With just a few words and a slickly produced piece of military propaganda, the commander in chief of Ukraine’s armed forces ratcheted up speculation that a long-awaited counteroffensive by Kyiv against Russia’s occupying forces could be imminent.
“The time has come to take back what is ours,” said the official, Gen. Valerii Zaluzhyni.
The minute-long video features Ukrainian troops marching, training and apparently preparing for battle.
Some are seen using German tanks and American artillery and rocket launchers — the type of armaments Kyiv would use in a potential operation to push Russian forces out of Ukrainian territory.
The clip ends with soldiers and their commander chanting a defiant message: “Ukraine, my native motherland, Lord, our heavenly father, bless our decisive offensive, our sacred revenge, our holy victory.”
The video came online following weeks of speculation regarding when Ukraine would start its counteroffensive — or whether it might even be said to have already begun.
Despite its language, Zaluzhyni’s post made no explicit mention of an impending military operation, and there have been few details reported on the ground of specific build-ups of troops and weapons — though it should be noted that any such reporting would likely fall foul of Ukraine’s martial law restrictions.
Both Russia and Ukraine have been known to engage in disinformation campaigns to confuse enemy forces.
The counteroffensive itself has seemed imminent a handful of times over the past month.
The Ukrainian military has been spotted moving military hardware toward the front lines and carrying out attacks against Russian targets that could facilitate an offensive, including strikes on Thursday and Saturday in the Russian-occupied city of southern port city of Berdiansk.
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