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Riding the train to World War III

American and NATO political leaders are escalating the Ukraine conflict straight toward World War III with F-16s to Ukraine.

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Bakhmut after Russian shelling - prelude to World War III?

Hello, this is Darrell Castle with today’s Castle Report. This is Friday the 26th day of May in the year of our Lord 2023. This is also the Friday before Memorial Day which for most of us is a three-day weekend. But it is also a time to pause from our barbecue grills and remember those who have fallen over the roughly two and one-half centuries of America’s existence. In that vein I will be talking about America’s latest war which it is fighting along with its NATO allies against Russia on the battlefields of Ukraine and on the train to World War III.

Ukraine then and now

Before I start, I must tell you that next weekend my dear wife and I are going to spend some time with our daughter and son-in-law so no Castle Report next week. God willing, I will talk to you again on Friday the 9th of June. Today’s Report concerns the frightening escalation of the war in Ukraine which is obviously a war between America and its NATO allies against Russia. Ukraine is the battlefield and it is remarkably similar to the battlefield the Russians fought on about 80 years ago. That war was fought on the plains of Kursk. This one, just a few miles west of Kursk, is in what is now Ukraine.

The battles raging now are primarily on the eastern border of Ukraine and Russia in virtually the exact area that Germany fought the Soviet Union in some of the greatest armored battles in history. So, the Russians should have that area indelibly etched in their collective memories. Especially since they have been fighting off invaders in that region for centuries. They fought the Mongols, they fought Napoleon, and they fought Hitler. But the difference is that this time the Russians are the invaders or so it seems.

Potential for World War III

Many people have accused me of being on the side of Russia in this war. But I only say that Russia has valid and understandable reasons to not want NATO on its border only 300 miles from Moscow. Would the United States allow an alliance between Russia, China, Iran, and North Korea physically located only 300 miles from Washington D.C.? With this administration I suppose it’s possible but I hope not. This new conflict that Russia is fighting has something that separates it from all the other wars I just mentioned. And that is central to our discussion today.

The thing that makes this conflict so incredibly dangerous is the fact that in just about 15 minutes a great deal of humanity could be removed from the planet along with the elements of nature that make life possible. I point out to you that the government of the United States is constantly flirting with that very disaster by constantly escalating the conflict despite all prior statements to the contrary. President Biden said emphatically no warplanes to Ukraine out of a desire not to escalate and antagonize Russia. But today we will see how he has changed his mind.

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Conflicting statements

The war gets wider and more dangerous just as it seems to be cooling off. The US makes promises or I suppose statements would be a better word. But then it violates the promises or changes to other statements as Ukraine’s position on the battlefield changes. It’s hard to determine the truth about which side is prevailing on the battlefield from day to day. But one thing is certain. Ukraine is being destroyed by this war and it is starting to look like Hamburg after World War II. When Ukraine loses a battle as it apparently has in Bakhmut, the US will escalate and send in new weapons to make it worse.

The recent fighting in Bakhmut which it is now clear that the Russians prevailed is a case in point. The city had a population of about 70,000 before the two sides decided to use it as a battleground. It now has a population of about zero and the buildings literally look like bombed out German cities. Go on the internet and look at a picture of it; you will see what war does for a city. I ask myself why the escalation that we are seeing now? The answer must be that the Russians are starting to gain the upper hand. That leaves only a few options. One option would be negotiations to find a diplomatic solution. The other is escalation to make it worse – and that is the one Washington has chosen.

Escalation Washington promised would not happen

Just on a brief inventory Washington promised that it would not provide modern tanks to the struggle. But now modern tanks are provided from the US, Germany, and the UK. There would be no long-range missiles capable of reaching deep into Russia. But now such missiles with a 2000km range have been and are being provided. There would be no attacks on Russian soil of any kind ever. Now it seems that Zelensky supposedly went behind President Biden’s back to the NATO allies for the OK to attack in Russia. In addition, a Ukrainian kill team openly admits that it has conducted assassinations inside Russia of both military and civilian Russians friendly to Putin and looks for an opportunity to assassinate Putin.

The big one, the big escalation which would never happen was new 4th generation fighter aircraft to Ukraine. The President was in Japan this past week attending the summit of G-7 leaders. The guest of honor was the President of Ukraine, Mr. Zelensky – who reportedly has not been in Ukraine for about a month since he has been traveling around the world asking for money and weapons from nations who could simply add the cost to their debt. He wants and has wanted for a long time F-16 Fighter Jets and now he is going to get them.

Those jets could lead to World War III

How could Joe Biden fail to provide these 4th generation fighter jets to Mr. Zelensky who asked for them so nicely? Flying an F-16 is not exactly as easy as flying a Piper Cub so potential pilots must be trained. The president has apparently thought of that and since the jets would be provided eventually anyway Ukrainian pilots have been attending fighter jet school in the US for some time, just in case. The G-7 was probably chosen just to emphasize the deal and get more publicity for it. So, I suppose Washington wanted the whole world to have no doubt that it was escalating the conflict to that of modern war.

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The classified documents leaked by an Air Force Reserve enlisted man a couple of weeks ago revealed that Zelensky had been going behind the back of the Biden administration to accomplish the pilot training beginning in Poland, and also obtaining the capability of attacks deep inside Russia. Speaking in response, a Biden spokesman said no, Zelensky has not violated his pledge. No explanation of the attacks or the initial training was forthcoming, however. Poland seems to be the leader of a NATO coalition including Hungary, Lithuania, Estonia, Czechoslovakia, and Latvia.

United in hate

The leaders of these countries all have at least one thing in common, hatred of Vladimir Putin. The Russian army’s performance in Ukraine seems to have given them confidence that it is nothing to fear. They might want to consider, however, that given the 32 trillion of US debt and the debt ceiling approaching the US might not be available to help them fight Russia as a proxy. Zelensky’s back-channel efforts which Biden says did not happen, seem to have paid off. Thus the G-7 nations have apparently formed a coalition to coordinate pilot training in the countries of Eastern Europe.

What about these F-16’s apparently destined for transfer to Ukraine? When the F-16 was originally available to the US fleet in the mid 70’s one could be built for about $15 million not including armaments. Today it will cost between $30 and $60 million depending on the version. The training of pilots is another problematic issue which isn’t close to being solved. I will say with my limited experience that there is no way in this world that a hastily trained, i.e., a few months, Ukrainian pilot could be a match for the well-trained and experienced Russian pilots in their most advanced fighters.

Dead pilots and millions of dollars’ worth of scrap metal

The result of such an air-to-air engagement would most likely be dead Ukrainian pilots and lost $30 million fighter jets. Pilot training and pilot experience is so much more important than the aircraft they are flying. If one looks at World War II against both Germany and Japan when the US started to prevail and gain control of the air was when the experienced pilots of those countries were almost all dead. It doesn’t make any sense at all, not one little bit of sense. Bbut since when has that stopped our global elite from making war?

The Ukrainians are probably being told that they must use these new jets as defensive weapons only and in no circumstances should they engage Mig-29’s directly. They should not wander across the border into Russia no matter how tempting. That’s what they might be told – but getting them to abide by it is another thing.

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F-16s extremely problematic – here’s why

F-16’s in Ukraine is a stupid escalation of an already stupid war and is probably just something to pacify Zelensky for now. That aircraft is not suited for combat under the primitive conditions currently existing in Ukraine. This is not like those films you see of American planes taking of in the mud of Henderson Field on Guadalcanal and other such places. These are high tech jets which might implode with a rock or other foreign object going through the intake and destroying the engine. The Ukrainian air force is very vulnerable to Russian cruise missiles. As a result, they must constantly move from one primitive field to another, usually fields without maintenance facilities. That is a completely unsuitable environment for F-16’s.

The spare parts problem

The other factor involving F-16’s is the complicated maintenance problems and the availability and cost of spare parts. The Russian jets being a much simpler system require on average 11 hours of maintenance for every one hour of flight. But the F-16 requires 18.5 hours of maintenance for every hour of flight. So a massive maintenance effort is obviously necessary. In addition, Russian air defenses inside Russia and man portable missiles like the stingers Washington gave Ukraine make this a very bad idea. That it makes no sense is irrelevant to those who want to flirt with World War III. Like a moth to a flame, they flirt with nuclear disaster. One battlefield commander releasing one tactical nuke is all that it would take. But our leaders are willing to take that chance. They take their chances with our lives and the lives of millions.

According to National Security Coordinator John Kirby providing F-16’s to Ukraine is a very difficult decision. To avoid directly implicating NATO countries who would be supplying the jets and training the pilots, perhaps the pilots could be trained by the manufacturer of the jet, Lockheed-Martin. Well, if I can see right through that plan for what it is, I’m sure the Russians can as well. The Pentagon, however, seems to think that the providing of weapons for the jets would inevitably pull the US in and it would be unable to avoid direct involvement in the war.

The pathway to World War III is wide open

Think about it folks – the jets must have missiles, rockets and bombs which have to come from surrounding NATO countries. Ukraine does not have suitable maintenance facilities or airfields. So they would have to be based and fly combat missions from surrounding NATO countries. Does that sound like a wise decision or the train to World War III?

Congress has already set aside funds in its pretend budget for training the pilots. So one might reasonably conclude that congress is only paying lip service to caring about escalation. The Pentagon seems worried about all this because it would be sending the F-16 in against clearly superior Russian jets. The US F-22 fighter is more than a match for any aircraft in the world. But even Joe Biden is not about to put those in the hands of inexperienced Ukrainian pilots. The Pentagon generals might enjoy their perks and their retirement at Lockheed-Martin, but that doesn’t mean they are stupid. Russian state of the art air defense systems and superior Russian Jets, well let me think, is this a good idea or not. No, but what the hey, let’s go ahead and do it anyway.

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Finally, folks, none of the people I’ve been talking about are worthy of those we will remember on Monday.

At least that’s the way I see it.

Until next time folks,

This is Darrell Castle.

About the image

Bakhmut after Russian shelling, 2022-09-15 (15)” by АрміяInform is licensed under CC BY 4.0 .

From CastleReport.us; appears by permission.

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Attorney at Law at | dlcastle@castlereport.us | Website | + posts

Darrell Castle is an attorney in Memphis, Tennessee, a former USMC Combat Officer, 2008 Vice Presidential nominee, and 2016 Presidential nominee. Darrell gives his unique analysis of current national and international events from a historical and constitutional perspective. You can subscribe to Darrell's weekly podcast at castlereport.us

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