Ukraine's Artillery Struggles Amid Russian Gains Despite US Aid

Ukrainian artillery units face a dire situation due to a scarcity of ammunition, limiting their daily shell count to single digits. A delayed $61 billion US aid package, held up by political wrangling, has severely stretched Ukrainian forces defending frontlines.

Ebenezer Mensah
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Ukraine's Artillery Struggles Amid Russian Gains Despite US Aid

Ukraine's Artillery Struggles Amid Russian Gains Despite US Aid

In the battle-scarred Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine, artillery units are facing a dire situation. Despite a substantial $61 billion US aid package, Ukrainian forces, near, under intense pressure, need ammunition supply as they confront relentless Russian advances. Since the start of 2024, Russia has managed to seize 432.3 square kilometers of territory, primarily in the Donetsk region, further compounding the challenges faced by Ukrainian defenders.

Why this matters: The struggle of Ukraine's artillery units has significant implications for the balance of power in Eastern Europe, as a Russian victory could embolden further aggression in the region. Moreover, the delayed US aid package highlights the challenges of international cooperation in responding to emerging crises.

The Russian military's new tactic of employing devastating aerial glide bombs, capable of dropping up to 1.5 tons of explosives, has proven to be a formidable threat to Ukrainian positions. These bombs often evade Ukraine's air defenses, leaving soldiers with few options to counter the superior war of the enemy. The gradual erosion of Ukrainian defenses has allowed Russian forces to make significant gains, particularly in the areas surrounding Avdiivka and west of Bakhmut.

Artillery gun commander Oleksandr Kozachenko paints a grim scenario of the current situation, stating,"If we compare it with the beginning of the full-scale invasion when we fired up to 100 shells a day, then now when we fire 30 shells, it's a luxury. "articleThe scarcity of ammunition has forced Ukrainian units to ration their firepower, sometimes limiting their daily shell count to single digits. The 148th Separate Artillery Brigade, among others, anxiously awaits the arrival of fresh supplies to bolster their defenses.

The dire situation extends beyond Donetsk, with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy highlighting the scale of the Russian onslaught. "Just this April alone, Russian terrorists used more than 300 missiles of various types, nearly 300 Shahed drones, and more than 3,200 guided aerial bombs against Ukraine," Zelenskyy revealed. The unrelenting attacks have taken a heavy toll on Ukrainian forces and civilians alike.

The USaid, alone package, which includes vital military assistance, has faced delays because of political wrangling in Washington. The stalled $61 billion in aid, coupled with additional support for Israel and Taiwan, has been held up by Republican demands for the administration to address border security concerns. The prolonged inaction has severely stretched Ukrainian forces, who are defending frontlines spanning 600 miles in the south and east of the country.

Russia's numerical advantage, with approximately 470,000 troops in Ukraine and a ten-to-one advantage in available artillery, has allowed them to make incremental but steady progress. The use of converted glide bombs, notably Soviet-designed FAB 500s, has proven particularly effective, forcing Ukrainian forces to expend significant resources defending single positions. Ukraine's overstretched air defenses have allowed Russian planes to come close to the frontlines, increasing the accuracy of theirwar, briefing, us, sanctions, war.

Despite the challenges, Ukrainian forces remain resolute in their defense. Commander Oleh Shyriaiev of the 225th Separate Assault Battalion expressed hope for the arrival of much-needed artillery shells, recalling the impact of cluster munitions in previous counter-attacks against Russian forces. "If we get long-range weapons, our leaders will cut (Russian forces) off from logistics and supplies," Shyriaiev added, emphasizing the potential to turn the tide of the war, live, updates, latest, news, war.

The passage of the US aid package offers a glimmer of hope for Ukraine, providing the necessary materiel to support more systematic military planning for the summer and fall. However, the delay in Washington has taken its toll, and it will take time to repair the damage to Ukrainian capabilities. Ukraine faces the daunting prospect of losing ground, campaign, date, may to Russia this summer, with the extent of their losses and the price they can exact from Russian forces for their gains remaining uncertain.

Key Takeaways

  • Ukraine's artillery units face dire situation due to ammo shortage.
  • Russia seizes 432.3 sq km of territory in Donetsk region since 2024.
  • Russian aerial glide bombs evade Ukraine's air defenses, causing heavy losses.
  • $61 billion US aid package delayed due to political wrangling in Washington.
  • Ukraine's defense relies on timely arrival of fresh ammo supplies.