Ford escape cigarette lighter not working

Just my story. Think I need to talk bout it seance I’m been thinking bout it. Just a easy to cope, You don’t need to teals it or anything

2023.03.24 06:24 Character_Resolve657 Just my story. Think I need to talk bout it seance I’m been thinking bout it. Just a easy to cope, You don’t need to teals it or anything

So my life. Life hit its first bump at five. Dad got locked up. Got 3 to 15. Didn’t understand but I knew I wasn’t gonna get to see my hero. That triggered a chain reaction. At 7 I started lying and stealing. At 12 started smoking and doing other drugs. Dad got out by this time and I was sneaking out to him but mom was keeping me from him. Then be next bump hits. I get locked up. Not going to say why cuz I’m not going to lie to you. But I was locked up for 14 months. First little bit I thought I was hard but found out I wasn’t. Got my ass beat everyday. And from the streets I learned not to snitch but here if you do you get stabbed. So I took it. I knew how to take a punch and I’ve been in fight but not like this. I was always in punished there, always was doin shit to get in trouble. But I got my act straight and learned to fight better. One day they came up in the kitchen part while we were cleaning and I hit it the guy with a pan over the head. Still got my ass beat but didn’t happed again except a few fights. I gained respect. But I knew my place. I bettered myself. Read a lot. Got really good at chess. My body best ever. But I also found peace for the first time ever. I wasn’t always depressed but I never was particularly happy. But I found it. I had a routine, knew my place, some of the guards there I deemed family, and some of the other kids. This is four months in. The days felt like weeks but the weeks felt like days, if that makes sense. I got a job there folding the clothes and shit. We washed everything at the jail. But with that job I got radio headphones. First time I fell in love with music. I escaped with it. To listen I became amazing with my job. I handed out clothes before showers and I knew everyone’s size and it folded perfectly, I had a little more security in life. It felt good. Don’t get me wrong freedom is better but the the first time I was happy. Here’s the next bump. I have a neck pain I find. This is month 5. I wouldn’t find out this set me back for a year. Everyone was telling me it was a basketball injury but I knew it wasn’t. Find out I haven’t ha my final court date cuz they didn’t know what to do with me. My mom wouldn’t take me but wouldn’t let my dad take me. They finally put me in a low secure program.this is 6 months and 12 days in This is good and bad news. It was definitely a lot more freedom. I had a pillow. That was new. I had my own cloths. All to small cuz I grew a lot in 6 months. But they were mine. The doors were unlocked. There were couches. Uncomfortable af couches but they were couches. Still had to ask to get up, ask another human being to go to the bath room. That’s humiliating. But it was a upgrade. I have mris and shit for the neck and was in hella pain but nobody believed me. In the end they wet e going to press charges against my mom for child abandonment so she let my dad have me. Day one was like a acid trip. It was surreal. I had my own room.I could go to the bathroom when I wanted, get food when I wanted, sleep when I want, I had a dog. It was awesome. I still had a lot of pain and couldn’t turn my neck.well one day my dad got me a mri scheduled and I got it. The rushed me into a c coller and put me into a ambulance. We went to the bigger hospital and I was there for 21 days. I was told I have a tumor in my neck. The did a biopsy and turned out I had less then 6 months. That was awesome. I was 14 almost 15 at the time. I got wasted and high every day. Like fuck it. Mom took me back. Imagine that. Only reason I went back was for my siblings. I couldn’t leave them. I hadn’t seen them in two years. That was the hardest part. So I went there 50 50. It turned out the misdiagnosed me. But what I had was super rare. First person in my state to have it. It was a ini1- chardoma. They didn’t the best was to treat it but chemo was the way to go. They just didn’t know what ones were the most effective. I took it tho. And I reacted amazingly. Better then they thought. I had a chance of living now. Basketball was out of the picture now. I had to drop out of high school. But it is what it is. I went through and accepted death. One of my lowest points. High chance I move wrong one day and it on my spinal cord could paralyze me form the neck down and I die. I used to be suicidal and tried to take my own life at one point. I couldn’t care to a extent. I still valued life. I still had time with my siblings. That’s what counts. But I want afraid of it. I’ve been shot at before on multiple occasions. Saw my best friend get shot and killed. I had to decide wether to stop and get shot or keep running so I don’t die but by doing so leaving my friend. I left him. My biggest regret. I would of rather die trying to help him then hold the weight of his death. I put that life behind me. I had a lot of enemies. Couldn’t do to some places without the crew. But that’s the consequences of my actions. But what I’m saying I’ve looked at death in the eyes. Now it’s sitting next to me flirting. Almost fell for it tbh. But like I said I had people. I lived. I got surgery. Post surgery was the lowest point in my life. Not only couldn’t I go to the bathroom whenever I had to have people helps me. I lost all my rights again it felt like. I told myself I’ll die before I get locked up again. I was happy was so depressed there. But anyway. I lost basketball and I lost cross country. Recovery was hard. But I’m here now. 16 years old making hella money. I think it all worked out for me. Still have some minor bumps it nothing I can’t handle.
submitted by Character_Resolve657 to AdviceForTeens [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 06:12 Competitive_Elk_7371 A Million and One Prompts! [20+] [A4A]

Hi everyone! I'm looking for someone to write a long-term roleplay with me! I also enjoy OOC talking so we can chat on the side about new ideas! I prefer to roleplay in 3rd person, but I have no preference for length as long as it adds to the story and I don't mind characters that aren't entirely human as some of mine aren't!
Prompt#1 [OCxOC] A Thousand Stars and Years: Your character is on a ship alone with an android, whether it's on a mission for one of the hundreds of companies among the stars, escaping law enforcement, or simply searching for a planet to colonize. The android is quiet and very distant, a many of the WRA-6 units are, after all, they are just built to maintain ships and mimic human interaction. A close encounter with an odd star changes its behavior one day. I'm thinking this one would be a slow burn and wholesome romance
Prompt#2 [OCxOC] The Forgotten Past: A sleep-deprived scientist by the name of Gaia had spent most of her life finishing her mother's work of a functioning time machine. Accidentally turning the machine on, she is sucked in and taken far back in time, back to a time when humans had magic. Intrigued, she decides to stay and learn more about this primal power, and bring it back.
Prompt#3 [OCxOC] A Calm Storm: Opal is a hard working farmer in the secluded Valley of Woodberry. It is a simple establishment of closely knit people who all help each other out. Your character would stumble across a posting on a newspaper about some woman needing a farm hand and for whatever reason, accept. When you arrive it is clear the woman is with child with no secondary parent in sight. This would be a wholesome slice of life romance!
Prompt#4 [OCxOC] To Prey: There have been sightings of a vicious monster in the nearby woods of a small village in medieval times. Though not one person can agree upon what the monster looks like, the general consensus is to capture and kill the monster. Little does one of the monster hunters know, but the creature hid themselves in their stables that night to mend their deep wounds. This would be a hunter and prey to lovers!
Shoot me a message if any of these prompts catch your eye! I also prefer to roleplay on Discord, but it's not a dealbreaker!
submitted by Competitive_Elk_7371 to Roleplay [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 06:11 Rose11161993 How to I calm myself down after a lifetime of truama?

I work really hard at my job but when people start micro managing me or being overly critical for no reason I start to get really angry. When people tell me " you can't speak that way" " dont think that way" " calm down " " go to your happy place" I loose my shit. Then I refuse to speak to them for long periods after. I feel like I'm being spoken down to and I don't know how to calm the anger before my mouth opens. I feel like this is a trauma response? I grew up in a very bad dilapidated shack of a house with two drunks as parents that neglected me almost completely. By 15 I was drinking constantly, taking prescription pills regularly, smoking cigarettes not going to school almost at all. 10+ years of all that on and off with increasingly bad relationships with men. The last two years ive really been working to improve myself. Stopped pills but my prescriptions my doctor gives me for depression, drink very rarely and never in large amounts. Dropped cigarettes for a vape, not good I know but it's an improvement for me. I just want to get a handle on my hairline trigger of a temper. I feel like it comes when I'm being disrespected and treated like I'm dumb. I feel judged by my older co workers ( most of my issues are with people 40+) for my tattoos. I'm almost 30 I just want to feel like a normal person but God I hate it when people treat me like a child with no life or work experience or like I'm just suppose to kiss the ass of everyone that comes across my path. I'm not overtly rude for no reason, but I do make it clear when I feel disrespected, but it always comes back to me like I'm just suppose to take it?
Edit : sorry if this is segmented oddly, I'm upset and tired
submitted by Rose11161993 to DecidingToBeBetter [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 06:11 Jr-Seeger Psychological Aspects of Survival: Understanding and Managing Stress in a Survival Situation

Psychology of Survival
It takes much more than the konwledge and skills to build shelters, get food, make fires, and travel without the aid of standard navigational devices to live successfuly through a survival situation. Some people with little or no survival people with survival training have not used their skills and died. A key ingredient in any survival situation is the mental attitude of the individual involved. Having survival skills is important; having the will to survive is essential. Without a desk to survive, acquired skills serve little purpose and invaluable knowledge goes to waste. There is a psychology to survival. The soldier in a survival environment faces many stresses that ultimately impact on his mind. These stresses can produce thoughts and emotions that, if poorly understood, can transform a confident, well-trained soldier into an indecisive, ineffective individual with questionable ability to survive. Thus, every soldier must be aware of and be able to recognize those stresses commonly associated with survival. Additionally, it is stresses associated with survival.
A Look at Stress
Before we can understand our psychological reactions in a survival setting, it is helpful to first know a little bit about stress. Stress is not a disease that you cure and eliminate. Instead, it is a condition we all experience. Stress can be described as our reaction to pressure. It is the name given to the experience we have as we physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually respond to life’s tensions.
Need for Stress
We need stress because it has many positive benefits. Stress provides us with challenges; it gives us chances to learn about our values and strengths. Stress can show our ability to handle pressure without breaking; it tests our adaptability and flexibility; it can stimulate us to do our best. Because we usually do not consider unimportant events stressful, stress can also be an excellent indicator of the significance we attach to an event—in other words, it highlights what is important to us. We need to have some stress in our lives, but too much of anything can be bad. The goal is to have stress, but not an excess of it. Too much stress can take its toll on people and organizations. Too much stress leads to distress. Distress causes an uncomfortable tension that we try to escape and, preferably, avoid. Listed below are a few of the common signs of distress you may find in your fellow soldiers or yourself when faced with to much stress:

As you can see, stress can be constructive or destructive. It can encourage or discourage, move us along or stop us dead in our tracks, and make life meaningful or seemingly meaningless. Stress can inspire you to operate successfully and perform at your maximum efficiency in a survival situation. It can also cause you to panic and forget all your training. Key to your survival is your ability to manage the inevitable stresses you will encounter. The survivor is the soldier who works witht his stresses instread of letting his stresses work on him. Any event can lead to stress and, as everyone has experienced, events don’t always come one at a time. Often, stressfl events occur simultaneously. These events are not stress, but they produce it and are called “stressors.” Stressors are the obvious cause while stress is the response. Once the body recognizes the presence of a stressor, it then begins to act to protect itself. In response to a stressor, the body prepares either to “fight or flee.” This prepation involves an internal SOS sent throughout the body. As the body responds to this SOS, several actions take place. The body releases stored fuels (sugar and fats) to provide quick energy; breathing rate increases to supply more oxygen to the blood; muscşe tension increases to prepare for action; blood clotting mechanisms are activated to reduce bleeding from cuts; senses become more acute (hearing becomes more sensitive, eyes become big, smell becomes sharper) so that you are more aware of your surrounding and heart rate and blood pressure rise to provide more blood to the muscles. This protective posture lets a person cope with potential dangers; however, a person connot maintain such a level of alertness indefinitely. Stressors are not courteous; one stressor does not leave because another one arrives. Stressors add up. The cumulative effect of minor stressors can be a major distress if they all happen too close together. As the body’s resistance to stress wears down and the sources of stress continue (or increase), eventually a state of exhaustion arrives. At this point, the ability to resist stress or use it in a positive way gives out and signs of distress appear. Anticipating stressors and developing strategies to cope with them are two ingredients in the effective management of stress. It is therefore essential that the soldier in a survival setting be aware of the types of stressors he will encounter. Let’s take a look at a few of these.
Injury, Illness, or Death Injury, illness, and death are real possibilities a survivor has to face. Perhaps nothing is more stressful than being alone in an unfamiliar environment where you could die from hostile action, an accident, or from eating something lethal. Illness and injury can also add to stress by limiting your ability to maneuver, get food and drink, find shelter, and defend yourself. Even if illness and injury don’t lead to death, they add to stress through the pain and discomfort they generate. It is only by con-trolling the stress associated with the vulnerability to injury, illness, and death that a soldier can have the courage to take the risks associated with survival tasks.
Uncertainly and Lack of Control
Some people have trouble operating in settings where everything is not clear-cut. The only guarantee in survival situation is that nothing is guaranteed. It can be extremely stressful operating on limited information in a setting where you have limited control of your surroundings. This uncertainty and lack of control also add to the stress of being ill, injured, or killed.
Even under the most ideal circumstances, nature is quite formidable. In survival, a soldier will have to contend with the stressors of weather, terrain, and the variety of creatures inhabiting an are. Heat, cold, rain, winds, mountains, swamps, deserts, insects, dangerous reptiles, and other animals are just a few of the challenges awaiting the soldier working to survive. Depending on how a soldier handles the stress of his environment, his surroundings can be either a source of food and protection or can be a cause of extreme discomfort leading to injury, illness, or death.
Hunger and Thirst
Without food and water a person will weaken and eventually die. Thus, getting and preserving food and water takes on increasing importance as the lenght of time in a survival setting increases. For a soldier used to having his provisions issued, foraging can be a big source of stress. Forcing yourself to continue surviving is not easy as you grow more tired. It is possible to become so fatigued that the act of just staying awake is stressful in itself.
There are some advantages to facing adversity with other. As soldiers we learn individual skills, but we train to function as part of a team. Although we, as soldiers, complain about higher headquarters, we become used to the information and guidance it provides, expecially during times of confusion. Being in contanct with others also provides a greater sens of security and a feeling someone is available to help if problems occur. A significant stressor in survival situations is that often a person or team has to rely solely on its own resources. Remember, what is stressful to one person may not be stressful to another. Your experiences, training, personal outlook on life, physical and mental conditioning, and level of self-confidence contribute to what you will find stressful in a survival environment. The object is not to avoid stress, but rather to manage the stressors of survival and make them work for you.
submitted by Jr-Seeger to CarlsNotebook [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 06:11 Competitive_Elk_7371 A Million and One Prompts! [20+] [A4A]

Hi everyone! I'm looking for someone to write a long-term roleplay with me! I also enjoy OOC talking so we can chat on the side about new ideas! I prefer to roleplay in 3rd person, but I have no preference for length as long as it adds to the story and I don't mind characters that aren't entirely human as some of mine aren't!
Prompt#1 [OCxOC] A Thousand Stars and Years: Your character is on a ship alone with an android, whether it's on a mission for one of the hundreds of companies among the stars, escaping law enforcement, or simply searching for a planet to colonize. The android is quiet and very distant, a many of the WRA-6 units are, after all, they are just built to maintain ships and mimic human interaction. A close encounter with an odd star changes its behavior one day. I'm thinking this one would be a slow burn and wholesome romance
Prompt#2 [OCxOC] The Forgotten Past: A sleep-deprived scientist by the name of Gaia had spent most of her life finishing her mother's work of a functioning time machine. Accidentally turning the machine on, she is sucked in and taken far back in time, back to a time when humans had magic. Intrigued, she decides to stay and learn more about this primal power, and bring it back.
Prompt#3 [OCxOC] A Calm Storm: Opal is a hard working farmer in the secluded Valley of Woodberry. It is a simple establishment of closely knit people who all help each other out. Your character would stumble across a posting on a newspaper about some woman needing a farm hand and for whatever reason, accept. When you arrive it is clear the woman is with child with no secondary parent in sight. This would be a wholesome slice of life romance!
Prompt#4 [OCxOC] To Prey: There have been sightings of a vicious monster in the nearby woods of a small village in medieval times. Though not one person can agree upon what the monster looks like, the general consensus is to capture and kill the monster. Little does one of the monster hunters know, but the creature hid themselves in their stables that night to mend their deep wounds. This would be a hunter and prey to lovers!
Shoot me a message if any of these prompts catch your eye! I also prefer to roleplay on Discord, but it's not a dealbreaker!
submitted by Competitive_Elk_7371 to roleplaying [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 06:10 Competitive_Elk_7371 A Million and One Prompts! [20+] [A4A]

Hi everyone! I'm looking for someone to write a long-term roleplay with me! I also enjoy OOC talking so we can chat on the side about new ideas! I prefer to roleplay in 3rd person, but I have no preference for length as long as it adds to the story and I don't mind characters that aren't entirely human as some of mine aren't!
Prompt#1 [OCxOC] A Thousand Stars and Years: Your character is on a ship alone with an android, whether it's on a mission for one of the hundreds of companies among the stars, escaping law enforcement, or simply searching for a planet to colonize. The android is quiet and very distant, a many of the WRA-6 units are, after all, they are just built to maintain ships and mimic human interaction. A close encounter with an odd star changes its behavior one day. I'm thinking this one would be a slow burn and wholesome romance
Prompt#2 [OCxOC] The Forgotten Past: A sleep-deprived scientist by the name of Gaia had spent most of her life finishing her mother's work of a functioning time machine. Accidentally turning the machine on, she is sucked in and taken far back in time, back to a time when humans had magic. Intrigued, she decides to stay and learn more about this primal power, and bring it back.
Prompt#3 [OCxOC] A Calm Storm: Opal is a hard working farmer in the secluded Valley of Woodberry. It is a simple establishment of closely knit people who all help each other out. Your character would stumble across a posting on a newspaper about some woman needing a farm hand and for whatever reason, accept. When you arrive it is clear the woman is with child with no secondary parent in sight. This would be a wholesome slice of life romance!
Prompt#4 [OCxOC] To Prey: There have been sightings of a vicious monster in the nearby woods of a small village in medieval times. Though not one person can agree upon what the monster looks like, the general consensus is to capture and kill the monster. Little does one of the monster hunters know, but the creature hid themselves in their stables that night to mend their deep wounds. This would be a hunter and prey to lovers!
Shoot me a message if any of these prompts catch your eye! I also prefer to roleplay on Discord, but it's not a dealbreaker!
submitted by Competitive_Elk_7371 to RoleplayPartnerSearch [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 06:00 Blazr5402 [ALL] Cute little Pricefield mention in Steph's Story, just thought I'd share (No major spoilers)

submitted by Blazr5402 to Pricefield [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 05:58 AviBledsoe Instagram Experiment: My Analysis.

I created an account to fit in at school and also see what are the addictive effects I wanted to see why people really are hooked on this one thing that I mainly noticed is that you're all that today, then nobody tomorrow.
There's so much overwhelming amounts of "content" That people tend to follow so many accounts that they don't even know you exist. Another thing I hated is the overwhelming mental pull to check people's stories again and AGAIN, even if you KNOW there are one It's created in such a way that forces you to evaluate other's lives over and over, pulling you away from your own and breaking your character.
I even used it to aid my ability in "getting girls" and It was a problem First off, posting these images especially if these people are "popular" in school makes them start shipping and creates TONS of rumors. Next, people would try to "challenge me" as if I were "stealing them" And then others would constantly beg to be in pictures again and again and again. And finally It really did not work. They just cared about the likes and attention by having a new "cameo" of themselves in my pictures on a relatively new account It's only the first 2 days on Instagram that you're "something", then you're "forgotten".
The next problem that's kind of related to this It's the absolute WORST when you have a crush on somebody, and they have social media, especially Instagram. This is because you're obliged to just try to send messages and hoping in vain for a reply and continue looking at her pictures instead of talking to her IRL.
This Instagram as a whole makes your friendships A LOT more distant I noticed, and talking to your crush becomes "impossible" the more you just remark on their follower count and their pictures as well. The next problem is the absolute lack of originality in the posts It really disturbed me how 80% of these stories were either People eating at a restaraunt (Even if it's in-n-out or a fast food place) Tiktok reposts Silly twitter influencers Or the next "Gif" of the supposed "hot girl" from school with censors and filters everywhere with 98726387136183687 KG of makeup on and 1373893 KG of plastic injected into them Like what the actual fuck?
I remember trying to be as myself as possible on there trying to use my own humor, and It influenced my school too much and I had to try WAY too hard to make it work and I didn't like the "popularity" anyways.
Then the next problem is the messaging themselves Remember when I complained about dry texters on discord? On Instagram It's everybody doing that shit ESPECIALLY girls. And then some of them block you for no apparent reason either. Like NO reason. No warning or anything. One thing you talk to them, the message is "seen", then you're blocked. Like what the hell man?
I also hate how you can do the "send me anonymous messages" thing then people ask like the most generic and boring questions EVER, or they will try to trigger you and mentioned that "secret" date you were having in school.
Having this social media forces your brain to want to post every location you visit. And then even if it's something amazing, They don't talk about it in school the next day.
"Your story got 300 likes!" It did fucking not. They were just automatically like a robot hearting the image then go to the next one.
Next problem is that there are just random people who freaking ask you to "go fw this story" or in actual english, Repost it. Like why? I don't talk to you, know you, and you're just trying to get more meaningless likes on instagram and I have to waste my content page promoting your content.
And then people with all of these "spam" accounts that are private and they almost never let you see it, even though every other story is "follow" my spam simultaneously.
Now back to the girls again There's so many in school right? Well looking at and following their instagram accounts are no better, It can just make you confused on who you even want to talk to. And there's too much "information at our fingertips.
These people being brainwashed by the beauty standards posting all of those fake images of themselves, and being bullied for being natural and the fact that you can de-sensitize your brain by viewing too many of them. It's almost the same effect as watching porn basically. I mean most of these people are wearing very moderate to minimal clothing trying to be hot. It can ruin your perspective on reality pretty easily.
The final and probably the most important problem relates to the first one. When you follow so many accounts, whether It's because people asked you to, or you wanted to "keep in touch with everybody at the school", you need to "keep track" of everybody And when you see let's say your friend dating someone you probably like Or someone going to the beach or a theme park Or simply an out-of-the-ordinary image We compare ourselves a lot, and that along with the constant "need" to check every few minutes or so gives us dopamine overload, and information overload. This leads to us being aggressive, insecure, and depressed. Which is one of the main reasons social media is so bad, ESPECIALLY "Instant gratification" Like Facebook, Instagram, and Tik Tok.
We get attracted to our crush's (or crushes' if there's more than 1) cute photos.
We get jealous of someone dating someone else Faster.
We wait in vain for either random people or people you want to know to reply to your message.
We want to keep checking stuff because we feel like we are missing out on what's going on, which brings us back to being invested in everyone else but yourself. We always try to "battle" on here about who has the most likes or who pulled the most bitches and it's just SO pointless.
It will never end as this "content" so called is infinite and forever and repetetive, and the fact that it's forgotten 10 seconds after viewing.
So the conclusion is Don't even try it, even if it's for one person. It's like a dungeon of a video game essentially that's really hard to escape.
And besides because of ALL of these factors just leads to you completely forgetting about who you are.
submitted by AviBledsoe to selfimprovement [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 05:58 One_Imagination952 Should I live in my narcissistic father's apartment?

I live alone and pay my rent but I can barely afford anything and I don't see that will change soon. My father offered his apartment to me but he said if there was any mess there he will throw me out on the street and on various occasions in my life he said he will strangle me, kill me etc. He has his good times but whenever I tried to become closer with him he would start being very controlling and agressive if I don't respond to his phone calls immediately. He lives in another city but he is controlling his tenant too.
I have depression and sometimes I don't have the energy to clean, it's not like my flat is complete mess but sometimes it's not that clean and my father is obsessive about that. He threatened his previous tenants that he will kill them if they don't leave the apartment immediately because they were smoking in the apartment.
I have a cat that is my whole life and my father hates animals in the apartment, he couldn't stand hearing his neigbhor's dog walking, not barking but walking. I am very afraid that he would come up unannounced and throw out my cat and say that he escaped while I am at work. He is capable of that. Or even worse if he would be mad he could kill my cat, that's my worst fear.
I am afraid that he will be violent if something is wrong with the apartment. I was visiting him once and lived two weeks with him and something made him very mad and I thought he was gonna hit me.
So why am I even asking you this? I am afraid that I will end up on the street and my life would be easier if I didn't have to pay rent and barely afford food but I have this fears and I am wondering if it's possible to set him some boundaries.
submitted by One_Imagination952 to raisedbynarcissists [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 05:57 InsideWriter1074 Smoking's Top 4 Impacts on Bodybuilding

Does smoking influence muscle development or does vaping influence muscle development? Indeed, it does. Smoking and vaping isn't just awful for lungs however can likewise harm your muscles as smoking reductions the quantity of veins that carry supplements and oxygen to the leg muscles. Smoking is difficult to stop. Assuming you have been smoking previously, there are high possibilities that you will not have the option to cease this propensity. Indeed, even with a trained eating routine, exercise and right enhancement, you won't obtain the ideal outcomes in lifting weights. Smoking and working out can go together, it is harmful to your wellbeing, and that implies your lifting weights objectives are in danger as well. There are different unsafe impacts of smoking on weight training.
Gain proficiency with the best 4 manners by which smoking influences muscle development and go sans smoke. Your lungs will thank you and your muscles will enlarge with satisfaction.

TOP 4 Impacts OF SMOKING ON Jocks

Cigarettes contain nicotine which makes it habit-forming as smoke in it gives you an impermanent high. The medical problems connected with smoking come from the tobacco's poisonous impacts that come from synthetic substances and these are hurtful to muscle searchers. In this way, working out and smoking is definitely not an extraordinary thought.

SMOKING Decreases YOUR Exercise Execution

Assuming you have been smoking before exercise or smoking after an exercise, you really want to stop that. Do you have at least some idea that a smoker's pulse is 30% quicker than a non-smoker? Indeed, because of which it becomes challenging for a smoker to drive himself to the most extreme during the exercises. Since the heart needs to work harder to guarantee satisfactory course during the exercises. The expanded pulse likewise raises circulatory strain.
As the blood stream diminishes because of limited veins, the functioning muscles don't get sufficient oxygen-rich blood when it is required the most during serious exercises, and that implies you can get into the anaerobic express (a state where your body begins creating lactic corrosive, the explanation for the consuming sensation felt in the muscles) effectively, which prompts exceptionally low perseverance.
Additionally, the carbon monoxide breathed in from cigarettes ties to the blood's hemoglobin, which influences oxygen transport all through the body. Tar in cigarettes gets gathered in the aviation routes and it hampers lung normal purging systems and lungs don't perform at the ideal level, because of which muscles become oxygen-starved, and influences your actual exhibition and lessens perseverance and muscle recuperation rate. At the point when your perseverance goes down, you can't propel yourself through the last reps and in a set. Subsequently, you fabricate less muscle than a non-smoker.


Testosterone level is connected to the muscle building. Muscle cells have receptors for testosterone called androgen receptors. At the point when testosterone ties to the receptors, muscle filaments are kept up with. Without testosterone, upkeep pauses and muscle is debased.

One more gamble of smoking cigarettes is that it can harm the testosterone-creating cells inside the body. With diminishing testosterone level, the muscles begin to go to fat, especially in undesirable zones like chest and stomach. As indicated by a review, low testosterone is supplanted by a chemical called estrogen that is connected to expanded paunch fat or where you least need it.


Smoking is liable for an expansion in the level of a pressure chemical called cortisol, which diminishes the development of testosterone. It likewise diminishes protein blend, a significant necessity for muscle development. In smokers, there is an expanded degree of myostatin, a chemical that represses muscle development diminishes the strength of the muscles and forestalls the conditioning of muscles.


Smoking can cause insulin obstruction, which can immensely affect your muscle-building objectives. Insulin is a protein cum chemical, delivered in the wake of eating carb-rich food sources and functions as a sign for the muscles to retain glucose in the circulation system. Glucose discharges subsequent to consuming dinners and produces ATP energy cells for the body. While when you become insulin safe, the muscles will not answer the sign to assimilate glucose from the blood and your energy levels decline because of over-burden of glucose in the blood.
It causes you to feel tired and keeps you from performing to the ideal level. Insulin opposition hampers the capacity of glycogen. Glycogen is a more extended chain form of glucose and the body's energy stockpiling instrument. Less glycogen implies that your exercise power will be lower than typical. Insulin opposition likewise influences the supplement ingestion of the body and increments fat store, particularly midsection, a total 'no' for the muscle developer.


Stopping smoking can be a piece troublesome because of its mental and actual effect. The nicotine offers a transient and brief high. Same smoking stopping technique doesn't work for each person.
It is critical to perceive the way that it is a sort of dependence and expects help to deal with it. While attempting to stop smoking you make an effort not to wean away from the mental and actual high given by the cigarette, yet unknowingly move out from the circles and colleagues with whom you partake in your smoke, which can be troublesome.
As a matter of fact, stopping smoking is upsetting, which is the reason it is vital to set yourself up for that unpleasant time of stopping by following the underneath referenced things.

Select treatments like laser and needle therapy.

Converse with a companion that can comprehend your stopping process and backing you. It really becomes more straightforward on the off chance that you have an accomplice who is likewise attempting to stop smoking.
A critical piece of stopping is to oversee desires that can make your stopping program fruitful. Track down ways of redirecting your consideration while the desire strikes.
Attempt nicotine substitution treatment as it works for some individuals and merits attempting.
To realize how much smoking is excessively? Simply fail to remember that as to accomplish your working out objectives you need to express bye to smoking.
Try not to lose trust while attempting to stop. Continuously quit will assist your lungs and generally speaking wellbeing that will with aiding you in acquiring muscle. Thus, continue on!
submitted by InsideWriter1074 to u/InsideWriter1074 [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 05:56 Maina_Gaming Cant say this to her so yeah

You are so nice and caring. I hope you still dont view me as this horrible person. I really tried my hardest to be better and I understand that it wasn’t enough and I already did so much damage. Im letting you go and im moving on but a part of me is always gonna wish things turned out differently. This is the first time in my life I genuinely feel like i dont know what to do. I understand all the times you stayed home from middle school bc you were so depressed, i used to not fully understand it but i really do. Its so hard to get you off my mind. I hate that youve moved on i really really hate that idk how youre gonna talk about us. I dont want you to hate me, i dont want you to talk down on our relationship because we both know it was really good. We did work together and we were awesome. I just didn’t know what i wanted and when i finally did, you didnt want the same thing. I stil have hope that one day things we maybe work out and youll text me hi and its be calm, nice and just genuine. Not forced in anyway. It sucks though bc you could just never unblock me on instagram. You might never text me. And the only time we’ve ever ran into each other was when we first met. You ran after me and that was something you wouldnt do but you had the confidence that day to come meet the hot guy on instagram and ask him if he was homophobic for some reason. If i ever do see you in public ill walk up to you and ill ask you that. And ill ask you how youve been. And ill ask you something else. Idk but something. What sucks is im gonna be honest. You were my slut and it was fucking awesome. I hope youre not like that for this guy. Its a genuine fear of mine. One month until that concert where your parents are gone all day. Im not gonna be there i know that, so who will be? I would rather it be z you and s gettinf high outta your minds than anything involving someone else lol. I actually had a really long talk with david about smoking since his gf smokes cigarettes. I think ive learned quite a bit from that. If there ever is a future i think id be okay with you smoking. I think id just wish for it not be like every week like once every two or 3. Idrk why im saying all this. Im just very hurt and angry. I miss you and i still want you back in my life. The meds are kind of helping but they making me super tired 24/7 like 5 hour naps but also 8 hour night sleeps. Just please dont hate me dude. Don’t remember all the times ive begged you in the last month. Im not that pathetic dude. I was really just that in love with you. Ive been thinking about things and youre in a more moved on point where i thought i was. You still care about me i would assume but. You dont LOVE me obviously. I think you just still have love for me. Literally like i said in 9th grade lol. I dont think weve grown apart. I think you pushed me away and i dont blame you. We arent too different people from who we were and i dont think whatever we grow into will be much different. I hope we do meet again one day. Hopefully we can try again. But ik thats far fetched.
submitted by Maina_Gaming to Vent [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 05:55 Zyliaf A review (and ranking) of all the Cover songs - from a casual POV (Part 2 of my series)

Now that all the cover songs are out, I’d thought why not do the same thing that I did for shuffle songs and do a review of all the cover songs and rank them accordingly! Just a few disclaimers: This is completely my own opinion - just because the song is low on the list does not make it a bad song, you are entitled to your own preferences! I will only be judging the song itself (i.e. instrumentals, vocals, arrangement etc) so things like the 3DMV, outfits and card arts will not be considered. I also do not know much about music theory, this is largely from a casual listener's POV so don't expect much in-depth analysis. As usual, highly recommend everyone to give the full songs a listen for the full experience!
7) Starlight Parade - fine & Knights (original - SEKAI NO OWARI)
Oh boy, starting off controversial (finePs & KnightPs please have mercy).
I’ll say this for all of the cover songs, they did a great job pairing units with the songs they’re covering. Their voices gel really well together and, paired with the light instrumentals, create this dreamlike escape akin to what they’re singing about. I think replacing the electric guitar with violins was a nice touch, creating an arrangement that is more symphonic compared to the more upbeat pop rock sound of the original. Why is this in last place then? Well…line distribution. While it is definitely possible for a song to be covered by 9 people (utaite collaborations come to mind), those songs do have one thing in common - they have long, and I mean LONG lyrics that give everyone a relatively equal amount of lines to sing. This song has two 4 line verses. That is not enough for a group consisting of 9 people, especially if you're considering this is (probably) a one-off collaboration so everyone should receive an equal amount of lines, so you end up in a situation with very awkward line distributions such as lines being cut into bits as the singer switches every other second which throws me off a lot. I would rather they sing those lines as a duo or trio instead of splitting it up, especially given how well their voices go together. Maybe it would’ve worked better in groups of 4 or 5, but sometimes too many cooks spoil the broth.
6) Tell Your World - Switch & 2wink with Hatsune Miku and Kagamine Rin/Len (original - kz-livetune ft. Hatsune Miku)
As a long time fan of vocaloids, I would say this - whoever did the tuning for the vocaloids did a good job. However, I have to be honest - on my first listen, my only feeling was disappointment. Compared to the original, the impact just…isn’t there. The arrangement is clean, but I just felt like it was an inferior version of the original and several other covers that I’ve heard. But then, after repeated listens, it slowly started to grow on me. Yes, it is not as impactful as the original, but instead of impact they’ve decided to go for clarity - which is definitely hard to achieve when you’ve got layers of synths blaring in your ears. In fact, the more I listen the more I started to appreciate the stripped down instrumentals and synths so that more focus could be given towards the vocals. And speaking of vocals, I have to give props to Yamamoto Kazutomi (Sora’s VA) because he sounds absolutely amazing in this cover. The best part of the song is definitely the ending where they sing almost acapella with minimal instrumentals - it was completely unexpected but a very creative change that worked out well for them. TLDR, a pretty good cover, although it took quite a few listens before I got used to the change.
5) Yoru ni Kakeru - ALKALOID & Double Face (original - YOASOBI)
As songs become more popular, sometimes their original lyrics get lost along the way. To most casual listeners (especially those who don’t understand japanese), when they first hear the original by YOASOBI, they don’t know they’re vibing along to a song about suicide and depression. Most covers I’ve seen tend to generally forget that, instead focusing on the vocal complexity of the song, because let’s be honest - this song is incredibly hard to sing (Ikura is an extremely talented singer, especially with how effortlessly she reaches the high notes).
Enter ALKALOID and Double Face, who are here to remind us, hey, this song is actually sad and depressing with an extremely melancholic cover of likes that I’ve never heard before - and trust me I’ve listened to tons of covers. And if you think about it, it makes a lot of sense given who’s singing it - one of YOASOBI’s selling points is how clear and crisp Ikura’s vocals are against the backing synth tracks which although tend to stay light can get quite heavy at times (e.g. Shufuku, Monster). Meanwhile, the only 2 members in this group who I think can realistically achieve that are Madara’s and Aira’s - the other 4 members’ have a much darker and deeper tone (Mayoi’s voice would get absolutely lost in all the synths for instance). Their solution? Scale back on the instrumentals, replacing the bass synth with light percussion and adding violins in the chorus. Not only did it create a melancholic vibe that is more representative of the lyrics, it balances out well with the vocals instead of overpowering it. Also, its a more familiar sound because its more in line with the other songs these 2 units have put out before (Stippling and Tsubasa Moratorium comes to mind). This is the definition of a good cover - staying faithful to the original, yet putting your own spin on it to differentiate it from the original.
4) Hamutaro Tottokouta - Ryuseitai & Ra*bits (Hamtaro OP)
Okay I can’t justify having this cover any higher, I apologize to the 8 year old me.
When I was a kid (really exposing my age here), I was absolutely obsessed with Hamtaro. I had Hamtaro bags, pencil cases, stationeries, keychains, fridge magnets, stickers, plushies - if it has Hamtaro on it you’d bet I’ll be begging my parents to buy it for me. And hearing this cover for the first time just hit me with a huge wave of nostalgia. I remember scrambling to wake up at 8am just so I could watch Hamtaro and Doraemon on weekends (meanwhile my adult ass even struggles to roll out of bed before noon on weekends). The modernized yet familiar instrumentals, the refined vocals replacing the childlike slightly off-pitch ones in the original, the nonsensical lyrics, it just reawakens the inner child in me that had me pressing replay so many times. Don’t expect anything life changing from this cover - it is not that kind of song. But is it a lot of fun? Yes. Take me back to my childhood where I was free from responsibilities and all I cared about was some orange hamster and his friends.
3) U.S.A. - Crazy:B & Undead (original - DA PUMP)
I have to say, it’s amazing how much of the original choreography was kept in the 3DMV.
For a nonsensical song, it’s actually really freaking good. I love the change in the instrumentals from an 80s electropop sound in the original to a more modern funk rock one. The addition of the trumpets to add to the vibe were a very nice touch, as well as increased emphasis on the electric guitars to give it more of the signature Undead sound. It’s just…so damn catchy. One issue I had with the original was that it felt a little empty for a dance song given it was only one person singing, but this cover turns everything up to 11, both instrumentals and vocals along with a banger arrangement that gives everyone a chance in the spotlight as well as a trumpet and electric guitar solo, the impact is just so much bigger and it makes me want for more. Not everything has to be serious, sometimes its just fun to kick back, relax, switch off your brain and play U.S.A. a few times.
2) (RE)PLAY - Eden & Trickstar (original - Miura Daichi)
When I heard that they were going to cover this song, I had mixed feelings. The original is very performance heavy in nature and the instrumentals and lyrics are pretty minimal so that more focus could be given to the dancing, especially in the chorus. But when the cover came out, I fell in love with it. They’ve foregone the dance-pop synths of the original, instead going for a more jazzy tone with the introduction of the flute and piano, even giving a whole portion for instruments to freestyle where there was a dance break in the original. I especially love the counter melody by the flute, it gives the song a lot more character and personality that makes listening to it incredibly fun. And of course, the vocals. Honestly, they all did such great jobs it's hard to compare them with one another. The way they play off each other as the spotlight seamlessly transitions from one person to another, while keeping in tone with the overall vibe of the song with amazing breath control and of course Uchida Yuuma (Jun’s VA) slaying us all with his falsetto (let me praise my oshi a little here)...they made a cover so fun and addictive to listen to I could (RE)PLAY it endlessly (haha I’m hilarious).
Before I move on, I just want to add on something - please don’t sleep on Trickstar. I’ll admit HappyEle doesn’t really give them the best songs, but this cover is but a glimpse of how amazingly talented they are. They are all veteran voice actors who have been in the industry for decades and are all highly sought after - there’s a reason they are the ‘main character unit’. So please, do pay them some heed or give them a chance, you won’t be disappointed.
1) Yuukyou Seishunka - Valkyrie & AKATSUKI (original - ALI PROJECT)
A good cover places their own spin on a song while being faithful to the original. What separates a good cover from a great cover then? Well, it's when the artist makes the song their own and it becomes indistinguishable from the rest of their discography which is what happens here - it's almost as if the song was written for them specifically. Well, it might as well be, because this isn’t ALI PROJECT’s only run-in with Enstars - Miwaku Geki and Sacred Youth Games were both composed and arranged by them (they have released their own cover of the former as well, it’s worth a listen), so you could say that Valkyrie’s musical style was in fact directly influenced by ALI PROJECT themselves. The fusion between eastern and western instrumentals were so well done with nothing sounding out of place - I especially love the back and forth between the harpsichord and the fue (bamboo flute) during the verses, as well the alternation/pairing between them, such as alternating between the violin and shamisen even though both are string instruments in the choruses. The more I listened, the more things I discover about the instrumentals that I didn’t before. The sing-song vocals are filled with dramatic flair as they blend and flow into one another, becoming harsher and more grounded when the song demands so, going from soft to loud and soft yet again with just the right amount of vibrato, all the while the instrumentals drown and mesmerize us in an entrancing, almost maniacal performance. All the other covers on this list have done their best to fit into the units’ musical style, whether it be changing the instrumentals, toning down on the vocals, changing the overall vibe of the song etc. But sometimes, a song is just meant to be sung by certain people, like two puzzle pieces finally clicking together. This isn’t just a good cover. It’s a work of art.
That’s it for my rankings! Again, a huge thanks to anyone who reads through all of this and I hope I haven’t offended anyone (Knights/finePs I beg for your forgiveness). I may or may not do a third part on the fusion songs, probably when inspiration strikes me and I go into the mood to ramble on and on for a few hours, or probably closer to anniversary (I’m not sure). Anyways, thank you again for reading through everything, may the gacha be kind to us all, and go watch the 3DMV for Yoru ni Kakeru (at time of posting, there is about 5h left before it poofs off the internet)!
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2023.03.24 05:34 SoftAd6291 How can I (22F) be more decisive and confident in my life decisions?

I’m(F) about to turn 22 and I keep asking myself what am I doing with my life. It’s almost like my brain doesn’t work and I wish I could snap out of it so I didn’t feel like such a failure.
I don’t talk to my family, I’m in a relationship with a man twice my age who cheats on me, I constantly change my mind about what I want, I go from being happy to being extremely depressed. It all feels overwhelming and confusing. I keep making decisions and regretting them right after. I signed up to finish my college degree, immediately backed out. I got a dream job as an Art Director without much experience, quit 2 weeks later. Got a tattoo I wanted for years, and now I want it removed. Mom asked me to move back in with her, I agreed and now I don’t want to.
I keep changing my mind and daydreaming about making more changes like getting married, having a kid, starting a completely new career, or moving out of the country. But now I question if those are things I want or if I’m just looking for an escape.
I’m terrified of turning 22 and I’m worried about waisting my youth and not being successful. I know that’s somewhat normal as a person in my early 20s, but if it too much?
submitted by SoftAd6291 to Advice [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 05:33 Miss99problems Is tall poppy syndrome (when it comes to salary / finances) prevalent among your friends / family?

TLDR: I (25F) am about to start a new job that pays roughly $180k (approx. 100K more than what I earned 1.5 years ago) and I’m wondering if I should keep this news to myself?
Firstly, apologies if this is quite long as it is my first time posting on reddit and this is obviously a throwaway account. I (25F) am about to start a new job that pays a bit over $180k, I understand that this is a lot of money for a young person and I’m petrified of telling my friends / family members because I don’t know how they will react.
To provide some context around my situation, I come from a low-income household (only one parent worked, constantly struggling to keep afloat, parents took out multiple credit cards to pay for food and utilities etc.) and growing up, I could see that money (or lack thereof) was always at the forefront of my parent’s minds. I always had to help out financially and I knew that in order to escape that cycle, I had to work hard and earn a solid salary myself, so I didn’t have to rely on anyone else to provide for me. Despite some initial resistance and judgement from my family and friends, I decided to pursue a ‘unique/unconventional’ degree that I was passionate about, i.e. not business, law, medicine, commerce, engineering etc. and I guess that has paid off immensely as I found it easy to pursue roles that I’m passionate about and hence, my current dilemma.
My closest group of friends are very diverse, they come from all sorts of financial backgrounds (from housing commission to trust fund kids) and cultures. This means that they all view the concept of money differently, some save every penny while others blow through everything. However, recently I have noticed that my family and friends are starting to exhibit signs of tall poppy syndrome i.e. now that they all have full-time jobs, they are constantly trying to judge, criticise or one-up each other. However, this is only targeted at those who are in much better positions than themselves. It started off as small digs but it’s gotten to the point that I never share any of my achievements (career or otherwise) and I find myself downplaying my own financial situation in order to better empathise with them.
Now the reason I am contemplating telling my family and friends is because I want to help them through some tough situations, lots of them have a warped understanding of the economy / money, and are financially illiterate, hence why their personal finances are dire. I know that if I start giving them advice as someone ‘in the same situation as them’, they won’t listen to me and they will think I’m just full of hot air. But if they know that I’ve advanced so far in my career at such a young age and earn X amount, I know they will listen to my advice (and before anyone comes at me, I’ve already tried suggesting that they see financial advisors, documenting their income vs expenses, pulling back on discretionary spending, educating themselves etc. but to no avail). I have so many questions – has anyone been in a similar situation before, how would you handle this situation, should I not bother at all…?
submitted by Miss99problems to Advice [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 05:31 blueboy26 Just wanted to write something

Hey all, this has been my recent home for the past few weeks since I was broken up with about a week ago from my 4 year relationship.
Hearing stories of hope, hate, love.... stories of moving on and mourning has really helped me process what's going on.
During the start of our break up, she blocked me on all of her social medias, phone number as well as having her family block my number too. She is having some personal issues, when they first arose i didn't really help physically, emotionally or financially. I was a dick.
Realising this i tried to win her back. Texts, calls, letters, trying to arrange visits.
I did this daily, sometimes even calling her *67 just so i could hear her voice. I resorted to messaging on whatever access i still had... Whatsapp, Soundcloud and email... pathetic hey.
Ranging from the "Im Sorry", "Please" to "How are things going? I've been etc etc" with no reply.
Until she threatened to put a restraining order for contacting her so much 2 days ago.
So it really just hit me, i am a fucking douchebag.. if i really loved her i would give her space
Ive been 2 days into no contact since, i dont think it'll ever get easier but im ready to move on... i have since gained financial stability, created a routine to get healthier. I know it takes time, im working on it.
I've stopped drinking, sadly I have picked up smoking again though, didnt think i would but here i am rolling cigarette after cigarette.
I feel like im just ranting at this point, it feels nice to. I dont have many friends, if any that i can talk to these things about maturely.. i guess i just like speaking into an empty void, thats what i did by messaging her.. knowing she would read these things and not message back... casuing her to spiral worse and delay her healing.
My question is...
Why do i feel better after she threatened to put a restraining order on me? Is this narcissistic ?
Why do i feel like there could still be a chance? Knowing this, am i healing? Where am i at?

Dont worry, i wont be contacting her again. But i really hope she reaches out one day
thanks for listening guys
submitted by blueboy26 to ExNoContact [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 05:27 Rainbow6SiegeCreator What If Legends and Canon Merged? Part 6: A United Front

Months after the founding of the Rebellion, Leia had a chance to lead the liberation of Lothal. She then came up with a plan to bring down the Imperial presence in one fell swoop.
Leia: Thanks to Ezra and the Ghost Crew, we have the perfect strategy to remove the Empire. When my ship lands, Kanan will disguise himself as a stormtrooper tasked with guarding me and…
While the plan was being discussed, Ahsoka received a transmission from one of her most trusted agents.
Ahsoka: What is it, Kallus?
Kallus: Thrawn is cracking down on sabotage. The new commander has a brutal way to keep citizens in line and has tanks roaming the wide streets. If I'm found out, he'll execute me.
Ahsoka: Thank you for the information. If you see a trooper and a scout or cadet, they are our agents. Intercept them if they finish their recon.
Kallus: Even though they won't trust me.
Ahsoka: Yes. Make sure that the Empire is held back while we complete our mission.
Kallus: I'll do my best, Fulcrum.
When Kanan arrived with Princess Leia, The Empire had escorted them both to the main base with Ezra posing as a scout trooper needing to test out some patrol bikes. When Ezra was watching the workers, he saw them get lined up by Thrawn and forced one of them to "inspect" their work. As the factory worker was pushing the bike to its limits, the bike exploded and the worker that was thrown off died on impact. Thrawn expected every detail of these bikes to be checked and double checked before sending them to the field. Kanan was then told by Leia to make sure the troops prepared a secure location in the city for her to reside. Kanan then continued to patrol around looking for more men to adhere to their guest's demands. Ezra then moved to the training ground before contacting Kanan about receiving the codes to remove the ship clamps.
Ezra: Spectre-1, I'm at the speeder garage making my way to your location. We need the Princess to make a distraction.
Kanan: I'll contact her and let her know that a rebel force is heading her way.
Kanan then switched channels to create a diversion that Leia will put the Empire on high alert for a supposed rebel attack.
Kanan: Princess, we have a situation. Rebels are coming in through the outskirts and sneaking through the slums. We need to move you to a secondary location.
Leia: Copy that, Spectre-1.
She then feigned fear when she ran to the nearest Imperial officer and told him about the Rebel attack.
Officer: Lock this location down after we evacuate and relocate to the secondary residence!
Stormtrooper 1: Yes sir! This way, Princess.
As Ezra blended in with the biker patrol group, he then made his way to the facility where Kallus oversaw the troop deployments. Kanan made his way with a squad of "stormtroopers" and reported the attack to the nearest officer when Agent Kallus stumbled upon the "frightened" trooper commander.
Kallus: What's the situation here?
Kanan: As I was telling the officer, a rebel attack is happening and they are sneaking through the slums.
Just as Kanan finishes his report, Ezra comes speeding towards the vehicle depot with Zeb in the Phantom chasing him down and seemingly shooting at him. When he got past the AT-DPs, the Phantom pulled out and Ezra ran to Kallus trying to report his view on the attack.
Ezra: Sir! Sir! The Rebels! They… they have air support and wiped out my entire squadron. I managed to escape and need-
Kallus: Calm down, Trooper. Both of you come with me. The rest of you, hold this depot.
Rex, Mech, Massiff Squadron: Yes, Sir!!!
When Kallus, Ezra, and Kanan were alone in a turbolift, Kallus revealed that he was Ahsoka's Fulcrum agent on the planet and was updated on everything they needed.
Back with the Ghost crew, an old friend of Ezra's parents, a former mayor of his hometown, snuck the rebels in through the sewer. Hera, Sabine, Ahsoka, and Zeb, as well as Chopper were brought to the surface and they saw a huge plethora of Imperial vehicles patrolling the wide streets from AT-DP walkers, TX-225 armored tanks, AT-AT walkers, and TX-130 fighter tanks.
When X1 oversaw the patrols, He began sensing that some of the troopers weren't who they said they were. He then found a group of Stormtroopers guarding the depot when it was predominantly abandoned due to all hands being needed to protect the rest of the base.
X1: What is your purpose here, trooper?
Mech: We're under orders to protect the depot in case the rebels try to destroy any means of patrolling the city or intercepting them.
X1: This depot isn't a target for these rebels. Who gave you these orders?
Rex: That would be Agent Kallus, Sir.
X1: Let me through. I have important information that Kallus needs to know so he can capture these rebels alive.
Howzer: Kallus ordered us that no one, not even other Imperials, enter the main offices due to the rebels possibly using disguises.
Back with the Ghost crew, Kanan and Ezra took the working Speeder and got it to the Ghost and went back to get the clones at the vehicle depot. X1 activated his lightsaber and threatened to cut down the next trooper that defied him. As X1 entered the turbolift, he saw a barely conscious Kallus on the ground with broken transparisteel panels.
X1: Agent? Agent! What happened here?
Kallus: The rebels broke in and I was thrown through these panels and-
X1: Listen, if the rebels have access to any information on any drives they may have taken, you will be replaced indefinitely.
Kallus: I can spy on their communications through one of the radios I confiscated and keep in a safe location.
X1: Outside of Imperial jurisdiction? What are you planning exactly, Kallus?
Kallus: If I can get to the comm channel through said device, I can affirm whether or not they have any stolen information.
X1: Alright. I'll put together an escort-
Kallus: No! I need to do this alone.
X1: Given your rank, you need one.
Kallus: Since we didn't expect their attack, they won't expect an Imperial Agent spying on them from outside the city.
X1: Fine. Get there and report your findings.
Kallus: Yes, commander.
X1 then hailed Grand Admiral Thrawn who was near the governor's building aware of the attack.
X1: Grand Admiral, I have troubling news.
Thrawn: I am aware of the rebel attack, Commander. Is it about Kallus?
X1: Yes, Sir. I have reason to believe that he is the mole for these rebels, and that a Jedi is part of the rebel assault.
Thrawn: Thank you for confirming our suspicions, Commander. I will handle Kallus myself. You take on the Jedi, and let the rest of the troops round up the rest of them.
When the rebels made it to the surface, Hera radioed to Chopper to fly the Ghost to pick up Kanan, Ezra, and the clones. What stopped the duo of Jedi was a cold presence exiting the offices with a lightsaber drawn.
Ezra: Is he-
Kanan: With as cold as we are feeling, I don't think so.
X1: Killing the Grand Inquisitor, bold move. Putting a target on your back, however; very, very stupid of you.
Kanan: If you think we should fear you, you've got another thing coming.
Ezra: Do you even know how to use a lightsaber? Looks to me like you're only playing Jedi.
X1: Allow me to show you, boy.
As the pair went against the JT clone, X1 delivered a flurry against both opponents using Form 1 with ferocious swing to Ezra's blade opening the boy up to a knee in the stomach and a clash with Kanan. This ended with X1 pushing his saber aside and headbutting Kanan to disorient him. X1 then tried to deliver a killing blow to Ezra but Kanan blocked it. Ezra tried getting up, but X1 used a massive Force push into the ground making the three of them bounce. Ezra was winded but quickly recovered and began an offensive flurry of his own with Kanan attempting to attack his sides. After X1 opened Ezra up he landed a kick to his gut which sent him flying until he was gripped with the Force and thrown behind X1. As X1 was about to cut Ezra in two, Kanan slashed at X1's right leg and brought him to a kneel, but X1 used his signature tactic of feigning defeat until Kanan got close enough to strike, then X1 turned on his downed leg and slashed Kanan's eyes, blinding him almost permanently. Ezra got up and used whatever saber attacks he could to break the Imperial officer. X1 dodged every single swing and dismantled the boy at every turn with a kick to the gut, a punch to the left shoulder, and a backhanded fist across the same cheek. Ezra then in his exhaustion landed a couple blows against X1's chest before getting thrown out of the Vehicle depot, Imperial disguise in shatters.
After the Ghost landed, Zeb hurried and grabbed Ezra, but Ezra was trying to lift Kanan and bring him in, but Hera took off on Kanan's orders to leave him. X1 had Kanan restrained and brought to the prison complex in the city. Ezra and the Ghost then had to make it to the landing pad where Leia’s ship was and release the clamps, When the clones got off, they pretended that they were holding off rebels when a TX-225 rolled to their position. An Imperial gunship had escorted Princess Leia to the ship and Leia had the information she needed sent by chopper into another code cylinder that she swiped from the officer she groveled to for help. Back where Kallus found the comm he had in Ezra's home, he began coordinating the rebels escape from the city and let them know about a starfighter program and contingencies for if Lothal wasn’t kept in line. Just as Kallus was about to explain the final contingency plan, Thrawn had shown up in an Imperial troop transport and went up to the single room building alone.
Thrawn: The Commander and I were right to be suspicious of you.
Kallus: You were killing workers needlessly! This is perpetuating the rebel attacks, not stopping them!
Thrawn: Perhaps you've forgotten that the Empire rules through fear, and which side you align with.
As the two engaged in hand-to-hand combat, Thrawn got the upper hand by landing a decisive blow to Kallus's right temple and landing a kick to Kallus's gut causing the traitorous agent to fall, only to be caught by X1 with a captured Kanan Jarrus in tow.
Back with the Alliance, they reported that they got the Intel, and that Kanan got captured. This prompted another strike on Lothal, but the target based on the intel given by Kallus meant that they were going to infiltrate the TIE Defender program.
Meanwhile, Thrawn had begun further reinforcing the Empire’s presence in the area. X1 then started getting a strange feeling that something was off in the Force.
Thrawn: Something the matter, Commander?
X1: Yes, Sir. Just got a migraine. A very troublesome migraine at that.
Thrawn: Don’t play it off as something minor, Commander. I know you have the abilities of Lord Vader. What was it you saw?
X1: THere’s a temple and other artifacts a few miles from there. A… a mural of sorts is inscribed there… AAAAAHH!
Thrawn: Lieutenant, get the Commander to the Medical Bay and contact Lord Vader. WE’ve found something that the Emperor may find Interesting.
Officer: Yes, Grand Admiral.
Back with Lord Vader, he was on Kamino tending to his secret project; cloning Starkiller. For months he had been attempting to find the perfect clone, but when it came to the final test, all of them had failed. He periodically checked on his clones to see how long they would survive isolation.
During one mission to Cato Neomoidia, which hadn't seen activity in decades, General Rahm Kota, Chirrut Îmwe, and a squad of rebels were sent to bring down the Imperial moffs, and gain Neomoidian support for the war effort. Bail Organa knew that he had a few operations going simultaneously and knew he only needed to call of Kenobi or Yoda in case of emergencies. Juno Eclipse was in command after Kota left for the mission, and she hoped that the mission was to be short.
Back on Atollon, Wolffe had pulled Mech aside and gave him a new long term assignment.
Wolffe: Mech! Can I see you for a moment?
Mech: Yes Sir! What do you need?
Wolffe: We have an AT-TE from the last War that would be beneficial to the defense of the rebel base on Yavin. Since you have the most training on piloting Walkers, we need you there to help train the rebels in case they overtake one of the Imperial's.
Mech: Yes, Sir! Right away, Sir! Men, I need a hand getting this AT-TE loaded…
As Wolffe ordered pilots to make a trip to Yavin 4, Many assets were being allocated to rescuing Kanan and liberating Lothal from Imperial rule. As Ezra regaled about who he and Kanan fought, a certain squad became interested in the mission.
Ezra: He was dressed like an Imperial Officer, but he wielded a blue lightsaber. He wasn’t a Jedi, or an Inquisitor. He was something else.
X2: Commander Bridger, did he look anything like me?
Ezra: Now that I examined your face, yeah, he did.
X2: You just met my twin brother, X1. HE and I served together in the Clone Wars from the Invasion of Tatooine to the Battle of Cato Neimoidia. What happened after Cato Neimoidia, I wholeheartedly regret until defecting before the Empire attacked Dantooine.
X2 looked shaken, pale, and began to sweat over all the Jedi he killed, and rewound all the way back to Ferroda. Ezra and the rest of the Alliance were shocked about X2’s actions in the Empire, but Rex, Howzer, 78s, Ramm, and Vice remembered that day, the Jedi they fought alongside, and the brother they lost, Solar.
On Kamino, Vader had began a holocommunication to Crosshair about his next mission.
Crosshair: Yes, Lord Vader?
Vader: Report your progress for your mission on Ferrix.
Crosshair: A fugitive who is known by a recently deceased woman has escaped the system, but the ISB have a couple of tails on him throughout the galaxy.
Vader: Where are these tails following him to?
Crosshair: From what I overheard, he was headed to Jedha to meet with a rebel cell there.
Vader: Good. there is an Imperial Garrison that will hunt him down and hand them over to the ISB. Report to Kamino for your next mission.
Crosshair: Yes, my lord.
When Crosshair landed near Vader’s TIE Advanced X1 fighter, he exited and walked to meet the taller figure and kneeled in subservience and respect.
Vader: Rise. Your new orders are to go to dantooine, and place a beacon near where the rebels hold their prisoners. You may recognize the location. If any important Imperials are imprisoned there, activate the beacon, and a rescue team will be there to extract them, compile the list as the beacon is active.
Crosshair: What of the rebel presence there? If they are taken out, many would surely notice. If I use my signature reflecting pucks, some are going to recognize my work and hunt me down.
Vader: The clones will not be stationed on Dantooine. It has been a long time since they even saw you. You have the element of surprise on your side. Bury the beacon deep so that nothing can detect it.
Crosshair: I will leave at once, my lord.
Vader then saw the second of his most trusted agents leave for a mission as he returned to finding the right clone.
With the Alliance, Ezra then began to take a command role due to his knowledge of the planet and wanting to rescue Kanan. Ahsoka was the only other Jedi to lead an attack. He then explained his plan with a mix of real tactics he picked up from the last excursion and throughout his time with the Ghost Crew.
Ezra: Here's the plan: Now that we know that The Empire has tanks and walkers patrolling the larger areas, we're gonna need all the heavy firepower on the ground to take them out or use them against the other tanks and walkers. I'll lead a squad to rescue Kanan in the prison complex, Ahsoka, you lead the primary attack near the Governor's building. Thrawn should be there.
Hera: I know you want to save Kanan and drive Thrawn away, but there are times where we have to make a choice.
Ezra: We've pulled simultaneous attacks ever since we joined the Alliance. This is pretty much SOP at this point.
Sabine: We also have to take down the TIE Defender project. If we let them go, they will decimate our assault on the ground and any air support we try to bring in.
X2: If you need a good squad of pilots and soldiers, we can go with you, Sabine and pilot some of the Defenders. This could even teach us how they work.
Sabine: Alright, that part's covered.
Ahsoka: What about the rescue effort?
Wolffe: I'll help on the ground. I have to find some excuse to show these troops that I still got it.
Ezra: Alright, Wolffe, you, Rex, and Gregor will help lead the rescue on the ground. I'll sneak in using our old friend, and Hera, you join Sabine for the TIE Defender raid. Ahsoka, you go with the clones.
Hera: Where will you be?
Zeb: Alright, Someone's gonna have to look after this kid. I'll go with you and get you to the prison on the far side.
Ezra: Sounds fine to me. Everyone knows their places?
Sabine, Ahsoka, Rex, X2, and Hera affirm their parts of the plan and begin loading up into the Ghost, Republic shuttle, and X-wings.
Meanwhile with the Empire on Lothal, X1 is in the middle of torturing Kanan with 2 sapphire blades when a trooper gave him orders from the Emperor himself.
Stormtrooper: Sir, The Emperor wishes to make contact with you.
X1: Have someone take over his torture with a strong mind while I'm with the Emperor.
Stormtrooper: Yes, Sir.
When X1 made it to his war room, he activated the holocommunicator display and bowed to the projection of Palpatine.
X1: My Emperor, it's an honor to receive communications from you.
Emperor: Rise, Commander. I have been told that you found something that warranted my attention.
X1: Yes, my Emperor. There is a temple here, miles from the city with two symbols at the entrance to it.
Emperor: Has this been recorded in Imperial documents?
X1: No, my Emperor.
Emperor: Then how do you know?
X1: The method I had attained this knowledge from is, I had a piercing headache and suddenly, I saw it.
Emperor: You saw the temple without going near it?
X1: In short, yes, my Emperor.
Emperor: [Thinking] This could only mean… [Exit thought] How long has Vader been training you?
X1: Almost a year, my Emperor.
Emperor: Your newfound abilities have revealed a Jedi secret. I still have use for you, Commander. Lord Vader will continue to train you, and you will capture the jedi and force them to open it. During all of these events, you will only be an assassin, not his apprentice.
When X1 brought Kanan to the hidden temple, Vader's castle aide, Venee, arrived as a scholar of the Force, who also allocated Imperial resources to another location on Lothal which was more powerful than the temple, unbeknownst to the commander.
X1: Who might you be?
Venee: I've seen you tour and train at the castle from time to time. You were just too focused on training to notice me. No need to worry, Commander. Your secret with Lord Vader is safe with me and his castle walls.
X1: Thank you.
When the rebels launched their multi-pronged attack on the Empire, Ahsoka and the clones patrolled the city quarter for any heavy Imperial reinforcements, Sabine and X2 led grey Squadron to covertly recon and destroy the TIE Defender program, Ezra and Zeb went to scout out the prison before Ahsoka and the clones rendevouzed with them after eliminating the Imperial presence in the city and slums. FIxer, Boss, Wolffe, and Gregor joined Rex on the ground and each clone had an old PLX rocket launcher to take down the walkers and tanks. Ezra and Zeb made short work of the small Imperial patrols around the prison, but X1 had a plan of his own.
X1: What can you tell me about this temple that was in my visions?
Venee: The Temple has two sets of symbols each in their own circles, but it requires both a master and apprentice to open.
X1: I beat back a younger boy who was fighting alongside the Jedi I captured weeks ago. No doubt he’ll try to rescue his master.
Venee: Then you have your apprentice to open the temple. I will be at the mural if you need further guidance.
X1 then returned to his post in the prison, and received an communication from Admiral Thrawn.
Thrawn: Commander, We have tracked the rebels’ flight activity and tracked them to the Atollon system. We are going to send an Imperial garrison there if the Rebels escape. What is your status?
X1: Grand Admiral, We found the artifacts that the Emperor is looking for. Vader’s aide is at one of them and I am going to transport the Jedi prisoners to the temple.
Thrawn: You expect to take another Jedi captive, Commander? It must be a powerful artifact in the temple.
X1: Yes, Grand Admiral. The temple requires both a master and an apprentice to open it. These jedi will be the keys.
Thrawn: Quite a find and quite a puzzle to solve. The Jedi are a lot more protective of their secrets than we thought.
When Ezra and Zeb made it into the prison, he gave Chopper orders to fly overhead and do a recon flight for any incoming Imperial air support. When Ezra found Kanan in his cell, Zeb got a hold of him and attempted to escape, but X1 threw the Lasat against the wall with Kanan knocked out and Ezra to fight the brutal Imperial commander. After Ahsoka left the main square and the surrounding areas with vehicles behind repair, Ahsoka activated her blades and joined Ezra in his duel wil the Imperial commander. X1 had a chill run up his spine as he activated his sapphire blade and blocked strikes from both Jedi but after a large force repulse, Ahsoka and Ezra were thrown back and the clones and Stormtroopers fought over Kanan. Ezra ordered Zeb to retreat and fight back to the Ghost, and when Zeb exited the prison, Chopper used the Phantom to pick him up and get Zeb to the pilot seat of the Ghost.
Meanwhile with Sabine, Hera, and Grey Squadron, X2 took two of his men and sent the rest in the air awaiting a signal for support. Sabine disguised herself as an Imperial Ace and learned how to fly the hexa-winged craft. Hera did the best she could, slicing into a stowed fighter, giving the Empire a diversion. One of the other pilots in the program was a young Wedge Antilles who had doubts about the Empire, but knew he had to stay below the Empire's radar. X2 and his squadmates had to disguise themselves as stormtroopers, despite the discomfort of the armor plating.
X2: Greys 5, 2, and 4, commence flyover.
Greys: On our way, Commander.
Hera: I sliced into a stowed Defender, Spectre-5, are you in the air?
Sabine had to switch channels temporarily since she was also communicating with the controllers on the ground.
Controller: Cadet, Cadet! What's wrong?
Sabine: Nothing, Ground Control. I'm alright. Had to find the right channel, and accidentally hit something on my helmet.
Controller: We just saw rebel fighters fly overhead! Take them down!
Sabine: Yes, Sir!
Back with Hera, the Twi’lek finally got a stowed ship in the air and she ordered X2 and the squad on the ground to fire on her as she was taking off to give Sabine two "problems" to worry about.
Officer: What happened, trooper?!
Grey 3: A rebel stole one of the fighters! We tried to stop them but they took off!
Grey 6: We have to warn the test flight.
Officer: Alright, you three. Come with me!
X2: Yes, sir!
As the officer and 3 "stormtroopers" made it to the testing ground, Sabine had to shoot down 3 X-wings and another TIE Defender to sell the deception. Hera then ordered everyone in the air to stall their engines for a brief moment and begin the assault.
Officer: She got them!
Ground Control: Go investigate the crash sites and kill any survivors!
Grey 6: Yes, Sir!
Just as the order was given, Sabine and Hera destroyed the stowed fighters in the hangar and the X-wings destroyed the landing platforms. As the fighters made their getaway, the "stormtroopers" feigned being killed and when the Officer's made their way away from the destroyed test field, X2 and the others made their escape.
Before the test flight team evacuated the area, the ground control hit a control that deactivated the engines and made the fighters crash land inbthe hills below. Among the pursuing Imperial forces was the pilot Wedge who had a decision to make. Something that he remembered Sabine saying before her flight stuck with him and what he had been thinking to himself ever since he got to the Academy. He then stole the officer's pistol and killed the other Imperials. After Hera got the tactical computer off of her ship, the Imperial transport that Wedge rode in was being used by the rebels and defector to head over to the prison.
Back with Venee at the Mural, he began organizing patrols around it in case the temple was opened and other forces were about to converge. X1 had captured both Ezra and Kanan, and Ahsoka and the Clones evacuated the Ghost. Hera tried to get a hold of Ezra, but had no response.
Hera: Spectre-6? Spectre-6, do you copy?! Blast it! Wedge, regroup with the rest of our group. Chopper, Bring the Phantom in case we need an extraction!
Chopper boarded the phantom and sped his way to his mistress's location and what awaited her were two death troopers and the familiar Chiss who had taken over her family home.
Hera: Not this slimo again.
Thrawn: Syndulla. Pleasure to see you again. A surprise to be sure, but a welcome one.
Hera remembered the psychological torture she endured at his hands on her home planet and knew she had to prove she was not the scared child she was.
Back at the Temple, X1 threw both Kanan and Ezra to the temple entrance and ordered them to open it.
X1: Don't even think of standing up before that temple is opened. The first to refuse, the other loses their head!
Kanan and Ezra remained calm and did their best to open the temple, but Ezra's anger kept making the temple close again. X1 had both of their lightsabers in his hands and was about to slice them both until Ahsoka blasted X1 with a Force push. As the two clashed, Kanan and Ezra made their escape, but X1 pursued them in Imperial transport gunships and Kanan was knocked off due to a blast on the rear passenger wing into the power station. Kanan made sure to grab the sabers before escaping and hid amongst the generators.
X1: How noble of your friends to save you both, but you and I both know that the galaxy is better off without the Jedi. No wonder you had to hide who you were for so many years.
When Kanan hid behind one stack of generators, X1 had his blade to light the way until Kanan heard a voice or two that was familiar. The other two jedi that had been blinded by the dark side communed with Kanan from Cato Neimoidia Jedha guiding his actions as the two blind masters meditated. The duel was going smoothly for Kanan until X1 began planting explosives around the generators in an effort to kill the Jedi. As Kanan landed a kick to X1's chest, making him lose balance as the two dueled on top of the power generators. X1 had used his lightsaber to assist in climbing back up, but Kanan held back the explosions and X1 used the Force to jump away from the station and evacuate the erupting power station.
When Ezra, Wedge, and Sabine broke Hera free, Ezra and Hera boarded the stolen gunship and made their way to Kanan. As the blind Jedi teacher stood on top of the generator, holding back the flames and energy, the voices told him to surrender to the Force and much to the dismay of the Ghost crew, just as Kanan's eyes were allowed to see his friends, and his love for the last time, he refocused all the energy that he had keeping both the flames and his friends at bay, he moved his friends and love to safety as he let the flames and energy engulf him as his essence became one with the Force.
Ezra: No! I had so many questions! Who will continue my training now?!
Sabine: He was the best of all of us! Why did the Empire have to take him?
Hera couldn't make out any words other than a sob because the last time she was close with Kanan, she allowed herself to be physically vulnerable, and it was the only time she would get to feel that way with him.
Back with the Empire, X1 reported that the Jedi died in the blast. Venee was about to protest that it was a bad move, but then remembered that only one was needed to interact with the mural.
X1: Admiral, The jedi is dead. We can't open the temple anymore.
Thrawn: How unfortunate. We might as well destroy it then.
Venee: Admiral, Commander, may I interrupt?
Thrawn: Proceed, Aide.
Venee: The temple may be closed off, but the mural is not, but only requires one jedi to interact with it.
Thrawn: If we can manage to reclaim one Jedi, we can see what the mural can do.
X1: I will make sure that task becomes no problem.
Thrawn: Excellent, Commander. You will be in charge of Lothal in my absence. Governor Pryce will be en route to the municipal building in a few hours. Prepare for her arrival.
X1: Yes, Grand Admiral.
Back on Atollon, the clones, Jedi, and rebels began to mourn the loss of another Jedi. Ezra, Hera, and Sabine were the ones who were hit the hardest, while Zeb and Chopper set aside their differences for a good while. As the funeral proceeded, Thrawn was watching from probe droids he sent to survey the rebel cell and waited for the moment to strike.
Officer: Why do we wait to attack when we can strike now at their weakest?
Thrawn: An enemy in mourning is an enemy driven by passion, emotion, and clouded judgment. When the enemy has a clear head, they are easier to read and take down.
Officer: We should just attack while they are defenseless.
Thrawn: Then we would be no different than them. We must show that we are a civilized entity that respects the dead whether friend or foe.
Elsewhere in the galaxy, Vader returns to Kamino after another clone of Starkiller had survived the cloning process. When he landed his TIE Advanced X1 fighter, he made his way to the training chamber for the clone. Vader had a small glimmer of hope that this clone would prove efficient for his purposes of ending the rebels and assisting him in usurping the Emperor.
Vader: You still live.
StarkillerC: How long?
Vader: One month in isolation. Astonishing.
Starkiller: Everything I need, I have in the Force.
Vader: Rise.
The Starkiller clone then stood on his feet and Vader began instructing the clone on what he needed like he did all the others before him. As he watched the test that the clone had partaken in, the clone was about to strike down the image of Juno Eclipse, but he hesitated. Vader began to hang his head in shame until he heard another saber ignite through the image’s chest.
Vader saw the image fall as the clone’s eyes turned a sith yellow and his skin slowly begin to pale. This was the clone he needed, but Vader knew that in order to surprise the rebellion, he had to capitalize on a clone escaping and bringing the rebels to them on a silver platter.
StarkillerC: What is thy bidding, my master?
Vader: Remain in these facilities until the Rebels come here. If the clone brings the rebels here and attempts to execute me, you will do what it can not.
StarkillerC: Yes, master.
Meanwhile on Dantooine, Crosshair found the rebel prison and planted the beacon. All that needed to be done was return to Kamino and make sure that Vader's plan, or at least one of them, unbeknownst to the loyal Imperial clone, succeeded.
Back with the Ghost Crew, Ezra had continued to grieve and make his way to the one who had been teaching Kanan whenever they were on base. This being was the Bendu and the young Jedi knew that in order to put an end to Thrawn, his emotions needed to be put to the wayside. As he continued talking to The Bendu, he meditated to find Kanan in the Force.
Captain Eclipse was worried about Kota, but knew that she ordered him to stay and he refused.
Bail Organa had checked on his forces and saw that the clones became combat instructors for the rebel forces.
Back over Atollon, Juno had met Commander Wolffe and the two began discussing different operations.
Wolffe: Captain Eclipse.
Juno: You must be Commander Wolffe. It's a pleasure to meet you.
Wolffe: Likewise. I see you're planning a mission to Cato Neimoidia.
Juno: Yes, my general had gone against orders again and began attacking an Imperial target there, but was captured and the squad was killed.
Wolffe: I once knew of a pair of Jedi that went against orders.
Juno: Were you a veteran of the Clone Wars?
Wolffe: I was. From the battle of Abregado to the Invasion of Cato Neimoidia.
Juno: I remember reading about the Outer Rim Sieges at the Imperial Academy. What was your role in the battle?
Wolffe had given her the story of his involvement and his regretful actions due to the chip in his head.
After X1 ended the Jedi he made his way to his quarters where a holocall from Lord Vader was waiting.
Vader: Venee tells me that a Jedi is dead.
X1: Yes, my master, but at the cost of the city power station. This can be spun into a relief effort, I know it.
Vader: I am not worried about the Imperial logistics, Commander. Your new orders are to meet me on Kamino. Your skills need further tuning.
X1: Yes, my master. I will be there in two rotations.
When X1 arrived in Timira city, he was greeted by Vader and led to a secret training room where X1 began to feel something was off about the room. He then felt the presence of another Force user in the room and Vader stood aside and watched his clone take on his apprentice. When X1 began to use foresight, he blocked the incoming strike. After blocking 5 more, he was disarmed.
Vader: Your form is slow, rigid, and blunt. Meet Starkiller, or the closest thing. This is the boy I had trained unbeknownst to the Emperor.
X1 then realized what he had to do. Defeat this clone and Vader would award him his own Destroyer.
The clone had begun his barrage of attacks that made X1's look like a grown adult beating up a child. As the duel slowly began to favor X1, he saw the clone attempt Force lightning and X1 used his anger and attempted to do the same with surprising success. After X1 won the lightning clash, he began to take to Form VII and Form IV to beat down the clone. When X1 was about to stab the clone he suspended both of them with the Force.
Vader: Well done, Commander. Your destroyer has been ordered to arrive within hours. As for you, you must train harder against enemies with sabers and blasters alike.
As the three separated, a shuttle landed on the platform at the end of the walkway. X1 thanked Vader with a kneel and boarded the shuttle.
Back with the Rebels near Atollon, They see a couple light cruisers nearing the base. Thrawn then sees two Jedi defending the entrance but as the Stormtroopers fail to penetrate the Base's defenses, Kallus, who happened to be on the vessel, escapes his restraints and continues leaking plans to the rebels at their war room. When Ezra retreated, he was found by some death troopers and he took them down. The death troopers surrounded Ahsoka and began trying to stun her. She had remembered the training Anakin put her through, as well as her and Rex defending against the clones aboard the venator above Lubang Minor. In the near constant array of stun blasts, Thrawn threw an arc detonator and knocked out Ahsoka with the electric shock.
The Empire then dragged Ahsoka's body aboard the light cruiser and Thrawn began to try breaking down Ahsoka to make her open the mural for Vader's aide.
Kallus then added the details he's learned to the rebel cell and Ezra used these details to update his plan. As Ezra adjusted his plan to include rescuing Ahsoka from Thrawn’s grasp and moving different troops to each task. Ezra had put his emotions away due to the tragedies the alliance had experienced. As the final preparations were made to go back to Lothal, Ezra stopped by the Bendu for guidance and counsel in the Force. After a few guiding words from the entity who is neutral in the Force, Ezra had a resolve like no other.
Back with the Empire, Ahsoka was placed in front of the mural examining the three figures that she remembered interacting with on a distant planet called Mortis. As she examined the mural she then took a look at another owl-like creature flying to one perch on the rock face. She had been referring to the bird as Morrai, which for Ahsoka, who she thought was the embodiment of The Daughter. What the Force had concealed from the Togruta was that it was actually Ahsoka herself that was The Daughter. The memories of her time on Mortis came rushing back to her as she was being forced to open the mural.
When Ezra and the Rebels landed, Rex and Wolffe then took Grey Squadron along with Kallus to sneak past the Imperial patrols. Ezra ordered Sabine, Hera, Zeb, Chopper, and X2 to follow him through the slums and look for a ship to get to the rural landscapes where the mural had been located while disguising himself as a scout trooper with Sabine joining him in this endeavor. When the transport was secured, Hera took the controls, Zeb helped X2 with a supposed prisoner transfer, but they were infiltrating the municipal grid.
Before the assault began, Sabine had a few unresolved feelings she felt Ezra needed to be made aware of. As the two shared their first loving embrace, it calmed both the Jedi padawan, and the mandalorian outcast and helped them compose themselves. As Rex, Wolffe, Gregor, and X2 began conducting the guerilla warfare in the streets, Ezra and Sabine took disguises as Scout troopers stationed at the Mural, Hera provided transport for the clones, Zeb had been flying the Phantom for additional air support.
When Ezra and Sabine began to interact with the Mural, the pictures there began to move as Ahsoka began to mimic applying the Force to it as she saw two Imperial Scouts touch it. As the pictures on the mural turned black, X1 and Venee forced Ahsoka to touch the moving artwork only to see her hands go inside it like it was a body of water, discovering that it was a portal to a different location, possibly a different realm.
Venee: This… is a… portal?! The Emperor will be very pleased with this discovery.
Ezra: Where does it lead?
Venee: From what I have researched, it is to a realm where history is spectated as if it were windows to shops in an urban district.
When Sabine began to inquire about it, since she was the only non-force sensitive of the three, she embedded a code word for Ahsoka to hear and pull them into the portal and the rest of the team to come and assist them.
Sabine: If this is a portal where you could see other moments in time, would it be possible to change some of the events of the past?
Before Venee could answer the question, Ahsoka had pulled her sabers to her and she threw both Ezra and Sabine into the portal and followed suit as the Empire tried firing into the realm before they were ordered to focus on the threat behind them. Ezra began to meditate and before the rest of the combatants knew it, Loth-wolves had joined the fray, pouncing and ripping the stormtroopers to shreds.
As the three examined the realm they were now in, they had heard multiple voices, through multiple different portals, some familiar from events of the past, and others that were strange from events of the future. One of these portals had recently opened and revealed an ominous figure standing near a cauldron of blue flames.
Emperor: You three have interfered in matters you know nothing of. Now you will experience the full power of the Dark side!
The Emperor then began to use the flames to engulf the 3 in sith magic as he began an incantation in the ancient Sith dialect and the three ran in search for the portal they entered from.
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2023.03.24 05:27 stult Why has Ukraine continued to defend Bakhmut despite reports of heavy losses?

I posted this long multi-comment thread on the megathread last Sunday, and several people suggested that I make it its own post, so here goes. Note this post is lightly edited from the original comment to improve readability and preserve some arguments made by another commenter in that thread without me having to do the hard work of editing the whole post to reflect their well-taken counterpoints. For those who read the original, it hasn't changed in any significant way except that one link. This post is largely my own analysis supported by links to a variety of credible sources.
Dr. Sovietlove; or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Bakhmut
Many people on the daily megathread or on Twitter have been arguing that holding out in Bakhmut has caused enormous and unsustainable Ukrainian losses which will compromise their future offensive potential, and/or that Soviet-style leadership is the only reason the Ukrainians have held on to Bakhmut for so long. Much like during the Battle of Severodonetsk, I think a lot of people are overreacting to events in the Donbas and that the Ukrainians might have a perfectly reasonable strategic justification for continuing to defend Bakhmut. I have a few hypotheses about the situation and put together some analysis and sources to support those conclusions below.
My hypotheses in brief:
  1. Ukraine effectively has two armies, one post-Soviet and one NATO. UAF high commmand has recognized that they have to fight the Russians with an only partially modernized military which includes significant numbers of officers, soldiers, and equipment not suitable for NATO-style warfare. They recognize that you can't "beat a large Soviet army with a small one." They have therefore formulated a strategy to use the post-Soviet and NATO-style units where their particular strengths are most relevant, and are largely resourcing and employing them separately as a result.
  2. The UAF is aggressively applying economy of force principles, which dictate that an army should devote the maximum amount of resources to their primary effort, while allocating the smallest amount possible to any secondary efforts. Thus, the Ukrainians are committing the fewest possible resources to holding the line of contact in the Donbas while reserving as much as possible for their primary effort, which is the coming counteroffensive.
  3. Ukraine along with their allies and soft power proxies such as friendly journalists, whether knowingly or not, have been engaged in a disinformation campaign designed to lure Putin into committing the last of his mobilized reserves to an assault on Bakhmut in the last days of the mud season before the Ukrainian spring counteroffensive.
I'd like to emphasize that these are assessments backed by analysis and facts which you can check yourself below, but are definitely not by any means 100% certain.
Two Armies
The post-Soviet army can be characterized by its leadership, organization, and resources.
These units are generally not going to be as useful for offensives, but are certainly capable of holding a fortified defensive line, albeit likely at dreadfully high cost in some cases. Light infantry are surprisingly resilient to artillery fire when dug in properly, and so are an effective check against the (apparently declining) Russian artillery advantage. ATGMs and mines also make it possible for them to resist all but the most carefully coordinated combined arms assaults, which are a vanishingly rare occurence coming from the RuAF. And these units were relatively cheap to equip and quick to train. So they are well-suited for countering the three primary Russian numerical advantages in artillery, armor, and raw manpower, at least while fighting defensively in prepared positions.
On the other hand, their NATO-style forces are better suited for combined arms maneuver warfare and thus offensives. They emphasize distributed decision making, tactical flexibility, and robust communications between different units and levels of the command. That enables flexible coordination of multiple capabilities on the attack, such that defending against one capability makes defending against the others harder. e.g. suppressing entrenched infantry with artillery while mechanized units traverse open killing ground during an assault in order to bring their tank and IFV guns to bear on those infantry to suppress them after the artillery lets up. Ukraine is in the process of building out or deploying around 20-28 new brigades of this type. I feel a little bad sourcing to a comment from this megathread rather than a credible third-party source, but offogredux puts together truly excellent summaries of the current structure of Ukrainian forces, so why reinvent the wheel? Plus their information matches what I've seen elsewhere, including the less consolidated information available here on militaryland. Notably, some units are being built around smaller veteran battalion- or regiment-sized separate units that are upsized to brigades, while others are entirely new formations, but likely include substantial numbers of veteran leaders at all levels.
Ok, so where is this "NATO" army?
There are reports of extreme deficits of NATO-trained personnel at the front, which are typically presented as a sign of Ukrainian weakness (n.b., see below for more on why to treat any Ukrainian-sourced reports of Ukrainian weakness with a healthy dose of skepticism). Often sources attribute the deficit to high casualty rates among those personnel during the earlier stages of the war. Best estimates are that the Ukrainians have lost around 120k soldiers. They started the war with around 250k personnel, of whom perhaps 20k were US-trained veterans.
Since then, the UK, EU, and US have trained something like an additional 20k+ soldiers (possibly with some overlap with the other 20k, but likely insignificant numbers if so), with plans to expand training for tens of thousands of additional troops over the next year. So even if every single one of the pre-war NATO-trained personnel are casualties, the total number of NATO-trained personnel in the UAF has at worst remained constant, at best it has doubled, and in any case it will only continue to grow as the western training programs ramp up and the Ukrainians disseminate those skills by assigning NATO-trained personnel to their own training centers. (Note: when I first posted this, VigorousElk made an excellent counter-argument to this point here which is worth considering and I didn't want to cut out of the conversation by moving this to a text post. I don't think it undermines the overall thrust of the argument, though.)
However, the overall proportion of NATO-trained personnel in the UAF has almost certainly declined because mobilization has likely increased the total size of their forces by more than a factor of two, so the overall proprtion declined even if the total number of NATO-trained soldiers actually did double (which is very, very doubtful and the 40k number should be treated as an extremely loose upper bound). That proportion is probably even lower on the front lines if the UAF have allocated those soldiers to new unit formation and units held in reserve for the upcoming offensive. So even if the Ukrainians haven't experienced particularly high casualty rates among such soldiers, we should expect to see far fewer of them on the lines right now. Meaning we can't infer the execess casualty rate from the composition of front line units, as many commentators have, nor do we need a particularly high casualty rate to explain why there are so few of them at the front. Just the formation of so many new brigades must have sucked up all of the available experienced junior officers and NCOs, especially if the UAF are trying to concentrate NATO-trained personnel into specific units. Again that doesn't mean they haven't experienced high casualties, just that the issue probably isn't as bad as some of these articles have made out.
I suspect some of the authors of these articles have taken that position because of selection bias, e.g., Franz-Stefan Gad, who visited the front near Bakhmut with Michael Kofman recently. If you are only visiting the units that are intentionally being staffed with fewer NATO-trained personnel, you shouldn't be surprised to see fewer NATO-trained personnel. Their absence doesn't indicate permanent backsliding across the entire UAF, demonstrate the incompetence of the Ukrainians, nor prove that the Ukrainians have suffered anything near 100% casualties among their NATO-trained NCOs. Instead, it just reflects the relative prioritization of scarce resources by UAF command. In a recent War on the Rocks podcast episode, Kofman specifically pointed out that his visit (and by extension his companions' visits) did not involve any kind of general or systematic survey of the Ukrainian forces, and so any conclusions based on his observations should not be taken to be totally representative of what is happening across the entire UAF right now.
Cool. Where are the "Soviet" units then?
It helps to put yourself in Zaluzhny's shoes here. You have two big chunks of your armed forces that operate in very different ways and which are suitable for very different tasks. You are finding it difficult to encourage the newly mobilized senior officers to let go of their Soviet habits, but you also need them because there is no one else who is immediately prepared to lead newly mobilized formations. So you make the obvious, logical decision to use the Soviet-style mobilized commanders how and where you can best make use of them, while hopefully keeping their habits contained and isolated from your more professional units. The best place for those commanders in this war is probably on the defensive in the trenches, where rapid decision-making around complex maneuvers is less often necessary, light infantry can be effective at attriting enemy armored and maneuver forces, individual soldiers don't need as much training to be effective, combined arms operations are less frequent and more easily choreographed, the risk of catastrophic failure is less, and logistics are dramatically simpler than for an offensive force on the move with many vehicles requiring ammo, fuel, and maintenance.
The allocation of armored assets supports this conclusion. Per Oryx, Ukraine has received almost exactly the same number of Soviet-derived tanks from their western partners as they have lost so far in this war (488+ donated Soviet-variant tanks versus around 477 lost). Plus captured Russian equipment, they almost certainly have more armor available now than they did at the beginning of the war, not even taking into account the impending introduction of western tanks. Yet there are reports from the front lines that armor is relatively scarce and lightly used. It seems the UAF have combined multiple brigades into ad hoc corps or divisions along stretches of the line of contact (what Jomini calls a "defensive grouping") to fill in the gap left by the absence of real formations above brigade size in the Ukrainian ground forces TOE.
That grouping often consists of several lighter brigades holding the front line backed by a smaller number of more professionalized and/or heavily armored mech or armor brigades as the reserve. e.g., the UAF defensive grouping around Bakhmut in February, which consisted of two mech brigades backing two TDF brigades, one airmobile brigade, and one marine brigade, all equipped exclusively with Soviet-derived armor and IFVs, along with limited quantities of older western IMVs and APCs like the M113. So light infantry in the trenches, with armor in the rear to plug holes or provide indirect fire support. This approach allows the UAF to allocate the fewest number of regular mechanized and armored army units to the front, freeing up capacity for re-equiping and training for an offensive. It also puts the least amount of strain on their tank and IFV supplies, by making heaviest use of their soon-to-be legacy vehicles, which are also conveniently the ones more Soviet-minded commanders are most familiar with. Hence the relative dearth of armor at the front, even though we should expect more tanks and IFVs than were available at the beginning of the war. The reduced armor commitment comes at the expense of the light infantry in the trenches, who absorb Russian attacks without the benefit of enough tank or IFV support. Further evidence for the idea that lighter forces reliant more on IMVs/APCs form the bulk of forces around Bakhmut includes the UAF charging Russian lines riding M113s in the vicinty of Bakhmut literally yesterday. Which feels a bit like the modern equivalent to the apocryphal story about Polish cavalry charging tanks during WW2, but I guess they have to make do with the tools available.
Does the presence of Soviet-influenced commanders at the front indicate that the decision to hold Bakhmut was made by such officers blindly applying Soviet doctrine? I would argue probably not. Syrsky and Zaluzhny have long-established reputations as very much not that sort of officer, and both have reviewed and approved the decision to hold in Bakhmut. More importantly, and without relying on an appeal to their authority, there are sufficient strategic and operational justifications to continue the defense there, even if it is on less favorable terms than other defensive efforts across the front. Specifically, attriting Russian reserves to reduce their resistance to an offensive, much like what happened in Kharkiv last August.
If attriting Russian reserves is the goal, how can these conscript-heavy formations with Soviet-style leadership best do so?
Right now, Russia only has a single division held in reserve. That would be the 2nd Motorized Rifle Division, elements of which have likely been committed to combat already. This reserve exists to exploit any breakthroughs achieved by assaults on the Ukrainian defenses and to plug any holes in the Russian lines resulting from UAF attacks. If the reserve is depleted before the Ukrainian counter-offensive, the UAF will be able to achieve much more progress much more quickly. Once they breach the Russian lines, there is nothing to stop a penetration into operational depths. Even though the Russians have fortified extensive fallback positions on secondary lines throughout occupied Ukraine, they need reserves to hold those lines if the front lines are penetrated and the Russian units there are unable to withdraw to secondary positions in good order. Withdrawal under fire is a challenging task and one for which only the VDV has demonstrated any capacity on the Russian side. There is also no new wave of Russian mobilization yet to provide any further reserves any time in the near future. Thus, the more Russian reserves the UAF can burn through now, the better their chances on the offensive will be.
There's been a lot of talk about the loss ratio between the belligerents and how that ratio makes a retreat from Bakhmut likely necessary, but ultimately the loss ratio matters less than absolute numbers of Russian reserves attrited. Because the Russians are nearly out of reserves, a UAF attrition strategy may tip them into a full-on rout. If the Ukrainian leaders knew objectively they needed to inflict 1000 more casualties on the Russians to achieve victory, it would be worth losing many times as many Ukrainian soldiers to inflict those casualties. Achieving victory is often worth accepting unfavorable loss ratios, otherwise no one would ever go on the offensive. In any case, the friendly-to-enemy casualty ratios are still almost certainly in Ukraine's favor simply because they are defending, and there have been no serious reports at all that suggest any departure from that norm. So we aren't even talking about the Ukrainians suffering an unfavorable loss ratio at all, just a slightly less favorable one when compared to real ratios from different areas of the front or when compared to hypothesized loss ratios at proposed fallback defensive positions. Rob Lee and DefMon thus both make variations of the same error. They failed to compare the loss ratios around Bakhmut to the expected loss ratios for the offensive, because ultimately the Ukrainians face a choice between attriting the Russian reserves around Bakhmut now, or when they are on the offensive.
Why don't the Ukrainians retreat and get an even more favorable ratio in a better position?
First, because the Russian offensive will culminate in Bakhmut (or it already has) and the RuAF will likely enter an operational pause because of depleted offensive power. That pause will likely last longer than the Ukrainians plan to wait for their counterattack. Basically, only the possibility of victory in Bakhmut can induce the Russians to continue wasting their soldiers lives so recklessly before the spring. Second, because the current loss ratios are pretty well understood and relatively predictable, which is not necessarily true if they retreat. Retreating under fire is challenging even for elite units, and results are naturally unpredictable. Assessing the hypothetical defensibility of any fallback positions is also challenging, especially with sufficient accuracy to be able to meaningfully predict what kind of loss ratio improvements you might gain from repositioning. Third--and this reason is entirely hypothetical--it is possible that the Ukrainians have sufficient intelligence about Russian reserves to know exactly how long they need to hold out, and so perceive the hopefully quite proximate end to a battle that appears to us as outsiders as a limitless meatgrinder that will continue to waste Ukrainian lives indefinitely into the far future. Essentially, they know the price they are paying and what they are getting for it more precisely than we do.
In contrast, on the offensive, the UAF will likely experience a loss ratio that favors the Russians, even if the offensive is generally successful. The exchange in Bakhmut will be particularly favorable if they are able to trade less well-trained conscript formations for the few remaining high quality Russian formations such as Wagner's assault units and the remnants of the VDV. Notably the VDV played a critical role in holding the line in Kherson and delaying the UAF's offensive there until the successful Russian withdrawal across the Dnipro, and it seems reasonable that the Ukrainians don't want to see a repeat delay that may buy time for subsequent waves of Russian force generation. Bottom line, the Ukrainians need to fight these Russian reserves no matter what, and it will nearly always be more favorable to fight them on the defensive than offensive. The challenge with fighting them on the defensive is that the Russians need to agree to go on the offensive first, which means the Ukrainians need to fool the Russians into thinking an attack benefits their strategic objectives. Blessedly, the "we are lucky they are so fucking stupid" guy continues to be the reigning champ of summarizing this war in a single laconic sentence and the Russians have been willing to oblige the Ukrainians with attacks all throughout the mud season.
But by "fool the Russians", I really mean fool Putin. He is micromanaging the war, even dictating decisions at the level of colonels or brigadiers such as when to commit reserves, and that likely includes the much more momentous decision to commit the very last of their available combat reserves. He has repeatedly pushed the RuAF to make objectively poor military decisions for political purposes, and he does not receive reliable information, because he has reduced his circle of confidants to only a couple of advisors who largely tell him what he wants to hear and he does little to gather his own independent information.
Putin is also a classic bully in the distinctive style of the KGB, as Yale professor of history Timothy Snyder describes in an interview here. Their method is always to look for an opponent's weaknesses, and then to ruthlessly expand and exploit those weaknesses. Probably worth mentioning that Timothy Snyder has met with and advised Zelensky directly, so his views aren't just an academic theory, they reflect and influence the views of the actual Ukrainian decisionmakers. Those decisionmakers clearly understand that Putin's instinct is to attack weakness with maximum force, and therefore carefully shape perceptions of Ukrainian weakness to mislead Putin into attacking the wrong targets. I mean, it's pretty widely accepted that the Ukrainains signal weakness intentionally when trying to attract western support, so why should it be surprising that they apply the same techniques to deceiving Putin?
And that is also another reason why the Ukrainians can't just throw their best troops into the battle. If there were no weakness around Bakhmut, the Russians would simply stop attacking with those critically valuable remaining high quality VDV formations.
What weaknesses should the Ukrainians use to mislead Putin?
Putin is not an idiot, so the UAF can't simply invent weaknesses out of thin air. Instead, they have to find ways to exaggerate some real weaknesses while downplaying others. In this case, I think they are combining their very real Soviet-hangover leadership weakness with their related difficulties around conscription to lure the Russians into attacking Bakhmut under unfavorable conditions. Specifically, I am referring to the stories around conscription problems which imply manpower deficits across the board for the UAF and stories suggesting the defense of Bakhmut will compromise future UAF counteroffensives. Playing up those particular weaknesses presents an ideal picture to appeal to Putin's prejudices and his desperation for a politically palatable conclusion to the hostilities. If you blame Soviet-style leadership, it makes the Ukrainians look dumb and incompetent for not retreating, and suggests they remain saddled by the same legacy that has so limited Russian military capabilities during this war, which plays to Putin's belief in Russian superiority. It also suggests to Putin that not only can he achieve the minimally viable political victory he so desperately needs by taking Bakhmut, he can also compromise the Ukrainian ability to conduct future counteroffensives with the very same blow, opening the way for a negotiated settlement that freezes the current lines (plus/minus changes around Bakhmut). It's really the best remaining even theoretically conceivable outcome for Putin, and many of the recent stories and leaks from Ukrainian-aligned media seem perfectly crafted to suggest continuing to attack Bakhmut could very well achieve that outcome. Suspiciously perfect, I would argue.
There have been few reports of widespread difficulty around draft dodging in Ukraine until quite recently, well into the battle for Bakhmut, when suddenly a flood of stories appeared in the media about people avoiding conscription and Ukrainian officials aggressively conscripting people against their will, e.g. from the Economist and Newsweek. Which struck me as odd, considering that the Ukrainians have more than a million reservists and earlier in the war had far more volunteers than capacity to train them for at least the first six months of the war. Even as recently as December, Zaluzhny said that the UAF does not have manpower issues so much as a need for armor and munitions. So where are the volunteers, why are the units around Bakhmut being reinforced with untrained conscripts, and why all the news stories about aggressive conscription? My hypothesis is that the volunteers are funneled into the more NATO-style units, most of which are currently in reserve or training behind the lines, while the Soviet-influenced commanders are given conscripts (at least as a preference if not as a hard rule) and are burning through them faster than other units, mostly in the Donbas meat grinders around Avdiivka and Bakhmut. The prioritization of allocating volunteers to the more NATO-oriented units makes a lot of sense in that context. Mission command requires motivation and self-direction, which you are more likely to find in volunteers. Conscripts can perform at wildly varying levels, and generally can't be relied on as much to take initiative, and so are a better fit for the top-down Soviet command style. This preference or bias could also come about naturally because of self-sorting, as more Soviet-style commanders may be more willing to take on reluctant conscripts than more NATO-oriented leaders, and older officers steeped in Soviet doctrine will have more relevant experience for leading formations with older Soviet kit.
If that's how recruits are being allocated, it explains some of the resistance to conscription, because conscripts are disproportionately funneled straight into the meat grinder by default. For example, the story that has made the rounds of a soldier who received only five days of training before being deployed to Bakhmut. That soldier's experience doesn't mean the regular army volunteer units are having difficulty filling out their TOE or training their soldiers, just that some of the units most reliant on conscripts are. Notably his formation was the 101st Brigade for the Protection of the General Staff, which may be just about the most irregular unit in the entire UAF command structure, outside whatever chaos-demon worship seems to be happening over in the Ministry of Interior. The 101st is actually directly part of the General Staff, rather than assigned to an operational command, unlike every single other combat unit in the regular army.
So I don't know that his experience can be considered particularly representative, although it very well might be for conscripts with the bad luck of ending up in a Soviet-style unit that also happens to be committed to intense combat operations. But that's not all the units by a long shot. It's likely that for every soldier like that around Bakhmut, there are multiple comparable conscripts assigned to relatively quiet or less intense AOs where they are given the opportunity to learn some basic military skills on the job from the more senior members of their unit. So this would actually be a good way to increase their training pipeline, if somehow they could both predict where attacks would come with 100% certainty to avoid allocating untrained conscripts there and yet still somehow need to maintain high force density throughout the front, which seem like mutually contradictory propositions. It's a morally questionable but potentially effective technique for growing the training pipeline if they allocate excess untrained conscripts evenly across the front without regard to the risk that they will be thrown into combat unprepared, which this story seems to suggest may be their practice. It would also be an excellent way to make use of excess conscripts who were recruited primarily to mislead Russia about the level of manpower issues the UAF are experiencing, too.
This strategy of allocating resources across units suggests losses around Bakhmut won't compromise any offensive, because the offensive units are drawing on entirely different recruitment streams, training resources, and equipment types than the defensive units are. The conscript-heavy formations on the frontline at this very moment are serving to absorb Russian attacks and burn through Russian reserves while the more professional units prepare for an offensive that has the potential to be decisive. If it seems unfair to give worse equipment to the people doing the harder fighting right now, just remember economy of force. Bakhmut is secondary to the offensive. In the longer term, the recruitment challenges won't matter as much once the current Russian reserves are exhausted because the meat grinder will be over, and the UAF will no longer need to feed it. By the time Russia can generate any further forces for their own offensives, the Ukrainians will be over the hump in terms of adopting western tanks, IFVs, and combined arms doctrine and will have slack to retrain the units currently holding the lines to meet the same standards.
But what about the spring offensive?
The only contrary evidence to that assessment are reports, usually sourced from anonymous US or NATO defense officials, that western officials are telling the UAF that defending Bakhmut may compromise their ability to conduct a spring counteroffensive. Which really makes no sense at all to me, based on what formations and equipment types are allocated to Bakhmut. The reports are anonymous and lack any supporting detail beyond the basic claim. As I described above, the units around Bakhmut aren't the kinds of units the Ukrainians are likely to use on an offensive in the near future. I therefore tend to dismiss those anonymous reports as leaks intended to spread disinformation, and in particular to invite the Russians to feel confident in committing their reserves to an attack on Bakhmut.
The Russians (and more to the point Putin) may conclude that it's worth burning through their reserves if doing so compromises the Ukrainian ability to counterattack, and these leaks seem suspiciously well designed to invite that conclusion. If the leaked reports about compromising the offensive were true, they probably would not have been leaked at all, because they reveal an actual Ukrainian weakness in a manner which does nothing to protect that weakness. Contrast that scenario to leaks about the dire need for more long range artillery from about a year ago. Russia could absolutely figure out that the Ukrainians needed better long range fires on its own, so the leaks didn't risk revealing new information, yet did actively invite a solution in the form of western donations. Whereas the leak about Bakhmut (if true) just airs Ukrainian dirty laundry, with no real hope of changing the Ukrainian decision or bringing in additional western support. Meaning, it would be a disloyal leak, of which we have not seen many if any from the US/NATO side during this war (potentially not including the general jockeying between the allies for position around major weapons contributions like tanks). Basically the leak was like saying, "Oh no, Putin, whatever you do please don't attack Bakhmut, anywhere but there!" Something tells me the Ukrainians aren't inclined to give Putin good advice about how to hurt them.
Playing the conscription issues up in the media only serves to draw Russian attention to that weakness, too. So why are the Ukrainians permitting these stories to leak, or at least not taking any measures to limit their impact on the information space? One such story was about a man with no hands being denied an exemption from conscription, despite having been classified officially as permanently disabled for his entire life. It is an insane and ridiculous story of bureaucratic incompetence, which if true I would have expected the Ukrainians to suppress during war time because it makes them look so incompetent (again, note how the whiff of corruption and incompetence appeals to Putin's preconceived notions about Ukrainians) and because it was limited enough in scope that it could have been kept away from western reporters (unlike something as pervasive as widespread resistance to conscription). Instead the story was almost actively promoted by UAF-friendly sources like the Economist, which I believe broke the story originally. The Economist is quite explicitly pro-Ukrainian and is also cozy enough with the Ukrainian leadership to have gotten exclusive in-depth interviews with Zelensky, Zaluzhny, Budanov, Syrsky, and others, some of which I even linked as sources above. So it is out of character for them to publish such a lurid anecdote of Ukrainian incompetence.
On the other hand, if the Ukrainians wanted to convince the Russians that they are having manpower issues, one of the easiest ways to do so would be to send out their recruiters and encourage them to employ excessive aggression. Then to leak, plant, falsify, or simply permit publication of stories about the absurd lengths those officials are going to conscript new troops. The Russians would then pick up on the stories and possibly inaccurately infer manpower deficits. Even if the Russian intelligence agencies interpret the stories differently, Putin is more likely to disregard them and rely on media reports than he would have been in past years, before the FSB's incredibly inaccurate pre-war assessments of Ukraine contributed to his decision to invade. It would not surprise me at all to learn that Putin regularly reviews Russia-related press clippings from the Economist to understand how critical issues are being presented in the western media, even if only as part of a larger security or political briefing packet. In fact it would surprise me if he doesn't review at least a sampling of stories from western media, likely heavily biased toward traditional print media with wide influence like the Economist. Which makes it a viable channel for shaping Putin's perceptions, and the man without hands seems like the perfect attention grabbing detail to make sure he sees that particular story.
So basically, propaganda cuts both ways. We are operating in an information space that is quite intentionally shaped by Ukraine, and so should be careful in our conclusions about what is happening beneath the fog of war. Although, I would suggest that it's probably a good starting assumption that the Ukrainian leaders have not become suddenly much less intelligent or less capable than they have been over the last year of this war. Which isn't to say they are perfect, or that we won't see them lose their edge over time. Just that a sudden, rapid, simultaneous decline in Zaluzhny's, Zelensky's, Syrsky's, Budanov's, and the rest of the Ukrainian leadership's intelligence, judgment, and ability would be extremely unlikely. Especially if that decline persisted for a long time, as the decision to hold Bakhmut has, with ample opportunity for correction based on the widespread alarm about UAF losses.
submitted by stult to CredibleDefense [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 05:24 omniscient_void Pressure.

The last couple of months I’ve been studying for an exam that could change my life. If I pass, I’ll be able to get a good job and live comfortably with insurance. As if this isn’t enough pressure, I’ve also been feeling pathetic because I feel like most people my age have already accomplished these things. Knowing that I’m behind for my age puts even more pressure on me to succeed.
Some days I do really well on test simulations and pass with flying colors. Other days, I don’t do well at all because I get so overwhelmed. This scares the hell out of me because what if I do this on the day of the test?
The pressure is really starting to get to me. The last couple of weeks I’ve been constantly tired because I’m not sleeping well.. My head hurts almost every day.. My stress-induced neck pain is back.. I’m doing this weird thing where I lay in bed at night and (unprovoked) start listing certain events in chronological order that took place during the years I was abused.. Despite not feeling well, I spend all of my free time during the day studying because I do not feel like I can stop.
I’m exhausted and terrified I’m going to mess up everything I’ve worked for. The exam is at the beginning of April and I desperately need to get it together before then or I’m afraid I’ll never be able to escape my messed up life.
submitted by omniscient_void to CPTSD [link] [comments]

2023.03.24 05:19 Zen_Canadian The N-Word censorship on university campuses and the slippery slope to totalitarianism

Dear Mr. Peterson and the community,
I never thought I would find myself here!
Since 2018, I have read and listened to Mr. Peterson's talks and debates, especially about Bill C-16. I'm an immigration law consultant interested in matters of public law importance and the Charter. Initially, I felt that Mr. Peterson had overreacted. I didn't see the dangers of how C-16 could be applied outside of a discriminatory context. I disagreed with Mr. Peterson on many of his ideas in the discussion. Sometimes I even disliked Mr. Peterson because I saw myself as a progressive left-leaning NDP supporter. I supported my friends in their campaigns for the NDP, paid for membership, helped with ballot counting and donated to the cause. I didn't see anything wrong in working towards a kinder, more caring future where poor and marginalized people have a voice until I came onto the campus of McMaster University to study as a mature student.
I was surprised that my study program had numerous anti-racism, cultural competence, LGBTQ, and transgender workshops and seminars. I didn't mind it initially and engaged in learning whatever was offered. However, during one of our group discussions, I used the N-word twice in an inquiry into the experiences of Black people. I was shocked to find that younger members of the student body tried to censor me and called me inappropriate despite no intention of mine to offend but to seek understanding and clarity to empathize with the plight of the Black community. I was then requested to come to the administrative office for a reprimand. I triggered the trauma I had experienced in childhood; the memories flooded into my body and mind.
I am a child from a refugee family. I came to Canada at nine years old. When I was born, my father was sent to a "re-education camp" (hard labour camp), much like what the Uighurs endure now. My uncle spent ten years in a similar camp before he was released, malnourished and half-dead. My grandfather was dragged before a committee of the proletariat, subjected to public humiliation and then jailed. I grew up being told by my family to be careful what I say in school, or else the rest of the family would get arrested. To not talk freely or talk about anything that involves democracy or liberty. There were many things I couldn't say and things I was forced to say as a child to keep my family from being arrested. Walking to McMaster's administrative office, knowing I would be censured against speaking a particular word or opinion, the trauma inflicted by the totalitarian regime on my childhood flooded back into my consciousness and body. How could this happen in Canada?
This is how I understood communism and totalitarianism happen. It pretends to be caring for the oppressed (proletariat) and marginalized. It uses force to elevate their rights above those they see as suppressors. Then that is applied universally to everyone in restricting freedom of speech, conscience, thought and behaviour, slowly a little at a time until society's structure is broken down. Mao's red guards were students dragging their professors, teachers, and educators out to punish and humiliate them publically. Those people were then jailed. Those same people supported the Marxist ideologies in their early days. Little did they know they were digging their graves. The same happened in other countries in Asia that this ideology infected. My uncle was a psychology professor like you. My grandfather was a farmer and intellectual with some inherited land. My father was a child of an engineer who built the railroad and a public servant. His mother supported the communists in their early days and died for the cause.
If McMaster University censors me and takes administrative action against me, I will respectfully request the court to clarify the Charter's application on the N-Word, now thanks to Doug Ford (someone I don't like), who implemented a public policy of free speech on the universities, the Charter provisions applies to all Ontario Universities.
Democracy is messy. It demands that we listen to each other, no matter how offensive the ideas or subject. The slippery slope to totalitarianism begins with curtailing free speech and descent, a cornerstone of democracy. I don't want to see my 2nd home devolve into totalitarianism like my first home.
Boddhisattva, help us all!
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2023.03.24 05:13 littlecumslut2 to speak honestly

I know what I want I know where it has lead me and after I went to therapy recently ive realized thanks to my doctor that it was a way to vent bent up emotional damage etc that has helped me much overcome it because now at least I know where it's coming from and I see the real monster that I have to face and it isn't my porn/masturbation addection but what is now hurting me and ive told my doctor is that now that I don't engage in my addection that I don't allow it to take over me but I overpower it and stop it from controlling now emotions of anger haterd and mostly sadness stand atop my every thought like a cloud full of water and when it rains I just start crying at every other corner every place even work and I don't want to be the guy who's getting caught with dust in his eye for the 10th time today I know am strong I know I am not hopeless or helpless but it's eating me alive it's like a concrete brick hitting me at 100mph how can I escape this dreadfull beast plus like considering how am sleeping 14 hours a day after work not doing anything productive what do ever so annoying 😢 give me advice
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2023.03.24 04:58 travelwriterintech Cutting weight for a multi-day.

Hello! I'm going to be solo-ing Rockwall Pass (ALB) in August. Well, not really solo, because I'll be with my four-legged buddy. We'll be out for 4 nights total, 55 km point2point.
I'm thinking about weight and am budgeting to upgrade some of my current gear. Looking for some lightweight gearheads for advice on where I can trim some fat (or if I need to at all).
Also looking to see if this weight would work for a frameless backpack - I'm considering switching to Hyperlite. Any suggestions for volume/specific packs would be appreciated.
Here is my LighterPack breakdown of my current gear: Worn hiking clothes are not included.
A few notes that may be helpful:
When I finalize this gear setup, it'll be used for more than just this trip. Planning at least 5-7 overnighters for the spring/summer Any advice would be much appreciated!
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2023.03.24 04:52 catty_wampus Making a career out of early intervention, risks versus rewards?

I am curious if there are any SLPs with insights about working in early intervention for the majority of their career.
I was in SNF for six years and hated it. I have been in EI for three years now, and I think this could be what I do for the rest of my career. Things I really enjoy: Parent coaching (really like working with adults on functional ideas for their kids), being out and about in the world (not cooped up in a nursing home all day every day), the playfulness, the limited age range, lots of flexibility in my schedule.
However, the aspects of having to spend so much time driving and having to go into strangers' homes make me very anxious. I feel like statistically, it's only a matter of time until something really bad happens.
I am worried about getting into a car accident (my risk of dying on the job has significantly increased just by spending more time driving), getting stranded in my car (particularly in a flood or snow situation), getting stranded on the road or in a home during a tornado, having my car broken into, being mugged/robbed, being physically attacked in a home or in a neighborhood, getting bed bugs, being attacked by a dog, being accused of something untrue involving a child, being accused of damaging someone's property. I am worried about my exposure to secondhand smoke having serious effects on my health. Some of the homes I go into I also suspect have mold issues because even in the absence of cigarette smoke, I have trouble breathing and coughing. I encounter a lot of homes that smell like weed in a state where it's not legal, to the point it's hard to breathe and it's all in my hair and clothes. I've already had two cases where CPS has been in contact with me about a family I see (because of issues with the parents), but luckily I haven't had to go to court. Yet.
So those out there that have been in EI for many years, how many of those really bad things have you experienced? I feel I get paid okay, but I don't get paid enough to deal with any of those things if/when they actually happen to me. I've thought about trying to get into outpatient for more peace of mind, but I would lose so much of what I love about EI. I would love to continue to invest in CEUs and certifications to get better in this setting (not cheap and have already spent sooo much money), but part of me is not sure that this is a safe investment. I originally was looking at the schools after SNF, but all I see online are school SLPs hating their lives.
submitted by catty_wampus to slp [link] [comments]