Winning: The Ukrainian Threat to Russia


May 7, 2024: Ukraine has been carrying out long range attacks into Russia against economic targets. It uses locally built UAVs (Unmanned Aerial Vehicles) to carry out these attacks, which have done considerable damage to Russian petroleum and natural gas supply sites. The losses have been so heavy that the U.S. government has given Russia relief from economic sanctions on its oil exports, the same as it has done for Iran. Currently worldwide oil production is 83 million barrels a day. The United States produces 13.3 billion barrels, followed by Russia with 10 million and Saudi Arabia with 9 million. The United States is also the largest consumer of oil, requiring 19 million barrels a day, followed by China at 14.3 million, India at 5.2 million, Saudi Arabia at 3.8 million and Russia at 3.6 million.

The destruction of Russian oil supplies is a major problem for Russia, although a minor one for American consumers. For the Ukrainians it is an example of how they are inflicting major damage on the Russian economy. Russia is also suffering from economic sanctions imposed by NATO nations. Russia is very dependent on technology and specialized equipment available only from NATO nations. Most of those items are no longer available to Russia, although Russia can arrange to smuggle in some items at great cost. China has reversed an earlier policy and is now supplying Russia with high tech equipment it can no longer obtain from NATO countries because of sanctions.

Russian leaders are dismayed at how effective the Ukrainians have been at destroying valuable Russian economic assets with long range UAVs attacks. Not only do most of the Ukrainian UAVs manage to evade Russian air defense systems, but the attacks on petroleum storage sites usually result in spectacular, difficult to extinguish and long lasting fires. These fires are visible to many Russian civilians who no longer accept the government explanation that the fires were the result of accidents. Sometimes the Russian oil storage sites are near factories that use that fuel for their operations. When the factories go up in flames along with the oil supplies, many Russians become unemployed. The damage is even more widespread because the large oil losses have caused shortages for Russian consumers. The Ukrainian attacks have reduced oil production and refining in Russia by twelve percent. Russia has banned Russian oil exports until the internal supplies of oil return to normal levels.




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