Zelenskyi dismisses Zaluzhnyi, replaces him with Syrskyi. The fate of U.S. aid to Ukraine remains uncertain as a Senate vote on a border and national security bill fails.
Zelenskyi dismisses Zaluzhnyi, names Syrskyi top commander
In social media posts following a meeting on Thursday, Commander-in-Chief of the Ukrainian Armed Forces, General Valeriy Zaluzhnyi and Ukrainian President, Volodymyr Zelenskyi said that the leadership for the Armed Forces of Ukraine will be renewed.
Zelenskyi’s post said that he held a meeting with Zaluzhnyi and thanked him for “two years of defending Ukraine.” Zelenskyi said they discussed what kind of renewal the Armed Forces of Ukraine need and who could be part of the renewed leadership for Ukraine’s military. “The time for such a renewal is now. I proposed to General Zaluzhnyi to remain part of the team. We will definitely win! Glory to Ukraine!” Zelenskyi said on X.
Zaluzhnyi wrote on his Telegram channel that Ukraine “has withstood a vile and powerful enemy” in the most difficult days of the full-scale war. The fight continues and is changing every day. “The tasks of 2022 are different from those of 2024. Therefore, everyone must change and adapt to the new realities as well,” he said. “We have just met with the Supreme Commander-in-Chief. It was an important and serious conversation. It was decided that we need to change our approaches and strategy,” Zaluzhnyi said.
Zaluzhnyi will be replaced by the Commander of Ukraine’s ground forces, Oleksandr Syrskyi. “I have appointed Colonel General Oleksandr Syrskyi as the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine,” Zelenskyi announced on Thursday evening.
“Starting today, a new management team is taking over the leadership of the Armed Forces of Ukraine. I want the vision of the war to be unified among our soldiers in Robotyne or Avdiyivka, as well as in the General Staff and at the Headquarters,” Zelenskyi said in his address Thursday.
“I have had dozens of conversations with commanders of various levels. In particular, today I spoke with Brigadier Generals Andriy Hnatov (former commander of the 36th marine brigade), Mykhailo Drapatyi (former commander of the 58th motorized brigade), Ihor Skybyuk (former commander of the 80th air assault brigade), and Colonels Pavlo Palisa (commander of the 93rd mechanized brigade), and Vadym Sukharevskyi (commander of the 59th motorized brigade),” Zelenskyi said.
“They are all considered for leadership positions in the army and will serve under the leadership of the most experienced Ukrainian commander. He has successful experience in defense — he led the Kyiv Defense Operation. He also has successful experience in offense — the Kharkiv Liberation Operation,” the president said.
Fate of U.S. aid to Ukraine remains uncertain as Senate vote on border and national security bill fails
The U.S. Senate blocked a bipartisan border and national security bill from advancing in a test vote on Wednesday. The bill included aid for Ukraine and Israel.
Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk slammed U.S. Republicans for blocking a bill containing billions in military assistance for Ukraine. “Dear Republican Senators of America. Ronald Reagan, who helped millions of us to win back our freedom and independence, must be turning in his grave today,” Tusk wrote Thursday morning on X. “Shame on you.”
The day after the U.S. Senate failed to pass a border security deal he spent four months negotiating, Democratic Senator Chris Murphy voiced hope that enough Republicans would vote to pass a military aid package to Ukraine no longer linked to the border measure, according to Reuters. Murphy’s biggest worry is that aid to Ukraine will fall victim to the same force that killed the border plan: Donald Trump.
U.S. President Joe Biden blamed his opponent former President Donald Trump for calling and “threatening” lawmakers with “retribution” if they supported the package, which also included more American funding for Ukraine and Israel, according to CNN.
Ukrainian soldiers cannot wait while some alternative funding idea percolates through a congressional committee. They need ammunition now. By further blocking the bill House Republicans are helping Vladimir Putin, an Economist editorial said.
Steadfast Defender 2024: A NATO wake-up call? Ukraine in Flames #570
In this episode of Ukraine in Flames, we discuss NATO’s largest military training exercise since the Cold War, Steadfast Defender 2024, and whether NATO has woken up to the threats posed by Russia. The military and Russian propaganda experts tell of the reasoning behind such large-scale training and the weak points, vulnerabilities, and prospects of a Russian-NATO conflict. Take a watch of UIF #570 to find out more.
- Leonid Polyakov, Military expert, Advisor to the Director of the National Research for Strategic Studies
- Mykhailo Samus, Director of the New Geopolitical Studies Network.
- Volodymyr Solovian, Head of the Hybrid Warfare Analytical Group at Ukraine Crisis Media Centre