In the past twenty years, Russia has learned to battle cities inhabited by Muslim civilians and defended by Islamic fighters. In Ukraine, it is facing a different scenario where NATO becomes a major player and well-armed Ukrainians, using western technologies, are fiercely defending their homeland. Something that Vladimir Putin failed to consider in his calculations considering the U.S. timid responses to Russian aggression in the past. In short, the Russian war machine miscalculated how determined have been the Ukrainian defenses and NATO’s engagement in the war effort.
While the western world was mostly disinterested in seriously defending Chechnya and Syria, they were studying Russian tactics and weaponry. Especially, the Russian hybrid approach to engaging its enemy. Those observations are beginning to yield some results as we witnessed for the first time the U.S. shaping the information war by leaking battlefield intelligence, as well as stepping in front of the disinformation campaign the Russians have perfected since their earliest invasion against Ukraine in 2014.
I believe that the combination of both US engagement to defend Ukraine militarily and its own information warfare are taking Putin by surprise. He neither controls the western narrative, nor the battlefield superiority his earliest wars afforded him to learn from.
If followers of the Ukraine campaign feel that Putin is on the ropes, it is because he is.
If one had to guess, Putin probably thought President Biden would simply respond with the same timidity as President Obama did in 2014.
TWO STEPS AHEAD
The Institute for the Study of War (ISW), which is monitoring Russian troops deployments and movements, has been accurately predicting them. Its latest predictions concentrate on the town of Soliviansk some 300 miles east of Kiyv.
Last week, Max Strelnyk, a deputy in the Izium city council’s office, told CNN:
It seems like those in the U.S. responsible for defending Ukraine strategically, in addition to Ukrainian intelligence intercepting Russian tactics, gives the west the edge over Russian superiority on the field. Putin did not calculate either of those two elements in his assumptions. If one had to guess, Putin probably thought President Biden would simply respond with the same timidity as President Obama did in 2014.
Way to go Putin failing your own goals.
Way to go President Biden responding to Russian aggression with strength.
Ukraine, today, is defending all of Europe from the terror of a mass murderer with a cruel and twisted reading of history.
BUT PUTIN IS LEARNING FOR HIS NEXT WAR
Anyone who thinks the Russian military is not learning from its mistakes is a fool. Everything happening on the battlefield, and in how we are responding, increases the learning curve of the Russian military. For another war against another European ally in the future.
This is why winning the war in Ukraine is essential. Putin cannot declare any victory from a well-documented defeat, nor should we give him even the tiniest of reasons to spin the Ukraine war to his advantage. World peace rests on this statement.
The west cannot possibly permit Vladimir Putin to regroup for another war in the future. His defeat is about our own security, and that of western civilization. It’s that imperative for President Biden and NATO to make Putin suffer the ultimate Russian shame in the form of a horrid beating in war. In the long-run, he won’t survive that blow. The Russian people will bring him down from his tower of terror to face the music of his own incompetence. And rightly so.
Whatever Putin is learning from the Ukraine war cannot be put into practice again in the future. Period.
This means the U.S. and Europe must open the weapon conveyor belt spigot by delivering whatever the Ukrainian military is asking for. Ukraine, today, is defending all of Europe from the terror of a mass murderer with a cruel and twisted reading of history.