“Don’t write off Russia” — that was the muttered warning of a European diplomat, with long experience in Moscow. It is a fair point. Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine has gone badly wrong. But Russia remains a huge country, with plentiful resources and a ruthless, brutal government.
Ukraine’s intelligence services think that further conscription drives may allow Russia to deploy an army of 2mn for a renewed offensive later this year. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy recently warned that Moscow might soon make a fresh attempt to capture Kyiv.