Security expert: Russian offensive's first wave an utter failure

Security expert Rainer Saks.
Security expert Rainer Saks. Source: ERR

Russia's proposed talks with Ukraine are a means of buying time to prepare its second echelon to attack Ukraine again following the utter failure of the first echelon in achieving its targets, security expert Rainer Saks said on ETV news broadcast "Aktuaalne kaamera" on Sunday night.

According to Saks, Ukraine did a pretty good job of repelling attacks by Russian forces on the fourth day of the war, but that does not mean that Russia and especially President Vladimir Putin are ready to accept defeat. Talks between the two countries will likely be used to gather troops, he added.

"The first echelon's wave of attacks, which were meant to take control of Kyiv and replace the Ukrainian government — this plan has utterly failed," he explained. "Why are negotiations taking place? First and foremost in order to threaten and scare Ukraine again, and to buy time to work out the next plan. Russia is most likely bringing in its second echelon and will start attacking again with it."

Saks believes that Russia is not in fact interested in finding any solutions at these talks.

"They don't want to negotiate; they want to buy time to get their second echelon in place," he said. "Their first echelon got such a painful beating that much of it probably needs to be replaced. These negotiations are meant to throw off Ukraine's rhythm."

According to Saks, Putin ordering Russia's nuclear forces onto high alert on Sunday was in connection with two things.

"[He is] fiddling with the nuclear button primarily to deter Western countries and in hopes that maybe they will come asking for talks again," the security expert explained. "It's also definitely a reaction to Western countries' sanctions, which Russia hadn't believed would be so broadly imposed."

Commenting on Ukraine's successful and diehard resistance, Saks noted that the Ukrainians have been putting great work into this for the past eight years.

"They are no fools," he said. "They know very well how Russia plans, and they've taken advantage of the past half a year in particular, in the time that Russia has been utilizing military pressure and threats. Western countries' help is necessary, but as far as weapons go, it could have been boosted in advance already. Right now they're receiving and quickly employing weapons; the results would have been better had they received them prior to [the current] conflict."


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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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