Updates: War in Ukraine


Alexandra Saffman

Over the past month, Russian bombing of infrastructure has hit close to a third of Ukraine’s power stations, and citizens have been encouraged to conserve energy, while millions have been left without electricity. Within the past couple of weeks, the capital of Ukraine has been the target of many of these Russian strikes and has consequently seen severe power outages. Mayor Vitali Klitschko has warned citizens to prepare for total blackouts by purchasing warm clothes and power banks, as well as expecting a total loss of water, electricity, and heating. The outages are expected to continue into winter, which has prompted many to seek shelter with relatives in rural areas. In Kherson, which is liable to be regained by Ukraine in the next couple of weeks, Russian strikes hit three power lines on the Berislav-Kakhovka highway causing a total blackout. Ukraine has received aid, in the form of power generators, from 17 EU countries, but a lack of workers and equipment, as well as continuing safety issues in occupied zones, have prevented it from rebuilding the power lines.  

In the Eastern Donetsk region, hundreds of Russian soldiers are being killed daily according to Reuters. In his nightly address, President Zelensky commented that “the ground in front of Ukrainian positions is littered with bodies of the occupiers.” Despite the heavy losses, Russia is continuing to make small advances in the Donetsk, Luhansk, Kherson, Mykolaiv, and Zaporizhzhia regions, and President Putin has remained committed to the war. 

Senior U.S. officials are now urging Ukraine to open up the possibility of diplomatic discussion with Russia, arguing that public support for the war may wane considering victory is not in clear sight. While it has not been recommended that negotiations are opened now, it has been suggested that considering them places Ukraine on moral high ground and suggests that a resolution is wanted. Zelensky has said that “We are ready for a dialogue with Russia, but with another president of Russia,” while the Kremlin has signaled that “at the moment we do not see such an opportunity, because Kyiv turned into a law [their decision] not to continue any negotiations.”