Change of Putin’s plan in Ukraine is a significant victory

31 March, 05:14 PM

It is a stepping stone, but one worth chronicling.  The Russian army practically admitted defeat in the declared war on the capture of all of Ukraine, its demilitarization and denazification. 

We have heard the statement of several military men today, in particular Colonel General Aleksandr Fomin, who, in fact, served articles of capitulation to David Arakhamia. Indeed, not total, but on the Kyiv and Chernihiv fronts.

 Overall, it was not news for me. As early as March 25, the head of the Main Operations Directorate of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces, Sergei Rudskoy, formulated a radically different stance of Russia on the war: “Our forces and means will be concentrated on the main thing – the complete liberation of Donbas.”

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That is, to the internationally recognized borders of the Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts. This is, of course, an aggressive position. But this is a completely different stance from the destruction of the Ukrainian state, and the elimination of its military-political leadership.

The Kremlin realized that it was beyond its capacity. This task was halted by the heroic Ukrainian army, and now the war has taken on a different phase. There is even — in my opinion — hope for a truce. Of course, It is not complete peace. Real peace is the return of Crimea and Donbas. This won’t happen overnight.

For now, it is quite realistic to achieve — by diplomatic means — that the Russian army gets out of the rest of the territory of Ukraine and stops its barbaric bombardments. This is good news and a great achievement for the Ukrainian army and Ukrainian society.

Even on this day of our victory, I will not renounce my criticism of the West for the half-heartedness and timidity of its measures. Most credit should go to the Ukrainian army and the Ukrainian leadership.

But this is a stepping stone, although a noteworthy one. At the same time, the enemy has not disappeared; it is still strong and sly. It warrants vigilance. But in any case, here is another important positive result that holds promise — this is Putin's huge internal defeat.

Because everyone understands that this gung ho plan to seize the whole of Ukraine is Putin's personal plan. And, in fact, the military, the General Staff of the Russian Federation opposed this plan. The people in the General Staff are not doves of peace, not friends of Ukraine, they are equally enemies, equally Russian imperialists, but they are simply military professionals. And they understood even before this military operation, and were again reassured in the course of it, that this task, from a military point of view, was impossible. They put pressure on Putin. And after such internal political and external military defeats, dictators do not survive for long. So, I think the side effect of this military success of the Ukrainian army is a sharp reduction in Putin's political life.

Ukraine won, not the West. The main thing is Moscow's rejection of the initially declared goals of the war, since they failed.

Years later, Russia will definitely have intentions to try to conquer Ukraine again. But Ukraine proposes far more serious security guarantees than the failed NATO. Kyiv declares eight states as guarantors of its security, which will be obliged to give support to Ukraine in case of new Russian aggression. These are stronger guarantees than NATO guarantees. And, besides, the Ukrainian army itself, which repelled this attack, is another guarantee of security.

 One more thing worth mentioning: during his time in Poland, Joe Biden gave a very good speech. One gets the impression that he is outraged by the war crimes that Putin unleashed around Ukraine. I am very disappointed with the reaction of American society — journalists and politicians who criticize him for a completely natural and fair phrase that such a criminal should not remain in power. This is where Biden is great. But the fact that he did not give Ukraine aircraft and air defense systems until recently is bad. Although the Ukrainian army coped well anyway.

 What awaits Ukraine as an outcome of this war? Russia will expand Donbas to the borders of Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts. But that will not change anything. Ukraine does not recognize this annexation of Donbas. This is not peace, but a truce reached on the border of Donbas. Once Putin falls from power, then Donbas will return.

 Either way, it's a significant win. After all, the threat was the destruction of the entire Ukrainian state. And Ukraine found the strength to give a military response, to smash the Russian army, to inflict heavy losses. This prompted the generals to force Putin to change the goals of the war.

They realized that the occupation of the entire country is an unattainable task, especially with such a level of resistance from the Ukrainian army and society, and such motivation. And so they decided to right the ship, to save face. But they, too, can say to their society — we saved the people of Donbas from genocide, we destroyed a significant part of the infrastructure of the Ukrainian army, Ukraine is not joining NATO anymore. This is how they save face.

The main thing has been achieved. A monstrous threat has been averted — the destruction of Ukrainian statehood. This is a huge achievement of the Ukrainian army and society. And a huge military-political defeat for Russia, and, above all, for Putin.

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