News of the day
This Thursday (197th day of war in Ukraine), Anthony Blinken traveled in secret, for this second visit to Kyiv since the beginning of the Russian invasion. The American Secretary of State began by visiting a hospital treating child victims of war, accompanied by his Ukrainian counterpart Dmytro Kouleba, before a meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
A few hours before Anthony Blinken’s arrival in kyiv, Secretary of State for Defense Lloyd Austin, present at the Ramstein military base in Germany, took part in a meeting with representatives of more than 40 countries. During this summit devoted to the challenges posed by the deliveries of weapons, crucial for Ukraine, Washington pledged some 2.8 billion dollars in additional support to kyiv and other countries in the region.
Of this sum, 675 million will go directly to kyiv in the form of deliveries of armaments, ammunition and Himars artillery systems which have already enabled kyiv to hit Russian supply lines far behind the front line. For the remaining 2.2 billion, they will be paid as loans and subsidies to Ukraine and 18 other countries feeling threatened by Russia, for the purchase of American weapons. Among the eligible countries are Georgia and Moldova, the Baltic countries or even Bosnia.
The number of the day
700. This is, in square kilometers, the territories taken over this Thursday by the Ukrainian forces in the regions of Kharkiv (North-East), in the South and in the Donbass (East). “Military units penetrated enemy defenses to a depth of 50 km. During the active operations carried out in the direction of Kharkiv, more than 20 localities were liberated,” Oleksiy Gromov, a senior official of the Ukrainian General Staff, told a press conference.
sentence of the day
“The euro zone risks a recession for the year 2023 in the event of a total cut in Russian gas deliveries. »
These are the words of Christine Lagarde, President of the European Central Bank, pronounced during a press conference on Thursday. A “pessimistic scenario” of forecasts developed by the monetary institution anticipates “a recession for 2023, she added. We are almost there. »
The trend of the day
Who will exhaust their equipment first? Here is the question that the experts have been asking themselves for a few days. Between Ukrainians who are in desperate need of Western military aid and Russians under sanctions who are firing on all cylinders, which side will find itself first on its knees for lack of shells, bombs, missiles? The Pentagon claimed that “Russia has approached North Korea asking for ammunition.” For its part, the British Ministry of Defense notes that the Russians seemed to be flying far fewer drones in recent days.
The Western and Ukrainian governments therefore insist that Russia suffers from serious logistical deficiencies, that the strikes, in particular thanks to Western armaments, are hurting it very much, and that it is using obsolete armaments because its stock is running out. “What remains to the Russians is mysterious. They had sufficient stock for their initial plan, but the fact is that the war lasts longer than expected, ”explains Frenchman Pierre Grasser, associate researcher at the Sirice laboratory. “The chances of a Russian military exhaustion are much higher than those of a Ukrainian military exhaustion”, estimates, for his part, the French expert Bruno Tertrais, deputy director of the Foundation for Strategic Research (FRS).
However, on social networks, accounts specializing in the identification of weapons note that Ukraine fires Pakistani or Iranian shells, for example. “Technically, Ukraine has enough to last until the beginning of winter. There are however some questions about NATO’s ability to provide beyond, abounds Pierre Grasser. We are entering a period of unstable equilibrium: the one who risks losing the battle of attrition is the one who could launch the counter-offensive too many”.