President Volodymyr Zelensky of Ukraine has announced that Ukraine’s long-expected counter-offensive has begun. What does this mean? It’s widely presumed that Ukraine seeks to regain its eastern territories lost in the initial invasion and even the Crimean peninsula, which was lost in 2014.
Stephen Sestanovich, CFR Expert, states, “Ukraine remains intent on wresting Crimea back from Russia, but doing so would be difficult, and the peninsula could become a bargaining chip in future diplomatic talks'' despite unprecedented Western support, which has gained groans from both sides of the political aisle. It remains uncertain when or if Ukraine could regain control of these areas from an entrenched and voluminous Russian military.
This counter-offensive holds more stakes than simply the land gains. Suppose this counter-offensive proves anything less than successful. In that case, you can expect to hear arguments to restrict aid and advocating for a peace deal to grow louder. Unfortunately for Ukraine, that would likely mean ceding more territory to Russia and constantly looking over their shoulders for the next strike.
We’ll update you as this story develops.