Ukraine has a better chance to counterattack in winter than spring, contrary to the assessment of US officials, the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) said.
Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines said on December 3 that the pace of fighting in Ukraine would slow down over the next few winter months. “We’re seeing that conflict slow down and this could continue in the coming months,” Haines said.
According to her, both the Ukrainian and Russian militaries are looking to resupply and re-equip to plan a counter-offensive after winter, and then Kiev will have a greater advantage.
However, the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) said that Haines misjudged the situation, not taking into account the evidence that current conditions on the ground are conducive to a new counterattack and Ukrainian forces. will catch the counterattack very quickly after the previous steps.
Last month, the Ukrainian army regained control of the southern city of Kherson, half a year after it was held by Russia. Along Kherson, Ukraine also regained more than 40 towns, while Russia withdrew about 30,000 troops and military equipment from the city.
“Ukraine has kept the initiative since August and has launched counter-attacks. Ukraine recaptured most of Kharkov in September, and Kherson city in November and is facilitating more counter-attacks in other areas. elsewhere during winter,” ISW commented.
The organization also said that the importance of winter should not be underestimated in the Ukrainian war. According to ISW, winter is a favorable time for Ukraine to counter-attack and continue to advance, instead of spring when the ground becomes muddy, making it difficult for military vehicles to move.
“Winter is often the most favorable season for a mechanized war in Ukraine, where spring is seen as a nightmare for fighting in Ukraine,” the ISW said.
As a result, the ISW believes that allies and partners can help Ukraine launch landmark large-scale counter-attacks this winter. In contrast, ISW warned, if this opportunity is missed, Ukraine will lose its offensive momentum until March 2023.
The Russia-Ukraine conflict has entered its 10th month and continues to show signs of climbing. Kiev started a strong counterattack in August and regained control of many cities and villages. However, many argue that maintaining the counter-attack momentum in the winter will be a huge challenge for Ukraine because half of the energy infrastructure has been destroyed, which can disrupt military logistics activities. the. Moreover, the winter could challenge the West’s ability to aid Ukraine with arms as the countries deal with energy supply strains.