An Assessment of Russia’s Offensive Military Campaign in the War in Ukraine
A new report from the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) assessing the offensive side of Russia’s war in Ukraine shows the initial campaign has created the conditions of a “violent and bloody” stalemate.
The assessment found Ukraine has defeated Russia’s initial offensive campaign attacking Kyiv, Kharkiv, Odesa, and other major cities that was intended to force a change of government in Ukraine.
The ISW found Russia is continuing to send reinforcements to keep the campaign alive, but assesses it will fail regardless.
The drawn-out fighting in Mariupol is also “seriously weakening Russian forces,” according to the assessment.
The ISW believes Mariupol will ultimately fall to Russia, but that the forces attacking the city will be too weak to continue fighting and moving west.
Russia’s struggle to take Mariupol also undermines its chances of taking larger cities like Kryvyi Rih.
Stalemate, but not like you think:
According to the ISW, “[s]talemate is not armistice or ceasefire,” rather, it’s a condition of war where each side conducts offensive campaigns that do not fundamentally alter the situation.
If the war settles into a stalemate, which the ISW views as “likely,” it could ultimately last for weeks or months, devastating Ukrainian cities and killing civilians.
About the Institute:
The ISW is a non-partisan, non-profit public policy organization dedicated to understanding military affairs through research and analysis.
According to the Library of Congress, the institute “seeks to strengthen civilian leadership and the electorate by making the important study of military operations available to the public.”