On Wednesday, Ukrainian officials announced that a vehicle transporting President Volodymyr Zelenskyy was involved in an incident, but that the president was unharmed.
Speculation swirled for a time, as in recent weeks the daughter of a key aide to Russian President Vladimir Putin was killed in a car bombing, and Putin’s car was reportedly attacked on Thursday in an assassination attempt.
The incident involving the Ukrainian president occurred when Zelenskyy was returning from a visit to the city of Izium — one of the cities recently liberated by a surprisingly successful counterattack by Ukrainian forces.
According to Fox News, the counteroffensive forced Russian forces to withdraw from “more than 1,000 square miles of previously occupied territory.”
The president’s motorcade was returning to Kyiv when a passenger car collided with Zelenskyy’s vehicle. Fox News reported the president “was not seriously injured, and his medical team tended to the driver of the passenger vehicle, who was taken away in an ambulance.”
On Wednesday afternoon, Zelenskyy sought to put to rest false reports by delivering his daily video address. He appeared unharmed in the video.
Some suggest the tide seems to be turning for Ukraine. Multiple reports note that Russian troops are suffering from low morale, are poorly supplied and that many “dropped their weapons and fled during last week’s offensive.”
Local resident Olena Matvienko told The Washington Post that Russian soldiers “came into our houses to take clothes so the drones wouldn’t see them in uniforms.”
Matvienko added: “They took our bicycles. Two of them pointed guns at my ex-husband until he handed them his car keys.”
Putin has struck back by striking civilian infrastructure targets such as dams and power stations, which elicited condemnation from many in the United States and Europe.
Strategic intelligence writer Rebekah Koffler warns Ukrainian allies not to make too much of Putin’s strategic retreat, telling Fox News Digital on Monday:
“Many believe that Russia will now retreat, given that there are signs that the momentum on the battlefield may be shifting again in Ukraine’s favor. But it will be the opposite. Putin is cornered and when cornered, he fights back much harder.”
Koffler continued: “His psychological profile is such that he cannot accept defeat until defeat engulfs him. He also absolutely cannot afford defeat in Ukraine because his whole post-cold war strategy for Russia hinges on the concept of re-integration of former Soviet states back under Russian control.”
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