Russia ‘rapidly exhausting’ weapons Putin needs in Ukraine: general
A former top US general has said Moscow and Russian President Vladimir Putin are “rapidly running out” of weapons during the ongoing invasion of Ukraine.
Mark Hertling is a retired United States Army Lieutenant General who was previously the Commanding General of the European Branch of the Army. Since retiring a decade ago, Hertling has become prolific as an analyst, appearing on various news programs to discuss military issues, becoming particularly outspoken last year amid its neighbor’s invasion of Eastern Europe by Russia.
On Friday, Hertling appeared on CNN where host Abby Phillip asked him about Russia’s recent attempts to “solidify” partnerships with potential allied nations. The retired general said Putin was likely very keen on establishing relations with countries like Iran and China due to the dwindling supply of arms and ammunition to his army in Ukraine.
“The truth of the matter is [that] Russia is trying to win partners with different countries, which have different types of ammunition that they can help supply this war,” Hertling said. “And I think Mr. Putin realizes that he is quickly running out of the types of ammunition he needs to continue this fight.”
The conversation with Hertling began with Phillip referring to recent reports that China is stepping up political cooperation with Russia. Even so, Hertling said the relationship was unlikely to progress to the point of China providing military aid to Russia, in part because of the latter’s increasingly poor image on the world stage.
“Yes, Mr. Putin is trying to cement his partnership with President Xi. But I think President Xi realized long ago that this mission makes Russia and Mr. Putin a pariah on the world stage. “, said Hertling. “They promised cooperation, political cooperation in the official statement. But as you saw, Mr. Putin was a bit insistent saying, hey, we want military cooperation.”
He continued: “I’m sure there was an attempt to exchange power sources for some type of ammunition or military equipment back from China. I’m not sure Mr. Putin will get that of the alpha male in this particular relationship. . Mr. Putin is seen as the lesser of the two partners in this new China/Russia relationship.”
Throughout the invasion of Ukraine, Iran has seemingly been Russia’s most important ally, with Iranian drones widely used by the Russian military to carry out strikes on the war-torn country. . On Friday, the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported that another 16 Iranian Shahed-136 drones had been shot down the previous night over the capital Kyiv and other parts of the country.
Hertling noted that, to some extent, the United States is limited in what it can do against the transfer of equipment between allied nations, although he added that additional sanctions could be imposed against Iran. .
“But remember, we also have relations with Iran,” Hertling said. “We are trying to get certain things from them in terms of improving relations. So it will be very difficult to do that.”
Newsweek contacted foreign policy analysts for comment.