Russia has been using up more munitions recently in order to both overwhelm and confuse Ukraine's air defense, an unnamed U.S. official familiar with the matter told CNN.
In the early hours of May 16, Russia conducted a mass attack against Ukraine, launching hypersonic Kinzhal missiles, Kalibr cruise missiles, and Iskander missiles. Ukraine's military reported shooting down all 18 of the missiles.
The attack may have damaged a U.S.-provided Patriot missile system, CNN earlier reported.
The U.S. official told CNN that Russia launched the attacks from several directions at once, targeting command and control centers in Kyiv and other critical locations.
The large-scale attack may have been an attempt to delay Ukraine's counteroffensive, but that they may in fact work to Ukraine's advantage as the attacks deplete Russia's limited supply of precision munitions, the official said.