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What will happen in the fight for Ukraine, now Vladimir Putin’s next step?

Russia-Ukraine War What Next For Putin: Russian President Vladimir Putin attacked Ukraine five months ago in February. Now Putin will definitely think of taking a decision about the next step to carry out this attack. In conversation with AFP after Russian troops captured Ukraine’s strategic city of Lysychansk on Sunday, security experts described five different possible options for Putin’s next move. Is.

pre-crushing strategy

Russian forces were visible in the Donbas area of ​​Ukraine. The Russian army had reached here to completely capture this area. It is noteworthy that even before the February 24 invasion, this area of ​​​​Southeast Ukraine was partially occupied by pro-Kremlin separatists. Kremlin supporters are in favor of Russia’s attack on Ukraine.

Pierre Grasser, a researcher at the Sorbonne University in Paris, told that last week the Russian army occupied Lisichansk and its twin city Severodonetsk. In addition, Putin’s troops “can also be expected to occupy Sloviansk and Kramatorsk and surrounding areas.”

He added that Sloviansk in particular “is home to a relatively host population, at least those who have remained there rather than fleeing the war.” There may also be a limit to how far Russia can exert pressure in its neighboring region. Pierre Razoux, academic director of the Mediterranean Foundation for Strategic Studies (FMES), says, “Their (Russian) steamrollers work better near their own borders, their own logistics centers and their airbases.” But the farther they go, the more difficult it becomes for them.”

control of the black sea

In the early stages of the war, the southern Ukrainian city of Kherson was the first to succumb to the Russian army, but Russia’s hold on the country’s Black Sea coast is not strong. On this, Mick Ryan, a former general of the Australian Army, says that the Russian army may be in dilemma due to Ukraine’s counter-attack in the south. In such a situation, will the Russian army continue its attack in the eastern region of Ukraine or will it bring itself to a strong position in the area of ​​the south?

He further said that this question is even more important because the war in the south of Ukraine is a front of more strategic importance for Russia than the Donbass. Russia’s strengthening of this landmass along the Black Sea coast could help Moscow build a land bridge to the Crimean Peninsula, which it occupied in 2014. When both sides want to control the Black Sea ports of Ukraine.

separation of kharkiv

Kharkiv, Ukraine’s second largest city, is close to the northeastern border with Russia. The city now falls in a pocket occupied by Kyiv, which is yet to be tried by the Russian army and can separate it from Ukraine. FMES director Pierre Razoux states that if the Ukrainians collapse or are defeated and are completely isolated from Kharkiv, the Russians will have to defend the city or face Russian forces in the south towards Kherson. Can force you to choose the option.

He said it would be entirely up to Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky and Ukrainian commanders to “deploy their units and lay siege to Kharkiv, to prevent Russia from trying to separate Kharkiv from Ukraine.” The siege of Kharkiv, home to 1.4 million people during peacetime, could be a year-long violence.

divide the west

When Western countries have so far opened a united front of sanctions and support for Ukraine. In such a situation, continued Russian progress can divide the attitudes of these allies supporting Ukraine on the basis of their individual interests. Colin Clarke, director of research at the Soufan Center think-tank in New York, said, “Russia’s goal waits for the political will to support Ukraine among Western countries to fade away.” The Ukrainian army has to continue to trample on the battlefield during the period.

It should be noted here that the inflow of Western military aid has been too slow and too little to turn the battle decisively in Kiev’s favour. Meanwhile, the inflationary impact of the war on basics like food and energy could gradually drive public opinion away from Ukraine’s already strong support. Alexander Grinberg, an analyst at the Jerusalem Institute for Security and Strategy, said, “Americans can tell Ukrainians ‘you can’t go further’.”

open communication

Russia itself is paying a heavy price for casualties and loss of military material on the battlefield due to sanctions imposed by Western countries. “Putin will be forced to negotiate at some point, Putin has eaten more than he could chew,” said research director Colin Clark. This means that he started this war on this big level and now it is not being handled by him.

At the end of June, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov had already taken up the option of talks. In which all the conditions set by Russia were to be implemented, but it was unfavourable on all these conditions. Putin’s control over domestic information means this Russian leader is free to tell the public that he has achieved his objectives. With this, he can justify stopping the fight. A bigger challenge could be a split on the Ukrainian side.

Pierre Razoux says Ukraine’s radical and military leaders will rule out any deal with Russia, even if Zelensky agrees to a deal. But they will not be able to bear a frozen conflict, but not defeat. A frozen conflict is a conflict in international relations in which an active armed conflict is put to an end, but no peace treaty or other political framework resolves the conflict to the satisfaction of the combatants.

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