Noted military analyst and retired U.S. Army Col. Douglas MacGregor said in an interview posted online this week that he believes Russian President Vladimir Putin has already won the war in Ukraine in an assessment that differs widely from what is being reported in the ‘mainstream’ media.
Those sources are nearly universally portraying Ukraine as heroically beating back the Russian assault with brave resistance that is taking a huge toll on the invading forces.
But, says MacGregor, in fact, Putin’s forces have already achieved many of their objectives and there is little, if anything, Ukrainian forces can do about it at this point.
“What Ukrainian forces are still active are entirely surrounded, cut off, and isolated in various towns and cities,” he told the “Gray Zone” podcast. “The Ukrainian forces are incapable of anything but a pinprick attack on something that doesn’t appear to be very robust or dangerous.
“So the war, for all intents and purposes, has been decided,” he continued. “The issue for the Russians, from the very beginning, has been, ‘How do we proceed without killing large numbers of civilians and inflicting a lot of property damage. And [Russian President Vladimir] Putin gave very strict orders from the outset that [his forces] were to avoid such things.
“The problem with avoiding it is that it has slowed the progress of the operation to the point where it has given false hope to most of the Ukrainians” which “has been seized on by people in the West to try and convince the world that a defeat is in progress when in fact, the opposite is the case,” MacGregor continued. “So the war itself at this stage of the game could be decided very, very rapidly — permanently — if Putin were to give the order and allow the forces to disregard the concern for civilians and property damage.”
Putin appears to have given that order, according to reporting on widespread damage being inflicted on Ukrainian cities by numerous media outlets that are not always focused on the same images and locations.
But MacGregor says otherwise.
“He hasn’t done that. He has continued to negotiate even though he recognizes that the people sitting across from him really are not in a position to deliver very much,” he continued in his Gray Zone interview.
He also said that the Brandon regime and most of ‘official Washington’ wants the war to continue in order to harm Putin and his military to the greatest extent possible, but in fact, MacGregor said, based on his sources, not only is Putin enjoying high approval among Russian populations in surrounding countries, but his military is faring well.
“So I think the big problem right now is that in the West, there is no truth, there is wishful thinking. There is this impression of success by the Ukrainians that doesn’t stack up. In fact, the Russians are capturing large quantities of Western equipment, British and American, that are being shipped to them at this point,” said MacGregor.
“The issue for the Russians right now is that everything that is worth controlling is controlled,” he opined after explaining that Russian troops are focused primarily on Ukraine’s population centers and have avoided the central portion of the country because that is the agricultural heartland and spring planting season is right around the corner.
Great assessment you won’t hear anywhere else. https://t.co/8dGOpfRllV
— J.D. MAGA Heyes (@JDHeyes) March 18, 2022
Some of his views are being shared by other scholars and experts, including Atlantic Council scholar Dr. Ben Connable, who did note that though Russia was certain to ‘win’ the war, Moscow’s occupation forces will be bled frequently by Ukrainian resistance fighters.
“In the coming months, Russia could potentially gain control over approximately half of the country running from Kyiv in the north to Odesa in the south and the Donbas in the east. If they are successful, Russian occupying forces will assume responsibility for approximately 20 million people across an area the size of Norway,” he wrote for RealClearDefense.com.
“This would be a daunting task even in the best of circumstances. Unfortunately for the Russians, they face the worst of circumstances for an occupying power. Historical cases of occupation and counterinsurgency suggest an impending disaster. There is almost no chance that Russia will successfully occupy Ukraine.”