Doesn't seem important, right? Well, actually--not. Very important but it is not easy for some (that is why I do what I do) to make a clear connection between grand strategy, economics and military operational-tactical matters.
The European Commission is walking away from the idea of proposing a price cap on Russian gas as part of measures to tackle the energy crisis, the Guardian reported on Tuesday, citing a leaked draft document of proposals it had seen. The draft document, expected to be unveiled on Wednesday, contains no reference to any price cap on gas, be it Russian or not, according to the leak viewed by the Guardian.
As anyone with the IQ above room temperature already stated not for once, all those "price caps", be that for gas or oil from Russia, are nothing more than optics. No solution to Europe's energy crisis is possible for a primary reason of EU's bureaucracy incompetence and being ideologically driven, with the latter being a broad term covering anything from suicidal sanctions on Russia to Europe being prepped for sacrifice on the altar of collapsing US "empire". It still will not help much the US due to pretty much same reasons as in EU, but, as I am on record, should the US have had competent "elites", the plan may have worked.
In related news:
The US and its allies are in talks over whether to send Ukraine more advanced weapons in the future, including fighter aircraft, a US defense official has said, according to the Financial Times. Some of Kiev’s Western allies were emboldened by last week’s successful offensive against Russia in Kharkov Region, the British newspaper reported on Tuesday. They are now discussing “Ukraine’s longer-term needs,” according to the anonymous US source. Some believe it would be appropriate to send warplanes to Ukraine in the “medium to longer term,” the source said, according to the publication. Western nations previously refused to provide fighter jets to Ukraine, citing the time it would take to train Ukrainian pilots, issues with servicing advanced weapon systems on the ground, and a risk of escalation in the conflict with Russia.
This shit has been in "discussion" since the onset of SMO and it really makes no difference, if one assumes that the decision will be made to supply F-16 (or any other combat aircraft), to Ukraine since for Buk-M3 or S-300V with S-400 it makes absolutely no difference if it is F-16, F-15 or F-35--they will be shot down the same way as 99% of Ukrainian Air Force was. Random popping out, here and there, of the remnants of Ukie combat aircraft (primarily Su-25 and very seldom MiG-29) ends always with the same result--being shot down. Including by Russian Air Force combat aircraft such as Su-35s. I want to reiterate the point--the US doesn't need another humiliation of its military technology in the open conflict. Most of it turned out to be primarily a commercial and terror product, good mostly against civilians and civilian infrastructure.
Now, for some hysterical and FUD susceptible, if not altogether gullible, people:
The Russian government is not discussing a military mobilization “at this moment,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told journalists on Tuesday. He was responding to a question about Moscow’s reaction to last week’s advances of Ukrainian forces in Kharkov Region. Moscow pulled back its troops from a number of settlements in the area for what the Russian Defense Ministry described as a “regrouping” necessary to continue the military operation against Kiev. Peskov said there was “no talk” of mobilization and downplayed some of the criticism that the military leadership and the ministry faced from various commentators over the retreat and Ukrainian gains. He assessed that the Russian public supported Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to attack Ukraine and was “very sensitive” to events there, meaning some people will take last week’s setback very emotionally. “Criticisms are a normal part of pluralism of opinions, as long as they stay within the legal boundaries,” he said.
I happen to agree with Peskov on the issue of pluralism. For those people who continue their (utterly amateurish) talk about "mobilization" they:
1. Have no idea what they are talking about;
2. Usually repeat Western and IPSO propaganda, often not even understanding this fact.
3. That is why I am on record: 99% of all those "military" telegram channels, military "analysts", military "reporters", "patriots" and "strategists" are frauds--they have zero military expertise, least of all in serious operational matters, let alone in understanding what mobilization is and what it entails.
I will repeat, again, that the bulk of Russian ground forces still remains in reserve and the actual number of Russian regulars fighting in Ukraine is (I speculate) out of 300,000 + is somewhere between 60 and 80,000. The rest of the force is LDNR militia and volunteers, who are about the size of 50-60,000. This force size is sufficient for the aims of SMO and for methodical annihilation of VSU's personnel and equipment. Real numbers and correlations are known to Russian General Staff only. Once one begins to put together all (known to us, mere mortals) factors of geopolitical, economic, diplomatic, military nature, in other words understanding "the nature of war", then one may stop repeating beaten to death political and military cliches, akin to:"Russia MUST understand that it fights with whole West"--no shit, geniuses, that is why Russia issued an ultimatum to combined West in December of 2021. So, try to see, truly see, not jumping from one particularity to another, the larger picture, and do not forget what demilitarization is all about. I will try to help on my side.