The West is naked, and everyone sees it

There's a torrent building up slowly but steadily: A torrent of articles that point out the failure of the West, its star industries and institutions, to rise to the pandemic challenge. There was an earlier wave of more or less humorous content on humour website about how the U.S. fails to rise to the challenge and save earth as it does in Hollywood movies all the time. Hollywood disaster movies usually have some scientist who doesn't get listened to until the disaster is happening, then he gets listened to, the president rises to the challenge, some genius idea, disaster defeated. Oh yes, and New York gets pummeled every time.
The Cassandra aspect and the NY pummeling were the only things that happened for real (that bis, only the bad aspects did happen).

But it's not only the U.S. that's failing grossly. The left wing-controlled Canada has failed to bend the curve of infections and is still in the linear growth phase as well (as of today). European countries fail with characteristic diversity of outcomes, and Russia fails, no matter how many shirtless photos its autocrat-in-chief has made.

I do suppose that the roots of failure are not merely about cultural issues with masks, though this added difficulty. Likewise, the loud but small minority of super egoists and anarchists who resist united action against the pandemic doesn't seem to be the driving failure to me, either.

My suspicion is rather that a strength of the West happens to be a weakness in this particular event: The Western focus on cooperation and consensus proves to be a weakness this time, as it has accustomed politicians and others to small steps rather than to decisive action. Now we do need decisive action, but our political leadership and public service are simply unsuitable for this.
This doesn't apply to the Americans and British, who famously rejected this style of policymaking. They fail for a different reason. They elected a clown, so they get a circus - it's that simple.

The real question in regard to defence is whether this show of weakness undermines our deterrence. I was pleasantly surprised by the American's ability to develop and quickly field MRAPs by the thousands in the 2000s despite their rotten procurement bureaucracy. The current crisis does now undermine this signal. Maybe the ventilator and mask production mobilization will at least signal an ability to respond with large-scale production within three months after the need becomes obvious.

The pandemic crisis also suggests that devastating economic and cultural warfare against the West may be as simple as manipulating some ordinary virus to create another pandemic or two.

The one upside that I see in this is a bit cynical; the Russians appear to fail even more badly (and cannot hide it any more). So basically the only somewhat capable potential threat to Europe in Europe is looking even worse (and badly hurt by the concurrent oil price collapse).

Still, it's a totally unsatisfactory picture in my opinion. Sadly, the rally-around-the-flag aspect and the loud noises of the moron faction diminish the chance for real, well-aimed improvements.


P.S.: I cautioned about what became a pandemic on February 1st and sounded full alarm on February 24th. This was without unusual access and without being in a job that would require me to care about public health. My dissatisfaction with the policies and their timing is rooted in part on my opinion that public knowledge suffices to do better than what the politicians did. The hesitation may have been an attempt to reduce the economic damage, but  the lack of early warning to the industries and lack of early prioritised orders for critical supplies indicates that the decision-making lag was really as long as it seems.


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    1. Decades of anti-science, pro-egoism and somewhat anarchist propaganda by right wing media and politicians in the U.S., UK and Australia sure didn't help.

      The European differences seem to be in part about luck and in part about different capabilities of medical services and the industries backing them.

      The extremely different mortality between Germany and as an example France is still weird. We learned that UCI and ventilator availability doesn't make terribly much difference, as there is no treatment and about 80% of those who get a ventilator die anyway. Obesity rates and age structures don't differ terribly much.
      It's weird.
      Maybe there's something important in preferred foods.

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    3. The EU wasn't made for this. I have never seen it playing a noteworthy role in any preceding natural disaster.

      The national-level measures of taking control of supplies led to irritations early on, but AFAIK the distribution of supplies works out OK by now. I suppose this goes beyond just the EU. I haven't read of any disastrous shortages in Switzerland or Norway, and Iceland demonstrably has a disproportionately high testing capacity.

      Germany took in some patients from other countries and as far as I can tell we had created excess capacity anyway.

      The German military proved to be pretty useless despite having an inflated medical branch. Just as the USN proved to be useless with its hospital ships. No armed service seems to have reacted to the failures during the Ebola epidemic in West Africa when armed services' relevant medical capabilities proved to be negligible compared to their budgeting.

      The German MoD tried to do something, but it wasn't much more than publicity stunts IMO. It may have added one or two per cent to the capabilities of the local public health bureaucracies and civilian medical sector.

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    5. Article 87a [Armed Forces] of the German Basic Law
      "(1) The Federation shall establish Armed Forces for purposes of defence. Their numerical strength and general organisational structure must be shown in the budget.
      (2) Apart from defence, the Armed Forces may be employed only to the extent expressly permitted by this Basic Law."

      I really, really want the military focused on deterrence & defence. It's inefficient at it, and outright horribly inefficient if not ineffective at everything else.
      We have plenty existing civilian agencies that can be tasked with disaster responses. The military's only unique capability is its transport helicopter inventory, and that should not exist because it's nonsense for deterrence & defence now.

  2. SO wrote: "We learned that UCI and ventilator availability doesn't make terribly much difference, as there is no treatment and about 80% of those who get a ventilator die anyway."

    That is wrong, in Germany around 30% of the intubated die. Quality of ICU teams matter, i.e. the fact that in overwhelmed regions many non-spacialists decide the traetment.

    The basic difference is that in Germany nowhere ICUs were flooded, while this was quite common in some French regions, with all ugly consequences like triages and high mortality in ICUs.

    BTW: Some New York hospitals also had a very high mortality (~90%).


  3. Basically, this is what I have been writing about for years: the unsuitability of the current social culture in Germany and many other western tm countries with regard to serious warfare. When it comes to deterrence, everyone looks too much at numbers, at technology, at political and economic processes, and at the logical order of events that seem to result from them etc.

    In fact, however, the intangibles, the irrational elements and the basic social and cultural flow are of extremely great importance for the question of military strength and military readiness and thus of crucial importance for the question of deterrence.

    In short: We (for now and at least the next decades) do not have the necessary social culture for a serious war of any kind, even for serious unconventional wars as outlined here in the article (economical and cultural attacks).

    Therefore all talk about military deterrence through us is useless to its core.

    1. You make the very basic and very common mistake of looking at one side only.
      Warfare is adversarial, your adversary matters.
      The Russian culture is A LOT more dysfunctional and rotten than Western European culture.
      The Russians are inexplicably inept at combat. Military history, combat footage, fairly recent combat ops and even online multiplayer combat gaming (as a description of young Russian males' mental effectiveness) keep showing Russian inferiority.
      The Chinese are very far away and don't really matter to Europe. They will never be able to project much of their non-space power against Europe.

    2. I won't comment on the other guy's bemoaning of the lack of militarism in Europe. I will say that deterrence is in the mind of the potential adversary, and one's own. It's also a highly convenient excuse to justify enduring non-violent enmity - oh he never attacked me because I
      deterred him, obviously.

      Objectively European military power does not deter the Russians - not in the sense implied by such cold analytical calculations. The Russians are simply not interested in conquest, certainly not for territories which would imply a war with NATO countries - and even within their own sphere conquest is not on the cards - Ukraine has been by and large written off as a loss, and the attitude seems to be "good riddance to bad rubbish".

      I am curious as to what you consider "rotten" in Western European as opposed to Russian culture. I'm also surprised, to say the least, about your conclusion that the Russians are inept at combat, much less that this is supported by military history.

    3. There are very few instances of Russians/Soviets winning battles while in a position of quantitative inferiority post-Suvorov. Often times even a numerical superior Russian/Soviet force was considered (and proved) to be largely ineffectual.

      Combat footages of Russians shows in-combat behaviour otherwise known only from African combat footages (excluding Rwandans). Russian mercenaries appear to excel at blundering.

      Russians as individuals:

      "rotten"; our societies are mature, settled, locked, largely incapable of mobilising great resources for an objective since the resources were already distributed and growth is slow. We have become accustomed to incremental action and the mental horizon of the people has shrunk considerably. Great many actually possible things appear to be impossible and inaction 'without alternative' now.

      I do still prefer this to the ultracorrupt kleptocracy-oligarchy of Russia that is near-perfect in its suppression of economic development outside of natural resources exploitation.

    4. I think Napoleon begged to differ, at the very least. Crimea and WW1 were embarrassments, Turkish wars and Central Asia / Caucasus were a mixed bag. Post-1942 Soviet formations had plenty of successes v. locally superior German forces (as well as reversals and failures until 1945). Afghanistan was arguably a qualified success.

      Not sure what combat footage you're referring to. I hope by mercenaries you don't mean the debunked Deir-ez-Zor American propaganda?
      Here (again) is the old Der Spiegel investigation into it: https://www.spiegel.de/politik/ausland/syrien-us-luftangriff-was-geschah-wirklich-in-deir-al-sor-a-1195901.html

      I asked you about the "rottenness" because I suspect Russians and other Europeans to suffer from similar civilisational diseases, first and foremost finance capitalism, weak institutions both political and economic, and yes, a consequently shrunken mental horizon.
      I do think the patients are in different stages of the disease - perhaps it is periodic / cyclical in nature. The Russians had it far worse than us but are now bouncing back - away from an "ultracorrupt kleptocratic-oligarchy" to a more capable form of society and government. It is us who is becoming a parody of Soviet propaganda about the decadent West. Observe the undeniable cementing of power in the USA and (more quietly in Europe) of a similar ultracorrupt kleptocracy-oligarchy - the continued rise of offshore tax schemes, multinational fraud, EU corruption schemes. As regards natural resources: the only thing worse than an over-reliance on their exploitation is not to have any, as in the case with the EU.

    5. Napoleon won battles against the Russians. They didn't withdraw and give up Moscow for no reason. Napoleonic logistics were ill-suited for the campaign, but the Russians didn't win battles without numerical superiority against him or his marechals.

      The EU has many natural resources; natural gas, crude oil, agriculture, mining, fishing, forestry (wood surplus in many regions), plenty wind and solar power potential. It just doesn't get much attention because it's small compared to the manufacturing sector. Some natural resources remain dormant becuase of high labour costs.

      The white collar crimes that you mentioned are actually on retreat. Their high times have passed. The EU had its wort corruption scandals in the 80's - nowadays the EU bureaucracy is feared for its tough conditions on subsidy programs and their enforcement. Tax evasion got fought much more in the 2010's than before.

    6. Napoleon was ultimately cast off his throne largely thanks to the Russians, starting when they denied him a quick decisive victory. Strategically, they did pretty well. In terms of the campaign - the tie at Borodino was very hard fought and cost Napoleon the campaign. In terms of outright defeats with inferior numbers, the French also lost the battles of Klyastitsi, Krasny and Chashniki, Smolyany as well as Vyazma. In the beginning they fought reasonably well a series of delaying actions, before being caught at Smolensk, then burned Moscow to ensure Napoleon's total defeat.

      European natural gas and crude oil is a tiny fraction of the necessary consumption, same goes for most mineral resources. Fishing, forestry, and agriculture are not the basis for industrial wealth. Solar and wind potential is largely pointless without the fossil fuels to manufacture the wind turbines and solar panels.

      I suspect that the fact that the worst corruption scandals are behind us are not because of decreasing corruption but because much of it at the highest levels has been legalised. (subjective ofc)

    7. The Napoleonic battles are not really relevant to today. I mentioned Suvorov becuase he was the last one who got military successes with Russian troops that were clearly based on some qualities.

      Still, corrections:
      Battle of Klyastitsy - Russian numerical superiority, draw
      Battle of Krasnoi - Russian numerical superiority (and superiority in horses, artillery)
      Battle of Chashniki - Russian numerical superiority
      Battle of Smoliani - about equal forces, but also about equal losses despite the Russian forces being in a much better shape
      Battle of Vyazma - Russian numerical superiority

    8. The Russians appear in your third short sentence, although I never mentioned the Russians in my article and did not refer to them. This cold war thinking of Russia as an opponent that you have to deter, while at the same time being arrogant and hubris towards the alleged inferior Russians whom you are of course superior - up to your extreme fixation on peer warfare between major powers - all this show in my opinion that you are mentally got stuck in the past. And nothing will change in the echo chamber of your blog here. So it makes no sense that I answer, but i will do anyway.

      I explicitly mentioned economic and cultural attacks, and not even China is far enough away for them. Unconventional warfare, completely new methods of conflict, mass immigration as a weapon, civil war, subversion against states, information warfare, cyber warfare, etc., there are so many possible forms of conflict. And no matter in which: our current social culture is simply unsuitable to endure a serious conflict and especially none conflict of attrition in any kind of warfare. We will lose because we are not social-culturally conflict capable.

      But well, let's stick to the inferior subhuman russians (which have beaten the germans in WW2): taking any bullshit-making Russian conscript-infantry here and today as an indicator of Russian combat power is as abstruse as saying that the Russians prevail with numerical superiority and that in some way this would prove their military inferiority. The opposite is the case: theoretical: if they win by sheer numerical superiority, it does not mean that they are weak, but that they are stronger because they are numerically superior and therefore victorious. It doesn't matter how the win is achieved. In fact, the Russians are not even numerically superior, on the contrary. The current fact is that we are inferior to the Russians in every aspect and in every form of warfare as Western-Europeans TM. And this despite the fact that Europe is by no means inferior in number. We would be largely helpless without the alliance structures of NATO / USA that we have made considerable use of.

      And not because some Russian conscripts are organizing Urban Hip Hop AK orgies, but because in information warfare, cyber warfare, electronic warfare, unconventional warfare, irregular warfare, hybrid warfare etc. Russia is simply much more capable than "Schland", the land of the unicorns, maternity uniforms and leftist-liberal pacifism.

    9. Well, Anon, aside from some disagreements - you can't stay on topic.

      This blog is about defence and freedom. "economic and cultural attacks" are simply not in the scope.
      They are topics for foreign policy, trade policy, economic policy, et cetera - and there is absolutely no reason why military men or military thinking should come into play.

      Russians being numerically superior in historical battles says squat about their strength today. I already documented that Russia is 1:2 numerically inferior to European NATO in military and paramilitary personnel and even worse in PPP-corrected budgeting.
      Their paper strength in regard to hardware impresses me as much as the T-26 and BT-5 inventory of 1940. The Russian military as of today can't even get the replacement of its antique truck inventory right.

      1) The West has its issues.
      2) Russia has much bigger issues.
      3) China is far, far away and not an issue to us.
      4) Non-military threats are not an issue for defence policy.
      5) Small wars and almost all overseas deployment missions are bullshit.
      6) Military spending should be appropriate to the purpose of defence and deterrence, and based on reality, not feelings or fantasies.
      7) The Russian military is rotten and inferior to what European NATO or the EU (even without UK) can muster, but it's still the #1 threat to deter. We could crash our military spending to near-zero if there was no Russian threat to Eastern EU members.

    10. Last Dingo:

      War is not about Defence and not about Freedom. Moreover there is no difference and no true border between war and policy and anything between them. As War is the continuation of politics by other means, also politics are only the continuation of war by other means. The artifical difference is only a result from the cabine war era and is totaly obsolete today. As is conventional peer warfare against eastern underlings. The inability to use and uselessness of conventional armed forces requires other forms of war and therefore a different understanding of defence policy. Otherwise your conventional defence wisdom will be beaten to death by our future enemies. Your thinking seems to me to make the day before yesterday perfect. Therefore you do not understand really that it is irrelevant if the russian military is materially weaker or rotten or whatever. The social-culture of western european countries is inferior for warfare in the broades sense of the term. For that reason the inferior and rotten russian military would defeat us as would the russian policy. It still does.

      Also your focus on deterrence through logical causal chains of material, strategy and so on is imo more a result of your fixation on a perfection of cold war strategies and your lack of understanding of the more and more growing importance of the intangibles of warfare. Point 6 for example illustrates this perfectly. You spoke logically about military spending, based on purpose and reality, and not based on feelings and fantasies. But exact this, feelings and fantasies will be the more decisive factor. A political myth in the sense of sorel must not be true, it must not be logical, it works completly without that. Therefore the stronger fantasy will overcome your logical causal chain because our current social culture in western european countries can and will not endure and is completly unsufficient for conflict. Moreover so as the future wars will look completly different from what you imagine. And i call them wars, because wars they are, and politics they are, there is no difference.

      Any strategy that claims a complete seperation between such artifical areas will fail in future warfare. Moreover the sronger political myth and the stronger intangibles will give the side that have them an decisive advantage in future warfare.

      Our societies are not longer resilient, they are too networked, too digital, too short-lived, too individualized, to materalistic, too logical, too educated, too wealthy, and socially and culturally too weak for future warfare.

      Therefore we will be eliminated as will our societies and our political systems. Or we will change and adapt, which is also possible. The status quo will not survive.

    11. You prefer to think it's all fuzzy, but a fuzzy look at things is a look that doesn't understand things.
      There's a limited set of circumstances in which much military spending or even military violence make sense. I'm writing about those mostly.
      Non-violent action is best left to civilian agents. We've seen the gross failure of approaches that assign civilian tasks like helping the economy or doing diplomacy during the Iraq and AFG occupations.

      You think that our societies are too civil, too soft . This looks to me like a primitive move of making yourself feel superior, feel better.
      To me, any softness is circumstantial. Europeans have a second face - one that's wisely hidden during peacetime. That's exactly as it should be.

    12. Regarding the mentioned battles of the campaign of 1812 - my sources said Russian numerical inferiority to numerical parity. Maybe you counted irregulars?

      Regarding the development of the argument: to nobody's surprise, I disagree with both of you ;)

      First of all, I disagree with the implied social darwinism and extremism of Anon's viewpoint, summarised as: therefore we will either be eliminated or adapt. (Also conveniently tautological - that which survives has automatically adapted to the environment). Secondly, I disagree with his viewpoint that practically all human activity is "war". War is war, it is a subset of human activity, and though important, is far from the only characterising one. I think too much is made of the "national/community perspective". People's lives can of course be influenced - even terminated - by war, but human life is often tangential to any such large social event: to regard human history merely through the lens of large social institutions or top politicians is limiting and distorting. (As an aside, most people today (with some important exceptions) have long since outgrown the small tribal structures in which this perspective can actually make some sense). Nor do I think that Europeans are uniquely weak and soft such that they are incapable of conflict. On an individual level, the dark, bestial traits lurking within humanity are always present, while I would argue that on the collective level the current apparent pacifism of Europeans is mostly self-interest. The defeat in WW2 and the subsequent colonial defeats was the collective defeat of the European model of plunder and colonialism which had emerged in the mid-18th century. When Hitler and the German people marched on the Soviet Union for Lebensraum, they marched almost with the whole of Europe at their side, as the ultimate embodiment of European imperialism and conquest. The defeat of Europe by stronger forces - USA and USSR meant that a rethink was in order - the loss of colonies only reinforced this imperative. This for me is the foundation of a more "peaceful" European attitude, as well as the limited sovereignty of European nations through membership of American and Soviet blocs. Global conditions have only tended to reinforce this attitude since then, because the conditions are simply not there for a renewed militaristic push for markets and resources - the "natives" are much stronger than before, militarily, while still amenable to corruption and manipulation: the Africans still give up huge surplus resources and labour to Europeans and Americans without need of direct military control. Thirdly, "new active measures", "Russo-Chinese political warfare", "hybrid warfare" is bullshit in my opinion, merely instruments of propaganda with very little to no factual basis, spewed by a corrupt press and mendacious politicians - what is missing is a credible description of how these supposed "mechanisms" are actually supposed to work in changing local and global conditions to suit the "evil Russians/Chinese". Finally, I am against the principle that "feelings" beat an objective analysis - even one of morale, for example.

    13. I also must disagree with Herr Ortmann. Analysis of force structure, modernisation, and training, as well as e.g. performance in Chechnya post 1999, Ukraine and Syria makes me think that the Russians are far more capable than you would believe. Capability, however, must always be matched up to intent, and the intent is clearly not one of invading and subduing Europe, but of having defensive overmatch over NATO. Good interior lines of communication and 60 reasonable quality mechanised motor rifle brigade equivalents with VKS support has huge DEFENSIVE overmatch over politically fragmented and largely low quality NATO / EU brigades with their homeopathic quantities of artillery, tanks, undersized logistics & engineers, not to mention small ammunition stocks. US Brigades are not of particularly high quality either - SBCT, IBCT not suitable to modern operations and ABCTs heavy, fuel hungry, and across the Atlantic Ocean. In any case, the Russians are rather slowly and carefully re-building their military potential: despite the frequent references to Reichswehr to Wehrmacht expansion on this blog, the pace of the Russian rearmament is such that they won't become satisfactorily rearmed and retrained before the mid 2030s - this is no 4 year plan.

      This isn't my main criticism though. This would be that your rigidly equate military measures with deterrence, and military deterrence with peace and security, while history would suggest instead that other factors are proportionately far more relevant. Namely: 1) the political landscape in the short and long-term - including e.g. tensions and pressure points, which contribute to internal threat perceptions 2) the objective necessity of some resource and its relative availability through peace as opposed to by war - for example the current conflict between Palestinians and Israelis is also largely over access to water (though overall it is a tribal example not relevant to more civilised places). There is nothing the Russians want from Europe that they can not obtain through trade - and were this to fail, through China, except perhaps for respect by other Europeans. The converse is not true, the rest of Europe needs Russian relatively cheap resources to maintain their living standards 3) the ideology of each bloc or nation - neither Russians nor Chinese are expansionist or demand an ahistorically large sphere of influence. German hypocrisy is brilliant to observe here, after they once again economically vassalized S.E. Europe they have the gall to criticise the Russian near abroad. Ganz zu schweigen about the utterly mad American dreams of world domination. An assessment of these factors should lead to the realisation that the current necessity for European NATO military capability is relatively low with regard to Russia. A similar assessment with regard to African operations might seem different - see the French and their optimisation of their armed forces for neo-colonial conflicts. (I disapprove) Of course to recognise the limited importance of military means for maintaining peace does not imply getting rid of all military capability, even if they are not presently needed. It is important to retain core capabilities so that they could be expanded again should the need arise. I repeat, however, that it is unwise to focus overmuch on purely military factors and e.g. deterrence theory in securing peace.

      Lastly, I have no doubts whatsoever that the Europeans have a second face and that this could arise again - this is one of my primary concerns - that should the post-WW2 situation change enough that Europeans might once again put on their "crusading armour" and turn to pillage and conquest. In the end we would bring destruction onto ourselves once again.

    14. Well, that's a summary of the Russian perspective.

      The few exports of Russia are not terribly cheap and sure don't matter much to EU prosperity. The talk about vassalization is nonsense.
      Germany is not interested in SE Europe. We are looking West and East - it's the Austrians who focused on SE Europe. Germany merely got pressured to give much money to Greece in order to avoid escalation of the economic crisis. Our interest is in getting said money back / avoiding that we have to pay on all the loans we guaranteed.
      Meanwhile, it's a widespread opinion (and a quite supportable one) that the Italians and Greeks want continuous and substantial transfers from Northern/Central Europe to Mediterranean Europe.

    15. Vassalization refers to German (and French banks) & the ownership and dividend structures of large chunks of the SE European and Polish economies - similar to circa 1880's Europe funnily enough.

      I don't know what the Greeks want. Italians have no such desire - maybe some in the South, as an expansion of the continuous & substantial transfers from Northern Italy. But I don't think it's national policy.

    16. *edit: Vassalization also refers to the political neutralisation of S.E. Europe + Poland by inducting them into the EU. Polish nationalist politicians may be somewhat crazy, but the underlying asymmetries are real - regional groupings like the Visegrad group part of the backlash. Indirect German control through Brussels bureaucrats isn't popular - the Germans just showed who functionally controls what by their new ruling of the Constitutional Court.

    17. Last Dingo:

      Because something used to be, it is not necessarily the same today. That is why it is so fundamentally wrong to infer from past events to the present and the future. In particular, this is fundamentally wrong in military matters, because structural extrapolation is the mandatory consequence and this factor is one of the essential ones for military defeats. There are no axioms here and there are no certainties that can be derived from the past, which is why this fixation on the past is the way to military defeat and, overall, the way to wipe out our society.

      Just because Europeans used to be militarily strong, belligerent, imperialist does not mean that Europe is militarily strong today, and especially not that it could become militarily strong again. Throughout human history there are enough examples of slowly dying cultures that were militarily dominant for long periods of time, lost this dominance and never regained it.

      Your often voiced assertion that the Europeans have a second hidden side here and now which could break out under certain circumstances seems to me above all as an attempt by yourself to feel better and superior. However, with regard to "Schland", for example, there is no evidence to support this statement.

      Nothing is wisely hidden here. In every type of conflict, "Schland" is a joke figure cabinet here today and will remain so. It is also highly doubtful whether other Western European countries will be raised again.

      And I'm not just talking about purely civil matters that should be separated from the military question, I'm talking explicitly about conflicts, about struggle. The struggles of the near future will take completely different forms than the classic west vs east conventional warfare that you have in mind. Let's take illegal mass immigration as a weapon as an example. Because of our weakness and blackmail, it will be used and effective. The first threat (and nothing more) of this kind has already occurred with the events on the Turkish-Greek border. "Schland" is unable to use the force necessary to solve such an attack, neither is most of the Western European countries.

      Your dream of a hidden second face of the Europeans simply does not apply. Reality is an absurd weakness perceived worldwide and nothing behind it.

      The weakness especially of the Germans today and their arrogance and hubris perceived at the same time worldwide are a combination that will make it very difficult for "Schland". If this miserable women's country will survive, it will only be because of its geographically favorable location and the protection of the other countries around it. Nonetheless, we will not even be able to maintain the status quo and instead impoverish indignantly and sink into insignificance as a victim society.

    18. ErGalimba:

      The future wars in which Europe will be involved will in most cases not be about land, raw materials and labor, but about the dissemination and enforcement of memes, the dominance of political myths over other such myths. It is precisely this view that I complain about that is limited to material factors and that does not understand the essence of most future conflicts. The wars of the near future are about ideas and intangibles, not about raw materials. And since we as societies consist of certain ideas and values, etc., this war threatens our existence as a culture. One could speak of cultural wars, or in the sense of Huntington a clash of civilizations. First of all, this will take the form of proxy wars, both in the Third World and at our external borders, as well as in covert form as an unconventional war in our countries themselves, for example in the form of widespread terrorism and guerrilla warfare in our own country Form of urban guerrillas. For example, a massive right-wing / left-wing / islamic (it does not matter which ideology) extremist wave of terrorism would be a possible form of future war, to which our society, weak and incapable of conflict as it is, could hardly react if you see how overwhelmed our security structures are with the tiniest and pathetically ridiculous "terror" attacks.

      In a nutshell: We do not have the necessary resources or the necessary social culture to survive seriously in future armed conflicts. And cultural inability to fight is the greater evil here and will most likely seal our end.

    19. Anon; you seem scared of your own fantasies.

      The case for European strengths is not from history books, but from facts like this
      and likewise, Russian military weakness

      The 'hidden second face' thing is not just mythology, I've experienced how recruits were formed into soldiers quickly, and easily. Living standards worse than prison cells were accepted. The combination of culture and (somewhat) competent NCOs did that.

      Meanwhile, we see on the national level that paradigms can be shaken off in no time during an emergency.

      All armed conflict is adversarial, it's always about relative strengths. Germany's overall strength looks unmatched in a radius of thousands of kilometres.

      There's room for improvement and too many wasteful policies, but the real world still looks really good for Germans. Italy, Greece, France, Spain, Russia, Turkey - not so much.

    20. Last Dingo:

      It's not about Russia vs Europe, and you don't even seem to understand that. It is about the effects of social culture on fighting power that go far beyond this comparison. For this very reason, the mere comparison of the numbers of military hardware and their quality and available soldiers and their qualifications says nothing at all about the actual combat strength. In 1940 France, Belgium, Holland and England together were clearly superior to the Germans in both quantity and quality, and were quickly beaten.

      And today Europe could collapse militarily, not because of superior enemy forces, not even because the enemy would be strategically and tactically superior, but because of our culture and society, which is unsuitable for serious warfare (too much technology, too much networking, too much dependence on certain assets) , too high sensitivity for relatively low interference).

      And that at some point in the 90s you saw that Luftwaffe soldiers in Goslar were accommodated in an 8-man room or 12-man room does not mean that these soldiers had any fighting strength because they accepted poor accommodation. Moreover as i was at the same time also starting my military career in the Heer i can asure you, that even our rougher everyday military life is of no use in relation to the question of whether we are able to use organized violence against other groups to the extent necessary. All this soldiery and trampling does not really create combat power. Even then, there was no basis for it and there are worlds between then and now.

      It is precisely because of this fuss that I am a decisive critic of this traditional pseudo-soldier jumping jack. We would need a real futurism militarily that would blow up the old ways completely behind us.

      In addition, the conscription army in which you were socialized and which was still drawn from the Cold War is no longer comparable with the contemporary soldiers of the German Armed Forces. In the past 20 years the basic social-cultural flow in "Schland" has changed dramatically.

      And your so-called paradigms, which have been moderately abolished here by Corona times alibi, show even more clearly how incapable of action this society is. In fact, alibi measures were only taken without fear and not serious measures.

      In conclusion I can agree with you that the world for "Schland" looks very good here and today. As I wrote it, "Schland" is surrounded by other countries that cover it to a large extent and the geographic location is very advantageous at the moment. But it won't stay that way indefinitely.

    21. I could go on about how poorly-suited for war the German society looked prior to WW1 and WW2, but I suppose it's best to agree to disagree.

  4. Australia had its 99th death today. Most are from cruise ships and a lot from the Ruby Princess. Travellers are most of the rest although one nursing home has had a lot of dead residents.

    So politicians in Australia and New Zealand, after a spring and summer of bushfires disasters in Australia, did what the public servants told them too.

    Our economy is dislocated due to Sars-Cov-2. China is punishing us. But both dislocations at once is paying only one price for it not two.

    We will come out of this stronger.