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The one time Putin should have taken Hitler's advice...

When the Kriegsmarine wasn't doing too well, the "Deutschland," a vaunted "pocket battleship," was ordered re-named so "The Germany" would not be sunk by the Allies.

But in their current war-crimes-laden "special military operation," the arrogant Russians sent the "Moskva" (aka Moscow) in close-shore support of their invasion of Ukraine, as the forward-deployed flagship of their Black Sea Fleet.

They really should have read-up on the power of Old World curses after Ukraine's little Snake Island garrison, when given a surrender ultimatum, told the huge ship her crew, and the fleet they were commanding, to go f* themselves.

Now, too late, "Moskva" is being "withdrawn." That's after the "Moskva" had to have her crew evacuated in a classic "abandon ship!" ...following at least one major explosion and fear it would lead to the ship being catastrophically lost in a Jutland-like flash and smoke cloud.

Who To Believe? by Pat Byrnes,

Who To Believe? by Pat Byrnes,

Cause of alarm? Either

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  • two Ukrainian-designed-and-built antiship missiles, or 
  • Russian incompetence on board that detonated the ship's own explosive ordnance and caused one helluva fire. 

It depends on your source. And if Russian state media is your source, they are not hiding their version from their countrymen. Seems if "Moscow" is in flames, you can't hide it, eh?

Either way, the strict top-down, no-subordinate-initiative, command authority of the Russian military left the entire Black Sea Fleet in disarray. The whole shebang, now leaderless, may need to withdraw like a litter of yipping puppies, following a charred leader with its tail between its legs.

Minus one puppy. The "Moskva" was commanding when Snake Island was attacked. The much smaller subordinate vessel that did the actual attack on the island was the "Vasily Bykov," and the Ukranians destroyed that ship a month ago.

It's much more good news for coastal Ukraine's civilian populace, who have been suffering from Russian naval artillery bombardments and ship-to-shore missile attacks.

As for the "Deutschland"? At Hitler's behest, she became the "Lutzow." She was, also, nearly blown out of the water and "withdrawn for repairs." She survived the war and was "expended" in 1947 as a target ship. Are you listening, Mr. Putin? The Ukrainians are probably tinkering with newer designs that need testing, too.

Here's a Reuters story on what happened to "Moskva":