By Peter Zeihan
I’m going to be discussing some disturbing aspects of the Ukraine War today. Consider this your parental advisory.
In the aftermath of the Russia’s failed Kyiv offensive, the world became aware of the omnipresent nature of Russian war crimes. The Russian retreat exposed a raft of abuse, kidnappings, rapes, tortures and murders for the world to see. This awareness has expanded and deepened with every Ukrainian counteroffensive: Kharkiv, Izyum, Lyman, Kherson. European radio intercepts from throughout the occupied territories suggest a universal pattern.
Part of these war crimes fall under the category of military operating procedure. When the Russian leadership realized the Ukrainians were not going to simply roll over, Ukraine’s civilian population shifted in the Kremlin mind from a non-issue to an urgent problem. The solution was to target civilian infrastructure to make the land broadly uninhabitable. The goal was to convince as much of the population as possible to flee. Refugees leave and don’t fight. War crimes in a military-strategic sense.
At the local level, war crimes perpetrated against those who remained behind have been far more…personal…