33 thoughts on “Russia’s Missiles”

  1. If Russia is moving light or non armored reservist forces to the front it would appear they intend to go on the offensive from secured territory they’ve already captured. Perhaps using pincer encirclement tactics branching out from the secured regions. Thus preserving their supply lines and keeping a path of withdrawal open in case of heavy resistance. Should that be the case, Ukraine forces would need to launch bi-directional attacks along the base of the pincer before encirclement to cut-off and surround and capture the advance guard and force march them out of the combat zone or shoot them in place in they refuse to co-operate. Also mobile missiles like HIMARS to fire behind the lines to strike key supply lines and centers to prevent re-enforcement. Maybe the Russians are counting on land speed? But roads and fields can be dug up and mined to make that very difficult with non armored vehicles. The charge of the light brigade against machine guns? We’ll see. I’m still pro negotiated settlement but the longer this drags out the harder that becomes. I’m also convinced of two things. 1) The West must make a stand in Ukraine else Russia will go after the other former Soviet bloc states now in NATO which will trigger Article V and escalate WWIII to nuclear which will happen with no warning. 2) Ukrainian weapons must start taking out targets inside Russia. These have to weapons procured from former Soviet countries donating Soviet era weapons that are replaced with modern advanced western systems. The Russians have to pay a too high a price for continuing this war. If it is allowed to fester to the point of collapse of Ukraine, nuclear conflict is inevitable. Pay it now not forward. There is also too much dependence on ground forces. Is this the habitual training of old Soviet tactics on both sides? Why are there not more air tactics employed? This conflict smells so much like Vietnam I want to puke.

    1. It’s way past time For Ukraine to take and hold some Russian territory. Force supply redeployment. Let’s not make Russian logistics so easy….

      1. It won’t have to be much maybe just a city or two. It’d throw the whole Russian strategy into disarray. Because it has so many strategic advantages I won’t be surprised if it happens. A move against Belarus might even garner some local support.

        1. They probably tried. Russia has been shelling many targets in the Kursk-Belgorod border area for months. Those targets were probably Ukraine staging areas.

          The best strategy against Russia is not to start a war against Russia.

          1. Or explain how the Jew-led Nazi regime started a war with Russia by delegating the starting to the Russians?

      1. Cite? You just want to surrender to Russia now? Why fuck around with Article 5? When we can all sing praises to Stalin in our dog eating communist utopia? Our educational system is 83% there already.

        1. Mr Spain
          1. Sadly we jews are not perfect. Soros got his start helping send his fellow jews to Nazi death camps. Zelenski and his oligarch patrons are getting rich from the NGO’s and corruption. Just ask Hunter and Joe.
          2. Surrender to Russians now? I’m not at war with the Russians and frankly don’t give 2 Shiites for the Ukraine borders. I’m concerned about our southern border.
          3. I think Stalin is dead. Russia doen’t seem to be sending OUR boys around the world trying kill the local goat herders and pay the MIC billions of dollars.

          1. I don’t recall too many Jews in the NAZI hierarchy. I’ll have to read what Heydrich had to say about it. If Russia takes Ukraine they will move on the Baltic States next and you will be at war with Russia whether you like it or not. Or you can emigrate to New Zealand. Funny thing about NZ. They don’t have open borders either.

          2. “If Russia takes Ukraine they will move on the Baltic States next and you will be at war with Russia whether you like it or not.”

            If that was the case, then we are wasting turns with a proxy war.

            I wonder what is going on in Alaska.

          3. If that was the case, then we are wasting turns with a proxy war.

            Sounds like good strategy actually unless you’re in a hurry to get into a bigger war.

          4. Only if you are buying time to move your forces into position from across the globe. Putting our future in the hands of Ukraine is foolish.

          5. How bout wasting turns till the old KGB thug dies and his dreams of the return to glory of the USSR goes with him?

    2. I don’t think #1 would happen because it is clear that NATO would easily dispatch Russian forces. We would have almost instant air and sea superiority and Russian troops would be left without support. But that is also risky because Russia would view the conflict as existential. It isn’t enough to defeat their military. We would have to take out their nukes and ASATs.

      I want to see #2 because I think that is how Ukraine prevents being invaded again in the future. You have to bloody the bully’s nose. That comes with its own risks in escalation. The Shaman Battalion has been doing raids and maybe that is all they need but after the tactical targets, they need to select some as punishment.

      The John Bachelor show had a lady on talking about how Russia has changed their tactics. They keep their forces gathered without splitting up along many different fronts. They better utilize tanks and artillery to protect troops and the rear. It is slow but they push forward, obviously without regard for anything in front of them.

      Our weapons are finally getting there, so maybe that will help. Have you heard anything about the training of a new Ukrainian army? Last I saw, they were rushing people to the front and rotating them out in a day or two because the fighting was so bad and losses were high. But I’m hoping we are putting in a lot of effort training up a significant number of troops.

      1. My worry is that Ukraine is poorly equipped to fight a war of attrition because it can’t afford the casualties. Russia can. A breakout would throw the Russians off balance. Require logistical redistribution which would weaken the ability of the Russians to slog westward. The West can fein surprise and a sense of betrayal but continue to show feck by continuing the resupply. Holding Russian territory accomplishes two things. Throws Russian tactics off balance and forces a change in logistics, already a demonstrated Russian weakness. The second thing it accomplishes is it gives Ukraine a bargaining chip in future negotiations. There is the third possibility of reducing pressure on Ukraine on its Eastern front. Stop trying to defeat Russia on their terms. It won’t work.

        1. The problem is that significant attacks on Russian territory give Putin pretext to expand the war. This war isn’t presently on Putin’s terms either. For example, how many Russian troops are fighting in the Ukraine presently? Sounds like it’s somewhere over 200k with new troops dribbling in slowly and present troops dwindling due to casualties. Politically, Putin can’t massively increase troops even though that’s what he needs to win this war in the near future.

          1. Can Russia expand the war? What other countries can they go to war with and what weapon systems would they use? They don’t have many options for striking other countries and the risk that they do so is something we currently face.

            Calling up conscripts would increase their numerical advantage but how would they perform? If this is being viewed as a way to bleed Russia and remove Putin from power, then maybe getting him to use those powers would benefit your strategy.

            It will be interesting to see how this new phase of the war plays out as both sides make changes. It has been brutal losses on both sides so far. Can Russia overcome their tactical handicaps that have prevented them from effectively using their weaponry? Can plucky Ukraine continue to innovate their way from tactical success to strategic success?

            I’m mostly concerned with any blowback we might face considering the precarious position our country is in right now and how easy it would be for Russia to hurt us if they wanted. Demonstrating an ASAT capability prior to invasion wasn’t some random alignment of scheduling.

          2. Can Russia expand the war?

            Sure. They could double the number of troops that they presently deployed, for example. Perhaps that might not make a difference on the current fronts where Russians are advancing, but new fronts could be opened. And they have more experienced troops (with somewhat better gear) than what they’re using now.

            I’m mostly concerned with any blowback we might face considering the precarious position our country is in right now and how easy it would be for Russia to hurt us if they wanted. Demonstrating an ASAT capability prior to invasion wasn’t some random alignment of scheduling.

            Is that blowback worse than the blowback of not opposing Russia in any form? I’m just not seeing it.

        2. Ukraine has been hitting depots and other military targets in Ukraine. News of these attacks are then followed with Russia is running out of ammo stories, which may be true and/or their logistics catch up.

  2. This wouldn’t be the first time they found a creative use for off label purposes, so who can say for sure? It could be the value of the target dictates what system is used. That could point towards a shortage but not necessarily that they have used up their supply. Meaning, that might not have had a lot to begin with and use them only when needed.

    There is a difference between not having enough of something to do what you want and running out but it could play out the same either way.

  3. One other (though not mutually exclusive) explanation as to why the Russians are using old missiles in “off label” ways is because they are old. It makes economic sense to use up stuff that’s near or past the end of its service life.

    Accuracy is not a problem when you have plenty of stock, plus don’t mind collateral damage (Indeed, Russia likes collateral damage). Also, using old stock means the Ukrainians are expending modern (costly, and in limited supply) defense missiles to try to shoot them down.

    My personal guess is that both explanations are true; the Russians are running low on modern precision weapons, plus have a lot of old surplus stock they don’t mind using.

    The Russians are smarter than the West when it comes to old stock; they tend to store it. We tend to destroy it. An example is the unguided cluster warhead rockets for our MLRS (including HIMARS), the M26 (the “Steel Rain” of Desert Storm). We spent over 100 million to destroy these rockets, rockets (we had over half a million of them) which I’m sure the Ukrainians would love to have, plus we might well need if we run short of more modern versions in a major conflict.

    1. “My personal guess is that both explanations are true; the Russians are running low on modern precision weapons, plus have a lot of old surplus stock they don’t mind using.”

      This sounds right with maybe some fear of sending in their newer equipment because they don’t perform as well as advertised. On paper, they have some nice capabilities but in practice there are big holes, both tactically and in missing technological capability, in their system that prevent the effective use of those capabilities.

  4. A very interesting video for those looking to expand their understanding.
    Ray McGovern – Ukraine: A Taste of The Truth

    Search for it on Youtube. Seems we can’t post links on this blog in comments. Hat tip to Larry Johnson on his blog sonar21

    1. https://youtu.be/sY9KAp97z58

      I have another interpretation of the Biden Administration reaction post 12/30. They didn’t know how the fuck to respond. Putin took note and saw the opening he needed. The idea there was a plan afoot to put NATO missiles in Ukraine is worse that stupid Russian paranoia. It was useful pretext. Your analyst misses the real issue. Ukraine wasn’t planning on joining NATO but the EU. This would have imposed all sorts of problems with Russian Ukrainian trade (or should I say hegemony?). This was the core issue. The rest is nonsensical fluff. If the Brandon Administration was playing with a full deck the invasion wouldn’t have happened. And Russia would have concocted another reasonable fabrication out of whole cloth for why it was justified NOT to invade.

      FYI the Poles and Romanians WANTED those ABM sites but we’ll just pretend they didn’t care. With what Russia has done if Poland weren’t a NATO member they’d be developing their own nukes right now.

      1. David, I agree fully with what you said. I just want to expand on it a bit, as I think their foul-up began long before 12/30/21.

        Russia’s big military buildup around Ukraine back in March and April of 21 was the start. Russia deployed forces with about 40,000 troops then, rattled their sabres, threatened to invade (though with far too small a force to do so), and then announced they were withdrawing their troops – and did so. JUST the troops went back to other parts of Russia or bases in the region. What was glaringly not seen was trains of vehicles and supplies doing likewise (plenty of footage was seen of them in the way in, though none on the way out – because the latter didn’t exist), and our imbecilic media and politicians saw this as a Russian withdrawal.

        It wasn’t. As I said at the time, often in great frustration (because it was so glaringly obvious) that Russian operation wasn’t meant to attack Ukraine, it was to deploy logistics (especially in the so-called breakaway republics that Russia took in 2014) for a later invasion, plus of course as a scenario training operation.

        Those in-place logistics and supplies (such as massive ammo dumps) made it easy for Russia, which has abysmal logistic capabilities, to rapidly constitute an invasion force, thus catching everyone flat-footed in December 2021. Except, I can’t buy that explanation – it’s beyond belief that our intel agencies didn’t see Russia’s first buildup for what it was. I think it was clearly seen, but like most unpleasant truths, studiously ignored by this administration

        As for the buildup for the Feb 24th invasion, the fist steps were taken days after the US retreat from Afghanistan. IMHO, the timing (same time China shifted to bellicose rhetoric regarding Taiwan) is not coincidental.

        BTW, the Russian logistics bases and ammo dumps were largely set up around Belograd, Russia, and in the Luhansk and Dontesk “breakaway republics” in the Donbas, defacto Russian-occupied since 2014. Those are why, when the Kiev offensive imploded (Largely due to logistics failures) Russia refocused on the Donbas, where their logistics would be greatly aided by their pre-positioned ammo and supplies, plus their ability to use rail lines (Russian logistics are rail-based to an incredible degree).

        BTW, those same ammo dumps and supply hubs are what Ukraine has been obliterating with HIMARS for the last two weeks. If, as seems likely, Russia was having missile and artillery ammo shortages before this, IMHO the destruction of over 20 big Russian ammo dumps (so far) is probably not going to help Russia. 🙂

    2. Shallow, will you give us a reason why we should watch an hour long video? I don’t buy that such a thing is a “taste of truth” just because the phrase appears in the title. I really dislike argument by video. You can’t quote it or skim it. And it sucks time to watch. So if someone is going to tell me that there’s this awesome video to watch, they better give a good reason, not merely that they think it’s “very interesting”. Sure, if you gave an accurate description of what’s in the video, we may well decide it’s garbage and not watch it – but I consider that a feature not a bug.

      My take is that if you can’t argue your point with your own words – let’s face it, you continue to have serious trouble with that – then someone else’s words aren’t likely to be any improvement.

      1. “A very interesting video for those looking to expand their understanding” is something to be filed next to “We need to have a conversation.”

      2. Here is an interesting video with Erik Prince. He is credentialed out the wazzu and has real world experience fighting wars as both a Navy SEAL and as a contractor working for the CIA, State Department, DOD, and even did some work with FEMA.

        His life history explains a lot about the way he views the world and he talks about all the things we do here, economics, Russia, China, Ukraine, Afghanistan, even somalia. He engages in the same types of thought exercises except he has global experience implementing them.

        IMO, it is important to get the views of people who have been fighting our wars for the last 20+ years, especially our elite soldiers.


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