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Russia Now Going for Poland Perhaps.

edited March 2022 in Other Investing
10 miles from Polish border. If a full on attack occurs, expect more downside and perhaps a broader more terrible war. Yet peace negotiators are “cautiously optimistic.” Strange.


  • I don't think so.

    It may be just a warning for the new arms supply caravans moving openly through the Western Ukraine border and/or gifted old MIG planes flying through the Western Ukraine borders.

    Until the last few days, the Western Ukraine had been quiet with war fronts in North, East, South.
  • edited March 2022
    Not quite sure what Sullivan means by "respond" in the following short article and video clip. Future Russian actions may draw out an answer if negotiations don't produce results.

    Sullivan added that an attack on NATO territory—even an accidental shot—the "NATO alliance would respond to that."

    Jake Sullivan: U.S. will defend "every inch of NATO territory" as Russia strikes western Ukraine

  • edited March 2022

    I don't think so.

    It may be just a warning for the new arms supply caravans moving openly through the Western Ukraine border and/or gifted old MIG planes flying through the Western Ukraine borders.

    Until the last few days, the Western Ukraine had been quiet with war fronts in North, East, South.

    Yes - the western movement of arms into Ukraine is likely the crux of the issue. Still … I find this alarming. If the impetus towards broader war doesn’t slow by morning, “ look out below” as the markets go. Of course, there are much more serious issues to contemplate.

    The bully he is, Putin wants to test the will of NATO / the western alliance to stand up to him. There’s some intonation in parts of Barron’s that Americans’ support for Ukraine may wane as time wears on and may in the coming year(s) usher in leadership in Washington more sympathetic to Russia - a complicated mess IMHO.

    Thanks @LewisBraham for the update.
  • From Axios - "The big picture: The attack in western Ukraine comes after Russia warned that arms shipments from NATO countries would be "legitimate targets" for Russian strikes."
  • Russia isn't set to take on NATO. This strike is intended to disrupt the arms supply chain from Poland.
  • I agree. Putin may be a lot of things, but stupid isn't one of them. Russia warned that arms shipments from NATO countries would be "legitimate targets".

    Russia warned that arms shipments within NATO countries would be "legitimate targets". If he tried that NATO would have aircraft over Ukraine in a matter of hours.
  • @Old_Joe. “Stupid isn’t one of them.” For a guy who isn’t stupid he sure has made a long series of stupid choices of late.
  • Even smart people can make serious miscalculations. They may sometimes do things which turn out to have been stupid, but that doesn't make them stupid, unless they continue down that street. If Putin, after subjugating Ukraine, continues down that street then yes, he will be very stupid indeed.
  • Below are extensive excerpts from a current article in The Economist. The article focuses on the parallels with the Soviet Union under Stalin. I've seriously abridged the article to include some of the more serious points that it makes.

    Of those points, I think that this is one of the most important: "American army doctrine says that to face down an insurgency—in this case, one backed by NATO—occupiers need 20 to 25 soldiers per 1,000 people; Russia has a little over four."

    When Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine, he dreamed of restoring the glory of the Russian empire. He has ended up restoring the terror of Josef Stalin. That is not only because he has unleashed the most violent act of unprovoked aggression in Europe since 1939, but also because, as a result, he is turning himself into a dictator at home.

    Consider how the war was planned. Russia’s president thought Ukraine would rapidly collapse, so he did not prepare his people for the invasion or his soldiers for their mission. After two terrible weeks on the battlefield, he is still denying that he is waging what may become Europe’s biggest war since 1945. He has shut down almost the entire independent media, threatened journalists with up to 15 years in jail if they do not parrot official falsehoods, and had anti-war protesters arrested in their thousands.

    And to gauge Mr Putin’s paranoia, imagine how the war ends. Russia has more firepower than Ukraine. It is still making progress, especially in the south. It may yet capture the capital, Kyiv. And yet, even if the war drags on for months, it is hard to see Mr Putin as the victor.

    Suppose that Russia manages to impose a new government. Ukrainians are now united against the invader. Mr Putin’s puppet could not rule without an occupation, but Russia does not have the money or the troops to garrison even half of Ukraine. American army doctrine says that to face down an insurgency—in this case, one backed by NATO—occupiers need 20 to 25 soldiers per 1,000 people; Russia has a little over four.

    The truth is sinking in that, by attacking Ukraine, Mr Putin has committed a catastrophic error. He has wrecked the reputation of Russia’s supposedly formidable armed forces, which have proved tactically inept against a smaller, worse-armed but motivated opponent. Russia has lost mountains of equipment and endured thousands of casualties, almost as many in two weeks as America has suffered in Iraq since it invaded in 2003.

    And, as Stalin did, Mr Putin is destroying the bourgeoisie, the great motor of Russia’s modernisation. Instead of being sent to the gulag, they are fleeing to cities like Istanbul, in Turkey, and Yerevan, in Armenia. Those who choose to stay are being muzzled by restrictions on free speech and free association. They will be battered by high inflation and economic dislocation. In just two weeks, they have lost their country.

  • edited March 2022
    Could be true, and I hope it is that this is a "catastrophic error" on Putin's part that will lead to his downfall, but could also be a grave misunderstanding of Russian culture and how entrenched totalitarian regimes and their leaders can be. Stalin if I recall stuck around for quite a while:
  • There seem to be two takes on Pootin. 1) he is a genius who aims to restore Mother Russia and just miscalculated how hard Ukraine would fight, having assumed his heavy weapons etc could take them out before his conscript army fell apart. He assumed, so far correctly, the West would not use direct military action to stop him

    To support this view, is news that his spy chiefs are under house arrest, reportedly for not reporting possibility of Ukraine resistance.

    The hope here is sanctions will be so hard that he will take the rational out and back down.

    2) Pootin is insane, a mad man whose only goal is this restoration and domination of Europe and he will resort to any tactic ( including nukes) if he is thwarted or backed into a corner.

    Either way, Ukraine is in deep trouble unless NATO and the USA intervene with missile defenses protecting Western Ukraine, fighters and maybe even troops.

    While predicting what Pootin would do in this situation is above my pay grade, I think we make a big mistake telling him what we "will not do", and relying on third parties to deliver the aid, or telling the Ukrainians to come pick it up.

    By accepting his threat that foreign convoys in an independent country are legitimate targets, we have acquiesced to his game plan, without standing up to him.
    The Ukraine is a free country where the USA and NATO have ever right to fly (heavily armed if necessary) supply convoys in, if requested by the government. Without this direct aid, Ukraine might as well surrender as the outcome will be the same.

    We beat Stalin during the Berlin Airlift using our right to resupply our allies. What is the difference?
  • We beat Stalin during the Berlin Airlift using our right to resupply our allies. What is the difference?

    Bingo. The West has been chickenshit in their response to the Pootin-monster. Uncle Joe publicly warned that anything more than what's already being done would result in WW 3. ..... No one wants THAT. My guess is that, given what we have seen from the Russians already, their troops would be outmatched by Western troops. But the air war and the missiles would be a serious threat, not to be made light of, yes.Still Ukraine is sovereign and free, right? If NATO won't do anything more than what's already happening, then they'd better hope that the continued flow of ammunition and equipment is not interrupted or cut. Pootin wants to play "chicken." Time to call his bluff.
  • If successful in Ukraine, his next target would be Transnistria, a breakaway state wedged between Moldova and Ukraine. This area was also unintentionally revealed on a map while the Belarus president was addressing his security council !
  • edited March 2022
    Moldova is the next target as revealed by Lukashenko. NATO and Biden need to make that clear to Putin that they are free to move in and out of Ukraine without being threatened. Any incident could launch into WWIII.

    US has mobilized 8,000 troop and to Europe with 30,000 already stationed in Germany. NATO troop also have moved up to Poland and Romania just in case.

    It is equally as important for the Scandinavian countries to join NATO instead staying neutral for the defense of the continent.
  • "We beat Stalin during the Berlin Airlift using our right to resupply our allies. What is the difference?"

    The difference is this: After Germany's surrender there was a documented legal agreement dividing Berlin into four zones, under the authority of Britain, France, the US, and the Soviets. Berlin itself lay well within the section of Germany which was under the legal occupation of the Soviets.

    The United States had a clearly defined and recognized agreement with the Soviets allowing access to our control zone by two specifically defined routes: one by land, one by air. The Soviets decided to test the United States by denying access over the land route. It was impossible to challenge that situation without direct military confrontation.

    The US then initiated an airlift via the specifically defined air corridor, in effect also daring Russia to shoot down our aircraft. The Russians blinked.

    There is no comparable route into Ukraine. There is no airfield available as a destination. Any airfield that we attempted to use, assuming that any are still viable, would immediately come under heavy Russian attack. The odds of American aircraft and personnel being destroyed would be unacceptable, and could easily lead into direct military combat with Russia. It is problematic whether other NATO countries would feel obligated to support us in this situation.
  • The unfortunate equation here is that Europe with a population of 500M is unwilling to die for Ukraine with a population of less than 50M. An attack on a NATO country would dramatically change the game and would be defacto WW3
  • I apologize to anyone who feels this thread is not investment related, and I don't know what category it was started in, but as this is a much more reasonable audience to have this discussion with ( compared to Twitter or FB) I would appreciate it if we could continue. I do think unless the conflict ends quickly ( which is unlikely unless Pootin is "disappeared") it could push the world into a recession, because of commodity prices and supply chain disruptions. There are also implications for emerging markets, climate change, and big tech, all of which have to confront the potential "end of globalization"


    In international relations, there really is no "legal agreement" that is enforceable. Treaties are supposedly not to be broken, but the Russians track record since 1917 is abysmal.

    Many people ( including my peace loving Connecticut farm girl Mother) believed we should have used military force against the Russian blockade in 1948, considering Russia did not have a functional atomic bomb until 1949. Taking the airlift way out convinced Stalin that the West was war weary and would not fight to protect democracies in the west. Thus started the Cold War.

    Our obligations to Ukraine stem from the Budapest Memorandum, which convinced them it was safe to give up their extensive nuclear arsenal. To convince them to do so, US and NATO agreed to protect them from future Russian aggression. While the language does not specifically say NATO will use military force, it clearly commits us to an obligatory defense of Ukraine in today's circumstances.

    "But they were told at the time that the United States and Western powers — so certainly at least the United States and Great Britain — take their political commitments really seriously. This is a document signed at the highest level by the heads of state. So the implication was Ukraine would not be left to stand alone and face a threat should it come under one.
    So they had this faith that the West would stand by them, or certainly the United States, the signatories, and Great Britain, would stand up for Ukraine should it come under threat."

    In great power politics, intent and projection count, as do standing up to your commitments. While Biden has done a great job unifying NATO and using sanctions to destroy the Russian economy, this will probably not be enough to force Pootin to peace talks. He apparently is willing to destroy Ukraine. A continued war only makes sense if Pootin believes Russia can withdraw economically from the world, confiscate any property of Western firms that refuse to do business with him, and rely on it's energy and commodity resources ( and China) to outlast the West's ability to isolate him. So far it looks as this is his game plan.

    From what I have read, most people think the West's united response has given the Chinese significant pause concerning Taiwan. But all it may have done is convince China that the West will not fight to defend Taiwan, and as long as China's economy and foreign reserves are isolated enough from western sanctions they can eventually go ahead. This may take another decade. Hopefully in that time the US can become "chip independent" and eliminate the need for 50% of our chips coming from Taiwan. But this doe little to alleviate our dependence on Chinese sources for rare earths etc.

    There is a large amount of insightful military analysis of the Russian debacle so far on the internet. Logistics are their weak spot and may prove to be their downfall.
    I recommend reading Maj General Mike Ryan( Australian) @Warinthefuture or

    It gets into the weeds about the track gauges of the European vs Russian railroads.
  • For whatever interest it may hold

    Russia Imports
  • Another thing to look at is where the Ukraine and Russian wheat and agg products go. Most of it is to Emerging Markets Egypt India etc. While Russia is likely to continue this trade, I doubt there will be much Ukraine wheat etc leaving Ukraine for a long time. What will these higher prices do to those economies? and what will Egypt and India be forced to do to keep on Russian good side, to avoid food riots?

    It is a mess all right.
  • The inventory on soft commodities including wheat, corn and soybean is low right now. DBC, an agriculture commodity ETF has been rising since 2021 and continuing during the Ukraine war. Ukraine is key grain producer for Europe and Africa. There is reported shortage already in Africa.
  • Some countries, Egypt for example, import most of their wheat from Russia and Ukraine. Major shortages or steep price increases may lead to civil unrest in those areas.
  • Pretty picture. Oy. Right, sanctions will bury the Russian economy, but that won't stop Poot-brain. Lots of non-aligned countries will buy his wheat and whatever else. He will still have trading partners. China will continue to be at the very least, marginally helpful to the Poot-breath. Meanwhile, uncle Joe needs to start using stronger vocabulary, and demonstrate a willingness to do more than screw with the Russian economy and oligarchs. Poot-scum is playing hardball. We must step up to the plate not expecting fat pitches. We must face him with spine, not jello.
  • edited March 2022
    @Crash- Talk is cheap, but how many in our country are clamoring to send American lives into yet another war? What you don't seem to be understanding is that at this point NATO is not involved, and if we go it alone that's exactly where we will be. Alone.

    So how exactly would we even get troops near to Ukraine without NATO involvement? Do you really think that the NATO nations bordering Ukraine aren't thinking that Putin might respond with low-yield tactical nuclear weapons if he's pushed into a corner? Do you really think that the US isn't talking to all of them about this?

    Talk is cheap. Reality isn't.
  • @Old_Joe
    Surely there are open channels and back-channels that are busy right now. I'm not necessarily wanting US troops in Ukraine. But there should be a gi-normous BLITZ of weapons and arms and machinery in to Ukraine by which they themselves can prevail. Yes, we are helping militarily already. Look at Poland's offer, though. Rejected. Shit. Surely there must be a way. Let the Ukraine pilots come and get them. There were British personnel who came across the pond to collect some old warships and transports under Lend-Lease, eh? Of course, the NATO border countries are freaked out about the prospect of tactical nukes. And look at the near catastrophe---again--- at Chernobyl. ...I just don't see how the World Order would not be in a worse place if we allow the Poot-snot to "liberate" Ukraine. What OUGHT to be happening is a response that enables Ukraine to RECLAIM Donbas and the Crimea! @rono has expressed it very well: either resign yourself to giving up what is at stake, or go all-out and SUBDUE the enemy. SUBDUE!

    a la rono, I finish now, quoting the Master Sgt: "ratshit." The whole thing sucks. The Poot-spooge already knows he's got the West intimidated. What's right and what's wrong still matters. Dammit.
  • edited March 2022
    Let's say you work in a bar and there's a drunken bruiser in it whom you have the muscle to throw out, but not without destroying the entire bar. He is an insecure egomaniac who needs to feel like he's won even when he loses. How do you get him out? You give him something, a bottle with a place's name on it, so he can go home, proclaim victory and save face while you still retain control of the bar, and can also proclaim victory. The question is which bottle do you give him?
  • Yes, something along those lines. If there's anything left of the bar, though, we'll all be lucky.
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