US says Russia replacing war commander reflects 'systemic challenges'
A decision by the Russian Defense Ministry to replace General Sergei Surovikin with Chief of the General Staff Valeriy Gerasimov as commander of Russia's war against Ukraine indicates "systemic challenges" for Moscow, Pentagon Press Secretary Pat Ryder said during a briefing on Jan. 12.
"We've talked about some of those things in terms of its logistics problems, command and control problems, sustainment problems, morale, and the large failure to obtain the strategic objectives that they've set for themselves," Ryder said.
"I think that the world would rather see Russia focus on withdrawing from Ukraine and saving innocent lives versus spending time on numerous management reshuffles, and Russian soldiers and their families would probably like to see that too," the press secretary added.
Earlier in the day, the U.K. Defense Ministry shared a similar statement, saying that such personnel shift is a sign the Kremlin is aware it is failing to meet its goals in Ukraine.
"This is a significant development in Russian President Vladimir Putin's approach to managing the war," the British Defense Ministry wrote on Twitter.