This mammoth and foolish stratcomm operation has further discredited Western intel and governments. Keep in mind that the first claims of a Russian invasion being imminent promised it would come in mid-late December. News organizations relying on unnamed sources — that is, ‘data’ impossible to confirm or non-data — and government officials made the earliest warnings, and nothing happened. Then these same sources moved that date back to mid-January. The latest date is by the end of March. It is very important to note that both the April 2021 buildup of forces near Ukraine and today’s buildup near Ukraine and Belarus are at least in good part the preparations for mid-February joint Russian-Belarussian military maneuvers. This is mentioned in Ukrainian and, of course, Russian media, but never in Western media or by Western officials (https://vesti.ua/strana/amerikantsy-pokazali-sputnikovye-foto-vojsk-i-tehniki-rf-u-granits-ukrainy). It is equally, perhaps more important to note that these statements have not just thrown many in Ukraine into panic, driven key foreign and domestic funds to flee from the country, and consternated the Ukrainian leadership which does not see any imminent threat, but they have made combatants on both sides of the ‘line of contact’ nervous, tense, trigger-happy, and inclined to extract some blood before the ‘Russian invasion’ begins. On the side of the breakaway DNR and LNR, all this anxiousness is compounded by a belief by some — radical nationalists and criminal elements — that it would be to their advantage to have the population evacuated and the Russian army deal a blow to Kiev’s forces on the other side of the line. On the Ukrainian side, some in the Ukrainian army and its allied illegally armed formations like the National Korpus and Volunteer Ukrainian Corps (led by neofascist Dmitro Yarosh (who is advisor to the Chief of the General Staff of the Ukrainian Armed Forces) might decide if a Russian invasion is inevitable as the president of the United States and his underlings state with full certainty, then why not unleash a pre-emptive attack to make the DNR-LNR ‘traitors’, ‘terrorists’, and ‘vatniks’ pay a price before Russia’s tanks move in.
Indeed, on February 18th we saw an escalation in fighting to a level unprecedented in years (OSCE SMM Report, 18 February 2022, p.1, https://www.osce.org/files/2022-02-18%20Daily%20Report_ENG.pdf?itok=23379). The escalation began with what appears to have been attacks on at least eight DNR-LNR civilian areas (https://vesti.ua/strana/obostrenie-na-donbasse-18-fevralya-obnovlyaetsya – go to the bottom of the feed to the morning to see the first attacks of the day); all targeting the DNR-LNR. The map showing the localities attacked, so more attacks hitting the DNR-LNR side of the line than Kiev’s side (OSCE SMM Report, 18 February 2022, p.2). The OSCE’s monitoring group noted illegal movements of troops and equipment on both sides of the line (OSCE SMM Report, 18 February 2022, p.3). It is clear that both sides are now violating the ceasefire agreement with abandon.
As I have noted elsewhere, “(t)he most likely path to war is the one that occurred in August 2008 in Georgia, when a gradual escalation in fighting between a Western-backed state and Russian-backed separatists. The fighting escalated until Georgian president Mikheil Saakashvili snapped, invaded, and bombed sleeping Tskhinvali and killed 19 Russian soldiers, whereupon Moscow had no choice but to ‘invade.’ Who will snap first now: the separatists, Kiev’s neofascist element, Zelenskiy, or Putin?” You can see the tit-fr-tat escalation in Georgia 2008 here: https://gordonhahn.com/2017/08/03/a-chronology-of-escalation-leading-up-to-the-august-2008-south-ossetiyan-five-day-war-2003-2008/
In the end, if Russia does invade for justifiable reasons — as it did in Georgia in 2008, Donbass in 2014 and, with some justification, but as a whole the unjust Crimean capture and annexation — it will not matter. In the new media controlled West, the overwhelming majority of the West’s population will never know. So Ukrainian noe-fascists could very well provoke DNR-LNR forces, sparking an outbreak of full warfare again in Donbass, forcing the Russians to invade once the now much better-equipped Ukrainian army and affiliated neo-fascist battalions begin to route the much smaller separatist forces as occurred in 2014 and 2015 twice.
A SELECTED LIST OF FAILED PREDICTIONS OF RUSSIAN INVASION
November 29, 2021 – Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelenskiy claims there is a Russian-backed planned coup in Kiev on December 1-2. No coup occurs. Anti-Russian domestic opposition forces hold demonstrations in Kiev instead as Zelenskiy gives ‘Hero of Ukraine’ medal to a neo-fascist who openly acknowledged he violates the Donbass ceasefire with mortar attacks (https://gordonhahn.com/2021/12/21/zelenskiys-theater-of-simulacra-update/)
January 14, 2022 – US ‘intelligence’ claimed Putin had sent saboteurs into eastern Ukraine to create a provocation that could serve as a pretext for invasion, a false flag operation in for Donbass, apparently (https://foreignpolicy.com/2022/01/14/russia-provocation-war-pretext-false-flag-ukraine-eastern-us-intelligence/).
January 21 – Former National Security Council official and nationalist Ukrainian-American Alexander Windman, who lied in congressional testimony in the hearings leading to Donald Trump’s second impeachment, is published as author of the lead article in America’s leading foreign policy journal, Foreign Affairs in which he predicts an all-out invasion of Ukraine (https://www.foreignaffairs.com/articles/ukraine/2022-01-21/day-after-russia-attacks?utm_medium=promo_email&utm_source=special_send&utm_campaign=ukraine_prospects&utm_content=20220211&utm_term=promo-email-prospects). Windman was once offered the post of Ukrainian defense minister.
January 22 – British intelligence claims the Kremlin is developing plans to install a pro-Russian leader in Ukraine — and had already chosen a potential candidate (https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/22/world/europe/ukraine-russia-coup-britain.html).
January 26 – The NATO-affiliated and Russiafakegate-affiliated Atlantic Council held an invasion fest in which four of six partipants plus the moderator were certain a Russian invasion would occur within days and discussed various scenarios, including invading Kiev (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=swyqBkF6dpk&ab_channel=AtlanticCouncil).
February 3 – Bloomberg briefly posted an article and title indicating Russia had begun Invading Ukraine. It later pulled it claiming it had been posted accidentally (https://nypost.com/2022/02/04/bloomberg-accidentally-reports-that-russia-invaded-ukraine/).
February 4 – “Likely thinking about fabricating a video of Ukrainian attack on Russian territory or ethnic Russians” (https://archive.fo/Kok1h; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uDflICQDw1w&ab_channel=FoxNews; www.state.gov/briefings/department-press-briefing-february-3-2022/; and https://twitter.com/mtracey/status/1489370596370755587).
February 5 – The German newspaper Bild reports, citing intelligence sources, reports, according to Ekho Moskvy: “(T)he Russian army, after the alleged invasion of Ukraine, intends to destroy Ukrainian troops in the field, and then besiege major cities and activate their agents stationed there. They were allegedly tasked with creating a pro-Russian leadership that would agree on the surrender of cities. After that, they will create a so-called “people’s council” there from representatives who have passed the selection of special services and which will declare the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine illegitimate. Russia…intends to create a puppet regime there after the invasion of Ukraine and eventually join the country to the Union State with Belarus. After the attack of the Russian army and taking control of all major cities, Moscow plans to create a so-called “people’s council” in Ukraine. The puppet parliament, which will declare the Verkhovna Rada illegitimate, will include people verified by the Russian special services. The new government installed by the Kremlin should be the same in Ukraine, the newspaper writes. It will declare a state of emergency and set up a system of camps for dissenting Ukrainians. The new government will also prepare the conditions for a referendum on joining Russia. The result, according to the German media, will be the inclusion of Ukraine in the union state of Russia and Belarus” (https://echo.msk.ru/news/2975674-echo.html).
REALITY CHECK? February 6 – Ukraine’s defense Minister Alexei Reznikov tells the Italian newspaper La Repubblika in regard to such reports of imminent Russian invasion: “”Sooner or later it may happen, but there is no momentary risk. First they talked about January as the date of a likely invasion, now about February, someone is already talking about spring” (https://vesti.ua/strana/reznikov-ne-vidit-siyuminutnoj-ugrozy-agressii-so-storony-rossii).
February 6 – Reuters reported its unidentified “senior Biden administration officials” claim that Russia has already amassed 70% of the resources needed for a full-scale invasion, and it could take place from mid-February to the end of March. [Odd that. The invasion was supposed to have taken place as much as 7 weeks earlier and yet the Russians are only 70 percent prepared} In recent days, the “sources” claimed Russia has allegedly increased the number of battalion tactical groups on the border with Ukraine from 60 to 83, with 14 more on the way. The “sources” added that the Russian army could capture Kiev within two days of fighting. In such an event, the Russian army could lose up to 10,000 soldiers, the Ukrainian army – up to 25,000, civilian casualties could be up to 50,000 people and 1-5 million will be refugees (https://archive.fo/9u5ZJ and https://finance.yahoo.com/news/russian-forces-70-level-needed-203800873.html?fr=sycsrp_catchall). Informed sources told Reuters, the Financial Times, The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times that preparations for the invasion are being completed (https://echo.msk.ru/news/2975962-echo.html).
February 6 – “We’re in the window now.” US NS advisor, who could be indicted by special counsel Durham for his involvement in the Russiagate fake, stated: “”We are in the window. Any day now, Russia could take military action against Ukraine, or it could be a couple of weeks from now, or Russia could choose to take the diplomatic path instead.” “It could happen as soon as tomorrow, or it could take some weeks yet. He has put himself in a position with military deployments to be able to act aggressively against Ukraine at any time now”(https://news.yahoo.com/russian-attack-ukraine-possible-day-182921761.html).
February 10 – Ukraine’s former KGB, the SBU, got into the act claiming it had prevented a false flag operation in which Russian recruited Ukrainian criminals to fly to Russia and recruit people to carry out an attack in Russia. The Washington Examiner endorsed the SBU claim as credible, even though the SBU provided no evidence and presented no arrestees (www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/decoding-ukraines-claim-that-it-just-prevented-a-russian-false-flag-attack). The same article used as support for its endorsement of the SBU claim an article in a Russian newspaper citing sources in the FSB that had the Russian security agency had re-characterized an August 2021 bus explosion as a Ukrainian terrorist attack Not that the Russian newspaper report is just that — a newspaper report — and only cites “sources” in the FSB, not an official statement from the FSB, no less a charge from a top Russian official accusing Ukraine (https://www.mk.ru/incident/2022/01/26/istochnik-prichinoy-vzryva-avtobusa-v-voronezhe-byla-ukrainskaya-diversiya.html). Presumably, the Putin regime would make a lot of noise about this, if it was to serve as part of the evidence of Ukrainian terrorism in Russia.
February 11 – Citing CIA sources, Bloomberg reports Russia will invade on February 15th (https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-02-11/u-s-warns-of-risk-that-russia-moves-against-ukraine-next-week).
February 11 – US President Biden reports Russian invasion is likely to begin on February 16th (www.politico.com/newsletters/national-security-daily/2022/02/11/putin-could-attack-ukraine-on-feb-16-biden-told-allies-00008344).
February 11 – US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan says Russian invasion of Ukraine could occur before the end of the Winter Olympic Games on February 20th (www.politico.com/newsletters/national-security-daily/2022/02/11/putin-could-attack-ukraine-on-feb-16-biden-told-allies-00008344). On February 12th Ukrainian President Volodomyr Zelenskiy reacted to a question regarding the recent US ‘intelligence’ claims this way: “They even are naming already particular dates. We understand all the risks, and we understand that there are these risks. If you or other people have additional information regarding a one hundred percent (likelihood of) invasion, beginning from February 16th by the Russian Federation into Ukraine, give this information to us, please” (https://vesti.ua/strana/zelenskij-nikogo-ne-boimsya-bez-paniki-vse-pod-kontrolem and http://www.politico.com/news/2022/02/11/white-house-warns-russian-invasion-threat-is-immediate-00008299).
February 13 – Russian invasion of Ukraine is ‘pretty evident,’ Gen. Keane warns (www.youtube.com/watch?v=4RNDLPY1TIk&ab_channel=FoxNews). In the wake of all the February 11-13 Western hysteria and meeting of the entire Ukrainian political elite, the head of Ukraine’s Security Council summed up the events by reasserting that “there are no preconditions” for a Russian invasion of Ukraine (https://vesti.ua/strana/kiev-ne-vidit-predposylok-dlya-vtorzheniya-rf-na-territoriyu-ukrainy-danilov).
February 17 – US Secretary of State described a Russian invasion as “imminent”, even, in Blinken’s words, “unfolding” and provided horrific description of Russian bombs falling “all across Ukraine”, an assault on Kiev, and massive cyber attacks (www.foxnews.com/live-news/ukraine-russia-border). Politico reports that the prediction about February 16th as the ‘Russian invasion’ date was “always over hyped,” though the author never told his readership of that until February 16th had passed and is a former director of the NATO-affiliated Atlantic Council’s Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security where he worked on military issues and U.S. foreign policy. The new date for the imminent invasion will be “shortly after February 20th.” The article suddenly lets readers in on a little secret that would have undermined the ‘imminent Russian invasion/troops amassed on Ukraine’s border narrative. That secret is that Russia had planned long ago a series of winter training exercises in Belarus and Russia’s Western Military District and already had 100,000 troops in the latter near not “on” the border since April. Russia’s and Belarus’s official statements of full withdrawal of Russian troops after the maneuvers are complete was also mention in the US press for the first time. Although Politico noted that US writer Michael Kofman said “where Russian forces do or don’t go after Feb. 20 will provide insight into Putin’s real intentions. ‘It’s a useful date to see if they’re lying or they’re not. When someone lies, it tells you a lot,'” Politico characterized as ‘overhype’ the Biden claim of an invasion on February 16th, not to mention –and it wasn’t — the numerous Western claims of an invasion occurring in December and January. Politico also reiterates the misleading idea that Putin might invade before February 20th despite the risk of staining Beijing’s Olympics as evidence by his invasion of Georgia during the 2008 Beijing Summer Games. (www.politico.com/newsletters/national-security-daily/2022/02/16/feb-16-was-always-a-distraction-00009532). Of course, Putin ‘invaded’ because Georgia invaded its 15-year breakaway region of South Ossetiya using as its opening salvo hundreds of inaccurate Grad rockets fired on a sleeping city, killing tens, if not hundreds of civilians and 19 Russian peacekeepers. Most readers would not know this because US media never mentions it, just as it does not mention the Western lie now insisted on for eight years that the Maidan ‘revolution’ occurred and was justified because then Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych ordered his ‘Berkut’ riot police to shoot demonstrators killing a hundred or more. In fact, as became clear within months of the February 2014 events, the Maidan protest’s radical nationalist wing carried out the snipers’ massacre, firing on both police and demonstrators (https://gordonhahn.com/2016/03/09/the-real-snipers-massacre-ukraine-february-2014-updatedrevised-working-paper/; https://www.researchgate.net/publication/337947623_The_far_right_the_Euromaidan_and_the_Maidan_massacre_in_Ukraine; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l2UhRc_uoUI&ab_channel=%D0%9F%D1%80%D0%B0%D0%B2%D0%B4%D0%B0%D0%94%D0%B0%D0%B2%D0%B8%D0%B4%D0%B0%D0%96%D0%B2%D0%B0%D0%BD%D0%B8%D0%B8; and https://24tv.ua/chastina_materialiv_znikla_ne_hotili_viyti_na_zamovnikiv__ryaboshapka_pro_spravi_maydanu_n1272252).
February 18 – Biden, citing US intelligence, says that Putin has made up his mind to undertake an invasion of Ukraine that Biden said would begin three days earlier (https://news.yahoo.com/putin-decided-attack-ukraine-biden-222250412.html?fr=sycsrp_catchall).
February 19 – Britain’s foreign minister stated that Russia could drag out the pre-invasion period for a month bu that Ukraine could face “the worst scenario of Russian invasion next week” (https://strana.news/news/377818-liz-trass-zajavila-chto-na-sledujushchej-nedele-ukrainu-mozhet-zhdat-khudshij-stsenarij-vtorzhenija.html).
February 19 – US Secretary of State tells Russia’s Dozhd’ TV that the US is confident its intlligence that Russia will invade Ukraine is accurate (https://tvrain.ru/teleshow/vechernee_shou/blinken-548164/).
February 20 – CBS and leading Russiagate shills CNN, Natasha Bertrand and Jim Sciutto report that US official and intelligence sources say Putin has given the order to attack (https://strana.news/news/377922-rossijskie-vojska-uzhe-poluchili-prikaz-o-vtorzhenii-v-ukrainu-cbs.html and https://edition.cnn.com/2022/02/20/politics/us-intel/index.html). Ukraine’s defense minister says Ukraine sees no Russian attack force near Ukraine’s borders (https://vesti.ua/strana/reznikov-zayavil-chto-ne-vidit-formirovaniya-gruppirovki-vojsk-rf-na-granitsah).
A final point for all the claims by Western sources of impending Russian false flag provocations to justify an invasion (there was one said by Russian Defense Minister Shoigu to be in the works by Ukrainians, as I note elsewhere), the only side in this conflict to carry out a false flag operation was the Maidan protest’s neofascist elements, who now hold seats in the Maidan regime the Maidan protests and false flag op brought to power–in other words, today’s Ukrainian regime in Kiev. And the West and Kiev have been covering up for eight years. And you thought only Russia kills and starts wars.