Russian President Vladimir Putin on Sunday ordered Russia’s nuclear forces to be put on “special” alert in response to Western sanctions and what he said were “aggressive statements” made by NATO countries.
“Top officials in NATO’s leading countries have been making aggressive statements against our country. For this reason, I give orders to the defense minister and chief of the General Staff to introduce a special combat service regime in the Russian army’s deference forces,” Putin said, according to Russia’s Tass news agency.
According to RT, Putin activated a “deterrent force,” which includes both nuclear and conventional strategic weapons that can be used offensively or defensively. The Russian military says the force is designed “to deter aggression against Russia and its allies, as well as to defeat the aggressor, including in a war with the use of nuclear weapons.”
Putin’s move comes after the US and its European allies announced that they are expelling some Russian banks from the SWIFT international financial system. The US and its allies have imposed a series of harsh sanctions on Russia since its assault on Ukraine began.
The Western powers are also taking steps to send more weapons to Ukraine to help them fight Russia. On Saturday, the US announced an additional $350 million in military aid for Ukraine. “This package will include further lethal defensive assistance to help Ukraine address the armored, airborne, and other threats it is now facing,” Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement on the new aid.
On Friday, the White House asked Congress for $6.4 billion for military and humanitarian aid to give to Ukraine and other countries in the region. At this point, it’s not clear how the US will deliver the aid since Ukraine’s airspace is not safe. Ukraine’s defense minister has suggested shipping the arms to Poland from where they can be taken across the border.
Putin has said that if Ukraine declares neutrality from NATO and agrees to demilitarize that the assault will stop. Ukraine and Russia have reportedly agreed to hold ceasefire talks, although there have been conflicting statements from each side as to where they will be held.
100 thoughts on “Putin Orders Nuclear Forces on High Alert, Cites Western Sanctions”
Article penned by David Stockman for anti-war.com: https://original.antiwar.com/David_Stockman/2022/02/23/george-kennan-warned-nato-expansion-would-lead-to-this/ For years we have been merrily going our way as if there had been no end to the Cold War. The last sentence by George Brennan was quite prophetic. The pressures we have applied to Russia, as we conducted wars abroad, which did not bring sanctions against the U.S., pressures that were tantamount to stretching a rubber band. Well, that rubber band has snapped. Russia has reacted badly.
Can you imagine what the US would do if its beloved capitalistic state was brought to a halt via strong-arming by Russia? They couldn’t even be bothered to slow it down during a pandemic where its own citizens’ lives were at stake.
We (not us but the US gov’t) are playing a very very dangerous game here.
Thank you for saying clearly and concisely exactly how I am feeling..
I actually believe that Russia has reacted in a very cool, deliberate manner, Russia did not
want to engage NATO until many levels of escallation were analysed and agrred upon with a number of global players.
First the paper exercise that NATO and US treated as a joke, It was meant to be taken seriously, but Lavriv did not hold his breat.
Russia announced that it was getting ready to implemen technical-military measures. That iis to demilitarize Ukraine and remove nazi elements.
Now it ix Ukrzine having sn opportunity to accept Rusdian terms.
If not, orocess to demilitarize will continue,
This is the process of bifurcation— there will be
world and the rest of the glibe. New payment sistems are already in place. Trade will be affected, but more so Europesn. Rusdia can buy productd anywhere, especially China. Whle Europe has list customers. I believe that China does not expect EU deal now that it has backed Russia openly. Asiia, Africa and Latin America are growing market. ‘
It follows that dollar trade will be reduced. And that Euro will be in danger —‘zChina and Russia will probsblymtake away a prize, nominating Power of Siberia. In euros.
After bifurcatiion, NATO countries will either not br welcome or will practice glorious self-isolation,
Remains to be seen how will glibal institutions survive.
Cool and deliberate? Not in this case. Ukraine returning to nuclear-armed status rattled them.
Russia counter-invaded Ukraine and now appear surprised Ukrainians in non-Russian Ukraine are shooting back.
We’re used to only seeing the US act with careless hubris.
Oh, this is just bloody great….
The US is also at DEFCON 2. The heading should say the US and Russia are at poise to launch nuclear missiles at any moment.
Thank you for the clarification.-donna
No American troops being sent for some reason. They prefer the proxy modus operandi.
With nearly eight Russian navy ships in the eastern Med, our presence in eastern Syria may come to an abrupt end.
This is going to get very interesting…
“expelling SOME russian banks from using SWIFT”
Does this sound like politicians picking economic winners and losers inside Russia? Do these influencers have investments in the banks that are not expelled? Why wouldn’t they?
prod and poke, starve and steal from a wounded bear sitting on a huge pile of gunpowder,how could anything go wrong- not with a whimper but with one hellva a bang…
How come i keep seeing Charleton Heston at the end of the movie Planet of apes over and over saying: “You finally, really did it. You maniacs! You blew it up!”
Now THERE’S a logical course of action; sending more weapons to attempt to de-escalate a war against a nuclear-powered nation…
Is Ukraine Serbia? Is Austria-Hungary going to make 14 demands? Why this insane loop over and over? Substitute russia for usa, and then iraq for Ukraine and then you could do it many times over. How Saudia Arabia and Yemen? Beam me up Scotty, i’ve been here far too long.
De-escalate? That’s not the plan.
NATO planners want another Afghanistan.
“The Western powers are also taking steps to send more weapons to Ukraine to help them fight Russia.”___ I am laughing Too Loud…!!!
Send More Weapons to Ukraine that get stored in Warehouses, that get seized Again by Russian Forces like the one happened two days ago…!!! The weapons are stored because US & NATO have Not got a chance to train the Ukrainian soldiers how to use these weapons…!!!
“The CIA has been overseeing a secret training program for Ukrainian special operations forces and intelligence operatives since 2015, Yahoo News reported on Thursday, citing five former intelligence and national security officials.
One former CIA official said the US is “training an insurgency” in Ukraine and that the program teaches the Ukrainians how “to kill Russians,” although other officials downplayed the training and said it was not meant for offensive purposes.
The training has been held at an undisclosed base in the southern United States. It was started by the Obama administration, was expanded by President Trump, and further expanded by President Biden. The program includes training in firearms, camouflage techniques, land navigation, and other areas, former officials told Yahoo.
The program was overseen by the CIA’s Ground Branch, the spy agency’s elite paramilitary unit. The Yahoo report said by 2015, Ground Branch personnel were deployed to the front in eastern Ukraine to advise the Ukrainian forces.
In comments to Yahoo, the CIA denied that it has been training a Ukrainian insurgency. But The New York Times reported on Friday that the US is considering supporting an insurgency in Ukraine if Russia invades.
For months now, the US has been claiming Russia is planning to invade Ukraine, an accusation Moscow strongly denies. Russia held talks this week with the US and NATO on Ukraine and other issues, but little progress was made.”
In the video on Consortium News I referenced in the Doctorow thread, Scott Ritter dismissed these guys – the CIA Ground unit – as a bunch of thugs and incompetents who have no idea what they’re doing. Plus, they’ve been training the neo-Nazis who in turn have been training US right-white nationalists. Talk about an own goal.
Putin put that out for public consumption. Russian nukes are always ready-to-go, as are NATO’s.
Its possible the war on the ground is not going as well as expected. Ukraine is not folding as quickly as some may have been led to expect.
However, peace talks are scheduled for Monday morning somewhere in Gomel, Belarus.
Yes, and the public had best consume it. We are warned.
Biden told us Putin was about to invade, and all we got was “not really” from our press. They pretended it would be some little controlled border action for which a few sanctions would make us even more dominant.
To be fair, what I and others said was that Russia didn’t want to “invade”, but if Ukraine escalated they would take Ukraine off the board. That’s what has actually happened. That Russia was always *prepared* to “invade” was always true.
Russia had made no significant air power preparations, or if they had this wasn’t reported and certainly not used in the war so far.
Prepping for an air campaign, was what I thought the best indicator of invasion.
Given how well the war in Ukraine is going for them, I’d say the Russians should have made real Shock and Awe preparations if they were going in.
The very act of doing so might have quieted NATO bit. As it stands Ukraine resiliency has only emboldened NATO.
As Scott Ritter pointed out in the Consortium News video I referenced in another thread, Russia is making extensive efforts not to harm Ukrainian civilians. So “Shock and Awe” was not in the cards. He said Russia was willing to accept that this would increase Russian losses to do this. I tend to agree with you that a harder line might have been better, but it is what it is. In any event, the end result will be the same. Ukraine is being take off the board.
By the way, that’s probably why Russia is limiting air power – that tends to produce too many civilian casualties, as US operations have proven over and over.
Has Russia learned nothing from the Syrian PMU experience?
The neo-Nazi militias are jumped up civilians.
They should be perfectly capable of exploiting civilian cover.
Yes, Russia has learned. That’s why things are progressing as they are. Relax.
“As of February 28, new assault units of the radical organization Right Sector arrived in Mariupol from Lvov Region. They deployed armored vehicles and artillery in residential areas of the city, using the local
population as “human shields”. There are reports of dozens of civilians having been killed by them.”
An armoured neo-Nazi convoy crawled all the way across Ukraine from Lvov (Lviv) to Mariupol?
Even if they were just being surveilled, they should have been cratered short of entry into Mariupol.
That wasn’t my impression. The MSM was over the top with immanent Russian invasion. It was the alternative news that had become skeptical.
Given the Western tendency to project, it was easy to assume NATO was planning to sponsor an attack.
Russian troops were positioned to defend the Donbass, Crimea and Belarus.
Likely Belarus remains in a condition of elevated defense alert given that they were holding a referendum on renouncing non-nuclear status, to counter any threat of NATO nukes in Poland or Lithuania.
In fact Reuters reports Belarus has just adopted a new constitution removing non-nuclear status.
Whether the public heeds Putin’s warnings or not is irrelevant; we have little say till election time.
Yes, the MSM was over the top. I’m saying that in fact Russia did not intend to “invade” until it was clear the the negotiations over the last couple months were going to go nowhere – which, of course, they expected would be the case, which is why they prepared for an invasion. The question was whether the “invasion” was a premeditated “invasion” under false pretenses in the sense that the US engages in, such as Iraq and Afghanistan, and which is how the US characterized the Russian preparations. I argue and argued that even if Russia did “invade”, it was for understandable reasons.
In the end, this proved to be irrelevant since in fact it is an invasion, albeit for the reasons cited by Russia and not the reasons cited by the US.
As for election time, we have little say then, either. Which is why, as an anarchist, I don’t waste time voting. Few, if any, electorates really control their states, especially in large countries. They certainly don’t in the US.
How many times has the incrementally better path not been taken, because some people wanted everything exactly their way or not at all.
We’re seeing the results of not at all.
Also, the qualitative motivation behind military actions matter. Shallow absolutism never works.
Its like the difference between the correct translation of Commandment #6, ‘Thou shalt not murder,” and the generic incorrect translation, “Thou shalt not kill.”
Thou shalt not kill is unworkable absolutism that nonetheless requires only unthinking blind obedience.
Thou shalt not murder, is nuanced pragmatism that requires thought and understanding.
I’d agree with that, eliding the religious reference. I’m a rabid atheist, as well as a rabid anti-moralist.
Its fine to have those beliefs, but being rabid about them will turn them into a religion.
Religions that survive work, ironically, by their best leaders being understanding and accommodating when they have to be.
Consensus among the military experts I follow is that Russia is making its gains as expected. Nothing in war goes as fast as hoped. However, most experts view this Russian advance as the fastest or nearly the fastest in military history. Advances of 100 or more miles a day is nearly unheard of. And Russia hasn’t even committed more than 20% or so of its forces, AND they’re making extraordinary efforts to avoid interrupting Ukrainian civilian life, which is why the Internet and phone service is still up. Scott Ritter makes the point that Russia is risking Russian soldiers lives to avoid harming civilians. All this is one reason why things slowed down a little. Also, Putin ordered a pause the other day when it looked like Zelensky wanted to talk, then resumed the advance when that broke down. Now it’s on again, so there might be another pause.
Ukraine is pretty flat; gains can be made fast.
Russian forces are stalled out at the cities. Neo-Nazi PMUs are jumped-up civilians; protecting civilian infrastructure helps them, unfortunately.
The neo-Nazis don’t appear to have been really degraded, just the higher profile official military.
However, its these popular militia units that prop Kiev and keep the official military in check. The original Schutstaffel may have been the model, but these are probably much better organized.
Azov, Right Sector, and others would form a parallel medium infantry force with their own arms caches, comms, and command structure, likely tied not to the Kiev government directly but through their sponsors, whatever steps were taken to ‘integrate’ them.
No, they’re not “stalled out of the cities”. Russians are following their usual protocol: advance until resistance met, then spread out and encircle. Then probe, weaken, rinse and repeat until enemy weakened enough to invade. It’s just going to take a little longer than the usual US method of bomb the crap out of civilians.
As for integration of Nazis, look up some of these guys – they are embedded in the Ukraine government. See my post elsewhere from Meyssan who alleges Victoria Nuland personally got some of them in the Ukraine military top level recently (although he offers no actual proof.) I don’t disagree that they are essentially a parallel government, but they really do have influence in the “legit” one. They’re the shock troops used by the CIA and the neocons to keep the Ukrainians in line.
…. Well isn’t that what I have been posting over? Russia not having a real plan to take out neo-Nazi units?
Again, there are no Ukrainian PMUs outside those already in existence in Donbass and no plans to raise more. Kiev, is now additionally trying to raise an International Brigade.
Its not just that Kiev PMUs are a parallel government, but a parallel military structure.
Destroying the AFU/Interior Ministry facade doesn’t mean nearly as much as it would in a conventional European war.
Official status was just a convenience to make it easier to pay and arm PMUs at a basic level and give them some protection under the rules of war.
As Mao said, “The guerrilla must move amongst the people as a fish swims in the sea.”
Its fine not to want to harm ordinary Ukrainians but this has to be done more intelligently than asking soldiers not to shoot back when shot at by ‘civilians’.
The supply of willing martyrs will go fast.
Confirmed and re-confirmed.
9 underground US bioweapon labs in Ukraine were DESTROYED by Iskander missiles.
No confirmation on the status of other 4 labs.
Russia asked the Americans diplomatically – for years.
Now talk to Mr. Iskander.
Thanks, I and others have been unable to find anything about what happened to those labs.
He didn’t add a link, so I assume he heard through the intelligence grapevine.
“Eve of Destruction” on the scale of the Cuban Missile Crisis causes no pause in the propaganda rush.
How did we get here? No real reflection on that, yet.
This was bungled, and when nuclear weapons come into question, then more bungling could kill us all.
Among other agendas, NATO was desperate for relevance. Now they are the centre of attention and loving this crisis, one they did more than anyone else to hype and hustle.
Trump was right to talk about leaving NATO and wrong to leave that at just talk.
You are right. If Trump (or any other president) would leave NATO, the world be much safer.
Why Americans need their missiles on Russian border if they don’t plan a surprise first strike against Russia?
So, if Americans plan such an attack, they shouldn’t be surprised if Russia strike first. Particular now, when Russia has hypersonic missiles, but US have not.
There is a lack of realism.
The US did not take Baghdad by the third day of its crushing victory over Saddam.
The US did not enter Kabul on the third day of occupying Afghanistan.
In the gold standard for fast war, Israel had a Six Day War that never entered nor got close to Cairo.
On the third day, Russia is on the outskirts of all the major Ukraine cities. This is counted as a victory for Ukraine, because they did not lose even faster than anyone has ever lost a war.
Let’s get real. This is not going well. It is certainly not one great victory after another over the Evil Putin.
I don’t say this to wish him well, but I want to read honest reporting. I don’t want a steady diet of “Babies Thrown From Incubators” pure misleading propaganda a la Kuwait and the Persian Gulf War.
Indeed. Some people have estimated that this is the fastest military advance in military history. Some people quibble with that, but if it’s not the fastest it’s a close second.
The exit of civilians from Mariupol is blocked by fighters of nationalist battalions. There is video evidence of civilians being shot, when they were trying to leave the city, including women and children. On February 26, Ukrainian Banderite forces killed a family, who were trying to leave the city of Mariupol. Then, they opened fire on other civilian cars.
The situation in the city remains tense. While the joint Russian, DPR forces are advancing to the city, members of Bandarite units like Azov and Gaidar are killing civilians who are trying to flee from being ‘hostage’ in the city. While civilians were prohibited to leave the city, more Ukrainian heavy equipment is being deployed on the streets of Mariupol.
Following the advance of the Crimean group of Russian troops, which has passed through Berdyansk, the DPR forces reportedly managed to cut off Volnovakha from Mariupol and now can target the route to Mariupol. Ukrainian forces are close to surrounding the city. The combined DPR/Russian troops will set up civilian corridors as they did in Syria.
In the night of 25 to 26 February 2022, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky addressed a ceasefire proposal to Russia via the Chinese Embassy in Kiev.
The Kremlin immediately informed him of its terms:
arrest of all Banderites (special military adviser Dmitro Yarosh, Azov Battalion, etc.),
removal of all street names and monuments glorifying WW2 collaborators (Stepan Bandera, etc.),
surrender of weapons.
Which of course would then lead to war crimes tribunals where most of the Western leaders would be presented for crimes against humanity, specifically the crimes of ethnic cleansing and genocide.
North Korea fires ballistic missile eastward.
I might be stretching credulity, but is it possible Russia, China, and North Korea are coordinating ballistic missile launches should Mr. Putin initiate the ultimate order?
Due to proximity, Tokyo and Seoul seem to be their only targets.
Doubtful at best. Russia and China are coordinating between themselves, but NK is likely not in on any of that.
It’s rather funny to think that the civilians being pressed into defending the Ukraine are lauded as ‘heroes’, while the civilians who rose up against US forces in Iraq and Afghanistan (and other nations) were instantly labeled ‘insurgents’ or ‘terrorists’. It’s an amazing double standard on public display, and not one that reflects well on the US.
Ukrainian army begins to use more serious smart weapons – Lugansk leader
Retreating Ukrainian army leaves foreign-made weapons – DPR People’s Militia
According to Basurin, it is yet another proof that the weapons supplied by the West are not being used in defense purposes as Kiev has been declaring
Latest from Moon of Alabama…
Disarming Ukraine – Day 4
Articles he references:
India shouldn’t miss world war pointer
This is the important point:
This point is important because, as I said in an email to someone this morning, the progression from Article 4 of the NATO Charter to Article 5 of the NATO Charter to a UNSC Resolution – which is then veoted by Russia and China – leads to the US and NATO ignoring the UN and intervening – just as it did in Yugoslavia. While one hopes that the US and NATO understand the military balance is overwhelming in Russia’s favor, unlike what Bhadrakumar suggests in the second paragraph, can we be sure they understand that?
Patrick Armstrong weighs in.
RUSSIA UKRAINE 1
And Scott Ritter again…
Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine in Perspective
I can’t tell if the talks reported on the front page are superceded by this report from RT. I wouldn’t be surprised if Ukraine is still jerking Russia round with this on-again-off-again negotiations bullshit.
Anyone have any definitive last minute update? Last I heard, talks were supposed to be held on Monday due to the difficulty of getting the Ukrainian team there.
Not that it matters. There won’t be any “negotiations” since Russian demands are non-negotiable.
Moscow sends negotiating team, but Ukraine rejects summit location
Someone on Moon makes a useful point about all these “Russian troops forced out of cities” reports:
At the operational level there have been mistakes such as what you mention about convoys undefended.
At the strategic level things are very much on track. Russian procedure on clearing towns is excellent and was used extensively in Syria.
Step 1 approach the town and assess the chance of their surrender
Step 2 surround the town, cutting off resupply.
Step 3 based on initial recon begin with very targeted strikes weakening defenses
Step 4 send in probes to gain a clearer picture of internal defenses
Step 5 begin degrading them
Step 6 open humanitarian corridors
Step 7 begin probing attacks from different sides 24/7 to disturb and confuse and sleep deprive (your troops can rest)
Step 8 when defenses are sufficiently weakened invade
Posted by: Merandor | Feb 27 2022 15:01 utc | 48
More delusional bullshit from Zelenskey… Doesn’t this guy ever stop? Russia needs to send some Chechen assassins to Lvov and just whack this guy.
Zelensky invites foreigners to fight for Ukraine
The president has established an international legion for foreign volunteers amid conflict with Russia
Heh… Good luck with that, Ukraine… The longer you wait, the worse it’s going to be for you. Of course, they can’t surrender because if they do, Russia gets to arrest them all for war crimes trials, then execute them. Pretty much the same situation Saddam’s cronies were in.
Ukraine vows not to surrender
The country will not “give up a single inch” of its territory, its foreign minister has said
Ukraine vows not to surrender
The UK is positively slavering for a war between NATO and Russia. They’ve gone full-blown crazy. The idea that this conflict will last for “years” is risible. The entire reason that Russia has taken this step is to insure that it doesn’t.
UK warns of Russia-NATO conflict
Foreign Secretary says West should be ‘prepared for a very long haul’ in Ukraine and a potential clash between Moscow and the military bloc
UK warns of Russia-NATO conflict
I have no desire to get my ass nuked…
Not even going to go there… 🙂
I appreciate that!
Exactly what I said might happen. The UN moves to start a war with Russia over Ukraine… As a commentator on Moon mentions, ” Guterres vies with Stoltenberg for siding with the US. He hasn’t mentioned UNSC 2202(2015) since it was passed seven years ago, for example.” While I don’t expect the General Assembly to pass a Resolution authorizing war with Russia, the next step after this, as in Yugoslavia, is for the US and NATO to decide to ignore the UN and intervene anyway.
U.N. Security Council plans vote to call General Assembly meeting on Ukraine
From Consortium News… Awesome resource set of videos. Haven’t watched them yet, though. I may download them for later.
WATCH: ‘The War in Ukraine’
In 2015 and 2017, the Watchdog Media Institute released a 22-part video series on Maidan and Kiev’s war on ethnic Russians. Watch the summary 25-minute film and the entire series here.
Produced and presented by the Watchdog Media Institute, here is a chronological archive of events in Ukraine from the beginning of the Euromaidan protests in November 2013 to the downing of Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 in July 2014. Hundreds of various sources are presented without commentary and in context, allowing the viewer to adequately interpret the information themselves. Research & Editing by: Chris Nolan. Subtitles by: Angelina Siard & Ollie Richardson. This video series presents an invaluable background to the beginnings of the war in Ukraine that eventually led to the Russian intervention on Thursday, a war which Russian President Vladimir Putin said he wasn’t starting, but trying to end.
“MUST WATCH. Take your time, watch it carefully, keep it for reference.” – Pepe Escobar
“Incredible documentary of US overthrow of democracy in Ukraine.” – Cynthia McKinney
Below are the links to watch all 22-parts, and below that links to download each episode.
Interesting comments by Meyssan on Victoria Nuland changing offices in the Ukrainian military to emphasize the presence of neo-Nazis. Significant if true. He offers no actual proof,
Comments by Thierry Meyssan on Russia’s intervention in Ukraine (Video)
Interesting speculation… No evidence, of course, but I wouldn’t put it past the US and NATO. Certainly, as others have suggested that it will mean a ton of crazies from all the Islamic states and neo-Nazis from Europe will flood into Ukraine. Great! Let them come! Russia can wipe them all out! “Fight them over there so we don’t have to fight them here” as the US likes to say.
Russians With Attitude @RWApodcast
This is just speculation but I suspect this is mainly a reaction to Zelensky’s announcement of creating a “Foreign Legion” & Russian expectations that this means covert deployment of NATO forces
Russians With Attitude @RWApodcast
Vladimir Putin has placed Russia’s strategic deterrence forces — including units in charge of its nuclear capabilities — on high alert in response to “illegitimate western sanctions”
“I order to move Russia’s deterrence forces to a special regime of duty,” Putin said
Excellent piece by Alastair Crooke today.
The ‘Constructive Destruction’ of Russia’s Model of Relations with the West
Andrei Martyanov – who’s been out of town for a wedding – finally weighs in…
Interesting notion that I believe I’ve seen floated before, i.e, the western portion of Ukraine abandons the rest, applies to NATO membership. I’ve no idea how feasible this is.
Zelensky’s Reported Evacuation To Lvov Risks Prompting Ukraine’s Partition
More complete and utter idiocy from the morons in the EU… Although a nice way to get rid of some old junk cluttering up the hangars. Like any of this Soviet Era crap could stand against the current Russian Air Force. Or that any of this would even arrive in Ukraine before being destroyed.
EU Member Countries in Talks to Supply Ukraine With Jet Fighters
LOL Good one! Watch the video!
Day 4 Russian Forces in Kharkov and Ukraine Crumbles Behind a Wall of Lies
The Saker posts a short update… Re the situation in Mariupol – that’s what the 10,000 Chechens are presumably for.
Quick interlude with a few quick comments
I’ve just posted this over at The Saker. I’d like to ask for comments from the Antiwar crowd as well.
Originally I thought that if this operation kicked off that we were far away from going to WWIII over it. I figured at least the military professional in the US and NATO were aware of the military balance between Russia and the US/NATO forces available in Europe. I figured if they looked at the THIRTY war games they have conducted that showed NATO losing *every single one* of them that they would limit themselves to economic sanctions and bitching and moaning.
Today I’m a little more concerned about the progression of events. Here is what I posted in an email to an acquaintance today about my concerns since he is very concerned over the WWIII possibility, as he is
a “prepper” – as I am to a lesser degree.
Got notice of Glenn Greenwald’s latest Substack article this morning. Very well-done piece on how the biggest threat now is not Putin but the
war propaganda and the group-think that is fomenting censorship across the US. It’s as bad or even worse than the groupthink after 9/11.
Greenwald notes some of the memes floating around about the conflict that are questionable at best and fakes at worst that are being taken
seriously by a lot of people, also how a bunch of deranged Congressional
members are advocating outright war with Russia.
I have frequently agreed with Greenwald on his positions over the years, although I had concerns about his stance on the so-called “Wuhan lab leak theory” and his focus on MSM personalities rather than on more
substantive issues like Ukraine and Russia’s treaty proposals – he and
Jimmy Dore and others were very late to that story. But this piece is
spot on. Check it out.
While I still think we are far from WWIII, it is concerning that there is this much hype over “confronting Russia.” As the video interview on Consortium News I recommended to you last night made clear, as well as Alexander Mercouris’ recent videos, the sanctions being recommended won’t have any significant impact on Russia. You were
correct when you said they’re mostly self-sufficient at this point..
The concern I have now is Article 4 of the NATO Charter and the possible progression from there. While Article 5 calls on NATO to
respond when any NATO member is attacked, and of course Ukraine does not qualify, Article 4 calls for “consultation” whenever a NATO member’s “security” are reportedly threatened. This is much more vague. The last time it was invoked was precisely by Poland and Latvia in the 2014 conflict in Ukraine after the Maidan events. From an article I found:
Its most recent use was in February 2020, when Turkey, which has
triggered consultations more than any other country, invoked the article
after Syrian government forces killed dozens of Turkish soldiers in an
attack in opposition-held regions in northern Syria.
The other five times it was used were:
July 2015: Turkey invoked Article 4 to alert the alliance to its impending response to terrorist attacks
March 2014: Poland invoked Article 4 to discuss increasing tensions in Ukraine amid Russian aggression
October 2012: Turkey triggered talks after five Turkish civilians were killed by Syrian shells
June 2012: Turkey requested a meeting after one of its fighter jets was shot down by Syrian air defense forces
February 2003: Turkey invoked Article 4 asking NATO to help protect its people from any spillover consequences of the war in Iraq
On Thursday, a group of Eastern European countries, including Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, and Slovakia requested discussions under NATO Article 4. Note that these are all the small Slavic countries admitted to NATO after its eastward push over the last thirty years. This is precisely the situation that Russia and some in the West have complained about – these small countries invoking NATO against Russia because they hate Russia
due to their history of being under the Soviet Union.
When they announced the activation of the Rapid Response force under
Article 4, they noted that this is the first time that’s been done in NATO history. However, Article 4 doesn’t require NATO to commit to the
use of force. It is, however, a step up in NATO response.
The other problem is the UN. The only way members of the UN can engage in the use of force is by invoking Chapter 7 of the UN Charter,
which authorizes use of force in situations which are a general threat
to “peace and security” of a region. The Iraq war was specifically not
authorized by the UN Security Council. It is unlikely that any such use
of force would be authorized by the UN against Russia over Ukraine, even though it might well be found to constitute a general threat – because Russia would veto the Resolution, as well as China.
However, the intervention by NATO in Yugoslavia was done outside of
the UN’s Chapter 7. It was done under explicitly “humanitarian” concerns. An article I just read suggests that as “humanitarian law” has
risen as a concern under international law, it has become ambiguous as
to when and where countries can claim justification under international
law for the initiation of force against other countries. Yugoslavia was
the main test case promoting this. While UNSC Resolutions called on
member states to take steps to reduce the violence in the region under
Chapter 7, it explicitly did not authorize use of force. The US and NATO
did it anyway.
So the concern is that NATO will use Article 4 to increase NATO readiness to intervene in Ukraine, possibly followed by an attempt to
get UNSC support for it, which will then be vetoed by Russia and China
(as it was in Syria, after Russia and China got burned by the US and
NATO in Libya, when Russia and China supported a “humanitarian
intervention” which then turned into regime change against Kaddafi’s
regime), followed by NATO deciding to ignore the UN and “do it anyway.”
As some people have said, if the UN couldn’t enforce its Resolutions
over Yugoslavia, what good is it? The legal case in the World Court
against NATO in that intervention has yet to be decided, apparently,
years later. So the US and NATO got away with it.
Given the “war hysteria” built up in the US and the fact of the upcoming midterm elections, I wonder how long Biden can maintain his position that the US and NATO will not commit any forces in some manner against Russia in Ukraine, other than supporting Ukraine externally with weapons and such.
As I’ve mentioned before, the balance of power between the US and
Russia is such that if NATO gets involved, Russia will trounce them
badly. The issue then becomes one of two: 1) does the US and NATO accept defeat in a conventionally fought conflict without going nuclear, or 2) does the US escalate to the use of nuclear force? You have suggested that Russia might resort to the use of tactical nuclear weapons. This is really unlikely in Ukraine as Russia is in no threat of defeat in Ukraine. Nor is it likely that Russia would resort to tactical or other nukes in the event of a NATO attack on its forces in Ukraine or
elsewhere. Russian military doctrine definitely allows for that, but
Russia, as everyone else, recognizes the threat of nuclear war and will
not resort to that as long as its forces are capable of defeating NATO
and US conventional forces. The problem is the US: will the US resort to
use of nuclear weapons if it faces a disastrous defeat in Europe? Given
the level of hysteria and jingoism in this country, I have to say it
does not look good in that situation. Russia placed its strategic forces
on high alert yesterday as a warning to the US and NATO about
intervening precisely because of its concern over that possibility.
However, at the moment, we are still far from that scenario. However,
a lot of news articles are appearing about Chapter 4 of the NATO Charter, since it has been invoked. and the Rapid Response force has been activated. So I’m getting a bit more concerned about WWIII than I
was last week, now that I know a bit more about the history of the use
of NATO outside of UN authorization. I was aware of the issues
surrounding NATO involvement in Yugoslavia, but had not followed that
situation closely as I was not that interested in foreign affairs back
in the Clinton years.
Comments from the AntiWar crowd?
Speaking of which, M.K. Bhadrakumar makes a similar point in this piece.
India shouldn’t miss world war pointer
Speaking of which, M.K. Bhadrakumar makes a similar point in this piece.
India shouldn’t miss world war pointer
Basically It seems that all NATO members are on board for escalating things. Germany has done a 180 so I think it’s very possible a US-Russia war happens in the weeks ahead. I hope I’m wrong of course
Gonzalo Lira, the fellow who was on The Duran video makes his own video on the Ukraine situation. Business Insider has a profile on him. He goes by the moniker “Coach Red Pill.” Lot of people apparently don’t like him, but he makes sense in this video. He’s currently in a hotel room in downtown Kiev which gives him some immediate perspective.
What Russia really wants from Ukraine – Zelensky is evil ( by CRP )
It doesn’t take much thought to figure out, enough Ukrainians will shoot back at an invading force to be a problem and not welcome them with flowers.
Although Lira is generally correct, apparently all these pro-Russia experts are blind to the Kiev Nazi-Islamic PMUs. They are the real Kiev army, and not captureable.
Russian shock and awe against the IS in Syria was a gold standard of shock and awe. Ukraine should have been no different.
Ukraine neo-Nazi arms caches and depots could not have been unknown to Russian surveillance. Dzhokhar Dudayev battalion is the core of the Interior Ministry.
Much of their material, even in Russian Ukraine, survived and was moved into civilian areas AFTER the initial precision bombardments.
The real ‘Ukraine army’ are these Nazi-Islamic PMUs, not the AFU.
For those who think the Russian operation has “slowed down”…
Russian armed forces eliminate over 900 Ukraine’s military facilities, says ministry
Make that 1,067…
Russian forces wipe out 1,067 Ukrainian military facilities – Defense Ministry
And so the censorship continues and escalates. Apparently Telegram is being pressured to control the news from Ukraine, as many channels are revealing too many flaws in the Ukrainian and US propaganda…
Telegram may restrict its channels in countries involved in situation around Ukraine
Or maybe not… Pressure from users causes them to reverse decision.
Telegram decides not to block channels in countries involved in conflict around Ukraine
As Scott Ritter said in the Consortium News video I referenced, the Russians are very serious about this. He said the neo-Nazis are going to die screaming in an an alley. Regardless of any “consultations”, this is going to be non-negotiable. Ritter also said this is why the Chechen Special Forces are sent in, notably their “hunter units” which are experts in tracking down and executing terrorists.
Kiev regime’s leaders to be inevitably punished – Russian Defense Ministry
The civilian population is not at risk, the Defense Ministry said
Well, Erdogan is going to find out that Putin remembers this stuff, just like he remembers Turkey shooting down a Russian jet in Syria in a “drive by”. Not that this matters, since all the ships Russia needs for the Ukraine operation are already in the Black Sea. The rest are in the Med where they can keep tabs on the US and NATO carrier battle groups.
Turkey restricts Russian Navy access
Situation in Ukraine has escalated into a full-blown war, Turkey’s top diplomat has said
Turkey restricts Russian Navy access
Update: From a commentator over at Moon:
“But I insist that, from above, this conflict is a distraction, that no matter how big this war is or how costly, it is still a distraction. Those who could finance a plandemic at that global level, can also even more easily create a war to distract the population, to make them afraid, so that they do not continue protesting against the plandemic, that is why they use Fake News to make the conflict look bigger.
I understand that it is hard to see or would not be believed that a war of that level, so costly to begin with, is just a distractor for plandemic. The human population itself can’t see it, because they don’t see the connection, they see everything separate when it is not. The cost of a distractor does not matter because on those higher levels no money is used. Meanwhile, the lower egregore entities feast on the lush that is generated by the creative attention based on fear and suffering of mainly human beings.
What they want is to create chaos, major economic trouble and shortages of all the basic stuff, to have people talk about this, about the war, and not the effects of the inoculations. It is part of exactly the same thing, the same system and agenda. They are all levels of the same perverse game. Don’t be fooled.”
Hope you don’t mind, but I’m going to dismiss that as complete bullshit. Don’t bother to respond.
Care to explain why?
A Chechen officer allegedly gets killed in Ukraine and the Chechen leader is pissed off, apparently.
While I might generally agree with him, as Scott Ritter points out in his Consortium News interview I referenced elsewhere, Russia is making an enormous effort to avoid Ukrainian civilian casualties and is willing to accept increased Russian casualties to do do.
Chechen leader Kadyrov calls for expanding Russia’s invasion ‘in all directions’
More from his Telegram channel (from Martyanov’s site):
Gonzalo Lira is an independent filmmaker, novelist and now a video-journalist. He’s currently in Kiev. He gives what some people are calling a relatively objective account of what is going on there. I haven’t watched this video yet by The Duran with Lira, Christoforou and Mercouris, but a lot of people are recommending it.
MASSIVE ESCALATION: US & EU sanction Russia’s Central Bank (Live)
“They don’t like us, anyhow, let’s drop the big one and see what happens”….
NATO expansion is at the epicenter of this earthquake. From a strategic standpoint, NATO has expanded from the Baltic Sea to the boarders of Ukraine. If Ukraine were to join NATO, it would be like having Russian nuclear missals in Texas. How would the US respond if Mexico decided to form a strategic alliance with Russia, and turn Puerto Villlarta into a Nuclear armed submarine base? There would be many similarities to Russia’s moves. Although, it must be said that the countries that have joined NATO lived under the jack boot of totalitarian Russian thugs for several generations.
Its as if NATO wanted the bloodshed to increase and the suffering to expand, just to say I told you so. If they are not joining the fight and Ukraine is outnumbered, giving them weapons results in prolonging the conflict. The longer it lasts, the higher the chances of a nuclear confrontation.
To make matters worse, they think that Putin is bluffing, just as they did before the invasion.
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