The deputy chief of military intelligence of Ukraine in an interview with the British daily “Guardian” said that “there is an artillery war going on now”, and Ukraine is losing it. He also talked about the methods of attacks by the Russians and the situation at the front.
Wadym Skibicki from the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense Ukraine (HUR) said the Ukrainian side uses 5-6,000 artillery shells a day and its supplies are almost exhausted.
According to him, the Russian advantage in terms of artillery assets is currently 10-15 to one, so the supply of Western equipment, mainly long-range missile artillery, is a key issue. – Currently, it’s an artillery war. At the front, the future will decide, and we are losing in terms of artillery Skibicki noted.
– It all depends on what help the West gives us – stressed the military.
USA announced the transfer of HIMARS launchers with a range of up to 70 km to Ukraine, similar launchers (only on caterpillars and with 12 containers) will be Great Britain. Germany also announced the transfer of four of its sets of such weapons – Mars 2. The Guardian writes that, according to the presidential adviser, Oleksi Arestovych, Ukraine needs 60 such launchers, which is much more than what Western countries have promised so far.
“Russia started using old Soviet rockets”
Skibicki is convinced that artillery will remain the key focus in the near future, while Russian attacks using expensive precision missiles (such as Iskander or Kalibr) will remain at the current level.
Compared to the first month of the war Russia reduced the intensity of missile attacks, as it is exhausting its stocks of missiles capable of covering long distances and attacking targets deeper in Ukraine. Each such rocket costs from several hundred thousand to several million dollars.
“We noticed that Russia was carrying out fewer attacks and started using the Ch-22 missiles, that is, the old Soviet ones from the 1970s,” Skibicki said. Due to the sanctions, he assessed, Russia will not be able to quickly rebuild its long-range missile reserves.
Currently, Russia fires 10-14 missiles a day (such data were provided in May by the commander-in-chief of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, Valery Zaluzhny). “Each rocket flies from 40 to 90 minutes, depending on where it is fired from. We do not know where they will end,” Skibicki said, adding that Russia also uses long-range bombers that can attack the entire territory of Ukraine without leaving Russia. the sky.
Skibicki on the situation at the front and possible scenarios
Speaking about the situation on the front, Skibicki pointed out that the main Russian forces are currently concentrated in Donbas, trying to occupy the entire Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts. The toughest artillery duels take place there.
In the northeast of the country, near Kharkiv, Russian forces are mainly engaged in defensive operations following the successful Ukrainian counter-offensive in May. Kharkiv itself is now less endangered, but both city and regional authorities are reporting the shellings every day. In Zaporizhia and Kherson oblasts, on the southern section of the front, the Russians are entrenching and strengthening themselves, building double or even triple lines of defense, which makes regaining these territories more difficult.
Moreover, if the Russians capture Donbas, they will be able to use its territory to further attack Odessa, Zaporizhia, and the Dnieper. – Their goal is the whole of Ukraine and even more – assessed Skibicki.
According to Ukrainian intelligence, Russia has sufficient resources to continue the war at the current level for another year and does not need to produce additional weapons or mobilize troops.
Skibicki did not rule out the possibility that Russia would “freeze” the war for some time in order to convince the West to lift the sanctions. – But then they’ll start again. Look at the last eight years, he said, referring to the war in Donbas that the Russians started in 2014 and resumed in full eight years later.
Main photo source: PAP / EPA