British Officials Say Russia Will “Run Out Of Steam” In Ukraine – The head of Britain’s foreign intelligence service MI6 said this week that Russia is unlikely to be able to maintain its military campaign in Ukraine at its current pace, and Ukraine may have an opportunity to push back in the coming weeks and months.
Richard Moore, the chief of the MI6 Secret Intelligence Service, said that Russia has seen “epic fails” over the last five months, insisting that Russia was still hurting over the fact that it had failed to conquer Kyiv and central Ukraine.
During a speech at the Aspen Security Forum, Moore said that the invasion was the most ‘egregious naked act of aggression” since the end of World War Two, and dismissed recent gains by Russian forces in the east as “tiny” and suggested the Russians will soon “run out of steam.”
“Our assessment is that the Russians will increasingly find it difficult to find manpower and materiel over the next few weeks,” Moore said, adding that Russian troops will “have to pause in some way” which will give the Ukrainians an opportunity to hit back.
Some analysts would no doubt disagree with Moore’s assessment, however, given the successes seen by the Russian military in Luhansk Oblast this month. Russia now controls every major population center in Luhansk, including all cities in the region, and is presently working to fortify its defenses on the border of the self-style people’s republic.
Moore’s comments also seem to suggest that British intelligence officials believe that Russia’s recent operational pause either isn’t over or that another pause will take place in the near future.
Nonetheless, Moore doesn’t think that the war will be over any time soon and warned that the pressure on European energy supplies will be felt hard this winter.
“We are in for a tough time,” he said.
Russia Says Otherwise
Either British intelligence is wrong, or Russia’s recent claim that the goals of their military campaign in Ukraine are expanding is a lie.
On Wednesday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov told RIA Novosti that the goal was no longer just to “liberate” the two self-styled people’s republics of Luhansk and Oblast. Lavrov said that the scope of the war has changed, and that Russia now intends to refocus military resources on central Ukraine.
“The geography is different now. It is not only about the DNR and LNR,” Lavrov said, referencing the two separatist regions of Ukraine.
“But also the Kherson region, the Zaporizhia region and a number of other territories,” he continued. “This process is continuing, consistently and persistently.”
Jack Buckby is a British author, counter-extremism researcher, and journalist based in New York. Reporting on the U.K., Europe, and the U.S., he works to analyze and understand left-wing and right-wing radicalization, and reports on Western governments’ approaches to the pressing issues of today. His books and research papers explore these themes and propose pragmatic solutions to our increasingly polarized society.