President Vladimir Putin will have to put on a show of force on May 9th, which is celebrated as Victory Day in Russia, in order to give the impression that he has won the war in Ukraine.
However, after more than two months of fighting, the conflict has deviated greatly from Russia’s original plans. It is possible that Putin may use the day of May 9 to declare a symbolic “win” over Ukraine, in order to boost his manipulative and sanction-weary audience.
On this day in 1945, Nazi Germany was forced to submit by Soviet forces (the day after its capitulation to the Western allies, which is why the UK, US, and their allies commemorate victory on May 8).
The German Invasion of The USSR.
First, Moscow teamed up with Nazi Berlin in an effort to divvy up eastern Europe between the two dictators. However, once the German invasion of the USSR in 1941 destroyed this relationship, the Soviet human effort to defeat Germany — backed by large amounts of food aid and military equipment from the UK, US, and Canada — was crucially important to victory. Tens of millions of Soviet soldiers and civilians were killed during the Second World War, many of them in the then-Soviet republics of Belarus and Ukraine.
Stalin, the Soviet leader, killed more people than Hitler did during his whole reign, both in his own nation and in the countries he occupied. The Soviet Union’s atrocities were compared to those committed by the Nazis in Russia in the past, although it is now illegal to do so. For the May 9 victory parade, flowers are still placed on Stalin’s grave in Red Square.
How Significant Is Putin’s May 9th Speech?
The Ultra-Nationalist Vladimir Putin Believes that Russia’s Territorial and Political Goals Should Not Be Limited to The Country’s Internationally Recognized Borders. Vladimir Putin, Other than Russia, None of The Former Soviet Union’s Republics Are Seen as Sovereign by The Russian People — Particularly by Putin.
However, Russia Requires a Strong Army to Maintain or Reclaim an Empire Because It Lacks Favorable Means to Entice Other Countries. All Communist Party Secretaries-General Have Stood on Lenin’s Monument on Red Square to Acknowledge Russia’s Military Strength as It Passed by Or Flew Over Over the Years. May 9 Is Designed to Show Off to Home Crowds, Frighten the Opposition, and Gratify Dictators of The Day.
Putin Takes Ukraine Very Seriously (but, Fortunately, for The Future of Ukraine, Even More, Personal to Ukrainians). Vladimir Putin Sees It as A Betrayal and A Historical Anomaly Because of Its “waywardness” and Its Very Existence. when Diplomacy (read: Coercion) Failed to Stop Ukraine’s Western Ambitions, Putin Felt He Had No Choice but To Use Brute Force to “establish Rightness.”
The Extent to Which Russia’s Supposed Modernized.
However, He Was Unaware of The Extent to Which Russia’s Supposed Modernized and Professionalized Fighting Force Had Become Corrupt and Incompetent. Ukraine’s Valiant Fight for Independence Is an Inspiration to The World.
However, They Wouldn’t Have Been Able to Do It without The Accidental Assistance of The Russian Troops. Russia’s Political Structure Is so Hierarchical that The Rest of Putin’s Elites Are Unlikely to Be Aware of The Current Situation.
Is There Any Significance to This for The War’s Outcome?
Russia’s Military Leaders Must Do Something — Anything — After Their Humiliating Failures in The First Two Months of This War if Western Commentators Are True that Putin Demands Triumph by Victory Day. At Least 15,000 Russian Soldiers Were Killed in The Battle for The Ukrainian Capital of Kyiv, Significantly More than In Any Other Post-Soviet Conflict (Chechnya, Georgia, Syria, and Ukraine 2014) Put Together.
Instead of Focusing on The Rest of The Black Sea Coast, Russia’s Plan B (or More Likely Plan F or G) Is to Redouble Its Efforts and Ground Forces in Ukraine’s East. This May or May Not Be Possible in Time for The May 9 Parade. Military Supplies Continue to Flow to The Ukrainians, and Their Morale Remains High Despite Kyiv’s Control of The War’s Information.
What Is the Greatest Threat?
However, the Greatest Threat (from the East) Is yet To Come, and Fighting in Donbas Will Heat up In the Coming Weeks as Russia Attempts to Seize More Area. However, the Issue Remains as To Whether Moscow Will Want to Extend the Offensive Beyond Its Minimal Territorial Gains or Chose to “freeze” Positions on The Ground — Dig Into Ukrainian Territory, and Sue Ukraine for Peace as The War Enters a New, More Static, Phase.
Moldova’s Russian-controlled Breakaway Region, Transnistria, Has Made Recent Attempts to Destabilize the Country. It’s Clear that Both Parties Are Actively Preparing for A More Advantageous Negotiation Stance. at This Point in Time, It Appears that Neither Side Has the Resources or Manpower to Turn the Tide of War in Their Favor and Win the War Decisively.
Putin Appears to Have a Plan for Ukraine.
Russia’s Tactics May Have Evolved, but Its Main Objective Has Not. as A Result of This Ambition, Ukraine Will No Longer Be Able to Make the Option to Be a European and Westward-Facing Country Independent of The Rest of The European Union. The Good News Is That It Is Impossible to Achieve the Goal. Russia Will Never Be Able to Subjugate Ukraine Again, Either Physically or Politically.
neither On the Battlefield nor In Politics Has Russia Shown Enough Promise to Merit Such a Designation as A Superpower. the Bad News Is that Russia Hasn’t Figured This out Yet and Will Keep Killing Its Own Soldiers and A Disproportionate Number of Ukrainians. In Any Case, Russia Is Aware that This Isn’t Just a Conflict with Ukraine; It’s a Conflict with The Rules-Based International Order, from Which It Has Reaped No Benefits.
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Perceptions of Ordinary Russians.
for More than A Decade, Russia Has Been Making This Claim. Nato Is Aware of This but Refuses to Officially Acknowledge It in Order to Avoid Being Dragged Into the Conflict (discussions with Nato in Private Are a Different Matter). As Long as Sanctions Are in Place, Europe May Continue to Reduce Its Reliance on Russian Energy, and If Foreign Investors Are Discouraged,
the Kremlin Will Run out Of Cash by The End of The Year, Which Could Lead to A Shift in Policy. only After May 9th. by Then, neither The “progress” of The War nor The Perceptions of Ordinary Russians Will Have Changed. As a result, May 9 Will Once Again Be a Display of Power. but It’ll Be Hollow. as I Believe, Putin’s Gut Is Churning as A Result.