Bushwhack In Bryansk: Mordor’s Skies Are No Longer Safe

Andrew Tanner
11 min readMay 15

Few things bring joy to my heart like seeing Ukraine bring Cossack style warfare to the skies.

Who needs air superiority when you can extend an air denial bubble into your enemy’s territory anyway?

For the record, part of the reason Western military analysts keep being surprised by Ukraine is that they’re trapped in a false binary.

They have been trained to believe that there’s the Soviet way and the Western — but this is just silly.

A third style of warfare is more common and likely more effective than either: the trick is, it only works if you’re defending your home turf.

Invading a neighbor and trying to destroy their identity as a people, as Putin sent his orcs to do? That’s the opposite of self defense. You couldn’t get a Western or a Cossack army to even do it.

Look, hundreds of thousands of US citizens trained to occupy Iraq. But for all the evils that the occupation committed, the USA never tried to destroy the Iraqi national identity. The opposite was the case: US leaders insisted on keeping the fiction of sovereign Iraq intact for geopolitical reasons even though it probably would have been better off broken apart.

That more or less happened anyway in the Iraqi Civil War, which friends of mine were caught in the middle of as soldiers in the surge.

Regardless, for all the war crimes the USA committed in Iraq, outright genocide was never one of them.

Ukraine has taken the global spirit of resistance against an aggressor and given it material form: anyone who claims to care about the future, of humanity, or basic morality has no option but to support Ukraine’s fight for freedom from Moscow’s yoke.

Fortunately, the old anarchist Cossack spirit is alive and well in Ukraine, as is its characteristically opportunistic style of warfare.

Ukraine has managed to couple centralized planning of operations with decentralized execution to an astonishing degree, and it shows.

Now, thanks to Ukraine finally taking belated delivery of two Patriot air defense systems, one from the USA and the other a joint effort by Germany and the Netherlands — the latter clearly after some deserved revenge for the MH-17 shootdown back when this all began in 2014 — the war for Ukraine’s skies is turning as surely as the battle on the ground.

Andrew Tanner

Writes Rogue Systems Recon on Substack. Cat fanatic. Author of many books. Anti-partisan. West Coast = Only Coast :P Slava Ukraini! Heroiam Slava!