The Invasion of Ukraine

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EACLucifer
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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Wed Nov 23, 2022 12:58 pm

More attacks. Civilian targets again. Electricity and water, too; the goal is clearly to kill civilians directly and indirectly, and to displace them.

We have solutions to this problem, we need to stop tiptoeing around a failing military that daren't touch NATO and supply the right tools for the job.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by sTeamTraen » Wed Nov 23, 2022 4:34 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Wed Nov 23, 2022 12:58 pm
More attacks. Civilian targets again. Electricity and water, too; the goal is clearly to kill civilians directly and indirectly, and to displace them.

We have solutions to this problem, we need to stop tiptoeing around a failing military that daren't touch NATO and supply the right tools for the job.
A couple of weeks ago, Macron made a good speech in which he explicitly mentioned the idea of direct Western help to keep the electricity grid working. France and Germany have big infrastructure companies like Alstom, Legrand, Siemens, etc, which can do this. Siemens, in particular, has a bunch of people presumably on light duties since they left Russia back in March. I don't suppose we will get daily updates about them, but I wonder what, if anything, was set in motion after that speech.
Something something hammer something something nail

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by nekomatic » Wed Nov 23, 2022 5:33 pm

sTeamTraen wrote:
Wed Nov 23, 2022 4:34 pm
light duties
:D
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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Sciolus » Wed Nov 23, 2022 10:37 pm

sTeamTraen wrote:
Wed Nov 23, 2022 4:34 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Wed Nov 23, 2022 12:58 pm
More attacks. Civilian targets again. Electricity and water, too; the goal is clearly to kill civilians directly and indirectly, and to displace them.

We have solutions to this problem, we need to stop tiptoeing around a failing military that daren't touch NATO and supply the right tools for the job.
A couple of weeks ago, Macron made a good speech in which he explicitly mentioned the idea of direct Western help to keep the electricity grid working. France and Germany have big infrastructure companies like Alstom, Legrand, Siemens, etc, which can do this. Siemens, in particular, has a bunch of people presumably on light duties since they left Russia back in March. I don't suppose we will get daily updates about them, but I wonder what, if anything, was set in motion after that speech.
I believe a common tactic is to bomb the infrastructure, then bomb it again a few hours later when the maintenance and repair teams are there, killing them so they can't repair any other kit. That would be interesting if foreign workers were involved.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by plodder » Thu Nov 24, 2022 5:57 pm

Infrastructure specialists like the firm I work for are keeping a very close eye on the Ukrainian rebuild. We’re not out there yet but it’s only a matter of time.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by jimbob » Thu Nov 24, 2022 9:28 pm

Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Fri Nov 25, 2022 11:45 am

Beginning to see snow in footage coming out of Ukraine. Not much yet on the Bakhmut front, but streaks of snow and frost indicating it is clearly damn cold. Temperatures forecast to drop meaningfully below freezing in the coming week in much of the country (Met Office only has Oblast capitals and I only checked areas where there's fighting).

This will make life harder for civilians. Russia is deliberately targetting electricity and heating systems for a reason - to kill and displace Ukrainian civilians.

On the front lines, it appears the temperatures will favour Ukraine. They have better access to cold weather kit, with a number of nations including the UK and Canada supplying significant quantities of cold weather kit, though there is also a lot of crowdfunding going on. There's already footage emerging of Russians clearly struggling with the cold, barely reacting to what's going on around them even as they come under attack. I won't link to it for fairly obvious reasons.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Fri Nov 25, 2022 1:48 pm

sTeamTraen wrote:
Wed Nov 23, 2022 4:34 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Wed Nov 23, 2022 12:58 pm
More attacks. Civilian targets again. Electricity and water, too; the goal is clearly to kill civilians directly and indirectly, and to displace them.

We have solutions to this problem, we need to stop tiptoeing around a failing military that daren't touch NATO and supply the right tools for the job.
A couple of weeks ago, Macron made a good speech in which he explicitly mentioned the idea of direct Western help to keep the electricity grid working. France and Germany have big infrastructure companies like Alstom, Legrand, Siemens, etc, which can do this. Siemens, in particular, has a bunch of people presumably on light duties since they left Russia back in March. I don't suppose we will get daily updates about them, but I wonder what, if anything, was set in motion after that speech.
Just seen mention of France sending a hundred "powerful" generators to assist, so clearly they are doing something.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Woodchopper » Fri Nov 25, 2022 6:48 pm

the colder the temperatures people experience, the more likely they are to die. And if the historical relationships between mortality, weather and energy costs continue to apply—which they may not, given how high current prices are—the death toll from Mr Putin’s “energy weapon” could exceed the number of soldiers who have died so far in combat.

[…]

In the past, changes in energy prices have had a small effect on deaths. But this year’s cost increases are remarkably large. We built a statistical model to assess the effect this price shock might have.

The relationship between energy prices and winter deaths could change this year. But if past patterns persist, current electricity prices would drive deaths above the historical average even in the mildest winter.

Exact mortality totals still depend on other factors, particularly temperature. In a mild winter, the increase in deaths might be limited to 32,000 above the historical average (accounting for changes in population). A harsh winter could cost a total of 335,000 extra lives.

Four main factors affect how many people will die in Europe (outside Ukraine) this winter. The two most straightforward ones are the severity of the flu season and temperatures. Cold helps viruses. It inhibits immune systems, lets pathogens survive longer when airborne and leads people to congregate indoors. In addition, as the body’s temperature falls, blood thickens and its pressure rises, raising the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Irritated airways can also obstruct breathing. In Britain weekly death rates from cardiovascular causes are 26% higher in winter than summer. Those from respiratory diseases are 76% higher. These deaths are concentrated among the old. Across Europe, 28% more people aged at least 80—who account for 49% of total mortality—die in the coldest months than in the warmest ones.
Surprisingly, the gap in seasonal death rates is greater in warm countries than in cold ones. In Portugal 36% more people die per week in winter than in summer, whereas in Finland just 13% more do. Cooler countries have better heating and insulation. They also tend to be unusually rich and have relatively young populations. However, when you compare temperatures within countries rather than between them, the data confirm that cold kills. On average, in a winter 1°C colder than normal for a given country, 1.2% more people die.

Temperatures in the winter of 2022-23 are likely to land between the highs and lows of recent decades. Now that most restrictions on movement related to covid-19 have been relaxed, the effects of flu will probably fall within the range seen in 2000-19 as well. Energy prices, the third main factor affecting winter deaths, are also relatively constrained. Although wholesale fuel costs fluctuate, many governments have imposed energy-price ceilings for households. Most of these caps are well above last year’s costs, but they will shield consumers from further rises in market prices.
The final element, however, is much less certain: the relationship between energy costs and deaths. We estimate this using our statistical model, which predicts how many people die in each winter week in each of 226 European regions. The model applies to the eu-27 countries, except Malta, plus Britain, Norway and Switzerland. It forecasts deaths based on weather, demography, influenza, energy efficiency, incomes, government spending and electricity costs, which are closely correlated to prices for a wide variety of heating fuels. Using data from 2000-19—we excluded 2020 and 2021 because of covid-19—the model was highly accurate, accounting for 90% of variation in death rates. When we tested its predictions on years not used to train it, it did nearly as well.
High fuel prices can exacerbate the effect of low temperatures on deaths, by deterring people from using heat and raising their exposure to cold. Given average weather, the model finds that a 10% rise in electricity prices is associated with a 0.6% increase in deaths, though this number is greater in cold weeks and smaller in mild ones. An academic study of American data in 2019 produced a similar estimate.
In recent decades consumer energy prices have had only a modest impact on winter mortality, because they have oscillated within a fairly narrow band. In a typical European country, holding other factors constant, increasing the electricity price from its lowest level in 2000-19 to its highest raises the model’s estimate of weekly death rates by just 3%. In contrast, reducing the temperature from the highest level in that period to the lowest increases them by 12%.
Now, however, prices have broken out of their prior range. The rise in inflation-adjusted electricity costs since 2020 is 60% greater than the gap between the highest and lowest prices in 2000-19. As a result, the relationship between energy costs and deaths could behave differently this year than it has in the past. In cases like Italy’s, where electricity costs are up nearly 200% since 2020, extrapolating a linear relationship yields extremely high death estimates.
Two other variables absent from long-run data could also affect death rates this year. Many countries have introduced or expanded cash-transfer schemes to help people pay energy bills, which should reduce deaths below the model’s expectations to some degree. And covid-19 could either raise mortality—by making it even more perilous to shiver through cold weather—or lower it, because the virus has already killed many of the old, frail people who are most vulnerable to the cold.
Such uncertainty makes it hard to predict mortality in Europe this winter with confidence. The only firm conclusion our model provides is that if the patterns from 2000-19 do continue to apply in 2022-23, Russia’s energy weapon will prove highly potent. With electricity prices near their current levels, around 147,000 more people (4.8% more than average) would die in a typical winter than if those costs returned to the average from 2015-19. Given mild temperatures—using the warmest winter during the past 20 years for each country—this figure would fall to 79,000, a 2.7% increase. And with frigid ones, using each country’s coldest winter since 2000, it would climb to 185,000, a rise of 6.0%.
The size of this effect varies by country. Italy has the most predicted deaths, owing to its soaring electricity costs and big, ageing population. The model does not account for Italy’s generous new subsidies for households, which focus on poorer users. These transfers would need to be very effective to offset such high prices. Estonia and Finland also do poorly on a per-person basis. At the opposite extreme, France and Britain, which have imposed price ceilings, fare reasonably well, and predicted mortality in Spain is nearly flat. In Austria, which will cap electricity prices up to a modest usage limit at a bargain €0.10 per kilowatt-hour, deaths are expected to fall.

For Europe as a whole, the model’s estimate of deaths caused by energy-price increases surpasses the number of soldiers thought to have died in Ukraine, at 25,000-30,000 for each side. A comparison using years of life lost would yield a different result, since shells and bullets mostly kill the young whereas cold preys on the old. In addition, at least 6,500 civilians have died in the war. Given Russia’s attacks on Ukrainian infrastructure, the European country in which the cold will claim the most lives this winter will surely be Ukraine.
The damage Mr Putin is inflicting on Ukraine is immense. The cost for its allies is less visible. And yet, as winter sets in, their commitment will be measured not only in aid and arms, but also in lives.
https://www.economist.com/interactive/g ... kraine-has

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by lpm » Fri Nov 25, 2022 7:01 pm

A comparison using years of life lost would yield a different result
This is a massive understatement.

As a weapon of war, killing the elderly in your enemy's country doesn't get you very far. Besides which, Russia's enemies managed to kill plenty of their own elderly by f.cking up Covid lockdowns, imposing austerity, destroying healthcare for political reasons etc. Pretty clearly the Conservatives kill more Brits than Putin does.
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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Sat Nov 26, 2022 9:17 am

EACLucifer wrote:
Fri Nov 25, 2022 1:48 pm
sTeamTraen wrote:
Wed Nov 23, 2022 4:34 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Wed Nov 23, 2022 12:58 pm
More attacks. Civilian targets again. Electricity and water, too; the goal is clearly to kill civilians directly and indirectly, and to displace them.

We have solutions to this problem, we need to stop tiptoeing around a failing military that daren't touch NATO and supply the right tools for the job.
A couple of weeks ago, Macron made a good speech in which he explicitly mentioned the idea of direct Western help to keep the electricity grid working. France and Germany have big infrastructure companies like Alstom, Legrand, Siemens, etc, which can do this. Siemens, in particular, has a bunch of people presumably on light duties since they left Russia back in March. I don't suppose we will get daily updates about them, but I wonder what, if anything, was set in motion after that speech.
Just seen mention of France sending a hundred "powerful" generators to assist, so clearly they are doing something.
Further update.

"South Korea - 20 generators 450-500 kW
Denmark - A truckload of generators arrived for 2-nd time in a week
France - 100 powerful generators
USA - (USAID) 80 generators
Germany - 100 generators"

That said, while it is very helpful to send generators, blankets, water purifying equipment and so on, the ultimate cure to the problem is Russia's defeat. Weapons to hit the launching sites used for many of the weapons used to attack Ukraine's civilian infrastructure would be a good start.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Woodchopper » Sat Nov 26, 2022 9:28 am

Ukrainian troops fire thousands of explosive shells at Russian targets every day, using high-tech cannons supplied by the United States and its allies. But those weapons are burning out after months of overuse, or being damaged or destroyed in combat, and dozens have been taken off the battlefield for repairs, according to U.S. and Ukrainian officials.

A third of the roughly 350 Western-made howitzers donated to Kyiv are out of action at any given time, according to U.S. defense officials and others familiar with Ukraine’s defense needs.

Swapping out a howitzer’s barrel, which can be 20 feet long and weigh thousands of pounds, is beyond the capability of soldiers in the field and has become a priority for the Pentagon’s European Command, which has set up a repair facility in Poland.

[…]

The effort to repair the weapons in Poland, which has not previously been reported, began in recent months. The condition of Ukraine’s weapons is a closely held matter among U.S. military officials, who declined to discuss details of the program.

“With every capability we give to Ukraine, and those our allies and partners provide, we work to ensure that they have the right maintenance sustainment packages to support those capabilities over time,” Lt. Cmdr. Daniel Day, a spokesman for the U.S. European Command, said in a statement.

[…]

Ukrainian forces have also received 155-millimeter shells from countries besides the United States. Some of those shells and propellant charges had not been tested for use in certain howitzers, and the Ukrainian soldiers have found out in combat that some of them can wear out barrels more quickly, according to U.S. military officials.

After the damaged howitzers arrive in Poland, maintenance crews can change out the barrels and make other repairs. Ukrainian officials have said they would like to bring those maintenance sites closer to the front lines, so that the guns can be returned to combat sooner, the U.S. officials and other people said.

[…]

The work on the howitzers is overseen by U.S. European Command in Stuttgart, Germany, but may soon fall under a new command that will focus on training and equipping Ukrainian troops.

“It’s not altogether surprising that there are maintenance issues with these weapons,” said Rob Lee, a military analyst at the Foreign Policy Research Institute. “They didn’t get a full training package for them and then were thrown into the fight, so you are going to get a lot of wear and tear.”

The Western artillery weapons provided to Ukraine, in the form of rocket launchers and howitzers, have sharply different maintenance needs. Of the former, HIMARS vehicles need little work to keep firing their ammunition, which is contained in pods of pre-loaded tubes. But howitzers are essentially large firearms that are reloaded with ammunition — shells weighing about 90 pounds each — and fired many hundreds or thousands of times, which eventually takes a toll on the cannon’s internal parts.

The nature of the artillery duels, in which Ukrainian crews often fire from extremely long distances to make Russian counterattacks more difficult, places additional strain on the howitzers. The larger propellant charges required to do that produce much more heat and can cause gun barrels to wear out more quickly.

Currently, Ukrainian forces are firing 2,000 to 4,000 artillery shells a day, a number frequently outmatched by the Russians. Over time, that pace has caused problems for Ukrainian soldiers using M777 howitzers, such as shells not traveling as far or as accurately.

Some of the issues can be traced, in part, to the howitzer’s design. Built largely with titanium, which is lighter than steel but just as strong, the weapon is easier to move on the battlefield and quicker to set up than earlier guns — a clear advantage for the United States when it began using the M777 in Iraq and Afghanistan in the early 2000s.

In those wars, unlike in Ukraine, the M777 was generally used to fire small numbers of shells in support of troops.

The United States did, however, get a glimpse of what might happen to Ukraine’s M777 howitzers five years ago, during the campaign to defeat the Islamic State.

In 2017, a Marine artillery battery from Camp Lejeune deployed to Syria with four M777 guns and fired more than 23,000 rounds of 155-millimeter ammunition in five months of supporting combat operations in Raqqa — nearly 55 times what a typical battery of that size would normally fire in a year of peacetime training.

As a result, three of the battery’s howitzers had to be removed because of excessive wear over the course of that deployment and were replaced with guns held in reserve in Kuwait.

When one of the howitzers went down, the others simply fired more, an option the Ukrainians are forced to choose daily.
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/11/25/us/u ... kdown.html

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Sat Nov 26, 2022 10:59 am

More howitzers sent = less strain on each howitzer
More Russian artillery and shells destroyed (so more long range munitions etc) = less strain on each howitzer

It's one reason I'm frustrated with the attitude to aid taken by the west. At present, Ukraine has the volunteers, but not enough materiel to threaten every front. Their advantage in willing combatants is thus hampered by lack of heavy equipment. If Russia were forced to defend everywhere, there would be much greater chance of achieving a rupture of the front like that in the Balakliya/Kupyans'k/Izium offensive.

And that would in turn mean the war would end sooner. Aside from every humanitarian consideration which supports that approach, it would likely mean less aid needed overall, as there would be less of this grinding, attritional warfare.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Woodchopper » Sat Nov 26, 2022 2:00 pm


In Ukraine, the kind of European war thought inconceivable is chewing up the modest stockpiles of artillery, ammunition and air defenses of what some in NATO call Europe’s “bonsai armies,” after the tiny Japanese trees. Even the mighty United States has only limited stocks of the weapons the Ukrainians want and need, and Washington is unwilling to divert key weapons from delicate regions like Taiwan and Korea, where China and North Korea are constantly testing the limits.

Now, nine months into the war, the West’s fundamental unpreparedness has set off a mad scramble to supply Ukraine with what it needs while also replenishing NATO stockpiles. As both sides burn through weaponry and ammunition at a pace not seen since World War II, the competition to keep arsenals flush has become a critical front that could prove decisive to Ukraine’s effort.

The amount of artillery being used is staggering, NATO officials say. In Afghanistan, NATO forces might have fired even 300 artillery rounds a day and had no real worries about air defense. But Ukraine can fire thousands of rounds daily and remains desperate for air defense against Russian missiles and Iranian-made drones.

“A day in Ukraine is a month or more in Afghanistan,” said Camille Grand, a defense expert at the European Council on Foreign Relations, who until recently was NATO’s assistant secretary general for defense investment.

Last summer in the Donbas region, the Ukrainians were firing 6,000 to 7,000 artillery rounds each day, a senior NATO official said. The Russians were firing 40,000 to 50,000 rounds per day.

By comparison, the United States produces only 15,000 rounds each month.

So the West is scrambling to find increasingly scarce Soviet-era equipment and ammunition that Ukraine can use now, including S-300 air defense missiles, T-72 tanks and especially Soviet-caliber artillery shells.

The West is also trying to come up with alternative systems, even if they are older, to substitute for shrinking stocks of expensive air-defense missiles and anti-tank Javelins. It is sending strong signals to Western defense industries that longer-term contracts are in the offing — and that more shifts of workers should be employed and older factory lines should be refurbished. It is trying to purchase ammunition from countries like South Korea to “backfill” stocks being sent to Ukraine.

There are even discussions about NATO investing in old factories in the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Bulgaria to restart the manufacturing of Soviet-caliber 152-mm and 122-mm shells for Ukraine’s still largely Soviet-era artillery armory.

But the obstacles are as myriad as the solutions being pursued.

NATO countries — often with great fanfare — have provided Ukraine some advanced Western artillery, which uses NATO-standard 155-mm shells. But NATO systems are rarely certified to use rounds produced by other NATO countries, which often make the shells differently. (That is a way for arms manufacturers to ensure that they can sell ammunition for their guns, the way printer manufacturers make their money on ink cartridges.)

And then there is the problem of legal export controls, which govern whether guns and ammunition sold to one country can be sent to another one at war. This is the reason the Swiss, claiming neutrality, refused Germany permission to export to Ukraine needed antiaircraft ammunition made by Switzerland and sold to Germany. Italy has a similar restriction on arms exports.

One NATO official described the mixed bag of systems that Ukraine must now cope with as “NATO’s petting zoo,” given the prevalence of animal names for weapons like the Gepard (German for cheetah) and the surface-to-air missile system called the Crotale (French for rattlesnake). So resupply is difficult, as is maintenance.

[…]

In February, when the war in Ukraine began, stockpiles for many nations were only about half of what they were supposed to be, the NATO official said, and there had been little progress in creating weapons that could be used interchangeably by NATO countries.

Even within the European Union, only 18 percent of defense expenditures by nations are cooperative.

For NATO countries that have given large amounts of weapons to Ukraine, especially frontline states like Poland and the Baltics, the burden of replacing them has proved heavy.

The French, for instance, have provided some advanced weapons and created a 200-million- euro fund ($208 million) for Ukraine to buy arms made in France. But France has already given at least 18 modern Caesar howitzers to Ukraine — about 20 percent of all of its existing artillery — and is reluctant to provide more.

The European Union has approved €3.1 billion ($3.2 billion) to repay member states for what they provide to Ukraine, but that fund, the European Peace Facility, is nearly 90 percent depleted.

In total, NATO countries have so far provided some $40 billion in weaponry to Ukraine, roughly the size of France’s annual defense budget.

Smaller countries have exhausted their potential, another NATO official said, with 20 of its 30 members “pretty tapped out.” But the remaining 10 can still provide more, he suggested, especially larger allies. That would include France, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands.

NATO’s secretary general, Jens Stoltenberg, has advised the alliance — including, pointedly, Germany — that NATO guidelines requiring members to keep stockpiles should not be a pretext to limit arms exports to Ukraine. But it is also true that Germany and France, like the United States, want to calibrate the weapons Ukraine gets, to prevent escalation and direct attacks on Russia.

[…]

The Ukrainians want at least four systems that the West has not provided and is unlikely to: long-range surface-to-surface missiles known as ATACMS that could hit Russia and Crimea; Western fighter jets; Western tanks; and a lot more advanced air defense, said Mark F. Cancian, a former White House weapons strategist who is now a senior adviser at Washington’s Center for Strategic and International Studies.

The ATACMS, with a range of some 190 kilometers, or about 118 miles, will not be given for fear they could hit Russia; the tanks and fighter jets are just too complicated, requiring a year or more to train in how to use and maintain. As for air defense, Mr. Cancian said, NATO and the United States deactivated most of their short-range air defense after the Cold War, and there is little to go around. Producing more can take up to two years.

Maintenance is key, but there are clever answers for relatively simpler equipment, like the M-777 howitzer given to Ukraine. With the right parts, a Ukrainian engineer can link up to an American artillery officer in Fort Sill, Okla., and get talked through maintenance over Zoom.

Ukraine has also proved adaptable. Its forces are known inside NATO as “the MacGyver Army,” a reference to an old television series in which the hero is inventive and improvisational with whatever comes to hand.

To shell Russian positions at Snake Island, for instance, the Ukrainians put Caesars, with a 40-kilometer range, on barges and towed them out 10 kilometers to hit the island, which was 50 kilometers away, astonishing the French. Ukraine also sank the Moskva, the flagship of the Russian Black Sea Fleet, with its own adapted missiles, and has built drones that can attack ships at sea.

American officials insist that the U.S. military still has enough matériel to continue supplying Ukraine and defend U.S. interests elsewhere.

[…]

Washington is also looking at older, cheaper alternatives like giving Ukraine anti-tank TOW missiles, which are in plentiful supply, instead of Javelins, and Hawk surface-to-air missiles instead of newer versions. But officials are increasingly pushing Ukraine to be more efficient and not, for example, fire a missile that costs $150,000 at a drone that costs $20,000.

Already, some weapons are running low.

As of September, the U.S. military had a limited number of 155-mm artillery rounds in its stockpiles, and limited numbers of guided rockets, rocket launchers, howitzers, Javelins and Stingers, according to an analysis by Mr. Cancian.

The shortage in 155-mm artillery shells “is probably the big one that has the planners most concerned,” Mr. Cancian said.

“If you want to increase production capability of 155 shells,” he said, “it’s going to be probably four to five years before you start seeing them come out the other end.”
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/11/26/worl ... raine.html

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by plodder » Sat Nov 26, 2022 2:55 pm

It’s going to be interesting to see how Ukraine are eventually required to pay off the cost of all this. My guess is a Baghdad style rebuild where politically connected contractors fill their boots, followed by mass privatisations to western investors.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Bird on a Fire » Sat Nov 26, 2022 4:46 pm

plodder wrote:
Sat Nov 26, 2022 2:55 pm
It’s going to be interesting to see how Ukraine are eventually required to pay off the cost of all this. My guess is a Baghdad style rebuild where politically connected contractors fill their boots, followed by mass privatisations to western investors.
How are your political connections looking?
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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by plodder » Sat Nov 26, 2022 6:04 pm

Bird on a Fire wrote:
Sat Nov 26, 2022 4:46 pm
plodder wrote:
Sat Nov 26, 2022 2:55 pm
It’s going to be interesting to see how Ukraine are eventually required to pay off the cost of all this. My guess is a Baghdad style rebuild where politically connected contractors fill their boots, followed by mass privatisations to western investors.
How are your political connections looking?
I don't doubt that throughout the industry our boss's boss's boss's boss's are ingratiating themselves.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Sat Nov 26, 2022 6:23 pm

Woodchopper wrote:
Sat Nov 26, 2022 2:00 pm
To shell Russian positions at Snake Island, for instance, the Ukrainians put Caesars, with a 40-kilometer range, on barges and towed them out 10 kilometers to hit the island, which was 50 kilometers away, astonishing the French.
[/quote]

I'm extremely confident they did not do this. Snake Island is only about 35km from the shore. There is also footage of a gun-howitzer firing in the direction of Snake Island but it's not a CAESAR - it was the conceptually similar Ukrainian Bohdana.

This approach simply is not practical, as the fire control computers of a towed or self-propelled artillery piece are not designed to accomodate firing from a moving platform in a way that naval guns do.

Other strikes on Snake Island were conducted with MLRS, with BM-21, BM-27 and BM-30 all easily having the range required.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Woodchopper » Sat Nov 26, 2022 7:10 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Sat Nov 26, 2022 6:23 pm
Woodchopper wrote:
Sat Nov 26, 2022 2:00 pm
To shell Russian positions at Snake Island, for instance, the Ukrainians put Caesars, with a 40-kilometer range, on barges and towed them out 10 kilometers to hit the island, which was 50 kilometers away, astonishing the French.

I'm extremely confident they did not do this. Snake Island is only about 35km from the shore. There is also footage of a gun-howitzer firing in the direction of Snake Island but it's not a CAESAR - it was the conceptually similar Ukrainian Bohdana.

This approach simply is not practical, as the fire control computers of a towed or self-propelled artillery piece are not designed to accomodate firing from a moving platform in a way that naval guns do.

Other strikes on Snake Island were conducted with MLRS, with BM-21, BM-27 and BM-30 all easily having the range required.
I agree. I’ve seen some speculation that a barge may have been used to transport a CAESAR from one land location to another (but not used as a floating fire platform).

It’s also possible that details were altered deliberately to manage what information Moscow can read.

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EACLucifer
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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Sat Nov 26, 2022 8:00 pm

Woodchopper wrote:
Sat Nov 26, 2022 7:10 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Sat Nov 26, 2022 6:23 pm
Woodchopper wrote:
Sat Nov 26, 2022 2:00 pm
To shell Russian positions at Snake Island, for instance, the Ukrainians put Caesars, with a 40-kilometer range, on barges and towed them out 10 kilometers to hit the island, which was 50 kilometers away, astonishing the French.

I'm extremely confident they did not do this. Snake Island is only about 35km from the shore. There is also footage of a gun-howitzer firing in the direction of Snake Island but it's not a CAESAR - it was the conceptually similar Ukrainian Bohdana.

This approach simply is not practical, as the fire control computers of a towed or self-propelled artillery piece are not designed to accomodate firing from a moving platform in a way that naval guns do.

Other strikes on Snake Island were conducted with MLRS, with BM-21, BM-27 and BM-30 all easily having the range required.
I agree. I’ve seen some speculation that a barge may have been used to transport a CAESAR from one land location to another (but not used as a floating fire platform).

It’s also possible that details were altered deliberately to manage what information Moscow can read.
Or altered accidentally as they are passed between various officials, some of whom haven't got any knowledge of the subject matter. But it's worth noting when it comes to press reports that this kind of thing makes it in.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by bjn » Sat Nov 26, 2022 11:10 pm

Belarusian foreign minister has just died suddenly. No indication yet as to whether it was falling out of a window natural causes, or natural causes natural causes.

https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/be ... 022-11-26/

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Woodchopper » Mon Nov 28, 2022 9:53 am

I've been mentioning supply problems for Taiwan as a possibility. Seems like support for Ukraine may have exacerbated existing supply chain problems.
U.S. government and congressional officials fear the conflict in Ukraine is exacerbating a nearly $19 billion backlog of weapons bound for Taiwan, further delaying efforts to arm the island as tensions with China escalate.

The U.S. has pumped billions of dollars of weapons into Ukraine since the Russian invasion in February, taxing the capacity of the government and defense industry to keep up with a sudden demand to arm Kyiv in a conflict that isn’t expected to end soon. The flow of weapons to Ukraine is now running up against the longer-term demands of a U.S. strategy to arm Taiwan to help it defend itself against a possible invasion by China, according to congressional and government officials familiar with the matter.

The backlog of deliveries, which was more than $14 billion last December, has grown to $18.7 billion, according to congressional officials and others familiar with the matter. Included in the backlog are an order made in December 2015 for 208 Javelin antitank weapons and a separate one at the same time for 215 surface-to-air Stinger missiles. None of them have arrived on the island, according to congressional sources and people familiar with the matter.

[...]

“Taiwan would like to request that the weapons the U.S. sells to Taiwan be delivered as scheduled,” Gen. Wang Shin-lung, the vice minister for armaments at Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense, said last month.

Neither the State Department nor Pentagon would acknowledge the backlog or provide details on which weapons to Taiwan might have been delayed, but the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission warned of delays to weapons such as Stingers and Paladin self-propelled howitzer artillery.

“The diversion of existing stocks of weapons and munitions to Ukraine and pandemic-related supply-chain issues have exacerbated a sizable backlog in the delivery of weapons already approved for sale to Taiwan, undermining the island’s readiness,” the commission, a government auditing and monitoring body mandated by Congress more than 20 years ago, said in a report this month.

U.S. officials acknowledged delays to arms deliveries to Taiwan, but say that those purchases are all new off the production line, while the Stingers and Javelins headed to Ukraine come from existing stockpiles within the U.S. arsenal. “We continue to diligently work to provide capabilities to Taiwan as fast as possible while also making sure Ukraine can defend itself against Russian aggression,” Sabrina Singh, a Pentagon spokeswoman, said in a statement.

In May, when asked about Taiwan’s announced plans to look at alternatives to the delayed howitzers, John Kirby, then a Pentagon spokesman, said Ukraine wasn’t the cause of the backlog. Mr. Kirby said deliveries to Ukraine were drawn from existing stockpiles, which “is a different method of providing military articles than what is being provided to Taiwan.”

Executives at Lockheed Martin Corp., Boeing Co. and other defense companies say pandemic-driven supply-chain problems have set back production for many systems and that they have struggled to keep up with orders even before Russia’s invasion of Ukraine boosted demand.

The Ukraine war, even if it isn’t the primary reason for the backlog, is still an aggravating factor. Doug Bush, the Army’s chief acquisition official, said that while no single delay could be connected to Ukraine, the war does affect “prioritization” in the short term.

[...]

The backlog has raised concern that Washington is running out of time to help defend Taiwan against China adequately, because Taiwan, unlike Ukraine, can’t be effectively armed after an invasion. The backlog highlights the challenges the American industrial base faces in producing enough armaments to protect the U.S. and its allies.

Rep. Michael McCaul (R., Texas) said in a statement that he would be working with the House Armed Services Committee on addressing the industrial-base issues contributing to the delays. “In some cases, we have more than a three-year backlog of foreign military sales that I signed off on in my position that have yet to be delivered into Taiwan,” said Mr. McCaul, currently the ranking member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. “As we have seen in Ukraine, it’s far better to get the weapons prior to an invasion than after.”

Officials at the State and Defense departments and at the Defense Security Cooperation Agency declined to give details on which weapons for Taiwan are backlogged. Frustration over a lack of clarity on the issue prompted House Republicans to introduce legislation that would require the Biden administration to provide details on major arms sales to Taiwan.

[...]

Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin earlier this year created an ad hoc team to review issues that hold up foreign military sales, but officials haven’t yet provided details on what progress they have made. Another Pentagon ad hoc group that was specifically assembled to look at Taiwan arm sales is reviewing ways to expedite them, officials said.

[...]

The U.S. military is seeking to step up arms production to replenish its stockpiles, and that could speed deliveries, said Mr. Bush, the Army acquisition official. “If the Army in certain areas ends up with more capacity, it will allow us to move faster for everyone,” he said.

The sales of arms to Taiwan since 2019 include weapons also being sent to Ukraine, including Stinger missiles, Javelins, High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, or Himars, and howitzers. Taipei signed a contract in March for Harpoon antiship missiles, but won’t get them until at least 2026, officials said.

Lockheed Martin and Raytheon Technologies Corp. are expanding production of Stingers, Javelins and Himars. The British arms maker BAE Systems PLC is in talks to restart Howitzer production.

Howitzer artillery systems rely on 155mm shells, the stockpiles of which are dwindling quickly in the U.S. since the war began in Ukraine nine months ago. The U.S. has shipped nearly a million such rounds to Kyiv, according to government records.
https://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-effort ... 1669559116

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Brightonian » Tue Nov 29, 2022 3:23 am

bjn wrote:
Sat Nov 26, 2022 11:10 pm
Belarusian foreign minister has just died suddenly. No indication yet as to whether it was falling out of a window natural causes, or natural causes natural causes.

https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/be ... 022-11-26/
Now Lukashenko is supposedly in fear of his life: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/be ... r-AA14FtjV

Makei, the Belarusian foreign minister, was supposedly poisoned to keep Lukashenko in line. All feels a bit weak to me.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Tue Nov 29, 2022 8:54 am

Brightonian wrote:
Tue Nov 29, 2022 3:23 am
bjn wrote:
Sat Nov 26, 2022 11:10 pm
Belarusian foreign minister has just died suddenly. No indication yet as to whether it was falling out of a window natural causes, or natural causes natural causes.

https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/be ... 022-11-26/
Now Lukashenko is supposedly in fear of his life: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/be ... r-AA14FtjV

Makei, the Belarusian foreign minister, was supposedly poisoned to keep Lukashenko in line. All feels a bit weak to me.
There's been an increase in Russian tanks and, notably, air defence moving into Belarus lately. Tanks I can understand - the Russian system relies on using existing troops for training recruits, a system that cannot really cope when the existing troops are all either in combat or lying face down in a mud filled crater just east of Bakhmut. The tanks are thus going so Belarusian troops can train the newly mobilised Russians. Air defence might be for the same reason, but god knows at this point. It's possible Russia's anticipating possible strikes against them in Belarus.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Woodchopper » Tue Nov 29, 2022 9:04 am

EACLucifer wrote:
Tue Nov 29, 2022 8:54 am
Brightonian wrote:
Tue Nov 29, 2022 3:23 am
bjn wrote:
Sat Nov 26, 2022 11:10 pm
Belarusian foreign minister has just died suddenly. No indication yet as to whether it was falling out of a window natural causes, or natural causes natural causes.

https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/be ... 022-11-26/
Now Lukashenko is supposedly in fear of his life: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/be ... r-AA14FtjV

Makei, the Belarusian foreign minister, was supposedly poisoned to keep Lukashenko in line. All feels a bit weak to me.
There's been an increase in Russian tanks and, notably, air defence moving into Belarus lately. Tanks I can understand - the Russian system relies on using existing troops for training recruits, a system that cannot really cope when the existing troops are all either in combat or lying face down in a mud filled crater just east of Bakhmut. The tanks are thus going so Belarusian troops can train the newly mobilised Russians. Air defence might be for the same reason, but god knows at this point. It's possible Russia's anticipating possible strikes against them in Belarus.
Russia seems, in general, to move men and equipment around a lot. I'm not too sure why. It could be a way to avoid troops getting too familiar with each other or the local population (which might mitigate corruption or even the risk of a coup).

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