Russia poised to attack Ukraine from three sides

If you’ve turned on the TV over the past month, you’re probably aware that Russia has conducted a massive military buildup on the borders of its neighbor, Ukraine. Thousands of Russian tanks, artillery and other military vehicles have been shipped from as far away as the Pacific to staging grounds in southwestern Russia and Belarus.

By some accounts, 70% of the country’s entire military power now rests ready to strike Ukraine within days, should the order be given. Moscow now possesses somewhere in the region of 170,000 professional soldiers alone in areas adjacent to Ukraine, not to mention National Guard militia and support units.

There are signs that a major operation may not be as imminent as once thought: Russia’s Defense Ministry announced on Tuesday that some of its assets in Belarus had finished exercises and would be withdrawing. However, US President Joe Biden said the withdrawal had not been verified and that Russian forces remained in a threatening position with an attack still “very much a possibility.”

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