Ukraine expects the Russian command to panic when the anticipated Ukrainian counteroffensive begins, Deputy Defense Minister Volodymyr Havrylov told British newspaper The Independent in an article published on May 7.
Havrylov entertained the possiblity that events this month or the next would lead to a rapid collapse of Russian military strategy, army or economy.
The official said that Ukraine's defense of Bakhmut was a "key moment" in Ukraine's counteroffensive preparations and heralded military catastrophe for Russia.
However, Havrylov had also made overly-optimistic predictions in November, when he said that Ukrainian troops might enter Crimea in December and the war would finish up by spring 2023.
According to leaker U.S. intelligence documents, Washington believes that an end to Russia's war against Ukraine is unlikely in 2023.