Russia Can’t Seem to Win in Eastern Ukraine: Last week the Russian military better vocalized its new goals in Ukraine. Now, Moscow’s objective is to capture the southern and eastern parts of Ukraine and physically link them to Russia.
“Listen Up, Here’s The New Plan”
On Friday, Major General Rustam Minnekaev, a senior Russian military officer and Central Military District’s acting commanding officer, stated at the annual meeting of the Union of Defense Industries of the Sverdlovsk Region that the Russian military’s goals are to establish full control over the Donbas and south Ukraine.
“Since the beginning of the second phase of the special operation, it has already begun literally two days ago, one of the tasks of the Russian army is to establish full control over the Donbass and southern Ukraine. This will provide a land corridor to the Crimea, as well as influence the vital objects of the Ukrainian economy,” the Russian flag officer said.
The new Russian objectives are corroborated by the Ukrainian military.
“The russian [sic] enemy is conducting offensive operations in the Eastern Operational Zone in order to defeat the Joint Forces, establish full control over the territory of Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts, and secure a land route between these territories and the occupied Crimea,” the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense stated on Sunday.
But the Russian plans aren’t limited to Ukraine. Located in the east of Moldova, Transnistria is a breakaway province mostly comprised of pro-Russian people. And it seems that the Russian military might be trying to reach that part too.
“Control over the south of Ukraine is another way out to Transnistria, where there are also facts of oppression of the Russian-speaking population,” Minnekaev stated.
Transnistria is much smaller—and less important—than the Ukrainian breakaway pro-Russian provinces of Donetsk and Luhansk in eastern Ukraine.
Rusia’s Offensive: How It’s Going
However, the Russian war effort isn’t going as planned. The renewed offensive in the east hasn’t achieved anything thus far.
Assessing the renewed Russian offensive, the British Ministry of Defense stated that so far, the Russian military has made minor advances in some areas but has failed to achieve a major breakthrough, partly because of the constant logistical issues that have been plaguing the Russian war effort since the beginning.
“Russia has made minor advances in some areas since shifting its focus to fully occupying the Donbas. Without sufficient logistical and combat support enablers in place, Russia has yet to achieve a significant breakthrough. Russia’s decision to besiege rather than attack Mariupol’s Azovstal steel plant means many Russian units remain fixed in the city and cannot be redeployed. Ukraine’s defence of Mariupol has also exhausted many Russian units and reduced their combat effectiveness. Russia’s Ministry of Defence has proposed compensation payments for the families of deceased service personnel be overseen by military rather than civilian officials. This likely reflects a desire to hide the true scale of Russia’s losses from the domestic population,” the British Military Intelligence stated.
1945’s New Defense and National Security Columnist, Stavros Atlamazoglou is a seasoned defense journalist specializing in special operations, a Hellenic Army veteran (national service with the 575th Marine Battalion and Army HQ), and a Johns Hopkins University graduate. His work has been featured in Business Insider, Sandboxx, and SOFREP.