People are wondering how long the war in Ukraine will go on. The good news: the troops will be home before Christmas. The bad news: we don’t which Christmas.
How long was the US in Afghanistan again? The lesson there is you don’t have to defeat a super power. All you have to do is endure and outlast it. The Ukrainians know this. We also know that Russia is not a super power. It’s not a near peer to the US. When you have to put 60 year old cobbled together equipment in the field something is wrong.
Ukrainians are doing well with western equipment that’s two and three generations out of date. They are excited to be getting F-16 jets -which came out in 1978. Sure, they’ve been updated a lot, but this isn’t cutting edge technology. It doesn’t have to be to exceed Russian counterparts.
Russia is breaking itself on Ukraine. The west appears to be spending a lot of money, but it’s still a bargain. If anything shortens the war it will be western support. Remember, all the Ukrainians have to do is endure. They’ve seen what happens to towns occupied by Russia. No Ukrainians want that. They are in it to win it.
This war is a horrible waste of human potential. War almost always is. It’s all because of the misguided ambitions of a authoritarian strongman. Russia is broken and may never recover. Their best and brightest have fled. Their neighbors know they are weak. China even put out a map showing Russian territory as part of China. Russian, knowing how weak they are, were very quiet about it.
Russia could end this war at any time. All they’d have to do is go home. They could even do it before Christmas.