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"Important event" in sight: Ukrainian offensives as "beginning of the end of the war"


In the Ukraine war, a Ukrainian counterattack is imminent. But the goal of the offensive is unclear. Experts speculate about possible points of attack.

In the Ukraine war, a Ukrainian counterattack is imminent.

But the goal of the offensive is unclear.

Experts speculate about possible points of attack.

KIEV – After months of attrition along the frontline, a counteroffensive by the Ukrainian army is apparently imminent.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy again hinted at an impending attack on Monday evening.

"We are preparing for important events," wrote the head of state on Twitter after a meeting with Poland's President Andrzej Duda.

Selenskyj deliberately only hints at the planned offensive actions in a vague way.

Russia's troops should know something is coming.

But where will the Ukrainian troops strike first?

Ukrainian war counter-offensive: Kiev must repeat 'disinformation operation'

The element of surprise and the unpredictability of their attacks are among the great strengths of the Ukrainian army.

This could also be observed at the start of the last counter-offensive in September 2022.

While Western observers - and apparently also the Russian troops - had expected an attack on Cherson in the south, Ukraine instead struck in the north.

The Russian army, surprised by the attack, fled almost chaotically and the Ukrainian troops were able to push the invaders back almost completely from the Kharkiv region. 

"I expect them to repeat a similar disinformation operation," said Mark Voyger of the Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA) in an interview with



“They must successfully repeat what they did in the fall;

this is crucial.” Along the front lines, the Ukrainian generals have several options.

south or east?

Where does the Ukrainian counter-offensive start?

According to Voyger, a Ukrainian advance towards the Donbas is rather unlikely.

In the area, which includes parts of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, pro-Russian separatists have been building defense and fortification structures for years.

"If the Ukrainians tried to launch a major offensive in this area, I assume that the defense lines there are more substantial than those in the south," Voyger explains his assessment.

Ukraine war: Melitopol as a possible target – does Kiev dare to push south?

In the southern regions, Ukrainian forces could aim for a push along the Black Sea coast.

Russian troops had conquered the areas east of the Dnieper River in the first months of the war.

Among other things, the metropolis of Mariupol was largely destroyed.

A first intermediate goal for Kiev could be the recapture of the city of Melitopol in the spring.

Recapturing the Cherson-Melitopol-Mariupol axis was already one of Kiev's declared goals last summer.

On the rather flat terrain in the Cherson and Zaporizhia regions, the Ukrainian military could also better exploit the advantages of western main battle tanks.

Should the counter-offensive from the city of Zaporizhia head south towards Melitopoil, the Ukrainian army could encircle the Russian troops in the Kherson region and cut them off from the troops in the east.

However, these attacks would not be easy, since the Ukrainian armed forces would first have to cross the Dnieper River.

Alex Kokcharov, a risk analyst specializing in Russia and Ukraine, told


of "high-risk operations."

There are no easy options in the current phase of the war.

Ukrainian counteroffensive: Expert considers a counterattack at Bachmut unlikely

The head of the Wagner private army group, Yevgeny Prigozhin, had recently even publicly warned of a Ukrainian counterattack in Bakhmut.

Russian troops had been trying to take the city for months - so far without success.

Even if Kiev has so far decided against withdrawing, a counter-offensive there would have little chance of success.

"I am also skeptical that the Ukrainians would try to carry out counter-offensives in heavily urbanized areas in Donetsk, Horlivka or Bakhmut, because this would be a very costly house-to-house fight," Kokcharov assesses the front-line situation in the region.

Video: Ukrainian commander confirms imminent counteroffensive

Ukrainian counteroffensive imminent: could be “the beginning of the end of this war”

What plans President Zelenskyy and his generals actually prefer for the counteroffensive remains a matter of speculation at the moment.

However, the last Ukrainian offensive showed that Kiev does not always choose the obvious path.

However, it seems clear that the next Ukrainian advance must be carefully considered.

The Australian military expert and retired General Mick Ryan explained in a post on Twitter that the counter-offensive in the current phase could have a major impact on the further course of the war.

"Ukraine wants to regain the initiative in this war," Ryan wrote.

Military successes could further weaken the morale of the Russian troops and at the same time significantly raise the morale of their own soldiers and civilians.

According to the expert's assessment, a successful offensive in Ukraine should also send a signal to its western partners and persuade them to continue supplying weapons.

Pictures of the Ukraine war: great horror and small moments of happiness

Pictures of the Ukraine war: great horror and small moments of happiness

"The offensives launched over the next few months will be heartbreakingly bloody and may not be the final blow to destroy the Russian army in Ukraine," Ryan wrote at the end of his post.

"But if the West keeps its nerve and the Ukrainians can undeterred use their fighting power against the Russians and recapture large parts of their country, the offensives could be the beginning of the end of this war." (fd


Source: merkur

All news articles on 2023-03-28

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