The Invasion of Ukraine

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Imrael
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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Imrael » Sun Feb 19, 2023 9:35 am

Good article describing how Russia and Ukraine are fighting different wars
I likes the articie, although I think it overdoes the "modern-ness" of total warfare and economic warfare. That is basically what Hendy V was up to when brought to battle at Agincourt/Azincourt.

I think the idea of warfre avoiding damaging civilians arose from the C17 conflicts like the 30 years war, which was brutal enough to give people pause. And even in Europe war on civilians has never been off the table.

My strictly amateur take is that what you do will depend on your political aims in the struggle. Russia's original aims probably had an element of getting economic advantage from capturing a stronger economy (although Ukraines economic strength can get exagerated). Now thats largely off the table, but I guess they want
1. A victory for home consumption
2. To continue to cause fear in neighbouring countries - in which context a certain level of savagery is not an aberration but a strategic tool.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Woodchopper » Sun Feb 19, 2023 10:08 am

Imrael wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 9:35 am
Good article describing how Russia and Ukraine are fighting different wars
I likes the articie, although I think it overdoes the "modern-ness" of total warfare and economic warfare. That is basically what Hendy V was up to when brought to battle at Agincourt/Azincourt.

I think the idea of warfre avoiding damaging civilians arose from the C17 conflicts like the 30 years war, which was brutal enough to give people pause. And even in Europe war on civilians has never been off the table.
He is though referring to "military thought", for example what's taught at staff colleges. Of course its possible to find earlier examples of how strategic civilian sectors were targeted, for example Sherman's march to the sea. But as far as I can see Freedman's argument is that this wasn't a central feature of how armed forces believed they should operate. By the second world war, strategic bombing had a central role in military thought.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Sun Feb 19, 2023 6:31 pm

Russian troops going many months without pay

I wonder how much of it is the Russian government trying to save money in difficult economic circumstances, and I also wonder how much of it is incompetent bureaucracy, to the point they don't even know who's in their army.

And I expect at least some of it is people exploiting the latter point and diverting the wages budget for dachas, yacht funds, etc.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Woodchopper » Sun Feb 19, 2023 6:56 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 6:31 pm
Russian troops going many months without pay

I wonder how much of it is the Russian government trying to save money in difficult economic circumstances, and I also wonder how much of it is incompetent bureaucracy, to the point they don't even know who's in their army.

And I expect at least some of it is people exploiting the latter point and diverting the wages budget for dachas, yacht funds, etc.
They have a new database, so that may solve some administrative problems: https://twitter.com/chriso_wiki/status/ ... mm_50J_NEQ

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Sun Feb 19, 2023 7:43 pm

Woodchopper wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 6:56 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 6:31 pm
Russian troops going many months without pay

I wonder how much of it is the Russian government trying to save money in difficult economic circumstances, and I also wonder how much of it is incompetent bureaucracy, to the point they don't even know who's in their army.

And I expect at least some of it is people exploiting the latter point and diverting the wages budget for dachas, yacht funds, etc.
They have a new database, so that may solve some administrative problems: https://twitter.com/chriso_wiki/status/ ... mm_50J_NEQ
Some, perhaps. It would be very charitable to believe that pay not reaching troops is entirely accidental, though.

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jimbob
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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by jimbob » Sun Feb 19, 2023 9:51 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 6:31 pm
Russian troops going many months without pay

I wonder how much of it is the Russian government trying to save money in difficult economic circumstances, and I also wonder how much of it is incompetent bureaucracy, to the point they don't even know who's in their army.

And I expect at least some of it is people exploiting the latter point and diverting the wages budget for dachas, yacht funds, etc.
What could go wrong with large number of fairly unwilling conscripts not getting pay and also knowing that they'll go to units suffering high casualty rates?
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by jimbob » Sun Feb 19, 2023 9:54 pm

jimbob wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 9:51 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 6:31 pm
Russian troops going many months without pay

I wonder how much of it is the Russian government trying to save money in difficult economic circumstances, and I also wonder how much of it is incompetent bureaucracy, to the point they don't even know who's in their army.

And I expect at least some of it is people exploiting the latter point and diverting the wages budget for dachas, yacht funds, etc.
What could go wrong with large number of fairly unwilling conscripts not getting pay and also knowing that they'll go to units suffering high casualty rates?
Different source but also a good thread.

https://twitter.com/VolodyaTretyak/stat ... 29088?s=20
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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EACLucifer
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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Mon Feb 20, 2023 10:05 am

Biden's visiting Kyiv, on the ninth anniversary of the Revolution of Dignity.

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Woodchopper
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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Woodchopper » Mon Feb 20, 2023 10:58 am

EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 7:43 pm
Woodchopper wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 6:56 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 6:31 pm
Russian troops going many months without pay

I wonder how much of it is the Russian government trying to save money in difficult economic circumstances, and I also wonder how much of it is incompetent bureaucracy, to the point they don't even know who's in their army.

And I expect at least some of it is people exploiting the latter point and diverting the wages budget for dachas, yacht funds, etc.
They have a new database, so that may solve some administrative problems: https://twitter.com/chriso_wiki/status/ ... mm_50J_NEQ
Some, perhaps. It would be very charitable to believe that pay not reaching troops is entirely accidental, though.
Yes, likely the pay was diverted by corrupt officials. A database may help solve that kind of administrative problem.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by jimbob » Mon Feb 20, 2023 11:20 am

There is an incentive to have imaginary conscripts. They won't complain.
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Mon Feb 20, 2023 11:36 am

Woodchopper wrote:
Mon Feb 20, 2023 10:58 am
EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 7:43 pm
Woodchopper wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 6:56 pm


They have a new database, so that may solve some administrative problems: https://twitter.com/chriso_wiki/status/ ... mm_50J_NEQ
Some, perhaps. It would be very charitable to believe that pay not reaching troops is entirely accidental, though.
Yes, likely the pay was diverted by corrupt officials. A database may help solve that kind of administrative problem.
As long as the people paid to run the database aren't the ones doing the corruption, of course.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by dyqik » Mon Feb 20, 2023 2:52 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Mon Feb 20, 2023 11:36 am
Woodchopper wrote:
Mon Feb 20, 2023 10:58 am
EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 7:43 pm


Some, perhaps. It would be very charitable to believe that pay not reaching troops is entirely accidental, though.
Yes, likely the pay was diverted by corrupt officials. A database may help solve that kind of administrative problem.
As long as the people paid to run the database aren't the ones doing the corruption, of course.
Or the people who supplied the data sources for the database. Or the people supplying the new data to be added to the database.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Woodchopper » Mon Feb 20, 2023 3:11 pm

dyqik wrote:
Mon Feb 20, 2023 2:52 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Mon Feb 20, 2023 11:36 am
Woodchopper wrote:
Mon Feb 20, 2023 10:58 am


Yes, likely the pay was diverted by corrupt officials. A database may help solve that kind of administrative problem.
As long as the people paid to run the database aren't the ones doing the corruption, of course.
Or the people who supplied the data sources for the database. Or the people supplying the new data to be added to the database.
It’s corruption all the way down.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by IvanV » Mon Feb 20, 2023 4:50 pm

Woodchopper wrote:
Mon Feb 20, 2023 10:58 am
EACLucifer wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 7:43 pm
Woodchopper wrote:
Sun Feb 19, 2023 6:56 pm
They have a new database, so that may solve some administrative problems: https://twitter.com/chriso_wiki/status/ ... mm_50J_NEQ
Some, perhaps. It would be very charitable to believe that pay not reaching troops is entirely accidental, though.
Yes, likely the pay was diverted by corrupt officials. A database may help solve that kind of administrative problem.
There's an instructive section in Duflo and Banerjee's book Poor Economics. The story they tell is about the Indian health service. But a colleague implemented the same thing in the South Sudan education service. And it has happened in many other less developed countries and sectors.

So foreign consultant turns up in ldc in the admin of a public service with problems. Consultant quickly observes poor work attendance, incompetent payroll system, phantom and duplicate workers being paid, etc. So foreign consultant sets up competent admin system with proper payroll database, and a system of detecting and recording of workers in attendance at their jobs, etc. If consultant is BigAccountsCo then, it's a complex system requiring big computing power. If it's my friend wording in South Sudan, then it's a simple, easy to maintain, spreadsheet that will run on a 10-yr-old reconditioned PCs, with a macro to run the monthly payroll. So they turn it on, and very quickly they purge all the phantom and duplicate employees. And very quickly workers realise they have to turn up and work to be paid, so worker attendance suddenly becomes excellent.

But foreign consultant goes home, and after a couple of months, things seem to be relapsing to the old ways. Workers have worked out how they can be in attendance and working on the system, but not actually there, through conspiracy with others. New ways of conspiring to get phantom and duplicate workers onto the system are worked out and start to spread through it. And after a year or so, it's no different from before.

Because it was never the case that the local people couldn't set up a fit-for-purpose worker database and attendance system, if they wanted to. It is a very obvious thing and very simple to do. They just had no interest in doing so, right to the top. The whole point was that the place where the power lay had a vested interest in how things were, and a network of influence through the organisation to maintain the subversion of any such system. And so you give them the nice new system. But the place where the power and influence are, as soon as you are out of the way, subverts the system once again, and reawakens their network of influence to conspire to keep it like that, and operate it.

Corruption is very much about people with power and networks of influence. Combating it require disrupting those networks of influence and centres of corrupt power. A database and admin system is not adequate, unless those operating it have greater power than those subverting it, and sufficient influence to destroy their networks of influence that they implement their corruption through.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Mon Feb 20, 2023 5:40 pm

IvanV wrote:
Mon Feb 20, 2023 4:50 pm
Corruption is very much about people with power and networks of influence. Combating it require disrupting those networks of influence and centres of corrupt power. A database and admin system is not adequate, unless those operating it have greater power than those subverting it, and sufficient influence to destroy their networks of influence that they implement their corruption through.
Absolutely, and it's one of the reasons it is so important to prevent corruption from developing in the first place - once the mindset you describe is commonplace, the rot is deep in the wood and very hard to properly eradicate.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by dyqik » Mon Feb 20, 2023 6:12 pm

Woodchopper wrote:
Mon Feb 20, 2023 3:11 pm
dyqik wrote:
Mon Feb 20, 2023 2:52 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Mon Feb 20, 2023 11:36 am


As long as the people paid to run the database aren't the ones doing the corruption, of course.
Or the people who supplied the data sources for the database. Or the people supplying the new data to be added to the database.
It’s corruption all the way down.
I forgot to include "or the people with power to demand "corrections" to the database".

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Tue Feb 21, 2023 10:45 pm

The Slovak Foreign Minister responded to Orban's latest round of idiocy by telling him to "иди на хуй" on social media. If you are wondering what that means, it is the instruction given by the defenders of Snake Island to the Moskva.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by jimbob » Wed Feb 22, 2023 6:10 pm

Looks like Prigozhin is going for broke.
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Wed Feb 22, 2023 6:18 pm

jimbob wrote:
Wed Feb 22, 2023 6:10 pm
Looks like Prigozhin is going for broke.
Yep, I mentioned it on the other thread (because it also had stuff about artillery ammunition shortages on the Russian side) and he's getting a lot more aggressive, and that could be because he's getting more desperate.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by jimbob » Wed Feb 22, 2023 7:58 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Wed Feb 22, 2023 6:18 pm
jimbob wrote:
Wed Feb 22, 2023 6:10 pm
Looks like Prigozhin is going for broke.
Yep, I mentioned it on the other thread (because it also had stuff about artillery ammunition shortages on the Russian side) and he's getting a lot more aggressive, and that could be because he's getting more desperate.
He seems to be trying to appeal directly to the Russian people, which seems like an attempt to directly threaten the whole regime's power structure.

I suspect he's now more of an annoyance than a benefit to Putin.
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Wed Feb 22, 2023 8:13 pm

jimbob wrote:
Wed Feb 22, 2023 7:58 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Wed Feb 22, 2023 6:18 pm
jimbob wrote:
Wed Feb 22, 2023 6:10 pm
Looks like Prigozhin is going for broke.
Yep, I mentioned it on the other thread (because it also had stuff about artillery ammunition shortages on the Russian side) and he's getting a lot more aggressive, and that could be because he's getting more desperate.
He seems to be trying to appeal directly to the Russian people, which seems like an attempt to directly threaten the whole regime's power structure.

I suspect he's now more of an annoyance than a benefit to Putin.
I think that's likely, but it's possible Putin's pleased that it's putting pressure on Shoigu and Gerasimov - Putin* is the sort of person that thinks threatening people makes them work harder and fix structural problems beyond the scope of those threatened - like the sort of idiot that thinks you can change company policy if you yell at the minimum wage call centre worker enough.

*Khuylo!

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by jimbob » Wed Feb 22, 2023 8:20 pm

EACLucifer wrote:
Wed Feb 22, 2023 8:13 pm
jimbob wrote:
Wed Feb 22, 2023 7:58 pm
EACLucifer wrote:
Wed Feb 22, 2023 6:18 pm


Yep, I mentioned it on the other thread (because it also had stuff about artillery ammunition shortages on the Russian side) and he's getting a lot more aggressive, and that could be because he's getting more desperate.
He seems to be trying to appeal directly to the Russian people, which seems like an attempt to directly threaten the whole regime's power structure.

I suspect he's now more of an annoyance than a benefit to Putin.
I think that's likely, but it's possible Putin's pleased that it's putting pressure on Shoigu and Gerasimov - Putin* is the sort of person that thinks threatening people makes them work harder and fix structural problems beyond the scope of those threatened - like the sort of idiot that thinks you can change company policy if you yell at the minimum wage call centre worker enough.

*Khuylo!
Still an attempt to get around the power structure which has Putin at the top. So an attempt to at least indirectly threaten Putin's position
Have you considered stupidity as an explanation

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by Grumble » Wed Feb 22, 2023 8:25 pm

Does Prighozin ever go near buildings with more than one storey and which have windows?
where once I used to scintillate
now I sin till ten past three

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Wed Feb 22, 2023 8:46 pm

Grumble wrote:
Wed Feb 22, 2023 8:25 pm
Does Prighozin ever go near buildings with more than one storey and which have windows?
A lot of people want him dead. Mangushev, one of his horrible lackeys, got shot in the back of the head at point blank range recently. It was sufficiently blatant that even Russia, where people sometimes commit suicide with five bullets from three different guns, acknowledged it was murder - official story seems to be a robbery, but there's allegations medical care was withheld, so it could easily have been an attempt to cut Prigozhin's mob down to size.

Igor Mangushev was a nazi, a war criminal and an all round horrible person, so regardless of the reason, the world is better off without him.

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Re: The Invasion of Ukraine

Post by EACLucifer » Fri Feb 24, 2023 2:29 pm

A couple of things I remember very clearly from this time last year. Two bits of footage really stood out.

First was this footage of a helicopter getting downed over the Kyiv reservoir.

The other was the Pion battery moving through urban traffic

Together, they showed that Ukraine would fight back. That Ukraine could fight back. I remember hearing of fighting at Hostomel Airport, that the Russian attack was contested, was met with fierce resistance. I dared to hope a little, knowing from history what happens when an airborne force meets heavier forces before its supporting ground forces arrive. By the end of the day, the Ukrainian defenders, including mechanised and air assault units and the Georgian Legion, had retaken the airport and prevented the intended Russian followup transports from landing. By the time the Russians eventually took it again, Ukraine's defences were able to hold them, and a month later the attack through Belarus collapsed under Ukrainian pressure. Places like Chernihiv and Sumy held, places where the arrows drawn on the maps of Russian intention ran straight through, as if they weren't even there. In Chernihiv, it was the Ukrainian 1st Tank Brigade's T-64s, moved into the woods to protect them from the initial strikes and to ambush the invaders, and territorial defence units that held off the 41st Combined Arms Army for more than a month. In Sumy, it was just the territorials.

In the south, the Russians had more success. The thing I remember most strongly was the sacrifice made by Vitaly Skakun in an attempt to delay the Russian advance.

This day last year was not the first day of the war, not the first day of the invasion, just the first day of an escalation. Ukraine has already recaptured more than half the territory occupied since that escalation. Ukraine has substantial support from the free world and Russia is struggling. Hopefully what is still occupied can be freed sooner rather than later, including of course all of Crimea and all of the Donbas.

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