Struggle for political power amid shocking losses in Ukraine
I have pondered and analyzed the war in Ukraine many times and those articles are available in the section of “News and articles” on my website.
Please, come on peace
In my article of November 22, 2023, I talked, among other things, about “Peace initiatives – Lost opportunities for peace”.
The US/Biden administration together with the UK/PM Boris Johnson played the primary role in sabotaging the March 29, 2022 tentative peace agreement between Russia and Ukraine. This fact of events is fully confirmed in the recently published article “HOW THE CHANCE WAS LOST FOR A PEACE SETTLEMENT OF THE UKRAINE WAR — AND THE WEST WANTED TO CONTINUE THE WAR INSTEAD” by Professor Hajo Funke and General (ret.) Harald Kujat (Berlin, October 2023). A commentary article (to the above mentioned) is “HOW THE United States and Its NATO Allies Sabotaged Peace Between Russia and Ukraine” by Larry Johnson, November 14, 2023.
Alexey Arestovich, former advisor to Zelensky, confirmed what western media refused to report, on December 1: Russia made great concessions but demanded neutrality in a peace agreement in March 2022 but that became sabotaged by the US/UK. Now 300,000 Ukrainian soldiers have died in this unnecessary war.
Sergei Lavrov, Russian Foreign Minister also said on December 2 that “Former PM Boris Johnson came to Kiev and said, “let’s fight a little more, NATO & EU say that we are obliged to support AFU”. Lavrov claimed that initial agreements were reached in late March in Istanbul. However, the situation changed after Johnson’s visit.
The leader of the “Servant of the People” in Ukrainian parliament, Ukrainian David Arakhamia made a real bombshell, on November 24, by admitting publicly “Boris Johnson came and said, that we will not sign anything with them and will fight!”. Arakhamia confirmed that Boris Johnson essentially forbid the peace deal! The war could have ended in early 2022! “Russia’s goal was that Ukraine keeps its neutrality. This was the main thing for them: they were ready to end the war, if we accepted neutrality, like Finland. And we will make a commitment that we will not join NATO.”
After more than 500,000 troop deaths and wounded in Ukraine, German General Harald Kujat, Ukrainian party leader David Arakhamia, Ukrainian ex-president advisor Alexey Arestovich and Russian FM Sergei Lavrov confirmed publicly: if Ukraine agreed to remain neutral country not joining NATO, Putin was ready to end the war at the end of March 2022, this was the main point. THE QUESTION NOW ARISES AS TO WHO WILL TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR A HALF A MILLION DEAD UKRAINIANS AND RESUMING THE WAR IN UKRAINE?
Larry Johnson put it businesslike: “The West Pushed Ukraine to War and Kiev Now is Paying the Butcher’s Bill.”
Plenty of foreign mistakes
The western media, even the mainstream media has started publishing articles and comments about possible “change of narrative”, Ukraine is no more winning and perhaps Russia is winning!
According to the British Economist, for the first time since February 2022 it looks as if Russia could win, due to Europe’s war fatigue and shocking lack of strategic vision. In addition, the Economist scares readers with a terrible future – Hungarian Prime Minister Orban and candidate for the post of Prime Minister of the Netherlands Wilders will not allow the EU to allocate money to Kiev and the European Union will “lose its trust” because of this.
“Endless war: Ukraine between courage and despair”: Der Spiegel published an article on the cover that if Kiev does not agree to a truce, it will be pointless to fight for years. “Now, as the second winter of the military conflict begins, it becomes clear: the hope for a new turn of events was in vain. The war will continue until any resources of one of the parties are exhausted. Apparently, Ukraine’s human mobilization resource will be exhausted. During the two years of war, the Russian Armed Forces destroyed about 1 million enemy soldiers.
Dr. Sönke Neitzel, professor of military history at Potsdam University and the leading academic authority on the modern German armed forces, described the logistics as a “nightmare” and said it could take at least 15 years before Germany was ready for war.
Europe is not prepared for a war with Russia and is in danger of being “washed away” in a conflict, much as the Holy Roman Empire was broken up by Napoleon, Germany’s pre-eminent military historian has warned. At a high-level defense conference in Berlin, several German generals also suggested that NATO might be unable to win the “first battle” in a defensive war on its eastern flank, because it would struggle to ship sufficient numbers of troops and equipment to the front line quickly enough.
“NATO can hold out in Ukraine longer than Russia,” said the current British Foreign Secretary David Cameron recently. Thus, Cameron confirmed that NATO is at war with Russia in Ukraine. He probably didn’t know that Stoltenberg and others categorically deny this?
Der Spiegel: Russia’s President “Vladimir Putin has every reason to be pleased with himself in the confrontation with Ukraine and the West.” After 21 months of war, “no retribution is in sight,” and “the Kremlin ruler’s calculations are working perfectly so far.” Russia’s economy is growing due to increased military production and high oil prices that have withstood sanctions.
Der Spiegel, Eine Analyse von Ann-Dorit Boy , 02.12.2023, 09.31 Uhr
Präsident Putin sagt, sein Land sei »stärker geworden« seit dem Einmarsch in die Ukraine. Er hat leider recht: Seine halb totalitäre Herrschaft und sogar die Wirtschaft sind stabil. Deshalb denkt er gar nicht ans Aufhören.
NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg urged to prepare for bad news from Ukraine in an interview with the German television company ARD, December 3. Stoltenberg said that Ukraine is in a “critical situation” that could become even worse due to insufficient assistance from the West. He also admitted that NATO members were unable to meet Kiev’s increased demand for ammunition: “We need to prepare for bad news.”
And the last but not least: western military and finance aid is drying up.
Political struggle for power in Ukraine
On the domestic scene of the political theater in Ukraine, the drama of power struggle continues and Zelensky seems to be paranoid about the military leadership and warns commanders to stay out of politics.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stated that military commanders and the political arena are not in the same space, demonstrating that his power is under threat from within his own ranks. Ukraine’s commander-in-chief of the General Staff, Valeriy Zaluzhny, has no war plan for 2024 and, therefore, must resign, said Verkhovna Rada deputy Maryana Bezuglaya.
Her comments were preceded by statements Zelensky gave British tabloid The Sun on November 20, warning for Zaluzhny to stay out of politics. “If a military man decided to do politics, it is his right, then he should enter politics and then he can’t deal with war” the Ukrainian president told the outlet. According to The Sun, there are rumours that Zaluzhny will be a potential rival to Zelensky, if he decides to pursue a political career.
General Zaluzhny stated earlier that the conflict with Russia was at an impasse and that a breakthrough was unlikely. He wrote in the Economist on November 1 that “the war is now moving to a new stage” and that “what we in the military call ‘positional’ warfare or static and attritional fighting, as in the First World War, in contrast to the ‘maneuver’ warfare of movement and speed” is now the norm and admitted that “There will most likely be no breakthrough.”
The general enjoys widespread popularity in Ukraine. His words have influence. For this reason, Zelensky fears the repercussions of Zaluzhny revealing the actual situation in the conflict and, even more dangerously, pursuing a political career and taking complete state power. Zelensky has recently sacked one of Zaluzhny’s deputies in charge of special forces, showing that the Ukrainian president is slowly trying to weaken the general’s power and influence.
In recent weeks, the Ukrainian president’s clashes with other authorities in Kiev have become public. It was reported that Zelensky fears a civil uprising against his government along the lines of the Maidan protests that ousted one of his predecessors, Viktor Yanukovych.
Now, even the major of Kyiv, Vitali Klitschko, has publicly criticized Zelensky as a dictator. “Because of Zelensky, the country is sliding towards authoritarianism”, Klitschko said in an interview with Spiegel. According to him Ukraine is turning into a country “where everything depends on the mood of one person.” Klitschko argues also that Zelensky is failing as a war leader and will soon be on his way out of the job. – “Today the only question is whether Ukraine continues to exist at all”
No doubt, the military-political leadership of Ukraine realized that the war was lost and the first to realize the lost war, were Ukrainian generals at the high command level. Zelensky is battling to stay in power in the face of internal and external pressure. Zelensky even cancelled the 2024 presidential elections despite protests from Washington, which sees the democratic process as a condition to continue selling its financial support for Ukraine to the American public.
With US support for Ukraine slowly diminishing in favour of Israel and mounting domestic backlash, it will deteriorate badly on Zelensky’s ability to continue a costly and futile war against Russia. Although diminished US support weakens Ukraine’s ability to wage war, it will strengthen Zelensky’s potential competitors, including Zaluzhny.
The “last issue of offense vs. defense” had become a breaking point between Zelensky and Zaluzhny and now Zelensky has finally (in December) announced a full change of posture to a defensive one, with the mandate to begin building vast fortifications and defenses all throughout Ukraine.
In the case, things go badly wrong, Zelensky seems to have a route and place to escape … Florida in America! The piece of news tells that the Biden administration will relocate the Zelenskys to the US, Vero Beach, Florida for the start of “new life”. Note the date of the paper, September 20, 2023.
As to the order, already accepted by the Ukrainian parliament, regarding total mobilization, Zelensky has not yet signed it. The reason is interesting: in the first batch of 140,000 recruited Zalushny will get automatically an extra support troop for political purposes and Zelensky is afraid of this.
Massive Losses of Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU)
Ukraine is preparing for total mobilization covering old men (up to 70y) and teenage boys as well as women (fight to the last Ukrainian). By 1 December, all employers must submit lists of persons liable for military service to territorial recruitment centers. New recruitment ads (below) even show old men with the words: “You’ve already lived your life. Go to the front!”
On December 3, the first mobilized teenager of 17y died in the ranks of AFU, more killed teenagers will be seen in the near future.
The silence of “western human rights organizations” is deafening in this case. What the hypocrisy and double standard!
Some shocking data have come up during last few weeks revealing more and more gloomy situation on the battlefield. Number of killed and wounded Ukrainian soldiers has exceeded a million-border line.
According to Rybar, nearly 1.5 million Ukrainian persons are not available for military service today.
On December 1, the Russian Ministry of Defense held another monthly conference, which among other things is aimed to sum up the interim results of the ongoing special military operation in Ukraine. General Sergei Shoigu revealed the losses of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU) over the past 6 months: over 125 thousand servicemen and 16 thousand units of various military equipment in six months of the so-called counteroffensive.
“The mass mobilization in Ukraine, the supply of Western weapons and the deployment of strategic reserves by the Ukrainian command did not change the situation on the battlefield. These desperate actions only increased the number of casualties in the units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine,” said Army General Sergei Shoigu.
The Kiev officials do not reveal their losses. According to open sources, the losses of the AFU since the beginning of Russian military operations exceeded 500 thousand servicemen, only including killed, heavily wounded, captured by Russians and those considered missing. However, this number does not include servicemen who are temporarily out of service. The total losses of the Ukrainian Army exceed 1 million people.
During the autumn 2023, the Russian Forces went on the offensive and by the beginning of December Kiev can no longer hide its defeat. Russian forces recently achieved important tactical gains in different regions along the whole frontline, threatening Ukrainian forces with an upcoming large-scale offensive. Moreover, Russian Forces have resumed massive air strikes around Ukraine.
The losses of the Ukrainian military forced Zelensky to acknowledge defeat. He officially stated that the Ukrainian counteroffensive has ended, without achieving its goals, the Armed Forces of Ukraine are going on the defensive.
Kiev finally decided to start building a new line of defense following the example of the famous Russian “Surovikin line” in the Zaporozhie region. According to Ukrainian media, this was one of the bones of contention between the president and General Zaluzhny, who insisted on the creation of new fortifications. In his turn, Zelensky opposed such a decision, since it recognizes the failure of Kiev’s “offensive” strategy and the crushing defeat of Zelensky’s media image. Finally, Zelensky understood the reality.
What will happen?
It appears that this tentative map – a Russian view from 2018 – may materialize in the next year.
In a Ukrainian telegram channel “Legitimny”: Everyone realized that now Ukraine cannot win. The offensives have failed, equipment reserves have thinned out, the shortage of ammunition has worsened, public disappointment is off the charts, and no one wants to fight.
Ukraine’s future looks like this: – gradual loss of territories – gradual collapse of defense – increased internal squabbling – financial crisis – social crisis – disappointment – banking crisis – energy and fuel crisis – bankruptcy of many farmers, carriers, etc. – poverty – increase in mortality – increased repression as Zelensky tries to retain power.
The list goes on but there is nothing good. Zelensky chose slow and painful death/ collapse/ chaos for Ukraine. But he could have changed the course of events many times and prevented literally everything that the Ukrainians are now reaping.
When looking at the background behind Ukraine, “END IS NEAR”, the US federal debt is $33,9 trillion and skyrocketing. The last one, please turn the lights off!