How Ukraine Is Losing

Remarque’s book is more informative than the news, and it’s nearly 100 years old now.

This Russo-Ukrainian War is over. Another war could continue — a NATO war, a guerilla war, a nuclear war — but the ‘conventional’ war of attrition between Russia and Ukraine is over. Russia has won and the Ukrainian government is just sacrificing men for western media consumption. The long-telegraphed Ukrainian counter-offensive is offending nothing but the human conscience.

You can actually learn more from reading a hundred-year-old book than reading the delusional and destructive news. We’re at the end of Erich Maria Remarque’s All Quiet On The Western Front, which was, spoiler alert, only quiet in death. We’re at the point where the ruling elites know the war is over, but for them to save face thousands of young men must lose limbs, sanity, and lives. This is the saddest, most maddening part of that book, and it’s a tragedy to see it play out in real-time. As Remarque wrote:

The months pass by. The summer of 1918 is the most bloody and the most terrible. The days stand like angels in blue and gold, incomprehensible, above the ring of annihilation. Every man here knows that we are losing the war. Not much is said about it, we are falling back, we will not be able to attack again after this big offensive, we have no more men and no more ammunition.

Still the campaign goes on — the dying goes on —

I don’t know what Remarque meant by blue and gold, but it’s prescient that these are Ukrainian colors. There is no denying that Ukrainian soldiers are incredibly brave, but their corrupt leaders and callous foreigners are throwing them into a pointless meat-grinder. Just to say they’re having a counter-offensive, to keep the arms bazaar going a bit longer. Ukraine’s authoritarian government (they’ve banned opposition parties, among other oppressions) should have accepted the peace deal proffered last spring (or honored the Minsk agreement or taken any off-ramp for decades).

In the movie All Quiet On The Western Front (which I didn’t like) they introduce a parallel storyline where the losing Germans elites are actually visible. Some dude has to catch a train to ‘negotiate’ the humiliating Treaty of Versailles. He’s sipping tea while our heroes die in the dirt.

A hundred years later, however, when history repeats as farce, no one is even talking about negotiating. People are instead still exhorted to ‘support’ Ukraine when it is in fact this craven ‘support’ that dooms them to suicidal charges. The US and its' British/European vassals blocked the peace deal last spring and offered weapons deals instead. They poured gasoline instead of water and — as with every conflict they intervene in — everyone would have been better off without their ‘help’.

Unlike in World War I where these people actually fought, in this case they’re just profiteering and running propaganda which deceives only their own populations. For all the talk of NATO support, Ukraine is still not allowed to join. For all the talk of arms deliveries, Ukraine receives no (official) bodies. Instead of training from anyone with useful experience, they get mismatched, poorly translated advice from people fresh off losing to men in Toyota Hiluxes. Ukrainian soldiers are alone, massively outgunned, and given just enough rope to slowly hang themselves public. As I have written, with friends like these, who needs enemies?

Ukraine has taken to calling their counter-offensive ‘not a counter-offensive’. Instead they are conducting ‘reconnaissance-in-force’. What does this mean? If Ukrainian wanted to see the Russians dug in lines they could use drones, or open Telegram. Men don’t need to die to find out. And forget any element of surprise. Because Ukraine has destroyed two full armies already, this latest one is being crowdsourced in public. As such, they have had to advertise this counter-offensive for months, and the enemy was well aware.

Russia has thus mobilized, geared up manufacturing, and dug three lines of defenses. Ukraine can’t even get near the first one. They can’t even use their armor for fear of using the armor which makes the concept redundant. Russia has overwhelming air superiority, they have dug-in troops, and their resilient economy is on a war-footing. Meanwhile Ukraine has no proper air cover, they have lost huge amounts of men already, and their ‘supporters’ in Europe have shot themselves in the foot with sanctions.

The so-called ‘arsenal of democracy’ are just a bunch of de-industrialized arseholes who think propaganda is air cover. And poor Ukrainian men burn for their vanity and pride. As Remarque wrote in 1927, “The factory owners in Germany have grown wealthy; — dysentery dissolves our bowels.” He might as well be talking about Rheinmetall promising 14 Leopard tanks… in 2024. Western propaganda launders this ink on paper as something relevant, but it just means more blood in the dirt.

This counter-offensive is worse that counter-productive, it’s suicidal. Actually, homicidal is a better word, since the arms dealers and advertisers aren’t fighting it themselves. This is just murder on the part of the Ukrainian government and all of their ‘supporters’. And if you’re still cheering this on and denouncing anyone pointing out the obvious as a Putin stooge, then my condemnation includes you. You’re worse than deluded, you’re actively destructive. As the late Pentagon Papers whisteblower Daniel Ellsberg said, ‘any notion Americans are ever the “good guys” abroad “has always been false.”’

Politico cynically reports that evidence for Ellsberg’s last warning is ‘scant’, despite the US having 750 obvious military bases, and being involved in multiple hot wars, not to mention all the sieges, coups, and economic coercion. As the article communicated the context around the quote:

Ellsberg contended America still runs a “covert empire” around the world, embodied in the U.S. domination of NATO. He believes Washington deliberately provoked Vladimir Putin into invading Ukraine by pushing its seat of power eastward toward Russia’s borders; that the mainstream media is “complicit” in allowing the government to keep secrets it has no right to withhold; and that any notion Americans are ever the “good guys” abroad “has always been false.”

You can see the delusion embedded in the news, where someone states the obvious and readers are encouraged to fall back into the narrative that these military bases and wars are all good intentioned, despite decades of bitter evidence that they are not. The Pentagon Papers whistleblower has mercifully died of old age and we are still have this conversation. I go back 100 years and think of dear Paul, running into his old German head-master and having to listen to his violent ignorance proffered as accepted wisdom. This is Remarque, again:

Then he begins to expound just whereabouts in France the breakthrough must come, and turns to me: “Now, shove ahead a bit out there with your everlasting trench warfare-Smash through the johnnies and then there will be peace.”

I reply that in our opinion a break-through may not be possible. The enemy may have too many reserves. Besides, the war may be rather different from what people think.

He dismisses the idea loftily and informs me I know nothing about it. “The details, yes,” says he, “but this relates to the whole. And of that you are not able to judge. You see only your little sector and so cannot have any general survey. You do your duty, you risk your lives, that deserves the highest honour — every man of you ought to have the Iron Cross — but first of all the enemy line must be broken through in Flanders and then rolled up from the top.”

“He blows his nose and wipes his beard. “Completely rolled up they must be, from the top to the bottom. And then to Paris.”

I would like to know just how he pictures it to himself, and pour the third glass of beer into me.”

This is like the chicken-hawks today saying the war will end when Russia is pushed out and Putin deposed and Ukraine gets paid reparations. I mean, OK, how? How do you picture this exactly? I can’t pour enough beer into myself to make this comprehensible. This is like non-fighting Germans in 1918, arguing about what to part of France to annex. In another war, maybe, but not this one.

What is the point of these idle debates while men are dying in the dirt? What is the point of all these headlines when mens’ heads are being removed from their shoulders for 100m of ‘advance’? War is simply the ability to bend your opponent to your will, and Ukraine simply doesn’t have the men, manufacturing, or momentum to accomplish any of its goals anymore. They’ve lost two armies and this third, Frankstein-monster army of mismatched NATO leftovers, is just going to ground without air cover.

As I’ve said, Ukraine could theoretically win another war, ie one that NATO openly enters (which would be World War III) but ye average western word warrior doesn’t want that. They just to continue idly debating without actually putting men where their mouths are. They want to remain mobile eyes without mobilizing. And so thousands of much braver men bite the dust. Many of these are plain-old unlucky cannon fodder, picked up at gas stations and checkpoints and thrown into the front, in front of the tanks that the leadership cares more about.

If you’re still egging this carnage on, I hope you choke on your words, but how many wars have blood-thirsty westerners cheered on without consequence? This isn’t even the worst your good intentions have come to this century. How much blood is on your hands already? You seem to think red is white because it just never comes off.

What the average denizen of the White Empire doesn’t understand is that their humanity-biting dog of a military-industrial complex isn’t going to be good this time. The beast has already bitten dozens of countries, it just needs to be put down. Yet even after the destruction of so many countries on the altar of your weaponized good intentions, it keeps happening.

Western liberals are actually the worst because they still cling to the idea that ‘somebody should do something’, ignoring the historical fact that every western intervention makes things worse. All their media has to do is put up some pictures of something bad somewhere and these ghouls will reliably make it worse. For all your good intentions, all the world wants is for you to shut the fuck up and stay home. Nobody appointed America and its NATO vassals world police, and ACAB anyways.

The privatized propaganda of the White Empire is so pervasive that they are now spinning the gain of 300 meters as an ‘advance’. At the cost of how many many 2 meters underground forever now? They are still spinning future weapons deliveries as having something to do with now. Most perversely, they do not discuss the massive human losses Ukraine is taking, besides maybe saying ‘Russia is doing worse’, which is a lie. The very nature of offensives is that they usually incur worse casualties for the attacker, but this is a turkey shoot without air cover. The Ukrainians are getting slaughtered. None of this propaganda is ‘supporting’ these poor souls, it’s just making cynical sausage out of a meat grinder.

That’s why I don’t watch this shit at all. It seems to take decades for the fog of war to clear so it’s better to read a book or just look out the window. I think of the end of All Quiet On The Western Front. By that point you’re deeply invested in the characters, and then the book really sticks it in you. As he goes into his penultimate battle — long after the war is lost — Paul says:

For every one German plane there come at least five English and American. For one hungry, wretched German soldier come five of the enemy, fresh and fit. For one German army loaf there are fifty tins of canned beef over there. We are not beaten, for as soldiers we are better and more experienced; we are simply crushed and driven back by overwhelming superior forces.

Today the the Ukrainians on the front-lines have it worse. Most of their better and more experienced men have died one or two armies ago. You can find these facts buried in the western media, but they also flood the zone with such constant bullshit that it’s obscured. I link to western media throughout this piece not because it’s they’re good sources but because they’re bad, and yet they still have to acknowledge these facts.

Ukraine is not getting into NATO (ie, no reinforcements are coming), Ukraine is woefully short of ammunition, they have no proper air cover, and all of the promises of wunderwaffen are too little too late. What the western media doesn’t do is ask or answer obvious questions, which I will do at this point. But you can do this yourself, and you should, because these are the thoughts spinning through much braver mens’ minds, as they march to their doom.

What are Ukrainian men dying for at this point? What are their chances of winning? The truth is that there’s no counter-offensive here. It’s just offensive to man and all the gods. After all the dying, what I think of are the last men to die. Why? Fucking why? I think of Kat in All Quiet On The Western Front, and his dying words to Paul:

The storm lashes us, out of the confusion of grey and yellow the hail of splinters whips forth the child-like cries of the wounded, and in the night shattered life groans painfully into silence.

Our hands are earth, our bodies clay and our eyes pools of rain. We do not know whether we still live.

Then the heat sinks heavily into our shell-holes like a jelly fish, moist and oppressive, and on one of these late summer days, while bringing food, Kat falls. We two are alone. I bind up his wound; his shin seems to be smashed. It has got the bone, and Kat groans desperately: “At last — just at the last — ”

At last — just at the last. So many lost souls in Ukraine are in the same dreadful bind. I read this in a book long ago and I thought never again. No one could do that again. It’s too stupid, too pointless, too cruel. But here we are again. Trench warfare in the 21st century, and televising it has just made people more blind to the horror. I have nothing but contempt for those that won’t even talk about peace now, however humiliating. They just don’t get it. Sometimes you just lose, and Ukraine has lost this hideous reincarnation of World War I. You can call for starting World War III out of the ashes, but this war is done. Let Ukrainian men go home and let these western meddlers go fuck themselves. Who will be the last man to die, till all is quiet on the eastern front?