This Week in the Russia-Ukraine War (July 7)

A snapshot of recent news from sources around the world on the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war.

Ukrainian Troops on Review. Image – Flickr/President of Ukraine

The United Kingdom’s defense chief, Adm. Sir Tony Radakin, said Russia has lost half of its combat effectiveness in Ukraine, including up to 2,500 tanks.

Russia says its air defense network prevented a Ukrainian drone attack on Moscow. The Russian Defense Ministry claims four drones were shot down outside Moscow, and that a fifth was forced down using electronic warfare measures.

Russia launched its own drone strike against Kyiv on Sunday. Ukraine claimed it shot down eight Iranian-made Shaded loitering munitions and three Kalibr cruise missiles.

The U.S. has decided to provide cluster munitions to Ukraine. The weapon in question is the dual-purpose improved conventional munition, or DPICM. The White House initially hesitated to provide cluster munitions because of the risk of civilians encountering unexploded ordnance. The Pentagon said it would select rounds with lower dud rates to reduce that risk.

The U.S. announced a new security assistance package for Ukraine, which will pull equipment from U.S. inventories. A DoD press release did not include the value of the deal, but reports say the aid package is worth $800 million. The package includes Patriot missiles; AIM-7 missiles for air defense; Stinger anti-aircraft systems, High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS) ammunition; 31 155mm howitzers; 155mm artillery rounds, including DPICM cluster munitions, and 105mm artillery rounds; 32 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles; 32 Stryker armored vehicles; mineclearing equipment; Tube-launched, Optically tracked, Wire-guided (TOW) missiles; Javelin and other anti-armor systems and rockets; precision aerial munitions; Penguin unmanned aerial systems; 27 tactical vehicles to recover equipment; 10 tactical vehicles to tow and haul equipment;  demolition munitions and obstacle-clearing systems; small arms and over 28 million rounds of small arms ammunition and grenades; and spare parts and other field equipment.

Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov spoke to the Financial Times this week about how NATO-made equipment has fared against Russia’s military, noting that Ukraine shares battlefield insights with the West so that Western militaries “can actually see if their weapons work, how efficiently they work and if they need to be upgraded.” Commenting on the HIMARS (High Mobility Artillery Rocket System), Reznikov praised its performance but added that Russia has been able to jam the GPS-guided weapons. He said, “The Russians come up with a countermeasure, we inform our partners and they make a new countermeasure against this countermeasure.”

The United Kingdom has sent an unknown number of Storm Shadow missiles to Ukraine.  Now, The British government is considering replacing these missiles with the Israeli-made Rampage.

Ukraine’s air defense forces have received large numbers of surface-to-air missiles (SAMs) from the country’s Western allies.  These systems are helping to stiffen Ukrainian defenses against Russian missile and drone attacks.  Ukraine’s mobile SAMs are playing a key role in this operation.

Russia fired 10 Kalibr missiles at Lviv on July 6.  This is the largest single attack on the city since the start of the war.  The Ukrainian government said it will respond to this attack.

Denmark has trained Ukrainian soldiers in the use of donated artillery systems.  The Danish government has provided 19 CAESAR 8×8 self-propelled 155mm artillery systems to Ukraine.  Danish troops also trained Ukrainians to support and maintain this system.

During a visit to the Czech Republic on Friday, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky continued his push for the U.S. to provide his forces with long-range weapons to aid in both offensive and defensive operations. He was alluding to weapons like the Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS), which offers a longer range than the HIMARS that the U.S. has already donated to Ukraine. The White House has hesitated to provide long-range weapons that Ukraine could potentially use to strike targets inside Russian territory.

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