John Kirby, the Pentagon press secretary, said U.S. officials assess that the convoy, as well as the broader Russian thrust toward Kyiv from the north, is largely stalled. He said the Russians appear to be regrouping and reassessing the reasons for their slow progress, “and how to make up for lost time.” He said they likely did not anticipate such problems or the extent of the Ukrainian resistance.
Eight days into the war, the expanse of Russian supply trucks, troops and weapons has been plagued with fuel and food shortages and logistical challenges, including weather and mud. Ukrainian troops have managed to attack and incapacitate some vehicles at the front, creating a traffic jam, but the Russians have largely shielded the convoy from attack by air, according to Western officials and analysts.
The convoy’s lack of measurable progress has triggered questions about the short- and long-term implications and what it says about Russia’s war planning. But will it affect the war’s outcome?
Mason Clark, a Russia analyst at the Institute for the Study of War, says the convoy saga may be emblematic of shortcomings in the Russian army, which is relatively inexperienced in the execution of large-scale operations that combine air, ground and naval forces. But it is unlikely to prevent Russia from prevailing against the outgunned and outnumbered Ukrainian defenders.
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