According to the Washington Post, many citizens of Ukraine are adopting a darker mood about the war with Russia, and national unity is beginning to fray. The change in sentiment comes as Kiev’s spring counteroffensive fails to retake significant territory despite surging casualties.
“Ukrainians, much in need of good news, are simply not getting any,” the Washington Post reported Thursday. One Ukrainian, Alla Blyzniuk, interviewed by the outlet, said, “[before] people were united.” Now, she described, a sense of collective “disappointment.”
The sense of despair is driven by massive casualties in Kiev’s counteroffensive. Blyzniuk said that most soldiers sent to the front die in just two to three days. Last week, Politico reported that Kiev had committed 150,000 troops to fight along three fronts. Nevertheless, the Pentagon admits that Ukrainian forces have failed to make any significant gains.
Washington publicly claims it has provided Kiev with everything Ukraine needs to wage a successful counteroffensive. However, Western officials admitted to the Wall Street Journal that Ukrainian forces lacked critical equipment. “When Ukraine launched its big counteroffensive this spring, Western military officials knew Kyiv didn’t have all the training or weapons—from shells to warplanes—that it needed to dislodge Russian forces.” The report continued, “But they hoped Ukrainian courage and resourcefulness would carry the day. They Haven’t.”
Anna Oliinyk, a Ukrainian soldier, told the Post that she hoped the losses would be worth the price. “We’ve got all these guys coming back from the front line without limbs,” she said. “I want the price they paid to be reasonable. Otherwise it’s just useless, what they went through.”
Anna’s husband, a Ukrainian soldier who lost a leg, told the Post he would not enlist if he could make the choice again, adding that Kiev is sending untrained soldiers to the front lines. “They are taking everyone and sending them to the front line without proper preparation,” he said. “I don’t want to be in the company of unmotivated people.”