As I See It Russia’s Putin employs “One step backward, two steps forward” military strategy,


Russia withdrew its military troops from the northern cities of Kyiv and Bucha, but started its assault in the eastern parts of Ukraine.

I think, this must be Putin’s modern military version of Philippine basketball coach Tommy Manotoc’s epic “One step backward, two steps forward” coaching technique which was likewise employed by American coach Tim Cone!

Manotoc uttered the unforgettable line ‘One step backward, two steps forward,’ when asked about his coaching approach during the 1980 PBA Open Conference which was likewise echoed by Cone.

After the game, when asked by reporters why he gave up with so much time remaining, he quipped, “One step back, two steps forward,” referring to his tactic of reserving his players’ energy in preparation for sudden death Game Five.

His tactic worked as the Wranglers overhauled a four-point deficit, sent the game into Overtime (OT), and won the series.

“I’m just a big picture thinker.

I just really felt that this is about winning the series and not just about winning one game,” said Cone in the post-game interview.

But it was not Manotoc who Cone mentioned but legendary NBA coach Phil Jackson, who he said did the same thing with Chicago during the Bulls’ championship run with the great Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen in the nineties.

This must be the same mentality Putin is thinking as he waged full military assault to other areas of Ukraine, after his withdrawal in occupied cities, to attain his personal selfish ambition of erasing Ukraine from the world map!

Putin withdrew from Ukraine’s occupied cities, but shifted its barbarian assault to other key cities especially in the eastern part of the country.

As he moved to other areas, Ukrainians discovered the atrocities he committed in areas formerly occupied with inhuman killings of innocent civilians plus traces of unforgivable torture and rape incidents.

Written by Edmund Lao for Personal Finance/Business Mirror, “Two steps forward, one step back,” is usually a negative term to describe someone who is having trouble making progress.

But switched around, “One Step Back, Two Steps Forward,” means that instead of grousing or feeling guilty about a misstep, you can still come out ahead if you put your head down and push forward.

In military parlance, can we also do a Tommy Manotoc? The answer is Yes as Putin is employing right now the coaching strategy of Manotoc in the Ukraine-Russia war.

As to winning the war with this tactic, it remains to be seen since Ukraine is determined to defend their country to the hilt which they are doing with aggressiveness and resolve at this time.

The Ukraine-Russia war is on its second month and there’s no clear sign when it will end. While the war is ongoing though, there are signs of diplomatic progress and negotiations but still inconclusive to end the war.

Associated Press (AP) reported that “Moscow faced global revulsion and accusations of war crimes Monday after the Russian pullout from the outskirts of Kyiv revealed streets, buildings and yards strewn with corpses of what appeared to be civilians, many of them evidently killed at close range.”

The horrible images of battered or burned bodies left out in the open or hastily buried led to calls for tougher sanctions against the Kremlin, especially a cutoff of fuel imports from Russia.

Germany and France reacted by expelling dozens of Russian diplomats, suggesting they were spies, and U.S. President Joe Biden said Russian leader Vladimir Putin should be tried for war crimes.

“This guy is brutal, and what’s happening in Bucha is outrageous,” Biden said, referring to the town northwest of the capital that was the scene of some of the horrors.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, in his nightly video address, pledged that Ukraine would work with the European Union (EU) and the International Criminal Court (ICC) to identify Russian fighters involved in any atrocities.

Ukrainian officials said the bodies of at least 410 civilians have been found in towns around Kyiv that were recaptured from Russian forces in recent days.

The Ukrainian prosecutor-general’s office described one room discovered in Bucha as a “torture chamber.

” In a statement, it said the bodies of five men with their hands bound were found in the basement of a children’s sanatorium where civilians were tortured and killed.

In a latest development reported by Wall Street Journal, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky addressed the United Nations Security Council with a list of accusations of Russian atrocities and a call for the overhaul of the institution. Russia dismissed reports of slain civilians.

The U.S. and the European Union said they would help Ukrainian authorities gather evidence for investigations into alleged war crimes, while France said it is opening its own probe.

Ukrainian authorities braced for the discovery of more civilian deaths in cities and towns around the capital from which Russian forces have retreated.

Following reports of alleged Russian war crimes in Ukraine, the U.S. and EU moved to tighten sanctions on Moscow.

Measures proposed by the EU’s executive body included a ban on imports of Russian coal and the sanctioning of two daughters of President Vladimir Putin. U.S. measures under consideration also included tighter restrictions on Russian financial institutions.

To support their goal of establishing control over the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, reports said that Russia reinforced its positions in the war.

Because of this, NATO’s chief urged the rapid resupply of Kyiv’s forces, anticipating a concerted Russian assault on Ukraine’s southeast.

The Czech Republic has been sending tanks into Ukraine, the first foreign country to do so since the Russian invasion began.

A WSJ analysis of images from Ukraine shows how Russian forces destroyed civilian infrastructure, including the use of cluster bombs.

In areas to the northwest of Kyiv, occupied for more than a month by the Russians, James Marson wrote: “…military engineers were working to bandoned armored vehicles, and residents were seeking food and assessing damage to their homes and businesses.”

In Borodyanka, a town of some 12,000 about 30 miles northwest of Kyiv, damage marred nearly every building along the central street.

Further reports indicated that Ukrainian forces took the village of Makariv to the south at the end of March and hammered Russian positions all around. Russia set up artillery in a field near the village of Andriyivka and parked armored cars in the yards of houses.

Lidiya Vorobei, a resident, of the Russian troops, said “They were using us as cover.” She said she spent the past month mostly in the basement as Ukrainian artillery sought to blast the Russians out.

Many of the houses in the village are badly damaged and razed to the ground.

Ukrainian authorities have said Borodyanka might have been hit the hardest by Russian forces of cities and towns around the capital. The city council of Bucha, also in the region, updated the death toll there to 320 on Tuesday.

Let us be careful in addressing the new military technic Putin has just started and be more alert and aggressive in dealing with it.

Otherwise, it will finally put Ukraine down or may signal the 3rd World War. The US, G7 countries and the rest of the world are trying to prevent this from happening.

(ELPIDIO R. ESTIOKO was a veteran journalist in the Philippines and a multi-awarded journalist here in the US. For feedbacks, comments… please email the author at