Who will prevail in the Ukraine war during the winter Experts answer

Who will prevail in the Ukraine war during the winter Experts answer

As winter approaches in Ukraine, there are growing fears on both sides of the conflict that mud, snow and cold will complicate the conduct of military operations in the coming months.

The Ukrainian army is launching an offensive to retake the territories controlled by Moscow, and does not want to stop its advance to take advantage of its last gains before winter arrives.

That prompted US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin last week to say that “winter is always a challenge in terms of fighting,” but he expected Ukraine to continue to do everything possible during the winter to regain territory and remain effective on the battlefield.

This is also expressed by Mark kansyan from the Center for Strategic and International Studies, who at the same time recalls that the war began in the middle of winter in February, and therefore the belligerents have experience in this kind of fighting.

“I think we will soon see a slowdown when the mud starts to appear,”kansyan said. He added that after that “the fighting will resume during the winter”, but perhaps it will not be at the level it was in the days of awakening.

Indeed, it will not be easy to fight at the height of winter, the soldiers will feel cold, it will be difficult to maintain their weapons and mechanisms to stay in good condition, and the snow will cover the mines, making them harder to detect.

Warm clothes

It is difficult to “stay on the battlefield, maintain equipment (…) and operate mechanisms when temperatures drop,”says Michael O’hanlon of the Brookings research center. “These facts do not prevent the possibility of fighting, but they certainly limit it,” he said.

Kanssian, a former U.S. Marine Corps general, believes the fighting could be concentrated around villages because of the shelters they provide for the forces they control.

The equipment provided by the allies provides Ukrainian troops with warm clothes and special equipment for extreme cold, which makes Ukraine superior to Russia, which has been facing logistical problems since the beginning of the war.

Canada promised to provide 500 thousand items of winter clothing, including jackets, trousers, boots and gloves, while Lithuania is fully equipping 25 thousand Ukrainian servicemen for the winter.

Germany provided hundreds of thousands of hats, jackets and trousers to Kiev. The United States and Britain have also delivered winter clothing in their recent military aid to Ukraine.

Nevertheless, it is important for the Ukrainian troops to move quickly after the recent successes on the battlefield, not only because of the approaching winter, but because the mobilization of troops in Russia is beginning to bear fruit with the arrival of new troops on the battlefield.

Psychological factor

According to kansyan, Moscow is betting that”mobilization and the weather will lead to the stabilization of the front lines”.

According to kansyan, Russia believes that it can prolong the war in the hope that European support for Ukraine will diminish as energy prices rise and temperatures drop, considering that this is a strategy that will fail.

“Ukrainians are facing adversities ( … ), making sacrifices, but they are far from collapsing, and I don’t think anyone expects a collapse of Ukrainian morale,”kansyan said.

The flexibility shown by the Ukrainian population could help the country’s army to fight this winter, “said Jan Gentile, a military historian at the RAND Corporation.

“They consider that they are fighting for their existence that they are demonstrating combat power, and this apparently does not apply to Russian troops,”he said. “A psychological factor that can (…) help to endure cold and bad weather,”he emphasized.

Source: French

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