Espreso. Global

Ukraine's defensive efforts amidst new Russian threats – NYT

23 April, 2024 Tuesday
17:08

As Russia gears up for a new significant offensive, Ukraine faces the daunting challenge of holding its ground with fortified defenses, marking a stark departure from the days of swift battlefield maneuvers

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The New York Times dwells on the topic in a new article

In southern Ukraine, a formidable defensive line stretches over 27 miles, a recent development prompted by Russia's new threat. Now, it's Ukraine's turn to fortify positions, with trenches, ditches, and obstacles aiming to impede Russian advances.

Following a failed counteroffensive and prolonged battles against Russian forces, Ukrainian troops are fatigued and resources depleted.

To bolster its defense, Ukraine plans to replenish its forces through conscription and expects support from European allies and the U.S., which recently approved a substantial military aid package.

However, the immediate challenge remains time; training new troops and receiving equipment will take months.

Experts suggest Ukraine may not launch a major counteroffensive this year, focusing instead on rebuilding its forces and thwarting Russian assaults.

Meanwhile, Ukraine invests heavily in fortifications, allocating $800 million for constructing defenses along 600 miles of the frontline. These include anti-tank ditches, concrete barriers (“dragon’s teeth”), and infantry trenches, visible through satellite imagery.

Ukraine's defense strategy aims to make ground advances costly for Russia, particularly in urban areas like Kurakhove, a target for Russian incursions.

Despite efforts to fortify, challenges persist, with depleted ranks and ongoing clashes testing Ukraine's defensive capabilities.

Military analysts stress the difficulty in replicating past defenses, urging Ukraine to adapt swiftly amidst the evolving conflict dynamics.

“Ukraine now needs to build a series of defensive positions whilst in contact — which is difficult,” said James Rands, a military analyst with Janes, a defense intelligence company in London. 
 

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