Recently, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen carelessly revealed the devastating cost of the Ukraine war.
“It is estimated that more than 20,000 civilians and 100,000 Ukrainian military personnel have died to date,” she said. The comment drew sharp backlash and the E.C. later deleted the comments from video recordings of the address. The censorship was left unexplained and demonstrated the confusion of the purveyors of the approved narrative.
If Von der Leyen’s estimate is true, that is nearly ten times the number of dead Ukrainian soldiers reported by the Ukrainian government. The E.C. president’s remark shows that even the strongest backers of this bloody and unnecessary war can no longer hide the truth: Ukraine is at risk of losing.
The mainstream media and the Biden administration insist ad nauseam that Ukraine is winning against Russia. But the facts on the ground do not fit the narrative and the administration and media know it. The war hawks know their cynical Ukraine policy has not succeeded in driving Russia out of Ukraine. Tragically, the Ukrainians are the ones who suffer the immense cost of this foreign policy failure. Their nation is ruined for the sake and at the instigation of the globalist American empire.
As Ukraine loses its grip on heavily defended and important crossroads around the city of Bakhmut, the Western press has commenced a campaign to downplay the importance of the loss. Defense Express reports: “UK Defense Intelligence States [t]hat Bakhmut’s capture becomes primarily a symbolic, political objective for Russia.” Last week, the Financial Times published an article entitled: “Hell Just Hell: Ukraine and Russia’s war of attrition over Bakhmut.” As the subtitle of the piece reads, “Soldiers say fighting in and around eastern Donetsk city is reminiscent of first world war-style trench conflict.”
The following information is an indication of the nature of the Ukrainian “victory” over the previous six months.
Ukraine has lost an estimated 20 percent of its territory. At least 22 percent of Ukrainian farmland is under Russian control. These areas are a large part of the territory identified in the Minsk II agreement that were to be governed as autonomous districts. Due to the failure of the Minsk II agreement, Russia declared its Special Military Operations to free these areas from the grip of the Ukrainian government. As of today, it appears Russia has come close to achieving some of its initial goals.
In May 2022, the United Nations Refugee Agency reported that nearly eight million Ukrainians have been internally displaced, with another six million registered as refugees. That number is likely to rise even higher this winter. As a result of the recent Russian missile attacks on the Ukrainian power grid, even more people are fleeing Ukraine. Europe expects hundreds of thousands of Ukrainian refugees this winter due to the nation’s ruined cities. Kiev Mayor Vitali Klitschko may urge an evacuation of his city due to its failures to provide basic services to its population.
CNN reported a month ago that at least 30 percent of Ukrainian power stations are destroyed. BBC reports that six million Ukrainians are without power. EuroNews recently reported that two-thirds of Kiev is without power. An estimated 80 percent of Kiev is without water. News reports declare that Kiev is getting ready to survive without power, water and heating. Ukraine has evacuated cities that have become uninhabitable without heating or power. The World Health Organization warns millions of lives are “under threat” this winter.
Forbes Magazine reports that nearly half of Ukraine is without power. Newsweek reports that Ukraine’s energy giant is running out of equipment to fix power outages. How long is the Ukrainian capital going to function without power?
The Ukrainian Central Bank estimates the nation’s 2022 GDP will decline by 32 percent, inflation will hit 30 percent, and unemployment will reach 30 percent. The New York Times reported Ukraine’s agriculture industry has lost an estimated $23 billion from the war. The International Monetary Fund reports the Ukraine war has led to the worst food shortage since 2008. CNN reports that Ukraine’s communications are entirely dependent on Elon Musk’s Starlink system. If there are troubles with the system, the country goes dark.
Brookings reports: “The war has destroyed at least $127 billion of the nation’s buildings and other infrastructure, according to the Kyiv School of Economics.” The Washington Post reports the Ukrainians are asking for $700 billion in addition to the over $100 billion we have sent.
On the ground, Ukraine has had difficulty taking any territory actively defended by Russia. The recent “victory” of Ukraine capturing Kherson has evaporated. Ukraine is evacuating Kherson due to Russian shelling. The Ukrainian military machine is unable to maintain control of a city their opponent had evacuated. All the September and October Ukrainian offensives have stalled, and the Russians appear to be solidifying their lines of defense and dramatically increasing their forces in the field while Ukraine is drafting sixty-year-old men.
Ukraine is also losing its access to the resources it needs to continue the war. The U.S. and Europe are running out of weapons to send Ukraine. In addition, CNN reports weapons supplies for Ukraine are running low. Ukraine’s military equipment, especially its artillery, is crumbling and the West can’t replace much of what is breaking down.
Foreign Policy reports that NATO officials are very worried by the shortages. Even neocon Frederick Kagan admits NATO isn’t prepared for a conflict like Ukraine. “NATO doesn’t really plan to fight wars like this, and by that I mean wars with a super intensive use of artillery systems and lots of tank and gun rounds,” Kagan told Foreign Policy. “We were never stocked for this kind of war to begin with.” According to the CEO of Raytheon, Ukraine has used thirteen years of Javelin production in ten months.
It didn’t have to be this way. Ukraine and Russia could have made a lasting peace deal if it weren’t for the meddling of the Globalist American Empire. In March of 2022, the two sides appeared to be close to agreeing on terms to settle the conflict. It appeared that the agreement would assure Ukraine would never join NATO. The NATO issue is the biggest in this whole affair. The United States and United Kingdom thwarted this deal and the war has continued since, killing tens of thousands of Ukrainians, Russians, and others. Their blood is on the hands of U.S. and U.K. leaders.
U.S. defense contractors, politicians, and think tanks are profiting at the expense of Ukraine and its unfortunate citizens. The rest of Europe is suffering from the “maximum sanctions” aimed at Russia while Ukrainians continue to flee their own country. None of this suffering appears to concern the people in charge of American foreign policy. They don’t care about Ukraine’s ruin–they only care about sticking it to Russia. This is the inevitable product of a D.C. worldview that sees humans as cattle.
No doubt, the cost of the war to Russia has been high as well. They have miscalculated and made errors throughout this whole tragedy. But the narrative purveyed to the American people has not been honest or accurate. What does Ukraine gain by losing tens of thousands of lives and significant portions of its infrastructure? Many Ukrainians have lost their loved ones and face a brutal winter all for the sake of people like Ursula von der Leyen, Joe Biden, and their neocon handlers. It’s time for Western leaders face the truth, and pursue negotiations to save the Ukrainians from this human tragedy.
The views of individual contributors do not necessarily represent those of the Strategic Culture Foundation.