19 July 2024, Friday, 22:00
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'The Goal Is Total Isolation Of Crimea'

'The Goal Is Total Isolation Of Crimea'

The expert pointed out signs of preparation for a large operation by the Ukrainian forces.

Ukraine is destroying Russian air defence in Crimea. The Institute for the Study of War believes that this is a preparation for the appearance of F-16 aircraft in the service of the Ukrainian army.

Is this Kyiv's plan? Charter97.org asked Oleksandr Musienko, a political expert and head of the Ukrainian Center for Military and Legal Studies, this question:

— That's one of the reasons. Ukraine is preparing to receive the F-16. We hope that the first aircraft will appear in the Ukrainian sky in the coming weeks.

But there is still a separate strategy of Ukraine's strikes on Russian air defence facilities, S-400, S-300 systems, radars (including stationary radars, which were located in Alushta and on the Ai-Petri peak), communication centers and command posts. The task of all this is to disrupt the coordination of the correct and integral air defence system and its operation.

Accordingly, this is a preparation for larger strikes. Including not only ATACMS ballistic missiles, but also Storm Shadow/SCALP-EG cruise missiles. Perhaps also JSM missiles (with a range of up to 450 km), which, we expect, will be delivered to Ukraine along with the F-16.

The next stage involves larger air strikes with cruise missiles, as well as air and surface drones. The goal is the total isolation of the occupied peninsula for Russian troops.

Now we see an air war, a fairly successful war at sea. At the next, final stage, when the Russian troops will be weakened, an operation will be carried out on the left bank of the Kherson region. And, perhaps, also strengthening the isolation of Crimea in order to create conditions for landing there. And not only that.

We expect the F-16s to help us in achieving all these goals.

— Two serious publications — The Economist and The Telegraph — wrote that Crimea could become a trap for Russians, and the liberation of the peninsula could happen even before the entry of the Ukrainian forces. Do you think such a scenario is possible?

— Look, aviation, drones, air strikes can create conditions, weaken the enemy army. It can complicate their logistics, cut them off, but still, if we are talking about further opportunities, an amphibious landing and a ground operation are necessary.

We must create such conditions as it was with Kherson. Force them to retreat under the pressure. But it is difficult to do this without ground operations.

I think that Ukraine will increase the number of strikes. Especially when we get the aircraft. The Russians will have quite serious problems. They are already emerging. You see, if they cannot defend themselves with their own air defence, then imagine what will happen when these capabilities decrease, and Ukraine will increase the number of strikes. The amount of damage and destruction will increase.

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