US Lend Lease Once Saved Russia; Now it Weakens It

US lend lease is explained in the video below. During WWII, the US kept the USSR afloat so as to weaken Hitler’s Nazi army. Now, US lend lease is instrumental in weakening the Nazis of today — Putin’s Russia.

There is nothing noble about what the US government is doing. To Biden and his gang of pretenders, it is just an excuse to spend a lot of money and to pretend they are the good guys.

Meanwhile in the fantasy world of Russian leadership, minds are being irrevocably twisted in the attempt to rationalize Putin’s decision to go through with his “great Ukrainian adventure.”

Big Fish in a Small Pond: Russia’s Surreal Disconnect

One “achievement” of the barbarian invasion of Ukraine is that no one inside of Russia can feel safe questioning the decision-making coming out of the Kremlin — no matter how ludicrous or suicidal to Russia. The atmosphere there is entirely and irretrievably surreal.

In this atmosphere of complete repression, even political figures who once seemed to offer alternative ideas now echo Putin’s uncompromising words. Former President Dmitry Medvedev has insisted that criticism of the operation amounts to treason. Even Naryshkin, a skeptic in February, has found his war footing and now faithfully parrots the government line. People no longer speak with their own voices; the shadow of Putinist Chekism now covers the entire country.

… The last time the Kremlin built such an all-controlling state, under Andropov’s leadership in the early 1980s, it unraveled when the security forces relaxed their grip and allowed reform. Putin knows that story well and is unlikely to risk the same outcome. And even without him, the system he built would remain in place, sustained by the new security cohort—unless a 1980s Afghanistan-style debacle in Ukraine destroys it all. With this bureaucracy holding tight to power, Moscow’s foreign adventurism might abate. But as long as the structure holds steady, Russia will remain oppressed, isolated, and unfree.

Nina Khrushcheva

Foolish people — total idiots — may think that Putin’s complete control of the idea space in Russia is a sign of strength. That assertion might have some validity if Putin’s decision-making were based on sound reasoning. But what kind of sound reasoning could validate Putin’s decision to invade, and his other war-making decisions so far? In the real world, it is all about the decisions that are made. Sooner or later, actions have consequences.

Putin’s War-Making Calculus: Decisions and Consequences

The bear is snared. After more than two months of war, the Russian campaign in Ukraine has stalled. The stalemate settling across the battlefield has left legions of analysts, strategists, and statesmen bewildered. Some predicted a quagmire from the outset, but most seasoned military observers expected Russia to dominate the battlefield within the opening week of the war. Despite Russia’s claim that its “special military operation” is proceeding according to plan, the signs of a grave military miscalculation are mounting. The UK minister of defence estimates that over fifteen thousand Russian troops have been killed in action since the start of the war, and Russian factories are straining to replace the hundreds of tanks and armored vehicles that have been destroyed. As the battered Russian forces regroup in the Donbas, the Western military commentariat is assiduously assessing how Europe’s largest conventional army became embroiled in a grinding war of attrition against an ostensibly inferior opponent.

Some attribute the morass in Ukraine to megalomania on the part of Vladimir Putin, or the poor planning of the Russian military high command.

Putin’s Terrible Miscalculation

To Putin, his invasion of Ukraine was meant to be pain-free for Russia and for himself. Putin himself likened it to a rape, to an overpowering of a beautiful woman who just didn’t know what was best for her and needed to be shown by a powerful man. Putin’s pre-invasion state of mind is quite clear in its insouciant amorality.

Putin is a stone cold killer, and has been from the earliest days. If you ever thought Putin was a reformist who had the best interest of Russians at heart, please disabuse yourself of that ridiculous notion. Read “Putin’s People” by Catherine Belton for an exhaustively detailed historical look at Putin from early on, until today.

Putin has always been unspeakably vile, a psychopath from infancy if the truth were told.

Since Putin took power, dozens of journalists have been murdered and many of Putin’s most prominent critics have ended up dead. While some, like Alexei Navalny, have been able to remain alive, possibly due to the amount of international media coverage, not everyone has been so lucky. And while some critics, like Navalny, are imprisoned after a sham trial, others, like Alexander Gabyshev, are subjected to enforced psychiatric treatment.

It’s unclear exactly how many of Putin’s enemies have ended up dead in total, but the number continues to rise. And the murders aren’t only in Russia.

A Tiny Fraction of the Total Killed by the Madman

Putin’s Bad Decisions Have Real World Consequences

Political pundits wring their hands over the unlikelihood that Putin will be taken down by a palace coup, now that he has seized so much control over all speech and action inside the Kremlin. But Putin’s malignant decision making has effects that reverberate far beyond his sphere of absolute control. And in the real world, a host of outside actors possess agency and efficacy.

Putin opened Pandora’s box, on a whim. He never dreamed that the beautiful woman he was raping had such sharp nails and teeth. His pattern of vile behavior has always made him untouchable in the past, and he assumed that he would always remain beyond painful repercussion.

Nevertheless, Putin is expected to blunder forward with the full expectation of “success,” however he may be forced to define it, moving goalposts and all. He will try to level Ukraine’s cities and abduct its young people to Russian camps. When his soldiers must retreat, they will leave the landscape littered with corpses, raped females, and landmines, in a scorched Earth pattern reminiscent of every war fought by Russian men through history.

The mental pathology revealed by Russian behaviors in and around Putin’s barbarian invasion, is something that will haunt and impede the human future as long as it is allowed to exist. Unfortunately it exists at top levels of government around the world, where power to control other human beings is valued over better human traits such as the will and ability to create an expansive and abundant human future.

Ukraine Will Fight On

Ukrainians have no interest in negotiating with the Russians because several previous agreements were useless. Russia violated every one of them. Ukrainians will fight on, and do it more effectively and with more attention to the welfare of their troops than the Russians. Putin believes NATO is expecting a coup or revolution in Russia and that’s their motivation for supporting Ukraine. There’s some truth to that as many Russians, Ukrainians and Westerners believe peace will come faster and with less pain if Putin is removed from power, or does the improbable and admits defeat and withdraws from all Ukrainian territory. Putin will also have to return all the Ukrainian civilians sent to Russia and confined to internment camps. Then there are the accusations of war crimes in Ukraine, which Putin will be stuck with no matter whether he keeps fighting or withdraws. One major incentive for withdrawal from Ukraine is that it will end the extensive sanctions that are crippling the Russian economy and risking long-term damage if not lifted soon.

Russia is Not a Credible Negotiator
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