“After the rapid withdrawal of the Russians from kyiv and Chernihiv, it is clear that Russia has given priority to another tactic: moving east/south, controlling large occupied territories (not only in the Donetsk regions and Luhansk) and establish a firm foothold there,” Podolyak said on Saturday.
“They have established themselves in the east and the south and are imposing harsh conditions,” Podolyak added. “So we absolutely cannot do without heavy weapons if we want to unblock the east and Kherson and send [back] the Russians as much as possible.”
Last month, the Russian military said the ‘first stage’ of its invasion of Ukraine was complete and that it would withdraw its forces around kyiv and Chernihiv to concentrate on the Donbass region in the east. from the country.
Podolyak alluded to expectations from US and Western officials that Ukraine might need to prepare for partisan warfare in the event of a Russian invasion and the fall of the Ukrainian capital.
“Our partners must finally understand that the ‘Afghanization’ they want and the exhausting long-lasting conflict for Russia will not happen,” Podolyak said, referring to the Kremlin’s bloody nine-year campaign to support the Marxist government in Kabul.
“Afghanization is when there is strong guerrilla resistance across the country which inflicts heavy casualties on the aggressor for many months or even years and thus greatly weakens the power of the army of the occupier,” Podolyak explained.
“Such actions took place during the Soviet Union’s attempt to control Afghanistan: Afghan guerrillas destroyed and weakened the Soviet occupiers for years. As a result, Russia as a whole was weakened.
“Russia will leave all Ukrainian territories except the south and east. And will try to dig in there, put up air defense and significantly reduce the loss of its equipment and personnel,” Podolyak added.
“All arms deliveries are destabilizing, especially those mentioned by (Ben) Wallace (the British Defense Secretary),” Kelin said, according to Russian news agency TASS. “They are exacerbating the situation and making it bloodier.”
“Apparently, these are new, rather high-precision weapons. Of course, they will be legitimate targets for our armed forces if they cross the Ukrainian border.”
“I have a feeling that London’s idea of what is happening militarily in Ukraine is formed based on bravado reports from the Ukrainian Defense Ministry and Ukrainian leadership,” Kelin said.