Absence of Leadership and Vision is the main Reasons for Russian Catastrophic Managment of the War in Ukraine

The West has changed its main tune from destroying Russia economically, politically and military, to seeking diplomatic solution. For now the hybrid war is still raging and even escalating, but the next step to freeze the conflict on conditions favorable to the West is already in making.

After the successful Ukrainian strike on the most important Russian airbase, now there is a US decision to openly allow UA to engage targets on Russian territory with US-supplied weapons, according to The Times. And why wouldn’t they, if UA is doing what US could only dream of — degrading the Russian nuclear deterrence without any consequences or retaliation. The initial fear of Russian response is no more, thanks to the Russian leadership crisis. In fact, USAF is now suggesting the transfer of advance, long range strike drones to UA, according to Politico. Russia claims the US has provided support for the drones that attacked its strategic aviation bases, and its response is “legal consequences” (source).

The Russian eternal president Simpleton Simpletonovich Rasputin was “surprised” to hear the Merkel’s confession that the West only intended the Minsk-2 to give UA enough time to arm itself against Russia, and not as a genuine desire for peaceful solution. Now, he has “almost zero” trust in his “Western partners”. Note the “almost” part. Yet, he is “ready for agreements”. His Eurofetish was shaken but survived even up until now. And that explains the total lack of any strategic initiative from Russian Government, and, consequently, the Armed Forces.

Igor Strelkov, the original military leader of the Donbass resistance to Western-made coup in then democratic UA, tried and failed to enlist in to take an active part in the fighting. Simply put, Russian MoD doesn’t want him. Russian MoD only need mindless and obedient drones, the ones like those mobilized soldiers who had frozen to death. Anyhow, I believe Strelkov has much more value as a blogger and “alternative media” source than as a middle rank officer in Ukrainian trenches. He has informed us about his experience and conclusions after his closer encounter with the Russian military fighting in UA. According to him, there is no one in the Russian Military understands what they are doing in UA, and to what end. The Russian government refuses to define the goals of the war, in order to keep its option open (which is, ultimately, would be reaching an agreement with the West). As a result, they totally lack any initiative, only trying to stabilize the situation. Hence the totally stupefying grand scale building of defence lines inside Russian held territories. To be clear, those are not temporary defence line, intended to break the enemy offence and follow it with counterattack and its own offensive operations, but to create a long-term fortified borderline. And this is the only goal the Russian Army have for now — to prevent any more disastrous retreats similar to Kharkov and Kherson. And nothing more than that. No strategic initiative, no firm understanding by the commanders what to do, other than to hold their current positions.

The ongoing, months-long strikes on UA infrastructure had extremely little effect, relative to the amount of cruise missiles that are being deployed. Only the secondary targets are engaged, resulting in most of UA still having the power most of the time. The strategically important bridges, the command centers, the government facilities are still being avoided. The only reason for this half-handed approach is to leave as much maneuver space for Rasputin’s government as possible. While the West is escalating, the Russia is unilaterally trying to do anything to escalate from its part. Not because it is unable, but because its leadership doesn’t lead. In those conditions, there people who are actually fighting the war weren’t given any direction by their leaders, are mostly confused and frustrated. They have no real fighting spirit, only the desire to survive this meaningless “special military operation” for as long as possible. At least that is the main point of Strelkov’s account.

I came to understand that Rasputin is a schemer, not a visionary. He seeks secret arrangements, made away of the public eye, as he had done many times before. And as it always happened before, this would be done to Western benefit and Russian detriment. And after those would be broken by the West at their convenience, Rasputin would cry again about broken promises, and his “disappointment” in his “Western partners”. He would give the “Empire of lies” speeches to the audience in Central Asia, and his top diplomat, Lavrov, will repeat it in his African tour. As long as the boys club that holds power in Kremlin is enjoying its life to the fullest, they don’t give a second thought to the state of their country or people.

The problem is, not all of the Russian public is ready to accept this. After the Kharkov retreat debacle, then the public pressure was building quickly, Rasputin and Co came with the annexation scheme to let the steam out before the whole situation will blow in their faces. It wasn’t meant as a response for Western escalation of their proxy war in UA, but mostly an empty gesture. Now, those territories, recognized by the Russian Federation as Russian territory, are under enemy control. And what is the Russian response for it? To build defence lines, as if they are planning to freeze the status quo, instead of getting it all back. It is the first time, excluding some border incidents, since the WWII, the Russian soil (according to the Russian Law) is under enemy control. Russian citizens are being shelled and killed daily, including in the pre-SMO borders. And still the official status of this war is “Special military operation”. Russian legislatives wanted the official declaration of war, or anything that would legally prevent Rasputin’s government from reaching secret agreements, swallowing all the human losses and humiliations in order to sign a “Minsk-3”. They didn’t get what they wanted, but at least the republics of Lugansk, Donetsk, Zaporozh’e and Kherson are now recognized and ratified by the Russian legislature as Russian Federation, which means it couldn’t be abandoned by the presidential decree alone withing the frame of diplomatic agreement with the West. For this, Rasputin would need to force the majority of the Russian Duma to ratify it, which is theoretically possible, but would mean the total collapse of the public support not only for the government, but also for their buddies in the legislative arm. Thus, it will give rise to a new government, and not just a cosmetic change of some figures for others withing the same boys club.

That also means that any agreement Rasputin is able to achieve with the West would require him to keep the new territories. At the very least, he must hold on to the ones which are already under the Russian control. Any Russian retreat due to diplomatic agreements is almost impossible. Which could explain the defense lines what serve only one purpose — to defend, but not to attack.

On the other hand, the West needs Russian energy and raw materials. Western economies are in sharp decline. Especially the ones of European Union countries. In order to survive politically, they have no option but to normalize the situation somehow. While US can even benefit from the weakened Europe, the Europe itself would reach a point then its current political elites would be overthrown, which is, of course, unacceptable for them. So, they need a normalization in diplomatic and economic relationships with Russia. Yet, being ideologically oriented, it is only possible if they could believably present it as their victory and Russian defeat. They hopping to do so by weakening Russia as much as possible, even while they practically reached their limits of doing so. The direct military intervention by the EU or NATO in UA is politically impossible, unless they can be sure the war will stay limited to UA and RU territory. And especially the war with Russia cannot reach any of the core EU countries.

The situation is at stalemate. Russia has the military potential to win the war, but it lacks political leadership with vision and resolve to do so. Putin would much rather reach yet another one of his treasonous agreements what would benefit the West and weaken Russia but is cornered by the public opinion. (Many in Russia still stupidly believe cunning Rasputin has a plan, according to which the things are going, and it would bear fruits sometime in the future.) It’s not because he wants to do it, but because he prefers to lose something than to risk his position, and the positions of his buddies. The European elites aren’t able to defeat Russia militarily or economically, while the ongoing war is destroying their popular support, threatening their hold on power. Poisoned by their neo-liberal, global values and their Russophobia, they are unable to propose a deal that would satisfy Russian public. They were allowed to go so far against Russian interests by the Rasputin’s government, that now the chams of what would be acceptable for Russians and what is possible to offer by Europeans is far too great. And the American elites are happy to weaken Russia and Europe, to strengthen their dreams of the world hegemony. The rest of the world is staying back, trying to profit from this situation as much as possible.

That being said, this stalemate can continue forever. The popular dismay of their governments will only grow. In Russia due to the military failures (resulting from government corruption and incompetency), and in the West due to the economic free fall. While the elites themselves are shielded from this affecting them directly, they can only do so much to try and control and suppress the popular discontent. There is a point when it will achieve the critical mass, eventually.

Trying to see the big picture, I’m hopeful this unending tragedy of a war would lead to cleansing of the stale, out of the touch, corrupt and incompetent elites in power, and would rejuvenate the European civilization for a few next generations. The false values that are currently destroying it should be revised, and the Populus should educate itself in the matters of geopolitics and economics, in order to prevent governments to lead it astray into the darkness of the war, poverty, misery and injustice.


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