Zaporizhia: In the south, Ukrainian soldiers are fighting in an unforgiving landscape, flat farmland with little cover for the forces trying to advance. And 60 miles away, they charge across the plains, pushing toward a strategic railroad junction. Farther east, they target Russian positions on the hills outside Bakhmut, the ruined city that fell to Russian forces last month after the longest and bloodiest battle of the war.
In fierce battles along this front line this past week, Ukraine’s counter-offensive is starting to take shape, marking a major pivot in the war. With each confrontation, Ukraine tries to show that it can attack anywhere, while trying to make Russia defend everywhere.
After days of silence about the extent of the fighting, Mr. President Volodymyr Zelensky He gave the strongest confirmation yet on Saturday that the long-awaited counter-attack had begun. “Offensive and defensive measures are being taken in Ukraine,” he said in Kiev, Ukraine.
The confirmation came at a joint news conference with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who made his second unannounced visit to Kiev since the outbreak of all-out war in February last year.
Trudeau accused Russia of flooding from the breached Kakhovka Dam. “Russia is responsible and will be held accountable” for destroying the dam, he said. We have all seen the devastation caused by the dam collapse. This was a direct consequence of the Russian war. Trudeau also announced $375 million in new military aid to Ukraine.
The counteroffensive, a multi-pronged offensive, concentrated along the front in the south and east, is a test of Ukraine’s new arsenal of Western tanks and armored vehicles as well as tens of thousands of newly mobilized soldiers who have been training in Europe for months. Kiev, which is predictably suffering loss of life in the early stages, will need to show significant progress in its counter-offensive to keep money and weapons flowing in from the West.
Once the Ukrainian counter-offensive begins in full, it is expected to be one of the largest military operations in Europe since World War II.
Over the past 24 hours, Ukrainian forces have fired rockets and artillery shells at four Russian command posts; six areas of concentration of personnel, weapons and military equipment; three ammunition depots; The Ukrainian military said five enemy artillery units were in firing positions. Claims cannot be independently verified.


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