Zelenskyy runs circles around Putin’s May 9 Russia Victory Day celebrations

0 31

Putin’s Russia is going down the drain. Even the May 9 parade was a fizzle. On the Victory Day celebrations, Russia lost hands down to Zelenskyy and Ukraine.

Let’s stack it up. 

May 9 was supposed to by Vladimir Putin’s big day, as the West waited for war plans and nuclear threats. 

PUTIN ACCUSES THE WEST OF BACKING THREATS OF ‘NUCLEAR WAR,’ PROVOKING UKRAINE CONFLICT

Once again, Zelenskyy ran circles around the Russian propaganda machine. He started with his appearance at a virtual G-7 meeting on Sunday. Super annoying, because Putin once belonged to the G-8, before he was kicked out.

At the same time, First Lady Jill Biden visited inside western Ukraine with Ukraine’s First Lady Olena Zelenska.  

Zelenskyy runs circles around Putin's May 9 Russia Victory Day celebrations

First lady Jill Biden meets with Olena Zelenska, spouse of Ukrainian’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, at School 6, a public school that has taken in displaced students in Uzhhorod, Ukraine, Sunday, May 8, 2022. 
(AP Photo/Susan Walsh, Pool)

The canny pair took no reporters along, so it was all about pictures of two beautiful mothers with bouquets.  To top it off, Bono played U-2 songs in the Kyiv subway and Zelenskyy presented a special award to Patron, Ukraine’s bomb-sniffing Jack Russell terrier.

Could Putin top that? No. Maybe they are great at cyber war, but Putin’s a failure on the world stage.

The May 9 parade, an annual day to commemorate Russia’s victory over the Nazis in World War II, is supposed to be like Memorial Day, Veterans’ Day and July Fourth rolled into one. Over the years, Putin dramatized the common memories of sacrifice in part to bind Russia’s disparate peoples together. 

Putin was counting on May 9 patriotism to convince Russians the mounting combat losses are heroic sacrifice like their grandparents made. 

Zelenskyy runs circles around Putin's May 9 Russia Victory Day celebrations

Zelenskyy and Putin

What we saw instead Putin in an old rain coat tottering along Red Square. He kept his speech short with a full blast on how the war in Ukraine was the fault of Nazis, the U.S. and NATO.  Nothing new. 

RUSSIAN SPACE AGENCY CHIEF BOASTS NUCLEAR CAPABILITIES, CLAIMS NATO WOULD LOSE ‘IN 30 MINUTES’

Putin didn’t dare raise expectations by expanding the “special military operation” into a wider war. He did acknowledge Russia casualties, saying “the death of every soldier and officer is painful for us.” 

Putin’s biggest news? He signed a decree giving money and support to families of dead and wounded soldiers. A month ago, NATO estimated Russian combat deaths were already as high as 15,000.   

Zelenskyy runs circles around Putin's May 9 Russia Victory Day celebrations

FILE – Russian President Vladimir Putin watches an air parade on Victory Day, which marks the anniversary of the victory over Nazi Germany in World War Two, amid the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) in central Moscow, Russia May 9, 2020. 
(Sputnik/Alexei Druzhinin/Kremlin via REUTERS  )

The parade was downsized. Of course, there was a show of intercontinental ballistic missiles, a reminder that Russia has over 6,000 nuclear warheads, more than any other nation, and is rapidly modernizing its nuclear arsenal.

Russia did show off their fat, ultramodern Armata tank. Ironically, the Armata is not deployed to Ukraine, where it would make a feast for Javelin and other anti-tank weapons wielded by Ukraine.

RUSSIA MAY 9 VICTORY DAY: WHY IS THE DAY SO SIGNIFICANT TO PUTIN AND HIS AMBITIONS?

But where was the fighter jet flyover? Eight Russian MiG-29 fighter jets rehearsed the pass over Red Square in Z formation on Sunday. Then they didn’t show up!  

Russia claimed a weather cancellation. My guess? One or more of the MiG-29s came back hard broke with maintenance problems after the practice flight, and Russia couldn’t muster the parts or people to repair them fast enough.

Zelenskyy runs circles around Putin's May 9 Russia Victory Day celebrations

The reality is the war is destroying Russia, too, even if Putin won’t admit it. Russia’s combat losses include 40 colonels and 12 generals, decimating the top-down leadership relied on by the military. (On that point, I doubt Ukraine needs help targeting top commanders.  Russian generals travel with an entourage and an itinerary; Ukraine killed two at the same airfield on different days.)

CLICK HERE TO GET THE OPINION NEWSLETTER

Russia can’t afford the combat losses.  At 146 million, Russia’s population is smaller than it was in 2000 when Putin came to power – this, despite adding 2 million people with the annexation of Crimea in 2014.  The 20-24 age group is small because of birth rate declines from 1993 to 2007. That’s the soldier age group taking the highest casualties in Ukraine.

Zelenskyy runs circles around Putin's May 9 Russia Victory Day celebrations

Russian self-propelled artillery vehicles, tanks and military vehicles roll along Tverskaya street toward Red Square during a rehearsal for the Victory Day military parade in Moscow, Russia, on Thursday, April 28.
(AP)

On Monday, Putin himself again looked puffy and unhealthy.  This is not the same Putin who once rode horses bare-chested and attended lots of global meetings where he made sarcastic remarks to world leaders.

Zelenskyy got it right. “Russia has forgotten everything that was important to the victors of World War II,” he said Sunday. 

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

In reality, Ukraine is shifting to the attack at Kharkhiv and Izyum.  Expect Ukraine’s counteroffensive to sharpen in the next few weeks as more weapons arrive. 

After Putin loses the Ukraine war, and I believe he ultimately will, Russia will be in deep trouble for decades. 

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE FROM REBECCA GRANT 

Source

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.