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Top general says Ukraine must adapt to distracted partners and the possibility of less support and look to technology for a win

Valerii Zaluzhnyi
Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valeriy Zaluzhnyi waits before a meeting with American officials in Kyiv, Ukraine, on October 19, 2021.Gleb Garanich/Reuters
  • Gen. Valery Zaluzhny said Ukraine must adapt to challenges with partners and improve technology.

  • The Ukrainian military is facing shortages while Russia has a number of key advantages.

  • While US aid is stalled in Congress, Zaluzhny says Ukraine needs to reinvent the military with a focus on technology.

Gen. Valery Zaluzhny, the commander-in-chief of Ukraine's armed forces, says that his country must adapt to the possibility of decreased support from distracted partners and look for opportunities in technology.

"We must contend with a reduction in military support from key allies, grappling with their own political tensions,"  Zaluzhny wrote in an opinion article published by CNN Thursday. The article was written prior to expectations of his dismissal.

He acknowledged that the "stocks of missiles, air defense interceptors and ammunition for artillery is becoming exhausted" for partner nations "due to the intensity of hostilities in Ukraine."

Zaluzhny, nicknamed the "Iron General," also noted that given recent developments in the Middle East, Russia may seek to further distract partners with conflicts elsewhere.

Key challenges like the lack of aid from key Western partners is what makes Ukraine's fight against Russia unique, according to Zaluzhny, and therefore, Ukraine must adapt to its circumstances.

Further American support for Ukraine has been delayed in Congress due to contention among Republican and Democrat lawmakers. With the stalling of billions of dollars of aid in Congress, Ukraine is facing shortages. Reports indicate it is unable to fire more than 2,000 artillery shells per day.

In contrast, Russia has key industrial, material, and manpower advantages that are allowing it to efficiently resupply its military for a protracted conflict.

But amid these concerns, Zaluzhny also said there are opportunities for Ukraine.

"Perhaps the number one priority here is mastery of an entire arsenal of (relatively) cheap, modern and highly effective, unmanned vehicles and other technological means," he said.

Zaluzhny argued that the pursuit of technologies essentially "means nothing less than the wholesale redesign of battlefield operations – and the abandoning of outdated, stereotypical thinking."

The general urged the Ukrainian military to focus on creating a structure to supply military forces with cutting-edge equipment, present a new approach to combat that considers resource constraints, and reaching proficiency in new combat skills.

To withstand Russian weapons and tactics, like tanks and other threats, Zaluzhny said using more unmanned drones is crucial, and improving countermeasures may also help, though these are not the only solutions.

Overall, Zaluzhny said, Ukraine must "create a completely new state system of technological rearmament."

"We already possess capabilities to eliminate the enemy and ensure the existence of statehood," he said. "Our goal must be to seize the moment – to maximize our accumulation of the latest combat capabilities."

Read the original article on Business Insider