Upcoming battle could determine Ukraine war

If Ukraine can retake the Black Sea port of Kherson it would boost its military's moral and badly shake up the Kremlin.

By

Columnists

August 8, 2022 - 12:39 PM

It’s difficult to fathom the amount of death and destruction Ukrainians have suffered at the hands of Russians over the past six months. Pictured here is an elderly woman walking past a school partially destroyed as a result of missile strike in town of Kostyantynivka, Donetsk region on July 25. (Anatolii Stepanov/AFP via Getty Images/TNS)

SHEVCHENKOVE, Ukraine — A mounting Ukrainian counteroffensive in this southern Black Sea region is building up to a crucial battle that could shape the outcome of the entire war by the end of September.

That is why I was recently rattling down the road from Mykolaiv in an armored Ukrainian military van moving toward the Russian-occupied city of Kherson, as Ukrainian Major Andre (his nom de guerre) explained why the coming battle to retake the city will be critical.

If Ukraine can retake the Black Sea port of Kherson, the only major Ukrainian city that the Russians occupy, it would smash Russian ambitions to seize all of southern Ukraine, including the entire seacoast and the famed port city of Odesa. It would boost the Ukrainian military’s morale and its prospects for regaining more of Ukraine’s southern lands — while badly shaking up the Kremlin.

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