Russia, In Spite of or Because of Recent Events, Still in the Driver Seat in Ukraine

The unabashed glee of the west over what has proven – now the smoke has cleared – to have been nothing more than a storm in a teacup during the second week of September, is (in the minds of those in the west who still have some sort of grip on reality) turning to thoughts of “Oh no, what did we do?” They have begun to count the tally of Ukraine lives lost (closer to 10-1 than the claimed 5-1, I suggest) and the number of Ukrainian – mostly foreign donated – machines of war, destroyed. The result must be giving them the horrors, and good reason to doubt they will ever be able to pull off such a dramatic, foolhardy and costly stunt again. Especially now that many of their finest troops, and the only remaining reserves they can call on, are of the female variety (if we exclude the hordes of foreign mercenaries – volunteers with a death-wish). What better way to kiss your nationhood goodbye – even though there are other and more pressing causes waiting in the queue to bring that about.

Adding to the horror of that realisation would be the subsequent activities of the now more safely positioned, behind secure defences, Russian forces of the Special Operation – still more or less intact after the experience. They simply walked away to more adequate emplacements while their air units and artillery had a field day on the Ukrainians drawn out of their cosy trenches to open territory. A great many thousands of them won’t be going home – at least without bits missing from their anatomy or their minds – and a great many of them, I expect, still lie where they fell.

So, what have the Russians and allies been doing in the last few days?

Well, that’s a whole new story in itself, but rest assured everything has now changed. First, while the frontline troops made themselves comfortable and better prepared for a defensive role along most of the contact line – although they are still conducting, and very successfully, clearing operations in the areas to the north of Donetsk, they blacked out the whole of north and central Ukraine with hits on the power generation and distribution systems of the Ukraine electricity grid. This appears to just have been a warning of Russia’s renewed intent to finish the job. A warning that can be repeated and expanded at will and at any time. They have also, yesterday or today, utterly annihilated whole contingents of Ukraine troops, some small, some larger, that have attempted fresh engagements in the Kherson region.

I will add one more piece of news and leave it at that for now. The overall picture is clear. Russia is still in the driver seat in this operation. Ukraine and its sleazy backers, have, and perhaps never did have, any hope of victory.

Today also, perhaps yesterday (time compression and zoning aside) Russia bombed the dam forming the Karachun reservoir (north of Kryvyi Rih) and flooding the Ingulets river to more than twice its normal depth – inundating some urban areas. This action, a first of such for Russia in this conflict, was presumably done to trap several thousand Ukraine troops between the river and Russian front lines (no escape possible). This is a turkey shoot in the making – if the Ukraine soldiers do not surrender. More on that story later, I hope.

I expect further events in the coming hours and will try (hate making promises, but these events must be aired by someone) to provide up to date news tomorrow, with supporting reports.

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