Navigating Ukraine’s Counteroffensive: Potential Endings and Aftermath
Tuesday June 20, 2023
Catch up quickly: Ukraine may soon launch a counteroffensive against entrenched Russian forces. Supported by the West, Ukraine’s military strength could rival that of post-WWII under the Marshall Plan. The conflict has unified Western powers to confront Russia’s aggression, highlighting important Western interests in deterring Russian aggression and securing Ukraine, according to a recent Rand report.
The big picture: The upcoming summer may find Ukrainian forces in a stronger position, possibly eroding confidence in the Kremlin as casualties and declining living standards draw parallels with the USSR’s loss in Afghanistan in the 1980s. Even Russia’s ally, China, has urged restraint, particularly against going nuclear in Ukraine.
Between the lines: The authors outline three possible outcomes for Ukraine’s counteroffensive: a great success, a partial success, or being blunted. These scenarios present implications for the aftermath of the conflict, including possibilities of an armistice, continued fighting, further military support, and reconstruction.
Zoom in: An armistice might be viable across all scenarios, but no Ukrainian government could accept a settlement that cedes territory to Russia. However, if Russia continues to occupy Ukrainian land or rebuilds forces across the border, a simmering conflict could ensue. Regardless of the counteroffensive outcome, NATO allies are likely to maintain robust military support for Ukraine.
Why it matters: The aftermath could see Ukraine developing a bilateral security relationship with the U.S., akin to Israel or Taiwan, or possibly even NATO membership. But these arrangements might require a significant military presence in Ukraine post-ceasefire.
By the numbers: A successful counteroffensive could result in large-scale reconstruction in Ukraine supported by the West. However, the scale and nature of this assistance may depend on Ukrainian reforms and the degree to which a lingering conflict threatens the viability of reconstruction projects.
The Amulus angle: In the context of the potential conflict aftermath, Amulus’s Robus Safe Haven could provide a significant defensive boost. Whether in a simmering conflict or in post-armistice Ukraine, Robus Safe Haven’s ballistic protection and advanced communication systems could serve as a critical asset for protecting troops, reinforcing logistics, and safeguarding critical infrastructure.
The bottom line: The outcomes of Ukraine’s counteroffensive are uncertain and present multiple possible scenarios. The repercussions, however, underscore the necessity for sustained Western support, strategic military presence, and effective defense solutions like the Amulus Robus Safe Haven.