The war in Ukraine isn’t going to be over for a long time. Not the conventional war, anyway. This is much in the same way the war in Iraq wasn’t over when George W. Bush declared victory against the Hussein regime on May 1, 2003, from aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln.
No, I see a protracted slugfest coming. Even if Russia defeats Ukraine’s conventional forces, hostilities won’t end there. That’s not me talking; that’s from a current member of the Ukrainian Special Forces.
He believes a violent and organized struggle will continue, led by Ukrainian Special Forces soldiers.
Ukrainians have spent the last eight years planning, training, and equipping themselves to resist a Russian occupation. They realize that no US or NATO forces will come to their rescue on the battlefield in a war against Russia. Their long-term strategy doesn’t depend on turning back a Russian invasion but rather on bleeding Moscow to make an occupation untenable.
In an interview he did with Vice News last March on the condition of anonymity, an unnamed Ukrainian Special Forces soldier has a message for the Russians: “Welcome to Hell.”
The operator has spent the past few weeks hunting Russian saboteurs. Ukrainian President Zelensky addressed his nation regarding them last month. He told of how undercover Spetnaz (Russian Special Forces) were conducting targeted killings and insurgent activities in his country. Some have been caught wearing civilian clothing, trying to blend in with the populace. Some were caught wearing uniforms bearing the flag of Ukraine, and others were marking buildings for airstrikes.
The Ukrainian soldier went on record saying:
“The enemy should know first: They are not welcome. Come on our land and in every window, in every building we have ears and eyes and sometimes even hands to destroy them.”
According to the source, Ukraine Special Operations Forces have been entrusted with organizing and implementing any future insurgency. “Special operation forces are in charge of preparation and coordination of national resistance,” he said. “So any insurgents and the resistance, we are in charge of that.”
And he’s not the only one talking about the oncoming insurgency. The head of Ukraine’s military intelligence, Gen. Kyrylo Budanov, announced last March:
“The season of a total Ukrainian guerrilla safari will soon begin. Then there will be one relevant scenario left for the Russians: how to survive.”
Contingencies in preparation for guerilla warfare include the placement of sizable weapons caches in strategic locations around the country, creating agent networks as points of contact for future action, and coordination with bordering friendly nations, such as Poland.
There has been considerable planning regarding long-term resistance for quite a while now. Ukraine has quite an interesting plan posted here for all to see on the Center National Resistance website. I love the second and third lines of text on the site: “Together we will turn the lives of the occupiers into hell. Join!”
The manual contains this bit of sage advice:
“Чим більше людей приєднується до спротиву, тим скоріше окупант зазнає нищівної поразки.” This can be translated as, “The more people join in the fight, the more likely the invaders will suffer a crushing defeat.”
I have the utmost faith in the fighting spirit of the Ukrainian people. They have the means, motive, and opportunity to drive out the Russians and provide them with “a crushing defeat.”
There are reports out of Ukraine right now of Ukrainian civilians poisoning food and alcohol that is stolen by Russian troops, Molotov cocktails being thrown at Russian vehicles, and even a recent ambush of a Russian column using a series of roadside IEDs that were remotely and simultaneously detonated to what appeared to be a good effect.
It’s was only a matter of time.