Why I Study War continued | William Thomas Online | William Thomas

Why I Study War continued



by William Thomas

Charge of the Light Brigade by Richard Caton Woodville Jr.

Charge of the Light Brigade by Richard Caton Woodville Jr.

On 25 October 1854, the British Light Brigade galloped grandly into Crimea’s Balaclava Valley, stoked on the glories of war! Until enfilading crossfire from Russian cannons opening up from high ground on each flank, and cannonades firing point-blank into their faces, cut down two-thirds of those 607 saber-waving boys. Along with most of their horses. 

    “It is magnificent, but it is not war,” exclaimed Marshal Pierre Bosquet. “It is madness.” 

    On witnessing this debacle, war correspondent William Howard Russell might have been addressing NATO and Kyiv when he wrote: “Our Light Brigade was annihilated by their own rashness, and by the brutality of a ferocious enemy.” 

A territorial defence unit trains outside Kyiv -Sergei Supinsky:AP

A territorial defence unit trains outside Kyiv -Sergei Supinsky/AP

    Nearly two centuries later, as soon as Ukraine’s rain-drenched quagmire hardens in late April, a much bigger and even more violent mechanized charge could see eight newly refurbished “storm brigades” comprising some 40,000 mostly ill-trained, poorly led and demoralized conscripts, along with special forces held in reserve — thrown against layered Russian defenses from Zaporozhye to Crimea, without air cover, reliable armor, or effective artillery support.

    If the night attack in Zaporozhye on April 29 was a precursor, the initial push will commence after dark. Or maybe not. The targeted Russian artillery battalion responded with stunning violence and rapidity, using tanks and artillery — and NATO-designated “second rate” night-vision and thermal imaging — to smash that assault.  

    Despite this shoulder-tap from the as yet seldom encountered regular Russian Army, wherever NATO/Ukraine’s last best battalions make their non-optional, London-ordered charges into endless steel rain, the hope persists that the well-protected Chmobiki behind those bewildering salvos will panic and run away, precipitating Putin’s downfall! 

    Alas, hope is not a plan. 


After fighting off covetous invaders for centuries, the Russians are experts at war. This time, their well-entrenched front-line troops awaiting whatever comes next are confident in their AI-linked anti-air defenses, artillery, fighters, bombers, drones, missiles, rockets, gunships, glide bombs and surveillance platforms to keep watch, blow up anything that needs blowing up, and otherwise “do unto others before they can do it to you.” A recent field test of “all arms integrated warfare” detected, targeted and wiped out a remnant battalion crossing open ground toward Bakhmut, killing 200 “Ukrainians”. 

    In 4 minutes. 

St. George killing the dragon, 15th c. Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow  -12:Universal Images Group:Getty

                                                          St. George killing the dragon, 15th c. -Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow

    What if Russian defenders forget to panic? What if devoutly Orthodox Christians prevail over Azov’s Satanic rites and a woke-infected NATO? Will Poland suicidally intervene, precipitating a real war? 

    Like their American and European public counterparts, the Poles have not put “war with Russia” on their to-do lists. For their part, the Russian command has always preferred to absorb and dissipate an attacker's first blow. Before bringing up fresh reserves and launching a devastating counterattack of their own. 

     Anyone who has studied how Russians fight — which apparently excludes every general and political leader in the West — understands that once this last ill-fated charge by perhaps 50,000 undertrained teenagers, old men, and exhausted veterans dispersed across the battlefront will shatter themselves against the mines and projectiles of at least 140,000 front-line defenders holding prepared positions even more formidable than the ones they'd left. When this happens, some 350,000 heavily armed Russians held in reserve could advance south and west virtually unobstructed and unopposed. 

    If they wait that long. 

    Characteristically, the Russians aren’t talking. But Ukrainian soldiers fed up with being needlessly sacrified are on social media vowing to get their hands on Zelenski. They’d better hurry. Following the Kremlin’s last mobilization of 500,000 conscripts and reservists, by mid-June 1 million Russian Federation soldiers are expected to be visiting Ukraine.  

Ukrainian soldierss taking a break in Bakhmut, where the fighting is street by street -Christian Science Monitor

Ukrainian soldierss taking a break in Bakhmut, where the fighting is street by street -Christian Science Monitor


“If you ask me personally, I don’t believe in a big counteroffensive for us. I’d like to believe in it, but I’m looking at the resources and asking, with what?” asks a Ukrainian battalion commander, call sign, Kupol. 

    Among Kupol’s original 500 soldiers with combat experience, 100 have been killed in action. The remaining 400 are wounded. Kyiv admits daily losses of 200 to 400 casualties along several battlefronts.

    “I get 100 new soldiers,” Kupol continues. “They don’t give me any time to prepare them. They say, ‘Take them into the battle.’ The soldier doesn’t shoot. I ask him why, and he says, ‘I’m afraid of the sound of the shot’. 

    “They just drop everything and run,” this Lt. Colonel adds. “You’re on the front line. They’re coming toward you, and there’s nothing to shoot with.”

    Volodymyr, 54, shrugs with the fatalism shared by all frontline solders. “When they drive us to Bakhmut, I already know I'm being sent to death,” he laments. “The Russians keep firing at us, but we don't have artillery — so we have nothing to attack them back with. I don't know if I will return or not. We are just getting killed.”

    Among another 27-member platoon, only “a few” got out. “The Russians have so many weapons,” Valeriy says. “Sometimes, you hear an incoming every second.” (Confirmed by a journalist there.) 

    Raw recruits “are afraid to leave the trenches,” a veteran named Dmytro picks up. Shelling is so intense, “one soldier panics, then others catch it.” 

    Dymtro doesn’t blame them. The nerve-stripping noise and gaping shrapnel wounds from massed artillery fire is beyond terrifying. Especially when you’re 16-years-old or 60, yanked off the street, given two or three weeks’ instruction on which end the bullets come out, and deployed into a muddy ditch unable to shoot back at an enemy you rarely glimpse.

    Do the people who put them there not grok karma?

Ukrainian soldiers after a battle near Bakhmut

Ukrainian soldiers after a battle near Bakhmut


According to Vladyslav, the Russians are using drone-directed artillery barrages to destroy the houses where the Ukrainians hide, leading to high casualties among the defenders and minimal losses among their attackers. No wonder the “refusers” in Vladyslav’s unit, as well as other platoons, are balking at crossing roads and fields under continuous observation and fire.

    Just as he feared, when eight of the 25 soldiers in his platoon arrived at a crossroads outside Bakhmut, they were immediately hit by mortars. Within seconds, two of his buddies were killed outright. One soldier lost his arm. Another’s stomach was ripped open. Everyone, including Vladyslav, suffered severe concussion and was pulled out. 

    The position was lost.

    This goes on day after day after day.

Ukrainian serviceman takes cover in a trench during shelling near the embattled city of Bakhmut, March 8, 2023 -Aris Messinis:AFP

Ukrainian serviceman takes cover in a trench during shelling near the embattled city of Bakhmut, March 8, 2023 -Aris Messinis/AFP


While America’s war industry focuses on over-engineered, big-ticket aircraft and experimental warships that fall apart in daily use, the Russians have learned the value of simple metal tubes equipped with a trigger lanyard. 

    The 10 to 1 Russian artillery advantage helps explain why the chickenhawks in Washington, London, Brussels and Berlin are allergic to battlefields. “What I’ve noticed is that the farther away you get from the frontlines, the more bloodthirsty everyone is,” observes Vlasenko-Irsetsk in Donetsk.

Don't mess with Russian generals


Russia did not want this war. For eight years, while watching American weapons pour into Azov and Right Sector-dominated units, President Vladimir Putin pushed for enforcement  of the settlements agreed to by all sides. In late February 2022, after repeated warnings against NATO expansion were answered by US pledges to give Zelenski nuclear weapons, Putin angered his generals by launching a limited Special Military Operation with some 80,000 troops. Resisting the invaders were Ukraine’s NATO-trained and equipped army of 650,000 regulars and reservists.   

     For the first time in modern warfare, instead of leveling an entire country, American-style, Putin stunned the world by virtually tiptoeing into former Russian territories occupied by ethnic Russians and fellow Slavs. By threatening Kyiv with a lightning advance, he planned to quickly persuade Zelenski to embrace neutrality, concede historically Russian Crimea, and allow self-governance in the Donbass until a (since completed) referendum could be held. 

    Despite costly Ukrainian Army and Azov ambushes guided by American satellites and  surveillance aircraft circling over the Black Sea, in this he was successful. 

    What the pragmatic Russian leader failed to anticipate was the neocons’ rabid refusal to allow Zelenski to accept the peace agreements they’d already signed!

    Tricked again, Mr. Reasonable went away. In his place appeared a towering pissed-off bear — probably a griz — that proceeded to maul Ukraine’s original army in Mariupol and Lysychansk, between March and May 2022.


NATO fighters in Kharkov Region, June 23, 2022 -Paula Bronstein:Getty Images

NATO fighters in Kharkov Region, June 23, 2022 -Paula Bronstein/Getty Images

    From September to November, NATO-coached Kyiv achieved its first great offensive “victory” in the Kharkov (Kharkiv) region. After rinflciting heavy losses on repeated Ukrainian assaults, the Russians had withdrawn their token troops and territorial guards from Kherson to the more defendable eastern bank of Dnieper — inviting the “victors” forward. It was a trap. Attracting hell from on high, the Ukrainian Army suffered up to 44,000 casualties. After this second reconstituted NATO/Ukrainian army was destroyed in Lyman, at least 2,000 of an estimated 20,000 Polish soldiers masquerading in Ukrainian uniforms were returned home to be buried in fresh cemeteries. 

    Five months later, cut off from resupply and ordered to stand fast and die, a third jerry-rigged “Ukrainian” army comprising resentful draftees, irreplaceable special forces, foreign mercenaries and ISIS volunteers are being bombed into oblivion inside the last tall apartment buildings they still hold overlooking the western outskirts of downtown Bakhmut.

    “Why did the collective west start a fight it couldn’t finish?” asks former US Marine, Brian Berletic.

    Answer: Because they have no skin in the game.

Ukrainian tanks caught in the open

Ukrainian tanks caught in the open


If Ukraine’s lead comic actor and his Cold War-ossified overseers had listened to Vladimir Putin’s reasons for finally intervening in Donbass, they would know that Moscow’s goal is not to “conquer” another American failed state — and inherit its headaches. Instead, having prepared for a 30-month war, the Kremlin’s oft-stated goal is to prevent Kyiv’s Nazi regime from ever threatening Russia again by “demilitarizing” and “denazifying” Ukraine. 

    Unhappily for the Ukrainian soldiers and civil servants whose monthly salaries are currently being paid by American taxpayers, their distant owners are slow learners. You already guessed it. NATO is currently standing up a fourth and final mongrel army to reenact the Charge of the Light Brigade on an even more sickening scale. 

Three burning columns of Ukrainian armor are annihilated while attempting to assault Kherson -RUF 


Originally marketed as the path to total victory, American officials now say Ukraine’s over-hyped counteroffensive no longer seeks to expel all Russians from their traditional homelands in the Donbass and Crimea. Instead, US clown Defense Secretary, Lloyd Austin, is predicting astonishing advances up to 30 miles into what is now officially Russian soil.

    Unfortunately for frustrated Pentagon planners, their long-awaited “spring offensive” is already being dissipated by bad weather and piecemeal assaults. In a preview of coming catastrophes, a preliminary two-day Ukrainian probe near the strategic town of Ugledar cost some 200 soldiers and accompanying vehicles when a drone-recorded column of cast-off NATO armor was caught in the open and decimated by Russian artillery and aviation. US-supplied M777 “wonder weapons” returned fire. But the fragile, high-tech howitzers were immediately targeted by passive acoustic sensors and destroyed by loitering “kamikaze” munitions. 

Before and after at Soledor

Soledor, before and after

    By then, Ukrainian brigades husbanded for the big push south to take Melitopol and cut off Crimea had been redeployed north, where their valiant but vain attempts to hold the strategic crossroads at Bakhmut and Soledar cost 50% to 80% casualties in the units engaged. 

    On April 18, Russian multiple-rocket barrages struck Ukraine’s 54th mechanized brigade concentrating near Seversk, while Tupolev bombers smashed the 81st airmobile brigade near the village of Belogorovka with 3,000-pound glide bombs. Outside Rakov in the Kupyansk region, Ukraine’s 14th mechanized brigade was obliterated by massive Fuel Air Bombs delivered by similar heavy bombers no longer restrained by Ukraine’s severely degraded air defenses.    

    Saturation Russian drone strikes continue in at least six regions. Operating mostly unopposed, aircraft, missiles and artillery batteries are deleting forward-deployed ammunition and fuel dumps, along with concentrations of NATO/Ukrainian troops and armor massing for a now postponed April 30 offensive that may end before it fully begins. 

    Not doing stupid stuff is another excellent reason to study war.


Residents rally in the center of the northeastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, May 29, 2021 -Serget Bobok:AFP

Residents rally in the center of the northeastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, May 29, 2021 -Serget Bobok/AFP


After years putting the weapons, training, trenches, politics and boomerang sanctions in place, this is not turning out to be the slam-dunk Washington and Brussels envisioned. Which might be why Russian artillerymen firing 20,000 to 60,000 rounds a day rate Ukraine’s top amateur general and his foreign dance directors, “insane”.

    This assessment echoes their forebears at Balaclava, who simply assumed that the officers who ordered the charge of the Light Brigade were drunk.   

Ukrainian refugees walk into Poland and safety (count the men)  -Daniel Leal/AFP, GETTY


NATO is fighting over a corpse on life-support. Of some 35.5 million Ukrainians remaining in-country at the war’s start, more than 10 million have since fled into Europe and Russia. Because men have been forbidden to leave, these refugees are primarily women and their dependents. If previous US-sponsored diasporas are a reliable guide, most will never return.

    Unsurprisingly, birth rates have plummeted across Ukraine. “Who wants to live or give birth to children in a country which has been mismanaged for 30 years, its infrastructure collapsing, its riches sucked out to New York, London and Tel Aviv by corrupt feudal oligarchs and the US government, a country which is now poorer than several African countries, a country which has no future?” asks the Saker.

    “Schools are closed in most cities,” adds Larisa Shesler on-scene. “Settlements, even large ones, look like ghost towns. In Nikolaev, Odessa, Zaporozhye, less than half of the buildings’ apartments are occupied. Mostly it is the old people or very poor people who have no money and no chance to settle in another country who stay there.”

    Shelser has discovered that a modern state cannot survive without reliable electricity. “The vast majority of the employed population receives about USD 381/month. However, the price of goods has risen by 40-80%, so people exist on the verge of survival,” she stresses. According to the governor of Nikolaev, 80% of its citizens have lost their jobs.

    Energy-shy Germans can relate to Ukraine’s overnight deindustrialization. With its GDP cratering, the EU banning imports of its pesticide-saturated grain, and a once robust Soviet-era energy grid severely degraded by drone and missile strikes to hamstring a military largely dependent on electric trains, Ukraine's “factories are shutting down, mining is declining, and the harvest is falling,” Shesler adds. By the fourth quarter of 2022, Ukraine’s industrial production had already fallen by 50% and 90%, depending on the region.


Besides exposing America’s political and military leadership as pathological liers, among recently-leaked Top Secret “Pentagon Papers 2” is a Defense Intelligence Agency assessment that the US does not expect to allow any peace talks between Kyiv and Moscow until at least 2024. 

    “Negotiations to end the conflict are unlikely during 2023 in all considered scenarios,” the DIA concludes. This means that even if Ukraine manages to regain and retain a “significant” amount of territory, while inflicting “unsustainable losses on Russian forces” — this would not lead to peace talks, the DIA assures nervous neocons. Instead, the DIA forecasts that the situation will get bleaker, with even heavier Ukrainian casualties. If the national socialist fanatics holding Ukraine hostage opt to step up strikes on cities deep inside Mother Russia using American-supplied weapons, Moscow promises a devastating response that may not be confined to Ukraine.  

    Perhaps the best reason to study war — or at least pay attention to the biggest conflict in Europe since WWII — is to not become complicit in our own moral and economic ruin by turning away.

    Instead, as huge anti-war, anti-NATO, anti-EU protests continue across Europe, those of us living under North America’s media blackout can begin breaking this demonic neocon spell by becoming alert to the violence we too often unthinkingly perpetuate in our own thoughts, words, relationships and “entertainment” choices.  

    The world wants peace. Why are we allowing a few woke psychos continue their godless agenda of chaos — instead of speaking out? The next time someone wants to sell you a war...  




“As the darkness drops in the West, a glimmer of a light, its hour come round at last — due especially to the recent colossal efforts of Russia — is rising in the East and heralding the birth of a multipolar world.” -Nora Hoppe.


William Thomas is the author of Scorched Earth, Bringing The War Home, and Days of Deception: Ground Zero And Beyond. During and immediately following Desert Storm, he served on a three-man environmental emergency response team in Bahrain and Kuwait.

Recommended web sources:

Asia Times 

Big Serge


Pepe Escobar

Garland Nixon

Andrei Martyanov

Alexander Mercouris

Col. Scott Ritter (retired)

Col. Doug McGreggor (retired)

Dima’s Military Summary (daily)

Brian Berletic, US Marine (retired)

Larry Johnson, CIA analyst (retired)

Alexander Mercouris & Alex Cristoforou 

Gonzalo Lira’s Roundtables (from Kharkov)


FREE ASSANGE   发件人     William Thomas 2023