Ukraine

Thaluikhain

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Well, the Russians are fond of their missle ships. Notably the Moskva.


Yes I know the US also has guided missle cruisers too but Russia really likes the "Stick a bunch of missles on a vehicle" thing.
I've read that this was due to different ideas of how WW3 would play out. No idea if it was true, but interesting, none the less.

NATO tended to lean towards thinking that WW3 would be a protracted conflict, with ships taking part in multiple engagements, so they had to be built to take and repair damage over a long period. The USSR lent towards WW3 being sharp and intense, there was no emphasis on the ability to repair because the war would be won or lost before then. So lots of missiles you can fire of all at once, and if machinery broke down you needed to go back to port for a replacement.
 
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Terminal Blue

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We need food aid for Great Britain, what a tragedy.
Squirrel meat was a bit of a thing a few years ago, and you can definitely still find it in some restaurants.

The irony is, unless you live in a rural area where grey squirrel culling is normal, squirrel meat is actually very expensive. At the end of the day though, it's just game meat with the added advantage of being from an invasive pest species.

I don't think anyone looks at wild rabbit and thinks "holy shit, I wanna eat that myxomatosis-infested little fucker" but I don't think anyone would blink at a restaurant serving rabbit.
 
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Baffle

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Rats with fluffy tails.

You'd think we'd let capybara become an invasive species, massive.
 

Baffle

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They're a lot dumber and less genial than rats.
It's always nice to see either when I'm out and about. It wasn't nice to find the latter living under my kitchen floor. Massive.

Edit: They weren't living there as such when I found them, that's how I found them.
 
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Terminal Blue

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I dunno. I've seen squirrels get past some really complex obstacle courses to get to bird feeders.
I think I made that seem like more than an insult than it was. Being less intelligent or genial than a rat is hardly an insult in mammalian terms. Rats are probably up there with dogs in terms of animal intelligence.
 

Baffle

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I think I made that seem like more than an insult than it was. Being less intelligent or genial than a rat is hardly an insult in mammalian terms. Rats are probably up there with dogs in terms of animal intelligence.
I mean, a squirrel outwitted my dog by running up the other side of a tree. Like teleportation, but using your legs.
 
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CM156

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I think I made that seem like more than an insult than it was. Being less intelligent or genial than a rat is hardly an insult in mammalian terms. Rats are probably up there with dogs in terms of animal intelligence.
Rats can show affection to humans. Which puts them above squirrels who have never as so little as returned my letters.
 

Silvanus

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Reports are that Bakhmut may be falling before too long.

* After Russia took Soledar in mid-January, they near-surrounded Bakhmut on 3 sides.
* Ukraine had started solidying positions further West, and destroying bridges, indicating that they may have been preparing an eventual withdrawal.
* Currently, hundreds of soldiers on both sides are dying every day in the fighting for Bakhmut alone. Estimates are around 200-300 Ukrainian and as many as 1,100 Russian per day. If Russia does capture the city, it will have been at a cost of multiple tens of thousands of soldiers. Some analysts believe that the sheer cost of personnel to Russia would make the capture a Pyrrhic victory by now.

This single city has been the site of the most protracted, intense fighting of the war, with the possible exception of Mariupol. The civilian population has dropped from a pre-war 70,000 to ~4,000, mostly in bunkers. Large swathes of the city itself have been reduced to rubble and is borderline unliveable after months of constant Russian missile and rocket bombardment.

Bakhmut is not hugely strategically important. It's not a transport hub, and its infrastructure has been essentially destroyed. Its only realistic strategic value would be as a closer mustering ground for attacking further West. Most view it as a symbolic or political target for both Russia and Ukraine-- though I've also seen it suggested that Ukraine has been holding on so doggedly precisely because Russia was losing so much more than they were in the battle to take it. "Never interrupt your enemy when he's making a mistake", to paraphrase Napoleon.
 
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The Rogue Wolf

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Bakhmut is not hugely strategically important. It's not a transport hub, and its infrastructure has been essentially destroyed. Its only realistic strategic value would be as a closer mustering ground for attacking further West. Most view it as a symbolic or political target for both Russia and Ukraine-- though I've also seen it suggested that Ukraine has been holding on so doggedly precisely because Russia was losing so much more than they were in the battle to take it. "Never interrupt your enemy when he's making a mistake", to paraphrase Napoleon.
I can envision Putin becoming so desperate for a "win" to wave in front of his populace that he demanded an ever-increasing push to take the territory. And if he's been misled about the condition of his forces, by either his own ego or generals terrified of incurring his wrath, he may be clueless as to how Pyrrhic a "victory" would be.
 
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Silvanus

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I can envision Putin becoming so desperate for a "win" to wave in front of his populace that he demanded an ever-increasing push to take the territory. And if he's been misled about the condition of his forces, by either his own ego or generals terrified of incurring his wrath, he may be clueless as to how Pyrrhic a "victory" would be.
You may well be right about the domestic need for a "win". However with the battles for both Soledar and Bakhmut, the majority of the Russian forces are Wagner hirees (mostly convicts), not official Russian soldiers.

That will mean that the Generals and officers within the traditional army structure will not be in a position to report (accurately or falsely). And Prigozhin has so far been quite candid about how much difficulty they're having in Bakhmut-- he doesn't seem to falsely report success often if at all.

On the other hand, if the majority of casualties are convicts, it also probably means the Russian government regards them as ever more expendable. They'll likely tolerate a far higher casualty rate among them than they would among trained soldiers.
 
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Silvanus

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I always thought that was Sun Tzu
I can see a few sites claiming Sun Tzu said that, but never with actual page numbers or proper citations (and I'm not going to read Art of War for this, sorry). Quote Investigator says that it was first attributed to Napoleon in a 1836 history book but the actual first usage isn't recorded.
 

Dalisclock

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I can envision Putin becoming so desperate for a "win" to wave in front of his populace that he demanded an ever-increasing push to take the territory. And if he's been misled about the condition of his forces, by either his own ego or generals terrified of incurring his wrath, he may be clueless as to how Pyrrhic a "victory" would be.
I'm convinced that when Russia takes Bakhmut we need to rename that phrase to "Putinic Victory" in his honor.

Who am I kidding? If we didn't coin a new word after the battle of the Somme 1916 or some of the bloodbaths of WW2 this probably won't make a difference.

Bakhmut is not hugely strategically important. It's not a transport hub, and its infrastructure has been essentially destroyed. Its only realistic strategic value would be as a closer mustering ground for attacking further West. Most view it as a symbolic or political target for both Russia and Ukraine-- though I've also seen it suggested that Ukraine has been holding on so doggedly precisely because Russia was losing so much more than they were in the battle to take it. "Never interrupt your enemy when he's making a mistake", to paraphrase Napoleon.
If Russia is willing to lose possibly upward of 50k men(so far) trying to take a town that's worth very little on a strategic level, why should Ukraine stop them?

Not to mention it helps pin the Russian military in place and expend their ammo while Ukraine continues to gear up and train for whatever they plan to do in the spring. I'm going to guess it's probably going to be striking south from Kherson to cut Crimea off from the rest of the Donbass in preparation for taking it, as well as moving Ukrainian Artillery closer to the Kerch bridge so they can drop it into the sea for good. At least, that's what I would do if I were in charge of War planning for Ukraine *Adjusts Armchair*.
 
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Silvanus

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If Russia is willing to lose possibly upward of 50k men(so far) trying to take a town that's worth very little on a strategic level, why should Ukraine stop them?

Not to mention it helps pin the Russian military in place and expend their ammo while Ukraine continues to gear up and train for whatever they plan to do in the spring. I'm going to guess it's probably going to be striking south from Kherson to cut Crimea off from the rest of the Donbass in preparation for taking it, as well as moving Ukrainian Artillery closer to the Kerch bridge so they can drop it into the sea for good. At least, that's what I would do if I were in charge of War planning for Ukraine *Adjusts Armchair*.
It pins the Ukrainian military too, however-- expending men and materials that would otherwise be useful in a counteroffensive. The Russian mindset may be that they can maintain attrition longer, or that they simply don't count the losses from convicts while Ukraine is losing trained soldiers.
 
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