Israeli Conflict Takes Eschatological Turn + Ukraine War Updates
As we reach the first week of the Israeli conflict which began on October 7th, Israel prepares its alleged ground invasion into Gaza.
There are still many who believe they’re bluffing, many voices on both sides, including Israelis, who say it will be suicide, as the destruction in Gaza has created a landscape that’s ripe for al-Qassam fighters to wage a bloody, attritional guerilla war against the IDF. It’s difficult to evaluate for lack of intimate knowledge of what Hamas actually possesses in terms of stocked materiel. What they claim to have could be exaggerated bluffs, so it’s impossible to know for sure how successful they could be.
But many people, including MI6 figures, believe it’s a trap:
Attacks by the Hamas militant group were likely a ploy to lure Israel into a costly ground invasion of Gaza, the former head of Britain's MI6 spy agency said.
Alex Younger, who served as the head of the UK's foreign intelligence service from 2014 to 2020, gave his comments in an interview on the BBC's "The Today Podcast."
💬 "I absolutely understand and endorse Israel's right to defend themselves in the circumstances, and indeed to restore the credibility of those defenses, so that that sense of psychological safety can be restored to the people.
But here's the thing, you shouldn't do what your enemy wants you to do,...
...And it's really obvious now that Hamas are essentially laying a trap for Israel, And [it] will be well pleased if Israel commits itself to an open-ended, full-scale ground invasion of Gaza because of the scale and intensity of conflict that that would entail, and the loss of innocent life that would inevitably follow and the radicalization that would engender, and the extent to which will put Israel's allies and partners in the region in an impossible position."
What’s emerged thus far is the absolute certainty of what Israel’s plans really amount to. I can now say with utmost confidence exactly what the overall strategy is, and it is one I outlined last time; it’s simply that it has now been confirmed by Israel itself.
They’ve declared their demand for all of northern Gaza to be cleared, with over 1.1 million Palestinians to head to the south half of Gaza:
Naturally, the northern Erez checkpoint is off limits, and they want Palestinians to flood south, eventually to use the Rafah checkpoint to clear out to Egypt.
The goal is for the IDF to storm northern Gaza and force everyone to the south. Once that’s accomplished, they will announce a new sector to be cleared, and continue pushing southward until every single Palestinian is ethnically cleansed and pushed out through Rafah into Egypt’s Sinai.
Don’t believe me? It was confirmed just yesterday in a brilliant verbal trap set by Marc Lamont Hill in his interview with advisor to Netanyahu, Danny Ayalon. Listen very carefully to the second half of the interview where Hill cajoles Ayalon into admitting the truth of their plans:
“We want to open a humanitarian corridor so they can leave…”
“Only through the Rafah border right?”
Ayalon gives a very unctuous smirk—he knows he’s been had. Flushing, he desperately tries to deflect to another topic.
It’s ironic, by the way, that Lamont Hill is the guy who was famously fired by CNN for making an “anti-Israel” statement.
It’s clear as day for anyone with eyes to see. Israel is blocking off the northern half of Gaza, bombing anyone who goes there, in order to push the entire population south into Egypt. It’s textbook ethnic cleansing and genocide.
This video from today for instance appears to show a convoy of civilian cars being hit:
It has been precisely geolocated to here: 31.455691, 34.415025
Which is exactly right past the median cut-off line which Israel has declared:
Though the pro-Israel side claims it was a Hamas IED attack aimed at stopping refugees from leaving so that they can be used as human shields.
Of course that’s only a drop in the bucket of the indiscriminate slaughter of civilians we’ve seen from Israel thus far.
The types of dehumanization of the Palestinians we’re now witness to is nearly unimaginable: it’s a campaign of gaslighting on a global scale. We are literally being gaslighted to believe that open, obvious genocide and ethnic cleansing is somehow justified. And by what? A series of fakes and falseflags, all of which are debunked shortly after they’re made.
The 40 beheaded babies scam matched only the infamous Kuwaiti incubators hoax in its sheer cynicism. It was quickly found that the photos posted by Netanyahu’s account, and transmitted all over, were in fact AI generated.
But the corporate, establishment campaign of dehumanization against Palestinians now in full flight is only matched by the one crafted against Russians by the pro-Ukrainian corporate-media complex. Things like the following are disseminated by the minute:
At least there was a timely “community notes” fact check slapped onto the above. And the perpetrator is a self-proclaimed “Human Rights Lawyer”, imagine that?
Furthermore, in this one-sided media campaign, there has been guidance from the top of the corporate chain carefully denoting how the messaging should be managed. For instance, Palestinians can only be “found dead”—using the passive voice which does not ascribe attribution or guilt. But Israelis are to always be written as “killed”, with clear attributive language which establishes direct causality of the crime:
In fact it goes even deeper. The MSM corporations’ own frontline correspondents and photographers are being brutally killed, and they’re not even allowed to say by whom:
Here the Reuters team is forced to announce the death of their videographer—but readers had to add context via ‘community note’ as to who was responsible for that vague ‘death’:
Here the Reuters videographer was magically “killed”:
In the most egregiously convoluted syntactical construction of all, here he was “killed in Lebanon in missile fire from the direction of Israel”:
I mean, good god! How heinous could these corporate presstitute whores get? They are literally not allowed to list Israel as the perpetrator of any crime or killing whatsoever. And the article is still up, for anyone who thinks the headline might be fake.
But it gets worse.
Here, under clear guidance from above, Washington Post is not even permitted to use the word Palestine in its official reporting, and automatically changes it to ‘Palestinian Territories’:
To clarify, NYC held a rally called “All Out For Palestine Rally”, where people waved signs with the name. But in doing its writeup, Washington Post called it the All Out for Palestinian Territories rally. Read below:
They are literally not allowed to use the name Palestine because this legitimizes it, and WaPo’s Zionist owners presumably don’t like that. Particularly given the fact that the new ethnic cleansing genocide being committed by Israel is tasked with eventually getting rid of Gaza and ‘Palestine’ altogether, this can be viewed as part of the early campaign to erase and memory-hole Palestine entirely.
And they were caught doing that before in an even more egregious way, absurdly changing the Palestine Solidarity Movement into the Palestinian Territories Solidarity Movement:
These are shocking attempts from the establishment to erase the identity of the Palestinian people. Let’s not forget that Palestine existed long before the Washington Post would likely care to admit:
Funny how they weren’t referring to it as the “Palestinian Territories” back then.
For those wondering what could be the difference—well, Palestine clearly is suggestive of an official nation state, while relegating it to ‘Palestinian Territories’ strips it of authority and makes it sound more like a loose, politically inconsequential rummage of disparate entities. It strips the Palestinians of nation-hood with the language of disenfranchisement.
The above makes it clear: there is an ongoing campaign to completely erase Palestine, to ethnically cleanse Gaza and eventually the West Bank, and send them all to the empty Egyptian Sinai, as has been the long time, proven, and established plan.
And technically speaking, that would be a workable solution. Why? Because the Sinai is right next door to Palestine, is a vast, empty, unpopulated, and untapped territory with plenty of ‘growth potential’. Putting the Palestinians there would instantly solve every problem.
Why should they have to go there? Palestine is their land. They’ve been living on it for thousands of years. So, it’s unworkable.
Meanwhile, Egypt is said to be going all out to quash Israel’s plan:
I see a lot of outrage on the pro-Israeli side, calling out Egypt for its refusal to harbor Palestinian refugees as if it’s some kind of “dunk” on Arab nations who refuse to take in Palestinians. But if I were Egypt, I’d do the same thing. They know Israel’s plan is to push the Palestinians out onto them. It’s not so much about the fact that Egypt is unable or unwilling to “take care of” the Palestinians. It’s rather that Egypt knows Israel’s plan and that doing so would vastly strengthen Israel by establishing the full, complete Israeli state after destroying Gaza and the West Bank. So why should Egypt allow their geopolitical opponent, and dare I say enemy, to strengthen themselves in such a way?
In the end, the Palestinian don’t want to head south from north Gaza and have vocally expressed their intention to stay. Why? Because they fear the specter of another Nakba. What’s the Nakba, you say? It’s the Palestinian Trail of Tears:
On #WorldRefugeeDay, we reflect on the Nakba, which took place 75 years ago. During this event, pre-state Israeli militias forcibly displaced over 750,000 Palestinians from their ancestral homes on 15 May 1948. This marked the beginning of an ongoing process of apartheid and settler colonialism that persists to this day
And it most certainly is what Israel has plans for again.
But there’s another larger dimension to this, which MoA’s great new article touches on. It’s an eschatological one.
Some experts, like Alastair Crooke (ex-British intelligence) referenced above, believe that there is a growing tectonic rift within the Israeli authorities. Not only the aforementioned rift caused by mass dissent, both within government and society, against Netanyahu:
But a rift regarding Israel’s future. For instance, in his article, Crooke outlines how Netanyahu’s government’s supremacist vision revolves around connecting Israel to biblical destiny and prophecy—rebuilding the 3rd Temple, a process linked to the radical Temple Mount Movement.
In the intervening period, "Israel" has shattered into two equally weighted factions holding to two irreconcilable visions of "Israel’s" future; two mutually opposing readings of history and of what it means to be Jewish.
The fissure could not be more complete. Except it is. One faction, which holds a majority in parliament, is broadly Mizrahi -- a former underclass in Israeli society; and the other, largely well-to-do liberal Ashkenazi.
So, what has this to do with Al-Aqsa Flood? Well, the Right in Netanyahu’s government has two long-standing commitments. One is to rebuild the (Jewish) Temple on ‘Temple Mount’ (Haram al-Shariff).
Just to be clear, that would entail demolishing Al-Aqsa.
Recall that two days prior to the Hamas operation, literally named Al-Aqsa Flood, Israeli settlers stormed the Al-Aqsa mosque compound.
Crooke recounts how Sharon’s “provocative visit” to the mosque kicked off the First Intifada, the investigation of which Crooke took part in, as part of senator George Mitchell’s Presidential Committee. He states that the Temple Mount movement, which was small then, now has major representation even in the Knesset itself.
There are major biblical proportions to these events. Netanyahu is essentially trying to fulfill prophecy—once and for all creating the Land of Israel in its totality, as Crooke enumerates—which can only be done by fully cleansing it of Palestinians and entirely absorbing Gaza and the West Bank. The subsequent demolition of the Al-Aqsa mosque would fulfill the eschatological promise.
Dugin, too, entered the fray with his new article, dilating on exactly these thoughts:
And, of course, one must not overlook the eschatological dimension of events. The Palestinians named their operation ‘Storm of Al-Aqsa’, indicating increasing tensions around Jerusalem and the messianic (for Israel) prospects of erecting the Third Temple on the Temple Mount (which is impossible without demolishing the Al-Aqsa Mosque, an essential Islamic shrine). Palestinians aim to ignite the eschatological sensitivity of Muslims – both the Shiites, who are always more attuned to this, and the Sunnis (as they too are not unfamiliar with the themes of the end of the world and the final battle). For Muslims, Israel and Zionism represent the Dajjal [comparable to the Antichrist in Christian tradition].
We will soon see how seriously this is taken. But in any case, it is clear that anyone who ignores eschatology will not understand modern geopolitics. And not just in the Middle East, although it is most evident there.
He even invokes the infamous Black Swan:
Perhaps the bold attack on Israel by Hamas might be the black swan event that shifts the balance of power in the global game. Everything seems to be at a standstill, and this explosion relieves the tension. Fifty years after the Six-Day War. This is also part of the wars of Jehovah.
But why now? Why do events seem to be spiraling into such biblical end times territory all over the globe?
For Israel, the answer is simple: they are actually running out of time.
You see, the Arab world is becoming incommensurately stronger every day. Arabs are no longer the weak pawns of the 20th century, to be used at whim by the British Empire, which itself now lies smoldering.
The most important dimension to this is the fact that Israelis are being outbred. Their TFRs cannot compete not only with Palestinians, but with the Arab world at large. Palestinians themselves are now upwards of 5 million in population while Israel only has 9 and a half, only ~7M of which are Jews.
But the bigger issue are Israel’s top historical adversaries. Egypt, for instance, had ~20 something million people during the Arab-Israeli wars of the 60s era. It now sports 110M and is set to be over 200M by 2050-2070. In that same time, Israel is projected to only be 13-16M or so. Even Palestinians will vastly outnumber their Israeli occupiers by then. Furthermore, the U.S./UK/Atlanticist Empire which has been the linchpin holding Israel together is now weakening more than ever before, and Israel will not be able to count on their unflagging support in the future, particularly reading the tea leaves of NATO and EU slowly crumbling—neither of which will likely exist past 2030.
Now Egypt has officially joined the BRICS, its tenure set to start on January 1, 2024. Combine that with a growing Turkey, Palestine, and many other states. The fact is, within another decade or two, Israel will stand no chance at “defending itself”, or rather at illegally bombing all of its neighbors. A future Arab-Israeli war could hypothetically pit 300-500M people against a country of 12-15M.
But more specifically Palestinians themselves are simply out-breeding Israelis and would begin to pose a major problem to Israel’s expansionist plans.
This is why the conflict now has eschatological and biblical dimensions—because Israel sees the writing on the wall, their very future is in critical danger. Only by fulfilling prophecy now, establishing a strong state on the totality of the land, can they hope to thwart the natural tide rising against them.
But unfortunately, the numbers don’t lie, and in my opinion Israel is running out of time, and internal planners know they face future extinction in one form or another.
This was predicted by prophet Zhirinovsky, who—colorful and quirky as he was—commanded a deep realpolitik-rooted understanding of global events. Many of his previous prophecies came true down to the very year, particularly vis a vis Ukraine.
In this newly unearthed video from 2004, he predicted that Israel would be forced to seek a new homeland in Ukraine within 20 years, putting it at exactly the current era Ukrainian conflict, and all the hullabaloo around Ukraine as a ‘new Israel’:
Sure, he may sprinkle in some ‘kooky’ stuff, but recall Zhirinovsky’s Jewish heritage: his family are Holocaust survivors—the Eidelshteins; so I don’t think he can be accused of impropriety in commenting on the trajectories of his own kith.
The fact is, if the Western order falls—not necessarily in some cataclysmic, total collapse sense, but in the sense presently being adumbrated, that of U.S.’s vast weakening and loss of influence—if that happens, then Israel will be on its own with nothing to protect it. Sure they have the Samson option, but Iran is actually capable of creating nukes any time they see fit, they’ve only held off for political reasons. But if it ever came down to it, they could manufacture them likely in relatively short order, and have something to ‘answer’ Israel with should they resort to going down that path.
But let’s move on to the final leg of this journey. How would I personally “fix” this situation, and what are the actual prospects for the near term future?
To the first question, the only real workable solution that makes any logical sense is to institute the Two State Solution, which is something that’s already been on the UN docket and what every sane world power/leader has called for, including Russia recently. Palestine must be fully legitimized with all attendant rights and privileges.
But allow me to quickly answer why that will never be allowed to happen. It’s very simple: becoming a legitimate state means you are allowed to develop an official armed forces for that state. Recall that the reason Palestine is forced to use guerilla units dubbed “terrorist groups” simply for their hybrid style of fighting, is because Palestine is under illegal military occupation by Israel, and is not allowed to have its own armed forces. Were it to truly be a state, it would necessarily have to be able to develop its own indigenous, regimented military infrastructure. And given everything I just said about Palestinians vastly out-breeding the Israelis, why would Israel want a legitimate state with its own armed forces pressed right up against it, which will vastly outnumber the IDF in the not-so-distant future? In Israel’s eyes, that would mean the end of Israel.
So, of course that will never be allowed to happen.
There are other issues of course, like that of Jerusalem itself—Israel would never allow legitimization of Palestine as a state which would consequently have legal claims to Jerusalem.
Either way though, there is simply no other workable solution. You can’t ship Palestinians out because that’s their land. You can’t really ship Israelis out because it has now been their land for 70+ years as well, and I suppose there’s a sort of geopolitical statute of limitations on that sort of thing. Thus, the two state solution is the only morally, ethically, legally reasonable and justifiable thing to be done.
But will it happen? Probably not, because it would be the eventual end of Israel and they know it.
As for what will happen next? Iran has allegedly signaled that if Israel moves into Gaza, Iran will be forced to “act”:
Iran sent a message to Israel on Saturday stressing that it does not want further escalation in the Hamas-Israel war, but that it will have to intervene if the Israeli operation in Gaza continues, two diplomatic sources with knowledge of the situation told Axios.
What does “intervene” mean, exactly? No one knows, except that just today the Iranian foreign minister met with Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh in Qatar:
And there have been rumors of major Iranian proxy troops and shipments crossing over into Syria.
There are other rumors that deep divisions remain within the Israeli cabinet about whether to proceed into the Gaza bloodbath or not:
🇮🇱🇵🇸⚡️Israel's Channel 13 reports disagreements in the cabinet over the ground operation in Gaza...
It was previously reported that the ground operation would start this evening.
Bloomberg reports that the Biden administration fears Israel has no real plan and the conflict may spiral unpredictably. However, at the same time, MSM has guidance from above that there is to be absolutely no talk of Gaza “de-escalation” by any anchors:
In fact, Muslim anchors are being fired left and right for speaking out at all:
So the main possibility which remains is that Israel plunges into Gaza and Hezbollah/Iran are forced to react and enter the war, at which point major eschatological events could reshape the world forever. That’s because the second U.S. carrier group (USS Eisenhower) is heading to join the force build up. U.S.’s earlier grouping of the USS Gerald R. Ford is now said to be anchored a mere 50km from Israel’s shores.
This could quickly spiral into a hot shooting war between Hezbollah/Iran and U.S.
On the other hand, John Helmer outlines another possibility:
This is a hint that Erdogan and Putin are contemplating a Turkish ship convoy of aid to Gaza, protected from Israeli attack by the Russian Navy from its Tartous base on the Syrian coast, and by the Russian Air Force from Hmeimim. This humanitarian operation by sea would aim at breaking the blockade of the coast by the Israelis, and running the gauntlet of the USS Gerald Ford and its squadron further offshore. If this operation, a reminder of the Gaza Flotilla of 2010, is in planning now – the open signals are warning Washington and the US Navy to expect it – then the confrontation, and the risk to the US and Israel of strategic defeat at sea, are unprecedented.
He goes on to say that an Egyptian naval convoy could save the day, or throw a wrench into the works. Other analysts likewise believe that the BRICS could cement their regional dominance by preempting a large-scale Israeli assault with some sort of humanitarian convoy. As I said before, recall that Egypt and Saudi Arabia are now fully-fledged card-carrying BRICS members, and Turkey is on the aspirants list to join next. Not to mention that, apart from India, BRICS has shown solidarity with Palestine, as South Africa just declared their open support:
Russia is said to be drafting a seminal UNSC resolution for a ceasefire as well:
Its purpose is likely to expose U.S. villainy and hypocrisy on the world stage, since it’s almost a given that U.S. will be forced to Veto it.
As of this writing, the big Gaza invasion was set to begin after midnight October 15 Israeli time. However, breaking news states that Israel has now postponed it to “next week,” citing inclement weather which would interfere with their aerial reconnaissance, planes, and drones.
This sounds like a cop out, particularly because intrepid observers have posted the weather forecast which shows very clear, sunny, and ideal fighting weather all through the coming week. I believe Israel continues to have cold feet particularly given the rumors of internal conflict as to how to proceed. Perhaps they weren’t expecting such global outrage at the aerial massacres being committed by the Israeli airforce.
In the previously mentioned John Helmer article, he also quoted an Afghan war veteran with the following:
Late on Tuesday, US time, a NATO veteran of the Afghan war cast doubt on what the Israeli offensive will be able to achieve in Gaza.
“The Israelis don’t have the staying power to dig through, let alone occupy, Fort Gaza. Now, thanks to the bombing, they’ve turned it into a giant improved defence complex. It’s sure to be laced with tunnels and other underground workings well-stocked with food, water, medical supplies, weapons, ammunition, etc. We can bet those workings crisscross the border with Egypt. We can also bet that, no matter how nervous General Sisi [President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, right], there is certainly Egyptian support where it counts now.”
For their part, al-Qassam (the military wing of Hamas) released a video showing what awaits the IDF should they incur into Gaza:
And Seymour Hersh’s new piece apparently has more ‘insider sources’ telling him that IDF planners and commanders don’t trust their green conscript troops, and are worried about the assault.
They’re not the only ones that are worried—the rudderless and increasingly helpless EU technocrat villains are likewise running into each other, clueless as to how to align their messaging and who or what to support:
As per usual, they couldn’t care less about moral principles but rather how their messaging could be perceived, given the obvious nature of the horrific war crimes being committed by their partner in crime.
We’ll have to wait and see how the situation develops—but the powder is certainly being packed down into the keg, and only the tinder kindling ceremony remains.
Lastly, no MSM would dare post the official Hamas press conference giving their side of the story to the Al-Aqsa Flood operation, so for those interested in hearing both sides, here you go:
Most notably, they explain that al-Qassam fighters were instructed to not harm any civilians and that any claim to the contrary is Israeli propaganda.
There’s no telling how true that actually is. However it is true that many of the claims to the contrary were debunked, for instance the new “captured Hamas fighter” who confessed to “raping and killing” under duress:
We can’t know for sure, but it’s important to at least hear both sides, something that Western MSM is trying desperately to stop us all from doing, for obvious reasons.
In the end, the only thing that is certain is that war crimes from one side do not justify war crime reprisals from the other:
Moving briefly onto the Ukrainian conflict.
Pro-Ukraine observers continue to note that Russia has apparently launched an even broader series of offensives in a variety of directions. There are gains being made in Kupyansk, in Bakhmut (around Berkhov and elsewhere), in Avdeevka, in Novomikhailovka—south of Donetsk, and near Marinka—and even regaining territory in the Zaporozhye region.
In Kupyansk region, it’s even said Ukraine has abandoned Sinkovka and the town is now in a gray zone, though it’s not confirmed.
Major Ukrainian accounts are admitting they’re now on the defensive everywhere:
The post he’s commenting on above said the following:
The tweet you won't like. In about a month a decision will be made on whether to commit reserves to achieve a breakthrough. And after that (regardless of the outcome) we'll be on the defensive for almost a year. I'd guess somewhere until August 2024.
But the real pivotal fight all eyes are on is Avdeevka. Ukrainian accounts have been full of footage of Russian losses in the past two or three days. They claim that the offensive is becoming a disaster on par with Ugledar early this year. Huge numbers of losses are being thrown around, with hundreds of destroyed tanks, thousands killed, etc.
I’ve tried to analyze it very soberly and from a neutral standpoint, poring over every video. Most certainly the offensive is experiencing some moderate losses, however the Ukrainian videos are selectively edited and aren’t representative of any ‘disaster’. There’s a few old BMPs destroyed, a tiny handful of tanks, a dozen or two KIAs, all of which is nothing compared to a large scale assault comprised of thousands of troops. Much of the armor shown is quickly cut away from and in fact only damaged and recoverable, as was the case in Ugledar.
One Ukrainian account even absurdly admitted that in his count of the destroyed armor he included—I kid you not—“all stationary vehicles.” So if you happen to be caught putting your tank momentarily in park while your gunner works out a target, sorry but you’re now listed as “destroyed” on Oryx and elsewhere.
However, I will say that I believe this offensive will be extremely telling for the future of the SMO. In that, if it does result in a disaster, then that will be a very bearish signal for the remainder of the SMO. It will be confirmation that modern maneuver warfare, and advancing under the limitations of modern ISR is simply not workable, and it’s a nut that Russia itself simply cannot crack, just like the AFU wasn’t able to with their Zaporozhye offensive.
If this becomes the case, it will have negative connotations for the remainder of the SMO. Not that Russia will lose, but that it will be an even longer and bloodier affair than we could have ever hoped for.
That’s because we know AFU is offensively exhausted and will not have any more equipment to launch significant offensives, possibly ever again. Thus, if it’s proven Russia is offensively incapable of gaining ground also, then we’ll just be back in the World War 1 scenario. Two sides slaughtering each other with drones but unable to move forward.
We can’t say that’s the case just yet—there are some promising developments. I’ll outline both pros and cons:
Russian columns are not being decimated like Ukrainian ones in Zaporozhye, particularly not by drones. There appear to be some ATGM, artillery, and mine hits, as always, but many commentators have been surprised by how ineffective Ukrainian drones have been. This is a huge positive that means Russia is finding ways to nullify Ukrainian FPVs as they advance.
Manpower losses appear small as well. Despite some BMPs hit, in virtually every case you see the dismounts are fine and end up completing their mission of securing the treelines, etc.
But the ability to suppress hidden ATGM/artillery teams on the fly continues to be one of the chief Achilles heels. Another problem is that Ukraine has now sent major reinforcements there, including some very elite and experienced units.
Russian OPSEC is said to be particularly elevated on this offensive, so we’re getting almost no information from their side. That’s made it increasingly difficult to truly judge progress, particularly because the Russian side is not releasing much footage, including ‘positive’ footage showing defeats of AFU positions, etc. This is a sign they’re taking it very seriously but the tradeoff is it leads to negative perceptions of the offensive’s health when we don’t see constant footage showing ‘successes’.
One piece of footage was released however, and you can see the scale of the armored advances:
Here’s a drone view as well:
So what are the promising gains thus far?
Firstly a general zoomed out map:
The yellow in the north is exaggerated, but at least it gives a rough idea of the vectors.
And for those interested in the units involved:
Ukrainian correspondents state that the offensive has as many as 10 axes or vectors. The two most important are those coming from Krasnogorovka toward the slag heap in the north, and that of the direct south. Other vectors include Vodiane, also in the south, as well as Opytne, directly heading toward Avdeevka city itself, seen here:
The most important gains have occurred in the north. Russian forces took the slag heap pictured south, although today it was said they retreated slightly, making it a gray zone. This is a standard rope-a-dope where they capture a position, bait AFU into a counterattack, briefly retreat to bombard the AFU, and then regain it afterwards.
However, more important than that, is forces have crept up to the key railway line seen in red above, capturing one of the forest landings directly adjacent and perpendicular to that railway—seen as the red arrow next to the railway.
The red box to the west of the railway is a forested position right on the outskirts of Berdichi that some reports claim Russian forward units have embedded into. Unfortuantely there’s no real confirmation of this.
Myself personally, I have seen videos confirming the digging in of the forest plantation at the edge of the railway line (eastern side), but not further.
Here’s a quick re-orienting picture showing the area of interest:
But if you zoom into that area, you’ll note there is an all important road leading out of Avdeevka, which is the chief life line of the city. The yellow arrows below denote the road, while the red arrow shows the slag heap Russian forces have captured:
The slag heap is very high and gives fire control over the whole region. Some Russian observers have already salivated at the fact that this all-important road is now under fire-control in the same way that the famed Bakhmut “road of death” had become, leading up to the terminal phase of Bakhmut’s liberation.
The problem for the AFU is that Russian forces have now pushed up onto Severne’s outskirts from the south. Here is the same road marked with yellow arrows, but viewed from slightly further to the south:
Note that the area circled in red is where Russian forces have begun pushing into. And note that there is no other road other than the one above leading out of Avdeevka.
Why might this be disastrous for the AFU?
Recall that Rasputitsa is already starting and will soon kick into high gear. That means all those big open fields surrounding Avdeevka will be sludge. That road will be the only life line left to move heavy equipment and supplies in and out of.
On one hand, Avdeevka is heavily fortified with tunnels and fortifications that probably have massive amounts of supplies stockpiled, but that’s still never an optimistic proposition when you’re completely besieged.
The fact that Russia may already have that final road on fire-control means bad news for the AFU.
Recall how Severodonetsk-Lisichansk looked just before the AFU was forced to abandon it:
There was only one main road out, and the AFU got out of dodge long before Russia was able to even fully clamp it down.
That being said, the coming weather changes could prove problematic for Russia’s advances as well. But now there’s word that Wagner units are being moved to this front to help with the siege in the same way they slowly suffocated Soledar and Bakhmut.
But given the losses Russian forces are experiencing, it’s definitely not a sealed deal, which is why I gave the disclaimer up front that the outcome of this fight could have major repercussions on the remainder of the SMO. If Russia can solve the puzzle of this highly fortified city in a reasonable manner (i.e. reasonable losses and time spent), then that will be bullish for the SMO.
I will give it at least another couple weeks before judging. Recall that most major and semi-major urban agglomerates took minimum two months or more to capture. Lisichansk-Severodonetsk was about a month and a half, Mariupol 2-3 months, Bakhmut even much more than that. Avdeevka may be the smallest of them all, but it’s heavily fortified in an area that has had the longest fortification build ups of all. Thus I’d expect at least a couple months of operations at the minimum, and likely it can even take much longer. Analyst Yuri Podolyaka says he expects it to fall by New Years. All that matters is the losses trade off. If it takes a long time but the loss ratio is favorable to Russia then that’s fine.
In two more weeks or so, if Russia still hasn’t even crossed the railroad tracks toward Stepove/Berdychi, as an example, then it could signal a negative outlook and quagmire.
A few last disparate items.
Firstly, Ukraine continues spreading all sorts of fakes as usual about hitting Russian ships. One such fake said they hit Russia’s new Pavel Derzhavin, which was seen with black smoke coming out of it. However, this was debunked as a fueling up procedure the ship had undergone, and now the ship was seen sailing on its own power with no damage:
Russian (Project 22160) patrol ship "Pavel Derzhavin" on it's way to the port of Novorosijsk
Doesn't seem to have any visible damage and is sailing under it's own power
The brand new A-50U AWACS recently delivered to the Russian forces straight from the factory floor was seen for the first time in action:
Just further confirmation that Russia is beefing up that aerial ISR we talked so much about.
Croatian president Zoran Milanovic on Israel:
An interesting poll showing the distribution in support for Israel/Palestine amongst American voters:
As for overall American sympathies, the majority still supports Israel at 54% with pro-Palestinian sentiment climbing over the past few years:
Americans’ views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict have become more polarized as Democrats increasingly sympathize with the Palestinians while Republicans maintain their solid alignment with the Israelis.
Click the link to the Twitter thread if you want to see more break downs, by age group, etc.
Lastly, a brief message:
We all know the current events are extremely incendiary, with people more polarized than ever on the Israel-Palestine issue. As you know I’m big on free speech, but I ask everyone to be as kind, compassionate, or at least neutral, as possible in the comments section.
Don’t spew racism, whether it’s aimed at Jews or Palestinians or anyone else. Particularly given the fact that our primary coverage revolves around the Ukrainian conflict, where the Russian people are faced with hideous worldwide Russophobia in the form of actual dehumanized, pre-genocidal-language racism, it should behoove the pro-Russian side particularly to be mindful, as we don’t want it done onto us and so shouldn’t do it onto others.
In general, don’t attack other users. If you disagree with them and feel the burning urge, just drop it and move on, take a breather. Trust me, I’ve been there too. And you know dark forces out there are looking for any excuse to shut us all down—don’t give them a reason.
I don’t want to start having to go down the path of warning and blocking and all the rest. This isn’t because I view the Israeli issue as particularly sensitive, but rather because the issue itself has greatly inflamed the comments section. I’ve never gotten so many “comment reports” as I have with the last few articles.
As ‘B’ of MoA prescribes: Please stick to the topic. Contribute facts. Do not attack other commentators.
Hell, I don’t even care if you stick to the topic. And I don’t care if you contribute facts—just don’t attack others.
I’ll leave you with this final image of the MSM. Isn’t the Teddy Bear so “cute”?
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