As the conflict approaches what appears to be a violent and possibly protracted new phase, western nations are delivering heavy equipment to Ukraine.
Those supplies come amid increasing frantic calls from Ukrainian frontline leadership, who are facing weeks or months of withering Russian artillery and rocket assaults.
The List of Toys is Massive
The Biden government has begun sending out $1.2 billion worth of artillery pieces, 200,000 artillery shells, armored cars, counter-battery radar systems, and innovative treatment armed drones able to fly into locations over the last two weeks.
The shipments are a considerable step forward from the small weapons and Javelin anti-tank armor deployments that characterized the first eight weeks of battle and helped deter Russian thrusts into Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital.
For the first time, France and Canada announced preparations to transfer long-range artillery weapons; the United Kingdom is preparing to backfill heavy equipment to Poland as Warsaw considers sending Polish vehicles to Ukraine.
Finland is giving serious consideration to joining Nato. Here's 4 mins on why. And on how Putin used Nato expansion as a justification to invade Ukraine – but now the war may trigger further Nato expansion. Produced Mary Fuller and Michael Cox. https://t.co/wtlIUZMI9X pic.twitter.com/x4vfZqULKj
— Ros Atkins (@BBCRosAtkins) April 26, 2022
During a surprise visit to Kyiv by Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin on the weekend, the United States pledged more than $300 large amount of foreign military finance for Ukraine, as well as an extra $165 million for munitions.
The quick shift in aid underscores the realization that upcoming struggles will almost certainly be characterized by artillery bombardments and tank clashes as infantry troops fight over the flat plains of eastern Ukraine.
However, in the following days, getting this new weaponry to the front fast will be vital.
A surge of Russian iron has been aimed toward Ukrainian battalions holding the line north of the beleaguered city of Mariupol; a few dozen men are making a last heroic fight on the premises of the Azovstal steel complex, as the war takes on a new tone.
The Men on the Ground Need More
First Lt. Ivan Skuratovsky of the 25th Parachute Brigade, who is stationed 80 miles north of the city, told Politico that support is urgently needed.
Intercepted Russian Communication
This phone call shows a Russian soldier stating that the official Kremlin death toll should not be believed.
He tells an unknown Russian male that 25,900 Russian soldiers have died.#UkraineWar #UkraineRussiaWar #Ukraine #Russia pic.twitter.com/dvyznMUZgk
— WhereisRussiaToday🌻 (@WhereisRussia) April 27, 2022
“The scenario is quite awful,” the 31-year-old father of two wrote via text. “[Russian soldiers] are adopting scorched-earth tactics.”
He texted, “They simply destroy it all with artillery, firing day and night.”
He is concerned that unless assistance in the shape of people and heavy equipment — particularly air assistance — arrives within the next few days, his troops will be in the same situation as those in Mariupol.
The situation of Skuratovsky’s forces was described as “very dire.”
“I’m not sure how much force we’ll have,” he added, adding the forces under his command in the Avdiivka area, near Donetsk, have been fighting nonstop since the battle began.
He claims at least 13 of them have been injured in recent weeks; they are running out of ammo and have been forced to ration bullets.