In our latest interview with Univ. Prof. Dr. Gerhard Mangott we discuss the war in Ukraine, the military situation in the Donbass, lack of weaponry for Ukraine, Putin’s geostrategy and the role of the USA.
The Russian army is on a slow but steady advance in the Donbass region now for many weeks. Especially the strategically important city of Sjewjerodonetsk is hotly contested.
Prof. Mangott expects a military decision in this battle in the next 7 to 10 days.
He rules out a Russian attack on NATO countries in the foreseeable future due to the high consumption of war material and the high number of Russian casualties in the Ukraine war.
Since many Western countries have not kept their promises to supply heavy weapons to Ukraine, the Ukrainian army now lacks heavy weapons and ammunition which leads to
an inability to fight back effectively and decreasing morale within the Ukrainian army.
Casualty figures on both sides are very high, reports of repeated refusals to obey orders appear to be credible.
While the Ukrainians have had some military success in the south lately, they regularly experience setbacks in the Donbass region, where Russia has been concentrating it´s firepower for many weeks now.
President Selensky has ruled out negotiating a cease-fire with Russia until the end of August, as several Ukrainian counteroffensives are planned until then. For Prof. Mangott, Selensky´s statements that Ukraine will recapture all occupied territories are an expression of the fact that Selensky is also under strong political pressure within the Ukrainian leadership which policy Ukraine should persue now. And more than that, the debate in the West between those countries who want peace negotiations soon (Italy, Germany, France) and those who want to continue the fight until Russia is defeated or fully withdraws from Ukraine (Poland, the Baltic states, the United States, the United Kingdom) is also reflected in the Ukrainian leadership.
Whether the West will reduce its support for Ukraine due to fatigue because of the economic fallout remains to be seen. The cause for Russia´s supply difficulties for natural gas to some European countries are political explains Prof. Mangott. A possibly deciding actor in the Ukraine war is China. Obviously China has itself closely allied with Russia in recent years, but China is acting very carefully in order to avoid to be sanctioned by the West.
The political and military role of the USA in recent years in Ukraine has been heavily critized by Russia and been cited as a major cause for the Russian invasion in Ukraine by President Putin. After several missteps at public appearances it has become obvious that US President Biden is no longer at the top of his game which raises the question if the world currently underestimates the USA because of the weak leadership of President Biden.
Prof. Mangott analyzes that although the USA is hopelessly divided and the political system completely dysfunctional there is massive bipartisan support for supporting Ukraine.
Several globally important countries like India, Brazil, Turkey and Isreal remain neutral and do not participate in the sanctions against Russia, which leads to the question how much Russia is actually isolated….
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