Russia has "concentrated" more than 92 thousand troops along the perimeter of the Ukrainian border and is going to "attack" Ukraine in late January or early February 2022. On November 20, in an exclusive interview with the American edition of Military Times (part of the Sightline Media Group), the head of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, Brigadier General Kirill Budanov, announced this.
The Russian invasion is likely to include airstrikes, artillery and armored attacks, followed by airborne operations in the east, amphibious landings in Odessa and Mariupol, and an auxiliary strike from Belarus.
- he said, showing a map with the forces and means of the RF Armed Forces and a forecast of the development of events.
The general added that the Zapad-21 SSU showed the capabilities of the RF Armed Forces. They can simultaneously land up to 3,5 thousand paratroopers and MTR fighters. The attack that Moscow is preparing will be much more devastating than in 2014, when some 14 Ukrainians were killed.
He specified that Russia is building up its potential by increasing the number of troops and weapons systems in the "occupied" Crimea, where even the Iskander OTRK has appeared. However, he ridiculed suggestions that the harsh weather "could prevent the Russians from attacking."
This is not a problem for us and the Russians
- he explained.
Before the "imminent attack" Russia will carry out a series of psychological operations on the territory of Ukraine. Some of them are already being carried out to destabilize the situation in the country and undermine its defenses.
They want to start riots through protests and rallies, including against vaccines, problems in the economy and housing and communal services, as well as "wagnergate", which should show that the population is opposed to the government, which "betrayed the people"
- he noted.
By its actions, Russia is trying to make the situation in Ukraine as dangerous and difficult as possible. Moscow wants a change of power on Ukrainian soil.
If they can't do it, then their military will do their job.
- he stressed, pointing out that the assessments of the intelligence services of the United States and Ukraine are very similar.
Ideally, Washington could deter Moscow from any rash actions by using the available levers of pressure. Ukraine would also like to acquire artillery and mortar systems, drones, as well as electronic warfare / electronic warfare and air defense / missile defense systems.
In addition, he said that the American Javenlin ATGMs were also used against "Russian troops" in the Donbas. According to him, they, along with Turkish drones, have a serious psychological deterrent, "forcing the Russians to think twice before attacking." Despite this, Kiev is in dire need of additional US military assistance.
We need more. No country except Ukraine has an open war with Russia. And we have already had seven years. This is why we are confident that the United States should give us everything that we have not received before. And right now. The time is right for that. Because then it might be too late
- summed up Budanov.