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Shêng / Pushing upwards

Ukraine will win the Ukraine War. The drone strikes into Russian territory will increase in accuracy and frequency—and will steadily take out more of Russia’s advanced weaponry, infrastructure, and prestige locations (office buildings etc). The momentum has been with Ukraine for about two months now.

To suffer a rebellion in wartime, as happened with Prigozhin, represents the worst that can happen to a state—it’s an absolute morale killer, a disaster. It also removed Russia’s best troops, Wagner, from the fight—a blow to both morale and practical life; and, worse, Putin couldn’t even stop them—he fled the capital (weakness exposed) and had to wait for a quiet moment to polish off Prigozhin. A man in full command would have had Prigozhin executed at once, but Putin is weak

Further, Prigozhin made some legitimate criticisms as regards the war’s conduct—for example, that the Russians needed to switch to a full war-time economy to win. If that had been done a year ago, then Russia had a chance—now that window has long passed.

Putin is still playing this cautious strategy, even as the combined casualties reach something like 350,000 men—this isn’t a sideshow conflict like his interventions in Crimea or Georgia, but he has remained stuck in the same strategy that served him in the past. Ukraine has now had time to build up the necessary counter-momentum to defeat Russia, even if she switched to a full war-time economy tomorrow.

So far as I can see, Putin never recovered from the shock that the “lightning raid” on Kiev failed—there was no Plan B, it was expected that Ukraine would go down without a fight. He never acknowledged that and never changed tack, all he has done is “grind on” with no overall strategy except the hope and expectation that the Ukrainian collapse is “inevitable” (meanwhile, the wheels are falling off around him—Prigozhin, the hits into Russian territory that he can’t stop…).

In modern war, the side with the largest economy always wins. For a time, I said this was in the balance because the Chinese have provided support to Russia (China + Russia = largest economy)—but it’s clear that the Chinese support isn’t unqualified. The Chinese aren’t pumping everything and anything the Russians want and need over the border. In typical Chinese style, they’re playing safe and inscrutable—a little aid for Russia, but nothing to directly antagonise the West (Chinee man, he cautious…he live long).

The West, meanwhile, pumps everything and anything the Ukrainians want into Ukraine (sometimes the Ukrainians have to mewl a bit, but they get it in the end). So Ukraine has the bigger economy behind it (America + Europe)—and that means victory.

Over a year in, we’re seeing the momentum shift to Ukraine—they can hit Russia and Russia can’t stop them. The question isn’t whether Ukraine can “invade” Russia, the question is how long Putin’s legitimacy can last in these conditions—he can’t protect the homeland, the economic sanctions are going to start to bite, everyone knows that his best troops (Wagner) rebelled against him and he couldn’t stop them…then he had to have his old associate killed (it’s squalid, not noble).

You notice that you don’t see this with the Ukrainians—all I see is a united front. I don’t see internal rebellion, double-cross assassinations, and so on. I see high morale and high motivation—sure, in the long run, it means the Ukrainians get flooded with migrants; but that’s not the issue at the moment—the war is the issue at the moment, and in war unity is vital. The Ukrainians have it, the Russians don’t.

Sooner or later, some section in the Russian elite will get fed up with the degraded economy, the military incompetence, and the fact Moscow Airport is closed every other day due to drone strikes…then there will be some street protests and Putin will fall, the Russians will sue for peace.

This fits with Putin’s horoscope—it says he’s someone who will not be well-remembered and may be despised, despite his hard work; and that he’ll face a decisive moment that will either change or destroy him—the Ukraine War will destroy him, I think.

Further, I asked the I Ching if the Russians would win and it said “joy, then misfortune” whereas when I asked if the Ukrainians would win it said “joy, pushing upwards”. Thus spoke the oracle.

That’s why I’ve switched to calling “Ukraine” Ukraine and not “the Ukraine”—because she’s going to be an independent country, that’s established now (written in blood).

Right-wing Russians should prepare for their society to go LGBT+, to go progressive—since whoever replaces Putin is likely to be progressive in orientation, although perhaps not in an enthusiastic way. Of course, as TE Lawrence said, nothing is written—but you have to be realistic, and this is what it looks like at the moment.


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