“Ukrainians to push Russian forces back to February 23 line by year’s end.” General Hodges for the Echo

Conflicting news flows from the Ukrainian front every day, and the layman has no chance to know the situation. Who wins? When will the conflict end? How are the two armies doing? One of those watching the situation closely is the former commander of the United States Army in Europe, retired Lt. Gen. Ben Hodges. He believes that if the West fulfills all supply promises and keeps sanctions in place, Ukraine can push Russian forces back to the February 23 line by the end of the year.

The front in Ukraine doesn’t seem to be moving much in the last few weeks. Has the war reached its peak?

I think what we are seeing is a tipping point in the war. The dynamic shifted from the Russian side to the Ukrainian side. The Russians had reached a climax. Their logistics system is exhausted. They have big personnel problems. They still don’t quite know how to use command and control, so they don’t know how to operate it all. And also, of course, they lost a number of officers. Add to that the destruction of Ukraine and the degradation of Russian logistics, ammunition depots and everything else, and the Russians are in trouble. While it seems to me that the Ukrainian logistics situation is getting a little better every week. In recent days, there have been announcements of large aid packages from Germany, Britain, and the USA. No one is offering to help Russia. So, in my opinion, the Ukrainians are using the current time to prepare the conditions for a counter-offensive, which I assume will be launched in about two months. Of course, I don’t know exactly when, Ukrainians protect their information very well. But I think at the end of the year the battlefield will look very different.

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said the pace of the advance has slowed because Russia wants to limit civilian casualties, which seems unlikely. But do you now see any strategy behind Russia’s progress? I’m no expert, but it looks like there isn’t one.

I also read Shoigu’s statement. I don’t understand why he would even say such a thing. Why did he have to say that? Unless it would be an answer to someone’s question as to why everything seems to have slowed down and if the Russian side is having problems. I don’t think anyone in the world believes that the Russians slowed down their operations to minimize civilian casualties. I think they slowed down because they ran out of energy. They are unable to continue offensive operations. This is what culmination means. The help that the West is providing is exactly what is needed, and it is clear that it has contributed to slowing down the Russians and to the dogged Ukrainian defenses. But it doesn’t have to last forever. The West must deliver the things it promised so that Ukraine can finish its work.

What weapons does the West still have to deliver?

Could general mobilization in Russia change the situation?

Why is Kherson so important to Ukrainians and why has the promised counter-offensive not happened yet?

Why was Ukraine not crushed by the Russian Air Force when all analyzes before the war assumed Russian air superiority?

Was the information about the modernization and professionalization of the Russian army, which sounded for the last ten years, essentially fake news?

What will Ukraine’s strategy be in the future, apart from interfering with supply lines?

How is it with the numerical comparison of the two armies?

You can read the entire interview on ECHOPRIME or from Thursday in the printed edition of the Weekly Echo. You can subscribe to the weekly Echo from 249 crowns per month here.

Ben Hodges (1958) was born in Florida. He graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1980. He served in Iraq and Afghanistan. In 2014, he was appointed commander of US forces in Europe. He retired in 2017. He now works for the non-profit organization Human Rights First.

The article is in Czech

Tags: Ukrainians #push Russian forces #February line years General #Hodges #Echo

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