Peter Zeihan

Geopolitical Strategist

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Commentary

Ukraine assaults on Russian container radar signals paradigm shift

May 30

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Peter Zeihan

Geopolitical Strategist

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In April 2024, Ukraine launched an attack hundreds of miles into Russian territory that took out a Russian radar system. The Ukrainian drones had struck a facility housing a 29B6 Container Radar, a Russian early warning system designed to detect incoming threats from thousands of miles away, including long-range ballistic missiles.

Watch the above video as Straight Arrow News contributor Peter Zeihan shares his concern about Ukraine’s increasing use of drone assaults on Russian container radars and how it will affect war strategy.


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Excerpted from Peter’s May 30 “Zeihan on Geopolitics” newsletter:

We’re looking at the Ukraine war and the increase of drone assaults on Russia. Specifically, we’ll be looking at the attacks on container radars used for aircraft and ballistic missile detection.

Ukraine is expecting shipments of some Western F-16s, so taking out these container radars could alter the strategic perceptions in Moscow and Washington. When we’re talking about ballistic missile response times, even seconds could alter the outcome… so if these radars go down, who knows what might happen.

All of the new technologies entering the battlefield are necessitating a reevaluation of strategic calculations across all fronts. From shifting away from the mutually assured destruction paradigm, to destabilizing the delicate balance of power, we’re heading towards a new reality.

Hey everybody, Peter Zion here coming to you from Genoa. Today we’re talking about something that I’m a little concerned about a strategic point of view. But first, I want to tell you about a webinar we’ve got coming up next week on the fifth of June, where the issues that I really worry about are going to be in front and center. Issues relating to how cocaine can damage the American Economic experience, how American politics are at the moment in a position makes it difficult to solve American problems, shortages and electricity and critical material processing, and why social media has unexpectedly and problematically become a national security issue. All that in more on the webinar. But for today, it’s a double duty of something I worry about, plus an update on the Ukraine war. Over the past few weeks, the Ukrainians have been launching more and more drone assaults into Russia. And they have now struck something called a container radar in Russia at least three times to different facilities. Container radars are something that allows the Russians to be aware of aircraft within about a 3000 kilometer range. And since the Ukrainians are about to get American and Western F six teens, the Ukrainians would like to take out those radars as much as they can before the new aircraft come into play. But that is not the primary purpose for those radars. The primary purpose is for ballistic missile detection. And when it comes to dealing with nuclear weapons, timing is everything. seconds matter because of the flight times are so short. So if the Ukrainians managed to deliberately, of course, take some of these radars offline, it alters the strategic perceptions on both sides of the Atlantic, whether you’re in Moscow or Washington about what is possible, and how much time you have to prepare for something going horribly, horribly wrong. Now, this sort of readjustment of strategic perceptions, this was always going to happen as the technologies involved change, as we’ve seen with Ukraine, where, as we’ve seen in Saudi Arabia with Iran, the introduction of drones is changing the strategic calculus and in great many ways, and so we were always going to evolve beyond the mutually assured destruction compact that has kept us safe these last 70 years. The idea is that if both sides have the weapons, and if both sides have the ability to check the weapons in flight, then there is this paralyzation if any desire to launch the weapons, because we all go down together? Well, if you’ve damaged the detection methods, then that paralyzation that deliberate paralyzation might be weakened. And all of a sudden, we’re in a bit of a looser strategic situation when it comes to the Big Boy weapons. We’re now in a position where the war has evolved to the point that major strategic questions in both Russia and the United States have to be evaluated through a different lens. And it’s not clear that we’re ready for that on either side. Of course, we’re never ready for that on either side, you introduce a new weapons system, everything changes around it, and we’re now seeing the opening stages of a complete readjustment and how we perceive the wider world

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