Skip to content
Edit post

Danilov: Counteroffensive hopes did not come true

by Martin Fornusek December 12, 2023 1:08 PM 2 min read
National Security and Defense Council Secretary Oleksii Danilov speaks with the Kyiv Independent in his office on Jan. 30, 2023. (Danylo Pavlov)
This audio is created with AI assistance

Support independent journalism in Ukraine. Join us in this fight.

Become a member Support us just once

Ukraine's counteroffensive hopes did not come true, but that does not mean Kyiv will not eventually achieve victory, National Security and Defense Council Secretary Oleksii Danilov said in a comment for the BBC on Dec. 12.

The months-long counteroffensive launched by Ukrainian forces in the summer achieved only modest advances and largely failed to reach set strategic goals.

"In May, every citizen in our country wanted the war to end quickly. There were hopes, but they didn't come true," Danilov conceded.

The long-anticipated campaign aimed to regain large swathes of territory captured by Russia in 2022 and to reach the Sea of Azov, cutting off Crimea from the eastern occupied regions and Russia.

Facing dense Russian defensive networks, Ukrainian forces managed to liberate only 14 villages in Donetsk and Zaporizhzhia oblasts.

As hostilities dialed down by December, top Ukrainian officials acknowledged that the counteroffensive did not achieve the desired results.

Ukraine's commander-in-chief, Valerii Zaluzhnyi, pointed out that despite NATO training for Ukrainian soldiers, the campaign was complicated by the lack of air superiority, a key element in NATO's doctrine.

"There hasn't been a war like the one we have in our country - not in the 20th nor the 21st century," Danilov commented, adding that old war textbooks, including NATO ones, "should be returned to the archives."

He nevertheless added that Ukraine would continue in its efforts to liberate its territory from Russian occupation.

"I can say for sure that we won't stop. We will continue fighting for our freedom, for our independence."

As Ukraine braces for another year of war, further support from the U.S., Kyiv's leading military donor, is being stalled by political infighting in Congress.

While Danilov hopes that Ukraine receives the aid before Christmas, he added that if it arrives a "bit later, then it shouldn't be made into a tragedy."

The White House urged Congress to pass the funding request that includes $61 billion for Ukraine before the end of the year so as not to threaten Ukraine's ability to defend itself.

Francis Farrell: Ukraine could still lose the war. Let’s get some things straight
This November has been a particularly grim one here in Ukraine. Over the past month, two media sensations in big Western magazines served as a sober wake-up call about the state of the war. First, Simon Shuster’s profile in TIME magazine on Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s “lonely fight”
Before you skip this banner, we want to tell you something…

The Kyiv Independent doesn’t depend on a wealthy owner or an oligarch — in 2023, 80% of our revenue was from reader contributions . It’s thanks to them that we don’t have to rely on a single owner.

Support us now and help maintain our independent model and keep our articles free for everyone. Your contributions allow us to cover journalists’ salaries, report from the front lines, and fund projects like our War Crimes Investigations Unit.

visa masterCard americanExpress

News Feed

11:09 AM

EU Council announces 14th round of sanctions against Russia.

The new package adds 116 individuals and entities to the sanctions list, and adds a number of additional measures, including the prohibition for any EU facilities to be involved in the transshipment of Russian liquified natural gas (LNG) to any third-party countries.
Ukraine Daily
News from Ukraine in your inbox
Ukraine news
Please, enter correct email address
10:09 PM

Ukraine working on securing more air defense, Zelensky says.

President Volodymyr Zelensky, in his regular evening address on June 23, said that Ukraine is continuing to work on securing more air defense systems, and that the next weeks in June and July should be "no less productive" than May and the first half of June.
8:47 PM

No point in peace talks, General Budanov says.

Ukraine's Military Intelligence Chief Kyrylo Budanov said in an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer published June 23 that peace talks are pointless because the only option is to reclaim occupied territory.
MORE NEWS

Editors' Picks

Enter your email to subscribe
Please, enter correct email address
Subscribe
* indicates required
* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required
* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Subscribe
* indicates required

Subscribe

* indicates required
Successfuly subscribed
Thank you for signing up for this newsletter. We’ve sent you a confirmation email.