The battalion commander of the 46th separate airmobile brigade was decided to be demoted after criticizing the Armed Forces of Ukraine in an interview with The Washington Post. Sources originally said this. “Ukrainian Truth” and editor-in-chief of the Ukrainian bureau of The Washington Post Isabelle Khurshudyan. Later this information confirmed official representative of the Air Assault Forces of Ukraine Valentin Shevchenko.
The Washington Post published an article on March 13 about the state of the Armed Forces of Ukraine on the eve of Ukraine’s counteroffensive, which is expected in the spring. The journalists spoke to several Ukrainian servicemen, including Kupol. In The Washington Post saysthat his unit fought in the Donetsk region, and retreated from Soledar in winter after the Ukrainian military was surrounded by Russian troops.
The battalion commander said he witnessed hundreds of Ukrainian soldiers abandon their positions as the mercenary groups moved forward. “Dome” connected this situation with the fact that against the background in the ranks of the Armed Forces of Ukraine there were many poorly trained recruits.
According to him, during the year of the war, out of 500 soldiers in his battalion, about 100 were killed and another 400 were wounded, which led to the replenishment of the unit with inexperienced recruits.
“I get 100 new fighters and they don’t even give me time to train them. They tell me: “Take them into battle.” (And in combat) recruits just drop everything and run. That’s all. Do you understand why? Because the soldier does not shoot. I ask him: “Why?” And he says: “I am afraid of the sound of a gunshot.” And for some reason, he never even threw a grenade, ”Kupol told reporters, among other things, noting also the lack of ammunition on the front line.
In an interview with The Washington Post, the battalion commander explained his decision to speak out in the hope that the United States would provide better training for the Ukrainian military before the counteroffensive. Isabel Khurshudyan, editor-in-chief of the Ukrainian bureau of the newspaper notedthat before the interview, she discussed with the battalion commander that his statements could damage his career. Dome felt “it was worth the risk,” she said.
“There is always faith in a miracle. Either it will be a bloody meat grinder and corpses, or it will be a professional counteroffensive. There are two options. In any case, there will be a counteroffensive, ”Kupol said in an interview.
Ukrainian edition “Country” writesthat the Washington Post article “made a lot of noise in Ukraine.” Her, in particular, commented Secretary of the National Security Council of Ukraine Oleksiy Danilov, saying that the information of journalists is not true.
“Yes, there is a difficult situation. We have been waging war against a large country for a year now, but not in a smart way. We knew it would be difficult for us. But now to undermine the situation by providing information that does not correspond to reality is not a very pleasant thing, ”he said on Ukrainian television.
The representative of the Airborne Assault Forces of Ukraine, Valentin Shevchenko, also said that the “Dome” had disseminated “inaccurate information” in an interview, after which the military conducted an internal check. According to Shevchenko, the battalion commander talked to journalists without the permission of the leadership, which is prohibited by the rules.
“The losses announced by the serviceman during the fighting in the unit subordinate to him are significantly overestimated. At the same time, such information has the status of restricted access, ”added the Airborne Assault Forces.
“Domes” will be appointed to a position in one of the training centers of the Airborne Assault Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, Shevchenko specified. In response to the decision of the command, the serviceman wrote a letter of resignation. In the commentary to Hromadske, the battalion commander declaredthat the commander of the landing troops, Major General Maxim Mirgorodsky, explained the demotion by the fact that if the “Dome” claims poor military training, then let him train them himself.
How notes Ukrayinska Pravda is not the first case of a transfer in the 46th brigade after the military spoke with journalists. Formerly Sergeant of the Airborne Troops Alexander Pogrebisky after interview about the situation in Soledar in January 2023 was transferred to the position of chief instructor of the company in the training center. “Military leaders do not like the truth and do not want to solve systemic problems,” the interlocutors of the publication noted.
Yury Butusov, editor-in-chief of the Ukrainian publication Censor.net spoke in defense of the Dome, which, in his opinion, “takes care of the lives of soldiers and requires changes in training in order to conduct a successful counteroffensive.” The journalist hopes that the command will reconsider its decision and reinstate the battalion commander in his position.
“We must defeat Russia both at the front and in our minds – and instead of shutting our mouths, we need to start thinking and acting in order to improve ourselves daily,” Butusov added.
We talked in detail about what is known about the state of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in the podcast “What happened”
Western media write either about the weakening of the Ukrainian army, or (on the contrary) about its readiness to go on the offensive soon. What exactly do we know about the state of the Armed Forces?