"CrossTalk: Start of the end?"
RT.com (January 13, 2023)
Former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, never the smartest people in the room, warn that ‘time is not on Ukraine’s side.’ They are actually right, but for the wrong reasons. They are perfectly happy to see the Ukraine conflict continue.
CrossTalking with Lionel, Scott Ritter, and John Kavulich.
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[01:19] Scott Ritter: "Time isn't on Ukraine's side. They had a good run this summer. It's like a heroin addict getting some fresh heroin. They got injected with a hundred billion dollars of Western military and financial assistance. They had a high, and it has ended. There's no more drugs. And so they're crashing. Russia, on the other hand, has spent the last four months rebuilding its miliary capability. It has restructured their command staff to support large, broad based military operations that are going to begin very soon. Time isn't on Ukraine's side. Russia is getting ready to deliver the hammer. The West has nothing left to feed their junkie, and it's Game, Set, Match.""
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07:32 Scott Ritter: "... Let me quick jump to what John had said earlier about definitions and such. Well, with all due respect, the United States and Europe no longer get to participate in the lexicon of the European conflict. They think they can, by providing money and weapons and such. But Russia will not negotiate with the West to end this. The West has lost all credibility after what Merkel and Hollande have said. ..."
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Peter Lavelle interjects asking Scott to elaborate on this
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08:11 Scott Ritter: "Simply put, the Minsk Accords which were entered into in 2014-2015 were supposed to create a ceasefire and a set of conditions that would have the Donbas remain within Ukrainian territorial sovereignty in exchange for changes to the Ukrainian constitution that would would provide a level of cultural and linguistic autonomy to the ethnic Russians. For eight years there was no movement on it and people always say, 'Why not?' There is a narrative that it was Russia's fault. We now know, thanks to Poroshenko the former president of Ukraine, Merkel the former chancellor of Germany and Hollande the former French president, all three of whom were involved in the crafting of Minsk that it was never meant to be implemented, that it was a sham to buy time for Ukraine to rearm with the assistance of NATO for the purpose of engaging in armed conflict with Russia. So Russia will no longer negotiate with these people. Anyone who thinks otherwise is fooling themselves.
"So, if the goal of the West is to continue to fund this conflict in hopes that Ukraine can somehow drive Russia to the negotiating table, that will never happen. Russia is going to win this war regardless. There is only one outcome, and that is a Russian victory. And, frankly speaking, two-hudred-billion dollars of Western aide is not going to be sufficient, as John alluded to, the West is not of one mind. In fact, the longer this conflict goes on, the further fractured the West becomes regarding Ukraine."
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09:50 Peter Lavelle: "I disagree with both you and John. I think Europe is completely irrelevant. Who cares what the Europeans have to say? Washington certainly doesn't care. I mean, if there is going to be a negotiated end to this conflict, it's going to be Moscow and Washington and that is exactly how Washington wants it."
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[16:21] Peter Lavelle “… when this conflict comes to an end the Russians are going to make sure that it doesn’t happen for a very, very long time. Not two years, five years, or ten years. It’s going to be a lot more permanent than that."
[16:36] Scott Ritter “Absolutely. That is why there will be no negotiated settlement. Because a negotiated settlement implies compromise and there is no compromise. The chance for compromise was back in April when Russia was sitting down with the Ukrainians in Istanbul but Boris Johnson [UK Prime Minister] intervened on behalf of NATO to shut it down because NATO thought, wrongly, that Russia was weakened, that Russia couldn’t sustain this. They injected billions of dollars in an effort to pump Ukraine up and that has run its course.
The final elements of the 300,000 [mobilized reservists] have completed their training and are soon to be deployed. Russia has restructured its staff for large-scale warfare. Russia has restructured its defense industry. Russia’s economy is not suffering. The notion that, somehow, Ukraine can suffer more is ludicrous. Their economy is already dead, moribund. It’s on life support with American money. But as Condoleeza Rice and Mr Gates have alluded to, you remove that money and the Ukrainian economy dies.
General Armageddon, Surovikin, is being put in charge of a future air campaign that will destroy Ukraine as a modern nation-state. Understand this, the Russians have made it clear. The opening conditions still apply: de-militarization and de-Nazification. De-militarization is about to occur: the destruction of the Ukrainian armed forces. De-nazification occurs with the death of the Zelensky government. And that will happen at the hands of an aerial campaign, sustained, strategic in nature, that will destroy Ukraine as a modern nation-state. There will be no negotiated end. I don’t know how many times I have to emphasize this. In the end there will be a Tokyo Bay type solution. September 1945, the USS Missouri. The Russians will come up with something equivalent, and a defeated Ukraine will crawl and be compelled to sign a document of unconditional surrender. This is how it ends. Not because Russia wanted it to end this way, but because NATO forced Russia to seek this kind of solution.”
[18:30] . . .