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Ukraine's Warrior State A Fact

Austin Bay on

Ukraine's heroic resistance to Russia's invasion has created several facts on the ground that affect immediate combat operations and shape nascent ceasefire/peace negotiations. The facts also affect the next five decades of world history, for they indicate we are witnessing the birth of a new warrior state of the type that knows defending democratic sovereignty is worth the blood, sweat, tears, fighting and dying.

First, the facts on the ground.

Ukraine has denied Russia a blitzkrieg "regime change" victory. Russian President Vladimir Putin expected Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy to either flee or be assassinated, Kyiv to fall quickly and Ukraine to surrender.

Zelenskyy is still on the planet, leading Ukraine, motivating NATO and amazing the world. Live or die, he deserves a Nobel Peace Prize for defending democratic sovereignty against imperialist tyranny.

After a month of combat, Ukraine still has more than what military historians call an "army in being" (an army still present on the battlefield); it has an armed nation in being.

Since Feb. 24, Ukrainian defense forces have destroyed some 20% of Russia's armor-heavy invading ground forces. Credible sources indicate Russian casualties are higher, citing the number of Russian units withdrawn to receive replacements and new equipment.

 

In the last two weeks Ukrainian forces have launched successful counterattacks in the north. This indicates they have local freedom of maneuver.

Credit steel-nerved Ukrainian infantry and local defense fighters who have honed their ambush and anti-armor tactics in eight years of slow combat in eastern Ukraine's Donbas region. Yes, Ukraine's forces learned a lot in the slow war Putin waged while the rest of the world bought Russian oil and gas.

Also credit superior anti-tank weapons like the U.S.-made Javelin and Ukraine's indigenous Stugna-P anti-tank missile -- but understand Ukrainian soldiers are employing them.

Fascinating fact: Ukrainian ground forces managed to thwart Putin's grandiose plans despite Russian air superiority. This has surprised the pseudo-military analysts who merely count tanks and bullets and jet fighters and the number of generals they know, but Ukraine has succeeded in denying Russia air supremacy.

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