Espreso. Global

Why didn't the Russian army flee behind the Urals when they saw Leopards?

10 December, 2023 Sunday

Let's talk about one important item on the current agenda. It is both about the war and also not about the war. Analyzing why the miracle didn't happen

All this speculative discussion of the summer-autumn campaign of the Ukrainian Defense Forces, current affairs at the front and in the rear, all the political and simply emotional disputes in Ukraine, most of the Western analytics now is an attempt to find a rational explanation for why a miracle did not happen. That is, why the Russian army did not flee behind the Ural Mountains when it saw the "leopards."

Analyzing why the miracle didn't happen without looking in the mirror too much.

The reality is that everyone made miscalculations. From our esteemed "masters of controlled escalation" Biden and Sullivan, to European officials and other partners who were wrong in their expectations and in the amount of resources needed. And to Ukrainian politicians and the military, at various levels.

These mistakes are mostly quite natural. For the most part, they are dictated by war-related uncertainty, lack of data, and cognitive misconceptions. For example, the striking inefficiency of the Russians in 2022 and its extrapolation to their defense capabilities.

In other words, all mistakes can be explained logically, recognized, reflected upon, and moved on. Take them into account and spend the next year differently.

This is most likely what will happen in the end. But that's what the proverb says: "Victory has many fathers, and defeat is always an orphan." Because the public (collective) in Ukraine, Europe, and the United States demands explanations. Because political rivals and critics alike demand clarity. Because the political struggle goes on forever.

So, of course, it was inevitable that the mess would happen. The statements of varying degrees of adequacy from the fan clubs of politicians and the military (both in Ukraine and abroad) were also inevitable. The only question is that amidst all this information hype and the search for someone to hold responsible, real work on mistakes should be done, among other things.

Judging by the intentions to approach the fortifications more carefully, by the talk in the West that they have not given Ukraine weapons, by the fact that the problems are being discussed, there is hope for positive changes. And that conclusions will be drawn.

Again, we shouldn't think that 100% of ignorance or objective problems will be solved. It never happens anywhere and in anything. And the higher the level of tension and dynamics, the more mistakes will inevitably be made.

And the main conclusion from all this is that we need more modern weapons, and for this, Western politicians and the military must stop believing in miracles. In the miracle where Ukraine wins with the current technological level of support.

Ukraine's defense forces cannot, by their own heroism, gain at least parity in the air and destroy Russian logistics on the far approaches to the front line. And without the first and second, it will be extremely expensive and time-consuming to win this war.

So, yes, we can spend a long time figuring out how bad Zelenskyy is and where Zaluzhnyi went wrong. But the truth is that how the war will develop further depends much more on the political will of Ukraine's partners. It will be a Korean scenario, a completely victorious one or something else.

Ukraine needs more weapons. And the fact that its partners are talking about this more and more makes me cautiously optimistic about this issue. I hope that we will be smart enough to unite our efforts around this issue, no matter what fan club everyone belongs to.


About the author. Yuriy Bohdanov, publicist, specialist in strategic communications in business, public administration and politics

The editors do not always share the opinions expressed by the blog authors.

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