Hello. This is your Russia-Ukraine war briefing, an overnight guide to the latest news and analysis on the conflict.
New Weapons, New Confidence
Ukraine’s arms requests have become so frequent that some in the West have dismissed them as unrealistic background noise. But this week, Ukrainian officials backed up their calls by citing battlefield triumphs.
Ukraine highlights the successes it has had since the United States provided it with new long-range artillery and argues that it can eventually beat Russia, writes my colleague Andrew Kramer.
“Russia can definitely be defeated and Ukraine has already shown how,” defense minister Oleksiy Reznikov said this week.
Recent victories in the south include a strike on a key bridge that Russia uses for supplies and a strike on a Russian munitions depot, using US-supplied High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems, or HIMARS .
Today, the Ukrainian military said it used attack helicopters and jet planes to carry out 10 airstrikes against Russian ammunition depots and other positions in and around the Kherson region.
No one can yet say whether Ukraine will prevail against a Russian army with superior numbers and armament – or even what victory will look like.
But Ukraine says using HIMARS has given it an advantage, and the United States said yesterday it would send four more weapons, bringing the total provided by Washington to 16. The truck-mounted multiple rocket launchers fire satellite-guided rockets with a range of more than 40 miles, a distance capability greater than any weapon Ukraine possessed.
Ukraine’s intensified attacks are consistent with preparations for a ground offensive, analysts say.
“It’s important, I think, for the Ukrainians themselves that they demonstrate their ability to fight back,” Richard Moore, the head of Britain’s foreign intelligence service MI6, told the Aspen Security Forum in Colorado.
“To be honest, it will be an important reminder to the rest of Europe that this is a winnable campaign, as we are about to enter a rather difficult winter,” he said. .
Moore added that Ukrainian forces would have the opportunity to mount a counteroffensive in the coming weeks. The Russian army is “on the verge of running out of steam”, he said, and will be forced to suspend its offensive.
In the east, the Ukrainian army recently won a small but important victory by recapturing the village of Pavlivka, writes my colleague Carlotta Gall.
It marked a welcome turnaround in the region for Ukrainian troops, who had been on the retreat for months.
It also gave them a close view of the enemy, and what they saw gave them confidence.
“They were well-spoken, educated and well-equipped,” Kryha, who led the codenamed Ukrainian 53rd Brigade when taking the village, said of the captured Russians. “But they were all tired and lacked motivation.”
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How the war changed your view of the world
Before the 2022 war in Ukraine, I could not have filled in a map of the countries bordering Russia and other neighboring European countries. I could not have accurately placed Ukraine on the map and knew little about the country. Everything changed when Russia invaded Ukraine. I quickly learned not only the geography, but the names of the rulers of these countries, and began to observe the positions they took. I was surprised to learn that Russia attacked Ukraine in 2014 and seized Crimea, along with other lands. My view of the world is much more complete now. — Caroline Canavan, Detroit
My recognition of the extreme interdependence of the world economy has been altered. I knew we were connected. But the connections are deeper and more complex than I had imagined. —Jes Mason, Athens, Ga.
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What else we follow
Ukrainian officials said Russian forces struck bus stops in Kharkiv for the second day in a row, killing at least two people, including a child.
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Thanks for reading. I’ll be back tomorrow — Yana
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