Ukraine War Day #164: Why The Ukrainians Need To Take Kherson

Nun defilierte Regiment auf Regiment mit fliegenden Fahnen und klingendem Spiel bei Nußknacker vorüber und stellte sich in breiter Reihe quer über den Boden des Zimmers. Aber vor ihnen her fuhren rasselnd Fritzens Kanonen auf, von den Kanoniern umgeben, und bald ging es bum bum und Marie sah wie die Zuckererbsen einschlugen in den dicken Haufen der Mäuse, die davon ganz weiß überpudert wurden und sich sehr schämten. Vorzüglich tat ihnen aber eine schwere Batterie viel Schaden, die auf Mamas Fußbank aufgefahren war und Pum — Pum — Pum, immer hintereinander fort Pfeffernüsse unter die Mäuse schoß, wovon sie umfielen. Die Mäuse kamen aber doch immer näher und überrannten sogar einige Kanonen, aber da ging es Prr — Prr, Prr, und vor Rauch und Staub konnte Marie kaum sehen, was nun geschah. Doch so viel war gewiß, daß jedes Korps sich mit der höchsten Erbitterung schlug, und der Sieg lange hin und her schwankte. Regiment after regiment now defiled before Nutcracker, with flying colors and warlike music, and ranged themselves in long rows across the floor of the chamber. Before them trundled Fritz’s cannon rattling along, surrounded by the cannoniers, and soon bom—bom it went, and Maria could see how the mice suffered under the bombardment, how the sugar-plums plunged into their dark, heavy mass, covering them with white powder, and throwing them more than once into shameful disorder. But the greatest damage was done them by a heavy battery that was mounted upon mamma’s footstool, which—pum, pum—kept up a steady fire of caraway seeds against the enemy, by which a great many of them fell. The mice, notwithstanding, came nearer and nearer, and at last captured some of the cannon, but then it went prr—prr—and Maria could scarcely see what now happened for the smoke and dust. This however was certain, that each corps fought with the greatest animosity, and the victory was for a long time doubtful.
E.T.A. Hoffmann, The Nutcracker And The Mouse King

Dear Readers:

In his description of the epic battle between Nutcracker (with his Allied forces of toy soldiers and dolls) versus the Mice, ETA Hoffmann accurately described the vital role played by artillery. Once the rodent brigades had captured the caraway-seed cannons, then Fritz’s toy soldiers were forced to retreat in disarray.

Once the Mouse-King captures the cannon, it’s game over!

For those who watch the youtube channel Ukraine Military Summary and Analysis, we learned yesterday “some very interesting updates,” as Dima likes to say. He believes that the Ukrainian decision to move artillery brigades from the Donbass to the Kherson front was a terrible blunder; leading to an irreversible breakthrough on the part of the Allied forces, starting in the Peski area and building a saliant towards Bakhmut/Artemovsk.

[I just realized that, in this extended literary metaphor, the Russians are the mice! But that would make General Zaluzhny the Nutcracker; and President Zelensky the Harlequin doll.]

In Dima’s opinion, this breakthrough is not just a tactical advantage for the Russians, it is “unfixable” for the Ukrainians. Those trenches and fortifications, which they spent 8 years building, have finally been cracked open like a ripe nut (which Dima pronounces as “gnat”). In his view, a Ukrainian counter-offensive is physically impossible on that front. In general, over the course of this war, the Ukrainians have proven themselves incapable of any kind of real, strategic counter-offensive on any front, they are mostly passive defenders. I personally attribute this to their NATO curators. I believe that if the Ukrainians had been allowed to fight the way they were taught in Soviet times, with NCO’s and other commanders fighting alongside their troops, then they would have done a much better job. NATO crippled them by imposing alien mannerisms of warfare.

“It Was A Very Hard Nut To Crack” (ETA Hoffmann)

Western MSM disagrees, of course; they think the Ukrainians are doing a dandy job, and about to launch massive counter-offensives on two fronts. For example the International Study for War (ISW) gushes that the Ukraine has begun “actively shaping the course of the war for the first time…” In other words, up until now Ukraine has been passively volleying back Russian hardballs, but now, for the first time, showed some agency in painting their own animal shapes onto the battlefield. There is a grain of truth in this claim. In the sense that Ukraine’s well-publicized intentions to re-take Kherson, did force the Russians to move 30 BTG’s from the Donbass to the Kherson line. But Westie hopes that this was “at the cost of attempts to capture Slovyansk and Siversk in Donetsk Oblast, which [the Russians] seem to have given up on so far,” are delusional. According to Dima, Seversk will fall like a domino after Bakhmut/Artemovsk falls. With some difficulty, the Russians are able to sustain offensives on two fronts; but the Ukrainians cannot sustain a strategic counter-offensive even on one front, let alone two.

Once Bakhmut/Artemovsk falls, everything else goes down like dominos.

That being said, Dima feels that Ukraine, in its own strategic interests, has one chance, and one chance only, left to it, to remain a viable state: Now that it has moved its artillery, there is no going back, and it must double down: Must focus all its forces on the Kherson front and push the Russians back onto the Left Bank of the Dnepr River. In other words, everything else (even the Donbass) must be sacrificed to retake Kherson. It’s their very last Hail Mary pass before the bitter ending to this circus show. Dima’s analysis matches to the debates and chattering one sees in the pro-Ukrainian blogosphere (to the extent that there is any rational non-delusional kind of thinking going on at all within that milieu). It is said that the Ukrainian leadership is deeply divided on this matter: One faction, led by General Valery Zaluzhny, wants to move the heavy artillery and troops back to the Donetsk front, in a desperate attempt to regain lost ground. Another faction, led by Ukrainian Defense Minister Alexei Reznikov and represented in the media by Alexei Arestovich, is prepared, like a painful chess move, to sacrifice the Donbass in favor of Kherson. Whereas Zelensky himself, the Clown-in-Chief, has come to believe that he is able launch counter-offensives on two fronts at the same time.

Meet The Colonels

To help us sort through all of this, we have two Russian Colonels, Viktor Baranets and Mikhail Timoshenko. Both of whom are retired and work as analysts for KP.

Is this for real? is the first question the reporter asks. And next: Or is this just some grandiose bluff on the part of the Ukrainians?

Colonel Baranets
Colonel Timoshenko

Not at all. Zelensky himself has already promised U.S. Congresspersons that the Kherson counteroffensive will take place in August, and will be completed within 3-6 weeks. Like the reincarnation of Julius Caesar Zelensky himself will lead the charge, and then modestly accept the laurels of victory. OR, if he loses badly, then (according to our analysts) he will blame his Generals and sack Zaluzhny, something he has been longing to do for quite some time.

In this simulated war game, Colonel Baranets will play for the Ukrainian General Staff. He is qualified to do this, since he himself was born in the Ukraine, in the Kharkov Oblast, and he is familiar with the Ukrainian officer class and their mentality. Colonel Timoshenko will play for the Russian side.

Baranets: I am hunched over this enormous map, studying our plan for the counter-offensive, and I am thinking: Are we not perhaps playing the fools, having already for the past month been announcing to the world our plan to throw our troops to the South. Whatever happened to military secrecy, cunning, and surprise? I just think it was stupid to let the Moskali know where we were planning to attack, and even our timeline.

Timoshenko: When I learned about Ukraine’s preparation for the counter-offensive, my first thought was: Have they lost their minds? Even the pigs are laughing in their sties, over this so-called “stratagem”. This is the first time ever in military history when politicians and generals have shown all their cards to the enemy, even before the game commences.

Soviet General Vatutin studies a map.

Baranets: As a General, I condemn all bombastic promises to conduct an offensive. That sort of PR will cost the lives of thousands of our Ukrainian soldiers. However, as a Politician, I understand that this counteroffensive is not just ours, but also belongs to the entire Western world. And for the sake of this victory, the West will send us twice as many tanks, cannons, and shells. Not only that — it’s a pretty cool way to terrorize the people living in Kherson and Melitopol; to sow panic. They will be afraid now to apply for Russian passports and vote in the referendum. They will know that once we return, we will punish them.

Timoshenko: Oho! How very well thought out, in the purely Bandera manner. Those people living in the liberated territories are saying, more and more every day: Kherson and Zaporozhie were never supposed to be included in the Ukraine, that was a mistake. And once the counteroffensive has been broken, there will not be any doubt left in anybody’s mind. The Crimean scenario for Kherson and Zaporozhie will become irreversible at that point.

Scenario #1: The Attack On Kherson

Baranets: Things are going badly for us on the Donbass front, we are falling back, and our losses are horrendous. We need to pull off some kind of victory, otherwise our army will simply flee from the trenches.

Timoshenko: True. In the Donbass you guys are making a lot of noise [literally “snarling”], but then you still run away. Where do you think you can achieve some success?

Baranets: The best plan is to advance on Kherson. And here we have many different options…

[to be continued]

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12 Responses to Ukraine War Day #164: Why The Ukrainians Need To Take Kherson

  1. S Brennan says:

    Thanks for this commentary, the slaughter will continue until, like Vietnam, an honest leader like Gerald Ford is willing to shoulder the burden of a loss that belongs to others. In the case of former-Ukrainia, the Clinton/Cheney/Obama/Biden Administration [singular intended] are the culprits in all this misery and yet like Carter, they will be cleansed of all sin and held in the highest honor.


    • yalensis says:

      Sadly, that is probably true. They will walk away from the slaughter, just brushing the dust off their shoulders, and have libraries built for them.


    • moon says:

      All those evil Democrats? Misguided? With the exception of Cheney they all are. Why don’t you add Bush junor? After all he demanded Ukraine should be rewarded for having joined his war on Iraq with a NATO membership.

      Bush wasn’t as brilliant as Trump? The GOP still missed the Tea-Party revolution to set it on the right path?


      • S Brennan says:

        The reason I omitted Bush is not because carry water for him, quite the opposite, I have so little respect for him that I like to remind everyone that Jr wasn’t really President..Cheney was.

        The reason I omit Trump is because his term was a 4 year long coup. Trump was effectively prevented from accessing presidential power by the 3LAs and their minions in the media. Trump a good or bad president ? We’ll never know, he was never allowed to be president.


        • yalensis says:

          Couldn’t he have fought back, though? AS POTUS, he must have wielded at least a little bit of power (?)


          • buratino says:

            Annie Coulter said somewhere around the inauguration in 16 was :

            The only thing that can destroy the Republic now is nepotism.

            Wish You Were Here…


          • S Brennan says:

            Yalensis, Trump did fight back, so did Salvador Allende but, when the security state wants you gone, you go, one way or, the other.

            I mean, look at the TV networks, they’re completely discredited, nobody watches them anymore and yet they go on as before, how is that possible if they were not state organs? Pravda and Izvestia, under Brezhnev, were more independent than CNN/NBC/Fox are today under the 3LAs.


        • moon says:

          Trump a good or bad president ? We’ll never know, he was never allowed to be president.

          S Brennan, Yalensis and me tended to disagree on the topic. I was as amused by Trump’s naughty performance during the election as anyone else. Would I vote for him based on that? Hardly. Had I been American, I’d given up to vote at all, surely I wouldn’t voted for Hilary. Which means in 2016 I might have joined the ultimate American majority in 2016. 40% non-voters?

          You feel Trump choose his advisers more wisely then Bush junior? He couldn’t act? Well, he did extensively advertise his many oval office signatures. Didn’t he?


          • S Brennan says:

            Hmmm, I take it you wish me to think little of you in that you wish me to believe that you are taken in by appearances. Don’t take this as a complement but, I don’t think you are as dumb as you seek to make yourself appear.

            In 2020 my favorite candidate was/is Tulsi Gabbard not Donald Trump, however, the DNC repeatedly changed the rules, first one way, then back again and then again in order to prevent her from being heard. Those DNCers/DCers who opposed Gabbard are also the same people who have for the last 30 years been enamored with EVERY SINGLE US-WAR, they are also the most vehement critics of Trump. Guilt by association, yeah.

            Sorry to say, you don’t get what you want in this world. When I don’t have childish notions about who’s the best or, who’s worst or, the lessor of two evils, that is, as I say childish thinking. As Biden/frmr-Ukrainia is making absolutely clear to the most lacking of observers, the most important thing in 2016 was would Obama’s neo-colonial wars continue uninterrupted under Hillary. They did not because she was defeated by Trump.

            In the not too distant future, an awful lot of frmr-Ukrainians will be free of Obama’s neo-colonial chains..because…wait for it…Hillary was not elected.


            • moon says:

              S Brennan. The day Tulsi Gabbard will make it into the White House, I will be dead.

              you wish me to believe that you are taken in by appearances.
              Not sure what’s on your mind concerning appearances? The obvious difference between Trump’s and Obama’s outward form, appearance and behavior? Or something indicative of Trump’s vision and quality that seems to escape me. Resulting from misjudging him? I disliked the politics of both in the foreign relation field, the domestic are none of my business but I am not a fan of the GOP standard formulas in that context …

              By the way, I never had any use for compliments. Some people don’t understand that.
              Generally as outside observer on the fence: Ever since I watched the US politics and election campaigns, it felt a huge circus that is basically, as all in America, to a large extent about money, honey. So any president you get, is a president that is supported by circles that then get jobs and influence and the legislation they like in the respective administration. I am not a fan of the work of lobbyists and super-PACs & “Citizen United”.

              Beyond that, it feels both parties are struggling. … Or maybe only the Democrats, since Trumpism, with or without Trump is the GOP’s future.

              I read the blog of a US female lawyer on a criminal case I followed closely, and clashed with her in minor ways first, then heavily watching her reading non-existent matters into an AAVE speech she clearly was unable to understand. Didn’t want to understand, wanted to read something into it, already on her mind? One of my two censorship experiences on the US web.

              It feels Jeralyn is a member/supporter of the Democratic Party. At least, she visited and covered the 2008 Democratic National Convention in Denver extensively.


              I checked her election tag, and searched her site via that tag with Google for Tulsi Gabbard. Zero results. She disliked Obama’s choice in 2008, and she does not want to see him in office again. Does Biden himself want it, or the people around him who profit from having him in office? But Tulsi Gabbard never made it into her perception horizon.



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