One month after the full-scale aggression began, Russia failed to defeat Ukraine and overthrow the Zelensky government, bringing a pro-Russian puppet government to power in the country’s capital, Kiev.

Russia’s plan was to launch simultaneous air and ground attacks on major Ukrainian cities. Russia had the idea that the resistance of the Ukrainians would be chaotic and light. And in a few days, Russian troops will be able to occupy the whole country, including the capital Kiev.

But instead the Ukrainian regular army and the volunteer and reserve forces combined to form an orderly and intense resistance. Russia has also failed in its attempts to assassinate or abduct key Ukrainian national and local government leaders, including President Volodymyr Zelensky.

During the first months of the operation, the morale of the Russian troops was generally low, and the strategic coordination between the various Russian air, land and naval forces was very weak.

As a result of this failure, Russian forces were able to occupy only a small area in the north, around Kiev, in the northeast around Kharkiv and Sumi, and in the southwest around the town of Mykolaiv.

Rather, Russia has had more success in Donbass in the east and in the vicinity of Melitopol and Mariupol in the southeast. But despite weeks of continuous bombardment and onslaught, they still have not been able to capture Mariupol.

In return for these limited gains, Russia has lost a large amount of military equipment. Russia has lost more than 1,600 warships; It has more than 260 main battle tanks, 15 fixed-wing aircraft and 35 helicopters. It is difficult to estimate the exact number of Russian military casualties. But NATO officials say Russia has lost 8,000 to 15,000 troops. In addition, about 15-25 thousand Russian soldiers have been captured, wounded or missing.

Whatever the exact extent of Russia’s losses, it is still unknown to all parties. However, US officials estimate that Russia has lost more than 10 percent of the 190,000 troops it has amassed on the Ukrainian border in the eight months leading up to the February 24 invasion of Ukraine.

Russia’s most significant failure is its failure to supply supplies. Russia has completely failed to provide adequate food, fuel, ammunition and medicine to Russian forces fighting around Kiev, Kharkiv, Donbass, Mariupol and the Mykolive / Kryvyi Rih.

As a result, Russian troops have systematically abandoned their vehicles and equipment. More than 600 Russian military vehicles have been abandoned and destroyed or taken over by Ukrainian forces. Recent U.S. intelligence reports suggest that Russian troops were frozen in the cold after a snowstorm in the vicinity of Mykolaiv and in northern areas near Kiev and Kharkiv. The Russian military has also lost at least 550 supply trucks in a series of Ukrainian attacks on its supply lines.

As a result of this catastrophe, Russia has been forced to adopt a series of urban blockades instead of occupying the capital Kyiv and trying to defeat the whole of Ukraine.

Since the logistical system and general combat capabilities of the Russian forces are not able to maintain a normal pace throughout Ukraine, the Russian forces are now focusing exclusively on the eastern part of Ukraine and the city of Mariupol.

The weeks of bombings in the main port city of Mariupol, as well as in Kharkiv, Sumi and Chernihiv, have failed to persuade Ukrainian forces to surrender. And Russian troops have suffered heavy casualties as they tried to enter the cities. As a result, Russian forces have intensified their bombardment of Mariupol, cutting off food and water supplies to the city and sending large numbers of troops to occupy the wreckage after starving the city.

Mariupol was besieged early in the war. As a result, the city’s fighters could not collect dry food, medicine and ammunition to withstand the long siege. As such, it also testifies to the extraordinary courage and resilience of the Ukrainian defense forces. They are still holding Russian forces in the city center, a month later.

However, Russia has made it a point to capture Mariupol first, albeit with all its might. Because through this they will get the first big victory and then they will be able to send their forces and supplies elsewhere. The Russian expedition will then proceed to Donbass and finally east and northeast to Kharkiv.

Russia’s experience in Grozny, Chechnya in the 1990s, and in Syria’s Homs and Aleppo in the mid-2010s, shows that continuous blockades are a brutal but effective way to occupy a city. It also creates lasting hatred among the people. And long-term political success in the conquered area makes it impossible until the entire population is completely expelled or killed.

This new Russian strategy poses a great challenge to Ukraine. The Ukrainian army lacks heavily equipped and well-equipped forces to carry out large-scale counter-attacks against a strong Russian position. Ukraine has taken precautions to keep its own casualty figures and casualties low. Undoubtedly, thousands of Ukrainian soldiers were killed and wounded. At least 500 warships were destroyed. Despite the damage and the lack of heavy firearms, the Ukrainians must maintain pressure on Russia’s advanced positions in areas of the country where Russian troops have lost momentum.

If they could bypass Russian front-line units and cut off their supply routes with numerous infantry light infantry equipped with anti-tank missiles, they could either force those units to return to their starting positions or force Russia into full force on Mariopole and Donbass. Be able to refrain from trying to concentrate. Because Russia must then focus on strengthening its other threats.

Successful local counter-attacks last week in Mykolive in the southwest and Makarov in the northwest indicate that Ukraine is now trying to do just that. Ukraine is trying to weaken Russian forces by forcing them to focus on different fronts.

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