Let’s Mention Some Positives, For a Change

I mainly concentrate on the negatives of the Russian conduct in the Ukrainian war. Some will see it as an anti-Russian position. In fact, it is the total opposite. Turning blind eye to the problems and failures is, in my opinion, the path to degradation. To improve, first the deficiencies should be recognized and accepted as such. Only after that it becomes possible to fix them in order to improve.

Some of the positives of the so-called SMO are cleansing of the incompetent high commanders: district command generals, Black Sea Fleet admiral, generals and officials responsible for cooperation with the Russian military industry, different services intended to support the Russian Army — many had been sacked or quietly moved away from their positions. This is the main step to fix the problems, given these are the real culprits being identified and removed, and not just scape goats to protect the higher ups.

I also wrote about not seeing Nona self-propelled universal artillery systems taking part in the operations. And just now I happen to see some articles in Russian media talking about those weapon systems, operated by the Russian paratroopers to provide artillery support and destroy enemy troops and hardware:




And from what I could see, they are even used quite efficiently. They move into positions, get their targeting info from UAVs, fire and leave to escape the possible counter battery fire. Each evening the results are being analyzed by the commanding officers using the drone footage, in order to improve their tactics, coordination etc.

While all this sounds nice, these are still the paratroopers — the most combat ready and best equipped and motivated of the regular Russian ground forces. And their Nonas are being used just as self-propelled 120mm mortars with unguided munition — not much more. At least that is what I gathered from those short news articles and video clips.

Another positive development is that Russian generals were forces to remember and relearn the lessons of past wars — most of soldier’s work in a big war is in digging trenches and building fortifications. In the beginning Russians did nothing of this. They expected to blitzkrieg all the way, using the highways. Now they build fortifications everywhere, even on their own territory (not the newly annexed republics). If only they would do it from the start, maybe the Kharkov region wouldn’t be abandoned so shamefully to few Ukrainian brigades. Well, Russians are slow learners, that’s why they need such a big country with large and determined population to win a war. First, they need to retreat and experience heavy, unnecessary casualties, and only then they start learning, it seems. It’s a shame these lessons will be forgotten yet again after a few decades of peace.

Another seemingly positive development is the (limited) recognition of mobilization system failures, and the acknowledgement it needs to be reformed and rebuilt. This is a chance to create a much more efficient, centralized system. Instead of local recruitment offices what mobilize middle aged office workers with health problems and zero army experience, or highly needed specialists.

So, there are some positive developments after all. And the end result would be a Russian military victory in Ukraine, unless politicians will intervene to turn it into a political defeat.

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