Despite the recent fall of the eastern city of Bakhmut to Russian and Wagner forces, Ukrainian officials still insist that they will “get back what’s ours,” according to top military officer, Gen. Valerii Zaluzhnyi. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is reiterating the same message claiming that “we strongly believe that we will succeed.”
“I don’t know how long it will take,” Zelensky recently told The Wall Street Journal regarding the highly-anticipated Ukrainian counter-offensive. “To be honest, it can go a variety of ways, completely different. But we are going to do it, and we are ready,” he added.
Despite Zelensky’s renewed assurances that the counter-offensive will be underway shortly, doubt is mounting among observers that a successful counter-offensive will ever materialize as it continues to be delayed. It doesn’t help that not only did Kyiv lose Bakhmut, but it has also been unable to make any major advances or substantial gains in territory. However, in his interview, Zelensky did say that “the time will soon come when we will move to active offensive actions.”
Zelensky also noted, however, that “we can’t wait for months” for more advanced weapons from the West. While Kyiv has been promised Abrams tanks from the U.S. and F-16 fighter jets from European allies, Ukrainian pilots and forces still need extensive training to be able to operate the advanced weapons, vehicles, and aircraft being provided.
The Ukrainian president did acknowledge that ” a large number o soldiers will die” in the upcoming counteroffensive, but he also reiterated that Kyiv has “stronger and more motivated” forces than Russia.
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As recently as three weeks ago, Zelensky had said that Ukraine “needs more time” in order to launch the counter-offensive. Meanwhile, his government officials have been blatantly taunting Russia.
As Kyiv continues to torment Russian troops, Zelensky has continued to apply building pressure on Washington and its Western allies to either provide solid security guarantees or to grant Ukraine entrance to NATO immediately, according to ZeroHedge.
Zelensky said on Thursday before a summit of the European Political Community in Chisinau, Moldova, that “Our future is in the European Union. Ukraine is also ready to be part of NATO. We are waiting for NATO to be ready to accept Ukraine.” He also pushed for Kyiv to receive security guarantees “now” and said that the ideal way to accomplish that was, again, to allow Ukraine immediate acceptance as a member state of NATO.
Meanwhile, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has consistently said that Kyiv will be granted NATO accession in the future but that it will not be allowed to join the alliance while the war remains ongoing.
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