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THE WEST HAS WOKEN UP: IT TURNS OUT RUSSIA WANTS VICTORY, NOT DEFEAT (31 01 2023)

Political strategic level
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that there was no sign that Putin had changed the objective of the invasion of Ukraine. "Today nobody can say when the war will end. But we know that this is a war of invasion, it is indeed a war of President Putin's choice. He has chosen to invade another country, a sovereign democratic European state. President Putin can end the war today. The problem, however, is that we do not see any signs that President Putin and the officials in Moscow are preparing for peace. We see the opposite," said the Alliance leader.
Stoltenberg notes that the Russians have mobilised more than 200,000 troops and are preparing for further war. They are buying new weapons and ammunition, which shows that Russia is not planning for peace, but is trying to seize Ukraine. Finally, from the lips of the Secretary-General of NATO came the realisation that 'as long as Putin believes that he can win on the battlefield, he will not sit down at the table and engage in good-faith negotiations'.
Yes, both Putin and the whole of Russia will fight 'until victory'. It is amazing that the NATO leadership, after one year of brutal war, has finally shaken off its illusions about negotiating with the Kremlin, which may not be seeking peace through war after all. Hopefully, it will not take years to realise that this war was not started by Putin alone, but by the collective elite of the FSB, the GRU and other power structures.
The Polish Prime Minister, Mateusz Morawiecki, has stated that Poland may transfer its F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine if NATO agrees to such a decision. "Just like a few months ago, when there was talk about MiGs, so is the case with any other air force that might be transferred in coordination with NATO countries. In this case, we will act in a fully coordinated manner", Morawiecki said.
Joe Biden has reportedly said "no" to sending F-16s to Ukraine.
Ukraine needs at least 300 tanks and 500 infantry fighting vehicles for counter-attack operations this spring, Ukrainian Deputy Foreign Minister Andriy Melnik said. The politician referred to figures provided by the Ukrainian military leadership, the Minister of Defence Oleksiy Reznikoff and the Commander of the Armed Forces Valeriy Zaluzhny. It is noted that this is the minimum that will allow the Ukrainian army to plan an operation with minimum losses but maximum impact.
"This is an extremely complex operation that can only be successful if we have enough armoured vehicles, tanks, trained men, artillery, air support, drones. The world hasn't seen anything like this since 1945. This is the worst war on the European continent," said Melnyk.
We understand that today's politicians are entertainers and stars, figuratively and literally, but can requests for planned armaments and preferences, and subsequently timetables for the delivery of arms and numbers of ammunition, not be announced on TV and Internet portals? It is somehow strange that the old adage of the Iraq war that 'if CNN has not announced that the war has started, it has not started yet' is still being followed.
Of course, everyone wants personal glory, rising ratings and a pat on the back, but we would advise that Russia's SVR should not have to snivel out of boredom, because all the military information is available to every reading-literate moron on the Internet.
The Polish Prime Minister has put forward a plan to increase defence spending, claiming that the country needs to arm itself 'more quickly' because of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Poland's defence budget will amount to a record 4% of gross domestic product this year, the third highest percentage among NATO countries. Last year, the country's military spending represented 2.4% of GDP.
Poland is becoming a military leader in the region, which is very important for Lithuania.
It is about to be a year since Russia is carrying out large-scale military action in Ukraine, and the question is being asked more and more frequently how it is that Russia still has sufficient funds to continue the invasion. Every day, Moscow spends huge sums of money to send more troops and equipment to the front lines. Western experts admit that, even with these military expenditures rising, and with the threat to Russia's long-term economic growth, there is no sign that Führer Putin is thinking of retreating.
Meanwhile, the Kremlin claims that Putin and Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman have spoken by phone about cooperation within the OPEC+ group of oil-producing countries to maintain oil price stability.
Moscow is demonstrating its influence in an oil-rich country that was one of the main tools in the destruction of the Soviet Union's economy. However, after the occupation of Crimea, the Middle East was overlooked by the West, and Putin and his entourage have moved in. You know, wherever a Russian goes, he does not leave willingly. So we have what we have, looking at the price hikes at the petrol stations. If we had not slept, prices would have been twice as low.
Reuters, which claims to be one of the most solid news agencies, has announced that the Baltic countries bought twice as much Russian liquefied natural gas last year. According to Reuters' calculations, gathered from three businesses and cargo handlers serving the region, Russia's total sales of LPG to Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia increased from 159,000 tonnes to 331,000 tonnes. Part of this gas was reportedly sold to Ukraine. The increase in Russian LNG purchases is said to have come despite the fact that the three Baltic States, all members of NATO and the European Union, have strongly condemned Moscow's actions in Ukraine and Europe is struggling to find new sources of the fuel in a tight global market.
Let us not pull our hair out, or the hair of others. The agency is solid, its information has been picked up and published by many Ukrainian portals, but the report is Russian. Reuters, on the other hand, has a contract with TASS, and very often, in a straightforward manner, picks up and republishes Kremlin-prepared news. In the absence of any primary source and of any specific information, the most likely primary source of information is on the computers of the Moscow information trolls.
Be that as it may, our government and politicians must react immediately to such reports, because Lithuania looks very pathetic in this context.
Although last week Turkey suspended NATO talks with Sweden and Finland because of the protests in Stockholm during which the Koran was burnt, yesterday Erdogan 'forgave' Finland and 'allowed' it to join NATO. But he is blocking Sweden.
Turkey and Hungary are the only members of the 30-nation alliance that have not yet accepted the Nordic countries' request. "We can send a different message to Finland on their NATO application and Sweden would be shocked to see our message. But Finland should not make the same mistake that Sweden made", Erdogan lectured the Swedes. Yesterday he reiterated his demand that Sweden hand over some 120 suspects: "if you absolutely want to join NATO, return these terrorists to us".
The G7 and EU ambassadors expect Ukraine to update its e-declarations and adopt a national anti-corruption programme. Ukraine's anti-corruption strategy would help Ukraine save up to 200 billion hryvnias of taxpayers' money a year and tackle corruption in the most affected areas. The programme aims to strengthen Ukraine's anti-corruption institutions and implement EU anti-corruption standards in key areas of public life and the economy. This is a crucial step in Ukraine's integration into the EU and NATO.
We believe that it is very important that, despite its status as a country at war, the Ukrainian authorities are being pushed to renew their corruption control programme and institutions. Otherwise, not only will effective support not be possible in the current period, but also the reconstruction process will be hobbled.
Operational level
The Russians are slowly moving deeper into Ukrainian territory, forming two wedges in the north and south of Bakhmut.
Now that NATO has finally realised that Russia is waging a war of attrition, prominent Russian "oppositionists" have been running the old plaque that a coup has already taken place in the Kremlin. The Putin-Prigozhin-Kadyrov-Surovikin faction in the EU has been pushed out of power, the 'chef' has been or will be killed and Kadyrov is in hiding. The Gerasimov group has seized power and the Kremlin is preparing for an armed coup in order to ensure that the local oligarchs and the Putin clan retain their seized wealth. Coup preparations are also reportedly under way in the Russian governorates. In a word, the picture is being painted that Putin's government is hanging on by its fingernails and that tomorrow, the day after tomorrow, everything will fall apart and Ukraine will win the war in five minutes. That is why the West has crossed all the red lines. The Kremlin is no longer creating any imperial fantasies, but is seeking to preserve its status quo. Russia is supposedly about to enter a civil war, because 27 private armies have already been created to defend the resources seized by the local authorities - the governors and oligarchs. The Shoigu is said to have already created its own military formation called "Shield". So, supposedly, something like a "mafia war" is about to begin.
These are the rumours of very prominent Russian "experts". God forbid that they should be true, but such fantasies, which have no connection with today's reality, remind us more of the fairy tales being created in Lubyanka for the naive in the West, who believe that Putin is about to fall, that there will soon be peace, and that it is therefore not worth making too much effort to intervene in the war and support Ukraine.
These fairy tales have been followed since the first day of the war, except that people's ability to concentrate and remember is very, very limited.
Russia has moved additional troops and equipment to its western Kursk region on the border with Ukraine. Local authorities claim that Kursk has been repeatedly shelled by Ukraine since Russia invaded Ukraine. Some of the occupiers have entered from the Kursk area and attacked the Kyiv area. Kyiv warns that Russia may again attempt to seize the territories of north-eastern Ukraine and points to increased overall military activity in Belarus.
Tactical level
In the past day, the occupiers have carried out 3 air strikes and 4 missile strikes. More than 60 rocket attacks, mainly on residential houses in Kherson and Kharkiv. Civilian casualties.
The Russian marauders continue to attack in the direction of Lyman and Bakhmut, with heavy casualties. In the direction of Avdiivka and Novopavlovsk and in the direction of Kupiansk and Zaporizhzhya, the Russians are defending themselves. The Russian troops are said to be exhausted by the intensity of the fighting and are defying the decisions of their military-political leadership.
According to our knowledge, the Ukrainian troops at Bakhmut, Vuhledar are no less exhausted and exhausted, and an urgent rotation of troops is necessary.
It is reported that the occupiers are running out of places to treat the wounded and have set up a military field hospital in Luhansk, on the territory of maternity hospital No 3.
The Ukrainian Defence Military Aviation has struck 4 enemy live-fire sites, while rocket forces and artillery units have hit 3 Driski checkpoints, 4 live-fire sites and 2 occupiers' ammunition depots.
Comment
The President of Ukraine has spoken of a renewed offensive by the occupiers. "It is clear that this is revenge. To be honest, we already think that revenge has not ended in Donbas. And it is constantly intensifying, daily intensifying. Every day new groups of troops arrive or the number of "Vagnerians" increases."
Mr Zelensky stated that he believes that the Russian Federation will not succeed in taking over Ukraine, which is slowly preparing for a counter-offensive. The President of Ukraine therefore asks for immediate support. It is reported that more and more information is coming in about a planned new Russian offensive. Last week, Oleksiy Danilov, Secretary of the National Security and Defence Council, said that this could happen in the next one or two months.
However, what can be seen on the ground indicates that the Russian offensive has already begun. This seems to be a cold shower for the President of Ukraine, who has finally realised that Ukraine may well lose - that is to say, be occupied. The Ukrainian President has stopped worrying about public meetings and sensitive appearances for a while, and has finally got to grips with the situation on the front line and seen the reality. And it is really quite bad. This is the most difficult moment for Kyiv, and especially for the President of Ukraine, to realise that the ovations, tears, hugs, nominations for Man of the Planet and other moments of glory are not enough to achieve victory. In the event of defeat, that same crowd can spit on you, tear you to pieces and throw you into the dustbin of history.
It is time to end the wartime show.
It is time to start preparing for a real, long and very hard war.
Photo: Bradleys, which will be handed over to Ukraine, roll onto a ferry at the Port of Charleston.
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