The Ukrainians have been demonstrating a colossal ability in the information war. Here is the press conference of three Russian prisoners of war. They reveal interesting aspects of the war’s ongoing operation. A war that started already in 2014.
It’s been 12 days of the Russian escalation of the 2014 war agains Ukraine. The situation hasn’t changed much in the last days. What’s new is combat taking place in Izyum (SE of Kharkiv) and the area of Russian control NW of Kyiv has expanded towards Korosten.
Overall, it’s getting increasingly difficult for the Russian forces to sustain the operation. General Valery “Doctrine” Gerasimov’s nephew, Major General Vitaly Gerasimov, was killed yesterday. He was the chief of staff of the 41st Army and the operation commander in Kharkiv. It’s the second Russian general this week and the third overall. To compare how low is the probability of general officers dying in combat, the only American general to die during Afghanistan and Iraq was Major General Harold Greene in 2014. If they’re sending generals to the field, a fair hypothesis is that they are running out of mid-management. Besides, the soldiers seem to have very low morale, and Ukrainian resistance is incredibly strong and creative. The Ukrainian forces were able to destroy 35 Russian helicopters in an attack against the Kherson airbase.
There are many problems with logistics and equipment. Besides running out of gas and diesel and equipment braking because of poor maintenance, some examples are:. The Su-34 are using commercial GPS kits in their cockpits that seems to be made in the USA. This might support my hypothesis that they didn’t have transponders either, when some dangerous episodes of Russian jet fighters and commercial airliners getting to close happened some years ago. This compromises operational security. The very expensive crypto-phones ERA introduced by the Russian MoD in 2021 – and guaranteed to work in any condition — aren’t working. They need 3G/4G and Russian troops are destroying cell towers. Thus, they are equipped with secure phones that don’t work in the areas they operate. Soldiers are receiving food rations that are out of validity. In some cases, since 2015.
That said, it is necessary to consider that Russia is still much stronger than Ukraine.
At the political level, it’s possible to see that Russia is reducing its demands. Yesterday, they were three:
- To recognize Crimea as Russian territory and the independence of Luhansk and Donetsk “People” Republics.
- No NATO.
- Zelenski stays pro-forma President, but the unpopular pro-Russia politician Yuriy Boyko is appointed Prime-Minister.
Ukraine refused to accept. New negotiations are expected to be held this Thursday.
The Komsolmolskaya Pravda published a “debate” between a journalist and a “political scientist” showing three possible scenarios for Ukraine:
1. Optimistic plan: Ukraine remains in its current size (minus the territories of the DPR and LPR within their administrative boundaries).For that, Ukraine would have to:
i. officially recognizes the Crimea as Russian territory and the independence of Donbass;
ii. introduce into the constitution a provision of neutrality and non-alignment;
iii. the renunciation of nuclear weapons;
iv. extradite war criminals at the request of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation;
v. fixes the position of the Russian language as the second state language.
2. Realistic plan: divide Ukraine into several parts
Create several formally independent republics similarly to the DPR and LPR, on the basis the of predominantly Russian-speaking regions of historical Slobozhanshchina and Novorossiya – Kharkiv People’s, Dnepropetrovsk, Zaporozhye, Kherson, Nikolaev and Odessa At the second stage, at the unification congress of people’s representatives, they, together with the DPR and LPR, as well as Pridnestrovie, which will join them, can declare the creation of a new independent state that is in close allied relations with the Russian Federation – Novorossiya.
3. Worst case plan: destroy Ukraine as a country
If the “special operation” becomes irreversible and completely uncontrollable, Novorossiya and Little Russia will simply enter Russia as republics, territories and regions. Romania and Hungary will be able to claim Bukovina and Transcarpathia, and Poland will be able to claim six western regions.
DISCLAIMER: This list might be correct, but it isn’t wholly trustworthy. Take it with a pinch of salt.
Apple Pay: complete block
Apple: complete exit from the market
Adidas – refusal to work with the national football team
Audi – out of the market
AMD – a ban on supplying microchips and a ban on supplying video cards soon.
British Petroleum – selling 20% shares out of Rosnefty
BBC – Broadcast License Review
BMW – closing plants, blocking supplies
Bolt – 5 million euros of aid to Ukraine
Boeing – no maintenance for Russian airlines
Chevrolet: out the market
Cannes Festival – RF delegation blocked
Cadillac – out of the market
Carlsberg – export restriction
Cex Io – crypto platform banning ru users
Cinema 4D – app not working
Coca Cola – off the Market
Danone: out of the market
Disney – cancelling all movies
Dell – exit the market
Dropbox – will stop operating in the country in a few days
DHL – out of the market
Eurovision – Disqualification
Ericsson – exit the market
Exxon Mobil – recall all specialists from oil companies of Russia
Etsy is a block of all balances on ru accounts
Facebook is a ban on rf social media accounts
FedEx is a complete ban on supplies
Formula 1 – cancelled tournament in Sochi
Ford to close all stores
FIFA – disqualification of the national team for the World Cup and a ban on holding any international matches in the Russian Federation
Google Pay – Partial Block
Google – $15 million for humanitarian aid to Ukraine
Google Maps – info block for Russians
General Motors – Stop Exports
HP – no longer loading laptops
Harley Davidson – Deliveries Cut
Instagram is blocking propaganda
Intel is a ban on microchips.
Jaguar – off the market
Jooble – the service was deleted
Lenovo – exit the market
LinkedIn – preparing to leave the country completely
MOK – cancellation of all competitions
Mastercard – suspending card production, turning off several banks
Maersk – a delivery stop in/from the Russian Federation
Mercedes – exit from the country
Megogo – Deleting All Russian Movies
Metro – 10k employees – closing
Mitsubishi – employees of 141 service center – closing
Microsoft Office – a wide range of measures being discussed
Mobile World Congress – the delegation is not accredited
Netflix – a block for Russian subscriptions, stopping the production of Russian TV series
Nike – closing all stores
Nintendo – a ban on purchases in rubles
Nestle – closes all 6 factories in Russia
OnlyFans – shut down in the country
Landscape – Blocking
PayPal – freeze withdrawal accounts
Paramount – movie rental block
Parimatch – Franchise revoked
PlayStation – no payment possible
Pornhub – content ban
Porsche – exit from the market
Renault – exit the market
Samsung pay – service locking
Snapchat – out of the app in the Russian Federation and Blyadorussia, 15 million $ help Ukraine
Scania – exit from the Russian Federation
SpaceX – Starlink delivery to Ukraine
Shell – termination of contract with Gazprom
Spotify – impossible to pay a subscription
Sony – Movie Rental Block
Twitter – Russian citizens cannot register accounts
Toyota – closing
UEFA – cancellation of the Champions League final in St. Petersburg, ban on all clubs to participate in the Champions League and LE, $ 1 million in aid to Ukraine, break the contract with the general sponsor of Gazprom
UPS is a complete ban on supplies
Universal pictures – movie rental block
Viber – $ 9 million aid to Ukraine from CEO Rakuten
Visa – suspension of card production at least
Volvo – coming out of the market
YouTube – blocking hundreds of channels and their monetization
Warner Bros – Cancellation of all movie rentals
Webmoney – ban on transactions
Volkswagen – leaving the country
Zoom – review of software development licenses