Living with Long Putin, and His War of Choice

Ukraine Is a Portal

Anyone thinking that Putin was bluffing to gain concessions from NATO and the West can retire those notions. The situation in Ukraine is rapidly unfolding. Putin’s unhinged speech Monday surprised anyone expecting a cold rationalist; they heard instead a lengthy unhinged rant outlining a false, bad-faith version of Russian, Ukrainian, and world history crafted to justify his actions. And this will not likely be a quick so-called “regime change,” but rather a long, protracted cascade of world events… the sort of “long Putin” we’ve all dreaded, with life-long symptoms and health outcomes no one can anticipate.

As I’m typing this (4pm, February 23) Ukraine is the target of a widespread, data-wiping cyber attack. In the last hour, a chemical plant in Crimea was evacuated. Ukraine is surrounded; Russian troops are in the Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics, and the United States has called Putin’s recognition of these territories an “invasion.” That invasion should be viewed as a one-way, irreversible portal into another timeline. We are now living in a full blown hybrid war that has been snowballing for years, and more rapidly in the last three months.

The slog ahead will reshape the world as we know it.

Some of What We See Now

  • Ukraine appears to be on the brink of a full scale invasion. (NY Times)
  • A major false-flag operation may be imminent against the Titan chemical plant in Armyansk, Crimea.
  • Kharkiv airport is temporarily closed; people are having trouble leaving Ukraine, some because they don’t have their vaccine cards.
  • As many as 5 million refugees could be displaced from Ukraine in the near term.
  • Widespread cyber attacks are expected in the US, Canada, and Europe.
  • Ukraine will be testing a three day disconnection from Russia’s power grid starting tomorrow.
  • German political parties are trying to enact a ban of cryptocurrencies across Europe. Update: it looks like it won’t take effect until 2025.
  • Concern is growing that Russia may try to use cryptocurrencies to avoid sanctions.
  • Iskander hypersonic missiles have been deployed around Ukraine; these missiles have conventional, nuclear, and EMP warheads. An EMP device, heretofore unused, could take out electronics over a wide area and include NATO targets on the ground and in the air.
  • Russia claims to have a variety of other advanced weapons which may be deployed. While self-reported claims of their capabilities should be qualified, novel weapons systems may be deployed that are difficult to quickly triage in terms of severity or impact.
  • US intelligence has claimed Russia has prepared lists of people to either kill or capture in an invasion.
  • Cryptocurrency will be an increasingly active front for hybrid warfare in the West. I recorded a two hour podcast episode about it today with expert Stephen Diehl (“The Crypto Lie”).
  • Ginni Thomas (wife of Clarence) has suggested that people buy gold to protect themselves against Biden’s “War on Russia.”
  • Ukraine Parliament has declared a state of emergency.
  • The Kremlin claims that separatists have requested help from Russia.
  • Various trucker convoys are en route to Washington D.C.; the National Guard has been deployed and will be in the area until at least March 7th.
  • We’re seeing a very large ramp up of disinformation associated with Putin’s illegal actions. Expect voices on both the left and right to be spouting nonsense, and a dizzying, incomprehensible rush of noise designed to destroy the capacity for sense-making. Expect the President and NATO to be undermined at every possible turn.
  • Attacks of all kinds are expected in the US and elsewhere, and should not be considered a “distraction” from Ukraine; rather Putin, as was clear in his speech Monday, has declared war on the entirety of the West. What we will be dealing with is a global hybrid war theater, with an active Fifth Column consisting of people on both the left and the right. Look at people’s actions, words, and alignments — not their party affiliation or other labels. Cognitive bias is extremely strong and we should each attempt to fully subjugate it in favor of more analytical evaluations.
  • Russia has issued a “Notice to Airmen” (NOTAM) closing airspace in Ukraine until May 18, 2022 — three months from now, suggesting a major, long term operation.
  • Please follow my Twitter feed (@davetroy) for live updates on important developments. I will be doing my best to share only the most pertinent information and trusted sources. Twitter Spaces are a useful resources too (as long as they’re available) but be careful of disinformation actors. Walter Lekh, Monique Camarra, Josh Manning, Felix Nuno, and a few others are reliable sources and if they are leading a space you can likely trust it.

Because events will be unfolding rapidly, it will be difficult to do in-depth, big-picture analysis. Accordingly, I will shift gears a bit for Situation Report updates during this period to 1) focus on short, timely updates that may include information NOT available on mainstream channels, 2) send less frequent updates focused on deeper analysis. At times like this, we need less, better information vs. voluminous, worse information.

This week I also transitioned my audio series “Crypto, Gold, Oil, and Fascism: How We Got Here and How to Fix It” into a new podcast called “Dave Troy Presents…” now available wherever you get your podcasts.

We just released two new episodes, “Episode 10: Inside the Catholic Fascist Right with Frank Cocozzelli” and “Epsiode 11: The Crypto Lie with Stephen Diehl.” Thanks to our friends at Bunker Crew Media for distribution assistance, and especially Grant DeSimone for production support.

The next few months, or even years, are likely to be extremely unpleasant. Let us hope for a reversal, even as it is unlikely. Events in Taiwan may start to unfold soon as well; again, let’s hope that portal does not also open up. No one can now predict what lies ahead. Let’s stay safe, stay calm, and do what we can to help each other get through this.

We’re interested in the major historical trends that shape current events. Tips? Ideas? Drop us a line via email or Twitter DM. If you enjoy my work, please consider making a donation to World Central Kitchen, to support their work feeding people in times of need.

For an even deeper dive, check out my other writing here on Medium, and my podcast series, “Dave Troy Presents,” wherever you get your podcasts.



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Dave Troy

Dave Troy

Investigative journalist addressing threats to democracy. Public speaker, writer, podcaster. @davetroy on Twitter. See for contact info.