After months of feigned confidence and optimism from both the West and Ukraine’s senior military leadership, cracks are beginning to appear. During Ukrainian Commander-in-Chief General Valery Zaluzhny’s recent interview with the Economist, Ukraine’s desperate need for additional arms and the consequences for not receiving them was made very clear.
From “Extending Russia” to “Demilitarizing” NATO
Washington’s proxy war against Russia in Ukraine is the manifestation of the RAND Corporation’s 2019 paper “Extending Russia” which recommended US policymakers to “provide lethal aid to Ukraine” hoping it would expand hostilities in eastern Ukraine and “increase the costs to Russia, in both blood and treasure, of holding the Donbass region.”
The paper had hoped that Russian losses in equipment and lives in the Donbass would replicate the costs the Soviet Union suffered in Afghanistan. While the Russian Federation is indeed facing mounting costs in Ukraine, it can easily be argued that the US, the rest of NATO, and most of all – Ukraine itself – are suffering at least as much if not more.
What’s perhaps more important than how much either side is losing in the conflict is how much either side can afford to lose because of their respective military industrial capacity to regenerate manpower and equipment throughout the fighting. After nearly a year of fighting, it is clear that Russia’s stockpiles and military were prepared for this type of protracted, intense, large-scale military conflict. Ukraine and its Western sponsors were not….