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Macron ‘panicked’ over leaked Ukraine reports – Marianne

A series of classified documents has debunked Western narratives about Kiev’s battlefield prospects

French President Emmanuel Macron’s talk about maybe sending troops to aid Kiev may have been spurred by three assessments produced by the French military that painted a dire picture of the Ukraine conflict, according to the magazine Marianne.

The reports, which have somehow found their way into the weekly’s possession, argued that Ukraine wrecked its Western-trained force in the failed 2023 offensive, has run out of men to mobilize, and that its recent loss in Avdeevka shows it can’t even hold the line against Russia.

“Ukraine cannot win this war militarily,” concludes the first report, written in the fall of 2023, following Kiev’s disastrous ground offensive. It praises the Russian forces as the new “tactical and technical” standard of how to run defensive operations and debunks the media myth of “meat assaults.”

For the West to continue pursuing a military solution in Ukraine would be “the most serious error of analysis and judgment,” the classified document said, according to Marianne.

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Sending French troops to Ukraine would be “unreasonable,” one senior officer wrote. “Make no mistake, up against the Russians we are an army of cheerleaders!” he added.

The second report, outlining the prospects for 2024, says that Kiev needs 35,000 men per month but is “recruiting less than half” of that number, while Russia enlists 30,000 volunteers monthly. Meanwhile, the 2023 offensive “tactically destroyed” half of Kiev’s 12 combat brigades.

“The West can provide 3D printers to manufacture drones or loitering munitions, but will never be able to print men,” the report said.

One solution it advised was sending Western troops to Ukraine to carry out support tasks in the rear, freeing the Ukrainians for frontline duty.

The second report also acknowledged the Western special forces and “soldiers in civilian clothes” had a far greater presence in Ukraine than officially acknowledged, including “quite a few British,” as well as French naval commandos training the Ukrainians.

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The third and latest report, which had the French observers “in cold sweat,” described the Battle of Avdeevka as a possible “rout” of Ukrainian forces. It described how Russia created “hell” for the Ukrainian troops by using massive glide bombs to inflict more than 1,000 casualties per day. The French document also described the Ukrainian retreat on February 17 as “sudden and unprepared.”

At the end of February, Macron made an argument to NATO members that all options for helping Ukraine should be “on the table,” implying the possibility of sending ground troops. The idea was publicly repudiated by most members of the US-led bloc, however.

 

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