UK sends 30 elite troops and 2,000 anti-tank weapons to Ukraine amid fears of Russian invasion


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People vastly overestimate this "tanking of economy" as they compare value of Russian currency to US dollar. Which is not exactly correct. I mean - yeah, it has dropped from 0.029 dollars per ruble in early 2014 to 0.016 in 2016 to 0.013 currently. It looks like a huge drop, sure.

But then check out country that was not hit by sanctions at all and in fact their economy was growing. Say, Poland. From 0.33 in 2014 to 0.25 in 2016 to 0.25 today.

It's more of dollar value increasing (even compared to Euro) between 2014 and 2022.

Russia as a country is primarily exporting resources meaning that lower value of their own currency is not as much of a problem as you might think. They also have a huge internal market and can trade with China directly. Their usual citizens are hurt by skyrocketing electronics and imported prices but on a country scale scope is much lower than you might imagine.

Ultimately while I certainly don't like Putin's decision... there is merit in it.

First - it weakens NATO. Germany does not want to impose heavy sanctions on Russia. USA straight out says that their response will only be "proportional to the scale of the invasion". Yeah, Ukraine is NOT a member of NATO but a lot of other countries nearby are and many are not exactly happy about what's currently unfolding.

Second - Putin probably does not need entire Ukraine. They will take a big eastern chunk of it if possible with most of the economic infrastructure. It will also allow them to manage Crimea more efficiently - as right now they need to bring water to it from Russia as Ukraine cut off the supply (unsurprisingly enough).

Third - the longer Russia waits the worse it gets. 2000 anti tank weapons right now, over 300k active personel, more tanks/airplanes etc. Ukraine has been arming up for the past 8 years. Wait another 5 and Russia might physically be unable to actually win. In fact they might very well lose Crimea altogether in case of counterstrike in a decade. The fact that they have to launch a full scale invasion with support of navy and airforce proves that. Russia's strength is near-superpower on paper but it's spread thin as they have to station a lot of troops on Chinese border, to quell civil unrests, send to their allies/unwilling allies (like Kazakhstan now).

Fourth - rich Ukraine is a PR nightmare. It would outright show to Russians that West is better. It's a horrible reason to wage war from normal person's perspective but if you are an oligarch and you realize that citizens do NOT like the fact that every other country has higher standards of living and are organizing more and more mass protests... you have to treat this seriously.

Fifth - Europe IS moving to renewable energy. France is happily exporting it's nuclear reactors tech and is heavily lobbing to classify it as green energy. Germany is opposing this notion but they are one of the few countries to do so. Solar panels/wind etc are unstable but they still provide electricity regardless of presence or absence of russian gas. This is a threat to entire Russian economy. Right now they can invade Ukraine and Europe can't react too harshly. But what about next 15 years? If Russian gas and coal is no longer needed then suddenly all these NATO bases and neighbouring countries become a huge threat in Russia's eyes. So you want to grab a bigger slice of a cake while it is still possible.

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