This is going to be a post on my views about the situation in Ukraine, since the news today is all about tanks being sent to Ukraine… tanks Ukraine’s military isn’t even trained to operate. I heard the Biden spokesman, Kirby, blabbering on this afternoon about how we’re going to have tank training teams and this was like echoes of the same claptrap we heard for 20 years about Afghan security forces, Iraqi security forces, and even training those imaginary “moderate” Syrian rebels” forces… It felt like he was reading the same old script.
First, I believe that pushing back against Russian and Chinese aggression is in America’s best interests, because allowing Russia and China to expand their influence, while we bury our heads in the sand by buying into hyped narratives about how we shouldn’t “poke the bear” or “mess with the dragon,” are really just appeasement. Appeasement sends the message of weakness and only invites more aggression.
That said, the approaches taken by European countries and the US thus far have not worked as expected and while Russia has aggressively worked to cut new energy deals around the world, Europeans and the US tried to have their cake and eat it too. They were still importing Russian oil and gas, while imposing more and more sanctions against Russia and telling us how evil Putin is. If he’s so evil, why weren’t they feverishly working to ramp up their own fossil fuel production, so they wouldn’t have to rely on Russian oil and gas?
On top of that insanity, at the same time the West was trying to have it both ways with buying Russian oil and gas, while imposing more and more sanctions against Russia and pouring more and more arms and money into Ukraine, the West decided to escalate their economic war against their own countries’ fossil fuel industries and citizens by running full steam ahead with their Great Reset effort.
None of this makes any strategic sense. Wars still require vast amounts of weapons, equipment… and fossil fuel. No military in the world runs on green energy. If you’re serious about supplying a war effort, you ramp up your own fossil fuel production; you don’t keep trying to import it from your adversary and decimate your own fossil fuel production capabilities.
The Biden team travelled around the world, hat in hand, begging despotic regimes for oil… They’d rather grovel to despots than do the sensible thing and unleash American fossil fuel production and ramp up green energy development. We should utilize every means of energy production that we can.
As far as what the actual end game strategy is in Ukraine, I don’t think any of the Western leaders have clearly articulated that and then had all of these other leaders agree on a strategy.
This isn’t about Republicans vs. Democrats, it’s about the reality of war, I think, and nothing I’ve seen thus far with how Western leaders have conducted this proxy war in Ukraine has made much sense.
I’d like to believe our leaders have learned something from the defeats of the GWOT strategy and regime change strategies we followed for 20 years, but it seems like no one has learned anything, except our adversaries…
The way I see it is either we really want Russia to be pushed back or we want to wage this crazy green energy war against fossil fuel and our own citizens, but trying to do both at the same time will be disastrous.
Update 1/28/2023: I was thinking about the endless string of failures in US strategy since 9/11 and the string of military misadventures, that were just memory-holed, as the strategic DC brain trust came up with one bad idea after another and faced no accountability for their previous failures. Here’s a short excerpt from a 2015 blog post I wrote:
” In 2014 Jamal Maaroof was touted: “Meet Jamal Maarouf, the West’s best fighting chance against Syria’s Islamist armies”. After receiving US training and weapons, to include TOW anti-tank missiles, Maaroof struck a peace deal with ISIS.”
The first link is the media hyping the latest strategic “big idea” in 2015 – arming “moderate” Syrian rebels to help in the fight against ISIS. So, the US Army embarked on supposedly vetting Syrian rebel groups and finding “moderates” (here’s a clue in a Sunni insurgency there aren’t any moderates) to train. This rebel leader, Maaroof and his rebel band were trained and armed by the US Army with TOW anti-tank missiles and as soon as they returned to the battlefield in Syria, they struck a peace deal with ISIS. Some groups that the US armed handed their US weapons over to ISIS or united with ISIS fighters. So much for vetting these groups. The same people – politicians, retired top brass and military experts, who hit the media and sold all these bad ideas, are still hard at selling this proxy war in Ukraine, which they’re not prepared to really fight. The Biden administration and European leaders, I think, are more committed to their Great Reset, which will cause endless suffering and mayhem on their own citizens, not defeat Russia in Ukraine.
Pushing back on Russian aggression is in American and European strategic interests, but doing it in such a half-assed way has already shown Russia (and America’s other adversaries) again, that we’re not really serious and time is on their side. It doesn’t matter if it’s an R or a D after the name of the President, because both sides are fully-invested in this corrupt military-industrial game and this mess is going to drag on and on, with the potential to escalate bubbling right below the surface.
Trying to work out some sort of ceasefire and deal between Ukraine and Russia would be the least bad option, I think, since the US and the Europeans can’t seem to agree on much of anything and have been dragging their feet on getting arms to Ukraine all along, despite the lip service that they’re sending more. Even this tank announcement was followed by :
“Despite President Biden’s promise to send 31 Abrams M1 tanks to Ukraine on Wednesday, it could take months for the artillery to arrive, according to reports.
The New York Post reported that Pentagon spokesperson Sabrina Singh confirmed that the U.S. does not have enough of M1 Abrams tanks in its stockpile to send over to Ukraine at this time.”https://www.foxnews.com/politics/bidens-promise-send-tanks-delayed-lack-inventory-reports
One response to “Ukraine and tanks”
I do find myself wondering … “which version” are the Ukrainians likely to receive?
Too, Abrams (so far as I’m aware) have never deployed to a theater in which total [US] air superiority has not already been achieved.
I’m not confident “our leaders” learned any lessons whatsoever.