< p> The offensive plan, which helped Ukraine regain control over most of the Kharkiv region, was developed in mid-summer with the participation of American and British experts. This is reported by The New York Times, citing its sources.
Initially, the Armed Forces of Ukraine developed a plan for an offensive in the south of the country, which was supposed to return Kherson and cut off Mariupol from Russian troops in the east. Subsequently, Ukrainian and American experts came to the conclusion that such an operation would entail huge losses and might not lead to a quick seizure of territories.
The newspaper notes that after that the Ukrainian command began to share their plans with American and British intelligence more actively. U.S. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan discussed plans for the offensive several times with Andriy Yermak, head of the presidential office in Ukraine, while Joint Chiefs Chairman Mark Milley spoke regularly with Ukrainian commanders about intelligence and military assistance.
One of the key arguments was that the offensive had to be carried out before the start of winter, since then Russian dictator Vladimir Putin would have the opportunity to put pressure on Europe with gas.
Already in August, Washington began to actively transmit intelligence about positions Russian troops and look for their weak points. Analysis of intelligence data showed that Moscow is unlikely to be able to quickly strengthen its positions in the northeast, even if it notices Ukraine's preparations for an offensive.
The final plan involved two offensives – near Kherson and near Kharkov. The successful offensive in the Kharkiv region revealed the lack of quality intelligence in the Russian army, which was unable to detect the build-up of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in time.
However, despite the success in eastern Ukraine, officials in both Washington and Kyiv consider what is happening in south. There, as expected, the counteroffensive moves much more slowly due to the much larger number of Russian troops. However, the start of the operation made it possible to postpone a possible vote on the annexation of Kherson to Russia.