25 min read
Why I Study War

by William Thomas

Last year, during a vax resistance dinner at a local home, I sat down on a wooden floor across from a women with whom I was delighted to converse. Over the years, I’d come to admire Linda Though we only spoke in passing, I observed how her quiet spiritual practice informed her respect for life, her community, and herself. Putting aside my empty bowl, I remarked how the discussion around us brought back similarly earnest conversations during off-campus anti-war gatherings in Milwaukee during the ’60’s. Right down to sharing bread while sitting cross-legged on wood floors! But Linda was not into indulging a Woodstock veteran’s nostalgia. Referencing my recently posted piece, in which I’d detailed the logistical impossibility of the United States sustaining a full-on conflict with Russia in Europe, she surprised me with her opening query.       

     “How do you know all this? How do you know so much about war?” Just saying the word, “war” caused her evident distress. As well it should to any civilized person. 

     “The first reason is because it’s in my blood,” I replied. I explained how my ancestors had fought the British at Valley Forge, the Yankees at Chickamauga, and the “Indians” out West. My own navy dad had flown lumbering flying boats in the Pacific, where he’d rescued a ditched Corsair pilot under fire in a Japanese-held lagoon.       

     “I broke the mold,” I went on. On completing Naval Reserve Officer Training during the slaughter in Vietnam, I received orders to report to for flight training in Pensacola. A lifelong dream of flying jets off carriers was in my grasp when I realized that I could not napalm children and resigned my commission.       

     “Another reason I study war,” I told Linda “is geopolitics. What’s happening in Ukraine right now is rearranging the world.” 


Last December, former German chancellor, Angela Merkel boasted that the 2014 Minsk Agreements she had so treacherously signed had given Ukraine “precious time” to “become stronger.” An overly patient Putin was made to look like a durak for trusting the Western globalists who had pillaged his country throughout the 1990s.

     After the same capitalism-infatuted Yeltsin provided the antidote by elevating an unknown intelligence officer to Russia’s highest office, the necons have never forgiven Vladimir Putin for restoring Russia and taking away their toy.    

     “For me, it was completely unexpected. It is disappointing,” the Russian president admitted, after personally apologizing to the widows of Russian servicemen killed in the Donbass. “I genuinely hoped that German leadership expected a settlement based on the principles achieved” during the Russia-sponsored peace negotiations. “It appears to me that nobody planned to live up to these Minsk agreements,” Putin concluded. “They lied to us, and the only reason for these processes was to pump Ukraine up with weapons and get it ready for military action.”

     But the jujitsu blackbelt had thrown a head-fake of his own. Using those same eight years of failed Minsk implementation, his General Staff completely reshuffled and re-equiped Russia’s demoralized post-Afghanistan army into mobile brigades — each equipped with aircraft, drones, missiles, transport and artillery networked through myriad surveillance and targeting platforms. Crucially, two Russian war colleges focus solely on logistics.        While issuing repeated promises never to advance “another inch” eastwards, NATO gobbled up former Warsaw Pact nations on Russia’s borders. After years of increasingly pointed warnings for NATO to back off, in December 2021 Putin issued an ultimatum: Pull NATO forces back to their original boundaries or we will take action. Starting with Ukraine.    

     Washington laughed.       


War is how you compel an opponent to do your will, Carl von Clausewitz wrote in his iconic meditation, On War. Less famously, this Prussian general neglected to add: If you lose, this works in reverse.       

     The 19th century military theorist reminded contemporary neocons how “everything takes a different shape when we pass from abstractions to reality.”  But card-carrying sociopaths without conscience or empathy as staggeringly incompetent and vicious as “Fuck the EU” Nuland, bewildered Blinken, warmongering von der Crazy, “Jungle Josep” Borell, “360-degrees” Baerbock, lying Lloyd Austin, and perpetually angry Biden and Trudeau believe that whatever they believe is reality.    

     Unfortunately for them and for us, war remains the ultimate reality check. Nothing changes geographical boundaries, corrupt governments and shaky alliances more quickly and irrevocably than bullets. Just ask the NVA and the mujahideen.    

     By the same measure, nothing tests a nation’s unity, leadership, industrial capacity, resolve and restraint like a protracted conflict against peer hominids. Unless it’s the decision not to go to war. Known for his battlefield acumen, Japan’s first samurai Shogun, Ieysu Tokugawa, emphasized: “The greatest battle is the one you don’t have to fight.”      

     Before rushing into yet another conflict that will “be over by Christmas,” Sun Tzu advised today’s warhawks to “ponder and deliberate before you make a move.” This philospher general might have been addressing Zelenski and his delusional backers 2,400 years later, when he cautioned against becoming distracted by the “gongs and drums, banners and flags” of your own propaganda, while “ears and eyes” remain “focused on one particular point.”    

     Bad Vlad!    

     Whatever would we do without Mr. P? Consumed by their pathological hatred for the little big man thwarting their last lunge at world domination, unthawed Cold Warriors in the Whitehouse, Whitehall, Ottawa and Brussels appear determined to wage war on their own feverish projections. At least until they can arrange a nuclear “exchange” over the Chinese province of Taiwan. Which happens to produce the microchips in your personal tracking device. Uncle Sugar’s weaponry. And darn near everything else.


Sun Tzu’s classic could have been comparing Biden and Putin when that ancient philosopher-general wrote: The COMMANDER stands for the virtues of wisdom, sincerity, benevolence, courage and strictness. (1) Which of the two sovereigns is imbued with the Moral law that causes the people to be in complete accord with their ruler? (2) Which of the two generals has the most ability?  And speaking of long-term strategy, short supply lines, and inexhaustible resources and reserves… (3) With whom lie the advantages derived from Heaven and Earth? 


“The opportunity of defeating the enemy is provided by the enemy himself,” the oldest treatise on warfare helpfully points out. (Russians add: “Don’t get in the way.”)    “Disciplined and calm, to await the appearance of disorder and hubbub amongst the enemy — this is the art of retaining self-possession,” Sun Tzu (soon-tse), advised today's  zip-lipped Russian leadership. This will freak out your loud-mouthed adversary.    

     And if you really want to win, seize something “which your opponent holds dear” — like the crossroads at Bakhmut, linchpin of the entire Donbass. Then “they will be amenable to your will.”    

     The Russians heartily approve of the showman Zelenski’s bloody-minded insistence on “winning” at all costs on social media. Why decimate your own army in assaulting the most extensive network of minefields, tank traps and mutually-supporting fortifications since those multiple lines of trenches in WWI, when you can simply let the enemy impale themselves on your layered defenses?    

     Just like Br’er Rabbit in the Briar Patch, Russian commanders in Donbass are publicly pleading with a cocaine-fortified, comic actor to please, please, please keep pouring tens of thousands of men into Bakhmut’s “meat grinder”. Until your third cobbled-together army is utterly smashed.


Obviously, protecting “freedom” and “democracy” is paramount for a Kyiv regime that jails its political opposition, assassinates its best peace negotiator, tortures young women and Russian POWs, outlaws independent media, persecutes and desecrates the Orthodox Church, guns down refugees required as human shields, and gets caught skimming at least $400 million in Western aid, while raining missiles and US-supplied artillery onto the city of Donetsk and surrounding towns almost daily since this conflict began in 2014    

At least 15,000 Russian-speaking Ukrainians died in Donbass before Vladimir Putin finally intervened on the eve of their publicly announced extermination at the hands of 20,000 swastika-waving Azov fanatics massing on their borders.    Curiously, while “Valdomort” Zelenski prefers conversing in Russian (because he’s not fluent in Ukrainian), this Donbass native has made speaking, reading and teaching Russian by one-third of his own citizenry a criminal and “terrorist” offense.    

     Keep waving those flags.

WAR 2.30 

What have we learned so far from the year-long, high-intensity conflict in Ukraine? Production, production, production. Drones, drones, drones. Layered air defenses rule. Russian “retreats” can be a trap. Tanks caught in the open are dogmeat. American GPS targeting satellites can be jammed.   Hypersonic missiles are a bitch. (Especially when you don’t have any.)

     Also: Logistics, logistics, logistics. Everyone sees everyone. Fighting artillery with rifles doesn’t work. Hyping false claims and expectations can backfire. The worst time to kidnap reluctant conscripts is in the middle of a war you’re losing badly.

     And: When rah-rah Western politicians with unbroken war records of failure and betrayal offer obsolete, incompatible and ineffective weapons systems lacking spares and ammunition to “keep the war going” into your own graves and their numbered accounts — beware.


Our country and its armed forces today are opposed by almost the entire collective West,” the secretary of the Russian National Security Council has declared. After endless spittle-spewing Western threats to “destroy Russia,” “break up Russia,” “re-educate the Russians” and “git Pootin” — everyone in Russia understands this.


When she announced her Azov-infatuated regime’s latest self-inflicted sanctions — this time against imports of Russian aluminum and steel needed for Canadian manufacturing — Foreign Minister Mélanie July emphasized that the goal of the West’s latest proxy war is “regime change” in Russia.   

     “We’re able to see how much we’re isolating the Russian regime right now, because we need to do so economically, politically and diplomatically, and what are the impacts also on society, and how much we’re seeing potential regime change in Russia,” this tongue-tied globalist dizzyingly declared — inverting reality and ignoring Putin’s consistent 85% approval ratings, while dignitaries representing the World Majority crowd around his globe-trotting Foreign Minister, Sergie Lavrov, for handshakes and photos.


On Jan. 25, 2023, German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock informed the world: “We are fighting a war against Russia.”    “If we add this to Merkel’s revelations that they were strengthening Ukraine and did not count on the Minsk agreements, then we are talking about a war against Russia that was planned in advance,” Russian Foreign Affairs Ministry spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova (zak-har-uva) quickly pointed out.    

     No Russian has forgotten the last time tanks with Iron Crosses crossed their western border from Ukraine. Long before recently declassified documents revealed that some 42 million Soviet citizens died in the ensuing conflagration that destroyed three German armies before the Soviet Army took Berlin — they vowed, “never again!”      

     “The Russians aren’t bluffing,” reminds Benjamin Abelow, author of How the West Brought War to Ukraine. With Russian-hating maniacs in Kyiv and eight Western capitols vowing to destory their nation, Moscow cannot back down.


Like Marine Gen. Smedley Butler before him, Boneface thinks the war racket sucks. Nor is this avowed neo-Nazi impressed by his virtue-signaling countrymen’s blue and gold emojis.    

     “They just think Russia decides to bomb the fuck out of places for no reason,” this Floridian snorts. Moscow’s defensive military operation under UN Article 51 was preciptatated, he correctly states, by “American meddling in Ukraine”.    

     “It’s not a matter of playing an exciting military game,” Muscovite volunteer Nikita Vlasenko-Irsetsky explains from Donetsk, where “everyone knows that, if they back down today, their families will be killed or abused. Nobody harbors any illusions.”    

     “Of course this has been the first armed resistance against globalization, against globalism and Western power structure,” adds Janus Putkonen in “the people’s republics” of Luhansk and Donetsk. Having fought alongside Canadian and American volunteers defending Donbass, Putkonen declares, “Our victories here are bringing hope for all the patriots in the world.”    

     With 85% of world nations refusing to sanction Russia, he appears to be right.


Mark Esper has a different take. “Brave Ukrainian people are doing the dirty work of what we never wanted to do here in the United States,” the fired US Secretary of Defense recently admitted — while enabling American weapons makers to make a killing.    

     “For so many people war is profitable,” agrees a former mercenary on his return from Ukraine. The State Department boasts that US weapons sales have surged by one-third since 2021, topping $154 billion in 2022! 

     Another ex-merc implicates his own Ukrainian officers by complaining that NATO anti-aircraft guns vanished from his unit within days of receipt. As a result of this lucrative sidelne, a former US marine who also fought with the several-thousand-strong  International Legion reveals that Ukrainian commanders don’t have radios, artillery cover or extraction teams for wounded soldiers.    

     “Trucks deliver ammunition, provisions, etc. to the front line, and from there they take out and sell all the loot," human rights activist Larisa Shesler confirms. This is not great for morale. Or winning wars.    NATO belatedly fears that this tsunami of diverted American arms is supplying criminal gangs flooding into Europe and the USA. African authorities have already uncovered Ukrainian arms caches. And Finnish detectives confirm that the world's three biggest motorcycle gangs in Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands and Ukraine are being equipped with “man portable” anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles. What can possibly go right?


Maybe the German army can get in on these after-market arms sales. Since emptying its armories to supply Ukraine, the Bundeswehr has enough ammunition to fight the Russians for one or two days.    

     Ditto the UK. Bankrupted by Whitehall's incentivized purchase of 48 F-35B flying lemons (£80 million a pop and just £90,000/hour to operate), Britain's miniscule military is a knee-slapping Russian joke.    

     Forget France. Their vestigial army is needed on the streets of Paris.        

     As for war-addled Washington, the Pentagon had planned to draw on stocks prepositioned in Europe, which would allow the maritime-oriented US military to sustain a continental war at Ukraine's current tempo for two weeks.    

     But home inventories are dwindling.    

     At the end of January ’23, the Ukraine-fixated US Secretary of State announced “our 30th drawdown of U.S. arms and equipment for Ukraine.” Do it! beg the Russians. Send everything you’ve got and we will destroy that, too. But why stop there? Let your mischievous Commander in Chief drain the last of your strategic oil reserves to score more points with the WEF!     

     If anyone in the Pentagon is studying America’s current derangement as avidly as the Russian General Staff, it’s clear that a fantasized “surge rate” of accelerated production in decrepit US factories will take more than five years to replenish the one-million 155mm artillery rounds tossed into that black hole overseas — one-month of firing at current Russian rates.

     The Marine Corps is also being short-changed. If ordered to wade ashore in distant China, the “first to fight, first to die” will have to pause on Hangzou beaches for three years while the 38 HIMARS scrapped in Ukraine are replaced. In the meantime, if the hard pressed jarheads need to deploy anti-tank and anti-aircraft missiles, they will have to call for additional eight and 18 year timeouts to replace those proven ineffective weapons. They’d be better off repurchasing the stockpiles of Javelins and Stingers confiscated by the Rooskies, who don’t want them.    

     Of course, having ditched their tanks, the reconstituted marines do not intend to storm the Middle Kingdom. Instead, their posture has pivoted toward boarding commercial ships heading to China — and starving the dragon. This might work, too. Shippers grow shy when their cargoes become uninsurable.    

     It wouldn’t be the first time Washington sanctioned piracy on the high seas, as the Greeks and Iranians know. But ocean-dependent Beijing is much more worried about the US Navy, proprieters of the world’s best submarine fleet. At least until 2025. By then, China's fast-multiplying gas and oil arteries, along with the recently opened Amur bridge and similar links, will have further deepened a shotgun marriage to Russia by reorienting  vital sealanes to land corridors immune from blockade. Having frightened every sane government into fleeing the dollar by siezing Russia’s assests, the world’s fading hedgemon can no longer print its way out of debt.    

     All that’s left is nukes.  


Incapable of questioning their own exceptional genius, after losing every war they’ve started against second-tier militaries over the past six decades, the neocons are determined to fight “to the last Ukrainian,” Chas Freeman observes.    

     You mean for money?    

     “We are engaged,” says this retired senior US diplomat, “in a proxy war, and we’re selling a lot of weapons. That makes arms manufacturers happy.” For everyone raking in this bottomless bonanza of destruction and misery, “this is a freebie.”    

     Some freebie! While the West studiously looks away from a junkyard stretching from the Black Sea to the Belarus border, onboard this dying planet the brutal box scores of our latest folly are appalling, grotesque and instructive.    

     Concentrating on protecting their country, instead of looking for trouble abroad, in the 1970s the Bad Russians went all-in on developing an integrated air defense. Today, pilots of aging F-16s, refurbished F-18s and any speed-restricted F-35s that can be persuaded to fly must be contemplating the 401 NATO jets, 221 helicopters, and 3,425 drones removed from Ukrainian skies by those backwards Rooskies. The toll of intercepted Ukrainian missiles is not discussed in polite company.    

     Meanwhile, America's perpetual war planners have neglected ground-based air defenses, depending instead on Top Gun remakes and often grounded jets to achieve air superiority against a chosen enemy with the best proven air and missiles defenses on this wounded planet. According to a widely accepted Russian military tally, by January 2023 some 8,000 Ukrainian armored vehicles, 400 surface-to-air missile systems, 1,000 multiple rocket launchers, and 4,000 artillery pieces had been converted into mangled wreckage. Along with many of their operators.        

     On Mar. 16, 2023, Igor Konashenkov briefed the Russian Minister of Defesne, saying that 8,300 tanks and armored fighting vehicles, along with 4,363 artillery systems and mortars had also been destroyed. In April, Yevgeny Prigozhin, head for PMC Wager Group, claimed that up to 10,000-11,000 Ukrainian soldiers are dying every month. Prigozhin is known for providing accurate figures, and the 400/day AUF loss rate continues to be confirmed by other sources.    

     Except the day before, when a remnant AFU battalion attempted to storm Khromovo, 20 km west of Bakhmut. All 800 troops were killed instantly, apparently by an air-dropped Fuel Air Bomb, which burns out a one-square-mile area.    Still, Washington and its proxy refuses to negotiate. How much energy does this represent? How much pollution? Did someone with a British accent say, Depleted Uranium?    

     Talk about entirely avoidable carnage and waste! At least 250,000 Ukrainian men have died so far — the Russian Ministry of Defense claims 400,000 — along with their country’s future. Plus another 400,000 wounded so severely they will never to return to duty. Casualties among the Donbass militias and their Russian, Chechen and Wagner allies are at least one-tenth of these figures.    

     The familial shock, grief and hardship on both sides of this civil war are not so glibly tabulated.


As for Ukraine’s impending “ultimate victory”…    

     “We do not have ammunition. For us the situation in the East is not good,” Zelensky told the Japanese newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun on March 25. Ukraine’s puppet president forgot to mention how his regime is still using American HIMARS, howitzers and scarce ammunition — along with child-attracting “petal” mines — to randomly kill and maim moms, kids and elders in downtown Donetsk. And most recently in Petrovsky and Lisichansk, far from Ukrainian positions.       

     Disconsolate, displaced and some 14,000 dead Russian and Ukrainian residents are not consoled by the Rules of War, which permit Moscow's forces to demolish apartment buildings turned into strongpoints by NATO advisers extolling the use of “human shields”. By contrast, “Ukraine is targeting civilians for retribution in the east, while its Western backers turn a blind eye,” counters Vladislav Ugolny, a Russian journalist working in Donetsk.    

     “Who did this?” aid workers invariable ask, pointing to the lower floors of shot-up apartment buildings. “Rooski tonks?    

     “Ukraini! Ukraini!” come the angry replies from old men and women emerging from basements with children in tow. Just like Bucha.      

Zaporozhye NPP is a frequent target of Kiev's strikes -lyrics.com.ru


Meanwhile, Kyiv’s American minders continue targeting Europe’s biggest Nuclear Power Plant, jointly operated by Ukrainian and Russian technicians in Zaporozhye (zappo-roje-nee).  After months of shelling, missile and rocket attacks, and repeated amphibious assaults acroos the Dneiper River — apparently aimed at recovering or destroying US nuclear secrets — Nikolay Patrushev has warned Russia’s Security Council that “the consequences of these provocations could be very catastrophic, not only for the majority of the population of Ukraine and Russia but also for Europe. And in terms of their scale, they could surpass the tragedies that occurred at the nuclear power plants in Chernobyl and Fukushima.”    


     Zaporozhye Region administrator, Vladimir Rogov worries that constantly downed and repaired powerlines feeding the pumps cooling multiple reactors are exceeding operating parameters, risking a nuclear meltdown. But on-site inspectors from the Washington’s International Atomic Energy Agency refuse to point inconvenient fingers.

On 25 October 1854, the British Light Brigade galloped grandly into Crimea’s Balaclava Valley, stoked on the glories of war! Until enfilading crossfire from Russian cannons opening up from high ground on each flank, and cannonades firing point-blank into their faces, cut down two-thirds of those 607 saber-waving boys. Along with most of their horses.    

     “It is magnificent, but it is not war,” exclaimed Marshal Pierre Bosquet. “It is madness.”    

     On witnessing this debacle, war correspondent William Howard Russell might have been addressing NATO and Kyiv when he wrote: “Our Light Brigade was annihilated by their own rashness, and by the brutality of a ferocious enemy.”     

     Nearly two centuries later, as soon as Ukraine’s rain-drenched quagmire hardens in late April, a much bigger and even more violent mechanized charge could see eight newly refurbished “storm brigades” comprising some 40,000 mostly ill-trained, poorly led and demoralized conscripts, along with special forces held in reserve — thrown against layered Russian defenses from Zaporozhye to Crimea, without air cover, reliable armor, or effective artillery support.         

     If the night attack in Zaporozhye on April 29 was a precursor, the initial push will commence after dark. Or maybe not. The targeted Russian artillery battalion responded with stunning violence and rapidity, using tanks and artillery — and NATO-designated “second rate” night-vision and thermal imaging — to smash that assault.

     Despite this shoulder-tap from the as yet seldom encountered regular Russian Army, wherever NATO/Ukraine’s last best battalions make their non-optional, London-ordered charges into endless steel rain, the hope persists that the well-protected Chmobiki behind those bewildering salvos will panic and run away, precipitating Putin’s downfall!    

      Alas, hope is not a plan.


After fighting off covetous invaders for centuries, the Russians are experts at war. This time, their well-entrenched front-line troops awaiting whatever comes next are confident in their AI-linked anti-air defenses, artillery, fighters, bombers, drones, missiles, rockets, gunships, glide bombs and surveillance platforms to keep watch, blow up anything that needs blowing up, and otherwise “do unto others before they can do it to you.” A recent field test of “all arms integrated warfare” detected, targeted and wiped out a remnant battalion crossing open ground toward Bakhmut, killing 200 “Ukrainians”.    

     In 4 minutes.

     What if Russian defenders forget to panic? What if devoutly Orthodox Christians prevail over Azov’s Satanic rites and a woke-infected NATO? Will Poland suicidally intervene, precipitating a real war?    

     Like their American and European public counterparts, the Poles have not put “war with Russia” on their to-do lists. For their part, the Russian command has always preferred to absorb and dissipate an attacker's first blow. Before bringing up fresh reserves and launching a devastating counterattack of their own.     

     Anyone who has studied how Russians fight — which apparently excludes every general and political leader in the West — understands that once this last ill-fated charge by perhaps 50,000 undertrained teenagers, old men, and exhausted veterans dispersed across the battlefront will shatter themselves against the mines and projectiles of at least 140,000 front-line defenders holding prepared positions even more formidable than the ones they'd left. When this happens, some 350,000 heavily armed Russians held in reserve could advance south and west virtually unobstructed and unopposed.   

     If they wait that long.    

     Characteristically, the Russians aren’t talking. But Ukrainian soldiers fed up with being needlessly sacrified are on social media vowing to get their hands on Zelenski. They’d better hurry. Following the Kremlin’s last mobilization of 500,000 conscripts and reservists, by mid-June 1 million Russian Federation soldiers are expected to be visiting Ukraine.  


“If you ask me personally, I don’t believe in a big counteroffensive for us. I’d like to believe in it, but I’m looking at the resources and asking, with what?” asks a Ukrainian battalion commander, call sign, Kupol.    

     Among Kupol’s original 500 soldiers with combat experience, 100 have been killed in action. The remaining 400 are wounded. Kyiv admits daily losses of 200 to 400 casualties along several battlefronts.    

     “I get 100 new soldiers,” Kupol continues. “They don’t give me any time to prepare them. They say, ‘Take them into the battle.’ The soldier doesn’t shoot. I ask him why, and he says, ‘I’m afraid of the sound of the shot’.  “They just drop everything and run,” this Lt. Colonel adds. “You’re on the front line. They’re coming toward you, and there’s nothing to shoot with.”    

     Volodymyr, 54, shrugs with the fatalism shared by all frontline solders. “When they drive us to Bakhmut, I already know I'm being sent to death,” he laments. “The Russians keep firing at us, but we don't have artillery — so we have nothing to attack them back with. I don't know if I will return or not. We are just getting killed.”    

     Among another 27-member platoon, only “a few” got out. “The Russians have so many weapons,” Valeriy says. “Sometimes, you hear an incoming every second.” (Confirmed by a journalist there.)  Raw recruits “are afraid to leave the trenches,” a veteran named Dmytro picks up. Shelling is so intense, “one soldier panics, then others catch it.”    

      Dymtro doesn’t blame them. The nerve-stripping noise and gaping shrapnel wounds from massed artillery fire is beyond terrifying. Especially when you’re 16-years-old or 60, yanked off the street, given two or three weeks’ instruction on which end the bullets come out, and deployed into a muddy ditch unable to shoot back at an enemy you rarely glimpse.    

     Do the people who put them there not grok karma?


According to Vladyslav, the Russians are using drone-directed artillery barrages to destroy the houses where the Ukrainians hide, leading to high casualties among the defenders and minimal losses among their attackers. No wonder the “refusers” in Vladyslav’s unit, as well as other platoons, are balking at crossing roads and fields under continuous observation and fire.    

     Just as he feared, when eight of the 25 soldiers in his platoon arrived at a crossroads outside Bakhmut, they were immediately hit by mortars. Within seconds, two of his buddies were killed outright. One soldier lost his arm. Another’s stomach was ripped open. Everyone, including Vladyslav, suffered severe concussion and was pulled out.    

     The position was lost.    

     This goes on day after day after day.


While America’s war industry focuses on over-engineered, big-ticket aircraft and experimental warships that fall apart in daily use, the Russians have learned the value of simple metal tubes equipped with a trigger lanyard. The 10 to 1 Russian artillery advantage helps explain why the chickenhawks in Washington, London, Brussels and Berlin are allergic to battlefields. “What I’ve noticed is that the farther away you get from the frontlines, the more bloodthirsty everyone is,” observes Vlasenko-Irsetsk in Donetsk.


Russia did not want this war. For eight years, while watching American weapons pour into Azov and Right Sector-dominated units, President Vladimir Putin pushed for enforcement  of the settlements agreed to by all sides. In late February 2022, after repeated warnings against NATO expansion were answered by US pledges to give Zelenski nuclear weapons, Putin angered his generals by launching a limited Special Military Operation with some 80,000 troops. Resisting the invaders were Ukraine’s NATO-trained and equipped army of 650,000 regulars and reservists. 

     For the first time in modern warfare, instead of leveling an entire country, American-style, Putin stunned the world by virtually tiptoeing into former Russian territories occupied by ethnic Russians and fellow Slavs. By threatening Kyiv with a lightning advance, he planned to quickly persuade Zelenski to embrace neutrality, concede historically Russian Crimea, and allow self-governance in the Donbass until a (since completed) referendum could be held.    

     Despite costly Ukrainian Army and Azov ambushes guided by American satellites and  surveillance aircraft circling over the Black Sea, in this he was successful.    What the pragmatic Russian leader failed to anticipate was the neocons’ rabid refusal to allow Zelenski to accept the peace agreements they’d already signed!    Tricked again, Mr. Reasonable went away. In his place appeared a towering pissed-off bear — probably a griz — that proceeded to maul Ukraine’s original army in Mariupol and Lysychansk, between March and May 2022.       

   From September to November, NATO-coached Kyiv achieved its first great offensive “victory” in the Kharkov (Kharkiv) region. After rinflciting heavy losses on repeated Ukrainian assaults, the Russians had withdrawn their token troops and territorial guards from Kherson to the more defendable eastern bank of Dnieper — inviting the “victors” forward. 

     It was a trap. Attracting hell from on high, the Ukrainian Army suffered up to 44,000 casualties. After this second reconstituted NATO/Ukrainian army was destroyed in Lyman, at least 2,000 of an estimated 20,000 Polish soldiers masquerading in Ukrainian uniforms were returned home to be buried in fresh cemeteries.    Five months later, cut off from resupply and ordered to stand fast and die, a third jerry-rigged “Ukrainian” army comprising resentful draftees, irreplaceable special forces, foreign mercenaries and ISIS volunteers are being bombed into oblivion inside the last tall apartment buildings they still hold overlooking the western outskirts of downtown Bakhmut.     

     “Why did the collective west start a fight it couldn’t finish?” asks former US Marine, Brian Berletic.    

     Answer: Because they have no skin in the game. 


If Ukraine’s lead comic actor and his Cold War-ossified overseers had listened to Vladimir Putin’s reasons for finally intervening in Donbass, they would know that Moscow’s goal is not to “conquer” another American failed state — and inherit its headaches. Instead, having prepared for a 30-month war, the Kremlin’s oft-stated goal is to prevent Kyiv’s Nazi regime from ever threatening Russia again by “demilitarizing” and “denazifying” Ukraine.    

     Unhappily for the Ukrainian soldiers and civil servants whose monthly salaries are currently being paid by American taxpayers, their distant owners are slow learners. You already guessed it. NATO is currently standing up a fourth and final mongrel army to reenact the Charge of the Light Brigade on an even more sickening scale.


Originally marketed as the path to total victory, American officials now say Ukraine’s over-hyped counteroffensive no longer seeks to expel all Russians from their traditional homelands in the Donbass and Crimea. Instead, US clown Defense Secretary, Lloyd Austin, is predicting astonishing advances up to 30 miles into what is now officially Russian soil.    

     Unfortunately for frustrated Pentagon planners, their long-awaited “spring offensive” is already being dissipated by bad weather and piecemeal assaults. In a preview of coming catastrophes, a preliminary two-day Ukrainian probe near the strategic town of Ugledar cost some 200 soldiers and accompanying vehicles when a drone-recorded column of cast-off NATO armor was caught in the open and decimated by Russian artillery and aviation. US-supplied M777 “wonder weapons” returned fire. But the fragile, high-tech howitzers were immediately targeted by passive acoustic sensors and destroyed by loitering “kamikaze” munitions.     

     By then, Ukrainian brigades husbanded for the big push south to take Melitopol and cut off Crimea had been redeployed north, where their valiant but vain attempts to hold the strategic crossroads at Bakhmut and Soledar cost 50% to 80% casualties in the units engaged.    

     On April 18, Russian multiple-rocket barrages struck Ukraine’s 54th mechanized brigade concentrating near Seversk, while Tupolev bombers smashed the 81st airmobile brigade near the village of Belogorovka with 3,000-pound glide bombs. Outside Rakov in the Kupyansk region, Ukraine’s 14th mechanized brigade was obliterated by massive Fuel Air Bombs delivered by similar heavy bombers no longer restrained by Ukraine’s severely degraded air defenses.        

     Saturation Russian drone strikes continue in at least six regions. Operating mostly unopposed, aircraft, missiles and artillery batteries are deleting forward-deployed ammunition and fuel dumps, along with concentrations of NATO/Ukrainian troops and armor massing for a now postponed April 30 offensive that may end before it fully begins.    

     Not doing stupid stuff is another excellent reason to study war.     Residents rally in the center of the northeastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, May 29, 2021 -Serget Bobok/AFP


After years putting the weapons, training, trenches, politics and boomerang sanctions in place, this is not turning out to be the slam-dunk Washington and Brussels envisioned. Which might be why Russian artillerymen firing 20,000 to 60,000 rounds a day rate Ukraine’s top amateur general and his foreign dance directors, “insane”.    This assessment echoes their forebears at Balaclava, who simply assumed that the officers who ordered the charge of the Light Brigade were drunk.  


NATO is fighting over a corpse on life-support. Of some 35.5 million Ukrainians remaining in-country at the war’s start, more than 10 million have since fled into Europe and Russia. Because men have been forbidden to leave, these refugees are primarily women and their dependents. If previous US-sponsored diasporas are a reliable guide, most will never return.    

     Unsurprisingly, birth rates have plummeted across Ukraine. “Who wants to live or give birth to children in a country which has been mismanaged for 30 years, its infrastructure collapsing, its riches sucked out to New York, London and Tel Aviv by corrupt feudal oligarchs and the US government, a country which is now poorer than several African countries, a country which has no future?” asks the Saker.    

     “Schools are closed in most cities,” adds Larisa Shesler on-scene. “Settlements, even large ones, look like ghost towns. In Nikolaev, Odessa, Zaporozhye, less than half of the buildings’ apartments are occupied. Mostly it is the old people or very poor people who have no money and no chance to settle in another country who stay there.”    

     Shelser has discovered that a modern state cannot survive without reliable electricity. “The vast majority of the employed population receives about USD 381/month. However, the price of goods has risen by 40-80%, so people exist on the verge of survival,” she stresses. According to the governor of Nikolaev, 80% of its citizens have lost their jobs.    

     Energy-starved Germans can relate to Ukraine’s overnight deindustrialization. With its GDP cratering, the EU banning imports of its pesticide-saturated grain, and a once robust Soviet-era energy grid severely degraded by drone and missile strikes to hamstring a military largely dependent on electric trains, Ukraine's “factories are shutting down, mining is declining, and the harvest is falling,” Shesler adds. By the fourth quarter of 2022, Ukraine’s industrial production had already fallen by 50% and 90%, depending on the region.


Besides exposing America’s political and military leadership as pathological liers, among recently-leaked Top Secret “Pentagon Papers 2” is a Defense Intelligence Agency assessment that the US does not expect to allow any peace talks between Kyiv and Moscow until at least 2024.    

     “Negotiations to end the conflict are unlikely during 2023 in all considered scenarios,” the DIA concludes. This means that even if Ukraine manages to regain and retain a “significant” amount of territory, while inflicting “unsustainable losses on Russian forces” — this would not lead to peace talks, the DIA assures nervous neocons. Instead, the DIA forecasts that the situation will get bleaker, with even heavier Ukrainian casualties. If the national socialist fanatics holding Ukraine hostage opt to step up strikes on cities deep inside Mother Russia using American-supplied weapons, Moscow promises a devastating response that may not be confined to Ukraine.     

     Perhaps the best reason to study war — or at least pay attention to the biggest conflict in Europe since WWII — is to not become complicit in our own moral and economic ruin by turning away.    Instead, as huge anti-war, anti-NATO, anti-EU protests continue across Europe, those of us living under North America’s media blackout can begin breaking this demonic neocon spell by becoming alert to the violence we too often unthinkingly perpetuate in our own thoughts, words, relationships and “entertainment” choices.      

     The world wants peace. Why are we allowing a few woke psychos continue their godless agenda of chaos — instead of speaking out? The next time someone wants to sell you a war...       


Photo Captions:

Children constantly shelled by NATO-AFU in Donbass will carry lifelong trauma

Leaving Mairupol, April 2022 -Patrick Lancaster/PLNews Today

Ukrainian tanks caught in the open

NATO fighters in Kharkov Region -Paula Bronstein/Getty Images

Ukrainian soldiers after a battle near Bakhmut

Charge of the Light Brigade by Richard Caton Woodville Jr.

Zaporozhye NPP is a frequent target of Kiev's strikes -lyrics.com.ru

Anti-NATO demonstration during the July ’22 NATO summit in Madrid. -Diego Radames/SOPA/LightRocket/Getty  

About The Author
William Thomas is the author of Scorched Earth, Bringing The War Home, and Days of Deception: Ground Zero And Beyond. During and immediately following Desert Storm, he served on a three-man environmental emergency response team in Bahrain and Kuwait.