George Santayana doesn’t blog here

But our readers and commenters here at Op-for.com have taken to heart the prescriptions of the venerated American man of letters, philosopher, essayist and novelist. Thank you to George Warren and others for the reminder. From Austin Bay: Expansionist dictators take until stopped by superior power. For these beasts, peace is war by other means, and the other means always involve deception. Idiots walking. Indeed.

“Do-It-Yourself War”

Very interesting, instructive, and strongly recommended : http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2014/07/11/ukraine_s_do_it_yourself_war Coming soon to a “theater” near you??

Going to war with the Army you have

While some national leaders focus on big defense issues, Mr.  Putin has taken a personal interest in one of the smallest: the rifle. Last  year, his government consolidated rifle manufacturing into one new firm, the  Kalashnikov Corp., named after the AK’s famous inventor, Mikhail  Kalashnikov. “Putin actually goes out and shoots  these things,” Gen. Scales said. More here

America’s enemies have read Alinsky

America’s enemies have read Alinsky. Chickens seem to be roosting. Japan has noticed. SecDef Hagel delivered a passive-aggressive response. Passive-aggressive? Is that like a “Don’t cross this red line” paired with “Ahhh just kiddin’!” Meanwhile… …and in America?

Russian Naval Infantry Regaining Expeditionary Capabilities

The Russian Naval Infantry has been in the news lately. Between it’s deployments to Syria and the Ukraine, the Russians are beginning to realize an expeditionary capability that complements Russia’s diplomatic and economic efforts. France says warship deal with Russia still alive Russian naval infantry will be soon equipped with floating bulletproof body armor Russian Naval Infantry: A Brief History After the Cold War

Bear and Dragon

ETP0802 and I were chatting last night about the possibility that Russia and China would find common ground amid the Czechoslovakian Ukraine crisis, for no better reason than to shank the US while of course advancing their own interests. And so they have: Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov discussed Ukraine by telephone with his Chinese counterpart, Wang Yi, on Monday, and claimed they had “broadly coinciding points of view” on the situation there, according to a ministry statement. Fair enough, since we all look out for our own interests, yet it is clear and growing clearer that both countries are […]

Dug In… Again

Looking waaaaay back into the Op-For archives to the Russian encroachment on Georgia in 2008, we have this– Dug In. Now, Georgia (the country, not the state) was and is far removed from the US/NATO orbit. But Ukraine directly borders NATO states. Remember who the “champion digger” is.

Meanwhile: In the Sudetenland…

Nothing good is happening. Russia did not respond directly to charges of new troop movements, saying only that any action it was taking was within the confines of existing Russia-Ukraine agreements to protect Russia’s Crimean naval base at Sevastapol. “As you know, we have an agreement with Ukraine on the presence of the Russian Black Sea Fleet,” said Vitaly Churkin, Russia’s U.N. ambassador. “We are acting within the framework of that agreement.” This just in– SecDef plans massive cuts to Army!

“Medieval” in Ukraine

A very interesting and instructive article: Really, it turned medieval. Protesters shot fireworks with makeshift launchers. In combination with throwing stones and using slingshots, they overwhelmed disoriented Berkut special forces units, who were pelted with flying objects as fireworks exploded around them. Protesters wore military helmets and carried makeshift—or captured—shields. Wooden boards were used to protect their lower legs from shrapnel the police taped to exploding stun grenades. It’s not how I’d like to locate and close with, but it’s very effective especially when coupled by the volunteer auxiliary corps, as described further in the article. The ostensibly weaker side […]

Out with a Bang

… Or two. Now that’s sure to trigger some good old fashioned scratch-a-Russian-find-a-Tatar state reprisals. (Did anyone catch the name of the district in Volgograd where the bombing took place??) Who’s laying bets that 2014 will be even more lively than its immediate predecessor?