Russo-Ukrainian War 4/29/22

U.S. Marine Corps M777 towed 155 mm howitzers are staged on the flight line prior to being loaded onto a U.S. Air Force C-17 Globemaster III aircraft at March Air Reserve Base, California, April 22, 2022. The howitzers are part of the United States’ efforts alongside allies and partners to identify and provide Ukraine with additional capabilities. (Image via Cpl. Austin Fraley)

American trainers have ramped up their training of Ukrainian forces, working on an accelerated timeline to deliver as much equipment into Ukrainian hands as possible amidst the grueling, ongoing offensive. Hundreds of trainers have returned from the United States and Europe, with more confirmed by the Department of Defense. Ongoing training is focused on howitzers and radar systems, among other anti-tank measures.

Now, there are preliminary reports that Ukraine may make a bid for even heavier weaponry, including modern Western jets like the F-16. Though it is unlikely the U.S. will transfer F-16s to Ukraine, the request comes at a critical juncture where Ukraine focuses on outlasting Russia’s attempt at a war of attrition, relying on the same dated, Soviet technology used by their aggressors.

Despite Russia’s heavy materiel losses in the failed Kyiv offensive, with abandoned armor strewing the streets of temporarily occupied cities, Russia still has a considerable armored force with which it is making marginal gains in the Donbas. Despite being unable to spearhead a proper offensive, Russian armor may slow the rate at which Ukrainian forces are able to bleed Russian forces out, delaying the Ukrainian counteroffensive on Crimea and stalling time for Putin to consider escalatory options.

Of course, Ukraine has received a lot of high-tech, Western support in more feasible systems, including purpose-built drones by the Pentagon and British ‘Starstreak’ MANPADS, Turkey’s TB2 ‘Bayraktar’ drones, and countless other weaponry from a vast array of nations hoping to resist Russian aggression. It has become clear that, regardless of the outcome, a post-war Ukraine must be trained and well-versed with Western technology to ensure Russia’s defeat in depth should the Federation dare a new attempt on any Ukrainian territory.

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