Ukraine podcast: Mölling warns of exaggerated expectations of the offensive

Podcast “Ukraine – the situation”
Security expert Mölling warns against exaggerated expectations of the offensive: “This war does not work according to the script”

A Ukrainian soldier fires an RPG rocket-propelled grenade during his frontline training

© Libkos/AP/DPA

The security expert Christian Mölling has warned against exaggerated expectations of the Ukrainian offensive against the Russian occupiers. The decisive factor is who can hold out the longest in the end.

The security expert Christian Mölling has warned against exaggerated expectations of the Ukrainian offensive against the Russian occupiers. Mölling said on Tuesday in star-Podcast “Ukraine – the situation”, war is not a Hollywood film that you get excited about and then go home with a good feeling. “There is no script here,” said the research director of the German Society for Foreign Policy. “This war doesn’t work according to the rules of western media society.”

Mölling emphasized: “In the end, it’s not what we’re seeing that matters, but who has the staying power.” He pointed out that the Ukrainians were attacking many targets far behind the front lines. For example, ammunition hubs would be destroyed. Such attacks did not result in immediate gains in territory, but could set the stage for later successes – and “perhaps with fewer casualties than rushing senselessly against a front now.”

Mölling explained that the Ukrainians did not want to drive their own soldiers into battles with high losses. However, in the past two weeks it has also become clear that the Ukrainian troops have deficits, particularly in terms of air defense. As a result, the units are not well protected during their advances, especially against attacks by Russian helicopters, which increases the risk. “We see that’s an obvious problem,” he said.

Ukraine cannot stage a war

Despite the relatively small gains made by the Ukrainians, the expert was confident overall: “I wouldn’t see it too negatively,” he said. Ultimately, it will depend on who can mobilize more reserves and bring them to the front.

Mölling admitted that both warring parties controlled what information was leaked to the outside world. In contrast to the Russians, however, the Ukrainians cannot simply “invent their own reality” because they would have to coordinate their communication with their western partners. Nevertheless, the video recordings distributed by the Ukrainian side from the combat zone did not serve to provide complete information, but rather to serve the respective purposes and interests. Such images provided a kind of “frog’s perspective” of individual positions and events. There is also information about what is happening overall, such as that provided by satellite images. But both do not add up to a complete picture.

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