Terrifying reason ‘paranoid’ Putin ‘holding back’ full Russian onslaught

Since the beginning of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24, Moscow has shelled cities but has failed to gain a foothold in “major cities”. Military analyst Franz-Stefan Gady has said both Russia and Ukraine “could not continue this war of attrition for much longer”. However, Mr Gady accepted Russia has a larger army that it is “holding back”, with some of its more advanced weapons and forces not being used so far.

He said: “There has been no general mobilisation in Russia yet. In addition, the Russian air force has in recent days targeted and destroyed the Ukrainian arms industry, which has been clearly seen recently.

“The Russian leadership obviously wants to punish Ukraine and make it much more difficult to rearm for a time after the war.

“Disarmament was, after all, a goal of the Russian leadership. It will therefore be much more difficult for Ukraine to replenish its losses.”

READ MORE: Ukraine LIVE: Putin flounders as Russia suffers ‘heavy losses’-MoD

When asked whether Russia is “saving its modern weapons systems and well-trained troops for a war with NATO”, Mr Gady said Putin is being “very careful”.

He added: “The Russians are very careful with their air force, for example. But Russia has no interest in a two-front war.

“At the moment, 75 percent, including elite units, of Russia’s land forces in Ukraine are engaged in a war with high casualties.

“Russia is certainly holding back some of its more modern weapons, also because in the background they always fear a conflict with NATO, there is traditionally a certain paranoia.

“But the Russian general staff certainly does not want such a war.”

In an interview with RND, Mr Gady also noted Russian troops have so far failed to “encircle” Kyiv, Ukraine’s capital, but stressed “it is very likely that this encirclement will succeed”.

He said: “The question is how tight this siege ring will be, or whether there will be gaps to get supplies into the city.

“But I also believe that the Russian forces do not have enough troops to conquer this city house by house. You must not forget that people have been preparing for a house-to-house fight there for almost three weeks already.

“The ratio of attackers to defenders here, in order to advance, would be at least five to one, that is, five attackers to one defender – and since there was such a long preparation time here, probably six or seven to one.”


It comes after Australian defence minister Peter Dutton said the “ruthless and paranoid” Putin will be “destroyed” by his invasion of Ukraine.

He said: “He harbours a deep and enduring resentment toward the West and the United States in particular.

“And he wants more than anything to restore an imperial Russian empire with himself in absolute control. That much is totally clear.

“A successful, democratic, Europe-leaning Ukraine has no place in his utterly warped and cynical world view.

“And so he has set out to destroy it. It’s becoming clear that Putin’s Ukrainian gamble has been a miscalculation. It may very well destroy the man himself.”

It also comes as the UK prepares to deploy its Sabre anti-air missile system to NATO ally Poland, along with 100 troops.

The troops are to be sent on a short deployment of three to six months.

A Ministry of Defence spokesman said the Sabre missile system was being sent to protect Polish airspace and was purely for defensive purposes.

The US and Germany have already sent air defence systems to NATO’s eastern flank.

The deployment follows Russia bombing a Ukrainian military base in Yavoriv, just 16 km (10 miles) from the Polish border, over the weekend.

Additional reporting from Monika Pallenberg

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