Since the mass shootings recently have taken the Ukraine/Russia mash-up from the headlines….but while we are focused on a renewed gun debate the war goes on….and on……
I too have been remiss on my reporting on this conflict…so I will begin with a NATO prediction….
NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said the military alliance must be prepared to support Ukraine for the “long haul.”
“We just have to be prepared for the long haul,” Stoltenberg said. “Because what we see is that this war has now become a war of attrition.”
Over three months into the war, the military situation is not looking good for Ukraine. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Thursday that Russia and the Donbas separatists control about 20% of Ukraine’s territory, including the Crimean Peninsula, which Moscow took in 2014.
How goes the war for Ukraine and its struggle……
As soon as they’d finished burying a veteran colonel killed by Russian shelling, the cemetery workers readied the next hole. Inevitably, given how quickly death is felling Ukrainian troops on the front lines, the empty grave won’t stay that way for long. Col. Oleksandr Makhachek left behind a widow, Elena, and their daughters, Olena and Myroslava-Oleksandra. In the first 100 days of war, his grave was the 40th dug in the military cemetery in Zhytomyr, 90 miles west of the capital, Kyiv. He was killed May 30 in the Luhansk region of eastern Ukraine where the fighting is raging. Other graves also showed soldiers killed within days of each other—on May 27, May 10, May 9, May 7, and May 5, per the AP. And this is just one cemetery, in just one of Ukraine’s cities, towns, and villages laying soldiers to rest.
President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said this week that Ukraine is now losing 60 to 100 soldiers each day in combat. By way of comparison, just short of 50 American soldiers died per day on average in 1968 during the Vietnam War’s deadliest year for US forces. “This is one of the critical moments in the war, but it is not the peak,” says Gen. Viktor Muzhenko, the Ukrainian Armed Forces’ chief of general staff until 2019. “This is the most significant conflict in Europe since World War II. That explains why the losses are so great. In order to reduce losses, Ukraine now needs powerful weapons that match or even surpass Russian weaponry.” Concentrations of Russian artillery are causing many of the casualties in the eastern regions that Moscow has focused on since its initial invasion launched Feb. 24 failed to take Kyiv.
Ukraine had about 250,000 men and women in uniform before the war and was in the process of adding another 100,000. The government hasn’t said how many have died in more than 14 weeks of fighting. Nobody really knows the number of Ukrainian civilians who have been killed or how many combatants have died on either side. Western analysts estimate far higher Russian military casualties, in the many thousands. Still, as Ukraine’s losses mount, the grim mathematics of war require that it find replacements. With a population of 43 million, it has manpower. Muzhenko says Zelensky’s admission of high casualties would further galvanize Ukrainian morale and that more Western weaponry would help turn the tide. “The more Ukrainians know about what is happening at the front, the more the will to resist will grow,” he notes.
How much longer can Ukraine hold out?
President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said this week that Ukraine is now losing 60 to 100 soldiers each day in combat. By way of comparison, just short of 50 American soldiers died per day on average in 1968 during the Vietnam War’s deadliest year for U.S. forces.
Among the comrades-in-arms who paid respects to the 49-year-old Makhachek at his funeral on Friday was Gen. Viktor Muzhenko, the Ukrainian Armed Forces’ chief of general staff until 2019. He warned that losses could worsen.
“This is one of the critical moments in the war, but it is not the peak,” Muzhenko told The Associated Press. “This is the most significant conflict in Europe since World War II. That explains why the losses are so great. In order to reduce losses, Ukraine now needs powerful weapons that match or even surpass Russian weaponry. This would enable Ukraine to respond in kind.”
Concentrations of Russian artillery are causing many of the casualties in the eastern regions that Moscow has focused on since its initial invasion launched Feb. 24 failed to take Kyiv.
Retired Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges, the former commanding general of U.S. Army forces in Europe, described the Russian strategy as a “medieval attrition approach” and said that until Ukraine gets promised deliveries of U.S., British and other weapons to destroy and disrupt Russian batteries, “these kinds of casualties are going to continue.”
Not to worry the US is here to see that it continues and we will throw money, good after bad, at Ukraine (that is taxpayer funds needed here for our growing problems)…..
Since the outbreak of the war, the U.S. has been showering Ukraine with more than $4 billion in pledged security support within the first month of the conflict alone. Most recently, Congress passed and President Biden signed a $40 billion aid package for Ukraine much of which goes toward military assistance through September: that’s more than $100 million per day.
Just look at the problems that Ukraine is making worse….
The United States, as the near-unanimous vote to provide nearly $40 billion in aid to Ukraine illustrates, is trapped in the death spiral of unchecked militarism. No high speed trains. No universal health care. No viable COVID relief program. No respite from 8.3% inflation. No infrastructure programs to repair decaying roads and bridges, which require $41.8 billion to fix the 43,586 structurally deficient bridges, on average 68 years old. No forgiveness of $1.7 trillion in student debt. No addressing income inequality. No program to feed the 17 million children who go to bed each night hungry. No rational gun control or curbing of the epidemic of nihilistic violence and mass shootings. No help for the 100,000 Americans who die each year of drug overdoses. No minimum wage of $15 an hour to counter 44 years of wage stagnation. No respite from gas prices that are projected to hit $6 a gallon.
The permanent war economy, implanted since the end of World War II, has destroyed the private economy, bankrupted the nation, and squandered trillions of dollars of taxpayer money. The monopolization of capital by the military has driven the US debt to $30 trillion, $6 trillion more than the US GDP of $24 trillion. Servicing this debt costs $300 billion a year. We spent more on the military, $813 billion for fiscal year 2023, than the next nine countries, including China and Russia, combined.
We are paying a heavy social, political and economic cost for our militarism. Washington watches passively as the U.S. rots, morally, politically, economically and physically, while China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, India and other countries extract themselves from the tyranny of the U.S. dollar and the international Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication (SWIFT), a messaging network banks and other financial institutions use to send and receive information, such as money transfer instructions. Once the U.S. dollar is no longer the world’s reserve currency, once there is an alternative to SWIFT, it will precipitate an internal economic collapse. It will force the immediate contraction of the U.S. empire shuttering most of its nearly 800 overseas military installations. It will signal the death of Pax Americana.
At what point do the American people stop following morons and sycophants and make Congress understand that their bribes will do no good……it must be all about this nation and let the rest go straight to Hell (as for as I am concerned)…..
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