Against Long Odds, Ukrainians Double Down and Hope for U.S. “Morale Boost”

2 months ago 640

BOTTOM LINE UP FRONT – In the spring of 2022, Ukraine beat back a Russian assault on the nation’s capital and punished the invaders on many fronts. Two years later, the country faces stark realities on multiple fronts: Russia is pounding the country’s infrastructure while laying the groundwork for a fresh offensive; Ukraine is preparing what some have called a “spring defensive,” its offensive capability limited to asymmetric warfare against targets in southern Russia and Russian-held Crimea; and hanging over the battlefield is the holdup of U.S. military aid, which has hampered Ukrainian air defenses and dwindled its stocks of ammunition. And while the stakes for Ukraine remain existential, a growing chorus of experts now says the stakes are profound for the U.S. and Europe as well. 

This was the background for a high-level Cipher Brief delegation that traveled to Ukraine last week – led by former U.S. commander and director of the Central Intelligence Agency General David Petraeus and including a roster of other Cipher Brief experts from the military and intelligence sectors. The group held meetings with top officials in Ukraine–from the government, the military, the parliament and the private sector–to gain a better understanding of the current state of the war, the mood in Ukraine, what may loom in the weeks and months ahead, and the stakes for the nation, the region and the world.

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