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Ex top NATO officer Di Paola: “Ukraine has retaken the initiative from the enemy”

Ukraine’s counteroffensive gains momentum against Russian forces, but concerns arise over potential war fatigue in Western backers, according to former NATO official Giampaolo Di Paola.
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The Ukrainian Army continues to advance on the southern front. Credit: Ukraine’s General Staff via Facebook.
Ex top NATO officer Di Paola: “Ukraine has retaken the initiative from the enemy”

In an interview with RFE/RL’s Georgian Service, former NATO military committee chairman Giampaolo Di Paola says Ukraine has seized the initiative from Russian forces, but as its counteroffensive slowly grinds on, the risk of war fatigue in the West grows.

Di Paola says the Ukrainian counteroffensive, not moving as fast as some NATO allies expected, has now reached a critical phase before the terrain becomes muddy during the autumn rains.

“What has been achieved is that Ukraine has retaken the initiative from the enemy. We saw the long-awaited counteroffensive finally happening,” he said, “But what has not been achieved yet is a significant regaining of the territory from Russians, a significant breakthrough (the interview was recorded before the Robotyne breakthrough, – Ed.), a weak point in Russian defense lines that the Ukrainians could exploit.”

Di Paola believes that now is a very critical phase, “because the longer that combat drags on, the more possible it becomes that we will see war fatigue in some of the countries supporting Ukraine.”

As the biggest difficulty for the Ukrainian counteroffensive, he sees the fact that Ukrainians have to conduct offensive operations without air superiority.

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