It’s fair to ask of our fellow travelers who happen to live in Russia: How much more of their country’s squalid leadership can they take as they watch their young soldiers get slaughtered in Ukraine?
Russian dictator Vladimir Putin launched an illegal and immoral war against Ukraine in February 2022. He reportedly expected a quick-and-dirty finish to the conflict, with the Ukrainians buckling under the weight of the vastly superior Russian army.
Not so fast. It damn sure didn’t happen.
Now the Ukrainians have launched their long-anticipated “counter offensive” and have retaken much of the land captured by Russian troops.
Putin’s armed forces have performed miserably. Putin surely must know it. Every international observer worth a damn has declared the Russian effort a tactical defeat for Putin.
Back to my question …
Russians cannot possibly be so gullible that they believe the propaganda put forth from the Kremlin about the so-called “success” of the military effort in Ukraine. They have access to worldwide media accounts that tell a stark story of incompetence, malfeasance, desertion among the troops and draftees fleeing the country to avoid conscription into the Russian army.
It all makes me wonder just how much longer Putin can continue to (mis)manage this conflict.
He is being offered a bitter but nonetheless important lesson, which tells him something like this: You do not invade another sovereign country expecting it to roll over just because you demand it.
The Russians should have learned that lesson already in Afghanistan. It reminds me of the truism about “those who fail to learn from their mistakes are doomed to repeat them.”