Espreso. Global

Militarily, it’s not a big loss: NATO Admiral Bauer on Ukraine's tactical withdrawal from Avdiivka

18 February, 2024 Sunday
16:30

Chairman of the NATO Military Committee, Lieutenant Admiral of the Royal Netherlands Navy Rob Bauer said that from a military point of view, Russian troops did not gain Avdiivka, but a few hundred metres of territory

He said this in a comment to Foreign Policy.

"Militarily, it’s not a big loss. They destroyed the whole infrastructure. So you don’t have a city. You have another couple of hundred meters,” he said on Russia’s territorial gains.

The outlet notes that Russia captured Avdiivka at the cost of huge losses, while having unlimited ammunition and air dominance. However, it is far from winning the war.

Foreign Policy, citing "more than a dozen European defense officials and experts," writes that the situation on the battlefield is serious, but not to the extent that Ukraine is facing collapse or even major setbacks on the front.

"Pessimists lose wars. Is it difficult for Ukraine? Yes. If you would have asked in 1942 in Europe, ‘How is the war going?’ I don’t think there were a lot of people that were overly optimistic. We still won," Bauer said.

This opinion is shared by Christopher Skaluba, a former employee of the US Department of Defence and now an analyst at the Atlantic Council. According to him, "I don’t think the sky is falling just yet".

"The Russians don’t seem to be going away, but the Ukrainians aren’t either," Skaluba said.

  • To avoid encirclement and save lives, the Ukrainian Defence Forces command decided on February 17 to withdraw units from Avdiivka and move to defend more favourable positions.
  • Ukrainian Defence Minister Rustem Umerov said that the decision to withdraw from Avdiivka was right and Ukrainian soldiers are in need of weapons and equipment.
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