Russia suffered its greatest humiliation since its forces retreated from Kyiv in the spring. On September 11, Russian retreated from Kharkiv Oblast in the north and Ukrainian forces retook key logistical and rail hubs in Ukraine’s northeast. Moscow responded with a number of missile strikes targeting critical infrastructure in Kharkiv, depriving Ukrainians of heat, water, and power. Ukraine remains undeterred and on the march. If Ukraine can hold its gains, the counteroffensive represents a serious blow to Moscow’s war effort and demonstrates the professionalism and capability of Ukrainian forces. Some Russian forces have deserted and morale remains a serious challenge.
President Zelenskyy has said that he wants the war to be over by Christmas. Is that a realistic target? What more weapons and assistance does Kyiv need to regain all the territory Ukraine lost since Moscow’s February 24 offensive and to push the remaining Russian soldiers entirely out of Donbas? What does Ukraine’s increasingly successful counteroffensive mean for Russia and Putin’s longevity as president?
Ambassador John Herbst, senior director of the Atlantic Council’s Eurasia Center, moderates a discussion with General (Ret.) Wes Clark, former Supreme Allied Commander Europe, the Honorable Jim Costa (D-CA), US Representative and member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Illia Ponomarenko, defense reporter at the Kyiv Independent, Dr. Hanna Shelest, director of security programs at the Foreign Policy Council “Ukrainian Prism” and editor-in-chief at Ukraine Analytica, and Andriy Zagorodnyuk, distinguished fellow at the Eurasia Center, on the latest military developments in Ukraine.
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Europe in crisis
War in Ukraine
In February 2022, Moscow launched an all-out invasion of Ukraine after a months-long military build-up, threatening the country’s sovereignty and its future. This existential moment for the country follows the 2014 Maidan revolution, a nexus for Ukraine’s Europe-focused foreign policy and reform efforts. The ensuing Russian invasion and occupation of Crimea, aggression in Ukraine’s east, and Kremlin disinformation efforts, cast a shadow over Ukraine’s independence.
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