Ukraine Will Win War This Year If Allies Remain United ‘Like A Fist’


Speaking to reporters on the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, President Volodymyr Zelensky claimed his forces would win the war this year but only if western allies remain united “like a fist,” as western countries led by the U.S. impose more sanctions on Russia and provide more military aid for Ukraine.

Key Facts

Speaking to reporters in Kyiv, Zelensky said, “I’m not a hero, but at least I’ve done something since we’re sitting here in Kyiv.”

When asked to speculate on the reasons why Ukraine could fail to win the war within the next 12 months, Zelensky admitted it would be hard to win without continued supply of western weapons and ammunition, but said, “I don’t want to think about it.”

Zelensky said one of Ukraine’s priorities needs to be destroying Russian weapons that have been stationed on Ukrainian territory to “target civilian populations,” including “bus stations, electricity, potable water supplies,” as well as “hospitals and schools.”

In an address ahead of the press conference Friday morning, Zelensky had also praised Ukrainian troops and argued the war has reinforced Ukrainians’ morale even as Russian air attacks continue, particularly in the country’s eastern and southern regions, calling the past 12 months a “furious year of invincibility” and saying “we were not defeated.”

Key Background

Zelensky’s comments come as the Biden Administration announced a new round of sanctions targeting Russia’s metal and mining sector and financial institutions in what the Treasury Department called “one of its most significant sanctions actions to date.” The Biden Administration also reportedly plans to provide Ukraine with a new $2 billion aid package. It comes amid warnings from U.S. officials that Russia could be preparing a renewed military offensive to mark the one year anniversary of its invasion of Ukraine. Earlier this week, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced he would suspend Russia’s participation in a nuclear arms treaty with the U.S., called New START, and that he would deploy combat-ready nuclear weapons on the ground. Russian troops have been struggling in recent months to make major territorial gains, having fallen back from Ukrainian strongholds in the eastern and southern regions of the country. Ukrainian forces also repelled a major offensive on Kyiv earlier on in the war.

Crucial Quote

In his address, Zelensky acknowledged Ukrainians have withstood “all threats, shelling, cluster bombs, cruise missiles, kamikaze drones, blackouts and cold,” and pledged “we will do everything to gain victory this year!”

News Peg

Zelensky’s speech comes amid calls from western countries to hold Putin accountable for “crimes against humanity. Speaking to Sky News Friday, U.S. envoy Beth Van Schaack said it’s only a matter of time before Putin is put on trial for war crimes, saying an international investigation team is looking into allegations of Russian war crimes in Ukraine.


Amid calls for peace in Ukraine, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken argued at a U.N. Security Council meeting Friday that a peace negotiation that legitimizes Russia’s land grab would “send a message to would-be aggressors” that they can “get away with” invasion. Putin, meanwhile, is “not preparing for peace,” but for “more war,” according to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, speaking on Friday at an event in Estonia.

Further Reading

Calls For Putin To Face War Crimes Trial Intensify As Invasion Enters Second Year (Forbes)

Biden Reportedly Plans $2 Billion Ukraine Aid Package Ahead Of Feared Russian Offensive (Forbes)