|Dangerous and Inept||
15 March 2023
Cogito Ergo Non Serviam
Yesterday over the Black Sea in international airspace, the Russian Air Force had two fighter jets harassing a US reconnaisance drone. Thanks to aggressive and inept flying, one of the fighters clipped the propeller of the drone. One of them dropped fuel on the drone, a juvenile act that had zero impact. The Russians deny the collision took place, but the US has video from the drone showing that the American story is closer to the objective truth. This was part of the Russian strategy to force the West to drop its support of Ukraine. They have miscalculated again. At the same time, it is the kind of behavior that will draw NATO deeper into the conflict, which is not to the advantage of the aggressors in Moscow.
According to the Pentagon, the drone was loitering over the Black Sea. For those not in military intelligence, that means it was flying around more or less in the same place gathering data. The Russians obviously do not want the US learning anything about the actions of the Russian army in Ukraine. Losing tens of thousands in a fight over an unimportant town like Bakhmut is embarrassing at best. The long-shot hope was that the buzzing of the drone would get the US to move the drone out of range.
Instead, the Russian jet hit the drone, and the US made the decision to crash it into the Black Sea. Before it hit the water, the Pentagon said the drone had wiped its software. In the event the Russians recover it first, there will be little for them to learn. Naturally, they can reverse engineer the drone itself, but given the effectiveness of Russian intelligence in this kind of matter, one expects they already have the blueprints.
The Kremlin is not displeased with the incident, however. American and Russian troops are not shooting at one another, and that is not what the Russians want. The affair here is a signal to the Americans in particular and the West in general that there is a lot of opportunity for this to escalate. The Russian hope is that this threat will encourage those backing Kyiv to reduce or even halt their support.
The world knows that Donald Trump and his wing of the Republican Party are pro-Putin. If Mr. Trump had won the election, the US would be sending aid to Moscow. Since he is out of office, that is not happening. Yet he is trying to make a comeback. If he returns to the Oval Office in 2025, Ukraine will be in deep trouble.
Worse than Mr. Trump and his historic affinity for fascist Russia, is the recent conversion of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis to the pro-Putin line. At the beginning of the war, he was still holding to the line he took in 2015. As a member of Congress then, he urged arming Ukraine against Russia (which had just occupied Crimea).
In response to a questionnaire from Fox News personality (he is not a jornalist) Tucker Carlson, the governor wrote, "While the U.S. has many vital national interests -- securing our borders, addressing the crisis of readiness with our military, achieving energy security and independence, and checking the economic, cultural and military power of the Chinese Communist Party -- becoming further entangled in a territorial dispute between Ukraine and Russia is not one of them,"
The Falklands War was a territorial dispute. Neither Argentina nor Britain was endanger of being removed from the map. The current war is a war for the survival of Ukraine as an independent state. It is a war for the principle that one nation cannot redraw boundaries by sending troops into the territory of another. It is a war for self-determination. It is a war for the future of Europe and the world. With his statement, Mr. DeSantis has shown himself either an idiot in foreign affairs or an unprincipled political hack (and he could be both).
The Russians will continue with this sort of nonsense. The West must respond with more aid to Kyiv and not confrontation. Above all, people like Messrs. Trump and DeSantis need to be kept from power.
© Copyright 2023 by The Kensington Review, Jeff Myhre, PhD, Editor. No part of this publication may be reproduced without written consent. Produced using Ubuntu Linux.