Washington Post Finds Ukrainian Military Has Been Chewed Up
March 14, 2023, 2022 (EIRNS)—The news from the battle front in Ukraine is indeed desperate, but the actual news is that the Washington Post reported it yesterday. And, further, a Ukrainian battalion commander put himself on the line, going public with the sorry state of affairs.
A battalion commander of Ukraine’s 46th Air Assault Brigade, a lieutenant colonel, “consented to having his photograph taken and said he understood he could face personal blowback for giving a frank assessment.....” (His photograph, along with his call name, “Kupol,” make him unmistakable to those he criticized in Kiev.) In Kupol’s one year of command of some 500 soldiers, he reports, according to the Post, that “roughly 100 were killed in action and another 400 wounded, leading to complete turnover. Kupol said he was the sole military professional in the battalion....”
The Post then quotes Colonel “Kupol”: “I get 100 new soldiers. They don’t give me any time to prepare them. They say, ‘Take them into the battle.’ They just drop everything and run. That’s it.” Their training is completely inadequate, so “our instructors need to be sent over there into the trenches. Because they failed in their task.” Further, Kiev needs to be less involved in public relations and more involved in systematic training: “It’s like all we do is give interviews and tell people that we’ve already won, just a little bit further away, two weeks, and we’ll win.”
Less identifiable is another Post source, a “senior Ukrainian government official,” who reported, “We don’t have the people or weapons.” A counteroffensive is not possible: “If you have more resources, you more actively attack. If you have fewer resources, you defend more. We’re going to defend. That’s why if you ask me personally, I don’t believe in a big counteroffensive for us. I’d like to believe in it, but I’m looking at the resources and asking, ‘With what?’ ” He went on to refer to the number of tanks promised to Kiev by the U.S. and its allies as “symbolic.”
The Washington Post article uses the figure of about 120,000 Ukrainian casualties, provided by a German government estimate, in describing the drastic change “in the profile of the military, replacing the most seasoned Ukrainian troops, with the arrival of inexperienced draftees,” a change that has severely “degraded” Ukraine’s military capacity over the last year.