Ukraine War Day #221: Liman Falls, Who Is To Blame?

Dear Readers:

So, it happened just as I dreaded. On the Liman front (Krasny Liman, Red Liman), yesterday (October 1), just one day after becoming territory of the Russian Federation, the city of Liman fell to Ukrainian/NATO troops. I have this piece by reporter Vera Basilaya, in which Russian Minister of Defense spokesperson Igor Konashenkov explains what happened:

Russian/Allied troops were fighting hard against the 66th and 93rd Mechanized Brigades of the Ukrainian Armed Forces (UAF), on the Liman front. Nothwithstanding the huge losses they endured, the Ukrainian side (fortified with NATO mercenaries) fought on, enjoying significant superiority in manpower and equipment. The enemy also brought in reinforcements and reserves from other fronts (mainly from Seversk), concentrating everything it had on this one fist. By September 29-30 the Ukrainians had succeeded in surrounding Russian troops in a semi-circular cauldron, with only one road out.

Russian infantry fought like demons to keep that one supply road open; they were successful in dong this, to the extent they could eventually use this road to withdraw backwards to a more defensible line. On the map I show where Ukrainian reinforcements moved Northwest from Seversk to Liman; and the purple arrow shows where Russian troops pulled out in the Torsk direction, which is their secondary line of defense.

Who Is To Blame?

Ramzan Kadyrov is furious about the situation, and does not curb his sharp tongue. He blames a specific person for this setback: Colonel-General Alexander Lapin, who heads Army Group Center in the Ukraine operation.

General Alexander Lapin

Kadyrov: “Colonel-General Lapin placed mobilized LPR units, and other units as well, on all edges of the Liman direction; but he did not provide them with communications or supplies.”

Kadyrov says that he tried to warn Valery Gerasimov (of the Russian General Staff) about the danger in which these Russian troops found themselves, and the risk they faced; but the latter assured Kadyrov that “he has confidence in the regimental talent of Lapin, and it is his judgement that retreat from Liman and the surrounding area, is not even an option.”

Kadyrov goes on to say that, a week after this conversation, Lapin moved his own command HQ to Starobelsk, which is at a hundred kilometer distance from his subordinates, and then himself just settled into a safe spot in Luhansk. Kadyrov believes that Lapin’s negligence and the absence of an “elementary military logistics” is the cause of the failure, and the reason why Russian troops had to give up so much territory once again:

Kadyrov: “What bugs me the most is not just that Lapin is a no-talent nonentity. But the fact that he is covered by the higher-ups in the General Staff. I myself [if I were in charge], I would demote Lapin to an ordinary private, tear off all his medals, put an automatic rifle in his hands, and send him off to the front line to redeem himself and wash away his shame with his own blood.”

[yalensis: I have no place taking sides here in this Kadyrov/Lapin feud. Because I have no idea who is right or wrong here. Kadyrov intimates that there is some nepotism going on in the Russian High Command, but I don’t know about that either, all I know — and anybody can see — is that some changes are needed. I mean, it’s obvious, from a macro point of view, that Russia is destined to win the war regardless, but does it have to be so much like pulling teeth?]

Root Cause Analysis

On the Weeb Union youtube channel, I saw this comment by an anonymous poster called “D PA”, and I found myself nodding in agreement, I think this reflects my instinctual opinion as well, as to what has been going on here

Commenter D PA:

My own guess is that Putin was trying to fight on a budget way longer than he should have. The troops occupying the territories were enough for defense, but only allied forces like LPR, DPR and Wagner etc were actually conducting offensive attacks, supported by federal artillery and air power. He was convinced he could do the bare minimum, like in Syria etc, but he didn’t realize how wrong that was until the recent offensives. The russians were never going to give up Crimea without fighting tooth and nail for it, which is why the UKR have been stalled outside Kherson for a month now. Fortifying that area took priority, which meant sapping the defenses up north until there were just a couple battalions of paramilitaries guarding the edge of the oblast with orders to withdraw to Oskil river if they came under fire. It’s also possible that the Stavka weighed their options and went ok, well, Kharkiv is right next to Belgorod, so there aren’t long supply lines to worry about. You just have 120k troops drive south and you take Kharkiv back. This should have been the sign that more troops were needed, but Putin’s stubborn and doesn’t want to because mobilization presents a lot of political and logistic problems. So he waited too long. Now Lisichansk has to wonder if the SBU is going to pogrom every russian-speaker they find in Lyman while they wait for those 300K troops to trickle in week by week. Well, that’s my hypothesis anyways, won’t know til after the war how much of that was true, if any.

Update From Kots

Today (October 2) we have this update from war correspondent Alexander Kots. Kots spoke with soldiers from LPR, who assured him they had no intention of retreating from Liman: “Were it necessary, we would have remained there and fought to the death.”

Alexander Kots

However, their commanders were wiser than these hot-heads; knowing that men are more valuable than territory, they gave the necessary order to withdraw. Around midnight they snuck out of the cauldron and and headed off to Torskoe.

Unfortunately, once they got to Torskoe they found Ukrainians there as well, so they had to fight a big gun battle, before moving on “at great speed”.

The enemy’s plan is clear: After achieving such success on the Kharkov front, the NATO forces kept feeling out various other fronts, before finding the weak spot. The place where they outnumbered the Russians 3 or 4 times to 1, and then just went for it. NATO fights in a different way than Russia does. Russia spends a lot of time softening up the enemy defenses with long-range artillery. NATO apparently doesn’t bother with that, just charges headlong into the fray, using infantry and light vehicles to overwhelm the opponent. This strategy worked just as well in Liman, as it had previously in Izyum/Kupiansk. And now the NATO forces have clearly set their sights on Lisichansk, with the goal of winning back all the Luhansk territory that they lost, earlier in the war.

What Is To Be Done?

Well, the answer is obvious, even to an ignorant layperson like myself. You can’t fight WWIII against NATO on a shoestring. In this regard, as Brian Berletic admitted in his last podcast, such analysts as Scott Ritter and Mark Sleboda proved to be better prophets than those who kept claiming that everything was going just fine, just as it was.

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65 Responses to Ukraine War Day #221: Liman Falls, Who Is To Blame?

  1. Aslangeo says:

    Larry Johnson’s Opinions on Liman – https://sonar21.com/if-pr-c

    Key Passage
    The second issue is the quality of battlefield intelligence and Russia’s ability to act on it. Let me present the options for your consideration and discussion:

    Option 1–Russian intelligence knew the size of the Ukrainian force attacking Liman and the Russian Commanding General ignored the intelligence and did not call for sufficient reinforcements.

    Option 2–Russian intelligence knew the size of the Ukrainian force attacking Liman and the Russian Commanding General believed he could hold them off.

    Option 3–Russian intelligence DID NOT know the size of the Ukrainian force and the defenders were caught by surprise and unable to reinforce until it was too late.

    Option 4–Russian intelligence knew the size of the Ukrainian force attacking Liman but Russia did not have the ability to resupply and reinforce the defenders.

    Option 5–The Russians know Ukraine’s intention and allowed Liman to fall–effecting a tactical withdrawal–in preparation for a counter strike that will destroy the Ukrainian force who believes they have the Russians on the run.

    My opinions

    Option 1 – complacency – plausible
    Option 2 – Pride and Arrogance – likely
    Option 3 – Incompetence – very unlikely
    Option 4 – lack of resources through Negligence – plausible
    Option 5 – astute – possible

    Thoughts please

    Like

    • yalensis says:

      Thanks for posting this analysis!
      For what my opinion is worth (not very much), I think Option #4 is the most likely.

      Just for the record, I think Kadyrov is WAY out of line suggesting the use of nukes. That option should never be on the table, except in case of dire emergency; which I don’t think this setback qualifies.

      Like

  2. raccoonburbleca says:

    Yes, you can fight a war on the cheap if the aim is just to harass the opponent, stop him form winning. This is not the case in Ukraine. Russia absolutely has to win.

    But the problem with Putin is that he is basically a lawyer. He is hung up on international law and diplomacy. He wants to make sure he is justified eight ways to sunday. He is focused on trying to get his enemies to negotiate with him.

    We hope now he has put all that aside and listened to the voices all around him telling him to get this done. 

    The Ukraine situation is hugely dangerous for the whole world. The west is acting with incredible stupidity and irresponsibility. The risk of nuclear war has never been greater. Yet doing nothing is not an option. The risks cannot be avoided.

    The resources must be committed to get the job done.

    Oh, look, I am telling the worlds most powerful person what to do. tr

    Like

    • yalensis says:

      Agree 100%, racoon. From your lips to his ears!

      For Russia this is an existential struggle, no less than for Ukraine.
      If NATO wins this war, then: Putin will be removed, Russia will be dismembered, and we will see somebody like President Navalny selling off Russia’s mineral wealth to Exxon oil for pennies to the dollar. Like Khodorkovsky tried to do.

      And that’s what this is really all about, ain’t it?

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Beluga says:

    Well, most pundits seem to be agreed, this has been a Rusian shit show of epic proportions, whatever the cause, wherever the blame is to be laid. And it gets worse. Putin leegally crossing his “t”s and dotting his “i”s means that the Duma is due to approve the incorporation results of the four referenda on Tuesday, 4 Oct. Then Putin can act if he has any plan, that is. Wow, impresive, huh? Meanwhile, it’s rock and roll UAF. Where in hell is the damn Russian airforce? The TOS-1A’s, some damn soldiers, tanks, artillery, Bueller? Nowhere to be seen. Bureaucracy, and the leading-from-behind general rabbit (Lapin) that Kadyrov lambasts, all reek of soft living.

    Essentially, the RF forces are tied hand and feet by individual incompetents and legalistic niceties. The time for action is now, or forget about it. Shit or get off the pot. Cannot Putin as president make an executive decision to start deploying his forces prior to the formal Duma vote? Let’s face it, the US president and his inner cabal can. But Russia sits there twiddling its thumbs wondering whether it’s time for another ex-lax or not.

    As for that useless “analyst” Martyanov, profesor of dull drab long-winded boring videos, wherein he lets us all know he’s a genius and the rest of us are dopes who know nothing of military matters, what a complete waste of time he is! I have both physics and engineering degrees and think I can grasp a concept without studying it for decades, and thus to get some old fart lecuring away as to the awesomeness of Russian feints, strategic retreats to draw Ukies into traps, ha ha, etc — well it was all bullshit he uttered after all, and not enlightening whatsoever. Just excuses. If Putin got off his duff, the entire Ukrainian power grid could be off line tonight, and the head offices of the Ukrainin public services in Kiev terminated with prejudice at the same time. But here we are with Russia waffling around, and all the top military brass doing the CYA conga.

    Dear god, What an unholy mess. No sugar coating it, it’s been disastrous this past month, and especially for civilians in Izyium and Liman who get to meet nutbar nazis up close and to be then tortured and offed for colluding with the enemy and being traitors to Ukraine.

    Not good enough. At all.

    Liked by 1 person

    • michaeldroy says:

      I agree – the videos are tedious and he is extremely arrogant. The written texts are much better.
      On Kharkov and Liman he isn’t even considering the alternative that these are defeats for Russia.
      Which makes it more annoying is that he is 100% right on this.

      Like

    • You’re spot on about Martyanov. Can’t get through his long-winded videos, basically a waste of time. But this is true for videos in general, be them Martyanov or Duran: 60 minutes or even 2 hours of blathering on endlessly making the same talking points over and over–who has time for it? You can read twenty times faster than somebody flapping their gums.

      Liked by 3 people

    • joey_n says:

      My issue with Martyanov generally was his ideas that
      1. American people are generally less Russophobic than Europeans (American Exceptionalism? Ignorance of CIA indoctrination?), and that
      2. The European people voted for their politicians and henceforth deserve them (are elections in Europe no less rigged than in the USA?)

      I have stopped following ‘Smoothie’ as a result. All I can say is, I have not heard or seen idea 1 being espoused by the other Andrey (the Saker) within the last three months, so he still has some integrity for me and I still read his site religiously.

      Like

      • yalensis says:

        My impression of ordinary Americans is that (a) they are just as Russophobic, if not more so, than Europeans; but (b) more skeptical of media propaganda than Europeans appear to be. Hence, it is easier to convince them that they are being gaslighted, because they know that everybody is always trying to gaslight them.

        Speaking of Russophobia: Once this war is over, should there be a grand peace treaty on the scale of Versailles, then Russia must insist in one of the clauses of the grand treaty:

        Clause Number whatever: Henceforth, no Hollywood movie or TV show may ever again use Russians as the automatic bad guys.

        Without accepting that clause, no peace treaty can ever be signed.

        Like

        • peter moritz says:

          But, but…it was so easy to identify the bad guy. As soon as he or she, in the case of the attractive bad girl, started to speak, you knew their character. That would get so confusing with the new rules in place. Think of the discombobulated audience.

          Like

          • yalensis says:

            According to the treaty, they are still allowed to have bad guys with a Slavic accent. So long as they make it crystal clear, to the audience, that these are UKRAINIANS!

            Like

            • peter moritz says:

              Hmm…I think you overestimate the intelligence of the folks who watch that sort of movie. Ukrainians or Russians, same difference for them. If it sounds slavic, it is always Russians.
              So, no, the treaty clearly has to incorporate slavs as the “no bad people ever”.

              But the solution is already extant: All Chinese are bad. So only Chinese and maybe Arab speakers can be the movies go to bad guys and gals.
              And the Germans are always the stupid ones now, after what they permit politicians to do to the country, without expressing their opinions clearly, by stringing those guys and gals from lampposts.

              They followed like sheep the corona nonsense measures, and now they follow the NATO policies to the letter to their own industrial demise, finally achieving what Morgenthau always planned for.

              I really hope they have to wipe their arses with treebark, sitting on a toilet with frozen water, covered in a parka and pants insulated with newspaper… that’s going to teach them.

              Like

              • yalensis says:

                Since Russia and China so friendly now, the Russians will include in the treaty that “Chinese can’t be bad guys either, in your stupid movies.”

                So, Hollywood will go, “Okay, Serbians are always bad guys!”
                And Russia will go, “NO! We must also stick up for our Serbian little brothers.”

                In the end, Hollywood will have to make up fictional countries to be the bad guys. So, for example, noble CIA agents or SEAL commanders will report, “Sir, our Intel says that baddies from the country of Blipblapia are preparing a dirty bomb, this could be the greatest crisis ever for our country.”

                “No worries!” said the grizzled CIA Colonel. Our quirky nerd hacker will take 3 seconds to break into their highly-encrypted Blipblapa communications network, to disover the plan. Then we scramble our special Woke Commandos to find and disarm dirty bomb…”

                Like

  4. michaeldroy says:

    I can only see Russian success here.
    A lot of confusion about the goals.
    Russia has no intention of taking all of Ukraine – remember that is Kiev propaganda.
    Winning Land is not the goal – again that is Kiev propaganda.
    Killing lots of Ukrainians and wiping out equipment at little cost to Russian (and now LPR/DPR ) troops and civilians is the goal.

    Liman has been another big success for Russia if you count the bodies, not the stupid press articles.

    Russia’s goals are demilitarisation and de-nazification so that all citizens in current or former Ukraine can live safely without fear of another ATO or other attacks like the shelling of civilians in Donbas or the 2 shellings of refugee convoys that each killed 30 odd civilians travelling to Russian controlled areas.

    Another thing Konashev said yesterday – Russia wiped out another 2 Himars.
    You can’t do that unless you get the Himars firing and giving their position away.

    The low key “Ukraine are achieving success” PR from Russia is deliberate and brilliant. Bring it on.
    And whatever happens we don’t want Russian troops chasing Nazis and Himars all over W Ukraine.

    Liked by 1 person

    • yalensis says:

      Yes, I can see this argument, and this dimension. But there is another dimension, which is the importance of control over roads, railroads supply hubs, etc. (I learned something about that from following this war!)

      So, it’s important not just to deplete the enemy, but also to control strategic points on the map.

      For example, on some other blogs I could see people dissing Ukrainian gains in Liman: Oh, it’s just a tiny town and nobody lives there, who cares about it?

      Who cares about it is both sides. Due to the fact that he who controls that road out of Liman controls supply routes fanning out in several directions.
      Same deal for Izyum: apparently it is a major hub, whence he who controls it, controls supply routes and can fan out in several directions.

      Having lost these hubs, Russia must basically have a do-over and recapture them again. It was a lot of work to capture them the first time; it will be even more work to capture them the second time. But it must be done.

      Like

      • michaeldroy says:

        Not sure I understand how a point on the border line gets to be a major supply hub. It is the end of the line. It only becomes a major supply hub once you advance beyond Liman.
        And if Ukraine does that then all routes through Liman just get taken out one morning.

        Like

        • yalensis says:

          I reckon it depends where the major roads are and also railroads, that sort of thing. So maybe Liman isn’t a hub after all, because it did seem there was only that one major road out of it. I think Izyum was a hub though, because that’s what everybody was saying, earlier in the war. I remember Yury Podolyaka really pounding on about Izyum and how it controlled freedom in several different directions. And how it was such a big deal when Russia captured it. But then when the Ukrainians took it back, everybody was yawning, “Oh, cares about Izyum…”

          Anyhow, this is the job of generals and colonels, right? It’s their job to decide which towns on the map are important for their geography alone; which for their connectivity; and which towns can be easily sacrificed, because it just isn’t worth the lives of soldiers. Thank goodness I don’t have to make that decision!

          Like

  5. BM says:

    Just a gut reaction:

    Kadyrov: “What bugs me the most is not just that Lapin is a no-talent nonentity. But the fact that he is covered by the higher-ups in the General Staff. I myself [if I were in charge], I would demote Lapin to an ordinary private, tear off all his medals, put an automatic rifle in his hands, and send him off to the front line to redeem himself and wash away his shame with his own blood.”

    Sounds to me like Kadyrov has likely put his finger on it. As I say, just a gut reaction. It wouldn’t surprise me to hear if Lapin (in addition to not in place of what Kadyrov alleges) has some personal issues – wife divorcing him, father dying of cancer , or whatever. Anyway he sounds like he is unfit, ought to go.

    Like

    • yalensis says:

      If I were Shoigu, I would give Lapin’s job to Kadyrov and challenge him: “Okay, buddy, it’s yours, let’s see what you can do!” And I bet Kadyrov would be the most motivated man in the whole world!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Cortes says:

      According to Alexander Mercouris, Kadyrov’s criticism was misdirected: the general in charge of the forces in Lyman wasn’t Lapin, but someone else (who has been replaced):

      https://theduran.com/after-russia-announces-union-with-four-regions-nato-rejects-ukraine-membership-bid-uk-tory-government-heading-to-oblivion/

      Like

      • yalensis says:

        Oh, how very awkward!

        Like

        • Cortes says:

          From moonofalabama:

          Russian Telegram channel Operatsiya Z: Voenkory Russkoy Vesny on Kadyrov’s accusations against Lapin (October 1, 2022):

          ‼️🇷🇺 Statement by the fighters of the “O” group: regarding Ramzan Kadyrov accusing the commander of the Central Military District Aleksandr Lapin of the retreat from Liman, in the interest of justice, it is necessary to refute untruths:
          All the conclusions of the emotional text of the head of Chechnya are based on incorrect information: General Lapin DID NOT COMMAND THE DEFENSE OF LIMAN and did not SIT OUT IN THE REAR.

          ▪️It is extremely wrong to blame the retreat from the Kharkov direction on the general who did not lead the defense of that sector, but was thrown at it WITH A SMALL PART OF HIS TROOPS as reinforcements in the last attempt to correct the most difficult situation at the front.
          ▪️Aleksandr Lapin never sat in the rear. This can be confirmed by everyone who has ever encountered him. Be it Syria, be it the Ukraine, where almost every fighter of the “O” group knows this. This is probably the only group commander who has been in the battle formations of his troops since the beginning of the operation. Therefore, the statement that Lapin was holed up in Lugansk is not true.
          ▪️Of course, it is necessary to look for the guilty, but blaming everything on the commander whose area of ​​responsibility was a completely different sector of the front is a gross mistake, from which in the end it will not be possible to draw the right conclusions.

          Fighters of the “Otvazhnye” group

          Posted by: S | Oct 2 2022 17:17 utc | 19

          Like

  6. Stevelancs says:

    This is an American ex-military guy who offers his opinion. I find him very insightful …
    https://readingjunkie.com/2022/10/02/lyman-debacle-nato-is-really-bad-at-maneuver-warfare/

    Like

    • yalensis says:

      Thanks for the link, it’s very interesting.
      I mean, he says that Ukrainian forces amounted to 10,000 to as many as 15,000 (which is consistent with what I have been reading in other sources). Then he says they suffered catastrophic losses. Then he says that some 200 Ukrainian soldiers were killed in the process.

      While I decry all deaths and never would discount the value of any human life (except for neo-Naughties, it goes without saying), I personally would not count 200 out of 15,000 as “catastrophic”. I mean, given Ukrainian recklessless, that kind of number is probably perfectly acceptable to them, in return for seizing a valuable hub. What am I missing here?

      I do agree that the Russian escape from encirclement was brilliantly done, so a big WHEW!!! for that.

      Like

      • The Inimitable NEET says:

        This was referring to the attack on Liman as the LPR and DPR forces were retreating, not the total casualties during the entire siege.

        Like

  7. peter moritz says:

    The principal goal as I see it was first, after the refusal of NATO to negotiate a new security arrangement, and the guarantors to push Ukraine towards implementation of Minsk, to push Kiev to negotiate, one last attempt with the push towards Kiev.
    That did not work through the interference of BoJo so the next step was to push Ukraine forces out of Kiev, and grind down the army, which was successful until NATO, after the destruction of most of the original equipment, started to supply newer weapons systems, and likely started to push mercenaries into Ukraine.

    At that point it was clear that a new approach was needed, and mobilizing nonprofessional soldiers was only possible under federal law if Russia itself was threatened. Hence the move to make the areas under attack part of Russia itself.
    Aside from that, Russia has little interest in central and western Ukraine, except to prevent any future trouble spots from appearing there. So the goal is still, to grind down the army, which by now is more a NATO then a Ukrainian force. And this needs more boots on the ground now, and the possibility to inflict more damage to still existing Ukrainian infrastructure that is obviously used to get NATO equipment and personnel to the battlefield.

    As to Kharkov area and Lyman – from what I gather more of a PR victory for NATO, with quite extensive and expensive losses for them, especially in the former case, Russia giving up what had insignificant strategic value (apparently Lyman is also no longer populated) and tying down enemy forces that now have to maintain the occupation of the area.

    As I said, Russia is with the exception of the newly acquired provinces not interested in gaining land, but in correcting a status that should have been solved immediately after the secession of Ukraine in 1991, when Ukraine should have been forced to return lands that were given to it to secure their membership in the USSR, especially the Donbas and Crimea, that after 1991 always wanted to exit Ukraine and become independent.
    An example is Canada, where it always was made clear to Quebec that in case of separation it would have to return Labrador and any other areas that were ceded to it for governance, being a part of the Canadian federation.

    Like

    • yalensis says:

      Excellent analysis, Peter. My only quibble being that the lack of population living in Liman does not make it of “strategically insignificant” value.

      Again, and this may sound harsh, but Liman’s strategic significance did not consist in its people, but rather in its location as a hub of various supply roads.
      With the Ukrainians now controlling these roads, it will be more difficult for Russian forces to supply their own front-line units. (For example, will have to use back roads or dirt roads, instead of major paved roads, etc.)

      Like

      • BM says:

        I’d imagine that Russia will retake Liman within a week or so, in which case the AFU will have little or no chance to exploit the hub; in any case the roads are probably under Russian firepower, at a guess.

        It’s fantastic news that Liman had no civilians, if that is true. They must have been evacuated at the start of the offensive. In that case, it is truly Russia’s to exploit! In the long run pure loss for Ukraine except for the significant PR.

        Like

  8. Montmorency says:

    Russia has been grinding down the West, both militarily and economically.
    Our gun and ammunition stocks are depleted and we don’t have the industrial capacity to replenish them soon.
    Our economies, after 30 years of deindustrialization, received the final hit with the boomerang effect of the sanctions (most still don’t realize how hollowed we are, they’ll soon feel it).
    And know it’ll be war, likely coming Winter.
    What Putin has carefully been orchestrating since February 24 is simply magisterial.

    Like

    • yalensis says:

      Thanks, Montmorency, you are spot on about the grinding. I plan to have a piece on that tomorrow.

      Like

    • peter moritz says:

      It becomes clear that the war is used, maybe even planned so in advance, to bring the EU under USA control,, maybe even transfer production to the USA and prevent the EU from ever joining a Eurasian partnership with Russia, China and by extension what now is the SCO.

      https://sonar21.com/will-europe-break-with-the-united-states/
      “How about Europe breaking with NATO? Or, more simply put, the break up of NATO. Up to this point Europe has embraced the delusion that Russia cannot function economically without a European market. The last six months of Russia’s Special Military Operation have proven that the opposite is true–without Russia’s key resources Europe is a dead economy walking naked into a frozen winter.

      https://www.moonofalabama.org/2022/09/the-us-is-winning-its-war-on-europes-industries-and-people.html
      (with links included to some of Michael Hudson’s analysis)

      “The U.S., while also going into a recession, will profit, as it had planned, from the European catastrophe.

      The Handelsblatt, a business daily, reports that Germany companies are moving production to North America.

      Washington is attracting German companies with cheap energy and low taxes.
      The German government is claiming it wants to prevent that but that is impossible without ending the energy sanctions.

      The New York Times is of course happy with the situation. As European producers get out-priced from their markets the U.S. is taking up their slack:

      Factory Jobs Are Booming Like It’s the 1970s
      U.S. manufacturing is experiencing a rebound, with companies adding workers amid high consumer demand for products..

      The U.S., with the help of European politicians, is waging a war against the people of Europe and their standard of living. It is now on the verge of winning that war.”

      https://www.moonofalabama.org/2022/09/the-war-on-germany-just-entered-its-hot-phase.html#more

      “That war, hidden behind the U.S. created Ukraine crisis, is designed to destroy Europe’s manufacturing advantage compared to the U.S. It is more likely though to strengthen the economic position of China and other Asian economies.

      I have argued that Germany must open the Nord Stream II pipeline which can bring Russian natural gas to Germany without crossing other countries’ territory. It must also allow Siemens to repair the defect Nord Stream I compressors. It is in fact inevitable if German’s industry is to survive.

      Others have come to similar conclusion and decided to sabotage the pipelines to make their re-opening impossible”

      Like

      • yalensis says:

        “The U.S., with the help of European politicians, is waging a war against the people of Europe and their standard of living. It is now on the verge of winning that war.”

        Exactly! Thank you for posting those links, I fully agree with above analysis. Having exhausted the resources of its enemies, the USA is now turning to parasitize its allies. I would feel more sorry for the European middle-class if they knew what was happening to them, but they don’t seem to be aware of the vampire latched at their neck.

        Like

  9. John Thurloe says:

    Your article is very good. Final judgement should be witheld until there is more evidence. If Russia mounts a serious counter-attack, all will be forgiven. However, to so disappoint Russian public opinion is a matter unto itself.

    Like

  10. the pair says:

    on kadyrov: he’s usually right. like VERY usually. it sounds like he’s basically saying “this guy is a clueless desk jockey who knows some theory but has never been in ‘the sh_t’ like us. that’s more of an american thing so sack his ass.”

    on putin: from what i’ve read the russian forces (i’m assuming that includes the donbass militia guys and such) were outnumbered 3:1 at the start of all this. they did fine so i’d say “complacency” is a prime suspect here. given the amount of ordinance they’ve thrown at the ukies i doubt it’s a “cheapness” thing. he has always been a bit of a bean counter but that’s because he realizes the rest of the world still cares about laws and such as opposed to the west whose collective “law” is “We Will Burn Your World and Eat Your Children!!!!!” (i wish that was more of an exaggeration.)

    on the peanut gallery (which includes myself, obviously): i get the impatience to a degree but it’s odd when you think about the last time this region was at actual kinetic war. actually, think about the famous storming the beach at normandy: these folks would be saying “look how many of you guys got shot and blown up! what a bunch of losers!” it would be 6 months after pearl harbor and they’d be all “why isn’t it ooooverrrrr!?!?!? just drop some a-bombs already!!!”

    i get the others complaining about martyanov (i’ve never watched his videos as i have little free time and the cigar and scotch thumbnail is a flashing red “old know-it-all guy who has steak for breakfast” sign) but i’ll give him and the other doughy white guy commentator types one thing: they aren’t from the ritalin generation.

    tl;dr – liman and other setbacks will be reversed at some point. the kamikaze western tactics aren’t sustainable…especially once the reserves start showing up.

    Like

  11. Ben says:

    I’m finding it increasingly impossible to view this entire ‘Special Military Operation’ as anything other than an overly clever plan, that probably never have worked in any event, but which is here being fundamentally badly run by corrupt incompetents.

    The comments here seem to be filled with a lot of ‘brilliant; this is good for Russia actually’. No it fucking isn’t. It’s a fucking embarrassment and a travesty. Not just in general, but particularly for a city that just voted to join Russia. If you’re going to commit to standing and fighting anywhere, surely it would be in a place like that. Maybe you pull back everywhere else, but you fucking hold in a place that just threw in its lot with you.

    ‘Well, you see, the plan is to keep falling back while killing Ukrainian troops in the open and taking apart their military infrastructure’. *THEN WHY ARE THE UKRAINIANS STILL ADVANCING?’. I have been being assured for half a year that the Ukrainian military had been fundamentally broken. That it had no tanks, no fuel, no trucks, no rail transport, and few professional soldiers left. Than why does it keep advancing?

    Hey, someone riddle me this: whither the ‘cauldrons’? Anyone remember that word? Because I sure do. It was the sexy term for months after the war started. Russia was going to slice and dice the Ukrainian army up into a series of kettles and cook them into submission. Where did any of this ever happen on anything other than a local, tactical level? Following the maps daily, Russia had many, many opportunities to do this, but never did. Because it never committed the troops to it. Right now it’s Ukraine that is forming, or almost forming, all the cauldrons. Russia keeps having to run away, and Ukraine keeps retaking territory without a fight.

    Hell maybe Russia just doesn’t have the troops left to commit. I’m increasingly convinced that much of the Western ‘propaganda’ narrative was correct. Try this on for size: Russia didn’t conduct some brilliant Soviet deep operations calculated blitz at the start of the war. Instead they rushed a bunch of troops in thinking Kiev would fall over like a house of cards, and when that didn’t happen Russia got a bunch of its troops surrounded and killed, especially elite units like the VDV (which is why you haven’t heard about any of these troops in months; they’re husks of their former selves now). Nemesis follows hubris. Russia actually believed all its tripe about Ukrainian being a fake country that no one would fight for. Russia then shifted to clumsily bashing its way block by block through places like Mariupol, and other cities it bled to take, claiming all the while it had broken the back of the Ukrainian military and that its enemy couldn’t significantly maneuver. And yet the Ukrainians keep maneuvering.

    Russia claims it’s only suffered about 5,000 dead (regular army, obviously the militia are some multiple of that). But the calling up of 300,000 conscripts is much easier to explain if in reality Russia has had its own back broken and its real losses are much closer to the numbers the West gives.

    There’s only two ultimate outcomes to this war: either this is an epic Russian success, all part of a calculated long-term plan that will see the Ukrainian army exhaust itself and halt before being rapidly rolled up by a counter-attacking Russia, and most of the claims from the West are propaganda lies that will be swept away under the harsh light of reality. Or the Western narrative is fundamentally correct, Russia has massively fucked up, incurred huge losses, and this will go down in history as a screw up for the ages. How do you manage to attack a country with a population a quarter of your size and not even manage to defeat their army in the field? And the longer this bullshit continues, the more Russia retreats and the more Limans keep happening, the harder and harder it will be to reach any conclusion other than the latter.

    There’s a whole ecosystem of people, Moon of Alabama, Larry Johnson, Dreizin, Andrei Martyanov (the king of ‘everything is fine’), etc that I think I’m just going to stop listening to. Are these erudite rebels bucking the status quo, or are they just a big insular circle-jerk constantly referencing and reinforcing each others nonsense narratives?

    Like

    • peter moritz says:

      I am so sad to have to read that the SMO doesn’t meet your expectations as a viewer. Maybe you should have a talk with the director to voice your opinions about a war movie that strays so very far from the typical American script of chucks and aw chucks. I would also advise asking to have your entrance fee reimbursed. I know how hard it is to pay for something and then go away crying, disappointed bitterly.
      If I were any closer to you, I would lend you my shoulder to cry on. There, there, wipe off your tears and maybe watch the Patton movie. That should calm you down.

      Like

      • Ben says:

        Fuck off you imbecile.

        Like

        • peter moritz says:

          Tsk, Tsk, such a temper…

          Like

        • yalensis says:

          Come on, Ben, you’re better than that! You had a well-written and passionate comment, then you ruined it with your childish “eff you”.
          I am going to take Peter’s side on this, even though he was sarcastic, only because you lost your temper and turned into a child.
          Now I want both of you to shake hands like grown-ups. And then go smoke a cigar together.

          Like

          • peter moritz says:

            No cigar though. Strict nonsmoker here.
            It always amazes me what folks judge success by. The strategic value of Lyman and Kharkov, different from Kherson, was obviously judged to be of minor importance. That should be clear by the quality and/or the number of troops stationed there to defend this territory. If that is the case it absolutely does make sense to withdraw from that area, let the Ukranians occupy and fix manpower to protect it, and in the process get clobbered with heavy losses of men and machinery.
            To judge tactical retreats as losses or victories is simply nonsense, and does say nothing about the overall strategic outcome, but it does say something about the quality of the leadership to rather retreat, than fix troops for unimportant areas or sacrifice them for defense.
            Russia’s goal was not to occupy or gain territory outside the now incorporated areas (with the exception of maybe the Black Sea littoral), it specifically was from the start to demilitarize Ukraine.
            To achieve that, you do not need strategically rather burdensome areas.

            Like

            • yalensis says:

              This is true. But what irks me is how the lack of manpower causes Russia to miss out on valuable opportunities. For example, the Ukrainians moved most of the troops defending Seversk, up to attack Liman. Leaving Seversk vulnerable. Speaking as an Armchair General: If the Russians had troops to spare on each front, they could have just slipped in and taken Seversk before the Ukrainians could even blink!
              It’s like in a hockey game, the other team left the goal completely open, and even their worst shooter could have just skated by in leisurely fashion and delivered the puck. But there was no player available, because they were all sitting in the penalty box!

              I personally wish that Russia had taken North Korea up on their offer to supply soldiers for the front. Could you imagine the look in Ukrainians eyes seeing 100,000 Koreans rushing at them like madmen with fixed bayonets?

              Like

              • peter moritz says:

                The lack of troops, and relying mostly on the militias for fighting at the front, is definitely a problem now. After most of the old equipment was destroyed, and large numbers of Ukrainian forces were destroyed, the equipment was replaced by more modern equipment, and obviously a large number of mercenaries supporting or even leading, as footage from Kharkov suggests.

                I don’t know if this scenario was anticipated by Russia, I think it likely was, leading to the referenda and now joining with Russia of the new provinces.
                Which makes it possible under Russian law to send reserve and conscripts into the war zone, accompanied by more advanced weaponry.

                Like

          • Ben says:

            No. He responded with mockery and sarcasm, and didn’t even attempt to respond to any of my points (very likely because he can’t). So I chose to be even more succinct in my own response. And I’ll reiterate: he can fuck off.

            The Russian war effort is currently a fucking embarrassment, and with every town they concede without a fight who knows how many people, including people who just voted to join Russia, are being thrown to the wolves and will be ‘filtered’ as collaborators. It’s shameful.

            Like

            • peter moritz says:

              No. He responded with mockery and sarcasm,… yeah, so what? How else to respond to a hodgepodge of a jumble of accusations, second-guessings, presuppositions, analysis you seem to pull out of your nether regions, bad-mouthing, etc., just because you feel the war doesn’t follow what you think the plan should be?
              Talk about armchair general, you are a whole armchair army.

              Like

              • peter moritz says:

                And here is a report that is reasoned, without the outright panic that drives Mr. Ben to write a screed …of what is hard to discern, except that it clearly reflects the western mantra that Russia is losing, that Russia is pathetic, that Russian military does not know what it is doing, that Russia is incompetent, a sinkhole, a cesspool…yes, everything is thrown at it including the crapper and the kitchen sink.

                Like

              • yalensis says:

                Thanks for posting. I like Brian Berletic too, he has a logical mind and thinks like an engineer. He is also willing to modify his opinions and adapt, when new data comes in.

                Like

              • yalensis says:

                P.S. in this particular piece, Brian’s talking point which struck me the most is this one:
                When Ukraine runs out of tanks, they have to go begging, cap in hand (schnorring, in other words), for other governments to donate them tanks. If a tank breaks down, they have to ship it back to the donor country, to get it fixed.
                When Russia runs out of tanks, they can build new ones, using their own domestic industry. And if repairs are needed, they can repair them at home, in their own shops.

                Is self-sufficiency not better than dependency, in almost every case? Reminds me of that old children’s story, comparing the house cat, who has to beg her mistress for treats; vs the street cat who is able to catch her own mice. The latter might lead a harder life, but can always depend on herself for survival; vs the former who may be spoiled and caressed but lives in constant risk of abandonment and destitution.

                Like

            • yalensis says:

              I concede that Peter “responded with mockery and sarcasm”, but the important question is: Did he also use metaphor, irony and bathos? If so, that would truly be unforgivable!

              Liked by 1 person

  12. BM says:

    Can you take a look at this link Yalensis?

    According to Martyanov, “Because today Constitutional Court of Russia approved signed documents on four obalsts joining Russia and in this teeny-weeny piece of news that all four oblasts will join Russia within administrative borders which existed since the moment of their creation–you know, in USSR (in Russian). But that is just legalistic mambo-jumbo.

    But when I put the text through Deepl translator I get this: MOSCOW, October 2 – RIA Novosti. The borders of the Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics and the Zaporizhia and Kherson regions will be determined by the borders that existed on the day of their formation and the day of their admission into Russia, the international treaties submitted to the State Duma indicate.

    The Deepl version – while a little disappointing – is legalistically more logical.

    Like

    • BM says:

      Actually the real significance of the text is the Liman was taken after 30th September, therefore was legally considered – according to those documents, whether it is legally valid is another matter – part of Russia from the date of signing i.e. 30th september, therefore the taking of Liman was an attack on Russia. Also of course massive US/UK direct participation in the attack on Liman, therefore direct attack on Russia by US/UK.

      According to the ruling of the Constitutional Court, the new territories are considered to be incorporated into Russia from the date of signing the agreements (30 September), they will retain their current names, the leaders of the DNR and LNR will become heads of republics, and Kherson and Zaporizhzhya regions will become governors.

      I wonder whether the loss of Liman was intentional (abstention of providing sufficent air support and reserves) just to get the desired casus beli quickly?

      PS – Maybe the text means that the borders have [later] to be determined, using the following grounds for the determination:

      “The borders of the territory of the Donetsk People’s Republic shall be determined by the borders of the territory of the Donetsk People’s Republic that existed on the day of its formation and the day of its admission to the Russian Federation and the formation of a new entity within the Russian Federation,” one of the documents reads.

      The Donetsk People’s Republic was formed when the constitution was constituted, and arguably comprises the borders declared in the constitution (or alternatively the territory occupied at that moment). The borders that existed on the day of its admission might mean the actual occupied territory on 30th September. Maybe the text is a legalistic way of laying down a claim to the rest of the Donetsk that has not yet been retaken, which is an obvious point of contention. I’m no lawyer. Either way Liman is still included in the [corresponding LNR] definition.

      Like

    • yalensis says:

      Yes, I read that piece, the meaning was a bit ambiguous at first, but various commenters have clarified what it means: The borders of the Oblasts will be those going back to Soviet times.

      In other words, not considering which parts are currently under Ukrainian military control. The whole enchilada, in other words.

      Like

  13. James Lake says:

    I am appalled by Kadyrov and all these doomsayers and crybabies and armchair generals

    Kadyrov needs to act like a leader – you (kadyrov) are in the armed forces and that makes you jointly responsible for any setbacks.

    You are happy to take the victory but not the defeats – that’s not how things work in life

    You are only as good as your weakest member so don’t complain give support.
    Kadyrov needs to act like a grown up and stop the blame game.

    Rome was not built in a day – or by one battle.

    Russia is fighting for its new security architecture against many enemies – with few real friends. It is not easy – Regroup and work harder

    As for criticism of Martynov – he is a big picture guy – doesn’t get into the minute by minute blow by blow aspects of the war – it’s not a football game.

    The message he seeks to convey whether you like his style or not is that this war has many pieces moving at the same time and Liman is a setback but is it the most important this that happened last week?

    Blowing up pipelines for example is part of this war
    The elections we are seeing in Europe are part of this war
    Economic problems in EU and UK are part of this war
    Referenda is part of this war

    Check back in a months time and we shall see what is happening

    Like

    • yalensis says:

      Those are very good points, James, thanks for helping to put things in perspective!

      Like

    • Imagine what WW II (or the Great Patriotic War, if you will. Does anyone know what the Nazis called the conflict?) would have been like if the Internet had existed then? “Why haven’t we won yet?!? Aaargh, we’re doomed!!!!” That would be a good subject for an alt-fiction book, if someone hasn’t done it already.

      Like

      • yalensis says:

        Jeez, that would have a shit-show if the internet had existed in those days, can you imagine all the blogs and tweets, and everybody covering every tiny thing 24/7? Especially with Goebbels writing all their tweets and crowing about every German victory… The anti-Nazi side would get so demoralized and just have to give up and surrender after the first week.

        By the way, that’s a great question, what the Germans themselves called WWII aka The Great Patriotic War? They must have had a special name for it. I have no idea.

        Like

        • peter moritz says:

          We did not have a name for the war against Russia unless you call it “Operation Barbarossa” (initially called Operation Fritz, didn’t know that before..)which was the official designation by the Wehrmacht.
          https://www.britannica.com/event/Operation-Barbarossa

          Like

          • yalensis says:

            Barbarossa, of course!
            Red Beard? Was he any relation to the infamous serious killer Bluebeard?

            Like

            • peter moritz says:

              No, he was one of Germany’s most beloved kings and emperor of the Holy Roman Empire. He was also ar of a few legends, especially that the
              Kyffhaeuser where he sleeps inside the mountain till Germany needs his help again…like just right about now

              https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frederick_Barbarossa

              Like

              • peter moritz says:

                Damn keyboard swallows letters.
                “He was also part of a few legends, especially that of the
                Kyffhaeuser”

                Like

              • yalensis says:

                Tell me about it, I just noticed I typed “serious killer” instead of “serial killer”, LOL. Although I am sure that Bluebeard was a very serious man, in his own twisted way.
                Barbarossa, on the other hand, sounds like a nice guy.

                Like

          • BM says:

            The Germans called it “Drang nach Osten” at the time (including before it started). They justified it by the need for new “Lebensraum”.

            Like

            • peter moritz says:

              Drang nach Osten was just the name of the policy of the NSDAP, to expand towards the east occupied by lower folks like Slavs, who obviously didn’t need that much space or any at all, and some of them could be left alive as slaves to the Master Race.
              The war itself, as I am aware, and should know as most of my relatives at the time in the late 40’s had been participants, as soldiers from Norway to Africa to Italy, and they only addressed it as “Der Krieg”, the War. No name ever.

              Like

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