroll= How’s that formal end of the Korean War going for you? Forgot how tranquil the Mideast is after billions of bucks blown there and millions of people blown up; or how Yankee Doodle Dandy Afghanistan is after two decades of Mighty Mouse there to save the day… or how tranquil Vietnam became was when the USA negotiated ‘Peace With Honor.’

    Get a grip: Follw the U.N. charter: The United States is NOT the world’s policeman. Especially now it is a debt ridden and inflation riddled power in decline.

    DCSCA (f286dd)

  35. The Ukies will never ‘be free of Russia.’ Aside from sharing basic geographic borders, they speak Russian in Ukraine. Language ties nations, beyond any politics of the day. Next to all humans breathing the same air, it is language that is a hard link to ignore or break. America’s dominant language is English and is closest w/t UK, Australia, Canada- even Ireland.

    DCSCA (bd5c28)

  36. Two-thirds of Ukrainians speak Ukrainian, not Russian, as a first language.
    Zelenskyy’s native tongue is Russian, but he bleeds blue and gold.

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  37. @5. As opposed to the USA?

    The US shouldn’t be involved either. Speaking of corruption, why suggest the UN? It’s one of the most corrupt international organizations around. Peace in Ukraine is between Ukraine and Russia, and it will only happen when one side achieves a decisive victory or is too tired to continue.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  38. US Weighs Sending Bradley Fighting Vehicles to Bolster Ukraine
    ……..
    “Bradleys would provide a major increase in ground combat capability because it is, in effect, a light tank,” said Mark Cancian, a former White House defense budget analyst who’s now with the Center for Strategic and International Studies. “Unlike the previously provided M113s, the Bradley is heavily armed with a powerful 25mm gun and TOW anti-tank missiles. The United States has many Bradleys, though some are older and need upgrades, so inventories are not a problem.”
    ……..
    “The Bradley would be a significant improvement over current Ukrainian fighting vehicles,” said David Perkins, a retired four-star general who as a brigade commander sent tanks into downtown Baghdad during the US invasion of Iraq and later headed the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command. He said in his experience the Bradley is “more than a match” for Russia’s infantry fighting vehicles and its T—72 tanks.
    ……..

    Just. Do. It.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  39. Can we at least agree that a country that has been unlawfully invaded by a thuggish neighboring nation and defends itself while trying to expel said enemy is not taking a “hard line” but is righteously fighting for survival and the right to exist as an independent nation?

    I don’t read “hard line” as pejoratively as you do. To me, “hard line” indicates intensity and inflexibility, not lack of virtue. I strongly support Ukraine’s righteous defense against an unprovoked genocidal invasion, I believe Putin’s Russia is an unmitigated evil, and I consider my positions in those regards hard line.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  40. The bottom line is, though, Milosevic had to lose power.

    Putin cannot hold power if he loses.

    Kevin M (1ea396)

  41. Second Russian Defense Sector Bigwig Dies in Two Days

    The former commander-in-chief of Russia’s ground forces died in a military hospital earlier this week—the second bigwig in the country’s military industrial complex to die in just two days.
    ………
    Alexei Maslov, a retired army general, was serving as a special representative of military-technical cooperation for Uralvagonzavod, Russia’s largest tank manufacturer, when he died “unexpectedly” last Saturday, the company announced in a statement.

    No cause of death was given.

    Maslov, who was appointed as Russia’s military representative to NATO in 2008, died just two days after Vladimir Putin abruptly canceled his first visit to Uralvagonzavod since 2019.

    The Russian leader was expected to fly into Yekaterinburg last week before heading to Nizhny Tagil to meet with staffers at the tank factory, where workers have been enduring 12-hour days, six days a week due to fulfill orders for the war against Ukraine.
    ………
    Maslov’s death came just a day after Alexander Buzakov, the director general of Admiralty Shipyards, died suddenly and “tragically” from unknown causes.
    ………

    Getting out while they have the chance. Sad!

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  42. Getting out while they have the chance. Sad!

    Clearing the board. In the game of borscht, no one holding a spoon is safe.

    nk (179a3b)

  43. why suggest the UN

    Why?? Read the UN Charter. The responsibility is in the first para.

    DCSCA (bd5c28)

  44. Peace in Ukraine is between Ukraine and Russia, and it will only happen when one side achieves a decisive victory or is too tired to continue.

    The only ‘winner’ in this- as w/Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, Vietnam, the Cold War and Korea… is the MIC, Rip.

    … and Raytheon smiled.

    DCSCA (bd5c28)

  45. Vladimir Putin cancels second trip in week fuelling more health rumours

    Vladimir Putin for the second time in a week cancelled at the last minute a trip inside Russia.

    He today abandoned a visit to Pskov close to his border with NATO states Estonia and Latvia.
    ………
    Officially the reason was “unfavourable flying conditions” for the 180 mile routing from St Petersburg.

    Yet both airports remained open to incoming and departing flights.

    Pictures of Pskov showed clear skies.
    ……..
    Putin has also cancelled his usual appearance at an end of year meeting of his government ministers, scheduled for today, and an annual ice hockey match.

    And he refused to go-ahead with his traditional December press conference, which often lasted four hours or more.

    Nor did he make an expected annual address this month to the Federal Assembly.
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  46. The only ‘winner’ in this-……is the MIC, Rip.

    I have no problem with that.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  47. Putin cannot hold power if he loses.

    He has already lost. He’ll be going the way of Khrushchev soon enough. When messages marked/signed/okayed start coming out of ‘the Kremlin’ and not from Putin direct, it’s a major tell.

    _________

    @41. If only the JSC and the DoD being held to a similar, Patton-level job performance level.

    “You’re now commanding officer. You’ve got 4 hours to break through to that beachhead.
    If you don’t make it, I’ll fire you!” – G.S. Patton [George C. SCott] ‘Patton’ 1970

    DCSCA (bd5c28)

  48. @46. Eisenhower did.

    DCSCA (bd5c28)

  49. I don’t read “hard line” as pejoratively as you do. To me, “hard line” indicates intensity and inflexibility, not lack of virtue. I strongly support Ukraine’s righteous defense against an unprovoked genocidal invasion, I believe Putin’s Russia is an unmitigated evil, and I consider my positions in those regards hard line.
    lurker (cd7cd4) — 12/29/2022 @ 2:58 pm

    Bold & em, mine.

    You make a good point which further reinforces Dana’s point about the false equivalency of the NYT’s characterization that Russia’s position has virtue as well. I would have the Times characterization employ terms that contrast the combatants position – while both being entrenched, only one entrenched within a moral ground.

    felipe (484255)

  50. DCSCA (bd5c28) — 12/29/2022 @ 3:39 pm

    {Putin] will be going the way of Khrushchev soon enough.

    Unlike Khrushchev (or Mussolini in 1943) there is no body with the technical power to remove him, I think (The Fascist Grand Council or the Communist Party Politburo)

    When messages marked/signed/okayed start coming out of ‘the Kremlin’ and not from Putin direct, it’s a major tell.

    It can’t come with much of warning, or Putin himself would know. Maybe only a few hours or a close call for Putin.

    It might be easier for the CCP to remove Xi. I mean he seems to have deliberately infected people with serious cases of Covid and raised the crude death rate 10 or 15 times just to punish people for getting him to lift the lockdowns. He wants them to feel that was wrong.

    The censors don’t know what to allow and what to stop.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2022/12/22/business/china-covid-censorship-propaganda.html

    Since China dropped its strict “zero Covid” policy, a joke has been making the rounds on social media about the sudden shift.

    Three men who don’t know one another sit in a prison cell. Each explains why he was arrested:

    “I opposed Covid testing.”
    “I supported Covid testing.”
    “I conducted Covid testing.”

    The joke has yet to be broadly censored.

    (This is really a Russian joke from Communist days)

    They have always been at war with Euroasia

    There’s something else I saw: Something about a persons
    s post widely circulating blaming the protesters for Covid. I’ll try to find it again later.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  51. Merry Christmas everyone! I’ve been ill, but better now. Thanks be to G*D for His love and mercy.

    felipe (484255)

  52. DCSCA (bd5c28) — 12/29/2022 @ 2:34 pm

    America’s dominant language is English and is closest w/t UK, Australia, Canada- even Ireland.

    yes, bit that doesn’t prevet political division, even if temporary. 1775-1781, 1812-1815 and even 1861-1865. Not to mention the “troubles” in northern Ireland.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  53. @51. Indeed. Mend, be well and look to the New Year. At our age, every day is a gift.

    DCSCA (82accf)

  54. @46. Eisenhower did.

    So what?

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  55. If we could ignore President Washington on avoiding “foreign entanglements” (something I sure you agree with), we can ignore Eisenhower on the military-industrial complex.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  56. @51. Glad you’re better. Keep it up.

    lurker (cd7cd4)

  57. Russian milbloggers are not happy:

    Several prominent Russian milbloggers latched onto the Russian MoD report on the incident(of the Ukraine drone attack on Engels Airbase) as an opportunity to criticize domestic Russian air defense capabilities and question Russian authorities’ handling of and response to reported Ukrainian strikes deep in the Russian rear. One Wagner Group-affiliated milblogger questioned why Russian air defense only “miraculously” prevents strikes “exactly above the airfield/military unit” and noted that the Engels airfield is 500km into Russian territory. Former militant commander and prominent Russian milblogger Igor Girkin sarcastically congratulated Russian air defense for activating before striking the airbase and questioned why Russia is allowing Ukrainian drones so deep into its territory. Several Russian milbloggers also criticized the technical capabilities of Russian air defense and electronic warfare systems and voiced their concern over Russian authorities’ inability to protect critical Russian infrastructure. …….

    Source

    And

    ……..The United Kingdom Ministry of Defense (MoD) stated on December 29 that it is “increasingly clear” that Russia “is struggling to counter air threats deep inside [its territory].” The United Kingdom MoD assessed that Russian air defenses probably are struggling to meet the high demand for air defense for field headquarters near the front line in Ukraine while also protecting strategic sites, such as Engels Airbase. ……. A prominent Russian milblogger questioned how Ukrainian UAVs and missiles cross such distances and enter Russian territory with “such impunity” and questioned the honesty of the Russian Ministry of Defense’s response. The milblogger joked that an undetected pilot landing in Red Square (referencing Matias Rust’s 1987 flight from Helsinki to Moscow) would certainly generate a response longer than a single sentence from the Russian government. …….

    Footnotes omitted.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  58. President Joe Biden signs $1.7 trillion bill funding government operations

    ‘KINGSHILL, U.S. Virgin Islands (AP) — President Joe Biden on Thursday signed a $1.7 trillion spending bill that will keep the federal government operating through the end of the federal budget year in September 2023 and provide tens of billions of dollars in new aid to Ukraine for its fight against the Russian military. Biden had until late Friday to sign the bill to avoid a partial government shutdown.

    The Democratic-controlled House passed the bill 225-201, mostly along party lines, just before Christmas. The House vote came a day after the Senate, also led by Democrats, voted 68-29 to pass the bill with significantly more Republican support.

    The massive bill, which topped out at more than 4,000 pages, wraps together 12 appropriations bills, aid to Ukraine and disaster relief for communities recovering from natural disasters. It also contains scores of policy changes that lawmakers worked to include in the final major bill considered by that session of Congress.’ – USAToday.com

    As thousands of illegals swarm into America souther border, this brain-damaged bum and the rodents in Congress freely fork over billions of borrowed bucks too non-taxpayers in one of the most corrupt countries in Europe next to Russia itself. And none of these bastards read the bill- which is their job. These two parties, led by America’s tre enemies, these Walking Dead, are destroying the country’s future. Castles have been stormed for less.

    DCSCA (775e49)

  59. @54. So he knew better than you.

    DCSCA (775e49)

  60. @54. So he knew better than you.

    DCSCA (775e49) — 12/29/2022 @ 5:34 pm

    Again, so what?

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  61. No one, including Presidents Washington or Eisenhower, are infallible. They were just expressing their opinions, not setting the gospel.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  62. I’m glad you’re feeling better, felipe. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

    Dana (1225fc)

  63. @60. Again, so he knew better than you.

    And if you question the judgment of the informed, in-the-loop, experienced knowledge base the 34th president of the United States, elected twice, from 1953 to 1961. Who, during World War II, served as Supreme Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force in Europe, was victorious and achieved the five-star rank of General of the Army… it speaks volumes… about your sense of vigilance and oversight. You might want to read up on the Truman Committee, too. A 21st century version is sorely needed today.

    President Eisenhower warns of military-industrial complex

    ‘On January 17, 1961, Dwight D. Eisenhower ends his presidential term by warning the nation about the increasing power of the military-industrial complex.

    His remarks, issued during a televised farewell address to the American people, were particularly significant since Ike had famously served the nation as military commander of the Allied forces during WWII. Eisenhower urged his successors to strike a balance between a strong national defense and diplomacy in dealing with the Soviet Union. He did not suggest arms reduction and in fact acknowledged that the bomb was an effective deterrent to nuclear war. However, cognizant that America’s peacetime defense policy had changed drastically since his military career, Eisenhower expressed concerns about the growing influence of what he termed the military-industrial complex.

    Before and during the Second World War, American industries had successfully converted to defense production as the crisis demanded, but out of the war, what Eisenhower called a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions emerged. This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience Eisenhower warned, “[while] we recognize the imperative need for this development…We must not fail to comprehend its grave implications we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence…The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist.” Eisenhower cautioned that the federal government’s collaboration with an alliance of military and industrial leaders, though necessary, was vulnerable to abuse of power. Ike then counseled American citizens to be vigilant in monitoring the military-industrial complex.’ Ike also recommended restraint in consumer habits, particularly with regard to the environment. “As we peer into society’s future, we–you and I, and our government–must avoid the impulse to live only for today, plundering, for our own ease and convenience, the precious resources of tomorrow,” he said. “We cannot mortgage the material assets of our grandchildren without asking the loss also of their political and spiritual heritage.” –
    source, https://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/eisenhower-warns-of-military-industrial-complex

    DCSCA (775e49)

  64. You make a good point which further reinforces Dana’s point about the false equivalency of the NYT’s characterization that Russia’s position has virtue as well. I would have the Times characterization employ terms that contrast the combatants position – while both being entrenched, only one entrenched within a moral ground.

    felipe (484255) — 12/29/2022 @ 4:05 pm

    The titles in the tweets simply say that both sides have a position the other won’t accept. That’s not a false equivalency.

    I disagree that this is anti-UKR as others have mentioned. I’d read hard line as a good thing in the case of UKR and bad in the case of RU. Personally, I’m against a cease fire or a quickly implemented “peace” agreement so I’d tend to read “neither side can agree” as a good thing but that really depends on the details.

    Do we really need that predigested to the point that any comment that doesn’t clearly and completely denounce the side we disagree with as automatically promoting them? Is that virtue signaling necessary?

    frosty (ccad4c)

  65. DCSCA (775e49) — 12/29/2022 @ 6:11 pm

    Whatever. Obviously we didn’t listen.

    Rip Murdock (e6d601)

  66. I personally don’t see the “MIC” as a problem.

    Rip Murdock (e6d601)

  67. Tilting at windmills.

    Rip Murdock (e6d601)

  68. Julia Davis tweets that the NYT’s comment is similar to what the Kremlin is saying:

    Kremlin says Ukraine’s unreasonable demand of not being occupied by Russia prevents peace talks from taking place

    What a coincidence.

    Dana (1225fc)

  69. I’m sure they can redeem themselves and we’ll see them quoted favorably again soon. They’ll publish something critical of a random R or something on narrative about the border and all will be forgotten.

    frosty (ccad4c)

  70. @66. Start.

    Because it is a major problem, particularly when it comes to costing out waste, non-essential systems and procuring overly elaborate equipment purposely designed to be too expensive to lose yet inevitably is in combat.

    DCSCA (c2bcdd)

  71. The Russian talk of peace must have been done in the hopes of leaving Ukraine and its western allies less prepared for the barrage that just came now.

    Sammy Finkelman (b434ee)

  72. I have forgotten the military jargon (if I knew it in the first place), but Soviet Doctrine does not allow for Pattons and Rommels. No flexibility for field commanders to adjust to changing battlefield situations.

    The Schrecklichkeit against Ukrainian civilian targets was set into place some time ago as part of the Russian strategy, and the air bases are ending out the bombers, missiles and drones according to schedule until they get different orders from Vladimir Central.

    nk (bb1548)

  73. Breaking-

    The FBI has arrested a suspect in the Idaho college student murders.

    Rip Murdock (0a5177)

  74. It’s right to worry about the Military Industrial Complex. It’s wrong that our poster who rants about “Corrupt Ukraine” uses this issue as a proxy for his usual let Putin conquer the world without consequences stance.

    Appalled (b1ed35)

  75. Sounds like isolationism, smells like borscht.

    nk (bb1548)

  76. I think there is a difference between a “hardline” (maximalist) position v. “unreasonable”. Points 1-7, 8, and 9 of Ukraine’s peace formula are not unreasonable (but maximalist), but “countering ecocide” (point 8)? Really?

    And war crime trials are unlikely without Russia’s cooperation. Does the West plan to continue fighting just on that point? At best it could continue sanctions, but then we run the risk of Russian political instability (a la post-World War I Germany) and an even more revanchist Russia. As nuclear power, they do have the ultimate trump card.

    In the end there will be a negotiation. Ukraine is riding high with military victories and iron-clad Western support. But what happens when things go south if the Russia’s next offensive is successful?

    Rip Murdock (0a5177)

  77. It’s hard to believe any conservative would turn to the UN for anything.

    Rip Murdock (0a5177)

  78. It’s right to worry about the Military Industrial Complex.

    We’re long past that point. We should have thought about that in the 1960s. The government has turned over large swaths of responsibility to defense companies, everything from providing security, transportation, and supply chain management to feeding the troops.

    That ship sailed a long time ago.

    Rip Murdock (0a5177)

  79. I would like, just one time, for those that bellyache about the Military Industrial Complex, to propose an alternative to our current public/private system. If it’s simply a question of how much we spend on the DoD, then what is the appropriate dollar amount and what is the implication on strategic defense goals and maintaining an industrial base that can supply the weapons that we need? How much should we spend on cyber Research and Development and countering the threat of Chinese hyper-sonic missiles? How much dual-use and spin-off technology should be sacrificed at the altar of isolationism?

    It is true that new weapons systems are expensive…that engineering these systems is uncertain, especially when a large technological jump is taken. Some systems flop in their impact. The political/economic acquisition system is imperfect, yet how else do we look out 20 years and chart a course to get there? I don’t trust people who superficially address these issues…that just are looking for dollars for medicare for all or ill-thought-through renewable energy projects.

    It’s also hard to take serious MIC critiques from people who have thrown up every conceivable excuse for abandoning Ukraine and rationalizing Russia’s belligerence. It just falls in the category of more propaganda. It gets a little boring. The fact of the matter is that most of the 2-3M military and DoD civilians that constitute the MIC are middle-class Americans, driven by patriotism….not greed. If you dont want to pay them first, just say that…..

    AJ_Liberty (811aff)

  80. @79. Pfft; what are you afraid of?

    Pentagon fails 5th annual audit in a row

    https://americanmilitarynews.com/2022/11/pentagon-fails-5th-annual-audit-in-a-row-what-you-should-know/

    “New” systems aren’t necessarily needed [ask a B-52 driver] and don’t have to be expensive- as even a basic budget comparisons to other nations shows. Particularly as combat weapons are meant to be designed and procured to be acceptable, affordable losses for a given economy, as in WW2.

    You best revisit Ike’s MIC warning– and bone up on the Truman Committee:

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

    Anybody who defends the MIC today is suspect on motive alone. And if you revisit McNamara’s pruning of LeMay’s massively wasteful and costly habits, you’ll learn why vigilance over the MIC is essential. $15 billion carriers capable of being sunk by $2 million Exocet missiles are make-work projects for the MIC, not smart military planning and procurement. $2 billion bombers and billion dollar fighter planes too expensive to lose aren’t either. Especially when they’re useless battling a viral attack from an adversary using a ten dollar thumb drive loaded w/a bug. Defenders of the MIC are immediately and rightly suspect– and require a modern ‘Truman Committee’ tail-grabbing their asses daily.

    It’s also hard to take serious MIC critiques from people who have thrown up every conceivable excuse for abandoning Ukraine and rationalizing Russia’s belligerence.

    ROFLMAO. What a load of buttinski:

    1. You aren’t abandoning something that IS NOT YOURS nor YOUR BUSINESS to begin with.

    2. Read the UN Charter. The United States is NOT the world’s policeman.

    DCSCA (babecd)

  81. The United Nations is useless for that purpose.

    Sammy Finkelman (1d215a)

  82. Here’s a relevant part of the UN Charter.

    “Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security. Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self-defence shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council under the present Charter to take at any time such action as it deems necessary in order to maintain or restore international peace and security.”

    Paul Montagu (8f0dc7)

  83. If it’s simply a question of how much we spend on the DoD, then what is the appropriate dollar amount and what is the implication on strategic defense goals and maintaining an industrial base that can supply the weapons that we need?

    If the $100b we’re putting into UKR works to stop RU then I’d start with $400b, or roughly half of our current budget. We should have cut the budget after seeing the poor RU performance in GE.

    How much dual-use and spin-off technology should be sacrificed at the altar of isolationism?

    Imagining that not spending $400b automatically sacrifices anything rests on a bit of speculation. It’s not like that money is wasted. How much dual-use and spin-off was created by the money spent on the Zumwalt class destroyers that generally failed to meet expectations.

    And why do you imagine that this is purely isolationist? If it’s ok to send money to the DoD hoping you’ll get dual-use and spin-off where do you land on sanctions against China meant to maintain our industrial base? There’s a lot of ways to fight the Chinese and most of them aren’t via the military. But oddly, I keep seeing people dismiss those while supporting military options that aren’t serious.

    frosty (988f70)

  84. Nice formatting!

    “then I’d start with $400b, or roughly half of our current budget.”
    OK, that’s a number but it doesn’t explain what capability and what presence are lost to get there. I probably agree that something on that level should be the long-term goal. It’s the only way that we get to fiscal sanity. But we have to be transparent as to what goes away, what bases are closed, and that the Chinese will likely overtake us in some technology arenas, particularly missiles and AI.

    “How much dual-use and spin-off was created by the money spent on the Zumwalt class destroyers”
    My argument isn’t that every new platform creates dual-use or spin-off technology, but many do. And the R&D is done by Americans. If you shutdown military R&D, you lose more than just a weapon system. The Zumwalt pushed the boundaries on naval architecture and materials, integrated power systems, sensors, and weapons. The Zumwalt class was a lesson in pushing too much new technology in one platform. When the railgun technology underperformed and its guided munitions ended up costing too much, it doomed its role in the fleet. Is the solution closing Bath Iron Works and never building a surface combatant again? And when the Arleigh Burke’s reach end-of-life, what do you do then? You certainly have to learn from development and acquisition mistakes, but you shouldn’t make rash over-corrections. Projecting what platform is required over a 30-year life cycle is challenging, as the world and its threats are dynamically changing. It’s also important to understand that if we stop producing platform “x”, that industrial base reallocates to something new and we lose considerable domain expertise…which then costs even more to reconstitute it when you actually need it. That’s why we need really smart forward-thinking people in charge…and not just hip-shooters.

    AJ_Liberty (5f05c3)

  85. 84,

    The CN budget is an estimated ~$200b. If you’re assuming they will overtake us in multiple fields when we’re spending twice as much then money doesn’t seem to be the primary issue.

    They’re already working on the flight III and there wasn’t anything special about the Zumwalts that gave us advances in sensors, power, materials, etc. All of that technology runs on separate tracks.

    Spending money on military R&D isn’t the only way to push boundaries and make advances and not everything has to involve such extremes. Why when I criticize the Zumwalt am I automatically making rash over corrections or suggesting something like shutting down Bath or reallocating entire industrial bases?

    Even if I were suggesting we shut down entire fields of research we already do that just by the nature of prioritizing some areas over others.

    frosty (ccad4c)

  86. “They’re already working on the flight III and there wasn’t anything special about the Zumwalts that gave us advances in sensors, power, materials, etc”

    I would encourage you to google and read a bit about the ship and the innovations.

    AJ_Liberty (811aff)


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