Putin & Xi are both on tigers they can’t climb off.
For Putin, it is the war in Ukraine which most analysts now agree will grind on well into next year…
Putin still wants most of Ukraine, war outlook grim -U.S. intelligence chief
Russian President Vladimir Putin still wants to seize most of Ukraine, but his forces are so degraded by combat that they likely can only achieve incremental gains in the near term, the top U.S. intelligence officer said Wednesday.
Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines, outlining the current U.S. intelligence assessment of the more than four-month war, said that the consensus of U.S. spy agencies is that it will grind on “for an extended period of time.”
…for Xi it is China’s zero covid stance that the CCP now see as essential after boasting endlessly of how they had conquered Covid while the weak West struggled with it…
Alarm in Beijing after announcement zero-Covid policy may last five years
Authorities in Beijing have sparked confusion and alarm after announcing the strict zero-Covid policy could be in place for the next five years, including mass mandatory testing and travel restrictions.
…both despots face existential crisis.
Putin can not risk losing in the Ukraine and I fear will use a battlefield nuke in a sick attempt to cauterize his self inflicted wound by vaporising it. His reign of damage will not end with the Ukraine, and the longer the war goes on, more economic pain for the West, pain I think Russia will strategically see as vital if they want to try and drag themselves out of this blunder.
Xi has staked his reputation on beating covid and have endlessly boasted their superiority in dealing with the pandemic as opposed to the West.
The pain the people of China have endured starts becoming a threat to a paranoid and authoritarian regime and their urgent need to invent an external enemy to fight to take domestic attention away from their own blunders starts becoming necessary.
Putin and Xi have climbed high on their tigers, now they need to try and get off them without being clawed to death.
The rest of us will be forced to live with their attempts to dismount.
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