Saturday, May 21, 2022

As Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine Stalls, Critical Voices Emerge in Moscow; Can Ukraine Win? Five Scenarios for the War’s Next Phase; US intel shows Russians fear Mariupol abuse will backfire; U.S. launches program to capture, analyze evidence of Russian war crimes in Ukraine, LIVE UPDATES and MORE

As Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine Stalls, Critical Voices Emerge in Moscow:
Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine earlier this year, commentators loyal to the Kremlin have applauded the war effort and praised the country’s military leadership. But as Russian setbacks on the battlefield have mounted, critical voices have grown louder.
In a television appearance this week, retired Col. Mikhail Khodaryonok cautioned viewers that “the situation will clearly get worse for us” in Ukraine as Western countries step up arms shipments and financial support for Kyiv.
“The most important thing for us is to hold fast to a standpoint of military and political realism,” Col. Khodaryonok said. “If you lose that, then history will hit you so hard, you won’t know what happened.”
The former officer has opposed the invasion from the start, saying it wouldn’t further Russia’s national interests. But his tense exchange with a host on state TV’s Channel One was a rare and high-profile criticism of the Kremlin on an outlet known for promoting the government’s line.
Days later, Col. Khodaryonok reappeared on the same program with a change of tone, overtly pushing the Kremlin’s narrative and warning of coming Russian victories: “Soon all that will be left of American howitzers will be memories.”
Russia’s state-controlled media, which have major influence over public opinion, overwhelmingly support the invasion and portray what Moscow calls its “special military operation” in a positive light. Independent polls show that public support for the war and President Vladimir Putin remain very high.
But, following Russia’s retreat from Kyiv and the northeastern city of Kharkiv, more sober assessments have emerged. --->READ MORE HERE
Manu Brabo for The Wall Street Journal
Can Ukraine Win? Five Scenarios for the War’s Next Phase
Russia’s shift to a scaled-down offensive in the east and southeast looks increasingly difficult for Putin to pull off
Nobody knows how or when the war will end in Ukraine, but it’s clear that right now Russia isn’t winning. According to Western governments and private analysts, Moscow failed to achieve its initial goal of a lightning strike into Kyiv to take down the government. And success for its Plan B, a scaled-down offensive to push Ukrainian forces back in the east and southeast of the country, looks increasingly difficult.
Some things that seemed highly probable at the start of the war, such as the collapse of the Ukrainian state, now are seen as unlikely. Ukraine is in an existential fight, said the chief of the British defense staff, Adm. Tony Radakin in a speech in London on Monday, “and it is going to survive.”
In this latest phase of the war, tank battles are being supplanted by artillery-dominated exchanges. The Russians are undertaking offensives in some places, including in the eastern region of Luhansk. They finally overcame the last remaining Ukrainian holdouts in the southern port city of Mariupol. Elsewhere, the Ukrainians are counterattacking, most notably in the north beyond Kharkiv.
“The war is entering a protracted phase,” Ukrainian defense minister Oleksii Reznikov told European Union defense ministers on Tuesday. He said there were “many indications of Russia preparing for a long-term military operation,” including engineering and fortification works in the Kherson and Zaporizhya areas.
Even so, sooner or later, the war will end in a cease-fire or armistice. Given the new realities on the ground, here are five possible scenarios on where the conflict could go, some of which could follow from another.
1. A Russian collapse
Highly motivated, well-armed and tactically adept Ukrainian forces have exploited weaknesses in the Russian military. The Russians have struggled with weak logistics and with coordinating different elements of their campaign. They have suffered from poor equipment and training, and in places low morale. Among the tens of thousands of estimated Russian casualties, their officer corps has been seriously weakened, according to Western analyses. --->READ MORE HERE
Follow links below to +++++relevant+++++ and related stories:

+++++Russia-Ukraine News LATEST UPDATES: (REUTERS) (AP) (NY POST) and (WSJ)+++++

+++++US intel shows Russians fear Mariupol abuse will backfire+++++

+++++U.S. launches program to capture, analyze evidence of Russian war crimes in Ukraine+++++

What the Geneva Conventions Dictate for Mariupol POWs

Ukraine hopes to swap steel mill fighters for Russian POWs

Russian Soldier Admits Shooting Unarmed Civilian in First War-Crime Trial in Ukraine

US reopens Ukraine embassy as tide turns against Russian invasion

U.S., Allies Discuss Economic Aid for Ukraine at G-7 Meeting

EU Proposes Up to $9.5 Billion in Short-Term Funding for Ukraine

Senate Confirms Bridget Brink as U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine

Brink confirmed as US ambassador to Ukraine

How Russian Businesses Are Skirting Sanctions

Germany Moves to Strip Former Chancellor Schröder of Parliamentary Office Over Putin Ties

U.S. Saw Signs of Decline in Russian Ransomware Strikes at Start of Ukraine War

U.K. Sanctions Russian Airlines

If you like what you see, please "Like" and/or Follow us on FACEBOOK here, GETTR here, and TWITTER here.

No comments: