Why is it that Russian soldiers become outraged that they are treated like cannon fodder, are even told that they are meat, and their response is to make a video? Who do they think is going to see the video and fix things?
A Russian soldier surveys his camp after a Ukrainian strike. Finding the gas tank is a priceless moment.
Two more Russian refineries on fire. Probably just a big ole coincidence that a bunch of refineries have combusted spontaneously. Krasnodar is east of Crimea.
I wonder if this huge fire in Moscow was caused by residents starting fires to stay warm because the heat is off.
We do know what caused these fires.
This is a sobering analysis of the military situation in Ukraine now and for the year ahead by the Twitter user Tatarigami. It emphasizes that while a defensive posture is the best plan for 2024 for Ukraine, it creates problems too — such as deteriorating morale.
Here is a snippet:
When it comes to mobilization challenges, the fundamental truth is that it is hard to join an army that is facing a myriad of setbacks. While media narratives may emphasize the destruction of the Black Sea fleet as a substantial victory for Ukraine—a viewpoint our team agrees with—the perspective of soldiers in the trenches paints a different picture. The everyday reality remains marked by a lack of personnel and ammunition, and an inability to counteract enemy artillery and Airforce, perpetuating the perception of an unending struggle for the nearest tree line. This situation makes prospective recruits view themselves as mere placeholders, tasked with dodging grenades dropped from drones or incoming projectiles from tanks and artillery. Consequently, the enthusiasm of people to voluntarily join the troops is waning.
Another uncomfortable truth is that the casualties endured by Ukraine during the Bakhmut operation and the counter-offensive in the south continue to haunt many Ukrainians. For instance, amid the Bakhmut operation, there were reports of individuals being dispatched to Bakhmut - the epicenter of the most intense urban battle in 2023, after undergoing only a basic, one-month training. Although obtaining precise numbers to determine the frequency of such occurrences is almost impossible, rumors and accounts of minimally trained individuals being sent to the semi-encircled Bakhmut began widely circulating in society. While Bakhmut initially unfolded as a success story for Ukraine, with Russians sustaining significant casualties, at times reaching a ratio of 1:7 or 1:10, the situation swiftly changed. Once Russian forces managed to seize Ukrainian flanks and disrupt supply routes, the casualty rates almost equaled. Essentially, Ukraine's most skilled and motivated soldiers were exchanged for Wagner soldiers mostly recruited from prisons. When considering the context that Ukraine's demographics are considerably smaller than Russia's, the loss of Bakhmut, despite the unacceptable human toll for Ukraine, takes on an even more significant and distressing dimension.
The reputation of certain Ukrainian generals has plummeted to the point where they are now likened to Russian counterparts known for deploying careless frontal assaults. This situation is exacerbated by the lack of accountability for such failures or misguided approaches.
Here’s an analysis by Def Mon about the change in military command.
I disagree with his suggestion that political involvement has no place in the war. There is no such thing as a war that has no political objectives or considerations. Politics is always intertwined with armed force in wars. That doesn’t mean politicians should be making tactical decisions, but it would be naive to think the military is just going to get a free hand.
This is not how it's been working. Several times the military decided to withdraw. That later got overruled by politicians. Severodonetsk and Bakhmut are two examples. I dont think it's healthy for the military to be run that way.
Ukraine did not fight in Bakhmut because it was the best strategy or to kill of wagner. They fought there because the politicians did not want to let it go because it wasn't popular to lose a city and they thought it would look bad in the eyes of the west.
Hopefully this will help get the Republicans to pull their heads out of their asses.
The delegation is reported to be Abigail Spanberger, D-Virginia; Jason Crowe, D-Colorado; Zach Nunn, R-Iowa; French Hill, R-Arkansas; and Mike Turner, R-Ohio, who is chairman of the House Intelligence Committee.
This is why House Republicans need to quit playing dangerous games.
Tucker Carlson has posted his interview with Putin.
Vlad the Impaler claims that Hitler was provoked by Poland into invading and starting WWII. Does Putin hate Poland so much that he is willing to give Hitler — the boogey man in Russia’s triumphant Great Patriotic War mythology — a pass on starting the war? I guess so.
You can find the interview online if you want to listen to a long drawn-out string of lies. The BBC fact checks the interview here.
Much is also being made of Putin’s leg, which he pushes back down as if it has a mind of his own. IANAD but that looks like a neurological issue to me.
In another part of the interview Putin makes fun of Carlson for having once been rejected for a job with the CIA.
Avdiivka only gets worse. Unless something changes, it’s just a matter of time before Ukraine has to withdraw from the razed city.
This is an interesting phone conversation between a Ukrainian soldier and and the wife of a Russian POW. It says a lot about the Russian attitude of resignation to their lot in life and just doing what they are told.
Norway steps up.
Ukraine can’t have enough air defense. The more the better.
Armenia steps up.
Finland steps up.
My big takeaway from this is how much of a step up the F-16 seems to be for Ukrainian pilots and how the necessary support personnel are also being trained. That last part is very important. It isn’t very sexy, but it’s crucial.
* Western instructors speak highly of Ukrainian pilots, saying that "Ukrainian pilots are very skilled" and extremely motivated.
* The stage of retraining Ukrainians on the F-16 is proceeding as planned. Not only pilots are being trained, but also ground personnel, mechanics, and support units — "a pilot or technician is a small cog in a big system."
* Ukrainian pilots are "very impressed." The F-16 has simply exceeded their expectations.
* "The F-16 is a new generation aircraft, a more digitalized aircraft, with many systems and programs that need to be introduced during and before the flight."
* The retraining program is the same whether it is in the United States, Denmark, Greece, or Turkey as the partners have discussed and agreed upon it.
Rest in peace.
This is what “liberation” by Russia looks like.
Kherson continues to be relentlessly shelled. Even during funerals there is no peace.
A few glimpses of Ukraine’s cultural and natural heritage.
A deteriorating 150-year-old building on Taras Shevchenko Blvd, a main road in downtown Kyiv. Shevchenko was Ukraine’s foremost poet from the 19th century.