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Ukraine’s ‘stunning’ loss to Russia in Kyiv and north is a big deal, military experts say

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The Pentagon said on Wednesday that Russian forces have fully withdrawn near kyiv and Chernihiv in northern Ukraine and are redeveloping in Belarus and Russia for possible possible deployment in eastern Ukraine.

“The withdrawal of Russian troops from the north around kyiv has not been a relaxing walk in the park for these guys,” a senior Pentagon official told reporters on Wednesday. “The Ukrainians were hitting them as they moved away”, taking “full” advantage of the retreat “and further exhausting these units as they left the country”.

“We are not showing Russian forces in or around kyiv or in or around Chernihiv,” Pentagon spokesman John Kirby confirmed, adding that Russian President Vladimir Putin “did not achieve any of his strategic goals. ” and that Ukraine can “absolutely” win this war.

“kyiv has been a Russian defeat for the ages,” writes Robert Burns at The Associated Press. “kyiv was the main prize” when Russia invaded, but Ukraine held it against some of Putin’s most elite troops. Putin’s eastward pivot could still yield a few wins, PA adds, but “his failure to seize kyiv will be long remembered – for the way he defied pre-war expectations and revealed startling weaknesses in an army considered one of the strongest in the world “.

Frederick Kagan, a military historian at the Institute for the Study of War, called Russia’s failure to take kyiv “staggering”. Moscow is trying to present this as a “redirection” of their “special military operation” in Ukraine, but “the reality is that Russia has been defeated in the north”, said the retired Australian. Major General Mick Ryan rated. “This is the biggest Russian military defeat since Afghanistan.”

Capturing the Ukrainian capital “was going to be difficult even if the Russian military had proven capable,” said Peter Mansoor, a retired colonel and professor of military history at Ohio State University. PA. “It proved completely incapable of conducting modern armored warfare.”

Russia sadly left behind horrific scenes of destruction and death in its retreat, and Ukraine says it must clear Russian mines and unexploded ordnance. And “kyiv is still under threat,” the senior Pentagon official said. “It’s not like Kyiv is somehow immune to further attacks.”

“Another advance in the north is highly unlikely,” Ryan predicted. But Russia is likely to try to surround and crush Ukraine’s battle-hardened forces in the eastern Donbass region now, and that’s a threat Ukraine needs to take seriously.

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Ukraine’s ‘stunning’ loss to Russia in Kyiv and north is a big deal, military experts say

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