By David Sant for the Saker blog
Gonzalo Lira recently posted two soliloquies which were both accusatory and predictive about NATO’s apparent motivations and likely near-term kinetic military objectives. He concluded that after detonating a “dirty bomb” on Ukrainian territory, the USA and NATO would use the opportunity as an excuse to move the 101st Airborne Division from Romania into Odessa.
both may be sped up 1.5x-1.73x
While I think his big picture thinking is generally correct, I disagree with Mr. Lira on the mission of the 101st Airborne Division in the scenario he described.
Many years ago I was an officer in the National Guard sister Brigade to the 101st. Both Brigades are “air assault light infantry,” which was developed in the Vietnam War with the 7th Air Cavalry Division. “We Were Soldiers Once and Young,” tells that story.
Though the 101st is called “airborne” in reference to its World War II days, today its soldiers are not trained to jump out of airplanes; the 82nd Airborne Division does that.
The 101st deploys using UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters. Each division in the brigade has an aviation battalion with three companies of Blackhawk helicopters. Their primary combat mission is to secure a bridgehead.
When deploying, an air assault infantry battalion goes to a designated pickup zone, and a company of Blackhawks comes in to ferry them to the landing zone. Although they are trained to rappel out of the helicopters in a hot Landing Zone, in practice the helicopters usually land, and the troops jump out. It is much faster and safer. Two minutes later the chopper is back in the air and goes back for another squad at the pickup zone. Thus it might take the better part of an hour with two or three round trips to move an entire infantry battalion from the PZ to the LZ, longer if the distance is longer.
While an air assault infantry brigade can move 105 mm light artillery pieces via helicopter, the main supply and logistics assets of the brigade must follow the main force on the ground in trucks. Therefore, unlike the 82nd Airborne Division, or the Rangers, both of which are designed to jump into areas far behind enemy lines, an air assault brigade like the 101st is limited in how far it can leapfrog ahead of its support assets.
If NATO desires to fortify Odessa against the Russian advance, or use Odessa as a base to engage Russian forces near Nikolaev, they have a serious logistical problem. Supply lines from Poland on main Ukrainian highways or railroads must travel 700 kilometers to reach Odessa.
Figure 1: These routes are vulnerable to Russian air power and cruise missiles which have hit targets as far West as Lviv.
The shortest supply lines to Odessa for NATO would be from Romania, which has two segments of border with Ukraine. However, the best paved route would be through Moldova, which is not a member of NATO. Romania has state of the art NATO air defense batteries which can cover most of the route to Odesssa. Therefore, assuming they are effective against Russian cruise missiles, which may be a bad assumption, it would be safer to supply forces in Odessa from Romania than from Poland.
Figure 2 shows two possible approaches to Odessa from Romanian territory.
The NATO base in Cincu ( 45°54’49.15″N 24°48’21.25″E ), Romania is about 450 km from Odessa, which is too far for Blackhawks to make a round trip without mid-air refueling or using a FARP. It is more likely that an Assembly Area would be used near the Romanian city of Huşi.
The 101st cannot advance quickly to Odessa from the south, because there are practically no roads, and then Dniester Bay has to be crossed to get to Odessa. There is only one bridge over that bay, which is right on the coast, within range of Russian missiles, and far from the air defense umbrella in Romania. While possibly an avenue of attack, it would be almost impossible to defend that bridge from Russian cruise missiles.
Transnistria, with its Russian base at Tiraspol, is located directly in-between Romania and Odessa. This presents a problem for any NATO intentions for Odessa.
Transnistria, as an unrecognized breakaway province of Moldova, has been defended by Russia since 1994 or so, and would be seen as fair game by NATO, which doesn’t seem to worry about the rules, anyway.
Just like Azerbaijan and Turkey taking Nagorno Karabakh, if NATO can grab Tiraspol nobody other than Russia is going to squawk about it.
A key military objective for NATO / 101st Airborne is likely to be Tiraspol, the capital of Transnistria, which because of its geography, is the most difficult region for Russia to defend. Sandwiched between Ukraine and NATO, Russia has no supply lines to it. And more importantly, the two best bridges over the Dneister on the best-paved route to Odessa from Romania are located at Tiraspol.
In the Kharkiv region, Russian forces fell back rather than get encircled. But as Tiraspol lies within the merest sliver of land between the Ukraine and Moldova, there is no room for strategic withdrawal or even much maneuver. It is highly relevant to find out how strong the Russian ground and air defenses are around Tiraspol. However, I do not have access to good information about that.
The much-vaunted Kherson offensive may yet prove to be a feint, and the Ukrainian Army’s real attack might well come against Tiraspol from Ukrainian territory, with the 101st Airborne soldiers attacking from across Moldova. Although Moldova is not a member of NATO, I have a feeling that the USA could twist arms hard enough to get permission to overfly Moldovan airspace, especially with the promise of returning Tiraspol to Moldovan control.
Plucking Tiraspol out of Russia’s hands would make Biden look strong just before the midterm election, even though so far he never has been strong. This could be hoped to be a repeat of Joe Biden’s apocryphal poolside triumph over the bully named “CornPop.”
Therefore, if NATO takes action toward Odessa, the 101st’s primary objectives will certainly be the three bridges over the Dniester. Taking these bridgeheads would allow a larger NATO force to cross over and prepare to defend Odessa.
Main Bridge Pair: 46°49’57″N 29°29’26″E
Secondary Bridge: 46°55’11″N 29°28’20″E
Third Bridge: 46° 4’34.55″N 30°28’11.28″E
Without at least one of those three bridges, NATO cannot hold or resupply Odessa. The mission of the 101st would actually be to take Tiraspol and neutralize the air defenses first. Then a follow-on force can roll into Odessa with Ukrainian support.
Figure 3: shows a hypothetical joint assault by the 101st and Ukrainian forces on Tiraspol. However, it does not show the Russian defending forces, as we don’t know where or how strong they are.
In order to take Tiraspol, the bridges over the Dniester River must be secured. U.S. Army air assault infantry is ideal for such a mission. However, the 101st will nevertheless have to survive while coming under fire from Russian S-300 and S-400 air defenses. Crimea is the main Russian Anti-Air platform in the region with the S-400, and its batteries can reach about 200 to 300 km West of Odessa. (Albeit Tiraspol would be at the gray edge of their range.)
Figure 4: shows roughly the air defense ranges of batteries in Crimea and Tiraspol.
A single Russian S-400 battery in Crimea has about 380 missiles ready to launch. These missiles consist of five or six different kinds, having varying ranges, and various types of targets they are designed to hit.
The 40N6E missile in particular is designed to hit low-flying targets over the radar horizon at ranges up to 450 kilometers. These are ideal helicopter killers: The missile flies up to a high altitude, and then—about halfway to its target—turns on its own radar and looks down to find low-flying aircraft. Recently one scored a record 250 km kill in the Ukraine.
The Russian surface fleet also has S-300 and S-400 air defenses. However, the Moskva was the primary S-400 Anti-Aircraft platform in the Black Sea. The Americans helped the Ukrainians to sink it, so, it is gone. While, it is true that Russia cannot get any additional capital ships into the Black Sea, it has already moved several smaller missile ships from the Caspian through the Volga-Don canal system to Rostov-On-Don. I do not know if any of those smaller vessels have AA capability similar to the Moskva.
Despite such a long-range Russian AA threat to the 101st transport helicopters, it might still be possible for Tiraspol to be taken, especially if the US Fleet in the Adriatic were to launch a barrage of cruise missiles against Crimea. That would temporarily take up the full attention of the S-400 batteries, while allowing the 101st to fly to its landing zone in its UH60 Blackhawks.
But such a ploy would probably come at the cost of the NATO carrier group. If the US Navy fires on Crimea or the Russian Navy, it seems quite certain that the Russian Navy will sink the entire carrier group.
The Russians could have long ago escalated this war and sunk the NATO naval assets in the Mediterranean with a first strike. There is a reason that they have not escalated so far: The Kremlin realizes that time is on Russia’s side.
The Western Central Banking System is on the verge of a full melt-down. Russia, China, and Iran have made great progress toward ending the U.S. petrodollar hegemony for energy sales (and for much else). Even in the Ukraine, the slow grind is working in Russia’s favor, despite all the news headlines to the contrary.
The longer Russia waits to escalate, the sooner the U.S., UK, and EU hang themselves with their own rope. It looks like the West has about six months left, tops. We are running out of diesel fuel, oil, gasoline, natural gas, fertilizer—and soon enough—food.
However, if that calculation were to change, Russia could very quickly escalate and deal a quick defeat to the entire NATO naval and air forces via its hypersonic missiles and S-400, S-500, and S-550 air defenses. Russia could permanently blind NATO’s GPS and spy satellites in 30 minutes.
Why hasn’t Russia simply ended this like it could? Because, the U.S. would be likely to retaliate with nuclear weapons. Even though the Russian S-500 and S-550 provide a missile shield to their main cities, they do not want to risk being on the receiving end of a nuclear strike. So the Kremlin is willing to eat relatively small losses in Ukraine and the Black Sea, because it knows victory is already won. Russia is not willing to trade this for a Pyrrhic Victory. Therefore, patience continues to dominate Russia’s actions.
NATO, on the other hand, seems to have misinterpreted patience for weakness. If the geniuses of “NATO” send in the 101st Airborne Division and a Mechanized Infantry Brigade to Odessa, they will learn the hard way that the propaganda about Russian losses in Ukraine was wrong. But I hope they don’t do it. Both Odessa and Tiraspol are ancient and beautiful cities. It would be a terrible tragedy to see them leveled like Mariupol was.
In the final analysis, the only way that the U.S. could pull this whole thing off would be if it can degrade the Russian air defense capabilities for long enough to fly their entire air assault brigade into the landing zones, which is to say, about 12 hours. However, the Russians are “waiting for it,” so, I wouldn’t bet on the U.S.
Crimea is unsinkable. The US Carrier group in the Adriatic is hypersonic missile bait. Tiraspol is a historical Russian city like Odessa. Russia would hate to lose it, but it is the least defensible of all their properties at the moment.
While it would be a big gamble by NATO, Tiraspol is the low-hanging fruit that the U.S., the 101st Airborne Division, NATO, and the Ukraine will probably attempt to seize. I think that will be their first objective if they choose to escalate with a dirty bomb.
What would Chisenau have to say in this hypothetical scenario?
I am ignorant in so many ways, …
Is Moldova a NATO member? Is it a sovereign entity? Is its border open?
Official relations between Moldova and NATO began in 1992 when Moldova joined the North Atlantic Cooperation Council. However, as Moldova’s neutrality is enshrined in its Constitution, there are no official plans for Moldova to join the organization.
The 101 airborne (Airmobile) has imbedded within its divisions Tactical Air Control Teams (TACP) and Combat Control Teams (CCT). These Air Force people control the air cap cover for the invading airborne troops. Any invasion by a NATO force would be all out war.
President of Moldova is bi passport holder, she is american…no comment needed.
Great analysis. Could happen. A Desperate west. Transistria as a dubious legal state. Ukraine may attack first and try to force transistrians to retreat into moldova, and then NATO will attack in moldova, to gauge Russian seriousness for nuclear weapons.
I don’t believe in that scenario at all.
Could it happen? Sure, if NATO’s really stupid. They’re evil, but IMHO not stupid.
I still hold the belief that Iran is the target. Why?
For one thing, attacking Iran will cause fuel and oil to skyrocket, which will be a great excuse AND cover for when and why the western financial system (on its dying legs) collapses.
Second, whatever Apartheid Israhell wants, Apartheid Israhell gets. They’ve been pushing for this war for the past 40+ years. And the Zionist Satanists always get what they want. Why they’ve been preparing for it for a while now.
Whether they’re truly stupid is open to debate, what is not is the fact that NATO is in a strange and exceedingly dangerous state: both panicky and hugely over-confident. Any sort of terribleness can jump off when people are like this.
Per Larry Johnson re 101st
Frankly, it would be a suicide mission to deploy these guys to Ukraine.
i didn’t think that either Larry nor Matrynov realising how stupid the crazys in Foggy bottom really are.
And when the 101 start finally dying in UA it doesn’t matter anymore either. At this point the War has go kinetic and wouldn’t stop until one of the participants stop moving.
And that’s the point y’all seems to miss here. The Crazys from the Foggy Bottoms Basement NEEDs a War DESPERATELY.
They absolut not care what kind of war, because they think that this war will not reach them. Unlike the General Staff of the Pentagon how absolutely known that they will perish by evening. But like i said, at this point it doesn’t matter anymore and only a unconditional surrender of one of both superpowers BEFORE the ICBM exchange could end that.
And on that note i believe that the Russians stick to their word and will be free or die trying, literally. And thus makes the US the only of both how have to surrender…and now think again…the United States…humiliated by a unconditional surrender of their General Staff due to some 101 dying in Odessa and then the Russian Army come to Washington as occupiers…sound unbelievable? Yeah to me too. So, nuclear exchange it is.
Yep, any rational calculation of the cost went out the window a long time ago. It’s the Retards’ Suicidal Crusade now.
You are correct.
But the “West” initiated this disastrous war with the apparent mistaken belief that it would collapse Russia. So considering the results of reckless actions has not been the strength of the West.
Additionally, the West has just sacrificed Europe with the destruction Nordstream and has been sacrificing Ukrainians on suicide missions.
So I would not be surprised at all if this was, at least, contemplated.
100 American decision makers in a room. How many psychopaths among them?
I’m holding out that the sane 10% will prevail.
Most Americans are totally sane, if only because most of them are not from the USA.
I am holding out that America will defeat the US :-)
Yes Moldova and the Breakaway province Transnistria could both be run over by NATO.
But by doing so The US/NATO would violate the sovereignty of Moldova.
The neutrality of Moldova is enshrined in the constitution of Moldova.
The US/NATO would also get into conflict with Transnistria, and the patriots of Transnistria may well bomb the 3 bridges (A 2 lane and a 1 lane bridge) across the Dnestr River into Tiraspol.
If the patriots of Transnistria fail the task, Russia could reach the bridges with S-500 from the black sea.
Russia could also take the Ukrainian Snake Island in the Black sea and place S-300 on the island.
Or Russia could launch its Amphibious Black Sea Fleet directly against Odessa, beating the US 101 Air-born battalion to the punch bowl. Ukraine has no Navy protecting its southern seaports.
Bad idea for the US 101 Air born.
A Report by nerdy News (Yes Nerd News)
Claims that a draft is written for Finland´s to enter NATO with the conditions that Finland will accept NATO nuclear weapons and NATO Bases stationed in Finland.
The draft is now sent to hearing for 14 days.
I’ll bet you that in 14 days, the draft will be retracted, as the stipulation written in the draft, is neither accepted by the Population of Finland, nor the Parliament of Finland.
And Russia will absolutely not accept NATO Nukes near Sct. Petersburg and Moscow.
This is just more scare propaganda from NATO, with no ground in reality.
Bloomberg just reported
The Pentagon’s new National Defense Strategy rejects limits on using nuclear weapons.
In its report issued Thursday, the US will not rule out using nuclear weapons in retaliation to a non-nuclear threat to the homeland, US forces abroad or allies.
The report said the Biden administration reviewed its nuclear policy and concluded that “No First Use” and “Sole Purpose” policies “would result in an unacceptable level of risk in light of the range of non-nuclear capabilities being developed and fielded by competitors that could inflict damage” to the US and allies.
The threats include hypersonic weapons possessed by Russia and China for which the US doesn’t yet have a proven defense.
The document was drafted well before the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
The Pentagon documents were sent to Congress in classified form in March to consideration before congressional approval of the fiscal 2023 defense budget.
The move could spark outrage among progressives, but will most likely prompt a sternly retracting letter from the WH, after a while.
Isn’t it about time for Russia to begin (very public) discussions with Cuba and Mexico about hosting missiles there? At some point Russia needs to put the USA on its back foot. Food for thought.
Russia could never be as irresponsible as these scumbag Americans. Anyway, they have submarines closer to the target.
This said, Iran should have an equal number of nukes as Israel. Checkmate.
Larry Johnson, puleeze. The guy is such a liar and so discredited, just a total loser. Still waiting for his evidence of Azov Nazis being flown to the US to spark J6, as he claimed.
1. To do this US needs new troops, not just those that rotated into Romania in June to replace others.
2. This would effectively establish a Nato vs Russia war and a potential Nuclear war. I can’t see the military, strategic or political point. For Rest of World it means US is openly guilty of starting WW3.
3. The supply lines now are open but nothing is being supplied. The issue is that Nato (sole purpose a conventional artillery war in Europe – well precisely in Poland or Ukraine against Russia) has not enough artillery to assist Ukraine fight against 200k Russian troops + some former rebels.
There is nothing to supply!!
Larry says it all. This was a photo op that went wrong when the guy on the ground thought he was a General and could talk big.
If there was a real plan to enter Ukraine you can be absolutely sure he would not have been talking to any media whatsoever.
The quality of the young human material here in the US is pathetic, the industrial “base” is a joke, and the financial system is already melting down, the flames just aren’t visible yet to everyone.
The “point” of escalating is not one of rational calculation or strategic insight, but the desperate death thrashing of a rapidly dying empire.
“The Russians could have long ago escalated this war and sunk the NATO naval assets in the Mediterranean with a first strike. There is a reason that they have not escalated so far: The Kremlin realizes that time is on Russia’s side.
The Western Central Banking System is on the verge of a full melt-down. Russia, China, and Iran have made great progress toward ending the U.S. petrodollar hegemony for energy sales (and for much else). Even in the Ukraine, the slow grind is working in Russia’s favor, despite all the news headlines to the contrary.”
This I think remains the basis of any correct assessment of the war.
money doesn’t really matter in Wartime, even Debt. A state can declared himself undefaultable until War is over and THEN goes bankrupt. and i am certain that the US will do this or plain defaulting during War and declare a new currency.
Many of the Elites will not care b/c they already have their assets physicalised and would go along with it. And the rest of the World, the plebs? We all known that the Elites couldn’t care less about us.
How realistic is it to try and seize these bridges if the Russians know all this and can prepare for blowing them up?
Excellent analysis both military and the petrol dollar side ,the kusa inc. greatest weapon ,
Putin greatest problem is how to win without destroying the world which the other side want’s to do !
Thank you very much !
Excellent, informative and well reasoned article.
An interesting point that I did not mention in the article is that if Hungary and Serbia refuse to allow NATO supplies to pass through their territory, then the only way to supply Odessa is a route through Bulgaria, Romanian, and Moldova. Bulgaria has a single bridge over the Danube into Romania. And Moldova has three bridges over the Dniester just outside of Tiraspol. Of course, Hungary is a member of NATO. But, so far they have been resistant to being dragged into the war in Ukraine. Serbia sits astride the Danube Valley, which is the primary artery of commerce from Germany to Bulgaria.
It was a bit surprising to me when researching this article to realize how geographically isolated Odessa is from NATO. There are very few good roads through the Carpathian Mountains. Historically, the Black Sea nations are all supplied from the Black Sea or trade on the Danube Valley from Germany.
Some interesting background reading on the pushing and shoving and machinations to integrate Romania into NATO is Bucharest Diary, by Alfred Moses, published by the Brookings Institution in 2018. NATO integration (interoperability) of course was a precondition for EU membership.
Moses was the ambassador to Romania from 1994 to 1997.
The book also shows how the USA interfered in various ways to influence internal Romanian politics.
Plenty of info, too, on the ins and outs of contracts for military helicopter sales etc. to Romania.
Much of the book is also about Holocaust-related activism by the author/ambassador.
the only way to supply Odessa is a route through Bulgaria, Romanian, and Moldova.
What about river supply as far as Romania on the Danube rather than by road, as a way of by-passing Hungary and Serbia?
On using the US fleet in the Adriatic: how long would it take for the fleet to be completely sunk – 10 minutes, 20 minutes? Rather a high cost to pay for [supposedly] getting [part-way] into Odessa, quite apart from the all-out war with Russia issue. That is probably not enough time to get the blackhawks into Tiraspol anyway.
Also moving NATO forces overland across Tiraspol soon after securing the bridgeheads would have to assume assembling large numbers of Nato forces nearby in advance, which would obviously be noticed by Russia, so they would get ample advance warning before the blackhawks start flying.
Sounds like a nice job for Ben Wallace/MI6 eh what?
Ukraine/Nato would certainly like to get their grubby mitts on that huge ammo dump in Transnistria. I wonder whether any 155mm artillery shells in there, and whether they could be moved as far as the frontline in Ukraine without prematurely exploding. They are all supposed to be in a pretty dangerous condition, which is why they haven’t been moved long since (Ukraine won’t worry about that, since the big bosses are not personally at risk).
Very interesting analysis.
I wonder if the US maybe do a quick one and escalates WITHOUT a “dirty bomb”? that could catch the Russians by surprise.
But even IF all of that could be true you forget one, and in my Opinion, MAIN factor here: That means full admission of NATO into the SMO and therefore direct Attack on Russia therefor World War III.
We would see a ALL OUT Mobilization by Russia within HOURS and this time for absolut certain no “tiptoeing” around anymore. the Barrage that will sink the CSG “H.W. Bush” will be going into history as the biggest one ever used, if they not going directly nuclear on in.
You known the Film “The Trapper”? The scene with the Attack? Yeah this will be then Russia.
realizing by thinking about it: No Russia would not escalate if not absolut necessary. it’s my War Porn addiction that let me made that prediction. in fact i believe this is what could happens:
Russia would tank any “distraction” of the CSG and let the 101 take Odessa, may fully mobilizes but then only strengthens the Front line and NOT steamroll NATO, like many of us wish for and absolutely could.
And then would likely “freeze” the Front and wait for the economic and financial collapse of the West.
Unlike the West Russia has everything on his own Soil for War and don’t need shit from the West they can plain wait it out.
And if they can prevent a nuclear exchange, THEY ABSOLUTELY WOULD. And that is something many, also me, seems not to understand: unlike the Western Elites, the Russians and not seething for frustration and lunacy, and are cold Blooded level headed leaders that will sacrifice even 100K soldiers but not risk the dead of their whole nation if their are ANY way out of it.
And what we likely will see is a “1984” scenario in wich “we” are at never ending “War” against Russia and China and neither can end it because as soon as one make the killing move the ICBMs exchange goes of.
giving the Goals of the “Greast reset” narrative it would fit perfectly:
Reduce the population by throw them into the Ukrainian Meat grinder, operating by the Russians.
Exerts total control over their own Population due to “Wartime” by any means.
Having a unifying enemy to distract from the internal tyranny.
Seizing assets of the plebs for “War efforts”.
Push any tech or social norm on the plebs because “it helps the troops”.
Yeah. That’s pretty much what Orwells has tried warned us from.
The US just revised its nuclear first-use policy to include “non-nuclear strategic threats to Allies.” Like Ukraine, presumably.
The US just revised its nuclear first-use policy to include “non-nuclear strategic threats to Allies.” Like Ukraine, presumably.
So I think you are right. Rather than go nuclear, Russia may just take a loss and keep waiting. Credit Suisse is failing like Lehman brothers did in ‘08. They just got a cash injection from Saudi Arabia but the whole system is tanking fast. If we can make it till the election then republicans will let Ukraine lose. We may have a Black Friday before then. The zionists are definitely going to go nuclear rather than surrender. It’s the market crash combined with the alternative of BRICS+ multipolarity that will take their power away, not Russia’s military. Keep the faith
Nice explanation of forces. If they use the 101st as described, it sounds like they are going to be sacrificed. I do not see Russia idly standing by, while this occurs, as this is a blatant use of US, NATO forces involved in military escalation upon Russian controlled territory or the first intrusion into the Ukraine airspace. They were warned.
The 101th will most likely be airborne to Kingdom Come and while I don’t want this fate for the individual men (and persons) it is what Russia needs.
Why Russia needs the dying of the 101? didn’t get it.
i can imagine that Russia would do shit and let the occupation of Odessa happening and would likely “freeze” the conflict in UA and play again on time.
Time is on Russias side and if the NATO is stupid enough to engage and try to fight Russia, it will simple hold onto it and stabilize the Frontline and then wait for the collapse of the West.
No, its best to annihilate the scum on the ground.
Time is indeed on Russia’s side, and it’s still only October.
Well, if the US wish to lose the101st go right ahead!
If NATO doesn’t have 2 to 4 mechanized infantry brigades to go in with the 101st, it would be a complete waste of the 101.
Also, Tiraspol is a fairly large city with a pro Russian population. It would tie up a full division of military police to control such a hostile city.
The main point of my analysis is that NATO is not in a strong position to do anything in Odessa.
This leads me to think the real NATO use for Romania is as a missile base against Russia. The 101st deployment there is merely symbolic.
The existing US missile base in Romania would be one of the first targets if NATO actively enters the conflict – as if they haven’t already, which reinforces the point about Russia’s patience.
I must say one thing, military people love war steroids, and whisper there is a financial crash beyond belief on the horizon – as in the lede.
The these brave heroes then say this can be solved with some kind of a Illiad Troy slaughter?
These very cowards, as Caesar said the fault is we are underlings, then get the pukes when it is absolutely clear the problem of financial crises must be solved with financial reform?
How can it be soldiers will face an artillery barrage, and tremble pitifully at the feet of bankers?
This is the definition of cowardice!
Putin and Glazyev are well aware of the financial implosion, and know very well this must be dealt with – they are showing the way with BRICS+ and EAEU.
Could it be a New Bretton Woods makes steroid soldiers wet their shoes?
Maybe.. bring the 101 home… and send the geniuses in Foggy Bottom to Odessa.
Give them all a pistol, a helmet and a uniform and let them play war…. because since that’s what they what.. so give it to them.
No “Fortunate Sons” here.
I think the Russkies would go along with my plan.
If USA troops enter Odessa they can say that Ukraine invited them in whereas if USA attacks Tiraspol it will be World War 3 and probably the end of human life on earth.
Before Russia allows their base in Tiraspol to be attacked, they will use some nice weapons to prevent it.
I would bet a lot of money that an attack on Tiraspol is not going to happen.
The Dems need -something- to move the narrative in this upcoming election. We already know they are experts at narrative manipulation, but that doesn’t work when the plebs are conscious of the fact that they are doing so.
I’m starting to wonder if the smart ones aren’t already looking at how to protect their wealth and slip away.
I’m not sure they have enough talent and hope left to pull something big that would change the tune for them.
The current moves seem more like orders from nervous politicians telling the Pentagon to “just do something that makes me look good right now.”
The only thing that would make Joe look good is a 7×3 pine box.
Regarding the elitist sickos, they require constant replenishment of organs and blood sacrifice, and wouldn’t last 2 months, even in an underground palace. They’d feel like tinned sardines without the yacht and jet freedom of movement.
As a discerning gambler I’d wager revolution is far more likely than nukes. Should US-NATO use a nuke in Ukraine then we most likely would see civil disobedience on a grand scale across Europe. A Societal collapse brought about by large scale unemployment and poverty. Le nuke for many would prove a welcome distraction.
I think it is too big of a gamble for the Biden regime to take. Midterms are getting closer and fuel prices are climbing in the U.S.
You may not recall the failed Iranian hostage rescue under Jimmy Carter but that fiasco gave Carter a big black eye. An attempt to block Russia from taking Odessa using such a small force entails too much risk and after Afghanistan and promising not to put U.S. troops in Ukraine it would destroy Biden. Or what is left of his presidency. Just my opinion.
Best I’ve heard, the BDE of the 101st in Romania is not outfitted or preparing for combat operations. They are on regular training rotation. I have not heard of any US Army units preparing for combat operations. DOD are not eager to engage Russian Armed Forces. State (Nuland), USAID (Power), and CIA (Whomever) are the eager, stupid, angry, ignorant, and arrogant ones (also racist and religionist).
US Armed Forces are being forced to down-size — several reasons for that — and replan from a set of huge, constant-rivalry, and largely obsolete standing forces to a small, dedicated, professional joint force expandable at great speed, along with industry and transportation to support. This has been done before and successfully, by then-MAJ George Wedemeyer at the behest of General George Marshall. So, planning to run from small to large in short order is nothing new in American military experience. Wedemeyer and Marshall called it The Victory Plan of 1941.
This Plan, more than anything else, enabled The USA to fight WW II successfully and to emerge from it strong and happy. For its thoroughness, thoughtfulness, and perspicacity, Wedemeyer’s Victory Plan of 1941 has a place in American military-cultural development somewhat parallel to effects of The Gerasimov Doctrine in Russian military-cultural development.
American military-cultural development is in process of developing a fresh “Victory Plan,” a new doctrinal content for a US Joint Force TRADOC. Along the way, the duty of government and the cornerstone of international relations are being re-thought and re-learned.
A general house-cleaning of US government civilian and military officials is underway. As that proceeds, military retention and recruitment again will meet requirements for the new “plan,” which will be joint, as Wedemeyer’s was. The goal of keeping a joint force at minimum but highly professional force structure — with new TOEs and new TOPs — but rapidly expandable will remain. This goal will incentivize industry, as well, to engineer US armaments and transportation that work in current conditions rather than reap profits fabricating armaments useful only in former conditions.
In these two videos, which I watched through, Gonzalo is taking counsel of his fears.
This hypothesis assumes a direct conflict between NATO/USA. Personally, I cannot see that happening. It’s too risky for the West in terms of uncontrolled escalation, ie. both sides backed into a nuclear corner. From the Russian side it would also open the door for potential strikes against Moldova or Romania, or even Brussels – are they really that stupid ?
The bottom line is that Russia is going to have to take Odessa.
Black Hawk Down.
The 101st, hmm, aren’t those the dudes who ferry ISISrael & Al Nusrah commanders around the Middle East?
I can remember the tension in the Situation/War Room when 2 helicopters (one never made it back) landed in a Pakastani compound on the border with Afghanistan, killing Osama Bin Laden in a shootout for the 6th, or was it the 7th time?
Obama knocked back vodka-martinis while Hillary played with a dildo on the sofa,
A map showing “Bin Laden compound”, that was a Pakistani military town, and no Bid Laden there
Uhg WTF WTFUD? That’s an image I can’t get out of my head. LOL
What to make of this new “front”? I think Moldova is about to be firmly incorporated into the collective west’s eventual stand-off and static position regarding Russia. The Dniester River will be the boundary between the two. Is there still a huge Russian materiel cache in Moldova? If so it’s capture would be a headline generating moment, perhaps to coincide with the mid-terms? That the cache would not be a game-changer and is essentially low hanging fruit would not feature in the headlines.
The Trans-Dniester region might be a harder nut to crack.
The eventual goal, as ever was the case, is Odessa. This will give Russia control over the entire north coast of the Black Sea. Once the ground freezes, I expect we’ll see a quick (?) move on Nikolayev, a heavily Russian city and former shipyard for the USSR. Once that is taken, the road to Trans-Dniester and Odessa is clear. I don’t see a boutique force such as the 101st being able to stop this. In fact, I don’t see anything being able to stop this.
Looking at a map, the whole lower Dniester landscape looks like a very marshy, swampy terrain. The Dniester hardly looks like a proper river! It hardly seems to have a mouth but instead ends up in a large marshy area, where the Moldova-Ukraine border is, then opens up into a large lagoon. Its outlet to the Black Sea is a tiny cut between two strips of land.
South of Tiraspol stretching to the Black Sea looks like an extensive area of marshes and small ponds and lakes.
There are just two roads that I can see connecting Tiraspol and Odessa. One of them runs over the tiny bridge at the mouth of the lagoon, and one cuts across through the marshy area just north of the lagoon. There are ca. 3,000 photos (and a few videos) of the Dnister at Google Maps. There are photos of some bridges, but I think some of these are in the upland area of the river where it is still in Ukraine. Beautiful lush green countryside. The photos are really worth a look. Do a search for “Dnister River”, then click in your browser on “maps.” Then click on the first photo to start the whole series of photos.
The lower Dnister area doesn’t look like a promising area to traverse.
Odessa also seems to be basically surrounded by swamps and shallow lakes.
That is what it looks like to me on Google Maps.
As Mr. Sant notes, Odessa looks to the sea.
Its later growth resulted from its proximity to the rich agricultural hinterland, and the the business in grain export . That also explains the presence of the large Jewish community in Odessa.
It looks as though the terrain would be a big challenge until the ground freezes. Even then, any vehicle convoys etc. would surely be very exposed on the few roads that traverse the area. And Russian patriots might easily blow up those roads, also the little bridge at the mouth of the Dniester Lagoon.
Also I should think that Russia would be very highly motivated to secure Odessa, which is one of the truly iconic Russian cities.
These are just an amateur’s speculations from diving down to the ground via Google Maps.
Interesting thought experiment but the 101st photo op is a bluff, if the US gets involved here it will be a nuclear first strike on Russia as the conflict would eventually go nuclear anyway, may as well go for first mover advantage and hope you destroy enough of their attack potential.
The fact is the US military cannot take on a peer adversary in a conventional manner as eventually the huge losses in personal and prestige equipment(CSGs) would directly lead to a political decision to use nuclear weapons by the United States. End of Game, the neocons don’t want that, they want to break Russia into pieces and devour it as they have with Europe.
Russia has bought its sovereignty at the international and domestic level for 2 or 3 generations just as it did the last time with WW2 with this SMO action in Ukraine. The Russian military has had months to work out the kinks in Ukraine and they seem to be making good progress and at this point, they are on track for having 300-500K combat hardened veterans within the next year.
The Russian military is a force to be reckoned with as they have paid the price with blood via experience in Ukraine, the 101st’s last real meaningful combat action against a peer like adversary was in WW2. They have a great name no doubt and it’s clear they paid the ultimate price in WW2 but those brave souls are long gone and the current force is largely untested against a peer adversary, it would be a suicide mission.
Not going to happen.
None of these scenarios result in a strategic victory. The US and its puppets can only postpone their defeat. All the weapons and troops they send against the Russians will be destroyed and will not be available in any other theater.
The Russians will continue to act with restraint to contain the escalation to nuclear. But if Nato pulls the devil out of the box then there! They have so many options that no one knows how they will respond.
I don’t know how technically it can be done, but I’d be blocking the communications necessary for the City and Wall Street to function.
Under the war conditions currently prevailing on the ground, the US/NATO cannot win the war and Russia cannot lose it. In order to change this unfavorable situation, the US are forced to step up its war engagement, i.e. bringing in boots on the ground, if they want to see another way out of the war than the one we are heading to: the US/NATO defeat.
I see two problems with this scenario:
1) It can’t be done undetected. The attack on Transnistria can be, at least initially, but not the further move to Odessa. Attacking Transnistria would immediately alert Russia to the probability of a move on Odessa. Russia would then immediately implement countermoves, probably sooner than the 101st could sort itself out in Transnistria and continue the move to Odessa.
2) Any move toward Odessa by helicopter or other air transport will be detected and subject not just to Russian missile air defense systems, but also Russian drones and most importantly the Russian Air Force. Martyanov was just talking about the SU-57 being able to launch long-range anti-air missiles and they are being used in Ukraine according to General Surovikin. A couple SU-57’s would make short work of the air units used to move the 101st.
Note that I don’t say the US won’t try this. As others have pointed, the feasibility of the plan or lack thereof doesn’t mean it won’t be done.
Colonel Douglas Macgregor in an interview with Judge Napolitano the other day said he was being told by people in the know in Washington that exactly such stupid plans for a US intervention were being discussed at the highest levels.
Looking at the situation objectively, the US has no choice but to intervene. When, not if, Russia takes the rest of Ukraine, as they also must to insure Russia’s security, the US is going to be faced with a defeat far worse than the withdrawal from Iraq or Afghanistan or the failure in Libya. The “Crazies” in Washington will have a much larger failure than any they’ve had so far and it will be an obvious public failure which will exacerbate the already contentious political divide in the country. It is problematic whether the more sane individuals in the Pentagon, who have an awareness of how bad an operation such as is postulated could fail, will be able to prevent it or a similar stupid operation from being tried.
This is the most dangerous moment in the war. And an even more dangerous moment could occur in the future.
I’m afraid the US/NATO will do anything to save “face.”
In this respect the crazies in Washington and NATO have become truly “oriental.”
The Russians and the rest of the world will have to come up with some kind of “interventions” to help the Crazies save “face” in order to prevent a nuclear holocaust that will end the story for everyone.
“I’m afraid the US/NATO will do anything to save face.”
Let them do it! The final act will be certainly bloodier, the outcome will be sweeter for the Russians and more humiliating for the US/NATO!
“Many years ago I was an officer in the National Guard”
all of this is just a conjecture from an ex-member of a national guard.
so much Hollywood is not a good thing…
Perhaps. You may not be aware that the National Guard in the USA is entirely made up of combat arms units, and those are generally staffed with a high percentage of war veterans. The NG units in the USA tend to win at their national training center drills. The Army Reserve, on the other hand, is entirely made up of support units.
Yes, all analysis is conjecture. My conclusion from the thought experiment is that NATO cannot reinforce Odessa without taking Tiraspol first. And even that cannot succeed without going to full scale war against Russia. And even then, their supply lines are so bad they will fail. Are they crazy enough to try it? With the fools running DC and the Pentagon, it is truly hard to judge.
There is no way in hell Americans are ever going to take Odessa and think Russia’s just going to let them. I would bet my house they will throw them out.
I don’t think they would have time to get out,they would be buried there.
Interesting scenario David but let’s just step back a bit and examine our basic premises.
From what I’ve read the ‘Screaming Eagles’ deployed their divisional headquarters and an air assault brigade to Romania. Various reports say around 4700 troops from the division were deployed, so that checks out. A single air assault brigade; though I’m not sure they’ve brought all their helicopters along to Romania.
There are about 1500 Russian troops in Transnistria, mainly motorised rifles with no artillery, armour or air defence units attached.
Assuming the plan is to take Tiraspol, that would give the attackers the textbook 3:1 ratio needed to overcome the defenders. But that is where the textbook ends because if the Russians — and Transnistrians — decide to conduct their defence in built-up areas, a far larger attacking force would be needed, and more time, much more time. In most likelihood the ‘Battle of Tiraspol’ would be raging as the US goes to the polls.
Bottomline: The sole brigade of the 101st Div currently present in Romania won’t be doing any assaulting anytime soon.
Of course, we are only indulging in idle speculation here because we know any assault on Russian forces — ‘peacekeepers’ as far as RF is concerned — in Transnistria will mean open US-Russia confrontation and we know where that will lead to.
The Russians are perfectly aware of the loons running the West and keep a sharp eye out — as we would expect them to — for signs of possible escalation: eg troop movements, shipping, deployment of air assets, sabotage, employment of WMD, etc in all of Nato in order to nip the problem in the bud as they are doing with the Ukrainian dirty bomb. A possible assault on Transnistria is no different.
I agree. The main point of this thought experiment was to explore Lira’s scenario. The 101 could probably take the train to Odessa from Poland if they really wanted to go there. Presently, Odessa is controlled by Ukraine, so it’s just a matter of finding a transport vector that works.
Odessa has strategic value to Ukraine as one of its last two remaining sea ports, the other being Nikolaev. But it would have no strategic value to NATO in the event of a direct war between NATO and Russia. NATO cannot get ships into the Black Sea.
Odessa is backed by swamps and a neutral country, and even Romania is a wilderness. It would be very easy for Russia to disrupt supply lines to NATO from either Poland or Romania.
Odessa’s value is mainly it’s value to Russia. She is a woman being held hostage by the terrorist demanding a ransom. Russia will try to save her. And that is why NATO and the Banderistas will entrench there.
FUKUS/NATO has watched Gen. Armageddon stabilize and integrate the front line while massing armour, personnel and materiel in the rear, and watched UA’s electrical grid be brought to the edge of collapse. They’ve looked at all the previous simulations, worked their sums and know full well that the UA they’d hoped for is gone, even if they can’t say so out loud.
Tiraspol seems strategically irrelevant. It may distract the Russians for a bit, but wouldn’t change the fact that Gen. Armageddon is gonna be ready to roll in the 2nd half of Nov, and roll he will.
Their last hope to salvage something from their multi-decade Ukrainian project is to hang on to a rump UA that includes Odessa. Without Odessa, a rump UA is simply unviable militarily, economically or socio-politically. A perpetually vulnerable bridgehead that sucks up cash and yields little reward.
Dropping the 101st into Odessa would be a PR stunt. Odessa is already crawling with foreigners, and adding ~2,000 more won’t make a difference militarily. Its function would be to act as a tripwire. Some mad faction within US/NATO command doubtless calculates that, if/when the Russians decide to attack/besiege the city, the 101st’s high profile would serve to raise a public outcry to save them so great that saner heads would be sidelined and they’d finally get their chance “to teach Russia a lesson”.
Either the “mad faction” prevails, or is over-ruled. I can’t see it prevailing, but we haven’t yet gone through the US mid-terms or the critical G20 meeting mid-Nov, and stranger things have happened.
Contrary to Lira’s worries, neither the 101, nor any other NATO units will be visiting Odessa anytime soon. Maybe they could get there. But, the supply lines are impossible.
The Ukrainians, however, will probably try to do another Mariopol in Odessa.
Russia does not want to destroy Odessa the way Mariopol was destroyed. It will be interesting to see how Gen. Armageddon decides to reclaim Odessa and if he can take it without destroying it.
The supply lines are not the issue and NATO has been all over Odessa for years. My point was that, rather than defence, the 101st’s public profile would act as a catalyst to get the avg American to demand that its govt “Do something!” when they get trapped in there.
Odessa is already well defended. It’s Mariupol x10, with an underground city connected by 10s of kms of tunnels and fortifications designed and built by the Soviets as a nuke-proof sanctuary. If Odessa’s defenders decide to defend, there’s virtually no way to take it head-on except by starving it out.
The general consensus seems to be that both Odessa and Kharkov will be “taken” by a combination of military pressure from the outside and an internal overthrow of their respective Gauleiters.
I have no idea whether it’s true or not, but it has been said that the tunnel system in Odessa would still be easier to neutralize than the one underneath the Mariupol steel plant. That’s because of the very fact that it’s so extensive. Entrances are said to be sprinkled out over the entire city area. In Mariupol the problem was that entrances were hidden deep inside the plant.
I likewise have no idea if what “has been said” is true, but it would be an interesting point if it is. It seems to me, however, that a multitude of entrances advantage the defenders.
The advantage multiplies if they’re not well mapped. That fact contributed much to Solidarity’s ability to operate in Warsaw literally under the noses of the Polish Soviet security forces. Some of the entrances to the underground labyrinths, and some of the tunnels themselves dated from centuries ago and were probably never mapped at all.
We don’t know what the plan is,but i for one hope its a massive winter offensive by the Russians that will overwhelm the Ukrainians in the Kherson area and beyond,but for that Russia will need many more troops etc,maybe they are preparing just that,in WW2 the Soviets mounted more than one winter offensive with big numbers when the ground was frozen.
The war boots of the anointed ones are starting to feel the Russian mud by minute. For the last 7 decades they dream of nothing but Russian blood. Now, they smell it.
The point of no return has been reached.
I get annoyed by SMO, but in reality it is one big bait for the deranged. Kremlin WILL HAVE nato scum where they want them, and pick them apart at will. The resources of Siberia can wage a 1000 year war.
At the same time, epic fail by Russians to allow this war, to begin with, for all wars are fought on foreign lands, not on YOURS, because yours suffers death and destruction.
Anyway, Tiraspol most likely will be attacked.
For NATO, the city of Odessa has little value, but just denying/raping/killing will make it worthwhile.
I mean, that’s what they do for living.
Excellent text! Which shows the difference between a professional and a curious you tuber. It should be extrapolated to the entire internet with valid reasoning for the entire time span of the conflict in Ukraine. Bravo!
I don’t see why the US would even want to involve its ground troops in Ukraine. Especially not during the fall muddy season leading into the cold winter. Yes it’s true that they don’t have much time and they have to try to resolve the situation quickly. But there would be nothing quick about a ground war. Especially one where Russia has all of its defenses set up, ready and waiting and the US would be trying to do a Desert Storm type invasion without any international coalition, and without all the years of preparation that preceded Desert Storm. And without the (relative) financial strength that the US was able to muster back in the 1990s.
I think that the decision to move the 101st to Europe is more symbolic than strategic. A pretense that the US is on the front line, when in fact it isn’t. It’s meant to influence Europe, not Russia. After all, the greatest threat to the US hegemony is not Russia, in fact the Russian boogeyman has always been essential for maintaining US influence in the world.
The real threat to American domination in Europe is Europe itself. If they ever realize the degree to which their own interests would be better served by cooperating with Russia and distancing themselves from the US, the European nations themselves will shut down NATO and send the Americans packing. And certainly some European political leaders are beginning to see that, even if they don’t yet dare to voice it. And they will see it more clearly as winter sets in.
The most desirable asset in Transnistria ATM is the huge coldwar era weapons/munitions depot.
I can se a role for the 101 Airborn assisting within Transnistria, to help the Ukies get their hands on this.
It would be an incursion into Moldova by the Ukrainians, but I doubt there would be large protests to it. Earlier on there where also probing attacks by the Ukies in this area, as well as some terror bombing of Transnistrian offices.
If, and it’s a very large IF, the “weapons/munitions depot” was taken by the enemy it would be reKalibrated the very next minute.
Is it possible Russia is tired of having to fight wars on its soil while the protagonist, separated by an ocean, sleeps well? This time Russia may make sure Americans feels what war is like. Before the neo-cons in DC even think about attacking Russians, they may want to read again what Putin has warned. Just saying.
Great analysis, thank you for it.
I think that sending these U.S. troops into Ukraine would be the act of madmen.