by Egbert Nohbakkon, 24 January 2023
When discussing the progress of the Ukraine war, there are two heresies that if expressed by a person trying to present a realistic and balanced report on the current situation are guaranteed to attract a lage hate - mob of Belendskyyyy fan - club cultists. The first of these is to suggest that Putin may yet prevail in smashing the liberal order in the US / EU / NATO alliance that nas been propping up Bellendskyyyy and the corrupt, neo - Nazi regime in Kiev. The second is that the Russians may have actually triumphed in this already. Western leaders are never going to admit that Russia has outplayed them on all fronts, slowly gringing away in the shooting war while radpidly undermining US hegemony and dollar dominance in the economic conflict.
The alternative reality inhabited by the Bellendskyyyyy fan club is honourably black and white. Moved by the braveey and stoicism of the Ukrainians, we demand the wetern alliance pumps more and more high tech wesponary and specialist 'support' personnel into the theatre of war until a just victory is delivered for Ukraine's regime.
But the fact is that despite daily reports fot the past six months at least that Ukrainian troops had routed the invading Russians ans were rapidly advancing on Murmansk and Vladivostock, (you might need to look at a map to get that one,) Ukraine is not on course for outright victory. Quite the contrary, as it stands it cannot eliminate Russian forces and, in fact, is increasingly on the back foot. Zelensky’s reconquest of the country is faltering. The much hyped recapture of Kherson by Ukrainian forces was in fct simply a case of the Ukrainian army walking into a city from which Russia had withdrawn its troops in order to consolidate behind more easily defensible lines ahead of winter. Similarly the reported advances by Ukraine in the Donbas region were simply a reoccupation of flat, sparsely populated farmland as, having crossed those plains to concentrate its forces around the strategic targets of Bakhmut and Soledar.
With the NATO members hesitating on supplying modern, heavy battle tanks tanks, the Ukrainian military command does not have sufficient weapons to launch preemptive strikes before Putin escalates in spring. And if the truth was acknowledged by mainstream media, nor do they habe the troop numbers.
For all the weakness of Putin’s military, we are heading for, at best, a catastrophic stalemate, and at worst, a decisive Russian breakthrough. Although Ukraine has the numbers and resolve to uphold its sovereignty, its Russian counterparts have superior stockpiles of weapons and ammunition. Moreover, the Kremlin is reportedly set to mobilise half a million new conscripts as it seeks to escalate the war from drones and artillery to planes and tanks – a massive shift.
This makes the West’s current strategy increasingly untenable. Until now, it has lent Ukraine just enough help to drag out the war in an effort to grind down the Russian military, while stopping short of the kind of intervention that might decisively shift the outcome. But as Russia changes the conflict’s dynamics, Ukraine, deprived of the necessary capabilities, could quickly go from having the upper hand to a cataclysmic rout.
The west has become soft, weak and morally degenerate . Russia China and other malicious groups can see this and are using our values of trust , openness and democracy to undermine our society . People's lives in the west have become too easy. The priorities are wrong - work for many is optional , taxes for those who do are too high and governments prefer socialism and virtue signalling - on matters such as climate change, net zero, equality , human "rights" , saving the planet , "free" trade [including with enemies] , the "peace" dividend , international charity , "free" welfare for all and excusing crime - to ensuring social stability ,economic health & national security. In the end socialists always run out of other peoples money .....We know that if pursued relentlessly socialism doesn't produce the intended utopia but still we persist .
Government polices are also undermining the family and tradition - values which have worked for centuries . Free speech , individual and personal responsibly, self help , incentives to work and to save - all are under threat. Meanwhile governments favour the regulation and monitoring of every aspect of our lives , money printing and borrowing [ apparently suspending the laws of economics & the business cycle] , the preservation of the "environment" , a spend now- pay later culture , an obsession with net zero , immigration , identity politics and equality. It s not that such things don't have some merit but the balance has become completely distorted . Voters who can see this, are it seems longer in the majority and even if they were have little influence. The west looks to be in a slow death spiral . It all feels very fin de siecle and like the last days of Rome.
The West is walking towards disaster. In 1992
we thought Russia was a basket-case ready to be absorbed and that China
was in our pocket as we moved toward a one world government on the basis
of UN Agenda 21 and social liberalism. Slowly it became apparent that
neither were on-board with the agenda. Unable to drop the long held plan
we chose conflict rather than cooperation. Fortunately for their
sanity, most people in the West think Ukraine is another local squabble
before normal service is resumed. It is a tragedy almost beyond belief.
Liberal democracies increasingly resigned to their own decline and weary of the traditional values that have held nation states together values – not least the values of individual freedom and personal sovereignty. This decline was highlighted in Putin's comment to the FT that “the liberal idea” had “outlived its purpose. It also chimes with global ambivalence to the Ukraine war. South Africa has just given Lavrov a warm reception, while other countries have abstained in the UN and/or continue trading with Russia. Even in Germany half the population backs Scholz's unwillingness to supply tanks.
Why is this happening now? Surely it is because Western values have changed. When the Berlin wall fell, we still stood for freedom - to vote, publish, study, work, travel and trade. Many countries liked that and moved towards democracy. We seem now to be losing faith in those freedoms, preferring to criticise and apologise for our own history and previous social values and to tolerate government overreach in response to (mainly manufactured,) crises. Even free speech is under assault from the new morality of wokeism, and government agencies very similar to The Thought Police of Orwell's dydtopian novel '1984' establishing systems of total surveillance and policing all our social interactions for instances of 'hate speech' or questioning of the regimes narratives, and ever watchful for unconscious isms and phobias.
No wonder the world doesn't feel inspired by what liberalism has degenerated into. At least Russia believes in its own values. China, India, the Islamic world and Christian Africa can relate to that, notably Russia's rejection of the west's disproportionate emphasis on LBGT lifestyles and sex equality at the expense of family life, and the cultural ties that bind societies.