The EconomistThe Economist

Vladimir Putin’s war is failing. The West should help it fail faster

15 Sep 2022 · 4 min read

The Economist argues that the West should “reinforce success” and send more powerful weapons to Ukraine, all while resisting Putin’s “energy blackmail.”

Curated by informed

One of the many excuses Vladimir Putin has given for invading the country next door is that Ukraine and Russia are “one nation”, which should be united under his benign rule. “Do you still think that?” asked Ukraine’s president, as his troops swept thousands of Russian invaders from Kharkiv province this week. Volodymyr Zelensky’s triumphant sarcasm was justified. The Kharkiv counter-offensive, which began on September 5th, marks the most dramatic Russian reversal since Mr Putin abandoned his effort to seize Kyiv, the Ukrainian capital, at the end of March.

Its significance is not just the liberation of 6,000 square kilometres of territory in a few days—more than Russia had gained in the previous five months. Nor is it Ukraine’s seizure of the tanks, guns and boxes of ammunition that the Russian soldiers left behind as they fled in disorder. Ukraine has also recaptured two transport hubs, Izyum and Kupyansk, which Russia needs if it is to complete its conquest of the Donbas region and integrate it into Russia. Mr Putin’s plans to stage phoney “referendums” on annexing occupied parts of southern and eastern Ukraine are now on hold, as Ukraine counter-attacks in both areas. Predictions in war are always risky, but the tide seems to have turned. Russia’s occupation is everywhere held in check, and Ukraine is gradually—and sometimes suddenly—rolling it back.

The news, curated.

Subscribe in our mobile app to continue reading this The Economist article

Already subscribed? Sign in

Get world-class journalism from premium publishers, curated by editors and experts. All in one app.

Subscribe now and get 14 days free.