(UnitedHeadlines.com) – Western-trained troops have begun fighting on the frontline of the war between Russia and Ukraine. The New York Times reports that the fighters are using US-made Bradley vehicles and destroying Russian armory with anti-tank missiles.
America and its allies have been training 36,000 Ukrainian soldiers for the past few months, and these have now been deployed. The troops will take part in the long-awaited Ukrainian counter-offensive that began in earnest in early June. Military experts say the success or otherwise of Ukraine’s offensive will be shaped to a large extent by the Western-trained combatants.
The aim of the counter-offensive, which Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky has long anticipated, is to retake territory conquered and held by the Russians. Immediate press reports, days into the operation, suggest it has not taken off with the speed or efficiency President Zelensky would have liked. However, Ukrainian officials say they have retaken eight settlements in the eastern Donetsk region and southern region of Zaporizhzhia.
Heavy fighting continues around the Bakhmut area, where the bloodiest episodes of the war have so far occurred. The American Institute for the Study of War says Ukraine is making headway in that crucial battle.
Russia is continuing its bombardment of the capital city of Kyiv, and the Kremlin claims it has moved tactical nuclear weapons to Belarus. Russian President Vladimir Putin said such weapons will only be used if there is a direct threat to Russia. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said there is little need for concern regarding Moscow’s potential nuclear threat. “We don’t see any indications that Russia is preparing to use a nuclear weapon,” Mr. Blinken said.
Putin told reporters he has no intention of posing a global danger. “Why should we threaten the whole world? I have already said that the use of extreme measures is possible in case there is a danger to Russian statehood,” the President said.
The war began in February 2022 and has cost the lives of around 360,000 troops.
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