WORDS: 1,563 — Yeah.. no one wants to even imagine that, but the Russian war in Ukraine is revealing some real politically unstable circumstances that call into question a really unknown future. Is there a way to avoid all this? Perhaps more to the greater point, is there any way we can avoid what happens after Ukraine (assuming there is an “after”)?
Ukraine, and the world in general, would be best served if Putin himself simply were removed from leading all this by his own people. Maybe his military leadership will still take some action to remove him from power. One might assume that the various hot lines between the superpower militaries could be an avenue to promote some ultimate coup with the support of the West’s intel communities. But that’s just armchair hope and speculation. The reality much more suggests this will plod along with death and destruction, and a greater international fear that renegade Putin will carry this forward in the weeks and months to come beyond Ukraine’s borders.
In a recent post I indicated my perception that the longer goal in all this is less about saving Ukraine and far more about removing Putin… purely because he is fully expected to go beyond Ukraine’s borders once he thinks Ukraine is out of the way. If the West attempts anything to contain him, well, consider Putin’s recent remarks a reported by CNN HERE….
Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Saturday that the sanctions introduced on his country are “equivalent of a declaration of war.”
So do we assume from that remark that since the West’s sanctions are now in effect that we are all now at war with Putin’s Russia? If we are in a defacto state of war with that clown, does that mean he will make good on his threat that he’s made HERE…
“Top officials in leading NATO countries have allowed themselves to make aggressive comments about our country, therefore I hereby order the Minister of Defense and the chief of the General Staff to place the Russian Army Deterrence Force on combat alert,” Putin said in a televised meeting with top Russian defense officials on Sunday.
His “Russian Army Deterrence Force” are his nuclear forces, btw. Is Putin serious with his threats? Given his abhorrent behavior, to suggest he would do it, we need to consider that he actually might do it… and as a response, we will do it right back at him. If someone believes a threat can occur then that threat becomes the fear to avoid. Suddenly we, the nations of the West and NATO, are boxed in as to what degree we can respond to Putin’s aggression if we want to avoid the Apocalypse. This forces us, the good guys, to let Putin have Ukraine. As to whether or not the Ukraine becomes the fruitless historical struggle Afghanistan was to the Russians (and us) will take months or years is unknown. As for those sanctions… that could take months, if not years to eat away with the Russian people before they get tired of it.
So… now what?
It seems for now Putin’s threat to bring his “Russian Army Deterrence Force” to an actual alert, based on what NATO /US intel is saying, hasn’t really occurred… yet. Also.. Putin hasn’t, so far, used chemical weapons, nor am I aware that he’s threatened to do so (I think we can safely assume he would never “threaten” its use.. and rather just use it as simply another weapon in his toolbox when he deems it necessary). I am also speculating (which means, hoping) the West’s intel services are tinkering there with certain covert operations. I might also presume to think with each shipment of weaponry assistance from the West a few of our people are staying there showing them how to set things up, plug things in, and how to aim.
The no-fly zone seems just a quick road to direct confrontation and Putin using nukes. I’ve heard there’s some activity in securing former Soviet aircraft that were left in the former Soviet satellites and giving those to the Ukrainians as they would have pilots with more familiarity from having been trained on such aircraft. Unknown how much time that might take to become effective in the fight. Then there’s those Turkish drones secured by the Ukrainians before the conflict, that apparently have been effective. Not sure more of those could be sneaked in under the Russians’ noses.
It seems what we do now is simply take one day at a time because the order of battle is not set and the battlefield situation is so fluid. It’s unfortunate for the Ukrainian population that each day they suffer more at the hands of the Russians. That brings up the media and what they can show on TV. I know myself, as a viewer from thousands of miles away, I tend to get a little frustrated in not being able to see for myself the fighting, the damage inflicted on the Russians in order to gauge for myself how the effort is going. Reporters are not embedded with the troops in the field… and have been limited to more safe urban areas. Until the urban areas got under attack from artillery and missiles the average TV viewer could only guess how good or badly the war was going in the rural areas and smaller towns and cities. We have been sending aid in the form of shoulder launched weaponry to take out tanks and low flying aircraft… but we were not hearing or seeing how effective this stuff was to the Ukrainians. When the numbers started coming in on vehicles destroyed and aircraft shot down.. and Russian KIA… it was still just a number, and who knows how factual those counts were. (Love that video being shown all over today of the Russian chopper shot down in mid flight.. and that Russian fighter going down). But as time goes on more “home” video is coming through showing the devastation. The coverage of the civilian human suffering is going to show even worse imagery as the days wear on. Just a little over a week ago this was a peaceful country.. under threat for sure.. but with a public trying to live in peace. Perhaps I see an image in all that suffering as being a reflection of what could be for the rest of us.. certainly for some countries in Europe.
A Plus For Globalization!
For those readers that have had reservations about the impact of globalization over the past couple decades I think we can safely say that had not the world been engaged in the evolution to globalization we’d not be able to dump sanctions onto Putin and his cohorts. Back in the days of the old Soviet empire their economic system was fairly introverted and markedly a poor system in general given it was all about Marxist Socialism/Communism. Quite obviously since then the Russian economy had expanded into free market capitalism. If you’ve been watching the media you could easily see the impact of all those quite familiar corporations withdrawing from Russia in protest to the invasion. Of course all those banking restrictions would have been impossible under the Soviet system… and given the social media and business online as a result of the internet, data can be collected on nearly everyone.. and the proverbial money trails can lead to sanctions on individuals inside Russia. Now, whether any of this will haver a great impact on Russian society… much less be an applied pressure on Putin himself, is all speculation.
Maybe Our Battle Against Putin Begins Right Here At Home
Perhaps this is the battle.. suck it up, America… prices and inflation will rise because of the war in the Ukraine. Refuse Russian oil imports (only 2% for us.. Europe will suffer more)… sacrifice for a while the increase in transportations costs affecting the food we buy. Maybe that’s our contribution to mellow or even eliminate Putin’s influence in Europe.. and his nuclear threat to the world. Maybe in some small way we might get a little bit inspired by the patriotism and outright heroism being displayed by the Ukrainians in the streets. After all.. we’re divided and arguing among ourselves.. even threatening to kill each other in some glorious civil war to prove a political point to each other. I dunno about you, but I’m feeling a bit embarrassed to be an American right about now. The least we could do is learn from the folks in Ukraine.. and help them.. because Putin is just NOT their problem alone.
As for this idea of prosecuting him for war crimes at The Hague… sure, go for it. But that alone does nothing for the here-and-now.
Now, we can appreciate all the efforts of various intermediaries trying to secure a cease-fire or even a negotiated peace. We can’t stop those efforts. BUT….. remember this… even if all this diplomacy works in stopping the fighting… Putin still remains in power… and the greatest threat to humanity the world has ever known, and the rest of us will have to bow down to, to avoid a nuclear holocaust. When.. who.. draws the line in the sand? Should that line even be drawn?
On the short term all we can do is wait and see… one day at a time