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Tags: russia | vladimir putin | ukraine | offensive | war | troops

Report: Putin Plans Ukraine Offensive, Expects Long War


By    |   Friday, 27 January 2023 09:19 AM EST

Russian President Vladimir Putin is preparing a new major offensive in Ukraine while also expecting the war to last for years, Bloomberg reported.

Putin, who began his country's unprovoked attack on Feb. 24, has seen his forces suffer months of losing ground.

Now, he intends to demonstrate that Russian troops can regain the initiative to put pressure on Ukrainian leaders to agree to a truce that leaves the Kremlin in control of the territory it currently occupies, Bloomberg reported, citing sources.

Putin's renewed offensive could start as soon as February or March, Bloomberg said.

Sources told the outlet that Putin believes he has no alternative but to prevail in a conflict he sees as an existential one with the U.S. and its allies.

"Putin is disappointed at how things are going but he isn't ready to abandon his goals," said Tatiana Stanovaya, founder of R.Politik, a political consultancy. "It just means that the route will be longer, more bloody, and worse for everyone."

Even Putin can't ignore the surprising weaknesses of his military, sources told Bloomberg. Russian troops have lost more than half of their initial gains in Ukraine.

Still, Putin remains convinced that Russia's larger forces and willingness to accept casualties will lead to victory.

Bloomberg reported that many Kremlin officials have become more realistic, and understand that holding the current front line will be difficult.

"So far the results have been appalling because Russia wasn't at all ready," said Sergei Markov, a political consultant with close Kremlin ties, Bloomberg reported.

"It's morphed into a drawn-out war, and Russia doesn't yet have enough manpower or equipment to wage it. We must stop the Ukrainian counter-offensive and thwart the West's efforts to defeat us by gaining the military edge."

It was reported Sunday that Russian forces have suffered 180,000 killed or wounded in Ukraine so far, while the figure for the Ukrainians is 100,000 military casualties and 30,000 dead civilians, according to estimates released by Norway's army chief.

Officials from Ukraine and its allies have warned that a new Russian offensive is coming, and it could happen before Kyiv gets newly promised supplies of U.S. and European battle tanks.

The U.S. will send Ukraine the advanced configuration of the Abrams tank, Politico reported. Germany said it will provide Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy's forces with Leopard 2 battle tanks and approve requests by other countries to do the same.

Bloomberg reported that U.S. and European intelligence officials question if Russia has the resources for a major new offensive, even after mobilizing 300,000 additional troops in the fall.

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Russian President Vladimir Putin is preparing a new major offensive in Ukraine while also expecting the war to last for years, Bloomberg reported.
russia, vladimir putin, ukraine, offensive, war, troops
Friday, 27 January 2023 09:19 AM
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