Putin plans to take Kharkiv, Odesa after announced mobilization, says Bloomberg
Russian dictator Vladimir Putin (Photo:Pool via REUTERS)
The Kremlin remains committed to its initial aim of dismembering Ukraine and taking over much of its territory as possible, even as the chances of attaining that goal seem increasingly remote, the Bloomberg news agency reported on Sept. 27, with reference to officials and sources in the Kremlin.
Bloomberg writes that some people close to the Kremlin think that after Russian dictator Vladimir Putin’s announced “partial mobilization,” Russia will ultimately be able to regain the initiative and drive further into Ukraine, possibly taking key cities including Kharkiv and Odesa – goals that it has been unable to achieve thus far..
That would leave Ukraine only a rump of its pre-war self, Kremlin sources claim.
“While that seems far-fetched given Kyiv’s recent successes on the battlefield, Russian officials are confident their forces can fight Ukraine to a standstill and force some kind of a settlement that confirms at least some of their gains,” Bloomberg wrote.
The agency noted that there’s little sign that 300,000 mobilized troops — the number stated by Russian defense minister Sergei Shoigu as the goal for mobilization — will be able to turn things around on the battlefield, given that at least some number of them are receiving minimal to no training and equipment
Military analysts say they are likely to be enough only to further slow Ukraine’s advances.
At the same time, Putin is still counting on gas blackmail and nuclear threats to force Europe to lessen its support of Ukraine, Bloomberg notes.
He also plans to address both Russian houses of parliament on Sept. 30, according to people familiar with the preparations, which is believed to be when he announces the annexation of occupied Ukrainian territories.
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