Today President Biden held a conference call with the four leaders of France, Italy, Germany, and the United Kingdom. Or as I like to call them, the senior partnership of NATO. And never for better reason. Because President Biden is going to Brussels to meet with NATO on Thursday, and never have the stakes been higher.

Because at this point, pretty much everybody from lowlifes like me all the way up to NATO analysts and military experts agree, If Russia and Ukraine aren’t already in a stalemate, they will be in a week or so. Which means that Ukrainian soldiers will keep picking off Russian soldiers and tanks like shooting fish in a barrel, and Russians will continue shelling the shit out of innocent civilians. With no end in sight.

When Putin finally invaded the Ukraine, NATO was left with basically a three stage strategy to deal with. The first they have already accomplished. With Putin’s delay in invading Ukraine, the US and NATO were able to get enough defensive arms into Ukraine to prevent Putin from waltzing into Kiev in a week and establishing a puppet government, before trying to pacify the country. That is now a pipe dream.

The other two are what NATO will be discussing on Thursday. The medium range plan was aimed at getting Russia out of Ukraine, and helping Ukraine get started in rebuilding. And if the world came together to donate to rebuild the Notre Dame Cathedral, Ukraine should be a no brainer, especially after Putin’s brutality.

The third one is the long range plan for NATO to deal once and for all with Putin and Russia. And that’s the one that requires the most care and consultation. Because the first goal is already achieved, Putin will never dominate Ukraine again. The second one will work itself out, but not in a way that is anything like what Putin wanted it to be. The third one is the kicker.

Make no mistake, in the space of less than a year, Biden has pulled off a geopolitical miracle. He not only undid 4 years of toxic Trump sludge, he managed to pull the 30 NATO nations back into line to back Ukraine. And along the way, not only did he get the fractured US congress to fall in line, he got the rest of the non NAYO world to join in.

And that is going to be the key for the third step. Putin has been pulling this same lame shit for more than 20 years now. He pulled it in Chechnya. He pulled it in Georgia. He pulled it again in spades in Syria, and he pulled it one last time in Crimea in 2014. And he feels totally empowered to keep pulling it whenever he wants, simply because he has never faced any serious consequences for it. But not this time.

Shit, even the Iranians have never been held to the enveloping and restrictive economic sanctions that the US and NATO have slapped Russia with. And not just countries, multinational companies from all over have pulled out of operating in Russia. And it’s already having an effect. In the last 3 weeks, more than 107,000 Russians, mostly younger, better educated, and more upwardly mobile Russians have already voted with their feet, seeking greener pastures. Those are 107,000 people who won’t be going to jobs in Russia. And there was a report today of multiple 2 mile long hospital trains leaving Ukraine to take wounded soldiers back home, How do you think that’s going to play in Russia?

Look, Leningrad Lindsey Graham just needs to shut the fuck up! This country has tried to engineer covert regime changes far too many times in the past, and it’s never worked out once. This is an internal problem that the Russian people have to decide for themselves, and there’s only one way to do that.

No matter under what conditions that Putin leaves Ukraine, NATO must hold firm on all of the sanctions for as long as Putin is in power, and press the world to go along. If we bail once again Putin comes out feeling empowered because it cost him nothing. However he leaves Ukraine, Putin will be weakened and crippled. His vaunted military will be in tatters, and as long as the sanctions are in place, there is no way he can rebuild it. And don’t give me any shit about making innocent civilians suffer. Right now Putin is slaughtering innocent Ukrainians, they’d die for sanctions. In a country with 11 time zones, you can’t tell me that Russia can’t even feed its own people, even if it’s not the fare they’re used to.

We’ll never get another shot at this that’s this good. Putin got in over his head. No matter how he leaves Ukraine, he loses. And if he sets one foot on NATO soil, he’ll be crushed, and he knows it. For one shining moment, the entire world is aligned against a brutal dictator, and we have to make it count. This chance won’t come along again in our lifetime. Glory to Ukraine!


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  1. Honestly, Murf, I get the sense, based on on-the-ground reporting from Kyiv Independent, NEXTA and a few other sources, that we’re about to hit the end of the stalemate stage. Yes, Mariupol is a horror show by any objective measure but Zelinskyy just came out and told Kherson to “hang on”. The Ukrainians get that one, Putin kisses his little land bridge goodbye.

    Uncle Joe isn’t getting near the credit you pointed out he deserves. As you also point out, that’s by design. Nothing like an underdog story where one of the planet’s biggest abusive assholes is the villain to properly frame the story. Frankly, given the increasingly fraught state of Russian armaments (their only tank factory shutting down due to lack of parts, issuing antique rifles to their newest troops), I wouldn’t be surprised if the invaders were reduced to throwing rocks by next week.

  2. I dislike any of the leaders involved speaking of the dealing with Russia/Putin once and for all because realistically the only way to accomplish that would be to nuke them out of existence and there would be, quite obviously, very dire consequences to such an action.

    Can Putin be dealt with (i.e. removed from the picture permanently)? Probably. Russia itself however has not only a line of oligarchs waiting in the wings, but also a nuclear arsenal that pretty much insures the country will be a pain in everyone’s ass until they reach the modern ages politically, economically, etc. Unless and until the Russian people grab the power back, rip it away from people who are for all practical purposes Tsars, the country will be a shit stain on the planet.

    • Ah, but what kind of shape is that nuclear arsenal in? Kamil Galeev has documented that nuclear crews are getting the same mistreatment by state-backed mafia that the Russian army is. As such, it’s easy to imagine that the nukes are as poorly maintained and dysfunctional as everything else Putin could throw. I have yet to forget about the new nuke blowing up on the launchpad a few years back.

      Understand me…NONE of this is a reason to think Putin doesn’t have at least ONE functional nuke he could use. But assuming I’m right about this, I suspect that the Russian nuclear arsenal may be every bit as worthless as the ruble right now.

      • It will be essential that we force nuclear disarmament on Russia as a condition of full readmittance to world economic society.

    • Unless ‘we the people’ step up here to grab OUR democracy back, there will be no long range danger to putin. The gop back in power will welcome fascism in all its manifestations & putin will be sitting on his yacht drinking vodka.


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