Video taken directly before an ambush is initiated shows Ukrainian Soldiers standing by for contact inside of a kindergarten, and some people are freaking out about it.
Real quick context before I go on a rant. This video is making some people uncomfortable, so I feel the need to do that ranting thing I do from time to time. This video shows Ukrainian Soldiers waiting in an ambush location watching a Russian column move up the road towards their position. Their ambush location is the inside of an abandoned elementary school, which does indeed make it a legitimate military target regardless of how Reddit feels about it.
On to my TED Talk, you're free to skip this, it's just my opinion.
Ukraine is currently the second most recorded conflict in the history of the world, coming in just behind the eleven year Civil War in Syria. In the following weeks, that statistic will probably change in favor of Ukraine as it's being heavily documented by every single person with a cell phone, including the Ukrainian Soldiers on the ground. With all of that coverage, one thing has become very clear to our entire team. The average civilian was absolutely not prepared to see conflict on this scale ever again.
The GWoT brought on a false sense of security when it comes to war and conflict. For over twenty years we fought in Iraq and Afghanistan. While tens of thousands of American and Allied Nation service members were injured in the fighting, the total human life toll incurred by our troops and the civilians in the occupied countries was substantially lower than in a normal conflict. This is in part due to advances in ballistic protection and precision guided munitions, but mostly it's due to the disparity in equipment between professional Soldiers and the rag-tag groups of Guerilla fighters we faced throughout both OIF and OEF.
How does that matter in context to the current conflict we're seeing? Here's the deal. War is Hell on any scale. The more powerful the adversaries, the more hellacious the fighting on the ground becomes. In World War One and World War Two, we saw tens of millions of Soldiers and civilians killed in the fighting. In Korea and in Vietnam until December of 1965, the casualties were slightly reduced, but still absolutely through the roof as the groups engaged were still professional military fighting forces. It was in Vietnam that we got our first taste of the public watching war in almost real time, and that fighting was against a guerilla faction intent on bleeding their adversaries dry over time, similar to what we've seen throughout the GWoT.
It's a different style of warfighting when you're dealing with Guerilla opponents against an actual professional military. You have a smaller force of irregular fighters bleeding their adversary dry over time. The casualty numbers lie mainly in injuries and damages to infrastructure and equipment. The monetary cost of War is not so bloody for the public to see, and that makes the situation more palatable. In a war between two professional military super-powers however, the game looks much different.
In the case of a professional war, both sides are armed with professional warfighting equipment, and their objective lies in destroying the other military's units entirely. This incurs thousands of casualties per day, and yes Civilians can easily get caught up and spit out of the war machine as well, without much attention being shown to it. What we're looking at right now is the first time a war between two professional military fighting forces has been broadcast to the world in real time, and the public is starting to realize that they really just don't have the stomach to watch real Soldiers soldier against one another. War is an inherently violent and uncomfortable thing to witness.
Regardless of how you feel about it, this type of video will continue to persist. In fact, this video is child's play compared to what I'm sure we'll be seeing soon. We will see Ukrainian Soldiers using kindergartens and even hospitals as firing positions. We will continue to see Russian Soldiers ambushing random vehicles on the side of the road. For the duration, we're going to see errant shells impacting with civilian occupied territories causing casualties, and no amount of memes about the size of President Zelenskyy's testicles is going to change the outcome. People are going to die. Places are going to be destroyed. Things are going to be captured on film in the next few months that make five Marine Scout Snipers taking a leak on a dead Taliban seem like an average Sunday at the park.
That's just the nature of a real war, and what we're seeing between Ukraine and Russia is nothing less than that. Thank you for coming to my TED Talk