Ukraine: Rob Rinder grills Ben Wallace over Priti Patel
We use your sign-up to provide content in ways you’ve consented to and to improve our understanding of you. This may include adverts from us and 3rd parties based on our understanding. You can unsubscribe at any time. More info
For almost a week, Ukrainians have mobilised to defend their country against Vladimir Putin’s invasion. Ukraine may have managed to slow the Russian advances, but as Russia launches aggressive airstrikes on Kharkiv and continues to surround Kyiv, what is next for the Ukraine-Russia war?
Just six days ago, Mr Putin ordered “a special military operation” where Russian troops were to invade Ukraine and the world watched in horror as missiles fell in the capital city of Kyiv.
Terrified citizens sought cover in underground shelters, while President Volodymyr Zelensky resolved Ukrainians would fight back against Russian invaders, calling on NATO and the West to support Ukraine.
However if Mr Putin thought the Ukrainian fightback would be short-lived, and the West would want to stand well back, he could not have anticipated the response.
The European Union, United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Japan, New Zealand and Taiwan all responded by putting economic sanctions on Russia, targeting banks and oil companies in particular.
Since then, the UN estimates almost 700,000 Ukrainians have fled the conflict – with thousands more still waiting to cross borders – while men aged 18 to 60 have been ordered to stay and fight Russian forces.
In President Joe Biden’s State of the Union address today, he said: “Six days ago, Russia’s Vladimir Putin sought to shake the very foundations of the free world.
“Thinking he could make it bend to his menacing ways, but he badly miscalculated. He thought he could roll into Ukraine and the world would roll over.
“Instead, he was met with a wall of strength he never anticipated or imagined. He met the Ukrainian people.”
For almost a week now, Ukraine has fought back against Russian forces, but how long can they hold their ground against the Russian assault?
Ukraine: What happens next?
CBS reported a US official had estimated Kyiv could be surrounded by Russian forces within one week.
After the forces have surrounded the Ukrainian capital, the U.S. assessed Kyiv could be seized within four to six weeks.
While all eyes are on Kyiv, Ukraine’s second-biggest city Kharkiv is also being heavily hit by missile strikes.
In a video address earlier this morning, President Zelensky warned Russia wanted to “erase” Ukraine and its history, while praising the “resilience” of the Ukrainian people.
Russian soldier sobs humiliated by Ukrainians in video [UPDATE]
Lukashenko plans Moldova invasion as Belarus President releases plans [INSIGHT]
Fighting for survival, babies in the bunker [ANALYSIS]
This morning the British Defence Secretary Ben Wallace rejected the idea of imposing a no-fly zone over Ukraine, but warned Putin could be changing his tactics.
Speaking to BBC Breakfast, Mr Wallace said: “The Russians are considerably behind their schedule by days not hours, and that leads to stresses on their logistical supply chains.
“That’s why you have seen some of these columns fairly grind to a halt. They have also been surprised by the strength of the Ukrainian resistance.”
Mr Wallace added in his view there were signs of “low morale” amongst Russian troops, but warned: “That doesn’t take away from the fact you have a very ruthless Russian armed forces leadership and a president who seems to know no limit to how much violence they will use to achieve their aims.”
Analysing Russia’s military playbook based on past events, Wallace suggested sieges of cities and ‘carpet-bombing’ – the indiscriminate heavy bombing of cities – before taking over what’s left of the city, could be Russia’s plan.
Despite the US intelligence suggesting Kyiv could fall to the Russians within weeks, this is unlikely to draw an end to the conflict.
Consensus is that despite Russia’s aggressive onslaught, occupying Ukraine is unlikely and while Putin’s forces may move in on cities and territories they are unlikely to seize control.
UK Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said she believes the war in Ukraine could last for 10 years.
In the US, lawmakers in the Capitol were briefed the war could last for 10, 15 or even 20 years.
Source: Read Full Article