UKRAINE UPDATE: HOW THINGS STAND THREE WEEKS IN
The campaign to make Ukraine a reasonably normal nation again appears to be largely going to plan.
The Russian military is taking its time, only advancing where it is crucial to do so while negotiations on Russia’s demands take place through ongoing virtual meetings.
Mariupol, an important city on the Azov Sea will fall to Russian forces within the next few days. It has been a stronghold of the ultranationalist forces since it was taken from rebel troops early in the conflict that began with Kiev sending its military forces east in 2014.
The extremist militias holed up in Mariupol are apparently running out of both essential supplies and ammunition. It is not expected that they can last long now having been driven into the centre of the city from the surrounding suburbs.
The main area of combat is in the Donbass in eastern Ukraine where reportedly three large pockets of Ukrainian troops are either surrounded (2) and all but surrounded and self-defence forces and Russian troops closing in.
Meanwhile the Russian military appears to have Kiev surrounded and is largely maintaining its position awaiting developments in the ongoing negotiations.
In recent times Russia has begun to go on the offensive against foreign mercenaries based in Ukraine destroying any associated weaponry and decimating their numbers. Expanding these attacks to include any military supplies arriving from EU nations is extremely likely and Russia has issued warnings on this topic that these can be expected.
With both Biden and Zelenskyy talking up the prospect of a chemical weapons attack a false flag event, a last gasp attempt to counter the inexorable gains the Russian military continues to make is very likely. As was the case in Syria this will fly in the face of logic as it will again be said that the winning side has perpetrated the atrocity. Of course this is, without doubt, the reason why western mainstream media and western political elites are talking of Russia losing this war or being frustrated at slow progress.
Vladimir Putin and others in Russia’s high command have stated many times however that the campaign is going according to plan on the timetable agreed before its initiation. However, to make the charge of a chemical attack work western populations must be thoroughly conditioned by repeated statement that Russia is now frustrated with the campaign’s lack of progress and ready to use this desperate method to break some kind of non-existent deadlock.
It appears very likely that this is the hidden reason behind the slow progress of the negotiations from the Ukrainian side, in order to create THE event that will lead the West to implement a no-fly zone over Ukraine, the only possible positive factor to save Zelenskyy and the Euromaidan project.
So far, various set-ups have been used to force the West’s hand in this respect:
Nuclear power plant.
And all this amid a concerted western mainstream media effort to pull as many heartstrings as possible using similar disreputable methods as those employed in the failed western project in Syria, women, children, the elderly, accusations amounting to targeted demonization saying the Russian military INTEND the deaths of children, hospital patients etc… though no one can say why they should in any way actively intend these deaths. The greater likelihood is that these events are set ups or have been instigated by the fascistic militias who see their end coming fast unless they can bring in western military assistance and fast.
However, the western powers and NATO high command know what a no-fly zone set up by them would bring, a full scale war with Russia which could easily escalate to the use of tactical battleground and then an intercontinental nuclear missile exchange. They are likely to remain totally immune to the entreaties by Zelenskyy and also to those of western mass media also.
If a chemical weapon false flag attack does occur even this is unlikely to force the West’s hand in creating a no-fly zone and it is hard to see how the general hatred toward Russia fomented in the West could be heightened much further or what extra sanctions could be applied.
As to sanctions Russia has published a list of countermeasures which will be added to over time. The ruble, which dropped significantly in value, has begun to rise once again. Oil supplies are remaining fairly steady it seems as are gas supplies. Russia is adjusting well to the new situation by all accounts and an analysis has given Russia a good chance of stabilising its economy in 2023 and going into growth once again in 2024.
The indicators are that Russia will continue to press forward to achieve its goal of making Ukraine a relatively normal state with normal institutions, good relations with all neighbours and a renewed tolerance for minorities, Crimea recognised as part of the Russian Federation and the new republics independent entities fully able to determine their own future, a future I believe most probably lies within the Russian Federation.