Tuesday, March 01, 2022

The Map Tells the Story

Just a quick note today as the paying gig is only letting me pop in and out of my alter ego's life.

A friend posted the below from Janes' this AM from behind their paywall.

I've had some well informed readers reach out to me after I posted it over on twitter to ask, roughly, "But I keep seeing how the Russians are screwing up the basics of fuel, food, bad comms and chaos."

Well, yes - that is all true. I am also sure that this is not going as smooth as the Russian General Staff briefed Putin how things would go.

The fact remains though that the Russians are making gains. Slower and uglier than they thought, but they are making gains. 

The Ukrainians are putting up a plucky fight with what they have, but it is not enough at this point to slow the flow of Russians in to the center of their country. Like a Hawaiian volcano slowly swallowing a house, it is all there to see in the open.

As Russians do, they make up for lack in attention to detail with simple mass. There are no off ramps for Putin. As long as he is in power, he will do what he needs to do to achieve his end state.

Ukraine and the West did not do what they needed pre-conflict to make this an unattractive effort. 

Sure, now that the tanks are rolling, the right things are being done, but it is just too late. There were warnings, but no one would listen.

In plain sight the Russians showed what they were planning to do - but the decision makers in Kyiv, DC, Brussels, and various European capitals refused to believe what could happen.

The West is about a year late in giving the Ukrainians the edge they needed to make the invasion calculus such that the Russians wouldn't give it a go, and if they did, blunt that mass the Russians could throw in to the war. The West's politicians, self-preening in their anti-military, green-Gaia worshiping world views, did not signal strength. The grasping and greedy mercantilists were not done extracting more wealth for themselves and their WEF-Davos-Great-Reset fantasies. The press - wanting to join the political fray and leach off the wealth, did little.

The Ukrainians are not blameless. After 2014, efforts were made, but they were an economy of force measure by the Ukrainians and the well meaning nations tried to help ... but it was not enough.

The usual suspects in the Western nomenklatura's Smartest People in the Room™ set refused to convince the Ukrainians to get a larger military faster and are to blame more than anyone else. Their world view and concepts of power are poorly rooted in history or practice. Again, it is all clear to see now for those who did not believe before.

Instead of elevating the Ukrainian President to build civil society, they invited Greta Thunberg to yell at them.

They never appreciated what the Russians COULD do, so they refused to see what they were building up forces TO do.

As a result we are here, either on the brink of a war everyone may lose control of, or we will watch a slow, sloppy, and ugly land grab by the Russians that in the end will only encourage more aggression and land grabs - both in Europe and elsewhere. There is an outside chance that a tide might turn towards a happier place, but that is not the smart bet right now. We'll see in a week.

As for now via the BBC, there is the Russian Army, in the Kyiv suburbs.

Oh, and the economic impact of all this elite failure? Just watch, it's on the way.

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