Gonzalo Lira, in case you didn’t know, is an American who lives, by choice, in what is still, for now, the Ukrainian city of Kharkov. He is therefore close to the action of the conflict in that, also for now, country. He is an educated man and, if he chooses to express an opinion, what he has to say on that situation is therefore not to be taken lightly.
He has an opinion on the ‘Dirty Bomb’ story, so offhandedly dismissed by the western powers after the weekend warnings about it by the Russian Minister of Defence, Sergei Shoigu to western counterparts, and he has expressed that opinion in the video below. Now, I can’t agree with Lira’s story 100%, not that my opinion matters to other than myself, but the general thrust of it deserves some attention. Why else would the US 101st be in Romania rather than somewhere else? It is fairly obvious, though I admit I had not considered it before today, that if the US does get involved, it would be foolish for them to mingle with and fight alongside the Ukraine forces. So a separate action would be needed. Ukraine’s southwest seems ideal, and Odessa would also be a major prize to occupy. Once they are in there, it would be the devil’s own job to get them out, cleanly. But even so, for the 101st, wherever they may go, it is a suicide mission. Russia will not tolerate such overt US involvement, of any kind.
One more point on the 101st ‘airborne’. ‘Airborne’ units are not necessarily delivered to site by air, and it would be foolish in the extreme for them to be so inserted (which Lira seems to expect) in this case, due to Russia’s superior and very alert and efficient air defence systems. They would be totally destroyed, in the air, as they crossed the Ukraine border. No, it is a short drive over land which is held by friendly forces to Odessa, and it makes sense that is how they would be delivered. That does not mean, of course, they would actually arrive there.
OK, watch the video. I will have one more thing to say afterward.
Now, back to the dirty bomb. I had not previously considered Nikolaev as a likely target for such a bomb. It makes sense to detonate it at the place in which it is assembled – minimising risks of transportation. And that place of assembly is said to be in Zheltiye Vody (Yellow Waters) in the Dnepropetrovsk region – a considerable distance from either Nikolaev or Kherson. But I also had not been privy to the extra information which Gonzalo provides on the evacuation of Nikolaev. Has that been hidden generally or something I have missed? If true, then that does raise the stakes for a Nikolaev target. Perhaps the known (in the news) evacuation of Kherson – said to be due to the flooding risk occasioned by potential destruction of the Khakova Dam is something of a precautionary plan by the Russians in case of such a detonation. But if Nikolaev (or Kherson for that matter) is rendered uninhabitable by nuclear radiation as Gonzalo suggests, then that would make it very difficult for Russia to take Odessa and the southwest – whether or not US forces were there or had been annihilated.
This is all conjecture of course, until it happens. But we must (we, the world; we, the Russians; we, Europe) be prepared for ‘something’, some desperate measure, to take place before November 8 – US Mid-terms day – that is, within the next 10 days or so. And Gonzalo’s view may be somewhere near the mark.
It has to come to that eventually, in any case – bomb or no bomb. There is too much at stake for any back-down or compromise to occur, on any side. But I think Russia has all this under control. The desperation lies elsewhere.
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