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Conflicting expectations about the course of the war in Ukraine

Photo: EPA/BGNES

US intelligence expects hostilities in Ukraine to develop at a slower pace over the next few months. Speaking at the annual Reagan National Defence Forum in Simi Valley, California, Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines said she sees no evidence that Ukraine’s will to resist Russia has diminished, despite Moscow’s crippling attacks on the Ukrainian power grid amid the coming winter.

On the contrary the U.S.-based Institute for the Study of War (ISW) does not assess the fighting in Ukraine will halt or enter a stalemate due to winter weather. According to them fighting will likely intensify over that winter period given that frozen ground provides better conditions for maneuver warfare, especially along the Svatove-Kreminna highway.

Russian President Vladimir Putin is not sincere about peace talks with Ukraine U.S. Under Secretary for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland said on Saturday, during her visit to Kyiv. 

“Diplomacy is obviously everyone’s objective but you have to have a willing partner,” she told reporters. “And it’s very clear, whether it’s the energy attacks, whether it’s the rhetoric out of the Kremlin and the general attitude, that Putin is not sincere or ready for that,” Newland said quoted by Reuters.

The diplomat explained to reporters that Moscow had resorted to attacking Ukrainian civilian infrastructure after receiving a strong signal from the world that the consequences for Russia would be severe if it used nuclear weapons in the war.

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