Wednesday, August 6, 2014

This and that about this and that

Dear friends,

A couple of item to bring to your attention today.

Short Absence

I will be gone all day tomorrow (my wife and I are celebrating our 20th anniversary!) and then busy for most of Thursday and Friday.  I will leave an open thread, as usual, which I will do my best to moderate.


Trolls have been a royal pain in the rear recently.  Some post their nonsense 3 or 4 times, so when I catch 2 or 3 one still gets through.  Recently, I noticed the following ones being especially active:
a) Putin bashers
b) Defeatists
c) Nazis
I try my best to filter them out, but this is really hard.  They take me by the numbers and then each of them slams me with 3-5 posts written in different comment section.  Please hang in there, before the end of the mouth I should have a new server and one (alas not two) pre-moderator who will help me deal with this issue.

Two substantive points now:

Military situation of Novorossia

Yes, there are indeed two mutually exclusive accounts of the situation.  The Ukies say that they are about to defeat the Resistance, as does most of the MSM, the Resistances is reporting huge Ukie losses.  One commentator even asked how such losses were possible if the Resistance did not regain any ground at all.  Actually, this contradiction is only apparent.  Here is what going on:

1) The Resistance is numerically small.  Too small to hold all the "front" everywhere.  Yes, in one location, the southern cauldron, it does have the Ukies pegged down, but only thanks to the fact that the Ukies ran out of ammo and that the Resistance has enough weapons and mines to keep them from retreating.  But even there the Resistances just does not have the manpower to mount an assault.  For the Resistance every solider counts, not only for obvious reasons of decency, but also because if it would expand soldiers at the rate the junta does it would rapidly lose the entire war.

2) The Resistance lacks firepower and armor.  This is getting better, but the Resistance does still not have what it takes to mount a counter offensive or even to engage the junta forces in open terrain.

The junta is fully aware of of these facts and it exploits these weaknesses by the following tactics:

i. always attack on all fronts at the same time
ii. use large armor formations
iii. use long range firepower (artillery)
iv. attack civilians to terrorize and weaken resolve

The Resistance is thus forced to do the following:

i. rapidly move artillery from one location to another
ii. engage in ambush tactics; attack from the flank; fake retreats
iii. try to draw in the junta forces into fire pockets and cut them off 
iv. use a lot of small reconnaissance units

To some degree this could be compared to a fight between a bear and a swarm of bees, in which neither side is really capable of a clear victory against the other.  The junta clearly has a huge numerical advantage and it is far from having used up most of its theoretical resources in hardware or men.  What it lacks is the combination of motivated and skilled men capable of mounting a sophisticated urban assault and engage the Resistance on its own terrain.

Keep in mind that almost all of the Ukie repressive machine (military, oligarch's terror squads, national guard, foreign mercenaries) is now engaged in the Donbass and that the only reason why this is possible is a mind-bogglingly shameful lack of resistance in the rest of the Ukraine.  This might change when basic supplies begin lacking and the first colds come in.  I bet you that the very same Ukies who don't care one bit that their fellow-citizens are being murdered every day by a Nazi junta will discover in themselves a totally new resolve to resist as soon as they become hungry.  I am sorry to have to bring up this shameful reality, but it simply cannot be ignored.  Thus the Resistance of Novorussia needs to hunker down and hold the fort as best can be until the rest of the Ukies realize that the Nazi junta sucks for them too.

Russia's compassionate treatment of Ukie soldiers: a civilizational choice

I have to say that I am shocked at the number of comments which condemned the Russian behavior as stupid, naive or otherwise misguided.  Then I realized that it is all a matter of presentation.  If you say "Russian is giving comfort, aid and support to Nazi war criminals who have butchered the innocent population of the Donbass" this does really sound crazy.  But this is a gross mis-representation to what took place.  First, the forces in the "southern cauldron" are light infantry, airborne and special forces.  They are not Nazi death squads.  Second, they were sent in under orders, often with threats to them and/or their families.  Third, they showed a great deal of personal courage, being stuck without food, ammo or support for weeks, under quasi constant artillery strikes from all sides, and little or no hope for rescue.  But most importantly, and this is what many people do not understand by no fault of their own, these guys are Russians as much as the Russians from Russia or the Russians from Novorussia.  Please understand that only a tiny minority of the Ukrainian population is really composed of crazy psychopaths like Liashko or corrupt scumbags like Poroshenko.  The vast majority of Ukrainians are really Russian culturally.  Sure, some speak Ukrainian and a most of them also feel Ukrainian, but in the same sense as a Bavarian feels Bavarian or a Floridian feels Floridian: not anti-German or anti-USA.  So when Russian soldiers see them, they see their own kind.  This is very hard to describe or to explain, but it is so. Sure, these Russian soldiers think "now what have you achieved?" and "how do you like your friggin independent Ukraine now?", bit mostly they feel sorry for them and what to show them a human, compassionate and, frankly, brotherly face.

Yesterday I saw a video of a group of Ukies crossing the border and surrendering to the Russian border guards.  Somebody was recording this on a phone and asking on of them, a professional military man with 10 years of service, why he had decided to surrender.  Listening to this Ukie officer speak, even I felt like this was one of my own people speaking, a fellow Russian who ended up in a terrible situation, but not one I wished any harm to.  I did not see a Liashko or a Poroshenko.  I saw a confused brother.

Keep in mind that a lot of the Russian soldiers welcoming the Ukie defectors are the very same ones who, a night, bomb the crap out of them right across the (very theoretical) border. So it's not like Russia has gone insane and only have flowers and hugs for those who objectively are fighting for the junta.  If they resist, the Russians will kill them.  And all the real Nazis have zero hope for mercy from the Russians.  But Nazis are a small minority of Ukrainians.  Mos are simply brainwashed, ignorant, often zombified people maybe, but still people worthy of compassion once they put down their weapons.  Just look at the following photo:

I much rather see that, then a humiliating incarceration or summary execution.

One more thing: the Ukraine, especially the Nazi-junta run Ukraine which I call "Banderastan" as always been about hatred.  Hatred of the Orthodox Christians, first and foremost, but also the hatred for Poles, Jews and Germans.  It has been about hatred for the Soviet Union and then for everything Russian.  And today, when I listen to the crazy nonsense the mainstream Ukie political figures spew, I am awed at how stupid and hateful this russophobic mindset is.  And look at the actions of these nationalists: from the burning of cops, to the use of sniper-provocateurs on the Maidan, to the betrayal of every single promise made or agreement signed, to the massacres in Odessa and Mariupol, to the use of White Phosphorus and ballistic missiles against civilians, at every step of its 6 months long existence this Banderastan has been ugly, vile, pathetic, uncivilized, dishonest, vicious, hypocritical, unprincipled and just plain evil.  It is crucial that Russia defeat this abomination not only by force of arms, but also morally, but not acting like the Ukies would.  In the end, it is a civilizational choice, one between a hate-filled materialistic ideology of total amorality versus an Orthodox Christian civilization which wants to uphold something more besides just the exchange rate of the Ruble or a visa-free entry into the EU.  Again, I will use two photos to illustrate my point:


The struggle against the Empire cannot be just narrowly limited to the battlefield.  It also means rejecting the imperial mode of operation, its values and its behavior.  We cannot resist and empire whose norms and values we accept.  Thus, it is essential for each one of us to either adopt an ancient code of conduct or develop a new one.  For Russia, this means a return to an Orthodox Christian or an Islamic code of honor which encompasses not only such issues as personal piety and morality, but also how to deal with a defeated enemy or a deceived and confused brother.  In Christian terms, this means that a correct faith (Orthodoxy) must be combined with the correct behavior (Orthopraxy) (I am sure that Islam has the same requirements).  For a country which in the not too distant past inflicted some horrible and inhuman treatment on its POW (Germans after WWII) it is a very important moral victory to have ditched that culture of retribution and replaced it with one of compassion.

That's it for right now.  I hope to post some interesting reports written by contributors later tonight, and I will personally be back only on Saturday afternoon.

Kind regards to all and please make use of the open thread.

The Saker