“The Russians Simply Walked In To Kharkov”, Ukrainian Troops Tell BBC – ”There Was No Defence. Either It Was Negligence, Or Corruption. It Was Betrayal.”

Authored by Andrew Korybko via Substack,

BBC published a report over the weekend about how “The Russians simply walked in, Ukrainian troops in Kharkiv tell BBC”, citing special reconnaissance commander Denis Yaroslavsky. 

According to him“There was no first line of defence. We saw it. The Russians just walked in. They just walked in, without any mined fields. Either it was an act of negligence, or corruption. It wasn’t a failure. It was a betrayal.”

Here are three background briefings to familiarize the reader with this subject before proceeding:

* 2 December 2023: “Ukraine Is Bracing For A Possible Russian Offensive By Fortifying The Entire Front

* 28 February 2024: “The Ukrainian Intelligence Committee Is Preparing For The Worst-Case Scenario

* 18 March 2024: “Putin’s Talk Of Setting Up A ‘Sanitary/Security Zone’ In Ukraine Hints At A Potential Compromise

To summarize, Zelensky ordered the armed forces late last year to prepare for a new Russian offensive sometime during this one, which the Ukrainian Intelligence Committee predicted less than three months ago could occur in May or June. President Putin then warned in mid-March that his country could carve out a buffer zone in Ukraine to stop the shelling of nearby Russian cities and cross-border raids against neighboring regions. Russia’s fresh push into Kharkov Region therefore clearly wasn’t a surprise.

This makes it all the more shocking though that its forces “simply walked in”, after which it made such progress in the span of just a few days that Kiev panicked by replacing the senior commander responsible for defending this front. No personnel changes can rewind the clock and build the border fortifications that Zelensky assumed were constructed by now.

Kharkov is Ukraine’s second-largest city, so if it was left largely undefended, then other less significant border ones are probably undefended too.

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