Zalensky tells Putin – “we will be with gas, light , water and food – without you!”

This indeed is what we in Britain need. But more importantly, it is what the Ukrainian people need and (were they to understand the full context), it is what the Russian people need to0.

The war in Ukraine is a war that the Russians cannot win. They have no chance to be considered by the Ukranians as anything but an occupying force and the longer and more brutal the war becomes, the less the chance that Russia will get anything out of it.

Those Russian forces sound increasingly fed up , they do not get paid on time, they have insufficient protection and they find themselves in a hostile environment where they are not treated as liberators, but tyrants. What they have been told by their commanders and political leaders is not born out on the ground.

So I was not surprised to read this morning on the BBC website

Russian forces have withdrawn from key eastern towns, as a rapid Ukrainian counter-attack makes further gains.

Ukrainian officials said troops entered Kupiansk, a vital eastern supply hub for Russian forces, on Saturday.

Russia’s defence ministry then said its troops have retreated from nearby Izyum to allow them “to regroup”.

The ministry also confirmed the withdrawal of troops from a third key town, Balaklyia, in order to “bolster efforts” on the Donetsk front.

The Ukrainian advances – if held – would be the most significant since Russia withdrew from areas around Kyiv in April.

I suspect that many of us were thinking of the annexation of various parts of Europe by Nazi Germany, when Ukraine was invaded in February. Those countries needed to be liberated by “free” countries, for the second world war to end. At the beginning of this conflict, the phrase World War III was being bandied around.

But it has not worked like that, this war has been self-contained, hardly spilling into Russia , let alone those countries like Romania and Poland , that many thought would be the next target of the Russian Bear.

Meanwhile, the decision from Moscow to turn off the Nordstream pipeline (expected later in the year, does not appear to have worked. Wholesale gas prices – rather than spiking- actually fell last week as European countries announced that gas reserves were well above the target of 80% for October. The FT suggests that Putin has thrown in his trump card, only to find it has nothing much left to win.

Which makes me think that the “special military operation” which Putin ordered, may become in time, consigned to a drawer marked “bad ideas” of which Russia has had many. Putin may be able to distance himself from failure and continue – even if peace in the east means him achieving nothing.

This is the “small moment of hope”, but at a time when much else is devoid of hope, we must continue to pray for peace in Ukraine and for that peace to be just.

Or as President Zalensky put it , as Russia retaliated for its losses by blowing up power stations

About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
This entry was posted in pensions and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply