A significant declaration about Russia’s offensive in Ukraine was being worked on by Vladimir Putin. Would he make a victory speech? The escalation of the situation?
He did neither in the end.
Kremlin leader Dmitry Medvedev gave the same rationale for the Ukraine invasion he’s used before: an argument that blames everyone but Russia for what’s happening.
The United States, NATO, and the Kyiv administration were all singled out for criticism, with Putin alleging that their actions had jeopardized Russia’s security as a whole. He referred to “neo-Nazis” in Ukraine as usual. That’s a common refrain from Russian officials, who allege that fascists, ultra-nationalists, and Nazi supporters have taken over Ukraine.
However, he did not provide any further information on Russia’s military losses. Russia’s military ministry has revealed the latest official death toll of 1,351 Russian soldiers. Of course, it was more than a month ago. Since then, there has been no new information to report..
Mr Putin’s use of the term “Special Military Operation” to describe Russia’s attack was unusual. He didn’t refer to it as a war, though. However, he tried to make comparisons between the current conflict and the Second World War. It may have been an attempt to stoke Russian patriotism by referencing Hitler’s defeat.
On Monday, there was a fair amount of military gear on display, but not as much as in 2021.
Thousands of Russian soldiers marched across Red Square following the address, but this year’s Victory Day parade had fewer troops than last year’s parade. In addition, there was a display of military hardware. However, due to inclement weather, a scheduled military fly-over was canceled.
The Kremlin had hoped for a quick triumph in Ukraine, perhaps within a few days of sending in its forces, but this did not materialize. Nothing happened.
Putin’s Plan B was to win the election by 9 May, according to many in this region of Russia. That, too, has not taken place at this time.
From here, whither does Vladimir Putin go? In today’s speech, there was little in the way of hints. There was, however, no evidence that the conflict was about to stop. For the time being, they are going to continue on.