Missiles Hit Mykolaiv as Russia Prepares to Renew Ground Assault

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Russia seeks to push toward Odessa from eastern areas under its control – early Sunday in the second rocket attack there in three days. Russia also appears set to resume its ground offensive in southern and eastern Ukraine, following what analysts called a pause for troops to regroup. Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu told troops on Saturday to intensify attacks “in all operational sectors” of Ukraine, while Ukrainian officials said there was shelling “along the entire front line.”

Regional governors said Russian missile strikes in Kharkiv and Dnipropetrovsk on Saturday killed five people, and four others were hospitalized. In the eastern Luhansk region, the governor said two towns were still in Ukrainian hands and fighting was ongoing Sunday morning. Russia claimed earlier this month to have control of the entire region, now a key objective in the invasion of Ukraine.

Meanwhile, Adm. Sir Tony Radakin, chief of Britain’s Armed Forces, said 50,000 Russian soldiers have either died or been injured in Ukraine – resulting in a significant loss of land combat effectiveness.

Radakin, who traveled to Ukraine last week to meet with his Ukrainian counterpart, told the BBC on Sunday that Ukrainian military officials “are absolutely clear that they plan to restore the whole of their territory.”

“They see a Russia that is struggling – a Russia that we assess has lost more than 30 percent of its land combat effectiveness,” Radakin said. “What that actually means is 50,000 Russian soldiers that have either died or been injured in this conflict, nearly 1,700 Russian tanks destroyed, nearly 4,000 armored fighting vehicles that belong to Russia destroyed.”

Russia has been making gains in the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine, renewing attacks against the east and the south of the country after a period of relative quiet that analysts called an “operational pause” for Russian troops to rest and regroup before resuming their ground offensive.

Russia has claimed control of Luhansk, one of two provinces that make up Donbas, and is attacking the other, Donetsk.

But the Donbas region is “less than 10 percent of the territory of Ukraine, and we’re approaching 150 days [of the war], and Russia is struggling to take that territory,” Radakin said Sunday, framing this as one of several signs that Russia’s Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine has not gone as Moscow planned.

Russia hoped “to take the whole of Ukraine,” “to take the cities in the first 30 days” and to “create fractures and to apply pressure to NATO,” Radakin said. It “is failing in all of those ambitions,” he said. “Russia is a more diminished nation than it was at the beginning of February. And that’s what Ukraine is seeing.”

When asked how Ukraine might hope to regain control over Crimea, which it lost to Russian forces and their separatist allies in 2014, Radakin said officials in Kyiv view the full restoration of Ukrainian territory as “a long-term ambition.”

In other news, a Ukrainian cargo plane carrying mines crashed in northern Greece, killing all eight Ukrainian crew members onboard. Amid speculation that the shipment might be bound for Ukraine, Serbia’s defense minister said the mines were being sent to Bangladesh.

Also, a U.S. Air Force veteran living in Ukraine has been detained by pro-Russian separatists, his brother said, becoming at least the third American to be captured in Ukraine since the start of the war.

(c) 2022, The Washington Post · Bryan Pietsch, Julian Duplain, Annabelle Timsit 


  1. ZELENSKYY has to resign and leave. Z has destryoed the wholer Ukraine . Gas is up in$ and bread and Matza will skyrocket. #DefundUkraine#
    End the war, Z.

    Biden has us in a War. Stop the WAR.


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