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Ukraine crisis: Putin’s tough strategy

Ukraine crisis: Putin’s tough strategy

Russia is sending its army to Belarus, officially for a “harmless” military exercise with the neighboring state. Video recordings reveal otherwise: the Russian army is concentrating precisely where no maneuvers are actually supposed to take place. These are clear indications of Putin’s war tactics.

editorial staff
19 January 2022 18:06

Although Russia officially denies planning an attack on Ukraine, video footage of Russian military deployments speaks a different language. They show that Putin is willing to do anything to prevent Ukraine from joining NATO. Military experts now consider a war to be very likely.

The Kremlin has been moving its troops to Belarus, north of Ukraine, since the weekend. Officially, the two heads of state, Alexander Lukashenko and Vladimir Putin, want the joint maneuver to be completed by February 20. But in reality, as experts suspect, there is more to it than that. In this way, Putin wants to put pressure on Ukraine and overwhelm the Ukrainian military.

“The more Russia can force Ukraine to deploy its troops along an ever-longer potential front, the less resistance there will be in one place should Putin decide to strike,” said military expert Gustav Gressel of the European Council on Foreign Relations in Berlin to the Bild newspaper. In the event of an invasion, Russia would “not advance on the whole front, but drive anti-tank wedges into Ukraine. When the Ukrainian troops want to rush to reinforce their attacked units, Russia’s air force gets into action. That is why a longer front is advantageous for the Kremlin.”

The Austrian military expert suspects that Russia could advance towards Kiev from the region around Gomel, the second largest city in Belarus. The latest recordings prove him right. According to the official maneuver plan, no military maneuvers were to take place in Gomel at all. But this is exactly where Putin unloads his military from the trains to march towards Ukraine, as video footage shows. From Brest, further west, Russian units could push south to cut off Kiev from the Polish border and possible supplies.”

Gressel’s forecast bodes ill: “An attack is not yet set in stone, but in Washington and London it is expected with increasing certainty.” A Russian breakthrough to the cities of Ukraine is “unfortunately a likely scenario at the moment”.

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