Ukraine is now entering the penultimate, offensive stage of the war, the Secretary of Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council, Oleksiy Danilov, wrote on Facebook on Jan. 6.
He said the world was changing its view of Russia’s full-scale war against Ukraine – “from a guerrilla movement, to (fighting for) victory.”
Danilov divided the war into four stages and noted the main weapons that the allies were supplying to Ukraine for each stage:
- January 2022 – guerrilla war (the NLAW anti-tank missiles, the Stinger anti-aircraft missiles, the Javelin anti-tank missiles);
- June 2022 – defensive and counteroffensive war (the HIMARS multiple launch rocket system, the M777 howitzer, the Harpoon missiles, the GMLRS projectiles, Excalibur, the PzH 2000 self-propelled gun, the IRIS self-propelled gun, the CAESAR self-propelled howitzer, the Krab self-propelled howitzer;
- 2023 – offensive war (the Bradley and Marder infantry fighting vehicles, the Bastion armored personnel carrier, the AMX-10 RC armored vehicles or “wheeled tanks,” the Patriot air defense system, “and much more, less public and not public at all.”
According to the official, the fourth stage will be a “war of justice and retribution.”
Recent days have seen Ukraine’s allies for the first time promise to supply Ukraine with weapons of the types Ukraine’s generals say they need to defeat Russia and liberate all of Ukraine’s territory.
Following talks between the Ukrainian and French presidents Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Emmanuel Macron on Jan. 4, France agreed to provide Ukraine with AMX-10RC armored vehicles, which are sometimes classified as wheeled tanks – the first instance of armored vehicles of this type being transferred to Kyiv. France will also supply Bastion armored vehicles to Ukraine.
On Jan. 5, following talks between U.S. President Joe Biden and German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, the United States and Germany announced that they would transfer the Marder and Bradley infantry fighting vehicles to Ukraine. Berlin will also transfer an additional Patriot air defense battery to Ukraine – on top of the one Washington pledged back in December 2022.
Ukraine’s military intelligence head, Kyrylo Budanov, said on Jan. 4 that Ukraine is planning a major push in the spring, with the fighting to be the “hottest” in March.
“This is (when we will see more) liberation of territories and dealing the final defeats to the Russian Federation,” he said.
“This will happen throughout Ukraine, from Crimea to the Donbas.”