Bill Roggio: Who is really winning the war in Ukraine?

Freddie Sayers meets Bill Roggio.

Listen to the podcast version:

Read the accompanying article:

Getting an accurate picture of who is winning the war in Ukraine has become increasingly difficult in the information age. Log onto Twitter and there are images of burnt out Russian tanks being towed away by Ukrainian farmers and hostage-style videos featuring Russians POWs expressing regret over the invasion; meanwhile, Western news outlets are littered with tales of doughty Ukrainian protesters sending the Russian enemy into retreat and Kyivans discovering a newfound unity in the face of war.

But is this a fair depiction of what’s really occurring on the ground? Freddie Sayers sat down with Bill Roggio, a leading military analyst at the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies, to discuss.

// Timecodes //

00:00 – 00:40 – Introduction
00:40 – 02:31 – Is the Russian army doing better than we think?
02:31 – 05:59 – Can we really know the number of casualties in this war?
05:59 – 11:33 – Bill Roggio and Freddie analyse a New York Times map of the Russia-Ukraine war
11:33 – 13:21 – Have the Russians yet established a land bridge between Crimea and the Donbas region in Ukraine?
13:21 – 17:31 – Why is the Russian army encircling rather than just taking certain cities?
17:31 – 19:42 – Are the Russian’s amphibious forces being held back?
19:42 – 23:09 – What happened to the 40-mile Russian column?
23:09 – 30:31 – What is Bill Roggio’s current assessment of the Russian forces and the state of the war?
30:31 – 32:03 – Who is winning the war in Ukraine?
32:03 – Concluding thoughts

#Russia #Ukraine #Kyiv

Written by UnHerd


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  1. A contrarian view (so, popular with people who like to be contrary), but probably not accurate. Too many sources (not all of them biased towards Western preferences) are declaring Putin's war a shambles. The reason Ukraine as a whole is not more bombed out than it is is because Putin's army was always way too small to take and hold an entire country. But the devastation wrought in Mariupol should be enough to convince us that he's not been holding back since he realised he had a real fight on his hands. The 40m convoy that was approaching Kyiv is unlikely to have been a decoy – that's tying up an awful lot of materiel to throw the enemy off the scent. What we're now hearing from the Kremlin is that phase one of the 'special operation' has been successfully completed (assuming the plan was to fail to take the capital and have a whole load of tanks and missiles in the wrong part of the country) and that Russian troops will now concentrate on the Donbas region. Could that suggest the Donbas was Putin's only real objective all along? Maybe. But I doubt it. More likely, Putin, having being comprehensively resisted in northern Ukraine, has decided to try and get a quicker victory in the south and pretend that was his only intention right from the start. His grand ambition to conquer the whole of Ukraine looks to have been shelved (for now, at least) and he now realises he needs to get out without losing face. Best estimates (not the Ukrainian ones) show that Russia has now lost more personnel in the last 4 weeks than the USA has lost in all conflicts (and there have ben many) since Vietnam. Russia is not 'marginally winning'. It's losing, but can still probably take the Donbas – again, for now. But this could rage on for years if Zelensky refuses to cede territory. Belarus is still a bit of dark horse in this, lurking on the northern border. It's not over yet, but maybe Putin now wishes it was.

  2. Let's be honest. The western governments absolutely know the truth of the war and that it's going fairly well for the Russians. We in the west are being bombarded with pure propaganda.

  3. all those who claim the know that the Russians are wanting to take Kiev are the same ones who said there were WMDs in Iraq.

    the military has a long memory and have no intention of trying to take on a capital city.

    if anything they intend to take over the historically Russian areas which can be seen in the voting records, pro western Ukraine is an inland enclave.

    Take away the polish areas and it becomes even smaller.

    this is a western created war yet again they egged Ukraine on to retake the seperatist regions. Russia while choosing not to absorb those regions have had enough

    I think Russia has held back as they themselves admitted to, they never went all in choosing to use their Syrian approach and the west knows it full well. The Russian military is designed to take large losses to achieve their goals while the west gets its panties knotted at a few dozen body bags.

    meanwhile the west is actively supporting and arming Nazi inspired armed units. thousands of javelin and stinger missiles are in their hands to be sold overseas – nobody seems to remember the Gladio attrocities of the 80s. and nw we have IS members from syria on the Ukraine side. I see that ending well.

    if you want to see who the US will be fighting in twenty years time see who they are funding now.

  4. The thing about the east front is that Ukrainians cannot withdraw their forces to the west anymore – the roads are controlled from the air and there is probably not enough fuel for a large march. That’s why they are fighting so desperately, and also because they are the regiments that were shelling Donetsk for 8 years and they know that they would not be forgiven if they surrendered.

  5. Tactically, the Ukrainians are holding out for now, Strategically ,however Russia is in control that is how I see this up to now. The Ukraine forces in the East are about to face a Stalingrad encirclement and need to retreat ASAP.

  6. 32:22 he has been accused of being pro Kremlin simply for the fact that he doesn't adhere to that bullshit propaganda we are fed with in every single detail. Because what else? He is obviously not neutral, he is obviously pro Ukarine and anti Russia in this conflict. He just isn't shouting loud enough about how Russia sucks. That's apparently enought to be pro Kremlin nowadays.

  7. I follow a YouTube site called Speak the Truth. It probably has the most detailed and accurate map as you will see as a civilian without without a security clearance. It's updated every day and analyzed by a knowledgable ex military who saw action in Iraq and Afghanistan.

  8. |/
    Why anyone residing in a First World/Free World nation would choose to support a Second World nation such as Russia, and endorse the ideological authoritarianism and discriminatory persecutions such pathetically despotic regime's inherently utilize in order to crush and scapegoat all minority religious beliefs, minority populations, and oppositional ideologies/political movements, is simply beyond my understanding… LoL. Either they are just blatantly ignorant regarding world history & geopolitics, or they are traitorous "useful idiots" whom have decided that their own pitifully weak-willed submission to buy into the radical right's ideological rhetorical spin & outright fallacious propaganda is more important to them than the values of individual liberties, freedom of speech, human rights, and the basic democratic principles which are taken for granted here in the West… and pretty clearly these foundational values are being taken for granted inside of Australia as well… at least it appears so to the rest of the world thanks to what the narratives are coming from all these corporate owned media/cable news outlets broadcasting from Australia… Like the one's which that vile bastard Rupert Murdock has created to subvert & undermine democracy around the world, and spread division & misinformation on his networks ~ ie. Such as your Sky news and Fox news corporate media outlets, with all of their transparently biased and misleading reporting, much less the hate-filled, intolerance spewing forth from the ass kissing lips of cowardly fools like Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity, Pierce Morgan, ect.
    The hard truth is that the modern conservative ideological philosophy is not an ideology at all, but instead a cult of personality posing as a real populist movement… spreading intolerance and racism by dehumanizing and coloring the chosen scapegoat of the day as being parasitic subhuman savages. He is scum, and all of those easily manipulated & indoctrinated by his media outlets around the globe in the former British colonies, or the "Anglo-Saxon" founded Christian nations as his TV propagandists like to portray them, are vile and ignorant bigots too… fully delusional imbeciles whom have absolutely no knowledge of history or understanding of how this world functions in the modern age of trade globalization. Isolationism, Tribalism, Conservatism, Fascism, Despotism, totalitarianism, Racism, Authoritarianism, Elitism, Populism, Nationalism, Religious Fanaticism, and good old fashioned scapegoating via otherism are the predominant characteristics of almost all right wing zealots in this day and age, clearly… LoL. Those things are NOT good traits for folks to be embodying or advocating for… Those things are sickeningly vile and wholly self-serving evils, and that is just the, period, point blank, absolute facts regarding this matter.
    Ya don't dig what I'm saying my friend, well ok… cool enough I guess as it IS your own prerogative whether or not you choose to be a full on ignorant whiney little bitch, and a full-time cunt that is an asshole to other folks based upon your objectively fallacious ideological indoctrinations, I suppose… it doesn't, however, ever mean that you are even remotely acceptable to, or will be tolerated by any human being's that are actually decent & empathetic though my man… LoL. Ostracization and shunning are the best that await such ignorant and hateful individuals though, I'll bet ya on that.

  9. Actually Putin and Russians are not targeting civillians but actually saving them. The fact is it is Nazi's the ones that are doing the killing detaining and torturing of Ukrainians. This is a proxy war for U S it wants it dragged on and on for years to drain Russia. Russia wanted to come in kill all the nazis and for Ukraine to go back to neutral the way it was before the U.S coup and the nazis murdering russian speaking Ukrainians for the security of Russia. The U.S plan since 2014 u.s/nazi coup was to make this war happen and just as Albright said the lives of half a million iraqi children was a price she was willing to pay. Her hegemonic empire today is happy to drag this war on till the last Ukrainian falls and Ukraines earth is scorched. The propaganda from the west is relentless and the mass formation has everyone thinking a lie is true. Russia will not give up their security to the evil empire. Russians and Ukrainians are brothers sisters family. As the western media has done to us it is deviding Ukraine and backing the worst of humanity in nazi's and terrorists to overthrow elected govts this time their target is Russia and Putin. The U.S has no friends or enemies only allies and when interests change allies become enimies enemies become friends. One thing is always true its innocent civillians that pay the price around the world.

  10. Man, this guy's analysis has not proved accurate at all. I commented here at the time that his conclusions made no sense, and here we are, and three days after this was posted, the Russians are now saying their goals outside of the Donbas have been "accomplished", and now they will focus on the "eastern provinces". Yet reports tell us more troops and equipment are being marshalled in Belarus to be sent south toward Kiev. This is not, as some think, an attempt to reinvigorate the encirclement of Kiev. That encirclement is impossible with the state of Russian forces. Rather, these fresh forces made of conscripts and old equipment are an attempt to prevent encirclement by Ukrainian forces. The Russians parked north of Kiev are in a desperate situation. If they aren't quickly reinforced they will soon find themselves surrounded and forced to surrender. I suspect we'll see mass surrenders even with these reinforcements. We're talking thousands of Russian soldiers and large amounts of equipment. Everything is pretty much the opposite of what this "expert" concluded less than a week ago.

  11. "Second gear" – Russia stops trying not to hurt civilians and infrastructure. Comes to city > announces evacuation for civilians for X days > all who didn't evacuate are considered military personnel > brings city back to stone age.

  12. He keeps saying Russian forces but there are 1000`s from the DPR and LPR militias involved. Is this not a civil war (Ukrainian vs Ukrainian) with military backing from Russia on one side and USA/EU equipment and monetary support on the other side.

  13. Bruh shut up. Ukraine war against Donetsk and Luhansk wasn’t illegal??? They didn’t kill thousands of civilians??? R u out of ur mind???

  14. There are, I'm afraid, several fallacies embedded in this analysis, the biggest of which is that of the supposedly overwhelming might of the Russians. The notion of an extremely mighty Russian army was a fallacy created by USA in order to justify the cold war (and it's been revived now in order to justify this war, too, and present Putin as the only culprit). To many of us, there was never any doubt that USSR would lose the cold war, and it is quite obvious now that USA would like this new war to last as long as possible.

  15. Ubderestumating russia has proven fatal for the dictator with small miustache. Russia is now learning and garhering experience. Fact that it isnr a threat for europe we knew before. They never even neant to be. Russia is not strong enough. It is on a defensive since like forever.

  16. I'm wondering instead of Putin and the Russian army being humiliated on the world stage for weakness maybe they're being more strategic? In the beginning Putin said he was going after Nazis and he did not want to harm citizens. Maybe this is actually what he's attempting? I'm only looking for the truth. And no I do not believe Putin is correct in his actions either. I'm not sure what the answers are. I watched footage of Ukrainian refugees saying that the Azoz are removing people from their homes and using them as battle points.

  17. Funny how Putin is a criminal when Russia was pushed to this to protect their existance but NATO leaders are not called criminals when they invade countries that did nothing and for the purpose of stealing and controlling markets

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