In 2014, while affiliated with the University of Birmingham in England, Dr. Morris participated in a panel Wikinews interviewed on the Russian annexation of Crimea. The same year, he was shortlisted for the BBC Radio 4 program Thinking Allowed‘s Ethnography Award for his 2013 article Beyond coping? Alternatives to consumption within a social network of Russian workers, published in Ethnography.
His books include Everyday Postsocialism: Working-class Life Strategies in the Russian Margins, published in 2016.
Interview with Dr. Morris
Western foreign policy experts have talked much recently of a potential Ukrainian offensive to retake Crimea and whether such could succeed. What do you think?
Jeremy Morris No one knows outside US intelligence because it is unclear how many usable troops Ukrainians can put into an offensive. Many emphasise high Russian losses, but Ukrainian losses are also very high.
WN If you were Ukrainian leadership, what would your plan be for such an offensive? Are there are other regions you would attack first?
Jeremy Morris I would not try to take Crimea before re-taking all of the Donbas. Crimea is easy to defend. Also Crimea is a ‘red line’ for Putin – an offensive would lead to significant escalation from [the] Russian side.
Jeremy Morris It’s hard to imagine how big these fronts are. Until one side can really effectively use combined arms, there won’t be a sustained move in lines. It’s more about reserves and manpower because any offensive will result in mass casualties, as we’ve seen already.
WN Do you think the West will donate fighter jets to Ukraine, as the latter has asked?
Jeremy Morris This is probably inevitable, but will lead to escalation on [the] Russian side.
Jeremy Morris It is a serious decision, but one taken from a position of weakness – [the] US can easily ‘out-develop’ new nuclear delivery vehicles and Russia’s advanced industrial capacity is much more limited than many think.
WN How does the Russian economy look? Have Western sanctions had a tangible impact?
Jeremy Morris On economy – yes, a serious effect on living standards. However, a high intensity [World War I]-style conflict could be sustained for many years by Russia unless Ukraine uses more advanced weapons and tactics.
THIS ARTICLE ORIGINALLY POSTED HERE.