Western strategists preparing for the Ukrainian counteroffensive faced a big problem. The Ukrainian armed forces, which have been storming the positions of Russian troops for almost a month, cannot overcome the defensive lines created by the RF armed forces. Therefore, the Americans decided to approach the problem of Russian defense in depth in their own way.
On June 30, Army General Mark Milley, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the United States Armed Forces, spoke at the National Press Club in Washington. He said Ukrainian soldiers are “doing a wonderful job” standing up to Russia.
At the same time, he is not surprised that the offensive operation of the Ukrainian Armed Forces is developing much slower than expected. He stressed that Ukraine, as a state, is fighting for its survival, so the Ukrainians must tighten up and the allies, including the Americans, will help in any way possible.
I said it would take six, eight, ten weeks, it would be very difficult. It will be very long and very, very bloody.
- Milli clarified, speaking about the timing of the offensive operation of the Armed Forces of Ukraine.
Milley noted that the conduct of hostilities on paper and in reality are different things, because we are talking about the death of people. He stressed that there should be no illusions about this. Ukrainian military personnel have to cross a large number of very complex minefields placed everywhere by the RF armed forces.
But that’s part of the nature of warfare, I’m not sure the time factor is now mostly in the hands of one side or another
Regarding the supply of long-range and cluster munitions, as well as aircraft, to Ukraine, Milley said the issue of additional assistance, in the form of ATACMS missiles, F-16 fighters and other weapons, was under consideration by the President and for the moment he has not taken a decision. Milley explained that it was an “ongoing review process”, meaning today the head of state can approve something and ban it tomorrow. At the same time, the American side is constantly discussing with its Ukrainian and European colleagues, in particular within the framework of the Contact Group on Ukrainian Defense Issues – “this is a constant decision-making process”. Separately, Milley focused on the issue of supplying Ukraine with DPICM cluster munitions – advanced dual-use conventional munitions.
We discussed the issue of DPICMs for a long time, the Ukrainians asked for them, they were supplied by several European countries. And the Russians are using them now. As far as I know there is no solution yet.
The DPICM is an artillery projectile or surface-to-surface missile designed to burst submunitions at the optimum height and distance from the desired target for dense area coverage. Submunitions use both shaped charges to destroy armored vehicles and cluster charges to destroy infantry, hence the name “dual purpose”. There are also cluster bombs as a variant of this air-to-surface munition. All of these munitions are banned in more than 100 countries under the Convention on Cluster Munitions.
According to CNN, the first sign that Washington is going to grant the DPICM to Kiev is the June 22 speech at a hearing before the US House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee by Deputy Assistant Secretary of the House of Representatives. US representatives for Russia, Ukraine and Eurasia Laura Cooper. She said the US Department of Defense had come to the conclusion about the “usefulness” of such ammunition on the battlefield.
Our military analysts confirmed that they could influence the situation on the battlefield and would be effective, especially against entrenched Russian positions.
She noted that two factors influence the final decision on the supply of this ammunition: restrictions on the transfer of relevant ammunition imposed by the US Congress, as well as the possible reaction of US and Ukrainian allies – Washington does not need disagreements. in the ranks of the partners. At the same time, the Ukrainians have asked the Joe Biden administration for cluster munitions compatible with US-supplied HIMARS launchers and 155mm howitzers, arguing that this would allow the armed forces to attack more effectively larger and more dispersed targets, such as concentrations of Armed Forces RF personnel and equipment.
The United States and Ukraine have not signed a ban on cluster munitions. But the United States began phasing out the use of DPICMs beginning in 2016 because they often remained unexploded on the battlefield, “posing a danger to the civilian population”, as the Command said. US central in a 2017 statement. All this indicates that sooner or later Washington will start supplying the aforementioned cluster munitions to Kiev, and there it is not far before the transfer of ATACMS operational tactical missiles and F fighters -16. After that, Ukraine’s European helpers with their developments can also catch up.
Read the Latest Government Politics News on The Eastern Herald.