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Author Topic: Colors of Blue and Gold  (Read 61266 times)

Online Richard Smith

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Re: Colors of Blue and Gold
« Reply #152 on: February 02, 2023, 04:07:22 PM »
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It didn't take long for the war mongers to begin clamoring for jet fighters.  The endless escalation of this conflict begs the ultimate question: 

What happens when the choice narrows to Ukraine being overrun or sending in US and NATO ground forces?  What then?

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Re: Colors of Blue and Gold
« Reply #152 on: February 02, 2023, 04:07:22 PM »


Offline Joe Elliott

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Re: Colors of Blue and Gold
« Reply #153 on: February 03, 2023, 02:09:45 AM »

It didn't take long for the war mongers to begin clamoring for jet fighters.  The endless escalation of this conflict begs the ultimate question: 

What happens when the choice narrows to Ukraine being overrun or sending in US and NATO ground forces?  What then?

I don't see a trend leading to Ukraine being overrun. The Russians take months of a slow steady push to take Bakhmut before they are finally just able to take, ... Soledar, a pre-war town on 3,000. The great task of taking Bakhmut, a pre-war town of 10,000, will have to await another day. But if they are finally able to take Bakhmut, who knows what they may be able to accomplish next. The sky is the limit. They might even be able to take a town of 15,000 before Trump gets trashed in the elections of 2024.

The Russians have nothing to compare to the Ukrainian swift taking over of the large areas east of Kharkiv and Kherson. At this rate of Russian advance, the glaciers of the next Ice Age will overtake Moscow before Russia will overrun Ukraine.

But what happens if there is some sort of miracle reversal and Ukraine is on the verge of being overrun? Do we send in NATO ground forces? No. This is Ukraine's fight. No NATO forces will be sent in unless Russia attacks a NATO country, or uses a Nuclear bomb, or poison gas, or biological weapons. If Ukraine loses, Ukraine loses.

Which is why we need to make certain that we send enough. We should send in the jets Ukraine requests. All our expenditures, are a fraction of our yearly spending on defense, about 6 per cent. We should send in 10 per cent each year. And cut down our defense spending by 10 per cent. Surely, with Russia so occupied with Ukraine, we can cut down our defense spending by that much.

This aid to Ukraine is one of the best deals the U. S. has ever gotten. For just 6 per cent of our military budget, the Russian army is trashed, and the danger of Russia overrunning central Europe is greatly diminished for now and years to come. If we could spend another 6 per cent that would decimate China's military, making it impossible for them to invade Taiwan for the next several years, I would do it.

Just think what a great deal it would have been in 1938, if 6 per cent of the U. S. defense spending in 1938 could have been used to trash Germany's army, making it impossible for them to successfully invade Poland or France. And another 6 per cent spent to trash the Japanese navy, making an attack on Pearl Harbor impossible. Wouldn't that have been worth doing had it been an option? Why is this a bad option, for the U. S. in 2022-2023?

Online Richard Smith

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Re: Colors of Blue and Gold
« Reply #154 on: February 03, 2023, 02:04:55 PM »
I don't see a trend leading to Ukraine being overrun. The Russians take months of a slow steady push to take Bakhmut before they are finally just able to take, ... Soledar, a pre-war town on 3,000. The great task of taking Bakhmut, a pre-war town of 10,000, will have to await another day. But if they are finally able to take Bakhmut, who knows what they may be able to accomplish next. The sky is the limit. They might even be able to take a town of 15,000 before Trump gets trashed in the elections of 2024.

The Russians have nothing to compare to the Ukrainian swift taking over of the large areas east of Kharkiv and Kherson. At this rate of Russian advance, the glaciers of the next Ice Age will overtake Moscow before Russia will overrun Ukraine.

But what happens if there is some sort of miracle reversal and Ukraine is on the verge of being overrun? Do we send in NATO ground forces? No. This is Ukraine's fight. No NATO forces will be sent in unless Russia attacks a NATO country, or uses a Nuclear bomb, or poison gas, or biological weapons. If Ukraine loses, Ukraine loses.

Which is why we need to make certain that we send enough. We should send in the jets Ukraine requests. All our expenditures, are a fraction of our yearly spending on defense, about 6 per cent. We should send in 10 per cent each year. And cut down our defense spending by 10 per cent. Surely, with Russia so occupied with Ukraine, we can cut down our defense spending by that much.

This aid to Ukraine is one of the best deals the U. S. has ever gotten. For just 6 per cent of our military budget, the Russian army is trashed, and the danger of Russia overrunning central Europe is greatly diminished for now and years to come. If we could spend another 6 per cent that would decimate China's military, making it impossible for them to invade Taiwan for the next several years, I would do it.

Just think what a great deal it would have been in 1938, if 6 per cent of the U. S. defense spending in 1938 could have been used to trash Germany's army, making it impossible for them to successfully invade Poland or France. And another 6 per cent spent to trash the Japanese navy, making an attack on Pearl Harbor impossible. Wouldn't that have been worth doing had it been an option? Why is this a bad option, for the U. S. in 2022-2023?

I didn't realize how lucky we were to be paying for another endless regional conflict.  We have only spent over $100 billion with no end in sight.  Very rosy.  Let's send those jets. Maybe there will be another war soon and we can send more billions there.  And then another.  This has really worked out well for the US in places like Afghanistan and Vietnam.  Don't see how it could go wrong.  And escalation with a nuclear power like Russia can only get better and better over time. 

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Re: Colors of Blue and Gold
« Reply #154 on: February 03, 2023, 02:04:55 PM »


Offline Jon Banks

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Re: Colors of Blue and Gold
« Reply #155 on: February 03, 2023, 02:42:56 PM »
It didn't take long for the war mongers to begin clamoring for jet fighters.  The endless escalation of this conflict begs the ultimate question: 

What happens when the choice narrows to Ukraine being overrun or sending in US and NATO ground forces?  What then?

These folks have no idea how long it takes to train pilots on F-16s. They're living in fantasy land.

----------

 The Basic course at the F-16 schoolhouse at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., takes about 9 months and includes academics, simulation training, and flight sorties. But even before students arrive at Luke, they must complete six months of basic flight training in the T-6, seven months in the T-38, and six to eight weeks learning basic fighter fundamentals and advanced fighter maneuvers in the AT-38.

Drozdov said the Soviet-made Polish MiGs had received some upgrades to meet NATO standards but that they still have “outdated radar and missile technologies.”

“Pilots would continue to be sitting ducks in these planes—easy targets for the enemy,” he wrote.

The U.S. Air Force’s 2023 budget plans to retire more than 200 F-15s, but the Air Force considers the aircraft to be beyond their useful service life, and in some cases, the aircraft have safety of flight issues and can no longer fly.

At an April 28 background briefing, a senior defense official told Air Force Magazine that the United States continues to provide or facilitate the transfer of Soviet-era spare parts to keep Ukrainian jets flying.

“This is an air force that relies principally on old Soviet aircraft. That’s what they’re used to flying. That’s what they’ve got in their fleet. That’s what we’re trying to help them keep in the air,” the official said. “I’m not going to speculate about the future of aircraft deliveries one way or the other.”


https://www.airandspaceforces.com/ukraine-wants-f-16s-but-usaf-officials-say-thats-not-a-recipe-for-success/


That's just for F-16 pilots. Maintenance and logistics teams need training too and that can't happen over night.

Online Richard Smith

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Re: Colors of Blue and Gold
« Reply #156 on: February 03, 2023, 03:38:33 PM »
These folks have no idea how long it takes to train pilots on F-16s. They're living in fantasy land.

----------

 The Basic course at the F-16 schoolhouse at Luke Air Force Base, Ariz., takes about 9 months and includes academics, simulation training, and flight sorties. But even before students arrive at Luke, they must complete six months of basic flight training in the T-6, seven months in the T-38, and six to eight weeks learning basic fighter fundamentals and advanced fighter maneuvers in the AT-38.

Drozdov said the Soviet-made Polish MiGs had received some upgrades to meet NATO standards but that they still have “outdated radar and missile technologies.”

“Pilots would continue to be sitting ducks in these planes—easy targets for the enemy,” he wrote.

The U.S. Air Force’s 2023 budget plans to retire more than 200 F-15s, but the Air Force considers the aircraft to be beyond their useful service life, and in some cases, the aircraft have safety of flight issues and can no longer fly.

At an April 28 background briefing, a senior defense official told Air Force Magazine that the United States continues to provide or facilitate the transfer of Soviet-era spare parts to keep Ukrainian jets flying.

“This is an air force that relies principally on old Soviet aircraft. That’s what they’re used to flying. That’s what they’ve got in their fleet. That’s what we’re trying to help them keep in the air,” the official said. “I’m not going to speculate about the future of aircraft deliveries one way or the other.”


https://www.airandspaceforces.com/ukraine-wants-f-16s-but-usaf-officials-say-thats-not-a-recipe-for-success/


That's just for F-16 pilots. Maintenance and logistics teams need training too and that can't happen over night.

Yes, they will obviously need US advisors on the ground soon to operate and maintain all these weapons.  That is the next step in the Vietnam-like escalation before sending in the ground troops.  The goal is to send just enough support to keep Ukraine from being overrun and extending the conflict for as long as possible.  And the more resources that are sunk into the effort, the harder it becomes to admit a mistake and pull out.  Ensuring that this goes on and on funneling billions to military contractors for years to come.  Why does there appear to be no diplomatic effort to find some sort of resolution?  Why not send Obama and Trump to Moscow?  Or anything that might begin a way to end the conflict.  Most likely because the goal of many in DC is not to end it but to extend it.  They benefit from the money flowing to this effort and have residual Cold War bias against Russia that they are finally being allowed to exercise. 

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Re: Colors of Blue and Gold
« Reply #156 on: February 03, 2023, 03:38:33 PM »


Offline Joe Elliott

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Re: Colors of Blue and Gold
« Reply #157 on: February 07, 2023, 04:32:11 AM »

Very good article on U. S. aid to Ukraine.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/us-help-for-ukrainians-is-extremely-cheap-considering-what-they-re-accomplishing/ar-AA177cDp?ocid=Peregrine&cvid=72e030b68a414a42863d6ea4930c8587

Washington Examiner
US help for Ukrainians is extremely cheap, considering what they're accomplishing
Opinion by David Freddoso • February 3, 2023 2:06 PM

Every now and then, I hear a piece of commentary about the Ukraine war that makes it sound like we are repeating all the same mistakes we made in Iraq. I absolutely do not believe this is the case.

The Iraq War was an ideological war that we chose to fight. It was also a war that we fought with our own military. These two facts make it fundamentally different from our current indirect intervention in Ukraine.

Here's another difference: the proponents of the Iraq War wanted to see the U.S. spread freedom and democracy to parts of the world where they had never existed. They said so at the time. They also demonized anyone who disagreed with them.

This week, on my friend Derek Hunter's radio show, I had the opportunity to make the case in favor of the support we are currently providing to Ukraine against the Russian invaders. I'd like to restate that case here without going into too much detail, simply because I think it is a mistake for realist or non-interventionist thinkers to reflexively draw such an equivalence between Iraq and Ukraine.

Iraq was a disaster, of course. The cliche at that time was that you could not spread freedom and democracy at gunpoint. The more accurate criticism was probably that you cannot impose a democratic order and the rule of law overnight in a country that has never had either, and whose residents don't necessarily seem interested.

As a consequence, the Iraq invasion was not only costly in terms of American blood and treasure, and in Iraqi lives taken as collateral damage, but also in the dramatic destabilization of the region. The rise of Iran is our fault. We may have caused millions of Arab Christians to be driven from their homeland. The Iraq War was a calamity, a textbook case for a non-interventionist foreign policy, or at least for rejection of idealistic notions of spreading freedom and democracy by waging war.

What is happening in Ukraine now is completely different — for us, anyway. We did not invade, nor did we start the war, nor are we siding with those who did. Nor, in fact, are we trying to spread any idealistic vision. Rather, Russia is pursuing an interventionist foreign policy, advancing the other of the two competing visions for the world's future. The Russian and Chinese authoritarian model for the future is a world where there is no rule of law, no human rights, no privacy, and certainly no democracy. If their model succeeds, your social credit score will determine what you are allowed to do and where you are allowed to go. The American vision is the one we are used to for ourselves. We cannot and should not impose it, but what if others try to adopt it for themselves? Should we let them be destroyed without a fight?

In Ukraine, Russia is trying to spread its anti-democratic model of the world order at the barrel of a gun. If anything, this is their Iraq, and it's going for them even worse than ours did for us. We have not had to answer the Russians' aggression ourselves. No one is being forced to go overseas to defend Ukraine; no American is being forced to die for Ukraine.

For a very long time now, Russia has been a looming threat at the periphery of American and Western influence. Suddenly, thanks to Vladimir Putin's greedy ambition, it has run up against an enemy that is willing to do all the work in fighting and defending itself. The Ukrainians are staring down the second-greatest anti-freedom force in the world, which happens to be our own chief geopolitical foe, as Mitt Romney put it in a presidential debate more than a decade ago.

The Ukrainians are willing to do all the work and shed all the blood. All we have to do is give them the weapons — often just hand-me-downs that our own servicemen won't be using anyway.

Obviously, anti-corruption measures are perfectly appropriate. Nobody deserves a blank check for anything when taxpayer money is involved. But the investment we are making in Ukraine right now is giving back one of the best returns we could possibly hope for. We are helping a friend drown the Russian army in the bathtub of its own hyper-ambition, incompetence, and corruption. And we are able to do it for pennies on the dollar.

As far as conservative arguments that Russia is somehow a defender of traditional values, nothing could be further from the truth. This is the old Soviet Empire using old Soviet tactics. Russia is an even more corrupt country than Ukraine, and it also happens to be the abortion capital of the world. The Putin regime's campaigns of international assassinations and blackmail of its political opponents is anything but supportive of Western or traditional or Christian values. The phrase invoked by certain pundits (even people I respect) to disparage the Ukrainians' struggle — "World War Trans" — is just sophistry, designed to obscure, confuse, and conflate issues that have nothing to do with one another.

The bottom line is that Ukraine is proving to be a much better and more capable friend than anyone could have reasonably expected. We're lucky to have found someone so willing to defend their own freedoms, because it means that in the future we won't have to keep policing Europe every time a conflict breaks out. And when the Russians effectively cry "uncle" by begging to start negotiations before they find themselves in a significantly less favorable bargaining position, we should not try to rescue them from drowning by forcing anyone to the table.

I appreciate that this is not a non-interventionist position. But it seems to me a very practical realist position. We don't want a war with Russia, and now, we probably won't have to fight one.

And again, we are not trying to spread some kind of American ideology of freedom, but rather helping an aspiring free people defend their own freedoms — and evidently, they value such freedoms a lot more than Iraqis ever did. If we can defang the Russian Bear at a fraction of the cost of going to war ourselves, through the agency of someone with a genuinely justified and righteous defensive war, I just don't see the downside.

Online Richard Smith

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Re: Colors of Blue and Gold
« Reply #158 on: February 07, 2023, 02:25:19 PM »
Very good article on U. S. aid to Ukraine.

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/us-help-for-ukrainians-is-extremely-cheap-considering-what-they-re-accomplishing/ar-AA177cDp?ocid=Peregrine&cvid=72e030b68a414a42863d6ea4930c8587

Washington Examiner
US help for Ukrainians is extremely cheap, considering what they're accomplishing
Opinion by David Freddoso • February 3, 2023 2:06 PM

Every now and then, I hear a piece of commentary about the Ukraine war that makes it sound like we are repeating all the same mistakes we made in Iraq. I absolutely do not believe this is the case.

The Iraq War was an ideological war that we chose to fight. It was also a war that we fought with our own military. These two facts make it fundamentally different from our current indirect intervention in Ukraine.

Here's another difference: the proponents of the Iraq War wanted to see the U.S. spread freedom and democracy to parts of the world where they had never existed. They said so at the time. They also demonized anyone who disagreed with them.

This week, on my friend Derek Hunter's radio show, I had the opportunity to make the case in favor of the support we are currently providing to Ukraine against the Russian invaders. I'd like to restate that case here without going into too much detail, simply because I think it is a mistake for realist or non-interventionist thinkers to reflexively draw such an equivalence between Iraq and Ukraine.

Iraq was a disaster, of course. The cliche at that time was that you could not spread freedom and democracy at gunpoint. The more accurate criticism was probably that you cannot impose a democratic order and the rule of law overnight in a country that has never had either, and whose residents don't necessarily seem interested.

As a consequence, the Iraq invasion was not only costly in terms of American blood and treasure, and in Iraqi lives taken as collateral damage, but also in the dramatic destabilization of the region. The rise of Iran is our fault. We may have caused millions of Arab Christians to be driven from their homeland. The Iraq War was a calamity, a textbook case for a non-interventionist foreign policy, or at least for rejection of idealistic notions of spreading freedom and democracy by waging war.

What is happening in Ukraine now is completely different — for us, anyway. We did not invade, nor did we start the war, nor are we siding with those who did. Nor, in fact, are we trying to spread any idealistic vision. Rather, Russia is pursuing an interventionist foreign policy, advancing the other of the two competing visions for the world's future. The Russian and Chinese authoritarian model for the future is a world where there is no rule of law, no human rights, no privacy, and certainly no democracy. If their model succeeds, your social credit score will determine what you are allowed to do and where you are allowed to go. The American vision is the one we are used to for ourselves. We cannot and should not impose it, but what if others try to adopt it for themselves? Should we let them be destroyed without a fight?

In Ukraine, Russia is trying to spread its anti-democratic model of the world order at the barrel of a gun. If anything, this is their Iraq, and it's going for them even worse than ours did for us. We have not had to answer the Russians' aggression ourselves. No one is being forced to go overseas to defend Ukraine; no American is being forced to die for Ukraine.

For a very long time now, Russia has been a looming threat at the periphery of American and Western influence. Suddenly, thanks to Vladimir Putin's greedy ambition, it has run up against an enemy that is willing to do all the work in fighting and defending itself. The Ukrainians are staring down the second-greatest anti-freedom force in the world, which happens to be our own chief geopolitical foe, as Mitt Romney put it in a presidential debate more than a decade ago.

The Ukrainians are willing to do all the work and shed all the blood. All we have to do is give them the weapons — often just hand-me-downs that our own servicemen won't be using anyway.

Obviously, anti-corruption measures are perfectly appropriate. Nobody deserves a blank check for anything when taxpayer money is involved. But the investment we are making in Ukraine right now is giving back one of the best returns we could possibly hope for. We are helping a friend drown the Russian army in the bathtub of its own hyper-ambition, incompetence, and corruption. And we are able to do it for pennies on the dollar.

As far as conservative arguments that Russia is somehow a defender of traditional values, nothing could be further from the truth. This is the old Soviet Empire using old Soviet tactics. Russia is an even more corrupt country than Ukraine, and it also happens to be the abortion capital of the world. The Putin regime's campaigns of international assassinations and blackmail of its political opponents is anything but supportive of Western or traditional or Christian values. The phrase invoked by certain pundits (even people I respect) to disparage the Ukrainians' struggle — "World War Trans" — is just sophistry, designed to obscure, confuse, and conflate issues that have nothing to do with one another.

The bottom line is that Ukraine is proving to be a much better and more capable friend than anyone could have reasonably expected. We're lucky to have found someone so willing to defend their own freedoms, because it means that in the future we won't have to keep policing Europe every time a conflict breaks out. And when the Russians effectively cry "uncle" by begging to start negotiations before they find themselves in a significantly less favorable bargaining position, we should not try to rescue them from drowning by forcing anyone to the table.

I appreciate that this is not a non-interventionist position. But it seems to me a very practical realist position. We don't want a war with Russia, and now, we probably won't have to fight one.

And again, we are not trying to spread some kind of American ideology of freedom, but rather helping an aspiring free people defend their own freedoms — and evidently, they value such freedoms a lot more than Iraqis ever did. If we can defang the Russian Bear at a fraction of the cost of going to war ourselves, through the agency of someone with a genuinely justified and righteous defensive war, I just don't see the downside.

The fundamental flaw in Vietnam, Afghanistan and many other regional conflicts was not to understand the underlying reason for the war and the limitations of military intervention.   These conflicts have centuries of history with political, religious, and cultural implications that Americans can never fully appreciate.  They cannot be resolved through war.  It's questionable that many can be solved at all.  Only time can do that.  Ukraine is not a democracy.  The concept is as foreign to them as it was to Iraq or Afghanistan.   Americans were sold a narrative on those conflicts (i.e. fighting terrorism and weapons of mass destruction).  Many believed in those lies until the end.  The same propaganda machine with almost the identical individuals promoting it are selling another narrative in Ukraine.  An emotional appeal based loosely on supporting democracy but what is really just a continuation of the relentless anti-Trump narrative that tried desperately to link him is some vague way to Putin.  The momentum from the fake Russian collusion conspiracy and claim that Trump was opposed to democracy fed into the appeal to support Ukraine.  That is a fundamental reason that leftists - who traditionally opposed such endless wars - are among the most ardent supporters of Ukraine.  Russia is a proxy for Trump. 

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Re: Colors of Blue and Gold
« Reply #158 on: February 07, 2023, 02:25:19 PM »


Offline Joe Elliott

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Re: Colors of Blue and Gold
« Reply #159 on: March 22, 2023, 11:30:13 PM »

Russia’s Weapons Game in Ukraine Hits a Dismal New Low

Story by: Shannon Vavra

https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/russia-s-weapons-game-in-ukraine-hits-a-dismal-new-low/ar-AA18XnI7?cvid=445168a18dbb421aab144fe90d369bc2&ei=50

Quote
Russia has taken Soviet-era tanks from the 1940s and 1950s out of storage for its war in Ukraine in the latest sign that the invasion is floundering, according to researches from the Conflict Intelligence Team (CIT).

The weapons, T-54 tanks and either late T-54 or early T-55 tanks, are being sent on a train westward from the Russia's Far East, according to photographs the CIT shared Wednesday.

I understand that these tanks were manufactured back in the 1940s and 1950s.

As Russia's tank loses mount up much faster than current production can match. Russia has lost about 1,600 tanks in a year of fighting. It can only manufacture about 250 tanks per year. Hence, the Russian tank fleet is getting ever more obsolete over time, with older and older models which were not part of the initial invasion in Feburary 2022.Before this war is over, we may be seeing tank battles between Ukrainian Abrams, Leopard 2 and 1's going against Russian T-34s and T-26s. :)


Article on Russian tank losses and Russian tank production:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/davidaxe/2023/02/17/the-russian-army-could-run-out-of-tanks-in-a-few-years-what-happens-then/?sh=75da95202061