For those who read the article via email, refresh the page as I added some important documents at the top, vis-a-vis the China meeting.

Expand full comment

🤔🤖🤔🤖 ... should we rerun our breakdown scripts or not ... 🤖🤔🤖🤔

Expand full comment

Not unless the AI is capable of reading JPEG documents 🤖😄

Expand full comment

Yes, "the AI is capable" -- we used OpenAI's newest "gpt-4o" model which has vision.

We planned to automatically extract transcripts from videos, a feature generously provided in your posts. However, this process is slow and somewhat costly to test. A good intermediate challenge to tackle is reading JPGs and integrating them into the overall text.

Expand full comment

The breakdowns post was updated using the text in the images -- their content can be viewed/traced in the themes table, the most provocative or important statements, and the mind-map.

Expand full comment
May 17·edited May 17

Simplicus, excellent article like usual. There are two things I would like some clarification on:

It would have been nice if there was an explanation of the potential significance of Xi's hug to Putin, and a brief discussion of other times Xi hugged another world leader and what it resulted in. It would be nice to have a brief explanation of the significance of this gesture, for those of us not very familiar with the intricacies of Chinese culture especially at the high level.

Furthermore, the statement of the Chinese/Russian side goes in direct contradiction to statements made by Xi in France regarding Russia/use of Chinese tech for exclusively peaceful purposes and the actions of Chinese banks to limit transactions with Russian currency in trade to avoid US sanctions- so much so that Russian trade with China fell for the first time since the start of the SMO. How does one reconcile the statements made by Putins delegation and the simultaneous actions of the Chinese?

In addition I find this statement to be contradictory:

"The targets hit mostly represent AD systems—which, once again, merely guard the already strategically irrelevant area"

Why guard an area that is strategically irrelevant? If it offers no strategic relevance it would not be guarded and have no/sparse defenses?

Expand full comment

It is rare for world leaders in *general* to hug anyone, particularly in an "official" manner, as opposed to some informal occasion, like a dinner or soiree. But for Chinese leaders in particular, it is virtually unheard of. President Modi of India has become famous for his "Modi Hug", being one of the only top presidents who hugs his presidential colleagues, and yet even he to my knowledge has never attempted to hug Xi or vice versa: https://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/no-hugs-but-warmth-evident-as-modi-xi-met-6-times-in-less-than-24-hours/story-1QnBXMP40MOaz9bY35imFL.html

As for the Xi/Macron dual-use, are you sure about that? https://waronfakes.com/common/fake-macron-claims-to-have-persuaded-chinese-president-xi-to-halt-weapons-and-dual-use-equipment-supplies/

I recall Macron/Von Der Leyen begging Xi to stop but not Xi promising them to do so.

Lastly, just because something is not of the most critical strategic importance doesn't mean it should be totally defenseless. It's still a base, after all. I didn't say the base isn't used--it's an active base which I explained is used for secondary surveillance purposes, etc. So of course it should still have some manner of defense, if there are active personnel there.

There are many places all around Russia that have S-300/400s stationed which are strategically irrelevant to the SMO. For instance, Russia has S-300s in Khabarovsk in eastern Siberia: if Ukraine was to strike that S-300, would that represent some kind of strategic "win" for them over Russia? Of course not, it would be a totally irrelevant strike and waste of time.

Expand full comment

I am not sure from where Scipio got his idea as Global Times numerous times wrote to effect that China-Russia relations are of the table for discussion with the west. They know well that they can’t succumb to a blackmail as it would only invite more demands and more blackmail.

Expand full comment
May 17Liked by Simplicius

Just to clarify, Modi is Prime Minister, not President. As much of an extreme attention seeker as he is, he wouldn't hug Xi (from unfriendly China) because of the border issues. Though he did have a photo-op sitting with Xi on a swing when Modi was relatively new in office. He might have hugged him then.

I have noticed Putin hugging some leaders..MBS and ex-Soviet bloc leaders if I remember correctly. I suppose Xi felt left out or was trying to accommodate his great friend's culture :)

Expand full comment

You forget Putin and George Bush - once upon a time they were great friends, I do not mean that cynically - read any of the print outs of their meetings

Expand full comment

Soviet/Russian leaders were usually friends with their US counterparts. Biden is actually an exception and Trump was 50:50 on that.

The reason for this is that US and Russian leaders are both sitting on enough nuclear arsenal to significantly fuk life on this planet and that brings an unique responsibility. And they only have one another because out of all humans on this planet, the other guy is the only person who understands that, what pressure it brings and how it affects the personal life etc etc.

So there is no other friend who would have at least a slight idea. And that includes former leaders, who were in their situation but in different circumstances - and for that reason they both have only one friend who can understand all of that.

Note: it has been suggested many times, that Biden is not in command of nukes in reality.

Expand full comment

Putin was 'friends' with Obama - I can not think of two people less alike, and of two Presidents less alike and less able to understand eachother or to communicate about anything

Your construct as to the binding force of large quantities of nuclear weapons is not convincing - in 2007 Putin and Bush were discussing nuclear proliferation - that went nowhere

It would not take more than one or two blasts to change the shape of the world - does not need thousands

Expand full comment

VVP danced w/ Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissel @ her wedding--not a state visit of course but a private one: down time

Expand full comment

A dance that may lead to the re-installation of the Austria-Hungary semi-empire )

Expand full comment

While I like Trump's domestic policies and plans for economic growth, his foreign policy is complete shit.


He sees the broadening of Russian-Chinese cooperation as a threat when, instead, he should be asking what he can do to provide something of value if FUSA petitioned to join BRICS.

Why the fuck can't we have leaders that will accept a multi-polar world order and replace wars of aggression with peaceful trade? I suppose God will allow us to collapse because we have allowed traitors, sociopaths, pedophiles, war criminals and satanists to take power in the Zio-Anglo-American sphere.

Expand full comment

'Why the fuck can't we'

Two reasons

1- you get the ruling class you ask for - not happy? do something about it

(clue do not treat them as insane, this is an excuse, and is playing their own language games, mental illness identity divide and rule) on the contrary they (Puritans, Cathos, Jews, a few blacks, a few Asian origins, some ex Indians) are very lucid and very united

2- you forget that your ruling class has done very very well out of the current order they have maintained for this purpose - you think they are so stupid they would trade/risk this success for something with which they are not familiar but which certainly would seem to offer them less

3 You are the losers in all this, not them - you want to take a risk, organise!

Expand full comment

"2- you forget that your ruling class has done very very well out of the current order they have maintained for this purpose - you think they are so stupid they would trade/risk this success for something with which they are not familiar but which certainly would seem to offer them less"

They won't be doing all that well when this country breaks apart and civil war breaks out that will be dozens of times worse than the Balkans or when we lose all prestige when we get defeated in the Middle East, South China Sea and Ukraine.

Not to mention the dollar is about to implode because of our fiat currency.

Expand full comment

Do not underestimate your enemy

Expand full comment

> the ruling class you ask for

You don't think that's an oxymoron?

Expand full comment


The ruling class is those who control the production government the wealth, the law and so on....

In what way do the rulers not rule?

If you want to test this - pick one out and take your hand to him or her - then write another comment

Expand full comment

No Gerrard, I'm saying: Who asks for a ruling class? There is no democratic aspect to this. I'm very elite-theory-pilled, don't worry, I'm just pointing out that I'm not sure who truly asks for these people.

Expand full comment

No one 'asks' like there's a menu with a benevolent Chef - society evolves into rulers and ruled, for one or the other or both with more or less success here and there, then and now

Given that now USEU is very good for ruling and very bad for ruled


Assuming that human life is not predestined or 'iron laws' of this or that - one supposes human agency to be source and driver of such relations

Result - the ruled get ruled as they wish or would be: same for the rulers : if the ruled wish for change they can only rely on themselves to provide this

Expand full comment

To answer your question, here's a very interesting and illuminating essay (with full citations) on how the ruling class functions EVERYWHERE in the world today, and examines the question of whether any ruling class in the world today is actually moral and good for humanity. In my view this is a must read for anyone on the planet seeking to understand what is happening in the world today. Without knowing this, we are literally walking in the dark and asking questions like the one you did above https://www.pdrboston.org/oppressors-need-bogeyman-enemies

Expand full comment

Trump likely never read a book. Ie, he knows nothing but what his warmongering appointees tell him. He's spent most of his life grifting and preening for the society pages. His is a vanity project on steroids. He's proof positive of the old adage that no one knows you're a moron until you open your mouth and prove it. Everything that emanates from his busy piehole is self-referential BS. TLDR: The Donald is me, me, me and ME! Bigly freaking sad.

Expand full comment

CORRECT. And so many in America are so desperate that they either completely fall for it or they are wilfully blind to it.

Expand full comment
deletedMay 17
Comment deleted
Expand full comment

Yessir - You ARE a funny guy - every time right on the button of discontent

Expand full comment

Down with this rotten ass warmongrell system of slavery imposed upon the world by the Arrogant West...just sayin

Expand full comment

LLM-derived breakdowns and summaries of this post by Simplicius The Thinker:


Expand full comment

'Overzealous junior officers' or 'crowds whipped up by outside agitators'? Take your pick. It's amusing to note that the 70s are making a comeback, albeit with better dress sense. ;O)

Expand full comment

Related breakdowns and summaries of the Russia-China joint media statement:


Expand full comment

Ties with China are irrelevant with respect to the SMO. Since Russia chooses to constrain itself within the bounds of an SMO, fighting will just drag on and on. Ukraine will always find just enough men, weapons, and ammunition to keep going forever, aided by its moral narcissist western allies, who will keep demonizing Russia, pushing the envelope in incremental steps, and doubling-down.

Exactly one year from now, nothing significant will have changed; you'll be reading more or less the same kind of situation reports you're seeing now. That's my prediction, do you have the cojones to state yours?

Expand full comment

My prediction is actually listed in the article which you obviously didn't read.

Expand full comment

I re-read the article. The only thing I could find that might qualify as a prediction is the following:

“I still maintain that the conflict has the highest chance to end by mid 2025 or so, but there is a chance it could go on well beyond that if certain things fall into place.”

With all due respect, that's not a concrete prediction for a fixed timeline, that's waffling. I have never stated that you don't do good, honest, detailed work, because you do. My contention is that (1) your context is flawed, and (2) in some instances, you try to have it both ways.

If somebody on Russia's side is getting it wrong, then all our futures are in jeopardy. Whatever, I'm pejoratively just one of those doomers, so you can safely ignore me.

Expand full comment

It's over when it's over. And at the moment it's not over. You need a clairvoyant not a blogger.

Expand full comment

Simplicius, how would you reply to the following articles, listing facts and numbers that hint to the fact that the Western military production apparatus has set to motion, and soon in about a year will have closed the gap with Russia in terms of firepower on the battlefield?

Within a year from now, AFU will be able to shoot the 5-6,000 artillery rounds Russia currently shoots daily. The materiel advantage will be gone without Russia having capitalized on it as Donbass is/will be still 40% Ukrainian. Plus, NATO could send boots on the ground and Ukrainians may then be able to perceive the shift of momentum, and therefore start flocking to the recruitment centres again.




Expand full comment

By the time production gets up to those levels there won't be enough of a Ukrainian army to make a difference.

Expand full comment

Those don't list facts, it's just wishful thinking.

Expand full comment
May 18·edited May 19

..as it is wishful thinking to project the current Russian material advantage onto the unbounded future.

Plus, the articles cite Western production plan projections as they were disclosed to "respectable" mainstream media, which the careful pro-Russian analyst should treat as facts.

Expand full comment

Respectable main shit media......🤣🤣🤣

You made my day clown!

Expand full comment

forgot to put 'respectable' in quotes

Expand full comment

the real problem with everything you writes is that

- it is all projections (or just totally made up BS)

- a lot of 'IF's have to go right for the 'west' to make it happen... which is extremely unlikely.

IF Biden administration is still here 'by late 2025'

IF there are no new flare-ups in other places between 'the west' and 'global majority' (that outnumbers 'the west 4:1 and outproduces 10:1).

IF there are no issues in the current conflict that divert resources (i.e. Gaza )

IF the puppet regimes in Euroreich would stay by late 2025

IF UA fascist regime in Kiev is able to continue to grab people off the street at ever and ever-increasing numbers (which is highly unlikely)


and as we know from math back in high school, when you start stringing together probabilities of these events that ALL have to go right for the 'west' , the combined likelihood of that is miniscule. Worse, the other side has direct input and control to all of the above and can flare up conflicts/divert resources at any time it desires...

Very, very, very unlikely to go right for NATO/EU/USA.

Now on to global majority

- already stated that have massive resource advantage, in population, and especially in production. they have little to no debt and real resources (vs electronic numbers in some computer that designate 'wealth').

- they know time is on their side (reduction of use of NATO currency in global trade)

- they are fighting in their backyard (with all of the advantages it entails)

- they now know that 'either with us or against us' USA (and its NATO puppets) forced them to protect their own interests in global majority. We are talking about trade war started by Biden just recently, EU 'over-capacity' BS , etc. BRICS knows that this is inevitable and knows that time is on its side..

and lastly, I am not sure where you are getting 5-6K rounds fired by RU a day. at time when it 'moves' (i.e. Bahmut fight), it was reported as firing 20K+ , daily. against reported production of 3 million a year at that time.

Expand full comment

he's a troll, ignore

Expand full comment


Expand full comment

I wouldn't put any faith in the Third World whatsoever... Israel has existed for 75 years to the impotent rage of half a billion Arabs

20,000 shells a day makes it 7,200,000 shells per year, which would be more than double the Russian annual production which you put at 3M.

If official state media in the West release optimistic shell production projection numbers, you have got to take them seriously, otherwise your aim is just to keep within an echo-chamber and delude yourself that things will stay the same and your foe doesn't have the ability to react to events (Russia is winning the artillery war) appropriately (even out shell production in favour of Ukraine within the closest time frame possible).

Expand full comment

i am lost of what your argument actually is to be honest...

- can we ('west') increase military capacity and increase significantly when push comes to shove? yes, sure. we have done it before and on more than one occasion. However, we have to significantly change (think re-industrialization) and all of the current useless resource has to be (forcefully?) re-assigned. think 'diversity consultants', 'inclusion specialists', 'this or what heritage advisory experts', etc - all of this is totally useless non-productive part of the workforce. Also, our 'services' and especially 'finance' sectors have to come to reality (meaning wipe out 80-90% of its work force that produce absolutely nothing, along with this 'AI wave'). Think Great Depression type of change, 30%+ unemployment, homeless shantytowns, mass starvation, massive social unrest, and very heavy handed (fascist) response from the government 'to better serve us'. Could it happen? yes. Have it happened before? yes. Would it happen again? your guess is as good as mine. I would not put money on us (USA in particular) navigating this quickly or correctly.

- will any of the above change the simple math that 'global majority' (ever expanding BRICS+++) outnumbers us at least 4:1 and outproduces us more than 10:1. Numbers dont care about fake GPDs when you look at who is producing energy, materials (steel, etc), actual things. and in war it would be things (ammo, combat helicopters, airplanes, subs) that matter not such quickly this of what clown in charge can create another trillion of fake monopoly money (if you cannot buy thing with it). RU production numbers are known, sustained, and are increasing (150+ tanks a month, what are we doing??). RU launched 34+ ships onto the water in 2023, what we are doing? and this is just Russia which is only a very small part of global majority, wait until China and India get into that game.

So no, pathetic little euro puppets in their euro-reich talking about winning the race against the world that is 10X larger than them is just that, pathetic. I want to see them solving basic economic problems while remaining to be socially stable first before I believe that single European can outproduce 10 Chinese..

Expand full comment

That's fine, you make a lot of sense. Your takes are quantitatively well supported by data, and I cannot find any fault in them. We agree on everything.

Your arguments are so cogent that the future must pan out exactly as you predict it is going to be.

Let's do one thing, shall we? Let us come back to this subthread in 6 months, or 1 year, and celebrate together the devolution of Europe to the Stone Age, and the rise of China as the City on the Hill!

Expand full comment

This kind of statement is the very opposite of the statements issued by VVP and XI Jingping in their re construction and re inforcing of the alliance and collaboration between the two countries

Instead of launching such narrow minded and aggressive pin pricks please read the essential points of overall China Russia collaboration, including the propositions for peace in this war

Expand full comment

Which part about the mismatch between the following timelines as well as between the tangible realities they refer to is evading your capabilities to understand?

1) Britain has supplied long-range cruise missiles and drones and has officially already lifted all restrictions on their use, i.e. Britain will soon be launching direct ALCM strikes towards core Russian territory. With others to follow soon, not that these restrictions ever meant much on anything else but the missiles -- dozens of Russian civilians were killed by Czech MRLS, and now French AASM Hammer bombs are flying towards Belgorod too, British Banshee drones are regularly sent over the official border too, etc. This is all happening already, with boots on the ground coming officially soon.

2) China and Russia will strengthen their cooperation and cooperation. Which will win the SMO when and how?

There is a gigantic and tragic discrepancy between the grand strategic intellectual masturbation that goes on in the "alternative" corners of the internet, and, even more tragically, apparently at the very highest level in Moscow and Beijing too, and the kinetic realities on the ground.

You are under direct and ever escalating attack. Fight back, FFS, or you will be destroyed.

Expand full comment
May 17·edited May 17

Wow -

Expand full comment

He does try hard!

Expand full comment

Try is the operative word here

Expand full comment

General Moron deserves a medal for never giving up with the stupidity, the doomin'n'gloomin', and the fantasies.

And the Kremlin needs to place him on a contract as an advisor.

Expand full comment

Russia needs to stop the attacks on civilians—a real morale-bleeder. And, as cynical as it sounds, this has to be done in an economical fashion—more resources for weapons or a general mobilization is not a win for Russia.

Expand full comment

Kiev's attacks on civilians in Russia are not a morale-bleeder. On the contrary, they have hardened the attitudes of ordinary Russians and have led to a profound increase in patriotism and determination. They lead to many more Russians volunteering to fight in Ukraine.

Expand full comment

Actually, that was exactly what strategic bombing campaigns have done through history, also. Hardened resolve in the targets.

Expand full comment

Very true. There's a first rate documentary on RT, a multipart series, about the Vietnam War, which I think may be titled "The American War", which is what the Vietnamese call it.

RT has truly excellent documentaries and this one, about the war seen through the eyes of the North Vietnamese, is outstanding. You can see how the people there indeed had their resolve hardened by the US bombing of their country.

Expand full comment

Eric is pissed off

Expand full comment
May 17·edited May 17

How come - did he get bit by a bumblebee or just one drink too many

Expand full comment

Forever is a word never used in war only ignorant people use it. When the causes and conditions for starting the war start to disappear thats when it will start to end . The ball is in eu court and they will make a mess of the things as they have made a dogs breakfast of europe. My prediction is 24months at most.

Expand full comment

"Ukraine will always find just enough men, weapons, and ammunition to keep going forever"

Nonsense. They're clearly falling apart, finding it much harder to conscript, equip, and train the very, very large numbers of troops they will need to have even the slightest chance to "keep going forever."

The interesting thing about Russia's advance in Kharkov is how very few Russian troops were involved yet Kiev and the West felt in mortal peril. It was just a probing attack with a few thousand troops and surprisingly little armor. Russia can launch such attacks all along the very long border of Russia with Ukraine, including both "classic" Russia and the New Territories, and probably even launch a few such probing attacks from Belarus.

Each such attack, especially those nearer to Kiev, will demand panicked repositioning of what few response forces Kiev has left. Desperate repositioning under fire is far more lethal for troops than fighting from static defensive positions. Russia can use such probing attacks to cut Kiev's forces to pieces, all while continuing to strike at logistics infrastructure deep in Kiev's rear.

The cumulative effects of all that do not allow Kiev to keep on going "forever." Things will continue to get worse, and the territory held by Kiev will continue to shrink.

Could the conflict go on well beyond 2025 if certain things fall into place? Sure, but not in the current form of the conflict. The territory held by the Banderist junta could collapse into a very small region around Lvov, or even Kiev. But the junta will be neutered as a fighting force, relegated to holding out in an island of territory with no coastline, perhaps just an adjunct territory adjacent to Poland, while Russia consolidates a hold over 80+% of Ukraine, rebuilding the regions and integrating them into Russia as new territories.

The real threat to all our futures is not if Russia's side is getting it wrong, but if the psychotic West continues to believe its own delusions. In that case, we could suddenly see a profoundly violent inflection point as US/NATO escalation results in a very rapidly expanding war that involves massive destruction in Europe and in US bases around the world.

Expand full comment
May 17·edited May 17

S, thanks for making clear quite how important this VVP visit to China is -

There's room I think for a comment on the peace plan - both sides have renewed emphasis on this, although it is clear that Xi is much more insistent and that VVP is still somewhat reluctant

But what are friends for?

Expand full comment
May 17·edited May 17

I think Putin is both being polite to Xi and trolling the West. Xi's plan might be a reasonable starting position for the West and worthy of negotiations (as Putin has indicated out of respect for Xi) but would be unworkable from a Russian perspective. As for the West, he is merely daring the West to take up Xi's position, knowing that to do so would be perceived as weakness by the West and would never be acceptable.

At this point Russia is looking for only one position - unconditional surrender to Russian forces.

Expand full comment

Thank you for this - I agree with you, and that VVP is reluctant, and believes that some kind of 'total victory' (military) is necessary

However - the nature of the China Russia collaboration, increasingly close and increasingly intertwined and the often repeated vision of equality in a multipolar world pull VVP in the other direction - there is much more at stake than military victory in Ukraine

An anywhere near overall/durable China (ChinaRussia) peace plan would be a major victory and a major defeat for the US, especially if it was to be accompanied by a reconstruction in Europe plan

China has done this before, the Iran-SA, which was irrefutable by the US, even tho' they are trying to undo it

But I agree with you, VVP is not yet in agreement - very hard to do when in the grips of massive reconstruction of Russia largely inspired or accelerated precisely by this war

Expand full comment

Yes, and if I remember correctly, Xi's plan also included what amounts to Putin's "indivisibility of security in Europe" he put forward in Dec 2021", so if this were agreed, I don't think Putin would have much problem with it.

Expand full comment



2. Abandoning the Cold War mentality. The security of a country should not be pursued at the expense of others. The security of a region should not be achieved by strengthening or expanding military blocs. The legitimate security interests and concerns of all countries must be taken seriously and addressed properly. There is no simple solution to a complex issue. All parties should, following the vision of common, comprehensive, cooperative and sustainable security and bearing in mind the long-term peace and stability of the world, help forge a balanced, effective and sustainable European security architecture. All parties should oppose the pursuit of one’s own security at the cost of others’ security, prevent bloc confrontation, and work together for peace and stability on the Eurasian Continent.

Please note no mention of the US - peace in Europe certainly serves China, and is in RF's interests too, much harder for VVP to play upon than it is for Xi

Expand full comment

They can only talk about peace. Peace depends on the West, not Xi or Putin. Putin hasn't really been reluctant. He has repeatedly said they're ready if someone is willing to consider it seriously on serious and realistic terms. But everyone knows what the other side is doing.

Expand full comment

I agree that peace agreements are tough - but I do not see that in this case depends on the West

In any case VVP knows that any agreements with the US are worse than worthless, are indeed a trap

The Iran-SA did not depend on the west, and US interests are very much more crucial in this area than in Ukraine

Expand full comment

In a war against West, peace needs either total victory or the West needs to be ready for honest negotiation. Of course, West is untrustworthy and agreement-incapable, but is total victory even possible without an all out war?

I believe this war needs to drag out to weaken the West to the point where they are the ones asking for peace...something they hoped to do to Russia. That's why economic war is more important and China has a big role there. Although I'm not sure China is doing its part enough. They're more like bystanders reaping the benefits of fighting cats.

About SA-Iran, US was not a direct party to their proxy war in Yemen which SA wanted to end but US was not letting it happen. Iraq had been helping Iran and SA negotiate (Qasim Suleimani assassination was linked to this), Russia was working indirectly and China got involved at the end. This happened after Biden came to power and antagonised MBS, because the two parties wanted it. It may not last long though as US is again wooing MBS but in this war, Ukraine is hardly a player and under complete control of West. Unless West is ready, there's no peace. I think more fronts will open against Russia before that happens.

Expand full comment

The 'West' is no longer a viable statement or shorthand

Precisely - Europe's interests are in reality very different from the US, and US interests and actions have been very hostile to Europe, have done more damage to Europe than to the RF

One day, possibly, the EU ruling class will begin to understand this

As for continuing the war NATO is near exhaustion, and for all the talk, the EU individual countries are incapable of anything much more than terrorist attacks

'Opening up other fronts' ? You mean Georgia? That's been there done that desperation

What about the Mediterranean front RF has opened up - one day soon the souther Europeans are going to wake up as to the very significant threat pôsed by RFAlgeria control of lots of energy, lots of migrants, lots of nuclear subs, major surveillance etc

Libya was their mistake, thrown into it by the fake African Obama - now coming back to bite them

As for asking for peace, the EU already is, refusing to confiscate the CBR assets

As has been pointed out the China peace plan is a European security peace plan - let's see if the war mongerers survive the EParliament elections

Expand full comment

True. EU needs to be liberated from US-UK, not by Russia but by their own new leaders. Russia is trying to consolidate its position in Africa and West Asia through Iran. Caucuses are still a problem even if Georgia is trying to not get used by US. There's also Armenia and I don't trust Turkey one bit.

Expand full comment

We here in the US need liberated from our own leaders. It may be coming sooner rather than later.

Expand full comment

Which goes back to this section: "" However his appointment indicates that the Russian government is looking far beyond the current hostilities, and expects a period of 10 to 20 years of "cold" confrontation with NATO countries"

The US wants its hegemony status to continue and its various satellites want their share of that pie, as subordinates that can mean crumbs. The west is not agreement capable and will continue to escalation cycle in spite of the casino economy far from transformation, but expect supply chain ruptures with China sanctions incoming.

The US will likely rope its satellites into some neoliberal/feudal garrison economy; in other world a split world of multipolar sovereigns vs US bloc.

Barring total western financial collapse - TINA.

Expand full comment
May 17Liked by Simplicius

Premier Xi's dragonbear hug w/ VVP is more stately & reassuring than Biden's w/ Bibi

Thank you, Simplicius, for collating & compiling this info

Expand full comment

It should be telling what Russia decides to invest in domestically vs get from China. My gut says they'll continue to rely heavily on China for computer hardware while focusing on innovating the actual drone and things like that. However, Russia's reliance on Chinese computer hardware might be what they are looking to derisk from. Advanced compute chip production might just be Russia's biggest security weakness.

Expand full comment

Americans buy everything from temu or aliexpress, and so does walmart amazon

Expand full comment

I put together a few translated transcripts and a Ria Novosti recap article as my two latest efforts, this one being the most in-depth, https://karlof1.substack.com/p/xi-and-putin-address-the-media

Putin's speech at Harbin tomorrow will be a highlight. Meanwhile, the SMO managers are doing well.

Expand full comment
May 17·edited May 17

>Building a new world order

How exactly is that world order going to be different from the current one when the Russian delegation has Deripaska, Gref, Sechin, Mikhelson, etc. in it, i.e. the key representatives of the Russian oligarchy?

Or we are to believe that Russian predatory oligarchic capitalism is going to be oh-so-much better than the Anglo-Saxon version? Yeah, sure...

If you want a different world order, you reopen the GULAG camps and throw everyone with wealth above a certain (not very high) threshold there, nationalize most industries, and go back to the USSR. Then you will have a different and better world. Otherwise it's all a fight between mafia families for control over turf.

Most importantly, start fighting the war for real, FFS.

Because while the big shots are having a good time in Beijing, Ukraine just launched hundreds of drones at Russian cities, from Crimea to Novorossiysk. As usual, the early reports are all about how the attacks were "successfully repelled", but it is highly doubtful given past experience. Power certainly went out in Crimea (substation was hit) and in Novorossiysk (not clear what exactly). There is no air defense in the world that can cope with such saturation attacks indefinitely. What is production rate of interceptors? Highly doubtful it is hundreds a day.

This after the ATACMS took out multiple MiG-31s the previous two nights -- irreplaceable losses with strategic significance.

But given the trajectory of these attacks over recent months, it is only going to get worse from here.

In fact, I don't remember Russia ever sending such a massive salvo of drones toward Ukraine. Ukraine effectively now has superiority in long-range strike drone numbers. How did we get to that situation?

We got to it by Putin and co. thinking primarily about empty nonsense such as "multipolarity" and the "new world order" while continuing to kowtow to big business interests inside Russia and not paying attention to the existential task at hand, which is decisively and quickly winning the war before the West enters it directly.

What does life look like for the foreseeable future for ordinary Russians practically everywhere west of the Urals, but especially along the Black Sea coast and Belgorod, Kursk, Bryansk, Voronezh, Lipetsk, etc. given where things stand now? Daily terror shelling, while the Kremlin continues to sell out for cheap the national treasures to the new dear friends, just as it was selling them out to the previous dear partners (and still continues to do so even while the dear partners are launching ballistic missiles towards Russia), the oligarchs fill their pockets, people die every day, but nobody gives a damn enough to do what has to be done to stop it.

Remember what Putin said at the Valdai forum last year? Someone dared to ask him "why do we keep selling oil, gas and other natural resources to our enemies? Isn't that suicidal idiocy?" (that last sentence wasn't in the question, but that was the spirit). What did the almighty infallible genius reply? "But we get money for those resources". What more is there to say...

Historically great master statesmanship right there...

At least back in the days the last train with goods left west for Germany on the evening of June 21st 1941. Not after that...

Expand full comment

The phase now is ukraine has effectively lost and has only scorched earth policy kill a few civilians ,a few planes and oil tanks which have no effect on the war NONE AT ALL . The war is fought at the gates of Troy 1000km long and it make take 6-12-18 months but it wont take 24months thats how i see it going because the west will have massive economical problems coming its way. I know because the best of the best of the west …Australia is also economically in economic misery snd it is 2 steps above us uk and eu

Expand full comment

Australia is a US satellite state. The Gillard govt signed an agreement with China for RMB/AUD trade - result an Obama visit and US marines in Darwin. It's been downhill since then. The Albo/Wong combo is intellectually and morally weak; even if Albo kicked the intel people off cabinet meetings. The Senate inquiry into banking will be a big tell, but frankly in spite of citizen lobbying expect the govt to fold when the housing ponzi teeters on implosion.

Expand full comment

> >Building a new world order

> How exactly is that world order going to be different from the current one when the Russian delegation has Deripaska, Gref, Sechin, Mikhelson, etc. in it, i.e. the key representatives of the Russian oligarchy?

> Or we are to believe that Russian predatory oligarchic capitalism is going to be oh-so-much better than the Anglo-Saxon version? Yeah, sure...

A most excellent point!


We should still kick the American Hegemony to the curb and burn it down. Just because the "new" is likely to end up similarly evil as the "old", it doesn't give any right to the "old" to continue being evil.

Expand full comment

"How exactly is that world order going to be different from the current one when the Russian delegation has Deripaska, Gref, Sechin, Mikhelson, etc. in it, i.e. the key representatives of the Russian oligarchy?" - these people are exactly the same guys who had a lot of money in the west and were forced to bring money home. While they are sitting on their money in an overheating economy, it would be wiser to invest it somewhere, but in Russia it's problematic because of the risk of overheating economy. There's more than $1T of money sitting in Russia not being invested (because of lack of readily prepared projects and because it only powers inflation in an overheating economy). It makes a lot of sense to bring these people with you, so they can come up with something to throw this money into.

There is so much unspent money in Russia, the economy has to be artificially slowed down despite of super-duper high interest rates (western economists can't even grasp the idea how this could be possible). For example, all the rupees India pays for Russian oil (which it exports to Europe) are dumped back into India as investments into infrastructure and industries. Because Russia is unable to spend all this money (another factor is that rupee is almost impossible to convert).

Expand full comment

1T dollars, or 1T roubles??

Even the second is a lot of money, but Lordy, if they can't figure out how to invest it already, they aren't as smart as they've shown themselves to be so far...

Just off the top of my head, Russia absolutely NEEDS a SpaceX analogue (yet to see any signs of RosCosmos being "cleaned up" like the Military) launching their own Starlink equivalent (A lot of Ukraines "edge" in drone use is founded on Starlink access).

Second, aiming for top 25 in robot use (as per the recent plan) is woeful. They need to aim to be second, to China. Something like the Geran is an *ideal* target for a near fully robotic production line (or several, in total war, redundancy is your friend) and Russia needs to free up manpower from simple war materiel production tasks, and put them to more economically friendly tasks.

But I'm sure Russia has thought of this, more than I.

Expand full comment

"Russia absolutely NEEDS a SpaceX analogue" - why would Russia need a fake "private" front for a government-funded/backed Roscosmos spin-off, with a fraudster billionaire as its head?

Roscosmos has just had its 124th successful launch in a row, if you aren't aware, just a few weeks ago launched the new heavy Angara-A5 rocket, is actively preparing for the superheavy launches from the new Vostochnyi cosmodrome, is constantly launching new surveillance and comms satellites (both military and civilian) and has already launched test satellites of the Russian analogue of Starlink (Sfera).

what is there to be "cleaned up", exactly?

Expand full comment

"Roscosmos has just had its 124th successful launch in a row".. How many years did that take?

The Falcon 9 has that in 18 months..

Angara-A5 rocket.. another disposable rocket in a world where reuse is the way to go, and how many years late?

There has ALWAYS been great reward in being a "fast follower" in any industry and regardless of Musk, SpaceX has shown where the Space Launch industry MUST GO, and Roscosmos just rehashes the same old same old, much like ULA in America. And much like ULA, survives on government largess.

I've said before, Roscosmos has the talent (Russia had the FIRST FFSC rocket engine for fuck's sake, now SpaceX has the best..) but the leadership and drive is not there.

Time to clean house.

Expand full comment

"SpaceX has shown where the Space Launch industry MUST GO" - SpaceX is just a well paid government contractor (received a lot of money from NASA than entire Roscosmos budget), get huge part of the mission being run by NASA (tracking, comms, ground infrastructure, emergency assets, debris tracking and avoidance, governance and aaaaaaall of the rest of stuff) and huge number of investors laundering printed money.

Roscosmos is undergoing a huge slow reform, which includes a lot of supporting scientific institutions (contrary to popular belief, Russians are developing a hell of a lot of new stuff), is the only space agency capable of running by far the humanity's biggest off-world outpost (nobody except Roscosmos can independently supply and maintain the ISS and nobody has currently the capability to reliably control its orbit, integrate new modules or run regular automatic resupply).

Also, until very recently, Roscosmos has been running THE ENTIRETY of human manned space program and has built and ran ALL human space stations in the galaxy between 1979 and 2021.

Roscosmos has also trained ALL humans who left Earth's atmosphere in this century (yes, that includes astronauts and taikonauts), has been running a huge space tracking and comms infrastructure and has been the only space agency keeping dedicated capability to support both sea and land spacecraft recoveries.

All of that for a fraction of SpaceX's money. Under sanctions from its own "partners".

When this institution finally gets reformed, restaffed and finishes current development projects, Elon Musk will suddenly look exactly like what he is - a scammer. Despite saying that, Musk is a step forward for americans. Not because he is miraculously good, but because the rest of the system is that much rotten. At least the Russians have understood that something similar was ongoing in Roscosmos too and they're doing something about it.

Expand full comment

There is a clear dollar sign in front of 1T.

"if they can't figure out how to invest it already" - they can. But it takes time and people. Russia is not running on overinflated financialized economy, so throwing the money US-style at some problem is not they way to go. They focus on real projects like infrastructure - they do have a lot of them ongoing, but you can hear for example municipalities complaining about suddenly having a lot of money and no plan what to do with them. Simply because they didn't expect to suddenly have money and nothing was prepared. They are getting there slowly, but they're clearly behind the curve because the money arrived quite suddenly and unexpectedly. But still - it's not a bad situation, because suddenly investing big into all of those projects would lead to an inflation spiral. If you want to invest massively into infrastructure, first you have to invest into material producing industries, otherwise you end up scalping the entire market at home and abroad, making it all cost a lot more. The same as with what they're doing in war - they do not commit to more action than what their backend (production, recruitment etc) can support.

"launching their own Starlink equivalent" - there is the Sfera project, which is somewhat an equivalent of Starlink, but has more uses

"aiming for top 25 in robot use (as per the recent plan) is woeful" - depends on how you look at it. Russia is the only country with all sectors of economy possible being present in a big way. Not all of them are viable for big automation. That's why their "robotization" might seem a bit stagnant.

Also, you don't necessarily want to automate your military industrial complex in a big way - exactly because of total war. One hit to a single robot could ruin the entire country. It's fine to build fully robotized weapons factories, but you still want to have something you can produce with lower tech requirements and just as effective.

Expand full comment

The current visit by VVP to China has focused attention on the usual concerns, security, multipolarity, economic ties

Putin brought a very full team

But has, notably, brought in focus renewed peace intitiatives for the Ukraine war, which Xi Jinping has been steadfastly promoting since he first published his proposals in Fenuary 2023

At that time the westies, as usual were taken by surprise, and were dismissive, VVP was notably tepid in his reception

Xi Jinping did not give up, and assigned a senior diplomat to shuttle diplomacy, Li Hui, who has been tireless – his latest round took place earlier this month, to the usual western contempt



Now VVP has placed, in an interview with Xinhua, a great deal more emphasis on this peace intitiative, although one might observe his enthusiasm is tempered by an awareness of the complexity of the task

Still – China is the only country with the will the patience and the influence to bend all parties towards peace

The Iran-SA peace agreements were achieved under similar difficultes, to the astonishment of the ignorant west

Expand full comment


May 16, 2024 The First Day Press Statements VVP and XJ



Xi – The Five Principles of co operation China – Russia

May 16, 2024 Ria Novosti First day summary



May 17, 2024 Editorial and Summary of Events from the Global Times-

Stable development of China-Russia ties beneficial to world peace, prosperity


This newspaper carries a slew of other articles on China Russia

Febuary 24, 2023 China position paper


"China's Position on the Political Settlement of the Ukraine Crisis"

April 16, 2024 : Xi puts forth four principles to solve Ukraine crisis’



Addressed to Scholz

Western Press on Current Visit VVP to China







The FT, NYT, WSJ and Wapo all publish hair on fire scare stories about Russia’s dependence on China, their different priorities, and a seperating of the ways between the two, but…but Russia will invade Taiwan

15 May 2024 Xinhua interview with VVP




Politico seems better to understand the significance of the statements made by Putin in his interview with Xinhua, their report is deadpan but not dismissive

As are the feeble FTs, or the Guardian which in a brief report does not mention any peace plan, more space is given to a woman trying to start her car outside Kharkov, having trouble, and blaming Putin for selling her low quality fuel products

Please note in the friendship between Xi Jinping and VVP echoes of that between GWB and VVP early in the century : O tempora o mores

Expand full comment

Iran-SA peace negotiations were going on for years through Iraq and even Russia. China was brought in at the end to be the one to oversee its culmination as China is projected to be the next leader.

Expand full comment

Thanks for this reminder that all peace agreements take time and other willing participants

Expand full comment
May 17Liked by Simplicius

Awesome Comprehensive Post (yes, positive 'breathtaking' inter-country developments).

Minor note: Body posture, Mr. Belousov's is Excellent (reinforced @ home, as I 'was' supposed too attend West Point, My father an O6 Army Infantry Officer).

Expand full comment

I noticed his posture, too, and the careful pecking order at the meeting table—and the attendees’ distance from Putin.

Expand full comment

Now we will see the West’s disinformation cabal shift to highest gear

Expand full comment

Beautiful write-up. And you hit a salient point that I belabor. That no one wants to hear.

IF. IF. If Ukraine ever pulls their head out of their ass and retreats behind the Dnieper? It won't be 2024. It won't be 2025. It could take years. You have a water barrier. Shorter lines. Shorter supply lines. Concentrated forces.

Which is why Putin is preparing for a long game.

AND. Putin does not want this over now. The West wanted to bleed Russia and provoke regime change. Well, hello motherfuckers. The shoe is on the other foot.

Putin is going to slow grind this debacle up the USA's and NATO's and the EU's ass for years. PUTIN is going to effect regime change in the West. While he bleeds their armories dry and destroys their economies.

Russia has ZERO interest in a "quick" win.

And the China angle? Xi is loving this. Putin is draining the West while giving China time to absorb the Ukraine lessons and correct their horribly corrupt military. WIN. WIN. WIN.

Expand full comment

Exactly - there's the RoW re construction collaboration to be done

All the hurry up crowd take the gloves off are USniks trying to provoke mistakes, or at least uncertainty among those who might be sympathetic to the RF, and China, and RoW

Expand full comment
May 17·edited May 17

>Which is why Putin is preparing for a long game.

>Russia has ZERO interest in a "quick" win.

Putin has about six months to get to Uzhgorod before either of these two becomes unavoidable:


2) Russia will have to fold because the Russian elites don't have the stomach for WWIII.

If Putin is preparing for the "long game", he has doomed the world.

And if he has zero interest in a quick win, he is an even bigger idiot than the last quarter century has shown him to be (it was under his rule that Ukraine was lost to begin with, never forget).

Expand full comment

Will see you here in 6 months, you can apologize for your errors then.

Expand full comment

If anyone dooms the world it would be the west as they rejected Minsk Agreements and instead violently lash out against all the world to defend their hegemony.

Russia and China prepare for Cold War II with the west while global south prepares to claim their full independence from American grip.

Expand full comment

Did the cold war 1 ever really end ?

Expand full comment

Was Russia in any position to effectively deal with Ukraine much earlier than 2022?

Expand full comment

No. Even 2022 was a tad early.

Expand full comment

2022 was a rad early for Ukraine too.

One of the reasons why people believed that "Russia won't invade Ukraine" was an obvious realization that Ukraine was not prepared for such a conflict (yet) and therefore would stand down in Donbass eventually, as it did in 2021.

The problem was, that Ukraine believed Russia will do nothing for some reason.

Expand full comment

It would have been much easier in 2014. Putin himself acknowledges it now.

But the roots of the problem are much deeper, the Kremlin outright facilitated the Banderization of Ukraine in the early 00s. Forget about combatting it, the pro-Russian forces in Ukraine were bitterly complaining about receiving absolutely zero help from the Kremlin. Just absolutely no attempt to even ty to exercise soft power.

Meanwhile Banderites were taking over with no resistance.

You should also ask yourself what is that Russia could have done to prevent the Maidan in the first place. They still had a lot of people in important positions back then.

The very words "dealing with Ukraine in 2022" reveal a lack of understanding of the history here. 2022 Ukraine was not 2014 Ukraine, which was not 2009 Ukraine, which was not 2004 Ukraine, etc. And 2024 Ukraine isn't 2022 Ukraine either...

Expand full comment

Yawn! The doomin' is nearing critical levels.

Expand full comment

Hindsight is 20/20. Coulda shoulda woulda - even now, between these discussions of China and Russia they place great value in being non interventionist ito how other countries run their affairs. So no, there was no reason to cross Ukraine's border before 24Feb 2024.

Then your other comment about WWW III in 6 months, neither the First or the Second World Wars got announced - they were identified as such afterwards. So there is no telling whether we are already there.

Expand full comment

When Darwin came back from his many years of travelling the world he remarked that all of his fears and worries about his future adventure had proved groundless and nothing he had anticipated might happen had happened and that his fondest memory was that of the arid plains of Patagonia. Such is life, now, then and ,no doubt, in the future.

Expand full comment
May 17·edited May 17

Is that your prediction? Russia folds in 6th months or so to a NATO onslaught or the oligarchs abandoning Putin? Noted.

I like predictions because they kind of put money where one's mouth is. Accurately predicting complicated future events is a good indicator of the prognosticators skill.

In 6th months (or so) I don't see Russia folding.

Expand full comment

In 6 months, american dollar breaks permanently

Expand full comment

We've been hearing that one for how many decades now?

Expand full comment

How many countries were abandoning the dollar over those decades? How much national debt did the US have over those decades? How much more powerful than it is now was the US compared to its main rivals? You clearly aren't looking at today's facts

Expand full comment

Trade in dollars is about the same percentage as it always has been. What trade has shifted out of dollars has mostly shifted to Euros.

And we've been hearing the stories about debt destroying dollar hegemony for decades now.

Expand full comment

It's not a zero sum game. De-dollarisation is a process - it's not that the $USD disappears (it won't), it's more that over time its use will decrease - eg counterparties start to replace the $USD in contracts, purchases, etc. - and its value will deteriorate.

Consider a Roman Emperor turning up in 2024. He would of course expect to be able to make all purchases and spending, and conduct all business, in Roman 'aureus'. Imagine his shock at being told that the mighty Roman currency & coins no longer existed, and that it had gradually been replaced by other currencies, or morphed into new ones.

Dedollarisation is intensifying and accelerating, but has a long way to go. However, the threat is that it's decline can accelerate much faster than (say) Roman currency did. The greenback is in a surprisingly vulnerable position. For example, if the Saudis to open up oil trades to other currencies than the $, a major foundation of the $USD immediately collapses. A new BRICS currency, or unit of exchange, is another major threat. Any major sell off of US Treasuries, for example by China, would cause havoc for the $USD. And let's not forget the possibility of a US Fed government default, let alone the ongoing major headwinds facing the US economy.

All in all it's not looking great for the $USD.

Expand full comment

"(it was under his rule that Ukraine was lost to begin with, never forget)"

More fake history.

Expand full comment

What is fake about it?

The Orange revolution and then the Maidan happened when?

Also, it was Medvedev who went in militarily in Georgia in 2008, not Putin. Putin may well not have....

Expand full comment

The great moron is wrong again. The maidan happend well before the orange revolution.

Expand full comment

The orange revolution started 2004

When did maidan take place?

Expand full comment

The CockWomble raises his ugly head and bloviates again.

WW3? You need to stop playing with yourself, it's not a nuclear missile in your hands...

The "Russian elite" had their teeth kicked in when the West froze their money and confiscated their yachts. They, and the Russian people, have ZERO fucks to give when it comes to killing NATO proxies, or NATO troops, or whatever pitiful presence the West has the tiny balls to put in Ukraine. THEY are in this for the long haul now, too.

Expand full comment

To say Putin is an idiot because of his last 25 years, says to me you have no knowledge of Russia today as compared to Russia of 25 years. He has achieved more positives for Russia over that period than all Western leaders put together. On your point about allowing Ukraine to become what it was. Haven't you stopped to think if Russia was in any position over that period. To stop the full Western backing of Ukraine to confront Russia? You clearly haven't looked deep enough into the situation. Putin had just started getting Russia back on its feet & the 2008 banking crisis & financial crash happened. Where as the US just printed & still does ridiculous amounts of money. Gaining impossible national debt levels to get itself out of a big. Just delaying an even bigger disaster. Russia doesn't have a national debt worth talking about. Have you considered facts like these? This has lead Russia to be able to survive the record amount of sanctions placed on anyone in history. To not only survive them but to totally out pace all the Western economies. You can't win an argument against another country if you don't have a decent economy never mind a conflict. We have Russia facing over 40 countries apparently the most wealthy countries. How's that going for the wealthy countries? They've created the biggest money pit in history. They've totally destroyed their weapons stocks & more importantly their economies are in a right mess. Not bad for an idiot I would say. If Putin is an idiot in your opinion, I'd love to know what your opinion is of Biden, Sunak, Macron, Trudeau, Scholtz & Von De Leyen.

Expand full comment

If Russia makes it to the Dnieper, it's in their interests to (surreptitiously) hasten the entry of the Ukrainian rump state into NATO, because then this state cannot be used by NATO as a proxy against Russia. Attacks out of this territory against Russia would then be direct conflict between NATO and Russia, which NATO wants to avoid.

Expand full comment
May 17·edited May 17

NATO won't do it, they will dangle the carrot, but never take them in. It is too useful as a proxy to hit Russia from behind the back of.

But the rump state being in NATO is also a Russian defeat. Remember, the original goal here was to move all US missiles back to the Cold War lines.

Also remember how Russians refer to Ukrainians now -- the word often used is "virus". And it is a virus that will keep infecting unless it is completely wiped out. There will be no security for Russia, and for Belarus too (look at the map) with a viciously Russophobic rump state. And it will be even more viciously Russophobic than now, what else could it be? It will be a never ending source of terrorism, malign cultural influence, irredentism, etc.

Expand full comment

"NATO won't do it".

Depends on how smart (or dumb) they really are.

Propaganda is very important to the US, and foiling Putin's drive to the Atlantic with just the opposite--an eastward expansion of NATO--can be spun as a big US victory over Russia Man Bad.

You and I (and anyone with at least half a brain) can see that taking this amazing proxy off the table is a big loss for the US in its war against Russia. But again, the question is how smart or dumb are they really?

Expand full comment

Ukraine won't ever get in NATO meaning your statement is mute to begin with. Why isn't it in NATO now? Why wasn't it in NATO in 2021? Ukraine had nothing to offer NATO except a huge amount of facist extremists. That will go down well with a the other NATO countries. Who is making statements about this happening? More importantly who is not making statements about this? For a country to be accepted into NATO 100% of the countries have to agree. The fact of the matter is how many Ukrainians themselves went out & voted for the current bunch of criminals? You have some opinions not based on realities. If you believe you're as smart as you think you are. You should have an idea of the percentage of Ukrainians who voted for this mob. I give you some help as you don't appear to base your statements on realities. It was a big minority

Expand full comment

Note that the Baltics also have a lot of fascist extremist, and they are in NATO. You just don't hear about it as much. But otherwise they are miniature copies of western Ukraine. Same history, same present.

Expand full comment

Since the European vassal states have been ordained by the US to solely prosecute the proxy war it seems to a never ending conclusion you omit to factor in the negative effects on a long list of disparate EU states whose resources will be depleted, political stability weakened by the continuous threats and actions of a widening and escalating European war in Ukraine. In addition the economic impact of the proxy war will continue to play out in unforeseen directions as an incompetent elite drowns in its own hubris.

Expand full comment

All of this is assuming they don't go through Belarus again. ;)

Expand full comment

I do not think Russia want this to drag on for years just for the sake of draining the Anglo-Saxons of their resources. Putin know that he can win in Ukraine but has to make room for winning the ”peace”. If Ukraine crumbles and Russia ”wins” there will be no proclamation of peace and return to everyday life a la 2020. West will arm and arm and put even more pressure on Russia and China. They will indeed seize all of Russias assets. They will intensify colour-revolutions and insurgency whereever they can. All in vain of course but enough to force Russia to uphold a considerably strength. The same goes for the scenario where river Dnieper becomes too big an obstacle and creates a situation of stalement/Korea-truce. Russia must then hold a very active force on alert. The China-agreements is good for both sides and will probably make them and Brics self-sufficient for ever. My point is that Putin knows that whenever his forces make an Ukrainian surrender likely (or if Ukraine pull out the thumb and capitulates anyway) the War will not be over - just continue by other means or on another fronts. The US/West arrogant self-concept is so deeply violated that it takes enormously wise leadership to rise from the humiliation of their own making. So the War will continue even when Russia secure a win on the Ukrainian scene of theater.

Expand full comment

Nice post, Mikey. My thoughts entirely.

Expand full comment

"The US/West arrogant self-concept is so deeply violated that it takes enormously wise leadership to rise from the humiliation of their own making."

Currently, the collective west is a proverbial donkey saddled and ruled by triumphant zionists. Don't expect any wisdom from the psychotic and shameless supremacist tribe. The "effendis" will sacrifice all "others" with joy and without a shred of humiliation. When western financial system is controlled by a private zionist banking cartel (by people indoctrinated from childhood in hatred, fear, and amorality), the whole Humanity is in danger. The ongoing mass slaughters of Palestinian children and women and the stunning 'antisemitism awareness bill' targeting the core of the First Amendment demonstrate the total lack of shame on a part of the Knesset on Potomac populated by compradors and owned by zionists.

Expand full comment

I didnt expect and dont expect the current leadership to be wise….therefore I wrote

”So the War will continue even when Russia secure…” All those kabals and tribes I dont dwell on. I am aware of a lot of powerfactions in all of US and Europe. But you have these in Russia and China too. The Western system of Banking is deeply corrupt and a very troubling pyramid-hoax.

Expand full comment

The U.S. has asked Cambodia to explain its r'ship w/ Beijing, citing the presence of Chinese warships docked @ Cambodia's Ream Naval Base. That the U.S. publicly requested an explanation, making sure that the matter reached AP news & other outlets, reveals a typical hegemon tactic in-play: rather than quietly hashing out the situation behind the scenes, the hegemon's move to air this out before international eyes ups the ante.

Page 47 of the Hegemon's Playbook describes how to sabotage & disable efforts by countries like Cambodia to establish trade routes or other r'ships w/ China

Cambodia rocking back on its heels, playing defense, forced to cough up an explanation

Page 49 of the Hegemon's Playbook: if you're defending you're losing

Expand full comment

I think you are right, unfortunately. I can just hear those who said of not winning in Vietnam: the Army was forced to fight with one hand tied behind its back! For Russia, decimating the Ukrainian army is the easy part. Much more problematic is a long-term settlement that does not require Russia to maintain 15 divisions in-country.

Expand full comment

“It could take years.” An unfortunate reality, I suppose. Ukraine will look like Carthage when the Romans finally conquered it. Nobody will dare to get on a tractor to prepare for planting some of the best farmland on the planet because they might run over a mine.

Expand full comment

"You have a water barrier. Shorter lines. Shorter supply lines. Concentrated forces."

Concentrated forces means they get killed by Russian long range precision weapons. War is different now. Shorter lines help, but those smaller distances also make it easier to envelope those forces in a cauldron. The Dnieper as a water barrier is way overrated. For starters, Russia can come in from the north, from Belarus behind that water barrier. Russia also has the ability to deploy tens of thousands of FABs to simply annihilate large portions of defensive positions along the Dnieper, so much so that bridgeheads in multiple places can bring plenty of forces over. But Russia is in no hurry, so it could just pound the life out of the Banderist regime for another couple of years.

Russia (not just Putin - it's the whole team in action there...) is preparing for a long game because the real war they are fighting is against the US. Kiev is just road kill on the way to what ultimately is likely to become a much hotter and larger showdown with the US.

You're 100% correct in writing that Russia doesn't mind bleeding the US bloc's armories and economies dry.

Expand full comment

9% of GDP is a lot. China of course can tilt the industrial and economic balance whichever way it wishes.

Any idea how many S400 systems are produced, and how much the missiles cost? Do you think it's possible those jets were decoys, to draw strikes?

Expand full comment

One clarification: just weeks ago Peskov said the defense spending was 6.7% of GDP https://www.rt.com/russia/597476-kremlin-explains-decisions/

Now Putin said that the *combined* "defense and security" spending is 8.7%. I'm not entirely sure the separate 'security' spending is but this seems to indicate the purely "military budget" aspect is 6.7%.

Of course, this still is much higher than almost any country, though I failed to mention Saudi Arabia apparently does have a higher expenditure at 7.1%, as does Algeria at 8.2% as per wiki. But out of countries classically considered serious militaries, only Israel is close at 5.3%.

So Russia's supposed 6.7%, if that's what it truly is, still represents a very high drift.

As for S-400s, not sure if anyone knows precisely but judging by previous delivery schedules, they *appear* to have delivered upwards of 75 battalions total to both Russia and foreign customers since 2007. A rough napkin calculation of 17 years divided into 75 battalions x 8 launchers, or 600 launchers gives us the ability to manufacture about 4 battalions or 35 launchers per year, or almost 3 launchers per month.

But it's difficult to know how accurate such rough calculations are especially since they're based on signed contracts, wherein work speeds up. Not sure what kind of contract they have for current deliveries if any.

Either way, with a reported total 450-500 S-400 launchers, Russia is not in danger of running out any time soon. I'd be more concerned about the attrition of trained personnel manning those launchers.

Oryx lists a grand total of 1 previous S-400 radar destroyed and 9 total launchers allegedly destroyed in the course of the entire SMO.

As for jets/decoys, it's possible but doubtful given the scale of the burn marks. Here's a higher rez: https://imgur.com/a/Ifab14R

But who knows, could be.

Expand full comment
May 17·edited May 17

The TELs are plentiful. It's a truck with tubes and some special wiring to fire the missiles.

The radar and control vehicles are the precious ones and the bottleneck. So that hit on Belbek hurts.

Interceptor supply isn't infinite either. Although the big problem now are drones, and that is primarily Pantsir's jobs, whose missiles are small and relatively cheap.

Also, remember that there was a serious sabotage recently in the factory that makes the S-400 missiles.

Expect more of that -- Russian internal security is unfortunately completely shot, and nowhere nearly enough has been done to tighten it more than two years into this...

Expand full comment

Sure, but like I said, even Oryx only lists 1 previous S-400 radar being hit in the entire SMO. This would represent the 2nd. That's not exactly critical.

As for missiles, it depends which ones it's loaded in. S-400s have a variety of missiles, the longer range ones like 40N6E are expensive, while the shorter range are much cheaper as well.

Not sure what S-400 missile production is though going by Patriot rates which were just stated to be 500 missiles per year, we can expect that Russia can significantly outperform those numbers.

And no, there wasn't any serious sabotage anywhere, you may have fallen for Ukrainian fakes.

Expand full comment

Thanks. X and Youtube have been trying to push footage on me lately of Ru losses and Ukr hits. Particularly on Crimea-Sevastopol and Kharkov. They make it look like AD is nonexistant. I never know what to believe.

A guy I know who was demobilized says the scale and scope of decoys is insane. They'll stick space heaters in decoys so that they show up on IR or use small generators. So I have to wonder that Ru is trying to get Ukr to "shoot their wad" and expend the ATACMS, since they aren't able to interdict them very effectively otherwise

Expand full comment

I think you underestimate the significance of the Ukrainian attacks on Crimea. You say there is no strategic goals there and they will not win the War on simply attacking targets on Crimea. True, they will not win, but they are inflicting (their own) thousands wounds and have effectively shut down the Belbek and Dzankoi airports. They have forced the Russian fleet to move to other ports East. The attacks on the Crimeabridge did speed up the Railway-connection through Zaporiska oblast. Russia needs to deploy an large amount of AD and the loss of a battery, 3-4 launchers and radar, cost about $800 milj.

I do like your writing and analyses but in this case you should ”rewrite” some piece with another perspective. I do agree , in part, that Ukraine has used Crimea and Belgorod as a showpiece of strength so to get even more weapons. But due to the deep involvement of British SBS and the French you have to see it as an operation with strategic meaning. Certainly Ukraine and West is defending Odessa and western part of Black Sea fiercely and it is strategically important for both parts. Denying Russia airfields ”near” Cherson facilitates the defense west of Dnieper. What is the consequences for the Russians forces in the future? Nearly all big landing ships has been taken out and I call it luckily because if Russia had any idea of using them against Odessa - there would have been suicidal tasks with all drones and missiles there is. To take Odessa now is, if not impossible, so definitely more difficult than it was 2022. My conclusion is that Ukraine have made a strategic impact on the course of War in Black Sea/Crimea. Their futile landing operations was of course meaningless (if not they landed sabotage/recon-groups still active). You write that the ATACMS should be used on C2-nods and ammodepots instead. At the same time we now that the missile only can bring a load of 250 kg HE. Most ATACMS seems to be armed with sub-munitions unable to penetrate a Commandbunker or a concrete warehouse. And thanks to your articles we have the information that Russia is spreading out the logistic the closer you get to the front. So what is the point? Russia has plastered the Ukrainians with thousands of drones and missiles and still Ukraine have logistical means to rearm the front. 100 or 200 ATACMS could not inflict as much strategic impact on the Russians side even if 30% of them get through. Anyway, many thanks, for the god job on all those articles you write!

Expand full comment

there's lots and lots wrong with what you write, but just to single out one point

"Nearly all big landing ships has been taken out"

only two BDKs have actually been sunk (Novocherkassk and Caesar Kunikov). Minsk is being repaired, and 10 more are in active service across different fleets. though, obviously, Russia isn't likely to use them for a landing at Odessa or something similarly stupid and unnecessary.

Expand full comment

”across different fleets…” has no bearing on Black Sea fleet. 2 sunk, 2-3 damaged and 8 in service. And as I wrote they could not use them anymore. Instead of ”lots” wrong you and nitpicking you can discuss the topic: that Ukraine has forced Russia to defend themselves in the Black Sea instead of sea-superiority.

Expand full comment

Ok, now please address elephant in the room. What’s the point of landing ships and Black Sea fleet as a whole in this war?

Expand full comment

Iran should have already orderd them. Many blew up in that supply ship nato burned up

Expand full comment