Russia won't do that. Their force structure is not up to it. Impossible to do a long term occupation of most of Europe. And for what?
I think what Lsos is trying to say is that the US wants the EU and Russia to fight to damage each other in a way that they can avoid getting involved... the excuse will be we can get involved but that would mean WWIII and everyone dies so the US is going to let the EU fight Russia on its own to damage them both and leave the US to make money rebuilding the sides it wants to with the money it prints and has an endless supply... a requirement for support would be to trade in US dollars again of course.
If they mobilize they can.
I think what he is suggesting is that the plans of Putin do not include restoring the Soviet Union or invading and occupying Europe like Hitler and Napoleon wanted to do before him... he is eliminating threats and if Poland makes itself part of the threat then they wont be invaded but their military will be attacked... they have an air force and air delivered weapons that could be very dangerous to Russia and Russian forces in Ukraine so they would have to be eliminated... no invasion but elimination of threats might feel very much the same as invasion and occupation for their military.
Hitting civilian infrastructure like power stations and bridges that after the war Russia wont care about needing to rebuild because they will spend as much rebuilding hostile territory in Europe as the west spent rebuilding hostile countries they invaded in the Middle East and elsewhere... zero.
Destroying Romania to create a land route to Serbia is also a possibility.
Wouldn't work... anything using that land route would not be safe by any measure which renders it useless.
Azerbaijan is also a big gaz supplier for Europe destroying it is a solution for Russia if Turkey keep pushing its pawns there.
Certainly if they try to play up smashing their gas production infrastructure would be a great goal for the Russias because it is a rival gas source so destroying it would benefit them financially while at the same time hurt Turkey and the EU financially too... so if they encourage such crap they will pay a real price for that too.
Russia has nothing to loose anymore since they are sanctions at 100% and US will never try a military war woth them. They can vbomb anyone now.
There is still the fact that nuclear war is suicide, but otherwise their hands are free... and the west has got no idea what they will or will not do, which must be a bit uncomfortable...
If Russia does take the Baltics it would solve two problems simultaneously. It would prove that the US won't come to the aid of NATO countries either and give Russia a land bridge to Kaliningrad. It would likely spook the Finns and Swedes out of NATO if it is done before they join.
But the fundamental problem really is what the f do they want the baltic states for... they are bloody useless and would need to be subsidised and supported like the Soviets used to do using their ports and rail infrastructure which would all need to be rebuilt and that is to use Russias own ports less to provide traffic for these hostile little testicles of countries.
And the effect might result in the fins and swedes joining HATO anyway... they are just that anti russian any excuse the US gives for doing nothing will be accepted...
The NSA must have some really heavy dirt on EU leaders to make them perform at Americas every command... kiddy fiddlers or satan worshippers?