U.S. intelligence officers do not consider it is potential for Ukraine to succeed in Melitopol, a southeastern metropolis occupied by Russia. Town is essential to Ukraine’s offensive and aim of severing Russia’s land bridge to Crimea, however Moscow’s forces have fortifications and defensive strains in place. Ukraine could possibly breach one, “however can they breach all three and have sufficient forces out there after taking attrition to realize one thing extra important like taking Tokmak or one thing past that,” navy analyst Rob Lee requested in an interview with The Washington Submit.
The U.S. has permitted the sale of F-16 fighter jets to Kyiv, however Ukrainian protection officers do not consider they may obtain them earlier than the brand new 12 months. That might make the counteroffensive harder, although not unimaginable. “When you count on Ukraine to struggle like we struggle, then they must have the instruments that we’ve got, and we’ve got not given them these instruments,” former NATO commander Philip Breedlove advised The New York Instances.
Russia has confirmed extra resilient towards Ukraine’s offensive than beforehand anticipated. However Ukraine might nonetheless push forward, so long as Western international locations decide to the funding and provides the nation requires to interrupt by Russia’s defenses, Frederick Kagan, Karolina Hird, and Kateryna Stepanenko argued in Time journal. “It’s nonetheless maneuver warfare moderately than attritional warfare, simply at a slower tempo. It subsequently requires persistence, however it will probably succeed,” they wrote.