How the battle between Russia and Ukraine might end

How the battle between Russia and Ukraine might end

Vladimir Putin has spent the past week intensifying his war in Ukraine through land grabs, the deployment of tens of thousands of conscripts to the front lines, and the threat of a nuclear strike against anyone who dares to stand in his way.

The basic fact is that Russia is losing the fight, and he is aware of this.Ukrainian troops, having routed Russian troops to the east of Kharkiv last month, are continuing to push east - taking the city of Lyman at the weekend and pushing into Luhansk oblast in the last 24 hours

The dictator is despondent. His army is in ruins, his battle preparations have been destroyed, he is depleting his monetary reserves at an unsustainable rate, and winter is approaching. In the meantime, the Ukrainian army continues to march throughout the country, providing Kyiv with a feasible road to victory. Which begs the question: what will occur if Russia loses?

According to Alp Sevimlisoy, a millennial fellow at the think tank Atlantic Council who talked with MailOnline, this would result in Putin’s ouster, Russia’s disintegration, and a confrontation between NATO and China over the spoils.

The West must start planning for this inevitability immediately, he argues, or else it will allow Beijing to expand its influence in regions such as Siberia, central Asia, Africa, and South America, where it already has a foothold but will see chances as Russian dominance declines.

“We must advance into voids, strive to impose influence, and eventually confront the People’s Republic of China.” China is a superpower with worldwide connections, and we must battle them effectively,’ he said.

Ukrainian forces, having defeated Russian forces to the east of Kharkiv last month, continue to advance east, capturing the city of Lyman over the weekend and advancing into the Luhansk oblast in the last twenty-four hours.

Ukraine is also gaining ground in the south, breaking through Russian defense lines on the Dnipro River and advancing on the city from the west, threatening Putin’s forces with a significant retreat.

Putin has attempted to stem the rot by annexing territories, conscripting hundreds of thousands of soldiers, and threatening nuclear war, but MailOnline has learned from an expert that he fears removal if NATO and China end up in a face-off.

When Putin originally initiated his “special military operation” in February, such a scenario seemed unimaginable.

Few believed success was feasible for Ukraine; they were outnumbered, outgunned, and surrounded on three sides by the entire weight of the Russian military, then reckoned to be second only to the United States. It may take days, weeks, or even months, but there was little doubt that Kiev would finally fall.

Putin and his generals then made a series of catastrophic miscalculations. Inadequate preparation and planning, corruption that had rotted Russia’s military supplies from the inside out, and low unit morale all contributed to Ukraine gaining the initiative, which its leaders exploited ruthlessly.Ukraine is also making gains in the south, breaking through Russian defensive lines on the Dnipro River and pushing towards the city itself from the west, threatening Putin's forces with a major retreat

Alp Sevimlisoy, a fellow at the Atlantic Council think tank, is of the opinion that Putin would not survive a defeat, and that Russia may begin to implode as a result.

The fast advance on Kyiv that Putin had counted on to destroy the regime and grant him control of the country within days slowed, then stopped, and ultimately resulted in a ‘goodwill gesture’ – also known as a full-scale retreat – as the Kremlin shifted its focus to ‘liberating’ the Donbas.Ukrainian troops are filmed ambushing Russian armoured vehicles using anti-tank launchers in Donetsk, leaving at least one of them destroyed

Problems remained despite the fact that the large open expanses of the eastern industrial heartland of Ukraine were infinitely more suited to Russian tactics (destructive artillery bombardments followed by slow troop and tank movements). Once more, the advance slowed and finally essentially stopped.

Then, Ukraine delivered a devastating one-two punch: an assault on Kherson in the south that drew in Russian soldiers, followed by a hook east out of Kharkiv that collapsed Russian lines, prompted a full-scale retreat, and returned thousands of square kilometres to Kyiv’s control within days.Putin has tried to stem the rot by annexing regions, conscripting hundreds of thousands of soldiers and threatening nuclear war - but an expert has told MailOnline he faces being deposed with NATO ended up in a face-off with China

Russia has been left reeling. Its military is not yet on the canvas, but it has taken a hard blow and its knees are beginning to crumble. With a few more, a knockout is likely.

Just after Ukraine launched its Kharkiv counterattack, Mr. Sevimlisoy told MailOnline, “The Ukrainians have momentum; they are winning.” This confrontation, however, will have repercussions throughout Russia and the region, and neither side will just walk away and say, ‘That’s it.’

He predicts that Russia’s influence would wane not only in South America and Africa, where it has historically sent mercenaries, provided loans, and constructed infrastructure, but also in ex-Soviet satellite republics such as Kazakhstan, Georgia, and Armenia.

And Russia itself may succumb to internal strife, with rebellious regions attempting to break away from Moscow’s grip while power brokers within the Kremlin compete for Putin’s crown.

Mr. Sevimlisoy feels he has almost no chance of surviving a defeat in Ukraine, despite the fact that the possibility of a Putin-free Russia once appeared like a pipe dream.

Mr. Sevimlisoy stated, “I see no future for Putin [if he loses the conflict].” “How do you return to your people in light of this?” How can you return to the international stage after having militarized food and energy?

 

 

 

As the offensive in the south of Ukraine proceeds, a Russian rocket strikes a Humvee used by Ukrainian special troops. According to Telegram sources, all troops survived the engagement.

Ukrainian special forces are depicted marching in the south of the country amid claims of a breach in Russian lines that may have forced Putin’s troops back more than 16 kilometers.

Ukrainian tanks begin fire on Russian positions in Kherson, as part of a significant offensive in the region aimed at recapturing the city from Russia – a big setback for Putin’s invasion.

 

 

 

In Donetsk, Ukrainian troops are captured ambushing Russian armored vehicles with anti-tank launchers, destroying at least one of them.

The wreckage of a Russian Tigr armored vehicle is abandoned on a wooded road in Donetsk (bottom center) as others run (top) in response to a Ukrainian ambush.

 

 

 

He is not alone in his opinion. In the weeks following Ukraine’s counterattack, experts have openly questioned whether Putin’s days are numbered. Professor Grigory Yudin predicted as much to Canada’s CBC, ex-British army officer Richard Kemp pondered the idea in The Telegraph, and Foreign Affairs magazine also discussed the possibility.

Mr. Sevimlisoy believes that Putin’s resignation would set off all manner of internecine conflict within Russia, with different branches of the military turning on one another, regions seeking independence, and ex-Soviet satellite governments searching for allies far from Moscow.

He stated, “Russia’s defeat in Ukraine is a failure of statecraft.” ‘Groups will assert, “This is not how we should be ruled.” The military will declare the campaign unsuccessful.

I believe the collapse will be precipitated by infighting among the intelligence agencies and military, and forces within Russia will use the chance to declare, “We can govern ourselves better, and we have sufficient international support to pursue independence.” We must absolutely support that.

However, there is no assurance that Putin’s successor will be less severe. Many feel that Sergey Naryshkin, the head of the foreign intelligence service, who is far more hawkish than Putin with regard to the West, is Putin’s successor apparent.

Mr. Sevimlisoy thinks that this means NATO’s aim will be to ‘contain Russia and the Russian armed forces,’ but also to ‘contain China.’

Russian influence would diminish in ex-Soviet satellite republics such as Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, and Kyrgyzstan, as well as in Africa and South America, where Putin has propped up despotic governments with soldiers, inexpensive loans, and commercial deals.

NATO must be competitive in all of these domains or risk losing them to Beijing’s influence.

There are already indications that rot is beginning to set in. Kazakhstan, a longtime ally of Moscow, has adopted an increasingly confrontational stance towards Moscow, accepting more than 100,000 Russian men who escaped Putin’s draft and emphasizing that territorial integrity must be preserved, without mentioning Ukraine.

Azerbaijan and Armenia, another ally of Moscow, resumed hostilities a few weeks ago as Moscow attempted to shore up its western flank against the Ukrainians, with Armenia being forced to acknowledge that Putin would not help defend its territory despite the fact that the two countries had a security agreement.

And other nations that have hitherto provided Russia with tacit backing are beginning to express worry.

A few days ago, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi asked Moscow not to allow the Ukraine conflict to “spill over” and to “defend the legitimate rights and interests of developing nations.”

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi, having first attempted to maintain a cautious middle ground on Ukraine, offered an even louder criticism, warning the Kremlin, “Today’s era is not one of war”

Recep Tayyip Erdogan also stated that he had spoken with Putin during the recent summit in Uzbekistan, and that he believes ‘he wants to terminate this as quickly as possible’ since ‘the current state of affairs is highly troublesome.

Ruined Russian tanks in a vehicle graveyard in Izium, which was just retaken by Ukrainian forces in a rapid offensive that routed Putin’s men and put Ukraine on the offensive.

Before being dispatched to the frontlines, Russian reservists who have been recruited to fight in Ukraine shoot a machine gun on a training range in the Rostov region.

A Russian reservist who was mobilized by Putin practise firing a heavy machine gun in the Rostov region prior to being sent into battle.

In Kharkiv oblast, destroyed Russian armored vehicles abandoned by Putin’s troops when they fled the city of Izium.

And Erdogan’s position could be crucial to ending the war, according to Mr. Sevimlisoy, because Turkey and Ukraine would be essential to controlling the Kremlin after defeat.

“Russia will have to accept the truth that it is no longer a great power, but rather a state – a Black Sea state whose system nobody wishes to replicate,” he stated. The dominance of this region will ultimately rest with Turkey, as we are currently observing.

Mr. Sevimlisoy believes that Turkey, armed with the most advanced US fighter jets and hypersonic missiles, coupled with a Ukrainian military capable of combating Russia, will be the key to Western influence in the area and throughout central Asia.

This is vital, he adds, because it will position NATO and the West to compete effectively with Beijing.A Russian rocket slams into a Ukrainian special forces Humvee somewhere in Ukraine as Kyiv's offensive in the south continues. According to reports on Telegram, all troops survived the encounter

“In each location where Russian power is waning, we must form regional partnerships and establish permanent presences,” he stated.

“We must advance into voids, strive to impose influence, and eventually confront the People’s Republic of China.”

China is a global superpower, and we must counteract them successfully.Ukrainian special forces troops are pictured advancing across the south of Ukraine amid reports of a breakthrough in Russian lines that may have pushed Putin's men back more than 10 miles

We have considerably more military experience within NATO than the Chinese, which is to our benefit, but we must have boots on the ground in these regions so that when the time comes to face them – and it will – we’re not playing catch-up.

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