The decisive battle for Russia is scheduled for spring, by Dmitry Bavyrin for RIANOVOSTI. 02.28.2023.
To the statement of the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky about the preparation of the invasion of the Armed Forces of Ukraine into the Crimea, Russia has long had a ready answer - "just try, clown." Unfortunately this answer doesn't fit anymore. Because the "clown" will inevitably try.
A “big counter-offensive of the Armed Forces of Ukraine” is scheduled for this spring, and, as almost everyone believes, in the direction of Crimea. This decision is not so much even Zelensky's, it is a single-digit stake of the USA and NATO in the current conflict. A month ago, they spoke about this in semi-hints, but now they are talking openly, because hiding preparations for an offensive is simply stupid: tanks, for example, are not needed for other purposes, and this season Kiev is supported mainly by tanks.
The purpose of the counter-offensive is to inflict a local military defeat on the Russian Armed Forces and thereby prove to the skeptics that Kyiv's multibillion-dollar support brings results. If, along the way, Ukraine manages to occupy Crimea, the West will not object - and this is also stated openly.
In general, this is not clowning, it is much worse. This is a direct and immediate threat to the security and territorial integrity of Russia with the use of modern NATO weapons. That's why the jokes are over.
The measure and practice of response will be determined by the Russian command. But already now it is necessary to proceed from the fact that a peaceful dialogue with Kiev and its allies is impossible, and the very idea of such a dialogue is infantile (with all due respect to the Chinese peacekeeping initiatives, rejected by both Kiev and the West). Until the bet on an attack on the territory of Russia plays out, these people will not calm down, neither threats nor exhortations will affect them. They now have all the hopes for this bet, like a gambler mired in debt.
However, responsible politics differs from casinos in that all involved need to give themselves an honest answer to the question "what if not?". What to do if this game is lost by Ukraine, if the Ukrainian army is thrown back, and Kyiv loses control over the next territories?
There they have, in the West, it seems, after all, a casino. Because the first more or less intelligible answer, millions of those asking "what if not" received only the other day. For a whole year before, theses like “we will support Ukraine as long as necessary” were repeated, even if they seemed to be false not only to skeptics (the simpler Anglo-Saxons also know - never say never, never say never).
It is significant that such an answer was given not by the powers that be and not even by a politician, but by the tabloid Bild , the most widely read newspaper in Germany . Referring to sources in the government of Germany and the United States, they write that the promises to support Kyiv "to the bitter end" are a bluff and window dressing. In reality, Zelensky was given an ultimatum until autumn: if the offensive of the Armed Forces of Ukraine fails, Ukraine will be forced to negotiate with Russia, using arms supplies and other assistance as leverage.
Bild edition is "yellow", format "chancellor and boobs", but informed and truly popular. You can not believe him, but you can believe, especially since what is written looks logical and sensible. One thing is confusing: if the political processes around Ukraine over the past ten years were subject to logic and common sense, the SVO would not be required.
It seems that the main purpose of the publication is to calm the disturbed German public, suggesting that this horror is not endless. After all, it is the German public that is losing more from the current conflict than any other (with the exception of the Ukrainian one), and the policy of the form “only a military defeat of Russia will suit us” inevitably rests on its historical trauma.
In reality, nothing so far (except for Bild) speaks in favor of the fact that the upcoming counter-offensive of the Armed Forces of Ukraine is really a "last attempt". The next round, a new chance, another collection of weapons from the bins of NATO is already guessed, only the emphasis will most likely be placed on combat aviation (they say, it will definitely work with airplanes) and even more long-range missiles. If for persuasiveness it is necessary to organize a terrible provocation a la Bucha, there will be a provocation. If a nuclear bomb is in the hands of the Kyiv regime, it will also be blown up.
In the West, they probably believe that they are able to prevent an extreme development of events, but the world remembers many golems who went against their American creators. Even if we take only the latest wars with the participation of the United States, these are the Afghan Mujahideen, and the Syrian Islamists, and personally Saddam Hussein, whom America supported at the first stage, including during the war of conquest against Iran.
In general, many things are possible in the future, including very terrible ones. Bild suspiciously underestimates both the power of inertia (entering negotiations means for Zelensky that tens of thousands of lives and square kilometers were wasted by him, after this they shoot), and the significance of further containment of Russia as a priority for Western elites. No matter how much the peace-loving part of the Germans and other European peoples would like, in case of a tactical loss in such cases, they do not play scenes like “well, it didn’t work out, well, I’ll go, perhaps.”
But at one point, the publication sees the root - where it does not contradict anyone. The "spring counteroffensive of the Armed Forces of Ukraine" is one of the main events of the year, which will have long-term consequences. This is a crash test for Russia's ambitions and a really significant round, the loss of which could cost her dearly.
In case of our success, we should not be Germans and lull ourselves with hopes - then there will be new rounds. An end to them will be put only by a fundamentally different military-political reality in the formerly Ukrainian territories, which will be impossible to deny (for example, the lack of access to the sea for the Ukrainian regime).
But even then it will not be "as before", just as "as before" did not come after the war in Korea or the conflict over West Berlin . The Cold War didn't just last longer than the "hot" ones - it literally consisted of them.
Our allies are the same, tried and tested, reliable - the army and the navy. Being usually in the status of circumstances - a kind of background for big politics, they are now administering this big politics. It depends only on their strengths and weaknesses when negotiators, diplomats, lawyers and all those with whom hopes for a peaceful resolution of the conflict are connected will be able to join the work on settling the pan-European crisis.
Sooner or later, things will come to them - and specifically Ukraine will be affected earlier than the system of international security. It is with the restructuring of the latter under new circumstances that the end of the global conflict should be linked, and not with whether Zelensky will be sent new tanks after his "march to the Crimea."
The ingloriously devastating end of such a "campaign" is Russia's primary goal in 2023, the only acceptable response to the threats of the President of Ukraine. This development of events was imposed on us, and we not only obey, but we cannot cancel it.
Then there is still a long and difficult path ahead, but right now we have come to a fork in the road that will open a new chapter in the Russian history textbook. Of course, it will not be Zelensky who will write it, and we know this, but now it is necessary to prove this not in blogs, not in the media, not in official comments, not in negotiations, and in general - not with arguments from the realm of words.
The battle for a peaceful resolution of the conflict has already been lost. The battle for Russia is scheduled for spring.