The race for Kiev: Plans presented by Kremlin military chiefs show how 130,000 Russian forces will try to overthrow the Ukrainian government in a ‘multi-axis’ invasion from Belarus and Crimea before arriving from the east
- Russian troops could embark on a ‘race to Kiev’ to overthrow the Ukrainian government, according to Kremlin plans
- Western officials fear Putin will push to install a pro-Russian regime after toppling the Ukrainian government
- More Russian troops, possibly 20,000 more, are added to the invasion force which currently stands at 130,000.
Russian troops will embark on a “race to Kiev” to overthrow the Ukrainian government, according to plans presented by Kremlin military leaders.
Tens of thousands of Putin’s troops will push south into Ukraine to target the capital and install a pro-Russian regime, Western officials fear.
There will also be a “multi-axis” invasion by Russian forces. Troops will enter the country from Belarus and Crimea before converging on eastern Ukraine.
Their mission will be to line up to prevent Ukrainian forces from the east of the country from returning to defend Kiev.
Since speed of movement was essential to Russian strategy, lighter vehicles and weapon systems were apparently selected for the ground offensive.
Other Russian troops, possibly another 20,000, are added to the invasion force which currently numbers 130,000 men.
Russian troops will embark on a “race to Kiev” to overthrow the Ukrainian government, according to plans presented by Kremlin military leaders. Tens of thousands of Putin’s troops will push south into Ukraine to target the capital and install a pro-Russian regime, Western officials fear. There will also be a “multi-axis” invasion by Russian forces. Troops will enter the country from Belarus and Crimea before converging on eastern Ukraine
Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu in Moscow, Russia February 14, 2022
A source said: ‘The buildup of soldiers and equipment is unprecedented and very alarming. It is a force built for the purpose of invasion. An estimated 14 more Russian brigades are heading towards the Ukrainian border.
“The logistics are also in place, the medical reinforcement as well as the air and naval means. We have seen the build-up of Russian ships in the Atlantic, the Black Sea and the Mediterranean. Holidays were also canceled for many Russian units.
“In total, you envision 60% of Russia’s overall combat power being committed to this operation.
“The ground threat was also made more powerful by the disposition of their attack forces. Russia essentially traded mass for speed, knowing it had to get to Kyiv as quickly as possible.
“They must also quickly bring other units into eastern Ukraine to form a barrier preventing Ukrainian units from pushing back west to save the capital.”
According to sources, detailed invasion plans will be presented to President Putin shortly, who has yet to make a final decision on the invasion.
Putin is expected to meet with his defense minister Sergey Shoygu and Russian intelligence chief Alexander Bortnikov before committing to war.
Indeed, the UK, US and EU will launch a blitzkrieg against the Russian banking system and financial services sector if Russia invades.
Kyiv is lightly defended as most Ukrainian troops have been stationed in the east to fight Russian separatists since 2014.
The Ukrainian capital is only 240 kilometers via the E95 highway from the southern border of Belarus – a journey that Russian tanks could complete in six hours.
A source added: “Once in Kiev, the Russians are reluctant to send their troops into situations where they could fight street by street. Such a close battle would likely result in heavy casualties, both military and civilian. The Russians don’t want to get bogged down.
Russian army T-72B3 main battle tanks take part in a military exercise in Saint Petersburg, Russia, February 14, 2022.
In this photo taken from a video provided by the press service of the Russian Ministry of Defense on Monday, February 14, 2022, soldiers train at the Obuz-Lesnovsky training ground during the military exercises Union Courage-2022 Russia- Belarus in Belarus
“They are hoping for a ‘bloodless coup’ to overthrow the democratically elected government and bring their people into it without much struggle.
“They are probably underestimating the will of Ukrainians to fight for their country, they are not just going to turn around. So it could get very bloody.
While state-controlled media claim the crisis is NATO’s fault, there is little or no appetite in Russia for conflict with its neighbor.
“Russians see Ukrainians as being like them, many Russians also have Ukrainian parents. There is little opposition to a possible war due to the Kremlin’s control of the media.
“That could change quickly if a lot of people are killed,” a source said. “A real invasion would also prove costly for Russia financially and politically, as it would suffer heavy economic sanctions and become a pariah state.”