by Larry Johnson
I read this stuff so you don’t have to. Shout out to Gary in Austrailia who flagged this tripe to me. Emma Ashford and Kelly A. Grieco are two chick academics who do not know a damn thing about military operations and capabilities. Geez. This article is just another Dumb and Dumber episode with a dash of Ground Hog Day tossed in.
Emma, who is is a Senior Fellow at the Stimson Center and an Adjunct Assistant Professor at Georgetown University, and Kelly, who is a Senior Fellow at the Stimson Center, a Nonresident Fellow with the Marine Corps University’s Brute Krulak Center for Innovation and Future Warfare and an Adjunct Professor at Georgetown University, should be banned from the classroom. Their article in Foreign Affairs, How Ukraine Can Win Through Defense — A New Strategy Can Protect Kyiv and Stop Moscow From Winning, is another desperate attempt to make chocolate mousse out of horse shit. Can’t be done and it certainly is not palatable.
What is it with the two journals that are supposed to be the guiding lights on U.S. foreign policy? I am referring to Foreign Policy and Foreign Affairs. Foreign Policy put out the delusional piece this month by Rose Gottemoeller and Michael Ryan that I shredded on Tuesday (Ukraine Has a Path to Victory). But Foreign Affairs is the biggest offender. In December it published Dmytro Kuleba‘s plea for help, There Is a Path to Victory in Ukraine. Foreign Affairs now follows up with the article by Ashford and Grieco. Nothing says panic in Washington like a spate of “Save Ukraine” articles in these two preeminent journals. I think both journals would be better off running a series based on Elisabeth Kübler-Ross writings on the Five Stages of Grief.
Anyway, back to the ladies. Mademoiselles Ashford and Grieco believe that Ukraine can stave off defeat by building defenses and doing to Putin what Putin did to Ukraine in its ill-fated offensive. They still fail to grasp that Russia’s victory was not just a function of building robust defensive lines. Russia had air superiority, glide bombs, hypersonic missiles and an ample supply of artillery shells, not to mention copious amounts of land mines. They write:
If Ukraine can defend the territory it controls in the coming months by using capabilities such as antitank mines and concrete fortifications, it can deny Russia a path to complete victory and perhaps even open the door for negotiations. Putin evidently believes that time is on his side; a strong, sustainable Ukrainian
…defense would prove him wrong.
These gals clearly don’t understand that Vladimir Putin is a Rolling Stones fan:
Putin has more than time. He has an industrial base that is cranking out artillery rounds as a rate that the United States and Europe
could not match in five years. Putin has a robust military that is recruiting 500,000 volunteers a year while Ukraine is still struggling to come up with a plan to scarf up new cannon fodder. Russia has the luxury of being able to train new recruits for 12 months, while Ukraine, if it can drag some unsuspecting souls out of discos and grocery stores, can send their folks off to Europe for four weeks of learning how to put on a uniform.
And Russia is not sitting on its ass trying to count navel lint in its belly button. It is aggressively attacking Ukraine’s military industry sites and warehouses, with devastating effect.
Let’s give the ladies credit. They do have a moment of lucidity:
Despite the apparent stalemate on the battlefield, it is unlikely Putin would agree to a cease-fire until after the 2024 U.S. presidential election, which he surely hopes will deliver him a Trump presidency and thus a better deal. He is also undoubtedly aware of the grim math of land warfare: Russia has a larger military-age population to draw from than Ukraine and a stronger industrial base. On paper, time is on his side.
Thank you Captain Obvious for this no shit analysis. That moment of clarity is blown away by this strawman: