Retired Us General Petraeus :will ATACMS Fulfill Ukraine’s Expectations

US General David Petraeus was interviewed on May 31 at a security conference organized by Cipher Brief. This interview was given at a time when America and Europe were openly supporting Ukraine

Petraeus was a four-star American general who led troops in two conflicts. He has led international troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and was CIA director between 2011 and 2012.

Former CIA director and military strategist David Petraeus talks about the current state of the war in Ukraine, including the just-concluded Battle of Bakhmut and the expected response of Ukrainian military forces after a full-scale invasion by Russia in 2022 Action is involved. Talking further, he kept his point on many points.

General David Petraeus added that he sees the conflict at a turning point. This is in response to the willful failure of the Russian Winter Offensive to achieve its goals. The Ukrainians claimed that Bakhmut was a “mousetrap” that allowed them to kill thousands of Russian soldiers and injure thousands more.

This happened after Russia had already suffered defeat at the Battle of Kyiv and Sumy and Chernihiv. And then there was the very notable collapse offensive launched by Ukrainian troops in Kharkiv (oblast), south of Kharkiv.

And then there was a very clever fallout campaign that isolated the Russian forces west of the Dnieper River and destroyed their supply depots, headquarters, reserve force positions, barracks, and everything else they could get out of there. I wasn’t forced to leave. , Region of Kherson (oblast).

And now, of course, the Ukrainians have long been preparing for a counteroffensive, building up more brigades—six armor brigades are publicly known, plus several additional brigades of other types.

Former CIA director General David Petraeus predicts a strong Ukrainian counteroffensive in the first three to four days.
He said Ukrainians are “determined to liberate their country.”

“My sense is that they will achieve combined arms effects in other words, they will successfully carry out combined arms operations where you have engineers breaching the obstacles and diffusing the minefields and so forth; armor following right on through protected by infantry against anti-tank missiles; air defense keeping the Russians aircraft off them; electronic warfare jamming their radio networks; logistics right up behind them; artillery and mortars rigged up;

Petraeus said the lead elements “inevitably culminate after 72-96 hours.” He believed Ukraine would isolate Crimea by cutting off Russian resupply.

He said, “Not in this counteroffensive.”

General Petraeus: Ukraine can make long-range weapons.
“But if they can get to the point of beginning to isolate Crimea, I think that changes the dynamics substantially,” the General said.

Zelensky told a press conference with Estonian President Alan Karis that the counteroffensive should liberate Ukrainian regions from Russian invaders.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said NATO members had given Ukraine enough military aid to liberate Russian-occupied territory, but they are willing to do more. Read parts of things

Media questions: After Bakhmut the counterattack begins. Now what?

Gen. David Petraeus: The conflict is transitioning. It follows the Russian winter offensive’s failure. The Ukrainians called Bakhmut a mousetrap for killing tens of thousands of Russian soldiers and wounding many more.

That was after Russia lost the battles of Kyiv, Sumy, Chernihiv, and Kharkiv—next, Ukraine’s stunning fall offensive south of Kharkiv (Oblast).

And then the very skillful fall campaign that forced the Russian forces west of the Dnipro River to withdraw from that portion of Kherson (Oblast) by isolating them and destroying their logistical support depots, headquarters, reserve force locations, barracks, and all of that.

Retired Us General Petraeus
Retired Us General Petraeus

Of course, over many months, the Ukrainians have been developing six tank brigades and several other units to carry out the counteroffensive.

This counteroffensive will attack depleted Russian forces. They lost heavily. For a year or more, they’ve been in combat. Unit replacement should be done. However, they’re not. They’re not reorganizing following losses. They simply insert inadequately trained and equipped individuals.

They’re disorganized. The command culture is top-down, abusive, and directive. So you don’t have the tiny unit cohesiveness and discipline needed to retire to defensive positions under Ukrainian pressure.

The Ukrainian military, though, has been training for months. They have discipline. With Western tanks and infantry fighting vehicles, they’re well-led and equipped.

I think Ukraine will attain combined arms effects.

These tanks are defended by infantry and artillery, keeping the enemy’s head down. Precision strike drones using Ukraine’s precision artillery, rockets, and missiles.

Electronic warfare to jam Russia’s single-channel unencrypted HF radio communications, which have been so inadequate that they had to switch to cell phones, and engineers integrated into the forward elements to breach the obstacles literally.

Complexity abounds. While defusing explosives, demining, and reducing homemade explosives, smoke artillery mortars must be used to keep the adversary quiet.

Air defense is a top priority to prevent Russian attack helicopters and planes from providing close air support. It’s complicated and requires competent management. Like a symphony, you must orchestrate this. You need all the parts to work.

Do you suppose the Ukrainian commandment created this symphony?

Yes, very much so. And Ukraine has – over the years, but particularly since the beginning of this phase of the war – fostered initiative in a way that was not common in the old Soviet system. The Soviet system was “you do what you’re told.”

We used to say, “In the absence of orders, figure out what they should have been and execute aggressively.” We promoted that, which is the essence of the new Ukrainian army and military.

Obviously, the ground needs additional drying. The base must be firm. Thus, 60-ton track vehicles and tanks can go off-road without getting stranded.

Push wheel vehicles over to free logistical support from roads.

Russian soldiers storming Kyiv had a weakness there. They couldn’t leave the highways because of the terrain, forests, barriers, water, and their incompetence. After stopping them, you take out the fuel trucks. They went up and down until they had to retreat, leaving behind innumerable weapon systems and vehicles.

I think the Russian forces will collapse when this happens. I saw combined arms effects.

That’s what we did throughout the fight for Baghdad, and it’s scary for the enemy—if you get this going, if you get momentum, if you get the pure shock of this, they won’t be able to stand in the face of this any more than they did in the Kharkiv attack. This is considerably different because you didn’t have all the follow-on factors.

When the lead brigade arrives, you can’t move further. You’ve also lost. After losing several systems, you need to reconstitute and replenish the unit. Forces can press through after that. I think that’ll happen.

Then, Russia must reply. They have to try to rebuild defensive lines, then narrow the lines elsewhere and see if there are other opportunities.

That’s a reasonable prediction. Naturally, it’s optimistic.

How broad is this? Given a 2,000-kilometer front line, how can you change this? It’s about using the capability, capitalizing on it, and keeping momentum.

He also addressed questions from the press regarding Crimea

I won’t try to guess where the counteroffensive will start.

Multiple world leaders have openly announced their desire to sever the communications link between Russia and Crimea. There are many places and methods for doing so, and I will not make any assumptions about them. But I believe it is possible to accomplish it.

Keeping in mind that this is a much larger, much more difficult, and much more complex task than isolating the Russian forces west of the Dnieper River in Kherson, the next question is how close you can get to the actual boundary of Crimea to do so.

I believe that is a reasonable goal that can be accomplished. How, therefore, can Crimea be even more cut off from the rest of the world? Can that be enough to change the war’s dynamic by putting pressure on Russia?

Do you think Ukraine can liberate Crimea militarily? Ukraine should do it

That is not the appropriate inquiry, in my opinion. If anything, the question should be “How can Crimea be liberated?” Indeed, that’s the kind of thing worth striving towards. But the most natural manner of accomplishing something may not be the one used—landing on an undefended island and storming it. Many strategies come to mind for compulsion in this regard. To go into further depth would bore me.

Do you think Ukraine’s long-term Bakhmut retention was strategic?

Absolutely. Russia pierced Bakhmut’s buildings and landscape. It’s possible 20,000 Russians died.

You consider Prigozhin’s statements and videos. He displayed dead bodies and more. For badly wounded, multiply by four.

So many tens of thousands, if not a hundred thousand Russian soldiers had to be evacuated, killed or injured. It’s a considerable expense.

Ukraine lost a lot. However, the defender’s advantage is enormous. To seize an urban region, the military requires a five-to-one gift. Ukraine has made the adversary pay a considerable price. So I think this was a good decision.

The Wagner Group is currently virtually ineffective. It needs remaking. They’re pulling the Wagner Group off the front lines or replacing them with less capable personnel.

I think Bakhmut is vulnerable. Remember how it appeared the Russians were trying to encircle the Ukrainians? I think the Russians should worry about being wrapped.

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