Given the vast frontline, it will be “very difficult” for Ukraine’s Armed Forces to push Russian troops completely out of Ukraine in 2023, chairman of U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Mark Milley said on Jan. 20.
“It doesn’t mean it can’t or won’t happen, but it will be very, very difficult,” Milley said at a press briefing following the eight Ramstein meeting.
According to Milley, the frontline will could stabilize this year, depending on the pace scope of foreign military aid to Ukraine. He added that Kyiv’s forces could do a “significant” tactical counteroffensive, aiming to liberate as much of their territory as they can.
“Nevertheless, I think this war will eventually conclude at the negotiating table – as many wars before it did,” the general said.
When asked about the casualty rate the sides are sustaining, he said the war is “very bloody,” adding that’s impossible to accurately establish figures while fighting is ongoing.
“Casualty figures are never accurate during a war,” Milley said.
“It’s over 100,000 (troops lost) on the Russian side. I’d call those significant losses. That includes regular forces, Wagner PMC, and others. They really did suffer major losses.”
Defense ministers of Ukraine’s international partners gathered at the U.S. Ramstein Air Force base in Germany on Jan. 20, discussing ongoing and future efforts to equip Kyiv’s troops with modern weapons.