A Lot Going On

A lot has been going on over the past few days. The British got a new Prime minister, Queen Elizabeth passed, Charles became the King of England, (if anyone thinks that UK news falls on deaf eyes and blind eyes in America, they haven’t been paying attention), the NFL regular season started and Trump investigation/scandal number “hey, even I lost track” broke; just to mention a few. In that storm it is easy to lose track of the war in Ukraine but that would be a mistake.

Without getting into a lot of military analysis that is both better covered elsewhere and I lack the expertise to comment on, Ukraine launched what is at least initially a successful counterattack taking back much of the territory Russia had seized to date.

While war, unlike baseball, is a “game” that you would rather play away as opposed to at home; Ukraine has a home field advantage in that its troops are fighting for their country on their turf.

Leadership is also a factor and while Putin sits back in his bubble in Moscow, Zelenskyy is in the target zone. Zelenskyy looks much more like a then young Princess Elizabeth or Winston Churchill putting their skin in the danger zone and refusing to leave during World War II.

The biggest factor is the support Ukraine has received from the Joe Biden/American-led coalition. As long as that aid keeps flowing the Ukrainians have a good shot. (How long the “tap remains open and the assistance flowing” is my concern.)

A string of victories in a war is not that dissimilar to a few good offensive half innings in a baseball game. They are great but the game isn’t over until it’s over. (Thanks, Yogi!) Russia has many ways to counter the Ukrainian counteroffensive. Some, like nuclear war, would be a total game changer. In all honesty I’m not that certain a nuclear option would be to Russia’s benefit in a very short long run.

As of this writing it appears that Russia is doubling down on its to date failed strategy of making life miserable for the Ukrainian citizens in anticipation that they would rise up and overthrow Zelenskyy. Currently they are taking out power plants and thereby cutting off power to the people. Unfortunately for them, not that kind of power. To date that strategy has simply empowered the stubbornness of the people. I come from a similar ethnic stock and can very much understand that. It’s failing much like Republican efforts at suppressing the Black vote is failing. It’s kind of the: I’ll show you attitude.

For the moment in America we need to continue our support of Ukraine while keeping the news from there on the “front page”. That doesn’t mean we can’t congratulate the Dodgers on being the first to clinch a post season spot, or cheer for my Rays as they try to earn one. Oh, and also from the other side of the pond I did miss Premier League soccer (hey, I’m an American) this weekend and look forward to its return.

A lot is going on and I’ll try to follow as much of it as I can.

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