03 March 2022

Videos of the day -- a botched invasion and what follows

General Barry McCaffrey assesses the invasion.  That huge Russian convoy just outside Kyiv is still not moving and appears to be stuck, due to supply problems, Ukrainian resistance, and the fact that heavy vehicles can't leave the road because the ground is too soggy and soft to support them.  McCaffrey appears stunned that the attack as a whole was so poorly planned and executed.

Former general David Petraeus explains why Russia can't win the war -- but can inflict massive destruction in the course of losing.

Mikhail Khodorkovsky is a former oligarch turned opponent of Putin, now living in London.  There has been a lot of speculation about Putin's mental state and the fate of his regime in the wake of the bungled invasion, but Khodorkovsky has more insider knowledge of those things than most commentators.

A short Ukrainian report in English.  The language used here is more emotive than would be typical in the West, but this video shows well the tremendous damage already inflicted in Ukrainian cities by Russian missile attacks.

Finally, on a lighter note:  the Ukrainians have been using Turkish-made Bayraktar drones to attack Russian armored formations from the air.  The Ukrainian military made this music video in praise of the weapon.


Blogger Mike said...

A lot of mention about Putin's long tables in the news recently with people laughing at them. I think Putin doesn't want anyone close to him because he's afraid someone will kill him.

A gal on Colbert last night that has written a book about Putin said she sat next to him at a dinner a few years back. She said he didn't eat any of the food or drink any of the tea or water.

03 March, 2022 01:41  
Blogger jenny_o said...

Interesting, especially the interview on France TV.

Have you seen this?

It's a Stephen Colbert interview with Fiona Hill and she gives her assessment of Putin's possible future choices. She's not as optimistic as the military guys in the first two videos.

03 March, 2022 01:57  
Blogger Sixpence Notthewiser said...

Oh, that little prick Vlad will inflict as much damage in Ukraine as he can. He may not win this war, but he's going to try and destroy as much as he can. I hope more oligarchs (and the Russian people!) turn against him. And they JUST noticed that he's off his rocker?


03 March, 2022 02:42  
Anonymous anynameleft said...

A secondary long term economic/ international influence in the world is that after such a poor performance their international arms sales will bottom out along with the influence those sales bring them.
When a Turkish developed/ built weapon having such success against russian targets and air defense broadcast around the world it is hard to see people lining up to buy equipment that, for whatever reason, is attached to the russian military's failure in Ukraine.

03 March, 2022 15:50  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looks like going to Ukraine fight the Russians is the echo of going to Spain to fight the Fascists.

Since Putin could not win in the immediate invasion, his plan has changed to make as much distruction as possible.

04 March, 2022 13:53  
Blogger Kaleberg said...

Good to hear they are using those Turkish drones. They let the Turkey backed Azerbaijan clobber Russia backed Armenia in their most recent conflict. I'm sure this is well known in military circles, but I can see why the Ukrainians would like this kept relatively quiet lest Russia start pressuring Turkey.

04 March, 2022 19:37  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Mike: The lust for power must be dementedly strong, to get a man to tolerate such a limited and paranoid life for the sake of it.

Jenny_o: Thanks for the link. Over time I've come to see most dictators as weak, strutting bullies, usually suffering from varying degrees of delusion -- not as supermen. And the fact that he's afraid to eat or drink even on his own turf suggests to me that the possibility of someone in his own inner circle deciding to take him out if he makes a serious mistake is quite real.

Sixpence: I think they knew he's somewhat off his rocker -- what makes the difference is when it becomes dangerous to them.

Any: That will certainly be a further problem. Authoritarian states' technology and engineering tends to be crap (along with things like building standards). Sales of Bayraktar drones, on the other hand, should go through the roof.

Anon: Good comparison. It's the most substantive thing anyone who wants to fight for freedom can do right now -- which makes it interesting that our US anti-vax anti-everything wingnuts are conspicuously not doing it. A lot of them are even rooting for Putin.

Kaleberg: That could well be a concern. But Turkey has a history of not giving way easily to pressure. They've now even closed thew Bosporus to Russian warships.

05 March, 2022 03:16  
Blogger yellowdoggranny said...

think putin might have misread the situation?

05 March, 2022 07:16  
Blogger Infidel753 said...


05 March, 2022 07:36  
Blogger Tommykey said...

As Putin is set to turn 70 this year, I think he is starting to feel his mortality and that he is running out of time to fulfill his fantasy of restoring the Soviet Union.

In past years, he had limited, manageable goals, taking bits of Georgia here, the Crimea from Ukraine there, etc. But now he has cast aside his patience and discipline and appears to have bitten off more than he can chew.

06 March, 2022 18:40  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

Tommykey: Unfortunately that's all too plausible. Most people become more cautious as they get older, but most people don't have a dictator's delusions of omnipotence.

09 March, 2022 01:39  

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