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Political war v/s Military war

Updated: Oct 16, 2022

Our perception shapes our reality.

Propaganda, which is the shaping of perception using the media is an integral part of war.

In war one of the goals of propaganda is to demoralise the opponent and their supporters, so that they withdraw support to their own political and military leadership.

The Ukrainians have of late adopted a strategy, reminiscent of the Tet offensive launched by the North Vietnamese and the Vietcong in 1968. The North Vietnamese reframed the perspective, projecting the prospect of an un-winnable 'forever war' to shock and demoralise the American military and population particularly during an election year.

The political impact of the Tet offensive upon the incumbent Lyndon Johnson government accused of misleading Americans was so adverse that he did not dare to stand for re-election. America subsequently withdrew from the Vietnam war in humiliation within a couple of years. In spite of a loss of approx. 50,000 soldiers the war was won by the North Vietnamese not by military but political means.

We now witness the same strategy being adopted by the collective West in Ukraine.

The highly proclaimed Ukrainian counter offensives in Kharkov, Lyman and Kherson areas are not military successes but rather strategic failures.

However as far as the optics go, it has succeeded politically in a noticeable demoralising effect on Russian troops and population. Russian media space is abuzz with chatter condemning their own government and military for not doing enough to quash Ukraine and baying for blood.

Drawing upon the propaganda skills of the collective West and Ukraine, the world has been made to mistakenly believe that Ukraine has turned the tide against the Russians. When in reality the truth is the exact opposite. The hope of the Ukrainian counter offensive is to trigger a political crisis in Moscow and effect a regime change in Russia. This is not mere speculation but openly stated by the collective West's leadership.

Here are the facts.

In an all for nothing attempt not unlike the Tet offensive, Ukraine has pulled out its reserves from every other place in Ukraine such as Odessa, Kiev, etc. except in Bakhmut (which is being defended by 30,000 Ukrainians) and Zaporizhzhia (where 20,000 men are amassed for a planned fourth counter offensive), coupled with recruits freshly trained by NATO and pressed them into 3 highly publicised counter offensives.

  1. Ukraine deployed 9,000 men in the Kharkov counter offensive to occupy empty villages covering an area of 1,500 sq. kms which the Russians had withdrawn from before the offensive simply because it did not fit in with the short to medium term military objectives of the Russians. However in advancing from their fortified areas to occupy these lands the Ukrainians lost a significant part of their manpower and equipment to artillery and missile fire. All this whilst the Russians lost few men and hardly any equipment.

  2. The same is true for the Kherson counteroffensive where Ukraine pressed into service approx. 25,000 men and several hundred armoured vehicles and about 400 tanks. Again the Ukrainian losses were significantly high against much much lower Russian losses.

  3. In capturing Lyman, Ukraine deployed 6,000 men, a significant number of them killed and injured along with huge equipment losses fighting a Russian garrison force of about 500 men. The Russians made a tactical retreat, giving up a mostly empty town and very sparsely populated villages of limited strategic value, with a loss of about 100 men and little equipment.

One sunny day does not represent a summer, nor does a tactical advantage represent a strategic victory. Like chess players Russians are wearing down the Ukrainians, sacrificing pawns to capture more important pieces and gain strategic advantage.

Ukraine's forces in these three counter offensives consists mainly of infantry supported by light armoured vehicles and tanks. Without artillery cover and air support, attacked Russian positions and forces backed up by heavy artillery, armoured vehicles, tanks and missile support.

While Ukraine wins territory and totals media eyeballs, Russia is totalling kills by systematically degrading Ukrainian military strength and capabilities, at a low cost to themselves.

The propaganda efforts have not ben able to initiate or ignite discontent within the Russian population and armed forces against the democratically elected Putin government. The poll rating carried out by pro Western agencies show 73% (down from 80% in June) of the people, support for the Putin government and their actions.

While the Ukrainians and the collective West tom-tom the attacks, the Russians simply withdrew and then held the line. As of writing this article the counter offensive has stalled if not petered out. In fact the Russians have begun to retake some areas lost in the Ukrainians counter offensive.

Ukraine now has retaken territory that it cannot hold due to a shortage of manpower, this is in spite of 6 rounds of mobilisation. Ukraine is now considering conscripting women and the elderly.

Almost all conflicts must come to an end after talks and coming to some mutually agreeable terms, no matter how distasteful it may be.

Already Ukraine has lost 20% of its most valuable and productive territory, 7 million of the most talented workforce to emigration, 360,000 (69,000killed and 280,000 wounded) of its soldiers and losing more by the day.

Ukrainian leadership has wanted to talk and settle the conflict as they demonstrated in the Istanbul talks in April 2022, but the Americans and the British the primary backers of Zelensky's government forced it to back out and never negotiate

Ukraine's refusal to talk may result in the end of Ukrainian nation as we know it and that will be a great tragedy.

The important question is 'why is Ukraine being sacrificed by its backers and what are the motives of this war?' will be discussed in another article.


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