Ukraine is ‘decimating’ Russian forces as Putin’s plan ‘fails’, admiral claims

Ukrainian forces are 'decimating' their Russian counterparts as Vladimir Putin's invasion is 'failing under pressure', says one of the UK's top admirals.

Chief of the Defence Staff Admiral Sir Tony Radakin insisted that the Ukraine war is "not going well" for Russia's president, faced with an "incredibly complex" situation.

As Putin vows to press on with his internationally condemned "special military operation", Ukrainian officials claimed today to have killed over 11,000 Russian troops and taken out 290 tanks, 46 aircraft and 999 armoured personal carriers so far.

Speaking to the BBC about whether Russian success in Ukraine was 'inevitable', Sir Tony said: "No. I think we've seen a Russian invasion that is not going well.

"I think we're also seeing remarkable resistance by Ukraine, both its armed forces and its people and we're seeing the unity of the whole globe coming together, applying pressure to Russia.

"Russia is suffering, Russia is an isolated power. It is less powerful than it was ten days ago. Some of the lead elements of Russian forces have been decimated by the Ukrainian response.

"You've also seen basic failures in terms of maintenance and their kit failing. Russia hasn't operated at this scale since the Second World War and it is incredibly complex and difficult."

However, he said the key call of Kyiv – a no-fly zone – would not help those on the ground.

Ukrainian leaders have repeatedly called for a no-fly zone but Putin warned that imposing one would be considered "participation in the armed conflict".

NATO has ruled it out as the alliance fears it would spark a wider conflict.

General Philip Breedlove, a former NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe, told Times Radio allies should enforce a humanitarian no-fly zone, with different rules of engagement than a military one "whereby we talk to our enemy, and we say, we are not going to fire on you unless you fire on us".

On Sunday, Ukrainian newspaper The Kyiv Independent reported the country's President Volodymyr Zelenskyy had reiterated his demand as he said: "The world has the power to close our skies for Russian rockets and aircraft."

Sir Tony told the BBC's Sunday Morning programme: "The advice that we as senior military professionals are giving our politicians is to avoid doing things that are tactically ineffective and definitely to avoid doing things that tactically might lead to miscalculation or escalation.

"The no-fly zone would not help.

"Most of the shelling is coming from artillery, most of the destruction is coming from artillery, it's not coming from Russian aircraft.

"If we were to police a no-fly zone, it means that we probably have to take out Russian defence systems and we would have NATO aircraft in the air alongside Russian aircraft, and then the potential of shooting them down and then that leads to an escalation."

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